Shelby County Indiana
Memorials of the Clarke Family
FORMERLY OF THE
COUNTY OF NORTHAMPTON,
IN GREAT BRITAIN,
Their Emigration to the West and Settlement in
the Southwest Part of
Shelby County, Indiana.
Originally Written in the Year 1845.
Rewritten and Revised in the Year 1874.
Printed at the Indianapolis Printing and Publishing House
1 8 7 5.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
PREFACE TO THE SECOND PRINTING
Owing to the
deteriorating condition of copies of this work from the original printing,
published in 1875, and wishing to preserve the account of his life, as set forth
by James Clarke late into his old age; so that future generations may continue
to enjoy and benefit from these recollections; to this and a second printing has
been undertaken. This task has been accomplished, not as in the first
printing, with the use of a typesetter and a printing press; but rather with the
more modern convenience of an IBM compatible computer and Epson inkjet matrix
printer. The original has been found owing, in most cases, to minor
limitations of the word processor used, or to such typographical errors as have
escaped notice during proofreading.
The author, James Clarke,
subsequent to the publican of his work, lived for eleven years more, until he
passed from this life on January 1, 1886. He is buried in Mr. Auburn in
Shelby county, Indiana.
Inquiries regarding this
printing may be advanced to Florence Clarke Tait of Cincinnati, Ohio.
December 30, 1986.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
There is either an innate
propensity of mind amongst the human family, when allowed freedom of thought and
expansion, to exercise that faculty to the fullest extent; so that there is no
idea, however strange, no speculation, however wild, nor any belief, however
absurd, but what has been broached and swallowed by different sections of the
human family at various periods of the world's history; or else there are some
men who, wishing to be distinguished from their fellows, and to have their names
handed down to posterity as the leaders of sects or heresies, who torture their
brains to invent systems hitherto unknown, and theological dogmas never before
thought of. These varying ideas, too, are often far removed from reason
and revelation, as well as from the region of human comprehension, such as the
nature and manner of existence of the Deity, his secret counsels, etc., and
other subjects which, not being revealed, are not profitable to discuss,
inasmuch as they are beyond human comprehension. This remark is equally
applicable to the Athanasian and Nicene creeds, as developed by the Council of
Nice, or parts of the Westminster Confession as composed by a number of divines
assembled for political purposes by an English Parliament, as to the sublime,
mystical speculations of the Rev. W. C.
HISTORY OF SECTS
CHAPTER THE FIRST.
But the inquiry is now,
Who is, or was, the Rev. W. C.? and what were his abstract speculations in
theology? The following narrative will unfold:
About ninety years ago
(1874) the theological writings of Emanuel Swedenborg began
to be extensively circulated in England among the numerous readers of works, in
which are to be found many sublime ideas, mixed up with abstract metaphysical
speculations with wonderful relations of the realities of the invisible world,
it is not surprising there should be some believers. These believers
included persons of all classes, and even some divines of the Church of
England. One of the most noted of this class was the Rev. John Clowes,
Rector of St. John's Church, in Manchester. This gentleman (whom I once
heard preach) was, as far as my information extends, of a very amiable
disposition, and spent the greatest part of a long life in translating from the
original Latin the voluminous writings of his favorite author, and in writing
tracts, sermons and essays, elucidating and defending the "heavenly
doctrines of the New Jerusalem." And it is indeed remarkable that he was
suffered to remain as a minister of the Church of England as by law established,
and even to draw a large salary, while teaching the inculcating doctrines at
variance in many respects with the XXXIX Articles.
About the year 1795 this
worthy clergyman had a curate, or deputy preacher, under him also a believer in
the reveries of Emanual Swedenborg, by name William Cowherd.
This personage, who was a native of the north of England, was a man of extensive
reading and high classical attainments. He was also remarkable for
possessing traits of character essentially different and at variance with each
other: capable of being highly pleasing in conversation, he was often
stern and morose; able to reason justly, yet full often taking his premises for
granted on the most untenable grounds; professing to be a follower of the humble
Savior, he was yet highly overbearing and dictatorial; whilst denying himself
the indulgence of animal food and intoxicating liquors, he indulged himself in
all the costly niceties and luxuries the vegetable kingdom would afford; calling
himself a Bible Christina, he yet would twist and translate that Bible to suit
his own extravagant fancies; of an awkward appearance and forbidding manners, he
yet had the art of obtaining considerable influence over many; in short, he
appears to have fully understood his own character, from the inscription he
ordered to be engraven upon his tombstone:
"All feared, none lived, and few understood."
Which inscription was engraven upon a marble monument erected to his memory
after his death, which happened in the year 1816.
But to return to the year
1795: for a time our two preachers appeared to harmonize very well
together, but soon a difficulty arose whether it was about some metaphysical
abstractions incomprehensible by either; or whether our curate was tired of
playing second fiddle, when he thought himself competent to lead an orchestra;
or whether he presumed to pay his addresses to Mr. Clowes' sister against her
brother's wishes, I know not, but the fact is certain that they parted; and as
Lot, when he separates from his brother Abraham, cast his eyes over the fruitful
and well watered plain of Jordan; so W. Cowherd, casting his eyes across the
river Irwell, beheld the populous town of Salford, where he concluded to cast
Being possessed of some
property, he purchased a lot of land, part of which he laid off for burial lots,
erecting upon the rest a nest and commodious house of worship, with a convenient
dwelling-house adjoining. His house of worship he dignified with the title
of Christ-Church, and here he employed himself in preaching and building up a
religious society, occasionally practicing medicine (1800).
Eight years passed away
after the building of the aforesaid house, and a moderate sized congregation had
been gathered together, when our preacher, either convinced of some of his
former errors, or wishing to differ from the rest of his brethren of the New
Jerusalem; or else wishing to see how far his influence extended among his
disciples; or lastly, being ambitious of heading a new sect, and of handing his
name down to posterity as one whose labors contributed to effect a mighty
revolution in the world and form a new era; broached several new ideas, which
may be summed up in the following postulate and conclusions:
Postulatum 1st. --
The eating of animal food, and consequently the killing of animals for food, is
contrary to the design of the Creator when he formed man; therefore the people
of God in ancient times never made use of the article; and by consequence all
those passages of scripture, which hold forth the idea, are incorrectly
translated from the original and ought to be amended.
Postulatum 2nd. --
Inasmuch as the Lord's people never made use of animal food, they could not have
slain real animals for sacrifice. Therefore, all those parts of scripture
which allude to the same, are incorrect and need revising; for according to our
preacher's idea, the Jewish sacrifices consisted, first, of money stamped with
the image of animals, bearing their name; and secondly, as the oriental nations
made use of the skins of animals, to keep various articles in, or as bottles to
hold water or other liquids; or even sometimes cooked their food in them;
therefore, the skins of such animals, with the contents either raw or cooked,
presented to the Lord, were the real sacrifices of the Jewish nation; a most
absurd and far-fetched idea.
Postulatum 3d. --
Wars are directly contrary to Christian charity therefore, the ancient Jews and
Gentiles who were not Christians, never carried on any; so then those places in
the Bible that speak of wars and fightings ought to be revised, so as to
represent theological debates, doubtless as bloodless, and conducted as those
which Alexander Campbell held with the modern advocates of
human traditions. How to fix those passages which speak of the numbers
slain, the cities sacked and burnt, was difficulty to our theologian.
Postulatum 4th. --
It is taken for granted, that the Patriarichal and Jewish dispensations were
equal if not superior to Christianity; therefore, the standard of morality must
have been as high or higher in those ages, and by a consequence, all those great
personages who stand recorded on the pages of inspiration, as guilty of various
crimes, have been libeled by the translators; for instance, Cain did not kill
Abel, he only excommunicated or anathematized him -- Noah did not get drunk --
Abraham was not the father of Ishmael by his maid-servant, he only adopted her
child as his son -- Lot did not commit incest, he only adopted his daughters'
children -- Jacob had only one wife -- Solomon had not so many concubines --
Ehud did not assassinate Eglon, king of Moab -- Joshua did not exterminate so
many nations, and so on and so forth.
Besides these there were
various other postulata and conclusions, not reducible to the forgoing heads;
such as that Adam and Eve were not our first parents -- the serpent that tempted
them was an Hindoo fakir -- the deluge was not universal, et.; besides various
abstruse speculations concerning the Trinity, of which we can not here speak;
the localities and locations of the spiritual worlds -- the septennial
judgments; from all which we may judge, that the person who made the Scriptures
speak just what he pleased, well deserved the name he now assumed, that of
"Bible Christian," or rather Bible Twistian.
No sooner had our
preacher broached these new-fangled ideas, than, as might be expected, there was
a schism among the people of his congregation. However, it is probable
that the far greater part of his flock would have allowed them, had it not been
for the practical part of the theory, I mean the proposal to adopt the doctrine
of abstinence as inculcated by the teacher. Many however were found to
kick up at the plan, which was not indeed surprising, for without charging the
dissentients with making their appetite their god, we may readily suppose, that
no one without very cogent reasons, would adopt a plan which was
calculated to make so wide a distinction between themselves and the rest
of mankind. However, there were some that adopted it with all the heat,
and the plan itself was fancied to promise so much benefit to the human family,
that in their church register, opposite the name of each member, was written the
date of time when he or she commenced abstaining.
A CONTINUATION OF THE CHAPTER ON
CONTANING THE HISTORY OF NUNC LICET.
Most of these
dissentients being thorough-going Swedenborgians, and probably being somewhat
displeased at our teacher's supposed deviations from the doctrines of their
favorite author, and possessing some men of property, being afterwards joined by
some more of Cowherd's disciples, whom as will be hereafter related, had had
their hides lacerated by too close shearing, determined to erect a house of
worship of their own. For this purpose they purchased a piece of ground
about the size of the burial ground of Christ-Church, from which they had
separated, and erected thereon a building, to which they gave the name of
"New Jerusalem Temple;" it was however familiarly known as
"Beef-Steak Chapel," some wag acquainted with the circumstances of
their secession from Cowherd, having written on the wall one night with chalk
while the edifice was erecting, this inscription: "Beef-Steak Chapel,
or Cowherd done over." Over the door of the temple, besides the date
of the first and second Advents (1814-57, I think) were engraven these words,
"Nunc Licet," which inscription, taken from one of Swedenborg's
visions in which he describes the New Jerusalem Church under the figure of a
temple, over the door of which was written the same words, which he explains to
signify, "Now it is allowable to enter into the mysteries of
faith;" which inscription I say was somewhat of a puzzler to the
uninitiated. Such of them as had any knowledge of Latin, knew that the
words "Nunc Licet" signified "Now it is lawful or allowable,
" they therefore supposed it menat, "Now it is lawful to eat
beef-steaks," beef being the naimal food chiefly used in that part of the
world. To this supposition our preacher alludes in the following
pasquinade, in which he vented his spleen on the dissentients, in the form of a
sermon on these words of Paul, "Let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we
die," which as near as I can recollect, after so many years, is as follows:
brethren, absolute drunkenness, should be avoided as scandalous even in a New
Church man. It is therefore advisable, that no one of us be seen to drink
at any time, as much as two full quarts of brothers Mottram's tenpenny; a single
pint of his, or any other beer equally potent, may in my humble opinion be
safely taken in public by any of us, without fear of giving offense to God, when
we give none to many. Of wine, too, which has an
excellent correspondency, and should be drank in preference by ministers, no one
should exceed the moderate quantum of one-half of what usually intoxicates a
strong man. With respect to ardent spirits, as from their high price at
present, they may be considered as purchasable only by ladies and gentlemen, who
well know how to guard appearances, they may be allowed two-thirds of an
"As to the eating of
animal food, that we can prove, not indeed from the equivalent writings of
our heaven-taught scribe, to the 'Nunc Licet," that is to say 'now
allowable,' let his words be herd with becoming reverence: 'Eating the
flesh of animals, considered in itself is somewhat proface; for the people of
the most ancient time, never on any account killed animals or ate the flesh; but
subsisted wholly on fruits, grain and pulse, especially on bread made of wheat,
and the mild of their flocks and hers. To kill animals and eat their
flesh, seemed to them unlawful, yea as something bestial. But in process
of time, when man began to grow fierce as a wild beast, yea much fiercer, then
indeed they began to slay animals and to eat their flesh; and forasmuch as man's
nature and quality became of such sort, the killing and eating of animals was
permitted, and it is at this day permitted." = SWEDENBORG'S ARCANA
CAELESTIA, No. 1022.
"It would be
superfluous, brethren, to enquire how the Baron came by such positive and
comforting information; since you know it is firmly believed among us, that he
was taught all things by immediate inspiration. Here beloved
brethren, it is as plain as words can make it, that flesh meat was allowed in
the beginning in consequence of sin, and so long as a sinful, brutal nature
continues in man, it is still permitted. And forasmuch as it is the
testimony of our infallible author, that hereditary evil can never be entirely
extirpated from man, no not in heaven itself, we may consider ourselves as
graciously permitted to kill and eat the bodies of animals here and their souls
hereafter. Let us therefore, brethren, unmortified needlessly in our
corporeal appetites as the Lord's spiritual freedmen, 'eat and drink, for
to-morrow we die.'"
There is but little more
to add to the history of "Nunc Licet" except that in spite of
inscriptions and pasquinades, the building was finished, and Robert Hindmarah,
formerly printer to his Royal Highness of Prince of Wales (late George IV), and
distinguished as a translator of some of the Baron's writings, and author of
some works in defense of the same, and sneeringly styled by Cowherd
"Defender of the faith and so forth," to whom I have recited many a
Latin lesson out of Cornelius Nepos, was appointed first minister.
Note. -- I have occupied
so much space with the above matters from the consideration, that my father's
acquaintance with Cowherd (or Sherbert, as he was called by the boys, from his
fondness for the oriental drink of that name) was a part of that chain of events
which determined our emigration to America. My father was engaged in
mercantile business; Cowherd declaimed against it, and in favor of an
agricultural life; that life could only be enjoyed in America; Cowherd
prophesied that his labors were destined to benefit (?) American, so when the
difficulties of the times thickened around us to America we came.
I will here introduce
another prophecy of Cowherd's, delivered January 23, 1814, in a discourse on
Luke xix:13: "Before fifty years are over there will not be a house
either in Manchester or Salford." Sixty years have passed, and the
houses still stand; indeed the place contains four times the inhabitants of that
IN WHICH SOME NOTICE IS TAKEN OF
PROMINENT CHARACTER AMONG THE BIBLE-CHRISTIANS.
Sixty years have now
elapsed since the erection of Nunc Licet, and for anything I know to the
contrary, the building is still standing, re-echoing each Lord's day the
heavenly doctrines of the New Jerusalem; we shall therefore leave these
Dissenters from Bible-Christianity, and return to those who professed and
practiced the newly-discovered orthodox faith.
And here it will be
necessary to introduce another personage; one who adopted the new theories with
all the heart, and who, careless of consequences, labored to recommend them to
the world. One who endured many trials, and passed through many
difficulties, which he bore with unshaken fortitude, who always practiced what
he sincerely thought to be right, though all mankind should have opposed him;
one of so versatile a genius as to be capable of excelling in whatever he turned
his hand to, whether it was attending behind the counter of a store, or
instructing youth, or attending to mechanical business; yet never successful in
scraping together this world's goods. Though of a absolute in his family,
which was well governed; a sincere friend, often to his own loss; a good citizen
so far as conscience allowed him, and I may add a devoted Christian,
notwithstanding his unorthodox opinions; his errors were of the head and not of
the heart. Such a man was my father.
James Clarke was born
June 27, 1778, at Denshanger, a village near Stoney Stratford in
Buckinghamshire. His father, John Clarke, was a farmer in good
circumstances, as had been his ancestors for several generations. Through
his mother (Ann Lapidge Smith) he claimed relationship with the poets and
writers Dryden and Swift. The family having removed to Abthorpe, near
Towcester, in the county of Northampton, while he was quite young, he received
the rudiments of an English education in the village school of that place.
The family consisted of
six daughters and two sons, my father being the youngest. I never saw any
of the family excepting uncle John, who was at Manchester once or
twice. He farmed at East Haddon and Collingtree, near Northamptom, many
years, but failing in business, at the request of his son he went over to
Ireland, where he resided at Gorey, County Wexford, and there he died, 1841,
aged 65. One of the daughters, named Sophia, married a man
named Atterbury; another, Abigail, Daniel Roe. I
have forgotten the names of most of the others.
The family, and most of
the connections, were what was called "church and king," that is to
say, they were supporters of the church as by law established, and took part
with the government in every measure, right or wrong. The French
Revolution broke out while my father was yet young, and party politics ran very
high in England, yet my grandfather was rather moderate, though he was somewhat
horrified one day at Dryden Smith, a cousin of my grandmother's, who was of
opposite politics, entering the harvest field, and wishing the sickles in the
bowels of the Prussians who were then invading the French territory. At
what period of life my father embraced liberal principles, I am ignorant, though
I have reason to suppose he must have been quite young; it is however certain,
that before he emigrated to America, his republican principles were so strong,
and his expression of them so bold and decided, as to render him obnoxious to
the partisans of the ruling party.
His religious sentiments
probably did not experience a change till some time after leaving home, as the
last words addressed to him by his fond mother, at nineteen years of age, when
he entered as clerk in a dry-goods store at Northampton, were : "Jemmy,
I hope you will stick to the church." It is probable, however, that
he early imbibed a dislike to a hireling clergy, from a circumstance he once
related to me. In the rear of my grandfather's garden, stood a venerable
plum tree, which being generally well loaded with fruit, was a place of great
resort to young James at the proper season. One day the parson of the
parish, who occupied an adjoining house, came in a great splutter to his
father's complaining of the robbery of said plum tree by James, before he had
received his regular share of tithes from the same.
During my father's
residence with the haberdasher of linen draper of Northampton, he had
considerable leisure to improve himself by reading, and amongst other books, the
Bible was not forgotten; for two years afterwards, while acting as clerk in the
store of a Mr. Benton, of Manchester, being observed by his employer to be much
engaged in the study of the Scriptures, was thus addressed by him:
"Mr. Clarke, you will read that book till you will not have a penny in your
pocket." Such are the ideas of men of the world, who fancy nothing to
be worthy of attention, unless it will put pence into the pocket.
Having become early
deeply impressed with the realities of another life, and having formed the idea
(which is without solid foundation) that nothing hinders the Divine
communications to man, as in former times, but moral corruption; he was prepared
to receive the testimony of any one who had any feasible pretensions to Divine
illuminations. About this time, one Richard Brothers
was handing forth what he called prophecies, in the city of London.
Whether or not my father had full faith in the authenticity of his revelations I
know not, but it was certain he was somewhat inclined to believe; but Brothers
having his prophecies brought to a close by being lodged in a lunatic asylum,
his revelations passed away. However, soon after my father fell in with a
work which attracted his attention; it was entitled, "A Treatise on Heaven
and Hell, and of the Wonderful Things therein, as Heard and Seen, by the
honorable Emanuel Swedenborg." The many new and sublime ideas, the
wonderful relations, the able manner in which several points are argued,
together with the irresistably to compel faith; and becoming soon after
acquainted with other writings by the same author, he became a firm
believer. About the year 1806-7 he became acquainted with the inventor of
Bible-Christianity, at that time considered a preacher of the New Jerusalem; and
when he broached the new ideas as before related, heartily received them.
While these changes in
his religious views were going on, his temporal affairs underwent various
mutations. After a residence of two years at Northampton, and spending
some little time at a place called Chesterfield, in Derbyshire, he came to
Manchester, where, after being employed a while as clerk to a Mr. Benton,
he commenced business himself in partnership with a Mr. Randall.
While attending behind the counter of his store, he first saw and formed the
acquaintance of my mother, Miss Frances Chesshyre. She was
the daughter of Thomas and Alice Chesshyre,
of a respectable and rather aristocratic family. Her father claimed
some connection with the Barons of Halton in the county of Chester; a
cousin of his married the Hon. Mr. Rawdon, a brother or cousin
of Lord Rawdon, well known in American Revolutionary history;
another cousin married the Hon. Mr. Kenyon, a brother of Lord
Kenyon's. (I was once at the old lay's house in Salford.) Her
mother claimed some relationship to the royal family of Stuarts, through the Stanleys
or Earls of Derby. Accordingly, in the year 1745, when Prince
Charles Stuart, commonly known as the Pretender, passed through Manchester, her
family being zealous Jacobites, took an active interest in his
proceedings. They were the parents of seventeen children, of whom my
mother was the youngest. Some of their sons attained to some distinction;
the oldest, John, having entered the navy, rose at length to the rank
of Admiral, and died at an advanced age.
The old gentleman had
formerly been engaged extensively in the woolen manufacture, but having credited
extensively to Americans, before the war of the Revolution broke out, that even,
by depriving him of his returns, was a heavy loss to him; inspiring him ever
afterwards with a hearty hatred of Americans and republicanism. "The
Americans," said my grandmother to me one day, "are naughty folks;
they used to transport criminals to American, like they do now to Botany Bay,
and that is the reason why the people there are so bad"!!
Notwithstanding her aristocratic prejudices, she was a very worthy woman, and
lived with her husband in the holy bonds of matrimony sixty-five years, and died
at the age of eighty-four. The old man survived till near ninety (89
years, 9 months).
Soon after my father's
marriage, which took place November 10, 1803, he commenced business himself,
which, however, he soon found to be a losing business. His capital was
small, his rent and taxes enormously high--ninety pounds (over four hundred
dollars) a year; so after struggling along for a year or tow, his creditors got
out a commission of bankruptcy against him; the whole of his property was placed
in the hands of assignees for their benefit, who finally declared a dividend of
only four shillings and sixpence in the pound (22-1/2 per cent.). This, as
may be well supposed, was a serious misfortune to young beginners in the
world. His creditors however had such confidence in his integrity, that
they gave up to him most of his household furniture.
A Mr. Barrett, who had
married a youthful acquaintance of my mother's, having been attacked with
insanity, my father was employed to attend to his business. Soon after, my
grandfather Clarke deceased, leaving my father such a sum of money as
enabled him to re-commence business in the wholesale line, in partnership with a
certain Mr. Livesey: what became of some of his money will be revealed in
the next chapter.
Note.--The following is a
list of the children of Thomas Chesshyre and his wife, Alice (Gothard) Chesshyre:
John -- The Admiral.
Edward -- An attorney in
Manchester. Died childless and wealthy.
Elizabeth -- Deaf and dumb.
Died unmarried at an advanced age.
Alice -- Died in infancy.
Alice -- Married John Walker, a
prosperous attorney of Manchester.
Mary -- A good old lady, died
unmarried at an advanced age.
Sarah -- Married at fifty years of
age a Mr. Watmough of Liverpool.
Martha -- Married John Owen, an
attorney of Manchester.
Ann -- Married Mr. Molineus; left tow
children, Edward and Elizabeth.
Thomas -- Died unmarried.
Robert -- Died before my
recollection, leaving three sons, Edward, Samuel and William, and daughter,
Susannah. William died in Jamaica; the others all married, without any
James -- Died in infancy.
Frances -- Same.
Charles -- Followed the business of a
weaver; died a poor man, leaving two daughters.
Harriet -- Married Mr. Nichol, a
bookseller of London; left a tolerably large family; one of her daughters
emigrated to Adelaide, in Australia; a son, a surgeon, somewhere in Candad;
another son had a post in the Treasury; another daughter, wife of a farmer in
Frances -- My mother.
List of the
children of John Clarke and his wife Ann.
Abigail -- Married Daniel Roe, a
baker of Ecton.
Sophia -- Married Mr. Atterbury.
Elizabeth -- Died young.
A daughter -- Name unknonw, Susan, I
think, married Mr. Abbot.
Same -- Married Mr. Gray.
Nancy -- Died after being confined to
her bed by paralysis many years.
John -- Died near Gorey, County
James -- My father.
is a list of the children of James and Frances Clarke.
||Nov. 18, 1804
||Chapel Street, Salford, Manchester
||April 22, 1806
|Feb. 19, 1809
||Jan. 15, 1808
||Hodson Street, Salford.
|Sept. 11, 1853
||July 2, 1809
||Boond Street, Salford.
|Dec. 19, 1813
||Feb. 1, 1811
||Hulme, near Manchester.
||Nov. 21, 1812
||Oct. 13, 1814
||Oldfield Road, Salford.
||May 25, 1816
||Hulme, near Manchester.
|June 27, 1819
||Dec. 26, 1818
||July 16, 1820
||Near Lebanon, Ohio.
||July 18, 1822
||Nov. 1, 1824
||Oct. 29, 1826
||Jackson Tp., Shelby Co., Indiana.
MEMORIALS OF THE CLARKE FAMILY.
IN WHICH IS RELATED SOME OF THE
WHICH BEFEL BIBLE CHRISTIANITY, FOR WANT
AND THE MEANS BY WHICH IT WAS RELIEVED.
I have before related, that in the
first year of the nineteenth century, Billy Cowherd purchased a lot of ground
for a burying ground, upon which he erected a house for worship and a commodious
dwelling-house. About the year 1807, he purchased a still larger lot in a
place called Hulme, a suburb of Manchester, upon which he likewise erected a
house of worship, with a large and commodious school-room attached, and
twenty-four dwelling-houses arranged in rather a fantastic manner. Two
years afterwards he built on his first purchase another large and commodious
school-house, which was dignified with the title of "Salford Grammar School
and Academy of Sciences." The erection of all these buildings,
requiring more of the needful than was forthcoming, our church builder was in
danger of experiencing some of the sweets of the law. In this exigency,
which threatened the ruin of Bible-Christianity, three members of his
congregation came forward to save him and his cause from ruin, by endorsing his
bills. Solomon tells us somewhere, "that he who is surety shall smart
for it." and so our trio found it, for they had the money to pay. One
of them, named Thomas Leeming, thinking the shears clipped too
close, left the church, and became a prominent member of Nunc Licet.
The second person, Joseph Brotherton, had wealth sufficient
to stand the shock; he was a worthy man of mild and affable manners, the owner
of an extensive cotton manufactory; after his instructor's death, he expounded
the Bible according to the doctrines of the Bible-Christianity from the pulpit
of the founder; at a still later date represented the town of Salford in the
Imperial Parliament. My father, who was the third sufferer, sometimes
blamed him for taking care of himself in the transaction, thinking that he ought
to have borne the brunt with himself in proportion to their respective
properties. My father's losses were near fifteen hundred dollars, and the
immediate consequence was, that he was obliged to borrow from a friend of his
residing at Addingham in Yorkshire, Mr. Ambrose Dean, a like amount, in
order to fulfill his engagements in the partnership with Mr. Livesey. This
debt was often the source of great uneasiness to my father, but it was finally
arranged, that whenever the church was able to raise the amount of money Mr.
Cowherd owed him, that it was to be appropriated to pay that debt.
The obligations our
preacher was under to these gentlemen, did not at all lessen his independent
bearing towards them, for finally, upon some dispute with my father, he turned
him out of his house. His spleen was not satisfied, when he was out of
humor with an individual, by venting it on him alone, but extended to all the
connections of that person. The day after the affray happened, as I was
reciting my lesson to him in his school-room, happening to make a blunder, he
fell upon me: "Take your hat," said he, "and leave the
school, for like your father, you will never learn anything." I had
another example of the same disposition, I think some time afterwards. One
of the teachers in the Academy, William Metcalfe, a good
scholar, and a young man of mild temper, happening to leave the Academy to
reside in Yorkshire (where Mr. A. Dean undertook to erect an edifice, where
either Swedenborgianism or Bible-Christianity might be taught, as the case might
be), under circumstances which displeased the Right Reverend gentleman, he could
not bear that those around him should associate with him. During the
Christmas vacation in the Academy in the year 1813, Joseph Wright,
an under-teacher in the Academy, and brother-in-law to the said Metcalfe,
thought proper to pay him, and some other relatives he had living in Yorkshire,
a visit, in company with John Chorlton, a student in the
Academy and a classmate of mine. The scarlet fever happening to rage very
fatally in Manchester at that time, even having made an inroad into our own
family, carrying off one of my little brothers, my father determined to send me
along with them, to pass the Christmas holidays and be out of the way of the
contagion. Upon our return to school, an arrangement was made that the
first class, to which I belonged, should study their lessons in a lower room of
the Academy, separate from the rest. This room was divided into two
compartments, by two brick walls, five feet in height, which extended from the
door to within six feet of the teacher's desk, so that no one could pass from
one side of the room to the other without passing the teacher's desk.
However, as luck would have it, we had no teacher to interfere with us, the
Reverend Doctor Cowherd, Principal of the Academy, only entering the school-room
two or three times a week. At other times the first class had to go into
his house to recite to him. Whenever he did enter the school-room he
created a sensation. I can well remember the silence that always ensued
whenever his solemn and heavy step was heard on the stone staircase leading to
the upper room of the Academy; but when the door was thrown open, and his portly
person was fairly seen gliding with solemn and stately steps to the huge
arm-chair at the teacher's desk, the effect was highly imposing; among the
hundred pupils who filled the room, nothing was seen but attention to books--you
might have heard a pin drop.
A short time after our return from
Yorkshire, as we were in our room, either pursuing our studies, or amusing
ourselves, I forget which, the door was suddenly thrown open and the Reverend
Doctor marched up to the teacher's pulpit: he called for our lessons and
we obeyed the summons. There was an angry scowl upon his brow, which
portended anything but peace. At length the storm burst forth. We
were reciting to him, out of the Greek Testament, a portion of John's Gospel,
when taking advantage of some blunders we made, he commenced upbraiding us in no
measured terms, such of us as had made the above mentioned visit, that we should
have the audacity to hold communication with persons whom he had disowned and
virtually excommunicated. Then, to cap the climax of his fury, seizing his
Greek Testament, a ponderous folio, he forthwith drove them down the aforesaid
alley out into the lobby or entrance hall of the building. As I was then a
little shaver (being only nine years of age), and withal at the foot of the
class, I had hoped to have escaped unnoticed in the general rout; so took the
opportunity to slip in the rear of the victor to my seat. Vain hope! for
no sooner had he cleared the room of the main body of the class, than he turned
his artillery upon me, for obeying my father's orders in going into the country
to escape the pestilence. Yet this man would declaim against tyrants and
priestcraft! Strange inconsistency of human nature.
But to return from this
digression. The expulsion of my father from the Reverend Doctor's house
came very near weaning him from "Bible-Christianity." For
several Sundays he wandered about from one place of worship to another, but it
appeared that the teachings of our founder had taken such deep root that they
could not be eradicated, and he longed for his accustomed seat in Christ Church,
Salford, and the profound instructions of its minister. He accordingly
addressed the following note to the Doctor, which appears to hold out the idea
that the difficulty originated about money matters: "James Clarke,
desiring the liberty of Minister and Church, begs leave to inform Mr. Cowherd
that he does, for himself and family, renounce any claims he may have upon him
and the church." Thus a claim of near fifteen hundred dollars was
disposed of, for a seat in a meeting-house, to listen to the visionary theories
of the inventor of "Bible-Christianity." Though my father in
this transaction forgot the direction of the Apostle Paul, which requires every
one to take care of his own household, yet it shows the sacrifices he was
prepared to make for what he considered to be the truth. After the
Doctor's decease, however, the Church agreed to reimburse my father's advances,
as I have before related, to satisfy Mr. Dean.
The above communication appeared to
satisfy our Divine, who began to think that my father might not only learn
himself, but be apt to teach others also. Accordingly he gave him a call
to preach. He commenced by expounding the Epistle to the Romans on Sunday
evenings in the Academy; and soon after our Divine being dissatisfied with Mr.
Samuel Dean, whom he had placed in the pulpit of Christ Church, Hulme, he
removed him, and placed my father therein. Of my father's qualifications
as a preacher, it would probably not become me to speak; he certainly was not an
orator, though zealous in the cause he had espoused. Though naturally of a
timid and bashful disposition, yet he became fearless and bold in the exposure
of what he considered to be evil and error, no matter whether in high or low,
rich or poor. When he happened to have correct premises laid down, he
could reason well from them; but as I have said before with respect to
"Bible-Christianity," many of its premises and positions were
But to return to temporalities:
about the year 1814 my father and Mr. Livesey took into partnership in their
business a conceited coxcomb named Robert Armitstead, who
pretended to be a nephew or near relation of the famous Sir Robert Peel.
This gentleman, to whom was committed the care of a branch of the establishment
which was opened in London, credited goods to so many irresponsible persons as
to shake greatly the credit of the whole firm; so that my father was obliged to
retire therefrom, and open a warehouse for the sale of goods on
commission. His reverses in the mercantile line, produced a disgust at the
profession of a trader, and he imbibed the idea that "sin sticks so close
betwixt buying and selling," as to render it almost impossible for a
merchant to be either an honest man or a good Christian. Finally he
resolved to quit merchandising forever and devote himself to the education of
youth; accordingly he opened a school, in conjunction with Joseph Wright, in the
school-room attached to the meeting-house in which he officiated.
DESCRIPTION OF SALFORD GRAMMAR SCHOOL AND
SCIENCES, AND OF THE TEACHERS AND
It is well known that in our day and
time, each and every sect of any notoriety, has its colleges, universities,
seminaries, theological schools, and so forth, in which "pious young
men" may be prepared for the ministry, and properly initiated into the art,
trade and mystery of an expounder of the dogmas of the sects to which they
Our Reverend Doctor was well aware of
the importance of such institutions in perpetuating and increasing the religious
societies who patronized them. Accordingly, soon after the
anti-flesh-eating dogmas were first promulgated, he determined that an
institution of learning should be got up, in which instruction should be
afforded at a cheap rate to the public generally, but more especially to those
who were attached to his congregation. At the same time he made
arrangements to accommodate, if necessary, one hundred boarders, who of course
would be expected to conform to the Pythagorean diet of the principal.
The building was finished in the year
1809: it was a brick building of two lofty stories, besides the basement
and the attic. The church yard being raised five or six feet higher than
the streets on each side, probably in the process of grading, caused the
basement to open upon the street. It was used chiefly for the storage of
coals for fuel, although I recollect seeing a large box, in which were
cultivated mushrooms, to gratify the mortified appetite of the inventor of
"Bible-Christianity." The entrance to the Academy was from the
grave-yard; on either side of the entrance hall were the two rooms I have
formerly described, each lighted by two semi-circular windows. A flight of
stone stairs ascended to the second story of the building, a large room, perhaps
thirty feet by sixty, perhaps more. A large fireplace was placed at each
end of the room, near each of which there was a teacher's desk. The brick
walls were unplastered for about five feet above the floor, which was occupied
by commodious desks and seats for the scholars, who received light from five
semi-circular windows placed eight or nine feet from the floor. A
staircase from this room led to the attic, which was divided into three
compartments, lighted by windows placed in the roof, from which there was an
extensive prospect. As the building was to be styled not only Grammar
School, but Academy of Sciences, the founder took care that suitable apparatus
should be provided, in order that science might be taught if required. Two
pair of globes, (nine inch and eighteen), two powerful electrical machines, with
other necessary apparatus to illustrate that science, a magic lantern, a large
solar microscope, a six feet reflecting telescope, an air pump, composed the
chief articles that I can recollect of. A valuable library belonging to
the congregation was kept in the Academy, and to complete the whole, a printing
press and types was placed in the attic in order to enable the founder to
publish his version of the Bible and other theological writings if necessary.
No sooner was the institution opened
that the cheapness with which instruction was proposed to be dispensed filled
the building with one hundred and fifty pupils, of whom, upwards of twenty being
from a distance, boarded with the principal. So many scholars of
course required a corresponding number of tutors, and several young men were
employed as assistants in order to pay for their own instruction. The
first I shall mention was named William Munroe; where he was
from I know not, but I will recollect that he was afflicted with weak eyes, and
had to wear glasses to assist his sight, which, however, did not prevent the
principal from occasionally knocking them off with his big book while performing
that operation which the scholars technically styled "dumping,"
which consisted in belaboring the head and shoulders at one time with the
ponderous folio of Bryan Walton's Polyglot, at another with a heavy tome of a
Greek Testament, but in the present case with the Latin Quarto of Swendenborg's
Economy of the Animal Kingdom. This youngster, having thus a good example
set him, took the liberty one day when the other teachers were not present to
break a round box-wood ruler more than an inch in diameter over the back of one
of the scholars. This assumption of authority was not to be borne with;
accordingly, by a vote of the school taken with beans and peas, he was expelled
almost unanimously. What became of him afterwards I know not.
I have already mention William
Metcalfe as being a good scholar and of a mild temper. During the short
time he remained in the Academy he was generally pretty well liked. He was
one of the little party of emigrants who accompanied us to America, and became
minister of the Bible-Christian Society of Philadelphia. Becoming tired of
the business of teaching, he engaged as editor of a paper which flourished under
the various names of "Protector," "Independent
Democrat," and "Evening Star," which was zealously
engaged in advocating the election of Gen. Harrison to the Presidency,
but soon afterwards expired. He afterwards edited the "American
Vegetarian," assisted by Dr. Wm. A. Alcott, and died in the year
1862, in the 75th year of his age.
I have also mentioned Robert
Hindmarsh, the minister of Nunc Licet, and Joseph Wright, brother-in-law of Wm.
Metcalfe. This latter personage was endowed with a moderate portion of
self-conceit, and lacked (it was said) correct morals. I have introduced
him already as engaged in partnership with my father in the business of
teaching; he afterwards emigrated to America and had for some time the care of
an academy at the Head of Chester in Maryland, where I hope he had leisure to
reform his conduct.
But the two pinks of pedagogism who
occupied for the longest time the floors of Salford Grammar School and Academy
of Sciences were the Reverend James Scholefield and the Reverend John
Booth Strettles. The first named personage when he first made his
appearance among us was as awkward a country-looking Yorkshire tyke as you would
wish to see on a summer's day; but being endowed with a moderate quantity of
self-estimation, and having a very good idea of his own attainments, which
however were moderate, he displayed his personal vanity by combing his hair
Madonna fashion, and sporting a shining pair of top-boots, and his Pharisaism by
washing his hand after having defiled them by shaking hands with some old
acquaintance from Yorkshire. He was however tolerably well beliked by the
scholars. After our emigration to America he became minister of Christ
Church, Hulme, but not agreeing very well with Joseph Brotherton,
he left that Church with a part of the flock, who erected for him a place of
worship; but whether he founded a new sect or still retained the old cognomen of
Bible Christian, I am not informed. The other gentleman, although not so
well liked as the other, was a much more correct scholar, albeit of stern and
snappish disposition. It was very good sport for the scholars to be
spectators of the quarrels of these two Reverends, as they styled themselves,
which often turned upon the question as to who was head master. Sometimes
Scholefield, rising to his feet with great dignity, which made the tassels of
his top-boots vibrate majestically, and throwing the door at the head of the
stairs wide open, would command Stretlegs, as the boys called him, to leave the
house, which command however had no other effect than to excite the laughter of
his opponent. The founder of Bible-Christianity having given him (Strettles)
a call to preach, he occasionally exercised his talents on that line. I
went to hear him once, but found it a very dry performance.
A few words respecting the routine of
study in this institution will close the present chapter.
No sooner was a pupil elevated from
the elementary school to a seat in the upper room, than the Eton Latin Grammar
was put into his hands, accompanied with a little work in Latin and English
entitled Corderius' Colloquies, which was succeeded by Cornelius Nepos, Caesar's
Commentaries, and the Latin poets Ovid, Virgil and Horace. The Eton Greek
Grammar was likewise used, with the Greek Testament, Selected Sententiae, and
the Iliad of Homer.
At half-past eight in the morning the
roll was called, and all hands were paraded on the floor, and called upon to
recite the portion of grammar lesson assigned them to memorize; and woe to the
wight who was unprepared -- the best he could expect was to have his book flung
in his face, and himself remanded to the foot of the line, to take a fresh trial
when his turn came around again.
From that tile till eleven A. M. we
had to prepare our Latin lessons, and in the meantime the Rev. J. B. Strettles
amused himself by reading some pleasant romance from the shelves of a
circulating library; occasionally, however, casting an eye on his pupils to see
whether any of them were playing at ball or leap-frog. If he observed any
disorder, the four foot of ratan cane which lay on his desk near at hand, after
performing a semi-circular curve through the air, suddenly alighted among the
offenders, who had the honor of returning it to the teacher, and the still
further satisfaction of having the palms of their hands well warmed therewith
previous to their return to their seats.
After reciting our Latin lessons we
were dismissed for dinner which, while the principal kept boarders, was served
up in the school room, and honored by the presence of the principal himself.
At half-past one the roll was again
called, and our coy-books were handed out to us; after writing a copy we
attended to our arithmetical studies till four, when we read an English lesson
parsed some sentences therein, spelt some of the words contained in the lesson,
and were dismissed for the day. On Saturday mornings the few scholars who
attended directed their attention especially to geography.
Such was the institution and such the
routine in which I passed six years of my life, during which time I never missed
but one day, besides the regular holidays of the school; went seven or eight
times through the Latin grammar, read the intermediate books and half way
through Horace; passed through the Greek grammar three or four times, read some
in John's Gospel, the Acts of the Apostles and Greek Sentences; studied some in
Caddick's Hebrew Grammar, read several chapters of Genesis and several Psalms in
the original; became a tolerably good proficient in Murray's English Grammar,
and advanced in arithmetic as far as decimal fractions; and upon reviewing the
whole, the method of instruction seems to me more calculated for the ease of the
master than the advancement of the scholar.
The year 1816 was a season of
peculiar difficulty and distress to the laboring classes of the manufacturing
districts of Great Britain. After having been engaged for nearly
twenty-five years in a deadly struggle with the French Revolution and the French
Emperor, she found herself exhausted with the contest, and crushed to the earth
with an enormous load of debt amounting to four thousand millions of dollars,
which will no doubt be paid -- when the Philosopher's Stone is discovered.
Upon the return of peace, the workshops and manufactories of the continent,
which during the presence of actual hostilities there had been in a measure
suspended, were enabled to resume their former activity. This, by a
necessary consequence, somewhat diminished the demand for British manufactures,
and of course many of the operatives were thrown out of employ, while others
were obliged to work at reduced wages. To crown the whole, the harvest of
that year proved almost a complete failure; the unremitted wet weather in the
season of harvest proved so injurious to the crop, that there was scarcely a
bushel saved fit to be eaten. The only flour to be had, that was worth
having, was American barrel, which was retailed at the enormous rates of six
shillings per dozen pounds, or eleven dollars per hundred.
The scarcity of
employment, combined with the high price of provisions, had a considerable
effect upon the minds and temper of the people. The well-known abuses and
corruptions of the British Government of that day were made use of by artful and
designing men to inflame the passions of the lower classes to occasional
outbreaks of the law. Great mass meetings of the populace were held in the
fields and open spaces of the towns, where the subject of Parliamentary Reform
was descanted on by the popular orators, as the grand panaces and cure for all
politics being decidedly favorable to these political Reformers, even
occasionally descanting on the subject from the pulpit, he was of course
intimate with some of the popular leaders, which rendered him obnoxious not only
to the hired minions of power, but also to our own relatives.
of the times likewise had such an effect in diminishing his school, as to reduce
his income very materially. This combination of circumstances induced him
to direct his attention to America. The free and liberal government of the
United States, the engage once more in the cultivation of the soil; the
insinuations or prophecies of old Billy Cowherd, that America was to be the
scene where Bible-Christianity was to spread and flourish, determined his
course, much to the dislike of our aristocratic relatives.
important item was necessary to be taken into consideration, in order to
undertake a voyage to America--funds were requisite, and they were scarce.
However, this obstacle was at length overcome. Several of his brethren of
the Bible-Christian order had likewise determined to emigrate, and so after
various meetings and consultations, a plan was at length agreed upon for mutual
aid and assistance in the proposed enterprise, which was substantially as
1st -- That
such of the brethren of the Bible Christian order as wished to emigrate to
America, who were possessed of any property, should throw the same into a common
stock, called "The Fund."
2dly -- That
those brethren who were not able to pay their passage, should be assisted out of
the common stock, upon the condition of repaying the same soon after their
arrival in the land of promise.
3dly -- That
such of the preaching brethren as wished to go, should likewise be assisted,
whether they repaid or not.
4thly -- On
their arrival in America, what was remaining of the Fund was to be invested in
lands, upon which all were to labor in common till the year 1821 (one of the
inventor's Judgment years), when the whole was to be divided among the members
in proportion to their original advances.
Those who had never advanced anything were to be assisted in making a start by
the more fortunate.
preliminaries having been adjusted, suitable enquiries were made at Liverpool,
when it was ascertained that the ship Liverpool Packet, Steven Singleton,
master, bound for Philadelphia, would sail about the 1st of April, 1817, and
that an agreement could be made by which the whole company of emigrants
(originally intended to be eighty, but eventually only forty souls) could be
accommodated on reasonable terms.
proposed for the commencement of the voyae was considered by the brethren as
very auspicious, as being about the time of the Exodus, when the Children of
Israel were delivered from Egyptian bondage. An agreement was forthwith
entered into with the captain for the passage of as many of the brethren as
could be paraded, who arrived in Liverpool a few days before the time proposed
are the names of the company, so far as I can recollect:
worthies, Royle, Higgens and Radford contributed about $900 each to the fund,
Bury and Horrocks about $200 each; the balance had scarcely enough to pay their
passage. This inequality of contribution was, as might have been expected,
a fruitful source of grumblement among the Exodes; but let us not anticipate
|James Clarke (Minister), wife and six children
|John Bury (Treasurer) and wife,
|William Metcalfe, wife and children
|James Royle and wife
|Wm. Heggs, wife, child and her sister, Miss Richardson
|George Radford and wife
|Thomas Dax, wife and son
|Adam Lowe, single man
|Mrs. Barber, widow
|William Almond and two children
|Jeremiah Horrocks, wife and two children
|John Freeland and wife,
|Miss Collins, an outsider
having been prepared, a due proportion of sea-biscuit, flour, potatoes, pease,
butter, eggs stowed away in salt, groceries, etc., being provided, two
goats having also been taken on board to supply mild for the tea of the company,
on the fifth of April A. D. 1817, the ship Liverpool Packet was warped out of
dock with a favorable tide, and dropping down the river Mersey, cast anchor
three or four miles below the town of Liverpool.
morning the captain came on board, followed by a custom house officer with two
assistants. The said officer being taken down into the cabin, liberally
treated with good liquor, and furthermore having a gold guinea placed over each
eye by the accommodating captain, his assistants made a show of searching the
vessel for contraband goods and passengers, but finding none, took their leave.
being weighed, the sails set, in a short time we found ourselves on the expanse
of the Irish Sea. No sooner did our vessel get in motion, and rise and
fall on the swelling waves of the open sea, when a sudden dizziness seized upon
all the landloafers, and old Neptune claimed as a tribute the breakfasts we had
swallowed in the morning. This disagreeable nausea, which lasted a
few days, we found affected a boatful of passengers who now made their
appearance on board, having been prevented by the absurd laws of England, which
then prohibited the emigration of artizans, from publicly taking their passage;
at the same time several others made their appearance from the hold, having been
stowed away among the salt and coal with which the vessel was ballasted.
being now on board, we progressed in earnest on our voyage. The wind being
for sometime unfavorable, we were obliged to tack, alternately approaching the
Welsh mountains and the Wicklow hills of swate Ireland; in a day or two,
however, we cleared St. George's Channel and launched out on the blue waters of
the broad Atlantic. Our sea-sickness having now principally abated, we had
leisure to survey the novelty of the scene. As far as the sight could
extend, nothing could be seen but a wide waste of waters, with occasionally a
passing sail in the distance. The waters, which, while we remained within
soundings, appeared of a greenish hue, now assumed a dark indigo blue.
Occasionally a shoal of porpoises served to vary the scene, acting their antic
gambols ahead of the vessel's bow. One these occasions a harpoon was
sometimes rigged, though only once successfully, when one was captured and taken
on board. Sometimes it so happened that one was wounded, when instanter
the whole troop would move off in double-quick time, leaping and careering as
long as they remained in sight. Sometimes we observed at a distance the
hets of water thrown up by whales; once only had I the opportunity of observing
one anyways close. Sharks would sometimes be observed sailing with the
dorsal fin above the water, but though a stout hook was baited, none were ever
days the weather was moderate and the sea tolerably smooth; but upon approaching
the latitude of the Bay of Biscay, having a pretty stiff breeze, we came to a
part of the ocean where there had been recently a severe storm, and the water
was as yet very considerably agitated. We entered this boisterous region
about dark, and the chests and boxes not having been properly secured,
occasioned considerable disturbance by sliding and rolling about; however no
great damage was done, save the demolition of sundry piles of crockery which had
been carefully laid upon the shelves, and the overspilling of certain trays full
of pease soup. About midnight an alarm of fire was raised, which turned
out to be only the steward striking a light. In the morning a sublime yet
awful sight presented itself; the waves, raised to a mountain hight, came
rolling on as though they would overwhelm us, and as they approached us would
raise us aloft on their briny summits, and as they passed on would sink us down
into a deep valley. Occasionally might be observed, rolling on at the
distance of half a mile or more, a wave more towering the rest, advancing like a
squadron of hoarse on a charge, which as it reached us, would give the vessel a
shock, causing it to vibrate from stem to stern, and as it sand down into the
trough of the sea the uproar would be followed by an awful yet momentary
however, this turmoil subsided, and about the 20th of April land was discovered
peering above the waters, which proved to be Porto Santo, one of the Madeiras.
Leaving it to the right, we shortly came in sight of the principal island of the
group, which lay right ahead. About the middle of the afternoon we passed
on the left a small uninhabited island or group of islets called the Desertas.
The wind being unfavorable we did not weather the cape which forms the southeast
point of Madeira till early next morning, when about ten o'clock we cast anchor
in the Bay or rather Road of Funchal, about a quarter of a mile from the shore,
in ninety fathoms of water with a muddy bottom. After having been deprived
for sometime of the sight of land, the prospect thereof was quite refreshing to
the eye, more especially as it presented to us quite an unusual
appearance. The whole island presented the appearance of a vast mountain
with very little level land thereon. It is indeed a huge mountain of
volcanic origin, thrity miles from east to west and twelve from north ot south,
some of the peaks rising to an elevation of over 6,000 feet. Before us, to
the north, the land rose to a considerable elevation, covered almost to the
summit with vineyards or cultivated fields, while further to the east the ground
did not appear to much cultivated, but was covered with a kind of furze-bush,
which being covered with yellow blossoms made rather a gay appearance. The
south-east point of the bay came down with a high rocky bluff into the ocean,
while the south-west extended out with a considerable stretch on level
land. At the center of this semi-circular arch was situated the town or
city of Funchal, which at that distance presented a very neat appearance, the
buildings being whitewashed on the outside and roofed with red tiles. At
each extremity of the town a fortification stood to defend the place, which was
said to contain twenty thousand inhabitants, and carried on at that time a
considerable trade in wine. Several vessels were anchored near us, two
British brigs-of-war, five or six huge East Indiamen, a Swedish vessel, with
three or four others of different nations.
No sooner was
the anchor let go, than there appeared approaching us from the shore a small
barge, having the Portuguese flag flying at the stern. Having arrived
within earshot, a gentleman who was seated therein hailed our captain in a
squeaking, effeminate voice, and in tolerably good English, enquiring after the
health of the persons on board. After a parade of calling the muster-roll,
the gentleman, who appers to have been health-officer of the port, threw our
captain a yellow flag and took his leave. This flag having floated at the
mast-head about fifteen minutes, was taken down, and we were allowed a free
communication with the shore, which privilege many of the passengers embraced.
having given us the use of his boat, some of us landed at a little cove in the
rocks, just under the castle on the west side of the bay, and crossing a narrow
causeway across a kind of swamp or inlet of the sea, soon found ourselves at the
gates of the town. Upon entering it we were much disappointed in its
appearance, the streets being narrow and dirty, and the majority of the houses
of a mean appearance. Very few were accommodated with glass windows,
lattices of wood supplying their place. No carts, wagons, nor any other
kind of wheel-carriages were to be seen, their place being supplied by sleds
drawn by oxen. The roofs were covered with tiles, which swarmed with
lizards. The dress and appearance of the people showed that we were in a
foreign country; some few were well dressed but a large majority were rather
indifferently clothed in a shirt and trowsers[sic] with high peaked woolen
caps. The streets swarmed with great numbers of the black tribe, who,
barefooted and bareheaded, and not over-clean, strolled along, subsisting as
drones upon the community, giving nothing in return but barren and unprofitable
prayers. From the shortness of our stay, we had not an opportunity of
making any enquiries as to their morals, but judging from the proverb,
"Like priest, like people." I should not form a very favorable
opinion, for the people were the verieat beggars in creation, the men bagging
for pistareens, and the boys for vingtems, a copper coin worth about two cents.
In the course
of our rambles through town, we came to a church with a monastery
attached. It was built after the plan of some of the oriental houses,
having a large courtyard in the middle. The church occupied the front of
the square, and the building of the monastery the other three sides. Upon
going into the church, we observed in the vistibule[sic] a basin of holy water
fixed up against the wall, for the use of all true believers, who sealed
themselves on the forehead with the sign of the cross, as they entered the
building. One one side of the vistibule was a room, said to have silver
gates, used as a confessional; on the other side was an apartent containing a
display of images from the Virgin Mary down to the Savior. The main body
of the church was not furnished with pews or seats of any kind, which I am
informed are not common in the Catholic churches of Continental Europe.
Passing through the chapel and ascending a flight of stairs, we found ourselves
in a long, dark gallery, dimly lighted by a window at one end' on each side of
the gallery were the cells occupied by the monks, who here droned away part of
that time which had been better employed in doing something useful to
society. The Governor's palace was a sizeable building, not remarkable for
beauty; however, in front was a pleasant promenade, planted with various kinds
of flowering shrubs and tress, the luxuriance and beauty of which, with the
groves of orange trees, reminded us of the southern climate. Visiting the
market place, we found it situated in a square of no great extent, fitted up
with stalls resembling a watchman's or sentry's box, in which were exposed for
sale various vegetables and fruits. Although as early as the last week of
April, potatoes and onions were large, and strawberries abundant.
Different kinds of fruit, such as bananas, oranges and lemons, were plentiful
and cheap. Here, too, for the first time, we saw Indian corn some of which
we purchased to feed our goats. After partaking of a comfortable shore
dinner at a house of entertainment called the English Hotel, situated in the Rua
Des Ingleaes, or English street, we returned on board.
A day or two afterwards
we again went ashore intending to visit some cavalier's gardens and grounds
three or four miles in the interior. Leaving the town by the northern
gate, we began to ascend the hill along a narrow lane, bordered by stone walls
which separated it from the fields and vineyards on either hand. The most
remarkable thing I recollect having noticed, was some cactus bushes five or six
feet high, growing by the side of the road. We occasionally met with some
of the natives, who as usual employed themselves in begging of our party such
refreshments as they had with them. As we continued the ascent, the ground
became more rocky and barren, until we reached the summit, when looking back, we
saw the town as it were beneath our feet, and the dark, rolling ocean stretched
beyond it as far as the eye could discern, with the shipping dwindled in the
distance to nothing. There was also a sensible change in the climate; the
lizards had disappeared, the orange and lemon were no more seen, and the only
cultivation visible was some patches of oats. The waste grounds were
occupied by briers and furze bushes. The dwellings of the people
corresponded with the poverty of the scene, appearing like heaps of stones
loosely laid up without mortar, at one end of which was a fireplace raised from
the ground and somewhat resembling a blacksmith's forge.
Discovering that we had
lost our way, we struck off in an easterly direction across the hills and
hollows, and after traveling a mile or two, we came to one of the aforesaid
stone huts, inhabited by an old woman, who, up to her knees in a brook that ran
by, was occupied in washing clothes, using the rough stones of the branch as a
wash-board. With some difficulty we made her understand the place of our
destination, when she showed us the proper course. She then began to beg,
but finding she made nothing thereby, she pursued us with her maledictions.
the old lady, we shortly arrived at a grove of cedars, a small remnant of the
heavy forests with the island was covered when first discovered; and here I will
remark that the word Maderia in the Portuguese language signifies timber or
forest. Soon after the discovery of the island, a fire broke out thereon,
which consumed nearly the whole of the timber. Passing the grove, we found
ourselves in a valley of some little extent, in which was situated the object of
our excursion. After viewing the gardens, admiring a pair of swans, etc.,
we set out on our return. The road led down the valley of a small stream,
which discharged itself in the ocean near the town. After being annoyed
some by beggars we entered the town, and went down to the beach in order to
embark for our vessel. The shore here lying open to the ocean, is always
washed by a surf, which compels these islanders always to haul their boats upon
landing high and dry upon the beach. In the course of the day a strong
wind from the south had considerably ruffled the surface of the ocean, and
caused the surf to break upon the beach with increased fury. Some of our
party becoming alarmed, concluded to remain on shore for the night, while the
rest of us, seating ourselves in a boat on the shore, were launched out through
the foaming surf by half-a-dozen stout fellows, some of whom got pretty well
soaked by the operation. After buffeting the billows for ten or fifteen
minutes were reached our vessel in safety. The rough water continued for a
day or two, which caused a renewal of seasickness among some of us, which,
however, soon passed away.
sojourning at our anchorage a week, taking in sundry pipes of wine, and
replenishing our water casks, our anchor was weighed; we stood for the
south-west with a pleasant breeze, and in a few hours the elevated hills of
Maderia sank in the ocean.
THE VOYAGE CONTINUED.
number of persons who are packed together in a sea-vessel on a long voyage --
persons of different tempers, manners, and condition in life being thus thrown
together, and obliged in some degree to associate together -- there must
necessarily be many good opportunities to study human nature. Besides a
crew of about thirty men, we had on board upwards of one hundred passengers of
all ages, and different conditions in life. Besides our company of forty
Bible-Christians, there were a number of farmers from Wigan in Lancashire, very
fine filks, named Taylor, Caldwell and Gore; two or three families of Irish
Roman Catholics, as I then thought the dirtiest folks in creation; some Welsh
and Scotch, with one or two would-be gentlemen as cabin passengers; however, we
got along very well without much jar. Our captain was a big stout fellow,
a good seaman, somewhat passionate, especially when he had been indulging in
strong drink. I recollect on a certain time, when in the track of shipping
bound from the West Indies to Europe, we fell in with a vessel bound from
Jamaica to Liverpool. All hands being rather scarce of groceries, our
captain determined to board her in order to obtain a supply. A boat being
accordingly manned, he steered for her, she being more than a mile
distant. After an absence of two or three hours he returned well supplied
with coffee and sugar, and with his inward man well replenished with turtlesoup
and Jamaica rum. The boat's crew had also been liberally treated and felt
their keeping. After supplying such of his passengers as needed with
groceries, he divided the remainder among the crew. As his Royal Highness
the captain of the Liverpool Packet was talking a walk on the forecastle, he
happened to overhear one of his boat's crew grumbling about the division of the
groceries. Forthwith calling him up, he proceeded to administer to him a
castigation pugnibus et calcibus, and finally knocked him down the
hatchway. Then fastening a rope, which swung from the foreyard, around the
fellow's body, he ordered all hands to man the rope and hoist him up to the
yard. No one obeyed the mandate, except one sturdy fellow, a Norwegian by
birth, who after giving a few fait "yo-heave-hos" relinquished the
task. A young man named Mason now stepped forward, and began to
remonstrate with the captain upon his conduct, with no other effect than to
cause his wrath to concentrate upon himself. Seizing a huge tackle black
by the hook, he began to belabor Mason about the head, who of course naturally
endeavored to keep him off. Dropping the block, he started in a towering
passion to the cabin, in order to arm himself with his pistols; but the
passengers succeeded so far in pacifying him, that sending for Mason to the
cabin, he contented himself with bestowing upon him a pair of black eyes, which
operation he performed while the steward and McQuillen, the second mate held his
victim. Thus terminated this affray, after giving the women a hearty
Maderia, which lies in about 33' north latitude, we proceeded still further
south, in order to obtain the benefit of the north-east trade winds, which blow
almost uninterruptedly from that direction. We there found very pleasant
weather, with an easterly breeze most of the time. Sometimes, however, it
fell calm, and the surface of the ocean became as smooth as a millpond.
Sometimes, however, these calms occurred when the sea was undulated into broad
swells, which occasioned a much more disagreeable pitching of the ship than when
urged along by a still gale. During the continuance of one of these calms,
we espied at some distance something floating upon the surface of the water,
which experienced eyes knew to be a sea-turtle asleep. A boat was
forthwith lowered and manned, which succeeded in capturing the gentleman, who
being brought on board was stowed away in a hogshead of sea-water, when after
remaining fasting for several days, he was manufactured into soup.
Sometimes the monotony of the scene was enlivened or varied by an occasional
shoal of porpoises, occasionally by a gang of dolphins, or by numbers of flying
fish skipping out of the water; sometimes at a distance we observed the wake of
a shark, and not unfrequently were we treated with the sight of a whale-spout,
though but on one occasion did I have the satisfaction of observing one of these
monsters of the deep close at hand. Being seated on day in the long-boar,
which occupied the center of the main deck, I distinctly saw one at the distance
of eight or ten rods rushing by with great velocity.
revolution of the earth from west to east, necessarily causes the water of the
ocean between the tropics, sided by the trade-winds, to move in an opposite
direction. The waters of the great Atlantic are thus dammed up in the Gulf
of Mexico, and seeking to obtain a vent rush with great velocity round the
southern point of Florida at the rate of eight or nine miles an hour; then
proceeding in a north-easterly direction, the velocity gradually diminishes till
it is finally lost. After a few days we found ourselves in this Gulf
Stream, distinguished by the superior temperature of the waters. This is
so striking, and the boundaries of this hot current are so well defined, that
the stem of a ship out of the current may be in water of 40 degrees temperature,
while the bows thereof in the current may be at 70 degrees. This superior
temperature of the waters of this current as it spreads itself towards Ireland
and the north-west of Europe, is the cause of the comparatively mild climate of
those regions. We also passed through immense quantities of the so-called
gulf-weed, covering many square miles.
steered a northwest course near the Bermudas, but not in sight of them.
Various signs now indicated our near approach to the land, of which the
variegated hues of the clouds at sunset were most striking. Early one
morning we fell in with a pilot-boat of which there are many constantly employed
in cruising off the coast, seeking employment in piloting vessels into the
harbors. Having supplied ourselves with one, who immediately took command
of the sailing department, we began to consider our voyage as nearly
closed. And here we had an example of the accuracy with which those who go
down to the deep in ships navigate them across the great waters. "You
are rather too far north, captain, for the Capes of the Delaware, for yesterday
we saw the woodlands off Egg Harbor, in Jersey," said our pilot upon coming
on board. "Wait till noon," said Captain Singleton,
"and we shall see," Meridian came, and with it the usual
observation of the altitude of the sun, which showed our captain to be correct
and the pilot mistaken. Accordingly, the first object that cheered our
sight upon rising in the morning was the summit of the light-house on Cape
Henlopen, peering above the waters on our larboard bow. In a short time
the coast, which is here very low, became visible, and before noon we entered
the Delaware Bay.
The shores of
the Bay are low and sandy, covered with timber mostly of the pine family, and
did not appear to be very thickly settled. Just within the Cape on the
Delaware side stood the little town of Lewes, a rendezvous for pilots.
Having anchored during the night, we passed the next day [in] the ancient town
of New Castle, and shortly after we observed upon the first elevated ground at
some distance from the bay, the town of Wilmington. Passing the mouth of
Brandywine, famous for its manufactories both of flour and gunpowder, towards
evening we came near Mud Island, on which are situated some fortifications
called (I think) Fort Mifflin, just below the mouth of the Schuylkill
river. Here we were boarded by a health officer, who expressed himself
well pleased with our appearance.
being desirous of reaching Philadelphia the same evening, sent Mr. McQuillen,
the second mate, with a boat to search for a buoy anchored on a shoal, with
orders to keep a light burning by it till the ship had passed. In the
morning we found he had been unsuccessful, for the ship was aground hard and
fast, lying with her broadside up stream, her bow towards the fort, ad her stern
towards Red Bank, in Jersey, famous for a fight with the Hessians during the
o'clock a steamboat came streaking it up the river, when a number of us took the
opportunity of taking a passage in her up to the city, and in a short time we
found ourselves once more on terra firma, amongst the inhabitants of the new
world, after a tedious passage of seventy days, it being Sunday, June 14th,
at Philadelphia we took up our quarters for a day or two at the house of Mrs.
Chambers, sign of the Plow, in North Third street, till we could find more
suitable lodgings; when we rented two upper rooms from Mr. Buchanan, near the
northeast corner of Locust and Eleventh streets, at a dollar per week.
Such of our
company as were mechanics speedily found employment at good wages. Mr.
Metcalfe, finding one of his old acquaintances about declining the business of
teaching, stepped into his place, and in his school-room our little company
assembled on the Lord's-day for worship. But as I have said before, the
chief object proposed in this emigration was the cultavation of the soil, and to
further this object, my father, fortunately or rather unfortunately, became
acquainted with John Vaughn, Esq., acting Portuguese consul, a
gentleman well known at that time in the city of Philadelphia. It appears
that this person was somewhat interested in lands situated about one hundred and
eighty miles north north-west from the city, near the forks of Loyal Sock Creek,
in Lycoming, now Sullivan county. It was here that a large tract had been
laid in by the late Dr. Joseph Priestley, of Unitarian memory,
probably in order to form a Unitarian settlement; but e that as it may most of
the lands there were owned by his son, Joseph Priestly, of
Northumberland, Pa., and most of the few settlers there were English. The
representations of this gentleman, that is Mr. Vaughan, induced my father and
Mr. Royle to undertake a journey to spy out the land; but not liking its
appearance, they took a round to look at some farms in other parts of the State.
return to Philadelphia, the favorable terms upon which these lands were offered
as to price and terms of payments, the promise of the proprietors to advance
money towards building a house of worship and towards repairing the roads,
combined with their own scantiness of funds, induced them to give the proposal a
more favorable consideration; so, after another journey of exploration, it was
finally determined that the proposed settlement should be made there.
return to Philadelphia, the favorable terms upon which these lands were offered
as to price and terms of payments, the promise of the proprietors to advance
money towards building a house of worship and towards repairing the roads,
combined with their own scantiness of funds, induced them to give the proposal a
more favorable consideration; so, after another journey of exploration, it was
finally determined that the proposed settlement should be made there.
were now accordingly made by the purchase of wagons, horses, gears, &c., for
the removal of the families to the contemplated location; but before this took
place an explosion happened among the members and fund-holders of the Bible
inequality of the contributions to that fund has already been alluded to.
It appears that Higgs and Radford, not wishing to have any part or lot in the
proposed settlement, laid their heads together to contrive a plan to get their
money back. For this purpose, two or three days before the time set for
starting, Radford, in company with a gentleman who carried a small slip of
paper, appeared at our lodgings. This slip of paper was a summons for my
father to appear forthwith before some justice or other officer to answer George
Radford of a plea of debt. Upon adjourning to the magistrate's office,
Radford stated that my father owed him two hundred pounds sterling, less the
passage money of himself and wife. My father wished to see his witness,
whereupon Higgs stated that he had seen Radford hand the aforesaid #200 to my
father, who immediately handed it to John Bury, treasurer of the fund.
(Why did they not come upon Bury?) The original articles of agreement were
then produced, by which it appeared that no claim could be sustained for the
money advanced until the year 1821. Radford tried to evade this
conclusion, by stating that he had not personally subscribed to these
articles: this plea was overruled, inasmuch as Radford himself confessed
that he had authorized his name to be placed there. The magistrate observing that this was a disagreement among friends, stated
that he should dismiss the case, advising them to settle the difficulty in a friendly manner. Radford and Higgs whereupon
agreed to take orders upont those individuals who were indebted to the fund for their passage money.
This matter having been arranged, preparations were made for instant departure. These preparations were not very extensive, consisting only of two two-horse wagons, with some indispensable articles for use in a new settlement. The persons who accompanied us were, Jeremiah Horrocks and family, James Royle and wife, and Thomas Dax, a brother of Mrs. Royle. Jeremiah Horrocks was an honest, friendly-hearted, industrious fellow, much attached to my father, by whom he had been rescured from a life of intemperance, as were also his two brothers. He was a dyer by trade, and endowed with great personal strength. His education had been very limited, and of course his information was not extensive. He remained at the Elklands a short time after we left there, then returned to Philadelphia, where he died about eighteen years afterwards. Royle was a mna of ordinary abilities, a saddler by trade, but had some knowledge of farming. When he left the Elklands he purchased a little farm not far from the city of P., and died at an advanced age. His brother-in-law, Dax, was a harmless innofensive fellow, but had a termagant of a wife, who happily was left behind, she refusing to accompany us, and preventing her son (a boy of my age) from following his father.
At this distance of time, I have no certain recollection of the precise date when we took our departure from the Quaker City, all the papers which would have assisted my memory having perished through time and neglect. It was, however, some time in the month of August, rather late in the afternoon, as we only journeyed five or six miles to the falls of Schuylkill, where we put up for the night, and ordered coffee. Jerry Horrocks remarked we would have to tell them what we wanted, or they would be cooking us a whole jorum of meat. This remark of Jerry's was the cause of our finding out in what manner moving families traveled in Pennsylvania in those days. The people of the inn informed us that they were only preparing coffee, as it was common for movers to carry their own bread and other provisions with them, and call at the taverns for so many quarts of coffee or mild. This information we found very useful in the course of our journeyings.
The scenery around this place was very pretty. There was a large building erected on the bank of the river, used as a wire manufactory. From this building to a tree on the opposite bank was constructed a foot-bridge of wires stretched across the river, which appeared to us quite much of a curiosity. A frame bridge was also in the course of erection. The next day we pursued our journey, and soon discovered that we were overloaded; a gray mare which my father drove in his wagon refused to pull. After bothering with her some time, we swapped her off for an old bay horse, which, as we moved along pretty blithely afterwards, we named Jolly. We passed on through Norristown, in Montgomery county, a pleasant place, and late in the the evening arrived at Unsecker's tavern, at a place called Trap, where we thought best to store part of our loads. Passing along more briskly, we came about noon to Pottsgrove, a pleasant village, and some time after reached the borough of Reading, in Berks county, then as now a flourishing town. In passing through this county we put up at night at a private house, where the landlady, though born and raised in the neighborhood, was aunable to converse in the English tongue, a proof of the prevalence of a German population. Indeed the whole of the fine country in the part of the State seemed occupied by the Cutch, who appeared universally to have erected immense barns. After a day or two's journey more, and passing through Hamburg (where we passed the Sunday), and Orwigsburg, then the county seat os Schuylkill, the country became more hilly as we approaced the head of the Schuylkill river and the Blue Range of mountains. These mountains have several ridges, distinguishable in the part of the State as the North, South and Locust mountains.
These mountains, though thinkly inhabited, produce great quantities of huckleberries, which are very refreshing. At Stambach's tavern, where we passed a night, we saw a young elk which was confined in a stable, also a young fawn which was quite a pet, being suckled by the landlady.
Gletting clera of the mountains, we arrived at Sunbury, a quiet looking town situated on the east bank of the Susquehanna, just below the junction of the North and West branches of that river. Although this stream carries a considerable quantity of water, yet the navigation thereof is rather difficult, owing to the rapidity of the current, the numerous shoals and rocks with which its bed is encumbered. At that period it was chiefly used for floating down rafts of pine lumber from its upper tributaries during seasons of freshet. A short distance from Sunbury stands the town of Northumberland, in the forks of the river. We reached it by crossing two noble frame bridges thrown over the North Branch, which is here divided into two channels by the beautiful and fertile island of Shamokin. After leaving Northumberland, our route lay up the West Branch, sometimes on the river bank, on which stands the village of Milton, and after two days' traveling we arrived at Pennsborough, near Muncy Creek, where we were detained some time by the heavy and continued rain. The rain abating, although the water was out of the creek bottoms, we waded through till we came to the creek, where fortunately there was a good stone bridge. We then went up the creek to the residence of a worthy person named Grundy Lyon, whose acquaintance my father had made on his previous journeys. This gentleman had given our company an invitation to spend a few days at his house, which we gladly accepted, and were treated with the greatest hospitality. He was the owner of a mill and a distillery, and was well to do in the world.
As our next stage was across the Alleghanies, it was determined to leave one of the wagons behind and double teams upon the other one. Accordingly we all went forward one evening a few miles to Webster's, at the foot of the Alleghany ridge, from whene to Richard Rogers' on Loyal Sock, the next day, which was ten miles, without a human habitation, over a most miserable road. Royle, Horrocks and Dax went forward, while we stayed at old John Huckel's, a little further up Loyal Sock, who sent us up to our location in his ox cart.
RESIDENCE AT ELKLANDS.
In the northern part of Lycoming, now Sullivan county, is situated the township of Elklands, from which the neighborhood is familiarly called the Elklands. Bounded on the south by the Alleghany ridge, on the North by an elevated chain called Barnet's ridge; on the east it extended to the waters of the main Forks of Loyal Sock Creek, and on the west to some little beyond Elk Creek. It was six miles southeast from our location to the Forkds of Loyal Sock, and four miles west to Elk Lake, the head of Elk Creek, which discharged itself into the Loyal Sock about five miles below the Forks, after flowing nine or ten miles in a southerly direction. East of us was a small stream called Beaver Creek, which emptied into Elk Creek three or four miles below. We were about thirty miles north of Muncie on the West Branch of the Susquehannah, and eighteen southwest of Towanda, in Bradford coutny, on the North Branch.
Although there were considerable tracts of level land in this district, some parts were very hilly and broken, as the Loyal Sock and its tributaries flowed in very deep valleys. The prevailing timber in this region was beech, interspersed in many parts with sugar-trees, many of them of large growth, and huge hemlocks. Some black ash was found in the slashes, as the level ground was inclined to be wet; wild cherry, bass-wood or linden, maple, birch and ironwood, with some pines on the Loyal Sock hills, completed the catalogue. Throughout this whole region there was not an oak of any size to be found, neither hickory, white ash nor walnut. In Indiana we find that beech land, which bears sugar-trees of a good size, is of a good quality; but the soil of the Elklands was nothing to brag of. Each large tree had a small hillock around itself, and after the ground was cleared of timber, there was another clearing off of stones, most of them blocks of a coarse sandstone, though the rocks beneath the surface appeared to be a ind of red slate rock. The soil seemed more suited to grass than grain, of which only strping rye, oats and buckwheat could be raised to any advantage. Of wild fruits, there was an abundance of fine large strawberries, red raspberries and blackberries.
The population was very sparse, and as usual in such cases very friendly. The Sunday after our arrival, we were visited by many of our new neighbors, bringing presents of butter, eggs, fruits, etc. Two of them volunteered to lend us each a cow, of which we had the use of five or six months.
The trace of land bargained for by my father and J. HOrrocks consisted of four hundred acres, of which nearly one hundred had been improved. It had been settled about twenty years before by an English Quaker of the name of Ecroyd, who had expended large sums in making improvements, and not finding it profitable had abandoned it. since which time it had sometimes een rented out, and sometimes not; the fences had been consumed by fire, and acres of it had grown up with birch, wild cherry and briar bushes. The improved land sloped east towards Beaver Creek, and south towards a stretch of level country. The price was three dollars per acre. Mr. Royle's tract lay southwest of this, and was more valuable, being better improved. There were not any buildings on our tract of land, but a few rods north thereof was a two story hewed log building, the upper story unfinished, and a round log double barn, of which we had the use and occupancy.
Although some of the settlers had resided there 15 or 20 years, yet they were often obliged to go either to Muncie to Towanda to buy grain; and many were yet in debt for their land. Our nearest neighbor was Edward Eldred, Esq., a gentlemanly man of agreeable manners. This personage was formerly a silk merchant in London, who (as it was said) leaving a wife in that city, ran off with a young girl, and twenty years before had buried himself in this wilderness. He had built himself a mansion, consisting of four two storied hewed log buildings, raised with the corners together, so that in shape it resembled a Greek cross, or an old fashioned French chateau. Had this building been finished, it might have been made a commodious dwelling, but it was not then, nor have I any idea that it ever was. The owner, however, dignified it with the title of Libery Hall, and sure enough there was liberty enough for the winds and rains to sweep through at pleasure.
In the second chapter of Acts of Apostles we are informed that, in the generous enthusiasm that prevailed among believers on the first publication of Christianity, all things were in common. This kind of plan, however specious in theory, is very difficult in practice, on account of the selfish propensities of human nature; more especially when several families reside together under the same roof. It does not appear, however, that the Primitive Christians lived together like the Shakers, Harmonites, or Fourierites, for the same second chapter of Acts, forty-sixth verse, informs us that they broke bread from house to house. The Shakers appear to be more successful than other Communists in keeping peace in the families, which may arise from their plan of separating husband and wife, parents and children. In our case we found it would not answer, for my mother and Mrs. Horrocks, though neither of them ill-tempered women, soon found one house too small for them.
Now, it so happened that at the southern extremity of our improvement there had been a building raised and covered for a Friends' meeting house; and it afterwards appeared that although Friend Ecroyd had executed to us a general warranty deed for the whole tract, yet that he had previously deeded this building and five or six acres of ground around it to the Society of Friends. This building we determined to fit up for a separate dwelling. Accordingly the talents of Thomas Dax were put in requisition to erect for us a double chimney of the loose stones which lay around in the fields, filling up the interstices with clay, with two wooden arches or mantle-pieces of hewed cherry logs (not a very fire-proof arrangement); and it was otherwise fitted up so that we were able to winter therein, and as the building was constructed entirely of cherry logs, we might following the example of our neight Eldred, have called it Cherry Cottage.
This tedious winter having passed over, we found the five or six acres of rye, which we had sown in the fall, were not likely to yield much grain, it having been frozen out.
 Thomas, son of John Chesshyre, born March 15, 1732, at Warrington,
 Alice, daughter of Edward and Martha Gothard, born 1735; married 1754.
 "What is our coat of arms?" said aunt Sarah Chesshyre to my
grandfather one day, when I was there. "A bear's paw," said he.
Whether the old gentleman was joking, or whether a bear's paw was the
heraldic device of his kinsman, Sir John Chesshyre, I know not; but one thing is
certain, that the nobility and aristocracy of Europe have adopted as their
family symbols, beasts and birds of prey, or parts thereof; fit emblems of their
habits of living upon and devouring the substance of the laborers of the
land. Who Sir John Chesshyre was, where he belonged to, whether he was a
knight or barron-knight, I know not; but as Mr. Toots says, It's of no
 On a fertile plain a little distance south-east of the village of Runcorn,
near the head of the tidewater of the river Mersey, upon an elevated mound,
stands or did stand, when I a little boy saw it, the ruins of the ancient castle
of Halton, formerly the residence of the Barons of Halton, who were feudatories
of the Earls of Chester.
 John Chesshyre commanded a vessel in a great sea-fight with the French in
1794, June 1st. His commander was Admiral Lord Howe. In consequence
of that fight he received considerable prize-money, and the rank of Post
Captain. Leaving active service some time after, he was stationed at Swansea in
South Wales, where he had the command of a part of the coast. When the
Duke of Clarence became king under the title of William IV, having been himself
employed in the navy, he made a general promotion in the ranks of the navy, and
Post Captain John Chesshyre was raised to the rank of Admiral. One of his
sons went as a cadet to India, where he died. His other son, William, was
one of the reverend clergy at Canterbury, in Kent, at my last advices.
 They were both buried in a part of the old Collegiate Church of Manchester,
known as Lord Derby's chapel.
 John Clarke died in the year 1842, aged 66. His son, Henry, died
young; his son Samuel resided at Gorey, in Ireland, in the year 1852; had then a
family of six children. His (uncle John's) two daughters, Sarah and Ann
Lapidge, married two brothers named King, farmers, near Stowe, in
Buckinghamshire, but childless.
 See American Phrenological Journal, Vol. XXXVII, p. 36, also his life
written by Joseph, and published by Fowler & Wells, N.Y.
 These persons immediately upon landing pushed out to what was then the Far
West, and settled upon the hills and broken ground on the east side of the lower
course of the river Muskingum, in Ohio. It is somewhat singular that I
should have heard of them more than once since that time. About the year
1820, a young man of my acquaintance, residing near Lebanon, Ohio, while
visiting some relatives on the Muskingum, dell in with and made acquaintance
with some of them. Two or three years ago, or fifty years later, I became
acquainted with an old gentleman of the name of Paget, residing near Drakesville,
Iowa, who was raised in that region of country, and was well acquainted with
them. They were distinguished for industry and frugality, though not
located in a very fertile region of country.
 In 1850 the population of Elkland township was 408; of Sullivan county about 3700. In 1860--5637.
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