George Thomas Little.

Genealogical and family history of the state of Maine; (Volume 3) online

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he gave up the shipping business altogether.
In the latter year he joined the firm of Peter
S. Nickerson & Company, and dealt in wood
and coal. He was a Republican, and for a
number of years was prominently identified
with Republican politics in ward three, being a

candidate in some of the memorable three or
four days caucuses they held in that ward in
days gone by. He served two years (1894-95)
in the council, but declined to become a candi-
date for alderman, although often urged to
do so. He was an attendant of the Congrega-
tional church. Fie was a member of the board
of trade and the following fraternal organi-
zations: Portland Lodge, No. i. Free and
Accepted Masons ; Greenleaf Chapter, No. 13,
Royal Arch Masons, Portland Council, No. 4,
Royal and Select Masters ; St. Alban Com-
mandery. No. 8, Knights Templar ; Maine^Cop-
sistory. Sublime Princes of the Royal ' §ecf'ef ;
Kora Temple, Ancient Arabic Order. of 'N^6-
bles of the ]\Iystic Shrine, and a thirty-s'^cbrid
degree Mason ; and lona Chapter, Order of
the Eastern Star. Also Harmon Lodge, No.
19, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of
which he was a past grand ; Woodbine Lodge,
Rebeccas; Machigonne Encampment, No. I,
Patriarchs Militant ; Pine Tree Lodge, Knights
of Pythias; Improved Order of Red Men;
the Ancient Order of United Workmen ;
the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks,
No. 188; and Forest City Castle, Knights of
the Golden Eagle. Peter S. Nickerson mar-
ried, December 25, 1878, at Portland, Ella
Frances Nash, born in Portland, May 22, 1853,
daughter of David W. and Mary E. (Smith)

The name of Skelton is quite
SKELTON unusual in this country, and

most of its earlier representa-
tives lived in the south, where they ranked
among the best families of \'irginia. In Eng-
land the house dates back to .ancient times.
During the reign of Edward I. one of the
Skeltons of Armathwaite Castle, county Cum-
berland, represented that county in parliament.
Their arms were: Field Azure, a Fess Or
with a Cornish chough Sable beaked and
legged Gules. Crest, a peacock's head erased
proper in the beak, an acorn Or stalked and
leaved \'ert. The chough is a bird not met
with in American literature, but readers of
Shakespeare will remember tliat the poet
speaks of "russet-pated choughs" in "]\Iidsum-
mer Night's Dream." The bird belongs to the
Crow family. The Virginia Skeltons are said
to be descended from the Cumberland house,
and their arms are the same, except that in
the American escutcheon the chough is re-
placed by three fieur de lis Or. Air. James
Skelton, a gentleman of wealth and high so-
cial standing, was living in the parish of Saint
James, county Goochland, Virginia, as early as

^/..< 9^ McU




the year 1735. He married Jane Meriwether,
whose mother, iMary Bathurst, was a member
of the ancient family of Bathurst, England.

The only Skelton mentioned among the
early settlers of New England is Rev. James
Skelton, who came to Salem, Massachusetts,
from county Lincoln, England, June 29, 1629.
He was nearly two months on the voyage, hav-
ing set sail from the Isle of Wight on May
fourth. He was born in 1584, bred at Clare
Hall, Cambridge University, where he took de-
grees in 161 1 and 1614. He might have filled
an important place in the new community, but
his early death, August 2, 1634, cut short all
achievement. It is thought his widow married
again, and traces of his descendants have been
lost. The following line is derived from a
more recent immigrant.

(I) Thomas Skelton came from England
about 1790 and settled at Alonmouth, Alaine.
The region at that time was in the heart of the
forest, and much patience and energy were re-
quired to clear a farm. Thomas Skelton mar-
ried Mary Wright and moved to Bowdoin,
where their six children were born : Thomas
(2), whose sketch follows; Richard, William,
Robert, Mary and Sidney. The original
Thomas Skelton appears to have achieved suc-
cess and prosperity for those days, because it
is recorded that he had the first spring wagon,
hung on leather straps, ever seen in his town,
and he often told how proud he felt when he
drove through the village in it.

(II) Thomas (2), eldest child of Thomas
(i) and Mary (Wright) Skelton, was born at
Monmouth, Maine, March 26, 1807. He
worked with his father on the home farm and
attended school ; and later he learned ship car-
pentry, at which he was employed many years
in Bath. He married Mehitable Preble, of
Bowdoinham, about 1830, and they went to
live in Bowdoin, where their seven children
were born : Sidney, 1832 ; Dorcas, Rebecca,
]\Iiriam, Helen, Susan A. and Thomas W.

(III) Thomas W., youngest of the seven
children of Thomas (2) and Mehitable
(Preble) Skelton, was born December 3, 1845,
at Bowdoin, Maine. He was brought up on
the home farm where he still lives. He had
good educational opportunities in his youth,
and for several years engaged in school teach-
ing during the winter, spending the summer
on the farm. He finally gave up the teaching
and devoted his whole time to agriculture. He
is a Republican in politics, and attends the
Methodist church. February 7, 1870, he mar-
ried Mary Luella, daughter of John and Sarah
(Knight) Holbrook, of Bowdoin. Her great-

grandfather was one of the Holbrooks of
Harpswcll and came thence to Bowdoin.
Thomas W. and Mary Luella (Holbrook)
Skelton had two children : William B., whose
sketch follows ; Linwood Thomas, born No-
vember 25, 1872, married Eleanor AUard,
daughter of Horatio C. Allard, of Litchfield,
]Maine, and they live on the homestead at Bow-

(I\') William Bertram, elder of the two
sons of Thomas W. and ^lary Luella (Hol-
brook) Skelton, was born at Bowdoin, Alaine,
August 9, 1871. He received his early educa-
tion in the public schools of Bowdoin, attended
the Nichols Latin school, and graduated from
Bates College in 1892. He began reading hiu
in the office of Newell & Judkins, of Lewis-
ton, and was admitted to the bar in October,
1893. On January i, 1894. he entered into
partnership with Mr. Newell under the firm
name of Newell & Skelton. Mr. Skelton is a
Republican in politics, and his first office was
that of councilman in the city of Lewiston. He
then served two terms as mayor, from 1903 to
1905, meanwhile filling the office of county at-
torney from 1901 to 1905. On July 20, 1906,
his appointment as bank examiner took effect,
and he is now holding that position. William
B. Skelton is judge advocate general on the
stafif of Governor Cobb with the rank of
colonel. He is a Mason of the thirty-second
degree, belonging both to the Scottish Rite
and the Shrincrs, and is past master of Blue
Lodge, Rabboni. On May 21, 1894, William
Bertram Skelton married Florence L., daugh-
ter of W. S. and Elmira (Smith) Larrabee, of
Auburn. They have six children : William
Larrabee. born November 15, 1895; Harold
Newell, January i, 1899; Thomas Reginald.
February 22, igoi ; Florence Luella, August
6, 1902: John Holbrook, April 19, 1905; Ruth
Elizabeth, July 28, 1907.

James Ashby was born in Lin-
ASHBY colnshire, England, March 5.

1818, son of Thomas Ashby. He
came to New Brunswick. Canada, as a British
soldier at the time of the Aroostook war in
1834, and after his discharge from the army
he settled in Aroostook county and in 1846
located a tract of land in what is now Fort
Fairfield township. He cleared the land and
cultivated a farm. He married, Alay i, 1850,
Catherine, daughter of Ferdinand Armstrong,
who had settled in 1820 at Parkhurst Siding
near Presque Isle, Aroostook county. The
children of James and Catherine (Armstrong)
Ashby W'Cre : i. Wilmot T., born March 3,



1851. resides in Presque Isle, Maine. 2.
James X., born October 10, 1852, removed to
Colorado, now member of Colorado legisla-
ture. 3. Hiram E., September 3, 1853, died
September 7, 1857. 4- I'iose L., born October
31, 1855, died April 27, 1881, 5- Bertba M.,
born January 19. 1857, married a Mr. Kelly,
of Colorado.' 6. Fred C, born April 22, 1859,
died Tune 2, 1888. 7. Herbert E., born June
12, 1S61, died May 3, 1891. 8. Laura E., who
married a Mr. Clark, of Fort Fairfield, Maine.
9. George I'erdinaiul (q. v.).

(II) George Ferdinand, son of James and
Catherine (.Armstrong) Ashby, was born in
Fort Fairfield, Maine. July 10, 1870. He at-
tended the public school of his native town,
and remained on the homestead with his father
up to the time of his death, November 13.
1895, when he arranged with the widow and
his brothers and sisters by which he became
owner of the farm and homestead. He had
learned the practical part of the business of
farming from his father, and he added to this
knowledge by study and observation. He
found diversified farming to be more profitable
than the old fashioned system held to by his
father, and his farm took on a new face. Fine
stock, abundant harvests and the use of mod-
ern machinery in cultivating and gathering the
crops, which were abundant, soon replaced the
more tedious antiquated methods of farming,
and in the meetings of the Grange of the
Patrons of Husbandry he was a recognized
leader, and his advice as to modes of cultiva-
tion, harvesting and marketing proved of ben-
efit to the entire community, and Grange No.
153. Patrons of Husbandry, through his wise
counsel, became one of the most popular and
authoritative in Aroostook county. The
progress of agriculture and the almost fabulous
crops of potatoes, grain and fruit raised in the
county became the wonder of the farmers in
the older settled parts of Maine. Mr. Ashby
was affiliated with P'rontier Lodge, No. 112.
Ancient Free and -Accepted Masons, of Fort
Fairfield. He married, August 6. i8g8, Eliza-
beth, daughter of Charles Waldron, and they
had five children: i. Norman W., born Sep-
tember 21, 1899. 2. June C, born June 29,
1905. 3. Jean A., born June 29, 1905. 4.
Louise E., born March 30, 1907. 5. James F.,
born November 3, igo8. Mr. and Mrs. Ashby
and their five bright and interesting children
form a family circle known throughout the
county for the ministration of a genuine hos-
pitality to a large circle of friends, and the
stranger that passes, led by the remarkable
beauty of a typical modern farmer's home, is

sure of the hearty welcome of a pleasant host
and of an attractive and tactful hostess.

This is probably a distinct fam-
ATKINS ily from the one wdiose Amer-
ican ancestor was Joseph Clark
Atkins, an account of which is given elsewhere
in this work. But in this case, as well as the
one referred to, orphans were left without
family history from which they can formulate
their lineage. It is supposed that they are de-
scendent from the Cape Cod family of the
same name.

(I) Edwin Henry Atkins, a resident of
Kennebunkport, Maine, is the son of Thomas
and Lydia A. Atkins, who resided for many
years at South Boston, Massachusetts, until
the death of Thomas, at which time the widow
took up her residence at Kennebunkport. Ed-
win H. studied for the ministry at Wesleyan
L'niversity, ]Middletown, Connecticut, for the
Methodist denomination, but his healtli not be-
ing good, he took up the machinist's trade at the
W'aliham watch factory, and later located at
Hallowell, Maine, in the retail boot and shoe
business, and after that removed to Gardiner,
Maine, where he continued successfully in the
same business until 1894, at which time, on
account of the poor health of his mother, he
re-located at Kennebunkport, his present resi-
dence, where he enjoys a lucrative business
and the confidence of the people of that town.
Politically Mr. Atkins is a Republican. Dur-
ing his residence at Hallowell, he served as su-
perintendent of schools. He is identified with
and an ardent worker in the Methodist Epis-
copal church. He is an honored member of
the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, be-
longing to Asylum Lodge of Augusta, Maine,
and having been noble grand and representa-
tive to the Grand Lodge of that order. He
married Mary Ellen Clough, born at Kent's
Hill, of good old New England stock. Their
children are : Thomas E., Will C. and May F.
Thomas E. is located at Kennebunkport as an
expert machinist and electrician, and May F.
is the teacher of music in the schools of Ken-

(II) Will Clough, son of Edwin Henry and
Mary Ellen (Clough) Atkins, was born Au-
gust 25, 1873, in Hallowell, Maine. He se-
cured a good education at the excellent public
schools of Hallowell and Gardiner, graduating
from the high school at the latter place in
1892. He taught school and did newspaper
work and at the same time took up the study
of law with Hon. O. B. Clason, of Gardiner,
being admitted to the Kennebec bar in 1894 at



the age of twenty-one. He then attended the
law department of Yale' University at New
Haven, Connecticut, taking his degree of
LL. B. in 1896, and being connected with the
debating work and athletic side of the school
life. He then returned to Gardiner and
formed a law partnership with Mr. Clason.
This relation existed until the autumn of 1897,
when he opened an independent office in the
Patten block, Gardiner. His practice has
grown until to-day it has become lucrative and
extensive, and he has had as varied a prac-
tice as any of the younger members of the
county bar. In politics ]\Ir. Atkins is a sup-
porter of the Republican party; has served as
city solicitor seven years ; as president of both
branches of the city government of which he
was a member five years ; was nominated and
elected mayor of Gardiner in 1907-08, without
a dissenting vote at either caucus or polls. He
is the youngest man ever elected mayor of
Gardiner. He has been chief ranger of the
Foresters of America, Court Robert Emmet ;
chancellor commander of Gardiner Lodge,
Knights of Pythias, and exalted ruler of Au-
gusta Lodge of Elks. *He has also been the
•district deputy grand exalted ruler of the lat-
ter order. He attends the Congregational
church. He was married in 1901 to Alice AI.
(Goud) Tasker, daughter of Fred and Abbie
(Jackson) Goud, of Farmingdale, Maine.

The counties of Waterford,
PHELAN Queens and Limerick, Ireland,

counties almost contiguous and
all in the southern portion of the island, have
given to America statesmen and clergymen of
renowji. From county Queens we have had
James Phelan (1821-1873), confederate states
senator, whose grandfather was Dennis
Phelan, who came from Maryborough, Ire-
land, to New York, in 1796, resided in New
Jersey, Virginia and Alabama, and settled in
Huntsville, Alabama, where his son John mar-
ried Priscilla Oakes (Ford) Morris, and
where their son James, the senator, married
Eliza Jones, daughter of Dr. Alfred and Eliza
(Jones) Moore, of Madison county, Alabama.
He was lawyer, state senator, confederate
state senator and judge advocate of Alabama,
and his son James (1856-1891) was a repre-
sentative for Tennessee in the United States
congress, 1887-gi, of Alabama. From county
Limerick came the Rt. Rev. Richard Phelan.
born in Tralee, January i, 1828, ordained
priest May 4, 1854, in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania,
coadjutant bishop of the sees of Pittsburg and
Allegheny with right of succession in 1885,

and consecrated titular of Cibyra, Au-
gust 2, 1885, a"d on the death of' Bishop
Trigg, December 7, 1889, became his suc-

(I) From county Waterford we find the
name of William Phelan (1730-1802), who
married Mary Keerwan, was a farmer and had
sons : John, Patrick, Richard and William
(q. v.).

(II) William (2), son of William (1) and
Mary (Keerwan) Phelan, was born in county
Waterford, Ireland, in 1802, and was brought
up as a farmer. He married Mary, daughter
of Philip Coffee: seven children, all born in
county Waterford, and baptized in the parish
church : Margaret, John, Richard William,
Alice, Katherine, Patrick and Thomas. Of
these children Richard William and Thomas
were the only ones to come to America. The
father was an industrious man, beloved by his
neighbors, and he died highly respected in the
ancestral home in county Waterford in 1894,
succeeded by children and grandchildren.

(III) Richard William, son of William (2)
and Mary (Coffee) Phelan, was born in the
family homestead in county Waterford. Ire-
land, March 13, 1855. He was brought up on
his father's farm, and like his father was in-
dustrious and frugal. He was educated in the
parish school, and his parents having shown
a great desire that he siiould study for the
priesthood, he bent his course of study to that
end under the direction of the parish priest,
who advised him to prepare for matriculation
at St. Patrick's College, Carlow. and was grad-
uated in philanthropy and ethics with excel-
lent standing in the class of 1874, and after
making his theological course at St. Patrick's
he received ordination in June, 1879. He was
induced to make America the field of his work
in the priesthood, and was sent to Manchester,
New Hampshire, as assistant to the Rev.
Father McDonald, pastor of St. Anne's
Church, where he served, 1881-82. From this
parish he went to St. Gabriel's Church, Win-
terport, Maine, as pastor, and here he did
much to build up a rather weak parish and to
enthuse the Catholic community with new zeal.
He serveil this parish 1883-88, and was next
pastor of St. David's Church, Rockland,
Maine. He had hardly become acquainted
with the people of this parish when the church
was destroyed by fire. In rebuilding he se-
cured the permission from the bishop to re-
name the parish St. Bernard, and a beautiful
new edifice soon took the place of the ashes of
the old building, and the people came for miles
around to aid him, and the parish expanded


and many schools accessory to the new church
were established and the education of the chil-
dren and the care of the poor and afflicted was
his incessant delight. He established and had
charge of museums at Hurricane Island and
\iiial Haven, and accepted the chaplaincy of
the State Penitentiary at Thomaston, in order
to better help in his work of saving souls. In
1907 he was removed to Bath. Maine, and was
given charge of St. Mary's Church in that
city, where he found a larger field still for his
indominable spirit of service and helpfulness.
No communion in Maine has shown so great
advancement in growth and prosperity as that
of the Roman Catholic church, and the mis-
sionary work of the clergyman of the church
extends far beyond the confines of the several
parishes and new churches are demanded con-
stantly to provide for the overflow from the
outlying districts that were crowding the
mother churches.

The surname Joscelyn is
JOSCELYN variously spelled both in

England and America. The
Joslin family of Massachusetts is of the same
stock as the English Joscelyns. The history
of the family extends back to the time of the
Norman Conquest in 1066, in England, and
much further than that in Normandy, whence
came the progenitor, Sir Gilbert Joscelyne,
with Duke William. A daughter of Emperor
Charlemagne married Count Jocelyne, whose
pedigree is known for some generations
earlier. Egidius Josceline, son of Gilbert, was
given large estates in England after the Nor-
man Conquest, and it is believed by genealo-
gists that all the old English families of Josce-
lyn and Joslin are descended from Sir Gilbert
Joscelyn, of the Conqueror's army. The fam-
ily possessed the lordships of Sempringham
and Tyrington, Gilbert Joscelyn, son of Sir
Gilbert, devoted himself to the Roman Catholic
religion, and founded the order of priesthood
called the Gilbertines, and was canonized as a
saint by Pope Innocent III, in 1202. The
younger son, Thomas Joscelyn, married
Maude, daughter of John Hyde, of Hyde Hall,
and his heiress. She was also granddaughter
of Baron Sudeley, and by this marriage a large
estate, which is still owned by the Joscelyns,
came into the family. One of this stock mar-
ried Anne, heiress of the Percys, who became
Duke of Northumberland ; another was a
signer of the Magna Charta; another is the
present Earl of Roden. The family has had
many distinguished members in both England

and America. There are several coats-of-arms.
That of the Cornwall family at JNlount Trega-
menian, is : Azure three escalops or. In Es-
sex county the family bears: Chequy gules
and azure on a f esse of the first an annulet or.
Another : Gules three escarbuncles argent.

(I) David Joscelyn, immigrant ancestor,
ws born in England, and settled in Virginia

after the Revolution. He married

Snell. Children : Daniel J. P., George, David,

(II) Daniel J. P., son of David Joscelyn,
was born in Virginia, in 1803, and died in
1884. He married Charity Hitt. He removed
to New York City. Children : William J.,
mentioned below ; Nellie, Mary, Cornelia, Bet-

(III) William J., son of Daniel J. P. Josce-
lyn, was born in New York City, in 1837. He
was educated in the public schools of his na-
tive city and at Harvard College. He taught
school in New York state for a time, and
afterward engaged in the lumber business in
northern New York, and did a large business
during all the rest of his life until he retired.
In politics he is a Republican ; in religion a
Methodist. He married, in 1861, Mary Owens,
born in New York City. Children : Robert
Nelson, mentioned below ; Jonas, Walter, Ed-
win, Lillian, James, died aged five years.

(IV) Robert Nelson, son of William J.
Joscelyn, was born in New York City, May
26, 1864. He received his early education in
the public schools of his native city. He be-
gan the study of law in Columbia Law School,
but afterward left the law to study divinity at
the Minnesota School of Theology, where he
graduated. He was ordained in the Methodist
Episcopal Church, and preached in Minnesota
in various towns for fourteen years. At Al-
bert Lea, Minnesota, he founded, owned and
edited the Ezrning Tribune, a daily newspaper.
He was chaplain of the state senate two years.
In Minnesota the chaplaincy is an elective
office, and has the same salary as senators.
From Minnesota Mr. Joscelyn removed to
Delaware, and after two years there to Gardi-
ner, Maine, and thence in 1905 to Biddeford.
where he has been pastor of the Methodist
Episcopal Church to the present time. He is
a member of the lodge of Odd Fellows of Mor-
ton, Minnesota. He married, October 29,
1888, Anna Luella, daughter of William Ham-
mill, of Wisconsin. Children: i. Wilhelmina
E., born September 17, 1890. 2. Flora Lucile,
born October 26, 1894, at Wells, Minnesota.
3. Myrtle Phillips, born January 10, 1897, at



St. Peter's, AFinnesota. 4. William J., born
April 25, 1899, at Albert Lea, Minnesota. 5.
Priscilla G., born June 12, 1903, at Gardiner,

(For ancestry see Reynolds, p. 1208.)

(V) Nathaniel (4), voun^-
REYNOLDS er son'of Nathaniel (3) and
Mary ( S n e 1 1 ) Reynolds
(see page 1208), was born in Bridgewater,
about 1 7 16- 1 7, and settled in North Bridge-
water. He married (first) in 1739, Hannah,
daughter of Samuel Hartwell, who died, leav-
ing two sons (Philip, born 1740, Jonas 1742).
His second wife was Mary Tolman, of Bridge-
water. They had eight children, and it is
stated that the father moved from Bridgewa-
ter to Vassalboro, Maine, with the five young-
est (presumably after the death of his second
wife). Children by second marriage: Tim-
othy, born 1746; Hannah, 1750, married, 1769,
William Packard; Mary, 1754, married Dea-
con Henry Packard, 1774; Nathaniel, 1757,
married Bethia, daughter of Levi Keith, 1777;
David, 1759; Silane, 1760; Jonathan, 1764,
married 1794, Anna Thayer; Cynthia, 1769.

(VI) Jonathan, fourth son of Nathaniel
(4) and Mary (Tolman) Reynolds, was born
in Bridgewater, in 1764. He married, 1794,
Anna, daughter of Jeremiah and Tabitha
(Leavitt) Thayer, born in 1769. They moved
to Sidney, Maine. There is no definite record
of their family, but probably the following data
refers to their son and his descendants. It is
believed that they also had a son Adua, and
probably other children.

(VII) Leavitt (probably) son of Jonathan
and Anna (Thayer) Reynolds, was born in
Sidney, Maine, about 1798, and married Ex-
perience Spaulding; they settled in Winslow,
Maine. He was a lumberman, and in politics
a Republican. Their children were: Thomas,
Adua, Vose, Timothy, Solomon Eaton, Leav-
itt, Susan, Aclisa, Ann, Mary J., Abisie and
Betsey. It is stated that this line had Rey-
nolds relatives in Augusta, Sidney, Vassalboro

Online LibraryGeorge Thomas LittleGenealogical and family history of the state of Maine; (Volume 3) → online text (page 72 of 128)