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Auglaize County

Page 293

AUGLAIZE COUNTY was formed in 1848 from portions of Allen, Logan, Darke, Shelby, Mercer and Van Wert counties. It is at the southern termination of the Black Swamp district, and occupies the great dividing ridge between the head waters of Lake Erie and Ohio river. Only the northwestern part possesses the peculiar characteristics of the “Black Swamp;” by ditching the greater part has been brought tinder cultivation. The Mercer county reservoir, a great artificial lake of 17,500 acres and an average of ten feet in depth, is partly in this county; it abounds with fish, ducks and geese. The population is largely of German origin. It contains 400 square miles. In 1885 the acres cultivated were 131,205; in pasture, 14,997; woodland, 60,842; lying waste, 1,346; produced in wheat, 594,538 bushels; in corn, 1,330,471; barley, 18,795; tobacco, 7,600 pounds. School census in 1886, 9,566; teachers, 140. It has 39 miles of railroad.

 

Township

And Census

1840

1880

 

Township

And Census

1880

1880

Clay,

   840

1,346

 

Noble,

   309

1,303

Duchouquet,

   905

4,971

 

Pusheta,

1,008

1,456

German,

1,470

2,239

 

Saint Mary’s,

   693

3,147

Goshen,

   336

   796

 

Salem,

   400

1,160

Jackson,

 

1,991

 

Union,

1,008

1,590

Logan,

   336

1,206

 

Washington,

   688

1,515

Moulton,

   450

1,436

 

Wayne,

   672

1,288

 



Population in 1850 was 11,341; in 1860, 17,187; in 1880, 25,444, of whom 21,040 were Ohio-born.

 

In this county three specimens of the mastodon have been discovered as stated in historical sketch in the County Atlas—first in 1870 in Clay township; second, in 1874 also in Clay; third, in 1878 in Washington. The mastodon differed from the elephant in being somewhat larger and thicker though in general not unlike it. Cuvier called it mastodon from the form of its teeth; the name is from two Greek words signifying “nipple teeth.” The bones of the mastodon have been discovered over a large part of the United States and Canada; the bones of a hundred have been discovered at Big Bone Lick, Ky., and probably as many in different parts of this State.

 

The parts of skeleton No. 1 show it to have been an animal about fourteen feet high, eighteen feet long and with tusks probably twenty-seven feet. It was found while excavating a ditch through Muchinippi swamp eight feet from the surface, which for the first third was peat and the rest marly clay. The bones were discovered in a posture natural to an animal sinking in the mire. It is supposed it lost its life within 500 or 1,000 years after the deposition of the drift in which the marsh deposits rest. The remains of No. 2 were found in the same swamp. Only a few relics of No. 3 have been discovered. The ground being boggy there it is supposed that all the remainder of the skeleton awaits only search for its recovery, and in good preservation.

 

After the remnant of the powerful and noble tribe of Shawnee Indians were driven from Piqua, by General George Rogers CLARK, which was in 1780, they settled a town here, which they called Wapaghkonetta, and the site of the now county-seat. Early in the century there was at the place a fine orchard, which from its being planted in regular order was supposed to have been the work of Frenchmen settled among the Indians. By the treaty at the Maumee rapids, in 1817, the Shawnees were given a reservation of ten miles square in this county, within which was their council-house at Wapakoneta, and also a tract of twenty-five square miles, which included their settlement on Hog creek; by the treaty of

 

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the succeeding year, made at St. Mary’s, 12,800 acres adjoining the east line of the Wapakoneta reserve were added.

 

From the year 1796 till the formation of the State constitution, Judge BURNET, of Cincinnati, attended court regularly at Marietta and Detroit, the last of which was then the seat of justice for Wayne county.

 

The jaunts between these remote places, through a wilderness, were attended with exposure, fatigue and hazard, and were usually performed on horseback, in parties of two or three or more. On one of these occasions, while halting at Wapakoneta, he witnessed a game of ball among the people, of which he has given this interesting narrative:

 

BLUE JACKET, the war-chief, who commanded the Shawnees in the battle of 1794, at Maumee, resided in the village, but was absent. We were, however, received with kindness by the old village chief, BUCKINGELAS.

 

When we went to his lodge he was giving audience to a deputation of chiefs from some western tribes. We took seats at his request till the conference was finished, and the strings of wampum were disposed of. He gave us no intimation of the subject-matter of the conference, and of course we could not, with propriety, ask for it.

 

Indians playing Football.—In a little time he called in some of his young men, and requested them to get up a game of football for our amusement. A purse of trinkets was soon made up, and the whole village, male and female, were on the lawn. At these games the men played against the women, and it was a rule that the former were not to touch the ball with their hands on penalty of forfeiting the purse; while the latter had the privilege of picking it up, running with, and throwing it as far as they could. When a squaw had the ball the men were allowed to catch and shake her, and even throw her on the ground, if necessary to extricate the ball from her hand, but they were not allowed to touch or move it, except by their feet. All the opposite extremes of the lawn, which was a beautiful plain, thickly set with blue grass stakes were erected, about six feet apart—the contending parties arrayed themselves in front of these stakes; the men on the one side, and the women on the other. The party which succeeded in driving the ball through the stakes, at the goal of their opponents, were proclaimed victors, and received the purse. All thing being the old chief went to the centre of the lawn and threw up the ball, making an exclamation, in the Shawnee language, which we did not understand. He immediately retired, and the contest began. The parties seemed to be fairly matched as to numbers, having about a hundred on a side.

 

The game lasted more than an hour with great animation, but was finally decided in favor of the ladies, by the power of an herculean squaw, who got the ball and in spite of the men who seized her to shake it from her uplifted hand, held it firmly, dragging them along, till she was sufficiently near the goal to throw it through the stakes. The young squaws were the most active of their party, and, of course, most frequently caught the ball. When they did so it was amusing to see the strife between them and the young Indians, who immediately seized them, and always succeeded in rescuing the ball, though sometimes they could not effect their object till their female competitors were thrown on the grass. When the contending parties had retired from the field of strife it was pleasant to see the feelings of exultation depicted in the faces of the victors whose joy was manifestly enhanced by the fact, that their victory was won in the presence of white men, whom they supposed to be highly distinguished, and of great power in their nation. This was a natural conclusion for them to draw, as they knew we were journeying to Detroit for the purpose of holding the general court; which, they supposed, controlled and governed the nation. We spent the night very pleasantly among them, and in the morning resumed our journey.

 

In August, 1831, treaties were made with the Senecas of Lewiston and the Shawnees of Wapakoneta, by James GARDINER, Esq., and Col. John M’ELVAIN, special commissioners appointed for this purpose, by which the Indians consented to give up their land and remove beyond the Mississippi. The Shawnees had at this time about 66,000 acres in this county, and in conjunction with the Senecas about 40,300 acres at Lewiston. The Indians were removed to the Indian Territory on Kansas river, in the Far West, in September, 1832, D. M. WORKMAN and David ROBB being the agents for their removal. The removal of the Indians opened the country to the settlement of the whites. Therefore in 1833 the present town of Wapakoneta was platted; the original proprietors were Robert J. SKINNER, Thomas B. VAN HORNE, Joseph BARNETT, Jonathan. K. WILDS and Peter

 

Page 295

 

AUGENBAUGH. Up to this time from early in the century the Friends had a mission here among the Indians.

 

WAPAKONETA, the county-seat; seventy-five miles northwest of Columbus, is on the C. H. & D. R. R. It is situated within the oil and gas belt, both of which have been struck in considerable quantities. The surrounding country is, a rich agricultural district, and there is much manufacturing done in wooden articles. More churns, it is claimed, are made here than in any other place in the country. County officers in 1888: Probate Judge, John McLAIN; Clerk of Court, James A. NICHOLS; Sheriff, Wm. SCHULENBERG; Prosecuting Attorney, Cyrenius A. LAYTON; Auditor, Wm. F. TORRANCE; Treasurer, Colby C. PEPPLE; Recorder, John J. CONNAUGHTON; Surveyor, John B. WALSH; Coroner, F. C. Hunter; Commissioners, Henry KOOP, George VAN OSS John REICHELDERER.

 

Newspapers: Auglaize Republican, Republican, W. J. McMURRAY, editor; Auglaize County Democrat, Democrat, Fred. B. KAMPF, editor. Churches: 1 English Lutheran, 1 Evangelist German Protestant, 1 Methodist, 1 Presbyterian, l Catholic, 1 German Lutheran. Banks: First National, L. N. BLUME, president; C. F. HERBST, cashier; People’s National, F. FRITCH, president, F. J. McFARLAND, cashier.

 

Will E. Potter, Photo, Wapakoneta, 1887.

CENTRAL VIEW IN WAPAKONETA.

 

 

Manufactures and EmployeesStenger & Frank, flour, etc.; Wapakoneta Bending Co., spokes and rims, 50 hands; J. Gately, lumber; Theodore Dickman, builders’ wood-work; Rupp & Winemiller, limber; Wapakoneta Churn & Handle Co., churns and handles, 47; M. Brown & Co., washing machines, etc., 29; Swink Bros. & Co., furniture, etc., 17; C. Fisher, flour, etc., 7; Wapakoneta Spoke & Wheel Co., wheels and spokes, 50.--State Report 1887.

 

Population in 1880 2,765. School census in 1886, 1,291; J. T. CARSON, superintendent.

 

TRAVELLING NOTES.

 

A pleasant, name for a place is desirable. Every inhabitant unconsciously derives from it a benefit; it is a happy association. This is proved by the reverse. What interest could we take in a people who lived in “Hard Scrabble” or “swineville?” Wapakoneta enjoys the distinction of having, with possibly a single exception—”Pataskala”—the most original and musical name in the State. The word has the flavor of antiquity; this enhances the charm, carries the mind back to the red man and the wilderness.

 

Col. John JOHNSTON, agent among the

 

Page 296

 

 

THE HILLS OF OHIO

From “The Key of the West” by Alex. Auld.

 

1. The hills of Ohio, how sweetly they rise,

    In the beauty of nature to blend with the skies;

    When fair azure outline, and tall ancient trees,

    Ohio, my country, I love thee for these.

 

2.  The homes of Ohio, free fortuned, and fair,

     Full many hearts treasure a sister’s love there;

     E’en more than they hill-sides or streamlets they please,

     Ohio, my country, I love thee for these.

 

3.  God shield thee, Ohio, dear land of my birth,

    And thy children that wander afar o’re the earth;

    My country thou art, where’er my lot’s cast,

    Take thou to they bosom my ashes at last.

 

 

 

 

 

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Indians, appointed by Jefferson, thus wrote me in 1846: “Wapagh-ko-netta—this is the true Indian orthography. It was named after an Indian chief long since dead, but who survived years after my intercourse commenced with the Shawanoese. The chief was somewhat club-footed, and the word has reference, I think, to that circumstance, although its full import I never could discover. For many years prior to 1829 I had my Indian headquarters at Wapagh-ko-netta. The business of the agency of the Shawanoese, Wyandots. Senecas, and Delawares was transacted there.”

 

Speaking of the benefit of a good name, let me pursue- the matter a little further. The people of the whole State in this respect have been specially favored. The name of but one other equals it in the merit of brevity. Regardful of the English alphabet, it makes three letters do the business— “O” “H,” “I”—these letters only, inasmuch as the last is only a second appearing of the first. It is the only State the name of which suggests the idea of “elevation;” does this no intemperate sense. The name drops in with song so nicely that, away back early in the century, multitudes sang its praises who had never seen Ohio, living, as they did, by the ocean side; sang them while feasting their eyes with the broad expanse of the rolling blue and breathing in the grateful odors of the salt meadows.

 

Poetry and song ever appeal to the imagination, and so helped its quick settlement. Great things always require them—as war and religion. All soldiers, even savages, have their war songs, and the only religionists among us who have not song are those calm, sweet-tempered people, “the Friends,” and they are fast melting; soon will vanish entirely, when the “thees” and “thous” will be heard no more in the land.  A single verse drops in here as a matter of history. It is from one of the songs that was sung at the East at the end of some game where kissing-never to be a lost art-was going on between young people, who later largely became fathers and mothers out here in the Ohio-land

 

 

“Arise, my true love, and present me your

          hand,

And we’ll march in procession for a far distant

         land:

Where the girls will card and spin,

And the boys will plough and sow,

And we’ll settle on the banks of the pleasant

        Ohio.”

 

 

Suppose an unsavory name had been given to the great river, and then applied to the State. It might have retarded its settlement for years. Say the name of a certain river now in Vermont—“Onion.” Who would have sung its praises? What kind of emigrants would have been attracted, and by what name after they got here would they have been called? As it was, the pioneers were the brightest, bravest, most cheery young people of the East, and their children inheriting their exuberance and pluck, fill the land with hope and song.

 

A song most widely sung is that entitled “The Hills of Ohio” (p. 296), by Alexander AULD published in his “Key of the West.” He was born in Milton, Pa., and came to Ohio in 1822, when a child of six years, and at the age of fifteen began teaching music. He taught music for fifty years, and is still living in Deersville, Harrison county, enjoying a happy, healthy old age. In a letter recently written by himself, he says he first taught by the old four-note system, but that on Christmas eve, 1835, he added to our present musical scale the first, second, and seventh syllables, thereby increasing the popularity and simplicity of his own patent-note system. He is the author of four books, viz.: “The Ohio Harmonist,” “The Key of the West,” The Farmers’ and Mechanics’ Minstrel,” and “The Golden Trumpet.” It is said he sold 600,000 copies of the “Ohio Harmonist,” and about 700,000 of the other three, making in all 7,300,000 of Auld’s singing-book—and these went largely into Ohio homes-hence he is widely known. The words are not original with Mr. AULD, but were set to music and largely sung by emigrants in the early years of this century.

 

Indian Characteristics and Customs.—Mr. David ROBB, one of the agents for the removal of the Indians, had great experience among them, and has left this record of their peculiar traits:

 

Intemperance to a great extent prevailed among the Indians; there was, however, as wide a contrast in this respect as with the whites, and some of the more virtuous refused to associate with the others. This class also cultivated their little farms with a degree of taste and judgment: some of these could cook a comfortable meal, and I have eaten both butter and a kind of cheese made by them. Many of them were quite ingenious and natural mechanics, with a considerable knowledge of and an inclination to use tools. One chief had an assortment of carpenters’ tools which he kept in neat order. He made plows, harrows, wagons, bedsteads, tables, bureaus, etc. He was frank, liberal and conscientious. On my asking him who taught him the use of tools, He replied, no one; then pointing up to the sky, he said, “the Great Spirit taught me.”

 

Fascinations of Indian Character.—With all their foibles and vices there is something fascinating in the Indian character, and one cannot long associate with them without having a perceptible growing attachment. The Indian is emphatically the natural man, and it is an easy thing to make an Indian out of a white person, but very difficult to civilize or Christianize an Indian. I have known a number of whites who had been taken pris-

 

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oners by the Indians when young, and with out exception they formed such attachment; that after being with them some time, they could not be induced to return to their own people. There was a woman among the Shawnees, supposed to be near an hundred years of age, who was taken prisoner, when young, in Eastern Pennsylvania. Some year; after, her friends, through the agency of traders, endeavored to induce her to return but in vain. She became, if possible, more of a squaw in her habits and appearance than any female in the nation.

 

Indian Punctuality.—A sample of their punctuality in performing their contracts, I would state that I have often loaned them money, which was always returned in due season, with a single exception. This was a loan to a young man who promised to pay me when they received their annuity. After the appointed time he shunned me, and the matter remained unsettled until just prior to our departure for their new homes. I then stated the circumstance to one of the chiefs more from curiosity to see how he would receive the intelligence than with the expectation of its being the means of bringing the money. He, thereupon, talked with the lad upon the subject, but, being unsuccessful, he called a council of his brother chiefs, who formed a circle, with the young man in the centre. After talking to him a while in a low tone, they broke out and vociferously reprimanded him for his dishonest conduct but all proved unavailing. Finally, the chiefs in a most generous and noble spirit, made up the amount from their own purses, and pleasantly tendered it to me.

 

Belief in Witchcraft.—The Indians being firm believers in witchcraft, generally attributed sickness and other misfortunes to this cause, and were in the habit of murdering those whom they suspected of practising it. They have been known to travel all the way from the Mississippi to Wapakoneta, and shoot down a person in his cabin merely on suspicion of his being a wizard, and return unmolested. When a person became so sick as to lead them to think he was in danger of death, it was usual for them to place him it the woods alone, with no one to attend except a nurse or doctor, who generally acted as an agent in hurrying on the dissolution, It was distressing to see one in this situation, I have been permitted to do this only through the courtesy of relatives, it being contrary to rule for any to visit them except such as had medical care of them. The whole nation and at liberty to attend the funerals, at which there is generally great lamentation. A chief, who died just previous to their removal, was buried in the following manner.  They bored holes in the lid of his coffin—as their custom—over his eyes and mouth, to let the Good Spirit pass in and out. Over the grave they laid presents, etc.. with provisions, which they affirmed the Good Spirit would take him in the night. Sure enough! –these articles had all disappeared in the morning, by the hand of an evil spirit clothed in a human body. There were many funerals among the Indians, and their numbers rapidly decreased intemperance, and pulmonary and scrofulous diseases, made up a large share of their bills of mortality, and the number of deaths to the births were as one to three.

 

A few anecdotes will illustrate the wit and dishonesty of some, and the tragical encounters of others of the Indians. Col. M’PHERSON the former sub-agent, kept goods for sale, for which they often got in debt. Some were slow in making payments, and one in particular was so tardy that M’PHERSON earnestly urged him to pay up. Knowing that he was in the habit of taking hides from the tanners, the Indian inquired if he would take hides for the debt. Wing answered in the affirmative, he promised to bring them in about four days. The Indian, knowing that M’PHERSON had at this time a flock of cattle ranging in the forest, went in pursuit, shot several, from which he took off the hides, and delivered them punctually according to promise.

 

Love of Whiskey—While we were encamped, waiting for the Indians to finish their ceremonies prior to emigration, we were much annoyed by an unprincipled band of whites who came to trade, particularly in the article of whiskey, which they secreted from us in the woods. The Indians all knew of this depot, and were continually going, like bees from the hive, day and night, and it was difficult to tell whether some who led in the worship passed most of the time in that employment or in drinking whiskey. While this state of things lasted, the officers could do nothing satisfactorily with them, nor were they sensible of the consequence of continuing in such a course. The government was bound by treaty stipulations to maintain them one year only, which was passing away, and winter was fast approaching, when they could not well travel, and if they could not arrive until spring, they would be unable to raise a crop, and consequently would be out of bread. We finally assembled the chiefs and other influential men, and presenting these facts vividly before them, they became alarmed and promised to reform. We then authorized them to tomahawk every barrel keg, jug, or bottle of whiskey that they could find, under the promise to hay for all and protect them from harm in so doing. They all agreed to this, and went to work that night to accomplish the task. Having lain down at a late hour to sleep, I was awakened by one who said he had found and brought me a jug of whiskey: I handed him a quarter of a dollar, set the whiskey down, and fell asleep again. The same follow then came, stole jug and all, and sold the contents that night to the Indians at “a shilling a dram—a pretty good speculation on a half gallon of whisk ,as the Indians call it. I suspected him of the trick, but he would not confess it until I was about to part with them at the end of the journey, when he came to me and related the cir-

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cumstances, saying that it was too good a story to keep. One of our interpreters, who was part Indian and had lived with them a long time, related the following tragical occurrence. A company of Shawnees met some time prevous to my coming among them, had a drunken frolic and quarrelled. One vicious fellow who had an old grudge against several of the others, and stabbed two of the company successively until they fell dead, was making for the third, when his arm was arrested by a large athletic Indian, who, snatching the knife from him, plunged it into him until he fell. He attempted to rise and got on his knees, when the other straddled him, seized him by the hair, lifted up his head with one hand, while with the other he drew his knife across his throat, exclaiming— “lie there, my friend! I guess you not eat any more hominy.”

 

Religious Ceremonies.—After we had rendezvoused, preparatory to moving, we were detained several weeks waiting until they had got over their tedious round of religious ceremonies, some of which were public and others kept private from us. One of their first acts was to take away the fencing from the graves of their fathers, level them to the surrounding surface, and cover them so neatly with green sod, that not a trace of the graves could be seen. Subsequently, a few of the chiefs and others visited their friends at a distance, gave and received presents from chiefs of other nations, at their headquarters.

 

Among the ceremonies above alluded to was a dance, in which none participated but the warriors. They threw off all their clothing but their breechclouts, painted their faces and naked bodies in a fantastical manner, covering them with the pictures of snakes and disagreeable insects and animals, and then, armed with war clubs, commenced dancing, yelling and frightfully distorting their countenances: the scene was truly terrific. This was followed by the dance they usually have on returning from a victorious battle, in which both sexes participated. It was a pleasing contrast to the other, and was performed in the night, in a ring, around a large fire. In this they sang and marched, males and females promiscuously, in single file, around the blaze. The leader of the band commenced singing, while all the rest were silent until he had sung a certain number of words, then the next in the row commenced with the same, and the leader began, with a new set, and so on to the end of their chanting. All were sin singing at once, but no two the same words. Twas told that part of the words they used were hallelujah! It was pleasing to witness the native modesty and graceful movements of those young females in this dance.

 

When their ceremonies were over, they informed us they were now ready to leave. They then mounted their horses, and such as went in wagons seated themselves, and set out with their “high priest” in front, bearing on his shoulders “the ark of the covenant,” which consisted of a large gourd and the bones of a deer’s leg tied to its neck. Just previous to starting, the priest gave a blast of his trumpet, then moved slowly and solemnly while the others followed in like manner, until they were ordered to halt in the evening and cook supper. The same course was observed through the whole of the journey. When they arrived near St. Louis, they lost some of their number by cholera. The Shawnees who emigrated numbered about 700 souls, and the Senecas about 350. Among them was also a detachment of Ottawas who were conducted by Capt. HOLLISTER from the Maunice country.

 

The principal speaker among the Shawnees at the period of their removal was WIWELIPEA. He was an eloquent orator—either grave or gay, humorous or severe, as the occasion required. At times his manner was so fascinating, his countenance so full of varied expression, and his voice so musical, that surveyors and other strangers passing through the country listened to him with delight, although the words fell upon their ears in an unknown language. He removed out west with his tribe. The chief CATAHECASSA, or BLACK HOOF, died at Wapakoneta, shortly previous to their removal, at the age of 110 years. The sketches annexed of BLACK HOOF and BLUE JACKET are derived from Drake’s “Tecumseh.”

 

The Chief Black Hoof.—Among celebrated chiefs of the Shawanoes, BLACK HOOF is entitled to a high rank. He was born in Florida, and at the period of the removal of a portion of that tribe to Ohio and Pennsylvania was old enough to recollect having bathed in the saltwater. He was present, with others of his tribe, at the defeat of Braddock, near Pittsburg, in 1755, and was engaged in all the wars m Ohio from that time until the treaty of Greenville, in 1795. Such was the sagacity of BLACK HOOF in planning his military expeditions, and such the energy with which he executed them, that he won the confidence of his whole nation, and was never at a loss for braves to fight under his banner. He was known far and wide as the great Shawanoe warrior, whose cunning, sagacity, and experience were only equalled by the fierce and desperate bravery with which he carried into operation his military plans. Like the other Shawanoe chiefs, he was the inveterate foe of the white man, and held that no peace should be made nor any negotiation attempted except on the condition that the whites should repass the mountains, and leave the

 

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great plains of the west to the sole occupancy of the native tribes.

 

He was the orator of his tribe during the greater part of his long life, and was an excellent speaker. The venerable Colonel JOHNSON, of Piqua, to whom we are indebted for much valuable information, describes him as the most graceful Indian he had ever seen, and as possessing the most natural and happy faculty of expressing his ideas. He was well versed in the traditions of his people; no one understood better their peculiar relations to the whites, whose settlements were gradually encroaching on them, or could detail with more minuteness the wrongs with which his nation was afflicted. But although a stern and uncompromising opposition to the whites had marked his policy through a series of forty years, and nerved his arm in a hundred battles, he became at length convinced of the madness of an ineffectual struggle against a vastly superior and hourly increasing foe. No sooner had he satisfied himself of this truth, than he acted upon it with the decision which formed a prominent trait in his character.

 

The temporary success of the Indians in several engagements previous to the campaign of General WAYNE had kept alive their expiring hopes; but their signal defeat by that gallant officer convinced the more reflecting of their leaders of the desperate character of the conflict. BLACK HOOF was among those who decided upon making terms with the victorious American commander; and having signed the treaty of 1795, at Greenville, he continued faithful to his stipulations during the remainder of his life. From that day, he ceased to be the enemy of the white man; and as he was not one who could act a negative part, he became the firm ally and friend of those against whom his tomahawk had been so long raised in vindictive animosity. He was their friend, not from sympathy or conviction, but in obedience to a necessity which left no middle course, and under a belief that submission alone could save his tribe from destruction; and having adopted this policy, his sagacity and sense of honor alike forbade a recurrence either to open war or secret hostility. He was the principal chief of the Shawanoe nation, and possessed all the influence and authority which are usually attached to that office, at the period when TECUMSEH and his brother the PROPHET commenced their hostile operations against the United States.

 

When TECUMSEH and the PROPHET embarked in their scheme for the recovery of the lands as far south as the Ohio river, it became their interest as well as policy to enlist BLACK HOOF in the enterprise; and every effort which the genius of the one, and the cunning of the other, could devise, was brought to bear upon him. But BLACK HOOF continued faithful to the treaty which he had signed at Greenville, in 1795, and by prudence and influence kept the greater part of his tribe from joining the standard of TECUMSEH or engaging on the side of the British in the late war with England. In that contest he became the ally of the United States, and although he took no active part in it, he exerted a very salutary influence over his tribe. In January, 1813, he visited Gen. TUPPER’S camp, at Fort McArthur, and while there, about ten o’clock one night, when sitting by the fire in company with the General and several other officers, some one fired a pistol through a hole in the wall of the but, and shot BLACK HOOF in the face: the ball entered the cheek, glanced against the bone, and finally lodged in his neck: he fell, and for some time was supposed to be dead, but revived, and afterwards recovered from this severe wound. The most prompt and diligent inquiry as to the author of this cruel and dastardly act failed to lead to his detection. No doubt was entertained that this attempt at assassination was made by a white man, stimulated perhaps by no better excuse than the memory of some actual or ideal wrong, inflicted on some of his own race by an unknown hand of kindred color with that of his intended victim.

 

BLACK HOOF was opposed to polygamy, and to the practice of burning prisoners. He is reported to have lived forty years with one wife, and to have reared a numerous family of children, who both loved and esteemed him. His disposition was cheerful, and his conversation sprightly and agreeable. In stature he was small, being not more than five feet eight inches in height. He was favored with good health, and unimpaired eyesight to the period of his death.

 

Blue Jacket or Weyapiersenwah—the campaign of General HARMER, in the year 1790, Blue Jacket was associated with the Miami chief, Little Turtle, in the command of the Indians. In the battle of the 20th of August, 1794, when the combined army of he Indians was defeated by General Wayne, BLUE JACKET had the chief control. The night previous to the battle, while the Indians were posted at Presque Isle, a council was held, composed of chiefs from the Miamis, Pottawatomies, Delawares, Shawanoes, Chippewas, Ottawas and Senecas—the seven nations engaged in the action. They decided against the proposition to attack General WAYNE at right in his encampment. The expediency of meeting him the next day then came up or consideration. LITTLE TURTLE was opposed so this measure, but being warmly supported by BLUE JACKET, it was finally agreed upon. The former was strongly inclined to peace, and decidedly opposed to risking a battle under the circumstances in which the Indians were then placed. “We have beaten the enemy,” said he, “twice, under separate commanders. We cannot expect the same good fortune always to attend us. The Americans are now led by a chief who never sleeps. The night and the day are alike to him; and, during all the time that he has been marching upon our villages, notwithstanding the watchfulness of our young men, we have never been able to surprise him. Think well of it. There is something whispers

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me, it would be prudent to listen to his offers of peace.” The counsels of BLUE JACKET, however, prevailed over the better judgment of LITTLE TURTLE. The battle was fought and the Indians defeated.

 

In the month of October following this defeat, BLUE JACKET concurred in the expediency of suing for peace, and at the head of a deputation of” chiefs, was about to bear a flag to General Wayne, then at Greenville, when the mission was arrested by foreign influence. Governor SIMCOE, Colonel McKEE and the Mohawk chief, Captain John BRANT, having in charge one hundred and fifty Mohawks and Messasagoes, arrived at the rapids of the Maumee, and invited the chiefs of the combined army to meet them at the mouth of the Detroit river, on the 10th of October. To this BLUE JACKET assented for the purpose of hearing what the British officers had to propose. Governor SIMCOE urged the Indians to retain their hostile

attitude towards the United States. In referring to the encroachments of the people of this country on the Indian lands, he said, “Children: I am still of the opinion that the Ohio is your right and title have given orders to the commandant of Fort Miami to fire on the Americans whenever they make their appearance again. I will go down to Quebec, and lay your grievances before the great man. From thence they will be forwarded to the king your father. Next spring, you will know the result of everything what you and I will do. “He urged the Indians to obtain a cessation of hostilities, until the following spring, when the English would be ready to attack the Americans, and by driving them back across the Ohio, restore their lands to the Indians. These counsels delayed the conclusion of peace until the following summer. BLUE JACKET was present at the treaty of Greenville, in 1795, and conducted himself with moderation and dignity.

 

THE FRIENDS AT WAPAKONETA.

Early in this century the Society of Friends established a mission among the Shawnees at Wapakoneta; this was interrupted by the war of 1812. At a very great expense they erected a grist-mill and saw-mill on the Auglaize; also a residence for Isaac HARVEY, the superintendent, and his family. Under his instruction the Indians acquired considerable proficiency in agriculture, the product being corn, pumpkins and beans. They made rapid progress in civilization and the acquisition of property.

 

Domestic animals were introduced and the horse was brought into use to relieve the women the labor of ploughing and carrying their burdens. While willing to be educated in agriculture, they were for years averse to having their children taught by the whites. Eventually this overcome, their young people made rapid progress in study.

 

During the summer the men left their women to raise the crops and idled their time; in winter they engaged in hunting, but such was their scrupulous honesty that if one found the animal of another in his trap he removed the game, suspended it near by, and reset it. The missionary HARVEY greatly ingratiated himself with the Indians. In the early part of his mission there was living among them a Polly BUTLER, a half-breed, being the daughter by a Shawnee woman of General Richard BUTLER, an Indian trader before the American Revolution, and who was second in command at St. Clair’s defeat and among those killed.

 

She was accused of bewitching one of the tribe, and at night fled to the house of HARVEY for protection, saying in broken English, “They kill-ee me ! they kill-ee me! ‘she brought with her a. little child. A small dog which followed Harvey was killed, lest his noise should betray her hiding-place. TENENSKWATAWA, the PROPHET, brother of TECUMSEH, was at this time living in the village, and was exorcising a sick man for witchcraft. HARVEY, who had visited him, carrying food and nourishment, found him at one time lying on his face, his back bare and his whole body so lacerated that he was in danger of death from loss of blood. The PROPHET was present, and being asked by HARVEY why .this brutal treatment, he replied that the incisions were made to extract the combustible matter which the witch had deposited. The good Quaker drove the PROPHET out of the house and dressed the sick man’s wounds. The Indians came next day to HAWLEY’S house in search of the fugitive; she was secreted between two beds, and they failed to discover her. Later came the chief WEASECAH or CAPTIAN WOLF.  He was a friend of HARVEY. The result of the interview was that Harvey went with WEASECAH to the Council House. The Indians were dressed some of them in war paint, while WEASECAH made a brief address to them; but it was of no avail. Then HARVEY through the interpreter told them with great composure that he had come with WEASECAH to intercede for the woman; but seeing that they had resolved to follow their own course, he had prepared to offer himself in her stead; that he had no weapons and was at their mercy;

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they might do with him as they thought best. At this the noble chief WEASECAH took hold of HARVEY’s arm and said: “Me Qua-ke-lee friend.” He begged the chiefs not to suffer their friend the Quaker to be harmed, but they were still determined not to submit to the proposition. He offered his life instead of his friend’s. This heroic attitude of the Quaker, with the loyal and brave act of the noble chief checked the tide of hostile feeling, and for a minute all were in suspense. Then chief after chief, to the number of six or eight, stepped up to HARVEY, each offering his hand, and saying, “Me Qua-ka-lee friend.” WEASECAH then argued with then eloquently, and at last the whole council offered their hands in friendship, TENSKWATAWA, the PROPHET, only excepted, who sullenly left the council house in defeat. It was hard for HARVEY and WEASECAH to prevail on the poor woman to leave her place of concealment She remained in the Quaker’s house for several days, and then returned to her people and lived in peace.

 

This was the first successful effort to arrest the monstrous practice of destroying life on charges of witchcraft among these Indians. The Indians were only a little later than the whites in these matters. Thousands were put to death in Germany alone, in the century Columbus discovered America, on charges of witchcraft.

 

In 1830 the mission schools came under the charge of Mr. Henry HARVEY, and when the Indians were removed to Kansas the Friends” mission schools were taken with then under his charge and that of his family.

In 1842 Mr. HARVEY returned to the East. When about to leave, the Indians bade them an affectionate farewell. One of their number whose English name was George WILLIAMS was appointed to extend the farewell of the whole tribe, and in doing so he spoke as follows: “Mr. brother and sister, I am about to speak for all our young men and for all our women and children, and in their name bid you farewell. They could not all come, and it would be too much trouble for you to have them all here at once, so I have been sent with their message. I was directed to tell you that their hearts are full of sorrow, because you are going to leave them and return to your home. Ever since you have lived with us we can all see how the Quakers and our fathers lived in peace.

 

“You have treated our children well, and your doors have always been open to us. When we were in distress you relieved us; and when our people were hungry you gave them food. For your kindness we love you. Your children and our children lived together in peace, and at school learned together and loved one another. We will always remember you, and teach our children to never forget your children. And now, my brothers and sisters, I bid you farewell and Caleb and his sisters, and the little boys and their sisters farewell!” He then took Mr. HARVEY by the hand, saying, “Farewell, my brother,” and then taking the hand of Mrs. HARVEY said: “Farewell, my good sister.” He then bade the children an individual farewell and went away in sadness.

St. Mary’s, eighty miles northwest of Columbus, lies within the oil and gas belt, In June, 1887, its daily production of gas from six wells was 25,000,000 cubic feet. Its daily production of oil is also quite large. St. Mary’s is on the line of the Erie and Miami Canal, and on the L. E. & W. R. R., at the junction of the Minster branch.

 

The town is on elevated ground, 398 feet above Lake Erie. A large canal basin is in the place and abundance of water-power is afforded by the Mercer County Reservoir. The town is supplied with light and fuel from natural gas owned by the corporation,

 

Newspapers: Argus, Democrat, D. A. CLARK, editor; Sentinel, Independent, V. J. WALKUP, editor. Churches: 1 Presbyterian, l Methodist, l Baptist, l German Protestant, 1 German Lutheran, 1 Catholic. Bank of St. Mary’s, F. DICKER, cashier.

 

Manufactures and Employees.—R. B. Gordon, flour, etc.; C. Buehler, job machinery, 14 hands; L. Bimel & Son, carriages, etc., 90; John Ladue, oars and handles, 20; St. Mary’s Woolen Manufacturing Company, woolen blankets, etc., 141; Nietert & Koop, flour, etc.—State Report.

 

Population in 1880, 1,745; school census in 1886, 761; C. F. WHEATON, superintendent.

 

St. Mary’s was from early times a noted point, being a village of the Shawnees. Gen. Wayne on his campaign camped here and called the place “Girty’s town,” from James GIRTY, a brother of Simon, who lived here with the Indians and gave his name to the place; Harmar was also here prior to Wayne. In the war of 1812 there was a fort at St. Mary’s, which for a time was the headquarters of Gen. Harrison. It was called Fort Barbee by the regiment of Col. BARBEE which built it. Another fort was also built by Col. POGUE at the

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Ottawa towns on the Auglaize, twelve miles from St. Mary’s, which he named, from his wife, Fort Amanda. The regiment of Col. JENNINGS completed the fort, which his troops named Fort Jennings.

 

There were four GIRTY brothers, Thomas, George, James and Simon. James was adopted by the Shawnees; George by the Delawares, and Simon by the Senecas. James was the worst renegade of them all and took delight in inflicting the most fiendish cruelties upon prisoners, sparing neither women nor children. Simon was the most conspicuous, being a leader and counsellor among the Indians. It was while at St. Mary’s that General HARRISON received his commission of major-general. The old Fort Barbee stood in the southeast corner of the Lutheran cemetery.

 

St. Mary’s will long be memorable as the last home and final resting-place of that old hero AUGUST WILLICH. On his monument here is this extraordinary record:” Born Nov. 19, 1810, in Braunsberg, Prussia; died Jan. 22, 1878, at St. Mary’s, Ohio. Commanding army of the Revolution in Germany, 1849; private 9th Regt. O. V. I.; Colonel 32d Regt. Ind. Vol. Inf.; Brig.-Gen. U. S. Vol., July, 1862; Brevet Maj.-Gen. U. S. Vol., Oct. 21, 1865.”

 

A friend in St. Mary’s who loved him as a brother thus outlines for these pages the story of his heroic and noble life.

 

General August WILLICH was born in Braunsberg, Prussia, Nov. 19, 1810. When twelve years of age he was appointed a cadet at the military school in Potsdam, and three years later he entered the military academy in Berlin, whence in 1828 he was commissioned a lieutenant and assigned to the artillery.

 

GEN. AUGUST WILLICH.                              WILLICH’S MONUMENT.

 

 


Democratic sentiments were prevalent amongst the officers of this corps and many were transferred to other commands. WILLICH, then a captain, was sent to Fort Kolberg in 1846; he resigned his commission, which a year later was accepted. Thereafter he became a conspicuous leader of the revolutionary and working classes, assuming the trade and garb of a carpenter.

 

In March, 1848, he commanded the popular assault and capture of the Town Hall in Cologne; a mouth later the Republic was declared in Baden, and WILLICH was tendered the command of all the revolutionary forces; on April 20, 1848,

 

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this force was attacked by an overwhelming force of the government troops, defeating and scattering them. WILLICH, with over a thousand of his followers, sought and found refuge in the young and hospitable Republic of France.

 

The next year, 1849, WILLICH again crossed the boundary and besieged the Fortress of Landau, until it was relieved by an army under the Prince of Prussia, Dow Emperor of Germany. After several other exploits, all revolutionary forces were defeated, and on July 11th the last column under WILLICH crossed the border to Switzerland.

 

Crossing France on his way to England, WILLICH was arrested in Lyons by order of the then president, Louis Napoleon, to be surrendered to Prussia, but released in consequence of public demonstrations in his favor.

 

In 1853 he came to the United States, and found employment on the coast survey from Hilton Head to South Carolina, tinder Captain MOFFITT, later commander of the rebel cruiser “Florida.” In 1858 he was called to Cincinnati to assume the editorial chair of the German Republican, the organ of the workingmen.

 

On the breaking out of the war he joined the 9th Regt. O. V. I. and as private, adjutant and major organized and drilled it. After the battle of Rich Mountain he was commissioned a colonel by Governor Morton of Indiana, and organized the 32d Regt. Ind. V. I., with which he entered the field and participated in the battle at Mumfordsville, Ky., Dec. 16, 1861. A few days later occurred the brilliant fight of the regiment with the Texas Rangers at Green river, under Col. Terry, who was killed, and totally routed.

 

General WILLICH’S history thereafter is part of the history of the Army of the Cumberland. His memorable exploit at Shiloh was followed by a commission as brigadier-general. At Stone River, by the unfortunate fall of his horse, he was taken prisoner. At the battle of Chickamauga he held the right of Thomas’ line, and with his brigade covered the rear of our forces on its retreat to Rossville. At Missionary Ridge his brigade was among the first to storm the rebel works, resulting in the rout of the enemy. His career in the Atlanta campaign was cut short by serious wound in the shoulder, received at Resaca, Ga.

 

He was then placed in command of the post at Cincinnati until March, 1865, when he assumed command of his brigade and accompanied it to Texas, until its return and his muster-out as brevet major-general.

 

In 1867 he was elected auditor of Hamilton county; after the expiration of his term in 1869 he revisited Germany, and again took up the studies of his youth, philosophy, at the University of Berlin. His request to enter the army in the French-German war of 1870 was not granted, and he returned to his adopted country, making his home in St. Mary’s, Ohio, with his old friend, Major Charles HIPP, and many other pleasant and congenial friends.

 

In those few years he was a prominent figure in all social circles, hailed by every child in town, and died Jan. 23, 1878, from paralysis of the heart, followed to his grave in the beautiful Elmwood Cemetery by three companies of State militia, delegations from the 9th Ohio and 32d Ind. Vols., the children of the schools, and a vast concourse of sorrowing friends.

 

In his “Ohio in the War” Whitelaw REID gives WILLICH extraordinary commendation He says:

 

In the opening of Rosecrans’ campaign against Bragg in 1863 General WILLICH took Liberty Gap with his brigade, supported by two regiments from another command. Rosecrans characterizes this as the finest fighting he witnessed in the war. The maneuvering of the brigade was by bugle signals, and the precision of the movements was equal to a parade.

 

His services at Chickamauga under the direction of Thomas were gallant in the extreme He was finally left to cover the retreat and maintained his position until the whole army arrived safely at Chattanooga. But it was at the battle of Mission,

 

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305 Ridge especially that his military career was crowned with one of the grandest feats of the war. Says Reid:

In the action on the third day, when Sherman had made his unsuccessful charges and Grant gave his well-known order for the centre to take the enemy’s works at the foot of the Ridge and stay there, WILLICH’S and Hazen’s brigades were in the front with Sheridan’s and other divisions in echelon to the rear. The whole line moved in double-quick through woods and fields and carried the works WILLICH’S brigade going up under the concentrated fire of batteries at a point where two roads met.

 

At this point General WILLICH said that he saw to obey General Grant’s order and remain in the works at the foot of the Ridge would be the destruction of the centre. To fall back would have been the loss of the battle with the sacrifice of Sherman. In this emergency, with no time for consultation with the division general, or any other commander, he sent three of his aides to different regiments and rode himself to the Eighth Kansas and gave the order to storm the top of the Ridge. How brilliantly the order was executed the whole world knows.

 

NEW BREMEN, formerly called Bremen, seventy-eight miles northwest of Columbus, on the L. E. & W. R. R. It was first settled in 1832 by a company organized at Cincinnati for the purpose of locating a town to be colonized by Germans. A committee, consisting of F. H. SCHROEDER and A. F. WINDELER, viewed the country north of Cincinnati and selected the present site. The company consisted of thirty-three members, among whom were Christian CARMAN, J. B. MESLOH, F. STEINER, F. NEITER and Philip REIS.

 

They purchased ten acres of land from the government at one dollar per acre. The land was surveyed by R.GRANT into 102 lots, each 66 by 300 feet. Each member was entitled to one lot, the remainder being offered for sale at $25 each. The plot was recorded in Mercer county June 11, 1833, immediately after which WINDELER returned to Cincinnati, while SCHROEDER remained for the purpose of erecting a hut for the reception of the six members who came with WINDELER from Cincinnati, a journey occupying fourteen days. The first hut was built of logs twelve by fourteen feet in dimension, and required to raise it the assistance of all the settlers within a radius of six miles. The latest survivors of the first colony were DICKMAN and MOHRMAN who died several years since.

 

In those days the nearest supply station was twenty-three miles, and an instance is recorded of one Mr. GRAVER, making on foot a trip to Piqua, returning the same day carrying on his shoulder a No. 7 plow which he had procured there.

 

The first families were all Protestants; their first minister, Rev. L. H. MEYER. A building was erected (1883) at a cost of $40, which answered the purpose of both school and church. In 1$35 Mr. Charles BOESEL settled here; he was the pioneer business man of New Bremen, who established its first bank. He died April 17, 1885, aged 71 years, leaving many permanent monuments to mark the events of a progressive, generous and useful life. He was one of the most prominent Germans of Northern Ohio, occupying many high official positions of trust and responsibility. In 1835 many of the settlers went to Indiana and worked on the Wabash canal, while the women managed the home farms. During the same year a post-office was established and the name changed to New Bremen.

 

The Miami canal being under construction in 1838 enhanced the industry and growth of the town, the completion of which formed the first shipping outlet; and in 1840 a warehouse (Mr. WIEMEYER’S) and water mill were established.

 

In 1849 the town was scourged by cholera and 150 died out of a population of 700. Since then it has grown with steady prosperity and now has:

 

Newspapers: Sun, C. M. SMITH, editor and publisher; Star of Western Ohio, Democrat, Theodore PURPOS, editor. Churches: 3 Lutheran and 1 Catholic. Bank: Boesel Bros & Co., Jacob BOESEL, president; Julius BOESEL, cashier.

 

Manufactures and Employees.—W. Rabe, sash, doors, blinds, etc., 12 hands; Knast & Heinepeld, carriages, etc.; Bakhaus & Kuenzel, flour and feed; Bakhaus & Kuenzel, woollen blankets, etc., 18; New Bremen Machine Co., drain tile

 

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machines, 14; also New Bremen Oil & Gas Co., pork packing, etc.-State Report 1886.

 

Population in 1880, 1,160. School census in 1886, 848; Chas. W. WILLIAMSON, superintendent.

 

MINSTER, seventy-five miles west of Columbus, on a branch of the L. E. & W. R. R., is surrounded by a fine farming district. Churches: 1 Catholic.

 

Manufactures and Employees.The Metropolitan Mills, flour and feed, l1 hands; Minster Woollen Mills, woollen blankets, etc., 26; F. Herkhoff & Bro., staves and cooperage, 40; Fred. Weimann, sawing lumber, 7; Steinman Bros., lager beer; also 2 boot and shoe factories.—State Report 1886.

 

Population in 1880, 1,123. School census in 1886, 603.

 

It was founded in 1833 like New Bremen by a stock association of Cincinnati Germans; they were Catholics. It was laid out by Francis Joseph STALLO of Mercer county as their agent, who named it Stallostown; the place still preserves its German nationality, and has one of the largest breweries in this region, founded by Frank Lang in 1870. The Catholic church is one of the finest in the State, and that religion prevails exclusively.




Additional Reading


The History of western Ohio and Auglaize County


History of Auglaize County, Ohio : with the Indian history of Wapakoneta, and the first settlement of the county



 

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