Newton Bateman.

Historical encyclopedia of Illinois online

. (page 98 of 207)
Online LibraryNewton BatemanHistorical encyclopedia of Illinois → online text (page 98 of 207)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


mating arrangements for the performance of a
large contract on the Union Pacific Railroad.

SAMTARY COMMISSION. (See nUyiois San-
itary Commissiiin. )

SAMTARY DISTRICT OF CHICAGO. (See
Chicago Drainage Canal. )

SAUGANASH, the Indian name of a half-breed
known as Capt. Billy Caldwell, the son of a
British officer and a Pottawatomie woman, born
in Canada about 1780; received an education
from the Jesuits at Detroit, and was able to
speak and write EngUsh and French, besides
several Indian dialects ; was a friend of Tecum-
seh's and, during the latter part of his life, a
devoted friend of the whites. He took up his
residence in Chicago about 1820, and, in 1826,
was a Justice of the Peace, while nominally a



subject of Great Britain and a Chief of the Otta-
was and Pottawatomies. In 1828 the Govern-
ment, in consideration of his services, built for
him the first frame house ever erected in Chicago,
which he occupied until his departure with his
tribe for Council Bluffs in 1836. By a treaty,
made Jan. 2, 1830, reservations were granted by
the Government to Sauganash, Shabona and
other friendly Indians (see Shabona), and 1,240
acres on the North Branch of Chicago River set
apart for Caldwell, which he sold before leaving
the country. Died, at Council Bluffs, Iowa,
Sept. 28, 1841.

SAVAGE, George S. F., D.D., clergyman, was
born at Cromwell, Conn., Jan. 29, 1817; gradu-
ated at Yale College in 1844 ; studied theology at
Andover and New Haven, graduating in 1847;
was ordained a home missionary the same year
and spent twelve years as pastor at St. Charles,
111. , for four years being corresponding editor of
"The Prairie Herald" and "The Congregational
Herald." For ten years he was in the service of
the American Tract Society, and, during the Civil
War, was engaged in sanitary and religious work
in the army. In 1870 he was appointed Western
Secretary of the Congregational Publishing
Society, remaining two years, after wliich he be-
came Financial Secretary of the Chicago Thecj-
logical Seminary. He has also been a Director
of the institution since 1854, a Trustee of Beloit
College since 1850, and, for several years, editor
and publisher of "The Congregational Review."

SAVANNA, a city in Carroll County, situated
on the Mississippi River and tlie Cliicago, Bur-
lington & Northern and the Chicago, Milwaukee
& St. Paul Railways ; is 10 miles west of Mount
Carroll, and about 20 miles north of Clinton,
Iowa. It is an important shipping point and
contains several manufactories of machinery,
lumber, flour, etc. It has a State bank, several
churches, two graded schools and two daily ami
weekly newspapers. Population (1880), 1,000;
(1890), 3,097,

SAYBROOK, a village of McLean County, on
the Lake Erie & Western Railroad, 16 miles east
of Bloomington. The district is agricultural;
the town has a bank and two newspapers.
Population (1880), 734; (1890), 851.

SCATES, Walter Bennett, jurist and soldier,
was born at South Boston, Halifax County, Ya. ,
Jan. 18, 1808 ; was taken in infancy to Hopkins-
ville, Ky., where he resided until 1831, having
meanwhile learned the printer's trade at Nash-
ville and studied law at Louisville. In 1831 he
removed to Frankfort, Franklin County, 111.,



IIISTOKICAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ILLINOIS.



467



wiiere, for a time, he was County Surveyor. In
isiit), haviug been appointed Attorney General,
lie removed to Vandalia. then the seat of govern-
meut, but resigned at the close of the same year
to accept the judgeship of the Tliird Judicial
Circuit, and took up his residence at Shawnee-
town. In iy41 he was one of five new Judges
added to the Supreme Court bench, the others
being Sidney Breese, Stephen A. Douglas,
Tliomas Ford and Samuel H. Treat. In that
year he removed to Mount Vernon, Jeiferson
County, and, in January, 1847, resigned his seat
upon the bench to resume practice. The same
year he was a member of the Constitutional Con-
vention and Chairman of the Committee on
Judiciarj'. In June. 18.54, he again took a seat
upon the Supreme Court bench, being chosen to
succeed Lyman Trumbull, but resigned in May,
18.57, and resumed practice in Chicago. In
1803 he volunteered in defense of the Union,
received a Major's commission and was assigned
to duty on the staff of General McClernand ; was
made. Assistant Adjutant-General and mustered
out in January, 1866. In July, 1866, President
Johnson appointed him Collector of Customs at
Chicago, which po.sition he filled until July 1,
18tjil when he was removed by President Grant,
during the same period, being ex-officio custodian
of United States funds, the office of Assistant
Treasurer not having been then created. Died,
at Evanston, Oct. 26, 1886.

SCAMMOJf, Jonathan Youug', lawyer and
banker, was born at Whitefieid, Maine. July 27,
1812; after graduating at Waterville (now Colby)
University in 1831, he studied law and was
admitted to the bar at Hallowell, in 183-5 remov-
ing to Chicago, where he spent the remainder of
his life. After a year spent as deputy in the
office of the Circuit Clerk of Cook County, during
which he prepared a revision of the Illinois stat-
utes, he was appointed attorney for the State
Bank of Illinois in 1837, and, in 1839, became
leporter of the Supreme Court, which office lie
held until 1845. In the meantime, he was associ-
ated with several prominent lawyers, his first
legal iirm being that of .Scammon, McCagg &
Fuller, which was continued up to the fire of
1871. A large operator in real estate and identi-
fied with many enterprises of a public or benevo-
lent character, his most important financial
venture was in connection with the Chicago
Marine & Fire Insurance Company, which con-
ducted an extensive banking business for many
years, and of which he was the President and
leading spirit. As a citizen he was progressive,



public-spirited and liberal. He was one of the
main promoters and organizers of the old Galena
& Chicago Union Railway, the first railroad to
run west from Lake Michigan ; was also promi-
nently identified with the founding of the Chi-
cago public school system, a Trustee of the (old)
Chicago University, and one of the founders of
the Chicago Historical Society, of the Chicago
Academy of Sciences and the Chicago Astro-
nomical Soiuety — being the first President
of the latter body. He erected, at a cost of
§30,000, the Fort Dearborn Observatory, in
which he caiLsed to be placed the most power-
ful telescope which had at that time been brought
to the West. He also maintained the observatory
at his own expense. He was the pioneer of
Swedenborgianism in Chicago, and, in politics, a
staunch Whig, and, later, an ardent Republican.
In 1844 he was one of the founders of "The Chi-
cago American," a paper designed to advance
the candidacy of Henry Clay for the Presidency ;
and, in 1872, when "The Chicago Tribune"
espoused the Liberal Republican cause, he started
"The Inter-Ocean" as a Republican organ, being,
for some time, its sole proprietor and editor-in-
chief. He was one of the fii-st to encourage the
adoption of the homeopathic system of medicine
in Chicago, and was prominently connected with
the founding of the Hahnemann Medical College
and the Hahnemann Hospital, being a Trustee in
both for many years. As a member of the Gen-
eral Assembly he secured the i)as.sage of many
important measures, among them being legisla-
tion looking toward the bettering of the currency
and the banking system. He accumulated a
large fortune, but lost most of it by the fire of
1871 and the panic of 1873. Died, in Chicago,
March 17, 1890.

SCARRITT, Nathan, pioneer, was born in Con-
necticut, came to Edwardsville, 111., in 1820, and,
in 1821, located in Scarritfs Prairie, Madison
County. His sons afterward became influential
in business and Methodist church circles. Died,
Dec. 12, 1847.

SCENERY, NATURAL. Notwithstanding the
uniformity of surface which characterizes a
country containing no mountain ranges, but
which is made up largely of natural prairies,
there are a number of localities in Illinois where
scenery of a |)icture.sque. and even bold and
rugged character, may be found. One of the
most striking of these features is produced by a
spur or low range of hills from the Ozark Moun-
tains of Missouri, projected across the southern
part of the State from the vicinity of Grand



468



HISTOEICAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ILLINOIS.



Tower in Jackson County, through tlie northern
part of Union, and through portions of William-
son, Johnson, Saline, Pope and Hardin Counties.
Grand Tower, the initial point in the western
part of the State, is an isolated cliff of limestone,
standing out in the channel of the Mississippi,
and forming an island nearly 100 feet above low-
water level. It has been a conspicuous landmark
for navigators ever since the discovery of the
Mississippi. "Fountain Bluff," a few miles
above Grand Tower, is another conspicuous point
immediately on the river bank, formed by some
isolated hills about three miles long by a mile
and a half wide, which have withstood the forces
that excavated the valley now occupied by the
Mississippi. About half a mile from the lower
end of this hill, with a low valley between them,
is a smaller eminence known as the "Devil's
Bake Oven." The main chain of bluffs, known
as the "Back Bone," is about five miles from the
river, and rises to a height of nearly 700 feet
above low-tide in the Gulf of Mexico, or more
than 400 feet above the level of the river at
Cairo. "Bald Knob" is a very prominent inland
bluff promontory near Alta Pass on the line of
the Mobile & Ohio Railroad, in the nortliern part
of Union County, with an elevation above tide-
water of 'JHo feet. The highest point in this
range of hills is reached in the northeastern part
of Pope County — the elevation at that point (as
ascertained by Prof. Rolfe of the State University
at Champaign) being 1,046 feet. — There is some
striking scenery in the neighborhood of Grafton
between Alton and the mouth of the Illinois, as
well as some distance up the latter stream —
though the landscape along the middle section of
tlie Illinois is generallj^ monotonous or only
gently undulating, except at Peoria and a few
otlier points, where bluffs rise to a considerable
height. On the Upper Illinois, beginning at
Peru, the scenery again becomes picturesque,
including the celebrated "Starved Rock," the
site of La Salle's Fort St. Louis (which see).
Tliis rook rises to a perpendicular height of
about 125 feet from the surface of the river at the
ordinary stage. On the opposite side of the river,
about four miles below Ottawa, is "Buffalo
Rock," an i-solated ridge of rock about two miles
long by forty to sixty rods wide, evidently once
an island at a period when the Illinois River
occupied the whole valley. Additional interest
is given to both these localities by their associ-
ation with early history. Deer Park, on the Ver-
milion River — some two miles from where it
empties into tlie Illinois, just below "Starved



Rock" ' — is a peculiar grotto-like formation, caused
by a ravine which enters the Vermilion at this
point. Ascending this ravine from its mouth,
for a quarter of a mile, between almost perpen-
dicular walls, the road terminates abruptly at a
dome-like overhanging rock which widens at this
point to about loO feet in diameter at the base,
with a height of about 75 feet. A clear spring
of water gushes from the base of the cliff, and, at
certain seasons of the year, a beautiul water-fall
pours from the cliffs into a little lake at the bot-
tom of the chasm. There is much other striking
scenery higher up, on both the Illinois and Fox
Rivers. — A point which arrested the attention of
the earliest explorers in this region was Mount
Joliet, near the citj' of that name. It is first
mentioned by St. Cosme in 1698, and has been
variously known as Mon jolly, Mont Jolie, Mount
Juliet, and Mount Joliet. It had an elevation, in
early times, of about 30 feet with a level top
1,300 by 225 feet. Prof. O. H. Marshall, in "The
American Antiquarian," expresses the opinion
that, originally, it was an island in the river,
which, at a remote period, swept down the valley
of the Des Plaines. Mount Joliet was a favorite
rallying point of Illinois Indians,- who were
accustomed to hold their councils at its base. —
The scenery along Rock River is not striking
from its boldness, but it attracted the attention
of early explorers by the picturesque beauty of
its groves, undulating plains and sheets of water.
The highest and most abrupt elevations are met
with in Jo Daviess County, near the 'Wisconsin
State line. Pilot Knob, a natural mound about
three miles south of Galena and two miles from
the Mississippi, has been a landmark well known
to tourists and river men ever since the Upper
Mississippi began to be navigated. Towering
above the surrounding bluffs, it reaches an alti-
tude of some 430 feet above the ordinary level of
Fever River. A chain of some half dozen of these
mounds extends some four or five miles in a north-
easterly direction from Pilot Knob, Waddel's and
Jackson's Mounds being cousiiicuous among
them. There are also some castellated rocks
around the city of Galena which are very strik-
ing. Charles Mound, ' belonging to the system
already referred to, is believed to be the highest
elevation in the State. It stands near the Wis
cousin State line, and, according to Prof. Rolfe,
lias an altitude of 814 feet above the Illinois Cen-
tral Railroad at Scales' Mound Station, and, 1,257
feet above the Gulf of Mexico.

SCHAUMBERCJ, a village in Schaumberg
Township, Cook County. Population, 578.



HISTORICAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ILLINOIS.



4G!l



SCHNEIDER, George, journalist ami banlier,
was born at Pinuasens, Bavaria, Dec. 13, laSIl
Being sentenced to death for his participation in
the attempted rebellion of 1848. he escaped to
America in 1849, going from New York to Cleve-
land, and afterwards to St. Louis. There, in con-
nection with his brother, he established a German
daily — "The New Er;t" — which was intensely
anti-slavery and exerted a decided political influ-
ence, especially among persons of German birth.
In 1851 he removed to Chicago, where he becaiim
editor of '"The .Staats Zeitung," in which he
vigorously opposed the Kansas-Nebraska bill on
its introduction by Senator Douglas. His attitude
and articles gave such offense to the partisan
friends of this measure, that "The Zeitung'" was
threatened with destruction by a mob in 18.').').
He early took advanced ground in opposition to
slavery, and was a member of the convention of
Anti-Nebraska editors, held at Decatur in 1856,
and of the first Republican State Convention, heUl
at Bloomingtou the same j'ear, as well as of the
National Republican Conventions of 1856 and
1860, participating in the nomination of botli
Jolm C. Fremont and Abraham Lincoln for the
Presidency. In 1861 he was a member of the
Chicago Union Defense Committee, and was
api>ointed, by Mr. Lincoln, Consul-Geueral at
Elsinore, Denmark. Returning to America in
1863, he disposed of his interest in "The Staats
Zeitimg" and was appointed the first Collector of
Internal Revenue for the Chicago District. On
retiring from this office he engaged in banking,
subsequently becoming President of the National
Bank of Illinois, with which he was associated
for a quarter of a century. In 1877 President
Hayes tendered him the ministry to Switzerland,
which he declined. In 1880 he was chosen Presi
dential Elector for the State-at-large, also serving
for a number of years as a member of the Repub-
lican State Central Committee.

SCHOFIELD, John McAllister, Major-General,
was born in Chautauqua County, N. Y., Sept 29,
1831; brought to Bristol, Kendall County, 111., in
1843, and, two years later, removed to Freeport :
graduated from the United States Military Acad-
emy, in 1853, as classmate of Generals McPherson
and Sheridan ; was assigned to the artillery ser-
vice and served two years in Florida, after whit^h
he spent five years (1855-60) as an instructor at
West Point. At the beginning of the Civil War
he was on leave of absence, acting as Professor
of Physics in Washington University at St.
Louis, but, waiving his leave, he at once returned
to duty and was appointed mustering officer;



then, by permission of tlic War Department,
entered the First Missouri Volunteers as Major,
serving as Chief of Staff to General Lyon in the
early battles in Missouri, incluiling Wilson's
Creek. His subsequent career included the
organization of the Missouri State Militia (1862),
command of the Army of the Frontier in South-
west Missouri, command of the Department of
the Missouri and Ohio, participation in the
Atlanta campaign and co-operation with Sher-
man in the capture of the rebel Gen. Joseph E.
Johnston in North Carolina— his army having
been transferred for this purpose, from Tennessee
by way of Washington. After the close of the
war he went on a sjiecial mission to Sfexico
to investigate the French occupation of that
country ; was commander of the Department o{
the Potomac, and served as Sei^retary of War, by
appointment of President Johnson, from June,
1868, to March, 1869. On retiring from the Cabi-
net he was commissioned a full Major-General
and held various Division and Department com-
mands until 1886, when, on the death of General
Sherman, he succeeded to the command of tlie
Army, with headquarters at Washington.
He was retired under the age limit, Sept. 29.
1895. His present home is in Washington.

SCHOLFIELD, John, jurist, was born in Clark
County, 111. , in 1834 ; acquired the rudiments of
an education in the common schools during boy-
hood, meanwhile gaining some knowledge of the
higher branches through toilsome application to
text-books without a preceptor. At the age of
20 he entered the law scOiool at Louisville, Ky.,
graduating two years later, and beginning prac-
tice at ilarshall. 111. He defrayed his expenses
at the law school from the proceeds o{ the sale of
a small piece of land to which he had fallen heir.
In 1856 he was elected State's Attornej', and, in
1860, was chosen to represent his county in the
Legislature. After serving one term he returned
to his professional career and succeeded in build-
ing up a profitable practice. In lN(i9-70 he repre-
sented Clark and Cumberland Counties in the
( 'on.stitutional Convention, and, in 1870, became
Solicitor for the Vandalia Riiilroad. In 1873 he
was elected to fill the vacancy on the bench of the
Supreme Court of the State for the Middle Grand
Division, caused by the resignation of Judge
Anthony Thornton, and re-elected without oppo-
sition in 1879 and 1888. Died, in office, Feb. 13,
1893. It has been claimed that President Cleve-
land would have tendered him the Chief Justice-
ship of the United .States Supreme Court, had he
not insistently declined to accept the honor.



470



HISTORICAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ILLINOIS.



SCHOOL-HOUSES, EARLY, The primitive
school-houses of Illinois were built of logs, and
were extremely rude, as regards both structure
and furnishing. Indeed, the earliest pioneers
rarelj' erected a special building to be used as a
school-house. Au old smoke-house, an abandoned
dwelling, au old block-house, or the loft or one
end of a settler's cabin not unf requently answered
the purpose, and the church and the court-house
were often made to accommodate the school.
When a school-house, as such, was to be built, the
men of the district gathered at the site selected,
bringing their axes and a few other tools, witli
their ox-teams, and devoted four or five days to
constructing a house into which, perhaps, not a
nail was driven. Trees were cut from the public
lands, and, without hewing, fashioned into a
cabin. Sixteen feet square was usually con-
sidered the proper dimensions. In the walls
were cut two holes, one for a door to admit liglit
and air, and the other for the open fireplace, from
which rose a chimney, usually built of sticks and
mud, on the outside. Danger of fire was averted
by thickly lining the inside of the chimney with
clay mortar. Sometimes, but only with great
labor, stone was substituted for mortar made
from the clay soil. The chimneys were always
wide, seldom less than six feet, and sometimes
extending across one entire end of the building.
The fuel used was wood cut directly from the
forest, frequently in its green state, dragged to
the spot in the form of logs or entire trees to be
cut by the older pupils in lengths suited to the
Avidth of the chimney. Occasionally there was
no chimney, the fire, in some of the most primi-
tive structures, being built on the earth and the
smoke escajiing through a hol6 in the roof. In
such liouses a long board was set up on the wind-
ward side, and shifted from side to side as the
wind varied. Stones or logs answered for
andirons, clapboards served as shovels, and no
one complained of the lack of tongs. Roofs were
made of roughly split clapboards, held in place
by "weight poles"' laid on the boards, and by sup-
ports starting from "eaves poles." Tlie space
between the logs, which constituted the walls of
the building, was filled in with blocks of wood
or "chinking," and the crevices, both exterior
and interior, daubed over with clay mortar, in
which straw was sometimes mixed to increase its
adhesiveness. On one side of the structure one
or two logs were sometimes cut out to allow the
admission of light; and, as glass could not always
be procured, rain and snow were excluded and
light admitted by the use of greased paper. Over



this space a board, attached to the outer wall by
leather hinges, was sometimes suspended to keep
out the storms. The placing of a glass window
in a country school house at Edwardsville, in
1834, was considered an important event. Ordi-
narily the floor was of the natural earth, although
this was sometimes covered with a layer of clay,
firmly packed down. Only the more pretentious
school-houses had "puncheon floors"; i. e., floors
made of split logs roughly hewn. Few had
"ceilings" (so-called), the latter being usually
made of clapboards, sometimes of bark, on which
was spread earth, to keep out the cold. The
seats were also of puncheons (without backs)
supported on four legs made of pieces of poles
inserted through augur holes. No one had a desk,
except the advanced pupils who were learning to
write. For their convenience a broader and
smoother puncheon was fastened into the wall
by wooden pins, in such a way that it would
slope downward toward the pupil, the front being
supported by a brace extending from the wall.
Wlien a pupil was writing he faced the wall.
When he had finished this task, lie "reversed him-
self" and faced the teacher and his schoolmates.
These adjuncts completed the furnishings, with
the exception of a split -bottomed chair for the
teacher (who seldom had a desk) and a pail, or
"piggin," of water, with a gourd for a drinking
cup. Rough and uncouth as these structures
were, they were evidences of public spirit and of
appreciation of the advantages of education.
They were built and maintained by mutual aid
and sacrifice, and. in them, some of the great men
of the State and Nation obtained that primary
training which formed the foundation of their
subse(iueiit careers. (See Education.)

SCHUYLER COUNTY, located in the western
portion of the State, has an area of 430 square
miles, and was named for Gen. Philip Schuyler.
Tlie first American settlers arrived in 1823, and,
among the earliest pioneers, were Calvin Hobart,
William H. Taylor and Orris McCartney. The
covinty was organized from a portion of Pike
County, in 183.5, the first Commissioners being
Thomas Blair, Thomas McKee and Samuel Hor-
ney. The Commissioners appointed to locate the
county-seat, selected a site in the eastern part of
the county about one mile west of the present
village of Pleasant View, to which the name of
Beardstown was given, and where the earliest
court was held. Judge John York Sawyer presid-
ing, with Hart Fellows as Clerk, and Orris Mc-
Cartney, Sheriff. This location, however, proving
unsatisfactory, new Commissioners were ap-



HISTORICAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ILLINOIS.



471



pointed, who, in the early part of 1826, selected
the present site of the city of Rushville, some
live miles west of the point originally chosen.
The new seat of justice was first called Rushton,
in honor of Dr. Benjamin Rush, but the name
was afterwards changed to Rushville. Ephraim
Eggleston was the pioneer of Rushville. The



Online LibraryNewton BatemanHistorical encyclopedia of Illinois → online text (page 98 of 207)