Archive for January 15th, 2009

Patsey: Woman, Mother, Slave

January 15, 2009

A PROLIFIC NEGRO FAMILY.— The Memphis Avalanche has discovered a most prolific and certainly well-branched family. Such a family wouldn’t take much time to stock all the plantations of the South with “hands.”

The head of this family is now living in Chickasaw county, Mississippi, on the plantation of Colonel Duncan Hubbard, and is now considerably over one hundred years of age. She was a woman and a mother during the war of the revolution. Her name is Patsey.

1860 Slave Schedule

1860 Slave Schedule

It is related of the old woman, that a few Sundays ago, becoming impatient at the slow progress made by some of the younger negroes in hitching up a team which was to convey her to church, some two miles distant from her master’s plantation, she started off on foot at a brisk rate, walking the whole distance, and reaching the church before the others with her.

The number of her descendants is truly astonishing, she having no less than [three hundred and one] living children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and great great grandchildren. A large number of the descendants — perhaps one-third of the whole — have died. Her oldest son, a robust, healthy man, died recently at the age of ninety years, and her oldest living child is over seventy years old. One of her sons, “Uncle Billy,” is the father of sixteen children, and these children have now living eighty descendants. Patsey, the maternal ancestor of all this army of men, women and children, still lives in the enjoyment of a ripe old age, surrounded by every comfort which a kind and indulgent master can bestow, and respected by all who know her, whites as well as blacks.

Newport Daily News (Newport, Rhode Island) Oct 3, 1859

Duncan Hubbard was the son of David Hubbard, a cousin of Samuel Houston. Sometime after 1860, probably during or after the Civil War, Duncan moved to Pointe Coupe Parish, Louisiana, which is where his father died.  There is a PDF file regarding the papers of David Hubbard, which also gives a timeline of David Hubbard’s  life among other things here.

As far as Patsey and her family, I have no idea if they followed Duncan to Louisiana or not, since I can’t find Duncan on the later census records.  There only appear to be a few Hubbard’s (provided they used that surname) who were probably at one time slaves in the Chickasaw Co., MS area and Pointe Coupe Parish, LA in 1870.

Frank Wade: A Dyed in the Wool Criminal

January 15, 2009
Oregon State Penitentiary-Salem

Oregon State Penitentiary-Salem

Frank Wade Must Wait Four Years Before His Next Theft.

J.G. Birdsey, of Jacksonville, sheriff of Jackson county, arrived in the city yesterday evening, after having left an inveterate horse thief at the penitentiary at Salem.

The prisoner, Frank Wade, well illustrates the incorrigible character of criminals in their career, and justifies in great measure the conviction of the officer of the law that these people never reform. They are no sooner out of prison walls that they are at their old tricks again.

“Last spring,” explained Mr. Birdsey “Wade began stealing horses in our country, and after two or three operations was arrested. After he was confined he was examined for insanity, and go off on that dodge, being committed to the asylum. He lost very little time here in filing his way out, and on his way from Salem to Jefferson stole a horse, got caught, and was sent back to the asylum. The latter part of the summer he was discharged as cured and came back to Jackson county. As soon as opportunity offered he forged an order for money, which he got cashed, stole a horse and skipped.”

“Well, he took this horse and crossed over the mountains by way of Klamath and Lake counties, going through the snow, without an overcoat or blanket, over the mountains into California. Upon the conclusion of this exploit he tumbled into the hands of Deputy Sheriff Walker, of Klamath county, near Alturas. There Sheriff Childers turned him over to me at Medford. His indictment soon followed. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced by Judge Webster to four years for the forgery, and the indictment for the theft of the horse still stands against him. He confessed interesting portions of his career to me on the way down.”

Sheriff Birdsey returns home to-day after the convention.

Morning Oregonian (Portland, Oregon) Dec 7, 1889

The “Forty Million Debt” Made Tommy Cry

January 15, 2009
Loco Foco Hardtimes Token

Loco Foco Hardtimes Token

From the Albany Evening Journal.
DISTRESSING SCENE! — The Forty Million Debt! — We have read much in the Argus about the anticipated sufferings to be produced by the ‘Forty Million Debt.’ but was not aware that it had actually created present and alarming distress among the People, until the last Saratoga Whig came to hand, from which it will be seen that an entire Family has been thrown into a state of dreadful suffering on account of the apprehended evils of this horrid ‘Debt!’ — The last intelligence, it will be seen, left this distressed Family in a ‘deluge of tears.’ We shall look anxiously for further particulars in the Argus: —

From the Saratoga Whig.

A ‘CRYING SPELL.’ — A short time since, a young man, son of a disappointed Locofoco office seeker, after listening to a long tirade of abuse against the present State Administration between his father and another rabid Locofoco, who had both that morning been gloating over a late number of the Albany Argus, which was filled with sundry abuses of Governor Seward and the other State officers, and various misrepresentations as to the ‘forty million debt,’ went home, and seating himself on the floor, set up a most dolorous crying, ‘

What is the matter, my dear little Tommy,’ said his mother. The lad made no reply, but continued crying louder than before. ‘Why, bless my soul!’ said the anxious mother, taking Tommy on her knee, ‘something serious ails the child! — Tommy, tell your mother this minute where it aches the hardest.’

‘It don’t ache none,’ replied Tommy.

‘What does ail you, then?’

‘Daddy says the forty million debt is coming, and we shan’t have anything to eat — then I shan’t have no more bread and lasses — boo, boo, boo!’

O lordy, lordy! it’s the forty million debt that ails my child! Them whigs will kill us all, and distress the rest to death, that’s sartin. Boo, boo, boo!’ {The old lady sets in crying.}

At this juncture of affairs the office seeker enters, and inquires the cause of their grief.

‘Why, my dear husband,’ said the old lady, ‘Tommy is afraid the forty million debt will starve us all to death, poor little fellow.’ {Tommy and his mother set up a most lamentable wailing.}

‘Here,’ said the office seeker, ‘may be seen the practical effects of that odious recommendation! When will men see the horrible thing in its proper bearing. I’ve spent most of my time the past six months in trying to show up this distressing thing in its true light — but men won’t mind anything I say; and my property is going to ruin, just on account of this thing. I’m heartily discouraged!’ {Commences crying in company with his wife and child.}

The kitchen maid now enters, and trembling, inquires what has happened.
‘O! do see poor little Tommy,’ said the old lady, ‘it’s the forty million debt what ails him — see how he tumbles about the floor — boo, boo, boo!’

‘It’s bit him! said the maid, ‘and he’s either got the hydrofogia or the dismonitory symptoms, true as the world. Poor Tommy!’ {Maid chimes in with the others, and cries most bitterly.}

Mingo, the ostler, attracted by the groans and sobs, comes running from the barn, and with ‘eyes like bullets,’ inquires ‘wat made sich a debble ob a fuss!’

‘It’s forty million deaths what’s all but killed little Tommy,’ replied the maid.

‘Dem’s the same critters wat bit my heel todder night in de dark, and skare dis chil mos to def! What ail you too, massa, eh?’

‘O Mingo, it’s the cursed Seward debt,’ replied the office seeker.

‘Yes! the Steward’s debt!’ cried the old lady.

‘It’s the Slewed to death,’ sobbed the maid.

‘The Stewed dead!’ yelled Tommy.

‘Gosh amighty! de screwed bed!’ ejaculated Mingo —

Then they all set up a crying O!

Huron Reflector (Norwalk, Ohio) Oct 22, 1839


William H. Seward

From ‘A POLITICAL HISTORY OF NEW YORK’ by DeAlva Stanwood Alexander, page 35 in Vol. II. [emphasis mine]

The chief criticism of his opponents grew out of his acceptance of Ruggles’s estimate that the canals would more than reimburse the cost of their construction and enlargement. The Argus asserted that Seward, instead of sustaining the policy of “pay as you go,” favoured a “forty million debt;” and this became the great campaign cry of the Democrats in two elections. On the other hand, the Whigs maintained that the canals had enriched the people and the State, and that their future prosperity depended upon the enlargeii. 36ment of the Erie canal, so that its capacity would meet the increasing demands of business. In the end, the result showed how prophetically Seward wrote and how wisely Ruggles figured; for, although the Erie canal, in 1862, had cost $52,491,915.74, it had repaid the State with an excess of $42,000,000.