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the East Brady "Index," in one of which he relates more at length than Mr. Smucker has done, the affair in question. Mr. Bell quotes from Sherman Day's Historical Collections. Day, in his turn, if I am not mistaken, for I have not his books by me, copies his account from "The Apalachian," a newspaper published forty-five years ago in Blairsville, Pa. The article in "The Apalachian" was written by the late R. B. McCabe, Esq., of Blairsville, in his time a well-known lawyer, editor, and writer. I here copy from Mr. Bell's paper:
"The incursions of the Indians had become so frequent and their outrages so alarming, that it was thought advisable to retaliate upon them the injuries of war, and carry into the country occupied by them, the same system of destructive warfare with which they had visited the settlements. For this purpose an adequate force was provided under the immediate command of General Broadhead, the command of the advance guard of which was confided to Capt. Samuel Brady.
"The troops proceeded up the Allegheny River, and had arrived at the flat of land near the mouth of Red Bank Creek, now known by the name of Brady's Bend, without encountering an enemy. Brady and his rangers some distance in front of the main body, as their duty required, when they suddenly discovered a war party of Indians approaching them.
Relying on the strength of the main body, and its ability to force the Indians to retreat, and anticipating that when driven back they would return upon the same route they had advanced on, Brady permitted them to proceed without hindrance, and hastened to seize a narrow pass higher up the river, where the rocks, nearly perpendicular, approached the river, and where a few determined men might successfully combat superior numbers. In a short time the Indians encountered the main body under Broadhead, and were driven back. In full and swift retreat, they pressed to gain the pass between the rocks and the river, but it was occupied by their daring and relentless foe, Brady and his rangers, who failed not to pour into their flying columns a most destructive fire. The Indians were broken, routed, and forced to jump into the river. Many were killed on the bank, and many more in the stream. Cornplanter, chief of the Senecas, then a young man, saved himself by swimming, as did several others of his party."
This is but one of the adventures of Captain Brady in this part of the country, and which have perpetuated his name among us. I should not have thought it necessary to enlarge upon Mr. Smucker's excellent sketch, except as it gave me opportunity to correct what I think are two very serious T. J. CHAPMAN. Pittsburg, Pa., July 14, 1891.
THE PUBLIC RECORD REPOSITORY ERECTED ON THE ROLLS
Upon the deserted site formerly known as the Rolls estate, lying between Chancery lane and Fetter lane, there has been erected in London within the last thirty years a magnificent building called, in official parlance, "The Public Record Repository."
It contains the greatest collection of state papers and official documents relating to English and American history that exists anywhere in the world. The building itself is of the most substantial character, strong as a fortress, and as gloomy as the tower. It took years to build it, and is a marvel of convenience and safety.
It is the great mausoleum of past generations, and to it the Englishspeaking race must always go to explain the sources of its history and its greatness.
Mr. Ewald in his introduction to "Stories from the State Papers" tells curious tales of neglect and indifference relating to the preservation of these public documents.
Scattered about in damp cellars, tied up in rotten bags, lodged near explosive materials, freely attacked by starving rats on a foraging expedition, it is as much a matter for wonder as for congratulation that these
archives have survived the dangers and persecutions to which they were formerly subjected.
In the early days of England's history the records of the courts were preserved in the palace of the king, but when the law courts became stationary and were held within the precincts of the royal palace, instead of following the sovereign from place to place, all the legal documents remained in the custody of their respective courts.
On the business of the country increasing, the records began to assume such vast proportions that further accommodations had to be obtained. Gradually three warehouses for the custody of the public documents came into existence. The records of the king's bench and common pleas were removed to the palace at Westminster, to the old Chapter house, and to the cloister of the abbey of Westminster, and thus laid the foundation of the well-known "Chapter House Repository." Toward the end of the reign of Richard I. the Court of Chancery becoming separated from that of the Exchequer, the wardrobe in the tower of London was used as the chief place of deposit for all chancery records. and thus the "Record Office in the
Tower" sprang up. It had been the custom of the earlier masters of the rolls to keep the records of their courts in their private houses, but after the reign of Edward IV. these documents were lodged in what is now styled "The Chapel of the Rolls," but which was then known as the Domus Conversorum Judærum, or the house for converted Jews and infidels, which had been annexed to the office of the master of the rolls in the reign of Edward III.; an office was subsequently attached to chapel and thus arose the record depository known as the" Rolls Chapel Office."
For many years these three places of deposit the Chapter house, the Tower of London, and the Rollsconstituted the chief repositories for all public records, but as the accommodation that these public buildings offered was limited, rooms in private houses, vacant vaults, and even stables had to be taken by the ministers of the day for the storing of the ever-increasing archives.
always appear to have arisen at that identical moment and the subject was shelved. In 1567 Queen Elizabeth was informed of the confused and perilous state of the records of her parliament and chancery, and orders were given for rooms to be prepared in the Tower for the reception of these parchments, her majesty declaring that “it was not meet that the records of her chancery, which were accounted as a principal member of the treasure belonging to herself, and to her crown and realm, should remain in private houses and places for doubt of such danger or spoil as theretofore had happened to the like records in the time of Richard II. and Henry VI." This order was never executed, and the records continued to be lodged in their ill-kept dens.
Little care was, however, paid to the preservation of the nation's parchments. They were put into houses and forgotten; their various removals were most carelessly superintended, and they were often left a prey to the pilferings of the curious. Here and there a sovereign or a secretary of state turned his attention to the disgraceful condition in which the monuments of the kingdom were preserved and a sweeping reform was nounced, but more important matters
On the accession of Charles II., William Prynne, the victim of land and the star chamber, was the keeper of the records in the Tower and he implored the merry monarch "to preserve these ancient records not only from fire and sword, but water, moths, canker, dust, cobwebs, for your own and your kingdom's honor and service, they being such sacred reliques, such peerless jewels, that your noble ancestors have estimated no places so fit to preserve them in as consecrated chapels, or royal treasuries and wardrobes where they lay up their sacred crowns, jewels, robes; and that upon very good grounds, they being the principal evidences by which they held, supported, and defended their
crowns, kingdoms, revenues, prerogatives, and their subjects, their respective lands, lives, liberties, properties, franchises, rights and laws." Prynne made a thorough inspection of the immense mass of matter in his charge, undertook to sort them, dust and clean them, but received very little encouragement, and those he employed grew weary of the task and finally refused to do anything further, as they said the dust endangered their eyseight and would destroy their health. He commenced to index them, but in despair said "To complete this task will require Briareus, his hundred hands, Argus, his hundred eyes, and Nestor's centuries of years to marshal them into distinct files and make exact alphabetical tables of the several things, names, and places comprised in them."
These complaints continued from year to year and age to age Parliament was petitioned, but it was not until this century that anything what ever was accomplished, and then after long years of waiting and wearisome delays.
To the ordinary Englishman what signified it that his country possessed records of the court of chancery from the time of King John, without intermission, to the last decree made by the lord chancellor; that she owned ledger books of the natio al expenditure, which chancellors of the exchequer had regulated, unrivaled even for their very external magnificence and complete as a series since the days of
Henry II.; that among her diplomatic treasures she had the treaty, with the very chirograph, between Henry I. and Robert, earl of Flanders, the privilege of Pope Adrian to Henry II. to conquer Ireland, the treaties with Robert Bruce, and the veritable treaty of the Cloth of Gold, illuminated with the portrait of Francis I. and adorned by the gold seal chased by Benvenuto Cellini himself? What signified it that his country owned that most perfect survey in its way, though compiled eight centuries ago, called Doomsday book, or records like the Pipe, Close, and Patent rolls, with the splendid series of Fines? What to the ordinary Englishman was this magnificent collection but so many musty old parchments? Yet to the few, the antiquarian and historical few, who knew the extent and value of these public documents, they looked upon it as a national disgrace that monuments so important and so priceless should be housed in a manner in which no merchant of ordinary prudence would keep his vulgar books of account.
We have said "housed," but how housed? In the tower of London were the chancery and admirality records; one-half of these documents were placed in the Wakefield tower, contiguous to a steam engine in daily. operation, while the other half were crammed into the White tower, beneath which were stored tons of gunpowder, sufficient to destroy all Tower hill and change even the course of the
Thames if an explosion had happened. The records of the queen's remembrances were deposited in sheds in the king's mews, Charing Cross, where they adhered to the damp walls or fell into fragments from sheer putrefaction.
The venerable Doomsday book, the most priceless record in Europe, was preserved in the Chapter house of Westminster Abbey, behind which were a brew-house and a wash-house, reported as dangerous and endangering the safety of the Chapter house by fire. Other documents were in Chancery lane, some in the Rolls house, some in a temporary shed in the Rolls gardens, some in the Temple, and some lodged in New square, Lincoln's Inn, and many of them perished in the fire of 1849.
rooms and apartments, connected by fire-proof corridors, with iron cages and boxes to hold the manuscripts, with iron cases for books, and slate shelving, so that it is impossible for any conflagration to destroy the building if some of its contents should be consumed. The force of clerks and experts employed is very large, and notwithstanding the work of investigation has been going on for years, new discoveries are constantly being made, and in the light of this vast store of information the old histories are becoming almost obsolete and will have to be in many respects rewritten. The handwriting of the older documents is cramped, indistinct, sometimes unintelligible, very trying to the eyesight, and as it is curious Latin or quaint Norman French puzzles the best scholarship. The legal documents abound in the most redundant words and quaint phraseology, and require great familiarity with the history of the period in order to comprehend them.
But the public conscience at length became aroused and finally all the documents, records, papers, and correspondence of officials, extending through hundreds of years, during peace and war, amounting in the aggregate, according to Mr. Hardy, one of the superintendents, to hundreds of millions in all, have been collected together and, housed under one great fire-proof roof, have been partially catalogued, indexed, and their contents calendared, and are now accessible to the public and to everybody from all parts of the earth under certain rules, regulations, and restrictions. There is but very little wood used about the building, and the interior is divided up into convenient
The amount of ancient lore here locked up is beyond conception, but we were highly gratified when examining in a dazed manner some of these old documents to have at our elbow experts who could read and translate almost anything with the same facility that we could use our native tongue.
Those employed here seem to have a genuine love for their work, and it with pride that one who had grown gray in the business said "Re