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REPORT No. 1138
MONUMENT COMMEMORATING FIRST PERMANENT
SETTLEMENT OF THE WEST, HARRODSBURG, KÝ.
JUNE 30, 1930.--Ordered to be printed
Mr. BARKLEY, from the Committee on the Library, submitted the
[To accompany S. 4384)
This is a bill authorizing the erection of a suitable monument to the memory of the first permanent settlement of the West, at Harrodsburg, Ky.
The Committee on the Library recommends the passage of the bill.
The settlement at Harrodsburg, or Fort Harrod, was the first permanent settlement west of the Allegheny Mountains, it was here that George Rogers Clark organized the expedition which reclaimed the vast territory of the Northwest for the United States and assured the Mississippi River as the western boundary of the new Nation.
In the crisis of the Revolutionary War, Harrodsburg, the frontier settlement, was next to Pittsburgh in importance and far removed. The Kentucky pioneers, of the revolutionary west, were men and women of dauntless spirit and heroic mold; our ancestors who left home and civilization far behind them and over the mountains, who lighted their fires in the trackless wilderness while there lurked, concealed upon every side, the deadliest and most relentless of savage foes. Notwithstanding these hardships and perils, the little band of pioneers came, explored, encountered, and endured.
It was at this place that Gen. George Rogers Clark conceived his plan of the conquest of the great Northwest, and it was from here on October 1, 1777, he took his initial step to lay his plans before Gov. Patrick Henry, of Virginia, for an expedition into the Illinois Territory to proceed across the Ohio, attack England in the heart of the West, wrest military posts from her hands, break up Indian outrages and seize the vast domain of the central west for the Union.
At a meeting held in Harrodsburg on June 6, 1776, Clark was elected as a delegate to the Virginia Assembly. The papers which Clark carried were petitions of the settlers denying Henderson &
Co.'s priority claims and praying for Virginia's protection and a county government, and also to secure some powder for protection of the forters. Upon the securing of powder hung the existence of the Kentucky settlers, for powder was the scarcest essential of war and the Kentuckians had almost none.
As a result of this meeting, Clark secured the powder which was transported to Harrodsburg and it became the first arsenal of the West. This meeting also marked the beginning of the end of proprietary government on the free soil of the United States forever. It was also the first effective step toward making Kentucky a commonwealth and marks the first election in Kentucky and the beginning of the development of the great Northwest. I might add that all the laws enacted by the House of Burgesses in molding the destiny of the West were done upon petition and dictation of Kentucky pioneers held at meetings in and around Harrodsburg.
On April 20, 1777, Clark sent Benn Linn and Samuel Moore of old Fort Harrod as spies to Illinois, instructing them to go as hunters to St. Louis, seemingly to dispose of beaver skins and to procure supplies; after which to go over to Kaskaskia and learn the British situation there. On June 22 they returned to Harrodsburg with the desired information.
Three of the four original captains who went with Clark into the Illinois Territory came from Fort Harrod-Joseph Bowman, William Harrod, and Leonard Helm.
Joseph Bowman was in command at Cahokia, William Harrod was in command at Kaskaskia, and Leonard Helm was in command at Vincennes. When Hamilton surrendered and led his scarlet-clad soldiers of the King's Own Army between the lines of Clark's men, it was Leonard Helm, of old Fort Harrod, who hoisted the first American flag to fly over Vincennes and the British West.
In a letter of John Todd's written at Fort Harrod which was published by the Filson Club of Louisville, in their magazine, the Historic Quarterly, Todd states that Fort Harrod spared Clark about 60 men. On the Vincennes expedition Clark had about 150 men, and it can be readily seen that old Fort Harrod supplied him with more than one-third of his defenders.
Others who shared in the command and whose names adorn the pages of pioneer history of America, and who at one time occupie Fort Harrod, were: Silas Harlan, Edward Worthington, Isaac Bowman, Robert Todd, Simon Kenton, John Todd, Abraham Chapline.
Harlan and Worthington were captains in the expedition, Isaac Bowman, a lieutenant; Robert Todd, paymaster at Vincennes; Simon Kenton, a spy at Vincennes, and John Todd, who was the presiding justice of the first court held in Kentucky, at Horrodsburg, on September 2, 1777.
To this list scores of others might be added.
We believe, Mr. Chairman, that the Government should recognize this spot and its historic preeminence.
All the elements which have made America famous were contained within the narrow confines of this stockaded stronghold.
Courage and vision and kindliness as distinguished such leaders as Boone and Logan and Harrod. Daniel Boone assisted Harrod and his men in laying out Harrodstown when it was founded June 16, 1774. Boonesboro was established April 1, 1775, and the same method of in-lots and out-lots which was used in the laying off of Harrodsburg was adopted by Boone at Boonesboro.
Religion, as practiced by the Rev. John Lythe and Squire Boone, the first preacher in the wilderness, who came with Bible in one hand and ax in the other.
Superb generalship, for here in old Fort Harrod, General George Rogers Clark planned the conquest of the great Northwest.
Statesmanship and culture, exemplified by John Todd, who was the first civil governor of the Illinois, the first American government northwest of the Ohio.
The CHAIRMAN. Is that the same Todd who later came to the Supreme Court of the United States?
Mr. ISENBERG. I do not know definitely about that, but he played an active part in the early history of our country.
Agriculture: It was in old Fort Harrod that William Pogue made the first wooden plow of the West, and at Harrodsburg James Harmon planted the first corn.
Education: Mrs. Jane Coomes taught the first school in the wilderness while Indians prowled around the walls of the fort. The only book from which she taught was the English Horn book.
Industry: And McGinty brought the first spinning wheel over the Alleghenies and used it wisely and with energy.
The first American homes: The first four mothers who entered the western wilderness were Mrs. Daniel Boone, Mrs. Hugh McGary, Mrs. Thomas Denton, and Mrs: Richard Hogan. The four mothers with their families came into Kentucky in one party. Mrs. Boone, leaving the original party, went to Boonesboro; the last three mentioned came direct to Fort Harrod on September 8, 1777. Fort Harrod was the strongest point of defense in Kentucky, and the wives and children of the brave pioneers were placed there for safety when unable to protect them in their own forts.
This is evidence of a great historic spot and a suitable monument should be erected in Harrodsburg to commemorate these stirring events.
BRIDGE ACROSS CAMAS SLOUGH, COLUMBIA RIVER,
JUNE 30, 1930.-Ordered to be printed
Mr. Jones, from the Committee on Commerce, submitted the
[To accompany 8. 4663]
The Committee on Commerce, to whom was referred the bill (S. 4663) granting the consent of Congress for the construction of a dyke or dam across the head of Camas Slough to Lady Island on the Columbia River in the State of Washington, have considered the same and report thereon with amendments and as so amended, recommend that the bill do pass.
Amend the bill as follows:
Page 1, line 5, strike out the word "dyke”, and insert in lieu thereof the word “dike”.
Page 1, line 5, after the word “Slough" insert “(Washougal Slough)”.
Page 1, line 8, strike out the word “dyke" and insert in lieu thereof the word "dike".
Page 1, lines 9 and 10, strike out the words "Secretary of War and the".
Page 2, line 1, after the word "Army" insert "and the Secretary of War: Provided further, That in approving the plans for said dike or dam such conditions and stipulations may be imposed as the Chief of Engineers and the Secretary of War may deem necessary to protect the present and future interests of the United States."
Page 2, line 2, strike out the word “dyke”, and insert in lieu thereof the word "dike"
Page 2, after line 3, insert new paragraph as follows:
SEC. 2. The authority granted by this act shall cease and be null and void unless the actual construction of said dike or dam hereby authorized is commenced within one year and completed within three years from the date of approval of this act.