Maine Historical Society.

Collections of the Maine historical society (Volume 1) online

. (page 1 of 34)
Online LibraryMaine Historical SocietyCollections of the Maine historical society (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 34)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


Jf*? ^




/2^^'



COLLECTIONS



PROCEEDINGS



MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY



SECOND SERIES. VOL. VI



PORTLAND

PUBLISHED BY THE SOCIETY

'895



f-/6



£<?L Axir



PRESS OF

THE THURSTON PRINT

PORTLAND, MAINE



CONTENTS

lA<iK

Gen. David Cobb of Goiildsborough, Maine. By Col. Josei»li W.

Porter, 1

Some Old Papers Kecently Found in the Stone Tower of the First

Parisli Church of Portland. By Rev. John Carroll Perkins, . 7

Block and Garrison Houses of Ancient Falmouth. By Leonard B.

Chapman, 37

The First Mention of Pemaquid in History. By Rev. Henry .S.

Burrafje, 53

Beginnings at Poraaiiuid. By Rev. Henry O. Thayer, ... 62

Sketches of the Lives of Early Maine Ministers. By William I).
Williamson: —

Rev. Benjamin Stevens S.5

Rev. Ephraim Clark 87

Rev, Gideon Richardson, 88

Rev. Samuel Lanjifdon, 8J>

Rev. John Morse !i()

Rev. Jacob Foster, . iU

Rev, Elisha Eaton, ii.)

Rev. John Wis well 184

Rev. Moses Hemmenway 18(5

Rev. Nathan Ward 188

Rev. John Miller 1851

Rev. Peter Thatcher Smith U>0

Rev, Thomas Pierce, I'.'l

Rev. John Fairfield W2

Rev. Paul Coffin, 1!>4

Rev. Edward Brooks I!).5

Rev. Isaac Hasey, '.•'•i

Rev. .lonah Winship :l()7

Rev. Samuel Foxcroft :''>>i

Rev. Samuel Deane, -iio

Rev. Ezekiel Emerson, •112

Kev. John Murray, . . ; 14

Rev. Matthew .\Ierriam -141

Rev. Ebenezer Williams 441

Rev. Josiah Thatcher, 442

Rev. Thomas Brown 44.]

Rev. Silas Moodv. . 444



IV CONTEXTS.

PAGE

Hallowell Records. Communicated by W. B. Lapham. 94. 196, 321, 445

Proceedings 1892, 102, 201

1893 202

\SM, 209, 328

The First Maine Bishop. By Rev. C. F. Allen, D. D 113

ilacfaias in the Revolution. By Rev. Charles H. Pope, . . . 121

John Fairbanks — His Journal Contributed by Herbert Hairis, 139

The Rasles Dictionaij. By Rev. E. C. Cummings, ... 144

Cape Porpoise. Old and New. By Henry F. Knight. . 153

Marriages Solemnized by Oliver "Wood, Esquire, of Lincoln County, 175
Portland Privateers in the War of 1S12. Contiibuted by Capt.

Daniel O. Davis. 1TB. 302

Act of Incorporation and By-Laws 215

The St. Croix Commission. By Rev. Henry S. Burrage. D. D. . 225

White's Bridge. By Samuel T. Dole, 252

Mogg Heigon — His Life, His Death, audits Sequel. By Horatio

Height, 256

Reminiscences of Rev. Dr. Edward Payson. By Cyrus Hamlin,

D. D., LL. D 280

Brig. General Wadsworth's Deposition, Court of Inquiry. Penob-
scot Expedition, 291

General WDUam Whipple. By Moses Arsvood Safford. Esq.. . 337
Temperance and the Drink Question in the Old Time. By Hon.

George Foster Talbot 3-57

Charter Rights of Massachusetts in Maine in the Early Part of the

Eighteenth Century. Contributed by Henry S BuiTage, D. D., 392

The Settlement of Scarborongh. By Augustus F. Moulton. Esq., 415



ILLUSTRATIONS

PAOE

David Cobb, 1

Joshua Soule, .112

From a page of Father Rasle's Dictionary. . 144

The St. Croix of Mitchell's Map 226

Boundary Lines Claimed and Proposed, . 248

William Whipple, 337



r.HN. DAVID COBB OF GOULDSBOROUGH,

MAINE



MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY COLLECTIONS.

GEN. DAVID COBB OF GOULDSBOROUGH.

MAINE.

BY COL. JOSEPH W. PORTER.
Bead before the Maine Historical Society, January 25, 1S94.

From 1795 to 1820, for a quarter of a century,
Gen. Co])b -was the most conspicuous and influen-
tial citizen of Eastern Maine, and possibly of the
whole state. As his name and flime have been almost
wholly appropriated by the mother state, I have
thought it proper to assert his claims as a citizen of
Maine. I have before me several volumes ^ of Mas-
sachusetts origin which contain biographies of him,
two of which make no allusion to his residence in
Maine, and the others made of it the merest mention.

David Cobb was the son of Thomas and Lydia Cobb,
of Attleborough, Massachusetts, and was born Septem-
ber 14, 1748. He was fitted for college by Joseph
Marsh, Jr., of Brain tree, Massachusetts, who had a
classical or Latin private school there from 1740 to
1762. Mr. Cobb was graduated from Harvard College
in 1766. He stmlied medicine with Dr. Perkins of

' Histoi-y of Taimton, by Rev. Samuel H. Emery, D. d., 1853. Two volumes.
Familiar Letters on Public Characters, by Gen. William Sullivan, lioston, 1834.
Address of Hon. Francis Baylie before the Taunton Lyceum, July 2, 1K:50.
Proceedings of the Massachusetts Senate on the Occasion of the Presentation of
a Portrait of Gen. Cobb, February 23, 1SS2.

Vol. VI. 2



2 MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY.

Boston (or Bridgewater), and settled in Taunton in
1766. He married the same year, Eleanor Bradish, of
Cambrido;e, Massachusetts. He was elected represen-
tative to the General Court in 1774, as a colleague
with his brother-in-law, the distinguished Robert Treat
Paine, one of the signers of the Declaration of
Independence.

In 1777, he entered the army as lieutenant-colonel
of the Sixteenth Massachusetts Regiment, of which
Henry Jackson was colonel. This was a famous regi-
ment, and was in many famous battles. Cobb's brav-
ery and judgment attracted the attention of Washing-
ton, and in 1781 he appointed Cobb a member of his
staff. He continued through the war in that position,
the beloved, intimate, trusted friend of Washington,
and after the close of the war he went to Mount Ver-
non and passed several months there.

He returned to Taunton in 1784, and resumed the
practice of his profession. The state had need of his
services. In 1784 he was appointed chief justice of
the Court of Common Pleas for Bristol County, an
office which he held for about eight years. In 1785,
he was elected major-general of the Fifth Division of
Massachusetts Militia. In 1786, a local insurrection
took place in Eastern Massachusetts, which was par-
ticularly aimed at the courts. In June the mob at-
tempted to prevent the holding of Judge Cobb's court.
He ordered the militia out and addressed the mob,
and told them he " would sit as judge or die as o-en-
eral." In the end his courage and bravery overcame
the insurrection. In 1789, he was elected representa-



GEX. DAVID conn OF (JOULDSnOROUGH, MAIM:. 3

live to the General Court, and for that year and three
more years was speaker of the House. In 17'.l2, he
was appointed as eoininissioner to run the boundary
line between Massachusetts and Rhode Island, a ques-
tion which had been in dispute for more than one
hundred and filty years. He was representative in
Congress, 1793-95.

In 1795, he was appointed agent of the great Bing-
ham estate in Eastern Maine, and in that year or early
in 1796 he removed to Gouldsborough. He erected a
house on Gouldsborough Point, on the easterl}'' side of
the town. His house was always open, generous and
hospitable. There Gen. Knox, Gen. Henry Jack-
son, William Bingham, the principal owner of the
Bingham estate, and others visited him. The roads
of that time were few and bad, and the ocean was the
great highway for travelers. Few men of any note
passed by without calling upon Gen. Cobb.

Upon his arrival at Gouldsborough he at once com-
menced great enterprises, which he hoped would benefit
both jn'oprietors and settlers. He laid out miles of
roads in the town and northerly of it, on lands of the
estate ; some of these roads were built.

He built wharves, storehouses, saw mills and ships,
and for a time shipped large quantities of lumber to
the West Indies. He was passionately fond of agri-
cultural pursuits, and spent much time and money in
promoting that interest. He fondly hoped to found a
city at Gouldsborough, but business and settlers went
to other towns, Ellsworth, Steuben, Narraguagus River,
and further to the eastward. The city of his andjitiou



4 MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY.

faded away like a dream, and is now almost as much
a myth as the ancient city of Norumbega on the
Penobscot.

With all his business cares the interests of the Dis-
trict of Maine made constant demands upon him. He
was senator from Hancock County 1801, 1802, 1803
and 1805, and president of the Senate all those years.
In 1803, he was appointed chief justice of the Court
of Common Pleas for Hancock County, and held his
court in Castine until 1809.

In 1804, he headed the Federal electoral ticket of
Massachusetts as candidate for elector at large.

General Cobb was major-general of the Fifth Divi-
sion of Massachusetts Militia in the District of Maine
for several years before 1814, when he was succeeded
by John Bhike of Brewer. He was lieutenant-gov-
ernor of Massachusetts in 1809, and was defeated as a
candidate for re-election. He was supreme executive
councillor for the district of which Hancock County
was a part for 1805, 1808, 1812, 1813, 1814, 1815 and
1817 ; indeed, that office seems always to have been
kept open for him.

In 1820, the management of the Bingham estate
having passed into the hands of his son-in-law. Col.
John Black, of Ellsworth, and being in feeble health,
he concluded to go to Taunton and live with his
children there. He removed the last of 1820, or the
first of the following year. Many years previous to
this, January 8, 1808, Mrs. Cobb died while on a
visit to Taunton. His widowed daughter, Mrs. Betsey
Smith, immediately went to Gouldsborough and, while



OEX. DAVID conn OF OOULDSBOROUfill, MAINE. 5

rii'ii. Coljl) lived tliere, \v;is his faitliful housekeeper.
When he left thei'e he left his home, his hooks and
jK'ipers, a diary whieli he kept all ihioiiLih the Kexolii-
tionarv war, which is now in the possession ol' his
grejit-grandson, Mr. George N. Black, of Boston, and
another diary of his life in Gouldsborough, which his
descendants there have.

After his removal to Taunton he took much in-
terest in public affairs, and remembered with peculiar
satisfaction his lesidence in Maine. In 1<S2'J, he re-
moved to the Massachusetts General Hospital in Bos-
ton, of which he is said to have been one of the
founders, to spend the remainder of his life there, lie
died April 17, 1830, and was buried beside his wife at
Taunton. A monument has since been erected to
their memory.

His will of February 18, 1829, was proved in Han-
cock County (a large part of his property being still
there) August 18, 1830. The trustees of his will were
his sons, Thomas and D. G. W., of Taunton, and his
sons-in-law, Judge Samuel S. Wilde, of Boston, and
Col. John Black, of Ellsworth. As a matter of fact it
seems that Col. Black settled the estate.

Genei\'il and Mrs. Cobb had eleven children, of whom
si.x died in Maine, two in the Northwest and three in
Massacliusetts. Descendants in female lines are very
numerous in Eastern Maine. General Col)b was the
bnnider of Taunton Academv, a founder and vice-pres-
ident of the " Society of the Cincinnati," and a mem-
ber of the American Society of Arts and Sciences.

He was a man of full stature, an agreeable person.



6 aoXST HISTOEICAL SOCTETT.

frank, sincere, honorable, pure and kind-hearted, and
altogether a man who can safely be praised in an
obituarv notice.

In religion he was a Congregationalist, and in poli-
tics a Federalist. As a judge, although not a lawyer,
he had a good knowledge of law as applied to causes
which were brought before him for trial. It was said of
him at Castine that some times he took a "' short cut "
to get at the justice of a matter. When he sat on
the bench he wore his cocked hat and revolutionary
costume.

As a presiding officer he possessed remarkable grace,
dignity and tact, and by his strict impartiality won
the unqualified approval of his political opponents.

I have given this sketch of this eminent Maine citi-
zen, executive councillor, general, judge, lieutenant-
governor and senator, in order that the people of
Maine may hold him in remembrance. His portrait
hangs in the senate chamber at Boston, over which
body he presided four years. There is nothing in or
about that portrait to remind the beholder that when
Gen. Cobb presided over that body he was a citizen
of Grouldsborough, Maine.



OLD mtST PAKI5H DOCTMETr?.



SOME OLD PAPERS RECENTLY FOUND

L\ THE STONE TOWER OF THE FIRST

PARISH CHURCH OF PORTLAND.

BT KKV. JOHX CARSOIX PESKIXS.

al S^cie:,

A XOTE at the bottom of page 305 iu Mr. Wi'.'is'
edition of The Journals of the Rev. Thomas Smith
and the Rev. Samuel Deane, pastors of the First
church in Portland, reads as follows : —

September 2, ITiU. Mr. Define read his aiijiwer • ^'^

being Lord's d«y, lo the chutvh and parish, in the .. :.

X. B. The answer, untranscribed, is among the orig >

of this lHX>k.

The letter of acceptance, which certainly has never

been seen by this generation, I will read : —

Letter of Acckpta.xce of :hs Rev. Samuel Deaxk.

ff.mortd antl cUarit/ bf/op«i ftM CAA, amf iHAabiiaiUs

of tAe^first J'^tr%s/^ in J'

Whereas

I have been informed by your rerenjnd P.'istor, that this Chh
have unanimously ma^ie choic« of me to be a Colleague Pastor
with him.

And that the Honble Committee of ye Parish hare a^^surevi me
that, at a meetg duly assembled, the Inhabit,ants concurreil with
the Vote of the Church.

H:^vg taken ys .affairs into deliberate »fe serious Consideration,
and sought for the l^est advice and direction ; I take ys opj^r-
tunity to inform you. yt I have conolude^i to .accept of yr kind
Invitation and settle in the Work of the \(inistry among you.
And havg determined to spend my whole Time and Strength in



8 MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY.

promotg the Welfare of yr Souls and ye Souls of your Children ;
I am willg to trust in God yt yr Hearts will be so disposed by
him, that you will not suffer me to want a suitable Reward for
my Labours, during my Pastoral Relation to you. Considering
the grt difficuty of the Employment I am undertakg, I earnestly
desire you to use your best Interest at the Throne of Grace for
me, yt I may be more & more replenished with all ministerial
Gifts & Graces, and yt I may come unto you in the fulness of the
blessg of the Gospel of Xt.

per Samuel Deane.
September 2d, 1764.

Continuing the note just referred to, Mr. Willis

says : —

We must add another N". B. to this, to express our regret
that none of the original papers of the First Parish, except the
volume of records, can be found. They were probably scattered
during the war.

It is these papers, or by far the majority of them,
that have lately been found in the church.

Back of the organ in the First Parish church is a
small room in which the sexton tolls the bell for re-
ligious worship. From this room there is a door lead-
ing into the tower whither the man ascends who rings
the bell for calling the court together, at the time of
its sessions. There is also another door leadins; to a
small room under the tower stairs. This room is not
dark, but is lighted by the semicircular window that
is directly over the large middle door of entrance to
the church, the floor of the room cutting off a part of
the window.

In this room was the chest in which the old papers
of the parish have been preserved for many years.
It is a common pine wood chest, painted a slate



OLD FIRST PARISII DOCUMENTS. 9

color ami marked '' First Parish Recorder.'' Its exist-
ence was not unknown to many men in the j)ai-ish,
hut two things hindered until now the examination of
its contents. In the first place there was the general
impression that the chest contained nothing but pack-
ages of old receipts. In the second place there was
the feeling of delicacy, if it would not better be called
common honesty, that prevents men from tampering
with articles that are under lock and key. It was (he
overstepping of this secoml law, about six weeks ago,
that brought the papers to light.

It is dilficult to tell just when the papers were
placed in this chest, nor is it known how old the chest
is. It is probable that they were jdaced there at
dilTerent times in the course of the present and per-
liaps the last century.

It is very strange that Mr. Willis did not know of
tlieir existence, for while the edition of the Journals to
which I have referred was prepared in the year 1840,
there are papers in the chest bearing dates nearly ten
years later than this.

The chest w^as about half full of documents of var-
ious kinds. ]. There are two bound books. They
both contain the reports of the treasurers of the
parish and embrace the years from 1765 to 18-30.
The first is a parchment-bound book, long and narrow,
about fifteen and one-half inches l)y six. On the out-
side covrr is written "Parish Book." The first entry
bears the date April, 1765, and is in the handwriting
t)f James Milk, for whom Milk Street, in our city, is
named. It continues in the handwriting of John



10 MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETr.

Frothingham and others. There are seventy-two
double pages, debit and credit accounts occupying
opposite pages. The first book ends in 1824. The
last entry is in the handwriting of Charles S. Daveis.

The second book is larger, is bound in sheep, and is
eight inches by thirteen. On the back in red label
with gold letters is the title " First Parish Records."
A white paper label pasted on the side reads, " Journal
and Ledy-er First Parish in Portland." This label is
probably in the handwriting of Isaac Ilsley. One
recognizes the handwriting of John Mussey, Joseph
Ilsley, et al. The book closes in the year 1856.
There are one hundred and seventy-eight pages as re-
corded, but errors in numbering have made the total
somewhat larger than it really is. These books con-
tain all the financial results of the years already
stated. There are many interesting autographs on
these pages, for in many cases the pages contain
vouchers and other memoranda to which the names of
men are appended, who had dealings with the parish.

2. In the second place there are the lists of parish
taxes. These are not complete, though they cover
in great part the period from 1734 to 1849. The first
is " A Copy of The Schoolmasters Rate Committed to
Constable " 1734. Here are nine pages of names with
the taxes on polls, on real estate, and on personal
estate and faculty. The total is £48, 5s. The asses-
sors were Sam^ Moody and John East. The second
is: —

A List of the Ministers Rate & other Charges for the First
Parish in the Town of Falmouth for the year 1739 and Comited



OLD FIRST rARISII DOCUMENTS. 11

To James Wyinan, Collector for s'^ Parish, Said List Containing
'I'wo Iliiinlred Seventy Eiiiht Persons Names and Amounts in
the whole to the Sam of Two Hundred Fifty Four Pounds
Twelve Shillings & Eight Pence.

The parish assessors wliose aiiton:raplis are affixed
^VL're Sam' Moody, Joseph Noyes, William Cotton.

The tax-list of 1744 contains three hundred and five
polls.

There are four books or pamphlets of 1746. The
lists of names are beautifully written by Enoch Free-
man. They are the town and county rates for the
First Parish in Falmouth and the Second Parish in Fal-
mouth ; also the province taxes for the two parishes.

It may be well to recall for a moment the parish
divisions of Falmouth and Portland.

Falmouth was incorporated in the year 1718. The
Second Parish of Falmouth was set off from the First
Parish in the year 1733. I read from the town
records, volume 2, page 72fl ' : —

These are in his majesties name to Requior ye freholders and
other inhabitants of the town of falinoiith <|ualified for voting
according to his majesties Charter.

To assemble and meet together at the meetinghouse in sd
town on rauuday the seventh day of may next at 10 of the clock
in the forenoon then and tliere to vote the JJeverend Mr. Smiths
s.lery for this year.

2. 'J'o see if the Town wiU vote and order the seting of the
Pon|>U' and Estates on the south side of the foreriver to Be a
Separate Parish.

3. To agree ujion some nutliod to sii|«lv the Town with a
(iiamcr Scoolemaster for this Present year and how to pay said
scoolemaster.

• This icforcucc Is to the copy of the Ueconls in the city clerk's offlce, Portland.



12 MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY.

4. To chose a Constable in the Roome of John Jiirden who
Refused to serve Given under our hands at falmouth Apr. 21,

1733.

Henry Wheeler ]
Robert Thorndike | Select Men
John East V for

Moses Pearson Falmouth

Joseph Cobb

We the Subscribers have according to a vote of the town of
falmouth warned the freholders and other inhabitants as within
mentioned to appear at the time and place within mentioned by-
posting up notifications in sd town one at ye meeting house and
the other at Mr. John Sawyers on the south side of the fore-
river.

May the seventh 1733

John East ^

Henry Wheeler I Selectmen
Joseph Cobb y for

I Jobert Thorndike | Falmouth
Moses Pearvson J

Recorded & Moses Pearson

Town Clerk

At a legal town meeting held at ye meeting house in falmouth
the 7th day of may 1733.

Henry Wheeler was chosen moderator for said meeting.

Voted, that there Be a Rate leved on the pols and Estates in
sd town of one hundred and sixty pounds to pay the Reverend
Mr. Smiths salery for this year and to find him firewood for ye
term.

Voted, that as many of the people and estates as desire the
same lying On the South side of the foreriver Running up said
River to Stroudwater River and so into ye Contrey as Stroud-
water River runs shall Be set off to be a Seperate Parrish and
shall Be discharged from paying any part of the Rev. Mr.
Smiths Salery or his suckcessors when they have Bult a meeting-
house and settled an ortherdox minister on the South side of sd
River.

Recorded & Moses Pearson

Town Clerk



OLD FIKST I'Ai:i<H DOCUMENTS. 13

Tlie Tliinl P;irisli of Faliuoiith ^v:ls .^cl off in the
yvav 1754. T\\\< is \\li;it \v;is known as New Casco
;inil is the present town ol' Falinonth. The Fonrth
Parisli of Fahnonth was set oil' in the yearlTiil. This
was Stroudwater .ind vicinity. Portland was oi-;u"an-
i/ed in the year IT'^ti. The Second Parish was formed
in thi' year 1788. Tlie third Congregational society
in l*i»rtland was incorporated in 1808. ^Vith the ex-
ception of till' fust and last of these religions divisions,
the original petitions with the antograph signatnres
were found among the [)a[)ers of wdiich we are speak-
ing. The first is not here hecause the parish and
town records were identical until the year 1733. The
matter and the (h'cision of the town as recorded has
already been mentioned. The hist would not be
;imong the pnpers, because the laws relating to reli-
gious societies had been changed and carried into
eflect in tliis vicinity soon after 1787. There are in-
teresting papers relating to this question.

But I'eturning to the tax lists, we find them for the
years 171"). 17 18-r)(i, 1752-5G. There is an interesting
memorandum written on the outside of the tax book
for 17-30, as follows: —

TIu' Polls in this Hill l^ncliuling widilows ammonntincf to
3S0 .ill .)f whicli .arc Intitloil Each one to a Psalm IJook .agree-
al)le to a \'i>te of tlie Parisli in the year ITTiG lo be Payed for
out of the Parish Stock. 1756 Collector IJiiylcy.

The reference is to the vote of March 10. 1756,
when twenty-five pounds were voted to purchase Tate
».^ Brady's Psalm Books, with the tunes annexed.

The tax books continue for the year 17GG ; in 1770



14 MAINE HISTOEICAL SOCIETY.

are lists for The Neck and for Back Cove. There are
altogether about a hundred of these lists, giving the
names and the taxes of all people in the First Parish
of Falmouth and Portland for their respective years.

There are seven lists of Churchmen, covering the -
years 1770-74 ; also 1784-85. It is known to all, of
course, that at this time there was a good deal of feel-
ing on the part of the Churchmen. They naturaHy
felt the difficulty of paying taxes to the First Parish,
in addition to the amounts raised for their own reli-
gious purposes. St. Paul's, as it was then called (this
was the society now known as St. Stephen's), had gone
off from the First Parish, with those who were opposed
to the ordination of Samuel Deane, in 1764. This
seceding party quarreled among themselves. In one
case, according to the journal of Dr. Smith, two ardent
spirits came to blows in the street. (The combatants
according to William Willis were Gen. Preble and
Capt. John Waite.)

The party which declared for the Church of Eng-
land, built a house in 1765, and settled John Wiswell,
late of New Casco. These Churchmen petitioned the
First Parish to have their taxes remitted. This ques-
tion furnished article ten of the parish meeting, March
12, 1765. The article was dismissed. In 1772 at the
meeting of May 27, it was voted 'to pay over to the



Online LibraryMaine Historical SocietyCollections of the Maine historical society (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 34)