Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

Bapt. Rousseau. Bapt. Druillard. taries, were by various Indian deeds conveyed Joseph Grenist. Phillip Bellanger. to some of the persons engaged in the plot,

These are the names as they appear of record. singly or together, from the foot of Lake There are doubtless some inaccuracies.

Huron to the Cuyaboga River, with some inTo understand the important bearing of the considerable exceptions. If those Indian titles conspiracy in a national point of view, it may could have been made good, those parties would be well to mention the condition in which its have an almost entire control of the country, success would have left the frontier. · Many of and the condition of the private claims would the names appended to the notice of election have left the holders of these too at their mercy. will be recognized in Detroit as land owners, With all these circumstances combining, it is not holding valuable private claims along the river. a wild conjecture to suppose that the possibility But with the exception of eight or ten, all these of getting back into British allegiance a counclaims had reverted to the government. The try controlled by British subjects may have lands not embraced in the narrow private been in the thoughts of the conspirators as an claims along the Detroit River, and its tribus incident if not an object of their action.

CHAPTER V.

EARLY SETTLEMENTS.

THE early adventurers in their advance from Our lake region of country was held by the

I the broad expanse of Lake Erie, up French Crown until 1763, when it was transthrough our beautiful river, saw all around ferred from France to Great Britain. This them a glorious scene of waters and forests, as was the period when the first beams of civilizayet untouched by the hand of civilization, and tion had scarcely penetrated its forests, and inhabited by savages as strange and wild as the paddle of the French fur-traders swept the their own wilderness. Herds of deer wandered lakes, and the boat songs of the traders awakthrough the forests and drank from the clear ened tribes as wild as the wolves which how led waters of the river, whose unruffled surface re- around their wigwams. flected their graceful forms. Fish of great Two Indian villages formerly occupied the value glided through the waters, flocks of water- place whereon now stands the city of Monroe, fowl traversed their course along the shores or viz.: those of the Ottawas and Pottawatomies, dipped in the current, and snow-white gulls and previous to that time the Erri-er-ro-nous skimmed its surface; beautiful woods of lofty lived upon the confines of the lake, from which trees extended as far as the eye could see, tribe, it is supposed, Lake Erie derived its around whose trunks were twined grapevines name. It was a peaceably disposed tribe, but of the largest size, whose luscious fruit hung in was finally exterminated by the fierce Irorich clusters gracefully from the boughs above, quois, who comprised the most powerful Inthe vast quantity of which growing along the dian league known to have existed on the conbanks gave to our river its name, originally tinent. called by the French River Aux Raisin; and The Iroquois league consisted of the Ononnow, over 100 years later, the name is very dagas, the Cayugas, the Senecas, the Oneidas, appropriate, for what we have lost in wild and the Mohawks,with their headquarters in the fruit by the clearing of the forests, we bave western part of New York State. The warmore than replaced by our extensive vineyards riors of these tribes were men of large stature of various varieties of the best of cultivated and muscular forms, and a savage determinagrapes. The Indians called it the Numma- tion marked every feature of the face. sepee, or River of Sturgeon, from the vast Military skill, courage, shrewdness, energy,

ambition and eloquence were their prominent As the travelers advanced into the interior, traits. In their policy they appear to have had by Indian trails, a beautiful scene opened be- more vigor and system than the other Indian fore them, the country being covered with tribes, and cherished a sort of spartan disci

uriant flowers of various and gorgeous colors also equally crafty and ferocious. They could covered the whole surface of the ground. It crawl, unseen, along the track of their enemies, seemed as if nature, amid the solitude, fresh in or rush down upon the French in fearless bands her virgin bloom, had adorned her bosom with of naked and gigantic warriors, and it is well the fragrant roses of summer in honor of her known that their marches against the French Maker; and vain of her charms had set our colonists and the remote missionary posts lake and river upon the landscape as mirrors to were like the rushing of a tornado through the

that colored the description of the French In 1784 a small body of Canadians settled on travelers of the eighteenth century through the River Raisin and laid the foundation of this country.

Frenchtown, built a few log cabins on both · [37]

A

banks of the river, and enclosed them and the Dr. A. I. Sawyer of this city, and the famed surrounding land with pickets or “puncheons," pear trees, planted by the hands of Colonel Franmade of sapling logs, split in two, driven in the cis Navarre over a century ago, now yield their ground and sometimes sharpened at the top, fruit, as they so bountifully have done for so. thus forming a very good means of defense many years, averaging yearly forty bushels. against the Indians.

They stand as monuments to the memory of A narrow path ran along the bank of the an industrious man, and remind us that a few river and border of the front of the farms on hours of pleasant labor live with blessings for each side of the River Raisin. It was a depot our own brief life and for those that follow us. of the fur-traders for the Northwest Company, The first American settlement was established and for a long period the concentrating point for at Frenchtown in 1793, and at that time Detroit the surrounding Indians, who were continually and Frenchtown were the principal settlerepairing to the town in order to exchange ments on the eastern side of the peninsula of their furs for blankets, red cloth, silver orna- Michigan. In 1796 Captain Porter first raised ments, arms and ammunition, mindful also of the American banner at this point on the soil the stock of fire-water, of which ample provision of Michigan. was made. Money was refused in exchange for On the 11th of January, 1805, the act was goods, and the French were required to bring passed for the organization of the Territory of in produce in exchange for them, which was Michigan, and General William Hull was aptransported to the Upper Lakes for the use of pointed Governor and Indian Agent, and on the Fur Company stations.

the 5th of September following, measures were In the year 1785, a treaty was made with taken for the organization of the militia of the the tribes of the Ottawas, Chippewas, Dela- Territory. The Second Regiment was organwares and Wyandots, by which a belt of land, ized for the district of Erie, and John Anderson, commencing at the River Raisin and extending of Frenchtown, was appointed colonel. to Lake St. Clair, with a breadth of six It was very difficult to organize efficient miles along the strait, was ceded to the United military companies among the population of States, and was the only soil which could be the Territory at this time. The French inappropriated by the whites for cultivation. habitants, although brave almost to a fault, and

About this time was organized the first having genuine taste for military glory, were church on the River Raisin, the French Catholic, here unaccustomed to discipline and disliked when the Rev. Mr. Frichett visited the settle- its restraints. Amusing accounts are given of ment as a missionary. Soon after the first attempts to organize the militia in the disstationed priest arrived – the Rev. Antoine trict of Erie. At one time Colonel Anderson had A. Gillett, who remained until the year 1805. most of his officers under arrest for appearing This society built, about the year 1788, the first on parade without uniforms, and they were church building ever erected in the county; very anxious to know their fate. He comwas located some two miles west of our city on plained that the more he drilled his men the the north bank of the river, and was at this less they knew. time the central part of the settlement. The As early as 1806, rumors of a deep-seated building was in a dilapidated condition taken and growing feeling of dissatisfaction among down in 1842.

the Indians began to prevail. Tecumseh (the The first settler or fur-trader was Joseph word in Indian parlance signifying "the tiger Pulier Benac, then Colonel Francis Navarre, crouching for his prey”) and Ell-shwa-taw-a Charles and Jobn Baptiste Jerome. In 1780, (or the prophet), the twin brother of Tecumseh, Colonel Francis Navarre rode from Detroit by sprang into great prominence. the Indian trail on a French pony, carrying Tecumseh was a warrior of the Shawanese in his band some pear trees the size of your tribe - without any hereditary claim to dislittle finger that he set out on his lot west of the tinction-a seceder from the legitimate aublock-house, which was subsequently clap- thority of his nation, the builder of his own boarded and used as the Episcopal Church par. fortune. He was an open and avowed hater sonage, afterwards demolished. The site thereof of the Americans, and was determined in his is now owned and occupied as the residence of opposition to the advance of the nation on

1

the Indian domain, and doubtless urged by in the fields, and with their tomahawks demol. the British Government to organize a general ished the bee-hives which were found in their confederacy against the United States.

gardens. In 1807 the efforts to organize this confeder- Soon after the surrender, Colonel Anderson, acy on the lakes had been commenced. Agents who had from his efficiency as colonel of the were dispatched from the headquarters of the militia and exertions as an organizer become Shawanese to the lake Indians, with messages prominent, was a marked man by Tecumseh and belts of wampum; and the minds of the and his band, and they were determined to savages were aroused to desperate action. The take his life. The Colonel, with the small points insisted on were that the Americans number of Americans on the river, were comshould be driven back over the Allegheny pelled to leave to escape the vengeance of the Mountains, and that the war should not be ter. Indians, leaving his wife (the sister of James minated until that object was accomplished. Knaggs) in possession of bis store and property. That after this was effected, the Indians should He then resided on the site on Elm Avenue have undisturbed possession of their ancient now owned and occupied as the residence of hunting-grounds and be placed under the pro- Talcott E. Wing, Esq. A portion of the house tection of the British Government, and the was occupied as a residence, the remainder as warriors that distinguished themselves in the a store and fur-trading establishment, liberwar should be publicly recognized and receive ally supplied with goods adapted to the wants presents from the British monarch of large of the Indians, together with an abundant medals.

supply of fire-water. Mrs. Anderson was con.

1

.

instigated by the British Government to effect various tribes of Indians, and had as a clerk this confederation, in order to co-operate with and helper in the store become well acquainted the English when war should be declared be- with most of the trading Indians. When the tween England and the United States, which news reached her of the capture of General Winthen seemed inevitable. While these events chester and his forces, knowing well the habits were transpiring the Territory of Michigan was and customs of the savages, especially when in a comparatively defenseless state. The set- under the influence of liquor, she hurried to tlements on the Miami, the Raisin and the the cellar of the store, where the liquors were Huron comprised a population of only 1,340; stored, and caused the heads of the whisky four-fifths were French, and the remainder barrels to be knocked in. The Indians burst Americans, with a small portion of British. in the door, ransacked the store, then repaired

The hostile spirit which had been thus ex- to the cellar, prostrated themselves on their cited by Tecumseh and the Prophet, soon man breasts and filled themselves with whisky. ifested itself upon our frontier. The scattered When besotted, drunk and wild, they returned settlements along the inland streams were at to the portion of the house occupied as a resi. that time much exposed to the depredations of dence, with the most unearthly yells and the Indians, and the emigrants found their whoops; emptied the scalps they had gathered cattle slaughtered around their huts. At French- in bags on the parlor floor, and dancing around town this devastation was carried to the most the room, slapped the bleeding scalps against formidable extent before the declaration of war and bespattering and disfiguring the walls and between England and the United States. ceiling. Mrs. Anderson was in the room ad

At one time bands of naked warriors, with joining, seated on a large chest containing the feathers on their heads (the Iroquois before money and valuables of her husband. The alluded to), made a descent upon Frenchtown, Indians approached her in a threatening and and in silence proceeded to destroy all property menacing manner, and with upraised tomawhich was supposed to be required for the sup- hawks and knives commanded her to rise up. port of the army in the coming contest. En- She having often traded with them and speaktering the houses of the French peasantry, they ing fluently their language, raised her voice to plundered the defenseless tenants of the pro. its highest pitch and pointing her finger at visions within them without exchanging a them, with the expression, “Shame, so many word with the occupants, cut down the cattle Indians fightone squaw," and was then, with the ·

Loston

interference of two resolute Indians, left un: the northeast of the brick church building, molested, retaining her treasures. : : opposite the “ Isle of Patmos.” The site of the

Colonel John Anderson was of Scotch descent, Mulhollen house was subsequently purchased and married at Maumee Miss Knaggs, the sister by the Hon. Charles Lanman, thereafter by of James Knaggs, who became distinguished in George B. Harleston. the war of 1812 as a scout, under Generals The site of the village, now city, of Monroe, Hull, Cass and Harrison. He removed to was at that time occupied as farming land, and Frenchtown about the year 1800, having one the Loranger farm, east of this tract, was, in son, John Anderson, who was born at Maumee. 1817, platted by Joseph Loranger into village After removing to Frenchtown he had one son, lots. After the settlement of Mr. Mulhollen on Alexander D. Anderson, who was an attorney, the river three children were born --Samuel, and for many years Judge of Probate for the Sarah and Aurilia - the first of whom is now livCounty of Monroe, and one daughter, Eliza, ing; the last named married Sylvester Brown, a who became the wife of the Hon. Warren Wing. very successful farmer of eminent piety, who, Immediately after the massacre in January,1813, late in life, sold his possessions, and with his Mrs. Anderson, with her three children, John, wife, spent the last years of their lives in the Alexander and Eliza, fled to Detroit and remain city of Monroe. There were at that time no ed there, hiring a house and keeping boarders to bridges, and Mrs. Sarah Rowe (nee Mulhollen) maintain herself and family until the return of well remembers fording the river in the sumColonel Anderson from Dayton, Ohio. As their mer months when the water was low, going to names were identical, the Colonel Anderson and coming from school, and when the water referred to above is often confounded with was high going and coming on horseback, the Colonel John Anderson, of the United States father having one child in front and the other Army, who, with Plympton and Kirby, pur- holding on behind. The first schoolmaster was chased the farms of Mulhollen and Egnew next a Mr. Hicock, who occupied a log house on the west of Monroe street, extending from the River north side of the river between the Clark and Raisin south to Plumb Creek, a portion of Downing farms. The second school was taught which was subsequently platted, and consti- on the north side of the river, opposite the tutes that portion of the city west of Monroe present residence of Talcott E. Wing, Esq. street.

The first school taught on the south side of The Loranger farm on the east side of Mon- the River Raisin was by Isaac P. Skinner, who roe street was purchased by Joseph Loranger will be remembered as for so many years thereof Judge Augustus B. Woodward, who bought it after Register of Deeds of the county of Monoriginally to qualify himself as judge under the roe. He occupied as a school house a large fourth section of tbe ordinance which required building built for and for many years used as a judge to own at least 500 acres of land, and a distillery, on the river bank, a little east of had given his place the euphonious name of the present residence of Doctor A. I. Sawyer. Euphemia, which it retained until the name of In an interview with Mrs. Rowe in 1887, she Monroe was substituted.

well remembered for months before the surrenAmong the number of the American families der of Hull (which surrender was in August, that escaped about the same time with Colonel 1812), the rumors of war between England and Anderson, were the families of Samuel Mul. America which were rife. The drilling of the hollen and Jared Egnew, who purchased for militia was of frequent occurrence, and for two $6 per acre the farm next adjoining the Joseph weeks before the surrender the family, in comLoranger tract on the west, the east line of which mon with other American families, sought prowas Monroe street, and the west Adams street, tection nights in the fort or stockade on the site extending south from the river to Plumb Creek, of the present residence of Major E. Chapman. constituting a part now of the first ward of the She also well remembers the scene that occurred city of Monroe. The western farm in the di. at her father's house immediately after the survision fell to Mr. Mulbollen, who built a log render of General Hull. The family were makhouse on the site where the "Harleston House" ing preparations to flee from the country, fearstood, now occupied by the German Catholicing and apprehensive of the ravages of hostile Church as a school-room, near and a little to Indians, who were in hordes traversing the

« ZurückWeiter »