Friday, October 24, 2014

Sale of Property Where the Dubois' Mills were Located 1823

As published earlier on this blog, the land Patent from the United States to Toussaint Dubois, Sr. was granted on August 28, 1788 for about 1020 acres. This land Patent covered a group of seven locations comprising what was known as the Shoals, which was a part of the Northwest Territory that France had ceded to the colony of Virginia in 1762. Upon Toussaint Dubois, Sr. death, his Will dated June 15, 1815, left all of his property, including the services of one Negro man named Gabriel and Anna his wife, to his children and his wife Jane Dubois.

The children are listed as Suzanne Dubois Jones, Toussaint Dubois Jr, Henry Dubois, Charles Dubois, Emmanuel Dubois, Thomas B. Dubois, James Dubois, and Jesse K. Dubois. The Will of Toussaint Dubois, Sr. was filed for probate in the Circuit Court of Knox County Indiana territory April 15, 1816.

On March 4, 1819 the Illinois General Assembly passed an act allowing Jane Dubois, William Jones and Toussaint Dubois executors of Toussaint Dubois, Deceased to sell certain lands of the estate now located in the new state of Illinois. If one of the three executors died, the survivors could continue to sell property not specifically mentioned in his Will. However this act was repealed in 1821 for some reason.   William Jones, one of the executors, had died since the Act of 1819, so the remaining executors agreed to sell parts of the land in the survey located at the office of John Badollet Esq. Register of the Land Office for the District of Vincennes. This land was  known as  ‘Sucrier de tabac’ or the ‘Shoals’ on the  Embarrass river formerly in the counties of Edwards and Crawford, but by 1821 governed by  Lawrence  County. (Remember the land didn’t move, just the county lines.) (see Book A Pages 34-35 Lawrence County Recorder’s Office )  

On August 25, 1823 for $2000 dollars in US money, the executors sold to Austin B. Chafey, Onatis D. Chafey and Caius M. Eaton, as tenants- in-common, 35 acres lying in the Shoals tract, except the 15 acres previously sold to Valentine Bradley.  The 20 acres sold were those “being in the low or flat ground on the north side of the river including both the north and south banks which included the mill seat and improvements such as the dam and mills then erected.”

Chafey, Chafey, and Eaton then conveyed the property back to Jane Dubois and Toussaint Dubois,Jr. the surviving widow and one of the sons,  heirs of Toussaint Dubois, Sr. as security for a mortgage payable in four equal notes of $500, first payment to be made two years hence, on August  26, 1825. 
The three men were required to pay the taxes but could keep the rents and profits from 'the mills.'


By August 7, 1823 the remaining Executors-- Jane, the surviving widow and Toussaint Jr, one of the sons-- were not getting along apparently. The widow needed money and Toussaint, Jr refused to carry out his duties as co-executor and join in the deed when Jane wanted to sell 3 ½ acres of land in the Shoals tract to Valentine I. Bradley.  She signed the deed over to Bradley for $150 without Toussaint Jr’s consent.  Fearing that his stepmother’s act would put Valentine Bradley “in something of an unpleasant situation which he had every inclination to avoid,” Toussaint Jr. ratified and confirmed the deed on January 28, 1824. The tract of land included a frame and log dwelling house, stable and other out buildings and described the property  as being on the road running from the ford across the Embarras River.   (For those researchers interested in this interesting deed see Book A page 38 at the Recorder’s Office.)

Monday night's Historical Society Program will feature Phil Lewis  presenting a program titled -- 
The Quilts of the Underground Railroad.  
Don't forget to attend Monday Night October 27, at 7:00 pm at the museum.  
Come early to get a good seat!  

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Happenings in October 1903 and 1907; Post Office Robbery

October 8, 1903 Lawrence County News
Born  to Mr. and Mrs. George H. Jacobs, Tuesday, October 6, a son. Dr. Bryant was the attending physician.  •  The new mail routes were opened Thursday: Joy Seed, carrier for Route No. 1, William Philbert No. 2, Nathan Baker No. 3, and C.E Harris No. 4.  •  O. B. Divilbiss died at his home in Russell Township Saturday at noon.  The cause of death was blood poisoning. Some four weeks ago, he was kicked by a mule, breaking his left leg in two places above the knee. The physicians in setting the limb did not discover but one break. For a time he seemed to be getting along nicely, but later developments showed blood poisoning and he passed away as above stated. He leaves a wife and mother.  •  Lawrenceville now has another restaurant. Ed Furrow took back a part of the fixtures and stock he sold to Dick Musgrave and opened a restaurant in the basement of the courthouse.  •  James Douglass committed suicide in Olney Friday afternoon by shooting himself. He left a letter to his mother that he was tired of life. The deceased is fairly well known in the city, having worked by the month for Thomas Whitaker this summer until the latter part of July.  •  Lawrenceville police and citizens landed four thieves in jail last Thursday evening. At about three o'clock that afternoon two strangers came into Gooch's Clothing store and one of them asked manager Bramble to see a pair of overalls. Bramble took him to the rear of the store and showed him the goods. He did not purchase anything however, and when he and Bramble came to the front of the store the other stranger had left. Nothing particularly was thought of this action, however, until the manager of the handle factory telephoned Mr. Bramble that four strangers had just left the factory and that they had tried to sell a pair of new trousers to some of his man at the very low price of $1.50. Marshall Daughtery was immediately notified, started pursuit and finally located the men, having with them two suits of clothes and a pair of trousers. They were locked up and given preliminary hearings.

October 15, 1903  Lawrence County News  
P. McCloskey, of Billett, died Monday. Old age was perhaps the cause of death. The remains were taken to Seymour Indiana for burial Thursday.  •  News was received here Sunday that Charles Barnes, a former Lawrence County boy, had committed suicide in Utah.  •  Mrs. Ed Crutchfield met with what might have been a very serious accident Tuesday afternoon. She was visiting her mother, Mrs. Gould, who lives near the schoolhouse, and when hitching up her horse to start home the animal became frightened at some schoolboys performing on a trapeze and ran away, circling around on the school grounds among 200 or more little children who were playing. Fortunately none of them were hurt, but Mrs. Crutchfield was thrown from the buggy and cut severely about the eye and hurt about the hip. The buggy was torn almost to pieces, before the horse could be stopped.  •  Mrs. A. M. Swinehart died in the family home on W. Sugar St., Monday morning at one o'clock. She was married first to a Mr. Lick; two children were born to them, one dying about 25 years ago.  She was then married to A.M. Swinehart. To this union three children were born; the husband survived her.  •  At 8:30 Wednesday evening at the bride's parents in the city, Miss Bertha E. Little and Mr. Medford Pifer of Palestine were united in the bonds of matrimony in the presence of the bride's parents and relatives. 

October 22, 1903 Lawrence County News
The Vincennes Commercial gives an account of the marriage of Louis H. Ruark and Miss Jenny Mills last Friday. Ruark is well known in the city, having formerly owned the Courthouse Barber Shop.  •    Jailer Gilbert saved another jail breaking Saturday. The two prisoners, who were given penitentiary sentences last week, tried to break out of jail. Sheriff Carr allowed them out of the cell a few hours Saturday for exercise. They managed to get hold of the heavy stick of wood and battered the window bar down where it had been broken some time ago, making a hole large enough for man to crawl through. They then broke the fastenings of the outside window screen. About this time jailer Gilbert entered the jail and, seeing the work, put them in a cell.   •  Sheriff Carr took Charles Reed and Arthur McLellan to the penitentiary at Chester Sunday. Joe Frye assisted him with the prisoners. They were both sent under the parole law.

October 29, 1903 Lawrence County News
 J. H. Ward is making arrangements to move into his new dwelling on E. Sugar St. next week. Mr. Warren has a beautiful new home. It is a two-story structure modern in every respect and contains all the modern conveniences.  •  The News last week, was misinformed as to the person in jail for bootlegging whiskey. The man's name is Alexander Crouch of Lukin Township. He was taken to Cairo for bootlegging whiskey and pled not guilty, claiming that he did not retail liquor himself, but sold it for other parties. He was fined $200 and in default was remanded to jail. He is laying it out in jail there.  •  Charles Perkins and Bessie Duke were married Sunday evening, Judge Madding officiating.  The happy couple will begin housekeeping near Pinkstaff.  •  Pearlie Jones, son of Steven Jones, died Sunday morning. Lung trouble was the cause of his death. He'd been sick for several months and for the past six weeks had been confined to his bed. He was a young man 24 years old and for several years had been in poor health.   •  Joe Zeilinger of Bond had the second stroke of paralysis about a week ago. The stroke this time affected the lower half of his body, he having no use of his lower limbs at all.

October 17,1907  
Born to Mr. and Mrs. A. E. Smith, South of town, Thursday evening, a baby girl.   •  Mr. and Mrs. Roy Fish are the happy parents of a baby girl born Tuesday of last week.  •  Perry Lewis, who is attending the Wabash business college in Terre Haute Indiana was at home over Sunday. •  Dr. J. H. Penner, of South of town, is seriously ill with lung trouble and  little hopes of his recovery are entertained.   •  We had the first killing frost of fall, Sunday night. There is a good deal of corn in the low lands it was caught by the frost.  •  The post office in St. Francisville was robbed Monday night. $250-$300 in stamps and $1.50 in pennies were taken. The safe was blown with nitroglycerin and completely ruined.


Monday night's Historical Society Program will feature Phil Lewis  presenting a program titled -- 
The Quilts of the Underground Railroad.  
Don't forget to attend Monday Night October 27, at 7:00 pm at the museum.  
Come early to get a good seat!  

October 27 Monday Night Program 7:00 pm

Monday night's Historical Society Program will feature Phil Lewis  presenting a program titled -- 
The Quilts of the Underground Railroad.  
Mr. Lewis and his wife, Jeri own Red Coach Antiques in Effingham.  
Holding degrees from both SIU and EIU, Mr Lewis is a past president of the Effingham Historical Society, and a member of the Northeast Appraisers Association. 
He is presently training at the Lincoln Museum in Springfield. 
Don't forget to attend Monday Night October 27, at 7:00 pm at the museum.  
Come early to get a good seat!  

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Early Yard Sale?

Recorded in Book A Page 11 Lawrence County Recorder's Office

March 11, 1822.   Edmund Rathbone of Lawrence County sold to Washbern Blackmen the following  property: one sorrel horse called Charlie, one Brown horse, one gray horse, one Bay horse and one yearling colt, three yoke of oxen, five cows, four yearling calves, Sixteen sheep, 40 head of hogs, two plows, one iron harrow, one wagon and gears, also four beehives, two log chains, two feather beds and bedding, one Loom, one 12 gallon kettle and 18 gallon pot and one grindstone for the sum of $300 on March 11, 1822.   This bill of sale was witnessed by Tillman Melton and William Hudson.     Some yard sale uh?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

News of October 1898

October 12, 1898 Lawrence County News
The missionary entertainment at the First M. E. Church last Saturday evening was attended by a large audience. The offering amounted to nearly 3 dollars.  •  Elder and Mrs. Corter, Mr. and Mrs. J.K. Dickirson, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Kirkwood, Mrs. Bertha Adams, Misses. Vie Warner and Maggie Jones were among those who will leave today for Chattanooga, Tennessee, to attend the general conference of the Christian church.  •  Erve Gosnell’s little son, George, who is attending school here, accidentally had the large bone of his right arm broken Tuesday. During the morning recess he, with other playmates, was playing Buffalo Bill show and one of the boys jerked George over backwards and he fell on his arm.  •    The grand jury adjourned sine die  yesterday morning, having been in session 6 days, and returned 23 indictments; stealing 1; forgery 1; robbery 1; carrying concealed weapons 2; assault to  kill 1; selling intoxicating liquors 4; fortifications 1 (one would think this might require two to be indicted...*) ) ; burglary 1; public nuisance 4; bribery 2; disturbing public meetings 2.  •  (Martin) Luther Cooper near Bridgeport and Miss (Hannah) Luella Kurkey were united in marriage in the home of the bride's mother in Sumner.

October 20, 1898 Lawrence County News
F. W. Tyler went to St. Louis Friday to see and hear Pres. McKinley.  •  The Lawrenceville Butter and Cheese factory is completed. All the machinery is in and ready to begin making butter and cheese.  •  Clyde Price and Charles Roberts, members of the 9th Illinois Regimental band, are home on furlough. Charles has a 30 day furlough and Clyde a 15 day one. They are both looking well. They said the Regiment is in pretty good shape but there have been 14 deaths since they went to Jacksonville. Clyde is a Sgt. of the band.  •  Judge Youngblood adjourned Circuit Court last Thursday morning. On Wednesday evening exercises were held in memory of the late William Robinson.  A number of addresses were made by attorneys, telling of his good qualities as a man and a lawyer.

October 27, 1898 Lawrence County News

The Rev. J. H. Taylor, pastor of the Second M. E. Church, has opened a barbershop over R. L. Fitch’s store.   •  Mrs. Martha Buchanan, widow of the late W.T. Buchanan of Denison died Sunday with paralysis. She was 63 years and a few months old.  •   James F. Snyder of Bond, a member of Company L, 159 Indiana Volunteers, died Thursday with typhoid fever and was buried Saturday in the Derr cemetery. Mr. Snyder was at home on a furlough when he died.  •  The Board of Supervisors met Tuesday, October 18 and fixed the salary of County officers as follows: County judge $600; County Clerk $1600; Sheriff $1500; treasurer $1000.  •  The East St. Louis B &  L Association organized a branch company here last Wednesday with H. W. Curry, president; Lew Buchanan, vice president; A. D. Sprinkle secretary; J. W. McCleave, Treas., and T. B. Huffman attorney.  •  J. N. Rosborough and sons, Charles H. and Watts, have formed a partnership for the purpose of writing insurance and selling real estate. J.N Rosborough, the senior member of the firm, has been in the insurance business for 16 years and is well and favorably known in Lawrence and adjoining counties.

* just wanted to see if anyone was really reading these articles.....

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Oil King 1982


This photo and article was found in the Lawrence County News Oct 7, 1982. (The article makes it sound like these men are still working in the oil field....)  


"Lloyd Polk, 86 was named Bridgeport’s 1982 Oil Field Day King during the city’s celebration.  Polk was named king because he is the oldest working oil field employee in the Bridgeport area.  Polk’s court consisted of other oil field workers 80 years of age or older.  Front row from left: Polk; Orrie Jeffords, 83; Voil Lucas, 90; and Rex Laughlin Sr, 91. Back row from left: Henry Crewell, 83; Charles Cronin, 85; Charlie Boldrey, 81; George Richardson, 83; and Ellis Palmer, 80.  Although Palmer is not the oldest working oil field employee, he has 45 years of service in the field." 

Friday, October 17, 2014

Cornelius Taylor - Conclusion

For the past week this blog has featured a serialized story about Cornelius Taylor.  Published first in the Robinson Daily News on Oct 1, 2008 the story is written about events that would lead one to believe they transpired in Crawford County.  But remember that land  north of the mouth of the Embarrass River including what would become Petty, Bond, Russell, and the northern parts of Lawrence and Allison townships was included in the boundaries of  Crawford County between 1816 and 1821. Then in 1821 this same land and the rest of the county which was then a part of Edwards County, was united to become the county of Lawrence.

According to early Lawrence County history (page 325 of the 175th anniversary of Lawrence County Il Commemorative Edition), as early as 1816 Cornelius Taylor kept a ferry across the Embarras just above the bridge at Lawrenceville. Technically he would have been ‘living’ in Crawford County, on the north side of the Embarras River.

He was also one of the first men to be granted a liquor license in 1821 in Lawrence County after the county was formed. But had he already been running a tavern on the north side of the Embarras under the jurisdiction of Crawford County?

One of the first deeds recorded in Lawrence county was Aug 14, 1821 in which Charles Wood and his wife Sarah sold some property to a Cornelius Taylor.  

The contract for the first jail in Lawrence County was let to Cornelius Taylor and Isaac Fail.  It was 17 ft square; 2 stories high; made of hewn logs with double walls -- the space between  being filled with rocks.  It cost $625.00 and was finished in March 1822. (This is the jail where Betsey Reed was held in 1845.)  

However early in in 1822 Taylor had left Lawrenceville and was in Gallatin Co,Il.  On March 16, 1822, he executed a power of attorney authorizing his friend Isaac Fail to sell his land in Illinois.   It was the first Power of Attorney to be recorded in this county.  The document was witnessed before Thomas C Browne, an Illinois Supreme Court judge  in Gallatin Co.

On March 30, 1822, a deed was recorded  from Cornelius Taylor by his POA, Isaac Fail selling part of the Dubois property back to Charles and Sarah Wood for $800.  So far these documents support the story written for the Robinson Paper and were probably used in the research for the article.  

The article indicates that Taylor was sued for unpaid debts in Crawford County in 1820, which would have had jurisdiction over Taylor if he were residing in what later became northern Lawrence County.   After Lawrence County was formed in 1821, the judgments were directed here.

By Nov 22, 1822 the Sheriff of Lawrence Co, Henry Dubois, was directed by the Circuit Court of Crawford County in Palestine to execute on property belonging to the estate of Cornelius Taylor, late of Lawrence County.  $154.23 ¼  was owed to Wilson Lagow by a judgment signed on Sept 3, 1820 with interest on a debt at the rate of 6% per annum, plus $21.15 ½  as cost of suit.

Also a March 11, 1819 judgment for $222.78 was held against Taylor’s estate by James B. McCall as well as $13.59 as costs.  There was another outstanding judgment against the Taylor estate held by John D. Hay for $215.32; $13.55 ½ was to be added for court costs. The sheriff was to deliver the money to satisfy all these judgments within 40 days.

The Lawrence county sheriff, Henry Dubois, seized 160 acres in Sec 29,160 acres in Sec 21, and 80 acres in Sec 20--all in T4 R11 (near the present Ambraw Sportsman Club, north of Lawrenceville ) on May 11, 1822 at Taylor’s dwelling house. James B. McCall, being the highest bidder, became the purchaser for $300.

The judgments executed on the property belonging to the “estate of Cornelius Taylor, late of Lawrence county,” almost sound as if Cornelius Taylor had died.  Did he fake his death to the court when in reality he just “skipped town?” Or is this terminology just to be interpreted as “real estate belonging to Cornelius Taylor who used to live in Lawrence County?”

There were two Cornelius Taylors enumerated on the Crawford County census in 1818, along with other residents we now consider as living on property that would later become part of  Lawrence County.  In other words, the people didn’t move from Crawford to Lawrence-- the county boundaries just moved.     See http://genealogytrails.com/ill/crawford/1818census.  So have the researchers intertwined the two Cornelius Taylor’s lives into one great story? Would someone as notorious and with the reputation of Cornelius Taylor in this story be chosen to build the first jail in Lawrence County? It seems more likely that this Cornelius Taylor might have been  a guest of the sheriff here. So was it the other Cornelius Taylor?

And did all of these events actually happen in what was to become Lawrence County? A Cornelius Taylor was running the ferry across the Embarras River at the Shoals where Dubois had his mill and what would later become Lawrenceville as early as 1816. He also ran a tavern. Did the murder of McCall by the Indians (even though the case was tried in Palestine, which would have had jurisdiction over ‘northern Lawrence’) really occur in ‘our neck of the woods?”  A family of McCall’s settled some distance north of Lawrenceville, and the Tri-County History Of Edwards, Lawrence, and Wabash Counties published in 1883 describes McCall’s  death on page 74.  “A party of Delaware Indians from a camp on Brushy Fork, came to McCall’s cabin and demanded whisky.  He refused compliance with their demand, and they murdered him.  Kill Buck, a chief, Captain Thomas and Big Panther were suffered to go unpunished.”  This sounds like the same story. 

A Cornelius Taylor had his dwelling house (near the present Ambraw Sportsman Club, north of Lawrenceville) on May 11, 1822, but no doubt had settled there earlier.  We can link Cornelius Taylor to Lawrence County from 1816, until he leaves in March 1822.We think he is ours!  So Crawford County, we have thrown down the challenge….if you want to claim him, you need to prove it!   


But more importantly, was the Lawrence County Cornelius Taylor the same troublesome Cornelius Taylor that kept showing up in the Crawford County Court Records? And if he was, do we really WANT to claim him? Or was he a totally different person who just had the misfortune to have the same name?