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PORT HURON, MICHIGAN

BY MRS. B. C. FARRAND

This postmaster and lighthouse keeper was a most eccentric personage. In the treaty with the Indians, called the treaty of Detroit, his name appears as one of the witnesses. He conversed in the Indian language, and my informant says, "had hosts of relatives and friends in Detroit, " and spent much time there. Of British sympathy, he managed very adroitly his royalty and loyalty. He was very stout in figure, yet well proportioned, wore a wig and shaved daily. On account of rheumatism his hands were much enlarged and drawn out at the joints. His mouth was large, and "he took fits of drinking, and while they were on, no one could live with him. " He remained a bachelor all his days.
His does not seem an isolated case, so far as much whisky is concerned, for Mr. Aura P. Stewart of Algonac, a very aged pioneer, in his "Recollections" alludes to similar habits in the first prosecuting attorney of the county, the late Counsellor O'Keefe, who he says, was extremely intemperate; his drinking sprees were frequent, sometimes lasting for weeks. And it is related, also, that the vengeance of the Indians for the murder of "Black Duck" was ap peased by an order from Gen. Cass for forty quarts of whisky.
In 1829 the deputy postmaster, lighthouse keeper, constable and squire, Reuben Hamilton, removed to the south bank of Black River, or "down at the mouth. " There was then no post office except at Fort Gratiot. On the south side of the river were three houses only, the block house of John Riley, the half breed, the log house of Anselon Petit, the Frenchman, and the frame house, known as the Curley house, built by one Curley of Detroit, located where Percival's broom factory now is and then occupied by Mr. Hamilton and family.

MICHIGAN


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