History of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan
containing a full account of its early settlement; its
growth, development and resources
Surnames found on this page: BAGLEY, BAKER, BANGS, BARNARD, BENJAMIN, BENTLEY, BOSWELL, BOYDEN, BREEN, BROWN, BRUSH, BUELL, CARNEY, CARPENTER, CARTER, CHAPPIEU, COBB, COLE, , COPP, CORRY, DECOTO, DIXON, DOUGLAS, ELSWORTH, FARNSWORTH, FISK, FLESHIEM, FOWLER, GARDNER, GIBBS, GILMORE, GODDARD, GRAM, HACKBONE, HALL, HAMILTON, HANCOCK, HARRIS, HAWTHORN, HOLMES, HOSMER, HOUGHTELING, HUBBARD, HUTCHINSON, INGALLS, JEROME, JOHNSON, JONES, KIRBY, KITTSON, LAW, LEMOYNE, LUDINGTON, LYNN, LYONS, MCCAFFREY, MCCARTNEY, MCLEOD, MERRYMAN, NASON, PATRICK, PORTER, PRESCOTT, QUIMBY, SAWYER, SAXTON, SCAMMON, SHEPARD, SMITH, SOMERVILLE, SPAIDS, SPAULDING, SPINNER, STEPHENSON, STOCKBRIDGE, STRAUSS, SWIFT, UNDERWOOD, VAN SCHAICK, WELLS, , WILLIAMS, , WILLISTON, WITBECK, , WOOD, WYLEY
THE MILLS OF THE MENOMINEE
The mills built on the Wisconsin side of the Menominee River are so directly connected with the history of Menominee County, that I feel a difficulty in writing the history of those on our side of the river, and the men connected with them, without at the same time writing of those on that side. The men who built them have had large interests in Menominee County and have helped to make its history, and I shall not only feel compelled, but also take pleasure in giving their history so far as it is necessary to give a correct record of our own. In early times, no distinction was made in speaking of this part of the country, and nothing was thought of the fact that the Menominee River divided the two States - Michigan and Wisconsin. The people who resided here, on either side of the river, when asked where they lived, replied at Menominee; and a person coming here, whether on one side or the other, if asked where he was going, answered, to Menominee; and even now the people, although divided off by the State line, and part of them living in Menominee, Mich., and a part in Marinette and Menekaunee, Wis., feel that they are one people; that their interests are identical, and have always in all things of general public utility worked harmoniously together. As has been before stated, the first mill on the river was built by FARNSWORTH & BRUSH in 1832. The second one was built in 1841 by Charles MCLEOD at Twin Island Rapids, about eighteen miles up the river from its mouth, and was also run by water. From this mill the lumber was floated down the river in rafts and out to the anchorage in the bay. This was a small mill with the old-fashioned sash saw, and every thing about it but the saw and such connections as necessarily had to be of iron was constructed of wood; even the cogs of the wheels of the running works were of wood. A large portion of the work was done by Charles MCLEOD in person. This mill was run but a few years, when, owing to the low price of lumber and the expense of getting it to market, it was abandoned, and gradually fell into decay, and now nothing
remains of it but a ridge of stones across the river where the dam stood.
After the dam of the FARNSWORTH & BRUSH Mill broke away, Dr. HALL built another mill higher up the rapids. The dam of this was built across the river from the Wisconsin side to an island, and from the island to the Michigan side, and the mill was erected on the Menominee side, and soon quite a little village was built up on the bank near it for the use of the people employed in and about it. This mill was built in 1844, and had a capacity for sawing equal to 6,000,000 feet per year. Here an incident occurred that tends to illustrate life in those days. It had been the custom previous to building this dam for KITTSON and CHAPPIEU to boat their supplies of provisions and merchandise up the river. They first sacked their loaded batteaux up over the rapids, and when once above the rapids the current was not so strong as to prevent them from poling up the river to the next rapids, and then by sacking over those they found a light current again, and could continue to do the same until they reached Pemina Falls, where they were compelled to make a portage.
As I have and may again be compelled to use the words "sack or sacking," and although the word is perfectly familiar to river men, it may not be so to others, I will diverge from my subject to explain its meaning. The river men and all the lumbermen have two words that have a peculiar and technical meaning to "sack" and to "drive," or "sacking" and "driving. " When the logs or sticks of timber are running down the stream, they call that "driving". If they get stuck in the rapids, they are compelled to wade into the water and with hand pikes and pevees (pike-poles) lift and roll them off the rocks and to a place where the current is deep enough to float them, and this is called "sacking." Where a canoe or boat has to be forced up rapids where the current is so SWIFT that the boatmen cannot force their boats up with poles, they jump into the water, and, with ropes attached to the canoe or boat, wade into the water and drag it after them; the work being of a similar character to that of sacking logs they call it "sacking" also. This reminds me of an anecdote:
In early times we had living here at Menominee a lumberman and river driver who was remarkable for the Munchausen stories he told. He was always the hero of every remarkable adventure he related. He told a story at one time to illustrate his wonderful ability as a river driver. He said he was once employee with another man to take a batteau load to provisions to a camp high up the river; that his comrade called himself a first-class river driver; that they got along very well until they came to some very bad rapids, over which the river drivers usually sacked their boats, but his companion boasted so much of his powers that they concluded that instead of sacking up the rapids they should attempt to pole up that he took the forward end of the batteau and his comrade the stern; everything went well until they got nearly to the head of the rapids where the greatest pitch was, and where the water was coming down like a WOOD from an open sluice; he was facing up stream and poling with all the strength he had, when all at once he felt his end of the batteau lighten up, and looking around to see what occasioned it he found that his comrade had not kept his end of the boat up with him, and he being in the bows had pulled the batteau in two in the middle, and the -- cuss was going down stream in his end of the batteau with the goods in that end. Munchausen said he was so mad that he kept pushing his end of the boat up the rapids, and safely arrived at the head of them, and landed his part of the load on the shore; then went down to the foot of the rapids where he comrade had just reached shore with his part of it. "But the worst of it was," said he, "we had then to go clean down to mouth of the river and get another canoe and pole it up there before we could go on with our load. " He had told tho story so many times that he actually believed it, and was always ready to fight with any one who disputed it or made light of it. I started out with the intention of relating an incident which occurred at Dr. HALL's dam, and I draw on "Sketches of the Menominee River," by Lewis S. PATRICK, for the incident.
John G. KITTSON at that time lived at Wausaukee Bend, where he had a trading post and farm. CHAPPIEU lived at his trading post at the foot of CHAPPIEU's Rapids. This dam stopped them from navigating the river in the style they had followed for so many years, which raised the ire of both. The first time that KITTSON came down the river and learned that the dam had been built, his indignation was aroused, and, like the Indian chief before mentioned, he gathered his warriors about him and started on the war-path - that is, he collected the trappers and such others as stopped around his post, and started down the river to tear away the dam, fully determined to accomplish his object or die in the attempt. When they arrived at the dam, KITTSON was the first to mount it and assume all responsibility. He commenced by establishing a dead line and forbidding any one to pass within it but his own followers, on pain of death. Then with his men he soon cut away the dam and made a passage for as boats. While the work was being prosecuted. DECOTO, who did not fully understand the state of affairs, came up, and, being curious to know what was going on, came within the dead line, when KITTSON, instead of shooting him, as he had before intimated he would do to any one disobeying his orders, clinched in with him, and in the struggle which followed they both rolled into the river, and had not the other men interfered it is probable that DECOTO would soon been food for catfish. When they had dragged DECOTO to land and he had time to spout the water out of his mouth, his feelings could not be restrained, and he burst out with, "You scare Got tam John DIXON! You scar- r-e Got tam John DIXON!" and turning indignantly on his heel walked away, and until out of hearing could be heard that "You scare Got tam John DIXON!" This act of John KITTSON's in cutting away the dam led to considerable contention and some lawing, but, as the LAW machines were not in good working order, nothing came of it. All of the country from Mackinaw to the Menominee River was then within the county of Mackinaw, and there was not an officer this side of Mackinaw Island, a distance by the shore of 180 miles and no way to get there but by following the beach on foot, or by sail boat or batteaux. But FARNSWORTH determined to have law, and went to Mackinac for a warrant for KITTSON. When he arrived there and applied to a Justice for a warrant, he was informed by him that he could have one by putting up $500 to cover expenses, otherwise he could not. FARNSWORTH thought that he could rebuild the mill for less than that amount, and therefore returned without a warrant. On his return, he was arrested on a warrant issued at Green Bay, Brown Co., Wis., then embracing all of Oconto County. He was taken to Green Bay, but was discharged from want of jurisdiction or some other cause. The difficulty was afterward compromised by the owners of the mill agreeing to put in a lock and slide, which. however, proved to be of no practical benefit. It is said that one JEROME was connected with Dr. HALL in buying into the FARNSWORTH & BRUSH Mill, and that afterward the latter parties became dissatisfied, and
the entire interest was purchased by HALL & JEROME. Afterward, JEROME sold his interest to a man named SPAIDS, who sold it to Zenas COBB, of Chicago. COBB sold to Dr. HALL about the year 1847, who continued to run the mill until 1851, when, becoming pecuniarily embarrassed, his creditors took the mill in charge and sawed the logs for their own use. The property finally went into the hands of GARDNER & BAKER, creditors of HALL, who sold it to ELSWORTH, SHEPARD & DOUGLAS in 1853; they becoming involved, assigned it to LUDINGTON & Fawes. This mill was burned in 1856, the dam afterward went out, and the buildings along the shore gradually went to decay, and now there is nothing left of the old works. The location is known and will long continue to be known as "Dr. HALL's Mill," or the "Old Water Mill." The Menominee River Manufacturing Company have since rebuilt a dam there on the same location, but the pond is only used to aid in booming and dividing logs in connection with their other dams.
I forgo to state that Henry BENTLEY, now living at Marinette, was interested in the BRUSH & FARNSWORTH Mill. He first came to Menominee in 1847, but soon went away again, and returned in 1849. He is a son-in- LAW of Dr. HALL. He bought an interest in the mill, fixed it up, and ran it until 1854, when it was abandoned and suffered to go to decay. The next mill built in this county was on the Big Cedar River two miles up from its entrance into Green Bay, at the present town of Cedarville. This was also the water mill, and built by HACKBONE & BOYDEN in 1854. Joel S. FISK, of Green Bay, Wis. (now of Fort Howard), bought HACKBONE's interest in it, and afterward sold it to Samuel HAMILTON aud Sylvester LYNN in 1854 or 1855. HAMILTON & LYNN, thinking they could not make lumber fast enough by water power, built a steam mill at the mouth of the river, and suffered the water mill to go to decay, and nothing is now left of it except a few ruins. LYNN parted with his interest to BOYDEN & SPINNER, who afterward sold it to James MCCAFFREY, who failed, and the mill passed into the hands of the Marine Bank of Chicago (J. Y. SCAMMON & Co.). It was conveyed to J. M. UNDERWOOD, of Chicago, who in 1862 put S. P. SAXTON in charge of it. He remained there and ran the mill until the fall of 1864, when he removed to Menominee. UNDERWOOD sold to Jesse SPALDING and Robert Law, of Chicago, in 1862 who fitted it up and ran it at a profit. LAW sold his interest to H. H. PORTER about the year 1864. Finally the mill came by purchase into the hands of LEMOYNE, HUBBARD & WOOD, who, during the present year sold the mill back to SPALDING, and the mill is now doing a good business. It has a sawing capacity of 12,000,000 feet, board measure, per year, and may, by pressing, cut more than that amount.
The next mill built on the Menominee River was commenced in 1856 by a corporation called the New York Lumber Company. This mill was situated on the main shore of the river at Menekaune, on the Wisconsin side, and it is said $80,000 were expended on it before a board was sawed. Whether such was the fact or not, the company was not successful in the prosecution of its business, and was forced into an assignment for the benefit of creditors about the year 1858. The mill was then run by HOSMER & FOWLER (Col. Roger FOWLER), and Hiram FOWLER acted as their agent until about the year 1860, when Charles WELLS and Henry WELLS, of Pennsylvania, bought the property. In 1861, Henry WELLS sold his interest to Jesse SPAULDING, of Chicago, who, with the able assistance of Augustus C. Brown, who had charge of the business at the mill, succeeding, in fully establishing, the credit of the institution, and notwithstanding two burn-outs, it has netted the owners a large amount of money. About the year 1865, H. H. PORTER, of Chicago, bought an interest in the mill, and was of material benefit in bringing the business to a full head of prosperity. The property was incorporated in 1872 under the name of the Menominee River Lumber Company. Hon. Philetus SAWYER, late member of Congress from Wisconsin, and who has for many years been prominently interested in lumber matters at Oshkosh, is now a large stockholder and President of the company, representing the Charles WELLS interest, which was purchased by Mr. PORTER and sold by him to Mr. SAWYER. The company now owns between eighty and ninety thousand acres of land, containing a large amount of pine. A majority of these lands are in Menominee County, and consequently the interests of the company are identified with our own, although their mill is situated on the Wisconsin side of the river. But while the first proprietors suffered from pecuniary embarrassment, the later owners have experienced severe losses from other causes. In 1869, the first mill was burned with all its contents, proving, a total loss. The owner, Messrs. SPAULDING and PORTER, immediately commenced preparations for building a new and much better mill on the island or middle ground lying in the river in front of where the old mill stood. The new mill got in full operation the next year, but the great fire in October, 1871, which raged through Menekaunee like a tornado, swept not only all the village away but the wind carrying the fire across the channel to the island, in a few moments the new mill was in ruins. Nothing discouraged, the owners immediately commenced again, and by the next year had up and running a new mill on the same spot occupied by the last. As before stated, the company was incorporated in 1872 with the following officers: W. D. HOUGHTELING, President; H. WILLISTON, Secretary sad Treasurer; O. R. HOUGHTELING, Jesse SPALDING, H. H. PORTER, O. R. JOHNSON, F. B. STOCKBRIDGE, Directors. The only change since that time has been the retirement of Mr HOUGHTELING and Mr. PORTER and the election of Mr. SAWYER. The amount sawed in 1875 was 17,000,000 feet of lumber, 1,878,000 pieces of lath and 169, 500 pickets, and no work was done after the 1st of October. The mill is averaging now about one hundred and sixty thousand feet, running daytimes only. The amount of logs cut last winter for this season's sawing scaled 19,000,000 feet board measure, and the company has contracted to cut 5,000,000 for outside parties besides. Daniel CORRY, who came to this river in 1847, and Michael CORRY, who came in 1855, have been connected with the mill, and the latter gentleman is the present efficient Superintendent, with J. F. HANCOCK as book-keeper.
During the years 1856 and 1857, N. LUDINGTON & Co. commenced erecting a mill at Marinette, on what was than called Mission Point, and it is still running where it started up in 1857. The owners of the mill at that time were Nelson LUDINGTON, of Chicago, Harrison LUDINGTON (now Governor of Wisconsin), and Daniel WELLS, Jr., of Milwaukee. In May, 1858, Isaac STEPHENSON bought out Harrison LUDINGTON's one-fourth interest, and afterward Anthony O. VANSCHAICK's one-eighth interest, the latter gentleman having in 1863 bought of N. LUDINGTON one-eighth of the property. The name was then as now the N. LUDINGTON Company, although the mill was usually called the Isaac STEPHENSON Mill. This company has been one of the most fortunate on the Menominee River. It has never met with severe disaster, either by fire or flood; with ample pecuniary resources, it has always prospered through good and bad pg 484
times alike. It was incorporated February, 1868. The first officers were N. LUDINGTON, President; A. C. BROWN, Vice President; E. B. Rice, Secretary. At the present time, the officers are N. LUDINGTON, President; Isaac STEPHENSON, Vice President; E. Dennison, Secretary. The company owns 83,600 acres of land, situated in this and Oconto County. It also owns a water mill on the Escanaba River, four miles from the village of Escanaba, in Delta County, and is one of the strongest mill companies in the Northwest.
Hon. Isaac STEPHENSON was for many years the active manager of the company, and had entire charge of its affairs, but afterward he became general superintendent of a large lumbering concern at Peshtigo, and for several years Augustus C. BROWN, who had bought an interest in the property, had charge of it; at the present time, Caleb WILLIAMS has the charge. Nelson LUDINGTON has always resided in Chicago, and has had charge of the business at that end of the route, and all the lumber made is shipped there. The amount of lumber sawed during the year 1875 was 16,800,000 feet, board measure. Amount of logs cut last winter for the present year's stock, 18,200,000 feet.
The next mill built was what is called the old KIRBY-CARPENTER Company's mill, which was also commenced in 1858, and got into condition to saw lumber in 1857. This mill was built by Abner KIRBY, of Milwaukee, and is built on what was then a sand bar in the river opposite Menominee Village. The sand bar was built up with slabs and sawdust until now it is an island with good dockage along it In the year 1859, Samuel M. STEPHENSON, who came to Menominee for the first time in 1859, became a partner in the company, and took full charge of the business at the mill.
In 1861, Augustus A. CARPENTER, and soon afterward, William O. CARPENTER, came into partnership. On the 29th day of April, 1872, the company was incorporated under the name of the KIRBY-CARPENTER Company.
The first officers of the corporation were Augustus A. CARPENTER, President; S. M. STEPHENSON, Vice President; S. P. GIBBS, Secretary. There has been no change since, except that Mr. STEPHENSON now holds both the last mentioned offices.
In 1867, the company built a new mill a little farther down the river, which has a sawing capacity of 125,000 feet per day. This company owns 107,000 acres of land mostly covered with pine except where it has been cut off. It also owns a propeller, the Favorite, commanded by Capt. Thomas HUTCHINSON, which tows to Chicago three barges, carrying about one million two hundred thousand feet of lumber each trip, while the remaining three barges which belong to the line are at the mills loading. The final amount sawed at these two mills each year is about thirty five million feet. The stock of logs for this year's cut for these mills is 216,040 logs, amounting to 40,434,199 feet board measure, all of which it is expected will be sawed before the close of navigation. The amount cut last year (1875) was 170,997 logs, amounting to 30,417,096 of lumber, board measure; also 8,103,100 lath and 456,600 pickets, or a daily average during the sawing season of 367,572 feet of lumber and 52,465 lath; this being the cut of the two mills. The company who keep a store in connection with the mills and for general trade, the business of which for 1875 amounted to $113,197.04. This is one of the strongest companies on the river, and has prosecuted its business with great success and very little loss.
William HOLMES came here with S. M. STEPHENSON in 1856, and since 1859 has been in some capacity connected with this company. He has nearly all the time had full charge of the logging and general outside business He was Supervisor of the town of Menominee one year.
William SOMERVILLE, who came in 1868, has been the general book-keeper at Menominee, having charge of all cash and general accounts.
Peter A. VANBERGEN, who has had chief control of all matters relating to the machinery of the mills, came here in 1867. He was also County Clerk and Register of Deeds of this county for the years 1873 and 1874, but the work in the office was chiefly done by his deputy, Joseph FLESHIEM, and clerks.
Roland HARRIS came in 1859, and has been with this company ever since, usually acting as head SAWYER.
In 1858, Anson BANGS built a small mill on Little River, a branch of the Menominee, about five miles from the village of Menominee. This was a water mill, and was soon abandoned. John BREEN, who came to the Menominee in 1849, was the millWRIGHT, and ran it one season, which was about all that it ever did run. ln 1870, the property fell into the hands of the writer, who, with Timothy COLE, repaired it and put in machinery, and made a first glass shingle mill of it, with one saw for lumber. It went by the name of T. COLE & Co.'s mill, and run during the winter and spring following, but owing to the dry season in that summer was shut down, and in the fall (1871), with all its accompanying buildings, was burned in the great fire.
In the year 1857, William E. BAGLEY and William G. BOSWELL built a shingle mill on the shore of Green Bay, not far from where the KIRBY-CARPENTER Company's store now stands. In 1858, Henry NASON and John O. BOSWELL bought the mill. In April of 1861, a remarkable shove of ice on Green Bay occurred, which extended south from a point between the QUIMBY, House and the KIRBY-CARPENTER store to South Point; the ice was piled on the shore from thirty to forty feet high. NASON had a small dwelling house near the mill, and his family were eating breakfast when the ice moved; almost the first warning they had was when the ice had piled on top of the mill, and was coming down upon the house. The mill was totally wrecked and the house crushed in. Ice was found there where sand from the beach had blown over it on the next 4th of July. Notwithstanding this reverse of fortune, NASON was determined that he would have a shingle mill, and in the fall of 1861 commenced building one on a little Island in the Menominee River, between Thibault Island and the Michigan shore, where the railroad crosses the river. The mill was started up in 1862 but it seems that fate had decreed against his running a mill, for in July of the same year, while the men were at dinner, the mill caught fire and burned down.
In the summer of 1860, Simon STRAUSS, who had previously been engaged in the dry goods, groceries and fur trade at Menominee, built the mill now known as the JONES Mill on the shore of Green Bay, near the KIRBY House, and got the same into running order during the next year, but it did not prove a success. He ran it for two years, and, finding that he was losing money, he closed it. Afterward, William MCCARTNEY bought and ran it for a season, then sold out to John L. BUELL, who expended a large amount of money in putting in new machinery and other improvements. He, too, failed to make a success of it. It has since passed through several hands - R. STEPHENSON & Co., at one time owning a half interest and running it, Clinton B. Fay and Charles H. JONES running it at another time, until it finally came into the hands of David H. Jones & Co., pg. 485
who went into bankruptcy, and for the last two years the mill has been unused.
The LUDINGTON, WELLS & VANSCHAICK Company's mill in Menominee was first built in 1863. The copartnership was formed of Daniel WELLS, Harrison LUDINGTON (now Governor of Wisconsin), Isaac STEPHENSON and Robert STEPHENSON. The mill was known here as the R. STEPHENSON & Co.'s Mill. They built what was then called the best mill on the river; it was a steam mill. On the 14th day of June, 1864, the mill was burned, proving a total loss. In fifty-four working days from that time, they had up a new and better mill, fully equipped and ready to run. The millWRIGHT who had charge of the construction of it was William E. BAGLEY, who for many years has been considered one of the most skillful millWRIGHTs in the country, and has had charge of the construction of several of the mills built in this section. In 1866, Isaac STEPHENSON conveyed his interest in the company to Anthony G. VANSCHAICK. The company was incorporated July 1, 1874; the first officers of the company were Harrison LUDINGTON, President; Daniel WELLS, Vice President; Anthony G. VANSCHAICK, Secretary and Treasurer, and Robert STEPHENSON, Superintendent. The officers at present are the same. In 1871, the company bought what was known as the GILMORE Mill, on the point where the Menominee River enters the bay. A short time afterward, and almost before they got into possession, it was burned in the great fire of 1871. Soon after the fire, the company began the construction of another and much better mill, and had it completed in 1873. They have not at all times had both mills running, as the money panic of 1873 affected their interest in reducing the profit of manufacture. The sawing capacity of both mills is 35,000,000 feet per year. The last mentioned mill has a capacity of 22,000,000 feet and the other 13,000,000. The mill on the point during the sawing season of 1875 sawed 21,984,792 feet of lumber, 4,058,940 lath and 153,450 pickets. The amount of logs cut last winter for the present year's stock is 29,458,163 feet, board measure. The company keeps a store in connection with the mill for the sale of dry goods, groceries and provisions. The gross amount of their sales for 1875 was $62,207.95. The company is a very strong one, and owns 75,000 acres of land in Menominee County and Oconto County, Wis.
In the fall of 1866, the Ingallston Mill, in the township of Ingallston, was built by Charles B. INGALLS and myself. In the winter of 1867-68, I bargained my interest in it to Charles B. INGALLS, who operated it for a season and then bargained it to BARNARD & WYLEY, who failed to keep their bargain. Afterward, it was run by CARTER & Jones, and finally by Jesse L. HAMILTON, who was operating it on a contract with C. B. INGALLS, when it was burned in the spring of 1874. In 1867, the Fred CARNEY Mill in Marinette, Wis., was built by Daniel WELLS, Jr., of Milwaukee, Andrew STEPHENSON, of Menominee, and Louis GRAM, of Marinette. Andrew STEPHENSON and GRAM afterward sold their interest to Fred CARNEY and Henry WITBECK The company was incorporated in 1870 by the name of the Henry WITBECK Company. The first officers were Daniel WELLS, Jr., President; Henry WITBECK, Vice President; John WITBECK, Secretary; Frederick CARNEY, Superintendent. The present officers are the same. The amount of lumber sawed in 1875 was 15,500,000 feet, 8,600,000 lath and 300,000 pickets. The stock of logs cut logs winter for the present year was 17,500,000 feet. The company owns 53,000 acres of land.
In the year 1866, William MCCARTNEY build a mill on the same side of the river, below CARNEY's mill. It was used mostly for a shingle mill. It was burned in the great fire October 8, 1871. The same fall he commenced another, which was completed the next summer, and is now in operation. In 1870-71, William E. BAGLEY and Daniel CORRY built on the high bank, not far from MCCARTNEY's mill, a very large planing, door and sash mill. They had only used it a short time when it was destroyed by the same great fire.
Another small mill was built by George HAWTHORN at the village of Menekaunee as early as 1860 or 1861 for a shingle mill. The building or what was left of it was also burned in the fire of 1871.
In 1866, the HAMILTON & MERRYMAN Company built their mill in the town of Marinette, Wis. This is also a large and strong company. This company was incorporated in 1872. The first officers were I. K. HAMILTON, President and Treasurer; A. C. MERRYMAN, Secretary and Superintendent. The officers are now the same, with W. C. HAMILTON, Vice President. The amount of lumber sawed in 1875 was 12,700,000 feet; lath, 3,008,000; pickets, 120,000; shingles, 5,000,000. Amount of logs cut last winter for this year's stock is 15,000,000 feet board measure. The company owns 50,000 acres of land, situated in Menominee County and Oconto County, Wis. They also own a shingle mill, which was built since the erection of their main mill.
A planing, door and sash mill was built on a small island in Marinette, where the bridge crosses the river, by William GODDARD and others.
D. C. PRESCOTT first established his machine shop and foundry at the same place in connection with it. It was afterward burned. PRESCOTT rebuilt his shops on a much larger scale on the high banks in the village of Marinette, where they now are. The planing mill was rebuilt in the same place, and again burned and again rebuilt.
In 1874, LEMOYNE, HUBBARD & WOOD, who had bought the Cedar River Mill property, built a small mill at SPALDING, a station on the Chicago & North-Western Railroad, forty-two miles north of Menominee Village.
In the fall of 1872, Mellen SMITH built a shingle mill on the bay shore in the town of Ingallston, abont three-fourths of a mile from the Ingallston Mill. He has since moved it back about two miles, and sends all his shingles to market by railroad. In 1874, S. L. BENJAMIN built a shingle mill by the side of the railroad, eighteen miles north from the village of Menominee, which has been in operation since that time.
John W. WELLS commenced the construction of a lumber and shingle mill in the fall of 1875, which is now completed and running. It is situated on the bay shore, north of the smelting furnace.
Other mills may also be mentioned in this connection:
In 1872, William E. BAGLEY and Egbert M. COPP built a planing, sash and door mill on the bank of the bayou, near the A. F.. LYONS place, north side of Ogden avenue, and carried on business until 1874. That year they built another planing mill between Main street and the shore. Owing to the money panic of 1874, that mill was run only one season. Subsequently, the machinery of both mills was moved to Stevens Point
THE GREAT WOODS FIRE
The summer of 1871 was very dry; no rain fell after June until in October. The streams were nearly dried up; the swamps were entirely dry, and where in the latter water could usually be found on the surface, it became necessary dig many feet to find it. Almost all the swamps were pg. 486
filled with peat. The ground in the woods was covered many inches in depth with dead leaves and other decaying vegetable substances, which had become dry as tinder; many fires had broken out, which had not extended over a great area of country, and as similar fires had occurred in 1864 no apprehensions were felt of any serious calamity. On the evening of October 8, the fires started up afresh a few miles north of the village of Oconto, Wis. The wind from the southwest freshened, driving the fires in this direction, and by night had become a tornado. The fires spread as the wind arose until they united and had acquired a breadth of from ten to twelve miles, and raged along through the Peshtigo sugar bushes, in which were farming settlements, and over the farms leaving only charred ruins and ashes and dead bodies of human beings and animals, reaching the village of Peshtigo about 8 o'clock in the evening. By 9 o'clock that village was in ashes, and hundred of men, women and children, who at dark of that day were unconscious of danger, and were in the enjoyment of happy life, were in eternity, and nothing remained but their charred bodies or ashes.
By 9:30 the fire had reached the Menominee River above and below the village of Marinette; fortunately for that village and the survivors, it had divided about two miles before reaching it; on the east it swept through the village of Menekaunee, blotting it out of existence, and crossing the river as its mouth burned the GILMORE Mill on the Menominee side.
On the west it crossed the Menominee River above the rapids, sweeping along until it struck the bay shore about one mile north of the village of Menominee, burning a path ten miles, wide for about sixteen miles north of Menominee. It also crossed the river at the mill of the LUDINGTON, WELLS & VANSCHAICK Company, and passed up the flat through the village. The flat was then a swamp covered with grass with but few buildings on it, and with streets on each side. By almost superman effort, the fire was prevented from spreading to the buildings on either side. The next morning, parties started out in various directions to bring in the wounded and burned; hospitals were established, and before night nearly all were brought in. The second day parties went out to search for and bury the dead. The telegraph line was destroyed, so that word could not be sent to Green Bay City, and the next day after the fire it was thought necessary to keep out steamboats to take away the people in case the fire should revive and burn the villages of Menominee and Marinette. The night of the 9th, the steamers left and carried the fearful news to Green Bay City, and returned the next day freighted with provisions and necessaries for the burnt sufferers, which were collected by the people there in a few hours. From Green Bay the telegraph quickly conveyed the sorrowful news in all directions, and it was not long before food and clothing were coming from all parts of the country. The fire in its course swept over an area of forty miles in length by ten in width in about four hours, and it is estimated that about one thousand two hundred persons perished in it.
The actual number burned to death in Menominee County was twenty-eight, but many were burned or otherwise injured so that they have since died. The space allowed me will not admit of my mentioning the many acts of self-sacrificing generously witnessed here.