HISTORY OF TRIGG COUNTY
ORGANIZATION OF THE COUNTY-ACT OF TILE LEGISLATURE FOR ITS FORMATION-JUSTICES OF THE PEACE FOR THE NEW COUNTY-THE FIRST OFFICERS-NAME OF THE COUNTY-COL. STEPHEN TRIGG-LOCATION OF THE SEAT OF JUSTICE-REPORT OF THE COMMISSISNERS-CADIZ-COUNTY COURT-THE FIRST CIVILL DIVISIONS-TAVERN RATES-ORDERS FOR MILLS AND ROADS-THE FIRST CIRCUIT COURT-EARLY JUDICIARY AND BAR-THE GRAND JURY-EXTRACTS FROM THE QUAINT OLD RECORDS- LAYING OUT THE COUNTY SEAT-FIRST TRUSTEES-C0IJRT PROCEEDINGS-HON. LINN BOYD-VOTE ON RE.LOCATION OF COUNTY SEAT- CHANGES OF BOUNDARY-MARRIAGE LICENSE--THE CENSUS-STATISTICS-COUNTY OFFICERS, ETC., ETC.
When the first permanent settlements were made in the present County of Trigg, it formed a part of Christian County, and was under the jurisdiction of that county for a number of years and in fact until it became quite thickly settled. Christian County was originally a large district of country extending north to the Ohio River and west of the Mississippi. As it settled up new counties were formed and its territory lessened by frequent drafts until the close of the year 1819, when efforts began to be made for the formation of Trigg County.
The legislative act under which the county was created is entitled "An Act for the formation of the county of Trigg out of the counties of Christian and Caldwell," and was passed by the Kentucky Legislature at the regular winter session of 1819-20. It was approved by the acting Governor, Gabriel Slaughter, on the 27th of January, 1820. The material part of the act reads as follows:
"Be it enacted by the General Assembly, that from and after the 1st day of April next, all that part of said counties of Christian and Caldwell contained in the following boundaries, to wit:
"Beginning at a point ten miles due west from the northwestwardly limits of the town of Hopkinsville; thence southwardly to Lindsay's Mill on Little River; thence due south to the Tennessee State line; thence west with said line to the Tennessee River; thence down the same to the mouth of a creek on which Levi Davis now lives; thence up said creek, leaving Davis in Caldwell County; thence to the mouth of Crooked Creek, so as to leave the inhabitants on said creek in the proposed county, except Daniel Osborne Esq.; thence toward Simon Sherford's horse-mill to the Christian County line, so as to leave the inhabitants of Hurricane Creek in Caldwell County; thence with the present Caldwell line and Christian line to a point on said line within two miles of Calley's horse-mill; thence from said two-mile point southeast to intersect a line running from the ten-mile point; thence south to the beginning, shall be one distinct county, called and known by the name of Trigg," etc.
The remaining sections of the act, which is rather a long one, are omitted. These, when divested of the said whereases with which they are encumbered, stipulate among other things, that a copy of the proceedings be furnished Abraham Boyd, Ferdinand Wadlington, John Goode, Samuel Orr, William Scott, Presley Slaughter, James Daniel, Beman Fowler and Richard Dawson, who are named in the act as Justices of the Peace for the said county. These Justices were required to meet at the house of Samuel Orr in the village of Warrington on the 15th day of May. 1820, for the purpose of effecting the permanent organization of the county; and their proceedings on that occasion are described on the old records, as follows:
"In pursuance of an act of Assembly of the Commonwealth, entitled an act, etc., etc., approved January 27, 1820, Abraham Boyd (then follow names of others), met at the dwelling-house of Samuel Orr in said county of Trigg, on Monday, the 15th day of May, 1820, and produced a commission from his Excellency, Gabriel Slaughter, Lieutenant-Governor, acting Governor of this Commonwealth, appointing them Justices of the Peace for the county aforesaid-whereupon the said Abraham Boyd, being eldest in commission, administered to the said (here names) the oath of fidelity to the United States, the oath to support the Constitution of this Commonwealth, the oath of office and the oath required by an act of the Assembly to suppress the practice of dueling, and thereupon the said Presley Slaughter administered to the said Abraham Boyd the said several oaths." Thomas Raleigh produced a commission, signed by the Governor, appointing him, said Raleigh, Sheriff of said County of Trigg, whereupon he took the said several oaths, and together with Charles ~, George Loftus, William Armstrong and George Daniel, his securities, entered into and acknowledged bond in the penalty of $3,000, conditioned for the faithful discharge of his general duties, and thereupon a County Court was begun and held for the County of Trigg aforesaid at the dwelling-house of said Samuel Orr, in said town of Warrington, on Monday, May 15, 1820."
At that court William Cannon, Jr., produced a certificate of the Judges of the Court of Appeals, to the effect that he had been examined by the Clerk in their presence and under their direction, and that they urged him well "qualified to perform the duties of Clerk of any County Circuit Court or courts of equal dignity within the Commonwealth." H€ was accordingly appointed to the position, and entered into and acknowledged bond in the sum of $10,000 for the faithful discharge of the several duties of his office, giving as his securities John G. Reynolds, James Bradley and Thomas Asbury. The ability with which Mr. Cannor discharged the duties of his office is attested by all who transacted business with him during his administration, and his early records are among the most legible and systematic to be found in the State.
The other officers appointed at the first sitting of the court were: Fielding Harrison, Coroner, with Allen Grace, Ephraim Harsberger and Charles Linn, securities; John Willingham, Surveyor; and George Daniel, Deputy Sheriff.
Name of County.-The county was named in honor of Col. Stephen Trigg, of Virginia, a man of great ability and soldier of renown. The only account of this distinguished character accessible is the following from Collins' History of Kentucky: first came to the district of Kentucky in the fall of 1119, as a member of the Court of Land Commissioners, and after that body had concluded its labors in the spring of 1780, determined to make the new country his permanent home. In that year he settled a station called Trigg Station or Viney Grove (sometimes called Haggin's Station after Trigg's death, because John Haggin lived there), four miles northeast of Harrodsburg on Cane Run, four miles from its mouth at Dick's River. He soon became noted for his activity against the Indians, and fell August 19, 1782, in the fatal battle of the Blue Licks while bravely leading his men to the charge. He was greatly beloved and very popular, and if he had lived would have taken rank among the most distinguished men of his time." Additional to the above brief sketch we learn that he assisted in the organization of the first court ever held in Kentucky and that he was proprietor of the original survey of 200 acres of land on the present site of Covington..
Locating the Seat of Justice.-The Commissioners appointed by law to locate permanently the seat of justice were Dickson Givens, William Thomson, Lander J. Sharp and Benjamin Vance. In accordance with the provisions of the enactment forming the county, the above-named gentlemen, after viewing the Various eligible sites and taking into consideration the donations of land, money, services, etc., submitted the following report:
Having, in pursuance of the aforesaid act, met on the 15th day of May, 1820, it being the third Monday in the said month, at the town of Warrington, and at the house formerly occupied by Samuel Orr, and proceeded to discharge the duties assigned us. After a mature and deliberate examination of the many different places proposed as sites for the ad ministration of justice at and near the center of said county, we are of opinion that the seat of justice be fixed on the lands of Robert Baker where he now lives on Main Little River on the top of the eminence above the spring, at or to include the lot wherein his stable now stands, it being the most central, convenient and eligible site for the purpose. Whereupon the said Robert Baker has this day obligated himself to convey to said County Court of Trigg, for the use of the county, together with fifty acres more to be laid off in right angles from the squares of said public square, which bond we here submit as part of the report, likewise several promissory notes given as donations.
Given under our hands and seals this 15th day of May, 1820.
Report approved May 16, 1820.
In the October term following the county seat was laid off on the land above designated, and was named Cadiz. The details will be found elsewhere in this volume. The promissory notes referred to were given by Presley Slaughter, Sevier Tadlock and Moses M. Waters and called for $100 each.
The better to dispense the ends of justice, the county was at this time laid off into civil or constabulary districts. Samuel Fowler was appointed Constable for all the territory west of the Cumberland River; Richard Ricks for that south of Donaldson Creek to Ogle's Mill and the Christian County line; Charles Linn for the territory from Donaldson's Creek north to Ogle's Mill and down Little River to the mouth of Muddy Fork and the Christian County line ; Robert Hawkins for all that part of the county. lying between the road leading from Hopkinsville to Eddyville, now Wallonia, and Samuel Campbell for all the territory north of said road on Muddy Fork. The court divided the county into two precincts for the purpose of appointing Commissioners of the Tax therein for the year 1820. It was ordered that the road leading from Hopkinsville by Shipps & Boyd's landing (now Canton) and from said landing up Cumberland River to the Tennessee State line, should be the division line between the northern and southern precincts. Thomas McFarlan was appointed Tax Commissioner for the northern district and John I. Porter for the southern.
The court continuing the next day, Benjamin Jones was released from paying poll tax; John Goode granted a license to solemnize the rites of matrimony; and Robert Baker having presented satisfactory evidence of good moral character, and being provided with such accommodations as the law required, was granted a license to keep a tavern at his house on Little River for one year, giving as securities William Murray and William Waters. The following tavern rates were fixed, to wit:
For French or Cognac brandy 37 1/2 cents per half pint
For rum or domestic gin 25 cents per half pint
For Holland gin 871 cents per half pint
For Madeira wine 50 cents per half pint
For port, sherry or other wines 37 1/2 cents per half pint
For peach and apple brandy 18 3/4 cents per half pint
For whisky 121 cents per half pintFor porter per quart or Bottle . 20 cents
For cider per quart 121 cents
Lodging per night 121 cents
For breakfast, dinner and supper 25 cents each
For horse for stallage and feeding, corn and oats, and hay or fodder for each 24 hours 50 cents
Horse to pasture for each 12 hours 37 1/2 cents
Oats and corn per gallon 121 cents
Ordered that the tavern-keepers of the county charge and receive according to the above rates and no more.
Remarkably cheap times those, but bless the simple lives of the honest forefathers, they knew nothing about "black strap," "rot gut," "tangle leg " and the thousand-and-one fancy drinks with which the guests of our modern hotels and "sample rooms" regale themselves. The first order for erecting a mill was made on motion of George Loftus, and the Sheriff was commanded to summon twelve good and lawful free holders of the county to meet upon the premises the first Saturday in June, to consider the same and report thereof according to law to the next term of the court. This mill was erected on Sinking Fork of Little River.
The first public road that was asked to be established in the county was one from Cadiz to intersect the road from Dover to the old Brannon place. David Cooper, Charles Linn, Hiram Whitney and Baxter Alexander were appointed at the same time to view a road from Baker's to the Cumberland River. Another road was asked for from the seat of justice to Princeton and the county line, and Absalom Leavills, Moses McWaters, William Husk and Presley Slaughter were appointed viewers thereof. A road was also asked for leading from the county seat toward Hopkinsville, to intersect a road from Hopkinsville to Boyd's Landing. Rowland Hill said that all roads and by-paths of England lead toward London, and with the same propriety we can say that all the early highways of Trigg County led to Cadiz.
After dispensing with all other county business, on the 16th day of May, 1820, and before adjournment, we find the following general order:
The Commissioners appointed by law to fix upon a place for the permanent seat of justice for Trigg County, having done so, fix the same on the land of Robert Baker where he now lives on Main Little River, etc. It is ordered that the books, papers, etc., of this county be moved to the dwelling of the said Robert Baker. and that this court be adjourned until court in course and then be held at the dwelling house of said Robert Baker as aforesaid."
First Circuit Court.-The Honorable Benjamin Shackelford, Judge of the Seventh Judicial District, on the 15th day of May, at the town of Warrington, held the first Circuit Court in Trigg County. William Cannon was appointed Clerk, thereupon completing the county organization. No grand jury was impaneled at this court, no other business transacted and no other order made except one permitting Fidelio Sharp, Benjamin W. Patton, Daniel S. Maya, James Breathitt and William McDowell, to be admitted to practice law.
The early judiciary of Kentucky was marked as furnishing a higher order of talent-larger-minded men-than are to be found in the early political history of the State. Many of these early jurists will take their proper place in history as among the country's best men. They mingled with the rude people, assisting, advising and counseling them for their own good and benefit. They forecast and laid well the superstructure of the civil polity of the State, and in looking into the imperfect records of their lives that are now attainable, the student of history is impressed with the fact that here indeed was Kentucky most favored and fortunate. Of the above-named lawyers Maj. McKinney in his sketches of the county says: " Ben Patton was a very eminent lawyer, but has left no traces except the frequent appearance of his name upon the docket, and position that tradition assigns him of possessing splendid abilities as an orator and advocate in the courts. Daniel S. Mays has left to posterity a record in books. He removed from this end of the State to Frankfort in an early day, and was the c3temporary and rival of Mr. Crittenden in oratory, and afterward changed his residence again to the State of Mississippi; was placed upon the Supreme Bench of that State. His decisions have been ever since, and to this day are, quoted as specimens of legal ethics containing some of the most astute principles of international and constitutional law. Mr. James Breathitt, father of John W. Breathitt of Hopkinsville, was then the Commonwealth's Attorney and a very able one he was. The name of the only remaining one of the attorneys qualified at the court is here lost sight of, and to us at least the twilight of obscurity settled over his memory forever."
Second Term of the Circuit Court.-The next term of the Circuit Court was held at the residence of Robert Baker on the 23d day of August, 1820. A grand jury of inquest was impaneled and sworn, consisting of the following persons, to wit : Williams Armstrong, Sr., foreman; Whitmill Holland, John Williams, Abraham McCullom, Joel Wilson, Ashford D. Gore, James Wallace, William Redd, Richard Davenport, John Wharton, James Jones, John Hanberry, William McWaters, Thomas Woosley, Benjamin Wallace and Eleazer Gore. There were but two indictments found at this court, one against Andrew Carter for pettit larceny, and the other against Isaac McCullom for failing to keep a road in order. The latter was dismissed at the next court, and the former continued with an alias process.
Rezin Davidge and Matthew Maya, Esqs., produced certificates of their being qualified to practice law, and having taken the prescribed oath were regularly admitted to the bar.
The first suit filed was a case of debt of Jeremiah and Moses Brown, .assignees of Sherwood Atkinson plaintiffs, against John G. Reynolds defendants. A demurrer was filed by defendant's attorney and the case thrown out of court.
The next case on docket was a suit for debt, Nathan Conduit against John Patts. In this case the defendant did not come off so well. In hat day a man was liable to imprisonment for debt, and the law seems to have been enforced, as the following order in his suit will show ; " Will-am B. Bond, special bail for the defendant John Patts in this cause, this lay surrendered the body of said Patts into court and the said bond from us undertaking herein is discharged, and on motion of the plaintiff by an attorney it is ordered that the defendant Patts be delivered into the custody of the jailor, and that further proceedings in this cause be stayed and continued until the next term of this court." How long John renamed in limbo does not appear, but the indications are that it had a ;tendency to make him keep clear of the court house, for at the November :term the cause was again called up, and proceedings continuing, to wit:
This day came the plaintiff by his attorney, but the defendant although solemnly called came not " etc. This is the last that was ever heard of John Patts.
The third case at this term was for a similar cause as the ones mentioned. Ezekiel Thomas against John Hambury and James Wimberly. Court found for plaintiff with interest at the rate of 6 per centum, from the 20th day of March, 1820, until paid, also the costs.
The first trial by jury was a cause in covenant, the parties to the suit being Daniel Mays, plaintiff, and Hugh A. Reynolds, defendant. The following jurymen served upon that occasion: John McWaters, George Buckner, William Husk, Thomas McFarland, Alexander Wilson, Drew Holland, Thomas Doler, Thomas Young, John Young, William Young, John Patrick and Ambrose Mills. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the defendant, fining the plaintiff $100 and costs.
The second petit jury was composed of the following gentlemen, to wit: William Young, Randolph Guinn, Willis Minton, Hampton Wade, Henry McCombe, Thomas Armstrong, Smith Martin, David Mitchell. Abraham Cowley, Baxter Alexander, Richard Jones and John Young.
Subsequent Session of the Circuit Court.-The third term of the Circuit Court was held in the month of November, 1S20. his honor, Judge Shackelford, presiding. The following grand jurors were impaneled and duly sworn, viz.: George Street, foreman ; Jacob Torian, William Cunningham, Lipscomb Norvell, Ashford D. Gore, Archer Boyd, Luke Thomas, Whitmill Holland, Baxter Alexander, Zenas Alexander, James Sevills, Zadeck Thomas, Stephen Peall, Daniel L. Futrell, Jaconias P. Pool, Timothy Jones, William McWaters and Edmund Wells. Indictments were returned against Ebenezer Boyd for assault and battery, a true bill Andrew Carter, for petit larceny; a presentment against Rezin Davidge for profane cursing, a true bill; indictment against James Jones, for assault and battery; presentment against William Adams for profane swearing, and an indictment against Asher C. Davis for assault and battery. Other bills were found against Elijah Ladd for arson; Ebenezer Boyd, trespass, assault and battery; Robert M. Coleman, George Thrifk, William J. Worthington and Randolph Walker, assault and battery; William Murray for swearing; David Mitchell and Jesse Wormack, for profanity.
Our forefathers in those primitive times seem to have had a profound regard for morality and good order. In searching among the musty records in the clerk's office, the historian's fingers came in contact with a package of old indictments, time-stained and bearing the dates of 1820 and 1821. A few specimens of these quaint and curiously worded documents are given, to show how the minions of the law dealt with offenders sixty-five years ago.
One John Wooldridge, in an altercation with a neighbor on the Sabbath day and yielding to the impulse of a warm temper, violated one of the commandments by assaulting said neighbor, and was held to answer to the following indictment:
"COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY,
"The Grand Jurors for the Commonwealth aforesaid, impaneled and sworn for the circuit aforesaid, at the November term of the circuit, for said circuit, in the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty-one, in the name and by the authority of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, upon their oaths, represent that John Wooldridge, late of the Circuit aforesaid, yeoman, on the fifteenth day of July, in the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty-one, to wit, on the Sabbath day in the Circuit aforesaid did assault and beat one James Gillum, which said business of assaulting and beating the said James Gillum by the said John Wooldridge, an the Sabbath day aforesaid, was not an ordinary household office of daily necessity, or work of necessity or charity, contrary to the form and statute in that case made and provided, and against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
"Information given by James Gillum, living in Trigg County, by profession a laborer, and Samuel Moore, living in Trigg County, and by profession a farmer, both not of the grand jury."
For the above trifling and uncharitable offense, the pugilistic Wooldridge was fined the sum of "five shillings, which sum was duly paid and turned over to the proper fund." The next indictment was for profane "cursing," and reads as follows:
"Trigg Circuit Court. The grand jurors for the Commonwealth, &c., &c., at the May term of the Circuit Court for said Circuit, in the year 1822, in the name and by the authority of the Commonwealth of Kentucky upon their oaths represent that Miles Creekmer, late of the Circuit aforesaid, yeoman, on the 21st day of May, in the year 1822, did profanely curse by then and there profanely uttering and speaking the profane words following, to wit: 'Oh, God damn the fine' contrary to the form of the statute in that case made and provided, and against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Information given by John A. Caudle, Mel Olive and John Craig, all of the grand jury." What was done with the blasphemous wretch is not known, though it is presumed that he met with a summary punishment, as the courts in those days were chary in dealing out mercy to offenders. We cannot forbear giving the substance of another indictment returned against Uncle Gabriel Davy, who offended the dignity of the law by profanity also. It charges that he did "on the 20th day of May, 1822, in the Circuit aforesaid, twice profanely curse by then and there twice profanely uttering and speaking the profane words following, to wit: 'You are a God damned liar,' contrary to the form of the statute, against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth. Information given by George Grace and John Caldwell." He was tried and fined 10 shillings and costs, which seemed to have a salutary influence upon the old gentleman's morals, and as far as the books show it was his last violation of the decalogue.
The third grand jury was composed of the following citizens: Thomas Raleigh, Samuel Orr, Luke Thomas, William F. Dew, Elijah Whitney, Robert Anston, James Puckett, John Patterson, John Breeding, James A. Lindsay, John W. Lindsay, Henry Jones, Baxter Alexander, John Humphries, John Mills, Armstrong Noel, Benjamin Faulkner, Samuel Scott and William McWaters. About the usual number of indictments were returned, the majority of which were for drunkenness, Sabbath breaking and profane swearing. in May, 1822, the following grand jury was impaneled and sworn: Thomas Raleigh, John A. Candle, Joel Wilson, John Craig, William Lawrence, Isaac Gray, David Cooper, George Grace, William Young, John Prescott, Henry James, Smith Martin, John Caldwell and M. Oliver.
Harmon Alsbury was admitted to the bar in 1823; James I. Dozier, 1824; James Cartwright, John W. S. Moore and Thomas A. Duncan, in 1821; Matthew D. Patton and Robert A. Patterson, in 1825; Josiah C. Smith, Garrard Pitts, James W. Calloway and Thomas Hammond, in 1824; Richard L. Maya, Thomas Haynes and Gustabus A. Henry, in 1827; Philetnon C. Frayeer and Irwin Hallowell, in 1828. The first deed ever admitted to record in this county was from Ezra Cox and Polly, his wife, to Jonathan Ricks for 150 acres of land on the waters of Dry Creek, for which he paid them $1,000. The second deed was recorded May 30, 1820, and was from Thomas 0. Bryant and Anna, his wife, conveying to Philip Ford, James J. Morrison and John U. Reynolds a certain tract of land lying on Main Little River, being a part of a 200-acre tract originally granted to George Wilson by the Court of Commissioners in 1798. A third indenture made on the 14th day of June, in the year 1820, between Edwin Noel, of the County of Trigg, and Delila Noel, Frances G. Noel, Emily Noel, Edwin Noel, Caleb Noel and Washington Noel donates, gives and grants to his six children the following property, to wit: One negro man, Will by name, a blacksmith, with his tools; Phyllis, his wife; also Levering and Jack, children of the said Will and Phyllis; and James, another blacksmith; and McKinsey, a yellow boy; also a negro girl by name of Nancy; together with the interest in his mother's estate and a tract of 600 acres of land on Cumberland River, all of which property to be divided among the children in such a way and manner as to them seems best.
Second County Court. - In June, 1820, John McCaughn was appointed Surveyor of Trigg County. At the same term George Daniel was appointed Sheriff to fill the vacancy occasioned by the resignation of Thomas Raleigh. Thomas McLean produced to the court his credentials of ordination as a Minister of the Gospel, and was granted a testimonial in due form of his being legally authorized to solemnize the rites of matrimony. Whereupon he took the oath required by law, and together with James Thomas and Drury Bridges, securities, gave the accustomed bond of £500.
At the August term, 1820, James Thompson was appointed jailor. Samuel Orr, Presley Slaughter and James Daniel were appointed Commissioners to lay off the public square in Cadiz. The order alluded to reads as follows: "It is ordered that the said fifty-two acres of land shall compose and constitute a town, and the same is hereby established as such, to be known and called by the name of Cadiz, which shall be contained within the following metes and bounds." Here follows the boundary. "The whole of said town of Cadiz containing, according to the foregoing metes and bounds, the quantity of fifty-two acres, and the part besides the public square that has by former order of this court been laid off is directed to be laid off into lots of one-fourth of an acre square, being four in a block, and the main and cross streets of the width of sixty feet each, crossing each other at right angles; and it is further ordered that Sevier Tadlock, William Redd, Charles Jones, Absalom Leavills, David Cooper, Levi Harlan and James Harlan are hereby appointed Trustees of said town." From this date the history of Cadiz proper begins.
The county levy at this term was fixed at 75 cents, and the following allowances for the year entered upon record:
Say 840 tithables in this county for the present year, on which a levy of 75 cents is and shall be laid, making $630. No further business of importance was transacted at this term.
- To the Clerk of the Court for ex-officio services rendered by him within the last six months $ 20 00
- To the Commonwealth's Attorney for same time 16 00
- To the Sheriff for same time 17 00
- To Abraham Sevills for a Clerk's table 8 00
- To Elizabeth Bell for keeping John White, an infant 5 00
- To same for keeping, clothing an orphan one year from this date 60 00
- To James Thompson, Jailor, for attending court six days 6 00
- To Francis Summers, a Deputy Surveyor, for running this coun ty's lines as per act. Sled 46 50
- To Abraham Humphrie2, Jr., for carrying chain 14 days 14 00
- To William Watts for 13 days rendering same service 13 00
- To John McCaughn for 10 days making survey 10 00
- To Robert Baker for cash paid by him to Commissioners in fixing the seat of justice 102 00
- To John McCaughn, Surveyor of the county, for laying off the town of Cadiz and other services rendered as per acts filed 27 50
- To Abraham Boyd, Esq., for attending as Judge of the last elec tion 3 days 3 00
- To James Daniel for same service 3 00
- To James Coleman for same service 3 00
- To Commissioners for contracting and superintending the build ing of the jail of this county 200 00
- A deposition of 76 00
- Amount to be collected $630 00
The following year, 1821, the levy was fixed at 431 cents, and the number of tithables was 940. The allowances at the October term of 1821 aggregated $411.25. For 1822 the levy was fixed at 43 3/4 cents per tithable, and $444.051 were collected, making the number of tithes that year 1,015. The allowances at the October term amounted to $506.451. At the April term, 1821, the county was laid off into four precincts for the purpose of appointing Commissioners of the Tax therein. Abraham Boyd was appointed Sheriff in 1822, with Charles Linn, George H. Gordon and John Boyd, securities.
The following incident is related by Mr. McKinney: "The 16th day of October, 1820, being the regular day oin course, court was begun and held at the seat of justice; present, Abraham Boyd, presiding Justice, with his usual attendants. . After some minor orders had been made and whilst Matthew Mays, a young man then County Attorney, was making an examination of the conveyances from Robert Baker to the county, the Clerk William Cannon was busily engaged in drawing up the order giving the present boundaries of the town of Cadiz, the proceedings were suddenly interrupted by a loud yell and the discharge of a rifle in the bottom just back of the present residence of Ed Summers. The bottom at that time was covered with a heavy growth of beech and cane. For a time little attention was paid to it. By-and-by, however, the cry of "bear, bear" was heard. This caused a universal commotion in the court room, all hands rushing to the door, upsetting chairs, stools, tables and inkstands as they went out. Maj. Mays in laughing over it used to say that everybody was excited to death about the animal except the Clerk, who quietly went to. work righting up his table and books and cursing the d-n heathens for upsetting the ink on his papers. There had a very large crowd gathered that day, and on reaching the door a large black bear, badly wounded, suddenly emerging from the thicket came rushing through the crowd, scattering men and horses in promiscuous confusion as he went. He came within thirty yards of the little log room in which they had assembled to hold the court, and passing over the hill he hauled up at the head of the big spring. Here Tommy Wadlington, with' a rifle he had caught up from Baker's store, got in another shot. Finding matters still growing warmer, bruin skipped from there, and crossing the river just below Lindsay's old fishing place, was dispatched by an old hunter on the opposite bank."
At the September term of 1820, John Mayberry was recommended to the Judges of the Court of Appeals and the Circuit Court of the Commonwealth as " a gentleman who intended to apply for a license to practice law, and is a gentleman of property and honest demeanor." Silas Alexander was appointed Captain, and Tom Thompson, John Patton, William Smith and Augustine W. Holland his assistants.
Linn Boyd having produced his certificate from the Governor, was allowed to qualify as Paymaster of the Seventy-second Regiment of Kentucky Militia, after giving bond in penalty of $1,000. On the 15th of Dec ember, 1823, he was appointed Deputy Sheriff of Trigg County; and on the 24th of May, following, on motion of George Boyd, was reappointed. " What a wonderful incentive this is to young men of the present day. This same Linn Boyd, Deputy Sheriff of Trigg County, served eighteen years as a member The Congress, four years as Speaker of the House of Representatives-third in the regular line of descent from the Presidency of the United States-and died Lieutenant-Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, mourned not only by the people of the State, but the nation."
Hon. Linn Boyd.-Tbe following brief sketch of this distinguished gentleman is copied from Collins' History of Kentucky: "Linn Boyd was born in Nashville, Tenn., November 22, 1800. His educational advantages were limited, but he was a man of great force of character and strong native intellect. In early manhood he removed to southern Kentucky, and settled on the Cumberland River, in what is now Trigg County. He soon engaged in politics and took an active part in the early political struggles of the county. He was a Representative in the State Legislature in 1827 from the counties of Calloway, Graves, Hickman and McCracken; in 1828, from Calloway, and in 1831, from Trigg County. He represented the First District in Congress in 1835-37, and in 1839 was again elected, serving by regular elections until 1855, in all eighteen years, during four years of which he occupied the distinguished position of Speaker of the House of Representatives-an honor never conferred oftener or longer in eighty-three years except upon Nathaniel Macon, Henry Clay and Andrew Stevenson. In 1859 he was chosen Lieutenant-Governor upon the Democratic ticket, but when the Senate met was too ill to preside over its deliberations and died at Paducah, December 17, 1859. Mr. Boyd was distinguished in politics as a strict Constitutional Democrat."
Vote on Relocation of County Seat.-The location of the seat of justice at Cadiz did not meet general approval, and in December, 1821, an act was passed by the General Assembly authorizing the citizens of the county to fix upon a place for the permanent seat of justice, the same to be decided by ballot. At the March term of court, 1822, an election was ordered for the purpose of deciding the matter, and George Street, Richard P. Dawson and Beman Fowler were appointed Judges, and William Cannon Clerk for the same. The places competing for the honor were the following, to wit: Cadiz, Boyd's Landing (now Canton), Warrington and Center. The election was held in Cadiz on the 6th day of March, 1822, the friends of the rival cities being out in full force. The vote stood as follows: Cadiz, 295; Boyd's Landing, 204 ; Warrington, 69; Center, 59. Thus was the matter of locating the county seat effectually decided, although the town of Canton made several strenuous efforts to have it changed in later years.
Changes in the County Boundary.-As originally surveyed, the northern boundary of the county was very irregular-a fact which gave rise to touch annoyance and dissatisfaction to the citizens of both Trigg and Caldwell Counties. To adjust the matter several "curtails" were added to Trigg from the former county, the first of which was made on the 17th day of April, 1826. In June, following, a second "curtail" of sixteen miles lying between the Cumberland and Tennessee Rivera was added, and in July or me same year a tract at land extending from the mouth of Hurricane Creek six and a half miles to the northeast was also added, thus making the northern boundary a comparatively straight line.
Early Marriages.-During the first two years after the county was created there were twenty-nine marriage licenses issued, as follows:
Isaac Lockhart and Polly Williams, June 10, 1820;
William Bridges and Polly Thomas,
Samuel Fowler and Jane Bratton,
Matthew Williams and Sally Jones,
Thomas Skinner and Susanna Bryant,
John Beardon and Nelly Young,
John Walker and Sally Tedford,
Samuel McClure and Patsey Bretton,
William Miller and Elizabeth Grace,
Alison Williams and Sally Barndale,
Larkin Gilbert and Valley Coffield,
William Clark and Sophia Dawson,
William Jones and Nicy Howard,
Needham Coleman and Mary Tart,
James Bayless and Delia Noel,
Basil Holland, Jr., and Elvira Cooper,
Thomas L. Baker and Malinda Cunningham.
The contracting parties to the first marriage in 1821 were Perry Thomas and Elizabeth Bridges, both of whom are yet living.
Then appear the names of :
James Tart and Polly Lawrence,
Joseph MeKinney and Betsey Wicker,
George Bratton and Polly Bratton,
Jackson Allen and Susannah Stames.
William Daniel and Huldah Chapman,
Aaron Collins and Susan-nab Watts,
James Knight and Nancy Cotton,
Levin Ross and Susan Anderson,
Newton Davenport and Ellender Morris,
Meredith Brown and Sarah Boyd,
William Goode and Gincy Walker.
The first license issued in 1822 was to Moses McWaters and Telitha Tanner.
Census of the County.-In 1820 the county had a population of 3,870 souls. The population in 1830 was 5,916; in 1840, 7,716; in 1850, 10,129; in 1860, 11,051; in 1870, 13,686. The following was the population in 1880 by magisterial districts: District No. 1, 1,995; No. 2, including Rock Castle, 1,603; No. 3, including Wallonia, 1,788; No. 4, 2,259; No. 5, including Canton, 1,819; No. 6, including Cadiz and Montgomery, 4,220; No. 7, 755. Total, 14,489.
Statistics. - - total amount of taxable returned by the Assessor in 1820 was $960,000. The number of tithables in the northern district that year was 422; in the southern, 397. In 1883 the legal voters in the county, distributed among the precincts, were as follows:
Rock Castle 134
Laura Furnace 89
Cerulean Springs 154
Roaring Springs 826 Bethesda .108
Ferguson Springs 134
Golden Pond 189
Number of children in the county between the ages of six and twenty-one 3,122
- Number of acres returned for taxation 252,592
- Assessed value of lands $1,201,323
- Number of town lots 228
- Value of lots $123,608
- Number of horses 2,278
- Value of horses $115,295
- Number of mules 2,289
- Value of mules $138,083
- Number of sheep 5,400
- Value of sheep $11,777
- Number of hogs 13,071
- Value of hogs $28,573
- Number of hogs over six months old 3,923
- Number of cattle 5,206
- Value of cattle $16198
- Number of stores 65
- Value of stock carried by stores 81,125
- Value of pleasure carriages, barouches, etc $131.46
- Value of gold and silverware $12,677
- Total 'value of taxable at 47 1/2 per cent per $100 $1,963,667
- Number of pounds of tobacco raised 4,724,745
- Number tons of hay 973
- Number bushels of corn 626,564
- Bushels of wheat 125,924
- Tons of pig iron 800
County Officers.-Senators-The names of all the Senators for Trigg County were not learned, not do those that are given below appear in their regular order. in the year 1826, George L. Locker was elected State Senator for the Counties Todd, Christian and Trigg. Francis Summers 'represented the same counties in 1827 and 1831. After Summers, the following persons represented Trigg in the upper house of the Legislature, viz., Alfred Boyd, Isaac Burnett, George W. Barbour, Ira Ellis, T. W. Hammond, James Bryan, - Irwin, G. A. C. Holt, James B. Garnett, 3'. H. Wilkinson and Robert Burnett.
Representatives.-The following are the names of the Representatives of the county and the years they served : 'Thomas Caldwell, 1824-25; George Street, 1825-.-26; Abraham Boyd, 1827-28; George Venable, 1829; Lipscomb Norvell, 1830; Linn Boyd, 1831; James B. Thompson, 1832; Isaac Burnett, 1833-34-51-53; Since A. G. Noel, 1835; Lisenby Nance, 1836-40; George W. Barbour, 1837; Thomas B. Redd. 1838-39; Allen T. Noe, 1841-42-43--48; Charles Humphries, 1844-53-55; John C. Whitlock, 1845; William Sorley, 1846-47; StanleyThomas, 1849; Daniel Landes, 1850; Gordon B. Grasty, 1855-57; John Roach, 1858-59; Young A. Linn, 1859-61; John W. Gaines, 1861-62, resigned January 20, 1862, and was succeeded by John Humphries; Samuel Larkins, 1863-65; Fenton Simma, 1865-69; G. W. Quick, 1869-71; M. B. McKenzie, 1871-73; Matthew McKinney, 18Th-75---76; R. A. Burnett, 1877-79; Jabez Bingham present incumbent elected in 1882. The representatives from Christian and Trigg Counties in 1820 were James Ruffin and J. C. Cravens. George Daniels represented the same counties in 1821 and 1822. Sheriffs.-Thomas Raleigh, 1820; George Daniel, 1820-21; Abraham Boyd, 1822-23; Ferdinand Wadlington, 1824-25; William Scott, 1826-29; Presley Slaughter, 1830-31; James Daniel, 1832-33; R. S. Dawson, 1834; Levi Lancaster from June, 1834 to 1836; William Hop-son, 1837; W. C. Haydon, 1838; Cullen Thomas, 1840; William Mc-Waters, 1842-43; T. W. Hammond, 1844-47; J. J. Morrison, 1848; James Garnett, 1849; John Humphries, 1850; Stanley Thomas, 1851- 52-53-54; A. B. Dyer, 1855-56-57.-58-63-64-66-69-70; John L. Humphries, '1867-68; John J. Dyer, 1859-60-61-62; R. W. Major, 1871-72-73-74; W. M. Campbell, 1875-76-77; William Peal, 1879, short term. The present Sheriff is Thomas Boyd.
Circuit Judges.-Benjamin Shackelford, Henry Brown, H. J. Stites, Collins D. Bradley, George B. Cook, N. B. Gray, T. C. Dabney, R. T. Petrie and John R. Grace.
Circuit Clerks.-William Cannon, J. E. Thompson, H. C. Burnett, R. A. Burnett, B. J. Wall, Isaac Burnett and John Shaw.
County Clerks.-William Cannon, J. E. Thompson, A. S. Dabney, A. B. Dyer, Matthew McKinney, and C. C. Hook. The present incumbent is John G. Jefferson who has held the office continuously since 1869.
County Judge.-T. C. Dabney, J. E. Thompson, J. R. Grace, J. H. Wilkinson, A.. B. Dyer, J. E. Kelly and Robert Crenshaw.
County Attorneys.-Matthew Maya, C. G. Bradley, 3. M. Burnett, John S. Spiceland, James B. Garnett, Robert Crenshaw, J. E. Kelly, J. R. Averitt and J. 0. Dabney. Assessors.-May field Johnson, Alfred M. Brown, Peter Nance, Collins D. Bradley, Perry Thomas, Jesse Cameron, 0. 0. Bogerd, C. Humphries, G. B. Grasty, Elliott Grace, Thomas Humphries, B. F. Caidridge, B. Wade, John Dyer, Barnett Guyer, R. H. Averitt, A. J. Cherry, J. F. Green and J'. E. Edwards.
Jailors.-James Thompson, Carter T. Wood, Jonathan Smith, Parham Randall, Moses Barbour, F. Y. Lawson, John D. Searcy, Daniel Davis, John Cameron, Sydney Hopson, T. R. Russell, 3. E. Edwards, W. H. Jefferson and G. J. Shoemaker.
Surveyors.-John McCaugban, Kain McCaughan, John Mabry, James Richardson, Henry Burress, B. B. Mart and E. Brandon. School Commissioners. --- Thomas C. Dabney, James B. Wallis, M. E. McKenzie, F. F. Jones, John S. Spiceland, James B. Garnett, Robert Crenshaw, 3. H. Wilkinson, 3. R. Averitt and C. H. Major.
First Board of Justices or Magistrates.-Abraham Boyd, Ferdinand Wadlington, John Goode, Samuel Orr, William Scott, Presley Slaughter, James Daniel, Beman Fowler and Richard Dawson. The other magistrates who served prior to 1830, were the following, to wit.: John P. Wilkinson, George Street, Lipseomb Norvell, Levin Lancaster, George H. Gordon, Stephen Landers, David Glass, John B. Hindley, Nathan Futrell, Thomas McFarlan, Philemon C. Frayser, Cullen Thomas, William C. Haydon and James J. Morrison.
Present Board.-C. C. Flora, J. W. Nunn, Blake Baker, Jr., Samuel F. Baker, John Taylor, T. G. Guthrie, W. G. Blane, Almont Dawson, Sandy Joiner, Sanford Spiceland, T. N. Ingram, F. T. Watson and Abner W. Tuttle.
Early Constables.-Robert Hawkins, Whitmill Shake, Armstrong Noe, Joqah Boyd, Richard Ricks, Starkie Thomas, A. C. Davis, John Jennings, Alfred Boyd, Samuel Northington, Thomas Thompson, Lakin Gilbert, Jonathan Cudd, David Grace, Reulen Linn, William Fowler, Charles G. Linn, Sevier Tadlock, Alfred Wimberly and Alfred Brown. Constables for 1884.-Henry B. Wilkinson, Thomas Faulkner, W. W. Jones, J. L. Ahart, J. W. Wallace and - Lancaster. The foregoing comprises as complete a list of county officers and representatives as it is possible to make it.*- County of Trigg Kentucky , HISTORICAL AND BIOGRAPHICAL - EDITED BY WILLIAM HENRY PERRIN - ILLUSTRATED. - F.A. BATTEY PUBLISHING CO. 1884.
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