Kansas Historical Quarterly - Bypaths of Kansas History - November 1938
(Vol. 7, No. 4), pages 411 to 434.
Transcribed by lhn;
digitized with permission of the Kansas Historical Society.
The sign used by members of the "Abolition Aid Society" is disclosed to Proslavery adherents in this article in the Squatter Sovereign, of Atchison, March 27, 1855,
ABOLITION AID SOCIETY.-The following is the mode of recognition by the members of this society: They have a piece of leather twelve inches in length, cut in the shape of a horse shoe. About one half the piece, including the middle, is one inch in width; the remainder, at each end, is cut much smaller, being a small string. This piece of leather is worn in the left vest pocket. Whenever used, it is taken out by the right hand and carelessly strapped over the left. If this is answered by another in the same way-though strangers to each other-they are at once friends: BRUNSWICKER.
FRIENDS FROM ACROSS THE BORDER
The editor of the Proslavery Atchison Squatter Sovereign, a former Missourian, welcomes old friends to Kansas territory two weeks before the March 30, 1855, election for members of the territory's legislative assembly. The editorial was printed March 13.
Within the last few days we have welcomed to Kansas a great many of our old friends from Missouri. They are coming in to make permanent settlement, and we are glad to see them in before the election, as it is very obvious that our nominal governor is devoting all his time to try and carry the ensuing election for the Abolitionists. He is (we have no doubt) delaying the election as long as he dare, for the purpose of getting as many of his Negro thieving friends from Thayer & Co., as he can, prior to the election, and to drill his secret confederates as thoroughly as possible before the fight comes off. Won't it be a glorious sight to see this regiment of his Excellency's? Fallstaff's ragged regiment would be beautiful compared to it. And it is intimated that they will really have death-dealing revolvers and huge bowie knives; every ragged rascal of them. We hope none of the "bloody villains" will come this way, "our folks" are not used to the smell of gunpowder, and the gleaming of knives, it makes us feel like fainting to talk about it, we really think the government ought to be called on, to protect us from these bloody minded Thayer men.
We hope our timid friends in Missouri will not be scared out of their intention of coming here, however, perhaps we may persuade them not to hurt us. Provisions are scarce in Kansas, we would therefore suggest to the emigrants to bring their guns and ammunition with them, as game is very abundant, deer, turkeys &c., and a Missourian can always make a living with his gun in a game country. We would also advise that they bring plenty of well
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twisted Hemp rope, as there may be a great many Ne- horse thieves about the time of our election, and it might be necessary to hang some of them by way of example, and to prevent the shedding of blood, as Cromwell once said, when he ordered a company to be shot.
We are order loving and law abiding men, but until we make laws, we are HIGHER-law men. We go in for hanging thieves of all kinds, as HIGH as HAMAN, as a gentle hint to evil disposed men, to deter them from the commission of crime.
KANSAS LEGISLATORS AT DINNER IN 1855
The Kansas legislature was meeting at Shawnee Methodist mission in Johnson county in the summer of 1855, when James Redpath, correspondent of the St. Louis (Mo.) Democrat, described dinner with the legislators in this dispatch published in The Daily Democrat, August 23, 1855.
WESTPORT, Wednesday Aug. 15, 1855.
Westport is a thriving, bustling, and, at present, muddy little city, four miles from Kansas City, one mile from the boundary line which separates the territory from the state, and two miles and a half from the Shawnee Methodist mission. Its population, I believe, is about, 800. It supports a Methodist and a Union church, two large hotels, several bar-rooms, (no booksellers' stores) and a weekly newspaper, which changed into a daily at the commencement of the legislative session, and is now published tri-weekly. From the usual appearance of Westport, I should judge that a brisk business is regularly transacted here.
The legislators board either at Westport or at the mission. At the mission about one half of them are accommodated night and day. The others sleep, breakfast and take supper here, some of them returning daily for dinner also.
Three, sometimes four stages, ply between Westport and the mission three or four times a day. A stage also runs regularly from Kansas City to Westport,and occasionally visits the mission.
The fare to the mission is twenty-five cents a trip; to return at noon for dinner, therefore, costs fifty cents. The same sum is charged for dinner at the mission. Those who prefer dining "very well" in preference to dining "plainly," return to Westport at noon; those who prefer their ease to the gratification of their palates, bid them good speed, but remain at their posts. Of course I always remain. I think, as the Indians very truthfully remark, "it is better to sit than to ride."
Shortly after twelve o'clock-generally a few minutes after the house adjourns, the first dinner bell rings. Dinner bells in this section, I may state, are huge affairs-they are hung at the top of the house-and their sound is heard at least a mile off. As soon as honorable members hear the bell ring, there is a sudden stampede from the "Manual Labor School" to Mr. Johnson's house, in which the dining-room, kitchen and lounging room is situated. The distance between the two buildings is about two hundred yards. As soon as our Solons reach it, they proceed to the front door and sit on forms and
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chairs under the verandah, discussing bills, (not bills of fare, but legislative documents,) past, present and to come, newspaper criticisms on members' conduct, political rumors and territorial interests, till the second bell rings. They then besiege the door of the dining-room, and generally manage to play off practical jokes until the "dinner horn" sounds and the door is thrown open. The members are very gallant-"Make way for the ladies, gentlemen," is a ruse which has often opened a file in the ranks of the dining-room door besiegers, to enable the wag who uttered it to walk into the foremost row with the greatest ease. Cutting out letters in the printed "Notice" pasted on the door-making left hand table read left hand tale, rates for dinner, rats for the same meal, &c., is another popular dining-room door amusement. I won't mention the cunning fox-and-crow custom of praising some modest man's "personal pulchriture"-if he happens to be very near the door,-so immoderately that he is at last forced to retire to the hindmost ranks to "hide his blushes." I won't mention it, I say, because it is as obviously stolen from AEsop as many of the statutes passed at the mission are "cribbed" from the Missouri code, and I wish to notice original features only.
"When the dining room door opens, there is a rush-but unto what shall I liken it? The meeting of mighty waters, to use the refined phraseology of Young America, is certainly "no circumstance." The first interview of long separated lovers fails to convey an idea of it. "Itself alone can be its parallel." The dining room is a long, lofty, dingy apartment, at the further end of which, (one smells on entering it) the kitchen is situated. Two parallel tables support the fare, and forms a support to the consumers of it. The left hand table is appropriated to the-I can't say goats, because Free Soilers in Kansas are so designated, so I will merely say, the members of both houses, judges, the governor, (they call him only "squire" now,) and the young ladies who may be out there visiting the legislature, and the wives of the various "courts" and other sons of Blackstone. The right hand table is appropriated by outsiders in general-officers, distinguished strangers, reporters, printers, and often clergymen.
At the head of the left hand table sits Gov. Reeder; but, since his last memorable veto, he seldom enters until nearly all the others have left. At the head of our table sits the president of the council, our host the Rev. Mr. Johnson. As soon as all are seated, he gives a "thump" with the handle of a knife on the table. Silence ensues. A grace is then asked by himself. "Now comes the tug of war." Knives and forks ply, and corn-cake, milk and breads of various sorts disappear with a rapidity unparalleled, except by the denizens of the 19th century.
Our fare is good, but simple, and toujours la menne. It consists of liquors, butter, sweet milk and pure water in unlimited quantities. "Solids": Cornbread, wheat-bread, boiled or roast beef, and boiled ham. Vegetables: Potatoes, tomatoes, boiled cabbages, cucumbers, (not sure of this item, but think I've seen them) boiled corn, boiled corn-heads. Pies: Sometimes a piece of blackberry pie, but generally none. Aids to consumption: Hunger. No butter or wine allowed. Puddings: None. Extras: Grace before meat.
After dinner, members again return to their rendezvous at the front door, but I have observed that their conversation is invariably less eager and the differences in their opinions less obvious to a listener, after what Mr. Breck-
414 KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
endoff's housekeeper called "the noon-meal," than before it. In a short time they proceed to the legislative chamber-which is a dingy square school room, with five windows at one side and four windows at the other. A raised platform, on which the speaker sits, supplies the place of the window on one side. The desks at which the members sit are the ordinary desks used at common schools in some sections of our country-in Missouri for aught I know to the contrary. I began this letter to occupy one hour I hardly knew how to dispose of. It is finished, and my paper is. In my next extra letter I will give you a brief description of the personal appearance and habits of the prominent members of the house of representatives. J. R.
LIFE IN EARLY-DAY TOPEKA
From the Salem (Mass.) Register, February 25, 1856.
Extracts from a letter of an emigrant to Kansas [James Cowles?] to his brother, a resident in Essex county: TOPEKA, KANZAS TERRITORY,
Jan. 22, 1856.
Doubtless, long before this, you have been made acquainted with my Kanzas enterprise, and my attempt to establish for myself a home here.-Shall I give you some little account of my goings and doings?
My next plan was to migrate to the remote West, "where Nature is young." At this period arose the cry of free and Christian emigration to Kanzas. It was a. rallying cry to me; every nerve was strung, every power moved. I resolved to sell all that I had and embark in the enterprise.
I left my home in A-, Ohio, at 8 o'clock in the morning, June 4th, 1855. I had sold my house and lots in M., and had pocketed about $400. I was more than two weeks in reaching the frontiers of the territory, owing to delays and to the sickness, on the Missouri, of a man with whom I fell in company. I arrived at Leavenworth, June 20, and joined a party of four to take a foot tramp by the government road to Fort Riley, 150 miles, and got my meals with the seventeen teamsters who, each with an ox-team of five or six yokes, were transporting provisions to the fort, or at the squatters' houses by the way. The first night, a lovely one in June, I slept on my old red chest, the same that once held the treasure of the paternal household, under the open canopy of heaven, with my umbrella over my head and a sheet over my legs to absorb the dew-a sleep sweet and refreshing. That night, you may be sure, I thought of R. and my three little ones, and of the long months that might intervene before our re-union. But morning came, and bright hope arose. The landscape under my eye was gorgeous and tearfully beautiful. Mounds of prairie, covered with fresh verdure, were swelling and sinking before me.
I reached Fort Riley, or rather Pawnee, one mile down stream, on Thursday, June 29. I called in passing at Topeka, on the south side of the river, to see my nephew H. B. C. I found him at work putting up a composite building of stone and mortar. I took a slight view of the place and pursued my journey. I stopped also a short time at Manhattan, a Cincinnati settlement on the north side of the river, within ten or twelve miles of the fort. There were there, at
BYPATHS OF KANSAS HISTORY 415
that time, six or eight houses built of Cincinnati lumber. The whole town is situated on the Kanzas bottom, but a few feet above the water, and liable to be overflowed at any time.
As to Pawnee, it had begun to leak out that its plat was on the military reservation, and of course its prospect as a town site was "nowhere."
At this point I revolved in my mind what I should do. Of all the places I had seen, Topeka stood fairest to afford the means of accomplishing my ends, and my course for the future was marked out. Divine Providence, in answer to much prayer for guidance, seemed to point. directly to this place.
I arrived here July 3d, at evening. Fixed now as to place, the next thing to look for was employment. A fair opportunity of profitable employment with a team of oxen offered, and I bought two yokes and appurtenances. With these I went to work, hired my nephew H. to drive them, and sometimes went myself.
In this employment I have been tolerably successful. I purchased a fine cow and calf, worth thirty dollars. The cow still yields five quarts of milk a day, most of which I sell at five cents a quart. My plan embraced the limiting of the expenses of my whole establishment to the narrowest possible extent. To this end I purchased a cooking stove for $30, to do my own cooking by, and erected a small cabin of cotton wood bark to live in. With my team, I hauled logs to mill, plowed, broke prairie sod, and teamed it generally, besides working some with my tools.
About the 1st of October I had gathered fifteen tons of hay for wintering my stock, and in three short days thereafter had the chagrin to see it all burned up by the dashing prairie fires, that sweep over this entire land during the fall months. I have witnessed some of the sublimest spectacles of this kind. They are quite as exciting as city conflagrations.
About the same time I fell sick with ague and fever, which continued to keep me prostrate, or retard my movements, for more than a month. This brought me to November. I had now to replace my hay-mow with corn and corn fodder, or frost-bitten prairie grass, which was expensive, as I had to hire the most of it done.
During all this time I have steadily kept in view the school-room as the theatre of my usefulness.-During August, a project was set on foot to get up a class for a young lady resident here. A school meeting was called, and a school committee appointed, myself a member of it. The subscription was raised, the teacher engaged, and the house provided; but the school, through the sickness of the teacher and the scholars, and the unfitness of the house to withstand the cold, did not well succeed. During the progress of that school, immigration of families had been going on from Providence, R. I., New Bedford and Boston, Mass., Portsmouth, N. H., and various places in Maine. -It seemed as though this was the time for me to move. I visited the families, obtained pledges for about seventeen scholars, and set the time, Jan. 2d, for opening the school. But when January 2d came, winter had set in in good earnest. People could hardly keep comfortable in the best of our houses except over a stove, much less in unfinished houses. No finished room can be had. I rented a corner of a stone building with good floor and one window, made wind-tight by rags instead of mortar and rough-board partition battened with paper, for the joint purpose of living in it and holding my schools--
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singing and day schools. The singing school is actually in progress. The day school may also flourish on the return of the mild winter weather to which Kanzas is believed to be entitled.
Since my residence here, I have enjoyed the proofs of the confidence of my fellow citizens in being elected delegate to several important conventions, though I am no politician. I have been chosen teacher of a Bible class, and am often called upon, in the absence of ordained preachers, to conduct religious services on the Sabbath. These are being held at present in my own hired room, and we have many precious interviews. I can not but look upon these as indications of my Heavenly Father's will that I should abide here and fulfill humbly my delightful tasks.
My stay in Kanzas has been, hitherto, a life of great bodily toil, but accompanied with many proofs of divine favor. There is a great need of good men here to fix the standard of integrity and the other sterling points of true Christian character, as well as to keep up religious meetings; and I bless God that we have many such. I have had the happiness of meeting here many Christian people from the New England states, stimulated to emigrate to Kanzas from the same impulses as myself. I really feel as though God had sent me here for some good end, and my prayer is that He will help me accomplish it.
Topeka (though at my first acquaintance with it possessed no other advantages than a delightful situation, surrounded as it is by the most charming rolling prairie, skirted frequently with ravines filled with a growth of timber, brush-wood and vines) has grown within seven months to a place of considerable note. It has not, however, like its near neighbor, Lawrence, twenty-five miles east, been made the butt of Missouri bluster and invasion with bloody intent; but it has been made the place of the meeting of several important state conventions.
The first in order was a convention called to confer on the expediency of forming a state government. This met Sept. 23. The result of its deliberations was an almost unanimous approval of the project, and an order was left for the election of delegates to form a constitution. These delegates met at Topeka, Oct. 23, and drew up a state constitution, which in most respects may be regarded as a model. This convention appointed a day for the election of legislators, who should meet in general assembly at Topeka on the 4th of March prox. So you will see that our prospects seem fair for becoming the permanent seat of government. Add to these circumstances the fact of our central position to all inhabited parts of the territory, the centering of roads at this point from various parts for the crossing of the Kanzas as, for example,
the California road crossing at Papan's ferry-and you have a favorable picture. On the contingency of our admission as a free state, by the present congress, of which, in my judgment, there is little doubt, depends a large immigration in the spring into the territory, and especially to the new made capital. As to claims, they may still be had within a few miles of this place. I have taken one, distant about seven miles, a most beautiful prairie, with one or two ravines passing through it, furnishing water throughout the year, and underlaid, as I am informed, with beds of coal. Some of the coal of this stratum, which "crops out" on the bluff of the Kanzas, about three miles to the west of Topeka, I have seen and handled, and it is equal to the coal of
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Tallmadge, or any of the northern Ohio mines. The bed at its present working is sixteen inches thick, good coal.
The present population of the place I am not able to state definitely. You may form some estimate of it from the vote just cast for members of the legislature. The entire vote of this election precinct was 145. Rents are very high. One of our best houses, one and a half stories, 18 by 30, rents for $20 per month. Other houses which cost from $100 to $200, rent at from $7 to $10 per month. Next spring there will be a huge outcry for houses to rent, which our present tenements can by no means supply. The legislature must be accommodated, or they will adjourn to Lawrence, an event greatly feared among us.
Again, city property is fast rising in value. The city association have laid out their grounds on a very generous scale, making the principal streets, or avenues, 130 feet wide, and other streets 80 ft.; the building lots 75 by 150; and have made presents of one or two lots to any person who shall put up one or more habitable dwellings on one of them~I have one of these, on which I have commenced building a frame house, 16 by 34, two stories high, which I mean to complete on the return of warm weather. I intend to use the upper floor as a school-room, and to rent the lower one to a family. I candidly think that it is rare to find a place in which investments are safer, or a fair return of profits surer, than here in Topeka, whose prospects of growth are enhanced by the impress of Freedom fresh upon it.
As to my own person, I may say, you would hardly recognize your brother. He has become full, fat and sleek. He subsists almost entirely on mush and milk, and corn and Graham bread. His cheeks, for fourteen years last past, sunken, thin and pale, are now plump and ruddy. Kanzas is a hungry country. I never ate so much in all time before. Others say the same. There are few thin faces here; none wear them who live on the delicious staple of the country, corn. Our meal is coarsely ground, but is sweet beyond comparison. We bolt it as it goes. Our beef is richer, tenderer, and fatter, than that East- ward. The wild prairie grass is unsurpassed for fattening or working uses. One can form little idea of the luxuriance of the growth, without seeing it. Last October, I mowed in grass as high as my head; and there were unnumbered acres of it. In truth, I am delighted with this country, even to tears sometimes, for its resources, its beauty and its prospects. C.
From The Kansas Weekly Herald, Leavenworth City, February 6, 1858.
Brigham Young tried to induce a chief of the Snake Indians to join him in fighting the United States. The reply of the Indian shows that he understands the "neutrality" policy. Said he: "When redskin fight redskin, blue-coat stands by and look on; when blue-coat fight blue-coat, redskin stands by and look on; when blue-coat fight redskin, redskin turns his back---blue-coat is very great."
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From the Neosho Valley Register, Burlington, August 11, 1860.
A bloody fight between the Arapahoes and Cheyennes, on the one side, and the Delawares and Pottawatomies on the other, took place a few days ago on Solomon's Fork, about one hundred miles above Fort Riley, in which three hundred of the latter tribes were killed. Some of the most prominent members of those tribes, well known to the whites of eastern Kansas, were numbered among the slain. The Arapahoes and Cheyennes are getting to be very troublesome on the plains, and emigrants traversing them and settlers on the extreme borders are suffering daily from their operations.
THE KANSAS STAR OFFICIALLY BECOMES A PART OF THE FLAG
While Abraham Lincoln, President-elect of the United States, was en route to Washington for his inaugural he participated in a flag- raising ceremony in Philadelphia which was described as follows in contemporaneous press accounts.
From the New York Tribune, February 23, 1861.
PHILADELPHIA, Friday, Feb. 22, 1861.
The ceremony of raising the flag of 34 stars over the Hall of Independence this morning, by Mr. Lincoln, was attended with all the solemnity due such an occasion, the scene being an impressive one. At the rising of the sun crowds of people streamed from all parts of the city toward the state house, and very soon every inch of ground was occupied, a vast number of ladies being present. The weather was cool and bracing.
At 7 o'clock Mr. Lincoln was escorted to the hall, and there received by Theodore Cuyler, who warmly welcomed him to its venerable walls in the hour of national peril and distress, when the great work achieved by the wisdom and patriotism of our fathers seems threatened with instant ruin. Mr. Lincoln responded as follows:
Mr. Cuyler: I am filled with deep emotion at finding myself standing here, in this place, where were collected together the wisdom, the patriotism, the devotion to principle, from which sprang the institutions under which we live. You have kindly suggested to me that in my hands is the task of restoring peace to the present distracted condition of the country. I can say in return, Sir, that all the political sentiments I entertain have been drawn, so far as I have been able to draw them, from the sentiments which originated and were given to the world from this hall. I have never had a feeling politically that did not spring from the sentiments embodied in the Declaration of Independence. I have often pondered over the dangers which were incurred by the men who assembled here, and framed and adopted that Declaration of Independence. I have pondered over the toils that were endured by the officers and soldiers of the army who achieved that independence. I have often inquired of myself what great principle or idea it was that kept this confederacy so long together. It was not the mere matter of the separation of the colonies from
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the mother land; but that sentiment in the Declaration of Independence which gave liberty, not alone to the people of this country, but, I hope, to the world for all future time. (Great applause.) It was that which gave promise that in due time the weight would be lifted from the shoulders of all men. This is a sentiment embodied in the Declaration of Independence. Now, my friends, can this country be saved upon that basis? If it can, I will consider myself one of the happiest men in the world, if I can help to save it. If it cannot be saved upon that principle, it will be truly awful. But if this country cannot be saved without giving up that principle, I was about to say I would rather be assassinated on this spot than surrender it. (Applause.) Now, in my view of the present aspect of affairs, there need be no bloodshed or war. There is no necessity for it. I am not in favor of such a course, and I may say in advance, that there will be no bloodshed unless it be forced upon the government, and then it will be compelled to act in self-defense. (Applause.) My friends, this is wholly an unexpected speech, and I did not expect to be called upon to say a word when I came here. I supposed it was merely to do something toward raising the flag. I may, therefore, have said something indiscreet. (Cries of "No, no.") I have said nothing but what I am willing to live by and, if it be the pleasure of Almighty God, die by.
Mr. Lincoln concluded amid great applause.
The members of the city council paid their respects to him, and the procession moved directly toward the platform erected in front of the state house. On Mr. Lincoln's appearance on the platform he was hailed with outbursts of applause from the surrounding multitude.
Mr. Benton of the select council made a brief address inviting Mr. Lincoln to raise the flag.
Mr. Lincoln replied in a patriotic speech, stating a cheerful compliance with the request. He alluded to the original flag of thirteen stars, saying that the number had increased as time rolled on, and we became a happy, powerful people, each star adding to its prosperity. The future is in the hands of the people. It was on such an occasion we could reason together, reaffirm our devotion to the country, and the principles of the Declaration of Independence. Let us make up our minds that whenever we do put a new star upon our banner, it shall be a fixed one, never to be dimmed by the horrors of war, but brightened by the contentment and prosperity of peace. Let us go on to extend the area of our usefulness, add star upon star until their light shall shine over five hundred millions of a free and happy people. Mr. Lincoln then threw off his overcoat in an offhand, easy manner, the backwoodsian style of which caused many good-natured remarks.
The Rev. Mr. Clark addressed the Throne of Grace in an impressive prayer, many spectators uncovering themselves, when the flag was rolled up in a man- of-war style, then adjusted, a signal fired, and, amid the most excited enthusiasm, the President-elect hoisted the national ensign. A stiff breeze caught the folded bunting and threw it out boldly to the winds. Cheer followed cheer, until hoarseness prevented a continuance.
The ceremony over, Mr. Lincoln returned to the Continental hotel, followed by an excited crowd, breakfasted soon after, and departed for the Pennsylvania railroad depot.
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From Harper's Weekly, New York, March 9, 1861.
We publish on the preceding page a picture-from photographs taken at the time-of Mr. Lincoln raising the stars and stripes opposite Independence hall, Philadelphia, on the morning of Washington's birthday. Just in front of the main entrance to the state house, and but a few feet from the sacred hall of liberty, a large platform had been erected for the President-elect to stand upon before the people while he raised the starry banner of the republic. The elevation, nearly six feet, enabled a vast multitude to observe every thing enacted thereon. The front and sides of the stage were wrapped around with an American flag, while lesser flags floated from the stanchions.
Before the flag was raised prayer was offered, and Mr. S. Benton, on behalf of the city of Philadelphia, addressed Mr. Lincoln in words of welcome. The President replied as follows:
"Fellow Citizens.-I am invited and called before you to participate in raising above Independence hall the flag of our country, with an additional star upon it. (Cheers.) I propose now, in advance of performing this very pleasant and complimentary duty, to say a few words. I propose to say that when that flag was originally raised here it had but thirteen stars. I wish to call your attention to the fact that, under the blessing of God, each additional star added to that flag has given additional prosperity and happiness to this country, until it has advanced to its present condition; and its welfare in the future, as well as in the past, is in your hands. (Cheers.) Cultivating the spirit that animated our fathers, who gave renown and celebrity to this hall, cherishing that fraternal feeling which has so long characterized us as a nation, excluding passion, ill-temper, and precipitate action on all occasions, I think we may promise ourselves that not only the new star placed upon that flag shall be permitted to remain there to our permanent prosperity for years to come, but additional ones shall from time to time be placed there, until we shall number, as was anticipated by the great historian, five hundred millions of happy and prosperous people. (Great applause.) With these few remarks, I proceed to the very agreeable duty assigned me."
We copy from the Philadelphia Press the following account of the actual raising of the flag:
"The excitement was of a fearful character when the President-elect seized the rope to hoist the flag of the country to the crest of the staff over the state house. The souls of all seemed starting from their eyes, and every throat was wide. The shouts of the people were like the roar of waves which do not cease to break. For full three minutes the cheers continued. The expression of the President-elect was that of silent solemnity. His long arms were extended. Each hand alternately pulled at the halyards, and a bundle of bunting, tricolored, which had never been kissed by the wind before, slowly rose into the sky. If the shouting had been fearful and tumultuous before, it became absolutely maniacal now. From the smallest urchin to the tall form which rivaled the President's in compass of chest and length of limb, there rose a wild cry. It reminded us of some of the storied shouts which rang among the Scottish hills in the days of clans and clansmen. Suddenly, when the broad bunting had reached the summit of the mast it unrolled at once, and blazed in the sunlight. At the same moment the band struck up the "Star Spangled Banner," and a cannon ranged in the square sent up peal after peal.
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Mr. Lincoln was then escorted to his hotel, and in a short time the crowd had melted away, many going back to their yet untasted breakfast, and the rest moving off as business or pleasure prompted."
From the St. Marys Times, November 17, 1876.
A whole troop, of visiting Indians, passed through town one day this week bound for the south. The chief was evidently an aristocratic old scalper, as he lay full length in the foremost wagon wrapped in a bright red blanket, with many evident luxuries about him, and the rest of the troop followed on horse-back or in wagons as their worldly wealth permitted. Wagons loaded with goods and baggage, saddle ponies laden with baggage and squaws and children perched on top, also, many loose ponies following in the train as presents from the tribe they visited. The cavalcade presented a decidedly unique appearance and excited much interest as they filed slowly through the streets.
"UNKNOWN-KILLED BY THE INDIANS"
From the Dodge City Times, November 23, 1878.
S. B. Williams and C. E. Moore, who have sheep ranches south, called at, our office Thursday, and reported having found the dead body of a man, on the big bend of Crooked creek, seven miles east of Ganz's. The body is described as follows: Height 5 feet 9 inches; light curly hair tinged with gray; thin sandy whiskers; about 50 years; one tooth in upper part of mouth broken. Had on brown cotton coat, cotton shirt, red stoga shoes, common red overalls; black hat, narrow brim. Supposed to have been killed by Indians. Two holes in shirt indicated that shot passed through from side to side. A bullet was found 100 yards from the body. The body laid flat, face down. There was nothing to identify it. Some pieces of Ford county maps and some wheat chaff were found in vest pockets.
Mr. Williams wrapped the body, which was nothing more than skin and bones, in some blankets, and buried it where it lay. He marked a head board "Unknown-killed by the Indians."
Could the plains give up their dead, what tales would be told! How many have died with their "boots on"-"unwept, unhonored, unsung."
STREAMLINING IN 1911
From The Jefferson County Tribune, Oskaloosa, March 17, 1911.
The Seneca accommodation on the Missouri Pacific got within two miles of McLouth Monday evening before it jumped the track which is considered quite a record for the Seneca accommodation. The train was going all of seven miles an hour when the tender hit the ties and owing to the excessive speed the train ran 150 yards on the ties before a stop could be made. That is the engineer's report of the affair, but passengers on the train say that he did not know he was off until a farmer climbed over the fence and told him. The train was delayed about an hour.