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(By courtesy of Publishers of the New England Magazine.)



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Hamilton was the established in the Northwestern Territory. It was formed January 2, 1790, by proclamation of Governor St CLAIR named from Gen. Alexander HAMILTON. Its original boundaries were thus defined: Beginning on the Ohio river, at the confluence of the little Miami, and down the said Ohio to the mouth of the Big Miami; and up said Miami to the standing stone forks or branch of said river and thence with a line to be drawn due cast to the Little Miami, and down said Little Miami river to the place of beginning.’’ The surface is generally rolling; the lands clay, and in the valleys deep alluvion, with a substratum of sand. Its agriculture includes a great variety of fruits and vegetables for the Cincinnati market.


Area about 400 square miles. In 1887 the acres cultivated were 68,458; in pasture, 19,468; woodland, 10,774; lying waste, 5,619; produced in wheat, 163,251 bushels; rye, 34,390; buckwheat, 110; oats, 116,500; barley; 34,390; corn, 468,501; broom corn, 2,345 pounds brush; meadow hay, 16,573 tons; clover hay, 3,915; potatoes 190,398 bushels; tobacco, 25,460 pounds; butter,7,413; cheese, 9,950; sorghum, 15 gallons; maple syrup, 454; honey, 7,413 pounds; eggs, 327,650 dozen; grapes, 235,235 pounds; wine, 3,091 gallons; Sweet potatoes 11,314 bushels; apples, 1,910; peaches, 2,327; pears 1,195; wool, 9,405 pounds; milch cows owned, 9,714; milk, 3,779,048 gallons. School census, 1888, 99,049; teachers, 1,031; miles of railroad track, 545. 



And Census





And Census














Mill Creek,

















Cincinnati (city),




































Population of Hamilton, in 1820, was 31,764; 1830, 52,380; 1840, 80,165; 1860, 216,410; 1880; 313,374; of whom 191,509 were born in Ohio; 10,586; Kentucky; 6,468; Indiana; 4,362; New York; 4,185; Pennsylvania; 2,361; Virginia; 53,252; German Empire; 16,991; Ireland; 4,099; England and Wales; 1,787, France; 1,308, British America; 796, Scotland. Census, 1890, 374,573.


Before the war much attention was given to the cultivation of vineyards upon the hills of the Ohio for the manufacture of wine, and it promised to be a great business when the change in climate resulted disastrously.




The Great Dam at Cincinnati in the Ice Age.


The country in the vicinity of Cincinnati owes its unsurpassed beauty to the operations of Nature during the glacial era. It was the ice movements that gave it those fine terraces along the valleys and graceful contours of formation on summits of the hills that were so attractive to the pioneers. Here it was that great ice movement from the north ended. As has been remarked, “Those where the days of the beautiful lake rather than the beautiful river.”


No single cause has done more to diversify the surface of the country, to add the attractiveness of the scenery and to furnish the key by which the conditions of the Ice Age can be reproduced to the mind’s eye than glacial dam. To them we own the present existence of nearly all the waterfalls in North America, as well as nearly all the lakes.


A glacial dam across the Ohio river is suppose to have existed at the site of Cincinnati during the Ice Age, and the evidence supporting the theory is so full and conclusive that its existence can almost be assumed as an absolute certainty.


The evidences of the former existence of this dam and the lake caused thereby were first discovered and the attention of the scientific world attracted thereto, in the summer of 1882, by Prof. Frederick Wright’s recently published volume, “The Ice Age in North America,” a work scientific, but plain to the commonest understanding, intensely interesting and in inestimably valuable contribution to the sum of knowledge.


“The ice came down through the trough of the Ohio, and meeting with an obstruction crossed it so as to completely choke the channel, and form a glacial dam high enough to raise the level of the water five hundred and fifty feet—this being the height of the water shed to the south. The consequences following are interesting to trace.


“The bottom of the Ohio river at Cincinnati is 447 feet above the sea-level. A dam of 553 feet would raise the water in its rear to a height of 1,000 feet above the tide. This would produce a long narrow lake, of the width of the eroded trough of the Ohio, submerge the site of Pittsburg to a depth of 300 feet, and make slack-water up the Monongahela nearly to nearly to Grafton, W. Va., and up the Allegheny as far as Oil City.  All the tributaries of the Ohio would likewise be filled to this level with the back-water. The length of this slack-water in the main valley, to its termination up either the Allegheny or the Monongahela, was not far from one thousand miles. The conditions were also peculiar in this, that all the northern tributaries head within the southern margin of the ice-front, which lay at varying distances to the north. Down these northern tributaries there must have poured during the summer months immense torrents of water to strand bowlder-laden icebergs on the summits of such high hills as were lower than the level of the dam.”


“Prof. E. W. Claypole, in an article read before the Geological Society of Edinburgh, and published in their “Transactions,’’ has given a very vivid description of the scenes connected with the final breaking away of the ice-barrier at Cincinnati. He estimates that the body of water held in check by the dam occupied 20,000 square miles, and during the summer months, when the ice most rapidly melting away, it was supplied with water at a rate that would be equivalent to a rainfall of 160 feet in a year. This conclusion he arrives at by estimating that feet of ice would annually melt from the portion of the State which was glaciated, which is about twice the extent of the glaciated portion. Ten feet over the glaciated portion is equal to twenty feet of water the unglaciated. To this must be added an equal amount from the area farther back whose drainage was then into the upper Ohio. This makes forty feet per year water so contributed to this lake-basin. Furthermore, this supply would all be furnished in the six months of warm weather and to a large degree in the daytime, which gives the rate above mentioned.


The breaking away of the barrier to such body of water is no simple affair. As this writer remarks:


“The Ohio of to-day in flood is a terrible danger to the valley, but the Ohio then must have been a much more formidable river to the dwellers on its banks. The muddy waters rolled along, fed by innumerable rills of glacier-milk, and often charged with ice and stones. The first warm days of spring were the harbinger of the coming flood, which grew swifter and deeper as the summer came, and only subsided as the falling temperature of autumn locked up with frost the glacier fountains. The ancient Ohio river system was in its higher part a multitude of


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From Wright’s Ice Age in North America; by courtesy of D. Appleton & Co. Publishers;



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glacial torrents rushing off the ice-sheet, carrying all before them, waxing strong beneath the rising sun, till in the afternoon the roar of the waters and their stony burden reached its maximum, as the sun slowly sank again diminished, and gradually died away during the night, reaching its minimum at sunrise.


“But with the steady amelioration of the climate, more violent and sudden floods ensued. The increasing heat of summer compelled the retreat of the ice from the Kentucky shore, where Covington and Newport now lie, and so lowered its, surface that it fell below the previous out-flow point. The waters then took their course over the dam, instead of passing, as formerly, up the Licking and down the Kentucky river valleys. The spectacle of a great ice-cascade, or of long ice-rapids, was then exhibited at Cincinnati. This cataract or these rapids must have been several hundred feet high. Down these cliffs or this slope the water dashed, melting its own channel, and breaking up the foundations of its own dam. With the depression of the dam the level of the lake also fell. Possibly the change was gradual, and the dam and the lake went gently down together. Possibly, but not probably, this was the ease. Far more likely is it that the inciting was rapid, and that it sapped the strength of the dam faster than it lowered the water. This will be more probable if we consider the immense area to be drained. The catastrophe was then inevitable—the dam broke, and all the accumulated water of Lake Ohio was poured through the gap. Days or even weeks must have passed before it was all gone but at last its bed was dry. The upper Ohio valley was free from water, and Lake Ohio had passed away. 


But the whole tale is not yet told. Not once only did these tremendous floods occur. In the ensuing winter the dam was repaired by the advancing ice, relieved from the melting effects of the sun and of the floods. Year after year was this conflict repeated. How often we cannot tell. But there came at last a summer when the Cincinnati dam was broken for the last time when the winter with its snow and ice failed to renew it, when the channel remained permanently clear, and Lake Ohio had disappeared for-ever from the geography of North America.


How many years or ages this conflict between the lake and the dam continued it is quite impossible to say, but the quantity of wreckage found in the valley of the lower Ohio, and even in that of the Mississippi, below their point of junction, is sufficient to convince us that it was no short time. ‘The Age of Great Floods’ formed a striking episode in the story of the ‘Retreat of the Ice.’ Long afterwards much the valley have borne the marks of these disastrous torrents, far surpassing in intensity anything now known on earth. The great flood of 1855, when the ice-laden water slowly rose seventy-three feet above low-water mark, will long be remembered by Cincinnati and her inhabitants. But that flood, terrible as it was, sinks into insignificance beside the furious torrents caused by the sudden, even though partial, breach of an ice-dam hundreds of feet in height, and the discharge of a body of water held behind it, and forming a lake of 20,000 square miles in extent.


“To the human dwellers in the Ohio valley—for we have reason to believe that the valley was in that day tenanted by man—these floods must have proved disastrous in the extreme. It is scarcely likely that they were often forecast. The whole population of the bottom lands must have been repeatedly swept away; and it is far from being unlikely that in these and other similar catastrophes in different parts of the world, which characterized certain stages in the Glacial era, will be found the far-off basis on which rest those traditions of a flood that are found among almost all savage nations, especially in the north temperate zone.’’


Madisonville, eight miles northeast of Cincinnati (in a cross valley about five-miles in length, (connecting Mill creek with the Little Miami back of Avondale, Walnut Hills and the observatory), is an extremely interesting region, as connected with the glacial period. This valley, or depression, is generally level, from one to two miles wide, and about 200 feet above the low water-mark in the Ohio, and from 200 to 300 feet below the adjacent hills. It is occupied by a deposit of gravel, sand and loam, belonging to the glacial—terrace epoch. In the article, “Glacial Man in Ohio,” by Prof. Wright, in Vol. 1., page 93, is given a map of this region. The article also speaks of the discoveries of Dr. C. L. Metz of two palæolithic implements, which prove that man lived in Ohio before the close of the glacial period, say from 8,000 to 10,000 years ago before which there were no Niagara Falls and no Lake Erie.


The first implement was found at Madisonville by him, in 1885, while digging a cistern. ‘‘In making the excavation for this he penetrate the loam eight feet before reaching the gravel, and then near the surface of the gravel this implement was found. There is no chance for it to have been covered by any slide, for the plain is extensive and level-topped, and there had evidently been no previous disturbance of the gravel.” “It is not smoothed, but simply rudely chipped


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pointed weapon about three inches long.” The other palæolithic was found by Dr. Metz, in the spring of 1887, in an excavation in a similar deposit near Loveland, some thirty feet below the surface, and near where some mastodon bones had previously been found. It was an oblong stone about six inches long, four and a half inches wide, which had here been chipped all around to an edge. Similar discovers have since been made in Tuscarawas county.


Dr. Metz has favored us with the following articles upon discoveries in the mounds and earthworks of the lost race which inhabited this region after the glacial era. They are all upon the surface, being built upon the summits of the glacial-terraces or upon the present flood plains.




The territory comprising Hamilton county appears to have been one of the great centres of the aboriginal inhabitants. This is evidenced by the great number of earthworks, mounds and extensive burial places found throughout the county.


Mounds and Earthworks.—The mounds and the earthworks are found most numerous in the valleys of the Little and Great Miami, and in the region between the Little Miami and Ohio rivers. Of the mounds, 437 have been observed in the county, the largest of which is located on the Levi MARTIN estate, about one mile east of the village of Newtown. The dimensions of this mound from actual measurements are as follows: Circumference at base, 625 feet width at base, 150 feet; length at base, 250 feet; perpendicular height, 40 feet.


Earth Enclosures. —Of the earthworks, or enclosures, fifteen in number have been located, the principal ones being the “Fortified Hill” near the mouth of the great Miami river, figured and describes by Squire and Davis in their “Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley “[see Plate IX., No. 2, Vol I., Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge], and the very interesting earth-works located on the lands of Mr. Michael Turner, near the junction of the East Fork and Little Miami river in Anderson township, and which the writer takes the liberty to designate as the “Whittlesey and Turner group of works.” This group of works was first described by T. C. Day, Esq., in a paper en-titled “The Antiquities of the Miami Valley,” Cincinnati Chronicle, November, 1839, and subsequently, in 1850, were surveyed and described by Col. Charles Whittlesey in Vol. III., Article 7, Smithsonian Contributions to Knowledge. Of this work, Mr. Day says: “The site of this stupendous fortification, if we may so call it, is a few rods to the right of the road leading from Newtown to Milford, and about midway between them. It is situated on a ridge of land that juts out from the third bottom of the Little Miami, and reaches within 300 yards of its bed. From the top of the ridge to low water-mark is probably 100 feet. It terminates with quite a sharp point, and its sides are very abrupt, bearing evident marks of having once been swept by some stream of water, probably the Miami. It forms an extremity of an immense bend, curving into what is now called the third bottom, but which is evidently of alluvial formation. Its probable height is forty feet, and its length about a quarter of a mile be-fore it expands out and forms the third alluvial bottom. About 150 yards from the extreme point of this ridge, the ancient workmen ‘having cut a ditch directly through it, it is thirty feet in depth, its length, a semi-circular curve, is 500 feet, and its width at the top is eighty feet, having a level base of forty feet. At the time of its formation it was probably cut to the base of the ridge, but the washing of the rains has filled it up to its present height. Forty feet from the western side of the ditch is placed the low circular wall of the fort, which describes in its circumference an area of about four acres. The wall is probably three feet in mean height, and is composed of clay occasionally mixed with small fiat river stone. It keeps at an exact distance from the top of the ditch, but approaches nearer to the edge of the ridge. The form of the fort is a perfect circle, and is 200 yards in diameter. Its western side is defended with a ditch, cut through in the same manner as the one on the eastern side. Its width and depth is the same, but its length is greater by 200 feet, as the ridge is that much wider than where the other is cut through. The wall of this fort keeps exactly the same distance from the top of this ditch as of the other, viz: forty feet. Its curve is exactly the opposite of that of the other, so as to form two segments of a circle. At the southeastern side of the fort there is an opening in the wall thirty-six yards wide, and opposite this opening is one of the most marked features of this wonderful monument. A causeway extends out from the ridge about 300 feet in length, 100 feet in width, with a gradual descent to the alluvial bottom at its base. The material of its construction is evidently a portion of the earth excavated from the ditches... “To defend this entrance they raised a mound of earth seven feet high, forty wide and seventy-five long. It is placed about 100 feet from the mouth of the cause-way, and is so situated that its garrison could sweep it to its base.” The mound above referred to was explored by the writer under the auspices of Prof. F. W. Putnam, curator of the Peabody Museum of American Archeology and Ethnology, Cambridge, Mass.,

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and we quote from their Sixteenth Annual Report: “The large mound provide a most interesting structure, unlike anything heretofore discovered. It contained a small central tumulus, surrounded, carefully built stone-wall and covered in by a platform of Stones, over which was a mass of clay. On this wall were two depressions in each of which a body had been laid, and outside the wall In the surrounding clay were found several skeletons, one of them lying upon a platform of stones. With these skeletons were found a copper celt, ornaments made of copper and shell, and large sea-shells. With each of three of the skeletons was a pair of the spool-shaped ear ornaments of copper, and in every instance these ornaments were found one on either side near the skull.”


Large, Earth Enclosure. —From the base of the graded way heretofore described extend two embankments forming the segments of an oblong oval, enclosing an area of about 10 acres. These embankments extend in an easterly direction, gradually approaching each other until the opening or gateway, 150 feet in width, remains. To protect this gateway a mound is erected just within the opening, having a diameter at base of 125 feet and a perpendicular height of seven feet. Within the above enclosure are fourteen mounds and one large circular embankment, having a diameter of 300 feet and a gateway to the south sixty feet wide. Near the northern side of this circular enclosure was a small mound covering a stone cist containing a human skeleton. 


Altar Mounds.—On the southern side of the oval was a group of eight mounds. Several of these mounds contained “Altars” or basings of burnt clay, on two of which there were thousands of objects of interest, which are described as follows by Prof. Putnam in his report Two of these altars, each about four feet square, were cut out and brought to the museum. Among the objects from the altars are numerous ornaments and carvings unlike any-thing we have had before.


“One altar contained about two bushels of ornaments made of stone, copper, mica. shells, the canine teeth of bears and other animals, and thousands of pearls (50,000 have been counted and sorted from the mass). Nearly all of these objects are perforated in various ways for suspension. Several of the copper ornaments are covered with native silver, which had been hammered out into thin sheets and folded over the copper. Among these are a bracelet and a bead, and several of the spool-shaped ear ornaments.


“Gold in Mound,—One small copper pendent seems to have been covered with a thin sheet of gold, a portion of which still adheres to the copper, while other bits of it were found in the mass of material. This is the first time that native gold has been found in the mounds, although hundreds have been explored. The ornaments cut out of copper and mica are very interesting, and embrace many forms. Among them is a sheet of mica.


Several ornaments of this material resemble the heads of animals whose features are emphasized by a red color, while others are the form of circles and bands. Many of the copper ornaments are large and of peculiar shape; others are scrolls, scalloped circles, oval pendants and other forms. There are about thirty of the singular spool-shaped objects or ear-rings made of copper. Three large sheets of mica were on this altar, and several finely-chipped points of obsidian, chalcedony and chert were in the mass of materials.


“There were several pendants cut from a micaceous schist and of a unique of work.  There are also portions of a circular piece of bone, over the surface of which are incised figures, and flat pieces of shell similarly carved. Several masses of native copper were on the altar.


Meteoric Iron and Terra-Cotta Figurines.—But by far the most important things found on this altar were the several masses of meteoric iron and the ornaments made from this metal. One of these is half of a spool-shaped object like those made of copper, with which it was associated. Another ear-ornament of copper is covered with a thin plating of the iron in the smile manner its others were covered with silver. “Three of the masses of iron have been more or less hammered into bars, as if for the purpose of making some ornament or implement, another is apparently in the natural shape in which it was found.” “On another altar in another mound of the group were several terra-cotta figurines of character heretofore unknown from the mounds.


“Unfortunately these objects as well as others found on the altars have been more or less burnt, and many of them appear to have been purposely broken before they were placed on the altars.


Many pieces of these images have been united, and it is my hope that we shall succeed in nearly restoring some of them.


“Enough has already been made out to show the peculiar method of wearing the hair; the singular head-dress and large button-like ear-ornaments shown by those human figures are of particular interest. On the same altar with the figurines were two remarkable dishes carved from stone in the form of animals; with these was a serpent cut out of mica, On the altar were several hundred quartz pebbles from the river, and nearly 300 astragali of deer and elk. As but two of these bones could lie obtained from a single animal, and as theme were but one or two fragments of other bones, there must have been some special and important reason for collecting so large a number of these particular bones.


“A fine-made bracelet made of copper amid covered with silver and several other ornaments of copper, a few pearls and shells and other ornaments were also on this altar.’’ Near the last group of earth-works are two parallel ways or embankments, 100 feet apart and extending one-half mile in length north-westwardly across the lands of Mr. Gano MARTIN.”



Small Earth Enclosures.—Of the smaller earth enclosures, the one in the Stites Grove, near Plainville, is in the best state of preservation, inner ditch, across which in a causeway leading to an opening in the embankment to the southeast. Numerous ancient burial places are found in the county, and the mortuary customs are varied, indicating that the territory has been occupied by various tribes at different periods. We find the stonecist burials, burials under flat stones, burials in stone circles, burials in the drift gravel beds, burials in pits in the horizontal and also in the sitting position, original moved burials, intrusive mound burials and evidences of cremation.


Ancient Cemetery, Near Madisonville, O.—The most extensive and interesting of the ancient burial places is the one known as the pre-historic cemetery, near Madisonville, Ohio, which has become noted for its singular ash-pits as well as for the skeletons buried in or at the bottom of the leaf-mould covering the pits. One thousand and sixty-five skeletons, 700 ash-pits, upwards of 300 earthen vases, numerous implements of bone, horn, shell, copper and stone have been found.


The Ash-pits are discovered after twelve to twenty-four inches of the leaf-mould has been removed and the hard pan or clay is reached, when the pit is discovered by a circular discoloration or black spot. There ash-pits as they have been well named, are circular excavations in the hard pan of the plateau, from there to four feet in diameter and from four to seven feet deep. The contents themselves are of peculiar interest, and the purpose for which they were made is still a mystery. The average pit may be said to be filled with ashes in more or less defined layers. Some of the layers near the top seem to be mixed with the surrounding gravel to a greater or less extent; but generally, after removing the contents of the upper third of the pit, a mass of fine gray ashes is found, which is formed a few inches over two feet in thickness.


Sometimes this mass of ashes contains thin strata of charcoals, sand or gravel. Throughout the mass of ashes and sand, from the top of the pit to the bottom, are bones of fishes, reptiles, birds and mammals. With the bones are the shells of several species of unionidae. These are also found in these pits large pieces of pottery, also a large number of implements made of bones of deer, and elk antlers have been found. Those made of elk antlers are in most cases adapted from digging or agriculture purposes, and often so large and so well made as to prove that they are effective implements. Among other objects made of bone are beads, small whistles, or bird-calls, made form hollow bone of birds, also flat and cylindrical pieces with “tally” notches and marks cuts upon them, short round pieces of antler carefully cut and polished together, with arrow points drills scarpers and other chipped instruments of stone. A few polished celts and several rough hammer stones have been found in the pits.


Corn-Pit.—A number of objects copper, particularly beads, have been taken from these pits, as have also several pipes of various shapes cut out of stone. One pit discovered August 26, 1879, known as the “corn-pit,” is of peculiar interest. The dept of this pit was six feet, its diameter three feet.  The layers or strata from above downwards were:


1st, Leaf-mould 24 inches; 2d, Gravel and clay 15 inches; 3d, Ashes containing animal remains, pottery shards, unio shells 10 inches; 4th Bark, twigs and matting 4 inches; 5th Carbonized shell corn 4 inches; 6th, Layer of twigs, matting and corn leaves 2 inches; 7th, Carbonized corn in ear 6 inches; 8th, Boulders covering the bottom of the pit 6 inches.


Immediately along-side of this pit was another the same depth, 3 feet 7 inches in diameter; containing leaf-mold, 24 inches; ashes with animal remains, fragments of pottery, shells, etc., 4 feet.


The bottom layer of all the pits was invariable ashes, and in the ashes were found, in good state of preservation, bone implements, representing fish hooks, fish spears, bone and horn digging tools, bone beads, solid cylinders of bone two to three inches in length, one-fourth to one-half inch in diameter, bone awls, needles, fifes, grooved ones, cut pieces of antler of deer and elk, copper beads, perforated unios, together with numerous animals remains; of these many were identified as belonging to the deer, elk, bear, buffalo, raccoon, opossum, mink, woodchuck, beaver, various species of birds and water fowls, turkey, fish, together with various species of unio shell.


Pottery.—The skeletons were buried in the horizontal position, and are generally found at a depth of from eighteen inches to three feet; with the skeletons have been found a number of vessels of pottery; the most common of these are small cooking-pots with pointed bottoms and four handles. Most of the vessels are simply cord-marked, but some are found ornamental within the incised lines, or with circular indentations. Several have been obtained on which were small and rudely made medallion figures representing the human face.


Lizard Ornamentation.—On one pot a similarly formed head is on the edge so as to face the inside of the vessel. One vessel lent to the Smithsonian Institute has luted ornates representing the human face on either side between the handles. A half dozen small vessels have a very interesting form of decoration; these are known as lizard or salamander pots. On some of these vessels the salamander, which is fairly modeled, is on the surface of the broad, flat handles on opposite sides, on others these ornaments are places between the handles. And on one they from the handles. In all, the head of the salamander is on the edge or lip of the vessel, and in one or two is carried a little to the inside. A few other forms of vessels are represented by single specimens. Such are an ordinary pot attached to a hollow stand a few inches high, two vessels

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joined together, one above the other, the upper without a bottom, the two having eight handles, and a flat, long dish with two handles and a flat, long dish with two handles at each end. 


The pre-historic cemetery, near Madisonville, occupies an area of about fifteen acres covered with vast forest trees. Many of the skeletons and pits are found beneath the roots of large oak, walnut or maple trees.


Mardelles or Dug-outs.—In the county are two of the circular excavations designated as “mardelles” have been found. The best preserved of this class of works is the one situated on the lands of the John TURNER estate, two miles northeast of the village of Newtown.


This pit has a diameter of sixty feet at the top, depth in the centre twelve feet; six feet from the edge of the pit is a well-marked embankment conforming to the circular edge of the pit. The embankment is two feet high, eight feet wide at the base, and is interrupted by a gate-way or opening fifteen feet wide at the east. There are many interesting objects in the county that warrant a detailed description, we can, however, but briefly call attention to the terraced hill at Red Bank and the old road-way in Section 11, Columbia Township.


The hill at Red Bank, just north from the railway station, has an elevation of about 300 feet, and is terraced on its eastern and southern slopes. The terraces are five in number, and are undoubtedly the work of human hands. This hill is surmounted by a small mound. The ancient road-way in Section 11, Columbia Township, near Madisonville, is cut along the face of the steep hill extending from the creek in a south-westwardly direction to the top of the hill ending near the DARLING homestead. The road-way is upward of 1,600 feet in length, having an average width of twenty-five feet, and is overgrown with large forest trees.


Implements of Preglacial Men.—Evidences of preglacial men having existed in Ohio have been given by the finding of rudely chipped pointed implements Madisonville and at Loveland in the glacial deposits as before stated. The discovery of the altar mounds in the Little Miami Valley similar to those discovered and explored by Squire and Davis in the Scioto Valley, near Chillicothe, would indicate that the territory that is now known as Ross and Hamilton counties was once the great centre of the pre-historic population of Southern Ohio.



Hamilton county was the second settled in Ohio. Washington, the first, has its first settlement at Marietta, April 7, 1788.  The country between the Great and Little Miamis had been the scene of so many fierce conflicts between Kentuckians and Indians in there raids to and fro that it was termed the “Miami Slaughter House,” In June, 1788 and the period of the Revolutionary war, Captain BYRD, in command of 600 British and Indians with artillery from Detroit, came down the Big Miami and ascended the Licking opposite Cincinnati on his noted expedition into Kentucky, when he destroyed several stations and did great mischief. And in the August following Gen. Rogers CLARK, with his Kentuckians, took up his line of march from the site of Cincinnati for the Shawnee towns on Little Miami and Mad rivers, which he destroyed. On this campaign he erected two blockhouses on the north side of the Ohio. These were the first structured known to have been built on the site of the city.


The beautiful country between the Miamis had been so infested by the Indians, that it was avoided by the whites, and its settlement might have been procrastinated for years, but for the discovery and enterprise of Major Benjamin STITES, a trader from New Jersey. In the summer of 1786, SITTES happened to be at Washington, just back of Limestone, now Maysville, where he headed a party of Kentuckians in pursuit of some Indians who had stolen some horses. They followed for some days; the latter escaped, but STITES gained by it a view of the rich valleys of the Great and Little Miami as far up as the site of Xenia. With this knowledge, and charmed by the beauty of the country, he hurried back to New Jersey, and revealed his discovery to Judge John Cleves SYMMES, of Trenton, at that time a member or Congress and a man of great influence. This result was the formation of a company of twenty-four gentlemen of the State, similar to that of the Ohio Company, as proprietors of the proposed purchase. Among these were General Jonathan DAYTON, Elias BOUDINOT, and Dr. WITHERSPOON, as well as SYMMES and STITES. SYMMES, in August of next year, 1787, petitioned Congress for a grant of the land, but before the bargain was closed he made arrangements with STITES to sell him 10,000 acres of the best land.

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Under the contract with SYMMES, STITES, with a party of eighteen or twenty, landed on the 18th of November, 1788, and laid out the village of Columbia below the mouth of the Little Miami; it is now within the limits of the city, five miles east of Fountain Square.


The settlers were superior men. Among them were Col. SPENCER, Major GANO, Judge GOFORTH, Francis DUNLAVY, Major KIBBERY, Rev. John SMITH, Judge FOSTER, Columbus BROWN, Mr. HUBBELL, Capt. FLINN, Jacob WHITE and John RILEY, and for several years the settlement was the most populous and successful.


Two or three blockhouses era first erected for the protection of the women and children, and then log-cabins for the families. The boats in which they had come from Maysville, then Limestone, where broken up and used from the doors, floors, etc., to these rude buildings. They had at that time no trouble from the Indians, which arose from the fact that they were then gathered at Fort Harmar to make a treaty with the whites. Wild game was plenty, but their breadstuffs and salt soon gave out, and as a substitute they occasionally used various roots, taken from native plant, the bear grass especially when the spring of 1789 opened their prospects grew brighter. The fine bottoms on the Little Miami had long been cultivated by the savages, and were found mellow as ash heaps. The men worked in divisions, one-half keeping guard with their rifles while the other worked, changing their employments morning and afternoon.


Turkey Bottom, on the Little Miami, one and a half miles above Columbia, was a clearing in area of a square mile, for a long while, and supplied both Columbia and the garrison at Fort Washington at Cincinnati with corn for a season. From nine acres of Turkey Bottom, the tradition goes, the enormous crop of 963 bushels were gathered the very first season.


Before this the women and children from Columbia early visited Turkey Bottom to scratch up the bulbous roots of the bear grass. There they boiled, washed, dried on smooth boards, and finally pounded into a species of flour, which served as a tolerable substitute for making various baking operations. Many of the families subsisted for a time entirely on the roots of the bear grass; and there was great suffering for provisions until they could grow corn.


Settlement of Cincinnati.


The facts connected with the settlement of Cincinnati are these; In the winter of 1787-1788 Matthias DENMAN, of Springfield, New Jersey, purchased of John Clees SYMMES, a tract of land comprising 740 acres, now but a small part of the city, his object being to form a station, lay out a town on the Ohio side opposite the mouth of the Licking river, and establish a ferry, garrison at Detroit here crossed the Ohio, and here was the usual avenue by which savages from the north had invaded Kentucky. DENMAN paid five shillings per acre in Continental scrip, or about fifteen pence per acre in specie, or less that $125 in specie for the entire plot.


DENMAN the next summer associates with him two gentlemen of Lexington, Ky., each having one-third interest, Col. Robert PATTERSON and John FILSON. The first was a gallant soldier of the Indian wars, and John FILSON, a school-master and surveyor, and author of various works upon the West, of which he had been an explorer, one of the “the Discover, Settlement and Present State of Kentucky,” published in 1784; also a map of the same. FILSON was to survey the site and lay it out into lots, thirty in-lots of half an acre and thirty out-lots for four acres to be given thirty settlers of their paying $1.50 for deed and survey. He called the proposed town Losantiville, a name formed by him from the Latin “os” mouth, the Greek, “anti,” opposite, and the French “ville,” city, from its position opposite the mouth of the Licking river. And this name is retained until the advent of Gov. ST. CLAIR, January 2, 1790, who, being a member of the old Revolutionary army Society of Cincinnatus, expressed a desire the name should be changed to Cincinnati, when his wish was complied with.


Preliminary Exploration.—In September, 1788, a large party, embracing SYMMES, STITIES, DENMAN, PATTERSON, FILSON, LUDLOW with others, in all about sixty men, left Limestone to visit the new Miami Purchase of SYMMES. They landed at the mouth of the Great Miami, and explored the country from some distance back from that and North Bend, at which point SYMMES then decided to make a settlement. The party surveyed 

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the distance between the two Miamis, following the meanders of the Ohio, and returned to Limestone.


On this trip FILSON became separated from his companions while in the rear of North Bend and was never heard of, having doubtless been killed by the Indians, a fate of which he always seemed to have a presentiment. Israel LUDLOW, who had intended to act as surveyor for SYMMES, now accepted FILSON’S interest, and assumed his duties in laying out Losantiville.


Landing at Cincinnati.—On the 24th of December, 1788 DENMAN and PATTERSON, with twenty-six others, left Limestone in a boat to found Losantiville. After much difficulty and danger from floating ice in the river, they arrived at the spot on or about the 28th, the exact being in dispute. The precise spot of their landing was an inlet at the foot of Sycamore street, later known as Yeatman’s Cove.


LUDLOW laid out the town. On the 7th of January ensuing the settlers by lottery decided on their choice of donation lots, the same being given to each in fee simple on condition: 1. Raising two crops successively, and not less than an acre for each crop. 2. Building within two years a house equal to twenty-five feet square, one and half stories high, with brick, stone or clay chimney, each to stand in front of their lots. The following is a list of the settlers who so agreed, thirty in number: Samuel BLACKBORN, Sylvester WHITE, Joseph THRONTON, John VANCE, James DUMONT,  — FUTON, Elijah MARTIN, Isaac VAN METER, Thomas GISSEL, David MCCLEVER,   — DAVIDSON, Matthew CAMPBELL, James MONSON, James, MCCONNELL, Noah BADGELY, James CARPENTER, Samuel MOONEY, James CAMPBELL,  Isaac FREEMAN, Scott TRAVERSE, Benjamin DUMONT, Jesse STWWART, Henry BECHTLE, Richard STEWARD, Luther KITCHNELL, Ephraim KIBBEY, Henry LIDNSEY, John PORTER, Daniel SHOEMAKER, Joel WILLIAMS.


The thirty in-lots in general terms comprised the space back from the standing between Main street and Broadway, and there was the town began.


The North Bend settlement was the third within the SYMMES Purchase, and was made under the immediate care of Judge SYMMES. He called it North Bend because it is the most northerly bend on the Ohio west of the Kanawha. The Judge with his party of adventurers left Limestone January 29, 1789, only about a month after that of DENMAN at Cincinnati, and two months after that of STITES at Columbia. The history of this with other connecting historical items we extracted from Burnet’s Notes:


The party, on their passage down the river, were obstructed, delayed and exposed to imminent danger from floating ice, which covered the river. They, however, reached the Bend, the place of their destination, in safety, early in February. The first object of the Judge was to found a city at that place, which had received the name of North Bend, from the fact that it was the most northern bend in the Ohio river below the mouth of the Great Kanawhia.


The water-craft used in descending the Ohio, in those primitive times, were flat-boats mode of green oak plank, fastened by wooden pins to a frame of timber, and caulked with tow, or any other pliant substance that could be procured. Boats similarly constructed on the northern waters were then called arks, but on the western rivers they were denominated Kentucky boats. The materials of which they were composed were found to be of great utility in the construction of temporary buildings for safety, and for protection from the inclemency of the weather, after they had arrived at their destination.


At the earnest solicitation of the Judge, General HARMAR sent Captain KEARSEY with forty-eight rank and file, to protect the improvements just commencing in the Miami country. This detachment reached Limestone in December, 1788, and in a few days after, Captain KEARSEY sent a part of his command in advance, as a guard to protect the pioneers under Major STITES, at the Little Miami, where they arrived soon after. Mr. SYMMES and his party, accompanied by Captain KEARSEY, landed at Columbia, on their passage down the river, and the detachment previously sent to that place joined their company. They then proceeded to the Bend, and landed about the first or second of February. When they left Limestone, it was the purpose of Captain KEARSEY to occupy the fort built at the mouth of the Miami, by a detachment of United States troops, who afterwards descended the river to the falls.


That purpose was defeated by the flood in the river, which had spread over the low grounds and tendered it difficult to reach the fort. Captain KEARSEY, however, was anxious to make the attempt, but the Judge would not consent to it; he was, of course, much disappointed, and greatly displeased. When he set out on the expedition, expecting to find a fort ready built to receive him, he did not provide the implements necessary to construct one. Thus disappointed and displeased, he resolved that he would not build a new work, but would leave the Bend and join the garrison at Louisville.


In pursuance of that resolution, he embarked early in March, and descended the river with his command. The Judge immediately wrote to Major WILLIS, commandant of the garrison at the Falls, complaining of the conduct of Captain KEARSEY, representing the exposed situation of the Miami settlement, stating the indications of hostility manifested by the Indians, and requesting a guard to be sent to the Bend. This request

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was promptly granted, and before the close of the month, Ensign LUCE arrived with seventeen or eighteen soldiers, which, for the time, removed the apprehensions of the pioneers at that place. It was not long, however, before the Indians made an attack on them, in which they killed one soldier, and wounded four or five other persons, including Major J. R. MILLS, an emigrant from Elizabethtown, New Jersey, who was a surveyor, and an intelligent and highly respected citizen. Although he recovered from his wounds, he felt their disabling effects to the day of his death.


SYMMES CITY LAID OUT—The surface of the ground where the Judge and his party had landed was above the reach of the water, and sufficiently level to admit of a convenient settlement. He therefore deter-mined, for the immediate accommodation of his party, to lay out a village at that place, and to suspend, for the present, the execution of his purpose, as to the city, of which he had given notice, until satisfactory information could be obtained in regard to the comparative advantages of different places in the vicinity. The determination, however of laying out such a city, was not abandoned, but was executed in the succeeding year on a magnificent scale. It included the village, and extended from the Ohio across the peninsula to the Miami river. This city, which was certainly a beautiful one, on paper, was called Symmes, and for a time was a subject of conversation and of criticism but it soon ceased to be remembered—even its name was forgotten, and the settlement continued to be called North Bend. Since then, that village has been distinguished as the residence and the home of the soldier and statesman, William Henry HARRISON, whose remains now repose in a humble vault on one of its beautiful hills.


In conformity with a stipulation made at Limestone, every individual belonging to the party received a donation lot, which he was required to improve, as the condition of obtaining a title. As the number of these adventurers increased in consequence of the protection afforded by the military, the Judge was induced to lay out another village, six or seven miles higher up the river, which he called South Bend, where he disposed of some donation lots; but that project failed. And in a few years the village was deserted and converted into a farm.


Indian Interviews. —During these transactions, the Judge was visited by a number of Indians from a camp in the neighborhood of Stites’ settlement. One of them, a Shawnee chief, had many complaints to make of frauds practiced on them by white traders, who fortunately had no connection with the pioneers. After several conversations, and some small presents, he professed to be satisfied with the explanation he had received, and gave assurances that the Indians would trade with the white men as friends.


In one of their interviews, the Judge told him he had been commissioned and sent out to their country, by the thirteen fires, in the sprit of friendship and kindness and that he was instructed to treat them as friends and brothers. In proof of this he showed them the flag of the Union, with its stars and stripes and also his commission, having the great seal of the United States attached to it exhibiting the American eagle, with the olive branches in one claw, emblematical of peace, and the instrument of war and death in the other. He explained the meaning of those symbols to their satisfaction, though at first the chief seemed to think they were not very striking emblems either of peace or friendship but before be departed from the Bend, he gave assurances of the most friendly character. Yet, when they left their camp to return to their towns, they carried off a number of horses belonging to the Columbia settlement, to compensate for the injuries done them by wandering traders, who had no part or lot with the pioneers. These depredations having been repeated, a party was sent out in pursuit, who followed the trail of the Indians a considerable distance, when they discovered fresh signs, and sent Captain FLINN, one of their party, in advance, to reconnoitre. He had not proceeded far before he was surprised, taken prisoner, and carried to the Indian camp. Not liking the movements he saw going on which seemed to indicate personal violence, in regard to himself, and having great confidence in his activity and strength, at a favorable moment he sprang from the camp, made his escape, and joined his party. The Indians, fearing an ambuscade, did not pursue. The party possessed themselves of several horses belonging to the Indians, and returned to Columbia. In a few days, the Indians brought in Captain FLINN’S rifle, and begged Major STITES to re-store their horses—alleging that they were innocent of the depredations laid to their charge. After some further explanations, the matter was amicably settled, and the horses were given up.


The three principal settlements of the Miami country, although they had one general object, and were threatened by one common danger, yet there existed a strong spirit of rivalry between them—each feeling a pride in the prosperity of the little colony to which be belonged. That spirit produced a strong influence on the feelings of the pioneers of the different villages, and produced an esprit du corps, scarcely to be expected under circumstances so critical and dangerous as those which threatened them. At first it was a matter of doubt which of the rivals, Columbia, Cincinnati or North Bend, would eventually become the chief seat of business.


That, however, lasted but a short time. The garrison having been established at Cincinnati made it the headquarters and the depot of the army. In addition to this, as soon as the county courts of the territory were organized, it was made the seat of justice of Hamilton county. These advantages convinced everybody that it was destined to become the emporium of the Miami country.

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Privations of the Settlers.—A large number of the original adventurers to the Miami purchase had exhausted their means by paying for their land, and removing their families to the country. Others were wholly destitute of property, and came out as volunteers, under the expectation of obtaining, gratuitously, such small tracts of land as might be forfeited by the purchasers, under Judge SYMMES, for not making the improvements required by the conditions stipulated in the terms of sale and settlement of Miami lands, published by the Judge, in 1787. The class of adventurers first named was comparatively numerous, and had come out under an expectation of taking immediate possession of their lands, and of commencing the cultivation of then for subsistence. Their situation, therefore, was distressing. To go out into the wilderness to till the soil appeared to be certain death; to remain in the settlements threatened them with starvation. The best provided of the pioneers found it difficult to obtain subsistence; and, of course, the class now spoken of were not far from total destitution. They depended on game, fish, and such products of the earth as could be raised on small patches of ground in the immediate vicinity of the settlements.


Occasionally, small lots of provision were brought down the river by emigrants, and sometimes were transported on pack-horses, from Lexington, at a heavy expense, and not without danger. But supplies, thus procured, were beyond the reach of those destitute persons now referred to.


Stations Established.—Having endured these privations as long as they could be borne, the more resolute of them determined to brave the consequences of moving on to their lands. To accomplish the object with the least exposure, those whose lands were in the same neighborhood united as one family; and on that principle, a number of associations were formed, amounting to a dozen or more who went out resolved to maintain their positions.


Each party erected a strong block-house, near to which their cabins were put up, and the whole was enclosed by strong log pickets. This being done, they commenced clearing their lands, and preparing for planting their crops. During the day, while they were at work, one person was placed as a sentinel, to warn them of approaching danger. At sun-set they retired to the block-house and their cabins, taking everything of value within the pickets. In this manner they proceeded front day to day, and week to week, till their improvements were sufficiently extensive to support their families. During this time, they depended for subsistence on wild game, obtained at some hazard, more than on the scanty supplies they were able to procure from the settlements on the river.


In a short time these stations gave protection and food to a large number of destitute families. After they were established, the Indians became less annoying to the settlements on the Ohio, as part of their time was employed in watching the stations. The former, however, did not escape, but endured their share of the fruits of savage hostility. In fact, no place or situation was exempt from danger. The safety of the pioneer depended on his means of defense, and on perpetual vigilance.


The Indians viewed those stations with great jealousy, as they had the appearance of permanent military establishments, intended to retain possession of their country. In that view they were correct and it was fortunate for the settlers that the Indians wanted either the skill or the means of demolishing them.


The truth of the matter is, their great error consisted in permitting those works to be constructed at all. They might have prevented it with great ease, but they appeared not to be aware of the serious consequences which were to result, until it was too late to act with effect. Several attacks were, however, made at different, times, with an apparent determination to destroy them; but they failed in every instance. The assault made on the station erected by Captain Jacob WHITE, a pioneer of much energy and enterprise, at the third crossing of Mill creek from Cincinnati, on the old Hamilton road was resolute and daring but it was gallantly met and successfully repelled. During the attack, which was in the night, Captain WHITE add killed a warrior, who fell so near the block-house, that his companions could not remove his body. The next morning it was brought in, and judging from his stature, as reported by the inmates, he might have claimed descent from a race of giants. On examining the ground in the vicinity of the block-house, the appearances of blood indicated that the assailants had suffered severely.


DUNLAP’S STATION ATTACKED —In the winter of 1790-1, an attack was made, with a strong party, amounting, probably, to four or five hundred, on Dunlap’s station, at Colerain. The block-house at that place was occupied by a small number of United States troops, commanded by Col. KINGSBURY, then a subaltern in the army. The fort was furnished with a piece of artillery, which was an object of terror to the Indians yet that did not deter them from an attempt to effect their purpose. Time attack was violent, and for some time the station was in imminent danger.


The savages were led by the notorious Simon GIRTY, and outnumbered the garrison, at least, ten to one. The works were entirely of wood, and the only obstacle between the assailants and the assailed was a picket of logs, that might have been demolished, with a loss not exceeding, probably, twenty or thirty lives. The garrison displayed unusual gallantry—they frequently exposed their persons above the pickets to insult and provoke the assailants; and judging from the facts reported, they conducted with as much folly as bravery.


Col. John WALLACE, of Cincinnati, one of the earliest arid bravest of the pioneers, and

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was amiable as he was brave, was in the fort when the attack was made. Although the works were completely surrounded by the enemy, the colonel volunteered his services to go to Cincinnati for a reinforcement. The fort stood on the east bank of the Big Miami. Late in the night he was conveyed across the river in a canoe, and landed on the opposite shore. Having passed down some miles below the fort, he swam the river, and directed his course for Cincinnati. On his way down, the next day, he met a body of men from that place and from Columbia, proceeding to Colerain. They had been in-formed of the attack, by persons hunting in the neighborhood, who were sufficiently near the fort to hear the firing when it began.


He joined the party, and led them to the station by the same route lie had traveled from it; but before they arrived, the Indians had taken their departure. It was afterwards ascertained that Mr. Abner HUNT a respect-able citizen of New Jersey, who was on a surveying tour in the neighborhood of Colerain, at the time of the attack, was killed before he could reach the fort. His body was afterward found, shockingly mangled.


The Indians tied HUNT to a sapling, within sight of the garrison, who distinctly heard his screams and built a large fire so near as to scorch him inflicting the most acute pain then, as his flesh, from the action of the fire and the frequent application of live coals, became less sensible making deep incisions in his limbs as if to renew his sensibility of pain; answering his cries for water, to allay the extreme thirst caused by burning, by fresh tortures; and, finally, when, exhausted and fainting, death seemed approaching to release the wretched prisoner, terminating his sufferings by applying flaming brands to his naked bowels.’"




Soon as the settlers of Cincinnati landed (December, 1788) they commenced erecting three or four cabins, the first of which was built on Front, east of and near Main street. The lower table of land was then covered with sycamore and maple trees, and the upper with beech and oak. Through this dense forest the streets were laid out, their corners being marked upon the trees. This survey extended from Eastern row, now Broadway, to Western row, now Central Avenue, and from the river as far north as to Northern row, now Seventh street.


Fort Washington was built in the fall of 1789 by Major DOUGHTY, the commander of a body of troops sent by Gen. HARMAR from Fort Harmar with discretionary power to locate a fort in the Miami country. The site selected was a little east of Broadway just outside of the village limits, and where Third street now crosses it. The fort was a solid, substantial fortress of hewn timber about 180 feet square with block-houses at the four angles and two stories high. Fifteen acres were then reserved there by government. It was the most important and extensive military work then in time Territories, and figured largely in the Indian wars of the period. Gen. HARMAR arrived and took command late in December, its garrison then comprising seventy men.


In January, 1790, Gen. Arthur ST. CLAIR, then governor of the Northwest Territory, arrived at Cincinnati to organize the county of Hamilton. In the succeeding fall Gen. HARMAR marched from Fort Washington on his expedition against the Indians of the Northwest. In the following year (1791) the unfortunate army of ST CLAIR marched from the same place. On his return, ST. CLAIR gave Major ZEIGLER the command of Fort Washington and repaired to Philadelphia, soon after the latter was succeeded by Col. WILKINSON. This year Cincinnati had little increase in its population. About one-half of the inhabitants were attached to the army of ST. CLAIR, and many killed in the defeat.


In 1792 about fifty persons were added by immigration to the population of Cincinnati, and a house of worship erected. In the spring following the troops which had been recruited for WAYNE’S army landed at Cincinnati and encamped on the bank of the river, between the village of Cincinnati and Mill creek. To that encampment Wayne gave the name of “Hobson’s Choice,” it being the only suitable place for that object. This was just west of Central avenue. Here he remained several months, constantly drilling his troops, and then moved on to a spot now in Darke county, where he erected Fort Greenville. In the fall, after the army had left, the small-pox broke out in the garrison at Fort Washington, and spread with so much malignity that nearly one-third of the soldiers and citizens fell victims. In July, 1794, the army left Fort Greenville, and on the

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20th of August defeated the enemy at the battle of “the Fallen Timbers,” in what is now Lucas county, a few miles above Toledo. Judge BURNET thus de-scribes Cincinnati, at about this period.


Prior to the treaty of Greenville, which established a permanent peace between the United States and the Indians but few improvements had been made of any description, and scarcely one of a permanent character. In Cincinnati, Fort Washington was the most remarkable object. That rude but highly interesting structure stood between Third and Fourth streets produced, east of Eastern row, now Broadway, which was then a two-pole alley, and was the eastern boundary of the town, as originally laid out. It was composed of a number of strongly built, hewed-log-cabins, a story and a half high, calculated for soldiers’ barracks. Some of them, more conveniently arranged and better finished, were intended for officers’ quarters. They were so placed as to form a hollow square of about an acre of ground with a strong block-house at each angle. It was built of large logs, cut from the ground on which it stood, which was a tract of fifteen acres, reserved by Congress in the law of 1792 for the accommodation of the garrison.


The artificers’ yard was and appendage to the fort and stood on the bank of the river immediately in front. It contained about two acres of ground, enclosed by small contiguous buildings, occupied as work-shops and quarters for laborers. Within the enclosure there was a large two-story frame-house, familiarly called the “yellow-house,” built for the accommodation of the quartermaster-general, which was the most commodious and best finished edifice in Cincinnati.


On the north side of Fourth street, immediately behind the fort, Colonel SARGENT, secretary of the territory, had a convenient frame-house and a spacious garden, cultivated with care and taste. On the east side of the fort, Dr. ALLISON, the surgeon-general of the army, had a plain frame dwelling in the centre of a large lot, cultivated as a garden and fruitery, which was called Peach Grove.


The Presbyterian church, an interesting edifice, stood on Main street in front of the spacious brick building now occupied by the first Presbyterian congregation. It was a substantial frame building about forty feet by thirty, enclosed with clapboards, but neither lathed, plastered nor ceiled. The floor was of boat plank, resting on wooden blocks. In that humble edifice the pioneers and their families assembled statedly for public worship; and during, the continuance of the war, they always attended with loaded rifles by their sides. That building was after-wards neatly finished, and some years subsequently [1814] was sold and removed to Vine street, where it now [1847] remains the property of Judge BURKE.


On the north side of Fourth street, opposite where St. Paul’s Church now stands, there stood a frame school-house, enclosed, but unfinished, in which the children of the village were instructed. On the north side of the public square there was a strong log-building erected and occupied as a jail. A room in the tavern of George AVERY, near the frog-pond, at the corner of Main and Fifth streets, had been rented for the accommodation of the courts; and as the penitentiary system had not been adopted, and Cincinnati was a seat of justice, it was ornamented with a pillory, stocks and whipping-post, and occasionally with a gallows. These were all the structures of a public character then in the place. Add to these the cabins and other temporary buildings for the shelter of the inhabitants, and it will complete the schedule of the improvements of Cincinnati at the time of the treaty of Greenville. The only vestige of them now remaining is the church of the pioneers. With that exception, and probably two or three frame buildings which have been repaired, improved and preserved, every edifice in the city has been erected since the ratification of that treaty. The stations of defense scattered through the Miami Valley were all temporary, and have long since gone to decay or been demolished.


It may assist the reader in forming something like a correct idea of the appear-

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ance of Cincinnati, and of what it actually was at that time, to know that at the intersection of Main and Fifth streets, now the centre of business and tasteful improvement, there was a pond of water full of alder bushes, from which the frogs serenaded the neighborhood during the summer and fall, and which rendered it necessary to construct a causeway of logs to pass it. That morass remained in its natural state with its alders and its frogs, several years after Mr. B. became a resident of the place, the population of which, including the garrison and followers of the army, was about six hundred. The fort was then commanded by William H. HARRISON, a captain in the army, but afterwards President of the United States. In 1797, General WILKINGSON, the commander-in-chief of the army, made it his head-quarters for a few months, but did not apparently interfere with the command of Captain HARRISON, which continued till his resignation in 1798.


During time period now spoken of, the settlements of the territory, including

Drawn by Henry Howe in Winter of 1846-1847.



[The engraving represents the first Presbyterian Church as it appeared in February, 1847. In the following spring it was taken down and the materials used for the construction of several dwellings in the western part of Cincinnati then called Texas. The greater proportion of the timber was found to be perfectly sound. The site was on Vine street just above where now is the Arcade. In 1791 a number of the inhabitants formed themselves into a company to escort the Rev. James KEMPER from beyond the Kentucky river to Cincinnati; and, after his arrival, a subscription was set on foot to build this church, which was erected in 1792. This subscription paper is still in existence, and bears date January 16, 1792. Among its signers were General WILKINSON, Captains FORD, PETERS and SHAYLOR, of the regular service, Dr. ALLISON, surgeon to ST. CLAIR and WAYNE, Winthrop SARGEANT, Captain Robert ELLIOT and others, principally citizens, to the number of 106.]


Cincinnati, contained but few individuals, and still fewer families, who had been accustomed to mingle in the circles of polished society. That fact put it in the power of the military to give character to the manners and customs of the people. Such a school, it must be admitted, was by no means calculated to make the most favorable impression on the morals and sobriety of any community, as was abundantly proved by the result.


Idleness, drinking and gambling prevailed in the army to a greater extent than it has done at any subsequent period. This may be attributed to the fact that they had been several years in the wilderness, cut off from all society but their own, with but few comforts or conveniences at hand, and no amusements but such as their own ingenuity could invent. Libraries were not to be found—men of literary minds or polished manners were rarely met with; and they had long been deprived of the advantage of modest, accomplished female society, which always produces a salutary influence on the feelings and moral habits of men.

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