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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Hampshire. Harvey Dow graduated from Bowdoin
College in 1902. He entered the employ of the
American Express Company, and was soon after-
ward made financial agent for the provinces, and is
now assistant financial manager with jurisdiction
over New England.

(IV) Arrington, sixth son and eight child of
Deacon Timothy Gibson, was born in 1717, and did
not remove with his father to Henniker.

(V) Thaddeus. son of Arrington Gibson, was
horn in or near Stowe, in 1/57, and was a soldier in
the revolution. He settled in that part of Warner,
New Hampshire, known as Peabody Pasture Parade,
liut remained there only a short time. He lived for
a time in IMilford, and removed thence in 1783 to
Henniker, and settled on the border of what was
than an almost unbroken wilderness. Being strong,
athletic and resolute he did much towards bringing
that portion of the township under cultivation. He
died February 23, 1834. The church record of Mil-
ford shows that he came to reside in that town
January 10, 1772, accompanied by his wife Elizabeth,
and two children. She died March 17. 1819, and he
was married March 30, 1831, to Lydia,Kent. His
children were: Lewis, Polly and Nahum.

(VI) Polly, only daughter of Thaddeus and Eliz-
abeth Gibson, was born in 1780. and became the wife
of John Whitcomb (see Whitcomb HI).

(IV) Emma B., youngest daughter of Mark and
Abigail (Leighton) Demeritt, became the wife of
Edward P. Hodsdon, now of St. Louis (See Hods-
don VIII).

This name is an unusual one in
DEMERITT America, and seems to be confined

to the neighborhood of Dover,
Durham and Madbury, New Hampshire, and to set-
tlers who have gone forth from those regions. With-
out doubt all of the family are descended from Elie
or Ely de Merit, a Huguenot refugee, who came to
this country from the Isle of Jerse3^ shortly after
the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and had a
grant of land in the township of Dover, New Hamp-
shire, April II, 1694. He married as early as 1695,
Hopestill or Hope , and died about 1747, leav-
ing five children. His will seems to indicate that he
had an estate in the Isle of Jersey, where the family
had first {aken refuge. The eldest son of the pio-
neer was Eli Demerit, born March i, 1696, who
lived both in Durham and Madbury, and received the
grant of the township of Peeling, now Woodstock,
this state, in 1763. His eldest son, Captain Samuel
Demerit, served in the Colonial wars. The present
line is undoubtedly derived from this stock, but the
connecting links are lacking.

(I) Major John Demeritt was born in Madbury,
New Hampshire, and carried powder to the Ameri-
can troops at Bunker Hill, afterward serving
through the Revolution.

(II) Paul, son of Major John Demeritt, was
born at Madbury, New Hampshire, and married
Betsey Davis, of the neighboring town of Lee. by
whom he had four children : The youngest, Mark,
is mentioned below.

(III) Mark, 3'oungest of the four children of
Paul and Betsey (Davis) Demeritt, was born at
Farmington, New Hampshire, June 6, 1792. and died
November 3, 1876. In 1817 he married Abigail Leigh-
ton, who was born at Farmington in 1799. They had
ten children: Four of whom are now living: Mar-
tha F., Joseph L., Lois S... and Emma B.

The possession of a family record ex-
FISHER tending several generations beyond the

emigrant ancestor, shows that this fam-
ily was one of intelligence and prominence. The
record its members have made in New England
shows that the Fishers have been an intelligent, ac-
tive, brave and energetic family, holding leading po-
sitions in the localities where they lived. Their
Revolutionary record shows the Fishers of that day
to have been courageous men thoroughly imbued
with the desire for civil liberty, just as the first
"settlers" had been imbued with a desire for liberty
to worship God as they chose. Their monuments
are the records which as citizens they have left,
and they made substantial improvements upon the
property they have held, much of which they hewed
out of the imtroddcn wilderness.

(I) Anthony Fisher lived in the latter part of
Queen Elizabeth's reign, in the parish of Syleham,
county Suffolk, England, on the south bank of the
Waveney river, which separates Suffolk from Nor-
folk, on a freehold estate called "Wignotte." His
wife was Mary, daughter of William and Anne
Fiske, of St. James, South Elsham, county Suft'olk
— an old Puritan family of that county, which had
suffered during the religious persecutions of Queen
Mary's reign. The parish record of Syleham con-
tains several references to Anthony Fisher and
his descendants which are annexed in the language
of the records, namely: Anno Domini 1585, Joshua
Fysher et Maria Fysher, Gemini baptisandi fuer
24th die Februarii ano Super dicto.

Anno Domini 1591. Antonius Fysher bapt. erat
23 Aprilis anno sup. dicto.

Anno Domini 1599. Cornelius Fysher the sonne
of Anthonye Fisher was bap. the six daye of

Anthony Fysher was buried the eleventh day of
April, 1640.

Anno Domini 1621. Joshua Fysher, the sonne of
Joshua Fysher, was baptized on the ii daye of

Anno Dom. 1633. Amos Fysher and Anne Lord
were married September 24.

Joshua F"ysher and Anne Luson were married
7th February, 1638.

This Anthony F'isher, of Syleham, had four
sons and two daughters as appear from the record :
Cornelius, Joshua. Anthony, Amos, Marie Brigge
and Martha Bucingham.

(II) Anthony (2), son of Anthony (i) Fislier,
of Syleham. county Suffolk, England, was baptized
there April 23, 1591. He came to New England with
his first wife Mary and children, probably from
Yarmouth, in the ship "Rose," arriving in Boston,
June 26, 1637. and settled in Dedham. He subscrib-
ed to the bedham Covenant, July 18, 1637. January
I, 1638, he was one of the committee "Chosen to
continue the Fabricke of a Meetinghouse." On
July 28, 1638. he was assigned his house lot : "An-
thony Fisher twelve Acres more or lesse made vp
good by an inlargnmt Runs in amongst the Rockes,
Sz for Woode & timbr as it lyeth betweene Mr. John
Allin through out towards the South & Thomas
Wighte through out towards the North. And abutts
vpon the Waest towards the Least & the Waest in
the Rockes towards the Waest the limitts marked
& doalcd accordingly," and other parcels of land.



He bought a farm of one hundred and fiftj- acres, a
house lot and other lands in Dcdharn.of the estate
of Samuel Cooke, of Dublin, October 19, 1652.

Anthony's wife Mary joined the Dedham Church,
March 27, 1642, but he was not "comfortably receiv-
ed into the church," "on account of his proud and
haughty spirit" until March 14. 1645. He was made
a freeman, May, 1645, was chosen selectman of Ded-
ham "to act in town affaires" in 1646-47, county
commissioner, September 3, 1660, a deputy to the
general court, March 21, 1649, and was woodseve
in 1653-54-55-57-58-61-62. He was chosen com-
missioner, March 5. 1666, and selectman of Dorches-
ter, December 5, 1664, December 4. 1665, and Decem-
ber 3, 1666. From a minute bearing date March 9,
1652, it is inferred that he gave the bulk of his
property to his sons and they bound themselves to
support their mother if she were left dependent.
The inventory of his estate, showing only personal
property in Dedham and Dorchester, was presented
July 26, 1671. He died at Dorchester. "Mr. .An-
thony Fisher Departed out of this life in the 8oth
year of his age (April 18), 1671." "In Anthony
Fisher we find an Englishman of strong, positive
points of character, with" liberal means for the
times, of favorable consideration by his fellow-set-
tlers as a citizen."

The time of the death of his wife ^Nlary is un-
certain; he married again "the 14th of (9 mo:)
1663," Isabell, widow of Edward Breck, of Dor-
chester (who had died November 2, 1662), "She
being by her first marriage the widow of John Rig-
ben, and probably the latter's second wife ; Anthony
"being at the time of the marriage about "/i years
of age." His widow, "The Widow Fisher Depart-
ed this life the 22d (010:4) called June, 1673." His
children, all by the first wife and born in England,
were : Anthony, Cornelius, Nathaniel, Daniel, Lydia
and John.

(HI) Anthony (3), eldest child of Anthony (2)
Fisher of "Dorchester." came with his parents to
New England and settled in Dedham, 1637 '> ^'^^ a
member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery
Company in 1644; made a freeman Alay 6, 1646,
and joined the Dedham church July 20, 1645. He
was chosen surve3-or of Dedham. 1652 to 1654: in
1652 he settled the estate of Henry Brookes; Feb-
ruary 3, 1652, Anthony was one of those appointed
to capture wolves at ten shilling for each wolf
killed, and May 5. 1662, Dorchester "voted whether
Anthony Fisher shall have four ponds allowed out
of the town rate for killing six wolves ; the vote
was afiirmative."

, Anthony Fisher, Jr., and Samuel Fisher were
among the first to go to Wollomonopoag (Wrcn-
tham) in 1661, and to claim part of the six hundred
acres for the encouragement of the plantation. An-
thony being one of the committee of Dedham Pro-
prietors who were assembled January 12, 1662. to
look into the matter and reported "they have secur-
ed but ten men, and they cannot go with so small a
company — 'that they are not desirous to leave the
world altogether,' as they put it, but will go if they
can 'proceed in a safe way.' " Anthony located his
improvements upon the easterly and southeasterly
side of Whiting's Pond or the Great Pond, but their
houses (his and those of others) were some dis-
tance from the pond, probably on what is now
Franklin street and on South street. In

1688 there were but thirty-six taxpayers living in
Wrentham. Novemljer 6, 1664. he was sent from
Dedham to view the land "about u or 14 miles
from Hadley," Pocomptuck. the land which Ded-
ham took instead of that Avhich it claimed at Na-

tick, and in 1669 Anthony received one hundred
and fifty acres there for his part in surveying the
grant. November 8, 1669, he was one of those who
went and treated with Philip Sagamore and bought
the land at Wrentham.

Anthony's name first appears in the records as
paying the town and county rate in 1648. Soon
thereafter he rented land of Governor Stoughton,
and on "ye 6th of ye nth mo. 1651. (January 6.
1652) he paid his annual rent in 5 bushels of Indian
Corne 0-15-0." Each year thereafter he came before
the selectmen of Dedham and paid the rent due. He
was assessed for ninety-five pounds, ten shillings,
February 20, 1657. The history of Dorchester says
Anthony, Jr., was selectman of Dorchester in 1664.
We learn that Dorchester "paid Anthony Fisher ii,.
los. for printing the catechism," prepared by Rev.
Richard Mather, the pastor. Anthony probably lived
just previous to his death, on the land bought of Mr.
Stoughton. situated near the Neponset river, but
within the bounds of Dorchester. The inventory of
his estate made April 7, 1670, includes "Houses and
lands thereof belonging in Dedham," ^40; lands
purchased of Mr. Stoughton and other landed prop-
erty the total being three hundred and fifty-nine
pounds, five shillings, two pence.

Anthony Fisher married, in Dedham, September
7. 1647, Joanna, only daughter of Thomas and
Joane Faxon, of Braintree. Anthony died February
13. 1670. and his wife died October 16, 1694. Their
children were : Mehitable, Experience, Josiah, Abiah,
Sarah. Deborah, Judith, and Eleazer.

(IV) Eleazer, youngest son of Anthony (3) and
Joanna (Faxon) Fisher, was born in Dedham,^
September iS, 1669, and died there February 6, 1722.
The* size of the appraisement of his property at his
death, six hundred and sixty-five pounds, indicates
that he was a prosperous man of substance. He
married, in Dedham, October 13. 1698, Mary, daugh-
ter of William and Mary (Lane) Avery, born in
that town August 21, 1674. and died in Stoughton',
Alarch 25. 1749. Her father, William Avery, was
baptized October 27, 1647, in the parish of Brek-
ham. near Oakingham, a market town in county
Berks. England, and was the son of the immigrant.
Lieutenant William Avery, also a physican. The
children of Eleazer and ]\Iary were : Eleazer, Wil-
liam, Jemima, David, Ezra. Nathaniel, Mary, Eze-
kiel. Timothy, Stephen and Benjamin,

(V) David, third son of Eleazer and Mary (Av-
ery) Fisher, was born in Dedham, June 21, 1705.
and died July 30. 1779. aged seventy- four. He joined
the South Parish Church (in Norwood) with his
wife. November 7, 1736. His will shows him to have
been the ov,-ner of valuable real estate and farm
property. He married (first) at Walpole, February
16. 1732. Deborah Boyden. of that town, who died
July 18. 1770, aged fifty-nine: he married (second)
November 7, 1770, Elizabeth Talbot, of Stoughton,
probably a daughter of Ebenezcr and Elizabeth Tal-
bot, of Stoughton, who was born there February 22,
1754. Elizabeth died July 2, 1802, aged seventy-six.
The children all by the first wife, were : David,.
Thomas, Jacob, Deborah, Hannah, Nathan, Oliver,
Abigail, Mary and Abner,

(VI) David (2). eldest child of David (r) and
Deborah (Boyden) Fisher, was born in Dedham. Jan-
uary 22, 1733. He was a member of the South
Parish Church. December 5, 1762, but soon became a
member of the Rev. Philip Curtis' Church at Sha-
ron : lived on Moose Hill in Sharon, then Stough-
tonham. In the final settlement of his father's es-
tate, February 15, 1781, the other heirs' quitclaimed
to David for seven hundred pounds all their right in

1 834


the estate except that part set to the widow, Eliza-
beth, as her right of dower. David was lieutenant in
Captain Savel's Company, Colonel Lemuel Robin-
son's regiment, which marched from Stoughtonham
(now Sharon) on the 19th of April. He also served
in Stephen Penniman's company, Robinson's regi-
ment, and in Theophilus Wilder's company. Colonel
Dike's regiment, from December, 1776, to March i,
1777. He made his will March 19, 1812, probated
September i. 1812. His inventory showed proper-
ty of the value of two thousand eight hundred and
seventy-six dollars and sixty-two cents. He mar-
ried, September 21, 1758, Abigail, daughter of Isaac
and Mary (Whiting) Lewis, of Dedham, who was
born there December 4, 1738. Their children were :
David, Moses, x\aron, Ebenezer, Catherine, Rebecca.
Marv and Mary (2).

(VH) David (3), eldest child of David (2)
and Abigail (Lewis) Fisher, was born in Sharon.
June 26. 1759. and died in Francestown, New Hamp-
shire, November 8, 1829. ''David Fisher, with other
settlers from Dedham and Sharon, came here
(Francestown. New Hampshire) about the year 17S0,
and cleared the farm known as the James Whitfield
place, on the northeastern slope of Oak Hill. Here
he reared a family of thirteen children.' He was
large and athletic, his 'common weight' when in the
prime and vigor of life was 250 pounds. He was
known in both Dedham and Francestown as 'King
David.' He entered the Revolutionary Army when
16 years of age." "Fisher's sawmill was built by
David Fisher about the year 1800. This mill stood
about two miles north of the village toward Deer-
ing. Now owned b}- Samuel E. Bryant, who put up
a new mill in the place of the old in 1890. The
stream is called Fisher's brook." He married, No-
vember 20, 1781, ]\Iehitable. daughter of Lieutenant
Ebenezer and !Mercy (Guild) Hewins, of Sharon,
who was born there February 20, 1762, and died at
Francestown, New Hampshire, May 4. 1849. Their
children were : Mehitable. David, Ebenezer, Joel,
Susanna, Increase, Enoch Hewins, Benjamin, Asa,
Nancy, Levi, Mar\- and Thomas.

(VIII) Levi, eleventh child and seventh son of
David (3) and Mehitable (Hewins) Fisher, was
born in Francestown. March 14, 1803, and died at
Tklerrimack, where he resided November 29, 1880.
He was a farmer and stone mason. "The young
days of Levi Fisher were spent on the farm of his
father, receiving a common school education. He
worked on the foundations of two factories of the
Nashua Manufacturing Company, but after his mar-
riage returned to his father's farm for a few j'ears.
Then with his wife and two children he moved to
New London, New Hampshire, where he owned and
operated a grist mill for several years. In the
spring of T842, he bought a farm in Merrimack,
whore he lived until his death. He was an active
member of the Congregational Church for more than
fifty years, a highly respected citizen, f'olitically
he was a Democrat." He married, February 24,
1829, Fanny, daughter of Alexander and Eliza
(Gage) Wilkins. of Merrimack, who was born in
Merrimack, June 12, 1808, and died April 22, 1905.
Their children were : Levi W., Sarah W., George
W., Anna L. and Cynthia M.

(IX) Levi W. Fisher, eldest child of Levi and
Fanny (Wilkins) Fisher, was born in Francestown.
September 19, 1829. He was educated in the public
schools, and at the age of twenty went to Canton,
Massachusetts, where he was employed four years
in a sash and blind factory. In 1855 he went to
Lowell, Massachusetts, was employed at the same
kind of work till i860, and later at Springfield, ^Mas-

sachusetts, Burlington, Vermont, Potsdam, New
York, and Lowell, Massachusetts, and in 1871 at
IManchester, New Hampshire. In 1874 he returned
to his home in Merrimack to take care of his par-
ents and cultivate the home farm, and there resided
until his death, January 25, 1907. The farm is five
miles west of Reed's Ferry, near the Amherst line,
and half a mile east of Boboosic Pond. He was a
Democrat, and a member of the Congregational
Church. He married (first) October 15, 1856, Lucy

A. Freeman, of Potsdam, New York, born June 2,
1829, died January 26, 1875. Married (second),
May 23, 1883, Frances E. Bowen, of Rutland, Ver-
mont, daughter of Milo and Martha (Berry) Bowen,
born September i, 1851. The child of the first wife
was Maria L., born January 28, 1857, married Frank

B. McAfee, of Bedford. The children of the sec-
ond wife are : Fanny W., born March 9, 1884,
married John T. Graves, of Merrimack ; Ella G.,
born IMarch 3, 1886, unmarried, lives with mother.
Edwin Milo, born September 20, 1889, at home.

(Second Family.)
The name of Fisher was a leading one
FISHER among the Scotch-Irish colonists of
the. early settlements. The holders of
this name have been noted for their indomitable
energy, their bravery under misfortune, and many
of them have made a notable record in the civic,
religious and educational aflr'airs of the various com-
munities in which they lived.

(I) Deacon Samuel Fisher emigrated from the
north of Ireland in 1740, in the nineteenth year of
his age. The vessel in which he had embarked was
scantily provisioned, and the voyage an unusually
long one, and the passengers had come to the con-
clusion to sacrifice one of their number to preserve
the lives of the remainder. This direful lot fell to
Mr. Fisher. Before the sentence had been carried
into execution a sail was sighted and their signals
of distress being observed, they were rescued from
their terrible position. Upon his arrival in this
country ]\Ir. Fisher was bound to labor for a certain
length of time for a man in Roxbury, Massachus-
etts, to pay for his passage. Subsequently he found
a home and employment in the family of Matthew
Taylor of Londonderry, New Hampshire. Deacon
Fisher was by trade a weaver, and although he turned
his attention to farming he continued to make use of
his loom to supply his family with all manner o*"
cloth for household and personal needs. His person-
al appearance was tall and commanding, and he was
of dignified bearing. From the town records it ap-
pears that he held many positions of trust and re-
sponsibility in public affairs. He was elected a ruling
elder in the Presbyterian Church thirty years prior
to his death, and faithfully performed all the duties
pertaining to this office until compelled to resign by
the infirmities of old age. This love for ecclesiastical
office seems to have been bequeathed to his descend-
ants, as about half of them in the second and third
generations were deacons, and three grandsons were
ministers of the Gospel. He married (first) Sarah
Taylor, daughter of Matthew Taylor. He married
(second) Janet Wilson. He married (third) Sarah
Barber, who wrs of English descent. Among his
seven children, was a son, Ebenezer.

(II) Ebenezer Fisher was the son of Deacon
Samuel (i) and Sarah (Barber) Fisher. He vvas
of a studious disposition, and in his youth had looked
forward to a collegiate education, but as he was not
of a sufficientlv robust constitution to withstand the
necessary confinement, he was obliged to give up
this plan and settled upon a farm adjoining that of
his father. For a number of vears he continued to



^j^mI ^ <^ mAm^



teach school during the winter months, and he re-
tained his interest in educational matters through-
out his life, frequently holding the office of super-
intending committeeman. He was an influential
citizen, and was active in the civic affairs of the
town in which he resided. In his seventeenth year
he removed with his family to Bedford, New
Hampshire, and although in feeble health he kept
in touch with all the important movements of the
tmies. His death occurred during the winter of
1848-49. he being the last survivor of the large fam-
ily of his father. He married (iirst) Polly Dean,
and had six children. He married (second), in
1S16, Jane Orr, daughter of George Orr, of Bed-
ford, New Hampshire, and their children were:
George Orr, born December 30, 1817, died August,
1845; Mary Jane, born August 10, 1820, married,
February 5, 1850, Ebenezer Tolman Conant.

(HI) Mary Jane, daughter of Ebenezer (2)
and Jane (Orr) Fisher, was a very young child
when deprived by death of her mother. She was
reared by her aunt, Ann Orr, a noted teacher of
Bedford and its vicinity for the long period of fifty
3-ears, and who was a woman of great strength of
mind and character. Her influence was potent in
molding the character and habits of the young girl,
and this stern teaching enabled her to bear with
fortitude the trials of her later life. Miss Fisher
TDCgan teaching at an early age, and at the age of
twenty-eight years went to Greensboro. Vermont,
where she taught in the family of the Congregational
minister, and later was for a short time a teacher
in the public schools. She taught one term when
she had reached the advanced age of sixty years.
She was married February 5, 1850, to Ebenezer T.
Conant, (see Conant, IX) who died in April. 1858.
Being early left a widow, with eight children to sup-
port and a farm to manage, she faced her troubles
with dauntless courage and took up her tasks he-
roically and cheerfully. She rose above circum-
stances, and was the home maker for her aged
father-in-law, while her children were given a train-
ing whose influence was felt throughout their lives.
She died at the home of her daughter in Hardwick,
Vermont, in May, 1903.

The Nutters were among the earliest
NUTTER settlers of New Hampshire, and have

spread from its southeastern borders
over the state and through the United States. "They
Tiave been husbandmen, sailors, fishermen ; with
notable examples in the trades and employments
of southeastern New Hampshire. Of good judg-
ment in woodcraft, as well as lands, and of lasting,
enduring qualities as seamen, they have been thrifty.
Contented in their abundance, unpretentious for
affluence or station, they have constituted a numer-
ous class of the sturdy citizens whese firmness, con-
stancy and reliability have given character to New
Hampshire men. One looks in vain for their names
on college catalogues or state prison rolls, and they
are seldom found in professional or official life.
Their active pursuits have been in the open air,
and their gray hairs have found rest in quiet

(I) Hatevil Nutter was born 1603 in England,
and came with wife. Annie, and son, Anthony, to
Dover, New Hampshire, in 1633. He received sev-
eral grants of land, and became a large holder of
Teal estate. He was a ruling elder in the first
church at Dover, and sometimes filled its pulpit.
In April, 1669, he gave lands to his son Anthony,
and February 13, 1670, gave land on Dover Neck

to his son-in-law, John Winget. He filled various
offices in church and state, and was highly res-
pectable and possessed of a good share of this
world's goods. His will w^as dated December 28,
1674, ^"d was proved June 29 of the year follow-
ing, which approximates the time of his death, at
the age of seventy-one years. Four of his chil-

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 85 of 149)