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Members of the Territorial Legislature


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Transcription contributed by Martie Callihan 28 Oct 2004

Sources:
The History of Warren County Ohio
Part III, The History of Warren County
Chapter IV. Pioneer History
(Chicago, IL: W. H. Beers Co, 1882; reprint, Mt. Vernon, IN: Windmill Publications, 1992)
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In October, 1800, an election was held for Representatives in the second Territorial Legislature. This election was held under a law, passed by the first Territorial Legislature, which required the polls to be opened in each county at the court house on the second Tuesday in October, 1800, between the hours of 10 and 11 in the forenoon, and to be kept open until 5 o'clock in the afternoon, and again opened the next day from 10 until 5 o'clock, and then finally closed, unless some candidate or the judges desired the election to be continued, in which case the poll was to be open the third day from 10 until 3 o'clock. The election at Cincinnati continued three days. The vote was taken viva voce. There were seven Representatives to elect from Hamilton County, and the following is the vote of the successful candidates: M. Miller, 284; J. Smith. 273; F. Dunlevy, 229; J. Morrow, 212; D. Reeder, 204; J. Ludlow, 187; J. White, 162. On the same day, William Lytle was elected for the ensuing session in place of Aaron Cadwell, who had removed from the Territory. The vote stood: William Lytle, 153; F. Dunlevy, 140. Thirty-five persons had been announced by their friends in the columns of the Western Spy as candidates, and at least twenty-four of them received votes. The total number of votes cast at this election cannot now be ascertained.

The election of members of the convention to form a State constitution in October. 1802, was attended with great excitement. It was the first election north of the Ohio in which entered questions of national party politics. One of the questions before the people was whether a State government at all should at that time be formed. The enabling act of Congress, under which the election was held, provided that, after the members of the convention had assembled, they should first determine, by a majority of the whole number elected, whether it was or was not expedient to form a constitution and State government at that time. The friends of Gov. Arthur St. Clair and the Federalists generally were opposed to the formation of a State government; the Repub-

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licans generally favored an immediate admission of the Territory into the Union as a State. At the last session of the Territorial Legislature, the opponents of a State government had been largely in the majority, and, under the lead of Jacob Burnet, of Cincinnati, had passed an act having for its object the division of the Territory into two future States, a measure, which, had it received the sanction of Congress, would long have delayed the admission of both into the Union. The act passed the Council unanimously, and the House by a large majority. A minority of seven Representatives, two of whom were Jeremiah Morrow and Francis Dunlevy, entered their solemn protest against it, and began an appeal to the people and to Congress with a fixed determination to defeat the division of the Territory and to secure an early State government. They were successful. Congress not only refused to divide the Territory, but passed an act to enable the people to form a State government. The canvass which preceded the election of members of the convention was one of great bitterness; fast friends became enemies for life. The increasing unpopularity of Gov. St. Clair, who was accused of a tyrannical and arbitrary exercise of the powers of his office and the declining fortunes of the Federalists in the States intensified the popular excitement.

Some weeks before the election, Representatives from seventeen Republican societies in Hamilton County met at Big Hill, and nominated the following ticket, all but two of whom were elected Francis Dunlevy, William Goforth, C. W. Byrd, Jeremiah Morrow, J. W. Browne, J. Kitchell, Stephen Wood, John Paul, Thomas Smith and John Wilson. The Republicans were overwhelmingly successful, not only in Hamilton County, but throughout the State.

Hamilton County was entitled to ten members of the convention. Ninety-nine candidates were voted for. The names and the vote of those who received over fifty votes are given below, several of whom, it will be seen, resided within the bounds of Warren County. The first-named ten were elected:

F. Dunlevy, 1,635; John Paul, 1,630; J. Morrow, 1,536; C. W. Byrd, 1,338; John Wilson, 1,381; J. Kitchell, 1,172; W. Goforth, 1,128: J. W. Browne, 1,066; John Smith, 964; John Reily, 924; W. James, 910; Thomas Smith, 887; S. Wood, 791; W. C. Schenck, 638; William McMillan, 621; Jacob Burnet, 541; John Bigger, 500; John Ludlow, 571; James McClure. 458; W. Ward, 315; Jacob White, 251; B. Van Cleve, 248; David E. Wade, 183; Abner Gerrard, 150; J. Corbly, 121.

On the second Tuesday of January, 1803, the first election under the State constitution was held. Hamilton County was at this time divided into election districts, the greater portion of Warren County being included in the Deerfield District, with its voting-place at the house of David Sutton in the town of Deerfield. In counting the votes, the vote of the Deerfield District was excluded on account of some irregularity. In Hamilton County, twenty-two persons received votes for Governor, thirty-six for members of the Senate, ninety-seven for members of the House of Representatives and sixteen for Coroner. The county was entitled to four Senators and eight Representatives.

The following was the vote in Hamilton County for Senators: John Paul, 1,490; J. Morrow, 1,374; F. Dunlevy, 1,362; Daniel Symmes, 754; John Reily, 749; William Ward, 293.

The following was the vote for Representatives: Thomas Brown, 1,312; John Bigger, 1,336; William James, 1,323; James Dunn, 994; Thomas McFarland, 924; E. Kibbey, 915; Robert McClure, 842; William Maxwell, 692; William C. Schenck, 491; John Wilson, 501; John Kitchell, 446: William Ward, 442; Edward Meeks, 237; Daniel C. Cooper, 226; Daniel Reeder, 175; John W. Browne, 157: David Sutton, 135; John Reily, 132; James Silvers, 100; Jacob White, 55.


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