History of Porter County, 1923A brief county history written by Deborah H. Shults-Gay . . . .
The following history of Porter County, Indiana, was likely published in 1923 by Deborah H. Shults-Gay (left). The history was published as part of a fundraising effort on behalf of the American Legion and appears to be relatively accurate. Note that this history is believed to have been written at different time periods and later compiled into a final pamphlet for publication. A significant portion of the history was written in 1875, another portion written in the mid-1880s or early 1890s, and the final portion written in 1923.
Shults-Gay, Deborah H. 1923. One of the Earliest Authentic Histories of Porter County, Indiana, From 1832 to 1876. Publication location not provided: Deborah H. Shults-Gay. Unpaged.
One of the Earliest Authentic Histories
of Porter County, Indiana
from 1832 to 1876
DEBORAH H. SHULTS - GAY
This work is dedicated
to our Soldiers and Sailors
wherever they may be on land or sea.
This book is to sell for 15 cents, one-half to be given
to the American Legion.
Copyright secured by Deborah H. Shults-Gay
Porter County is one of the three counties in Northwestern Indiana whose northern boundaries are washed by the shores of Lake Michigan. The southern boundary of the county is the Kankakee River, which extends in its winding and sluggish course, for over twenty miles along its border. The county has an area of 420 square miles. The population in 1870 was 13,942.
The county is low and level in the southern part, and the marshes extend back from the Kankakee from half to three miles or more. Much of this wet land is being reclaimed, and the last three years have witnessed a vast improvement in this respect.
Along the center of the county, from east to west, the water courses divide, and about half the water drains into the Kankakee and the remainder into Lake Michigan, through the Calumet River and its tributaries.
Jackson and Union Townships are the most diversified with rolling lands and ridges of any in the county; but no part of the land is so as to render it unfit for cultivation from this cause.
A number of fine lakes are to be found, the largest of which are Starr and Fish Lakes, each with an area of three-fourths of a square mile. The Calumet River widens out into lake-like sheets of water in the northwestern part of the county, which, with Longinas Lake, Flint Lake and Mill Pond Lake are the only other bodies of water of any importance. A neat steamer, of considerable capacity, plies on Flint Lake for the accommodation of pleasure seekers. Within a stones throw of the last is Long Lake, which empties into Lake Michigan, while Flint Lake empties into the Kankakee. On the dividing ridge between Coffee and Crooked Creeks, there is a singular spring, whose waters divide, part flowing into Lake Michigan, and ultimately into the Gulf of St. Lawrence, while another portion of its waters flow south, and at last into the Gulf of Mexico.
About two-thirds of the county consists of tillable prairies, or oak openings, and the remainder, with the exception of the marshes, is covered with a noble growth of heavy timber.
THE FIRST SETTLEMENT
Northwestern Indiana, including the territory now embraced in Porter County, was held by the original Indian owners until 1832, in which year, and later, they agreed to give up the possession of the hunting grounds, with a view to ultimate removal west of the Mississippi. The Indians were nearly all members of the Pottawattomic tribe, which at one time was very numerous, and extended itself across the entire northern part of the State. Until 1832, there were no permanent improvements, nor farms made by white people in the present limits of the county. The Indian villages dotted the broad expanse at intervals. The numerous prairies and marshes afforded the red men well stocked hunting grounds, while the lakes in its interior and Lake Michigan on the north gave them a plentiful supply of fish. Here and there the traders, mostly Frenchmen, had established their little posts, and drove a lucrative traffic in furs, which they secured in exchange for trinkets, powder, and those articles most in demand by the sons of the forest.
One of the best known of these early traders was Joseph Bailey, or Bye, as he was commonly called by the Indians. He was a Frenchman and his arrival into this country dates back into the first years of the present century. For many years Bailey had been established where Baileytown now is, and here he still made his home when the white men came, and after his Indian friends submitted themselves to their fate, and ceded away the surrounding territory. The Bailey mansion, north and a little west of the county seat, and not far from Lake Michigan, was the favorite stamping-ground, as the pioneers termed it, of the Indian residents in this region. The Pottawattomies held intimate relations with the Towas, a more northern tribe Bailey had married one of the last named tribe, and his widow survived him until within eight or nine years ago, where she died at her home in Baileytown. The widow Bailey had reached an extreme old age, and at the time of her death was the sole remaining Indian to be found in this region, of the large number who made their homes at one time in the Porter County country. With her was removed the last remaining link connecting the colonial times and the savage aborigines with the present civilization and enlightment which have succeeded the Indian's rule on the southern shores of Lake Michigan.
The Indians, influenced, no doubt, by the ease with which they could traverse the water routes and prairies, were migratory in their habits, and often extended their trips as far as Mackinaw. They were usually to be found here in the thick, protecting woods during the winter, and here they were often joined by the Tawas from their Northern homes, who came in the spring, for the purpose of making sugar and hunting. The territory covered by Porter County, was also, at an early day, frequently crossed by the Sac Indians, living to the west. Two of their trails were yet in good condition when the settlers first came, and these were often used by the early immigrants, as the most practicable routes whereby they might reach their new homes in the wilderness. One of these trails best known to the early settlers, was that which forked near Twenty-mile Prairies, on the western border of the County. One branch led the traveler into what is now Washington Township, while the other continued its course nearer the lake.
Among the principal villages of Indians, according to the accounts handed down by the first white immigrants, was Chipuaw, about a mile east of Valparaiso; Tassinong, near the town of the same name in the southern part of the county; and Wanatah, across the Laporte County line. These villages were at times deserted, and at other times inhabited by a few struggling braves and their squaws, and on other occasions fairly teemed with aborigines, so that the population must have been as high as five hundred and even more. Some of the Indians had been nominally converted to the Catholic Church, whose missionaries and priests visited this region from time to time, long before the advent of the first permanent white inhabitants. Among others who came among the Indians was the Rt. Rev. Maurice de St. Palais, now Bishop of the Diocese of Vincennes, who is known to have been at Bailey's house, in the northern part of the county, nearly forty years ago. Bailey's mansion was the place of rendezvous for the priests, and whenever mass or other services were held, it was generally at his place.
The Indians were removed to their Western reservations in 1840, under the direction of Alexis Coquillard, who seems to have had no small influence over the Pottawattomies. In making their treaty with the United States, they had stipulated for the choice of 144 sections of land out of the many broad acres they once owned, and this request was at last granted. A section fell to each of Bailey's children, and in course of time this land, together with the accumulations of the shrewd trader made his descendents quite wealthy. One of Bailey's daughters was married to Col. Whistler, and others became the progenitors of families who have figured extensively as capitalists and business men in the West. Even at the present day an occasional Tawas, and, more rarely, a Pottawattomic, returns to the old Bailey mansion, near Porter's Station, where they revisit the scenes of their former homes.
Early in the winter of 1832-33, there was not a solitary white settler, except the Indian trader, between LaPorte and Hickory Creek, in Illinois. The first to arrive were William, Jesse, and Isaac Morgan, Rozin Bell, George Cline, and Adam S. Cambell. The Morgans led the advance, coming early in the spring of 1833. They, together with Bell, were from Wayne County, Ohio. Cline had been a resident of Union County, Indiana, and Cambell was from Chautauqua County, New York. The last three, with their families, were located in June, in the same year which saw the arrival of the Morgans. These immigrants made their way to the eastern part of the county into what is now Washington Township, where they located on the northern part of Morgan's prairie. There were at that time no county roads by which they could have reached their destination, nor any, in fact, in the county, so the movers followed the Sac trail, passing close to the site of the future county seat, thence making a bend to the north to avoid the heavy timber in Washington Township. Morgan's Prairie was gained from the east way of LaPorte County, through a small portion of which the pioneers were forced to pass before reaching their chosen home. Their situation on the dry and fertile prairie was a favorable one, as they were near enough to the heavy woods to procure an abundant supply of timber, while at the same time they could at once begin the cultivation of the prairie soil without waiting like many who came later and were forced to first subdue the forest. The land had not been surveyed when the pioneer party came, but they courageously erected their cabins and planted crops, confident of securing the land chosen as soon as the same should be laid off by the surveyors. This survey was made in the summer of 1834. In October, 1835, the lands were offered for sale at LaPorte, and from that time on immigration flowed in rapidly, so much so that by the time the county organized, in 1836, we find a considerable population resident in the infant community.
Many of the settlers came from Ohio, and with these there was a strong infusion of native Indians. John Shults was one of those who was born in Indiana, in 1816. He came from Washington County, and settled in Morgan Township, where he died in 1899, leaving an estate of 2000 acres, where some of his descendants still reside. Mrs. Deborah H. Gay, a daughter, lives on the farm, and is widely known in society and politics, and all things pertaining to the upbuilding of the County.
The few of the settlers came from the southern States, New Englanders and natives of New York and other Middle States.
The first flour-mill in the county was built by Elijah Casteel on Coffee Creek, in 1836. It was run by water-power. A saw-mill had been built near the same site, by Abraham Hall, some time before. Another mill was already in operation on Salt Creek in 1836, as is shown by the county records, the builder being one Gossett. The settlers were thus saved the heavy inconvenience experienced by many in other parts of the state, where they were for a long time forced to go a great distance to the mill.
The first blacksmith in the county was Stephen Brayton, who had his shop and settled at an early day on Morgan's Prairie.
The first merchants were Jeremiah Hamill, Dr. Seneca Ball, and Mr. Bishop. These three came shortly after the sale of the lands in the county by the government. Hamill located three miles east of the present site of Valparaiso. Bishop opened his store south of the courthouse square, and Ball opposite the northeast corner of the same.
The first minister was the Rev. Alpheus French, who came here from Ohio and organized a Baptist congregation in 1838, at Valparaiso, after preaching for some time through the county. Elder French died but a few years ago, at Valparaiso, at a ripe old age.
The first minister of the Presbyterian denomination was the Rev. William K. Tallbott, whose name occurs in the county records as early as 1836. Tallbott held religious services in the northeastern part of the county before there were any regular churches to be found, and helped to establish the first congregation and erect the first Presbyterian Church building in the county. This building erected about 1841, was south of and opposite where the county jail now stands. The Rev. William J. Brown was the first pastor installed by the Presbyterians in the county.
The Presbyterians were the first to organize a congregation and erect a house of worship in the southern part of the county About 1837, the Rev. Wilson Blaine organized a congregation at Hebron in the southwest. He was sent out by the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, and after laboring effectively for some years in his new field, left as a missionary to Oregon.
The first Methodist circuit rider was the Rev. K. Armstrong. Their first church was erected in Valparaiso in 1849.
The first schoolhouse in the county was built on Morgan's Prairie, in the year 1836. The building was a rude log concern, erected at a small cost. The Rev. W. K. Tallbott, mentioned above was one of the first schoolmasters in the county, but taught east of the school building on the prairie.
The first physician was Dr. William B. Blachly. He located some four miles west of Valparaiso, in 1837.
The first white child born within the limits of the county was Reason Bell, at present County Auditor of Porter County. Mr. Bell was born January 11, 1834, in Washington Township, near the northern part of Morgan's Prairie. The second white child born in Porter County was John Fleming. He is still living (1923) and is a cousin of the writer of this book, Mrs. Deborah H. Gay
The first official business transacted by the County officers of Porter County was at the first meeting of the County Commissioners, April 12, 1836. Until that time the territory embraced in the county limits had been attached to LaPorte County. The first Board of Commissioners was composed of John Sefford, Benjamin N. Spencer, and Noah Fouts. George W. Turner, the first Clerk of the County Court, and Benjamin Saylor, the first Sheriff, into whose hands the organization of the county devolved, were also present. The first meeting was held in the house of James Spurlock, where the Starr block in Valparaiso now stands. The county was divided into the following townships, viz; Lake, Jackson, Washington, Pleasant, Boone, Liberty, Waverly, Portage and Union. This constituted the first day's work of the Board. On the following, the Commissioners ordered that on election should be held in each townhip. On the 30th of April, 1836, for the purpose of electing one justice of the peace in each township, except Washington, which was allowed two Justices. The election in Washington Township was ordered to be held at the house of Isaac Morgan, who was also appointed Inspector of the election. In Jackson Township, the polls were located at the house of Asahel K. Paine, Samuel Olinger was named as Inspector. The house of Edward Harper was named as the polling place in Lake Township, Harper also acting as Inspector. The election in Waverly Township was held in the town of Waverly; William Gossett, Inspector. In Liberty Township it was held at the house of Daniel G. Kessler, and J. Todhunter was appointed Inspector. In Center Township, at the house of C. A. Ballard; G. Z. Saylor, Inspector. In Pleasant Township, at the house of Henry Adams; William Billings, Inspector. In Boone Township, at the house of Jesse Johnston; Asahel Neal, Inspector. In Portage Township, at the house of Jacob Wolf, Sr; James Spurlock, Inspector. The Board also constituted the townships of Bryant, Ross, and Clark in addition to the above, and ordered an election in the house of Robert Wilkinson in the first, he also acting as Inspector. In Ross Township, the election was ordered in the house of William B. Crook; Benjamin McCarty, Inspector; and in Clark Township, at the house of Charles H. Paine, William Clark, Inspector.
George Cline, John Adams, Peter Ritter and Adam Ault were appointed by the Commissioners as the first County Assessors.
At the May term, 1836, Benjamin McCarty, the first County Treasurer, appeared before the Board, and stated that there were no moneys in his hands, and that none had been received by him, which shows the county finances in a rather unfavorable light. Benjamin Saylor was appointed State and County Collector, and it is hoped had better luck than McCarty.
The first tavern license granted by the Board was to Samuel Haviland, who paid ten dollars for the same.
The first Circuit Court was held at the house of John Saylor. The building was a rough board structure, on what is now the north side of the Court House square in Valparaiso. The site is now part of Block Eighteen in the town plat. The presiding officers were the Hon. Samuel C. Sample, Abraham Hall and Noah Fouts were the Associate Judges. The Court was convened on the 17th day of October, 1836.
The first grand jury which was impaneled at this term of Court, for the purpose of inquiring into violations of law, were as follows: William Thomas, William Gossett, Samuel Haviland, Asahel Neal, John Bartholomew, J. Todhunter, Samuel Olinger, Joseph Wright, James Watton, James Spurlock, Thomas Adams, Peter Cline, William Clark, Robert Wilkinson, and William Snawly. The deliberations of the grand jury were held under a spreading burr oak tree, not far from Saylor's house. The weather being chilly, the jurors started a lively log fire near by, and kept up their session despite a rain storm which came on before they adjourned.
The court adjourned until the following April, after a session of three days. The indictments returned by the grand jury were few in number, and for trivial offenses. The first civil case tried was that of William P. Morse vs. Francis Wiley, on a note. The plaintiff failed to appear at the trial, and was non-suited in consequence. The names of those drawn to serve on the first pettit jury were as follows: William Downing, Elijah Casteel, Asahel K. Paine, Jesse Morgan, Henry Adams, Lewis Comer, John Jones, Charles Allen, David Bryant, Solon Robinson, Rollin T. Tozier, Joseph Wiley, Richard Hawthorn, William Brian, Theophilus Blake, Wilson Malone, Issac Morgan, Warner Winslow, Adam S. Campbell, Jesse Johnston, William Frame, Abraham Stoner, James Ross, and John McConnell.
The first road petitioned for after the organization of the county was for one run from the public square in Porterville, by the way of the farms of Andrew Taylor and James Blair, to the LaPorte road, as it was then known. This was petitioned for June 13, and Wilson Malone, Morris Witham and James W. Turner were appointed Viewers for the same.
The first Court House in the county was completed in 1837. It was a plain two-story frame building, which was still standing in 1875.
The first jail stood on Mechanic street, east of the square, and was built of logs. It was a very secure and substantial building, and remained standing until within two years of the completion of the jail now in use, in 1871. The jail now in use stands on the southeast corner of Franklin and Mechanic streets, and, together with the Sheriff's residence, cost $28,000.
The Court House and County Buildings now in use were completed in 1852, at a cost of $15,000.
The County Asylum is situated on a large farm, one mile and a half southwest of Valparaiso. The value of the buildings, the last of which was completed over one year ago, is about $6,000.
Porter County is traversed from east to west by the Michigan Central; Lake Shore & Michigan Southern; Baltimore, Pittsburgh & Chicago; Pittsburgh, Fort Wayne & Chicago, and Pittsburgh, Cincinnati & St. Louis Railways. The first three are in the northern part of the county; the fourth runs through the central, and the last named through the southern portion. The Chicago & Lake Huron Railway has its terminus at Valparaiso. The Lake Shore and Michigan Central lines were the first to be completed in 1852, at about the same time, and amid much rivalry. The Baltimore line was the last to enter the county, having been completed in 1874.
The first county fair was held in the court house square, in 1855, and continued to be held at that place for several years. The society was flourishing until the war broke out, having purchased a fine fair ground southwest of the town, in 1858, where several exhibitions were held. At the outbreak of the late war, the general excitement and some internal disagrements caused the annual fairs to be suspended, and the original society ceased to exist. A new society was formed in 1870, with Theopilus Crumpacker, President; Reason Bell, Secretary. Five annual exhibitions' have been held since, and the society, through the County Commissioners, has secured a fine fair ground of twenty acres, north of the city. There is a good speed track on the ground, and the annual fairs are gaining in interest. The officers for 1875 are as follows: President, William Rigg; Vice-President, Hiram Loomis; Secretary, John W. Crumpacker; Treasure, Albert E. Letts.
The County officers at the close of the year 1875, are as follows: Auditor, Reason Bell; Clerk, Rufus P. Wells; Sheriff, Robert P. Jones; Recorder, Thomas C. Shephard; Treasurer, John M. Felton; Coroner, William C. Paramore; Surveyor, Myron Campbell; County Commissioners: A. B. Price; A. V. Bartholomew, and S. P. Robbins; Representative, Theophilus Crumpacker; County Superintendent, James McFetrich.
Valparaiso, under the name of Portersville, was the first town in the county of which any plat was recorded. The town plat bears date on the records Oct. 31, 1836. The name of Benjamin McCarty is signed to the record as proprietor for himself, and the attorney for others.
The place was incorporated in 1850, under authority of a special act passed by the Legislature. Obadiah Dunham was Inspector of the election held for the first officers.
Valparaiso was incorporated as a city in 1866, and the first meeting of the City Council was held on the second day of December in that year. The first Mayor was T. J. Marrifield; Clerk, John B. Marshall; Treasurer, John B. Hawkins; Marshal, Anson H. Goodwin; Councilmen, T. A. Hogan, George Porter, J. C. Pierce, Obadiah Dunham, A. H. Somers, and A. W. Kellogg. The officers for 1875-76 are as follows: Mayor, John N. Skinner; Clerk, J. H. Sievers; Marshal, W. C. Sergeant; City Attorney, John E. Cass; Councilmen, Clayton Weaver, E. Vastbinder, L. A. Cass, J. Jones, S. Pierce and M. Barry; Superintendent of the City Schools, William H. Banta.
SCHOOLS AND CHURCHES
The Valparaiso city schools are held in a fine brick building, built in 1871, at a cost of $42,183. Twelve are employed in the building. The Catholics have a parish school which is largely attended.
In 1859, the Valparaiso Male and Female College was started by the Methodists, the Rev. C. N. Sims, President. The property was purchased in 1873, by Prof, H. B. Brown, and turned into the Northern Indiana Normal School, the most flourishing institution of the kind in the State. Beginning with an attendance of but thirty-five pupils, the school had in 1876 an annual attendance of over 2,000.
The Presbyterians had an institution known as the Collegiate Institute, which was started in 1859; Prof. Benjamin F. Wilcox, Principal. The building was purchased by the city, in 1870, and turned into a grade school, after the Collegiate Institute ceased to exist.
The churches in Valparaiso are as follows: 2 Methodist, 1 Presbyterian, 1 Christian, 1 Catholic, 1 Baptist, 1 Unitarian, and 1 Lutheran.
The population of the city, in a city census taken early in 1875, was shown to be over 3,700.
In the way of manufacturing interests, Valparaiso is represented by 2 flouring-mills, 1 large shoddy-mill, 11 sash and door factory, 3 planing mills, 4 wagon shops, 2 marble works, and 3 cooperage works. The Pittsburg, Fort Wayne & Chicago and Chicago & Lake Huron Railways have each round houses and repair shops in the place, giving employment to more or less laborers and mechanics in each. There are also two extensive lumbering establishments, two large foundries and machine shops, three furniture factories and a paper-mill. Large quantities of hay are pressed and shipped from the place yearly.
The commercial interests of the city are represented by three banks, two grain warehouses, one wholesale and jobbing grocery house and a large number of fine retail stores, dealing in dry good, hardware, groceries, etc. There are also two large lumber yards. During the year 1875, a fine opera house was completed and opened for the first time, November 24.
The first newspaper published in Porter County was the "Porter County Republican," which was issued in 1843, by James S. Castle. The paper was printed on a small job press which had been used by Solon Robinson, at the great Battle Ground convention, for the purpose of printing campaign documents. The next paper was started by William M. Harrison, who bought Castle's establishment, and started the "Western Ranger" Democratic in politics. Judge Wm. C. Talcott bought an interest with Harrison, in 1847, and the remainder of the paper in 1849, at which time he changed the name to the "Pratical Observer." Talcott edited the paper until 1857. His successors have been Dr. R. A. Cameron, Talcott & McConnell, and Gil. A. Pierce, now of the "Inter-Ocean," who changed the name of the paper and called it the "Valparaiso Republican." This paper was consoliated with the "Vidette" about 1870. The "Vidette” was started by Aaron Gurney, about the close of the war. The paper was purchased by William C. Talcott, the last owner and editor, in 1874, and it still continues under his control as a Republican newspaper.
A number of Democratic editors made their appearance in Valparaiso after Talcott, who was antislavery in his views, had gone into the Fusion movement, taking with him the "Western Ranger," which, until then, had been the Democratic organ. About 1856, one Miller started the "Porter County Democratic." He was succeeded by Spencer & Spencer and J. L. Rock, now of the "Chicago Times.” Augustus Starr and one Morical also had some experience in conducting the Democratic organ. The Democrat ceased to exist after several years of troubled existence. It was succeeded about five years ago by the Valparaiso "Messenger," conducted by E. Zimmerman with ability and success. Chesterton, originally called Calumet, on the Michigan Southern Railway and the Calumet River, is the second town in point of importance in the county. It is also the only incorporated town, except Valparaiso, in the county. The town does a considerable business in the manufacture of staves, lumber, and in shipping grain.
The Catholic Church in this place is the finest belonging to that denomination in the county. Hebron is the principal town in the southern part of the county, and is on the Pittsburgh, Cincinnati & St. Louis Railway. The other towns in the county are Wheeler, Kouts, Porter, Furnessville, Tassinong, and a few of lesser note.
The first musical instrument in the county was a dulcimer, owned by John Shults. It was bought in New York by Attorney Anthony, for Mr. Shults.
The first funeral preached in the county was by Rev. Lewis Comer of a Mr. Agnew who froze to death on a lone trail. The sermon was preached in Lewis Comer's little cabin in Morgan Township. For many years Rev. Comer performed all the marriages in the county and preached all the funerals. He organized the first Christian Church in the county.
The first grist mill was built in 1836 by Wm. Gossett.
The first marriage license issued by the clerk of this county was May 5, 1836 to Richard Henthorne and Jane Spurlock.
The first saloon was in Bailey town in 1836. Ten dollars was paid for the license to the county commissioners.
In 1838 was the first murder, Francis Staves as a guide shot Mr. Pelton off of his horse as they followed an Indian trail. Staves was caught and after a verdict of murder was hung.
The first county fair 1852. But is was discontinued until 1871.
In 1836 the Governor appointed Benjamin Saylor Sheriff with power to organize the county for which he received $60 from the first Board of Commissioners. The county was divided in ten townships then later into twelve.
In 1836 Porter County was named Porter in honor of Commodore David Porter of the U. S. Navy, who commanded the Frigate Essex in the war of 1812.
Valparaiso, the county seat is 803 feet above sea level. Porter County has an area of 410 square miles.
In 1837 our Senatorial District was composed of LaPorte, White, Newton and Poloski counties. Our State Senator was Charles W. Cathcort, 1837-40; Sylvenus Everts, 1840-43. In 1842 the District was changed to LaPorte, Lake and Porter.
Benjamin McCarthy, 1836
Jeremiah Hamil, 1837
First, Cyrus Spurlock, 1836-39.
George W. Salisbury, 1839-41.
Obedia Dunham, 1850-55.
E. L. Whitcomb, 1855-59.
Thomas Jewel, 1859-67.
FIRST COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
Noah Fowts, 1836.
Benjamin Spencer, 1836-1837.
John Seffon, 1836-1837.
FIRST JUDGE OF CIRCUIT COURT
Samuel Sample of South Bend
First, Jesse Johnston.
First Sheriff, Benjamin Saylor.
COMMON PLEAS JUDGE
First, H. Lawson – Office abolished in 1872.
First Treasurer, Wm. Walker, 1836-39.
The Kankakee drains the souther, part of the county and the Calumet drains the northern part of the county.
The Dunes Park at Waverly Beach of two thousands acres is said to be one of the finest natural parks and an ever reminder of primative age.
JULY 3, 1917 HONOR ROLL OF COMPANY L, THIRD INFANTRY
Following is a complete list of the present number of Valparaiso Military Establishment, Company L, Third Infantry.
Earnest W. Thralls, Captain
Hoston F. Merrian, 1st Lieutenant
Floyd R. McNiece, 2nd Lieutenant
Rea H. Word, 1st Sergeant
Arthur D. Keene, Supp Sergeant
Howard G. Hayes, Mess Sergeant
Hudson J. Deardoff, Sergeant
Hubert G. Schwartz, Sergeant
Frank M. Gay, Sergeant
Charles J. Gibbs, Corporal
Carl R. Schiller, Corporal
Andrew J. Wiseman, Corporal
Irving Peregrine, Corporal
Erwin G. Parker, Corporal
Earl Themanson, Corporal
Elmer J. Emig, Corporal
Edward G. Zarth, Corporal
Edward C. Campbell, Cook
Bertram S. Aiken
Arthur J. Connolly
Florence T. Donohue
Thomas L. Flonnery
John H. Fry
Brantley A. Hyde
Clarence J. Gardner
John S. Stoddard
Harold O. Teiber
Clinton F. Woolsey
Harvey C. Varner
Thomas V. Antron
Joseph L. Allen
Clive E. Bassett
Harvey M. Boule
Lester G. Boule
Armor J. Brough
Forest L. Brown
Lloyd D. Bryant
Edward E. Brendt
Elmer K. Bailey
Louis C. Casanor
Harry L. Clether
Charles W. Clark
Claud E. Comeaux
Harry A. Carlson
Elmer C. Carlson
Benjamin H. Cooper
Leslie L. DeWitt
Spencer A. Davis
Glenn E. Farnham
Oliver B. Fancher
Neil B. Fry
Lawrence W. Flint
Myron R. Fry
Gerald H. Gidley
Charles H. Gilliland
Harry A. Groves
Charles O. Hanson
Phil D. Hamilton
Charles W. Hontchinson
George C. Hiatt
Harry E. Johnson
John A. Krysiak
George J. Jones
Fred B. Kelso
Carl W. Lampert
Raymond L. Lindzy
Edward G. McClure
Edward H. McPherson
Herbert A. Marsden
Neil B. Nichols
Leonard C. Pietsen
Ira W. Reynolds
Virgil H. Smith
Aaron J. Sharp
Alexander L. Travis
Seth N. Walton
Charles D. Williams
Fred W. Wiencken
Harvey M. Weaver
Clarence W. Wooton
N. B.-This list was taken from the Porter County Vidette of July 3, 1917.
We have a fine city of magnificent churches, public libraries, university, best of high schools and grade schools with good roads, bus lines, number of thriving towns, all thanks to the pioneers example. We have drained the swamps, controlled water systems and dotted the county from north to south with homes of thrift and refinement.
When we consider that in so few years intervene between us and the wilderness that our fathers cleared and built homes and coped with wild cats and Indians whose hunting grounds they invaded, we feel their work was brave and lasting.
At night they had a tallow candle to read their month old paper by and warmed themselves by the roaring old fire place in the family living room with high posted beds with trundle beds for the children. The chimney corner was grandmother's favorite place where she knitted the stockings for the family. On rainy days the father by that same good fire place mended the children's shoes or made new ones of calf skin leather while the children poped corn in the ashes.
The time has now arrived when it is the duty of someone to perpetuate the names of their pioneers, to furnish a record of their times for the benefit of the new generations. Have faith in the Government of your father. Show your faith by works to support that Government. Have faith that right will prevail our country first, last and all the time for America has grown from a struggling nation centered along the Atlantic seaboard to a continent wide safe home land for all.
Transcribed by Steven R. Shook, January 2009