Ellery Bicknell Crane.

Historic homes and institutions and genealogical and personal memoirs of Worcester county, Massachusetts, with a history of Worcester society of antiquity (Volume 2) online

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March 9, 173.S; Lydia, born September 5, 1719;
Elizabeth, married Ebenezer Curtis, 1747 ; Grace,
born 1725, married Adam Prouty, 1744; Thomas.

(IV) Joseph Ramsdell, son of Thomas Ramsdell
(3), was horn in Plymouth colony about 1701, died.
August 22, 1787, aged eighty-six years. He was
admitted to the Hanover Church, May 4, 1729. He
settled and lived during his active life on a farm in
Hanover. He married (first) Mary Homer, April

23, 1730. She was admitted to the Hanover Church,
July <>. 1740, and died June I, 1754. He married
(second), November 25, 1755, Mercy Prior, who,
dud July 20, 1766. The children of Joseph and
Mary Ramsdell were: Mary, born January 6, 1731,
married, 1748, William Whiting; Avis, born July 14,
1732, died December 28, 1740; Priscilla, baptized
September 8, 1734. married, December 25, 1755,
Isaac Prouty; Nehemiah, born November 13, 1734,
married Rebecca Chamberlain, December 29, 1757,
and settled in Connecticut; Thomas, born October
3, 1736, died March 13, 1757; Joseph, born April 25,
■739. died April 6, 1740; Avis, born 1 741, baptized
March 29, 1741 ; married Joshua Dwelley, December

24, 1761 ; Joseph, of whom later ; Japhet, born Au-
gust 22, 1745, died June 19, 1750; Sarah, born April

19, 1749. married Oliver Pool, January 13, 1774. The
children of Joseph and Mercy Ramsdell were :
Mercy, born April 28, 1757, married Ralph Estes,
November 4. 1778; Lydia, born 1759, baptized Au-
gust 26, married, November 6, 1791, Samuel Whit-
comb.

(V) Joseph Ramsdell, eighth child of Joseph
Ramsdell (4), was born in Hanover, Massachusetts,
July 3, 1743. He was a soldier in the revolution in
Captain Amos Turner's company, Colonel John
Cushing's regiment (the Second Plymouth) in
1776 and probably other service. He died August
5, 1817. He bought or received a grant of land at
Warren, where in 1800 his two sous, Joseph and
Homer Ramsdell. settled.

He married, February I, 1770, Elizabeth Barker,
who died June 19, 1786. He married (second)
Elizabeth Ellis, May 17, 1787. She died October

20, 1811, aged fifty-nine years. The children of Jo-
seph and Elizabeth Ramsdell were: Mary, born July
29, 1771, married, July 20, 1789, Nathaniel Ellis;
Priscilla, born March 18, 1773, died July 24, 1774;
Joseph, born September 10, 1775; Priscilla, born July
7, 1776, died October 17, 1777; Barker, baptized June
!3> 1779; Homer, born 1781, of whom later.

(VI) Homer Ramsdell, sixth and youngest child
of Joseph Ramsdell (5), was born in Hanover,
Massachusetts, 1781. He removed to Warren
(formerly Western), Worcester county, Massachu-
setts, in 1800, and with his brother Joseph settled
on their father's land there. He became a pros-
perous farmer and one of the most prominent citi-
zens of the town. For many years he was on the
board of selectmen. He was an able speaker and was
frequently heard at town meetings and other public
gatherings. He died in Warren, December 19,.
1S50. He was what was then known as a free
thinker, a man of high character, generous, char-
itable and public-spirited. He was one of the lead-
ing men of his section of the county.

He married Betsey Stockbridg:, October 27,
1816. She was born in Western in 1791. and died
in Warren in 1876. The children of Homer and
Betsey Ramsdell : William B.. born in Warren,
June 2, 1S25, of whom later; Mary E., born Septem-
ber 25, 1829, married. May 2. 1851. Joseph K. Make-
peace, and they have one child. Mary E. Makepeace,
born February, 1852.




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WORCESTER COUNTY



385



(VII) William Ramsdell, son of Homer Rams-
dell (6), was born in Warren, Massachusetts, June
2, 1825. He attended the public schools there and
studied also at Munson Academy for a year. He
qualified as a civil engineer, and for thirty years
in addition to his other occupations practiced the
profession in his vicinity. He was brought up on
a farm and was chiefly occupied with farming until
1864, when he began to manufacture boots and
shoes. He built up an extensive and flourishing
business. In 1S84, after twenty years, he retired
with a comfortable competence and was thereafter
occupied chiefly with the care of his property. For
a short time he was in partnership before he retired
with B. A. Tripp under the firm name of Ramsdell
& Tripp. He owned considerable real estate in
Warren, largely business property including the
Ramsdell block, which he named in memory of his
deceased son Homer. He was greatly interested in
the town and always strove to advance the public
interests as well as his own. He was the first presi-
dent of the board of trade, a position he filled very
acceptably for a number of years. He was one of
the founders of the Warren Savings Bank and was
one of its board of trustees from its organization,
and for many years was its vice-president and a
member of its board of investment. He served the
town as assessor and selectman, as tax collector
and town treasurer.

In politics Mr. Ramsdell was a Republican, but
not of a strictly partisan type, exercising his fran-
chise in the best interests of the community, county .
and commonwealth. Mr. Ramsdell supplemented
and broadened his early education by constant read-
ing and study. He was a man of large influence
among his fellow citizens, and commanded their
fullest confidence and respect. He died November

T 5, J905-

He married, October 12, 1859, Mary Makepeace,
daughter of the late Augustus Makepeace, of West
Brookfield. Their children are: Homer A., born
September 4, i860, died January I, 1883 ; Jennie M.,
born June 4, 1863, married George M. Faulkner,
treasurer of the Slater Engine Company of War-
ren; Mr. and Mrs. Faulkner have a son, Homer
Ramsdell Faulkner; Emma A., born May 27, 1869.
married Joseph D. Hastings, a well-known druggist
of Warren, and has a daughter, Elizabeth Stock-
bridge Hastings ; William B., born August 7, 1872,
died November, 1879.

CHARLES E. TROWBRIDGE. The name of
Trowbridge is of high antiquity in England as per-
sons bearing the name are found to have lived dur-
ing the reign of William the Conqueror. The first
of the name are found in Trowbridge, a market
town and parish in Wiltshire, England, which town
received its name from that of one of the family,
being their residence for many centuries and the
property of one of the name in the reign of Edward
I. The name of Trowbridge first appears in the
Doomsday book. Trowbridge formerly had a cas-
tle but no trace now remains. It was besieged by
Stephen about A. D. 1 135. A younger branch of the
Trowbridges settled in Somersetshire as early as
1541. They resided at Taunton in that county and
from this branch sprang the Trowbridges of Amer-
ica. That the Taunton family descended from that
of Wiltshire is sufficiently proven by their arms, pre-
cisely the same as those seen in the stained glass
window of the chancel of St. James' Church, Taun-
ton, England. (Copied from "History of Wood-
bun', Connecticut.") John Trowbridge, the grand-
father of the first settler in America, lived at Hut-
ton, Somerset county, England, and died there in
ii— 25



1575. In his will, dated February 17, 1575, he names
two sons, Thomas and Edmund, the former being
remembered to this day for his bequest to the poor,
the income of which is annually distributed in the
parish church of St. Mary Magdalen, at Taunton,
England. The latter, Edmund, was the father of
the emigrant ancestor, Tin anas. John Trowbridge's
will named as executor his two brothers, both named
Thomas and designated as Thomas, Sr., and Thomas,
Jr., after an idiotic custom of our English forefathers.
These cases of two sons of the same name living
at the same time are great sources of grief to the
genealogists of the present day. Edmund Trow-
bridge was given five silver spoons and a gold ring
by his father.

(I) Thomas Trowbridge, son of Edmund Trow-
bridge, mentioned above, was born in England, about
1610. He came from Taunton, Somerset-hire. Eng-
land, and settled in Dorchester, Massachusetts Bay
Colony, as early as 1636. His wife joined the
church there in 1636, and their son was born there
that year. He drew a lot of land January 2, 1637,
and at various times after that. Later in 1638 or
early in 1639, however, he removed to New Haven.
He was in the foreign shipping business and he
continued in business, making voyages between the
Barbadoes and England. He owned a house and lot
in New Haven as early as 1639, but was apparently
not living there. He and his wife and three chil-
dren were living there in 1643 and he was rated as
one of the richest men of the colony, paying taxes
on five hundred pounds. In 1644 Mr. Cheever, the
celebrated pedagogue, received payment for teach-
ing Trowbridge's children; evidently the children
were well educated for their day. He went to Eng-
land in 1044, leaving his three sons and all his
American property in charge of Henry Gibbons,
who proved unfaithful to his trust. Sergeant
Thomas Jeffries took the boys into his own family.
Thomas Trowbridge wrote often from England to-
have Gibbons brought to account, but without avail.
Even a power of attorney to his sons was not ef-
fective. Thomas Trowbridge died in Taunton, Eng-
land, February 7, 1672, and soon afterward Gibbons
gave to the sons a deed of everything he had, even.
to the bed he slept on, in an endeavor to make good,
the property of the family. When Gibbons died 111
1686 Thomas Trowbridge was apointed his adminis-
trator and recovered all there was left of his father's-
estate in New Haven. The sons of Thomas Trow-
bridge (1), were: Thomas, born 1632, at Taunton,
England; William, born 1634; James, born 1636, at
Dorchester, Massachusetts, see forward.

(II) Deacon James Trowbridge, third and
youngest son of Thomas Trowbridge (1). was born
at Dorchester, Massachusetts, in 1636, and baptized
two years later. In 1641 he removed with his father
to New Haven, Connecticut. He lived in New
Haven until nearly twenty-one years old, when he
returned to Dorchester and occupied the land his-
father had owned before removing to New Haven.
He removed in 1664 to Cambridge Village, now
Newton. Massachusetts. His wife Margaret, Thomas
Wiswan, Goodman Kinwright, were dismissed by the
Dorchester church, July 11, 1664, to the church gath-
ered at Cambridge Village. James Trowbridge was
elected deacon to succeed his father-in-law, in 1075.
and held that office forty-two consecutive years. In
1675 he bought of Deputy-Governor Danforth a farm
of eighty-five acres with house and other buildings
where the governor had lived several years, adjoin-
ing his farm, and the descendants of James Trow-
bridge have ever since kept in their possession a
considerable part of the original homestead in New-
ton. In the seventh generation the place was owned



3S6



WORCESTER COUNTY



by Nathan Trowbridge. He was selectman on the
very first board, elected August 2j, 1679, and served
nine years. He was clerk of writs 1692-93, lieu-
tenant of the military company, deputy to the general
court from 1700 to 1703. He made his will in 1709
and added a codicil in 1715 ; it was proved June,
1717. He mentions his rights in land at Dorchester
received from his father, Thomas Trowbridge. The
estate amounted to two hundred and forty pounds
and seven shillings.

He married Margaret Atherton, daughter of
Major-General Humphrey Atherton, December 30,
1659, and had seven children. She died August 17,
1O72. He married (.second) Margaret Jackson,
daughter of Deacon John Jackson, January 30,
1674. She died September 16, 1727, aged seventy-
eight years. Children of James and Margaret (Ath-
erton) Trowbridge were: Elizabeth, born October
12, 1060, married John Myrick ; Mindwell, born
June 20, 1662, married Jonathan Fuller; John, born
May 22, 1664, married Sarah Wilson ; Margaret,
born April 30, 1666, married Hon. Ebenezer Stone ;
Thankful, born March 4, 1668, married Deacon R.
Ward; Hannah, born June 15, 1672, married John
Greenwood. Children of James and Hannah (Jack-
son) Trowbridge were : Experience, born November
1, 1675, married Samuel Wilson; Thomas, born De-
-cember 4, 1677, married (second) Mary Goffe ;
(.third) Susanna ; Deliverance, born Decem-
ber 31, 1679, married Eleazer Ward; James, see for-
ward; William, born November 19, 1684. married
Sarah Ann Ward and (second) Sarah Fullam; Abi-
gail, burn April II, 1687, probably never married;
1 deb, born November 9, 1692, married Sarah
•Oliver and (second) Hannah Walter.

(III) James Trowbridge, son of James Trow-
bridge (2). was born at Dorchester, Massachusetts,
September 20. 1682, died August 21, 1714. aged
thirty-two years. His father deeded to him his
dwelling house and land, ninety acres, situate be-
tween land of Joshua Fuller and John Mirick. His
estate was valued in the inventory at seven hun-
dred and thirty-six pounds, fourteen shillings and
sixpence. He married, January 6, 1709, Hannah
Bacon; (second), 1712, Hannah Jackson. The chil-
dren of the first wife were: Margaret, born October
29, 1709, married Nathaniel Stowell ; Daniel, born
April 6, (711, see forward. The children' by the
second wife were: Hannah, horn 1713, married
Daniel Robbins ; Jemima, received a bequest in will
of grandfather, Abraham Jackson.

(IV) Daniel Trowbridge, son of Jomes Trow-
bridge (31. was born in Dorchester, Massachusetts,
April 6, 171 1, died there October 1, 1795. He set-
tled at Pomfret, Connecticut, and was a farmer. He
married Hannah Spring, at Newton, October 8, 1733.
She was the daughter of Ensign John Spring, of
Watertown. She died June 26, 1763. He married
(second), April 15. 1707, Jerusha Bow-en, widow,
who died June 27, 1791. Children of Daniel and
Hannah Trowbridge, born at Pomfret, were: Dan-
iel, Jr., born June 18, 1734, died 1744; Joanna, born
May 3. 1736, died August 5, 1741 ; Daniel, born July
30/1738; James, born February 15. 1740; John, born
April 11. 1742: Ephraim, born June 10, 1744; Han-
nah, born August 19, 1746, died October 19. 1748;
William, born May 1. 1748; Hannah, born February
19, 1752. married Philip Pearl, of Hampton; Caleb,
born December 27, 1754, see forward; Elisha, born
October 23, 1756.

(V) Caleb Trowbridge, son of Daniel Trow-
bridge (4), was born at Pomfret. Connecticut, De-
cember 27, 1754. His farm adjoined that of his
father. He died September 9, 1830. He married
Zylphia Barrows, who died October 3. 1803, aged



ninety-seven years, six months, one day. Their chil-
dren were : Artemas, born December 7, 1789; Maria,
born May 28, 1792, married Jerome Pike; Susannah,
born August 14. 1794, died December 4, 1805;
George, born August 11, 1798, see forward; Charles,
born 1801.

(VI) George Trowbridge, son of Caleb Trow-
bridge (5), was born at Pomfret, Connecticut, Au-
gust II, 1798. He was educated and brought up in
his native town. Before his marriage he entered the
mercantile business with his brother Artemas at
Camden, New York, where he lived the remainder
of his days. He married, September 29, 1829, Juliana
Allin, of Pomfret. Their children were: 1. Charles
Edward, see forward. 2. Julia Allen, born at Cam-
den, New York, January 20, 1833, married William
W. Chubbuck, of Hamilton, New York, who was
the youngest brother of Emily C. Judson, the wife
of Rev. Dr. Adoniram Judson, Baptist missionary
to Bunnah, India. Mrs. Judson was an authoress,
and wdiile employed as a teacher in the Utica Female
Seminary acquired a wide reputation under the
name of Fanny Forester. Mr. Chubbuck died sud-
denly of heart disease at Utica in 1861. In 1873
Mrs. Chubbuck w-as appointed a clerk in the inquiry
branch of the New York postoffice by Postmaster
Thomas L. James, and has served thirty-three years
continuously under the administrations of Postmas-
ters James, Pearson, Van Cott, Dayton and Wil-
cox. Mrs. Chubbuck's employment was in decipher-
ing illegible addresses arriving at the New York
postoffice and largely foreign letters, and millions
of people in the United States are indebted to her
skill and remarkable intuition, so that letters almost
illegible were sent to those for whom they were
intended and who otherwise would never have re-
ceived them. She died February 21, 1906. 3. Will-
iam Henry, born at Camden, January 4, 1836, is a
farmer at Camden ; was a soldier in the civil war
and participated in the battles of Ball's Bluff and
Chickamauga. 4. Elizabeth Pearce, born November
i~, 1837. married Jerome Pike and resides at Cam-
den, New York ; she was one of the compilers of
the "Pioneer History of Camden, New York," a
valuable reference book. 5. George Frederick, born
June 7, 1846, died June 25, 1871.

(Y1I) Charles Edward Trowbridge, son of
George Trowbridge (6), was born in Pomfret. Con-
necticut, February 3, 1831. He was educated in
Pomfret, where his younger days were spent with
his grandparents.. He learned the trade of machin-
ist at Whitinsville, Massachusetts. He was pro-
moted from place to place until he became the master
mechanic of the Whitinsville Cotton Company. In
1872 he made his first important invention. We
quote a sketch of it. "In 1872 Charles E. Trow-
bridge, master mechanic of the Whitinsville Cotton
Mill, and Arthur F. Whitin, who was then employed
in the repair ship, perfected and patented special
tools for making rings for spinning and twisting.
They began the manufacture of rings in 1873, under
the firm name of the Whitinsville Spinning Ring
Company. By their improved methods and tools
superior work is secured, and a great saving of
labor is effected. With the old method the ring is
passed through several hands and numerous opera-
tions, and the ring was not of such uniform ex-
cellence or finish. The company began the manu-
facture of rings for the cotton mills of Whitinsville
and vicinity, but the fame of their superiority soon
spread and arrangements had to be made for in-
creased production. The rings have been sent all
over the country and many have been exported.
The business has increased sixfold since 1878, but
its growth has been a natural one. Arthur F.



WORCESTER COUNTY



387



Whitin is treasurer; Charles E. Trowbridge is agent
.and George E. Trowbridge is superintendent. Mr.
Trowbridge has secured a number of patents on
rings and ring holders and has recently patented a
new process of producing a metallic ring, which ef-
fects a great saving of travelers, on now rings, .1
a much better yarn is produced by the consequent
saving of breakage. The company began the manu-
facture of the adjustable ring in 1886 and now pro-
duces all varieties of rings known to the trade.
The work began in the repair shop o.f the mill.' In
1884, needing more room, it was moved to the old
cotton mill built in 1886, on the south side of the
stream, and occupied the basement and first story,
in 1887 an enlargement of twenty by sixty-five feet
was made and a new building erected with a furnace
chimney for hardening and annealing. The success
of this concern has been due in a large measure to
the inventions of Mr. Trowbridge and his business
ability. Mr. Trowbridge has always been a pro-
gressive man as to village and up-to-date improve-
ments. He was greatly interested in electrical im-
provements of the place, being the first to install
electric lights and telephone in his home. He is an
active member of the Methodist Episcopal Church
at YVhitinsville, and a liberal supporter of that de-
nomination ; a member for nearly fifty years, filling
several of the important offices as trustee and stew-
ard. Much of the credit is due him for the successful
movement to pay off the Methodist Episcopal Church
debt at Webster Square, Worcester, Massachusetts.
The occasion of the burning of the church mortgage,
December 22, 1905, was one of great joy and satis-
faction to the people of this church and due credit
is given Mr. Trowbridge and the others who brought
about the payment of the debt. Mr. Trowbridge is a
member of no clubs or secret orders. He has al-
ways divided his time between business and home.
He is a Republican but has never held public office.

He married, September 29, 1850, Jane E. Bray-
ton, who died December 18, 1904. She was a native
of Pomfret, Connecticut. Their children are :
George E., see forward ; Lizzie Jane, born October
23, 1859, at Whitinsville..

(VIII) George E. Trowbridge, son of Charles
E. Trowbridge (7), was born at Pomfret, Con-
necticut, December 25, 1857. He was educated in
the public schools of Whitinsville and in the Eng-
lish & Classical high school of Providence, Rhode
Island. He entered the shop of the Spinning Ring
Company and early learned the business, and in a
few years became manager of the plant, a position
he still holds. In February, 1887, he married Ella
J. Johnston, of Whitinsville, daughter of James
Johnston. Previous to this he built a home in North
Uxbridge, where their two children were born :
Clara Fern, October 22, 1891, Ruth Elsbeth, July
18, 1894. In 1900 he built his present residence on
Maple street, North Uxbridge. He is independent
in politics and active in municipal affairs, having
been on various committees of the town, trustee of
the Thayer Memorial Library, trustee of the Whitins-
ville Savings Bank, member, trustee, and treasurer
of the vVhitinsvill'e Methodist Episcopal Church. A
man of high character, public spirit and business
ability.

JONATHAN DAVIS. George Davis (1), the
immigrant ancestor of Jonathan Davis, of Sterling,
Massachusetts, was one of the pioneers at Salem.
He was born in England and came to New England
when a young man. His name first appears on the
Salem records in 1641, although he was living ther .
-very likely, for four or five years before that. He
-was probably a weaver by trad . hut in 1



appears to have been a ship-owner or a part owner
111 shipping. He removed to Reading, where lie
was a proprietor in 1644. He was admitted a free-
man -May 26, 1047. He was a man of property and
influence. He was selectman of Reading.

He died at Cape Fear, July 14, 1007. on a voyage.
He made his will December 7, 1664; it was proved
September 30, 1667. He mentions his wife and son
Benjamin as executors; bequeaths what he has in the
ship and the weavers' looms to his son Joseph ; men-
tions five daughters under age; named brother Will-
iam Clark (.brother-in-law?), of Lynn, as one of the
overseers. His children: Benjamin, executor, re-
sided in Lynn ; Joseph, see forward ; Hannah, born
May 3, 1648, married, 1669, John Boutwell ; Sarah,
born October I, 1651 ; Elizabeth, born January 16,
1654, married 1678, Timothy Wiley ; Mary, born
January 16, 1657-58; John, born July 20, 1660, died
November 4, 1660; Susanna, born May 11, 1662.

(II) Joseph Davis, son of George Davis (1),
was born probably in Salem about 1640-46. He set-
tled at Reading, Massachusetts. But little is known
of him. He was doubtless a farmer of quiet disposi-
tion. The fact that his father willed his looms to
him indicates that he had learned the trade of weaver
and probably followed it in connection with his
farming. His children : Joseph, see forward ; Han-
nah, born 1672; Caleb (twin), born 1673; Joshua
(twin), born 1673, married, 1697, Rebecca Poor and
had — Ruth and Sarah Davis; Thomas, born 1676,
married Hannah Hartshorn.

(III) Joseph Davis, Jr., son of Joseph Davis
(2), was born in Reading, Massachusetts, about
1669-70. He married, June 18, 1691, Rebecca Pat-
ten, daughter of Thomas Patten. They settled in
Billerica, where he bought a lot May 10, 1693,
formerly belonging to John Poulters. It has been
known lately as the I. G. Kimball place and is lo-
cated on the north side of Andover street. He was
one of the twenty-two pew-holders in the Billerica
church in 1739-40. In 1699 he bought the Fox farm
of Mr. Daniels, agent of Thomas Cooper, and there,
nortn of Fox Hill, made his home on what is yet
known as the Davis place. He was deacon of the
church, prominent in town affairs, and was selectman
in 1720.

Children of Joseph and Rebecca Davis were :
Rebecca, born September 11, 1692, married. May
r 3. I/I3. Hezakiah Ballard, of Andover; Hannah,
born December I, 1694; Joseph, born November 3,
1697; Elizabeth, born November 6, 1699, married
Jacob French; Benjamin, born May 1, 1703; Mary,
born May 31, 1706, married Jonathan French;
Sarah, born May 1, 1709, married Josiah Bacon;
Susanna, born December 5, 1710, married Josiah
Baldwin ; Joshua, see forward ; Esther, born March
24, 1716, married, September 1, 1734, Samuel Par-
ker, of Andover; Thomas, born July 8, 1717, dis-
missed to the church at Mansfield, Connecticut.



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