Thomas S. Hinde

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Thomas S. Hinde
Thomas S Hinde Sketch.jpg
A rough sketch (the only known portrait of him)
BornThomas Spottswood Hinde
(1785-04-19)April 19, 1785
Hanover County, Virginia
DiedFebruary 9, 1846(1846-02-09) (aged 60)
Mount Carmel, Illinois
Resting placeSandhill Cemetery
Mount Carmel, Illinois
Pen nameTheophilus Arminius
Occupation Real Estate Entrepreneur
Methodist Minister
Genre Methodism
Notable worksThe Pilgrams Songster
Editor of The Fredonian
Biography of William Beauchamp
Biography of Thomas Hinde
Biography of Mary Todd Hubbard
SpouseBelinda Bradford Hinde(1809–1827)
Sarah Doughty Cavileer Neal(1827–1846)
ChildrenJames B. Hinde
John M. Hinde
Martha Hinde
Edmund C. Hinde
Charles T. Hinde
Belinda Bradford Hinde
Relatives Thomas Hinde(father)
Mary Todd Hubbard(mother)
Frederick Hinde Zimmerman (grandson)
Harry Hinde (grandson)
Charles H. Constable (son-in-law)
Jacob Zimmerman (son-in-law)

Signature Thomas S. Hinde Signature.jpg
Military career
Service/branch United States Army
Years of service1812–1814
RankHead of Prisoners
Battles/wars War of 1812

Thomas Spottswood Hinde (April 19, 1785 – February 9, 1846) was an American newspaper editor, opponent of slavery, author, historian, real estate investor, Methodist minister and a founder of the city of Mount Carmel, Illinois. Members of the Hinde family were prominent in Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, and Illinois. His sons Charles T. Hinde became a shipping magnate and Edmund C. Hinde an adventurer. He was the father-in-law of judge Charles H. Constable.


Hinde was an active businessman, pursuing real estate, construction, and publishing opportunities in Kentucky, Ohio and Illinois. In his early years, Hinde publicly opposed slavery. He also used his newspaper, The Fredonian, in Chillicothe, Ohio between 1806 and 1808, to highlight issues about Indian treaties and the conspiracy of Aaron Burr. He served in the War of 1812. In later years he was a pioneer in the settlement of Indiana and Illinois, and the expansion of the Methodist Church in these areas. He contributed to the Madoc Tradition and was a noted historian and biographer. Hinde cofounded the Wabash Navigation Company, which engaged in real estate speculation and dam construction. The company dammed the Wabash River next to Hinde's property, creating the Grand Rapids Dam. The dam was abandoned by the Federal government in 1931.

Hinde was an ordained Methodist minister and traveled extensively to advance the interests of the church. He was a pioneering circuit rider in the early 1800s in Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri. Hinde wrote and published religious articles in many leading publications. Francis Asbury, one of the first two bishops of the Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States, considered Hinde important to the church. He frequently met with him and mentioned him in his journals. Historian Lyman Draper spent more than twenty years collecting documents by and about the Hinde family, along with papers of other important figures of the Trans-Allegheny West. The Draper Manuscript Collection at the Wisconsin Historical Society holds 47 volumes of Hinde's personal papers, donated by his family after his death.

Early years

Thomas S. Hinde was born April 19, 1785 in Hanover County, Virginia, to Thomas Hinde (1737–1828) and Mary Todd Hubbard (1734–1830), as the seventh of eight children. [1] His father was an English doctor who served as a physician to Patrick Henry and General James Wolfe. [2] Little is known about Hinde's early years except that the family moved from Virginia to Newport, Kentucky, in 1797 when his father was awarded a land grant of 10,000 acres (40 km2) for his services in the American Revolutionary War. [3] In a letter to President James Madison many years later, Hinde related that while walking to school in the wilderness of Kentucky, he once successfully fought off a wolf and a panther. [4] Daniel Boone [5] and Simon Kenton were neighbors of the Hinde family while they lived in Kentucky, and the three men grew up as colleagues. [6] One of Hinde's sisters married Richard Southgate; his nephews William Wright Southgate and William Taylor became prominent lawyers and politicians.

After a conversion by his mother Mary and older sister Susannah in 1798, all of Hinde's family, including his father, converted to Christianity as Methodists. Thomas delayed a while. Shortly afterward the younger Hinde became close friends with Francis Asbury, who became a prominent bishop in the church. [7] Hinde later described the conversion of his youngest sister, Martha Harrison Hinde, in an 1827 article published in the Methodist Review under his pen name, Theophilus Arminius. [8] Hinde recounted Bishop Asbury visiting his father's home in 1803 and telling Martha that she had better find God, because before he could meet her again she would be dead. The bishop's prophecy came true when Martha died in 1811 without having seen Asbury again. [9] Hinde said she had converted before her death [10] and tried to convert the nonbelievers in the room while on her deathbed. [11] He shared a letter in which his sister had tried to convert her close friends. [11] Hinde named his first daughter after his late sister Martha. [12] Hinde did not immediately convert but attended Methodist camp meetings of the period. During his life, he frequently wrote about the importance of the camp meeting in bringing Christianity and democracy to the west. [13]

In 1801, Hinde got a job as deputy clerk for the Kentucky Court of Appeals. William Kavanaugh, the husband of Hinde's older sister Hannah, assigned him to Achilles Sneed of Frankfort. He received a good legal education with Sneed, who was Clerk of the Court of Appeals. [14] During this time, Hinde became acquainted with many of the state's leading men, and acquired a knowledge of the law. He also developed a reputation as one of Kentucky's most efficient businessmen. Hinde wrote to Henry Clay that he was the first lawyer whom Hinde heard address a court. Hinde resided in a boarding house, shared with many of the leading judges and politicians of the day, where he strengthened his personal and political contacts. [15]

Newspaper publisher

From an early age, Hinde opposed slavery. Although their parents owned slaves, he and his siblings repudiated slavery on religious grounds. Hinde's opposition increased and eventually he and other friends became outspoken critics of the institution in Kentucky, where slavery was commonplace in the middle and western parts of the state. In the Great Awakening, Methodists were prominent among those who opposed slavery, although they also converted slaves and welcomed them into congregations. In Kentucky Hinde joined other Methodist ministers in the abolitionist movement. [13]

In a letter to President Madison, Hinde attributed his opposition to slavery to the influence of his mother. He wrote:

In 1805, Messrs. Wood and Street, from Richmond, Va., found their way to Kentucky. Friendly considerations led me to patronize them. This was done through the solicitations of a young friend from Virginia. They commenced a paper, published in 1806, called the 'Western World.' Imbibing strong prejudices against slavery, perhaps from my mother's repeating, in my infancy, the nurse's songs composed by Cowper, designed to make such impressions. In June 1806, to the great astonishment of my friends, I left Kentucky, with all the flattering prospects a youth could have, and hastened to Ohio. Connecting circumstances, and from hints that fell from Wood and others, a deep impression had been made on my mind, that an eventful period was fast approaching. [4]

Aaron Burr Vanderlyn Burr.jpg
Aaron Burr

Because of the slavery issue, in 1806 Hinde moved from Kentucky to Chillicothe in the free state of Ohio. In partnership with his brother-in-law R.D. Richardson, beginning in 1806, he edited and published a newspaper titled the Fredonian. Fredonian was a sonorous name for 'a citizen of the United States.' In later years it was applied to an American-inspired rebellion to separate Texas from Mexico.

From early in his career, Hinde fought the projects of Aaron Burr. He collected and published material in The Fredonian related to what he said was Burr's conspiracy to overthrow the US government. Hinde sent the evidence to Henry Clay, a longtime friend of his family and later secretary of state, but the papers disappeared.

While working at the Kentucky Court of Appeals, Hinde had developed a close relationship with George Madison and his nephew John Madison. In 1829 Hinde wrote to their relation, President James Madison, to provide him with information about the Burr conspiracy for a political history the president was said to be writing. Madison denied the project, but asked Hinde to send copies of The Fredonian to include in his presidential papers. Hinde sent newspaper issues dealing with the Burr Conspiracy. The copies of the newspaper were filed with the President's papers. [16]

After moving to Ohio, Hinde was unanimously elected by the Ohio House of Representatives to the position of clerk pro tempore. [17] He held the position for three years before shifting to focus on his successful speculation in military lands. [18]

Marriages and family

On October 19, 1809, with minister William Lynes officiating, Hinde at the age of 24 married Belinda Bradford, the daughter of the late James Bradford, in Hamilton County, Ohio. [19] His father-in-law was a descendant of William Bradford of Plymouth Colony. He had been killed in 1791 in St. Clair's Defeat, and buried in Fort Recovery. [12]

Hinde and Belinda had three children: James B., John Madison, and Martha. The second son was named after Hinde's friend John Madison, a nephew of George Madison and a relative of James Madison. [4] The daughter Martha married Charles H. Constable, who became a prominent Illinois politician. He is notable for his decision as judge to allow four Union deserters to go free during the Civil War. [20] Belinda died in 1827.

In 1828, Hinde married Sarah Neal (Daugherty) Cavileer. They had three children: Edmund C., Charles T. and Belinda. Edmund was a pioneer who participated in the California Gold Rush; after his death, his journals were published. [21] Charles became a business tycoon in Southern California, playing a pivotal role in its development through his shipping expertise. [22] Belinda married Jacob Zimmerman, a successful newspaper editor and owner who in later years held a number of political offices in Illinois. [23]

Conversion to Methodism

An engraving of a Methodist camp meeting in 1819 (Library of Congress). Methodist camp meeting (1819 engraving).jpg
An engraving of a Methodist camp meeting in 1819 (Library of Congress).

Hinde was involved with the newspaper for less than two years. He converted from Deism to Methodism and decided that operating a political journal conflicted with his new religious views. After retiring from the newspaper business, he engaged in locating military lands and in land speculation. For the rest of his life, Hinde published editorials in newspapers and religious publications. [1] He organized several camp meetings with other preachers, saying that the camp meeting could unite the different Protestant denominations. [24]

At times, Francis Asbury ventured into the wilderness to visit Hinde. An 1856 account states,

In 1810 Bishop Asbury visited an obscure part of the western country (Kanawha) which was then a wilderness, and pleasantly told the Rev. Thomas S. Hinde that he had visited the region in order that the people might see and know their superintendent; remarking, "The shepherd ought to know the flock, and the flock the shepherd: they ought to know what man it is that governs them, and I have come nearly one hundred miles out of my way to see them." The writer exclaims, "O Asbury, the inhabitants of these hills and mountains will long make mention of thee!" [25]

Hinde is thought to have received his license to preach sometime around 1810. His first sermon was in Chillicothe in either 1807 or 1808, and people were so eager to hear him that they filled the church. The sermon was described as having " coherence in his discourse." During the sermon, Hinde repeatedly stated, "My bowels, my bowels!" [1]

Methodist circuit rider on horseback Circuit rider illustration Eggleston.png
Methodist circuit rider on horseback

According to a 19th-century account,

As a preacher, he was rather eccentric. He was not very fluent and gifted as a speaker, but had the power of engaging the attention of his hearers, and was very successful and useful in a revival of religion. He entertained rather singular views on the subject of the orders in the ministry, objecting to the order of deacons, and holding that the eldership is the only true order. In consequence of these peculiar views, he would never consent to be ordained a deacon, and therefore never entered into orders at all. [26]

Hinde became a circuit rider in the early 1800s. While his circuit varied over the years, he served large portions of Kentucky, Indiana, Illinois, and Missouri. [1] Much of the territory he covered was generally lawless, violent and dangerous. Circuit riders served numerous churches and were supposed to plant new ones in new or underserved communities. They were critical to the development of the frontier.

An avid writer, Hinde wrote mostly about Methodism and church songs. He wrote a popular hymnal entitled The Pilgrams' songster; or, A choice collection of spiritual songs, which was said to have sold more than 10,000 copies. [27] Rev. Thomas S. Hinde was said to be, "...exceedingly earnest, and very zealous in promoting the interests of the Church and of religion and morality. His zeal, however, was rather of the ascetic kind; and he usually took prominent part in the arraignment and trial of brethren accused of offenses." He was quoted as saying that he was,"...doing God service." [1]

Indian affairs

At Vincennes in 1810, Tecumseh loses his temper when William Henry Harrison refuses to rescind the Treaty of Fort Wayne. Tecumseh ante Harrison.jpeg
At Vincennes in 1810, Tecumseh loses his temper when William Henry Harrison refuses to rescind the Treaty of Fort Wayne.

Growing up in Kentucky in the late 1790s, Hinde learned of the danger of Indian attacks. After moving to Chillicothe, he became interested in prehistoric Indian sites. In a letter to President James Madison, he mentioned taking friends to Windship's mound (now the Hopewell Culture National Historical Park), but focused on his opposition to slavery, saying he called

their attention to the surrounding scenery, my former pursuits, my friends, my country, my prospects—all these had been abandoned for the pride of opinion, against the entailment and perpetuation of slavery upon the rising generation! I remember their looks when I remarked, that after all, (pointing to the sun eclipsed,) I spoke of the gloom that overshadowed my future prospects! [4]

Hinde purchased property from William Mc'Intosh near the Wabash River, an area that had been a Piankashaw Indian campground. It contained numerous earthwork mounds built by cultures that predated the Piankashaw. [28]

Hinde met the Shawnee chief Tecumseh in Chillicothe and in Vincennes, Indiana, during either the 1810 or the 1811 meeting between Tecumseh and William Henry Harrison at Grouseland. [29] Hinde also met prominent Shawnee Blue Jacket and reported on him for the local newspapers. [30] One source says that Hinde played a crucial role in negotiating early Indian treaties signed with the United States government, without defining his actions. [31]

War of 1812

Oliver Hazard Perry Battle erie.jpg
Oliver Hazard Perry

Hinde served in the U.S. Army in the War of 1812 under William Henry Harrison, then governor of the Indiana Territory. Both from Virginia families, the two men were close in age. [1] [32] Hinde was made responsible for prisoners of war starting in 1813, when he was about 27 or 28 years old. [33]

Hinde served under Captain Oliver Hazard Perry, who was the commander at the Battle of Lake Erie. Captain Perry's decisive victory ensured American control of the lake, improved American morale after a series of defeats, and compelled the British to fall back from Detroit. In 1813, Hinde was placed in charge of prisoners captured at this battle. [33] [34]

Founding Mount Carmel

Market St. in Mount Carmel, Illinois Mount Carmel Market.JPG
Market St. in Mount Carmel, Illinois

In the early 1800s, Hinde purchased large land holdings in what would become Wabash County, Illinois. In 1817, he, William McDowell and William Beauchamp collectively founded the city of Mount Carmel, Illinois. All three men were ministers. They chose the Biblical name "Mount Carmel", because it meant "the garden of the Lord" and was a historic city in Palestine. According to one source:

The site chosen for the town was a point on the west bank of the Wabash opposite the mouth of the White River, and twenty-four miles southwest of Vincennes. This point was selected because of the available water power and of the likelihood that main roads from east to west would pass here. The town became a railroad and manufacturing center and justified the wisdom of its founders. An elaborate circular, called the "Articles of Association for the City of Mount Carmel," was issued at Chillicothe in 1817. The purpose of the association was announced to be "to build a city on liberal and advantageous principles, and to constitute funds for the establishment of seminaries of learning and for religious purposes." The proprietors reserved for themselves one-fourth of the lots, these being called "proprietors' lots;" one-fourth were called "private donation lots." The plan of survey and sale was described as follows: "The in-lots are six poles in front, and eleven and a half in back; containing each sixty-eight perches, nearly half an acre. The most of the out-lots contain four acres and eight square poles; some of them more, (five and six acres on the back range); and a few of them less. There are 748 in-lots, and 331 out-lots --1079 in the whole. [13]

Hinde donated the majority of the land for the city. Shortly after it was incorporated, he gave permission for city residents to use part of his land near the Wabash River as a "commons" for livestock. Hinde, Beauchamp and McDowell were granted permission by the legislature to establish a ferry on Hinde's land at the river. During this time Hinde did the primary survey work for the Grand Rapids Dam on the river. According to a local history published in 1883, he was believed to reside in a house located on the "bluff" in Mount Carmel. In letters to Congress written in the 1820s, Hinde said that he resided near the Grand Rapids Dam. [35] He wrote a poem about Mount Carmel and had it published in Ohio. [36]

Originally, Mount Carmel was located in Edwards County. After a drought in 1820 killed a majority of the settlers, the county seat was moved from Palmyra, Illinois to Albion. At that time Albion was settled primarily by English immigrants. The Americans from Mount Carmel and surrounding settlements were resentful and tried to return the county seat to Mount Carmel by force. During the bickering for the county seat location, Hinde ran for county commissioner in 1821 against John Buckles, receiving only two votes against Buckles' 151. In 1822 Hinde ran for the office of Illinois House of Representatives and narrowly lost to Gilbert T. Pell. On December 24, 1824 the Illinois Legislature resolved the county seat issue by creating Wabash County from the eastern half of Edwards County. [37]

Based on newspaper accounts, the lots held by Hinde did not sell quickly. More than 27 years after having developed the plans for Mount Carmel, Hinde was still advertising lots for sale there in national newspapers. In one advertisement Hinde said, "The place I offer is midway between St. Louis and Louisville and the next improvement will be the completion of the railroad connecting the two places, and a dam across the Great Wabash, at the Grand Rapids, at the junction of the White, Patoka, and Wabash, giving the greatest water power in the great West." [38]

Another source notes that Hinde and other founders "...may have been over zealous and puritanical in the construction of their laws... no theater or play-house shall ever be built within the boundary of the city; no person shall be guilty of drunkenness, profanity, sabbath-breaking, and many other offenses of greater magnitude, etc., he shall be subject to trial by the court of Mayor and on conviction, was disqualified from holding any office in the city, or the bank; was disqualified to vote; ostracism was to continue for three years after the commission of the so-called crimes." [39]

Around 1825, Hinde settled in Mount Carmel, leaving the Methodist circuit to focus on religious and historical writing, and business. He founded one of the first churches in the town and occasionally held Methodist gatherings at his home. On September 20, 1827 more than 27 Methodist ministers met in the upper room of his house. It was one of the largest gatherings of the time. [40]

Real estate disputes

After his father died in 1828, Hinde inherited real estate in Kentucky. [41] Shortly thereafter, he began investing in real estate in Ohio. [1] Property titles were frequently complicated in this period due to turnover of military lands, as well as issues related to acquisition of former Native American lands. Several of his Ohio property disputes reached the Supreme Court of the United States, including Hinde v. Vattier [42] and Mallow v. Hinde . [43]

Johnson v. M'Intosh

William M'Intosh was a former Revolutionary War veteran who had become a fur trader and investor in military lands along the Wabash River. [44] Hinde and M'Intosh lived on adjoining tracts of land near what would become the site of the Grand Rapids Dam. [45]

M'Intosh became associated with the Supreme Court Case of Johnson v. M'Intosh . [44] Chief Justice John Marshall, an acquaintance of Hinde and his father, [46] used the case to establish the "Discovery Doctrine," which ruled that the discovering people gain title over the indigenous peoples in respect to land title. [47] Hinde also knew Associate Justice Thomas Todd, a justice of the Kentucky Court of Appeals when Hinde served as the court's clerk. [14] In the case, in which Johnson and M'Intosh were claiming title to the same property, the Supreme Court ruled that private citizens could not purchase land from Native Americans, and therefore the plaintiff Johnson's land purchases were invalid. M'Intosh's land purchases from the Federal government were affirmed as legal. [47]

Hinde purchased a portion of M'Intosh's litigated property not long after the litigation. Correspondence between Hinde and M'Intosh discussing land sales form part of the Hinde documents at the Lyman Draper Manuscripts Collection in the Wisconsin Historical Society. [33] Due to the favorable ruling in the case, Hinde benefited greatly because of his large land holdings in the area. After the ruling had settled ownership issues between the Indians and settlers, Hinde founded the towns of Mt. Carmel, Powhaten, and Selima in the Illinois territory. [13]

Hinde v. Vattier

One of Hinde's own real estate disputes was based on property he owned in Cincinnati. The dispute was between the Hinde family and Charles Vattier. Vattier was a known scam artist and underworld giant in Cincinnati. One source described Vattier as owning "...a gambling empire, including grog shops, Bawdy houses and taverns." Vattier was involved in a number of other fraudulent real estate schemes with other people in Ohio. [48] In 1807 Vattier was convicted of burglary and larceny for stealing large sums of money from James Findlay, Receiver of Public Monies for the District of Cincinnati. [49] Hinde knew Findlay since they were both involved in exposing the Burr conspiracy and both were prominent in Ohio. [42] [50]

Allegedly, Vattier had tried to take title to a piece of property in Cincinnati already owned by the Hinde family. Hinde challenged Vattier in court. Henry Clay represented Hinde in the Ohio State Court proceedings. Hinde claimed that Vattier tried to use the lot to pay Findlay by claiming to have a bill of sale and title that was superior to the Hinde family. After more than fifteen years, the case reached the United States Supreme Court in 1833. The Court ruled that Vattier took title to the property illegally and that the property belonged to Hinde and his children. Originally owned by Hinde's father-in-law, James Bradford, after his death the property passed to Hinde's wife, Belinda (Bradford) Hinde. [42]

Wabash Navigation Company

Grand Rapids Dam 1906.jpg
Grand Rapids Dam
Dr John Jacob Lescher MD (1875).jpg
Dr. John Jacob Lescher

In 1825, Hinde joined the Wabash Navigation Company. Seventeen members of the company came from prominent families in Indiana and Illinois. The company had capital of more than $1 million. Hinde was one of the company's first nine directors and remained active until his death. The company charter was eventually approved by both the Illinois and Indiana legislatures. The company built a dam next to land Hinde owned. [13]

In a letter to Congress in 1842, Hinde stated that his goal was to connect the Wabash River with the Maumee River that flowed to Lake Erie. He cited in support the opinion of unnamed hunters and traders and George Washington's hope of connecting the waters of the east with the Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Hinde also declared, "...I have seen the whole wilderness of the West subdued and savages and wild beasts or prey receding before civilization and enterprise." He said that, on the Wabash from the Grand Rapids to Terre Haute, steamboats could navigate almost all year; therefore it was essential to connect the river to the Ohio. He also suggested that an armory should be built by the U.S. Government next to the proposed dam. [45]

Dr. John Lescher was a business partner and friend of Thomas S. Hinde. Both men invested in the Wabash Navigation Company. Lescher later joined Hinde's children in a lawsuit against the company. Not long after the death of Hinde, his son James and his son-in-law Charles H. Constable joined with Lescher and sued the company for entering their land and taking timber and other materials for the construction of dam. But, the company's charter permitted them to enter the land and take construction material without the owner's consent, forcing the owner to seek legal redress. The court ordered compensation. [51]

A letter written by Jacob Lescher in 1841 and submitted to Congress in support of the Grand Rapids Dam project and the building of a U.S. Armory, stated that he and Hinde owned more than 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) acres of land around the proposed dam site. Additional information submitted to Congress stated that the town of Powhatan was owned by Hinde and Lescher and was a "river addition" to Mount Carmel. The location of the town of Selima was not clearly stated, but was near the dam. [13] Hinde did the original surveying for Grand Rapids Dam. [52]

The wooden timber dam deteriorated and needed to be replaced in the late nineteenth century. On September 19, 1890, Congress appropriated money for the construction of a new dam, to be built by the Army Corps of Engineers. The report stated that the old dam had partially washed away and that the new dam would raise the water level by 11.5 feet. [53] According to an annual report to the Secretary of War in 1908, the mid-19th century lock and dam were "...not of a substantial character....," and "...rapidly deteriorated and became useless." The same report said that by March 31, 1881 expenditures for the dam were $317,845.44 and the government was forced to pay the Wabash Navigation Company an additional $7,000 to extinguish their franchise and purchase their property. [54]

Later years and legacy

Sons of Thomas S. Hinde
Edmund C. Hinde 1905.jpg
Edmund C. Hinde, 4th child of Thomas S. Hinde
Captain Hinde President Taft(1912).jpg
Charles T. Hinde, 5th child of Thomas S. Hinde, with President William Howard Taft

Hinde settled in Mount Carmel toward the end of his life. During Hinde's final years, he was an active letter writer and watched over his many business and real estate interests. [13] Hinde was prominent in church and Illinois society and compiled many documents and interviews. During his later years, he shared much of this information with various writers and publications. [55]

In his later writings, Hinde espoused some questionable theories such as the Hollow Earth theory and the Madoc tradition. Hinde was published in the Methodist Magazine, the "Short Sketches of Revivals of Religion in the Western Country" (incomplete), the Advocate and Journal (New York) and the Western Christian Advocate (Cincinnati). His writings have been described as, "...abound[ing] in vague philosophical and religious reflections-- this is especially true of his diaries-- thus making them of slight value...." [33]

Hinde dedicated a substantial amount of time to investigating the Madoc Tradition in North America. Madoc or Madog ab Owain Gwynedd was, according to folklore, a Welsh prince who sailed to America in 1170, more than 300 years before Christopher Columbus's voyage in 1492. Hinde interviewed hundreds of individuals on the topic. In 1824, Hinde wrote a letter to John S. Williams, editor of The American Pioneer regarding the Madoc Tradition. He claimed to have testimony from numerous sources that said Welsh people under Owen Ap Zuinch had come to America in the twelfth century, over 300 years before Christopher Columbus. Hinde claimed that in 1799, the remains of six soldiers had been dug up near Jeffersonville, Indiana with breastplates containing Welsh coats of arms. In 1799, John Sevier, the first governor of Tennessee, also wrote of the alleged discovery of six skeletons in brass armor bearing Welsh coat-of-arms. Hinde claimed that M'Intosh recounted that American Indians and Welshmen living on the Mississippi River were conversing in Welsh in the late 1700s. [55]

In an 1842 letter Hinde stated, "I have just returned from the East, having visited the Atlantic cities generally for the first time, after forty-five years pioneering in the wilderness of the West. I have been three time a citizen of Kentucky, twice of Ohio, and twice of Illinois." After returning from the visit, Hinde claimed that eastern ministers were unsuccessful because they underrated the people of the West. He said,

"If we expect to find on crossing the mountains a people either illiterate or ignorant as a body, we will assuredly, in many instances be disappointed. It too often happens, that one puffed up with self-importance, and possesses a conceited and heated imagination, will form wild conjectures as to men and things. We have been amused at the bewildered minds of such, with the 'whys' and 'wherefores'; and one of the most ridiculous whims of some, is to endeavor to press every thing into their own mould; and shape it, be it what it may, if possible, after their own manner, custom, or operation, forgetting that 'we have to take the world as it is, and not as we would have it to be.'" [13]

A large collection of Hinde's diaries are held among the Lyman Draper Manuscripts in the Wisconsin Historical Society. [33] In his diaries Hinde stated that he supported the Hollow Earth theory. [56] Throughout his life Hinde maintained correspondence with many of the prominent men of the day. His correspondents included James Madison, George Madison, Thomas Jefferson, Henry Clay, Simon Kenton, Daniel Boone, and John Marshall. [33]


Hinde was sick a few days before dying from "winter fever." [14] Hinde is buried in Sandhill Cemetery in Mount Carmel next to his daughter Belinda and his second wife, Sarah Doughty Cavileer Neal. The wrought iron fence surrounding their graves was paid for by his son Charles in the early 1900s. [57] Since he died at a relatively early age and his wife died shortly after him, his orphaned children were forced to live with other relatives or fend for themselves. Martha married Judge Charles H. Constable; together they looked after many of her younger siblings until they married or found work. Her brother Charles Hinde became a successful businessman and riverboat captain. One of Captain Hinde's accomplishments was investing in the Hotel del Coronado in San Diego, California. Hinde's grandson, Frederick Zimmerman, built the Grand Rapids Hotel on the Hinde family farm in Mount Carmel near the Grand Rapids Dam and Hanging Rock.

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The Wabash River is a 503-mile-long (810 km) river in Ohio and Indiana, United States, that flows from the headwaters near the middle of Ohio's western border northwest then southwest across northern Indiana turning south along the Illinois border where the southern portion forms the Indiana-Illinois border before flowing into the Ohio River. It is the largest northern tributary of the Ohio River. From the dam near Huntington, Indiana, to its terminus at the Ohio River, the Wabash flows freely for 411 miles (661 km). Its watershed drains most of Indiana. The Tippecanoe River, White River, Embarras River and Little Wabash River are major tributaries. The river's name comes from an Illini Indian word meaning "water over white stones".

Indiana Territory territory of the USA between 1800-1816

The Indiana Territory was created by a congressional act that President John Adams signed into law on May 7, 1800, to form an organized incorporated territory of the United States that existed from July 4, 1800, to December 11, 1816, when the remaining southern portion of the territory was admitted to the Union as the state of Indiana. The territory originally contained approximately 259,824 square miles (672,940 km2) of land, but its size was decreased when it was subdivided to create the Michigan Territory (1805) and the Illinois Territory (1809). The Indiana Territory was the first new territory created from lands of the Northwest Territory, which had been organized under the terms of the Northwest Ordinance of 1787. The territorial capital was the settlement around the old French fort of Vincennes on the Wabash River, until transferred in to Corydon near the Ohio River in 1813.

George Rogers Clark American general

George Rogers Clark was an American surveyor, soldier, and militia officer from Virginia who became the highest-ranking American patriot military officer on the northwestern frontier during the American Revolutionary War. He served as leader of the militia in Kentucky throughout much of the war. He is best known for his celebrated captures of Kaskaskia (1778) and Vincennes (1779) during the Illinois Campaign, which greatly weakened British influence in the Northwest Territory. The British ceded the entire Northwest Territory to the United States in the 1783 Treaty of Paris, and Clark has often been hailed as the "Conqueror of the Old Northwest".

Jesse B. Thomas American politician

Jesse Burgess Thomas was an American lawyer, judge and politician who served as a delegate from the Indiana Territory to the tenth Congress and later served as president of the Constitutional Convention which led to Illinois being admitted to the Union. He became one of Illinois' first two Senators, and is best known as the author of the Missouri Compromise of 1820, although after his retirement from the U.S. Senate in 1829 he lived the rest of his life in Ohio.

Thomas Hinde British doctor

Doctor Thomas Hinde was Northern Kentucky's first physician, a member of the British Royal Navy, an American Revolutionary, personal physician to Patrick Henry, and treated General Wolfe when he died in Quebec, Canada.

Grand Rapids Hotel

The Grand Rapids Hotel also known as The Grand Rapids Resort, was a hotel that existed outside of Mount Carmel, Illinois, in Wabash County, Illinois, United States in Southern Illinois from 1922 to 1929. The hotel was located on the Wabash River next to the Grand Rapids Dam on land that was originally purchased by Thomas S. Hinde. Before the hotel was built, the property where the hotel was located was a site of a former homestead, and was used by Frederick Hinde Zimmerman for multiple small shops that sold goods to fisherman and tourists.

Charles T. Hinde industrialist

Charles T. Hinde was an American industrialist, tycoon, riverboat captain, businessman, and entrepreneur. He managed many businesses and invested in numerous business ventures over the course of his life. Hinde served in executive leadership positions in the river navigation, shipping, railroad, and hotel businesses. By his late forties, Hinde had already amassed a great fortune from his work in the steamboat and railroad industries.

Frederick Hinde Zimmerman American businessman

Frederick Hinde Zimmerman was an American banker, farmer, real estate entrepreneur, businessman, and hotel owner. Due to his large land holdings and expertise in farming Zimmerman became a notable farmer, breeder, and real estate entrepreneur during his life. Zimmerman's farm, originally purchased by his grandfather Thomas S. Hinde from the federal government in 1815, included the Grand Rapids Dam, Hanging Rock, and Buttercrust. His first experience running a business was in 1883 when he ran a grocery store in Fort Smith, Arkansas with his cousin Harry Hinde. Many of Zimmerman's businesses centered on his family farm, but in later years Zimmerman achieved success through his ownership and investment in mines, banks, and real estate. He also owned or invested in the Hanging Rock and Grand Rapids Dam Farm Company, the Grand Rapids Hotel Park Company, and the Wabash Bull-Frog Mines Company.

Grand Rapids Dam dam in Wabash County, Illinois and Knox County, Indiana, USA

The Grand Rapids Dam was a dam located on the Wabash River on the state line between Wabash County and Knox County in the U.S. states of Illinois and Indiana. The dam was built in the late 1890s by the Army Corps of Engineers to improve navigation on the Wabash River. The dam was located near Mount Carmel, Illinois.

Edmund C. Hinde writer

Edmund C. Hinde was a gold miner and laborer. His life was, at times, extremely difficult and filled with various hardships due to his career as a gold prospector in the 1850s. Throughout most of his adult life Hinde kept detailed diaries on his daily activities. After his death, his son, Harry Hinde, donated the diaries to the California State Library. The diaries have provided a wealth of information on a variety of topics, in particular on the California Gold Rush.

Harry Hinde American politician

Harry H. Hinde was a Missouri State Representative, businessman, aircraft designer, patent holder, and inventor.

Glenn Goodart American businessman

Ira Glenn Goodart was an American railroad conductor, hotel manager, county commissioner and county treasurer. Goodart was raised in Friendsville, Illinois, a small community outside of Mount Carmel, Illinois, in a German Catholic family. After trying a variety of menial jobs Goodart took a position on the New York Central Railroad as a conductor. He held the position with the New York Central until he lost his right leg during a violent train crash in the early 1920s.

Jacob Zimmerman American politician

Jacob Zimmerman was an Illinois state legislator, newspaper editor, and businessman. Zimmerman was a pioneer in the newspaper business in Illinois and Ohio, and a businessman who invested in mining, land, and banks in the Midwest. Zimmerman held a number of elected political offices in Illinois before his death in 1912.

O. L. Rapson businessperson

Oscar Luscher Rapson was an American farmhand, hotel manager and store owner. Rapson is best known for being the first manager of the Grand Rapids Hotel, which was the first major resort on the Wabash River.

Charles H. Constable Illinois politician and judge

Charles H. Constable was an American attorney, Illinois State Senator, judge, and real estate entrepreneur. He was raised in Maryland and graduated from the University of Virginia with a degree in Law. After settling in Illinois, he married the oldest daughter of Thomas S. Hinde, a pioneer and real estate developer. Initially, he practiced law in Mount Carmel, Illinois, the town founded by Hinde. He managed the business and real estate affairs of his father-in-law until Hinde died in 1846.

William M'Intosh was a fur trader, treasurer of the Indiana Territory under William Henry Harrison, and real estate entrepreneur. He became famous for the United States Supreme Court case of Johnson v. M'Intosh (1823) and for his massive real estate holdings on the Wabash River.

Hanging Rock (Wabash River)

Hanging Rock is a natural sandstone rock formation overhanging the Wabash River in Wabash County, Illinois, in the United States. The rock formation is north of the town of Mount Carmel, Illinois, and located on land originally purchased by Thomas S. Hinde. The formation was formed while the glaciers melted and carved the landscapes of North America. The Native Americans were the first group of people to settle around Hanging Rock. Later the Hinde family purchased the property and used it for tourism and business.


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Methodist Episcopal Church. General Conference 1852 , pp. 458–459
  2. Drake 1829 , pp. 625–634
  3. Redford 1884 , p. 24
  4. 1 2 3 4
    • Hinde, Thomas S. "Hinde to James Madison, 27 Aug. 1829".
  5. Hartley 1902 , p. 309
  6. Williams 1882 , p. 35
  7. Coles 1857 , pp. 157–159
  8. Arminius 1827 , pp. 410
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  10. Arminius 1827 , pp. 411
  11. 1 2 Arminius 1827 , pp. 412
  12. 1 2
  13. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Boggess 1908 , pp. 196–203
  14. 1 2 3 Redford 1870 , p. 89
  15. Hay 1991 , pp. 234–235
  16. Boggess, pp. 196-203
  17. Ohio. General Assembly. Senate 1808 , p. 5
  18. Redford 1870 , pp. 86–87
  19. Pioneer Marriage Records, Hamilton County, Ohio: 1791–1820, Copied by John Day Caldwell, Secretary of the Cincinnati Pioneer Association, before the Cincinnati Courthouse fire in 1884
  20. Towne 2006 , pp. 53–62
  21. Hinde 1850–1909
  22. Smythe 1913 , pp. 18–22
  23. Risley 1911 , pp. 827–828
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  25. Wakeley 1856 , p. 39
  26. Redford 1870 , p. 87
  27. Hinde 1828
  28. Risley 1911 , pp. 675
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  30. Sugden 2000 , p. 311
  31. Haines 1892 , p. 39
  32. Greene 2007 , pp. 10–11
  33. 1 2 3 4 5 6 State Historical Society of Wisconsin. Library 1906 , pp. 31–33
  34. Harper 1983
  35. "1883 History of Edwards, Lawrence and Wabash Counties, Illinois"
  36. Hinde 1818
  37. Wood 1992 , pp. 143–160
  38. Hinde 1845
  39. Harvey 1918 , p. 22
  40. Leaton 1883 , pp. 157–164
  41. 1 2 3 Vattier v. Hinde, 32 U.S. 252 (1833).
  42. Mallow v. Hinde, 25 U.S. 193 (1827).
  43. 1 2 Robertson 2007 , pp. 51–55
  44. 1 2 United States House of Representatives 1869 , pp. 239–249
  45. Marshall 2002 , p. 62
  46. 1 2 Watson 2012
  47. Wade 1996 , pp. 122–124
  48. Thompson 1880 , p. 347
  49. Heiser 1955 , pp. 88–92
  50. Hinde et al. v. The Wabash Navigation Co., November term 1853
  51. Nolan 2011 , pp. 1–20
  52. United States Army Corps of Engineers 1891 , p. 2405
  53. United States War Department 1908 , pp. 618–619
  54. 1 2 Williams 1842 , pp. 327–329
  55. Dougherty 1998 , p. 117
  56. Unsigned 1915
Preceded by
Position Created
Clerk of the Ohio House of Representatives
Succeeded by