Lewis University Adele Fay Williams Collection of Drawings and Prints (Lewis University)
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Log Cabin
Log Cabin
TitleLog Cabin
CreatorWilliams, Adele Fay
Date of the DrawingFebruary 27, 1927
DescriptionDrawing of a Log Cabin. The Log Cabin was believed to be built in 1837. The drawing illustrates the cabin, which was located on the McGlashan farm property. This drawing is a part of the Robert E. Sterling Collection.
Title of ArticleLog cabin of pioneer days still standing : picturesque home built near Frankfort in 1837 now pigpen.
Transcript of the ArticleLOG CABIN OF
Picturesque Home Built
Near Frankfort in 1837
Now Pigpen.
"This modest but picturesque little log cabin is one of the few concrete links between pioneer times and the present period.
Altho the cabin was built at the very least 91 years ago, the records go no farther back. It was built in 1837 by Robert Kinzie, a descendent of that John Kinzie, who came to Fort Dearborn in 1804, the year that fort was built on what is now the McGlashan farm, near Frankfort.
John Kinzie remained at the fort as a trader with the Indians until the time of the Blackhawk war in 1832, one year before the Chicago settlement was incorporated as a town.
Slain by Indians.
It was Mrs. Kinzie, wife of John, who wrote of her early experiences on the frontier in a book called ‘Waubun, ' now very rare. She tells of a visit at the home of the Pierce Hawley family on a journey from Fort Winnebago to Chicago in 1831.
A brother of Pierce Hawley was killed by Indians after cruel torture in 1832, near the same place. So far as known, Hawley and a Dunkard preacher were the only persons killed within the boundaries of Will county during the Sac war, altho there were recorded many badly scared individuals.
Mrs. Kinzie, in her ‘Waubun, ' also gave an account of a ball on Hickory creek in 1831. Altho Mrs. Kinzie did not mention the name of the owner of the house in which the all was held, George H. Woodruff later stated that it was held at the home of a Mr. Friend.
Might Be Same Cabin.
But so far as any modern authority can discover, it may have been held in this very cabin which stands on a hill looking down upon the creek scarcely a stone's throw away. And as the owners hold the firm belief that the cabin was built several years before Robert Kinzie acquired the property, it might be true. But there is a conflict of authorities.
According to John E. Morrison, who can settle all sorts of difficult problems by referring to those mysterious tomes called ‘abstracts, ' this very region of woods and hills, where the ‘Hickory Crick' made its sudden sallies, was reserved by the government thru the treaty of Tippecanoe in 1833, for the especial use of Theresa, wife of Jose Laframbois, Indian, and children.

Sold to Speculators.
And it was in 1834, the very next year, that Laframbois, Indian, promptly sold the entire property to Gurden S. Hubbard and Richard J. Hamilton, two well known landed proprietors and speculators of the time. These two energetic business men re-sold the property to Robert Kinzie.
This does not prove that the log cabin was not built before 1831, since Mrs. Kinzie, in ‘Waubun, ' speaks clearly of the home on Hickory creek. There seems to be not positive evidence against the theory that the cabin is thus close to a hundred years old. There is only the presumption that Robert Kinzie built it after he acquired it in 1837.
Has Withstood Years.
Yet he may have bought it just because he became acquainted with the beautiful locality thru his mother's visit in 1831, who knows?
At any rate, altho the heavy timbers and logs have stood up sturdily all these years, it was only last summer that some of the supports began to give way thru disintegration.
Mr. Kinzie owned the place until 1844, when he sold it to James Boerman, Alexander McGlashan bought it in 1837, holding it for 22 years, when he lost it thru foreclosure to George McConnell. It was bought in 1888 by Simon Hohenstein, stock raiser of Mokena, who sold it in 1899 to Joseph R. McGlashan, a capitalist, now of Chicago, whose property it remains. Thomas McGlashan, retired farmer, a brother of Joseph, lives in Joliet on Glenwood avenue.
Arrow Heads Found
Strangely enough, this family has no known relationship to Alexander, the previous holder of the property. But they traced their origin to the same region in Scotland, and were neighbors and friends in this country with many a bond of fellowship between them.
Thomas McGlashan says that the hills were thick with arrowheads when he picked them up, a boy during his brother's tenure. He can remember that log cabin clearly from the time he first saw it when he was three years old, and it seemed an old cabin then, he said.
Mr. McGlashan does not believe that Kinzie built the cabin, altho he lived in it until he built the fine new mansion standing not far away.
Used as Stable.
In the time of Alex McGlashan, he says the cabin was used as a stable for horses, the animals occupying the living room and kitchen below, while the hay was stored in the second floor bed rooms.
But now, alas, a worse fate has befallen it and it has become a palace for porkers, some very husky pigs and piglets run in and out of its classic doors.
The Joliet Historical society has discovered its existence and hopes to make arrangements to bring it piece by piece, timber by timber, to perhaps Pilcher park, or maybe West park, where, after being restored and refreshed, it may pass its days pleasantly surrounded by the sympathy and admiration of the Joliet public as a reminder of the earliest history of Will county. The entire region is historic.
On Old Sauk Trail.
The old Sac trail, or the ‘Great Sauk Trail' as it was often called, went in almost a direct line from the old ford on the Desplaines river, once called Aux Plaines or Oplain, directly thru the village of Frankfort.
It was the great highway for all who came with teams from the east, and altho it was at first but a narrow well worn foot path, the trail soon became a well beaten road, excellent traveling in dry weather.
Frankfort township is divided almost in two by beautiful Hickory creek, which is here peculiarly graceful in its meanderings beside steep hills and thru the gentle valleys of the region."
SubjectWilliams, Adele Fay
Joliet (Ill.) -- History
Physical Description26.5 cm. x 34 cm.
SourceClick this link for more historical information on the Joliet area - http://lewisu.edu/imcanal
Publisher (Digital)Lewis University
RightsAll rights held by Lewis University. For permission to reproduce, distribute, or otherwise use this image, please contact the Howard and Lois Adelmann Regional History Collection at Lewis University at 815-836-5665.
CollectionAdele Fay Williams Collection of Drawings and Prints (Lewis University)
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