George Thomas Little.

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

. (page 99 of 128)
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IRISH England about 1715 and settled in

the old seaport town of Falmouth,
on the coast of Maine. When they arrived
the town had been occupied by the descend-
ants of the English settlers who first came
under George Cleeves and Richard Tucker
for forty-four years. The settlement was
founded in 1633, on land known under the
Indian name Mashigonne, but the Indians de-
stroyed the town in 1676, and it was not re-
built until 1680, under President Darforth.
The town was again entirely destroyed by the
French and Indians in 1690, and the inhabi-
tants who escaped death took refuge in the
surrounding towns and came to look upon
Falmouth as impossible of again rising from
its ashes. It was largely with the help of new
immigrants, who had not caught the pessi-
mistic spirit engendered by twice fleeing for
their lives from the horror of Indian warfare,
that the place was reinhabited. It took twen-
ty-five years to overcome this spirit of fatal-
ism, and in 1716 a resettlement was under-
taken, which progressed so favorably that in
1719 the town of Falmouth was organized,
and from that time a steady and determined
growth was made.

( I ) It was under such conditions that
James Irish found Falmouth, in 1711, when
he arrived on the coast of Maine from his
home in England, looking for a home in the
new world. He joined the band of hardy
pioneers determined to rebuild a settlement
so favorably located for trade and commerce.
He was born in England, and was a young
single man when he arrived in Maine. He
needed companionship, and found his future
wife in the person of a young woman named
Elizabeth, her surname not being recorded.
They were married before 1723, and just as
the town of Falmouth, of which he was a
pioneer rebuilder, had sprung Phoenixlike
from its ashes, after they had been undis-
turbed a quarter of a century by a scattered,
indifferent and cowed refugee people. He
was probably a member of the church com-



munity gathered by Rev. Thomas Smith, who
organized in Falmouth the first church east
of the Saco river, March 7, 1727. His chil-
dren attended the first school under the pio-
neer schoolmaster, Robert Bayley, after its
organization in 1773. He took his wife and
children in 1738-40 to Gorham, a settlement
ten miles west of Falmouth, known as Nara-
gansett Number Seven, where a settlement
had been started in 1736. The place became
known as Gorhamtown, in honor of Captain
John Gorham, and had been granted to sol-
diers who served in King Philip's war in
1728. Wlien the Indians threatened to burn
the town, he fled from his farm to the garri-
son for greater safety, and when this danger
was over he returned to his farm, where he
died. Children of James and Elizabeth Irish,
born in Falmouth, Maine: i. John, April 13,
1724. 2. Miriam, September 13, 1725, mar-
ried Gamaliel Pate, August 7, 1743. 3. Jo-
seph, April 12, 1728, married Hannah Doane,
1733; made their home in Ikickfickl, Oxford
county, Maine. 4. Elizabeth, April 19, 1730.
3. Thomas. February 2"^, 1733. died vouug.
6. James (q. v.). 7. Thomas, January 29,
1737, married July 6, 1759, Deliverance Skil-
lings. 8. William, married July 18, 1765,
Mary McCallister, and died April 17, 1852.

(II) James (2), son of James (i) and
Elizabeth Irish, was born in Falmouth, Maine,
January 21, 1736. He was a soldier in the
revolution, enlisting in Captain Williams'
company. Colonel Phinney's regiment, and
after one year's service returned home. He
re-enlisted in 1777 as sergeant in Captain
Whitemore's company, Colonel Fogg's regi-
ment, and was stationed for some time at
Peekskill, on the Hudson river. He returned
home in 1778 to his farm, having taken ad-
vantage of the excellent farms offered to sol-
diers desiring to settle in the new districts in
Maine, where his father had been settled since
1740. and where he was brought up and
cleared his farm from a wilderness. He mar-
ried Mary Gorham, daughter of Captain John
Phinney, of Gorham. She was the first white
child born in the settlement at Narragansett
Number Seven. This marriage was made be-
fore 1757, and resulted in the birth of nine
children, all born before his departure to fight
the battles of his country in the American
revolution. Children: i. Stephen, March 24,
1737, married Anna Bangs, April i, 1779. 2.
William, March 12, 1759, married Sarah
March in 1781. 3. Martha, August 28, 1761,
died November 10, 1836; marriage published
to Stephen Whitney, October 28, 1780. 4.

Ebenezer, April 5, 1763, married Martha
Morton, January i, 1785, died January 7,
1831. '5. Obadiah, July 17, 1765, died April
17. 1832; marriage to Mary Deane published
January 7, 1790. 6. Mary, June 24, 1767,
died March 6, 1846; married Timothy Bacon,
February 19, 1798. 7. Patience, January 31,
1770, married John Davis, April 16, 1789,
died December 31, 1854. 8. Samuel, April 8,
1772; he died September 25, 1825, and his
widow August, 1858. 9. James (q. v.).

(Ill) James (3), youngest child of James
(2) and Mary Gorham (Phinney) Irish, was
born in Gorham, Maine, August 18, 1776. He
received a good school training, and grew up
to be a useful and influential man, his reputa-
tion extending to all parts of the state, and
his military career to the entire country. He
was a selectman of the town of Gorham in
1820 and 1829; state senator in the general
court of Massachusetts in 1819-20, and a
delegate from Gorham to the convention that
met in Portland in 1820 to frame and adopt a
constitution for the state of Maine. He was
the first representative elected from the town
of Gorham to the first legislature of the state
of Maine that met in Falmouth May 21, 1820,
and adjourned June 28, 1820. after a session
of thirty-nine days. Being a professional sur-
veyor, he was employed by the state in defin-
ing the bounds of the public lands and divid-
ing the same into townships and lots prepara-
tory to inviting settlement. After the death,
in 1822, of Colonel Lewis, surveyor-general
of the state 1820-22, he was appointed his
successor by Governor Albion K. Parris. and
in 1824 Governor Parris appointed him to the
newly created office of land agent, which
office he held up to 1828. He was also one of
the three commissioners appointed from the
state of Maine to determine the northwestern
boundary between the United States and the
Dominion of Canada. In 1846, when the York
and Cumberland railroad was chartered by
the State of Maine, he selected the route for
the road and made the preliminary, as well as
the final surveys. I'pon the meeting of the
directors of the corporation, he was made
clerk of the governing body of the road, and
was by reason of his superior knowledge
largely instrumental in building, equipping and
maintaining this new undertaking.

His position in the military organization of
the District of Maine, while under the gov-
ernment of the commonwealth of Massachu-
setts, gave him high rank in the military or-
ganization, and he was commissioned briga-
dier-general of the state militia. In 1814,



when Portland was threatened by the ad-
vance on the coast of the British navy. Gen-
eral Irish was refused permission by his su-
perior officer to call out the troops, but upon
his own responsibility, backed by the popular
sentiment of the town, he called out the en-
tire brigade, and in thirty-six hours had 25,-
000 men under arms and ready for the de-
fence of the endangered town. For this act
he was later court-martialed, but was honor-
ably discharged.

After the war of 1812 he became inter-
ested in manufacturing interests, and in 1824
he leased a small tannery and out of it he
evolved a large and successful business in the
preparation of leather to meet the increasing
demand of the boot and shoe manufacturers of
New England. He also established a starch
factory and a carpet factory. From 1845 to
1849 he held the office of postmaster of Gor-
ham, Maine, under appointment by President
James K. Polk, which appointment and
service determines his political affiliations.

He married, September 2, 1798, Rebecca,
daughter of Lieutenant Silas Chadbourne, a
soldier of the American revolution. She was
born April 9. 1780, and became the mother of
his thirteen children. She died October 5,
1831, and General Irish married (second)
October 15, 1832, Louisa Mason, a native of
Massachusetts, born August 5, 1789, and by
this marriage he had no issue. His first home
was on the farm of his father on the "Flaggy
Meadow Road." which property he sold in
1810 to Seth Herssey and then purchased the
farm in the "Blake Neighborhood," formerly
owned by Joseph Phinney. In 1826 he sold
this farm and purchased a three-story brick
house on the west corner of Main and Water
streets, Gorham, which was destroyed by fire
some time after his death. General Irish died
in Gorham. Maine, June 30, 1863, aged
eighty-seven years, and his widow survived
him and died in Hallowell, Maine, October 3,
1881, at over ninety years of age. Children
of General James and Rebecca (Chadbourne)
Irish, born in Gorham, Maine: i. Sophronia,
September 5, 1799, died March 31, 1886; mar-
ried (first) November 28, 1821, Henry Frost,
(second) September 23, 1829, John Wingate,
of Buxton, Maine. 2. Mary G., July 3, 1801,
died October 31, 1856; married, November 26,
1822, Peter Paine, of Standish, Maine. 3.
Isaac Chadbourne, November 29, 1803, mar-
ried September 5. 1830, Maria March. 4.
Abigail, August 14, 1806: married December
15, 1830, Cornelius Waters. 3. Martha. July
IS, 1808; married. November 21, 1833, Bryce

IM. Edwards. 6. Adeline, September 26,
1810; married, December 6, 1832, Dr. WilHam
Marrett, of Westbrook, Maine. 7. Francis O.,
September 22, 1812; married, January 11,
1846, Caroline E. Atwood, born in Worcester,
Massachusetts, who died May 17, 1866, and
he died in Brooklyn, New York, December
16, 1894. 8. Marshall, September 9, 1814;
married (first) October 16, 1846, Martha
Fogg; (second) December 19, 1877, Mary F.
McLellan. 9. James, June 9, 1816, died
young. 10. Rebecca C, September 21, 1817;
married September 21, 1846, Lyndon Oak, of
Garland, Maine; she died February 24, 1902.
II. Elizabeth, July 29, 1819; married, De-
cember I, 1841, John McArthur, of Brooks,
Maine, and died in Philadelphia, Pennsyl-
vania, lulv I, 1896. 12. fames H., March 11,

1823, died Mav 18, 1846. n. Thaddeus P.

( I\ ) Thaddeus P., youngest child of Gen-
eral James and Rebecca (Chadbourne) Irish,
was born at Gorham, Maine, November 25,

1824. He was educated at Gorham Acad-
emy, and as a boy entered the employ of ]\Ic-
Arthur & Brooks ; after a time removed to
Garland, Maine, where he engaged in the
manufacture of boots, the firm being Clark
& Company ; the work at this time was all
done by hand. He remained here until 1868,
when on account of his wife's health he sold
out, and engaged with his brother Marshall
in the carpet manufacturing business in Gor-
ham, and continuing until he received an ap-
pointment as mail agent on the Portland &
Rochester railroad, in which position he re-
mained till 1886, when he resigned, and re-
moving to Somerville, Massachusetts, built a
house, where he has since resided, living re-
tired. He is the only one living of thirteen
children, and is now (1908) eighty-six years
of age. He has taken a prominent part in
the Congregational church since his early
youth, and while a resident of Gorham took
an active part in all of its affairs, and is at
the present time a member of the Broadway
Congregational Church, of Somerville. In
1865 he was for some six months connected
with the Christian Commission in Virginia.
He erected a house on the corner of i'lain
and Water streets, on the ruins of the brick
house formerly occupied by his father, Gen-
eral Irish, and which had subsequently burned.

He married, November 29, 1848, Ellen A.,
daughter of Josiah Davis, of Standish, Maine,
born February 14, 1827. She became the
mother of three children, and died October
20, 1869. He married (second) Lucy Jane



Rice, November 23, 1870: she was born
April 6, 18^0, and died without issue, May
6, 1900. Children of Thaddeus P. and Ellen
A. (Davis) Irish, born in Garland, Penob-
scot countv, Maine: i. Elizabeth R., Septem-
ber 8, 1849, died March 6, 1865. 2. James
H., November 24, 1852: married, Novem-
ber 25, 1880. Junia H. Sanborn, born in
Rochester, New Hampshire. October 23, 1857:
children: i. Philip James, born December 11,
1881 ; ii. Forest O'Neil, January 8, 1885: iii.
Hazel Marguerite, April 2, 1886: iv. Chester
King, August 28, 1887, died December 4,
1887; V. James Hobbs, January 19, 1889; vi.
Ellen Davis, July i, 1890, died February 21,
1892; vii. Christine, November 21, 1891 ; viii.
Robert Jasper, December 11, 1897. 3. Fred
Davis, born April 10, 1857, see forward.

(V) Fred Davis, son of Thaddeus P. and
Ellen A. (Davis) Irish, was a resident of
Boston, Massachusetts, with office at 212
Summer street. He was educated in the Gor-
ham public schools, graduating from the high
school in 1875. He then entered the book ,
and stationery business with the firm of
Dresser, McLelland & Co., of Portland, and
remained till 1881, when because of poor
health he resigned and went to Mexico for
six months. Returning, he entered the em-
ploy of Estes & Murray, of Boston, as travel-
ing salesman and general utility man. In
1893 he was elected treasurer of the Briggs
Piano Company. He retired from that posi-
tion in 1896, engaging with Lee & Shepherd,
and remaining till 1901, then engaging with
Dana, Estes & Co., remaining till 1907, when
because of ill health he resigned. In 1908 he
became connected with the firm of H. AI.
Cauldwell Co., where he still remains. He is
a member of the Pine Tree Club, and was its
first assistant secretary ; and the State of
Maine Club, of Somerville. Like his father,
he is a Republican.

Colonel John Milton, of Port-
ADAMS land, Maine, second son of Na-
than and Susan (Merrill)
Adams, was born in Rum ford, O.xford
county. Maine, September 22, 1819, died in
Portland, Maine, October 29, 1897. He
came of the well-known Adams family. His
line of ancestry being clearly traced to ( i )
William Adams, who came to New England
in 1638, living first in Cambridge, and set-
tling in Ipswich in 1640. He was selectman
in 1649, and from his will, which was proved
in Ipswich court, March 25, 1662, was a

man of property and position in that part of
ancient Ipswich called "the Hamlet."

(II) Nathaniel, his son, is spoken of in
the early records with the honorary title
"Mr.." and his tombstone is still to be seen
in the old Ipswich burying ground, bearing
the following inscription :

.Mr. Nathaniel Addams died Apr. ye H — 1715

In ye 74 year of his age.

Now hes gon to eternall rest

God will him safely keep

Although hes burled In ye dust

In Je.=:us he doih ^^leep

you his children that are left

1 pray let some be found
That do endeavor to make good
Your foregone leaders ground
Grave saint behind that cannot find
Thy old love night or morn

Pray look above for there's your love
Singing with ye first born."

(III) Thomas, (IV) Thomas, (V) Eze-
keil were influential citizens of Ipswich.

(VI) Nathan, born December i, 1757, be-
came a resident cff Andover, Massachusetts,
and served in the revolution as lieutenant in
a company from Andover. He removed to
Andover, Maine, of which he was one of the
grantees and proprietors. In 1803 he bought
a valuable tract of land in Rumford, Maine,
which became one of the most prosperous
farms on the Ellis river. He died in 183 1: at
the age of seventy-four. He married, De-
cember I, 1785, Betsey, daughter of Eben
Poor, of Andover, Maine, and direct de-
scendant of Daniel Poore, who came from
England in the "Bevis," 1638.

(\TI) Nathan, his oldest son, was born
January 28, 1788, and March 17, 1817, was
married to Susan, daughter of Ezekiel Mer-
rill and Sarah (Emery) Alerrill. She was
the first white child born in Andover, Maine,
a cousin of Stephen Emery, attorney-general
of Maine in 1839-40, and a woman of un-
usual beauty of face and character. They
lived on the homestead in Rumford, of which
for many years before his father's death he
had entire charge. His death was the result
of a fall, January 26, 1830. Their children
were: l. Alilton, died young. 2. John Mil-
ton. 3. Charles. 4. Nathan Emery. 5. Su-
san Merrill. 6. Henry Smith.

(VIII) John Milton, second son, and sub-
ject of this sketch, was ten years old when
he was left fatherless. During the next five
years he proved his mother's able assistant
in managing the large farm. His early edu-
cation was gained in the common schools, and
from a relative who was a student at Bow-
doin. At the age of fifteen he abandoned the
idea of going to college, mainly because two
vears of Greek were required. He attended



/c ^y^^^




school at Turner, and two years at Bethel
and Bridgton academies, and at seventeen
began to teach, still pursuing his studies. In
1838 he \oIunteered in the Aroostook war, as
it was called, and was made orderly sergeant
in Captain John T. Hall's Oxford County
company. The company was discharged af-
ter only one month's service. At nineteen
he taught in an academy at New Market,
on the eastern shore of Maryland. The fa-
cilities for travel were few then, and it was
a hard six days' journey from his home in
Rumford. He taught there two years most
successfully, when the death of a brother
compelled his return home. He then entered
Gorham Seminary, taking, except for Greek,
the studies of a college course. Graduating
two years later, he entered St. Hyacinthe Col-
lege, Canada, his special purpose being to
gain a thorough knowledge of the French
language. The president of the college se-
cured board for him in the famous Papineau
family, which was wealthy and cultured, ad-
mitting him to a society where French was
spoken in its purity.

Graduating from St. Hyacinthe, he went
to Portland, Maine, and in the spring of
1844 entered the office of Fessenden & Du-
blois, becoming a member of the household
of William Pitt Fessenden. He pursued his
law studies successfully, teaching French
meanwhile in Master Packard's school, and
in 1846 was admitted to the bar. He opened
an office in Portland and as he had while a
student attended to the firm's business in the
lower courts, found no difficulty in establish-
ing himself. At the end of three years he
entered into law partnership with Hon. John
A. Poor, the promoter of the Atlantic and
St. Lawrence — now the Grand Trunk — rail-
road, in which he was deeply interested. The
following year, 1850-51, he traveled exten-
sively in Europe, acting as correspondent of
the Nczu York Railroad Journal, writing
chiefly of the railroad systems of Europe and
the political outlook of the period. In 1855
he edited The Argus, while its editor, Hon.
John Appleton, was serving as secretary of
legation at London. In 1856 he was appointed
by Governor Wells reporter of decisions, and
published volumes xli and xlii of the Maine
Reports. About this time he formed a law
partnership with Nathan Clifford, which was
ver)' congenial to both parties, and which
continued until Mr. Clifford was appointed to
the Lnited States supreme bench.

The Argus, which was founded in 1803 to
support the administration of Thomas Jef-

ferson, was at this time without an editor,
and Mr. Adams was unanimously chosen by
the eight proprietors to fill the position, but
only after nnich persuasion was he induced
to accept, so strong was his preference for
the law, in which he had become very suc-
cessful. He took charge of The Argus in
May, 1857, and in 1866 became sole owner,
and continued editor and owner till 1890,
when he retired from the active management,
retaining controlling interest, however, till his
death in 1897. For nearly forty years his
strong and not-to-be-mistaken editorials
guided its policy, for the personality of its
editor was a strong factor in its success. His
conception of its place in public service was
high, and he never used it to further his own
ambitions. He was a politician only in the
sense that he sought the highest good of the
public, through the machinery of politics,
placing measures above men, and right above
both. He held the respect and esteem of his
political opponents, as well as his party asso-
ciates, and his counsels held weight with his
party both in Washington and the West. His
ready pen, his lucid exposition of facts, and
his prompt and unreserved opinions, won for
him the confidence of his reader?, and he
proved his skill as manager by making The
Argus, though Democratic, have the largest
circulation in the state.

Mr. Adams, though often solicited to take
office, almost invariably refused. He was a
member of the school board of Portland for
several years, and also served as superintend-
ent of schools. He was one of the originators
of the Maine Press Association, and an in-
terested member of the Maine Historical As-
sociation. He was appointed by Governor
Hubbard a member of his staff, with the rank
of lieutenant-colonel. He was a frequent dele-
gate to state and national conventions. He
was a member of the state legislature in 1877-
78, and served on the finance and legal af-
fairs committee at each session. The second
vear, nominated by his party for speaker of
the house, though failing election, he received
every Democratic vote. He was appointed a
visitor at the United States Military Academy
at West Point by President Cleveland.

Colonel Adams was a great student, and
did much of his work in his library, sur-
rounded by his books. He was a good con-
versationalist, and told in a delightful way of
the men he had met, and of the editors and
politicians with whom he had been more or
less connected. He found time to enjoy much
of outdoor life, and the several acres sur-



on grand jury 1636-37; on committee to di-
vide meadow grounds. He was a shipwright
by trade, and was part owner in a barque for
the colony, which was built under his super-
vision. In 1645 he was a freeman of Nawsett,
now Eastham, and in 1643 was on a list of
those able to bear arms. In 1650 he was
deputy to the general court, and afterwards;
was town treasurer for Eastham from 1646
to 1665, and selectman for two years. In
1657 he was licensed as a merchant in East-
ham. He agreed to furnish a man and horse
at his own expense for the troop of horse
from Eastham. His will was dated October
19, 1677, and proved March 5, 1677-78. He
married Lvdia, daughter of Robert Hicks,
who came over in the "Anne" in 1623; (sec-
ond) Rebecca . Child of first wife:

I. John, married January 23, 1660, Hannah
Smalley. Children of second wife : 2. Lieu-
tenant Joshua, born at Plymouth, 1637; mar-
ried December i, 1669, Hannah Scudder;
died 1709. 3. Rebecca, married October 16,
1654, Captain Jonathan Sparrow. 4. Sarah,
married, 1656, Captain Thomas Howes. 5.
Captain Jonathan, born 1640; mentioned be-
low. 6. Lydia, married (first) December 24,
1661, Benjamin Higgins. 7. Hannah, married
April 30, 1662, John Doane. 8. Bethia, born
May 28, 1650; married Gershom Hall; died
October 15, 1696. 9. Apphia, born October
15, 1651 ; married December 28, 1670, John
Knowles, (second) Stephen .A.twood. 10.
Mercy, born October 15, 165 1 (twin) ; mar-
ried December 28, 1670, Stephen Merrick.

(II) Captain Jonathan, son of Edward
Bangs, was born at Plymouth in 1640. He
was selectman of Eastham three years deputy
to the general court several years ; also town
treasurer and captain of militia. He removed
to Brewster about 1694, and settled on the
land inherited from his father, lying between
Sautucket river and Namskeket. In 1680,
on an agreement about land boundaries, he
used as a seal the crest of the Bangs family
of England, mentioned above. He married
(first) July 16, 1664, Mary, daughter of Cap-
tain Samuel and Thomasine (Lumpkin)
Mayo, and granddaughter of Rev. John Mayo,
of Boston, Barnstable and Yarmouth. She
was baptized at Barnstable, February 3, 1649-
50, and died January 26, 171 1, at Brewster.

He married (second) Sarah , who died

June, 1719, aged seventy-eight. He married
(third) in 1720, Mrs. Ruth (Cole) Young, of
Eastham. daughter of Daniel Cole. Children,
born at Eastham, all by first wife: i. Captain
Edward, born September 30, 1665; mentioned

Online LibraryGeorge Thomas LittleGenealogical and family history of the state of Maine; (Volume 3) → online text (page 99 of 128)