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301 serve peace, troops were placed at Venango, Fort Pitt, Fort McIntosh, the Muskingum, the Miami, Vincennes, and Louisville, and the governor of Virginia was requested to have the militia of Kentucky in readiness for any emergency.* All these measures, however, produced no results during 1788; the Indians were neither over-awed, conquered nor satisfied; from May until the middle of July they were expected to meet the whites upon the Muskingum,t but the point which had been selected, and where goods had been placed, being at last attacked by the Chippeways, it was thought best to adjourn the meeting and hold it at fort Harmar, where it was at length held, but not until January, 1789.
These Indian uncertainties, however, did not prevent the New England associates from going forward with their operations. During the winter of 1787-8, their men were pressing on over the Alleghanies by the old Indian path which had been opened into Braddock's road, and which has since been followed by the national turnpike from Cumberland westward. Through the dreary winterdays they trudged on, and by April were all gathered on the Yohiogany,|| where boats had been built, and started for the Muskingum. On the 7th of April they landed at the spot chosen, and became the founders of Ohio, unless we regard as such the Moravian missionaries.
As St. Clair, who had been appointed governor the preceding October, had not yet arrived, it became necessary to erect a temporary government for their internal security; for which purpose a set of laws was passed, and published by being nailed to a tree in the village, and Return Jonathan Meigs was appointed to administer them. It is a strong evidence of the good habits of the people of the colony, that during three months, but one difference occurred, and that was compromised. Indeed a better set of men altogether, could scarce have been selected for the purpose, than Putnam's little band. Washington might well say, “no colony in America was ever settled under such favorable auspices as that which has first commenced at the Muskingum. Information, property, and strength will be its characteristics. I know many of the
* Old Journals, iv. 762.
+ Until this meeting was held, it was understood that no settlement, strictly speaking, should take place. See the letter of a settler in Imlay, p. 598. (Ed. 1797.)
# Carey's Museum, iv. 203.
settlers personally, and there never were men better calculated to promote the welfare of such a community.”*
On the 2d of July a meeting of the directors and agents was held on the banks of the Muskingum, for the purpose of naming the new born city and its public squares.f As yet the settlement had been merely “The Muskingum,”! but the name Marietta was now formally given it, in honor of Marie Antoniette; the square upon which the block-houses stood was christened “ Campus Martius; the square No. 19, Capitolium ; the square No. 61, Cecilia ; and the great road through the covert way, Sacra Via.||
On the 4th of July an oration was delivered by Jaines M. Varnum, who, with S. H. Parsons and John Armstrong, f had been appointed to the judicial bench of the territory, on the 16th of October, 1787. Five days later the governor arrived, and the colony began to assume form. The ordinance of 1787 provided two district grades of government for the north-west territory, under the first of which the whole power was in the hands of the governor and the three judges, and this form was at once organized upon the governor's arrival. The first law, which was "for regulating and establishing the militia,” was published upon the 25th of July; and, the next day, appeared the governor's proclamation, erecting all the country that had been ceded by the Indians east of the Scioto river into the county of Washington.**
From that time forward, notwithstandinf the doubt yet existing as to the Indians, all at Marietta went on prosperously and pleasantly. On the 2d of September the first court was held, with becoming ceremonies.
The procession was formed at the Point, (where most of the settlers resided,) in the following order : -- 1st, The high Sheriff, with his drawn sword ; 2d, the citizens; 3d, the officers of the garrison at Fort Harmar; 4th, the members of the bar; 5th, the Supreme judges ; 6th, the Gov* Sparks' Washington, ix. 384. + American Pioneer, i. 83.
Some of the settlers called it the city of Adelphi : See a letter dated May 16th, 1788, to the Massachusetts Spy in Imlay (Ed. 1797) p. 595.
| Carey's Museum, vol. iv. p. 390. In the fifth volume (March, 1789) of that periodical, page 284, is an account of the city of Athens, which Spaniards at this time proposed to build at the mouth of the Missouri. “On the very point” where the rivers joined, was to be Fort Solon; not for defence, however, “ but for the retirement of the governor from the busy scenes of public employment!"
$ See this oration in Carey's Museum for May, 1789, 453 to 455. !
1 Mr. Armstrong declined serving. John Cleves Symmes was chosen in his stead, February 19th, 1788.
** Chase, vol. i. p. 92. Cerey's Museum, ir. 133.
303 ernor and clergyman; 7th, the newly appointed judges of the court of common pleas, generals Rufus Putnam and Benjamin Tupper.
They marched up a path that had been cut and cleared through the forest to Campus Martius Hall, (stockade,) where the whole countermarched, and the judges, (Putnam and Tupper) took their seats. The clergyman, Rev. Dr. Cutler, then invoked the divine blessing. The sheriff, colonel Ebenezer Sproat, (one of nature's nobles) proclaimed with his solemn.O yes,' that a court is opened for the administration of even-handed justice, to the poor and the rich, to the guilty and the innocent, without respect of persons; none to be punished without a trial by their peers, and then in pursuance of the laws and evidence in the case.' Although this scene was exhibited thus early in the settlement of the state, few ever equalled it in the dignity and exalted character of its principal participators. Many of them belong to the history of our country, in the darkest as well as the most splendid periods of the revolutionary war. To witness this spectacle, a large body of Indians was collected, from the most powerful tribes then occupying the almost entire West. They had assembled for the purpose of making a treaty. Whether any of them entered the hall of justice, or what were their impressions we are not told.” (Ainerican Pioneer, vol. i, p. 165. )
“The progress of the settlement, says a letter from the Muskingum, “is sufficiently rapid for the first year. We are continually erecting houses, but arrivals are faster than we can possibly provide convenient covering. Our first ball was opened about the middle of December, at which were fifteen ladies, as well accomplished in the manners of polite circles as any I have ever seen in the old States. I mention this to show the progress of society in this new world; where I believe we shall vie with, if not excel, the old States, in every accomplishment necessary to render life agreeable and happy.”
The emigration westward, even at this time, was very great; the commandant at Fort Harmar reporting four thousand five hundred persons as having passed that post between February and June, 1788; many of whom would have stopped on the purchase of the Associates, had they been ready to receive them.
During the following year, and indeed until the Indians, who, in spite of treaties, had been committing small depredations all the time, stealing horses and sinking boats, went fairly and openly to war, the settlement on the Muskingum grew slowly, but steadily, and to good purpose.*
* The firet Indian attack on the Muskingum settlements wie on January ?, 1791. See post.
Neither were Symmes and his New Jersey friends idle during this year, though his purchase was far more open to Indian depradation than that of the Massachusetts men. His first proposition had been referred, as we have said, to the Board of Treasury, with power to contract, upon the 2nd of October, 1787.
Upon the 26th of the next month Symmes issued a pamphlet, addressed “to the respectable public,” stating the terms of his contract, and the scheme of sale which he proposed to adopt.* This was, to issue his warrants for not less than a quarter section (a hundred and sixty acres,) which might be located any where, except, of course, upon reservations, and spots previously chosen. No section was to be divided, if the warrant held by the locator would cover the whole. The price was to be sixty cents and twothirds till May, 1788; then one dollar till November; and, after that time, was to be regulated by the demand for land. Every locator was bound to begin improvements within two years, or forfeit one-sixth of his purchase to whomsoever would settle thereon and remain seven years. Military bounties might be taken in this as in the purchase of the Associates. For himself Symmes retained one township at the mouth of the Great Miami, at the junction of which stream with the Ohio he proposed to build his great city; to help the growth of which he offered each alternate lot to any one that would build a house and live therein three years.
As Continental certificates were rising, in consequence of the great land purchases then making with them, and as difficulty was apprehended in procuring enough to make his first payment, Symmes was anxious to send forward settlers early, that the true value of his purchase might become known at the east. He had, however, some difficulty in arranging with the Board of Treasury the boundaries of the first portion he was to occupy.t
In January, 1788, Matthias Denman, of New Jersey, took an interest in Symmes' purchase, and located, among other tracts, the section and fractional section upon which Cincinnati has been built. Retaining one-third of this particular locality, he sold another third to Robert Patterson, and the remainder to John Filson; and the three, about August, 1788, agreed to lay out a town on the
See Land Laws and post for the terms, and final settlement of Symmes contract.
Cincinnati laid out.
spot, which was designated as being opposite Licking river, to the mouth of which they proposed to have a road cut from Lexington, Kentucky, to be connected with the northern shore by a ferry. Mr. Filson, who had been a schoolmaster, was appointed to name the town; and, in respect to its situation, and as if with a prophetic perception of the mixed race that were in after days to inhabit there, he named it Losantiville, which, being interpreted, means ville, the town anti, opposite to, os, the mouth, L, of Licking.* This may well put to the blush the Campus Martius of the Marietta scholars, and the Fort Solon of the Spaniards.
Meanwhile, in July, Symmes got thirty people and eight four-horse wagons under way for the West. These reached Limestone (now Maysville) in September, where they find Mr. Stites with several persons from Red Stone. But the mind of the chief purchaser was full of trouble. He had not only been obliged to relinquish his first contract, which was expected to embrace two millions of acres, but had failed to conclude one for the single million which he now proposed taking. This arose from a difference between him and the government, he wishing to have the whole Ohio front between the Miamies, while the Board of Treasury wished to confine him to twenty miles upon the Ohio. This proposition, however, he would not for a long time agree to, as he had made sales along nearly the whole Ohio shore.f Leaving the bargain in this
Cincinnati Directory, for 1819, p. 18. + It may be as well to give here a sketch of the changes made in Symmes' contract. His first application was for all the country between the Miamies, running up to the north line of the Ohio Company's purchase, extending due west. On the 23d of October, 1787, Congress resolved, that the Board of Treasury be authorized to contract with any one for tracts of not less than a million acres of western lands, front of which, on the Ohio, Wabash and other rivers, should not exceed one third the depth. On the 15th of May, 1788, Dayton and Marsh, as Symmes' agents, concluded a contract with the Commissioners of the Treasury for two millions of acres in two equal tracts. In July, Symmes concluded to take only one tract, but differed with the Commissioners on the grounds stated in the text. After much negotiation, upon the 15th of October, 1788, Dayton and Marsh concluded a contract with government bearing date May 15th, for one million of acres, beginning twenty miles up the Ohio from the mouth of the Great Miami, and to run back for quantity between the Miami and a line drawn from the Ohio parallel to the general course of that river. In 1791, Symmes found this would throw his purchase too far back from the Ohio, and applied to Congress to let him have all between the Miamies, running back so as to include a million acres, which that body,'on the 12th of April, 1792, agreed to do. When the lands between the Miamies were surveyed, however, it was found that the tract south of a line drawn from the head of the Little, due west to the Great Miami, would include less than six hundred thousand acres; but even this Symmes could not pay for, and, when his patent issued upon the 30th of September, 1794, it gave him and his associates but two hundred and forty-eight thousand five hundred and forty acres, exclusive of reservations, which amounted to sixty-three thousand one hundred and forty