<< Previous - Next >>

ELDRIDGE: Duncan CAMPBELL, wife Rebecca LIPPINCOTT and 5-yr-old son Charles Henry raft from Cincinnati to Iowa

Article by Bawden4

Duncan ELDRIDGE and Rachel BROWN were married 8 January 1823 in Haddonfield, New Jersey. They moved to Rochester, New York, where 2 more children were born, both dying in infancy. Jacob was 3 years old when Rachel died in 1827. After Rachel's death, Duncan returned to Haddonfield where he left 4-year-old Jacob in the care of Duncan's mother, a widow, and moved to Cincinnati to work at his bricklaying, plastering, and cooper (barrel maker) trade.

Rachel was illiterate. I don't have any history on her family.

In 1828, President John QUINCY ADAMS formally declared that all lands east of the Mississippi were to be sold to settlers gradually moving their way westward. Native American tribes were forced westward. Black Hawk and 2,000 of his followers refused to move and the "Black Hawk War" resulted. (Source: State of Iowa)

In November 1829 in Cincinnati, Duncan married his childhood friend from Haddonfield, Rebecca Lippincott, who was born in 1807.

On September 21, 1832, the Blackhawk War ended after 15 weeks in the Battle of Bad Axe, Wisconsin.

The Blackhawk War Treaty of 1836 gave title to 6 million acres of Native American land - not just Sac and Fox - to the US Government that lay west of the Mississippi River. Davenport was included in this land and was still called the Michigan Territory. Present at the signing, KEOKUK who was chief of the Sac Indians, English immigrant Colonel George DAVENPORT, Pottowattomie-blooded Antoine LeCLAIRE, who was also a French-Canadian fur trader working for the Hudson Bay Co. who was the interpreter for the US Government.

The treaty was signed near what is now College Avenue (Stubb's Eddy] in East Davenport. The treaty stated Native Americans relinquish a large part of what is now Iowa. Black Hawk, who no longer had power after his capture, camped with his remaining warriors at the top of present-day Lindsay Park. During the gathering for the treaty signing, famed Western artist, George CATLIN not only painted and sketched the Indiansincluding Black Hawkbefore they left their native lands, but also signed his name as a witness to the treaty

KEOKUK donated to Marguerite LeCLAIRE, Antoine's wife, a section of land where the treaty was actually signed in what is now the Village of East Davenport. Marguerite was the granddaughter of a Sac Chief and this gift was made with the understanding that the LeClaires would build their home on this site. Black Hawk was not present at the signing for his capture and imprisonment with 1000 of his followers for not allowing settlement west of the Mississippi.

In 1835, LeCLAIRE, DAVENPORT and 6 other men surveyed and laid out the town of Davenport on this land.

Duncan met LeCLAIRE and DAVENPORT in Cincinnati and heard them describe the town and it's beautiful land. He was persuaded to move to what was then called the Michigan Territory. Btw, Colonel" was an honorary title.

If you read the uninteresting book account, these page 19 paragraphs should be doused with White-Out.

Duncan built a substantial log raft with a shanty large enough to hold a 4-poster bed, dresser, chair, mirror, clothes, food and a stove.

The ELDRIDGEs (wife Rebecca, and 5-year-old son Charles) packed their belongings and drifted down the Cincinnati River. He thought land travel would be too slow and dangerous, mostly for the Native Americans. After negotiating the Ohio/Mississippi River route, Duncan encountered the captain of a steamship, possibly the Dubuque (book), and asked if he could tie the raft to the back of the boat. This arrangement worked for some distance until it started to get cold and the current slowed. The captain decided the ELDRIDGE raft was slowing him down, so he cut the ropes between the 2 boats and left the ELDRIDGEs to their own.

The Mississippi before the lock and dam system was very shallow, rocky and. therefore, lots of rapids. It could be crossed on foot or horse and buggy in many areas.

They came into the area in October, 1835. The river had frozen over and the ELDRIDGEs became iced-in. They tried calling for help. It was a period of a day or so before anyone heard them. At this point, they were closer to the Stephenson (Rock Island) side. Rescue efforts were hampered because of the ice and the size of the raft. Eventually, several people were able to pull the raft to the Illinois side. Duncan and Rebecca came over to Davenport in early snowy 1836. At the foot of Brady Street near the only other existing house owned by LeClaire, they erected a shanty from the raft logs.

The winds were pretty hefty and the snow had come early. The log cabin was packed with mud between the logs. As an insulator, they glued or shellacked pages of Cincinnati newspaper on the walls to keep the wind out. When the locals found out, they started to come by to read the news. Several people at a time would be standing at the walls, some even on footstools.

Duncan and Rebecca's first child here, Sarah, born May 3, 1837, was the first white girl born in Davenport May 3, 1837. Sons Lewis and Micajah followed.

Viewed: 566 times
by Bawden4 Profile | Research | Contact | Subscribe | Block this user
on 2011-12-13 16:19:07

Bawden4 , from Iowa, USA, has been a Family Tree Circles member since Apr 2011. is researching the following names: BAWDEN, BEECHER, LIPPINCOTT and 8 other(s).

Do you know someone who can help? Share this:

Comments

by Bawden4 on 2011-12-13 22:32:54

The Eldridge-Bawden Families: The Ancestry and Descendants of Duncan Campbell Eldridge and Stephen Bawden, Scott County, Iowa; author-compiler Alice Richardson Sloane, C.G. (dec 2011), commissioned by John Duvall Bawden (dec 1992), Bettendorf, Iowa; Anundsen Pub Co., Decorah, Iowa , 1986, 290 pps, no copyright, no ISBN, in the personal library of this writer.

References for pps.17-21 from this issue. The story recounted was from a fellow genealogist who says this was a reputable account from Duncan and Rachel's son, Jacob. She has a copy. The story in the above reference on page 19 was taken with liberties by author-compiler Alice Richardson Sloan, C.G.

History of Scott County, Iowa by H. E. Downer, 1910
Davenport Past and Present 1858, Franc B. Wilkie
History of Scott County, Iowa 1882
New Jersey State Papers, First Series vol XLII p 140
Davenport, Iowa City Directories
The Daily Davenport Democrat Newspaper 27 Aug 1867 no page
The Davenport Democrat Newspaper 3 Oct 1882, front page
Democrat Gazette newspaper 6 Oct 1889, front page
Davenport Daily Times: 12 Nov 1889 p. 3
Oakdale Memorial Gardens, 2501 Eastern Ave. Davenport, Iowa 52803
Scott County, Iowa vital records: marriage
1850 Iowa Federal Census, Scott County,Iowa,Davenport Township, p 45,37-45,p. 128, 169-184
1860 Iowa Federal Census, Scott County, Iowa Davenport Township, p. 297, #2589-2506
Scott County, Iowa probate: will of D.C. Eldridge #2030
Gloucester County, New Jersey Historical Society Bulletin - Sept 1965, p. 12

Davenpo

Register or Sign in to comment on this journal.