VERMONT HISTORICAL MAGAZINE.
BY HON. JOHN STRONG.
THE town of Addison lies on the eastern shore of Lake Champlain, its southern line being a little southeast of the old forts at Crown Point. It originally contained 8,000 acres more than a six-mile township. A small portion lying east of Snake Mountain has been set off to Weybridge. It is very level, except the extreme eastern limit, where Snake Mountain lifts its head, and furnishes some splendid views of the surrounding country. The soil is principally clay, well overlaid with humus; in the vicinity of the mountain, the soil is a strong loam, and on the shores of the lake the shell limestone crops out, giving a mixture of marl and loam. These two portions are well adapted to fruit-growing. Dead Creek, Hospital Creek, Ward's Creek, and Otter Creek, are its streams; no valuable water-power is within its limits, though formerly several saw-mills and clothing-works were in operation.
1609, July 4. On this day, afterwards so celebrated in the general history of our country, Samuel Champlain entered the lake that now bears his name, having left Quebec the 18th of May previous. His party consisted of sixty Huron and Algonquin Indians, and two Frenchmen. Having had to leave his shallop at the rapids above, his Indian allies furnished him with twenty-four bark canoes. In these he proceeded up the lake as far as what is now known as Crown Point. Here, on the 20th of July, at 10 o'clock, P.M., he was met by a party of Iroquois,* who came out from a cape projecting into the lake from the western shore, (Sandy Point, opposite Addison.) At the first, Champlain and his party retreated into the lake. The Iroquois returned to the shore and landed, followed by the Hurons, who fastened their boats to stakes driven in the mud, about an arrow-shot off. Both parties agreed to wait until morning before the battle should begin, and the night was spent in singing the war-song and other Indian rites preparatory to battle. In the morning, at daybreak, the battle commenced. Champlain and his two men at first were kept out of sight. On the landing of the Hurons, the Iroquois came out from behind their barricades, and more noble-looking men Champlain says he had never seen, two of their chiefs especially so. Champlain was now placed in front of his party, the two Frenchmen and some of the Hurons being hidden in ambuscade. Each of the white men was armed with a gun and two pistols. Champlain on landing had put four balls into his gun. When Champlain first stood in front of the Hurons, the Iroquois gazed in wonder on the first white man they had ever seen. Their two prominent chiefs stood close together, and about thirty paces distant. Champlain fired at them, killing both, and mortally wounding one other man. The Iroquois were paralyzed with fear at this new instrument of death, breathing fire and smoke, from which their chiefs' arrow-proof armor was no protection. The other Frenchmen poured in their fire, killing one. This completed the panic, and the Iroquois fled in every direction, crying, "The devil! the devil!" On examining the armor of the chiefs, it was found to be woven with a thread of cotton, (where did they get it?) and a thread of bark. They were armed with tomahawks of metal. After the battle they crossed the lake to Chimney Point, (Addison.) Champlain here named the lake for himself, and in the after part of the day started on their return for Canada. This battle was fought two months before Hudson discovered the river that bears his name, four years before the Dutch settlement at New York, and eleven years before the landing at Plymouth.
1664, March 12. Charles II. granted to the Duke of York the province of New York, to include all lands west of the Connecticut River, south and west to the Delaware River.
1665. From its discovery up to this time, Lake Champlain had remained, as it previously was, the highway for the Iroquois and Hurons in their war excursions against each other; the Iroquois having many settlements in the interior of Vermont, its earliest name being Iroquoisia. On Dec. 19th of this year, a company of 600 French, with a party of Algonquins, commanded by M. De Courcelles, started on an
* For a full account of this battle, and its location, see Vergennes Citizen, "Local History," Dec. 25. 1857, by J. S.
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expedition against the Mohawks, at Fort St. Theresa, (near St. John's;) equipped with snowshoes, and other things necessary for a winter campaign.
1666, Jan. 21. They started up the lake, the Indian name of which is very significant, Caniaderi-Guaranti, (the gate of the country.) Arriving at Bulwagga Bay, (opposite Addison,) they took the route across to the head-waters of the Hudson, where they arrived the 14th of February, the snow four feet deep. They followed the Hudson down as far as Glens Falls, and then struck across to the Mohawk River, and came out near the Dutch settlement at Schenectady. Here Courcelles fell into an ambush of the Mohawks; and the expedition proved very disastrous to the French. They returned by the same route they came, stopping two days at Chimney Point, for stragglers to come in.
Sept. 28. M. De Tracy, with 600 regulars, the same number of habitans, and 100 Indians, asssembled at Fort St. Anne, previously erected by Capt. La Motte, on an island named for him, "Isle La Motte." This was the first fort erected within the bounds of Lake Champlain. Oct. 3d they commenced their campaign; going up the lake in bateaux and canoes, taking with them two pieces of cannon, which, with incredible perseverance, they took to the farthest village of the Mohawks.
1687, Sept. 8. Gov. Donogan, of New York, in a letter to the king, proposes to build a fort at Corlear's* Lake, at the pass in the lake 150 miles north from Albany, (Chimney Point.)
1690. A party of French and Indians came up the lake on the ice, crossed over and burned Schenectady, and were pursued by the English as far as Crown Point. Here they found the enemy had taken to their skates; the whites returned, and some of the Indians. Others continued the pursuit, and overtook and killed 25 of the French.
March 26. The Mayor, Aldermen, and Justices of the City and County of Albany, gave Capt. Jacobus D'Narm orders to take 17 men and pass by way of "Schuytook," and take from thence 20 savages, and Dick Albatrose. Brad was sent as guide and interpreter. They were to go to Crown Point.
March 31. Gov. Liesler wrote to the Bishop of Salisbury that he had sent to the pass, on the lake, fifty men to maintain it, as an outpost.
April 1. Capt. Abraham Schuyler was ordered to the mouth of Otter Creek with nine men; Lawrence, the Mohawk chief, and his party of Indians, "to watch day and night for one month, and daily communicate with Capt. D'Narm." At the same time, D'Narm's orders were changed to select some other place at the Pass. This he did, and built a little stone fort at Chimney Point, in Addison; this was the first possession or occupation by civilized men in Vermont.
July 31. John Winthrop was commissioned to command an expedition against Canada, which proceeded as far as Kah-sha-quah-na, (Whitehall,) and miserably failed; after eight days they commenced their retreat.
Aug. 13. Capt. John Schuyler, (father of Gen. Philip Schuyler, of Revolutionary fame,) mortified at the entire failure of an expedition from which so much had been hoped, obtained permission to raise a volunteer force, and enlisted from the army 120 Indians and 29 whites; next day he met Capt. Glen, who had been sent to Tsin-on-drosie, (Ticonderoga, signifying noisy, or rushing water,) with 28 whites and 5 Indians. The Indians and 13 of the whites joined Schuyler's party. Schuyler proceeded down the lake, and reached Laprairie, opposite Montreal, the 22d. Schuyler intended to have taken the fort by surprise, which no doubt he would have done but for the folly of his savages, who gave the warwhoop the moment the word to advance had been given. Most of the French succeeded in reaching the fort. Schuyler's party burned all the dwellings and barns, slaughtered 150 head of cattle, killed 6, and took 19 of the enemy prisoners, and commenced a rapid retreat.
24. Reached Fort La Motte; 25, reached Sand Point, (query, Colchester Point;) here they shot two elk; 26, stopped at the little stone fort, which no doubt was the fort built by D'Narm and Schuyler. This was the first English war-party that passed through the lake.
1691. Peter Schuyler also passed through the lake on foray on Canada, and attacked Laprairie. De Callieres, Governor of Montreal, brought 800 troops against him and his 300 Mohawk Indians. Schuyler succeeded in killing about 300 of the enemy, with but a trifling loss on his part.
1694. Godfrey Dellious, the Dutch minister at Albany, procured a grant of land from the Mohawks, commencing at the northwest bounds of Saratoga, extending north on the east side of Wood Creek and Lake Champlain, to "Rock Retzio," (Button Bay;) its eastern line crossed the falls at Middlebury. This was the first paper title to lands in Addison County.
1696, Sept. 3. Charles II. confirmed the title to Dellious. This was afterwards revoked. This revocation Dellious resisted, and sold his title to Lydius, his successor in the ministry at Albany.
1730. The French built a small fort at Pt. à la Chevelure, (now Chimney Point,) and probably repaired the little stone fort built by D'Narm in 1690. At this time there were two islands opposite here, one directly west, the other off against Hospital Creek; the French called them
* Corlear, a Dutchman living at Schenectady, at the time of Courcelles's defeat, was very kind to the captive French, ransoming them from the Mohawks, and sending them home to Canada; Courcelles invited him to visit Canada, and while on his way was drowned in the lake a little north of Otter Creek. This gave rise to the story that Champlain was drowned in the lake. The English and Dutch called the lake Corlear.
Aux Boiteux. All trace of these islands has long since vanished. The old embankments of this fort are many of them still visible.
1731. This year the French built a fort on the opposite side of the lake, which they called Fort Frederic, for Frederic Maurepas, then Secretary of State.
1742. In a grant to Benning Wentworth, New Hampshire was extended west to the lake.
1743, April 20. The king of France granted to Hocquart, (Intendant of New France,) a seigniory of four leagues front on the lake, by five leagues deep, and the south line half a mile south of the south line of what is now Addison, and the north line near Adams Ferry, in Panton; registered at Quebec, Oct. 7, 1743.
1749. Kahn, the Swedish naturalist, visited Fort Frederic and Hocquart. He says of Pt. à la Chevelure or Hocquart: "I found quite a settlement, a stone wind-mill and fort in one, with five or six small cannon mounted; the whole inclosed by embankments."
Within the inclosure was a neat church, and throughout the settlement well-cultivated gardens, with some good fruit, as apples, plums, currants, &c. During the next ten years, these settlements were extended north on the lake some four miles; the remains of old cellars and gardens still to be seen show a more thickly settled street than occupies it now.
1750. The Schaghiticoke Indians left then residence at Schaghiticoke, and went to Canada to reside.
1754, Aug. 28. These, with other Canadian Indians, made an inroad upon the English settlements, and destroyed Hoosick. They were, no doubt, the leaders in all the Indian forays in this section, until Canada was conquered.
1755. A strong effort was made this year by the Colonies, to drive back the French from Crown Point. The French sent "Dieskau," with over 3,000 men. Gen. Johnson with 2,850 men, proceeded as far as Lake George. He here encountered Dieskau, defeated and took him prisoner, yet made no attempt on Crown Point. A few extracts from the reports of Rodgers and Putnam, employed as scouts to spy out Crown Point, show not only the strength and position of the French, but the daring character of the men.*
1755, Sept. 17. "At evening, discovered the wheat-fields, and four houses, about two miles south of Crown Point Fort. In the night went to the intrenchment, made from the fort, encompassing a little hill, the trenches not finished, but reach about 30 rods from the fort. The intrenchment begins at the S. W. corner of the fort, running S. W., is about two rods wide at the fort, and fifteen at the other end. Went into the trench and stayed there until morning. Went on to the mountain, a mile west of the fort; could see the fort and all its appurtenances. There was an addition to the fort about twenty-five rods from the N. W. corner, which reached to the water. It inclosed some buildings; — many tents set up in it. A wind-mill about sixty rods south of the fort, between which and the fort many tents were set up, — saw the troops exercised; there were about six hundred.
Oct. 18. Arrived at the mountain west of Crown Point, where I lay all night and the next day, observing the enemy; saw ambuscades built about 30 rods S. W. of the fort. In the evening went down to the houses south of the fort, and on the lake; went into a barn well filled with wheat, and left three men there, and with one man went on towards the fort, to make further discoveries. Found a good place to ambush; went back and got the other three men, and ambushed about 60 rods from the fort; lay here until about ten o'clock next morning; saw the enemy moving about, — judged there were 500 of them. At length a Frenchman came out of the fort, towards us, without his gun. He came within fifteen rods of where we lay, and I and another man ran up to him in order to captivate him; but he refused to take quarter; so we killed him and took his scalp, in plain sight of the fort; then run, in plain view, about 20 rods, and made our escape.
1756, Jan. 29. Started to look into Crown Point.
Feb. 2. Arrived at the mountain west, which we called Mount Ogden. In the evening went down and through a small village, half a mile south of the fort; laid in ambush until nine the next morning; took one Frenchman prisoner as he came down the road, and two more a-coming towards us, discovered us, and ran; we pursued them within gunshot of the fort. We immediately set fire to the barns and houses, where was abundance of wheat and other grain; we killed their cattle, horses, and hogs, in number about fifty; left none living in said village, to our knowledge; we came off leaving the village on fire.
Israel Putnam was with Rodgers in all these scouts.
1757. Montcalm, with 12,000 men encamped at Crown Point and Ticonderoga.
Aug. 3. Invested Fort William Henry. Gen. Webb commanded the British forces, and lay at Fort Edward. Webb refused to send any succor to Monroe, at Fort William Henry, and left them to their fate; which was a massacre that has left a stain upon the otherwise fair fame of Montcalm, that no explanation can efface.
1758. Abercrombie's disastrous expedition to take Ticonderoga and Crown Point, marks this year, and can be found in any of our histories.
1759. After the taking of Ticonderoga by Amherst, the French, Aug. 1, burned their fort at
* These old reports are in the State archives at Albany.
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Crown Point, and Chimney Point, the settlers abandoning their farms, and going with the troops to Canada. Gen. Amherst commenced those stupendous fortifications at Crown Point that were three years in building, and cost two million pounds sterling. It is pentagonal in form; the walls are of solid masonry, 25 feet thick, and 20 feet high, and half a mile in circuit, inclosing extensive stone barracks, two stories high, extending the whole length on the east and west sides, with a large parade-ground between. In the N. E. corner, a well, blasted 90 feet through solid limestone, to a beautiful sand bottom, furnished a never-failing fountain of water. This impregnable fortress was accidentally burned, April 21, 1773, which accounts for the fact of no battle being fought there during the Revolution.
1761, Oct. 14. The proprietors of Addison procured a charter of Benning Wentworth, Governor of New Hampshire, of this township, on account of a bend in the lake.
Nov. 3. Panton also procured a charter. Unfortunately for them, it lapped on to Addison nearly four miles in width on the lake. The proprietors of Panton run out their township first, and no doubt finding that there would be a clashing of title, ordered it fenced, so as to hold it by possession. Benjamin Kellogg, one of Amherst's soldiers, from Connecticut, used to frequent the Salt Licks below, where old Gen. John Strong's mansion now stands, for the purpose of procuring venison for the officers of the army then at Crown Point, and was favorably struck with the advantages for settlement in this country. The little clearings made by the French, and now abandoned, were strong inducements to a new settler. This he told to his neighbors on his return home in 1760.
1762. Kellogg came up to his old hunting-ground in the fall of this year, and also in '63 and '64.
In '64, some of the proprietors of Panton came with him.
1763, April 7. Gilles Hocquart deeded to M. Michel, Chartier De Lotbiniere, all of his seigniory lying north of Hospital Creek. Lotbiniere petitioned the British Government from time to time to be reinstated in his lands; and to quiet the matter, received, Feb. 13, 1776, a seigniory in Canada, on the St. Lawrence, in exchange for his on the lake.
Oct. 7. A grant of land was made by the Governor of New York, to Col. David Wooster, beginning near the south line of Addison, running east to Dead Creek, and north to D. V. Chambers's land; also to Col. Charles Forbes, from Wooster's to Potash Bay; and one to Lieut. Ramsay, north beyond the bounds of Addison. Directly east of Forbes and Ramsay's was a grant to J. W. Hogarty; and east of Wooster's, a grant to Sir John Sinclair and Mr. Wilkins.
1765. In the spring of this year, Zadock Everest, David Vallance, and one other settler, came on and begun a clearing about three miles north of Chimney Point. In September, Benjamin Kellogg came up to his fall hunt. John Strong came with him, to look for a home in the Vermont wilderness. They went to where Everest and Valiance were at work, stayed with them a few days, and helped them get in their fallow of wheat, then took a look of the country as far east as Middlebury; probably the first white men who ever looked upon it. On their return to the lake, Strong concluded to build him a house there. This, with the help of Kellogg and the other three men, he did, selecting the foundations of an old French house (cellar and chimneys) as the site. This was on the farm where he afterwards lived and died. This was the first house built by an English settler, north of Massachusetts. The party now all returned to Connecticut.
1766, February. Strong came on with his family, by way of Lake George and Lake Champlain. He had a wife and three children; Asa, six years old, Samuel, and Polly. In June following, John Strong was born, — the first English child born in Addison county.
May. T. Everest, T. Valiance, John Chipman, and six others, with their families, came on by way of Otter Creek. Chipman stopped in Middlebury; the others came on to the take, some settling in Addison, and some in Panton. The settlers had bought their lands of Panton, and supposed they were within the bounds of Panton; and so they were, and in the bounds of Addison, also; and, Addison being the oldest charter, of course held.*
1767 and 1768. In the latter year Col. Wooster came on to look for his land, and found five families on it, — John Strong, Benjamin Kellogg, Phineas Spalding, David Valiance, and Pang-born. Some agreed to leave, and some he sued before the court in Albany. The settlers were much distressed for want of grist-mills, having to go to Stillwater, N. Y., for their grinding. This reduced them to the necessity of constructing large wooden mortars, made from a hard-wood log, set one end firm in the ground, the other hollowed out by kindling a fire of coals in the centre, and keeping it up until sufficiently large, and then smoothed out, and the pestle worked by a sweep like the old-fashioned mill-sweeps.
1773, Aug. 12. Strong, Kellogg, Everest, and ten other Addison boys were of Allen's party who dispossessed Reid at the Falls near Vergennes.
On their return home, the Addison men found Col. Wooster, with his sheriff, serving writs of ejectment on those that were on his land. Their indignation rose to the highest pitch, that whilst
* Mr. S., of Panton, will dwell somewhat on this, and I leave it for him.
they had been driving off the Yorkers for their neighbors, their own homes had been invaded. They finally took him and his sheriff, and tied them to a tree, and threatened to give them the "Beech Seal." After blustering a good deal, Wooster saw they were in earnest, and that his threats of New York law did not intimidate them. He gave in, sent off his sheriff, and took up his copies of writs he had left, and promised not to disturb them again. The whole was sealed over a stiff mug of flip; and in the morning the Colonel left. He was afterwards a Major-General in the Revolutionary army, and mortally wounded at Ridgefield, April 27, 1777.
Probably no settlers in Vermont held their lands by so precarious a title as the settlers in that part of Addison claimed by Panton. In Washington County, New York, the Rev. John Lydins was prosecuting the Dellius title; then there was the French title, which had been favorably reported on by the Home Government; then Wooster's title, which by suit he was trying to enforce, with the garrison at Crown Point to back him. And as they had bought their lands of Panton, there was the elder title of Addison, issuing from the same fountain as the one they claimed under. Their stubborn resistance to the proprietors of Addison induced them to grant the settlers the 8,000 acres which they held more than a six-mile township. This was located on that part of Addison claimed by Panton, and the whole difficulty amicably adjusted. No country ever produced a more hardy, industrious, resolute, and fearless race of men than Western Vermont. Chimney Point was laid out into a town of one acre to every proprietor's right, with grounds for public buildings, common, etc.; the streets at right angles, and a broadway, ten rods wide, leading north through the town. It was expected from its vicinity to the fort, to be the centre of trade for all the surrounding country.
1775. The news of the battle at Lexington had thrilled through the hearts of the people like electricity. Col. Ethan Allen, who had heretofore stood between the settlers and ruin, was calling for volunteers. Addison answered promptly. Among those who went, was Lieut. Benjamin Everest. (See Biography.)
May 9. Allen, with his Green Mountain boys, aided by Arnold and Warner, took Ticonderoga, and the next day Warner took Crown Point.
The conquest of Canada was planned, which promising so fair at the first, resulted so disastrously to the Americans in the end.
1776, July 12. The retreating Americans arrived at Crown Point; the smallpox had made and was making terrible havoc amongst them. Out of all the regiments sent to Canada, only 7,006 returned to Crown Point, and great numbers died after reaching there. Gen. Gates took the command, and a hospital was built on the north side of the mouth of Hospital Creek (hence its name.) The numbers that died here were so great that pits were dug, into which the dead were thrown, without coffins, until filled, and a light covering of earth thrown over the whole. Gen. Gates immediately commenced to build his fleet. The settlers in Addison engaged with zeal in getting out timber and other material, so that on the 18th of August, one sloop, three schooners, and five gunboats were ready. They carried 55 guns, 70 swivels, and had a complement of 395 men. Arnold took the command.
Oct. 10. The British, commanded by Capt. Pringle, had 4 sloops, — the Maria, Carleton, Thunderer, and Inflexible, with gun-boats, flatboats and bateaux, mounting eighty cannon and several howitzers, and manned by 700 seamen. The American fleet was posted between Valcour Island and the western shore. A skirmish ensued, in which the Washington, commanded by Waterbury, suffered severely; one schooner was burned, and a gunboat sunk. The British lost three gunboats, — two sunk and one blown up. In the night Arnold retreated. The British overtook him the next day near Ferris, now Adams Ferry. An engagement of four hours ensued. Waterbury was obliged to surrender. Arnold, seeing the day was lost, ran his vessels ashore, burning some, blowing up some, and scuttling the rest. At the head of his men he took his march for Crown Point. On arriving at Z. Everest's, about four miles from the scene of action, he halted, and Everest, with his known hospitality, furnished them with refreshments.
Gen. Gates recalled all the troops from Crown Point, and Carleton took possession. He issued a proclamation to the settlers on the eastern shore, offering protection papers, on condition of remaining neutral. Some took the protection, others did not; and quite a number abandoned their farms and went to their former places of residence. This abandonment has given rise to many mistakes as to the time the settlers left the country; some writers fixing it in the fall of '76, and some in '77, — the truth being a partial flight in '76, and a total abandonment in '77.
1776, July 24. Addison was one of the thirty-five towns that met at Dorset, and again on the 25th of September, and again Jan. 15, 1777, at Westminster, when they declared themselves a free and independent State. Addison was represented in these conventions by David Valiance. All west of the mountains, to Canada line, was formed into one county, — Bennington.
1777. This year is memorable for the invasion of Burgoyne. Early in May he came up the lake as far as the River Bouquet, on the York side. He here encamped, gathered large bodies of Indians to his army, issued a very pompous proclamation, and the first of June broke up his encampment, and fled in earnest; and in such haste that many left their tables standing just as they rose from their breakfast; some burned their
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household utensils, etc. Gen. St. Clair, who commanded the Americans at Crown Point, furnished the settlers with boats at Chimney Point, to take them to Whitehall. A party of Indians that came down through the woods, reached the point just as the last boats were leaving, and fired upon them; fortunately wounding none, although the balls fell like hailstones all about them, striking the boats in several places. From Whitehall the settlers dispersed in every direction; — most of those from Addison going up east, into Pawlet, Dorset, and other towns in Bennington county.
1778. Major Carleton made a descent from Canada, and took 39 men and boys prisoners. Among them were Nathan and Marshal Smith, of Bridport, Benjamin Kellogg, and Ward and Joseph Everest, of Addison; Holcomb Spalding, two Ferrises, and Grandy, of Panton; Hinckly, of Shoreham. Grandy and Hinckly were liberated, to take care of the women and children, these and other families having come back to their farms on the defeat of Burgoyne; all now abandoned the settlement, except three families, and did not return until after the war. The prisoners were taken to Quebec, where they arrived Dec. 6.
1779. Kellogg and a number of others died in prison during the winter. They all suffered unaccountable hardships. In the spring they were taken down the river some 90 miles. May 13, about midnight, eight of them made their escape. On reaching the south shore, they divided into two parties, four in each. On getting opposite Quebec, one party was betrayed by a Frenchman, and again taken prisoners. Three of them again made their escape that night, — Ward and the two Smiths, — and after being again taken by the Indians, and again escaping, pursued by the Indians for fourteen days and nights, all their knowledge of Indian craft and devices being put to the utmost trial, they finally succeeded in throwing off their pursuers, and arrived in Panton, where they met three Americans, on a scout, from whom they got provisions; which was the first food they had tasted since their last escape, except such as they procured in the woods, — in all, twenty days. The next day they stopped at Hemenway's, in Bridport. (Hemenway never left his farm through all the war.) After one day's rest, they pushed on to Pittsford.
1781. Gen. St. Leger, at the head of a British force, went up the lake, and took position at Ticonderoga. No further fighting was had in this section until the close of the war.
1783. The close of the war gave every security to settlers. The return of the old, and the great influx of new, gave such an impetus to the prosperity of the town, that it at once took the lead in the county. The eastern part of the town now began to be settled. The Willmarths, Clark, Pond, and Ward, were among the earliest. The Smiths, Seger, and others, followed soon after. Their descendants still occupy a large portion of that part of the town; and like their fathers, are prominent citizens in the political and business relations of the town. The early settlers had much to contend with from the want of mills, stores, and roads; perhaps not as much as those in the west part, who came so much earlier, but yet enough to lay the present generation under a debt of gratitude hardly to be estimated.
1784. John Strong was elected to represent the town in the legislature, which had not been represented since '77.
1785. Addison county was incorporated and extended north to Canada. Addison and Colchester were half-shire towns. The first court was holden the first Tuesday in March, in the tavern-house of Z. Everest. In November following, it was holden at Colchester. The next year it was held in the brick house built by Jonah Crane, (now owned by H. Crane, Esq.,) and was the first brick house in the county. The court held its sessions here until removed to Middlebury. John Strong was presiding judge, and Gamaliel Painter and Ira Allen assistant judges, Samuel Chipman, Jr., Clerk, and Noah Chittenden, sheriff.
1786. Quite a change in the constituting of the court took place; there were four side judges, — William Brush, Abel Thompson, Samuel Lane, and Judge Allen. Judge Painter was appointed sheriff, Roswell Hopkins, clerk, Seth Stoors, State attorney. A Probate Court was established, John Strong, judge.
1787. Chittenden county was taken from Addison county; Hiland Hall was appointed in place of Judge Allen, and Judge Painter again placed on the bench. Since that time, only two assistant judges have ever sat on the bench at one time.
1790. New York and Vermont settled their controversy about land titles and jurisdiction, Vermont paying $30,000 in full.
1791, Feb. 18. Congress, without debate, or dissenting vote, admitted Vermont to the Union.
March 4. Her Senators and Representatives took their seats.
1792, April. This was the last time the court held a session at this place. Located at the extreme western point of the county, without water-power, around which villages spring up, the fort burned and abandoned, Addison took her place as an agricultural town, and early became celebrated for the large crops of wheat and the fine horses she produced. A race-course was established at Chimney Point, and was resorted to from all parts of the State. Some excellent blood-horses were introduced, and large numbers raised. A Grammar School was incorporated; a building 50 feet by 34 feet was built ; the lower part used for the meeting of the Congregational Church, and the upper part for the academy. It flourished for several years under the direction of the Rev. Justice Hough.
1800—1812. The farmers in Addison became more and more thrifty; the log house gave way to the frame dwelling, or the more costly brick mansion; the wilderness to cultivated fields. The clarion blast of war showed that the sons of worthy sires had not degenerated. Two companies were raised to repel the enemy from Plattsburgh, and under General Samuel Strong, of Vergennes, did essential service. Dr. P. D. Cheny, of Addison, was surgeon of the regiment, and rendered material aid to the wounded after the battle on the lake.
1813—1860. The history of Addison, like the history of most agricultural towns, in times of peace, is of that even, peaceful tenor, that the history of one year is the history of all. Addison was long noted for her excellent crops of winter wheat, until the midge, (generally called the weevil,) made its appearance, since when, it is too precarious to be gone into extensively; and the soil is as well adapted to it as ever. Messrs. Robert Chambers and E. Swift introduced the first Durham bull ever brought into the county.
A. Crane and C. Strong soon after introduced others; and Addison has always been noted for good cattle and sheep, taking her full proportion of premiums at the various Agricultural Fairs.
was born in Salisbury, Conn., A. D. 1738, and when 21 years of age was married to Agnes McCure, also born in Salisbury, the only daughter of J. McCure, a wealthy landholder of Edinburgh, Scotland, who, being deeply implicated in the "Rebellion of 1715, fled to this country, having first, (to prevent confiscation,) put into the hands of a friend his large property. He died in a few years, leaving two young children, a son and daughter. His wife survived him but a few weeks. He was in the receipt of rents until the time of his death, after which no further remittances were made, and Agnes was put out to service, where she remained until she married. Her brother John was killed in a naval action soon after the death of her parents, so that she was early inured to hardship. Though fragile in form and constitution, when their increasing family demanded some extra effort, the proposition to encounter the danger and privations of removal to the wilds of the West, was met with cheerfulness and alacrity.
In February, 1766, they started, all his worldly goods consisting of an old pair of mares and a sleigh. His wife and three children, and all his household goods, found ample space in the sleigh. Their route lay through Albany and across the Hudson to Fort Gurney; then on the ice on Lake George to Ticonderoga; then on the ice on Lake Champlain to their house erected the fall before. He at once commenced chopping a fallow, and as soon as the spring opened, corn and potatoes ware planted, and the clearing kept on, to be ready for the winter wheat. About the 1st of June he was taken with chills and fever, (fever ague,) but a wife and children were dependent on his constant exertions, far away from resources. Kind neighbors had come in, but they were no better off than himself. So when the fit came on, he would lie down by a log heap until it was partly over, and then up and at it again. Wild animals were very troublesome, especially bears, with which he had many encounters. In September, Mrs. Strong, whilst her husband and a few neighbors had joined together and gone up the lake in a bateau, and thence to Albany, to procure necessaries for the settlement, one evening was sitting by the fire with her children about her. The evenings had become somewhat chilly. The kettle of samp intended for supper had just been taken from the fire, when, hearing a noise, she looked towards the door, and saw the blanket that served the purpose of one, raised up, and an old bear protruding her head into the room. The sight of the fire caused her to dodge back. Mrs. Strong caught the baby, and sending the older children to the loft, she followed and drew the ladder after her. The floor of this loft was made by laying small poles close together, which gave ample opportunity to see all passing below. The bear, after reconnoitring the place several times, came in with two cubs. They first upset the milk that had been placed on the table for supper. The old bear then made a dash at the pudding-pot, and thrusting in her head, swallowed a large mouthful and filled her mouth with another, before she found it was boiling hot. Giving a furious growl, she struck the pot with her paw, upsetting and breaking it. She then set herself up on end, endeavoring to poke the pudding from her mouth, whining and growling all the time. This was so ludicrous, the cubs setting up on end, one on each side, and wondering what ailed their mother, that it drew a loud laugh from the children above. This seemed to excite the anger of the beast more than ever, and with a roar she rushed for the place where they had escaped, up aloft. This they had covered up when they drew up the ladder, and now commenced a struggle; the bear to get up, the mother and children to keep her down. After many fruitless attempts, the bear gave it up, and towards morning moved off. After Strong's return, a door made from the slabs split from the basswood and hung on wooden hinges gave them some security from like inroads in future.
At another time, Strong and Smalley were crossing the lake from Chimney Point to McKensies, in Neviah, in a canoe, and when near Sandy Point, they saw something swimming in the water, which they at once supposed to be a deer, and gave chase. As they drew near, they found, instead of a deer, it was an enormous black bear that they were pursuing. This was a different
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affair, and a consultation was held. They had nothing but an axe, but they had too much pluck to back out, so it was planned that Smalley was to get into the wake of the bear, and run the canoe bows on, whilst Strong, standing in the bow with the axe, was to knock Bruin on the head. But
"The best laid scheme of mice and men, gang aft agley."
Smalley brought the boat up in good style, and Strong, with all the force of a man used to felling the giants of the forest, struck the bear full on the head. The bear minded it no more than if it had been a walking-stick instead of an axe, but instantly turning, placed both fore paws on the side of the boat and upset it, turning both the men into the lake. The bear, instead of following them, crawled up on to the bottom of the boat, and took possession, quietly seating himself, and looking on with great gravity, whilst the men were floundering in the water. Smalley, who was not a very good swimmer, seeing the bear so quiet, thought he might hold on by one end of the boat, until it should float ashore; but no, Bruin would have none of their company; and they were obliged, each with an oar under his arms to sustain him, to make the best of their way to Sandy Point, the nearest shore. From here they had to go around the head of Bullwagga Bay, and north as far as Point Henry, where they found their boat, minus their axe and other baggage, and were very glad to come off so well.
One more bear story, and that will do.
One fall the bears were making destructive work in his cornfield; he found where they came in, and placed his trap in their road. The second morning he found his trap gone, and plenty of signs that a large bear had taken it; he got two of his neighbors, Kellogg and Pangborn, to go with him. They had two guns and an axe, and three dogs. After following the track for some two miles they heard the dogs, and as they came up they found the hear with her back against a large stub, cuffing the dogs whenever they came within reach. The trap was on one of her hind legs. Kellogg proposed to shoot the bear, but Strong said he could kill her with his axe as well as to waste a charge of ammunition, which was scarce and difficult to get. So taking the axe, and remembering his encounter on the lake, he turned the bit of the axe, intending to split her head open. He approached cautiously, and when near enough, gave the blow with tremendous force, but the bear, with all the skill of a practised boxer, caught the axe as it was descending; with one of her paws knocking it out of his hand, at the same time catching him with the other, she drew him up for the death-hug; as she did so, endeavoring to grab his throat in her mouth. One moment more, and he would have been a mangled corpse. The first effort he avoided by bending his head close upon his breast; the second, by running his left hand into her open mouth and down her throat, until he could hook the ends of his fingers into the roots of her tongue. This hold he kept until the end, although every time the bear closed her mouth his thumb was crushed and ground between her grinders, her mouth being so narrow that it was impossible to put it out of the way. He now called on Kellogg for God's sake to shoot the bear, but this he dared not do, for fear of shooting Strong; for as soon as he got the bear by the tongue, she endeavored to get rid of him by plunging and rolling about, so that one moment the bear was on top, and the next Strong. In these struggles they came where the axe had been thrown at first. This Strong seized with his right hand, and striking the bear in the small of the back, severed it at a blow. This so paralyzed her that the loosened her hug, and he snatched his hand from her mouth, and cleared himself of her reach. The men then dispatched her with their guns. His mutilated thumb he carried, as a memento of the fight, to his dying day.
Indians in their visits caused more fear than wild beasts, especially after the commencement of the Revolutionary struggle. Although through the policy of some of the leading men of the Grants the British had been induced to treat the settlers on the east side of the lake with mildness, and had forbidden the Indians to molest them, yet their savageness was ready to burst forth on the slightest provocation. So much was this the case, that, if a party of Indians made their appearance when the men were absent, the women allowed them to help themselves to whatever they liked. At one time a party came in when Mrs Strong was alone. They first took the cream from the milk and rubbed it on their faces; then rubbing soot on their hands, painted themselves in all the hideousness of the war-paint, and sang the war-song with whoop and dances. Just as they were leaving, one of them discovered a showy colored short-gown, that her husband had just made her a birthday present of. This he took, and putting it on, seemed greatly delighted, and with yells and whoops they departed. She had a place between the outer wall of the house and the chimney, where, whenever Indians were seen about, she used to hide her babe. A barrel of sour milk was kept, where a set of pewter dishes (a rare thing at that time) was, as soon as used, put for security. One day an Indian came in and saw a small plate, which he took, and making a hole in it, put in a string and wore it off as an ornament. They would sometimes, when hungry, kill a hog or beef. The following will show that their fears were not groundless: One morning in June, just when the sky takes on that peculiar hue that has given it the term, "gray of the morning," Mrs. Strong arose and went to the spring, a few rods from the house, standing on the bank of the lake. The birds had just commenced their morning matins,
making "woodland and lea" vocal with song. The air was laden with the perfume of the wild flowers. Not a breath stirred a leaf or ruffled the glass-like surface of the waters of the lake. She stopped a moment to enjoy it. As she stood listening to the song of the birds, she thought she heard the dip of a paddle in the water, and looking through the trees that fringed the bank, saw a canoe filled with Indians. In a moment more the boat passed the trees in full view. A pole was fastened upright in the bow, on the top of which was the scalp of a little girl ten years old her flaxen ringlets just stirred in the morning air, while streams of clotted blood all down showed it was placed there whilst yet bleeding. Whilst horror froze her to the spot she thought she recognized it as the hair of a beautiful child of a dear friend of hers, living on the other side of the lake. She saw other scalps attached to their waist-belts, whilst two other canoes, farther out in the lake, each had the terrible signal at their bows. The Indians, on seeing her, gave the war-whoop, and made signals as though they would scalp her; and she fled to the house like a frightened deer. The day brought tidings that their friends on the other side had all been massacred and scalped, six in number, and their houses burned.
The morning previous to the taking of Crown Point by Burgoyne, Mrs. Strong was sitting at the breakfast-table. Her two oldest sons, Asa and Samuel, had started at daylight to hunt for young cattle that had strayed in the woods. Her husband had gone to Rutland to procure supplies of beef for the American forces at Ticonderoga and Crown Point, when a daughter of Kellogg, (afterwards Mrs. Markham,) came rushing in with, "The Indians are coming, and we are all flying. There are bateaux at the Point to take us off, and you must hurry!" And back she ran to help her own folks, her father then being a prisoner in Quebec. Mrs. Strong was in very feeble health, totally unable to encounter hardship or fatigue; her husband away, her two oldest sons in the woods, and no one to warn or seek them. There was no way but to try and save the children that were with her. She took her youngest, a babe of six months, (Cyrus,) and putting him in a sack, with his head and shoulders out, fastened him on the back of her eldest daughter, and making up a bundle for each of the other children of the most necessary clothing, started them for the Point, charging them not to loiter or wait for her, and she would overtake them. After putting out the fire she closed the house, leaving the breakfast-table standing as it was when they first heard the news. She travelled on as fast as she was able until she came to the north bank of Hospital Creek. Here, entirely exhausted, she sat down, when Spalding, of Panton, who had waited to see all off, and also the approach of the foe, came riding at full gallop up the road, and seeing her sitting where she was, said, "Are you crazy? The Indians are in sight, — the lake is covered, and the woods are full of them!" She told him she could go no farther. He dismounted, and placing her on the pillion, remounted, and putting his horse to his speed, arrived just as the last bateau, containing her children, was putting off, — it having remained as long as they dared on her account. She was put on board, Spalding going on with his horse. That night they arrived at Whitehall. Here the settlers scattered in many directions, — some returning to Connecticut, others going east. Zadock Everest and family, with other neighbors, went east, and she went with them. Asa and Samuel, as they returned towards night, saw, by the columns of smoke coming up from every house, that the Indians must have been there. They hid themselves until dark, and then, cautiously approaching, found their house a blazing ruin. Believing that the family had escaped, they retraced their steps, and made the best of their way east towards Otter Creek. At daylight they found themselves near Snake Mountain. Fortunately, when they left home the morning previous, they took a gun and ammunition. They shot a partridge and roasted it, saving a part for their dinner, and pushed on, and in about a week found their mother and the rest of the children. They then hired a log-house, the older boys working out, and each doing what they could for their support.
Strong, hearing that Burgoyne had taken Crown Point, left his cattle at Brandon, and hastened for his home. On coming within sight of the forts he secreted himself until night. He then moved on cautiously, for fear of the Indians. On reaching the centre of a narrow ridge of land, just south of Foard's Creek, with a marsh on either side, covered with a dense growth of alders and willow, a yell, as demoniac as though the gates of the infernal regions had opened upon him, burst forth, and instantly he was surrounded by more than 200 savages, whooping and swinging their tomahawks over his head. Instant death seemed inevitable. A Tory was in command. Having heard that he was expected in with cattle, he had got the assistance of this band of Indians to intercept him. After a few moments he partially stilled the Indians, and addressing Strong, asked, "Where are your cattle?" Strong answered, "Safe." This short and disappointing answer fairly drove him mad with rage, and no doubt he would have sacrificed him on the spot, if an old chief, who knew Strong, had not interposed. Strong then told them to take him to the fort, and whatever was proper for him to answer, he would cheerfully do. He was then bound and taken to the other side, and placed in the guard-house until morning. When he was brought before the commanding officer, who was Col. Frasier, (afterward killed at Stillwater,) Strong explained who he was, the uncertain fate of his family, and his anxiety on their account.
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Frasier generously let him go on parole, until the middle of November, when he was to be at Crown Point to go with the army and prisoners to Canada. After thanking him, and just as he was leaving, he said, "Colonel, suppose the army never return, how then?" Frasier, smiling incredulously, said, "Then you are released from all obligation." And ordering him a supply of provisions for his journey, dismissed him. He now procured a boat and went to his house, which he found in ashes. After searching for any remains that might be left, in case his wife and children had been burned in the house, he returned to the fort, where he procured a passage up the lake to Whitehall. He was here completely at fault as to which way his family had gone, but was induced to believe they were in Connecticut, where he went, but found they had not been there, and returned and went in another direction, and, after weeks of fruitless search, had almost despaired of finding them, when one evening, weary and foot-sore, he called at a log-house in Dorset, Vt., for entertainment for the night. It was quite dark. A flickering light from the dying embers only rendered things more undistinguishable. He had just taken a seat, when a smart little woman, with a pail of milk, came in, and said, "Moses, can't you take the gentleman's hat?" That voice! He sprang towards her. "Agnes!" And she, with outstretched arms, "John, O John!" How quick the voice of loved ones strikes upon the ear, and vibrates through the heart! That was a happy night in the little log-house. The children came rushing in, and each in turn received their father's caress. Smiles of happiness and tears of joy mingled freely, for a father and husband was restored as from the dead. They had received no tidings of him after he left his cattle and went to look for them, and they mourned him as dead. The next year he hired a farm. He represented Dorset in the legislature from 1779 to 1782, in '81 was elected Assistant Judge for Bennington county, and also in '82, in '83 returned to Addison, on to the old farm where his descendants have ever since remained, — was elected to the legislature from Addison in '84, '85, and '86, — in '85 elected first Judge of the court in Addison county, — and in '86 Judge of Probate and member of the Council. These offices he held until 1801, 16 years; in 1791 was a member of the convention that ratified the Constitution of the United States on the admission of Vermont to the Union. In 1801 his failing health warned him to retire from the cares of political life, and he resigned the many and important offices he then held, and in June, 1816, gave up his life "to God who gave it." As a Christian he was consistent. The Congregational church, of which he was a member, have good reason to remember his liberality. As a patriot and statesman he had the confidence of those who acted with him, wherever he resided.
was born in Connecticut. In the summer of 1765 he came on to Addison, in company with two others, and commenced a clearing, and in September sowed it with wheat. This was the first clearing made by English settlers in this county. They returned to Connecticut in the fall, and the following May, Everest moved on by way of Otter Creek, and located himself in what was then thought to be Panton, and was an active participant in the struggles which the early settlers of this town had to endure. He opened the first public house in this county. On the coming down of Burgoyne, he fled with his family and the settlers. On reaching Whitehall, he turned east into Pawlet, where he remained until 1784, when he returned to his former residence in Addison, the farm now owned by R. W. Eaton, Esq. He was elected a representative from Pawlet, March 12, 1778, and in 1785 from Panton, in '88 and '89, from Addison, and again in '95; and held prominent offices in town for a long series of years. He died in ——, respected as one of the fathers of the town and church. Some very ancient relics were found on this farm several years ago. Gen. C. C. Everest, in digging a well on the height of land, perhaps 150 feet above the present level of the lake, after digging some 20 feet through an almost impervious hard pan, came upon a strata of pebbles and sand, with every appearance of having once been the beach of the lake. Among these pebbles he found a short piece of rope, and an oak chip. The rope was of two strands. Its maker was not ascertained, as a curious old fellow picked it all to pieces before any one was aware what he was about. The chip was half an inch in thickness, and seven or eight inches long, in shape and appearance every way like a chip taken from a good-sized log, the chopper standing on the log and using an axe formed like ours. Where did the chip come from, and of what race of men were the choppers? It was deposited there centuries ago. Another curiosity was discovered on the farm of J. N. Smith. In cutting down a very old and large tree, a stone was found embedded near the heart, that probably had been placed there 150 years before. Did this county formerly belong to the Oneidas? Was this one of their boundary marks? It is a stone placed in a notch made by the blows of an axe in a tree. There were five divisions of this tribe, distinguished from each other by the further devices of the plover, the bear, the tortoise, the eel, and the beaver. There were farther subdivisions, marked by the potatoe, the falcon, the lark, and the partridge.
LIEUT. BENJAMIN EVEREST
was born in Seabury, Conn., and moved with his father to Addison when sixteen years of age. This was in 1769. Three years after his brother, Zadock Everest, came to this country, who was one of the first settlers. As a boy and young man, Benjamin was noted for his prowess and
activity in all athletic exercises. There was not one in all the settlement that could run, jump, or wrestle with him. With a heart that never knew the sensation of fear, and a frame capable of enduring any hardship, he was by nature well fitted to take a part in those troublous times. In August, 1773, when Allen, Warner, and Baker came up to help the settlers drive off Col. Reid and his Yorkers from their position at Vergennes, Everest, with his brother Zadock and other neighbors joined them. After having torn down the mills, burned the dwellings, and destroyed the settlement, and being all ready to return, Allen made such an impression on Benjamin, their spirits were so much in unison, that Everest wished to go with Allen, as more trouble with the Yorkers was expected. Allen was glad of his service, and very soon gave him a sergeant's warrant in his band. From this time until the opening of the Revolution, he was with Allen more or less.
On receipt of intelligence of the battle of Lexington, Everest immediately repaired to Allen's headquarters, where he received a commission as Lieutenant, which was afterwards confirmed. He was very active and useful in procuring men and information to aid in the capture of Ticonderoga and Crown Point, and was with Allen why he entered the fort at Ticonderoga, and went up with Warner to take Crown Point. After Allen was taken prisoner at Montreal, Everest and his company was incorporated into Col. Seth Warner's regiment. He was with Warner at the battle of Hubbardton, and with his company as rangers held the British in check by skirmishing in the woods from point to point, facilitating and covering the retreat of Warner. Warner was not at Bennington at the commencement of the battle, but having information from Stark of the approach of Baum, with orders to hasten to his aid, he did so, and arrived just at the most critical time. Col. Baum having been mortally wounded, and his troops broken and flying, the militia, under the impression that the battle was over, had dispersed in every direction in search of plunder, when Col. Breymen, who had been sent to Baum's relief, arrived on the ground. Soon after Warner arrived, and at a glance saw the peril of our troops, and gave the word to "Close!" when, like an eagle swooping to its prey, so he and his Green Mountain Boys came down on the enemy, and scattered them like dust before the wind. Night closing in favored the escape of the enemy, but they lost 207 killed and about 700 prisoners. Everest received the public thanks of Warner for the bravery of himself and men. After the capture of Burgoyne, Everest obtained a furlough, with the intention of visiting Addison to look after his father's property, — his father having gone back to Connecticut with his family. Not knowing how matters stood in that section, he approached warily, keeping on the highlands between Otter Creek and the lake, intending to strike the settlement at Vergennes, and then turn back to Addison. Arriving at the Falls at dark, he kindled a fire and lay down. About midnight ho was awoke by the war-whoop, and found himself a prisoner to a party of Indians that were on their way to Lake Memphramagog, to attend a council of most of the tribes of Canada, New York, and New England. He suffered much from the thongs with which he was bound, at the first, but understanding the nature of the Indians very well, he so gained their confidence, that they showed him more leniency afterwards. On the breaking up of the council he was brought back to the western shore of Lake Champlain, near Whallons Bay, where they encamped for the winter. He had been pondering in his mind for a long time various plans for escape, but concluded to wait until the lake was frozen. It was now December, and the lake had been frozen some two or three days, the ice as smooth as glass; the sun shone out quite pleasantly, and the air was comfortable. The Indians prepared for a frolic on the ice; many of them had skates and were very good skaters. Everest asked to be permitted to go down and see the sport, as he had never seen any one skate; they gave him leave to go, two or three evidently keeping an eye on him. He expressed his wonder and delight at their performances, so naturally that all suspicion was lulled. After a time, when the Indians began to be tired, and many were taking off their skates, he asked a young Indian who had just taken off a very fine pair, to let him try and skate. This the Indian readily consented to, expecting to have sport out of the white man's falls and awkwardness. Everest put on the skates, got up, and no sooner up than down he came, striking heavily on the ice; and again he essayed to stand and down he fell, and so continued to play the novice until all the Indians had come in from outside on the lake. He had contrived to stumble and work his way some 15 or 20 rods from the nearest, when he turned and skated a rod or two towards them, and partly falling he got on his knees, and begun to fix and tighten his skates. This being done, he rose, and striking a few strokes towards the eastern shore, he bent to his work, giving, as he leaned forward, a few insulting slaps to denote that he was off. With a whoop and a yell of rage, the Indians that had on their skates started in pursuit. He soon saw that none could overtake him, and felt quite confident of his escape. After getting more than half across the lake, and the ice behind him covered with Indians, he looked toward the east shore and saw two Indians coming round a point directly in front of him. This did not alarm him, for he turned his course directly up the lake. Again he looked and saw his pursuers (excepting two of their best skaters, who followed directly in his track) had spread themselves in a line from shore to shore. He did not at first understand it, but after having passed up the lake about three miles, he came suddenly upon one of
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those immense cracks or fissures in the ice that so frequently occur when the ice is glare. It ran in the form of a semicircle from shore to shore, the arch in the centre and up the lake. He saw he was in a trap. The Indians on his flanks had already reached the crack, and were coming down towards the middle. He flew along the edge of the crack, but no place that seemed possible for human power to leap was there. But the enemy were close upon him; he took a short run backward, and then shooting forward like lightning, with every nerve strained, he took the leap, and just reached the farther side. None of the Indians dared to follow. Finding snow on the ice at Panton, he left it, and made good his way to his regiment. He commanded the fort at Rutland during the summer of 1778. Carleton having come down the lake in the fall of this year, undertook some repairs at Crown Point. The Americans wished to obtain some certain information in regard to it. Everest was asked to go. He was bold, active, and well acquainted with the locality. He went. Doffing his uniform, he procured a tory dress, (gray,) and boldly entered the garrison and offered his services as a workman. He was set to tend masons, and made himself very acceptable by his industry. He had acquired about all the information he wanted, and would have left in a day or two, when, as ill-fortune would have it, a man by the name of Benedict, also an early settler in Addison, but who espoused the British cause, came into the fort, saw Everest and knew him, but Everest did not see Benedict. Benedict gave notice to the officer in command that one of his men was a spy, a lieutenant in the American army, and before Everest was aware that he was suspected, he was arrested, thrown into prison, and there kept for nine days. Major Carleton, in the mean time, had collected 39 men and boys as prisoners, and most of them neighbors and acquaintances of Everest, concluded to take Everest to Canada before he was tried, and ordered him on board the vessel just ready to sail for Canada. On hoard this vessel was Kellogg, Spalding, his younger brother Joseph, and other of his neighbors. It was now the latter part of November; a severe storm from the northeast came on, sleet and snow, with the wind blowing furiously. The vessel had run up to Ticonderoga to take on board some freight. During the day Everest had bribed one of the sailors to bring on board a bottle of liquor, which was secreted by Everest. At sunset the vessel was taken into the middle of the lake and anchored there. The night was very wild and tempestuous. At the solicitation of the prisoners, the captain had ordered a tent pitched on deck, to shield them from the storm. Everest now proposed to his fellow-prisoners to try to escape. They were anchored about half a mile north of the bridge that crossed the lake at that place, and he proposed to invite the sentry to take a drink or two out of the bottle and shelter themselves from the storm, whilst they should watch their opportunity and let themselves into the lake and swim to the bridge. Only two dared to think of trying it. When every thing was quiet, Everest gave the sentry a drink out of the bottle, and in a little while asked him to come under the tents and have another glass. This was complied with; and in a short time Everest, saying "What a storm it is," went out as if to take a look. He took off his clothing and tied it about his head, let himself down into the water near the stern, and struck out for the bridge. It almost made him cry out aloud when he first went into the water, it was so piercing cold. Spalding followed next, but the water was so cold when he touched it, that he shrank back and crawled on board again. No other one attempted it. He succeeded in reaching the bridge, on which he crawled, and where, before he could dress himself, he came near perishing, being much colder than in the water. Seeing and hearing nothing of his companions, he concluded they had not started, or perished in the attempt. There was a party of British on the east shore at the end of the bridge, and Indians at the west end. Everest thought he could pass the Indians the best. His dress was gray, the tory uniform, and he resolved to make the Indians think he came from the British encampment, and was on his way with special orders; but just before reaching the shore, and where a quantity of goods had been piled ready for shipping, and so covering the bridge that there was only a very narrow pass, stood or rather leaned a sentinel. Everest looked about for a stick or some weapon, but could find nothing. He recollected he had a razor in his pocket, and opening it, approached very cautiously. He saw the man was asleep. With his razor ready, and his face towards the sleeper, he passed within six inches of him, ready, if the man stirred, to cut his throat. He passed the Indian camp without suspicion on their part, but soon after fell into one of the ditches of the fort, getting thoroughly wet. He now took a northwest course for about four or five miles, and came upon a fire where a party of Indians had camped the day before. After he had satisfied himself that no one was lurking in the neighborhood, he came to the fire, built a good one, and warmed himself and thoroughly dried his clothes. Just before daybreak the storm ceased, the moon came out, and he started north, keeping along the range of mountains. About sunrise he came to Put's Creek; here he stopped and rested awhile; and then keeping back on the hills, yet still in sight of the lake, until he came to Webster's, an old acquaintance, who lived where Cole's Mills now are, (about four miles north of Fort Henry.) Webster was in the woods chopping when Everest came to him. They started to go down to the house, but on coming into the clearing they saw the British fleet coming down the lake, with a very light breeze. Everest immediately went
back and secreted himself in the woods; — Webster carried him some food; for he had eaten nothing for twenty-four hours. Webster agreed to keep a look out until after dark, and when the coast was clear to come to the door and chop a few sticks of wood, and whistle a tune agreed upon. The fleet anchored right opposite Webster's, and when all was quiet, at the signal, Everest came out. Webster let him have his canoe, and Everest giving the fleet a wide berth, landed safely on the east shore, and made his way to Castleton. He was afterwards taken prisoner by seven lndians, but escaped the next day. After the war he went to Connecticut, and moved his mother and the younger children up to Pawlet, his father having died previously. He resided here some two or three years, and was married. Soon after they came back on to the old farm in Addison, where some of his descendants now live. He died at a good old age, a member of the Baptist church, and much respected.
GENERAL DAVID WHITNEY
came into Addison soon after the close of the Revolution, and settled on the farm previously owned by Kellogg. He afterwards removed to the farm on the north bank of Ward's Creek, where he lived until a few years previous to his death, when he moved to Bridport, where he died May 10, 1850, at the age of 93. He was a member of the Constitutional Conventions of 1793, 1814, '36, and '43; represented Addison in 1790, '92, 93, '97, '98, 1808 to 1815, and '24. He was a shrewd politician, and always one of the leading men in the town; possessed considerable conversational powers, spiced with a quiet vein of humor. I recollect his account of having the lake fever soon after he came into town, and as it illustrates the practice of the day, I give it. It was whilst he lived on the Kellogg farm, a few rods from where J. W. Strong's house now stands. He was taken very sick, — pulse bounding, eyes bloodshot and starting from their sockets, the blood coursing through his veins like liquid fire. The doctor was sent for; on arriving, ordered every window and door closed, although it was in the hottest of dog days, — cold water forbidden, warm drinks ordered. Thus days and nights of intolerable suffering, went by, and when he begged for just one drop of water, it was denied. One night two neighbors, weary and tired from the harvest field, came in to watch through the night. One of them soon dropped off to sleep; the other, more enduring, still kept watch. At midnight, after giving the General his medicine, he brought in a pail of water, fresh from the well. How quick the sick man would have the wealth of the Indies for one draught of that sparkling water. Could he not by stratagem secure it? He feigned sleep; and the tired man, fixing himself as comfortable as possible, was soon in a sound sleep. Whitney now crawled from the bed on his hands and knees, and made his way to the pail. With what eagerness he clutched the cup and drained it, draught after draught. He then wished he could breathe a little fresh air, it was so stifling where he was. The man still slept; he opened the door. How still and quiet every thing lay in the moonlight. The dew on the grass sparkling like diamonds — the chirp of the cricket alone broke the silence. How delicious was the night-wind, as it fanned his fevered cheek and burning brow. The idea of escape from his prison, as he regarded it, presented itself, and instantly he started, crossing the road and through a thicket hedge that grew beside the fence, into a meadow, and plunging down amid the tall wet grass, he clapped his hands for joy, as he rolled from side to side. But now the fever is upon him; the fire is quenched, and his strength is gone. He cannot rise. The watchers have missed him. They shout his name. He tries to answer, but is too weak. They find and carry him to the house, and in alarm run for the doctor. He does not get there until morning. A quiet, refreshing sleep has removed all symptoms of fever. The doctor would give him pill and potion, but the General would none of it, and told him that he had got a new doctor, old Dame Nature, who seemed to understand the case altogether the best, and he should trust to her. Returning health showed his judgment in choosing. Ague and fever, and bilious intermittents, prevailed extremely in the early settlement of the town, but for quite a number of years little or none has been known.
was among the early settlers of the town. He built the first brick house in the county, in which H. Crane, Esq., now lives. It was kept as a public house; the courts of the county were held here for several years. Loyal Case, a son of his, was sheriff for several years. A daughter of his married the Hon. Horatio Seymour, of Middlebury.
was one of the early proprietors of the town, and a large land-owner and speculator. He built the old tavern stand at Chimney Point, the frame of which is now enclosed in the brick building of H. Barnes, Jr.
came into town previous to the Revolution. On the breaking out of the war he sided with the Crown. After the peace, he acquiesced in the Government, and took the oath of allegiance, and became a warm supporter of our free institutions.
14 VERMONT HISTORICAL MAGAZINE.
MAJOR T. WOODFORD
was a soldier in the Revolution, and died in ——, on the farm where he had long lived, now owned by J. W. Smith. One of his daughters married Rev. Justus Hough, first settled minister in the Congregational church in Addison, and first principal in the county Grammar school. Another daughter married Rev. Mr. Messer, for a long time pastor of the Congregational church in Shoreham.
was another old Revolutionary patriot. He served during nearly the whole war.
REV. SYLVANUS CHAPIN
was also an old pensioner. He preached for the Congregational church at different times for many years, and was the founder of the Congregational church in Moriah, and preached to them for very little pay for a long time. He was simple in his dress and living, but his purse was always open to promote the cause of God, whether of his peculiar denomination or not, and he will be long remembered for his benevolence, his many eccentricities, and keen wit. A young man with a good deal of pomposity, proclaiming his infidel belief, among other things stated that man was a mere machine. Chapin, who was sitting by, said, "So, young man, you think you are nothing but a machine." "Yes, and I can prove it." Chapin replied, "A great bellows, I suppose. Ah, it needs no proof, it is evident you are right!" Roars of laughter followed, and the young fellow was ever after glad to keep his infidelity to himself, when Father Chapin was about. Mr. Chapin died in 18—, at the age of ——.
E. C. WINES, DD., LL.D.
ENOCH COBB WINES, — born at Hanover, N. J., fitted at Castleton Academy, and graduated at Middlebury College, 1827, — was Professor of Mathematics in the U. S. Navy two and a half years; five years Principal of the Edgehill School, Princeton, N. J.; five years Professor of Mental, Moral, and Political Philosophy, in the Central High School, Philadelphia, Penn.; five years Principal of the Oakland School, Burlington, N. J. ; preached in Cornwall about a year ; in East Hampton, L. I., three and a half years.
[Extract from a letter of President Wines.]
ST. LOUIS, Mo., Jan. 9, 1860.
I think the work proposed an important one, and the plan of it excellent. I hope that it will meet all the encouragement which such a work ought to receive.
You are mistaken about Addison being my native county. I was born in Hanover, New Jersey; but my father removed to Addison county, Vermont, when I was about seven years old. In addition to the items mentioned in the catalogue, to which you refer, I may state that I continued to serve as pastor of the church in East Hampton, Long Island, for a period of three and a half years, when I received and accepted an invitation to the Professorship of Greek in Washington College, Pennsylvania, in the fall of 1853. In connection with my professorship, I performed the duties of pastor to the Upper Ten-mile Church, a small congregation in the country. In July, 1859, I was called to the presidency of a new institution in this city, under the corporate title of the "City University of St. Louis." This call I accepted, and entered upon the duties of my new position in October last.
The list of my published works is as follows.
1. Two Years and a Half in the Navy, 2 vols. 12mo.
2. Hints on a System of Popular Education, 1 vol. 12mo.
3. How shall I govern my School ? 1 vol. 12mo.
4. Letters to School-Children, 1 vol. 16mo.
5. A Trip to Boston, 1 vol. 12mo.
6. A Peep at China, in Mr. Dunn's Chinese Collection, 1 vol. 8vo.
7. Commentaries on the Laws of the Ancient Hebrews, vol. 1, 8vo.
8. A Sermon on Adam and Christ.
9. A Sermon on a Prohibitory Liquor Law.
10. An Historical Discourse commemorative of the Upper Ten-mile Congregation.
11. A Farewell Sermon.
12. An Address before the Suffolk County Temperance Society, L. I.
13. Monthly Journal of Education.
14. An Essay on the Mode and Advantages of Studying the Classic Languages.
15. A Report on Normal Schools.
16. A Lecture on Education as a Source of Wealth.
17. Girard College: a Lecture before the American Institute of Instruction.
18. Numerous Contributions on Literary, Educational, Social, and Theological subjects, to the periodical literature of the day.
I received the honorary degree of D. D. from Middlebury College, in 1853, and that of LL. D. from Washington College, on retiring from the professorship, which I held there for six years.
E. C. WINES.
We owe Mr. Wines an apology for publishing an extract from his letter without leave-asking; but we so much value his opinion of the object and plan of our work, we wish to give others the benefit thereof.
POLITICAL CONDITION OF NAPLES.
THE CONCLUSION OF LECTURE ON THE SUBJECT
OF NAPLES AND ITS ENVIRONS.
One word on the political condition of Naples, and I have done. I have not brought with me from the shores of Europe the conclusions to
which I once listened from the lips of an eloquent divine, who, in the warmth of his admiration, scarcely stopped short of becoming the advocate and apologist of the tottering institutions and ancient abuses of European governments. I own that one of the greatest advantages of foreign travel consists in its tendency to obliterate national prejudices. I own that no folly can be greater, no prejudice narrower, than that of supposing that our own country is the limit of all that is wise in policy, noble in patriotism, and genérous in virtue. The intelligent traveller often meets with excellences, where he had expected blemishes, and finds cause of admiration, where he had looked for grounds of censure. He learns that eminent worth and virtue can and do flourish in the sterile and exhausted deserts of tyranny, as well as in the more genial and generous soil of freedom. But even charity has its limits, and to surrender the judgment on the altar of a false Iiberality, betrays a weak, rather than a magnanimous mind. Frolic, laughter, gayety, humor, are seen in the lower orders of the Neapolitan population, and might impress a superficial observer with the idea that they are happy. But as to those pleasures which belong to our intellectual and moral constitution, those enjoyments which spring from the well of knowledge, that high spiritual happiness which our nature thirsts for with intend desire, the lives of those people are well-nigh a blank.
Those who are willing to sink the rational in the animal nature, those who are fain to receive their opinions by authority, and to have fetters of iron put upon thought and speech, — those, even, who are content to limit their pleasures to pictures, statues, and operas, and to gazing on palaces and cathedrals resplendent with gems, gold, marbles and mosaics, can get along well enough. But as for those generous spirits — and thank God, there are many such in Naples — who desire to rise to the full dignity of their nature, and the free enjoyment of their rights, their life is spent in secret sighs and unavailing wishes; and the labors of Sysiphus, endless but useless, seem no unapt emblem of the struggles with which their bosoms are familiar. And when I recall the burning words of indignation against their tyrants, which I have heard from their lips, and the ardent aspirations for liberty with which I have seen their bosoms heave, I can but exclaim, with a fervent emotion of gratitude to God, — Happy, proud America! land of my birth and home of my heart! Though no Virgil or Tasso has married thy mountains, thy valleys, and thy streams to immortal verse, though no patrician palaces or royal galleries adorn thy soil, though the splendor of courts is unknown to thy plebeian yeomanry, yet I would not exchange thy democratic rudeness, thy free heart, and thy home-bred virtues, for all that Europe boasts of ancestral dignity and modern magnificence.
E. C. WINES.
EXTRACT PROM A POEM DELIVERED AT VERGENNES.
THEIR plebeian grandsire in an easy chair
So quiet sits, you'd scarce observe him there;
His simple mind recurs to olden time,
E'er Fashion's code had labor made a crime.
He hears proscribed the man who daily toils,
His stagnant blood with youthful vigor boils;
A straggling tear bedews his aged face;
He weeps, — 'tis for his own degenerate race.
His stricken heart for sympathetic friends
Precedes his limbs, the garret stairs ascends;
Slow move his limbs; bereft of youthful skill,
Slowly they hear and slow obey his will;
His noisy staff wakes echoes all around;
He heeds it not, — he's rapt in thought profound;
With snail-like step he climbs the garret stairs,
His trusty staff the burden mostly bears.
Kind friends, ascend the garret now with me,
And listen to his lonely monody.
By dust and cobwebs partially concealed,
A rustic heap of ancient tools revealed;
Yet o'er the heap again the good man weeps,
Again the tears bedew his aged cheeks:—
"Friends of my youth, 'tis fitting Time should trace
His broad, deep lines across my aged face;
'Tis also fit, as there you useless lie,
Signs of decay I now in you descry.
No boaster's fame I crave — you know it well;
If speech were granted, each would freely tell,
To score the oak, or fell the mighty pine,
No arm excelled this shrunken arm of mine,
My daily toil secured me daily health,
And led at length to competence and wealth;
My children now (I tell it, though, with shame)
Ignore the source from whence their fortune came.
When pampered youth maliciously conspire,
Insult the calling of their plainer sire,
My stagnant blood with youthful vigor boils,
My sympathies are with the man who toils.
I blame you not, my much beloved tools,
The thrift you won has made my children fools.
No youthful cheek should ever blanch with shame,
No son should blush to hear his parent's name,
Or deem it worthy of a passing note,
Should it be said he sponged and made a coat;
All honest men who live by honest trade,
Should own with pride whate'er their hands have made;
Whate'er they do, should never blush to tell,
Provided always that they do it well.
LEONARD C. THORN.
REMINISCENSES OF ADDISON.
IT was a mild October afternoon as we were driven slowly down the lake street from Panton to Addison, five to eight miles. We had heard of the valley of the Champlain; but it is one thing to read of Beulah, and another to walk through her borders of beauty. On the left of the smooth and excellent highway, handsome rural residences held the most charming sites, to almost every one of which we gave the palm in succession as we passed by; now to this quaint cottage, that with modest pretensions peeped out from 'mid an orchard of red-ripe fruitage; next to one that crowned a moderate elevation, overlooking a little bend or cove in the lake, where we saw the wreck of an old boat, half sunken in the water; and our young driver told, in a manly, in‑
16 VERMONT HISTORICAL MAGAZINE.
teresting style, of three boats wrecked there one stormy night. Thus on our left lay one panorama of changing loveliness, while on the right, Champlain — lake of bright waters — heaved and swelled gently in toward the fair shore, now hidden from view by skirting trees, or slight swells of land, which our road soon came round, and hugged more closely to the pebbly shore, wound along near aside a pleasing way. This was one of the journeys that pay, where earth and air and water give unmeasured recompense; where one feels not the feather-weight of care, but luxuriates in the calm, rich gladness that stirs the boughs of the goodly trees, sings in the low murmurs of the lake-waves, looks down from the soft Indian summer sky, and maps the whole beautiful landscape. It was one of the afternoons in a lifetime, when one is satisfied with earth as it is, — when the augury of hope prophesies in the heart: "The human mind takes color and tone by what it feeds upon. Where the love of the beautiful thus predominates and thus is cherished, — where art skilfully joins handiwork with nature, — your mission will be welcomed." And we found the spontaneous presentiment happy certainty. Our first night, we slept in the old Strong mansion, where five generations of the Strong family have been born; well may they who dwell here feel an honest pride in the venerable mansion, — substantial still, built in the days when carpenters did work upon honor. On the morrow, we surveyed, with reverential admiration, the spacious olden hall, with its broad stairway of antique banisters, the massive doors and ancient mouldings, and at the rear window, gazed out upon one of the finest lake-views in the country. At East Addison we also found cordial welcome, and particularly appreciated the excellent terra firma, the veritable superior land,* and the sleek cattle and horses that grazed in the rich meadows.
We looked upon Addison, and remembered she was once a county town, with reasonable expectations of becoming one of the first business towns in the State; we found her with only a weekly or semi-weekly mail; but we also found an entertainment and free stages that more than made amends for lack of public conveyance; and, must confess we like Addison better as she is. To us, this town, where the first Vermont settlement was made, is sacred ground. It is a pleasant truth, that, secluded from the taint of a large and changing population, shut out from the evil that destroys, rich in beauty, rich in soil, rich in flocks and herds, she retains what is most praiseworthy of all, much of her primitive simplicity of manners, unaffected courtesy, and whole-hearted hospitality.
* Soil generally marl or clay, and productive. The magnetic oxide of iron is found here in small octædric crystals in argillite, and also the sulphuret of iron. — Thompson.