Joseph Anderson.

The town and city of Waterbury, Connecticut, from the aboriginal period to the year eighteen hundred and ninety-five (Volume 4) online

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ApHE TOWN AND CITY OF WATERBURY,
-i CONNECTICUT, FROM THE ABORIGINAL
PERIOD TO THE YEAR EIGHTEEN HUNDRED
AND NINETYT^TVE.



EDITED BY JOSEPH ANDERSON, D. D.



VOLUME I.
BY SARAH J. PRICHARD AND OTHERS.



NEW HAVEN :
THE PRICE & LEE COMPANY.

1896.



no

V\.



Enlered, atcordini; 1" Act ul Congress, in the year i8g6

Bv THE PRICE & LEE COMPANY,

In the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washingtc




PREFACE.

THE publication of a new History of Waterbury was first
seriously considered by the firm of Price, Lee cK: Co. m the
summer of 18S7. The undersigned was invited at that time
to take in hand the preparation of such a work, but felt ciim]ielled
to decline the task. He - ave to the publishers, however, the
names of two writers whom he regarded as well fitted for the
work, and in September the following' notice appeared in the public
prints: "Price, Lee & Co. of New Haven announce that their His-
torv of Waterbury is in course of preparation, — the first hundred /
years in charge of Miss Sarah J. Prichard, and the last hundred
years in charge of Miss Anna L. Ward." More than a year after
this (on November tO, 1888) the firm issued a circular, in whicli,
after referring to the publication of Bronson's History in 185S and
to the remarkable development of Waterbury since then, and
expressing the conviction that the time had come for a new history
of the town and city, they announced that arrangements had been
completed for the preparation of such a work, and solicited the
cooperation of those interested in the subject. In addition to Miss
Prichard and .Miss Ward, "the Rev. Dr. Joseph Anderson, the
Hon. F. J. Kingsbury and Mr. H. F. Bassctt " were mentioned as
having been engaged to contribute chapters upon special topics
or periods. From that time until now the work has been going
forward with but little interruption, and in addition to those already
mentioned several other writers have been enlisted, as indicated
in the table of contents.

Up to the date of the issue of the circular just referred to, but
little had been done toward putting on record the history of Water-
bury. Interesting references to the town had oeeasionally been
made by the early writers, as for example by President Timothy
Dwight in his "Travels in New England and New York"; Barber
in his " Historical Collections," in 1836., had devoted to it an enter-
taining chapter (prepai-ed, by the way, by Judge Bennet Bronson);
Charles Burton had published in the iVat/nmj/ J/ax^azi/ir. in iH-,-;, his
articles on the "Valley of the Naugatuck," two of them relating
to Waterbury; Orcutt had issued in 1875 his " History of Woleott,"
covering an important section of the old town: biographies of
Waterbury men had appeared in such works as the "Biographical



iv PREFACE.

Encyclopedia of Connecticiit and Rhode Island," and the "Repre-
sentative Manufacturers of New England," and in the Leaven-
worth, the Benedict, the Terry and the Hoadley genealogies;
special subjects had been touched upon in such books or pamphlets
as those of Chauncey Jerome and Henry Terry on clock making,
and those by Messrs. Kingsbury and Anderson enumerated on
pages 959-962 of our second volume; the Waterbury Almanac, begun
in 1853, had garnered from year to year, so long as its issue con-
tinued, the facts not only of the passing time but of the earlier
days; the newspapers, for nearly half a century, had been making
their daily or weekly record, and — most important of all — Dr.
Bronson had published his History, embodying in it materials
derived by his father from documents that have entirely disap-
peared. But Dr. Bronson's work was completed within five years
after Waterbury became a city, and was practically limited in its
scope to the period that closes with the Revolutionary war. His
account of " manufacturing in Waterbury," for instance, fills less
than four pages. There was a clear field for the modern historian,
and much interesting material in reference to the earlier times
which had not yet been made use of. The claim of the circular,
that in view of the rapid growth of Waterbury, the " marvellous
development of the industries by which it has became known
throughout the world," and the additional facts concerning its earlier
period that had come to light, the time had arrived for a new his-
tory of the town and city, seemed fully justified.

The plan of the work, as indicated from the start, contemplated
a book divided into two volumes, embracing about a century each.
After a time the accumulation of materials for the modern period
was so great that it became necessary that as much as possible
should be crowded into the first volume. The line separating the
two volumes was accordingly drawn thr(jugh 1825, the year of the
organization of Waterbury as a borough, and this involved the
division of the history of the First church, of vSt. John's parish and
the cemeteries of the town into two parts, the earlier of which is
to be found in Volume I and the later in Volume III.

A recognition of the successive territorial partitions of the
original township involved our including in our scheme the history
of Watertown and Plymouth to 1780, of Wolcott to 1796, of Middle-
bury to 1807, of Prospect to 1826 and of Naugatuck to 1S44. The
earlier history of these derivative towns is covered substantially by
the narrative in Volume I, the only important exception being the
history of Salem society (now Naugatuck) from the Revolution
to its incorporation as a town, which it seemed best to leave, with



PREFACE. V

the exception of the Salem church, to some future liistorian to
reproduce on a scale commensurate with its importance.

The narrative of the colonial and revolutionary periods is the
result of an independent study by Miss Priehard of the original
sources, including documents that have come to light since Dr.
Bronson's History was written. This study was pursued with hut
little reference to Bronson, although the value of his labors was
known from the beginning. It ought to be understood, however,
that it was not the purpose of the author or the editor to super-
sede the earlier work ; on the contrary, certain subjects to which
Bronson devoted special attention are in this Historv passed over
lightly for that reason. It may be added that Dr. Bronson, to the
hour of his death, was deeply interested in the present enterprise.
The outline given at the opening of the second volume indicates
the largeness of the plan upon which the modern history of the
town and city was projected. It has been carried out with a ful-
ness of detail hardly anticipated even by the editor when he
prepared the schedule of topics for the guidance of his collabora-
tors. It is therefore safe to say that this History is more extended
in its scope and more exhaustive in details than any town history
thus far published. This is made evident in the treatment given to
the several departments of the city government, and to special topics
not heretofore included in local histories, as shown in the chapters
on street names, corporations, inventors and their patents, college
graduates, philanthropic institutions, amusements and fraternities.
While the fact has never been lost sight of that Waterbury is a great
manufacturing centre, while the manufactories and the men who
have controlled them have had justice done to them, at the same
time a serious effort has been made to represent the many other
phases of the life of a prosperous modern citv. By following a
plan constructed with some reference to modern sociology, the
History has become almost cyclopaedic in its character, and instead
of being, as the prospectus proposed, a work "in two volumes, of
about 500 pages each," has grown into three volumes, with a total
of 2250 pages. The liberality of the publishers in furnishing to
subscribers so much more than was promised deserves to be recog-
nized here, and this may serve at the same time as an explanation
of the delay in the completion of the work.

In view of the attention given to details, the casual reader will
be surprised at certain omissions and discrepancies which he is
likely to discover. The probability of the occurrence of error is
increased in any work when it is accomplished by collaboration.
But in the present case the chief explanation of omissions and



irregularities is to be found in the lack of cooperation on the part of
the public. For the earlier history of the town the sources are of
course documentary, and were therefore at the command of the
author. For the later history resort must be had to living men, as
individuals or as official representatives of organizations, and in
many instances repeated appeals had to be made in order to
secure a satisfactory statement of essential facts. If the amount of
correspondence and of personal effort on the part of the compiler
required to secure the data for some of our chapters could be
known, it would serve as a revelation in regard to the indifference
of the great majority to matters of history, and the difficulties that
beset the local historian. Should omissions, then, be discovered, it
may be that others than the compiler or the editor are to be blamed
for them. It may be presumed at all events that omissions are not
accidental, or the result of the want of a plan, but were allowed for
some good reason. In the field of manufactures and trade, for
example, it was found necessary to limit the record to corporations,
and not to touch upon unincorporated business firms unless inci-
dentally. There was of course no intention of slighting anybody or
neglecting" any " interest."

In a work like this, one of the matters difficult to deal with is
the biographical element. Who among the living or the dead shall be
selected for biographical treatment? and who shall be omitted? In
answering these questions it was found impossible to draw a line
which any two persons could agree upon. It should be said, how-
ever, that the classification and grouping of biographies under
dift'erent departments naturally led to including persons who might
otherwise have been omitted, while others, of no less value in the
eyes of the community and in their iniluence upon it, were passed
by. In some cases, in which a formal biography is not given, the
significant facts of the life are mentioned incidentally, and can
readily be discovered by help of the index. If some biographies
seem needlessly long and others too brief, it must be remembered
that most of the sketches were prepared from materials furnished
by the persons themselves or by their relatives. A similar remark
may be made in regard to the genealogical data. The appendix of
" Family Records " in our first volume must be of the highest value
from the genealogist's point of view, but our History, nevertheless,
was not intended to be a genealogy, and makes no claim to be so
considered. When, however, the names of a second or third gener-
ation and the birth-dates of male children were furnished, especially
in families fully identified with Waterbury, we put them on record
almost as a matter of course.



The authorship of our History atTords a fine illustration of the
modern tendency to cooperative work in literature. The original
plan, which placed the first hundred years in charge of Miss
Prichard and the second hundred years in chari;e of Miss AVard, has
been substantially followed out, although in each volume a group
of writers is represented. Miss Prichard, in pursuance of her task,
after years of patient and loving research, contributed to the
History an elaborate and vivid narrative covering the colonial and
revolutionary periods, and prepared, in addition, chapters on the
old highways, on earlv place-names, on the history of the First
church and on the church in vSalem society. The relation of her
work to Dr. Bronson's has been already referred to, but it would
not be easy to set forth the entire newness of the picture she
has painted, and the amount of well-estal.)lished detail she has
introduced into it. As we read her story, the Waterbury of the
eighteenth century comes back to us, vital with the old colonial
life and clothed at the same time in that rich and tender coloring
which the past so naturally takes on at the magic touch of a pen
like hers.

From the nature of the case Miss Ward's work was entirely
different. As already indicated, the sources she had to draw upon
were living men and existing organizations, and much labor was
required in securing the cooperation even of those who were them-
selves subjects of the history. The newspapers of half a century
had to be searched, an extended correspondence had to be carried
on and personal interviews held, for the securing of materials, and
after all this came a task of preliminary editorship, ere these
materials could be handed over to the writers who were to prepare
the several narratives. .Such work can never secure the recognition
it deserves, because it is work beneath the surface; but such work as
this underlies our second and third volumes throughout, and without
it our history of modern Waterbury could not have come into being.
Miss Ward's relations to the people of the present time made her a
representative, to a certain extent, of the business aspects of the
publication, and in this field also she has exhibited decided ability.
The numerous illustrations with which the bonk is adorned have
been in her charge, and the elaborate index is the fruit of her skill
in a field in which she is known as an expert.

Among the collaborators there are two who ought to be specially
mentioned because of the large amount of work done by them.
One of these is Miss Katharine Prichard, who prepared with pains-
taking labor the invaluable appendix containing a transcript, with
important additions, of the records of the town in relation to births,



viii PREFACE.

marriages and deaths. The other is Mr. Kingsbury, who has not
only written a number of chapters, but has served continually as a
repository of genealogical and other facts, ever ready to be drawn
upon and always reliable. The others who have cooperated in the
production of the several narratives are designated in the table of
contents prefixed to each volume. A helper who has, perhaps, done
more for the work than is thus indicated is Benjamin F. Rowland,
who has assisted Miss Prichard in following out many lines of re-
search. Another is Professor David G. Porter. Another is Miss
Mary DeForest Hotchkiss, whose services have been chiefly, but by
no means exclusively, clerical. The editor takes the liberty of say-
ing that he regards the men and women who have contributed to
this Histor}- as constituting a corps of workers of exceptional ability
— some of them filling the position of specialists in the fields in
which they have labored.

With so large a variety of authors, it was inevitable that there
should be considerable diversity of style and treatment, and, as
already suggested, occasional repetitions and contradictions. The
diversity of style and treatment is probably an advantage. As for
contradictions and repetitions, they have been eliminated, so far as
a laborious editorial revision could accomplish this. The editor is
not responsible for Miss Prichard's narrative, but only for its place
in relation to the work as a whole. As for the other chapters, he
has taken it upon himself to shape them with reference to a certain
editorial-standard, which included such minor matters as punctua-
tion and capitalization, and the omission of the titles " Mr." and
" Miss," and of the name of the state after places, when that state
is Connecticut. It included also, within certain limits, the literary
form of the chapters.

That some parts of the History are brought down only to 1894
and others to the end of 1895 is explained by the fact that the work
has been going through the press for two years. ^Many changes
ha\-c taken place in the community in the meantime, the most
important of which is probably the securing of a new charter for
the city and the reorganization under it of the municipal depart-
ments. (As the first volume was printed before the division into
three volumes was decided upon, some of the references therein to
Volume II should read "Volume III.")

Since this work was first projected, several books and pamphlets
have appeared, relating to the history of Waterbury. Among these
are: " Waterbury and Her Industi'ies," published in 188S; "Water-
bury Illustrated," published by Adt & Brother in 1889; "The Book
of the Riverside Cemetery," 1889; "Waterbury, its Location, Wealth,



PUKFACE. ix

Finances, etc.. published by the Board of Trade," 1S90: "The Mili-
tary History of Waterbury," 1S91; "The Churches of Mattatuek,"
1892, and " The History of Ne\y Hayen County" (Volume H, Chapter
XV) 1892. It is pleasant to note that all these, except the last, \yere
prepared by writers belonging- to our corps of collaborators, and
were not designed to supersede this work or any part of it.

A fact which ought not to pass without mention here is that sey-
eral of those who haye been engaged upon this work did not liye to
see it completed. Of the writers whose names appear in our table of
contents four haye finished their earthly course since the History
was begun; Nathan Dikeman, Israel Holmes, 2nd, who died Feb-
ruary 12, 1895, the Rey. J. H. Duggan, who died Noyember 10, 1895,
and Thomas .S. Collier of New London. The widely-known en-
grayer, Alexander H. Ritchie, by whom most of the steel plate
portraits in this History were executed, died September 20, 1S95, in
his seventy-fourth year. He was a native of vScotland, an artist
in oil colors, and for twenty-fiye years a member of the National
Academy of Design. He had frequently expressed a desire to com-
plete this series of portraits, u]wn which he had been at work for
seven years, and during his last illness had the satisfaction of
knowing that his hope had been realized. It is to be added that
George S. Lester, who, as a representative of the publishers, was
for some time closely connected with the History, and well-known
in Waterbury, died on April 20, 1S93.

The editor ventures to say a word in conclusion in reference to
his own work. It was understood at the outset that the three
gentlemen mentioned in the prospectus should constitute a kind of
editorial board, to whom the various doubtful questions likely to
arise, as well as the general shaping of the work, should be sub-
mitted. This position they have not abdicated and their advice
has continually been sought, but as the work advanced, its editorial
management devolved more and more upon the undersigned, and
became by degrees a close supervision, extending not only to the
general plan and outline but to innumerable details of form and
arrangement, to say nothing of the composition of entire chapters
of the narrative. The duty of supervision, which the editor
thought of in advance as but little else than a pastime, proved for
various reasons to be a prolonged and laborious task. The plan of
the History was so extensive, and the standard adopted so high,
that a miich greater burden of labor came upon him than he antici-
pated when he accepted the position. His professional duties, of
course, could not be transferred, and this special work must there-
fore be performed at odd times and during summer vacations and



X PREFACE.

in midnight hours. If it is not what it ought to be, he hopes that
these facts may serve to explain deficiencies. Looking back over
the past fotir years, he is inclined to appropriate as his own the
quaint language of Anthony ;'i Wood in the preface to his History
of Oxford: " A painful work it is, I'll assure you, and more than
difficult, — wherein what toyle hath been taken, as no man thinketh
so no man believeth, except he hath made the trial." A " painful
work," but a work that has had its pleasures; and not the least of
these has been the close association into which it has brought the
editor with the other workers in the same field. That it has
also opened up to him a richer and more detailed knowledge of this
noble old town, of which he has been a citizen for more than thirty
years — a town remarkable for its strong men and for its marvel-
lous development as an industrial centre — is something for which
he cannot cease to be grateful.

JOSEPH ANDERSON.



W.ATERBURY, FeBRI ART 22, 1896.



CONTENTS OF VOLUME I.



CHAPTER

I. PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

By Homer F. Bass,//, M. A.

II. ABORIGINAL INHABITANTS

Bv till- Reii. foseph Anderson, D. D. Also the three
following chapters.

HI. INIHAN DEEDS AND SIGNATURES

IV. INDIAN GEi^GRAPHICAL NAMES

V. STONE IJIPLEJHCNTS OF MATTATIXK

VI. LONDON'S PLANTATION IN MASSACHUSETTS BAY, .
By jU/ss Saroh J. Priehard. This and the following
chapters to Chapter XXXIV were written by Miss
Priehard.

VII. MASSACHUSETTS BAY'S PLANTATION IN CONNECTI
CUT

VIII. CONNECTICUT'S PLANTATION AT I\IATTATLXK,

IX. MATTATUCK AS A PLANTATION,

X. MATTATUCK AS A PLANTATION,

XL ORDERS OF THE ASSEMBLY'S COMMITTEE,

XII. MATTATUCK AS A PLANTATION.

XIII. MATTATUCK AS A PLANTATION,

XIV. THE TOWNSHIP OF i6S0

XV. WATERBURY IN 16S9,

XVI. FROM 16S5 to 1(191,

XVII. THE FIRST CHURCH OF WATERBURY.

XVIII. MEADOWS, ISLANDS AND HILLS,
XIX. DURING QUEEN ANNE'S WAR,

XX. THE SCOTT FAMILY

XXI. THE COMMON FENCE

XXII. TO THE CLOSE OF THE PROPRIETORS' REIGN,

XXIII. THE NEW INHABITANTS,

XXIV. EARLY NORTHBURY'



144
150
15S
176
1S5
203
215
224

24S

264
277
292
3"



342
353
366
3S3
39S
409
433
445



54S



xii CONTENTS OF VOLUME 1

CHAPTER

XXV. EARLY WESTBURY, ....

XXVI. EVENTS FROM 1732 TO 1741, .

XXVII. THE SETTLEMENT AT JUDD'S MEADOWS,

XXVIII. LANDS HELD BY NON-RESIDENT OWNERS,

XXIX. 1742-1760

XXX. WATERBL'RV IN THE COLONIAL WARS, .

XXXI. WATERBURY'S LATER YEARS AS A COLONIAL TOWN

XXXII. WATERBURY IN THE WAR OF THE REVOLUTION,

XXXIII. WATERBURY IX THE REVOLUTION

XXXIV. WATERBURY IN THE REVOLUTION

XXXV. AN ERA OF RECONSTRUCTION, . . .

By Arthur Reed Kimball.

XXXVI. LIFE IN THE AGE OF HOMESPUN

By Mrs. Emily Goodrich Smilh {ivifh additions).

XXXVII. OLD HIGHWAYS AND STREETS

By Miss Surah /. Prichard and Benjamin F. Ho^vlatid.

XXXVIII. OLD MILLS AND EARLY MANUFACTURES, . . 572

By the Hon. Frederick J. Kingsbury, LL. D.

XXXIX. THE EARLY SCHOOLS AND THE FIRST ACADEMY, . 592
By Miss Charlotte Benedict; the First Academy by the
late Israel Holmes, 3nd.

XL. THE FIRST CHURCH TO 1S25; ALSO THE CHURCH IN

SALE.M 601

By Miss S. J. Prichard (pp. 601-616; 640-646) and Dr.
fosepli Anderson. The biography of Dr. Samuel
Hopkins by Miss Benedict.

XLI. THE EPISCOPAL PARISH TO 1S30 647

By F. J. Kingsbury, LL. D.

XLII. BURYING GROUNDS AND TOLLING BELLS, . . .666
By Miss Katharine Prichard (pp. 666-6S0) and Dr. Joseph
Anderson.

XLIII. ENGLISH PLACE NAMES OF MATTATUCK, . . . 6S5
By Miss S. J. Prichard and Benjamin F. Hoivland.

APPENDIX. FAMILY RECORDS pp. 1-166

Bv Miss Katharine Prichard.



PORTRAITS IN THIS VOLUME.
OX STEEL.



f\nderson, Joseph.



Frontispiece.



MISCELLANEOUS.



Bronson. Alvin,
Bronson, Josiah,
Cook, Lemuel,
Hopkins, Samuel, D. D,.



518
515
315
'-■34



ILLUSTRATIONS IN THIS VOLUME.



John Warner's staff, .....

Tree in the rock on the old Cheshire road,

.'V western war-club, scalp-locks attached, and old Waterburv buttons marked

" Scovills & Co. extra," .....

Pestle of Turkey hill Indians, .....

Indian pipes, ... ...

Implements found in Naugatuck, .....

:5oapstone dish and chipped implements, Hospital bluff, Waterburv.

Dish, axes and " Chungke stone," Waterbury,

Specimens found near Bunker Hill, ....

^estle and soapstone dish from Watertown,

Toy implements from a child's grave, ....

\rticles of agreement and association adopted by the planters of JIat

first page, .......

Articles of agreement; second page,

Articles of agreement; reverse, ... . '

The old Town Plot, .......

House lots of Mattatuck, 16S1,

Jr. Henry Bronson's map, . - . . .

The oldest gravestone, .....

The Indian deed of February 20, i6S_|, ...

The Three Sisters, alias the Three Brothers,

Waterbury township of 1686; view from ilalmalick hill,

Proprietors' book of record, 1677-1722,

rlop Meadow hill; the sections remaining in ijgi,

I.,ooking down upon Steel's meadow and plain, .

Pine meadow, looking southward from Reynolds brici.m.

Jericho rock and Buck's Meadow mountain.



Online LibraryJoseph AndersonThe town and city of Waterbury, Connecticut, from the aboriginal period to the year eighteen hundred and ninety-five (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 110)