INDIANA TRAILS BROWN COUNTY
HISTORY OF BROWN COUNTY
( BY WESTON A.. GOODSPEED )
INDIAN CESSION TREATIES
The territory comprising the county of Brown lies partly within the limits of two tracts of land, secured at different times from the Indians by treaty. A straight line drawn from Section 25, Township 9 north, Range I east, to Section 7, Township 7 north, Range 4 east, will coincide with this old Indian boundary, which extends, as will be seen by this, from southeast to northwest. All that portion of Brown County southwest of this boundary was, with other territory of which it formed a part, obtained from the Indians at the treaty of Fort Wayne, on the 30th of September, 1809, and constituted a portion of Harrison s Purchase. The boundary line was run or surveyed at this time by Arthur Henrie and William Harris. All that portion of Brown County northeast of the line, remained the property of the Indians until the treaty of October 2 to 6, 1818, at St. Mary s, Ohio, when it became with other lands the property of the Government, and constituted a part of the New Purchase. The Indians were permitted to occupy the lands for the purpose of obtaining sustenance from the chase for the period of two years, at which time they were removed farther west to territory prepared for them. The first settlers found the Indians still here. The survey of that portion of Brown County in the Harrison Purchase, was made in the autumn of 1812 by Arthur Henrie and William Harris, and that portion in the New Purchase by and J. HedgesA. C. Looker, in 1819.
INITIATORY LEGISLATIVE ENACTMENT'S
The first known disposition made of any portion of the lands of Brown County by the General Assembly of Indiana, was at the session of 1817-18, when all south of the old Indian boundary of 1809 was made a part of Monroe County created at that time, as will be fully seen in another part of this work. This was a short time before the Indians title to the northern portion of the county was extinguished. Probably the next disposition made of Brown County lands was in January, 1820, when that portion north of the Indian boundary, or in the New Purchase, together with more of the New Purchase, was formed into Delaware County, as will be seen from Section 2, of an act approved by the General Assembly, January 20, 1820, as follows:
SECTION 2. That all the remaining part of said New Purchase lying east of the Second Principal Meridian, except so much of it as has been attached to the counties of Fayette, Jackson and Wayne, by former laws, and except so much of it as is attached by the first section of this act to the counties named therein, be and the same is hereby formed into a new county, to be known by the name of Delaware.
By an act of the General Assembly, approved December 31, 1821, that portion of Brown County in the New Purchase, and west of the extended line dividing Sections 4 and 5, Township 10 north, Range 2 east, was made a part of Monroe County not attached, but made a part of. By an act approved January 16, 1828, the following territory, now comprising a part of Brown County, was attached to Jackson County, to wit:
Beginning on the line dividing the counties of Jackson and Bartholomew, at a point where the line dividing Ranges 3 and 4 east, of the Second Principal Meridian, intersects the same; thence north with said line three miles to the northeast corner of Township 7; thence west with the line dividing Townships 7 and 8,
to the line of Monroe County; thence south to
the, line of Jackson County; thence east to the place of
beginning. And at the same time, by the same act, the following
territory, now comprising a portion of the county of Brown, was
attached to Monroe County, to wit: Beginning at a point on the
line dividing Townships 7 and 8, where the line dividing
Sections 30 and 81 intersects the same; thence north with the
last mentioned line to the line dividing the counties of
Bartholomew and Johnson; thence west with said line to the
northeast corner of Monroe County; thence south, to the line
dividing Townships 7 and 8; thence east with the last mentioned
line to the place of beginning. At the same time, and by the
same act, it was provided that all territory east of Monroe
County and west of Bartholomew County, not attached to Jackson
or Monroe Counties, should form a part of Bartholomew County. No
other change seems to have been made until the creation of Brown
County in 1836. The territory composing the county was of course
formed into townships, or at least attached to townships in the
counties of Bartholomew, Monroe and Jackson. Bartholomew County
was created in 1821, Monroe in 1818, and Jackson in 1815. That
portion of Brown County attached to Monroe formed a part of
Jackson and Salt Creek Townships; that part attached to
Bartholomew formed part of Harrison, Union, Nineveh and Ohio
Townships, and that part attached to Jackson formed part of Salt
Creek Township. In the meantime, the settlers continued to come
in slowly and locate, for the most part on the hills of Brown
County. At last, in 1885, enough had arrived to warrant the
formation of the county, and accordingly the Representatives in
the State Legislature were requested to introduce the bill and
carry it through, which in February, 1836, was done, as follows:
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the, State of Indiana, that from and after the 1st day of April next, all that tract of country included in the following boundary lines shall form and constitute a new county, to be known and designated by the name of the county of Brown (in honor of the late Maj. Gen. Jacob Brown): Beginning at the northwest corner of Section. 1,, in Township 10 north, of Range I west, of the Second Principal Meridian; thence south with the Government land line twenty miles, to the southwest corner of Section 12, Township 7 north, of the aforesaid range; thence east sixteen miles, to the southeast corner of Section 9, in the last mentioned township, and in Range 4 east; thence north with the Government land line twenty miles, to the northeast corner of Section 4, Township 10 north; thence west with the line dividing Townships 10 and 11 sixteen miles to the place of beginning.
SEC. 2. That the new county of Brown shall, from and after the 1st day of April next, enjoy and possess all the rights, privileges, benefits and jurisdictions which to separate and independent counties do or may properly belong or appertain.
SEC. 3. That James Alexander and Aquilla Rogers, of Monroe County,David Delta and Hiram Wilson, of Bartholomew County, and Stephen Sparks, of Jackson County, be and are hereby appointed Commissioners, agreeably to the act entitled An act fixing the seat of justice in all new counties hereafter to be laid of The Commissioners afore said shall meet on the second Monday in August next, at the house of James Dawson in the said county of Brown, and shall proceed immediately to perform the duties required of them by law; and it shall be the duty of the Sheriff of Monroe County to notify the Commissioners, either in person or by writing, of their appointment, on or before the second Monday of July next; and for such service he shall receive such compensation as the board doing county business in the said county of Brown may, when organized, deem just and reasonable, to be allowed and paid as the other county claims.
SEC. 4. The Circuit Court and, the Board of County Commissioners, when elected under the writ of election from the Executive Department, shall hold their sessions as near the center of the county as a convenient place can be had, until the public buildings can be erected.
SEC. 5. The agent who shall be appointed to superintend the sale of lots at the county seat of said county of Brown, shall reserve ten per centum out of the proceeds thereof, and pay the same over to such person or persons as may be appointed by law to receive the same for the use of a county library.
SEC. 6. The county of Brown shall be attached to the Seventh Judicial Circuit. of this State for judicial purposes, and for Representative purposes the citizens of said county shall vote in the counties of Bartholomew and Monroe in the following manner:
Those living within the territory of said new county, which was stricken from either of the counties aforesaid, shall vote with the respective counties from which they were stricken.
SEC. 7. That the Circuit Court shall be held in the county of Brown on Mondays succeeding the week of the Monroe Circuit Court, and sit three days at each term, should the business require it.
SEC. 8. That the Justices of the Peace in and for said county, when elected and qualified by a. writ of election from the Executive Department, shall constitute the Board of County Commissioners, and the Board of Commissioners aforesaid shall hold special sessions, not exceeding three during the first year after the organization of said county, and shall make all necessary appointments, and do and perform all other business which may or might have been necessary to be performed at any other regular session, and. to take all necessary steps to collect the State and county revenue, any law or usage to the contrary notwithstanding.
SEC. 9. That the act entitled An act providing the mode of opening and repairing public roads and highways in the county of Monroe (approved February 2, 1833), and. the act entitled An act to amend the several acts regulating the jurisdiction and duties of Justices of the Peace in the several counties herein named (approved February 7, 1835), be and the same are hereby declared to be in force in the said new county of Brown.
SEC. 10. This act to be in force from and after its passage.
Approved February 4, 1886.
A mistake was made by the clerks of the Legislature in the wording of this enactment, which was corrected at the succeeding session as follows:
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State cf Indiana, That the word west, when it occurs in the eighth line of the first section of said act, shall be and the same is hereby declared to be a misprint, and that the word east shall be substituted in lieu thereof, and that the boundary lines of the said new county of Brown shall be permanently established in accordance with said change.
SEC. 2. That the election of all officers, and that the proceedings of the board doing county business in said county from its first organization up to the time of the publication of this act, be and the same are hereby legalized and rendered as valid to all intents and purposes as if no misprint or mistake had occurred in the law for the formation of said county.
SEC. 3. That all fines assessed by any person or persons, citizens of said county of Brown, for the non-performance of militia duty, and. the non-performance of road labor, or either of them in Monroe County, be and the same are hereby declared to be illegal, and in any case where a fine as aforesaid has been assessed and paid, the same shall be refunded to him or them or an equivalent amount of county orders. This act to be in force force and after its publication in the Indiana Democrat.
Approved December 20, 1836.
The first thing necessary
in the new county was the election of the necessary officers for
the management of county affairs and the administration of
justice. James Dawson was
commissioned Sheriff by the Governor, and directed to order an
election of a Clerk and Recorder, two Associate Judges of the
Circuit Court, and three County Commissioners. An election was
accordingly held on the first Monday in June, 1886, and resulted
as follows: John Floyd,
Clerk and Recorder; James Taggart
F. Raper, Associate Judge;
Hedrick, William Jackson and James Davidson,
County Commissioners; James Dawson s
commission as Sheriff was dated April 20, 1836, and was to
remain in force until his successor was elected and qualified
the following August. The commissions of the two Judges and the
Clerk and Recorder were issued July 9; the County Commissioners
were not commissioned, but were to begin service as soon as
elected and qualified. At the August election, became
County Sheriff; James TaggartWilliam Followell, Coroner, and James Mointire, Probate Judge.
FIRST MEETING OF THE COUNTY BOARD
The three County Commissioners met at the house of James Dawson, as provided by law, on the 25th of July, 1886, for the transaction of business. The first act was the subdivision of the county into townships and election precincts, as follows:
CREATION OF TOWNSHIPS AND OTHER ACTS
Hamblen Township, bounded as follows: Beginning at the northwest corner of Section 5, Township 10 north, Range 3 east; thence ten miles to the southwest corner of Section 20; thence east eight miles to the southeast corner of Section 21, in Range 4 east; thence west eight miles to the place of beginning.
Van Buren Township, bounded as follows: Beginning at the northwest corner of Section 29, Township 9 north, Range 3 east; thence ten miles to the southwest corner of Section 8, Township 7 north, Range 3 east; thence eight miles east to the southeast corner of Section 9, Range 4 east; thence ten miles north to the northeast corner of Section 28, Township 9 north, Range 4 east; thence eight miles west to the place of beginning.
Johnson Township, bounded as follows: Beginning at the northeast corner of Section 30, Township 9 north, Range 8 east; thence south ten miles to the southeast corner of Section 7, Town 7 north, Range 3 east; thence eight miles west to the southwest corner of Section 12, Township 7 north, Range 1 east, thence ten miles north to the northwest corner of Section 25, Township 9 north, Range 1 east; thence eight miles east to the place of beginning.
Jackson Township, bounded as follows: Beginning at the northeast corner of Section 6, Township 10 north, Range 3 east; thence ten miles south to the southeast corner of Section 19, Township 9 nOrth, Range 8 east; thence eight miles west to the southwest corner of Section 24, Township 9 north, Range 1 east; thence north ten miles to the northwest corner of Section 1, Township 10 north, Range 1 east; thence eight miles east to the place of beginning.
An election precinct was established at the residence of James Dawson, for all that
part of the county taken from Monroe County,
and one at thehouse of James Taggart and one at the house of
Cornelius Hurley, for that portion taken from Bartholomew
County. Elections were ordered held in the four townships
created on the first Saturday in September, for all the township
officers except Constables. Assessors were appointed, the
returns to be made by the first Monday in September. Thomas
Hempson was appointed County Treasurer. Overseers of the Poor
were appointed for the various townships, their names appearing
in the township sketches accompanying this volume. Supervisors
of Roads were appointed. At the next session the locating
Commissioners appointed by the Legislature presented the
We, the undersigned Commissioners appointed by the act of the Legislature of 1836, (or the location of the county site of Brown County, Ind., do certify that according to said act we met at the house of James Dawson, in said county, on the 8th of August, 1836, and on the 11th of August located the site of said county of Brown on Section 19, Township 9 north, Range 8 east, or a tract of fifty acres of land donated by James Dawson, Banner Brummnet, John Followell, Pierson Brummet, ,James Huff, William Snyder, John King and Henry Jackson. Also, we have received a donation of $150 to be paid in cash, for which we have received a note payable to the Commissioners of said county of Brown in the following persons, to wit: Banner Brummet, James Dawson, James Huff, Pierson Bmummet and J. W. Dunning. We also certify that we have named the county site Jacksonsburg.
Given under our hands this 11th day of August, 1886.
JAMES ALEXANDER Locating
DAVID DIETZ Commussioners.
The amounts claimed by the Commissioners were as follows; Stephen Sparks, for seven days, $21; David
Dietz, for five days, $15: James Alexander, for five days, $15; Hiram Wilson, for five days, $15; total $66. This was not paid until October, 1843, after the lapse
of seven years.
This report was ordered, received and spread upon the records. On the 15th of August, 1836, the township of Washington was created, wIth the following boundaries: Beginning at the southwest corner of Section 36, Township 9 north, Range 1 east; thence east sixteen miles with the township line to the southwest corner of Section 33, Township 9 north, Range 4 east; thence four miles north to the northeast corner of Section 16; thence sixteen miles west to the northwest corner of Section 13, Township 9 north, Range 1 east; thence four miles south to the place of beginning. On the same day also Banner C. Brummet was appointed County Agent, with bond at $4,000, and directed to lay out the county seat into lots to be sold at public auction, the first auction to be September 12, 1836. The sale was ordered advertised in Brown, Monroe, Bartholomew, Johnson and Jackson Counties, and was to continue as long as the agent deemed advisable The terms of the sale were to be one fourth in advance, one fourth in eight months, one fourth in sixteen months, and the remainder in twenty four months. On the 16th of August the County Agent was ordered to lay out the county seat, which he proceeded to do. One dollar was ordered paid for each wolf scalp, and the first claimant under this order was William Snyder, who presented the scalp of one wolf over six months old. James Dawson was appointed County Surveyor. The license for taverns in the county was fixed at $5; liquor or groceries, $5; merchandise, $10; wooden clock peddlers or sellers, $8; ferry keepers, $2. The tax levied was 20 cents On each $100 valuation and $1 on each poll. John Richards was appointed Collector of the State and county revenue. After the lots of the county seat had been laid out, Jonathan Watson and George Groves were appointed to value them, assisted by the County Agent, and the latter was instructed to sell lots at auction thereafter quarterly. Nashville at this time was called Jacksonburg. On the 7th of November, 1836, John S. Williams was appointed County Treasurer. John Floyd had been serving and continued to serve as County Clerk and Recorder, the two offices being held by one man at that time and for a number of years afterward. In January, 1837, William Snyder was appointed Commissioner of the three per cent fund, and. William Jackson was appointed Seminary Trustee. All the fines of the Circuit, justices and other courts went to this fund, which was to be used to .found a county seminary when sufficient in amount. F. Goss, J. Watson and William Taggart were appointed a committee to select public lots upon which to erect county buildings. D D. Weddel, Jonathan Watson and H. C. Weddel were appointed a committee to settle with the County Agent. They found his report to January 3, 1837, to be as follows: Fifty lots bad been sold for $694.87 1/2. Of this $91.90 had been received in cash, and the remainder in notes according to the above conditions of sale. James Dawson was appointed Inspector of the General Election, to be held in Brown County. All these orders were issued and .business done by the County Board, which, after the first few months, consisted of all the Justices of the Peace in the county, who meets the County Commissioners now meet for the transaction of business. As high as ten or twelve met at one time. Meetings of the board were held at the house of James Dawson. The county court house and the jail were built in 1837. The tax for 1837 was 20 cents on each $100 valuation, and $1.25 on each poll. Lot No. 1 was selected for the jail, and Lot No. 2 for the courthouse. The board had been without funds enough to do county business, and had issued orders, which soon began to depreciate in value. The burden then fell upon individuals, in whose hands they fluctuated. To cap the climax, the board in March, 1837, ordered that no county order should he received in payment for town lots. This served to still more depreciate the value of the orders, though they still continued to pass current at a variable point of discount. After a few years this trouble was outgrown.
THE FIRST CIRCUIT COURT
This was held on the 20th of April, 1837, before Elisha M. Huntington, President Judge, and James Taggart and Louis F Raper, Associate Judges. The first acts were the administration of the oaths of folic to the Judges. The next was the consideration of a bastardy case, wherein the defendant moved to dismiss proceedings against him on account of irregularity, which motion was overruled by the court. As it appeared that a regular traverse jury had not been called for the April term of the court, and as the defendant called for a jury, the case was continued until the next term of court, the defendant giving sufficient bond for his appearance. The next case was one of slander Pierson Brutnmet vs. Reuben Mathis. The plaintiff by his counsel, moved to dismiss the; suit, which was done by the court. A seal for the court was then ordered as follows: Brown County Circuit Court, inscribed in a circular forms near the margin of the seal, and in the center the figure of a Western hunter leaning upon the muzzle of his rifle, with, his dog lying at his feet, the whole to be engraved on the usual material of proper diameter and thickness. Banner Bruinmet, David D. Weddel and John Floyd were then appointed Commissioners to view and re-locate so much of the Bloomington & Columbus State road as crossed the farms of Henry Newkirk and Robert Henderson. Court then adjourned.
The second session was begun on the 19th of October, 1837; present, same Judges as before. The following panel of grand jurors was summoned and took their seats. Henry Sipes, Henry Newkirk, Joseph Bracken, Ass Hatten, James Dawson, Stephen Matney, Arnold Helton, II. A. Stivers, Thomas Elkins, James Mathis, Henry Jackson, John David and Stephen Parks. There not being enough of the regular panel present, the Sheriff was ordered to summon two bystanders, which he did as follows: Aaron Mathis and D. D Weddel The jury was sworn and sent out. The following attorneys were then admitted to practice at the court: John Cowgill, C. W. Hester, Paris C. Dunning, Willis A. Gorman, Louis F. Coppersmith and Samuel W. Smith. The bastardy case above mentioned was continued at the cost of the defendant. John Cowgill was States Attorney. The next case was a recognizance to keep the peace Nancy Polly vs. Thomas Polly. Nancy, upon being called, came not, and the defendant was discharged without a day. Six cases were disposed of at this term of court. The grand jury returned ten bills of indictment six gaming, three assault and battery, and one assault and battery with intent to murder. And so the second term ended.
The record of the County Board shows that both traverse and grand jurors were chosen in 1886 as follows: Grand jurors for October, 1886 James Weddel, J. S. Williams, Daniel King, Eliakim Hamblen, Pierson Brummet, Robert Henderson, Robert Robertson, James S. Wood, Alfred Hicks, Griffith Davidson, Henry Jackson and John Hubbard. Traverse jurors for October, 1836 William Whiteham, Wiley Guy, Silas Smith, Solomon Followell, Rolly Sturgeon, Jacob Fleener, Stephen Motley, Hiram. Mabe, Cornelius Cox, Sandy Walker, Arthur Rippy and Pleasant Weddel. Jurors were also drawn for 1837 as follows: Grand jurors for April, 1837 David Warner, John Sinex, Asa Hatten, Cornelius Hurley, William Rippy, Simon Weatherman, William Elkins, Henry Newkirk, William Snyder, John Helton, D. D. Carrol and Abraham Chappel. Traverse jurors, April, 1837 William Johnson, Israel Mullinix, William Davidson David Siveley, James Dawson, Thomas Brown, Stephen Sparks, John Hoover, John Conner, George Followell, Ezra Wilson and Levi Tablet. So far as known, neither of the four juries above given, though legally appointed, served the county.
THE FIRST PROBATE COURTS
On the 8th of May, 1837, the first Probate Court of Brown County convened at the court house at Nashville, with Judge James Mclntire on the bench. The Judge presented his commission from Gov. Noah Noble, and then opened court. There being no business, the court, after adopting a scrawl as a temporary seal, adjourned until August. On the 4th of this month the court again convened, and the first act was the appointment of Alfred Young, administrator of the estate of William Rippe, deceased. Mr. Young reported oh hand of the decedent's estate $608.15, besides considerable personal property reported. He was appointed guardian of the estate, and directed to order a sale of the personal property. The court then adjourned.
At the November term, 1837, there being no business, court adjourned. During vacation, letters of administration were issued to Banner and Esther Brummet, of the estate of James Brummet, deceased. The will of Stephen Robertson was also filed for record. At the February term, 1838, Banner and Esther Brummet, were called to answer for the administration of James Brummet s estate. They reported, under oath, the following bill for record: 8 chairs, $1; 1 horse collar and pair of hames, 43 3/4 cents; 1 saddle and 1 bridle, $1; 1 water pail, 43 3/4 cents; 5 crocks, 50 cents; I tin pan, 7 tin cups, 8 spoons, 1 coffee-pot, S layers, and 1 set of knives and forks, $1.75: I bread tray and smoothing iron, 62~ cents; 1 box, 1 razor, 1 horseshoe, $l.37 1/2 1 bed, bedding and bedstead, $6.50;
1 bed and bedding, $5; 1 bedding and 1 bed, $4; money, $4.06;
1 saddle and bridle, $2.50 total, $26.06 1/4. It being shown that James Brummet had died insolvent, it was ordered that the widow have all the property and pay no demands of the creditors of the deceased. The will of Stephen Robertson was read and admitted to probate. The court then adjourned. In August, Patterson C. Parker became Probate Judge, his commission being signed by Gov. David Wallace.
THE FIRST COMMON PLEAS COVET
This court was established apart from the others in 1853, and the first session was held at Nashville on the 31st of January, 1853, before Judge William G. Quick. The following attorneys were sworn to practice in the court: P. C. Dunning, Daniel McClure, Fred T. Butler, George A. Buskirk and Shadrack. Chandler. The next thing was the adoption of rules governing the court. The first business was the consideration of the petition for dower and partition of Jane Kelley and Zachariah KelIey vs. Nancy Hamblen et al. The next was the examination of witnesses in the case of James Fleetwood for retailing liquor without a license. He was required to appear at the next term of court. And so the business continued at length.
The first courts were held in the residence of James Dawson. On the first Monday in February, 1887, pursuant to an order from the County Board, Banner Brummet, County Agent, let the contract of building a court house and a jail, the first to be finished according to specifications, by the first Monday in September, 1837, and the last by the 1st of November, 1837. The work on both buildings was completed within the time specified. The court house was of hewed logs, 18x24 feet, two stories high, two rooms above, two stairways, one at each end, two windows above, with twelve panes of glass each, one room below with one door, and one window with twelve panes of glass opposite to it; fire-places in all the rooms, chinks, daubed with good mortar and weatherboarded on the inside; gable ends of building to have one window each, and to be weatherboarded. The contractor, David D. Weddel, was to receive $50 on the 1st of June, 1837, and the remainder when the building was completed. The contract of both buildings was sold at public outcry . to the lowest responsible bidder, at Nashville, on the 7th of March, 1837, between the hours of 10 o'clock A. M. and 4 o'clock P. M. The jail built was of hewed logs, 14x14 feet, and one foot thick. There were two walls one foot apart, and each one foot thick, and the space between was filled with hewed foot lumber, inserted perpendicularly. The logs of the walls left no space between them. The building was two stories high, seven feet between floors, floors of twelve inch timber, window nine inches square on each side of criminals room, heavy iron door and windows. Fifty dollars was to be paid on the jail, August 1, 1887, and the remainder when done. William Snyder was the jail contractor. The cost of these two buildings cannot be given, but was probably not more than $700.
This court house answered the purpose until 1853, when arrangements were made to build a brick structure to take its place. The old log structure was sold, and for a year or more the courts were held in the Methodist Church. in the fall of 1853, the court house contract was sold to John Douglas for about $6,500. The house was completed so as to be occupied by the courts in 1855, and cost when fully finished and furnished a little more than $7,000. In 1873, during a session of the Circuit Court, this building took fire and burned to the ground, involving a loss of nearly all the county records. In June, 1874, the contract of rebuilding the house on the old ruins or foundation, and a portion of the old walls, was let to McCormack & Sweeney, of Columbus, for $9,000, of which $4,500 was to be paid when the building was under roof, and the remainder two years after the completion of the work, with ten per cent interest. The work was performed according to contract. The building is of brick, and is two stories high, with courtroom and jury rooms above, and county offices below. Two stairways over the main entrance on the south lead to the second story. The old jail of 1837 was used with various repairs, which were almost equivalent to a new building, until 1879, when the present hewed log bastile was erected, at a cost of about $1,500. The building is two storied, is 20x12; four on the inside, and 8 feet 4 inches high. The old log court house is yet standing, and is used as a stable, a great depression of its former noble use.
MISCELLANEOUS ITEMS OF INTEREST
John Floyd, the first Clerk and Recorder, did not stay in the office himself; but had a deputy, named Avery Magee. The assessment roll in 1837 (spring), showed 225 polls in the county. The land taxable at this time were worth $8,150, and the personal property, $44,649.94. John S. Williams furnished the court house with twelve chairs in September, 1887, and D. D. Weddel furnished a table. Banner Brummet s donation to the county was twenty acres of land. James Taggart was appointed Commissioner of the surplus revenue and the three per cent fund in the fall of 1837. The County Clerk's office was established in the log court house for the first, September 2, 1837. The note of $150, part of the donation to the county, was turned over to the jail contractor as a partial consideration for his work. William Snyder succeeded James Taggart as surplus revenue and three per cent Commissioner. The last named fund was used to pay for the court house and the jail. Considerable money was paid out for wolf scalps. In August, 1839, the first bridge over Salt Creek, east of Nashville, on the Columbus & Bloom-ington road, was built by John A. Brown for $233. Henry Jackson was appointed Seminary Trustee in the fall of 1839. Banner Brummet still continued to serve as County Agent. Shadrach Chandler was appointed a student at the University at Bloomington in 1811. William Taggart became agent of the surplus revenue in 1841. In 1842, Stephen Brocken was appointed a student at the State University ; in 1843. John Arwine, Jr., same; in 1844. Walter Hotchkiss, same; in 1845, Isaac Soinsel, same; in 184i, B. Mason, same. In 1848, D. D. Weddel became County Agent. In 1863, Sylvanus Manville was County Agent. In 1863, the county took several thousand dollars in bonds in the Columbus, Nashville & Bioomington Railroad, but canceled them when it was found that the road would not be built. Daring the winter of 1863-64, the Treasurer's office was robbed of $3,555.59 by burglars, for whom a reward of $1,000 was offered. Neither thieves nor money were recovered. In 1869, the Morgantown & Nashville Gravel Road Company came into being, among the stockholders being James S. Hester, Harvey Coleman, "R. M. Dill, Isaac Knight and Thomas M. Adams. The entire length of the road was thirteen miles and sixty seven rods, and the total estimated cost of grading the same was $17,130. It was decided to omit graveling the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh miles north of Nashville, and the remainder were estimated to cost $10,200. Three miles at the south end of the road had been previously graveled and two miles at the north end, but this had to be purchased. By 1869, there was subscribed $6,120 toward building the road. The benefits to adjoining lands were assessed by order of the County Board. This project was abandoned after much had been 'done. It was revived in 1879, the part between Nashville and Georgetown, when Lawson Hopper, W. D. Roberts, W. G. Quick, W. L. Cox, Isaac Chafin, Eliakim Hamblen and H. W. King asked for the right of way, which was granted. Much of the road was put in good shape and toll-gates were erected, but the collection of toll is almost wholly abandoned at present (November, 1883).
In 1869 a petition signed by over one hundred citizens was presented the County Board, asking that a two per cent donation be given to the Cincinnati & St. Louis Short Line Railroad Company, in consideration that the road should be built through the central part of the county.
In accordance with this decision the tax was levied, but as the road was not built, the limited amounts paid were refunded to the tax-payers In 1876, the citizens voted " yes " to donate $7,700 to the Indianapolis & Evansville Mineral Railway, provided the line was built, and at the same time Jackson Township voted $7,500 aid, and Hamblen Township, $7,-550 aid, for the same road, upon the same condition, but the road was not built.