The history of Columbia County, Wisconsin, containing an account of its settlement, growth, development and resources; an extensive and minute sketch of its cities, towns and villages--their improvements, industries, manufactories, churches, schools and societies; its war record, biographical sketches, portraits of prominent men and early settlers; the whole preceded by a history of Wisconsin, statistics of the state, and an abstract of its laws and constitution and of the constitution of the United States
Butterfield, C. W.
IV.--Wisconsin territory, pp. 41-52 PDF (6.0 MB)
HISTORY OF WISCONSIN. Territory. Now, as Madison was a point answering such requirements she triumphed over all competitors; and the latter numbered a dozen or more-including, among others, Fond du Lac, Milwaukee, Racine, Belmont, Mineral Point, Green Bay, and Cassville. The struggle over this question was one 'of the most exciting ever witnessed in the Territorial legislature. Madison was fixed upon as the seat of government, but it was provided that sessions of the legislature should be held at Burlington, in Des Moines county, until the fourth of March, 1839, unless the public buildings in the new capital should be sooner completed. After an enactment that the legislature should thereafter meet on the first Monday of November of each year, both houses, on the ninth day of December, 1836, adjourned sine die. In the act of congress establishing the Territory of Wisconsin it was provided that a delegate to the house of representatives of the United States, to serve for the term of two years, should be elected by the voters qualified to elect members of the legislative assembly; and that the first election should be held at such time and place or places, and be conducted in such manner as the governor of the Territory should appoint and direct. In pursuance of this enactment, Governor Dodge directed that the election for delegate should be at the time and places appointed for the election of members of the legislative assembly - the ioth of October, 1836. The successful candidate for that office was George W. Jones, of Sinsinawa Mound, Iowa county- in that portion which was afterward "set off" as Grant county. Jones, under the act of 1819, had been elected a delegate for Michigan Territory, in October, 1835, and took his seat at the ensuing session, in December of that year. By the act of June 15, 1836, the consti- tution and State government which the people of Michigan had formed for themselves was accepted, ratified and confirmed, and she was declared to be one of the United States of America, so that the term of two years for which Jones had been elected was cut short, as, in the nature of the case, his term could not survive the existence of the Territory he represented. But, as he was a candidate for election to represent the new Territory of Wisconsin in congress as a delegate, and was successful, he took his seat at the commencement of the second session of the twenty-fourth congress-December 12, 1836, notwithstanding he had been elected only a little over two months. The first term of the supreme court of the Territory was held at Belmont on the 8th day of December. There were present, Charles Dunn, chief justice, and David Irvin, associate judge. John Catlin was appointed clerk, and Henry S. Baird having. previously been commissioned attorney general for the Territory by Governor Dodge, appeared before the court and took the oath of office. Causes in which the United States was party or interested were looked after by the United States attorney, who received his appointment from the president; while all cases in which the Territory was interested was attended to by the attorney general, whose commission was signed by the governor. The appointing of a crier and reporter and the admission of several attorneys to practice, completed the business for the term. The annual term appointed for the third Monday of July of the following year, at Madison, was not held; as no business for the action of the court had matured. At the time of the complete organization of the Territory of Wisconsin, when the whole machinery had been put fairly in motion; when its first legislature at its first session had, after passing forty-two laws and three joint resolutions, in forty-six days, adjourned; -at this time, the entire portion west of the Mississippi had, in round numbers, a population of only eleven thousand; while the sparsely settled mineral region, the military establishments - Fort Craw- ford, Fort Winnebago, and Fort Howard -and the settlements at or near them, with the village of Milwaukee, constituted about all there was of the Territory east of that river, aggregating about twelve thousand inhabitants. There was no land in market, .except a narrow strip along 44
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