05 October 2012

New Towns and New Territories

A correspondent writing from the new settlement of Fontenelle, in Nebraska Territory, gives an interesting account of the way in which new places grow:

"The plan adapted by the pioneers of this colony and place is worthy of example by families East, who propose migrating westward. In the Fall of 1854, a colony of about fifty families was formed in Quincy, Illinois, to migrate in the following Spring to Nebraska, in the meantime sending on a few to make claims therefore, improve and hold the same until the colonists come on. These pioneers, after looking over the country selected this point. A few houses were put up during the Fall and Winter, and in May the colonists came on and distributed the property thus selected. The shares numbered fifty, and each number paid $100. The same shares now sell for $500. As soon as the distribution was over, the colonists commenced improving and building. Many new ones have been added, ad at present the prospective of the town or members of the Nebraska Colonization Company, comprise people from many States. Fontenelle is new, perhaps, about the third town of importance in the Territory.

"The location of the town site surpasses anything in point of beauty in the country — commanding a view of the Big Bend of the Platte, and the wide extended Platte Valley. Game of all kinds abound in this section — deer, elk, turkeys, ducks, geese, prairie chickens, etc. The streams abound in fish of the finest flavor, and indeed, I anticipate in my stay here to enjoy all these sports to my fill."

May 15, 1856. Manitowoc Tribune 3(1): 4.

This text was edited to conform with standards for presentation of quoted material.