Apakeesheek Grove, in La Salle county, lies three miles north of Holderman’s grove.
Adams’s Fork, a branch of the Skillet fork of the Little Wabash. It rises in the prairies of Marion county, passes southeast, across the corner of Jefferson, and enters the Skillet fork in Wayne. The land is well timbered and of a good quality.
Alabama Settlement, in the northeastern part of Union county, of about thirty families. The timber, chiefly white oak, with a thin soil.
ALBION, the seat of justice for Edwards county, situated in section two, of township two south, in range ten, east of the third principal meridian. It was laid out by Messrs. Birbeck and Flowers, in 1819, and settled principally by English emigrants. The situation is high and healthy. It contains three stores, three houses of entertainment, an ox flouring mill, a cotton gin and thirty or forty families. The court house is of brick, forty-four feet square, two stories, and finished. Albion is forty miles southwest of Vincennes.
Allen’s Prairie and Settlement, in Greene county, twelve miles northeasterly from Carrollton. The land is good, the prairie large, with good timber on the water courses.
Allison’s Prairie, (sometimes improperly spelt Ellison) in Lawrence county, five miles northeast from Lawrenceville. It is ten miles long, and five broad. The eastern part towards the Wabash, contains some wet land and purgatory swamps, but the principal part is a dry, sandy, and very rich soil, covered with well cultivated farms. Few tracts in Illinois are better adapted to corn than this. The population equals 200 families. This prairie was settled in 1816 and ’17, by emigrants from Ohio and Kentucky, and mostly of the religious sect known in the west by the name of Christians, and the settlement is sometimes called by that name. In a few years death had thinned their numbers. The purgatory swamps, as they are called, around the prairie, had a deleterious influence, and retarded the progress of population. In later years but little sickness has existed, and this settlement furnishes one of many evidences that upon the subjugation of the luxuriant vegetation with which our rich prairies are clothed, and the cultivation of the soil, sickly places will be changed to healthy ones.
Alton, an incorporated town on the bank of the Mississippi, is thought by many to possess advantages for commerce equal to any in the state. It is situated on fractional sections thirteen and fourteen, in township five north, in range ten west of the third principal meridian. It is two and a half miles above the mouth of the Missouri, and at the place where the curve of the Mississippi penetrates the furthest into Illinois, eighteen miles below the mouth of the Illinois river, and at the point where the commerce and business of the wide spread regions of the northeast, north, and northwest must arrive.
The legislature of Illinois have memorialised congress repeatedly to have the great national road, now constructing through Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois, cross the Mississippi at this place, and sanguine hopes are entertained that the rights of Illinois in this particular will be duly regarded.
Lower Alton has the best landing for steamboats on the east bank of the Mississippi, having a rock of level surface, of suitable height, forming a natural wharf. The state penitentiary has been established here, and many are sanguine that it will be the future seat of government.
One of the finest bodies of timber in the state surrounds it for several miles in extent, from which vast quantities of lumber may be produced. Bituminous coal exists in great abundance but a short distance from the town. Inexhaustible beds of limestone for building purposes, and easily quarried, are within its precincts. A species of free stone, easily dressed and used for monuments and architectural purposes, and that peculiar species of lime, used for water cement, are found in great abundance in the vicinity.
The corporate bounds extend two miles along the river, and half a mile back. The town plat is laid out by the proprietors upon a liberal scale.
There are five squares reserved for public purposes, a large reservation is made on the river for a public landing and promenade. Market street is 150 feet wide, other streets are one hundred, eighty, and sixty feet, according to the situation and public accommodation.
Alton, contained at the commencement of 1837, 20 wholesale and 32 retail stores and groceries, 8 attorneys, 7 physicians, 7 clergymen devoted to their calling, (besides several preachers of the gospel, who follow secular business during the week,) 4 hotels, 2 of which have large accommodations, a large steam flouring mill, four large slaughtering and packing houses for putting up pork, which do a large business, and mechanics’ shops of various descriptions.
There are three printing offices which issue weekly papers, the Spectator, Telegraph and Observer; besides the Illinois Temperance Herald issued monthly. There is a large temperance society, that holds monthly meetings; a lyceum that holds weekly meetings, and two schools.
The public buildings are four houses for public worship, and two others expected to be erected soon. The Baptist church has a large stone edifice, with a handsome spire, bell, clock and organ. The basement furnishes three store rooms in front for rent, and a Sunday school room, and a committee room in the rear. The Presbyterian church has a moderate sized stone edifice with a cupola and bell, and a basement Sunday school room. The Methodist Episcopal church has a neat framed edifice with a stone basement and a cupola. The Methodist Protestant church has a small stone building. The Protestant Episcopal church, the Unitarian church, and the German Evangelical church, each meet in private rooms prepared for the purpose.
Among the public institutions are a bank, (a branch of the state bank of Illinois,) an insurance office, a Masonic lodge of independent odd fellows, a lyceum and a mechanics’ association.
Depositories of the Illinois Bible, Sunday school, Tract, and Temperance societies are kept in this town for the supply of the state, and a spacious edifice, four stories high, with a front of hewn stone, is about to be erected by the citizens, by subscription, for which purpose two liberal and wealthy gentlemen have given a lot of the value of more than 5000 dollars. A large proportion of the funds for the erection of the building has been secured.
In no western town of the size, population, and business, has an equal amount been given by its citizens for religious and benevolent purposes within the last two years.
The state penitentiary is located in Alton. It has the warden’s house, guard house, twenty-four cells, and the exterior wall around the yard erected.
The rapidity with which Alton has grown up from a business state to its present prosperous condition has been hardly equalled in the enterprising West. Mercantile business was commenced here in 1831. Its facilities are now great. Real estate has risen here more than 1000 per cent, within two years. The prices of lots depend upon their location. The best stands for business near the river sell from 300 to 400 dollars per foot front. Lots more retired, for private residences, from 100 to 50 and 25 dollars per foot. Stores rent from 1500 to 400, and dwelling houses from 600 to 200 dollars. Some of the large wholesale stores do business from 250,000 to half a million of dollars annually.
Seven or eight steamboats are owned here in whole or in part, and arrivals and departures occur every day and at all times in the day during the season. Alton now commands a large proportion of the trade of the Upper Mississippi and Illinois rivers, and of the interior country for one hundred miles. Besides the public railroads that concentrate here, noticed under the head of “Internal Improvement,” a survey has been made and the stock taken for one from Alton to Springfield, 72 miles, which will open an important line of communication with the interior, and eventually become connected with the great line to the Atlantic cities.
The natural surface of much of the town site of Alton is broken by bluffs and ravines, but the enterprise of its citizens and the corporation is fast removing these inconveniences by grading down its hills and filling up its ravines. A contract of 60,000 dollars has recently been entered upon to construct a culvert over the little Piasau creek that passes through the centre of the town, over which will soon be built one of the most capacious and pleasant streets. Since its settlement the citizens of Alton have enjoyed as good health, as those in any river town in the West. Its population is about 2500.
We close this article with the following extract from Beck’s Gazetteer of Illinois and Missouri, written in 1821: “Alton, although yet small, possesses natural advantages rarely equalled. Situated as it is, at the junction of three large and navigable rivers; possessing a fine, commodious harbor, and landing for boats at all seasons of the year; surrounded by a fertile country, rapidly settling, it bids fair to become a populous, wealthy, and commercial town.”
Aikin’s Grove, in Ogle county, lies five miles southeast of Oregon city, and east of Rock river, on the road from Dixonville to Princeton and Peoria. Here are three or four small groves, and thirty families.
America, the former county seat of Alexander county, situated on the west bank of the Ohio, on the first high land, and twelve miles above its mouth. The landing at this place is much injured by a sand bar.
Appanooce, a town site and post office on the Mississippi, in Hancock county, ten miles above Commerce, and eighteen miles northwest from Carthage.
Apple Creek post office. (See Waverley.)
Apple Creek Prairie, in Greene county, lies north of Apple creek, to the left of the road from Carrollton to Jacksonville. It is ten miles long, and from two to four miles wide, of good quality, and spread over withlarge farms, and populous settlements.
Apple River, in Jo Daviess county, rises near the boundary line, where its branches interlock with the waters of the Pee-ka-ton-o-kee, runs a southwestern course about forty-five miles, and enters the Mississippi twenty miles below Galena. It is a rocky and rapid stream, with good mill seats, and fifty yards wide at its mouth. The bottoms are excellent land. The uplands hilly and broken. Large bodies of timber are on its banks. Towards its heads is a fine undulating country. Apple Creek rises near the borders of Sangamon county, runs a southwestern course through the southeastern part of Morgan into Greene county, and enters the Illinois river in section thirty-six, fractional township eleven north, fourteen west. It has several tributaries, which are noticed under their respective names, and which water a valuable tract of country, with a large population.
Arm of the Grand Prairie, in Jefferson county, lies eight miles northwest from Mount Vernon. The soil is tolerably good, and the settlement contains about fifty families.
Armstrong Post Office is in Wabash county, seven miles above Mount Carmel.
Arrowsmith’s Settlement is towards the east side of Mercer county.
Ashmore’s Settlement, in Coles county, fifteen miles north of Charleston, and on the east side of the Embarras. Timber and prairie good.
Ashton, a post office and town site in Adams county, nine miles south of Quincy.
Athens, a village in Sangamon county, on the east side, and four miles from the Sangamon river, and fifteen miles north from Springfield. It has several stores, one steam mill for sawing and flouring, and about seventy-five families. It has timber of the Sangamon on the west, and the prairies east, with a large settlement around.
Athens, a town site on the left bank of the Kaskaskia river, in St. Clair county, known as Hill’s Ferry.
Atherton’s Settlement, in Alexander county, two miles east from Unity, containing about one-hundred families. The upland tolerably good.
Atlas, a small town in Pike county, situated on the northwest quarter of section twenty-seven, township six south, range five west. It is on a handsome tract of ground, under the bluffs, half a mile from Snycartee Slough, which is navigable for steamboats to this place, in high water.
Aubuchon, a passage from the Mississippi to the Kaskaskia river, about four miles above the town of Kaskaskia.
Augusta, a town site and post office in Hancock county, on southwest section twenty-three, township three north, range five west, sixteen miles southwest from Carthage. It has several families, and a respectable school.
Augusta, a town site on the west bank of the Illinois river, in Pike county, ten miles east of Pittsfield, and twenty-two miles from Jacksonville. It is opposite the termination of the Jacksonville, Lynnville and Winchester railroad, which is now under contract. Another company has been chartered to extend this line from Augusta, by Pittsfield and Atlas to Louisiana, Mo., from whence another line of railroad has been projected and a charter granted by the legislature of Missouri, across to Columbia and the Missouri river.
Auburn, a town site, in Sangamon county, on the north side of Sugar creek, on the stage road, and contemplated railroad route from Alton to Springfield. It has two stores, one grocery, one tavern, and ten or twelve families, surrounded with a beautiful prairie.
Au Sable, [Fr. sandy – gravelly,] a small stream in the eastern part of La Salle county. It rises near the west fork of Du Page, runs south mostly through prairie, and enters the Illinois three miles below the junction of the Des Plaines, and Kankakee.
Au Sable Grove is in the northeastern part of La Salle county, at the heads of the Au Sable creek. Here is a fine body of timber surrounded with an extensive and rich prairie.
Aviston, a town site and post office, in Clinton county, on the Vincennes and St. Louis stage road, with a dozen houses.
Bachelder’s Grove, in Cook county, eighteen miles southwest of Chicago, contains about two sections of timber, and a large settlement.
Badgley’s Settlement, in St. Clair county, five miles northwesterly from Belleville, one of the oldest American settlements in the county.
Bailey’s Point, a branch of the Vermilion, and a settlement in La Salle county, fourteen miles southwest from Ottawa. Here is a small tract of excellent timber, surrounded with the choicest prairie. The settlement contains about twenty families.
Baker’s Grove, in Ogle county, lies bordering on Rock river, between Grand Detour and Oregon city. It is eight miles long and three miles wide; timber good and land excellent.
Bankstone’s Fork, in Gallatin county, rises in the interior, runs a southeastern course, and enters the South Fork of Saline creek, fourteen miles above Equality. It has a fine country on its borders, and a large settlement.
Banning’s Settlement, in Shelby county, near the Kaskaskia river, twelve miles south of Shelbyville. The land is good, and plenty of timber and prairie. The bottom on the opposite side of the river is over-flowed in high water.
Barney’s Prairie, in Wabash county, seven miles north of Mount Carmel, is a good tract of land well cultivated.
Barbee’s Settlement, seven miles northwest of Palestine, in Crawford county, with timber and prairie.
Bartlett’s Settlement, in the southwestern part of McDonough county, on Crooked creek, fifteen miles from Macomb, the land is good, and the settlement extensive.
Bath, a post office and settlement on the south side of Cass county, on the road from Jacksonville to Beardstown.
Batcheldorsville post office is on the east side of Coles county, seven miles from Charleston.
Bay Creek rises in the prairie’s towards the eastern part of Pike county, and running westward enters Calhoun county and forms a kind of bay at its mouth, which is navigable for some miles. The land on its borders is generally good, except about the bluffs, where it is broken.
Beardstown, the seat of justice for Cass county, is situated on the Illinois river, twenty-five miles northeast from Jacksonville, on fractional township eighteen north, and twelve west. It is on elevated ground, sandy soil, and entirely above the highest floods. It has thirteen stores, four of which do commission and forwarding business, three groceries, two druggists, four physicians, one large hotel, and several boarding houses, two bakeries, two shoemakers, three tailors, two blacksmiths, two-cabinet makers, one silversmith, one watchmaker, four carpenters and housejoiners, three cooper shops, one painter and glazier, two tinners, two brick and one stone masons, one carriage maker, two steam flouring mills, with six pairs of stones, one steam sawmill, one steam distillery, and a large brewery, one lawyer, one minister of the gospel, and about 1,000 inhabitants. There is a Methodist and an Episcopalian congregation, but no house of worship.
Canal project. A company has been chartered and surveys made preparatory to the construction of a canal from this place to Sangamon river, at Huron, and from thence to improve the river by slack water navigation to the head. And it has been ascertained that a water communication may be opened at moderate expense across the state to the Vermilion of the Wabash. The construction of that portion of the canal from Beardstown to the Sangamon river can be easily effected.
Bear Creek, a small branch of the Macoupin, twelve miles west from Carlinville.
Bear Creek heads in String prairie, and entetd Apple creek, in Greene county. A considerable settlement is on its borders.
Bear Creek, a small stream and branch of the middle fork of Shoal creek, and a settlement in Montgomery county. The land is rather level, and inclined to be wet, but fertile.
Bear Creek, a small stream in the southeastern part of Sangamon county, with a considerable settlement. It enters the South Fork of Sangamon from the south side.
Bear Creek, a small stream that rises in the north part of Gallatin county, runs south, and enters the North fork of Saline creek, ten miles above Equality. Here is much good land, and a large settlement.
Bear Creek, is a fine stream in Adams county, with two principal forks. South Fork rises in one north, six west, North Fork rises in five north, seven west, in Hancock county, and interlocks with the western branch of Crooked creek. They unite in section thirteen, two north, eight west. After passing through the bluffs into the Mississippi bottom, this stream divides into two prongs; one runs a northwest course and enters the Mississippi – the other prong bears a little south of west, receiving several small streams, and enters Boston Bay, one mile above Quincy. This stream is about forty yards wide at its separation, and has a number of mill seats. Few bodies of land in the state equal that which lines its banks. Large settlements extend along its timber.
Bear Prairie is a small tract in Wayne county, five miles east of Fairfield, with twenty families.
Beaucoup is a large settlement on Beaucoup creek, in Washington county, south of New Nashville. The land is a mixture of timber and prairie, and good second rate soil.
Beaucoup Settlement is in Jackson county, twelve miles northeast from Brownsville, between the Big Beaucoup creek and Big Muddy river. The land is rich, heavily timbered, with a considerable settlement.
Beaver Creek, called also Stinking creek, rises in Bond county, runs south into Clinton county, crosses the Vincennes and St. Louis road, four miles west of Carlyle, and empties into Shoal creek, in the northeastern part of township one north, four west. It is about twenty-five miles in length, is a sluggish, muddy stream, and waters a fine tract of country. The settlement extends its whole length.
Beaver Creek rises in Boone county, runs southwest and enters Kishwaukee, twelve miles above its mouth. It is sparsely timbered with walnut, linden, oaks of various species, and oak openings. Soil, sand and clay; prairies, rolling; fine springs.
Beaver Creek, a branch of Iroquois river in Iroquois county.
Beck’s Creek heads in the western part of Shelby county, runs southeast, and enters the Kaskaskia in the northern part of Fayette, eighteen miles above Vandalia. It is a mill stream, has much good land on its banks, and rolling prairie adjoining. The timber is oak of various kinds, walnut, locust, coffee nut, cherry, elm, etc.
Begg’s Settlement, in the southeast part of Union county, on the waters of Cash river. It is a fine, undulating, timbered region/and contains about 120 families.
Bellefountaine, a large spring and settlement in Monroe county, near Waterloo. In the vicinity of this place, several attacks were made by the Indians, forty years since; some of the inhabitants were killed and others taken prisoner.
Belleville, the seat of justice for St. Clair county, is situated on sections twenty-two, twenty-three, twenty-seven, and twenty-eight, of township one north, in range eight west of the third principal meridian. It is a neat flourishing village, on high ground, six miles from the American bottom, and thirteen miles east southeast from St. Louis. The public buildings are a handsome court house of brick, finished in a superior style, a brick jail, a clerk’s office, a public hall belonging to a library company, and a framed Methodist house of worship. It has two select schools; one for boarders half a mile distant. There are two large merchant steam flouring mills, with six pairs of stones, a brewery, a steam distillery, a wool carding machine, eight carpenters, one cabinet maker, five blacksmith’s shops, one tinner’s shop, two silversmiths, three wagon makers, one turner, and wheelwright, two shoemakers’ shops, one millwright, two coopers, two saddlers, two tailors, one bakery, one high school, one common school, a Presbyterian, Baptist and a Methodist congregation, and about 700 inhabitants, of which about 100 are Germans, twenty French, and the residue Americans. There are three lawyers, four physicians, and four resident ministers of the gospel. It is surrounded with a rich and extensive agricultural settlement, and a fine body of timber. Belleville contains a printing office, which issues the St. Clair Gazette, and is a place of considerable business.
Belleview Prairie, is a rich, dry, prairie, at the foot of the bluffs, in Calhoun county. It is six miles long, and three fourths of a mile wide, with a gradual descent from the bluffs. Belleview post office, is in this settlement, which contains about forty families.
Belvidere, a village of a dozen families, two stores, a post office, saw and grist mill, and rapidly increasing, in the western part of Boone county on the stage road from Chicago to Galena. It is situated on Squaw prairie, and has a delightful appearance. Near the town site is a mound, fifty rods long and about thirty rods wide, elevated seventy feet above the bottom lands of Rock river. On the top of this mound is the cemetery of an Indian called Big Thunder. He died about the period of the Sauk war in 1831 or ’32, and was placed in a sitting posture on a flag mat, wrapped in blankets, his scalping knife by his side to cut the plugs of tobacco that are offered him. Over the body is constructed a covering of wood and earth, with an opening in front, where Big Thunder may be seen sitting with his tobacco lying before him. The Indians still visit the place to replenish his stores of tobacco, whiskey, &c. The citizens of this region are about to erect a College edifice on this spot, in a vault under which the bones of Big Thunder will repose unmolested. A charter was granted for the purpose at the recent session of the legislature. The Rev. S. S. Whitman, formerly Professor in the Hamilton Literary and Theological Institution, New York, is engaged in the enterprise.
Beman’s Mill and settlement on Apple creek, in Greene county, seven miles northwest from Carrollton.
Bennington, a post office in the western part of Fulton county.
Berlin, a town site and post office, in Sangamon county, on the west side of Island Grove, seventeen miles west from Springfield, on the main road to Jacksonville.
Bernadotte, a town on Spoon river, in Fulton county, on section nineteen, five north, two west, 12 miles southwest from Lewistown. It has one sawmill, one flouring mill with three runs of stones, three stores, two groceries, one tavern, and a common school. Spoon river can easily be made navigable to this place.
Berry’s Settlement is in the forks of Crooked creek, in Clinton county, eight miles southeasterly from Carlyle.
Bethel, a populous settlement in St. Clair county, ten miles north of Belleville. Here is a Baptist meeting house and congregation, and a moral, religious society of industrious farmers.
Bethany, a post-office and settlement, in Sangamon county, twenty-one miles southeast from Springfield, on the road to Shelbyville.
Big Barren Grove is in the western part of Putnam and Eastern part of Henry county, 25 miles long, and from 2 to 3 miles wide; and forms the dividing ridge between the waters of Spoon river and the Winnebago Swamp. The timber is scattering, resembling barrens, whh various kinds of oaks, hickory, &c. The west end is called Black Oak Ridge where a colony from Wethersheld, Con., is settled.
Big Bay Creek, a small stream that rises in the north eastern part of Johnson county. It takes a southeastern direction receiving Cedar creek in that county, and Little Bay creek in Pope county, and enters the Ohio about six miles below Golconda. Its bottoms are wide, and the bluffs rather broken; and towards the Ohio the bottom land produces large quantities of cypress with other growth.
Big Bottom is a settlement in the northwest corner of Alexander county, on Clear creek. The soil is first rate.
Big Beaucoup Creek, one of the four heads of Big Muddy river. It rises in the southeastern part of Washington county, township three south, in range two west, runs a south course through Perry county and enters the Big Muddy in section thirty-five, eight south, two west, eight miles above Brownsville. It has much good land on its borders, some excellent prairies, and fine timber, consisting of oak, hickory, ash, poplar, elm, walnut, etc. The bottom land is rather wet. Big Beaucoup is navigable for flat boats.
Big Creek, in Pope county, rises in the northern part of the county, runs south, and enters the Ohio, fifteen miles above Golconda.
Big Creek, in Crawford county, a small stream that enters the Embarras in the southwestern part of the county.
Big Creek is a small stream that rises on the Grand Prairie, in Edgar county, runs a southeast direction, passes through a corner of Clark, and enters the Wabash near the point at which the dividing line of the two states leaves that river. The land through which it passes is good, well timbered, and densely settled with a farming population.
Big Creek, in Effingham county, a branch of the Little Wabash, running a southeast course through Brockett’s settlement to that river.
Big Creek, in Macon county, a branch of the North Fork of Sangamon. It is formed from Long creek, and Findley’s fork.
Big Creek, a stream in Fayette county, which rises in the Grand prairie, northeast from Vandalia, crosses the national road twelve miles east of that place, runs southwest, and enters the Kaskaskia in the lower part of the county.
Big Creek, in the western part of Crawford county, runs south and enters the Embarras.
Big Creek, in Fulton county, a small stream that rises near Canton, runs southwest, and enters Spoon river one mile above the road from Rushville to Lewistown. A considerable settlement and good land towards its head.
Big Grove, in Champaign county, is on a branch of the Salt Fork of the Vermilion river, and is about the centre of the county. It is a body of heavy timbered, rich land, twelve miles long, and of an average of three miles in width. The country around is most delightful, the prairie is elevated, dry, and of a very rich soil, the water is good, and the country very healthy. The population at Big Grove must now exceed 200 families.
Big Grove, in Kane county, is on the South Fork of the Kishwaukee. The surface around undulating, and the soil a black sandy loam. Stratified limestone, flint, pebbles and coal abound in this region.
Big Grove, in La Salle county, twenty miles northeast from Ottawa, is about three miles in diameter. The land in the timber is wet, but the surrounding prairie is dry, undulating and rich.
Big Grove, a timbered tract, or rather several groves, connected for twelve miles in length, in the southwestern part of McLean county, on the third principal meridian, and township twenty-one north. It is a fine tract of country, rich in soil and well timbered, on the Kickapoo creek. Bloomington, the county seat, is eighteen mile from the heart of the settlement which contains from one hundred and fifty to two hundred families.
Big Grove, a beautiful, high, undulating, and rich tract of timber, near some of the heads of Spoon river in Henry county. It is twelve or fifteen miles long, and about three miles wide, surrounded with extensive and rather level prairies.
Big Mound Prairie, in Wayne county, is five miles west from Fairfield, three miles in extent, undulating surface, thin soil, and has about fifty families. A large mound gives the name to this prairie.
Big Muddy River, (called by the French who discovered it, Riviera au Vase, or Vaseux,) a considerable stream in the southwestern part of the state. It has four principal heads, which, rising in Washington Jefferson, and Hamilton counties, and uniting in Jackson county, form the main stream. They are the Beaucoup, Little Muddy, and Middle Fork. The general course of the stream is southwest, and it is navigable some distance above Brownsville. Below Brownsville it turns south to the county line, makes a short bend, and enters the Mississippi near the northeastern corner of township eleven south, in range four west of the third principal meridian. Its bluffs generally are abrupt, the land along its borders and branches undulating, and for most of its length well timbered. Valuable salines exist on its banks and are worked about Brownsville, where there is an inexhaustible bed of bituminous coal. Native copper has been found on its banks in detached masses. It runs through a fine agricultural and grazing country.
Big Neck is a settlement in one south, six west, at the head of the South Fork of Bear creek, in Adams, county: a tract of good land.
Big Prairie, in White county, between the Little and Big Wabash, about three miles in diameter, and nearly all in a state of cultivation. The soil is sandy, but of great fertility.
Big Rock Creek, is a branch of Fox river in Kane county.
Big Woods, a large tract of timbered land, lying on the east side of Fox river, in Kane county, and provided the surveys were run it would lie mostly in townships 38 and 39 N., range 8 east. It is about 10 miles in length and from 4 to 5 miles in width. The timber consists chiefly of white, black, yellow, and bur oaks, sugar maple, linden, black and white walnut or butternut, hickory, ash of various species, poplar, ironwood, elm, cherry, etc. The soil is generally a dark sandy loam; sometimes approaches to clay, generally a little undulating, but in some places quite level and a little wet. The Big Woods are thickly settled on all sides, as is the prairie country adjoining.
Bethel a post office and town site with a dozen families in Morgan county, 12 miles west of Jacksonville.
Bethesda, a post office in Coles county, 8 miles west of Charleston.
Birch Creek, is a small stream that rises in Morgan county, and enters Apple creek in Greene county. The settlement contains about twenty-five families.
Blackberry Creek, in Kane county, rises in the central part of the county, runs south and enters Fox river near the south line of the county. Groves of timber, barrens, and rich undulating prairie along its course.
Black Creek is an insignificant stream, in Pike county, that enters the Snycartee.
Black Partridge Creek, a post office, and a small stream in the upper part of Tazewell county, that enters the Illinois river.
Bloomfield, a town and post office in Edgar county, 10 miles north of Paris, with three stores, two groceries, one tavern, one physician, various mechanics, and about 20 families.
Blooming Grove, a tract of timbered land and a large settlement, in McLean county, adjoining Bloomington. It is about six miles long from northwest to southeast, and varying in width from one to four miles, containing about twelve square miles of beautiful timber, with a large settlement of industrious farmers around it. Nearly all the land is already occupied with settlers, a majority of whom are from Ohio. Both timbered land and prairie are first rate.
Bloomingdale is the locality of a colony in Tazewell county.
Bloomington, is the seat of justice for McLean county and is beautifully situated on the margin of a fine prairie and north side of Blooming-Grove, on section four, township twenty north, range two east. It has eight or ten stores, three groceries, two taverns, two lawyers, three physicians, a handsome academy building, various mechanics, two steam mills for sawing, a Presbyterian and a Methodist meeting house, and ministers, and about 700 population. The surrounding country is most delightful.
Block House, a name given to an American settlement formed about forty years since, in the American bottom, in the southwestern part of St. Clair county. At the foot of the bluffs, near this, is a spring that regularly ebbs and flows, once in twenty-four hours.
Blue Creek, in the upper part of Tazewell county, rises in the prairie, runs west, and enters the Illinois below Spring bay.
Bluffdale, a settlement in Greene county, ten miles west of Carrollton, and under the bluffs that overhang the Illinois bottom. The land is rich, dry, and beautifully situated for six miles in extent, under overhanging bluffs and precipices from which springs of “crystal waters” gush forth. The settlement is generally arranged along the bluffs from Apple creek to the Macoupin, from three to four miles from the Illinois river, and consists of fifty or sixty families. The settlement of Bluffdale has two stores, one grocery, one tavern, one minister of the gospel, and a Baptist congregation, one post office, one school, and various mechanics.
Blue Point, a point of timber projecting into the prairie, in Effingham county, five miles north west of Ewington.
Blue River. There are two small streams of this name in Pike county distinguished as Big and Little Blue. They rise in the middle of the county, run a southeast course and enter the Illinois, in three south, two west, about six miles apart. The land through which they pass is fertile.
Bolive, a town site in the forks of Sangamon river, ten miles southeast from Springfield, surrounded with a large and flourishing settlement.
Boltinghouse Prairie, lies south of Albion, in Edwards county. It is about four miles long and three broad, dry, undulating surface, and good soil.
Bon Pas (Bumpau,) a small village near the creek of the same name in the northeast part of White county.
Bon Pas, a creek that divides Wabash and Edwards counties. It rises near the Vincennes road, fifteen miles west of Lawrenceville, and taking a southeasterly course, enters the Wabash river in section fourteen, township three south, range fourteen west of the second principal meridian, at the corner of Wabash and White counties. Its banks are low and swampy.
Bon Pas Prairie, four miles northeast from Albion, in Edwards county, and about two miles in diameter. It contains good land, and a settlement.
Bon Pas Settlement, near the southeast corner of Edwards county, between the Bon Pas creek and Little Wabash river. It is a timbered tract, good land, and contains about sixty families.
Boston Bay is an arm of the Mississippi, above Quincy in Adams county, which, at a tolerable stage of water, furnishes a fine harbor for boats.
Boston, a town site in Canaan settlement, Shelby county, twelve miles north of Shelbyville, township thirteen north, four east, on the west fork of the Kaskaskia.
Bostwick’s Settlement, is three miles northeast from Hillsboro’ in Montgomery county, a dry, rolling, fertile, prairie.
Bottom Settlement, commences in the northwestern part of Union county, and extends down the Mississippi. This bottom is umbered, and is from three to four miles wide but part of it is wet and inundated. The settlement lies chiefly along the bank of the river.
Bottom Settlement, in Alexander county; lies along the Mississippi, on rich alluvial land, heavily timbered, and contains sixty or seventy families.
Bradley’s Settlement is at the head of Kincaid creek, in the north part of Jackson county. It is a timbered region, tolerable land, and has twenty-five or thirty families.
Brattleville, a post office, in Carter’s settlement, in McDonough county, twelve miles south of Macomb, and on the mail road to Rushville.
Bridge’s Settlement, in Johnson county, ten miles west from Vienna, contains some tolerably good land. Population about sixty families.
Brighton, a town site and post office in Brown’s prairie, the southwest corner of Macoupin county, 12 miles north of Alton. It has two stores, a castor oil factory and a dozen families.
Broad Run, a small stream in Coles county. It rises in the Grand prairie, and runs southwest into the Kaskaskia. Settlement small.
Brocket’s Settlement on the west side of the Little Wabash, eight miles southwesterly from Ewington, in Effingham county. The surface is tolerably level and the settlement contains forty or fifty families.
Brooklyn, a town site laid off on the bank of the Mississippi river, in St. Clair county, opposite North St. Louis.
Brown’s Point, a settlement at the head of timber in a large prairie in Morgan county, ten miles south of Jacksonville.
Brown’s Prairie, in the corner of Macoupin and Greene counties and extending into Madison county, between Wood river and the Piasau. It is rich, dry soil, and is about twelve miles north from Alton.
BROWNSVILLE, the seat of of justice for Jackson county, is situated on the north side of Big Muddy river, on section two, nine south, and three west of the third principal meridian. It is twelve miles by land, and twenty-five by water from the Mississippi, and is surrounded by hills. The Big Muddy Salines and coal banks are near this place. The population is about twenty families.
Bralette’s Creek rises in the north part of Edgar county, and runs eastward across a portion of Indiana into the Wabash. The timber on its banks is chiefly oak. The settlement is in the forks, and along the north fork of the creek. The land is good. Prairie predominates over the timbered land. The post office is called Bloomfield.
Brush Creek rises in the east part of Shelby county, runs a southwest course, and empties into the Kaskaskia river, in the south part of the county. The timber is indifferent, and the prairies are level and wet.
Brush Creek rises in the prairies in the south part of Sangamon county, runs north and enters Horse creek, a little above its junction with the Sangamon.
Brush Hill post office is in Cook county, in the northeast corner of township thirty-eight north, range eleven east, and sixteen miles west of Chicago.
Brush Prairie Creek, a trifling stream in Franklin county, rises in a prairie of the same name, runs west, and enters the middle fork of Muddy river. Good timbered land.
Brushy Fork, a small branch of the Embarras on the east side, and in the northern part of Lawrence county. It runs a south course, and enters the main stream six miles above Lawrenceville. The settlement is new, containing twenty-five or thirty families, and a portion of the country barrens.
Brushy Fork, a small stream that rises in the prairie, near the borders of Edgar county, and taking a southwest course, enters the Embarras in Coles county, fourteen miles above Charleston. On the east side the land is rolling and fertile, and there is a settlement of fifteen or twenty families; on the west side the land is level and rather wet.
Brushy Prairie, on the east side of the Little Wabash, in Wayne county, eleven miles east of Fairfield, and contains about fifty families.
Buck-heart Prairie, in Fulton county, is northeast from Lewistown, and joins Canton prairie. It is six or eight miles in extent, and has a considerable settlement.
Buck-heart Creek rises near the South Fork of the Sangamon river, runs northwest, and enters the North Fork. It has a considerable settlement.
Buck-heart Grove, at the head of Buck-heart creek, in Sangamon county, fifteen or twenty miles southeast from Springfield. It is a fine tract of timber, about 1000 acres, surrounded with high prairie and settlement.
Buck Prairie lies in Edwards county, six miles northeast from Albion, and is about two miles and a half across.
Buck-horn Prairie is in Morgan county, six or eight miles south of Jacksonville. The soil is rich, but its surface is rather level and wet.
Buckle’s Grove, at the head of the north branch of Salt creek, in McLean county, contains about twelve sections of timbered land, surrounded with rich prairie. It is in twenty-two north, four east, and is about six or eight miles east from Bloomington. Timber principally oak, with some sugar maple, and the land around it rather level.
Buffaloe Grove, in Jo Daviess county, twelve miles north of Dixon’s ferry, and on the road to Galena. It contains four or five sections of timber, surrounded with the richest prairie, a post office called Buffaloe Grove, and a town site called St. Marion.
Buffaloe-heart Grove lies in Sangamon county, fourteen miles northeast from Springfield and six miles southeasterly from Elk-heart grove, which it resembles. It is about three miles long, and one mile and a half wide, containing about four sections of timber and twenty-five or thirty families. The rushes, which cover the prairies around, furnish winter food for cattle.
Buffaloe Rock, a singular promontory on the north side of the Illinois river, in La Salle county, six miles below Ottawa. It rises fifty or sixty feet nearly perpendicular on three sides, and contains on its surface about six hundred acres of timber and prairie.
Bullard’s Prairie, sometimes called Gardner’s prairie, in the western part of Lawrence county, sixteen miles from Lawrenceville. It is eight or ten miles long, and two miles wide, second rate soil, and has considerable settlements on its borders.
Bullbona Grove in sixteen north, eight east, in Putnam county. Prairie rich and undulating.
Buncombe Settlement, in Johnson county, eight miles northwest from Vienna, contains forty families; soil rather broken, thin and rocky.
Bunker Hill, an elevated town site in the south part of Macoupin county, section, fourteen, seven north, eight west, in a large undulating prairie.
Bureau Creek rises in the northern part of Putnam county, runs southwest, receives Little Bureau, turns thence southeast, and enters the Illinois river nearly opposite Hennepin. It is a fine mill stream, with a bold current, rock, gravel, and sand in its bottom, and receives a number of branches. About the bluffs of the Illinois the surface of the land is broken, but in general it is excellent the whole length of the stream. Between its branches are fine prairies, undulating, rich, and dry, and along its borders is much excellent timber.
Burnside’s Settlement, in Clinton county, five miles north of Carlyle, called by some the Irish settlement. Burnt Prairie, in the northwestern part of White, and extending into Wayne county, is about two miles in diameter, contains some good land and a dense settlement. Here is a post office and town site.
Burnt Prairie, in Edwards county, four miles northwest from Albion. It is about six miles long and two miles wide, interspersed with small groves and points of timber. The soil is good, and the population dense. Here is a windmill erected by a Mr. Clark, an English gentleman, which does good business as a grist mill.
Byron, a town site in Champaign county in Big Grove, three and half miles northwest from Urbanna, with three or four families.
Cache Mere, a small lake in McHenry county.
Cadwell’s Branch, a small branch of the Mauvaiseterre, which it enters from the south, ten miles below Jacksonville. It is a mill stream and rocky.
Cahokia, and old French village, and one of the earliest in Illinois, situated in the American bottom, in St. Clair county, five miles south of Wiggin’s Ferry, and ten miles north of west from Belleville.
The Cahokias, (or according to the orthography of the early French explorers, the Caoquias,) one of the tribes of the great nation of Illini, had made this a resting place for a long time previous to the discovery of the Mississippi, probably on account of the game which abounded in the vicinity. It is probable that the first settlement was made here by the French, shortly after La Salle descended the Mississippi, in 1683.
Charlevoix, who visited the place in 1721, expresses his astonishment that his countrymen had pitched upon so inconvenient a situation, being “half a league” from the river. He says, however, the people told him that the Mississippi once washed the foot of the village, but that in three years it had receded half a league, and that the people were talking of removing to a more eligible situation.
In 1766, it contained forty families; and at the commencement of the revolutionary war they had increased to fifty. This is about their present number. It was once the seat of a considerable fur trade.
Both the Spanish and French governments, in forming settlements on the Mississippi, had special regard to convenience of social intercourse, and protection from the Indians. All their settlements were required to be in the form of villages or towns, and lots of a convenient size for a door yard, garden and stable yard were provided for each family. To each village were granted two tracts of land at convenient distances, for “commonfields” and “commons.”
A common field is a tract of land of several hundred acres, enclosed in common by the villagers, each person furnishing his proportion of labor, and each family possessing individual interest in a portion of the field, marked off, and bounded from the rest. Ordinances were made to regulate the repairs of fences, the time of excluding cattle in the spring, and the time of gathering the crop and opening the field for the range of cattle in the fall. Each plat of ground in the common field was owned in fee simple, by the person to whom granted, subject to sale and conveyance, the same as any landed property.
A common is a tract of land granted to the town for wood and pasturage, in which each owner of a village lot has a common, but not an individual right. In some cases this tract embraced several thousand acres. The “common” attached to Cahokia, extends up the prairie opposite St. Louis.
Cahokia creek rises in Macoupin county, runs in a southwesterly direction through Madison into St. Clair county, and empties into the Mississippi two miles below the ferry at St. Louis. Through the American bottom the course of this stream is very sluggish, and meanders greatly. A mill dam backs up the water fifteen miles. Near its borders are several lakes and ponds rendering this portion of the American bottom unhealthy. Formerly this creek passed Cahokia village, and entered the Mississippi further down, but a mischievous Frenchman, from some pique against the village, cut a channel from the creek to the river, and formed its present outlet. Along its borders are sixty or seventy mounds of various shapes and sizes.
Cairo is located near the mouth of the Ohio and extends across the point of land from river to river. The termination of the great central railroad is to be at or near the site of Cairo.
Calamic, a stream at the south end of lake Michigan. It rises in Indiana, runs westward into Illinois, turns north and enters the lake. Much of the country near the lake is low and swampy. Further up are rapids and falls in the stream.
Caledonia, a town laid off on the bluffs of the Ohio in Alexander county, three miles above America. A wharf is here constructing to secure a good landing for boats which is wanted at America. It has two or three stores, a dozen families, and is thought to be an important site for business.
Calumet, a large stream that rises in Indiana, winds into Illinois, turns again and enters the lake Michigan, near the boundary line. Much of the country near the lake is low and swampy. Further up are rapids, and good water power.
Calumet, a town site with 8 or 10 houses and a post office near the mouth of the Calumet.
Camden, a town site at the mouth of the Illinois river in the southwest part of Green county.
Cameron’s Settlement, in Fulton county, eight miles northwest from Lewistown, is in a tract of good land, a mixture of timber and prairie, with a considerable population.
Campbell’s Island, in the Mississippi, ten miles above Rock Island, in the upper rapids of the Mississippi.
Camp Greek, a small stream in Randolph county, that enters the Kaskaskia river on the west side, in five south, eight west.
Camp Creek, is an insignificant stream that rises in the prairies which divide Hancock from Warren county, and runs west into the Mississippi.
Camp Creek in Mercer county, rises in the interior of Henry county, runs west and enters Edwards river in township fifteen north, range one west; high, rolling prairie, and Richland grove.
Camp Fork, a branch of Crooked creek in McDonouogh county, rises in Hickory grove, on the north side of seven north, two west, runs south, and unites with Drowning fork. The land on these creeks is of the first quality.
Canaan is a rich settlement in Shelby county, twelve miles north of Shelbyville: a very superior tract.
Canaan, a post office, in Rock Island county, 20 miles north of Stephenson.
Canteen Creek rises in ridge prairie, in the south part of Madison county, runs a western course, and enters the Cahokia creek in the American bottom. Little Canteen creek rises in St. Clair county, and enters the main creek about the bluffs.
Canteen Settlement, in Madison county, about six miles south of Edwardsville.
Canton, a pleasant town in Fulton county, on the borders of a large prairie, fifteen miles north of Lewistown on section twenty-seven, seven north, four east. It is a respectable town, has eight or ten stores, a large academy and a charter for a college, and a population of five or six hundred. The country around is high, undulating, fertile and healthy, with a due mixture of timber and prairie.
Canton Prairie, in Fulton county, commences near Spoon river and runs northward, dividing the waters that fall into Spoon river on the left, from those that enter the Illinois on the right, till it becomes lost in the interminable prairies on Rock river. At Canton it is from two to three miles in width, dry, undulating, and inexhaustibly rich. Further north it becomes inferior.
Cantrill’s Creek rises on the eastern side of Sangamon county, runs west, and enters Sangamon river about fifteen miles above Salt Fork. The land on this creek is rather level, the soil rich, and about equally divided into timber and prairie.
Cape au Gris. A small French settlement of this name, (which means Cape of Grit or Grindstone, from the rocks near,) was formed on the Mississippi, above the mouth of the Illinois, at the most southern bend of the river in Calhoun county, about forty years since. In 1811, it consisted of about twenty families, who had a village on the bank of the river, and cultivated a common field of about five hundred acres in the prairie, one mile from the river. They were driven off by the Indians during the last war with Great Britain. The American population began to enter this county, in 1818.
CARLINVILLE, the seat of justice of Macoupin county, is situated on the north side of the Lake Fork of the Macoupin, in a beautiful prairie. It is on section twenty-eight, ten north, seven west of the third principal meridian. Carlinville has several stores, one grocery, two lawyers, two physicians, and about 80 families, and is improving rapidly. The state roads from Vandalia to Carrollton, and from Springfield to Alton, intersect at this place. It is fifty-five miles northwest from Vandalia, forty-five miles southeast from Jacksonville, forty-five miles southwest from Springfield, thirty-five east of Carrollton, thirty-five miles north from Edwardsville, and thirty-five northeast from Alton. The country around Carlinville is proportionably divided into timber and prairie. A theological Seminary, under patronage of the Presbyterian Synod of Illinois is about to be established at this place, and the railroad from Alton to Springfield will pass through it.
CARLYLE, the seat of justice for Clinton county, is situated on the west side of the Kaskaskia river, 215 miles by water above its mouth, and on the Vincennes and St. Louis road. It was laid out as a town site, in 1818, on section eighteen, two north, two west, on elevated ground, on the border of a large prairie. The intersection of several public roads from different parts of the state, gives it an appearance of life and business, rarely to be seen in a place so remote from commercial advantages. Carlyle contains five stores, three taverns, a grist and saw mill by water power, and forty families. The court house is of wood.
CARMI, the seat of justice of White county, situated on the west bank of the Little Wabash, and nearly in the centre of the county. It is surrounded by lands of a good quality, and an extensive settlement, and is in latitude thirty-eight degrees five minutes north, eighty miles southeast of Vandalia. It is now in an improving condition, has four stores, a saw and flouring mill, and a neat brick court house, forty feet square, with a cupola, the whole painted and neatly finished. Carmi has many good framed houses, and about fifty families, 2 lawyers, and 3 physicians.
Carolus, a post office in Vermilion county, about twenty miles from Danville, west of south, and on the mail route from Vincennes to Chicago.
CARROLLTON, the seat of justice for Greene county, is a flourishing and pleasant village, situated on the borders of String prairie, nearly equidistant from Macoupin and Apple creeks, and on the dividing line of sections twenty-two and twenty-three, ten north, and twelve west. It has 17 stores, 6 groceries, 2 taverns, 7 lawyers, 6 physicians, 4 ministers of the gospel, 2 male and 2 female schools, 2 steam flouring mills, 2 steam saw mills, one tannery, and about 1000 inhabitants. The court house is neatly built of brick; forty-four by forty-six feet, two stories, with a handsome spire. Around Carrollton is a beautiful country, tolerably level, rich soil, suitably proportioned into timber and prairie, and densely populated with industrious and thriving farmers. Here are Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist and Reformer societies. Houses of worship for the Baptists, Reformers, and Methodists are erected, and the Presbyterians are preparing to build. Improved farms around Carrollton sell for ten, fifteen, and twenty dollars per acre. The houses mostly are framed, or of brick, built in a plain but convenient style.
Carter’s Settlement, near the south part of McDonough county, twelve miles from Macomb, on the road to Rushville. The land is gently undulatiug, soil rich, timber and prairie proportioned, and an extensive settlement. It is in the south part of four north, two west, between the heads of Sugar creek and Grindstone fork. This is the oldest settlement in the county.
CARTHAGE, the seat of justice for Hancock county, is situated in the prairie, one mile from timber between the head waters of Bear and Long creeks, and nine miles from the Mississippi, on the northwest quarter of section nineteen, township five north, in range six west. The town was laid off by commissioners in March, 1833, and about one hundred lots sold the following June; averaging about thirty dollars each. It now contains three stores, one grocery, three carpeuters, one blacksmith, two cabinet makers, one wheelwright, one tavern, one brick maker, one physician; but no lawyer. The adjoining prairie is dry, and beautifully undulating. The timber adjacent is excellent. Good water in all this region is obtained by digging wells from fifteen to twenty-five feet deep. Coal is near and in abundance. Since the sale of lots, property has risen in value about fifty per cent.
Cass Post Office is in Cook county, 22 miles from Chicago, on the road to Ottawa.
Casey’s Grove is fifteen miles northeast from Jacksonville, on the road to Beardstown. It is a small grove of from five to six hundred acres on Clay creek.
Casey’s Prairie, in Jefferson county, adjoining Mount Vernon, is five miles long and two miles broad; surface tolerably level, soil second rate, and the population consists of about 130 families.
Cash river, a stream in the southern part of the state, which is formed from several branches, and a series of ponds that exist in Union and Johnson counties. These unite in Alexander county, through which the main stream follows a devious course, at one time approaching within a mile and a half of the Mississippi, and again approaching near the Ohio, till it empties its waters into the latter river, at Trinity, six miles above its mouth. One of its principal branches rises in Union county, and forms the “Scatters of Cash,” which see. Another source of its waters is in Johnson county, in a series of ponds which are connected with the waters of Big Bay creek, in Pope county. The outlet of these ponds is known by the name of Pond Slough. The alluvions of Cash river, where not inundated, are wide, of a rich soil, and heavily timbered.
Cato, a post office on the west side of Clay county, and on the Vincennes and St. Louis stage roads.
Cat Tail Swamp, is in Whiteside county, and connects the waters of the Mississippi and Rock river. It is navigable for small craft at some seasons.
Cave-in-Rock. This natural curiosity, well known to all the navigators of the Ohio river, is situated on the bank of the Ohio, where the dividing line between Pope and Gallatin counties strikes the river. Such caves and piles of rock, as are described in the following sketch, are called by the Indians Mon-e-to – a name spelled Mani-teau, by the French, and sometimes Mon-it-to by other authors. It signifies “the residence of a spirit” either good or bad. There are several Mon-e-toes in Illinois, Missouri, and other western states. One is at the precipices of the Mississippi adjoining Lower Alton. Two more that give names to streams in Boone and Coles counties, Missouri. The Indians relate some wild and extravagant legends of the freaks of these imaginary beings at their “residences,” and they usually propitiate the favour of the Mon-e-to, by liberal offerings, and the firing of guns, as they pass his habitation.
The one at the head of this article, known to Americans by the name Cave-in-rock, was long the rendezvous of a class of beings, far more formidable and dangerous to the whites, than the Indian Mon-e-toes.
In 1797, it was the place of resort and security to Mason and his gang of robbers; who plundered and murdered the crews of boats, while descending the Ohio. It still answers as a temporary residence for those who need shelter while on the river. The rock is limestone abounding with shells.
The following description of this cave is given by Thaddeus M. Harris, an English tourist, made in the spring of 1803, a writer who has done justice to the West in his descriptions generally.
“For about three or four miles before you come to this place, you are presented with a scene truly romantic. On the Illinois side of the river, you see large ponderous rocks piled one upon another, of different colours, shapes and sizes. Some appear to have gone through the hands of the most skilful artist; some represent the ruins of ancient edifices; others thrown promiscuously in and out of the river, as if nature intended to show us with what ease she could handle those mountains of solid rock. In some places, you see purling streams winding their course down their rugged front; while in others, the rocks project so far, that they seem almost disposed to leave their doubtful situations. After a short relief from this scene, you come to a second, which is something similar to the first; and here, with strict scrutiny, you can discover the cave.” Before its mouth stands a delightful grove of cypress trees, arranged immediately on the bank of the river. They have a fine appearance, and add much to the cheerfulness of the place.
“The mouth of the cave is but a few feet above the ordinary level of the river, and is formed by a semicircular arch of about eighty feet at its base, and twenty-five feet in height, the top projecting considerably over, forming a regular concave. From the entrance to the extremity, which is about 180 feet, it has a regular and gradual ascent. On either side is a solid bench of rock; the arch coming to a point about the middle of the cave, where you discover an opening sufficiently large to receive the body of a man, through which comes a small stream of fine water, made use of by those who visit this place. From this hole, a second cave is discovered whose dimensions, form, etc., are not known. The rock is of limestone. The sides of the cave are covered with inscriptions, names of persons, dates, etc.” [Harris’s Tour, etc., Boston, 1805.]
The trees have been cut down and the entrance into the cave exposed to view.
Cedar Creek post office is in Warren county, section thirty-five, township twelve north, range three west, and about seven miles northwest from Monmouth.
Cedar Creeks in Adams county, which rises in one south, eight west, runs west, and enters Boston bay. A saw and grist mill has been erected on this stream and the land contiguous is good.
Cedar Creeks in Johnson county, rises in the northeastern part, runs south, and enters Big bay creek. It has large, abrupt bluffs, covered with cedar, and a settlement near it.
Cedar Creek, a branch of Big Muddy river in Jackson county, rises in Union county, and runs first north, and then a western course, and enters Muddy river twelve miles above its mouth. This creek has high bluffs towards its mouth, which abound with cedar. The country is broken, timbered, well watered with springs, and contains about one hundred families. The main settlement is six miles from Brownsville.
Cedar Fork, a branch of Crooked creek, in the northwest corner of Schuyler county, runs through a dry and rather hilly tract of country.
Cedar Fork of Henderson river rises in the great prairie between Henderson and Spoon rivers and taking a northwestern course, enters the main Henderson. The land along its borders is first rate, and begins to receive cultivation from an industrious settlement.
Centerville, called also “Virginia Centerville,” a settlemant at the intersection of the base line of the fourth principle meridian, with the boundary line betwixt Adams and Schuyler counties. Excellent prairie and timbered land, undulating, healthy, and watered by the head branches of McKee’s and crooked creeks. A post office is here called Daviston, within Schuyler county, twenty-five miles from Rushville.
Centerville, a post office in Wabash county, situated five miles northwest from Mount Carmel.
CHARLESTON, the seat of justice for Coles county, is situated on the border of the Grand prairie, two and a half miles from, and on the west side of, the Embarras river, on section eleven, township twelve north, nine east. The surface around is tolerably level, the soil fertile, and the settlements already considerable, will soon be extensive. It has three stores, three groceries, and about twenty-five families. It was laid out in 1831, and the first sale of lots took place in that year.
Charter’s Grove, a small tract of timber on the waters of Kishwaukee in Kane county.
Chatham, a post office in Sangamon county, north of Sangamon river, and on the road from Springfield to Havanna.
Cheyney’s Grove, a settlement near the head waters of the Sangamon, on the east of McLean county, twenty-three north, six east. This timber is an island in the great prairie, of three or four square miles, twenty-five miles east of Bloomington, and on the road to Danville. The population is 24 families.
Cherry Grove, a settlement in St. Clair county, eight miles northeasterly from Belleville, with a dense population of Germans.
Cherry Grove, a post office, in Jo Daviess county.
Chester, a town on the bank of the Mississippi river, in Randolph county, and about two miles below the mouth of the Kaskaskia river. It is situated on an elevated strip of bottom land at the foot of the bluffs and is a commercial depot for the country back. Exports by steamboats for 1836, $150,000; imports, 130,000. It has five stores, three groceries, one tavern, one physician, two ministers of the gospel, four warehouses, one steam saw and grist mill, one castor oil factory, and 280 inhabitants.
Source: Peck, J. M. A Gazetteer of Illinois; in Three Parts. Part Third. Containing a Particular Description of Each Town, Settlement, Stream, Prairie, Bottom, Bluff, &c. Alphabetically Arranged Philadelphia: 1837.