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Basye, Lismond


Came from Franklin County, Indiana, to this place late in the year 1821; and, like nearly all that came from that section at that time, he had a great thirst for office, and was willing to serve the people in any capacity they might wish.  Like General Hanna, he only desired to be useful, and was a candidate for, and elected, magistrate.

While Mr. B. was a candidate, Mr. Nathaniel Cox wishing to vote understandingly, and for those he considered qualified, in order to satisfy himself on this point, propounded this question for the (would-be) esquire to answer:  Said Cox, "Should you be elected, Mr. Basye, and a person was brought before you charged with burglary, and proved guilty beyond the shadow of a doubt, what would you do with him?"  Basye studied a few moments, raised his spectacles, looked wise (as he was), and said:  "I would fine him one hundred dollars and compel him to marry the woman."  This answer was satisfactory to Mr. Cox, as he generally gave 'Squire Basye what business he had in after years.  The 'Squire almost invariably decided in favor of the plaintiff, which had a tendency to secure him nearly the entire business of the village; and when defendants in former cases became plaintiffs in others, they always patronized 'Squire Basye, for two reasons:  first, they were sure of success; and second, they would know the exact amount of judgment before the trial, which was considered in those days an advantage to a person bringing a suit.  There were a great many amusing rials had before 'Squire Basye, that are yet fresh in my mind; but as the mention of them might not be agreeable to some of the parties yet living, I refrain from publishing them.

While the late Calvin Fletcher was prosecuting attorney, a person was arrested and taken before Mr. Bsye, charged with stealing, and proved guilty. 


Nowland, John H. B., “Early Reminiscences of Indianapolis, with Short Biographical Sketches of Its Early Citizens, and of a Few of the Prominent Business Men of the Present Day,” 1870, pp. 74-76.
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