T. H. (Timothy Horton) Ball.

The lake of the red cedars ; or, will it live? Thirty years in Lake online

. (page 10 of 19)
Online LibraryT. H. (Timothy Horton) BallThe lake of the red cedars ; or, will it live? Thirty years in Lake → online text (page 10 of 19)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

ten in that far away province of the British
queen will this spot be, for here reposes thy
loved father's dust." And true to the instincts
of that heart, she, the youngest daughter, has
written here to inquire about the resting place
of that dust. Where it reposes, in the Crown
Point cemetery, Judge Weatherbe of Halifax
ought to erect a monument.

We return to the Institute life. Four members
of the Dinwidclie family were students at the
Institute. The sleigh rides to Plum Grove and
the night when one party was lost upon the
then open prairie will not be forgotten easily
by some members of that party of students and
teachers. The Plum Grove home was ever a
delightful place to which to go.


The Pierian Society connected with the Insti-
tute and its Paper the Castalian, the first literary
paper in the county, formed a part of this
educational enterprise which was itself a part
of Baptist labor in the county of Lake. Of the
influence, of the result of all, on minds and
hearts, of the culture and discipline acquired in
the rhetorical and forensic exercises of the
Society, the title page question again returns :

Will it live ?

That endeavors to carry forward an educa-
tional enterprise interfered very much with
some forms of pastoral labor, especially with
pastoral visits so called, will be supposed ; yet
such pastoral work as the small church required
was constantly performed. Sometimes the
small marriage party would come to the home
of the pastor, and the parlor would soon be in
readiness for the pleasant ceremony. At other
times, whether the occasions were those of joy
or sorrow, in any part of Lake county, the pas-
tor would visit the homes of his friends.

Those were intensely busy years. They soon
passed. Change was coming at Cedar Lake.

Judge Ball was rapidly declining.

He had enjoyed the baptismal occasions at
Cedar Lake. He had enjoyed very much his
visits at Crown Point, where he had now a son,
a daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren to



welcome him. He had seen the commence-
ment of the Institute enterprise and rejoiced in
its success. He was chosen an honorary mem-
ber of the Pierian Society, Schuyler Colfax
accepting a similar appointment. One of his
later visits at Crown Point was when the music
pupils in the charge of Mrs. Cornell gave the
cantata of Esther ; but he only remained a few
moments in the meeting house, fond as he had
been of music, and returned to the home of his

He had been for almost thirty years engaged
in Sabbath school work, was the oldest super-
intendent in the county, and was the first pres-
ident of the county organization organized Sep-
tember 16, 1865.

The published proceedings of the county
Sabbath School Convention in August, 1867,
contain the following paragraph.

"The President, H. Ball, made a few con-
gratulatory and farewell remarks at the opening
of the morning exercises, but being unable to
preside, that duty devolved upon the Yice
President, Kev. E. B. Young." The Sabbath
School demonstration on that twenty-first of
August exceeded what had ever been in the
county before. It was the last appearance
among the Sabbath school workers of one who
had been identified with their interests from


the first, who had attended so many annual
gatherings. The last words in behalf of that
cause were uttered. His tongue was soon to
cleave to the roof of his mouth, his right hand
was soon to lose its cunning. He scarcely left
his Cedar Lake home after that time. He had
taken a deep interest in national affairs during
the years of conflict and transition and had
taken and read many leading periodicals ; but
now he ceased to read much, or to take an
interest in passing events, beyond the welfare
of his remaining children. In the spring of
1868 his son brought him from the old Holyoke
home some Connecticut river shad which seemed
to recall the past. In the summer Job Wor-
thington of Massachusetts made him a visit ;
and then his youngest and only remaining
brother Edwin H. Ball of Holyoke ; and before
the latter returned, on the thirteenth of Octo-
ber, 1868, he died. His thirty years of effort
for the good of the community were ended.
He had promoted, as opportunity was offered,
the growth of churches, the advance of Sunday
schools, of select schools, and of public schools ;
he had promoted the advance of the temperance
cause ; he had been the first presiding officer
in other useful organizations ; he had been
clerk and moderator of the N. I. Baptist Asso-
ciation ; he had been a trustee of Franklin Col-


lege. His position as Judge of the Probate
Court he had resigned.

He was the first president of the Lake County
Agricultural Society, and continued in that posi-
tion for six years.

The first temperance society of the county, in
1841, owed its origin to the efforts of himself
and Elder Warriner in connection with the
influence and efforts of Solon Robinson. He
was a member of the first lodge of Good Tem-
plars organized in December, 1855. He was
the Master for the first four years of the first
masonic lodge of the county. He was the first
and only clerk of the Cedar Lake church.

During his life in Vermont as a law student
and elsewhere in professional life, having been
for fourteen years in active life in the state of
Georgia, from 1820 to 1834, he had gained a
large experience, his acquaintances having been
among the most distinguished men in those two
states ; and the benefit of this experience and
of a knowledge of the world gained by ming-
ling with the fashionable, the wealthy, and the
influential, the young persons at Cedar Lake
richly shared. Whatever others may have done
in this county for the building up of good in-
stitutions, he certainly did something ; and he
did his work, whatever may have been his frail-
ties and its imperfections, he did his work in


the spirit in which only those labor who every
day, in their quiet homes, lift up their hearts
and voices to the Eternal Throne.

And when he died the Baptist cause in Lake
lost a supporter and a friend. Its decline, al-
most from that hour, began.

'The following notice of the death of one
more of the early settlers at the lake, of one
who became a Baptist in her Western home,
comes properly here in the order of time. It
is taken from the Castalian, then published by
the Crown Point Institute. The year is 1869.

"Died on Friday, Dec. 10,
Mrs. Lucy Taylor, aged seventy-seven years.

Sister Taylor, known among her acquaint-
ances as Aunt Lucy, was born in Hoosack,
Vermont, Aug. 12, 1792. She spent a portion
of life in Pennsylvania, came in early times
into Indiana, and in 1835 or 1836 settled at
Cedar Lake, Lake county, Indiana. She mar-
ried, in comparative youth, Adonijah Taylor,
and was the mother of eight children. She
was a dutiful and affectionate wife and mother,
making home pleasant by her cheerfulness and

She was baptized in 1850, by that devoted
pastor so well known and beloved in Northern
Indiana, Elder Thomas Hunt, who years ago
finished up his earthly toil ; and she became a


member of the Cedar Lake Baptist church.
She maintained a consistent Christian walk,
and was well spoken of by others, esteemed,
and respected. She was the last but one of the
early settlers remaining around Cedar Lake,
and seemed to become lonely, ready to go to
rest and join the innumerable company who
have gone before into Paradise."

Mrs. Taylor must have been in early life a
very pleasant, lovely Vermont girl. Amid some
trials she retained her pleasantness through a
long life.

One of her sons was the first person baptized
in Lake county. Two sons and one daughter
are yet living in Lake, and among their children
are many pleasant daughters. Fittingly may
they imitate the virtues of their grand-mother.

For one more year after the death of Judge
Ball Mrs. J. A. H. Ball, James H., and Mary
Jane Ball, remained at their home ; and Judge
Woodard came with his family from Alabama
in the early winter of 1868 and remained with
them at Cedar Lake. Thus the growing lone-
liness of that home was in part relieved. The
two Crown Point children enjoyed, in the sum-
mer of 1869, pleasant visits at their grand-
mother's with their, now four, Southern cousins,
Georgie sometimes taking down with her her
particular friend young Ella Barber. But this


was the last season for such enjoyment at Cedar

There was one more small family gathering,
one more hour of quiet joy. Miss Mary Jane
Ball was married, December 16, 1869, to Dr.
A. S. Cutler. It was the second and the last
bridal assembly. One had been in the old
home and one in the new. Two deaths had
been at the old home and three at the new.
The place was even now sold. It was soon
delivered up to strangers, and Baptist life
ended at the Lake of the Ked Cedars.

The following expression of the feelings of
one who had written to an Agawam cousin,

" In the wilds of the West no lake is so bright
As the Lake of Red Cedars. Good bye and Good night. 11

may form for this chapter a fitting close.

(The above two lines were written in imita-
tion of those well known lines,

" In all the wide world there's no valley so sweet
As the vale in whose bosom the bright waters meet.'")


To-morrow that loved spot we last called home

Into the hands of strangers passes; I

Cannot but feel sad, although we freely

Gave it up, freely signed the title deeds.

For many years have clustered round that spot

The strong home feelings. A true home is dear

On earth, well called our brightest type of heaven.


Farewell to thee, thou home. No more within
Thy rooms, the scenes of pleasant intercourse
So long; vocal so oft with prayer and praise;
Desecrated never yet by midnight
Noisy revels;— no more shall we repose,
Or rest, or enter, but as stranger guests.
Thy present owners will not know thy full
And blessed memories. Farewell to all
Those rooms, and quiet nooks, and last of all
To those thrice hallowed by the peaceful death
Of dear ones; we cannot forget that there
Sweet Henrie, and gentle brother Charlie,
And an aged father, loved and honored,
Looked their last upon us; and hallowed too
By sister Mary's joyous bridal hour,
In the bright hues of which so late we met.
Hallowed by grief so great and joy so pure,
How can we thee forget, home of the past!
Farewell to thee, bright grove. How many times
Long years ago into thy shade I came,
Laying the sharp scythe by to rest from toil,
And drink from that cool spring, now and for years
Vanished beneath the surface. And how fair
Those youthful fancies and romantic thoughts,
Viewing thy possibilities for rare
Wild beauty, planning then to make thee mine,
Thinking how loved and gentle ones would come
And sportive children play amid thy shades,
And laugh along thy flowing waters there.
And they did come; jungle and dell they came,
Almost beyond my fairest youthful thoughts
They came, and wandered in that very spot,
And in their youth and joy and freshness they
Rejoiced amid thy beauty, where, from toil
Reposing, I in boyhood built air castles.
Strange that so many of my early dreams,
My day dreams, ever fair, have been so well



Accomplished! But these and I, as owners
Of the soil, as having any heirship
Left in thee, amid thy summer foliage,
Or through thy hazel mazes, or in dell
So bright and sunny, or in jungle
Dense and dark, where earliest spring flowers grew,
Will roam, and play, and dream no more. And so
Farewell. Farewell to all. Tis winter now;
But I have known thine early, glad, spring freshness;
I know thy summer beauty; and I know
Thy autumn richness; I know thee in all
Seasons well. Thou art the last of those rich
Acres broad, last of the three plantations
Lying near to thy clear waters, glorious
Lake of the Red Cedars, from out our hands
To pass. The three have gone to strangers now
And thus all my ancestral homes of old
Have all, save one, passed, one by one, to hands
Of others. Our halls are held by strangers.
There was no English law to hold and keep
Them for the first-born, and they passed; passed not
Because they must, but as each generation
Chose. We are Americans, and so we
Love to change and roam, and open pathways
For the feet of othefs; and all preferred,
Though pleasant, fair, and lovely all these homes
Have been, each has preferred, all to go forth
And find new seats, and found new homes for them
And for their children. This is our custom,
If not Anglo-Saxon law; and, thus far,
Peace, and love, and hope seem to go with us.
And therefore, last of all the Cedar Lake
Possessions, spot my father last called home,
Meadows, fields and woodlands, orchard, house,
Flowers, fruits, jungle and dell, and crystal well,
Farewell, a hopeful, yet a long farewell. t
January 4, 1870. T. H. B.'



First among these memorials may be placed
the brief records of a fifth Baptist church in
Lake county, a church which had no real con-
nection with the early laborers around Cedar


A few devoted laborers endeavored to build
up Baptist interests at what is now the town of
Hobart. At present it is represented relig-
iously by Catholics, Lutherans, Methodists,
Band members, and what are called Unitarians.
But some twenty-five years ago, Elder Bartlett,
a zealous free mission Baptist, preached there
regularly and organized a free mission church.
Elder Kennedy also preached in the neighbor-
hood. Some of the Banks family were active
members of this church. It probably numbered
some twenty members, and was disbanded sev-
eral years ago.

One of its members, Miss Elisabeth Hodson,
came to Crown Point, and, in later years, was
connected with Mrs. Ball in church and Sunday


school work, being ever a firm and efficient
friend. She and Mrs. S. Robinson, formerly
mentioned, were the only women from Lake
county in the service of the Christian Commis-
sion, in the dark years of suffering. She was
in the hospitals at Memphis. She has since
spent some time as governess in the Soldier's
Orphan Home at Knightstown, Indiana.

She has lately gone to Kansas, leaving a
large vacancy at Crown Point.

A sixth organization in the county, slightly
connected with the Cedar Lake center, was

The Eagle Creek Church,

"Saturday, Feb. 1, 1862.
Met * * at the school house * * * for the
purpose of organizing a regular Baptist church.
The following named brethren and sisters re-
solved themselves into a church in Gospel
order, adopting the articles of faith and
covenant found in the Church Manual, to
be known by the name of the First Bap-
tist church of Eagle Creek, Lake county, Indi-
ana.' 1 Twelve names follow, among them
the name of Elder G. F. Bray ton, who
became the first pastor. On the next day


four were baptized and added to this new
church. On the following Sabbath twelve oth-
ers were baptized. Baptisms continued until
May 4th when twenty-eight had been baptized,
making in all forty-four baptisms, and fifty-six
meinber-s for the Eagle Creek church. Eight
others were received by experience or letter, so
that before four months had passed the church
numbered sixty-four members. The ingather-
ing was rapid ; the young men went into the
army ; the pastor went as chaplain ; growth
ceased. ' Changes in population also took place
and letters of dismission were given to quite a
number. The young men were in that Indiana
regiment known as the u Bloody Ninth," and
some of them returned no more.
. Kev. T. H. Ball, in 1864, and Kev. G. W.
Lewis, in 1866, preached in the bounds of this
church ; but too many changes had taken place
to render it desirable to keep up a church

The following is the last record.

"Septr. 6th, 1868.

Eagle Creek Baptist church dissolved this
day by mutual consent of members present, and
letters granted to the few remaining members."
Eleven names are there attached.

Signed, "T. EL Ball, Moderator.
M. J. Dinwiddie, Clerk."


Four of the last eleven members of this
church still remain in the county.

Lewis F. Warriner.

The oldest of the children of Lewis Warriner
that came to Lake county, having an older
brother, Sylvester Warriner, a jeweller in Lou-
isville, Kentucky, Lewis F. Warriner was almost
a young man when he left the Connecticut val-
ley. He was quick at a repartee, very genial
and sociable, intelligent, and a pleasant com-
panion and friend. He spent the summer of
1840 as a member of the Ball family, and with
him the children there became very intimate.
He returned again to his father's home. In
the summer of 1845 a fatal sickness came upon
him. Exposures of different kinds had enabled
disease to lay firmly hold upon a constitution
which had seemed to be quite vigorous and
robust. The fever ran its course in about
twelve days. Some members of the family on
the west side of the lake were present during
his last night on earth, and to the two oldest of
those seven children, the brother and sister
who had that spring become church members,
it was a solemn night. They had left their
home near nightfall, to visit their dying friend,
had passed around the head of the lake, and a


dark and cloudy night of midsummer coining
on, among the thick foliage of the east side
woods they for the first time in their lives were
lost. Wandering for some time in that thick
darkness, their horse not knowing where they
wished to go, pressing onward by instinct rather
than by knowledge, they at length saw a light.
They hastened towards it, and it proved to be
the light from the sick room which they sought.
It was ascertained that night, perhaps by some
before, that their friend had a hope in their
own Saviour, although he had never publicly
professed faith in Christ. This to his father
and to them' was joyful news in a sad hour and-
in a trying time. Along in the night the
brother read to his dying friend, who was some
six years older than himself, but with whom
notwithstanding the difference of age he had
been an intimate associate, the fifteenth chapter
of Corinthians, which speaks of the resurrection
of the dead, and then all present who were
awake knelt in prayer around the bedside of
the sufferer. All was done that could be done
to save life, but active remedies had no effect.
The next morning the brother and sister ex-
changed with their dear friend the last good
byes, and returned to their home. At six in
the evening death came, and one more, one of
the noble and promising of that community.


was numbered with those who had passed the
river. Forgotten upon earth there is good rea-
son to hope that, as a living ransomed soul, he
is resting and rejoicing in Paradise. Death
had never seemed to come so near to his young
friend before. It was his first great loss.
Since then, one after another, many dear ones
have passed away from earth.

Ann Belshaw.

One of the young members of the Cedar
Lake Church was a fair-haired girl, of English
birth, baptized by Elder Hastings on Rolling
Prairie when eleven years of age, and rinding
her last earthly home at the southern limit of
Lake Prairie. She visited occasionally at the
Cedar Lake home, where also she and her
mother attended the church meetings. With
her, the two on horseback, their horses passing
over the beds of lovely flowers, when the prai-
rie between their two homes was open and
almost pathless, the oldest son of the Cedar
Lake family first crossed that nine miles of per-
fectly open, rolling, grassy prairie. It was a
ride to be through life remembered. Every-
thing was beautiful and new and fresh, as the
sunshine of that summer afternoon gilded the
face of nature ; and with such a girl for a


companion, although miles away from human
habitations or beings, one could not feel lonely.
She was a noble-hearted, fair looking, Chris-
tian girl, graceful on horseback, a sweet singer,
a charming friend. In her bright girlhood she
passed away from earth. In a little family
burial place, near her last home, her dust re-

Hearts differ. There was one to whom she
was said to have been engaged in marriage,
who came from Oregon and found her not on
earth ; and who, in a few weeks after he knew
of her death, sought in marriage the hand of
another Lake Prairie girl. And there was one,
who had learned to love her, to whom after her
departure earth seemed very, very lone, and
who for some seven years thereafter proffered
no love to woman.

The following tribute to her memory, the
first of many such notices written by the same
hand, was published in the Indiana Messenger.
''Cedar Lake, July 15, 1816.

Died — On Sunday, 21st June, 18-16, at the
residence of her father, in Lake county, Ind.,
Ann, the youngest daughter of George and
Elizabeth Belshaw, aged eighteen years.

The deceased was born in England A. D.
1828. In early childhood, with the other mem-
bers of her father's family, she crossed the


ocean and found a home in America. At the
early age of eleven she made a public pro-
fession of the religion of the Bible, was bap-
tized by Elder A. Hastings, and united with
the Rolling Prairie Baptist church. Speaking
of herself at the time, she said :

She never found substantial joys
Until she heard her Saviour's voice.

And when on her death-bed, referring to that
time, she said, that young as she was, it was a
blessed time for her, and she had never re-
pented it. In June, 1845, she united by letter
with the Cedar Lake church, of which she con-
tinued a member until her death. She was
unwell for nearly six months, alternately bet-
ter and worse. * * * Her disease was pain-
ful, her mouth and throat being so cankered as
at times to prevent her from holding any con-
versation ; at other times she could not speak
so freely as she wished.

Thus was removed from among us one whose
more than ordinary natural grace, amiable qual-
ities, and Christian virtues, made her indeed
the joy of her connections and the delight of
many hearts.


We say that she is dead, but what is death?
Is it to cease to be forevermore ?


When the low, sad parting words are given,

Beside the bed of death, is that indeed

The last farewell ? And when that mournful look

From tearful eyes, so fixed and so prolonged,

Falls on the cold, inanimate clay

That lately was with life so radiant,

Is it all hopeless, ever more to view

That form, which the damp earth will soon receive?

Oh no — love, praise and glory give, to Him,

The High and Holy One, that we are not

Thus comfortless.

A revelation has to us been made

From which we learn the soul will ever be ;

Will live and act to all eternity.

That death is but its separation from

The mortal frame, the frame that turns to dust;

And still again we learn, that tho 1 in dust,

TMs will be brought to life to die no more.

A pleasant and a lovely one

Has passed from earth away;
On her the spoiler set his seal,

She might not, could not stay;
Away to realms of glory bright,
The gentle spirit took its flight.

Like a fair, fresh, opening rose bud,
Plucked from its parent stem,

Was from its earthly house removed,
This precious, priceless gem;

Called by a Father kind, away,

To shine in realms of endless day.

Sweet was the music, when she here

Sang Zion's sacred songs;
But now ecstatic it must be,

'Mid the angelic throngs,


As she beholds her Saviour's face,
And sings of all his matchless grace.

She is a spirit, then is free

From earthly pain and woe;
Yet all her pleasures and rich joys

We do not, cannot know;
But learn that all is peace and love
In that bright, happy world above.

Gentle sister, we shall never

In life behold thee more;
For thy short pilgrimage is done;

Thou hast reached Canaan's shore,
Yet dost thou not with angels come
To view thy friends within thy home ?

Thy home! ah, that is heaven now,
Though where, we do not know;

Nor whether thou art ever near
Thy loved ones here below ;

We do but know that angels bright

Minister to heirs of light.

Stern death for thee had lost its sting,

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 10 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19

Online LibraryT. H. (Timothy Horton) BallThe lake of the red cedars ; or, will it live? Thirty years in Lake → online text (page 10 of 19)