He was generous and good-natured, but his firmness did not allow him to be imposed upon.
He was not disposed to quarrel or — to fight on his own account, but it is related of him that he once fought and punished a Canadian boy who insulted the memory of Washington
He was not without ambition, but it was by no means the only motive of his actions, or led him to do more than faithfully and persistently attend to the duty in hand.
He was patriotic, and had a laudable desire to serve his country as a soldier rather than as a politician.
Though exhibiting no special aptitude for military life, except firmness and fidelity to duty, his modesty and reticence saw no attractions in the political field.
One of the traits of his character earliest to be developed was his love for horses, and his faculty of managing them.
From his infancy he loved a horse, and learned to ride one long before he learned to read.
When only seven and a half years old, during his father's absence, he harnessed to a sled a three-year-old colt, which had never been broken except to the saddle, and drove the animal all day, carrying loads of brushwood.
He was afraid of no horse, and not only became an expert driver, but an excellent tamer and trainer of horses even before he was twelve years old. He taught them to pace with remarkable facility, and his neighbors, near and far, were very desirous of having his service in this line, though he was not inclined to become a mere horse-trainer.
He rode with more than the skill of a circus-rider, for his rides were in the rough and open fields without the advantages of the “ring;” but his feats were for his own amusement and his own satisfaction, and not for the eye of any one