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Caledonia was first an earthen fort with a blockhouse and was simply called "Blockhouse." The fort was circular with two entrances. They were on opposite sides of the earthworks. The date of its origin is not know. It was named Caledonia in 1817.
The village of Caledonia was laid out in 1826 for Captain James Riddle and John Skiles, on the bank of the Ohio River, in the northeast corner of section 3, township 16, range 1 east. John Worthington built the first store there. Stores were also ran by William Hughes, Colonel Henry Webb and Hugh and Isaac Worthington. The town grew rapidly and lots sold for a good price. Caledonia was a thriving river town. Caledonia Post Office was established January 16, 1835.
When the State Legislature divided Alexander County and crreated Pulasky County in 1843, Caledonia was made the county seat. Colonel Justis Post and his wife Eliza donated land on which to eract county buildings. The courthouse was built with money borrowed by the county board and taxes were levied to build a jail.
The first circuit court was held in May 1844. Walter B. Scott was prresiding judge. The first lawsuit was Davidson versus Jones and Davis. The first county judge was Richard C. Hall The State Legislature aurthorized the seat of justice to be moved to Mound City, February 13, 1861. Caledonia declined almost overnight. It was vacated, with America before the end of that year.
Colonel Justis Post laid out New Caledonia in section 26 and the south half of section 23, township 15, range 1 east, July 7 1843. It became a thriving town until the Cairo and Vincennes Railroad missed it by half and a mile and set up Olmstead Station. Soon the village of New Caledonia was absorbed by Olmstead. It is now the south part of that village.
I got this information from a book titled Ghost Towns in Illinois. I hope this information is of use to you.
If you can add more history to this document, or if you have a webpage that is related please send me an e-mail message.
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