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from the refreshing waters of the spring while their horses were pasturing on the luxuriant grass in the vicinity. A council of war was held and it was decided to march another day towards the other two Wyandot towns and if no Indians could be found to beat a hasty retreat.
In November, 1816, John Stewart, a freeborn mulatto, who had lived at Marietta, Ohio, felt a strange impulse that stirred his very being to go to the Northwest and preach the gospel, Stewart had imbibed too much from the "cup that cheers” and was finally led to a sense of his lost condition, was converted and joined the Methodist Episcopal church at Marietta. He was very poor of purse and unlearned but carried an exhorters license. One day heeding that “small voice” he packed his grip and started for the Northwest. The first place he stopped was at the Moravian Indian town of Goshen on the Tuscarawas river. Goshen was a Delaware town and Reverend Mortimore was the resident minister.
. After a few days sojourn he proceeded to Captain Pipestown (the captain's Indian name was Tauhaugecaupouye), and Reverend Stewart found the Delawares at his new charge a little averse to his teachings but his fine musical voice in singing soon attracted the Indians.
The writer wishes to introduce one of the earliest events connected with Ohio history, well knowing there has been some dispute on the subject what route Robert La Salle took in the discovery of the Ohio river. It is a well known fact that the French government which held sway over the Ohio country for ninety-four years had an intense desire to find a waterway crossing this continent westward toward the sea of California. Robert La Salle, a Frenchman, who kept a trading store at La Chine on the St. Lawrence was greatly imbued with the idea of new discoveries. He was very conversant with nine different Indian dialects. As his Indian customers would drop into his trading store he would inquire about that large river flowing towards the west. One day a Shawnee Indian prisoner was brought in and said that it could be reached by boat in six weeks. This greatly fired La Salle's imagination and he at once repaired to the seat of government at Quebec to obtain the approval of the governor for an expedition in quest of the discovery of the Ohio river. Letters patent were issued but no money could be furnished for the daring undertaking. Nothing daunted the intrepid La Salle. He at once sold his trading store to the Order of St. Sulpice for $2,800 and purchased nine canoes and the necessary supplies. Two of the canoes carried the Indian guides. The party consisted of twenty-four persons. La Salle's friends gathered about him and implored him not to make the hazardous trip, but to no avail. It is stated that the Indian guides directed them to a tributary of Lake Erie, quite likely entered Sandusky bay, thence up the Sandusky river near the Delaware spring where the portage or carrying place, which is about seven miles, then existed to the Scioto, thence down to the Ohio river. The undertaking was started on July 6, 1669. La Salle was so delighted on his view of the river that he named it La Belle Riviere or “beautiful river.” As he stood upon its banks he took possession of the majestic stream, all its tributaries and all the land towards the northwest in the name of the King of France and named the new discovery which now comprises the states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin, New France, the home at present of over fifteen million people. As the party paddled down the newly discovered river, La Salle at intervals stamped on leaden plates his discovery of the river and buried the plates on the banks, one of which has since been found, and is in an eastern museum. When the French and English began their quarrel previous to the French and Indian war for the right of possession of this inland empire, the French claimed a right to this New France by the right of discovery by their subject La Salle.
At the beginning of the last century the Wyandot nation numbered about two thousand, two hundred souls. It was against their rules in warfare to burn any of their captives. They frequently adopted the white prisoners into their own families and it is said that it was much easier to make an Indian out of a white man than for an Indian to don that higher civilization. The Wyandots were a greatly mixed race. The last fullblooded Wyandot it is said died in Canada in 1823. A part of their blood mixture came about in this way: While the French soldiers were doing military service among the Indians in Canada and the Northwest, there was a stringent law against them marrying while in the military service of the government. The French soldiers soon set aside the French antimarrying law and took unto themselves Indian squaws.
One of the leading events in the history of the Wyandot reservations from 1817 to 1843 was the introduction of a mission, the humble beginning of which was through the efforts of Rev. John Stewart. In 1821 a section of land in the vicinity of the present Old Mission church was set aside for an industrial farm. The Indian boys were taught husbandry and the girls were taught housekeeping, cooking, weaving and baking. As early as 1825 government agents got busy trying to buy the respective reservations, which was stoutly opposed by Rev. James B. Finley, the resident missionary, who was threatened with bodily harm and even death by those land hungry agents. It finally fell to the lot of the lamented Col. John Johnston on March 17, 1842, to conclude a treaty of cession and migration of the Wyandots. A number of years ago the writer received the following information from the secretary of Indian affairs, Washington, D. C.: “By the terms of this treaty, it was stipulated that the chiefs should remove their people without other expense to the United States than $10,000, one-half payable when the first detachment should start; the remainder when the whole nation should arrive at its place of destination, Further, that the Wyandots should receive for the lands ceded another tract of land west of the Mississippi. It contained 148,000 acres; a permanent cash annuity of $17,500, a permanent fund of $500 per annum for educational purposes, and an appropriation of $23,860 to pay the debts of the tribe. They were to be paid the full value of their improvements in the country ceded, and to be provided in their new home with two blackssmiths and a blacksmith shop with necessary steel, iron and tools, and with an agent and interpreter. However, instead of the 148,000 acres promised, the Wyandots received by purchase from the Delaware Indians 24,960 acres, and by a subsequent treaty received in lieu of the balance $148,000 in three annual payments.”
“THE IMMORTAL J. N.'
One of the most peculiar and well known characters of Wyandot county was the “Immortal J. N.,'' as Jacob Newman Free was known. He was born in Mansfield, attended the public schools and later took a clerkship in a drug store, where he was employed for a number of years. He went to California in the early days of the gold excitement and when he returned it was noticed that he was peculiar. It has been claimed by some that “J. N.” was a native of Marion county, but we have verified proof that he was born in Richland county. It was a younger brother of “J. N.” that was born in Marion county. The accompanying portrait was taken of “J. N.” upon one of his visits to Mansfield. After leaving Mansfield, “J. N.” settled with his father's family in McCutchenville, and there he is buried.
THE WYANDOT COUNTY BAR
By W. R. Hare
It would not be a complete history of Wyandot county without some mention being made of the Wyandot county bar. No class of people can long live in a community without at some time needing the assistance of those versed in the law, and there is not a class of citizens in any community who knows so much of the inner life of its inhabitants as does the lawyer. He is called in at the time when there seems great danger that the happiness of the family may be shattered, at a time when good counsel is most needed, when the end of life is approaching and the time for transacting worldly business is short; he is entrusted not only with the monetary affairs of his client but with the deepest secrets of the heart and with the knowledge he thus possesses he has the means within his power to render those who trust him happy or to ruin them and their families forever.
The position occupied by the lawyer is one of great trust and one that must necessarily carry with it the full confidence of the public, were it otherwise, his usefulness is lost and the good he might do is gone forever.
The history of the Bar of Wyandot county begins on the 8th day of April, A. D. 1845, for on that day there was held a special term of the court of common pleas presided over by Abel Renick, William Brown and George W. Leith, associate justices, the regular judge, Ozias Bowen, not being present.
This term of court was held in the home of the late Col. Moses H. Kirby which was situated on the bank of the Sandusky river where now stands the beautiful home of the Elks, and consisted of a double two-story log house standing north and south with a frame addition running to the west. The old log house has long since passed away, but the frame part is still in use as the business room and residence of Charles Hinkleman and is situated on North Sandusky avenue.
These same associate justices also held court on the 14th day of that April in the same place, and then, so far as the records show there was no more court held in this county until the 1st day of July of that year when the regular term was presided over by the then Judge Ozias Bowen, and considerable business was transacted.
On the 14th day of April, 1845, the name of Chester R. Mott appears as that of the first attorney having business before this new court in this new county, and he there appeared in behalf of Daniel Turflinger and in the matter of the probating of the will of Adam Weininger, deceased, and thus it appears that Chester R. Mott was the first attorney and Daniel Turflinger was the first client in the court of common pleas of Wyandot county, Ohio.
On that same day John D. Sears appeared as the attorney for Adam Nigh in the matter of the estate of Tobias Kneasel, deceased, and on the same day said John D. Sears was duly appointed by said court school examiner of this county.
The earlier members of the bar of this county established a very high standard of ability which has been an incentive for all who have since followed in their footsteps, and in going over the list of the members there is not to be found an instance in which any active practitioner has ever betrayed the trust and confidence reposed in him by his clients or the public.
The members of the Wyandot County Bar down to the year 1880 are as follows: Moses H. Kirby, Chester R. Mott, Jude Hall, John D. Sears, Robert McKelly, Peter A. Tyler, S. R. McBane, Henry Maddux, Geo. W. Beery, Geo. Crawford, Jonathan Maffett, Peter B. Beidler, T. E. Grisell, John Berry, Curtis Berry, Jr., D. D. Hare, Adam Kail, Cyrus Sears, G. G. White, W. D. Tyler, Geo. G. Bowman, W. F. Pool, B. F. Ogle, and D. D. Clayton.
Some of these members attained high positions, Chester R. Mott served as a judge of the court of common pleas; John Berry and ,D. D. Hare were members of Congress from this district; Robert McKelly held a prominent place on the board of directors of the first railroad built through the village of