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Rock Island Argus. (Rock Island, Ill.) 1893-1920, October 01, 1895, Image 3

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn92053934/1895-10-01/ed-1/seq-3/

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Corner Block of the Court
House in Place.
The Procession and It. Com
position. Th-i Kxerc'scsin Court House
Oraiions of the Day and Sta
tistical Address.
Music and Other Features of
the Occasion.
In the presence of an assemblage
as distinguished in all that com
posed it as has ever gathered on a
notable occasion in Kock Island
county's history, the solemn, sig
nificant historical aut of the layitig
of the corner stone of the new court
house was performed this afternoon.
Nature put on her moss pleasing
aspect ami contributed her kindliest
ofiiccs to those who had in charge
the day's demonstration by provid
ing: one of autumn's balmy days in
the county's honor. With weather
ideal, with enthusiasm and interest
that was aroused a year ago. when
the fate of the proposition to author
ize the construction of the new tem
ple was still undetermined, with
every incentive actuating: those who
were honored with identification
with the noble deed of consecration,
and it may be said initiation, there
could be no possible, reason why the
event should not illuminate the
record of the affairs of the common
wealth. .
Aside from the day and the deed,
each made better by the other, the
occasion served to awaken and fresh
en memories of the past, to brirg
together those who had seen the
- " WP7 - af
. .--JsvSZ
f '
E. 1). SWKfcNUY.
county in times when even the court
house now to be abandoned was
hardly considered possible patri
archs whose very lives are history
ami whose existence has con
tributed to the transition of
what is now Hock Island
county from tho crude, untamed
state of three-quarters of a century
ago to its present condition of civil
ization ami enlightenment. And
what a happy thought it is to know
that such of these grand, sturdy old
pioneers have been permitted to sur
vive to witness this most auspicious
clay! The early settlers who joined
in "the festivities, and they ame
from all sections of the county in re
sponse to the invitation to conduct
the ceremonies to be present, re
joiced iu the act. no less than in the
task assigned to them. Tender anil
previous, too, were tho reminis
cences recalled and related as
thnin'hts went back a half hundred
years or more, and joyous were the
thoughts that arose in their bosoms
over the evidence of promise that
was thn typified.
The Atteurianre.
While there was a good attendance
from all pnrts of the connty. tho ex
cursion that came in from Andalusia
was the largest and most creditable
It was worked up bv Supervisor J.
G. Briiton, Ira Ruffum and Charles
Hayes, of Andalusia, and Supervisor
rugingion, oi uuuaiu
lVairte. The Lone Star was char
tered and with the Buffalo brass and
Andalusia martial bands arrived at
1 1 o'clock. There were 29o people
in an. nun wun supervisors Brilton
ami ivugingioaai tuc Head a proces
sion was for li, til and marched up
Liuit-cuiu buvti kj occonu avenue.
where it dispersed for dinner. Most
of the people were from Andalusia.
although Supervisor K.dinj:ton and
family, of Buffalo Prairie, and Wil
chcr Elliott and- family, of Edging;
ton, were included. There were two
old veterans in the delegation. Zach
arias Walton, who carried an Ameri
can flag: taken at Harper's Ferrv and
with a history, and Milton HuSum
who witnessed the erection of the
old court house.
Among; others who came to the
city were Undo" Lewis Wilson, of
Kuril, who served on the first board
of supervisors of Kock Island concty
in lsoi, and is todav the only sir
riving member of that distinguished
body. Others prominent among;
those identitied with the history of
tne county were Benjamin uouic,
John S. Kistlcr, V. II. Kistlcr and
D. T. Kistler, of Buffalo Prairie;
Or. J. A. Keiter. of Joslin; J. M.
Johnston and T. A. Johnston, of Rey
nolds; James Taylor, of Taylor
RtJge; John Pence, of Buffalo Prairie;
James Venable and Jacob II. Carpen
ter, of EJgingtoa, and John John
son, of Canoe Creek..
The Opening Feature and Marching
The procession, which was the in
augural feature of the ceremonies,
formed on Third avenue and Fif
teenth street at 1 o'clock and at 1:30
the command "forward march" was
given by Chief. Marshal K. If. Bow
man, the colunio as it advanced be
ing composed as follows:
Marshals Cowmen si.d Clcndenic ai.d Aid.
Koliie Pjlice and Patrol.
Uoline Llht Guiri ui).
Nival Bt'?crvcs. Mo ine.
Company K. Moline
Fire Eupartment. Mollnc
Muilce Yiyor a.d City O.H:eri in Carriages.
Moliie Attorneys in Carriages.
Cld H'tiltTA Moline, in Carriages
Folk Island Mayer au 1 Council iu Carriage?.
Cjcn'y 0!i;;cr in Carriages,
lioarj of Sn;rvisori In Cu rias s.
Old Settlers' ocla-in OH;ers and Citz:ns In
Car: !;v.
Rock I-l&n 1 Attorneys in Carnages.
Bicuer'4 Binl.
Kock I.-land P.ili e 1,'cr.artment.
Stone Ct t'irj,' t'nion, t'ock laiaD.l.
liock J-l m 1 M li Carr:cr.
Angn-tur.a Collcijis Faculty and S:aiEentJ.
Shi!ita Cninminl, U. V. TJ.
A nonius's. ( I lz :r.s atd Two Par.ds.
The I. Ine or March.
The line of march was as previons
V announced: East on Third avenue
to Twentieth street, thence north to
Second, west to Twelfth t-treet, south
to Third avenue, east to Fifteenth
trect. north to the platform in the
courthouse grounds. All along the
route of the profession the business
houses were gaily decorated and a
great number of people turned out
to view the spectacle.
Till: KXKRCl-KS.
The I'rosrani,
SpercliM and Contents of
the Itojc.
In the grounds and on the founda
tion for the tie building: had been
erected a temporary stand under
cover and with seating capacity for
those conducting: the ceremonies,
the speakers and the guests of honor.
The stand had been prettily deco
rated with flags and bunting, while
adding to the appropriate appearance
were bronze busts of Lincoln and
Douirlus, and lithographs or paint-
ngs of Washington, Lincoln, Grant,
Sheridan and Black Hawk.
The corner stone was elevated
over the portion of the foundation
on which it was to rest by means of
dcrricK. iiic stone as described
erctoforo was in dimensions five
feet long by two feet wide and one
foot, eight inches deep. The onlv
nscription was. '18U5," plainly
chiseled ou the face.
Tho exercises were opened at 2:30,
Fred Oaborn presiding. J. G. BIythe,
president of the Hock Island County
Pioneers' society, bcin master of
ceremonies. The program opened
with music by Blcucr's band and
prayer was offered bv Kev. A. Harper,
of Pot t Bvron, followed by the rendi
tion of "The Star Spangled Banner"
by the Svea Male choir.
C 1). Sweeney Honored With the Deliv
ery or the Chief Addrets.
The oration of the day was then
delivered by E. 1). Sweeney. "Wc
celebrate todav," said Mr. Sweeney,
tho laying of tho corner-stone for
the new court house, and the occa
sion is an event which awakens in us
emotions of the deepest interest.
While it is true that this vast assem
blage of citizens are of divers nation
alities, of varied political faith, and
are of many religious beliefs, we all
stand before this mute block of
granite as before the throne of the
Eternal, on equal footing no special
privilega of nobility or preference
places one before the other. The
significance of this great gathering is
a tribute of respect to the grand
temple of justice planned to rise
from this corner-stone and an ac
knowledgment of homage to the
fair Goddi'ss of Justice, who with
sightless eyes and extended hand
under the law holds the balances in
which causes between man nnd man
are weighed without partiality or
favor, and determined. The law-
abiding people of this great county.
as by ono common impulse from the
various pursuits of life, tho farmers
from their fields, the merchants from
their counters, the mechanics from
their shops, the bankers from their
desks and the humblest toilers from
their work, have come to witness the
simple act of the laying of this stone.
It must be that in this there is much
that ought to challenge our thought
ful consideration and engage onr
earnest contemplation for the hour
which we are permitted to spend to
gether on this event. It is the transi
tion moment from the old to the new ;
it is passing a great mile stone in the
career of ' our county. More than
CItv years of history is about to close
its record today and a new book pre
sents itself in which we are to begin
to record events, yet in the bosom of
the future, t J be born each day and
each month in the coming years.
The thought which occupies'every
one here assembled must be in refer
ence to the old court house, its asso
ciations of lawyers and jadges, of
lawsuits, of law and its administra
tion and of officers and this thought
is the theme to which I address my
self for the few minutes allotted io
Mr. Sweeney thereupon f poke at
same length of lawyers in general
and their profession, and of law and
its many definitions. And then en
tered into a discussion of the early
beginnings of Kock Island county.
He said the county of Kock Island
was organized on the 8th day of July,
1833, it having been formerly a part
of Jo Davies county, and the first
term of the circuit court was held at
the house of John Barrell, beginning
on the 28th day of April. 1S3L This
house stood on the banks of the Syl
van waters, jnst west of the Cable
residence, and was chosen by the
county commissioners as the tempo
rary place of holdiug the court and
the" village was called Farnamsburg.
In this house was the court until
abandoned at the September term,
1837, in all six terms of court. At
each of these terms there was a grand
jury selected and chosen, and in
looking over the list which compose
these grand juries, he spoke of Ben
jamin Uoble, who laid the corner
stone today, as a grand juror at
three of those terms; of Michael Hart
zell as serving two term 3, and of
John Tindall and Charles Tittering
ton as also serving, ail these four be
ing present, and of William Bell,
now at Toledo, O., as being a grand
juror at the April term, 1837. The
rest who bore the illustrious names
which composed these grand juries
have gone to join the silent majority.
Location of the Court Home.
Turning to the subject of the court
honse, Mr. Sweeney said: "In the
month of June in the year 133Z, in
pursuance of an act of the legisla
ture, three commissioners, William
Bennett, of Jo Davies county, Peter
Butler, of Warren county, and John.
G. Sandbom, of Knox county, located
on the northwest quarter of section
35, township IS, 2 west, the perma
nent scat of justice of Kock Island
county, and in the year 1837 the new
court "house and which is now the old
court house, which we are about to
abandon, was erected on the spot so
selected and on the same spot we
lay today the corner-stone for the
new court house. The first term of
court held in the house so erected
was begrun on the 28th day of April,
1834. The officers that composed
thae honorable court were: Daniel
Stone, judge: Joseph Conway, clerk;
Edward South ivici, state's attorney;
and Charles Kanis, sheriff. The
grand jury selected and chosen at
that term was Samnel Smith, fore
man. Miles Drury, Thomas Klumph,
Zacheus Mayhue, Isaac B. Essex.
Henry Powers, Zachariah Cook,
Samuel Bjwles, David Jameson,
David Lamberson, Josiah Carter.
Mentcvel Gillett, William Brooks,
Daniel Edgington, Joseph Dunlap,
Jonah II. Case, A. Philleo, H. II.
Beardsley, William Buck. A. P.
Clapp, William Bell, Jacob Coleman
and Jonathan ButTum. Of this roll
of names called on that spring day
57 years ago, there is not one pres
ent to answer the call. These men
were then young and vigorous, the
best of the communities from which
they had come to lay the founda
tions of society in a new country,
broad and deep npon virtuous lives
with pnrposes fixed and determined
that this should be a lawabiding
community; how well they succeeded
the history of these 57 years is their
record, and this great and prosper
ous county, the goodly heritage
which they" hav,e bequeathed to the
generation of today. As the Ply
month Rock received the fathers
from the Mayflower, so the shorea of
the Mississippi received these early
comers. They
Oro.ted tne prairies a cfo'd,
9 lie pCfrlnw croesed the fca.
This was alluded to as the begin
ning of oar long court dockets, and
in the time that has elapsed the pop
ulation of the county has grown from
350 to 45.00Q, and whereas there was
but one struggling village at that
time on the site of Rock Island and
here and there a settler throughout
the county, now there are six in
corporated towns and villages full of,
activity and business and two large
commercial cities teeming with in
dustry, thrift, and enterprise, grow
ing in importance and multiplying
in wealth. Then the taxable prop
erty of the county was a few hun
dred dollars; now it is over eight
million. He traced the history of
the courts, their expansion aml'de
velopmcnl'to the present time.
Kotalile Criminal Proceedings.
He said: "The most remarkable
criminal proceedings that ever oc
enrrud within the walls of the old
court house, and which is one of the
familiar reminiscences of the early
settlers, was the trial of the murder
ers of Col. tJeorgre Davenport. This
trial was not remarkable so much on
account of the principles of law in
volved in the case as it was the
assertion of the law in a peaceable,
quiet and orderly manner, against
the three desperate men who cruelly
took the life of their victim, whom
they were attempting to rob. While
the condemnation of these men was
a foregone conclusion from the first,
their arraignment, trial and sen
tence, and final execution on the 21th
day of October, 1845, were all
thrilling scenes, but furnish indis
putable arguments In favor of the
wisdom of allowing tlis law to take its
course. In the sentence of the court
the body of John Long, one of the
defendants in the Davenport case,
was given to Dr. Patrick Gregg, then
the eminent physician of the county,
who articulated the skeleton, which
has been used twice in the old court
house by lawyers in suits involving
questions of s'urgery, and is now do
ing service in the High school in the
study of anatomy. While it is true
fS 1A
that the delays of the law arc some
times wearisome and the guilty some
times escape by reason of such delays,
yet the maturity of judgment comes
forth from the slow processes of the
law to establish the right, which by
haste wonld be perverted and de
structive of tho very object sought to
be reached. At the June term of the
circuit court 1805 David Stoddard
was tried and convicted of the mur
der of bis wife nd hanged on July
13 in the same year. At the March
term, 1857, Samuel Ingraham was
tried and convicted for the murder of
his wife and hanged oa May 5, 1857.
William Heilw'agon. at the" January
term. 1882, was tried and convicted
for the murder of his daughter-in-law,
and hanged March 4, 1S82. The
people of this county, from their
practices, show them to be believers
in capital punishment."
The subjects of the long civil
dockets, the ownership of property,
of litigation'in general, and of law
yers' work were taken up in turn and
fully discussed. Spaakipg of promi
nent lawyers, tho names of Joseph
Knox, Judge Ira O. Wilkinson, E. H.
Bean, John B-t Hawley, Alfred Web
ster, J. J. Beardsley, Robert W.
Smith and Patrick O'Mara were
given as having been stamped upon
the events of the times in which
they lived. To each of these a fitting
tribute was paid.
The Judges and Other Officer.
The composition of a court was
taken up. beginning with the judge.
In the time reviewed the speaker
said there had been nineteen judges.
Richard M. Young, who came from
Galena, was the first to preside in
this county. Daniel Stone, also of
Galena, succeeded him. Sidney
Brecse, Benjamin B.s Sheldon and
Thomas Ford, all of whom after
ward gained prominence in the judi
ciary and in the history of Illinois,
were referred to as having held court
here in early times. Judge J. W.
Drury likewise received extended
mention. Judge Arthur A. Smith,
who first held court here in T and
who resigned in the fall of 1S94, and
the present judges. Judge George W.
Pleasants, Judge John S. Glenn and
Judge Hiram Bigelow, were referred
to in complimentary language.
Other Connty Officer.
The orator took jip in review the
various other connty ofiiccs and their
incumbents from time to time. .Of
the clerks of the circuit court, Jo
seph Conway was the first. He held
the office until 1849, when he was
succeeded by Frazer Wilson. Quin
cy McNeil succeeded the major; then
came Dr. E. H. Bowman. Samuel P.
Hodges. George Gould. Levi 1. Har
sonE. H. Bowman, Jr., and George
W. Gamble. Twenty-one different
men have hell the oflice of sheriff,
those who are still living being:
David Hawes, who served in 1861;
Charles A. McClaughlin in 18G3,
William Payne in 1S71, J. L. Perkins
in 1377. succeeded by J. F. Ankrum,
John M- Keticker. T. S. Silvis, C. D.
Gordon and F. C. Hemenway. Fif
teen different lawyers have served as
prosecuting attorneys, Thomas Ford
being the first. But four of the list
now survive: E. E. Parmcntcr. W.
J. Entriken. M. M. Sturgeon and C.
J. Searlc, the present official. Of
the ceunty clerks, Joseph Conet, still
here, is the oldest, while others hold
ing tho oflico were: Maj. J. M.
Beardsley, J. V. Cook. R. A. Donald
son and H. Kohlcr. Of the ex-county
judges, there are but two living.
Capt. T. J. Robinson, who acted
with John W. Spencer as judge in
1813, and J. M. Gould, who was
county judge in 1854-57. Tho pres
ent incumbent. Judge Lucian
Adams, was fittingly ccmplimented.
There have been 17 different men
who have held the office of county
treasurer. Dr. Patrick Gregg held
the office during the construction of
the old court house, and paid all the
bills for the same.
To Congress.
"Three members of congress have
been sent from our county," said Mr.
Sweeney. Hon. John B. Hawley.
Hon. William H. Gest and Hon. Ben
T. Cable. We are indebted to these
gentlemen for great services in se
curing appropriations for the build
ing of the national armory on the isl
and, for the great bridge across the
Mississippi, the viaduct and the new
government building, now being
erected, and the Hennepin canal."
Topics In UsneraL
Mr. Sweeney spoke of the patriotic
natures of the early settlers who
laid the broad foundations of our in
stitutions, and of love of country
being the test of good citizenship of
t'ue men the county of Rock Island
sent to the front during the war, and
paid a glowing tribute to the pio
neers of Illinois in general. The
subject of modern inventions and
the manner in which the county has
kept pace and profited by the same,
and the progress made in education,
in science and in morality was dwelt
In conclusion Mr. Sweeney said
that all forces meet today in a united
effort for the common weal. "At
the April term, 1893, of the board of
supervisors, F. M. Sinnet, Esq.. was
elected chairman, and in his address
to the board, returning thanks for
his election, among other things he
said that the necessity existed for
the erection of a new conrt house,
and he believed that the timos were
propitious for 'its erection. During
this session of the board. Joseph
Fitzpatrick, then supervisor from
Black Hawk, came to the office
of Sweeney c Walker and talked to
the same effect, and C. L. Walker
prepared resolutions setting forth
that the necessity existed for a new
court bouse and that the times were
propitious for the building of the
same. These resolutions were de
livere I to Mr. Fitzpatrick, who in
troduced them in the. board, then
in session and, they were adopted.
Iu the lueamima Charles J. Searle,
our youug and vigorous state's attor
ney, with his accustomed zeal and
enthusiasm, took hold of the work
and put the report of the committee
in shape, which was presented at the
next session of tho board and adopt
ed, and the cause of the new court
house was squarely before the peo
ple. The press, which has always
been a great factor in the pushing
forward of the welfare of the county
in all channels, took hold and advo
cated the enterprise, the people with
unanimity seconded the move and
the board of supervisors pushed on
nutil the building of the new court
house became a fixed fact. C. J.
Larkin was given the contract, with
S. J. Collins as superintendent, who,
with Rock Island mechanics to do the
work, present to us today a founda
tion, apparently strong and massive
enough to sustain the national capi.
tol, from which will riso a building
worthy of our county and the times
in winch we live. The Parthenon of
Athens, built by Phidias, has never
in the world's history been paralleled
tor refinement of design and perfec
tion of execution. In this Pericles
poured forth his oloquence and So
crates taught philosophy and becamo
the wonder of all ages and the glory
of his own. The golden days of Ro
man splendor were when her emper
ors lavished their wealth upon tho
forums from which Cicero delivered
his orations and reached the highest
excellence in the use of the Latin
tongue and became the model orator
of all ages. The court houses of our
country are the forums of the people
and for the people, and it is filling
that they should be built and adorned
as become the wealth of those who
build and the uses to which they are
dedicated. Standing in the presence
of a glorious past inspired by the en
thusiasm of the hour, we "look out
upon the future spanned by the bow
of promise in which generations un
born will rise up to blees the men
wbo built the new court house."
The Moline Light Guard band fur
nished instrumental music.
State's Attorney C. J. Searle's Interesting
State's Attorney C. J. Searle
delivered the statistical address. He
spoke of feeling highly flattered at
the privilege accorded him of taking
part in the important ceremony of
laying the corner-stone for the new
temple of justice, "and while," said
he, "tho nature of a statistical paper
for permanent preservation, requires
me to indulge in a greater use of sta
tistics than is conducive to present
and temporary interests, I have
striven iu the very limited time I
have had to bestow upon tho task,
to cull out of the records and tradi
tions of the county such statistical
information as in my opinion would
most interest thoso present as well
as future inhabitants of the county
to whose curious gaze the contents
of this corner-stone will be revealed,
perhaps a century from now.
"The record of the world's his
tory discUscs the rise and fall of
many great and prosperous nations,
but history never recorded such
great, rapid and, we hope, enduring
progress of a people as has been wit
nessed in the United States since its
formation. Pre-eminently a peace
ful nation, our area has grown from
827,844 square miles in 1789 to 3,-
003,884 square miles in 1S95, and
that, too, mostly by peaceful con
quest. Our population has grown
from 3,929.214 in 1790 to 62.G22.250
in 1890. From a few scattered set
tlements skirting along the Atlantic
seaboard, under the benign influ
ences of the free institutions handed
down to us by our illustrious fore
fathers, we have developed into a
mighty nation; a nation not beyond
tho possibility of improvement, but
in the main filled with a happy, pros
perous people; a nation of inestima
ble wealth; a highly civilized na
tion, filled with churches, schools
and libraries; a nation making un
precedented strides in industry, art,
science and education; a nation
that is. indeed, the lani of the
free and the homo of the brave;' a
nation of the utmost possibilities of
resources and development, and des
tined, I hope, to be during all time
the greatest, grandest nation the
world ever saw." Continuing he
Oar Own Ueloved State.
"Illinois, our beloved state, taking
its name from the Indian word
'Illini,' signifying 'superior men,'
has in the short space of 77 years,
from its admission in 1818, grown to
be a mighty empire of 3.826.351 peo
ple. The virgin soil of her wonder
ful prairies, the wealth of her prim
eval forests and the hidden treasures
of her mines have made her the gem
of that great galaxy of states known
as the -great northwest,' which has
no equal in fertility, resources and
possibilities of development on the
face of tho earth. Great as our
national and state development has
been. Rock Island county has kept
pace with our common country; and
that, too, notwithstanding the fact
that we came so comparitively late
in the order of settlement. Mar
quette and Joliet were likely the
lirst white persons to set eyes on the
men wuu, oeautiiui ana romantic
scenery of Rock Island county, at
mat time tne Home oi the Indian
and buffalo, in the year 1673. The
first white settler was Col. George
Davenport, who located with bis
family on the beautiful island in the
Mississippi river between here and
Davenport in 1616, a time within tne
memory of quite a number of the
grand old patriarchs within tho
sound of my voice. Little did the
unbroken wilderness surrounding
that solitary habitation, distant hun
dreds of miles from any other,
forebode the marvelous de
velopment that has taken placa
here &ince its erection. Tho
first house erected on the main shoro
of our county was by Col. Gcorgo
Davenpcrt and Russell Farnham, in
tho eastern part of our present city.
The iirst white child born in this
vicinity, was George Davenport, in
1817. "The first lands that were en
tered were recorded October 19, 1829,
by Col. Gcorgo Davenport and Rus
sell Farnham. the government land
offices then being at Galena. The
first marriago was that of James L.
Burtis to Miss Angelino Beardsley in
1883. In 1805 for the first time'the
flag of the union proudly waved
over Rock Island county's present do
main; albeit its field of blue then
only contained a constellation of 17
stars instead of 45, as now. Tho
early settlement was slow, for while
nature was kind and presented few
obstacles to settlement, the savage
and treacherous Indian did. It re
quired the Black Hawk war of 18.52,
that had for battle grounds tho beau
tiful prairies and unbroken forests of
Rock Island county to drive the ablo
and revenged Black Hawk anil his
tribe beyond the Mississippi to innko
way for the advancing tide of settle,
ment and civilization. It was not
until 18 43 that the inhabitants had
increased sufficiently to justify tho
legislative act of that year providing
for the organization of the county,
and even then the total vote of the
county was only 65. The first scat
of justice was established in tho
same year at John Barren's house, in
what was then called Farnham'sburg,
now a part of the city of Rock Island.
In 1S35 tho seat of justice was
changed by commissioners appointed
by act of the legislature to its pres
ent sito, in what was then called
the town of Stephenson.1'
Mr. Searle went into details as to
the lirst judge, sheriff, state's attor
ney and other lawyers, etc., spoke of
the Fifth judicial circuit comprising
tho counties of Rock Island, Cook,
La Salle, Putnam, ' Peoria, Fulton,
Schuyler, Adams, Hancock, McDon
oug'u, Knos, Warren, Jo Davies, Mer
cer and Henry as the first; the first
hotel, or tavern as called, being
opened in 1833 belonging to Jonah 11.
Case; privato schools being estab
lished at an early dalo and free
C. J. SKA HI. K.
schools in 185G; the first church,
Methodist Episcopal, in 1841; the
first library opened in 1855; tho first
newspaper, tho Banner and Stephen
son Gazette, slartcd in 1839.
Itock Island and Other Towns.
The city of Rock Island, including
the towns of Stephenson and Farn
hamsburg and outlying additions,
ho said, was organized in 1841. What
was known as Rock Island Mills, was
in 1843 organized into tho beautiful
city of Moline, "tho City of Mills."
Camden, afterwards Camden Mills
and now Milan, was laid out in 1843,
Port Byron in 1836. Andalusia in
1859. F:dgingrton in 1843, and Rey
nolds in 1876. He took up tho as
sessed valuation of the county, the
population and the determination iu
1X35 to build a court house. Tho
contract was let for $10,500, tho peo
ple furnishing the brick themselves
at a cost of $l,G0O, making a total
cost of $12,100 at the time of the ac
ceptance of the completed building
in 1838. "Humblo as it now seems,"
said tho speaker, "it was then a
grand structure, one of tho finest
buildings in the state, and was the
pride of the city and county for
years. Its erection had entailed an
expenditure of perhaps not less than
$10 for every man, woman and child
in the county, which in view of the
poverty of the people, and the scarc
ity of money then in circulation, was
indeed an evidence of the greatest
public spirit; an amount of money
harder to raise then than 11,000,000
would be now by tho people of this
The Old llalldlna;.
"Could the walls of that old build
ing rclato the scenes that they have
witnessed, and re-echo the sounds
they have heard, what a story they
could tell. From it have issued
more than 17,00) official licenses au
thorizing the solemn, God ordained
rites of matrimony, and thero we
find the sad record of thousands of
deaths records of joy and happiness
on the one hand and of grief and
sorrow on the other. There are
recorded the story of elections, the
history of the rise and fall of many
an ambition. There are preserved
the evidences of the titles of the peo
ple to their homes and their belong
ings; the administration of the es
tates of departed loved ones; the
financial records of the county; the
enlistment of tho heroic volunteer
for the preservation of our national
life and bis honorable discharge; in
the record of the 11.C97 civil causes
that have been recorded on the
(Continued on S recti yagi .)
- - .1 '7: ,'-,(

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