J. W. (John Wesley) Hanson.

History of Gardiner, Pittston and West Gardiner, with a sketch of the Kennebec Indians, & New Plymouth purchase, comprising historical matter from 1602 to 1852; with genealogical sketches of many families online

. (page 1 of 27)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

v-^



«=»-^






V \



^y



-» ■««»^



^



'lis-"



^:> -^^



G-a.-^J v^e







/




ilT Foweri S- en Iifh Jiuu ?



EPISCOPAL CHLmCET,



S s Jonpsj/ei,



HISTORY



OF



G AUDINEK ,

PITTSTON AND WEST GARDINER

WITH A SKETCH OF THE

KENNEBEC INDIANS, & NEW PLYMOUTH PURCHASE,

COMPRISING HISTORICAL MATTER FROM

1602tol852;

WITH GENEALOGICAL SKETCHES OF MANY FAMILIES.



By J. W. HANSON,

Author of " History of Norridgewock and Canaan, Me. T
" History of Danvers, MaoS.^o , S^. ^:c.



' ^,'';



« e » • • , •



? ' > i 5 ^ ' ) J , , )






'3' J >



. GARDINER:

/ PUBLISHED BY WILLIAM PALMER.



1852.



Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1852, by

J. W. Hanson,
in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Maine.




^ Lf~l4-i



. i\ A r. i o w LL L :

M -A ;s ;T, ?: ,R' F V 9 M I T H & CO.



P .H )i »:■ f ?•: R d

I tec 1- '

, ■» c t "

; c , , , c '■ I



PREFACE



But little need be said of this volume by way of
introduction. Its character will be developed to
every one who peruses its contents. It has been
the constant effort of the compiler to collect and
arrange all the facts he could obtain from every
known source, having any connection with the
history of the towns of which he has treated, and
he believes, and feels ready to say, that he knows
of no important, uninvidious fact, Avhich he has not
recorded. If there are errors they are slight, and
are such as necessarily attach to a work involving
so many dates. His constant effort has been to
crowd and compress his facts into the least possible
space ; so that if the reader looks for any felicities
of diction, he will be disappointed. He will only
behold a plain, unvarnished account of literal facts.

The books and persons to whom the compiler has
been indebted for facts, will be found in the foot notes
attached to the text, and the reader can consult the
book or person, if he wishes to verify any statement
concerning which he has doubt. Besides those, the
compiler has been under the greatest obligations to
Moses Springer, Esq., Hon. Edward Swan, Hon.



IV PREFACE.

Robert H. Gardiner, (who not only furnished books,
but valuable manuscript matter.) John Webb, late
City Clerk, Alphonso H. Clark, Henry Dearborn,
Peter Grant, Adjutant Gen. of Maine, Selectmen
and Town Clerk of West Gardiner, Hon. David
Bronson and E. S. J. Neally of Bath, and to that far
larger number of his fellow citizens who have sup-
plied him with papers, hints, and means of informa-
tion, and manifested constant and great cordiality in
advancing the labor in which he has been engaged.

It will be difficult for any one whose eyes shall
glance over these pages, to realize the vast amount
of constant, plodding research and toil, invested in
this volume, involving hundreds of miles of travel,
the reading of many volumes of books, the consulta-
tion of thousands of pages of good, bad and in-
different manuscript, and of many oblivious octo-
genarians, and then, the additional labor of sifting,
assorting, collating and reconciling. Besides this,
the greatest conceivable apathy, and indifference, and
ignorance prevailed, even among those who were
born and who had grown gray, and wise in other
matters, on the soil. With all these obstacles before
him, the compiler persevered, and he believes his
volume is correct as far as it goes, and that it con-
tains as much substantial information as can be well
crowded into the same space. He hopes his fellow
citizens will encourage his effort by buying his
book, and being pleased with it.



INDEX



Abenaques, or Abnakis, localities of,

*' signification of,

** tribes of,

*• description of,

«* in 1615, number of,

** depredations of,

" fate of,

«* in the Revolution,

" cMefs,
Army worm,

Agry, Thomas and family,
Allen family,
Arnold's Expedition,
Alterations in Town lines,
Alewiyes, very plenty, .
Almanac, Maine Farmers',
Associations, Incorporations, &c.
Attorneys, ....
Almshouse,

Brown, Alexander's death in Gardiner,

'• •' settlement in "

Berr)^ family,
Bailey family.
Bacon, William
Burns, Joseph
B^-Tam family,
Brown farm,
Barker family,
Blanchard family,
Bradstreet family,
Bickford, Moses
Brick kiln,

Bowman's Point, sketch of,
Bridge, Swan Island, opposed
Born-drunk Davis,
Burns, William
Bridge, eifort for,
Bailey, Rev. Jacob
Baptists, Calvinistic,

1*=



PAGE.

13, 17
U
14

14, 15
23
26
26
27
27
85
87

103, 104
113, 117.
179
186
297
322
334
336

36
56

68, 78, 79, 80, 81
72, 73, 106
. 81
82
. 155, 156
.85
110, 111, 156
. 128
, 131
82, 83
. 155
166, 167, 168, 204
176, 200, 201
. 204
. 213
. 214
. 245
275, 276, 277



VI



INDEX.



Books published,

Buildings, when built, .

Cabbassa Indians, Telics of,

" " origin of name,

« " " of tribe,

« »• in 1807-8,

•• skirmish at,

Call family, •

Charter of Wm. & Mary

Cabbassa Mill,

Colburn family,

Cox, James, .

Cooper family,

Clark family,

Clay famil)', .

Cold fever,

Common,

Cave, singular,

Cabbassa stream, power of, .
" " appearance of,

City officers, Gardiner,

Congregationalists, Pittston,
'* Gardiner,

College graduates.

Character of people,

Davis family,
Door family, .
Denny, John,
Denbow, Nathaniel,
Dunlap, James,
Dearborn family, .
Dunham family,
Deaths of aged people,
Daughters of Temperance,

Etechemins, .

Early Voyages to Maine,

*' ' " *<■ Kennebec,

Everson, William,
Embargo, action of the people on.
Eastern River,
Evans, Hon. Geo.
Ecclesiastical,

Episcopal parish, history of.
East Pittston, early.
Early Settlers,

Flitner, Zachariah, family,

Fuller family,

Freewill Baptists, first church,
" " second "

'« " third *' .



140-



296, 297

. 339

18

18, 19

19

19

. 25

. S3

. 37

47, 62

70, 71, 86

84

137

137

170

177

209

209

217

. 217

227, 228

263—266

266—271

. 335

3-1 1—2

61, 67
75
78
83, 86
127
144, 340
loS
—294
326



2.14,



291



13
29, 30
30, 1, 3, 4, 6
82, 83
. 176
. 1S5
. 207
. 245
245—256
336—339
. 339

82
. 133
. -271
. 272
. 273



INDEX.



Vll



.freewill Baptists, fourth cliurcli,

«♦ filth "
Freshets,
French Jesuits,
Fisheries of Kennebec,
Fort Richmond built,

" Cushnoc "

" Halifax "

Fitch, Benjamin, .
Flagg, James,
Farm, first,
Freemasons,
Franklin Bank,
Farmingdale,
Facts, No. of herein.

Grant, form of

" Plymouth,
Grants, Kennebec
" Dr. Gardiner's
" to settlers,
Gardiner, Dr.'s efforts,

" " character,

Gardiner, grant of area,
Grant to Vassal,

" " Dr. Gardiner,
Gardinerston, settlement of,
Great House, account of.
Game,

Glidden, Joseph
Gardiner (Gid.) family,
•' Dr. and family,
•• *' epitaph,

" <« will,

'♦ John
«< AVilliam
Grant family,
Gay family.
Gold digging,
Gardiner, R. H.
Gardiner, sketch of

" Act of incorporation,
" tax list, 1803,
" ofiicers of

appearance of in 1803,
old houses in
condition of in 1803,
city charter,
Gannet, Barzillai .
Graduates,
Gardiner, location of
soil, &c., of






u



15



46, 49,
46, 47, 54,



19,

197



PAGE.

. 274

. 275

9, 284, 285

22

37, 161

37, 38

42, 43

. 43

61, 63

. 78

155

. 322

. 326

. 340

. 340

49, 60

. 48

31, 40, 49

60, 68, 69

39, 47, 50

58, 59, 60

43, 45

. 45

. 45

. 47

. 61

62

. 75

. 78

. 83

87, 105

. 91

. 92

. 99

. 102

. 134

156, 157

168, 169

172, 173

. 195

196, 197

198, 199

. 199

. 199

. 199

. 203

213, 214

. 201

. 344

222, 214

215, 216



Vlll INDEX.








PAGE.


Gardiner, R. H.'s house, 220


" tax list for 1851, .






. 228, 238


« Bank, ....






. 344


" appearance of






. 218, 219


Hoskin's, Capt. death, .






. 34


Hancock's visit to Gardinerston, .






. 76


Haley, Martin ....






. 78


Hopkins, Peter ....






. 84


Hicks, Dr. Jonathan






. 86


Hazard, (slave,) ....






98, 99


Hallowell, Robert






. 171


Indian history, ....






. 13


** ideas of land titles, .






. 15


" localities,






. 17


♦* names and definitions,






20, 21


" conduct to vv^hites,






21, 28


*• sales of land "...






. 22, 34, 35


« insults to «'






. 23


*• wars, six,






. 24


*' troubles at Richmond,






. 24


" " " Merry Meeting Bay,






. 25


Industry, origin of name.






. 66


Indians in Gardinerston,






27, 112, 113


Insurance Co.,






. 341


Jenkins, Dennis, .....






. 84


Jackson family, .....






. 130


Jewett family, .....






137, 139, 158


Kennebec, origin of name,






. 16


** claim,






. 29


•' " extent of, .






32, 41


" " boundaries.






32, 33


Kerdoormeorp, (Brown's Farm,) .






. 36


Kennebec Company's efforts,






50, 44


" " character.






. 52-3, 38


Kenny, Paul and Stephen,






83, 86


Kennebec River, .....






. 185


" " opening and shutting, .






. 287, 288


Indians, character






. 14


" bridge, ....






. 340


Lincoln, County of, formed.






. 171


Louis Philip, ....






. 163


Lawrence, John and Joseph,






. 84


Law, William, .....






. 84


Loud, Jacob, ....






61, 63


Lawrence family, .....




{


32, 86, 106, 161


Lapham family,




«


. 138


Lyceum,







. 206


Mechanic's Association,






. 322


McCausland's family,






61, 62, 68, 69



INDEX.




IX


PAGE.


Marson, Abner, ...... 84


Moore family,




157, 158, 335


Meeting-house, Pittston,




171, 179


Maine, separation of from Mass., .




171, 176, 177, 203, 204


Military, War, &c.,




177, 204, 299-306


MeCausland, Ilenr^^




248


Methodists, East Pittston,






256


«' Gardiner,






260-263


" Pittston,






263


Norridgewocks, their depredationSj






24-5


" destruction of.






25


Natahnis, ....






27


Noble, John and Henry,






86


North, Maj. and family,






. 86, 87


North house.






87


New Mills, origin of.






133


Nahumkeag Island,






185


'< stream.






186


" pond, .






187


New Jerusalem Church,






278


Newspapers,






. 294-6


Odd FeUows, I. 0.,






326


" *' Literary Society,






323-4


Occurences,






289


Oaklands, ....






220


Oak Grove Cemetery,






. 212, 213, 336


Oldham family,






83


Oakman, Samuel,






86


O'Bluffskie, Frederic,






87


Officers, first town.






134


Philbrook famUy, .






. 61, 68


Prices, early






70, 127, 139


Population, in 1764,






76


" " 1800,






171


" table of,






290, 291


Pittston incorporated,






124


*' Act of incorporation.






. 124, 125, 126


Pitts, John, account of,






124


Pittston, name of, .






126


Plaisted family,






136


Pittston, early condition of,






145


" inhabitants in 1785,




146, 147, 148, 187


" " location of.




148, 149, 150, 153, 154


«« « of in 1787,




153


« - « '< 1789,






159


" i. u 1791^






160


« « " 1799,






166


" ** condition of in 1800,


171


" sketch of modern





*


174



INDEX.



Pittston tax list, 1803,

" parishes,

** description of

'* tax list, 1851,
Physicians,
Poor,

Polls, valuation, &c.,
Post-offices,
Publishments, early,

Queen of Sheba,

Richmond trading house,
Revolutionary troubles.
Revolution, efforts of Gardinerston
Revolutionary soldiers.
Refugees, act concerning, .
Roads,
Representatives,

Settlers, early, sufferings of

Sabbatis,

Settlers, early at Edgecomb,

Settlements on the Kennebec,

Squatters' rebellions,

Settlers, difficulties with

Settlement in Pittston, first

Shipping built,

Settlers, character of,
" difficulties of

Smith family,

Stackpole family,

Soper family,

Shaw family.

Springer family,

Swan family,

Stone family,

Statistics of Pittston in 1820,
" " " " 1850,

«« " Gardiner '• 1820,

«* " " " 1850,

SurjDlus Revenue, .

Schools,

Sochigones, location of.

Sons of Temperance,

Slaves in Gardiner,

Thomes, Mr.,
Tibbetts family,
Trees, wood, &c.
Taggart family,
Tarbox family,
Town petition,



in, 118
150, 155



30, 33,



119, 1
, 159, 1



34, 35,



PAGE.


. 174-


-176


176,


177


184,


185


. 188-


-194


. 202, 327-


-332


• •


206"


• •


291


306-


-307


308,


309


• •


159


• •


25


112,


118


20, 121, 133,


134


• «


122


■ •


138


71, 173, 176,


202


• •


150


24", 84,


128


. 2o


,27


• •


29


36, 37, 42, 51


I, 57


» •


51


» •


52


■ •


56


• •


38


■ •


70


• •


70


. 76


;, 77


» •


109


» •


128


* •


137


. 150, 151,


152


. 163, 164,


165


169,


170


i •


178


• •


188


205,


289


220,


221


• •


211


297,


299


■ • «


14





344





340


. 61


, 63


. 73


, 86


74, 75,


155


. 86,


110


107,


108





123



INDEX.




XI




PAGE.


Town records,


130


Traveling carriages, &c.


162, 211


Temperance,


178, 202-3, 206-7, 211


•' Societies,


. , 325


Town House,


. 179, 206, 207


'< officers, Pittston,


181-3


Taxes, Pittston,




183-4


Togus springs,




186


Tax for support of Gospel,




200


Taxes, Gardiner,




224


Town officers, Gardiner,




225-7


Temple of Honor, .




326


Universalists,




. 279—81


Vessels built.


309-322


Votes for Governor,


179, 180, 222, 223


" " President,


181, 224:


Wampum, ...


31


Weather, . . 62, 109, 127-8,


139, loo, lo3, 163, 282-6


Winslow family, .


61-7


Winter family.






Warren family,




84


West Gardiner settled,




127


Wakefield family,




158


Worromontogus bridge.




177


" river.




186


West Gardiner, incorporation, &c.,




239


" " officers,




>240


« « Taxes, &c.


• V •


. 240-4


Wawenocs, location of,




14


Washingtonians, . . .




323


Washingtons, Martha,




327


Young family.




132






PLATES.*



1 Episcopal Church, . • • ronisp\e^^

2 Old Post-office, . • • * * 220

3 R. H. Gardiner's House, * * ' 262

4 Methodist Church, • • - ' * ^^.^

5 Congregational Church, • • * ^^^

6 Universalist Church, . • * *



* The churches .vera drawn by B. S. Jones, of ^^^tston and the
rP.^dence of R H. Gardiner was daguerreotyped by Mr. C. T.
Rogers and it oU post-office by Mr. John Curran.



ERRATA.
n'samuel and Abigail Smith, were children of James and
SMas^Sl^fiSr^o;^^ commence the Une above.

298, 7th line from ^^"^^f^Vhitmarread Whittemore.
305, 14th line from top, ^^/^^ ^^J^^^^ ^^^^ Woberton.
312, 1st line from bottom, foi AN ol^erlon,



HISTORY



O F



GARDINER AND PITTSTON



CHAPTER I.



INDIAN' HISTORY.



When the messengers of European civilization
first furled their white sails on the forest-fringed
shores of, America, numerous tribes of dusky Indians
roamed our forests, and pursued therein the preca-
rious habits of savage life. Wherever fish and game
were plentiest, they were most numerous, enjoying
a peaceful existence with the exception of occasional
short, and bloody feuds. They had their own coun-
tries, the boundaries of which were well understood
by the different tribes, and were never overstepped
unless for the purpose of insult by some tribe bent
on war.

The Abenakies, Abenaques or Abnakis and the
Etechemins, owned and occupied the present limits of
Maine. The Etechemins dwelt from the Penobscot,
eastward, and the Abnakis from New Hampshire to
the Penobscot. Sometimes the name was called
Wapanachki, or Yfabanaki ; but however the word
was pronounced, the name signified Eastlauders. or

2



14 INDIAN HISTORY.

Eastern men,* from Wahanio^ East, and aski^ land.
This great nation was divided into fonr smaller
tribes: — the Sokokis or Sochigones, on the Saco ,• the
Anasagunticooks, on the Androscoggin ; the Wawe-
nocs, east of Merry-meeting Bay, and the Canibas,
or Kennebecs, from Merry-meeting Bay to Moosehead
Lake, on both sides of the river. The Kennebecs
were subdivided into the Norridgewogs, who dwplt
at Norridgewock ; the Taconnets, at Waterville ; the
Cushnocs, at Augnsta, etc. These small tribes were
all Kennebecs, and the Kennebecs, Sokokis, etc.
were all Abnakis. They spake the same tongue
with slightly differing dialects, and were essentially,
in all great enterprises, one people, l^hns an Indian
living at Augusta Avas of the Cushnoc clan, the
Kennebec tribe, and the Abnaki nation.

The Kennebecs were very numerous when the
whites first made their acquaintance.t The different
clans all paid homage, or political deference to the
great chief, or bashaba, who usually resided on Swan
Island,! which seems to have been the head-quarters
of the Abnakis. Sabastian Rale, the French Jesuit
Missionary, who resided among the Eastern Indians
many years, thus describes their manners and ap-
pearance : ^^ —

Their cabins are made b}^ planting a centre pole,
and covering with bark ; the fire is built in the
middle, on the ground, and for beds and chairs, they
spread mats on the earth, made of reeds. The men
dress in the skins of animals, or in loose robes of
red or blue cloth ; and the women wear mantles
reaching to the middle of the leg, very gracefully
arranged, with light coverings thrown over the head,



* Heckewelcler's Hist. Ace. p. 107. Also, Gookin and Prince.
1 Kendall's Travels, p. 61.

t Hubbard's New Eng. p. 31.

X Williamson's Hist. Me. Vol. II. p. 4. § Lettres Edifiantes.



INDIAN HISTORY. 15



\



and falling to the feet, and stockings from the knee
to the ancle. Their moccasins are of deerskin. In
the winter they wear snowshoes, without which
they cannot snhsist. With them they are able to
overtake the swiftest animals. They are tall, power-
ful, and active, w^ith teeth whiter than ivory. Their
only ornaments are beads, made of shell, white and
black, so arranged in belts, and the like, as to repre-
sent different figures with great beauty. Their
children are regarded with the greatest affection, and
the utmost respect is manifested toward the aged.
Their skill with the bow is great ; even children can
shoot with astonishing accuracy.

They eat with great irregularity ; feasting on the
best one day, and famishing the next. Tobacco is
used by all, and esteemed the greatest luxury. They
are less barbarous than any other tribe.

When they fight, they divide their bands into
small companies of five men, each with knife in one
hand, and tomahawk in the other ; and they are thus
very formidable. When they enter the possessions
of an enemy, they scour the country in small bands,
and inspire the greatest dread, by attacking all quar-
ters at once.

Rale informs us that the Kennebecs understood
making candles, and that with twenty-four pounds
of bayberry wax, and twenty-four pounds of tallow,
they would make one hundred candles, each one
foot long.

These Indians owned the soil in common.* They
held as "tenants in a state of nature." Any Abnaki
had a right to use any land belonging to the Abnaki
nation. They could not comprehend how one per-
son could own the soil. Each native possessed an
undivided portion of the territory of his tribe. Thus



* Statement of Kennebec Claims, p. 21.



16 INDIAN HISTORY.

all sales made by the sachems were made with tliis
understanding, never denied by an Indian, — that
they sold only what they themselves possessed, —
the right to hunt and fish and occupy with others.
When a purchaser died, his right reverted to the
tribe. This explains subsequent troubles. The
whites purchased, and supposed that they possessed
a fee simple title, which the red man could not un-
derstand, and he was forced to yield to what he felt
was injustice.

In the year 1660 there was an Indian Sagamore
named Kennebis,* and it has been conjectured that
he was one of a long line, for whom the river Ken-
nebec was named. f In my History of Norridge-
wockj may be found the following supposed "origin
of the name : — " It is highly probable that a Sachem
named Kennebis, from some other tribe, left his own
people out of dissatisfaction, and folloAved by his
family and a few others, settled in the wilds of Maine.
From him and his followers proceeded the Kennebec
tribe, and the Kennebis of Indian history was doubt-
less a descendant of the first Kennebis. History is
silent, however, and conjecture is our only au-
thority."

The Abnakis, or to give the word a free transla-
tion, the Down-easters, occupied the best portion of
Maine, and the Kennebecs possessed the best part of
the country of the Abnakis. They were bold and
brave, strongly attached to native soil, and peaceable
when unmolested. The wigwams of their happy
villages were to be seen wherever salmon and shad
abounded, and wild game was plenty. All along
the slopes and savannahs of the beautiful Kennebec
their hunting grounds extended, and the quiet graves



* "Williamson's Hist. Mc.

t Drake's Book Indians, Book III. Ch. VIL

j Hanson's Hist. Norridgewock, &c., p. 15.



INDIAN HISTORY. 17

of their fathers chistered around the mouth of each
tributary to their beloved river. '" Here lived and
loved another race of beings." The silent river as
it rolled its constant journey to the sea, bore on its
bosom some dark-eyed Indian maid in her light
shallop, or a company of hunters or warriors as they
paddled their white canoes across its blue surface.
Where stands the busy mill, then drank the antlered
moose. Where spreads the wide green intervale,
then wrought the busy beaver. Where now is heard
the locomotive's scream, the steamboat wheel, then
howled the wolf, then leaped the golden salmon,
then fled the caribou. The all-beholding sun as he
gazed on our splendid stream, saw only nature and
her votaries.'*

The mouths of the Cabbassa-contee and the Nahum-
keag were two of their favorite resorts, at an early
date, though the irruption of the Avhites soon drove
them farther up the river. As early as 1614, when
Capt. John Smith visited the river, before any white
men, Nahumkeag was a noted place. Though his
observation was limited, and his means of knowledge
slight, yet he points out localities, and repeats names
suthciently definite. He says : f — " The principal
habitations I saw at Northward, was Penobscot, who
are in wars with their next northerly neighbors.
Southerly up the rivers, and along the coast, we
found Mecadacut, Segocket, Pemaquid, Nnscoiicus,
Sagadahock, Satquin, Aumaughcawgen and Ken-
EBECA. To those belong the countries and people of
Segotago, Pauhunlanuck, Pocopassum, Taughtanaka-
gnet, VYabigganus, Nassaque, Masherosqueck, Waw-
rigwick, Moshoquen,, Waccogo, Pasheranack, &c.
To these are allied in confederacy the countries of



* Hist, of Norriclgewock & Canaan.
+ 3 CoU. Mass. Hist. Soc. p. 21, 22.

2*



18 INDIAN HISTORY.

Aucocisco, Accomenticus, Passataquack, Augawoam
and Naemkeek, all these, for anything I could per-
ceive, differ little in language or anything," etc.
There can be little doubt that the Nahumkeas^s were
at that time and previously a flourishing clan of the
Kennebecs. In the neighborhood of the Cabbassa-
contee and Nahumkeag, they hunted the trout, the
salmon, the moose, the caribou, deer, bear, rabbit,
loupcervier, martin, fox and beaver. Here were group-
ed their wigwams and birchen canoes. Here the
council fire Avas lighted, here the warwhoop was
heard. "Gazing on the same sun that smiles on us,
the Indian hunter pursued the panting deer ; looking
on the same moon that rolls above us, the Indian
lover wooed his dusky mate."

There are evidences that the region of Cabbossa
Avas a favorite home of the red men. Their bones,
arrovv^s, kettles, and other implements and utensils of
war and peace, have been exhumed. When Daniel
Nutting, Esq. erected his house, m the year 1829, he
found in the earth composing a large knoll, numbers
of arrow-heads, etc., some of which are now deposit-
ed in the cabinet in Brunswick.* The soil of Pitts-
ton village, and especially that in the immediate
neighborhood of the Methodist church, seems to
have been an Indian burial place. Paint, arrows,
kettles, bones, and other relics have been found in