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the payment of quit-rents, which had been annually collected by the agents of the Penns, was in. lerrupted for many years, and eventually their recovery was judiciously determined to be barred by lapse of time.
In October, 1753, a treaty of “amity and friendship’ was held at Carlisle with the Ohio Indians by Benjamin Franklin, Isaac Morris, and William Peters, commissioners. The expenses of this treaty, including presents to the Indians, amounted to fourteen hundred pounds.
Shortly after this period, the dispute arose between the governor and council, and the assembly, on the subject of a complaint made by the Shawance Indians, that the proprietary government had surveyed all the lands on the Conodoguinet into a manor, and driven them from their hunting-ground, without a purchase, and contrary to treaty.
The first weekly post between Philadelphia and Carlisle was established in 1757, intended the better to enable his honor the governor and the assembly to communicate with his majesty's sub. jects on the frontier.
The town of Carlisle, in 1760, was made the scene of a barbarous murder. Doctor John, a friendly Indian of the Delaware tribe, was massacred, together with his wife and two children. Capt. Callender, who was one of the inquest, was sent for by the assembly, and, after interroga. ting him on the subject, they offered a reward of one hundred pounds for the apprehension of each person concerned in the murder. The excitement occasioned by the assassination of Doctor John's family was immense, for it was feared that the Indians might seek to avenge the murder on the settlers. About noonday, on the 4th of July, 1763, one of a party of horsernen, who were seen rapidly riding through the town, stopped a moment to quench his thirst, and communicated the information that Presqu'isle, Le Beuf, and Venango had been captured by the French and Indians. The greatest alarm spread among the citizens of the town and neighboring country. The roads were crowded in a little while with women and children, hastening to Lancaster for safety. The pastor of the Episcopal church headed his congregation, encouraging them on the way. Some retired to the breastworks. Col. Bouquet, in a letter addressed to the governor, da. ted the day previous, at Carlisle, urged the propriety of the people of York assisting in building the posts here, and “ sowing the harvest,” as their county was protected by Cumberland.
The terror of the citizens subsided but little, until Col. Bouquet conquered the Indians in the following year, 1764, and compelled them to sue for peace. One of the conditions upon which peace was granted, was that the Indians should deliver up all the women and children whom they had taken into captivity. Among them were many who had been seized when very young, and had grown up to womanhood in the wigwam of the savage. They had contracted the wild habits of their captors, learned their language and forgotten their own, and were bound to them by ties of the strongest affection. Many a mother found a lost child; many were unable to designate their children. The separation between the Indians and their prisoners was heart-rending. The hardy son of the forest shed torrents of tears, and every captive left the wigwam with reluctance. Some afterwards made their escape, and returned to the Indians. Many had intermarried with the natives, but all were left to freedom of choice, and those who remained unmarried had been treated with delicacy. One female who had been captured at the age of fourteen, had become the wife of an Indian, and the mother of several children. When informed that she was about to be delivered to her parents, her grief could not be alleviated. I,” said she, “enter my parents' dwelling? Will they be kind to my children? Will my old companions associate with the wife of an Indian chief? And my husband, who has been so kind-I will not desert him!” That night she fled from the camp to her husband and children.
A great number of the restored prisoners were brought to Carlisle, and Col. Bouquet advertised for those who had lost children to come here and look for them. Among those that came was an old woman, whose child, a little girl, had been taken from her several years before ; but she was unable to designate her daughter or converse with the released captives. With breaking heart, the old woman lamented to Col. Bouquet her hapless lot, telling him how she used many years ago to sing to her little daughter a hymn of which the child was so fond. She was re. quested by the colonel to sing it then, which she did in these words:
" Alone, yet not alone am I,
Though in this solitude so drear;
He comes my every hour to cheer," and the long-lost daughter rushed into the arms of her mother.
Quietude being secured to the citizens by the termination of the Indian war, they directed their attention to the improvement of their village and the cultivation of the soil. No important public event disturbed them in their peaceful occupations, until the disputes which preceded the war of the revolution arose between the colonies and the mother country. The tyrannical sway of the British sceptre over the colonists, found but few advocates among the inhabitants of Carlisle, and when a resort to warfare became necessary, many of them unhesitatingly obeyed their country's call, and bore arms in her defence.
During the war, Carlisle was made a place of rendezvous for the American troops ; and in consequence of being located at a distance from the theatre of war, British prisoners were fre
quently sent hither for secure confinement. Of these, Maj. André and Lieut. Despard, who had been taken by Montgoinery, near Lake Champlain, while here, in 1776, occupied the stone house at the corner of South Hanover street and Locust alley, and were on a parole of honor of six miles ; but were prohibited going out of the town except in military dress. Mrs. Ramsey, an unflinching whig, detected two tories in conversation with these officers, and immediately made known the circumstance to William Brown, Esq., one of the county committee. The tories were imprisoned. Upon their persons were discovered letters written in French, but no one could be found to interpret them, and their contents were never known. After this, André and Despard were not allowed to leave the town. They had fowling-pieces of superior workmanship, but now, being unable to use them, they broke them to pieces, declaring that “no d—d rebel should ever burn powder in them.” During their confinement, one Thompson enlisted a company of militia in what is now Perry county, and marched them to Carlisle. Eager to make a display of his own bravery and that of his recruits, he drew up his soldiers at night in front of the house of An. dré and his companion, and swore lustily he would have their lives, because, as he alleged, the Americans who were prisoners of war in the hands of the British, were dying by starvation. Through the importunities, however, of Mrs. Ramsey, Captain Thompson, who had formerly been an apprentice to her husband, was made to desist ; and as he countermarched his company, with a menacing nod of the head he bellowed to the objects of his wrath, “ You may thank my old mistress for your lives.” They were afterwards removed to York, but before their departure, sent to Mrs. Ramsey a box of spermaceti candles, with a note requesting her acceptance of the donation, as an acknowledgment of her many acts of kindness. The present was declined, Mrs. Ramsey averring that she was too stanch a whig to accept a gratuity from a British officer. Despard was executed at London in 1803, for high treason. With the fate of the unfortunate André, every one is familiar.
The town of Carlisle was incorporated, and its present boundaries fixed, by an act of assembly, passed on the 13th of April, 1782; but the charter was supplied by a new enactment of the 4th of March, 1814. Under the old charter, the style of the corporation was, " The Burgesses and Inhabitants of the town of Carlisle.” Having no council, all corporate business was transacted in town meeting. The early borough records are somewhat imperfect, and the affairs of the corpo. ration appear to have been loosely managed. When the yellow fever, however, in 1793, was com. mitting its ravages in Philadelphia, there was no lack of active exertion, by the inhabitants of Carlisle, to keep from among them the scourges of the epidemic.
In 1794, the army raised to quell the whiskey insurrection in the West, rendezvoused at Car. lisle. Gen. Washington was with them here for some time, and had his quarters in Hanover street, in the second house south of the market square.
Dickinson College. The college is situated at the west end of the town, fronting on Highstreet. The following history of the institution is derived from the pamphlet referred to above.
The original charter of Dickinson College was granted by the legislature in 1783. By that instrument it was determined—" that in memory of the great and important services rendered to his country, by His Excellency John Dickinson, Esquire, President of the Supreme Executive Council, and in commemoration of his very liberal donation to the institution, the said college shall be forever hereafter called and known by the name of Dickinson College.” The faculty was first organized in 1784, by the election of the Rev. Charles Nisbet, D. D., of Montrose,
Scotland, as President, and the appointment of Mr. James Ross, as Professor of Languages ; to whom were added in the following year, the Rev. Robert Davidson, D. D., às Professor of Belles. Lettres, and Mr. Robert Johnston, Instructor in Mathematics. The college, under the adminis. tration of Dr. Nisbet, flourished, as much, perhaps, as the times would allow.
The first edifice erected in 1802, was destroyed by fire in 1804, but another was completed in September, 1805, and is now known as the west college. The college sustained a heavy loss in the death of Dr. Nisbet, which occurred on the 14th of February, 1804. The office of President was exercised pro tempore by Dr. Davidson, until, in 1809, the Rev. Jeremiah Atwater, D. D., was elected. The institution was prosperous under his direction, and the class of 1812 was the largest that had graduated for twenty years. In 1815, President Atwater resigned, and the following year the operations of the college were suspended, and were not renewed till 1821, when the Rev. John M. Mason, D. D., was called to preside, and during the first part of his administration, there was a considerable influx of students; but previously to his resignation, which took place May 1, 1824, the college began to decline, and continued to languish, except for brief intervals, while under the presidency of Drs. Neill and Howe, until 1832, when the trustees determined that the operations of the institution should cease. In 1833, the control of the college was transferred to the Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New Jersey annual conferences of the Methodist Episcopal church by the resignation, from time to time, of some of the trustees, and by the election of others, named by the said conferences, in their stead, until finally a complete change was effected in the management of the institution. By this change, the col. lege took a fresh start, and the organization of the faculty was commenced by the election of the Rev. John P. Durbin as President, and the establishment of a law department under the charge of the Hon. John Reed. About the same time, a grammar school was opened under the direction of Mr. Alexander F. Dobb.
Dickinson College, under the auspices of the Methodist Episcopal church, and under the direction of its able faculty, has hitherto been prosperous, and bids fair to realize the hopes of its early founders. A new and commodious edifice has been erected for the accommodation of the faculty and students, and a suitable building for the use of the grammar school, called Dickinson Insti. tute. A large addition has been made to the libraries, to the chemical and philosophical appara. tus, and to the mineralogical cabinet. The number of students has gradually increased, and at this time there are in the college proper 118, in the grammar school, 60. Total, 178. The Board of Instruction is as follows :- Rev. John P. Durbin, D. D., President and Prof. of Moral Phi. losophy. Merritt Caldwell, A. M., Prof. of Metaphysics and Political Economy. William H. Allen, A. M., Prof. of Chemistry and Experimental Philosophy. Rev. John McClintock, A. M., Prof. of Languages. Thos. E. Sudler, A. M., Prof. of Mathematics. Hon. John Reed, LL.D., Prof. of Law. Rev. Levi Scott, A. M., Principal of the Grammar School. Rev. Thomas Bow. man, A. M., Assistant.
The early settlers of the valley being generally from the north of Ireland, brought with them their attachment to the Presbyterian church; and upwards of a century since, the Presbyterians built a log church on the Conodoguinet, at the "Meeting-house springs.” “The first pastor was Rev. Samuel Thompson.” No vestige of the building remains. In the burying-ground are to be seen several ancient grave-stones emblazoned with coats of arms. The pamphlet mentioned above contains the following notices of the churches in the borough.
Shortly after Carlisle was laid out, a Presbyterian congregation was organized in it. A church was built, and George Duffield, D. D., ordained pastor in 1761. About 1760, a license was obtained from Gov. Hamilton, authorizing the congregation to raise by lottery. " a small sum of money to enable them to build a decent house for the worship of God," and' in 1766, the minister and others petitioned the Assembly for the passage of an act to compel the “ managers to settle," and the "adventurers to pay;" the settlement of the lottery having been for a considerable time deferred” by reason of the “confusions occasioned by the Indian wars." The act prayed for was passed. A short time afterwards, the congregation in the country, then under the care of the Rev. Mr. Steele, constructed a two-story house of worship in town; and some time before the revolution erected the present “ First Presbyterian Church,” on the northwest corner of the centre square. The two church parties differed somewhat in doctrinal views, and were called the “Old Lights," and “ New Lights." Mr. Duffield's congregation erected a gallery in Mr. Steele's church, and the two parties worshipped separately. After the removal of Mr. Duffield to Philadelphia, and the death of Mr. Steele, the two congregations united, and called, in 1785, the Rev. Robert Davidson. In 1786, the congregation thus united was incorporated. In 1833, a portion of the congregation, by reason of a doctrinal dispute, organized another congre. gation, and worshipped in the county-hall till 1834, when they built the " Second Presbyterian
church," on the corner of South Hanover and Pomfret streets. The new congregation was incorporated in the latter year. The First church is at present under the care of Rev. William T. Sprole; and the Second, under that of Rev. Alexander T. McGill.
St. John's church is on the northeast corner of the public square. Its corner-stone was laid in 1825. Robert Callender, George Croghan, Thomas Smallman, and Thomas Butler, presented to the Assembly, in 1765, a petition in behalf of the “members of the Church of England in Cumberland county,” representing that they had “ in part erected a church in Carlisle, wherein to worship Almighty God; but from the smallness of their number, and distressed state of the country consequent upon the Indian wars,” they were unable to finish it ; and praying the house to “ consider their condition, and grant them such relief as they in their wisdom" should deem meet. The same year an act was passed authorizing them to raise a sufficient sum for the de. sired purpose by lottery; but whether they availed themselves of it, does not appear. The church then erected stood until the present one was built near the same spot. An itinerant missionary for the counties of_York and Cumberland, was maintained by the “ Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts,” for several years after these counties were founded. This office, as late as 1766, was held by the Rev. William Thompson, son of the first Presbyterian pastor at the "Meeting-house Springs." The present rector is the Rev. P. H. Greenleaf.
The German Reformed and Evangelical Lutheran congregations were organized about 1765; the latter under the pastoral care of the Rev. Mr. Butler. They worshipped on alternate Sabbaths in the same church,“which stood on the present German Reformed burying-ground,-until 1807, when each congregation erected a house of worship for its own use. The Lutheran church was incorporated in 1811, and is now under the care of the Rev. John Ulrich.
The German Reformed church was located on the lot now occupied by the Preparatory school. building of Dickinson College. Having sold it, they built, in 1827, a church at the corner of High and Pitt streets, which they afterwards sold to the Methodists, and in 1835 erected the one which they now occupy in Louther-street. They were incorporated in 1811. Their pastor is the Rev. Henry Aurand.
Soon after the revolution, the Methodist ministers commenced their labors in Carlisle, worshipping first in the market-place, then in the courthouse, and subsequently in a small frame-building in Pomfret-street, in which last place they formed a class of about 12 members, in 1792 or 1793. Their number increased, and in a few years afterwards they built a small stone house in Pitt-street, in which they worshipped a short time, and then erected a brick edifice in Church alley. Having sold this in 1835, they purchased from the German Reformed congre. gation the stone church on the corner of Pitt and High streets, which they have much improved and beautified. In this they now worship, under the pastoral charge of the Rev. Henry Slicer. The congregation was incorporated in 1838.
The Catholic chapel is built in the figure of a cross. It was erected in 1807, and enlarged in 1823. The lot was at an early day owned by the Jesuits of Conewago, who had upon it a small log church, in which the Catholic congregation worshipped until the present one was built. Their officiating priest is the Rev Patrick Maher.
The Associate Presbyterian congregation of Carlisle was organized in 1798. The lot on West. street, upon which the church is built, was conveyed, in consideration of £6, by the Messrs. Penn, in 1796, to “ Wm. Blair, Wm. Moore, John Smith, and John McCoy, trustees of the Associate Presbyterian congregation, adhering to the subordination of the Associate Presbytery of Penn. sylvania, of which the Rev. John Marshall and James Clarkson" were then members. The building was put up in 1802, and the Rev. Francis Pringle, their first pastor, called the same year. They have now no stationed minister, but the pulpit is occasionally filled by supplies.
There are also three African churches in the borough.
“ The United States barracks are located about half a mile from the town, but within the borough limits. They were built in 1777. The workmen employed were Hessians captured at Trenton. The barracks will garrison 2,000 men. A school of cavalry practice has recently been established at them, by the government, and the buildings handsomely fitted up under the direction of Captain E. V. Sumner, commanding the
There is a remarkable limestone cave 1 1-2 miles from town. The entrance, which is on the banks of the Conodoguinet, is a semi-circular archway, about 7 feet high, wrought by nature's own hand. It contains a number of curious passages and antechambers, and several pools of water, supposed by some to be springs, but probably formed by the drippings from the roof, or by the occasional overflowing of its subterranean waters. “It is supposed by some that the Indians formerly used this cave
as a place of refuge from danger, a deposit for their spoils, and a place of interment for the dead. Human bones have been found in it, but none of those articles usually buried with the Indians."
About four miles north of Carlisle, on a branch of the Conodoguinet, are the Sulphur Springs, in a very healthy, retired spot, surrounded with
Carlisle Springs. the fine scenery of the Blue mountain. The grounds are ornamented in good taste, and the accommodations for strangers are ample. It was formerly a place of great resort. The water bubbles up from the slate formation, from which it derives its strong impregnation of sulphur.
SHIPPENSBURG, the most ancient town in the co., is situated near the western boundary, on the turnpike and the railroad. It is in the heart of a fertile limestone country, cultivated principally by German farmers, with a few descendants of the ancient Scotch-Irish pioneers. It was formerly rendered very brisk by the wagoners' business, which has been broken up by the railroad. Means' run, a branch of the Conodoguinet, turns a number of mills at the town. The borough was incorporated 21st Jan. 1819. This place, in 1750, was for a time the seat of justice of the county. Population in 1810, 1,159; in 1820, 1,410; in 1830, 1,808 ; in 1840, 1,473. The region around Shippensburg was settled at a very early day. The old Presbyterian church at Middle Spring, (2 miles out,) was one of the first established in the valley, under the old presbytery of Donnegal. The venerable Mr. Moody, the present pastor, has been in charge about forty years. He was preceded by the Rev. Dr. Robert Cooper, who remained in charge about thirty-five years, and before him was the Rev. Mr. Blair, who had been in charge but a short time. The Presbyterian church in town is of more recent origin, the records extending no further back than the last war, (1812–14.) Rev. James Walker, who retired in 1820, was the first clergyman; Rev. Thomas M. Strong, Henry R. Wilson, and James Harper-still there-have since succeeded each other. The Seceders appear to have founded the earliest church in town, and have recently ejected the others in a suit at law for the church property on an ancient title deed. The earlier settlers here were Messrs. Bard, M'Ewen, M'Connell, Reynolds, and McClay, about 100 years since.