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Title: A Leaf From the pages of Early Days
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Away back in 1853-almost sixty years ago-Enos Canutt, then the editor of the Wabash Commercial of Williamsport, had an editorial in which he was in dead earnest when he said:

"Williamsport is pretty well situated on the west bank of the Wabash river, in the vicinity of beautiful, romantic scenery, sulphur springs, etc., which are being visited by thousands every year, and it is the county seat of Warren county, one of the most fertile in Indiana; she now furnishes about five hundred thousand bushels of corn, fifteen or twenty thousand head of hogs for the markets and home consumption, besides many thousand cattle every year. This county has within her borders some of the largest and most beautiful farms in the whole western world, and is well supplied with water and water-power. Williamsport has at present six dry goods stores, one clothing store, one hardware store, three grocery and provision stores, besides three large warehouses which are doing an extensive business; a good steam mill and the usual number of mechanical shops to correspond to the number of inhabitants. With the advantages of navigation on the Wabash & Erie canal and the river, and as nature has so situated the locality as to command the trade of an extensive country, we know no town in the valley of the Wabash that presents equal advantages to persons wishing to locate in a healthy place."

Among the curiosities in way of business cards and merchants' standing advertisements, as found in the files of the Wabash Commercial during the years of the early fifties, the following are samples: "NEW GROCERY AND PROVISIONS.-The undersinged has established himself in the above business in the store-room recently occupied by Samuel Landon, on Main street, immediately under the Commercial office, where may be found at all times amongst other things-Coffee, tea, sugar, molasses, rice, fish, tobacco, tar, cheese, pepper, spice, ginger, salaratus, nails, candles, soap; also pure liquors of all kinds at wholesale and retail, for medicinal purposes only. Carry flour, corn meal and potatoes constantly, and sell at the market prices, besides many other articles too numerous to mention. Anyone wishing to purchase family groceries are invited to call.


(April 13, 1853.)

A book store advertisement runs thus: "B. H. BOYD & Co. dealer in school books, Rays, Smiths, Davies and several other Arithmetics, Olney's Mitchells, Morse and Smith's Geographies; Kurkman's and Smiths Grammars and many other school books."

A dry goods firm had the following: "Dress goods, Domesticks, Brown muslains, Bleached muslains, Bed ticks, Apron checks, Summer goods; twenty sacks prime Reio Coffee; 25 barrels extra N. O. sugar; 20 barrels good N. O. Molasses; 10 barrels rice; 6 chests of tea; 8 boxes chewing tobacco; 6 barrels Vinegar; 100 kegs assorted nails; 10 boxes 8X10 glass; 4 boxes 10X15 glass; 20 kegs pure white lead; 2 kegs red lead; one box Black; 300 pounds of putty; 2 barrels of linseed oil; one barrel tanner's oil; 100 barrels superfine flour; 5 barrels dried apples; 2 barrels dried peaches; 25 clocks-Gothic, square or round-thirty and eight hour clocks.


The bakery of Williamsport in 1854 carried the following notice in the Commercial: "Peter Mohn BAKER and CONFECTIONER, Williamsport, Indiana, will bake and keep constantly on hand Bread, and cakes of different kinds, Crackers, cheese, Raisins, candies, nuts, beer and cider. All of these in best quality and to which I invite the patronage of this town and country. Choice cakes and pies can be had for Christmas and New Years.
"September 28, 1853...................."P. MOHN."

Boyd & Company, book dealers, come out with a new notice saying: "Websters Dictionary-unabridged; Rollins History, Dick's Complete works, Josephus, Clark's Commentaries on the Holy Scriptures, Uncle Tom's Cabin, The Napoleon Dynasty (new and popular work)."

A notice appeared in the editorial column of the Commercial in February, 1854, showing the shipments of packed pork which reads thus: "Number of hogs packed at Williamsport for the packing season, 7,300; Attica, 6,600; Covington, 3,500; Perryville, 5,600."

[Page 315-317.]

Date: 1/1/1913
Origin: Past and Present of Fountain and Warren Counties Indiana
Author: Thomas A. Clifton, Editor
Record ID: 00001240
Type: Book
Source Archive: Williamsport-Washington Township Public Library
Date Entered: 8/10/2001
Collection: Williamsport-Washington Township Public Library
Entered By: Leslie J. Rice

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