1904 Calhoun County
Its Early History and First Settlers. Prepared and Read at a Celebration of the Centennial Anniversary at Hardin, Ill., July 4, 1876. By JOHN LAMMY
Unwritten history becomes, in the course of time, mere legend or
tradition. Written history preserves the deeds of men and the events of
their day, and passes them down to posterity as cherished realities or
monitory guides to the paths of duty and of honor.
The history here given has been, for the most part, obtained from those who have been either eye witnesses to, or actors in the events narrated.
It may be well for us right here to consider for a moment the fact that the time is not far distant when our actions, and the events of our time, will be commented on and read by others with an interest as great, if not greater, than that with which we regard those who have preceded us. And if their faults and weaknesses serve to guard us against ours, and their nobleness and self-denying integrity serve to inspire us with a spirit of emulation to duty and to right, then our history has served its purpose.
This is far from being a complete account of the past. In the first place, the time was too limited for its accomplishment. And although the committee on whom devolved the duty of obtaining the incidents and facts required did all in their power, yet many neighborhoods are omitted, and many settlers left out from the lack of time and inability to find those most competent to give the information. What is here obtained is mainly due to Mr. Ansell of the Democrat; Attorney John F. Nolle; Attorney A. W. Argust and Capt. Stephen Child, of the committee appointed; and Messrs. A. O. Squier, Aug. greamba, Aug. Smith and others who very generously volunteered much valuable information.
The first white man that ever took up his abode in Calhoun county is said
to have settled, at the Two Branches in Point precinct about the year 1801.
He lived for years before any other settler came, and remained alone and
unknown for a long time after these settlers did come. His home was a cave
dug out by himself and was about a quarter of a mile from the Mississippi
river. In 1850 Solomon Lammy, who now owns the land, dug up the boards of
the floor and leveled the sides on which large saplings were then growing,
to make way for a garden spot. Who he was, or where he came from, was known
only to himself, for he refused all intercourse with the settlers. He went
by the name of the Hermit.
The next settlers were French trappers and half breeds who formed quite a large colony on the Illinois river about a mile above where the Deer Plain Ferry now stands. These remained there until the great high water of 1815 or 1818 drove them away. One Andrew Judy lived there, but whether he was one of this number or one who came afterwards, is not known.
After these in time was Major Roberts, who came from Ohio in June 1811, and settled on the farm now owned by Henry Kiel. The journey was made in a keel boat, from which he landed near the present site of Bloom's Landing.
John Shaw was probably the next, he first passed through with some government expedition (Possibly expedition of Lewis & Clark in 1804?) and was so well pleased with the country that he came back and settled. He made extensive purchases of land in the neighborhoods of Gilead, Guilford, Belleview and Hamburg, and his coming proved quite an event in the history of the future country. Reference to Shaw is made further on.
Then, or it may have been some time before, (for the dates are not given,) a nmnher of French hunters and trappers from Cape Girardeau came by way of the villages of St. Louis and St. Charles, and settled in Little Cap au Gris, afterwards Milan, and to a certain extent became tillers of the soil.
This place was afterwards laid out in town lots by John Holler and called Milan.
In May, the father of Cheslew Twichell of Monterey with a large family, landed on a keel boat, at Cole's Grove, on Gilead Slough. Chesley was then eighteen years of age and brought the iron in a canoe from the village of St. Louis, a distance of sixty five miles for the first plow which his father afterwards made. This was the first iron plough that was ever in the county, all the others being of wood. Major Roberts, actuated by this spirit of enterprise, had old Mr. Twichell to make him a cart from a part of the same canoe load of iron, which was also the first cart in the county. In the year 1823, Chesley, with his brother Royal and Vertner Church, helped a Mr. David E. Dutton drive a lot of cattle and hogs to a place eight miles above the present town of Atlas, in Pike county. The first habitation they met after leaving Salt Prairie or Cole's Grove was five miles southof Bay Creek, and the next was five miles south of Atlas. Atlas they found to be a rather populous place, containing eight or nine houses. At the present site of Mozier's Landing they found the fire still burning, which the old man, (Mozier) had made after his first landing with his family.
Hamburg was a wilderness of forest and underbrush, and nothing for a road but an Indian trail. Calvin Twichell being of a rambling disposition wandered as far off as the present site of Quincy, and while there helped to build a log cabin for one Geo. W. Haight, which was the second one built in the place at that time. This was in 1827.
Samuel Smith, husband of Mrs. Lueena Smith near Brussels, emigrated from Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, in 1822, and built a house in a field now owned by Marion Todd, near the present Cresswell School House in Point precinct.
About this time also, the Metz family moved in. Johnnie, we believe, it was who built a house and made a small clearing by the big spring on the present site of Brussels. Others of the family moved up and settled in the neighborhood of Gilead.
In 1826, Robert Andrews, father of Dr. R. G. Andrews and Mr. John Andrews of Point precinct, settled in what is known as the Cresswell settlement, in which place he remained till his death. Then came the following settlers with their families: Nathaniel Shaw, brother of John Shaw, settled about half a mile south of the present site of Deer Plain post office. Traces of where the house stood are yet to be seen in the timber. Comfort Shaw, who settled on the place now owned by Pat Fitzgerald and Mrs. Lizzie Kelly.
—— Cline, who settled on Frank Smith's place, on the bank of the Mississippi.
—— Red, who settled on what is now Johnson's Landing.
Capt. Nixon, who settled a little east of where Jacob Aner lives on the last stretch of bluff in the county.
J. B. Marechel, near Brock's Landing.
Andrew Roy, on the "Thompson" farm in Little Prairie, now owned by Henry Tappmeyer.
Henry G. Stiles, who built a shanty and lived on the Tappmeyer place.
Amos Stiles, who settled on Little Prairie.
Then Jacob Lutes, who settled some two miles south of the present Brussels.
Then three families of the Krites came, who settled in the same neighborhood.
Of all these families Amos Stiles, one of the Shaws, Clines, Andrew Roy, Jacob Lutes and all three of the Krites have no representative in the county at present.
Most of these families came from Cape Girardeau, St. Charles, St. Louis and St. Genevieve, and gave the first great impetus to permanent settlement.
Another very influential family was that of Capt. Marcus L. Adderton who, by virtue of his military discharge, entered a large tract of land in the present neighborhood of Dr. Andrews. The Captain died only a few years ago after serving in various official capacities.
Aug. Greamba, father of Augustus and Henry Greamba, came in 1833 and settled near the present farm of Mr. Hiram Keithly. In the year following Augustus, jr. was born and is now living very nearly on the same spot where his childhood was spent.
The first settler here after Major Roberts was Judge Ebenezer Smith, father of Augustus Smith. He came in on the 10th day of May, A.D. 1819, from the falls of the Ohio, and made the entire trip in a barge which had to be cordelled from the mouth of the Ohio up.
He found the Indians—as he used to express it--"thick as blackberries."
Five families of Whites were all that were to be found in the present limits of Calhoun county. Among these were those of Major Roberts, John Shaw and Richard Dillon. The county then was a part of Madison county, and he paid his taxes at Edwardsville, the county seat.
The only building of any kind for miles around was an Indian trading post. The house was close to the road-side spring that lies midway between the present residences of A. G. Squier and Herman Imming.
This post was kept by a Canadian Frenchman, who exchanged whiskey and tobacco for furs. This man, Mr. Smith bought out, for the purpose of ridding himself of the dangers and troubles of drunken Indians, and he burnt the house as soon as possession was given.
Among the first improvements made on his place was the planting of a few seedling apple trees, the first in the county, and the planting of these trees was the means of afterward procuring him a pre-emption on the land. He also entered the land on which he died and his son, Augustus, is now probably the only man in the county who lives on, and owns the land entered by his father.
On his first coming he also found a half breed Indian living on the river
bank, at the present site of Guilford. At this place he built a ferry aud
employed this half-breed to run it, which he did faithfully for a number of
years. This ferry connected the prairie villages of Jersey, Greene and
Macoupin counties with the settlements of Calhoun, the forts in Missouri,
and the villages of St. Charles, St. Louis and St. Genevieve, which places
were then, as now, the centres of civilized wealth.
Jacob Pruden stopped with Ebenezer Smith a while before settling down, but finally located in 1829, building near the big spring; of A. G. Squier. While living here his wife had her three year old boy stolen by the Indians, who held him until he was re-captured five years afterwards. This, probably, is the only instance in which Calhoun's early settlers lost children by the Indians. In 1829, Pruden moved on the farm now known as the Mortland farm. He bought out a man named Still, whose reasons for selling were that ''the hollow was so full of wolves and rattlesnakes that he was afraid to stay." Mr. Pruden owned the first cart in this neighborhood.
John Ingersoll lived one or two years at Guilford and then moved to the spring south of C. C. Squier's, in the year 1825. His family consisted of seven boys and one girl. The house was 18x20 feet and served the treble purpose of sleeping room, kitchen and church.
Calvin Twichell and his mother's family settled on what is now know as the McDonald farm about the year 1830. Some one had built a cabin on it years before, and the large rock which is now the ornament of the front yard was then the back of the chimney of this primitive building.
Charles Squier,—father of A. G. and C. C. Squier, came in here in 1833 and settled in Mortland Hollow, in the spring of 1834, he and Jacob Pruden built the first school house in this neighborhood, his daughter Caroline, afterwards Mrs. Belt, teaching the first school, Mrs. Guthrie being one of her pupils.
Heyne's Landing was first settled by Richard Dillon shortly after the coming of Major Roberts. Dillon moved up the Hollow west of the place now owned by Levi Smith.
We have been unable to get very little definite knowledge of the early
settlement of Hardin, and vicinity north of it.
Dr. Terry, it seems, was the first settler. He came in, and, after stopping awhile with Ebenezer Smith, moved up and built a house near where the old warehouse now stands. The place was known as Terry's Landing until 1835, when, after its purchase by B. F. Child, it was known as Child's Landing. In 1847 it became the county seat under the name of Hardin, both of which honors it retains to this day.
Antoine Degerlia, Sr., moved into its neighborhood at a very early day, accompanied by several other families whose names are unknown to the writer at present. Mr. Degerlia had a very large family who, with himself, had a marked influence in its early society and business.
We cannot date the coming of John Shaw, the earliest settler, and at the
same time the most noted man in its early annals.
It is reasonably certain that he did not come alone and also probable that he came with considerable property.
In the first place he set up a horse mill, which was the only means of milling open to the settlers for years. In 1833, he was able to send to market one hundred fat steers which netted him an even thousand dollars. His store and his public business gave him an influence over men enough to enable him to rule the county which he indirectly did for years. So great was his influence and at the same time so injurious to the settler, that the public issue was gotten up in its politics of "Shaw," or "Anti-Shaw," and it was not until after a great and united struggle that John Shaw lost his supremacy.
However, like many others he had his day, and he at last passed out of history and out of memory of all except the few whose injuries or friendships keep his deeds fresh.
The final blow of his downfall was the building of a steamboat at Hamburg. On this boat he lavished most of his wealth, and on her first load he expended all his credit. It is said that every avilable neighborhood was called on to ship by him their surplus stores to St. Louis, and await his return for their money. This, many of them did, but John Shaw considered St. Louis too small a place for the patronage of his boat, so he steamed on to New Orleans, from whence, it appears, he never came back. At any rate, we never find him connected with any other enterprise in the county.
Partly co-temporary with Shaw were the families of Wm. Frye, Richard Dillon, Lockwood, Sternes, Howell and Wolf.
These men had made Gilead one of the foremost settlements in the county.
In 1828 the two families of Jacob and Samuel Trader moved into Salt Prairie now Gilead. With them came the Winship's, Patterson's, Byrd's, Stiles, Schell's and Wise's. These came from Cape Girardeau, and made the trip in covered wagons. With the exception of the Stiles family they all settled in a neighborhood north of Gilead.
Jacob Crader settled by the Cave Spring, four miles west of Hardin, and the same distance north of Gilead. Here he built two water power corn mills in 1829, the year long remembered as the year of the great snow, a snow falling in the early spring of that year to a depth never before experienced by any of the settlers.
In 1830, Jacob moved with his family to the old Uhrig place, now the Catholic Church neighborhood in Crater precinct. He and his boys had to chop a way for their wagon through the forest to get there. The early frost of 1831 so injured their corn that it was unfit for food, but necessity smothered their scruples and they lived the year out on the unpalatable stuff. The next season he obtained his seed corn in St. Louis, paying at the moderate rate of $2.25 per bushel.
In the fall of 1832 Mr. Crader moved from the bluff to the river and built on what is now called Crater's Landing. Young Jacob, from whom most of this information is obtained, was then about ten years of age. In the summer of 1833, he says that the family was greatly alarmed by a loud thundering noise from somewhere down the river. About the head of Hurricane Island they discovered what they thought to be a house coming towards them against the current. Directly the "house'' landed close to their cabin and proved to be a steamboat, he believes she was called the Argus. His father helped the officers and crew to get about six or eight cords of wood, young Jacob doing the hauling with a yoke of oxen and cart, robed in a pigeon-tailed coat, blue cloth and brass buttons.—something, he considered, very grand, although it belonged to a past and did trail the ground. But man's dearest treasures are often mocked at, and to this rule young Jacob was no exception, for his much prized "pigeon tail" caused the officers and crew to name him the "Long tailed bull driver," an inheritance he possesses to this day, since several of the present steamboatmen yet give him this title. After "wooding" the boat the officers took the whole family about four miles up the river and back, during which they had a grand time. The captain arranged with the elder Crader to have wood on the bank for the next trip of the boat, which they made in three or four weeks from that date, paying for it one dollar a cord, and probably inaugurating the first wood-landing in the county.
Samuel Crater, brother to Jacob, Sr. moved up to what is now known as Indian Creek, in the year 1829. On this creek he also successively built two water mills, and had a first class blacksmith shop in connection.
John Hull settled at the Great Salt Spring at a very early day, date not known.
After him came U. S. Quigley, who took possession of the spring and with a view of utilizing it for the making of salt, erected a large frame building and brought machinery for salt making from Ohio. In order to get a greater supply he bored to a depth of 250 feet, but only succeeded in getting a large flow of fresh water containing sulphur, rendering the whole affair useless. Soon after he abandoned the place and after remaining a while longer in the county, moved away.
Anderson Wilkinson, father of Wm. M. Wilkinson, came here in 1831 from Missouri. He first settled on the present Jeptha Dixon farm, finding there a number of huts, the last remnants of the deserted village of Bountyville. From thence he removed to the farm now occupied by Wm. H. Plummer, and from thence to the town of Gilead, where he died.
Andrew Uhrig moved in, in 1829, and settled on the river near what is known as Hurricane Island Slough. Being a man of great wealth, he engaged very largely in business. He owned the steamer Pearl which he ran for years in the trade. He planted the first vineyard in the county, sold the first beer and had a a large store in connection with other business. High water of "44" drove him to the bluff on what is known as Uhrig's farm. In 1847 he removed to Hardin before it became the county seat, and was one of the few whose labors tended to make it this.
Earliest settler not known. Mrs. John White came from Kentucky in 1834.
Found Peacock in possession of the only orchard on the creek. There were
about thirty acres in cultivation all told, and the following families
residing here: Otwell's, Beinan's, Peacocks' and Guntherman's, Webb's,
Nichol's, Taylor's and Jesse Jackson came in with Mrs. White in 1834.
In 1845, Dan Looper owned the only mill within twenty miles of them, and it was run by hand. Wild hogs were numerous and very fat in the fall. Wolves came into the door yards, sometimes as many as twelve or fifteen at a time. Indians were very numerous, but peaceable. The Indians left about 1835-1836.
Mrs. Elizabeth Crosby moved from St. Clair county to Greene in 1826, and from Greene to Panther Creek in 1847. There was a school with an attendance of twenty pupils. The ridges that are now covered with beautiful forests, or that have just been cleared of them were, at that time, were bare as the prairie, without even a shrub.
John Borroman was there in 1837.
How much sooner, not know.
Incidents of Settlement
From 1815 up to 1820, the St. Charles settlers, who had rapidly increased under the daring Boon, began to extend their settlements as far as Lower Dardenne, Barique and Cuivre creeks, on the Mississippi. It appears that this increase was due to the inalienable right and natural tendency of woman to follow the fortunes and share the vicissitudes and bonnet and ribbon money of men. With a weakness as common to man then as it is today, be left his lethargy and fishing tackle in the shade and emerged as a hod carrier and master mason. The rest was the erection of several good forts inside which the women and children could repair for safety. This done they found frequent opportunities of visiting "Mesopotamia" of the west —the hallowed precincts of what is now the county of Calhoun. The chief allurements to it were the vast numbers of wild turkey and deer, the presence of honey and, we suppose, the absence of women.
On one occasion a lot of "harum-scarum" young men, against the advice of the older ones, crossed from Cap au Gris, Missouri, to take in a lot of wild turkeys, whose cries they distinctly heard. As they passed into the woods, the turkeys receded until all had passed some distance into the forest. It was but a short time until the forest echoed the tramp of their re-turning steps. They came hastily, too, for not far in their rear was a lot of savages anxious for their scalps. Plunging into the river they hardly succeeded in escaping with their lives. One poor fellow, whose name is now forgotten, was hedged in from his companions and driven to the top of the bluff. Being as daring as he was desperate, he actually forced his horse down the declivity, and plunging into the river, followed by a shower of arrows, he reached the Missouri shore in safety. It is needless to say that the turkey cries proceeded from the Indians.
On another occasion, a party of Indians who were on a raid of murder and robbery, attacked the few settlers and trappers then in the Point. The settlers seemed to have been ready for them, for they were organized and gave them a hot chase and had the pleasure of reaching Cap au Gris ferry landing in time to see the Indians safely landed with their spoils on the Missouri shore. One Indian brave was so delighted with their discomfiture that stepping forward to the bank, he stooped down to a very undignified position and signaled his contempt for the party. Captain Adderton, who told this to the writer, thought it was Capt. Nixon who took np his rifle with an oath, and firing at the savage, dropped him dead in his tracks. The incident is well remembered yet among the few and the place is known as "The Long Shot."
French and Indian High Water.
Captain Nixon visited the county long before removing to it. He stated
that, while on his way in a canoe from near the present Deer Plain
postoffice, across Little Prairie down to the present site of the town of
Grafton; and that, while on his way, he passed the colonists of the Illinois
River, who had taken refuge on a mound in Little Prairie, near the place
afterward settled by Patrick Cunningham. These had their Indian ponies,
canoes and worldly wealth all around them, and were much surprised and
demoralized by the unexpected flood. Their ponies breaking away and leaving
them for the more congenial mainland, they soon after pushed off in their
canoes and made for Portage Des Sioux, where they afterwards settled. This
was between the years 1815 and 1820. Some of these ponies were afterwards
caught and domesticated by Captain Nixon.
This high water is now historical from the damages it caused to the trappers and early settlers who invariably located on the lowlands along the western rivers.
Manner of Life.
The county, from the first, furnished the necessaries of life. An acre or
two in potatoes and corn furnished a year's breadstuff for anyfamily. The
wild turkey and deer furnished them meat, and the hollow trees of the forest
yielded them stores of honey. The cultivation and manufacture of flax
yielded their clothing, but for the luxuries of life they had to repair to
St. Louis. To obtain these they resorted to the following means: Every
spring and fall the men would cut a lot of cordwood near the river. Then
making a raft of ash or cottonwood logs, they would shoulder the cord wood
on board. Running the raft to St. Louis they would carry the wood ashore,
cord it, and sell it, getting from a dollar to a dollar and a quarter a
cord. With the proceeds they loaded their canoes with such things as
necessity or fancy prompted, and then paddled home with their riches to an
expectant and gratified family. The cables used to tie up the rafts were
large and costly,—grapevines obtained from the forest.
The milling was first done by means of a sycamore block hollowed by fire, and then cleaned out. Into this was emptied the shelled corn which was pounded to the required fineness with a rock. Another method was by hand mills, but these were very slow and required considerable muscle and patience.
In the matter of courtship the vicissitudes were still greater. Instead of the comfort of the modern front gate and the shadowed recesses of a retired parlor, with its turndown lamp and inviting sofa, the young people had to sit by the light of a wood fire in the wide fire place of a one room log cabin, the girl's mother on one side, and the "old man" on the other, ready to criticise every word said, and never getting sleepy—yet it seems that the girls must have given their admirers considerable encouragement from the fact that, notwithstanding all these difficulties, marriages were of frequent occurrence.
John Bolter at Milan, year not known, used to communicate with early
settlers in St. Charles. Bolter moved up the river afterwards to what was
called the Fishing Branch, and there died.
Ebenezer Smith's ferry, at present Guilford, 1819 or 1820.
Hushnell's ferry, at present Columbiana, time of starting not known. Bushnell sold to Mr. Farrow in whose family it yet remains.
Clarksville Ferry in September 1825, Abner Young.
Jone's Ferry on Illinois, year not known.
Samuel Hill at Newport, March, 1825.
Jacques Ferry, now Deer Plain, near mouth of the Illinois, year not known. Existed in 1825.
Chesley Twichell thinks the first was the "Utility"' in the year 1831.
She was three days coming from St. Louis to the present Twichell Landing.
According to Jacob Crader, the "Argus" came in 1833.
In 1835 came the "Don Juan," with DeWitt as Capt. and Press Devinney, as pilot.
Then the "America," which was sunk in Diamond Island Slough (Dark Chute) by collision with the "Friendship,"' which boat came into the trade in 1836. After lying three or four weeks the "American" was drawn out by aid of forty-two yoke of oxen and sixty or seventy men, mostly settlers, who were invited by the boat owners to help them.
The freight of these consisted of cattle, hogs, corn and wheat, and gave
great impetus in raising these commodities, from the fact of furnishing the
means of transportation.
The first wheat of any note was raised in 1838.
The first threshing machine known of was brought in to Crater precinct by Henry Bechdoldt in 1846.
Grain cradles were introduced in 1845, the first one on the farm of Jacob Crader, and in the following year they became very common. The people thought them the greatest invention out.
The first wagon in the county was brought in by Winship, in 1828. The next one was brought in by Nathaniel Shaw in about 1830.
The first frame dwelling house was that built by Major Roberts on the present farm of Kenry Kiel, in 1829.
The first frame barn was built on the farm now occupied by A. G. Squir, and is still standing.
The first, not known. Probably the Gilman schoolhouse, afterwards Bethel,
on what was then known as "Muddy Creek."
Point Pleasant, near Nathaniel Shaw's residence, Point precinct, was probably the next. Date not known.
Then one in Mortland Hollow, built by Charles Squier and Jacob Pruden in 1829.
The first Sunday School not known. Stephen Paxon organized several in the county, the first of which was at Belleview. in 1850.
The first, probably was that owned by John Shaw at Coles Grove. Date
unknown. It was a horse power.
Next was, probably, John Mett's, in Brussels. A horse power, probably in 1828.
Gilman's on Muddy Creek, probably co-temporary with Metts. A water power.
The Cave Spring mill, near the residence of John McNabb. Built by Jacob Crater in 1829. Water power.
Indian Creek mill, built by Samuel Crater in 1829 or 1830.
Calhoun county was a part of what was long known as the '"Great Military
Tract" which extended from Chicago, south and west, to the Mississippi
River. It was known first as Madison county, which then included the present
counties of Madison, Jersey, Green and Pike, with Edwardsville, as the
county seat. A subsequent division formed the counties of the present
Madison, and Greene which included Jersey and Pike which included Calhoun.
The county seat of Pike was Cole's Grove, now Gilead. Calhoun at that day
had well established settlements long before permanent settlers took
possession of Pike, and the weight of population for a long time lay south
of Cole's Grove.
By an act of the legislature, approved January 10, 1825, a county to be called Calhoun was to be formed from the lower part of Pike, and commissioners were appointed to locate a permanent '"Seat of Justice" for the same. An election for county officers was held on the second Saturday of February, 1825, in the houses of James B. Gilman and John Bolter, resulting as follows:
James Nixon, Ebenezer Smith and Asa C arrico, Commissioners. Bigelow C. Fenton, Sheriff. James Levin, Coroner. A. M. Jenkins, County Clerk, by appointment.
A. M. Jenkins, first Notary Public in 1825.
James Nixon, first Public Administrator, 1827.
Wm. H. Miller, first School Commissioner, 1845.
A. M. Jenkins, first Circuit Clerk, 1825.
The commissioners for locating the "Seat of Justice," after due deliberation, made formal choice of Cole's Grove. In reward for this honor, John Shaw presented the county with a warantee deed to the south half of the northwest quarter of section nine, township eleven, range two, besides nine lots in Cole's Grove, which, under its new name of Gilead, it held the exalted position of county seat until 1847, when it was changed to Hardin.
The first act of the new County Court was to confirm the choice of Gilead as the county seat. The second was the granting of a license to Jonathan Simons to keep ferry on the Illinois river at his residence where he formerly kept a ferry. Point not stated.
Farther on in the records we come to an order that sounds something like the Blue Laws of Connecticut, and is as follows:
Ordered, that William Frye have a license to keep tavern at his residence for the ensuing year, his paying one dollar tax and complying with the laws in such case made and provided: and that he be allowed to charge and receive the following rates of fare:
To each meal's victuals..........25 cents.
To keeping horse overnight...37 1/2 cents.
To each half pint whiskey......12 1/2 cents.
To each horse fed..................12 1/2 cents.
To each night's lodging............6 1/4 cents.
Rum, gin, brandy, wine, 1/2 pt. 18 3/4 cents.
So it will be seen that for, at least, the necessaries of life people could not then be overcharged.
So ends our history of the most important event in the life of either nation or individual, that is its earliest existence. It is necessarily imperfect. First, from lack of date to first settlements, and to the deeds of these settlers. And again, from inability to bring it down to later events and incorporate the character and condition of the county and its inhabitants through the various changes of the passing years.
We have dealt with the personal interest, and individual affairs of the county, rather than with its political or descriptive changes, statistics that might record its progress in wealth and influence. At some future day we may take it up aud publish its record up to the present day, and so leave bright to a coming age what has been dark to us. To this end we would wish to receive from the old settlers such correction of dates or additional events as it may be in their power or pleasure to give. With our highest regards and kindest wishes to the people of this county, and without further apology, this is respectfully submitted.
The foregoing history was republished on July 28, 1904, by
Thos. D. Bare, Editor.