A portion of the town of Newburgh was laid out in 1817 by John Sprinkle and called Sprinklesburgh.
This little embryo city extended from Monroe Street down the river bank nearly to the present western limits of the town and all the territory lying within the following named boundaries: North by Pigeon; South by the Ohio River; East by Monroe Street and west by the present western limits. For several years this village was called Mount Prospect though it was recorded under the title of "Sprinklesburgh". In 1818 Jacob Keel paid two dollars and was granted a license
to establish a ferry across the Ohio river from a point where Mr. Union Bethell mill is near the foot of Monroe Street, And in the license is recorded the name "Mount Prospect" is given to the town. A few years subsequently Abner Luce purchased a tract of land lying east of what is now State Street and running north to an east and west section of the line which included all that portion of the town known as Gray's Enlargement had a town laid out and called it Newburgh This left a small triangular or irregular shaped piece of ground, Containing about three acres lying between Sprinklesburgh and Newburgh which one belonged to Mr Short. In 1837 by a special act of the Legislature the towns of Sprinklesburgh and Newburgh including this flat-iron shaped piece of ground, were consolidated and called Newburgh. Since this consolidation there have been numerous additions
and enlargements to the town, and the village that in 1830 contained a population of 37 souls, now contains more than 2000 and has 4 printing office;6 dry goods stores ;17 grocery stores 4 crockery stores; 2 hardware store; 3 drug stores; 4 large flouring mills
2 extensive saw mills; 1 brewery; 1 shingle factory; 2 plow factories; 2 wagon manufactories; 1 tannery; 6 boot and shoe manufactories; 3 saddle and harness establishments;2 tin and sheet iron manufactories;
4 millenery shops; 1 large tobacco stemery: 2 establishments for the
manufacture of furniture; 2 stone cutters and 1 brick yard. There are
also three preachers in the town with five large convenient church
edifices; 3 lawyers;5 physicians and a large
number of men who dilgently pursue the different branches of mechanical industry and many of the arts.
The church buildings belong to the following denominations of Christians: The Methodist Episcopal, Cumberland Presbyterian, German Luthern, German Methodist and Catholic. There are four school district houses, all in brick in which free schools are kept up to six months a year. Besides these Delaney Academy, for instruction in the higher branches of education, in a large and commodiuos brick building, occupying a beautiful site in the suburbs of the town has been in a flourishing condition. It is for a time suspended. There is also constructed under the free school system, a large
three story brick house in which not only the rudiments but the higher branches a taught. Notwithstanding all these facilities for the education
of the youth of the town and vicinity, Prof H. B. Durgin maintains nine months each year, a large and florishing select school, in which are taught all the minor and higher branches, embracing the languages and science. Under the supervision of a committee of gentlemen there is also a first class music school maintained ten months in the year. Young pupils in this school are also taught the rudiments of a general
education. The new school edifice erected under the direction and superiatendence of the township trustee Dr W W Slaughter is a ornament to the town and reflects great credit upon all connected with its construction.
After 1820, up to 1824 when the country land became a little more
thickly settled and some of the dense forests made to disappear by the
sturdy hand of the pioneer, society became more genial and the
conveniences for enjoying it more numerous Religious worship, education
and politics received more attention, and there was a general mingling
of good feeling and sociability. The people all seemed to be governed by
a correct scase of right and we believe there was never a "Vigilance
Committee" organized in the county, or mob violence resorted to right a
wrong in any case.
But notwithstanding this rascalty and wrong doings of individuals were met and rebuked in a manner that terrified the aggression and warned them of their danger if they persisted in such conduct, and it was seldom one was detected in the perptration of an act of rascality the second time.
As illustrative of the view in which such conduct was held by the better class, as well as to show how justice was dispensed by some of the minor tribunals, the following anecdote is given:
A man named Rice residing in one of the extremes of the county before it was reduced to its present territorial limits, lost a cow one spring. She had strayed away or was stolen. About midsummer Rice took a ride over the country in search of her, and accosting a friend in his travels concerning the object of his search, and describing it to him, he was told that a man named Bond, living some eight miles distant
had just such a cow in his enclosure. Rice soon found this to be the fact and demanded the animal of Bond, but Bond swore he bought the cow early in the spring and would not give her up Rice then consulted an attorney in regard to the matter.
The attorney told him to go to a justice of the peace, procure a writ of replevin and try the right to the property. Accordingly Rice proceeded to the office of Justice Shane and did as directed by his attorney. Now Esq'r Shane was physically a very large fleshy man weighing about two hundred
pounds, avordupois and withal rather lymphatic in his temperament. He was somewhat illiterate but extremely tenacious of his honor and was egotistical enough to believe that he could mete out "equal and exact justice" to all parties litigant who submitted their differences to him for adjustment. In due time the Constable returned the writ and the trial came on. It was no difficult for the plaintiff to make out a case. He proved beyond the cavil the cow was his and the Court rendered a decision accordingly. The defendant was ordered to surrender the property, pay costs & c. It is proper to state just here that after the cow left Rice's possession and before the suit was brought she had given birth to a calf. As soon as Justice Shane announced his decision he commenced entering a judgement on his docket. While thus engaged Bond complacently remarked to a friendly bystander, in hearing of Justice Shane: "Well there was nothing said on the trial about a calf, and I'll be-----if I give it up "Esq'r Sane upon hearing this rebellious remark, coolly dropped his pen arose from his seat and deliberately walking up to Bond, fastened the iron grip of his left hand upon his throat, and shaking the the fist of his right, in a very threatening manner, under his nose told him "give up the calf or he would choke h--l out of him" The frightened Bond very quickly but rather incoherently replied: "I will!". And this ended the controversy.
From 1824 up to 1861, the commencement of the civil war the
advancements in agriculture, commerce, manufactures and the mechanic
arts were reasonably rapid and permanent. Extensive farms were cleared
up and cultivated; county and other roads were established and improved;
mills. shops, churches and school houses were erected; the imports of
goods and the exports of corn, hay and tobacco and other products were
increased to an extent that would seem extravagant, and the people
became rich and prosperous. When it was announced that the course of the
Wabash and Erie Canal would pass thru the county
a new impetus was given to industry and the greatest anticipation in regard to future wealth were indulged in; but though work was prosecuted to completion, and for many years was employed as a great commercial throughfare, yet the people along its course did not realize the advantages from it that they had hoped for. For a few years after its completion it afforded the only means of transportation, direct from Evansville northward; but it soon had to give way to the swifter and more convenient facilities of railroads, and as a means of transportation on its southern end, it was abandoned. The farmers always found a ready, convenient and profitable market for
their surplus productions in Evansville or the river
towns along the southern border of their own county, and at no time, even during the great financial revulsions of 1837 and other years, did the people seemed to depair or flag in their efforts
to make them prosperous and eventually to place Warrick in her destined rank amid the foremost Counties of this great state.
A the time of the breaking out of the war, in 1861 of
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