Franklin T Oldt.

History of Dubuque County, Iowa; being a general survey of Dubuque County history, including a history of the city of Dubuque and special account of districts throughout the county, from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 1) online

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Online LibraryFranklin T OldtHistory of Dubuque County, Iowa; being a general survey of Dubuque County history, including a history of the city of Dubuque and special account of districts throughout the county, from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 1) → online text (page 36 of 56)
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disappoint the precedents he has .set. If he can disentangle himself
from the radical destructives who have governed and owned him
since he has been in power, he will do much more than we antici-
l)ate from him. It is almost as morally certain that he will bring
in the odious and everlasting nigger question as that the sun will
rise tomorrow; he will prove himself, we fear, instead of a wise
and judicious statesman, notliing l)ut a groveling Abolitionist, sac-
rificing tlie interests of a great and mighty nation and of millions


of white men to an abstract question about a few niggers. If he
should not do it, then indeed would Lincoln cease to be Lincoln." —
(Herald, April 12, 1865.)

On Sunday, April 16, the terrible news of Lincoln's assassination
was received and occasioned general regret and sorrow. Here,
as elsewhere in the North, many had come to believe him a tyrant,
and several rejoiced at his death. The Herald denounced the act
as an awful crime and issued bulletins, as did the Times. Many
voluntarily draped their buildings in mourning.

A grocer named Morrill, located at Main and Eighth streets, on
the morning of April 15, 1S65, offered to head a band of men to
tear down the Herald office.


In consequence of the sad news received by telegraph of the
cowardly assassination of our President and secretary of state, I
hereby request all places of business and saloons in the city to be
closed during the day and e\-ening. It is further requested that
all drape their buildings in mourning.

John Thompson, Mayor.

"It was but a short time before the city was almost entirely
draped in mourning, presenting a strange contrast from the gay
and festive aspect of the first part of the week. The streets had
the appearance of Sunday. Store rooms were closed and shutters
up. The banks closed business after 12 o'clock. Men gathered on
the street to talk of the atrocious deed. Tears rolled down the
cheeks of gray-haired men. The excitement was intense. From
joy the nation was turned to sorrow. No such a dismal looking
day was ever seen in this city before and we hope will never be
again. "^(HrraW/ April 16, 1865.)

"Precisely at 12 o'clock all the bells in the city commenced a
doleful tolling, continuing for an hour. All the churches, public
buildings and fire companies rung out a slow, mournful dirge that
fell on the ear like the spirit of the departed. On the levee the
observance was kept; flags trimmed with crape floated half-mast
and all the packets' bells tolled a funeral dirge. Sunday was not
more quiet than Main street during two hours yesterday. The
citizens assembled at the Congregational church according to public
announcement and', occupied an hour or more with services appro-
priate to the solemn occasion. The divines delivered fitting eulo-
gies on the death of the lamented President. Hon. W. B. Allison
made a few remarks appropriate to the occasion." — {Herald, April
20. 1865.)

"If there should ever be any violence or mobs in Dubuque — •
which we fervently hope will never be the case — we shall know


where to trace them and to wliom to lay the blame. These niin-
ii-ters propose to visit upon us the same vengeance Wilkes Booth
wreaked upon Mr. Lincoln, and think thereby, as he did, they are
doing God and humanity a service. Last Friday Parson Holmes
proposed the appointment of a committee to come down and mod-
crate our tone, but wise man that he is readily ga\-e wav to sapient
suggestion diat the matter should be deferred' till the so'ldiers come
home, when they would compel what he desired. Parson Whiting
hopes that the day will come when Dubuque will not be a disgrace
to Iowa and the North."— (//rraW. April 21, 1865.) The Herald
called these ministers "bloodhounds of Zion."

"We will give these men who are so eager to stir up strife in
Ihis community a bit of wholesome advice. It will be a sorry day
for them and their friends when they attempt any violence. They
are in the minority here and it is the intention to keep tliem there.
The Democracy will not allow themselves to be provoked into any
violence of any kind by taunts of 'shameless disloyalty' or by
threats of 'patriotic indignation'— they intend to preserve order,
obey the laws and criticise the acts of public men as thev please." —
(Herald, April 21, 1865.)

"Fanatical priests have been the curse of this country for the
last fifteen years. Casting aside the work of their Master, they
have entered fully into the service of the devil and have preached
the country into a revolution and now they want to preach it into
anarchy." — {Herald, April 22, 1865.)

On April 19, 1865, Bishop Smyth's fine barn containing two
fine Morgan horses worth $1,000, a carriage worth $500, two sets
of harness, a cow, a Newfoundland dog, a sleigh and a large
quantity of hay was burned by an incendiary. This was one of
the meanest, most contemptible acts ever perpetrated in this city;
it was denounced by everybody as a dastardly crime. The mayor
offered a reward of $1,000 for the arrest of the guilty ones.

"Rev. R. Nagle, McGregor.

"On last Wednesday (19th) about i o'clock in the morning, my
stable, coach-house, carriage, splendid horses, grain, etc., etc., were
all burned down by the foul hand of some southern secesh because
I had on last Sunday strongly condemned the bloody and cruel
assassination of our late lamented and humane President. I for-
give them and may God forgive them. Loss about $4,000.

Clement, Bishop of Dubuque.

"We believe this opinion of the bishop is as hasty as it is ill-
founded. AVe cannot think that there is any such rascal in Du-
buque. Still, if he is so confident in his knowledge, is it not his
duty as a good citizen to inform the officers of the law of the
guilty wretch." — (Herald, April 29, 1865.)


"If there had heen no Copperhead paper in Dubuque to call the
President 'bloody tyrant,' 'widow-maker,' 'wretch,' 'imbecile,' 'm-
human fool.' and to even seek to cast disgrace upon his mother
in asserting that he was a 'bastard,' Bishop Smyth would not have
lost his property. To be consistent the Herald ought to lavish
praise upon the incendiary. This act was but the practice of south-
ern rebels carried northward, and the Herald, you know, has ever
since the war commenced spared no praise in speaking of the acts
of 'the noble Confederates.' * * * We believe it was a ruf-
fian, born in the Catholic church, one of the ignorant beings who
are a disgrace to religion and society, who applied the torch to
the bishop's barn. We cannot expect anything else when the ipse
dixit of a Democratic defaulter is of more importance than the
kind admonitions of a venerable and kind-hearted prelate ; when
the verbiage of small lawyers and the drunken bluster of pros-
perous dunces are heeded in preference to the advice of those who
have no object but the spiritual and temporal welfare of their
charges. Let it be remembered for all time in Dubuque the humble
residence of the Catholic bishop was threatened by the torch of
an incendiary ; that his barn was fired because he denounced a
foul, infamous and unparalleled murder." — (Times, April 23,


In April, 1865, all recruiting was stopped by order of the au-
thorities. In May the Lincoln Monument Association was organ-
ized, the object being to raise means to erect in this city a monu-
ment to Abraham Lincoln. In June the Iowa regiments began
to be mustered out and be sent home. Often they came in small
squads, but when they came en masse they were received with
great ceremony and showered with honors. The Ninth and Fif-
teenth regiments were given such a reception at the City Hall in
July. The Thirty-fourth and Thirty-eighth regiments arrived in
September. The Fourth of July was duly celebrated in 1865. The
Herald could not say enough mean things against the men who
on that occasion exhibited an efiigy of Jefif Davis hanging to a
sour apple tree. The Copperheads refused to have read at their
celebration the emancipation proclamation, so there were several

In September, 1865, the first steps to form in Dubuque a per-
manent organization of the old sokliers were taken; several meet-
ings were held. On May 30, 1868, the organized old soldiers began
to observe Decoration day ; General Vandever was the chief speaker
this year. Gen. M. M. Trumbull was the chief orator in 1869.
D. B. Henderson was the chief orator in 1870. Gen. William
Hyde Clark died here in October, 1872. In 1861 he went out with
the Governor's Greys, was at Wilson's Creek, Pea Ridge and other
battles. The G. A. R. camp at Dubuque was named in his honor;
he offered the Greys to the governor in January, 1861. The an-



nual reunion of the Twenty-first regiment was held here in Sep-
tember, 1872. Tlie Dubuque Rifles were reorganized in 1875, with
Captain Duane at their head. Col. George jNIcHenry died here
in 1877; he assisted in raising the company for the Mexican war;
he previously had been colonel of militia at Jacksonville, Illinois.
He was a "war Democrat." In 1877 the Fourth regiment of
National Guards was organized in this county. Capt. M. M. Hay-
den died in 1876; in 1854 he became captain of the City Guards;
his rebellion record was brilliant. The Dubuque Light Artillery
company was organized in 1878. In 1878 three companies of
Dubuque were members of the Fourth regiment: Dubuque Rifles,
Dubuque Guards and Dubuque Cadets. C. S. Bentley was colonel
of the regiment. In August, 1881, the members of Company I,
First regiment, organized in order to preserve the memories of
the battle of Wilson's Creek. The immense national military en-
campment was held here in August, 1882 ; nearly thirty military
organizations participated; they came from all parts of tlie Union.
Several hundred tents constituted their home at "Camp Dubuque"
on the Fair Grounds. This was by all odds the finest military
display ever seen here ; 25,000 people saw the sham fight. Drills,
parades, steeplechase, gun contests, etc., entertained all persons.
The United States signal corps gave a fine exhibition. The Por-
ter Guards, of New Orleans, won first prize of $1,000 for general
excellence. The total receipts were $12,820 and the total expenses
$13,665.13. Another, even larger, was held in June at Dubuque in
1884; this was the largest ever held in the Northwest. Over
thirty companies were here the first day and in all about forty were
present later. Ten bands furnished music. As before, all sorts
of contests enlivened the event. The Mobile Rifles took first prize
and Tredway Rifles, of St. Louis, second prize.

The Governor's Greys had four distinct organizations : ( i ) In
1858, under Governor Hempsteatl, from whom it took its name;
(2) in 1859; (3) '" 1864; (4) in 1885. Its temporary officers in
1885 were W. H. Thrift, acting captain; C. D. Hayden, first lieu-
tenant ; C. D. Ham, second lieutenant ; they drilled in the City
Hall. On July i, 1885, they numbered forty-one. At the organi-
zation the old members yet alive were George L. Torbert, J. F.
Bates, C. N. Clark, J. B. Howard, W. W. Wormood, J. K. Graves,
G. B. Grosvenor, S. M. Pollock, Horace Poole, Alonzo Cragin,
A. Y. McDonald, V. J. Williams, B. M. Harger, F. H. Carberry,
and others. In 1886 Governor Larrabee attended the Greys' ball.
The Greys represented the state at the Centennial in Philadelphia
in 1887. Their new officers in 1887 were C. D. Hayden, captain;
CD. Ham, first lieutenant; F. D. Shiras, second lieutenant. In
1890 the officers were W. H. Thrift, captain; B. F. Blockinger,
first lieutenant ; A. M. Jaeggi, second lieutenant. The Greys'
armory was dedicated in 1892. The Greys in October, 1892, rep-


resented the state at the opening of the Columbian Exposition at
Chicago. Captain Thrift and Private Becker became involved in
serious trouble in 1S92; the latter was dropped from the rolls, but
this was declared to be a whitewash of the captain.

A joint committee of the legislature visited Dubuque in 1886
to inspect proposed sites for the Soldiers' Orphans' Home. There
was sharp competition among the cities of Iowa for this institu-
tion. Dubuque tried hard to get it, but was defeated by Marshall-
town by only one vote; this city would no doubt have won had
not tiie ri^'al cities raked up the disloyal record of this community
during the rebellion. The Grand Army encampment of Iowa was
held here in 1887; it was a notable event. The G. A. R. held an-
other encampment here in 1891 ; 15,000 visitors were present; 3,000
veterans were in line; Governor Boies addressed the old soldiers;
50,000 people saw the parade ; the Woman's Relief Corps was well
represented ; the largest crowd ever here saw the performances.
Col. J. F. Bates died in 1892; his military record was splendid. In
1892 Gen. George W. Jones was granted a special pension of $20;
he was a drummer boy in the War of 1812; served on the staff
of General Dodge in the Black Hawk war.

The First Regiment of Iowa National Guards in 1898 comprised
the following companies: Company A, of Dubuque; B, of Water-
loo; C, of Cedar Rapids; D, of Charles City; E. of Independence;
F, of Tipton; G, of Vinton; H, of Marshalltown; I, of Waukon;
K, of Toledo; L, of Lyons, and M, of Maquoketa. The Dubuque
Company A was the Governor's Greys. In April, 1898, W. G.
Dows, of Cedar Rapids, was elected colonel of this regiment.

It was presumed that in case of war with Spain the Governor's
Greys, as Company A, of the National Guard, would, of course,
become the volunteers called for from Dubuque. It was due to this
reason that the Greys themselves did little when war commenced.
But this course did not suit others here. On April 18 Capt. W. H.
Thrift issued a call for volunteers independent of the National
Guards. On April 18 a large war meeting, presided over by Mayor
Berg, was held. Colonel Lyon delivered one of his fiery speeches.
Other speakers were Senator Malley, Rev. L. M. Waterman and
Captains Dow and Thrift. Volunteers were enrolled, but how
many is unknown, as no record was kept. The call by Captain
Thrift extended over northwest Iowa and was for a full regiment.
But this call was wholly unauthorized and was disclaimed by
Adjutant General Byers.

About this time the Twenty-fifth Regiment (colored) and the
Second Regiment of regulars passed through Dubuque for the
front. Thousands of citizens gathered to see the latter. In the
meantime the Greys began to drill every night and get ready for
camp. On April 22 Adjutant General Byers notified the National
Guard throughout the state to get ready for service. On April 23


President IMcKinley called for 125,000 men for two years. The
officers of the First Regiment were as follows: \V. G. Dows,
colonel; Clifford D. Ham, senior major; Benjamin V. Blocklinger,
junior major; Dr. J. R. Guthrie, assistant surgeon; A. M. Jaeggi,
battalion agent; W. H. Thrift, inspector. The officers of Company
A were as follows : William M. Flynn, captain ; Jacob R. Ballou,
first lieutenant ; Charles J. Stewart, second lieutenant. The Greys
were not up to the full number required and besides several dropped
out, not finding it convenient to go. This left the company with
three corporals and twenty-four privates, besides the officers. There
was also here the regimental band, under Drum Major Joseph Reis.
Recruits were hurriedly called for, drilling occurred every night,
and on April 29 the company left for Des Moines, pursuant to the
following call :

Capt. W. M. Flynn :

Assemble your company and report at Camp McKinley, Des
Moines, tomorrow morning.

W. H. BvERS, Adjutant General.

When this dispatch was received it was quite late in the evening
of the 24th ; the company was then drilling and a large crowd was
present. At once a hush fell upon the audience, drilling ceased and
after a hurried consultation, it was determined to leave at 4 o'clock
the next morning in order to reach Des Moines according to the
above dispatch. Bells throughout the city were tolled at 11 o'clock
that night, whistles were blown and from that time until the hour
of departure the whole city was in a state of great excitement. At
Ninth and Main streets rockets were set ofif, firecrackers were ex-
ploded, tin horns were blown and all seemed like an imixirtant
election night. At 2 o'clock in the morning the Greys had luncheon.
At 3 o'clock it was decided that the First Regiment band should
accompany the Greys. As the moment of departure drew near an
immense crowd gathered to bid the "boys" farewell and see them
go. Much feeling was shown, because they were the pride of the
city and all left behind loved ones, who believed that many would
never return. The company marched down Ninth street to Main,
thence to Eighth and thence east to the station. Forty-four left
at this time; of these thirty-five were privates.

Soon after the arrival of the required regiments at Des Moines
it was announced that the First was too small, and as it was consid-
ered the latest organized with regimental officers, it would l)e sent
home, to be recruited up to tlie limit. It was suggested that the
First should be distributed among the other three regiments, but
this step was vehemently opposed by the whole regiment. The
riglits of the regiments to service were in the order of the election
of their colonels, announced .Xdjutanl General Byers. In order to








settle the difficulty Governor Shaw advised the consolidation of the
four small regiments into three, but all opposed this step. It was
then proposed to send one regiment home, but this step was likewise
opposed by all the four regiments.

An appeal was then made to Secretary of War Alger so to change
the call that all four regiments could be accepted as they were.
This appeal failed, although it went to President McKinley him-
self. Finally all the Iowa congressmen and the two senators were
lined up against the war authorities, no doubt with intimations of
the dire consequences that would affect their political fences at home
in case they failed. Hot telegrams flew to Allison with the result
all four regiments were accepted, though the two light batteries
were not wanted. Under this arrangement the number of men
required from Iowa was 3,336. The Greys at once enlisted enough
recruits to fill up their company.

When the war commenced there were four military districts in
the state and four regiments of National Guards. The call was
for three regiments of infantry and two light batteries, or for a total
of 3,321 men. Each of the four military districts sent forward a
regiment. Then the question arose, how should the four small
regiments be combined so as to form three full-sized ones?

The First Regiment became the Forty-ninth Iowa, the number
following the last one of the Civil War. In June it was ordered to
Jacksonville, Florida, where it suffered much from disease. Pre-
vious to August the number of sick at any one time did not exceed
from ten to fifteen, but in that month the number in the hospital ran
up suddenly to sixty and seventy, although the regiment was moved
out to a much better place on a sandy knoll, where the drainage was
good. Late in October the regiment was transferred to Savannah
and late in December sailed for Havana, where it did guard and
scout duty until ordered home to be mustered out. It returned to
Savannah in April, 1899. Company A lost during its service Charles
E. Lobdell and Henry Becker, the former of typhoid and the latter
from injuries resulting from falling down a hatchway.

Upon their return, in May, 1899, the members of Company A
were given a splendid reception, fully 10,000 people turning out to
welcome them at the station. They had done their duty, had suf-
fered much, and were treated royally on this memorable occasion.

During the Spanish- American war the vessels Ericsson and Win-
dom, which had been built in Dubuque, were used by the United
States Navy in West India waters. They gave a satisfactory account
of themselves.

On November 5, 1893, thousands of persons gathered at Lin-
wood cemetery to witness the unveiling of the soldiers' monument.
T. W. Ruete was president of the day. The bands. Greys, Grand
Army posts and Sons of Veterans participated. Miss Hayden
unveiled the beautiful monument. Doctor Staples made the pres-


entation speech, after wliich Dr. E. A. Guilbert dedicated the monu-
ment according to the Grand Army ritual. Judge O'Donncll de-
livered a splendid oration, glorifying the soldiers dead and alive and
extolling the country as the home of freedom and justice. The work
of collecting funds for this monument had been in progress for
twelve years.

Soon after the war the Grand Army established Hyde Clark
Post No. 78 in Dubuque. It has been in existence ever since. Also
Lookout Post No. 70 was formed here. A post was later estab-
lished at Cascade — No. 369. They observe Decoration day regu-
larly and are always honored on Fourth of July and at public func-
tions. Henderson Camp Sons of Veterans was established a few
years ago. The Woman's Relief Corps is a prominent feature of
the Grand Army reunions. The Daughters of the American Revo-
lution organized in Dubuque about 1893. In Linwood cemetery
repose the remains of four soldiers who served in the War of 1812 :
Preston Eyre, Moses Eggleston, Peter de Lorimier and Zephaniah

The following is a copy of the original roster of the Greys on
May 2, 1859: H. H. Heath, William Hyde Clark, Henry C.
Paxson, James C. Van Pelt, T- B. Howard, J. F. Bates, William F.
Rapides, U. S. Gilbert, F. J. Herron, M. W. Smith, F. A. Doolittle,
J. B. Smith, Charles N. Clark, F. T. Goodrich, H. B. Gififord, G. B.
Smith, G. B. Grosvenor, A. Russell, George W. Waldron, James C.
Bennett, James Steel, John M. McDaneld, Sol. Turck, H. Curtis,
V. J. David, S. M. Pollock, Q. Bronson, A. Williams, Charles
Burtleson, William W. Wormood, H. D. Farquharson, William
Luther, V. H. Sutkamp, Edward Wright, J. M. Robinson, J. K.
Graves and W. T. Barker.

The Greys often hold fairs and other assemblages, and tlieir
efforts are always appreciated and admired. In 1894 the Greys,
upon special invitation, attended Mardi Gras at New Orleans and
were signally recognized, toasted and honored. The Spanish \Var
Veterans are a recent organization. In the fall of 1899 Dubuque
was honored by a visit from a former Dubuquer, Commander Gott-
fried Blocklinger, of the Navy. He commanded the cruiser Charles-
ton in the Philippines. In December, 1908, a beautiful sword was
sent to him at Washington upon his accession to the rank of rear
admiral. .Xt this date he commanded the battleshi]) Illinois. In
1905 Capt. Albert Jaeggi was commander of the local Spanish-
American war veterans. He was promoted to adjutant general in
1907. In June of this year the Iowa Grand Army Encampment
was held in Dubuque and was one of the most notable events in llie
history of the city. Thousands gathered to witness the proceedings.
A soldiers' memorial hall will probably soon be built in Dubuque.


WHEN Wisconsin territory was separated from Michigan
territory in 1836, George W. Jones represented the latter
in Congress, and was chosen at once to represent the
former in that body.

A pubhc dinner was given Gov. Henry Dodge on the occasion
of his visit to Dnbnque, July 16. 1836. He stopped at the Wash-
ington House. There were present at the dinner Lockwood, Quig-
ley, Stoddard, Camp, Hempstead, Morrison, Lorimier, Rice, King,
Coriell, Hogan, Sleator, Osman, L. H. Langworthy, Hughes, My-
ers, Jones, Lott, Fassitt, Harrison, Prentice, Butterworth, Graham,
Wright, Lewis, Finley, Bourne, Langley.

In September, 1836, a large Democratic meeting was held in the
woods on Bee Branch, near Dubuque, to name candidates for the
October election. The meeting denounced the "secret speculators'
bill" in Congress and also declared against "caucus dictation." A
full ticket was nominated.

At the October election in 1836 all candidates were required to
a-\'ow that they favored Dubuque as the capital of Wisconsin
territory, favored tlie formation of townships, common schools,
internal impro\'ement, and were opposed to the division of Du-
buque county into other counties ; this avowal was made at the in-

Online LibraryFranklin T OldtHistory of Dubuque County, Iowa; being a general survey of Dubuque County history, including a history of the city of Dubuque and special account of districts throughout the county, from the earliest settlement to the present time (Volume 1) → online text (page 36 of 56)