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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
(1880)

Chapter XI,   pp. 665-697 PDF (18.3 MB)


Page 696


HISTORY OF COLUMBIA COUNTY.
He inquired at the double log house, which was then occupied by a man named
Paddock,
and which is on the farm now occupied by Cyrus Montgomery, if he could find
accommodations
for the night. The lady of the rude mansion, which was kept as a sort of
hostelry, told him
that he could, if he would take care of his own horse. He "accordingly
mowed the animal some
feed from the luxuriant meadow of nature which grew close by the premises,
and stabled him in
the log barn, which was well built enough for those times, except that it
was roofless and without
doors. There was no intimation of supper that evening, but as Arnold had
eaten late in the
afternoon, he did not suffer in consequence of that omission. Stopping at
the house at that
time, was a bridal party which added to the interest of Arnold's first night
in this part of Wis-
consin. Mayor Fisk had recently been married to a daughter of Zenas Robbins,
and as the
course of true love was running very rough in his case, he had found it expedient
to put some
distance between him and his irretrievable father-in-law. He was a devotee
of the violin, and
he fiddled away the hours of his honeymoon there in the wilderness in careless
happiness, as if
he was the possessor of millions, instead of being penniless. Arnold at length
grew drowsy
under the influence of this indifferent execution of " Old Zip Coon,"
" The Arkansas Traveler,"
and other harmonies of that ilk, mixed with much billing and cooing, and
was shown to bed
without any light. During the night, Paddock returned home from Columbus
in a condition
the reverse of sober.  The second floor was thin and full of cracks, and
Arnold had the com-
plete benefit~of the rough eloquence with which Mrs. Paddock assailed her
lord for an hour or more
on the enormity of going to Columbus and getting drunk, with a stranger in
the house, the
cows not come up, and not a mouthful for anybody to eat. When Arnold awoke
the next
morning, the light was shining full in his face through the rents in the
roof, and a line of chickens
were roosting calmly on a pole stretching across the room at right angles
with his bed. The
breakfast of which Arnold and the happy bride and groom partook that morning
consisted of
tea without milk or sugar, dry bread and stewed tomatoes.
   Arnold came into Columbus that day, and purchased the lot opposite the
Fox House, 150
feet front, for $30 ; Bassett and Arnol'd built a store that fall, and went
into business, though
they did not remove all their goods from Janesville until the following spring.
Arnold con-
tinued a resident of Columbus until the fall of 1851, when, having been elected
Register of
Deeds, he removed to Portage, where in 1853 he and "Bony " Fargo
established themselves in
the hardware business in what was known as the old Verandah Block. Fargo
subsequently went
to California, and is now one of the leading wholesale liquor dealers in
San Francisco.
                                   TRAVEL NOW AND THEN.
                                        BY H. D. BAThT.
     One of our business men has pressing business in Milwaukee, and while
yet the nocturnal
darkness shadows his sleeping neighbors, he shakes himself from his slumbers
and reaches the
railroad depot. The quiet of that gloomy period that precedes daybreak by
a couple of hours
rests in all the surroundings, which look as if life or animation never fell
upon or entwined
them. It is the period when animal life is at its lowest ebb; when the powers
of darkness and
of radiance are beginning a combat, the result of which will be a new day.
He feels the
depressing influence of the time, and half regrets' the precipitancy that
led to his taking an
early train. But he waits drowsily for the coming conveyance, and perhaps,
in the mean ,time
draws a practical comparison as to the yielding of slumber between the hard
benches of the wait-
ing room and his own comfortable bed. There is a languor upon him that speaks
of nature
violated and the diminution of her sweet restorer, and he falls into a troubled
nap. Amid the
dreams that flit across it, the carpet bag under his head seems gradually
to assume Alpine alti-
tude and ruggedness, and to produce a proportionate strain on the back of
the neck. Presently,
he catches an approaching rumble which suggests to his bewildered faculties
the opening of an
overture.  Only half awakene'd, he reaches the platform and is in the midst
of the glare of the
great fiery eye of the advancing lo',omotive. Though expecting it, he cannot
repress the momentary
696


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