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These are all the conveyances we find from George Cleeves
within the territory claimed by him under grants from Gorges
and Rigby, and in fact they cover all the land which at tlio.t
time was eligible for cultivation and settlement, except tlie
tract lying on the Xeck between the rocky pomt near Robin-
son's TTharf and Clay Cove ; and although one hundred acj-es
of this were conveyed by Cleeves to Nicholas Bartlett in 1651,
Richard Tucker sold the whole, estimated in the deed as con-
taining four hundred acres to Mr, Cad of Boston, on or about

' ■who marrieil a daughter of the Ee v. John Wlieelwright, and was many years
I ■ highly respected as a magistrate in the province of Maine.

P9io; :P^^^ ^^tHv 7^(^^

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the j^ar J 6G2.'"* Tliii> it api.ears that as early as 1002, Cleovcs
and Tucker liad conveyed away all their title to lands upon t1io
neck, now Portland, and also in all other parts of their exten-
sive grant, which were capable of ini] movement by the limited
population which at this time occupied the territory.

We will now briefly notice the conveyances which were early
made in other parts of the town. It will Vie recollected that in
1635, Arthur Macworth received a grant from Richard Vines?
acting under the authority of Gorges, of five hundred acres of
land on the east side of Presumpscot river at its mouth, togeth-
er with the island adjacent ; Macworth died possessed of this
tract in IGoT, and his widow divided it among her children ;
March 28, 1658, she conveyed '-to Francis Xcale of Casco, who
married her daughter," one hundred acres adjoining his dwell-
ing house, and part of the marsh on the north-west side of Scit-
terygusset creek, and the same day she conveyed another tract to
Xathaniel WharfT, the husband of her eldest daughter, Rebecca;
in 1666 she conveyed the island, fifty-six acres of land, to Abra-
ham Adams, who married her daughter Sarah: and in 1074, to
her son James Andrews, a large farm on the bay, east of the
point."^ These persons occupied their respective grants for a
number of years ; Whartf died here before the Indian troubles,
leavmg a widow and one son at least ; Xealo's house was near
Scitterygusset creek ; he moved to Salem in 1675, to avoid the
dangers of the war, and never reiurned ;* Adams, Andrews, and

1 Michael Hodge's deed to Pliineas Jones, 1727.

* [We know nothin? of this Mr. Cad. There were several persons in Water-
town, Hingham, and other places in Massachusetts by the nama of Cade or Cady,
but it never existed in this town.]

3 Part of this tract wa? occui)iei by the Jones family, whose ancestor Nathan-
iel, came from Worcester County, Massachusetts. It is now owned by Capt.
Samuel Moody, I80I., [Since that date, it has chan^^ed hands several times and
is now owned in part, by the licirs of Moody, J. W. Duia, of rurtlaul, who
has a bumnjer residence there, and several others.]

* [Neale died in Salera, 169'j, leaving a Avidow and .son Samuel. His eldest
son, Francis, died in lOrf.",. Tliomas Whirif, a descendant of Na-.iianiel and Ko-
becca Wharff, died in New Gloucester. February 1«, ISGJ, sg'A 94.]

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their mother at the commencement of the war of lOTo. '^"cnt to
Boston, where she soon after died. Several other persons in a
few years settled upon this side of the river, and carried their
improvements as higli up as the falls ; of these tlte first in or-
der from the mouth of the river, was Jenkin Williams, who
lived above Scitterygussett creek ; next above him was John
Wakely's plantation, fronting upon the river about three quar-
ters of a mile below the falls ; above this was Humjihrey Dur-
ham's farm, which was probably the highest upon that side of
the river. Williams came here before 1G67, and continued
iintil ICTo, when he moved to Salem, and did not return ; John
Wakely was the son of Thomas, he came here in 1G61 ; Dur-
ham is first mentioned under the year 1G58, as a purchaser of
land at Back Cove ; when he moved to the east side of the river
we are not able to ascertain.

'On the 14th of xUigust, 1672, Jenkin Williams, George Felt,
and Francis Nealc purchased of the Indians, Xanaadionit and
Wavaad Button, a large tract of land on the north-east side of
the Presumpscot river, beginning at the eastern end of the
mile square, which Munjoy bought of the Indians in 16G6, and
extending along by the river "to within fourscore poles of
John Wakely 's now dwelling house," and six miles back from
the river. The eldest son of George Felt sold his father's
part of this tract to David Phippen in 1G90, and Neale and
Williams afterward conveyed theirs to the same person.

The mile square refin-red to, was conveyed by Ciinnateconett
and Warrabita, to George Munjoy, June 1, IGGG, and is de-
scribed as a mile square at Ammoiicongan, beginning at the
great falls, (Saccarappa.) and extending down the river to the
lowest part of the town planting ground, and from these two
points into the woods until a mile is completed.^ Tiiis tract,
Munjoy's widow and .-in George, sold to Thomas Cooper of
Boston, April .0, ItJl.H, from whom it passed by mesne convey-
ances into tilt', hands of Biigadiur Waldo, under wlio-e heii's it
is now held.

1 Original deed, bee Appcniix Xo. vii.


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Wc ]iavc been thus particular in noticing- the convevanoos
of hind on the north side of Casco river, liecause they Inrin il,,-
basis of many titles at the present day, and enable us to fix the
localities of the hrst settlers \\ith a degree of certainty otln-r-
wisc unattainable. On the south side of the river, Robert
Jordan was chief proprietor, and the lands there are principally
held under his grants at this time. His earliest conveyance-;
were '-> Joseph Phippen, Sam})son Penley, Robert and Thomas
Staniford, Ralph Turner, and some others along the northern
part of Cape Elizabeth ; but he retained possession of Spur-
wink and nearly all the southern part containing the marshes
and the most valuable land, for his own family. He was not
however content with the large territory over which his title
was undisputed, Imt struggled for many years to extend his
domain as far north as the Presumpscot river. This involved
him in quarrels with Clecves and his tenants, which continued
during his life. In pursuance of liis plan, Jordan, in 1G5T,
proctired >n the lirst place of Richard Tucker, authority to oc-
cupy land about the falls of Presum])SCot river, expressed as
follows: '-September 11, 1057, 1 Richard Tucker, do autliorizc
Mr. Robert Jordan to make use of land adjoining to the falls of
Casco river above Mrs. Macworth's, and there to erect saw-mills,
if he thinks expedient. York 5. 5. '50, (July 5, 1(359,) Mr.
Tucker ))eing in court confessed this to be his act."' Having ob-
tained this color of title, he next endeavors to obtain possession
by consent of the inlial)itants, and for this purpose makes an in-
sinuating appeal to their interest in the following address to
them. "June 28, 1G58. To the inhabitants of Casco ]3ay have
presented — Whereas your neighbor Robert Jordan and otlicrs,
out of regard to the public good and for the reconciling of trade
in tliese parts, have endeavored and assayed to erect a saw-mill
at tlicir groat charge, all or tlic most wliercof hillierto hath
come to remediless damage tbrough some obstruction, and a

1 York Record-.



death put upon our work and design ; the said Jordan doth to
you hereby dechu'C that as he resolveth he in himself hath a
right and privilege to and in the place, for the erection of such
a work ; but in such case as it shall bo made duly and legally
appear, the said riglit and privilege to bo invalid, then the s;ud
Jordan huth a rigbt and privilege there by consent and allow-
ance of Mr. Richard Tucker, under his hand to such right he
prctcndeth to or may have there also, yo said Jordan by virtue
of a covenant made with Jolni Phillips, hath a right and privi-
lege to and in said place, for erection of said mills in reference
to the pretension of a i-ight there from Mr. Cleeves, l)y virtuo
of a contract made with him; all which being not now to bo
disputed: the said Jordan desireth you in regard of present
desolation we stand in, that you would, as you sec cause and
reason, by your subscription, declare whether the said Jordan
may have or hath your free -consent and allowance to go on
and perfect the said work, and fall timl)er for the work and
effects thereof, witli other conveniences, in peaceful manner,
without violence or opposition, rendering himself willingly sat-
isfaction to such person or persons in future, who can or sliall
justly make it appear they arc or have l^ecn unduly injured
by his so doing, or otherwise you would declare your reason-
able exception: presented by me, Robert Jordan. Consented
to by us, Robert Corbin, Thomas Grienly, John Sares, Thomas
Hains, Francis Nealo, ]\Iichael Mitton, Nathaniel Wallis,
Nicholas "White, William Ryall, Jane Macwortli, Thomas Mor-
rice, James Andrews, Gyles Roberts, Richard Martin, .Samp-
son Penlcy, Joseph Phippen."'

Mitton, the son-in-law of Clccvcs, who hero appears to sanc-
tion the prcteiLsions of Jordan, had probably had some misun-
dci-standing with Cleeves, and joined the party of Jordan, tj
appears by the records of next year, that lie was a witness
against Phippen, who was presented for "breeding a disturb-

' i'ork Records.

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aiicc ill town meeting hy flinging Mr. Jordan's votes on tlsc
ground," and at the same court, a witness with Jordan ai-d
Neale, against his fatlier-in-law wlio was presented for denying
to vote for magistrates, and for saying, if the people would vote
for Mrs. Clarke to be a witch, he would vote. It also appears
that Mitton, in IGGO, executed to Jordan a release of all his
interest in lands in Falmouth, in consideration of a contirma-
tion from Jordan of the title to land conveyed to him l)y

The controversy between Cleeves and Jordan was carried
into the first court, which appears to have been held in the
county after the submission of Falmouth and Scarborough to
the authority of ]\Iassachusetts. Tliis was on the 4tli of Jiily,
1659. The first action was brought by Cleeves against Jordaii
for breach of the arbitration bond entered into by Cleeves and
John Winter in' 1G40, by which they bound themselves in tlic
sum of one thousand pounds, to abide the award of referees oil
the suljject of tlie disputed title to lands. This action vras
withdrawji. At the same court Cleeves entered another actiim
against Jordan, "for making demands of certain lands pur-
chased by great sums of money, and possessed by order of
former grants these twenty-seven years." This action called
forth proof of the original title, and Jordan introduced the
certificate of part of the judges who tried the action in 1640,
between Cleeves and AYinter, taken soon after that trial, of
which the following is an extract: "That which Mr. Cleeves
and the jury took for Casco river to be but a creek into which
we saw but one little brook to run, but the other which Mr.
Trelawny takes for Casco river to be the river, it hath its issue
out of a gi-eat pond named Sabadock : the river is of a reasona-
ble depth and breadth, by the relation of the aiicient inhabi-
tants and natives, ever to have been called Casco river." This
is signed by Thomas Gorges, Henry Jocelyn, and Richard
Vines. Jordan also introduced the deposition of Roger Willine,
taken December 7, IGoS, in which ho ::ays that "about twenty-

ju.; M .^1

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one or Iwcuty-two years agone, he helped to row up the river,
■wliich riimieth by Mrs. Jane Maeworth's to ye falls called
Casco falls, Mr. Richard Vines, Mr. Arthur Macworth, ]\[r.
John Winter, ^Ir. Henry Abilie, with divers others wlioni he
hath forgotten, "svhere he saw Mr. Richard A'incs deliver unto
Mr. John Winter, possession of the lands and falls there, by
turf and twig." On the other hand, Cleeves relied ui)<)n his
deeds and possession ; Init the jury found for Jordan. Jordan
also recovered judgment against him in an action of debt for
ten pounds ten shillings.

Cleeves attributed his ill success in the county court to the
fact that Jordan himself was one of the judges ; he therefore
sought redress by petition to the general court. His memorial
is as follows :

"To the honored General Court, assembled and setting in
Boston this 24, 3 mo. li^.Gl. (May 24, 16(31.)

"The humble petition of George Cleeves, of Falmouth. Gent,
luimbly sheweth,

''That your petitioner hath been and yet is greatly wronged
and oppressed by Mr. Robert Jordan, not only in laying claimo
unto all my lands which I have purchased at very deare rates ;
but by forewarning of my tenants that are, and hindering oth-
ers that would be, although I have had after purchase, posses-
sion for these twenty-seven years or thereabouts : by means
whereof the populating of the town of Falmouth is much hin-
dered to the great loss and detriment of your petitioner and
considerable hindrance to the country; and least I should quietly
enjoy my just rights, he liath for two years together now past,
or thereabouts, continitally vexed your petitioner (as he hum-
bly does conceive and hopes to prove) with unnecessary suites
in law in severall courts, whereby he hath soc farr misinformed
severall courts, as your petitioner hopes to prove, as that pre-
vailing, he hath almost, and if help and redresse fayle, is in a
faire way utterly to ruin your humble petitioner and his for-
ever. Tlie ijartieulars whereof are too large to trouUe tlie

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lionoivd court ^vith in this sort. And tlierefore your linin!'.-?
petitioner dotli liunildy beseech the honored court to consid'jr
the premisses, and either to admit audience of your petitioner's
declaration m the court in gonerall, or else to grant a comraii-
tec to hcare wliat he hath to say, that soe your o])presscd i^ti-
tioner may have some relief in his great sulTering.

"Your most humble petitioner doth humbly intreat the h.>ii-
ered court to ponder the premisses, and grant your petitioner
such relief as in your wisdomes you shall see meet, and your
petitioner humbly craving leave, praying for a lilessing of Gud
upon you and your administrations, subscribe myself yours."'
The return upon this petition is as follows: "The petitioner
appeared before the committee ; but Mr. Jordan, against whom
he complains, was not present," the committee therefore recom-
mend that a day be ap[>oinied for a hearing of the case, of
which Mr Jordan sliould have legal notice, or else that a com-
mittee should be api^ointed in tliuse })arts to examine into tlie
facts and make report.

It is probable that nothing effectual f n- Cleeves was done un-
der this petition, for we find him appealing again next year to
the general court, against the injurious treatment of Jordaji,
in a tone of the deepest distress and huiiiility. This dociunent
preserves some interesting facts, and containing the language
of our primitive settler on a subject immediateh^ connected
with our soil, vre cannot omit and feci unwiliing to abridge it:
It is as follows:

"The Declaration of George Cleeves or his Bill of complaint
against Mr, Robert Jordan, of Falmouth, in the county of York.
Imjj. Mr. Robert Jordan, at the county court of York, held.
ill the moneth of July in the year 1059, did mike a sure
against mi.- for a debt not })ri.)j)crly myne, but so pretended ainl
recorded against me to tlie value often pounds i\i\\ shilling-',
and costs of court. To the which that he had no just ground

1 Ma-isachusetts Files.

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of siite ai^aiii^t mo, I make appeare as ibllowcth: Althoiml! I
acknowledge that I did receive of him to the value of ion
pounds, yet it was not on my own account, Init on the generall
account of the townes of Falmoutli and Scarborough, in the
county of York aforesaid. T beinir appointed by them to a|>-
peare at tlie general court in their behalf, And my charges
appointed hy them to be borue, in part whereof I received
tb.e before named sum of ten pounds. And Mr. Jordan Iiim-
self did ingai-e to pay his proportion of the charges, and . to
supply mo while I was at the court, as I can by evidence make

Secondly^ in an action by me entered and prosecuted against
him at the same court fur unjust claimes by him laid to my
lands and wrongful! iutorruption an<l liindrance of my rents
and himself being an Associate of that court, I was cast as I
conceive wrongfully in that action and the costs of court found
against me, which I also fur further clearing refer to testimoriv.

Thirdlij, Mr. Iiobert Jordan having recovered the said ac-
tions against me, takes fortli executions against me for i;. as
also for the cost of court aforesaid, all which with charges of
extending did amount unto the sum of seventeen pounds or
thereabouts, as a])pcars by the constable's testimony, wlio lev-
ied it on my house and liousehold goods and cow.

Fourthh/, Mr. Robert Jordan having soe recovered and ex-
tended as aforesaid, notliwithstanding did not then expel me,
my house, nor tooke possession of it. but tooke my word and en-
gagement to pay him the just sum <lue to him' l:»y virtue of the
said judgements, which accordingly I did pay unto him. Not-
withstanding wliieh, I having given him under my hand, that
the house and goods should reniaine as his till the sum were
paid. And though I had paid it fully, yet at a court of Asso-
ciates in ]March last, (himself being mia of the .Associates.; lie
sues me again for delivery of my house, goods, and cow, and
recovered against mc and hath taken them fix>m me and liolds

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them, the house being prised but at eight pounds, ^vhieh bur a
little before cost me sixty pounds.

Fifthly, Mr. Jordan at the former court of that county afore-
said, (which I sliould have minded i^efore,) after he had ca-i
me in the action of interru]itiou aforesaid, did under pretenc.^
of law sue me in an action of molestation, because I recovered
not the action against him, though it was a just action, whidi
I prosecuted, but himself being of that court, I was cast five
pounds again in that action, and lie not being therewith con-'
tented, demands of me fifteen })Ounds' alleging that the law
gives treble damages in such cases, which I conceive I shall
make appear to the Honorable Court to be a very unjust and in-
jurious thing.

Sixthly, At the same court of Associates in March last, hav-
ing again recovered my house, cow. Bed and Bolster and bed
clothes, my In-cwing kettle, pott and otlier goods, obtains an
execution directed to the constal)les Deputy to possess him, the
said Jordan, of the said house and goods, and commanded the
constables Deputy (being his own creture) to throw out all my
other goods, as apparel, chests, trunks, and provisions out of
doors, who so acted to the spoyling and breaking of many of my
things, and whereby I lost much of my goods and writings and
apparel of my wife's, and many othc-r things, to my damage more
than one hundred jtounds sterling. And more to vex and grieve
me, he brought with him one of his own men (to assist tlie
constable's Deputy) who was^ siarkc drunke, taking my kettle
and liott, l)eing full of wortc for Ijcere, ready to tun up, and
threw it about tlie house, and carried away the said kettle and
poet and detaineth tliem to this day, being contrary to the law
in such cases provided; and further to increase my griefe, he
requested his drunken man and Deputy constable to go into my
wife's chamber wiiere she was laid on her bed and very sick,
who in a Barljarous manner pulls her from off her Ijed and takes
her bcdd from under her, and the bed clothing and carries all

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away, my wifo being uo loss than fourscore and seven year? of
age, and all this done afcer a warrant of Aitaehment was serv-
ed upon the said liouse, goods, and cow, by the said Deputy
constable under the hand of Mr, Edward Rishwonh, one of the
Associates, requiring the said hou>e and goods to be responsi-
ble to answer my action of review ro bie tried at the nexi court
of Associates, vrhere (in truth) I liave but small hopes of good
success in my sutes against him, he being one of them, and
one that Bouldly said, let them, if they durst, fnid anything
against him: My suspicion being the greater for tliat I proved
at the last court, that I had paid !Mr. Jordan twenty pounds
towards the two executions to purchase my peace for the pres-
ent, until I might by some review or complauit, redress my
wrong, for whicli I had Jio allowance by any order of court,
Albeit the two first executions came but to fifteen pounds ten
shillings, besides what I paid the constable for fees and other
charges as appearetli I'y tlic constable's testimony, soe that Mr-
Jordan detained from me wrongfully my goods and two cows,
being all the cattle I had for my subsistence for the present,
and hath proferred to sell my house to any that would l>uy it,
and all this of purpose to starve and ruin me and my family.
All which I hope this Honorable Court will duly consider and
order my reparations. George Cleeves."

'-The Deputies conceive in answer to this petition, that the
county court of York next are hereb'y ordered to examhie the
grounds of these complaints exhibited against ^Ir. Jordan, and
proceed therein as they shall judge meet according to lawes
here established."

This order was entered at tlie October session in 1662, at
which the petition was probably pi-esented; but what was the
final result of the complaint, tlie records do not disclose. Jor-
dan, Jocelyn, and others, before the next court, had seceded
from the authority of Massachusetts and set up a jurisdiction
under Ferdinando Gorges, the grandson of Sir Ferdinando, who,

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after the rei-toration of Charles II. , luul procured from lin-
king a favoraldo notice uf hi? title, and iL'ti'n-t- to llie inliali-
tant?, rcijuiring them to su'unit to his government.

These representations ■>\ould make it appear tliat Clceves's
fortune -svas at this time at a lov,- el)h ; he seems to liave been
deprived of property and fri-nds, and was living to l)eliold him-
self turned out of the la-t acre of the large domain of Avhich
he was once the OAvner, and over Avliich he formerly ruled. l]ut
the circumstances show that his case v/as not so piteous as lie
would represent it. It appears that he was chosen one of the
commissioners of the town in 1G50 and 1002; and in 100^5 and
1004 he was the deputy from Falmouth to the general court.
lie i)roi)alily would not have been noticed in tins manner, had
his aflairs been so desperate as they a])pcar in Ins own i-epre-
sentations. There was a strong party undoubtedly against
liim ; ho had made himself unpo})ular, partly ])erha]»s liy the
violence of his temper, and partly by the zeal ■\\iih which he
pursued his landed interests. It a]>pi\ar> by the record of the
county court in 10-39, that at the same time tliat he sued Jur-
dan for disturbing his possession, he brought actions against
Francis Small for presuming to build and settle on his land,
and felling timber Avithout his leave, and against John PJiillips
for tres])ass. These suii- jirobaldy related tu land Avhich the
defemlants claimed under Indian deeds at Cajdsic ; Cleeves
was unsuccessful in tiiem both. At the same court lie was
sued by Thomas Elbrldge, who lived at Pcmaquid, in tvro ac-
tions, one for defamation, the other for assault and Ijattery.
In the lirst case, the jury returned a verdict against him for
fifty pounds, and also that lie should make an acknowledge-
ment of his oifense when the court shall appoint ; whicli the
court ordered to be in pj^Cicncc of the court and at Casco the
next public town meeting. He was also j.resented for denying
to vote for magistrates, cic. These contradictory circumstan-
ces, a];j»<;in1m.-nts to jtul'lie office, and open coinhnnnation in

Online LibraryMaine Historical SocietyCollections of the Maine Historical Society (Volume 1, ser.1) → online text (page 12 of 52)