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OF the
APRIL, 1863.
Issued By The Committee of Publication
With the Assistance of the Librarian.
Iowa City:
Jerome & Duncan, Printers

Page 49 - 85
[Continued from page 47, Jan. 1863]

In September of the year, 1836, a treaty was held with the Sac and Fox Indians, on the banks of the river, above the city, where the house of Mrs. Brabrook now stands. Governor Dodge was Commissioner on the part of the United States, to secure a tract of land upon the Iowa river, called “Keokuk’s Reserve.” There were present at the treaty about a thousand Chiefs, Braves and Warriors, and it was the last assemblage of the kind ever held here to treat for the sale of their lands. Mr. D.C. Eldridge was present, and relates the scenes at this treaty. Keokuk was head Chief, and principal speaker on the occasion. Black Hawk was present, but was not allowed to participate in the treaty, standing alone, outside of the groupe with his son. Nau-she-as-kuk and a few other friends were silent spectators. This is the last time the old Chief ever visited this vicinity, which to him had been one of the dearest spots on earth, and around which his affections had clustered from boyhood. He was dressed on this occasion in the white man’s style, having on an old black frock coat, and a drab hat, with a cane, the very picture of disappointed ambition. Like the withered oak of his native forest, torn and shattered by the lightning’s blast, the winter of age upon his brow, and his feeble, tottering steps pressing the soil he so much loved, he stood, a representative, a noble relic of his once powerful tribe, in meditative, dismal silence. What thrilling recollections, what heart stirring scenes, must have passed through the mind of the aged patriarch of three score years, and what deep emotion must have tilled his soul, as he reflected upon the past, and desired to unburden his crowded memory of the wrongs of his people toward him. But he was not allowed to speak. He had made a misstep in the great drama of life. He was a fallen Chieftain. His proud nature would not allow him to yield, and take a lowly seat in the Councils of his people, and so he stood the silent observer of the final contract, that tore him from the last foothold on the hunting grounds of his fathers. The saddened memory of years struggled for utterance, but the great Chieftain smothered it, with stoical indifference. He died on the Des Moines river, October 3d, 1839.

The varied accounts of the death and burial of Black Hawk are such as to induce the author to say, that he was not “buried in a sitting posture in the banks of the Des Moines river, where he could see the canoes of his tribe as they passed to the good hunting ground,” as was stated in some accounts at the time of his death. Neither was he buried as Schoolcraft says, (Vol. 6, p. 554, 1857,) “with all the rights of sepulture which are only bestowed upon their most distinguished men,” and that “they buried him in his war dress in a sitting posture on an eminence, and covered him with a mound of earth.” He sickened and died, near Iowaville, the site of his old town, on the Des Moines river, in Wapello county, of this State; and was buried close by, like Wapello, another chief of his tribe, after the fashion of the whites. His grave was some forty rods from the river, at the upper end of the little prairie bottom were he lived. While performing the public surveys of this District in 1843, one of my section lines ran directly across the remains of the wigwam in which this great warrior closed his earthly career, which I marked upon my map, and from his grwe took bearings to suitable land-marks; recorded them in my regular field notes, and transmitted them to the Surveyor General. Black Hawk’s war-club was then standing at the head of his grave, having been often renewed with paint and wampum, after the fashion of his tribe. At a later period it is said that a certain Dr.----- of Warsaw, III., disinterred the body, and took the bones to Warsaw. Gov. Lucas learning this, required their return to him, when they were placed in the hall of the Historical Society at Burlington, and finally consumed by fire with the rest of the Society’s valuable collections.

At the close of this year, 1836, there were some six or seven houses in the original limits of the town, and the population did not exceed one hundred, all told; while Stephenson had some five hundred inhabitants. There was but one main street, or public road leading through the town. This was up and down the river bank, or Front street. An Indian trail, which afterwards became a public road, led out of the city nearly where Main street now is, passing by the corner of 6th and Main, following the top of the ridge near the present residence of Mr. Newcomb, and running across the College Grounds, intersecting Main street on the West side of the square. Another Indian trail leading from the town, was from the residence of Mr. Le Claire, where the Depot now stands, passing up the bluff where Le Claire street now crosses Sixth, and entered Brady opposite the College grounds. Although a treaty had been made with the Indians and they had sold their lands, yet they still lingered around the place so dear to them. The trading house of Col. Davenport was still kept open, on the Island, and furnished supplies for them.

No portion of the great West, has the Indian been so loath to leave as the hunting and fishing grounds of Rock Island and vicinity. It is said to have been one of the severest trials of Black Hawk’s life, to bid adieu to the home of his youth and the graves of his ancestors. When carried past Rock Island a prisoner, after his defeat and capture at the battle of Bad Axe, he is said to have wept like a child, The powder horn worn by him at his last battle, has recently been obtained from an old Pioneer soldier of the Black Hawk war and presented to the State Historical Society, by R.M. Prettyman, Esq. of Davenport. For many years after the removal of the Sacs and Foxes to their new home beyond the Mississippi, parties of them would pay an annual visit and even now one sees the aged warrior walking over our city, pointing out to his children places of interest now covered by the Wigwams of the white man. Even the fish taken in the As-Sinne Sepo, (Rock River), were considered by the Indian better than any caught in the Mississippi or elsewhere. When the order came for their removal, it was with bowed heads and lingering steps they took up their line of march towards the setting sun, the children of destiny, a persecuted race, seeking an asylum from the oppression of the white man.

In May, 1837, a council of chiefs was held at the trading house of Col. Davenport, on Rock Island, to consider the invitation sent to them by President Van Buren, for a deputation to visit him at Washington. At this “talk,” Keokuk, as Chief of the Sacs and Foxes, was present, and a large number of under chiefs or braves. Among them were Wapello, Poweshiek, Pash-apa-ho, Nau-she-us-kuk, son of Black Hawk, and many others. At the same time a band of Pottawattamie Indians, then on their way to their lands on the Missouri river, were encamped on Black Hawk Creek, some three miles below this city. They had stopped to rest, and visit their friends the Sacs and Foxes. The head men of this band were invited to sit in council.  I had the pleasure of being present with many other strangers, by invitation from Colonel Davenport. This band of Pottawattamies had been encamped for some time, and had annoyed the few settlers along the river and bluffs, by stealing their hogs, an article by the way that an Indian is very fond of. The inhabitants had sent to the old Fort at Montrose, where a few soldiers were still quartered, for assistance to remove these Indians. As the Council was about assembling on the Island, there appeared upon this side of the river a company of dragoons. The Lieutenant in command was soon set across the river, and by invitation took a seat in council. His errand was soon made known, when one of the Pottawattamie chiefs arose, and with much warmth denied the charge of stealing. He was told by the officer that he must prepare to march the next day. But he told the Lieutenant in insolent language that he would not go; that he had no provisions; that the agent had cheated him out of the annuities, and that the whole Federal combination was a heap of impositions. He was soon silenced by the agent, and in a more subdued manner, after being instructed to go by the Fort and get provisions, he told the Lieutenant that a part of his band was encamped on the Wabesipinicon river, and that if he would go up after them, he would be ready to accompany them on his return. The young officer not being up to Indian tricks, left immediately for the “Wapsie,” in pursuit of Indians. Upon his return a few days after, he very frankly acknowledged that he was “sold,” and on looking for his friend the chief, he only found the smoldering ashes of his camp fire, and has never probably had the pleasure of meeting him since.

After this little business of the Lieutenant was concluded, the Council was opened in due form, by smoking the calumet. Keokuk, as usual, was the principal speaker. He first called an aged warrior, or chief, who made a few remarks on being again permitted to meet their white friends. He was followed by Keokuk, who slowly rose to his feet, letting drop his blanket from his shoulders, displaying his calico shirt with the necklace of grizzly bear’s claws hung around his neck, and a proper quantity of wampum. His manner was dignified. All eyes were turned upon him, and a smile of satisfaction, if such a thing could be seen on the face of an Indian, could be traced, as this great orator began his speech. He alluded, in brief terms, to the friendly relations existing between the President and himself, was happy to hear from, and much pleased with, the invitation from him, for a visit. He then entered upon the importance of more material aid from his great father. This was done, probably to please his people and maintain his popularity. As he warmed up with the subject, he became animated and even eloquent. His speech was clear and distinct. He spoke fast, so much so that Mr. Le Claire, the interpreter, had frequently to stop him. His lofty bearing, his earnest intelligent look, and his well-timed gestures, all told that he was one of nature’s orators. His own people had ever looked upon him as a man destined to rule. So powerful in argument was he that he has been known, by his eloquence in debate, to completely turn the multitude from their first purpose. He rose from obscurity to the Chieftainship of his tribe by the force of his talents; and was often charged by his red brethren with having white blood in his veins. There is a mystery hanging over the death of this celebrated Chief.

The Sacs and Foxes, on their removal from here, first settled on the Iowa river; and, after the second purchase, they removed to the Dos Moines river, where they remained until the last sale of their lands in Iowa, when government provided them a home in Kansas. They are now located on the waters of the Neosha and Osage rivers, South-west of Fort Leavenworth near the Shawnees and Kansas Indians, and have a tract of country embracing some four hundred and thirty-five thousand acres. There are about sixteen hundred in both tribes, and draw from the United States an annuity of fifty thousand dollars per annum for their support. They have a large amount of farming lands opened for cultivation and an experienced farmer to teach them agriculture, but from the annual reports of the Indian Bureau we learn that their progress is slow, and their unwillingness to send their children to school exhibits a decided dislike to civilization and improvement. Their proud, independent, restless spirit, has led them several times since their location beyond the Missouri, to get up war parties for a descent upon the Sioux or other tribes, but their agent has been as prompt to put them down. They have never struck a blow since their residence there. Vast sums of money have been expended on these Indians to civilize and Christianize them, but to little purpose. Some difficulties have arisen among themselves, since the death of Keokuk, but of what nature we are not able to relate.

Keokuk remained with them to the time of his death. Suspicion rested on him, in the minds of some of the tribe, of unfairness in the distribution of the annuities. He is said to have had a quarrel with Wai-sau-me-sau, a son of Black Hawk, on the subject of government annuities. Keokuk was charged with partiality towards his own friends and the whites. An effort was made to elect a new disbursing Chief, when the whites interfered and no change was effected.

At the annual payment of annuities in October, 1841, the long smothered vengeance in the hearts of Black Hawk’s sons broke out against Keokuk, for his treatment of their father after his downfall, and one account at the time stated that he was stabbed by Wai-sau-me-sau. Another is that he was poisoned ; but certain it is that he died very suddenly. Nau-she-as-kuk, the other son of Black Hawk, died at the reservation in Kansas, in 1856, of delirium tremens.

There are other incidents that occurred during the year 1836, and prior, that might be worthy of note. One that I recollect was a fight which took place among a band of Sacs and Foxes, who were encamped on the bank of the river just below Cannon’s Mills. They had been supplied, as usual, with liquor, by that unprincipled wretch the frontier whisky dealer, until all were drunk, when general quarrel ensued; knives and tomahawks were at once resorted to, and many were cut severely, while two were killed outright. In ordinary circumstances, the murderer must answer with his life, and if he flies, the friends and relatives of the deceased must pursue and bring the offender to justice. The Chief of the tribe requires his surrender at the hands of his relatives or his tribe, but in a drunken frolic when one is killed, no one is charged with the murder. It is set down to the whisky. The Indian is not to blame. It is the “che-moco-man’s seuti-appo,” or white man’s fire-water, that has done the deed, and no sacrifice of blood is required to wenge the wrong.

In 1841, while making some explorations in the Sioux and Winnebago Indian country, upon the head waters of the Waubsipinecon. Cedar and Iowa rivers, now Minnesota, I stayed a few days at the village of Chos-chunka,” or Big Wave, a Chief of the Winnebagoes. One beautiful moonlight night, the Indian children had been playing with unusual life and gayety, the young men and maidens had roamed at large around the village, and the sports and moonlight games had made the wild woods echo with the rude and sometimes boisterous mirth of these sons of the forest. Our host had pointed to our lodgings in one end of his wigwam, and all had retired, when there came over the stillness of the night, one of those Indian yells so familiar to many of our frontier villages. I knew it well, and as two drunken Indians approached the village, a stir among its inmates was heard, as one and another crept from his lodge to hear the news from the trading house, or some border whisky shop Chos-chunka turned on his bed, and with his long pipe stem stirring the embers, he soon kindled a blaze, lit his pipe and fell back upon his pallet. There was now a glimmering light from the rekindled embers, so that from beneath my blanket I could see all that passed within the wigwam. The noise increased. Footsteps were heard passing by our lodge; it was evident the Indians were gathering for a “Big Drunk.” Soon the bear skin door of the lodge was pushed aside and one of the wives of the Chief, who had been absent a few moments, entered and whispered something in his ear. She went away and the Chief resumed his pipe, and lounged upon his bear-skin bed. The wife soon returned, bearing with her a bottle containing the accursed poison, which she presented to Chos-Chunka. He refused, and bidding her go away, he remained upon his bed. But he seemed uneasy, and at last arose and sat by the tire. Again his squaw brought the fatal bottle, of which she had evidently tasted, and again he refused it, when she threw her arms around his neck and placed the bottle to his lips. His resolutions were all overcome, and he drank, then bade her be gone. But the fatal draught had been taken, and its fire was fast passing through his veins. The noise in the adjoining lodge, where the festive board was spread, had now become load and boisterous. All at once the Chief threw aside his pipe, and rushed out of his lodge.

I spoke to my companions, A.W. Campbell and the interpreter, when we at once arose and made our way out to see the condition of things among the Indians. I had messages, and a pass or permit to visit the country, from Gov. Chambers, endorsed by the Indian Agent, Rev. David Lowry, at Ft. Atkinson, on Turkey river, and well knew that under ordinary circumstances, I was safe while a guest of the Chief, and under the protection of his lodge. I well knew, too, that it was the courtesy due to us, that so long prevented him joining the festive party, tor while ho was struggling so hard between whisky and politeness, he turned many sorrowful and imploring glances toward our silent couch. We spent but a short time looking into the lodge where the drunken scene was last preparing for a bloody ending. As we stood there viewing the circle of Indians within, a dog ran across the ring when a drunken Indian struck him in the ribs. In a moment the owner grappled with the offender, and soon the melee became general. On all such occasions every weapon of a deadly sort is bid by the squaws before the commencement of the frolic. But, in the tussle about the dog, they kicked from under the matting a hatchet. The infuriated swage caught it with all the avidity of the avenger of blood, and with one stroke, cut the scalp from the other’s head, from the forehead to the eye! One single yell was heard, and with a rush, one side of the wigwam was carried away, and the howling of the dogs and crying of the squaws, soon brought the whole village together. As the motley group poured out of the dilapidated wigwam, we soon found our way back to the lodge of the Chieftain, and snugly ensconced ourselves in bed, covered up head and ears, peep holes excepted. In a few moments Chos-Chunk came in with nine of his braves and friends. The usual circle was soon formed and the bottle began to pass, but in the midst of their revelry, the Chief would often caution them about too much noise, as he had distinguished friends visiting him, and they must not be disturbed. That they were “big captains,” and making a picture of their country to show his great Father, the President, (I was surveying for my map of Iowa, published in 1845.) In their drunken carousal I could see that same low, vulgar, nonsensical merriment which is often exhibited in the white man on similar occasions. Thy told their love stories and sung their bachanalian songs, until one after another fell over and were left to sleep away the fumes of that drink, which has carried thousands of these ignorant swages to the grave.

An Indian, when he once tastes liquor, never leaves it until he is drunk or it gives out. He comprehends no other use of it but to stupify. It is no welcome beverage to him, for they do not love the taste of it, but its effects. The palate of the Indian is as little vitiated as that of a child. They use no salt nor seasoned food, and their taste is keen and remarkably sensitive. I have seen the Indian in apparent agony by drinking whisky, which is generally well spiced with red pepper and gums, to keep up its strength, and I have seen the young man and maiden held by main strength, while the whisky has been administered, to teach them to drink.

The next morning, after the affray above narrated, I visited the lodge of the wounded Indian. He refused in sullen silence to converse upon the subject, and would only say, “too much scuti-appo.” No hard feelings were entertained towards the offender, all was charged to the whisky account.

Among the settlers at the close of the year 1836, were Antoine Le Claire, Phillip Hambaugh, Lewis Hibbert, George L. Davenport, L.S. Colton, G C R. Mitchell, Maj. Wm. Gordon, D.C. Eldridge, Dr. Emerson, James and Robert McIntosh,
James M. Bowling, Ira Cook, Sen., and his sons Wm. L., Ebenezer, John P. and Ira Cook, Jr., Adam and John Noel, John Armil and sons, James and Walter Kelly, Dr. James Hall and sons, Alexander W. McGregor, his father and brother, John and David Le Claire, Wm. R. Shoemaker, Edward Powers, James R. Stubbs, ---- Tannerhill, William Watts, Frazier Wilson and others.

There were only seven houses or cabins erected at the close of the year, most of them very rude structures, built of poor material, and but cheerless abodes to meet the coming winter. One of these, the first public house built in the town, was situated at the corner of Front and Ripley streets, erected by Col. Davenport and Mr. Le Claire, and kept at first by Edward Powers, now of Rock Island, called the “Davenport Hotel,” but afterwards enlarged and known as the “U.S. Hotel.” The building is still standing.

The log house of Capt. Litch, the first whisky shop, has been torn away to give place to more substantial buildings. The building erected by Mr. Shoals, afterwards known as the “Dillon House,” stood on the bank of the river, on the next block below Burnell, Gillett & Co.’s Mill. This has been destroyed by fire. The rest of the “land marks” of 1836 are still standing, decaying witnesses of the early trials of the Pioneers of Scott county.

The population did not exceed one hundred. But little ground had been broken, and very little grain of any kind raised. Supplies had to be obtained from Cincinnati and St. Louis. The Fort on Rock Island had been abandoned, and the soldiers removed. The morning reveille, and the evening tattoo had ceased to beat, and old Fort Armstrong, that had afforded shelter and protection to many of the immigrants, was deserted; and as the chilling blast of December fell upon the unprotected settlers, many an anxious heart was saddened by the prospect of the coming Winter, and many a tear wiped in silence, as their thoughts went back to those haleyon days of unalloyed happiness in the land of their nativity.

The survey of the public lauds in Iowa began in the Autumn of 1836 . Scott county survey was made by A. Bent and son, from Michigan, U.S. Deputies from the Surveyor General’s Office at Cincinnati. The surveys of this county were completed in March, 1837. It contains 280,516 acres.

All lands, from the time of the departure of the Indians, until they were offered for sale by the government, were under the rule of squatter sovereignty.” Any man bad a right to select for himself any portion of the public domain, not otherwise appropriated, for his home, and by blazing the lines bounding his “claim” in timber, or staking it out on the prairie, he was legally possessed of title. Societies were formed, or “claim clubs,” who organized themselves to protect one another in their rights. The Secretary kept a book in which all claims had to be recorded. A territorial law existed, making contracts for claims valid, and notes given for such were collectible by law. Great speculations were carried on by pioneer “claim-makers,” a class of men who no sooner than they had sold one claim to some new comer, would proceed to make another, and commence improvements. These claims were respected and held in peace (when properly taken) until the sale of the lands by government, when the owners were permitted to purchase them at the minimum price of $1.25 per acre.

During the fishing season of this Spring, among other neighboring tribes that often visited the Sacs and Foxes to fish in the waters of the As-sin-ne-Sepo, (Rock River,) a small band of Winnebagoes were encamped on Rock Island. As usual the young and more profligate of the tribe were hanging around the groceries in Stephenson and Davenport, bartering such articles as they possessed for whisky. On one occasion two young Indians, being crazed by too large potations from the whisky bottle, quarreled, and one struck the other; an indignity seldom submitted to by an Indian, drunk or sober. The next day they met upon the little willow island, just below the town of Davenport, whether by accident or by common consent, it is not known, but the quarrel was renewed and carried to such an extent, that one of them was killed. No whites were present, and various reports were made by the Indians as to the manner of his death. One account of the affair was that the difficulty was settled by a duel, after the fashion of the -white man, one of the parties using a shot gun, the other a rifle. If it was a duel, it is the first on record of having taken place among the Indians of the North-west. The shot-gun hero was buried in one of the mounds then existing on the banks of the river below the city, on the farm of Ira Cook, Esq., the site of Black Hawk’s last village. There was another Indian buried in the same mound, who died at the same time, having been bitten by a rattlesnake while lying drunk one night. They were placed four feet apart, facing each other; buried in dirt as high up as the waist holding in one hand the paint, and in the other the tomahawk. The graves were surrounded with poles or pickets some ten feet high, and set so close that no animal of any size could get to the bodies.

The survivor fled to his home in Shab-be-nah’s Grove on Rock River, leaving his friends here in deep distress at his misfortune, and the dire consequences that must unavoidably follow, according to Indian custom. The fugitive well knew his doom! There was blood upon his skirts. The relatives of the deceased demanded his return. They clamored for his blood. His own sister and some of his relatives went for him, and found him in his wigwam, with blackened face, brooding in silence over his act of blood, feel that the Great Spirit was angry with him and that no sacrifice was too great to appease his wrath. The sister plead with him to return to Rock Island and meet his fate, and thus appease the wrathful spirit of the departed one. One bright morning in May, a few days after the murder, the quiet camp of the Indians on As in-ne-Maness (Rock Island) was awakened by the doleful chant of the death song.  A few canoes came gliding around the point of the Island, among them was that of the murderer, singing his last song this side the good hunting ground. His canoe was paddled by his own sister whom he tenderly loved. The long protracted howl of the Indian crier soon put in motion the whole camp, on both sides of the river. From every cave and eddy along the banks of the river, there shot forth canoes filled with excited natives, eager to participate in the bloody scene about to be enacted. A circle was soon formed a little above the burying ground of the old Fort at the foot of the Island. A shallow grave was dug, and the willing but trembling culprit was led to it by his mourning sister, and kneeling on one side of it, the nearest male relative of the deceased approached, and with one blow of the tomahawk his death song was hushed, and then his body was cut in pieces by the surrounding Indians.

The first marriage ceremony in town took place in the Spring of this year. The parties were Wm. B. Watts and a niece of Antoine Le Claire, Esq. Mrs. Watts died a few years afterwards, and was buried in Mr. Le Claire’s private burial ground. This Spring also the first brick-yard was opened by Mr. Harvey Leonard, from Indiana, on Sixth, between Main and Harrison streets. Mr. Leonard not only manufactured the brick, but was a master builder, and carried on the business for many years. In 1851, he was elected Sheriff, an office which he held many years.

Among the improvements introduced at this early day, in the mechanical line, was one of “ Getty’s Patent Metallic Mills,” owned by D . C. Eldridge. This little machine, not much larger than a coffee mill, did wonders in the way of cracking wheat and corn. Some called it a “flouring mill,” although the flour made in it might not bear inspection at the present day, yet the hot rolls made from it, when placed upon the table, superseded all other bread then in use, which consisted principally of “corn dodgers.” Its propelling power was a horse which had done good service in the Black Hawk War, (or that of 1812). We imagine we can now see the thing in operation, down on “ Brimstone Corner,” (Front and Ripley streets,) with Joe Topin, the old discharged soldier, as head engineer, rolling out the bread stuff by the quart. But this was the "day of small things.”

Some trouble occurred this year among claim-holders. The new comers, in some instances, were unwilling to go over Duck Creek to take claims, and considered the Squatter Sovereignty too liberal in giving to each man three hundred and twenty acres, while none of it was improved. Individuals, not in actual possession, were liable to have their claims jumped. Several cases of this kind occurred, when the Society, which had been organized in March of this year, interfered. Having tried one man by the name of Stephens, who had jumped a claim of Maj. Wilson’s, (now of Rock Island,) where the Ladies’ College now stands, or a part of “Fulton’s addition,” and he refusing to vacate the premises, on application of the Major, the Sheriff of Du Buque county was sent for, there being then no nearer seat of Justice than Du Buque. On the arrival of Sheriff Cummings, he found Mr. Stephens snugly ensconced in the Major’s cabin, armed with the instruments that would terminate life if properly handled, and threatening entire annihilation to any and all who might dare to touch him. The Sheriff soon summoned his posse, and with them came a yoke of oxen, which were soon hitched to one corner of the log cabin, and as the timbers began to show signs of parting, Mr. Stephens very willingly vacated the premises, and was shown the most feasible, as well as the quickest route to Stephenson, and never afterward made any attempt to recover his claim on this side of the river.

At the close of 1837, there were about fifteen or sixteen houses in the town, six new ones having been built during the year, and the town numbered about one hundred and sixty inhabitants. The Autumn of this year was delightful. The Summer was not hot nor oppressive. It gently merged into Autumn, and Winter came in, and continued mild all the season. I was in camp prosecuting the public surveys upon the Wanbsepinecon river from the 17th of October until the first of April, with no other shelter for myself and men, than a canvas tent, and was detained front work but three days during the whole time, on account of storm or cold weather. The snow fell that Winter to the depth of three or four inches only. The Mississippi river closed on the 13th of February. On the first day of April, 1838, the first boat of the season passed down, the river having been open but a few days. The Spring was mild and beautiful.

The immigrants of the year were but few, compared with after years. Among them, were Nathaniel Squires, John Forrest, Timothy and Thomas Dillon and families, Rev. J. A. Palmorgues, Rodolphus Bennet, John N. Macklot, John M.D. Burrows, George Thorne, William Eldridge, Robert Neff, Frank Perrin, A.F. Russell, Samuel Ringwalt, Edward Davis, Seth F. Whiting, Ansel Briggs, Thos. S. and David Hoge.

But little produce was raised this year. Meat was scarce except wild game. All seemed happy and well pleased with the country. We belonged to Wisconsin Territory, and lived under the laws of Michigan. Our first steps toward civilization and improvement had been taken. The beautiful prairies, in virgin loveliness, outside of our present city limits, were untouched by the rude hand of man. All the loveliness and beauty of Eden, could scarcely surpass that of the rolling prairies of Scott county at that day. The wild flowers were far more numerous and variegated than now, richer and more fragrant in their wild untrodden state, than since reckless man has trampled under foot the floral kingdom of our once lovely prairies.

Among the most active and efficient young men of this day, was Jonathan W. Parker, son of our fellow-citizen Jonathan Parker, he emigrated in the Autumn of 1880, from Luzern county. Pa., a lawyer by profession, having studied under Judge Kidder, of Wilksbarre. His destination was Galena, but the boat upon which he had taken passage from St. Louis, became ice-bound at this place, and laid up for the Winter. Having spent the Winter here, and becoming attached to the place, he finally settled here. His numerous highly interesting letters, descriptive of the country, and published in the cast, did much to induce emigration. He was a Botanist, and spent much time among the flowers of our prairies. He delivered the Oration on the 4th day of July of this year, (1837,) it being the first celebration of any kind ever held in the city. Col. T. C. Eads, was President, Jonathan W. Parker, Orator, and Isaac Hedges, Marshal of the day. Mr. Parker was in our Territorial Legislature at Burlington, in 1839, was elected President of the Council, and did much towards framing the code of laws for the Territory. He held at various times, the offices of Justice of the Peace, Judge of Probate, and was the second Mayor of the city of Davenport. lie left here in 1844, traveled considerable through the United States, changed his profession for that of medicine, and in August, 1850, was located in Cincinnati, Ohio, where he died of cholera, that Autumn, at the house of Dr. Gatchel, much lamented for his many social and moral virtues.

There are many incidents which transpired among the settlers of 1837, that would be interesting to narrate. The financial troubles of the east were keenly felt here. There was no money, no credit, nor any produce to bring supplies to the infant colony. But few of the immigrants brought a supply of money, and to many the approaching winter looked dark and lowering. The Indians that still remained here, could not furnish a supply of wild game, but in return they asked for Per-quash-i-con (bread), and Co-cosh (pork), or Pin-ne-ac (potatoes.) The small stocks of merchandise were exhausted, so much so, that the first steamboats in the spring were looked for with great anxiety. Like the Pilgrim Fathers of New England, looking forth from the “rock bound coast” towards the land of their nativity, they sighed for the “flesh pots”, and remembered the “leeks and the garlics,” of their own native land.

Well do the “Old Settlors” of Iowa remember the days and years, from the first settlement to 1840. Those were days of sadness and often of distress. The endearments of home had been broken up in another land, and all that was dear and hallowed on earth, the home of childhood and the scenes of youth were severed and we sat down by the gentle waters of our noble river, and often “hung our harps upon the willows.” But the bright prospects of the future led us on, and with hope as our sheet anchor, we lived upon the fruits of our labor, almost an exiled race, for many years. No splendid cottage was then our home. The rude cabin was our shelter, and we were scarcely protected from the rains of Summer or the snows of Winter. No luxuries crowned our board, but we rejoiced in that Providence, which shaped our destinies, and led us to the shores of the Mississippi. We loved the land of our adoption. "We loved her soil, her climate and her majestic river, upon whose banks we often strayed and mingled our tears with one another. The Pioneers of Scott county, came as the vanguard of that great army that has since flooded our land. They came to build for themselves and posterity a glorious destiny, amici the wilds of Iowa. They brought no sword, or battleaxe, but the plough share and pruning hook were their only weapons. They had no history to point them the way, no kind friend to bid them welcome to these shores. The legends of the Indian could only tell them of the beauty of the land they came to possess, and instead of the smiles of welcome, they received only the frowns of the savage.

The Spring of 1838, found the infant settlement laboring under many discouragements. The existing topic, the all-absorbing county-seat question, had helped to wear away the Winter.  Immigration began to set in for the West, and the drooping spirit of the inhabitants revived. Buildings began to increase, a church or two were organized, a school opened, and things began to wear a brighter aspect as the genial rays of the sun began to warm vegetation into life. In February, the first Territorial Legislature which held its session at Burlington, passed an act organizing Scott comity, and fixing the boundaries thereof. The memorable 19th of February was the day set for the election for the county seat. An act also was passed authorizing the election of a Board of County Commissioners, to be held at various places in the county, on the third Monday of February. This Board of Commissioners were to do all the business of the county, as Judge of Probate, and take care of all suits at law, etc. Maj. Frazer Wilson, now of Rock Island, had received the first appointment of Sheriff, from the Territorial Governor.

Early in the spring, Mr. Le Claire laid out his “First Addition to the Town of Davenport,” upon his “reserve,” as it was called. This included two tiers of blocks forming Harrison andi Brady streets, running back as far as Seventh street. No title as yet, in fee simple, had been obtained by the proprietors of the town, and title bonds only were given to purchasers. In this new addition to the town, Mr. Le Claire could give clear titles, and was able to sell lots on long time to actual settlers. This put new life into the inhabitants, and the immigration coming in the Spring, was much larger than any previous year, and the town for the first time began to make progress in improvement.

The first Board of County Commissioners elect, were Benj. F. Pike, now in California, Andrew W. Campbell, who died on Green river, in Utah, and Alfred Carter, who died in Hickory Grove, in this county, in 1845. The Legislature also passed an act incorporating the town of Davenport, and at the April election Rodolphus Bennett, now of Princeton, in this county, was elected Mayor, and Frazer Wilson, Recorder.  Dr. A.C. Donaldson, D.C. Eldridge, John Forest, Thomas Dillon and Capt. John Litch, were elected Trustees. These were the first officers of this Township. The meeting of the first Town Council soon followed, and James M. Bowling was appointed Treasurer, William Nichols, Street Commissioner, and William H. Patton, Marshal. The first seal used by the City Council, was by a vote, an American twenty-five cent piece.

During the Summer, the first brick house was erected, by D.C. Eldridge, and is still standing on the N.E. corner of Third and Main streets. The old part of the Catholic church was also built this Summer, the brick work by Mr. Noel, and the carpenter work by Nathaniel Squires. It was afterwards enlarged, and is now used for a school-house. The Rev. J.M. Palamorgues was placed in charge at its organization, and is still a faithful watchman over the congregation. Religious services were held at various places in the town, as opportunity presented. The first regular preaching was a sermon by Rev. Mr. Gavit, of Ohio, at the house of D.C. Eldridge.

On the 4th of July of this year, we were separated by act of Congress from the Territory of Wisconsin, and organized into a separate Territory. Robert Lucas, of Ohio, was the first Governor, who made the following appointments for Scott county, Willard Barrows, Notary Public; Ebenezer Cook, Judge of Probate; Adrian H. Davenport, Sheriff; Isaac A. Hedges and .John Porter, Justices of the Peace. D. C. Eldridge received the appointment of Postmaster.

At the first election under the new Territorial law, in September, W.W. Chapman was elected Delegate to Congress, Jonathan W. Parker, member of Council; J.A. Birchard and Laurel Summers, Representatives. Clinton county was then attached to Scott for judicial purposes.

On the 7th of July, 1838, Andrew Logan, from Pennsylvania, arrived with a printing press, and on the 17th of September following, issued the first number of the “Davenport Iowa Sun,’' a newspaper which at that day was put forth under many discouragements. Those only, who have themselves been pioneers in such an enterprise, can realize the difficulties attending it. For the two first years, Mr. Logan had no assistance but his two little sons, the eldest of which was but twelve years old. The motto, of his paper was “And man went forth to till the ground.

His press was of the more antiquated kind, and his type had done good service at other places. Yet it was hailed as a great acquisition to the embryo towns of Davenport and Rockingham, for it was presented as a candidate for either place. The county seat question was then at its highest excitement, and big offers were made by both parties for its location. Davenport was the successful winner of the prize. The machine worked off the Weekly Sun, and fought with great energy the battles of the county seat question; the principal writers, aside from its editors, were John H. Thorington,  the father of the Hon. James Thorington, on the Davenport side, and John H. Sullivan, for Rockingham. For a time, it seemed to flourish amid all its difficulties, and often would its rays break forth from the clouds that seemed to obscure it, and shine with much brightness. But after the county seat question became settled, and a more modern press was introduced, the “ Sun of Davenport*’ was allowed to set,, realizing in the fullest extent, that “promises to printers arc made to be broken.” It was then that Mr. Logan put in practice his motto, for “he went forth to till the ground.” About six miles from the town, on the Iowa City road, he took up his claim, and was emphatically the pioneer farmer upon our prairies, there being at the time but one house between him and the town. He has ever been a good friend to the interests of Scott county, ever carrying with him the good will, respect and esteem of all who have the pleasures of his acquaintance. We learn with regret, that he has recently sold his beautiful prairie home, and is about to remove to Marshall county, in this State.

Numerous public roads have run, this season, in all directions from the town, leading back to the groves and to the Wabesipinecon river, where a few settlers had taken pre-emption claims. The first District Court met here in October, the Hon. Thos. S. Wilson presiding. Several Attorneys were admitted to the bar; but little business was done.

The amount of wheat raised this year in the county was about two thousand bushels, and was worth twenty five cents a bushel. Money was a little more plenty than the year before, owing to the immigration, but there was no demand for produce, and no buyers for shipment. Potatoes were scarce this year, and worth one dollar a bushel. A saw mill was in operation at the mouth of Duck Creek, Capt. Clark’s, making only hard lumber, which sold at thirty-five dollars a thousand feet. All pine lumber was brought from Cincinnati, and worth fifty dollars a thousand.

The “ Davenport Hotel” this year passed into the hands of Samuel Barkley, from Penn. A Millinery shop was opened by Miss M. C. Cooper, from Baltimore. D.C. Eldridge opened a carriage and blacksmith shop, and R. H. Kinney a watch and jewelry store. Messrs. Le Claire and Davenport opened a largo store, as Forwarding and Commission Merchants. The first land sales of the Territory were advertised to come off at Burlington on the 19th of November, but were postponed. The village contained at the close of the year about forty houses, and a population of near one hundred. The Treasury of the county had received for taxes this year, licenses and fines less than $500, and expended nearly $800. The assessment on property was sufficient to have balanced expenditures, but there was but about $250 ever collected.

The river closed the 17th of December. The Winter was mild and pleasant, but very little snow, and passed much pleasanter than the previous one. There was a large circle of young people, and a cordial good feeling existed among them. Parties and balls were numerous. Sleigh riding upon the ice was a great recreation. Wolf hunts, and the chase for deer and turkey helped to fill up the dreary days of Winter. Spring opened early, the river breaking up on the last day of February. Rafts of lumber began to make their appearance, this year, from the}di cries of Wisconsin, and sold at thirty five dollars a thousand feet.

The local difficulties in regard to the county seat question still existed, and the spring of 1839 opened with the prospect of another warm contest for the seat of justice. The second session of the District Court was held in May, but there was no business before it of consequence, not a single bill of indictment being found by the Grand .Jury against any individual in Scott county. No political party lines were yet drawn. At the August election, the question was "Davenport or Rockingham.”  The latter elected her Representatives, Laurel Summers and Joseph M. Robertson, against the Davenport candidates, G.C.R. Mitchell and Abner Beard. The two old Commissioners were elected, A. W. Campbell and Alfred Carter, while the Davenport factions elected the other one, John Work, and A.F. Russell as County Surveyor. Ira Cook, Senior, was elected Treasurer by the Rockingham party, with the Assessor and all minor officers.

The first Fire Department of Davenport was organized the 27th of July, by requiring every man who occupied a house to keep two fire buckets always in readiness, and to use them in case of fire.

The Rev. Asa Turner, now of Denmark, in this State, in traveling through this county, preached and lectured on Temperance. Through his exertions, a Temperance Society was formed, the 6th of August, on the total abstinence principle, receiving at its first organization fifty-six signatures, Rodolphus Bennett, Mayor of the city, being its first President. The Society commenced with about eighty members.

Three other churches were organized this Summer, and a Female Seminary started by the Misses .O’Harra. A Common School was also opened by a Mr. Blood.  Capt. Wilson also commenced running his steam ferry boat this fall. The first paint shop, by Riddle & Morton; the first wagon shop, by Seth F. Whiting; and the first drug store by Charles Lesslie, were opened this year.

But the greatest acquisition to the town this year, the crowning point, and the wonder of the age was the completion of the Le Claire House, at a cost of thirty-five thousand dollars! The stone work of this edifice, now standing on the corner of Main and Second street, (the old part,) was done by Alexander Brownlie, of Long Grove, in this county. The brick work by D.C. Eldridge, and the carpenter work by Nathaniel Squires. The building of this house at so early a day, was an enterprise the equal of which is seldom undertaken. The progress of the town or county—did not warrant it, yet confidence in the future, and the enterprising spirit of Mr. Le Claire which has not left him to this day, carried forward the work to a successful completion. Succeeding years found this house filled with guests from the South
during the warm season, and although its owner has ever failed to reap much benefit directly from rents, &c., yet it has been a source of profit to some, an acquisition to the town, and a home of comfort to many a weary traveler on his first advent into Iowa.

The death of Wm. B. Conway, Esq., Secretary of the Territory occurred on the 9th of November of this year. He was a resident of Davenport, but died at Burlington while attending to his official duties at the sitting of the Legislature. His body was brought here for interment. A public meeting was held and resolutions passed, testifying to the profound regret at the loss of so valuable a citizen from our midst.

In the fall of this year some difficulties arose upon our Southern borders in relation to the boundary line between Missouri and the Territory of Iowa, which, being fanned into a flame, created quite a sensation along the counties bordering upon the Mississippi river. A notice of this farce might not be deemed here out of place, as showing how trivial a circumstance is required upon the frontier at an early day, to create an alarm, and arouse the listless energies of a naturally lazy people, who for the want of a more active and useful life, are ever ready to enlist in any enterprise that may be set on foot. The same scenes occur every year upon our Western border. The cry of “ Indians” is all sufficient to rally the little pioneer settlement, and from the smallest circumstance, enormous depredations and swage hostility are charged upon a few suffering Indians who may be lurking upon the outposts of civilization, with no other design than to procure food and shelter from those who have driven the game beyond their reach.

I can no better portray the scenes and events of this “ Missouri war” as it was called, than by quoting from the graphic pen of the Hon. John P. Cook, in his annual address at the first festival of the Pioneer Settlers’ Association, delivered the 22d of February, 1858. In speaking of the “ times that tried men’s souls,” Mr. Cook says: “During the time of the contest for the county seat, an event transpired which must not be omitted in speaking of the history of our settlement. A dispute arose between the State of Missouri and the then Territory of Iowa as to the boundary line between them, and so determined were the authorities on both sides to exercise jurisdiction over the disputed territory, that it resulted in what is known to the Old Settlers as the “Missouri War.”

There were warriors in those days; and I should do injustice to the patriotism of that period, if I neglected to notice the military darings of the volunteers who rushed to the standard (and rations) of the commander-in-chief, in obedience to his call. The Sheriff of a border county in Iowa undertook to enforce the collection of taxes in the disputed territory. He was arrested by the authorities of Missouri. The executive of Iowa demanded his release. It was refused; and to rescue the Sheriff, Governor Lucas ordered out the militia and called for volunteers. “ My voice is now for war”—was the patriotic response of every true “ Hawkeye.” The county seat question was forgotten in the more important duty of driving the invaders from our soil. Davenport and Rockingham men met, embraced, buckled on their armor, and side by side shouted their war cry—“ Death to the invading Pukes!” The officers in command held a council of war, and it was decided that Davenport should be the head quarters of the Scott county army, in order that the troops might be inspired by the sight of old Fort Armstrong, and at the same time occupy a position so near the Fort, that a safe retreat would be at hand, in case of an attack from the enemy.

On the day appointed for the first drill, the whole country marched to the standard of the gallant Colonel in command, and Davenport witnessed one of the most spirited military reviews that ever took place within her limits. The line was formed on the banks of the river, fronting towards the enemy’s country, the right wing resting against a cotton wood tree, the left in close proximity to the ferry house. There they stood, veterans of iron nerve and dauntless courage, presenting a sight that would have daunted the most desperate foe, and assuring the women and children that they would defend their homes to the death, against the border ruffians” from the Des Moines river.

The weapons carried by some of these volunteer patriots, were not satisfactory to the commanding officers, and about one fourth of the army were ordered out of the ranks, and their services dispensed with, unless they would procure others of a different character, and more in accordance with the army regulations. The objectionable weapons consisted of a plough colter, carried in a link of a large log chain, which the valiant soldier had over his shoulder. Another was a sheet iron sword about six feet in length, fastened to a rope shoulder strap. Another was an old fashioned sausage stuffer. Another with an old musket without a lock, and the balance of like character.

The order was given for the owners of these nondescript weapons to march out of the ranks three steps. The order was obeyed. The ranks closed up, and the offending soldiers were discharged with a reprimand.

I am not prepared to say that the commanding officer was justified, in thus summarily discharging so many men, who were ready and anxious to serve their country, and the result proved, that the amount of bravery dismissed was equal to that retained; for no sooner were the discharged soldiers clear of the line of the regiment, than they formed a company of cavalry, a company of dragoons, and a company which they called the "Squad,” and then, under the superior generalship of their leader, the knight of the six foot sword, they made a bold charge upon the regulars, broke their line, drove not a few of them into the river, some into and some around the Ferry House, some into the grocery, and some out of town; thus defeating and dispersing the regular army with out the loss of a man on either side.

This conflict was disastrous in its results to the regular army, and before the forces could again be collected, peace was declared and the army disbanded.

This unlooked for cessation of hostilities was a severe blow to the military aspirations of the “Hawkeyes,” and disappointed the just expectations of those who had hoped to distinguish themselves in the defense of our Territorial rights. The disappointment was not felt by the army of Scott county alone. Numerous companies had been formed elsewhere, and had started for the seat of war, with supplies for the campaign.

A company of about thirty left an adjoining county, under the leadership of a chieftain, who often used to say that he could “whip his weight in wild cats,” and who has since represented you in the National Congress—has been upon your Supreme Bench, and has also been Chief Justice of California.

He started out with thirty men and six baggage wagons, well loaded with supplies for his army, and, being determined to keep up the spirits of his men, he freighted five of his wagons with whisky.

The question of boundary was subsequently submitted to the Supreme Court of the United States, and the disputed territory given to Iowa.”

The financial condition of the county at the close of this year, shows, in a measure, the increase and progress made in its settlement. The receipts from licenses, ferries and fines, including tax list which was $1,410.92, was a revenue of $2,578.94, while the expenditures were only $1,804.63. The immigration this year was small. With reference to the moral and religious aspect of things at this time, but little can be said. I insert, however, a paragraph from “Wilkie’s Davenport Past and Present,” in order to correct .any impression that might prevail with reference to the dissipation prevalent at that day:
“Frequent allusions have been made, thus far, to the many ‘good times’ had by the old settlers. It will not be inferred from it that they were dissipated or drunkards. Far from it. Some of the brightest lights now in the Church, at the Bar, and in private life, are those very men. They but complied with the character of the times, while absent from social refinements, and the elegancies of older towns; almost all strangers to each other, and crying for that excitement., which now is indulged in the intercourse of hosts of friends, and friendly relations of long standing, they could not well do otherwise than they did. Mostly men from large cities, they were envied by the comparative quiet of a frontier life, and to vary their listless lives, resorted to stimulants, or whatever else would afford excitement.”
The Winter was rather more severe than the one previous. The river closed at the head of the rapids in December, but not until the 14th of January at this place, and opened the first day of March.

The year of 1839 closed with about one hundred houses in the town of Davenport, and a population of about three hundred.

1840.—Immigration commenced this year with the first boats of the season, March 3d. An Agricultural Society had been formed in January, A. W. McGregor, Esq., first President, G. C. R. Mitchell, Esq., Vice President, John Forest, Secretary, and a A. Le Claire, Treasurer. At the Township elections held in April, John H. Thorington, was elected Mayor, and Frazer Wilson, Recorder. The Trustees elected, were Geo. L. Davenport, Seth F. Whiting, J. W. Parker, John Forest and William Nichols.

The Du Buque land sales came off in May, and the settlers generally attended, en mase, in order to protect their claim, and have their lands bid in to them at Government price, one dollar and twenty-five cents an acre. This sale brought all matters of disputes about claims, to a sudden close. A Committee of arbitration was chosen by the settlers, before whom all disputes were settled, and the land bid off by G.C.R. Mitchell, for each claimant.

In July, the Supreme Court tried the writ of mandamus granted to the Rockingham party, against the Commissioners of Du Buque county, commanding and requesting them to make an entry iu their books to the effect that Rockingham was the county seat. The Court decided in favor of claimants, when a petition to the Legislature was gotten up by the Davenport party, of over three hundred names, praying for a new election. The act was passed, and the fourth Monday of August fixed as the day for holding a new election. This election resulted favorably to Davenport, and thus was the long vexed question forever put to rest ; the citizens of Davenport building the Court-House and Jail, free of expense to the county, as per contract. As this is the last notice of this long unsettled question, and desirous of showing, as a part of our history, who at this early day came forward and nobly sustained her interests, we here publish a list of the donations and subscriptions to the public buildings, in full:
The following article was placed in the hands of the county Treasurer, the other day, as a donation to the county, for the express purpose of erecting the public buildings, should this place be selected as the county seat, at either the election in August or September.
 A donation of ninety acres of land is offered the county, at the mouth of Duck Creek, providing that point should be selected at the first election. Should the election not be decided on the first ballot, no donation is offered either by Duck Creek or Rockingham. In addition to the land which the donators have agreed to give, sell and convey to the county, they also offer eight hundred and twenty-five dollars, mostly materials. The people have both propositions before them, and they will be enabled to decide as to the amount donated for each point. A tax of six or eight thousand dollars on the inhabitants of the county, would be oppressive in our present infant and embarrassed state, and it is hardly supposed any person would vote for such a tax, when they have the offer of a donation nearly if not amply sufficient to cover all expenses.
Davenport, August 3, 1840.

Whereas, the question of the location of the county seat in Scott county is to be settled, by a vote of the people of said county, the points to be voted for being Davenport, Rockingham and a point in Pleasant Valley near the mouth of Duck Creek; and whereas, Rockingham and said point in Pleasant Valley near the mouth of Duck Creek have each proposed donations to the county to erecting public buildings therein, to be paid by the place in which the county seat should be located : this proposition, the subscribers believe to have been made with a view of influencing the voters of said county to vote for said points instead of Davenport; and believing Davenport is the most suitable place, and wishing to counteract said undue influence, tor the purpose of making up a sum equal or greater than that offered by either of those points, we, the subscribers, agree, and hereby bind ourselves to give and convey in fee simple to the County Commissioners of Scott county the property described by each of us, to be disposed of in raising a fund tor the benefit of the county, to be applied exclusively to the erection of a courthouse and jail, on condition that the town of Davenport shall be the point selected as county seat of Scott county, and we who do not give lots or land, bind our selves to pay in cash or the manner stipulated, the sums affixed opposite our respective names, on the terms therein stated, in witness whereof we have hereunto set our hands and seals.

By virtue of a resolution this day passed by the Mayor, Recorder and Trustees of the town of Davenport, authorizing the Mayor, on behalf of the corporation, to subscribe the sum of live hundred dollars, to aid in defraying the expense of erecting a Court-House and Jail in the town of Davenport, I, John II. Thorington, Mayor of the town of Davenport, do promise on the part and in behalf of the said corporation, to pay to the Commissioners of Scott county, on or before the first day of August next, the sum of five hundred dollars, provided, and it Is expressly understood, that the above stipulated subscription i-s binding only upon condition that the said town of Davenport shall be selected as the permanent seat of justice for Scott county, and not otherwise.

The Town of Davenport, by John H. Thorington,
Mayor, - - $500,00
I, Antoine Le Claire, promise to convey, on the condition before stipulated, the following described lots and lands, to wit: Lot 3, block 15; 2, block 38; 3, 4 and 6, block 39; 1, block 12 ; 8, block 28; 8, block 32; 7, 8, 0 and 10, block 7.
Out lots Nos. 5, 10, 19, 22, 24, containing four acres each.
Antoine Le Claire. (end)

I, Antoine Le Claire, Attorney for P. G. Ham bough, promise
to convey on the condition before stipulated, the following described lots : 6 and 6, block 11; 5 and 6, block 25; 1 and 2, block 37.
P. G. Hambougii, By Antoine Le Claire.

I, George Davenport, promise to convey on the conditions above stipulated, the following described lots, to wit : West half of block 23; lots 4, 5 and 6, block II; 1, 2, 7 and 8, block 35 ; 5, block 3.
Geo. Davenport.

I, John Macklot, promise to convey on the conditions above stipulated, the following described lots, to wit: Lots 1, 2, 7 and 8 block 36, if the Court House will be placed on Bolivar Square.
John Macklot.

Antoine Le Claire, Agent for James May, promise to convey on the conditions before stipulated, the following described lots, to wit: Lots No. 1 and 2 block 13; 1 block 39; 7 and 8 block 37; 3 block 13. Antoine Le Claire,
Agent for James May.

We, James and Robert M’Intosh, promise to convey on the conditions before stipulated, the following described lots: 7 and 8 block 12; 3 and 4 in block 14; 7 and 8 in block 36; 5 in block 32; 2 in block 35.  J. & R. M’Intosh.
James Hall   $150.00
N. Squires Carpenter work $300.00
H, Leonard in brick $300.00
E. Hulse   $200.00
A. Login   $50.00
S.B. Steele   $10.00
Thomas Foster   $40.00
A. Green by R. Bennett   $25.00
Phillip Cody   $20.00
Eldridge and M'Cord   $50.00
E.V. Kerr and G. Tate   $10.00
W.W. Dodge   $25.00
W.B. Watts   $25.00
Alfred Carter   $100.00
Geo. L. Davenport   $50.00
Aeth L. Whiting   $25.00
Jas. O. Kelly   $10.00
W. M'Cammon   $30.00
W.W. Whittemore   $25.00
Thomas Dillon   $50.00

I, .John Litcb, agree to give one good, handsome lot in the lower part of Davenport, (in Powers’ addition,) as soon as Davenport shall be made the county seat J. Litch
George Bowers $20.00   John Owens   $50.00 
M. Parmele $20.00   James Rumbold $50.00
John Cronkhite $10.00   Charles Leslie $25.00
C.C. Alvord $10.00   A.L. & J. Beattie $10.00
Wm. M. Moran $5.00   Henry Wright $15.00
W.G. Ruby $10.00   R.S. Craig $10.00
H.J. Chapman $25.00   John W. King $10.00
John F. Boynton $10.00   James M. Bowling $30.00
J.M. Witherwax $50.00   John Evans $10.00
Wm. S. Collins $15.00   John Wilson $100.00
Strong Burnell $20.00   Wm. Nichols $50.00
Asa Hale $10.00   Lewis Ebert $10.00
Timothy Dillon $20.00   J.W. Parker $100.00
John Pope $20.00   A.W. Perry $25.00
Samuel Armitage $5.00   Peter Parker & A. Perry $25.00
Franklin Culver $5.00   George Francis $12.00
Wm. M'Dade $5.00   L.J. Center, for J. Remer $25.00
W.B. Arnold $5.00   L.J. Center $10.00
A.J. Dawes $5.00   James Miller $5.00
D. Hoge $50.00   Isaac Squires $20.00
T.S. Hoge $50.00   Wm. Lovell $10.00
John D. Evans $20.00   John H. Thorington $25.00
Riddle & Morton $100.00   Alex. W. M'Gregor $25.00
George Colt $5.00   Walter B. Warren $10.00
J.M.D. Burrows $50.00   Geo. W. Warren $20.00

I, George Davenport, hereby promise to pay to the county commissioners of Scott county, in lieu of the lots offered above, to aid in erecting the public buildings, the sum of Twelve Hundred Dollars (1,200), should the Commissioners prefer, the same to be paid in installments, as may be required in the progress of the buildings, provided the same shall be erected on Bolivar Square.
Geo. Davenport.

I, Antoine Le Claire, hereby promise to pay to the County Commissioners of the county of Scott, in lieu of the lands and lots offered above, to aid in erecting the public buildings, the sum of Three Thousand Dollars in cash, or its equivalent, should the said commissioners prefer the same, to be paid in such installments as may be required in the progress of the buildings, as witness my hand and seal this 10th day of August, 1840.
Antoine Le Claire, [L. S.]

William Harmon, - $15.00
Henry Powers, - 50.00

At the October elections of this year, party lines began to be drawn. A. C. Dodge was elected Delegate to Congress over Alfred Rich, the Whig candidate, by about one hundred majority. J. W. Parker was elected to the Council over James Grant by majority of only four votes; L. Summers and J.M. Robertson*, Representatives; John D. Evans, Recorder; A, 11. Davenport, Sheriff; Ira Cook, Sr., Treasurer, and E. Cook, Judge of Probate.

The receipts into the Treasury this year were insufficient to meet the expenditures, the amount being only one thousand, six hundred and thirty five dollars, while the expenditures were two thousand, one hundred and twenty-one dollars, and thirty-seven cents.

Business at the close of the year was increasing. There were eight mercantile establishments, four groceries, two hotels, a brewery nearly ready for operation, a large pork house, with cash and goods offered for pork.  Times began to brighten; a market had been established at home for the produce raised by the farmer, buildings had increased, and the population amounted to about six hundred. The times had been severe on the newly settled colony. Money was scarce; the land had been brought into market, and those holding lands subject to pre-emption h id to borrow money at fifty per cent., to swe their homes. The prices current in December were: 
Flour per barrel $5.00 to $5.50   Butter, fresh $0.25
Wheat per barrel $0.50   Tallow $0.12 1/2
Corn per barrel $0.37 to $0.50   Sugar from stores $0.12 1/2
Oats per barrel $0.25 to $0.31   Coffee $0.20
Potatoes per barrel $0.18 to $0.25   Tea $1.00
Onions per barrel $0.25 to $0.37   Molasses per gallon $0.75
Beef, from wagon per lb. 2 to 4   Honey, good strained per gallon $0.75
Pork, from wagon per lb. 3 to 4   Nails, cut, all sizes per lb $0.12 1/2

closed January 2d. There was good sleighing this winter from St. Louis to the Lower Rapids, and throughout the entire State of Illinois, a part of Michigan and Indiana; but here there were not to exceed two inches of snow during the whole winter, nor was there any rain after the first of November. The river opened this year, the 14th of March, and the steamer ‘‘Otter” came up the same day. On the 15th the steamer “Agnes” arrived from St Louis, and the next day both boats left for Galena and Du Buque, navigation being fairly opened but the water very low.

On the 21st of April, 1841, the Mayor, Recorder and Trustees of the town of Davenport passed an Ordinance to raise the license for retailing liquors, from twenty-five to one hundred dollars. J.W. Parker being Mayor.

On the 5th of May, the sale of town lots for the erection of the public buildings took place.

On the 8th of May the first Territorial Whig Convention was held in Davenport. Delegates were present from all the settled counties in the State, except Du Buque and Clayton. They met at the Le Claire House, formed a procession and marched with a band of music, consisting of one bug e and a clarinet, to the “liar, risen Log Cabin,” then just erected on the corner of Third and Main streets. Several speeches were made, when Alfred Rich, Esq., received the nomination, on the fourth ballot, for Delegate to Congress. The Democratic Convention met at Parkhurst, (Le Claire,) on the 19th of June, and nominated A. C. Dodge, who. was elected" by a large majority. The weather in May was cold and backward. Notwithstanding the hard times, and general scarcity of money, buildings of all kinds began to go up, and the town generally was in a flourishing condition. The County-Home and Jail were commenced, and the days of strife and contention seemed to have ended.

There were three frosts only, up to the 14th of November. The river remained in good boating order and steamboats ran till near the close of the year, the weather being mild and beautiful. River closed January 2d. There was good sleighing this winter from St. Louis to the Lower Rapids, and throughout the entire State of Illinois, a part of Michigan and Indiana; but here there were not to exceed two inches of snow during the whole winter, nor was there any rain after the first of November. The river opened this year, the 14th of March, and the steamer ‘‘Otter” came up the same day. On the 15th the steamer “Agnes” arrived from St Louis, and the next day both boats left for Galena and Du Buque, navigation being fairly opened but the water very low.

On the 21st of April, 1841, the Mayor, Recorder and Trustees of the town of Davenport passed an Ordinance to raise the license for retailing liquors, from twenty-five to one hundred dollars. J.W. Parker being Mayor.

On the 5th of May, the sale of town lots for the erection of the public buildings took place.
Joseph M. Robertson emigrated to the Territory of Towa in 1830, and settled at Rockingham. He had made his first location in the West at New Boston, Mercer county. 111., where he remained but a short time. He was a good, sound, practical man in all things. His political views were purely Whig. A farmer and merchant, he was accommodating and possessed a benevolent heart, ever ready to do a kindly act; and for moral and Christian worth, he had no superior. His sterling integrity in all things, both private and public, ever drew around him a host of friends, and he was deservedly popular among his fellow-citizens. He served many sessions in the Territorial Legislature, and died at Iowa City, while a member of that body, in 1844, aged thirty-eight years.
Among the buildings erected this year was the Webb he , and it was considered one of the most extravagant investment of the age. It presented a beautiful appearance from the river, standing alone upon the brow of the bluff, with nothing to obstruct the view, without a solitary house or other improvement in front of it. It is now owned and occupied by J. E. Henry, Esq. The brick building on the corner of Sixth and Brady was erected, the same season, by Strong Burnell. But the largest structure of this year was the old part of the “Worden House,” on Third street, since enlarged. Flour, this year, was sold at five dollars a barrel, and. wheat fifty cents a bushel. Pork was worth but one and a half to two cents a pound.

James Grant and J. M. Robertson were elected Representative and J. W. Parker to the Council. Parker was President of the Council, that session of the Legislature. The financial condition of the county, at the close of 1841, was a revenue received of 87,019.93; and expenditures to the amount of 80,689.99; A. W. Campbell, J. C. Quinn and John Work, Commissioners. A new charter to the town of Davenport was obtained this year from the Legislature. The Court House and Jail were finished and presented to the county free of cost as provided for in the bond given for that purpose.

In November of this year, our little village was visited by a distinguished personage of foreign birth, in the person of the Prince de Joinville. He and his suite took rooms at the Le Claire House.

In August of this year, the “ Davenport Weekly Gazette” issued its first number. Alfred Sanders, Esq., the senior editor, was from Cincinnati, Ohio. He had visited the upper Mississippi the year before in search of a location for life, and most wisely selected Davenport, then but a small village, as his home. None but those who have tried the experiment can realize the trials, hardships and discouragements incident to opening a printing establishment in a little frontier town, away from all resources both financial and mechanical. To enter upon such an enterprise, at such a time in the financial world as was presented in 1841, required no little energy, ambition and perseverance. Such did Alfred Sanders possess, when on the 11th day of August he landed from one of the smallest steamers that ever pushed up our river; the water being so low upon the rapids below, and the engine that ]propelled the little craft so weak that they had to pole over in real Mackinaw style. This arrival was announced and soon the landing was thronged with anixious spectators to behold the new press and its editor. Moved by a spirit of grateful acknowledgment, and a cordial welcome to this new arrival, all hands were eager to assist in landing the press. There being no wharf then built, and the water very low, along plank walk was laid to the boat on which in attempting to carry the press it was precipitated into the Mississippi river, as if to purge it of any of its old sins, and baptize it anew,* before entering upon  the virgin soil of Iowa.

The first number was issued on the 26th of August, and from that day to this, more than eighteen years, not a single number has been missed in its regular publication. When we take into consideration that not only the first out-fit, but the constant supply of paper, ink and other material had to be purchased in the East, and subject to all the delays and dangers of the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, and when we remember that Mr. S. suffered loss and disappointment by having his paper sunk and burned amid the disasters of the steamboat navigation of that day, all his assistants being sick at one time, and he alone having to fill every department of the paper, from writing its editorials and setting type, down to working at the press and rolling for papers—I say, when we consider these discouragements, we must wonder and admire that energy and perseverance which for twenty years, never allowed his subscribers to go with out their weekly news. We believe that no portion of the great West can record a similar instance of deep devotion to their calling, amid such privations and hardships as that of Mr. Sanders to found a standard newspaper in Scott county. When I remember his increasing labor for many years, without the prospects of even a livelihood, and no bright future before him, I feel happy in the privilege here presented of adding my testimony to his faithful services, and wishing him all the enjoyment he may now possess from the fruits of his early struggles.

And no less deserving is he, who amid all these discouragements, stood by his side, not only as a partner, in a pecuniary view, but a constant sharer of all the burdens heaped upon the establishment through the many dark years of its existence. Mr. Levi Davis was the printer; and for neatness and mechanical execution, I hesitate not to say, notwithstanding the difficulties under which he labored, that no establishment of the kind west of the great Lakes can show a file of papers of ten years’ accumulation, like those presented by this office. No man among the early settlers of Davenport is deserving of more credit for faithfulness, industry, and sterling integrity, than Mr. Levi Davis. For nearly ten years after the establishment of the Gazette, it hardly paid expenses, though conducted in the most economical
manner. From the tardy progress of the settlement of the country, its subscription grew slowly; but as the country began to settle and the town to grow, its patronage increased, so that in May 1851, nearly ten years after its commencement, its proprietors felt justified in enlarging it to a seven column paper. Two years after, on the 3d of September, 1853, they converted it into a triweekly, and the following year, on the 16th of October, 1854, they began to issue the first daily paper ever published in this portion of the State. As a daily, it started out under the most favor, able auspices, and has continued to increase in circulation ever since, notwithstanding the financial depression of 1857, and the unusual amount of opposition it has experienced in having three other daily papers to contend with.

In 1855, they introduced the first steam press ever put in operation in Iowa, a large size Taylor and Hoe press, which is still doing good service. The weekly cash receipts of the office now average more than the yearly cash receipts did, for seven years, after its first establishment.

1842.—On the 15th of February the Scott County Temperance Society was organized, Thos. S. Hoge, President, and Charles Leslie, Secretary.

The river closed the 27th of December, and opened the 2d of March. The season was good, crops abundant, and well gathered Good winter wheat was sold at thirty-seven to forty cents, and Spring at thirty cents. The best quality of flour was four dollars and a half a barrel. Flour sold the same Autumn in Chicago at three, and in St. Louis at two dollars and seventy-five cents a barrel. Building continued, and settlers were daily arriving. Produce of all kinds was low. There was no money in circulation. Everything was barter in trade.

On the 8th of October of this year the Iowa Sun issued its last number.

A. C. Fulton, Esq., arrived here in July of this year, and opened a store on Front street, between Main and Harrison. On the 4th of August, by census taken, the town contained eight hundred and seventeen inhabitants. The April term of the Circuit Court continued in session only eight days, and adjourned for want of business, David Hoge, Clerk. In the election of this year Robert Christie was elected to the Council and J.M. Robertson to the House. Pork sold this Autumn as low as one dollar and a quarter to a dollar and a half a hundred pounds. The same prices ruled in Chicago and Alton. Messrs. J. Seaman, J. M. D. Burrows, A.C. Fulton and others, purchase«l pork in exchange for goods some cash was paid. The balance in the Treasury at the close of the year was four hundred and eighty four dollars and forty-eight cents. John Work, Otho G. McLain and John C. Quinn were Commissioners.

1843.—The river opened the 1Oth of April, The Winter of 1842-3 will long be remembered as the “cold Winter”. There were two months good sleighing. The ice in the river was two feet thick. A Du Buque paper stated that, with the exception of a very few days, the mercury stood at twenty degrees below zero for nearly four months, and that for several weeks of that time it stood at thirty-five and thirty-nine degrees below zero. Although the crops were abundant, yet on account of the intense cold, and want of sufficient hay and shelter, a great many cattle died.

Emigration continued to pour in, and a general progress of the town was perceptible, notwithstanding the scarcity ot money and the cheapness of' produce. There were seventeen brick houses erected this year, and many frame ones. Seven churches now adorned the town. G. C. R. Mitchell was elected Representative this year, and James Thorington, Judge of Probate. The expenditures of the county this year exceeded the receipts nine hundred and five dollars and eighty-two cents.

J. M. D. Burrows commenced shipping produce this Autumn to St. Louis in keel boats. On the 21st of October, he loaded one with thirty-eight tons of vegetables, and the following week started another for St. Louis with thirty-five tons.

But little of interest took place during the year 1844. The river opened on the 24th of February, and navigation commenced. It had been a very open Winter, much of it like Spring.

In May, there was a corporation election, for officers. Gilbert McKown, Jr., was elected Marshal; Nathaniel Squires, Supervisor; John Evans, Treasurer; N. Squires, Assessor; John Pope, Clerk; L.B. Collamer, Weigh Master, and D.G. Eldridge, Fire Warden. The June rise in the Mississippi flooded the whole country along the river bottoms. The river was higher than ever before known.

By a census taken of the county in June, it was found to contain one thousand, seven hundred and fifty souls. The fourth of July was celebrated in due form. The citizens convened at the Court House, when the exercises were opened with prayer by the Rev. A.B. Hitchcock reading of the Declaration of Independene by Jas. Grant, Esq., and oration by Dr. Gatchell, of Cincinnati, then a resident of this place. A sumptuous repast was served under the large spreading oaks, that then adorned the brow of our beautiful bluffs.

A Convention assembled at Iowa City, October 7th, for the formation of a Constitution, preparatory to our entrance into the Union as a State. Ebenezer Cook, James Grant and Andrew W. Campbell were the candidates elected to attend.

The wheat crop of 1844 was large and of good quality. Flour from three to four dollars a barrel. Wheat from forty to fifty cents a bushel. Corn and oats twenty-five cents.

The financial condition of the country at the close of the year was flattering. Expenditures $1,757.78, and the receipts into the Treasury were $2,503.80. J.C. Quinn, Asahel Hubbard and C.G. McLain, Commissioners; John Pope, Clerk. County orders were at par and cash in the Treasury. The crop of wheat raised this year in the county was estimated at one hundred thousand bushels, and there were no mills for flouring in the city yet. The population at the close of the year in the town was estimated at eight hundred or a thousand. The river closed on the 4th of February, but was in no condition for crossing, and on the 20th of the same month broke loose, and the steamer Lynx made her appearance at our wharf. The New Haven, that had been moored in the Rock Island slough, came over the next day, and both boats started for Galena, the river being clear of ice, the weather as balmy as Spring. Wild geese and ducks were flying north, and the Winter gently merged into Spring.

1845.—The most stirring incident of this year was the murder of Col. George Davenport, upon Rock Island.

The April election passed off very quietly. L. Summers (Loeo) was elected to the Council, and J.M. Robertson (Whig) to the House. John Forest, Esq, received the appointment of Postmaster, in place of D.C. Eldridge, resigned. At the August election J.C. Quinn was again elected Commissioner; A.H. Miller, Treasurer; W. Barrows, Surveyor, and Stephen Hawley, Assessor.

The country upon both sides of the river had for several years been infested with a lawless gang of freebooters, with their main headquarters probably at Nauvoo, having places of rendezvous upon Rock River, Ill., and upon Sugar Creek, in Cedar county, and in Linn county, Iowa. The fugitives from justice in other States had fled to the western wilds for protection, and organized themselves into regular bands for horse stealing, counterfeiting, burglary, robbery and murder. They had advanced so far in their grand schemes for crime and escape, that in some places Justices of the Peace, and other officers of the county, were elected to office by their intrigue and corruption, and many men of good standing in community became associated with them, Belleview, in Jackson county, had been the scene of bloodshed and murder, in an attempt to arrest some of the banditti. Ogle county, in Illinois, had become so infested with this gang, that at the elections they boldly came forward and proclaimed their strength and determination to rule the county. The court-house and jail were burnt, the Sheriff of the county waylaid and shot, and individuals who dared to say aught against the gang, were marked as victims of this marauding band of robbers.

At this stage of things, a meeting of the whole county was called by some of the principal law-abiding citizens, when it was resolved to clear the land of the desperadoes. One of the ringleaders, a Mr. --- and his three sons were taken, tried by a self-constituted jury, condemned and shot the same day. One other of the gang was executed, when the balance fled the country. But Nauvoo was the great depot, and the Mississippi river the great thorough fare.

The murder and robbery of Col. Davenport, one of the oldest citizens in the community, in broad daylight and in full view of our town, sent a thrill of terror to every heart, and made citizens tremble for the safety of themselves and property. So foul a crime attended by such appalling circumstances, aroused the energies of every one to assist in discovering the murderers. Public meetings were called in Davenport and Rock Island to devise means to arrest the fugitives. Companies of horsemen were sent in every direction; the islands and bluffs were searched, parties went up and down the river, but no trace could be found, nor were any signs left, by which the murderers could be followed. A reward of fifteen hundred dollars was offered by George L. Davenport, followed directly after by one of one thousand dollars by the Governor of Illinois; but for weeks no trace could be obtained of them. Subsequently it was ascertained that the robbers had been secreted for some ten days in the bluffs previous to the attack, awaiting an opportunity, which they had on the 4th of July, while the whole household of Col. Davenport was at Stephenson attending the celebration. Mr. Davenport lived long enough to relate the circumstances attending the robbery. He had been fearful of robbers, and noticed some suspicious looking persons around the towns of Davenport and Stephenson, and had taken the precaution to fasten his doors and keep arms in readiness. He had but a few moments before the attack been to the well for water, and fastened the door on his return. He was seated in his arm chair in his sitting room, when he heard a noise in the back part of the house, and opening a door that led there he was met by three men, one of whom exclaimed “seize him, Chunky,” and at the same moment he received a ball from a pistol through the fleshy part of the thigh.  Mr. D. made an effort to reach his pistols that lay upon the mantle, but was laid hold of and bound with strips of bark, and blindfolded.  The key of his safe was obtained, and for a few moments he was left alone, when the robbers, unable to unlock the safe, returned and took Mr. D up stairs where the safe was, and compelled him to unlock it. In this effort Mr. D. seems to have had much difficulty, as from loss of blood he was not able to walk, and he was carried or pulled up the stairs, leaving prints of blood upon the passage way and stair case all the way up, where he had put his hands for support. He was laid upon the bed up stairs after unlocking the safe, and showing the robbers where some other money was, in a drawer in the library. Here he fainted, and was revived by water being poured upon him. He was choked and otherwise tortured in mind and body to induce him to reveal where more treasure could be found. Upon this point John Long, who afterwards paid the penalty of this murder upon the gallows at Rock Island, stated upon the stand, that no such abuse was offered to Mr. D.; that he himself, went to the well for water and poured it upon him to revive him; that it was not intended to commit murder, but that the pistol of Fox, who shot him, went off accidentally. But Mr. Davenport said before his death, that they held a controversy about the disposition of him before they left, some being for killing him and burning the house, and others for leaving him as he was. The latter being the determination of the majority of them, they hastily fled.

The only booty they obtained was about six hundred dollars in money, a gold watch, chain and seals, a double barreled gun and a few other articles of minor importance.


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