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Licking County
History & Genealogy

Centennial History of Licking County, Ohio
by Isaac Smucker
Publ. Newark, Ohio: Clark & Underwood, Book and Job Printers




[Pg. 72]

     I have already given brief sketches of some of our Pioneers, or those who acted prominent parts in this County during the first half of our country's Centennial period.  It may not be amiss also to give the names of some of those who commenced their career here during the first half and finished it during the last half of the Century.  Conspicuous among this class were Captain Bradley Buckingham, David Moore, Isaac Stadden, Colonel Robert Davidson, Rees Darlinton, Benjamin Briggs, Major John Stewart, Colonel W. W> Gault, John Cunningham, Esq., Stephen McDougal, Sereno Wright, Major Elisha Warren, Judge Bancroft, William Hull, John Van Buskirk, Captain Samuel Elliott, William Gavitt, Captain Willard Warner, James Gillespie, James Holmes, Colonel William Spencer, Richard Lamson, Peter Schmucker, Amos H. Caffee, and many others.
[Pg. 73]
     To give a measure of completeness to this Centennial History of Licking County, I beg leave also to bring to notice some of the gentlemen who have most conspicuously identified themselves with our County during the latter half only of the Centennial period now closing.  Prominent among the list given under this head are Johathan Taylor, Joshua Mathiot, and Daniel Duncan, who were all elected to Congress, as well as to other positions of honor and responsibility.  Another trio of this class consisted of Israel Dille, Dr. J. N. Wilson, and Lucius Case, all men of intelligence, extensive information and talents who were largely influential in giving directions to public sentiment.  They were original thinkers, zealous investigators, enthusiastic students.  The two first named pushed their investigations in the direction of Philosophy and the Natural Sciences, with diligence and a good degree of success. The tastes of the latter led him to the study of Jurisprudence and Political Economy; hence he became prominent as a lawyer, and as an active and influential debater in the Constitutional Convention of 1851-52. Conspicuous also among our latter-half-century-men was he who was familiarly called Sam. White. He was an influential Legislator for a time, and moreover attained to the highest reputation among us as a popular Orator, and an unfaltering Friend of Freedom! Colonel B. B. Taylor too, for a brief space as Senator and political Orator, filled a large space in the public eye. James Parker and James R. Stanbery, also obtained distinction as public speakers, not only at the bar and before political assemblies, but also as grave and dignified Senators. Among others of our modern Legislators were Samuel D. King, George H. Flood, P. N. O'Banon, Daniel Duncan, W. B. Woods, Charles Follett, Willard Warner, Dr. Walter B. Morris, R. B. Truman, George B. Smythe, John F. Follett, C. B. Giffin, William Parr, William Bell, J. B. Jones, J. W. Owens, W. D. Smith, and others, who exerted a degree of influence, as members of our State Legislature.
     Among those of our citizens other than Legislators who have "done the State some service," and acquired honorable distinction in other departments of the public service, or in the line of their own chosen pursuits, are Presidents Pratt, Going, Bailey, Hall and Talbott, of Denison University; Judges Searle, Buckingham, Brumback and Follett; W. D. Morgan, T. J. Davis, M. M. Munson, L. B. Wing, A. B. Clark, Dr. J. R. Black, T. J. Anderson, Colonel William Spencer, William P. Kerr, J. W. Webb, C. H. Kibler, Rev. Ebenezer Buckingham, Rev. Alexander Duncan, Dr. Edward Stanbery, Rev. H. M. Hervey, Rev. Isaac N. Walters, Dr. Daniel Marble, and many others
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that might be named, including the still living former residents of Licking County, Samuel Park, Esq., of Illinois, a voluminous and widely-known writer on various subjects; Dr. Z. C. McElroy, of Zanesville, a strong, vigorous, original thinker, and an extensive contributor to the best Medical Journals of Europe and America; and Dr. T. B. Hood, of Washington City, who made an honorable, widely-extended, and well-known reputation for himself while in the service of the Medical Department during the late rebellion, as well as since the close of the war, as an author, in the performance of his duties in the Surgeon General's Department of the Government.
     And I also avail myself of this occasion to make mention of other gentlemen who were natives of Licking County, or residents of it in early life, that attained to a good degree of distinction in other sections of our country, both in military and civil life. And first of those whose military services brought them prominently before the country I name General Samuel R. Curtis, General William S. Rosecrans, General Charles Griffin, General B. W. Brice, General W. D. Hamilton, General Charles R. Woods, General Willard Warner, and General William B. Woods. Of eminent Civilians those whose names occur to me at this moment, were Horatio J. Harris, a Senator in Indiana, and a United States District Attorney in Mississippi; Ed. Roye, who attained to the position of President of the Republic of Liberia; James F. Wilson, long a distinguished member of Congress from Iowa; James B. Howell, a United States Senator from Iowa; General Willard Warner, a member of the United States Senate from Alabama; Hon. William B. Woods, a Judge of the Federal Courts in Louisiana and other Southern States; and George H. Flood, American Minister to the Republic of Texas: "Johnny Clem," a favorite Orderly of General Thomas and now an officer in the Regular Army, also acquired a National reputation as the youngest and smallest soldier in the Union Army, as well as for gallant con-duct. Colonel W. H. Hollister, too has acquired wide-spread fame as one of the largest of American landowners and stock-raisers. He is a native of Licking County, now a citizen of California. Thomas Jones, the Sculptor, and Rev. Dr. Rosecrans, the popular Roman Catholic Bishop, are also entitled to mention in this connection, the latter being a native, and the former a resident in early life, of Licking County. Mr. Jones has been a resident of Cincinnati, for many years, and has a National reputation. Bishop Rosencrans is now an honored citizen of Columbus, enjoying the confidence of the entire community.

[Pg. 75]


     It will be impracticable to do little more than to give the names of the Newspapers that have been published in Licking County.  The first attempt to publish a Newspaper among us was made by Benjamin Briggs, who, in 1820, established the ADVOCATE, which being still published has had a continuous existence for fifty-six years.  The second paper published was called the WANDERER.  It was started in Granville in 1822, by Sereno Wright.  It died in a year or two.  The NEWARK GAZETTE, established in Newark in 1827, by Rufus Henry and Dr. Daniel Marble, was the third paper started in Licking County.  The GAZETTE, under a variety of names has had a continuous existence of nearly half a century, and now appears as the NEWARK WEEKLY AMERICAN, Clark & Underwood being the proprietors, publishers and editors.
     The NEWARK BANNER is a new paper issued in Newark, once a week, by Milton R. Scott.  It is devoted to Temperance, local interests, also to general and home news.  The DENISON COLLEGIAN is a semi-monthly collegiate publication, issued in Granville, conducted by a committee of Students of Denison University.  The subscribers to the various weekly papers and to the DENISON COLLEGIAN, would probably aggregate about six thousand.  That the newspaper and periodical press of the country is an extensive and potent educator, for good or evil, and that it has been, and is now, largely influential in forming, leading and directing public opinion on the various subjects that claim attention, and on all questions that come up for discussion, does not admit of a doubt.  It was the repeated remark of Benjamin Briggs, the "Nestor of the Licking County Press," as he was frequently styled, that the Newspaper literature of the country at large was the cheapest and meanest literature extent.  Whether that opinion was correct or not of newspaper literature, generally, I do not assume to decide, but that the newspaper and periodical press ahs been and continues to be a power, under our free institutions, does not admit of a doubt, and therefore begin thus potential "for weal or woe," it becomes a matter of great importance that an engine of such overwhelming power be operated in the interests of patriotism, of Truth, of Virtue and Morality.
     I have given the titles of only the Newspapers now being published in our County, but as many others have existed that are now "no more," the history of the Newspaper press of Licking County, would be incomplete without a brief mention at least of the
[Pg. 76]
others that played their brief part on the stage and then "went out."  I present the titles they bore, as near as I can from memory, and in the order of their publication.

     The CONSTITUTIONALIST was started in 1837.  In 1843 its name was changed to the LICKING HERALD, and is 1856 it took the name of the NEWARK TIMES, which it retained until 1859, when it died.  The HARRISONIAN was published as a campaign paper in 1840; so also was the DEMOCRTIC RASP.  In 1842 the LABORER was started but having but little support it soon "went under."  The ORIENTAL EVANIC had a short-lived career in 1845; so also had the SPY, published a few years later.
     The GRANVILLE INTELLIGENCER followed next, in 1847, and it was afterwards called the LICKING BEE.  In 1857 the DENISONIAN was started by the College boys in Granville; and was soon followed by the HERBARIUM, which was edited by the young ladies of hate Kerr Seminary.  The four last named were published in Granville.  Next came the VOICE OF THE PEOPLE in 1860, followed by the TRUE DEMOCRAT in 1862, and by the LICKING RECORD in 1863.  In 1866 came the REVEILLE and WOOL-GROWER.  The SOWER, also the MONTHLY VOICE, two Swedenborgian papers had each a short life.  The COLLEGIAN, was started in 1867 and in 1869 took the name of DENISON COLLEGIAN.  PAPERS BY THE WAY died long ago and so also did all the Daily's that were ever attempted in Newark.


     Another incident or fact in our County's history, I propose to record, and it affords me great gratification to do so.
     It entered into the liberal mind of Mr. Lucius Humphrey, one of our most philanthropic citizens, to signalize one of the closing years of our Centennial period, (and which also proved to be one of the closing years of his own life.
[Pg. 77]
as practicable, make sale of it and then proceed to give effect to the noble purpose of the Friend of the Friendless, who, though dead, will yet speak, and more than speak, in behalf of the widow, the orphan, and "those who have no helper."


Let me say in conclusion that I have thus endeavored to present you an opportunity to take a sort of a "birds-eye view" of Licking County, from the beginning of this Centennial period, and through each and all of the passing years thereof, down to the present time - even down to this anniversary of American Independence, which to-day closes the first century of our Country's Freedom.  It would be a work of supererogation to hold up to view before you the PRESENT in sharp contrast with the condition of things existing during any one of the decades of the past century.  If I have not failed in my purpose that contrast has been present before you, throughout the entire time I have occupied in giving you the facts, incidents and events contained in this Centennial History of our County.  Suffice it only to say that at the beginning of the Century, that is, in 1776, the territory that now constitutes Licking County was a "waste" howling wilderness" - no white man then lived or ever had lived here - our County, for more than a quarter of a Century, yea for the entire period thereafter, of a full generation, had no existence as a civil organization - what Licking County is now, at the termination of this Centennial year, in all its varied interests, I have attempted to tell you.
     Seventy-eight years have transpired since the first white settlement was made within the present territorial limits of Licking County, and but one man remains with us who was himself personally connected with that event - who was "part and parcel" of the Hughes and Ratliff colony of twenty-one persons that squatted on the "Bowling Green," in the Spring of 1798.  He was born in Harrison County, Virginia, in 1796, and has therefore attained to the mature years of an octogenarian.  In 1798, our now aged Pioneer, then two years old, was placed in one end of a salt sack, a hole being cut into it and admit him, his head protruding through it, and his brother being similarly placed in the other end of the sack, which was then thrown across a horse with a pack-saddle upon it.  Thus were two of Captain Elias Hughes' thirteen children brought to the Bowling Green, only one of whom, (Jonathan,) survives his life
[Pg. 78]
running through and covering the entire period of the occupancy by the white race, of the territory now constituting the County of Licking!  I deem it appropriate to close the Centennial History with this allusion to the salt-sack boy of 1798, and the now venerable octogenarian Pioneer veteran of this Centennial occasion, COLONEL JONATHAN HUGHES, who happily is with us today in full health and vigor!


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