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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Massachusetts. 1704, who married Hannah Clap,
born 1679, died 1761 ; John, mentioned below ; Ebe-
nezer, born May 19, 1691, at Dedham; Ezekiel, born
February 26, 1693-4, at Dedham ; Mary, married, at
Walpole, Joseph Morse, December 26, 1727.

(II) John Robbins, son of William Robbins (1),
was born about 1685. He married, April 4, 1709,
Hannah Clark, daughter of Joseph Clark, of Med-
field, an adjacent town to Walpole, where he had
been brought up. They settled for a time in Med-
field, where three of their children were born, and
then about 1712 settled in Attleboro, Massachusetts,
where he spent the remainder of his life. As heir
of his father-in-law he had land in New Medfield,
later called Sturbridge. While he was at Medfield
Mehitable Robbins, perhaps his sister, married, Oc-
tober 4. 1715, Timothy Morse, and Benoni Robbins
died there March 31, 1730-1. John Robbins deeded
land in Sturbridge to Hinsdale Clark in 1742 and
later to his two sons, Ichabod and Benjamin, who
made their home in Sturbridge.

The children of John and Hannah Robbins were:
Hannah, born in Medfield. May 16, 1709; Priscilla,
born in Medfield, September 12, 1710; John, born
October 4, 1712; Benjamin, mentioned below: Icha-
bod, received a deed from father and mother of
ninety-nine acres of land in Sturbridge, Lot No.
47, second division, April 10, 1759. The land was
bought by John Robbins of the other heirs of Cap-
tain Joseph Clark, of Medfield.

(III) Benjamin Robbins (usually spelled with
one "B"), son of John Robbins (2), was born about
1720, probably in Attleboro, Massachusetts. He set-
tled in Sturbridge on a farm granted originally to
his mother's father, Captain Joseph Clark, of Med-
field, and given to him by his parents by deed dated
December 30, 1746, and again by deed in 1753 of
more land in Sturbridge. He died in Sturbridge in
1793 and his will mentions his wife Elizabeth; six
children : his grandsons, Asa and Rufus, sons of
Rufus, deceased; his grandsons, Asa and Crispus
Harwood. He was a soldier in the revolution from
Douglas, a private in Captain Edward Seagraves'
company. Colonel Joseph Read's (twentieth) regi-
ment; also in Captain Samuel Lamb's company,
Colonel Nathaniel Wade's regiment in 1778 on the
Rhode Island alarm and probably other service.

The children of Benjamin and Elizabeth Rob-
bins: John; Ezekiel, mentioned below; Hannah,
married - — Clark; Sarah: Esther, married-



McKinstry ; Priscilla, married



Perry ; Rufus,



died about 1777, leaving sons Asa and Rufus, who
had guardians appointed in Worcester county;
a daughter who married Harwood.

(IV) Ezekiel Robbins. son of Benjamin Rob-
bins (3), was born in Sturbridge, Massachusetts,
about 1755-60 and settled there. Among his chil-
dren was Daniel I., born in Sturbridge, 1794.

(V) Daniel I. Robbins, son of Ezekial Robbins
(4), was born in Sturbridge, Massachusetts, in 1794.
He married Mary D. Clemence. who was born in
what is now Southhridge in 1796. He settled in
Charlton, Massachusetts, where some of his chil-
dren were born. The children of Daniel I. and
Mary D. Robbins were: Daniel S., born 1819;
Henrv M.. born 1822 : Peter C, mentioned below ;
Chloe A., born 1829; Rosetta H., born 1832; Elliot
H.. born 1836.

(VI) Peter C. Robbins, son of Daniel I. Rob-
bins (5), was born in Charlton, Massachusetts, in
1825. He was educated in the common schools and



320



WORCESTER COUNTY



learned the trade of carpenter. He married Susan
A. Barrett, of Charlton. He is living at Charlton,
The children of Peter C. and Susan A. Robbins
were : i. Emily, married Charles H. Prince, of
Charlton; 2. Lorenzo; 3. Caroline, married Cheney
Pike, of Charlton, and they have one son, Everett
E. Pike ; 4. Alonzo E., born July 27, 1863, married
Bessie Riggs, who was born in England; they have
two sons: Claude and Alfred; they reside in Charl-
ton; 5. Alanson P., twin of Alonzo E., mentioned
below ; 6. Gertrude.

(VII) Alanson P. Robbins, son of Peter C. Rob-
bins (6), was born in Charlton, Massachusetts, July
-7. 1863- He attended the public schools of his
native town. He worked one year in Ackers &
Taylor's mill at Charlton. At the age of eighteen
he began to learn the trade of carpenter with his
father. After two years he went to work for a Mr.
Tripp, of Spencer, a carpenter and builder, who had
the contract for the big shoe factory at Medway,
Massachusetts. He also worked for Mr. Tripp on
the Southbridge Congregational Church. He worked
for a time in 1884 and 1885 for M. L. Hall. He
then worked for a period of eight years for George
Kingston, builder and contractor. After working
for a time for William Thompson he started in busi-
ness for himself, and for the first year had a part-
ner and the firm name was Robbins & Dines. Since
that year he has been in business alone. Among
the buildings he has built are : The Hartshorn houses
on May and June streets ; residences of A. H. An-
thony and Miss Gardner, May street; residence of
W. E. Dodge, Freeland street; of Jerome C. Field,
Richmond Heights; of P. M. Pfaffman, Main street;
of A. A. Gordan, Jr., Montvale ; of E. H. Carroll,
Rutland Terrace; of Frank Harrington, Montvale;
the office building of the American Optical Com-
pany at Lonsdale, Rhode Island. He rebuilt and
made over the residence of Channing Wells at
Southbridge. He built the residence of B. W. Childs
on Westland street; of W. E. Turple, Pleasant
street; of George H. Ward, Pleasant street; of A.
P. Howarth, Oxford, Massachusetts; of J. C. Field,
Richmond Heights. He built a house and a stable
for Dr. J. T. Cronin, Holden street; residence of
Edwin Bartlett, Oxford; and for A. W. Stafford.
He built a mill for Andrew Howarth and son at
Rochdale, Massachusetts, three hundred and seventy-
two feet long and eighty-six feet wide, two stories
high and constructed of brick, cement and steel.
He rebuilt the firm's old mill and built forty tene-
ments for residence for the firm's employees. He
built an addition to the Edwin Bartlett Company's
mill at North Oxford, Massachusetts. Mr. Rob-
bins's office is at 452 Main street, Worcester.

He is a member of the various Masonic bodies
up to and including the thirty-second degree and
is well known among the Masons of this section.
He is a director of the Builders Exchange and of
the General Contractors Association. He is a mem-
ber of the Board of Trade.

He married, July 13, 1886, Mattie I. Acker,
daughter of Elbridgc and Mary (Gray) Acker, of
Charlton, Massachusetts. Their children: Ralph
A., born October 7, 1888; Gordon Harlow, born
October 21, 1901, died July 26, 1904; and Elizabeth
R., born December 19, 1903.

CALVIN DEWITT PAIGE. In all prosperous
communities there are individuals who take the
initiative in all measures looking toward the general
good, and who can be confidently relied upon to
wisely, judiciously and conservatively rise to any
emergency. Such men are almost invariably those
whose private interests are large and diverse and



impose the most taxing duties, and not infrequently
they are incumbents of offices involving the gravest
responsibilities and which they discharge with ef-
ficiency and integrity. There seems indeed no limit
to the capacity for mental effort of men of this
character, the backbone of our national business and
social fabric, and of this type is the gentleman whose
name forms the caption for this narrative.

Ancestrally he is a product of one of those early
English settlers who preferred the perils of a savage
infested wilderness to the endurance of religious
persecution, and who numbered among his posterity
those who early rose in revolt against British
tyranny, and were foundationally responsible for the
chain of great commonwealths which constitute the
greatest of nations.

The history of Hardwick, Massachusetts, reveals
especial historic interest attaching to the Paige fam-
ily, several of the later generations of which have
been residents of Southbridge.

(I) Timothy Paige, who was a prominent agri-
culturist of Hardwick in the colonial period, held
numerous public offices: he was an officer in the
patriot army during the war of the revolution, being
captain of a company of militia which he led to Ben-
nington in August, 1777, and to West Point in
1780.

(II) Timothy Paige was a conspicuous man in
public matters, serving as a representative to the
general court seventeen years successively, from 1805
to 1821, and a delegate to the constitutional con-
vention in 1820. He was a member of the com-
pany of "minute-men" who marched to Cambridge
upon the Lexington alarm, and served for short
periods several times during the revolution. He
died October 21, 1821.

(III) Timothy Paige was a lawyer of good stand-
ing in his profession, and of much literary taste.
He was the first town clerk of Southbridge. He
won enviable repute as a poet, and his poems were
published as written in the public journals and bore
the signature of "Jacques." The last poem he
wrote was published in the Massachusetts Spy
shortly after his death, November 17, 1822, entitled
"Farewell to Summer."

(IV) Calvin A. Paige was born in Southbridge,
Massachusetts, June 7, 1820, son of Timothy (3)
and Cynthia (Ammidown) Paige. His parents died
when he was but eight years of age, and after
their decease he made his home in the family of
his guardian, Dr. Samuel Hartwell. At thirteen he
entered the employ of Messrs. Plimpton and Lane,
as a clerk in their store in Southbridge. Two years
later he went to Northfield, Vermont, where for
about two years he was emplo5 - ed in the store of
Charles Paine, afterwards governor of Vermont,
and president of the Vermont Central Railroad Com-
pany. At the expiration of this period of time he
returned to Southbridge and was employed until
1S43 in the store of John Seabury & Co., then
one of the principal business enterprises of that
town. In 1844 he became clerk and bookkeeper
in the employ of the Dresser Manufacturing Com-
pany, and later was also practically the managing
and business agent of the company, conducting its
affairs safely and prudently, and with profit to its
owners. He became an owner of the stock of the
company, and after the mill was destroyed by fire
in 1870 sold the mill-site and water-power to the
Central Mills Company, of which his son is now
the head.

Calvin A. Paige was earnest and influential in
promoting town enterprises and improvements, and
uniformly advocated what ever tended to these re-
sults. He sustained the plan adopted to establish



WORCESTER COUNTY



321



the public library, and usually advocated the laying
out and grading of new streets, the building of
sidewalks, the lighting of streets and the intro-
duction of electric street lights, and was one of
the most influential workers in obtaining the town
hall building. In 1850 he was commissioned a notary
public by Governor Briggs. He was a leading mem-
ber of the town committee to oppose the division
of the town before the legislature of 1S54, and one
of its most zealous and effective workers in defeat-
ing that project. During the rebellion he was ap-
pointed United States enrolling officer for the town,
and in 18S3, by Governor Long, commissioner to
qualify civil officers, and was elected a member of
the house in the legislature of 1863. He was a
Republican in politics.

On May 9, 1843. Mr. Paige married Mercy
Dresser, of Charlton, daughter of Harvey Dresser,
by whom he had two children : Mary E., born
April 7, 1846, died September 2, 184S; and Calvin
DeYV'itt Paige, of whom later. Mr. Paige married
for his second wife Ellen Jane Scholfield, of Dudley,
February 20, 1856, by whom he had one son, Frank
S., born May 18, 1857, died April, 1891.

Calvin DeWitt Paige, only son of Calvin A.
Paige, was born May 20, 1848, in Southbridge,
Massachusetts, where he attended the public schools
and obtained his initial business training under his
father. He has been for a number of years treasurer
and general manager of the Central Mills Com-
pany, operating a leading cotton manufacturing in-
dustry of Southbridge established in 1863. He is
president of the Johnson-Colburn Company, which
conducts the leading department store of South-
bridge. He has been since 1898 president of the
Southbridge Savings Bank, a strong financial in-
stitution, incorporated in 1848. He is president
also of the Southbridge Water Supply Company and
the Worcester South Agricultural Society. He is
a director of the Southbridge National Bank, the
Southbridge Gas and Electric Company and a trustee
of Nichols Academy. He was one of the prime
movers in establishing and building the Southbridge
and Sturbridge Electric Street Railway, and served
as president of the company which operated it from
its incorporation until the absorption of the prop-
erty by the New Haven system.

Mr. Paige is a Republican of the stalwart type
and has given freely of his time, talent and means
towards the advancement of his party's interests
in town, county, commonwealth and nation. He was
chairrmn of Southbridge's board of selectmen in
1894- 1895. member of the legislature in 1878, as-
sistant secretary of the Republican state committee
for three years, and for two years chairman of its
finance committee, presidential elector for the state
of Massachusetts in 1904. He was a delegate to the
National Republican Convention, which at Chicago
in 1884 nominated James G. Blaine for the presi-
dency. He has long been considered one of the
most available men of his district for congressional
honors, a nosition which he would grace by virtue
of his ability as a public speaker, and to which he
could bring to bear rare business acumen and a
ready grasp of broad public questions. He is as
well a clear, forceful writer and has contributed
frequentlv to current journalistic and magazine
literature He is a member of the Home Market
Republic-"! Club and of the Cotton Manufacturers'
Association That Mr. Paige has proved abundantly
equal to the responsibilities of his multifarious trusts
is current history and sufficiently demonstrates his
value a^ a citizen. It is only fair to add that he
is ever in the forefront of those who generously
contribute to all worthy benevolent and beneficent
ii — 2r



enterprises. He has been since early manhood a
member of every important special committee ap-
pointed in Southbridge for contemplated expendi-
tures for public purposes, and many of the most
attractive and substantial improvements have been
in large measure due to his indefatigable individual
efforts.

Mr. Paige married. October 21, 1873, Ida Frances
Edwards, daughter of John and Mary E. (Irwin)
Edwards, of Southbridge. Two children were the
issue of this marriage : Mary Dresser, born No-
vember 16, 1874, died October S, 1895; and John E.,
born November 30, 1878. The family home in Main
street and the country place at Sturbridge are among,
the especially attractive residences of the locality.

John E. Paige, son of Calvin D. Paige, attended
the Hopkinson Preparatory School of Boston, from
which he was graduated in 1897, and then entered
Harvard College, graduated therefrom in 1901. He
then became connected with the Central Mills Com-
pany, and at present (1905) is serving as assistant
treasurer. He is a member of the Masonic fra-
ternity, in which he has attained the thirty-second'
degree, and a member of the Southbridge Club. He-
is a trustee of the Southbridge Savings Bank, a
director of the Southbridge National Bank, and of
the Masonic Building Association, and a Republi-
can in politics. On May 20, 1902, John E. Paige
married Sarah C. Chapin, daughter of Francis L.
and Sarah (Lawton) Chapin, and their children are:
Harvey Dresser, born October 29, 1903, and Calvin
DeWitt, born January 20, 1905, died September g,.
I90S-

JOHN SMITH. Robert Smith (1), the immi-
grant ancestor of John Smith, of Lunenburg, Massa-
chusetts, was born in England, 1623 or 1626, and was
settled in Boxford, Massachusetts, before 1661. He
was a rather quiet man and mentioned on the public
records only to show that he was friendly to progress
and the advancement of the settlement. He seems
to have led an uneventful but blameless life, and
died August 30, 1693, leaving an estate valued at
about two hundred pounds. He left no will ; his
son Samuel was appointed administrator October
3, 1698. He married Mary and their chil-
dren were : Phebe, born August 26, 1661 ; Ephraim,
October 29, 1663, ancestor of Prophet Joseph Smith,
the founder of the Mormon Sect — the Latter Day
Saints; Samuel, January 26, 1666; Amy, August
16, 1668; Sarah, June 25, 1670, died August 28,.
1673; Nathaniel, September 7, 1672; Jacob, see for-
ward ; Mariah, December 18, 1677.

(II) Jacob Smith, son of Robert Smith (1),.
was born at Boxford, Massachusetts, January 26,
1674. He settled in Boxford and his children were
all born there. He was a farmer. He married Re-
becca Symonds. Their children were : Rebecca, born
January 30, 1707-08, married, January 28, 1729-30,
John Dorman; Jacob, see forward; Joseph, born
May 23, 1713. married Sarah Warren, sister of
Keziah, who married his brother Jacob, of whom
later; Keziah, born April 30, 1716, married, August
5, 1736, Jacob Baker; Moses, born June 13, 1718;
Ruth, born September 21, 1721 ; Nathaniel, bom.
August S, 1724.

(III) Jacob Smith, Jr., son of Jacob Smith (2),.
was born at Boxford, Massachusetts, October 20,
1709. He and his brother, Joseph Smith, married
the Warren sisters, of Weston, and both settled in
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts. In 1746 he was living
in Worcester and most of his children were born in
that town, according to the records. When Keziah
was baptized in Shrewsbury, 1746. the residence of
the parents was given as Worcester. Jacob Smith



322



WORCESTER COUNTY



married at Weston, Massachusetts, November 23,
1738, Keziali Warren, of that town. She was the
daughter of Jonathan and Sarah (Whitney) Warren.
Jonathan was horn April 26. 1688, married, Novem-
ber. 1 7 1 _' ; was the son of Ensign John Warren and
wife, .Mary Brown, of Watertown. They were mar-
ried March 22, 1682-83, and John was born March
5. 1665 66. J he father of Ensign John Warren
was Daniel Warren, who married. December 10,
1650. Alary Barron; he was born 1628, the son of
the immigrant, John Warren, who came over in
and settled at Watertown, Massachusetts.
Keziah (.Warren) Smith owned the covenant in the
Shrewsbury church in 1739. and the records state
that she "had owned it at Weston when she dwelt
there." The children of Jacob and Keziah Smith
were: Ruth, born at Worcester, September 16,
l 739) Jacob, baptized March 29, 1741, born at Wor-
cester, March 17, 1741, died young; Joel, born at
Worcester, August 19, 1743; Keziah, born at Wor-

ter, November 10, 1745, baptized at Shrewsbury;
Jonathan Warren, see forward ; Solomon, born
March 18, 1749-50. recorded at Worcester; Joseph,
born at Worcester, June 2, 1752; Ithamar, born Sep-
tember 6, 1754; Levi (twin), born March 28, 1757;
Simeon, (twin) born March 28, T/57; Jacob, born
November 9, 1760.

(IV) Jonathan Warren Smith, son of J
Smith (3), was born at Shrewsbury. Massachusetts,
February 26, 1748. He removed from Shrewsbury
to Westminster, where he bought Lot No. 115 in
the second division, now known as the Nathan Wood
place on Br;gg Hill, and built the first house on it.
He removed to Hubbardston during the revolu-
tionary war and lived there the remainder of his
life. Three of his children were recorded in West
minster and the date of removal was about 1780.
He was a soldur in the revolution from Westminster
in Captain Jonathan Gates' company of Ashburn-
ham, an adjacent town, Colonel John Whitcomb's
regiment, on the Lexington alarm. Later in 1775 he
corporal in Captain David Wilder's company.
Colonel Asa Whitcomb's regiment. Some of the other
service ascribed to Jonathan Smith — a multitude of
whom served in the army — may belong to Jonathan
Warren Smith. He married Catherine Keyes, who
died March 20. 1S45, at Hubbardston, aged ninety-
seven years, five months. Their children were:
Westminster. March 14, 1775, married
Timothy Parker; Joel, see forward; Sophia, born at
Westminster, December 30. 1778, died April 3, 1795;
Lucy, born at Hubbardston, March 1, 1781, died
i : 86; Asa, born May 3, 1783, died Septem-
ber 2, 1786; Catherine, born January 16, 1786, mar-
ried Clark Witt; Betsey, born May 29, 1788, died
March 10, 1846; Ira, born January 25, 1791, died
Vugust iw, 1814.

i \ | Joel Smith, son of Jonathan Warren Smith
(4), and grandfather of John Smith, of Lunenburg,
was born at Westminster, Massachusetts, March 21,
1777. He wa^ a 5 iung child when the family re-
moved to Hubbardston, where he was brought up
and educated. He lived three miles southwest of
the middle town of Hubbardston. owning a fine hun-
dred-acre farm for which he paid only seven dollars
an acre. He followed fanning as an occupation all
his life. He was a member of the Orthodox Church
and was a Whig in politics. He trained in the
-tatc militia. He married Hannah Clark and their
children, all born in Hubbardston, were: Emery,
see forward; Almira, born June 28, 1806, married
Joshua Flagg; Emmons, born April 15, 1810, married
Catherine How, April 15, 1835; married (second),
January 20, 1842, Mary W. Davis; Lucy, born De-
cember 27, 1813, married Oliver Clark; married



(second) John M. Bradshaw ; Ira, born December

24, 1815, married Abigail Pratt, of Rindge, New
Hampshire; Jonas, born September 24, 1817, re-
moved to Connecticut and died in Kentucky, 1876;
Asa, born October 10, 1820, married Lucy Temple,
of Shrewsbury, died on his way home from Cali-
fornia in 1854; Levi, born June 8, 1824, re.ided in
Paxton, married (second) Sarah (Mason) Brooks;
Catherine, born October 9, 1826, married Franklin
Rockwood and resided at Brookline, New Hamp-
shire.

(VI) Emery Smith, son of Joel Smith (5),
was born at Hubbardston, Massachusetts, August
12, 1S04. He received the education common to the
farmer boy of those days and remained on his
father's farm until he was of age, when he left
home and found employment in Worcester as a brick-
maker. After a year or two he returned to his native
town and took up the trade of cooper in connection
with farm work. He made barrels for rum and
beef. Later in life he worked at the carpenter's
trade, and many of the bridges on the Fitchburg
Railroad were built by him. He also erected a num-
ber of houses, some of which he built for himself
and sold. He prospered in the building business.
About 1827 he removed to Lunenburg and lived
there the remainder of his life. He died November

25. i877' Lie was a Universalist in religion and
was connected with the choir of the church for many
years. He was a good singer and skillful player of
the bass viol and clarinet. He played the bass viol
in the church when it was the custom, and he ilayed
the clarinet in the village band. In politics Mr-
Smith was a Democrat.

He married, October 27, 1825, at Hubbardston,
Phebe Flagg, born September 17, 1801, daughter of
Levi and Ruth (Austin) Flagg. Her father w-as
born at Worcester, November 15, 1795, died October
25, 1847; he was a farmer and blacksmith, and served
on the Hubbardston school committee. Her mother
was born October 21, 1768, died March tS, 1848.
The children were : John, born at Hubbardston,
January 12, 1827, see forward; Lucy, born at Lunen-
burg, January 24, 1831, married Stephen Adams,
June 2, 1S40. and settled at Townsend, having no
issue.

(VII) John Smith, son of Emery Smith (6),
was born at Hubbardston, Massachusetts, January
12, 1827. When an infant he removed to Lunen-
burg with his parents. There he was educated in
the common schools and at Rollins Academy. Lie
worked with his father on the farm and helped him
cut off the timber from his place. He remained on
the homestead until thirty-seven years of age, when
he removed to Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire, to work
on the Blodgett farm. In 1876 he returned to
Lunenburg, where he bought his present farm of
seventeen acres, to which from time to time he has
added by purchase, especially of wood lots, until he
now has between four hundred and five hundred
acres of land in the best part of the town. He has
made a business of dealing in the wood cut from his
property, which is well situated near a good mar-
ket. In politics Mr. Smith is a Democrat. He has
been highway surveyor of the town. He attends the
Universalist Church.

He married, October 20, 1864, Caroline E. Ben-
nett, born December 6, 1820, died November 3,



Online LibraryEllery Bicknell CraneHistoric homes and institutions and genealogical and personal memoirs of Worcester county, Massachusetts, with a history of Worcester society of antiquity (Volume 2) → online text (page 94 of 133)