[ P ] - Pig's Eye's Notepad - [ P ]

PALMER, MATILDA - Born in 1831 in New York. Living in the household of Stephen Palmer in 1850 and believed to be his sister. [MN50]


PALMER, STEPHEN - Born in 1827 in New York. A tavern keeper in St. Paul in 1850. His real estate holdings were valued at $500 in 1850. He and his wife Mary (1834 IL) had at least one child: Leander (Mar 1850 IA). [MN50]
PANE, LEWIS E. - Born in 1827 in Canada. A merchant in St. Paul in 1850. His real estate holdings were valued at $1,000 in 1850. [MN50]
PARENTS, GABRIEL - Born in 1808 in Canada. A laborer in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PARKER, LUCIUS - He was married 10 Sep 1849 at St. Paul to Miss Amanda M. Hughes. (Hughes was spelled Hewes in the article and has been crossed out, and the name Hughes written in). [MPv1#22]
PARKER, RODNEY - Born in 1805 in New Hampshire. The owner and operator of the Rice House (American House), a St. Paul hotel built in 1849. He came to St. Paul from Charlestown, MA. He and his wife Elisabeth C. (1814 NH) had at least one child: George Henry (1840 NH). Also living in his residence in 1850 was Abigail (1824 NH). [WM224, MN50]
PARRANT, PIERRE - The first person of European descent to live within what is now the city limits of St. Paul, and the owner of the first business in St. Paul. Born in about 1777 in Sault Ste. Marie, MI, Pierre was the descendant of a relatively long line of French-Canadian fur trappers. He apparently followed in the footsteps of his father and three uncles, and spent most of his life in the employ of Chouteau & MacKenzie in St. Louis and later in Prairie du Chien, WI.

When he appeared in St. Paul, he he was in his early 60's, and had turned from fur trapping to moonshining. Known as "Pig's Eye", he was, according to contemporary description, a coarse, ill-looking, low-browed fellow, with only one serviceable eye. The other was blind, sinister-looking, marble-hued, crooked, with a white ring glaring around the pupil. He spoke execrable English, and his habits were "intemperate and licentious".

He set up his still among the squatters in the shadow of Fort Snelling in about 1832, and from there was furnishing whiskey to the Native Americans living nearby, as well as supplying the soldiers at the Fort! Finally in 1835, the Indian Agent, Major Lawrence Taliaferro, ordered him out of the area, along with many of the squatters living near the Fort.

Moving to a point just north of the jurisdiction of the Fort, a place known as Fountain Cave, he again set up his business, much to the consternation of Major Taliaferro. Soon he was joined by others, mostly from the disbanded squatter camp. Parrant, operating a thriving business, ultimately borrowed money from William Beaumette, mortgaging his claim in the process. That mortgage paper, after changing hands a number of times, ultimately led to Parrant's eviction, and his move to what is now downtown St. Paul.

Parrant immediately set up his saloon in a tiny shack located near Lambert's Landing, and his business was sufficiently popular that rivermen and settlers began to refer to the area as "Pig's Eye".

In 1840, Parrant sold his land to Benjamin Gervais, and moved his residence and business to the lower levee. He remained there until 1843, when he was bought out by Louis Robert. He attempted to establish a claim on land at the Grand Marais, but lost his claim in a property dispute to neighbor, Michel LeClaire.

Angered by the loss of his claim, Parrant set out for Lake Superior with the aim of returning to his native Sault Ste Marie, however he apparently died en route, probably in 1844. [WM64ff]


PARSONS, JOHN P. - Born in 1803 in New York. A Baptist minister who took up residence in St. Paul in 1849. He was elected a school trustee in St. Paul District #1 in 1850. He died on November 13, 1851, while on his way up the river on a steamer returning from a fundraising trip back East. He had not yet completed the construction of his Church. His real estate holdings were valued at $500 in 1850. He and his wife Matilda B. (1816 NY) had at least one child: Chloe L. (1842 IL)WM230, 278, 318, MN50]
PATCH, EDWARD - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269]
PATCH, HARRIET - She was a member of the St. Paul Circle of Industry in 1848. [WM178]
PATNODE, DAVID - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269]
PATRICK, GILL - Born in 1820 in New York. A carpenter in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PATRIDGE, E. M. - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269]
PATWELL, FRANCOIS - Born in 1827 in Canada. A laborer in St. Paul in 1850. He and his wife Annice (1830 WI) had at least two children: Constance (1847 WI), and Edward (1849 WI). Also living in their residence in 1850 was Mary (1840 WI). [MN49, MN50]
PATWELL [PATOILLE], PETER - Born in 1816 in Canada. A laborer in St. Paul in 1850. He and his wife Josetta (1818 Canada) had at least six children: Frederic (1837 Canada), Peter (1841 NY), Napoleon (1843 Canada), Adele (1846 NY), Josephine (1847 Canada), and Emelie (1849 MN). [MN49, MN50]
PAUL, LOUIS - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269]
PEIRA, EDWARD - Born in 1825 in Canada. He was a laborer in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PELON, "OLD" - A retired voyageur from Prairie du Chien who arrived in St. Paul in 1842. His arrival was opportune for Henry Jackson, who, at the time, was looking for someone to hire as an interpreter who could speak the Sioux language, and enhance his business among the Native American community. Pelon was quite a character...vivacious, polite, good natured, shrewd, and faithful, and he proved to be a valuable employee, remaining in Jackson's service for several years, often tending Jackson's bar. He afterwards kept a saloon of his own on the lower levee until age and infirmities overtook him, and he died in 1852 at the home of his friend, Louis Larrivier. [WM121]
PELLOND, JOSEPH - Born in 1835 in Canada. A clerk in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PELTIER, CHARLES - Born in 1818 in Canada. A laborer in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PELTIER, MICHAEL - Born in 1832 in Canada. A laborer in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PELTIER, OLIVIER - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. He later moved to Centerville and Little Canada, MN [WM269, LR2424]
PELTIER, PETER - Born in 1827 in Canada. A St. Paul resident in 1850. [MN50]
PEPIN, ANTOINE FRANCOIS - Born in Canada about 1786, Pepin lived at the Red River Settlement for several years, and came to Fort Snelling about 1831 when he was appointed by Major Taliaferro as blacksmith to the Sioux on the Reserve. He was said to have been a faithful worker, honest, and skilled at his craft. As the Sioux could not afford to buy traps, Pepin fashioned many of them from spare parts and scrap. In 1836, Taliaferro found it necessary to replace him with Oliver Cratte in order to take advantage of Cratte's gunsmithing skills, a trade that Pepin did not understand. Pepin then settled near the Fort, then in Mendota, and finally settled in St. Paul where he lived for some 12 years until his death in 1850.

Pepin was married to Marie Marguerite Hamelin (1806 MN) and they had a large family including: Etienne (1831 MN) a laborer, Joseph (1834 MN) a laborer, Olivier (1836 MN), Pierre (1838 MN) a laborer, Angelique (1842 MN), Elyma (1846 MN), Marguerite Marie (1840 MN), Elisabeth (1844 MN), Helima (1846 MN), and Agathe (Aug 1850 MN). Many of his children settled in Little Canada, MN, and nearby.[WM137, LR2432-3, MN50]


PERRON, CALIXTE - The first husband of Theotiste Cournoyer of Mendota Heights. [Francis J. Lavacot, franklav@usit.net]
PERRY, ABRAHAM - A refugee from the Selkirk Colony, he had been born in Switzerland about 1780, and had been a watchmaker. With his wife, three of his children, and a considerable number of his countrymen, he had emigrated to the Red River Colony in 1820. He arrived at Fort Snelling in 1827, settling north of the Fort at Camp Coldwater, opened a farm, and prospered. It was said that Perry owned more cattle than all the rest of the families combined, except for Joseph Renville.

The forced move to the Fountain Cave site was a cruel blow to Perry, who was no longer young. And within a few months of having reestablished a farm on his new claim, the survey of the military reservation had been completed, and to the dismay of the Fountain Cave settlers, Major Joseph Plympton had extended the territory of the Fort to a point nearly to the upper levee, what is now Seven Corners in St. Paul, and they were again rousted from their homes. This time, the Perry's moved to the site of Lambert's Landing, where Pierre Parrant, their former neighbor, was already established in business.

Almost completely broken by his ill-fortune and the loss of his herds, they moved in with their son-in-law, James Clewett. Soon Perry's health took a turn for the worse, and he died in 1849. His wife, Mary Ann, died in 1859 at the residence of another son-in-law, Charles Bazille. In all, they had seven children: Charles, Sophia, Fanny, Rose Ann, Adele, Josephine (1830 MN), and Annie Jane. Together, they provided over 75 grandchildren. [KZ6, WM101, MN50]


PERRY, ADELE - Daughter of Abraham Perry, and wife of Vital Guerin. Lived at St. Paul. [WM101]
PERRY, ANNIE JANE - Daughter of Abraham Perry, and wife of Charles Bazille. Lived at St. Paul. [WM101]
PERRY, CHARLES - Son of Abraham Perry, and born in 1816 in Switzerland. Moved to Lake Johanna, in northern Ramsey County, now a part of St. Paul, where he was engaged in farming. He married twice, first in 1841 at Mendota to Emilie Bruce (1841, Mendota), and secondly in 1849 at St. Paul to Aurelie Morissette (1823 MN). He and Aurelia had at least one child: Marianne (1845 MN). His real estate holdings were valued at $500 in 1850. He died in Ramsey County in 1904. [WM101, LR2455, MN50]
PERRY, FANNY - Daughter of Abraham Perry, and wife of Charles Mousseau. Moved to Minneapolis. [WM101]
PERRY, JOSEPHINE - Daughter of Abraham Perry, and wife of J. B. Cornoyer. Moved to Minneapolis. [WM101]
PERRY, ROSE ANN - Daughter of Abraham Perry, and wife of J. R. Clewett. Their marriage, in April of 1839, was the first Christian marriage within St. Paul. They lived for a while near Lamberts Landing, [WM101] then moved to White Bear, MN.
PERRY, SOPHIA - Daughter of Abraham Perry, and wife of Pierre Crevier. Moved to Watertown, MN. [WM101]
PETER, MICHAEL - A resident in St. Paul in 1849. Living in his household are listed 3 males and 2 females. [MN49]
PETTIGREN, WILLIAM - Born in 1822 in Ireland. A merchant in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PETTIJOHN, ISAAC - Born in 1814 in Ohio. A farmer in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PHELAN, EDWARD - Phelan was born in Londonderry, Ireland in 1811, and worked as a laborer until he enlisted in the US Army at the age of 24. He was 6'2½" tall, with a fair complexion and a marvelous physique. He was, however, reported to be of a less than a marvelous disposition. He was supposed to have led a lawless and criminal life before his enlistment. He and William Evans were discharged from Fort Snelling at the same time in 1838, and John Hays was expecting his discharge two months later.

Hays wanted to settle near his comrades, so he made an arrangement with Phelan wherein Phelan would make a claim for him, and build a cabin for the two men to share, with Hays furnishing the money to Phelan for these purchases. Phelan did make the claim, but his attempts at a cabin were less than elegant and remained unfinished when Hays joined him the following Spring. Neighbors reported that the two men were not very compatable and fought constantly that Summer.

About the middle of September, 1839, Hays mysteriously disappeared. He was missed for several days, and Phelan gave evasive answers to questions by neighbors. When word of the disappearence reached Fort Snelling, where Hays was very popular, Major Taliaferro, the Indian Agent, inquired of his contacts among the Native American community if they had seen Hays. On September 27th, Wabsheedah called at the Fort to report that his sons had found the body of Hays in the river at Carver's Cave. Phelan was arrested for the murder, tried, and served six months in the territorial prison at Prairie du Chien, when a dying Indian confessed to the crime, and Phelan was released.

Returning to his St. Paul claim, which he still insisted he owned, he threatened Vital Guerin, who had taken over the land, saying that he would physically remove him if he did not leave of his own accord. Guerin, a small man, called on a number of his voyageur friends to protect him, and Phelan was warned to leave Guerin alone, or they would come after him. Phalen took the matter to Justice of the Peace Joseph Brown who ruled that his absence for the six months he was serving in prison invalidated his claim. Realizing that he was going to get to further in the matter, Phelan let it drop.

Phelan took up a claim at the falls of Phelan's Creek, selling it in 1844, and making another claim on what was then known as "Prospect Hill", the ridge on the upper side of Phelan's Creek just north of where the West Wisconsin Railway used to cross it. This is the area known as Arlington Heights today. Selling that, he made yet another claim to the east of the others, probably as far as Trout Brook, where he lived until 1849. In the Spring of 1850, he again ran afoul of the law, and was indicted for perjury by the first Grand Jury to ever sit in Ramsey County. When the Sheriff went to arrest him, it was found that he had fled to California with Eben Weld and others. Shortly thereafter, it was reported that he had behaved so violently toward his traveling companions that they had been forced to kill him in self defense. [WM71-3, 90-1, 145-6]


PHELAN'S CREEK - A creek fed by a waterfall that flowed into the Mississippi to the north of Lambert's Landing, and the site of much early development in St. Paul. The outlet and small delta at its mouth is thought to be the place at which Fr. Louis Hennepin landed on his journey to discover the falls of St. Anthony in 1680. It was also known as "McLeod's Creek". [KZ2, 11]
PHILLIPS, JAMES - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269]
PHILLIPS, WILLIAM D. - "Billy", as he was generally known, was one of the oddest personalities in early St. Paul. He was born in 1823 in Maryland, and came to St. Paul in 1848 to practice as an attorney. He was not a particularly accomplished lawyer, but had a great weakness for oratory, and was likely to speak on any topic at any time in any place. In 1852, he had embarked on a long-winded, half-drunken rhapsody on Kossuth, which never got beyond the introduction when the meeting broke up. James Goodhue, as a joke, printed about half a column of the balderdash, then added "...the balance of the lecture is all as good as the above!".

Stories about Billy abound. After Henry Rice gave Billy several lots (without consideration), and told him to make out the deed, which Rice would sign, which he did. Billy later sued Rice for the $5 fee for making out the deed! Billy also claimed to be a personal friend of Louis Cass, who he expected to be nominated for President. When Pierce was nominated, his hopes for a major public office from "his friend, Cass" were dashed, yet he went to Washington anyway and became a clerk in the General Land Office. A year or two later, he was prosecuted for forging the franks of Senator Douglas, and selling them to a patent medicine vendor to mail circulars. He was acquitted of the charge, but then disappeared from public view. About 1858, he was seen by an old settler who reported that he looked "very much decayed". His real estate holdings were valued at $500 in 1850.[WM191-2]


PICARD, PETER - Born in 1821 in Canada. He was a carpenter in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PIERCE, ALLEN - Born in 1809 in South Carolina. A lawyer in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PIG'S EYE - The name by which St Paul was originally known, and the nickname of Pierre Parrant, first settler and notorious whiskey merchant of the city. By the late 1840's, this was also the name by which Grand Marais was often known. This usage has carried down to the present day, as that area is the site of the Twin Cities largest sewage treatment plant, known as the Pig's Eye Plant. Also in the 1990's, the name has become relatively famous as a popular brand of beer brewed by St. Paul's Minnesota Brewing Company.
PLYMPTON, JOSEPH - Major, US Army, and Commandant at Fort Snelling during the period when the Red River refugees were expelled from the squatters' camp in the shadow of the Fort. Initiation of this move was strongly encouraged by Major Taliaferro, the resident Indian Agent, who saw the move as necessary to protect the Native American community from unnecessary contact with undesirable elements in the white community. [WM60,78,95]
POINTE LECLAIRE - See GRAND MARAIS.
POMEROY, JESSE H. - He arrived in St. Paul about 1845, and was mentioned as having erected the Harriet Bishop's school house in 1848. He was still in St. Paul in 1850. [WM178, 199]
POST, COLUMBUS J. - Born in 1825 in Michigan. A laborer in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269, MN50]
POTTER, CALVIN - A resident in St. Paul in 1850. [WM269]
POTTS, THOMAS R. - Born in Philadelphia in 1810, Dr. Potts graduated from the Medical Department of the University of Pennsylvania in 1831, and settled at Natchez, MS, where he lived for 10 years. In 1841, he removed to Galena, IL, and in 1849, to St. Paul where he practiced medicine for 26 years. He was, part of this time, contract surgeon to Fort Snelling, physician to the Sioux, Medical Purveyor of this district, and Pension Sugeon. He was married in 1847 at Fort Snelling to Abby Anne Steeleand they had at least 2 children: Mary Steele (1848 IL), and Henry Sibley (Aug 1850 MN)..

He was elected as President of the Town Board in 1850 (the equivalent of Mayor). He was also elected City Physician in 1866, and St. Paul Health Officer in 1873. He died while hold that position on 6 Oct 1874. [WM260-1, MN50]


POTVIN, JOSEPH - Born in 1804 in Canada. A farmer in St. Paul in 1850. He and his wife Genevieve (1808 Canada) had at least seven children: Joseph (1827 Canada) a laborer, Francois (1829 Canada) a laborer, Baptiste (1832 Canada) a laborer, Pascal (1836 Canada), Aurelia (1840 Canada), Julia A. (1842 Canada), and Israel (1846 Canada). [MN50, LR2530]
POWERS, SIMON - Born in 1819 in New York. In the Spring of 1850, Powers came to St. Paul with his partner, Amherst Willoughby, a nice span of horses, and a two-seated open wagon, and not much else. They commenced to run the wagon twice daily between St. Anthony and St. Paul. By September, their business had increased enough that they purchased a four-horse open spring wagon that could carry 14 passengers, and ran the route until winter set in. They then ran a longer distance line for four winters between St. Paul and Prairie du Chien, connecting Stillwater, Hudson, Menominee, Black River Falls, Sparta, and many other communities. In 1851, they brought the first Concord Coach to St. Paul.

In 1851, another stage line, the "Yellow Line", went into furious competition with Willoughby & Powers, known as the "Red Line", resulting in a very furious "price war" that nearly bankrupted both companies, although they continued to grow with the need for transportation. In 1854, the two competing companies reached a compromise, with the Yellow Line taking the St. Paul to St. Anthony run, and the Red Line concentrating on the St. Paul to Stillwater run. The next year, Willoughby and Powers split their assets, with Willoughby retaining the livery part, and Powers the stage line. His real estate holdings were valued at $300 in 1850. He was married to Frances (1831 NY). Powers died in 1868. [WM295-7, 434, MN49, MN50]


PRATT, M. [N.] - A resident in St. Paul in 1849. Living in his household are listed 3 males and 5 females. [MN49]
PRATTE, THARSILE - Born in 1804 in Canada. A resident of St. Paul in 1850. Also living in her household in 1850 was Mary (1832 Canada). [MN50]
PRENTISS, A. C. - Born in 1800 in Connecticut. A carpenter & joiner in St. Paul in 1850. [MN50]
PRESLEY, BARTLETT - Born in 1822 in Germany. A St. Paul merchant in 1850, owner of Bartlett Presley & Company. His real estate holdings were valued at $500 in 1850. He was married to Mary E. (1824 MO). [WM246, MN50]
PRESLEY, MARY JOSEPHINE - A sister of Bartlett Presley. She was born in Germany in 1830, and lived in St. Louis, MO, in her youth. In1845, she married Auguste Larpenteur, St. Paul merchant. [WM133-4]
PRESLEY, THERESA J. -Born 1830 in Missouri. A resident in St. Paul in 1849-50. She was married on Sunday 17 June 1849, to Benjamin F. Irvine. Apparently this marriage did not last as Benjamin ran a notice in the newspaper of 17 Jan 1850 forbidding all persons from harboring or trusting her on his account. They were still living apart in Sep 1850. [WM268, MPv1#9, MPv1#40, MN50]
PRICE, ESTHER - Born in 1815 in Virginia. A St. Paul resident in 1850. [MN50]
PROVOST, B. - A resident in St. Paul in 1849. Living in his household are listed 4 males and 5 females. [MN49]
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