The Project Gutenberg eBook of Kentucky in American Letters, 1784-1912. Vol. 1 of 2

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Title: Kentucky in American Letters, 1784-1912. Vol. 1 of 2

Author: John Wilson Townsend

Author of introduction, etc.: James Lane Allen

Release date: July 6, 2012 [eBook #39406]
Most recently updated: December 1, 2013

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Brian Sogard, Douglas L. Alley, III and the
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Book Cover



Richard Hickman Menefee. 1907
Kentuckians in History and Literature. 1907
The Life of James Francis Leonard. 1909
Kentucky: Mother of Governors. 1910
Lore of the Meadowland. 1911









Of this edition one thousand sets have been printed, of which this is number


Copyright 1913
By The Torch Press
Published September 1913

Printer's Mark

To My Mother


Mr. Townsend's fellow countrymen must feel themselves to be put under a beautiful obligation to him by his work entitled Kentucky in American Letters. He has thus fenced off for the lovers of New World literature a well watered bluegrass pasture of prose and verse, which they may enter and range through according to their appetites for its peculiar green provender and their thirst for the limestone spring. This strip of pasture is a hundred years long; its breadth may not be politely questioned!

For the backward-looking and for the forward-looking students of American literature, not its merely browsing readers, he has wrought a service of larger and more lasting account. Whether his patiently done and richly crowned work be the first of its class and kind, there is slight need to consider here: fitly enough it might be a pioneer, a path-blazer, as coming from the land of pioneers, path-blazers.

But whether or not other works of like character be already in the field of national observation, it is inevitable that many others soon will be. There must in time and in the natural course of events come about a complete marshalling of the American commonwealths, especially of the older American commonwealths, attended each by its women and men of letters; with the final result that the entire pageant of our literary creativeness as a people[Pg viii] will thus be exhibited and reviewed within those barriers and divisions, which from the beginning have constituted the peculiar genius of our civilization.

When this has been done, when the States have severally made their profoundly significant showing, when the evidence up to some century mark or half-century mark is all presented, then for the first time we, as a reading and thoughtful self-studying people, may for the first time be advanced to the position of beginning to understand what as a whole our cis-Atlantic branch of English literature really is.

Thus Mr. Townsend's work and the work of his fellow-craftsmen are all stations on the long road but the right road. They are aids to the marshalling of the American commonwealths at a great meeting-point of the higher influences of our nation.

Now, already American literature has long been a subject in regard to which a library of books has been written. The authors of by far the most of these books are themselves Americans, and they have thus looked at our literature and at our civilization from within; the authors of the rest are foreigners who have investigated and philosophized from the outside. Altogether, native and foreign, they have approached their theme from divergent directions, with diverse aims, and under the influence of deep differences in their critical methods and in their own natures. But so far as the writer of these words is aware, no one of them either native or foreign has ever set about the study of American literature, enlightened with the only solvent principle that can ever furnish its solution.

[Pg ix]

That solvent principle is contained within a single proposition. That single proposition is the one upon which our forefathers deliberately chose to found the civilization of the Anglo-Saxon race in the New World: that it should not be a civilization of States which were not a Nation; that it should not be the civilization of a nation without states; but that it should be a Nation of States.

Now, if any man aspires to draw from American literature the philosophy of its traits, if he sets it as the goal of his wisdom to explain its breadth and its narrowness, its plenty here and its lack there, its color in one place and its pallor in another, let him go back to the will of the fathers in the foundation of the Republic and find the explanation of our literature at the basis of our whole civilization. He will never find it anywhere else. He will find it there as he there finds the origin of our system of government, of our system of industry, of our system of political barriers, of our system of education: in the entire nature of our institutions as derived and unfolded from the idea that we should be a nation of states. Our literature—our novels and our poetry—have been as rigorously included in this development as all the other elements of our life.

For the first time in this way he may come to see a great light; and with that light shining about him he may be prepared to write the first history of American literature.

None has yet been written.

James Lane Allan Signature

[Pg x]
[Pg xi]



What is a Kentucky book, is the one great question this work has elicited. Surely a Kentucky book is one written by a Kentuckian about Kentucky or Kentuckians and printed in Kentucky; surely it is a book written by a Kentuckian upon any subject under the sun, and published in any clime; surely it is one written in Kentucky by a citizen of any other state or country, regardless of the subject or place of publication, for, "in general, I have regarded the birthplace of a piece of literature more important than that of the author." But is a book, though treating of Kentucky or Kentuckians, regardless of its place of publication, whose author was not born in, nor for any appreciable period resided in, this state, entitled to be properly classified as a Kentucky work? The writer has responded in the negative to this question in the present work.

There have been several noted American authors who have written volumes about Kentucky or Kentuckians, and they themselves were not natives of this state, nor resided within its confines. Those early Western travelers rarely omitted Kentucky from their journeys. The first of them, F. A. Michaux, published his famous Travels to the West of the Alleghany Mountains, in the States of Ohio, Kentucky, and Tennessee, at London, in 1805; two years later F. Cuming's Tour to the Western Country, through Ohio and Kentucky, was printed at Pittsburg; and in 1817 John Bradbury got out the first edition of his now noted Travels in the Interior of America, at London.[Pg xii] Bradbury died in 1823 and to-day lies buried in the cemetery at Middletown, Kentucky, near Louisville. George W. Ogden's Letters from the West (New Bedford, 1823); W. Bullock's Sketch of a Journey through the Western States (London, 1827); and Tilly Buttrick's Voyages, Travels, and Discoveries (Boston, 1831), round out fairly well that group of Scotchmen, Englishmen, New Englanders, and what not, who found many interesting things in Kentucky a hundred years and more ago. Ogden spent two summers in Kentucky; Bullock owned a river-side tract near Ludlow, Kentucky, and old Bradbury sleeps in a quiet Kentucky hamlet, but neither of them may be properly classified as a real Kentuckian.

The Beauchamp-Sharp tragedy of 1825 was the one Kentucky event that kindled the imaginations of more alien writers than any other happening in our history. Edgar Allan Poe, William Gilmore Simms, Charles Fenno Hoffman, G. P. R. James, James Hall, and several others, wrote plays, novels, and poems based upon this tragedy. In 1832 James Kirke Paulding, the friend of Washington Irving, published one of the earliest Kentucky romances, entitled Westward Ho! which name he got from the old Elizabethan drama of John Webster and Thomas Dekker. Two years after the appearance of Paulding's tale, William A. Caruthers, the Virginia novelist, printed The Kentuckian in New York; and in the same year Thomas Chandler Haliburton ("Sam Slick"), put forth one of his earliest works, Kentucky, a Tale (London, 1834). In 1845 Charles Winterfield's My First Days With the Rangers, appeared, to be followed the next year by William T. Porter's A Quarter Race in Kentucky.

These writers hardly did more than point the way to Kentucky for Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe, whose world-famous[Pg xiii] novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin (Boston, 1852), was set against a background of slave-holding Kentucky. This is the most famous example our literature affords of a writer of another state or country coming to Kentucky for the materials out of which to build a book.

In 1860 David Ross Locke, the Ohio journalist and satirist, discovered the Rev. Petroleum V. Nasby, postmaster at "Confedrit X Roads, Kentucky," and his political satires on Kentucky, the Nasby Letters, tickled the readers of his paper, The Toledo Blade, through many years. These alleged communications from poor Petroleum may be read to-day in Locke's Swingin' Round the Cirkel, and Ekkoes from Kentucky. J. G. Marshall's The Outlaw Brothers (New York, 1864); Miss Martha Remick's Millicent Halford: a Tale of the Dark Days of Kentucky in the year 1861 (Boston, 1865); two novels by Edward Willett, entitled Kentucky Border Foes, and Old Honesty: a Tale of the Early Days of Kentucky, both of which were issued in the late sixties; Constance F. Woolson's Two Women (New York, 1877), and Mrs. Anna Bowman Dodd's story, Glorinda (Boston, 1888), concludes the group of writers of the comparatively modern school who did not linger long in the "meadowland," but who found it good literary soil, and helped themselves accordingly.

In recent years Mr. Winston Churchill's The Crossing, Dr. James Ball Naylor's The Kentuckian, Mr. Augustus Thomas's The Witching Hour, and the Kentucky lyrics of Mrs. Alice Williams Brotherton, the Ohio poet, have drawn fresh attention to Kentucky as a background for literary productions, although they are written by those who cannot qualify as Kentuckians. But to claim any of these writers for the Commonwealth, would be to make one's self absurd. Dr. Naylor's lines upon this point are apropos:

[Pg xiv]

I must admit—although it hurts!—
That I was born unlucky;
I've never, literally, had
A home in Old Kentucky.
And yet I feel should wayward Chance
Direct my steps to roam there,
I'd meet you all and greet you all—
And find myself at home there!

As has already been indicated, the good physician-poet is not by any manner of means the only alien bard who has remembered Kentucky in his work. No less a poet than the great Sir Walter Scott celebrated Kentucky in Marmion—the State's first appearance in English poetry. The passage may be found near the close of the ninth stanza in the third canto. Lord Marmion and his followers have ridden "the livelong day," and are now quartered at a well-known Scottish hostelry. They have all eaten and drunk until they are on the borderland of dreams when their leader, seeing their condition,

... called upon a squire:—
"Fitz-Eustace, know'st thou not some lay,
To speed the lingering night away?
We slumber by the fire."—
"So please you," thus the youth rejoined
"Our choicest minstrel's left behind."

And while Fitz realizes that he cannot, in any degree, equal the famous singer to whom he has referred, he now further praises him, calls down curses on the cause that kept him from following Marmion, and ventures

"To sing his favourite roundelay."
A mellow voice Fitz-Eustace had,
[Pg xv] The air he chose was wild and sad;
Such have I heard, in Scottish land,
Rise from the busy harvest band,
When falls before the mountaineer,
On lowland plains, the ripened ear.
Now one shrill voice the notes prolong,
Now a wild chorus swells the song:
Oft have I listened, and stood still,
As it came soften'd up the hill,
And deem'd it the lament of men
Who languish'd for their native glen;
And thought how sad would be such sound,
On Susquehannah's swampy ground,
Kentucky's wood-encumber'd brake,
Or wild Ontario's boundless lake,
Where heart-sick exiles, in the strain,
Recall'd fair Scotland's hills again!

After Sir Walter, the next English poet to tell the world of Kentucky and one of her sons, was George Gordon (Lord) Byron. His references are found in the eighth canto and the sixty-first to the sixty-seventh stanzas inclusive, of Don Juan. This poem was begun in 1819 and published, several cantos at a time, until the final sixteenth appeared in 1824. The sixty-first stanza will serve our purpose.

Of all men, saving Sylla, the man-slayer,
Who passes for in life and death most lucky,
Of the greatest names which in our faces stare,
The General Boone, back-woodsman of Kentucky,
Was happiest amongst mortals anywhere;
For killing nothing but a bear or buck, he
Enjoy'd the lonely, vigorous, harmless days
Of his old age in wilds of deepest maze.

In 1827 Alfred Tennyson, with his brother Charles, published a slender sheaf of juvenile verses, entitled Poems By Two Brothers. On Sublimity contains eleven[Pg xvi] stanzas of ten lines each. The poet disdains "vales in tenderest green," and asks for "the wild cascade, the rugged scene," the sea, the mountains, dark cathedrals, storms, "Niagara's flood of matchless might," and Mammoth Cave.

The hurricane fair earth to darkness changing,
Kentucky's chambers of eternal gloom,[1]
The swift-pac'd columns of the desert ranging
Th' uneven waste, the violent Simoom
The snow-clad peaks, stupendous Gungo-tree!
Whence springs the hallow'd Jumna's echoing tide,
Hear Cotopaxi's cloud-capt majesty,
Enormous Chimborazo's naked pride,
The dizzy Cape of winds that cleaves the sky,
Whence we look down into eternity,
The pillar'd cave of Morven's giant king
The Yanar, and the Geyser's boiling fountain,
The deep volcano's inward murmuring,
The shadowy Colossus of the mountain;
Antiparos, where sun-beams never enter;
Loud Stromboli, amid the quaking isles;
The terrible Maelstroom, around his centre
Wheeling his circuit of unnumber'd miles:
These, these are sights and sounds that freeze the blood,
Yet charm the awe-struck soul which doats on solitude.

Tennyson was the third and last English poet of the nineteenth century to make mention of Kentucky in his works.

Much writing has been done by Kentuckians from the beginning until the present time, but most of what is usually termed literature is the work of the school of today. That much, however, of the early productions, especially the anonymous and fugitive poems, have been forever lost, may be gathered from a letter written to Edwin Bryant, editor of The Lexington Intelligencer, by[Pg xvii] an Ohio correspondent, which appeared in that paper in January, 1834, a part of which is as follows:

There were a vast number of rural and sentimental songs, sung by the hunters and pioneers, that, in this our day, to the present generation would be truly interesting. Would it not be wise for you, Messrs. Editors, to publish a note in your valuable paper, offering the "Poets' Corner," and save what you can of the fragments of "Olden Times?"... I know that there were many sentimental pieces—some written by a Mr. Bullock—many war songs; one on St. Clair's defeat; and there was a wonderful flow of poetical effusions on the first discovery of a settlement of Kentucky. There was a wooing song of the hunter—one stanza I can only repeat:

"I will plough and live, and you may knit and sowe,
And through the wild woods, I'll hunt the buffaloe!"

To many these things may appear as ... light as empty air, but look to the future, and you will at once discover the inquisitive mind will earnestly desire to look into such matters and things.

The pity is, this admonition passed unheeded by Bryant and his contemporaries, and much that "the inquisitive mind" would revel in to-day, was thus lost. The most famous, however, of the pioneer songs that the above quoted writer probably had in mind, The Hunters of Kentucky, the celebrated ballad of the Battle of New Orleans, has come down to us, but it was written by the alien hand of Samuel Woodworth, who achieved a double triumph over oblivion by also writing The Old Oaken Bucket. And were other "wooing songs of the hunter" extant, we would certainly discover that many of them were done by non-Kentuckians. Even Kentucky Belle, ballad of Morgan and his men, was the work of Constance Fenimore Woolson, the famous author of Anne.

In recent years the ballads of the Kentucky mountains have been investigated by a group of scholars, and Dr.[Pg xviii] Hubert Gibson Shearin will shortly publish a collection of them. It is impossible to discuss them at this time; and as nearly all of them are offshoots of the old English ballads and Scottish songs, done over by their Kentucky descendants, the ever-recurring question: "Are they Kentucky productions?" will not down.



Kentucky has failed to produce and maintain a respectable literary magazine for any considerable length of time. Many magazines have been born in Kentucky with high hopes, and a few of them have braved the storms for a number of years, but all of them have gone the way of all the earth after a pathetic struggle for existence.

The reasons for this lie not far afield: the leading magazines and periodicals of the east through the immensity of their circulation secure that large patronage necessary to maintain a publication conducted on a generous basis, ensuring variety and excellence. Experience has long since demonstrated even to the bravest of the inland publishers that the point of distribution is the controlling factor in success. The means of transportation which have so miraculously improved, have annihilated distance and along with it to no small extent the Western and Southern periodical of literary flavor. The opulent publications are enabled through their very prosperity to command contributors not to be approached by a periodical circumscribed in means and constituency. Again, the Kentucky magazines have all along made the fatal mistake of truckling to dead prejudices and sectionalism. The material and the moulders have long been with us, but the wide popular support, which after all is the first essential, has failed to materialise, and it may[Pg xix] be regretfully apprehended that it now lies as far away as ever.

The first magazine issued in Kentucky or the West was The Medley, or Monthly Miscellany, for the year 1803, which was edited and published by Daniel Bradford, son of old John Bradford, the editor of The Kentucky Gazette. The Medley lived through the year of 1803, but in January, 1804, Editor Bradford announced that he was compelled, from lack of appreciation, to abandon its publication. The twelve parts were bound for those of the subscribers who cared to have them made into a single volume, and probably not more than two copies are extant to-day. The Medley's literary merit was not impressive, and its death can only be deplored because it happened to be the first Western magazine.

The Almoner, a religious periodical, the first issue of which was dated from Lexington, April, 1814, and which died a twelvemonth later, was published by Thomas T. Skillman, the pioneer printer. Its account of the preacher, John Poage Campbell, and his many theological works, is about all one finds of interest in it.

William Gibbes Hunt, a Harvard man, who later took a degree from Transylvania University, established The Western Review at Lexington, in August, 1819, and this was the first literary magazine in the West worthy the name. Hunt was a man of fine tastes, and he had a proper conception of what a magazine should be. He worked hard for two years, but in July, 1821,—the number for which month is notable as having contained the first draft of General William O. Butler's famous poem, The Boatman's Horn, which is there entitled The Boat Horn,—Hunt rehearsed the pathetic tale of the lack of support and appreciation for a Western magazine, and, without any expressed regret, entitled it his valedictory. He had survived twice as long as any of his predecessors,[Pg xx] and he probably felt that he had done fairly well, as he undoubtedly had. The four bound volumes of The Western Review may be read to-day with more than an historical interest. Hunt returned to his home in New England; and the only other thing of his that is preserved is An Address on the Principles of Masonry (Lexington, 1821), and a very excellent oration it is, too.

There were brave men after Hunt, however. The Literary Pamphleteer was born and died at Paris, Kentucky, in 1823; and in the following year Thomas T. Skillman established The Western Luminary at Lexington. This was a semi-religious journal, but its publication was shortly suspended. The Microscope seems to have been the first magazine published at Louisville, it being founded in 1824, but its life was ephemeral. Under a half a dozen different names, with many lapses between the miles, The Transylvanian, which Professor Thomas Johnson Matthews, of Transylvania University, established at Lexington in 1829, has survived until the present time. It is now the literary magazine of Transylvania University. Mr. James Lane Allen, Mr. Frank Waller Allen, and one or two other well-known Kentucky writers saw their earliest essays and stories first published in The Transylvanian. John Clark's Lexington Literary Journal, a twice-a-week affair, was founded in 1833; and the Louisville Literary News-Letter, edited by Edmund Flagg and issued by George D. Prentice, lived in the Kentucky metropolis from December, 1838, to November, 1840.

Far and away the most famous literary periodical ever published in Kentucky, was The Western Messenger, founded at Cincinnati in 1835, and removed to Louisville in April, 1836. James Freeman Clarke (1810-1888), the noted Boston Unitarian preacher and author, was editor, publisher, and agent of The Messenger while it was at[Pg xxi] Louisville; and he solicited subscriptions throughout Kentucky. Ralph Waldo Emerson first appeared as a poet in his friend Clarke's magazine. His Goodby Proud World, The Rhodora, The Humble Bee, and several of his other now noted poems, were printed for the first time in The Messenger. Clarke also published papers from the hands of Hawthorne, Oliver Wendell Holmes, William Ellery Channing, Margaret Fuller, and nearly all of the writers now grouped as the New England school. He printed a poem of John Keats, which had never been previously published, the manuscript of which was furnished by George Keats, brother of the poet, who lived at Louisville for many years. Clarke later wrote an interesting sketch of George Keats for his magazine. During parts of the four years he published The Messenger at Louisville he had as assistant editors Christopher P. Cranch and Samuel Osgood, now well-known names in American letters. Clarke returned to Boston in 1840, and The Messenger returned to Cincinnati, where it was suspended in April, 1841. "The periodical was an exotic," wrote William Henry Venable, "a Boston flower blooming in the Ohio Valley;" and this is the one-line history of it. Its like was never seen before, never since, and will never be seen again in the West.

Thirteen years after The Western Messenger left Louisville, The Western Literary Magazine, a monthly publication, was begun; and three years later, or in 1856, The Louisville Review, another monthly, was established. But the war clouds of civil strife were gradually gathering, and the endless pen scratching of the Kentucky magazinist was lost in the cannon's roar. Newspapers were the only things Kentuckians had time to peruse.

Since the war Kentucky periodicals have been, almost without exception, rather tame affairs. They have all been most mushroomish. A few of them may be singled[Pg xxii] out, such as The Southern Bivouac, which was conducted at Louisville for several years by General Basil W. Duke and Richard W. Knott; The Illustrated Kentuckian, founded at Lexington, in 1892; The Southern Magazine, of Louisville, published papers by Mr. Allen, stories by Mr. John Fox, Jr., and several other now well-known writers; and Charles J. O'Malley's Midland Review ran for some time. These are the comparatively recent Kentucky periodicals which have bloomed in a day and wilted with the earliest winter. The Register, official organ of the State Historical Society, is still being issued three times a year. It is unique among Kentucky magazines in that it is the only one that has had adequate financial support, which, however, comes to it in the form of a State appropriation. For the last twenty-five years The Courier-Journal, of Louisville, has devoted space in its Saturday edition to reviews of new books; and in recent years The Evening Post, also of Louisville, has maintained a similar department.

J. W. T.

Lexington, Kentucky
June 13, 1913

[Pg xxiii]


The last several years have been devoted to the collecting and classifying of Kentucky books and authors from Filson, in 1784, to Mr. Allen, in 1912. While the author has done other things, this has been his most serious business.

Of the more than a thousand Kentucky writers, one hundred and ninety-six, or those who achieved considerable reputation in their day and generation, or others to whom fame came late, are now discussed. The author hopes to publish within the next two or three years a Dictionary of Kentucky Writers, which will attempt to bring together in brief biographical and critical notes all of Kentucky's literary workers from the beginning until the present time. The crossroads poet is a most elusive, most diffident figure, but I shall do my best to bring him into the Dictionary that is to be.

I have received assistance from many quarters. Colonel Reuben T. Durrett, Dr. Henry A. Cottell, General Bennett H. Young, Colonel Robert M. Kelly, Mrs. Evelyn Snead Barnett, Mrs. Elvira Miller Slaughter, and Mr. George T. Settle, of Louisville, Kentucky, have aided me in many directions. Mr. George McCalla Spears, of Dallas, Texas, author of Dear Old Kentucky, and the owner of one of the best collections of Kentucky books ever gotten together, I have to thank for a catalogue of his library and a dozen informing letters. Judge James H. Mulligan, Miss Anna Totten, Mrs. Annie Gratz Clay, Miss Jo Peter, and Mr. James M. Roach, of Lexington, Kentucky, have loaned and given me many rare Kentucky items; to Mr. William Kavanaugh Doty, of Richmond,[Pg xxiv] Kentucky, Mrs. Daniel Henry Holmes, of Covington, Kentucky, Mrs. Lucien Beckner, of Winchester, Kentucky, Dr. Thomas E. Pickett, of Maysville, Kentucky, State Librarian Frank K. Kavanaugh, of Frankfort, Kentucky, Mr. Alexander Hill, and Miss Marian Prentice Piatt, of Cincinnati, Ohio, Mr. Henry Cleveland Wood, of Harrodsburg, Kentucky, Mr. Paul Weir, of Owensboro, Kentucky, Mr. Ingram Crockett, of Henderson, Kentucky, Mrs. Mary Addams Bayne, of Shelbyville, Kentucky, Miss Leigh Gordon Giltner, of Eminence, Kentucky, and Mrs. Caroline S. Valentine, of New Castle, Kentucky, the majority of whom are writers, I am doubly indebted for facts regarding their own work, as well as for what I now more especially thank them—information concerning other Kentucky writers.

Death found the two best friends, perhaps, this work had during the course of its preparation, when it took Charles J. O'Malley, the Kentucky poet and critic, and Jahu Dewitt Miller, the Philadelphia lecturer and bookman. Both of these men had just gotten into the spirit of the work when they died within a year of each other. O'Malley wrote the most illuminating letters concerning Kentucky authors it has been my good fortune to receive; Miller made the most gratifying and surprising additions to my collection of Kentuckiana, exceedingly scarce volumes and pamphlets which he alone seemed able to unearth from the old bookshops of the country. The memories of them both must be ever green with me and in this work.

I have to thank Mr. Allen for his very fine introduction. To have one's name associated with his is reward sufficient for the years of toil and sacrifice this work has demanded of its author.

[Pg xxv]


John Filson 1
The Air and Climate of Kentucky 2
Quadrupeds 3
Boone's First View of Kentucky 4
John Bradford 5
Notes on Kentucky. Section I 6
Matthew Lyon 8
Reply to John Randolph of Roanoke 9
Gilbert Imlay 11
The Flight of a Florid Lover 13
Adam Rankin 17
On the Extent of the Gospel Offer 18
Upon Marriage by License 18
Thomas Johnson 19
Extempore Grace 21
Danville 21
Kentucky 21
Hudson, wife-murderer 22
Parson Rice 22
The Poet's Epitaph 22
George Beck 23
Fifteenth Ode of Horace 24
Anacreon's Fifty-fifth Ode 25
Anacreon's First Ode 26
Humphrey Marshall 26
Primeval Kentucky 28
Stephen T. Badin 30
Epicedium 31
Charles Caldwell 34
General Greene's Early Life 35
Allan B. Magruder 37
Citizen Genet and Jefferson 38
Henry Clay 39[Pg xxvi]
Reply to John Randolph 42
Address to La Fayette 43
John J. Audubon 45
Indian Summer on the Ohio 48
Horace Holley 52
Mr. Clay and Col. Meade 53
Constantine S. Rafinesque 56
Geological Annals 58
Mann Butler 59
Pioneer Visitors 60
Zachary Taylor 62
A Letter to Henry Clay 63
Daniel Drake 65
Mayslick, Kentucky, in 1800 67
Mary A. Holley 69
Texas Women 70
John J. Crittenden 71
Eulogy upon Justice McKinley 72
John M. Harney 74
Echo and the Lover 76
The Wippowil 77
Sylphs Bathing 78
George Robertson 78
Anniversary Address 80
Early Struggles 80
Literary Fame 81
Shadrach Penn 82
The Coming of George D. Prentice 83
William O. Butler 84
The Boatman's Horn 86
Hew Ainslie 87
The Bourocks o' Bargeny 89
The Haughs o' Auld Kentuck 89
The Ingle Side 90
The Hint o' Hairst 91
James G. Birney 91
The No-Government Doctrines 93
Thomas Corwin 95[Pg xxvii]
The Mexican War 96
Henry B. Bascom 98
A Clergyman's View of Niagara 99
James T. Morehead 102
John Finley 103
Lewis Collins 104
Preface to the First Edition 105
Julia A. Tevis 107
The May Queen 108
Robert J. Breckinridge 112
Sanctification 113
Caroline L. Hentz 114
Beside the Long Moss Spring 115
John P. Durbin 117
Impressions of London 118
Fortunatus Cosby, Jr. 119
Fireside Fancies 120
Thomas F. Marshall 123
Temperance: an Address 124
Jefferson J. Polk 126
The Battle of the Boards 127
George D. Prentice 129
The Closing Year 131
On Revisiting Brown University 133
Paragraphs 135
Robert M. Bird 135
Nick of the Woods 137
John A. McClung 139
The Women of Bryant's Station 140
James O. Pattie 142
The Santa Fe Country 143
William F. Marvin 145
Epigram 146
The First Roses of Spring 146
Song 147
Elisha Bartlett 147
John Browdie of "Nicholas Nickleby" 148
Samuel D. Gross 150[Pg xxviii]
Kentucky 151
The Death of Henry Clay 152
Thomas H. Chivers 152
The Death of Alonzo 154
Georgia Waters 156
Jefferson Davis 156
From the Farewell Speech 158
William D. Gallagher 160
The Mothers of the West 162
Thomas H. Shreve 163
I Have No Wife 164
Ormsby M. Mitchel 166
Astronomical Evidences of God 167
Albert T. Bledsoe 169
Seven Crises Caused the Civil War 171
Richard H. Menefee 173
Kentucky: a Toast 174
George W. Cutter 176
The Song of Steam 177
Mary P. Shindler 179
The Faded Flower 180
Martin J. Spalding 181
A Bishop's Arrival 182
John W. Audubon 185
Los Angeles 186
Tulare Valley 186
Christmas in 'Frisco 187
Adrien E. Rouquette 187
Souvenir de Kentucky 189
Emily V. Mason 191
The Death of Lee 192
Edmund Flagg 194
The Ancient Mounds of the West 195
Catherine A. Warfield 197
Camilla Bouverie's Diary 198
A Pledge to Lee 199
J. Ross Browne 200
Lapdogs in Germany 201
Robert Morris 205[Pg xxix]
The Level and the Square 206
Amelia B. Welby 207
The Rainbow 209
On the Death of a Sister Poet 210
Charles W. Webber 211
Trouting on Jessup's River 212
Lewis J. Frazee 216
Havre 217
Theodore O'Hara 218
The Bivouac of the Dead 220
The Old Pioneer 223
Second Love 225
A Rollicking Rhyme 225
The Fame of William T. Barry 226
Sarah T. Bolton 228
Paddle Your Own Canoe 229
John C. Breckinridge 231
Henry Clay 232
James Weir, Sr. 234
Simon Kenton 235
Mary E. W. Betts 237
A Kentuckian Kneels to None but God 238
Reuben T. Durrett 239
La Salle: Discoverer of Louisville 241
Richard H. Collins 244
Preface to the Second Edition 245
Annie C. Ketchum 247
April Twenty-Sixth 248
Francis H. Underwood 250
Aloysius and Mr. Fenton 252
An Amazing Prophecy 254
Stephen C. Foster 255
My Old Kentucky Home, Good-Night 256
Zachariah F. Smith 258
Early Kentucky Doctors 259
John A. Broadus 261
Oxford University 263
Mary J. Holmes 265[Pg xxx]
The Schoolmaster 266
Rosa V. Jeffrey 269
A Glove 270
A Memory 271
Sallie R. Ford 272
Our Minister Marries 273
John E. Hatcher 276
Newspaper Paragraphs 277
William C. Watts 279
A Wedding and a Dance 280
J. Proctor Knott 282
From the Duluth Speech 283
George G. Vest 285
Jefferson's Passports to Immortality 286
Eulogy of the Dog 286
William P. Johnston 288
Battle of Shiloh—Sunday Morning 289
Will Wallace Harney 291
The Stab 292
J. Stoddard Johnston 292
"Captain Moll" 293
Julia S. Dinsmore 295
Love Among the Roses 295
Henry T. Stanton 297
The Moneyless Man 299
"A Mensá Et Thoro" 300
A Special Plea 301
Sweetheart 301
Sarah M. Piatt 303
In Clonmel Parish Churchyard 304
A Word with a Skylark 305
The Gift of Tears 306
Boyd Winchester 307
Lake Geneva 308
Thomas Green 310
The Conspirators 312
Forceythe Willson 313[Pg xxxi]
The Old Sergeant 314
W. C. P. Breckinridge 319
Is Not This the Carpenter's Son 321
Basil W. Duke 323
Morgan, the Man 324
Henry Watterson 325
Old London Town 327
Gilderoy W. Griffin 331
The Gypsies 332
John L. Spalding 334
An Ivory Paper-Knife 335
Nathaniel S. Shaler 336
The Orphan Brigade 337
Tom Marshall 339
Lincoln in Kentucky 341
William L. Visscher 342
Proem 343
Bennett H. Young 344
Prehistoric Weapons 345
James H. Mulligan 348
In Kentucky 350
Over the Hill to Hustonville 351
Nelly M. McAffee 353
Finale 353
Mary F. Childs 356
De Namin' ob de Twins 357
William T. Price 359
The Offenbach and Gilbert Operas 361
George M. Davie 363
"Frater, Ave Atque Vale" 363
Hadrian, Dying, to His Soul 364
John Uri Lloyd 364
"Let's Have The Mercy Text" 366

[Pg 1]



John Filson, the first Kentucky historian, was born at East Fallowfield, Pennsylvania, in 1747. He was educated at the academy of the Rev. Samuel Finley, at Nottingham, Maryland. Finley was afterwards president of Princeton University. John Filson looked askance at the Revolutionary War, and came out to Kentucky about 1783. In Lexington he conducted a school for a year, and spent his leisure hours in collecting data for a history of Kentucky. He interviewed Daniel Boone, Levi Todd, James Harrod, and many other Kentucky pioneers; and the information they gave him was united with his own observations, forming the material for his book. Filson did not remain in Kentucky much over a year for, in 1784, he went to Wilmington, Delaware, and persuaded James Adams, the town's chief printer, to issue his manuscript as The Discovery, Settlement, and Present State of Kentucke; and then he continued his journey to Philadelphia, where his map of the three original counties of Kentucky—Jefferson, Fayette, and Lincoln—was printed and dedicated to General Washington and the United States Congress. This Wilmington edition of Filson's history is far and away the most famous history of Kentucky ever published. Though it contained but 118 pages, one of the six extant copies recently fetched the fabulous sum of $1,250—the highest price ever paid for a Kentucky book. The little work was divided into two parts, the first part being devoted to the history of the country, and the second part was the first biography of Daniel Boone ever published.[Pg 2] Boone dictated this famous story of his life to the Pennsylvania pedagogue, who put it into shape for publication, yet several Western writers refer to it as "Boone's autobiography." Boone is the author's central hero straight through the work, and he is happier when discussing him than in relating the country's meager history. Filson's Kentucky was translated into French by M. Parraud, and issued at Paris in 1785; and in the same year a German version was published. Gilbert Imlay incorporated it into the several editions of his Topographical Description of the Western Territory of North America (London, 1793). And several subsequent Western writers also reproduced it in their works, seldom giving Filson the proper credit for it. The last three or four years of his life John Filson spent in Kentucky, Illinois, and Indiana. He was one of the founders of Cincinnati, which he named "Losantiville;" and a short time later, in 1788, he wandered into the Miami woods one day and was never seen again. Col. Reuben T. Durrett, the Louisville historian, wrote his biography, and established an historical organization, in 1884, which he named the "Filson Club." Filson's fame is secure in Kentucky, and Colonel Durrett and his work have made it so.

Bibliography. The Life and Writings of John Filson, by R. T. Durrett (Louisville, Kentucky, 1884); Kentuckians in History and Literature, by John Wilson Townsend (New York, 1907); The First Map of Kentucky, by P. Lee Phillips (Washington, 1908).


[From The Discovery, Settlement, and Present State of Kentucky (Wilmington, Delaware, 1784)]

This country is more temperate and healthy than the other settled parts of America. In summer it has not the sandy heats which Virginia and Carolina experience, and receives a fine air from its rivers. In winter, which at most lasts three months,[Pg 3] commonly two, and is but seldom severe, the people are safe in bad houses; and the beasts have a goodly supply without fodder. The winter begins about Christmas, and ends about the first of March, at farthest does not exceed the middle of that month. Snow seldom falls deep or lies long. The west winds often bring storms and the east winds clear the sky; but there is no steady rule of weather in that respect, as in the northern states. The west winds are sometimes cold and nitrous. The Ohio running in that direction, and there being mountains on that quarter, the westerly winds, by sweeping along their tops, in the cold regions of the air, and over a long tract of frozen water, collect cold in their course, and convey it over the Kentucky country; but the weather is not so intensely severe as these winds bring with them in Pennsylvania. The air and seasons depend very much on the winds as to heat and cold, dryness and moisture.


[From the same]

Among the native animals are the urus, bison, or zorax, described by Cesar, which we call a buffalo, much resembling a large bull, of a great size, with a large head, thick, short, crooked horns, and broader in his forepart than behind. Upon his shoulder is a large lump of flesh, covered with a thick boss of long wool and curly hair, of a dark brown color. They do not rise from the ground as our cattle, but spring up at once upon their feet; are of a broad make, and clumsy appearance, with short legs, but run fast, and turn not aside for any thing when chased, except a standing tree. They weigh from 500 to 1000 weight, are excellent meat, supplying the inhabitants in many parts with beef, and their hides make good leather. I have heard a hunter assert, he saw above 1000 buffaloes at the Blue Licks at once; so numerous were they before the first settlers had wantonly sported away their lives. There still remains a great number in the exterior parts of the settlement. They feed upon cane and grass, as other cattle, and are innocent, harmless creatures.

There are still to be found many deer, elks, and bears, within the settlement, and many more on the borders of it. There are also panthers, wild cats, and wolves.

[Pg 4]

The waters have plenty of beavers, otters, minks, and muskrats: nor are the animals common to other parts wanting, such as foxes, rabbits, squirrels, racoons, ground-hogs, pole-cats, and opossums. Most of the species of the domestic quadrupeds have been introduced since the settlement, such as horses, cows, sheep, and hogs, which are prodigiously multiplied, suffered to run in the woods without a keeper, and only brought home when wanted.


[From the same]

It was on the 1st of May, in the year 1769, that I resigned my domestic happiness for a time, and left my family and peaceable habitation on the Yadkin river, in North Carolina, to wander through the wilderness of America, in quest of the country of Kentucky, in company with John Finley, John Stewart, Joseph Holden, James Monay, and William Cool. We proceeded successfully; and after a long and fatiguing journey, through a mountainous wilderness, in a westward direction, on the seventh day of June following we found ourselves on Red river, where John Finley had formerly been trading with the Indians, and, from the top of an eminence, saw with pleasure the beautiful level of Kentucky. Here let me observe, that for some time we had experienced the most uncomfortable weather as a prelibation of our future sufferings. At this place we encamped, and made a shelter to defend us from the inclement season, and began to hunt and reconnoiter the country. We found everywhere abundance of wild beasts of all sorts, through this vast forest. The buffaloe were more frequent than I have seen cattle in the settlements, browsing on the leaves of the cane, or cropping the herbage on those extensive plains, fearless, because ignorant, of the violence of man. Sometimes we saw hundreds in a drove, and the numbers about the salt springs were amazing. In this forest, the habitation of beasts of every kind natural to America, we practiced hunting with great success, until the 22d day of December following.

[Pg 5]


John Bradford, Kentucky's pioneer journalist, was born near Warrenton, Virginia, in 1749. He saw service in the Revolutionary War, and came to Kentucky when thirty years of age. He fought against the Indians at Chillicothe, and, in 1785, brought his family out from Virginia to Kentucky, locating at Cane Run, near Lexington. Two years later he and his brother, Fielding Bradford, founded The Kentucke Gazette, the first issue of which appeared Saturday, August 18, 1787—the second newspaper west of the Alleghanies. The following year John Bradford published The Kentucke Almanac, the first pamphlet from a Western press; and this almanac was issued every twelvemonth for many years. Fielding Bradford withdrew from the Gazette in May, 1788, and "Old Jawn," as he was called, carried the entire burden until 1802, when his son, Daniel Bradford, assumed control. In March, 1789, under instructions from the Virginia legislature, Bradford discarded "Kentucke" for "Kentucky," one of the many interesting facts connected with the Gazette. John Bradford was the first state printer; and the first book he published was the laws passed by the first Kentucky legislature, which assembled at Lexington in 1792. The Bradfords published many of the most important early Western books, and a "Bradford" brings joy to the heart of any present-day collector of Kentuckiana. The column in the Gazette devoted to verse, headed "Sacred to the Muses," preserved many early Western poems; but the little anecdotes which seldom failed to be tucked beneath the verse, were nearly always coarse and vulgar, giving one a rather excellent index to the editor's morals or the morals of his readers. Bradford appears to have taken a great fancy to the poems of Philip Freneau (1752-1832), the first real American poet, for he "picked up" more than twenty of them from the Freeman's[Pg 6] Journal. The most complete files of the Kentucky Gazette are preserved in the Lexington Public Library, though the vandals that have consulted them from time to time have cut and inked out many valuable things. John Bradford was a public-spirited citizen, being, at different times, chairman of the town trustees, and of the board of trustees of Transylvania University. He was a profound mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher, his contemporaries tell us, and in proof thereof they have handed down another of his sobriquets, "Old Wisdom." Though his fame as the first Kentucky editor is fixed, as an author his reputation rests upon The General Instructor; or, the Office, Duty, and Authority of Justices of the Peace, Sheriffs, Coroners, and Constables, in the State of Kentucky (Lexington, Ky., 1800), a legal compilation; and upon his more famous work, Notes on Kentucky (Xenia, Ohio, 1827). These sixty-two articles were originally printed in the Gazette between August 25, 1826, and January 9, 1829. Upon this work John Bradford is ranked among the Kentucky historians. At the time of his death, which occurred at Lexington, Kentucky, March 31, 1830, he was sheriff of Fayette county.

Bibliography. No biography of Bradford has been written, but any of the histories of Kentucky contain extended notices of his life and work.


[From the Kentucky Gazette (August 25, 1826)]

This country was well known to the Indian traders many years before its settlement. They gave a description of it to Lewis Evans, who published his first map of it as early as 1752.

In the year 1750,[2] Dr. Thomas Walker, Colby Chew, Ambrose[Pg 7] Powell and several others from the counties of Orange and Culpepper, in the state of Virginia, set out on an excursion to the Western Waters; they traveled down the Holstein river, and crossed over the Mountains into Powell's valley, thence across the Cumberland mountain at the gap where the road now crosses, proceeded on across what was formerly known by the name of the Wilderness until they arrived at the Hazlepath; here the company divided, Dr. Walker with a part continued north until they came to the Kentucky river which they named Louisa or Levisa river. After traveling down the excessive broken or hilly margin some distance they became dissatisfied and returned and continued up one of its branches to its head, and crossed over the mountains to New River at the place called Walker's Meadows.

In the year 1754 James McBride with some others, passed down the Ohio river in canoes, and landed at the mouth of the Kentucky river, where they marked on a tree the initials of their names, and the date of the year. These men passed through the country and were the first who gave a particular account of its beauty and richness of soil to the inhabitants of the British settlements in America.

No further notice seems to have been taken of Kentucky until the year 1767, when John Finlay with others (whilst trading with the Indians) passed through a part of the rich lands of Kentucky. It was then called by the Indians in their language, the Dark and Bloody Grounds. Some difference took place between these traders and the Indians, and Finlay deemed it prudent to return to his residence in North Carolina, where he communicated his knowledge of the country to Col. Daniel Boone and others. This seems to have been one of the most important events in the history of Kentucky, as it was the exciting cause which prompted Col. Boone shortly afterwards to make his first visit to the Dark and Bloody Grounds.

[Pg 8]


Matthew Lyon, "the Hampden of Congress," was born in County Wicklow, Ireland, July 14, 1750. He emigrated to America when he was fifteen years old, and settled in Woodbury, Connecticut, as an apprentice of Jabez Bacon, the wealthiest merchant in all New England. Lyon left Connecticut, in 1774, and removed to Vermont, where he became one of the famous Green Mountain Boys of the Revolution. He was a member of the Vermont legislature for four years; and in 1783 he founded the town of Fair Haven, Vermont. Lyon became one of the great men of Vermont, a disciple of Thomas Jefferson, "the pioneer Democrat of New England." In 1796 he was elected to Congress and he went to Philadelphia in May, 1797, to enter upon his duties. He at once became one of the powerful men in that body. Lyon had published a newspaper at Fair Haven for several years, besides issuing a number of books from his press, but during the years of 1798 and 1799 he edited the now famous Scourge of Aristocracy, a semi-monthly magazine. At the present day this is a rare volume, and much to be desired. In 1801 Lyon cast Vermont's vote for Thomas Jefferson against Aaron Burr for the presidency, and this vote is said to have made certain Jefferson's election. Late in this year of 1801 Lyon left Vermont for Kentucky, and he later became the founder of Eddyville, Lyon county, Kentucky. The county, however, was named in honor of his son, Chittenden Lyon. In 1802 Matthew Lyon was a member of the Kentucky legislature; and from 1803 to 1811 he was in the lower House of Congress from his Kentucky district. His opposition to the War of 1812 retired him to private life. At Eddyville he was engaged in shipbuilding, in which he had great success, but after his defeat for reëlection to Congress, in 1812, disasters came fast upon him, and he was reduced from affluence to comparative[Pg 9] poverty. At the age of sixty-eight years, however, he recovered himself, paid all his debts, and died in easy circumstances. In 1820 Lyon was appointed United States Factor to the Cherokee Indians of Arkansas territory, and he set out for his future home at Spadra Bluff, Arkansas. He was later elected as Arkansas's second delegate to Congress, but he did not live to take his seat, dying at Spadra Bluff, August 1, 1822. Eleven years later his remains were returned to Kentucky, and re-interred at Eddyville, where a proper monument marks the spot to-day. Matthew Lyon's reply to John Randolph of Roanoke, in 1804, in regard to the old question of the Yazoo frauds, is his only extant speech that is at all remembered at the present time.

Bibliography. The History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Matthew Lyon, by J. F. McLaughlin (New York, 1900).


[From Matthew Lyon, by J. F. McLaughlin (New York, 1900)]

The Postmaster General [Gideon Granger] has not lost my esteem, nor do I think his character can be injured by the braying of a jackal, or the fulminations of a madman. But, sir, permit me to inquire from whom these charges of bribery, of corruption, and of robbery, come? Is it from one who has for forty years, in one shape or other, been intrusted with the property and concerns of other people, and has never wanted for confidence, one whose long and steady practice of industry, integrity, and well doing, has obtained for him his standing on this floor? Is it from one[Pg 10] who sneered with contempt on the importunity with which he has solicited to set a price on the important vote he held in the last Presidential election? No, sir, these charges have been fabricated in the disordered imagination of a young man whose pride has been provoked by my refusing to sing encores to all his political dogmas. I have had the impudence to differ from him in some few points, and some few times to neglect his fiat. It is long since I have observed that the very sight of my plebeian face has had an unpleasant effect on the gentleman's nose, for out of respect to this House and to the State he represents, I will yet occasionally call him gentleman. I say, sir, these charges have been brought against me by a person nursed in the bosom of opulence, inheriting the life services of a numerous train of the human species, and extensive fields, the original proprietors of which property, in all probability, came no honester by it than the purchasers of the Georgia lands did by what they claim. Let that gentleman apply the fable of the thief and the receiver, in Dilworth's Spelling Book, so ingeniously quoted by himself, in his own case, and give up the stolen men in his possession. I say, sir, these charges have come from a person whose fortune, leisure and genius have enabled him to obtain a great share of the wisdom of the schools, but who in years, experience, and the knowledge of the world and the ways of man, is many, many years behind those he implicates—a person who, from his rant in this House, seems to have got his head as full of British contracts and British modes of corruption as ever Don Quixote's was supposed to have been of chivalry, enchantments and knight errantry—a person who seems to think no man can be honest and independent unless he has inherited land and negroes, nor is he willing to allow a man to vote in the people's elections unless he is a landholder.

I can tell that gentleman I am as far from offering or receiving a bribe as he or any other member on this floor; it is a charge which no man ever made against me before him, who from his insulated situation, unconversant with the world, is perhaps as little acquainted with my character as any member of this House, or almost any man in the nation, and I do most cordially believe that, had my back and my mind been supple enough to rise and fall with his motions, I should have escaped his censure.

[Pg 11]

I, sir, have none of that pride which sets men above being merchants and dealers; the calling of a merchant is, in my opinion, equally dignified, and no more than equally dignified with that of a farmer, or a manufacturer. I have a great part of my life been engaged in all the stations of merchant, farmer and manufacturer, in which I have honestly earned and lost a great deal of property, in the character of a merchant. I act like other merchants, look out for customers with whom I can make bargains advantageous to both parties; it is all the same to me whether I contract with an individual or the public; I see no constitutional impediment to a member of this House serving the public for the same reward the public gives another. Whenever my constituents or myself think I have contracts inconsistent with my duties as a member of this House, I will retire from it.

I came to this House as a representative of a free, a brave, and a generous people. I thank my Creator that He gave me the face of a man, not that of an ape or a monkey, and that He gave me the heart of a man also, a heart which will spare to its last drop in defence of the dignity of the station my generous constituents have placed me in. I shall trouble the House no farther at this time, than by observing that I shall not be deterred by the threats of the member from Virginia from giving the vote I think the interest and honor of the nation require; and by saying if that member means to be understood that I have offered contracts from the Postmaster-General, the assertion or insinuation has no foundation in truth, and I challenge him to bring forward his boasted proof.


Gilbert Imlay, the first Kentucky novelist, was born in New Jersey, about 1755. He was captain of a company in the Revolution. The war over, Imlay turned his face toward the West; and he reached the Falls of the Ohio—Louisville—in 1784. In the little river town he worked under George May as a "commissioner for laying out lands in the back settlements." Imlay had not been a[Pg 12] Kentuckian many months before he had obtained patents for many thousand acres of land—all of which he subsequently lost. It is not certainly known how long he remained in Kentucky, but it was about eight years. He went to London in 1792 and, in that year, the first edition of his Topographical Description of the Western Territory of North America was published. This work is made up of a series of descriptive letters which the author wrote from Kentucky to an English friend. The second edition of 1793, and the third edition of 1797, reproduced John Filson's Kentucke and Thomas Hutchins's History, together with much new material. While a resident of Kentucky Gilbert Imlay wrote the first Kentucky novel, entitled The Emigrants, or the History of an Expatriated Family, being a Delineation of English Manners drawn from Real Characters. Written in America, by G. Imlay, Esq. (London, 1793, 3 vols.; Dublin, 1794, 1 vol.). The epistolary form is adopted throughout, and the narrative relates the fortunes of "an eminent merchant in the city of London," Mr. T——n, who loses his great fortune and emigrates with his family to America. His daughter, the beautiful Caroline, is the heroine of the story. Landing in Philadelphia, they travel to Pittsburgh, and from there drift down the Ohio river in a Kentucky flatboat, or "ark," to Louisville. Caroline's lover, Capt Arl——ton, had preceded the family and gone on to Lexington, but he soon returned to Louisville when he learned that his sweetheart awaited his coming. "The emigrants" remained in Kentucky some three months, or from June until August. Caroline's capture by the Indians in August decided the family to forsake the "dark and bloody ground," though she was safely rescued. They finally find their way to London, and all ends well. The Emigrants, in the three-volume edition, is exceedingly scarce, but the Dublin one-volume edition may be occasionally[Pg 13] procured in the rare book shops of London. In 1793 Gilbert Imlay went to Paris, where he met the famous Mary Wollstonecraft, with whom he was soon living, as they both held mutual affection equivalent to marriage. In 1794 a daughter was born to them, Fanny Imlay, who committed suicide at Swansea, October 10, 1816. In April, 1796, Imlay and Mary agreed to go separate paths after much stormy weather together; and a short time later she became the wife of William Godwin, the English philosopher and novelist. In giving birth to the future wife of the poet Shelley, she surrendered her own life. Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman is the chief memorial of her pathetic and eventful career. After having parted on that April morning of 1796 with the woman he had so outrageously treated, Gilbert Imlay, "the handsome scoundrel," is lost to history. When, where, or how he died is unknown.

Bibliography. London Monthly Review (August, 1793); Kentuckians in History and Literature, by John Wilson Townsend (New York, 1907); Dictionary of National Biography; biographies of Shelley, Godwin, and Mary Wollstonecraft.


[From The Emigrants (Dublin, 1794)]


Louisville, June.

It is impossible for me to see Caroline in the present state of my mind, and therefore I hope you will not look upon it in the least disrespectful, my friend, if I should happen to be absent when you arrive; for to be candid with you, I shall make a journey purposely to Lexington.

Your obliging favour from Pittsburg, which you meant should give me spirits, has had quite a contrary effect.

By attempting to soothe my mind, I discover that secret poison, flattery, ever contains, and which I consider the principal cause of my present wretchedness.

[Pg 14]

The image you have given of Caroline makes her appear to me more lovely than ever; and when you say that enchantment seems to spring up where e'er she treads, I feel the full force of all her charms, and conceive that I behold her in this season of fragrance and beauty, decorating those gardens which you passed through on your return from the fatal view upon the Allegany,

While the blushing rose, drooping hides its head,
As Caroline's sweets more odorous prove,
And op'ning lilies look faint, sick, and dead,—
For things inanimate, feel the force of love.

She is irresistible—and it is only by absence that I shall ever be enabled to forget my misfortunes, and therefore, my dear friend, I must request that in your future letters, when you mention that divine woman, you will not appreciate that beauty which has ten thousand charms to fascinate and fetter the soul.

She has not only all the symmetry of form, the softness of love, and the enchantment of a goddess; but she can assume an animation and that surprising activity of motion, that while you are suspended in the transports of astonishment, you are lost in admiration at the gracefulness with which she moves—I have seen her bound over a rock, and pluck a wild honey-suckle, that grew upon the side of a precipice, and while I stood gazing at her in amazement, she has brought it as a trophy of her exertions.

Believe, my friend, that if ever nature formed one woman to excel another in personal charms, it must be Caroline.

I leave this enclosed in a packet for General W——. I am this moment informed there are boats making round Diamond Island. Who knows but one of them contains the lovely Caroline? Ah! my friend, I feel every emotion of love and shame so powerfully, that I must instantly fly to avoid exposing myself—curse that mandate which banished me from the lovely tyrant of my heart—curse the vanity which exposed my weakness;—for damnable is that fate which compels a man to avoid the object of all others, which to him is the most interesting—I must this instant be off. O Caroline!—Caroline! while my soul deadens at the thought, I abandon the spot which will be converted into elysium the moment you arrive. Forgive me, my friend, this[Pg 15] effusion of nature—this weakness, for it prepares us for those delicious raptures, that flow from the source of sympathy, and while it softens us to that tender texture, which is congenial to feminine charms, it invigorates our actions, and fosters every generous and noble sentiment.

The streamers of your vessels, for it must be you, are playing in the wind, as if enraptured with the treasure over which they impend, seem eradiated with the charms of Caroline; while the gentle Ohio, as if conscious of its charge, proudly swells, and appears to vie with the more elevated earth, in order to secure to its divinity, upon which to tread at her disembarkation, the flowery carpet of its banks.

Adieu. I am off. J. A.



Louisville, June.

My dear James,

From the time we left Pittsburg until our arrival here, which was ten days after our embarkation, we were all appreciating the pleasure we should derive from finding you at this place.

I had expatiated largely upon the satisfaction we should experience from the information you would give us of the country; and no sooner were we in sight of the town that we hung out a flag of invitation; not doubting that you would observe it, and immediately come off to us in a barge; but what was the surprise of the whole part, and my mortification, when we learned upon landing, you had left the place not more than half an hour.

The letter you left enclosed for me in General W——'s packet, to be sure, informed me of the cause of your absence; but it by no means justified the action. And I demand as a proof of your respect for your old friends, that you instantly return.

Remember, James, this is the command of a friend, who is anxious to restore you to a state of reason, which it appears you have not possessed for some time past.

Caroline was in tolerable spirits until within two days of our arrival, when she suddenly appeared to be pensive and in a state of extreme trepidation; and since we arrived she has been confined[Pg 16] by indisposition.

If you have a delicate and tender regard for this charming girl, you will fly immediately to enquire after her health. But to put it out of your power to frame a shadow for an excuse, I inform you that it is my intention first to visit the Illinois, and to view this country on my return.

I waited during yesterday for an opportunity to send this, and as I could not meet with one, I send a person I have hired for that purpose, as my men are unacquainted with the country.

Believe me to be your sincere, but unhappy friend,

G. Il—ray.


letter xlviii. capt. arl—ton to mr. il—ray.

Lexington, June.

Your express has this moment reached me: and to convince you, my dear Il—ray, that no man can be more alive to every sentiment of love and friendship, I shall not defer my return to Louisville a single hour; and I merely dispatch this by the return of your messenger, to let you know I shall be with you tomorrow in the evening; and that in my present distracted state of mind, I think it most advisable to make my entre under the cover of the dark, to prevent my being perceived, as I wish to devote the whole evening in sequestered converse with you, my friend.

Caroline is ill! Ah! Il—ray I am wretched in the extreme. I am burnt up with a scorching fever—I am wrecked in the elements of every painful passion, and my every effort to reason is baffled by my reflections upon past occurrences.

But I am your indissoluble friend,

J. Arl—ton.

[Pg 17]


Rev. Adam Rankin, author of the first book ever printed in Kentucky, was born in Pennsylvania, March 24, 1755. He was graduated from Liberty Hall, now Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia, when about twenty-five years of age; and two years later he was licensed to preach by the Virginia Presbytery. Rev. Rankin came to Lexington, Kentucky, in 1784, to accept the pastorate of the Presbyterian church. He also conducted a school for some time, but his one thought was Psalmody, which became "his monomania." He created a schism in his church by insisting that Dr. Watts's imitation of the Psalms of David be expelled from the church worship, and that the Psalms in their most literal dress be chanted. His brethren disapproved of his views, but they could not discourage him or cause him to discard his contention. Everywhere he went he preached and wrote upon his favorite subject. Rev. Rankin's Kentucky brethren made life unbearable for him, and he went to London, where he remained for two years. When he did return to Kentucky it was to face accusation after accusation, and church trial after church trial, until he was finally suspended. Rev. Rankin was a strange, eccentric man, a dreamer of dreams, a Kentucky Luther, and, perhaps, a bit crazed with the bitter opposition his views received. His latest, boldest dream was that Jerusalem was about to be rebuilt and that he must hurry there in order to assist in the rebuilding. He bade his Lexington flock farewell, and started to the Holy City, but, on November 25, 1827, death overtook him at Philadelphia. Rev. Rankin was the author of several theological works, but his A Process in the Transylvania Presbytery, &c. (Maxwell and Gooch, At the Sign of the Buffalo, Main Street, Lexington, 1793), is the first book ever printed in Kentucky, if the Kentucky Acts which John Bradford published in[Pg 18] the same year be excepted. Many days were required to print this little book of Rankin upon the hand-press of the publishers, though it contained but ninety-six pages, divided into five parts. Although it is not great literature, it is the first book that can, in any wise, come under that term published in this State. It is surely of more literary importance than Bradford's Acts. Rev. Rankin was, as were nearly all of the early Kentucky theologians, a prolific pamphleteer. His Dialogues (Lexington, 1810), is really his most important publication, but it has been greatly overlooked in the recent rush among Kentucky historical writers to list A Process as the first book published in Kentucky. His eccentric career as a man and preacher is, after all, of more interest than his work as an author.

Bibliography. History of the Presbyterian Church in Kentucky, by R. H. Davidson (New York, 1847); The Centenary of Kentucky, by R. T. Durrett (Louisville, Kentucky, 1892).


[From A Process in the Transylvania Presbytery (Lexington, Ky., 1793)]

We believe, that as it respects the outward means, the ambassadors are authorised to publish, proclaim, and declare the counsel of God, as it stands connected with our salvation; and that all, who hear the sound, have an equal and indefinite warrant, not only to embrace the means as offered to them indiscriminately, by which comes faith, but have a right to believe, that Christ, with all his benefits, is freely offered to them, as sinners, without ever enquiring, into the secret purposes of God, whether they are elect, or non-elect.


[From the same]

Seeing, under our government, it is not purchasing a liberty by pecuniary rewards, further, than compensating a prothonotary, for taking bond and security, that guardians are agreed,[Pg 19] and keeping a just register, for the credit and safety of the rising family. And as the contract is partly civil in its nature, and civil government is bound to defend the civil rights—we believe it perfectly consonant to the analogy of faith, which might be evinced from the fourth chapter of Ruth. But as it is partly social, and the parties contracting come under the mutual obligations to fulfil their relative duties, it ought to be consummated before witnesses. And as it is partly religious, every family appertaining to the Church of Christ, commences a nursery, or infant society, to train up their family in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. We believe it right, that whenever a church in full order exists, that the pastor, or church officer should consecrate them, to the business assigned them as a Church of Christ, taking their obligations for the due performance of their duty.


Thomas Johnson, Junior, the first Kentucky poet, who, for many years, enjoyed the sobriquet of the "Drunken Poet of Danville," was born in Virginia about 1760, and he came to Kentucky when twenty-five years of age. He settled at Danville, then a village, and immediately entered into the role of poet, punster, and ne'er-do-weel. Documentary evidence is extant to prove that Danville was a gay little town when the young Virginian arrived there about 1785; and he was early drawn into excesses, or led others into them. Johnson was a rather prolific maker of coarse satirical rhymes, which he finally assembled into a small pamphlet, and published them as The Kentucky Miscellany (Lexington, 1796). This was the first book of poems, if they may be so termed, printed in Kentucky. The original price of this pamphlet was nine pence the copy, but it is impossible to procure it today for any price, and there is not an extant copy of this first edition. The Kentucky Miscellany went into a second[Pg 20] edition in 1815, and a third edition was published a few years later, but no copies of either edition are extant. The fourth and final edition appeared from the Advertiser office at Lexington, in 1821, and a dog-eared, much-mutilated copy of this is in the collection of the Filson Club in Louisville—perhaps the only copy in the world. The Miscellany contained but thirty-six small pages, about the size of the medical almanacs of to-day. Many of the little verses are very vulgar and actually obscene, perhaps due to the fact that Johnson could never quite bury John Barleycorn alive. The most famous of them is the Extempore Grace, which the bard delivered one day in the tavern of old Erasmus Gill in Danville. In his cups he stumbled into the tavern dining-room, where he found the meal over, and the guests gone, nothing being left but the crumbs. He glanced at the tables, then at Gill, and offered Extempore Grace. His lines on Danville, on Kentucky, and on several other subjects reveal the satirist; and the verses to Polly, his sweetheart, and to his favorite physician the better elements in his nature. That these rather vulgar verses of Johnson did not escape the censorship of Western advocates of the pure food law in literature, is made certain by a letter from an Ohio critic which appeared in the Lexington Intelligencer for January 28, 1834. After having made a strong plea for the preservation of early Western verse, the writer added: "I do not mean to embrace the low doggerel of Tom Johnson; this was published some years ago, and I never felt decency more outraged than when it was handed me to read by mine landlady! My stars! Save us from the blackguardism, for the world is sufficiently demoralized." Had this early critic of Tom's verses presented a bundle of them to some library, how many Western writers would rise up and call him blessed! Johnson died and was buried at Danville, but the date of his death or the[Pg 21] exact place of his burial is unknown. He had passed and was almost forgotten by 1830.

Bibliography. History of the Presbyterian Church in Kentucky, by R. H. Davidson (New York, 1847); History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Centre College Cento (Danville, Kentucky, January, 1907); Kentuckians in History and Literature, by J. W. Townsend (New York, 1907).


[From The Kentucky Miscellany (Lexington, Kentucky, 1821)]

O! Thou who blest the loaves and fishes
Look down upon these empty dishes;
And that same power that did them fill,
Bless each of us, but d—— old Gill!


[From the same]

Accursed Danville, vile, detested spot,
Where knaves inhabit, and where fools resort—
Thy roguish cunning, and thy deep design,
Would shame a Bluebeard or an Algerine.
O, may thy fatal day be ever curst,
When by blind error led, I entered first.


[From the same]

I hate Kentucky, curse the place,
And all her vile and miscreant race!
Who make religion's sacred tie
A mask thro' which they cheat and lie.
Proteus could not change his shape,
Nor Jupiter commit a rape
With half the ease those villains can
Send prayers to God and cheat their man!
I hate all Judges here of late,
And every Lawyer in the State.
[Pg 22] Each quack that is called Physician,
And all blockheads in Commission—
Worse than the Baptist roaring rant,
I hate the Presbyterian cant—
Their Parsons, Elders, nay, the whole,
And wish them gone with all my soul.


[From the same]

Strange things of Orpheus poets tell,
How for a wife he went to Hell;
Hudson, a wiser man no doubt,
Would go to Hell to be without!


[From the same]

Ye fools! I told you once or twice,
You'd hear no more from canting R——e;
He cannot settle his affairs,
Nor pay attention unto prayers,
Unless you pay up your arrears.
Oh, how in pulpit he would storm,
And fill all Hell with dire alarm!
Vengeance pronounced against each vice,
And, more than all, curs'd avarice;
Preach'd money was the root of ill;
Consigned each rich man unto Hell;
But since he finds you will not pay,
Both rich and poor may go that way.
'Tis no more than I expected—
The meeting-house is now neglected:
All trades are subject to this chance,
No longer pipe, no longer dance.


[From the same]

Underneath this marble tomb,
In endless shades lies drunken Tom;
[Pg 23] Here safely moored, dead as a log,
Who got his death by drinking grog.
By whiskey grog he lost his breath—
Who would not die so sweet a death?


George Beck, classicist, born in England in 1749, became instructor of mathematics at Woolwich Academy, near London, at the age of twenty-seven years; but he was later dismissed. Beck married an English woman of culture and emigrated to the United States in 1795, reaching these shores in time to serve "Mad Anthony" Wayne as a scout in his Indian campaign. The wanderlust was upon George Beck, and he became one of the first of that little band of nomadic painters that came early to the Blue Grass country, and having once come remained. He arrived at Lexington in 1800; and it was not long before he began to send short original poems and spirited translations of Anacreon, Homer, Horace, and Virgil to old John Bradford's Gazette. At about this time, too, Beck was doing many portraits and a group of landscapes in oils of the Kentucky river country, a few of which have come down to posterity. Eighteen hundred and six seems to have been Beck's best year in Kentucky from the literary viewpoint, as the Gazette is full of his verses and translations. He was widely known as the "Lexington Horace." Besides painting and poetry, George Beck was a rather learned astronomer, as his Observations on the Comet of 1811 prove. With his wife he conducted an "Academy for Young Ladies" for several years. His last years were much embittered by the lack of appreciation upon the part of the Western public. The Kentucky of 1800 was not a whirlpool of art or literature by any means, and this cultured man languished and finally died among[Pg 24] a people who cared very little for his fine learning or his manners. George Beck, poet, translator, mathematician, astronomer, artist, died in Lexington, Kentucky, December 14, 1812. His wife survived him until the cholera year of 1833, which swept away nearly two thousand citizens of Lexington and the Blue Grass.

Bibliography. Kentucky Gazette (Lexington, December 22, 1812); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i).


A New Translation of the Fifteenth Ode of Horace, or Prophecy of Nerceus, from which (according to Count Algorotti and Dr. Johnson) Gray took his beautiful Ode, The Bard.

[From The Kentucky Gazette (October 27, 1806)]

What time the fair perfidious shepherd bore
The beauteous Helen back to Ilion's shore,
To sleep the howling waves were won
By Nerceus, Ocean's hoary son,
While round the liquid realms he sung,
From guilty love, what dire disasters sprung.
Thee, tainted Youth, what omens dire attend!
Thy neck and Ilion's soon to Greece shall bend.
To man and horse what sweat and blood,
What carnage float down Xanthus' flood!
What wrath on Troy shall Greece infuriate turn!
What glittering domes, and spires, and temples burn!
In vain you boast the Queen of beauty's smiles,
Her charms, her floating curls, her amourous wiles,
These, these alas! will nought avail
While Cretan arrows round you sail!
And, tho' the fates awhile such guilt may spare,
Vile dust at length shall smear that golden hair!
Trace back, vain Youth! sad Ilion's fate of old!
[Pg 25] Ulysses' sons and Nestor's yet behold,
Teucer's and Diomede's more dread
Horrific war shall round you shed;
Then shall ye trembling fly like timid deer
When hungry wolves are howling in their rear.
By promise Vain of Universal Sway
Lur'd you from Greece the beauteous Queen away?
In less than ten revolving years
Achilles' dreadful fleet appears!
His bloody trains of Myrmidonians dire
Shall wrap proud Ilion's domes in Grecian fire!


[From The Kentucky Gazette (November 3, 1806)]

What deathless Artist's mimic hand
Shall paint me here the Ocean bland,
Shall give the waves such kindling glows
As when immortal Venus rose?
Who, in phrenzy's flight of mind
Such touch and tinctures bright may find
To match her form and golden hair
And naked paint the heavenly fair?
While every amorous rival billow
Strives her buoyant breast to pillow?
'Tis done! behold the wavelets green
Softly press the Paphian Queen,
Around her heavenly bosom play,
Kiss its warm blush and melt away.
Her graceful neck of pearl behold,
Her wavy curls of floating gold:
But none but lips divine may tell
What Graces on that bosom dwell!
Such bloom a bed of lilies shows
Illumin'd by the crimson'd rose.
Rounding off with grace divine
Like hills of snow her shoulders shine.
While streaming thro' the waves she swims
[Pg 26] The silvery maze half veils her limbs,
Else where's the eye that durst behold
Such beauty stream'd on heavenly mold?
Th' enamour'd Triton's glittering train
Sporting round the liquid main
Waving their gold and silver pinions,
Bear her o'er their deep dominions,
While infant Loves and young desires
Dancing 'mid the choral choirs
Clasp the beauteous Queen around
And sail in triumph o'er the bright profound.


[From The Western Review (Lexington, March, 1821)]

I would Atrides' glory tell,
I would to Cadmus strike my shell;
I try the vocal cords—in vain!
Love, only love, breathes through the strain.
I strip away the truant wire,
And string with deeper chords the lyre,
Then great Alcides' toils would sing:
Soft love still sighs through every string.
Hence, themes of Glory, hence! adieu!
For what have I to do with you?
My heart and lyre in union make
Resounding Love and only Love.


Humphrey Marshall, author of the first History of Kentucky that was in any wise comprehensive, was born near Warrenton, Virginia, in 1760. What little school instruction he received was from the young woman whom he afterwards married. Marshall removed to Kentucky in 1782, after having served as an officer in the Revolutionary War. He was a member of the Virginia convention of 1788, as a representative of the district of Kentucky,[Pg 27] which adopted the Federal constitution. Marshall was in the Kentucky legislature for several terms and, from 1795 to 1801, he was United States Senator from Kentucky. Some years later he was again in the State legislature; and at about that time his famous duel with Henry Clay took place. The first edition of his History of Kentucky (Frankfort, 1812), appeared in a single volume of 407 pages; but the second and final edition was greatly revised and augmented and published in two octavo volumes (Frankfort, 1824). Humphrey Marshall's pen was pointed with poison for his enemies (and he had more of them than any other Kentuckian of his time, perhaps), and in his book he lashed them ruthlessly. He was the first as well as the last of Kentucky's "personal" historians. He first endeavored to silence his foes with newspapers and pamphlets, but, not being satisfied with the results, he poured out his wrath in book form to the extent of a thousand pages and more. While prejudice is the most descriptive word possible to use in characterizing Marshall's work, it is not all prejudice. He wrote with wonderful keenness concerning the Spanish conspiracy in Kentucky, his views upon the men that were guilty of bartering Kentucky to Spain in order to obtain free navigation of the Mississippi river having been abundantly affirmed by the latest historical work upon that subject. He also wrote of the Burr conspiracy with great clearness of vision, all of which is very remarkable when one stops to consider that nearly every one of the men connected with these two conspiracies were his bitterest enemies. That Marshall was an able writer all of the Kentucky historians have freely admitted, notwithstanding the fact they have quarreled with his "copy" many times. He is, as his biographer writes, "the stormy petrel of Kentucky's earlier years," a most remarkable man from several points of view. His History of Kentucky,[Pg 28] in either edition, is rather scarce at this time, and it is not to be found in many of the rare book shops of the country. Humphrey Marshall died at Lexington, Kentucky, July 3, 1841. He lies buried upon the banks of the Kentucky river, near the capitol of the Commonwealth, Frankfort.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Life and Times of Hon. Humphrey Marshall, by A. C. Quisenberry (Winchester, Kentucky, 1892).


[From The History of Kentucky (Frankfort, Kentucky, 1824, v. i)]

The country, once seen, held out abundant inducements to be re-visited, and better known. Among the circumstances best adapted to engage the attention, and impress the feelings of the adventurous hunters of North Carolina, may be selected the uncommon fertility of the soil, and the great abundance of wild game, so conspicuous at that time. And we are assured that the effect lost nothing of the cause. Forests those hunters had seen—mountains they had ascended—valleys they had traversed—deer they had killed—and bears they had successfully hunted. They had heard the howl of the wolf; the whine of the panther; and the heart-rending yell of the savage man; with correspondent sensations of delight, or horror. But these were all lost to memory, in the contemplation of Kentucky; animated with all the enchanting variety, and adorned with all the majestic grace and boldness of nature's creative energy. To nature's children, she herself is eloquent, and affecting. Never before had the feelings of these rude hunters experienced so much of the pathetic, the sublime, or the marvellous. Their arrival on the plains of Elkhorn was in the dawn of summer; when the forests, composed of oaks of various kinds, of ash, of walnut, cherry, buck-eye, hackberry, sugar trees, locust, sycamore, coffee tree, and an indefinite number of other trees, towering aloft to the clouds, overspread the luxuriant undergrowth, with their daily shade; while beneath, the class of trees—the shrubs, the cane, the herbage, and the different kinds of grass, and clover, interspersed with flowers, filled the eye, and overlaid the soil, with the forest's richest carpet.[Pg 29] The soil itself, more unctuous and fertile than Egypt's boasted Delta, from her maternal bosom, gave copious nutriment; and in rich exuberance sustained the whole, in matchless verdure.

Here it was, if Pan ever existed, that without the aid of fiction, he held his sole dominion, and Sylvan empire, unmolested by Ceres, or Lucina, for centuries.

The proud face of creation here presented itself, without the disguise of art. No wood had been felled; no field cleared; no human habitation raised: even the red man of the forest had not put up his wigwam of poles and bark for habitation. But that mysterious Being, whose productive power we call Nature, ever bountiful, and ever great—had not spread out this replete and luxurious pasture without stocking it with numerous flocks and herds: nor were their ferocious attendants, who prey upon them, wanting, to fill up the circle of created beings. Here was seen the timid deer; the towering elk; the fleet stag; the surly bear; the crafty fox; the ravenous wolf; the devouring panther; the insidious wild-cat; and the haughty buffaloe: besides innumerable other creatures, winged, fourfooted, or creeping. And here, at some time unknown, had been, for his bones are yet here, the leviathan of the forest, the monstrous mammoth; whose trunk, like that of the famous Trojan horse, would have held an host of men; and whose teeth, nine feet in length, inflicted death and destruction, on both animals and vegetable substances—until exhausting all within its range, itself became extinct. Nor is it known, although the race must have abounded in the country, from the great number of bones belonging to the species, found in different places, that there is one of the kind living on the American continent, if in the universe.

[Pg 30]


Stephen Theodore Badin, Kentucky's earliest Catholic bard, was born at Orleans, France, in 1768. Though very poor he received a classical and theological training in Paris and Tours; and in 1792 he emigrated to America. In the following year Badin was ordained by Bishop John Carroll at Baltimore, he being the first Roman Catholic priest ordained in the United States. He was subsequently appointed to do missionary work in Kentucky, which was then in the old Baltimore diocese, and he made his home at Georgetown, Kentucky. During the next few years Badin rode more than one hundred thousand miles on horseback in order to meet all of his appointments. He was then the only Catholic priest in Kentucky, though he did have assistants from time to time. In 1797 Badin was made vicar-general, and the large Catholic emigrations from Maryland to Kentucky about this time greatly increased his labors. His Principles of Catholics (1805) was the first Catholic book published in the West, and it gave him a larger audience than his voice could well reach. Badin later organized missions and built churches in Louisville and Lexington, St. Peter's in Lexington being made possible by the generosity of his Protestant friends, of whom he had many. Badin and Bishop Benedict Joseph Flaget, of the Bardstown diocese, had a misunderstanding as to the settlement of titles to certain church properties which Badin had acquired before Flaget came to Kentucky, and, rather than to have an acrimonious argument with the Bishop, he quit Kentucky, in 1819, and spent the next nine years in European travel. From 1830 to 1836 he worked among the Pottawatomie Indians in Indiana with marked success. Father Badin died at Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1853. He was the author of several Latin poems in hexameters, among them being Carmen Sacrum, a translation of which was[Pg 31] published at Frankfort; Epicedium, an elegy upon the death of Col. Joseph Hamilton Daviess at the battle of Tippecanoe; and Sanctissimae Trinitatis Laudes et Invocatis (Louisville, 1843). His brief in memoriam for Colonel Daviess is his best known work and, perhaps, his masterpiece.

Bibliography. Sketches of Early Catholic Missions in Kentucky, by M. J. Spalding (Louisville, 1846); The Centenary of Catholicity in Kentucky, by B. J. Webb (Louisville, 1884).


In Gloriosam Mortem
Magnanimi Equitum Ducis
Joseph Hamilton Daviess, Patrii Amoris Victimæ
In Tippecanoe Pugna ad Amnem
Wabaschum, 7. Die Nov. 1811.
Honorabili Viro Joanni Rowan
Meo Ipsiusque Amico Dicatum.

[From The Kentucky Gazette (February 18, 1812)]

Autumnus felix aderat granaria complens
Frugibus; umbrosas patulis jam frondibus ulmos
Exuerat brumœ proprior, cum Fama per orbem
Non rumore vago fatalia nuncia defert:
"Sub specie pacis Slyvæcola perfidus atra
"Nocte viros inopino plumbo occidit et hasta;
"Dux equitum triplici confossus vulnere, fortis
"Occubuit; turmœ hostiles periere fugatœ,
"Hostilesque casas merito ultrix flamma voravit."
Mensibus Æstivis portenderat ista Cometes
Funera; Terra quatit repetitis motibus; ægre
Volvit sanguineas Wabaschus tardior undas
Ingeminant Dryades suspiria longa; Hymenœus
Deficit audita clade, et solatia spernit
Omnia; triste silet Musarum turba; fidelis
Luget Amicities, lugubri tegmine vestit
[Pg 32] Et caput et lævam, desiderioque dalentis
Non pudor aut modus est. Lacrymas at fundere inanes
Quid juvat? Heu lacrymis nil Fata moventur acerba!
Ergo piæ Themidis meliora oracula poscunt
Unanimes; diram causam Themis aure benigna
Excipit, et mox decretum pronunciat œquum:
"Davidis effigies nostra appendatur in aula;
"Tempora sacra viri quercus civilis adornet,
"Ac non immeritam jungat Victoria laurum.
"Signa sui Legislator det publica luctus;
Historiœ chartis referat memorabile Clio.
"Prælium, et alta locum cyparissus contegat umbra.
"Tristis Hymen pretiosa urna cor nobile servet;
"Marmoreo reliquos cineres sincera sepulcro
"Condat Amicities; præsens venturaque laudet
"Ætas magnanimum David, virtute potentem
"Eloquii, belli et pacis decus immortale."
Vita habet angustos fines, et gloria nullos:
Qui patriœ reddunt vitam, illi morte nec ipsa
Vincuntur; virtutum exempla nepotibus extant.
Pro Patria vitam profundere maxima laus est.
Stephanus Theodorus Badin,
Cathol. Mission.        

Moerens canebat 15. Dec. 1811.


[From the same]

On the glorious death of Joseph Hamilton Daviess, Commander
of the Horse, who fell a victim to his love of country, in
the late battle on the Wabash, the 7th. Nov., 1811.
Dedicated to John Rowan, Esq.

'Twas late in autumn, and the thrifty swain
In spacious barns secur'd the golden grain;
November's chilly mornings breath'd full keen;
No leafy honors crown'd the sylvan scene.
When Fame with those sad tidings quickly flew
Throughout our land; (her tale, alas! too true):
[Pg 33] "The savage Indian, our perfidious foe,
Pretending peace with hypocritic show,
Surpris'd our legions in the dead of night
And urg'd with lead and steel the mortal fight;
Our valiant warriors strew th' ensanguin'd plain,
Ev'n our great Captain of the Horse is slain
With triple wound!!! At length the foe retires,
With loss; and leaves his town to our avenging fires."
When summer gilded our nocturnal sky
With astral gems; a comet blazed on high,
Portentous of these fates!—the earth, in throes
Repeated labors; rueful Wabash flows
With slower current, stain'd with mingling blood!
The Dryads fill with plaints the echoing wood!
Hymen, the slaughter heard, dissolves in grief!
Naught can console him, naught can yield relief.
In woeful silence sits the muses' train
And Friendship mourns her fav'rite hero slain.
The funeral crape, vain badge of grief! she wears
Upon her head, her arms the emblem bears,
Her sorrowing mind no moderation knows,
Admits no measure to her boundless woes.
Ah, what avails the vain expense of tears?
Fate still unmov'd this fruitless anguish bears!
Therefore to Themis' shrine, with one accord,
They come to crave a more benign award.
The direful cause the attentive Goddess hears,
And soon this just decree her record bears:
"Let Daviess still in semblance grace my halls,
Let his bright portraiture adorn my walls;
The civic oak his sacred brows entwine,
And vict'ry to the wreath his laurel join.
Let Legislative acts of mourning show
The voted ensigns of the public woe;
In the historic page be ever read
The fierce encounter, when great Daviess bled,
[Pg 34] And be the fatal spot with cypress shade o'erspread;
His noble heart let Hymen's care enclose
In the rich urn, and friendship's hand compose
His other relics in the marble tomb.
Then let the ages present and to come
Just praises render to his glorious name;
Let honor'd Daviess gild the page of fame,
A hero, fit a nation's pow'r to wield,
In council wise, and mighty in the field."
His mortal life a narrow space confines,
But glory with unbounded lustre shines.
Those virtuous souls, who shed their noble blood
A willing off'ring to the public good,
Who to their country's welfare freely give
The sacrifice of life, forever live
As bright examples to the unborn brave,
To shew how virtue rescues from the grave.
The noblest act the patriot's fame can tell,
Is, that he bravely for his country fell.
Thus sung the missionary bard, and paid
This mournful tribute to the mighty dead.


Dr. Charles Caldwell, versatile and voluminous writer of prose, was born at Caswell, North Carolina, May 14, 1772. He entered the medical school of the University of Pennsylvania, in 1792; and he won the city's gratitude in the following year by his medical services during the yellow fever epidemic. In 1810 Dr. Caldwell became professor of natural history in the University of Pennsylvania; and four years later he succeeded Nicholas Biddle (1786-1844) as editor of The Port-Folio, a Philadelphia magazine of high character. In 1819 Dr. Caldwell[Pg 35] came to Lexington, Kentucky, to accept the chair of materia medica in Transylvania University. Some months later he was sent to Europe to purchase books and apparatus for his department. He returned to Transylvania and continued there until 1837, when he removed to Louisville and established a medical institute. Some years later he and the trustees disagreed and he left. After leaving the institute, Dr. Caldwell continued to reside at Louisville, in which city he died, July 9, 1853. Dr. Caldwell was the first distinguished American practitioner of phrenology, if he did not actually discover this alleged science. From 1794 until his death, Dr. Caldwell was an indefatigable literary worker. He was the author of more than two hundred pamphlets, essays, and books. He translated Blumenbach's Elements of Physiology (1795); Bachtiar Nameh (1813), a Persian tale which he translated from the Arabic; edited Cullen's Practice of Physic (1816); Memoirs of the Life and Campaigns of the Hon. [General] Greene (Philadelphia, 1819); Elements of Phrenology (1824); A Discourse on the Genius and Character of the Rev. Horace Holley, LL.D., late President of Transylvania University (Boston, 1828); and Thoughts and Experiments on Mesmerism (1842).

Bibliography. His Autobiography (Philadelphia, 1855), published posthumously, has been regarded by many as an unfortunate work, as in it he made some rather severe pictures of his contemporaries. That the work contains much excellent writing, and is often very happy in the descriptions of the country through which the author passed, no one has arisen to gainsay; Autobiography of Samuel D. Gross, M. D. (Philadelphia, 1887, v. ii).


[From Memoirs of the Life and Campaigns of the Hon. Nathaniel Greene (Philadelphia, 1819)]

Nathaniel Greene, although descended from ancestors of elevated standing, was not indebted to the condition of his family[Pg 36] for any part of the real lustre and reputation he possessed. As truly as is the case with any individual, he was the founder of his own fortune, and the author of his own fame. He was the second son of Nathaniel Greene, an anchor-smith, of considerable note, who is believed to have had the earliest establishment of the kind erected in America, and, by persevering industry in the line of his profession, an extensive and lucrative concern in iron-works, and some success in commercial transactions, had acquired a sufficiency to render him comfortable, if not wealthy.

He was born in the year 1741, in the town of Warwick, and county of Kent, in the province of Rhode Island. As far as is known, his childhood passed without any peculiar or unequivocal indications of future greatness. But this is a point of little moment. The size of the oak it is destined to produce, can rarely be foretold from an examination of the acorn. Nor is it often that any well defined marks of genius in the child afford a premonition of the eminence of the man.

Several of his contemporaries, however, who are still living, have a perfect recollection that young Greene had neither the appearance nor manners of a common boy; nor was he so considered by his elder, and more discerning acquaintance.

[Pg 37]

Being intended by his father for the business which he had himself pursued, young Greene received at school nothing but the elements of a common English education. But, to himself, an acquisition so humble and limited, was unsatisfactory and mortifying. Even now, his aim was lofty; and he had a noble ambition, not only to embark in high pursuits, but to qualify himself for a manly and honourable acquittance in them. Seeming, at this early period of life, to realize the important truth that, knowledge is power, a desire to obtain it became, in a short time, his ruling passion.

He accordingly procured, in part by his own economy, the necessary books, and, at intervals of leisure, acquired, chiefly without the aid of an instructor, a competent acquaintance with the Latin tongue.

This attainment, respectable in itself, was only preliminary to higher efforts. With such funds as he was able to raise, he purchased a small, but well selected library, and spent his evenings, and all the time he could redeem from business, in regular study. He read with a view to general improvement; but geography, travels, and military history—the latter, more especially—constituted his delight. Having, also, a predilection for mathematics and mechanical philosophy, and pursuing, in most cases, the bent of his inclination, as far as prudence and opportunity would admit, his knowledge, in the more practical departments of these sciences, became highly respectable.


Allan Bowie Magruder, poet and historian, was born in Kentucky, about 1775. He received an academic education, studied law, and was admitted to the Lexington bar in 1797. He contributed very fair verse to the Kentucky Gazette in 1802 and 1803, which attracted considerable comment in the West. That his fame as a poet was wide-spread, is indicated by a letter from an Ohio writer published in the Lexington Intelligencer, January 28, 1834, in which Magruder's verse is highly praised and further information concerning his career is sought. After stabbing poor Tom Johnson's little pamphlet of rhymes to the heart, Magruder is placed upon his pedestal as the first real Kentucky poet; and that his work was superior to either Johnson's or George Beck's is obvious, continues the caustic correspondent. The truth is, of course, that the verses of neither of the three men merit mention for anything save their priority; and the young Lexington lawyer's muse was not as productive as Tom's or Beck's, no more than three or four of his poems having come down to us. His first prose work was entitled Reflections on the late Cession of Louisiana to the United States (Lexington, 1803). This little volume of 150 pages[Pg 38] was issued by Daniel Bradford, for whose periodical, The Medley, Magruder wrote The Character of Thomas Jefferson (June; July, 1803). This essay attracted the attention of the President, and he appointed Magruder commissioner of lands in Louisiana, to which territory he shortly afterwards removed. He was later a member of the State legislature; and from November 18, 1812, to March 3, 1813, Magruder was United States Senator from his adopted State. The next few years he devoted to collecting materials for a history of the North American Indians; and he also made notes for many years for a history of Kentucky, which he finally abandoned, and which he turned over to his old friend, John Bradford, who made use of them in his Notes on Kentucky. Allan B. Magruder died at Opelousas, Louisiana, April 16, 1822, when but forty-seven years of age. He was a man of culture and of high promise, but once in the politics of the country his early literary triumphs were not repeated, and he appears to have never done any writing worth while after his removal from Kentucky.

Bibliography. The Lexington Intelligencer (Lexington, Kentucky, January 28, 1834); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. iv).


[From The Medley (Lexington, Ky., July, 1803)]

When Citizen Genet, the ex-minister of the Robesperian fanaticism, appeared in America, he attempted to impose his new philosophy of light and liberty upon the government. He had nothing to boast of, on the score of superior diplomatic skill. His communications to the secretary of state, were evidently of the tampering kind. They were impressed with all the marks of that enthusiastic insanity, which regulated the councils of the faction; and which, were calculated to mistake their object, by disgusting their intended victims. The mind of Mr. Jefferson, discovered itself, in an early period of his correspondence with[Pg 39] the French minister. The communications of Genet were decorated with all the flowers of eloquence, without the force and conviction of rhetorical energy. Accustomed to diplomatic calculation, and intimately combining cause with effect, Mr. Jefferson apprehended the subject, with strength and precision; considered it—developed it—viewed it on all sides—listened to every appeal, and attended to every charge—and in every communication, burst forth with a strength of refutation, that at once detected and embarrassed, the disappointed minister of a wily and fanatic faction.

It is, in most instances, useless to oppose enthusiasm with the deliberate coolness of reason and argument. They are the antipodes of each other; and of that imperious nature, which mutually solicit triumph and disdain reconciliation. The tyranny of the Robesperian principles, were calculated to inveigle within the vortex of European politics, the American government and people. The coolness and sagacity of the secretary of state, composed their defence and protection. The appeal was mutually made to the government; and it is a fortunate circumstance, that there existed this tribunal to approbate the measures of the secretary, and to silence forever, the declamatory oracle of an insidious faction. Checked and defeated on all sides, his doctrines stripped of their visionary principles, and himself betrayed into the labyrinth of diplomatic mystery, their ex-divinity, shrank into the silence of contempt; declaring with his last breath, that Mr. Jefferson was the only man in America, whose talents he highly respected.


Henry Clay, the most famous Kentuckian ever born, first saw the light in the "Slashes," Hanover county, Virginia, April 12, 1777. When twenty years of age, he settled in Lexington, Kentucky, as a lawyer; and Lexington was his home henceforth. In 1803 Henry Clay was elected to the State legislature; and before he was[Pg 40] thirty years old he was filling an unexpired term in the United States Senate. In 1811 he was sent to the National House of Representatives from the old Lexington district. He was immediately chosen Speaker of that body, a position to which he was subsequently elected five times. This was the period of his greatest speeches. His utterances upon American rights did much to bring about the War of 1812. In 1814 Henry Clay went to Europe as a peace commissioner, and the Treaty of Ghent was signed on December 24, 1814. He had resigned the Speakership in order to go to Ghent, but on his return in 1815, he found himself reëlected; and he presided as Speaker until 1820, declining two diplomatic posts and two cabinet offices in order to continue in the chair. In 1820 Henry Clay advocated the Missouri Compromise, and a short time afterwards he retired from public life to devote his attention to his private affairs. He was, however, in 1823, again elected to the lower House of Congress, and was again chosen Speaker, serving as such until 1825. In 1824 he announced himself as a candidate for president, but he was defeated by John Quincy Adams, who made him his Secretary of State. Andrew Jackson was elected president, in 1828, and Mr. Clay—to give him the name he was always known by, regardless of the many positions he held—once more retired from American politics. In 1831 the people elected him United States Senator from Kentucky, and in that body he fought Jackson's policies so strenuously that the Whig party was born, with Mr. Clay as its legitimate parent. The Whigs nominated him as their first candidate for president, but he was overwhelmingly defeated by his old-time enemy, Andrew Jackson. He was the author of the Compromise tariff of 1832-1833, which did much toward winning him the sobriquet of the "Great Compromiser." Mr. Clay was reëlected to the Senate, in 1837; and two years later his great debates[Pg 41] with John C. Calhoun took place. Late in this year of 1839, the Whig political bosses set him aside and nominated William Henry Harrison for president and he was elected. In 1842 Henry Clay was retired to private life for the third time, but two years later he was again the candidate of the Whigs for president, and he was defeated by a comparatively unknown man, James K. Polk of Tennessee—the only Speaker of the House who has ever been elected president of the United States. The year of 1849 found Henry Clay once more in the Senate, but he was now old and very feeble. The great Compromise of 1850 sapped his rapidly waning strength, though it greatly added to his fame as a statesman. On June 29, 1852, Henry Clay died at Washington City, in the seventy-sixth year of his age. His body was brought back to the land he loved so well, and to which he had brought world-wide fame, and was buried at Lexington, where a grateful people have erected a cloud-tipped monument to his memory. He is one of the American immortals, though it is not at all difficult to quarrel with many of his public acts. He carried the name and fame of Kentucky into the remotest corners of the universe, and it would be indeed surprising if it were not possible to find flaws in a record that was as long as his. His connection with the Graves-Cilley duel in 1838 appears unpardonable at this time, but perhaps the whole truth regarding this infamous affair has not yet been brought out. Considering the patent fact that few orators can stand the printed page, and that the methods by which Clay's addresses were preserved were crude and unsatisfactory, many of the speeches are very readable even unto this day. They undoubtedly prove, however, that the man behind them, and not the manner or matter of them, was the thing that made Henry Clay the most lovable character in American history.

[Pg 42]

Bibliography. There are many biographies of Clay, and numerous collections of his speeches. Carl Schurz's Henry Clay (Boston, 1887, two vols.), is the best account of the statesman; Henry Clay, by Thomas H. Clay (Philadelphia, 1910), is adequate for Clay the man; and Daniel Mallory's Life and Speeches of the Hon. Henry Clay (New York, 1844), is the finest collection of his speeches made hitherto.


[From The Life and Speeches of the Hon. Henry Clay, edited by Daniel Mallory (New York, 1844, v. i., 4th edition)]

Sir, I am growing old. I have had some little measure of experience in public life, and the result of that experience has brought me to this conclusion, that when business, of whatever nature, is to be transacted in a deliberative assembly, or in private life, courtesy, forebearance, and moderation, are best calculated to bring it to a successful conclusion. Sir, my age admonishes me to abstain from involving myself in personal difficulties; would to God that I could say, I am also restrained by higher motives. I certainly never sought any collision with the gentleman from Virginia. My situation at this time is peculiar, if it be nothing else, and might, I should think, dissuade, at least, a generous heart from any wish to draw me into circumstances of personal altercation. I have experienced this magnanimity from some quarters of the house. But I regret, that from others it appears to have no such consideration. The gentleman from Virginia was pleased to say, that in one point at least he coincided with me—in an humble estimate of my grammatical and philological acquirements, I know my deficiencies. I was born to no proud patrimonial estate; from my father I inherited only infancy, ignorance, and indigence. I feel my defects; but, so[Pg 43] far as my situation in early life is concerned, I may, without presumption, say they are more my misfortune than my fault. But, however I regret my want of ability to furnish to the gentleman a better specimen of powers of verbal criticism, I will venture to say, it is not greater than the disappointment of this committee as to the strength of his argument.


[From the same]


The house of representatives of the United States, impelled alike by its own feelings, and by those of the whole American people, could not have assigned to me a more gratifying duty than that of presenting to you cordial congratulations upon the occasion of your recent arrival in the United States, in compliance with the wishes of Congress, and to assure you of the very high satisfaction which your presence affords on this early theatre of your glory and renown. Although but few of the members who compose this body shared with you in the war of our revolution, all have, from impartial history, or from faithful tradition, a knowledge of the perils, the sufferings, and the sacrifices, which you voluntarily encountered, and the signal services, in America and in Europe, which you performed for an infant, a distant, and an alien people; and all feel and own the very great extent of the obligations under which you have placed our country. But the relations in which you have ever stood to the United States, interesting and important as they have been, do not constitute the only motive of the respect and admiration which the house of representatives entertain for you. Your consistency of character, your uniform devotion to regulated liberty, in all the vicissitudes of a long and arduous life, also commands its admiration. During all the recent convulsions of Europe, amidst, as after the dispersion of, every political storm, the people of the United States have beheld you, true to your old principles, firm and erect, cheering and animating with your well-known voice, the votaries of liberty, its faithful and fearless champion, ready to shed the last drop of that blood which here you so freely and nobly spilt, in the same holy cause.

[Pg 44]

The vain wish has been sometimes indulged, that Providence would allow the patriot, after death, to return to his country, and to contemplate the intermediate changes which had taken place; to view the forest felled, the cities built, the mountains levelled, the canals cut, the highways constructed, the progress of the arts, advancement of learning, and the increase of population. General, your present visit to the United States is a realization of the consoling object of that wish. You are in the midst of posterity. Every where, you must have been struck with the great changes, physical and moral, which have occurred since you left us. Even this very city, bearing a venerated name, alike endeared to you and to us, has since emerged from the forest which then covered its site. In one respect you behold us unaltered, and this is in the sentiment of continued devotion to liberty, and of ardent affection and profound gratitude to your departed friend, the father of his country, and to you, and to your illustrious associates in the field and in the cabinet, for the multiplied blessings which surround us, and for the very privilege of addressing you which I now exercise. This sentiment, now fondly cherished by more than ten millions of people, will be transmitted, with unabated vigor, down the tide of time, through the countless millions who are destined to inhabit this continent, to the latest posterity.[5]

[Pg 45]


John James Audubon, the celebrated ornithologist, was born at Mandeville, Louisiana, May 5, 1780. He was educated in France under private tutors, but his consuming love of Nature and especially of bird-life, was too strong to keep him in a beaten path of study, so most of his time was spent in the woods and fields. When seventeen years old Audubon returned to the United States to settle upon his father's estate, "Mill Grove," near Philadelphia. There he devoted his entire time to hunting, fishing, drawing, and music. Some months later he met and fell in love with his nearest neighbor, Lucy Bakewell, a young English girl. "Too young and too useless to be married," as he himself afterwards wrote, his about-to-be father-in-law, William Bakewell, advised Audubon to become a New York business man. With his friend, Ferdinand Rozier, whom he had met in France, and who was then connected with a French firm in Philadelphia, he visited Kentucky, late in 1806, "thought well of it, and liked it exceedingly." But his great love of Nature was not to be denied, and his business suffered accordingly. On April 8, 1808, Audubon was married to Miss Bakewell, and the next morning left for Pittsburgh, where he and his bride, accompanied by Rozier, floated down the Ohio river in a flatboat, which was their bridal tour, with Louisville, Kentucky, as their destination. Upon reaching Louisville Audubon and Rozier opened a large store which prospered when Audubon attended to it; "but birds were birds then as now, and my thoughts were ever and anon turning toward them as the objects of my greatest delight." His first child, Victor, was born at Louisville, in 1809. Rozier conducted the store, and Audubon spent his days in "the darling forests." In 1810 Alexander Wilson, the Scotch ornithologist and poet, called upon Audubon at his store in Louisville hoping to obtain his subscription to his[Pg 46] work upon American birds, but Audubon showed him birds he had never seen before, which seemingly angered the Scot as he afterwards wrote slightingly of the Kentucky naturalist. Late in 1810 Audubon and Rozier removed their stock of goods to Henderson, Kentucky, where their trade was so poor that Rozier was left behind the counter, while Audubon was compelled to fish and hunt for food. A short time after their arrival in Henderson, the two partners decided to move to St. Genevieve on the Mississippi river, but Audubon disliked the community, sold out to Rozier, and returned to his home in Henderson. His second son, John Woodhouse, was born at Henderson, in 1812. Two daughters were also born at Henderson, the first of whom, Lucy, died in infancy and was buried in her father's garden. His pecuniary affairs were now greatly reduced, but he continued to draw birds and quadrupeds. He disposed of Mill Grove and opened a small store in Henderson, which prospered and put him on his feet again. Audubon was doing so finely in business now that he purchased a small farm and was adding to it from time to time. His brother-in-law, Thomas Bakewell, arrived at Henderson about 1816, and finally persuaded Audubon to erect a steam-mill on his property at a great expense. For a time this mill did all the sawing for the country, but in the end it ruined Audubon and his partners. He left Henderson in 1819, after having resided in the town for nearly ten years, and set up as a portrait painter in Louisville, where he was very successful. From Louisville Audubon went to Cincinnati and from there to New Orleans. In October, 1823, he again settled at Louisville as a painter of "birds, landscapes, portraits, and even signs." His wife was the only person in the world who had any faith in his ultimate "arrival" as a famous naturalist, and the outlook was indeed[Pg 47] dark. Audubon quitted Louisville in March, 1824, and two years later he went to England, where the first public exhibition of his drawings was held. His first and most famous work, Birds of America, was published at London from 1827 to 1838, issued in numbers, each containing five plates, without text, the complete work consisting of four folio volumes. Audubon returned to America in 1829, and he was with his sons at Louisville for a short time, both of whom were engaged in business there. He went to New Orleans to see his wife, and together they came to Louisville, in 1830, to bid the "Kentucky lads," as he called them, goodbye, before sailing for England. At "the fair Edinburgh," in the fall of 1830, Audubon began the Ornithological Biographies (Edinburgh, 1831-39, 5 vols.), the text to the plates of the Birds. In 1840-44 the work was republished in seven volumes, text and plates together, as Birds of America. In 1831 Audubon and his wife returned to America, and they were again in Louisville with the boys for some time. In 1833 his famous trip to Labrador was taken, and the following year found the family in England. The next ten years were passed in wandering from country to country in search of birds, but, in 1842, Audubon purchased "Minniesland," now Audubon Park, New York. With his sons and the Rev. John Bachman he planned the Quadrupeds of America, the last volume of which was issued after his death, which occurred at "Minniesland" on January 27, 1851. His wife, who wrote his life, survived him many years, dying at Shelbyville, Kentucky, June 19, 1874, but she is buried by his side on the banks of the Hudson.

Bibliography. Life of John James Audubon, edited by his Widow (New York, 1869); Audubon and His Journals, edited by Maria R. Audubon (New York, 1900); John James Audubon, by John Burroughs (Boston, 1902).

[Pg 48]


[From Audubon and His Journals, edited by Maria R. Audubon (New York, 1900, v. ii)]

When my wife, my eldest son (then an infant), and myself were returning from Pennsylvania to Kentucky, we found it expedient, the waters being unusually low, to provide ourselves with a skiff, to enable us to proceed to our abode at Henderson. I purchased a large, commodious, and light boat of that denomination. We procured a mattress, and our friends furnished us with ready prepared viands. We had two stout negro rowers, and in this trim we left the village of Shippingport [now within the corporate limits of Louisville], in expectation of reaching the place of our destination in a very few days.

It was in the month of October. The autumnal tints already decorated the shores of that queen of rivers, the Ohio. Every tree was hung with long and flowing festoons of different species of vines, many loaded with clustered fruits of varied brilliancy, their rich bronzed carmine mingling beautifully with the yellow foliage which now predominated over the yet green leaves, reflecting more lively tints from the clear stream than ever landscape painter portrayed, or poet imagined. The days were yet warm. The sun had assumed the rich and glowing hue which at that season produces the singular phenomenon called there the "Indian Summer." The moon had rather passed the meridian of her grandeur. We glided down the river, meeting no other ripple of the water than that formed by the propulsion of our boat. Leisurely we moved along, gazing all day on the grandeur and beauty of the wild scenery around us.

Now and then a large catfish rose to the surface of the water, in pursuit of a shoal of fry, which, starting simultaneously from the liquid element like so many silver arrows, produced a shower of light, while the pursuer with open jaws seized the stragglers, and, with a splash of his tail, disappeared from our view. Other fishes we heard, uttering beneath our bark a rumbling noise, the strange sound of which we discovered to proceed from the white perch, for on casting our net from the bow, we caught several of that species, when the noise ceased for a time.

[Pg 49]

Nature, in her varied arrangements, seems to have felt a partiality towards this portion of our country. As the traveler ascends or descends the Ohio, he cannot help remarking that alternately, nearly the whole length of the river, the margin, on one side, is bounded by lofty hills and a rolling surface, while on the other, extensive plains of the richest alluvial land are seen as far as the eye can command the view. Islands of varied size and form rise here and there from the bosom of the water, and the winding course of the stream frequently brings you to places where the idea of being on a river of great length changes to that of floating on a lake of moderate extent. Some of these islands are of considerable size and value; while others, small and insignificant, seem as if intended for contrast, and as serving to enhance the general interest of the scenery. These little islands are frequently overflowed during great freshets or floods, and receive at their heads prodigious heaps of drifted timber. We foresaw with great concern the alterations that cultivation would soon produce along those delightful banks.

As night came, sinking in darkness the broader portions of the river, our minds became affected by strong emotions, and wandered far beyond the present moments. The tinkling of bells told us that the cattle which bore them were gently roving from valley to valley in search of food, or returning to their distant homes. The hooting of the Great Owl, or the muffled noise of its wings, as it sailed smoothly over the stream, were matters of interest to us; so was the sound of the boatman's horn, as it came winding more and more softly from afar. When daylight returned, many songsters burst forth with echoing notes, more and more mellow to the listening ear. Here and there the lonely cabin of a squatter struck the eye, giving note of commencing civilization. The crossing of the stream by a Deer foretold how soon the hills would be covered with snow.

Many sluggish flatboats we overtook and passed; some laden with produce from the different head-waters of the small rivers that pour their tributary streams into the Ohio; others, of less dimensions, crowded with emigrants from distant parts, in search of a new home. Purer pleasures I never felt; nor have[Pg 50] you, reader, I ween, unless indeed you have felt the like, and in such company.

The margins of the shores and of the river were, at this season amply supplied with game. A Wild Turkey, a Grouse, or a Blue-winged Teal, could be procured in a few moments; and we fared well, for, whenever we pleased we landed, struck up a fire, and provided as we were with the necessary utensils, procured a good repast.

Several of these happy days passed, and we neared our home, when, one evening, not far from Pigeon Creek (a small stream which runs into the Ohio from the State of Indiana), a loud and strange noise was heard, so like the yells of Indian warfare, that we pulled at our oars, and made for the opposite side as fast and as quietly as possible. The sounds increased, we imagined we heard cries of "murder;" and as we knew that some depredations had lately been committed in the country by dissatisfied parties of aborigines, we felt for a while extremely uncomfortable. Ere long, however, our minds became more calmed, and we plainly discovered that the singular uproar was produced by an enthusiastic set of Methodists, who had wandered thus far out of the common way for the purpose of holding one of their annual camp-meetings, under the shade of a beech forest. Without meeting with any other interruption, we reached Henderson, distant from Shippingport, by water, about two hundred miles.

When I think of these times, and call back to my mind the grandeur and beauty of those almost uninhabited shores; when I picture to myself the dense and lofty summits of the forests, that everywhere spread along the hills and overhung the margins of the stream, unmolested by the axe of the settler; when I know how dearly purchased the safe navigation of that river has been, by the blood of many worthy Virginians; when I see that no longer any aborigines are to be found there, and that the vast herds of Elk, Deer, and Buffaloes which once pastured on these hills, and in these valleys, making for themselves great roads to the several salt-springs, have ceased to exist; when I reflect that all this grand portion of our Union, instead of being in a state of nature, is now more or less covered with villages, farms, and towns, where the din of hammers and machinery is constantly[Pg 51] heard; that the woods are fast disappearing under the axe by day, and the fire by night; that hundreds of steamboats are gliding to and fro, over the whole length of the majestic river, forcing commerce to take root and to prosper at every spot; when I see the surplus population of Europe coming to assist in the destruction of the forest, and transplanting civilization into its darkest recesses; when I remember that these extraordinary changes have all taken place in the short period of twenty years, I pause, wonder, and although I know all to be a fact, can scarcely believe its reality.

Whether these changes are for the better or for the worse, I shall not pretend to say; but in whatever way my conclusions may incline, I feel with regret that there are on record no satisfactory accounts of the state of that portion of the country, from the time when our people first settled in it. This has not been because no one in America is able to accomplish such an undertaking. Our Irvings and our Coopers have proved themselves fully competent for the task. It has more probably been because the changes have succeeded each other with such rapidity as almost to rival the movements of their pens. However, it is not too late yet; and I sincerely hope that either or both of them will ere long furnish the generations to come with those delightful descriptions which they are so well qualified to give, of the original state of a country that has been rapidly forced to change her form and attire under the influence of increasing population. Yes, I hope to read, ere I close my earthly career, accounts from those delightful writers of the progress of civilization in our Western Country. They will speak of the Clarks, the Croghans, the Boones, and many other men of great and daring enterprise. They will analyze, as it were, into each component part the country as it once existed, and will render the picture, as it ought to be, immortal.

[Pg 52]


Horace Holley, old Transylvania University's celebrated president, was born at Salisbury, Connecticut, February 13, 1781, the son of Luther Holley, a wealthy merchant. He was fitted at Williams College for Yale, from which institution he was graduated in 1803. Holley studied law in New York for awhile, but soon relinquished it for theology, which he returned to Yale to pursue. In 1805 he was appointed to his first pastorate. Going to Boston in 1809, as pastor of the Hollis Street Unitarian church, he at once made a great reputation for himself as an eloquent pulpit orator. Holley was at Hollis Street for nine years, during which time he was a member of the Board of Overseers of Harvard University, as well as a member of several civic boards. He was elected president of Transylvania University, of Lexington, in 1817, and he journeyed to Kentucky in the following spring, where he went carefully over the ground and finally decided to accept the position. He entered almost at once upon the most difficult task of converting a grammar school into a great university. Success soon crowned his efforts, however, and Transylvania took her place by the side of Harvard, Yale, and Princeton, as one of the higher seats of learning in the United States. In at least one year under the Holley régime, Transylvania had the largest student body in this country. The institution was as well known in New York or London, among scholars, as it was in the West. Several of the professors were men of national reputation, and the students came from all parts of the United States. Never before in the South or West has a seat of learning had higher hopes for the future, or greater success or reputation than had Transylvania under Horace Holley. Then the Kentucky Presbyterians and others launched Dame Rumor, freighted with falsehoods and misrepresentations galore. The president was charged with every[Pg 53] crime in the calendar: he was an atheist, an agnostic, a blasphemer, a wine-bibber, and all that was evil. The whole truth was this: he was a Unitarian, holding the Christ to be the greatest personality in history, but denying him as the very Son of God. This his prejudiced, ill-advised enemies were unable to understand. Driven to desperation by the bitter crusade that was being waged against him, Holley resigned, in March, 1827, after nine years of great success as head of the University, which after his departure, fell away to almost nothing. He went from Kentucky to Louisiana, where he endeavored to re-organize the College of New Orleans, and in which work he wore himself out. Late in the summer he and his wife took passage for New York, but he contracted yellow-fever, and, on July 31, 1827, he died. His body was consigned to the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, but his fame is secure as an American educator of distinguished ability. The finest bit of prose he ever wrote, perhaps, is contained in one of his Kentucky letters to his wife in Boston, written while he was in Lexington looking over the lay of the land, which, as subsequent events proved, he utterly failed to anticipate in its most dangerous and damning aspect.

Bibliography. A Discourse on the Genius and Character of the Rev. Horace Holley, LL. D., by Charles Caldwell, M. D. (Boston, 1828); More Colonial Homesteads, by Marion Harland (New York, 1899); Lore of the Meadowland, by J. W. Townsend (Lexington, Kentucky, 1911).


[From A Discourse on the Genius and Character of the Rev. Horace Holley, LL. D., by Charles Caldwell, M. D. (Boston, 1828)]

Lexington, May 27th, 1818.

I wrote a hasty letter to you on the night of my arrival. I shall now he able to speak a little more in detail.

The town and the vicinity are very handsome. The streets are[Pg 54] broad, straight, paved, clean, and have rows of trees on each side. The houses are of brick almost universally, many of them in the midst of fields, and have a very rural and charming appearance. The taste is for low houses, generally two, sometimes even but one story high, like English cottages. This taste gives an effect that eyes accustomed to the high buildings of an Atlantic city, where there is but little room, are not at first pleased with. But it is a taste adapted to the circumstances, and to me is not unpleasant.

I have taken lodgings at the principal hotel of the place, where I have a drawing-room to receive calls, which were yesterday until dinner almost innumerable.... In the afternoon I walked about town with Mr. Clay, and called at a few charming houses. I visited also the Athenaeum, an institution not yet furnished with many books, but well supplied with newspapers, and the best periodicals. I find everything of this sort, which is valuable, from Boston and the other Atlantic cities.

This morning I breakfasted at Mr. Clay's, who lives a mile and a half from town. He arrived here only three days before me. Ashland is a very pleasant place, handsomer than I anticipated. The grounds are beautiful, the lawns and walks extensive, the shrubbery luxuriant, and the garden well supplied. The native forest of ash in the rear adds a charming effect to the whole. After breakfast Mr. Clay rode in with me, and we went with the trustees, by appointment, to the college, to visit the professors and students. They were all collected in the largest hall to receive us. I made a short address, which was received in a kind manner. I was then conducted to the library, the apparatus, and the recitation rooms. The library is small, and the apparatus smaller. There is no regular division of students into classes as in other colleges, and but few laws. Everything is to be done, and so much the better, as nothing is to be reformed. Almost the whole is proposed to be left to me to arrange. I am now making all necessary inquiries, and a meeting of the trustees is to be called next week.

After this visit, I went with a party of ladies and gentlemen, nine miles into the country to the seat of Colonel [David] Meade [1744-1838] where we dined and passed the day. This gentleman, who is near seventy, is a Virginian of the old school. He[Pg 55] has been a good deal in England, in his youth, and brought home with him English notions of a country seat, though he is a great republican in politics. He and his wife dress in the costume of the olden time. He has the square coat and great cuffs, the vest of the court, short breeches, and white stockings, at all times. Mrs. Meade has the long waist, the white apron, the stays, the ruffles about the elbows, and the cap of half a century ago. She is very mild and ladylike, and though between sixty and seventy, plays upon the piano-forte with the facility and cheerfulness of a young lady. Her husband resembles Colonel Pickering in the face, and the shape of the head. He is entirely a man of leisure, never having followed any business, and never using his fortune but in adorning his place and entertaining his friends and strangers. No word is ever sent to him that company is coming. To do so offends him. But a dinner—he dines at the hour of four—is always ready for visitors; and servants are always in waiting. Twenty of us went out today, without warning, and were entertained luxuriously on the viands of the country. Our drink consisted of beer, toddy, and water. Wine, being imported and expensive, he never gives; nor does he allow cigars to be smoked in his presence. His house consists of a cluster of rustic cottages, in front of which spreads a beautiful, sloping lawn, as smooth as velvet. From this diverge, in various direction, and forming vistas terminated by picturesque objects, groves and walks extending over some acres. Seats, Chinese temples, verdant banks, and alcoves are interspersed at convenient distances. The lake, over which presides a Grecian temple, that you may imagine to be the residence of the water nymphs, has in it a small island, which communicates with the shore by a white bridge of one arch. The whole is surrounded by a low rustic fence of stone, surmounted and almost hidden by honey-suckle and roses, now in full flower, and which we gathered in abundance to adorn the ladies. Everything is laid out for walking and pleasure. His farm he rents, and does nothing for profit. The whole is in rustic taste. You enter from the road, through a gate between rude and massive columns, a field without pretension, wind a considerable distance through a noble park to an inner gate, the capitals to whose pillars are unique, being formed of the roots of trees, carved by[Pg 56] nature. Then the rich scene of cultivation, of verdure and flower-capped hedges, bursts upon you. There is no establishment like this in our country. Instead of a description, I might have given you its name, "Chaumiere du Prairies."


Constantine Samuel Rafinesque, the learned, eccentric scientist of Kentucky and the West, was born near Constantinople, Turkey, October 22, 1783. He was of French-German descent. His boyhood years were spent in Italy and in traveling on the Continent. Rafinesque came to America in 1802, and he remained in this country but three years, when he returned to Italy; and there the subsequent ten years of his life were passed. In 1809 he married, after a fashion, a Sicilian woman, Josephine Vaccaro, who bore him two children. Rafinesque returned to America in 1815, and a short time after his arrival, he met his former friend, John D. Clifford, of Philadelphia and Lexington—twin-towns in those days—"the only man he ever loved," who persuaded him to come out to Kentucky. At Henderson, Kentucky, Rafinesque met the great Audubon, who took him under his roof, and who told him many amusing tales of the fishes of the Ohio—which the little scientist believed, as coming from a famous man—and which caused him no end of trouble and work in after years. Audubon ridiculed him to his face, which the simple-minded man could not understand; and in his Journals the ornithologist has much fun at his guest's expense. That he treated him very badly, no one can deny. Through Clifford's influence, probably, Rafinesque was appointed, in 1819, to the chair of natural science and modern languages in Transylvania University. This was during the presidency of Horace Holley,[Pg 57] when the old University was at the high-tide of its history, but the diminutive scientist, though heralded as "the most learned man in America," was not received as such in the Blue Grass region of Kentucky an hundred years ago. From the president down to the children of the little city he was looked upon as an impossible creature. Seven of the best years of his life were spent in the service of the University and of the town. His boldest dream for the town was a Botanical Garden, modeled upon the gardens of France, and though he did actually make a splendid start toward this ideal, in the end all his plans came to nothing. In June, 1825, Rafinesque left Lexington, never to return. He went to Philadelphia, where the remaining fifteen years of his life were spent. Death discovered the little fellow among his books, plants, and poverty, September 18, 1840, in a miserable, rat-ridden garret on Race street, Philadelphia. Rafinesque's publications reach the surprising number of 447, consisting of books, pamphlets, magazine articles, translations, and reprints. His most important works are Ichthyologia Ohiensis, or Natural History of the Fishes Inhabiting the River Ohio and its Tributary Streams (Lexington, 1820), a reprint of which his biographer, Dr. Call, has published (Cleveland, 1899); and his Ancient Annals of Kentucky, which Humphrey Marshall printed as an introduction to his History of Kentucky (Frankfort, 1824). The oversheets of this were made into a pamphlet of thirty-nine pages. The little work considers the antiquities of the State, and is the starting point for all latter-day writers upon "the prehistoric men of Kentucky." Imagination and fact run riotously together, yet the work has been correctly characterized as "the most remarkable history of Kentucky that was ever written, or ever will be."

Bibliography. A Kentucky Cardinal, by James Lane Allen (New York, 1894); Life and Writings of Rafinesque, by Richard[Pg 58] E. Call (Louisville, Kentucky, 1895); Rafinesque: A Sketch of his Life, by T. J. Fitzpatrick (Des Moines, Iowa, 1911).


[From Ancient Annals of Kentucky (Frankfort, Kentucky, 1824)]

1. Every complete history of a country ought to include an account of the physical changes and revolutions, which it may have undergone.

2. The documents for such geological survey, are to be found everywhere in the bowels of the earth, its rocks and strata, with the remains of organized bodies imbedded therein, which are now considered as the medals of nature.

3. The soil of Kentucky shows, like many other countries, that it has once been the bed of the sea. In James's Map, the primitive ocean is supposed to have covered North America, by having a former level of 6000 feet above the actual level. Since the highest lands in Kentucky do not exceed 1800 feet above the level of the actual ocean, they were once covered with at least 4200 feet of water.

4. The study of the soil of Kentucky, proves evidently the successive and gradual retreat of the salt waters, without evincing any proofs of any very violent or sudden disruptions or emersions of land, nor eruptions of the ocean, except some casual accidents, easily ascribed to earthquakes, salses and submarine volcanoes.

5. There are no remains of land or burning volcanoes in Kentucky, nor of any considerable fresh water lake. All the strata are nearly horizontal, with valleys excavated by the tides and streams during the soft state of the strata.

6. After these preliminary observations, I shall detail the successive evolution of this soil and its productions, under six distinct periods of time, which may be compared to the six epochs or days of creation, and supposed to have lasted an indefinite number of ages.

[Pg 59]


Mann Butler, the first Kentucky historian who worked with comparatively modern methods, eliminating personal prejudices and imagination, was born at Baltimore, July, 1784. At the age of three years he was taken to the home of his grandfather in Chelsea, England. Mann Butler returned to the United States, in 1798, and entered St. Mary's College, Georgetown, D. C., from which institution he was afterwards graduated in the arts, medicine, and law. His tastes were decidedly literary, and he preferred law to medicine as being, perhaps, more in line with literature. He emigrated to Kentucky, locating at Lexington, in 1806, for the practice of law. He later abandoned law for pedagogy, opening an academy at Versailles, Kentucky. Some years later he taught in Maysville and Frankfort, and was then called to a professorship in Transylvania University, Lexington, where he remained for several years. In 1831 Butler removed to Louisville, where he was engaged in teaching for fifteen years. His History of Kentucky (Louisville, 1834; Cincinnati, 1836) was, after Filson's florid sentences, Rafinesque's imagination, and Marshall's prejudices and castigations, most welcome and timely. He was microscopic in finding facts, fair, having no enemies to punish, an excellent chronicler, in short, and doing a work that was much needed. The Kentucky legislature took a keen interest in his history, rendering him great assistance. Butler's Appeal from the Misrepresentations of James Hall, Respecting the History of Kentucky and the West (Frankfort, 1837), was a just criticism of the Cincinnati writer's Sketches of History in the West (Philadelphia, 1835), a work in which fact and fiction are well-nigh inseparable. Mann Butler spent the last seven years of his life in St. Louis, teaching and in preparing a history of the Ohio valley, which he left in manuscript, but which, together[Pg 60] with his library, was afterwards destroyed by Federal soldiers during the Civil War. He was killed in Missouri, in 1852, while a passenger on a Pacific train which was wrecked by the falling of a bridge spanning the Gasconade river. Mann Butler had many of the qualities required in a great historian, and the work he did has lived well and will live longer.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, 1882); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i).


[From A History of the Commonwealth of Kentucky (Louisville, Kentucky, 1834)]

During this same year [1769], a party of about forty stout hunters, "from New River, Holstein and Clinch" united in a hunting expedition west of the Cumberland Mountains.

Nine of this party, led on by Col. James Knox, reached Kentucky; and, from the time they were absent from home, they "obtained the name of the Long Hunters." This expedition reached "the country south of the Kentucky river," and became acquainted with Green river, and the lower part of the Cumberland.

In addition to these parties, so naturally stimulated by the ardent curiosity incident to early and comparatively, idle society, the claimants of military bounty lands which had been obtained from the British crown, for services against the French, furnished a new and keen band of western explorers. Their land warrants were surveyed on the Kenhawa and the Ohio; though most positively against the very letter of the royal proclamation of '63. But at this distance from the royal court, it was nothing new in the history of government that edicts emanating, even from the king in council, should be but imperfectly regarded. However, this may be, land warrants were actually surveyed on the Kenhawa as early as 1772, and in 1773, several surveyors were deputied to lay out bounty lands on the Ohio river.

Amongst others Thomas Bullitt, uncle to the late Alexander[Pg 61] Scott Bullitt, first lieutenant governor of Kentucky; and Hancock Taylor, engaged in this adventurous work. These gentlemen with their company were overtaken on the 28th of May, 1773, by the McAfees, whose exertions will hereafter occupy a conspicuous station in this narrative.

On the 29th, the party in one boat and four canoes, reached the Ohio river, and elected Bullitt their captain.

There is a romantic incident connected with this gentleman's descent of the Ohio, evincing singular intrepidity and presence of mind; it is taken from his journal, as Mr. [Humphrey] Marshall says, and the author has found it substantially confirmed by the McAfee papers. While on his voyage, he left his boat and went alone through the woods to the Indian town of Old Chillicothe, on the Scioto. He arrived in the midst of the town undiscovered by the Indians, until he was waving his white flag as a token of peace. He was immediately asked what news? Was he from the Long Knife? And why, if he was a peace-messenger, he had not sent a runner? Bullitt, undauntedly replied, that he had no bad news; was from the Long Knife, and as the red men and the whites were at peace, he had come among his brothers to have friendly talk with them, about living on the other side of the Ohio; that he had no runner swifter than himself; and, that he was in haste and could not wait the return of a runner. "Would you," said he, "if you were very hungry, and had killed a deer, send your squaw to town to tell the news, and wait her return before you eat?" This simple address to their own feelings, soon put the Indians in good humor, and at his desire a council was assembled to hear his talk the next day. Captain Bullitt then made strong assurances of friendship on the part of the whites and acknowledged that these "Shawanees and Delawares, our nearest neighbors," "did not get any of the money or blankets given for the land, which I and my people are going to settle. But it is agreed by the great men, who own the land, that they will make a present to both the Delawares and the Shawanees, the next year; and the year following, that shall be as good." On the ensuing day, agreeably to the very deliberate manner of the Indians in council, Captain Bullitt was informed, that "he seemed kind and friendly, and that it pleased them[Pg 62] well." That as "to settling the country on the other side of the Ohio with your people, we are particularly pleased that they are not to disturb us in our hunting. For we must hunt, to kill meat for our women and children, and to get something to buy our powder and lead with, and to get us blankets and clothing." In these talks, there seems a strange want of the usual sagacity of the Indians as to the consequences of white men settling on their hunting grounds; so contrary to their melancholy experience for a century and a half previous; yet, the narrative is unimpeachable. On the part of Bullitt, too, the admission of no compensation to the Delawares and Shawanees, appears to be irreconcilable with the treaty at Fort Stanwix with the master tribes of the confederacy, the Six Nations. However, this may be, the parties separated in perfect harmony, and Captain Bullitt proceeded to the Falls. Here he pitched his camp above the mouth of Bear-grass creek, retiring of a night to the upper point of the shoal above Corn Island, opposite to the present city of Louisville. It was this gentleman, who, according to the testimony of Jacob Sodowsky, a respectable farmer, late of Jessamine county, in this State, first laid off the town of Louisville, in August, 1773. He likewise surveyed Bullitt's Lick in the adjoining county, of the same name.


Zachary Taylor, twelfth president of the United States, was a Kentuckian save for his accidental birth near Orange, Virginia, September 24, 1784. His father, Richard Taylor, had been planning for many years to remove to Kentucky, but his vacillation gave Virginia another president. When but nine months old Zachary Taylor was brought to Kentucky, the family settling near Louisville. He "grew up to manhood with the yell of the savage and the crack of the rifle almost constantly ringing in his ears." The first twenty-four years of his life were passed wholly in Kentucky amid all the dangers of the[Pg 63] Western wilderness. He was fighting Indians almost before he could hold a rifle at arm's length, and in such an environment his education was, of course, very limited. Taylor entered the army, in 1808, serving in the War of 1812, in Black Hawk's war of 1832, and against the Seminole Indians (1836-1837). In 1837 he was brevetted brigadier-general. In 1838 General Taylor was placed in command of the military stations in Florida; and in 1845 he took command of the army on the Texas border. The next five years of General Taylor's life is the history of the Mexican War. At Palo Alto, Monterey, and at Buena Vista, on February 22-23, 1847, where he crushed Santa Anna, he was the absolute man of the hour, the hero of the country. On the strength of his military renown, General Taylor was elected as the Whig candidate for president of the United States, in 1848, defeating General Lewis Cass of Michigan, and former president, Martin Van Buren, of New York. He was inaugurated in March, 1849, but he died at the White House, Washington, July 9, 1850. The country was torn asunder with many important questions during Taylor's administration, which, though brief, was a stormy one. His remains were interred at his old home near Louisville—the only president ever buried in this State—and a ruined monument marks the grave at this time. In 1908 a volume of his Letters from the Battlefields of the Mexican War appeared.

Bibliography. Some Notable Families of America, by Annah Robinson Watson; The War with Mexico, by H. O. Ladd (New York, 1835); General Taylor, by O. O. Howard (New York, 1892).


[From The Private Correspondence of Henry Clay, edited by Calvin Colton (New York, 1855)]

Baton Rouge, La., December 28, 1847.

My dear Sir,—Your kind and acceptable letter of the 13th instant, congratulating me on my safe return to the United[Pg 64] States, and for the complimentary and flattering terms you have been pleased to notice my services, I beg leave to tender you my sincere thanks.

The warm and hearty reception I have met with from so many of my fellow-citizens, where I have mingled among them since my return, in addition to their manifestations of their high appreciation and approval of my conduct while in Mexico, has been truly gratifying, and has ten-fold more than compensated me for the dangers and toils encountered in the public service, as well as for the privations in being so long separated from my family and friends; yet there are circumstances connected with my operations in that country which I can never forget, and which I must always think of with feelings of the deepest sorrow and regret.

I left Mexico after it was determined the column under my orders was to act on the defensive, and after the capital of the enemy had fallen into our hands, and their army dispersed, on a short leave of absence, to visit my family, and to attend to some important private affairs, which could not well be arranged without my being present, and which had been too long neglected. After reaching New Orleans, I informed the Secretary of War that should my presence in Mexico be deemed necessary at any time, I was ready to return, and that a communication on that or any other subject connected with my public duties would reach me if addressed to this place. I therefore feel bound to remain here, or in the vicinity, until the proper authorities at Washington determine what disposition is to be made of or with me. Under this state of things I do not expect to have it in my power to visit Kentucky, although it would afford me much real pleasure to mix once more with my numerous relatives and friends in that patriotic State, to whom I am devotedly attached; as well as again to visit, if not the place of my nativity, where I was reared from infancy to early manhood. And let me assure you I duly appreciate your kind invitation to visit you at your own hospitable home, and should anything occur which will enable me to avail myself of it, I will embrace the opportunity with much real pleasure.

I regret to say, I found my family, or rather Mrs. Taylor, on[Pg 65] my return, in feeble health, as well as my affairs in any other than a prosperous condition; the latter was, however, to be expected, and I must devote what time I can spare, or can be spared from my public duties, in putting them in order as far as I can do so.

Should circumstances so turn out as will induce you to visit Washington the present winter, I trust you will take every precaution to protect yourself while traveling from the effects of the severe cold weather you must necessarily encounter in crossing the mountains, particularly so after having passed several of the last winters in the South.

The letter which you did me the honor to address to me, referred to, reached me on the eve of my leaving Monterey to return to the United States, and was at once replied to, which reply I flatter myself reached you shortly after writing your last communication; in which I stated, although I had received some letters from individuals in Kentucky, calculated, or perhaps intended, to produce unkind feelings on my part toward you, even admitting such was the case, their object has not been accomplished in the slightest degree, and I hope it will never be the case.

Please present me mostly kindly to your excellent lady, and wishing you and yours continued health and prosperity, I remain, with respect and esteem, etc.


Daniel Drake, "the Franklin of the West," was born at Plainfield, New Jersey, October 20, 1785. When he was but three years old, his family removed to Mayslick, Mason county, Kentucky, where they dwelt in a log cabin for some time. When he was sixteen years of age, Drake went to Cincinnati to study medicine, the city's first medical student. He later attended lectures at the medical school of the University of Pennsylvania. On his return to Kentucky, Dr. Drake practiced his profession near his[Pg 66] home at Mayslick, Kentucky, but he shortly afterwards went to Cincinnati, where he became a distinguished physician and author. In 1816 he was appointed professor of materia medica and botany in the medical school of Transylvania University, and he held this chair for one year. He returned to Transylvania, in 1823, and this time he remained for four years. In 1835 Dr. Drake organized the medical department of Cincinnati College. Four years later he went to Louisville to accept the chair of clinical medicine and pathological anatomy in the University of Louisville, which he occupied for ten years. He returned to Cincinnati two years before his death, which occurred there, November 6, 1852. Dr. Drake's publications include Topography, Climate, and Diseases of Cincinnati (1810); Picture of Cincinnati (Cincinnati, 1815); Practical Essays on Medical Education (1832); Systematic Treatise on the Principal Diseases of the Interior Valley of North America (Philadelphia, 1850; 1852), a work which was characterized by Judge James Hall of Cincinnati as "the most important and valuable work ever written in the United States. The subject is large. The work could not be compiled. The subject was new, and the materials were to be collected from original sources, from observation, personal inspection, oral evidence, etc. It occupied many years; and was, probably, in contemplation during the whole or most part of Dr. Drake's long professional life." To-day Dr. Drake's most popular work is Pioneer Life in Kentucky, a series of reminiscential letters addressed to his children, concerning early times in Kentucky. It was issued by Robert Clarke, the Cincinnati publisher in his well-known Ohio Valley Historical Series. This is a charming volume and it has been much quoted and praised by Western writers.

[Pg 67]

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. ii); Beginnings of Literary Culture in the Ohio Valley, by W. H. Venable (Cincinnati, 1891); Allibone's Dictionary of Authors (Philadelphia, 1897).


[From Pioneer Life in Kentucky (Cincinnati, 1870)]

Mayslick, although scarcely a village, was at once an emporium and capital for a tract of country six or eight miles in diameter, and embracing several hundred families, of which those in father's neighborhood were tolerably fair specimens. Uncle Abraham Drake kept a store, and Shotwell and Morris kept taverns; besides them there were a few poor mechanics. Uncle Cornelius Drake was a farmer merely, and lived a little out of the center of the station; the great men of which were the three I have just named. With this limited population, it seems, even down to this time, wonderful to me that such gatherings and such scenes should have been transacted there. They commenced within five years after its settlement, and increasing with the progress of surrounding population, continued in full vigor long after I left home for Cincinnati. It was the place for holding regimental militia musters, when all the boys and old men of the surrounding country, not less than those who stood enrolled, would assemble; and before dispersing at night, the training was quite eclipsed by a heterogeneous drama of foot racing, pony racing, wrestling, fighting, drunkenness and general uproar. It was also a place for political meetings and stump conflict by opposing candidates, and after intellectual performances there generally followed an epilogue of oaths, yells, loud blows, and gnashing of teeth. Singing-schools were likewise held at the same place in a room of Deacon Morris's tavern. I was never a scholar, which I regret, for it has always been a grief with me that I did not learn music in early life. I occasionally attended. As in all country singing-schools, sacred music only was taught, but in general there was not much display of sanctity. I have a distinct remembrance of one teacher only. He was a Yankee, without a family, between forty and fifty years of age, and wore a matted mass of thick hair over the place where men's ears are usually found. Thus protected, his were never seen, and after[Pg 68] the opinion spread abroad that by some misfortune they had been cut off, he "cut and run."

The infant capital was, still further, the local seat of justice; and Saturday was for many years, at all times I might say, the regular term time. Instead of trying cases at home, two or three justices of the peace would come to the Lick on that day, and hold their separate courts. This, of course, brought thither all the litigants of the neighborhood with their friends and witnesses; all who wished to purchase at the store would postpone their visit to the same day; all who had to replenish their jugs of whiskey did the same thing; all who had business with others expected to meet them there, as our city merchants, at noon, expect to meet each other on 'change; finally, all who thirsted after drink, fun, frolic, or fighting, of course, were present. Thus Saturday was a day of largely suspended field labor, but devoted to public business, social pleasure, dissipation, and beastly drunkenness. You might suppose that the presence of civil magistrates would have repressed some of these vices, but it was not so. Each day provided a bill of fare for the next. A new trade in horses, another horse race, a cock-fight, or a dog-fight, a wrestling match, or a pitched battle between two bullies, who in fierce encounter would lie on the ground scratching, pulling hair, choking, gouging out each other's eyes, and biting off each other's noses, in the manner of bull-dogs, while a Roman circle of interested lookers-on would encourage the respective gladiators with shouts which a passing demon might have mistaken for those of hell. In the afternoon, the men and boys of business and sobriety would depart, and at nightfall the dissipated would follow them, often two on a horse, reeling and yelling as I saw drunken Indians do in the neighborhood of Fort Leavenworth, in the summer of 1844. But many would be too much intoxicated to mount their horses, and must therefore remain till Sunday morning.

[Pg 69]


Mrs. Mary Austin Holley, the historian of Texas, was born at New Haven, Connecticut, in 1786. On January 1, 1805, she was married to the Rev. Horace Holley, who, in the fall of that year, became pastor of a church at Greenfield Hill, Connecticut. Mrs. Holley, of course, was in Boston with her husband from 1809 to 1818; and she accompanied him to Lexington, Kentucky, when he accepted the presidency of Transylvania University. Mrs. Holley was one of the few persons whom the eccentric scientist, Rafinesque, set down as having been very kind to him while he was connected with the University. She lived in Lexington until the spring of 1827, when she went with her husband to New Orleans. She wrote a poem, On Leaving Kentucky, the first stanza of which is as follows:

Farewell to the land in which broad rivers flow,
And vast prairies bloom as in Eden's young day!
Farewell to the land in which lofty trees grow,
And the vine and the mistletoe's empire display.

She later embarked with her husband for New York, and it was her pen that so vividly described his death on shipboard. After Dr. Holley's death his widow returned to Lexington, Kentucky, and wrote the memoir for Dr. Charles Caldwell's Discourse on the Genius and Character of the Rev. Horace Holley, LL. D. (Boston, 1828). Mrs. Holley left Kentucky in 1831 and emigrated to Texas under the protection of her celebrated kinsman, General Stephen Fuller Austin, a Transylvania University man, and the founder of Texas. Her Texas (Lexington, Kentucky, 1836), was one of the first histories of that country ever published. Mrs. Holley was a widely read woman, theology being her favorite study, and, like her husband, she was a Unitarian. In person she was said to be a very[Pg 70] charming woman. Mrs. Holley spent the last several years of her life at New Orleans, in which city she died on August 2, 1846.

Bibliography. The Transylvanian (Lexington, January, 1829); Adams's Dictionary of American Authors (Boston, 1905).


[From Texas (Lexington, Kentucky, 1836)]

Living in a wild country under circumstances requiring constant exertion, forms the character to great and daring enterprise. Women thus situated are known to perform exploits, which the effeminate men of populous cities might tremble at. Hence there are more Dianas and Esther Stanhopes than one in Texas. It is not uncommon for ladies to mount their mustangs and hunt with their husbands, and with them to camp out for days on their excursions to the sea shore for fish and oysters. All visiting is done on horseback, and they will go fifty miles to a ball with their silk dresses, made perhaps in Philadelphia or New Orleans, in their saddle-bags. Hardy, vigorous constitutions, free spirits, and spontaneous gaiety are thus induced, and continued a rich legacy to their children, who, it is to be hoped, will sufficiently value the blessing not to squander it away, in their eager search for the luxuries and refinements of polite life. Women have capacity for greatness, but they require occasions to bring it out. They require, perhaps, stronger motives than men—they have stronger barriers to break through of indolence and habit—but, when roused, they are quick to discern and unshrinking to act. Lot was unfortunate in his wife. Many a wife in Texas has proved herself the better half, and many a widow's heart has prompted her to noble daring.

Mrs. —— left her home in Kentucky with her six sons, and no other jewels. There was good land and room in Texas. Hither she came with the first settlers, at a time when the Indians were often troublesome by coming in large companies and encamping near an isolated farm, demanding of its helpless proprietors, not then too well provided for, whatever of provisions or other things struck their fancies. One of these foraging parties, not over nice[Pg 71] in their demands, stationed themselves in rather too near proximity to the dwelling of this veteran lady. They were so well satisfied with their position, and scoured the place so completely, that she ventured to remonstrate, gently at first, then more vehemently. All would not do: the pic-nics would not budge an inch; and moreover threatened life if she did not forbear from further expressions of impatience. The good woman was armed. She buckled on her breastplate of courage, if not of righteousness, and with her children and women servants, all her household around her, sent for the chief, and very boldly expostulating with him, commanded him to depart on the instant at the peril of his tribe; or by a signal she would call in her whole people, numerous and formidable, and exterminate his race. She was no more troubled with the Indians. She lives comfortably with her thriving family and thriving fortune, and with great credit to herself, on the road between Brazoria and San Felipe, in the same house now famed for its hospitality and comfort. It is the usual stopping place for travellers on that route, who are not a little entertained with the border stories and characteristic jests there related, by casual companies meeting for the night and sharing the same apartment. It was thus that the above incident, much more exemplified, was drawn from the hostess herself. A volume of reminiscences thus collected, racy with the marvellous, would not be unapt to modern taste, and the modern science of book-making.


John Jordan Crittenden, a Kentucky statesman and orator of national reputation, was born near Versailles, Kentucky, September 10, 1787. He was graduated from the College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Virginia, studied law, and was admitted to the Frankfort bar. Crittenden served in the War of 1812; and in 1816 he was a member of the Kentucky legislature. In the following year he was elected United States Senator from Kentucky, his party, the Whig, then being in power in this State.[Pg 72] From 1827 to 1829 Crittenden was United States Attorney for the district of Kentucky; and in 1835 he was again sent to the Senate, with Henry Clay as his colleague. President William Henry Harrison made him his Attorney-General, in 1841, and he resigned his seat in the Senate. When John Tyler succeeded to the presidency six months later, on the death of Harrison, Crittenden withdrew from the cabinet portfolio, and he was almost immediately returned to the Senate by the legislature of Kentucky. He served until 1848, when he was elected Governor of Kentucky. Governor Crittenden was the most distinguished, if not indeed the ablest, chief executive this Commonwealth has ever known. He resigned the governorship, in 1850, in order to become President Fillmore's Attorney-General, which position he held for three years. In 1855 Crittenden was for the fourth time elected United States Senator from Kentucky. As the war between the States approached, Senator Crittenden, though a Southerner, chose the cause of the Union, lining up with the administration heart and soul. In the beginning he did his utmost to prevent the war, and, failing, he exerted his entire energies to aid Abraham Lincoln and the North to prosecute it. In 1860 the Senator urged his famous Compromise, providing for the reëstablishment of the old slave-line of 36' 30 N., and for the enforcement of the fugitive-slave laws, but it was never moulded into law. The last two years of his life were spent as a member of the lower House of Congress, where he continued his fight for the supremacy of the Constitution. Senator Crittenden died near Frankfort, Kentucky, July 26, 1863, thus surviving his greatest friend and fellow patriot, Henry Clay, more than eleven years.

Bibliography. Life of John J. Crittenden, by Mrs. Chapman Coleman (Philadelphia, 1871); History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, 1882).

[Pg 73]


[From The Life of John J. Crittenden, edited by his daughter, Mrs. Chapman Coleman (Philadelphia, 1871)]

At the opening of the court this morning, Mr. Crittenden, the Attorney-General of the United States, addressed the court as follows:

"Since its adjournment yesterday, the members of the bar and officers of the court held a meeting and adopted resolutions expressive of their high sense of the public and private worth of the Hon. John McKinley, one of the justices of this court, and their deep regret at his death. By the same meeting I was requested to present those resolutions to the court, and to ask that they might be entered on its records, and I now rise to perform that honored task.

"Besides the private grief which naturally attends it, the death of a member of this court, which is the head of the great, essential, and vital department of the government, must always be an event of public interest and importance.

"I had the good fortune to be acquainted with Judge McKinley from my earliest manhood. In the relations of private life he was frank, hospitable, affectionate. In his manners he was simple and unaffected, and his character was uniformly marked with manliness, integrity, and honor. Elevation to the bench of the Supreme Court made no change in him. His honors were borne meekly, without ostentation or presumption.

"He was a candid, impartial, and righteous judge. Shrinking from no responsibility, he was fearless in the performance of his duty, seeking only to do right, and fearing nothing but to do wrong. Death has now set her seal to his character, making it unchangeable forever; and I think it may be truly inscribed on his monument that as a private gentleman and as a public magistrate he was without fear and without reproach.

"This occasion cannot but remind us of other afflicting losses which have recently befallen us. The present, indeed, has been a sad year for the profession of the law. In a few short months it has been bereaved of its brightest and greatest ornaments. Clay, Webster, and Sergeant have gone to their immortal rest in quick succession. We had scarcely returned from the grave of[Pg 74] one of them till we were summoned to the funeral of another. Like bright stars they have sunk below the horizon, and have left the land in widespread gloom. This hall that knew them so well shall know them no more. Their wisdom has no utterance now, and the voice of their eloquence shall be heard here no more forever.

"This hall itself seems as though it was sensible of its loss, and even these marble pillars seem to sympathize as they stand around us like so many majestic mourners.

"But we will have consolation in the remembrance of these illustrious men. Their names will remain to us and be like a light kindled in the sky to shine upon us and to guide our course. We may hope, too, that the memory of them and their great examples will create a virtuous emulation which may raise up men worthy to be their successors in the service of their country, its constitution, and its laws.

"For this digression, and these allusions to Clay, Webster, and Sergeant, I hope the occasion may be considered as a sufficient excuse, and I will not trespass by another word, except only to move that these resolutions in relation to Judge McKinley, when they shall have been read by the clerk, may be entered on the records of this court."


John Milton Harney, the first of the Kentucky poets to win and retain a wide reputation, a man with the divine afflatus, whose whole body of song is slender but of real worth, was born near Georgetown, Delaware, March 9, 1789. He was the second son of Major Thomas Harney, of Revolutionary War fame, and the elder brother of General William S. Harney, a hero of Cerro Gordo. When John Milton Harney was but two years old, his family emigrated to Tennessee, and later removed to Louisiana. He studied medicine and settled at Bardstown, Kentucky. In 1814 Dr. Harney married a daughter of Judge John Rowan, the early Kentucky statesman; and her death four[Pg 75] years later was such a shock to her husband that he was compelled to abandon his practice, and seek solace in travel and new scenes. Dr. Harney spent some time in England, and on his return to America he settled at Savannah, Georgia. He over-exerted himself at a disastrous fire in Savannah, which resulted in a violent fever and ended in breaking his health. He returned to Bardstown, Kentucky, became a convert to Roman Catholicism, and in that place he died, January 15, 1825, when but thirty-five years of age. At the age of twenty-three years, Dr. Harney wrote Crystalina, a Fairy Tale, in six cantos, but his extreme sensitiveness caused him to hold it in manuscript for four years, or until 1816, when it was issued anonymously at New York. This work was highly praised by Rufus W. Griswold, John Neal, and other well-known critics, but the unfavorable criticism far outweighed the favorable criticism, so the author held, and he published nothing more in book form; and he did all in his power to suppress the edition of Crystalina. William Davis Gallagher, poet and critic of a later time in the West, went over Dr. Harney's manuscripts and from them rescued his masterpiece, the exquisite Echo and the Lover. This Gallagher published in his Western Literary Journal for 1837—the first form in which the public saw it. No Western poem has had a wider audience than the Echo. It has been parodied in Europe and America many times, and is the finest expression of Dr. Harney's genius. It is to be regretted that no comprehensive account of the poet's life and literary labors has come down to posterity. As a poet and as a man his merits were of the truest sort, but a handful of facts, a suppressed book, a lyric or so, are all that have been brought to the attention of the literary world.

Bibliography. The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860); Blades o' Bluegrass, by Fannie P. Dickey (Louisville, 1892).

[Pg 76]


[From The Poets and Poetry of the West, edited by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860)]

Lover. Echo! mysterious nymph, declare
Of what you're made and what you are—
Echo.       "Air!"
Lover. 'Mid airy cliffs, and places high,
Sweet Echo! listening, love, you lie—
Echo.       "You lie!"
Lover. You but resuscitate dead sounds—
Hark! how my voice revives, resounds!
Echo.       "Zounds!"
Lover. I'll question you before I go—
Come, answer me more apropos!
Echo.       "Poh! poh!"
Lover. Tell me, fair nymph, if e'er you saw
So sweet a girl as Phoebe Shaw!
Echo.       "Pshaw!"
Lover. Say, what will win that frisking coney
Into the toils of matrimony!
Echo.       "Money!"
Lover. Has Phoebe not a heavenly brow?
Is it not white as pearl—as snow?
Echo.       "Ass, no!"
Lover. Her eyes! Was ever such a pair?
Are the stars brighter than they are?
Echo.       "They are!"
Lover. Echo, you lie, but can't deceive me;
Her eyes eclipse the stars, believe me—
[Pg 77] Echo.       "Leave me!"
Lover. But come, you saucy, pert romancer,
Who is as fair as Phoebe? Answer.
Echo.       "Ann, sir!"


[From the same]

There is a strange, mysterious bird,
Which few have seen, but all have heard:
He sits upon a fallen tree,
Through all the night, and thus sings he:
Despising show, and empty noise,
The gaudy fluttering thing he flies:
And in the echoing vale by night
Thus sings the pensive anchorite:
Oh, had I but his voice and wings,
I'd envy not a bird that sings;
But gladly would I flit away,
And join the wild nocturnal lay:
The school-boy, tripping home in haste,
Impatient of the night's repast,
Would stop to hear my whistle shrill,
And answer me with mimic skill:
The rich man's scorn, the poor man's care,
Folly in silk, and Wisdom bare,
Virtue on foot, and Vice astride,
No more should vex me while I cried:
[Pg 78] Whippowil!
How blest!—Nor loneliness nor state,
Nor fame, nor wealth, nor love, nor hate,
Nor av'rice, nor ambition vain,
Should e'er disturb my tranquil strain:


[From Crystalina (New York, 1816)]

The shores with acclamations rung,
As in the flood the playful damsels sprung:
Upon their beauteous bodies, with delight,
The billows leapt. Oh, 'twas a pleasant sight
To see the waters dimple round, for joy,
Climb their white necks, and on their bosoms toy:
Like snowy swans they vex'd the sparkling tide,
Till little rainbows danced on every side.
Some swam, some floated, some on pearly feet
Stood sidelong, smiling, exquisitely sweet.


George Robertson, the most widely quoted Kentucky jurist, and an able writer, was born near Harrodsburg, Kentucky, November 18, 1790. He was educated in the arts and in law at Transylvania University, and entered upon the practice of his profession at Lancaster, Kentucky, in 1809. In 1816 Robertson was elected to Congress, where he remained for two terms. He drew up the bill for the establishment of Arkansaw territory; and he projected the system of cutting public lands into small lots, selling them to actual settlers for one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre. He declined another term in the House, as well as the attorney-generalship of Kentucky,[Pg 79] in order to devote his whole attention to the law. Robertson was elected against his desire to the Kentucky legislature, in 1822, and he was a member of that body for the next five years. This was the time of the struggle between the Old-Court and New-Court parties, which was one of the most bitter political fights ever seen in Kentucky. Robertson consistently and vigorously championed the cause of the Old-Court party, which finally won. That this disgusted him with political life in any dress, is shown by his subsequent declination of the governorship of Arkansaw, and the Columbian and Peruvian missions. In 1828 he was elected an associate justice of the Kentucky Court of Appeals, and, in the following year, chief justice. This position was George Robertson's heart's desire—he hated politics with a never-dying hatred, the law and the bench being his earthly paradise. He was chief justice of Kentucky for fourteen years, when he resigned to return to the active practice of law. From 1834 to 1857 Judge Robertson was professor of law in Transylvania University at Lexington. He died at Lexington, May 16, 1874, generally regarded as the ablest jurist Kentucky has produced. He was also the author of four books: Introductory Lecture to the Transylvania Law Class (Lexington); Biographical Sketch of John Boyle (Frankfort, 1838); Scrap-Book on Law and Politics, Men and Times (Lexington, 1855), his best known book; and his very interesting and well-written autobiography, entitled An Outline of the Life of George Robertson, written by Himself (Lexington, 1876), to which his son contributed an introduction and appendix.

Bibliography. The chief authority for the facts of Judge Robertson's life is, of course, his autobiography; Samuel M. Wilson's study in Great American Lawyers (Philadelphia, 1908).

[Pg 80]


[From Scrap Book on Law and Politics, Men and Times (Lexington, Kentucky, 1855)]

Yet we have hopes that are immortal—interests that are imperishable—principles that are indestructible. Encouraged by those hopes, stimulated by those interests, and sustained by and sustaining those principles, let us, come what may, be true to God, true to ourselves, and faithful to our children, our country, and mankind. And then, whenever or wherever it may be our doom to look, for the last time, on earth, we may die justly proud of the title of "Kentuckian," and, with our expiring breath, may cordially exclaim—Kentucky, as she was;—Kentucky, as she is;—Kentucky, as she will be;—Kentucky forever.


[From An Outline of the Life of George Robertson, written by Himself (Lexington, Kentucky, 1876)]

Yet, thus juvenile, poor, and proud, I ventured not only on the rather hopeless prospects of professional life, but, on the 28th of November, 1809, when I was only ten days over nineteen years of age, I ventured on the far more momentous contingencies of marriage, and, linking my destinies with a wife only fifteen years and seven months old, we embarked without freight or pilotage, on the untried sea of early marriage. I had never made a cent, and had nothing but ordinary clothes, a horse, an old servant, a few books, and the humble talents with which God had blessed me. I borrowed thirteen dollars as an outfit, and out of that fund I paid for my license and handed to my groomsman, R. P. Letcher, five dollars for paying the parson, Randolph Hall, father of Rev. Nathan H. Hall. Some days afterwards Letcher rather slyly put into my hand a dollar, suggesting that he had saved that much for me by paying the preacher only four dollars. This looked to me as such minute parsimony as to excite my indignation, important as was only one dollar then to me. And I manifested that feeling in a manner both emphatic and censurious; to which Letcher replied that four dollars was more than was then customary, and that Mr. Hall, when he received it, expressed the[Pg 81] warmest gratitude, and said that, old as he was, he had never received so large a fee for solemnizing the matrimonial rite! This reconciled me to the return of the dollar.

My wife and myself lived with her mother until the 9th of September, 1810, when we set up for ourselves in a small buckeye house with only two rooms, built and first occupied by Judge [John] Boyle, and respecting which I may here suggest this remarkable coincidence of successive events:—That Boyle commenced housekeeping in that house, and, while he occupied it, was elected to Congress; that Samuel McKee commenced housekeeping in the same house, and succeeded Boyle in Congress; that I commenced housekeeping in the same house, and succeeded McKee in Congress; and that R. P. Letcher commenced housekeeping in the same house, and, after an interval of two years, succeeded me in Congress. I was unable to furnish it with a carpet, and our only furniture consisted of two beds, one table, one bureau, six split-bottomed chairs, and a small supply of table and kitchen furniture, which I bought with a small gold watch. I had bought a bag of flour, a bag of corn meal, a half barrel of salt, and two hams and two middlings of bacon; and these, together with the milk of a small cow given to my wife by her mother, and a few chickens and some butter, constituted our entire outfit of provisions. But all our supplies were stolen the night we commenced housekeeping. This was, at that time, a heavy blow. I had no money; and, though I had good credit, I resolved not to buy anything on credit. And that was one of the best resolutions I ever made. It stimulated my industry and economy, and soon secured to me peace and a comfortable sense of independence. In adhering to my privative, but conservative resolve, I often cut and carried on my shoulders wood from a neighboring forest.


[From the same]

The classical reader remembers that, when almost all the Greeks, captured with Nicias at Syracuse, had died in dungeons, a remnant of the survivors saved themselves by the recitation of beautiful extracts from Euripides. How potent was the shadowed genius of the immortal Athenian, when it alone melted the[Pg 82] icy hearts that nothing else could touch, and broke the captive's chains, which justice, and prayers, and tears, had in vain tried to unloose! And hence "the glory of Euripides had all Greece for a monument." He too was elevated by the light of other minds. It is said that he acquired a sublime inspiration whenever he read Homer—whose Iliad and whose Odyssey—the one exhibiting the fatality of strife among leading men, the other portraying the efficacy of perseverance—have stamped his name on the roll of fame in letters of sunshine, that will never fade away. No memorial tells where Troy once stood—Delphi is now mute—the thunder of Olympus is hushed, and Apollo's lyre no longer echoes along the banks of the Peneus—but the fame of Homer still travels with the stars.


Shadrach Penn, one of the ablest of Kentucky journalists, was born at Frederick, Maryland, in 1790. His family settled near Georgetown, Kentucky, when he was a mere boy. Penn began his newspaper career at Georgetown when he was but nineteen years of age; and he subsequently served in the War of 1812. In 1818 Penn removed to Louisville and established The Public Advertiser, which was a weekly for the first few years of its history, then a semi-weekly, and, on April 4, 1826, a final change was made "and the first daily newspaper west of the Alleghanies was flung to the public." After the establishment of the Kentucky Gazette, this marked the second most epoch-making event in Kentucky journalism. Penn was an able editor, the very ablest in Kentucky, and he was having things his own way in the West, advocating Jacksonian Democracy. In 1828 President Jackson showed his appreciation of Penn's services by offering him a place in his cabinet, which he declined, but he did spend a winter at Washington as the President's warm friend and adviser. Then, mirabile dictu! the Whigs[Pg 83] brought George D. Prentice to Kentucky and, in 1830, he established the Louisville Journal, and began a most bitter fight upon Penn's paper. Penn fought back as best he could, but he was quite unequal for the contest. For nearly twelve years the warfare was waged without either editor asking quarter, and to the infinite amusement of the whole country. In 1841 Penn ran up the white flag and went to St. Louis to become editor of the St. Louis Reporter. Prentice bade him farewell in the best of temper, and when he died at St. Louis, on June 15, 1846, the old Whig's tribute to his memory was the finest one written.

Bibliography. The Pioneer Press of Kentucky, by W. H. Perrin (Louisville, 1888); Memorial History of Louisville, Kentucky, by J. Stoddard Johnston (Chicago, 1896).


[From The Public Advertiser (Louisville, September 10, 1830)]

This gentleman and Mr. Buxton, of Cincinnati, have issued proposals for publishing a daily paper in Louisville, which is to be edited by Mr. Prentice. Willing that the gentleman shall be known by the people whose patronage he is seeking, we copy today from a Cincinnati paper his account of the late elections in Kentucky. The production may be viewed as a fair specimen of his "fine literature, his drollery, strong powers of sarcasm," and, above all, his "poetical capacity." The respect and attachment he displays toward Kentucky (to say nothing of the Jackson party), must be exquisitely gratifying to the respectable portion of Mr. Clay's friends in this city. To them we commend the letter of Mr. Prentice as an erudite, chaste, and veritable production, worthy of the "great editor" who is hereafter to figure as Mr. Clay's champion in the West. We may, moreover, congratulate them in consequence of the fair prospect before them; for with the aid of such an editor they cannot fail to effect miraculous revolutions or revulsions in the political world. The occupants of all our fish markets will be confirmed in their devotion to the opposition beyond redemption.

[Pg 84]


William Orlando Butler, one of General Lew Wallace's favorite poets, was born near Nicholasville, Kentucky, in 1791. He was the son of Percival Butler, a noted Revolutionary soldier. He was graduated from Transylvania University, Lexington, in 1812. Butler studied law for a short time, but the War of 1812 called him and he enlisted. At the River Raisin he was wounded and captured and carried through Canada to Fort Niagara, but he was later exchanged. Butler was with General Jackson at the battle of New Orleans, and his gallantry attracted the attention of the general, who placed him upon his staff. In 1817 Butler returned to the law, married, and settled in the little river town of Carrollton, Kentucky, on the Ohio, his home henceforth. In July, 1821, the first draft of his famous poem, The Boatman's Horn (then called The Boat Horn), was published in The Western Review, a monthly magazine of Lexington, Kentucky. In describing his boyhood days at Covington, Indiana, General Lew Wallace very charmingly writes of his early love for the Wabash river, and for old Nebeker, the lonesome ferryman, who "welcomed me for my company. On the farther side, chained to a tree, he kept a long tin horn. A traveller, coming to the bank and finding us on the townward side, blew to get our attention ... when the voice of the big horn on the thither side called to us—How it startled me! What music there was in it! What haste I made to unship my oar!... And if since then I have been an ardent fisherman, believing with my friend Maurice Thompson that

"Halcyon prophecies come to pass
In the haunts of the bream and bass;"

and if the song of Butler, the soldier-poet of Kentucky[Pg 85]

"Oh, boatman, wind that horn again!
For never did the joyous air
Upon its lambent bosom bear
So wild, so soft, so sweet a strain"—

is still a favorite of mine, with power to stir my pulses and return me to a freak of childhood full of joyousness alloyed only with thought of my mother's fears, the shrewd reader will know at once how such tastes inured to me. And as swimming seems to have been one of my natural accomplishments, I must have acquired it during my days at the ferry." This is far and away the best background for Butler's poem that has been done, and with it before the reader the famous poem must mean more to him. The poem was subsequently published as the title-poem in a small collection of his verse, entitled The Boatman's Horn and Other Poems. From 1839 to 1843 Butler was a Kentucky Congressman; and in 1844 the unsuccessful candidate for governor of Kentucky. Upon his Mexican War record, General Butler was nominated by the Democratic party for vice-president of the United States with General Lewis Cass, of Michigan, as the head of the ticket, but they were defeated by Martin Van Buren and Charles Francis Adams. In 1855 General Butler declined the governorship of the territory of Nebraska; and in 1861 he went to Washington as a member of the famous "Peace Congress." General Butler died at his home, Carrollton, Kentucky, August 6, 1880, in the ninetieth year of his age. Though famous as a soldier and politician, The Boatman's Horn is the work that will keep his name green for many years; and several of his other poems are not to be utterly despised.

Bibliography. Biographical Sketch of Gen. William O. Butler, by F. P. Blair, Senior (Washington, 1848), was reprinted in full in The Kentucky Yeoman (Frankfort, June 15, 1848);[Pg 86] The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860); Lew Wallace's Autobiography (New York, 1906).


[From The Poets and Poetry of the West, edited by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860)]

O, boatman! wind that horn again,
For never did the list'ning air
Upon its lambent bosom bear
So wild, so soft, so sweet a strain!
What though thy notes are sad and few,
By every simple boatman blown,
Yet is each pulse to nature true,
And melody in every tone.
How oft, in boyhood's joyous day,
Unmindful of the lapsing hours,
I've loitered on my homeward way
By wild Ohio's bank of flowers;
While some lone boatman from the deck
Poured his soft numbers to the tide,
As if to charm from storm and wreck
The boat where all his fortunes ride!
Delighted, Nature drank the sound,
Enchanted, Echo bore it round
In whispers soft and softer still,
From hill to plain and plain to hill,
Till e'en the thoughtless frolic boy,
Elate with hope and wild with joy,
Who gambolled by the river's side
And sported with the fretting tide,
Feels something new pervade his breast,
Change his light steps, repress his jest,
Bends o'er the flood his eager ear,
To catch the sounds far off, yet dear—
Drinks the sweet draught, but knows not why
[Pg 87] The tear of rapture fills his eye.
And can he now, to manhood grown,
Tell why those notes, simple and lone,
As on the ravished ear they fell,
Bind every sense in magic spell?
There is a tide of feeling given
To all on earth, its fountains, heaven,
Beginning with the dewy flower,
Just ope'd in Flora's vernal bower,
Rising creation's orders through,
With louder murmur, brighter hue—
That tide is sympathy! its ebb and flow
Give life its hue, its joy, and woe.
Music, the master-spirit that can move
Its waves to war, or lull them into love—
Can cheer the sinking sailor 'mid the wave,
And bid the warrior on! nor fear the grave,
Inspire the fainting pilgrim on the road,
And elevate his soul to claim his God.
Then, boatman, wind that horn again!
Though much of sorrow mark its strain,
Yet are its notes to sorrow dear;
What though they wake fond memory's tear?
Tears are sad memory's sacred feast,
And rapture oft her chosen guest.


Hew Ainslie, the foremost Scottish-Kentucky poet, was born at Bargery Mains, Ayrshire, April 5, 1792. Ill-health cut short Ainslie's education at the Ayr Academy, but some years later he went up to Glasgow to study law. Law and Hew Ainslie were not congenial fellows, and he shortly embarked upon the art of landscape gardening.[Pg 88] He was next a clerk in Edinburgh, and also amanuensis for Professor Dugald Stewart. "Gradually the clouds of [Ainslie's] tobacco smoke began to curl into seven letters which looked like America." He was thirty years of age when he arrived at New York. He spent his first years in New York and Indiana as a farmer, but he soon relinquished this work and went, in 1829, to Louisville, Kentucky, where, three years later, an Ohio river flood swept his property away. And two years after this disastrous flood, fire destroyed his property in Indiana. Undismayed by misfortune, Ainslie became a contractor and supervised the erection of many large business structures in Louisville and other cities. During all these years he was assiduously courting the Muse, and making a great reputation for himself as a poet. Ainslie's first book, A Pilgrimage to the Land of Burns (Deptford, 1822), is the English edition of his charming lyrics; and his Scottish Songs, Ballads, and Poems (New York, 1855), is the only American edition of his work. In 1864, forty-two years after his departure, Ainslie revisited the land of his birth, where he was hailed as one of Scotland's finest singers since Robert Burns. Kentucky was in the poet's blood, however, and a year later he returned to his home at Louisville. His American friends were not to be outdone by his home people, and they arranged a great home-coming for him. In 1871, when the Scots of Louisville assembled to celebrate the birthday of Burns, Ainslie, the toastmaster, arose and smilingly confessed to having once kissed "Bonnie Jean," Burns's widow. He died at Louisville, March 11, 1878. A comprehensive Scottish edition of his A Pilgrimage to the Land of Burns, and Poems, was issued in 1892. The Ingle Side, a little song of sixteen lines, is Ainslie's masterpiece; but it was as a poet of the sea that he won his great reputation. "As Lloyd Mifflin is America's greatest sonneteer, so Hew Ainslie, the[Pg 89] adopted Kentuckian, may perhaps be ranked as America's most ardent singer of the sea."

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i); Hew Ainslie, by A. S. Mackenzie (Library of Southern Literature, Atlanta, Georgia, 1909, v. i).


[From A Pilgrimage to the Land of Burns, and Poems (Paisley, Scotland, 1892)]

I left ye, Jeanie, blooming fair,
'Mang the bourocks o' Bargeny;           [bowers]
I've found ye on the banks o' Ayr,
But sair ye're altered, Jeanie.
I left ye 'mang the woods sae green,
In rustic weed befitting;
I've found ye buskit like a queen,             [attired]
In painted chaumbers sitting.           [chambers]
I left ye like the wanton lamb
That plays 'mang Hadyed's heather;
I've found ye noo a sober dame,
A wife and eke a mither.
Ye're fairer, statelier, I can see,
Ye're wiser, nae dou't, Jeanie;
But ah! I'd rather met wi' thee
'Mang the bourocks o' Bargeny.


[From the same]

Welcome, Edie, owre the sea,
Welcome to this lan' an' me,
Welcome from the warl' whaur we
[Pg 90] Hae whistled owre the lave o't.              [rest]
Come, gie your banes anither hitch,
Up Hudson's stream, thro' Clinton's ditch,
An' see our watlin meadows rich            [cane-brake]
Wi' corn an' a' the lave o't.           [all the rest of it]
We've hizzie here baith swank and sweet      [maidens agile]
An' birkies here that can stan' a heat          [young men]
O' barley bree, or aqua vit            [brew; water of life]
Syne whistle owre the lave o't.
Gude kens, I want nae better luck        [Goodness knows]
Than just to see ye, like a buck,
Spanking the haughs o' auld Kentuck, [speeding over the meadows]
An' whistling owre the lave o't.


[From the same]

It's rare to see the morning bleeze,            [blaze]
Like a bonfire frae the sea;
It's fair to see the burnie kiss             [streamlet]
The lip o' the flowery lea;
An' fine it is on green hillside,
When hums the hinny bee;
But rarer, fairer, finer far,
Is the ingle side to me.
Glens may be gilt wi' gowans rare            [daisies]
The birds may fill the tree,
An' haughs hae a' the scented ware        [river meadows]
That simmer's growth can gie;
But the canty hearth where cronies meet,        [cheerful]
An' the darling o' our e'e—
That makes to us a warl' complete,
Oh! the ingle side for me.
[Pg 91]


[From the same]

It's dowie in the hint o' hairst,        [dreary; end; harvest]
At the wa'-gang o' the swallow,          [away-going]
When the wind blows cauld an' the burns grow bauld,     [bold]
An' the wuds are hingin' yellow;
But oh! it's dowier far to see
The deid-set o' a shining e'e
That darkens the weary warld on thee.
There was muckle love atween us twa—
Oh! twa could ne'er been fonder;
An' the thing on yird was never made
That could hae gart us sunder.
But the way of Heaven's aboon a' ken,     [above all knowing]
And we maun bear what it likes to sen'—          [must]
It's comfort, though, to weary men,
That the warst o' this warld's waes maun en'.
There's mony things that come and gae,
Just kent and syne forgotten;
The flow'rs that busk a bonnie brae          [deck; slope]
Gin anither year lie rotten.
But the last look o' that lovin' e'e,
An' the dying grip she gied to me,
They're settled like eternitie—
O Mary! that I were with thee.


James Gillespie Birney, leader of the Conservative Abolitionists, opposed to the radicalism of William Lloyd Garrison and all his ilk, yet as earnest and sincere in his hatred of slavery, was born at Danville, Kentucky, February 4, 1792. He was at Transylvania University for a short time, then proceeded to Princeton, from which institution[Pg 92] he was graduated in 1810. In 1814 he became a lawyer in his native town of Danville. In 1816 Birney was in the Kentucky legislature; but two years later he removed to Alabama, settling upon a plantation near Huntsville. The slavery question was appealing to him more and more, and he finally became an agent for the American Colonization Society. In the fall of 1833 Birney returned to Kentucky, and went to Danville, where he freed his own slaves, and organized the Kentucky Anti-Slavery Society. On January 1, 1836, the first issue of his anti-slavery sheet, The Philanthropist, appeared from his Cincinnati office. This soon became the Bible of the Conservative Abolitionists, who opposed the drastic methods of Garrison and his followers. In his speeches Birney denounced all violence and fanaticism in the handling of the slavery problem, though he himself received much violence at the hands of mobs and almost insane partisans. His strong addresses through the North won him the secretaryship of the American Anti-Slavery Society in 1837. In this capacity he was soon recognized as the real leader of the "Constitutional Abolitionists," who said they stood upon the Constitution, fought against secession, and desired to wipe slavery from the face of the American continent with decency and in order. In 1840 and again in 1844 Birney was the candidate of the Liberty party for president of the United States. In the second campaign he multiplied his very small vote received in the first race by nine. He was thrown from his horse, in 1845, and the final twelve years of his life were passed as an invalid. Birney died at Perth Amboy, New Jersey, November 25, 1857. Besides numerous contributions to the press, his principal writings are Letter on Colonization (1834); Addresses and Speeches (1835); American Churches the Bulwarks of American Slavery (1840); Speeches in England(1840); and An Examination of the Decision of the[Pg 93] United States Supreme Court in the Case of Strader et al. v. Graham (1850).

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); James G. Birney and His Times, by his son, William Birney (New York, 1890).


[From A Letter on the Political Obligations of Abolitionists (Boston, 1839)]

Within the last twelve or eighteen months, it is believed—after efforts, some successful, some not, had been begun to affect the elections—and whilst the most indefatigable exertions were being made by many of our influential, intelligent and liberal friends to convince the great body of the abolitionists of the necessity—the indispensable necessity—of breaking away from their old "parties," and uniting together in the use of the elective franchise for the advancement of the cause of human freedom in which we were engaged;—at this very time, and mainly, too, in that part of the country where political action had been most successful, and whence, from its promise of soon being wholly triumphant, great encouragement was derived by abolitionists everywhere, a sect has arisen in our midst, whose members regard it as of religious obligation, in no case, to exercise the elective franchise. This persuasion is part and parcel of the tenet which it is believed they have embraced—that as Christians have the precepts of the Gospel to direct, and the Spirit of God to guide them, all human governments, as necessarily including the idea of force to secure obedience, are not only superfluous, but unlawful encroachments on the Divine government, as ascertained from the sources above mentioned. Therefore, they refuse to do anything voluntarily, by which they would be considered as acknowledging the lawful existence of human governments. Denying to civil governments the right to use force, they easily deduce that family governments have no such right. Thus they would withhold from parents any power of personal chastisement or restraint for the correction of their children. They carry out to the full extent the "non-resistance" theory. To the first ruffian who would demand our purse, or oust us from our houses,[Pg 94] they are to be unconditionally surrendered, unless moral suasion be found sufficient to induce him to decline from his purpose. Our wives, our daughters, our sisters—our mothers we are to see set upon by the most brutal, without any effort on our part, except argument, to defend them—and even they themselves are forbidden to use in defense of their purity such powers as God has endowed them with for its protection, if resistance should be attended with any injury or destruction to the assailant. In short, the "No-Government" doctrines, as they are believed now to be embraced, seem to strike at the root of the social structure; and tend—so far as I am able to judge of their tendency—to throw society into entire confusion, and to renew, under the sanction of religion, scenes of anarchy and license that have generally heretofore been the offspring of the rankest infidelity and irreligion.

It is but justice to say—judging from the moral deportment of the adherents of the "No-Government" scheme—that so far from admitting, what I have supposed to be, its legitimate consequences, they would wholly deny and repudiate them.

These Sectaries have not as yet separated themselves from the American [Anti-Slavery] society. Far from it. They insist that their views are altogether harmonious with what is required for membership by the constitution.... But is this really so? Is the difference between those who seek to abolish any and every government of human institution, and those who prefer any government to a state of things in which every one may do what seemeth good in his own eyes—is the difference between them, I say, so small that they can act harmoniously under the same organization? When, in obedience to the principles of the society, I go to the polls and there call on my neighbors to unite with me in electing to Congress men who are in favor of Human Rights, I am met by a No-Government abolitionist inculcating on them the doctrine that Congress has no rightful authority to act at all in the premises—how can we proceed together? When I am animating my fellow-citizens to aid men in infusing into the government salutary influences which shall put an end to all oppression—my No-Government brother cries out at the top of his lungs, all governments are of the Devil(!) where[Pg 95] is our harmony! Our efficiency? We are in the condition of the two physicians called in to the same patient—one of whom should be intent on applying the proper remedies for expelling the disease from the body and thus restoring and purifying its functions; the other equally intent on utterly destroying body, members, functions and all. Could they be agreed, and could they walk together? It seems to me not. And simply because their aim, their objects are radically and essentially different. So with the No-Government and the Pro-Government abolitionists. One party is for sustaining and purifying governments, and bringing them to a perfect conformity with the principles of the Divine government—the other for destroying all government.


Thomas Corwin, witty, delightful "Tom" Corwin, was born near Paris, Kentucky, July 29, 1794. Before he was five years old, his father had taken him into the wilds of Ohio, the Lebanon of today. "Tom" Corwin was admitted to the bar, in 1818, after a slender education and a brief reading of the law. His wit and eloquence made his reputation rapidly and, in 1830, he found himself in the lower House of Congress. The whole country laughed at his inimitable speeches; and that he had a strong hold on the Ohio Whigs is certain as they returned him to the House for ten years. In 1840 Corwin was elected governor of Ohio, after a brilliant and successful state-wide campaign. He was incomparable on the stump, and he rode into the gubernatorial chair on an overwhelming Whig tide. Two years later, however, his former opponent, Wilson Shannon, defeated him for reëlection. In 1844 Corwin was sent to the United States Senate, in which body he renewed his House reputation as an orator. On the eve of the Mexican War, he made his memorable anti-war speech, which practically ruined his future political[Pg 96] career, as the country desired to fight the hated men on the border. But a more bravely beautiful speech was never made. President Fillmore chose Corwin his Secretary of the Treasury, in 1850. At the expiration of Fillmore's term, Corwin returned to the practice of law at Lebanon, Ohio. In 1858 he reëntered public life, serving a term in Congress; and, in 1861, President Lincoln appointed him minister to Mexico. Corwin remained in Mexico until the coming of Maximilian, when he returned to Washington to practice law. In the capital of the country he died, December 18, 1865. "Tom" Corwin was one of the most captivating of American orators, and most lovable of men.

Bibliography. Life and Speeches of Thomas Corwin, by Isaac Strohn (Dayton, Ohio, 1859); The Library of Oratory (New York, 1902, v. vi).


[From Life and Speeches of Thomas Corwin, by Isaac Strohn (Dayton, Ohio, 1859)]

Mr. President, this uneasy desire to augment our territory has depraved the moral sense and blunted the otherwise keen sagacity of our people. What has been the fate of all nations who have acted upon the idea that they must advance! Our young orators cherish this notion with a fervid but fatally mistaken zeal. They call it by the mysterious name of "destiny." "Our destiny," they say, is "onward," and hence they argue, with ready sophistry, the propriety of seizing upon any territory and any people that may lie in the way of our "fated" advance. Recently these progressives have grown classical; some assiduous student of antiquities has helped them to a patron saint. They have wandered back into the desolated Pantheon, and there, among the polytheistic relics of that "pale mother of dead empires," they have found a god whom these Romans, centuries gone by, baptized "Terminus."

Sir, I have heard much and read somewhat of this gentleman Terminus. Alexander, of whom I have spoken, was a devotee of[Pg 97] this divinity. We have seen the end of him and his empire. It was said to be an attribute of this god that he must always advance and never recede. So both republican and imperial Rome believed. It was, as they say, their destiny. And for a while it did seem to be even so. Roman Terminus did advance. Under the eagles of Rome he was carried from his home on the Tiber to the farthest East on the one hand, and to the far West, among the then barbarous tribes of western Europe, on the other.

But at length the time came when retributive justice had become "a destiny." The despised Gaul calls out the contemned Goth, and Attila, with his Huns answers back the battle-shout to both. The "blue-eyed nations of the North," in succession or united, pour forth their countless hosts of warriors upon Rome and Rome's always-advancing god Terminus. And now the battle-axe of the barbarian strikes down the conquering eagle of Rome. Terminus at last recedes, slowly at first, but finally he is driven to Rome, and from Rome to Byzantium. Whoever would know the further fate of this Roman deity, so recently taken under the patronage of American democracy, may find ample gratification of his curiosity in the luminous pages of Gibbon's Decline and Fall.

Such will find that Rome thought as you now think, that it was her destiny to conquer provinces and nations, and no doubt she sometimes said, as you say, "I will conquer a peace," and where now is she, the mistress of the world? The spider weaves his web in her palaces, the owl sings his watch-song in her towers. Teutonic power now lords it over the servile remnant, the miserable memento of old and once omnipotent Rome. Sad, very sad, are the lessons which time has written for us. Through and in them all I see nothing but the inflexible execution of that old law which ordains as eternal that cardinal rule, "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's goods, nor anything which is his." Since I have lately heard so much about the dismemberment of Mexico I have looked back to see how, in the course of events, which some call "Providence," it has fared with other nations who engaged in this work of dismemberment. I see that in the latter half of the eighteenth century three powerful nations, Russia, Austria, and Prussia, united in the dismemberment of Poland. They[Pg 98] said, too, as you say, "It is our destiny." They "wanted room." Doubtless each of these thought, with his share of Poland, his power was too strong ever to fear invasion, or even insult. One had his California, another his New Mexico, and the third his Vera Cruz. Did they remain untouched and incapable of harm? Alas! no—far, very far, from it. Retributive justice must fulfill its destiny, too.


Henry Bidleman Bascom, the distinguished Methodist preacher and orator, was born at Hancock, New York, May 27, 1796. He received a scanty education, and when but eighteen years of age he was licensed to preach by the Ohio conference of the Methodist church. He was a circuit-rider, traveling more than four hundred miles upon horseback his first year in the work, and receiving the princely salary of $12.10 for his year's services. Bascom was too florid for the Ohio brethren, and they caused him to be transferred to Tennessee and Kentucky circuits. In this work he won a wide reputation as a pulpit orator. In 1823 Henry Clay had Bascom appointed chaplain of the House of Representatives, but his long sermons did not please the members, and he was not a great success in Washington. Bascom was elected as the first president of Madison College, Uniontown, Pennsylvania, in 1827, but two years later he became an agent for the American Colonization Society. From 1831 to 1841 he was professor of moral science and belles-lettres in Augusta College, Augusta, Kentucky, the first Methodist college in the world. The Methodist church having taken over Transylvania University, at Lexington, Dr. Bascom was elected president of that institution in 1842. He revived the ancient seat of learning to a wonderful degree,[Pg 99] becoming another Horace Holley, but the rebirth proved ephemeral. In 1844 President Bascom protested against the action of the General Conference of the Methodist church concerning slavery, and, in the Louisville conference of 1845, he took a most prominent part, winning for himself the title of "father of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South." Dr. Bascom was editor of the Southern Methodist Review for several years; and in 1848 he resigned the presidency of Transylvania University, only to be elected a bishop in the branch of the Methodist church he had helped to establish. He was ordained as bishop in May, 1850, and almost immediately set out for Missouri, where he held his first and only conference. On his return to Kentucky he was in very poor health; and he died at Louisville, September 8, 1850. Bishop Bascom was the greatest Methodist preacher Kentucky can claim; and he was also an able writer. His works include Sermons from the Pulpit; Lectures on Infidelity; Lectures and Essays on Moral and Mental Science; and Methodism and Slavery. In 1910 a portrait in oils of Bishop Bascom was painted by Paul Sawyier, the Kentucky artist, for Transylvania University.

Bibliography. Life of Henry Bidleman Bascom, D.D., LL.D., by M. M. Henkle (Nashville, Tennessee, 1856); The Transylvanian (Lexington, Kentucky, June, 1910).


[From The Life of Henry Bidleman Bascom, D. D., LL. D., by Rev. M. M. Henkle (Nashville, Tennessee, 1856)]

I have seen, surveyed, and communed with the whole!—and awed and bewildered, as if enchanted before the revealment of a mystery, I attempt to write. You ask me, in your last, for some detailed, veritable account of the Falls, and I should be glad to gratify you; but how shall I essay to paint a scene that so utterly baffles all conception, and renders worse than fruitless every attempt at description? In five minutes after my arrival, on the[Pg 100] evening of the fifth, I descended the winding-path from the "Pavillion," on the Canadian side, and, for the first time in my life, saw this unequaled cascade from "Table Rock;" the whole indescribable scene, in bold outline, bursting on my view. I had heard and read much, and imagined more of what was before me. I was perfectly familiar with the often-told, the far-traveled story of what I saw; but the overpowering reality on which I was gazing, motionless as the rock on which I stood, deprived me of recollection, annihilated all curiosity; and with emotions of sublimity till now unfelt, and all unearthly, the involuntary exclamation escaped me, "God of Grandeur! what a scene!"

But the majesty of the sight, and the interest of the moment, how depict them? The huge amplitude of water, tumbling in foam above, and dashing on, arched and pillared as it glides, until it reaches the precipice of the chute, and then, in one vast column, bounding with maddening roar and rush, into the depths beneath, presents a spectacle so unutterably appalling, that language falters; words are no longer signs, and I despair giving you any idea of what I saw and felt. Yet this is not all. The eye and mind necessarily take in other objects, as parts of the grand panorama, forests, cliffs, and islands; banks, foam, and spray; wood, rock, and precipice; dimmed with the rising fog and mist, and obscurely gilded by the softening tints of the rainbow. These all belong to the picture; and the effect of the whole is immeasurably heightened by the noise of the cataract, now reminding you of the reverberations of the heavens in a tempest, and then of the eternal roar of ocean, when angered by the winds!

The concave bed of rock, from which the water falls some two hundred feet into the almost boundless reservoir beneath, is the section of a circle, which, at first sight, from "Table Rock," presents something like the geometrical curve of the rainbow; and the wonders of the grand "crescent," thus advantageously thrown upon the eye in combination, and the appropriate sensations and conceptions heightened by the crash and boom of the waters, render the sight more surpassingly sublime, than anything I have ever looked upon, or conceived of. As it regards my thoughts and feelings at the time, I can help you to no conception[Pg 101] of their character. Overwhelming astonishment was the only bond between thought and thought; and wild, vague, and boundless were the associations of the hour! Before me, the strength and fullness of the congregated "lakes of the north," were enthroned and concentrated within a circumference embraced by a single glance of the eye! Here I saw, rolling and dashing, at the rate of twenty-five hundred millions of tons per day, nearly one half of all the fresh water upon the surface of the globe! On the American side, I beheld a vast deluge, nine hundred feet in breadth, with a fall of one hundred and eighty or ninety, met, fifty feet above the level of the gulf, by a huge projection of rock, which seems to break the descent and continuity of the flood, only to increase its fierce and overwhelming bound. And turning to the "crescent," I saw the mingled rush of foam and tide, dashing with fearful strife and desperate emulation—four hundred yards of the sheet rough and sparry, and the remaining three hundred a deep sealike mass of living green—rolling and heaving like a sheet of emerald. Even imagination failed me, and I could think of nothing but ocean let loose from his bed, and seeking a deeper gulf below! The fury of the water, at the termination of its fall, combined with the columned strength of the cataract, and the deafening thunder of the flood, are at once inconceivable and indescribable. No imagination, however creative, can correspond with the grandeur of the reality.

I have already mentioned, and it is important that you keep it in view, the ledge of rock, the verge of the cataract, rising like a wall of equal height, and extending in semicircular form across the whole bed of the river, a distance of more than two thousand feet; and the impetuous flood, conforming to this arrangement, in making its plunge, with mountain weight, into the great horseshoe basin beneath, exhibits a spectacle of the sublime, in geographical scenery, without, perhaps, a parallel in nature. As I leaned from "Table Rock," and cast my eye downward upon the billowy turbulence of the angry depth, where the waters were tossing and whirling, coiling and springing, with the energy of an earthquake, and a rapidity that almost mocked my vision, I found the scene sufficient to appal a sterner spirit than mine; and I was glad to turn away and relieve my mind by a sight of the[Pg 102] surrounding scenery; bays, islands, shores, and forests, everywhere receding in due perspective. The rainbows of the "crescent" and American side, which are only visible from the western bank of the Niagara, and in the afternoon, seem to diminish somewhat from the awfulness of the scene, and to give it an aspect of rich and mellow grandeur, not unlike the bow of promise, throwing its assuring radiance over the retiring waters of the deluge.


James Turner Morehead, Kentucky's most scholarly governor, was born near Shepherdsville, Kentucky, May 24, 1797. He was prepared for Transylvania University, Lexington, and there he studied from 1813 to 1815. He studied law under John J. Crittenden and, in 1818, entered upon the practice at Bowling Green, Kentucky. Ten years later Morehead was in the Kentucky legislature, and he was returned for several sessions. In 1832 he was a delegate to the Baltimore convention which nominated Henry Clay for the presidency; and while in Baltimore he himself was nominated for lieutenant-governor of Kentucky, with John Breathitt for governor. They were elected in August, 1832, but the Governor died on February 21, 1834, and Morehead succeeded to his office on the following day. He served until September, 1836. Upon the expiration of his term, Governor Morehead resumed the practice of law at Frankfort. He was elected United States Senator from Kentucky, in 1841, and he served until 1847. Senator Morehead was an attractive public speaker, and when it was known in Washington that he was to make a speech the galleries were usually well filled. After the expiration of his term, he practiced law at Covington, Kentucky. Senator Morehead had the most extensive collection of books and manuscripts upon the history of Kentucky and[Pg 103] the West of any man of his day and generation. After his death, which occurred at Covington, Kentucky, December 28, 1854, his library was purchased by the Young Men's Mercantile Library Association of Cincinnati. Morehead's Address in Commemoration of the First Settlement of Kentucky, at Boonesborough (Frankfort, 1840, 181 pp.), rescued and preserved numerous documents of great historical importance. In the preparation of his great History of the United States, George Bancroft is said to have relied upon this famous address of Morehead for much of his information concerning the early history of the West. Morehead also published Practice and Proceedings at Law in Kentucky (1846). The fine face of this scholar and statesman is one of Matthew Harris Jouett's most luminous canvasses.[7]

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. iv); National Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1906, v. xiii).


[From An Address in Commemoration of the First Settlement of Kentucky (Frankfort, Kentucky, 1840)]

The first successful attempt to explore the Kentucky country was made by John Finley, a backwoodsman of North Carolina, in 1767. He was attended by a few companions, as adventurous as himself, whose names have escaped the notice of history. They were evidently a party of hunters, and were prompted to the bold and hazardous undertaking, for the purpose of indulging in their favorite pursuits. Of Finley and his comrades, and of the course and extent of their journey, little is now known. That they were of the pure blood, and endowed with the genuine qualities, of the pioneers, is manifestly undeniable. That they passed over the Cumberland, and through the intermediate country to the[Pg 104] Kentucky river, and penetrated the beautiful valley of the Elkhorn, there are no sufficient reasons to doubt. It is enough, however, to embalm their memory in our hearts, and to connect their names with the imperishable memorials of our early history, that they were the first adventurers that plunged into the dark and enchanted wilderness of Kentucky—that of all their contemporaries they saw her first—and saw her in the pride of her virgin beauty—at the dawn of summer—in the fullness of her vegetation—her soil, instinct with fertility, covered with the most luxuriant verdure—the air perfumed with the fragrance of flowers, and her tall forests looming in all their primeval magnificence.

How long Finley lived, or where he died, the silence of history does not enable us to know. That his remains are now mingled with the soil that he discovered, there is some reason to hope, for he conducted Boone to Kentucky in 1769—and there the curtain drops upon him forever. It is fit it should be raised. It is fit that justice, late and tardy that it be, should be done to the memory of the first of the pioneers. And what can be more appropriate, than that the first movement should be made for the performance of such a duty, on the day of the commemoration of the discovery and settlement of the Commonwealth?


Lewis Collins, the Kentucky historian, was born near Lexington, Kentucky, on Christmas Day, 1797. When a boy he entered the printing office of Joel R. Lyle, editor of The Paris Citizen, where he worked for more than a year as a printer. He removed to Mason county, Kentucky, to become associate editor of the Washington Union. On November 1, 1820, Lewis Collins purchased the Maysville Eagle, which had been established six years prior to his purchase, and he made it one of the best country newspapers ever published in Kentucky. In 1823 he was married[Pg 105] to a sister of Benjamin O. Peers, afterwards president of Transylvania University. Collins was editor of the Eagle for twenty-seven years, when he retired in order to give his entire attention to his Historical Sketches of Kentucky (Maysville, 1847). This was the first illustrated history of Kentucky, and easily the most comprehensive that had appeared. The histories of Marshall and Butler began at the beginning, but both concluded with the year of 1812, while Collins brought his work down to 1844. His was a mine of historic lore, arranged in departments, and not altogether readable as a continuous narrative. It was the foundation upon which his son, Richard H. Collins, was later to build the most magnificent state history ever published. Lewis Collins was presiding judge of the Mason county court from 1851 to 1854. He was a just judge, a painstaking chronicler of his people's past, and a fine type of Christian citizen. Judge Collins died at Lexington, Kentucky, January 29, 1870. The Kentucky legislature passed an appropriate resolution in which his life was commended and his death deplored.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by Z. F. Smith (Louisville, Kentucky, 1892); Kentucky in the Nation's History, by R. M. McElroy (New York, 1909).


[From Historical Sketches of Kentucky (Maysville and Cincinnati, 1847)]

The late H. P. Peers, of the city of Maysville, laid the foundation for the work which is now presented to the reading community. Mr. Peers designed it to be simply a small Gazetteer of the State; and had collected, and partially arranged for publication, the major part of the materials, comprising a description of the towns and counties. Upon his decease, the materials passed into the hands of the Author, who determined to remodel them, and make such additions as would give permanency and increased value to the work. He has devoted much labor to this object; but circumstances having rendered its publication necessary[Pg 106] at an earlier day than was contemplated, some errors may have escaped, which more time, and a fuller investigation, would have enabled him to detect.

Serious obstacles have been encountered in the preparation of the Biographical Sketches. Many of those which appear in the work, were prepared from the personal recollections of the Author; while others have been omitted because he did not know to whom he could apply for them, or having applied, and in some instances repeatedly, failed in procuring them. This is his apology for the non-appearance of many names in that department which are entitled to a distinguished place in the annals of Kentucky.

In the preparation of the work, one design of the Author has been to preserve, in a durable form, those rich fragments of local and personal history, many of which exist, at present, only in the ephemeral form of oral tradition, or are treasured up among the recollections of the aged actors in the stirring scenes, the memory of which is thus perpetuated. These venerable witnesses from a former age, are rapidly passing away from our midst, and with them will be buried the knowledge of much that is most interesting in the primitive history of the commonwealth. It is from sources such as we have mentioned, that the materials for the future historian are to be drawn; and, like the scattered leaves of the Sybil, these frail mementos of the past should be gathered up and preserved with religious veneration. If the Author shall have succeeded, in thus redeeming from oblivion any considerable or important portion of the early history of the State, his design will be fully accomplished, and his labor amply rewarded.

Of all the members of this great republican confederacy, there is none whose history is more rich in the variety, quality, and interest of its materials. The poet, the warrior, and the statesman, can each find subjects, the contemplation of which will instruct him in his art; and to the general reader, it would, perhaps, be impossible to present a field of more varied and attractive interest.

[Pg 107]


Mrs. Julia Ann (Hieronymous) Tevis, author of a delightful autobiography, was born near Winchester, Kentucky, December 5, 1799. When but seven years old her parents removed to Virginia, settling at Winchester, and at the female academy of the town her education was begun. In 1813 Miss Hieronymous's family removed to Georgetown, D. C., where her education was continued under private teachers—"a considerable portion of my time was devoted to music, drawing, and French, with various kinds of embroidery." Two years later she was placed in the finishing school of an English woman in Washington where French and music continued to be her major subjects. Miss Hieronymous completed her training at the school of Mrs. Stone in Washington when nineteen years of age, and returned to her home to read and study. She spent many hours at the Capital meeting and hearing most of the famous men of her time. At the age of twenty years she became a school-ma'am at Wytheville, Virginia, and the following sixty years of her life were devoted to teaching. She later taught at Abingdon, Virginia, where she united with the Methodist church, and where she was married on March 9, 1824, to Rev. John Tevis (1792-1861), a Kentucky Methodist preacher. Mrs. Tevis desired to continue teaching, and upon her removal to her husband's home at Shelbyville, Kentucky, she opened Science Hill Academy. This famous old institution for the instruction of young women—founded March 25, 1825, and the second Protestant female academy established in the Mississippi Valley—has continued without interruption until the present time. The remaining years of the founder's life were filled with the school, her girls, her children, her cares and perplexities. In 1875 the semi-centennial of the founding of Science Hill was celebrated in a fitting manner. Some time later Mrs.[Pg 108] Tevis closed the manuscripts of her autobiography, entitled Sixty Years in a School-Room (Cincinnati, 1878), a large work of nearly five hundred pages, in which the details of her splendid service are ably set forth. Mrs. Tevis died at Shelbyville, Kentucky, April 21, 1880. Her pupils erected a fitting monument to her memory.

Bibliography. The chief authority for the facts of Mrs. Tevis's life is, of course, her autobiography; Annual Catalogues of Science Hill.


[From Sixty Years in a School-Room (Cincinnati, 1878)]

For many years we kept up the custom of crowning a "Rose Queen" in May, and enjoying a holiday in the woods. Happily for the girls, I greeted the return of the festival day with a gladness almost equal to theirs, for I retained enough of the freshness of youth in my heart to enable me to participate with zest in the joys of childhood.

"Once upon a time," after a long severe Winter, followed by a Spring of unusual beauty, it was determined to celebrate the day with great rejoicings. The girls were wild with delight at the prospect of a whole day's release from slates, books, and blackboards—a charming episode in the drudgery of their everyday life. Ah, happy children! to whom every glimpse of nature is beautiful, and every blade of grass a marvel! Give them ever so small a bit of green meadow checkered with sunshine and shade upon which to revel among buttercups and daisies, and "little they'll reck" how the world goes on.

There was but little opportunity for canvassing or intrigue in the election of Queen. Fanny Henning was chosen by acclamation as best fitted to grace the regal authority. Fanny possessed a mind and a character as transparent as a clear brook. Her ingenuous face, her self-forgetting and amiable bearing towards her companions made her the loved and cherished of them all. She also held a distinguished place in the estimation of her teachers for superior excellence, dutiful affection, and modest deportment. Thus it was universally conceded that "Fair-handed[Pg 109] Spring" might well resign to Fanny her sovereignty for one day over the brilliant treasures of garden, glade, and forest, awakened into life and brightened into beauty by her magic wand.

The rosy hours followed each other in quick succession until within a few days of the anticipated time, when lo! the "queen elect" broke out with measles. The whole school was filled with dismay, bitter tears of disappointment were shed by some; others predicted that she would be well enough to go through the ceremony. Fanny, uniting in their hopeful aspirations, prepared her coronation speech and rehearsed it to perfection, for, though confined to her room, she was not really ill. On the eve of the appointed day, however, the doctor pronounced her too feeble to endure the fatigue. What was to be done? The trophies of many loyal hearts were ready to be laid at the feet of the queen. Spirit hands seemed dispensing blessings, and guardian angels extending their wings over these healthful, happy girls as they diligently wrought sparkling wreaths and arranged beautiful bouquets.

The banners were prepared, the white dresses were trimmed with evergreen. The Seasons, the maids of honor, and all the officials were in waiting, but "Hamlet" could not be left out of the play. One modest little girl, after listening in silence to the suggestions of the others, raised her eyes to my face and said hesitatingly:

"Can't Emma Maxwell be queen in Fanny's place?"

"Oh, no!" said another; "she could not possibly learn the speech in time."

"No, indeed!" exclaimed several voices at once, "that would be impossible; but she might read it."

"Yes, yes! let her read it; the queen's speeches are read in Parliament!"

"Will you accept the proposition?" said I, turning to Emma.

"I think I can learn it," she replied, "and will try if you wish it."

The coronation was to take place the next morning at ten o'clock. A previous rehearsal would be impossible; but what Emma proudly determined to do was generously accomplished.

The evening star looked out bright and clear in the blue deep,[Pg 110] thrilling the hearts of these young girls with the prospect of a pleasant morrow.

Most of them were stirring before sunrise. "Is it clear?" "Are we going?" And from every room issued the sound of cheerful voices; and then such shouts, such hurrying and bathing and dressing as was seldom known before.

Ten o'clock came, and the yard, where the temporary throne was erected, was soon filled with spectators and invited guests, mingling with the children and participating in their pleasure. The proxy queen bore her blushing honors meekly, going through all the coronation ceremonies with a charming dignity. She stood Calypso-like among her train of attendants in full view of the audience who listened in breathless silence to her address. I watched her closely; she seemed to plant her feet firmly, as if to still the beatings of her heart; no gesture except a gentle motion of the right arm as she swayed her scepter majestically around, her eyes steadily fixed upon some object beyond, with which she seemed completely absorbed. Not a word was misplaced, not a sentence omitted, of a speech long enough for a Parliamentary harangue. No one prompted, nor did she once turn her eyes toward the scroll she held in her left hand. Enthusiastic and excessive were the rejoicings of her juvenile auditors.

Fanny witnessed the whole ceremony through a convenient window which framed for her a living picture of ineffable beauty, and on this clear day, with only a few white Spring clouds floating over the bluest of skies, it was a sight of earth that makes one understand heaven.

The Seasons followed in quick succession, proffering homage to the queen; then came the "rosy Hours" with their sweet-toned voices, and the ceremony was completed by a few words from "Fashion and Modesty," the latter gently pushing the former aside, and casting a veil over the burning blushes of the queen. The address being finished, queen and attendants walked in procession to a grove that skirted the town, where beauty filled the eye, and singing birds warbled sweet music. When tired of play, a more substantial entertainment was provided. Group after group spread the white cloth on the soft green turf, and surrounded the plentiful repast, gratefully acknowledging the Hand[Pg 111] that supplies our wants from day to day. He who called our attention to the "lilies of the field," stamps a warrant of sacredness upon our rejoicings, in all that he has made.

There was something very remarkable in the quickness and facility with which Emma Maxwell memorized the queen's speech. She was a girl of more than ordinary vivacity, of a highly imaginative, impressionable nature, and seemed to have the gift of bewitching all who knew her. She occupied a commanding position in her class as a good reciter, but I had not hitherto noticed any great facility in memorizing. I called her the next day, and asked her to recite the piece to me alone. She stared rather vacantly at me, and said:

"I can not remember a sentence of it."

"What! when you repeated it with so much facility yesterday! explain yourself."

"I do not know how it is," she replied, "that though I can learn with the utmost precision, mechanically, whatever I choose, in a short time, yet under such circumstances my memory has not the power of retention. If my train of repetition had been interrupted for one moment yesterday, I should have failed utterly."

"What were you looking at so intently the whole time?"

"I was looking at certain objects about the yard and house in connection with which I had studied the speech the evening before."

"Yes; but you certainly can repeat some portion of it to me?"

"Not one sentence connectedly; it has all passed from my mind like a shadow on the wall."

Yet she was a girl of good judgment, read much, talked well, and possessed in an eminent degree the indispensable requisite of a good memory—power of attention.

[Pg 112]


Robert Jefferson Breckinridge, LL.D., one of Kentucky's most prolific writers for the public prints, was born at Cabell's Dale, near Lexington, Kentucky, March 8, 1800. He was the son of John Breckinridge, President Jefferson's Attorney-General. He studied at Princeton and Yale, and was graduated from Union College in 1819. Breckinridge then read law and was admitted to the Lexington, Kentucky, bar in 1823. He practiced law for eight years, during part of which time he was a member of the Kentucky legislature. Realizing that Kentucky would oppose the emancipation of the slaves, in which he heartily believed, Breckinridge decided to quit the law and politics for the church. He studied theology and became pastor of the Second Presbyterian church in Baltimore, which pastorate he held for thirteen years. In 1845 Dr. Breckinridge was elected president of Jefferson College (now Washington and Jefferson College), at Washington, Pennsylvania, but two years later he resigned the presidency of the college in order to accept the pastorate of the First Presbyterian church of Lexington, Kentucky. In 1848 Dr. Breckinridge was elected superintendent of public instruction of Kentucky; and in 1853 he became professor of theology in the Danville Theological Seminary, which position he held until his death. He was chairman of the Baltimore national convention of 1864 which nominated Abraham Lincoln for the presidency. Dr. Breckinridge's writings include Travels in France, Germany, etc. (Philadelphia, 1839); Popery in the XIX. Century in the United States (1841); Memoranda of Foreign Travel (Baltimore, 1845); The Internal Evidence of Christianity (1852); The Knowledge of God Objectively Considered (New York, 1858); and The Knowledge of God Subjectively Considered (New York, 1859). These two last named works, of enormous proportions, are[Pg 113] Dr. Breckinridge's greatest theological and literary productions. He also published Kentucky School Reports (1848-1853). While a resident of Baltimore he was one of the editors of The Literary and Religious Magazine, and of its successor, The Spirit of the Nineteenth Century, in both of which publications he carried on many bitter and never-ending discussions with the Roman Catholics concerning theological and historical questions. He was also editor of The Danville Quarterly Review for several years. A complete collection of Dr. Breckinridge's books, debates, articles, and pamphlets, upon slavery, temperance, Popery, Universalism, Presbyterianism, education, agriculture, and politics, would form a five-foot shelf of books.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i).


[From The Knowledge of God Subjectively Considered (New York, 1859)]

The completeness of the Plan of Salvation seems to be absolute. The adaptedness of all its parts to each other, and to their own special end—and the adaptedness of the whole and of every part, to the great end of all, the eradication of sin and misery; exhibits a subject, the greatest, the most intricate, and the most remote of all in a manner so precise and clear; that the sacred Scriptures, even if they had no grace and no mercy to offer to us personally, might justly challenge the very highest place as the most stupendous monument of sublime and successful thought. What then ought we to think of them, when all this glorious intelligence is merely tributary to our salvation? The end of this infinite completeness, only to pour into our polluted and thoughtless hearts, inexhaustible supplies of grace—that we may be extricated from a condition utterly hopeless without that grace ... and be brought to a condition unspeakably blessed to us and glorious to God? Yet this is the overwhelming conclusion to which every[Pg 114] just consideration of them forces us to come; the conclusion to which the imperfect disclosure which has now been attempted, of a single point in this divine system, wholly compels us. In this deep conviction, therefore, and as the conclusion of all that has now been advanced, I venture to define, that Sanctification is a benefit of the Covenant of Redemption—being a work of grace, on the part of the triune God, wherein the elect who have been Effectually Called, Regenerated, Justified, and Adopted, are, through the virtue of the death and resurrection of Christ, by the indwelling of the Word and Spirit, through the use of the divine ordinances, and by the power of God with them, enabled more and more to die unto sin, to be renewed in the spirit of their mind, and to live unto righteousness, in an increasing conformity to the image of God, to his great Glory, and their growth in holiness.


Mrs. Caroline Lee Hentz, novelist, was born at Lancaster, Massachusetts, June 1, 1800. When twenty-four years of age she was married to N. M. Hentz, a Frenchman, then associated with George Bancroft in conducting the Round Hill School at Northampton, Massachusetts. Two years after her marriage her husband was elected to the chair of modern languages in the University of North Carolina, and this position he held until 1830, when he removed to Covington, Kentucky, where he and his wife conducted a private school. Covington was the birthplace of Mrs. Hentz's first literary work. The directors of the Arch Street theatre, Philadelphia, had offered a prize of five hundred dollars for the best original tragedy founded on the conquest of the Moors in Spain, and Mrs. Hentz submitted De Lara, or, the Moorish Bride, which was awarded first place, but the prize was never paid the author. De Lara was later published and successfully produced on the stage. This encouraged Mrs. Hentz to[Pg 115] write another tragedy, entitled Lamorah, or, the Western Wild, a tragedy of Indian life, which was staged in Cincinnati and published at Columbus, Georgia. Her Constance of Werdenberg was written at Covington. After two years at Covington, Mrs. Hentz crossed the Ohio river and opened a school at Cincinnati. Her novel, Lovell's Folly, was written there. In 1834 she removed to Alabama, and this State was her home for the subsequent fourteen years. Her first widely successful novel, Aunt Patty's Scrap-Bag (Philadelphia, 1846) was followed by her generally accepted masterpiece, Linda, or, the Young Pilot of the Belle Creole (1850). Now came in rapid succession her other works: Rena, or, the Snow Bird (1851); Marcus Warland (1852); Eoline; Wild Jack; Helen and Arthur; Ugly Effie; The Planter's Northern Bride (1854); Love after Marriage (1854); The Banished Son; Robert Graham (1856); and Ernest Lynwood (1856), her last book and by some critics regarded as her best. Mrs. Hentz began her literary work in Kentucky, as indicated above, and, though the claim of Kentucky is rather slender upon her it is, nevertheless, legitimate. She died at Marianna, Florida, February 11, 1856.

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. iii); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, Georgia, 1909, v. vi).


[From Marcus Warland (1852)]

Marcus sat beside the Long Moss Spring, the morning sun-beams glancing through the broad leaves of the magnolia and the brilliant foliage of the holly, and playing on his golden hair. He held in his hand a fishing-rod, whose long line floated on the water; and though his eye was fixed on the buoyant cork, there was no hope or excitement in its gaze. His face was pale and wore a severe expression, very different from the usual joyousness and thoughtlessness of childhood. Even when the silvery[Pg 116] trout and shining perch, lured by the bait, hung quivering on the hook, and were thrown, fluttering like wounded birds through the air, to fall panting, then pulseless, at his side, he showed no consciousness of success, no elation at the number of his scaly victims. Tears, even, large and slowly gathering tears, rolled gradually and reluctantly down his fair oval cheeks; they were not like the sudden, drenching shower, that leaves the air purer and the sky bluer, but the drops that issue from the wounded bark formed of the life-blood of the tree.

Beautiful was the spot where the boy sat, and beautiful the vernal morning that awakened Nature to the joy and the beauty of youth. The fountain, over whose basin he was leaning, was one of those clear, deep, pellucid springs, that gush up in the green wilds of southern Georgia, forming a feature of such exquisite loveliness in the landscape, that the traveler pauses on the margin, feeling as if he had found one of those enchanted springs of which we read in fairy land, whose waters are too bright, too pure, too serene for earth.

The stone which formed the basin of the fountain was smooth and calcareous, hollowed out by the friction of the waters, and gleaming white and cold through their diaphanous drapery. In the centre of this basin, where the spring gushed in all its depth and strength, it was so dark it looked like an opaque body, impervious to the eye, whence it flowed over the edge of its rocky receptacle in a full, rejoicing current, sweeping over its mossy bed, and bearing its sounding tribute to the Chattahoochee, "rolling rapidly." The mossy bed to which we have alluded was not the verdant velvet that covers with a short, curling nap the ancient rock and the gray old tree, but long, slender, emerald-green plumes, waving under the water, and assuming through its mirror a tinge of deep and irradiant blue. Nothing can be imagined more rich and graceful than this carpet for the fountain's silvery tread, and which seems to bend beneath it, as the light spray rustling in the breeze. The golden water-lily gleamed up through the crystal, and floated along the margin on its long and undulating stems.

[Pg 117]


John Price Durbin, Seventh President of Dickinson College, was born near Paris, Kentucky, October 10, 1800. He was apprenticed to a cabinet-maker in Paris, and the meager wages he received were invested in books. In 1819 Durbin became a Methodist circuit-rider. He afterwards studied at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio, and was graduated from Cincinnati College in 1825. In the fall of that year he became professor of languages in Augusta College, Augusta, Kentucky, and he occupied the chair until 1831, when he was elected chaplain of the United States Senate. In the next year Dr. Durbin was elected professor of natural sciences in Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, He remained at Wesleyan but one year, when he was chosen editor of the New York Christian Advocate and Journal. In 1834 Editor Durbin became President Durbin of Dickinson College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania. He is regarded as the greatest head the college has ever known. During vacations Dr. Durbin traveled extensively in Europe and the Orient, and these journeys are best preserved in his books. In the 1844 General Conference of the Methodist church he was in the thickest of the great fight over the slavery question; and in the following year he resigned as president of Dickinson, after more than ten years of distinguished success in the management of the ancient college. He now returned to the active pastorate, taking charge of the Union Methodist church in Philadelphia. From 1850 to 1872 Dr. Durbin was secretary of the Methodist Missionary Society, in the interest of which he visited Europe in 1867. He raised many millions of dollars for foreign missions while he was in charge of the society. He was the founder of foreign missions in Bulgaria. Dr. Durbin was an eloquent and persuasive preacher, an able administrator, and during the latter years of his life he wielded[Pg 118] a wonderful influence in the Methodist church. He died at New York City, October 17, 1876. His works include Observations in Europe (New York, 1844, 2 vols.); Observations in Egypt, Palestine, Syria, and Asia Minor (New York, 1845, 2 vols.); and he edited the American edition of Wood's Mosaic History of the Creation (New York, 1831). Dr. Durbin was a rather prolific contributor to religious and secular periodicals. His Observations in Europe is the best literary work he did.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. ii).


[From Observations in Europe (New York, 1844, v. ii)]

The first impression of London is usually wonder at its immensity. I received this impression in its full force, as the reader will have already perceived, in coming up the Thames. Nor did it diminish in the course of my rambles through the great metropolis, subsequently. When the stranger first leaves the river, and plunges into the thronged streets, he absolutely becomes dizzy in the whirl of busy life around him. Men sweep by him in masses; at times the way seems wedged with them: wagons, carts, omnibuses, hacks, and coaches block up the avenues, and make it quite an enterprise to cross them. Every day my amazement increased at the extent, the activity, the wealth of London. The impression was totally different from that of Paris. The French capital strikes you as the seat of human enjoyment. You find the art of life, so far as mere physical good is concerned, in perfection there. No wish need be ungratified. Your taste may be gratified with the finest music, the most fascinating spectacles, the most splendid works of art in the world. You may eat and drink when and where you please; in half an hour, almost any delicacy that earth has produced or art invented is set before you. You may spend days and weeks in visiting her museums, her hospitals, her gardens, her cemeteries, her libraries, her palaces, and yet remain unsatisfied. In London everything is different.[Pg 119] Men are active, but it is in pursuit of wealth. In general they do not seem to enjoy life. The arts are cultivated to a small extent by a small class of society; the mass seem hardly to know that arts exist. No splendid collections are open, without fee or reward, to the public, or to you. You can purchase gratification, but of a lower order than in Paris, and at a higher price. Except a few lions—the Docks, the Tunnel, Westminster Abbey, &c.—nearly everything that the city has to show to a stranger can be seen as you ride along the streets. When you leave Paris you have just begun to enjoy it, and desire to return again; you leave London convinced, indeed, of its vastness and wealth, but tired of gazing at dingy buildings and thronged streets, and are satisfied without another visit. Such, at least, were my own impressions. Apart from private friendships and professional interests, I have no care to see London again.


Fortunatus Cosby, Junior, poet and editor, the son of a distinguished lawyer, was born near Louisville, Kentucky, May 2, 1801. He was educated at Yale and Transylvania, then studied law, but, like so many literary men have done, never practiced. Cosby was a passionate lover of books, and most of his life was spent among his collection. He was wealthy and well able to indulge his taste to any extreme. His kinsman, President Thomas Jefferson, offered to make him secretary of the legation at London, but he declined. Cosby was some years later superintendent of the Philadelphia public schools, and a contributor to Graham's Magazine, as well as to other high-class periodicals. In 1846 he was editor of the Louisville Examiner, the first Kentucky paper devoted to emancipation of the slaves. In 1860 Cosby was appointed consul to Geneva, and the next eight years of his life were devoted to his diplomatic duties and to traveling. He returned[Pg 120] to the United States in 1868, and to his old home near Louisville. There death found him in June, 1871. Several of his friends, which included William Cullen Bryant, Rufus W. Griswold, and George D. Prentice, often urged Cosby to collect his verse and bring it together in a volume, but he was "too careless of his fame to do it;" and "many waifs he from time to time contributed to the periodicals," are now lost to the general public. He is, of course, well represented in all of the anthologies of American poetry, but a collection of his writings should be made. Cosby's best work is to be seen in his Fireside Fancies, Ode to the Mocking Bird, The Traveler in the Desert, and A Dream of Long Ago. He has often been pronounced the best song writer this country has produced; and that he was a man of fine culture, an ardent lover of books and Nature, and a maker of charming and exquisite verse can be readily proved.

Bibliography. The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860); Blades o' Bluegrass, by Fannie P. Dickey (Louisville, Kentucky, 1892).


[From The Poets and Poetry of the West, edited by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860)]

By the dim and fitful firelight
Musing all alone,
Memories of old companions
Dead, or strangers grown;—
Books that we have read together,
Rambles in sweet summer weather,
Thoughts released from earthly tether—
Fancy made my own.
In my cushioned arm-chair sitting
Far into the night,
[Pg 121] Sleep, with leaden wings extinguished
All the flickering light;
But, the thoughts that soothed me waking,
Care, and grief, and pain forsaking,
Still the self-same path were taking—
Pilgrims, still in sight.
Indistinct and shadowy phantoms
Of the sacred dead,
Absent faces bending fondly
O'er my drooping head,
In my dreams were woven quaintly,
Dim at first, but calm and saintly,
As the stars that glimmer faintly
From their misty bed.
Presently a lustrous brightness
Eye could scarce behold,
Gave to my enchanted vision
Looks no longer cold,
Features that no clouds encumber,
Forms refreshed by sweetest slumber,
And, of all that blessed number,
Only one was old.
Graceful were they as the willow
By the zephyr stirred!
Bright as childhood when expecting
An approving word!
Fair as when from earth they faded,
Ere the burnished brow was shaded,
Or, the hair with silver braided,
Or lament was heard.
Roundabout in silence moving
Slowly to and fro—
Life-like as I knew and loved them
In their spring-time glow;—
[Pg 122] Beaming with a loving luster,
Close, and closer still they cluster
Round my chair that radiant muster,
Just as long ago.
Once, the aged, breathing comfort
O'er my fainting cheek,
Whispered words of precious meaning
Only she could speak;
Scarce could I my rapture smother,
For I knew it was my mother,
And to me there was no other
Saint-like and so meek!
Then the pent-up fount of feeling
Stirred its inmost deep—
Brimming o'er its frozen surface
From its guarded keep,
On my heart its drops descending,
And for one glad moment lending
Dreams of Joy's ecstatic blending,
Blessed my charmèd sleep.
Bright and brighter grew the vision
With each gathering tear,
Till the past was all before me
In its radiance clear;
And again we read at even—
Hoped, beneath the summer heaven,
Hopes that had no bitter leaven,
No disturbing fear.
All so real seemed each presence,
That one word I spoke—
Only one of old endearment
That dead silence broke.
But the angels who were keeping
Stillest watch while I was sleeping,
Left me o'er the embers weeping—
[Pg 123] Fled when I awoke.
But, as ivy clings the greenest
On abandoned walls;
And as echo lingers sweetest
In deserted halls:—
Thus, the sunlight that we borrow
From the past to gild our sorrow,
On the dark and dreaded morrow
Like a blessing falls.


Thomas Francis Marshall, the famous Kentucky orator and advocate, was born at Frankfort, Kentucky, June 7, 1801. He was the son of Dr. Louis Marshall, a brother of the great chief justice, and sometime president of Washington College (Washington and Lee University). "Tom" Marshall, to give him the name by which he was known throughout the South and West, was educated by private tutors, studied law under John J. Crittenden, and began the practice at Versailles, Kentucky. From 1832 to 1836 he was a member of the Kentucky legislature, and his speeches in that body, as well as in other places, brought him a great reputation as a brilliant and witty orator. The habit of drink was fastening itself upon him, however, and this retarded his progress in the world. Marshall was elected to Congress from the old Ashland district in 1840, and in that body he always bitterly opposed most measures proposed by Henry Clay, whom he afterwards eloquently eulogized. In 1841 his distinguished friend, Richard H. Menefee, the Kentucky orator, died, and Marshall delivered his celebrated eulogy upon him. This address, given before the Law Society of Transylvania University, was the greatest effort of his life. It has been pronounced the finest speech of its character[Pg 124] yet made in America. Marshall served in the Mexican War with no great degree of gallantry; and in 1850 he opposed the third Kentucky Constitution, then in the making, through a paper which he edited and called the Old Guard. "Tom" Marshall joined many temperance societies, and delivered many temperance speeches, but he always violated his pledge and returned to the old paths of drink. He was the great wit of his day and generation in Kentucky, if not, indeed, in the whole country. His stories are related to-day by persons who think them of recent origin. Marshall was counsel in many noted trials in the South and West, and his arguments to the jury were logical and eloquent. His speech in the famous Matt. Ward trial is, perhaps, his master effort before a jury. In 1856 Marshall removed to Chicago, but he shortly afterwards returned to Kentucky. In 1858-1859 he delivered lectures upon historical subjects in various cities of the United States. The Civil War failed to interest him at all, but he was broken in health at the time, and preparing himself for the long journey which was fast pressing upon him. "Tom" Marshall died near Versailles, Kentucky, September 22, 1864. To-day he sleeps amid a clump of trees in a Blue Grass meadow near the little town of his triumphs and of his failures—Versailles.

Bibliography. Speeches and Writings of Thomas F. Marshall, edited by W. L. Barre (Cincinnati, 1858); Thomas F. Marshall, by Charles Fennell (The Green Bag, Boston, July, 1907).


[From Speeches and Writings of Hon. Thomas F. Marshall, edited by W. L. Barre (Cincinnati, 1858)]

Mr. President, we of the "Total Abstinence and Vigilance Society," in our meetings at the other end of the city [Washington] are so much in the habit of "telling experiences," that I myself have somewhat fallen into it, and am guilty occasionally of the[Pg 125] egotism of making some small confessions (as small as I can possibly make them). Mine, then, sir, was a different case. I had earned a most unenviable notoriety by excesses which, though bad enough, did not half reach the reputation they won for me. I never was an habitual drunkard. I was one of your spreeing gentry. My sprees, however, began to crowd each other and my best friends feared that they would soon run together. Perhaps my long intervals of entire abstinence—perhaps something peculiar in my form, constitution, or complexion—may have prevented the physical indications, so usual, of that terrible disease, which, till temperance societies arose, was deemed incurable and resistless. Perhaps I had nourished the vanity to believe that nature had endowed me with a versatility which enabled me to throw down and take up at pleasure any pursuit, and I chose to sport with the gift. If so, I was brought to the very verge of a fearful punishment. Physicians tell us that intemperance at last becomes, of itself, not a habit voluntarily indulged, but a disease which its victim cannot resist. I had not become fully the subject of that fiendish thirst, that horrible yearning after the distillation "from the alembick of hell," which is said to scorch in the throat, and consume the vitals of the confirmed drunkard, with fires kindled for eternity. I did become alarmed, and for the first time, no matter from what cause, lest the demon's fangs were fastening upon me, and I was approaching that line which separates the man who frolics, and can quit, from the lost inebriate, whose appetite is disease, and whose will is dead. I joined the society on my own account, and felt that I must encounter the title of "reformed drunkard," annoying enough to me, I assure you. I judged, from the cruel publicity given through the press to my frolics, what I had to bear and brave. But I did brave it all; and I would have dared anything to break the chain which I at last discovered was riveting my soul, to unclasp the folds of that serpent-habit whose full embrace is death. Letters from people I never had heard of, newspaper paragraphs from Boston to New Orleans were mailed, and are still mailing to me, by which I am very distinctly, and in the most friendly and agreeable manner, apprised that I enjoyed all over the delectable reputation of a sot, with one foot in the grave, and understanding[Pg 126] almost totally overthrown. I doubt not, sir, that the societies who have invited me to address them at different places in the Union, will expect to find me with an unhealed carbuncle on my nose, and my body of the graceful and manly shape and proportion of a demijohn. I have dared all these annoyances, all this celebrity. I have not shrunk from being a text for temperance preachers, and a case for the outpouring of the sympathies of people who have more philanthropy than politeness, more temperance than taste. I signed the pledge on my own account, sir, and my heart leaped to find that I was free. The chain has fallen from my freeborn limbs; not a link or fragment remains to tell I ever wore the badge of servitude.


Jefferson J. Polk, an eccentric clergyman, physician, and writer, was born near Georgetown, Kentucky, March 10, 1802. He spent his young manhood as a printer on the Georgetown Patriot, and the Kentucky Gazette. In 1822 Polk joined the Lexington Temperance Society, and he continued steadfast in the cause until his death. He subsequently united with the Methodist church of Lexington, and married; but he continued to work as a journeyman-printer until 1826, when he removed to Danville, Kentucky, where he purchased and became editor of The Olive Branch, a weekly newspaper. This he conducted for several years, when he disposed of it in order to become an agent for the American Colonization Society. Polk held that emancipation with colonization in Liberia or elsewhere was the only proper and just solution of the slavery question. The awful Asiatic cholera reached Danville in 1833—as it did nearly a dozen other Kentucky towns—and Polk played his part in the battle which was waged against it. A short time later he became a Methodist circuit-rider, but, in 1839, he went to Lexington to[Pg 127] study medicine at Transylvania Medical School. In the following year Dr. Polk removed to Perryville, Kentucky, some miles from Danville, and this was his future home. Here he practiced medicine and preached the Gospel for the next twenty years. In 1860 he supported John Bell of Tennessee for president, but, when Lincoln was elected, he became a strong Union man. The battle of Perryville (October 8, 1862), the greatest battle ever fought upon Kentucky soil, was waged before the good doctor's very door. He converted his house into a hospital, and himself acted as surgeon of a field hospital. After the war he was postmaster of Perryville and claim agent for Union soldiers. At the age of sixty-five years, this eccentric old man published one of the literary curiosities of Kentucky literature, yet withal a work of real interest and much first-hand information. The little volume was entitled Autobiography of Dr. J. J. Polk, to which is added his occasional writings and biographies of worthy men and women of Boyle County, Kentucky (Louisville, 1867). From the frontispiece portrait the author looks fiercely out at the reader, a real son of thunder. Besides the autobiography of Dr. Polk the volume contains sketches of men, women, and places, fables, proverbs, sermons, woman's rights, a ghost story, "love powders," reflections of an old man, biographies of a group of the doctor's parishioners—all crowded into the 254 pages of this book. Dr. Polk died at Perryville, Kentucky, May 23, 1881.

Bibliography. The chief authority for the facts of Dr. Polk's life is, of course, his Autobiography; History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882).


[From Autobiography of Dr. J. J. Polk (Louisville, Kentucky, 1867)]

In the early settlement of Kentucky, when the Indians still roved through our dense forests, plundering and murdering the[Pg 128] white inhabitants, three men left Harrod's Station to search for their horses that had strayed off. They pursued their trail through the rich pea-vine and cane, that everywhere abounded, for many miles. Frequently on their route they saw signs that a party of Indians were in their vicinity, hence they took every step cautiously. Thus they traveled all day. Toward night they were many miles from home, but they continued their search until darkness and a cold rain that began to fall drove them to take shelter in an old deserted log cabin, thickly surrounded by cane and matted over with grape-vines. After they had gained this pleasant retreat they held a consultation, and agreed not to strike a fire, as the Indians, if any in the neighborhood, knew the location of the cabin, and, like themselves, might take shelter in it, and murder or expel the white intruders. Finally, the three now in possession, concluded to ascend into the loft of the cabin, the floor of which was clap-boards, resting upon round poles. In their novel position they lay down quietly side by side, each man holding his trusty rifle in his arms. Thus arranged, they awaited the results of the night.

They had not been in their perilous position long when six well-armed Indians entered the cabin, placed their guns and other implements of warfare in one corner of the house, struck a light, and began to make the usual demonstrations of joy on such occasions. One of our heroes wished to know the number of the Indians—he was the middle man of the three, and was lying on his back—and, as hilarity and mirth "grew thick and fast" among the Indians, he attempted to turn over and get a peep at things below. His comrades caught him on each side to keep him from turning over, and, in the struggle, one of the poles broke, and with a tremendous crash the clap-boards and the three men fell in the midst of the Indians, who with a loud yell of terror fled from the house, leaving their guns, and never returned.

The three men who had thus made a miraculous escape from the savage foe, remained all night in quiet possession of the cabin, and in the morning returned to the station with their trophies. Whenever the three heroes met in after life they laughed over their strange deliverance, and what they called "The Battle of the Boards."

[Pg 129]


George Dennison Prentice, poet, editor, wit, and founder of the Journal School of Female Poets, was born at Preston, Connecticut, December 18, 1802. In the fall of 1820 Prentice entered the Sophomore class of Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, where one of his instructors was Horace Mann, and among his classmates was Samuel G. Howe. At college he was famous for his prodigious memory. Prentice was graduated from Brown in 1823, after which he taught school for some time. He next turned to the law, but this he also abandoned to enter upon his life work—journalism. In 1827 he became editor of a paper in New London, Connecticut, but in the following year he went to Hartford to take charge of the New England Review, which "was the Louisville Journal, born in Connecticut." In 1830 the Connecticut Whigs requested Prentice to journey to Kentucky and prepare a campaign life of Henry Clay. He finally decided to do this, naming John Greenleaf Whittier, the good Quaker poet, as his successor in the editorial chair of The Review, and setting out at once upon his long pilgrimage to Lexington. He dashed off his biography of the statesman in a few months, and it greatly pleased the Whigs of his State, but Prentice had decided to remain in Kentucky. He went to Louisville, and on November 24, 1830, the first issue of the Louisville Journal appeared, and George D. Prentice had at last come into his very own. His pungent paragraphs made the "Yankee schoolmaster" feared by editors in the remotest corners of the country, but more especially by Shadrach Penn, editor of the Louisville Advertiser, the Democratic organ, as the Journal was the Whig organ. After a constant warfare of more than ten years, poor Penn capitulated, and removed to Missouri. Prentice found another[Pg 130] foe worthy of his steel in John H. Harney, editor of the Louisville Daily Democrat, but the battle of the wits between them was not as keen as it was between him and Penn. Prentice survived both editors and wrote exquisite eulogies upon them! He also had many personal encounters, which his biographer, Mr. John James Piatt, the Ohio poet, declines to dignify with the term of "duel." His pistol "brush" with Col Reuben T. Durrett, the Kentucky historical writer and collector, was, perhaps, his most serious affair. And the colonel lived to write a fine tribute to him, which was turning the tables upon him just a bit! Prentice's home in Louisville was the center of the city's literary life for many years. His wife was a charming and cultured woman, in every way fitted to assist him. A volume of his witty paragraphs, called by the publishers, Prenticeana (New York, 1859), attracted attention in London and Paris, and in all parts of the United States. Next to Whig politics, the Journal was the literary newspaper of the country. All Western and Southern poets were welcomed to its columns, particularly were female poets "featured," and upon them all Prentice poured out indiscriminate praise, which may or may not have been good for them or for the public. At any rate, he never failed to send a kindly letter to each new "discovery," in which their work already submitted was extravagantly valued, and in which they were urged to flood the office with more of the same kind. His praise of Amelia B. Welby, the sentimental singer of the long ago, seems indefensible to-day. As a poet himself Prentice was a master of blank verse forms. Mr. Piatt put him next to Bryant among American poets in the handling of this difficult measure. The Closing Year, written in 1835, is undoubtedly his finest poem; and At My Mother's Grave is usually set beside it. Although his sons, wife, and most of his friends sympathized with the South in the[Pg 131] war of Sections, Prentice was always an ardent advocate of the Union cause. He died near Louisville, on the banks of the Ohio river, January 22, 1870. Henry Watterson delivered an eulogy upon him, and snugly adjusted his mantle about his own shoulders.

Bibliography. The Poems of George D. Prentice, edited by John J. Piatt (Cincinnati, 1878); The Pioneer Press of Kentucky, by W. H. Perrin (Louisville, 1888).


[From The Poems of George D. Prentice, edited with a Biographical Sketch, by John J. Piatt (Cincinnati, 1878, 4th Edition)]

'Tis midnight's holy hour—and silence now
Is brooding, like a gentle spirit, o'er
The still and pulseless world. Hark! on the winds
The bell's deep notes are swelling. 'Tis the knell
Of the departed Year.
No funeral train
Is sweeping past; yet on the stream and wood,
With melancholy light, the moonbeams rest,
Like a pale, spotless shroud; the air is stirred,
As by a mourner's sigh; and on yon cloud,
That floats so still and placidly through heaven,
The spirits of the seasons seem to stand—
Young Spring, bright Summer, Autumn's solemn form,
And Winter with his aged locks—and breathe
In mournful cadences, that come abroad
Like the far wind-harp's wild and touching wail,
A melancholy dirge o'er the dead Year,
Gone from the earth forever.
'Tis a time
For memory and for tears. Within the deep,
Still chambers of the heart, a specter dim,
Whose tones are like the wizard voice of Time,
[Pg 132] Heard from the tomb of ages, points its cold
And solemn finger to the beautiful
And holy visions that have passed away
And left no shadow of their loveliness
On the dead waste of life. That specter lifts
The coffin-lid of hope, and joy, and love,
And, bending mournfully above the pale
Sweet forms that slumber there, scatters dead flowers
O'er what has passed to nothingness.
The Year
Has gone, and, with it, many a glorious throng
Of happy dreams. Its mark is on each brow,
Its shadow in each heart. In its swift course,
It waved its scepter o'er the beautiful,
And they are not. It laid its pallid hand
Upon the strong man, and the haughty form
Is fallen, and the flashing eye is dim.
It trod the hall of revelry, where thronged
The bright and joyous, and the tearful wail
Of stricken ones is heard, where erst the song
And reckless shout resounded. It passed o'er
The battle-plain, where sword and spear and shield
Flashed in the light of midday—and the strength
Of serried hosts is shivered, and the grass,
Green from the soil of carnage, waves above
The crushed and mouldering skeleton. It came
And faded like a wreath of mist at eve;
Yet, ere it melted in the viewless air,
It heralded its millions to their home
In the dim land of dreams.
Remorseless Time!—
Fierce spirit of the glass and scythe!—what power
Can stay him in his silent course, or melt
His iron heart to pity? On, still on
He presses, and forever. The proud bird,
The condor of the Andes, that can soar
[Pg 133] Through heaven's unfathomable depths, or brave
The fury of the northern hurricane
And bathe his plumage in the thunder's home,
Furls his broad wings at nightfall, and sinks down
To rest upon his mountain-crag—but Time
Knows not the weight of sleep or weariness,
And night's deep darkness has no chain to bind
His rushing pinion. Revolutions sweep
O'er earth, like troubled visions o'er the breast
Of dreaming sorrow; cities rise and sink,
Like bubbles on the water; fiery isles
Spring, blazing, from the ocean, and go back
To their mysterious caverns; mountains rear
To heaven their bald and blackened cliffs, and bow
Their tall heads to the plain; new empires rise,
Gathering the strength of hoary centuries,
And rush down like the Alpine avalanche,
Startling the nations; and the very stars,
Yon bright and burning blazonry of God,
Glitter awhile in their eternal depths,
And, like the Pleiad, loveliest of their train,
Shoot from their glorious spheres, and pass away,
To darkle in the trackless void: yet Time,
Time the tomb-builder, holds his fierce career,
Dark, stern, all-pitiless, and pauses not
Amid the mighty wrecks that strew his path,
To sit and muse, like other conquerors,
Upon the fearful ruin he has wrought.


[From the same]

It is the noon of night. On this calm spot,
Where passed my boyhood's years, I sit me down
To wander through the dim world of the Past.
The Past! the silent Past! pale Memory kneels
Beside her shadowy urn, and with a deep
And voiceless sorrow weeps above the grave
[Pg 134] Of beautiful affections. Her lone harp
Lies broken at her feet, and as the wind
Goes o'er its moldering chords, a dirge-like sound
Rises upon the air, and all again
Is an unbreathing silence.
Oh, the Past!
Its spirit as a mournful presence lives
In every ray that gilds those ancient spires,
And like a low and melancholy wind
Comes o'er yon distant wood, and faintly breathes
Upon my fevered spirit. Here I roved
Ere I had fancied aught of life beyond
The poet's twilight imaging. Those years
Come o'er me like the breath of fading flowers,
And tones I loved fall on my heart as dew
Upon the withered rose-leaf. They were years
When the rich sunlight blossomed in the air,
And fancy, like a blessed rainbow, spanned
The waves of Time, and joyous thoughts went off
Upon its beautiful unpillared arch
To revel there in cloud, and sun, and sky.
Within yon silent domes, how many hearts
Are beating high with glorious dreams. 'Tis well;
The rosy sunlight of the morn should not
Be darkened by the portents of the storm
That may not burst till eve. Those youthful ones
Whose thoughts are woven of the hues of heaven,
May see their visions fading tint by tint,
Till naught is left upon the darkened air
Save the gray winter cloud; the brilliant star
That glitters now upon their happy lives
May redden to a scorching flame and burn
Their every hope to dust; yet why should thoughts
Of coming sorrows cloud their hearts' bright depths
With an untimely shade? Dream on—dream on,
Ye thoughtless ones—dream on while yet ye may!
[Pg 135] When life is but a shadow, tear, and sigh,
Ye will turn back to linger round these hours
Like stricken pilgrims, and their music sweet
Will be a dear though melancholy tone
In Memory's ear, sounding forever more.


[From Prenticeana (New York, 1859)]

James Ray and John Parr have started a locofoco paper in Maine, called the Democrat. Parr, in all that pertains to decency, is below zero; and Ray is below Parr.

The editor of the —— speaks of his "lying curled up in bed these cold mornings." This verifies what we said of him some time ago—"he lies like a dog."

A young widow has established a pistol gallery in New Orleans. Her qualifications as a teacher of the art of duelling are of course undoubted; she has killed her man.

Wild rye and wild wheat grow in some regions spontaneously. We believe that wild oats are always sown.

"What would you do, madam, if you were a gentleman?" "Sir, what would you do if you were one?"

Whatever Midas touched was turned into gold; in these days, touch a man with gold and he'll turn into anything.


Robert Montgomery Bird, creator of Nick of the Woods, was born at Newcastle, Delaware, in 1803. He early abandoned the practice of medicine in Philadelphia in order to devote his entire attention to literature. His first works were three tragedies, entitled The Gladiator, Oraloosa, and The Broker of Bogota, the first of which was very popular on the stage. In 1834 Dr. Bird published his first novel, Calavar, a romance of Mexico that was highly praised by William H. Prescott. In the following year The Infidel, sequel to Calavar, appeared. The Hawks[Pg 136] of Hawk Hollow, and Sheppard Lee followed fast upon the heels of The Infidel. Then came Nick of the Woods, or the Jibbenainosay (Philadelphia, 1837, 2 vols.), the author's masterpiece. The background of this fine old romance was set against the Kentucky of 1782. Dr. Bird's Kentucky pioneers and Indians are drawn to the life, the silly sentimentalism of Cooper and Chateaubriand concerning the Indian character was avoided and indirectly proved untrue. Nick of the Woods was dramatized and produced upon the stage with great success. A collection of Dr. Bird's periodical papers was made, in 1838, and published under the title of Peter Pilgrim, or a Rambler's Recollections. This work included the first adequate description of Mammoth Cave, in Edmonson county, Kentucky. The author was one of the cave's earliest explorers, and his account of it heralded its wonders to the world in a manner that had never been done before. Just how long Dr. Bird remained in Kentucky is not known, as no comprehensive biography of him has been issued, but he must have been in this State for several years prior to the publication of Nick of the Woods, and Peter Pilgrim. His last novel was Robin Day (1839). After the publication of this tale, Dr. Bird became a Delaware farmer. In 1847 he returned to Philadelphia and became joint editor of the North American Gazette. He died at Philadelphia, January 22, 1854, of brain fever. Morton McMichael, with whom he was associated in conducting the Gazette, wrote an eloquent tribute to his memory. Dr. Bird's poem, The Beech Tree, is remembered today by many readers. But it is as the creator of Nick of the Woods, a new edition of which appeared in 1905, that his fame is firmly fixed.

Bibliography. The Prose Writers of America, by R. W. Griswold (Philadelphia, 1847); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. i).

[Pg 137]


[From Nick of the Woods (New York, 1853, revised edition)]

"What's the matter, Tom Bruce?" said the father, eyeing him with surprise.

"Matter enough," responded the young giant, with a grin of mingled awe and delight; "the Jibbenainosay is up again!"

"Whar?" cried the senior, eagerly,—"not in our limits?"

"No, by Jehosaphat!" replied Tom; "but nigh enough to be neighborly,—on the north bank of Kentuck, whar he has left his mark right in the middle of the road, as fresh as though it war but the work of the morning!"

"And a clear mark, Tom?—no mistake in it?"

"Right to an iota!" said the young man;—"a reggelar cross on the breast, and a good tomahawk dig right through the skull; and a long-legg'd fellow, too, that looked as though he might have fou't old Sattan himself!"

"It's the Jibbenainosay, sure enough; and so good luck to him!" cried the commander: "thar's a harricane coming!"

"Who is the Jibbenainosay?" demanded Forrester.

"Who?" cried Tom Bruce: "Why, Nick,—Nick of the Woods."

"And who, if you please, is Nick of the Woods?"

"Thar," replied the junior, with another grin, "thar, stranger, you're too hard for me. Some think one thing, and some another; but thar's many reckon he's the devil."

"And his mark, that you were talking of in such mysterious terms,—what is that?"

"Why, a dead Injun, to be sure, with Nick's mark on him,—a knife-cut, or a brace of 'em, over the ribs in the shape of a cross. That's the way the Jibbenainosay marks all the meat of his killing. It has been a whole year now since we h'ard of him."

"Captain," said the elder Bruce, "you don't seem to understand the affa'r altogether; but if you were to ask Tom about the Jibbenainosay till doomsday, he could tell you no more than he has told already. You must know, thar's a creatur' of some sort or other that ranges the woods round about our station h'yar, keeping a sort of guard over us like, and killing all the brute Injuns that ar' onlucky enough to come in his way, besides scalping[Pg 138] them and marking them with his mark. The Injuns call him Jibbenainosay, or a word of that natur', which them that know more about the Injun gabble that I do, say means the Spirit-that-walks; and if we can believe any such lying devils as Injuns (which I am loath to do, for the truth ar'nt in 'em), he is neither man nor beast, but a great ghost or devil that knife cannot harm nor bullet touch; and they have always had an idea that our fort h'yar in partickelar, and the country round about, war under his protection—many thanks to him, whether he be a devil or not; for that war the reason the savages so soon left off a worrying of us."

"Is it possible," said Roland, "that any one can believe such an absurd story?"

"Why not?" said Bruce, stoutly. "Thar's the Injuns themselves, Shawnees, Hurons, Delawares, and all,—but partickelarly the Shawnees, for he beats all creation a-killing of Shawnees,—that believe in him, and hold him in such eternal dread, that thar's scarce a brute of 'em has come within ten miles of the station h'yar this three y'ar: because as how, he haunts about our woods h'yar in partickelar, and kills 'em wheresomever he catches 'em,—especially the Shawnees, as I said afore, against which the creatur' has a most butchering spite; and there's them among the other tribes that call him Shawneewannaween, or the Howl of the Shawnees, because of his keeping them ever a howling. And thar's his marks, captain,—what do you make of that? When you find an Injun lying scalped and tomahawked, it stands to reason thar war something to kill him."

"Ay, truly," said Forrester; "but I think you have human beings enough to give the credit to, without referring it to a supernatural one."

"Strannger," said Big Tom Bruce the younger, with a sagacious nod, "when you kill an Injun yourself, I reckon,—meaning no offense—you will be willing to take all the honor that can come of it, without leaving it to be scrambled after by others. Thar's no man 'arns a scalp in Kentucky, without taking great pains to show it to his neighbors."

"And besides, captain," said the father, very gravely, "thar are men among us who have seen the creatur'!"

[Pg 139]

"That," said Roland, who perceived his new friends were not well pleased with his incredulity, "is an argument I can resist no longer."


John Alexander McClung, Kentucky's romantic historian and novelist, was born near the ancient town of Washington, Kentucky, September 25, 1804. He was educated at the Buck Pond Academy of his uncle, Dr. Louis Marshall, near Versailles, Kentucky. Having united with the Presbyterian church when he was sixteen years old, McClung entered Princeton Theological Seminary, in 1822, to fit himself for the ministry. He accepted his first pastorate in 1828, but, as his religious views were undergoing a profound change, he withdrew from the church and devoted himself to literature. His first work was a novel, called Camden (Philadelphia, 1830). This was a story of the South during the Revolutionary War. His Sketches of Western Adventure (Maysville, Kentucky, 1832), though almost as fictitious as Camden, came to be regarded as history, and it is upon this work that McClung's reputation rests. In a general way the Sketches are "of the most interesting incidents connected with the settlement of the West from 1755 to 1794." Many of them are most certainly figments of the author's imagination, yet they have come to be regarded as literal truth and history. His story of the women at Bryant's Station, who carried water for the defense of the fort while it was besieged by ambushed Indians under Simon Girty, in 1782, is his piece de resistance. John Filson, Alexander Fitzroy, Gilbert Imlay, Harry Toulmin, William Littell, Rafinesque, Marshall, and Butler, the Kentucky historians that published their works prior to McClung's, are silent concerning the tripping of the women to the[Pg 140] spring for water while the Indians lay upon the banks of Elkhorn with rifles cocked and ready. All Indians have been scalp-hunters, regardless of whatever else they have been, and a woman's scalp dangling from their sticks afforded them as much pleasure as a man's. When the Collinses, both father and son, reached this romance they merely reproduced it "as interesting," allowing it to pass without further comment of any kind. McClung blended romance and history as charmingly as did Judge James Hall, of Cincinnati, whom Mann Butler took to task. The climax of this tale came in the erection of a memorial wall encircling a spring which sprang out of the ground some years prior to the Civil War! McClung began the practice of law in 1835, but in 1849 he returned to the ministry. He subsequently held pastorates at Cincinnati and Indianapolis, but finally settled at Maysville, Kentucky. He declined the presidency of Hanover College, Indiana, in 1856. On August 16, 1859, McClung was drowned in the Niagara river, his body being carried over the falls, but it was later recovered and returned to Kentucky for interment.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by Z. F. Smith (Louisville, Kentucky, 1892); Kentucky in the Nation's History, by R. M. McElroy (New York, 1909).


[From Sketches of Western Adventure (Cincinnati, 1838)]

All ran hastily to the picketing, and beheld a small party of Indians, exposed to open view, firing, yelling, and making the most furious gestures. The appearance was so singular, and so different from their usual manner of fighting, that some of the more wary and experienced of the garrison instantly pronounced it a decoy party, and restrained the young men from sallying out and attacking them, as some of them were strongly disposed to do. The opposite side of the fort was instantly manned, and several breaches in the picketing rapidly repaired. Their greatest[Pg 141] distress arose from the prospect of suffering for water. The more experienced of the garrison felt satisfied that a powerful party was in ambuscade near the spring, but at the same time they supposed that the Indians would not unmask themselves, until the firing upon the opposite side of the fort was returned with such warmth, as to induce the belief that the feint had succeeded.

Acting upon this impression, and yielding to the urgent necessity of the case, they summoned all the women, without exception, and explaining to them the circumstances in which they were placed, and the improbability that any injury would be offered them, until the firing had been returned from the opposite side of the fort, they urged them to go in a body to the spring, and each bring up a bucket full of water. Some of the ladies, as was natural, had no relish for the undertaking, and asked why the men could not bring water as well as themselves, observing that they were not bullet-proof, and that the Indians made no distinction between male and female scalps!

To this it was answered, that women were in the habit of bringing water every morning to the fort, and that if the Indians saw them engaged as usual, it would induce them to believe that their ambuscade was undiscovered, and that they would not unmask themselves for the sake of firing at a few women, when they hoped, by remaining concealed a few moments longer, to obtain complete possession of the fort. That if men should go down to the spring, the Indians would immediately suspect that something was wrong, would despair of succeeding by ambuscade, and would instantly rush upon them, follow them into the fort, or shoot them down at the spring. The decision was soon over.

A few of the boldest declared their readiness to brave the danger, and the younger and more timid rallying in the rear of these veterans, they all marched down in a body to the spring, within point blank shot of more than five hundred Indian warriors! Some of the girls could not help betraying symptoms of terror, but the married women, in general, moved with a steadiness and composure, which completely deceived the Indians. Not a shot was fired. The party were permitted to fill their buckets, one after another, without interruption, and although their steps became[Pg 142] quicker and quicker, on their return, and when near the gate of the fort, degenerated into a rather unmilitary celerity, attended with some little crowding in passing the gate, yet not more than one-fifth of the water was spilled, and the eyes of the youngest had not dilated to more than double their ordinary size.


James Ohio Pattie, an early Western traveler, was born near Brooksville, Kentucky, in 1804. His father, Sylvester Pattie (1782-1828), emigrated to Missouri in 1812, and settled at St. Charles. He served in the War of 1812, at the conclusion of which he built a saw-mill on the Gasconade river, sending down pine lumber in rafts to St. Louis. Several years later his wife died, leaving nine young children, of whom James O. Pattie was the eldest. In 1824 Sylvester Pattie became dissatisfied with his lumber business and decided to dispose of it and undertake an expedition into New Mexico, which was one of the first from this country into that territory. The route pursued by his party was quite new. James O. Pattie was at school, but he prevailed upon his father to permit him to accompany the expedition. It remained for him to write a most interesting account of their remarkable journey, in which Indians who had never seen white men before were encountered, his own capture described, together with the sufferings and death of his father in New Mexico. On his return to the United States Pattie passed through Cincinnati, where he met Timothy Flint, one of the pioneers of Western letters, who edited his journal under the title of The Personal Narrative of James O. Pattie, of Kentucky, during an Expedition from St. Louis, through the Vast Regions between that Place and the Pacific Ocean, and thence Back through the City of Mexico to Vera Cruz, during Journeyings of Six Years; in which[Pg 143] he and his Father, who accompanied him, suffered Unheard of Hardships and Dangers, and Various Conflicts with the Indians, and were made Captives, in which Captivity his Father Died; together with a description of the Country and the Various Nations through which they Passed (Cincinnati, 1831). "One sees in [Pattie's] pages the beginnings of the drama to be fought out in the Mexican War." The date and place of his death are unknown.

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. iv); Pattie's Narrative has been carefully re-edited with notes and introduction by Reuben Gold Thwaites, and published in his famous Early Western Travels Series (Cleveland, 1905, v. xviii).


[From The Personal Narrative of James O. Pattie, of Kentucky (Cincinnati, 1831)]

We set off for Santa Fe on the 1st of November [1824]. Our course for the first day led us over broken ground. We passed the night in a small town, called Callacia, built on a small stream, that empties into the del Norte. The country around this place presents but a small portion of level surface.

The next day our path lay over a point of the mountain. We were the whole day crossing. We killed a grey bear, that was exceedingly fat. It had fattened on a nut of the shape and size of a bean, which grows on a tree resembling the pine, called by the Spanish, pinion. We took a great part of the meat with us. We passed the night again in a town called Albukerque.

The following day we passed St. Thomas, a town situated on the bank of the del Norte, which is here a deep and muddy stream, with bottoms from five to six miles wide on both sides. These bottoms sustain numerous herds of cattle. The small huts of the shepherds, who attend to them, were visible here and there. We reached another town called Elgidonis, and stopped for the night. We kept guard around our horses all night, but in the morning four of our mules were gone. We hunted for them until ten o'clock, when two Spaniards came, and asked us what[Pg 144] we would give them if they would find our mules? We told them to bring the mules, and we would pay them a dollar. They set off, two of our men following them without their knowledge and went into a thicket, where they had tied the mules, and returned with them to us. As may be supposed, we gave them both a good whipping. It seemed at first that the whole town would rise against us in consequence. But when we related the circumstances fairly to the people, the officer corresponding to our justice of the peace, said, we had done perfectly right, and had the men put in the stocks.

We recommenced our journey, and passed a mission of Indians under the control of an old priest. After crossing a point of the mountain, we reached Santa Fe, on the 5th. This town contains between four and five thousand inhabitants. It is situated on a large plain. A handsome stream runs through it, adding life and beauty to a scene striking and agreeable from the union of amenity and cultivation around, with the distant view of the snow clad mountains. It is pleasant to walk on the flat roofs of the houses in the evening, and look on the town and plain spread below. The houses are low, with flat roofs as I have mentioned. The churches are differently constructed from the other buildings and make a beautiful show. They have a great number of large bells, which, when disturbed, make a noise, that would almost seem sufficient to awaken the dead.

We asked the governor for permission to trap beaver in the river Helay. His reply was that, he did not know if he was allowed by the law to do so; but if upon examination it lay in his power, he would inform us on the morrow, if we would come to his office at 9 o'clock in the morning. According to this request, we went to the place appointed, the succeeding day, which was the 9th of November. We were told by the governor, that he had found nothing that would justify him in giving us the legal permission we desired. We then proposed to him to give us liberty to trap upon the conditions that we paid him five per cent on the beaver we might catch. He said he would consider this proposition, and give us an answer the next day at the same hour. The thoughts of our hearts were not at all favorable to this person, as we left him.

[Pg 145]


William F. Marvin, "the latter-day drunken poet of Danville," was born at Leicestershire, England, in 1804. He emigrated to America when a young man, and made his home in the little town of Danville, Kentucky. Marvin was a shoemaker by trade, but verse-making and bacchanalian nights were his heart's delight and perfect pleasures. He was a well-known character in Danville and the surrounding country, and many are the old wives' tales they tell on the old poet to this day. On one occasion, while in his cups, of course, he attempted suicide, using his shoe knife on his throat, but he was finally persuaded that a shoe knife could be put to far better purposes. Marvin served in the Mexican War, and on his return home, he published his first and only book of verse, The Battle of Monterey and Other Poems (Danville, Kentucky, 1851). The title-poem, The Battle of Monterey, is a rather lengthy metrical romance of some forty or more pages; but the "other poems," called also "miscellaneous poems," extend the book to its 219 pages. A few of these are worthy of preservation, especially the shorter lyrics. Marvin's book is now extremely rare. The writer has located not more than six copies, though a large edition was printed by the poet's publisher, Captain A. S. McGrorty, who is still in the land of the living. During the closing years of his life Marvin contributed occasional poems to the old Kentucky Advocate, the Danville newspaper, his last poem having appeared in that paper, called The Beauty, Breadth, and Depth of Love. William F. Marvin died at Danville, Kentucky, July 12, 1879, and was buried in the cemetery of the town. To-day his grave may be identified, but it is unmarked by a monument. His verse certainly shows decided improvement over the rhymes of Thomas Johnson, but both of them were imperfect[Pg 146] forerunners of that celebrated poet and distinguished soldier, who was born at Danville about the time Marvin reached there and set up his shop on Main street—Theodore O'Hara, the highest poetic note in the literature of old Kentucky.

Bibliography. The Kentucky Advocate (Danville, July 14, 1879); letters from G. W. Doneghy, the Danville poet of to-day, author of The Old Hanging Fork, and Other Poems (Franklin, Ohio, 1897), to the writer.


[From The Battle of Monterey and Other Poems (Danville, Kentucky, 1851)]

A bee, while hovering round a lip,
Where wit and beauty hung,
Mistook its bloom, and flew to sip,
But ah, the bee got stung.


[From the same]

Ye are come my sad heart to beguile,
In the blush of your beautiful hue;
The fairest and welcomest flowers that smile,
Within the wide arch of the blue.
From Araby odors ye bring,
And ye steal the warm tints from the sky,
And scatter your pearly bright beauties in spring,
As if nature ne'er meant you to die.
The soft crimson blush of each lip,
'Mong the green leaves and buds that abound
Seems pouting in richness, and parted to sip
The dew that is falling around.
Ye bow to the breath of the Morn,
And cover his wings with perfume;
And woo the gay bee in the earliest dawn,
[Pg 147] To rest on your bosoms of bloom.
Ye have brought back the passion of love,
For a moment to warm my lone breast,
And pointed to undying roses above,
That smile through eternity's rest.


[From the same]

AirHere's a health to One I love dear.

Here's a bumper brimful for our friends,
And a frown and a fig for our foes;
And may he who stoops meanly to gain his own ends,
Never know the sweets of repose.
Though folly and ignorance join,
To blight the young buds of our fame,
Their slander a moment may injure the vine,
But its fruits will be blushing the same.
Then here is a bumper to truth,
May its banners wave wide as the world,
And a fig for the mortal in age or in youth
Who has not its banner unfurl'd.


Dr. Elisha Bartlett, physician, poet, and politician, was born at Smithfield, Rhode Island, in 1805. He was graduated in medicine from Brown University in 1826, and later practiced at Lowell, Massachusetts, of which city he was the first mayor. Dr. Bartlett lectured at Dartmouth College in 1839; and two years later he became professor of the Theory and Practice of Medicine in the medical school of Transylvania University, Lexington, Kentucky. He left Transylvania in 1844, for the University of Maryland, but he returned to Lexington two years later, occupying[Pg 148] his former chair in the medical school. In 1849 Dr. Bartlett left Transylvania and went to Louisville, where he delivered medical lectures for a year. From 1851 until his death he was professor of materia medica and medical jurisprudence in the College of Physicians and Surgeons of New York City. Dr. Bartlett died at his birthplace, Smithfield, Rhode Island, July 18, 1855, one of the most widely known of American physicians, and also well known and highly regarded by medical men in Europe. His medical works are: Essay on the Philosophy of Medical Science (Philadelphia, 1844); Inquiry into the Degree of Certainty in Medicine (1848); A Discourse on the Life and Labours of Dr. Wells, the Discoverer of the Philosophy of Dew (1849); The Fevers of the United States (1850); Discourse on the Times, Character, and Works of Hippocrates (1852). These are his medical works, but it is upon his small volume of poems, Simple Settings, in Verse, for Six Portraits and Pictures, from Mr. Dickens's Gallery (Boston, 1855), that he is entitled to his place in this work. Of this little book of but eighty pages, his friend, Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes, wrote: "Yet few suspected him of giving utterance in rhythmical shape to his thoughts or feelings. It was only when his failing limbs could bear him no longer, as conscious existence slowly retreated from his palsied nerves, that he revealed himself freely in truest and tenderest form of expression. We knew he was dying by slow degrees, and we heard from him from time to time, or saw him always serene and always hopeful while hope could have a place in his earthly future.... When to the friends he loved there came, as a farewell gift, ... a little book with a few songs in it—songs with his whole warm heart in them—they knew that his hour was come, and their tears fell fast as they read the loving thoughts that he had clothed in words of beauty and melody. Among the memorials of[Pg 149] departed friendships, we treasure the little book of 'songs' ... his last present, as it was his last production."

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i); History of the Medical Department of Transylvania University, by Dr. Robert Peter (Louisville, Kentucky, 1905).


[From Simple Settings, in Verse, for Six Portraits and Pictures, from Mr. Dickens's Gallery (Boston, 1854)]

'Twas worth a crown, John Browdie, to hear you ringing out,
O'er hedge and hill and roadside, that loud, hilarious shout;
And how the echoes caught it up and flung it all about.
'Twas worth another, John, to see that broad and glorious grin,
That stretched your wide mouth wider still, and wrinkled round your chin.
And showed how true the heart was that glowed and beat within.
Yes! Nick has beaten the measther,—'twas a sight beneath the sun!
And I only wish, John Browdie, when that good deed was done,
That you and I had both been there to help along the fun.
Be sure he let him have it well;—his trusty arm was nerved
With hoarded wrongs and righteous hate,—so it slackened not nor swerved,
Until the old curmudgeon got the thrashing he deserved.
The guinea, John, you gave the lad, is charmed forevermore;
It shall fill your home with blessings; it shall add unto your store;
Be light upon your pathway, and sunshine on your floor.
These are the treasures, too, laid up forever in the sky,
Kind words to solace aching hearts, and make wet eyelids dry,
[Pg 150] And kindly deeds in silence done with no one standing by.
And when you tell the story, John, to her, your joy and pride—
The miller's bonny daughter, so soon to be your bride—
She shall love you more than ever, and cling closer to your side.
Content and health be in your house! and may you live to see
Full many a little Browdie, John, climb up your sturdy knee;
The mother's hope, the father's stay and comfort long to be.
These are thy crown, O England; thy glory, grace, and might!—
Who work the work of honest hands, from early morn till night,
And worship God by serving man, and doing what is right.
All honor, then, to them! let dukes and duchesses give room!
The men who by the anvil strike, and ply the busy loom;
And scatter plenty through the land, and make the desert bloom.


Dr. Samuel David Gross, the distinguished American surgeon and author, was born near Easton, Pennsylvania, July 8, 1805. He was graduated from the Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia, in the class of 1828, and he at once entered upon the active practice of his profession in Philadelphia. In 1833 Dr. Gross accepted a professorship in the Ohio Medical College of Cincinnati, which position he held until 1840, when he became professor of surgery in the University of Louisville. The subsequent sixteen years of Dr. Gross's life were spent upon Kentucky soil. His Report on Kentucky Surgery (Louisville, 1851) contained the first biography of Dr. Ephraim McDowell, the Kentucky surgeon, who performed the first operation for the removal of the ovaries done in the world. That Dr. McDowell had actually accomplished this wonderful feat at Danville, in 1809, was Dr. Gross's contention, and that he was able to prove it beyond all doubt, and place the[Pg 151] Danville doctor before the world as the father of ovariotomy, proves the power of his paper. Dr. Gross was the founder of the Louisville Medical Review, but he had conducted it but a short time when he accepted the chair of surgery in the Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia. This position he occupied until about two years prior to his death. Dr. Gross enjoyed an international reputation as a surgeon. Oxford and Cambridge conferred degrees upon him in recognition of his distinguished contributions to medical science. As an original demonstrator he was well known. He was among the first to urge the claims of preventive medicine; and his demonstrations upon rabbits, with a view to throwing additional light on manual strangulation, are familiar to students of medicine and medical history. His works include: Elements of Pathological Anatomy (1839); Foreign Bodies in the Air-Passages (1854); Report on the Causes which Retard the Progress of American Medical Literature (1856); System of Surgery (1859); Manual of Military Surgery (1861), Japanese translation (Tokio, 1874); and his best known work of a literary value, John Hunter and His Pupils (1881). In 1875 he published two lectures, entitled The History of American Medical Literature; and, in the following year, with several other writers, he issued A Century of American Medicine. Dr. Gross was always greatly interested in the history of medicine and surgery. He died at Philadelphia, May 6, 1884.

Bibliography. His Autobiography (Philadelphia, 1887, two vols.), was edited by his sons, one of whom, A. Haller Gross, was born in Kentucky; Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. iii).


[From Autobiography of Samuel D. Gross, M. D. (Philadelphia, 1887, v. i.)]

It was pleasant to dwell in the land of Boone, of Clay, and of Crittenden; to behold its fertile fields, its majestic forests, and its[Pg 152] beautiful streams; and to associate with its refined, cultivated, generous-hearted, and chivalric people. It was there that I had hoped to spend the remainder of my days upon objects calculated to promote the honor and welfare of its noble profession, and finally to mingle my dust with the dust and ashes of the sons and daughters of Kentucky. But destiny has decreed otherwise. A change has come over my life. I stand this evening in the presence of a new people, a stranger in a strange place, and a candidate for new favors.


[From the same]

The admirers of Mr. Clay cannot but regret the motives which induced him to spend his last days at Washington. It was a pitiful ambition which prompted him to forsake his family and his old friends to die at the capital of the country in order that he might have the éclat of a public funeral. Broken down in health and spirits when he left his old home, unable to travel except by slow stages, he knew perfectly well that his days were numbered, and that he could never again see Kentucky. How much more dignified would it have been if he had breathed out his once precious life in the bosom of his family and in the arms of the woman who for upwards of half a century had watched over his interests, reared his children with a fond mother's care, loved him with a true woman's love, and followed him, wherever he was, with her prayers and her blessings!


Dr. Thomas Holley Chivers, the eccentric Southern poet, and maker of most unusual verse forms, was born near Washington, Georgia, December 12, 1807. He was instructed in the classics by his mother, and, choosing medicine as his vocation, he went to Lexington, Kentucky—most probably making the long journey on horse-back—and entered the medical school of Transylvania University.[Pg 153] Chivers matriculated in November, 1828, and took up his abode at the old Phœnix Hotel, as his father was wealthy and liberal with him. He took one ticket and made it during his first year. The college records show that he returned for the fall session of 1829, and that, during his second year, he took two tickets, graduating on March 17, 1830. The thesis he submitted for his degree of Doctor of Medicine was Remittent and Intermittent Bilious Fever. Kentucky was the birthplace of the first poems Chivers wrote, and, very probably, the birthplace of his first book, Conrad and Eudora, or The Death of Alonzo (Philadelphia, 1834). This little drama, intended for the study, was set in Kentucky, and founded upon the Beauchamp-Sharp murder of 1825, which was still the chief topic of conversation in the State when the poet reached Lexington in 1828. Chivers's second book of poems, called Nacoochee (New York, 1837), contained two poems written while a student of Transylvania, entitled To a China Tree, and Georgia Waters. A short time after the publication of this book Chivers and Edgar Allan Poe became acquainted; and the remainder of their lives they were denouncing and fighting each other. It all came about by Chivers claiming his Allegra Florence in Heaven, published in The Lost Pleiad (New York, 1845), as the original of The Raven. Of course, the world and the critics have smiled at this claim and let it pass. After Poe's death Chivers claimed practically everything the Virginian did to be a plagiarism of some of his own poems. His most famous work was Eonchs of Ruby (New York, 1851). This was followed by Virginalia (Philadelphia, 1853); Memoralia (Philadelphia, 1853); Atlanta (Macon, Ga., 1853); Birth-Day Song of Liberty (Atlanta, Ga., 1856); and The Sons of Usna (Philadelphia, 1858). Bayard Taylor, in his famous Echo Club, mentioned Facets of Diamond as one of the poet's publications,[Pg 154] but a copy of it has not yet been unearthed. Dr. Chivers died at Decatur, Georgia, December 19, 1858. No more pathetic figure has appeared in American letters than Chivers. Had he been content to write his poetry independently of Poe or any one else, he would have left his name clearer. He was a wonderful manipulator of verse-forms, but he was not what Poe was—a world-genius.

Bibliography. In the Poe Circle, by Joel Benton (New York, 1899); The Poe-Chivers Papers, by G. E. Woodberry (Century Magazine, Jan., Feb., 1903); Representative Southern Poets, by C. W. Hubner (New York, 1906); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, Georgia, 1909, v. ii).


[From Conrad and Eudora (Philadelphia, 1834)]

Act III. Scene IV. Frankfort. Time, midnight. Conrad enters from the tavern, walks the street, dressed in dark clothes, with a masque on his face, and, with difficulty, finds Alonzo's house.

Conrad.   This is the place,—and I must change my name.
(Goes to the door and knocks. Puts his hand in his bosom.
A female voice is heard within—the wife of Alonzo.)
Angeline.   I would not venture out this time o' night.

(Conrad knocks.)

Alonzo.   Who's there?
Conrad.   A friend.
Angeline   (within). I would not venture out, my love!
Alonzo.   Why, Angeline!—thy fears are woman's, love.

(Knocks again.)

Alonzo.   Who is that?—speak out!
Conrad.   Darby—'tis thy friend!
He has some business with thee—'tis of weight!
Has sign'd a bond, and thou must seal the deed!
Alonzo.   What does he say?
Angeline.   Indeed I do not know—you'd better see.
[Pg 155](Knocks again and looks round.)
Alonzo.   Who can this be—so late at night?

(Opens the door and steps back.)

Conrad.   Behold!

(Throws off his masque and takes him by the throat.)

Look in my face, and call my name!
Alonzo.   Conrad!—Conrad! do not kill me, have mercy!
Conrad.   Where is my wife? Now, villain! die!—die!—die!

(Stabs him.)

Now, pray! if thou canst pray, now pray—now die!
Now, drink the wormwood which Eudora drank.

(Stamps him. Alonzo dies.)

(Conrad rushes out and is seen no more. Angeline, Alonzo's
wife, runs in the room, screams, and falls upon his breast.)
Angeline.   'Tis he—'tis he—Conrad has kill'd Alonzo!
Oh! my husband! my husband! thou art dead!
'Tis he—'tis he—the wretch has kill'd Alonzo!
(The doctor, Alonzo's brother, rushes in, crying "Murder!—murder!"
Watchmen and citizens rush in, crying
"Murder! murder! Alonzo's dead! Alonzo's dead!")
Citizens.   Who, under God's heaven, could have done this deed?
Angeline.   'Tis he—'tis he! Conrad has kill'd Alonzo!
Watchmen.  Who did it? Speak! speak! Conrad kill'd Alonzo?
Angeline.   Conrad—'twas Conrad, kill'd my husband! Dead!
Oh! death—death—death! What will become of me?
Doctor.   Did you see his face? My God! I know 'twas he!
Angeline.   I saw his face—I heard his voice—he's gone!
(Angeline   feels his pulse, while the rest look round.)
Oh! my husband!—my husband!—death, death!
Speak, Alonzo! speak to Angeline—death!
Oh! speak one word, and tell me who it was!

(Kisses him.)

No pulse—my husband's dead! He's gone!—he's gone!
(Faints away on his breast. The watchmen and citizens take her
into an adjoining room, bearing her husband with her—asking,
"Who could have kill'd him? Speak, Angeline—speak!")
Curtain falls. End of Act III.

[Pg 156]


[From Nacoochee (New York, 1837)]

On thy waters, thy sweet valley waters,
Oh! Georgia! how happy were we!
When thy daughters, thy sweet-smiling daughters,
Once gathered sweet-william for me.
Oh! thy wildwood, thy dark shady wildwood
Had many bright visions for me;
For my childhood, my bright rosy childhood
Was cradled, dear Georgia! in thee!
On thy mountains, thy green purple mountains,
The seasons are waiting on thee;
And thy fountains, thy clear crystal fountains
Are making sweet music for me.
Oh! thy waters, thy sweet valley waters
Are dearer than any to me;
For thy daughters, thy sweet-smiling daughters,
Oh! Georgia! give beauty to thee.

Transylvania University, 1830.


Jefferson Davis, the first and only president of the Confederacy, was born in Christian, now Todd, county, Kentucky, June 3, 1808. During his infancy his family removed first to Louisiana and afterwards to Mississippi, locating near the village of Woodville. When but seven years old he was mounted on a pony and, with a company of travelers, rode back to Kentucky. He entered St. Thomas College, a Roman Catholic institution, near Springfield, Kentucky. This tiny, obscure "college" was presided over by Dominicans, and Davis was the only Protestant boy in it. He spent two years at St. Thomas, when he returned home to be fitted for college.[Pg 157] In October, 1821, when in his fourteenth year, Jefferson Davis arrived in Lexington, Kentucky, and matriculated in the academic department of Transylvania University. Horace Holley, surrounded with his famous faculty, was in charge of the University during Davis's student days. His favorite professor was Robert H. Bishop, afterwards president of Miami University, Oxford, Ohio; and his fellow students included David Rice Atchison, George Wallace Jones, Gustavus A. Henry, and Belvard J. Peters, all subsequently in Congress or on the bench. When Davis was in the United States Senate he found five other Transylvania men in the same body. He made his home with old Joseph Ficklin, the Lexington postmaster, and three of the happiest years of his life were spent in the "Athens of the West." He left Transylvania at the end of his junior year in order to enter West Point, from which he was graduated in 1828. As Lieutenant Davis he was in Kentucky during the cholera-year of 1833, and he did all in his power to bury the dead and watch the dying. Near Louisville, on June 17, 1835, Davis was married to Miss Sarah Knox Taylor, second daughter of President Taylor, but within the year the fair young girl died. Davis was in the lower House of Congress, in 1845, as a Democrat; but in the following year he enlisted for service in the Mexican War, through which he served with great credit to himself and to his country. From 1847 to 1851 he was United States Senator from Mississippi; and from 1853 to 1857 he was Secretary of War in President Pierce's cabinet. Davis was immediately returned to the Senate, where he continued until January 21, 1861, when he bade the Senators farewell in a speech that has made him famous as an orator. Four weeks later he was inaugurated as provisional president of the Confederate States. On February 22, 1862, he was elected permanent president, and settled himself in the capitol at Richmond,[Pg 158] Virginia. President Davis was arrested near Irwinville, Georgia, May 10, 1865, and for the next two years he was a prisoner in Fortress Monroe. He died at New Orleans, December 6, 1889, but in 1893 his body was removed to Richmond. As an author Davis's fame must rest on his The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government (New York, 1881, two vols.).

Bibliography. Jefferson Davis: A Memoir by his wife, Mrs. V. Jefferson Davis (New York 1890, two vols.); Belford's Magazine (Jan., 1890); Southern Statesmen of the Old Regime, by W. P. Trent (New York, 1897); Jefferson Davis, by W. E. Dodd (Philadelphia, 1907); Statesmen of the Old South, by W. E. Dodd (New York, 1911). Prof. W. L. Fleming, of Louisiana State University is now preparing what will be the most comprehensive and, perhaps, the definitive biography of Davis.


[From The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government (New York, 1881, v. i.)]

It has been a conviction of pressing necessity, it has been a belief that we are to be deprived in the Union of the rights which our fathers bequeathed to us, which has brought Mississippi to her present decision. She has heard proclaimed the theory that all men are created free and equal, and this made the basis of an attack upon her social institutions; and the sacred Declaration of Independence has been invoked to maintain the position of the equality of the races. That Declaration of Independence is to be construed by the circumstances and purposes for which it was made. The communities were declaring their independence; the people of those communities were asserting that no man was born—to use the language of Mr. Jefferson—booted and spurred, to ride over the rest of mankind; that men were created equal—meaning the men of the political community; that there was no divine right to rule; that no man inherited the right to govern; that there were no classes by which power and place descended to families; but that all stations were equally within the[Pg 159] grasp of each member of the body politic. These were the great principles they announced; these were the purposes for which they made their declaration; these were the ends to which their enunciation was directed. They have no reference to the slave; else, how happened it that among the items of arraignment against George III was that he endeavored to do just what the North has been endeavoring of late to do—to stir up insurrection among our slaves? Had the Declaration announced that the negroes were free and equal, how was the Prince to be arraigned for raising up insurrection among them? And how was this to be enumerated among the high crimes which caused the colonies to sever their connection with the mother country? When our Constitution was formed, the same idea was rendered more palpable; for there we find provision made for that very class of persons as property; they were not put upon the footing of equality with white men—not even upon that of paupers and convicts; but, so far as representation was concerned, were discriminated against as a lower caste, only to be represented in the numerical proportion of three fifths.

Then, Senators, we recur to the compact which binds us together; we recur to the principles upon which our Government was founded; and when you deny them, and when you deny to us the right to withdraw from a Government which, thus perverted, threatens to be destructive of our rights, we but tread in the path of our fathers when we proclaim our independence and take the hazard. This is done, not in hostility to others, not to injure any section of the country, not even for our own pecuniary benefit; but from the high and solemn motive of defending and protecting the rights we inherited, and which it is our sacred duty to transmit unshorn to our children.

I find in myself, perhaps, a type of the general feeling of my constituents towards yours. I am sure I feel no hostility towards you, Senators from the North. I am sure there is not one of you, whatever sharp discussion there may have been between us, to whom I cannot now say, in the presence of my God, I wish you well; and such, I am sure, is the feeling of the people whom I represent towards those whom you represent. I, therefore, feel that I but express their desire when I say I hope, and they hope,[Pg 160] for peaceable relations with you, though we must part. They may be mutually beneficial to us in the future, as they have been in the past, if you so will it. The reverse may bring disaster on every portion of the country; and, if you will have it thus, we will invoke the God of our fathers, who delivered them from the power of the lion, to protect us from the ravages of the bear; and thus, putting our trust in God and in our own firm hearts and strong arms, we will vindicate the right as best we may.

In the course of my service here, associated at different times with a great variety of Senators, I see now around me some with whom I have served long; there have been points of collision; but, whatever of offense there has been to me, I leave here. I carry with me no hostile remembrance. Whatever offense I have given which has not been redressed, or for which satisfaction has not been demanded, I have, Senators, in this hour of our parting, to offer you my apology for any pain which, in heat of discussion, I have inflicted. I go hence unencumbered of the remembrance of any injury received, and having discharged the duty of making the only reparation in my power for any injury offered.

Mr. President and Senators, having made the announcement which the occasion seemed to me to require, it only remains for me to bid you a final adieu.


William Davis Gallagher, poet and critic, was born at Philadelphia, August 21, 1808. When he was but eight years old he removed to Cincinnati with his mother, a widow. In 1821 he was apprenticed to a Cincinnati printer. At the age of twenty years Gallagher journeyed through Kentucky and Mississippi, and his letters concerning the country and the people won him his first fame as a writer. In 1831 he became editor of the Cincinnati Mirrow, the fifth or sixth literary journal published in the West. Three years later Thomas H. Shreve joined Gallagher[Pg 161] in editing the paper. Like all Western magazines, the Mirrow's high hopes were utterly dashed upon the old rocks of failure from one cause or another. In 1835 Gallagher published Erato No. I., and Erato No. II., which were two small pamphlets of poems. Erato No. III. was published at Louisville, two years later. The chief poem in this was upon a Kentucky subject. Gallagher's anthology of Western verse, without biographical or critical notes, entitled The Poetical Literature of the West (Cincinnati, 1841), the first work in that field, was well done, and it strengthened his claim as a critic. In 1854 he became one of the editors of the Louisville Courier; but he shortly afterwards purchased a farm near Pewee Valley, Kentucky, some twelve miles from Louisville, and as a Kentucky farmer he spent the final forty years of his life. He took keen interest in agricultural pursuits, but he made nothing more than a meager living out of his farm. His essay on Fruit Culture in the Ohio Valley attracted the attention of persons interested in that subject. As a poet Gallagher submits his claim upon a rather long pastoral poem, entitled Miami Woods. This work was begun in 1839, and finished seventeen years later. This gives the title of his book of poems, Miami Woods, A Golden Wedding, and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1881). A Golden Wedding is not an overly skillful production, and the poet is best seen in his shorter lyrics. Perhaps The Mothers of the West, which appeared in the Erato No. III., is the best thing he did, and the one poem that will keep his fame green. Gallagher began his literary career with great promise, and he pursued it diligently for some years, but when he should have been doing his finest work, he was winning some prize from an agricultural journal for the best essay on Fruit Culture in the Ohio Valley! He failed to follow the gleam. William D.[Pg 162] Gallagher died at "Fern Rock Cottage," Pewee Valley, Kentucky, June 27, 1894.

Bibliography. Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860); Blades o' Bluegrass, by Fannie P. Dickey (Louisville, 1892).


[From Miami Woods, A Golden Wedding, and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1881)]

The mothers of our Forest-Land!
Stout-hearted dames were they;
With nerve to wield the battle-brand,
And join the border fray.
Our rough land had no braver
In its days of blood and strife—
Aye ready for severest toil,
Aye free to peril life.
The mothers of our Forest-Land!
On old Kentucky's soil,
How shared they, with each dauntless band,
War's tempest, and life's toil!
They shrank not from the foeman,
They quail'd not in the fight,
But cheer'd their husbands through the day,
And soothed them through the night.
The mothers of our Forest-Land!
Their bosoms pillow'd Men;
And proud were they by such to stand
In hammock, fort, or glen;
To load the sure old rifle—
To run the leaden ball—
To watch a battling husband's place,
And fill it should he fall.
The mothers of our Forest-Land!
[Pg 163] Such were their daily deeds:
Their monument—where does it stand?
Their epitaph—who reads?
No braver dames had Sparta—
No nobler matrons Rome—
Yet who or lauds or honors them,
Ev'n in their own green home?
The mothers of our Forest-Land!
They sleep in unknown graves;
And had they borne and nursed a band
Of ingrates, or of slaves,
They had not been more neglected!
But their graves shall yet be found,
And their monuments dot here and there
"The Dark and Bloody Ground!"


Thomas H. Shreve, poet and journalist, was born at Alexandria, Virginia, in 1808. In early life he removed to Louisville, Kentucky, and entered mercantile pursuits. In 1834 Shreve became a Cincinnati editor; but four years later he returned to Louisville to again engage in business. Throughout his business career, Shreve was a constant contributor of poems and prose sketches to the best magazines. He finally abandoned business for literature, and he at once became associate editor of the Louisville Journal. He was not a rugged journalist of the Prentice type, but a cultured and chaste essayist who should have written from his study window, rather than from such a seething hothouse of sarcasm and invective as Prentice maintained. He was a mild-mannered man, a Quaker, who spent his last months on earth in crossing swords with Thomas Babington Macaulay concerning the character of William Penn. In 1851 Shreve's Drayton,[Pg 164] an American Tale, was issued by the Harpers at New York. This work won the author much praise in the East as well as in the West, and it started him upon an honorable career, which was soon cut short by disease. Thomas H. Shreve died at Louisville, December 23, 1853. Prentice penned a splendid tribute to the memory of his dead friend and associate; and some years later a collection of his verse was made as a fitting memorial of his blameless life and literary labors.

Bibliography. The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860); History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); The Shreve Family, by L. P. Allen (Greenfield, Illinois).


[From The Knickerbocker Magazine (August, 1838)]

I have no wife—and I can go
Just where I please, and feel as free
As crazy winds which choose to blow
Round mountain-tops their melody.
On those who have Love's race to run,
Hope, like a seraph, smiles most sweet—
But they who Hymen's goal have won,
Sometimes, 'tis said, find Hope a cheat.
I have no wife—young girls are fair—
But how it is, I cannot tell,
No sooner are they wed, than their
Enchantments give them the farewell.
The girls, oh, bless them! make us yearn
To risk all odds and take a wife—
To cling to one, and not to turn
Ten thousand in the dance of life.
I have no wife:—Who'd have his nose
Forever tied to one lone flower,
[Pg 165] E'en if that flower should be a rose,
Plucked with light hand from fairy bower?
Oh! better far the bright bouquet
Of flowers of every hue and clime;
By turns to charm the sense away,
And fill the heart with dreams sublime.
I have no wife:—I now can change
From grave to joy, from light to sad
Unfettered, in my freedom range
And fret awhile, and, then, be glad.
I now can heed a Siren's tongue,
And feel that eyes glance not in vain—
Make love apace, and, being flung,
Get up and try my luck again.
I have no wife to pull my hair
If it should chance entangled be—
I'm like the lion in his lair,
Who flings his mane about him free.
If 'tis my fancy, I can wear
My boots unblessed by blacking paste,
Cling to my coat till it's threadbare,
Without a lecture on bad taste.
I have no wife, and I can dream
Of girls who're worth their weight in gold;
Can bask my heart in Love's broad beam,
And dance to think it's yet unsold.
Or I can look upon a brow
Which mind and beauty both enhance,
Go to the shrine, and make my bow,
And thank the Fates I have a chance.
I have no wife, and, like a wave,
Can float away to any land,
Curl up and kiss, or gently lave
The sweetest flowers that are at hand.
[Pg 166] A Pilgrim, I can bend before
The shrine which heart and mind approve;—
Or, Persian like, I can adore
Each star that gems the heaven of love.
I have no wife—in heaven, they say,
Such things as weddings are not known—
Unyoked the blissful spirits stray
O'er fields where care no shade has thrown.
Then why not have a heaven below,
And let fair Hymen hence be sent?
It would be fine—but as things go,
Unwedded, folks won't be content!


Ormsby MacKnight Mitchel, the celebrated American astronomer and author, was born near Morganfield, Kentucky, August 28, 1809. He graduated from West Point in the famous class of 1829 which included Robert E. Lee and Joseph E. Johnston, Mitchel was professor of mathematics at West Point for two years; but he later studied law and practiced at Cincinnati for a year. In 1834 he was elected professor of mathematics and astronomy in Cincinnati College. By his own efforts he raised sufficient funds with which to establish an astronomical observatory in Cincinnati, in 1845—now the Mitchel Observatory—the first of the larger observatories in this country. In 1860 Professor Mitchel was chosen as director of the Dudley observatory at Albany, New York, and there he remained for two years. The Civil War coming on, he entered the Union army, and rose to the rank of general. General Mitchel was placed in command of the "Department of the South," but before the war was well under way, almost, he contracted yellow fever and died at Beaufort, South Carolina, October 30,[Pg 167] 1862. General Mitchel was the most distinguished astronomer ever born on Kentucky soil; and in the army the men knew him as "Old Stars." He was a popular lecturer, but it is as an author that his great reputation rests. His books are: The Planetary and Stellar Worlds (New York, 1848); The Orbs of Heaven (1851); A Concise Elementary Treatise of the Sun, Planets, Satellites, and Comets (1860); and The Astronomy of the Bible (New York, 1863). From 1846 to 1848 General Mitchel published an astronomical journal, called The Sidereal Messenger. Harvard and Hamilton Colleges conferred honorary degrees upon him; and he was a member of many scientific societies in the United States and Europe.

Bibliography. Ormsby MacKnight Mitchel, Astronomer and General, by his son, F. A. Mitchel; biographical sketch in The Astronomy of the Bible (New York, 1863); Old Stars, by P. C. Headley (Boston, 1864).


[From The Astronomy of the Bible (New York, 1863)]

If we extend our researches beyond the limits of the solar system, and, passing across the mighty gulf which separates us from the starry heavens, inspect minutely the organizations which are there displayed, we find the dominion of these same laws extending to these remote regions, and holding an imperious sway over revolving suns. Thus we perceive, that in one most important particular, the objects which compose the mighty universe are obviously alike, and seem to have sprung from a common origin. We are, moreover, compelled to admit a sun in every visible star; and if a sun, then attendant planets; and if revolving planets, then, likewise, some scheme of sentient existence, possibly remotely analogous to that which is displayed with such wonderful minuteness in our globe. Thus if the being of a God can be argued from the admirable adaptations which surround man in this nether world, every star that glitters in the vast concave of[Pg 168] heaven proclaims, with equal power, this mighty truth. If we rise still higher, and from the contemplation of individual stars, examine their distribution, their clusterings, their aggregations into immense systems, the fact of their mutual influences, their restless and eternal activity, their amazing periods of revolution, their countless millions, and their ever-during organizations, the mind, whelmed with the display of grandeur, exclaims involuntarily, "This is the empire of a God!"

And now, how is the knowledge of this vast surrounding universe revealed to the mind of man? Here is, perhaps, the crowning wonder. Through the agency of light, a subtle, intangible, imponderable something, originating, apparently, in the stars and suns, darting with incredible velocity from one quarter of the universe to the other, whether in absolute particles of matter shot off from luminous bodies, or by traces of an ethereal fluid, who shall tell? This incomprehensible fluid falls upon an instrument of most insignificant dimensions, yet of most wonderful construction, the human eye, and, lo! to the mind what wonders start into being. Pictures of the most extravagant beauty cover the earth; clouds dipped in the hues of heaven fill the atmosphere; the sun, the moon, the planets, come up from out of the depths of space, and far more amazing still, the distant orbs of heaven, in their relative magnitudes, distances and motions, are revealed to the bewildered mind. We have only to proceed one step further, and bringing to the aid of the human eye, the auxiliary power of the optic glass, the mind is brought into physical association with objects which inhabit the confines of penetrable space. We take cognizance of objects so remote, that even the flashing element of light itself, by which they are revealed, flies on its errand ten times ten thousand years to accomplish its stupendous journey.

Strike the human eye from existence, and at a single blow, the sun is blotted out, the planets fade, the heavens are covered with the blackness of darkness, the vast universe shrinks to a narrow compass bounded by the sense of touch alone.

Such, then, is the organization of the universe, and such the means by which we are permitted to take cognizance of its existence and phenomena. If the feeble mind of man has achieved victories in the natural world—if his puny structures, which[Pg 169] have survived the attacks of a few thousand years, proclaim the superiority of the intelligence of his mind to insensate matter—if the contemplation of the works of art and the triumphs of human genius, swells us into admiration at the power of this invisible spirit that dwells in mortal form,—what shall be the emotions excited, the ideas inspired, by the contemplation of the boundless universe of God?


Albert Taylor Bledsoe, controversialist, was born at Frankfort, Kentucky, November 9, 1809, the son of a journalist. He was appointed from Kentucky to West Point and was graduated in 1830, after which he served in the army in Indian territory until the last day of August, 1832, when he resigned to enter upon the study of law. A year later Bledsoe abandoned law to become a tutor in Kenyon College, Ohio, where he later studied theology and was ordained a clergyman in the Protestant Episcopal church. He was connected with various Ohio churches from 1835 to 1838, but in the latter year he quit the ministry to resume his legal studies and he removed to Springfield, Illinois, where he formed a partnership with the afterwards celebrated statesman and soldier, Colonel Edward D. Baker. Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas were practicing law in Springfield at this time, and Bledsoe knew both of them intimately; but because of his subsequent connection with the Southern Confederacy none of the biographies of these men mention him. For the following ten years Bledsoe practiced his profession at Springfield and Washington, D. C. His first book, An Examination of Edwards's Inquiry into the Freedom of the Will (Philadelphia, 1845), showed that his interest in theological subjects had not waned. In 1848 Bledsoe[Pg 170] was elected professor of mathematics in the University of Mississippi, which position he held for the ensuing six years. His next volume, A Theodicy, or Vindication of the Divine Glory (New York, 1853), gave him a place among theologians. In 1854 Dr. Bledsoe was elected to the chair of mathematics in the University of Virginia, and this he occupied until 1861. While at the University he published An Essay on Liberty and Slavery (Philadelphia, 1856), which anticipated his subsequent action of entering the Confederate army, which he did in 1861, and he was commissioned as a colonel. Dr. Bledsoe was speedily made assistant secretary of war, but this work proved most uncongenial, and he gladly accepted the joint invitation of Davis and Lee to run the blockade, in 1863, and go to England to gather materials for a constitutional argument on the right of secession. He spent three years in London and upon his return to the United States, in February, 1866, he brought his vast researches together in his best known work, Is Davis a Traitor? or was Secession a Constitutional Right Previous to the War of 1861? (Baltimore, 1866). Dr. Bledsoe now took up his residence at Baltimore, and some months later he became editor of a quarterly periodical, The Southern Review, which he conducted for the final years of his life. In 1868 he added the principalship of a Baltimore school to his burdens; and in the same year his last volume appeared, The Philosophy of Mathematics (Philadelphia, 1868). In 1871 Dr. Bledsoe was ordained a minister in the Methodist church, and his Review became the recognized organ of his church. He died at Alexandria, Virginia, December 8, 1877. Dr. Bledsoe was always a student and scholar, but he was essentially a controversialist, often bitter in his statements, but time has mellowed much of this, and he now stands forth as a very remarkable[Pg 171] man. Consider him from a dozen angles, and one will not find his like in the whole range of American history.

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i); Library of Southern Literature, sketch by his daughter, Mrs. Sophie Herrick (Atlanta, 1909, v. i).


[From The Southern Review (Baltimore, April, 1867)]

This history consists of seven great crises. The first of these convulsed the Union, and threatened its dissolution before the new Constitution was formed, or conceived. For how little soever its history may be known, the North and the South, like Jacob and Esau, struggled together, and that, too, with almost fatal desperation, in the womb of the old Union. Slavery had nothing at all to do with that struggle between the North and the South, the dramatis personæ in the tragedy of 1861. It was solely and simply a contest for power.

The second crisis was the formation and adoption of the new Constitution. Much has been said about that event, as the most wonderful revolution in the history of the world; because the government of a great people was then radically changed by purely peaceable means, and without shedding a drop of blood. But if that was a bloodless revolution in itself, no one, who has maturely considered it in all its bearings, can deny that it was, in the end, the occasion of the most sanguinary strife in the annals of a fallen world.

The revolution of 1801, by which the radical notions and doctrines of the infidel philosophers of the eighteenth century gained the ascendency in this country, never more to abate in their onward march, constituted the third great crisis in the political history of the United States. In passing through this crisis, the Republic of 1787 became in practice the Democracy of the following generation; and, finally, the rabid radicalism of 1861. It was then that the democratic, or predominant, element in the Republic, began to swallow up the others, and so became the most odious of all the forms of absolute power or despotism. It was then that the reign of "King Demos," the unchecked and the unlimited[Pg 172] power of mere numbers, was inaugurated, and his throne established on the ruins of American freedom. But, while history will show this, it will also administer the consoling reflection, that American freedom was doomed, from the first, by the operation of other causes, and that the revolution of 1801 only precipitated its fall. If so, then the sooner its fall the better for the world; as in that case its destruction would involve a smaller portion of the human family in its ruins.

The desperate struggle of 1820-21, between the North and the South, relative to the admission of Missouri into the Union; the equally fierce contest respecting the Tariff in 1832-33; the Mexican War, and the acquisition of vast territory, by the dismemberment of a foreign empire, which led to the most violent and angry of all the quarrels between the two sections; constitute the fourth, fifth and sixth crises in the stormy history of the United Sections. The seventh and last great crisis, grew out of the repeal of the Missouri Compromise of 1820, the rise of the Republican party, as it is called; and consisted in the secession of the Southern States, and the war of coercion. Each of these seven crises had, of course, its prelude and its sequel, without which it cannot be comprehended, or seen how it followed the preceding, and how it led to the succeeding crises in the chain of events. Now some of these crises are most imperfectly understood by the public, and, in some respects, most perfectly misunderstood, such as the first two for example; others, and especially the fourth, or the great Compromise of 1820, are overlaid with a mass of lying traditions such as the world has seldom seen; traditions invented by politicians, and industriously propagated by the press and the pulpit. If these traditions were cleared away, and the facts which lie beneath them in the silent records of the country brought to view, the revelation would be sufficient to teach both sections of the Union the profoundest lessons of humiliation and sorrow. If patiently and properly studied, the history of the United States is, perhaps, fraught with as many valuable lessons for the warning and instruction of mankind, as that of any other age or nation since the fall of Rome, since the Flood, or since the fall of man.

[Pg 173]


Richard Hickman Menefee, who with Henry Clay and Thomas F. Marshall form the great triumvirate of early Kentucky orators, was born at Owingsville, Kentucky, December 4, 1809. He was educated at Transylvania University, and graduated from the law school of that institution in 1832. He practiced his profession at Mt. Sterling, Kentucky, for several years, when, in 1836, he was elected to the Kentucky legislature. In the legislature he won a wide reputation as an orator, and rapidly became known as the most gifted man of his age in Kentucky. In the summer of 1837 Menefee made the race for Congress and, after an exciting campaign, it was found that he had defeated his opponent, Judge Richard French. In the lower House of Congress Menefee and Sargeant S. Prentiss of Mississippi were the two young men that compelled the country's attention and admiration as orators. In 1838 William J. Graves, a Kentucky member of the House, killed Jonathan Cilley, representative from a Maine district, and the friend of Nathaniel Hawthorne, in a duel near Washington City. Menefee was one of Graves's seconds. This affair of honor was so bitterly condemned on all sides that Congress was compelled to enact the anti-duelling law. In July, 1838, the people of Boston tendered Daniel Webster a great home-coming banquet, in Faneuil Hall, and Menefee responded very eloquently to a toast to Kentucky. One more session of Congress and he returned to Kentucky, entering upon the practice of law at Lexington, where cases pressed fast upon him. He met Henry Clay in the great Rogers will case of 1840, and Clay got the jury's verdict. Cassius M. Clay placed Menefee in nomination for the United States Senate in the Kentucky legislature of 1841, but his ill-health made his election a hazardous action. A short time before his death he drew up the mature reflections of his[Pg 174] life, in the form of a diary, and this, only recently published, has added to his fame. Menefee died at Lexington, Kentucky, February 20, 1841. Thomas P. Marshall pronounced an eulogy upon him which has taken its rightful place among the masterpieces of American oratory; and in 1869 a Kentucky county was carved out of several other counties and named in his honor. While he was not a constructive statesman, Menefee's fame as an orator seems to grow greater with the passing of the years.

Bibliography. Speeches and Writings of Thomas F. Marshall, by W. L. Barre (Cincinnati, 1858); Richard Hickman Menefee, by John Wilson Townsend (New York, 1907).


[From Richard Hickman Menefee, by John Wilson Townsend (New York, 1907)]

Mr. Chairman:

I cannot remain silent under the sentiment which has just been announced and so enthusiastically received. That sentiment relates not to myself but to Kentucky—dearer to me than self. Of Kentucky I have nothing to say. There she is. In her history, from the period when first penetrated by the white man as the dark and bloody ground, down to the present, she speaks. The character to which that history entitles her is before the world. She is proud of it. She is proud of the past; she is proud of the present. And her pride is patriotic and just. As one of her sons, I ask to express in her name, the acknowledgments due to the complimentary notice you have taken of her, a notice not the less complimentary from its association with the name of Massachusetts.

There is much in the character and history of Massachusetts which should bind her in the strongest bonds to Kentucky. Your sentiment places them together: just where they ought to be. Kentucky is willing to occupy the place you have assigned her. Without respect now to subordinate differences in past events, both States stand knit together by the highest and strongest motives by which States can be impelled. I mean the motive and[Pg 175] purpose common to each of maintaining and upholding, in every extremity and to the very last, the Union of these States and the Constitution. Massachusetts has proclaimed over and over again her resolution not to survive them. Nor will Kentucky survive them. She has embarked her whole destiny—all she has and all she hopes for—in the Union and the Constitution. Let come what may of public calamity, of faction, of sectional seduction or intimidation, or evil in any form the most dreadful to man, Kentucky, like Massachusetts, regards the overthrow of the Union as more frightful than all. Kentucky acknowledges no justification for a disruption of the Union that is not a justification for revolution itself. In that Union, and under that Constitution, Kentucky means to stand or fall. Kentucky stands by the Union in her living efforts; she means to hold fast to it in her expiring groans. With Massachusetts she means to perish, if perish she must, with hands clenched, in death, upon the Union.

[Pg 176]

If the occasion allowed it, I should like to say something of old Massachusetts. I should like to rekindle my own patriotism at her altars. Here—on this very spot—in this very hall—the sacred flame of revolutionary liberty first ascended. Here it has ever ascended. It has never been smothered—never dimmed. Perpetual—clear—holy! Behold its inspirations here in your midst! Where are the doctrines of the Union and the Constitution so incessantly inculcated as here? Where are those doctrines so enthusiastically adopted as here? The principles of the Union and the Constitution—for us another name for the principles of liberty which cannot survive their overthrow—will, in after ages, trace with delight their lineage through you. The blood of freedom is here pure. To be allied to it is to be ennobled. Massachusetts! Which of her multitude of virtues shall I commend? How can I discriminate? I will not attempt it. I take her as she is and all together—I give—Old Massachusetts! God bless her!


George Washington Cutter, one of Kentucky's finest poets, was born in Massachusetts about 1809, but he early came to Covington, Kentucky, and entered upon the practice of his profession, the law. He commanded a company of Kentuckians in the Mexican War with great honor to himself and to them. He had been a constant contributor of verse to the periodicals of his time, but he did not publish his first book until after the war with Mexico. Buena Vista and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1848) was his first collection, and it contained a preface signed from Covington, Kentucky, December, 1847. From this it will be seen that Cutter returned to Kentucky after the war, and that he was living in this State at the time of his book's appearance. Tradition has said that he wrote the title-poem, Buena Vista, a spirited war ballad, on the field of action immediately after the battle. His little volume contained thirty-seven poems, including The Song of Steam, which has been singled out by critics as his masterpiece, an ode to Henry Clay, his political idol, and his fine descriptive poem, The Creation of Woman. This, to the present writer, is the most exquisite thing Cutter did in verse. It is highly and consistently poetical, and it should be better appreciated than it has been. Cutter was married to Mrs. Frances Ann Drake, a famous Kentucky actress, but they were not happy and a separation by mutual agreement subsequently followed. Mrs. Cutter was the widow of Alexander Drake, of the well-known family of that name, and after parting with the poet she resumed her first husband's name, returned to the stage, and managed theatres in Kentucky and Ohio until her death in Oldham county, Kentucky, September 1, 1875. Cutter later removed to Indiana and was a member of the State legislature, after which service he removed to Washington City to accept a government position. In Washington[Pg 177] Cutter continued his poetical output, life in the capital turning his attention to patriotic subjects. Poems, National and Patriotic (Philadelphia, 1857) proved the author to be, for the critics of his time, "the most intensely patriotic poet we have." This volume contained sixty-nine of what he regarded as his best poems. The Song of Steam and Other Poems also appeared in this same year of 1857, and it contained one of the poet's finest efforts, The Song of the Lightning. Cutter died at Washington, D. C., December 24, 1865.

Bibliography. The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, 1860); Adams's Dictionary of American Authors (Boston, 1905).


[From Buena Vista and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1848)]

Harness me down with your iron bands,
Be sure of your curb and rein;
For I scorn the power of your puny hands
As the tempest scorns a chain.
How I laughed as I lay concealed from sight,
For many a countless hour,
At the childish boast of human might,
And the pride of human power.
When I saw an army upon the land,
A navy upon the seas,
Creeping along, a snail-like band,
Or waiting the wayward breeze;
When I marked the peasant faintly reel
With the toil which he daily bore,
As he feebly turned the tardy wheel,
Or tugged at the weary oar;—
When I measured the panting courser's speed,
The flight of the courier dove—
[Pg 178] As they bore the law a king decreed,
Or the lines of impatient love—
I could not but think how the world would feel,
As these were outstripp'd afar,
When I should be bound to the rushing keel,
Or chained to the flying car.
Ha! ha! ha! they found me at last,
They invited me forth at length,
And I rushed to my throne with a thunder-blast,
And I laughed in my iron strength.
Oh! then ye saw a wondrous change
On the earth and the ocean wide,
Where now my fiery armies range,
Nor wait for wind or tide.
Hurrah! hurrah! the waters o'er,
The mountain's steep decline,
Time—space—have yielded to my power—
The world! the world is mine!
The rivers, the sun hath earliest blest,
Or those where his beams decline;
The giant streams of the queenly west,
Or the orient floods divine:
The ocean pales where'er I sweep,
To hear my strength rejoice,
And the monsters of the briny deep
Cower, trembling, at my voice.
I carry the wealth and the lord of earth,
The thoughts of his god-like mind,
The wind lags after my flying forth,
The lightning is left behind.
In the darksome depths of the fathomless mine,
My tireless arm doth play,
Where the rocks never saw the sun decline,
Or the dawn of the glorious day.
[Pg 179] I bring earth's glittering jewels up
From the hidden cave below,
And I make the fountain's granite cup
With a crystal gush o'erflow.
I blow the bellows, I forge the steel,
In all the shops of trade;
I hammer the ore and turn the wheel,
Where my arms of strength are made;
I manage the furnace, the mill, the mint;
I carry, I spin, I weave;
And all my doings I put into print,
On every Saturday eve.
I've no muscle to weary, no breast to decay,
No bones to be "laid on the shelf,"
And soon I intend you may "go and play,"
While I manage this world myself.
But harness me down with your iron bands,
Be sure of your curb and rein;
For I scorn the strength of your puny hands,
As the tempest scorns a chain.


Mrs. Mary Palmer Shindler, poet and novelist, was born at Beaufort, South Carolina, February 15, 1810. She was the daughter of Dr. Benjamin M. Palmer, the celebrated Presbyterian preacher of New Orleans. She was educated in Charleston by the daughter of Dr. David Ramsey, the early historian of South Carolina. Her education was completed in the schools of Connecticut and New Jersey. In 1835 Miss Palmer was married to Charles E. Dana of New York; and in 1848 to Rev. Robert D. Shindler, an Episcopal clergyman. Two years after this marriage they removed to Maryland, and then to Shelbyville,[Pg 180] Kentucky, where Dr. Shindler held a professorship in Shelby College. Shelbyville was Mrs. Shindler's home henceforth, save for short sojourns in other states, and in that town she died about 1880. She was the author of The Southern Harp (1840); The Northern Harp (1841); The Parted Family and Other Poems (1842); The Temperance Lyre (1842); Charles Morton, or the Young Patriot (1843); The Young Sailor (1844); Forecastle Tour (1844); and, Letters to Relatives and Friends on the Trinity (1845). Several of Mrs. Shindler's lyrics are well known.

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. v); The Writers of South Carolina, by George A. Wauchope (Columbia, South Carolina, 1910).


[From The Parted Family and Other Poems (1842)]

I have seen a fragrant flower
All impearled with morning dew;
I have plucked it from the bower,
Where in loveliness it grew.
Oh, 'twas sweet, when gayly vying
With the garden's richest bloom;
But when faded, withered, dying,
Sweeter far its choice perfume.
So the heart, when crushed by sorrow,
Sends its richest streams abroad,
While it learns sweet balm to borrow
From the uplifted hand of God.
Not in its sunny days of gladness
Will the heart be fixed on Heaven;
When 'tis wounded, clothed in sadness,
Oft its richest love is given.
[Pg 181]


Martin John Spalding, seventh archbishop of Baltimore, was born near Lebanon, Kentucky, May 23, 1810. His forebears were Maryland Catholics who had emigrated to Kentucky. He was graduated from St. Mary's College when but sixteen years of age. Spalding then spent four years at St. Joseph's College, Bardstown, Kentucky, and the same number of years in Rome, at the conclusion of which he is said to have made a seven hours' defense in Latin of 256 theological propositions. This exhibition won him a doctor's diploma, and his ordination as a priest. From 1834 to 1843 Dr. Spalding was president of St. Joseph's College in Bardstown. And from 1843 to 1848 he was in charge of the cathedral at Louisville. In 1848 he was consecrated Bishop of Lengone; and two years later Bishop of Louisville. Bishop Spalding served in this capacity until 1864 when, in the presence of four thousand people, he was installed as the seventh archbishop of Baltimore. This high office he held until his death, which occurred at Baltimore, February 7, 1872. Bishop Spalding was the greatest Roman Catholic reviewer and historian Kentucky has produced. He was one of the editors of the Catholic Magazine, and the author of the excellent Sketches of the Early Catholic Missions in Kentucky (Louisville, 1846); The Life, Times, and Character of the Rt. Rev. B. J. Flaget (Louisville, 1852). He also published Lectures on the General Evidences of Christianity (1844); Review of D'Aubigne's History of the Reformation (Baltimore, 1847); History of the Protestant Reformation (1860); and a posthumous volume, Miscellanea (1885). There is also a uniform five volume edition of his works, which is fortunate, as his books, especially the Sketches, and Flaget, are exceedingly scarce.

[Pg 182]

Bibliography. Life of Archbishop Spalding, by his nephew, John L. Spalding (New York, 1872); Adams's Dictionary of American Authors (Boston, 1905).


[From Sketches of the Life, Times, and Character of the Rt. Rev. Benedict Joseph Flaget (Louisville, Kentucky, 1852)]

Bishop Dubourg had sailed from Bordeaux on the 1st of July, 1817; and he had landed at Annapolis on the 4th of September. His suite consisted of five priests—of whom the present Archbishop of New Orleans was one—and twenty-six young men, some of whom were candidates for the ministry, and others were destined to become lay brothers to assist the missionaries in temporal affairs. Several of these youths were from Belgium; and among them was the V. Rev. D. A. Deparcq, of our Diocese. A portion of the company started directly for Baltimore with Bishop Dubourg; the rest, with the Rev. M. Blanc at their head, remained at Annapolis, where they were entertained with princely hospitality in the mansion of Charles Carroll of Carrollton, until the end of October.

Preparations were in the meantime made for crossing the mountains. The stage then ran westward only once a week; and no less than three weeks were consumed in transporting the missionary band to Pittsburgh. The Bishop and M. Blanc were in the last division; but after remaining in the stage for two days, during which time it had repeatedly upset, endangering their lives, they finally abandoned it altogether, and performed the remainder of the journey for five days on foot. About the middle of November, the missionary company embarked on a flatboat; and they reached Louisville on the last day of the month. Here they found the Rev. MM. Chabrat and Shaeffer, who had been sent on by Bishop Flaget to welcome them to Kentucky. Accompanied by them and by the Rev. M. Blanc, Bishop Dubourg started immediately for St. Thomas's, where he arrived in the evening of December 2d.

Bishop Flaget was rejoiced to meet his old friend. "I recognized him instantly," says he; "see! on meeting me, he has the humility to dismount, in order to present me the most affectionate salute that ever was given." Many and long were the "happy[Pg 183] conversations" which he held with his former associate, and now distinguished guest. Bishop Dubourg officiated pontifically, and preached an admirable sermon in the church of St. Thomas,—the only cathedral which the Bishop as yet possessed.

On the 12th of December, the two prelates, accompanied by Father Badin, set out for St. Louis, by the way of Louisville. Here Bishop Dubourg preached in the chapel erected by M. Badin. On the 18th they embarked on the steamboat Piqua, and on the 20th reached the mouth of the Ohio, where they were detained five days by the ice. Their time was passed chiefly in religious exercises and pious conversations.

The following description of the Piqua and its passengers, from the pen of Bishop Flaget, may not be uninteresting to us at the present day, when steamboat building and navigation have so greatly changed for the better:

"Nothing could be more original than the medley of persons on board this boat. We have a band of seven or eight comedians, a family of seven or eight Jews, and a company of clergymen composed of a tonsured cleric, a priest, and two Bishops; besides others, both white and black. Thus more than thirty persons are lodged in an apartment (cabin), twenty feet by twelve, which is again divided into two parts. This boat comprises the old and the new testament. It might serve successively for a synagogue, a cathedral, a theatre, an hospital, a parlor, a dining room, and a sleeping apartment. It is, in fact, a veritable Noah's ark, in which there are both clean and unclean animals;—and what is more astonishing,—peace and harmony reign here."

They were still at the mouth of the Ohio on the morning of Christmas day. Not being able to say three Masses, they determined to make three meditations. At the conclusion of the second, the redoubtable Piqua resumed her course towards St. Louis. The Bishops and clergy made a kind of retreat on their Noah's ark. On the evening of Christmas day, the boat stopped near the farm of the widow Fenwick, a good Catholic, whom they were happy to visit. M. Badin continued his journey by land from this point, in order to be able to visit on the way many of his old friends, Catholic emigrants from Kentucky.

The Bishops returned to the boat, where they found the comedians[Pg 184] performing a play,—that is, engaged in a general fight among themselves,—until they were separated by the captain. At midnight, on the 30th, they arrived at St. Genevieve; and early next morning they sent a messenger to announce their coming to M. De Andreis.

Two hours afterwards, "about thirty of the principal inhabitants came, with several young men on horseback and a carriage, to escort the Bishops into the town. We went to the presbytery to put on our pontifical robes: twenty-four choir-children with the cross at their head, and four citizens bearing a canopy, conducted us to the church, where after the installation of Bishop Dubourg, on a throne specially prepared for the purpose, we sang the Te Deum. The whole day was spent in receiving visits."

On the first day of the year 1818, Bishop Dubourg celebrated Pontifical Mass at St. Genevieve. The journey was then continued to Prairie du Rocher and Cahokias to St. Louis, where the prelates arrived on the 5th. They were received with great pomp, in the best French style; and Bishop Dubourg was no sooner known than he was universally esteemed and beloved. He professed himself much pleased with the dispositions and sentiments of his new flock,—so different from what he had been led to expect.

Bishop Flaget having now completed his mission, preached his farewell sermon to the Catholics of St. Louis on the feast of the Epiphany; and on the next day he turned his face homeward. He and M. Badin performed the journey on horseback, by the way of Kaskaskia and Vincennes. They were detained three days at the former place, not being able to cross the river in consequence of the running ice; and in traversing Illinois they passed three successive nights in the open air of the prairies. They reached Vincennes on the 27th of January; and after remaining here two weeks, attending to missionary duties, they continued their journey.

On the 21st of February, the Bishop found himself once more at his retired and pleasant home in the seminary of St. Thomas.

[Pg 185]


John Woodhouse Audubon, son of the great Audubon, was born at Henderson, Kentucky, November 30, 1812. At the time of his birth his father was ekeing out an existence in Henderson, with saw-mills and lumber ventures of various kinds, all of which finally failed. The nomadic life of the ornithologist was early forced upon his son. Their wanderings were chiefly confined to the country south of the Ohio river, and Louisiana. John Woodhouse Audubon was instructed by his mother in the useful field of learning; but from his father he learned to delineate birds and mammals, though it was the family's desire that he should become a portrait painter. He and his brother, Victor, who was three years his elder, were sent to school together, but, in 1826, they were separated, Victor becoming a clerk at Louisville, Kentucky, and John remaining in Louisiana with his mother, who was then conducting a school, while the father went to Europe to solicit subscriptions for his forthcoming Birds of America. John W. Audubon was at this time engaged in drawing from Nature, and in playing the violin, to which he was devoted throughout life. He was a clerk for a short time on a Mississippi river steamboat, but any kind of routine was distasteful to him, his whole life being absorbed in the study of birds and mammals. He accompanied his father on one of his European trips, and in England and Scotland he copied many of the masterpieces of the great painters. In 1863 the collection of new species demanded that father and son should go as far South as the Gulf of Mexico; and while passing through Charleston, South Carolina, the son met Maria Bachman, whom he married the following year. In 1840 the Audubon house near New York City was built, and there John W. Audubon spent the remaining years of his life. In 1849 he joined a California company to go to the gold fields, but he went not for[Pg 186] gold but for new birds and mammals. He returned in the following year, and in 1851, his famous father died. The brothers were then occupied with the publication of The Quadrupeds, and the octavo edition of The Birds of America. In the summer of 1860 Victor Audubon died; and on February 21, 1862, his brother followed him into the silent country. John Woodhouse Audubon's forty-nine years were spent in collaborating with his father and brother, but his independent fame is founded upon the manuscript record of his 1849 journey from New York to California. This most interesting manuscript was edited by his daughter, Miss Maria R. Audubon, of Salem, New York, and published as Audubon's Western Journal: 1849-1850 (Cleveland, Ohio, 1906). A more charming book of travels, of Nature in many forms, would be difficult to name.

Bibliography. The several lives of the great Audubon contain much material for a study of his son. His daughter made an excellent sketch of him for her edition of his Western Journal: 1849-1850 (Cleveland, 1906).


[From Audubon's Western Journal, 1849-1850 (Cleveland, 1906)]

This "city of the angels" is anything else, unless the angels are fallen ones. An antiquated, dilapidated air pervades all, but Americans are pouring in, and in a few years will make a beautiful place of it. It is well watered by a pretty little river, led off in irrigating ditches like those at San Antonio de Bexar. The whole town is surrounded to the south with very luxuriant vines, and the grapes are quite delightful; we parted from them with great regret, as fruit is such a luxury with us. Many of the men took bushels, and only paid small sums for them.


[From the same]

One more day brought us to this great valley, and the view from the last hill looking to northwest was quite grand, stretching on one hand until lost in distance, and on the other the snowy[Pg 187] mountains on the east of the Tulare valley. Here, for the first time, I saw the Lewis woodpecker, and Steller's jay in this country. I have seen many California vultures and a new hawk, with a white tail and red shoulders. During the dry season this great plain may be travelled on, but now numerous ponds and lakes exist, and the ground is in places, for miles, too boggy to ride over, so we were forced to skirt the hills. This compelled us sometimes to take three days when two should have been ample. Our journeys now are not more than twenty miles a day, and our nights are so penetrating and cold, that four blankets are not too many.


[From the same]

Christmas Day! Happy Christmas! Merry Christmas! Not that here, to me at any rate, in this pandemonium of a city. Not a lady to be seen, and the women, poor things, sad and silent, except when drunk or excited. The place full of gamblers, hundreds of them, and men of the lowest types, more blasphemous, and with less regard for God and his commands than all I have ever seen on the Mississippi, [in] New Orleans or Texas, which give us the same class to some extent, it is true; but instead of a few dozen, or a hundred, gaming at a time, here there are thousands, and one house alone pays one hundred and fifty thousand dollars per annum for the rent of the "Monte" tables.

Sunday makes no difference, certainly not Christmas, except for a little more drunkenness, and a little extra effort on the part of the hotel keepers to take in more money.


Adrien Emmanuel Rouquette, Louisiana's most distinguished poet, was born at New Orleans, February 13, 1813, the scion of an old and honorable Creole family, and the brother of Francois Dominique Rouquette (1810-1890), who was also a poet of much merit. From his boyhood he had a great fancy for the American Indian, and among[Pg 188] them he spent many of his early years. His academic training was begun at Transylvania University of Lexington, Kentucky, but as the old matriculation books have disappeared, it now seems quite impossible to definitely fix his period of residence. From Lexington Rouquette journeyed to Paris, France, where he studied at the Royal College and at Nantes and Remnes. He was graduated from Remnes, March 26, 1833, and at once returned to New Orleans. He had, however, developed into such an unconventional fellow his family decided that a law course in Paris was what he needed, so back to the capital of the French he went. He soon abandoned the law and again returned to New Orleans, where he took up his abode among the Indians. In 1841 Rouquette published his first and best book of poems, written wholly in French, entitled Les Savanes (Paris and New Orleans). Nearly all of the poems were upon Louisiana subjects, save the finest one, Souvenir de Kentucky, an exquisite memorial of his Kentucky days, written in 1838. As he was partly educated in Kentucky and in praise of Kentucky wrote his masterpiece, this State has a double claim upon him which, though secondary to that of Louisiana, is none the less legitimate. In 1842 the poet began his studies for the priesthood, and three years later he was ordained and attached to the Catholic cathedral at New Orleans. His subsequent works include Discours prononce a la Cathedral de Saint Louis (New Orleans, 1846); Wild Flowers (New Orleans, 1848); La Thebaide en Amerique (New Orleans, 1852); L'Antoniade (New Orleans, 1860), a long poem in which a solitary life is extolled; Poemes patriotiques (New Orleans, 1860); St. Catherine Tegehkwitha (New Orleans, 1873); and, La Nouvelle Atala (New Orleans, 1879). In 1859 the Abbé Rouquette established a mission for the Choctaw Indians on the Bayou Lacombe, to which work he gave the larger part of his life. Rouquette also turned into French the[Pg 189] poems of Estelle Anna Lewis (1824-1880), the Baltimore woman whom Poe admired; and he edited Selections from the Poets of all Countries. The three great Louisiana writers, Rouquette, the poet, Fortier, the critic, and Gayarré, the historian, published pamphlets condemnatory of Mr. George W. Cable's conceptions of Creole life and history as set forth in his many books. The Abbé sent his out anonymously, entitled Critical Dialogue between Aboo and Caboo on a New Book, or a Grandissime Ascension, edited by E. Junius (Great Publishing House of Sam Slick Allspice, 12 Veracity street, Mingo City, 1880). From the Creole standpoint The Grandissimes most probably deserved to be satirized, but not in the cheap and easy manner of this little pamphlet. It was a very unhappy swan-song of senility for the Abbé Rouquette. He died at New Orleans, July 15, 1887, lamented by his city and state. Sainte-Beuve, though recognizing the influence of Chateaubriand in Rouquette's work, praised him highly, as did many of the other famous French critics of his day and generation.

Bibliography. Cyclopaedia of American Literature, by E. A. and G. L. Duyckinck (New York, 1856); Louisiana Studies, by Alcée Fortier (New Orleans, 1894); Literature of the Louisiana Territory, by A. N. DeMenil (St. Louis, 1904).


[From Les Savanes, Poésies Americaines (Paris, 1841)]

Kentucky, the bloody land!

Le Seigneur dit à Osée: "Après cela, néanmoins, je l'attirerai doucement à moi, je l'amènerai dans la solitude, et je lui parlerai au coeur."—(La Bible Osee).

Enfant, je dis un soir: Adieu, ma bonne mère!
Et je quittai gaîment sa maison et sa terre,
Enfant, dans mon exil, une lettre, un matin,
[Pg 190] (O Louise!) m'apprit que j'étais orphelin!
Enfant, je vis les bois du Kentucky sauvage,
Et l'homme se souvient des bois de son jeune âge!
Ah! dans le Kentucky les arbres sont bien beaux:
C'est la terre de sang, aux indiens tombeaux,
Terre aux belles forêts, aux séculaires chênes,
Aux bois suivis de bois, aux magnifiques scènes;
Imposant cimetière, où dorment en repos
Tant de rouges-tribus et tant de blanches-peaux;
Où l'ombre du vieux Boon, immobile génie,
Semble écouter, la nuit, l'éternelle harmonie,
Le murmure êternel des immenses déserts,
Ces mille bruits confus, ces mille bruits divers,
Cet orgue des forêts, cet orchestre sublime,
O Dieu! que seul tu fis, que seul ton souffle anime!
Quand au vaste clavier pèse un seul de tes doigts,
Soudain, roulent dans l'air mille flots à la fois:
Soudain, au fond des bois, sonores basiliques,
Bourdonne un océan de sauvages musiques;
Et l'homme, à tous ces sons de l'orgue universel,
L'homme tombe à genoux, en regardant le ciel!
Il tombe, il croit, il prie; et, chrétien sans étude,
Il retrouve, étonné, Dieu dans la solitude!

A portion of this famous poem was translated by a writer in The Southern Quarterly Review (July, 1854).

Here, with its Indian tombs, the Bloody Land
Spreads out:—majestic forests, secular oaks,
Woods stretching into woods; a witching realm,
Yet haunted with dread shadows;—a vast grave,
Where, laid together in the sleep of death,
Rest myriads of the red men and the pale.
Here, the stern forest genius, veteran Boon,
Still harbors: still he hearkens, as of yore,
To never ceasing harmonies, that blend,
At night, the murmurs of a thousand sounds,
That rise and swell capricious, change yet rise,
Borne from far wastes immense, whose mingling strains—
[Pg 191] The forest organ's tones, the sylvan choir—
Thy breath alone, O God! can'st animate,
Making it fruitful in the matchless space!
Thy mighty fingers pressing on its keys,
How suddenly the billowy tones roll up
From the great temples of the solemn depths,
Resounding through the immensity of wood
To the grand gushing harmonies, that speak
For thee, alone, O Father. As we hear
The unanimous concert of this mighty chaunt,
We bow before thee; eyes uplift to Heaven,
We pray thee, and believe. A Christian sense
Informs us, though untaught in Christian books
Awed into worship, as we learn to know
That thou, O God, art in the solitude!


Miss Emily Virginia Mason, biographer and anthologist, was born at Lexington, Kentucky, October 15, 1815, the sister of Stevens Thompson Mason, first governor of Michigan. She was educated in Kentucky schools and in a female seminary at Troy, New York. From 1845 until 1861 Miss Mason lived in Fairfax county, Virginia, but when the Civil War began she left her home and volunteered in the Confederate States hospital service; and she was matron successively of hospitals in the Virginia towns of Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs, Charlottesville, Lynchburg, and Richmond. Miss Mason won a wide reputation in this work, becoming one of the best loved of Southern women. Almost immediately after the war her first literary work was published, an anthology of The Southern Poems of the War (Baltimore, 1867) which was one of the first collection issued of verse which owed its origin to the war. Her second book was what she always said was the first life of Lee, though John Esten Cooke's[Pg 192] account of the great soldier appeared about the same time, entitled A Popular Life of General Robert Edward Lee (Baltimore, 1871). This was followed by her edition of The Journal of a Young Lady of Virginia in 1798 (1871), which enjoyed wide popularity among Virginians of her generation. Miss Mason went to Paris, France, about 1870, and for the following fifteen years she was associate principal of an American school for young women. Upon her return to this country she established herself in an attractive old Southern home at Georgetown, D. C., in which she spent the remainder of her life. Miss Mason's last literary work was Memories of a Hospital Matron, which appeared in The Atlantic Monthly for September and October of 1902. She was an able writer and a most remarkable woman in many respects. Miss Mason died at Georgetown, D. C., February 16, 1909, at the great age of ninety-four years.

Bibliography. Southern Writers, by W. P. Trent (New York, 1905); The Washington Post (February 17, 1909).


[From A Popular Life of General Robert E. Lee (Baltimore, 1871)]

On the evening of this day, 28th of September [1870] after a morning of great fatigue, he attended the vestry meeting referred to, returned home, and seated at the tea-table, opened his lips to give thanks to God.

The family looked up to see the parted lips, but heard no sound. With that last thanksgiving his great heart broke.

For many days his weeping friends hung over him, hoping for a return of health and reason, but in vain. He murmured of battles and sieges; of guarded tents and fields just won. Among his last words were: "Strike my tent! Send for Hill!" Remarkably coincident with those of his great lieutenant, Jackson, whose words were: "Let A. P. Hill prepare for action! March the infantry rapidly to the front! Let us cross the river and rest under the shade of the trees."

[Pg 193]

At 9 o'clock on the morning of the 12th of October, the great soldier breathed his last.

The following day his body was borne to the college-chapel, escorted by a guard of honor composed of Confederate soldiers. Next the hearse was led General Lee's favorite horse "Traveller," who had borne him in so many battles. The Trustees and Faculty of the college, the cadets of the Military Institute, and the citizens, followed in procession.

Above the chapel floated the flag of Virginia, draped in mourning.

Through this and the succeeding day, the body, covered with flowers, lay in state, visited by thousands who came to look for the last time upon his noble features.

On the 15th, the last said rites were rendered, amid the tolling of the bells, the sound of martial music, and the thundering of artillery.

The students, officers and soldiers of the Confederate army, and about a thousand persons, assembled at the chapel. A military escort, with the officers of General Lee's staff, were in the front. The hearse followed, with the faithful "Traveller" close behind it. Next came a committee of the Virginia Legislature, with citizens from all parts of the State. Passing the Military Institute, the cadets made the military salute as the body appeared, then joined the procession, and escorted it back to the chapel.

It had been the request of General Lee that no funeral oration should be pronounced over his remains. His old and long-tried friend, the Rev. Wm. N. Pendleton, simply read the burial services of the Episcopal Church, after which was lowered into a tomb beneath the chapel all that was mortal of Robert E. Lee.

[Pg 194]


Edmund Flagg, traveler, journalist, and poet, was born at Wiscasset, Maine, November 24, 1815. Immediately upon his graduation from Bowdoin College, in 1835, he removed to Louisville, Kentucky, and became a teacher. His letters written to the Louisville Journal while traveling in the states of the Middle West, were afterwards collected, revised, and published anonymously, entitled The Far West, or a Tour beyond the Mountains (New York, 1838, two vols.). This work has been edited by Dr. Reuben Gold Thwaites and published as volumes 26 and 27 of Early Western Travels (Cleveland, 1906). In 1839 Flagg became associate editor of the Louisville Literary News-Letter, of which George D. Prentice was editor. All of his poems of merit were published in the Journal, and News-Letter. Flagg contributed both prose and verse to the Louisville papers for nearly thirty-five years. Ill-health compelled him to abandon journalism for law, and at Vicksburg, Mississippi, he formed a partnership with the celebrated Sargent Smith Prentiss. Two years later he became editor of the Gazette at Marietta, Ohio. Flagg's first two novels were issued about this time, entitled Carrero (New York, 1842), and Francois of Valois (New York, 1842). He was next editor of a publication at St. Louis; and in 1849 he was secretary of the American legation at Berlin. In 1850-1851 he was United States consul at Venice. He afterwards returned to St. Louis and to journalism. Two of his plays, Blanche of Artois, and The Howard Queen, were well received at Louisville, Cincinnati, and several other cities. In 1853 Flagg's Venice, the City of the Sea, appeared, and it won him a wide reputation. North Italy since 1849, issued some years later, resumed the story of Venice where his first work had left off, and brought it down to date. Flagg was afterwards connected with the State department in[Pg 195] Washington, and under an order from Congress he prepared his famous Report on the Commercial Relations of the United States with all Foreign Nations (Washington, 1856-1857, four vols.). His final work was a novel, De Molai, the Last of the Military Templars (1888). Edmund Flagg died at Salem, Virginia, in 1890. He is most certainly a Kentucky poet, journalist, and traveler, but his fame as a dramatist, historian, and novelist belongs wholly to other states.

Bibliography. Literature of the Louisiana Territory, by A. N. DeMenil (St. Louis, 1904); Adams's Dictionary of American Authors (Boston, 1905).


[From The Louisville Literary News-Letter]

Ages since—long ere the first son of the Old World had pressed the fresh soil of the New—long before the bright region beyond the blue waves had become the object of the philosopher's reverie by day, and the enthusiast's vision by night—in the deep stillness and solitude of an unpeopled land, these vast mausoleums rose as they now rise, in lonely grandeur from the plain and looked down even as now they look, upon the giant floods rolling their dark waters at their base, hurrying past them to the deep. So has it been with the massive tombs of Egypt, amid the sands and barrenness of the desert. For ages untold have the gloomy pyramids been reflected by the inundations of the Nile; an hundred generations, they tell us, have arisen from the cradle, and reposed beneath their shadows, and like autumn leaves have dropped into the grave; but, from the midnight of bygone centuries, comes forth no darting spirit to claim these kingly sepulchres as his own! And shall the dusky piles, on the plains of distant Egypt affect so deeply our reverence for the departed, and these mighty monuments, reposing in dark sublimity upon our own magnificent prairies, vailed in mystery more inscrutable than they, call forth no solitary throb? Is there no hallowing interest associated with these aged relics—these tombs, and temples, and towers' of another race, to elicit emotion? Are[Pg 196] they indeed to us no more than the dull clods we tread upon? Why then does the wanderer from the far land gaze upon them with wonder and veneration? Why linger fondly around them, and meditate upon the power which reared them, and is departed? Why does the poet, the man of genius and fancy, or the philosopher of mind and nature, seat himself at their base, and with strange and undefined emotions, pause and ponder, amid the loneliness that slumbers around? And surely, if the far traveler, as he wanders through this Western Valley, may linger around these aged piles, and meditate upon a power departed—a race obliterated—an influence swept from the earth forever—and dwell with melancholy emotions upon the destiny of man, is it not meet, that those into whose keeping they seem by Providence consigned, should regard them with interest and emotion?—that they should gather up and preserve every incident relevant to their origin, design, or history, which may be attained, and avail themselves of every measure, which may give to them perpetuity, and hand them down, undisturbed in form or character, to other generations?

That these venerable piles are of the workmanship of man's hand, no one, who with unprejudiced opinion has examined them, can doubt. But with such an admission, what is the cloud of reflections, which throng and startle the mind? What a series of unanswerable inquiries succeed! When were these enormous earth heaps reared up from the plain? By what race of beings was the vast undertaking accomplished? What was their purpose?—what changes in their form and magnitude have taken place?—what vicissitudes and revolutions have, in the lapse of centuries, rolled like successive waves over the plains at their base? As we reflect, we anxiously look around us for some tradition—some time-stained chronicle—some age-worn record—even the faintest and most unsatisfactory legend, upon which to repose our credulity, and relieve the inquiring solicitude of the mind. But our research is hopeless. The present race of Aborigines can tell nothing of these tumuli. To them as to us they are vailed in mystery. Ages since—long ere the white-face came—while this fair land was yet the home of his fathers—the simple Indian stood before the venerable earth-heap, and gazed, and wondered, and turned away.

[Pg 197]


Mrs. Catherine Ann Warfield, poet and novelist, was born at Natchez, Mississippi, June 6, 1816, the daughter of Nathaniel H. Ware. She was educated at Philadelphia with her sister, Eleanor P. Ware Lee (1820-1849), with whom she afterwards collaborated in her first two volumes. Catherine Ware was married at Cincinnati, in 1833, to Robert Elisha Warfield, of Lexington, Kentucky, and Kentucky was her home henceforth. The Wife of Leon, and Other Poems, by Two Sisters of the West (New York, 1844), and The Indian Chamber, and Other Poems (New York, 1846) were the works of the sisters. In 1857 Mrs. Warfield removed from Lexington to Pewee Valley, Kentucky, near Louisville, and some three years later her masterpiece appeared, entitled The Household of Bouverie (New York, 1860, two vols.). This work brought her into wide notice. During the Civil War Mrs. Warfield wrote some of the most spirited lyrics which that mighty conflict called forth. After the war she turned again to prose fiction, producing the following books: The Romance of the Green Seal (1867); Miriam Monfort (1873); A Double Wedding (1875); Hester Howard's Temptation (1875); Lady Ernestine (1876); Miriam's Memoirs (1876); Sea and Shore (1876); Ferne Fleming (1877); and her last novel, The Cardinal's Daughter (1877). Mrs. Warfield died at Pewee Valley, Kentucky, May 21, 1877, at the time of her greatest popularity. Of her books The Household of Bouverie is the only one that is generally known to-day, and is, perhaps, the only one that is at all readable and interesting. Mrs. Warfield was an early edition of "The Duchess" and Mary Jane Holmes, though she did write fine war lyrics and one good story, which is just a bit better than either of the other two women did.

Bibliography. Women of the South Distinguished in Literature, by Mary Forrest (New York, 1861); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1910, v. xii).

[Pg 198]


[From The Household of Bouverie (New York, 1860, v. ii)]

Another queer scene with little Paul, whose quaint ways divert and mystify me all the time. During Mr. Bouverie's absence of a week, I have nothing else to amuse me nor to write about. He has called me familiarly "Camilla" until now; but fearing that Mr. Bouverie might not like the appellation, or rather that it might make me appear too childish in his sight, I said to him recently:

"Paul, you are a little fellow, and I am your guardian's wife. Don't you think it would sound better if you were to add a handle to my name, as common folks say? Call me 'Cousin Camilla' or 'Aunt Camilla,' whichever you prefer; which shall it be, Quintil?"

"Neither," he replied, manfully, "for you are neither of those things to me, and I do not like to tell stories; but I will call you 'madam,' if you choose, as you are a 'madam;'" and something like a sneer wreathed his childish lips.

"A foolish little madam, you think, Paul!" I rejoined, half in pique, half in playfulness.

"Why that is the very name for you," he said, brightening with the thought. "'Little Madam!' I will call you so; but I will not put in the foolish," he added, gravely, "for, perhaps, you will change after a while and grow wiser."

He spoke very seriously, sorrowfully almost, and I was quite provoked for a moment to be set down in this fashion, by such a mere babe and suckling. I was glad of the opportunity presented to me of snubbing him by noticing a streak of molasses on his cheek.

"Go wash your face, Paul," I said, "it is dirty!"

He walked gravely to the glass and surveyed the stain. "Looking glasses are useful things, after all," he said; "they tell the truth—see 'Little Madam,' how you are mistaken! my face is not dirty, only soiled; food is not dirt—if it were, we should all starve."

He turned and smiled at me in his peculiar way, half mocking, half affectionate.

[Pg 199]

"Yet, as you bid me," he added, "I will wash it off; but isn't it a pity to waste what would keep a bee alive a whole day!"

Is this brat a humorist?

He has brought out of his funny little trunk the oddest present for me! It is a Medusa's head admirably carved in alabaster, and was broken from the side of a vase by accident, and given to him by a lady, at whose house he made a visit with Mr. Bouverie.

He considers it a priceless treasure. There is a vague horror to me in the face that is almost insupportable. The snaky hair, the sightless, glaring eyes, are so mysteriously dreadful. He says it will answer for a paper weight. No, Paul, I will lay it away out of sight forever.


(Written for a Kentucky Company)

[From Southern Poems of the War, edited by Emily V. Mason (Baltimore, 1867)]

We pledge thee, Lee!
In water or wine,
In blood or in brine,
What matter the sign?
Whether brilliantly glowing,
Or darkly overflowing,
So the cup is divine
That we fill to thee!
Gloomy or glorious,
Fainting and bleeding,
Advancing, receding,
Lingering or leading,
Captive or free;
With swords raised on high,
With hearts nerved to die,
Or to grasp victory;
Hand to hand—knee to knee,
With a wild three times three
[Pg 200] We pledge thee, Lee!
We pledge thee, chief:
In the name of our nation,
Her wide devastation,
Her sore desolation,
Her grandeur and grief!
Where'er thou warrest
When our need is the sorest,
Or in Fortress or forest,
Bidest thy time;
Thou—Heaven elected,
Thou—Brother selected,
What e'er thy fate be,
Our trust is in thee,
And our faith is sublime.
With swords raised on high,
With hearts nerved to die,
Or to grasp victory;
Hand to hand—knee to knee,
With a wild three times three,
We pledge thee, Lee!


John Ross Browne, humorist and traveler, was born in Ireland, in 1817, but when an infant his father came to America and settled at Louisville, Kentucky. Browne was educated in the Louisville schools, and studied medicine for a time under several well-known physicians. When eighteen years old he went to New Orleans; and this journey kindled his passion for travel that ended only with his death. Browne took the whole world for his home. He first went almost around the globe on a whaling vessel, and on his return to this country, he published his first book, called Etchings of a Whaling Cruise (New[Pg 201] York, 1846). Browne was private secretary for Robert J. Walker, Secretary of the Treasury, for a time, but, in 1849, he went to California as a government commissioner; and in 1851 he went to Europe as a newspaper correspondent. A tour of Palestine is described in Browne's most famous book, Yusef, or the Journey of the Frangi (New York, 1853). He shortly afterwards returned to the United States and became an inspector of customs on the Pacific coast; but the year of 1861 found him again in Europe, residing at Frankfort-on-the-Main. Browne's next work was Crusoe's Island (New York, 1864). His family's residence in Germany resulted in the author publishing An American Family in Germany (New York, 1866), one of his most delightful volumes. Browne's travels in northern Europe are described in The Land of Thor (New York, 1867). He now returned to America and made his home in California. He investigated the mineral resources of the country west of the Rocky Mountains, and his report was issued as Resources of the Pacific Slope (1869). Adventures in the Apache Country (1869), was his last book. Browne was appointed United States Minister to China on March 11, 1868, but he was recalled sixteen months later. He died at Oakland, California, December 9, 1875. Most of his volumes are very cleverly illustrated with his own comical sketches of characters and scenes. That J. Ross Browne was a man of very considerable ability in several directions admits of no argument.

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. i); National Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1900, v. viii).


[From An American Family in Germany (New York, 1866)]

One of the most remarkable sights is the dog-fancier—a strapping six-foot dandy, leading after him, with silken strings, a[Pg 202] whole brood of nasty little poodles. This fellow is a type of the class; you meet them everywhere at every Continental city. There are thousands of them in Frankfort, men strangely infatuated on the subject of little dogs. Now pardon me if I devote some serious reflections to this extraordinary and unreasonable propensity, which, I fear, is rapidly taking root in the hearts of the American people, especially the female portion of our population. In men it is often excusable; they may be driven to it by unrequited affection. I never see a fine-looking fellow leading a gang of little poodle-dogs after him, that I don't imagine he has had some dreadful experience in the line of true love; but with the opposite sex the case is quite different. "If women have one weakness more marked than another," says Mrs. Beecher Stowe, in a very eloquent passage of the "Minister's Wooing," "it is toward veneration. They are born worshippers—makers of silver shrines for some divinity or other, which, of course, they always think fell straight down from heaven." And, in illustration of this very just remark, she refers to instances where celebrated preachers and divines have stood like the image that Nebuchadnezzar the king set up, "and all womankind, coquettes and flirts not excepted, have been ready to fall down and worship, even before the sound of cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, and so forth," where the most gifted and accomplished of the sex "have turned away from the flattery of admirers, to prostrate themselves at the feet of a genuine hero, who never moved them except by heroic deeds and the rhetoric of a noble life"—a most striking and beautiful trait in woman's character to which all homage should be rendered. She clingeth unto man, even as the ivy clingeth unto the oak. But does anybody pretend to tell me that man is always the lucky recipient of this devotion? Alas, no! Not always for him is it that women are burdened with this load of "fealty, faith, and reverence more than they know what to do with;" not always for him is it that "They stand like a hedge of sweet peas, throwing out fluttering tendrils everywhere for something high and strong to climb by." Alas! man is but a cipher among the objects of woman's heroic devotion. I have a lady in my eye who from early youth has bestowed the tenderest affections of her heart upon poll-parrots; another, who for[Pg 203] years has wept over the woes of a little chicken; who would abandon her midnight slumber to minister to the afflictions of a lame turkey, and insensible to the appeals of her lover, only relax in her severity when moved by the plaintive mewing of a cat; another, who, in the bosom of her family, and tenderly adored by her husband, has long since yielded to the fascinating allurement of a sewing-machine, and wrapped around its cogwheels, cotton spools, and hammering needles the poetry of a romantic attachment; and, lastly, the particular case in point, at which I marvel most of all, three most bewitching young ladies, of acknowledged beauty, who are hopelessly and irrevocably gone in love with—what do you think? Not a man, erect and noble, with the brow of Jove and eye of Mars; not even a horse, the paragon of beautiful and intelligent animals, or a lion, the king of the forest; but a miserable, dirty, nasty, little lapdog; a snappish, foul-eyed inodorous, sneaking little brute, which even the very cats hold in contempt! And yet they love it; at least they say so, and I have no reason to dispute their word. Have I not heard them, morning, noon, and night, protest their devotion to the dear little Fidel—the precious, beautiful little Fidel—the adorable love of a little Fidel! Oh, it is enough to make the angels weep to see the grace and fondness with which this horrid little wretch is caught up in those tender white arms, and hugged to those virgin bosoms and kissed by those pouting and honeyed lips! Faugh! It drives me mad. What is the use of wasting so much sweetness when there are thousands of good, honest fellows actually pining away from unrequited affection? brave sons of toil, ready at a moment's notice to be caressed by these sweet-pea vines, who are throwing out their fluttering tendrils for something high and strong to cling to. I leave it to any honest miner, if it is not provoking to the last degree to see the noblest capacity of woman's nature thus cruelly and wastefully perverted—the choicest affections devoted to a miserable, disgusting, and unsympathizing little monster—the very honey of their lips lavished on that foul and mucous nose, which, if it knows anything, must know some thing not fit to be mentioned to polite ears. Heaven! how often have I longed to have a good fair kick at one of these pampered little brutes. Only think of the care taken of them, while widows[Pg 204] and orphans are shivering in the cold and perishing of hunger. The choicest pieces of meat cut up for them, potatoes and gravy mixed, delicate morsels of bread; the savory mess put before them by delicate hands, and swallowed into their delicate stomachs, and too often rejected by those delicate organs, to the detriment of the carpet. And then, when this delectable subject of woman's adoration is rubbed, and scrubbed, and pitied, and physicked, and thoroughly combed out from head to foot, with every love-lock of his glossy hair filtered of its fleas, how tenderly he is laid upon the bed or clasped in the embraces of beauty! Shade of Cupid! what a happy thing it is to be a lapdog! Well might the immortal Bard of Avon prefer to be a dog that bayed the moon rather than an indifferent poet. For my part, I'd sooner be wrapped in the arms of beauty than be King of the Cannibal Islands. That strange infatuation of feminine instinct which lends to the head-dress, at an approaching bridal, a degree of importance to which the expected groom can never aspire; which sees the destinies of the whole matrimonial career centred in the fringe of a nightgown; which seeks advice and consolation in the pattern of a reception-dress; which would shrink from the fearful sacrifice of liberty but for the magic power of new bonnets, new gloves, and embroidered handkerchiefs—that we can all understand; these are woman's coy devices to tantalize mankind; these are the probationary tortures inflicted upon him through mere wantonness and love of mischief. But when the richest treasures of her affection, the most divine essence of her being, the Promethean spark warm from her virgin heart, for which worlds are lost and won—when these are cast away upon a nauseous little lapdog, ye gods! what can poor mortals do but abandon their humanity! It is shocking to think of such competition, but how can we help it if young ladies give themselves up to dog worship? I sincerely trust this Continental fashion may never take root in California. Should it do so, farewell all hope for the honest sons of toil; it will then be the greatest of good fortunes to be born a lapdog!

[Pg 205]


Robert Morris, who is generally bracketed with Albert Pike as the most distinguished writer and craftsman American Masonry has produced, was born near Boston, Massachusetts, August 31, 1818. He was made a Mason in Mississippi, in 1846, and this was the beginning of a Masonic career almost without parallel in the history of the fraternity. Morris, of course, received all of the higher degrees in Masonry, but the most momentous thing he did as a craftsman was to establish the Order of the Eastern Star in 1850—the year he became a Kentuckian. In September, 1854, while living in southern Kentucky, Morris wrote his most celebrated poem, entitled The Level and the Square, which was first published in his magazine, The American Freemason, of Louisville, Kentucky. Rudyard Kipling lifted a line from it for his equally famous poem, The Mother Lodge. Although Morris revised his lines many times, the original version is far and away the finest. In 1858 he was elected Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Kentucky; and two years later he removed his residence to La Grange, Kentucky, the little town with which his fame is intertwined. Morris wrote several well-known religious songs, Sweet Galilee, being the best of them. He was the author of many books upon Masonry, his Lights and Shadows of Freemasonry (Louisville, 1852), being the first work in Masonic belles-lettres. This was followed by his History of the Morgan Affair (New York, 1852); Life in the Triangle (1853); The Two Saints John (1854); Code of Masonic Law (Louisville, 1855), the pioneer work on Masonic jurisprudence; Masonic Book of American Adoptive Rights (1855); History of Freemasonry in Kentucky (Frankfort, 1859), his most important historical work; Synopsis of Masonic Laws (1859); Tales of Masonic Life (1860); Masonic Odes and Poems (New York, 1864); Biography of Eli Bruce (1867);[Pg 206] Dictionary of Freemasonry (1872); Manual of the Queen of the South (1876); Knights Templar's Trumpet (1880); Freemasonry in the Holy Land (New York, 1882), an excellent work; The Poetry of Freemasonry (New York, 1884), upon the publication of which, the author was invited to New York City and crowned "The Poet Laureate of Freemasonry," December 17, 1884; and, Magnum Opus (1886). Morris was one of the foremost numismatics of his day and generation in America, his works on this science being The Twelve Caesars, and Numismatic Pilot. He was also the author of several works designed especially for the officers of a Masonic lodge; and he edited in thirty volumes The Universal Masonic Library, besides editing from time to time four Masonic magazines. Rob Morris, to give him the name by which he is best known, died at La Grange, Kentucky, July 31, 1888.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. iv).


[From The American Freemason (Louisville, Kentucky, September 15, 1854)]

We meet upon the Level and we part upon the Square:
What words of precious meaning those words Masonic are!
Come let us contemplate them, they are worthy of our thought—
With the highest and the lowest, and the rarest they are fraught.
We meet upon the Level, though from every station come—
The King from out his palace and the poor man from his home;
For the one must leave his diadem without the Mason's door,
And the other finds his true respect upon the checkered floor.
We part upon the Square for the world must have its due;
We mingle with its multitude, a cold, unfriendly crew;
But the influence of our gatherings in memory is green,
[Pg 207] And we long, upon the Level, to renew the happy scene.
There's a world where all are equal—we are hurrying towards it fast—
We shall meet upon the Level there when the gates of death are passed;
We shall stand before the Orient, and our Master will be there
To try the blocks we offer His unerring square.
We shall meet upon the Level there, but never thence depart:
There's a mansion—'tis all ready for each zealous, faithful heart:—
There's a Mansion and a welcome, and a multitude is there,
Who have met upon the Level and been tried upon the Square.
Let us meet upon the Level, then, while laboring patient here—
Let us meet and let us labor tho' the labor seem severe;
Already in the western sky the signs bid us prepare,
To gather up our working tools and part upon the square.
Hands around, ye faithful Ghiblimites, the bright, fraternal chain,
We part upon the Square below to meet in heaven again;—
Oh, what words of precious meaning those words Masonic are—
We meet upon the Level and we part upon the Square.


Mrs. Amelia B. Welby, Kentucky's most famous female poet of the mid-century, was born at St. Michael's, Maryland, February 3, 1819. When she was fifteen years old her family removed to Louisville, Kentucky, the city of her fame. In 1837, George D. Prentice, with his wonderful nose for finding female verse-makers, added Amelia to his already long and ever-increasing list. He printed her first poem in his Journal, and crowned her as the finest branch of his poetical tree. His declaration that she possessed the divine afflatus meant nothing, as he had said the same thing about many another sentimental single[Pg 208] lady, pining upon the peaks of poesy. But Edgar Allan Poe and Rufus W. Griswold soon separated her from the versifiers and placed her among the poets, and thus her fame has come down to us with fragrance. In June, 1838, Amelia was married to George Welby, a Louisville merchant, who also held her to be a poet born in the purple. Mrs. Welby's verse became well-known and greatly admired in many parts of the country, and, in response to numerous requests for a volume of her work, she collected her Journal verse and published it under the title of Poems by Amelia (Boston, 1845). A second edition was published the following year, and by 1860 the volume was said to be in its seventeenth edition! Robert W. Weir's illustrated edition of her poems was issued in 1850, and this is the most desirable form in which her work has been preserved. These various editions will at once convey some idea of her great popularity. With Poe, Prentice, and Griswold singing her praises, and the public purchasing her poems as rapidly as they could be made into books, Amelia's fame seemed secure. To-day, however, no one has read any of her verse save The Rainbow, which has been set down as her best poem, and she has become essentially an historical personage, the keepsake of Kentucky letters. While the greater number of her poems are quite unreadable, her elegy for Miss Laura M. Thurston, a sister versifier, is well done and her finest piece of work. Mrs. Welby died at Louisville, May 3, 1852, when but thirty-three years of age. Had she lived longer, and the poetic appreciation of the American people suffered no change, the heights to which she would have attained can be but vaguely guessed at.

Bibliography. Female Poets of America, by R. W. Griswold (Philadelphia, 1856); The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, 1860).

[Pg 209]


[From Poems by Amelia (Boston, 1845)]

I sometimes have thoughts, in my loneliest hours,
That lie on my heart like the dew on the flowers,
Of a ramble I took one bright afternoon
When my heart was as light as a blossom in June;
The green earth was moist with the late fallen showers,
The breeze fluttered down and blew open the flowers,
While a single white cloud, to its haven of rest
On the white-wing of peace, floated off in the west.
As I threw back my tresses to catch the cool breeze,
That scattered the rain-drops and dimpled the seas,
Far up the blue sky a fair rainbow unrolled
Its soft-tinted pinions of purple and gold.
'Twas born in a moment, yet, quick as its birth
It had stretched to the uttermost ends of the earth,
And, fair, as an angel, it floated as free,
With a wing on the earth and a wing on the sea.
How calm was the ocean! how gentle its swell!
Like a woman's soft bosom it rose and it fell;
While its light sparkling waves, stealing laughingly o'er,
When they saw the fair rainbow, knelt down on the shore.
No sweet hymn ascended, no murmur of prayer,
Yet I felt that the spirit of worship was there,
And bent my young head, in devotion and love,
'Neath the form of the angel, that floated above.
How wide was the sweep of its beautiful wings!
How boundless its circle! how radiant its rings!
If I looked on the sky, 'twas suspended in air;
If I looked on the ocean, the rainbow was there;
Thus forming a girdle, as brilliant and whole
As the thoughts of the rainbow, that circled my soul.
Like the wing of the Deity, calmly unfurled,
[Pg 210] It bent from the cloud and encircled the world.
There are moments, I think, when the spirit receives
Whole volumes of thought on its unwritten leaves,
When the folds of the heart in a moment unclose
Like the innermost leaves from the heart of a rose.
And thus, when the rainbow had passed from the sky,
The thoughts it awoke were too deep to pass by;
It left my full soul, like the wing of a dove,
All fluttering with pleasure, and fluttering with love.
I know that each moment of rapture or pain
But shortens the links in life's mystical chain;
I know that my form, like that bow from the wave,
Must pass from the earth, and lie cold in the grave;
Yet O! when death's shadows my bosom encloud,
When I shrink at the thought of the coffin and shroud,
May Hope, like the rainbow, my spirit enfold
In her beautiful pinions of purple and gold.


[From The Poets and Poetry of the West, edited by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860)]

She has passed, like a bird, from the minstrel throng,
She has gone to the land where the lovely belong!
Her place is hush'd by her lover's side,
Yet his heart is full of his fair young bride;
The hopes of his spirit are crushed and bowed
As he thinks of his love in her long white shroud;
For the fragrant sighs of her perfumed breath
Were kissed from her lips by his rival—Death.
Cold is her bosom, her thin white arms
All mutely crossed o'er its icy charms,
As she lies, like a statue of Grecian art,
With a marbled brow and a cold hushed heart;
Her locks are bright, but their gloss is hid;
Her eye is sunken 'neath its waxen lid:
And thus she lies in her narrow hall—
[Pg 211] Our fair young minstrel—the loved of all.
Light as a bird's were her springing feet,
Her heart as joyous, her song as sweet;
Yet never again shall that heart be stirred
With its glad wild songs like a singing bird:
Ne'er again shall the strains be sung,
That in sweetness dropped from her silver tongue;
The music is o'er, and Death's cold dart
Hath broken the spell of that free, glad heart.
Often at eve, when the breeze is still,
And the moon floats up by the distant hill,
As I wander alone 'mid the summer bowers,
And wreathe my locks with the sweet wild flowers,
I will think of the time when she lingered there,
With her mild blue eyes and her long fair hair;
I will treasure her name in my bosom-core;
But my heart is sad—I can sing no more.


Charles Wilkins Webber, the foremost Kentucky writer of prose fiction and adventure of the old school, was born at Russellville, Kentucky, May 29, 1819, the son of Dr. Augustine Webber, a noted Kentucky physician. In 1838 young Webber went to Texas where he was with the Rangers for several years. He later returned to Kentucky and studied medicine at Transylvania University, Lexington, which he soon abandoned for a brief course at Princeton Theological Seminary, with the idea of entering the Presbyterian ministry. A short time afterwards, however, he settled at New York as a literary man. Webber was connected with several newspapers and periodicals, being associate editor of The Whig Review for about two years. His first book, called Old Hicks, the Guide (New York, 1848) was followed by The Gold Mines of the[Pg 212] Gila (New York, 1849, two vols.). In 1849 Webber organized an expedition to the Colorado country, but it utterly failed. Several of his other books were now published: The Hunter-Naturalist (Philadelphia, 1851); Tales of the Southern Border (1852; 1853); Texas Virago (1852); Wild Girl of Nebraska (1852); Spiritual Vampirism (Philadelphia, 1853); Jack Long, or the Shot in the Eye (London, 1853), his masterpiece; Adventures with Texas Rifle Rangers (London, 1853); Wild Scenes in the Forest and Prairie (London, 1854); and his last book, History of Mystery (Philadelphia, 1855). In 1855 Webber joined William Walker's expedition to Central America, and in the battle of Rivas, he was mortally wounded. He died at Nicaragua, April 11, 1856, in the thirty-seventh year of his age. Webber's career is almost as interesting as his stories. In fact, he put so much of his life into his works that all of them may be said to be largely autobiographical.

Bibliography. Cyclopaedia of American Literature, by E. A. and G. L. Duyckinck (New York, 1856); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. vi).


[From Wild Scenes in the Forest and Prairie, or the Romance of Natural History (London, 1854)]

"The Bridge" at Jessup's River is well known to sportsmen; and to this point we made our first flyfishing expedition. The eyes of Piscator glistened at the thought, and early was he busied with hasty fingers through an hour of ardent preparation amongst his varied and complicated tackle. Now was his time for triumph. In all the ruder sports in which we had heretofore been engaged, I, assisted by mere chance, had been most successful; but now the infallible certainty of skill and science were to be demonstrated in himself, and the orthodoxy of flies vindicated to my unsophisticated sense.

The simple preparations were early completed; the cooking[Pg 213] apparatus, which was primitive enough to suit the taste of an ascetic, consisted in a single frying-pan. The blankets, with the guns, ammunition, rods, etc., were all disposed in the wagon of our host, which stood ready at the door. It was a rough affair, with stiff wooden springs, like all those of the country, and suited to the mountainous roads they are intended to traverse, rather than for civilized ideas of comfort. We, however, bounded into the low-backed seat; and if it had been cushioned to suit royalty, we could not have been more secure than we were of such comfort as a backwood sportsman looks for. We soon found ourselves rumbling, pitching, and jolting, over a road even worse than that which brought us first to the lake. It seemed to me that nothing but the surprising docility of the ponies which drew us, could have saved us, strong wagon and all, from being jolted to atoms. I soon got tired of this, and sprang out with my gun, determined to foot it ahead, in the hope of seeing a partridge or red squirrel.

We arrived at the "bridge" about the middle of the afternoon. There we found an old field called Wilcox's clearing, and, like all places I had seen in this fine grazing region, it was still well sodded down in blue grass and clover. Our luggage having been deposited in the shantee, consisting almost entirely of boards torn from the old house, which were leaned against the sides of two forks placed a few feet apart, we set off at once for the falls, a short distance above. This was merely an initial trial, to obtain enough for dinner, and find the prognostics of the next day's sport in feeling the manner of the fish.

At the falls the river is only about fifteen feet wide, though its average width is from twenty-five to thirty. The water tumbles over a ledge of about ten feet, at the bottom of which is a fine hole, while on the surface sheets of foam are whirled round and round upon the tormented eddies, for the stream has considerable volume and power.

We stepped cautiously along the ledge, Piscator ahead, and holding his flies ready for a cast, which was most artistically made, not without a glance of triumph at me, then preparing to do the same with the humble angle-worm. The "flies" fall—I see the glance of half a dozen golden sides darting at them; but[Pg 214] by this time my own cast is made, and I am fully occupied with the struggles of a fine trout.

My companion's success was again far short of mine, and seeing him looking at my trout lying beside me, I said: "Try the worms, good Piscator—here they are. This is not the right time of day for them to take the flies in this river, I judge."

Improving the door of escape thus opened to him, he took off the flies and used worms with immediate and brilliant success, which brought back the smile to his face; and he would now and then as calmly brush away the distracting swarm of flies from his face, as if they had been mere innocent motes. But later that evening came a temporary triumph for Piscator. The hole at the falls was soon exhausted, and we moved down to glean the ripples. It was nearly sunset, and here the pertinacious Piscator determined to try the flies again. He cast with three, and instantly struck two half-pound trout, which, after a spirited play, he safely landed. Rarely have I seen a prouder look of triumph than that which glowed on his face as he bade me "look there!" when he landed them.

"Very fine, Piscator—a capital feat! but I fear it was an accident. You will not get any more that way."

"We shall see, sir," said he, and commenced whipping the water again, but to no avail, while I continued throwing them out with great rapidity.

I abstained from watching him, for I had no desire to spoil his evening sport by taunting him to continue his experiment. I soon observed him throwing out the fish with great spirit again. I merely shouted to him across the stream—"the angle-worm once more, Piscator?"

"Yes!" with a laugh.

As the sun went down the black gnats began to make themselves felt in their smarting myriads, and we forthwith beat a hasty retreat to the shantee.

We had taken about ten pounds of trout; and the first procedure, after reaching the camp, was to build a "smudge," or smoke-fire, to drive away these abominable gnats, which fortunately take flight with the first whiff of smoke, and the next was to prepare the fish for dinner, though not till all had been carefully[Pg 215] dressed by the guide, and placed in the cold current of the little spring near, that they might keep sound. Now came the rousing fire, and soon some splendid trout were piled upon dishes of fresh pealed elm bark before us. They were very skillfully cooked, and no epicure ever enjoyed a feast more thoroughly than we did our well-flavored and delicious trout, in that rude shantee.

The feast being over, then to recline back upon the fresh couch of soft spruce boughs, and, with a cigar in mouth, watch the gathering night-shades brooding lower and more low upon the thick wild forest in front, far into the depths of which the leaping flames of our crackling fire go, darting now and then with a revealing tongue of quick light, and listening to the owl make hoarse answer to the wolf afar off—to think of wild passages in a life of adventure years ago amidst surroundings such as this; with the additional spice of peril from savages and treacherous foes, and then, as the hushed life subsides into a stiller mood, see the faces of loved ones come to you through the darkness, with a smile from out your distant home, and while it sinks sweetly on your heart, subside into happy and dream-peopled slumber! "This is bliss!" the bliss of the shantee to the wearied sportsman! a bliss unattainable by the toiler, and still more by the lounger of the city.

We were on foot with the sun next morning, and after another feast, which we appreciated with unpalled appetites, we set off for some deep spring holes nearly a mile above the falls. The morning set cloudy, and rain fell piteously for several hours. But if this change detracted from our sport, it at least served to give zest to the evening's shelter and repose.

I never felt more delightfully than I did when I sat down to a fine dinner that evening in the old tavern, and very much of this pleasurable feeling of entire comfort I attributed to the prompt use of the cold bath, on reaching our temporary home, wet, weary, and shivering with cold. This, with a change of clothes, restored me to a healthy glow of warmth, ready to enjoy whatever our host might provide.

[Pg 216]


Dr. Lewis Jacob Frazee, author of a little volume of travels of considerable charm, was born at Germantown, Kentucky, August 23, 1819. He was prepared for college at the Maysville Academy, celebrated as the school at which young U. S. Grant spent one year. He was graduated from Georgetown College, Georgetown, Kentucky, in the class of 1837; and four years later he graduated in the medical department of the University of Louisville. On April 9, 1844, Dr. Frazee left Maysville, Kentucky, for a long sojourn in Europe, spending most of his time in Paris studying subjects then untaught in this country. He also visited England and the continent before returning home. These travels Dr. Frazee related in a book of nearly three hundred pages, entitled The Medical Student in Europe (Maysville, Kentucky, 1849), which is now an exceedingly rare work. The style is natural and clear and exhibits genuine literary flavor. He settled at Louisville in 1851. His only other publication was The Mineral Waters of Kentucky (Louisville, 1872), a brochure. Dr. Frazee took a keen interest in the Filson Club of Louisville, and one of his finest papers was read before that organization: An Analysis of the Personal Narrative of James O. Pattie. He was sometime professor in the medical school of the University of Louisville, and in the Kentucky School of Medicine; and he edited The Transylvania Medical Journal for several years. Old age found the good doctor surrendering his practice and professorships to establish the Louisville Dental Depot, designed to furnish the local dentists with supplies. He died at Louisville, Kentucky, August 12, 1905, eleven days before his eighty-sixth birthday.

Bibliography. The Courier-Journal (Louisville, Kentucky, August 13, 1905); letters from Dr. Thos. E. Pickett, the Maysville historian, to the present writer.

[Pg 217]


[From The Medical Student in Europe (Maysville, Kentucky, 1849)]

Havre is a place of about 25,000 inhabitants, has fine docks, which are accessible in high tide, and a considerable amount of shipping. Many of the streets are narrow and crooked, with narrow sidewalks and in many cases none at all. The houses are stuccoed, and generally present rather a sombre aspect. Three-fourths of the women we saw in Havre wore no bonnets, but simply a cap. Some of them were mounted upon donkeys, with a large market basket swung down each side of the animal; these of course were the peasants. My attention was attracted by the large sumpter horses here, which draw singly from eight to ten bales of cotton, apparently with considerable ease.

On the day after we arrived at Havre we ascended the hill which rises at one extremity of the city. The various little winding pathways up the hill, have on each side massive stone walls, with now and then a gateway leading to a private residence almost buried in a thicket of shrubbery and flowers. Upon the hill are situated some most delightful and elegant mansions, with grounds beautifully ornamented with shade trees, shrubbery, flowers and handsome walks. These salubrious retreats have a double charm when compared with the thronged, narrow, and noisy streets of the city below. Beyond these Villas were fields of grass and grain undivided by fences, with here and there a farm house surrounded by a clump of trees.

In Havre we found delightful cherries and strawberries, as well as a variety of vegetables; the oysters and fish here though in abundance are of rather an inferior quality, the oysters are very small and of a decided copperish taste. At breakfast, which we took at any hour in the morning that we thought proper, we ordered such articles as suited our fancy, generally however a cup of coffee, a beef steak, eggs, an omelet or something of this sort. We dined about five in the evening upon soups, a variety of meats and vegetables, well prepared, and a dessert of strawberries and other fruits, nuts, etc. The meats and vegetables were not placed upon the table, but each dish was passed around separately—the table being cleared and clean plates placed for[Pg 218] each course. We were compelled to eat slowly or wait for some time upon others.

This would not suit one of our western men who is for doing everything in a minute, but the plan certainly has its advantages—one, of promoting digestion by giving time for the mastication of the food, and another, of no small moment for an epicure, that of having things fresh from the oven. My own objection to the plan was, that I never knew how much of an article to eat, as I did not know what would next be introduced. Such an objection fails, of course, in many of the hotels where the bill of fare is stereotyped, and where with more precision than an almanac-maker you can foretell every change that will take place during the ensuing year. Our table was well supplied with wine, which is used as regularly at dinner as milk by our Kentucky farmers. When our bill was made out, each item was charged separately, so much for breakfast, mentioning what it consisted of—so much for dinner—so much per day for a room, so much for each candle we used, and so on. A French landlord in making out your bill goes decidedly into minutiae.


Theodore O'Hara, author of the greatest martial elegy in American literature, was born at Danville, Kentucky, February 11, 1820. He was the son of Kane O'Hara, an Irish political exile, and a noted educator in his day and generation. O'Hara's boyhood days were spent at Danville, but his family settled at Frankfort when he was a young man. He was fitted for college by his father, and his preparation was so far advanced that he was enabled to join the senior class of St. Joseph's College, a Roman Catholic institution at Bardstown, Kentucky. Upon his graduation O'Hara was offered the chair of Greek, but he declined it in order to study law. In 1845 he held a position in the United States Treasury department[Pg 219] at Washington; and a few years later he proved himself a gallant soldier upon battlefields in Mexico, being brevetted major for meritorious service. After the war O'Hara practiced law at Washington for some time; and he went to Cuba with the Lopez expedition of 1850. After his return to the United States he edited the Mobile, Alabama, Register for a time; and he was later editor of the Frankfort, Kentucky, Yeoman. O'Hara was a public speaker of great ability, and his address upon William Taylor Barry, the Kentucky statesman and diplomat, is one of the climaxes of Southern oratory. During the Civil War he was colonel of the twelfth Alabama regiment. After the war Colonel O'Hara went to Columbus, Georgia, and became a cotton broker. He died near Guerrytown, Alabama, June 6, 1867. Seven years later his dust was returned to Kentucky, and re-interred in the State cemetery at Frankfort. If collected Colonel O'Hara's poems, addresses, political and literary essays, and editorials would make an imposing volume. His real fame rests upon his famous martial elegy, The Bivouac of the Dead, which he wrote at Frankfort in the summer of 1847, to remember young Henry Clay, Colonel McKee, Captain Willis, and the other brave fellows who fell in the war with Mexico. When their remains were returned to Frankfort and buried in the cemetery on the hill, Colonel O'Hara, their old companion in arms, wrote his stately in memoriam for them. He did not read it over them, as Ranck and the others have written, but he did publish it in The Kentucky Yeoman, a Democratic paper of Frankfort. The Bivouac of the Dead is the greatest single poem ever written by a Kentucky hand, is matchless, superb, and is read in the remotest corners of the world. Its opening lines have been cut deep within memorial shafts in many military cemeteries. Colonel O'Hara sleeps to-day on the outer circle of his comrades, one with them in death as in[Pg 220] life, with the lofty military monument, which Kentucky has erected to commemorate her sons slain in the battles of the republic, casting its long shadows across his grave. His elegy in honor of Daniel Boone was written at the "old pioneer's" grave in the Frankfort cemetery before his now much-mutilated monument was erected. It was originally printed in The Kentucky Yeoman for December 19, 1850. Two other poems purporting to be his have been discovered, but there must be others sealed over and forgotten in the scattered and broken files of Southern newspapers and periodicals. So the poet has come down to us, like he who wrote The Burial of Sir John Moore, with one slender sheaf under his arm. But it is enough, enough for both of them.

Bibliography. George W. Ranck's little books: O'Hara and His Elegies (Baltimore, 1875); The Bivouac of the Dead and Its Author (1898; 1909); Daniel E. O'Sullivan's paper in The Southern Bivouac (Louisville, January, 1887); Robert Burns Wilson's fine tribute in The Century Magazine (May, 1890). The late Mrs. Susan B. Dixon, the Henderson historian, left a MS. life of O'Hara that is to be issued shortly.


[From O'Hara and His Elegies, by George W. Ranck (Baltimore, 1875)]

The muffled drum's sad roll has beat
The soldier's last tattoo;
No more on life's parade shall meet
The brave and daring few.
On Fame's eternal camping-ground
Their silent tents are spread,
And Glory guards with solemn round
The bivouac of the dead.
No answer of the foe's advance
Now swells upon the wind;
[Pg 221] No troubled thought at midnight haunts
Of loved ones left behind;
No vision of the morrow's strife
The warrior's dream alarms;
No braying horn nor screaming fife
At dawn shall call to arms.
Their shivered swords are red with rust;
Their plumed heads are bowed;
Their haughty banner, trailed in dust,
Is now their martial shroud;
And plenteous funeral-tears have washed
The red stains from each brow,
And their proud forms, in battle gashed,
Are free from anguish now.
The neighing steed, the flashing blade,
The trumpet's stirring blast;
The charge, the dreadful cannonade,
The din and shout, are past;
No war's wild note, nor glory's peal,
Shall thrill with fierce delight
Those breasts that nevermore shall feel
The rapture of the fight.
Like the dread northern hurricane
That sweeps his broad plateau,
Flushed with the triumph yet to gain,
[Pg 222] Came down the serried foe.[9]
Our heroes felt the shock, and leapt
To meet them on the plain;
And long the pitying sky hath wept
Above our gallant slain.
Sons of our consecrated ground
Ye must not slumber there,
Where stranger steps and tongues resound
Along the headless air.
Your own proud land's heroic soil
Shall be your fitter grave:
She claims from war his richest spoil—
The ashes of her brave.
So 'neath their parent turf they rest;
[Pg 223] Far from the gory field;
Borne to a Spartan mother's breast
On many a bloody shield.
The sunshine of their native sky
Smiles sadly on them here,
And kindred hearts and eyes watch by
The heroes' sepulchre.
Rest on, embalmed and sainted dead!
Dear as the blood you gave,
No impious footsteps here shall tread
The herbage of your grave;
Nor shall your glory be forgot
While fame her record keeps,
Or honor points the hallowed spot
Where valor proudly sleeps.
Yon marble minstrel's voiceless tone
In deathless songs shall tell,
When many a vanquished age hath flown,
The story how ye fell.
Nor wreck, nor change, or winter's blight,
Nor time's remorseless doom,
Shall dim one ray of holy light
That gilds your glorious tomb.


[From the same]

A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
Knight-errant of the wood!
Calmly beneath the green sod here
He rests from field and flood;
The war-whoop and the panther's screams
No more his soul shall rouse,
For well the aged hunter dreams
Beside his good old spouse.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
[Pg 224] Hushed now his rifle's peal;
The dews of many a vanish'd year
Are on his rusted steel;
His horn and pouch lie mouldering
Upon the cabin-door;
The elk rests by the salted spring,
Nor flees the fierce wild boar.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
Old Druid of the West!
His offering was the fleet wild deer,
His shrine the mountain's crest.
Within his wildwood temple's space
An empire's towers nod,
Where erst, alone of all his race,
He knelt to Nature's God.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
Columbus of the land!
Who guided freedom's proud career
Beyond the conquer'd strand;
And gave her pilgrim sons a home
No monarch's step profanes,
Free as the chainless winds that roam
Upon its boundless plains.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
The muffled drum resound!
A warrior is slumb'ring here
Beneath his battle-ground.
For not alone with beast of prey
The bloody strife he waged,
Foremost where'er the deadly fray
Of savage combat raged.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
A dirge for his old spouse!
For her who blest his forest cheer,
[Pg 225] And kept his birchen house.
Now soundly by her chieftain may
The brave old dame sleep on,
The red man's step is far away,
The wolf's dread howl is gone.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
His pilgrimage is done;
He hunts no more the grizzly bear
About the setting sun.
Weary at last of chase and life,
He laid him here to rest,
Nor recks he now what sport or strife
Would tempt him further west.
A dirge for the brave old pioneer!
The patriarch of his tribe!
He sleeps—no pompous pile marks where,
No lines his deeds describe.
They raised no stone above him here,
Nor carved his deathless name—
An empire is his sepulchre,
His epitaph is Fame.


[From The Southern Bivouac (Louisville, Kentucky, January, 1887)]

Thou art not my first love,
I loved before we met,
And the memory of that early dream
Will linger round me yet;
But thou, thou art my last love,
The truest and the best.
My heart but shed its early leaves
To give thee all the rest.


[From the same]

I'd lie for her,
I'd sigh for her,
I'd drink the river dry for her—
But d——d if I would die for her.
[Pg 226]


[From Obituary Addresses (Frankfort, Kentucky, 1855)]

On his accession to the Presidency, General Jackson—with that discerning appreciation of the most available ability and worth in his party which characterized him—called Mr. Barry into his cabinet to the position of Postmaster General. Here, as one of the most distinguished of the council of Jackson, during the greater part of his incumbency, he is entitled to his full share of the fame of that glorious administration. His health, however, failing him under the wasting labors of the toilsome department over which he presided, he was forced to relinquish it before the administration terminated; and General Jackson, unwilling entirely to lose the benefit of his able services, appointed him, in 1835, Minister Plenipotentiary and Envoy Extraordinary to Spain, a post in which, while its dignity did not disparage his civil rank, it was hoped that the lightness of the duties, and the influence of a genial climate, might serve to renovate his impaired health. But it was otherwise ordained above. He had reached Liverpool on the way to his mission, when the great conqueror, at whose summons the strongest manhood, the noblest virtue, the proudest genius, and the brightest wisdom must surrender, arrested his earthly career on the 30th of August, 1835; and here is all that is left to us of the patriot, the orator, the hero, the statesman, the sage—the rest belongs to Heaven and to fame.

Such, fellow-citizens, is a most cursory and feeble memento of the life and public services of the illustrious man in whose memory Kentucky has decreed the solemn honors of this day. It is well for her that she has felt "the late remorse of love," and reclaimed these precious ashes to her heart, after they have slumbered so many years unsepultured in a foreign land; that no guilty consciousness of unworthy neglect may weigh upon her spirit, and depress her proud front with shame; that no reproaching echo of that eloquent voice that once so sweetly thrilled her, pealing back upon her soul amidst her prideful recollections of the past, may appal her in her feast of memory, and blast her revel of glory; that no avenging muse, standing among the shrines of her departed greatness, and searching in vain for that which should[Pg 227] mark her remembrance of one she should so devoutly hallow, shall have reason to sing of her as she has sung:

"Ungrateful Florence! Dante sleeps afar;
And Scipio, buried by the upbraiding shore."

Here, beneath the sunshine of the land he loved, and amid the scenes which he consecrated with his genius, he will sleep well. Sadly, yet proudly will his fond foster-mother receive within her bosom to-day this cherished remnant of the child she nursed for fame; doubly endeared to her, as he expired far away in a stranger land, beyond the reach of her maternal embrace, and with no kindred eyes to light the gathering darkness of death, no friendly hand to soften his descent to the grave, no pious orisons to speed his spirit on its long journey through eternity. Gently, reverently let us lay him in this proud tabernacle, where he will dwell embalmed in glory till the last trump shall reveal him to us all radiant with the halo of his life. Let the Autumn's wind harp on the dropping leaves her softest requiem over him; let the Winter's purest snows rest spotless on his grave; let Spring entwine her brightest garland for his tomb, and Summer gild it with her mildest sunshine. Here let the marble minstrel rise to sing to the future generations of the Commonwealth the inspiring lay of his high genius and his lofty deeds. Here let the patriot repair when doubts and dangers may encompass him, and he would learn the path of duty and of safety—an oracle will inhabit these sacred graves, whose responses will replenish him with wisdom, and point him the way to virtuous renown. Let the ingenuous youth who pants for the glories of the forum, and "the applause of listening Senates," come hither to tune his soul by those immortal echoes that will forever breathe about this spot and make its silence vocal with eloquence. And here, too, let the soldier of liberty come, when the insolent invader may profane the sanctuary of freedom—here by this holy altar may he fitly devote to the infernal gods the enemies of this country and of liberty.

We will now leave our departed patriot to his sleep of glory. And let no tear moisten the turf that shall wrap his ashes. Let no sound of mourning disturb the majestic solitude of his grand repose. He claims no tribute of sorrow. His body returns to its[Pg 228] mother earth, his spirit dwells in the Elysian domain of God, and his deeds are written on the roll of Fame.

"Let none dare mourn for him."


Mrs. Sarah Tittle Bolton, author of Paddle Your Own Canoe, was born at Newport, Kentucky, in 1820. When she was about three years old, her father removed to Indiana, settling first in Jennings county, but later moving on to Madison. When a young woman, she contributed poems to the Madison newspaper which attracted the editor, Nathaniel Bolton, so strongly that he married the author. They moved to Indianapolis, and Mrs. Bolton soon gained a wide reputation as a poet. Her ode sung at the laying of the corner-stone of the Masonic Temple, in 1850, won her a loving cup from the Masons of Hoosierdom. Two years later her poem in honor of the hero of Hungary, Louis Kossuth, increased her fame. In 1855 Mr. Bolton was appointed consul to Geneva, Switzerland, and his wife accompanied him to his post. They remained in Switzerland for three years, during which time Mrs. Bolton acted as correspondent for the Cincinnati Commercial. In 1858 she and her husband returned to Indianapolis, in which city he died some months later. Her Poems (New York, 1856) brought her newspaper and periodical verse together; and a complete collection, with a notice of her life, was published at Indianapolis in 1886. Mrs. Bolton was Indiana's foremost female singer for many years. She died at Indianapolis in 1893. Of her many poems Paddle Your Own Canoe is the best known, although Left on the Battlefield is admired by many of her readers.

[Pg 229]

Bibliography. The Poets and Poetry of the West, by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, 1860); The Hoosiers, by Meredith Nicholson (New York, 1900).


[From The Poets and Poetry of the West, edited by W. T. Coggeshall (Columbus, Ohio, 1860)]

Voyager upon life's sea,
To yourself be true,
And where'er your lot may be,
Paddle your own canoe.
Never, though the winds may rave,
Falter nor look back;
But upon the darkest wave
Leave a shining track.
Nobly dare the wildest storm,
Stem the hardest gale,
Brave of heart and strong of arm,
You will never fail.
When the world is cold and dark,
Keep an aim in view;
And toward the beacon-mark
Paddle your own canoe.
Every wave that bears you on
To the silent shore,
From its sunny source has gone
To return no more.
Then let not an hour's delay
Cheat you of your due;
But, while it is called to-day,
Paddle your own canoe.
If your birth denies you wealth,
Lofty state and power,
Honest fame and hardy health
Are a better dower.
[Pg 230] But if these will not suffice,
Golden gain pursue;
And to gain the glittering prize,
Paddle your own canoe.
Would you wrest the wreath of fame
From the hand of fate?
Would you write a deathless name
With the good and great?
Would you bless your fellow-men?
Heart and soul imbue
With the holy task, and then
Paddle your own canoe.
Would you crush the tyrant wrong,
In the world's free fight?
With a spirit brave and strong,
Battle for the right.
And to break the chains that bind
The many to the few—
To enfranchise slavish mind—
Paddle your own canoe.
Nothing great is lightly won,
Nothing won is lost;
Every good deed, nobly done,
Will repay the cost.
Leave to Heaven, in humble trust,
All you will to do;
But if you succeed, you must
Paddle your own canoe.
[Pg 231]


John Cabell Breckinridge, the youngest of the American vice-presidents, distinguished as a public speaker, was born near Lexington, Kentucky, January 21, 1821. He was educated at Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, and then studied law at Transylvania University. Breckinridge lived at Burlington, Iowa, for a year, when he returned to Lexington, Kentucky, to practice law. He served in the Mexican War, and was afterwards a member of Congress. In 1856, when he was about thirty-five years of age, he was elected vice-president of the United States, with James Buchanan as president. In 1860 Breckinridge was the candidate of the Southern slaveholders for the presidency, but Abraham Lincoln received 180 electoral votes to his 72, Kentucky failing to support him. He took his seat in the United States Senate in March, 1861, as the successor of John J. Crittenden, and he at once became the champion of the Southern Confederacy in that body. He was expelled from the Senate on December 4, 1861, on which occasion he delivered his farewell address. Breckinridge then went South. He was appointed a major-general, and he saw service at Shiloh, Chickamauga, Cold Harbor, Nashville, and in several other great battles. From January to April, 1865, General Breckinridge was Jefferson Davis's secretary of war. When the Confederacy surrendered, he made his escape to Europe, where he remained for three years, when he returned to Lexington and to his law practice. General Breckinridge died at Lexington, Kentucky, May 17, 1875. Ten years later an imposing statue was erected to his memory on Cheapside, Lexington. He was a man of most attractive personality, an eloquent orator, a capable advocate, a brave soldier, an honest public servant, the greatest member of the house of Breckinridge.

[Pg 232]

Bibliography. The Library of Oratory (New York, 1902, v. x); J. C. S. Blackburn's oration upon Breckinridge; McClure's Magazine (January, 1901). For many years Col. J. Stoddard Johnston has been engaged upon a life of Breckinridge.


[From Obituary Addresses on the Occasion of the Death of the Hon. Henry Clay (Washington, 1852)]

Imperishably associated as his name has been for fifty years with every great event affecting the fortunes of our country, it is difficult to realize that he is indeed gone forever. It is difficult to feel that we shall see no more his noble form within these walls—that we shall hear no more his patriot tones, now rousing his countrymen to vindicate their rights against a foreign foe, now imploring them to preserve concord among themselves. We shall see him no more. The memory and fruits of his services alone remain to us. Amidst the general gloom, the Capitol itself looks desolate, as if the genius of the place had departed. Already the intelligence has reached almost every quarter of the Republic, and a great people mourn with us to-day, the death of their most illustrious citizen. Sympathizing as we do deeply with his family and friends, yet private affliction is absorbed in the general sorrow. The spectacle of a whole community lamenting the loss of a great man, is far more touching than any manifestation of private grief. In speaking of a loss which is national, I will not attempt to describe the universal burst of grief with which Kentucky will receive these tidings. The attempt would be vain to depict the gloom that will cover her people, when they know that the pillar of fire is removed, which has guided their footsteps for the life of a generation.

The life of Mr. Clay, sir, is a striking example of the abiding fame which surely awaits the direct and candid statesman. The entire absence of equivocation or disguise, in all his acts, was his master-key to the popular heart; for while the people will forgive the errors of a bold and open nature, he sins past forgiveness who deliberately deceives them. Hence Mr. Clay, though often defeated in his measures of policy, always secured the respect of his opponents without losing the confidence of his friends. He never paltered in a double cause. The country was never in doubt as to[Pg 233] his opinions or his purposes. In all the contests of his time, his position on great public questions was as clear as the sun in a cloudless sky. Sir, standing by the grave of this great man, and considering these things, how contemptible does appear the mere legerdemain of politics! What a reproach is his life on that false policy which would trifle with a great and upright people! If I were to write his epitaph, I would inscribe, as the highest eulogy, on the stone which shall mark his resting-place, "Here lies a man who was in the public service for fifty years, and never attempted to deceive his countrymen."

While the youth of America should imitate his noble qualities, they may take courage from his career, and note the high proof it affords that, under our equal institutions, the avenues of honour are open to all. Mr. Clay rose by the force of his own genius, unaided by power, patronage, or wealth. At an age when our young men are usually advanced to the higher schools of learning, provided only with the rudiments of an English education, he turned his steps to the West, and amid the rude collisions of a border-life, matured a character whose highest exhibitions were destined to mark eras in his country's history. Beginning on the frontiers of American civilization, the orphan boy, supported only by the consciousness of his own powers, and by the confidence of the people, surmounted all the barriers of adverse fortune, and won a glorious name in the annals of his country. Let the generous youth, fired with honorable ambition, remember that the American system of government offers on every hand bounties to merit. If, like Clay, orphanage, obscurity, poverty, shall oppress him; yet if, like Clay, he feels the Promethean spark within, let him remember that his country, like a generous mother, extends her arms to welcome and to cherish every one of her children whose genius and worth may promote her prosperity or increase her renown.

Mr. Speaker, the signs of woe around us, and the general voice announce that another great man has fallen. Our consolation is that he was not taken in the vigour of his manhood, but sank into the grave at the close of a long and illustrious career. The great statesmen who have filled the largest space in the public eye, one by one are passing away. Of the three great leaders of the Senate, one alone remains, and he must follow soon. We shall witness[Pg 234] no more their intellectual struggles in the American Forum; but the monuments of their genius will be cherished as the common property of the people, and their names will continue to confer dignity and renown upon their country.

Not less illustrious than the greatest of these will be the name of Clay—a name pronounced with pride by Americans in every quarter of the globe; a name to be remembered while history shall record the struggles of modern Greece for freedom, or the spirit of liberty burn in the South American bosom; a living and immortal name—a name that would descend to posterity without the aid of letters, borne by tradition from generation to generation. Every memorial of such a man will possess a meaning and a value to his countrymen. His tomb will be a hallowed spot. Great memories will cluster there, and his countrymen, as they visit it, may well exclaim—

"Such graves as his are pilgrim shrines,
Shrines to no creed or code confined;
The Delphian vales, the Palestines,
The Meccas of the mind."


James Weir, Senior, an early Kentucky romancer, was born at Greenville, Kentucky, June 16, 1821. He was the son of James Weir, a Scotch-Irish merchant and quasi-author. He was graduated from Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, in 1840, and later studied law at Transylvania University. He engaged in the practice of law at Owensboro, Kentucky—first known as the Yellow Banks—and on March 1, 1842, he was married to Susan C. Green, daughter of Judge John C. Green of Danville. Weir wrote a trilogy of novels which do not deserve the obscurity into which they have fallen. They were called Lonz Powers, or the Regulators (Philadelphia, 1850, two[Pg 235] vols.); Simon Kenton, or the Scout's Revenge (Philadelphia, 1852); and The Winter Lodge, or Vow Fulfilled (Philadelphia, 1854). All of these romances were thrown upon historical backgrounds, and they created much favorable criticism at the time of their publication. Weir wrote numerous sketches and verses, but these were his only published books. Business, bar sufficient to all literary labors, pressed hard upon him, and he practically abandoned literature. In 1869 he was elected president of the Owensboro and Russellville railroad; and for nearly forty years he was president of the Deposit bank at Owensboro. Weir died at Owensboro, Kentucky, January 31, 1906. His son, Dr. James Weir, Junior, was an author of considerable reputation.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); letters of Mr. Paul Weir to the Author.


[From Simon Kenton; or, The Scout's Revenge (Philadelphia, 1852)]

By the side of the Sergeant [Duffe, in whose North Carolina home the tale opens] sat a stout, powerfully framed, and wild-looking being, whose visage, though none of the whitest (for it was very unfashionably sunburnt), betokened an Anglo-Saxon; whilst his dress and equipments went far to proclaim him a savage; and, had it not been for his language (though none of the purest), it would have been somewhat difficult to settle upon his race! In a court of justice, especially in the South, where color is considered prima facie evidence of slavery, we wouldn't have given much for his chance of freedom. Simon Kenton, or Sharp-Eye, for such were the titles given him by his parents, and by his border companions, and he answered readily to them both, in his dress and appearance, presented a striking picture of the daring half savage characters everywhere to be found at that day (and, indeed, at the present time) upon our extreme western frontier. A contemporary of Boone, and one of the most skillful and determined scouts of Kentucky, or the "Cane-Land," as it was[Pg 236] then sometimes called, Kenton's dress, composed of a flowing hunting-shirt of tanned buckskin, with pants, or rather leggins, of the same material—a broad belt, buckled tight around his waist, supporting a tomahawk and hunting-knife—a gay pair of worked moccasins, with a capacious shot-pouch swung around his neck and ornamented with long tufts of black hair, resembling very much, as in truth they were, the scalp-locks of the western Indian, gave him a decidedly savage appearance, and declared at once his very recent return from a dangerous life upon the frontier. He had been a fellow-soldier of Duffe during the Revolution; but, after the war, being of an adventurous and daring disposition, had wandered out West, where he had already become famous in the many bloody border frays between the savage and early settler, and was considered second, in skill and cool bravery, to no scout of the "Dark and Bloody Ground." On a visit to the Old States, as they were called at that period to distinguish them from the more recent settlements in the West, Kenton was sojourning, for the time, with his old friend and companion in arms, not without a hope that, by his glowing descriptions of the flowing savannas beyond the Blue Ridge, and of the wild freedom of a frontier life, he might induce the latter to bear him company upon his return to Kentucky. Six feet two inches in his moccasins, with a well-knit sinewy frame to match his great height, and with a broad, full, and open face, tanned and swarthy, it is true, yet pleasant and bright, with a quiet, good-humored smile and lighted up by a deep-blue eye, and with heavy masses of auburn hair, and whiskers sweeping carelessly around and about his countenance, Kenton exhibited in his person, as he sat before the fire of the Sergeant, a splendid specimen of the genuine borderer, and no wonder the Indian brave trembled at the redoubted name of Sharp-Eye, and instinctively shrank from a contest with so formidable a foe. Although, now surrounded by friends, and in the house of an old comrade, the scout, as was natural with him from long custom, still held grasped in his ready hand the barrel of his trusty rifle, from which he never parted, not even when he slept, and, at the same time, kept his ears wide awake to all suspicious sounds, as if yet in the land of the enemy, and momentarily expecting the wild yell of his accustomed foe. Notwithstanding[Pg 237] he was well skilled in every species of woodcraft, an adept at following the trail of the wild beasts of the forest, and familiar with all the cunning tricks of the wily savage; yet, strange as it may appear, he was the most credulous of men, and as simple as a child in what is generally termed the "ways of the world," or, in other words, the tortuous windings of policy and hypocrisy, so often met with under the garb of civilization. Indeed, it has been said of him "that his confidence in man, and his credulity were such that the same man might cheat him twenty times; and, if he professed friendship, he might cheat him still!" At the feet of the scout lay the inseparable companion of all his journeyings, his dog; and Bang, for such was the name of this prime favorite, was as rough a specimen of the canine species as his master's countenance was of the face divine! But Bang was, nevertheless, a very knowing dog, and, ever and anon, now as his master became excited in his descriptions of western scenes and adventures, he would raise his head and look intelligently at the narrator, and so wisely did he wag his shaggy tail, that more than once the warm-hearted hunter, breaking off suddenly in his narrative, would pat his trusty comrade upon the head, and swear, with a hearty emphasis, "that Bang knew all about it!"


Mrs. Mary E. Wilson Betts, the author of a single lyric which has preserved her name, was born at Maysville, Kentucky, in January, 1824. Miss Wilson was educated in the schools of her native town, and, on July 10, 1854, she was married to Morgan L. Betts, editor of the Detroit Times. She died at Maysville two months later, or on September 19, 1854, of congestion of the brain, believed to have been caused by the great gunpowder explosion near Maysville on August 13, 1854. Mrs. Betts's husband died in the following October. While she wrote many poems, her brief tribute to Col. William Logan Crittenden,[Pg 238] kinsman of John J. Crittenden, who was a member of Lopez's filibustering expedition to Cuba, in 1850, has preserved her name for the present generation. Colonel Crittenden was captured by the Cubans, shot, and his brains beaten out. Before the shots were fired he was requested to kneel, but he made his now famous reply: "A Kentuckian kneels to none except his God, and always dies facing his enemy!" When, in her far-away Kentucky home, Mrs. Betts learned of Crittenden's fate, she wrote her tribute to the memory of the gallant son of Kentucky, which was first printed in the Maysville Flag. The editor introduced the little poem thus: "The lines which follow are from one of Kentucky's most gifted daughters of song. Upon gentler themes the tones of her lyre have oft been heard to breathe their music. To sing to the warrior, its cords have ne'er been strung till now; the tragic death, and last eloquent words of the gallant Crittenden, have caused this tribute to his memory." This poem has been republished many times and in various forms. During the Spanish-American war in 1898 it was often seen in print as being typical of the courage of the soldiers of this country.

Bibliography. Lopez's Expeditions to Cuba, by A. C. Quisenberry (Louisville, 1906); Kentuckians in History and Literature, by J. W. Townsend (New York, 1907).


[From The Maysville Flag]

Ah! tyrants, forge your chains at will—
Nay! gall this flesh of mine:
Yet, thought is free, unfettered still,
And will not yield to thine!
Take, take the life that Heaven gave,
And let my heart's blood stain thy sod;
But know ye not Kentucky's brave
[Pg 239] Will kneel to none but God!
You've quenched fair freedom's sunny light,
Her music tones have stilled,
And with a deep and darkened blight,
The trusting heart has filled!
Then do you think that I will kneel
Where such as you have trod?
Nay! point your cold and threatening steel—
I'll kneel to none but God!
As summer breezes lightly rest
Upon a quiet river,
And gently on its sleeping breast
The moonbeams softly quiver—
Sweet thoughts of home light up my brow
When goaded with the rod;
Yet, these cannot unman me now—
I'll kneel to none but God!
And tho' a sad and mournful tone
Is coldly sweeping by;
And dreams of bliss forever flown
Have dimmed with tears mine eye—
Yet, mine's a heart unyielding still—
Heap on my breast the clod;
I'll kneel to none but God!
My soaring spirit scorns thy will—


Reuben Thomas Durrett, founder of the Filson Club and editor of its publications, was born near Eminence, Kentucky, January 22, 1824. He was graduated from Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, in 1849. The following year he began the practice of law at Louisville, and for the next thirty years he was one of the leaders of the Louisville bar. He was editor of the Louisville Courier[Pg 240] from 1857 to 1859, and throughout his long life he has been a contributor of historical essays to the Louisville press. Colonel Durrett was imprisoned for his Southern sympathies during the Civil War, and for this reason he saw little service. In 1871 he founded the Public Library of Louisville; and in 1884 he organized the now well-known Filson Club, which meets monthly in his magnificent library—the greatest collection of Kentuckiana in the world. While his library has never been catalogued, he must possess at least thirty thousand books, pamphlets, manuscripts, and newspaper files. Col. Theodore Roosevelt, Dr. Robert M. McElroy, and many other historical investigators have made important "finds" in Colonel Durrett's library. He has one of the six extant copies of the first edition of John Filson's History of Kentucke; and he has the copy of Dean Swift's Gulliver's Travels, which Neely, the pioneer, read to Daniel Boone on Lulbegrub Creek, near Winchester, Kentucky, in 1770, as they sat around the evening camp fire. The Filson club was founded to increase the interest then taken in historical subjects in Kentucky, and to issue an annual publication. That this purpose has been well carried out may be seen by the twenty-six handsome and valuable monographs which have appeared.[12] The Club's first book was Colonel[Pg 241] Durrett's The Life and Writings of John Filson, the first historian of Kentucky (Louisville, 1884). This work brought Filson into world-wide notice and revived an interest in his precious little history. An Historical Sketch of St. Paul's Church, Louisville (Louisville, 1889); The Centenary of Kentucky (Louisville, 1892); The Centenary of Louisville (Louisville, 1893); Bryant's Station (Louisville, 1897); and Traditions of the Earliest Visits of Foreigners to North America (Louisville, 1908), all of which are Filson Club publications, comprise Colonel Durrett's work in book form. This distinguished gentleman and writer resides at Louisville, where he keeps the open door for any who would come and partake of the wisdom of himself and of his books.

Bibliography. Memorial History of Louisville, by J. S. Johnston (Chicago, 1896); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1909, v. iv).


[From The Centenary of Louisville (Louisville, Kentucky, 1893)]

In the year 1808, while digging the foundation of the great flouring mill of the Tarascons in that part of Louisville known as Shippingport, it became necessary to remove a large sycamore tree, the trunk of which was six feet in diameter, and the roots of which penetrated the earth for forty feet around. Under the center of the trunk of this tree was found an iron hatchet, which was so guarded by the base and roots that no human hand could[Pg 242] have placed it there after the tree grew. It must have occupied the spot where it was found when the tree began to grow. The hatchet was made by bending a flat bar of iron around a cylinder until the two ends met, and then welding them together and hammering them to a cutting edge, leaving a round hole at the bend for a handle. The annulations of this tree were two hundred in number, thus showing it to be two hundred years old according to the then mode of computation. Here was a find which proved to be a never-ending puzzle to the early scientists of the Falls of the Ohio. The annulations of this tree made it two hundred years old, and so fixed the date earlier than any white man or user of iron was known to have been at the falls. One thought that Moscoso, the successor of De Soto, in his wanderings up the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, might have entered the Ohio and left the hatchet there in 1542; another, that it might have come from the Spaniards who settled St. Augustine in 1565; another, that the Spaniards who went up the Ohio in 1669 in search of silver might have left it where it was found; and another, that Marquette, when he discovered the Upper Mississippi in 1673, or La Salle, when he sailed down to its mouth in 1682, might have given the hatchet to an Indian, who left it at the Falls. But from these reasonable conjectures their learning and imagination soon led these savants into the wildest theories and conjectures. One thought that the Northmen, whom the Sagas of Sturleson made discoverers of America in the eleventh century, had brought the hatchet to this country; another, that Prince Madoc, who left a principality in Wales in the twelfth century for a home in the western wilderness, might have brought it here; and another, that it might have been brought here by those ancient Europeans whom Diodorus and Pausanius and other classical writers assure us were in communication with this country in ancient times. One of these learned ethnologists finally went so far as to advance the theory of the Egyptian priests, as related by Plato, that the autochthons of our race brought it here before the Island of Atlantis, lying between Europe and America, went down in the ocean and cut off all further communication between the continents.

This hatchet, however, really furnished no occasion for such[Pg 243] strained conjectures and wild speculations. If the sycamore under which it was found was two hundred years old, as indicated by its annulations, it must have begun to grow about the time that Jamestown in Virginia and Quebec in Canada were founded. It would have been no unreasonable act for an Indian or white man to have brought this hatchet from the English on the James, or from the French on the St. Lawrence, to the Falls of the Ohio in 1608, just two hundred years before it was discovered by removing the tree that grew over it. The known habit of the sycamore, however, to make more than one annulation in years particularly favorable to growth suggests that two hundred annulations do not necessarily mean that many years. If we allow about fifty per cent of the life of the tree to have been during years exceptionally favorable to its growth, and assign double annulations to these favorable years, we shall have this tree to have made its two hundred annulations in about one hundred and thirty-nine years, and to have sprung from its seed and to have begun its growth about the year 1669 or 1670, when La Salle, the great French explorer, is believed to have been at the Falls of the Ohio. We have no account of any one at the Falls in 1608, or about this time, to support the conjecture that it might have come from Jamestown or Quebec; but we have La Salle at this place in 1669 or 1670, and it is not unreasonable that he should have left it here at that time. In this sense the old rusty hatchet, which is fortunately preserved, becomes interesting to us all for its connection with the discovery of Louisville. It is a souvenir of the first white man who ever saw the Falls of the Ohio. It is a memento of Robert Cavalier de La Salle, the discoverer of the site of the city of Louisville.

[Pg 244]


Richard Henry Collins, whom Mr. James Lane Allen has happily christened "the Kentucky Froissart," was born at Maysville, Kentucky, May 4, 1824, over the office of The Eagle. He was the son of Lewis Collins (1797-1870), who published a history of Kentucky in 1847. Richard H. Collins was a Cincinnati lawyer for eleven years, but he lived many years at Maysville, where he edited the old Eagle, which his father had made famous. In 1861 he founded the Danville Review; and in 1874 he published a "revised, enlarged four-fold, and brought down to the year 1874" edition, in two enormous volumes, of his father's history of Kentucky. Unquestionably this is a work of tremendous importance, the most magnificent and elaborate history of this or any other State yet compiled. Traveling the whole State over, obtaining contributions from each town's ablest writer, and then building them upon his father's fine foundation, Collins was able to publish an almost invaluable work. To-day his history of Kentucky, though it certainly contains many errors of various kinds and degrees, is the greatest mine of our State's history which all must explore if they would be informed of our people's past. Dean Shaler and all later Kentucky historical writers have taken pleasure in paying tribute to his work. The one mistake that Collins made, which might have been easily avoided, was to put his manuscripts together in such a manner that the authorship of the various papers cannot be determined; but in this he followed his father's methods; and for this reason the writer has been compelled to reproduce the prefaces of both books, rather than portions of the actual text, for fear he may use matter prepared by a contributor. Collins practiced law in different Kentucky towns, wrote for newspapers and magazines, and spent a very busy and rather active life. He died at the home of his[Pg 245] daughter at Maryville, Missouri, on New Year's Day of 1888.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by Z. F. Smith (Louisville, 1892); The Blue Grass Region of Kentucky, by James Lane Allen (New York, 1892).


[From History of Kentucky (Covington, Kentucky, 1882, v. ii)]

Twenty-seven years, 1847 to 1874, have elapsed since Collins's History of Kentucky quietly and modestly claimed recognition among the standard local histories in the great American republic. That has been an eventful period. Death, too, has been busy with the names in the Preface above—has claimed alike the author and compiler, Judge Lewis Collins, and about one hundred and fifty more of the honored and substantial names who contributed information or other aid towards preserving what was then unwritten of the history of the State. The author of the present edition (now nearly fifty years of age) is the youngest of the forty-two contributors who are still living; while several of them are over eighty and one is over ninety-two years of age. Time has dealt gently with them; fame has followed some, and fortune others; a few have achieved both fame and fortune, while a smaller few lay claim to neither.

It is not often, as in this case, that the mantle of duty as a state-historian falls from the father to the son's shoulders. It has been faithfully and conscientiously worn; how well and ably, let the disinterested and unprejudiced judge.

The present edition had its origin in this: When Judge Collins died, the Legislature of Kentucky was in session. As its testimonial and appreciation of his services and character, this resolution was unanimously adopted, and on March 21, 1870, approved by Gov. Stevenson:

"Resolved by the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky:

"That we have heard with deep regret of the death of Judge Lewis Collins, of Maysville, Kentucky, which has occurred since the meeting of this General Assembly. He was a native Kentuckian[Pg 246] of great purity of character and enlarged public spirit; associated for half a century with the press of the State, which he adorned with his patriotism, his elevated morals, and his enlightened judgment. He was the author of a History of Kentucky, evidencing extended research, and which embodies in a permanent form the history of each county in the State, and the lives of its distinguished citizens, and is an invaluable contribution to the literature and historical knowledge of the State. His name being thus perpetually identified with that of his native State, this General Assembly, from a sense of duty and regard for his memory, expresses this testimonial of its appreciation of his irreproachable character and valued services."

This touching, and tender, and noble tribute to the departed author and editor, was but the culmination of a sympathy broader than the State, for it was echoed and sent back by many citizens from a distance. He had lived to some purpose. It was no small comfort to his family, to know that their bereavement was regarded as a public bereavement; and that his name and works would live on, and be green in the memory of the good people of Kentucky—the place of his birth, the home of his manhood, the scene of his life's labors, his grave. In a spontaneous tribute of praise and sympathy, the entire newspaper press of the State, and many in other States, announced his decease.

That action of the State, and those generous outpourings of sympathy and regard, started fresh inquiries for the work that had made him best known—Collins's History of Kentucky. It had been out of print for more than twenty years! It was known that I had been associated with my father as an editor, and then his successor, and had assisted him with his History. Hence, many applications and inquiries for the book were made to me; always with the suggestion that I ought to prepare a new edition, enlarged, and bring down to the present the history of the State. It was an important undertaking—as delicate as important. I shrank from the great responsibility, and declined. But the urgency continued, for the necessity of a State history was felt. The great State of Kentucky, the mother of statesmen and heroes, the advance guard of civilization west of the great Appalachian[Pg 247] chain, had no published History of the last twenty-six years; and no History at all in book form, now accessible to more than a few thousand of the intelligent minds among her million-and-a-third of inhabitants. The duty of preparing this History sought me, and not I it. It has been a task of tremendous labor, extending through the long weary months of nearly four years. But it has been a sweet and a proud task, and the destiny that seemed driving me on is almost fulfilled. I wish I could know the verdict of the future upon my labors, but that is impossible. The carping and noisy fault-finding of the dissatisfied and ungenerous few are far from being pleasant; but the consciousness of duty done, with an honest heart, and the praise of the liberal ones who will appreciate the work, will be a noble and a proud satisfaction, and a joy ceasing only with my life.

[Then follow three pages of names of persons whom he thanks for assistance.]


Mrs. Annie Chambers Ketchum, poet, naturalist, and novelist, was born near Georgetown, Kentucky, November 8, 1824, the daughter of Benjamin Stuart Chambers, founder of Cardome Academy; her mother was a member of the famous Bradford family of journalists. Miss Chambers was graduated from Georgetown Female College with the M. A. degree. Her first husband was William Bradford, whom she married in 1844, and from whom she was subsequently divorced. After her separation from her husband, she went to Memphis, Tennessee, and opened a school for girls, which she conducted for several years. In 1858 she was married to Leonidas Ketchum, a Tennessean, who was mortally wounded at the battle of Shiloh in 1863. After her husband's death, Mrs. Ketchum returned to Kentucky and conducted a school at Georgetown for three years, but, in 1866, she returned to Memphis, where she again taught for a number[Pg 248] of years. Mrs. Ketchum spent the winter of 1875 at Paris, France, pursuing her literary work, and on May 24, 1876, she entered upon the novitiate in a convent there. She afterwards returned to America and her last years were spent in Kentucky. Mrs. Ketchum died in 1904. Her first literary work to attract attention was a novel, entitled Nellie Bracken (Philadelphia, 1855). From 1859 to 1861 Mrs. Ketchum was editor of The Lotus, a monthly magazine published at Memphis. Benny: A Christmas Ballad (New York, 1869) was the first of her poems to attract any considerable attention; and her best known poem, Semper Fidelis, originally published in Harper's Magazine for October, 1873, is a long, leisurely thing that makes one wonder at its once wide popularity. All of her poems Mrs. Ketchum brought together in Lotus Flowers (New York, 1878). Lotus was her shibboleth, and she never missed an opportunity to make use of it. She made many translations from Latin, German, and French writers, her finest work in this field being Marcella, a Russian Idyl (New York, 1878). The Teacher's Empire (1886) was a collection of educational essays contributed to various journals. Mrs. Ketchum's Botany for Academies and Colleges (Philadelphia, 1887), was a text-book in many institutions for several years subsequent to its publication.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1887, v. iii); B. O. Gaines's History of Scott County, Kentucky (1905, v. ii).


[From The Southern Poems of the War, edited by Emily V. Mason (Baltimore, 1867)]

Dreams of a stately land,
Where roses and lotus open to the sun,
Where green ravine and misty mountains stand,
[Pg 249] By lordly valor won.
Dreams of the earnest-browed
And eagle-eyed, who late with banners bright,
Rode forth in knightly errantry, to do
Devoir for God and right.
Shoulder to shoulder, see
The crowning columns file through pass and glen!
Hear the shrill bugle! List the rolling drum,
Mustering the gallant men!
Resolute, year by year,
They keep at bay the cohorts of the world;
Hemmed in, yet trusting in the Lord of Hosts,
The cross is still unfurled.
Patient, heroic, true,
And counting tens where hundreds stood at first;
Dauntless for truth, they dare the sabre's edge,
The bombshell's deadly burst.
While we, with hearts made brave
By their proud manhood, work, and watch, and pray,
Till, conquering fate, we greet with smiles and tears
The conquering ranks of grey!
Oh, God of dreams and sleep,
Dreamless they sleep—'tis we, the sleepless, dream,
Defend us while our vigil dark we keep,
Which knows no morning beam!
Bloom, gentle spring-tide flowers—
Sing, gentle winds, above each holy grave,
While we, the women of a desolate land,
Weep for the true and brave.

Memphis, Tennessee.

[Pg 250]


Francis Henry Underwood, "the editor who was never the editor" of The Atlantic Monthly, though he was indeed the projector and first associate editor of that famous magazine, was born at Enfield, Massachusetts, January 12, 1825, the son of Roswell Underwood. He spent the year of 1843-1844 at Amherst College, and in the summer of 1844 he came out to Kentucky and settled at Bowling Green as a school teacher. Underwood read law at Bowling Green and was admitted to the bar of that town in 1847. On May 18, 1848, he was married to Louisa Maria Wood, of Taylorsville, Kentucky, to whom he afterwards dedicated his Kentucky novel. While in Kentucky Underwood wrote verses which he submitted to N. P. Willis, who was then at Washington. The celebrated critic wrote him: "Your poetry is as good as Byron's was at the same stage of progress—correct, and evidently inspired, and capable of expansion into stuff for fame." None of it, however, has come down to us. Underwood's intense hatred of slavery caused him to quit Kentucky, in 1850, after having lived for six years in this State, and to return to Massachusetts, where he was admitted to the bar of Northampton. He enlisted in the Free-soil movement with heart and soul. In 1852 he was clerk of the Massachusetts Senate, which position he left to become literary adviser for the then leading publishers of New England, Phillips, Sampson and Company. In 1853 Underwood conceived the idea of a Free-soil literary magazine, but a publisher's failure delayed its appearance. In November, 1857, however, the first issue of The Atlantic Monthly appeared, Dr. Holmes having christened the "baby," with James Russell Lowell as editor-in-chief, and Underwood as assistant editor. Lowell and Underwood were great friends and they worked together with pleasure and harmony. For two years they were the editors, when the breaking up of the firm of Phillips,[Pg 251] Sampson and Company, and the passing of the periodical into the hands of Ticknor and Fields, caused Underwood to resign. From 1859 to 1870 he was clerk of the Superior Criminal Court of Boston; and from 1861 to 1875 he was a member of the Boston School Committee. Underwood's first three works were a Handbook of English Literature (Boston, 1871); Handbook of American Literature (Boston, 1872); and Cloud Pictures (Boston, 1872), a group of musical stories. Then came his Kentucky novel, entitled Lord of Himself (Boston, 1874), which was really a series of pictures of life at Bowling Green in 1844. This tale was well received by the Kentucky press and public, the background and characters were declared realistic, and the author's effort to make something pathetic out of the old system of slavery was smiled at and dismissed in the general pleasure his story gave. In his imaginary Kentucky county of Barry, Underwood had a merry time rehabilitating the past. The character of Arthur Howard is the author himself. Lord of Himself is a work of high merit, and it does not deserve the oblivion into which it has fallen. In 1880 Underwood's second novel, Man Proposes, was published, together with his The True Story of Exodus. Two years later his biographies of Longfellow and Lowell were issued; and in 1883 his study of Whittier was published. In 1885 President Cleveland named Underwood United States Consul at Glasgow; and three years later the University of Glasgow granted him LL.D. During Cleveland's second administration Underwood was consul at Edinburgh. While in Scotland he wrote his last two novels, called Quabbin (Boston, 1892), and Dr. Gray's Quest. In Quabbin he described his native town of Enfield in much the same manner that he had years before written of Bowling Green, Kentucky. Underwood died at Edinburgh, August 8, 1894.

Bibliography. Biographical Catalogue of Amherst College; The Author of "Quabbin," by J. T. Trowbridge (Atlantic Monthly,[Pg 252] January, 1895); The Editor who was Never the Editor, by Bliss Perry (Atlantic Monthly, November, 1907). Mr. Perry's paper is especially notable for the great number of letters reproduced which Underwood received from the celebrities of his time.


[From Lord of Himself (Boston, 1874)]

It was at this juncture that the youth of many locks and ample Byronic shirt collar appeared on the scene. Aloysius Pittsinger was his name. He was a consolation. His very name, Aloysius, had a sweet gurgle in the sound, resembling the anticipatory and involuntary noises from children's mouths at the sight of sugar lollipops. He was a clerk in Mr. Goldstein's store. There he dispensed tobacco, both fine-cut and plug, assorted nails, New Orleans sugar, Rio coffee, Porto Rico molasses, Gloucester mackerel, together with foreign cloths and homespun jeans, and all the gimcracks which little negroes coveted and the swarms of summer flies had spared.

The appearance of Aloysius happened in this wise. Mr. Fenton was an early riser, but was loath to go to his shop without his breakfast. On the fateful morning he had come down rather earlier than usual. After due search and discussion, it was announced to him that there was nothing at once appetizing and substantial in the house that could, within the desired period, be got ready for the table; and his wife made bold to ask if in this emergency he wouldn't go out and get something. To a hungry man, in the faint interval after a "nipper" and before a solid bit, such a proposition is an unpleasant surprise. But, after devoting the cook and the household generally to immediate pains and inconveniences, and to something more hereafter, Mr. Fenton put on his slouched hat and started out. He mused also.

If I were ambitious of the fame of the great American novelist, or were contending for the fifty thousand dollar prize offered by the publishers of the Metropolitan Album, and hoped to have my thrilling descriptions read by its subscribing army of three hundred and fifty-one thousand chambermaids, I might paint the current of his swift thought thus:

[Pg 253]

"The air bites shrewdly. Ha, by the mass! Shall I to the abattoir and ask the slayer of oxen for a steak? or a chop from the loin of sheep, a bell-wether of Kentucky's finest flock—Kentucky, state renowned for dainty mutton? Or does the slayer of oxen yet sleep, supinely stertorous, heavy with the lingering fumes of the mighty Bourbon? Perchance he has no steak, no chop!—all gone to feed an insatiable people! Bethink me. Ay—and the abattoir is far, though its perfume is nigh; it is thrice a hundred yards from hence. I will go to the house of the Israelite, Goldstein, and get a fish—a fish dear to losel Yankees, and not scorned by the sons of the sun-land either. 'Tis well. I will make the trial. Haply I shall find that the young man, Pittsinger, whose prænomen is Aloysius, has arisen, and is even now combing his ambrosial locks."

What he did think was something like this:

"It's doggon cold this mornin'. I wonder whether that derned old drunken Bill Stone's got ary bit of fresh meat—and if he's up yet. I don't b'lieve it, for he was drunk's an owl last night at old Red Eye. Besides, it's fer to the slaughter-house. Le's see. I might get a mackerel at Goldstein's. I'll do it. B'iled a little, to take the salt out, and then het with cream, it ain't bad, by a derned sight."

He walked out to the square, occasionally blowing his cold fingers. The shutters were not taken down from Goldstein's front windows, but Mr. Fenton knew that the clerk slept in a little room in a ruinous lean-to back of the store, and he rattled the door to call him. There was no answer, nor sound of any one stirring, and he rattled again. His powerful shake made the square resound. He called, endeavoring to throw his voice through the key-hole, "Aloysius, ain't you up yit? I want a mackerel."

The silence was aggravating, and there were internal qualms that made Fenton doubly impatient.

"Aloysius, you lazy bones! Do you hear? I want a mackerel for breakfast. You're thest the no-countest boy I ever see! If 'twan't for your father, you'd thest starve."

Fenton sadly meditated, and was about to give it up, when he heard a voice within, saying, "Never too late, Mr. Fenton. You shall have your mackerel. You needn't wait. As soon as I get my clothes on I'll tote you over one."

[Pg 254]


[From the same]

"The hardest strain upon the republic is yet to come," said Mr. Pierrepont. "God only knows how the slavery question is to be settled; but no change in policy will be adopted without a severe struggle. If the South is worsted, it will have the terrible problem of the status of the negroes to solve, and it will be a tumultuous time for a generation. The danger to the North in the event of success, or of defeat either, will arise from its wealth. The accumulations at the commercial centres are to make them enormously rich. Money is a power, and never a quiescent one. Your rich men will put themselves into office, or they will send their paid attorneys to legislate for them. They will so touch the subtle springs of finance as to make every affair of state serve their personal advantage. They will make corruption honorable, and bribery a fine art. It is now a mark of decency and a badge of distinction for a public man to be poor. Everyone knows that a public man can't be rich honestly; but you will live to see congressmen going to the capital carrying travelling-bags, and returning home with wagon loads of trunks, and with stocks and bonds that will enable them to snap their fingers at constituents."

"It is the old story of republics," said Mr. Howard. "They are founded by valor, reared by industry, with frugality and equal laws. Wealth follows, then corruption, then the public conscience is debauched, faith is lost, and justice thrust out. Then the general rottenness is shaken by the coming of a new Cæsar, and an empire is welcomed because liberty had already been lost, and anything is better than anarchy. However, let us hope this is far away."

[Pg 255]


Stephen Collins Foster, the celebrated song writer, was born at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, July 4, 1826. At the age of fifteen years he entered Jefferson College, at Cannonsburg, Pennsylvania, but music had set its seal upon him and he soon returned to Pittsburgh to pursue it. The next few years were almost entirely devoted to his musical studies, though he had a living to make. The year of 1842 found Foster clerking in a Cincinnati store; and during this time his first song, Open Thy Lattice, Love, was published at Baltimore. Uncle Ned, and O Susannah! followed fast upon his first effort, and the three launched him upon his career. He relinquished his business cares, and surrendered his life to song. In 1850 Foster married Jane McDowell of Pittsburgh, and they lived at New York City for a short time before settling at Pittsburgh. His Camptown Races, and My Old Kentucky Home, Goodnight, appeared in 1850. It is surely a regrettable fact that the most famous Kentucky song was not written by a Kentucky hand. Foster's only child, Mrs. Marion Foster Welsh, of Pittsburgh, has recently repudiated the ancient tale that is told of the origin of My Old Kentucky Home, but as she declined to furnish the real history of the song, saying she would make it known at the proper time, nothing better than the often repeated story can be told here. Foster was visiting his kinsman, Judge John Rowan, at his home, "Federal Hill," near Bardstown, Kentucky, and on this typical Southern plantation, with its negroes and their cabins, My Old Kentucky Home was written. The story is usually elaborated, but as it has been set aside by the author's daughter, further comment is not worth while. It is enough to know that it was written in Kentucky. Foster went to New York City in 1860, and the same year Old Black Joe appeared. Old Folks at Home, Nelly was a Lady, Nelly Bly, Massa's in the Cold,[Pg 256] Cold Ground, Old Dog Tray, Don't Bet Your Money on the Shanghai, We Are Coming, Father Abraham, and dozens of other songs have kept Foster's fame green. His beautiful serenade, Come Where My Love Lies Dreaming, is his highest note in genuine scientific music. Foster died at New York, January 13, 1864, and he was buried in Allegheny cemetery, Pittsburgh. In 1906 the Kentucky home-comers never seemed to tire of My Old Kentucky Home, and a fitting memorial was unveiled at Louisville by Foster's daughter in honor of the song's maker. It is known and sung in the remotest corners of the world. Mr. James Lane Allen's fine tribute to the poet's memory may be found in The Bride of the Mistletoe:

"More than half a century ago the one starved genius of the Shield [Kentucky], a writer of songs, looked out upon the summer picture of this land, its meadows and ripening corn tops; and as one presses out the spirit of an entire vineyard when he bursts a solitary grape upon his tongue, he, the song writer, drained drop by drop the wine of that scene into the notes of a single melody. The nation now knows his song, the world knows it—the only music that has ever captured the joy and peace of American home life—embodying the very soul of it in the clear amber of sound."

Bibliography. Atlantic Monthly (November, 1867); Current Literature (September, 1901). Strangely enough no formal biography of Foster has been written.


[From Stephen Collins Foster Statue (Louisville, Kentucky, 1906, a pamphlet)]

The sun shines bright in the old Kentucky home,
'Tis summer, the darkies are gay;
The corn-top's ripe and the meadow's in the bloom,
While the birds make music all the day;
The young folks roll on the little cabin floor,
All merry, all happy, and bright,
By'n-by hard times comes a-knocking at the door,
[Pg 257] Then my old Kentucky home, good-night!
Weep no more, my lady, O weep no more to-day!
We will sing one song for the old Kentucky home,
For the old Kentucky home far away.
They hunt no more for the 'possum and the coon,
On the meadow, the hill, and the shore;
They sing no more by the glimmer of the moon,
On the bench by the old cabin door;
The day goes by, like a shadow o'er the heart,
With sorrow, where all was delight;
The time has come when the darkies have to part,
Then my old Kentucky home, good-night!
Weep no more, my lady, O weep no more to-day!
We will sing one song for the old Kentucky home,
For the old Kentucky home far away.
The head must bow and the back will have to bend,
Wherever the darkey may go;
A few more days and the trouble all will end
In the field where the sugar-cane grows;
A few more days for to tote the weary load—
No matter, 'twill never be light;
A few more days till we totter on the road,
Then my old Kentucky home, good-night!
Weep no more, my lady, O weep no more to-day!
We will sing one song for the old Kentucky home,
For the old Kentucky home far away.
[Pg 258]


Zachariah Frederick Smith, the Kentucky historian, was born near Eminence, Kentucky, January 7, 1827. He was educated at Bacon College, Harrodsburg, Kentucky. During the Civil War he was president of Henry College at New Castle, Kentucky. From 1867 to 1871 he was superintendent of public instruction in Kentucky. Professor Smith was subsequently interested in various enterprises, and for four years he was connected with the publishing firm of D. Appleton and Company. For more than fifty years he was a curator of Transylvania University. His History of Kentucky (Louisville, 1885; 1892), is the only exhaustive and readable history of the Commonwealth from the beginnings down to the date of its publication. In a sense it is the chronicles of the Collinses transformed from the encyclopedic to the continuous narrative form. Professor Smith's other works are: A School History of Kentucky (Louisville, 1889); Youth's History of Kentucky (Louisville, 1898); The Mother of Henry Clay (Louisville, 1899); and The Battle of New Orleans (Louisville, 1904). He spent the final years of his life upon The History of the Reformation of the 19th Century, Inaugurated, Advocated, and Directed by Barton W. Stone, of Kentucky: 1800-1832, which was almost ready for publication when he died. In this work Professor Smith set forth that Barton W. Stone, and not Alexander Campbell, was the founder of the Christian ("Campbellite") so-called "reformation" in this State, and that its adherents are "Stoneites," not "Campbellites," as they are called by the profane. Professor Smith died at Louisville, Kentucky, July 4, 1911, but he was buried at Eminence.

Bibliography. Kentucky in the Nation's History, by R. M. McElroy (New York, 1909); The Register (Frankfort, Kentucky, September, 1911).

[Pg 259]


[From The History of Kentucky (Louisville, 1892)]

It is probable Dr. Thomas Walker, of Virginia, was the first physician who ever visited Kentucky. In 1745 he came and negotiated treaties with the Indian tribes for the establishment of a colony, which was announced in Washington's journal (1754) as Walker's settlement on the Cumberland, accompanied by a map, dated 1750. Some time just before 1770, Dr. John Connolly, of Pittsburgh, visited the Falls of the Ohio, and three years later, in company with Captain Thomas Bullitt, patented the land on which Louisville now stands. But little is known of the professional performances of either Walker or Connolly, except the fact that they were both men of superior intelligence, and of far more than average cultivation. They were both known as enterprising business men rather than great practitioners of medicine. In a History of the Medical Literature of Kentucky, Dr. Lunsford P. Yandell (the elder) says: "The first surgical operation ever performed in Kentucky by a white man occurred in 1767." Colonel James Smith, in that year, accompanied by his black servant, Jamie, traveled from the mouth of the Tennessee river across the country to Carolina, now Tennessee. On their way, Colonel Smith stepped upon a projecting fragment of cane, which pierced his foot, and was broken off level with the skin. Swelling quickly came on, causing the flesh to rise above the end of the cane. Having no other instruments than a knife, a moccasin awl, and a pair of bullet-molds, the colonel directed his servant to seize the piece of cane with the bullet-molds, while he raised the skin with the awl and cut the flesh away from around the piece of cane, and, with the assistance of Jamie, the foreign body was drawn out. Colonel Smith then treated the wound with the bruised bark from the root of a lind tree, and subsequently by poultices made of the same material, using the mosses of the old logs in the forest, which he secured with strips of elm bark, as a dressing.

Dr. Frederick Ridgely, a favorite pupil of Dr. Rush, was sent from Philadelphia early in 1779, as a surgeon to a vessel sailing with letters of marque and reprisal off the coast of Virginia. This[Pg 260] vessel was chased into the Chesapeake Bay by a British man-of-war. As the ship's colors were struck to the enemy, Dr. Ridgely leaped overboard, and narrowly escaped capture by swimming two miles to the shore. He was at once thereafter appointed an officer in the medical department of the Colonial army. A few months later, he resigned his commission, and settled, in 1790, at Lexington, where he speedily attained a leading position as a master of the healing art. From Lexington he was frequently called, in the capacity of surgeon, to accompany militia in their expeditions against the Indians. He was appointed surgeon-general to the army of "Mad Anthony Wayne," returning finally to Lexington, where he took part in the organization of the first medical college established in the West. Dr. Ridgely was a frequent contributor to the American Medical Repertory, published at Philadelphia. He was the intimate friend of Dr. Samuel Brown, also of Lexington. At the organization of the medical department of Transylvania University, in 1799, Brown and Ridgely were the first professors. Ridgely, in that year, delivered a course of lectures to a small class, and, as the organization of the faculty had not been completed, no further attempts at teaching were made. Dr. Samuel Brown, like his colleague, Ridgely, was a surgeon of great ability and large experience. These two gentlemen added greatly to the growth and popularity of Lexington by their renown as surgeons. They attracted patients from the remote settlements on the frontier, and were both frequent contributors to the medical literature of that time. The cases reported by these gentlemen were numerous, interesting, carefully observed, and ably reported. Dr. Brown was a student at the University of Edinburgh with Hosack, Davidge, Ephraim McDowell, and Brockenborough, of Virginia. Hosack became famous as a professor in the College of Physicians and Surgeons, at New York; Davidge laid the foundation of the University of Maryland; Brown was one of the first professors in Transylvania University, at Lexington, while McDowell achieved immortal fame in surgery as the father of ovariotomy. Strong rivalry in the practice of medicine at Lexington, between Brown and Ridgely, and Fishback and Pindell, had much to do with the difficulties attending the efforts of the two former to establish the[Pg 261] medical school. In 1798, Jenner made public his great discovery of the protective power of vaccination. Dr. Brown, of Lexington, was his first imitator on this continent. Within three years from the date of Jenner's first publication, and before the experiment had been tried elsewhere in this country, Brown had already vaccinated successfully more than five hundred people at Lexington.


John Albert Broadus, the most distinguished clergyman and writer Kentucky Baptists have produced, was born near Culpepper, Virginia, January 24, 1827. At the age of sixteen years Broadus united with the Baptist church; and he shortly afterwards decided to study for the ministry of his church. He taught school for a time before going to the University of Virginia, in 1846, and he was graduated four years later with the M.A. degree. While at the University Broadus was greatly impressed by Professors Gessner Harrison, Wm. H. McGuffey, and E. H. Courtenay. In 1851 Broadus declined a professorship in Georgetown College, Georgetown, Kentucky, in order to become assistant instructor of ancient languages in his alma mater and pastor of the Charlottesville Baptist church. In 1857 it was decided to establish the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary at Greenville, South Carolina, and Broadus, James P. Boyce, Basil Manly, Jr., William Williams, and E. T. Winkler, were the committee on establishment. Boyce and Manly urged the curriculum system, but Broadus advocated the elective system so earnestly that he completely won them over. "So, as Mr. Jefferson had drawn a new American university, Mr. Broadus drew a new American seminary." The Seminary opened in 1859 with the members of the committee, with the exception of Williams, as the professors. Boyce[Pg 262] was elected president, and Broadus occupied the chair of New Testament Interpretation and Homiletics. Twenty-six students greeted the faculty; and all were soon hard at work. After a few years, however, the Civil War came and the Seminary shortly suspended. During the war Dr. Broadus was a chaplain in the Confederate armies. At the close of the war work in the Seminary was resumed with seven students enrolled, Dr. Broadus having but one student in homiletics, and he was blind! The lectures he prepared for this blind brother were the basis of the work that made him famous, The Preparation and Delivery of Sermons (Philadelphia, 1870), which is at the present time the finest thing on the subject, a text-book in nearly every theological school in Christendom. Dr. Broadus declined chairs in Chicago and Brown universities, and the presidency of Vassar College, in order to remain with the Seminary, the darling of his dreams. In 1873 he read his notable paper in memory of Gessner Harrison at the University of Virginia; and the next year he joined Dr. Boyce in Kentucky in the effort that was then being made to remove the Seminary to Louisville. His lectures before the Newton Theological Seminary were published as The History of Preaching (New York, 1876). In 1877 the Seminary was removed to Louisville, Dr. Boyce remaining as president and Dr. Broadus as professor of homiletics. From the first the Seminary was a success, it now being the largest in the United States. In 1879 Dr. Broadus delivered his noted address upon Demosthenes before Richmond College, Virginia, which is regarded as one of the very finest efforts of his life. In Louisville he became the city's first citizen, honored and beloved by all classes. In 1886 Harvard conferred the degree of Doctor of Divinity upon him; and later in the same year one of the most important of his books appeared, Sermons and Addresses (Baltimore,[Pg 263] 1886). This was followed by his famous Commentary on Matthew (Philadelphia, 1887), which was begun during the darkest days of the Civil War, and is now considered the best commentary in English on that Gospel. Dr. Boyce died at Pau, France, in 1888, and Dr. Broadus succeeded him as president of the Seminary. In January, 1889, he delivered the Lyman Beecher lectures on Preaching at Yale; and some months later his Translation of and Notes to Chrysostom's Homilies (New York, 1889) appeared. In the spring of 1890 Dr. Broadus delivered three lectures before Johns Hopkins University, which were published as Jesus of Nazareth (New York, 1890). He spent the summer of 1892 in Louisville preparing his Memoir of James P. Boyce (New York, 1893); and A Harmony of the Gospels (New York, 1893), his final works. Dr. Broadus died at Louisville, Kentucky, March 16, 1895.

Bibliography. Life and Letters of John Albert Broadus, by A. T. Robertson (Philadelphia, 1900); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1909, v. ii).


[From Life and Letters of John A. Broadus, by A. T. Robertson (Philadelphia, 1901)]

We had four and a half hours at Oxford, and spent it with exceeding great pleasure, and most respectably heavy expense.

At University College we saw a memorial of Sir Wm. Jones, by Flaxman, which I am sure I shall never forget—worthy of Sir Wm. and worthy of Flaxman. At Magdalen College we saw the varied and beautiful grounds, with the Poet's Walk, where Addison loved to stroll. At New College we visited the famous and beautiful chapel. (New College is now five hundred years old.) These are the most remarkable of the nineteen colleges. You know they are entirely distinct establishments, as much as if a hundred miles apart, and that the University of Oxford is simply a general organization which gives degrees to the[Pg 264] men prepared by the different colleges. Then we spent one and a half hours at the famous Bodleian Library, the most valuable (British Museum has the largest number of books) in the world. Oh, the books, the books—the early and rare editions, the illuminated manuscripts of the Middle Ages, the autographs of famous persons, and the portraits, the portraits of hundreds of the earth's greatest ones. Happy students, fellows, professors, who have constant access to the Bodleian Library.


[From the same]

I was greatly delighted with Spurgeon, especially with his conduct of public worship. The congregational singing has often been described, and is as good as can well be conceived. Spurgeon is an excellent reader of Scripture, and remarkably impressive in reading hymns, and the prayers were quite what they ought to have been. The sermon was hardly up to his average in freshness, but was exceedingly well delivered, without affectation or apparent effort, but with singular earnestness, and directness. The whole thing—house, congregation, order, worship, preaching, was as nearly up to my ideal as I ever expect to see in this life. Of course Spurgeon has his faults and deficiencies, but he is a wonderful man. Then he preaches the real gospel, and God blesses him. After the services concluded, I went to a room in the rear to present my letter, and was cordially received. Somebody must tell Mrs. V—— that I "thought of her" repeatedly during the sermon, and "gave her love" to Spurgeon, and he said such a message encouraged him. (I made quite a little story of it, and the gentlemen in the room were apparently much interested, not to say amused.)

We went straight towards St. Paul's, where Liddon has been preaching every Sunday afternoon in September, and there would be difficulty in getting a good seat. We lunched at the Cathedral Hotel, hard by, and then stood three-quarters of an hour at the door of St. Paul's, waiting for it to open. Meantime a good crowd had collected behind us, and there was a tremendous rush when the door opened, to get chairs near the preaching stand. The crowd looked immense in the vast cathedral, and yet there[Pg 265] were not half as many as were quietly seated in Spurgeon's Tabernacle. There everybody could hear, and here, in the grand and beautiful show-place, Mr. Liddon was tearing his throat in the vain attempt to be heard by all. The grand choral service was all Chinese to me.


Mrs. Mary Jane Holmes, a family favorite for fifty years, was born at Brookfield, Massachusetts, April 5, 1828. She became a teacher at an early age, and at Allen's Hill, New York, on August 9, 1849, she was married to Daniel Holmes, a Yale man of the class of 1848, who had been teaching the year between his graduation and marriage at Versailles, Kentucky. Immediately after the ceremony he and his bride started to Kentucky, where Mrs. Holmes joined her husband in teaching. In 1850 they gave up the school at Versailles, taking charge of the district school at Glen's Creek, near Versailles. Here they taught for two years, when Mr. Holmes decided to relinquish teaching for the practice of law, and they removed to Brockport, New York, their home henceforth. Mrs. Holmes returned to Kentucky in 1857, for a visit, and this, with the three years indicated above, included her Kentucky life. Having settled at Brockport, she began her career as a novelist. Her first and best known book, Tempest and Sunshine, or Life in Kentucky, was published in 1854. Mr. Middleton, one of the chief characters in this novel, was a rather close characterization of a Kentucky planter, Mr. Singleton, who resided some miles from Versailles; and his daughter, Sue Singleton, subsequently Mrs. Porter, always claimed, though facetiously, that she was the original of Tempest. It is now known, however, that Mrs. Holmes had not thought of her in delineating the character, and that the Singleton home is the only thing in the[Pg 266] book that is drawn from actual life with any detail whatever. In her Kentucky books that followed Tempest and Sunshine, she usually built an accurate background for characters that lived only in her imagination. Besides Tempest and Sunshine, Mrs. Holmes was the author of thirty-four books, published in the order given: The English Orphans; Homestead on the Hillside, a book of Kentucky stories; Lena Rivers, a Kentucky novel, superior to Tempest and Sunshine; Meadow Brook; Dora Deane; Cousin Maude; Marian Grey, a Kentucky story; Darkness and Daylight; Hugh Worthington, another Kentucky novel; The Cameron Pride; Rose Mather; Ethelyn's Mistake; Millbank; Edna Browning; West Lawn; Edith Lyle; Mildred; Daisy Thornton; Forrest House; Chateau D'Or; Madeline; Queenie Hetherton; Christmas Stories; Bessie's Fortune; Gretchen; Marguerite; Dr. Hathern's Daughters; Mrs. Hallam's Companion; Paul Ralston; The Tracy Diamonds; The Cromptons; The Merivale Banks; Rena's Experiment; and The Abandoned Farm. About two million copies of Mrs. Holmes's books have been sold by her authorized publishers; how many have been sold in pirated editions cannot, of course, be ascertained. Mrs. Holmes died at Brockport, New York, October 6, 1907.

Bibliography. Allibone's Dictionary of Authors (Philadelphia, 1897, v. ii); The Nation (October 10, 1907).


[From Lena Rivers (New York, 1856)]

And now Mr. Everett was daily expected. Anna, who had no fondness for books, greatly dreaded his arrival, thinking within herself how many pranks she'd play off upon him, provided 'Lena would lend a helping hand, which she much doubted. John Jr., too, who for a time, at least, was to be placed under Mr. Everett's instruction, felt in no wise eager for his arrival, fearing, as he told 'Lena that "between the 'old man' and the tutor, he would be kept a little too straight for a gentleman of his habits;" and it[Pg 267] was with no particular emotions of pleasure that he and Anna saw the stage stop before the gate one pleasant morning toward the middle of November. Running to one of the front windows, Carrie, 'Lena, and Anna watched their new teacher, each after her own fashion commenting upon his appearance.

"Ugh," exclaimed Anna, "what a green, boyish looking thing! I reckon nobody's going to be afraid of him."

"I say he's real handsome," said Carrie, who being thirteen years of age, had already, in her own mind, practiced many a little coquetry upon the stranger.

"I like him," was 'Lena's brief remark.

Mr. Everett was a pale, intellectual looking man, scarcely twenty years of age, and appearing still younger so that Anna was not wholly wrong when she called him boyish. Still there was in his large black eye a firmness and decision which bespoke the man strong within him, and which put to flight all of Anna's preconceived notions of rebellion. With the utmost composure he returned Mrs. Livingstone's greeting, and the proud lady half bit her lip with vexation as she saw how little he seemed awed by her presence.

Malcolm Everett was not one to acknowledge superiority where there was none, and though ever polite toward Mrs. Livingstone, there was something in his manner which forbade her treating him as aught save an equal. He was not to be trampled down, and for once in her life Mrs. Livingstone had found a person who would neither cringe to her nor flatter. The children were not presented to him until dinner time, when, with the air of a young desperado, John Jr. marched into the dining-room, eyeing his teacher askance, calculating his strength, and returning his greeting with a simple nod. Mr. Everett scanned him from head to foot, and then turned to Carrie half smiling at the great dignity which she assumed. With Lena and Anna he seemed better pleased, holding their hands and smiling down upon them through rows of teeth which Anna pronounced the whitest she had ever seen.

Mr. Livingstone was not at home, and when his mother appeared, Mrs. Livingstone did not think proper to introduce her. But if by this omission she thought to keep the old lady silent, she[Pg 268] was mistaken, for the moment Mrs. Nichols was seated, she commenced with, "Your name is Everett, I b'lieve?"

"Yes, ma'am," said he, bowing very gracefully toward her.

"Any kin to the governor what was?"

"No, ma'am, none whatever," and the white teeth became slightly visible for a moment, but soon disappeared.

"You are from Rockford, 'Lena tells me?"

"Yes, ma'am. Have you friends there?"

"Yes—or that is, Nancy Scovandyke's sister, Betsy Scovandyke that used to be, lives there. Maybe you know her. Her name is Bacon—Betsy Bacon. She's a widder and keeps boarders."

"Ah," said he, the teeth this time becoming wholly visible, "I've heard of Mrs. Bacon, but have not the honor of her acquaintance. You are from the east, I perceive."

"Law, now! how did you know that?" asked Mrs. Nichols, while Mr. Everett answered, "I guessed at it," with a peculiar emphasis on the word guessed, which led 'Lena to think he had used it purposely and not from habit.

Mr. Everett possessed in a remarkable degree the faculty of making those around him both respect and like him, and ere six weeks had passed, he had won the love of all his pupils. Even John Jr. was greatly improved, and Carrie seemed suddenly reawakened into a thirst for knowledge, deeming no task too long, and no amount of study too hard, if it won the commendation of the teacher. 'Lena, who committed to memory with great ease, and who consequently did not deserve so much credit for her always perfect lessons, seldom received a word of praise, while poor Anna, notoriously lazy when books were concerned, cried almost every day, because as she said, "Mr. Everett didn't like her as he did the rest, else why did he look at her so much, watching her all the while, and keeping her after school to get her lessons over, when he knew how she hated them."

Once Mrs. Livingstone ventured to remonstrate, telling him that Anna was very sensitive, and required altogether different treatment from Carrie. "She thinks you dislike her," said she, "and while she retains this impression, she will do nothing as far as learning is concerned; so if you do not like her, try and make her think you do!"

[Pg 269]

There was a peculiar look in Mr. Everett's dark eyes as he answered, "You may think it strange, Mrs. Livingstone, but of all my pupils I love Anna the best! I know I find more fault with her, and am, perhaps, more severe with her than with the rest, but it's because I would make her what I wish her to be. Pardon me, madam, but Anna does not possess the same amount of intellect with her cousin or sister, but by proper culture she will make a fine, intelligent woman."

Mrs. Livingstone hardly relished being told that one child was inferior to the other, but she could not well help herself—Mr. Everett would say what he pleased—and thus the conference ended. From that time Mr. Everett was exceedingly kind to Anna, wiping away the tears which invariably came when told that she must stay with him in the schoolroom after the rest were gone; then, instead of seating himself in rigid silence at a distance until her task was learned, he would sit by her side, occasionally smoothing her long curls and speaking encouragingly to her as she poured over some hard rule of grammar, or puzzled her brains with some difficult problem in Colburn. Ere long the result of all this became manifest. Anna grew fonder of her books, more ready to learn, and—more willing to be kept after school!

Ah, little did Mrs. Livingstone think what she was doing when she bade young Malcolm Everett make her warm-hearted, impulsive daughter think he liked her!


Mrs. Rosa Vertner Jeffrey, one of the most beautiful of Kentucky women, whose personal loveliness has caused some critics to forget she was a gifted poet, was born at Natchez, Mississippi, in 1828, the daughter of John Y. Griffith, a writer of considerable reputation in his day. Her mother died when she was but nine months old, and she was reared by her aunt. When Rosa was ten years of age her adopted parents removed to Lexington, Kentucky, where she was educated at the Episcopal Seminary. In[Pg 270] 1845 Miss Vertner—she had taken the name of her foster parents—was married to Claude M. Johnson, a wealthy citizen of Lexington, and she at once took her place as a great social and literary leader. One of her sons, Mr. Claude M. Johnson, was mayor of Lexington for several years, and he was afterwards in the service of the United States government. In 1861 Mrs. Johnson's husband died, and she removed to Rochester, New York, where she resided for two years, when she was married to Alexander Jeffrey, of Edinburgh, Scotland, and they returned to Lexington, her home for the remainder of her life. Mrs. Jeffrey died at Lexington, Kentucky, October 6, 1894, and no woman has yet arisen in Kentucky to take her position as society's favorite beauty and poet. She began her literary career as a contributor of verse to Prentice's Louisville Journal. Her pen-name was "Rosa," and under this name her first volume of poems was published, entitled Poems, by Rosa (Boston, 1857). This was followed by Florence Vale; Woodburn, a novel; Daisy Dare and Baby Power (Philadelphia, 1871), a book of poems; The Crimson Hand and Other Poems (Philadelphia, 1881), her best known work; and Marah (Philadelphia, 1884), a novel. Mrs. Jeffrey was also the author of a five-act comedy, called Love and Literature. As a novelist or playwright she did nothing especially strong, but as a writer of pleasing poems her place in the literature of Kentucky seems secure.

Bibliography. History of Kentucky, by R. H. Collins (Covington, Kentucky, 1882); The Register (Frankfort, January, 1911).


[From The Crimson Hand and Other Poems (Philadelphia, 1881)]

In a box of airy trifles—fans, flowers, and ribbons gay—
I chanced to find a tasselled glove, worn once on the first of May.
[Pg 271] How long ago? Ah me, ah me! twelve years, twelve years today!
Alas! for that beautiful, fragrant time, so far in the past away,
And crowned with sweeter memories than any other May,
Standing alone, in a checkered life—it was my wedding day!
The passing hours were shod with light, and their glowing sandals made
Such sunny tracks that they guide me yet through a retrospect of shade.
Through changes and shadows of twelve long years, down that love-lit path I stray;
The winters come and the winters go, yet it leads to an endless May.
No leaves of the autumn have fallen there, and never a flake of snow
Has chilled the path of those May-day hours that gleam through the long ago!
The flowering cherry's wild perfume came stealing, bitter sweet,
From fragrant breezes drifting heaps of blossoms to my feet;
The flowers are dust, but the bees that bore their subtle sweets away
Dropped golden honey on the path of that beautiful first of May.
And the sweetness clings, for I gather it in wandering back today.
Twelve years! twelve years!—a long, long life for a little tasselled glove!
Yet, I treasure it still for his dear sake who clasped with so much love
The hand that wore, on that festal night, this delicate, dainty thing—
His forever! bound to him by the link of a wedding ring!
The glove is soiled and faded now, but the ring is as bright today
As the love that flooded my life with light on that beautiful first of May.


[From the same]

A memory filled my heart last night
With all its youthful glow;
[Pg 272] Under the ashes, out of my sight,
I buried it long ago;
I buried it deep, I bade it rest,
And whispered a long "good-by;"
But lo! it has risen—too sweet, too blest
Too cherished a thing to die.
In the dim, dim past, where the shadows fall,
I left it, but, crowned with light,
A spirit of joy in the banquet-hall,
It haunted my soul last night.
One earnest, tender, passionate glance—
I cherished it—that was all,
As we drifted on through the mazy dance
To a musical rise and fall.
It rose with a weird and witching swell,
'Mid the twinkling of merry feet,
And clasped me close in a wild, strange spell
Of memories bitter-sweet;
Bitter—because they left a sting
And vanished: a lifelong pain;
Sweet—because nothing can ever bring
Such joy to my heart again.
To me it was nothing, only a waltz;
To the other it meant no wrong;
Men may be cruel—who are not false—
And women remember too long.


Mrs. Sallie Rochester Ford, the mother of good Grace Truman, was born at Rochester Springs, near Danville, Kentucky, in 1828. Miss Rochester was graduated from the female seminary at Georgetown, Kentucky, in 1849, and six years later she was married to Rev. Samuel H. Ford (1823-1905), a Baptist preacher and editor of Louisville[Pg 273] and St. Louis. She was her husband's associate in his literary enterprises, rendering him excellent service at all times. Her last years were spent at St. Louis, in which city she died in February, 1910, having rounded out more than four score years. Mrs. Ford's religious novel, Grace Truman, or Love and Principle (New York, 1857) attracted wide attention in its day, and it was reprinted many times. It was read by thousands of young girls; and ministers descanted upon it in their sermons. While the work sets forth that the Baptist road is the only right of way to heaven, and is sentimental to the core, it is fairly well-written, and it undoubtedly did much good. A copy of it may be found in almost any collection of Kentucky books. Grace Truman was followed by Mary Bunyan (New York, 1859); Morgan and His Men (Mobile, Ala., 1864); Ernest Quest (New York, 1877); Evangel Wiseman (1907); and Mrs. Ford's final work, published at St. Louis, The Life of Rochester Ford, the Successful Christian Lawyer.

Bibliography. How I Came to Write "Grace Truman: An Appendix to the 1886 edition; Adams's Dictionary of American Authors (Boston, 1905).


[From Grace Truman (St. Louis, 1886)]

May roses fling abroad their rich fragrance on the evening air! May dews glide noiselessly to the newly awakened earth, and lose themselves in her fresh, green bosom. A soft May moon steals above the eastern horizon, and gilds with radiant luster the brow of night. Gentle May zephyrs from their airy home glide over the earth, kissing the lips of the rose, and the tender cheek of the hedge-row violet. Young and tender May leaves whisper to each other tales of love, away, away, in the dark old forests.

And other lips than those of the dancing leaves have whispered tales of love; and mortal ears have heard its sweet low murmurings; and mortal hearts have felt its thrilling inspiration,[Pg 274] until the soul, fired beneath its ecstatic power, has tasted of bliss which mortal tongue can never say.

In the hospitable mansion of Mr. Gray, all is excitement and expectancy. She to whom their hearts were so closely wedded, the living, joyous Annie, is tonight to take upon her the marriage vow. She is to wed the man of her heart's free choice, the object of her pure unsullied love. She is to stand in the presence of God and many witnesses, and promise to love and cherish, yea as long as life shall last, him upon whom she has bestowed her girlhood's fresh full confidence and affection.

The house is brilliantly lighted throughout, and everything bears the testimony of free Kentucky hospitality. 'Tis but the twilight hour—early, yet the guests are fast assembling.

It was a simple yet beautiful and impressive scene—that little group as it stood, while the aged man of God, in a solemn and touching manner, united in indissoluble ties the two warm loving hearts before him. The vailed form of the bride, leaning on the arm of him who was henceforth to be her earthly stay; the calm dignified form, and earnest, we might say, almost holy expression of him who was receiving the precious trust—the bent form, and hoary locks, and tremulous voice of the minister—all conspired to make the scene one of solemn beauty and intense interest.

Congratulations followed, and many were the kisses that pressed the blushing cheek of the happy bride, who, with her vail thrown back from her brow and the color playing over her bright face "like moonlight over streams," looked the very embodiment of grace and loveliness.

Fannie calmly waited till the excitement was measurably over; and then approaching her new cousin, leaning on the arm of Mr. Ray, gave them each a fervent kiss and her warmest wishes for their future happiness.

The time passed most delightfully to all present. Mr. and Mrs. Gray moved about among the guests dispensing pleasure and enjoyment wherever they went. But the bride and bridegroom were the chief attraction; she, with her naturally exuberant spirits, heightened by the excitement of the occasion, and yet tempered by her husband's dignified cheerfulness; and he, with[Pg 275] his fine conversational powers and affable manner, drew around them an admiring crowd wherever they were. The young ladies and gentlemen promenaded and chatted gayly, while the more elderly ones grouped themselves together in different parts of the room for the purpose of social conversation.

Supper was served in liberal, handsome style; and Mr. and Mrs. Gray, assisted by Mr. and Mrs. Truman, attended to the wants of their guests in the most obliging and attentive manner. And when the hour arrived for the company to disperse to their respective homes, each one went away happy in the thoughts of having passed a most agreeable hour.

Mr. and Mrs. Gray accompanied their daughter to Weston the day after the wedding, when they met with a most welcome reception from Mr. and Mrs. Holmes, who had provided an evening entertainment for the bridal party, and had called together many of their friends.

They remained several days, during which time they saw their daughter nicely and comfortably ensconced in a neat little brick cottage, situated in a very pleasant part of the village, and which was henceforth called "The Parsonage."

Annie, or, we should rather say, Mrs. Lewis, united with the little church of which her husband was now the almost idolized pastor, on the Saturday after her marriage. It had been so arranged by Mr. Lewis that they should be married on Tuesday previous to their church meeting, that she might thus soon cast her lot among his people. She was welcomed with warm hearts and affectionate greeting; and when, on the following morning, her husband led her down into the stream, where but a few months before he had followed Christ in baptism, they received her from the liquid grave, a member of the household of faith, a laborer with them in the vineyard of the Lord.

[Pg 276]


Col. John E. Hatcher ("G. Washington Bricks"), a newspaper humorist who won wide fame in his day and generation, but who is now quite sealed over and forgotten, was born near Charlottesville, Virginia, in 1828. When a boy his parents emigrated to Tennessee. At the age of twenty years Hatcher became editor of The American Democrat at Florence, Alabama; and in 1852 he purchased The Mirror, a paper which General Zollicoffer had established at Columbia, Tennessee. Some time later Hatcher disposed of that property, and accepted a position on the Nashville Patriot. He was fast gaining a reputation for his humorous sketches, paragraphs, and rhymes, which were floating through many Southern newspapers under his pen-name of "G. Washington Bricks." Hatcher relinquished the pen for the sword when the Civil War began, becoming an officer on the staff of General Cheatham. After the war, or in 1867, Colonel Hatcher settled at Louisville, Kentucky, joining the staff of Prentice's then fast-expiring Journal. When, in the following year, the Journal was united with the Courier, he became editor of the Daily Democrat; and when that paper was consolidated with the other two to make The Courier-Journal, he became one of the editors of the new paper, and continued to write for it so long as he lived. For a short time he did some special work for a Louisville publication known as The Evening Express, conducted by Mr. Overton. A few years before his death Colonel Hatcher returned to his old home at Columbia, Tennessee, and founded The Mail; but he became "outside editor" of The Courier-Journal, laying down his pen for that paper only with his death, which occurred at Columbia, Tennessee, March 26, 1879. Consumption caused his demise and robbed Southern journalism of one of its finest minds. Colonel Hatcher married Miss Lizzie[Pg 277] McKnight, daughter of a prosperous merchant at Iuka, Mississippi, and the early death of their only child, a daughter, coupled with consumption, hastened his own death. As an editorial paragraphist Colonel Hatcher has never had a peer in Kentucky or the South. Prentice, the father of the paragraph, was a wit; Hatcher was a humorist; and his writings were often credited to Prentice by those who were not acquainted with the inner workings of the office. Henry Watterson has written this fine tribute to Colonel Hatcher's memory:

He was one of the silent singers of the press, but he lacked nothing of eminence except good fortune; for he was a humorist of the very first water, and had he lived under different conditions could not have failed of the celebrity to which his talents entitled him. Born not merely poor, but far inland, with no early advantages, and later in life with none except those furnished by a rural newspaper; ill health overtook him before he had divined his own powers.... His wit was not so aggressive as that of Mr. Prentice. But he had more humor. He died in the prime of life and left behind him a professional tradition, which is cherished by the little circle of friends to whom a charming personality and many brilliant gifts made him very dear.

Bibliography. The Courier-Journal (March 27, 1879); Oddities of Southern Life, by Henry Watterson (Boston, 1882).


[From The Courier-Journal]

Garters with monogram clasps are now worn by the pretty girls. They are rather a novelty yet, but we hope to see more of them.

"The New York Telegraph advises people to marry for love and not for money." Good advice, certainly; but inasmuch as you will always be in want of money if you marry for love, and always in want of love if you marry for money, your safest way is to marry for a little of both.

Some of our contemporaries will persist in speaking of us as a[Pg 278] "rebel." That we fought for the stars and bars with a heroism of which Marathon, Leuctra, and Thermopylae never even dreamed, the bones of half-a-dozen substitutes which lie bleeding upon as many "stormy heights and carnage covered fields" bear testimony abundant and indisputable, and that we suffer ourselves still to be called a "rebel" without unsheathing the avenging dagger and wading up to our knees in gore, is simply because there is already as much blood upon the hands of our substitutes as we can furnish soap to wash off without becoming a bankrupt. Nevertheless, if this thing is much longer persisted in, there may come a time when virtue will cease to be a forebearance. One more taste of blood, this sanguinary arm once more uplifted to smite, and the world will shudder.

General Grant says he won't call an extra session of Congress unless the war in Europe is likely to give us trouble. So he is determined that if the gods bring us one calamity, he will immediately step forward with another.

For list of candidates see first page.—Banner. For the candidates themselves—but you needn't trouble yourself to see them; they'll see you.

The French General Failly, who was killed by a Prussian shell, and was afterward murdered by his own soldiers, and subsequently blew out his own brains, is now a prisoner at Mayence—whether dead or alive, the telegraph does not inform us.

The Glasgow Times tells of a man in Georgia, fifty years of age, who never in his life drank a glass of whiskey, smoked a pipe, or courted a woman. The poor wretch has lived utterly in vain. The man who has never sat by a beautiful woman, with a pipe in his mouth, a glass of whiskey in one hand, and the whalebones of her palpitating stays in the other, and "with a lip unused to the cool breath of reason, told his love," has no more idea of Paradise than a deaf and dumb orang-outang has of metaphysics. Even without the pipe and whiskey there is, strictly speaking, nothing disagreeable about it.

The United States navy has but one Admiral Poor. We wish we could say it has but one poor admiral.

[Pg 279]


William Courtney Watts, author of a single historical novel which is regarded by many as the finest work of its kind yet done by a Kentucky hand, was born at Salem, Kentucky, February 7, 1830. His family has no record of his school days, but he was married to Miss Nannie Ferguson when a young man, and six children were born to them. Watts's early years were spent at Salem and Smithland, Kentucky, but he later went to New Orleans as a clerk in the firm of Givens, Watts and Company, cotton brokers. He shortly afterwards joined the New York branch of this New Orleans house, known as Watts, Crowe and Company, as a partner in the business; and from New York Watts went to Liverpool, England, to represent the firm of W. C. Watts and Company, which was the foreign title for the New Orleans and New York houses. For some years the business was very prosperous, and Watts, of course, shared largely in the firm's success. After the usual congratulatory messages between England and the United States had been exchanged, Watts is said to have sent the first cablegram across the Atlantic. After many years of prosperity, failure overtook the house of Watts, and he returned to New York, setting up in business with a Mr. Slaughter. Some time subsequently he came back to Kentucky, making his home in Smithland, but rheumatism ruined his health, causing lameness, and making him an invalid for the remainder of his life. In Smithland, during days of illness, Watts wrote his splendid story, The Chronicles of a Kentucky Settlement (New York, 1897). This novel of early Kentucky life is one of the most charming and delightful tales ever told by an American author, although founded upon fact and, in a sense, twice-told. The Chronicles is the only book Watts wrote, and he has come down to posterity with this single story in his feeble hand. The preface, signed on the sixty-seventh[Pg 280] anniversary of his birth, was done but ten months before his death, which occurred at Smithland, Kentucky December 27, 1897. He is buried in the cemetery of the little Kentucky town over which he cast the glamour of romance, almost unknown to its citizen of this day, and still unappreciated and unheralded by Kentuckians. His Chronicles is known only to the student and collector, as it was never properly put before the public, though published by a powerful New York firm. His family knows little of his life and is quite careless of his fame. In years to come the Chronicles may take high rank among the finest series of historical pictures ever penned of a single Southern settlement, and then William Courtney Watts will come into his very own.

Bibliography. The Courier-Journal (December 28, 1897); letter from Watts's daughter to the author.


[From Chronicles of a Kentucky Settlement (New York, 1897)]

A few weeks after the race there was a grand wedding, and, this time, Squire Howard united in holy matrimony Jefferson Brantley and Emily Wilmot, the ceremony taking place at the residence of the bride's father. Joseph Adair and Horace Benton were the groomsmen, and Laura Howard and Ada Howard the bridesmaids. A young lady from Princeton was to have been one of the bridesmaids, but illness prevented her attendance, and Ada Howard took her place. The residence of Mr. Wilmot was too small to admit of dancing, but the company present had a merry time—the fun and frolic being kept up until a late hour. It was then the custom to "give" (hold) the infare at the residence of the groom's parents or some other near relative, but, as Mr. Brantley had no relatives in the county, his infare was held at the Brick Hotel in Salem, and great were the preparations made on the occasion—never had such an elegant and sumptuous table been spread in those "parts"; there were meats of many[Pg 281] sorts, including barbacued pigs, and cakes, pastries, fruits, nuts, and wines and liquors in abundance. Silas Holman and Billy Wilmot were never in better trim, and their fiddles seemed the fountain of such ecstatic sounds as to set the nerves of old as well as young tingling with a pleasurable excitement which could only find its true expression in the quick and graceful movements of the dance. And dancing there was, and such dancing! There was Bird McCoy, who could "cut the double shuffle,"—spring into the air, strike his feet together thrice before lighting, and not lose step to the music. And among the young ladies—many of them country girls whose lives in the open air made them as active as squirrels and as graceful as fawns—were many good dancers, but it was conceded that among them all the slight, sylph-like Ada Howard was the best—"the pick of the flock." And the mirth and fun grew "fast and furious," and the "dancers quick and quicker flew." Nor did the fun and frolic cease until faint streaks of light in the East heralded the coming morn. They almost literally

"Danced all night 'til broad daylight,
And went home with the girls in the morning."

And yet, be it said that, while there was a good deal of drinking that night, there was no drunkenness, rowdyism, unseemly behavior, or ungentlemanly conversation; for woe to the young man who at such a time and place, when ladies were present, had violated the recognized rules of decorum!

It is certain, however, that several young persons came very near that night being "fiddled out of the church." There was one gay, good-humored, hearty country girl who, when "churched" for dancing that night, admitted that she was "on the floor with the so-called dancers"; that she had a "partner," and took part in the movements; but, she contended, that inasmuch as she had not crossed her feet, she had violated no rule of the church. "What," she asked, "if I walk forward and backward and turn and bow without music, is that dancing? And if I do the same when there is music, does that make it dancing?" And the good old brethren, who were sitting in judgment, after mature deliberation, came to the conclusion that they were not "cl'ar on the p'int 'bout crossin' the feet." "And," said one,[Pg 282] "if we err, let it be on the side o' marcy." "Yes," replied another, "but let the young sister understand that she must n't do it ag'in." And so the matter was settled.


James Proctor Knott, he who made Duluth famous, was born at Lebanon, Kentucky, August 29, 1830. In 1851 he became a Missouri lawyer, and later a member of the Missouri legislature. For a time he was attorney-general of the state but, refusing to take certain test oaths prescribed for officials, his office was declared vacant and he returned to Lebanon, his birthplace. In 1866 Knott was sent to the lower house of Congress, and he was re-elected two years later. On January 27, 1871, he delivered his celebrated Duluth speech upon the St. Croix and Superior land grant, which effort brought him a national reputation as an orator and humorist, but which injured him as a constructive statesman—if he ever was or could be such a statesman! Knott was in Congress again from 1875 until 1883, when he was elected governor of Kentucky. Governor Knott was not an overly forceful executive, but the people enjoyed his witty stories and speeches, and thus his term wore on and out. It was an era of good feeling, Kentuckians smiling and taking their governor good naturedly at all times. His brief eulogy to remember James Francis Leonard, the Kentucky telegrapher, was the finest literary thing he did while governor of Kentucky. The governor was dean of the law faculty of Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, from 1894 to 1901, when, old age coming on, he returned to his home at Lebanon, where the final years of his life were passed, and where he died on June 18, 1911.

[Pg 283]

Bibliography: Oddities in Southern Life and Character, by Henry Watterson (Boston, 1883); The Life of James Francis Leonard, by J. W. Townsend (Louisville, 1909).


[From Oddities in Southern Life and Character, edited by Henry Watterson (Boston, 1883)]

Hence, as I have said, sir, I was utterly at a loss to determine where the terminus of this great and indispensable road should be, until I accidentally overheard some gentleman the other day mention the name of "Duluth." [Great laughter.] Duluth! The word fell upon my ear with peculiar and indescribable charm, like the gentle murmur of a low fountain stealing forth in the midst of roses, or the soft, sweet accents of an angel's whisper in the bright, joyous dream of sleeping innocence. Duluth! 'Twas the name for which my soul had panted for years, as the hart panteth for the water-brooks. [Renewed laughter.] But where was Duluth? Never, in all my limited reading, had my vision been gladdened by seeing the celestial word in print. [Laughter.] And I felt a profounder humiliation in my ignorance that its dulcet syllables had never before ravished my delighted ear. [Roars of laughter.] I was certain the draughtsman of this bill had never heard of it, or it would have been designated as one of the termini of this road. I asked my friends about it, but they knew nothing of it. I rushed to the library and examined all the maps I could find. [Laughter.] I discovered in one of them a delicate, hair-like line, diverging from the Mississippi near a place marked Prescott, which I supposed was intended to represent the river St. Croix, but I could nowhere find Duluth.

Nevertheless, I was confident it existed somewhere, and that its discovery would constitute the crowning glory of the present century, if not of all modern times. [Laughter.] I knew it was bound to exist in the very nature of things; that the symmetry and perfection of our planetary system would be incomplete without it [renewed laughter]; that the elements of material nature would long since have resolved themselves back into original chaos if there had been such a hiatus in creation as would have resulted from leaving out Duluth. [Roars of laughter.][Pg 284] In fact, sir, I was overwhelmed with the conviction that Duluth not only existed somewhere, but that wherever it was it was a great and glorious place. I was convinced that the greatest calamity that ever befell the benighted nations of the ancient world was in their having passed away without a knowledge of the actual existence of Duluth; that their fabled Atlantis, never seen save by the hallowed vision of inspired poesy, was, in fact, but another name for Duluth; that the golden orchard of the Hesperides was but a poetical synonym for the beer gardens in the vicinity of Duluth. [Great laughter.] I was certain that Herodotus had died a miserable death because in all his travels and with all his geographical research he had never heard of Duluth. [Laughter.] I knew that if the immortal spirit of Homer could look down from another heaven than that created by his own celestial genius upon the long lines of pilgrims from every nation of the earth to the gushing fountain of poesy opened by the touch of his magic wand; if he could be permitted to behold the vast assemblage of grand and glorious productions of the lyric art called into being by his own inspired strains, he would weep tears of bitter anguish that, instead of lavishing all the stores of his mighty genius upon the fall of Ilion, it had not been his more blessed lot to crystalize in deathless song the rising glories of Duluth. [Great and continued laughter.] Yet, sir, had it not been for this map, kindly furnished me by the legislature of Minnesota, I might have gone down to my obscure and humble grave in an agony of despair, because I could nowhere find Duluth. [Renewed laughter.] Had such been my melancholy fate, I have no doubt that, with the last feeble pulsation of my breaking heart, with the last faint exhalation of my fleeting breath, I should have whispered, "Where is Duluth?" [Roars of laughter.]

[Pg 285]


George Graham Vest, exquisite eulogist of man's good friend, the dog, was born at Frankfort, Kentucky, December 6, 1830. At the age of eighteen years Vest was graduated from Centre College, Danville, Kentucky; and five years later Transylvania University granted him his degree in law. The year of his graduation from Transylvania, 1853, Vest went to Missouri, settling at Georgetown. He rapidly attained a State-wide reputation as a lawyer and orator. In 1860 he was a presidential elector on the Democratic ticket, and a member of the Missouri House of Representatives. Vest's sympathy lay with the South and he resigned his seat in the legislature in order to become a member of the Confederate Congress. He served two years in the Confederate House and one year in the Senate. After the war he resumed the practice of his profession at Sedalia, but he later removed to Kansas City. In 1878 Vest was elected United States Senator from Missouri and this position he held until 1903. In the Senate his powers as an orator and debater were generally recognized, and he became a national figure. Of the many speeches that Senator Vest made, his tribute to the dog, made in a jury trial, is the one thing that will keep his memory green for many years. It appears that Senator Vest was called into a case in which one party was endeavoring to recover damages for the death of a favorite dog, and when it came time for him to speak he arose and delivered his tribute to the dog, and then resumed his seat without having mentioned the case before the jury in any way whatsoever. The jury understood however, and the Senator won his case. Senator Vest died at Sweet Springs, Missouri, August 9, 1904.

[Pg 286]

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. vi); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1910, v. xii).


[From The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (Washington, 1905, v. xii)]

Upon the canvas of the past, Washington and Jefferson stand forth the central figures in our struggle for independence. The character of the former was so rounded and justly proportioned, that, so long as our country lives, or a single community of Americans can be found, Washington will be "First in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen."

To Washington we are more indebted than to any one man for national existence; but what availed the heroism of Bunker Hill, the sufferings of Valley Forge, or the triumph of Yorktown, if the government they established had been but an imitation of the monarchy from which we had separated?

To Jefferson we owe eternal gratitude for his sublime confidence in popular government, and his unfaltering courage in defending at all times and in all places, the great truth, that "All governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed."

The love of liberty is found not in palaces, but with the poor and oppressed. It flutters in the heart of the caged bird, and sighs with the worn and wasted prisoner in his dungeon. It has gone with martyrs to the stake, and kissed their burning lips as the tortured spirit winged its flight to God!

In the temple of this deity Jefferson was high priest!

For myself, I worship no mortal man living or dead; but if I could kneel at such a shrine, it would be with uncovered head and loving heart at the grave of Thomas Jefferson.


[From Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1910, v. xii)]

Gentlemen of the Jury:

The best human friend a man has in the world may turn against him and become his enemy. His son or daughter that he has reared with loving care may prove ungrateful. Those[Pg 287] who are nearest and dearest to us, those whom we trust with our happiness and our good name may become traitors to their faith. The money that a man has he may lose. It flies away from him, perhaps, when he needs it most. A man's reputation may be sacrificed in a moment of ill-considered action. The people who are prone to fall on their knees to do us honor when success is with us may be the first to throw the stone of malice when failure settles its cloud upon our heads. The one absolutely unselfish friend that a man can have in this selfish world, the one that never deceives him, the one that never proves ungrateful and treacherous is his dog.

A man's dog stands by him in prosperity and in poverty, in health and in sickness. He will sleep on the cold ground where the wintry wind blows and the snow drifts fiercely, if only he may be near his master's side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer. He will lick the wounds and sores that come in encounter with the roughness of the world. He guards the sleep of his pauper master as if he were a prince. When all other friends desert he remains. When riches take wings and reputation falls to pieces, he is as constant in his love as the sun in its journeys through the heavens. If fortune drives the master forth an outcast in the world, friendless and homeless, the faithful dog asks no higher privilege than that of accompanying, to guard against danger, to fight against his enemies, and when, the last scene of all comes and when death takes the master in its embrace and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by the graveside may the noble dog be found, his head between his paws, his eyes sad but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even in death.

[Pg 288]


William Preston Johnston, biographer and poet, was born at Louisville, Kentucky, January 5, 1831, the son of the famous Confederate general, Albert Sidney Johnston. He was graduated from Yale in 1852. During the Civil War young Johnston was on the staff of Jefferson Davis. After the war he was professor of history and literature in Washington and Lee University, Lexington, Virginia, for ten years. In 1880 he accepted the presidency of Louisiana State University, at Baton Rouge. Paul Tulane's magnificent gift in 1883 made Tulane University possible, and Johnston became its first president. This position he held until his death, which occurred at New Orleans, July 16, 1899. President Johnston's Life of General Albert Sidney Johnston (New York, 1878), is one of the most admirable biographies ever written by a Kentuckian. His graphic description of the battle of Shiloh, in which his famous father met death and the South defeat, is now accepted, even in the North, as the best account of that desperate conflict. Had General Johnston lived a day longer no one can even guess what it would have meant to the South and to the North. President Johnston was also the author of The Prototype of Hamlet (1890), in which his power as a Shakesperian scholar is well proved; and he published The Johnstons of Salisbury. He was a maker of charming verse, which may be read in his three collections, My Garden Walk (1894), Pictures of the Patriarchs (1896), and Seekers After God (Louisville, 1898), a book of sonnets. As a man, Johnston was a true type of the courtly Southern soldier and scholar.

Bibliography. Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1888, v. iii); William Preston Johnston's Work for a New South, by A. D. Mayo (Washington, 1900); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1909, v. vii).

[Pg 289]


[From The Life of Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston (New York, 1879)]

Saturday afternoon, April 5th, the sun, breaking through the mists which drifted away, set in a cloudless sky. The night was clear, calm, and beautiful. General Johnston, tired out with the vigils of the night before, slept quietly in an ambulance-wagon, his staff bivouacking by the camp-fires around him. Some of Hardee's troops having wasted their rations, he and Bragg spent a large part of the night getting up provisions for them. Before the faintest glimmer of dawn, the wide forest was alive with preparations for the mighty contest of the coming day. No bugle-note sounded, and no drum beat the reveillé; but men took their hasty morning meal, and looked with sharp attention to the arms that were to decide the fortunes of the fight. The cool, gray dawn found them in motion. Morning opened with all the delicate fragrance and beauty of the season, enhanced by the contrast of the day before. The sky was serene, the air was bracing, the dew lay heavy on the tender green of leaf and herb, and the freshness of early spring was on all around. When the sun rose it was with unclouded brilliancy; and, as it shed its glories over the coverts of the oak-woods, the advancing host, stirred by the splendor of the scene and the enthusiasm of the hour, passed the omen from lip to lip, and welcomed its rising as another "sun of Austerlitz."

The native buoyance of General Johnston's self-repressed temper broke its barriers at the prospect of that struggle which should settle for all time by the arbitrament of arms the dispute as to his own military ability and skill and the fate of the Confederate cause in the West. He knew the hazard; but he knew, too, that he had done all that foresight, fortitude, energy, and strategy, could accomplish to secure a victory, and he welcomed with exultant joy the day that was about to decide not only these great questions, but for him all questions, solving the mysteries of life and death. Men who came within his influence on the battle-field felt and confessed the inspiration of his presence, his manner, and his words. As he gave his orders in terse sentences, every word seemed to ring with a presage of victory.

[Pg 290]

Turning to his staff, as he mounted, he exclaimed, "Tonight we will water our horses in the Tennessee River." It was thus that he formulated his plan of battle. It must not stop short of entire victory.

As he rode forward he encountered Colonel Randal L. Gibson, who was the intimate friend of his son. When Gibson ordered his brigade to salute, General Johnston took him warmly by the hand and said: "Randal, I never see you but I think of William. I hope you may get through safely to-day, but we must win a victory." Gibson says he felt greatly stirred by his words.

Sharp skirmishing had begun before he reached the front. Here he met Colonel John S. Marmaduke, commanding the Third Arkansas Regiment. This officer, in reply to General Johnston's questions, explained, with some pride, that he held the centre of the front line, the other regiments forming on him. Marmaduke had been with General Johnston in Utah, at Bowling Green, and in the retreat to Corinth, and regarded him with the entire affection and veneration of a young soldier for his master in the art of war. General Johnston put his hand on Marmaduke's shoulder, and said to him with an earnestness that went to his heart, "My son, we must this day conquer or perish!" Marmaduke felt himself moved to a tenfold resolution.

General Johnston said to the ambitious Hindman, who had been in the vanguard from the beginning: "You have earned your spurs as major-general. Let this day's work win them."

"Men of Arkansas!" he exclaimed to a regiment from that State, "they say you boast of your prowess with the bowie-knife. To-day you wield a nobler weapon—the bayonet. Employ it well." It was with such words, as he rode from point to point, that he raised a spirit in that host which swept away the serried lines of the conquerors of Donelson.

[Pg 291]


Will Wallace Harney, poet, was born at Bloomington, Indiana, June 20, 1832, the son of John H. Harney, professor of mathematics in the University of Indiana, and author of the first Algebra edited by an American. When the future poet was seven years of age his father removed to Louisville, Kentucky, to accept the presidency of Louisville College. In 1844 President Harney became editor of the Louisville Daily Democrat, which he conducted for nearly twenty-five years. Will Wallace Harney was educated by the old grammarian, Noble Butler, and at Louisville College. He became a teacher in the public schools of the city, in which he taught for five years; and he was the first principal of the high school there, holding the position for two years. Know-Nothingism then swept the city and elected a new board of trustees, which requested Harney's resignation. He was appointed to a professorship in the State Normal School at Lexington, which he held for two years. He then returned to Louisville to practice law, but he was shortly afterwards asked to become assistant editor of the Daily Democrat; and after his father's death, in 1867, he became editor of that paper. Harney's masterpiece, The Stab, that John J. Piatt called "a tragic little night-piece which Heine could not have surpassed in its simple, graphic narration and vivid suggestiveness," was written in Kentucky before 1860. In 1869 Harney removed to Florida, where he planted an orange grove and wrote for the high-class magazines and newspapers of the East and South. From 1883 to 1885 he was editor of The Bitter Sweet, a newspaper of Kissimmee. Harney spent the final years of his life with his only son, William R. Harney, a business man of Jacksonville, to whom he inscribed his one book, The Spirit of the South (Boston, 1909). This volume[Pg 292] brought together his poems and short stories which he cared to preserve from newspapers and periodicals. The poet died at Jacksonville, Florida, March 28, 1912.

Bibliography. Blades o' Blue Grass, by Fannie P. Dickey (Louisville, 1892); Memorial History of Louisville, Kentucky, by J. S. Johnston (Chicago, 1896).


[From The Spirit of the South (Boston, 1909)]

On the road, the lonely road,
Under the cold white moon,
Under the ragged trees, he strode;
He whistled, and shifted his heavy load;
Whistled a foolish tune.
There was a step timed with his own;
A figure that stooped and bowed;
A cold white blade that flashed and shone,
Like a splinter of daylight downward thrown—
And the moon went behind a cloud.
But the moon came out, so broad and good,
The barn cock woke and crowed;
Then roughed his feathers in drowsy mood,
And the brown owl called to his mate in the wood,
That a dead man lay on the road.


Josiah Stoddard Johnston, journalist and historian, was born at New Orleans, February 10, 1833. He is the nephew of the celebrated Confederate cavalry leader, General Albert Sidney Johnston. Left an orphan when but five years old, he was reared by relatives in Kentucky. He was graduated from Yale in 1853; and the following year[Pg 293] he was married to Miss Elizabeth W. Johnson, daughter of George W. Johnson, Confederate governor of Kentucky. Johnston was a cotton planter in Arkansas from 1855 to 1859, and a Kentucky farmer until the Civil War began. He served throughout the war upon the staffs of Generals Bragg, Buckner, and Breckinridge. Colonel Johnston was editor of the old Frankfort Yeoman for more than twenty years; and from 1903 to 1908 he was associate editor of the Louisville Courier-Journal. In 1871 Colonel Johnston was Adjutant-General of Kentucky; and Secretary of State from 1875 to 1879. He has been vice-president of the Filson Club of Louisville since 1893; and he is now consulting geologist of the Kentucky Geological Survey. Colonel Johnston's knowledge of plants and mammals is very extensive and most surprising in a man of literary tastes. His tube-roses and flower gardens is one of the traditions of the old town of Frankfort. Colonel Johnston has published The Memorial History of Louisville, Kentucky (Chicago, 1896, two vols.); The First Explorations of Kentucky (Louisville, 1898); and The Confederate History of Kentucky. Colonel Johnston is one of the finest men in Kentucky to-day, dignified, cultured, and deeply learned in the history of Kentucky and the West.

Bibliography. Memorial History of Louisville (Chicago, 1896); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1909, v. vi).


[From First Explorations of Kentucky (Louisville, Kentucky, 1898)]

The Revolutionary War was drawing to a close, involving Virginia in its last throes in the devastation of an invading army. The whole eastern portion was overrun by the British forces under Arnold and Tarleton, the capital taken, and much public and private property destroyed everywhere. Charlottesville, to[Pg 294] which the legislature had adjourned, Monticello, and Castle Hill were raided by Tarleton's dragoons, and the legislature, Mr. Jefferson, and Doctor Walker barely escaped capture. An interesting incident of the raid is recorded well illustrating the spirit which actuated the American women of that period. Not far distant from Charlottesville, on an estate known as "The Farm," resided Nicholas Lewis, the uncle and guardian of Meriwether Lewis, of the Lewis and Clark expedition to the Pacific. His wife was Mary Walker, the eldest daughter of Doctor Walker. Her husband was absent in the army when Tarleton with his raiders swooped down on her home and proceeded to appropriate forage and every thing eatable and portable. She received the British cavalryman with spirit and dignity, and upbraided him sharply for his war on defenseless women, telling him to go to the armies of Virginia and meet her men. Tarleton parried her thrusts with politeness as well as he could, and after his men were rested, resumed his march.

After his departure Mrs. Lewis discovered that his men had carried off all her ducks except a single old drake. This she caused to be caught and sent it to Tarleton by a messenger, who overtook him, with her compliments, saying that the drake was lonesome without his companions, and as he had evidently overlooked it, she wished to reunite them. From that time she was known as "Captain Moll," and bears that sobriquet in the family records. She was a woman of strong character, was still living at "The Farm" in 1817, and left many descendants in Virginia and in and near Louisville, Kentucky. On the 19th of October, 1781, Tarleton's career closed, and Virginia was relieved from similar devastation for a period of eighty years by the surrender at Yorktown.

[Pg 295]


Miss Julia Stockton Dinsmore ("F.V."), poet, was born in Louisiana about 1833, but most of her long life of nearly eighty years has been spent in Kentucky. For many years Miss Dinsmore published an occasional poem in the newspapers of her home town, Petersburg, Kentucky, but, in 1910, when she was seventy-seven years of age, the New York firm of Doubleday, Page and Company discovered Miss Dinsmore to be a poet of much grace and charm, and they at once issued the first collection of her work, entitled "Verses and Sonnets." This little volume contains more than eighty exquisite lyrics, which have been favorably reviewed by the literary journals of the country. Love Among the Roses, Noon in a Blue Grass Pasture, Far 'Mid the Snows, That's for Remembrance, and several of the sonnets are very fine. Miss Dinsmore is a great lover of Nature, as her poems reveal, and she is often in the saddle. A most remarkable woman she surely is, having won the plaudits of her people when most women of her years have their eyes turned toward the far country. Another volume of her verse may be published shortly.

Bibliography. Current Literature (June, 1910); The Nation (July 14, 1910).


[From Verses and Sonnets (New York, 1910)]

"What, dear—what dear?"
How sweet and clear
The redbird's eager voice I hear;
Perched on the honeysuckle trellis near
He sits elate,
[Pg 296] Red as the cardinal whose name he bears,
And tossing high the gay cockade he wears
Calls to his mate,
"What, dear—what, dear?"
She stirs upon her nest,
And through her ruddy breast
The tremor of her happy thoughts repressed
Seems rising like a sigh of bliss untold,
There where the searching sunbeams' stealthy gold
Slips past the thorns and her retreat discloses,
Hid in the shadow of June's sweetest roses.
Her russet, rustic home,
Round as inverted dome
Built by themselves and planned,
Within whose tiny scope,
As though to them the hollow of God's hand,
They gladly trust their all with faith and hope.
"What, dear—what, dear?"
Are all the words I hear,
The rest is said, or sung
In some sweet, unknown tongue.
Whose music, only, charms my alien ear;
But bird, my heart can guess
All that its tones express
Of love and cheer, and fear and tenderness.
It says, "Does the day seem long—
The scented and sunny day
Because you must sit apart?
Are you lonesome, my own sweetheart?
You know you can hear my song
And you know I'm alert and strong
And a match for the wickedest jay
That ever could do us wrong.
As I sit on the snowball spray
Or this trellis not far away,
[Pg 297] And look at you on the nest,
And think of those beautiful speckled shells
In whose orbs the birds of the future rest,
My heart with such pride and pleasure swells
As never could be expressed.
"But, dear—but, dear!"—
Now I seem to hear
A change in the notes so proud and clear—
"But, dear—but, dear!
Do you feel no fear
When day is gone and the night is here?
When the cold, white moon looks down on you,
And your feathers are damp with the chilly dew,
And I am silent, and all is still,
Save the sleepless insects, sad and shrill,
And the screeching owl, and the prowling cat,
And the howling dog—when the gruesome bat
Flits past the nest in his circling flight
Do you feel afraid in the lonely night?"
"Courage! my own, when daylight dawns
You shall hear again in the cheerful morns
My madrigal among the thorns,
Whose rugged guardianship incloses
Our link of love among the roses."


Henry Thompson Stanton, one of the most popular poets Kentucky has produced, was born at Alexandria, Virginia, June 30, 1834. He was brought by his father, Judge Richard Henry Stanton, to Maysville, Kentucky, when he was only two years old. Stanton was educated at the Maysville Academy and at West Point, but he was not graduated. He entered the Confederate army as captain of a company in the Fifth Kentucky regiment, and[Pg 298] through various promotions he surrendered as a major. Major Stanton saw much service on the battlefields of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia. After the war he practised law for a time and was editor of the Maysville Bulletin until 1870, when he removed to Frankfort, Kentucky, to become chief assistant to the State Commissioner of Insurance. Major Stanton's first volume of verse was The Moneyless Man and Other Poems (Baltimore, 1871). This title poem, written for a wandering elocutionist who "struck" the town of Maysville one day, and asked the major to write him "a poem that would draw tears from any audience," made him famous and miserable for the rest of his life. For the nomad he "dashed off this special lyric and it brought all Kentucky to the mourners' bench. It was more deadly as a tear-provoker than 'Stay, Jailer, Stay,' and though the author wrote other things which were far better, the public would never admit it, and many people innocently courted death by rushing up to Stanton and exclaiming: 'Oh, and is this Major Stanton who wrote 'The Moneyless Man?' So glad to meet you.'" One Kentucky poet took the philosophy of The Moneyless Man too seriously, and A Reply to the Moneyless Man was the pathetic result. The rhythm of the poem is very pleasing, but it is, in a word, melodramatic. Major Stanton's second and final collection of his verse was Jacob Brown and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1875). It contains several poems that are superior to The Moneyless Man, but the general reader refuses to read them. From 1875 till 1886 he edited the Frankfort Yeoman; and during President Cleveland's first administration he served as Land Commissioner. Besides his poems, Major Stanton wrote a group of paper-backed novels, entitled The Kents; Social Fetters (Washington, 1889); and A Graduate of Paris (Washington, 1890). Major Stanton died at Frankfort, Kentucky, May 8,[Pg 299] 1898. Two years later Poems of the Confederacy (Louisville, 1900), containing the war lyrics of the major, was artistically printed as a memorial to his memory. The introduction to the little book was written by Major Stanton's friend and fellow man of letters, Colonel J. Stoddard Johnston, and it is an altogether fitting remembrance for the author of The Moneyless Man.

Bibliography. Poems of the Confederacy (Louisville, 1900); Confessions of a Tatler, by Elvira Miller Slaughter (Louisville, 1905).


[From The Moneyless Man and Other Poems (Baltimore, 1871)]

Is there no secret place on the face of the earth,
Where charity dwelleth, where virtue has birth?
Where bosoms in mercy and kindness will heave,
When the poor and the wretched shall ask and receive?
Is there no place at all, where a knock from the poor,
Will bring a kind angel to open the door?
Ah, search the wide world wherever you can
There is no open door for a Moneyless Man!
Go, look in yon hall where the chandelier's light
Drives off with its splendor the darkness of night,
Where the rich-hanging velvet in shadowy fold
Sweeps gracefully down with its trimmings of gold,
And the mirrors of silver take up, and renew,
In long lighted vistas the 'wildering view:
Go there! at the banquet, and find, if you can,
A welcoming smile for a Moneyless Man!
Go, look in yon church of the cloud-reaching spire,
Which gives to the sun his same look of red fire,
Where the arches and columns are gorgeous within,
And the walls seem as pure as a soul without sin;
Walk down the long aisles, see the rich and the great
In the pomp and the pride of their worldly estate;
Walk down in your patches, and find, if you can,
[Pg 300] Who opens a pew to a Moneyless Man.
Go, look in the Banks, where Mammon has told
His hundreds and thousands of silver and gold;
Where, safe from the hands of the starving and poor,
Lies pile upon pile of the glittering ore!
Walk up to their counters—ah, there you may stay
'Til your limbs grow old, 'til your hairs grow gray,
And you'll find at the Banks not one of the clan
With money to lend to a Moneyless Man!
Go, look to yon Judge, in his dark-flowing gown,
With the scales wherein law weighteth equity down;
Where he frowns on the weak and smiles on the strong,
And punishes right whilst he justifies wrong;
Where juries their lips to the Bible have laid,
To render a verdict—they've already made:
Go there, in the court-room, and find, if you can,
Any law for the cause of a Moneyless Man!
Then go to your hovel—no raven has fed
The wife who has suffered too long for her bread;
Kneel down by her pallet, and kiss the death-frost
From the lips of the angel your poverty lost:
Then turn in your agony upward to God,
And bless, while it smites you, the chastening rod,
And you'll find, at the end of your life's little span,
There's a welcome above for a Moneyless Man!


[From Jacob Brown and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1875)]

Both of us guilty and both of us sad—
And this is the end of passion!
And people are silly—people are mad,
Who follow the lights of Fashion;
For she was a belle, and I was a beau,
And both of us giddy-headed—
A priest and a rite—a glitter and show,
[Pg 301] And this is the way we wedded.
There were wants we never had known before,
And matters we could not smother;
And poverty came in an open door,
And love went out at another:
For she had been humored—I had been spoiled,
And neither was sturdy-hearted—
Both in the ditches and both of us soiled,
And this is the way we parted.


[From the same]

Prue and I together sat
Beside a running brook;
The little maid put on my hat,
And I the forfeit took.
"Desist," she cried; "It is not right,
I'm neither wife nor sister;"
But in her eye there shone such light,
That twenty times I kiss'd her.


[From Blades o' Bluegrass, by Mrs. F. P. Dickey (Louisville, Kentucky, 1892)]

Sweetheart—I call you sweetheart still,
As in your window's laced recess,
When both our eyes were wont to fill,
One year ago, with tenderness.
I call you sweetheart by the law
Which gives me higher right to feel,
Though I be here in Malaga,
And you in far Mobile.
I mind me when, along the bay
The moonbeams slanted all the night;
When on my breast your dark locks lay,
[Pg 302] And in my hand, your hand so white;
This scene the summer night-time saw,
And my soul took its warm anneal
And bore it here to Malaga
From beautiful Mobile.
The still and white magnolia grove
Brought winged odors to your cheek,
Where my lips seared the burning love
They could not frame the words to speak;
Sweetheart, you were not ice to thaw,
Your bosom neither stone nor steel;
I count to-night, at Malaga,
Its throbbings at Mobile.
What matter if you bid me now
To go my way for others' sake?
Was not my love-seal on your brow
For death, and not for days to break?
Sweetheart, our trothing holds no flaw;
There was no crime and no conceal,
I clasp you here in Malaga,
As erst in sweet Mobile.
I see the bay-road, white with shells,
I hear the beach make low refrain,
The stars lie flecked like asphodels
Upon the green, wide water-plain—
These silent things as magnets draw,
They bear me hence with rushing keel,
A thousand miles from Malaga,
To matchless, fair Mobile.
Sweetheart, there is no sea so wide,
No time in life, nor tide to flow,
Can rob my breast of that one bride
It held so close a year ago.
I see again the bay we saw;
I hear again your sigh's reveal,
I keep the faith at Malaga
I plighted at Mobile.
[Pg 303]


Mrs. Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt, one of Kentucky's most distinguished poets, was born near Lexington, Kentucky, August 11, 1836. Her grandfather was Morgan Bryan, brother-in-law of Daniel Boone, and one of the proprietors of Bryan's Station, near Lexington, famous in the old Indian wars. When only three years old she left Lexington to make her home near Versailles, Kentucky, where her beautiful mother died in 1844. After her mother's death she was sent to her aunt's home at New Castle, Kentucky. Miss Bryan was graduated from Henry Female College, New Castle; and on June 18, 1861, she was married to John James Piatt, the Ohio poet. George D. Prentice, of course, was the first to praise and print Mrs. Piatt's poems and start her upon a literary career. Her husband, too, has been her chief critic, and responsible for the publication of her work in book form. From the first Mrs. Piatt's poems have been deeply introspective, voicing the heart of a woman in every line. Her work has been cordially commended by Bayard Taylor, William Dean Howells, John Burroughs, Hamilton Wright Mabie, and many other well-known and capable critics in America and Europe. Several of Mrs. Piatt's poems were published in The Nests at Washington and Other Poems (Cincinnati, 1861), but her first independent volume, issued anonymously, was A Woman's Poems (Boston, 1871). This is her best known work, made famous by Bayard Taylor in his delightful little book, The Echo Club. This was followed by A Voyage to the Fortunate Isles and Other Poems (1874); That New World and Other Poems (1876); Poems in Company with Children (1877); Dramatic Persons and Moods (1880); The Children Out of Doors and Other Poems (with her husband, 1885); An Irish Garland (1885); Selected Poems[Pg 304] (1885); In Primrose Time (1886); Child's-World Ballads (1887); The Witch in the Glass (1889); An Irish Wild-Flower (1891); An Enchanted Castle (1893); Complete Poems (1894, two vols.); Child's-World Ballads (1896, second series); and The Gift of Tears (Cincinnati, 1906). These volumes prove Mrs. Piatt to be one of the most prolific and finest female poets America has produced. English reviewers have often linked her name with Mrs. Browning's and Miss Rossetti's, and if she has not actually reached their rank, she has surely shown work worthy of a high place in the literature of her native country. Mrs. Piatt is at the present time residing at North Bend, Ohio, near Cincinnati.

Bibliography. The Echo Club, by Bayard Taylor (Boston, 1876); The Poets of Ohio, by Emerson Venable (Cincinnati, 1909).



[From An Irish Garland (North Bend, Ohio, 1885)]

Where the graves were many, we looked for one.
Oh, the Irish rose was red,
And the dark stones saddened the setting sun
With the names of the early dead.
Then, a child who, somehow, had heard of him
In the land we love so well,
Kept lifting the grass till the dew was dim
In the churchyard of Clonmel.
But the sexton came. "Can you tell us where
Charles Wolfe is buried?" "I can—
See, that is his grave in the corner there.
(Ay, he was a clever man,
If God had spared him!) It's many that come
To be asking for him," said he.
But the boy kept whispering, "Not a drum
[Pg 305] Was heard,"—in the dusk to me.
(Then the gray man tore a vine from the wall
Of the roofless church where he lay,
And the leaves that the withering year let fall
He swept, with the ivy away;
And, as we read on the rock the words
That, writ in the moss, we found,
Right over his bosom a shower of birds
In music fell to the ground).
... Young poet, I wonder did you care,
Did it move you in your rest
To hear that child in his golden hair,
From the mighty woods of the West,
Repeating your verse of his own sweet will,
To the sound of the twilight bell,
Years after your beating heart was still
In the churchyard of Clonmel?


[From Songs of Nature, edited by John Burroughs (New York, 1901)]

If this be all, for which I've listened long,
Oh, spirit of the dew!
You did not sing to Shelley such a song
As Shelley sung to you.
Yet, with this ruined Old World for a nest,
Worm-eaten through and through,—
This waste of grave-dust stamped with crown and crest,—
What better could you do?
Ah me! but when the world and I were young,
There was an apple-tree,
There was a voice came in the dawn and sung
[Pg 306] The buds awake—ah me!
Oh, Lark of Europe, downward fluttering near,
Like some spent leaf at best,
You'd never sing again if you could hear
My Blue-Bird of the West!


[From The Gift of Tears (Cincinnati, Ohio, 1906)]

The legend says: In Paradise
God gave the world to man. Ah me!
The woman lifted up her eyes:
"Woman, I have but tears for thee."
But tears? And she began to shed,
Thereat, the tears that comforted.
(No other beautiful woman breathed,
No rival among men had he,
The seraph's sword of fire was sheathed,
The golden fruit hung on the tree.
Her lord was lord of all the earth,
Wherein no child had wailed its birth),
Tears to a bride? Yea, therefore tears.
In Eden? Yea, and tears therefore.
Ah, bride in Eden, there were fears
In the first blush your young cheek wore,
Lest that first kiss had been too sweet,
Lest Eden withered from your feet!
Mother of women! Did you see
How brief your beauty, and how brief,
Therefore, the love of it must be,
In that first garden, that first grief?
Did those first drops of sorrow fall
To move God's pity for us all?
Oh, sobbing mourner by the dead—
[Pg 307] One watcher at the grave grass-grown!
Oh, sleepless for some darling head
Cold-pillowed on the prison-stone,
Or wet with drowning seas! He knew,
Who gave the gift of tears to you!


Boyd Winchester, author of a charming book on Switzerland, was born in Ascension Parish, Louisiana, September 23, 1836. He came to Kentucky when a youth and entered Centre College, Danville, where he studied for three years. He subsequently spent two years at the University of Virginia. Mr. Winchester was graduated from the Law School of Louisville, Kentucky, in 1858, and that city has been his home ever since. He rose rapidly in his profession; and he later served a single term in the Kentucky legislature, and two terms in the lower House of Congress. President Cleveland appointed Mr. Winchester United States Minister to Switzerland, in 1885, and the next four years he resided at Berne. While in Switzerland Mr. Winchester was an ardent student of the country's history and a keen observer of its aspects and institutions. On his return to the United States he wrote his well-known book, The Swiss Republic (Philadelphia, 1891). A fire his publishers, the Lippincotts, suffered shortly after his volume was issued, destroyed the unsold copies, and the small first edition was soon exhausted. The work has thus become exceedingly scarce.

Bibliography. National Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York, 1906, v. xiii); General Catalogue of Centre College.

[Pg 308]


[From The Swiss Republic (Philadelphia, 1891)]

The Lake of Geneva is the largest of Western Europe, being fifty-seven miles long, and its greatest width nine miles; it has its storms, its waves, and its surge; now placid as a mirror, now furious as the Atlantic; at times a deep-blue sea curling before the gentle waves, then a turbid ocean dark with the mud and sand from its lowest depths; the peasants on its banks still laugh at the idea of there being sufficient cordage in the world to reach the bottom of the Genfer-See. It is eleven hundred and fifty-four feet above the sea, and having the same depth, its bottom coincides with the sea-level; the water is of such exceeding purity that when analyzed only 0.157 in 1000 contain foreign elements. The lake lies nearly in the form of a crescent stretching from the southwest towards the northeast. Mountains rise on every side, groups of the Alps of Savoy, Valais, and Jura. The northern or the Swiss shore is chiefly what is known as a cote, or a declivity that admits of cultivation, with spots of verdant pasture scattered at its feet and sometimes on its breast, with a cheery range of garden, chalet, wood, and spire; villas, hamlets, and villages seem to touch each other down by the banks, and to form but one town, whilst higher up, they peep out from among the vineyards or nestle under the shade of walnut-trees. At the foot of the lake is the white city of Geneva, of which Bancroft wrote, "Had their cause been lost, Alexander Hamilton would have retired with his bride to Geneva, where nature and society were in their greatest perfection." The city is divided into two parts by the Rhone as it glides out of the basin of the lake on its course towards the Mediterranean. The Arve pours its turbid stream into the Rhone soon after that river issues from the lake. The contrast between the two rivers is very striking, the one being as pure and limpid as the other is foul and muddy. The Rhone seems to scorn the alliance and keeps as long as possible unmingled with his dirty spouse; two miles below the place of their junction a difference and opposition between this ill-assorted couple is still observable; these, however, gradually abate by[Pg 309] long habit, till at last, yielding to necessity, and to the unrelenting law which joined them together, they mix imperfect union and flow in a common stream to the end of their course. At the head of the lake begins the valley of the Rhone, where George Eliot said, "that the very sunshine seemed dreary mid the desolation of ruin and of waste in this long, marshy, squalid valley; and yet, on either side of the weary valley are noble ranges of granite mountains, and hill resorts of charm and health...." Standing at almost any point on the Lake of Geneva, to the one side towers Dent-du-Midi, calm, proud, and dazzling, like a queen of brightness; on the other side is seen the Jura through her misty shroud extending in mellow lines, and a cloudless sky vying in depths of color with the azure waters. So graceful the outlines, so varied the details, so imposing the framework in which this lake is set, well might Voltaire exclaim, "Mon lac est le premier," (my lake is the first). For richness combined with grandeur, for softness around and impressiveness above, for a correspondence of contours on which the eye reposes with unwearied admiration, from the smiling aspect of fertility and cultivation at its lower extremity to the sublimity of a savage nature at its upper, no lake is superior to that of Geneva. Numberless almost are the distinguished men and women who have lived, labored, and died upon the shores of this fair lake; every spot has a tale to tell of genius, or records some history. In the calm retirement of Lausanne, Gibbon contemplated the decay of empires; Rousseau and Byron found inspiration on these shores; there is

"Clarens, sweet Clarens, birthplace of deep love!
Thine air is the young breath of passionate thought;
Thy trees take root in love."

Here is Chillon, with its great white wall sinking into the deep calm of the water, while its very stones echo memorable events, from the era of barbarism in 830, when Count Wala, who had held command of Charlemagne's forces, was incarcerated within the tower of this desolate rock during the reign of Louis le Debonnaire, to the imprisonment of the Salvation Army captain.

[Pg 310]

"Lake Leman lies by Chillon's walls;
A thousand feet in depth below,
Its massy waters meet and flow;
Below the surface of the lake
The dark vault lies"

where Bonnivard, the prior of St. Victor and the great asserter of the independence of Geneva, was found when the castle was wrested from the Duke of Savoy by the Bernese.


Thomas Marshall Green, journalist and historian, was born near Danville, Kentucky, November 23, 1836, the son of Judge John Green, an early Kentucky jurist of repute, who died when his son was but two years old. Green was graduated from Centre College, Danville, in what is now known as the famous class of '55, which included several men afterwards distinguished. In 1856 Green joined the staff of the Frankfort Commonwealth, then a political journal of wide influence; and in the following year he became editor of that paper. He left the Commonwealth in 1860, to become editor of the Maysville Eagle, of which he made a pronounced success, its screams smacking not at all of the dignified days of its first editors, the Collinses, father and son. His Historic Families of Kentucky (Cincinnati, 1889), gave him a place among Kentucky historians, but the late Colonel John Mason Brown, of Louisville, gave to Green his greatest opportunity when he published his The Political Beginnings of Kentucky (Louisville, 1889). This work of Colonel Brown's was, in effect, an avowed vindication of the reputation of his grandfather, John Brown, first United States Senator from Kentucky, who, in the stormy days in which his lot had been cast, had been violently attacked[Pg 311] for his alleged connection with the Spanish Conspiracy of Aaron Burr, which was charged in a controversy running through many years of violent disputation, to have been an attempt in connection with General James Wilkinson, Judges Sebastian, Wallace, and Innes of the Kentucky Court of Appeals and others to detach Kentucky from her allegiance to the United States, and annex her territory to the Spanish dominions of the South and South-west, through which the much-desired free navigation of the Mississippi would be assured. Colonel Brown was a brilliant man of unusual scholarly attainments and deeply read in American history. These qualities with his large legal training enabled him to present a strong case in the vindication of his grandfather's reputation. His arguments, theories, and proofs were illuminating, able, and to many minds most convincing, while they fell with small effect upon Green and many others who held the opposite view. For this reason Green wrote and published The Spanish Conspiracy (Cincinnati 1891), a wonderfully well informed and clever work, and the one upon which he takes his place among Western historians. Students who would be fully informed as to the many phases—the charges and matter relied upon for defense, pro and con, in this bitter controversy which marshalled Kentucky into two hostile camps, whose alignments were more or less maintained through many strenuous years—must study these two books. They present the last word on either side. Colonel Brown's untimely death, which occurred in 1890, some months before the appearance of Green's book, probably lost Kentucky a reply to the Maysville historian that would have added to the flood of light thrown on this early and vital crisis. The Spanish Conspiracy was supplemented and supported in its conclusions by Mr. Anderson C. Quisenberry's The Life and Times of Hon. Humphrey Marshall (Winchester, Kentucky,[Pg 312] 1892). Thomas M. Green died at Danville, Kentucky, April 7, 1904.

Bibliography. Biographical Encyclopaedia of Kentucky (Cincinnati, 1878); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1910, v, xv).


[From The Spanish Conspiracy (Cincinnati, 1891)]

The grief of the reader in learning from the Political Beginnings, that Humphrey Marshall was "violent, irreligious and profane," will be mollified by the assurance given in the same work that Harry Innes "was a sincerely religious man." It might with equal truth have been stated that Caleb Wallace, who had abandoned the Presbyterian pulpit to go into politics, kept up his church relations, and practiced his devotions with the utmost regularity. Sebastian also, who had cast off the gown of the Episcopal ministry in his pursuit of the "flesh pots of Egypt," continued, it is believed, the exercise of all religious observations, and, in the depth of his piety, deemed a treasonable overture entirely too good to be communicated to an infidel. While John Brown, who had absorbed faith as he sat under the very droppings of the sanctuary, it will be cheerfully conceded was the most devout of the four. On the other hand, John Wood, one of the editors of the Western World, whom they afterwards bought, was a reprobate; and young Joseph M. Street, whom they could neither bribe nor intimidate, and the attempt to assassinate whom proved a failure, was a sinner. It is distressing to think that, like Gavin Hamilton, the latter "drank, and swore, and played at cards." It may be that the wickedness of the editors of the Western World, and the contemplation of their own saintliness, justified in the eyes of the four Christian jurists and statesmen the several little stratagems they devised, and paid Littell for introducing into his "Narrative," in order to obtain the advantage of the wicked editors in the argument. The contrast of their characters made innocent those little mutilations by Innes of his own letter to Randolph! The same process of reasoning made laudable John Brown's suppression of his[Pg 313] Muter letter, his assertion that it was identical with the "sliding letter," and his claim that the acceptance of Gardoqui's proposition would have been consistent with the alleged purpose to make some future application for the admission of Kentucky into the new Union! While the suppression of the resolution of Wallace and Wilkinson in the July convention, and the declaration that such a motion never was made, in order to prove the unhappy editors to be liars, became as praiseworthy as the spoiling of the Egyptians by the Israelites! The scene of those four distinguished gentlemen seated around a table, with a prayer-book in the center, planning the screen for themselves and the discomfiture of the editors, would be a subject worthy of the brush of a Hogarth.


Forceythe Willson, "the William Blake of Western letters," was born at Little Genesee, New York, April 10, 1837, the elder brother of the latest Republican governor of Kentucky, Augustus E. Willson. When Forceythe was nine years old, his family packed their household goods upon an "ark," or Kentucky flatboat, at Pittsburgh, and drifted down the Ohio river, landing at Maysville, Kentucky, where they resided for a year, and in which town the future governor of Kentucky was born. In 1847 the Willsons removed to Covington, Kentucky, and there Forceythe's education was begun. The family lived at Covington for six years, at the end of which time Forceythe entered Harvard University, but an attack of tuberculosis compelled him to leave without his degree. He returned to the West, making his home at New Albany, Indiana, a little town just across the Ohio river from Louisville. A year later Willson joined the editorial staff of the Louisville Journal, and together he and Prentice courted the muse and defended the cause of the Union. Willson's masterpiece, The Old Sergeant, was[Pg 314] the "carrier's address" for January 1, 1863, printed anonymously on the front page of the Journal. The author's name was withheld until Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes pronounced it the best ballad the war had produced, when Willson was heralded as its author. The Old Sergeant recites an almost literally true story, and it is wonderfully well done. In the fall of 1863 Willson was married to the New Albany poet, Elizabeth C. Smith, and they removed to Cambridge, Massachusetts, where the future executive of the Commonwealth of Kentucky was a student in Harvard University. The Willsons purchased a home near Lowell's, and they were soon on friendly terms with all of the famous New England writers. In 1866 The Old Sergeant and Other Poems appeared at Boston, but it did not make an appeal to the general public. Forceythe Willson died at Alfred Centre, New York, February 2, 1867, but his body was brought back to Indiana, and buried on the banks of the Whitwater river. Willson believed it quite possible for the living to hold converse with the dead, and this, with other strange beliefs, entered largely into his poetry.

Bibliography. His authoritative biographer, Mr. John James Piatt, the Ohio poet, has written illuminatingly of this rare fellow, with his "almond-shaped eyes," as Dr. Holmes called them, and his Oriental look and manner, in The Atlantic Monthly (March, 1875); Lexington Leader (September 13, 1908). His brother, Hon. Augustus E. Willson, will shortly utter the final word concerning him and his work.


[From The Old Sergeant and Other Poems (Boston, 1867)]

The Carrier cannot sing to-day the ballads
With which he used to go,
Rhyming the glad rounds of the happy New Years
[Pg 315] That are now beneath the snow:
For the same awful and portentous Shadow
That overcast the earth,
And smote the land last year with desolation,
Still darkens every hearth.
And the carrier hears Beethoven's mighty death-march
Come up from every mart;
And he hears and feels it breathing in his bosom,
And beating in his heart.
And to-day, a scarred and weather-beaten veteran,
Again he comes along,
To tell the story of the Old Year's struggles
In another New Year's song.
And the song is his, but not so with the story;
For the story, you must know,
Was told in prose to Assistant-Surgeon Austin,
By a soldier of Shiloh;
By Robert Burton, who was brought up on the Adams,
With his death-wound in his side;
And who told the story to the Assistant-Surgeon,
On the same night that he died.
But the singer feels it will better suit the ballad,
If all should deem it right,
To tell the story as if what it speaks of
Had happened but last night.
"Come a little nearer, Doctor—thank you—let me take the cup:
Draw your chair up—draw it closer—just another little sup!
Maybe you may think I'm better; but I'm pretty well used up—
Doctor, you've done all you could do, but I'm just a-going up!
"Feel my pulse, sir, if you want to, but it ain't much use to try—"
[Pg 316] "Never say that," said the Surgeon, as he smothered down a sigh;
"It will never do, old comrade, for a soldier to say die!"
"What you say will make no difference, Doctor, when you come to die."
"Doctor, what has been the matter?" "You were very faint, they say;
You must try to get to sleep now." "Doctor, have I been away?"
"Not that anybody knows of!" "Doctor—Doctor, please to stay!
There is something I must tell you, and you won't have long to stay!
"I have got my marching orders, and I'm ready now to go;
Doctor, did you say I fainted?—but it couldn't ha' been so—
For as sure as I'm a Sergeant, and was wounded at Shiloh,
I've this very night been back there, on the old field of Shiloh!
"This is all that I remember: The last time the Lighter came,
And the lights had all been lowered, and the noises much the same,
He had not been gone five minutes before something called my name.
'Orderly Sergeant—Robert Burton!'—just that way it called my name.
"And I wondered who could call me so distinctly and so slow,
Knew it couldn't be the Lighter—he could not have spoken so—
And I tried to answer, 'Here, sir!' but I couldn't make it go;
For I couldn't move a muscle, and I couldn't make it go!
"Then I thought: It's all a nightmare, all a humbug and a bore;
Just another foolish grape-vine[25]—and it won't come any more;
"But it came, sir, notwithstanding, just the same way as before:
'Orderly Sergeant—Robert Burton!'—even plainer than before.
"That is all that I remember, till a sudden burst of light,
And I stood beside the River, where we stood that Sunday night,
Waiting to be ferried over to the dark bluffs opposite,
When the river was perdition and all hell was opposite!—
[Pg 317]
"And the same old palpitation came again in all its power,
And I heard a Bugle sounding, as from some celestial Tower;
And the same mysterious voice said: 'It is the eleventh hour!
Orderly Sergeant—Robert Burton—it is the eleventh hour!'
"Doctor Austin!—what day is this?" "It is Wednesday night, you know."
"Yes—to-morrow will be New Year's, and a right good time below!
What time is it, Doctor Austin?" "Nearly Twelve." "Then don't you go!
Can it be that all this happened—all this—not an hour ago!
"There was where the gunboats opened on the dark rebellious host;
And where Webster semicircled his last guns upon the coast;
There were still the two log-houses, just the same, or else their ghosts—
And the same old transport came and took me over—or its ghost!
"And the old field lay before me all deserted far and wide;
There was where they fell on Prentiss—there McClernand met the tide;
There was where stem Sherman rallied, and where Hurlbut's heroes died—
Lower down, where Wallace charged them, and kept charging till he died.
"There was where Lew Wallace showed them he was of the canny kin,
There was where old Nelson thundered, and where Rousseau waded in;
There McCook sent 'em to breakfast, and we all began to win—
There was where the grape-shot took me, just as we began to win.
"Now, a shroud of snow and silence over everything was spread;
[Pg 318] And but for this old blue mantle and the old hat on my head,
I should not have even doubted, to this moment, I was dead—
For my footsteps were as silent as the snow upon the dead!
"Death and silence! Death and silence! all around me as I sped!
And behold, a mighty Tower, as if builded to the dead—
To the Heaven of the heavens, lifted up its mighty head,
Till the Stars and Stripes of Heaven all seemed waving from its head!
"Round and mighty-based it towered—up into the infinite—
And I knew no mortal mason could have built a shaft so bright;
For it shone like solid sunshine; and a winding stair of light,
Wound around it and around it till it wound clear out of sight!
"And, behold, as I approached it—with a rapt and dazzled stare—
Thinking that I saw old comrades just ascending the great Stair—
Suddenly the solemn challenge broke of—'Halt, and who goes there!'
'I'm a friend,' I said, 'if you are.' 'Then advance, sir, to the Stair!'
"I advanced! That sentry, Doctor, was Elijah Ballantyne!
First of all to fall on Monday, after we had formed the line!
'Welcome, my old Sergeant, welcome! Welcome by that countersign!'
And he pointed to the scar there, under this old cloak of mine!
"As he grasped my hand, I shuddered, thinking only of the grave;
But he smiled and pointed upward with a bright and bloodless glaive:
'That's the way, sir, to Head-quarters.' 'What Head-quarters!' 'Of the Brave.'
'But the great Tower?' 'That,' he answered, 'Is the way, sir, of the Brave!'
"Then a sudden shame came o'er me at his uniform of light;
[Pg 319] At my own so old and tattered, and at his so new and bright;
'Ah!' said he, 'you have forgotten the New Uniform to-night—
Hurry back, for you must be here at just twelve o'clock to-night!'
"And the next thing I remember, you were sitting there, and I—
Doctor—did you hear a footstep? Hark! God bless you all! Good by!
Doctor, please to give my musket and my knapsack, when I die,
To my Son—my Son that's coming—he won't get here till I die!
"Tell him his old father blessed him as he never did before—
And to carry that old musket"—Hark! a knock is at the door!
"Till the Union—" See! it opens! "Father! Father! speak once more!"
"Bless you!"—gasped the old, gray Sergeant, and he lay and said no more!


William Campbell Preston Breckinridge, orator and journalist, was born at Baltimore, Maryland, August 28, 1837, the son of Rev. Robert J. Breckinridge (1800-1871), and an own cousin of John C. Breckinridge (1821-1875). He was graduated from Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, in the famous class of '55, after which he studied medicine for a year, when he abandoned it to enter the Louisville Law School. Before he was of age he was admitted to the Fayette County Bar, and he was a member of it when he died. In July, 1862, he entered the Confederate Army as a captain in John Hunt Morgan's command; and during the last two years of the war was colonel of the Ninth Kentucky Cavalry. The war over, Colonel Breckinridge returned to Lexington and became editor of The Observer and Reporter, which he relinquished a few years later in order to devote his entire[Pg 320] attention to the law. In 1884 Colonel Breckinridge was elected to the lower House of Congress from the Ashland district, and he took his seat in December, 1885, which was the first session of the Forty-ninth Congress. One of his colleagues from Kentucky was the present Governor of the Commonwealth, James B. McCreary; another was John G. Carlise, who was chosen speaker over Thomas B. Reed of Maine. Colonel Breckinridge served ten years in the House, closing his career there in the Fifty-third Congress. In Washington he won a wide reputation as a public speaker, being commonly characterized as "the silver tongue orator from Kentucky." In 1894, after the most bitter congressional campaign of recent Kentucky history, he was defeated for re-election; and two years later as the "sound money" candidate he again met defeat, Evan E. Settle, who was also known in Congress as a very eloquent orator, and who hailed from the Kentucky county of "Sweet Owen," triumphing over him. Colonel Breckinridge was never again a candidate for public office. In 1897 he resumed his newspaper work, becoming chief editorial writer on The Lexington Herald, which paper was under the management of his son, Mr. Desha Breckinridge, the present editor. During the last eight years of his life Colonel Breckinridge achieved a new and fresh fame as a writer of large information upon State and national affairs. Simplicity was the goal toward which he seemed to strive in his discussions of great and small questions. His articles upon the Goebel tragedy were really State papers of importance. Upon more than one occasion his editorial utterances were wired to a New York paper, appearing simultaneously in that paper and in his own. He declined several offers to become editor of metropolitan newspapers. While at the present time Colonel Breckinridge is remembered by the great common people as an orator of unsurpassed[Pg 321] gifts, and while a great memorial mass of legends have grown about his name, it is as a writer of real ability, who had all the requisites and inclinations of a man of letters save one of the chief essentials: leisure. When his speeches and writings are collected and his biography written his true position in the literature of Kentucky will be more clearly and generally appreciated than it now is. Colonel Breckinridge died at Lexington, Kentucky, November 19, 1904.

Bibliography. The eulogy of John Rowan Allen is the finest summing up of Colonel Breckinridge's life and labors (Lexington Leader, November 23, 1904); Kentucky Eloquence, edited by Bennett H. Young (Louisville, Kentucky, 1907). His papers, together with those of his grandfather and father, are now in possession of the Library of Congress.


[From The Lexington Herald (Christmas Day, 1899)]

"And they told him that Jesus of Nazareth passeth by." And this has been the universal truth since those days—the one unchangeable, pregnant, vital truth of development, of progress, of civilization, of happiness, of freedom, of charity. The perpetual presence, the ceaseless personal influence, the potent force of His continual association alone renders human history intelligible or makes possible the solution of any grave problem which man meets in his upward march to better life and more wholesome conditions. And to-day the accepted anniversary of the birth of the "carpenter's son" is the one day whose celebration is in all civilized nations, among all independent people and in all learned tongues. The world has not yet accepted Him; there are nations very large in numbers, very old in histories, very devout in their accepted religions, which have not accepted His claim to be divine, nor bowed to the reign of His supreme authority. And the contrast between such nations and those who have accepted His claim and modeled their laws upon His teachings form the profoundest reason for the verity of that claim and the beneficence of those teachings.

[Pg 322]

Millions to-day will assemble themselves in their accustomed houses of worship, and with songs and instruments of music, with garlands and wreaths, with glad countenances and uplifted hearts, render adoration to the carpenter's son of Nazareth; adoration to the lowly Jew who was born in a manger and died upon a cross. Many millions will not attend worship, but still render unconscious testimony to the wondrous power which He has exercised through the centuries in the glad happiness which springs from conditions which are only possible under His teachings and by the might of His perpetual presence. They will not know that "Jesus of Nazareth passeth by," but the day is full of joy, the homes are radiant with happiness, the cheer is jovial and the laughter jocund, the eye brightens under the glances of loved ones—because He has passed by and scattered love and charity with profuse prodigality along the pathway He trod.

He has walked through the gay hearts of little children, and joy has sprung up as wild flowers where His footsteps fell; He has lingered at the mother's bedside and ineffable love has filled the heart of her who felt His gentle presence. In carpenter shops like unto that in which He toiled for thirty years, in humble homes, in the counting rooms of bankers, in the offices of lawyers and doctors, in the charitable institutions which are memorials of His teachings, He has passed by; those within may not have been conscious thereof; they were possibly too absorbed to feel the sweet and pervading fragrance of the omnipotent force which He always exerts; yet over them and their thoughts He did exert that irresistible power; and to-day the world is better, sweeter, more joyful, more loving, because of Him.

It is in its secular aspect that we venture to submit these thoughts; it is His transforming power secularly to which we call attention this sweet Christmas morning. "Christ the Lord Has Risen," but it is Jesus the man—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of the carpenter, the new teacher of universal brotherhood, the man who went about doing good; the obscure Jew who brought the new and nobler era of charity and forgiveness and love into actual existence that The Herald, a mere secular paper, desires to hold up.

And peculiarly to that aspect of His life that was social; the[Pg 323] friend of Lazarus; the diner at the table of Zaccheus; the pleased and kindly guest at the wedding of Cana; the man who leaned His head on the breast of His friend, the simple gentleman who took little children in His arms and loved them; the obedient son, the loyal friend, the forbearing associate, the forgiving master, the tender healer of disease, the loving man who was touched with a sense of all our infirmities.

To-day with jollity let us turn the water of our common lives into the wine of sweet domestic happiness; let us take the children of misfortune to our breast; let us be loyal to our weaker friends; let us share our fullness with our brethren who are lean in this world's goods, and, shedding smiles and kind words, and pleasant phrases through the day, it may be that some stricken heart made glad may say: "Jesus of Nazareth passeth by."


General Basil Wilson Duke, historian of Morgan's men, was born near Georgetown, Kentucky, May 28, 1838. He was educated at Georgetown and Centre Colleges, after which he studied law at Transylvania University. He was admitted to the bar, in 1858, and entered upon the practice at St. Louis. In 1861 he was a member of the Kentucky legislature; and in June of that year he married the sister of John Hunt Morgan and enlisted in Morgan's command. Upon Morgan's death, in 1864, General Duke succeeded him as leader of the band. After the war he settled at Louisville, Kentucky, as a lawyer, and that city is his home today. From 1875 to 1880 General Duke was commonwealth's attorney for the Fifth Judicial District; and since 1895 he has been a commissioner of Shiloh Military Park. His Morgan's Cavalry (Cincinnati, 1867; New York, 1906), is the authoritative biography of the noted partisan leader and history of his intrepid band. General Duke was one of the editors of[Pg 324] The Southern Bivouac, a Louisville magazine, from 1885 to 1887. His History of the Bank of Kentucky (Louisville, 1895), filled a gap in Kentucky history; and his Reminiscences (New York, 1911), was a delightful volume of enormous proportions.

Bibliography. Lawyers and Lawmakers of Kentucky (Chicago, 1897); The Bookman (December, 1907).


[From Morgan's Cavalry (Cincinnati, 1867)]

General Morgan had more of those personal qualities which make a man's friends devoted to him than any one I have ever known. He was himself very warm and constant in the friendships which he formed. It seemed impossible for him to do enough for those to whom he was attached, or to ever give them up. His manner, when he wished, prepossessed every one in his favor. He was generally more courteous and attentive to his inferiors than to his equals and superiors. This may have proceeded in a great measure from his jealousy of dictation and impatience of restraint, but was the result also of warm and generous feeling. His greatest faults arose out of his kindness and easiness of disposition, which rendered it impossible for him to say or do unpleasant things, unless when under the influence of strong prejudice or resentment. This temperament made him a too lax disciplinarian, and caused him to be frequently imposed upon. He was exceedingly and unfeignedly modest. For a long time he sought, in every way, to avoid the applause and ovations which met him everywhere in the South, and he never learned to keep a bold countenance when receiving them.

His personal appearance and carriage were striking and graceful. His features were eminently handsome and adapted to the most pleasing expressions. His eyes were small, of a grayish blue color, and their glances keen and thoughtful. His figure on foot or on horseback was superb. He was exactly six feet in height, and although not at all corpulent, weighed one hundred and eighty-five pounds. His form was perfect and the rarest combination of strength, activity, and grace. His constitution[Pg 325] seemed impervious to the effects of privation and exposure, and it was scarcely possible to perceive that he suffered from fatigue or lack of sleep.

Men are not often born who can wield such an influence as he exerted, apparently without an effort; who can so win men's hearts and stir their blood. He will, at least, be remembered until the Western cavalrymen and their children have all died. The bold riders who lived in the border-land, whose every acre he made historic, will leave many a story of his audacity and wily skill.


Henry Watterson, the foremost Kentucky journalist, and one of the most widely known newspaper men in the United States, was born at Washington, D. C., February 16, 1840. This accident of birth was due to the fact that his father, Harvey McGee Watterson, with his wife, was in Washington as a member of the lower house of Congress from his native state, Tennessee. In consequence of defective vision, Henry Watterson was educated by private tutors; but he did attend the Episcopal School at Philadelphia for a short time. At the age of eighteen years he became a reporter on the Washington States; but, in 1861, he returned to Nashville, Tennessee, to edit the Republican Banner. Watterson was a staff officer in the Confederate Army, and in 1864 chief of scouts for General Joseph E. Johnston, but throughout the war he was also editing a newspaper. After the war he married and revived the Banner, which he edited for about two years, when he removed to Louisville, Kentucky, and succeeded George D. Prentice as editor of the Journal. In the following year Watterson, with Walter N. Haldeman, consolidated the Journal, Courier, and Daily Democrat to form The Courier-Journal. The first issue of this paper appeared November 8, 1868, and Colonel Watterson has been its[Pg 326] editor ever since. He has made it the greatest newspaper in Kentucky, if not in the South or West, and one of the best known papers printed in the English language. His editorials are unequalled by any other writer in America, either from the point of thought or construction; and his style is always more interesting than his substance. Colonel Watterson has held but one public office, having been a member of the Forty-fourth Congress, in 1876, and the personal friend and most ardent supporter of Samuel J. Tilden in the infamous Hayes-Tilden controversy of that year. Colonel Watterson has been a delegate-at-large from Kentucky in many Democratic presidential conventions, in all of which bodies he has been a conspicuous figure. He is famous as a journalist, orator, and author. His eulogy upon Abraham Lincoln has been listened to in almost every state in the Union, and it is his best known effort in oratory. Though now past his three score years and ten, Colonel Watterson is as vigorous and vindictive as ever in the handling of public questions and of his legion of enemies, as the country witnessed in the presidential campaign of 1912. He edited Oddities of Southern Life and Character (Boston, 1882); and he has written The History of the Spanish-American War (Louisville, 1898); The Compromises of Life: Lectures and Addresses (New York, 1902), containing his ablest speeches delivered upon many occasions; and Old London Town (Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 1911), a group of his European letters to The Courier-Journal, edited by Joseph Fort Newton. Colonel Watterson has an attractive country home near Louisville, "Mansfield," but in recent years his winters have been spent at Naples-on-the-Gulf, in Florida, and his summers in "grooming presidential candidates!"

Bibliography. The Bookman (February, 1904); Harper's Weekly (November 12, 1904); The Booklovers Magazine (March, 1905).

[Pg 327]


[From Old London Town, and Other Travel Sketches (Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 1910)]

London, less than any of the great capitals of the world—even less than Berlin—has changed its aspects in the last four decades of alteration and development. During the Second Empire, and under the wizard hand of Baron Hauseman, a new Paris sprang into existence. We know what has happened in New York and Chicago. But London, except the Thames Embankment and the opening of a street here and there betwixt the City and the West End—the mid-London of Soho and the Strand—is very much the London I became acquainted with nearly forty years ago. To be sure many of the ancient landmarks, such as Temple Bar, the Cock and the Cheshire Cheese, have gone to the ash heap of the forgotten, whilst some imposing hostelries have risen in the region about Trafalgar Square; but, in the main, the biggest village of Christendom has lost none of its familiar earmarks, so that the exile set down anywhere from Charing Cross and Picadilly Circus to the bustling region of the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street, blindfold, would, the instant the bandage were removed from his eyes, exclaim, "It is London!"

Yes, it is London; the same old London; the same old cries in the street; the same old whitey-brown atmosphere; even the same old Italian organ-grinders, the tunes merely a trifle varied. Nor yet without its charm, albeit to me of a rather ghostly, reminiscental sort. I came here in 1866, with a young wife and a roll of ambitious manuscript, found work to do and a publisher, lived for a time in the clouds of two worlds, that of Bohemia, of which the Savage Club was headquarters, and that of the New Apocalypse of Science which eddied about the School of Mines in Jermyn Street and the Fortnightly Review, then presided over by George Henry Lewes, my nearest friend and sponsor the late Professor Huxley. I alternated my days and nights between a somewhat familiar intimacy with Spencer and Tyndall and a wholly familiar intimacy with Tom Robertson and Andrew Halliday. Artemus Ward was in London and it was to him that[Pg 328] I owed these later associations. Sir Henry Irving had not made his mark. Sir Charles Wyndham was still in America. There were Keenes and Kembles yet upon the stage. Charles Matthews ruled the roost of Comedy. George Eliot was in the glory of her powers and her popularity. Thackeray was gone, but Charles Dickens lived and wrote. Bulwer-Lytton lived and wrote. Wilkie Collins and Charles Reade vied with one another for current favor. Modern Frenchification had invaded neither the restaurants nor the music halls. Evans's Coffee House (Pendennis core of Harmony) prevailed after midnight in Covent Garden Market. In short, the solidarities of Old England, along with its roast, succulent, abundant and intact.

To me London was Mecca. The look of it, the very smell of it, was inspiration. Incidentally—I don't mind saying—there were some cakes and ale. The nights were jolly enough down in the Adelphi, where the barbarians of the Savage Club held high revel, and George Augustus Sala was Primate, and Edmund Yates and Tom Robertson were High Priests. Temple Bar blocked the passage from Belgravia to the Bank of England, and there was no Holborn Viaduct nor Victorian Embankment.

Aye, long ago! How far away it seems, and how queer! To me it was the London of story-books; of Whittington and his cat and Goody Two-Shoes and the Canterbury Shades; of Otway and Marlowe and Chatterton; of Nell Gwynne and Dick Steele and poor Goldsmith; of all that was bizarre and fanciful in history, that was strange and romantic in legend; and not the London of the Tower, the Museum and Westminster Abbey; not the London of Cremorne Gardens, newly opened, nor the Argyle Rooms, which should have been burned to the ground before they were opened at all.

Since then I have been in and out of London many times. I have been amused here and bored here; but give me back my old fool's paradise and I shall care for naught else.

One may doubt which holds him closest, the London of History or the London of Fiction, or that London which is a mingling of both, and may be called simply the London of Literature, in which Oliver Goldsmith carouses with Tom Jones, and Harry Fielding discusses philosophy with the Vicar of Wakefield, where[Pg 329] Nicholas Nickleby makes so bold as to present himself to Mr. William Makepeace Thackeray and to ask his intercession in favor of a poor artist, the son of a hairdresser of the name of Turner in Maiden Lane, and even where "Boz," as he passes through Longacre, is tripped up by the Artful Dodger, and would perchance fall upon the siding if not caught in the friendly arms of Sir Richard Steele on his way to pay a call upon the once famous beauty, the Lady Beatrix Esmond.

But yesterday I strolled into Mitre Court, and threading my way through the labyrinth of those dingy old law chambers known as the Middle and Inner Temple, found myself in the little graveyard of the Temple Church and by the side of the grave of Oliver Goldsmith. Though less than a stone's throw from Fleet Street and the Strand, the place is quiet enough, only a faint hum of wheels penetrating the cool precincts and gloomy walls. There, beneath three oblong slabs, put together like an outer stone coffin, lies the most richly endowed of all the vagabonds, with the simple but sufficient legend:

"Here lies Oliver Goldsmith,
"Born Nov. 10th, 1728. Died April 4th, 1774."

to tell a story which for all its vagrancy and folly, is somewhat dear to loving hearts. He died leaving many debts and a few friends. He lived a lucky-go-devil, who could squander in a night of debauch more than he could earn in a month of labor. Yet he gave us the good Primrose and The Deserted Village and The Traveler, and many a care-dispelling screed beside.

The Frenchman would say "his destiny." The less fanciful Briton, "his temperament." Poor Noll! He seemed to know himself fairly well in spite of his dissipations and his vanity, and he sleeps sound enough now, perhaps as soundly as the rest of those who in life held him in a rather equivocal admiration and affectionate contempt. There are a few other tombs—an effigy or two—round about, the weird old Chapel of the Templars, shut in by great walls from the streets beyond, to keep them solemn company. For Goldsmith, at least, there seems a fitness; for his life, and such labor as he did, eddied round these sad precincts. Nigh at hand was the Mitre tavern, across the way the[Pg 330] Cock, and down the street the Cheshire Cheese. Without the Vandal has been busy enough, within all remains as it was the day they buried him. Perhaps he was not a desirable visiting acquaintance. I dare say he was rather a trying familiar friend. Pen-craft and purse-making are often wide apart. The charm of authorship ends in most cases upon the printed page. The man carries his sentiment in a globule of ink and it evaporates by exposure to the atmosphere of the world of action. The song of Dickens died by its own fireside. Kipling, for all his word-painting, is hardly a miracle of grace. Why should one wish to have known Goldsmith, or grudge him his place by the side of the great old Doctor, and Burke, and Reynolds, and Garrick? He lived his own life, and, though it was not very clean and wholly unprosperous, perhaps he enjoyed it. He left us some rich fruitage dangling over a wall, which may well conceal all else. Of the dead, no ill! Their faults to the past. The rest to Eternity!

Gradually, but surely, a new London is showing itself above the debris of the old. Miles of roundabout are reduced by short cuts. Thoroughfares are ruthlessly cut through sacred precincts and landmarks obliterated to make room for imposing edifices and widened streets. In the end, London will be rebuilt to rival Paris in the splendor, without the uniformity of its architecture. The grime will, of course, attach itself in time to the modern city as it did in the ancient, so that the London that is to be will grow old to the coming generations as the London that was grew old to the generations that went before.

"To-morrow and to-morrow and to-morrow
Creeps on this petty pace from day to day,
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools the way to dusty death."

Ever and ever the old times, the dear old times! Were they really any better than these? I don't think so—we only fancy them so. They had their displacements. It was then, as now, "eat, drink, and be merry, for to-morrow ye die," life the same old walking shadow, the same old play, or, lagging superfluous, or laughing his hour upon the stage and seen no more, the same[Pg 331] old

"... tale told by an idiot,
Full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."

Somehow, London has a tendency to call up such reflections; sombre, serious itself, to provoke moralizing, albeit a turmoil, with incessant flashes of light and shade, the contrasts the vividest and most precipitate on earth, deep and penetrating, even from Hyde Park corner to St. Martins-in-the-Field, and on eastward beyond the Tower and into the purlieus of Whitechapel and the solitudes of Bethnal Green.


Gilderoy Wells Griffin, essayist, was born at Louisville, Kentucky, March 6, 1840, the son of a merchant. He was educated in the University of Louisville, and admitted to the bar just as he attained his majority. He soon became private secretary for George D. Prentice, and this pointed his path from law to letters. Griffin was dramatic critic of the Louisville Journal until after Prentice's death; and his first book was a biographical study of the great editor. His Studies in Literature (Baltimore, 1870), a small group of essays, was followed by the final edition of Prenticeana (Philadelphia, 1871), which he revised and to which he also contributed a new sketch of Prentice. Griffin was appointed United States Consul to Copenhagen, in 1871. His Memoir of Col. Charles S. Todd (Philadelphia, 1872), was an excellent piece of writing. The most tangible result of his sojourn in Copenhagen was My Danish Days (1875), one of the most delightful of his works. In Denmark his most intimate friend, perhaps, was Hans Christian Anderson. His A Visit to Stratford[Pg 332] (1875), was worth while. The year following its publication, Griffin was transferred to a similar position in the Samoan Islands, and he left in manuscript a work on the Islands which has never been published. In 1879 Griffin was again transferred, this time being sent to Aukland, New Zealand, where he remained until 1884; and the time of his departure witnessed the appearance of his last work, New Zealand: Her Commerce and Resources (Wellington, N. Z., 1884). President Arthur sent him as consul to Sydney, which post he held for seven years. Griffin's death occurred while he was visiting his old home, Louisville, Kentucky, October 21, 1891. His brother was the step-father of the famous Mary Anderson, the former actress, and she has a goodly word for the memory of Griffin in her autobiography. He was a patron of the drama, a faithful and far-seeing diplomat, and a very able writer. His wife, Alice M. Griffin, published a volume of Poems (Cincinnati, 1864).

Bibliography. The Courier-Journal (October 22, 1891); A Few Memories, by Mary Anderson de Navarro (London, 1896).


[From Studies in Literature (Baltimore, 1870)]

The Gypsies are wholly ignorant of their origin, and have kept but an imperfect record of their migrations; but it is evident that they are a distinct race of people. Like the Jews, they have no country of their own, and are scattered over all parts of the globe. Time has made little or no change in their peculiarities. They have the same language, personal appearance, habits, and customs, that they had centuries ago. The name of Gypsies (meaning Egyptians) is doubtless an incorrect one. At least we know of nothing to justify them in the assumption of the title. In Italy they are called "Zingari," in Germany "Zigeuner," in Spain "Gitanos," in Turkey "Tchengenler," in Persia "Sisech Hindu," in Sweden "Tartars," and in France "Bohemiens."

Borrow expresses the opinion that the name of Gypsies originated[Pg 333] among the priests and learned men of Europe, who expected to find in Scripture some account of their origin and some clew to their skill in the occult sciences.

Simson, the author of a recent work entitled the History of the Gypsies, believes that they are a mixture of the shepherd-kings and the native Egyptians, who formed part of the "mixed multitude" mentioned in the Biblical account of the expulsion of the Jews from Egypt. Grellman, however, traces their origin to India. He says that they belong to the Soodra caste. Vulcanius describes them simply as robbers and outlaws, and Hervas regards their language as "a mere jargon of banditti."

Their keen black eyes, swarthy complexion, long raven locks, high cheek-bones, and projecting lower jaws evidently indicate Asiatic origin. It is certain that neither their language nor physiognomy are African. It is argued that if really Egyptians, they would in all probability have preserved a religion, or some of the forms of worship so characteristic of the descendants of that people; whereas, the Gypsies have no religion at all.

Indeed, it is a proverb with them that "the Gypsy church was built of lard, and the dogs ate it."

Whether Egyptians or not, they are doubtless what they claim to be, "Rommany Chals," and not "Gorgios." Very few who have seen them will refuse to believe that they do not understand the art of making horse-shoes, and of snake-charming, fortunetelling, poisoning with the drows, and of singing such songs as the following:

"The Rommany chi
And the Rommany chal
Shall jaw tasaulor
To drab the bawlor,
And dook the gry
Of the farming rye.
"The Rommany churl
And the Rommany girl
To-morrow shall hie
To poison the sty,
And bewitch on the mead
The farmer's stead."
[Pg 334]


John Lancaster Spalding, the poet-priest, was born at Lebanon, Kentucky, June 2, 1840. He is a nephew of Archbishop Martin John Spalding. John L. Spalding was graduated from St. Mary's College, Maryland, in 1859; and a short time later he was ordained as a priest in the Roman Catholic church. In 1865 he was secretary to the bishop of Louisville; and four years later he built St. Augustine's church for the Catholic negroes of Louisville. In 1871 Spalding was chancellor of the diocese of Louisville. From 1872 to 1877 he was stationed in New York City. He was consecrated bishop of Peoria, Illinois, May 1, 1877, which position he held until 1908, when ill-health compelled his retirement. Bishop Spalding was appointed by President Roosevelt as one of the arbitrators to settle the anthracite coal strike of 1902, and this appointment brought him before the whole country for a time. In 1909 he was created titular archbishop of Scyphopolis. Bishop Spalding continues his residence at Peoria, but recently his health has broken so badly that his life has been despaired of more than once. For many years it has been his custom to spend his summers in Kentucky with his boyhood friends and neighbors. He is the author of The Life of the Most Rev. Martin John Spalding, Archbishop (New York, 1872); Essays and Reviews (1876); Religious Mission of the Irish People (1880); Lectures and Discourses (1882); America and Other Poems (1885); Education and the Higher Life (Chicago, 1891); The Poet's Praise (1891); Things of the Mind (Chicago, 1894); Means and End of Education; Thoughts and Theories of Life and Education (Chicago, 1897); Songs: Chiefly from the German (1896); God and the Soul; Opportunity and Other Essays (Chicago, 1901); Religion, Agnosticism, and Education (Chicago, 1902);[Pg 335] Aphorisms and Reflections (Chicago, 1901); Socialism and Labor (Chicago, 1902); Glimpses of Truth (Chicago, 1903); The Spalding Year Book (1905); Religion and Art, and other Essays (Chicago, 1905). Bishop Spalding's biography of his famous kinsman, Archbishop Spalding, is his finest prose work, and as a poet he has done some pleasing verse, most of which, of course, is marred by being woven into his religion.

Bibliography. Harper's Weekly (October 25, 1902); The Dial (January 1, 1904).


[From The Hesperian Tree, edited by J. J. Piatt (Columbus, Ohio, 1903)]

O snow-white blade, thou openest for me
So many a page filled with delightful lore
Where deathless minds have left the precious store
Of words that breathe and truth that makes us free.
To hold thee in my hand, or but to see
Thee lying on my desk, O ivory oar,
Waiting to drive my bark to any shore,
Is fortaste of fresh joy and liberty.
Thou bringest dreams of the Dark Continent
Where herded elephants in freedom roam,
Or blow their trumpets when they danger scent,
Or in wide rivers shoot the pearly foam,
Yet art of vital books all redolent,
Where highest thoughts have made themselves a home.

[Pg 336]


Nathaniel Southgate Shaler, the distinguished Harvard geologist, poet, historian, and sociologist, was born at Newport, Kentucky, February 20, 1841. He was graduated from Harvard in 1862, where he had the benefit of almost private instruction from the great Agassiz. Shaler returned to Kentucky, and for the next two years he served in the Union army. In 1864 he was appointed assistant in palentology at Harvard; and four years later he became assistant in zoology and geology in the Lawrence Scientific School and head of the department of palentology. In 1873 the Governor of Kentucky appointed Professor Shaler director of the Kentucky Geological Survey, and he devoted parts of the next seven years to this work. He was the most efficient State geologist Kentucky has ever known, and his work for the Survey pointed out the path trodden by his successors. His assistant, Professor John R. Proctor, followed him as Director, and he stands next to his chief in the work he accomplished. The Kentucky Geological Survey (1874-1880, 6 vols.), volume three of which, entitled A General Account of the Commonwealth of Kentucky (Cambridge, Mass., 1876), was written entirely by Shaler, are excellent memorials of the work he did for his native state. In 1884 Shaler was placed in charge of the Atlantic division of the United States Geological Survey; and in 1891 he was chosen dean of the Lawrence Scientific School at Harvard. This position he held until a year or two before his death. Dean Shaler published Thoughts on the Nature of Intellectual Property (Boston, 1878); Glaciers (Boston, 1881); The First Book of Geology (Boston, 1884); Kentucky: A Pioneer Commonwealth (Boston, 1885), the philosophy of Kentucky history summarized; Aspects of the Earth (New York, 1889); Nature and Man in America (New[Pg 337] York, 1891); The Story of Our Continent (Boston, 1892); Sea and Land (New York, 1892); The United States (New York, 1893); The Interpretation of Nature (Boston, 1893); Domesticated Animals (New York, 1895); American Highways (New York, 1896); Outlines of the Earth's History (New York, 1898); The Individual (New York, 1900); Elizabeth of England (Boston, 1903, five vols.), a "dramatic romance," celebrating "the spacious times of great Elizabeth"; The Neighbor (Boston, 1904); The Citizen (New York, 1904); Man and the Earth (New York, 1905); and From Old Fields (Boston, 1906), a book of short poems. Besides these books, Dean Shaler wrote hundreds of magazine articles, reports, scientific memoirs, miscellaneous essays. He died at Cambridge, Massachusetts, April 10, 1906, just as he was about to make ready for a final journey to Kentucky. Dean Shaler was loved and honored more at Harvard, perhaps, than any other teacher the University has ever known.

Bibliography. The World's Work (June, 1906); Science (June 8, 1906); The Autobiography of Nathaniel Southgate Shaler, with a Supplementary Memoir by his Wife, published posthumously (Boston, 1909), is a charming record of his days at Harvard and in Kentucky.


[From From Old Fields (Boston, 1906)]

Eighteen hundred and sixty-one:
There in the echo of Sumter's gun
Marches the host of the Orphan Brigade,
Lit by their banners, in hope's best arrayed.
Five thousand strong, never legion hath borne
Might as this bears it forth in that morn:
Hastings and Cressy, Naseby, Dunbar,
[Pg 338] Cowpens and Yorktown, Thousand Years' War,
Is writ on their hearts as onward afar
They shout to the roar of their drums.
Eighteen hundred and sixty-two:
Well have they paid to the earth its due.
Close up, steady! the half are yet here
And all of the might, for the living bear
The dead in their hearts over Shiloh's field—
Rich, O God, is thy harvest's yield!
Where faith swings the sickle, trust binds the sheaves,
To the roll of the surging drums.
Eighteen hundred and sixty-three:
Barring Sherman's march to the sea—
Shorn to a thousand; face to the foe
Back, ever back, but stubborn and slow.
Nineteen hundred wounds they take
In that service of Hell, yet the hills they shake
With the roar of their charge as onward they go
To the roll of their throbbing drums.
Eighteen hundred and sixty-four:
Their banners are tattered, and scarce twelve score,
Battered and wearied and seared and old,
Stay by the staves where the Orphans hold
Firm as a rock when the surges break—
Shield of a land where men die for His sake,
For the sake of the brothers whom they have laid low,
To the roll of their muffled drums.
Eighteen hundred and sixty-five:
The Devil is dead and the Lord is alive,
In the earth that springs where the heroes sleep,
And in love new born where the stricken weep.
That legion hath marched past the setting of sun:
Beaten? nay, victors: the realms they have won
Are the hearts of men who forever shall hear
The throb of their far-off drums.
[Pg 339]


[From The Autobiography of Nathaniel Southgate Shaler (Boston, 1909)]

I have referred above to Thomas F. Marshall, a man of singular attractiveness and talents with whom I had a curious relation. I first met him when I was about fourteen years of age, when he, for some time a congressman, had through drunkenness fallen into a curious half-abandoned mode of life. He was then an oldish fellow, but retained much of his youthful splendor. He was about six feet three inches high, but so well built that he did not seem large, until you stood beside him. His face, even when marred by drink, had something of majesty in it. Marshall, when I knew him, picked up a scanty living as a lecturer. When sober, which he often was for months at a time, his favorite subject was temperance. On this theme he was as eloquent as Gough; in his season of spree, he turned to history. The gradations were not sharp, for he would, as I have seen him, preach most admirably of the evil of drink while he supported himself in his fervent oratory with whiskey from a silver mug. In matters of history, he had read widely. One of his favorite themes was the mediæval history of Italy. I recall with a distinctness which shows the impressiveness of his discourses his story of Florence, so well told that ten years after, when I saw the town for the first time, the shape of it and of the neighboring places was curiously familiar. Along with some other youths, I noted down the dates of events as he gave them and looked them up. We never caught him in an error, though at times he was so drunk that he could hardly stand up. I have known many historians who doubtless much exceeded him in learning, but never another who seemed to have such a capacity for living in the events he narrated.

I had no sooner met "Tom" Marshall than we became friends. He at once took a curious fancy to me, talked to me as though we were of an age, and gave me my first chance of such contact with a man of learning and imagination. The relation, while on one side largely profitable to me, became embarrassing, for the unhappy man got the notion that I could stop his drinking if I[Pg 340] would stay with him. A number of times when he had his dipsomaniac fury upon him I found that by sitting by his bed and talking with him on some historical subject, or rather listening to his talk, he would apparently forget about his drink and in a few hours drop asleep and awake to be sober for some months.

Sometimes these quiet interviews were most interesting to me. I recall one of them when I found him in an attack of half delirium. His memory, always active, took him back to the days when he was in Congress and to the scene when he, a very young member of the House, had been chosen by some careful elders to lead an attack on John Quincy Adams. They, the elders, were to come to his support when he had drawn the enemy's fire. It all became so real to him, that he sprang out of bed and in his tattered nightgown gave, first his own speech with all the actions of a young orator, and then the deliberate, crushing rejoinder of his mighty antagonist. At the end of it he fell back upon his bed, cursing the villains who led him into the fight and left him to take the consequences.

My relations with Marshall continued until I went to Cambridge but my influence over his drinking gradually lessened as he sank lower, and his able mind began to be permanently clouded. When I had been some months at college, I espied the poor fellow in the street, carpet-bag in hand, evidently making for my quarters. I sent word by a messenger to my chum, Hyatt, to receive and care for him, but to say that I had left town, which was true, for I went at once to Greenfield, where I had friends. Hyatt was also to provide the wanderer with a suit of clothes and a railway ticket back to Kentucky. I stayed away until I learned that Marshall was on his way home. I have always been ashamed of my conduct in this matter, but the unhappy man was at that time of his degradation an impossible burthen for me to carry; once ensconced in my quarters it would have been impossible to provide him with a dignified exit, and there was no longer hope that I might reform him. Yet the cowardice of the action has grieved me to this day.

Two years afterwards, in 1862, I saw Marshall for the last time. I was with a column of troops going through the town of Versailles, Kentucky. He was seated in front of a bar-room,[Pg 341] with his chin upon the top of his cane. He was so far gone that the sight merely troubled his wits without affording him any explanation of what it meant. His bleared though still noble face stays in my memories as one of the saddest of those weary years.


[From the same]

Among the interesting and in a way shaping incidents of my boyhood, was a brief contact with Abraham Lincoln about 1856. He was coming on foot from the town of Covington; I was on horseback, and met him near the bridge over the Licking River. He asked the way to my grandfather's house, which was about a mile off. Attracted by his appearance, I dismounted and asked him to get on my horse, which he declined to do; so I walked beside him. Probably because he knew how to talk to a lad—few know the art, and those the large natures alone—we became at once friendly. When I had shown him into the house, I hung about to find his name. As I had never heard of Mr. Lincoln of Illinois, it was explained to me that he was the man who was "running against" the Little Giant. We lads all knew Stephen A. Douglas, who was so popular that farm tools were named for him: the Little Giant this and that of cornshellers or ploughs. While Mr. Lincoln was with my grandfather, my mother dined or supped with him. When she came home she said: "I have had a long talk with Mr. Lincoln, who is called an Abolitionist; if he is an Abolitionist, I am an Abolitionist." I well remember the horror with which this remark inspired the household: if my mother had said she was Satan, it could not have been worse. The droll part of the matter is that all the reasonable people about me were in heart haters of slavery. They saw and deplored its evils, and were full of fanciful schemes for making an end of it. But the name Abolitionist was abominated.

I never knew what brought Mr. Lincoln to my grandfather's house. It is likely that he came because a certain doctor of central Kentucky, an uncle of Mr. Lincoln, a widower, had recently married an aunt of mine, a widow. This union of two middle-aged people, each with large families, brought trouble; since family traditions were against divorce, a separation was effected[Pg 342] which had an amusing though tragic finish. When all other matters of property had been arranged and P. had betaken himself to his plantation in Mississippi, as an afterthought he set up a supplementary claim to a saddle mule belonging to my aunt which he had forgotten to demand in the settlement. This reopened the question, and it was determined in family council that the grasping doctor should not be satisfied. We boys had the notion that Mr. Lincoln's visit related to this episode of the mule, for shortly after the "critter" was sent with a servant by steamboat, to be delivered to the claimant at the landing of his plantation on the Mississippi River. In due time the negro returned and made report: It was that the unworthy suitor came with a group of his friends to witness his success, mounted, and started to ride away, but the beast, frisky from its long confinement, "stooped up behind," as the darkeys phrase it, and threw his master and killed him. Whether Lincoln had a hand in the negotiations which led to this finish or not, I am sure that the humor of it must have tickled him.


William Lightfoot Visscher, poet, was born at Owingsville, Kentucky, November 25, 1842. He was educated at the Bath Seminary, Owingsville, and graduated in law from the University of Louisville, but he never practiced. He was a soldier in the Civil War for four years. Colonel Visscher—which title he did not win upon the battlefield!—has been connected with more newspapers than he now cares to count; and he has written hundreds of verses which have appeared in periodicals and in book form. He is the author of five novels: Carlisle of Colorado; Way Out Yonder; Thou Art Peter; Fetch Over the Canoe (Chicago, 1908); and Amos Hudson's Motto. The first of these is the best known work he has done in prose fiction. His Thrilling and Truthful History of the Pony[Pg 343] Express (Chicago, 1908), filled a small gap in American history. A little group of biographical sketches and newspaper reminiscences, called Ten Wise Men and Some More (Chicago, 1909), is interesting. Colonel Visscher has also published five books of verse: Black Mammy; Harp of the South; Blue Grass Ballads and Other Verse (Chicago, 1900); Chicago: an Epic, and his most recent volume, Poems of the South and Other Verses (Chicago, 1911). The colonel is also a popular lecturer; and he has actually put paint on his face and essayed acting. He is a poet of the Old South, one reading his verse would at once conclude that not to have been born in Kentucky before the war, one might as well never have lived at all. He is a versified, pocket-edition of Mr. Thomas Nelson Page; and while he has not reached the sublime heights of true poesy, he has written some delicious dialect and much pleasing verse. Proem, printed in two of his books, is certainly the best thing he has done hitherto.

Bibliography. The Century Magazine (July, 1902); Who's Who in America (1912-1913).


[From Poems of the South and Other Verse (Chicago, 1911)]

In the evening of a lifetime
While the shadows, growing long,
Fall eastward, and the gloaming
Brings the spell of vesper song,
Fond memory turns backward
To the bright light of the day,
Where joys, like troops of fairies,
Gaily dance along the way,
Full-armed with mirth and music,
Driving skirmishers of care
Howling, back into the forest,
[Pg 344] And their dark, uncanny lair.
So the pastures of Kentucky,
And the fields of Tennessee,
The bloom of all the Southland
And the old-time melody;
The vales, and streams, and mountains;
The bay of trailing hounds;
The neigh of blooded horses
And the farm-yard's cheery sounds;
The smiles of wholesome women
And the hail of hearty men,
Come sweeping back, in fancy,
And, behold, I'm young again.


Bennett Henderson Young, historian and antiquarian, was born at Nicholasville, Kentucky, May 25, 1843, the son of blue-stocking Presbyterians. His academic training was received at Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, and Queen's College, Toronto, Canada. He was graduated in law from Queen's College, Belfast, Ireland. Colonel Young was with General John Hunt Morgan and his men during the Civil War, being in charge of the raid through St. Alban's, Vermont. He was a member of the fourth Constitutional convention which formulated Kentucky's present constitution. Colonel Young is now one of the leading lawyers of Louisville, and commander-in-chief of the United Confederate Veterans. He has published The History of the Kentucky Constitutions (1890); The History of Evangelistic Work in Kentucky (1891); History of the Battle of the Blue Licks (Louisville, 1897); The History of Jessamine County, Kentucky (Louisville, 1898); The History of the Division of the Presbyterian Church in Kentucky (1898); The Battle of the Thames (Louisville, 1901); Kentucky Eloquence (Louisville, 1907); and The[Pg 345] Prehistoric Men of Kentucky (Louisville, 1910). Colonel Young has taken a keen interest in "the prehistoric men of Kentucky," the mound-builders; and his collection is one of the finest in the country. His work upon these ancient people is far and away the ablest volume he has written. It represented the researches of a life-time, and the results of his labors are quite obvious.

Bibliography. Lawyers and Lawmakers of Kentucky (Chicago, 1897); Who's Who in America (1912-1913).


[From The Prehistoric Men of Kentucky (Louisville, Kentucky, 1910)]

The life of prehistoric man, judging from the large number of fortifications existing in Kentucky to this day, must have been one of constant and general warfare. His weapons were all constructed for conflict at short range.

First was his ax of two kinds, grooved and grooveless. The indications are that these were used contemporaneously, and though this is not certain, their proximity to each other in so many places would tend to show that they were made during the same period. The grooved ax would be more reliable either in domestic use or in war than the grooveless ax, because of the grip of the handle, aided materially by the groove, permitting it to be held much more closely and to admit of heavier strokes and more constant action. The battle-axes vary in weight from one to thirty-two pounds. They were doubtless so variant in weight by reason of the conditions that surrounded the makers, and also by reason of the ability of the user to carry either light or heavy weight. With handles from three to six feet and firmly bound with rawhide, which could be obtained from several animals, these men were enabled to fasten the handle tightly around the ax, either grooved or ungrooved. These axes would require close contact in battle. They had flint saws or knives which enabled them to cut the hickory withe or sapling from which these handles were made. After soaking the handle in hot water, or for that matter[Pg 346] in cold water, it could easily have been bent around the ax and tied with rawhide, which, by its contraction when drying, would press the handle closely in the groove.

They also used what is known as a battle-ax blade, that is, a thin piece of flint, oval in shape, about five by three and a half inches. By splitting the handle and placing the flint blade between it, and then binding with rawhide, they were enabled to fasten it very securely. These handles were about two or two and a half feet in length, and with the blade projecting on either side, became a dangerous weapon at close range.

The most damage, however, done by these prehistoric people was doubtless accomplished by the bow and arrow. The bows were about six feet in length, judging by the strings which we have seen and one of which the writer has been able to secure from Salts Cave. They would be made of many woods, preferably of hickory, cedar, or ash, but hickory usually possesses greater strength than other timbers of similar size. It is not probable that they had any tools with which they could split the hickory trees. They would, therefore, be compelled to use the hickory saplings in the manufacture of bow staves.

The penetrative force of the stone-tipped arrow, driven by the strong and skillful arms of these prehistoric men, must have been very great. Quite a number of instances are known and specimens preserved in which they were driven practically through the larger bones of the body. The author has a human pelvis found in a cave in Meade County. Imbedded in this is a portion of a flint arrow-point, the position of which shows that it had been driven through the body, penetrating the bone on the opposite side from which it entered. The point reached into the socket of the hip joint. There it remained, causing necrosis of the bone, until by processes of Nature the wastage was stopped, and the point remained in the bone until the death of the individual, which the indications show occurred long after receiving the wound. In one instance an arrowhead was driven three inches into the bone of the leg just below its union with the hip, and evidently caused the death of the party into whom it had been shot. A number of instances are known in which these arrowheads penetrated several inches into bone, and it was no unusual[Pg 347] thing that they attained sufficient penetrative force to drive them through both coverings of the skull.

Three of these arrowheads that have come under the immediate observation of the author are not sharp at all, but rather blunt. The smaller triangular arrowheads, if sufficiently strong—and probably they were—could have been driven readily into bone without the use of any great force, but an arrow-point about three inches in length, and with a blunt point, thus driven into the bones of the body, demonstrates beyond all question that the power which was used in their propulsion must have been comparatively very great.

The wooden or cane shafts probably were tipped with many kinds of points, some beveled, some serrated, some triangular, some blunt, being fastened thereto with the sinew of the deer or other animal. There are some evidences, although not entirely conclusive, that these arrow-points were often tipped with poison. It is said that at one time the Shawnees in Western Kentucky were so well versed in the use of poisons that they could place them in springs and thus destroy their enemies, and also that quite large streams of water were impregnated with these dangerous elements. We sometimes comment upon the savageness of the methods of these people, but the poisoned arrow is no worse than the soft-nose or explosive bullet, which has been used by civilized nations in the memory of living people.

The next weapon was the spear. These carried points so large that they could not have been used with the ordinary bow. They must have been attached to a larger piece of wood or cane than the arrow-shaft. They were probably mounted upon cane or pieces of wood from four and one-half to seven feet in length. They were doubtless used also in the destruction of the larger animals, either bears or buffaloes, during the buffalo period in Kentucky. The spear would be much more formidable in close quarters with an animal even as large as the wildcat than the bow and arrow. It would be comparatively as efficient as the bayonet of modern times.

Many of the flint knives were mounted on wooden handles. These sometimes measure from one to ten inches in length, and at very close range would become formidable weapons—not as[Pg 348] formidable, however, as the battle-ax blade which has been described above.

In Kentucky there are no evidences of the cross-bow having been used. The five weapons which we have described completed the military accoutrement of these men, who must have spent a large portion of their lives in warlike scenes and exploits.


James Hilary Mulligan, the author of In Kentucky, was born at Lexington, Kentucky, November 21, 1844. He was graduated at St. Mary's College, Montreal, Canada, in 1864; and five years later Kentucky (Transylvania) University granted him his degree in law. For forty years Judge Mulligan has been known in Kentucky as a lawyer, orator, and maker of clever, humorous verse. He was editor of the old Lexington Morning Transcript for a year; and for six years he was judge of the Recorder's Court of Lexington, from which work he won his title of "judge." From 1881 to 1888 Judge Mulligan was a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives; and from 1890 to 1894 he was in the State Senate. In 1894 President Cleveland appointed Judge Mulligan Consul-General at Samoa, and this post he held for two years. While in Samoa he saw much of Robert Louis Stevenson, who was working upon Weir of Hermiston, and well upon his way to the undiscovered country when the Kentucky diplomat met him. When Stevenson died, December 4, 1894, the first authoritative news of his passing came in a now rare and precious little booklet of thirty-seven pages which Lloyd Osbourne, Judge Mulligan, Bazett Haggard, brother of the English novelist, and another writer, sent out to the world, entitled A Letter to Mr. Stevenson's Friends (Apia, Samoa, 1894). It contained[Pg 349] a detailed account of the writer's last days, his death, and funeral. Mr. Osbourne "ventured also to reprint Mr. Gosse's beautiful lines, To Tusitala in Vailima, which reached Mr. Stevenson but three days before his death." President Cleveland offered to send Judge Mulligan to Cape Town, Africa, but he declined the appointment, and came home. For the past fifteen years he has devoted his attention to the law and to the writing of verse and prose. His Samoa, the Government, Commerce, and People (Washington, 1896), is said to be the most exhaustive account of that island ever published. Judge Mulligan's little humorous poem, In Kentucky, has made him famous. First read at a banquet in the old Phoenix Hotel, Lexington, in 1902, it has been declaimed in the halls of Congress and gotten into the Congressional Record. It has been parodied a thousand times, reproduced in almost every newspaper in English, illustrated, and at least one Kentuckian has heard it chanted by an Englishman in the shadow of the Pyramids in Egypt! More than a million souvenir postal cards have been sold with the verses printed upon them; and had the author had In Kentucky copyrighted, he would have reaped a harvest of golden coins. As poetry Judge Mulligan's Over the Hills to Hustonville, or The Bells of Old St. Joseph's, are superior to In Kentucky, but they are both comparatively unknown to the general public. Judge Mulligan's home, "Maxwell Place," on the outskirts of Lexington, was the birthplace of In Kentucky.

Bibliography. Lexington Leader (April 4, 1909); Library of Southern Literature (Atlanta, 1910, v. xiv).

[Pg 350]


[From The Lexington Herald (February 12, 1902)]

The moonlight falls the softest
In Kentucky;
The summer days come oftest
In Kentucky;
Friendship is the strongest,
Love's light glows the longest,
Yet, wrong is always wrongest
In Kentucky.
Life's burdens bear the lightest
In Kentucky;
The home fires burn the brightest
In Kentucky;
While players are the keenest,
Cards come out the meanest,
The pocket empties cleanest
In Kentucky.
The sun shines ever brightest
In Kentucky;
The breezes whisper lightest
In Kentucky;
Plain girls are the fewest,
Their little hearts the truest,
Maiden's eyes the bluest
In Kentucky.
Orators are the grandest
In Kentucky;
Officials are the blandest
In Kentucky;
Boys are all the fliest,
Danger ever nighest,
Taxes are the highest
[Pg 351] In Kentucky.
The bluegrass waves the bluest
In Kentucky;
Yet, bluebloods are the fewest(?)
In Kentucky;
Moonshine is the clearest,
By no means the dearest,
And, yet, it acts the queerest
In Kentucky.
The dovenotes are the saddest
In Kentucky;
The streams dance on the gladdest
In Kentucky;
Hip pockets are the thickest,
Pistol hands the slickest,
The cylinder turns quickest
In Kentucky.
The song birds are the sweetest
In Kentucky;
The thoroughbreds are fleetest
In Kentucky;
Mountains tower proudest,
Thunder peals the loudest,
The landscape is the grandest—
And politics—the damnedest
In Kentucky.


[From The Lexington Leader (April 4, 1909)]

Over the hill to Hustonville,
Past mead and vale and waving grain
With fleecy clouds and glad sunshine
And the balm of the coming rain;
On where hidden beneath the hill,
In the widening vale below—
Chime and smith and distant herd
[Pg 352] Sing a song of the long ago.
Over the hill to Hustonville
Where silent fields are sad and brown,
And the crow's lone call is blended
With the anvil beat of the town;
Where sweet the hamlet life flows on,
And the doors ever open wide,
Welcome the worn and wandering
To the ingle and cheer inside.
Over the hill to Hustonville
I knew and loved as a child,
A scene that yet lights up to me
With a radiant glow and mild;
With drowsy lane and quiet street,
Gables quaint and the houses gray,
Ancient inn with battered sign,
And an air of the far-away.
Over the hill to Hustonville
Where men are yet sturdy and strong
As were their sires in days long past—
As true as their flint-locks long.
And maids are shy and soft of speech—
As the wild-rose, lithsome and true,
Eyes alight as the coming dawn,
Softly blue, as their skies are blue.
Some—sometime—in the bye and bye,
With all my life-won riches rare—
Dead hopes and faded memories—
A silken floss of baby hair;
Fast locked close within my heart—
Worn of strife and the empty quest—
I'll over the hill to Hustonville,
To dream ever—and rest—and rest.
[Pg 353]


Mrs. Nelly (Nichol) Marshall McAfee, novelist and verse writer, was born at Louisville, Kentucky, May 8, 1845, the daughter of Humphrey Marshall, the younger. When but eighteen years of age she embarked upon a literary career. Her verse and short-stories appeared in many of the best American newspapers and magazines, and they brought her a wide reputation. On February 13, 1871, after a romantic courtship of some years, Miss Marshall was married to Captain John J. McAfee, a former Confederate soldier, then a member of the Kentucky legislature. Mrs. McAfee published two volumes of verse, entitled A Bunch of Violets, and Leaves From the Book of My Heart. Her novels include Eleanor Morton, or Life in Dixie (New York, 1865); Sodom Apples (1866); Fireside Gleamings (Chicago, 1866); Dead Under the Roses (1867); Wearing the Cross (Cincinnati, 1868); As by Fire (New York, 1869); Passion, or Bartered and Sold (Louisville, 1876); and A Criminal Through Love (Louisville, 1882). Mrs. McAfee died at Washington, D. C., about 1895.

Bibliography. Woods-McAfee Memorial History, by N. M. Woods (Louisville, 1905); Dictionary of American Authors, by O. F. Adams (Boston, 1905).


[From A Criminal Through Love (Louisville, Kentucky, 1882)]

Many years have been gathered to the illimitable past, and we find ourselves, with undiminished interest, seeking to learn all we can in regard to the positions and attainments of the characters who have been with us for so long.

This is the gist of what we have learned about them.

Walter Floor's firm has grown and flourished; the dark cloud of sorrow that so long overshadowed his sky, has rolled away, and he is nevermore melancholy or oppressed. His home is the[Pg 354] resting-place and haven for everybody who chooses to enjoy shelter and repose. Constant and Valentine are standing guests at the Floor mansion; the talented painter has no longer any need to work for money. The mention of his name opens every door to him, and Fortune and Fame await him with their arms laden with golden sheaves and shining laurel wreaths. His greatest work of art—his masterpiece—was taken from Mozart's Opera of Don Juan. At a glance any one could tell that the artist painted the portrait con amore, for Donna Anna was nothing more than a portrait of Margarethe Heinold—whom we must ever after this moment remember only as Margarethe Hendrik. More happiness than came with this name to her could scarcely be enjoyed by mortal. Great sums were offered again and again to Constant for this picture, but he refused to sell it; it now graces the elegant Salon of Julian Hendrik in his magnificent villa, which stands on the banks of the Rhine.

Margarethe, after the night of her brilliant debut, never stepped upon the boards. She was often urged to let the world hear her splendid voice, which returned to her in all its volume and beauty after she regained her health, but she refused to entertain the proposition for an instant, declaring that public life, however glorious, had no charms for her; that she lived only for her husband, to whom she becomes ever more tenderly attached the better she became acquainted with his noble heart, elevated mind, and peerless character as a man and a gentleman.

Didier Mametin is still in Paris; at the death of old Vincent he became his heir, and was at last able to open such a photographer's Atelier as other artists pronounced perfect in every detail. The lighthearted Frenchman, never accustomed to an extravagant mode of living, is just as merry in humor and abstemious in diet as of yore. Henriette often declares that he acts as if he were afraid of starving—he is such a hoarder for "rainy days." But Didier had a varied experience, and the lessons he learned were not easily forgotten. One happy fact remains: He and Henriette love each other dearly, and would not exchange their places or give up their home to be a king and queen and live in a palace.

Roderick Martens attends to the ship-building interests of Jyphoven,[Pg 355] in Amsterdam, and occupies the old Jyphoven mansion. Herr and Madame Jyphoven continue to reside in Paris. Bella is enchanted with life in the French city, and declares that to be mistress of the whole world—if she would go but for a day—could be no inducement to her to set her foot in the old Holland fishery, as she now describes it to be. She is entirely reconciled to Francisca. The beauty and happiness of the young wife would captivate the most callous heart.

And Von Kluyden? This man who devoted himself to intrigue and rascality for so long, knew not, while he lived, how otherwise to occupy his time. He was never satisfied. Nemesis held him fast in her cruel clutches. When the time came for Hendrik to assert and prove his rights, he did so most successfully; and that for which Isabella bartered her honor, and beauty, and youth, passed like sand through the fingers, and was hers no more. Von Kluyden was successful in nothing that he undertook to accomplish; the ghost of the murdered Horst followed him day and night;—he finally died in a madhouse! Isabella had, a little while before his dementia, entrusted herself and her million of money into the hands of a young man of the titled nobility—who in his turn did not love the young widow even for her marvelous beauty—but for the thalers and gulden that brought plenty to his empty coffers and luxury to his impoverished home. In this marriage Isabella did not find the happiness she expected to find, and for which she had so long waited. The Prince squandered her enormous fortune, as Princes are usually supposed to squander fortunes, in about the half of a year's duration, and by that time, having found out and enjoyed all that life held for him of pleasure or excitement, he closed his career by putting a pistol-ball through his head, early one morning, while the sun was shining, and the birds were singing, and flowers were blooming on every side.

So it has come to pass that Isabella—although not yet twenty-five years of age, has been twice a widow—(and a very charming one she is!) not likely now ever to be aught else! The sale of her beauty, her honor, her peace of mind, has brought to her, as a recompense for what she has lost, a varied and rich experience, which will save her forever hereafter from the chance of[Pg 356] being deceived and betrayed through the tenderest and noblest impulses of the human heart.

And so the curtain goes down forever between us and those with whom we have whiled away some pleasant hours, and gathered, it may be, profit or amusement from their acting on the stage of life.

Voila tout.


Mrs. Mary Fairfax Childs, maker of dialect verse, was born at Lexington, Kentucky, May 25, 1846. She is the daughter of the Rev. Edward Fairfax Berkley (1813-1897), who was rector of Christ Church, Lexington, for nineteen years. Dr. Berkley baptized Henry Clay, in 1847, and buried him five years later. Miss Berkley was a pupil at the Misses Jackson's Seminary for young ladies until her thirteenth year, or, in 1858, when her father accepted a call to St. Louis, in which city he labored for the following forty years. In St. Louis, she continued her studies at a private school for girls, when she left prior to her graduation in order to devote herself more especially to music, Latin, and French. Miss Berkley was married, in 1870, to William Ward Childs, a returned Confederate soldier; and in 1884 they removed to Clinton, Missouri, where they resided for seven years, when business called them to New York, their home until Mr. Child's death in 1911. Mrs. Childs's life in New York was a very busy one. She was prominent in several social and literary groups; and for many years she was corresponding secretary of the New York Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. Her first poem that attracted wide attention was entitled De Namin' ob de Twins, which originally appeared in The Century Magazine[Pg 357] for December, 1903. It was the second in a group of Eleven Negro Songs, written by Joel Chandler Harris, Grace MacGowan Cooke, Paul Lawrence Dunbar, and one or two other poets. That Mrs. Childs's masterpiece was the flower of the flock admits of little question: it is one of the best negro dialect poems yet written by a Southern woman. Exactly a year later the same periodical published her A Christmas Warning, with the well-known refrain, Roos' high, chicken—roos' high. These, with many others, were brought together in an attractive volume, entitled De Namin' ob de Twins, and Other Sketches from the Cotton Land (New York, 1908). This collection is highly esteemed by that rather small company of lovers of dialect verse. Mrs. Childs's poem, The Boys Who Wore the Gray, has been printed, and is well-known throughout the South. She has recently completed another collection of sketches, called Absolute Monarchy, which will appear in 1913. At the present time Mrs. Childs is historian of the Society of Kentucky Women of New York, although she is residing at Kirkwood, Missouri, near St. Louis.

Bibliography. Letters from Mrs. Childs to the present writer; The Century Magazine (January, 1906).


[From De Namin' ob de Twins, and Other Sketches from the Cotton Land (New York, 1908)]

What I gwine name mah Ceely's twins?
I dunno, honey, yit,
But I is jes er-waitin' fer de fines' I kin git,
De names is purty nigh run out,
So many niggahs heah,
I 'clar' dey's t'ick as cotton-bolls in pickin'-time o' yeah.
[Pg 358]
But 't ain' no use to 'pose to me
Ole secondary names,
Lak 'Lizabeth an' Josephine, or Caesah, Torm, an' James,
'Ca'se dese heah twinses ob mah gal's
Is sech a diff'ent kind,
Dey's 'titled to do grandes' names dat ary one kin find.
Fer sho dese little shiny brats
Is got de fus'-cut look,
So mammy wants fine city names, lak you gits out a book;
I ax Marse Rob, an' he done say
Some 'rageous stuff lak dis:
He'd call de bruddah Be'lzebub, de sistah Genesis;
Or Alphy an' Omegy—de
Beginnin' an' de en'—
But den, ob co'se no man kin tell, what mo' de Lawd 'll sen';
Fer de pappy ob dese orphans—
You heah me?—I'll be boun',
While dey's er-crawlin' on de flo', he'll be er-lookin' roun';
'Ca'se I done seen dem Judas teahs
He drap at Ceely's grabe,
A-peepin' 'hind his han'kercher, at ole Tim's yaller Gabe;
A-mekin' out to moan an' groan,
Lak he was gwine 'o bus'—
Lawd! honey, dem dat howls de mos,' gits ober it de fus'.
Annynias an' Saphiry,
Sis Tab done say to me,
But he'p me, Lawd! what do she 'spec' dese chillum gwine o' be?
'Sides, dem names 's got er cur'us soun'—
You says I's hard to please?
Well, so 'ould any granny be, wid sech a pa'r as dese.
Ole Pahson Bob he 'low dat I
[Pg 359] Will suttinly be sinnin',
Onless I gibs 'em names dat starts 'em right in de beginnin';
"Iwilla" fer de gal, he say,
F'om de tex' "I will a-rise,"
An' dat 'ould show she's startin' up, todes glory in de skies;
An' fer dis man chile, Aberham—
De fardah ob' em all—
Or else Belshazzah, who done writ dat writin' on de wall;
But Pahson Bob—axcuse me, Lawd!—
Hed bettah sabe his bref
To preach de gospel, an' jes keep his "visin" to hiss'f;
Per nary pusson, white nor black,
Ain' gib no p'int to me
'Bout namin' dese heah Chris'mus gifs, asleep on granny's knee;
(Now heshaby—don' squirm an' twis',
Be still you varmints, do!
You anin' gwine hab no niggah names to tote aroun' wide you!)
'Ca'se on de question ob dese names
I sho is hed mah mine
Perzactly an' percidedly done med up all de time;
Fer mah po' Ceely Ann—yas, Lawd,
Jes nigh afo' she died,
She name' dis gal, "Neu-ral-gy," her boy twin, "Hom-i-cide."


William Thompson Price, dramatic critic, creator of playwrights, was born near Louisville, Kentucky, December 17, 1846. He was educated in the private schools of Louisville, but the Civil War proved more interesting than text-books, so he ran away with Colonel E. P. Clay, whom he left, in turn, for John H. Morgan, and Generals Forrest and Wheeler. He was finally captured and imprisoned[Pg 360] but he, of course, escaped. After the war Mr. Price went to Germany and studied for three years at the Universities of Leipzig and Berlin. From 1875 to 1880 he was dramatic critic for the Louisville Courier-Journal; and the following five years he devoted to editorial work for various newspapers, and to collecting material for his enormous biography of the Rev. George O. Barnes, a noted and eccentric Kentucky evangelist, which appeared under the title of Without Scrip or Purse (Louisville, 1883). Mr. Price went to New York in the early eighties, and that city has remained his home to this day. In 1885 he was dramatic critic for the now defunct New York Star, which he left after a year to become a reader of new plays for A. M. Palmer, the leading manager of his time, whom he was associated with for more than twenty years. Mr. Price's The Technique of the Drama (New York, 1892), gave him a high position among the dramatic writers of the country. A new edition of it was called for in 1911, and it seems destined to remain the chief authority in its field for many years. In 1901 Mr. Price became playreader for Harrison Grey Fiske; and in the same year he founded the American School of Playwriting, in which men and women, whom the gods forgot, are transformed into great dramatists—perhaps! His second volume upon the stage, The Analysis of Play Construction and Dramatic Principle (New York, 1908), is the text-book of his school. At the present time Mr. Price is editor of The American Playwright, a monthly magazine of dramatic discussion.

Bibliography. Letters from Mr. Price to the present writer; Who's Who in America (1912-1913).

[Pg 361]


[From The Technique of the Drama (New York, 1892)]

The light-hearted genius of Paris composed a new style of opera for the general merriment of the world. Who can describe the surprises, the quaintness of song, the drolleries of action of the Offenbach school? It was the intoxicating wine of music. Gladstone, when premier of England, found time to say that the world owed as much in its civilization to the discovery of the fiddle as it did to steam.

This cannot be applied in its whole sense to Offenbach, but this master of satire and the sensuous certainly expressed his times. He set laughter to song. It was democratic. It spared not king, courtier, or the rabble. It was wisdom and sentiment in disguise. It was born among despotisms, and jested when kingdoms fell. It was the stalking horse behind which Offenbach hunted the follies of the day and bagged the absurdities of the hour. If it had double entendre, its existence had a double meaning. Its music and purpose defied national prejudices. Under its laughter-compelling notes the sober bass-viol put on a merry disposition, and your cornet-a-piston became a wag. It was flippant, the glorification of youthful mirth and feelings, and it made many a melancholy Jacques sing again the song of Beranger,

"Comme je regrette ma jambe si dodu."

It is not the purpose here to commend its delirious dances, but to admit that there was genius in it. In a technical sense the dramatic part of them are models compared with the inane and vague compositions of a later school.

The opera bouffe is in a stage beyond decadence, and no longer regards consistency, even of nonsense, in its dramatic elements. Some of the conventionalisms of its technique remain.

We hear again and again the old choruses, the drinking songs, the letter songs, the wine songs, the conspirators' songs, the departure for the war, the lovers' duets, and what-not, with the old goblets, the old helmets and all in use; but order is lost, and[Pg 362] the topical song often saves the public patience, apart from the disjecta membra, upon which are fed the eye and the ear.

The Gilbert opera. The delicate foolery of Gilbert and the interpreting melody of Sullivan created an inimitable form of opera that delighted its generations. In its way perfection marks it. There is much in it that ministers to inward quiet and enjoyment. "Pinafore," "The Mikado," and all the list, are products of genius. "Ruddygore" is structurally weak, proving that even nonsense must have a logical treatment. Successful in a manner as "Ruddygore" was, it was filled with characteristic quaintness. We accept Rose Maybud as a piece of good luck, from the moment her modest slippers demurely patter to the front; and it is a sober statement to say that our generation has seen nothing more charming than her artful artlessness and innocence. She is worthy of Gilbert. His taste is refined beyond the point of vulgarity in essence or by way of expediency. His fancy is not tainted with the corruption of flesh-tight limbs, and he holds fast only to such physical allurements as the "three little maids just from school" in the "Mikado" or the impossibly good and dainty Rose Maybud may tempt us with. In the dance there is no lasciviousness, only joy. Gilbert and Sullivan have called a halt to the can-can and bid the world be decent. The whole history of comic opera is filled with proof that music first consented to lend itself to foolery on condition that there should be some heart in it; and even Offenbach, the patriarch of libidinous absurdities, could not get along without stopping by the wayside to make his sinners sing love-songs filled with pure emotion.

Rose Maybud is a piece of delicate coquetry with the mysterious simplicity of maidenhood, giving offense in no way. These authors are satirists, not burlesquers and fakirs.

[Pg 363]


George Montgomery Davie, a verse-maker of cleverness and charm, was born near Hopkinsville, Kentucky, March 16, 1848. He began his collegiate career at Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, but he later went to Princeton, from which institution he was graduated in 1868. Two years later he established himself as a lawyer at Louisville. Davie rose rapidly in his profession, and he was soon recognized as one of the ablest lawyers in Kentucky. Though busy with his practice, he found time to write verse and short prose papers for periodicals that were appreciated by many persons. Davie was a Latinist of decided ability, and he often employed himself in turning the odes of Horace into English. His original work, however, is very charming and clever, a smile being concealed in almost every line he wrote, though it is a very quiet and dignified smile, never boisterous. He was one of the founders of the now celebrated Filson Club, of Louisville. He died at New York, February 22, 1900, but he sleeps to-day in Louisville's beautiful Cave Hill cemetery. Verses (Louisville, Kentucky, n. d.), a broadside, contains Davie's best original poems and translations and it is a very scarce item at this time.

Bibliography. The Courier-Journal (February 23, 1900); Kentucky Eloquence (Louisville, 1907).


(Catullus, Car. CI.)

[From Verses (Louisville, Kentucky, n. d.)]

Through many nations, over many seas,
Brother, I come to thy sad obsequies:
To bring the last gifts for the dead to thee,
[Pg 364] And speak to thy mute ashes—left to me
By the hard fate, that on a cruel day,
From me, dear brother, called Thyself away.
Receive these gifts, wet with fraternal tears;
And the last rites, that custom old endears;
These fond memorials would my sorrow tell—
Brother! forever, hail thee—and farewell!


[From the same]

Animula vagula blandula,
Hospes comesque corporis,
Quae nunc abibis in loca,
Pallidula rigida nudula;
Nec, ut soles, dabis jocos?
Thou sprite! so charming, uncontrolled,
Guest and companion of my clay,
Into what places wilt thou stray,
When thou art naked, pale, and cold?
Wilt then make merry—as of old?


John Uri Lloyd, novelist and scientist, was born at West Bloomfield, New York, April 19, 1849. He is the son of a civil engineer who came West, in 1853, for the purpose of surveying a railroad between Covington and Louisville, known as the "River Route." Mr. Lloyd was thus four years old when his father settled at Burlington, Boone county, Kentucky, near the line of the road. The panic of 1854 came and the railroad company failed, but his parents preferred their new Kentucky home to the old home in the East, and they decided to remain, taking up their first vocations, that of teaching. For several years they taught in the village schools of the three little Kentucky towns of Burlington, Petersburg, and Florence.[Pg 365] Mr. Lloyd lived at Florence until he was fourteen years of age, when he was apprenticed to a Cincinnati druggist, but he continued to be a resident of Kentucky until 1876, since which time he has lived at Cincinnati. In 1878 he became connected with the Cincinnati College of Pharmacy, and this connection has continued to the present day. In 1880 he was married to a Kentucky woman. Mr. Lloyd is one of the most distinguished pharmaceutical chemists in the United States. He has a magnificent library and museum upon his subjects; and he is generally conceded to be the world's highest authority on puff-balls. Mr. Lloyd's scientific works include The Chemistry of Medicines (1881); Drugs and Medicines of North America (1884); King's American Dispensatory (1885); Elixirs, their History and Preparation (1892); and he, as president, has edited the publications of the Lloyd Library, as follows: Dr. B. S. Barton's Collections (1900); Dr. Peter Smith's Indian Doctor's Dispensatory (1901); A Study in Pharmacy (1902); Dr. David Schopf's Materia Medica Americana (1903); Dr. Manasseh Cutler's Vegetable Productions (1903); Reproductions from the Works of William Downey, John Carver, and Anthony St. Storck (1907); Hydrastis Canadensis (1908); Samuel Thomson and Thomsonian Materia Medica (1909). Dr. Lloyd has won his general reputation as a writer of novels descriptive of life in northern Kentucky. His first work to attract wide attention was entitled Etidorpha, or the End of Earth (New York, 1895), a work which involved speculative philosophy. This was followed by a little story, The Right Side of the Car (Boston, 1897). Then came the Stringtown stories, which made his reputation. "Stringtown" is the fictional name for the Kentucky Florence of his boyhood. There are four of them: Stringtown on the Pike (New York, 1900); Warwick of the Knobs (New York, 1901); Red Head (New York, 1903); and Scroggins (New York, 1904). In these[Pg 366] stories the author's aim was not to be engaged solely as a novelist, "but to portray to outsiders a phase of life unknown to the world at large, and to establish a folk-lore picture in which the scenes that occurred in times gone by, would be paralleled in the events therein narrated." Stringtown on the Pike is Mr. Lloyd's best known book, but Warwick of the Knobs is far and way the finest of the four.

Bibliography. The Bookman (May, 1900); The Outlook (November 16, 1901); The Bookman (December, 1910).


[From Warwick of the Knobs (New York, 1901)]

Warwick made no movement; no word of greeting came from his lips, no softening touch to his furrowed brow, no sparkle to his cold, gray eye. As though gazing upon a stranger, he sat and pierced the girl through and through with a formal stare, that drove despair deeper into her heart and caused her to cling closer to her brother.

"Pap, sister's home ag'in," the youth repeated.

"I know nothing of a sister who claims a home here."

Mary would have fallen but for the strong arm of her brother, who gently, tenderly guided her to a great rocking-chair. Then he turned on his father.

"I said thet sister's home agin, and I means it, pap."

Turning the leaves of the Book to a familiar passage, Warwick read aloud:

"'The lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life is not of the Father, but of the world.' This girl has no home here. She is of the world."

"Father, ef sister hes no home here, I hav'n't none, either. Ef she must go out into the world, I'll go with her."

The man of God gazed sternly at the rebellious youth. Then he turned to the girl.

[Pg 367]

"The good Book says, 'A fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.'"

Joshua stepped between the two and hid the child from her father.

"Pap, thet book says tough things to-night. The text you preached from to-day was a better one. I remember et, and I'll leave et to you ef I am not right. 'I am merciful, saith the Lord, and I will not keep my anger forever.' Thet's a better text, and I takes et, God was in a better humor when He wrote et."

"Joshua!" spoke the father, shocked at his son's irreverence.

"Listen, pap. I hate to say et, but I must. You preached one thing this morning, and you acts another thing now. Didn't you say thet God 'retaineth not His anger forever, because He delighteth in mercy?' I may not hev the words right, but I've got the sense."

"My son!"

"Pap, I axes the question on the square. Ain't thet what you preached?"

"That was the text."

"It ain't fair to preach one text in the meetin'-house and act another text at home."


"Let's hev the mercy text to-night. Pap, sister's home ag'in. Let's act the fergivin' text out."

Joshua stepped aside and the minister, touched in spite of himself, glanced at his daughter, a softened glance, that spoke of affection, but he made no movement. Then the girl slowly rose and turned toward the door, still keeping her eyes on her father's face. She edged backward step by step toward the door by which she had entered. Her hand grasped the latch; the door moved on its hinges.

"Stop, sister," said Joshua. "Pap, ef sister opens thet door I go with her, and then you will sit alone in this room ferever. You will be the last Warwick of the Knob."

Warwick, with all his coldness and strength, could not stand the ordeal.

"Come back, my children," he said. "It is also written, 'I[Pg 368] will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I remember no more.'" And then, as in former times, Mary's head rested on her father's knee.


[1] The italics in which the three Kentucky lines are set, are my own.

[2] Marshall in his History, v. i, p. 7, says it was 1758. Mr. H. Taylor thinks Dr. Walker informed him it was in 1752, but Col. Shelby states implicitly that, in 1779 in company with Dr. Walker on Yellow creek a mile or two from Cumberland mountain, the Doctor observed "upon that tree," pointing to a beech across the road to the left hand, "Ambrose Powell marked his name and the date of the year." I examined the tree and found A. Powell 1750 cut in legible characters.

[3] This reply was made in answer to one of Randolph's ranting Yazoo philippics, several of which are among the bitterest speeches ever heard in Congress. Lyon at this time (1804) was a member of Congress from Kentucky. The Yazoo land grant frauds had aroused the public mind, and a commission had endeavored to settle by compromise the claims of Georgia, and those holding under the Georgia act of 1795, to the vast territory in dispute. Randolph denounced the frauds committed, and opposed any settlement of the controversy, while Lyon desired to see the country settled, and the compromise of the commissioners carried out.

[4] This reply to Randolph was made in the House of Representatives, in 1824, in the course of the debate between Clay and Randolph. "During the session of 1823-4, attempts wore made to run at Mr. Clay, on account of his peculiar situation in being named for the presidency while Speaker of the House of Representatives, and for his zealous support of the American system. In a debate on an improvement bill he encountered Mr. Randolph of Virginia, who had endeavored to provoke him to reply," and the bit of the debate reproduced here is the answer the gentleman from Virginia received for his pains.

[5] After the above address, La Fayette rose, and in a tone influenced by powerful feeling, made an eloquent reply. In 1824 La Fayette visited the United States, as "the guest of the Nation," and he was gladly welcomed in many parts of the country. And "on the tenth of December, 1824, he was introduced in the House of Representatives by a committee appointed for that purpose. The general, being conducted to the sofa placed for his reception, the Speaker (Mr. Clay), addressed him" in the very happy words given above.

[6] Copyright, 1897, by Charles Scribner's Sons.

[7] Governor Morehead's widow, Mrs. L. M. Morehead, who died several years ago, published a slender volume of verse, Christmas Is Coming and Other Poems for the "House Mother" and her Darlings (Philadelphia, 1871).

[8] Copyright, 1905, by the Arthur H. Clark Company.

[9] Some versions show the following stanzas at this point:

Who heard the thunder of the fray
Break o'er the field beneath,
Knew well the watchword of that day
Was "Victory or Death."
Long had the doubtful conflict raged
O'er all that stricken plain,
For never fiercer fight had waged
The vengeful blood of Spain;
And still the storm of battle blew,
Still swelled the gory tide;
Not long, our stout old chieftain[10] knew,
Such odds his strength could bide.
'Twas in that hour his stern command
Called to a martyr's grave
The flower of his beloved land,
The nation's flag to save.
By rivers of their fathers' gore
His first-born laurels grew,
And well he deemed the sons would pour
Their lives for glory too.
Full many a norther's breath has swept
O'er Angostura's plain,[11]
And long the pitying sky has wept
Above its mouldered slain.
The raven's scream, or eagle's flight,
Or shepherd's pensive lay,
Alone awakes each sullen height
That frowned o'er that dread fray.
Sons of the Dark and Bloody Ground,
Ye must not slumber there, et cetera.

[10] Gen. Zachary Taylor.

[11] Near Buena Vista.

[12] A complete list of the club's publications is: John Filson, by R. T. Durrett (1884); The Wilderness Road, by Thomas Speed (1886); The Pioneer Press of Kentucky, by W. H. Perrin (1888); Life and Times of Judge Caleb Wallace, by W. H. Whitsitt (1888); An Historical Sketch of St. Paul's Church, by R. T. Durrett (1889); The Political Beginnings of Kentucky, by J. M. Brown (1889); The Centenary of Kentucky, by R. T. Durrett (1892); The Centenary of Louisville, by R. T. Durrett (1893); The Political Club of Danville, Kentucky, by Thomas Speed (1894); The Life and Writings of Rafinesque, by R. E. Call (1895); Transylvania University, by Dr. Robert Peter (1896); Bryant's Station, by R. T. Durrett (1897); The First Explorations of Kentucky, by J. S. Johnston (1898); The Clay Family, by Z. F. Smith and Mrs. Mary R. Clay (1899); The Battle of Tippecanoe, by Alfred Pirtle (1900); Boonesborough, by G. W. Ranck (1901); The Old Masters of the Bluegrass, by S. W. Price (1902); The Battle of the Thames, by B. H. Young (1903); The Battle of New Orleans, by Z. F. Smith (1904); History of the Medical Department of Transylvania University, by Dr. Robert Peter (1905); Lopez's Expeditions to Cuba, by A. C. Quisenberry (1906); The Quest for a Lost Race, by Dr. T. E. Pickett (1907); Traditions of the Earliest Visits of Foreigners to North America, by R. T. Durrett (1908); Sketches of Two Distinguished Kentuckians, by J. W. Townsend and S. W. Price (1909); The Prehistoric Men of Kentucky, by B. H. Young (1910); The Kentucky Mountains, by Miss Mary Verhoeff (1911). No publication was issued in 1912.

[13] Copyright, 1893, by the Filson Club.

[14] Copyright, 1901, by the American Baptist Publication Society.

[15] Copyright, 1897, by G. P. Putnam's Sons.

[16] Copyright, 1905, by the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association.

[17] Copyright, 1909, by the Author.

[18] Copyright, 1898, by John P. Morton and Company.

[19] Copyright, 1910, by Doubleday, Page and Company.

[20] Copyright, 1892, by the Author.

[21] Copyright, 1901, by McClure, Phillips and Company.

[22] Copyright, 1906, by John James Piatt.

[23] Copyright, 1891, by J. B. Lippincott Company.

[24] Copyright, 1891, by Robert Clarke Company.

[25] Canard.

[26] Copyright, 1910, by The Torch Press.

[27] Copyright, 1902, by John James Piatt.

[28] Copyright, 1906, by Houghton, Mifflin Company.

[29] Copyright, 1909, by Houghton, Mifflin Company.

[30] Copyright, 1911, by the Author.

[31] Copyright, 1910, by the Filson Club.

[32] Copyright, 1908, by B. W. Dodge and Company.

[33] Copyright, 1892, by Brentano's.

[34] Copyright, 1901, by Dodd, Mead and Company.

Transcriber's Notes: