BLOG: Sandusky man wins the war!

Tom Jackson
May 10, 2011


Sandusky native Jay Cooke didn't win the Civil War by himself, but he did contribute to the Union's victory by helping to finance the North's war effort, according to "The Battle Cry of Freedom," the Pulitzer Prize-winning history of war by James McPherson.

Chapter 14 of the book, which I recently began reading, explains that President Lincoln's secretary of the treasury, Salmon P. Chase, knew little about banking but was a quick learner. Jay Cooke was Chase's "principal tutor," the book says.

"Chase pioneered the concept of selling bonds to ordinary people, as well as to bankers, in denominations as small as $50 to be paid in monthly installments. Cooke undertook to market these bonds by patriotic advertising that anticipated the great war-bond drives of the 20th century," the book says.

If you want to learn more about Cooke, Ellis P. Oberholtzer's two volume 1907 biography, "Jay Cooke: Financier of the Civil War" has entered the public domain and is a free download.



Rust Belt Resident

No mention of Cooke castle on gibraltar island or the history of Cooke in the region? So close to a good story but yet so far. I just read chapter three in a biology book, it was about plants and animals Darwin was involved. Is that news-worthy? The history of the lake erie islands runs deep. We just forget to walk past the bar and look at what and who really used to be here. Now if its not a shooting, a drug related arrest, a rape, or something we can scare our kids to sleep with we don't waste the ink or the paper. Sad state of affairs. Why doesn't the register run a summer long history special on the town and the area? Bootlegging, Civil War camps, Underground Railroad... Its all there and maybe a kid would learn something other than shootings get me attention that nobody else will give me!!!


I agree, this area is rich with history. I would love to see more of this in the paper. Education is a wonderful thing.

Captain Gutz

All that history is too readily available online, it doesn't help to sell any newspapers.



Jay Cooke was heavily involved in financial scandals with the Canadian Government and caused the Prime Minister Sir John A. Macdonald to lose his office in the 1873 election.


Cooke's legacy is honored in the name of Jay Cooke State Park, a large state park located near Duluth, Minnesota, and the name of the village of Cooke City, Montana.

His name was also used for Cooke Township in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania. 

The School District of Philadelphia's Jay Cooke Elementary School is named in his honor.

Jay Cooke also has a street named after him in Cheltenham Township, Cooke Rd.


But nothing in this area to commemorate him, other than Cooke Street. You ever been down Cooke Street? It's almost as bad as Lincoln Street.



Interesting.    $50.00 bond?   That was huge back then.           Please going further  S.R.  Let the people know about the use of Route 4 & other valid items.                    This area stepped up regarding warfare & taking it  2Johnny Reb.


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