into camp from the hills. They demanded food and were supplied by Mrs. Murray. This done they began to untie the teams from their fastenings, which the men of the camp resisted, and in the, twinkling of an eye the weapons of savages were in play. An old man was instantly brained and scalped. Adam Smith, Murray's brother-in-law, fell pierced with eight arrows, and others in a like manner yielded to the fatal poisoned arrows. Mrs. Murray, with hay fork in hand, defending the property, was badly wounded with arrows. Only one escaped--a boy who hid underneath a pile of hay. The noise of the fight being heard at a distant farm, parties came in the darkness and carried away the dead and dying. Mrs. Murray had crawled away in the tall, damp grass, and spent the lonely night in agony of pain and horror. She afterwards recovered. The Indians made off with $2,500 worth of property.
PUBLIC SCHOOLS.--Number of districts, 62; school houses, 51; children of school age, males, 1,507, females, 1,301, total, 2,808; qualified teachers employed, males, thirty-one, females, thirty-nine; wages paid teachers for the year, males, $5,343.50, females, $4,909.30, total, $10,252.30; value of school houses, $21,335; value of sites, $1,151; value of books, etc., $3,660.
TAXABLE PROPERTY.--Acres of land, 315,191; average value per acre, $3.54; value of town lots, $272,718; money invested in merchandise, $80,025; money used in manufactures, $13,085; horses, 3,313, value $113,204; mules and asses, 288, value $9,835; neat cattle, 9,123, value $98,517; sheep, 3,173, value $4,238; swine, 7,206, value $7,111; vehicles, 1,820, value $22,569; moneys and credits, $25,958; mortgages, $22,815; stocks, etc., $1,015; furniture, $37,470; libraries, $3,095; property not enumerated, $63,819; railroads, $201,100.40; telegraph, $1,649; total valuation for 1879, $2,103,888.40.
RAILROADS.--The Union Pacific traverses the southern portion of the County from east to west. The Omaha, Niobrara and Black Hills Railroad runs from Jackson, on the Union Pacific northward through the County. Six miles north of Jackson a branch of the Omaha, Niobrara and Black Hills railroad is now being constructed, running up the valley of Beaver Creek through Boone County.
LANDS.--Improved lands are worth from $8 to $30 per acre. The Union Pacific and Burlington and Missouri River Railroad Companies each own a large amount of land here, the price of which ranges from 12 to 16 per acre.
POPULATION.--There are sixteen Precincts in the County, the population of each in 1879, being as follows: Granville, 202; Creston, 205; Looking Glass, 275; Woodville, 226; Pleasant Valley, 309; Humphrey, 324; Sherman, 356; Monroe, 430; Lost Creek, 510; Bismarck, 501; Butler, 622; Columbus, 2,210; Stearns, $40; Walker, 312; Barrows, 392; Shell Creek, 373.
Total, 7,587,--males, 4,125, females, 3,462.
The County Seat, is a prosperous city of 2,000 inhabitants, located on the Union Pacific Railroad, ninety-two miles west of Omaha. It is situated on a wide plateau at the junction of the Loup valley with the Platte, the ground being sufficiently sloping to afford good drainage. It is an excellent business point, and contains many good stores, an elevator, a bank, three hotels, several lumber yards, foundry and machine shops, a fine brick court house, elegant school buildings, seven Churches, and four newspapers-the Journal, the Era, the Independent, and the Democrat. The adjacent country is exceedingly fertile and well settled. The first bridge built across the Platte River is located at this point, and an extensive trade is derived from the country south of that stream.
Is a station on the Union Pacific Railroad, eight miles west of Columbus. It has a very promising future, having been selected during the present year as the starting point of the Omaha, Niobrara and Black Hills Railroad. The railroads are making extensive improvements here, and new dwellings and business houses are going up very rapidly. A good wagon bridge spans the Platte here also, and makes this a convenient shipping and trading center for the settlements on the south side of the river.
Is a new town established during the present summer at the forks of the Omaha, Niobrara and Black Hills Railroad, six miles north
of Jackson. A large elevator, stock yards, depot, several dwelling houses and stores, are now in course of construction here.
Situated in the north-central part of the County, was laid out in 1876, by a German colony. It has about 200 inhabitants, three or four stores, and one of the finest school houses in the County.
MONROE, HUMPHREY, METZ, GLEASON, LOOKING GLASS, STEARNS' PRAIRIE, NEBO, CRESTON, ST. MARYS, WOLF, LINDSAY, FARRALL, and WOODVILLE, are small villages in the County, having from fifty to 200 inhabitants each.
Pawnee County was created by an Act of the first Territorial Legislature, early in the spring of 1855, and attached to Richardson County for election, judicial, and revenue purposes, until the 4th day of November, 1856, at which time it was regularly organized. It is located in the southeastern part of the State, in the second tier of Counties west of the Missouri River, and is bounded on the north by Johnson and Nemaha Counties, east by Richardson County, south by the State of Kansas, and west by Gage County, containing 432 square miles, or 276,480 acres of land.
WATER COURSES.--The three principal streams of the County are the North and South Forks of the Great Nemaha River, and Turkey Creek. The North Fork runs diagonally across the north east corner, cutting off about a township and a half; the South Fork passes northeasterly across the southeast corner; and Turkey Creek flows in a general southeasterly direction through the central portion, each furnishing sufficient water-power for manufacturing purposes. The principal tributaries of the North Fork are Dry Branch and Taylor Creeks; of the South Fork, Jake's Run, and Nigger Branch; and of Turkey Creek, Rock, West Branch, and Johnson Creeks. Ball's Branch, in the central part of the County, is a tributary of the West Branch of Turkey Creek. Mission, Plum, and Wolf Creeks are streams draining the western portion
of the County, and flowing southwesterly into the Big Blue River. Tipp's Branch and Art-Occoto, are small streams in the middlewestern part of the County, emptying into Plum Creek.
CHARACTER OF THE LAND.--Ten per cent. of the County is valley, and the balance rolling or undulating prairie. The larger streams have fine smooth valleys which are separated from the upland, usually, by a range of low rounded hills. The per cent. of untillable land in the County is exceedingly small, and the soil is everywhere of the highest order for the production of all the general crops grown in the State.
CROPS.--Area under cultivation reported for 1879, was 48,580 acres. Winter wheat, 882 acres, 1,656 bushels; spring wheat, 8,908 acres, 68,941 bushels; rye, 1,656 acres, 19,552 bushels; corn, 25,583 acres, 995,207 bushels; barley, 1,241 acres, 30,059 bushels; sorghum, 131 acres, 13,068 gallons; flax, 17 acres, 191 bushels; millet, 425 acres, 1,393 tons; tobacco, 1 1/8 acres, 1,479 pounds; potatoes, 235 acres, 22,418 bushels.
TIMBER.--There is an abundance of timber for fuel in the County, the banks of the streams being skirted with a fine natural growth, and almost every farm having a well grown domestic grove. 598,520 forest trees and 425 1/4 miles of hedging are reported under cultivation.
FRUIT.--42,515 apple, 474 pear, 71,237 peach, 1,454 plum, 15,839 cherry trees, and 17,889 grape vines are reported. The orchards are very prolific, and have been in bearing for several years past.
STONE.--Excellent building stone is abundant along the streams and in the hill sides. A beautiful cream-colored limestone found here is extensively used for building. Sand stone is also plentiful.
COAL.--South of Pawnee City coal of good quality is mined in a seam from twelve to eighteen inches thick. It is preferred to any other coal in the market.
HISTORICAL.--Mr. Christian Bobst, Robert Turner, Jacob Adams, and Robert Archer, the first settlers of the County, arrived at a point on the South Fork of the Great Nemaha, on the 4th day of April, 1854, where they selected claims and located permanently that spring. Mr. Bobst selected one of the best timber claims in
the County--the north west quarter, section twenty-five, town one, range twelve; Mr. Turner located on the south east quarter, section twenty-five, town one, range twelve; Mr. Archer on the south west quarter, section twenty-five, town one, range twelve, and Mr. Adams on the south west quarter, section twenty-four, town one, range twelve. George T. Bobst, arriving shortly after, took the remaining quarter section twenty-five, town one, range twelve.
Mr. Christian Bobst's was the first house erected in the County. After making, the necessary preparations, the party returned to St. Joseph, Mo., where they had left their families and effects, to bring them to their new homes, and before their return Joseph Fries, William Barnes, and a Mr. Dragoo, arrived in the came neighborhood with their families, and located. In the same year, John Morrison, Martin Fisher, Henry Shellhorn and family, and E. J. Shellhorn settled on the South Fork, and James M. Hinton on the North Fork. Mr. Hinton originally held the land now occupied by the Table Rock mill. He first projected the mill, which was ultimately erected by other parties.
In July of this year, James O'Loughlin, and Charles and Arthur McDonald, ascended Turkey Creek, from the South Fork of the Nemaha, as far as the present location of Pawnee City, and going upon the high ground where the house of J. S. Davenport mow stands, they saw a large party of Indians, with ponies grazing, just beyond where the cemetery now is, and deeming discretion the better part of valor, they quietly made their way back to the Nemaha.
Christian Bobst was appointed Probate Judge for Richardson County, by the Governor, in the fall of 1854. His jurisdiction extended over all contiguous settlements west of the Missouri River, no lines at that time having been established. At the same time and by the same authority, Joseph Fries was appointed Justice of the Peace, and Robert Turner, Constable.
In 1855, H. G. Lore, W. S. Lore, and J. P. Lore, with their families, settled on the South Fork, and L. G. Jenkins, Elijah Markee, Daniel Powell, and Elisha Kirkham, on the North Fork of the Nemaha. A. A. Jordan, L. D. Jordan, Eben Jordan, and Charles McDonald, settled on Turkey Creek.
In the spring of this year, the first sermon was preached in the County, by Rev. David Hart, of the Methodist Episcopal Church, at the house of Henry Shellhorn, on the South Fork of the Nemaha. In the fall following, a class was organized by Mr. Hart.
Mr. Henry Shellhorn died on the 4th day of May, 1855, after a short illness; and in the fall following, Mr. John Barnes died, being the first deaths among the Settlers.
During 1856, many families located in the County, among whom were P. M. Rogers and family, on Turkey Creek;. Joseph Steinauer, and others, on Upper Turkey Creek; John Williams, and several families, on the North Fork; and the Thallimers, Dr. A. F. Cromwell (the first physician in the County), and family, on the South Fork; Wm. McClintock, and several others, on Taylor's, or Hogan's Branch; John Jordan and Branick Cooper, on the West Branch of Turkey Creek; James B. Robertson, on Jake's Run; and the Messrs. Buckner, two colored men, on Nigger's Branch.
Hon. John C. Miller, Probate Judge of Richardson County, in accordance with the provisions of the Act creating Pawnee County, issued an order, in 1856, for an election to be held in Pawnee County, on the 25th of August of that year, for the purpose of County organization.
At this election, three localities entered the contest for the County Seat, but neither received a majority of all the votes cast, consequently neither was chosen; but notwithstanding this, when the returns were sent to Archer, the County Seat of Richardson .County, the Clerk of that County, N. J. Sharp, declared the southwest quarter of section twenty-six, town two, range eleven, duly chosen as the seat of Justice of Pawnee County. This point was then called Enon.
Considerable dissatisfaction existing in regard to the election, the matter was brought before Judge Miller, who declared the certificate issued by the Clerk null and void; that no choice of County Seat had been legally made; and ordered a new election to be held on the 4th day of November, 1856.
With the prestige of the certificate already issued in favor of the above named place for the County Seat, immigration rapidly
changed to that point; and when the election of the 4th of November came off, it was found to have a majority of sixteen votes, over its competitors, and was therefore duly declared the County Seat.
At this same election, the following County Officers were elected, to-wit: Commissioners, John C. Peavy, E. W. Fowler and Joseph Fries; Probate Judge, H. G. Lore; Clerk, G. G. Thallimer; Treasurer, W. B. Arnett; Sheriff, Rufus Abbott; Superintendent of Public Schools, Rezin Ball; Surveyor, John J. Lebo; Register, William S. Lore; Justices of the Peace, C. Huntley, H. Billings, A. A. Jordan and J. Adams; Constables, Wm. McClintock, L. F. Roges, J. O'Loughlin and -- Bedgood.
The first Commissioners' Court was held on the 5th day of January, 1857, at the house of Rufus Abbott, at which time the County was divided into three Commissioners' Districts.
The name of Pawnee City was chosen for the County Seat. The town site was surveyed and platted by John J. Lebo; and a public sale of town lots was held by Sheriff Abbott, between January and July, 1857.
During the year 1857, many settlers arrived with their families. In the spring of this year, John Fries' grist and saw mill commenced operation. P. M. Rogers' saw mill, just beyond the west line of Pawnee City, and a mill by J. S. Woods and Eben Jordan were erected; and in the fall the Table Rock water-power saw mill commenced operation. During this fall the most destructive prairie fire ever known in this County, occurred, many of the settlers being burnt out of house and home.
On the 6th day of July, 1857, two mills were levied upon the taxable property of the County for the building of a court house, and in the following year a contract for its erection was entered into with E. W. Fowler. This enterprise, however, was carried no further than the raising of the frame, which so stood until leveled to the ground, in 1860, by a severe storm.
Rev. Mr. Copeland, of the Methodist Church, organized a class, in the fall of 1857, at Ball's Branch.
The first marriages in the County were those of James O'Laughlin to Lydia Adamson, and Richard Clency to Priscilla Adamson, on the 13th of March, 1856, by Joseph Fries, Justice of
the Peace. These were the first and only marriages within the limits of the County previous to its organization.
The first house erected on the town site of Pawnee, City, except Mr. Galligher's blacksmith shop, was that of F. F. Linning, in the spring of 1857. The next was Joseph B. Morton's. Messrs. Linning & Morton were also the first merchants in the town, and Morton was the first hotel-keeper.
The first child born in Pawnee City, was Andrew Perry Linning, son of F. F. Linning, in October, 1857.
The first school house erected (frame) was in the District west of Pawnee City, which afterwards received the classic name of "Rosin Weed Seminary." The first teacher in this building was Miss Sarah H. Ball, now the wife of Hon. J. L. Edwards.
In 1859, the first camp meeting in the County was held at Table Rock.
The first District Court held in the County was on September 8, 1859; Hon. Joseph Miller, Presiding Judge; Wm. McLennan, District Attorney; Allen Blacker, Clerk, and Eben Jordan, Sheriff.
In the year 1860, Independence day was celebrated at Pawnee City for the first time in the County. A general table was set in the grove above Turkey Creek bridge, then only a ford. Judge E. W. Fowler was the orator of the day.
The first building that was burned in Pawnee City was the dwelling of Hon. David Butler, in 1861.
In 1861, Table Rock had obtained a Postoffice, and within the next year Pawnee was blessed with a tri-weekly mail.
During the years 1861-2, bands of horse-thieves were organized throughout the west, including in their numbers men in Pawnee County who long had had the confidence of the people. These bands were popularly known as Jay-hawkers. By the year 1863 this organization had laid their plans with such shrewdness and cunning, that Pawnee County seemed to be within their grasp and at their mercy. This state of affairs ultimately culminated in a determination of the people to protect themselves, and if necessary, take the law into their own hands. Near the close of the rebellion, a fine span of horses, belonging to Mr. Andrew Fellers, was missing. Mr. Fellers and several others, under the leadership of John
C. Peavy, pursued and captured the thieves, with the, horses, in Iowa. They were brought back as far as Table Rock, where the next night a disguised mob took the thieves from the guards by force, and hung them. The leader of the thieves, Catteran, escaped with two or three gunshot wounds in his body, only to be recaptured next day and hung. Many of the citizens of Table Rock, among whom was Elder Giddings, used their utmost efforts to prevent this terrible violation of the law. The effect of this summary mode of dealing with thieves was salutary, and increased the security of life and property a hundred fold. The confession of these men involved several men in Pawnee County hitherto of good standing, who at once left the country.
In 1861, the M. E. Church commenced the erection of their present fine building at Pawnee City, which cost, when completed, near $7,000.
The Christian Church was organized in the fall of 1865, by, Elder D. R. Dungan.
In the summer of 1856, the Presbyterian Church at Pawnee City was organized.
The first Baptist Church in the County was organized on the West Branch, in the fall of 1866, by Elder Robert Turner.
The Dunkards, or German Baptists, have a flourishing organization five or six miles southeast of Pawnee City. The Methodists also organized a Church on the South Fork, at an early day.
The people of the County having voted $15,000 for the erection of a Court House, the Commissioners, in February, 1869, advertised for bids for its erection, the building, to be built of white limestone, forty by sixty feet, and two stories high. The plans and specifications for the building were prepared by Mr. J. L. Edwards, and it was erected in accordance therewith.
Contracts were also entered into the same year, with W. Wheeter, of Nemaha County, for the construction of bridges across the three principal streams of Pawnee County, to-wit: one across Turkey Creek, south of Pawnee City; one across the South Fork, near Fries' Mill, and one across the North Fork, near Table Rock Mill.
PUBLIC SCHOOLS.--The number of districts in the County, in 1879, was fifty-eight; school houses, fifty-three; children of school
age--males, 1,186, females, 1,220, total, 2,406; qualified teachers employed,--males, thirty, females, fifty-seven; total wages paid teachers for the year--males, $3,361.10, females, $5,268.30; total, $8,629.40; value of school houses, $42,826; value of sites, $2,054; value of books and apparatus, $1,254.10.
TAXABLE PROPERTY.--Acres of land, 259,423, average value per acre, $2.80; value of town lots, $50,432; money invested in merchandise, $25,390; money used in manufactures, $3,550; horses, 3,282, value. $90,506; mules, 162, value, $5.040; neat cattle, 8,216, value, $91,318; sheep, 6,604, value, $6,480; swine, 10,246, value, $13,850; vehicles, 935, value, $20,641; moneys and credits, $22,948; mortgages, $14,455; stocks, etc., $4,500; furniture, $1,384; libraries, $775; property not enumerated, $14,490; railroads, $52,210.76; total valuation in 1879, $1,144,506.76.
RAILROADS.--The Atchison & Nebraska Railroad, following the Nemaha Valley, traverses the northeastern portion of the County, a distance of about eleven miles. The surveys for other lines have been made through the County.
MISCELLANEOUS.--The price of lands ranges from $3 to $10, wild, and $5 to $25, improved. There are fifteen Churches, three flouring mills, two saw-mills and one cheese factory, in the County.
POPULATION.--The following is the population of the County, in 1879, by Precincts: Mission Creek, 290; Plum Creek, 328; Turkey Creek, 156; West Branch, 344; Miles, 266; Steinauer, 417; Clay, 631; Pawnee City, 1,042; South Fork, 745; Sheridan, 366; Table Rock, 1,314.
Total, 5,899--males, 3,102; females, 2,791.
The County Seat, is a beautiful little city of 900 inhabitants, situated on Turkey Creek, near the geographical center of the County. It is surrounded by a fine rolling country, and has considerable natural timber in the vicinity. There are also a number of large orchards and vineyards in the neighborhood. It contains several neat Churches, a $12,000 school house, an excellent court house, two newspapers--tbe Enterprise and the Republican--a bank, two hotels, several good stores and minor business places. A substantial bridge spans Turkey Creek just south of the city.
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