1884 LAKE COUNTY INDIANA HISTORY
Source: Lake County, Indiana, 1884 : an account of the semi-centennial
celebration of Lake County, September 3 and 4, with historical papers and other interesting records prepared for
Authors: T H B; E H Woodard; Tuthill King; Charles W Cathcart
City of Publication: Crown Point, Ind.
Publisher: Printed at the Lake County Star Office
Transcribed by K. Torp
Probably the first reference to a "semi-centennial celebration of the settlement of our county" was made twelve years ago near the close of a former volume, "Lake County, 1834 to 1872."It was then considered sure that in the ordinary course of events there would be this year a special "gathering of the sons and daughters of Lake."
The Old Settlers' Association of the county, as was natural and appropriate, took the lead in arranging for such a celebration. They appointed a committee of arrangements consisting of George Willey, O. Dinwiddie. H. Dickinson, Charles Marvin, Frank Gibson, Nathan Wood, H. Keilman, Augustus Wood, Joseph Small, Jacob Wise, and S. W. Shuneman, which committee reported at the annual meeting of the association in 1883.
The committee to whom was referred the consideration of arrangements for our semi-Centennial Celebration, report the following:
That we hold next, fall in the early autumn of 1884, a CELEBRATION, commemorating the early settlement of our county. and reviewing its 50 years of growth.
1. That we invite to take part with us in such celebration not only all of the present citizens of the county, but all those who have gone forth from our borders and have become citizens in other counties and states; and especially all the old pioneers of Lake and their descendants, and all who were born in Lake county and are now citizens in other counties: and that we extend to the pioneer settlers and their descendants the hospitalities of this Association; and that in thus inviting home for a REUNION all the sons and daughters of Lake, we assure to them all a share in the well known hospitality of the citizens of our county.
That such invitation be issued in the name of this Association. through a special committee of invitation, making use of the best available means of communication with those whom we invite. Committee of invitation: George Willey, James H. Luther. Bartlett Woods, Amos Hornor, T. A. Wason, John Brown, T. Serjeant, T. H. Ball, H. Beckman, Mrs. M. J. Dinwiddie. Mrs. Eliza Marvin, Mrs. J. Fisher, Parley A. Banks.
4. That for the purpose of securing a full review of our fifty years of history and growth, we recommend the assignment of the following subjects to the individuals named, requesting them to prepare carefully written articles, historical papers and essays on the subjects assigned, that the whole may be ready for publication in a SEMI-CENTENNIAL VOLUME, which volume may transmit to succeeding generations the memorials of the celebration and the gathered results of our first fifty years of growth.
Subjects assigned and names of writers:
1. The Pioneer Settlers, their Homes and Habits, their Descendants and Influence. Bartlett Woods.
2. The Last Twelve years of Growth, 1872 to 1884. George Willey.
3. Crown Point, 1884 to 1884. T. II. Ball.
4. Reminiscences of Eagle Creek. Mrs. S. J. Montieth.
5. West Creek Reminiscences. Mrs. J. Fisher.
6. Lake Prairie. Mrs. N. Ames.
7. East Cedar Lake. E. B. Warriner.
8. Man at the Red Cedar Lake. T. H. Ball.
9. The Flora and Fauna of Lake, of the Marsh, the Woodlands, and the Prairies. Edwin W. Dinwiddie and Herbert S. Ball.
10. The Kankakee River, its Peculiarities, its Marsh Land "and Islands, "Swamping." John Brown, T. J. Wood.
11. The Calumet, its Indian and Trapper History.
12. Our Three Court Houses. Henry Pettibone.
13. Our Northern Borders. J. H. Luther.
14. Address to Members of Old Settlers' Association. T. J. Wood.
15. Historical Oration. T. H. Ball.
16. The Catholic History of Lake. George Gerlach.
17. The Lutheran History. Henry Sasse, Jun.
18. The Methodist History of Lake. Mrs. S. G. Wood.
19. The Presbyterian History. Miss Florence Pratt, Mrs. Edith Griffin.
20. The Baptist History. Jerome Dinwiddie.
21. The "Christian "History. H.Dickinson.
22. The Hollanders in Lake.
23. The Band History. Mrs. H. Hay ward.
24. The Believers. W. A. Clark.
25. The Unitarian History. W. F. Rifenburg.
26. Our Sunday Schools. Mrs. J. P. Merrill.
27. Our Public School History. Miss Helen Cleveland, Miss H. Winslow.
28. South East Grove. John Brown.
29. Cedar Lake as a Pleasure Resort. James H. Ball.
30. Early and Late Public Men. Dr. L. G. Bedell.
31. Our Railroads. H. Wason.
32. Our Exports. D. Turner.
33. Contributions solicited from any others who have memorials, or recollections, or unrecorded facts.
5. That for the instruction and entertainment of the young people of the county and to recall to our own minds more vividly those hospitable days of squatter and frontier life, we request some of the old settlers to exhibit in tents or cabins, pioneer life with "the latch string out;"and also request the exhibition of old implements of household and agricultural ?se.
6. We suggest in conclusion, that two days be devoted to this half century celebration
GEORGE WILLEY, Chairman. The above report was adopted.
Acting in accordance with this report the Committee of Invitation issued the following circular.
LAKE COUNTY SEMI-CENTENNIAL.
The members of the Old Settlers' Association of Lake county, Indiana, hereby invite all the pioneers of Lake county, now living, and all the descendants of the pioneer settlers, their sons and daughters, sons-in-law and daughters-in-law; and all who were born in Lake county or who have been at any time citizens of the county, wherever they may be now residing; and also our neighbors and friends in Porter county and Illinois, who were sharers with us in pioneer experiences; to meet with us at Crown Point, on Wednesday and Thursday, September 3rd and 4th, 1884 to hold with us a re-union; and to aid in celebrating this fiftieth year of the settlement of our county. All the present citizens of the county, who are not members of our Association, are also here-by invited to take part and to aid in this our first semi-centennial celebration. And to them and to all, to all who are now residents of other counties and states, who may then meet with us, we are authorized to extend an assurance of a cordial and a hearty welcome, and of a generous share in those hospitalities which the representatives of our early settlers know so well how to give.
Appropriate exercises have been arranged for this celebration of the settlement of our county and this review of 50 years of growth; and room will also be given for the incidents and recollections that may be brought from distant regions of the South and West, as for the first time Lake county invites all her sons and daughters home.
The Committee of Arrangements appointed to aid them in their work the following committees:
On preparing Seats at the Fair Ground, H. Sasse Jan., George Krinbill, C. Manahan, John Fisher, and James Doak.
On Music, T. A. Muzzall and Jacob Wise.
On Antiquities, Relics, and Curiosities, Lewis G. Little, E. P. Ames, Mrs. M. J. Hyde, Mrs. J. Fisher, and John Beckman.
On Pioneer Display, Amos Hornor, J. H. Luther, and Alfred Edgerton.
On Hospitalities, Wm. Krimbill, Mrs. T. Fisher, Mrs. Dr. Pratt, Mrs. S. Witherell, and Mrs. O. Wheeler.
On Programme, T. H. Ball.
Appointed as Marshal, S. Allen. Also, appointed John Fisher as member of this Committee in the place of George Willey, .deceased, and Henry Sohl of Hammond as a member for the new North township.
II. THE CELEBRATION
On Wednesday, September 3d, the morning dawned as pleasantly as could be desired. The early and even the late autumn is usually very pleasant around the southern curve of Lake Michigan. At sunrise the town bells were rung and the stars and stripes were unfurled to the breeze on the top of the court-house.
The people from town and country began to gather in due season at the Fair Ground. A fresh breeze sprang up which made speaking in the open air more difficult: but which sent the waters in the little lake on the grounds, known as Fancher's Lake, dancing merrily in the bright sunshine.
The officers of the Old Settlers Association became officers of the Semi-centennial Celebration without any formal vote, and the public exercises were opened at the stand in the grove, in due form, at about 10:30 A. M.
The Secretary of the Association being absent- Henry Sasse, Jun. -Harry Church was chosen Secretary, Hon. Bartlett Woods presiding.
Prayer was offered by the Rev. T. H. Ball, as the acting chaplain of the Association, the assembly joined in singing Dr. Smith's beautiful hymn "My Country 'tis of Thee,"words of greeting and of welcome were spoken by the President, some letters from invited guests were read, and then commencing at 11:30 the following oration was delivered by the Rev. T. H. Ball, who had been appointed by the Committee of Arrangements.
FELLOW-CITIZENS OF LAKE COUNTY.
Semi-centennials, centennials, bi-centennials, and quarti-centennials are common in our day. We have our wooden, tin, crystal, silver, golden, and diamond weddings. Pleasant, instructive gatherings all, not only reminding us of the rapid flight of time; but leading us to cultivate our social natures more fully, in this active, earnest, inventive, practical, and money-making age. "We need in this, our intensely busy American life, in this wonderful land, where cities like Chicago grow in a single life time, "where such a net work of rail-roads as now in every direction crosses our country, can be constructed in fifty years, where millionaires are to be found in every large city, and commercial, agricultural, and manufacturing interests have unfolded within fifty years beyond all former example in the world's history:-we need the influence of large social gatherings to soften and enlarge our hearts: we need the gatherings themselves to call us from our close application to business and professional life back to the still living facts that we have social natures and can meet together and enjoy existence under the blue dome of heaven simply as human beings, bound together by the large ties of humanity, of common brotherhood, of our own dear and glorious land. In the older, or rather the younger days, in what some are pleased to call the classic lands of the old world, social life had characteristics like our own, but was developed and cultivated in very different forms. The large assemblies in ancient Greece were called together to witness athletic contests, to hear new poems and histories, to look upon new works of art, at the Olympic, the Pythian, the Isthmian, and the Nemean games. In ancient Rome the hundreds of thousands met to look upon triumphal processions, as some new conqueror passed in his chariot with his splendid retinue along the streets of republican and then imperial Rome; or to witness in the immense amphitheaters gladiatorial and wild beast conflicts. And then largely the artisans, and the tillers of the soil, and the domestics in the homes were serfs and slaves. Yet further east and further back in the world's history, the same ruling classes and the great multitudes met for feasting, for revelry, and for the corrupting rites of a voluptuous and often cruel religion, where human blood was freely shed. The same sun that shines down upon us, shone, and with no more brightness, on the yellow Tiber when the mighty multitudes assembled in old Rome, and upon the blue waves of the bright Aegean sea when the great, crowds were gathered in ancient Greece, and on the Euphrates, the Tigris, and the mighty Ganges, when unknown thousands met in palace court-yards, around spacious temples, in consecrated but impure groves, in the long wide streets, to hold their festivals, to offer human victims in sacrifice to the sun, or to see multitudes crushed beneath the ponderous Juggernaut car. No brighter was the sunshine "on the hills of Greece"when "Homer sang and Sappho wept,"than over our broad prairies now; "the long gleam upon the ancient Nile"blazed in no "richer radiance to the noon when history's old father gazed upon it,"than on Lake Michigan year by year it flashes now upon the dancing waves; but a far different form of civilization is now making colossal strides over all the world, and the thousands meet to view the results and celebrate the triumphs of modern enterprise and art and skill, of brain and muscle, in the peaceful avocations of a richer and a nobler life. As American freemen, American peers of our mighty realm, without a serf, without a slave, without a titled noble, we meet today, citizens of this county of Lake, to review the results, to celebrate the achievements of our first fifty years of existence as an American community. It is not fifty years of civil life, but of social, settler, civilized life, that we this year commemorate.
In a country as large as ours, consisting, in states, territories, and island possessions, of some fifty large divisions, there must be many interesting, attractive, and peculiar localities. The northwestern county of Indiana, which bears the name of Lake, situated, as it is, so near the fourth, we might say third large city of the country, has at least this peculiarity; that no direct line of railroad from Maine to Florida, on all the Atlantic coast, nor from the states this side, nor from a state between Lake Michigan and the Gulf, except a small part of western Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alabama, can enter the city of Chicago without passing across the limits of this county of Lake. Nearly every railroad passenger then and nearly all the freight, entering and leaving Chicago, to and from three and twenty states, must cross our borders. Our sand hills and our prairies may well be known to half the country. Small as is our territory compared with the whole land, a little more than one eight thousandth part, it is yet large enough to hold an army of more than 1,500,000,000 (1,548,800, 000) or more, than all the inhabitants now upon all the earth, and give to each one, for standing room, nine square feet. Without a mountain, with no large hills, except the sand bluffs of the shore of Lake Michigan, made up of woodland and groves, of prairie and marsh land, it is naturally well watered and sufficiently fertile for all the needs of civilized man. With one great lake to wash its northern borders, and half a dozen small ones, furnishing a home for fish and fowl, scattered within, with a small vet noted river skirting its southern limits, and a double river crossing from east to west and from west to east, with a still smaller river bearing away floods of snow water in the spring time, with three large creeks, five smaller ones, and a few brooks and branches, with from five hundred to a thousand little marshes, grassy, with clear water, one or more to each square mile, no Indian could have needed a better home for fish, for wild fowl, and for fur. Sixteen miles from east to west and about thirty-two from north to south, with some grand lake views, some fine woodland scenery, and some beautiful prairie landscape views, over verdure as rich as grows in the north Mississippi Valley; such is our county, the land whose earliest settlement today we commemorate, over which, as a county, in Mediaeval Europe, an earl, a count, or a count palatine, would have exercised dominion. A county is an earldom no longer, but a portion of a state or kingdom, a shire, separated from the rest for its own administration of justice, and for carrying on some separate civil affairs, having its own county courts, its shire-town, and its court house.
Fifty years ago our Red Brothers remained as occupants of this soil, although two and fifty years ago the Indian title, so called, was here extinguished. It is fitting today that we should give to them, our immediate predecessors, some attention and some thought. Some of their remains and of their rude arts will be here presented before your eyes. Questions of deep interest are connected with that singular race called the North American Indians. How came they on this continent? When did they come? Did they descend from one of the sons of Noah? Did they exterminate a still earlier race, the Mound Builders? But all these questions must be left now unanswered. Our pioneer settlers found here the Pottawatomies; not, as far as we know them, the most advanced, most warlike, certainly not the most noted, of the hundreds of the tribes of Red men. They could trap, hunt and fish; they could fight, could dance, and smoke the pipe of peace; they had been in contact with French missionaries and fur traders and with representatives of the American Government; they had known for a few generations, some of the virtues and some of the vices of the Whites, and had it is feared, learned the latter more rapidly than the former. They were still, in disposition and modes of life, not far removed from those who had seen La Salle and Hennepin, Marquette and Joliet, and their associates and followers. If not wholly "untutored,"they were still the Red Men of the wilds. Here were their hunting grounds, here some of their favorite trapping resorts; and here we found their trails, their dancing floors, their village encampments, their garden spots, their small vineyards, their burial grounds. Some interesting and some beautiful incidents of these, our predecessors, have been preserved elsewhere; and our latest interest in regard to them must rest around their burial homes, their relics and remains. Well does Whittier say:
"Who shall deem the spot unblessed Where Nature's younger children rest, Lulled on their sorrowing mother's breast ? Deem ye that mother loveth less These bronzed forms of the wilderness She foldeth in her long caress? As sweet o'er them her wild flowers blow. As if with fairer hair and brow The blue-eyed Saxon slept below."
Although one burial mound, containing either Indians or Mound Builders, has been accidentally despoiled of its long ago deposited human forms, I am glad that the later Indian burial place still lies undisturbed beside the crystal waters of the Lake of Cedars. No true-hearted American can wish to forget that on this soil of North America once roamed, once lived and loved, the Red children of this New World. Sharing as we have done in that fearful but providential work of the extermination of such large numbers of this singular race, we will also share in handing down their memory and some knowledge of their arts and virtues to the generations of the future. And so we come to the White race, the pioneers and the settlers who began fifty years ago to enter these, then truly, beautiful Indian and trapper wilds.
Without doubt the first white explorers here were French, who as early as 1679 passed in canoes down the Kankakee, and some of whom, the noted, resolute, ill-fated La Salle, with three other Frenchmen and an Indian hunter, passed on foot across our borders in the spring of 1680; among whose records of travel is found for the first time the name of "Chekagou,'"as applied to that little stream, then no doubt, of limpid water like our little Calumet, on which is now a great city. The command over this whole region from Lake Michigan to the Spanish possessions in Mexico was conferred by the king of France upon La Salle in 1684, two hundred years ago. And until the treaty at Paris in 1763 our region formed a part of the Large French possessions in North America. French settlements were made in various places; but none, so far as appears, within our limits. Soon after the war of the Revolution the pioneer explorers from the Atlantic coast began their long westward march, a march that led soon to the settlement of Ohio, southern Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi, and which was not to cease till their descendants crossed the great rivers and the Rocky Mountains and reached the shores of the Pacific, filling up at length all that lay between. But only the Indians, trappers, and fur-traders were here as sojourners on our soil until after the purchase from the Pottawatomies in 1832. We date our beginning of actual settlement in 1834; yet there is now evidence, which has lately come to light, that at least one family, the first to open a farmers home in what is now Lake county, spent the winter of 1833 and 1834 on section six, in township thirty-five, range seven west, now in the township of Hobart, formerly in that of Ross.
The name of this pioneer was WILLIAM ROSS. The Bennett family had opened a way side inn near the mouth of the Calumet, the site afterward selected for Indiana City, in 1833, on the lake shore stage road, opened it is believed as a stage line this year. Another log cabin stage hotel was opened in the spring of 1834 by the Berry family, the house being afterward kept by Hannah Berry, the name and locality probably being preserved in Berry Lake. That the Ross family actually spent here the winter of 1833 I assert upon the unquestionable authority of a most credible and yet living witness, JAMES HILL, who visited that family in their cabin in February, 1834. On the way he stopped at Benjamin McCarty's in Porter county. He met a gang of Indians between McCarty's and the Ross place. The winter was cold. He found, in exploring the region, a few wigwams of Indians near the mouth of Deep river and on the Calumet, and going into one wigwam to warm himself he noticed particularly that one squaw had a playful young child about a year old. These Indians could talk but little English. Their wigwams were made of matting placed around poles planted in the ground, and the door way, in this winter time, was protected by a blanket. This William Ross came from Decatur county, Indiana. He raised a crop of corn on Terra Coupee Prairie in the summer of 1833. His family were not all with him, as his children were then grown up to manhood and womanhood. He was afterwards killed by the falling of a bee-tree. I have given these particulars thus minutely because some of our pioneers have doubted the statement that any pioneer farmer resided in Lake county so early as this winter of 1833.
In the summer of 1834, fifty full years after the close of that war which extinguished the claims of England to this region over which for eighty years the French held a nominal control, and which England held for about twenty years, fifty years ago this past summer, surveyors under the United States government, but including no young Washington among them, laid out our lands m the usual United States divisions of townships and sections. These townships we call "congressional,"each containing thirty-six sections or thirty-six square miles. These surveyors found here no boarding houses, no beds, no tables and chairs, no butchers shops, no provision stores. They found wild, open prairie and leafy groves, with here and there an Indian encampment, squaws and children and grazing ponies. So their provisions and simple furniture as well as camp equipage and instruments this surveying party carried with them. Next came those whom we have learned to call "claim seekers," men seeking locations on the newly surveyed Government lands. Among these we have the now historic names of WILLIAM B. CROOKS, making his claim, near the home of William Ross, in June of 1834, and in company with him SAMUEL MILLER, these selecting "Timber and Mill Seat"and some of the foundation timber of "Millers Mill"can be seen on this fiftieth year down in the clear water of Deep River. Also-WINCHELL from La Porte county, who commenced a mill near the mouth of Turkey Creek. Then we have RICHARD FANCHER, and ROBERT WILKINSON with two nephews, who coming from the Wabash valley just fifty years ago this very month, passed over all the central portions of our county, finding no settlers, seeing no Indians, the first named, Richard Fancher, who alone still remains among us, eighty-four years of age, making his claim around yonder little lake, including this very land which is now the Fair Ground of our county, finding afterward that unfortunately for him on this noted section Seventeen had been laid an "Indian float."We have next WILLIAM BUTLER from the eastward, and then BROWN and two HORNORS, DAVID and THOMAS, from the Wabash region, THOMAS GUILDERS and SOLON ROBINSON, HENRY WELLS and LUMAN A. FOWLER, JESSE PIERCE and DAVID PIERCE, and ROBERT WILKINSON of Deep River. Most of these became this same year or early in the next actual settlers. And these were followed year by year by many others, whose names time will not allow me to mention, until in 1840, with a population of 1468, our pioneer settlement, according to the rules of the Old Settlers Association, closed. The land sale had passed and we were "squat-ters"no longer. Yet year after year other settlers came, until from two households in 1838, and ten or twelve in 1834. two hundred in 1887, and six hundred in 1847. We now count about four thousand families. In 1837 two hundred and forty-nine persons were assessed for taxation, twenty-three of whom were over age for poll tax. In 1846 there were assessed six hundred; and in 1871 more than eighteen hundred.
And these early and later settlers of our county,
WHENCE CAME THEY?
Well did some one say that the nations of Europe were sifted to obtain the seed for planting the early American colonies. And not yet, it may be, has the sifting ceased. Into our bounds they came, pioneers from the southward, descendants at least of those who settled in Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee, the genuine Hoosiers of our state; men accustomed to use the long Kentucky rifle, who were skilled in shooting what they called "prairie"chickens, who did a large amount of "reckoning," whose women and children found it difficult "to get shut" of the ague, and who, when they held secrets of their own and were in the presence of others whom the facts might or might not concern, "never let on." Well did these understand and practice the virtue of primitive hospitality, loading their tables with food but not with display; lighting the supper tables with lamps made of iron spoons, a piece of cloth for the wick, a little gravy from the skillet for the oil and for the lamp stand a crevice between the logs of the cabin in which the mistress of ceremonies inserted the handle of the spoon. From this primitive contrivance arose what was called the "Hoosier lamp."
And there also came families from many eastern states, from Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York; and others from New England, bringing with them their intelligence, their enterprise, their untiring energy: the children of the latter doing much shrewd "guessing," and when they would say, I "saw" something, instead of using the provincialism "I seen it," would be met by the question from some of the other children, a question supposed sufficient to settle the matter of language, "Did you "saw" it clean in two?" Surprised, but not much abashed, the young New Englanders held on to "saw" and "did" in the place of "seen" and "done," laughing in their sleeves and in their own log cabins at the odd expressions which every day met their young ears.
And next there came the men, women, and children, in European garb and with European language, polite courteous, and kindly, for they were seeking homes among the "native born," they were planting themselves in the wilds of a new land, of a New World, and they came as Mrs. Hemans says in her beautiful Sons; of Emigration,
"Filling with triumph the sunny air.'' they came saying in substance, if they did sometimes think of the old European homes, too we will rear new homes under trees that-glow As if gems were the fruitage of every bough; O'er our white walls we will train the vine, And sit in its shadow at day's decline; And watch our herds as they range at will, Through the green savannahs all bright and still."
They came from the banks of the Rhine and from many of the kingdoms of then divided Germany, the industrious, sturdy Germans, the countrymen of Luther, and Schiller, and Goethe, and Kepler, and Humboldt, they came Catholic and Lutheran, bringing with them and singing at nightfall around their household fires and on their night journeyings the songs of the fatherland, of the Rhine valleys and of the old historic times: they came also from "the merry homes of England;" from the land of Bruce and Burns where they sing "the sweetest of all Scotia's holy lays;"from the emerald isle the noted green Erin, where the trefoil, the shamrock grows; they came from cold, freedom loving Sweden, the countrymen of Linnaeus and Gustavus Adolphus, of Jenny Lind and of Christine Nillson; from the neighboring shores of small but noted Denmark; and, last of all, they came from the villages and fields of Holland, the sturdy, industrious, patient, plodding, indomitable Dutch, the descendants of those who fought for eighty years for the blessings of religious freedom. From yet other states and lands some came; all here to become Americans, all here to aid in building up this northwestern corner of our now wealthy and influential state.
WHAT, NOW, HAVE ALL THESE ACCOMPLISHED?
The answer to this question will be the story of our growth for our first fifty years; and to condense this as fully as will be needful for this day I shall make only three eras as marked out by our three c Dart-houses. And these will be for us the three eras of our land.
The era of the log court-house extends to 1850.
It includes the six years of pioneer settlement, years which brought into our county nearly fifteen hundred inhabitants, years in which the log cabins with their stick and mud chimneys were built in the woodland and groves and on the edge of the prairies, seldom far from the shelter of the oak and the hickory trees, years in which the large breaking plows drawn by four and five yoke of oxen turned over thousands of acres of the green. sward of the prairie, years in which roads were laid out and opened and mills and bridges built, and neighborhoods were formed and courts for the first time were held and school and church life commenced. Years also in which domestic animals, mainly horses, cattle, hogs. and poultry, coming with the pioneers, learned here the "ranges," and found also homes, none of these in those years straying far out into the prairie, neither man nor beast seeking there a home, but leaving those wilds for the grass and flowers, for the polar plant, for the grouse and deer and wolves. This era includes also the ten years of slower growth, from 1840 to 1850, the years that followed the "land sale," years in which encroachments were slowly made upon the open prairie by the growing herds of cattle, and the new settlers that came, in which brick-kilns were burned, frame buildings erected, literary and temperance societies organized, school and church houses built, flocks of sheep brought in; but years in which the two markets were Michigan City and Chicago, and all produce, which began in 1840 to be sent to market, and all goods brought in, were transported by means of ox and horse teams. It was a series of years in which very little money could be made by farming, and yet our population increased in these ten years to about four thousand. It was on the whole a slow, plodding era. But settlements were established at Crown Point, Brown's Point, Wiggin's Point, Hickory Point; on the east and west side of Cedar Lake, on the west side of West Creek, and along Cedar Creek and Eagle Creek; at School Grove, South East Grove, Pleasant Grove, Plum Grove, and Orchard Grove; on Western Prairie, Center Prairie, Eagle Creek Prairie, Lake Prairie, and Robinson's Prairie; on Deep River, and on the Sand Ridge, and near the Calumet.
The frame court-house was built in 1849, and with 1850 commenced indeed a new era. Over thirty years, until 1880, this era extends, the era of railroads, of towns and villages, of enlarged facilities for agriculture, manufactures, and trade. First came the Michigan Central Rail Road from Detroit, across the southern peninsula of Michigan, giving us a station on Deep River called Lake; and now the steam whistle was heard for the first time where had been the scream of the eagle and the sharp notes of water fowl; and the people of the county soon ascertained that they were in close connection by rail and wire, with the Atlantic seaboard. The Michigan Southern road soon followed, and then the Joliet Cut Off, the Pittsburg and Fort Wayne, the Great Eastern or Pan Handle, the Baltimore and Ohio, and then the Grand Trunk. The Michigan Central, by means of a coach line connecting Lake with Crown Point, gave to the county seat a daily mail; soon a daily mail coach between Crown Point and Lowell gave to that growing town the same facilities; and the Fort Wayne road gave the same to Hobart, which soon, now, began to take its place among the four principal towns and business centers of the county, Dyer on the Cut Off, becoming also a large shipping point, having a daily mail and other rail-road advantages. This era marks the principal growth of our towns and villages, giving us in all twenty-four, fifteen of them being also rail-road stations.
Farming, stock-raising and dairy products now began to be profitable, hay became a valuable article of export, and the farming community began on the line of accumulation which has placed most of them now in independent circumstances, so that, whether they wake or sleep, work in summer or rest and care for their stock in winter, still their wealth increases. Those who now own unencumbered farms in the county of Lake ought to be satisfied with their progress of accumulation. The impetus given to agriculture and stockraising by means of the rail-road transportation brought almost to the doors of the farmers led to still larger encroachments upon the areas of the open prairie. The New Hampshire settlement was made in 1855 in the very heart of Lake Prairie; settlement spread westward to the center of Robinson's Prairie; board fences and hedges and wire fences were constructed; Lake Prairie was nearly all enclosed by 1870, Robinson's Prairie northeast of Crown Point by 1871, and the broad southern portion of that prairie, between Porter county and Lowell, southward from Crown Point to the Kankakee region, by 1872. The wolves and the deer were exterminated or driven away to wilder resorts, no place was left where the grouse could in safety make their nests and watch over their broods, no room was left for the sand-hill cranes to occupy in holding their councils and their dances, the polar plant and the phlox and the other rich flowering plants of the wild prairie were destroyed; and fields and gardens and orchards, and pastures and grazing herds, and the busy homes of the Anglo-Saxon race, and groups of merry children in their sports, and the white school houses with their bee like hum of busy children and watchful teachers, took the place of all the wild, free life that once characterized our beautiful prairies.
Although ours is largely an agricultural and stock-raising community, yet other interests sprang up in this enterprising, railroad period. Two brothers, Thomas and William Fisher, coming from the eastward in 1850, started at South East Grove a broom factory, making sometimes fifty thousand brooms a year; and removing at length to Crown Point Thomas Fisher has continued through all these thirty years the same profitable industry. Joseph Hack in 1852 bought the smith and wagon shop of Major Farwell at Crown Point, and he has carried on and enlarged that profitable business through all the period over which we are passing now. Wagons and carriages of excellent workmanship, of tried durability, go forth every year in numbers sufficiently large to supply the home demand. At Hobart brick-making became the leading industry, four thousand dollars a month having been at one time paid out there to the workmen. Two large brick making establishments at Crown Point and one at Lowell have furnished material for home building. About 1869 the State Line Slaughter House was opened on the Calumet where in 1872 some eighteen men were employed and three or four car loads of beef were daily shipped to Boston. This place became in 1873 the town of Hammond; and this special business of sending beef to the East and to Europe has assumed immense proportions. The ice business of our county is also a large industry; as is the shipment of sand, and, in July and August, the shipment of berries. Time will not allow me to speak of other smaller industries, as the Warner Water Elevator and Purifier, an industry by no means small, the wagon and harness shops, the mills, the sash door and blind factories, and fulminating powder works; all the northern portion of the county, not inviting for tillage, promising now to become a stirring, thriving manufacturing region over its whole extent, having suitable locations for three large cities.
Nor will the rapidly passing, precious, and, I hope, long to be remembered hours of this September day, allow me to more than name the facts that in this period of rapid growth we began to erect three and four thousand dollar country homes, like the Dittmers dwelling at Cedar Lake, and the residences of George Willey, Mrs. Crawford, and Mrs. Dinwiddie; that large barns and grain houses were built; that cheese and butter factories were established; that many church buildings and good school houses were constructed, the town of Lowell, without a rail-road taking in this particular the lead, erecting fine brick churches and the first large, two story brick school house of the county at a cost of eight thousand dollars, erecting also at the same cost, a three story factory, eighty feet by fifty which was in 1872 the largest building in the county; that large brick blocks of city style began to be built at Crown Point and that Cheshire Hall was opened for public gatherings, in which so many noted lecturers addressed large audiences, and in which was held for a large part of one winter the most similarly attractive religious meeting connected with our history; that new stores were opened in our twenty towns and villages; that we passed with a noble record through those exciting years of the civil war; and that our county periodicals, our photograph galleries, our Agricultural Society and county fairs, our lodges of various kinds, our Old Settlers' Association, and most of our literary societies, belong to this same period of railroad growth, of the frame ten thousand dollar court-house.
And I name now the last era of our history.
The era of the Brick Court-House.
The corner stone was laid with imposing ceremonies in September, 1878. The building was completed in 1879; and so this era begins with the full year of 1880. Our first era comprised fifteen full years, with our central public building costing perhaps five hundred dollars. Our second comprised thirty full years, with our central building costing some ten thousand dollars. Five years only have passed of our present, third era with a brick and stone court-house costing some fifty-two thousand dollars. May this remain for a hundred years. These buildings and these county outlays show the progress we have made. Corresponding in style with the court-house, in 1882 our commissioners erected what has been called "one of the best county jail buildings in the State," of brick, iron, and steel, costing twenty thousand dollars. Corresponding with the same grade of and designed by the same architect, the town of Crown Point erected in 1880 a public school building at a cost of twenty thousand dollars; two six thousand dollar family residences have lately been built in Crown Point, the one by Dr. Higgins and his son-in-law. Senator Youche, the other by Amos Allman, the latter completed in 1883; and this year we have erected a county-house for the poor of our county, one hundred and seventy-six feet in length, at a cost of some fifteen thousand dollars. And Mrs. Biggs, the daughter of A. N. Hart of Dyer, is now building; at Crown Point a seven thousand dollar residence for herself and her mother. Similar improvements also are taking place in the country, as well as in other towns. Charles Marvin, a well known and wealthy pioneer, now seventy-three years of age, removing from his old home to the east side of West Creek, purchasing the old Wilkinson place where the laughing Pottawatomies neglected to aid that early settler in rearing his log cabin, and so provoked him by their merriment, as a heavy log seemed likely to slide back upon himself son and wife, that he was tempted to walk in among them with his handspikes-Charles Marvin erected last fall, on that old historic homestead, near the old pioneer family spring, one of the large and costly residences of the county, covering an area of fifteen hundred and thirty-four square feet. And George Doak of South East Grove has this summer invested some of his spare thousands in a new family residence of this same style of taste and outlay. Hoffman's Opera House, in Crown Point, costing some six thousand dollars, a large wooden building, seating some seven hundred persons, has taken, for many of our public gatherings, the place of Cheshire Hall.
Four additional railroads belong to this period: The New York, Chicago, and St. Louis, commonly known as the "Nickel Plate"; the Chicago and Atlantic; the Louisville, New Albany, and Chicago; and the "Three I's," the Indiana, Illinois, and Iowa; giving us eleven railroads in this our fiftieth year. Belonging mainly to this short period of the last five years is the rapid growth of the town of Hammond, the most city-like in its business, its manufacturies, its general style, of any town in our borders, and now, in fact incorporated under a city government. Its aspirations are large and its future growth cannot now be foretold. Hobart and Hammond are now the only towns that can aspire to compete with Crown Point in being controlling centers of population and of influence. To each has been accorded a population of fifteen hundred. Each is quite city-like and depends largely on manufactures. Hobart is devoted mainly to the making of brick, having three large yards, one making it is said, eight hundred thousand a year, the second one and a half millions, and the third, opened in 1882, with a capacity of forty thousand brick a day. In this yard is used a sixty horse-power steam engine. As yet Crown Point with very little in the line of manufactures, being the oldest town and the county-seat, is in the number of families still the first. How long this may be true none can tell. Already Hammond, with six hundred school children, Crown Point having seven hundred and forty, claims to have nearly a thousand more inhabitants than Crown Point, and is the first town in the county to establish a city government, with a mayor and a board of aldermen.
Of the present five thousand, five hundred, and thirty school children of the county, Center township has one thousand and fifty-seven. Or nearly one fifth of all, Crown Point containing two fifteenths of all in the county enumerated this year for the public schools. These children are between the ages of six and twenty-one. Commencing in 1837 with three townships, North, Center, and South, we have divided and subdivided until we have now, in the north Hobart, Calumet, and North, lying side by side, the northern border of each washed by the long waves of Lake Michigan; in the next tier Ross and St. Johns: then Winfield, Center, and Hanover, four miles, seven miles, and five in breadth; and on the south side, three sisters, Eagle, Cedar, and West Creek, six miles, five, and five, in breadth, with more than one third of the territory of the first, one half of the second, and one third of the last, lying within the low-land of the Kankakee; eleven townships in all; our whole territory, the northwestern corner of Indiana, lying north of the Kankakee river, extending, according to the state boundary and the Statutes of 1870, ten miles into the waters of Lake Michigan, comprising an area of land and marsh surface of about five hundred square miles. The southern part is devoted mainly to grazing and agriculture, and is occupied by an intelligent, industrious, independent, even wealthy, farming community; forming a part of those millions that comprise the landed but untitled nobility of our country. The central portion, although not containing such fertile land, is also agricultural, and is occupied, except in the towns and villages, by a farming community, also intelligent, industrious, and prosperous. The north, which has been mainly valuable in the past for pines and for cedars, for wild fruits and for furs, and for holding up railroad ties; for which years ago the pioneers of the southern portion would not have paid ten cents an acre, composed as it was and is of sand-ridges and marshes, and of marshes and sand-ridges, containing a double river and some little lakes; we must probably give up to manufactures and trade; we must be resigned to its becoming a locality for large manufacturing cities, for factories of various kinds, its food supplies and its products to become known through the civilized world; we must be resigned, not only to having one of its little towns ship a thousand bushels of huckleberries in a season, and having its rail-roads carry off five thousand car loads of ice in a year and ten thousand car loads of sand, and fifty car loads a year of Calumet moss; but to its becoming, through all that singular and noted Calumet region, a second Holland in population and industry, in commerce and wealth.
In all these townships we have well-built school houses, frame and brick edifices, now in number one hundred and two. We have five masonic lodges, four odd fellow lodges, one fire company, one fire insurance company, one national bank, twelve large ice houses, one powder mill, three flouring mills, eight weekly newspapers, one hundred and twenty-nine licensed teachers, and twenty-eight post-offices, four being money order offices and one post-master appointed by the President. We have more than six thousand horses and sixteen thousand head of cattle.
And here we are today, after the changes and the growth, the disappointments and the success, the joys and the ever present earth sorrows, of our first fifty years. We are a growing, thriving, peaceful, prosperous, intelligent, and enterprising community. We have done our full part, as an agricultural, stock-raising, cheese and butter producing region, in building up that great mart of trade Chicago. For many years we carried our products there, on wagons and sleds, drawn by ox and horse teams, through mud and water and sand, through storms and heat and cold, and almost gave them away to those money making buyers.
When the country was in danger of being dismembered, we did our full part in sending forth our sons and brothers, who stood beneath the stars and stripes and fought and fell in many a fierce conflict, on the red. fields of blood, in the most terrible civil war ever known in the history of the world, sending as we did more than a thousand men from a population of nine thousand then, men women and children included; and our own brave "boys in blue" fell at New Orleans and Vicksburg and Nashville; at Stone River and Black River and at Andersonville; at Atlanta in the Wilderness and at Gettysburg; and at many another spot, where shot and shell and fell disease struck down the brave. And since the white banner of peace has spread its ample folds over all our fair, broad land, we have done our full part in promoting the intelligence and prosperity of this central region of this great and powerful center of all the states that lie east of the Rocky Mountains. Our public schools and our Sunday schools show for themselves what has been done for our energetic, sturdy boys; and for our fair-haired, winsome, beautiful girls. With more than twenty towns and villages: with eleven rail-roads, the first rail-road county in the state of Indiana; with some of the finest prairie and pasture land in all the Mississippi Valley; with fifty miles of that singular Calumet region, now inviting commerce and manufactures; rich in stock, in flocks and herds, having had this last spring, owned by Thomas Hughes of Eagle Creek, the finest herd of short-horned cattle in the state of Indiana with good public buildings and with forty-two churches; with a county-seat noted for health and for the good order and refinement of its inhabitants; with such an intelligent, prosperous farming community; we are ready to enter upon another half century with all the elements about us for a far more wonderful growth. What we may become by the year 1934 no human mind can now foresee. We are here today, at the close of one half century, to step forth upon the edge of another. What for us and for the world the coming years may have in store is known in its completeness only to God. We enter upon it with abundant hope.
There are left today, of the settlers of 1835, Thomas Clark, Richard Fancher, John B. Wilkinson, Amos Hornor, Wm. Williams, Arthur Bryant, Mrs. Wm. Fisher, a member of the Bryant family, Mrs. Susan Clark, a daughter of Henry Wells, and Mrs. Luman A. Fowler. There may be a few others, and some of these were quite young fifty years ago. Of those who saw this region in 1834 and then trod upon our soil there remain only the two aged men James Hill and Richard Fancher. Of the settlers then there are none; but children, Grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of those are with us now.
Of the settlers of the next four years many yet remain and are with us here today. But in a few years more all these will be gone, and there will be none left who saw these groves before a white man's axe had felled the old monarchs of the wood, those trees under which the Indian youth and maidens sported; none who saw these prairies in their fresh, virgin beauty and loveliness, so gay with flowers in summer time, so grand when over them swept the autumn fires, when the pinnated grouse seemed to be every where, before one weed, one Canada thistle, one dandelion, one leaf of white clover had here appeared; there will be none left who saw here the Pottawatomies, with their blankets and furs and wigwams and ponies, amid the abundant herds of deer and the numerous packs of prairie wolves; there will be none here even who saw the pioneers. We, whose eyes saw all these things, must soon sleep with our fathers; and only our traditions and our records, perhaps also our photographs, will remain in the memories and in the hands of our descendants.
But remember, fellow citizens of Lake, as you enter upon this next half century now lying before us, that besides the records and the traditions which will be left to you, almost every rood of our soil, if it could speak, would be vocal with memories of the pioneers; and you would be amused, astonished, startled sometimes, to hear the words that would issue forth from the witnessing earth, telling of scenes in the groves, on the prairie, by the sparkling waters, in the bright sunlight and by the light of moon and stars alone beheld, some weird, some romantic, some sublime, some picturesque, and some grotesque, which no records and, soon, no traditions will ever bring before your minds. And remember, that, back of these, the same witnessing earth would give you strange and pleasant and fearfully thrilling words about the Red children of the wilds; their loves and their hates, their sorrows and their joys, their prayers to the Great Spirit, their hopes of immortality, their savage warfare and successful hunts, the workings of their truly human hearts with little to restrain or guide them but the dim light of nature and the heart teachings from nature's God; those Red children, our own brothers and sisters by the ties of human blood, who, except the few remains of their arts and weapons, have left on this soil no trace, although for "thousands of moons" they paddled their canoes in our waters and there bathed their symmetrical, copper-colored forms, in summer time, and lived and loved and wept, and fought and sported and died, where we have now our farms and towns and homes. And, once more, remember, that back of all these this same witnessing earth would give you scenes more surprising than night dreams or day dreams, placing before you the real life of the Mound Builders, who have left here their mounds and their bones, who, perhaps thousands" of years ago. had here their well cultivated fields, their vineyards, and orchards, perchance their flocks and herds, their temples for worship, their peaceful, quiet homes, all of which perished before the fierce onslaught of the North American Indians or some earlier savage tribes. Remember. that new, and fresh and as in primeval loveliness, this region seemed but fifty years ago, MAN, perhaps agricultural, civilized man, and afterwards savage man, had been here for unknown ages. We have entered upon the soil where their feet have trodden, we have taken full possession of lands which once they called their own. Their titles have been extinguished, and no abstracts thereof remain. Our own we consider good whenever we can trace them back to a United States patent some forty-five years old. But we differ from all who have crone before us in having brought into the wilderness the rich seeds of a Christian civilization. The weed seeds peculiar to the western prairies sprang up over our prairie soil soon after our plow shares turned under the native green sward, seeds which had been left buried in the earth, it may be, by the old farmer Mound Builders a thousand years ago. These native weeds we may call a part of our heritage from them. We have planted seeds of another kind, yet not of an easier growth, to yield as we hope, abundant fruits for generations yet unborn. Let us, then, remember, as we enter upon the coming years, that into our farming and stock-raising: our manufactures and our trade; our professions, our schools, our journalism; into all our social, our civil, our literary life; not only the energy and intelligence which characterize the Anglo-Saxon race must enter; but also the true, unperverted Christian element; if we would transmit our arts and our inheritances, our free institutions, our growing civilization, our traditions and our records, to our children's children onward for not only a hundred but a thousand years. Every other civilization but the Christian has borne in itself the seeds of its own decay. Ours is the latest form, ours is the grandest form of human progress earth has yet seen; and we have reason to believe, if we do well our part, that ours is destined to endure until the promised millennial glory bursts in full splendor upon the world.
At the close of the oration it was found to be 12:30 by central time, and the assembly adjourned until 2 p. M. to discuss in the mean time the merits of a general basket dinner. The dining hall was spacious, as it took in not only Floral Hall but the whole grove. Cloths were spread; baskets opened; and an abundant supply of choice food, such as in this heart of the food-producing belt of our great country the farmers furnish for the markets of the world, was furnished for every guest. Appetites were good in the pure fresh air, under the blue sky; the variety of food in this grazing region, flowing with milk and honey, abounding in poultry, and where the farmers' families all eat "the finest of the wheat," was sufficient, joined with the summer and autumn fruits, to tempt even an epicure; and an hour and a half soon passed at dinner and in social intercourse. At such a grove fathering the long dinner hour is the hour for social enjoyment, as friendly greetings are exchanged, hands are clasped, and hospitalities shared.
At the stand, 2 p. M. Exercises opened with singing by the choir, which was composed of the following young persons of Crown Point, T. A. Muzzall leader: Benton Wood, Cassius Griffin, and Misses Helen Cleveland, Addie Meeker, Rose Northrup, Mattie Dresser. Allie Fuller, Ella Warner, and Georgie E. Ball. The Historical Secretary of the Old Settlers' Association then presented to the assembly, in the name of JOSEPH A. LITTLE of West Creek township, a blank book, the best bound and most costly that could be obtained in Crown Point, with the request that the names of all present should be recorded therein with dates of settlement and appropriate remarks, and that the book should be afterward sealed up and placed in one of the fire proof vaults of the court-house, to be opened by a special committee in the fall of 1934, when the county holds its first centennial. The book was accepted gratefully, much interest in regard to it was awakened, and GEORGE KRINBILL and WELLINGTON A. CLARK were appointed to take charge of the book and secure the signatures.
The Historical Secretary then presented a chair heavily draped in mourning which remained on the platform through the celebration, reminding the assembly of the death which took place April 5, of the Chairman of the Committee of Arrangements for this celebration, GEORGE WILLEY of Center township, who had just completed his three score years and ten of earthly life. Some commemorative remarks were made by the Secretary, and the choir then sang the following hymn, which having been written in Crown Point in the early morning of that fifth of April, was chosen as the
We must pass ere long away
To the realms of endless day;
While we briefly sojourn here,
Earthly woes we need not fear,
Ours a hope that gildeth bright
Every cloud of earthly night.
Let us on the Father call,
Who in mercy heareth all;
He who pities human woes,
No respect to persons shows;
As we in his sight appear
So he judges; Him we'll fear.
We were not redeemed with gold
From our mode of living old,
But with blood; we share the love
Of the Lamb enthroned above;
One another then must we Love with pure heart fervently.
While our days of sojourn here
We must pass in filial fear,
We are taught to count it joy
When temptations us annoy;
Having Christ our living Friend
Soon our conflicts all will end.
T. H. B.
[For some of the teachings contained in the above hymn the author would refer, in regard to the second and third stanzas, to 1 Peter 1:17-22; and for the fourth stanza, in connection with this passage, to James 1:2.
Crown Point, Saturday morning, April 5,1884.]
Three of the historical papers prepared for this volume were then read by the writers, "West Creek Reminiscences,' "Our Rail Roads," and "Our Exports," which will be found with the other historic papers, and some of the antiquities and relics were displayed. In displaying the antiquities a feature of great interest to the audience was introduced by LEWIS G. LITTLE, Chairman of the Committee on Antiquities, who came from a distant part of the ground and passed through the audience to the platform dressed in the costume of his Puritan forefathers, accompanied by his cousin Miss MARY E. BARNARD, of New Hampshire, also dressed in ancient costume, the two personating "John Alden "and the "Puritan maiden Priscilla."The fine appearance of both as well as the ancient costume attracted and enchained the attention of all. An entire list of the antiquities and relics and curiosities will be found elsewhere. The hour for afternoon adjournment having arrived the exercises at the Fair Ground were closed for the day.
You seldom meet and renew old friendship as you have to day. The white locks of men and women before me, tell the truth of age, and a life well spent, I trust to promote enjoyment in your declining years. The old people have a right to point to their many achievements, and a willing credit must be given them by a later generation about to take their place. There is a fine chord in the human heart that beats tenderly for ripe old age, and makes all feel kind to one another when grandpa and grandma come. I like to hear the grand-children scream, and see them dance, when grand-ma is coming and no one would have this otherwise. It is the natural outflow of affection that God planted in the human heart. It is affection not grained by art or grown by kind associations, but born with the soul. What have the old people done for us? Let us think awhile, I look back 50 years ago and see Lake county a vast and uninhabited plain, covered with wild grass, which the native Indians and wild beasts roamed at will. It was a long way from the convenience of a well settled country. These old people, then young, strong and willing, came upon this land and made the fine farms we now see on every side. They made the highways, built churches and school houses, towns and villages. They reclaimed the land, cultivated the soil and established the convenience of a settled country, and now they can look over a fine cultivated plain with good improvements, and the people possessing reasonable conveniences and comforts, and exclaim with truth, this is our place, our work and our children's heritage. They
have a right to feel proud of this, and do our young people think of the cost of this noble heritage.
When the early settler came there were no roads, no railways, no villages and no market place within a day's drive. They could not travel as far in a day then as now. The wild roads went everywhere and turned every way over very little dry and solid around. They went around or forded the sloughs, then numerous enough. They started here, then the far west, to begin life with very little to cheer them, and made the country as they went along. They came to plant civilization and make the wilderness bloom for posterity. They succeeded well, and will soon leave the fruits of their manly toil to children who felt none of the hardships of the early settler.
In those days Lake county was farther west from the Ohio line than the Rocky Mountains are from us. Indeed we can go to these mountains now sooner and better than the early settler could drive to the state of Ohio. Imagine, then, the sort of metal the pioneer had. In those days it was a fight for life, a struggle to get bread and clothing. There was no money and little property. The comforts of life were not thought of for many a year. Many days' drive from relatives and friends, many miles from neighbors, the early settler lived lonely in his prairie cabin. It required nerve and the best kind of grit to stay and peg away in those days. I admire their self-denial, their patient toil and resignation to hardship and suffering, and it was the same kind that did all the great things of history. The great achievements of the world came from this kind of courage and self will. Their great hope for the better! How grand it was. Strong hearts would have broken but for hope for the future. You looked ahead for better times and knew they would come by steady work and patient waiting. Your hope was mighty as your will, as consoling as your hope today of a glorious abode in Paradise. That is the promise given to all on certain conditions, to be fulfilled. Oh, for hope, and its precious consolation, the ever present friend when all seems lost. Hope, the gift of God, to keep us alive and nerve to duty. My old friends, what faith you had in your work of beginning civilization in your new western home, far from the old stamping ground of childhood. Your faith was the kin of hope. You had faith that your work would bring good fruit. You had faith that your sacrifice would bring comfort. You had faith your hardships would bring better days and it was fulfilled. You had the same kind of faith in your toil that the Hebrew children had. They believed through all the weary years of scourge and bondage, that some day by the mercy of God, they would be free and march to a better land. You had the same faith that good old Paul had centuries ago, that a better and happier time would come to him, and it sustained him, as it sustained you, through all the the grievous wrongs he bore, for a better condition of society, a better civilization, a better world to come.
History is replete with great deeds of mankind, founded upon faith in results. As you opened up the wild land to culture, the wilderness to civilization, so the fathers did before you. The same self-will, the same determination, the same faith inspired the Pilgrims, when they landed upon Plymouth Rock to establish religious liberty in America, and though they were superstitious, intolerant, and cruel, vet they planted the germ that grew to religious freedom. The same sublime faith moved the great heart of Martin Luther and John Wesley. Many people sneer at faith. What inspired Robert Fulton, as he sat upon his bench, studying for years in abject poverty, how to apply the force of steam to water-craft? What inspired the loyal hearts of the old fathers when they declared for American independence? They had faith in the success of popular government and gave their lives for it. You lived, my old friends, later than the age of persecution for opinion sake, and at the beginning of the most wonderful progress the world ever knew. None of you suffered persecution for political or religious opinion. As you have worked and sacrificed to build up a country, so men of all ages have worked and sacrificed in other channels of the world's progress. Some brave unfaltering men of history stood proudly erect before the gibbet, about to consign their souls to eternity, and boldly refused to lay down the work for a better government of the people. Others were drawn and quartered, others suffered agony upon the rack until merciful death came to them, others tortured with corded ropes to break bone and muscle, while many suffered the pains of fire all for advanced thought and opinion, and bright, earnest men have gone to the mad house, with reason dethroned, in overwork to subdue natural forces to the will of man. All the conveniences, all the achievements we have in this age, came to us, after sacrifice, hardship, poverty, and suffering.
While you have made sacrifices for the common good of mankind, vet you have lived in an age of marvelous advancement that your ancestors never saw or enjoyed. Your ancestry, back to Abraham, never saw the rich blessings of civilization that you have seen. They lived in a darkened world, when compared to the age of development you have witnessed. Somewhere on the globe, for two thousand years human development and civilization seem to have grown step by step, until our age is reached, when they took a bound, overleaping every step heretofore made. You have seen the railroad era, and lived when railroads spanned the continent.
You lived when the best appliances of steam power were made. You lived when electric force was sent over a thousand wires and first worked between two continents. In your time came great transcontinental steamship lines and the finest craft ever floated on lake and river. In your age a perfect mail system came with fastest routes. In your age came the sewing machine, the reaper and mower, the thresher and separater, and now the self-binder. In your time came the lightning press and the great dailies, that almost bring the world to your door every morning.
In your time great cities have been built and wonderful markets established. You have seen the best educational system ever known to the world, and lived in an age of art and science, which have done more for mankind than ever before. Your time shows the best school houses and more church edifices, and a wider dissemination of Christianity. You have lived to see your early settlements reach thousands of miles westward, across the continent, and witnessed great states join the old galaxy of the Union. You saw that evil American institution, human slavery, abolished, and universal freedom established on every spot of American soil. You have enjoyed civil rights and religious liberty in full form and substance with nearly a free Bible to all. You have seen and used every useful invention to sow the seed and gather the harvest.
You have seen infant industries grow to powerful institutions, moving thousands of wheels and a half million spindles, which astonish the civilized world. They made you throw-away the old hand cards and spinning wheels. What other people, in any other age saw what you have seen in the worlds great progress? Grandma can talk, actually talk to grandchildren by the telephone fifty miles away. The old lady can ask "my daughter "fifty miles away, what was said at Martha's tea party. Yes, she can say good night to her daughter in Chicago and jump into bed. The old man can send word to his son on the Pacific coast and get an answer in a short hour or so. Did any of you dream of these great things coining to pass, when you braved the life of the wilderness forty or fifty years ago? It all bewilders people who knew how the world moved fifty years ago. While you have witnessed the greatest of the world's achievements, you have seen times of terrible commotion through internecine strife. In your day came the most cruel and terrible war of modern times, waged for the perservation of the old union of the States. Your sons fell on ghastly battle fields, a free offering upon the altar of their country. You are consoled that their blood consecrated the Union anew to the rights of all men, white and black, preserved the old constitution and the country of Washington, Jefferson, and the elder Adams, reaffirmed all the great doctrines of the government declared July 4, 1776, and maintained in the revolution by the best blood of mankind, and re-established the old flag over every foot of a common country. It broke heart strings to give up for ever the soldier boy, but all are born to die for home and country. Every true heart cherishes the loyal dead. Every true heart feels for your maimed and disabled sons and it is the first great act of a glorious country saved to care for them. I shall stand by them, my old friends, in the future as I have in the past, regardless of what I may be called by unfriendly men.
I have given your crippled sons many generous votes and given them as much time at the pension office in Washington as I devoted to my public duties. I want to see a system established in the granting of pensions that a soldier is not compelled to produce evidence enough to hang his neighbors before getting his pension. You have lived to see peace come out of this awful strife, and can feel happy in your closing years that this great country is re-united and every section is moving forward with prosperity, that must redound to the strength and glory of all.
The old people of this country are able to advise a high moral standard in the conduct of men, in the conduct of parties, in the conduct of elections. Your words for truth, for right and justice cannot fail to have a wide and permanent influence. 1 am glad to have met you today and talked to you in this informal manner. If Providence wills, I will be glad to meet you another year, and speak of the capital of the country. I now thank you for your kind attention, and wish you good health and happiness through the year.
A statement was then made by JAMES HILL of Creston, who visited this region in February, 1884, in regard to his seeing William Ross as a settler here at that time, a man with whom he was acquainted before his removal from Decatur county to this region. The statement of James Hill has been recognized as distinct and sufficient authority for the early settlement here of William Bow as claimed.
[And corresponding exactly with this statement, it appears that in March, 1835, the La Porte county commissioners named all the territory of what became Lake and a part of what became Porter, Ross township, after the name of a settler who had then it is said resided in what became Lake for a year or more.] After the statement of this aged citizen of our county,—who was born in Kentucky in 1810, and became an inhabitant of Indiana, in Decatur county, in 1827, who purchased a half section, or three hundred and twenty acres, of land in Cedar Creek township in 1853,—there was read by the Rev. T. H. Hall the following Semi-Centennial Poem (transcriber's note: the next 10 pages, consisting of a Poem have been omitted)
The hour for dinner having again arrived the assembly adjourned until 2 o'clock. Another rich Lake county dinner was enjoyed by a still larger number than was present yesterday. The various groups, into which the large assembly was divided, seemed to enjoy still more fully than yesterday the social intercourse of this pleasant Re-Union; where were the "pioneers," those who were left of the settlers who from forty-four to fifty years ago came into these lovely wilds-and the "old settlers "who have been for twenty-five years inhabitants here, and the later inhabitants of the county, and their children grand-children and great grand-children. The "pioneers" wore badges of white satin ribbon, and the "old settlers" wore badges of red satin, having on them, besides these designations,
"LAKE COUNTY, 1884.
The others, the more youthful portion of the assembly, wore badges of red satin, containing only the words quoted above without the designation "Pioneer" or "Old Settler." The two "noon hours" passed rapidly, and the groups of old friends were again called together.
Two p. M. At the stand in the grove. "The Family Bible that lay on the stand," was sung by JACOB WISE, assisted by GEORGE KRINBILL, both early settlers.
Another of the historical papers was read, "The Pioneer Settlers, their Homes and Habits, their descendants and Influence," which will be found elsewhere; and an address was delivered by AMOS HORNOR Esq., of Ross.
The programme for the afternoon, as arranged, included, Business Toasts, with five minutes each for responses, and a more full display of Relics and Antiquities, but the indications in the southwest of a shower, and the slight shower that did come, broke into these arrangements.
A reporter of the Chicago Tribune was on the ground both days of the celebration and furnished a report for his paper.
Notices of the celebration were published in the county papers.
The toasts as arranged were the following:
1. The commonwealth of Indiana.
2. The founders of Crown Point.
3. The town of Lowell.
4. The young city of Hammond.
5. The town of Hobart.
6. Our Editors.
7. Our Merchants.
8. Our Bench and Bar.
9. The Medical Profession.
10. Our Railroad Men.
11. Our Teachers.
12. Our Farmers.
One hour spent in responses to these twelve subjects would have given opportunity for many interesting statements.]
Notwithstanding the dark cloud and the light showers the young representatives of the early New Engenders again appeared, and now rode into the grove, both, according to primitive Puritan manner, on one steed and without a saddle. Some of the antiquities were exhibited; but the shower effectually set aside the responses to the toasts and the business. And so, informally, although the sunshine returned, the celebration closed.
If not all that could have been desired in numbers and interest, it was certainly a fair success; and those who may live to see the close of the second fifty years of our settlement and growth can compare notes, and form estimates, and judge of interest, as they review these records of THIS RE-UNION.
LIST OF ANTIQUITIES, RELICS, AND CURIOSITIES PRESENTED.
The observant reader will notice that these articles are here called antiquities which have been in existence in their present form fifty years or more, as fifty years is called the present limit of settlement here. One object in presenting these, and especially in presenting some of the smaller relics, was, to show to the children and young people how easily articles, apparently perishable, could be kept in a state of good preservation for at least fifty years. Another object was, to show to the present generation some of the customs, styles, and proofs of cultivation, of the former generations who have now passed away. The cultivation of some love and even veneration for the past many consider desirable for every truly refined and noble nature.
"Say not our age is wiser; if it be, It is the wisdom which the past has given That makes it so."
Antiquities, relics, and curiosities, presented by T. H. Ball.
1. A pocket comb made of horn in a horn case marked T. H. (the initials of his grandfather's name,) and dated 1786, wanting but two years of being one hundred years old. In good condition.
2. A copy of the Boston Primer, 1809. Evidently well used.
3. "The Seven Wonders of the World and other magnificent buildings," a child's book, well read, 1810.
4. The remnant of a watch guard, neatly braided, of fine silk cord, given to its owner, as a memory and friendship token, by a young girl in Appling, Georgia, fifty-one years ago.
5. A miniature pocket almanac of 1834, kept by its present owner for fifty years. In good condition.
6. A small pocket book, made of excellent leather, given to its owner by his uncle H. H. Horton, about fifty years ago. Still in good condition.
7. "The Friendly Instructor 1814," and a child's reader, two books for children, in good condition.
8. A child's arithmetic or "Table Book," of 1815, studied by the owner more than fifty years ago, and now in good condition.
9. A copy of the first map of Lake county, drawn by Solon Robinson, probably in 1836.
10. A rifle made at the Springfield armory in Massachusetts, and brought to Cedar Lake in 1834 by H. H. Horton. Length of barrel twenty-three and a fourth inches.
11. A part of a large elk horn, found imbedded in the West Creek low land on the farm of Joshua P.
Spalding, and by him placed in the hands of its present owner.
12. Part of a stone weapon, supposed to have been an old Indian hatchet, very neatly wrought, with a point something like a bird's beak, found this year on the land of Thomas George south of South-East Grove.
13. A copy of the Ulster County Gazette, N. Y., January 4, 1800, draped in deep mourning for the death of George Washington. The late news from Europe which it contains is dated Munich, September 29, Strasburgh, October 9. Paris, October 13, and London, October 24.
1.4. A map of the world, eleven inches by twenty-two, drawn in 1817, by the owner's mother, then Jane Ayrault Horton, a girl thirteen years of age.
15. A map of the United States, as then it was, sixteen inches by nineteen, wrought by the same hand and in the same manner, 1818.
16. A painting in water colors, the ""Woodman and his Dog," eighteen inches by twenty-four, made by the same hand, perhaps a year or two later. The three specimens of drawing and painting showing the girl-training and handiwork of one of our pioneer New England women.
17. An Alabama wild-cat skin.
18. A military plume of red feathers, used some seventy years ago.
19. Remains of pre-historic man exhumed at Cedar Lake October 6, 1880, where they were deposited more than two hundred years ago, according to the age of a tree under which some were found.
20. A fossil shell, a very fine specimen of Venericardia planicosta, supposed to be from one thousand to five thousand years old.
21. A pair of globes over fifty years old, brought into the county in 1837.
22. Presented from Mr. Cole, telegraph operator and agent at Clarke, two small pieces of bone or horn, of supposed Indian workmanship, one having two notches cut on it and an orifice through it and pointed; the other tapering and pointed; each four inches in length; taken in 1882, along with a jaw bone, supposed to be of a dog, and with a human skeleton, supposed to be of an Indian, from about two feet beneath the surface where a well was commenced at Clarke Station. The skeleton was entire, the teeth were well worn, indicating some sixty years of age.
23. Presented from George Doak of South-East Grove, found near his home, a stone of Indian workmanship, about five and a half inches long, an inch wide, and three fourths of an inch thick, shaped like some whetstones, the sides slightly oval, smooth, neatly wrought, with an orifice half an inch in diameter running through the entire length. This seems to have been drilled out by means of some sharp instrument. Its use is unknown.
Presented by Mrs. M. J. Dinwiddie:
1. A woolen shawl made in 1796, spun, woven and colored at the home of her mother, Mrs. Perkins, who is still living at the advanced age of ninety-eight, at Rome, New York. The shawl was afterwards embroidered as it now is by Mrs. Dinwiddie's own hands.
2. A cushion cover of the same age, 1796, made of cloth, an old cloak, more than a hundred years old, embroidered by Mrs. Dinwiddie about fifty years ago.
3. A bed-quilt of 1812, the lining home-made linen, the pieces of calico bearing the following dates: 1798,1800,1802,1806, 1812, and one from "Grandmother Lockwood's dress," probably many years older. The quilt is in good condition, the calico of those days evidently being well made.
4. A pewter basin used by Mrs. Dinwiddie's father eighty years ago.
5. Four stone Indian relics found near Plum Grove; the first a pipe; the second a hatchet with a groove for the purpose of securing it to the handle; the third a very smooth, polished, dark colored scraping instrument, five inches long; and the fourth an oval stone, five inches long, two and a half wide, one and a quarter thick, unpolished, surface rather rough, yet indicating upon it human workmanship. Its use is unknown.
6. Six geologie specimens of different varieties, also found near Plum Grove, one found by Jerome and Eddie Dinwiddie some twenty years ago, three-eights of an inch in thickness, contains beautiful, picture-like impressions.
In all fourteen articles.
Presented by T. A. Muzzall,
A blanket woven by a squaw of the Navajoe tribe, at Fort Sumner, New Mexico; made of "pulled" wool, combed and twisted by the fingers, and woven on a rude frame, formed of two upright forked sticks inserted in the ground, about eight feet apart and some seven feet high, a pole being tied across these about six inches from the ground and another pole being laid across the top, the warp being tied perpendicularly to these two poles, and the yarn, rolled, twisted, made into balls by hand, being then passed by the deft Indian fingers through the warp and beaten firmly together with a stick. On such a loom, without a shuttle, was this blanket woven. It weighed when new twenty pounds, is six feet wide and eight feet long. It was obtained by its present owner, T. A. Muzzall, direct from these Indians in June, 1866.
Presented by Lewis G. Little:
1. An old book printed in London in 1650, owned by Mrs. M. G. Little.
2. Two old papers, one printed in 1776, the other in 1815; also a thanksgiving oration which was delivered in 1772; owned by Mrs. Little.
3. A number of coins either old or curious bearing the dates 1721, 1782, 1784, 1790, 1806, 1812, 1815, 1828, 1834, 1837, 1840, 1854. Also a paper three cent piece.
4. A warming pan about one hundred years old, owned by J. A. Little.
5. A negro hoe brought from south Carolina by Col. Barker about thirty years ago, owned by J. A. Little.
6. A number of ox shoes.
7. A pair of iron-rimmed spectacles over a hundred years old.
8. A calash made of green silk about seventy-five years old, owned by Mrs. Annie Gerrish Brush, how of Waveland, Indiana.
9. 9. A pewter platter and a plate about one hundred years old.
10. A pair of velvet breeches lined with buck-skin which belonged to the great grandfather of Jesse Little of West Creek, their present owner and a brother of Lewis G. Little.
11. A piece of oak, designed for a cane, taken from the beam of the house of George Little, Newbury, Mass., who came to this country from London in 1640. The house from which this specimen was taken was erected in 1679. When it was torn down in 1861 still owned by the Little family, canes and other relics were manufactured from the beams and given to many of the descendants.
To give an idea of the time it may be mentioned that. Joseph A. Little of West Creek is of the seventh generation from the builder of the house.
12. A wooden cup made from the old elm tree which stood near the well and door of Daniel Webster. Date, 1782.
Also, owned by D. Parmley of Indian-town, now a resident near Shelby.
13. A gun six and a half feet long. Old but without a history.
14. A large elk-horn found a year ago on the farm of Aug. Miller of West Creek.
15. An old Indian pipe.
16. An old Indian whistle.
17. Some stone axes once used by the Indians.
18. Two iron axes.
19. An iron fish spear.
20. Owned by Hugh Moore. A horn snuff box over one hundred years old.
Presented by E. P. Ames:
1. A stand once owned by John Rogers, Smithfield, England, in 1555; now owned by E. P. Ames.
2. A sun-dial brought from Salisbury, England in 1649.
Presented by Mrs. Betsey R. Abbot Wason.
1. A pewter platter, part of the wedding outfit of her grandmother, Mrs. Phebe Ballard Abbot, who was married November 12, 1772. On the rim are the initial letters, P. B.
2. A silver spoon which once belonged to her grandmother Rock wood and is marked E. M. R. For Ebenezer and Mary Rockwood.
Presented by Mrs. J. Fisher,
A snuff-box, heart shape, brought from Scotland seventy-nine years ago, which has been in the Brown and Fisher families over two hundred years.
Presented by Mrs. M. J. Hyde:
1. A very line powder horn, made from the horn of a wild ox and brought into this county in 1844 by the father of Mrs. Hyde, Daniel Towl.
2. A cane made by Daniel T. Stichelman from a piece of timber taken by him from the wreck of the 13. S. steamer Edith, the first propeller built for the Government and wrecked in 1848. The maker of the cane was at that time in the U. S. Coast Survey at Guadalupe. California, camped about one mile from the wreck.
3. A conch-shell brought into the county in 1887 by Ebenezer Saxton, a native of Vermont. This shell has been handed down in the Saxton family from generation to generation, in the line of the Ebenezers, and the family tradition is that the first Ebenezer Saxton of New England brought it from England with him in the Mayflower.
4. A butter bowl, made of a knotty piece of wood by E. Saxton, about fifty-five years ago, in Canada, with only a jack-knife for tools.
5. Some silver spoons with which E. Saxton and his wife commenced housekeeping in 1819.
6. A rollingpin which belonged once to Mrs. Saxton's mother and is probably over a hundred years old.
Presented by J. P. Spalding:
1. A wooden bevel, ancient, belonging at one time to the Farley family.
2. A lumberman's board rule, of black walnut, two feet long, a full inch in diameter, eight sides, each side calculated for measuring lumber of certain length, belonging formerly to Heman Spalding, grandfather of J. P. Spalding, who resided in the state of New York.
Note. Through an oversight of the Historical Secretary a wrong date appears on page 64. No. 10, in regard to the Springfield armory rifle, a rifle of such excellent workmanship that, in connection with the skill acquired by its boy owner at Cedar Lake, it gained the reputation, in his hands, of being unerring. The date, 1834, should be 1838. Until 1848, except Sundays, it was in almost daily use, and brought down a large amount of the then abundant game
T. H. B.
EXTRACTS FROM LETTERS.
From E. B. Warriner, of Kankakee, Illinois. To T. H. Ball.
"Yours of recent date in regard to my attending the semi-centennial celebration of the old settlers of Lake county was duly received and should have been answered sooner. * * * I regret now to say that I shall be obliged to give up the pleasure of meeting many old friends and acquaintances that will be there, also of seeing old familiar places. * * * * Please remember me to old friends"
GROVE HILL, Alabama, August 25, 1884.
To COMMITTEE OF OLD SETTLERS' ASSOCIATION:
Your kind invitation to attend your semi-centennial celebration, is declined with regret, on account of the inability to overcome the obstacle which distance presents.
I fully appreciate the interest of the happy occasion, and would gladly respond to the call to be one of the memorable "Old Settlers" of Lake county, who will meet to compare notes and commemorate the 50th year of their "Life on the Prairie Lea," and to mark the changes time has wrought, noting the difference between then and now. As one of the early members of the society of Lake county, I recall many scenes of interest, which loom up vividly in the background of the past, and would no doubt evoke a passing interest in the minds of the present actors in the Drama of Life, were they repeated to them. "vivavoce;" but the pen is a meagre medium to reproduce those scenes, around which cluster sweet memories of early days when I was "a chiel among ye takin notes."
Now I dwell in a far off clime, where, instead of snow, and" sleighrides, to vary the phases of life, we have sunshine and flowers "all the year 'round," and the "Mocking bird sings us to sleep every night," and all the scenes are changed, as the turn of the kaleidescope has the magic power to change.
"With best wishes for all my former friends and associates.
I remain respectfully,
E. H. WOODARD.
The writer of the above, Mrs. E. H. Woodard of South Alabama, was a member of the Ball family at Cedar Lake, and was married in August, 1854, to Judge R. J. Woodard of Grove Hill. They have four daughters and one son. Three of the daughters are married and have pleasant homes in South Alabama. The son, Charles H. Woodard, lives in Texas.
SOUTH BEND, Indiana. September 1, 1884.
MY OLD FRIENDS:
What a flood of pleasant recollections of the last third of a century rose before me on the receipt of your invitation to attend
the Old Settlers' Reunion this week. How delighted I would be if I could be there. But a lecture engagement at Columbus,
Ohio, 4th inst.. prevents. From 1851, when I first visited Lake County, I have never driven across its prairies, or enjoyed the
hospitality of its homes, without feeling that nowhere had I better or warmer, or truer friends than within its borders.
With best wishes.
CHICAGO, Illinois, September 1, 1884.
Your pleasant invitation to share with you this delightful gathering of old friends, calls forth the warmest feelings of my heart. I therefore regret that my health is such that it will not be prudent for me to be with you. Therefore, please accept my most hearty thanks for your kind remembrance of this reunion of old settlers. Believing as I do you will have a delightful time, it reminds me of a similar gathering when I had the pleasure of meeting with you some five years past.
Permit me to congratulate all the old settlers that shall come together on this memorable gathering, to share the hospitality of the good old Hoosier state. In closing, let me say I completed last February 9th, (while in old Mexico), my 80th year.
Let me remind the many dear friends present, that there are not a few with me who are looking, I trust, to that reunion in the Better Home where we shall never part any more. For this let us live until the last sleep, for there is no night there.
So, dear friends, farewell, Your humble brother in the bonds of Christian love.
From J. C. Batten of. Santa Barbara, California, a pioneer settler here in 1836 from Boone county, who soon joined the western migration army; or as Solon Robinson expressed it many years ago, was swept westward by "that irresistible wave of emigration that is rolling onward to the Pacific ocean." He has reached that distant, western, wave washed coast, and can go no further. Writing to T. H. Ball he says:
"Your letter is received, and well do I remember Lake county, Indiana, and Cedar Lake at the time you mention. I remember your family and many of the families around the lake. I remember Thomas and Amos Hornor, their father, and all the family, the Farwells, Dr. Wood, and a Mr. Robinson; in fact most everybody around the lake in those early days; also a Mr. Cutler, my near neighbor, and a Mr. Sasse. I have heard since that young Mr. Sasse lived at the county seat."
"I would be glad to come back to the old settlement; and will, if my health is good and everything all right. Tell Amos Hornor when you see him that I would like to see him very much. Solomon Nordyke is living at Pleasant Plain, Jefferson county, Iowa. Solomon Nordyke and my wife are the only ones of the family that are living; Hiram, Jacob, and Caleb have been dead for more than twelve years."
The writer of the above lived at the head of Cedar Lake on the bank, in the first cabin erected there, where is now the stately mansion of John Meyer. The Nordyke family, into which he had married, lived further north where is now the Herlitz home.
An interesting letter was received and read, from Horace Bliss of Nebraska, a resident here many years ago, and well known to the older citizens of West Creek and of Crown Point. The letter spoke of the changes of the past and of the present. Unfortunately it is just now mislaid so that it cannot go into the printer's hands. The members of the West Greek Lyceum of 1856, an organization referred to in "The Lake of the Red Cedars," page 125, will remember well that intelligent and active member, then a young man, Horace Bliss; they will be glad to hear of his prosperity.
From one of our early, perhaps our earliest representative in Congress, a resident of LaPorte county, to his particular friend here, James H. Luther, then about to leave for Denver.
August 22, 1884.
Were you remaining at home the temptation of once more meeting with you would take me to the Old Settlers' meeting at Crown Point; but as you will be away I must put off a visit to your place until I can find you at home.
I could not write up anything worth notice about the settlement of Lake county without brightening up my recollections by a personal review of its old localities, also the oldest friends left; and time will not give me the opportunity to do so.
CHARLES W. CATHCART."
From the Rev. Henry Johnson, of Michigan, a letter was received, addressed to T. H. Ball, but arriving too late to be read at the celebration. The writer, who graduated at Hanover College, Indiana, in 1872, having been prepared for college at the Crown Point Institute, and taking the "honors of the class" in Latin and Greek when entering the college course at Hanover, had been requested to represent the Pierian Society of the, Crown Point Institute at the literary exercises of September 3.
This will account for the allusions in the letter to the Society and to the Institute, and to the founder of the Institute. (In the report of those Wednesday evening exercises, as given on page 48, it has just been ascertained that an omission was made of the true No. 7. "The Burial of Moses" being No. 8. The reader will please supply for that page 7. A recitation, "Nanhaut, the Indian Deacon," by Miss Georgie E. Ball. Taking part in those exercises were members of the earliest and of the latest of our literary societies. The Cedar Lake Lyceum and the Southeast Grove Literary. But the absence of Dr. E. J. Farwell, an early resident of Hanover, and of the Rev. H. Johnson, the writer of the letter mentioned above, prevented the carrying out of the full programme as first arranged.)
Extracts from the letter.
GRAND HAVEN, Michigan, Sept; 4, 1884.
I have just returned from my vacation. I have been absent five Sundays, and came home Tuesday of the present week.
I am sorry that I could not accept your invitation to be present at the reunion. I would have been glad to say a few words in behalf of the old Society. I shall always remain your debtor. Crown Point Institute is not dead. Their leaf 'shall not wither." She lives in her children. It was not in vain that you established such a school. Your pupils will always be grateful to you.
Before the close of the celebration a vote of thanks. was passed, mentioning especially the members of the various committees who had aided so materially in making the gathering a pleasant one, also the singers, the papers of the county, the Chicago Tribune and its reporter.
T. H. BALL, Historical Sec'y.