Ezra S Stearns.

Genealogical and family history of the state of New Hampshire : a record of the achievements of her people in the making of a commonwealth and the founding of a nation (Volume 4) online

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When the temperance cause was first agitated in
Chester, in 1829, he declined to enter into it, and
its interference with the social drinking custom was
one of his objections, but when he found that the
drunkards were citing him as an example, he aban-
doned the use of all intoxicating drinks, and was
a strong .and consistent advocate of total absti-
nence the rest of his life. He early became inter-
ested in the anti-slavery movement and aided in
forming a society in Chester in 1835, and continued a
firm advocate of the freedom of speech and the
press, and the same laws and privileges for both
white and black. He was not of robust physique,
being rather tall and slight of frame, yet he usually
was blessed with good health, doubtless resulting
largely from his active and temperate habits. He
did not complain of the pains usually incident to
old age, and sat up all the day before his death.
He was up and dressed the next morning, but soon
laid down and passed away as quietly as going to
sleep, March 16, 1852, lacking but three months of
ninety years. As showing the great vitality of the
family it can be said that the average age at death
of seven children was eighty-four years and two
months, and of nine, over seventy-six years, two of
the eleven children having lived but a short time.

The children by the first wife were : Moses and
Wells: and by the second: John, Stephen (died
young), Sarah, Benjamin, Molly and Pike; and by
the third : Anna and Stephen. (The last with de-
scendants is mentioned in this article).

(XI) Benjamin (7), sixth child and fifth son of.
Benjamin Pike and Anna (Blasdell) Chase, was
born in that part of Chester which is now Auburn,

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July 7, 1799, and died May 5, 1889, aged nearly
ninety. "The first twenty-six years of his life were
spent on his father's farm. His education, as stated
by him, was limited to about eight weeks each
winter, after the age of twelve, at the common
school, kept in a house fifteen by sixteen feet,
rough boarded and ceiled, with three windows of
nine panes each, a smoky chimney, and warmed
by burning green wood, which lay out in the snow
until needed. The writing desks were planks or
boards, one edge fastened to the wall of the house
and the other supported by legs inserted in auger
holes, and stools with legs for seats. Three terms
previousI}% in summers at private schools taught
by a woman, made up the sum of his school days.
Before going to any school he had of his own voli-
tion, and practically unaided, mastered the common
school arithmetic as far as the 'rule of three,' in
the absence of a slate, using a board and chalk." In
his reminiscences he writes further : "In 1816 I
borrowed from Stephen Chase, Esq., an English
work on Geometry, Trigonometry and Surveying,
and went through that in the school house, but
without a teacher, just for the pleasure of it and
without the least idea of any practical advantage.
I also studied navigation. In the summer of 1816
my brother John and my father had a controversy
on some point of astronomy, and to settle it
father went to Chester to the town library and got
Ferguson's Astronomy, which contained rules for
calculating new and full moons and eclipses. I
thought that it would be a pleasant thing to know
how to do it. From the tables certain elements are
obtained, and then a geometrical projection is made.
As the book must be returned I had to copy the
tables, and now have them. I calculated the eclipses
for several years, and have several of the pro-
jections now. I had no other instruments than a
two foot Gunter scale and a pair of brass dividers. ,
If I wished to draw a circle I had to tie a pan to
one leg of the dividers. These studies, pursued
merely for the pleasure of them, have proved of
great practical utility to me. In 1818 Stephen
Chase, who had done all of the land surveying for
many years, failed in health and I took it up and
did much for several years, which prepared me to
write and make the map for the History of Ches-
ter. These studies also prepared me to understand
the science of the millwright's trade."

His son writes of him : "Beinp- a descendant on
his mother's side of two generations of clock mak-
ers, he was a mechanic by inheritance. In 1825 he
found temporary employment as a millwright, which
led him into that line of business for the remainder
of his most active life, and during those years he
made many improvements in the sawmills and grist
mills that were in use preceding his time. He also
procured the necessary tools and finished the house
which became his residence on his marriage, and
was his home to the end of his life.

"When the story of the Chase fortune in Eng-
land was proclaimed, about 1846, Mr. Chase, though
giving no credence to the report, became interested
to look up the genealogy of his ancestry and the
different lines descending from Aquila. This he
made complete for his own line and collected much
more for connecting lines, making very thorough
search of real estate and probate records, and mak-
ing maps of old Newbury, Cornish, New Hamp-
shire, and other places, and thus locating the resi-
dences of many of the earlier generations. Dr. John
B. Chace, of Taunton, Massachusetts, did much
work in the same line at the same time, and the
product of their labors is now deposited with the

New England Historic-Genealogical Society in
Boston, awaiting a master hand to complete and
publish them.

"In 1864 he began the work of compiling the
History of Chester, New Hampshire, 1719-1869,
with a map of the original proprietors' lots, de-
voting to the work the time not occupied in his
regular vocation. This was published as a volume
of seven hundred pages in 1869, and is regarded as
one of the best of town histories.

"]Mr. Chase was a man of sturdy frame and great
earnestness of purpose. One of the rules of his life
was the scriptural injunction, 'Whatsoever thy
hand findeth to do, do it with thy might.' Another
was, 'I first endeavor to ascertain my duty and
then do it.' He knew no idle hours. Pushing his
business in working hours, he devoted all others but
those for sleep to intellectual and social enjoyment.
Though doing a great amount of laborious work in
his occupation as millwright, he so kept an even
balance of physical and mental effort, that his
strength was well preserved and his mind clear un-
til near the end, at two months less than ninety
years. Though mathematical and philosophical in
his tastes, his character was well rounded out by
the development of moral and literary qualities. In
his early manhood he heard a discourse on the sub-
ject of total abstinence from intoxicating liquors,
and at once not only adopted that principle in his
practice but confined himself mainly to water as a
beverage the remainder of his life.

"When the doctrine of immediate emancipation
of the slaves was proclaimed by William Lloyd Gar-
rison, it was embraced by Mr. Chase, as well as
that of non-resistance and woman's rights, and he
often contributed articles on those subjects to the
Liberator and the Herald of Freedom."

He married, March 2. 1826, Hannah Hall, who
was born February 18, 1789, and died February 25,
1876, aged eighty-nine years, daughter of Moses K.
and Lucretia (Currier) Hall, of Chester. Their
children were: Caroline, Louise and Benjamin.
Caroline (8), born September 14, 1828, married,
December 16, 1847, Charles, son of Joseph Chase.
(See Chase XI).

(XII) Benjamin (8), son of Benjamin (7) and
Hannah (Hall) Chase, was born August 18, 1832.
He grew to manhood on the paternal estate in Au-
burn, attending the district school in his boyhood
and youth. Subsequently he attended for several
winter terms a select school at Lee, ^ New Hamp-
shire, where he profited by the instruction of that
magnetic .and progressive educator, the late Moses
A. Cartland. With only brief interruptions he
aided his father in the work upon the home farm
and in the millwright business until his twenty-first
year. Early recognizing his distaste _ for agricul-
tural pursuits he was encouraged by his father in a
free use of the mechanical tools in the home work-
shop, and developed much skill in that line so that
at the early age of fifteen he began to engage in
mechanical work by the day. At the termination of
his period of schooling he gratified the cravmg to
go to sea that is felt by many a country lad and
made a voyage before the mast from Boston to
Mobile, Alabama, and thence to Liverpool, England,
which experience he now considers was a very
practical and beneficial graduation into life's higher
school. On his return he continued _ further me-
chanical service in conjunction with his father un-
til 1855, after which he was employed as a mill-
wright in various textile manufactories in New
Hampshire and Massachusetts until 1867, when he
laid the foundation of a manufacturing business



in Derry which has had an unpretentious but uni-
form and sound growth, and at the end of nearly
forty years' occupation of its distinctive field has
been recently incorporated as The Benjamin Chase
Company, its progenitor being the president of the
company. As a manufactory of certain specialties
in wood it is the largest and best equipped con-
cern in existence with a world-wide demand for its
products, and the intricate and delicate_ pieces of
mechanism which make up the plant's installation
are the creation of the proprietor's inventive gen-
ius and industry, being all the product of his own
brain. Of Mr. Chase personally it can be said with-
out exaggeration that he would be a man of note
in any community on account of his varied abili-
ties, his sterling characteristics and his works in
every good purpose. A man of extremely retiring
disposition and averse to office-holding he is never-
theless sought out by his townsmen for counsel
and suggestion in matters of public concern and is
extensively known throughout southern New
Hampshire. Of late years he has spent the winter
months in travel, Havana, Alaska, the Orient and
Mexico having been visited, and the rewards of an
active and well-spent life are now being enjoyed.
He married, June 17, 1875, Harriett Davenport,
daughter of Jared and Thankfull (Story) Fuller, of
Dunbarton, who was born August 8, 1833. They
have one daughter, Harriett Louise, born January
22," 1881. She is a graduate of Abbott Academy,
Andover, IMassachusetts, in the class of 1903, mar-
ried Dr. Charles E. Newell, of Derry, January 22,
1907, and resides in Derry.

(XI) Stephen, oldest child of Benjamin Pike
and Mary (Chase) Chase, his third wife, was born
in Chester, now Auburn. New Hampshire, August
30, 1813. As a boy he was exceedingly precocious,
learning the alphabet before he was two and one-
half years old, and at four years having read
through the New Testament. At the age of twelve
he was sent to the Pinkerton Academy at Derry,
which was then under the charge of Preceptor Abel
F. Hildreth, a most thorough instructor. When fit-
ted for college he, on account of his youth, re-
mained at home on the farm a year or two before
resuming his studies, and finally at the age of six-
teen entered the sophomore class at Dartmouth
College, and graduated in 1832. He entered the
Theological Seminary at Andover, Massachusetts,
but soon engaged in teaching in Virginia, where he
remained a year, going thence to Baltimore, Mary-
land, for the year 1834. He then accepted a situa-
tion in the academy at Gorham, Maine, from whence
he returned to the Andover Seminary, but after a
brief stay accepted the appointment as principal of
the academy at South Berwick, Maine, where he
first met the young lady who later became his wife.
In the spring of 183S he was appointed tutor in Dart-
mouth College, and in June of the same year profes-
sor of mathematics, which position he held until liis
death. Although mathematics was his profession
and his favorite science, he was well versed in sev-
eral languages, as well as the various subjects under
discussion in the scientific world. In religion he
was orthodox without austerity, bigotry or supersti-
tion, being ready to examine any subject and to re-
ceive whatever there was evidence to sustain. He
early engaged in the temperance and anti-slavery
reforms. He had a great thirst for knowledge for
its own sake and had a mind to grasp whatever
came within its reach. He was of a very social
nature, and won the esteem of all who knew him.
Though rather frail in constitution he had, by

judicious care, maintained a good degree of health
until in the later years. In addition to his duties
he had prepared a treatise on algebra which was pub-
lished in 1849 and used as a text book in the col-
lege for many years. By this extra work he had
run too near the margin of his strength. His
health failed several months before his death, but
though no serious apprehension was felt as to the
immediate result, the vital forces failed and he
died, suddenly to his friends, and lamented by all
who knew him, January 7, 1851. He married Sarah
Thompson, daughter of General Ichabod Goodwin,
of South Berwick, Maine, August 31. 1838. She
was born December 8, 1809, and died August 17,
1890. They had two sons : Frederick, born Sep-
tember 2, 1840, and Walter Wells, born May 28,

(XII) Frederick, oldest child of Stephen and
Sarah T. (Goodwin) Chase graduated at Dart-
mouth College in i860. He was assistant professor
of chemistry for a short time, and then taught
school in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Returning to
Hanover, he read law in the office of Daniel Blais-
dell, Esq., until his appointment to a position in the
second auditor's office in the United States treas-
ury in 1861. In August, 1864, he was transferred to
the office of the secretary of the treasury. In Octo-
ber, 1866, he began to attend the Columbia College
Law School in Washington, and graduated in June,
1867, with the degree of LL. B. and took up the
practice of law in Washington. In the spring of
1874 he returned to Hanover, where he resided until
his death, January 19, 1890. He was elected treas-
urer of Dartmouth College, and was appointed
judge of probate for Grafton county in 1876. both of
which positions he held during the remainder of his
life. He was also a director in the Dartmouth Na-
tional Bank and a trustee of the Dartrnouth Savings
JBank, and a member of the constitutional conven-
tion of 1889. He delivered the historical address at
the centennial of the Phi Beta Kappa Society of the
college in 1887. He was greatly interested in local
history, and had been engaged for several years in
the preparation of a "History of the Town and Col-
lege," a labor which he prosecuted with zeal and en-
thusiasm. The first volume was practically corn-
pleted and appeared soon after his death, and is
considered a work of rare excellence and a monu-
ment to the indefatigable and thorough work of the
author. It is a source of great regret that the un-
timelv end of the author left the second volume in-
complete. He married, November 9, 1871, Mary
Fuller Pomeroy, of Detroit. Michigan, daughter of
Dr. Thomas Fullet and Mary Anne (Hoadly)
Pomeroy. They had six children: George Hoadly
(died young), Stephen, Theodore. Mary Hoadly,
Frederick and Philip Hartley. The sons are all
graduates of Dartmouth College, the alma mater of
their grandfather and father. Stephen gained the
championship of the world in high hurdling while
in college.

(VII) Samuel, fourth son and child of Moses
(2) and Ann (Follansbee) Chase, was born May 3,
1690, in Newburv, and died there July 24, 1743.
He was married December 8. 1713, to Hannah Em-
erv, and they had eight children, namely: Francis,
Amos, Hannah, Mary (died young), Anna, Samuel,
Marv and Betty.

(VIII) Francis, eldest child of Samuel and
Hannah (Emery) ' Chase, was born in Newbury,
August 18. 1715, and died in Newtown. He married
Sarah Pike, and settled in Newtown (now Newton,
New Hampshire), at that time a frontier settle-





ment. They had twelve children : Hannah, Sam-
uel, Amos, Francis, Joseph, Abner, Simeon, Sarah,
Betty, died young, Daniel, Betty and Ruth.

(IX) Colonel Samuel, eldest son and second
child of Francis and Sarah (Pike) Chase, was born
in Newbury in 1739, and settled in Litchfield, New
Hampshire, and died there May 17, 1816. He was
a distinguished citizen of Litchfield. He was select-
man of that town 1768-69-75-76-77-83 and 1787, and
every following year to 1795, inclusive, making a
service of fifteen years in all. He was a delegate to
the provincial congress in 1775, and a representative
in 1780. He was a lieutenant of the militia in
1775, and soon afterward was captain of the Litch-
field company, but the dates of his commissions are
not preserved. December 11, 1776, Captain Sam-
uel Chase was promoted to major of the Sixth
Regiment, of which Moses Nichols, of Amherst,
was the colonel. In 1777, for the relief of Ticon-
deroga, Captain Daniel McQuaid led a company of
volunteers, and among them was Major Samuel
Chase, as appears on payroll, but the fact is when
Captain McQuaid reached home two days later,
there was a second alarm, and Major Chase with
a few men marched to Charlestown, where they
were ordered home. In 1778 he served as major
in Colonel Kel ley's regiment, which was in serv-
ice in Rhode Island. December 25, 1784, Samuel
Chase was commissioned lieuenant-colonel of the
Fifth Regiment of militia, of which Noah Love-
well was colonel. January 25, 1790, he was com-
missioned colonel of the Fifth Regiment. March
19, 1791, his resignation was accepted by the gover-
nor and council. April 12, 1781, the committee of
safety, representing the legislature, appointed Lieu-
tenant Colonel Chase an agent to rent and have
custody of the confiscated lands of tories of Hills-
borough county. He filled this position several
years. He married, November 1760, Mary Stewart,
of Newton, New Hampshire, and they were the
parents of the following named children : Samuel,
Ebenezer, Daniel, Robert, Polly, died young, Fran-
cis, died, young. Francis, Polly, Simeon and Anna.

(X) Major Francis, sixth son and seventh child
of Colonel Samuel and Mary (Stewart) Chase,
born in 1775, and died in Litchfield in September,
1854, was a store keeper, miller and farmer. He
married, 1813, Dorothy Bixby (see Bixby VII),
born October 16, 1777.; died October 9, 1861. They
left the following children : Lydia, Samuel, Francis
and Margaret, whose sketch follows.

(XI) Margaret, second daughter and fourth
child of Francis and Dorothy (Bixby) Chase, was
born in Litchfield, in 1819, and died September 20,
1899, aged eighty years. She married, December
29, 1843, Isaac McQuesten (see McQuesten V).

(XI) Samuel, youngest child of Major Francis
and Dorothy (Bixby) Chase, was born in Litch-
field, August 29, 1815. He was educated in the
district schools and at Hopkinton Academy, and
taught school winters for a time. He also worked
on the river, was a lumberman, and later owned
and tilled a farm. He was a Democrat in poli-
tics, and was representative in the New Hampshire
legislature two terms from Litchfield and once from
Nashua and was a rnember of the Constitutional
convention of 1876. and was also selectman in
Litchfield. He married. December 2, 1849, Susan
White, born in Litchfield, April 24. 1825, daughter
of John and Susanna (Dickey) White, of Litchfield.
They had seven children. The first died in infancy,
unnamed. Addie M. married Frank Mitchell, of
Manchester, and lives in California. Margaret A.
married David S. Leach, of Litchfield. Mary W.,

died young. En-jest S. married Lula Colony, and
lives in California. John W. married Gertrude
Russell, of Lewiston, Maine, and lives in Wor-
cester. Massachusetts. Charles H. is unmarried ;
and now lives with his mother, and is engaged
in the milk business. Samuel Chase died January
27, 1882.

(VII) Joseph, eight child and sixth son of
Moses (2) and Ann (Follansbee) Chase, was born
September 9, 1703, in Newbury, Massachusetts, now
West Newbury, and lived on the west half of the
homestead farm. He was married September 7,
1724. to Mary Morse, who died in 1792 (see Morse,
(III). Mr. Chase passed away in November, 1784.
aged eighty-one years. He was the father of ten
children. (Mention of his tenth child, Moody, and
descendants follows in this article).

(VIII) Jacob, eldest son of Joseph and Mary
(Morse) Chase, was born December 25, 1727, in
Newbury, now West Newbury, Massachusetts. In
1751 he settled on additional lot No. 52 in Chester,
New Hampshire, and became an active and prom-
inent citizen of the town. He served often as mod-
erator of the town, and was very active during the
Revolutionary period. One item of credit in the
selectmen's account for 1780 is the record of a gift
to the town by Jacob Chase, Esq., of one hundred
and fift} - seven pounds and ten shillings. He mar-
ried, Noverhber 7, 1751, Prudence, daughter of Ben-
jamin (i) and Rebecca (Ordway) Hills. She was
born February 12, 1726, and died May i, 1775, leav-
ing children. Sarah, Stephen and Josiah. He mar-
ried (second), Dolly Colby, widow of David
Worthen. She died in 1815.

(IX) Sarah, daughter of Jacob and Prudence
(Hill) Chase, became the wife of Moses Richard-
son (see Richardson, V).

(IX) Stephen (5), second child and elder of the
two sons of Jacob and Prudence (Hills) Chase, was
born March 27, 1759, and died February 18. 1819.
He succeeded to the homestead where his father
had lived. Benjamin Chase, in his "History of
Chester," says of him : "Stephen Chase, Esq., came
on the stage of active life about the time that Sam-
uel Emerson. Esq.. left it, and in some respects
filled about the same sphere. He was noted as a
land surveyor for more than thirty years, and
made the survey and plan of Chester for Carrigan's
Map, which is remarkably accurate. He wrote a
very large portion of the deeds and wills, and ad-
ministered on the estates of his time, and held the
office of selectman many years. In Esquire Emer-
son's day, he was a kind of oracle, and nearly all
the small disputes were referred directly to him.
But things changed, and in Esquire Chase's day
there was more litigation, and he was the justice
to try the causes, or one of the arbitrators. Al-
though not a finished workman, he had quite a me-
chanical genius, making carts, plows and other
tools, and plastered houses. From 1784 to near his
death he kept a diary, filled largely with his la-
bors on the farm, and other business, which shows
him to have been a very industrious man ; and in
it are also entered the births, marria.ges and deaths
and many of the interesting events of the time, from
which I have drawn many facts otherwise lost."
He married. January 3. 1787, Rhoda Blake, of
Hampton, who died in Chester, August 15. 1845.
They had ten children : Susanna. Joseph. Stephen,
Polly, Jacob. Dolly. Rhoda, Sally (died young),
Sally and Henry Franklin. The last named re-
ceives mention below in this article).

(X) Joseph (6), second child and eldest son of
Stephen and Rhoda (Blake) Chase, was born Au-



gust 2, 1789, and died September 14, 1841. He fol-
lowed agriculture, and resided in Chester. He mar-
ried, November 4, 1817, Mehitable, daughter of
Major Benjamin and Nabbe (Emerson) Hall. She
was born January 6, 1794, and died June 4. 1882.
Seven children were born to them :

(XI) Charles (7), second son and child of Jo-
seph (6) and Mehitable (Hall) Chase, was born
on his father's farm in Chester, December 14, 1820,
and died May 17, 1892. He was an intelligent and
successful farmer, a man of sound judgment whose
advice was much sought, an upright and strictly
temperate man and a highly esteemed citizen. He
was a staunch Republican but not a politician. Al-
though of a retiring disposition he was elected
selectman many times and was chairman of the
board for five years. He married, December 16,
1847, Caroline Chase, who was born September 14.
1828, eldest child of Benjamin and Hannah (Hall)
Chase (see Chase, XI). She died August 11, 1849,
leaving an only child, John Carroll, whose sketch
follows. His second wife was Amelia J. Under-
hill and the third Amanda Underbill, daughter of
John and Molly (Chase, 7.) Underbill, of Auburn.
By them he had five children, the youngest and
only surviving one being Charles B. (8), born July
II. 1867, now a resident of Derry and officially con-
nected with The Beniamin Chase Company.

Online LibraryEzra S StearnsGenealogical and family history of the state of New Hampshire : a record of the achievements of her people in the making of a commonwealth and the founding of a nation (Volume 4) → online text (page 17 of 149)