tlement and were wholly reckless of the laws either of God or man." Nay more, they were "non-consumers of the country, performing no duties either civil or military." In short, gentlemen who had never even visited the Iowa frontier talked glibly about frontier lawlessness, anarchy, and crime.
Such wholesale defamation when applied to the early settlers of Iowa ought not to be dismissed with a shrug. The men who made these harsh charges were doubtless honest and sincere. But were they mistaken? All testimony based upon direct personal observation is overwhelmingly against the opinions they expressed.
Lieutenant Albert Lea who had spent several years in the Iowa District writes in 1836 that "the character of this population is such as is rarely to be found in our newly acquired territories. With very few exceptions there is not a more orderly, industrious, active, painstaking population, west of the Alleghanies, than is this of the Iowa District. Those who have used the name 'squatters' with the i
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