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Michigan

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BERRIEN COUNTY
by Henry Bishop When we first arrived on the town plat, we found two Indian wigwams at the foot of what afterwards became Whitaker avenue. When the village plat had been surveyed and staked off, the Indians removed their wigwams outside of the village limits, and never after intruded on what they realized were the white man's rights. When we reflect on the sudden manner that they were compelled to leave a favorite resort of a lifetime, where, from an opening of the matting composing the covering of their wigwam they shot the wild duck, and by gill-net across the river caught the finest of fish, and where musk-rat abounded in great numbers, and in the surrounding forest deer and wild game were plenty, we can seem to realize the bitter disappointment it must have been to them to be thus suddenly deprived of this, to them, so desirable a locality. The town for some time remained attached to Niles. Fortunately the first inhabitants were peaceably disposed, and we found no use for township officers until we became an organized township in A. D. 1836. The first criminal arrested by the newly elected officers was a young man traveling through the county, and paying expenses with counterfeit money. He was examined before a J. P., found guilty, and committed to the county jail at Berrien for trial. The officer who was selected to take him to Berrien allowed the prisoner to mount a fine blooded mare of his own, while he himself mounted a sorry looking old horse. A number of the citizens had congregated in front of the Goodrich Hotel to see them off. The prisoner, when ready for a start, turned to the assembled citizens, raised his hat, thanked them for their attention, said he had seen all he wished of New Buffalo, put spurs to his horse and started on the run, with the officer in hot pursuit, but only making about one mile to the prisoner's three.

Michigan Counties


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