April 15, 1865

Macomb Eagle

Oil in McDonough County.

            Blessed be St. Peter-Oleum! The oil region is not confined to the mountains of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia. – The coal regions of Illinois, there is reason to believe, are rich with oil. Our own county, which is known to possess extensive beds of the best coal in the West, offers peculiar inducements to prospectors for petroleum. – Surface indications of the existence of this oil have been observed in several localities in this county. The strongest of these indications have for some time been noticed on the land of Mr. Wilson and Mr. Saffell, some three miles southwest of Macomb. These indications are pronounced by persons who have examined the oil regions of Pennsylvania, to be precisely similar to the surface evidences in that region. So well satisfied are the gentlemen owning the land that oil can be had for the boring, that they are making the necessary arrangements for testing the extent of the oil reservoirs which underlie their land. A steam engine is already on the spot ready for work, and the other apparatus for boring will shortly be procured.

These indications of oil have also been observed in the vicinity of Colchester, and as soon as the spring rains hold up a little, they will no doubt attract attention. In addition to this, the same indications of petroleum are strongly manifest at certain points within the corporate limits of Macomb. Truly, unless the sequel shall falsify the appearances, there is a mine of wealth slumbering in the bowels of McDonough county, compared to which the treasures of California are but as dross.


            A Novelty. – It is not so much a novelty either (when we know about it) because when two persons pleases every one they come in contact with, it is not so strange that they should succeed in what they undertake to do. This is being proven by Hawkins & Philpot, photographers, they being of that kind, it is no wonder that they have so many calls for pictures.


            First National Bank of Macomb. – This institution, organized under the laws of the United States, will be opened for business next Monday. The advertisement in another column will show that some of the ablest and soundest financial men of our city are directors of the Bank, and whose names are a sufficient guarantee for success in its operations and safety to its patrons. The books of the Bank will be kept open for further subscription to its capital stock, and we recommend those who may have surplus funds or Government bonds, to invest them in this Bank. The facilities which it will afford to our business men will be duly appreciated by the public.


            Save Your Money. – If you want to save money when buying your clothing, go to the store of Dernham & Jehlinger, on the west side of the square, two doors south of Brown’s Hotel. They have a mammoth stock of new clothing, which they are selling at less than wholesale prices. They also have a large stock of Gents’ Furnishing Goods which they are selling very cheap. Give them a call.


            New Firm. – Mr. D. G. Tunnicliff has associated with himself in the practice of law, Mr. Asa Matteson, of Galesburg. These gentlemen are able lawyers, and we are assured that all business entrusted to their care will receive prompt attention.


            → Dr. S. Ritchey of the City Drug Store has lately been improving his store. It now presents as neat an appearance as any business house in Macomb. The Dr. has procured the services of Mr. J. W. Miller, as accomplished prescriptionist and drug clerk. All orders will receive prompt attention. – Give him a call.


            To the Public. – As there will, in all probability, be a large turn out of the people of the county, on Saturday next, we would most respectfully say to them that George Bailey, on the east side, will sell PRINTS AT TWELVE AND A HALF CENTS PER YARD. This is no HUMBUG, got up in order to deceive, but if you don’t believe it, go and see for yourselves.


            Small Pox. – Dr. Blaisdell, has some fresh vaccine virus and is ready to vaccinate all who may call at his office on the south side of the square.


            → Small Pox in Macomb. – This disease made is appearance in our city one day last week, and there is already three cases of it. We think it the duty of the city authorities to take steps to prevent the further spread of this loathsome disease. Let them either build a pest house and remove those afflicted to it, or else fence up the streets where the disease is located.


            → We notice that Knapper & Cyrus have been putting in a new front to their store room, and otherwise improving the appearance of the Old corner. They are enterprising and gentlemanly men, and those in need of groceries will do well to give them a call.


            → At the annual township election the republicans elected 5 supervisors, and the Unionists 11. We have not yet learned whether the bounty tax was carried or not in this county, but probably will by next Christmas.


History of the Plow.

            The first plow is supposed to have been the rude branch of a tree, cut so as to have a cleft end, the point of which, dragged along the surface of the ground, scraped a furrow in which seeds were thrown. It soon occurred to the husbandmen that he might receive his own labor by yoking an animal to the long arm of this primitive instrument; then arose the necessity for a handle, affixed to the back, so that the plough might be guided. – The strength of the animal soon wore away or broke the cleft of the branch, and this necessity gave rise to the invention of means for attaching moveable shares, first of wood, and next of stone, copper, or iron, worked to a shape adapted to the cutting of furrows, so as to avoid the excessive labor arising from the plowman’s having to lean upon his plow with all his weight to press it into the ground. – Just such an implement as these conjectures indicate was used by the Saxons. Some of the facts connected with the history of the plow are almost incredible. In Ireland there once prevailed a custom of “ploughing by the horse’s tail.” The draught pole was lashed to the tail of the horse, and as no harness was employed, two men were necessary, one to guide and press upon the plow, the other to direct the horse, which he did by walking backwards before the miserable animal, and beating it heavily on the head on either side, according to the direction required. This custom prevailed for a considerable time in spite of a law which was passed in the early part of the seventh century, imposing severe penalties upon persons found guilty of “ploughing by the horse’s tail,” as in the act mentioned and described. – From the Rev. C. Otway’s “Sketches in Erris and Tyrawly,” it appears that the barbarous practice lingered in the remote west of Ireland late as the year 1840! And from a paper, “On the breed of horses in Scotland in the Ancient Times,” printed in the first volume of the ‘Transactions of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland,’ we find that the same custom was practiced in that country as late as the year 1792. – Progress of Agriculture.


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