F - Finley
C.D. FAIR (Troy) p. 338(1)
C.D. Fair, son of Jacob and Eve Fair, was born in Somerset county, Pennsylvania, February 17, 1825, and moved to Homes county, Ohio, with his father about the year 1832. About 1850, he came to Ashland county, and has been a resident of the county ever since. February 7, 1847, he was married to Sarah Richard, daughter of David and Nancy Richard, who was born in Holmes county, February 7, 1829. To them were born twelve children, as follows: Jacob W., Susan, Israel, Margaret, Sarah J., Daniel R., George W., James M., Nancy E., Jonah H., Harvey W., and one who died in infancy. Susan and Margaret are also dead. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
A.C. FAST (Orange) p. 347(1)
A.C. Fast came to Ohio from Pennsylvania when a small boy with his parents, who located in Orange township, Ashland county, Ohio, on a tract of land, where the widow of the subject of this sketch now lives in as pleasant a home as is to be found in the county. Mr. Fast purchased this place, after the death of his father, from the other heirs, subject to his mother’s dowry; she died about two years later. January 23, 1840, he married Catharine Fluke, daughter of Philip and Mary Fluke, who were among the early settlers of Ashland county, a sketch of whose lives will be found elsewhere in this work. Immediately after their marriage they moved to the place that proved to be their home ever after. Mr. Fast died November 26, 1862. They had eight children; three died in infancy, and five are still living, all grown, and doing for themselves. Their names are as follows: Wilson, Judson, Jennie, Byron, and Mary B. Wilson is married and is a successful law practitioner in Sedalia, Missouri. Judson is unmarried, and lives in Kelton, Utah, where he is a successful railroad man. Jennie is the wife of Mr. James Jacoby and lives on a farm in Dakota. He is quite a stockman. Bryon is unmarried and lives with his mother at the old homestead. He is one of the most successful farmers in Orange township and is a young man highly respected, as an intelligent, go ahead man such as any community might well be proud of. Mary B. is the wife of William Alger, and lives in Villisca, Iowa, where he is engaged in the banking business. To place the record of such a family on the sacred pages of history is a pleasant duty. Wilson Fast was a soldier for a period of nearly three years in the One Hundred and Second Ohio volunteer infantry. He was on board the fated boat “Sultana” on his way home and was one of those who successfully battled with the waves and miraculously made his way to land after a severe struggle, and reached home and was warmly welcomed by a fond and anxious mother, brothers, sisters and friends. The loss of a number of his comrades on board the boat from which he made his escape touched his sympathetic nature and destroyed considerably his anticipated pleasure on reaching the home of his childhood. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
CHRISTIAN FAST, SR. (Orange) p. 133(1)
As the full particulars of the capture of Christian Fast, by the Delawares of Sandusky, have never appeared in print, it may be interesting to the pioneers of west Pennsylvania and Ohio to peruse a brief sketch of his life among the red men of the Tymochtee.
In the month of June, 1781, an expedition, composed of Indians and Canadians, destined to invade Kentucky, moved from their places of rendezvous at Detroit, the Sandusky, the Miami and the Wabash. The salient point of the campaign was the falls of the Ohio, or Louisville, then containing only a few cabins, and a station for soldiers to protect the scattered settlements of Kentucky against Indian invasion.
Colonel George Rogers Clark, the hero of Kaskaskia and St. Vincent, learning that an expedition, composed of British and Indians, was about to invade that region, stationed a small body of troops at the village of Louisville, to intercept the passage of war parties on their way to the interior of Kentucky. His command was soon increased by the arrival of one hundred and fifty Pennsylvanians and Virginians, under the command of Colonel Slaughter.
Colonel Archibald Loughery, of Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, raised a corps of about one hundred men, who volunteered to accompany General Clark on the expedition. These volunteers embarked in boats at Wheeling, and moved down the river, in order to join the troops of General Clark at the falls of the Ohio. On the twenty-fourth of August, Colonel Loughery and his party passed the mouth of the Great Miami river, and soon afterward one of the boats was taken to the Kentucky side of the river, and a number of men, under the command of Captain William Campbell, went ashore for the purpose of cooking and eating some buffalo meat. The river was low, and the boat was fastened near a sand-bar. While on shore, Colonel Loughery’s forces were attacked by a large body of Indians, and after a brief resistance the small expedition was forced to surrender. Forty men were killed. Colonel Loughery was made prisoner, tomahawked and scalped. Sixty of his men were captured and taken to Detroit. See Dillon’s history of Indiana, pages 173-4.
For reasons never fully explained, the British expedition, commanded by Colonel Byrd, on reaching the mouth of the Great Miami, changed its destination; and when the boats conveying his troops, cannon and military stores, arrived on the Ohio river, instead of descending its rapid current, turned up the stream, and ascended the Licking to its forks, where he landed his men and munitions of war. It is probable the destination of Colonel Byrd was changed in consequence of his advanced Indian spies and scouts coming in contact with the forces of Colonel Slaughter in their descent of the Ohio.
Some thirty-five or forty miles above the falls, the boats of Colonel Slaughter, which were conveying horses and a few soldiers, became separated from the main body of the expedition in the night. At daylight the advanced boats drove an occasional stake near the shore, and attached written directions thereto, to guide the boats in the rear.
The boats thus abandoned being deprived of proper rations for the soldiers, had no alternative but to supply themselves with such game as could be obtained from the forest. Perceiving a buffalo heifer leisurely feeding a short distance from shore, the larger boat was shoved to a shoal and the heifer shot. It was hastily skinned, a fire was built, and the soldiers proceeded to prepare breakfast.
While in the act of cooking the flesh of the heifer, the party was attacked by Indians, who were probably drawn to the spot by the sound of the guns. The frightened soldiers, who had neglected to station pickets, fled to the boat which had been stranded on the shoal, just as the smaller boats were making toward the shore for breakfast. They were unable to shove the boat to the current, and the Indians rushed down the shore firing into the boat, wounding and killing several of the men and horses.
All was consternation. Many of the soldiers endeavored to save themselves by leaping overboard and attempting to swim to the opposite side of the river, but, on reaching it were again fired upon. Among those who fled to the opposite shore was Christian Fast, a youth of about seventeen years of age, who had volunteered as a cavalry-man, from what is now Fayette county, Pennsylvania, then a part of Westmoreland county.
Young Fast was an expert swimmer. As the Indians rushed upon the men, he leaped over the opposite side of the horse boat, and struck out boldly for the Kentucky shore, which he reached in safety. Just as he was about to arise from the water and ascend the bank, two or three Indians approached him, saying:
“Come on, brother, we will use you well,[”] at the same time reaching out their hands in token of friendship.
Knowing the savage character of the red man, he doubted their pacific intentions, and speedily turning about, started for the middle of the river. He had scarcely got in motion, when they commenced to fire after him, a ball passing so near his head that it stunned him for a moment, by its concussion in the water, while another ball passed through the fleshy part of his thigh, making a painful wound, notwithstanding which, he succeeded in reaching the center of the river.
On reaching the main current, he found the boats had floated some distance from the stranded one from which he had fled, and he resolved to swim after and overtake a small horse boat which was a few rods in the rear of the rest. After a vigorous exertion, aided by the current and a shower of bullets from shore, he reached the boat just as she surrendered. The Indians boarded it at once, and the prisoners were taken on shore, and the plunder secured.
After the prisoners had been deprived of all means of defence, the savages proceeded to strip them of such wearing apparel as they desired. In fact, the majority of the captives were left almost nude. The military suits with which the soldiers were clothed were deemed a God-send to these children of the forest. The appearance of the captives was most distressing; nevertheless resistance would have been rewarded with a cruel, lingering death by torture.
When the exulting savages had secured such plunder as they could carry away, it was put up in bundles and their new prisoners were compelled to pack it. The whole party proceeded through the forest in the direction of Upper Sandusky. The level lands along the Ohio and the Miami, at that season, abounded in rank, almost impenetrable, weeds, briars and nettles. The journey was a severe ordeal.
Young Fast was small, had hair as black as a raven, dark eyes, and a swarthy skin; was exceedingly agile, and very slim and straight. His appearance pleased the Indians, and an old Delaware claimed him as his prisoner. The leader of the band was old Thomas Lyons. On the route to Upper Sandusky, which was principally up the Great Miami until they reached the portage, the poor prisoners endured many hardships and cruelties.
Having been deprived of their clothing, the nettles, briars, weeds and undergrowth made fearful havoc with their uncovered bodies, so much so, that on one occasion, after they had been some hours in the forest, young Fast put down his head and refused to proceed, telling his Indian master to tomahawk him. The old warrior took pity on him, and returned most of his clothing. His wound was becoming quite painful. The old warrior assisted in dressing it until it healed.
After the war party had been two or three days in the forest, the Indians built a camp-fire and cleared a spot for a dance. The prisoners were all tied so as to prevent their escape. The savages engaged in the dance with much spirit, singing, hopping, leaping, brandishing their tomahawks and scalping knives, and grimacing in a most frightful manner. Their music was a sort of wail, between a shout and a moan, while a kind of time was beaten on a brass kettle by a warrior.
When the Indian dance had ended, the prisoners, one by one, were untied and requested to give an exhibition of their agility. With bodies torn and bruised, half famished for want of food, wearied with the journey, and almost nude, they endeavored to comply, knowing that a refusal would incur the hate and severity of their savage masters. When the time came for young Fast to dance, he felt it impossible to do so, in consequence of his painful wound, but fearing to incur the censure and vengeance of the warriors, he said to his comrades: “Boys, I can’t dance and run on my feet, but I can run on my hands.” So, limping into the ring, when the Indian music began, he proceeded a few steps, and then springing upon his hands, he elevated his feet, and commenced a sort of bear dance, accompanied by sundry singular maneuvers on his hands, turning an occasional somersault, and yelling like an Indian!
At first the savages seemed amazed at his performances, but soon began to applaud by the most uproarious laughter and shouts, some of them actually rolling on the ground in their merriment. After he had passed around the ring in this gymnastic manner, several of the warriors who had been most delighted with his antics, put their hands on the ground and desired him to “do so more.” He pointed to his wound and refused, saying, he was “too lame.” His singular vivacity and good nature captivated the Indians, and from that time on, he was the hero of the party, and was no longer tied at night.
On reaching the Shawnee towns on the Great Miami, the prisoners were compelled to run the gauntlet for the amusement of the old Shawnees, the squaws and youth. Several of the prisoners were severely beaten. A man by the name of Baker, a silversmith by trade, from Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, was beaten almost to death. In his desperation, he ran past the council house two or three times, being blinded by the blows and fright, and was about to sink, when a friendly voice directed him to enter the door. He did so and was spared. When this performance was going on, the old warrior who had young Fast in charge, shoved him back among the Indians, and he did not have to undergo the punishment of the gauntlet.
When the party arrived at Upper Sandusky, the prisoners were again compelled to undergo the ordeal of running the gauntlet. They were all handled very severely, but none of them were killed. Young Fast was again excused from the gauntlet by his Indian master. His wound, by this time, had nearly healed. The surviving prisoners soon recruited from their fatigue, and were exchanged at Pittsburgh, and on the Muskingum.
Young Fast was retained, and adopted into an old Delaware family, in lieu of a son who had lost his life in a border skirmish. His hair was plucked out in the usual manner, leaving a small scalp-lock about the crown; his white blood was all washed away; his ears and the cartilage of his nose were perforated, and brooches placed therein. After this, he was dressed in Indian costume, his hair roached up, and filled with gaudy feathers. Being taken to the council-house, he was regularly indoctrinated as the son the tribe. He received the name of Mo-Lun-the, and was taken to the cabin, or wigwam, of his new parents.
Young Fast resided on the banks of the Tymochtee about two years. He was treated very kindly by his Indian mother. He had an Indian brother, by the name of Ke-was-sa, to whom he became much attached. They often hunted coon and other game. On one occasion, Ke-was-sa invited young Fast to accompany him to hunt bear. After traveling some distance in the forest, they discovered evidences of the ascent of a bear up a large elm, which was hollow near the top. After trying some time, in vain, to rouse the bear from its retreat, it was proposed that a tree, which stood at a proper distance from the elm, should be felled, in such a manner as to lean against the elm, to enable young Fast to climb to the hole, and smoke bruin out with punk and rotten wood. The tree was cut, and fell against the elm. Young Fast, being expert in climbing , ascended it to the proposed point, and commenced operations with a view of smoking bruin into a surrender. Kewassa placed himself in a position, gun in hand, where he could welcome the bear, on its appearance, to a smell of powder. Young Fast lighted the dry tinder and threw it into the hole, but bruin failed to make his appearance. While engaged in this fruitless enterprise, a strong breeze struck the leaning tree, and it fell to the ground. Here was a dilemma. Young Fast was some forty feet from the ground, on a large elm. He could not grasp his arms around it, so as to safely descend. Kewassa was alarmed for his safety. There could be no help, for the only tree in the vicinity had been cut. After gazing at young Fast some time, without being able to offer assistance, he hastened to the camp, several miles away, expecting that his new brother would be dashed to pieces.
Taking in the situation at a glance, young Fast concluded that he only hazarded his life by remaining where he was; and the attempt to descend could result in nothing more than death, but might terminate in safety. Summoning all his strength, he grasped the rough bark with his hands, at the same time making good use of his feet and legs, and commenced the decent, moving cautiously, until he came within fifteen or eighteen feet of the ground, when his strength so far failed him, that he was compelled to relax his grip and slid down, mangling his hands, and the inside of his arms and legs badly. On reaching the ground he was considerably stunned, but soon revived and started for the camp, where he arrived amidst the grief of his Indian mother and brother, who had given him up as lost.
On one occasion, after he had been a captive over a year, when all the warriors were absent from the village, his Indian mother having also left the camp for a short time, he became very melancholy. Thoughts of home stole upon him. He left the wigwam and proceeded a short distance into the forest, and seating himself upon a log, soon became absorbed in meditation. While thus musing, he was interrupted by a stranger, who suddenly appeared and confronted him. Discovering his embarrassment and dejection, the stranger said in the Delaware language:
“Ah, young man, what are you thinking about?”
Fast.–“I am alone, and have no company, and feel very lonesome.”
Stranger.–“That is not it, you are thinking of home. Be a good boy and you shall see your home again.”
After some further conversation, he learned that the stranger was none other than that terror of the pioneers, the renegade, Simon Girty. Young Fast afterward became well acquainted with Girty, and was the recipient of many favors at his hands. In fact, Girty’s assurance that he would again see his home in Pennsylvania, greatly revived his drooping spirits and led him to believe that Girty, though often denounced by the pioneers as a villain, a demon in human shape, was not destitute of sympathy and kindness, though associating with the fierce red men of the northwest.
During the campaign of Colonel William Crawford, which ended so disastrously, Mr. Fast was with the Delawares on the Tymochtee. Captain Pipe and Wingenund, leading Delaware chiefs, resided, when in their villages, in that region of Ohio. After the rout of Crawford’s army, when the Colonel was brought back a prisoner, Mr. Fast was present and saw him. He was in hearing distance when the Delawares tortured the Colonel, and could hear his groans. He was so much affected that he left the spot in company with his Indian brother and mother. Mr. Fast, in his lifetime, often related incidents connected with the unfortunate expedition of poor Crawford. As they have been repeated by Dr. Knight, Slover, and Heckewelder, it is unnecessary to narrate them here.
Shortly after the execution of Crawford, Mr. Fast was urged to marry a young squaw, a daughter of an Indian family of some distinction. He was then about nineteen years of age. It was a question of much delicacy, and required a good deal of tact to repel the proposal in such manner as to avoid offence. When the subject was again seriously pressed upon his attention, he intimated he was only a boy, and was too young to marry. The Delawares were greatly amused at his modesty, and his reason for refusing. He added as a further objection, that no man should marry until he had become a good hunter, and could provide meat. Not being the owner of a gun, it would be impossible for him to supply the quantity of game required for food. Moreover, he thought he could not get along without a cow, an essential to every person designing to marry. As soon as these could be procured he would gladly consent. He professed much admiration for the young squaws, and intimated he could easily select a wife from among them, if his terms could be met. It was agreed his ideas were correct, and that he should accompany the first expedition to the settlements along the Ohio, and the first gun captured should be his, and on returning he should be permitted to bring back a cow.
In August, 1782, there was a grand council at Chillicothe, on or near the Great Miami, in which the Wyandots, Delawares, Ottawas, Mingoes, Shawnees, Miamis and Pottawatomies participated. Simon Girty, Elliott and McKee were present, and addressed the assembled warriors. The council resolved to raise two armies, one of six hundred men, and the other of three hundred and fifty, the larger to march into Kentucky, and the smaller into western Virginia and Pennsylvania. By the last of August, the greater army appeared under the lead of Simon Girty, at Bryant’s station, in the territory of Kentucky. The story is narrated in all the histories of Kentucky.
The Indian forces destined to operate against the border settlements of Virginia and Pennsylvania, delayed their march until a runner brought tidings of success from Kentucky. Some four hundred fierce warriors assembled on the Sandusky, and were armed and equipped by the agents of the British. The warriors were dressed and painted in the most fantastic manner, their hair, being gathered in a sort of cue and drawn through a tin tube, was ornamented by colored hawk or eagle quills. With scalping knives, tomahawks and guns, they presented a formidable appearance. For many days and nights before the expedition started, their wild orgies echoed through the forests. Speeches, dances and the like, accompanied by threats of extermination against the white race, were common.
Young Fast was painted in true warrior style, his hair being put up in a cue and drawn through a tin tube, and ornamented with feathers. He was furnished a tomahawk, scalping-knife, and bow, and told he might accompany the expedition. Before departing, he buried, in a secure place, his fancy brooches and other ornaments of silver, so that if he ever returned he could reclaim them. The expedition passed down the old Wyandot trail through what are now Crawford, Richland and Ashland counties, by Mohican Johnstown; thence near the ruins of the Moravian towns on the Tuscarawas. Arriving at that point, a difference of opinion arose as to the exact destination of the expedition.
After some consultation in council, as the expedition to Kentucky was proving successful, it was decided that the Indian army should proceed to and attack the small fort or block-house at what is now the city of Wheeling, West Virginia. On the approach of the Indian army, the expedition was discovered by John Lynn, a noted spy and frontier hunter, who was scouting through the forests and watching the Indian paths west of the Ohio. He hastened to the stockade and gave the alarm. The stockade had no regular garrison, and had to be defended exclusively by the settlers who sought security within its walls. On the arrival of Lynn, all retired within the stockade, except a family of Zanes; and when the attack began, there were but about twenty efficient men to oppose nearly four hundred savages, led on by Simon Girty.
The Indian army soon crossed the Ohio river, and approached the stockade waving British colors. An immediate surrender was demanded. Colonel Silas Zane responded by firing at the flag borne by the savages. The assault was commenced by the Indians, and kept up briskly for three days and nights, but each attack was successfully repelled by the little garrison. While the men within were constantly engaged in firing at the enemy, the women moulded bullets, loaded and handed guns to the men, and by this means every assault was repulsed. The galling fire poured upon the savages exasperated them to madness. In the night they attempted to burn Zane’s house, from which they had suffered most, but through the vigilance of Sam, a colored man, their intentions were thwarted.
On the return of light, on the second day, the savages, after some delay, renewed the siege. A wooden cannon, loaded with balls captured from a small boat on its way to the falls of the Ohio, was pointed towards the stockade, and, amid the yells of the infuriated Indians, discharged. They expected to see a section of the stockade blown to splinters, and an opening for the warriors created. The cannon exploded, and fragments flew in every direction. Several of the warriors were wounded and a number killed, and all were appalled at the result. Recovering from their dismay, and being furious from disappointment, they again pressed to the assault with renewed energy. They were as often repelled by the deadly aim of the little garrison, and forced to retire.
The achievements of Elizabeth Zane, on this occasion, are matters of history, and too well known to require repetition in this article.
The third day the siege was renewed with terrible ferocity; but every attempt to storm the fort was successfully resisted. In the afternoon, despairing of success, the Indians resolved to change their programme. About one hundred warriors remained to annoy the stockade, lay waste the country, and scour the neighboring settlements. The balance of the army crossed the Ohio, and made a feint of returning to Sandusky, but the next morning re-crossed the river above the stockade, and divided into two parties, and hastened towards the settlements about Fort Rice, some forty miles away, in what is now Washington county, Pennsylvania.
On the third night of the siege, learning of the departure of a part of the Indian army, and presuming the savages were about to invade his old home, young Fast resolved, if possible, to effect his escape. Late in the night, while reposing beside his Indian brother on his blanket, on the ground, the memory of his home and dear friends came fresh to his recollection, and knowing the whole settlement was imperiled by the approach of his savage companions, intent on revenge and blood, he could not sleep. Ka-wa-sa, his Indian brother, wearied with the exertions of a three days’ siege, slept soundly. Knowing the nature of an Indian, when profoundly slumbering, young Fast attempted to awaken his Indian brother, stating that he was very thirsty and desired him to go with him to the river for water. He refused to rise, telling Molunthe to wait until morning.
Permitting his brother to return to his state of stupor for some time, he again made an effort to arouse him, insisting that he could not wait, but must have water. The Indian, having full confidence in young Fast, as a brother, told him to go himself, as no one would harm him. He was but too happy to comply. Taking a small copper kettle, he hastened to the river bank and placed the kettle in a position that might imply that he had fallen into the stream, been drowned and floated down the current. Then carefully wending his way through the Indian lines, he proceeded across the hills and valleys in the direction of Fort Rice, on Buffalo creek, some fifteen or twenty miles from his old home. He groped his way among rocks, down declivities and across small streams, sometimes falling headlong down the embankments, and about daylight became exhausted from fatigue and want of food, and was compelled to seek repose at the base of a steep bluff, in a thicket of undergrowth; and while resting there, could distinctly hear the passing warriors conversing. A short distance hence the trail divided.
Carefully concealing himself until all the warriors passed, he again proceeded in the direction of the fort, taking a ridge midway between the trails. By a vigorous exertion he got in advance of the savages, and when within about two miles of the fort, he discovered a white man approaching with a bridle and halter in his hand. Springing behind a large tree, he waited until the settler arrived within a few feet of his concealment, when he stepped into the path and confronted him. The white man was taken by surprise and trembled with fear, and was about to flee for life, when the supposed warrior addressed him in English, briefly informing him who he was, where he was going, the approach of the warriors and the danger that environed the settlement. Calmed by the assurances of present safety, the white man caught his horses, which were near, and he and young Fast mounted and hastened to the fort and spread the alarm, and succeeded in gathering the settlers in the vicinity into it before the savages appeared. The fort consisted of a strong block-house, surrounded by several cabins of the settlers. When all the men were gathered in, there were only six.
The savages approached with much assurance, and offering to spare all the prisoners, if the little band would surrender. Young Fast assured the inmates that the cold steel of the tomahawk would be the price of such an indiscretion. Their proffers of safety were not accepted. A fierce assault at once commenced. The siege was kept up all day and night; but the little fort held out. Several of the savages were wounded, and the warriors finally despairing of success, suddenly withdrew and spread among the scattered settlements in detached parties, burning houses, and shooting cattle and hogs. They had probably learned the approach of Colonel Swearinger with relief for Wheeling, that was yet beleaguered by the red fiends.
After the retirement of the savages, young Fast hastened to his old home, painted and dressed as an Indian warrior. On arriving at the cabin of his parents in what is now Fayette county, he so nearly resembled a wild Indian warrior of the wilderness that his parents were unable to distinguish him. Indeed, they were much alarmed at his presence, fearing he was a genuine savage acting as a decoy. He attempted to calm their fears by assuring them, in their own tongue, that his name was Fast, and that he was really their own son! At length his mother, recalling some peculiarity about the pupils of his eyes, and some spots on his breast, recognized him, and rushing forward to embrace him in her arms, was told not to do so, as he was covered with vermin from the Indian camps. The tube in which his scalp-lock was enclosed was removed and he repaired to an out-building where his infected garments were taken off and burned. Soap and water soon removed the encrusted paint and soil from his person, when he was presented with a clean suit of clothes, which restored him to his status as a white man. The joy of his parents on his safe return home, scarcely knew bounds. A full detail of his adventures was given, and often repeated to inquiring friends.
On arriving at manhood, Mr. Fast located in Dunker township, Greene county, Pennsylvania, where he married, and remained until the spring of 1815, when he removed with his family to what is now Orange township, Ashland county, Ohio, and settled about half a mile southeast of the Vermillion lakes. When Mr. Fast and family arrived at the lakes, he found a number of Indians encamped near where he subsequently erected a cabin. He built a fire and his wife proceeded to prepare supper, surrounded by a dense forest. While in the act of cooking, their little company was alarmed by the appearance of eight or ten Indians, headed by an old warrior who was extremely ugly, shriveled in flesh, and ferocious in appearance. They had just discovered their new neighbors, and came to see who they were. On approaching within a few feet of Mr. Fast and his children, who were seated on a log near where Mrs. Fast was preparing supper, the old Indian looked steadfastly at Mr. Fast for a moment, and then rushing forward exclaimed, Molunthe! at the same time offering his hand in token of friendship.
The old warrior was Thomas Lyons, who was present at the capture of Mr. Fast, on the Ohio, some thirty-five years prior to that time, and was along with the expedition to Wheeling when his favorite young warrior, Molunthe, made his escape. The Indians had never suspected him of desertion, but had always believed he had, in the darkness, fallen into the river and drowned. On finding him here alive, “old Tom,” manifested much gratification, and gave many tokens of a friendship that remained very cordial up to 1822, the last appearance of the Delawares in this region. During the ensuing seven years, the Delawares often encamped in the vicinity, regarding Mr. Fast and family as of their tribe. They frequently went into his cabin in the evening and danced after the Delaware manner, making rude music by pounding on a stool and singing, while the dancers hopped about the room, flourishing their scalping-knives, shouting and keeping time to the music.
In the fall of 1819, old Thomas Lyons and a party of Delawares had a feast, on what is now known as the John Freeborn farm, southwest of Savannah, to which Mr. Fast and his sons were invited. Being unable to be present, his sons Nicholas and Francis, aged respectively twenty-five and fifteen, attended. The feast was in their camp. There were present some fifty or sixty Indians, and no whites, except the Fasts. A large black bear had been roasted and boiled. The body being roasted, was cut into small slices, and handed around on new bark plates. The head and feet, unskinned, were boiled in a copper kettle, and a sort of soup made therefrom which was handed around in wooden ladles. Nicholas and Francis partook, courteously, with the Indians. The roast was elegant, but the soup was not relished. At the conclusion of the feast, Lyons insisted on painting Francis, Indian fashion. The boy readily submitted, for the fun of the thing. “Old Tom” laid on a good coat of vermillion, which gave him the appearance of a young Indian. The paint was so adhesive that, when he returned home, he was unable to remove it for a long time; and was afterwards known as “Indian Frank.” Billy Montour, Jim Jirk, Monos, Jonacake, George and Jim Lyons, Buckwheat, Billy Dowdee, Captain George, and other well known Delawares, were at the feast.
Christian Fast had nine sons, Jacob, Martin, William, Nicholas, David, Francis, George, Christian, and John; and four daughter, Margaret, Barbara, Isabel, and Christena. Jacob, aged 84, William 78, and George 65, remain in Orange township.
Christian Fast, sr., died, at his farm in Orange township, in 1849. (Transcribed by Penny Hanes PHanes1368@aol.com) (Contributed by Russ Shopbell)
JACOB FAST (Jackson)#1 p. 383(1)
JACOB FAST, son of Martin Fast, the oldest son of Christian Fast, the Delaware captive, was born in Jackson township, Wayne county, Ohio, September 12, 1821. His father owned the farm upon which he (Jacob) has resided since his birth. Martin Fast, his father, unfortunately lost his life June 13, 1838, at the age of fifty-six years. Like his father he was remarkably venturesome. At the time of the fatal accident he was attending a barn raising at the home of Mr. Hankey Priest, a neighbor. During the day a hive of bees swarmed and escaped. Mr. Fast and one or two others followed them until they settled on a tree. He ascended and hived them in a pillow case, and while in the act of descending, accidentally placed his foot upon a dead limb which gave way, and he fell to the ground, and was so injured that he survived but a few minutes. He had great fondness for bees, and could handle them without exciting their resentment. At the time of his death he possessed one hundred hives. This accident deprived his son Jacob, th[e]n seventeen years of age, of many advantages he otherwise would have had. He was compelled to remain on the homestead as a laborer, and his opportunities to attend school were limited. In 1844, by industry, he had acquired sufficient means to attend Ashland Academy one session. He returned to his farm, and in 1852 was elected township clerk, and has held the office ever since. In the fall of the same year he was elected justice of the peace, and re-elected five times, serving until 1870. In the fall of 1873 he was again elected a justice of the peace, and in the fall of 1875 re-elected; so that, if he survives to the end of his present term, he will have acted as justice twenty-four years. Mr. Fast is noted for his integrity, sobriety, and intellectual worth. He is a member of the Christian church. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
JACOB FAST (Jackson)#2 p. 339(1)
Jacob Fast, son of Martin Fast, was born in Ashland county, Ohio September 12, 1821, and is living on the homestead at this writing. Mr. Fast was married twice; his first wife was Elizabeth Plice to whom he was married September 7, 1848. To them were born four children, as follows: Irene T., Joseph E., Mary S., Samuel C., all of whom are living but Samuel C. Mr. Fast married for his second wife, Melissa M. Burlingame, July 20, 1865. The fruit of this marriage was two children–Edwin F. and Cora E. Mr. and Mrs. Fast are members of the Disciple church. Mr. Fast has held the office of justice of the peace since 1852, with the exception of one term. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
JONAS FAST (Orange) p. 345(1)
Jonas Fast, son of William and Ann C. E. Fast, was born in Ashland county, April 10, 1836, and has always lived in this county. October 6, 1864, he married Mary A., daughter of Elias and Sarah Marshall, who was born in Ashland, July 8, 1845. Their children are: Clement L.V., Cladean, Ida B., William E., John L., Edea M., and one who died in infancy. Mr. Fast and wife are members of the Disciple church. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
WILLIAM FAST (Orange) p. 251(1)
WILLIAM FAST was born in Green county, Pennsylvania March 24, 1794, and went to school until he was sixteen years old. He came to Orange township when about twenty-one years old, and entered three hundred and twenty acres of land for himself and father, and moved out in the spring of 1814. The family was Martin, Nicholas, Jacob, William, Christian, David, Francis, George, John, Margaret, Barbara, Betsy, and Christena, married to a cousin in Fayette county, Pennsylvania.
William Fast married Elizabeth Fast, a cousin, in Fayette county, Pennsylvania, in 1817. His wife lived until July 1869, when she died aged seventy-four. Their children were: Frances, Elizabeth, Christena, Sarah, Levi, Jesse, John, V., William, Jonas, Joshua B., and one who died in childhood. Five of these are also dead: Frances, Elizabeth, Christena, John N., and William. Levi, Jesse and John live in Michigan; the rest in Ashland county.
The mental faculties of Mr. Fast seem to be well preserved, and he possesses fine physical powers for one of his age. The old gentleman often relates incidents in relation to Tom Lyons, Jonacake, and other Delawares with whom he was acquainted in his youth. He knew many of the Green and Jerometown Indians. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
JOHN FERRELL (Clearcreek) p. 313(1)
JOHN FERRELL, son of Obediah, was born in Beaver county, Pennsylvania, in 1816. When he was but three months old, his father moved to Ohio and settled in Ashland county, three miles northwest of Ashland, on a farm adjoining Mr. Burgett. They commenced life in a log cabin, he remaining with his parents until the death of his father in 1844; his mother lived three years longer and died in 1847. The subject of this sketch was married in 1850, to Eliza Gries, by whom he had five sons and five daughters. Mr. Ferrell now resides in Clearcreek township, with his family around him, enjoying the reward that energy and industry are sure to bring. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
LANCE FERRELL (Milton) p. 348(1)
Lance Ferrell is a native of Milton township and was born August 19, 1829. August 20, 1849, he was married to Susan Nelson daughter of a pioneer family of Ashland county. To them were born eight children, seven daughters and one son: Sara E., who was born September 14, 1850, and died in early womanhood, four years after her marriage to Amos Jameson; Laura A., born September 7, 1853; Ella E., born January 14, 1856; Forrest A., born May 20, 1859, died April 4, 1863; Nettie A., born February 28, 1861, died March 26, 1862; Cora B., born July 8, 1864; Minnie E., born November 30, 1866; and Zettie, born January 24, 1871. Mr. Ferrell lives on what is called the Short farm near the old homestead. Both himself and wife are members of the Lutheran church. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
WILLIAM FERRELL (Clearcreek) p. 311(1)
WILLIAM FERRELL, son of Obediah Ferrell, was born in Beaver county, Pennsylvania in 1812. He came to what is now Ashland county, with his parents in August, 1816. On April 18, 1844, he was married to May Huffman, a daughter of an old pioneer family. To them have been born eleven children, six sons and five daughters. One daughter died in infancy, and Obediah on February 15, 1868, at the age of twelve. All are settled in life, except Daniel, George W., Lilly and Lewis, who live with their parents on the old homestead. Mr. Ferrell is a prominent citizen of Ashland county, and is honored and respected by all who know him. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
ABRAHAM FERRIS (Ruggles) p. 180(1)
Was born in Columbia county, New York, June 16, 1788. He served in the war of 1812, and married Marinda Philips, and removed to Ruggles township in 1824. He voyaged up the lake from Buffalo to Sandusky in a schooner, and after being delayed by a lake storm, reached Ruggles, by way of New London, and located on lot seventeen, section three, having erected a cabin. His family, at his decease, which took place August 13, 1850, consisted of Laura, Philetus, Samuel, Sarah, Lois, Erastus, Elias, Jesse and Elmira. His wife died September 17, 1850. Several members of the family are now deceased. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
DANIEL FICKES (Mohican) p. 360(1)
Daniel Fickes is the son of John and Elizabeth Fickes, and was born in Stark county, Ohio in 1849. He is the seventh of nine children. In 1871 he married Sylvia A. Eley, who was born in this county, which place has always been her home. The fruits of this union are four children, all of whom are living, and named respectively: David, born April 15, 1872; Clara Bell, born September 22, 1874; Mary J., born February 24, 1877; and John, born October 6, 1879. Our subject is a farmer by occupation, which vocation he has followed from boyhood. He, together with his wife, are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and are alike respected for their Christian values. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
ADAM FIKE (Milton) p. 349(1)
Adam Fike was a native of Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, and came to Milton township in 1835, with his wife and three little children. At the age of thirty, he married Elizabeth Lutz. The names of their children were: Susan, Emanuel, C.L., and Adam, the last dying in early childhood. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
C.L. FIKE (Milton) p. 349(1)
C.L. Fike was born in Pennsylvania October 2, 1823, and came to Ohio with his parents in 1835. Twice he has been married; the first time to Mary Ann Buckley, who died in June, 1869, leaving a family of three children. Mr. Fike remarried August 24, 1872, to Amanda McQuait, by whom he has had two sons, Joseph Leander and Henry. He has led an industrious and honorable life and is looked upon by all who know him as one of the most influential farmers of Milton township. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
ABNER FINLEY (Lake) p. 288(1)
Abner Finley, son of John Finley, was born in Ashland county in 1830, on the farm now owned by his mother; he received a common school education, and has always been engaged in farming. In 1856, he married Elizabeth Smith, of Green township, Ashland county. One year he was township trustee; and in politics is a Republican. The names of his eight children are as follows: Thomas A., who married Effie L. Lybarger, of Wayne county; Frank S., James B., Clinton, Luella, John, Mark and Howard. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
ALEXANDER FINLEY (Mohican) p. 143(1)
Alexander Finley was born in Hartford county, Maryland, in the year 1770, of Scotch- Irish parents. His father was descended from one of seven brothers who emigrated to the north of Ireland during “King William’s war.” They subsequently emigrated to the State of New Jersey, from whence one of the brothers migrated to Hartford county, in the State of Maryland, about a century and a half ago. Here Alexander Finley was born. He attended the schools of his native country, and obtained a knowledge of the English branches. Upon reaching manhood, he located in Green county, Pennsylvania, where he married Miss Mary Smith, a relative of the Hon. Resolve Smith, president of the first bank organized in Philadelphia. In the fall of 1803, he emigrated, with his little family, to Fairfield county, Ohio, then including the counties of what are now Licking, Knox, Richland and Ashland, and stopped the winter of 1803-4 in the cabin of Thomas Bell Patterson, on the present site of Mount Vernon. In the spring of 1804, he erected a cabin, about half a mile northwest of Mr. Patterson, on what is now the Fredericktown road, and resided there until April 1809. On the fifteenth of April, 1809, he landed on the west bank of the Lake fork of Mohican, on the present site of Tylertown, where he quartered a few months in a camp cabin.
In May, Benjamin Bunn and family, William and Thomas Eagle and family arrived. These were the settlers in what is now Mohican township, in 1809. When Mr. Finley arrived, he was soon visited by the Indians of what was then known as Jerometown, a village on the Jerome fork of the Mohican, some five miles northwest of his cabin. The inhabitants of the Indian village were generally friendly. Mr. James Finley, of Marquand, Madison county, Missouri, from whom was obtained these particulars, says:
“As near as I can recollect, the Indian village contained perhaps about thirty bark and pole huts or wigwams. The names of the heads of families were, Aweepsah, Oppetete, Catotawa, Neshohawa, Buckanddohee, Shias, Ground-squirrel, Buckwheat, Philip Canonicut, and sometimes Thomas Lyons, Billy Montour, and Thomas Jelloway. The chief, Captain Pipe (Hobacon), resided some distance from the village. He was a tall, dark, scowling old Indian, and seemed hostile to the whites. I seldom saw him. He did not associate with the whites of the neighborhood, but did his trading abroad. I learned that he and Armstrong, of Greentown, often made expeditions to attack emigrants on the Ohio River, on their way to Kentucky. John Jerry Bettis Jerome had a cabin on the present site of Jeromeville, near the stream, when we moved to the country. He had been a trader among the Indians seventeen years in the northwest, and was a Frenchman; and like most of the traders of that nation, married a squaw. He had a daughter ten years old, named Aweepsah. He had cleared some twenty-five or thirty acres–had horses, cattle and hogs, and often entertained the pioneers. After the declaration of war, his wife and daughter accompanied the Jerometown Indians to Piqua, where they died. Jerome sold his land and married a German woman, and removed to the mouth of Huron, on the lake, where he died some years afterward.”
In 1809 the region along the Lake and Jerome forks of Mohican, was an unbroken forest. Jerome, and Benjamin Mills, who resided on the present site of Wooster, as Mr. Finley supposes, were the only white people in that part of Wayne county. He became quite intimate with Jerome, and exchanged many articles of food with him, and was indebted to him for many acts of friendship. The Indian village was about one mile southwest of Jerome’s cabin, and surrounded on three sides by almost impenetrable marshes, filled with alder and other swamp growths. The emigrants of 1810-11, state, “that the wigwams or huts were scattered over a space of eight or ten acres, with the undergrowth cut away, and a smooth play-ground in the center, which was much used as a bowling ground. Here the hunters and warriors amused themselves. The council house was located northwest of the village, and was some twenty-five feet wide and fifty feet long, covered with clapboards and bark. It was of poles and split timber.” Years before the arrival of Mr. Finley, this village was conspicuous in the annals of the border wars. It was located near the ancient trail leading from Pittsburgh to Upper Sandusky, and many trembling captives ran the gauntlet in passing through it, on their way to the Indian towns in the northwest. This was the headquarters of those warriors of the Wolf tribe that still followed the fortunes of Captain Pipe. At that period the Greentown Indians seemed quite intimate with the Jerometown branch of the Delawares, and often associated with them in celebrating their feasts.
In 1810, Vachel and William Metcalf, Thomas and Joshua Oram, Benjamin and John Mackerel, James and Joseph Conelly, Elisha Chilcote, John Shinnabarger, and their families.
When the war of 1812 came, and the Indians commenced hostile demonstrations, Mr. Finley, and some of his neighbors, forted in Wooster. In 1813, he joined families and forted with his neighbor, John Shinnabarger, who had a strong cabin with port holes, one mile northwest of the present site of Tylertown. Save the affair at Colyer’s, elsewhere alluded to, the settlement remained undisturbed. James Finley relates a number of amusing incidents connected with the flight of the pioneers to Wooster, and other places of safety. After proceeding some distance along a circuitous path, with his family, his father remembered that he had left some young calves in pens, and fearing they would starve, returned to let them to the cows, and then attempted to pass straight through the forest to Wooster, eleven miles away, but soon became confused, and was out three days before he got to the fort, his family, in the meantime, arriving safely. At the same time, a neighbor, Mr. Jacob Lybarger, rolled his infant daughter in a small bed and took it on his back, proceeding rapidly on his way, followed by his wife, through the forest by narrow Indian trails. From the speed made by her husband, Mrs. Lybarger supposed the danger very imminent. Calling to her husband, who was some distance in advance, she said: “Jake–Jake, are you afraid?” He promptly responded, “No,” and they hurried forward in the narrow path. In his flight, he dropped the infant, and his wife, coming up in haste, stumbled over it, exclaiming” “Jake, Jake, you need not tell me you are not afraid, for you have lost Maria out of the bed, and you didn’t know it.” The little daughter was speedily replaced, survived the war, and upon arriving at womanhood, became the wife of the late Justus S. Weatherbee.
After the close of the war, Mr. Finley continued to reside on his farm until December, 1825, when he deceased, aged about fifty-nine years. During the early part of his residence on the Lake Fork, it was navigable for small craft to the present site of Tylertown, known as Finley’s bridge, where a structure of that sort spans the stream. Here the pioneers landed, making their way by forest paths to Orange, Montgomery, Perry, Vermillion and Mohican townships.
His family consisted of James, Benjamin, John, Hannah, Sarah, Abner, Rachel, Elizabeth, and Mary. James resides in Madison county, Missouri; Benjamin and John are deceased; Hannah (widow Glenn,) resides in Urbana, Illinois; Sarah, wife of Daniel Pocock, resides near Hayesville; Abner lives near Plympton, Holmes county, Ohio; Rachel, wife of Sparks Bird, near Mohicanville, Ashland county, Ohio.; Elizabeth, wife of James Pocock, in Hayesville, Ohio; Mary, wife of Elijah Pocock, died near Hayesville.
Mrs. Mary Finley, wife of Alexander Finley, deceased March 23, 1856, aged about seventy-nine years.
Mine La-Motte, April 10th, 1876.
George W. Hill, Esq.
I was absent when your letter arrived, which accounts for not being answered sooner. Jerome settled on Mohican. When we came to the country, he was living at Jerometown, in a small cabin, a short distance from the Indian houses. He cultivated some six or eight acres of land, kept a few horses, cattle, and swine. He and the Indians did not get along well. They wished him to divide the products of his farm with them. This he refused to do, and the consequence was, when they got bad whiskey they whipped him. He built a cabin near the trail, on the east side of the stream, at the foot of Main street, in the present village of Jeromeville, having bought the land where Jeromeville now stands, where he kept a house of entertainment. In 1812, when the Indians were removed, he said he gave his squaw the privilege of going or staying with him. She chose to go with the Indians. He afterwards married a white woman. He sold his farm to Mr. Deardorff, and settled at Huron, in Huron county, and shortly after died. He commenced trading with the Indians when seventeen years old; but how long he continued a trader, I do not know. He was with the Indians in Wayne’s campaign, but whether he was with them in Harmar’s and St. Clair’s, I do not know. The Indians did not have much cleared land. I never saw their field, but it was situated out of sight of the village. I think they had only a few small patches. The cleared land around the village was a lawn, well set with blue grass, and contained an occasional tree and a few shrubs–perhaps amounting to eight or ten acres. I was in the village during the residence of the Indians, some three or four times. It consisted of some fine cabins, about sixteen by eighteen feet, one story high, and a number of small huts or wigwams. The council house, I think, was a temporary building, built lodge fashion. I do not recollect of having seen it. I saw the wigwam of captain Pipe. It was within the cleared space of the village. I have no recollection of wife or children. He appeared to be upwards of fifty years old. Was a tall, dark, and straight Indian. I never talked with him, perhaps father did, but I think not much, as Pipe was a surly, unrelenting enemy of the whites, and had little intercourse with them. I think he left early in the summer of 1812. I have no knowledge of Captain Pipe, jr. The Captain Pipe, jr. of Greentown, of whom you speak, must have been some other Pipe–perhaps a son. I know that the Captain Pipe I describe resided in Jerometown in the years 1809-10-11. I believe there was more Captain Pipes than one. I think Jerome said the Indians had been on Mohican about ten or twelve years previous to the white settlement; but of this I am not positive.
Very respectfully, yours,
The above is a letter from James Finley, in answer to one addressed him by the author, on the subject of the Indian settlement at Jerometown, asking him to be more definite concerning Jerome and Captain Pipe. It seems that Jerome had at first a cabin in or near the Indian village, but in consequence of bad whisky, failed to agree with his red brethren. Mr. Finley remembers the wigwam of old Captain Pipe, but fails to recollect his wife or children. It is probable that Pipe lived alone. Captain Pipe jr., of Greentown, was undoubtedly his son. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)
JOHN FINLEY (Lake) p. 288(1)
John Finley was born in Knox county, Ohio, in 1806, came to Ashland county with his father in 1809, and settled on the farm now owned by Seibert & Austin, in Mohican township. In 1827 he married Sarah Baird, of Plain township, Wayne county, Ohio. He was engaged in farming all his life. In politics he was an old-line Whig until the Republican Party was organized, when he became a Republican, and voted with the party until his death, which occurred in 1865. His wife still survives him, and resides with her son, Luther C., in Lake township. John Finley was the father of seven children, Abner, who married Elizabeth Smith; Elizabeth, who married Isaac Rainey; Lusette, wife of Wesley Chesroun; Mary, deceased, who was the wife of Sparks Burd; Luther, who married Ann Plank, and afterwards married Anna M. Kithcart, and then Eliza J. Hootman; and Sarah, the wife of N. Richey. (Transcribed and contributed by Russ Shopbell)