Benjamin Whitman.

Nelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r online

. (page 6 of 192)
Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r → online text (page 6 of 192)
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1812. — The State gave its vote to James
Madison, Dem.-Rep., who was elected.

1816.— James Monroe, Dem.-Rep., 25,009 ;
opposition vote, 7,537. (Monroe elected).

1820. — James Monroe, Dem.-Rep., was
unanimously elected.

1824.— Andrew Jackson, 35,894; John
Quincy Adams, 3,405; Wm. H. Crawford,
4,186; Henry Clay, 1,701. None of the can-
didates receiving a majoritj- of the electoral
votes, the election was thrown into the House
of Representatives of Congress, where Adams
was chosen. All of the above candidates were

1828. — Andrew Jackson, Democrat (elect-
ted), 101,652 ; John Quincy Adams, opposi-
tion, 50,848.

1832. — Andrew Jackson, -Dem. (elected),
90,983; William Wirt, Anti-Masonic, 66,716;
Henry Clay, Anti-Jackson, record not at

1836.— Martin Van Buren, Dem. (elect-
ed), 91,475; William H. Harrison, Anti-
Mas., 87,111.

1840.— William H. Harrison, Whig (elect-
ed), 144,021 ; Martin Van Buren, Dem., 143.-

1844. — James K. Polk, Dem. (elected),
167,245; Henry Clay, Whig, 1G1,8()3 ; James
G. Birnev, Abolitionist, record not at hand.

1848.— Zachary Taylor, Whig (elected),
185,514; Lewis Cass, Dem., 171.998; Martin
Van Buren, Free Soil, 11,263.

1852. — Franklin Pierce, Dem. (elected),
198,534; Winfield Scott, Whig, 179,743;
John P. Hale, Free Soil, 8,800.

1856. — James Buchanan, Dem. (elected),
230,500; John C.Fremont, Republican and
Fusion, 147,447; Millard Fillmore, American
and Fusion, 82,229.

1860. — Abraham Lincoln, Republican
(elected), 268,030; Stephen A. Douglas,
Northern Dem., and Jno. C. Breckenridge,
Southern Dem. (Fusion), 178,871 ; John Bell,
American, 59,673. A portion of Mr. Doug-
las' friends would not enter into the Fusion
arrangement, and cast 16,677 votes.

1864.— Abraham Lincoln, Rep., 296,389:
Geo. B. McClellan, Dem., 276,308.

1868.— Ulvsses S. Grant, Rep. (elected),
342,280; Horatio Seymour, Dem., 313,382.

1872.— Ulvsses S! Grant, Rep. (elected).



349,689 ; Horace Greeley, Liberal Republican
and Democrat, 211,961; James Black, Pro-
hibition, 4,630.

1876.— Rutherford B. Hayes, Rep. (declar-
ed elected), 884,184 ; Samuel J. Tilden, Dem.,
366,204; Peter Cooper, Greenback, 7,204;
Green Clay Smith, Pro., 1,318; James B.
Walker, Anti-Secret Society, 85.

1880.— Tames A. Garfield, Rep. (elected),
444,704; Winfield S. Hancock, Dem., 407,-
428; James B. Weaver, Greenback, 20,668;
Neal Dow, Pro., 1,939; John D. Phelps,
Anti-Masonic, 44.

1884. — Grover Cleveland, Dem. (elected),
392,785; James G. Blaine, Rep., 473,804;
Benjamin F. Butler, Greenback-Labor, 17,002 ;
John P. St. John, Pro., 15,737; Mrs. Belva
A. Lockwood, Equal Rights, 3.

1888. — Benjamin Harrison, Rep. (elect-
ed), 526,091 ; Grover Cleveland, Dem., 446,-
633; Clinton B. Fisk, Pro., 20,947; A. ].
Streeter, Union-Labor, 3,873.

1892.— Grover Cleveland, Dem. (elected),
452,264; Benjamin Harrison, Rep., 516,011;
John Bidwell, Pro., 25,123; James B. Weav-
er, People's, 8,714; Simon Wing, Socialist-
Labor, 808.

Representatives in Congress. — [For a
list of the leading Representatives from Penn-
sylvania in the Congress of the United States,
see U. S. Congress.]

Religious Denominations. — The princi-
pal religious denominations in 1890 were as
follows — the total number of communicants
being 1,726,640, or a percentage to the whole
population of 32.84 :

Adventists 1,952

Baptists 86,620

Brethren 2,350

Catholics (Roman) 559,127

Catholic Apostolic 73

Christadelphians 60

Christians 3,219

Christian Scientists 155

Church of God 9,344

Church of the New Jerusalem (Sweden-

borg'ians) 744

Communists 250

Congreg^ationalists 9,818

Disciples 12,007

Dunkards 16,707

Episcopalians 57,360

Evangelicals 42,379

Friends (Quakers) 13,627

German Evangelical Protestant 12,287

German Evangelical Synod 5,293

Hebrew 8,029

Latter Day Saints 417

Lutherans 219,725

Mennonists 15,330

Methodists 260,388

Moravians 4,308

Presbyterians 219.725

Reformed Church 124,700

Schwenkfeldians 306

Salvation Army 772

Ethical Societies 139

Spiritualists 4,659

Theosophists 25

United Brethren 33,951

Unitarians 1,171

Universalists 2,209

Independent Societies 948

The number of church organizations was
10,175; of church buildings, 9,624; and the
estimated value of church property, $85,-

Royal Government. — The government
established by Penn and perpetuated under
royal control was overthrown in 1776, and,
from that time on, the people have managed
their own affairs (except when checked and
humbugged by the politicians!). .

Railroads. — The railroads of Pennsylvania
are among the most important in the whole
country. The sj'stem owned and controlled
by the Pennsylvania Railroad Company is not
excelled in the world ; and the Reading and
Lehigh Valley systems are only second in ex-
tent, value and usefulness. According to
Cram's Atlas for 1894, Pennsylvania stood
second in the number of miles of railroads in
use of all the States in the Union, Illinois
alone exceeding her. Of the 9,027 miles of
railroad in the State at that date, the system
of the Pennsylvania Railroad Company em-
braced fully one-half, and two-thirds of the
balance were owned or controlled by the
Reading and Lehigh Valley systems.

The following statistics from the reports
of the Internal Revenue Department for 1894
show the vast railroad interests of the State :

Capital $1,927,222,235

Wages paid to employes 99,683,991

Employes 176,228

Revenue and Expenses. — [See Public
Receipts, etc.]

Revolution — American. — It is to the last-
ing honor of Pennsylvania that she was not
only one of the first of the American colonies
to protest against the wrongs of the mother
country, but one of the most patriotic in defence
of liberty and independence. Much of this
was due to the influence of Benjamin Frank-


lin, who was one of the greatest men, if not
the very greatest man, America has produced.
The first Continental Congress met in Phila-
delphia in 1774: Washington was elected
commander-in-chief at the same city in 1775;
the Declaration of Independence was adopted
there in 1776. and the National Flag in 1777.
Pennsylvania's ciiief city was the seat of the >
Colonial government during the entire period 1
of the Revolution, except when it was com- j
pelled by military necessity to move to Lan-
caster and York for brief seasons. The earliest
troops to march to the defence of Boston from
south of the Hudson were from Pennsylvania,
and the Pennsylvania troops were known as
"The First Regiment of the Army of the
United Colonies, commanded by Gen. George
Washington." The victories of Washington
at Trenton and Princeton, in 1776, were chiefly
secured by Pennsylvania troops. During 1777
occurred on Pennsylvania soil the battles of
Brandy wine and Germantown, and the " mas-
sacre of Paoli,'" all in September of that year.
A number of minor engagements took place
about the same time. The British entered
Philadelphia in September, 1777, and evacua- 1
ted it in June, 1778. During the winter of j
1777-78, the American army was encamped at
Valley Forge, on the Schuylkill river above
Philadelphia, where they endured hardships \
that are almost beyond description. When j
the British left Philadelphia they were fol-
lowed by Washington across New Jersey, his [
army consisting of Pennsylvania troops mainly,
with whom he won the famous victory of
Monmouth. Peace with Great Britain came
in the winter of 1782-3. The Revolution was
largely won through the aid of Pennsylvania
officers, soldiers, statesmen and financiers, and
many of the most important events of that
momentous era took place upon her soil. New
England and Virginia have taken most of the
glory of the Revolution to themselves, but it
is none the less true that had it not been for
the efforts of Pennsylvania, the " Keystone of
the arch," the result would have been very

Rivers. — The principal rivers are the Dela-
ware, Susquehanna and Ohio. Of these the
main tributaries are as follows : Delaware —
Schuylkill, Lehigh and Lackawaxen ; Susque-
hanna — North Branch, West Branch and
Juniata ; Ohio — Allegheny, Monongahela and
IBeaver. Of the minor streams, the following

are worthy of special note : Flowing into the
North Branch of the Susquehanna, the Che-
mung, Wyalusing and Lackawanna ; into
the West Branch, the Sinnemahoning, Clear-
field, Buffalo, Pine and Lycoming; into the
main stream of the Susquehanna (below
Northumberland), the Conestoga, Fishing,
Swatara, Conodoquiuet, Codorus and Cone-
wago ; into the Allegheny, the Conewango,
Venango (or French creek). Clarion, Red-
bank and Kiskiminetas ; into the Mononga-
hela, the Youghiogheny and Cheat rivers;
into the Beaver, the Shenango and Mahoning.
The Delaware is navigable from Trenton to
the ocean ; the Susquehanna flows into the
head of Chesapeake bay, which is one of the
great water courses of the country ; and the
Ohio, by its connection with the Mississippi
and other rivers, forms one of the grandest
systems of inland communication to be found
in the entire world.

Rebellions and Riots. — In 1791 Congress
passed an act laying a small excise on distilled
spirits. This was very distasteful to the coun-
ties adjacent to Pittsburg, where the manufac-
ture of whisky was carried on to a consider-
able extent. The citizens generally deter-
mined to oppose the law, and various acts of
violence and insubordination ensued, covering
a period of two or three years. Affairs finally
reached a stage where President Washington
felt it to be his duty to compel an enforce-
ment of the laws. In 1794 he called out the
militia of Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maryland
and New Jersey to the number of 15,000, with
orders to march upon the revolting counties
and put down all resistance to the laws of
Congress. This large force overawed the in-
surrectionists, and peace was promptly re-
stored. The incident is known in history as
"the Whisky Insurrection."


A disturbance on a smaller scale broke out
among the Germans of Lehigh, Berks, North-
ampton and adjoining counties in 1798-9,
which is chiefly interesting from the political
effect it had upon those sections. It was
headed by John Fries, and was directed
against a so-called " house tax " that had been
levied by Congress. Several arrests were
made, but no serious punishment followed.
The agitation connected with this tax is gen-



erally understood to have given the counties
named their Democratic complexion.


In April and May, 1844, occurred the dis-
turbances in Philadelphia which are usually
known as the Native American riots. A bit-
ter feeling, for some cause, had grown up be-
tween a portion of the native born Protestants
of that city and the foreign Catholic element,
which resulted in serious encounters, the loss
of a number of lives and the destruction of
some Catholic church property. The State
militia were called out, and peace was restored
only after several persons had been killed and


One of the most important affairs in its
results that ever happened in the State took
place at Christiana, Lancaster count}-, in 1851.
An attempt was made to restore an escaped
slave to his master, under the Fugitive Slave
Law of Congress, which was resisted with
bloody consequences. This was at the time
when hostility to slavery was steadily increas-
ing in the North, and the " Christiana riot,"
as it became known, had a good deal of influ-
ence in creating the Republican party.

RIOTS OF 1877.
The riots in 1877 grew out of a dispute
between the railroad corporations and their
employes over the wages and hours of labor.
For several days in July of that year nearly
every railroad in the State was obliged to sus-
pend operations. July lOth to the 25th, a
mob held possession of Pittsburg, and the dis-
turbances that ensued led to the death of fifty
persons and the destruction of $5,000,000
worth of property. As usual in such cases,
the militia were ordered out, and matters were
quieted, after a great expenditure of money
and much difficulty.


The latest of the great disturbances in the
State took place at Homestead, near. Pitts-
burg, in 1892. A dispute between the Car-
negie Compan}' and some of its employes led
to an extensive strike. The company pro-
cured the aid of the "Pinkertons," a well-
known detective force, who attempted to se-
cure possession of the works at Homestead by

strategy. The strikers learned of their pur-
pose, and determined to resist it. A severe
fight occurred on July 6th, in which about
twenty persons were killed and twice as many
wounded. The whole military force of the
State was placed upon duty, and succeeded in
so settling matters that the works partially re-
sumed operations in about a month. As in sev-
eral of the instances above mentioned, this trou-
ble had a considerable political effect. Mr. Car-
negie was a leading Republican, and the tend-
ency of the Homestead affair — whether just-
ly or unjustly is not argued here — was to drive
thousands of working men into the ranks of
the Democratic party, and undoubtedly led to
the election of Grover Cleveland for the sec-
ond term as President of the United States.

Richest Counties in the United States.
— According to the United States census of
1890, the six leading counties in the value of
agricultural products are as follows : 1, Lan-
caster county. Pa., $7,657,790 ; 2, St. Law-
rence county, N. Y., $6,054,160; 3, Chester
county, Pa., $5,863,800 ; 4, Worcester county,
Mass., $5,489,430; 5, Bucks county. Pa.,
$5,411,370 ; 6, Colusa county, Cal., $5,357,350.
Lancaster has long been known as the richest
farming county in America. The above figures
do not refer to the value of the land, but give
the value of the yearly farming product.
Lncaster leads by great odds in the value of
farm lands, although it is only one-third as
large as St. Lawrence county, N. Y.

Seal of the State. — An authentic engrav-
ing of the seal of the State is printed on another
page of this book.

State Buildings. — [See list of Public

Slavery Abolished. — As in most or all of
the Colonies, slavery at one period was legal
in Pennsylvania. The act for the gradual
abolishment of slavery passed the Assembly
in March, 1780. Every person in bondage at
the time was continued in slavery for a cer-
tain period, and the children of slaves became
free at a certain age. The first important
proposition in Congress to limit slavery in the
territories owned by the United States was
offered by David Wilmot, a Pennsylvania
representative, in 1840, and the first national
convention of the Republican party was held
in Pittsburg in 1856.

Summer Resorts. — The best-known sum-
mer and health resorts are at Bedford, Cres-



son, Minnequa, Cambridge and Saegertown.
The mineral springs at Bedford have been cel-
ebrated for upwards of a century, and are
among the most valuable knov\'n. Forty or
fifty years ago they were the most popular in
the Union, being a famous resort for politi-
cians of national fame. The water is not sur-
passed by any of a mineral character in any
part of the world.

State Officers.— [ See Executive Officers. ]
Salaries of State Officers. — The salaries
and fees attached to some of the principal ex-
ecutive offices were as follows in 1894:

(per year). Fees, etc.

Governor $10,000

Lieutenant-Governor 5,000

Sec'yof the Commonwealth.... 4,000 $13,067

Deputy Secretary 2,500

Auditor General 4,000 525

State Treasurer 5,000 525

Attorney General 3,500 7,500

Deputy Attorney General 4,000

Insurance Commissioner 3,0C0 4,370

Dep. Insurance Commissioner 1,800

Secretary of Internal Affairs 4,000

Dep. Sec'y of Internal Affairs 2,300

Supt. of Public Instruction 4,000

Two Deputies (each) 1,800

Adjutant General 2,500

State Librarian 2,500

First Assistant Librarian 1,800

Superintendent of Banking- 4,000

Deputy Supt. of Banking 1,400

Factory Inspector 3,oro

Sec'}' Board of Agriculture. . . . 2,500

Dairy and Food Commissioner 2,000

Supt. of Public Printing 1,600

Stone. — The State contains nearly all the
ornamental and building stones in general use,
but slate, limestone and sandstone are the
leading products in this direction. Slate is
procured in great quantities on the south side
of the Kittatinny range, in Lehigh and North-
ampton counties, and the other stones named
are distributed generally over the State. A fine
variety of marble is occasionally found, and the
greenstone, extensively used in building in
some of the eastern cities, belongs almost ex-
clusively to Pennsylvania.

Senators froni Pennsylvania in U. S.
Congress. — | .See U. S. Senators.]

School System. — The public-school sys-
tem of Pennsylvania is properly regarded as
one of the best in the Union. It was a cardinal
principle of William Penn,in establishing his
colony, that a good education should be open to
every child born within its limits. One of the

earliest provisions made by the State was for an
academy in every county. When the common-
school idea came into vogue, it was eagerly
embraced by the old-time Governors, who
lost no opportunity for recommending it to
the Legislature. The first law on the subject
was passed during the administration of Gov-
ernor Wolf, and this was improved, at various
times, by the efforts of Governors Ritner,
Packer, and others, aided bj- such men as
Thaddeus Stevens, Thomas II. Burrowes and
Henry L. Dieffenbach. A more complete ac-
count of the system than can be given here
will be found in the General History of Erie
County, and a list of the State Normal Schools
is given elsewhere. The following statistics,
from the State reports for 1893, are of value
in this connection :

Number of school districts. .

Number of schools

Number of male teachers.. .
Number of female teachers.



Average salaries of male teachers per

month 143 94

Average salaries of female teachers

I per month 33 04

1 Average length of school term in

months 8.10

Number of pupils 994,407

Cost of tuition for the year $8,468,437

The estimated value of the school property in
some of the counties and towns in northwestern
Pennsylvania in the same year was as follows :
Counties (exclusive of cities)— Crawford, $231,400;
Erie, $268,554 ; Venango, $193,500 ; Warren, $271,-
550. Cities and towns— Bradford, $100,000 ; Corry,
$52,304 ; Erie. $600,000 ; Meadville, $150,000 : Oil
City, $112,500 ; Titusville, $100,000.

Triangle. — [For an account of the pur-
chase of the Triangle, embracing Presque
Isle Bay and the northern portion of Erie
county, see the General History of said

Timber. — Probably no portion of the world
was more densely covered with timber than
Pennsylvania when operjed to white set-
tlement. Every kind of timber that grows in
the temperate zone was found in the State,
including among the principal varieties pine,
'\ hemlock, oak, hickory, walnut, ash, cucumber
— in fact, almost any sort that can be named.
Unfortunately for the welfare of the State,
the timber has been recklessly destroyed, and
' but few large bodies remain, most of these
j being at remote points. Suggestions have
I been made in favor of a general system of tree



propagation, and there is not much doubt that
some day the mountains and hillsides will
again be covered with valuable timber, under
the care of the State. Measures have also been
adopted that will eventually lead to a wider
cultivation of trees along the highways and
upon the banks of the streams.

Universities and Colleges. — Xo State in
the Union has given more attention to the
higher education of its citizens than Pennsyl-
vania. Aside from her splendid system of
Public Schools and Academies, some of the
largest and best Colleges and Universities in
the world are located within her boundaries.
Among the most widely known are the fol-
lowing :

University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

Western University of Pennsylvania, Pitts-

Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia.

Girard College for Orphans, Philadelphia.

Lehigh University, Bethlehem.

Alleghenj- College, Meadville.

State College, Centre county.

Dickinson College, Carlisle.

Haverford College, near Philadelphia.

Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster.

St. Vincent's, near Latrobe.

Villa Nova, near Philadelphia.

Swarthmore College, Delaware county.

Lafayette College, Easton.

Pennsylvania College, Gettysburg.

Washington and Jefferson College, Can-

Bucknell University, Lewisburg.

Western Theological Seminary, Allegheny.

Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr.

These are but a few of the leading educa-
tional institutions of the State, nearly every
county containing one or more that are only
second to the above-named in reputation.

United States Constitution. — As previ- |
ously mentioned, the convention which drafted I
the Constitution of the United States was held |
in Philadelphia. The State was the second
one to ratify this invaluable document, little
Delaware, under Pennsylvania influence, hav-
ing been the first. The ratification by Dela-
ware was December 7, 1787, and by Pennsyl-
vania December 12th of the same year. The
delegation from Pennsylvania who helped
to frame and who signed the Constitution of
the United States were : Benjamin Franklin,
Thomas Mifflin, Thomas Fitzsimmons, James

Wilson, Robert Morris, George Clymer, Jared
Ingersoll, Gouverneur Morris.

United States Officers — Principal ones
from Pennsylvania. — Below is a list of the
persons from Pennsj'lvania who have held
leading positions in the civil service of the
United States Government at Washington :


Thomas Mifflin Nov. 3,17>>3

Arthur St. Clair Feb. 2,1787


Term of


James Buchanan 1857-1861

George M. Dallas 184A-1849


Timothy Pickering 179S-1800

James Buchanan 1845-1849

Jeremiah S. Black 1860-1861


Albert Gallatin 1801-1814

Alexander J. Dallas 1814-1817

Richard Rush 1825-1829

Samuel D. Ingham 1829-1831

William J. Duane 1833

Walter Forward 1841-1843

William M . Meredith 1849-1850


Timothy Pickering 1795

James M. Porter 1843-1844

William Wilkins 1844-1845

Simon Cameron 1861-1862

Edwin M. Stanton 1862-1868

J. Donald Cameron 1876-1877


William Jones 1813-1814

Adolph E. Borie 1869


T. M. T. McKennan 1850


Timothy Pickering 1791-1795

James Campbell 1853-1857

John Wanamaker 1889-1893


William Bradford 1794-1795

Richard Rush 1814-1817

Henry D. Gilpin 1840-1841

Jeremiah S. Black 1857-1860

Edwin M. Stanton 1860-1861

Wayne MacVeagh 1881

Benjamin H. Brewster 1881-1885



James Wilson 1789-1798

Henry Baldwin 1830-1846

Robert C. Grier 1846-1870

William Strong 1870-1880

George Shiras 1892


William Bingham 1797

James Ross 1797-1799

Andrew Gregg 1809


F. A. Muhlenberg 1789-1791

F. A. Muhlenberg 1793-1795

Galusha A. Grow 1861-1863

Samuel J. Randall 1876-1881


Joseph Casey 1863-1870

United States Senators. — The Senators
in the Congress of the United States from
Pennsylvania have been as follows :

William Maclay 1789-1791

Robert Morris 1789-1795

Albert Gallatin 1793-1794

James Ross 1794-1803

William Bingham 1795-1801

John P. G. Muhlenberg 1801

George Logan 1801-1807

Samuel Maclay 1803-1808

Andrew Gregg 1807-1813

Michael Leib 1808-1814

Abner Leacock 1813-1819

Jonathan Roberts 1814-1821

Walter Lowrie 1819-1825

William Findlay 1821-1827

William Marks 1825-1831

Isaac D. Barnard 1827-1831

George Mifflin Dallas 1831-1833

William Wilkins 1831-1834

Samuel McKean 1833-1839

James Buchanan 1834-1845

Daniel Sturgeon 1839-1851

Simon Cameron 1845-1849

Online LibraryBenjamin WhitmanNelson's biographical dictionary and historical reference book of Erie County, Pennsylvania : containing a condensed history of Pennsylvania, of Erie County, and of the several cities, boroughs and townships in the county also portraits and biographies of the governor's since 1790, and of numerous r → online text (page 6 of 192)