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Otsego Herald

July 15, 2010

Otsego Herald: Celebrating the 4th

—   From the Otsego Herald for Saturday, July 14, 1810 Compiled, with comments by HUGH C. MacDOUGALL

BROAD-WHEELED WAGONS The directors of the first company of the Great Western Turnpike Road, desirous to encourage and patronize the introduction and use of broad wheeled waggons, have passed a resolution that ``all waggons passing on their road, the felloes or tire of the wheels of which are six inches broad or upwards, shall be exempted from paying toll at any of the gates of the said company, for the term of two years from the date of the said resolution; and that all the waggons the tire of which shall not be less tolls, for the said term of two years.’’

As this information must be important to the western traders, and persons concerned in the transportation of goods or produce, printers of newspapers, by publishing the same, will no doubt confer on many of their readers a particular favor.

COMMENT: The ``first company’’ of the Great Western Turnpike operated the toll road between Albany and Cherry Valley. The purpose of this enticement to wide rimmed wagon wheels was obviously to reduce the damage from ruts caused by ordinary wagons with narrow wheels. It probably had little effect; the turnpikes rarely made money, and were soon to be replaced by the Erie Canal and then by railroads.


A large concourse of the inhabitants of the town of OTSEGO assembled for the purpose of celebrating the anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America, where a Liberty Pole, on an elevated piece of ground, was erected, eighty five feet in height, with the American colors flying.

The order of the day being called for, a respectable volunteer company of Infantry, under the command of Lt. CALVIN UNDERWOOD, paraded on a green in front of Esquire LATHROP’s house, where the following Toasts were delivered.

1st. The Independence of the U. States of America -- May it be as lasting as time; and those who attempt to destroy it, let the majesty of the People frown into oblivion forever. (6 cheers) 2d. James Madison -- May he not stray from the neutral path. (3 cheers) 3d. George Clinton: the good old patriot and sage -- May our nation be blessed with his counsel for many years to come. (6 cheers) NOTE: Clinton was Governor of New York from 1777-1795, and from 1801-1804, and served as Vice President from 1805 until his death in 1812.

4th. Thomas Jefferson, our late beloved President -- May happiness attend him in his retirement. (6 cheers) 5th. Daniel D. Tompkins, Governor of the state of New York -- When the righteous bear rule, the People rejoice. (6 cheers) NOTE: Tompkins, the recently re-elected Governor of New York; would become Vice President under President Monroe from 1817- 1825. 6th. John Broome, our worthy Lieut. Governor. (3 cheers)

NOTE: Broome was Lieutenant Governor from 1804 until his death in August 1810. Broome County, and the Town of Broome in Schoharie County, are named for him.

7th. Agriculture, Manufactures and Commerce without tribute! 8th. May the tongue falter, and the hand wither, that justify the insults of a foreign nation. (3 cheers) 9th. The memory of Gen.

Washington -- His name will be ever dear to America  (silence observed)10th. May all good men be great, and great men honest.... May we have no hypocrite nor knave in our general or state government. (3 cheers) 11th. The American Farmers.... The Hull of the political barque (ship). Without them the rigging would never stand. (3 cheers) 12th. May the People of the United States be virtuous and from the intrigues of Lawyers; deception of Doctors; Holy fraud of Priests, and lying Printers!! (6 cheers) 13th. The Heroes of the Revolution....Their names will ever be dear to the real friends of America. (3 cheers) 14th. Equal liberty, without licentiousness. (3 cheers) 15th. A permanent Embargo upon the lips of falsehood and detraction (3 cheers) 16th. John Adams, late President of the United States of America.... Though the Essex Junto have palmed their monarchial measures upon him, yet when his country calls, he exposes their nefarious plots.

(6 cheers) NOTE:

The ``Essex Junto’’ was a Federalist scheme in Massachusetts to secede from the United States in 1802; President Adams was frequently accused of wanting to become King.

17th. The fair Daughters of America.... May virtue adorn their lives, and their arms never embrace an enemy oftheir country. (3 cheers

COMMENT: It was customary at Fourth of July celebrations to give as many toasts as there were States in the Union at the time. This same paper carried the toasts (and other activities) honoring the Fourth of July in Cherry Valley, Milford, and Unadilla, all of which were specifically and enthusiastically partisan on behalf of the Republican (Jeffersonian) party.


The following gentlemen, to wit, Gouverneur Morris, Stephen Van Rensselaer, De Witt Clinton, Simeon De Witt, William North, Thomas Eddy, and Peter B. Porter, appointed by the legislature of this state, at its last session, to explore the most practicable route for improving the Inland Navigation from Hudson’s river to Lake Ontario and Lake Erie, have entered upon the duties of their appointment; -- an appointment which in its result promises the highest advantages to the community. Albany Gazette.

COMMENT: Thus began the work which ended in the Erie Canal, and which entirely transformed both the State and City of New York.

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