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boat, were restored to them, and after a few weeks confinement, they recovered their health.*
But this is not the earliest exploration of the Mississippi pursued by our countrymen, and this occasion may well draw attention to this interesting navigation of the greatest river of our country, and among the largest of the earth.
The earliest Anglo-American enterprise in this direction, and indeed of wonderful boldness, which the author has been able to discover, is that of Col. Richard Taylor, late of the county of Jefferson, in the State of Kentucky, and often honored by distinguished public trusts. He was the father of the late President of the United States, Gen. Zach. Taylor. This gentleman, with hig brother, Hancock Taylor, both of Virginia, was at Fort Pitt, in 1769, and thence descended the Ohio and the Mississippi, as far as the Yazoo river. From this point, the brothers passed through, the country of the southern Indians to Georgia, and thence home, t
The second was that of John Whitacker Willis, John Ashby, and William Bolland, of Stafford and Fauquier counties, in Virginia. These men were engaged in the battle of Point Pleasant, ir. 1774, and after the engagement, visited Kentucky, as Boone and Harrod and others are known to have revisited it, after that memorable encounter, for the novelty of the enterprise. Being afraid to return to Virginia by land, along the usual route, they hollowed out a pirogue from the body of a large tree, and passed
* This account is so wonderful that, without full confirmation, the author would scarcely hazard its publication; but the particulars were extensively known atthe time, and came to the author from the late Joseph Benham, Esq., a lawyer distinguished at the bar of Cincinnati, Louisville and St. Louis, and father m law to Geo. D. Prentice, the distinguish'd editor of the Louisville Journal. His letter to the author contained the following additional particulars: "His companion in distress whose arms were broken, still  lives in the town of Brownsville, Pa., which at the time he joined Roger's expedition, was almost the Ultima Thule of western emigration. Capt. Benham left the Falls as soon as his wounds would permit, and returned home by way of New Orleans. He returned to the West in Harmar's campaign; was Commissary General to the army under Gen. St. Clair, and continued in the service performing arduous and responsible duties, until after the treaty of Greenville, in 1795, which put a period to the bloody sequel,^ the war of Independence.
In St. Clair's defeat, at the request of the General, when the army was surrounded by the Indians, he mounted his horse, and was among the foremost in leading on the bloody charge, which broke through the enemy's lines, and opened a way to save the remnant of the army. In this battle, he was again wounded. He was many years a useful and active member of the Territorial and State Legislatures of Ohio. His adventures may well be deemed notorious and authentic,
t This information was obtained from a deposition in a suit at law, communicated to the author by the late Worden Pope, of estimable memory in Kentucky.
down the rivers in it, to New Orleans. From this point the party made its way to Pensacola, then in possession of the British; hera they were assisted by the Governor, and conveyed to Charleston, in South Carolina, whence their return to Virginia was easy.*
The next effort at this perilous navigation by our own countrymen that I have met with, was the public mission of Cols. Gibson and Linn to New Orleans already related.
No doubt the navigation of the Mississippi had been fami iar to the French, from their remotest posts on the lakes to New Orleans. Indeed it had become a common course of mercantile business from Quebec and Montreal to the French possessions on the Mississippi; as well as the channel of military expeditions.
About the spring of 3779, a block house was built where the neat and beautiful city of Lexington now adorns the State of Kentucky, with her fruitful literary and scientific institutions. Here a settlement was begun, under the lead and direction of Robert Patterson, an early and meritorious adventurer in the West, much engaged in its defence and settlement. Col. Patterson was joined by the McConnels, Lindseys, and James Masterton. Soon after them, Maj. John Morrison removed his family from Harrodsburg and Mrs. Morrison is said to have been the first white female settled in Lexington. This name so well calculated to awaken patriotic associations was given by the pioneers to commemorate the battle of that name, so memorable at the commencement of the American Revolution. A name indeed well calculated to perpetuate the patriotic sentiments, for which the citizens of Lexington have ever been distinguished, even among a high-spirited people.
Bryant's station, about five miles north-eastward of Lexington, was settled by the Bryants also in 1779, and several stations were erected in the neighborhood of the present town of Danville. This notice must suffice for the rise of the towns of Kentucky now merging fast into the general settlement of the country.
• These men were neighbors of Capt. William B. Wallace, a worthy veteran of the revolution, formerly of Virginia, hut lately of Anderson county, Ky., where he died amid the regrets of a large circle ol admiring friends. He had stood sentry at the tent of Gov Henry at the opening of the revolution, although a gentleman of good estate. At that early day, it was matter of emulation and struggle not to get into commission, but to get into the ranks of the detenders of the republic. This most worthy gentleman is my authority for the above fact*. Credit, Gold and Silver.
System Ov Finance.
Cash and Credit are two main ingredients of commercial business. Cash is essential when there is no faith. Credit is employed when ability and integrity are acknowledged. The proportion of cash and of credit that is requisite at any time or place to do a judicious business, depends upon the degree of faith in the ability and integrity of the party asking for credit, to perform the promise of payment in cash at maturity.
Standing on the position of first principles, it is plainly seen that the wants of a civil community are supplied by various agents, that of money having no part or lot in the matter. The first wants are food, clothing and shelter. Food is obtained by agriculture, clothing by manufacture, and shelter by mechanic arts. Industry in each one of these spheres supplies the wants in each Other, by the primitive mode of commerce—the exchange of the superabundance Of food for sufficient clothing and shelter; the superabundance of clothing for sufficient food and shelter; and superabundance of shelter for sufficient food and clothing.
Exchange then was, and it still is the medium principle on which business transactions were and are conducted. This medium principle sprang into being through the co-operation of two laws: credit ?iecessity—credit given by the farmer to the mechanic, for the food of which the mechanic was in absolute want; credit given by the mechanic to the farmer for clothing and shelter, of which the farmer was in absolute want.
But after the primitive wants of food, clothing and shelter were supplied, and a superabundance of all these products were obtained, a passion for luxurious superfluities arose, a demand was made for spices and perfumes, "purple and fine linen," marble and managony, and also for gold and silver. These luxurious superfluities were considered a secondary necessity to those who became habituated to them, and who were able from the superabundance of their houses, lands and products, to exchange their surplus proceeds, for supplies of these articles, including geld and silver; and here again credit co operated with the new necessity to bring about an exchange of food, machinery, &c., for gold, silver, &c.
Yet gold and silver were not good to eat, even for Midas whose Food, as every thing he touched turned into gold, with whieh wonderful fortune he died a miserable death by starvation.
Gold and silver clothing would be more endurable than gold and silver food, though at best inconvenient and uncomfortable.
Houses full of gold and silver were suggested by the Simon mixed Balaam of old, who tried to use the Holy Spirit as an agent in obtaining for himself pecuniary glory, but the nearest practical approach that gold and silver have made to food, clothing and shelter, is as articles to eat with, as ornaments on tables, persons and houses.
Still gold and silver please the eye, and as their greatest virtue is their good looks, they were sent out by their owners for the purpose of circulating as mediums through whose instrumentality articles of more importance could be obtained. They gained credit, were acknowledged as having great extrinsic if not intrinsic merit. The fashion of society stamped them with peculiar value, and raised them as standards. They became objects of idolatry, the dual God of this world—the almighty dollar.
Credit for food, for clothing, and for shelter, could not then be gained without the intercession of this omnipotent though spiritless dust. The heart of man was set on an ornamental mineral. He who carried not the ornament, was compelled to bear disgrace. Honesty and genius were forced to die in want at the door of the rich and soulless Dives. Faith in industry, talent and integrity, were lost under the dominion of Mexican gold and silver, as in Spain. The tyranny of money enslaved the liberty of credit. A civil war for the freedom of the poor against the oppressions of the rich arose, and this struggle, renewed through centuries with varying fortunes, unto the present day, is still maintained by the necessity and spirit of the people. *
A few years ago, the people of Missouri felt the necessity of Railroad improvements to develop their resources, and gave evidence of a spirited determination to realize their wishes; but they had gold and silver enough only to start the enterprise. They called upon the State for credit. They, felt the full force of their necessities, and displayed an indomitable spirit to 6upply them. The State yielded to their demand, and granted them $8,250,000 of credit, to aid them in their Eailroad improvements. This was a triumph of an oppressed people struggling with a rich State, and the State did great honor to itself in granting credit to its people. This policy was both liberal and judicious. It gave freedom to the enterprising energy of the people, and stimulated them in the career of independence, while it made a profitable investment for the interests, and secured the faith of the State.
Now the question arises how shall this State credit be employed, in order to realize the greatest immediate profit, and at the same time to insure the firmest ultimate credit among the people?
The constitution of the State prohibits the incorporation of mora than one Banking Company. The statute of the State prohibits Individual Banking, and also prohibits the circulation within the State of Bank notes of other States.
But the people want good notes, and so great is this want that they daily violate the law to obtain even those that are not good. This law has, in this respect, become a dead letter. The bad notes of other States come to Msssouri, and take away the gold and silver from the people, while the private Banking prohibitioa is enforced. By which means the people risk the evils, and loss the profits of the system. While these unfortunate results are springing from commercial necessities under the present law; why. may not the law be modified so as to avoid the evils, and realize the profits of an ordinary system of finance? Why may not good notes, protected by State security, private responsibility, and a certain safe proportion of gold and silver, be issued by individual citizens and private partnerships in the State, with authority of law? Since the present law has lost all force against foreign interests, why should it be maintained against domestic interests? Why should the capit?lists of Missouri be prevented from furnishing the people with a sound currency, when the same people are daily dependent on foreign capitalists, whose currency is below par1 because it is foreign.
Let the present statute be modified to suit the wants of the people; then they would realise the greatest immediate profit from the State credit; the State would raise the credit of the people, while securing additional value to its own; the notes of other States would be returned home, and the gold and silver, which they have taken from, would be returned to Missouri; money would become safe and plenty; manufactures would arise; business be more and more active; farmers would increase their fortunes; and Railroad enterprises, which above all others need this aid, would be