APRIL 11, 1814
About 200 years ago today, Simeon Lamb and Jacob Mendenhall were trying to recover from a failed business partnership. According to the Stevens Centennial History, Lamb built one of the first crude structures in the new town of Salem. It was located on Lot 83 which is at the southeast corner of the intersection of East Walnut Street and North High Street. A store of sorts was built there even though none of the streets had yet been cleared of trees and underbrush. Lamb had taken over the trading post at the salt lick from Frederick Royse in about 1804. Although the trading post was being surrounded by new settlers staking claims to the newly opened land around the Saline Reserve and the School Section, Lamb must have realized that the settlement of Salem would spell doom for his trading post. Lamb and Mendenhall formed some sort of venture which led to Mendenhall's financial ruin. Mendenhall lost his 160 acres immediately north of Benjamin Brewer. The tract was acquired by Zachariah Nixon who quickly started to develop it when Salem was laid out. The new store on North High built by Lamb must have had some initial success as Mendenhall was able to take title to the lot on 4/15/1815 after paying his purchase balance to John DePauw a year after contracting to buy it.