Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Boiler Corner

The Daily Register, June 30, 1902

Editor Register:

The old boiler at the corner of Ohio and Front streets - where did it come from and for what purpose was it used? 

The following account, which the writer believes to be correct, was given by the late Ebenezer D. Buell, who was born in 1805, in the old red house which stood on bank of the Ohio river, opposite the head of Marietta island on the Ohio side, quite recently torn down. Mr. Buell spent the most of his life here.  

He says that a man by the name of Adams had a distillery on the bank of the Little Muskingum, where the road leading to Cornerville strikes the creek, for many years known as the Howe place, but at present the Scott farm. Mr. Buell says this boiler was used in that distillery, that he was often there when a boy, as it was not more than a half mile from his father's home.

It will be observed that there is a short pipe on one side, 6 inches in diameter, perhaps, without any arrangement for a connection or for closing other than a wooden plug which Mr. Adams made use of to confine the steam; in so doing he had made the discovery that steam had considerable power when confined, and on one occasion called in his wife to witness the operation while he worked the plug. Having much more pressure on than he was aware of, the plug blew out with considerable force, slightly scalding him. 

Mr. Buell, in speaking of this old boiler, always claimed that it came from the Adams distillery. We have no means of telling just when this distillery ceased to do business. The writer remembers going to school in a house which was very near where the distillery stood and remembers that it was all gone but two or three rounds of the bottom logs. This was as early as 1827 or '28. The only other history I ever had of the old boiler was from the late G. M. Woodbridge, who claimed that it was shipped to his father in transit to some other point and that his father had paid some freight charges which he never collected, as the boiler never got any farther.

William Harris  


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