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Founders' Day


New Haven, Conn.




Town of New Haven

April 2STH, 1888.






APRIL 25. 1638.

A granite tablet, a cut of which is printed above, was inserted by order
of the committee in the west wall of the brick store at the corner of
College and George streets.

The oak tree, beneath whose shade the first public Christian worship in
New Haven was observed, is said by tradition to have stood about twenty
feet north of George street and fort3'-five feet east of College street.

. \N V- \^ v^


The first steps towards the celebration of the 250th anniver-
sary of the settlement of New Haven were taken at a special
town meeting held in Loomis' Temple of Music, December
22d, 1887, previous notice in legal form having been given.
At this meeting the following votes were passed :

Voted, That the sum of one thousand dollars be and is
hereby appropriated from the treasury of the town for the
purpose of properly celebrating the 250th anniversary of the
settlement of the town of New Haven, if in the judgment of
the Board of Selectmen they should deem it best ; provided
that the Selectmen enquire into the legality of expending
such sum.

Voted, That said sum be expended at the discretion of the
Selectmen, and that said celebration should be of a civic and
historical, rather than of a military character.

In accordance with this action, a public hearing of citizens
interested in the celebration was held February ist, 1888, in
response to an invitation published by the selectmen in the
daily papers. At a second hearing, held February 24th, those
present voted to appoint the following committee to co-operate
with the selectmen in managing the celebration :

From the Selectmen — James Reynolds, George M. White.

From the Chamber of Commerce — Henry G. Lewis, Henry
S. Dawson, N. D. Sperry, Max Abler, James D. Dewell,
James P. Pigott.

From the New Have7i Colony Historical Society — Thomas R.
Trowbridge, Johnson T. Platt, Ruel P. Cowles, Simeon
E. Baldwin.

From. Yale University — Franklin B, Dexter.

From the Board of Education — Horace Day.

Fro7n the Grand Army of the Republic — Lewis B. Brown, E. E.
TiSDALE, David S. Thomas, Nathan Easterbrook, Jr.

From the New Haven Congregational Club — Justin E, Twitchell.

Fro7n the HoJ>ki?is Grammar School — George L. Fox.

From the Citizens of the Town — Henry B. Harrison, L. S.

Various sub-committees to represent the different interests
involved were subsequently appointed, and additions were
made to the general committee from time to time. This com-
mittee as finally constituted was as follows :


Max Adler,
Charles W. Allen,
E. D. Bassett,
Simeon E. Baldwin,
T. Attwater Barnes
William A. Beers,
J. J. Brennan,
Isaac E. Brown,
Lewis B. Brown,
E. E. Bradley,
John C. Bradley,
Henry T. Blake,
Charles F. Bollmann,
Samuel Bolton,
Caleb B. Bowers,
William H. Carmalt,
Hiram Camp,
R. H. Chittenden,
Ruel p. Cowles,
Daniel Colwell,
Edwin W. Cooper,

Frank E. Craig,
M. C. Cremin,
Henry S. Dawson,
Horace Day,
Franklin B. Dexter,
Clarence Deming,
James D. Dewell,
George L. Dickerman,
Edward F. Durand,
H. W. Durand,
Timothy Dwight,
John E. Earle,
B. E. Elmstedt,
Charles H. Farnam,
Henry W. Farnam,
Louis Feldman,
George L. Fox,
Simeon J. Fox,
George H. Ford,
Charles Fleischnek,
W. J, Fuller.

James Gallagher, Jr.,
Henry C. Goodwin,
J. P. Goodhart,
W. L. Gunning,
Henry B. Harrison,
A. C. Hendrick,
Henry L. Hill,
Conrad Hofacker,
Frank Hugo,
Alfred Hughes,
Charles R. Ingersoll,
L. H. Johnson,
Albert H. Kellam,
Ernest Klenke,
Frank T. Lee,
Henry G. Lewis,
Augustus E. Lines,
Henry W. Mansfield,
Patrick McKenna,
Ezra P. Merriam,
Charles G. Merriman,
S. E. Merwin,
James T. Moran,
George N. Moses,
James T. Mullen,
s. m. munson,
Charles A. Nettleton,
Charles N. Nott,
m. c. o'conner,
Henry Peck,
Henry F. Peck,

James P. Pigott,
Johnson T. Platt,
J. D. Plunkett,
L. S. Punderson,
William Rebman.
John B. Robertson,
William C. Robinson,
J. P. Richards,
John Ruff,
Paul Russo,
Charles W. Scranton,
C. Sleicher,
Stephen R. Smith,
N. D. Sperry,
Horace H. Strong,
W. F. Sternberg,
Peter Terhune,
David S. Thomas,

E. E. Tisdale,
Charles H. Townsend,
Thomas R. Trowbridge,
Morris F. Tyler,
Justin E. Twitchell.

F. H. Waldron,
George M. White,
William W. White,
James D. Whitmore,
Eli Whitney, Jr.,
Theodore D. Woolsey,
Samuel A. York,
Maier Zunder.

The following sub-committees had charge of the details
of the celebration :

ELI WHITNEY, Jr., Chairman.
Thomas R. Trowbridge, Max Adler,

Charles H. Townsend, Patrick McKenna.

HENRY G. LEWIS, Chairman.
Henry B. Harrison, Johnson T. Platt,

Morris F. Tyler, Clarence Deming.


Franklin B. Dexter, Henry W. Farnam,

William C. Robinson, William H. Carmalt.


SAMUEL A. YORK. Chairman.
James D. Whitmore, James T. Moran,

George L. Dickerman, Charles Fleischner.


E. E. BRADLEY, Chairman.
A. C. Hendrick, Charles H. Farnam,

H. H. Strong, Frank T. Lee.


A. H. KELLAM, Chairman.
James T. Mullen, Frank Hugo,

E. F. Durand, L. H. Johnson,

Conrad Hofacker, H. W. Durand,

Frank E. Craig, Henry C. Goodwin,

M. C. Cremin, William Rebman,

Samuel Bolton, Henry L. Hill,

Daniel Colwell, William F. Sternberg,

Peter Terhune, James Gallagher, Jr.,

J. P. Richards, Paul Russo,

M. C. O'Conner, George N. Moses,

W. J. Fuller.


HORACE DAY, Chairman.
J. D. Plunkett, Maier Zunder,

Henry F. Peck, George L. Fox.


Charles R. Ingersoll, N. D. Sperry,

Thomas R. Trowbridge, James D. Dewell.


HENRY T. BLAKE, Chairman.
S. E. Baldwin, N. D. Sperry,

E. D. Bassett, Horace Day,

John E. Earle, Thomas R. Trowbridge,

R. H. Chittenden.

D. S. THOMAS, Chairman.
Charles W. Scranton, George H. Ford,

Simeon J. Fox, Ezra P. Merriam.


S. E. MERWIN, Chairman.
S. R. Smith, George M. White,

T. Attwater Barnes, Charles F. Bollmann,

Horace Day.

FRED. H. WALDRON, Chairman.
Charles Fleischner, Charles H. R. Nott.


HORACE DAY, Chairman.
H. W. Farnam, James D. Whitmore.


JOHN C. BRADLEY, Chairman.
William W. White, Henry Peck,

Augustus E. Lines, Charles G. Merriman,

Henry W. Mansfield, Charles W. Allen.

It was soon felt that the original appropriation made by the
town would not be sufficient to defray the expenses of the
celebration. Upon the recommendation of the committee, a
special town meeting was accordingly called for March 15th,
1888, and an additional appropriation of two thousand dollars
was then made. At a meeting of the committee held March
29th, it was voted that the day of the celebration be named
" Founders' Day."

The Committee on Procession had originally appointed
General S. R. Smith as chief marshal of the day. The death
of Mrs. Smith, however, made it impossible for him to act,
and Major T. Attwater Barnes, who had been appointed
as General Smith's chief of staff, was requested to act as
marshal in his place.

No medal was struck by the general committee to commem-
orate the celebration, but Mr. Theiler, of Meriden, was author-
ized to make one as a matter of private enterprise.

The general committee held in all eleven meetings, the
full records of which have been copied in a book and placed
by Mr. Easterbrook, the secretary of the committee, in the
library of the New Haven Colony Historical Society.

The landing of the earliest settlers having taken place on
the 15th of April, 1638, O. S., it was decided to hold the cele-
bration on the corresponding day of the new calendar, that is
to say on the 25th of April.

The official exercises consisted of a procession in the morn-
ing and commemorative exercises in the Center Church in the
afternoon. As the school children were largely represented
in tlie procession, a leaflet was prepared at the request of the
Committee by Mr. Horace Day, secretary of the Board of

Education, giving the leading facts witli regard to the various
places of historical interest about the town, which were indi-
cated by appropriate inscriptions. Twenty thousand copies
of this leaflet were printed for gratuitous distribution.

The former pupils of Mr. John E. Lovell's Lancasterian
School, after taking part in the procession, held a reunion,
which, though not a part of the official programme, seems to
possess sufficient interest to warrant us in appending a brief
account of it to this pamphlet.

Finally, as the tax-payers have a right to know how the
money which they voted has been spent by the committee, we
have also printed the report of the treasurer.

These various topics will be found below in the following
order :

(i.) Leaflet for School Children ;
(2.) Order of Procession and Line of March ;
(3.) Order of Exercises in Center Church ;
(4.) Oration, by Henry T. Blake, Esq. ;
(5.) Reunion of the Lancasterian School.
(6.) Treasurer's Report.


April 2^th, 163S— April 2^1/1, 1888.



The white lines indicate the original streets of the town ; the dotted lines, the additions
made in two centuries, down to 1838.

The numerals correspond with those which mark the site of conspicuous events or the
residences of men who have been prominent in the New Haven of the past.

"A people which takes no pride in the noble achievements of remote ancestors will never
achieve any thing worthy to be remembered with pride by remote descendants."

. — Macaul»y.

Prepared for the use of the Children in the Schools of New Haven,

many of whom it is hoped may be active in the observance,

fifty years hence, of the third Centennial of its history.

Horace Day. Joseph D. Plunkett. Henry F. Peck.

Maier Zunder. George L. Fox.

Quinnipiac-Rodenburgh-New Haven.

This town was first known to Europeans by the occasional visits of Dutch
traders, who named it Rodenburgh or Red Hills, from the most conspicuous
features in the landscape. Its Indian name was Quinnipiac. In 1637,
when the Pequots were driven from their ancestral homes on the borders of
Rhode Island, to perish as an independent tribe in a swamp in Fairfield,
the English soldiers were delayed for several days at Quinnipiac, uncertain
in what direction the Indians had fled. In this way the place became
known to Theophilus Eaton and his associates, the first settlers of New
Haven, who were charmed by the advantages which the place presented for
the commercial colony they proposed to found. Several weeks were spent
by Governor Eaton in a survey of the place, and Joshua Atwater with six
others were left here during the winter of 1637-8, to make the necessary
provision for the coming colonists.

Quinnipiac was found to be occupied by a small tribe of Indians num-
bering forty-seven men. The deed which surrendered the rights of the
natives, assigns no boundaries to the tract, but conveys their entire territory
except a few acres reserved for planting, to Theophilus Eaton and John
Davenport. Soon after, a further purchase was made from Montowese, the
Sachem of a small tribe containing only ten men, of a tract of land extend-
ing ten miles southerly from what is now the south part of Meriden, and five
miles west and seven miles east from the Quinnipiac river. A subsequent
deed added two miles in width to the western boundar}' of this grant.
These indefinitely worded deeds convey the title to the original town of
New Haven, which included East Haven, Branford, North Branford, North
Haven, Wallingford and Cheshire, together with parts of Orange, Wood-
bridge, Bethany and Prospect, besides a small part of Meriden.

Five years after the settlement of the Town, the New Haven "Colony'
was established by uniting in one jurisdiction New Haven, Guilford, Mil-
ford, Branford, Stamford (including Greenwich), and Southold on Long
Island. It remained a distinct and independent colony till its absorption
by Connecticut under the charter granted to Gov. Winthrop by Charles II.
in the year 1662. As the New Haven Colony was settled without the
authority derived from a charter, it reluctantly acquiesced, Dec. 14, 1664, in
ceasing to exist as a separate jurisdiction.

Unlike other early settlements, New Haven was designed from the first to
be a commercial town. In proportion to its numbers, it was the wealthiest
community in New England. Its leading men had been engaged in foreign


trade or were merchants in the mother countr}-. The first settlers were rep-
resentatives of widely separated English homes, but they were banded
together by their earnest religious sympathies and by their common desire
to establish a community that should be the model of a free and inde-
pendent Christian Commonwealth.

1. Six men under the direction of Joshua Atwater, a merchant of Kent,
England, encamped near this spot in the winter of 1637-8. Winthrop's
journal says that the snow lay in New England, this winter, from the fourth
of November to the twenty-third of March, and was at times from three to
four feet deep.

2. The first sermon was preached here by Rev. John Davenport, under a
huge oak tree, April 25, 1638. Tradition says that the afternoon sermon
was by Rev. Peter Prudden, soon afterwards the first minister of Milford.
Thomas Buckingham, ancestor of Gov. Buckingham, was the original
proprietor of this lot. The frame house fronting Factory street was the
birth place of Rev. Dr. Lyman Beecher, father of Henry Ward Beecher.

3.* The "fundamental agreement," which determined the ecclesiastical
and civil government of the plantation, was made in Mr. Newman's barn,
June 4, 1639. By it the elective franchise was limited to church-members,
who formally organized the civil state, October 25th, 1639, when their magis-
trates and other municipal officers were first chosen. The day after, an
Indian accused of murder, was arrested and tried ; confessed his guilt, and
" accordingly his head was cut off the next day and pitched upon a pole in
the market place." Barbarous as this mode of execution may seem to us,
it was then and long afterwards, the custom in the mother country. The
English act, providing that murderers should be executed the day but one
after their conviction, was not repealed till 1S36.

4. Theophilus Eaton, first magistrate of the Town and Governor of the
Colony, was annually re-elected till his death in January, 1658.

5. Rev. John Davenport, an ordained clergyman of the church of England,
and first Pastor in New Haven, removed in 1668 to Boston, where he died
in 1670.

* The numbers referring to the first settlers designate only the lots assigned
them and not their buildings. In most cases tradition has failed to
identify the site of the latter. Newman's barn was somewhere on the lot on
Grove street, between Dixwell's corner and the "ordinary" of William
Andrews. When the residence of the late Prof. Kingsley, now occupied
by his son-in-law, Henry T. Blake, Esq., on the corner of Temple and Grove
streets, was built in 1824, an ancient well was uncovered just east of the
house. This well was doubtless near the dwelling of Robert Newman.
The position of the " mighty barn " is uncertain ; a suggestion as to its pos-
sible site is connected with the fact that the broad opening to the original
2d Quarter farming lands, now the entrance of Hillhouse Avenue, was
opposite to the present barn of Mrs. Henry Trowbridge, on Grove street.


6. Stephen Goodyear, an enterprising merchant, one of the first magis-
trates of the town and Deputy Governor of the Colon)-, died in London in

7. Matthew Gilbert, magistrate, deacon in the church, and in 1660 Deputy
Governor of the Colony, died in 1680.

8. Captain Nathaniel Turner having had experience in the Pecfuot war,
was entrusted with "the command and ordering of all military affairs."
He was lost in " the great shippe " in 1646.

9. Ezekiel Cheever, educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge. First
school teacher in New Haven, removed to Massachusetts in 1651, became
master of the Boston Latin School, and died in 1708, at the age of 94.

10. Thomas Pell, surgeon at Saybrook fort and in the Pequot war, mar-
ried the widow of Francis Brewster, the original owner of this lot, who was
lost at sea in Lamberton's ship. He purchased Pelham Manor in West-
chester County, N. Y., and died at Fairfield, Conn., in 1669.

11. Nicholas Augur, practiced medicine in New Haven from 1643 to 1676,
when he perished by shipwreck on an uninhabited island off Cape Sable.

12. Mark Pierce, public surveyor and teacher of a private school.

13. William Jones, an English lawyer, son-in-law of Governor Eaton,
came to New Haven in 1660, was active in opposing the union of New
Haven with Connecticut, became Deputy Governor in 1691, and died in

1 4 . -^D avid -¥ale, father of Elihu Yale (from whom the College is named),
and brother-in-law of Governor Edward Hopkins, the founder of the Gram-
mar School, removed to Boston in 1645, and afterwards returned to Eng-

15. William Andrews, keeper of the first "ordinary" for the entertainment
of strangers.

16. Owen Rowe. His name is affixed to the death warrant of King
Charles L He was associated with Eaton, Davenport, and others in their
scheme of settlement here, and this home lot was assigned to him. But he
remained in England and escaped trial as a regicide, by dying in the Tower
of London.

17. John Dixwell, another regicide, lived for many years on this corner
under the assumed name of James Davids, and died here in 1689 at an
advanced age.

18. William Hooke, teacher of the First Church, and associated with
Davenport as Pastor. He returned to England and became domestic
Chaplain to Oliver Cromwell, who was cousin to his wife. She was sister
to Whalley the regicide, whose daughter was the wife of the regicide Goflfe.
Both of these parliamentary generals were in concealment in and around
New Haven for more than two years.

19. George Lamberton, Captain of the great ship lost at sea in 1646.

20. Thomas Trowbridge, Barbadoes merchant, died at Taunton, England,
in 1673.

21. Henry Rutherford, merchant, ancestor of President Hayes, died in
1678. His widow married Governor William Leete of Guilford.

22. Thomas Gregson, merchant, lost at sea in the great ship in 1646.

23. John Evance, Barbadoes merchant, returned to England.


24. Isaac Allerton, the leading merchant of New England, one of the Ply-
mouth pilgrims, died here in 1659 ; his name stands between those of Elder
Brewster and Miles Standish in the covenant made by the founders of that

25. John Winthrop, Jr., Governor of Connecticut, purchased this home
lot of Richard Malbon and resided here for two years — one of the wisest
and best men among the early immigrants.

26. Yale College, founded at Saybrook in 1700, removed to New Haven
in 1716. The first building of wood, 170 feet long by 22 feet broad, and three
stories high, stood on the College grounds near the corner of College and
Chapel streets.

27. David Wooster, Major-General in the Revolutionary army, resided in
this house and died at Danbury in May, 1777, from wounds received in bat-
tle at Ridgefield.

28. Roger Sherman, signer of the Declaration of Independence, Senator
in Congress, one of the framers of the Constitution, a judge of the Superior
Court and first Mayor of New Haven, built this house, and died here in


29. James Hillhouse, Senator in Congress. He secured the avails from
the sale of the " Western Reserve " in the State of Ohio, as a perpetual
fund for the benefit of the schools of his native State. To him we are
indebted for the elms which adorn the Green. He died in 1832.

30. Noah Webster, author of the American Dictionary of the English
language, built this house, and died here in 1843.

31. Eli Whitney, inventor of the cotton gin. His invention made a revo-
lution in the clothing of the world. He resided in this house, where he died
in 1825.

32. Andrew H. Foote, Rear Admiral U. S. Navy, born in this house.
After having rendered his country distinguished service in the war of the
Rebellion, he died in New York City, June 26, 1863, in consequence of a
wound and of disease contracted at Fort Donelson.

33. Joseph E. Sheffield, founder of the Sheffield Scientific School. His
gifts to the school amounted to more than $350,000.

34. Henr>' Farnam, a benefactor of Yale College. This building is named
in his honor. The Farnam drive in East Rock Park was constructed
at his expense. He gave liberal aid to many other projects for the public

35. Augustus R. Street. For the encouragement of Art in New Haven and
in the College, he erected the Art Gallery at an expense of nearly $200,000.
He was also in other ways a liberal benefactor of the College.

36. Philip Marett. Late in life he became a resident of New Haven, and
at his death, in 1869, left a noble contingent bequest, to found a free Public
Library in this City and in aid of the New Haven Hospital, and the two
Orphan Asylums.

37. The original " meeting-house " of the first church, a building fifty feet
square, stood a little in front of the present Center church. Its construction
was ordered in 1639. For more than a century, the onl}' place of public
worship was the meeting house of the original church.


3S. The first Episcopal church was erected in 1753, although Trinity
Parish was organized several years previous.

39. The first Methodist church erected by the society in 1807, was on the
east side of Temple street, between Crown and George streets. It subse-
quentl)^ became the African Congregational church. The site is now occu-
pied by a Synagogue of Russian Jews.

40. The first Baptist church, now the New Haven Opera House, was
erected in 1822.

41. The first Roman Catholic church, at the junction of York street and
Davenport avenue, was erected in 1834.

42. The first Universalist church was built in 1871, the Society having
previously, for several years, worshiped in a hall on the southeast corner
of Court and State streets, or in the building now the New Haven Opera

43. The first Synagogue, on Court street, was formerly the place of wor-
ship of the Third Congregational church.

44. The oldest building in the city is the little structure on the east side
of State street. It was built as a warehouse by Henry Rutherford, an orig-
inal planter.

45. The oldest dwelling is on the lot north of the Armory in Meadow
street. It has recently been removed to the rear of the lot. It was built by
Thomas Trowbridge, Jr., in 1684.

46. The first ship-3'ard was near the corner of Meadow and West Water
streets. Within the memory of the living, the tide came up to the south
side of the latter street.

47. The Lancasterian School. In 1822, the First Methodist Society built
a large church on this corner of the Green. Its basement was occupied the
same year for a public school, conducted by a young and enthusiastic Eng-
lishman, a favorite pupil of Joseph Lancaster who was the father of the system
of monitorial instruction. John E. Lovell, that young man, now in the 94th
year of his age, makes glad the hearts of many of his old pupils by his
presence with us to-day.

48. Statue of Abraham Pierson, the first President of Yale College.

49. The first State House, built in 1717. The first jail, a little south,
much earlier.

50. The first burial ground. The " Founders " are at rest under, around
and in the rear of the Center church.

The first generation numbering a few hundred, " whose end was religion,"
established here a free commonwealth, enforced civil order, leveled the
forests, bridged the streams, laid out the streets of our beautiful city, and
patrolled the town by night, amid summer heats and winter frosts, with mil-
itary vigilance We have entered into their labors. The history of New
Haven for the past two hundred and fifty years is on record in Dwight's
Statistical Account, Barber's Histories, Kingsley's Centennial Address,

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Online LibraryNew Haven (Conn.)Proceedings in commemoration of the settlement of the town of New Haven, April 25, 1888 → online text (page 1 of 6)