The Croghan Celebration. 73
three tremendous cheers. The day was a glorious one for the
cause of freedom." This of course foreshadows the civil war.
"Who used Old Betsy last?" asks the Journal of January
23, 1857. "It has been standing in the street for several weeks
now. Captain Parrish should see to this old servant."
In a long article on the celebration of August 2, 1860, the
Journal says: "At 6 o'clock Captain Parrish brought out 'Old
Betsy' and fired a salute of thirteen rounds. Soon after the peo-
ple of the county began to pour in. Cassius M. Clay was the
orator of the day." At the celebration of 1852 Thomas L Haw-
kins, a well-known Methodist preacher and the town poet, who
had been appointed commissary of the fort after the battle of
Fort Stephenson, read a poem addressed to the old six-pounder,
apostrophizing her as Betsy Croghan, a name by which she is
frequently called. This poem is printed below. In another
poem on Croghan's victory, Mr. Hawkins calls her "Our Bess,"
while tradition has it that the garrison called her "Good Bess."
But "Old Betsy" she is now and ever will be in local and na-
tional parlance. Little children play about her, the birds often
build their nests in her mouth, visitors pass curious hands over
her breech, and young reporters take her photograph and write
"story" about her. After all she is the only one left who saw
our hero in battle, who heard the quick orders of those two days'
fight, who faced the oncoming veterans of Wellington's troops
and settled it that they should rest thereafter in Lower Sandusky
"Old Betsy's" voice will probably never be heard again, but
as she stands her silent guard over the remains of George Cro-
ghan, on the scene of their great victory, she "yet speaketh."
THOMAS L. HAWKINS.
Hail! thou old friend, of Fort MeGee
Little did I expect again to see,
And hear thy voice of victory,
Thou defender of Ohio!
74 Ohio Arch. and Hist. Society Publications.
I wonder who it was that sought thee,
To victory's ground again hath brought thee
From strangers' hands at length hath caught thee;
He is a friend to great Ohio!
He is surely worthy of applause,
To undertake so good a cause,
Although a pleader of her laws,
And statutes of Ohio.
What shame thy blockhouse is not standing,
Thy pickets as at first commanding,
Protecting Sandusky's noble landing,
The frontier of Ohio!
Thy pickets, alas! are all unreared,
No faithful sentinel on guard,
Nor band of soldiers well prepared,
Defending great Ohio.
Where have the upthrown ditches gone,
By British cannon rudely torn?
Alas! with grass they are o'ergrown,
Neglected by Ohio.
O tell me where thy chieftains all-
Croghan, Dudley, Miller, Ball,
Some of whom I know did fall
In defending of Ohio.
Canst thou not tell how Proctor swore,
When up yon matted turf he tore,
Which shielded us from guns a score,
He poured upon Ohio?
And how Tecumseh lay behind you;
With vain attempts he tried to blind you,
And unprepared, he'd find you,
And lead you from Ohio.
Perhaps like Hamlet's ghost, you've come,
This day to celebrate the fame
Of Croghan's honored, worthy name,
The hero of Ohio.
The Croghan Celebration. 75
I greet thee! Thou art just in time
To tell of victory most sublime,
Though told in unconnected rhyme;
Thou art welcome in Ohio.
But since thou canst thyself speak well,
Now let thy thundering voice tell
What bloody carnage then befell
The foes of great Ohio.
(And then she thundered loud.)
PROCTOR'S REPORT OF THE BATTLE OF FORT STEPHENSON.
The following letter, recently unearthed by Col. Webb C.
Hayes in the Canadian Archives at Ottawa, is most interesting
as giving General Proctor's own account of the battle in which
he was so badly worsted. It is addressed to Sir George Provist,
Lieut. General, at Kingston, and reads:
"SIR: It being absolutely requisite for several urgent reasons that
my Indian force should not remain unemployed, and being well aware
I was, very contrary to my judgment, necessitated to go to the
Miami, in the vicinity of the enemy's fort, where I remained a few days
in the hope that General Harrison might come to the relief of the fort
which was invested in the Indian mode, when finding that the Indians
were returning to Detroit and Amherstberg I moved to Lower Sandusky
where, however, we could not muster more hundreds of Indians than
I might reasonably have expected thousands. The neighborhood of
Sandusky, and the settlement on the Huron river, eight miles below it,
could have afforded cattle sufficient to have fed my whole Indian force
for some time, had they been induced to accompany us. Sandusky is