REV. JOHN WALLACE, Soldier of the Revolution, Pioneer and "Circuit Rider"

Paper read by Josephine Chapman, D.A.R. Cor. Sec. 1906-7. A Charter member of White River Chapter D.A.R., Washington, Ind. The message borne across the ocean by John Wesley and George Whitfield can never be measured in its influence for good. Whitfield, the orator, carried the glad tidings to the other colonies during subsequent visits, until he died, 1770, at Newburyport, Mass. Thus was the faith of an already religious people deepened. One man whose life was influenced in this was John Wallace, who served in the Revolutionary war, as a private in General John Gibson's detachment, Western Division. At the beginning of the last century he brought a large company of relatives from Salisbury, N. Carolina, and from Spartansburg and Union, S. Carolina to people in the "Far West," as Indiana Territory was then esignated. They traveled in wagons (called Prairie Schooners) over mountain and plain, through forests and streams, camping at night for rest and sleep. To guard against attach from Indians and wild animals some would watch while others slept. On and on they went, finally reaching the settlement at Vincennes but later decided to remove to the banks of White river, where they founded Maysville 1808.

One of the sons of Rev. John Wallace, William, with his young and beautiful bride (Sarah Horrall, daughter of William and Priscilla Houghton Horrall) Whom he had brought with him from the east, soon left the roof-tree, recrossed White river and settled near Vincennes. Several months passed when one day quite a number of men from the neighborhood for miles around were gathered at his home to arrange for scouring the surrounding country in search of a saddle which had been lost or stolen. A saddle in those days was very highly valued and none could afford to lose. During the forming of their plans they were surprised at the appearance of a great, fierce-looking Indian, heavily armed, who asked the object of their meeting, on being told seemed anxious to join in the search. Instructions were given him and soon all departed in various directions. Mrs. Wallace had engaged the company of one of the neighbor friends during the absence of her husband but before the friend arrived and indeed only a short time after the departure of the men, who should darken her door-way but the fierce-looking Indian. Poor Mrs. Wallace! Her heart sank within her but she must not let the Indian know that she felt alarmed so she prepared him some food, consuming as much time as possible in its preparation, earnestly hoping that her expected friend would soon arrive but the time passed slowly. When she saw that he had about finished his meal, the thought seized her to take the horse to water, and reaching for the bridle, which hung on the gun rack near her, imagine her horror on being intercepted by the Indian who came up behind her and began to jabber something about making her his "Squaw." She quickly unclasped and threw off his hands, faced about, seized an ax and bravely told him not to touch her again or she would kill him and said "William had better not find you here." The Indian began flourishing his bowie knife, a horrible looking weapon, while at his belt glistened his tomahawk and near him was his gun. Pointing to the sun, high in the heavens, then low to the west meant that William would not return until sundown. Mrs. Wallace felt that he surely would kill her unless she could calmly outwit him in some way and that very quickly. She immediately left the room and shut the door. Then she thought, he can shoot, so she opened the door. When he came out she went in and secured the bridle and the ax, telling him not to touch her and that "If William finds you here he'll shoot." She went to the stable nearby and, strange to say, met with no opposition in bridling the horse, which was unusually stubborn, spirited, fractious and always hard to bridle. She led him out to the fence, the Indian following and jabbering all the time. She had placed herself on the horse and was ready to start when he seized the bridle. She told him to let go or she would - he then drew his bowie knife and muttered something, but just then a noise was heard in the underbrush nearby (probably the noise was made by the falling of a nut) "There! Now!" she said. He dropped the bridle and ran. She turned and fled in the opposite direction as fast as her fleet horse could carry her to the home of her neighbor, Mrs. Hogue. The Indian was seen afterward near the place when Mr. Wallace called to some one to bring him the gun, saying, "There's the Indian who tried to take my Squaw." The Red Man ran like and Indian indeed.

The first fort in Daviess county was built at Maysville by John Wallace and his relatives and friends. After spending the winter of 1808 in the fort on Apr. 28, 1809, John Wallace bought N. E. quarter section 9, Township 2, Range 7. The Ballous and Hawkins brought some of their liberated slaves still live in Daviess county. Oct. 10, 1809. Wm. Horrall brought S. W. quar. Sec 9, Township 2, Range 7. Oct. 13, 1809, Thomas Horrall, Sr., (brother of Wm., Sr.) bought S. E. quarter Section 9, Range 7 Township 2. At the conference at Vincennes, between Tecumseh and Wm. Harrison, then Governor of Indiana Territory, Rev. John Wallace, William Wallace and Wm. Horrall, Sr., were present.  During their stay in the fort Rev. John Wallace preached to his kinsmen and did missionary work among the Indians by whom he was almost worshipped. In 1813 in the Indian uprising, in the five forts of the county the names of his relatives almost make a complete census of the inhabitants. The Indians threatened from without, the Malaria from within, so they moved from the river, built a church on the Wallace land, two miles from the present town of Washington, which church was called Bethel. It was heated by a charcoal brazier, and builded with a large balcony, seating many people. It was the first church in the county. Rev. John Wallace was its pastor, and here the Missouri Conference, which as bounded on the east by a line running north from Madison, was held in 1818, Bishop McKendre presiding. This conference embraced Indiana, Illinois and Missouri.

In 1815 Washington, then called Liverpool, was founded by John Wallace and his relatives and friends.  The deed was witnessed by Emanuel VanTress, William Wallace and John Wallace, as Mr. David Flora, the owner could not sign his name. The town site was purchased Oct. 16 1815 and June 9 and 10, 1817 the Liverpool lots were sold to Josiah Wallace lot 11 @ $47.00; Solomon Wallace lot 24 @ $68.00; John Wallace, Jr., lot 26 @ $64.00; William Ballou lot 81 @ $130; Wesley Wallace lot 91 @ $35.25; Josiah Wallace lot 101 @ $75.50; William Ballou lot 59 @ $80.00; William Hawkins lot 67 @ $91.00; Benjamin Hawkins lot 74 @ $65.00, all were relatives by blood or marriage.

In 1835 the townships of Daviess county were Washington, Veale, Reeve, Barr, Bogard, Elmore and Wallace. The first children born in the county were Priscilla Houghton Wallace, born Dec. 9, 1809 and Eleanor Morgan Wallace, born Feb. 23, 1811, daughters of William and Sarah Horrall Wallace. William was the son of Rev. John Wallace and Eleanor Morgan Wallace. The Aikmans claim the first child was John Aikman. He was the first boy born but was born later, about 1811, I think. These families were all in Comer's fort during the war of 1812-1814, in which William Wallace was a soldier in engagement at Ft. Harrison. The first son of William and Sarah Horrall Wallace was born in the fort January 9, 1813, while his father was fighting Tecumseh. The son was named Harrison. William Wallace belonged to "The Rangers" and had charge of the military protection of the five forts in Daviess county. In 1816 Rev. John Schrader and Rev. John Wallace organized the first Methodist church in Liverpool, now Washington. The meetings were held in the homes of Samuel Miller and Thomas Meredith. When the new church was dedicated in 1837, Rev. Aaron Wood was pastor. He was licensed to preach by Rev. John Wallace, as was also Rev. John Miller afterward of Madison. In Sept. 1828 the finances of the county since 1817 were investigated by special committee appointed by the board. John VanTrees and George A Wallace were the investigating committee. This same cousin, Geo. A. Wallace, served as one of the first board of Vincennes University.

In the war of the Rebellion, Veale township, Daviess county, never had a draft and there were twelve Wallaces who served: Nicholas Farmer Wallace, Darius C. Wallace, Justus A. Wallace, James Polk Wallace, sons of Coleman Carlisle Wallace and Sarah Chapman, his wife; Willis Elijah Wallace and John G. Wallace, grandsons of Coleman Carlisle and Sarah (Chapman) Wallace; Willis Enoch Wallace, William Long Wallace, Willard Henry Wallace, Chauncey Enoch Wallace, sons of William Thomas Wallace, grandsons of Coleman Carlisle Wallace, who was a son of Rev. John Wallace; Enoch Wallace, son of Coleman Carlisle and Sarah (Chapman) Wallace, and Nicholas Wallace, also served in the Mexican War. Mr. John G. Wallace says, My grandfather, Coleman Carlisle Wallace, had five sons, seven grandsons, tow sons-in-law and one grand son-in-law in the war of Rebellion and I am the only one that got through from first to last. I was sun struck at Cedar Mountain, Virginia, wounded at Gettysburg, Pa., and Resaca, Ga., and thank God, I still live. I with Wm. A. Wallace, Joseph L., Clarence B., and Elmer Wallace are the only great grandsons of Rev. John Wallace living in Washington bearing the name of Wallace. To these may be added Leroy and Baker Wallace. Besides the twelve Wallaces there were many others of Rev. John Wallace's descendants bearing other names who answered their country's call. Among them were my three brothers, John, William and Albert Chapman. Albert, a drummer boy, in the 145 Ind. Vols., served one year. William, a cavalryman of 13th Ind. Vols, for the greater part of three years was in the South with Hood and Sherman opening the way "from Atlanta to the Sea." John a private in 18th Ind. Vols for four long years answered th bugle call marching with heavy equipment through heat and cold, sunshine and rain, dust and mud, up hill and down, across streams and valleys for days and nights to endure the seige of Vicksburg, and with Sheridan in the Shenandoah, where he was captured by the enemy and endured the horrors of a Valley Forge or Libby, during prison life at Salisbury, North Carolina. Strange coincidence, that the great grandson after almost a century had elapsed, should become a prisoner of war at the very threshold of the ancestral home near Salisbury where the grandfather, Rev. John Wallace, enlisted in the Revolutionary war.

In each generation a minister has been ordained yet not of the Wallace name. Cousin Perry Wallace being the last of the name Wallace to preach. He died while a student at Asbury college (now DePauw). Many of the descendants of Rev. John Wallace, the Revolutionary soldier, have been soldiers, valiant and true, during the Indian wars, the Mexican war and the war of the Rebellion. As well as soldiers the Wallaces have served as ministers in preaching the Gospel to the multitudes and as a member of the Legislature and Congress in making laws for the people. "To a Wallace belongs much of the credit of Prof. Morse's invention. When the matter was up for consideration in Congress, David Wallace was a member of Congress from the Indianapolis district. When it came before the committee for a cote, the committee tied up to the last one on the roll, which was Mr. Wallace.  He had to decide the question, and he decided in favor of the appropriation for Mr. Morse. It cost Mr. Wallace his seat in Congress, as the people looked upon the appropriation as squandering the people's money in a visionary scheme, yet Mr. Wallace looked upon his vote as the proudest thing in his congressional career.

In 1819 Rev. John Wallace preached on the Patoka Circuit, Illinois district, Missouri conference, one circuit being four hundred miles including Patoka, Vincennes, Terre Haute, Sullivan near Bedford, Hindostan and Washington. In "Footprints of an Itinerant" a book published in the early 60's, the author stated that Rev. John Wallace was the first "Circuit Rider" in Southern Indiana, one of the pioneer leaders of men to give the call to all that wanted to stand for the right, whom Dr. Edward Eggleston, of Vevay and Madison, immortalized. Posterity's debt to the "Circuit Rider" cannot be valued too highly, as they not only had charge of the spiritual but the temporal welfare of their parishioners, as it was before the newspapers, telegraph, telephone and railroads had come to unite the four corners of the globe.

In 1820 Rev. John Wallace preached on the Ohio Circuit, Indiana district, Missouri Conference. The next year, 1821, he was on the Blue river circuit which lies between New Albany and Madison. On account of his advanced age he was assisted by Rev. Joseph Kincaid. On one of his journeys he became very ill and could not proceed to his next meeting place. He Dismounted, pillowed his head on the saddle and spent the night in storm in the forest. He turned his horse loose thinking it might bring him assistance but it lingered near its master. When feeling better, he re-mounted, rode to the nearest home where he received a hearty welcome and aid in returning home. This exposure began an illness which caused his death one year later, 1822. He rests near the site of the church which he helped to build, now it is gone and the New Bethel which is called Old Bethel is almost a mile away, three miles south of Washington.

His wife was Eleanor Morgan and their son, William, married Sarah Horrall. Her parents were William Horrall and Priscilla Houghton whose father was in the battle of Bennington, Vermont. In 1824-1835 during the terms of Gov. Hendricks and Gov. Noble, William Wallace was representative and State Senator from Martin and Daviess counties and was a warm friend of Gen. William Henry Harrison, who resided at Vincennes during the Indian troubles and later in a printed address to the voters of the district in 1824, William Wallace says: Fellow citizens, my father, John Wallace, was a Republican and he took up arms in the old Revolutionary war and defended his country, though he has now returned to his mother dust and I, fellow citizens, am a true Republican. I have always been adverse to any other principles. In the late war we were surrounded by the savages on our frontier and while others were flying for refuge to other countries, I stood my ground and maintained my rights and I was always ready and willing, if called upon to go. I was always ready to obey superiors. Witness the seige of Fort Harrison."

William Wallace was born Feb. 22, 1786, coming to Indiana on his wedding journey in 1808.  While crossing the Alleghany mountains in their emigrant wagons in ascending a steep and dangerous grade one of the horses balked. Young William Wallace believing the remedy for balkiness to be a whipping applied the treatment vigorously. His father, Rev. John Wallace, by way of reproof, told him that he ought to be hitched to the wagon for a while instead of the horse. During the severe winter of 1835 as State Senator, William Wallace made the trip to Indianapolis on horse, and during the session he made a speedy journey home to purchase a great tract of land offered for sale, then returned. From exposure during the trips to and from Indianapolis he contracted a deep cold which resulted in fever terminating in hemorrhage of the lungs causing his death Feb 1st, 1835. As this was before the time of railroads and telegraph it was one week before his widow learned of his passing, as there was a state funeral in the old State House, Indianapolis first, and the courier sent to tell his wife of his death lost the way, and was met at Bloomington by the son, Harrison, they arrived less than an hour in advacce of the cortege accompanied by fellow statesmen. The weather was intensely cold and to convey the remains from Indianapolis to his home was a difficult and sad undertaking, requiring four days and nights to make the journey. The squeaking, grinding noise made by the passing of wagon wheels on the cold, frozen snowy roads will always remind the writer of the long funeral train and the mournful days following the sad burial of Hon. William Wallace. The widow said, "if ever a woman met her true mate I met mine in William Wallace."

His father, Rev. John Wallace, died while in the service of The Great Master as bravely as he had fought to fee his country from British oppression.  He had founded a new home and community in this western wilderness, where his son, William, helped to protect the homes and forts of Daviess and Knox counties and when trying to help the new state make laws to protect and maintain the rights of its inhabitants so dearly bought, he, like his father, received the summons while at his post of duty. He had kept the spirit o his promise given eleven years before when he was a candidate for representative in 1824. "My motives will be pure and my talents shall be devoted to your service."

The Wallaces came from Paisley, Scotland, "Ellerslie" or Elderslie, being the name of the ancestral home which descended from Sir Malcome
Wallace to his son, Sir William whose heiress, Lady Alice, married Lord Baillie, whose daughter married Sir John Wallace, her cousin. Their son, William, had a son, Michael, who settled in King George's county, Virginia, and called his estate "Ellerslie." Thus was the American line established to the southern branch of which, Rev. John Wallace, the subject of this sketch belonged. The John Wallace Chapter, D.A.R., of Bedford, Ind., was named in honor of the subject, Rev. John Wallace. The chapter was organized by the great granddaughter, Mrs. Belle Wallace Brooks, of Bedford.

Submitted by: Joe Wallace
Typed by: Lauren McNiece

John C. Hunter, of Washington, Daviess County, Ind., is a native of this county and was born in Barr township July 29, 1863, a son of William and Lucinda Hunter. He was educated in the common schools, and at twenty-one years of age began farming on his own account, on a tract of 120 acres of good farm land given him by his father. This excellent farm he cultivated until 1895, in August of which year he located in Washington and embarked in the livery business, which he successfully prosecuted about two years. He was accommodating and square and just in all his dealings, and necessarily became a favorite with the public. He still owns and operates his farm, but has retired from the livery business.

Mr. Hunter was united in marriage October 21, 1891, with Miss Maggie O'Keefe, a native of Daviess County and a daughter of Morris and Mary O'Keefe, and this marriage has been blessed by the birth of one child - Helen. Mr. and Mrs. Hunter are consistent members of St. Simon's Catholic congregation, and in his politics Mr. Hunter is a democrat.

Submitted by: John D. McMullen
History of the Catholic Church in Indiana. (Logansport, Ind.: Bowen, 1898.)
Vol. 2, p76


Michael Matthews and Ellen Owen, parents of Joseph P., Owen, James, Margaret, Mary Ellen, Edward, Ann, John, Michael, Jr., and three infants who died. They settled in St. Mary's, Barr Twp in 1838, traveling by covered wagon from Baltimore, Maryland. Michael was born in County Langford, Ireland in 1802. Ellen, his wife, was born in Virginia in 1814. Enroute to St. Mary's, they stopped in Jefferson Co., Indiana (Madison?) where their first child, Owen, was born on 17 January 1838. They came to Vincennes and purchased 80 acres of US government land for $2.00 per acre on August 1, 1839, in section 9, near St. Mary's. Their son, Joseph became the first student for the priesthood from St. Mary's parish.

Submitted by: Shirley Platt

The KIDWELL Family

Hezekiah and Susanna Kidwell did not live long enough to come to Indiana, however, many of their children came. During the Revolutionary War, they lived in Prince George's County, Maryland, where they were married, and where he signed the Oath of Fidelity and Support for our new country. Hezekiah and Susanna died in Washington County, KY. His children who came to Indiana and were attached to the congregation of St. Mary's were Juliet, who married Henry Mattingly; John H. who married Henrietta Queen; Lucy, who married Daniel McAtee; Treacy who first married Joseph Knott and then Christopher Hagan; Sylvester who married Nancy Fields; Rose Ann who married James Jones; and Thomas who married Theresa Arvin. His sons, Nicholas and James were members of St. Peter's Church. He also had a son, Felix, and a daughter Elizabeth Roby, who were not members of St. Mary's. There are many descendants still living in the area, and the name of Kidwell is represented in St. Mary's Church today.

Submitted by: Shirley Platt

LENTS, Jacob

Jacob Lents was born in Kentucky, November 7, 1788, a son of Nicholas Lents. He came to Indiana when the area was still a wilderness. He married Elizabeth {Betsy} Seal, and to this union were born John Jacob who married Christina Spalding, a daughter of {James} Ignatius and Julia Ann (Montgomery) Spalding; Nicholas who married Maria Compton; William who married Matilda Edwards; James N. who married Permelia King; Bernard who married Catherine Spalding Gootee, also a daughter of Ignatius Spalding; Vincent who married Margaret Jackson; Raymond J. who married America Jackson; Elizabeth who married Thomas J. Spalding; Jonathan who first married Susan Brewer, and then Melissa Lents; Mary who married Henry Gootee; and a last daughter, Sallie. Jacob and Elizabeth lived to see many descendants attend St. Mary's Church. Elizabeth died on March 1, 1848, and Jacob a week later on March 7, 1848. Both have stones in the cemetery.

Submitted by: Shirley Platt

GOOTEE, Joseph Whelan

The name of Gootee can be found in Dorchester County, on the eastern shore of Maryland, as early as 1662. Joseph Whelan Gootee married Sarah Bramble in Maryland and came to Washington County, KY bringing with them her brother Eleven Bramble, who founded Bramble, Indiana. Joseph Gootee died in Washington County in 1810, and his widow, Sarah, came to Daviess County, along with several children. Here she remarried in 1820 to Joshua Horner. The children who came with her to Indiana were Thomas Nesbe, who first married Nancy Silvers and after her death, Lucinda Carrico Bertrand. He was the founder of Loogootee, Indiana. Mary died at age 16, Silas married Barbara Walker, Sarah J. married Charles A. Norris, Elizabeth married John Dennis Norris, and Charles married Catherine Spalding. Some by the name of Gootee, in the area, descend from George Gootee, a brother of Joseph, who married Mary Burns. Shortly after the death of Mr. Horner, a paper in his estate carried the note that his widow, Mrs. Horner, "lives with one of the Mr. Gootees near McAtee's mill." In a family history, Catherine Spalding Gootee stated "my grandmother said that when they came to Indiana there was no place to go on Sunday. The nearest neighbor was three miles away. On Sundays they would say their prayers, the beads and the litany. Then they would go into the woods, sit on a log, and listen to birds singing. Here too lived St. Palais. For five years Mass was said in the Spalding home; then, for two years in the log church. Bishop Brute blessed the church November 25, 1834. Finding the log church too small, he built the new church in 1836-37. My father at five or six years old ground out the church. They had sort of a mill with a horse to go round and round like a cane mill. The bishop came to my grandmother's house to ask if the boy could go over to ride the horse. My grandmother said 'yes, anything you wish him for.' The bishop followed him a few rounds to see that he would not fall off. His feet stuck out like pegs on the broad back of the horse. He received 25 cents a week -- 50 cents for two weeks of riding."

Submitted by: Shirley Platt

GEORGE D. ABRAHAM, harness and hardware merchant at Odon, Ind., was born October 16, 1844, in Columbiana County, Ohio, and is a son of Daniel and Eliza (RANSOM) Abraham. The father was of Scotch-Irish descent, and was born June 6, 1814, in Steubenville, Ohio. He was a farmer; married in 1842, and in 1855 came to Indiana, and in 1870 moved to Kansas, where he died in June, 1876. The mother was a native of the "Buckeye State," born December 3,1816. She died December 15, 1878.

Subject attended the district schools, and at the age of seventeen became one of the "boys in blue," enlisting in August, 1862, in Company I, Sixty-fifth Indiana Volunteer Infantry, for three years or during the war. He took an active part in the battles of Resaca, Nashville, Franklin, Kenesaw Mountain, siege of Knoxville, the Atlanta campaign, and numerous minor engagements. He was among the fortuante ones, not receiveing a wound or being sick while in the service, but was always ready for active duty. He remained in the field until hostilities ceased, when he received his discharge, July 5, 1865, at Indianapolis, Ind. After returning from the war he manufactured wagons at Odon for ten yeras, meeting with good success.

December 23, 1869, he married Emma SMITH, born April 11, 1852, a daughter of John V. and Susan Smith. His wife died April 23, 1874, after having borne her husband two children, one now living, Cora E. July 5, 1875, he married Adaline BLOUGH, daughter of Joseph and Mary E. Blough. Mrs. Abraham was born August 6, 1852, in Stark County, Ohio. To them were born six children, four of whom are living: Nora E., Daniel J., Clarence W. and Mabel J.

In 1874 Mr. Abraham began selling agricultural implements, and in 1881 he and Howard COOKE became partners in a general hardware and harness store in Odon. The following year Mr. Cooke sold his interest, and since that time Mr. Abraham has been sole proprietor of a fine stock of goods. He is one of the solid business men of the township, and has the reputation of being honest and enterprising. He owns seventy acres of land, and good business and dwelling house; also property in Elnora.

He is a Republican in politics, and was constable of Madison Township for four years, and deputy sheriff for two years. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity.

Data Entry Volunteer: Diana Flynn

JOSEPH WILSON, an old pioneer preacher of southern Indiana, is a son of Jesse and Winnie (HUMPHREY) Wilson, both natives of North Carolina. They came to Indiana in 1821, and located in Greene County. The father was educated for the Presbyterian ministry, but before his death he united with the Christian Church, and became a minister of that denomination.

Subject was born in North Carolina in 1796. He received but little education, barely learning to read and write. At the age of twenty-four years he united with the Christian Church. For about sixty-three years he has proclaimed the Gospel in southern Indiana and adjoining counties of Illinois. He is the oldest minister of his denomination in the State, and has been the means of converting about 4,000 persons to Christianity. For the first thirty years of his labor he received not a cent in payment.

In 1820 he married Anna GOAD, born in Tennessee in 1804. She was a daughter of Stephen and Rachael Goad. To Mr. and Mrs. Wilson these children were born: John, Matilda, William, David, James, Mary, Malinda, Lucinda, Martha, Joseph and Sarah. Mr. Wilson owns eighty acres of land, and, though not rich in worldly goods, he is rich in noble deeds, and the love, respect, and universal confidence of all who know him.

Data Entry Volunteer: Diana Flynn