~ April 9, 1877 • Black Hills Daily Times ~
Territory of Lincoln.
Meeting Saturday Evening at Bella Union Hall.
A large and enthusiastic audience, composed principally of miners, was presided over by the talent and wisdom of the representative people of the West.
At 7:30 p. m., Judge Kirkendall was called to the chair. Mr. J. H. Burns was appointed Secretary.
The Vice-Presidents appointed were: X. S. Burke, of Crook City; Edward McKay, of Gayville; Mr. Wood, of Bear Butte; W. H. Horton, of Custer City; Judge Beck, of Spearfish; Thos. Corey, of Lead City; Milton Pinney, Esq., of Golden Gate; and Mr. Sutherland and Dr. Porter, of Deadwood.
Judge Miller, Maj. Galligher, Sol. Star, Dr. Babcock and Capt. Gardner were appointed a committee to draft a series of resolutions respective of the sense of the meeting.
E. C. Brearly was next called to the front, and said: “Fellow-citizens—I suppose in calling upon me to address you, it is to publicly demonstrate how my sympathies and anxieties are interwoven with yours. We as a people are situated here like a golden oasis in a vast desert. Perhaps being thus remote from the capitol of civilization is a sufficient reason that the voices of so many thousands of citizens who inhabit these valleys and hills as miners and agriculturers, has been spurned and their rights and privileges neglected or disregarded. Our street and highways are given up to the banditti and the assassin—and the murderer plies his bloody work without fear of molestation. The people who are flocking daily to this country to realize their dreams of golden wealth, need laws, need security.” Mr. Brearly concluded by urging the people to unite and place their grievances before a higher power than the Governor of Dakota; to appeal to Congress, etc.
J. M. Murphy, of Gayville; Mr. J. H. Burns, of Deadwood; Judge McCutchen, Judge Miller and Major Galligher each addressed the meeting in tones of eloquence, and with a force of logic that carried conviction. The mirth of the different speakers at times brought down the house in peals of laughter and boisterous applause.
The committee on resolutions then reported the following, which were unanimously adopted:
WHEREAS, The country known as the Black Hills occupies an isolated position, and is separated from the capitols of the Territories of Dakota and Wyoming by hundreds of miles of wild and unsettled country, subject at any time to Indian depredations, thereby rendering travel to and from said capitols extremely dangerous, tedious and expensive.
WHEREAS, The said Black Hills abound in rich and extensive mines of precious metals, both placer and rock in place, together with extensive and inexhaustible forests of pine, with rich and fertile valleys, eminently adapted to agricultural and grazing purposes.
WHEREAS, The said section of country is now settled by a large, energetic, enterprising and rapidly increasing population, that now number over 20,000 people, and whose hardy energy, industry and enterprise are rapidly developing the rich resources of the country, which will soon enable it to occupy a position of wealth and importance second to no mining district in the United States.
WHEREAS, The Territory of Dakota has heretofore been settled and occupied by agricultural people, and the laws passed by the different legislative bodies were only adapted to, and intended for such a community, and are entirely inefficient and inappropriate to protect the rights and enforce the remedies necessary to secure the rights of person and property in a mining community, and that said legislative bodies haven’t rely neglected to pass any appropriate laws adapted to the peculiar wants of a mining community.
WHEREAS, The people of the United States are blessed with a Republican form of government, the theory of which is that all persons and all interests shall be fully represented in the legislative bodies and law-making powers of the government, and taxation without such representation is tyranny, contrary to the spirit of our institutions.
WHEREAS, The Legislature of the Territory of Dakota having entirely failed to provide for the proper representation of the citizens of the Black Hills and vicinity, in their legislative assembly, to be held in Yankton on the 9th day of January, A. D. 1879, or in any other legislative assembly of said Territory; and
WHEREAS, In a few months our population will be augmented to over 50,000 souls, and that for this large population to be held subservient to the interests antagonistic to our own, would be an outrage that we do not believe Congress, in its wisdom, would knowingly permit; therefore, be it resolved, that the only remedy left us is the organization of a new and independent Territory.
Resolved, That we urge upon all citizens of the Black Hills the necessity of immediate action in the premises, and for the purpose of having united action do recommend that a convention be held in the city of Deadwood on the 21st of April, A. D. 1877, at 10 o’clock a. m., composed of delegates to be chosen and sent from the different settlements in the Black Hills, that harmonious action may be had for the purpose of devi-ing ways and means, and take the proper steps to urge upon Congress, at the next special session thereof, a bill providing for the organization of a new Territory, having within its boundaries the country known as the Black Hills.
Mr. Young moved that a committee be appointed to invite delegates from every town and district of the Hills, to assemble in Deadwood in convention April 21st, 1877, to transact business pertaining to the organization of a Territory of Black Hills.
Mr. T. H. Burns moved an amendment, that a committee of ten be appointed by the chairman to act ex-officio an executive committee: carried.
It was then moved and carried unanimously that a full report of the proceedings of the meeting be published in THE BLACK HILLS DAILY TIMES.
The meeting then adjourned.
~ July 1, 1877 • Black Hills Weekly Times ~
Arsene Pilon was killed last night about 1 a. m., on a claim 19 below discovery, Deadwood Gulch. The shaft is about twenty-seven feet deep, and Mr. Pilon was below changing the buckets. The ropes on the shaft are so arranged that while the full bucket is rising the empty one is being lowered. It was Mr. Pilon’s duty to be at the bottom of the shaft and uncouple the buckets. The orders are to the men in that position, to keep in the cut until the cart is drawn over the mouth of the shaft, as pieces of rock are liable to fall from the ascending bucket. When the bucket which was loaded with wet heavy gravel, was twenty-four feet above, Pilon stepped out of the tunnel to unfasten the empty bucket and shove it into the cut, and while he was in the act of uncoupling the empty bucket, the ropes holding the loaded one broke, the full bucket falling, struck him on the back of the head, as he was stooping over, killing him instantly. Mr. Pilon is a Canadian Frenchman, and has been working on this shaft, owned by Wisner & Ayres, since the first of this month. There are four men below the shaft and four above making eight on day and eight on night shift. One of the men who was moving the buckets at the top saw the rope untwisting and immediately cried out to the man below, but before the sound of his voice reached him the bucket had done its work. Mr. Pilon is a young man of about twenty-seven years of age. His companions report him a steady, industrious man. The Coroner held an inquest at 9 a. m., and gave all the cause of his death the facts as above stated. His funeral will take place today from his cabin.