John Hayward.

The New England gazetteer; containing descriptions of all the states, counties and towns in New England: also descriptions of the principal mountains, rivers, lakes, capes, bays, harbors, islands, and fashionable resorts within that territory online

. (page 1 of 70)
Online LibraryJohn HaywardThe New England gazetteer; containing descriptions of all the states, counties and towns in New England: also descriptions of the principal mountains, rivers, lakes, capes, bays, harbors, islands, and fashionable resorts within that territory → online text (page 1 of 70)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook



i'ki;si:NTi:ii hy



aBdlOIS. ISUGR/:..-..












Author ol the Columbian Traveller, Religious Creeds, &c. &c.






1839. i

■zt% F '^

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1839, by


in the Clerk's Office of the District Court in Massachusetts


Jodge and Mrs. Isaac R.HIti




Thk preparation of a Gazetteer ot New England, worthy the
patronage of its enlightened citizens, is no easy task : those only who
have attempted it can form a just conception of its difficulties. Long
and wearisome journeys must be performed ; hundreds of volumes and
local histories must be consulted, and thousands of letters must be written.

Although a kind Providence has blessed the editor with health, and
with numerous friends, in all parts of New England ; yet, after a long-
period of devotedness, he is mortified that his work is not more complete.

It will be perceived that there are many towns, particularly in the
eastern section of New England, whose names are merely mentioned;
and that notices of others, in many paries, are exceedingly deficient. Had
our means permitted, fair representations of the character and resources
of those towns might have promoted individual and public interests; and
enhanced the value of our volume. There are lakes and rivers in the
northern and eastern parts of New England, whose beauty, volume of
water, and hydraulic power, might vie with the Winnepisiogee and Mer-
rimack; but whose locations and even names are but indistinctly known.

But we have the consolation to believe that a Gazetteer of New Eng-
land, perfect in all its parts, is rather desired than expected. Our coun-
try is new : large portions of the territory of the New England States,
are yet a wilderness, and new counties and towns are very frequently

The progress of science, and of the mechanic arts; the
advancement of commerce, both at home and abroad, and the increasing
success of the fisheries, united with the determination of the people ol
New England to connect the trade of the western oceans with their
Atlantic borders, by roads of iron, which frosts cannot impede, are so
great and strong, that the most devoted geographical and statistical writers
must be satisfied with following at a distance, rather than keeping pace
with the rapid car of improvement in New England.

In the performance of our work we have derived assistance from many
valuable maps and books on New England. Among the number a re-
spectful tribute is due, particularly, to Belknap's History of New
Hampshire; Williamson's Maine; Dwight's Letters; Savage's
Winthrop ; Thatcher's Plymouth; Fclsom's Saco and Biddeford ;
Benton and Barrey's Statistics: — Hale's Map of New England;
Stevens' Rhode Island; Carrigain's New Hampshire ; and Green-
i.eaf's Maine: — to Worcester's Gazetteer; Thompson's Vermont;
Pease and Niles' Rhode Island and Connecticut; Spofford's Mas-
sachusetts, and Farmer and Moore's Gazetteer of New Hampshire.

From the latter work, and from its authors, the lamented John Far-
mer, Esq., a celebrated antiquarian and writer, and Jacob B. Moore,
Esq., of Concord, N. H., author of several valuable historical and mis-
cellaneous works, we are indebted for much of that which is valuable
in regard to New Hampshire.

From a beautiful volume, entitled " Connecticut Historical Collec-
tions," by John Warner Barber, Esq., we have been permitted to
enrich our pages with some of their most valuable and interesting ar-

To Heads of Departments at Washington, and to the Secretaries of the
several States to which the work refers, for valuable public documents;
to Postmasters ; and to nnmernns ntber friends who have kindly assisted
us in our labors; whose names we should feel proud to mention, were it
in accordance with their wishes ; we tender the acknowledgments of a
grateful heart.

For the purpose of enlarging our work, as well as for its correction,
our editions will be designedly small : contributions are therefore respect-
fully solicited.

While it is our deterinination to devote our time and humble talents to
render our publications worthy of general approbation; we are gratified
with the assurance of co-operation from eminent men in all parts of the
country ; and we trust with confidence to receive that patronage, which
Yankees, both at home and abroad, invariably bestow on every effort
whose obvious design is usefulness.

Boston, May, 1839.



It was our intention to have connected this publication with the Gaz-
etteer ; but it was found that by compressing the matter, sufficiently to
unite them in one volume, both would fail of the object contemplated.

A great mass of materials for the Register is already received ; indeed,
a considerable portion is now ready for the press ; but as we have extend-
ed our plan, some months will elapse before its appearance.

The work will comprise the rise and progress of all the important lit-
erary, religious, moral and charitable institutions in New England : —
an account of the Churches and Ministers in the several towns, from
their origin, and settlement to the present time : — the rise and extent of
internal improvements : — statistics of various kinds : lists of Courts, At-
torneys at law. Physicians, Literary and Religious Journals, Newspa-
pers, Banks, Postmasters, &c. &c. : to which will be added brief notices
of distinguished men. In short, the Register is designed to comprise
all that may be considered important and useful, in a work of this kind, in
relation to New ErgLnd, and which is not contained in the Gazetteer.

The number of eminent men, of every profession, who have kindly
tendered the Editor their cooperation, is so great, that we feel confident
that the Register will be entitled to a share of public favor.

lEJ" Jill letters and papers for the Editor, are requested to he left at
the Boston Post Office.


In presenting the public with a Gazetteer of New England, it has seemed
proper to make a few introductory remarks of a general nature, on the
character of its inhabitants. They may with great propriety be called
a peculiar people : and perhaps New England and Pennsylvania are the
only parts of the new world, which have been colonized by a class of
men, who can be regarded in that light. The wiiole of Spanish and Por-
tuguese America was organized, under the direct patronage of the mother
countries, into various colonial governments, as nearly resembling those at
liome as the nature of the case admitted. The adventurers who sought
their fortunes beyond the sea, in those golden tropical regions, carried the
vices and the virtues with the laws and the manners of their native land,
along with them, and underwent no farther change than was unavoidably
incident to the new physical and political condition in which they were
placed in America. The same remark, with nearly the same force, may
be made of the Virginia colonists : they differed from Englishmen at
liome in no other way, than a remote and feeble colony must of necessity
differ from a powerful metropolitan state. Pennsylvania was settled by
a peculiar race ; but its peculiarity was of that character which eventu-
ally exhausts itself; and would speedily perish but for an amalgamation,
necessary though uncongenial, with the laws, the manners, and institu-
tions of the world. If all mankind were Friends they might subsist and
prosper. A colony of Friends, thrown upon a savage shore and environed
by hostile influences from foreign colonial establishments, would perish,
if not upheld by forces and principles different from its own. In the set-
tlers of New England alone we find a peculiar people ; — but at the same
time a people whose pecuHarity was founded on safe practical principles;
reconcileable with the duties of life ; capable of improvement in the pro-
gress of civilization, and of expanding into a powerful state, as well as of
animating a poor and persecuted colony.


Had not America been discovered and a tract upon our continent reserv-
ed for English colonization; — nay, lurther, had it not been precisely
such an uninviting spot as furnished no temptation to men of prosperous
fortunes, the world would have lost that noble developement of character
which the fathers of New England exhibit. A tropical climate would
have made it uninhabitable to Puritans ; or rather would have filled it up
with adventurers of a different class. A gold mine would have been a cui'se
to the latest generation. Had the fields produced cotton and sugar, they
would not have produced the men whom we venerate as the founders of
the liberties of New England.

Puritanism sprang up in England, but there it could not develope itself
with vigor or consist with happiness. The conflict with the hostile in-
stitutions of society was too sharp, and admitted of the cultivation of none
but the militant or patient elements of character. To struggle with
temporary success and to bow in permanent subjection was the necessary
fate of the persecuted sect. So it was wisely ordained. Had Puritan-
ism permanently mastered the church and the throne in England, it
would have been corrupted. It would have picked up and worn the
trampled diadem : it would have installed itself in the subjected church.
Regarding Cromwell and the Rump Parliament as the gift of Puritanism
to English liberty, it is a bequest at which we know not whether
most to sigh or smile. The seed sown in England fell by the way side
and the fowls came and devoured it up. The cause of political and social
reform, which was conducted with self-denying wisdom and moderation
in the outset, by single-hearted, honest men, degenerated as it prospered.
In the moment of its triumph it sunk under the corruptions of selfish-
ness, as a noble vessel which has braved the tempest in mid-ocean some-
times goes to pieces on the rocks as it approaches land.

But the precious seeds of liberty, civil and religiotis, which were sown
in New England, fell upon a genial soil, and brought forth worthy and
abiding fruit. Undertaking the same work which was undertaken by
their brethren in England, our fathers conducted it through the days of
small things, through hardships, trial, and disasters, to a triumphant issue.
It is true there were greater obstacles to be encountered in England, in
the resistance of established institutions. Deep rooted errors were to be
torn up ; the towers of feudal oppression, which had stood for centuries,
were to be overthrown. But the influence of these formidable institutions
was not limited to Old England. The rod of arbitrary power reached
across the Atlantic. The little colonies had to struggle with the crown
and the hierarchy, with the privy council and with special commissions,
vvith writs and acts of parliament ; and they had besides to struggle with the


hardships of (he •wilderness, the dangers of the savage foe, of a sterner
climate than that of their native land, the privations of a settler's life,
the alternating neglect and oppression of the mother country ; — but they
struggled successfully with all. The reformers of abuses in England, as
they claimed to be called, brought a king to the block, scattered a house
of lords, and saw their great military leader clothed with all the powers
of state; and in twelve years the son of that king returned to the throne,
not merely by an unconditional restoration, but amidst a jubilee of na-
tional rejoicing and without one security for liberty. All the while the
fathers of New England held on their even way; not betrayed into
extravagance when their cause at home (as they fondly called Old Eng-
land) was triumphant ; nor in despair at the miserable relapse which en-
sued. They did not indeed live to reap the fruit of their principles and
their sacrifices ; and it reflects but the greater honor upon them that they
persevered in their great work from a sense of duty, deep-seated, con-
trolling, fearless, and not the less so although, while they lived, unre-
warded by worldly success.

In fact the founders of New England were actuated by the only prin-
ciple sufficient to produce this result. It need not be said that this was
religious principle. How easily it is uttered of our Pilgrim fathers that
they were actuated by religious principle ; how little in these prosper-
ous days do we realize all that is wrapped up in that description of their
character ! It is difficult to comprehend of others what we have not
experienced in ourselves. That easy frame of mind which prevails among
a highly favored people, in periods of halcyon prosperity, is scarcely
capable of being placed in sympathy with the moral heroism, the spir-
itual courage, the sublime equanimity of a generation truly animated
by the religious principle, exalted by persecution, and purified by hard-
ship. Happy if in such a period we can, by diligent contemplation of the
venerated men of other days, exalt our imaginations, till by conceiving
we form a desire to imitate their virtues ! In proportion as we do this,
we shall realize the secret of their perseverance and success. They did all
things through Christ strengthening them. What cannot man do when
he has learned habitually and distinctly to regard this life as a preparatory
scene, — a brief hour, — nay a fleeting moment, introductory to an eternal
being.' The fathers of New England were enabled, with their scanty
means and feeble powers, to establish the foundation of institutions which
will last to the end of time, for the very reason that they regarded all hu-
man interests and delights as transitory. That paradox in our moral na-
tures which educes sti-ength out of weakness, triumph out of self-denial,
worldly power and success out of a stern preference of things not of


this world, received its most illustrious confirmation in the career of the
pilgrim fathers of New England.

This principle of our natures is the key to the great problem of the
success which attended the forlorn hope of humanity that landed on
these shores. There is indeed a fanaticism, which violates all the laws
of our nature, alike the higher ulterior principles which belong to an
immortal spirit, and the humbler influences which grow from the rela-
tions of ordinary life. It leads to surprising deeds; it forms characters
which dazzle us with brilliant eccentricities. It is near allied to mad-
ness; often runs into it. But the religiousness of the fathers of New
England was a far different principle. It was eminently jyractical. It
allied itself with wise institutions of government; it sought the guidance
of education ; it encouraged the various pursuits of industry; it provided
for the public safety and defence ; and with chaste discrimination admit-
ted the courtesies of polished life. It is difficult to say what sort of a
commonwealth George Fox would have founded, had circumstances call-
ed him to assume the province of the legislator. It is most certain, that
in setting up an immediate divine inspiration as the guide of every man,
he maintained a principle at war with the very idea of a politcal system
and all its institutions ; nor is it less certain that the constitution which
was actually granted to Pennsylvania, by its pure and noble-spirited pro-
prietor, possessed little of the peculiarities of his sect but their mild,
peaceful, and equitable temper. But the fathers of New England stop-
ped short of the point where solemn conviction passes into enthusiasm.
They pursued the ordinary occupations of life, planted the field, built
vessels and navigated the sea, and carried on the usual mechanic arts.
They made provision for protection against the Indians and the French.
They organized a plan of civil government; they established by law a
system of common school education, for the first time in the history of the
world, and they founded a college for the avowed purpose of training up
a class of educated men, well qualified to take the place of the learned
and pious ministers who had emigra-tcd with the first generation of pil-
grims. These are the doings of intelligent and practical men, not of en-
thusiasts or fanatics ; and yet they are the doings of men so resolutely
bent upon the exercise of the right of worshipping God according to the
dictates of their conscienc33, that they were willing to sacrifice to it
home, fortune, and all that the mass of men hold dear.

To say that the fathers of New England were not faultless, is merely
to say that they were men ; to say that they established no institutions,
the object of which was to bind the consciences of their successors is
praise asjust as it is high. If thoy adhered with undue tenacity to their


own opinions, and failed in charity towards those who differed, they at
least left their posterity free, without tlie attempt to secure hefore hand
the control of minds in other ages by transmitted synibols and tests. Hu-
manity mourn? over the rigors practised towards Roger Williams, the
Quakers, and t!ie unhappy persons suspected of witchcraft ; but let it
not be lorgotten that, as late as 1749, a witch was executed at Wurzburg,
and that even in 1730 two women were thrown into the water in Leices-
tershire, in England, to ascertain by their sinking or swimming whether
they were witches. Above all, it may deserve thoughtful enquiry, hefore
we condemn the fj-inders of New England, whether fi class of men less
stern in their principle? and austere in their tempers, could have accom-
plished, under all the discouragements that surrounded them, against all
the obstacles which stood in their way, the greal work to which Provi-
dence called them, — the foundation of a family of republics, confederated
under a constitution of free representative government. There is every
reason to believe, great and precious as are the results of their principles,
hitherto manifeUed to the world, that the quickening power of those
principles will be more and more displayed, with every leaf that is turned
in the book of Providence.

That part of the United States denominated New England, compri-

EIGHTY TOWNS. Their extent, divisions, and population at several
periods, are as follows:








1 1















— o

■ -p












N. H.

9 290







239, 32f-








lo4, 165







7.. 500





472 04J










G 1,122










1 ,00!), .522










•i 1 '17,733


The population of Maine and Massachusetts, in 1837, is given as by
a census taken in that year. The population of New Hampshire, Ver-
mont, Rhode Island and Connecticut, for 1837, is estimated according to
the ratio of increase, from 1S20 to IS'''.


In 1830, there were in New England 1,112 persons deaf and dun^b ;
798 blind, and 18,668 aliens. The number of colored persons in 1820,
was 20,782—1830, 21,310.

New England increased in population, from 1790, to 1800, 22.1 per
cent: from 1800, to 1810, 19.3 per cent: from 1810, to 1820, 12.7 per
cent: from 1820, to 1830, 17.7 per cent; and from 1830, to 1837, 12.4
cent. When it is considered, that most of the western states were origi-
nally peopled by New Englanders, and that vast numbers annually emi-
grate to those states, this increase of population is favorable, compared
with other Atlantic states. The population of New England in 1700,
is stated at 120,000 ; in 1755, at 345,000 ; and in 1775, at 714,000.

Boundaries And extent. This territory is bounded north and
northwest by Lower Canada, about 375 miles, and east by the Province of
New Brunswick, 275 miles. Its whole eastern, southeastern and southern
borders are washed by the Atlantic ocean and the waters of Long Island
Sound, a distance of about 600 miles. It is bounded west by the state
of New York, 280 miles. Its circumference is about 1,530 miles.

New England is situated between 41°, and 48^ 12' north la(i u le, and
65° 55', and 74° 10' west longitude from Greenwicli. Its greatest
length is between the sources of the Madawaska, Me., and Gi-ecnwich,
Ct., about 575 miles; and its greatest breadth is between Machias, Me.,
and Ilighgate, Vt., 300 miles. Its narrowest part is between Boston

and West Stockbridge, Mass., 135 mites.


Name. Duiing the unsuccessful attempts of Sir Wal-ter Raleigh to
plant colonies within the territory of North America, from 1584 to 15S7,
the whole country was called Virginia, in honor of Queen Elizabeth, who
was then on the British throne. In 1606, James I. divided the country
into two sections, JVorth and South Virginia; but the French having
taken possession of the Canadas, and founded Quebec, in 1608, and the
Dutch having established colonies at New York and Albany, in 1613,
the intermediate territory, n;)w tlie New England States, was called
New England, in compliment to its luxuriance and beauty, and in honor
to his native land, by the celebrated John Smith, one of the firs-t settlers
of Virginia, in 1607; and who visited this coast in 1614.

The New England people are freque,ntly called Yankees We are
■warranted in stating, from the best auth<J>ity, that of the late learned
Heckewelder, that the Lena Lenape, a tribe of Indians belonging to
the Six Nations, on the arrival of our fore fathers to these shores, pro-
nounced the word English, Vengees. The word was thus originally
spelt, but in the course of years, in common with thousands of other
Indian names and phrases, it became corrupted to Vanhce. The first


settlers of New England were English, or Englishmen, from Old Eng-
land ; and however the term Yankee, or English, may be applied to
New Englanders — the descendants of the Puritans consider the term
honorable to themselves, and reproachful only to those who misap-
ply it.

Surface, Soil, and Probuctions. New England is distinguish-
ed for its varied surface. Mountains in immense ranges, bold spurs,
and solitary eminences ; beautiful swells, extended valleys, and alluvial
intervales meet the eye in every direction. Large rivers, unrivalled for
their rapid courses and hydraulic power; brooks, rivulets, expansive
lakes, countless ponds; and a sea coast of more than six hundred miles,
decorated with delightful bays, harbors, and romantic islands, form and
beautify the outline of a picture of New England,

The soil of New England is as varied as its surface Loam, clay, and
sand exist in all their varieties and mixtures. The soil most gener-
ally diflfused through this country, is a light brown loam, mixed with
gravel ; fitted, in different degrees of moisture and dryness, for every
production common to the climate; and capable, with proper culture,
of the highest. fertility.

The agricultural productions of this country are exceedingly numer-
ous and valuable. The staple articles, and such as are cultivated in all
their varieties, are grass, Indian corn, wheat, rye, barley, oats, beans,
peas, flax, hemp, broom corn, millet, potatoes, onions, beets, carrots,
turnips, squashes, melons, &c.

The fruits of New England, both wild and cultivated, are also nu-
merous and abundant. Apples, pears, peaches, plums, cherries, quin-
ces, grapes, in all their varieties; walnuts, chesnuts, Madeira nuts,

Online LibraryJohn HaywardThe New England gazetteer; containing descriptions of all the states, counties and towns in New England: also descriptions of the principal mountains, rivers, lakes, capes, bays, harbors, islands, and fashionable resorts within that territory → online text (page 1 of 70)