William Henry Perrin.

History of Jefferson County, Illinois online

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in time to prevent the outrageous schemes
from being carried out, and from involving

the settlers in war. On October 27, 1795,
the treaty between the United States and
Spain was signed, whereby the free navi-
gation of the jyiississippi was secured.

No sooner had the treaty of 1795 beau
ratified, than settlements began to pour
rapidly into the West. The great event
of the year 1796 was the occupation of
tluit part of the Northwest including
Michigan, which was this year, under the
provisions of the treaty, evacuated by the
British forces. The United States, owing
to certain conditions, did not feel justified
in addressing the authorities in Canada
in relation to Detroit and other frontier
posts. When at last the British author-
ities were called to give them up, they
at once complied, and General Wayne,
who had done so much to preserve the
frontier settlements, and who, before
the year's close, sickened and died near
Erie, transferred his headquarters to the
neighborhood of the lakes, where a coun-
ty named after him was formed, which
included the northwest of Ohio, all of
Michigan, and the northeast of Indiana.
During this same year settlements were
formed at the present City of Chillicothe,
along the Miami from MiddJetown to Piqua,
wliile in the more distant West, settlers
and speculators began to appear in great
numbers. In Sc])tember, the City of
Cleveland was laid out, and during the
summer and autumn, Samuel Jackson
and Jonathan Sharpless erected the first
manufactory of paper — the " Redstone
Paper Mill " — in the West. St. Louis con-
tained some seventy houses, and Detroit
over three hundred, and along the river,
contiguous to it, were more than three
thousand inhabitants, mostly French Can-



adifins, lndi;iiis and lialf-breeds, scarcely
any Americans venturing yet into that
part of tlie Nortiivvest.

Tiie election of representatives for the
Territory had taken place, and on the 4th
of February, 1799, they convened at Lo-
santiville — now known as Cincinnati, hav-
ing been named so by Gov. St. Clair, and
considered the capital of the Territory — to
nominate pei'sons from whom the mem-
bers of the legislature were to be chosen
in accordance with a previous ordinance.
These nominations being made, the Assem-
bly adjourned until the 16th of the follow-
ing September. From those named, the
President selected as members of the
council, Henry Vandenburg, of Vincennes,
Robert Oliver, of Marietta, James Findlay
and Jacob Burnett, of Cincinnati, and
David Vance, of Vanceville. On the 16th
of September the Territorial Legislature
met, and on the 24th the two houses were
duly organized, Henry Vandenburg being
elected President of the Council.

The message of Gov. St. Clair was ad-
dressed to the Legislature September 20h,
and on October 13th that body elected as
a delegate to Congress, Gen. "Wm. Henry
Harrison, who received eleven of the votes
cast, being a majority of one over his op-
])onent, Arthur St. Clair, son of Gen. St.

The whole number of acts passed at this
session, and approved by the Governor,
were thirty-seven — eleven others were
passed, but received his veto. The most
important of those passed, related to the
militia, to the administration, and to taxa-
tion. On the 19th of December, this pro-
tracted session of the first Legislature in
the AVest was closed, and on the 30th

of December, the President nominated
Charles "Willing Bryd to the office of Sec-
retary of the Territory vice Wm. Henry
Harrison, elected to Congress. The Sen-
ate confirmed his nomination the next day.


The increased emigration to the jS^orth-
west, the extent of the domain, and the lu-
convenient modes of travel, made it very
difficult to conduct the ordinary operations
of government, and rendered the efficient
action of courts almost impossible. To
remedy this, it was deemed advisable to
divide the territory for civil purposes.
Congress, in 1800, appointed a committee
to examine the question and report some
means for its solution. This committee,
on the 3d of March, reported that:

" In the three western countries, there
has been but one court having cognizance
of crimes, in five years, and the immunity
which offenders experience attracts, as to
an asylum, the most vile and abandoned
criminals, and at the same time deters
useful citizens from making settlements in
such society. The extreme necessity of
judiciary attention and assistance is ex-
perienced in civil as well as in criminal
cases. * * * * To minister a remedy
to these and other evils, it occurs to this
committee that it is expedient that a divis-
ion of said territory into two distinct and
separate governments should be made: and
that such division be made by a line be-
ginnino' at the mouth of the Great Miami
River, running directly north until it in-
tersects tlie boundary between the United
States and Canada."

The report was accepted by Congress,
and, in accordance with its suggestions,
that body passed an act extinguishing the


Northwest Territory, which act was ap-
proved May 7tli. Among its provisions
were these:

"That from and after Jnly -itli next, all
that part of the territory of tiie United
States, northwest of the Ohio River, which
lies to the westward of a line beginning at
a foiiit on the Ohio, opposite to the month
of the Kentncky River, and running thence
to Fort Recovery, and tlience north until
it shall intersect the territorial line be-
tween the United States and Canada, shall,
for the purpose of temporary government,
constituteaseparate territory, and be called
the Indiana Territory."

After providing for the exercise' of the
civil and criminal powers of the Territories,
and other provisions, the act further pro-

" That until it shall otherwise be ordered
by the Legislatures of the said Territories,
respectively, Chillicothe on the Scioto
River shall be the seat of government of
the Territory of the United States north-
west of the Ohio River; and that St. Vin-
cennes on the "Wabash River shall be the
seat of government for the Indiana Terri-

Gen. Wm. Henry Harrison was appoint-
ed Governor of the Indiana Territory, and
entered upon his duties about a year later.
Connecticut also about this time released
her claims to the reserve, and in March a
law was passed accepting this cession.
Settlements had been made upon thirty-
five of the townships in the reserve, mills
had been built, and seven hundred miles of
road cut in various directions. On the 3d
of November, the General Assembly met
at Chillicothe. Near the close of the year,
the first missionary of the Connecticut

Reserve came, who found no township con-
taining more than eleven families. It was
upon the first of October that the secret
treaty had been made between Napoleon
and the King of S))ain, whereby the latter
agreed to cede to France the province of

In January, 1802, the assembly of the
Northwestern Territory chartered the
college at Athens. From the earliest
dawn of the western colonies, education
was promptly provided for, and as early as
17S7, newspapers were issued from Pitts-
burgh and Kentucky, and largely read
throughout the frontier settlements. Be-
fore the close of this year, the Congress of
the United States granted to the citizens
of the Northwestern Territory, the forma-
tion of a State government. One of the
provisions of the "compact of 1787 " pro-
vided that whenever the number of inhab-
itants within prescribed limits exceeded
45,0(10, they should be entitled to a sepa-
rate governuiont. The prescribed limits
of Ohio contained, from a census taken to
ascertain the legality of the act, more than
that number, and on the 30th of April,
1S02, Congress passed the act defining its
limits, and on the 2()th of November the
Constitution of the new State of Ohio, so
named from the beautiful river formins
its southern boundary, came into existence.
The exact limits of Lake Michigan were
not then known, but the territory now
included within the State of Michigan was
wholly within the territory of Indiana.

General Harrison, while residing at
Vincennes, made several treaties with the
Indians, thereby gaining large tracts of
lands. The next year is memorable in the
history of the West for the purchase of



Louisiana from France by the United
States I'or $15,000,000. Thus by a peace-
ful mode, the domaiu of the United States
was extended over a large tract of country
west of the Mississippi, and was for a time
under the jurisdiction of the Northwest
government, and as has been mentioned
in tlie early part of this narrative, was
called the "New Northwest." The limits
of this history will not allow a description
of its territory. The same year large
grants of land were obtained from the
Indians, and the House of Representatives
of the new State of Ohio signed a bill
respecting the college township in the
district of Cincinnati.

Before the close of the year, General
Harrison obtained additional grants of
lands from the various Indian nations in
Indiana and the present limits of Illinois,
and on the 18th of August, ISOi, a treaty
at St. Louis, whereby over 51,000,000 acres
of lands were obtained from the aborigines.
Measures were also taken to learn the con-
dition qf affairs in and about Detroit.

C. Joiiette, the Indian agent in Miclii-
gan, still a part of Indiana Territory, re-
ported as follows upon the condition of
matters at tliat post:

"The Town of Detroit.— The charter,
which is for fifteen miles square, was
granted in the time of Louis XIV of
France, and is now, from the best infor-
mation I have been able to get, at Quebec.
Of those two hundred and twenty-five
acres, only four are occupied by the town
and Fort Lenault. The remainder is a
common, except twenty-four acres, which
were added twenty years ago to a farm
belonsinsr to Wm. Macomb. * * * *
A stockade encloses the town, fort and cit-

adel. The pickets, as well as the public
houses, are in a state of gradual decay.
The streets are narrow, straight and regu-
lar, and intersect each other at right angles.
The houses are for the most part low and

During this year Congress granted a
township of land for the sup])ort of a col-
lege, and began to ofl'er inducements for
settlers in these wilds, and the country
now comprising the State of Michig;in
began to fill rapidly with settlers along its
southern borders. This same year, also, a
law was passed organizing the Southwest
Territory, dividing it into two portions,
the Territory of New Orleans, which city
was made the seat of government, and the
District of Louisiana, whidh was annexed
to the domain of Gen. Harrison.

On the nth of January, 1805, tlie Terri-
tory of Michigan was formed. Wm. Hull
was appointed governor with headquarters
at Detroit, the change to take effect on
June 30th. On the 11th of that month, a
fire occurred at Detroit, which destroyed
almost every building in the place. When
the officers of the new Territory reached the
post, they found it in ruins, and the inhab-
itants scattered throughout the country.
Rebuilding, however, soon commenced, and
ere long the town contained more houses
than before the fire, and many of them
much better built.

While this was being done, Indiana had
passed to the second grade of governrnent,
and through her General Assembly had
obtained large tracts of land from the
Indian tribes. To all this the celebrated
Indian, Tecumthe or Tecumseh, vigorously
protested, and it was the main cause of his
attempts to unite the various Indian tribes



in a conflict with the settlers. To obtain a
full account of tiiese attempts, the workings
of the British, and the signal failure, culmi-
nating in the death of Tecumseh at the
battle of the Thames, and tlie close of the
war of 1812 in the Xortlnvest, we will step
aside in our story, and relate the principal
events of his life, and his connection with
this Conflict.


This famous Indian chief was born about
the year 1768, not far from the site of the
present City of Piqun. Ohio. His father,
Puckeshinwa, was a member of the Kisopok
tribe of the Shawanoese nation, and his moth-
er, Methontaske, was a member of the Tur-
tle tribe of the same people. They removed
from Florida about the middle of the last
century to the birthplace of Tecumseh. In
1 774, his father, who had risen to be chief,
was slain at the battle of Point Pleasant,
and not long after, Tecumseh, by his brav-
ery, became the leader of his tribe. In
1795 he was declared chief, and then lived
at Deer Creek, near the site of the present
City of Urbana. He remained here about
one year, when he returned to Piqua, and
in 1798, he went to White River, Indiana.
In 1805, he and his brother, Laulewasikan
(Open Door), who had announced himself
as a prophet, went to a tract of land on the
Wabash River, given them by the Potta-
watomies and Kickapoos. From this date
the chief comes into prominence. He was
now about thirty-seven vears of age, was
five feet and ten inches in height, was stout-
ly built, and possessed of enormous powers
of endurance. His countenance was natu-
rally pleasing, and he was, in general, de-
void of those savage attributes possessed

by most Indians. It is stated he could
read and write, and had a conlidential sec-
retary and adviser, named Billy Caldwell,
a half-breed, who afterward became chief
of the Pottawatomies. He occupied the
first house built on the site of Cliicago. At
this time, Tecumseh entered upon the great
work of his life. He had long objected to
the grants of land made by the Indians to
the whites, and determined to unite all the
Indian tribes into a league, in order that nO'
treaties or grants of land could be made
save by the consent of this confederation.

He traveled constantly, going from north
to south; from the south to tlie north,
everywhere urging the Indians to this step.
He was a matchless orator, and his burning
words had their effect.

Gen. Harrison, then Governor of Indiana,
by watching the movement of the Indians,
became convinced that a grand conspiracy
was forming, and made preparations to de-
fend the settlements. Tecumseii's plan was
similar to Pontiac's, elsewliere described,
and to the cunning artifice of that chieftain
was added his own sagacity.

During the vear 1809, Tecumseh and the
prophet were actively preparing for the
work. In that year. Gen. Harrison entered
into a treaty with the Delawares, Kickapoos,
Pottawatomies, Miamis, Eel River Indians
and Weas, in which these tribes ceded to
the whites certain lands upon the Wabash,
to all of which Tecumseh entered a bitter
protest, averring as one principal reason that
he did not want the Indians to give up any
lands north and west of the Ohio River.

Tecumseh, in August, 1810. visited the
General at Vineennes and held a council
relating to the grievances of the Indians.
Becoming unduly angry at this conference



he was dismissed from the village, aad
soon after departed to incite the Southern
Indian tribes to the conflict.

Gen. Harrison determined to move upon
the chief's headquarters at Tippecanoe, and
for tliis purpose went about sixtv-five miles
up the Wabasii, where he built Fort Harri-
son. From tliis place he went to the
prophet's town, wliere he informed the
Indians he had no hostile intentions,
provided they were true to the existing
treaties. He encamped near the village
early in October, and on the morning of
November 7th, he was attacked by a large
force of the Indians, and the famous battle
of Tippecanoe occurred. The Indians were
routed and their town broken up. Tecum-
seh returning not long after, was erreatly
exasperated at his brother, the prophet,
even threatening to kill him for rashly
precipitating the war, and foiling his
(Tecumseh's) plans.

Tecumseh sent word to General Harri-
son that he was now returned from the
South, and was ready to visit the President,
as had at one time previously been proposed.
Gen. Harrison informed him he could not
go as a chief, which method Tecumseh
desired, and the visit was never made.

In June of the following year, he visited
the Indian agent at Fort Wayne. Here he
disavowed any intention to 'make a war
against the United States, and reproached
Gen. Harrison for marching against his
people. The agent replied to this ; Tecum-
seh listened with a cold indifference, and
after making a few general remarks, with
a haughty air drew his blanket about him,
left the council house, and departed for
Fort Maiden, in up])er Canada, where he
joined the British standard.

He remained tinder this Government,
doing effective work for the Grown while
engaged in the war of 1812 which now
opened. He was, however, always humane
in his treatment of the prisoners, never
allowing his warriors to ruthlessly mutilate
the bodies of those slain, or wantonly
murder the captive.

In the summer of 1813, Perry's victory
on Lake Erie occurred, and shortly after
active preparations were made to capture
Maiden. On the 27th of September, the
American army, under Gen. Harrison, set
sail for the shores of Canada, and in a few
hours stood around the ruins of Maiden,
from which the British army, under Proc-
tor, had retreated to Sandwich, intending
to make its way to the heart of Canada by
the Valley of the Thames. On the 29th
Gen. Harrison was at Sandwich, and Gen.
McArthur took possession of Detroit and
the Teri-itory of Michigan.

On the 2d of October, the Americans
began their pursuit of Proctor, whom they
overtook on the 5th, and the battle of the
Thames followed. Early in the engage-
ment, Tecumseh who was at the head of the
column of Indians was slain, and they, no
longer hearing the voice of their chieftain,
fled. The victory was decisive, and prac-
tically closed the war in the Northwest.

Just who killed the great chief has been
a matter of much dispute ; but the weight
of o])inion awards the act to Col. Ricliard
M. Johnson, who fired at him with a pistol,
the shot proving fatal.

In 1805 occurred Burr's Insurrection.
He took possession of a l)eautiful ishind in
the Ohio, after the killing of Hamilton,
and is charged bj- many with attempting
to set up an independent government. His



plans were frustrated by the general gov-
ernment, his property confiscated and he
was compelled to flee the country for safety.
In January, 1807, Governor Hull, of
Michigan Territory, made a treaty with
the Indians, whereby all that peninsula
was ceded to the United States. Before
the close of the year, a stockade was built
about Detroit. It was also during this year
that Indiana and Illinois endeavored to
obtain the repeal of that section of the
compact of ITS", whereby slavery was ex-
cluded from the Northwest Territory.
These attempts, however, all signally failed.
In 1809 it was deemed advisable to di-
vide the Indiana Territory. This was done,
and the Territory of Illinois was formed
from the western part, the seat of govern-
ment being fixed at Kaskasia. The next
year, the intentions of Tecumseh mani-
fested themselves in open hostilities, and
then began tlie events already narrated.

While this war was in progress, emigra-
tion to the West went on with surprising
rapidity. In 1811, under Mr. Eooseveltof
New York, the first steamboat trip jwas
made on the Ohio, much to the astonish-
ment of the natives, many of whom fled in
terror at the appearance of the " monster."
It arrived at Louisville on the tenth day of
October. At the close of the first week of
January, 1812, it arrived at Natchez, after
being nearly overwhelmed in the great
earthquake which occurred, while on its
downward trip.

The battle of the Thames was foujjht on
October 6th, 1813. It eS'ectually closed hos-
tilities in the Northwest, although peace
was not fully restored until July 22d, 1814,
when a treaty was formed at Greenville,
under the direction of General Harrison,

between the United States and the Indian
tribes, in which it was stipulated that the
Indians shouM cease hostilities against the
Americans if the war were continued.
Such, happily, was not the case, and on the
24:th of December, the treaty of Ghent was
signed by the representatives of England,
and the United States. This treaty was
followed the next year by treaties with va-
rious Indian tribes throughout the West
and Northwest, and quiet was again re-
stored in this part of the new world.

On the iSth of March, 1810, Pittsburgh
was incorporated as a cit}'. It then had a
population of S,Ot)0 peoi)le, and was already
noted for its manufacturing interests. On
April 19th, Indiana Territory was allowed to
form a State government. At that time
there were thirteen counties organized, con-
taining about sixty-three thousand inhabi-
'tants. The first election of State officer?
was held in August, when Jonathan Jenn-
insrs was chosen Governor. The officers were
sworn in on November 7th, and on Decem-
ber 11th, the State was formally admitted
into the Union. For some time the seat of
government was at Corydon, but a more
central location being desirable, the present
capital, Indianapolis (City of Indiana), wa»
laid out January 1, 1825.

On the 28th of December, the Bank of
Illinois, at Shawneetown, was chartered,
with a capital of $300,000. At this period
all banks were under the control of the
States, and were allowed to establish
branches at diflerent convenient ])oints.

Until this time Chillicothe and Cincin-
nati had in turn enjoyed the privileges of
being the ca]iital of Ohio. But the rapid
settlement of the northern and eastern por-
tions of the State demanded, as in Indiana,



a more central location, and before the close
of the year, the site of Columbus was se-
lected and surveyed as the future capital of
the State. Banking had begun in Ohio as
early as 1S08, when the first bank was
chartered at Marietta, but here as elsewhere
it did not bring to the State the ho|ied-for
assistance. It and other banks were subse-
qently unable to redeem their currency,
and were obliged to suspend.

In 1818, Illinois was made a State, and all
the territory north of her northern limits
was erected into a separate territory and
joined to Michigan for judicial purposes.
By the following year, navigation of the
lakes was increasing with great rapidity
and affording an immense source of revenue
to the dwellers in the Northwest, but it was
not until 1826, that the trade was extended
to Lake Michigan, or that steamships began
to navigate the bosom of that inland sea.

Until the year 1832, the commencement
of the Black Hawk War, but few liostilities
were experienced with the Indians. Roads
were opened, canals were dug, cities were
built, common schools were established,
universities were founded, many of which,
especially the Michigan University, have
achieved a world-wide reputation. The
l)eople were becoming wealthy. The do-
mains of the United States had been ex-
tended, and had the sons of the forest been
treated with honesty and justice, the record
of many years would have been that of
peace and continuous prosperity.


This conflict, though confined to Illinois,
is an important epoch in the Northwestern
history, being the last war with the
Indians in this part of the United States.

Ma-ka-tai-me-she-kia-kiah, or Black
Hawk, was born in the principal Sac vil-
lage, about three miles from the junction
of Rock River with the Mississippi, in the
year 1767. His father's name was Py-e-sa
or Pahaes; his gi-andfather's, Na-na-ma-
kee, or tiie Thunderer. Blac'c Hawk early
distinguished himself as a wari-ior, and at
the age of fifteen was permitted to paint,
and was ranked among the braves. About
the year 17S3, he went on an expedition
against the enemies of his nation, the
Osages, one of whom he killed and scalped,
and for this deed of Indian bravery he was
permitted to join in the scalp dance.
Three or four years after, he, at the head of
two hundred braves, went on another expe-
dition against the Osages, to avenge the
murder of some women and cliildren
belonging to his own tribe. Meeting an
equal number of Osage warriors, a fierce
battle ensued, in which the latter tribe lost
one-half their number. The Sacs lost only

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