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_ „' OF
PHELPS AND GORHAM'S PURCHASE,
MONROE, ONTARIO, LIVINOJ^ 01$ YATES, STEUBEN,
TO WHICH IS ADDED, A SUPPLEMENT, OR EXTENSION OF THE PIONEER HISTORY OP
SOME ACCOUNT OF FRENCH AND ENGLISH DOMINION—BORDER WARS OF TOE RETOLl'-
TION INDIAN COUNCILS AND LAND CESSIONS—THE TROQEESS OF SETTLEMENT
WESTWARD FROM THE yALLET OF THE MOHAWK—EARLY DIFFICUL-
SENECAS—WITH "A GLANCE AT THE IROQUOIS."
BY 0. TURNER,;
[AUTHOR OF THE "HISTORY OF THE HOLLAND PURCHASE."]
Entered according to act of Congress, in the year 1851, by Wm. Allino, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the Northern District of New York.
PHELPS AND GORHAM'S PURCHASE,
THIS WORK IS RESPECTFULLY HEBICATED:—
To the first, — as a feeble tribute, a moiety of what is their due, for the physical and moral triumphs they have won through long early years of toil, privation and endurance. In view of the brief space allotted to mad by an All Wise Providence, as an average existence—(no more than thirty fleeting years constituting a generation) — you live to be the witnesses of more than it is often given to man to see. The wilderness you entered in your youths — some of you in middle age — you have lived to see not only "blossom as the rose," but to bear its matured and ripened fruit. Where you have followed the trails of your immediate predecessors — the Seneca Iroquois —or your own woods paths, are Canals, Rail Roads and Telegraphs. A long line of internal navigation — an artificial River — bearing upon its bosom the products of your own subdued, teeming soil, and continuous fleets, laden with the products of an Empire, that has sprung up around the borders of our Western Lakes—winds along through vallies that you have seen but the abode of wild beasts; from whose depths you have heard in your log cabins, the terrific howl of the famishing wolf! Aqueducts, structures that the architects of the old world might take for models, span the streams you have often forded, and over which you have helped to throw primitive log bridges. And upon these Lakes, whose commerce you have seen to consist of a few batteaux, lazily coasting along near shore, putting into bays and inlets, whenever the elements were disturbed — are fleets of sail vessels, and "floating palaces," propelled by a mighty agent, whose powers were but little known when you began to wield the axe in the forests of the Genesee country. A subtle agent was occasionally flashing in the dark forests, indicating its power by scathing and levelling its tall trees; then but partially subdued to man's use; now tamed, harnessed, controlled; traversing those wires, and bringing the extremes of this extended Union to hold converse with each other with the "rapidity of thought,"—more than realizing the boasts of the spirit of the poet's imagination, who would
. u Put a girdle 'round the Earth lu thirty minute*!"
Villages, cities, institutions of religion and learning, are upon sites where you have seen the dark shades of the forest rest with a profound stillness, that you could hardly have expected to see disturbed by the hand of improvement. But more than all this, you have lived to see an extended region of wilderness converted into fruitful fields; a landscape every where interspersed with comfortable, often luxurious, farm buildings; surrounded by all the evidences of substantial, unsurpassed prosperity. Who else that have planted colonies, founded settlements, have lived to see such consummations? Peaceful, bloodless, and yet glorious! The conquerous upon battle fields have been destroyers; you, creators; they, have made fields desolate; you, have clothed them with smiling promise and full fruition. They, have brought mourning; you, rejoicing. Theirs' was the physical courage of a day, perhaps of a fortunate hour; yours, was the higher and nobler attribute — the moral courage — the spirit of endurance and perseverance, that held out through long years of suffering and privation; that looked dangers and difficulties in the face, till they became familiar associates. In the retrospect of well-spent lives — in view of the consummation of the great work of civilization and improvement, you have helped to commence and carry on — now that the shades of evening are gathering around you—now that you are admonished that your work upon earth is done — well may you say: — " Now Lord lettest thou thy servant depart in peace."
To the second, — as the inheritors of a rich legacy, the fruits of the achievments, of the long years of enterprise, toil, fortitude and perseverance, of those Pioneer Fathers; the conservators of their memories. Honors, title, stars and garters, such as kings may bestow, are baubles compared with what they have bequeathed! Far most of them breaking out from their quiet New England homes, in youth, and strength, went first to the battle field, where it was the strong against the weak, the oppressor against the oppressed, and helped to win a glorious national inheritance; then, after a short respite, came to this primitive region, and won a local inheritance for you, fair an d fertile, as rich in all the elements of prosperity and happiness, as any that the sun of Heaven shines upon! Guard the trust in a spirit of gratitude; cherish the memories of the Pioneers; imitate their stern virtues; preserve and carry on the work they have so well begun!
And both will accept this tribute, from the son of a Pioneer — one "who was to the manor born,"— who has essayed to snatch from fading memories, gather from imperfect records, and preserve these local Reminiscences; — and who, most of all regrets, that in the execution of the task, he has not been able to recognize more of the names and the deeds of the Founders Of SettleMents in The Genesee Country. The Author.
15 COMMEMORATION OF THE FIRST SETTLEMENT OF WESTERN NEW-YORK. *
High was the homage Senates paid
And freely, at their feet were laid,
Proud History exhausted thought,
While Phidian hands the marble wrought
But our undaunted Pioneers
In scattering the night of years,
And victors are they nobler far
Who rolled their chariots of war,
Earth groaned beneath their mail-clad men,
And wildly rose, from hill and glen,
Purveyors of the carrion bird
Blood streamed from their uplifted hands,
Passed on their desolating hordes
Then tell me not of heroes fled —
While widowed ones and orphans bled,
The sons of our New England Sires,
Far from the hospitable fires,
The storm they met with bosoms bared,
The wild beast from his cavern scared,