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A SKETCH OF LUCIUS LYON

by GEORGE H. WHITE

Great rejoicing was had over their success by the advocates of a speedy application to congress for admission as a State. Mr. Lyon held this office during 1833, 1834 and 1835, and ably advocated the rights of Michigan to the disputed strip of territory that included Toledo. When he became satisfied that Michigan would not be allowed her rightful boundary, because the administration must have the votes of Ohio, and could only get them by having the boundary established as Ohio demanded, he was active in his endeavors to get Michigan to accept the upper peninsula in the stead of the Toledo strip. His geological knowledge, and his minute inquiries, fully satisfied him that it was not the sterile, valueless region which would be a yearly bill of expense that the opponents to it represented. He did not, however, suspect its true value; to-day its value is fully as great as that of the whole State of Ohio.
I have now before me the famous documents fulminated by Gov. Lucas of Ohio, and our boy Governor, Mason, and the various writings of Mr. Lyon in the matter, and certainly no unbiased person could read them without being fully convinced that on the undisputed facts, Mr. Lyon had very much the better of his opponents in the controversy; his experience as a United States surveyor gave him great advantage in such a dispute, and his coolness enabled him to use them effectively.
In the convention that formed the State constitution, he and Mr. Norvell, of Wayne, were among the leading spirits, and it was soon plainly apparent that they would be the two United States senators from the new State, if there was no miscarriage. At least several who were members of the convention have so stated, and within a week's time, the Hon. Townsend E. Gidley, who is, I believe, the only survivor of that band of eighty-seven men, told me that it was apparent to him after the first three or four day's session, that they were marked out for that office.

Michigan


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