Blue River Township
The subject of this sketch was born in Abbeville District, South Carolina, in 1797. He was the second son of the Rev. William Tyner, a Baptist minister, who removed from South Carolina to Kentucky in the year 180:, and from thence to Indiana in 1805, near Brookville ; thence to Decatur county. At the age of twenty one Mr. Tyner was married to Martha McCure, of Franklin county. In 1820 he came to Hancock county, or the territory now comprising the county, which the reader will remember was not organized till eight years afterward; and even Madison, from which Hancock was struck off in 1828, was not organized till 1823. In 1821, September 19, he entered eighty acres of land in Blue river township, being the third entry made in the county. The first entry was made August 10. 1821. by Harmon Warrum, and the second August 23. by James Tyner. In 182: Mr. Tyner married Mary Nelson, who died in 1830. In 1832 he was again married, this time to Sarah Ann Hollerston. Mr. Tyner was one of the staunch pioneers, coming into the county within two years from the first settlement made by the pale-face." As a merchant, he was honest and accommodating, and thereby gained the esteem of all who knew him. Elsewhere we have shown that he was not only a pioneer merchant, stock trader and farmer, but he was the first in the county to give any attention to horticulture, having set out an orchard in the year 1822, according to the best information now at hand. Mr. Tyner also acted as a kind of common carrier between the early settlers and the market. As a father, he was kind-hearted and gentle. Ht: raised a large family, and provided well for them. As a neighbor, he was highly respected on account of his many amiable qualities. In politics, he was a whig and republican, but liberal in his views. He was a Baptist in faith, but by no means a bigot- He liberally supported the church, and every good cause found in him a friend and substantial encouragement. His remains lie buried in Shiloh cemetery, near his home, where loving hands have erected a stately monument to mark his last resting place.
Adam Allen's Pioneer Life
Adam Allen, with his family, came to Blue river township. Hancock county, Indiana, in December, 1827. He moved into a small log cabin covered with clapboards: half of the floor was of rough slabs: the front and other half was simply the earth made smooth and pounded firm. The fire-glace and chimney were very rude, made of rock, mud iiml sticks. It would admit a back log of six or seven feet in length. The loft was made of rough boards.
There was not then a public road in the township; only u path "blazed" through the woods to a distant neighbor's cabin. He had but one neighbor within less than a mile, and that was James Wilson, who had settled two years before on the farm now occupied by Augustus Dennis.
About 1830. while a man moving into the township was crossing the small stream that flows south, asked the name of the creek. Being told that it had none, he said : It is a ' nameless creek;' which name it still retains.
When the Allens came, almost the whole surface of the earth was covered with undergrowth, which consisted of spice brush, pea vines, and coarse grass. Cattle and horses subsisted on it nearly the whole year. Hogs fattened on the mast almost entirely, and were penned only for a few days before killing time, and then that they might be fed a little corn to harden the lard. There was an abundance of wild gooseberries, plums and ginseng. "The latter I have often gathered," says Thompson Allen, his son, •' and dried for market, which sold at about twenty five cents per pound." There were wolves, wild cats, turkeys, and white and black squirrels in great numbers; and in the summer and fall, when the corn was ripening, the daily employment of the boys was to scare the squirrels away from the cornfield.
Mr. Allen's plow was of the old wooden mold-board kind. He cut his wheat with a sickle, and either carried or hauled it on a sled ; then threshed it out with a flail on a dirt floor. If the wind was blowing, lie would clean it by standing and slowly pouring the wheat to the ground in a small stream, letting the wind blow the chaff away.
If there was no wind, then two persons with a sheet would fan while a third poured the wheat.
For several years he had no cook stove ; all the cooking was done by the tire. The johnny-cake board was as common then as a tea-kettle is now.
They had no apples, peaches, or tame fruits, but substituted pumpkins, and, of course, were very familiar with pumpkin pies. Dried pumpkins were laid up in the fall. which served for dessert when they had company or on Sunday mornings for breakfast. On one occasion Mr. Allen went out to a mill on flat Rock, and on his return brought home with him about half a bushel of apples, the first ever seen by the children. The mother gave each of them an apple, and put the rest away in the loft, telling them that, as she now had some flour, they must not touch the apples, and she would make some pies. That night Thompson Allen woke up, and hearing the boards rattle, looked in the direction of the apples, and presently saw something white descending, which proved to be one of his brothers, who could not refrain from the unfrequent temptation of satisfying a keen appetite super induced by that one apple.
The first school-house in the north part of the township was built on the southern part of Noble Warrum's farm, in section six, township fifteen. It was made of logs, and had live corners. It was not chinked and daubed ; had no windows and but one door. A man by the name of Sanford taught the first school therein. The second school was taught by Mr. McPherson. One day a boy had done something contrary to the "rules," and the teacher, to punish him, made him go outdoors and climb up in a dogwood sapling; he then detailed another boy to stand at the foot of the bush and keep him up there.
In 1844," says Thompson Allen. "I commenced teaching school. The price then was about thirty dollar, per term of sixty five days, about ten dollars of it being public money. The law required teachers to have certificates, but the examinations were not very rigid. Once I went to Greenfield to get license. I told the examiner what I wanted. He said: " How long will you be in town? Call before you go home, and I will have them ready. I am busy now.' I called, gave him fifty cents, his fee, and received my license, without being asked a single question.
The first man that preached in the northern part of the township was Father McClain, the father-in-law of Wesley Williams, of Jackson township.
Adam Allen was a strong, robust, honest and honorable man a good representative of the majority of the early settlers of the country.
[We are indebted to Thompson Allen, Esquire, and James K. Allen, teacher, son and grandson of the above, for most of the foregoing facts.]
James L. Binford
James L. Binford was born October 10, 1787, in Prince George county, N-C, and came to Hancock county in 1826, and was one of the first settlers of Blue river township. He was married to Mary Ladd in 1817, by whom he had five children, viz.: Robert, Ann, Joseph, Benjamin, and William L. Mr. B. was married a second time to Jane Binford, to whom were born one child. In politics, Mr. B. was a staunch whig ; and, notwithstanding his father had owned and worked slaves, he was bitterly opposed to the accursed traffic, and never hesitated to denounce it in the strongest terms consistent with his Christian profession. When in health he was regular in attendance at the place of worship with the Society of Friends, the church of his choice, twice or more per week.
Mr. B. was a very plain-spoken man. yet kind-hearted. and ever ready to help the worthy poor. He was also very conscientious, and although he loaned a great deal of money for his tim;, he was never known to accent more than six per cent, interest, nor usury in any form. By industry, strict economy, and the avoidance of all vicious
and luxurious habits, he succeeded in amassing a neat fortune, and was thereby enabled to do much for charitable purposes, and to give each of his five children a quarter of a section of good land, and has much more in ready cash. He died August 19, 1863, aged seventy five years, eleven months and eighteen days, and was buried according to the simple custom of the Friends at the Walnut Ridge burying grounds, in Rush county, Indiana. His first wife died in 1822, and was buried in North Carolina, and his second December 14, 1867, at the age of seventy nine years and nine months, and was buried beside her husband.
Elihu Coffin, Sen.
The subject of this sketch is a native of Clinton county, Ohio. Date of nativity, March 31, 1807. He was principally raised in North Carolina ; came to Milton, Indiana, in 1828 and remained till 1831, when he came to Hancock county, and shared with the few settlers the privations and hardships of frontier life. The roads were to make, the forests were to clear, the wild animals to exterminate, and the physical man to provide with food, clothing and shelter. The first winter Mr. Coffin was in the county he. in common with many others, did without bread for weeks at a time, owing to the mills being frozen up so that they could not grind, there being no steam mills in those days. They lived on potatoes, pumpkins, and wild game.
Mr. Coffin has traveled quite a good deal, has a retentive memory, and takes great pleasure in telling of the sights. From 185010 1852 he lived in Iowa; thence he wended his way across the plains to the gold regions of California, where, for two years, he had an experience brighter in imagination than in reality. From California Mr. C. returned to Iowa, by way of Panama, New York and Chicago. But still not contented with any point yet visited between the Atlantic and Pacific, save on Unfertile, salubrious soil of old Hancock, lie determined in retrace his steps, and accordingly, in 1865, permanently located in Blue river township; where, with the wife of his bosom and the companion of his travels, he is enjoying a peaceful old age; and would, doubtless, take pleasure in telling the reader a hundred fold more than we have recorded.
Mr. C. is a square built, muscular man, a good Mason, a republican, and an orthodox Friend.
Personal Sketch of Augustus Dennis
Mr. Dennis was born in Virginia in June, 1827 ; came to Hancock county in 1844; was married to Miss Jemima C. Tyner in October, 1847. Mr. D. was bred on a farm, and has given that branch of industry his whole attention. He came to the county a poor boy, with only twelve and one half cents in his pocket, and worked at eight dollars per month. He now has a good farm in fine state of cultivation.
Mr. D. is an uncompromising democrat, yet he accords to others what he asks for himself, liberty to think and act for himself. He has ever since early manhood been identified with some religious society, connecting himself first with the Methodists, and later becoming a member of the Friends Society, as it best suited his opinions and convenience, without the sacrifice of any vital principle taught by the church of his first choice.
Mr. D. was elected county commissioner for the first commissioner's district in 1878 over Elisha Earles, a worthy opponent, by 3,000 majority.
He has always taken a decided stand on the side of temperance, both by example and precept, and even hesitated to qualify as commissioner, owing to the relation of the office with the licensing of the traffic.
Sketch of the Pioneer Life of Harmon Warrum.
(Furnished by his son, Honorable Noble Warrum.)
Harmon Warrum was a Kentuckian by birth, the son of an Englishman who went to Kentucky from Pennsylvania in an early day. and who was recognized as an expert with the rifle, and also a proficient backwoodsman, being constantly employed as scout and trailer. He died when the subject of the above sketch was quite it child, leaving him in the care of an uncle, whose name was Thomas Consley. on whom fell the duty of educating him for the stern realities of frontier life which he was destined 10 experience. After arriving at majority, he became a rather cool, self possessed man, endowed with great courage and physical ability. He was quick to resent a wrong and never forgot a kindness. Me was an active, strong man, having fought, wrestled and run with both whites and reds, but never vanquished.
He came to Indiana about the year 1807, and in 1809 nr 1810 married a young lady of English descent, who had lately emigrated from Georgia. Her name was Edith Butler. I was born in 1819, and when about four years of age my father moved to Hancock county (then a part of Madison), and settled 00 Blue River, in the southern part of the county, and took a title for the land now owned and occupied by Dayton II. Gates, Esq. This was the first piece of land entered in the county; he also entered the last piece situated on Swamp Creek, the first on August 10. 1821, and the last on January 16, 1854.
When he first came to Blue river it was a dense wilderness for miles and miles; no sound save the rustling of the leaves, the moaning of the wind, and the angry voice of the storm cloud ; no music broke the calm stillness of the summer air save the buzzing of mosquitoes, the howling of the ravenous wolves, or the fierce yell of the prowling panther; no noisy hum of laboring factories; no clanking hammers in dusty shops. No. the great workhouse of nature, covered with the blue canopy of heaven, walled in only by the horizon, and lit up by nature's lamps, sufficed. Then we heard no ringing of Sabbath church bells ; no locomotive whistle. Had a train of cars passed through the country at that time, the pioneers would have declared it haunted.
Our nearest neighbors, about seven or eight miles distant, living on Brandywine, were the families of Roberts, Montgomery and Stephenson; but after awhile here came the Tyners and Johnses ; also, Penwells, Watts and Wilsons to our immediate neighborhood. But neighbors living then at a distance of eight or ten miles apart were more neighborly than those of to-day in adjoining lots. Well, as neighbors kept coming, cabins were being put up in every direction. Everything in a bustle, and all ai work that could work. The pioneer cabin was cheaply made and easily constructed. Ours was built of round logs. notched to lay closely together; the roof was of four foot clapboards, weighed down by poles laid across each course of boards; then there was what was termed the '"eaves bearer," a log laying parallel with the ends of the cabin, and projecting about eighteen inches over the wall; a good splitting stick was selected, split through the center. placed on the ends of the "eaves bearer," and notched for the roof boards to butt against; this was called the 11 butting pole" ; a door-way was sawed out, and the logs were used as steps ; then a window was cut, a single opening ; we called it a window because it was the largest hole in the cabin to let in the light; it was made by placing sticks across as a frame-work, on which a piece of greased newspaper was placed; through this the light shone like dim moonshine through the room; the chimney was built of sticks and mud, and was called "cat and clay chimney." While this rude nut was being constructed by father, mother, . hired hand from a distance, and my oldest sister, the family were living, with all of their household goods, in a hollow sycamore tree.
After moving into our new house, we furnished it with a couple of one legged bedsteads, produced by father's own hands; and he not being a professional mechanic, they were, consequently, not so stylish as those from the factories of today. But I rested just as easy on them as many do to-day on their seventy five dollar bedsteads.
Then the doors were of puncheons pinned together.
Such a thing as a nail was not to be had. The hinges were of wood, and the door latch, a wooden catch, or trigger, which, when shut, was opened from the outside by [lulling a string, one end of which was fastened to the latch, and the other, passing through a hole in the door above, hung outside, so that those who wished could enter. To lock the door, you would pull the string inside. Hence the stereotyped expression, "the latch-string hangs out."
Hull" the floor, which was made of puncheons lying loosely across the sleepers, was not finished for about a year after we moved into our cabin home. The hired man soon left, declaring that he would stay no longer where the air was black with gnats and mosquitoes. Said he; "If they were the size of me, I would light them; but they are just a little too small and too many to keep company with." I have seen the air darkened by flies, gnats, and mosquitoes, a number of them weighing over a pound : but I can't say that it would take a small number.
The winters passed on slowly, but we had always an excellent supply of venison on hand. Being an excellent marksman, father's table groaned under the abundant supply of turkies and deer; but it was an impossibility to procure salt with which to preserve the venison. It was then necessarily taken through a process called "jerking." This operation was performed by cutting the fleshy parts of the body of the deer, cross grained, into thin slices, which were duly placed on splits and hung inside of our "cat and clay chimney" and garret to dry, after which process it would keep from months to years. When in very great need of salt, father would make his way back to Wayne county in quest of that rare article. I remember on one occasion, after his journey of riding one horse and leading the other, on whose back the salt was strapped, that when we had removed the bag of salt, we removed the hair also, for the brine caused by the melting if" the salt had lain bare the sides of the horse.
The first mill of the neighborhood was at Fall Creek Falls, afterwards called Fall Creek Mills. The distance being about twenty five miles, father imagined it quite convenient for milling. And as he was a skillful backwoodsman, and had some knowledge of the route and locality, it was agreed that h * should take his yoke of oxen and the fore wheels of his wagon, and with a ' turn of corn " for himself and each of his neighbors, cut his may through to Fall Creek Mills. Preparing himself with ammunition and his gun, followed by his trusty dog, he blazed" his way through the thick forest. And after receiving his grinding, he started ,upon his homeward journey ; at night, coralling" his oxen and making his bed under his cart, he made his dog lie at his feet as a protection from the wolves. One night the wolves approached where he was laying, and the poor dog kept crawling higher and higher until he lay on father's face. He awoke and frightened the wolves away. When he returned home, after being absent four or five days, he was sure to bring in some four or five pairs of venison hams, the same number of deer skins, three or four wild cats, and about a dozen raccoon skins. Those deer skins were very useful, as I was clothed almost entirely in buckskin, dressed by my father's hand and cut and sewed with whang, or thongs, by the hand of my mother. Father always kept on hand from six to a dozen dressed deer skins. And when my mother would treat me to a new pair of buckskin breeches, I felt very proud, and would hang on to my old ones as long as possible to save my new ones for Sunday. Occasionally I was presented with a buckskin hunting shirt, a loose at the bottom and tight at the top arrangement similar to a sack coat, having a cape which hung over the shoulders, fringed all around by splitting the cape into threads for some two or three inches from the edges, similar to the fly nets we cover horses with to-day. I have attended dances where all of the young men were incased in their buckskin suits. Then the girls were neatly attired in plain dress. Little did they care for outside show. They lived for something higher than an earthly fancy. They looked not after the fashions of the day. They had pride, it is true, but wisdom too. Their pride was for their home and country, and they labored for its upbuilding. They were good for the sake of goodness, and truer, better wives were never known. And in a few years they became very attractive to me, especially the younger ones. It seems that it did not take as much to beautify them then as now. I thought them the most beautiful of God's creation. None of those humps and tucks and frills, nor ribbon and lace and birds tails placed on top of their heads.
Prayer meetings were organized, to which ladies would walk a distance often of from four to five miles ; but the meetings were held almost always in the day-time. On one occasion it way announced that the Rev. James Havens (father of George) would preach at the widow Smith's cabin, on a certain night. Night meetings being few, I attended, as much through curiosity as anything else, it being a rare thing to hear preaching; it was always exhorting. Some time during service the dogs got to fighting at the door, causing considerable confusion, which soon subsided ; then the Rev. Havens took time to remark that the devil and the dogs always attended night meetings.
Almost every pioneer who attended church on the Sabbath, came with gun on his shoulder; and if a deer or wolf crossed his track, and a favorable opportunity presented, he killed it. They were wide awake and always on the lookout. And thus they were supplied with provisions. Father once killed three deers without, probably. moving from his tracks. The way of it was this: Father was out on a hunting expedition, walking through the forest, gun on shoulder, and I was riding a little distance behind, when we suddenly came upon three good sized deer, one was an old one, while the others were apparently yearlings grazing peacefully along, until the well known crack of my father's rifle laid the old one low ; the fawns stood watching their mater in the agonies of death until father, twice reloading, placed a veil between them and the painful sight, one falling dead on the spot, the other running some fifty yards before falling. I was. on that occasion, on horseback, a very common thing, for the purpose of carrying in the game; frequently coming loaded with a dozen turkies. Usually in cool weather we tore out the entrails from the deer, and placing the end of a pole in the body would run it up a tree, thus preventing the wolves from making a meal of it; and, if there was snow on the ground, we visited them soon, and, lashing them together with withes, hitched them to a horse and dragged them home on the snow. If there was no snow, we took them the best way possible.
Often a bear would lurk forth and attack some lonely pioneer's hog pen, or poultry house, or sheep-fold. Father kept his sheep in a pen a little in the rear of the house. This was to be able to protect them from the wolves, whose growls and snarls were heard many times at the fold. As a surer way of protecting the sheep, father went to Wayne county and procured two savage curs. They could drive away or whip any wolf, but were never able to hold them until assistance arrived. From constant running, dogs were taken with a disease called the "slows." Father thought a great deal of his dogs, but lost them. One was bitten by a rattlesnake and died. It was no uncommon thing to kill from twenty to twenty five black rattlesnakes in a day.
On one occasion my father returned from Shelby (there was no Shelbyville then, there being only a small blacksmith shop where it now stands), followed to the house by a pack of wolves.
Soon after Mr. Penwell settled in our vicinity. He came to father's house one morning and solicited his assistance, telling him that a large bear had attacked his hogs, killing one and devouring it within a stone's throw of the house. They got father's bear dogs on the trail, and followed it as far as the Big Swamp, on Brandywine, where all trace of it was lost, never getting sight of it but once. Our experience in backwoods life was full of such incidents.
A large eagle had built a nest, not far from our house, in a very large sycamore tree. After a great many trials, my father brought his trusty rifle and unerring aim to bear upon this •' monarch of the clouds," and brought him to the ground severely wounded. He was then attacked by the dog, who soon drew off much the worse for the wear, having the skin ripped open at the back and hanging down on either side. When at last he yielded, we stretched his wings apart, to find that they were eleven and one halt feet from tip to tip.
About this time there was a tanyard, the first there had been in the county, established a short distance south of Cleveland, by a Mr. Wood. To this we went for our tanned hog skin, with which we soled our moccasins. It wore very well; but if left too near the fire, the soles would curl up and burst off, and were to be tacked on every morning; so it became necessary for us to rise quite early for that as well as for earning our daily bread, which was some times more than half pumpkins, meal being scarce; this was called pumpkin bread.
Pumpkins being our only fruit, so to speak, we took pains to preserve them. First, we peeled them, hung some of them on poles, placed some of them in the garret, and some in the lower room, to dry. Frequently they were boiled, mashed fine, spread thin and smooth on a board, and dried into what was called " pumpkin leather." This was reserved for use when the pumpkins were gone. This was made into delicious pumpkin pies. The country was new and the people were few; But what there were, were brothers; They'd never eat this savory meat til they shared it with their brothers.
The first physician in my father's house was an old doctor from near where Freeport now stands, an old and venerable physician by name of Dr. Tracy. The second was Dr. Lot Edwards, one of the first doctors in Greenfield. The Settlers in those days were principally their 6 own M. D.'s, using roots and herbs instead of drugs and liquors. The medicinal properties of plants were learned, to a large extent, from straggling Indians, whom the settlers saw quite often, sometimes in small tribes.
These old pioneers, when gathered together, were not quarreling over the political issues of the day. They left that to those occupying the higher positions. They were not in the habit of gathering to listen to flighty orations, but simply sitting around giving their hunting narration's, encounters with bears, struggling against want, and sufferings from mosquitoes. The world turned the same then as now, and turned just as easily, too. And I firmly believe that were our country thrown back into a wild condition, where nature's handiwork alone shone forth: replace these smooth, unbroken meadows with mighty branching oaks, towering maples and spreading beech: let deer, with arched necks and stately step, their haughty antlers bowed as they graze from the abundance of wild grass lining the little rivulet, abound; let the hoarse and angry growls of ever famished wolves be heard; the rustling of the leaves and breaking of limbs, over which the sluggish bears are stalking; together with the life-like cry of unseen panthers, the howling of wild cats and the screaming of eagles, and people it with the same people of to-day, it would go to the dogs, and the people eventually starve. This arises from a different kind of education. Those pioneers were men of iron wills and nerves of steel. They were endowed with a knowledge of the difference between right and wrong. Truth and honesty beamed from every countenance. They were industrious as well as adventurous. Though they loved the wild and savage backwoods life, they were working for the promotion of civilization. They knew none but the school of experience. At their touch the mighty monarchs of the forest turned to dust and ashes. At their glance the wild beast cowered. For their children and their posterity they toiled and denied themselves the luxuries of civilized life. "The latch string always hung outside of the door," so that the weary pilgrim of life might enter. You had but to ask, and you would receive. They toiled. They practiced self denial. For what? For their children. For the upbuilding of a civilized country. Have they not achieved success? Look around you. Whence came these cities and towns, with their factories and shops and mills and beautiful buildings and churches? Whence came these lovely farms, with their orchards of luscious fruits, their fields of waving corn, their ripe meadows, and gem-like lots of golden wheat? Had you an ear for nature's song, these would fill your ears with praises for those hardy pioneers, some of whom, much to the discredit of those for whom they toiled, are still in the field, a few of them barely keeping want from their doors. They lived, as God intended you and I and every one should live, by the sweat of the brow, determined to earn their bread before eating it. Many of them, like Columbus, never lived to enjoy what they achieved, but we hope are repaid by heavenly comfort.
William H. Porter
The subject of this sketch was born May 10, 1810, near Dayton, Ohio. He came to Fayette county with his parents at the age of eighteen.
He run on the river as flat boatman for four years from Kanawha Salt Springs, W. Va., to New Orleans, at fifty cents per day.
In 1832 he came to Hancock county and entered one hundred and sixty acres of land in Brandywine township, where he remained till his death, in 1866.
His remains rest in Mt. Lebanon cemetery, near his farm.
He was a successful, prosperous farmer in his time.
He raised three sons. J. W. and F. M. Porter are both respectable citizens and prosperous farmers in their native township. William H. Porter is engaged in butchering in Greenfield
Mrs. Isaac Roberts.
This good lady, the mother of John Roberts, is the oldest resident citizen in Brandywine township, having come to the "new purchase" prior to the organization of the territory into Madison county and settled on the farm now owned by Marion Steele.
She was married in New York just at the close of the war of 1812. Her husband was a faithful, valiant soldier of said war. They came through on foot, carrying their effects, and crossed the Ohio River in an Indian canoe. They settled in the dense forest, making a temporary room by piling brush against a large log and covering it with ' bark until they could erect a small pole cabin.
There was at that time no roads, and not a mill within thirty five miles. Beat hominy, venison and spice wood tea were the chief eatables.
During the Indian troubles following the " Indian massacre" in Madison county, of which this later formed a part, her husband and Mr. Rambo went to Pendleton, the county seat at that time, to attend the trial and act as guards. There was great uneasiness all over the country at this time, the whites not knowing at what time they might be murdered but the justly indignant Indians. These two women remained alone during their husbands' absence at the trial, a full account of which will be found further on. During this time one evening Mrs. Roberts, hearing considerable noise, opened the door to discover the trouble, when Mrs. Rambo, more thoughtful, bid her come in, which she did just in time to escape the jaws and claws of a hungry panther, which prowled around and over the cabin and against the door till the morning light.
Mrs. Roberts tells of another narrow escape from a panther on a certain occasion when she and her little boy, eight or ten years of age, were in the rye patch. She was laying up the gap, when the little boy said, "Mother, what is that in the weeds?" She, seeing that it was a panther just in the act of springing on the boy, snatched him from the spot, and, putting him in front of her, made for the house ; but it was not so easy to escape the cunning of the blood-thirsty panther, which intercepted their path in the rye and sprang for the boy, who, being active, barely succeeded in escaping unhurt. The mother, in seeing the ferocious beast alight on the spot where her darling boy had just saved a precious life, was so frightened that she was unable, for some time, to move from the spot
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