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The quarterly of the Oregon Historical Society. Volume XVI Oregon Historical Society 1915

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MARCH, 1915—DECEMBER, 1915
Edited by
Portland, Oregon
The Ivy Press /So (>£$'
Celilo Canal—Its Origin, Its Building and Meaning
By Marshall N. Dana 109-124
Columbia, the Celebration of the Open
By Marshall N. Dana 107-108
Columbia, the Story of the River—Its Place in Northwest
By Henry L. Talkington 181-195
Dalles-Celilo Canal, Address at the Formal Opening of the,
May 5, 1915
By Joseph N. Teal 125-131
Dalles - Celilo Celebration, Address of Welcome at the
Wallula, May 4, 1915
By William D. Lyman 175-180
Dalles-Celilo Portage, The; Its History and Influence
By T. C. Elliott 133-174
Dalles, the Townsite, The ; the Methodist Mission Claim To
By Mrs. R. S. Shackelford     24-32
Emigrating Companies, The Organization of the Oregon
By Harrison C. Dale 205-827
Farming, Early, in Umatilla County
By C A. Barrett 343-349
Indian Wars, The, in Washington Territory
By Thomas W.  Prosch       1-23
Indian Words in Our Language
By J. Neilson Barry •. 338-342
Minto, John—A Tribute by One Who Loved Him
By John Gill  330-337
Oregon City Canal and Locks, Address at the Dedicatory
Exercises at the Opening of the, at Oregon City,
May 6, 1915
By Joseph N. Teal 197-203
Pacific Coast Survey, The, of 1849-1850
By Lewis A. McArthnr 246-274
Packwood, William H., Reminiscences
By Fred Lockley     33-54
Provisional Government, The, Last Step in the Formation
of A, for Oregon in 1845
By Robert Carlton Clark 313-329
Thayer, Eli, The Speech of, on the Admission of Oregon
as a State 364-376
Walker, Captain Joseph R.
By James O'Meara 350-363
Yaquina Railroad, The—The Tale of a Great Fiasco
By LesKe M. Scott 228-245
Samuel Christopher Lancaster—Columbia, The, America's
Great Highway Through the Cascade Mountains
to the Sea.   By F. G.  Young 377-378
am Page
William   J.   Trimble-=»Mining  Advance   Into  the  Inland
Empire.   By F. G. Young 275-276
Thomas W. Prosch
Mrs. Virginia McCarver Prosch
Miss Margaret Lenora Denny
Mrs. H. F. Beecher
By George H. Himes 276a-276c
Fisher, Reverend Ezra, Correspondence 65-104, 277-310, 379-413
Pickrell, William S., Letter of, to Sanford Watson     61-63
Barrett, C. A., Early Farming in Umatilla County 343-349
Barry, J. Neilson, Indian Words in Our Language 338-342
Clark, Robert Carlton, The Last Step in the Formation of a
Provisional Government for Oregon in 1845.. .• 313-329
Dale, Harrison G, The Organization of the Oregon Emigrating
Companies  205-227
Dana, Marshall N., The Celebration of the Open Columbia 107-108
—The Celilo Canal, Its Origin, Its Building and Meaning.. .109-124
Elliott, T. C, The Dalles-Celilo Portage; Its History and Influence 133-174
Fisher, Reverend Ezra, Correspondence 65-104, 227-310, 379-413
Gill, John, John Minto, a Tribute by One Who Loved Him 330-337
Himes, Geo. H., Obituaries of Thomas W. Prosch, Mrs. Virginia McCarver Prosch, Miss Margaret Lenora Denny
and Mrs. H. F. Beecher 276a-276c
Lockley, Fred,  William H. Packwood Reminiscences     33-54
Lyman,   William   D.,   Address   of   Welcome   at   The   Dalles-
Celilo   Celebration,   Wallula,  May   5,  1915 175-180
McArthur, Lewis A., The Pacific Coast Survey of 1849-1850 246-274
O'Meara, James, Captain Joseph R. Walker 350-363
Pickrell, William S., Letter of, to Sanford Watson     61-63
Prosch, Thomas W., The Indian War in Washington Territory..     1-23
Scott, Leslie M., The Yaquina Railroad, the Tale of a Great
Fiasco 228-245
Shackelford, Mrs. R. S., The Methodist Mission Claim to The
Dalles Townsite      24-32
Thayer, Eli; Speech on the Admission of Oregon as a State 364-376
Talkington, Henry L., Story of the River—Its Place in Northwest History   181-195
Teal, Joseph N, Address at the Formal Opening of The Dalles-
Celilo Canal, May 5, 1915 125-131
—Address  at   the  Dedicatory  Exercises  on   the  Formal
Opening of the Oregon City Locks and Canal at Oregon
City, May 6, 1915 197-203
Young,   F.   G.,   Reviews—Mining   Advance   Into   the   Inland
Empire  275-276
—The Columbia, America's Great Highway 377-378
of the
Oregon Historical Society
Volume XVI MARCH, 1915 Number 1
The Quarterly disavows responsibility for the positions taken by contributors to its pages
By the Indian War in Washington Territory is meant the
struggle that began between the Indians on the one side and
the white people on the other side in the fall of 1855. The
struggle that then ensued is sometimes called the Yakima War,
from the fact that it had its inception among the Yakima
Indians. It also extended into and over much of Oregon, but ,
for the purposes of this address Washington only will be
When white men first came to the country the Indians had
most erroneous impressions and conceptions of them. They
could estimate them only from what they knew among themselves, and from what they saw of the white men. The
immense size of their vessels—ten to twenty times that of
the largest canoes—at once caused astonishment, which
merged into awe at the wonderful things possessed and done
by these strangers with white skins. Their clothing, their
foods, their noisy but deadly weapons, their articles of trade
were all new to the Red Men. They had never seen or heard
of things of the kind. These white men to them were superior,
almost supernatural beings. Their possessions were deemed
of extraordinary value, compared with which those of the
Indians were as of nothing. Avaricious traders took advantage
of their favored situation to make bargains with the untutored
*The annual address to the Oregon Historical Society, delivered December
19th, 1914, at Portland, by Mr. Thomas W. Prosch of Seattle. Thomas W.  Prosch
savages upon the basis of fifty, one hundred and sometimes
two hundred to one. As the traders increased in numbers
competition became sharper, the natives better informed, and
wrongs of this kind were lessened in frequency and gradually
caused to cease.
After the ship merchants came land merchants, the various
individuals and companies of 1811 and later years. Of these
the oldest and greatest was the Hudson's Bay, the only one
of the early days still in existence. In this paper that company alone will be mentioned. Its agents proceeded to establish themselves safely, pleasantly and permanently, upon the
theory of exclusive occupancy of a fur producing region.
As time went on they were compelled to change their
course; farming and milling were resorted to, and the stores
of the Company sought and received much patronage from
visiting ships and from white men who uninvited came among
them. Their establishments at Vancouver, Nisqually and elsewhere were sufficiently strong and fortified to keep out the
Indians, and a rule partially military and governmental was
adopted. The natives were impressed by the power of the
Company and were compelled to yield to it in every clash.
The Company was just to them. Its wares were always good,
and the prices were fair. The employees were a mixed lot of
men—a few English, a few Scotch, an occasional American,
French-Canadians, Hawaiians, Indians from various parts,
and many men in whose veins flowed the blood of both white
and red races. They intermarried freely, and they gave their
children every advantage that their means and opportunities
afforded. There was little or no sign of race prejudice. The
rudest dullest native could readily see that he was measured
and respected for what he was worth, and that the treatment
given him was just as good as that given any other person,
under like circumstances. They appreciated this, and became
loyal and devoted adherents. To them the Company was not
only employer, but ruler, guide and friend.
Things went on this way until the coming of the American Indian War in Washington 3
missionaries and settlers. In their fewness and weakness they
did not attract much attention until 1842-43. The Indians
could see by that time that these white men were different
from those of the Company. The new men took to themselves large tracts of land, a mile square; they had stores of
their own; ships came to them; they were visited by agents
of a distant government; as their numbers increased they
organized and assumed charge and control of the country. The
Indians were amazed. In their loyalty to the Company they did
not like to see these things. There is no question that if a
war had arisen between the United States and Great Britain
at that time, the Hudson's Bay Company could have enrolled on
the British side every Indian in what later became the Territory
of Washington; nor can there be doubt that the Indians
wondered why the fur company did not expel or exterminate
the troublesome Americans in the earlier days, when they
were able so to do, as Indian tribes all over the continent did
with other Indians when the latter encroached upon the particular territory claimed and partially occupied by the tribes
referred to.
As the years went on, and the Americans became more
numerous and more aggressive and bold, they crowded the
natives and hampered them. Rumors came to the Indians of
what had occurred between the races two thousand miles and
more to the east, and how their people had been subjugated,
and destroyed or driven out. They could see that the story
thus told them was being repeated in the Willamette Valley.
More white men came to Oregon than they supposed, in the
beginning, were in the world, and they heard of still more
planting themselves—in Utah and California. White men
crossed the Indian lands, killed the game, and in some cases
abused the tribespeople. Soldiers followed, warships, gold-
miners and finally the office-holders of a new Territory.
Of these latter Isaac I. Steven^ was chief and foremost.
He was not only the first governor, but superintendent of
Indian affairs as well.    He was instructed to make treaties 4 Thomas W.  Prosch
with the Indians. Throughout the western country they were
intended to be substantially the same. Local conditions caused
some variance with the general plan. They looked to the
establishment of the Indians upon reserved lands, all other
lands going to the government of the United States for the
purposes of the white people. For giving up their rights to
the country, not included within the reservations, the Indians
were to be paid in merchandise, instruction, care and otherwise. Here slavery was abolished, trade in liquor prohibited,
and traffic forbidden with the people of foreign lands. The
benefits to the Indians were spread over a long term of years.
The natives were dealt with as though they were nations,
instead of tribes, and in some cases mere handsful of people.
The compensation promised was small—inadequate, insignificant—and even at that was not honestly and fully paid.
The first of the treaties was made with the Indians of the
upper Sound in December of 1854. Three reservations were
provided for, each of about twelve hundred and eighty ( 1280)
acres, for the Puyallups, Nisquallies and Indians near Olympia.
The lands were not in one case suitable, and in no case sufficient in extent. Other treaties followed, the last concerning us
being one at Walla Walla in May and June of 1855. A great
number of Indians were there assembled, from the Umatilla,
Walla Walla, Palouse, Yakima and parts adjacent. As Oregon
was interested, Joel Palmer, superintendent there, participated
with Stevens. They had a military escort, foods and presents
to give and strong men to urge the treaties upon the natives.
Some Indians favored and some opposed. More than once it
looked as though the Council would end in failure. At last,
after much oratory, persuasion and strategy, and three weeks
of time, the white men accomplished their purpose. The treaty
was signed, by some reluctantly, and by others willingly. A
few refused to sign. It was reported that a proposition was
made by disaffected ones to join forces and massacre the
white officials, soldiers and citizens there gathered. To have
done this would have been comparatively easy for the thou- Indian War in Washington 5
sands of warriors then upon the grounds. No one, of course,
will contend that the Indians thoroughly knew what they were
doing. All proceedings were conducted through interpreters,
and at the best this method was faulty. And then memory is
frail. Different people will hear, understand and remember
differently. The natives could not read and they placed their
"X" marks upon a paper not one word of which they individually understood. Within a month an old Indian has appeared at
Seattle who signed the treaty affecting the lands there in
January, 1855. He said that the Indians had not been paid as
promised; that they were to receive two buckets full of gold
coins for what they gave up in the vicinity of that city. He
probably knew as much as the other Indians what they were
doing, and his recollection of it was probably no more erroneous
than theirs. The first and last of the Stevens treaties were
apparently the immediate cause of the war that followed, for
the Indians affected by them were the ones that entered upon
it, while the Indians affected by the other treaties generally
abstained, though the terms of all the treaties were substantially
In these negotiations and treaties, the proprietary rights of
the Indians to all the lands in Washington Territory were
recognised by the government of the United States. This
fact, thus brought to the attention of the natives, set them
to reasoning along a line of thought not intended. They saw
the white people increase from about one thousand in 1850
to about five thousand in 1855. These white people had taken
vast tracts of land, and the best land at that, that belonged
to the Indians. The most fertile lands; the most level and
approachable; the choicest landings and townsites; the campgrounds, cemeteries, fishing sites, berryfields were all taken
in this wholesale manner by white men who, as the Indians
now learned, had no right to them. Further, these apparently
lawless white men had no use for more than one per cent of
the lands thus taken. As they became more numerous they
also became more harsh and arbitrary with the Indians.   The Thomas W.  Prosch
laws of the latter had no force with the white men, while their
own laws were imposed upon the native whether or no, and
the latter invariably got the worst of it in their legal and
sometimes illegal altercations. The Indian mind gradually
came to know that it was only a question of time until they
would be reduced and perhaps destroyed by these new strong
people, who had come among them ; either that, or a combination among the Indians, a sudden war, and extermination of
the strangers. While they were thus contemplating their unhappy situation, a new cause for trouble arose.
Gold was discovered in the Colville country. White men
began going there. The Indians had some knowledge of the
discoveries in California, and of the vast armies of white men
who, since 1848, had annually gone there in quest of the yellow
metal. They knew that if anything of that sort occurred in
Washington Territory they would suffer and die in consequence. Their country would be overrun, their game destroyed,
their means of subsistence exhausted, their rights of every
nature disregarded, and they insulted, abused, impoverished
and starved. Some of them, wisely or unwisely, determined
to resist, to prevent the threatened calamity or die in the
In the summer of 1855, seven men left Seattle to seek gold
in eastern Washington. While in the Yakima Valley they
were attacked by Indians, and four of the number killed—
Eaton, Fanjoy, Walker and Jamieson. The other three men
escaped, and soon were over the Cascade Mountains, telling
their former neighbors of the unhappy and disastrous experience which they had undergone. It was reported that
other white men, also seeking gold, were killed by the Indians
about the same time.
When information of these murderous acts reached the authorities, A. J. Bolon, an Indian agent, was sent to inquire of
the Indians concerning them. He was at the Catholic Mission
in Yakima, September 23 rd, in conference with the Indians.
It is said and, no doubt truly, that he threatened them with Indian War in Washington
punishment; telling them that soldiers would be sent for that
purpose, that the murderers would have to be given up; and
that their wickedness would cost the Indians dearly. After the
conference, which in itself was devoid of results, he started
for home. He was followed by Qual-chen, a young chief, and
three other Indians, who killed him and his horse, afterwards
burning the remains of both man and beast in a fire made
for the purpose. The Indians probably thought that in this
way no word would reach the white settlements of the tragedy,
and that no trace would ever be found of Bolon. If they so
thought, however, they were mistaken, as in a few days reports of the agent's death were received from friendly Indians,
and with them other information of the hostile and warlike
intentions of the Yakimas.
Major Gabriel J. Rains, in charge of military affairs along
the Columbia River, at once ordered Major Haller into the
country of the disaffected Indians. With him were one hundred and five men, rank and file. They left Fort Dalles
October 3rd and returned October 10th. They got to Top-
penish, about sixty miles, met a great number of hostiles,
fought with them and retreated; the white men recognizing
the overpowering strength of the savages. They lost five
men killed, nineteen wounded, thirty pack animals, camp
equipage, a howitzer, etc. The Indian losses in killed and
wounded could not be told in this affair or in others following, as it was customary with them to remove from the field
those of their own number either hurt or killed. There was
reason to suppose, however, that their losses during the war,
were greater than those of the whites with whom they were
These events meant war, were war. As the United States
had not soldiers enough in Oregon and Washington Territories
to overcome the Indians and protect the settlements, Governor
Curry and acting Governor Mason called for volunteers, calls
that were promptly responded to. Major Rains determined to
strike at the Yakimas, and in the latter part of October started 8 Thomas W.  Prosch
with a large force, having that purpose in view. For three
weeks or more in November he was there, moving about,
seeing the hostile Indians, approaching them, but in no case
getting near enough to fight them. With him were three
hundred and fifty regulars, and six companies of Oregon
Mounted Volunteers under Col. J. W. Nesmith, the latter
acting in conjunction with the Major's troops but independently. Altogether there were more than six hundred men.
Among the regular army officers was Phillip H. Sheridan,
afterwards Lieutenant General of the army, but then a Lieutenant having a small company of dragoons under him. Much
snow fell, and marching became difficult and almost impossible
in consequence. The expedition was a complete failure, owing
to the slowness, timidity and inefficiency of Major Rains.
One Indian only was killed, and he a helpless old man, by
an Indian with the soldiers. The latter lost several men by
drowning. Fifty-four army mules were lost. The Oregon
men suffered somewhat from the weather and in the matter
of horses. Under misapprehension the Catholic Mission was
burned by the volunteers. Major Rains wrote a bombastic
letter to Chief Ka-mi-a-kin November 13th which, if received
by the Indian, must have astonished and puzzled him. The
authorities were also astonished and annoyed by this military
fiasco. Captain E. O. C. Ord, a few years later a successful
and distinguished general in the army of the Union, but then
in this expedition having three howitzers to look after, at
once filed charges against Major Rains, and demanded that
he be tried by an army court. Rains was immediately transferred to Fort Humboldt, California, by General Wool, who
recognised his incapacity and placed him where he at least
would do no harm. In 1861 Rains resigned, and entered the
Confederate service, where he served during the four following
years as a brigadier general.
Another party of Oregon Mounted Volunteers, at first under
Major Chinn and later under Lieut. Col. J. K. Kelly, went up
the Columbia by The Dalles to Walla Walla.   It was said the Indian War in Washington 9
Indians there had seized, kept and destroyed considerable
property belonging to white people. It was intended to punish
them for these acts. When the Oregonians got to the Touchet
they met the Indians under Chief Peu-peu-mox-mox. While they
kept away they did not appear to be hostile, and the chief who,
prior to this time had been regarded as a friendly Indian, gave
himself and four others as hostages. Later (December 7th)
a collision occurred, in which the volunteers lost eight men
killed and eleven wounded. During the fight the Indian hostages were greatly excited and attempted to escape, all being
killed in the effort. How many other Indians were hurt or
killed has never been known.
War operations west of the Cascade Mountains began
shortly after the Haller expedition to Yakima Valley. The
Indians implicated were chiefly, almost entirely, the Nisqually,
Puyallup, Duwamish, White and Green River tribes, led by
Les-chi, Qui-e-muth, Nelson, Kitsap, Sta-hi and Ka-nas-ket, encouraged and aided by Ow-hi and others from the Yakimas.
The scene of disturbance was in King County, from the town
of Seattle about forty miles to the southeast. October 28th
occurred the first blow, when four men, three women and two
children were killed by the savages in what has since been
known as the "White River Massacre." That same day a party
of white men were ambuscaded in Puyallup Valley, and two of
them killed—James McAllister and a settler named Connell.
December 4th, while in camp at or near the present town of
Auburn, Lieutenant W. A. Slaughter and three soldiers were
killed and four wounded, all belonging to the regular army.
Somewhat carelessly they exposed themselves in the evening,
by standing and moving about in the light of large camp-
fires. Hostiles under Kanasket crept up in the darkness and
brush, and fired upon them with the results indicated. In
these three affairs the Indians sustained no losses. Before
the year ended there were several encounters between the
volunteers and regulars on the one side and the Indians on
the other in which a number of white men were killed and 10
Thomas W.  Prosch
wounded and undoubtedly as many or more Indians. Taken
altogether, the war tragedies and losses of the whites in the
campaign of 1855 were much greater than those of the Indians,
as was to be expected, considering the unpreparedness of the
white people and the character of offensive operations carried
on by the savages.
On October 31st a party of seven men were fired on—A.
Benton Moses, Joseph Miles, George R. Bright, Dr. Matthew
P. Burns, Antonio B. Rabbeson and William Tidd—were
ambuscaded, and Moses and Miles instantly killed, Bradley
and Tidd wounded.
When the war began the forces of the general government
in the Territory were inadequate to the protection of the
citizens. The military posts were Forts Vancouver and Steil-
acoom, with a small force at the former under Major Rains,
and a single company at Steilacoom under Captain Maurice
Maloney. In a few weeks additional companies were sent
from California to both forts, and in January of 1856 came the
Ninth Infantry, the greater part of the regiment going to
Vancouver under Col. George Wright, who assumed command of the district drained by the Columbia River, Lieutenant-
Colonel Silas Casey taking the Sound district. To the
Sound the government sent ships—the revenue cutter
Jeff. Davis and the sloop-of-war Decatur, sail vessels,
and the steamers Active, John Hancock and Massachusetts.
These vessels had a restraining effect upon the Sound Indians,
and the men on board rendered valuable assistance in protecting the settlements along the shore. Acting-Governor Mason
organized the First Regiment of Volunteers in October for
three months' service, and Governor Stevens the Second
Regiment in January for six months' service, and in addition
to these, the Territorial forces included several companies of
so-called Rangers and Indian Auxiliaries. The First Regiment
had no officers of higher rank than captain ; the Second Regiment had two Majors—Hays and Van Bokkelen, and one
Lieutenant-Colonel Shaw.   The Adjutant General was James Indian War in Washington 11
Tilton, the U. S. Surveyor General, and one of the Captains
was Edward Lander, Chief Justice of the Territory. Nearly
one-half of all the men in the Territory rendered military
service during the war. With all these forces, on ship and
land, organized equipped and provided for, the weak and
scattered Indians were unable to contend, and after a few
efforts fled into the timber and over the mountains to the
east. Early in 1856 the war ended as far as attacks by the
Indians were concerned, but not so far as attacks by the
white men.
The only two considerable efforts made by the Indians in
1856 were attacks upon the town of Seattle and the block
house and settlement at the Cascades. Led by Owhi, Leschi,
Nelson and others, Seattle was attacked on the 26th of January. Houses in the outskirts were burned and all day long,
from dawn to dark, a musket fire was kept up by the Indians
in the woods against the people in the village below. Reply
was made .by the men of the place, and by the men from the
U. S. Ship Decatur on shore, as also by men on board, using
the big guns of the war vessel for that purpose. Two white
men in the town were killed. Three of the under officers
of the Decatur—Hughes, Middleton and Phelps—in after years
became Rear-Admirals of the U. S. Navy.
The west side hostiles were now approaching exhaustion
and were quite in the throes of discouragement. They yielded
from day to day, some retiring to places of hiding, and some
coming into the settlements for food and mercy. While in
this unhappy condition a number of small encounters with the
soldiers occurred, but they were not of the Indians' seeking,
and were generally disastrous to them. The chiefs, accompanied by a few of their tribes-men, went over to their allies
in Yakima.
One event occurred, however, that is worth here recording.
For all previous time, as far as known, Indians from the far
north—five hundred to a thousand miles—had been coming
south in large parties and robbing, enslaving and killing the 12 Thomas W.  Prosch
less powerful, less united and less war-like Indians of Puget
Sound. One of these bands of marauding savages made its
appearance in 1856. They went from place to place day after
day, making trouble for both whites and Indians. Captain
Samuel Swartwout, of the U. S. Steamer Massachusetts, was
asked to drive them away. He found them November 20th
at Port Gamble. He proposed to these Northern Indians to
tow their canoes to Victoria, and start them for home, saying
to them that they would not be punished for their offences
if they would go and promise never to return. They contemptuously rejected these offers, said they would do as they
chose, threatened and offered to fight, and were generally
insulting. They did not seem to know that they stood no
chance against a warship, but they soon so found. Their
canoes with one exception were battered to pieces. Twenty-
seven of their number were killed and twenty-one wounded,
their other property being destroyed and they reduced almost
to the point of starvation. The hundred or more survivors
surrendered, and were taken on the ship, landed at Victoria,
and started from there on their return to Southeastern Alaska.
In this affair these northern Indians learned a lesson they
never forgot. One member of the ship's crew was killed and
another wounded.
March 26th, Indians from the Washington side of the river
attacked the little settlement and block house at the Cascades,
on the Columbia. Hostilities continued three days. Sergeant
Kelly and eight men defended the block house. The Sergeant
reported one of his men killed and two wounded; also a boy.
Reports of the losses among the settlers were conflicting, one
as high as twenty-five killed and wounded, another fourteen,
and still other estimates or statements. Colonel George Wright
came to the relief of the besieged people on the 28th. The
hostiles were overpowered, beaten and captured or driven away.
Wright took fifty of them, nine of whom he promptly hanged
for their complicity in this affair. Indian War in Washington 13
Governor Stevens organized, equipped and sent out a strong
force under Lieutenant Colonel B. F. Shaw in June, 1856.
The men were mounted, and they crossed the Cascade Mountains fry the Nachess Pass. They went on to Walla Walla
without event of especial character. There they met a considerable number of Nez Perces, who had taken no part in the
war. July 11th the Indians had a talk with Col. Shaw, and
three days later he had another with Indians of the same tribe
at Lapwai. These talks by nearly a score of different Indians
—head-men or chiefs—were generally of friendly and pacific
character, and gave assurance that as far as they were concerned there would be no war. Some Indians had been
troublesome in eastern Oregon. Learning that they were at
Grand Ronde, Col. Shaw with one hundred and ninety men
went there, and had a fight with them on the 17th of July.
Five of his men were killed and five wounded. He reported
forty Indians killed ; also, as captured two hundred horses and
a large quantity of provisions, most of which were destroyed.
This expedition concluded the military operations of Washington Territory. The inhabited portions of the Territory were
then free from war dangers, and the uninhabited part—the
eastern portion—was left to the regular army to care for.
Ordinarily the military operations of a State or Territory
are confined to the limits of the State, but during this war such
lines and courses of proceeding were disregarded. Enlistments and purchases were made in one for the other, and the
enemy were struck by Washingtonians and Oregonians wherever found without regard to boundaries. The only objection
to this came from the U. S. General commanding the department, and his objections were disregarded by all.
The regulars, or U. S. soldiers, made their chief effort in
1856 in the Columbia River District, including Yakima and
to the north. Beginning in April, and extending over a period
of four months, Col. Wright marched hundreds of miles there,
having under him eleven companies of regulars, or about seven
hundred men. Those next in rank were Lieut. Col. E. J.
Steptoe and Major R. S. Garnett, to whom were entrusted on 14 Thomas  W.  Prosch
several occasions important undertakings. The Indians were
cowed. They either avoided the soldiers, or paltered with them
and deceived them, or came into camp and begged for mercy
and rations, both of which they received. The command spent
much time at Toppenish, Nachess, Kititas and Wenatchee.
Chiefs Ow-hi and Ka-mi-a-kin broke their promises to Col.
Wright, and fled instead of surrendering. Wright made what
appeared to be good arrangements for the Klikitats, who complained to him of being tyrannized over and oppressed by the
more numerous and powerful Yakimas. Col. Wright returned
to Fort Vancouver after this expedition without having met a
known enemy, and without a loss to those under him, or inflicting an injury upon the Indians. He decided to establish two military posts, one being left to Col. Steptoe which Wright called
Fort Walla Walla, and the other to Maj. Garnett which he called
Fort Simcoe. Garnett was a "fire-eater," as hot headed southerners were called in those days. A pioneer citizen writing
of him many years ago, said that he told army officers from
northern states that, if the North and §outh should become
involved in war, as then seemed imminent, he would be on
the southern side, and would put as many of them under the
sod as he possibly could. When the war broke out, in 1861,
he became a Confederate Brigadier, but on his first and only
encounter (July 13th, in Virginia) with the Union forces he
was defeated and slain.
All operations of war-like character were now ended. The
Indians were exhausted and unable to do more in the district
covered by the hostilities of a twelve-month from the early
autumn of 1855. There were episodes, however, apart from
the field of battle that should be mentioned.
From the fact that the Hudson's Bay Company trading posts
and people were unmolested by the Indians during the troubles,
unfavorable comment was frequently made by men who were
prejudiced, uninformed and reckless of statement. It was a
foreign corporation, with rights in the United States recognized
by the treaty of 1846, the dealings of which were largely with Indian War in Washington 15
the Indians. It was to the interest of the Company to maintain peaceable relations with the Indians, and that it was able to
do so in times like those, when others were not so able, was
much to its credit. Notice was taken by the agents of the
condition of war, and as far as the natives were concerned
strict neutrality was enforced. They were advised to keep on
terms of friendly intercourse with all the white people; credit
was refused to those who engaged in the war, and sales of
guns, powder and lead were suspended. With the white people
on the contrary the Company employees were all but allies.
When money was scarce and military supplies needed by the
Territory forces, appeal was made to James Douglas, Chief
Factor and Governor at Victoria. He advanced seven thousand
dollars upon the request of Governor Stevens, which money
was used in the purchase of powder, lead, blankets, coffee,
sugar, etc. Stevens was unable to return this money, and
Douglas had to wait until 1859 for Congress to make the
necessary appropriation. Further, Douglas sent the Company
steamer Beaver over to the Sound to show the Indians that
the Company was opposed to the war, and her presence had
an impressive effect upon them. At one time he regretted the
absence of a British war vessel, preventing him thereby from
giving more substantial help. The position he and his company took may have prevented some of the Coast Indians to the
north from engaging in the war, or at least fair minded people
at the time so thought. The local agents of the Company during the war, occupied positions of great difficulty and delicacy,
in which, however, under the instructions of their Chief Factor,
Governor Douglas, they acquitted themselves commendably.
The war, of course, cost much money. Adjutant General
Tilton and Governor Stevens, May 25th, 1856, estimated that
by September 1st when the terms of service of the troops would
be ended, the costs in Washington Territory would aggregate
$1,899,996. As the U. S. Government was responsible for the
protection of the people, and in like cases had paid in other
states, it assumed the obligation here.    A commission was 16 Thomas W.  Prosch
appointed consisting of two army officers and one citizen—
Capt. Rufus Ingalls, Capt. A. J. Smith and L. F. Grover—the
latter in after years Governor of Oregon and United States
Senator. They carefully went over the claims, and on the
10th of October, 1857, reported that in Washington Territory
expenses had been incurred for subsistence, equipment and
pay of troops amounting to $1,481,975.45. The amount in
Oregon was more than three times greater. The commission
did not take into account property losses of citizens, which
were very great, and for which efforts to secure compensation
were subsequently made with much persistence and diligence.
Congress was nearly two years in acting, when the whole
matter was referred to the Third Auditor of the Treasury,
R. J. Atkinson. He assumed the role of "watch dog of the
treasury." He paid no attention to the report of the Grover-
Smith-Ingalls commission, but took up the original accounts,
and examined them critically and harshly. He reported against
them in 1859, 1860 and 1862, and his reports had influence
with Congress. It was finally determined to pay the volunteers
regular army rates, and to pay for purchased supplies in the
same way. This was unjust to people here, and not at all
like the treatment given Californians under similar circumstances a short time before. Scrip had been issued for the
services and supplies, and this from the beginning had been
at a discount. In some cases it is said to have sold as low as
ten and twenty per cent of its nominal value. Nothing was
paid until 1861, and then slowly and cautiously for a long term
of years. The Treasury Department gave twenty year bonds,
bearing six per cent interest to pay these accounts, delayed
for years, reduced in amount about one-half, and the bonds
themselves being worth less than their face. Some of these
Indian war accounts were unpaid in the 1870's. It is safe to
say that, taking all things into account, the people did not
get one-fourth of the money they should have got, and that
the service rendered the United States was more illy paid
than any other of the nineteenth century in the history of the Indian War in Washington 17
nation. In order to justify this course on the part of the
government the territorial authorities and people were loudly
and frequently slandered as plunderers, instigating and keeping up the war for the purpose of robbing the Indians and
Federal Government.
When the war was really ended, by the yielding and fleeing
of the Indians, Governor Stevens, not realizing the truth of
the assertion just made, committed the error of declaring
martial law in Pierce County. He alleged that five men living
in the country were guilty of treason, treason against the
United States, in that they were giving aid and comfort to
the hostile Indians. The men were placed in the guard-house
at Fort Steilacoom. They were subsequently taken before a
military court, but the court not having jurisdiction discharged
the prisoners. In the meantime, however, an effort had been
made to get the prisoners before the U. S. District Court, and
secure their release by writ of habeas corpus. When the governor heard of this movement, he headed it off by declaring
martial law, April 3rd. Chief Justice Lander proceeded to
hold court in disregard of the governor's proclamation, whereupon a squad of volunteer soldiers took possession of the
court room and removed therefrom both judge and clerk.
The judge was detained for some days, but upon recovering
his liberty went to Olympia, there to hold court, and it was
said to punish the governor for contempt. Stevens headed
off this attack by proclaiming martial law in Thurston County,
May 13th. For eleven more days this condition of affairs
remained, but on May 24th Governor Stevens by a third proclamation abrogated the other two, and restored control to the
civil authorities. Not long after Judge Lander summoned
Governor Stevens before him, and imposed upon him a fine of
fifty dollars for his course in these matters. This whole
affair created a great sensation, as might be expected from an
occurrence so extraordinary. Meetings of the bar members
and of the people were held at Steilacoom, in which the Governor was strongly censured, and the Legislature also con- 18 Thomas  W.  Prosch
demned him, though it is but fair to say that at a subsequent
session the Legislature gave him and his course approval.
Another mistake was made by the Governor not long after
this one of martial law. He evidenced ill feeling towards
Chief Leschi, and made it plain that he should be punished.
He offered a reward for his capture. Tempted by this offer
the chief was betrayed by one of his tribesmen. He was tried
on the charge of murder at Steilacoom. The jurymen disagreed. Upon a second trial Leschi was convicted. He was
sentenced to be hanged by the neck until dead. When the
day of execution came, the Pierce County sheriff frustrated
the court order by connivance with the friends of the Indian
chief. The matter was taken into the Legislature, which
placed it in the Supreme Court, which in turn ordered the
chief hanged at Steilacoom by the sheriff of Thurston County, which order was executed in February, 1858. As the
leader of the war party in western Washington, there was
strong feeling against Leschi, and his trial in the county where
he lived and operated at that time could not result favorably
to him. Nevertheless, it was felt that he had been engaged
in war, that it was customary at the conclusion of war to let
by-gones be by-gones, that he had been greatly punished, and
that further punishment in his case was neither wise nor well.
Though this war was a small one it was full of disagreeable features. One of these was the petulant fault-finding of
General John E. Wool, at the head of the military forces on
the Pacific Coast in 1855-56. He early assumed that the
white people were more to blame than were the Indians, and
he did not hesitate to say so again and again on every available
occasion. Of course, his charges were disputed by the newspapers and citizens of both Oregon and Washington, as also
by Governors Curry and Stevens. Wool maintained that the
war was encouraged and continued for the purpose of employing unnecessary volunteer soldiery, supplying them with
horses, foods, equipment and other necessaries at high rates
of compensation, all to be charged against and collected from
the general government.    He charged them specifically and Indian War in Washington 19
generally with cruelties and acts of outrageous violence and
murder, and made official report of their mishaps, misfortunes
and alleged misconduct on numerous occasions. He ordered
his subordinate officers—Col. Wright, particularly—to arrest,
disarm and send out of eastern Washington Governor Stevens
and others who might be there with him. Wright disregarded
these instructions, and was repeatedly reproved by the General
for so doing. The Governors and Oregon Legislature made
formal complaint of him to Washington City, and demanded
his removal. Subsequently General Wool did what he could to
prevent the people of the two Territories being suitably compensated for their services and expenses during the war The
Secretary of War and President made no answer to any of the
misconduct and like charges so freely presented to them. The
War Secretary at one time reproved the General for his course
in another matter in California, and in still another instance
gave severe disapproval to Captain Cram's Military Memoir,
which General Wool in forwarding had lengthily and heartily
commended. The National Administration was democratic;
Oregon and Washington Territories were also democratic, with
democratic legislatures, governors and congressmen, and it
was not advisable to have unnecessary trouble in the political
family. So, beyond publishing these various letters, reports,
memorials, etc., the acrimonious and discreditable row was
patiently borne and wisely ignored.
Though somewhat irrelevant, perhaps, it may be well to
refer again to the Memoir of Captain Thomas Jefferson Cram,
U. S. Engineer, so highly commended by General Wool, and
so justly condemned by Secretary Floyd. The Captain covered all the ground in Washington and Oregon and all the
subjects. He was unfavorably impressed with both country
and people. Beyond a few regular army officers and their
doings nothing was very good. In what has since been done
in these two States, what they are now, and what they are
going to be and do, he could be glad, if alive, to suppress by
fire every copy of his Memoir of one hundred and twenty-
three printed pages.   He said, for instance, that "there never 20
Thomas  W.  Prosch
will be anything in the interior of this forbidding stretch of
country to induce the movement of such a force into the
interior should a reasonable show of defense be exhibited by
a field force." It was impossible "to defend the mouth of
the Columbia River with any known practical system of fixed
batteries." Besides, fortifications were not really necessary,
as the river "mouth is always blocked by a mass of oscillating
sand," and "at high tide a vessel drawing eighteen feet can
seldom pass the bar." So also on Puget Sound land fortifications would be useless, steam floating batteries necessarily
being the weapons there. "Sea steamers of ten feet draft,"
he said, "ascend the river to the City of Portland." Willamette Valley would sustain a population of one hundred and
fifty thousand. Portland would continue to be the commercial
center of that district, unless it were found that sea steamers
could "at all times ascend to the foot of the Cascades." The
vast region drained by the Columbia River was one which impressed the observer as incapable of sustaining a flourishing
civilization. This, said he, "is the general view to be taken of
Oregon from the Pacific to the summit of the Rocky Mountain
Range, a region only fit, as a general rule, for the occupancy
of the nomadic tribes who now roam over it, and who should
be allowed peacefully to remain in its possession." Speaking
more particularly of Washington this sagacious military engineer, historian and author declared that "the whole Yakima
country should be left to the quiet possession of the Yakima
and Klickitat Indians." Also this : "In the acquisition of this
strip of territory it is certainly not to be denied by any sensible
man who has examined it carefully that the United States
realised from Great Britain but very little that is at all valuable
or useful to civilised man. For the Indians, but for the presence of the whites, it would ever have remained well adapted."
The document was replete with utterances of a disparaging,
belittling, slanderous, false and absurd character, concerning
the people, officials, soil, timber, waters and future possibilities, of the Oregon country given out with high military approval, published by the Government, circulated broadcast, Indian War in Washington
accepted in many places as fair and right, and with no redress
to the country and people maligned, except that afforded in the
lapse of time, long time, and the unconcern and forgetfulness
of the great general public. Fortunately all the army officers
were not like Wool and Cram. Many of them saw things here
under more pleasant lights, and they bore to the end of their
lives recollections of grateful character concerning the days
they spent and the people they met in Oregon and Washington Territories.
The year 1857 passed without war incident. The west side
Indians were thoroughly vanquished and accepted peace on
any terms. The east side Indians, except those in the Klickitat and Cascades vicinities had got off easily, some of the
tribes without a scratch. They were emboldened and defiant.
In 1858 they resented the coming among them of goldminers,
and reports were rife of killings and robberies by them of such
white men. The Stevens treaties had not been ratified by the
Senate, and the Indians yet claimed all the country. They
came down to Walla Walla and stole horses and cattle, including thirteen beef animals belonging to the fort. Col. Steptoe
felt that he must do something for the protection of these
miners and the prevention of depredations. May 6th he started
for Colville with one hundred and fifty-two enlisted men, besides officers and others. In ten days they were in the Spokane country and there on the 17th were attacked by Palouse,
Yakima, Spokane and Coeur d'Alene Indians, estimated by
Steptoe to number ten or twelve hundred. Believing that they
would be overwhelmed by numbers a retreat was begun. A
running fight ensued. In the evening a temporary halt was
made upon a height, which at ten o'clock was abandoned for
a further night march to the south. With help of friendly
Nez Perces the Snake River was crossed, and the soldiers
were soon at Fort Walla Walla. Seven of the men were
killed and fourteen wounded. The losses also included the two
howitzers and other equipments and supplies. Lack of ammunition for prolonged fighting was one of the reasons given for 22
Thomas  W.  Prosch
the retreat. Steptoe made a candid report of the whole affair,
which fact tended in his favor as far as criticisms were concerned. He was one of the very few army officers in the
Territory then who did not subsequently distinguish himself
and secure one or more promotions. He resigned his commission in 1861, and died in 1865.
Of course this attack upon Steptoe must be avenged. The
civil authorities were not interested in it. The military had
changed in leadership and sentiment. General N. S. Clarke
was in command, and he and others were now in favor of the
Stevens treaties, of subduing the Indians, and of opening
the country to the travel, trade and settlement of the white
men. General Clarke ordered a double-headed movement
against the Indians, and in August it started forth. It continued six weeks, and was entirely successful. One division
went from Fort Simcoe under Major R. S. Garnett up the
west side of the Columbia River, through the Yakima, Kittitas,
Wenatchee, Chelan and Okanogan districts, five hundred miles
up and back, meeting few Indians and no real opposition. Ten
Indians were given up to him as those connected with the
killing of white men, and were so accepted and shot. The
other division was from Fort Walla Walla under Col. George
Wright. It went up the east side of the Columbia River
into the Pàlouse, Spokane and Coeur d'Alene districts, encountering the Indians of those tribes and a few others. He
fought them twice, near Spokane, on the 1st and 5th of September. The battles were one-sided in results. His casualties
included the wounding of one man only. The Indians had
about one hundred killed and wounded. He captured one
thousand horses, all but a few of which he killed. He also
destroyed large quantities of food stuffs stored by the Indians
for the winter, and he compelled them to return horses, mules,
guns and other properties they had previously stolen or taken
from the whites. In addition he compelled them to sign treaties
of peace, to give hostages for their future good conduct, and
surrender those who had been most forward in inciting the
previous  hostilities,  twelve  of  whom he promptly  hanged. Indian War in Washington
Col. Wright had a complete little army—infantry, artillery,
dragoons, a corps of friendly ^Tez Perces and his own staff.
In the two divisions—Wright's and Garnett's—were one thousand men, the largest force ever assembled in Oregon or Washington for hostile purposes. Wright came to California in
1852, a lieutenant colonel ; in 1855 he was promoted to colonel,
and in 1861 to brigadier-general. During the war of rebellion he was in command of the department of the Pacific, with
headquarters at San Francisco. In 1865, while on his way to
Fort Vancouver, the steamer Brother Jonathan on which he
was a passenger was lost and he was drowned.
The Indian Wars of Washington Territory were now ended.
The two races had clashed and one been overcome by the other.
The Indians were subdued. Chief Ka-mi-a-kin was driven into
life exile in British Columbia; Chief Ow-hi shot while trying
to escape from the troops; Chief Qual-chen hanged. The
Indians had paid for the killing of the gold-miners and Agent
Bolon. They had learned the lesson, learned by other Indians
before them a thousand and two thousand miles to the east.
No matter what their thoughts and feelings subsequently
were, they were determined in Washington Territory to fight
the white men no more.   It was better so for them and us.
It is not always agreeable to say good things of the Indians,
and not always grateful to say bad things of the whites, in
contrasting them, but it is none the less true, be it said to our
shame, that the most atrocious, fiendish and barbarous acts of
the struggle herein briefly treated were those of our own
people—the cruel, cold-blooded killing of the wife and six
children of Chief Spencer, the killing and mutilation of Chief
Peu-peu-mox-mox, and other deeds of similar character that we
all know of but shrink from mentioning.
In the preparation of this paper, the letters and reports of
the territorial officials and U. S. army officers have been the
oaly published sources of information availed of, and from
them them have been drawn much the greater number of the
statements made. The general matters, deductions, and com-
mait obviously are those of the writer. THE METHODIST MISSION CLAIM TO THE
By  Mrs.   R.   S.   Sha.
In the spring of 1838 Rev. Jason Lee, the superintendent
for the Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church,
sent to a place known as Wascopum the Rev. Daniel Lee and
Rev. H. K. W. Perkins to establish a mission at that point. It
was situated where the city of The Dalles now lies, and it will
be seventy years this spring since the establishment was started.
In 1844 Lee and Perkins left the mission for the East and
Rev. A. F. Waller entered upon the work about that time.
"Mr. H. B. Brewer had been there since 1840, and the mission had accumulated quite a little stock and built six plain,
moderate-sized buildings on the premises. The dwelling house
was a frame filled in with adobe ; the church, school-house,
barn, storehouse and workshop were log, all of which were
estimated to cost about $4000.00 and were built mostly by
Indian labor, and there were about 70 acres under some kind
of an enclosure.
In 1844 Rev. George Gary superseded Jason Lee as superintendent of Oregon missions, with instructions to reduce the
cost of expenses, with the result of closing up all missions in
Oregon except that one at The Dalles. The mission property
in Willamette valley was sold to the Oregon Institute and
to the laymen who had been dismissed from the service of the
Society. Hines states that these sales amounted to twenty-
six thousand dollars. By 1847 Mr. Gary had disposed of nearly all the livestock at The Dalles station and was trying to
negotiate with Dr. Whitman of the American Board Mission
for the sale of the station itself. In the same year before that
had been consummated, the Rev. William Roberts succeede/
Mr. Gary, and an agreement was finally made for the transftf
of the mission station to Dr. Whitman, and in September, 1847,
Messrs. Waller and Brewer transferred the station, a eance,
some farming utensils, grain and household furniture for the
•Read before a meeting of the "Old Fort Dalles Historical Society," 1908 Mission  Claim  to The Dalles 25
sum of $600.00 and actual possession was given. There was a
kind of understanding that religious exercises and instruction
for the Indians should be kept up, but there was no legal obligation to that effect, nor did the Methodist people expect to return to occupy the station if this was not done, for they were
becoming very much discouraged in regard to converting the
Dr. Whitman was supposed to have "purchased the station
primarily for himself and nephew, Perrin B., to whom he
promised the west half of it if he would remain and take care
of it until the spring, when his uncle expected to return and
make his permanent home there."
So Perrin B. Whitman, nephew of Dr. Whitman, a youth
of seventeen years, was placed in charge and Dr. Whitman
unfortunately returned to his own mission station at Waiilatpu,
about six miles west of the present city of Walla Walla, and
where he was murdered November 29, 1847. The following
month, December, 1847, Perrin B. Whitman became so alarmed
at reports of Indian hostilities that he left The Dalles, taking
with him Mr. Alanson Hinman, whom his uncle had sent there
in October from Waiilatpu, as farmer and housekeeper.
From that time on no missionary work was done at The
Dalles and no missionary occupation by either the Methodist
or American Board was ever maintained there. A detachment
of volunteers, with young Whitman's permission, was stationed there and the provisional government continued to use
it till the troops were withdrawn from the upper country after
the Cayuse war closed in the summer of 1848. After that the
premises remained unoccupied except by occasional "travelers
and immigrants until the spring of 1850, when a military post
was established there by the United States and the premises
included in a military reserve."
Now, as I have endeavored to make plain, the occupancy of
the mission and its changes, it is proper that I sketch the
establishing of the town of Dalles City. Both claimed the site
and out of these claims grew the contest. 26
Mrs. R.  S. Shackleford
As early as 1852 the place called The Dalles was occupied
as a townsite for purposes of trade and traffic and has been
so occupied ever since. In 1855 the county of Wasco, which
was organized January 11, 1854, caused the site to be surveyed into lots, blocks and streets and record thereof made.
"In January 26, 1857, Dalles City was made a corporation
with boundaries including said townsite and on April 18, 1860,
entered at the U. S. Land Office at Oregon City the fractional
northwest quarter of section three in township one, containing 112 acres, and including the land so occupied as a town-
site under the townsite law of May 23, 1844 (5 stat., 667; 10
stat., 306), in trust for the several use and benefit of the
occupants thereof according to their respective interests and
now claimed to be the owner thereof accordingly." Besides
these two claims there were others which had to be settled.
Three suits were commenced in September, 1877. That one
numbered 390 was : Dalles City vs. The Missionary Society of
the M. E. Church; No. 391 : James K. Kelly, Aaron E. Wait
and Phebe Humason v. the same; No. 392: James K. Kelly
and Aaron E. Wait v. the same.
As already stated, the three suits were begun in September,
1877, in the State Circuit Court of The Dalles in Wasco County.
To quote from Judge Deady's decision, from which most of the
following information was gathered: "The summons was
served by publication, and on September 12 the defendant
appeared and had the cause removed to the U. S. Circuit
Court, District of Oregon, where they were all three entered
on January 30, 1878. On October 15, 1879, the three causes
were heard together."
The history of the claims prior to this must be explained
and is as follows: When the claims came up the Commissioner
of the General Land Office authorized the surveyor general to
"hear and determine the conflicting claims of the Missionary
Society, Bigelow, and Dalles City to the premises. On February 16, 1860, the parties appeared before him and soon after
"he directed a deputy surveyor to make a survey of the premises (1) as claimed by the Society; (2) as actually occupied Mission   Claim  to The Dalles
by it; and (3) so as to include its improvements with 640 acres
south of the bluff in substantially a square form. Plats of
these surveys—the second one containing 87 acres—were forwarded to the Commissioner by the surveyor general with his
decision [rendered February 2, 1861] that the society was not
entitled to any portion of the premises as a missionary station.
Neither of these 'plats of survey' were approved by the surveyor general in the sense of the statute, because they were
each made upon a hypothesis that the society occupied the
premises or some portion of them as a mission station on
August 14, 1848, which he found not to be true. This decision was affirmed on appeal February 7, 1863, by the commissioner. From there the cause was appealed to the Department of the Interior, where it rested till 1875, when it was
finally reversed. After the decision of the Secretary of the
Interior, the commissioner wrote to the surveyor general advising him of such decision and directing him to furnish that
office with a 'certified diagram of the claim of said Society'
as confirmed by the same. In obedience to this direction the
surveyor general on June 17, 1875, certified to the commissioner a diagram of the first of the three surveys as being a
plat of the survey of the Methodist mission claim at The
Dalles, and upon this the patent was issued as appears therefrom July 9, 1875.
As I have stated, the case was taken before Judge Deady in
1879, who again reversed the decision and ruled that this patent
was void because it was not issued upon a 'plat of survey
thereof approved by the surveyor general, but upon survey
made by the agent of the mission in June, 1850."
"Now, in June, 1850, the agent of the defendant went upon
the ground and surveyed and marked the boundaries of the
claim as he understood them to be, and in 1854 the Rev.
Thomas H. Pearne, its agent, notified the surveyor general
of the territory of the claim of the defendant thereto," and
this is the survey on which the Secretary of the Interior issued
the patent, and is also the same as was described in No. 1 of
the survey of 1860 (as claimed by the Society). 28
Mrs. R. S. Shackelford
Judge Deady declares "a patent could not lawfully issue
upon the survey of the claim by the society itself. A survey
of the grant involved the question of how much land was occupied by the mission and within what limits. To allow the
society to do this would be to make it a judge in its own case."
And, again, he says that "whatever then may be thought of
the correctness of the survey, the proposition that the patent
was issued without a 'plat of survey' approved by the surveyor
general, in the face of all these facts, is not tenable."
"There does not appear to have been any survey prior to
that of 1850, but the occupants and Indians doubtless understood that it should include certain points or places." Judge
Deady did not think that it was ever expected^however, or
intended, that it should extend north of the bluff between that
and the river, a distance of about one-half mile, where were
the villages and camping ground of the Indians and voyageurs
up and down the Columbia River."
Another interesting point was the re-transfer from the
American Board of Missions to the Methodist Mission Society
in 1849. The death of Dr. Whitman had of course prevented
the occupation of the station by the American Board.
The draft of $600.00 which he had given upon the American
Board had never been presented, and in March or February,
1849, soon after the news of the Organic Act was received in
Oregon, "an arrangement had been made between the superintendent of the M. E. Mission and Messrs. Elkanah Walker,
Henry H. Spalding and Cushing Eells of the American Board
for the re-transfer and cancellation of the $600.00 draft." This
was done, as Judge Deady says, "not with any view of resuming missionary work, but to enable it to obtain a grant on account of its occupation prior to September, 1847. To the same
end and to assist it in obtaining damages from the United
States for taking a portion of the station as a military reservation, the defendant in February, 1859, obtained from the American Board a formal quit-claim to the premises, although in
November, 1858, Messrs. Walker and Eells, professing to act
upon a power to them from said Board dated February 28, Mission   Claim  to  The Dalles
1852, for a nominal consideration, had conveyed the premises
subject to the military reservation to Messrs. M. M. McCarver
and Samuel S. White." Rev. Myron Eells once mentioned
this matter to me with much regret, and said his father had
corrected and amended this matter as much as it lay in his
power to do so.
It was urged by the Society that their claim was valid because the U. S. Congress had passed an act June, 1860, for
the relief of the Missionary Society of the M. E. Church.
That was in this way : In 1854 the military reservation at The
Dalles, which had covered a number of square miles, was reduced to 640 acres by order of the War Department to "be
laid off in such manner as least to interfere with private rights."
In the execution of the order 353 acres as surveyed by the
mission agent in 1850 was included in the reservation and
covered all the improvements of the mission. The Society put
in a claim for compensation. This was referred to Major
G. J. Rains, the post commander of Fort Dalles, who reported
in favor of paying them $20,000. This was recommended to
be paid by the house committee on military affairs—$20,000
for satisfaction of the claim for the land and also $4,000 for
the destruction of property upon the mission claim. The committee considered from their evidence that the Society was
still in "possession" of the property on that memorable August
14, 1848, while Judge Deady again emphasized the fact of non-
occupancy and ignores the (to use his own words) "convenient
term possession." (Act, August 14, 1848.) Now the Organic
Law, which was passed on August 14; 1848 (when Oregon became a territory), contained a clause on the Gr<mt to Missions
in Oregon upon which much stress has been legally laid in the
suits between Dalles City and the Missionary Society of the
M. E. Church. To quote, the grant "is not confined to a single
station to each society, but includes as many stations as were
then actually occupied by each society for missionary purposes
among the Indians." Now, note the actual occupation clause
of the grant, for upon that peg hung all the rights of The
Dalles people. 30
Mrs. R. S. Shackleford
He also says that the fact of the claim being advanced by
a powerful and popular religious organization for whose good
will and favor the average congressman in Oregon and elsewhere has a lively regard, may not have been without its
effect on the result, and continues that "in making provision
for payment of this claim, cannot, under the circumstances,
have any effect to invest the defendant with the title to the
premises," and also rules "that all that was done amounted
only to a release, and was not an admission by the United
States, to whom the release was made, that the releasor—the
defendant—ever had any right to either land or improvements,
but only that it asserted some kind of claim thereto which it
was deemed expedient to satisfy and extinguish. But since
this payment of $24,000, there is no longer cause for regarding
it as even morally entitled to anything from the public on account of its missionary operations at The Dalles."
"The conclusions of the court is that the defendant did not
occupy the premises on August 14, 1848, as a missionary station or otherwise and that it was not deterred from so doing by
the danger from Indian hostilities, but voluntarily abandoned
the same before September 10, 1847, without any intention or
expectation of reoccupying it under any circumstances, and
therefore the patent to the defendant was wrongfully issued;
and the decree of the court will be that the defendant be
declared a trustee for the several plaintiffs herein for so much
of the premises described in the patent as is claimed by them
in their several suits, and that the defendant, within ninety-
days, by a sufficient conveyance or conveyances, containing
proper covenants against its own acts, to be approved by the
master of this court, release to the said plaintiffs accordingly
all right and title to said premises, and that it pay the plaintiffs their costs and expenses of suit. (Signed) James K.
Kelly and N. H. Gates for plaintiffs ; Rufus Mallory and John
C. Cartwright for the defendants."
Thus ended the suits numbered 390, 391 and 392, but it
was appealed from the Circuit Court of the United States for
the District of Oregon to the Supreme Court of the United Mission  Claim  to  The Dalles 31
States. Argued March 22, 1883. Decided April 16, 1883.
The history of the case continued the same and the three cases
were tried upon the same evidence used in the Circuit Court
of Oregon, and the statement of the case by Mr. Justice Woods
brings in but one new argument, which is based upon the
following :
"Until the passage of the Act of 1850, called the Donation
Act, no one could acquire as against the government any title
to or interest in the public lands of Oregon Territory, and there
could be no constructive possession of them." Before that
there was no law by which any person or company could
acquire title from the government except by the grant of
August 14, 1848—possessory rights were not recognized." The
most they could claim was the right of actual occupancy as
against other settlers." After briefly reviewing the case, Justice Woods delivered the opinion of the Court as follows : "The
decree of the Circuit Court was, therefore, right and must be
affirmed." Mr. E. L. Fancher for appellant. Messrs. John
H. Mitchell and James K. Kelly for appellee.
Many citizens of The Dalles paid the Missionary Society for
their holdings in the town and I cannot leave this subject
without a brief reference to that part of it. Mr. John C. Cart-
wright levied the assessment for the Board of Missions and
made the settlements. In about 1886 Rev. W. G. Simpson,
then pastor of M. E. Church in The Dalles, went to New
York and succeeded in getting a hearing from the Board with
the result that $23,000 was honorably returned to The Dalles
people who had settled with the mission Board through Mr.
Cartwright. In reference to suits Nos. 391 and 392 I would
say that on Nov. 1st, 1853, Winsor D. Bigelow took a donation
land claim of 320 acres (claim No. 40) at The Dalles and
resided upon it and cultivated it until Feb. 16th, 1860. His
title was derived under act of Congress of Sept. 27th, 1850,
commonly called "The Donation Act," and which gave,
upon certain conditions, to every white settler upon the public
lands, who was over the age of 18 years and being a citizen
of the United States, a half section of land if he were single or 32
Mrs. R. S. Shackelford
a whole section if he were a married man. The records clearly
show full compliance with the law which established his right
to the land. "On Dec. 9th, 1862, he conveyed an undivided
one-third interest of a certain 27 acres on the bluff at Dalles
City, and part of his donation claim, to James K. Kelly and
Aaron E. Wait, plaintiffs in No. 391; and on December 12th,
1864, conveyed the remaining two-thirds of the said 27 acres
to Orlando Humason. Judge Humason died testate on Sept.
8th, 1875, having devised his interest in the 27 acres to
Phoebe Humason, his widow, who became one of the plaintiffs
also in No. 391.
On Dec. 2d, 1864, Mr. Bigelow conveyed to James K. Kelly
and Aaron E. Wait 46 town lots, part of his donation claim and
situated in "The Bluff Addition to Dalles City," which as
plaintiffs they claim in suit numbered 392."
1 I am greatly indebted to the late Rev. Myron Eells, whom I visited some
years ago on the Skokomish Reservation where he was Indian agent for many
years, also to a valuable little book by Mr. H. B. Brewer, who lived, as farmer,
at The Dalles mission from 1840 to 1847. and to the son of Rev. Thomas H.
Pearne, whom I met at Umatilla some years ago and who was here as a boy
with his father, who was agent in the 50's for the missionary society. REMINISCENCES OF WILLIAM H. PACKWOOD
By Fred Lockxxy
Wm. H. Packwood of Baker is one of Oregon's earliest
.pioneers and is the last surviving member of the Constitutional Convention held in Salem in August-September, 1857.
Although he has borne the name of Packwood all his life,
as did his father before him, yet it is not their family name.
His real name is believed to be Duncan. In speaking of the
matter Mr. Packwood said "My forefathers lived in Virginia.
They came from Scotland. In the colonial days some little time
before the Revolutionary War, there was a big flood in the
Potomac River Valley in Virginia. Some river men who were
out in a boat on the swollen stream saw a little boy on a big
tree that was drifting down stream. He was just a little
chap and when he was taken ashore they asked him what his
name was. He was too small and too much bewildered to tell
them what his name was so they called him Billie. He was
adopted by one of the river men and soon grew to be a strong
and vigorous boy. He was a good worker. Part of his work
was to carry loads of wood to the boat. His adopted father
used to attract the attention of strangers and say proudly.
"See Billie, there, pack wood." Having no other name than
Billie, they fell into the way of calling him Billie Packwood.
He grew to manhood, settled on the James River where he
married and raised his family. He was a stockman and he
eventually owned much land and a large herd of cattle.
"I learned of the origin of our family name from Uncle
Elisha Packwood. In 1854 he visited his grandmother in Virginia who at that time was nearly 100 years of age and who
was cared for by two negro slaves. His grandmother had a
large plantation in Virginia on which at that time in '54 there
were about 300 slaves. When his grandfather died he left a
will in which it was provided that all of the slaves who would
emigrate to Texas should have their freedom and whatever
money they made on the plantation for a start in life, when 34
William  H.  Packwood
grandmother died, which was about ten years after grandfather. The will was an old one and was made when Texas
was a republic.
"A good many years ago I met an old Scotchman named
Archie Downey in Baker County. He said his people and the
Packwoods were neighbors in Virginia and that my name was
Duncan. He told me I was of Scotch descent and at the time
of the flood on the James River four Scotch families had
settled higher up the James and that they were all drowned
except one boy. He said that it was a matter of common
knowledge that one of those four families named Duncan was
the only one who had a boy of the age of the one found floating down the river on the tree. I suppose my name really is
Duncan but inasmuch as the name Packwood has served our
family for 100 years or so I guess it is too late to change.
"My grandfather, Larkin Packwood, was born in Virginia
and from there went to Kentucky and still later to Tennessee.
He had ten sons and two daughters. My father, Larkin Canada Packwood, was one of the youngest of the children and
was born in Tennessee. My father's father went to Illinois
with his family and took his slaves with him. When Illinois
was admitted to the Union as a state he moved to Ozark County, Missouri, where he could continue to hold his slaves. One
of the boys, Larkin Canada Packwood, did not go to Missouri
as he had found an attraction which held him in Illinois. He
was married on October 31, 1831, to Elizabeth Cathcart Stor-
mont. She was born in South Carolina and her people came
from Ireland. She had come to Illinois about 1826. My mother
had two sons and four daughters. Two of her daughters died
while children. Another of the daughters, Mary, married a
physician and died in early womanhood, while Agnes, the remaining daughter, died in Coos County about 40 years ago.
My mother died while giving birth to a son, who also died at
the same time.    I was the other son.
"I was born on October 23, 1832, on Jordan Prairie just
north of Mt. Vernon, Illinois. I was named for my grandmother's family, the Henderson's of Kentucky.   My mother's Reminiscences
people had emigrated from the Carolina© and they were
Covenanters. With the Mumfords, Cathcarts, Stormonts
and Campbells they came to southern Illinois, where
they settled. They were all of the old type of God-fearing,
law-abiding, Sabbath-observing Scotch. So strict were they
that no work was done by man or beast on the Sabbath day. All food for Sunday was prepared on Saturday
and no recreation or amusement was allowed on Sunday.
We lived at Sparta for about seven years and went to church
at a little settlement called Eden, a mile east of Sparta. There
were two churches there both covenanters ; one of the Old
Light Church and the other the New Light Church. We went
to the Old Light Church, of which Rev. Wiley was the pastor.
"When I was a boy a man named Adams came to Sparta
and started a saddler's shop. He was a hard worker and a
good saddler, but it was whispered around the community that
he was a Freemason. He apparently could not decide which
church to go to and so stayed in his shop on Sundays and
played the flute. Being a Freemason was bad enough, not
going to church was worse, but playing a flute on the Sabbath
was considered the height of iniquity or the depth of depravity, whichever way you want to put it. At any rate he was
pointed out as an awful example and it was thought by all the
old covenanters that hell was yawning for him. I was a little
chap and one day he asked me to carry in some wood for him
and he paid me well for it. I never could be convinced after
that that he was altogether a bad man.
"A child's recollections are peculiar. The big and vital
things are frequently forgotten while some trifling incident is
remembered. My earliest recollection is of getting a clasp
knife, one with a strong spring, and shutting it. It nearly cut
off my second finger on my left hand and though that was
nearly 80 years ago, the scar is still plain today. The next
thing I remember was the talk in our family of Queen Victoria
being crowned Queen of England. The next thing I remember was the excitement in our family and among the neighbors
by a report of Lovejoy's Free Press newspaper at Alton, Ills.,
being mobbed and his place destroyed.   One thing that stands 36
William  H.  Packwood
out clearly in my recollection is attending a wandering circus in
Sparta. I think it was called Dan Rice's Circus. I also remember very distinctly my first school teacher. His name was Dr.
C. B. Pelton. I went to school to him one year or more.
There was a bad boy and a sort of bully who came to
school. He abused one of the smaller boys who reported
to the teacher. Dr. Pelton, the teacher, sent the smaller
boy out to cut a hazel switch. Presently the boy came
back with a large hazel switch about the size used for whacking bulls. We all expected to see the Doctor pitch in and
give the boy a terrific whipping. The doctor laid down the
savage hazel club and taking the big boy's hand closed his eyes
and raising his head prayed that the boy would have a change
of heart and become better. It certainly settled the bad boy.
It was the most effective punishment the teacher could possibly
have administered. As a matter of actual fact the teacher ruled
that school by love and kindness, a very unusual thing in those
days. Later our teacher went to Springfield, Illinois, where he
became an official of the American Bible Society.
"My next teacher was a young man named McClure. I
went to him about six months. This was all the schooling I
ever had. At that time there were no free schools, they were
all subscription schools. During my two years at school I
studied five books. Noah Webster's blue back Speller, Smith's
Arithmetic, Murray's Grammar, Parley's Geography, and a
small American History. I still remember vividly the picture
in the front of one of my school books. It was a picture of
Justice and the law. Justice was shown as a monkey with a
pair of scales. Two cats claimed the ownership of a piece of
cheese. They brought their dispute to the monkey. The picture showed the monkey placing the cheese in the scales to be
weighed and divided equally between the two cats. The little
story below the picture told how the scales would not balance
so the monkey had to keep taking a bite first from one piece
and the other until he finally ate the whole cheese while the
cats looked on. I have an idea that the law is still administered that way at times. Reminiscences
"In those days we did not know that it was necessary
to have football and other athletic sports, to educate a student.
Not having them and not knowing any better we got along all
right. We played marbles and we played a game of ball
in which there were four corners, four batters and four catchers, "four old cat," as it was then called.
I had to stop school and help my father, who had taken a
subcontract to carry United States mail from Salem to Nashville, a distance of about 35 miles. The mail had to be
taken three times a week. I made the route on horse back
and the mail was carried in saddle bags thrown across my saddle. There were only two stopping places between Nashville
and Salem, both of them being postoffices. Practically the
entire distance was through an unbroken prairie covered with
grass almost as high as a man's head.
"At Nashville they always gave me bob white quail to eat.
They caught them in nets by the hundreds. At Salem I
saw something once that greatly astonished me as well as the
other residents of the town. A doctor took several tomatoes,
sliced them, put salt and pepper on them and ate them. We all
watched him with fascinated horror. We expected to see him
drop dead. We felt sure he would be poisoned by eating the
tomatoes. He said he had dyspepsia and was willing to take a
chance on being killed or cured. At R. G. Shannon's home in
Sparta some tomatoes were grown in his garden just as flowers
were. They were grown for ornamental purposes and no one
ever thought of taking chances of being killed by eating them.
The first tomatoes I ever tasted I ate at Fort Vancouver on the
Columbia River in 1850.
"My mother died in 1844 when I was 12 years old and I
was set adrift. I was thrown on my own resources and it was
a case of sinking or swimming, so I swam. I peddled bread
from a basket on the streets of St. Louis. While peddling
my bread I met a farmer named Ed Drew from Illinois. He
told me he had two brothers who were working on his farm
with him and he wanted me to go with him and learn to be a
farmer.   Farming seemed to promise three square meals a day 38
William H.  Packwood
so I accepted his proposition. I had not been on the farm long
before I joined Mr. Drew and his wife Rhoda in the almost universal fever and ague. It was what was called three-day ague,
and fortunately we were not all sick at one time. On Ed's
shaking day his wife Rhoda and I did all the chores. They had
three cows to milk, quite a few horses to care for and about 50
hogs to feed. I certainly did shake good and plenty when
my third day came around. We all took Green's mixture from
the same bottle. It was thought at that time to be a specific
for the ague.
"We pulled corn from the stock before the corn was quite
dry and grated it up into mush. Milk and mush was our staple
diet. The first Fall I was with Ed Drew he hitched up his two
two-horse wagons and he and I hauled his produce to St. Louis
where hé sold it. We crossed the river on Wiggins' Ferry.
Before my mother's death in '44 my father had run a dairy
four miles east of St. Louis, his customers being in St. Louis.
I remember the big flood in July, 1844. What is now east
St. Louis, then called 'Pap's town,' was one great sea of water.
East St. Louis in those days consisted of a tavern and some
corrals where drovers put their stock up over night.
"Shortly before my mother's death my father moved to Col-
linsville. My father and mother both became very sick and my
mother died on Sept. 8, 1844. My father was not expected
to live and he was not told of her death. My sisters were both
sick, so I was the only member of the family at the funeral.
"After my mother's death my father, when I was between
12 and 13 years old, made trips through Southern Missouri, peddling and buying furs. He took me with him and
I remember on one trip we went by way of Iron Mountain,
and went down into the Black River country. There were
practically no towns or villages and the houses were far apart.
We used to see great droves of wild turkeys.
"We tried to plan it so that we could stay over night where
there would be as many people as possible so that father could
sell his goods.   Some days we would stop where there was a Reminiscences
large family, and occasionally they would send for some neighboring families to spend the night. I was always called on
to read something, and I can remember how proud I used to
be. They thought it was wonderful to see how well a boy of
my age could read. In those days reading was something of
an accomplishment. The people with whom we traded were
poor and hard-working, but they were kind-hearted and hospitable. They lived on what they raised and on what game
they killed. I used to enjoy sitting around the fireplace and
hearing the men tell stories of their adventures and hunting
experiences. I remember stopping one night where there was
an overshot wheel grist mill. The man who owned the mill
had ten grown daughters, all of whom were at home, and all
of whom helped him in the mill. The mill took its pay in toll
taken from the grist.   There was very little money to be had.
"On this trading trip we saw a number of mule teams hauling ore from Iron Mountain to some small furnaces.
"After working for Ed Drew I went to work for Grandfather Stormont, on his farm. He was land poor. He had
hundreds of acres of prairie land and considerable timber
land. Each winter he cleared about 4 acres of timber land.
He ran four plow teams and for that day he was considered a
very thrifty farmer. All of the family worked hard. My
grandmother and her daughters Linda and Naomi were always at work. When they had nothing else on hand they
carded wool and spun and wove webs of cloth. One of the
webs for summer wear and the other for winter wear. The
winter cloth or jean was dyed navy blue, while the summer
cloth was dyed butternut. They made all the clothing for the
"I remember what profound astonishment the invention of
the carding machine created. Grandmother sent some wool
to the carding machine which. came back in rolls ready for
spinning. It was considered an almost miraculous invention.
One of the most profitable sources of revenue my grandmother
had was her flock of geese.    She had nearly 200.    She kept 40
William H.  Packwood
them for their feathers, which she sold for $1.00 a pound. In
those days feather beds were very much in demand.
"Up to 1846 my grandmother had never had a cook stove.
All the cooking was done in a large fireplace which had a
crane with hooks on it on which she hung pots and vessels for
the cooking. The crane could be swung around to bring the
pots over or off of the fire. She had a large dutch oven in
which she cooked all of her bread; the loaves were round and
about six inches thick, and they certainly were delicious. The
sound of the dinner horn when we were called to our meals
was mighty pleasant music. I remember the dinner horn particularly well, for we had a large sorrel mare who, when the
dinner horn was blown, would go to the end of the row, if she
did not happen to be there already, and then you could not
coax or beat her into doing any more work until she had her
"About three miles from my grandfather's there was a mill
owned by Jimmie Lutey. It was operated by mule, horses or
oxen power. Four arms or sweeps formed a circular upright
shaft conveyed the power to the burrs. To each of these
sweeps he hitched a pair of mules or oxen. Twice a week
were mill days. Corn and wheat were the two grains that
were ground. The rule was 'first come first served.' This
rule was never varied from and there used to be great competition among the farmers as to who could get there first.
"Jordan Prairie was skirted with timber on the north and
west sides. A main road ran north and south through the prairie. On mill days from sunrise on you could see dust rising
from the teams coming from the east and west to this main
road. All of them were driving as fast as they could to get to
the main road first so as to get an early turn at the mill. When
they got to the main road there was usually a race for three or
four miles to the mill. My uncle David was an expert with
oxen. He used to begin the training of his steer calves to
work when they were very young. He had one yoke of five
year old long-legged rangy powerful red steers that he kept Reminiscences
for mill days. When we reached the main road going to the
mill there would often be a dozen or more teams. From where
we joined the main road to the mill there was always great
excitement when Uncle David's powerful big steers began
passing the other teams. We usually passed everything on the
road.   Those red steers were a pretty good second to Maud S.
"Automobile riding was not much in fashion in those days,
so the young people took their pleasure in other ways, such as
house raisings or husking bees. They used to fill big rail pens
with corn pulled from the shock. A party would be given and
all the young men and girls would be bid to the party. Sides
would be chosen and at the word "go" the two sides would
commence on the pens alloted to them. They shucked the
corn and threw it into pens and no foot ball contest was more
exciting nor was there greater rivalry. Red ears meant kisses
and the young folks generally managed to smuggle in quite a
few red ears. When all were done a supper would be served,
and such a supper ! After the supper came the games. If you
think the young folks of those days did not enjoy themselves
in spite of the hard work just ask any of the old pioneers
who as girls and boys went to husking bees, house raisings,
spelling matches and singing schools.
"Discipline in the family was much more strict than it is
today. In those days the father and mother were the head
of the house, not the children. Prayers were said both morning and evening and a blessing was asked at every meal.
Every child had his or her duties and they were held strictly
to account for the performance of them. My youngest uncle,
Uncle Max, had to take care of "Old Pud," a Canadian mare
33 years old, that my grandfather had bought during the
Black Hawk war and from whom most of his best horses
came. After the day's work was done the family gathered
in front of the fireplace. Books, magazines and papers were
rare so the children would crack jokes and walnuts, hickory
and hazel nuts and while grandfather told stories grandmother
would sit in her old rocking chair knitting stockings. Occasionally she would raise her 'specks/ look around at all 42
William  H.  Packwood
the family to see how we were getting along and then if all
was well resume her knitting. She was a wonderful manager
and you never heard her nag or scold. She was calm, sweet,
good-tempered and had just a bit of brogue.
"My youngest daughter went to St. Louis a few years ago.
She went out to the old homestead and found that my Aunt
Linda was still there. Aunt Naomi had married and moved
away. Aunt Linda gave my daughter my mother's Bible
and also a daguerrotype of myself taken in 1857.
"In 1846 I quit working for my grandfather and went to
Springfield, Illinois, where my father was working at plastering and brick laying. I worked during the summer of '46
on the farm of an English family named Fields. Mr. Fields
was a fine old man. He received a pension for his services
in the battle of Waterloo. He gave me an idea of military
life. In the winter of '47 and '48 I worked in Glenn's grocery
store in Springfield. I used to meet Abraham Lincoln almost
daily. We used to often meet in the morning as I would be
going to the grocery store. Mr. Lincoln would be going in
the opposite direction to his law office.
"In 1848 I enlisted in the Mounted Rifles. I belonged to j
Company 'B,' Captain Noah Newton. The recruits for the
rifles were first sent to Jefferson Barracks, Missouri. They
were recruited from the western states principally. The men
were enlisted in 1848. At Jefferson barracks we were assigned
to companies. Several companies left Jefferson barracks in
February, 1849, overland, across the state of Missouri, for
Fort Leavenworth. Our Company 'B' started early in February, 1849, and reached Fort Leavenworth about one month
later. Other companies came by steamboat up the Missouri.
We suffered much hardship on the trip. At that time Missouri
was to a large extent unsettled. It was sometimes 15 miles
between houses. The coldest day's travel I have ever experienced was the day we reached Dr. Sappington's, one of the
noted pill makers of his day. Some of the men were so near
frozen as to require lifting from their saddles.   We crossed Reminiscences
the Kaw river in open flat boats, with the ice breaking up and
running in large chunks, rendering the work difficult and dangerous. I do not remember one house from Kaw river to Fort
Leavenworth. Independence was to the north and last settlement on our road.
"As soon as Colonel Loring had all his companies at Fort
Leavenworth, he proceeded to form a camp, which he called
'Camp Summer.' This camp was about five miles from the
fort on the west side of what we called Salt creek. We
moved to this camp late in March, or early in April, 1849.
I remember well that we were in the fort on St. Patrick's day,
the 17th of March, 1849. It was the occasion of a grand military ball, and many officers and men who attended that ball
have since become famous.
"At Camp Summer the companies were recruited to their
full strength. Horses, rifles, sabres and revolvers were issued
and we were drilled—mounted and on foot. The quartermaster, Lieutenant D. M. Frost, and Major Cross of the commissary department, were getting supply trains. My recollection is that there was 200 or more six-mule teams, and supplies
on hand for the trip across the plains. On the 10th of May,
1849, a bright, sunshiny morning, Colonel W. W. Loring broke
camp and the panorama then viewed was one never to be
forgotten. The companies, mounted, filed out in columns of
twos, their arms shining in the sun ; horses gay and prancing ;
sabres dangling by their sides ; officers riding here and there
giving commands. As soon as the regiment was well under
way the quartermaster and commissary trains began to string
out, and in a short time—between 9 and 10 o'clock—the rifle
regiment was on the long journey for Oregon, and Camp
Summer was no more.
"Now, as to why I was not in that long train : The president had appointed General Wilson Commissioner of Indian
Affairs for the Pacific coast, and directed that he be furnished
an escort. . An order was given to Captain Newton of 'B' company to give Captain Robert M. Morris of the Rifles 25 men
of his company for the escort for General Wilson. 44
William H. Packwood
"I was one of the 25 men, and as soon as the regiment
was out of view, Captain Morris moved camp across Salt
creek on the east side, and called it Camp Scott. By the 5th
of June Captain Morris had his quartermaster and commissary
supplies and train ready for the trip. General Wilson and
family, Dr. Birdsall and his daughter, Sophia, and Milton S.
Latham, afterwards senator from California (later Miss Bird-
sail became Mrs. Latham).
"Mr. Latham left us near Fort Kearney and returned and
came around by water to California. Major Reynolds, regimental paymaster, with two wagons and money for the regiment, joined us. With Major Reynolds was M. P. Deady,
then a young shock-headed roustabout, called the 'Red Headed
Blacksmith' by our men.
"All being ready, on the 5th of June, 1849, Captain Morris,
with Lieutenant Haynes of the artillery in command, broke
camp for California. We were five months to a day reaching
Sacramento. We were possibly the last train on the road, and
our stock suffered fearfully. Out of over 200 head of horses
and mules we reached the summit of the Sierras on October 25
with one little light wagon, and I think about 19 head of horses
and mules. This was one of the cholera years, and a year
in which a large emigration had passed on before us, and,
in places, on account of sickness, trains were laid over, and
in consequence the grass was stripped far from the line of
travel. Many a time we sent our stock as much as seven
miles for feed.
"When we reached the Humboldt we had to guard and
herd our stock every night, as the Indians were very troublesome. The Indians stampeded our stock twice. Some of our
animals were found and recovered 15 miles from camp. There
had been given us a 30-foot rope and an iron picket pin with
a ring in the top to tie the rope in. The iron pin was 12 to 14
inches long and three-fourths of an inch thick. With a stampede or break loose, as soon as our horses got on the run the
pins would be jerked from the ground and go flying in the Reminiscences
air and the pins and ropes become entangled together, so as
to tie the h