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Reminiscence of a Famous Shopkeeper of 50 VeiirH Ago lu Wilkes-Itarre—A Piece or Original Poetry Advertised l>y Hint. Mb. Recobd: You want original poetry
of Wyoming. Here is a sample of 50 years
What! You don't want it?
All Hail! Lovers of hiarli flavors! and well dressed Oysters (both fried and stewed* arc requested to call at inj old stand on the West Sid,* of the Pnhlic Square, or at my new Oyster Establishment ili'the cellar of Major O. Porter's Hotel on River Street, where they will find Oysters as well as other ref reshments served np at short notice. Samuel Whioht.
Who was Sam Wright?
What a question. As if everybody didn't know the only man who could fry and slew oysters. A man of portly presence and fixed shade of color, who never sold lager beer; the inventor, or discoverer of the Imperial Beverage, (a lost art) under whose ministrations Constitational Prohibition was neither needed nor thought of.
No. I am no Rip Van Winkle; but this village like that of "Falling W'aters" is much changed. What is fame or reputation if nobody remembers Sam Wright?
In a few years, perhaps, there will be people asking "Who was Tommy Robinson." whose small beer was equal to trie Imperial Beverage.
Ask Dr. Ingham, Capt. Dennis or Gbn. Dana, not that either can be expected to remember so far back as half a century, but the story must have been still fresh in their early youth: how one training day the courteous inventor of the "Imperial" wrote: "The compliments of Samuel Wright to Capt. H. B. Wright requesting the pleasure of his Company at his Old Stand on West Side nf the Public Square," and how the tired and thirsty commander about to dismiss his company, construed the invitation in a most liberal sense and astonished the proprietor by ordering his line of march in full array to the place of entertainment.
Compare the "menu'' at the "Old Stand" with that of Kennedy or of Lohmaun today:
8amnel Wright, by day and by night.
Will serve up fine OYsTKKB, you know. 1 have them on hand, and more at command.
On the Square and at Porter's below. If yon call for a heart, or even a tart,
I'll furnish them both if vou please. Mince pies 1 have too, or plumb pudding in lieu.
As well as dried beef anil gissl cheese.
Wilkes-Barre, Nov. 20, 1834.
Can you reject this? o.
Niaoaba Falls, N. Y., Sept. 23, 188«—. Editob Recokd: I read in your paper this week asking, who is Sam Wright? I remember him well as a popular and favor
ite proprietor of a restaurant, in one of low old buildings on the west side of Public Sqare, more than 50years ago. Every body large and small, old and young knew Sam, and he was respected by all who knew him. He was a member of the Methodist Church and a devoted christian man. Many a time have I heard his sonorous voice raised in devout prayer at their meetings and I remember his fondness for joining in the singing, which as a boy amused me: as his voice was a good imitation of the Scotch bag pipe: and can imagine I hear it now ringing in my head. Sam Whs a character and was never boycotted on account ot his sable color. I have a vivid recollection of getting the most delicious peach pie and soft ginger cake at Sam's saloon that any boy ever got at any otner. So much for my memory of Sam Wright. 8. Petteuonk.
A Liar of the Last Century.
The Bloomsburg Iit')mblican of Sept 16 has discovered in an old newspaper a letter, from which it would appear that our Fenii sylvania climate and country wag not very attractive to the red-coated hirelings who came over to assist in crushing the rebel patriots of the American colonies. The letter is dated January 18, 1778. and was written by a Hessian officer in the British Army. Of the general character of the country he writes:
"If the Honoiable Count Penn should surrender to me the whole country, on condition that I should live here during my life, I should scarcely accept it. Among one hundred persons, not merely in Philadelphia, but also throughout the whole neighborhood, not one has a healthy color, the cause ot which is the unhealthy air and bad water." This is caused, he says, "by the woods, morasses and mountains, which partly confine the air, and partly poison it, making the country unhealthy. Nothing is more common here," he continues, "than a fever oiice a year, then eruptions, itch, etc." This dire picture reaches a climax later on where he declares: "Nowhere have I seen so many mad people as here. . . . Frequently the people are cured, but almost all have a quiet madness, a derangement of mind which proceeds from sluggish, not active blood. One cause is the food. . . . The milk is not half so rich, the bread gives little nourishment."
In regard to climatic influences, this veracious chronicler writes. "The thunder storms in summer and the damp reeking air in spring and autumn are unendurable. In summer mists fall and wet everything, and then in the afternoon there is a thunder storm. In winter when the trees are frosted in the morning, it rains in the afternoon."
It is on the Btbjectof snakes, however, that thin writer's descriptive ability shines with the clearest luster He prefaces his story with the mild statement that "There is no scarcity of snakes. The great black snake has been found near the Schnylkill lately, quite near our camp. A countryman cutting wood was chased by one recently. • ■ • • There is nothing, however, more terrible than the big rattle snake, which is from twelve to sixteen feet long and kills by a glance. A countryman in my quarters lost a relative in this way some years ago. He had gone hunting, and seeing a bear stand still, aimed at and shot it; scarcely had he reached the bear, when he was obliged to stand motionless, remained thus awhile, fell and died. All this was caused by a rattlesnake, which was perched in a high tree."
Centennial of Luzerne County. These days in which we live are prolific with centennial observances, but it would be churlish to say that there are too many of them. They serve a good purpose and though —in the absence of circus and mountebank features—comparatively few people attend the gatherings, yet the interest in them is great and there will be thousands of people who will read with eager enjoyment the reports in the local papers of Saturday's observance, and when the detailed proceedings are published—as they will be—by the Historical Society the volume will be stored away as a valuable contribution to our fund of local history. Most people want to take their dose of historical research ad libitum, whenever, however, and wherever wanted— without expending the energy necessary upon attendance at a public meeting. Very much on the principle thatsome people nowdays have a telephone wire running to the ulpit of their favorite preacher, and thus ear his sermons without having to go to church.
But seriously, an event such as was celebrated on Saturday is no mean one and there are brought together a vast deal of historical data that might otherwise be lost. It is not very electrifying work for the man of antiquarian tastes to rummage among the "dead and useless past," and he needs some incentive like a centennial celebration to drive him to its performance. Probably nearly every one of the papers was written under just such pressure—au appointment to write on a certain topic—a lack of time in which to do it and consequently a rush in the few remaining hours to complete the task assigned. But when done the work remains, —it may be of great value to coming generations,it may be of very little or no value.
What mighty changes have come over this county in the brief space of a century! Made up originally of the territory now
composed in Luzerne, La-kawanna, Susquehanna. Bradford and Wyoming Counties, it contained in 1780 about 2.300 taxable*— cwrhaps 15,000 inhabitants. In one hundred »» irs this number has swollen to 200 times this amount, or according to the census of 1880, 337,827 souls. Of these, present Luzerne claims almost one-half, making it one of the most densely populated, the most wealthy, the most thriving communities in the United States.
No name more worthy than that of the Chevalier de la Luzerne, could have been been bestowed upon a county which was to become great, wealthy and populous. De la Luzerne was an officer in the French army, serving in the Seven Years' War. Abandoning arms for affairs of state, he was appointed Minister from the Court of France to the United States in 1778. He made his home in America for five years and became an idol of the people. In 1780, when our army had scarcely a dollar in its coffers and when our Government Treasury was depleted to the last degree, Luzerne raised money on his own responsibility to tide over the crisis which threatened the stiusjgling colonists with destruction. Afterwards he was sent by his home Government to the Court of St. James, and in 1781), when the Federal Government was organized, Jefferson, then Secretary of the State, by order of President Washington addressed a letter to the Chevalier de la Luzerue, acknowleding his pre-eminent services and the apprecia tion of them by the American people. The naming of a county in Pennsylvania in his honor elicited from him a letter breathing a spirit of love for the Nation, whose unpromising fortunes he h <d espoused in the hour of adversity and which he had lived to see crowned with victory. We do well, even a hundred later, to reverence his memory, and the memory of all the brave pioneers in the work of laying the foundations ot this Republic and of this county. If we of to-day Eniild as well as they what fancy can picture nation and county a century henre!
The poems of "Stella of Lackawanna." (Mrs. Harriet Gertrude Watres, of Scranton, deceased,) are in the hands of a large publishing house in Boston, and will be issued in book form in the conrseof two or three months. The volume will be embellished with R splendid steel portrait of the gifted authoress, and the work will without doubt command a large sale. State Senator L. A. Waters is a son • f the lamented dead, and Dr. H. Hollister, the veteran historian of Lackawanna County, is a brother.
In 1815where Scrautou proper now stands was a wilderness.
LtZEKNK COUNTY POSTOFFIC'KS.
One Huuflred and Four of them— Town* vhlps Id which Located A LlHt that Is I -etui Tor Reference.
Probably not every body is nware that Luzerne County has U > 1 postoffices, yet such is the fact. Many of the names will be new to the general reader and not one person in A hundred can tell offhand in what part of the county the several offices are located.
In a few instances a borough has a different postoffice name. Laurel Run Borough's postoffice is O iver's Mills. The postoffice in Pleasant Valley Borough could not be so named as there was already a Pleasant Valley m Bucks County. Consequently Pleasant Valley's postoffice is Avoca (recently called Marr). There is a Pleasant Hill in Ross Township but it conld not be so called as there is such an office in Lawrence County. It is therefore named Sweet Valley.
IJeach Haven Salent
Hear' reck Hear Creek
Black Ridge Sngurloaf
(Vane's Mills Jackson
( ooyngliam Sugurh »af
D^liyjjk.'.' Bu t lei
Fades Creek . v Ijtke
Fairmonnt bprings Fairmounl
Forty Fort Kingston
(ilen Bummit Wright
Gowen Black Creek
Grand Tunnel Plymouth
Haniing F xeter
Harvey ville Huntington
Hazle Brook Foster
Hunlock < reek Hunlock
Huntington Mill* Huntington
,-'s l.-.k- Lehman
Luzerne, (formerly Mill Hollow,) Kingston
Miner's Mills Plains
Mountain Grove Black Creek
Mountain Top Wright
New Columbus Huntington
Oliver's Mills, (Laurel Run Borough).
Peely, (Warrior Run), Hanover
Pike's ( reek Lehman
l'lainsville, fL. V. RR Station) Plains
Port Blnnchard Jenkins
Reil Hock Fairmonnt
Kcyburn .' Union
Roaring Brook Hnnlock
Hock Glen Black Creek
Sandy Rnn F'oeter
•Shickshinny Salem and Union
St. John's Butler
Sugar Notch Sugar Notch
Sweet Valley Ross
Town Hill Huntington
Town Line Union
Upper Ijehigh Foster
West Nanticoke Plymonth
White Haven Foster
Yates, (latesville), Jenkins
Offices with an asterisk, (•), are money-order offices,
A Large Kagle MioL
[Pittston Gazette.] A splendid specimen of the bald e,°gle was shot y esterday in the vicinity of Ransom by Fred Hoffner, in company with Frank and Henry G. Weeks, who were ont for a day's tramp through the country. The eagle dropped with a broken wing and a bullet through its body. The bird measured six feet and eight inches across the wings and three feet from beak to tail.
In 1810 the Luzerne County Agricnltnral Society was first organized.
The Supposed Meteorite.
Appended in the extruded description of a supposed meteorite in the collection of the Wyoming Historical and Geological Society, from a paper recently read before the Society by Dr. Charles F. Ingham.
This mass of mineral was left in charge of this society by Mr. J. Crocket, of Kosa Township, Luzerne County, where he obtained it in ploughing on his farm in a locality which seemed to be that on which a luminous body or meteorite had fallen. He is therefore of the belief that this is that body. My investigations lead me to an opposite opinion, for the following reasons:
First, That the external surface does not correspond with the descriptions universally given of meteorites. M. Daubree. member of the Institute of Mines and Inspector General of the mines of France, in an article on the synthetic experiments relative to meteorites, says, "What is first remarked on examining meteoric stones, is a black crust which covers the whole surface: this crust is in general of a dull appearance, but in some alluiniuous and particularly fusible meteorites it is of a glittering aspect, so as to resemble a varnish. Its thickness is less than one millimetre (ce-twentyiifth of an inch), and it is plainly owing to a suoerficial fusion which the stone has undergone for a short time, being the result of incandescence produced by friction through the atmosphere." And this we Bud in a specimen belonging to this society while the Ross Township stone is totally without it and has no other indication of its having been heated.
Secondly, and of great import, I find the spHcific gravity of the Ross Township specimen only 2 018, whereas the specific gravity of rn-teorites, as reported, ranges from 3.200 to 7.020, an average being r> 24. The Polish specimen has a gravity of 3.003, and it is strongly attractable by the magnet; yet it has no magnetic power, and hence no polarity inherent. The Koss Township specimen gives no evidence whatever of magnetic influence, although my tests were applied to an external fluke, which should have had the greatest energy of the whole mass. And this is in accord with my analysis of the mineral by which I get but the faintest evidence of the presence of iron, and not a tr:ice of nickel. 1 found the mass made up of silica, alumina, lime, magnesia, potassa and, as above stated, a faint trace of iron, as also some bismuth.
In these elements, taken in connection with the specific gravity 2.003, we have a close approximation to the mineral Anor thite, its specific gravity being 2.730. Anorthite belongs to the section of feldspathic compounds. Now, if the mass in question is not a meteorite, and did not
reach its place of rest by a traverse through the air, the question follows, where did it come from? The surface-rocks of Luzerne County are not of the feldspathio class, nor do we find them in force until we approach the St. Lawrence River and the Great Lakes. This would seem to be making ont a very remote point of origin for the specimen, involving a very long overland journey to reach its location in the mountains of Pennsylvania. But that the great proportion of the drift found throughout this county came from equally remote sources we have the strongest lithoiogic evidence; for among the stones of the gravel we find a very large amount of the Potsdam sandstone, this stone being at the base of the lower silnrian formation, and being the beginning of the paleozoic series, or those bearing the fossil evidence of life on earth. The nearest point to us, northward, at which this sandstone has a surface spread, is in St. Lawrence and Franklin Counties, the northeast corner of the State of New York; where, in the Adirondack mountains, it appears prom inently. I therefore assign to the force that brougnt the Potsdam sandstone to us, the no more difficult task, that of having brought the specimen to Ross Township.
An Historic Log Chapel.
The Media American recently contained an article by Philip Lennon on "The (>ld Log Chapel at Neshaming in Bucks County." It was the pioneer seminary for aspirants to the Presbyterian ministry a century and a half ago. It was six miles south of Doylestown, twenty miles out of Philadelphia. When in America in 1730 the celebrated evangelist, Whitfield, preached here to 3000 people. The deed for the ground, dated 1728. was given by James Logar, to his cousin. Rev. William Tennent, an Irish emigrant, who shortly after his arrival renounced his allegiance to the Church of England and joined the Philadelphia Presbytery. The gift consisted of fifty acres of land and the part of it on which the college stood is said to have been thp Indian burying ground. The log college. 20 feet by 30 feet square, was for years the only institute south of New England where young men could be prepared for the ministry.
The Log College flourished under Mr. Tennent for twenty years, when its place was eminently supplied by kindred institutions thereabouts. From its walls came many noted preachers of Scotch-Irish de scent. Four of his own Bons were ministers, one of whom, Gilbert Tennant, preached eloquent sermons to stir up the people during the French and Indian War. A cartload of these sermons were very opportunely discovered in an old lumber room of Dr. Fianklin's when the American patriots were hunting for paper to make cartridges after the British evacuated Philadelphia, in June 1778. The sermons were utilized as cases for cartridges, and told effectively alterwards on the retreating British in the battle of Monmouth.
The Rev. Charles Beatty, an Irish Presbyterian, who was chaplain with Dr. Franklin in the army on the Lehigh, in 1756, was educated here. He was an emigrant with a good classical education, but compelled to make a living by peddling. Halting one day at Log College, he accosted the professor familiarly in classical Latin. After some conversation in which the peddler evidenced religious zeal, Mr. Teunent said, "Go and sell the contents of your pack and return immediately and study with me. It will be a sin to continue a peddler, when you can be so much more useful in another profession." Beatty became an eminent preacher. He was present at the coronation of George HI.
While chaplain with Dr. Franklin's army on the Lehigh, during the French and Indian War, an incident is related worthy of record. The soldiers were allowed a gill of rum every day in addition to their regular stipulation, one-half being dealt out in the morning and the other in the evening. On Dr. Beatty's complaining to Dr. Frank lin, of the soldiere not being punctual in attending service, the latter suggested, "It is, perhaps, below the dignity of your profession to act as a steward of the rum, but if you were to distribute it out only just after prayers, you would have them all aboutyou." Mr. Beatty profited by the advice and in future had no reason to complain of nonattendance. A few hands measured out the liquor after prayers regularly. He died at Barbadoes, whither he had gone to collect money for the New Jersey College in 1771.
Scarcely a vestige of those old college times now remains about there—save a fire crane, said to have been used by Mr. Tennent in hi" own house, and a part of the old wall, a foot and a half thick, in the end of a kitchen attached to an old house there. Some old coins bearing the date 1710 were discovered there years ago. Not a vestige remains of the temple whose roof echoed often the loud, earnest preachings of truth.
Auother Sullivan Expedition Journal.
We have received from .Mr. Justin VVinsor, corresponding secretary of the Massachusetts Historical Society, a valuable pamphlet of 4o pages, of which the following is the title page inscription:
Sullivan's Expedition Against the Indians of New York, 1779. A Letter from Andrew MiFarlaud Davis to Justin Winsor, corresponding secretary of the Massachusetts Hisoncal Society. With the Journal of VS illiam
McKendry. Cambridge: John Wilson and Son. 1880. Pp. 45.
Mr. Davis' letter gives a list of 32 published and unpublished diaries, journals or narratives of the Sullivan expedition, though the one in the present pamphlet has never before been published. It is stated that the journal of George Grant has been printed in the Wyoming (Wilkes-Barre) Republican. Adam Hobley's journal was published in the appendix to Miner's "History of Wyoming." The diary of John Jenkins, a lieutenant in Capt. Spalding's Independent Wyoming Corapauy, and guide to the expedition, is in the possession of Hon. Steuben Jenkins, of Wyoming.
The writer of this particular journal, William McKendry, was a lieutenant in a Massachusetts regiment in active service during the years 1777-1780. The original journal is now owned by Mr. William Henry McKendry, ot Ponkapoag, Mass., of the Harvard class of 1882.
The writer was at Cherry Valley at the time of t he massacre. He was with Clinton's column in Sullivan's expedition. He contributes some valuable and interesting information, while many of the brief notes of engagements with the Indians are as fascinating as notion. Here is a thrilling entry dated November 11, made at Cherry Valley: "Alarm at 11 o'clock. Mr. Hammtll coming from the Beaver Damwas fired upon by ye Indians and was wounded. Being on horse he escaped to the fort half a mile distant, and alarmed Col. Alden. Immediately came on 442 Indians from the Five Nations, 200 Tories, under command of one Col. Butler and Capt. Brant; attacked headquarters. Killed Col. Alden and 14 men. Took Col. Stacy prisoner, also Lieut. Col. Holden and 14 men. Killed of ye inhabitants, 30 persons; took 34 inhabitants prisoners. Burnt 20 houses, 25 barns, 2 mills. N. B. A rainy day. Nov. 12. Sent out and fetched in Col. Alden and buried him under arms with tiring three vollies over his grave. Brant came with 100 Indians to attack fort ye second time, but receiving two or three shots from the cannon oave back. Left ye fort at 3 pm. and brought in a No. of dead bodies. Nov. 13. Brought in Hugh Mitchell's wife and four children, all sculpt, with a No. of other dead bodies."
The entries relative to the passing of the victorious army through Wyoming on its return, in October, 1779, is interesting, bnt not given with as much detail as could be desired.
On (let. 4 the army, aftt r a short but thorough campaign of 3t5 days had left Fort Sullivan (TiogaJ on its return to Enston, the soldiers taking the precaution to destroy the fort or stockade before evacuating it. The entries then go on as follows: