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In 1795, two young men, whose names are unknown, came to Wilkes-Barre from Philadelphia with a small press and a few cases of type. They printed " The Herald of the Times," the first newspaper published in the county. Prior to this date, all notices, advertisements, &c., were put up on the town sign-posts, the first of which was erected in Wilkesbarre, in 1774, on the river bank. "
The Herald of the Times" was issued for a short period, and was then sold by the proprietors to Thomas Wright, and published by Josiah Wright under the name of the "Wilkesbarre Gazette." The first number was dated November 29th, 1797, and bore the following motto : — " Let party rage, let malice vent her spite, Truth we'll revere, and we shall e'er be right." The Gazette, though a small, was a well-edited paper. It was 10 by 16 inches in size, a little larger than a sheet of foolscap paper, and, at $2 per annum, was sustained by upwards of 300 subscribers. In 1801 it ceased to be published. In the last numbers of the paper Mr. Wright gave the following notice : — " I intend to send a boat up the river in March or April next, to receive the grain that may have been collected on account of newspapers."
In 1801, Asher Miner established "The Luzerne Federalist," at Wilkesbarre, and the first number was issued on the 5th of January. Mr. M. was a practical printer, having served seven years with Master Green. He had worked in the office of the Gazette, and, it appears, won at the same time the affections of his employer's daughter, Miss Wright, whom he afterwards married. The Federalist was a larger paper than the Gazette. Still it was of very moderate dimensions, for two reams of its paper were placed in an ordinary bag and conveyed on horseback from the paper mill in Allentown to Wilkesbarre; and this was done once in two weeks. The press on which the Federalist was printed was brought from Norwich, Conn., on a sled, by Charles Miner and S. Howard. In reference to this circumstance, the venerable Mr. Miner thus speaks in his late letter to the Pioneer Society : '*' So strange a piece of machinery was a wonder along the road — the thousand and one inquiries — What is it? His patience being exhausted, Mr. Howard was wont to reply, " We are taking it to Wyoming. They are terribly troubled there with mice, and this is timber for mouse-traps."
In 1802, Charles became associated with Asher Miner in conducting the Federalist, which they ably edited until 1809, when it was transferred to Steuben Butler and Sidney Tracy. These latter gentlemen, in 1811, enlarged the paper, and changed its name to "The Gleaner," with the motto, " Intelligence is the life of liberty." The editors, in their address to the public, said, " We intend to make ' The Gleaner' as great a favorite with the people as Ruth ever was with the liberal and gallant Boaz, and we hope, like her, ' The Gleaner' will find favor in the readers' eyes and that the measures of barley will not be forgotten." The Federalist had been the organ of the party bearing that name, and the change of name to " The Gleaner" did not alter its political character.
In a few months Mr. Tracy withdrew from the establishment, and was succeeded by Charles Miner, who, in connection with Mr. Butler and others, ably conducted " The Gleaner" until 1818, when the enterprise was abandoned.
" The Susquehanna Democrat" was established in Wilkes-Barre, by Samuel Maffet, in 1810, with the following motto : " The support of the state governments, in all their rights, is the most competent administration for our domestic institutions, and the surest bulwark against anti-republican tendencies." It was the organ of the Democratic party, and was of the same size as the Gleaner, being 11 by 17 inches. Both of these papers were exceedingly warm in the advocacy of their principles and views, and they were accustomed to pour the hot shot into each other with no unsparing hand. Especially was this the case on the approach of an election, and when offices were to be filled.
In 1824 the "Democrat" was sold to S. D. Lewis and Chester A. Colt, and by them published until 1831, when Mr. Lewis sold his interest to Luther Kidder. In 1832 Colt sold to Conrad, who transferred his interest to Mr. Kidder, who became the sole editor and proprietor. In 1833 Mr Kidder sold to James Rafferty and C. Edwards, who issued the paper about one year, when it was purchased by Dr. Christel & Co., in whose hands it expired.
" The Wyoming Herald" was established in Wilkes- barre, by Steuben Butler, in 1818, soon after "The Gleaner" had ceased to be published, and beneath its title was placed the appropriate words — " He comes, the herald of a noisy world, News from all nations." This paper exhibited a marked improvement in its materials and workmanship on its predecessors, but was still, like them, published weekly, at $2 per year in advance. In 1828 it was enlarged, and published by Butler & Worthington until 1831, when Mr. W. withdrew, and Asher Miner became associated with Mr. Butler. This copartnership continued until 1833, when the establishment passed into the hands of Eleazar Carey and Robert Miner. These gentlemen conducted the paper until 1835, at which time it was merged in " The Wyoming Republican."
" The Wyoming Republican" was established in Kingston, in 1832, by S. D. Lewis, and was edited with ability by that gentleman until 1837, when the press and materials were sold to Dr. Thomas W. Miner, and removed to Wilkesbarre. Dr. M., in conjunction with Miner S. Blackman, edited and published the " Republican" until 1839, at which period it was purchased by S. P. Collings, and united with " The Republican Farmer." We feel that we hazard nothing in saying that the " Republican," from its birth until its death, was one of the best and most ably-conducted papers in the country, and no one can peruse its old files without lively interest and admiration. " The Republican Farmer" was established in Wilkes-Barre, by Henry Pettibone and Henry Held, in 1828, and in 1831 Mr. P. sold his interest to J. J. Adam. In 1833 the materials were purchased by B. A. Bidlack and Mr. Atherholt, and in 1835 it became the property of S. P. Collings, who remained its editor and proprietor until 1852, when the establishment passed into the hands of S. S. Benedict, and was merged in " The Luzerne Union" .
The " Farmer" was a thorough democratic paper, and, besides the talents of its able editors, it was sustained by the literary and political contributions of several distinguished gentlemen. In its columns may be found articles from the pens of Andrew Beaumont, Judge Scott, Dr. T. W. Miner, and others. Two of its editors became representatives of the United States government in foreign lands, and died in the service of their country. Bidlack lies buried in South America, and the bones of Ceilings are beneath the sands of Africa. "
The Luzerne Democrat" was established in Wilkes-Barre, in 1845, by L. L. Tate, and was afterwards sold to Chester Tuttle. In 1852 it became the property of S. S. Benedict, who changed its name to " The Luzerne Union." In 1854 it passed into the possession of S. S. Winchester. In 1855 Mr. Winchester sold to Mr. Bosea, who shortly after transferred it to Waelder & Neibel. They, in 1858, sold to E. S. Goodrich, who sold in 1859 to Mifflin Hannum, the present editor and proprietor.
" The Daily Telegraph," the first and last daily news-paper in the county, was commenced at Wilkesbarre, in 1852, by E. Collings & H. Brower. It survived eight weeks, and was then sold to M. B. Barnum & W. II. Beaumont, who started " The True Democrat" in opposition to "The Luzerne Union." In 1853 the name was changed to " The Democratic Expositor," edited by James Kaferty. In 1855 the materials were removed to Scranton, and the " Spirit of the Valley" was issued by Messrs. Alleger & Adams.
In 1840, "The Northern Pennsylvanian" was issued at Wilkesbarre, by W. Bolton, and after one year it was removed to Tunkhannock. "
The Anti-Masonic Advocate" was established in Wilkesbarre, by Elijah Worthington, in 1832, with the motto : — " Pledged but to truth, to liberty, and law, No favor sways us, and no fear shall awe." In 1835, the press was sold to Eliphalet "Worthington, who published the paper one year, and sold to J. Foster. In 1838, Mr. Foster sold to Amos Sisty, who changed the name to " The Wilkesbarre Advocate," and for several years edited and published it with distinguished ability, often furnishing its columns with genuine and beautiful poetry from his own pen. " Liberty and union, one and inseparable, now and for ever," was his motto ; and he adhered to the principle therein expressed with peculiar tenacity until his death. In 1843, the paper passed into the hands of S. D. Lewis, and, in 1853, Mr. L. sold to W. P. Miner, who changed the name to " The Record of the Times," under which title Mr. M. continues to publish one of the best papers in the country.
" The Democratic Watchman," a German paper, was established in Wilkesbarre, in 1841, by J. Waelder, and, in 1851, it was sold to R. Baur, who is still the editor and proprietor.
" The Truth" was first issued in Wilkesbarre, in 1840, by B. C. Denison, and in a few weeks was enlarged to super-royal size, and called "The Democratic Truth."
" The Literary Visitor," royal octavo size, was established in Wilkesbarre, by Steuben Butler, in 1813, and was continued until July, 1815. It was an able literary paper.
" The Wasp," a small Paul Pry sheet, was published in Wilkesbarre, in 1840, by Burdock & Boneset, and edited by Nicholas Nettle. It bore as its motto, — "Laugh when we must, be candid when we can."
" The People's Grubbing Hoe," a Harrison campaign paper, was issued in 1840, at Wilkesbarre, by A. Sisty, with the following words explanatory of its character : — " It digs up the political stumps, the squalid roots, the rotten trees, and will lend its aid in cleaning out all nuisances, encumbering the great political farm of the people." (Stewart Pearce)
June 25, 1800
WILKESBARRE, May 6
In our last, we mentioned a draught of 9290 shad being taken at Nanticoke, for miles below this town; a few days previous to that, 6963 were taken at a draught, and frequently ion the course of the season, from 1500 to 4000 at the same fishery. (Courier - Newspaper Article)
July 24, 1800
WILKESBARRE, July 1
Generals Irwine, Porter and Bonde, the commissioners appointed under the act, entitled "An act for offering compensation to the Pennsylvania claimants of certain lands within the seventeen townships of the county of Luzerne, and for other purposes therein mentioned," have arrived here, and we expect will immediately proceed on the business. (Universal Gazette - Newspaper Article)
September 3, 1800
WILKESBARRE, August 5
In our Gazette of the 1st of July, we announced the arrivals of Generals Irvine, Porter, and Bonde, commissioners appointed by the government to carry into effect the compromising act of Assembly, relative to the Pennsylvania and Connecticut claims to lands within the Seventeen Townships of Luzerne. Their secretary is John Shippen, Esq., of Shippensburgh, who arrived just as this paper was going to press.
We can now assure the public they have made considerable progress. we have reason to hope and believe these gentleman are disposed to act with all the liberality which the law authorizes. From their dispositions and exertions, as well as from the spirit of the law itself, we have a fair prospect of a happy issue to this long existing controversy. we understand the commissioners express themselves pleased and encouraged by the attention and exertion of the inhabitants of such towns as their surveyors have been engaged at, in coming forward with such cheerfulness and exhibiting drafts, corners, and lines; as well by the many instruments of submission which have been forwarded to the land office since their arrival. (Litchfield Monitor- Newspaper Article)
November 5, 1800
From the Wilkesbarre Paper
Extract of a Letter from One of the State Commissioners on Leaving this (Luzerne) County
"By communications from the land Office, (dated Sept. 25th last) the commissioners are informed that the Pennsylvania claimants have generally released, and sanguine expectations are entertained, that the whole would be released before the 2nd of this month. That being the case, it must now depend entirely on the Connecticut claimants coming forward in due time with their applications, to put an end to the controversy. The commissioners contemplate returning here early next Spring, with full confidence of completing the bussiness, -not doubting the Connecticut claimants on their part will be fully prepared to give every information necessary to facilitate the business", October 15. (Courier - Newspaper Article)
December 17, 1800
Mr. Asher Miner
Proposals are published by Mr. Asher Miner, late of this city, for publishing a weekly newspaper at Wilkesbarre, Pennsylvania, to be entitled the Luzerne County Federalist. Connecticut Gazzette (Courier - Newspaper Article)
January 28, 1801
Extract of a Letter from Gentleman of Bath in Steuben County, State of New York, to his Friend in Wilkesbarre
Our Farmers have been so successful in raising wheat, that great quantities are already to spare for the markets on the coast. - Albany and New York are the objects of the farmers and merchants in the country about Geneva and Canandarque - but those on the southern side of Ontario and Steuben, look to the southward for their market. Those who sent their wheat and flour last spring to Wright's ferry and Baltimore, neated at least twelve shillings, Pennsylvania currency, per bushel for their wheat, after paying all costs of transport; ....
The route that leaves the Susquehannah soonest, would doubtless, in many instances, have the preference.
Nature has pointed out Wilkesbarre as this spot. Whether the navigation is used from the town of Easton on the Delaware, or from the Lehigh, is of little consequence, if the intermediate road was so improved, that the carriage of a barrel of flour would not cost more than three-fourths of a dollar from the Susquehannah to the navigation of the Delaware. This would bring the carriage of a barrel of flour from this place to Philadelphia, much within two dollars. (Commercial Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
August 26, 1801
Wilkesbarre, August 10
Three of the persons, supposed to have been concerned in tarring and feathering Mr. Smilie, who was in the employment of Col. Horn, the agent under the Intrusion law, are taken and under bonds for their appearance at court.(Courier - Newspaper Article)
September 1, 1801
A letter from Ebenezer Bowman, Esq., of Wilkesbarre, that three of the riotous Connecticut men, who with blacked faces, seized Mr. Smille and his papers, at midnight, have been apprehended. The papers destroyed were 45 abandonments of the Connecticut pretension. More of the riotous party are discovered, and must fly the state or surrender tgenselves. Order, justice, and property are like to be restored in Luzerne... (American - Newspaper Article)
September 9, 1801
Court of Oyer & Terminer
At the Court of Oyer & Terminer, held at Wilkesbarre, P., on the 17th of last month, William Lathrop, of Duchess County, N. Y., was tried for rape on the person of Anna Makins. The court sentenced him to 21 years imprisonment at hard labor. (Courier - Newspaper Article)
October 20, 1801
Court of Oyer & Terminer
Wilkesbarre, Penn, August 24 - The honorable Court of Oyer and Terminer, Etc., commences their sessions in this place on Monday last. Much important business was before them. The curiosity of the public being excited, a large concourse of people attended the court as usual. His honor Judge Rush addressed the grand jury in an appropriate charge.
William Lathrop, from Duchess County (N. Y.) was arraigned of the charge of a RAPE, committed on the 18th od April last, at Tioga point; to which he pleaded not guilty....Friday morning was assigned for the prisoner to hear his sentence...:
"William Lathrop - You have been indicted and convicted of a rape, upon the person of Anna Makens, accompanied with circumstances of peculiar aggravation and horror...
It appears you are a married man with several children. You knew also the prosecutrix was a married woman, and basely took advantage of her husband's absence to perpetrate the crime...
Had your crime been committed a few years ago, an ignominious punishment under the gallows, would have been your undoubted portion where you would have died unpitied and unlamented, a just victim to injured humanity, and the laws of the country.
Such a a creature as you are, is unfit for society. An enemy to chastity and virtue you are more depraved than the savage that roams the wilderness; and in some respects worse than a murderer...
The court therfore do sentence and adjudge you undergo an imprisonment at hard labor, for the period of twenty one years; and that you be fed, clothed, and in all respects treated according to the directions of the act to reform the penal laws of this State, and that you be placed and kept five years out of the twenty one, in the solitary cells in the penitentiary house in the city of Philadelphia, and be fed on low and coarse diet, during the said five years; that you pay the costs of prosecution, etc., etc. (Political Repository - Newspaper Article)
May 15, 1802
By accounts a few days ago from Wilkesbarre, (Luzerne County) we learn, that a dreadful conflagration was spreading through an immense extent of woodland, to the west of the town. It was set on fire in a particular spot, solely with a view to facilitate their sport; but they afterwards found it impossible to restrain the flames. (Philadelphia Repository - Newspaper Article)
July 8, 1802
If thge citizens of Philadelphia, could divert their attention from the Learned Pig - the Ladies Bosoms - and Mr. Rannie's Ventriloquism, to their true interest, they would certainly exert themselves to have the contemplated road, between this place and Easton, opened. Nearly a hundred thousand bushels of grain, (principally wheat) have been boated from this town and the waters above, to Baltimore, the greatest part of which would have been carried to the Philadelphia market had this road been formed. Unless some early measures are taken to accomplish this desirable end, our traders will form connections with the merchants of Baltimore, whose interest it will be to give them advantageous terms of trade and by frequently navigating the river, they will cease to dread its dangers - it will then be found very difficult to draw the trade from its established channel. (Commercial Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
July 22, 1802
Wilkesbarre, July 17
"The God of Harvest pours abundance over the flowing fields."
We congratulate the husbandman on the cheering prospect of a plentiful harvest. Perhaps no former year has witnessed a quantity of excellent English Grain as it is now ripening for the sickle within and without the Seventeen Townships of this County. (Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
June 4, 1803
Wilkesbarre, (Penn.) May 21
Board of Commissioners, under Act of 1799
On Tuesday last Mr. Cooper arrived here and on Wednesday morning commenced the business of hearing Appeals, on which business he will sit daily till they are determined. All persons concerned in contested titles under the Connecticut claim, are desired to take notice of this. The month of May has already been apointed for this ourpose by repeated advertisements last fall.
Any persons having titles to make out, or further deeds or documents to exhibit, would do well to make early application for this purpose. (Spectator - Newspaper Article)
June 11 , 1803
Vast quantities of lumber, consisting of hewn timber, scantlings, boards, shingles, etc., now cover the shores of the Susquehanna, from Wilkesbarre (Penn.) almost to its source - water bound. Very large quantities of grain are in shore, also waiting for a fresh. (Providence Gazette - Newspaper Article)
August 15, 1803
(Patriot - Newspaper Article)
December 13, 1803
Turnpike Road to Easton
We have the pleasure to announce to the public, that the subscription for the Stock of the proposed Turnpike Road from Easton to Wilkesbarre, have increased rapidly at a meeting held here the 2nd of last month at the instance of Mr. Thomas Wright, of Wilkesbarre, one of the commissioners, and that there is the best reason to believe that in a few days the whole number of shares allotted to this place will be subscribed. - Easton Eagle of Dec. 10 (Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
April 18, 1804
Extract from the Luzerne Federalist, Printed at Wilkesbarre, ( Penn) April 14
"We hope next week to be able to give a statement of the number of rafts, arks, and boats that have descended the Susquehanna the present spring; they have exceeded by a vast difference, all former years.
On Tuesday morning the 1oth of last month arrived here from Newtown, four large beautiful new boats, the Enterprise, Minerva, Chesapeake and Harmony, under the command of Captain Skear. These boats wree each laden with 800 bushels of wheat the property of Mr. H. Goldsborough, of that place. On Wednesday the little fleet sailed for Baltimore.
Mr. Goldsborough left Newtown, with a fifth boat, the Intrepid; the evening after he sailed, four of his men attempted to remove her to a place, where they supposed she would remain secure through the night, but unfortunately the boat filled and sunk. The cargo consisted of 900 bushels of wheat. The boats we understand were insured at Baltimore.
A number of arks have been loaded with wheat, fat, cattle and fur, in the small streams that rise in the very heart of the Genessee, and have gone on to the Chesapeake."
[The above information should certainly rouse the citizens of Philadelphia to greater exertions in turning part of the increasing current of wealth to ther city, which is now so rapidly passing to Baltimore, and this may effectually be done, by completing the Turnpike Roads, from Wilkesbarre to Easton and from the Susquehanna to the Lehigh, especially since the Navigation of the latter river, from the point where the proposed road is to commence, is now proved to be practicable... (Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
May 1, 1804
Wilkesbarre, April 21
Navigation of the Susquehanna
Mr. Philip Jackson, of Kingston, has kept an account of the rafts, arks, and boats that have gone down the river this season, and has favored us with the following statement:
550 rafts, worth, on average, 150 dollars - Total 88,000 dollars
Many of the rafts were laden with wheat, pork, and other produce, to the amount, it is though, of Total 2,000 dollars
89 arks, containing on average, 1000 bushels wheat, to Total 89,000 dollars
19 boats, containing about 600 bushels wheat, or its value, Total, 11, 400
Total value 190,400 dollars.
We are of opinion that of the articles which have descended the river above this place would exceed our estimate; M. Hollenback, Esq., sent down two arks, containing 1500 bushels of wheat each; and many more of the arks contained 1200 bushels.
It is almost certain that 100,000 worth of this property would have stopt at this place, and a great proportion of it would have been transported to Easton and Philadelphia, if the turnpike road through the swamp had been open.
We hope the spirit of the people in taking shares, and their punctuality in paying for them will enable the managers to make a few miles of the road this present season. (United States' Gazette - Newspaper Article)
September 11, 1804
Fever at Wilkesbarre
A Bilious Intermittent Fever prevails at Wilkesbarre, in the county of Luzerne. Many families are under its influence. (Pennsylvania Correspondent - Newspaper Article)
October 10, 1804
Wilkesbarre, Sept. 22
Ague and Fever
The Ague and Fever now rages in this and the neighboring townships with a fury and destruction never exceeded by the Yellow Fever in Philadelphia, considering the number and situation of the inhabitants.
It is very customary for those who visit the sick to mention all the new cases of the Fever - all who lie dangerously ill - and all the deaths; this is very reprehensible, and it depresses the spirits of the patient - creates great alarm, and does no good whatever. (Courier - Newspaper Article)
October 16, 1804
Wilkesbarre, Sept. 29, 1804
We Want Doctors and Medicine
The sickness in this country has become very alarming; a great number of persons have died; six persons were buried yesterday, and a number more to be buried today: - about fifty persons are now lying sick in the town plat of Wilkesbarre. Doctor Covell is also sick. We want Doctors and Medicine. We understand it has been proposed to send an express for you; but whether this is done or not, should you received this letter, we hope you will let nothing prevent your coming here immediately: we believe it to be your interest and duty to return to this place without delay.
We are Sir, with esteem
N.B. We have no barks in the country.
(Connecticut Centinel - Newspaper Article)
January 18, 1805
Wilkes-Barre, December 23
I learn that the Connecticut claimants in Luzerne and Lycoming counties, have resolved to make another effort to bring about a compromise with the Pennsylvania claimants, and that for this purpose they have appointed the old veteran Col. John Franklin and Major Allen, of Sugar Creek, as agents to treat with the adverse party. If the landowners are as disposed to do justice, and make an honorable termimation of the dispute as the settlers, the event I am confident, will be favorable to the final settlement of the unhappy controversy. (Albany Register- Newspaper Article)
August 19, 1806
The Season - English Grain
Among the farmers of Wilksbarre, and Kingston, (Pennsylvania) a noble strife has arisen, which shall raise the most grain. In both towns are a number of farmers who have from 70 to 100 acres of English grain this season. The crops which they are now reaping are unusually fine and promise richly to reward the labor of the husbandman. (New-Hampshire Gazette- Newspaper Article)
November 12, 1806
Easton and Wilkesbarre Turnpike Road
...we are enabled to congratulate the Country on the completion of the most difficult and important part of the Easton and Wilkesbarre Turnpike road. Twenty four miles of this road, commencing at the town of Wilkesbarre and ending at the Tunkhanna river, and covering the whole of the distance which passes over the heretofore impracticable district, emphatically called "The Swamp", are finished; and as we understand from the report of the managers who have recently returned from a journey of inspection, the work is executed in a manner quite satisfactory, and such as to assure an excellent and permanent road through a wilderness which until very lately has been deemed almost impassable...
The citizens who have advanced their money as Stockholders in this very useful undertaking, will, we trust, be rewarded, by abundant tolls, for their public spirit... (Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
April 29, 1807
Wilkesbarre, Penn. April 20
An Extraordinary Flood
We have had this spring had an extraordinary flood in the Susquehannah river. The water began to rise about ten days ago, and continued increasing in height until Tuesday evening, when it attained its summitt. The water flowed into the front street of the town and filled anumber of cellars; its width opposite the town was about 400 rods. The water has not been so high since the great flood in 1784, and what is very remarkable, there had no rain fallen here for fifteen days before the commencement of the flood, that could affect the river in the least. This immense body of water therefore, must have been produced solely from the fusion of the snow, by the sun.
The rapidity of the stream - the vast and unusual quantity of water, were to us scenes new and grand, and excited ideas, pleasing and sublime.
The damage sustained by some individuals will be considerable, while others, from the rich sediment left upon their land, will be considerably benefited.(Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
April 21, 1808
Wilkesbarre [Penn.] April 15
On Monday last Jedediah Seward was committed to prison in this place, for passing a counterfeit bank note. On searching him bills were found in his possession to the amount of about four hundred dollars...(North American - Newspaper Article)
July 15, 1808
Wilkesbarre, July 1
Two prisoners have been for some time confined in the gaol in this town on criminal charges. Seward for passing counterfeit money - Dodge for stealing.
When Seward was taken, a lady was his companion. She was secured for a few days, and then, as nothing appeared against her, was liberated, and has since lived in the neighbourhood.
Seward for some time has been so ill as to require the attention of a Physician, and at all times has been treated by Mr. Stewart, who keeps the prison, and his wife with all the humanity his situation could require.
Last week the family, who reside in the prison, were two or three times alarmed for Seward, as he was taken with fainting turns, and appeared as if expiring. On Tuesday last he was so ill that Mr. Stewart left them fire and a candle to light if necessary.
About 12 o'clock at night, Dodge called in the most urgent manner for help, as Seward had fainted and was dying. - Mr. and Mrs, Stewart ran into the prison, with all possible haste, and found Seward gasping for breath, and with the utmost tenderness they endeavored to relieve him, when Dodge seized the stump of a broom, the splinters of which they had burned off for the purpose, and struck Mr. Stewart over the eyes. The dying man sprung from his bed, and the two prisoners, with the most dreadful threats ordered Mr. and Mrs. Stewart to the backside of the prison. - A smart contest ensued and Mrs. Stewart seeing a knife lying upon the floor, which appeared sharpened for the service, and hearing them threaten her husband with death, immediately seized Dodge, and with a heroism that does her the highest credit, dragged him into the street and called for help, and notwithstanding Dodge beat her in a most cruel manner, she retained her hold, constantly hollowing for asistance.
In the mean time the dying man and Mr. Stewart had struggled to the door of the prison, when some of the neighbors arrived, and the fellows were secured. On searching the prison, a saw, file and other tools were found, and two knifes sharpened, with which it is supposed they intended to further their escape if other means failed.
The spirited conduct of Mr. & Mrs. Stewart does them much credit.
On examining the habitation of the lady, who had been taken in company with Seward, she was found dressed in all the preparation for a journey - Whether means are taken to secure her I do not know, but certain it is, she ought like other heroines of Romances, to be castled a while.
It is understood that seward eloped with her, from her husband; but the good man pursuing them, Seward compromised the matter by exchanging with the tender man, and gave him a horse for his wife. - Which made the better bargain is not certainly known. That the wife has found a lover who knows how to describe his passion, as well as appreciate her worth, may be seen from the following letter from him to her, found in the prison.
Whether the first husband can write as affectionate an epistle to his horse, is a matter much questioned, and it is therefore concluded, that whatever bargain the horse may have made - the woman has done exceedingly well.
"Deare Phebe I Recv'd youre Leter Da'd the 14 of this Month which I Red with Grate Pleasure youre Soncerrity My Love Make My Confinement And Dungen a palis o My Love if you New with what Plesure it is that I Red your's I Kis it a thousan and pres the Hart to My Bosum when I think on the Deare Hand that Rote it My Love Look at My Hart with yours [here was the picture of two hearts united] My Deare Had I wings like a Dove I would Fly to that Deare Bosum of yours and there Spend the Remander of My Days Im Braceing youre Charmes - But Stop My thoughts Here I am Shut up as Lone Sum as the Chambers of Death." (New-Bedford Mercury - Newspaper Article)
July 29, 1809
Wilkesbarre, July 14
We have had rain for about a week past, almost constantly, which has raised the Susquehannah river to an unusual height for the season this year. The water we believe, has been about sixteen feet above low water mark. The immense loss that will be sustained by the farmers who have land adjoining the river will be incalculable. Wheat, Rye, Oats, Corn and Grass, will be entirely destroyed; which will render the situation of our farmers truly distressing. A flood in July has not been known before, for more than twenty years. The ruin and distress that will be occasioned by it, from the source, to the mouth of the river, will be beyond all calculation. (Independent American - Newspaper Article)
September 14, 1909
Wilkesbarre, (Penn.) September 8, 1809
On Sunday morning last, Mr. Joseph Johnson, and four other persons were crossing the Susquehanna at the Falls, about a mile above the Borough, in a boat laden with brick - when near the opposite shore of the river, the boat sunk, and Mr. Johnson was unfortunately drowned. - The other persons reached the shore in safety. Mr. Johnson has left a wife and two small children to lament their irreparable loss. (Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
December 24, 1810
Calico and Paper Printing Invention
Leonard Beatty, of Wilkesbarre, Penn. is said to have invented a machine for Calico and Paper Printing which will stamp at the rate of 200 pieces of paper hangings in nine hours. (True American - Newspaper Article)
January 24, 1812
The present Quarter has this week commenced; and the Managers of the Academy would inform the public that the usual course of Study is pursued-viz. History, Composition, the Latin and Greek Languages, Rhetoric, Logic, Mathematics, including Natural Philosophy, are taught by Garrick Mallery, the former Principal of the Academy.
Geography, English, Grammar, Penmanship, Book-Keeping, Arithmetic, Reading, ad Spelling, are taught by Thonas Bartlet, and Andrew Beaumont.
The Trustees & Managers of the Academy assure the public that all possible attention shall be paid both to the instruction and morals of the Youth committed to their charge. (Gleaner - Newspaper Article)
February 24, 1812
Wilkesbarre, (Penn.) April 10
The Wyoming Experiment
This afternoon, at half past three o'clock, the vessel built in this port, was launched into the Susquehanna, amid the shouts of the people, and the firing of cannon. The concourse of people was great - the launch in every respect beautiful - and no accident to mar the pleasure. The vessel is now floating, and the cannon are yet firing - thus has so far prospered. (Yankee - Newspaper Article)
April 24, 1812
Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County, (Penn.) April 17
Last Friday was the day on which the Launch of the vessel on the stocks in this Port was announced. A scene so extraordinary, two hundred miles from the tide waters of the river, raised the curiosity of everyone...The novelty to those who had never witnessed such a view, excited their curiosity to the highest degree. The importance of the experiment too did not fail to augment the general solicitude, for on its success depended the important consideration, whether the timber of our mountains could be profitably employed in ship building, and our country be benefitted by the increase of business which such a pursuit would naturally produce.
...Early on Friday people began to gather from all parts of the country. The common on the bank, at noon gave notice that every thing was in preparation. A little after two, repeated discharges announced that all was ready. ...A little after three the increased bustle and noise around the vessel, and the sound of the sledges and axes gave the interesting notice that they were knocking away the blocks.
The vessel was built on the bank of the river, 100 feet from the water, and 15 feet perpendicular height above it, so that she had a considerable distance to move. She measures between 50 and 60 tons. Her colours were flying from her stern, and near thirty persons were on board. The after block was knocked away - every eye was fixed- all was anxiety - but she did not move. The news of the Embargo had just come into town, and he seemed aware that there was no business for her on the ocean, and she might as well lie in dry dock. The men on board all gathered near her bow and then run in a body to the stern. - She started- moving for half a minute slowly - the velocity increased, and she slid most gracefully into her destined element, amid the shouts of thousands. As she met the water, Capt. Chapman, christened her in the usual style, "The Luzerne, of Wilkes-Barre." - Nothing could be more beautiful - every spectator was amply gratified.
Great credit is due to Mr. Mack, the shipright who built her, and under whose superintendance she was launched, and to Mr. Arndt the principal proprietor, who has been chiefly active in her building.
We hope her voyage down the crooked and rocky Susquehanna may be safe, though our hopes are not without some fears for her safety as she draws without ballast four feet water. (New-York Gazette - Newspaper Article)
March 30, 1813
Wilksbarre, March 12
On the night of Wednesday the 10th of last month between 10 & 11 o'clock, the Printing Office of the Gleaner, together with the greater part of the materials, were consumed by fire. It had made such progress before discovered, that all attempts at saving the building proved ineffectual - nor would but few of the printing materials be rescued from destruction. In consequence of which the publication of the Gleaner must be suspended for a time. Mr. Miner's loss is very heavy, but a generous public will not be backward in affording aid to an industrious man, by making him some remuneration. (Broome County Patriot- Newspaper Article)
April 14, 1813
Northumberland, (Penn.) April 6
On Thursday last there arrived at this place a sloop from Wilkesbarre called the "LUZERNE". She has been navigated down the Susquehanna, thus far, on her way to Baltimore, without either mast or helm, by the assistance of platforms attached to her bows and steered. - The sloop measures 61 tons, and in the trim in which she now is, draws only four feet of water. In the year 1792, the first ship descended the Mississippi - several descend it now annually. Should the Luzerne get safe to Baltimore, as we hope she may, it might shortly become no unusual thing to see vessels of 100 tons or upwards, descend our river.
(Poulson's American Daily Advertiser - Newspaper Article)
September 6, 1813
Wilkes-Barre, Nov. 7, 1813
Hospital for Drunken Persons
The Hospital erected in this County for drunken persons, is producing the most salutary effects. Every man found in a state of intoxication is taken there and confined. Those who have been long in the habit of drinking, are allowed a little every day, but the quantity is gradually diminished, and plenty of milk and beer situated in its place, and it is very pleasant to see the change in the health of the patients - Many have been discharged perfectly cured, who bless the day that the institution was ever established. (Farmer's Cabinet - Newspaper Article)
September 21, 1813
Wilkes-Barre (Penn.) September 10
On Thursday morning, Mr. Allen Jack, merchant of this place, was walking on the scaffold around the second story of a new store he was building, when unfortunately he trod on the end of a board not properly secured - the board gave way and precipitated him head long to the ground. He was taken up senseless and every aid in the power of the faculty afforded to restore him, but in vain. He expired at 12 o'clock the same night, aged 37 years.
He was a native of Ireland and for some years made Baltimore his residence. In 1806 he established himself in business in this town, where his uprightness, benevolence and industry acquired for him an honorable name and an accumulating fortune. Mr. Jack has left no relative here, but the sigh of pity and the moan of sorrow will not be suppressed. He goes not down to the grave unhonored and unwept - but the tear of sensibility shall bedew his grave, and the sincere grief of hundreds mark their respect for the stranger living, and their sorrow for his untimely fate. Green be the grass that grows upon his grave and light the turf that rests upon his bosom.
On Monday last, John BAILY, of this town, was blowing rocks at the falls of the Lehigh. Imprudently he attempted to blow a match which was slow to go off. In the daring act the powder caught, and blew him up, tearing him most shockingly. He exclaimed, "God have mercy on my soul!" and died.
(Rhode-Island American - Newspaper Article)
(Rhode-Island American - Newspaper Article)