(Newspapers of Pennsylvania)

Adams County

County Newspapers
1800-1829 Articles

Adams County, Pennsylvania in 1826

1800-29   |   1830-49   |   1850-99

Cnt Sep 26 '10  |  Cnt Dec 02 '18  |  Cnt Jul 17 '22  |  Rcp May 07 '23
Cnt May 21 '23  |  Rcp Jun 04 '23  |  Rcp Sep 03 '23  |  Cnt Apr 07 '24
Cnt Sep 22 '24  |  Cnt Feb 02 '25  |  Rcp May 18 '25  |  Cnt Oct 05 '25
Snt Aug 30 '26

Misc. PA papers:   1810-19   |   1820-39   |   1840-42   |   1840-49   |   1850-99   |   1900-99


Vol. VI.                                    Gettysburg, September 26, 1810.                                    No. 18.

Cincinnati, Aug. 28.

It is evident this Western Country was, in former ages, very populous; witness the number of artificial mounds and old fortifications that abound in most every part of the state; and although we are left to form conjectures respecting the former inhabitants of this country, yet we may reasonably conclude, from the vestiges of works yet to be seen, they must have been very numerous, and from the bones that have been dug up from time to time; (as a proof in point) -- A few days ago, as the workmen were digging a cellar, near Halley's mill, Little Miami, 18 feet by 24, at the depth of 18 inches & 3 feet, they dug up no less than 26 human skeletons, one of which appeared to have been a chief, as he was laid upon large flat stones, one of which was placed at the head; on the right side of his head there was found an earthen cup, in a complete state of preservation. -- Upon examining the cup (which was filled with earth) nothing was found, as was fondly anticipated. The cup is in the possession of Mr. John Campbell. Perhaps some of your subscribers may have met with something of the kind, which might lead us to some knowledge of the people, as it may be the practice of some Indians to place a cup on the right side of their departed chiefs to this day, as I have no doubt it was the general practice at that time. -- The bones were much decayed, and appear to have been deposited there at different times. They were placed in different directions. A considerable quantity of ashes was also intermixed with the bones.

Note: The "Mr. John Campbell" mentioned above was probably the Reverend Dr. John P. Campbell, an early student of American antiquities. See Campbell's "Of the Aborigines of the Western Country," as reprinted in the July 18, 1816 issue of the Canton Ohio Respository. See also Campbell's original prospectus for this work, published in the Chillicothe Weekly Recorder of July 5, 1814.


Vol. III.                                    Gettysburg, December 2, 1818.                                    No. 4.


Extract of a letter from a young lady in Amherst, N. H. to her brother in Patterson, N. J. dated Oct. 31.

"A mineral spring has lately been discovered in Milford, in a very singular manner. A young man, son of Mr. Sergeant, had been sick for some time; a short time before his death, he dreamed that a man came to him, and stood on a rock in a field not far from his father's house, and told him, that near that place was a spring, the water of which would cure consumption. -- He dreamed it a second and a third time, within a week. He was very anxious indeed to have them dig and find it, and wished to go and shew them where it was; they carried him on a bier into the field, and he informed them where the man stood in his dream. They dug and found a spring of very singular looking water; (I have seen some of it) it resembles clay-pit water, but will never settle or strain clear. -- This the young man thought was not the right spring, and wished them to dig further; he said the man told him a flat stone would lie over the spring. The young man died, and the last word he said was dig! Since his death, a man has been there from Massachusetts, who could use a mineral rod; they dug 12 feet into the earth, and came to the flat stone; they drew it off with oxen, and under it was the spring; the water is clear, and the people can drink a much greater quantity of it than of other water: on some it operates as an emetic, on others differently. We do not know yet what the effect will be to invalids. It has excited great curiosity here, and people are coming from all quarters to drink the water and carry it away with then. They have come forty of fifty miles already. You may depend, that this is all true."   N. Y. E. P.

Note: Milford is located in Hillsboro Co., New Hampshire, about sixty miles southeast of Lebanon, Grafton Co., where the Joseph Smith, Sr. family lived in 1812-1814. By the time mineral rods were being used to locate the miraculous spring at Milford, the Smiths had been gone from the area for nearly a year. Still, the miraculous spring story demonstrates that the Smiths came to New York from a region in New England where thrice-repeated prophetic dreams, treasures hidden in the ground awaiting human discovery, and magical instruments of discovery, like divining rods, were part of the local culture. Since large numbers of New England Yankees, of the lower class, were then emigrating to western New York, it is probable that families like the Smiths maintained sufficient contact with their homeland to stay current with whatever marvelous events were then occurring in New England.


Vol. VI.                                    Gettysburg, July 17, 1822.                                    No. 36.

From the Savannah Georgian.


It is said that the ruins of an extensive city, covered for ages with herbage and underwood, has discovered a few years since in Gautimala. -- It has since been surveyed by a learned Spaniard, and drawings made of its curiosities, which have been sent to London and will soon be presented to the world.

Note: The the Batavia, New York Republican Advocate of July 5, 1822 for more information on this antiquities discovery.


The  Republican  Compiler.
Vol. V.                                    Gettysburg, May 7, 1823.                                    No. 35.

                                                        Detroit, March 7.

Last week a manuscript volume of between 3 and 4 hundred pages, was discovered by Col. Edwards of this town, under one of his buildings. The book is in a tolerable state of preservation, and is one of the finest specimens of Penmanship that we have ever seen, It has travelled the round of the literary circle of this place for the last four or five days, and it still remains a mystery! The characters in which it is written are unknown; they are neither Hebrew, Greek, nor Saxon, and the only parts of it hitherto intelligible, are a few Latin quotations. It is now deposited in this office, and those who are curious in these matters are invited to examine it. -- Gaz.

The Detroit Manuscript. -- The Detroit Gazette says, the singular volume recently discovered by Col. Edwards, has been compared with more than thirty different alphabets, ancient and modern, and although the characters in which it is written bear a slight affinity to several of them, it is very clear that they belong to neither. -- They bear more resemblance to the Phoenician Alphabet than any other with which they have been compared, though a number of the letters differ but little from the Saxon. -- There is no doubt, from the Latin sentences interspersed through it, that it is a religious work and it is probably the production of some learned theologian of the seventeenth century, written in a peculiar cipher.

Note: (forthcoming)


The  Republican  Compiler.
Vol. V.                                    Gettysburg, May 14, 1823.                                    No. 36.


To the Editor of the Washington Republican

Sir -- As some notice has occasionally been taken of the manuscript volume found at Detroit, and much curiosity expressed on the subject, the following circumstances may not be unacceptable to those who feel an interest in it:

Not long since, a leaf, containing four pages of this book, was enclosed to Major General Macomb, chief engineer, by Colonel Edwards, of Detroit, with a request, that it might be sent, with the letter that accompanied it, to Dr. Samuel L. Mitchill, at New York. Previously to doing so it was submitted to the examination of the professors of the college in Georgetown; as these gentlemen are versed in Ecclesiastical, as well as in most other branches of literary science, little difficulty was had in determining both the character of the book and the language in which it is written. The following letter from Mr. Grace affords this information:

From the limited specimen furnished, a just opinion of the contents of the whole volume cannot be formed. It may however, be inferred, that it is chiefly, if not altogether, on Ecclesiastical subjects, and is, probably, the production of a Jesuit missionary, concerned in the exploring of that section of the country, and therefore, other matters, connected with its history, may be contained in it. To ascertain this, Colonel Edwards has been requested to forward the book, through him, that a translation may be made, of so much, at least, as will discover any importance that may attach to it.

I am, Sir, your obedient servant,
                                      J. ROBERDEAU,
                                      Engineer Department, April 22, 1823,

                                                       Georgetown College, April 10, 1823.
SIR -- I send you the manuscript, which you left me to examine, and which, with a few exceptions, is written in Irish, truly classical. There are some faults in the orthography, which, together with some strange abbreviations, made it somewhat difficult to unravel. Page 179 begins thus:

The fourteenth chapter, in which are given ten reasons, why the Catholic church does not administer the cup to the laity.

The same page contains four of these reasons, and a part of the fifth. The remainder of the manuscript, viz: pages 175, 176 and 178, contains quite a different subject; it is all on penance and confession. I should wish to see a perfect copy of this Hibernian manuscript, and a translation of the whole can be had, at any time, from
                                     Your humble and devoted servant,
                                                  WILLIAM GRACE.
      To Major Roberdeau.

Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. VII.                                    Gettysburg, May 21, 1823.                                    No. 28.


The Manuscript book which so puzzled the literati of Detroit, turns out to be a theological work in Irish. A sheet containing several pages, inclosed to Washington City, for the purpose of being forwarded to Dr. Mitchell, at New York, was shown to one of the professors in Columbia College, at Georgetown, who translated it. He says, it is a disquisition upon points of Roman Catholic faith in pure and elevated Irish.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Republican  Compiler.
Vol. V.                                    Gettysburg, June 4, 1823.                                    No. 39.


==> The Rev. J. S. C. F. Frey, a converted Jew, and an agent of the Society for meliorating the condition of the Jews, expects to preach in this place on Monday or Tuesday next, when a collection will be taken to aid the Society.

Note: (forthcoming)


The  Republican  Compiler.
Vol. V.                                    Gettysburg, Sept. 3, 1823.                                    No. 52.


A monthly periodical publication, which has been forthcoming for some time past, has just made its appearance. It is edited by Mr. Alexander Campbell, of Brooke county, Va. It is a neat pamphlet, and contains a large portion of original matter of a good quality, either as it respects justness of sentiment or neatness of composition. From the tenor of this number, it would seem that the paper is calculated to subserve the cause of Virtue and True Religion, by the castigation of vice and hypocrisy. -- The well known abilities of the editor afford an earnest that he will be adequate to sustain his part of the undertaking.   Wooster Spectator.

Note: (forthcoming)


Vol. VIII.                                    Gettysburg, April 7, 1824.                                    No. 22.


The Boston Telegraph informs us, that the Missionary Establishment among the Seneca Indians in N. Y. had been broken up by the machinations of some individuals inimical to religion.

Note: The details of this event are rather more complex than the Boston Telegraph's telling of the story. The suppression of Christian missionary efforts among the Seneca of western New York came at the behest of Governor De Witt Clinton, acting upon the solicitation of Red Jacket, the primary Seneca leader in that region. The cessation of missionary work among those Indians proved to be only a temporary thing, as members of Red Jacket's own family were Christianized and the religious party among the Seneca took effective control of matters a couple of years later. See the Mar. 13, 1823 issue of the Canton Ohio Repository for the context of this story, as well as reports in the Apr. 17, 1828 and the June 11, 1828 of the Georgia Cherokee Phoenix for information on subsequent developments.


Vol. VIII.                                    Gettysburg, September 22, 1824.                                    No. 46.

From the Broome N. Y. Republican

Trial for murder. -- At the Court of Oyer and Terminer held at Montrose, Pa. last week, by the Hon. Edward Herrick, Jason Tread well was tried on an indictment for the murder of Oliver Harper, in May last. The trial commenced on Wednesday morning, and was very ably conducted by Messrs. Eldred, Mallory and Read, on the part of the Commonwealth, and Messrs. Case and Williston for the prisoner. After argument of counsel, and a clear and lucid charge, the case was submitted to the jury on Saturday evening. On Sunday morning; the jury returned a verdict of Guilty.

The testimony, although principally circumstantial, was clear and pointed irresistibly establishing the prisoner's guilt, and exhibiting in him a depravity of heart, seldom evinced in cases of equal magnitude. Treadwell, no doubt, had meditated the murder of Harper for several days previous to carrying his design into execution. He had ascertained, as near as possible, the time Harper would return from Philadelphia, to which place Mr. H. had been with lumber. Having blacked and disguised himself, he lay in wait nearly two days in an unfrequented tract of woods adjoining the road Mr. Harper would necessarily travel, a few miles distant from his residence. It does not appear that Mr. Harper was in any way apprised of the approach of the murderer. He was shot through the head and instantly expired. Treadwell then rifled his pockets of about $400, and fled to the woods. On the day the murder was committed he was seen with his rifle by a Mr. Welton, blacked and secreted by the way, near the spot where Mr. Harper was found. He was subsequently recognized by Mr. Welton. -- This, with other circumstances, led to his detection, and finally to his conviction. Early on Monday morning last, sentence of death was passed upon him. He appeared quite unconcerned. During; the whole trial, and on the Judge's pronouncing the awful sentence of the law, he remained, unmoved, as if unconscious of his fearful situation, or the deep depravity of the crime he had committed. The time of execution is, by the laws of that state, to be fixed by the Governor.

The following is the charge

You have been indicted, and after a full hearing in which you have been assisted by able counsel, have been found guilty, by a jury of your country, of the most wicked and atrocious crime that man can commit against his fellow man. That there was abundant evidence for that conviction, none that witnessed the trial can entertain a doubt. In that nefarious act, there was not a solitary circumstance to alleviate your guilt. The deceased was not your enemy; he had not injured you; betwixt him and you, there had never existed ill blood, and from aught that appeared he was your friend. He had a large and interesting family; to whom he was returning with the avails of his industry; anticipating no doubt, the fond moment that should bring him to their embrace, whilst you were lying in wait in the forest to rob him, and in cold blood you murdered him. In an instant you cut him off from all his hopes, his family and endearments, and sent him prematurely to the grave. There was a time, perhaps, when the thought of perpetrating so horrid a crime, would almost congealed your blood. You commenced your career, probably, with palliating in your own mind the commission of small offences, and progressively familiarizing yourself with these dangerous subjects, until they appeared to lose their wicked character in the intimacy and habit; for few men have ever been so depraved as to commence with crimes of the deepest die. The history of the wicked has generally found their criminality to have originated in Sabbath-breaking, tippling, gambling, indolence and mischief, and proceeding through the various gradations, until it has left them in the same deplorable condition that you now are. A mind so deeply imbued with guilt, can draw but little consolation from a life marked with crime, Can you reflect upon the first impulse of your own mind, or the suggestions of the evil one that hurried you away; or on the shocking catastrophe itself, without chilling emotions? If there is nothing in the past to console you; can your mind fix on anything in the future, to cheer your melancholy way? As the greatest act of kindness that can be done you, let me impress you with the reality of your condition -- for the days of delusion are now past with you, and the days of a dreadful reality have commenced. Are you prepared to look forward to that sad spectacle, which must finish your course? And if you be, are you prepared to go through the dark valley and shadow of death, and meet on the shores of eternity, the spirit of him you murdered? And above all, are you prepared to accompany his accusations before that tribunal, which has declared, that although he is a "God of he will in no wise spare the guilty," Standing upon so awful a precipice, be entreated by all the solemnity of your situation by all that's heaven, and by all that's hell, to seek the Lord whilst he may be found. Go, in the agonies of sorrow for your iniquity, with your bloodstained hands lay hold on the cross and cry for mercy; for though your sins be as scarlet, he can make them as snow. And for your encouragement remember, that the expiring thief on the cross, who in the contrition and sincerity of his heart cried -- "Lord, when thou comest into thy kingdom remember me," received the merciful answer, which you may also receive, "This day thou shalt be with me in Paradise."

You must now listen to the sentence of the law, which is the consequence of your crime:

That you be taken back to the jail, from whence you came; thence to the place of execution, where you be hung by your neck until your body be dead.

And may the Lord have mercy on your soul.

Note 1: Far shorter versions of this sentencing report were published in the Sept. 1, 1824 issue of the Geneseo, NY Livingston Register and the Jan. 7, 1825 issue of the Canton Ohio Repository.

Note 2: Dan Vogel, in the Chronology Appendex for the 5th volume of his Early Mormon Documents, dates Joseph Smith, Jr.'s first appearance in the Colesville-Harmony area to mid-October, 1825. If this assumption is correct, Smith had no involvement with Oliver Harper's Susquehannah money-diggers until after Harper's murder. Other sources, however, indicate that Joseph Smith, Sr. and Joseph Smith, Jr. had visited the Susquehannah area earlier, as timber-cutters. See Nov. 1, 1825 "Articles of Agreement" for documentation of the Smith's connection with Harper's money-diggers.


Vol. IX.                                    Gettysburg, February 2, 1825.                                    No. 13.

From the Windsor (Vt.) Journal, Jan. 17

Money Digging. -- We are sorry to observe, even in this enlightened age, so prevalent a disposition to credit the accounts of the Marvellous. Even the frightful stories of money being hid under the surface of the earth, and enchanted by the Devil or Robert Kidd, are received by many of our respectable fellow citizens as truths. We had hoped that such a shameful undertaking would never have been acted over our country, till the following event occurred, not long ago in out vicinity.

A respectable gentleman in Tunbridge, was informed by means of a dream, that a chest of money was buried on a small island in Ayer's brook, at Randolph. No sooner was he in possession of this valuable information, than he started off to enrich himself with the treasure. After having been directed by the mineral rod where to search for the money, he excavated the earth about 15 feet square to the depth of 7 or 8; and all the while it was necessary to keep his pumps working to keep out the water. Presently he and his laborers came Pat upon a chest of gold,
  And heard it chink with pleasure,
Then all prepared, just taking hold,
  To raise the shining treasure.
One of the company drove an old file through the rotten lid of the chest, and perceiving it to be nearly empty, exclaimed with an oath, "There's not ten dollars a piece." No sooner were the words out of his mouth, than the chest moved off through the mud, and has not been seen or heard of since.

Such is the story as related by himself. Whether he actually saw the chest, or whether it was the vision of a disturbed brain, we shall leave the public to determine.

Notes: (forthcoming)


The  Republican  Compiler.
Vol. VII.                                    Gettysburg, May 18, 1825.                                    No. 36.


American Jews' Society. -- We are authorized to state, (says the New York Observer,) that the Board of Managers of the American Society for meliorating the condition of the Jews, have purchased a tract of land embracing 409 acres, in Westchester county, about three miles from Sawpit labding, bordering on Connecticut, where a settlement of the Hewish converts will immediately be formed.

Note: (forthcoming)


Vol. IX.                                    Gettysburg, October 5, 1825.                                    No. 48.

The New City of Refuge.

Buffalo Patriot Extra, September 15, 1825.

(view orginal article from Buffalo paper)


Notes: (forthcoming)


Vol. X.                                    Gettysburg, August 30, 1826.                                    No. 48.

From the Troy Sentinel.

Vermont Gold. -- A beautiful piece of native gold, weighing nearly ten ounces, was lately found in the town of Newfane, Vermont. It was picked up by a boy near a small brook, and was studded with crystals of quartz. We have been favored by Mr. French, of this city, with the perusal of a letter from a friend in that place, from which we extract the following particulars: "A mass of native gold, weighing nearly ten ounces, has been found in this village, upon the farm of Samuel Ingram. In its general appearance it strikingly resembles the North Carolina Gold -- specific gravity 16.5 -- considered worth 89 cents per pennyweight. It was found in the bank of a stream which empties into the branch opposite this village." We have seen another letter, which says that the inhabitants of the village "are about turning out on a grand search for more of the precious metal, and every witch-hazel thereabouts has been subsidized for a mineral rod." We understand that a gentleman is preparing a full and scientific description of the gold, and the region in which it was found.

Note: Newfane is the county seat of Windham Co., Vermont, which adjoins Windsor Co. (early boyhood home of Joseph Smith, Jr.) on the south. It is not located in a region known for the presence of precious minerals, and it is possible that the gold nugget reportedly found there in 1826 was a "salted" specimen.

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