History of the city of Dayton and Montgomery County, Ohio

VOLUME I

An ancient writer said, "The gods have made every land dear to those who inhabit it." Of more value than the rocks and the rivers, the soils and the ores, are the people with their achievements and institutions. These, as they stand related to us, furnish an object for our love and loyalty. Civic pride is not only honorable to those who cherish it, but it is indispensable as a factor of progress and a security against decline.

In order to love wisely and well our country or city it is necessary that we know and understand the same. We must be acquainted with the past that we may rightly value our heritage, and we must be acquainted with the present if we would lay the foundations for a larger and better future.

It is a fatal error for us, in our mock modesty or soul deadness, to assume indifference or superiority to what is personal and local. Said Daniel Webster, "Those who do not look upon themselves as a link connecting the past with the future do not perform their duty to the world."

The study of the past events of our city will not only discover to us the laws and forces which, largely unconscious to the immediate actors, were making the city what it has now become, but will enable those who are now at the head of affairs consciously and surely to apply the same to the common weal. The infancy of our city has^ been guarded and guided by unseen forces, but its maturity must more and more be characterized by conscious plans and purposed effort.

But it may be said, "Granting all that can be claimed as to the interest and importance of local history, what need is there of another history of Dayton at the present time?"

The last distinct and full history appeared in 1889, twenty years ago. In these twenty years the population of Dayton has doubled. Previously existing interests and institutions have become enlarged and diversified, and thriving accessions have been made. For example, in 1889 The National Cash Register Company employed but two hundred and twenty operatives instead of the present office and factory force of five thousand, and in the history named the account of this great institution was confined to a single page. "Early Dayton," written by Miss Steele in 1896, disclaimed being a complete history. The preface declared, "Early Dayton" is written from the personal and social standpoint, and it was not the intention to give a complete and consecutive account of the growth of the corporation and the business interests of the city." Only early actors were depicted through sketches. The histories named, and histories and sketches written before and since these appeared, will always have an interest and value of their own, such as only the person who wrote them and the circumstances in which they were written could supply.

The present work, however, covers the entire period of the city's history, using all available sources. It is the definite aim to cover completely and proportionately the various interests and features in the life and growth of the city down to the present time. Some of the features receiving special attention are antecedent history, the direct founding, pioneer life, municipal organization and development, industrial and commercial development, political and military history, .the schools the churches and Christian associations, social organizations, public and charitable institutions, the learned professions, the press, sketches of prominent citizens, connections with the world at large as underlying past and future growth. Tables and summaries are included for ready reference. b
A little over a century has witnessed the growth of Dayton from a faint and precarious beginning to a beautiful and prosperous city of more than one hundred and twenty-five thousand inhabitants, drawing its support from all quarters of the world, and sending out its products, both intellectual and material, to every part of our land and to the remotest parts of the earth. The loved and honored Dayton of the past will give place only to the greater and nobler Dayton of the future.

What has been said of the city of Dayton is largely true of the county of Montgomery, of which it is the chief city and the seat of government. In many respects it is difficult to separate the two. The interrelations are most intimate. The population of the city has constantly been recruited from the county. The prosperity of the city has been greatly promoted by the splendid country and substantial people surrounding it. Commercially and socially, in art and in religion, reciprocal bonds have held the two in closest union. Every political incident emphasizes the unity existing. Mutual interest and helpfulness have generally prevailed, and should be more and more promoted. The different parts of the county as represented by townships, cities and villages, receive attention in this history. There is much also that belongs to the county as a whole that demands and rewards our considerate attention.

The only complete history of Montgomery county heretofore existing is that which appeared in 1882 nearly a generation ago.

The first of the two volumes comprising the present history is directly and exclusively historical, while the second is biographical and has been prepared by writers specially assigned.

The publishers have performed a generous part in providing full and suitable illustrations and in bringing out the entire work in the highest form of the "art preservative."

 

Table of Contents

PART FIRST.

PRELIMINARY HISTORY.

CHAPTER I.
THE PERIOD BEFORE AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE. 11

CHAPTER II.
THE NORTHWEST UNDER THE AMERICAN FLAG. 25

PART SECOND.

THE CITY OF DAYTON.

CHAPTER I.
THE FOUNDING OF THE DAYTON COMMUNITY. 67

CHAPTER II.
THE FOUNDING CONTINUED, 1803 TO 1810. 99

CHAPTER III.
PERIOD FROM 1810 TO 1830. 127

CHAPTER IV.
PERIOD FROM 1830 TO 1860. 147

CHAPTER V.
PERIOD FROM 1860 TO 1880. 171

CHAPTER VI.
PERIOD FROM 1880 TO 1909. 177

CHAPTER VII.
PLATS EXTENSIONS. 215

CHAPTER VIII.
MEDICAL IfEN AND MEDICAL INSTITUTIONS. 243

CHAPTER IX.
THE CHURCHES. 281

CHAPTER X.
CHRISTIAN ASSOCIATIONS. 367


CHAPTER XI. THE PRESS. 397

CHAPTER XII.
SCHOOLS. 419

CHAPTER XIII.
PUBLIC LIBRARIES. 471

CHAPTER XIV.
MUSIC, ART, CLUBS, SOCIETIES. 483

CHAPTER XV.
MUNICIPAL HISTORY AND PUBLIC SERVICE. 503

CHAPTER XVI.
COMMERCE. 537

CHAPTER XVII.
TRANSPORTATION. 563

CHAPTER XVIII.
PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS. 581

CHAPTER XIX.
MANUFACTURES. 609

PART THIRD.

MONTGOMERY COUNTY.

CHAPTER I.
GEOLOGY OF MONTGOMERY COUNTY.
GEOLOGY SOIL. 673

CHAPTER II.
OUR PREDECESSORS. 685

CHAPTER III.
ORGANIZATION AND HISTORY OF MONTGOMERY COUNTY. 691

CHAPTER IV.
MILITARY HISTORY OF MONTGOMERY COUNTY. 715

CHAPTER V.
NATIONAL MILITARY HOME. 749

CHAPTER VI.
THE BENCH AND BAR OF DAYTON AND MONTGOMERY COUNTY. 771

CHAPTER VII.
COUNTY INSTITUTIONS. 801

CHAPTER VIII.
TOWNSHIP HISTORIES 821

 

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The relative disappearance of the Indians from a continent together with the crowding of the land by a people of European stock at once raises the question of comparative numbers and strength. Just back of this question rise the questions, as to the rights to the soil, methods of displacement, and the responsibilities involved.

A few years ago it was customary to fix the number of Indians very high, possibly because the scope for imagination was so unrestricted, or because of the desire to set in strong light the energy or iniquity of the white man. Later there came a tendency greatly to reduce the estimate. Probably a conservative estimate for the number of Indians within the present territory of the United States, not including Alaska, at the time when Columbus discovered the New World would be a half million. In the same territory there are now about half that number.