Abbildungen der Seite

and in the vicinity of the spot where the said mated at 55,000 cubic yards, at 40 cents per loan was proposed to be expended -- not, how- yard, amounting to the sum of $22,000. This ever, for the full amount thereof, but limited to proposition was rejected, two members of the $10,000, as appears by the record on the 22d of board dissenting. One of them, the acting October following. The powers given to the commissioner, believing that it would bave agent seem to have been broad, for, in the been more judicious to let the work by conwords of the resolution “ The common council tract, resigned bis appointment. The board

all the powers and authority invested in them supervision, appointing another acting com(the council) by the charter of the city and the missioner, and placing in his hands the sum of amendments thereto, so far as relates to the $5,000 to expend on the same. A proposal negotiation of said loan.” Thus it will appear was submitted at this time by the River Raisin that while it was necessary under the law to Bank and Merchants and Mechanics' Bank for obtain a vote of the people for a loan of the use of the funds, $15,000, to be put to the $25,000, the council by their subsequent ap- credit of the former, and $10,000 to that of the proval of this arrangement, seem to have vir- latter, they to pay the agent of the city for his tually contracted a debt of a much larger sum; services in negotiating said loan, but not to pay for the stock of said Trust Company has been, any interest. This proposition seems to have at times, of scarce any value, and at the present been accepted. The committee can see no

par. Had the loss of this stock fallen on the from the bank at Albany and deposited in the city, as it might have done, if it was liable, banks here, as by the report of the agent the certainly to the extent of $10,000 if not to the city was to have been allowed interest at the whole sum, it would bave rendered the evils of rate of two per cent. by the bank at Albany. our situation much greater, and ought to serve Eastern drafts at that time were at an unas a caution in future to reject altogether any usually high rate of premium, the profit of proposition to involve the city in debt. A wbich was thus given to those banks. A sum compromise was made, and the city was finally in all probability equal to $2,000, if not much relieved from these demands by relinquishing more, was thus relinquished for their benefit. their claim upon the bank at Albany for How much they paid the agent for his services $2,000 of the loan which had been with held by does not appear. The banks did agree by them on that account. It is proper here to their proposals to pay out on the works the state that it was claimed by the agent who bills of specie-paying banks. How far this was negotiated the loan, tbat the city was not to be complied with the committee are unable to held accountable for the loss or depreciation on say; but it is reasonable to suppose that they the stock before referred to. But subsequent availed themselves of every opportunity to pay proceedings go to show that other parties to out their own notes instead thereof, the differthe contract thought differently, and the final ence being very great, as there was at this action appears to confirm it. The committee time a general suspension of specie payments, are, however, of the opinion that the proceed- and but one or two banks in the State continings were illegal from first to last.

. ued to redeem their notes. On or about the 27th of October, 1838, the Up to the 13th of August, 1839, the board commissioners of the canal fund were informed had expended in all upon the work the sum of that the money was subject to their draft, and $19,611.40, when it was entirely arrested in its the work was commenced. The treasurer's further progress by the failure of the Meraccounts on the 4th of November, 1838, show chants and Mechanics' Bank, and soon after by a credit of $23,000, drawn from the bank at the River Raisin Bank. In the former at the Albany or transferred to the credit of the Bank time of its failure there remained the sum of of River Raisin and the Merchants and Me- $2,633.45, and in the latter the sum of $755.12. chanics' Bankof Monroe. At a meeting of the The Bank of Albany had also at this time recommissioners on the 4th of November, 1838, fused to pay the balance of the loan, being proposals were made by Luther Harvey and $2,000 before alluded to, alleging that the stock others to take the contract for the work, esti- of the Trust Company bad depreciated, and


claiming the difference of the city. Thus it An examination of the foregoing items will will be seen that more than one-fifth of the present the following result: A loan in the loan was at a critical time rendered unavail. hands of the commissioners of the canal fund, able to the prosecution of the work, causing of $25,000, disposed of as follows: by its interruption great injury, no doubt, to

Official services, counsel fees, printthat wbich had been done. On the 7th of Fing, etc.

----------$2,406 75 April, 1840, the board presented a report of Interest on loan ..---

------ 875 00

Pork and other provisions -------- 4,882 45 their doings, and claimed to have finished

Blankets, dry goods, etc. ---------- 534 70 45,000 cubic yards out of 55,000 as estimated Material, lumber, etc. ------------ 2,915 87

Labor -

7,997 63 for the whole work, and say “but for the stop.

Deposited in broken banks and page of the banks the loan would have been withheld on pretense of claims 5,388 60 more than sufficient to finish the entire work.”

$25,000 About $5,000, say they, would be more than Thus it appears that out of the large sum of sufficient to finish the ontire work. Yet that $25,000 only $7,997.63 was paid out in money sum has been expended with $14,000 more by for labor, $2,882.75 for material, etc., $5,417.15 subsequent taxation, and still it is not entirely for pork, provisions, blankets, etc., leaving finished.

about $2,400 consumed chiefly in salaries in a We present below an abstract of the amount period of time but little over nine months. expended up to this period, and invite the at. Among the items of provisions we observe an tention of our fellow-citizens to the fact that so extraordinary disbursement for pork. We can small a proportion appears to have been paid conceive of no just excuse for such an approout for actual labor on the work. It is a fact priation of the funds of the city. Was it a that is to be taken into consideration when we speculation entered into in its behalf? This are asked to vote for this or that appropriation

cannot be supposed, for we find no authority and it is desirable to know how much of any for such an operation. It might have been sum is necessarily absorbed in preliminary considered a safe investment, and perhaps proceedings, or consumed in injudicious man- proved better than a deposit in the banks; yet agement of public affairs.

it was an inconvenient sort of currency. It Abstract of amounts expended out of Canal Fund to date, would not have been necessary for the proseAugust 13, 1849.

cution of the work, as at all times money has Interest for six months on loan.

$ 875 00 been much more available for labor than any Traveling expenses of agent.---

200 25 Council fees ---

70 50

description of dicker. The accounts show that Printing--

47 00 some of it was sold to the merchants in town, Postage

15 75

and, as the committee believe, a portion of it Officers and superintendents.

2,049 62 Surveying ---

23 63

was ultimately lost.

After the failure of the banks, it would ap

$3,281 75 Pork, pork barrels and salt.----- $4,555 06

pear that nearly a year elapsed before anyDeduct pork sold--------------.

- 885 96

thing more was done on the work. On the 2d

3,669 10 Flour

of Norember, 1840, George W. Strong made clour ------------------------- $ 658 00 Beef

47 75

application to the board, and they concluded a Potatoes

71 18 Beans

48 75

contract with him to complete the canal on the Groceries --

387 67

following terms, viz. :

1,213 35 Blankets and dry goods -------$ 356 15

In personal property in hands of commis-

48 30

$770 90 Wood. ---- 130 25

640 88 In debts due them ---------- -----------534 70 Balance in River Raisin Bank ----

670 69 Hardware -----------

$ 351 49

Balance in Merchants and Mechanics' Bank 2,533 45 Blacksmithing --

238 08 Stationery 6 91

$4,615 92 Wheelbarrows...

226 25
8 00

to be paid to him upon the completion thereof Timber, lumber, etc. -------- 2.052 02

2,882 75

by drafts on said banks, which he was to take Labor

7,997 63 in payment whether paid by the banks or not. 32 12

This was a favorable contract for the city under $19,611 40 the circumstances, but if the means of the board




Boat ------------

-----------Sundries ------

[ocr errors]



had been in their own hands instead of insolv- The sum expended at Bar Point under the ent banks they could doubtless bave effected a direction of H. Disbrow consisted of the fol. much more favorable contract.

lowing items : On the 29th of August, 1843, the council

Superintending, &c------

$197 50 made another contract with Mr. Strong, associ Surveying

8 00 ated with Mr. Campbell, for the further pros

2 25 Timber, &c.------

10 02 ecution of the work or completion thereof, for Rope, tools, &c.--------

168 76 the sum of $7,250, to be paid $500 in advance, vance Repairs of dredge.--.

15 30 Board --

22 00 $5,000 as the work progressed, and $1,750 out Labor on work--------

1,381 11 of a tax to be collected thereafter. This con

$1,804 94 tract was based upon the expectation of a vote of the freeholders authorizing another loan of When the settlement of this and the preced$10.000. The same was obtained on the 11th ing contract of the city with Campbell & Strony of October following; but instead of a loan an took place, they were to have been paid the issue was made of bonds, which were in fact balance due them by agreement, in leases and paid out upon the contract. There was a form canal bonds to the amount of $1,438.06. of borrowing and lending, yet there was no Instead thereof they received in money passing. Of this loan of $10,000, levied canal bonds.---

$400 00 Leases --

266 23 and collected by special tax upon the people in City orders ------

771 83 the year 1843, to pay the bonds last above re

--- $1,438 06

Also, the further sum allowed ferred to, the following is the disposition :

them for interest on their ac-

143 30 Interest on first loan .--.

$ 795 69 Printing

318 84 And it here will be noted that a sum that Stationery --

15 41 Salaries and other services.

1,342 66 should and only could be legally raised by a Redemption of bonds.

12 50 vote of the people, is taken out of the general

$2,485 10 fund and thus collected from personal propCampbell & Strong, on contract ------------ 4,870 00 erty, which is not holden under the law for Excavator purchased of Campbell & Strong 1,000 00 Expended at Bar Point under direction of

any part of such expenditures. Mr. Disbrow --- --

---------- 1,804 94 Another loan, or rather tax, is roted by the $10,160 04 Wmng people on the

willing people on the 17th of March, 1848, of

$4,000, and a contract immediately made with The surplus was probably out of city funds.

H. W. Campbell for the completion of the By the preceding statement it will be seen that

work again for $4,000. An additional allowout of said tax of $10,000, there was paid to

ance was subsequently made to him of $104.79 Campbell and Strong upon their contract only

y for discount on funds preriously paid to him, $4.870, leaving due to them, when it sbould be upon which he claims to have sustained a loss completed, the sum of $2,380, to be raised by

of ten per cent., but which the committee are another tax or paid out of other funds than

assured, a large part was used by him at the those provided for it. In addition to this,

par value thereof. The final payments of the Messrs. Campbell & Strong presented the fol

balance, amounting to $1,200, due to. Messrs. lowing account on the 18th of February, 18 15 :

Strong & Campbell and to H. W. Campbell on Extra work and hinderance by washing of

their several contracts, was paid only a few banks in consequence of running boats. $2,009 64

days ago (February 7, 1850), out of the taxes Lost time and damage in consequence of

collected for 1849. injunction .----

200 00.
Discount on funds received -----

---- 560 00
$2,991 96

This is a brief history of the amount loaned Of these items the council allowed $1,654.82. for canal purposes, or raised by direct tax upon These sums must have drawn heavily upon the inhabitants, for the prosecution of the work, subsequent appropriations for the canal, and the sereral contracts founded upon the same, finally, as we believe, upon the general taxes of and the manner in which the money has been the city.

disposed of.





TINDER the ordinance of 1787, the territory who protested positively against it. It was

northwest of the Ohio River was given a not long, however (1805), before the Territory temporary government under the name of the of Michigan was established, with its capital at Territory of the Northwest. It embraced Detroit. what now constitutes the States of Ohio, Michi. There were several questions growing out of gan, Indiana, Illinois and Wisconsin. In 1796, and connected with the organization of the the Northwest Territory was composed of five State of Ohio, which co-operated to cause miscounties, with names and boundaries as fol- understanding and unkind feelings between lows: Wayne - including the settlements on the people of what is now Ohio and those of the Maumee, Raisin and Detroit Rivers, with Michigan. In the first place, the general sentiits seat of justice at Dotroit; Washington — ment seems to have been that the movement comprising all that portion of the present State for the formation of a State Government was of Ohio within forty miles of the Ohio river premature and unwise. It was not the act of and between the Little Miami and Muskingum the territorial legislature or of the people, as in rivers, with Marietta for its county seat; Ham- other like cases, but solely that of Congress, ilton -- embracing the region between the Little not only without suggestion by the local and the Great Miami, and within forty miles authorities, but against their known will, and of the Ohio, with Cincinnati as the seat of upon the petition of a few individuals speaking justice; Knox-containing the country near only for themselves. As already suggested, to the Ohio and between the Great Miami and this state of things was then believed to be due

county seat; and St. Clair — embracing the State. Judge Burnet in his “ Notes on the settlements upon the Illinois and Kaskaskia Northwestern Territory” says that so strong Rivers, as well as those upon the Upper Mis- was the popular feeling against Jefferson and sissippi, the seat of justice being at Kaskaskia. for Mr. Adams in the bitter contest of 1800,

By the ordinance of 1787, it was provided, that there were in Hamilton county but four that when a State should be formed of the east- persons known to him as supporting the former, ern portion of the Territory, it would include to wit: Major David Zeigler, William Henry the territory “lying north of line drawn east Harrison (afterwards President), William Mcand west, through the southern extreme of Millan and John Smith. The feeling in Wayne Lake Michigan," which should remain a por- county, now Michigan, if anything, was even tion of such State until such territory should more decided in the same direction.

this provision, however, the enabling act of separation of Wayne county from Ohio in Congress (1802) providing for the organization 1802, are not found in the partisan divisions of of the State of Ohio, fixed the northern bound that day. They were developed in the quesary of the proposed State on the line above tion of boundary, which assumed grave magnimentioned, whereby what is now Michigan tude several years later. Of this, it will be was excluded from the proposed State and fitting here to make as brief a statement as attached to the Territory of Indiana, with its may be consistent with a proper understanding seat of government at Vincennes, a distant and of its merits: very inconvenient point. This was very un- 1. As already stated, by the ordinance of satisfactory to the inhabitants of that region, 1787, creating the Territory Northwest of the Ohio, the line provided for the northern between the River Raisin (Monroe) and Deboundary of the State to be formed of that ter- troit. Judge Burnet says" that line was maniritory (subsequently the State of Ohio) was festly intended by the committee and by Con"an cast and west line, drawn through the gress, to be the northern boundary of this southerly bend or extreme of Lake Michigan." State; and on the principles on which courts

2. By the enabling act of Congress, under of chancery construe contracts, accompanied which the State of Ohio was organized in 1802, by plats, that map and the line marked on it the northern boundary of the same was stated should have been taken as conclusive evidence as “an east and west line drawn through the of the boundary, without reference to the actual southerly extreme of Lake Michigan."

position of the southern extreme of the Lake.” 3. The State constitution, formed under said During the session of the Ohio convention, authority, declared the northern boundary of says the same authority, it was the common the State to be “an east and west line, drawn understanding that the maps in use were not through the southerly extreme of Lake Michi. correct, and that the line should terminate at gan, running east," "until it shall intersect some point on the strait, far above Maumee Lake Erie or the territorial line ;

Bay. But while the matter was under discus- Provided, That if the southerly bend or ex sion, a man who had hunted many years on treme of Lake Michigan should extend so far Lake Michigan, and thus was well acquainted south that a line drawn due east from it would with its position, bappened to be at Chillinot intersect Lake Erie, or if it should inter- cothe, and in conversation mentioned that the sect Lake Erie east of the mouth of the Miami of lake extended further south than was generally the Lake (the Maumee River), then and in that supposed; and that a map he had seen placed case, with the assent of Congress, the northern its southern bend many miles north of its true boundary of this State shall be established by, position. The effect of such statement was and extending to, a direct line running from serious apprehension on the subject, and led to the southern extremity of Lake Michigan to the change of line from that named in the enthe most northerly cape of the Miami (Maumee) abling act to the one set forth in the State Bay, after intersecting the due north line from constitution. the mouth of the Great Miami River."

It is said that this change at the time was As will be seen the question of boundary regarded as so serious a matter that some thus presented rested on what should prove to members of the convention hesitated to adopt be the eastern termination of a line drawn due it, lest it be rejected by Congress and the adeast from the extreme of Lake Michigan, the mission of the State into the Union thereby be uncertainty as to which seems to have been postponed. But it was finally adopted and recognized by the Ohio convention and care- subsequently approved by Congress, in the fully provided against in fixing the northern acceptance of the State with its boundary so line of the proposed State. In his “ Notes," fixed. Major B. F. Stickney says the man who Judge Jacob Burnet, a prominent and active gave the information at Chillicothe in regard member of that convention, and subsequently to Lake Michigan's real position, was named a United States Senator from Ohio, says it was Wells, and that he had been long a prisoner generally known to those who had consulted with the Indians in that region, and had thus the maps of the Western country extant at the become lamiliar with the facts. time the ordinance of 1787 was passed, that The declaration of war with England, which Lake Michigan was represented thereon as followed in June, postponed action in this matfar north of the position which it has since ter beyond the passage of a resolution by been ascertained to occupy. On a map in the Congress directing a survey of the boundary State Department, which was the guide of the line to be made. No steps to that end were committee of Congress who framed the ordi- taken until 1816-17, when Governor Cass in nance of 1787, the southern extreme of that behalf of Michigan, took measures to secure a lake was laid down as near the 420 degree of survey. The consent of the Indians, who yet north latitude; and there was a pencil line beld most of the country through which the passing through the southern bend of the lake line would pass, was obtained by Major B. F. to the Canada line, which intersected the strait Stickney, by request of Governor Cass, when

« ZurückWeiter »