Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame

May 23, 2013

Meteors Strikes

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Cooperstown Crier

---- — From the Otsego Herald

for Saturday, May 22, 1813

Compiled, with comments

by HUGH C. MacDOUGALL

Meteor Falls in Connecticut

New Haven, April 26. A short account of a METEOR, which was seen in this city by a number of gentlemen, on the evening of Saturday the 20th ultimo. [last].

The time of its first appearance was about 15 minutes before 10 o’clock. It continued visible for 6 or 8 seconds ... The writer saw the light which it yielded from the first; although he did not see the body itself until it had been in sight from 2 to 3 seconds.

It consisted of a body and a tail. The body was an ellipsis, with the ends of the transverse somewhat pointed ... The length of the tail was not far from five times the apparent diameter of the sun ... For two-fifths of its length it was an acute decreasing cone; the remainder was an uniform stripe of light. The color of the body was yellower than that of the moon, and its brilliancy obviously greater than that of the tail. The illumination was so strong that standing objects cast very distinct shadows.

Soon after the writer first saw it, numerous sparks of fire apparently snapped from it, and went out immediately. A short time before the meteor disappeared, three much larger pieces separated from it ...

The meteor was itself visible a second or more after their separation from it. It disappeared all at once ... It seemed suddenly to have left the atmosphere, and to have gone in an instant behind some substance absolutely opaque.

A short time after its disappearance, a bright flash was seen in that part of the sky where the meteor was first discovered — this lasted perhaps a second.

About eight minutes after the meteor was gone, a very loud report was heard in the direction of that part of the sky where it vanished. This was accompanied by a very sensible jar, but had little or no roar or echo. The sound was not like thunder, nor like the report of a cannon. It was sharper and quicker than either ...

The illumination was seen by a considerable number of persons and the report was heard extensively ... It is suspected that the meteor was seen further north, by a greater number of persons ... 

COMMENT: This account was written by Sereno Edwards Dwight (1786-1850), a son of Yale President Timothy Dwight, who was at the time an attorney in New Haven. It was frequently reprinted. In 1817 Dwight was ordained as a Congregationalist Minister, and served as Pastor of Boston’s Park Street Church until 1816. He was for a year Chaplain of the U.S. Senate, and served as President of Hamilton College in Clinton from 1833-1835. He was author, among other works, of a 10 volume life of Jonathan Edwards.

Battle at Fort Meigs

Huron, May 3, 1813. To Erastus Granger, Esq. Dear Sir, I left Lower Sandusky [Ohio] about 8 o’clock this morning. The British have attacked Gen. [William Henry] Harrison at the Miami [Maumee] Rapids; the attack commenced on Thursday [April 29], about the middle of the day and was continued when I left Sandusky.

Mr. Titus Hayes went from Sandusky on Thursday, for Miami, but could not get through; he got on Friday morning within a quarter of a mile of the Fort [Fort Meigs]; he thinks it is completely invested; there was a continual discharge of cannon and small arms.

We know not the force on either side; we hope Harrison will hold out, but are not without fears of a defeat. It is the opinion of many that the British have drawn all their forces from below, for this attack.

Yours, in haste. CALVIN PEASE.

COMMENT: Gen. Harrison did hold out against a major attack by British troops and their Indian allies. Fort Meigs was constructed in February 1813, the largest wooden walled fortification in North America. Calvin Pease (1776-1839) was an Ohio judge and state senator. Gov. Meigs of Ohio made him responsible for maintaining lines of communication between the Forts in Ohio, and he organized the riders that carried dispatches for General Harrison during the siege of Fort Meigs in May 1813. He was writing to Erastus Granger (1765-1826), a judge in Buffalo.

New Shoemaker

Boot & Shoe-Making. NEW STAND. J. T. Fuller has taken a room one door south of the stand lately occupied by Mr. Newcomb, and directly over the office of Messrs. Jordan & Birdsall, where he will be always ready to wait on those who may wish to be provided with FASHIONABLE BOOTS & SHOES.

Having availed himself of the experience of some of the first [class] workmen in Albany, he flatters himself he shall be able to please such of his customers as are desirous of combining taste with convenience and durability. Any kind of grain will be received in payment, and a reasonable credit given.

Ladies Morocco Shoes and Slippers in the newest style, kept on hand, and made on the shortest notice.

One or two Journeymen, who are good workmen will receive encouragement if application is made soon.

Cooperstown, May 8, 1813.

Embassy to Russia

On Friday the cartel ship Neptune, Capt. Jones, left Philadelphia for St. Petersburg. Messrs. Gallatin and Bayard were to embark at Newcastle on Sunday. That their mission may speedily terminate in a treaty, honorable and advantageous to the United States, must be the wish of every true friend of the country....

COMMENT: The Swiss-born Democratic-Republican Albert Gallatin (1761-1849) served as secretary of the Treasury from 1801-1814, as well as senator (1793-1794) and congressman (1795-1801) from Pennsylvania, and as U.S, Minister to France (1816-1823) and to Great Britain (1826-27). James Bayard (1767-1815), was a Federalist senator (1804-1813) from Delaware. Although Great Britain refused to accept Russia as a mediator, Gallatin and Bayard were key members of the U.S. delegation that negotiated the Peace Treaty of 1814 with Great Britain, at Ghent.