Mount Pleasant

THERE’S something new for an old town.

Mount Pleasant which has received all sorts of historic acclaim now has a seal/logo, effective this year.

It was proposed by Councilman Gary Reynard and approved by village officials.

The rolling hills of that area are among the features on the logo created by graphic artist Justin McCrea.

JUST think of the people who roamed those hills. There were plenty of runaway slaves who were hidden by village residents. The Underground Railroad certainly came to Mount Pleasant although it was bypassed by an actual railroad, which undoubtedly is one reason that the town didn’t grow larger.

Abigail Stanton, the grandmother of Edwin M. Stanton who was Secretary of War for President Abraham Lincoln, moved from North Carolina to a farm about a mile from the village.

At the time that she arrived in Jefferson County, it was necessary to fell trees before the area could be reached.

She was acting in accordance with her late husband’s will, which noted that he wanted “all the poor black people that ever belonged to me be entirely free whenever the laws of the land will allow it.” He entrusted Abigail to “protect them and see that they be not deprived of their rights or anyway misused.”

Her grandson once told of his grandmother’s efforts at a yearly meeting in Philadelphia. He also is featured in the new movie, “Lincoln,” and is known for uttering the words, “Now he belongs to the ages” after Lincoln died.

Benjamin Lundy, who organized the Union Humane Society in St. Clairsville, published a newspaper, Genius of Universal Emancipation, in Mount Pleasant. He also influenced another leading abolitionist, William Lloyd Garrison.

Also familiar with the hills in that area was Confederate Brig. Gen. John Hunt Morgan (called the “Thunderbolt of the Confederacy” and “The King of Horse Thieves,” depending on whether a person is from the North or the South). He is said to have dispatched riders to the village to abduct a physician to treat a wounded soldier.

THOSE are only some of the people linked to the village whose history has been admirably maintained by the Historic Society of Mount Pleasant.