Page images


turesque region. It was on the banks From Kinderhook Academy Mr. of the same stream, by the way, that Eddy went to Union College at Schethe homestead and woolen mills of nectady, where he entered the junior Herman Knickerbocker were located. class, and from which he was graduIt was here at Schaghticoke that the ated in 1834. Union College was at Congressman Knickerbocker of Piesi- that time in a most flourishing condident Madison's time, entertained tion, with the Rev. Dr. Eliphalet Nott Washington Irving and dispensed his at its head, and the graduating class generous hospitality to such an ex- with hich Mr. Eddy left the institutent that he became known as the tion, numbered more than two hun"Prince of Schaghticoke."

dred young men, among whom he Grafton Mountains lift themselves stood high as a student and scholar. up from the valleys adjoining this Soon after his graduation he began stream and back of them may be seen, reading law with Stephen Ross of far away, the Green Mountains of Troy, completing his studies with Vermont. It was in this grandly beau- Marcus T. Reynolds of Albany, New tiful region, of unrivaled scenic attrac- York. After being admitted to the tions that Devotion Carnot

bar he began practicing in Troy, bewas born, December 23, 1812, Pitts- came the representative, as attorney, town being the place of his birth. of various important interests, and His parents being people of culture within a comparatively short time, and education his early advantages had a large business in the law and were of a somewhat superior char- chancery courts of the State. Profes. acter. His mother died, however, sional business brought him later on when he was eleven years old and to Chicago, and being impressed with his father four years later, leaving its advantages and prospects he lohim an orphan at fifteen years of age. cated here, although for several

He attended for a time the academy years thereafter he was compelled to at Lansingburgh - of which Alex- spend a considerable portion of his ander McCall, at a later date editor of time in the east, looking after affairs the Troy Whig, was then the princi- in which he had become interested. pal — and afterwards pursued his Subsequent to his removal to Chi. studies at the famous Kinderhook cago, he became interested in various Academy which attracted students commercial enterprises and devoted from all parts of the eastern and but a portion of his time to the pracsouthern states. It was here that Mar- tice of law. He was one of the early tin Van Buren studied law with Judge dealers in bar iron and heavy hardWm. P. Van Ness, and here he lived ware, and later engaged in the bankin his beautiful home Oakenwald, af- ing and brokerage business, accumuter his retirement from public life. lating a comfortable fortune and retiring from active business before resident of Chicago, and he has been reaching an advanced age.

more widely known as one of the In the days of free banking and sterling, upright and successful busiwild cat currency, Mr. Eddy was ness men of the city, than as a member called upon to wind up the affairs of of the legal profession, he has neverThe Bank of Chicago, in which his theless proven himself a well-read and brother, also a Chicago pioneer, had thoroughly well-informed lawyer become largely interested through whenever occasion demanded it. representations made to him as to the A gentleman of education and culstability of the institution and the ture he has all his life been interested profits of its business. This bank is- actively in whatever movements were sued currency in addition to doing a set on foot to improve social condigeneral banking business, and when tions and to promote the progress Mr. Eddy took charge of it as con- and advancement of the city which servator, appointed by a court of has so long been his home. Although competent jurisdiction, he found its he is at the present time in his sevenaffairs in a badly tangled condition. ty-ninth year, his memory of the Although much apprehension 'had stirring events through which he has been felt by depositors and bill hold- passed is unclouded, and from the ers as to the safety of their interests, rich store-house of his knowledge, is Mr. Eddy succeeded by skillful finan- poured out from time to time many ciering in redeeming all out-standing entertaining reminiscences of what obligations in the way of currency, happened in the earlier history of and paying depositors in full, saving Chicago.

1843, he married thereby the good name and credit of Isabella Campbell, of Schenectady, the institution. A Democrat in poli- New York—who died in 1887-and tics, he has at varicus times been the has living four daughters, two of candidate of his party for legislative whom are married, An only son and other honors, and only the fact grew' 10 manhood and died that his party has been largely in the after entering the medical profesminority has kept him out of impor- sion in which he had every prospect tant official positions. While his busi- of achieving distinction. ness interests have monopolized his

HOWARD L. CONARD. attention largely since he became a




years old.


READING an account of the death professional business a short time of Judge James H. Matheny, of since, and, after I had transacted my Springfield, Illinois, in September business, I took a stroll along the last, 1890, recalls to my mind a won- levee, and, as I did, I came across derful speech I heard him make at a some slave pens, where an auctioneer most critical and interesting period had been selling some human chatin the history of our country. It was tels, and, in one of these pens, I saw on the 2d or 3d of July, 1860, at a a slave mother and her little girl, small hamlet known as Virginia, I nearly white, about eight or nine think in Mason county, Illinois, where

Mother and child were the writer happened to be on busi- crying bitterly, and while I was con

A large concourse of people templating the scene, a big white had gathered there to hear this then ruffian, a perfect Legree, came along young and eloquent lawyer, who was and halted in front of this particular to give his reasons for supporting pen,and said to the little heart-broken Mr. Lincoln rather than Judge Doug slave, come with me!' He was her las for president. Mr. Matheny com new master,while another had bought menced by telling his hearers that the mother — whereupon the child he, as well as Mr. Lincoln, had al- cried more bitterly than ever, and by ways been a Whig, but that he had way of asserting his newly acquired refused to follow Mr. Lincoln into authority over his human property, the new party, simply because he had he hit her across the mouth with the up to a recent date always held that back of his hand, so that the blood the Southern people had as good a spurted out from her lips. This was right, not only to their property in too much for me,” said the speaker, slaves, but also had the same right “I stood almost paralyzed with rage to take them into the new Territories and indignation at this exhibition of of the United States, as the Northern a slave driver's brutality. My first people had to take their horses and impulse was to make an attempt to cattle into these Territories. Said protect the poor little creature against he: “I want to tell you, my friends, the brutality of her inhuman master, how and why I was led to change my but then I remembered that I was in views on

so important a matter. I a slave State, and would render myhad occasion to visit St. Louis on self liable under the Fugitive Slave -aw and perhaps be arrested as an than a political gathering. On my Abolitionist. “My God!' I said to return to Springfield next day, I callnyself, “is this the institution that I ed on Mr. Lincoln and told him of have been all these years defending and Mr. Matheny's great speech and how naking apologies for?' I then and it had affected the great mass of .here made a vow before heaven and people who heard it. Mr. Lincoln in the presence of this poor

slave seemed greatly interested over my re.nother and her slave child, that from cital of the interesting events and inthenceforth no effort of mine that I cidents of his friend's efforts, and could lawfully make should be spar- showed not a little emotion when told ed to destroy this thrice accursed in- of the deep sympathy the people stitution.”

manifested in the poor slave mother Turning to the thousands before and her child. As I took my leave him, the speaker said: "I am here of him, he asked me what I thought to-day, my friends, to carry out my now of the prospect of electing our vow, made in the presence of that ticket? That is the way he put the little white slave girl and her poor question. I replied that I had not mother-I am here to say to you that changed my mind in regard to his I have done with defending slavery, election since my first interview with I am here to ask you to vote with me him in December of the previous for Honest Abe Lincoln, who is the year.

I met him I think once more friend of the poor, whether white or alive. I am not able to say to what black-will you do it?" An affirma. extent Mr. Matheny took part in that tive shout rang through the beautiful ever memorable campaign, but this I locust grove, where the meeting was can say, I never heard a more telling being held, from thousands of throats, and effective political speech in all and hundreds of men and women my

life either before or since then. gave vent to their emotion in tears It was masterly, logical and truly and audible sobs. Indeed, it was eloquent. John W. HARMAN. more like a Methodist prayer meeting Brooklyn, N. Y., March, 1891.



[It seems almost essential that there should Mr. Harman replied that he did appear in connection with the above, an ac

not, but would be glad to make his count of several interviews held by Mr. Har

acquaintance. “Come on," said the man with Abraham Lincoln, one of which is referred to in the above and which appeared

Major, "and I'll introduce you." in a recent issue of the New York Times. When they were going down stairs, -Editor.]

a messenger overtook them and told In December, 1859, Mr. John W. Stuart that he was wanted immediateHarman, who was then, as now, a ly at the United States court room. merchant in this city, was in Spring- He accordingly turned his guest over field, Illinois, where he had legal to Mr. Brown, his son-in-law, who led business with his attorney, Major the way to Lincoln's office. When Stuart, Abraham Lincoln's relative they entered, Mr. Harman's first and friend. Stuart was an old-line vision was of that long, gaunt man, Whig, and did not agree politically who sat with his back toward the with Mr. Lincoln nor with Mr. Har door, a pair of long legs curled up man, who was in full accord with the beneath the deal table at which he newly formed Republican party.

was at work.

An old rag carpet cov. One day, when business was ered the floor, and upon it lay the Mr. Harman turned to Stuart and mud that countless friends and clients said, with the emphasis of a deep had carried in. When the two had conviction: “Major, the next Presi. passed to the front of the table and dent of the United States is a resi- Mr. Lincoln had looked up, Mr. Brown dent of your city!"

said: “Mr. Lincoln, here is a friend “ Who is he?"

of yours from New York, Mr. Harman, 6. Abraham Lincoln.”

who would like to make your perOh, no,” declared the Major. sonal acquaintance." “ That can never be. Lincoln's views Lincoln arose, and extended his on the slavery question are altogether hand, “I must beg your pardon for too advanced and pronounced."

the intrusion,” said his caller, “as I Then he added:

know have no business here, and came only Lincoln ?"

through curiosity. I have been told


“ Do you

« PreviousContinue »