1884 numbers of the Bay state monthlyBe the first and subjects of first 10 volumes and List of por.

The Granite monthly, a New Hampshire magazine, devoted to literature, history, and state progress (Volume 53) online

. (page 30 of 57)
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SULLIVAA/

CENTER.



t L JtVCTT



The Deweys were a remarkably the American Continent, his own

fine family. Timothy Dewey be- house on Grand .street, being the

came one of America's greatest first building successfully equipped

mechanics. While studying in for permanent illumination by gas.



SEWARD'S VILLAGE



281



Dewey's gas works, or those start-
ed under his initiative, were the
first ever devised for strictly me-
chanical uses. This distinguished
honor is hardly second to that of his
distinguished kinsman of later
times, who won the great naval vic-
torv in the harbor of Manila. The
Dewey family came from noble
stock, and their line is authentical-
ly traced to the Emperor Charle-
magne, and includes other sover-
eigns besides. The Dewey family
of Sullivan came there from Con-
necticut.

The Ellis family also developed
mechanical tastes. Austin A. Ellis,
who has been a mayor of Keene,
early displayed taste in the use of
lathes and delicate machinery.
This family was from Dedham,
Mass.. originally, and the descend-
ants removed to Keene and then to
Sullivan.

Joseph Felt, a Revolutionary sol-
dier, was father of the Deacon
Joseph Felt who was the first of the
name in Sullivan ; George Felt, the
emigrant ancestor, is said to have
come to America with Endicott.

John Field was a famous astron-
omer in England ; Dr. John Field,
the able and distinguished physi-
cian of Sullivan, was a descendant.

John Foster came from New Eng-
land with Roger Conant. Joseph
Foster, who lived in Sullivan, de-
serves to rank among the great in-
ventors of the world. He made a
telephone, which connected his shop
at Keene with the court house and
the town hall, long before the fam-
ous invention was announced by
those who are credited with the
discovery. He invented a machine
to spin wool from the mass, without
carding, by drawing out the fibre
in a continuous thread. The ma-
chine was in his shop when he
died, but no one else could ever put
it together. He was experiment-
ing with electricity at the same
time as Morse, and along similar



lines. In the old Hemenway shop
in Sullivan he built, in 1829, the
first cabinet organ ever made in the
world. The instrument received
the various names of melodeon,
aeolian, seraphine, and cabinet or-
gan, according to the form and
fashion of the case. This inven-
tion has now become one of the
most important in the country. He
left in his house, at his death, an in-
strument combining pipe organ,
reed organ, and piano, but no one
else could ever repair it.

Elder Edmund Frost came from
New Ipswich, England; a descend-
ant, Deacon Benjamin Frost of
Sullivan, was the father of three
sons who graduated from Dart-
mouth College, and of a daughter
who married the Rev. Arthur Little,
D. D., of Boston. Carlton P. Frost
studied medicine ; was in the ser-
vice of the U. S. Government during
the Civil War, and later was at
Hanover, where he was connected
with Dartmouth College. He was
the Dean of the Dartmouth Medi-
cal Department over twenty years;
was president of both Vermont and
New Hampshire Medical Societies.
In 1894 Dartmouth conferred on
him the honorary degree of EL. D.
His two sons have both been in-
structors at Dartmouth. A brother,
who also studied medicine, was
killed in the battle of Cold Harbor,
Va., in 1864.

Benjamin and Lydia Kemp had
four sons, all of whom followed
some profession. Two were physi-
cians, one a dentist, one a clergy-
man. The birthplace and ancestral
line of Benjamin Kemp have not
been learned.

Edmund Goodnow came from
England and settled in Sudbury,
Mass., in 1638. His descendants
who have lived in Sullivan have
been noted for rare mechanical skill,
as well as for exceptional musical
ability. Daniel Goodnow, the first
of the familv to settle at East Sulli-



282



THE GRANITE MONTHLY



van, was a skilful carpenter. His
son, Caleb, built the best grist mill
and the only bolting mill ever used
in his native town. There was
machinery in this mill which re-
quired much skill and ingenuity to
keep it in repair. Mr. Caleb Good-



tinction of being the first settler on
what is now Sullivan soil; his an-
cestral line cannot be traced.

Ralph Hemenway came from
England about 1632, and settled in
Roxbury, Mass.; Rev. Luther, a
descendant, invented an awl handle




M vsonian Monument.
Unveiled Aug. 27, 1907. This point was the northeast corner of the original Keene and

the southeast corner of original Gilsum.



now was a very particular man.
He would never operate a machine,
any more than he would play a
musical instrument, unless it were
in perfect order. It was his good
fortune that he could adjust his ma-
chinery, even as he could perfectly
tune an instrument. His children
inherited his mechanical tastes.
Stephen Gri.swold has the dis-



in his little shop in Sullivan. A
patent was procured for the inven-
tion, and the principle involved is
still in use. Pauline Hemenway, a
granddaughter of Rev. Luther, mar-
ried Domenico Altrocchi, and her
daughter became the wife of the
famous painter, Giacomo Martin-
netti, of Florence, Italy.

The Holbrook and Holt families



SEWARD'S VILLAGE



283



both came from England and set-
tled in Massachusetts, and their
descendants found their way to
Sullivan.

The ancestors of the Hubbard
family were first in Weathersfield,
Conn., and later in Massachusetts.
Roswell Hubbard, Esq., son of Rev.
John of Northfield, Mass., was an
uncle of Hon. Henry Hubbard,
Governor of New Hampshire in
1842 and 1843.

Rev. James Keith preached his
first sermon in America on a rock in
['Mill Pasture," Bridgewater, Mass.,
at the age of 18; Ichabod Keith was
in Sullivan, and Ellen S. (Keith)
Edwards has endeared herself to
all Sullivan people by her poems
for the Old Home Day celebrations
of her native town.

The Kendalls came from Lan-
caster, Mass., and the Kingsburys
from Dedham. The Locke family
was from England ; James Locke,
born Hopkinton, Mass., Dec. 5,
1728, had fourteen children. He
was a prominent man of affairs ;
was in the Revolutionary War ;
was also in the Massachusetts legis-
lature. He was a farmer and land
surveyor; he moved to Sullivan and
many of his descendants have lived
here. One of them, Dr. John
Locke, was an eminent scientist,
and was the inventor of the cele-
brated "electro chronograph" clock,
for which Congress voted him $10.-
0C0 in 1849 for the use of the in-
strument in the Naval Observatory.

Hugh Mason, a tanner, and one
of the first settlers of Watertown,
Mass., at the age of 28, with his
wife Esther, aged 22, emigrated
from England in 1634. The des-
cendants of the first Mason family
in Sullivan would form a small
township all by itself. Charles
Mason lived many years upon the
homestead in Sullivan ; he was one
of the most influential men of the
town; was a justice of the peace



and quorum throughout the state,
and represented the town in the
legislature. His brother, Orlando,
was one of the most brilliant busi-
ness men who have left Sullivan.
He and his wife visited Europe in
1883. He was active in forming
the Winchendon Savings Bank, of
which he was the president for
twenty-five years. He was also a
director of the First National Bank
of Winchendon ; a trustee of dish-
ing Academy, and a director of the
Fitchburg Mutual Fire Insurance
Company. He was a prominent
member of the North Congregation-
al church of "Winchendon, and for
twenty-two years the superintend-
ent of its Sunday school.

James Matthews belonged to a
Scotch Presbyterian family, and
was one of the celebrated Scotch-
Irish immigrants who came from
the north of Ireland. John May-
nard came from England nad was
in Sudbury, Mass., in 1638.

The ancestral emigrant of the
Miller family is unknown.

Samuel Morse of Dedham. Mass.,
wa.s born in England in 1585, emi-
grated to New England 1635. A
descendant, Thomas Jr., was one
of the earliest settlers in Sullivan.

William Munroe, born in Scot-
land, came to America in 1652.
William, of the fourth generation,
was a proprietor of the famous
Munroe's Tavern in Lexington,
where the British stopped and or-
dered their drinks, when marching
into that town on the memorable
nineteenth of April, 1775. His
litlte daughter, Anna, sat on the
counter and passed the drinks,
which Mr. Munroe, predicting that
they would call for that purpose,
had' requested his wife to mix,
when he left the house to join his
townsmen, to assist in defending the
town. The daughter Anna after-
wards became the wife of Rev.
William Muzzy, the first settled



284



THE GRANITE MONTHLY



minister of the gospel in Sullivan.

William M. Muzzy, son of Rev.
William and Anna, was one of the
three or four richest men who were
natives of Sullivan. He went to
Philadelphia at nineteen years of
age and learned the business con-
nected with the importation of fine
glass, and soon began business for
himself. He had an accurate mem-
ory of faces and names, which
served him well in business. He
was a gentleman of the old school
and a man greatly honored and re-
spected. At his death, he left an
estate of nearly or quite a million
dollars.

Benjamin Olcott, the second set-
tier in Sullivan, came from East
Haddam, Conn. ; his ancestral line
is not known. John. Osgood, born
in England, July 23, 1595, was one
of the founders of the town of An-
dover, Mass. ; Joshua of the sixth
generation came to Sullivan.
Fred W T heeler Osgood, a native of
Sullivan, was a graduate of Dart-
mouth College.

Deacon Thomas Parker came to
America in 1635. George Park-
hurst emigrated from England in
the same year, and was an early set-
tler of Watertown, Mass. Both
families had descendants in Sulli-
van.

The ancestor of James Phillips
came from Ireland, and Jonathan
Powell was the son of an English-
man who came to America before
the Revolution.

James Nash was an early settler
in Weymouth, Mass.; his descend-
ants in Sullivan have been many in
number.

Godfrey Nims, the first known of
the name in this country, first ap-
pears as a lad (Sept. 4, 1667)
in Northampton, Mass., where he
was punished for some slight youth-
ful misdemeanor. He was of
French origin, and is understood to
have been of a Huguenot family.
He married twice; two of the first



wife's children and three of the
second were captured and slain by
the Indians, February 29, 1704.
Mrs. Nims was taken at the same
time, and slain on the way to Can-
ada. Ebenezer, another child, was
carried to Canada where he was
adopted by a squaw. He married
Sarah Hoyt, who was also a cap-
tive of the Indians, and their first
child was born in Canada. They
were redeemed in 1714, and return-
ed to Deerfield, Mass., where they
had born a .son, David, March 30,
1716. This son came to Keene in
1740, and was the first town clerk
and town treasurer of Keene. He
had ten children, and it would re-
quire several pages to merely list
the names of their descendants con-
nected with the town of Sullivan.

The Proctor family of Sullivan is
descended from Robert of Concord,
Mass. Edward Raw.son, who was
state secretary of the Colony of
Massachusetts Bay, was the ances-
tor of the Sullivan family of that
name; his mother was Margaret,
sister of Rev. John Wilson, the first
preacher in Boston.

The Spaulding family have been
justly noted for mechanical in-
genuity. Thomas, the first to settle
in Sullivan, built the Hancock meet-
inghouse, the second Sullivan meet-
inghouse, and the second Dublin
meetinghouse. All the sons of
Thomas Spaulding were remark-
ably ingenious, and a grandson,
when a mere lad, made, with his
own hands, a wagon which was in
use several years.

Hon. Daniel W. Rugg, son of
Harrison and Sophia (Beverstock)
Rugg, is the only person who has
ever been elected to the state sen-
ate while a resident of the town.
Mr. Rugg was born in Sullivan, at-
tended its schools, and has been a
successful farmer. He represented
the town in the legislature and state
senate, and has held the most im-
portant town offices in Sullivan.



SEWARD'S VILLAGE



285



Hon. Lockhart Willard, who lived
in town at the time of its incorpo-
ration, and was the first town
treasurer, soon moved to Keene.
He was a state senator, a man of
energy, and a person of much
prominence in the community.

The ancestral line of the Towne
family is thought to go back to
Richard Towne of Bracelv, Eng-
land, before 1600.

The Seward family came from
England. Hon. Henry W. Seward
has been several times elected to
the General Court of Massachusetts
from Watertown, where he lived
after leaving Sullivan. Edgar S.,
William A., and Erving G., have
all been remarkably successful in
life and an honor to the town in
which they were born.

The ancestor of the Wilson
family of Sullivan came from Ty-
rone, Ireland, in 1737, with the
famous Scotch Irish emigrants. A
descendant was Hon. John Wilson
of Belfast, Me. (in the U. S. Con-
gress in 1813-14), and Sarah, whose
daughter married Hon. John Scott
Harrison, son of President William
Henry Harrison. Hon. Jarhes Wil-
son of Peterboro and Keene was
the father of Gen. James Wilson,
the well-known lawyer and orator
of Keene and a member of the U.
S. Congress. The Sullivan family
of Wilsons were closely related to
these Wilsons.

Joel Williston Wright was born
in Sullivan, and became an able in-
structor and a very learned 'and
skilful physician. There 'have
been several families of the Wright
name in Sullivan, but it has been
impossible to trace their ancestral
line.

Mothers of Sullivax

One of the toasts at the Centen-
nial Anniversary was:

Our Foremothers — Their spinning

wheels were their musical instruments ;
their power looms were moved by their



own muscles. No French cooking could
have made more appetizing their frugal,
yet excellent meals.

In response to this sentiment,
Mrs. Cynthia (Locke) Gerould,
sent the following poem, written in
her eighty-fourth year.

Don't look for a poem from one eighty-
three,

Fit at all for either yourself or for me.

My hair is as white as the snow that flies,

And I'm older than most who have gone
to the skies ;

But well I remember the days long ago,

When over the hills and through the deep
snow,

Not missing a day, to school we would go.

Our mothers then used the loom and the
wheel,

And around would fly the old clock-reel;

They bak'd and they churn'd, and made
the good cheese,

No new-fangl'd notions their muscles to
ease.

On Sunday, to "meeting" the people would

And sit without stove when flying the

snow;
A little foot-stove might warm the cold

feet,
And be handed along to another one's seat.
The pews they were square, the seats they

were hard.
And children would squeak where panels

were bar'd.
At noon they would gather and talk of the

news,
And, afternoon, come again to their pews.
Great changes have come, and the years

gone by;
No longer the wheel and home-shuttle fly ;
But — noble is life — and noble are they
Who've gleaned up their their his'try for

Century day.
So joy do 1 give you from one of old

stock,

Who, living among you, was

Cynthia Locke.

Anecdotes

Every village has "characters" as
well as its famous men, and there
were several of the character type in
Seward's Village,

"Maney" Hibbard, as she was
called, was supported many years
by the town. She had a temper
that was simply ferocious. She
would get so angry at the women
at whose house she was stopping



286



THE GRANITE MONTHLY



that she would lash herself into a
fit and throw herself upon the floor
and foam at the mouth.

The women so disliked to have
old "JYIaney" around that they
would plead with their husbands on
the morning of town meeting not
to "bid off" this unfortunate pauper.
When the bidding began, there
would be profound silence. It
could rarely get under way with-
out an adjournment to a store or
tavern, where a treat would be of-
fered to all bidders. This tempta-
tion would unseal the silent lips
and the poor creature would be bid
off to a dozen persons, for nobody
would dare to go home and face
his wife with the information that
he had dared to take, her for more
than a month, and on the first day
of each month, she would be
promptly taken to the next place,
if voads had to be specially broken
out to get her there.

Mrs. Pompey Woodward, a
colored woman, was another of the
"characters" of the town. In her
way .she was of a proud spirit. On
the first Sunday after her arrival
in town, as Pompey's bride, as they
approached the meetinghouse, sit-
ting on the same horse, she was
ove. heard saying, "Hold up your
head. Pomp, they will all look at
us," as was undoubtedly the case.
When the pews of the second
meetinghouse were sold, she insist-
ed on Pompey's buying a pew on
the lower floor "where the respect-
able people sat." She wanted a
house which would be the equal of
any in town. She prevailed upon
Pompey to take down an old house,
and erect a two-story (or "upright")
house. They got the frame raised
and there the work ceased. Final-
ly they boarded off a little room in
one corner, in which they lived as
best they could. While living in
this plight, the old woman entered
a store in Keene to do some shop-



ping, and said to the trader, "Only
three men in our neighborhood
have upright houses, Deacon Sew-
ard, Captain Seward and Mr. IVood-
ward."

She stammered badly, which can-
not here be imitated, but which
added to the grotesque nature of her
speech. As winter approached,
the neighbors clearly saw that the
Woodwards could never go through
the season in that fashion and they
clubbed together and took the old
frame and some timber which they
provided and built them a little
cottage; but the old ladv was ex-
ceedingly dissatisfied because it was
not an "upright" house.

Another woman of eccentric-
character was a town charge for a
long time. She was a good woman,
but very sensitive and peculiar in
her disposition. Children enjoyed
calling upon her, because of her
very quaint observations. On one
occasion when some young ladies
called at her cottage, she said : "I
never drink tea, for it unravels my
nerves."

THE OLD SCHOOLHOUSE*

I remember, well remember, the school-
house on the hill,

And the band of youthful schoolmates I
well remember still ;

That band, alas ! is broken — the grave has
had a share,

And some are widely scattered — they are
gone, we know not where.

I remember the old bucket that then hung

in the well ;
To sink it in the crystal fount how from

the curb it fell ;
When we had dipped the bucket deep, and

filled it to the brim,
We drew it dripping from the well and

drank from its mossy rim.

I remember all the teachers, each one in I

their turn, —
Some were mild and cheerful, others were |

harsh and stern ;
Some would try to please us and our

weary hours beguile,
Others would oft'ner greet us with a

frown than with a smile."



*Verse from a poem written by Dauphin W. Wilson.



SEWARD'S VILLAGE



287



One of Sullivan's "sons," (Dr. G.
W. Keith) sent this to the Cen-
tennial Celebration:

"I know .something about our
public schools — and will give a few
of the sweet, slippery and sticky
reminiscences of my school-boy
days — especially the stick-y. When
I hrst began to yearn for an educa-
tion 1 lived in 'Yarmount,' and was
four years of age. My parents told



time came for the boy's recess, I
had resolved, as soon as I was out,
to play the role of Prodigal Son and
return home. I knew two of the
boys — Ike Kingsbury, a little
rusty, scrawny chap in nankeen
breeches and dirty wdiite jacket,
with bare feet and sore toes, and
Gabriel, not the original, but Gabriel
Doaney, a tall-round-shouldered
French boy, whose complexion re-









Schoolhouse, District No. 3. Built 1849.

Reunion of Scholars previous to 1860, 10th June, 1911. 29 present.

Dr. S. M. Dinsmoor, Teacher.



me I was not old enough to go to
School, but I knew better, and so
like Mary's little lamb, I followed
my sister to school one day, and
was uncomfortably seated upon the
low bench, and there I sat — the
longest hour I had ever known —
feeling like the disobedient cock
down in the well, who 'ne'er had
been in this condition, but for my
mother's prohibition!' Before the



sembled the inside of mouldy hem-
lock bark; and these two I tried to
persuade to run away, but they
were loyal and would not go, and
when the raps came on the window-
sash, the good boys went in and T
ran for home, keeping an eye over
my shoulder to see if I was not
being pursued by the teacher — not
being able to understand that my
room would be better than my com-



288



THK GRANITE MONTHLY



pany. I did not go to school again
for two years, and then was sent.
I walked a mile and a half, and
stood in the dignified presence of
the teacher, Madame Wood, ma-
triculated — that is, told her my
name, and saw her write it down
in a little green-covered book — and
commenced storing my mind with
the lore of the public school, and
with school-boy . tricks — especially
the latter. Before the first term
ended I had learned to read in the
'Easy Lessons,' to spell words of
two syllables, to chew gum, whis-
per, throw paper wads, .spill my ink,
tread on the next boy's toes, make
the girls giggle by facial contor-
tions, 'sass' the teacher, fight with
the boys, throw stones through the
window, and run awa'y at intermis-
sion to attend 'training' at Keene.
I had been kept after school, had
held down a nail, toed the mark for
an hour with my hands behind me,
had been .sent home (though I
never went more than half way),
had had my ears boxed and pulled,
had been gently swayed to and fro
by my foretop (which undoubtedly
caused the premature barefooted-
ness on top of my head), and wal-
loped with a birch stick. I remem-
ber the evening after the last men-
tioned performance asking my
mother if our school was a publick
school, and remarking that I had no
fault to find with the pub part of it,
but the lick was not agreeable."

In one of Mrs. Edwards' poem,
she .says :

Once again I tread the pathway

Leading to the school-room door ;
Once again I list to voices

We, on earth, shall hear no more :
Once again as when the shadows

Of those autumn evenings fell,
I can hear the clear tones ringing

Of the dear old study bell.

Hnw all fun and laughter vanished
When we heard its warning sound ;

No rest then, until the values
Of x, y, and z were found;



How we strove for thoughts deep hidden

Milton's epic lines among,
Or stored up with mem'ry's treasures

Some loved poet's glad, sweet song.

Meeting House

The second meetinghouse built
in Seward's Village was 49 by 37
feet with porches at the east and
west ends, through which were
reached the side, or end entrance
to the audience room. In each
porch was a stairway leading to the
gallery. The front door opened di-
rectly into the broad isle, at the op-
posite, or northern, end of which
was the pulpit. The pulpit was
reached by a long flight of stairs.
The pulpit front and the stairs and
balustrade and gallery fronts and
supporting columns were painted a
light blue. There was a thick
cushion upon the pulpit to support
the Bible.

The pews were of the prevailing
"square pew type" of that period.
All were provided with doors.
The ends and doors of the pews
were panelled. There was a
"spindle balustrade," or as some-
times expressed " a row of little
spindles," about the tops of the
sices of the pews, each ".spindle"
being about six inches or more long.
Most of these "spindles" could be
turned around, which often fur-
nished amusement lor little chil-
dren during service.

These pews were unpainted and
as time went on, rude boys whit-
tled them very badly. Contrary to
custom, there was no sounding
board over the pulpit. There were
two services on each Sunday, at
10:30 a. m. and 1 o'clock p. m. with
a Sunday School between the two
services. The sermon was often
an hour in length. One pastor had
sermons which it took two hours
to deliver, preaching one half in the
forenoon and the other half in the
afternoon. The choir was com-
posed of all persons who were will-



SEWARD'S VILLAGE



289



ing to sing. The hymn book was
Watts' and Select Hymns. There
was no musical instrument except
a bass viol. Reuben Morse "pitch-
ed the tunes" for many years.

During the long prayer (which
was rarely less than fifteen, and
often twenty minutes in length),



Online Library1884 numbers of the Bay state monthlyBe the first and subjects of first 10 volumes and List of porThe Granite monthly, a New Hampshire magazine, devoted to literature, history, and state progress (Volume 53) → online text (page 30 of 57)