Posts Tagged ‘1845’

Dreadful Loss of Life and Limb

September 15, 2009
Sandy Hook Lighthouse (Image from

Sandy Hook Lighthouse (Image from


Dreadful loss of Life and Limb.

It is a long time since our city (New York) has been visited with so horrible a disaster, as the one which we, as public journalists, find it our painful duty now to chronicle. The accident occurred at the black and white smith shop of Edward Duvall, No. 102 Charlton street.

Link to map with Sandy Hook Lighthouse (bottom left of map)

It appears that Mr. Duvall, a young man in the prime of his life, being about 33 years old, has been doing a considerable work for the light house at Sandy Hook; and while engaged in the performance of it, he employed the fishermen resident in the neighborhood, to collect the cannon balls and bomb shells which are frequently found buried in the sand, or rolled up in the surf, which he agreed to purchase as old iron. During yesterday, a load of the above articles were brought to Mr. Duvall’s shop, and on examination, the latter found that some of the shells were yet loaded, and before taking them into the house, he proceeded to empty them of the composition. This was about five o’clock in the afternoon. Mr. Duvall, proceeding to empty the shells, took one, said to be of the shape of an egg, about 24 inches long, upon his lap, sitting on a seat which he procured on the side walk, and with a stick loosened the composition, which he shook upon the walk between his feet. While thus engaged, the shell which was made of cast iron, exploded with a tremendous force killing Mr. Duvall and two others instantly, and severely wounding several others.

— Mr. Duvall’s arms were both entirely blown off, his right leg was taken off at the knee, a horrible hole was blown through his abdomen, and his whole body was more or less injured. He never breathed after the explosion. He lived in the upper part of the house wherein was his shop, and has left a wife and one child to mourn his loss, as also a large circle of beloved friends.

Image from

Rockaway Wagon (Image from

Mr. A.O.Price, builder, of No. 79 Thompson street, aged about 39 years, and who is now engaged in building the Grace Church’s new house of worship in Broadway, was passing shortly before the accident, in a one horse Rockaway wagon, on his way to the North river, where he was expecting a cargo of stone from Sing-Sing, and loosing a linchpin from his wagon, stopped at Mr. Duvall’s; and while the wagon was being repaired, he was engaged in conversation with the unfortunate proprietor when the explosion took place.

— He received a blow on the back of his head from a piece of the shell, breaking in the entire back of his skull, causing instant death. When found, he laid on the sidewalk, with his hands in his pockets, entirely lifeless. His horse, a valuable one, was standing in the front of the door, and a piece of the shell struck him on the side of his head, taking it entirely off; the same fraction of the shell passed across the street, took a large piece out of the eave gutter of the house, and glancing off the shingled peak, fell at some distance beyond. Mr. Price has left a wife and two children to mourn the untimely end of the husband and father.

Richard Broderick, a lad of 17 years of age, residing at the corner of King and Hudson streets, was passing at the same time, with a young associate by the name of Bennett, and stopped a moment, picked up some of the composition, and as he started from the scene, was arrested by death; being instantly killed by a piece of the shell, which struck him on the right side of the neck, just on the edge of the cheek, making a wound of about two inches in diameter, severing the jugular vein, killing him almost instantly. His clothes were much burned, and his body dreadfully mangled.

Robert Bennett, step son of Abraham Moses, No. 280 Hudson street, was in company with Broderick, and was thrown into the air several feet, falling in such a manner as to severely cut his lip. Both his legs are broken above the knee, and dreadfully mangled, so that one must be amputated; the other may be saved. If mortification does not set in, his life may be saved. He is perfectly conscious, and has been so all the time since the disaster. These are all that we can hear of with any degree of certainty. It is said that a cartman, who was passing at the time, had an arm blown off, and another young man was much injured. The report of the explosion was heard at the distance of eight squares. The glass in the windows on both sides of the street, is more or less broken from Hudson street to the river. A piece of the iron weighing about 2 pounds, is said to have fallen at the corner of Varick and Carmine streets; another piece weighing about ten pounds, flew towards the river, and entering the office of George Leland, pork and provission packer, corner of Washington and Charlton Streets, knocked a decanter out of the hands of a cartman named Travis, who was standing in the office with several others, without injury to any individual. — Journal of Commerce.

Google Map of the area

The Victims of the Explosion. — The remains of three of the ill-fated victims of the accident of Monday, Aaron O. Price, Edward Duvall and Robert H. Bennet, were interred yesterday afternoon with appropriate ceremonies. Richard J. Broderick, the other person who was killed, was buried the previous day.

The body of Mr. Price was temporarily deposited in the marble cemetery at the corner of Second street and Second avenue, until it can be removed to the family burying ground in Eastchester. His remains were attended to the grave by the New York Tent of Rechabites, New York Lodge No. 10, Washington Lodge No. 12, Mount Sinai Encampment No. 3, and the R.W. Grand Lodge of the I.O. of O.F., a large number of friends and the workmen in the employ of the deceased, the whole forming a very imposing procession. The ceremonies at the burial place were conducted by P.G.M. Wilson Small, who officiated as chaplain for the occasion.

The Lady of Duvall was attended to the grave by Tompkins Lodge No. 9, and Meridian Lodge No. 42, I.O. of O.F., and a large concourse of his neighbors and friends.

N.Y. Com. Adv. March 27th.

Wisconsin Argus (Madison, Wisconsin) Apr 22, 1845

Laboring Poetry

September 7, 2009

Poetry for Labor Day:

Image from Life Magazine

Song of the Factory Girl.


Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
So merry and glad and free!
The bloom on her cheeks, of health how it speaks,
Oh a happy creature is she!
She tends the loom, she watches the spindle,
And cheerfully toileth away —
Mid the din of wheels, how her bright eyes kindle,
And her bosom is ever gay!

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
Who hath breathed our mountain air,
She toils for her home and the joys to come
To the loved ones gathered there!
She tends the loom, she watches the spindle,
And she fancies her mother near —
How glows her heart, and her bright eyes kindle
As she thinks of her sister dear.

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
Who no titled lord doth own,
Who with treasures more rare, is more free from care,
Than a Queen upon her throne!
She tends the loom, she watches the spindle,
And she parts her glossy hair,
I know by her smile, as her bright eyes kindle,
That a cheerful spirit is there!

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
Whose task is easy and light —
She toileth away till the evening gray,
And her sleep is sweet and light —
She tends the loom, she watches the spindle,
And, oh, she is honest and free —
I know by her laugh, as her bright eyes kindle,
That few are more happy than she!

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
As she walks her spacious hall,
And trims the rose and the orange that blows,
In the window, scenting all.
She tends the loom and watches the spindle,
And she skips in the bracing air —
I know by her eyes, as their bright lights kindle,
That a queenly heart is there!

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
Link not her name with the SLAVE’S;
She is brave and free, as the old elm tree
Which over her  homestead waves.
She tends the loom, she watches the spindle,
And scorns the laugh and the sneer,
I know by her lip, as her bright eyes kindle,
That a FREE-BORN spirit is here!

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
Whose fabric doth clothe the world,
From the king and his peers to the jolly tars
With our flag o’er all seas unfurl’d,
From China’s gold seas, to the tainted breeze
Which sweeps the smokened rooms
Where “God save the Queen,” to cry are seen,
The slaves of the British looms.

Oh sing me the song of the Factory Girl!
The honest and fair and true —
Whose name has rung, whose deeds been sung,
O’er the land and waters blue.
She tends the loom, and watches the spindle,
And her words are cheerful and gay —
Oh, give me her smile, as her bright eyes kindle,
And she toils and sings away!

God bless our Yankee Factory Girls!
The girls of our mountain wild!
Like a merry hind, shall their song be heard,
Where’er sweet Labor has smiled.
From our forests green, where the axe hath been,
And the waters dance in the sun —
Through New England’s clime, to the thunder chime
Of the surging Oregon! —

[Asylum Gazette.]

Huron Reflector (Norwalk, Ohio) Jun 2, 1846

Image from



Under a spreading chesnut tree
The village smithy stands;
The smith, a mighty man is he,
With large and sinewy hands;
And the muscles of his brawny arms
Are strong as iron bands.

His hair is crisp, and black and long;
His face is like the tan;
His brow is wet with honest sweat;
He earns whate’er he can,
And looks the whole world in the face,
For he owes not any man.

Week in, week out, from morn till night
You can hear his bellows blow;
You can hear him swing his heavy sledge
With measured beat and slow,
Like a sexton ringing the village bell,
When the evening sun is low.

And children coming home from school
Look in at the open door;
They love to see the flaming forge,
And hear the bellows roar,
And catch the burning sparks that fly
Like chaff from a threshing floor.

He goes on Sunday to the church,
And sets among his boys;
He hears the parson pray and preach,
He hears his daughter’s voice,
Singing in the village choir,
And it makes his heart rejoice.

It sounds to him like his Mother’s voice,
Singing in Paradise!
He needs must thinks of her once more,
How in the grave she lies;
And with his hard rough hand he wipes
A tear from out his eyes.

Toiling — rejoicing — sorrowing —
Onward through life he goes;
Each morning sees some task begin,
Each evening sees it close;
Something attempted — something done —
Has earned a night’s repose.

Thanks, thanks to thee, my worthy friend,
For the lesson thou hast taught;
Thus at the flaming forge of Life
Our fortunes must be wrought;
Thus on its sounding anvil shaped
Each burning Deed and Thought.

Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania) Jun 21, 1847

A "Begrimed" Engineer

Image and Cobeen family history can be found HERE.


Ah! who ever thinks of the bold engineer,
As he stands by his throttle of steel,
And spurs on his steed to its maddened career,
In its thundering and ponderous reel,
Like a soldier begrimed in battle’s dark strife,
And brave to the cannon’s hot breath.
He, too, plunges on with his long train of life,
Unmindful of danger or death!
Through the daylight,
Into the night,
Dark, dark.
He knows no affright,
O’er ridges
And bridges,
Decayed or strong,
Like a mystic God he rushed along!
Who thinks of the bold engineer?

So true to his post like a statue he stands,
With his eyes fixed fast on afar;
Our own precious lives he holds in his hands,
Our wealth we give to his care;
For good must he be, the bold engineer,
As he dashes from village to town,
And brings us all safe, ‘midst a smile or a tear,
To the forms so dearly our own!
Onward he goes,
His whistle he blows —
Deep, deep,
Through hight-drifted snows;
With crossings
And tossings,
In heat and in rain,
O’er the glitterings track he pulls the long train!
All hail to the bold engineer.

I love the brave man, though accidents come,
With their heart-rending anguish and woe;
Still foremost he rides, to whatever doom,
Like the form on a vessel’s bold prow.
And as he sweeps on like the wind through the land,
Away from “sweet home” and its charm,
For the sake of the “loved ones” and wife, may Thy hand,
Oh God, protect him from harm!
On doth he ride,
No dangers betide,
Swift, swift!
With bridesgroom and bride —
The tallest,
The smallest,
The rich and the poor,
All follow his path, o’er river and moor —
Long life to the bold engineer!

The Fitchburg Sentinel (Fitchburg, Mass.) Aug 13, 1870Image from /sitehistory.html

From the American Farmer


Of all pursuits by men invented,
The ploughman is the best contented,
His calling’s good, his profits high,
And on his labors all rely –Mechanics all by him are fed,
Of him the merchants seek their bread;
His hands give meat to every thing,
Up from the beggar to the king.The milk and honey, corn and wheat,
Are by his labors made complete.
Our clothes from him must first arise,
To deck the fop or dress the wise –We then by vote may justly state,
The ploughman ranks among the great;
More independent than them all,
That dwell upon this earthly ball.

All hail, ye farmers, young and old!
Push on your plough with courage bold;
Your wealth arises from your clod,
Your independence from your God.If then the plough supports the nation,
And men of rank in every station,
Let kings to farmers make a bow,
And every man procure a plough.

Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, Pennsylvania) Aug 17, 1825Image from


Amid the flames he stood,
And the white smoke formed his wreath,
And the swelling waves of the fiery flood
Came surging from beneath.

The crackling timbers reeled,
And the brands came gleaming down,
Like the scattered wealth that the forest yields
When their autumn leaves are brown.

The tempest howled in wrath,
And the fire wheeled madly on, —
And the embers far on the wind’s wild path,
Through the murky night, had gone.

Yet there, in his pride, he stood,
With a steady hand and strong;
And his axe came down on the burning wood,
Till the heart of the old oak rung.

There was many an earnest eye
Through the rolling smoke that gazed,
While he stood with his dauntless soul & high,
Where the hottest fire-brands blazed.

And prayers were faltered forth
From the aged and the young,
For the safety of many a household hearth
On the strokes of his strong arm hung.

There was many a proud knight there,
With his mantle round him rolled,
That aloof, in the light of that sweeping fire,
Stood shivering in the cold.

And oft, from the fireman’s bands,
A summons for aid was heard;
But never the tips of their well-gloved hands
From their ermined cloaks were stirred.

And no white and fervent lip
For their welfare or safety prayed;
For no children’s weal and mother’s hope
In the strength of their arms was stayed.

Were I searching earth’s mingled throng
For shelter, my claim would be
A hand, like that FIREMAN’s, nerved & strong,
And a fearless heart for me.

Ohio Repository, The (Canton, Ohio) May 8, 1845Image from


From the Knickerbocker.

Song of Labor: The Miner.


The eastern sky is blushing red,
The distant hill-top glowing;
The brook is murmuring in its bed,
In idle frolics flowing;
‘Tis time the pickaxe and the spade
And iron “tom” were ringing;
And with ourselves, the mountain stream
A song of labor singing.

The mountain air is cool and fresh;
Unclouded skies been o’er us;
Broad placers, rich in hidden gold,
Lie temptingly before us
Then lightly ply the pick and spade
With sinews strong and lusty;
A golden “pile” is quickly made,
Wherever claims are “dusty.

“We ask no magic Midas’ wand,
Nor wizard-rod divining;
The pickaxe, spade and brawny hand
Are sorcerers in mining;
We toil for hard and yellow gold,
No bogus bank notes taking;
The bank, we trust, though growing old,
Will better pay by breaking.

There is no manlier life than ours,
A life amid the mountains,
Where from the hillsides, rich in gold,
Are willing sparkling fountains:
A mighty army of the hills,
Like some strong giant labors
To gather spoil by earnest toil,
And not by robbing neighbors!

When labor closes with the day,
To simple fare returning,
We gather in a merry group
Around the camp-fires burning;
The mountains sod our couch at night,
The stars shine bright above us;
We think of home, and fall asleep
To dream of those who love us.

Mountain Democrat, The (Placerville, California) May 13, 1854