N.H.) Manchester Historic Association (Manchester.

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On the second Sunday I was shown into a pew occupied
by an old gentleman and his family. His name was Eben
Foster. The pew was the first on the east end of the
church next to the pulpit. Mrs. Foster had a sister living
in Boscawen, who was an intimate friend of my mother.
In order to properly engage in the service it became neces-


sary to procure a Hymn Book, which I found at a book-
store on Elm street. I had my name printed in gold let-
ters on the cover. I have carefully kept the book until
this time. It is what is known as "Watts's Select." In
the first part is Psalms, numbering 150, just the same num-
ber as is in the Bible, — written by Dr. Isaac Watts,
who has written about 600 Psalms and hymns. Many of
them are in use to-day. Dr. Watts was a dissenting
clergyman and preached in the city of London about the
year 1700. Later he changed to Southhampton. One
morning he looked over the arm of the sea which sepa-
rates the mainland from the Isle of Wight, and beholding
its beauty he wrote:

"Sweet fields beyond the swelling flood
Stand dressed in living green;
So to the Jews old Canaan stood
While Jordan rolled between."

Next in the book were Books I, II and III. Later,
at the end, were added, "Select Hymns" by different
authors, which were inserted to keep the book "up to

I had a friend who desired a seat with me. He was
from Gilmanton, and as Dr. Wallace prepared for the min-
istry at the seminary there my friend had known of him.
His name was Nehemiah Sleeper Bean. I am glad to
know that his respected son is a prominent member of this

I had another friend who attended the same church.
He occupied a seat in the choir and played a brass instru-
ment to assist in the music. He was from Canterbury,
and his father was a deacon in the church there under the
pastoral care of the Rev. William Patrick. His name was
Thomas Ham. He died last year in Laconia, at the
advanced age of eighty-four.

To digress a little, Mr. Patrick was a Scotch-Irish
minister from Londonderry. He used "Watts's Select" in
his church in Canterbury, and always commenced the ser-


vice in the forenoon by saying, "Let us commence -the

worship of God this morning by singing to his praise

Psalm." In the afternoon he would say, "Let us resume

the worship of God this afternoon in the use of

Hymn of the Selection." During a visit to Constanti-
nople, in 1895, I m^t his granddaughter, Miss Mary
Patrick, a native of Canterbury, who is the distinguished
president of the American College for Girls at Scutari.
At the installation of President Hadley of Yale College, a
few years ago. Miss Patrick was honored by occupying a
seat on the platform with the other presidents of American

I occasionally attended evening meetings, which were
held in southwest corner of the church. There was no
chapel, as the stove which was used for heating the church
was located there. Generally there were not more than
twenty or thirty present. Deacon Hiram Brown was
usually there. He was a man easily approached and
always had a kind word for strangers. He was the first
mayor of the city. The last time I met him was in the
city of Washington, where he had charge of the grounds
around the Executive Mansion during the administration
of President Johnson. He gave me a cordial greeting.
Another brother was Deacon Baldwin, who generally took
charge of the meetings. Had I met him in Canterbury, I
should have supposed he would be classed as a Freewill
Baptist. When the spirit of the meeting would lag a little,
the deacon would sing a hymn commencing,

"Come blooming youth and seek the truth and on to glory go," etc.

He was an earnest, loyal deacon.

On entering the church and walking up the east
aisle, I passed the pew of Samuel D. Bell, who was a con-
stant attendant. He was afterwards chief justice of the
Supreme court of the state. One of the prominent men
who was a constant worshiper was Robert Reed, agent of
the Amoskeag Company, a particular friend of the pastor,


also David Gillis, agent of the Manchester Mills, and
William G. Means, father of the late Charles T. Means.
His voice was frequently heard in the prayer-meetings. I
was particularly pleased with Mr. Means, because he was
the paymaster on the Amoskeag, where I met him every
four weeks. I early made the acquaintance of Frederick
Smyth. He was prominent in all church matters. I
retained friendly relations with him in the numerous public
positions to which he was afterwards called. I was
selected to act as one of the bearers at his burial.

During my residence in the city, I met a friend and
relative, who attended the Hanover Street Church. She,
too, came from Canterbury. Subsequently she became
the wife of Dr. William W. Brown. Of her history you
are all well informed. She left her property to support
the Children's Home.

I will mention only one more. Brother Charles Hutch-
inson, in whose family I resided. Mrs. Hutchinson was a
decided Methodist, so to make all harmonious they attended
the Hanover Street Church in the forenoon and the Meth-
odist Church in the afternoon. It was Mr. Hutchinson
who invited me to join a Sunday-school class. I was
introduced to Mr. Payson, who was a teacher in one of the
public schools. His class was in the gallery. Mr. Payson
said I must provide myself with a copy of "Bane's Notes
on the Gospels," and a question book to match. (Quar-
terlies were not in use then.) I found Mr. Payson to be
an excellent teacher. In all my sixty years of Sunday-
school life, I never knew a better.

During my stay in Manchester, I became strongly
attached to Dr. Wallace. He frequently preached in the
South Church in Concord, where he always met with a
cordial welcome.

Ji^otes iFrom an a5Itr=Cime ^iitoxy

aMONG the American geographies and gazetteers of
a hundred years ago, that by the Rev. Jedidiah
Morse, a native of Wethersfield, Conn., and
for many years a resident of Charlestown, Mass., for a
quarter of a century stood at the head. A reader of
one of these old-time books finds many interesting com-
parisons with our present situations. Some of its state-
ments are somewhat startling, for example, where it says
in speaking of the rivers and bridges of the state that "A
bridge has been erected over Amoskeag falls 656 feet in
length and 80 feet wide, supported by five piers. And
what is remarkable, this bridge was rendered passable for
travelers in 57 days after it was begun."

The history mentions as the principal towns of the
state at that time, 1804, the following, with their popula-
tion: Portsmouth, 5,339; Exeter, 1,727; Concord, 2,052;
Dover, 2,042; Durham, 1,126; Amherst, 2,150; Keene,
1,646; Charlestown 1,364; Haverhill, 805; Plymouth, 743.

There was no Manchester in the state at that time,
and Derryfield had not risen to sufficient importance to
find honorable mention.

Portsmouth is described as the principal town in the
state, it being situated about two miles from the sea on the
south side of the Piscataqua river. It contained 500
houses and nearly as many other buildings. In a brief
sketch of Concord it says: "Concord is a pleasant, flourish-
ing town. The general court of late has commonly held
sessions there, and from its central situation and a thriv-
ing back country it will probably become the permanent
seat of government. Much of the trading of the upper
Coos centers in the town."



Speaking of trade and manufacture it says that the
inhabitants in the southwestern section of the state gener-
ally carried their producte to Boston. In the middle and
northern section, as far as the lower Coos, they trade at
Portsmouth. Above the Lower Coos there were no con-
venient roads direct to the seacoast. The people on the
upper branches of the Saco river found their nearest mar-
ket at Portland, in the district of Maine, and thither the
inhabitants of upper Coos have generally carried their
produce, some have gone in the other direction to New
York markets. The people in the country generally manu-
factured their own clothing and considerable quantities of
tow cloth for exportation. The other manufactures were
pot and pearl ashes, maple sugar, bricks and pottery and
some iron, not sufficient, however, for home consumption,
though it might be made an article of exportation.

It is worthy of statement that the eldest son of this
pioneer of historians in our country, Samuel Finley Breese
Morse, artist and inventor, for some time in his early man-
hood was a resident of Manchester, and the reader is
referred to the article in this volume of "The Art and
Artists of Manchester."

Cfje 0lb Croton Point Jtoab

An Historical Address Delivered by the Hon.
Albin S. Burbank at Cavendish, Vt., September
17, 1909, at the Dedication by the D. A. R. of
a Memorial to the Memory of the Builders of
THIS Great Military Highway in 1759-60.

While not coming within the territory of New Hampshire our state
had then and later a decided interest in the old road running from her out-
post on the Connecticut River, Old Number Four, to those important
defences on the shores of Lake Champlain, Fort Ticonderoga and Crown
Point. These last places, together with Fort William Henry at Lake
George, had been built at great expense and must be maintained in order
for the British to hold their supremacy of the American continent against
their aUied foes, the French and Amerinds. The need of this road had
been seen through the earlier stages of the Seven Years' War, when it had
been found so difficult to unite with sufficient ease and celerity the forces
of New England and the west.

Accordingly the task, greater for its day than now seems evident, was
begun in 1759, and two New Hampshire men, Col. John Goffe and Capt.
John Stark, were selected to take charge of the construction of the two
divisions of the road. The way, practically a bee-line between its objective
points, was built on the high lands and avoided the swamps. The wisdom
of its projectors was quickly shown, and it became one of the prime fac-
tors in determining the result of the long and arduous struggle. It
seemed like the irony of fate that this highway should prove the means
of the downfall in this country of its military builders, in less than a score
of years. Without this road it is doubtful if Gen. John Stark could have
rallied and marched his men across the province of the Green Mountains
in season to have made his heroic and victorious stand at Bennington in
the darkest hour of the Revolution.

The President of the day, Hon. Gilbert A. Davis, in his introductory

remarks at the unveiling of the tablet at Springfield, Vt., says aptly. "The

building of this road was no insignificant event, but an enterprise of great

national importance. We do well to honor it and mark its location, as



has been done from the Connecticut River along its line up into Weathers-
field. Unless this road had been built, perhaps George Washington, Gen-
eral Stark, Ethan Allen, and thousands of others . . . men whom we
justly regard as patriots and heroes, would have been classed as rebels
and traitors; the Declaration of American Independence would have been
regarded as a crime and a blunder." — Editor.

/^^p^HIS is historic ground and has been trodden by
' ^ ^ many thousand soldiers in those early days.
^ There is a tradition that the cannon captured by
Ethan Allen at Ticonderoga were taken to Boston over
this route, but we are unable at this late day to verify the
legend. In order that we may better understand the
necessity for this road (which was a great undertaking for
those days) I shall recall some points in the early his-
tory of the Colonies, and take up some of the important
events connected therewith, giving prominence to Number
Four, which was so intimately connected with the road.

At the end of Queen Anne's War in 1713, there was
no English settlement or lodgement on the Connecticut
River above Greenfield, then "Green River Farms," a dis-
trict of Deerfield. In 1714 Northfield became permanently
established as the frontier town. During the Father Rales
War of 1722-25, which was mainly a rising of some of the
Indian tribes, led by the Jesuit priest and backed by the
French governor, Vaudrieul, the outpost was advanced up
the west side of the river above Northfield with the erec-
tion of Fort Dummer, now Brattleboro.

With the close of that war Fort Dummer became a
truck house for trading with the then peaceful Indians
coming down from Canada, and soon a slender settlement
of traders grew up about it. This was the pioneer settle-
ment of the upper valley of the Connecticut. It was the
nucleus of Brattleboro, chartered and named some years
later, the first English township in what is now Vermont.
It remained the only upper valley settlement until about
1740. Fort Dummer was erected by the province of Massa-
chusetts for the protection of the northwestern frontier of


Massachusetts and Connecticut. It was ordered to- be
garrisoned by forty able men (English) and western Mohawk
Indians. The site of the fort is in the southeastern por-
tion of the town of Brattleboro, still known as Dummer's
meadows. It was built under the supervision of Col. John
Stoddard of Northampton. Lieut. Timothy Dwight had
immediate charge of the work and was the first commander
of the fort. He was an ancestor of President Timothy
Dwight of Yale. The fort was built on what was known
as the equivalent lands, which were four parcels of unoccu-
pied tracts along the west banks of the river between the
present limits of Brattleboro, Dummerston and Putney,
107,793 acres in all, which Massachusetts had transferred
to Connecticut in settlement of colonial lines. Afterwards
Connecticut granted them back to Massachusetts. Thirty
years later these townships (complaining of Massachusetts
taxation) again of their own motion shifted back to Con-
necticut. Shortly afterward Connecticut sold them at pub-
lic vendue and gave the proceeds to Yale College; they
brought a little more than a farthing per acre. The pur-
chase fell to four Massachusetts men; these were William
Dummer, lieutenant-governor of the province, William
Brattle of Cambridge, and Anthony Stoddard and John
White of Boston, — hence the name of the fort for the gov-
ernor and the town for the Cambridge man. The fort was
a stout structure built of yellow pine and thought to be
proof against ordinary assaults, but in October following
its completion (1724) it was attacked by Indians and four
or five of the garrison killed or wounded. Subsequently a
stockade was built around it, composed of stout square
hewn timbers twelve feet long, set upright in the ground,
inclosing an acre and a half. This and Number Four
erected later were the chief military outposts until the
conquest of Canada.

In 1740 three families from Lunenburg, Mass., began
the east side settlement of Number Four, which later
became Charlestown, and in 1743 a fort was erected. Capt.


Phineas Stephens was early there, and became the hero of
Number Four. He was a soldier of exeptional ability and
skill, and was familiar with the methods of Indian warfare,
having in his youth been a captive of the St. Francis tribe,
taken with his brother at Rutland, Mass., during a raid of
Father Rales war. Late in March, 1746, having been
employed elsewhere, he returned with forty-nine men to
Number Four, which was now a plantation of nine or ten
families, to save the fort from falling into the hands of the
enemy, and arrived just in time, for a force of French and
Indians under Ensign de Niverville was close upon it. On
the 19th of April and in May and June there were assaults
by the Indians, and in July the fort was besieged for two
days. Throughout the rest of the summer it was block-
aded. In August the enemy destroyed all the horses, cattle,
and hogs in the settlement, and then withdrew. Number
Four was evacuated and lay deserted until March, 1747,
when Captain Stevens again returned with thirty rangers.
He found the fort uninjured and received a joyous wel-
come from two inmates — an old spaniel and a cat left at the
evacuation. On the 4th of April a body of trained French
soldiers and Indian warriors appeared, variously estimated
at from four to seven hundred; then followed the siege
which lasted for five days. But Captain Stevens and his
men stood firm, and although the enemy endeavored to fire
the fort, they were unsuccessful. Finally at a parley the
French commander promised if the men would lay down
their arms and march out; their lives would be spared,
otherwise he would set the fort on fire and run over the top
of it. Assembling his men, the captain put it to vote whether
to fight on or to capitulate. All to a man voted to stand it
out as long as they had life. About noon of the fifth day,
the enemy proposed if the besieged would sell them pro-
visions they would leave and not fight any more. To this
the captain replied he would not sell them provisions for
money, but if they would send in a captive for every five
bushels of corn he would supply them. Soon after a few


guns were fired and the enemy withdrew. So ended the
remarkable battle of 700 against 30. Of the enemy many
were slain, but the besieged had none killed and only two
wounded An express carried the news to Boston, and
Captain Stevens' gallant defense won the admiration,
expressed in the gift of an elegant sword, of Sir Charles
Knowles of the British navy, then in Boston, whose name
was subsequently bestowed on the settlement at Charles-

Number Four, as the outermost post with no settle-
ment within 40 miles of it, again bore the brunt of war
through the troubled period of 1754 to 1760, and suffered
many hardships. It received the first hard shock of the
outbreak when in August, 1754, a band of Indians burst
into the house of Capt. James Johnson, siezed the seven
inmates and hurried them all off to Canada. The story of
the adventures and sufferings as told in Mrs. Johnson's
narrative is familiar to many of us.

In 175s the Indians came swooping down the valley
again. About midsummer news came that 500 Indians
were collecting in Canada to exterminate the whole white
population on the river. The settlers were attacked at
different times at Walpole and Bellows Falls, and twice at
Hinsdale. While the assault at Walpole was the last by
the Indians in force, roaming bands continued to infest the
frontier towns till the close of the war. In the spring of
1757, a band of French and Indians came again upon
Charlestown, and attacking the settlers carried five to
Canada and there sold them into slavery as usual, only two
surviving their captivity. After the spring of 1757, Num-
ber Four was under the jurisdiction of the king's officers.
The fort was the rendezvous of various colonial regiments
and a headquarters of rangers.

In 1755 France was in possession of Canada; and the
western shore of Lake Champlain, with Fort Carrillon at
Ticonderoga and Fort Frederick at Crown Point, were also
garrisoned by 200 French regulars, 700 Canadians and 600


Indians; the French also had settlements in Louisiana.
The English occupied the country south of Canada and
west to the Ohio river; Boston was the headquarters and
seat of the provincial government for the Massachusetts
colonies. England and France, aside from European com-
plications, had cause enough for war on this continent,
France having colonized Canada and Louisiana while Eng-
land had established colonies in between, which separated
the French settlements. To connect the latter, and to
exclude England from the great fur trade of the interior,
France began to erect a series of military posts from the
Niagara river to the mouth of the Mississippi. This action
was naturally resented by the English and her American
colonists, and in 1755 the conflict began by an attack on
the French forts in the Ohio valley. George Washington
himself fired the first hostile shot in this, the French and
Indian War, at a place about forty miles from where the
city of Pittsburg, Fa., now stands, and the fight was on
between the French and English to see which should have
supremacy on this continent. The French enlisted some
of the Indian tribes as allies through the influence of the
Jesuit priests, and practised many barbarities. They gave
the Indians a bounty on the captives they brought in alive,
and sold them as slaves to the French residents of Mon-
treal and vicinity. In some cases the captives were held
for ransom, and sometimes when the price came it was
held and the prisoners not liberated. The war had been
continued from 1755 to 1758, the campaign for the latter
year had been very successful for the English, and their
power was steadily waxing as that of the French waned.
Several leading tribes of Indians joined the Six Nations in
treaties of neutrality with the English. Gen. Jeffrey
Amherst, a brilliant and effective officer, had succeeded to
the command of the English forces, displacing the incom-
petent Lord Loudon. In the early summer of 1759 three
great campaigns were arranged by the English, by one of
which General Amherst was to proceed against Ticonderoga


and Crown Point and invade Canada by the northern route.
He accordingly advanced against Ticonderoga, when the
French destroyed the fort and retreated to Fort Frederick
at Crown Point. Amherst followed and the French fled to
an island in the northern part of Lake Champlain. Thus
the whole country around Lake Champlain fell into the
hands of the English.

This brings us to the time of building this road. Gen-
eral Amherst wanted men and supplies for his advance
upon Montreal. Number Four was the rendezvous for
troops enlisted in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, and
the road was necessary. The then unoccupied territory
north of the Massachusett line and between the Connecti-
cut and Hudson rivers was constantly crossed and recrossed
by armed parties of whites and marauding Indians. It
was a vast unguarded frontier, unsafe and liable at any
time to be overrun by savage foes, for which reason what
is now Vermont was not sooner settled and occupied by
the whites.

In January, 1727-1728, the general court of Boston
authorized an exploration of the country between the
northern frontiers and Canada. One party was to discover
that part lying between the Connecticut river and Lake
Champlain. Later traders had explored by the old Indian
trail by way of what is now Springfield, Weathersfield,
Cavendish, Ludlow and Plymouth, thence across the moun-
tains by Otter Creek to Lake Champlain. This was the
route usually taken by Indians coming down to the truck
house at Fort Dummer.

The diary of a journey made in 1730, by a trader,
James Cross of Deerfield, describing the course of the trail
and the country about it, was laid before the government.
The journal read as follows:

^'Monday ye 27th April, 1730. At about 12 of ye clocke we left
Fort Dummer and travailed that day three miles and lay down that night
by West River which is distant 3 miles from Fort Dummer. Notabene,
I travailed with 12 Canada Mohawks that drank to great excess at ye fort


and killed a Skatacook Indian in their drunken condition that came to
smoke with them.

Tuesday. We travailed upon the great river (Connecticut) about ten
miles. We kept ye same course upon ye Great River, traveled about lo
miles and eat a drowned Buck that night. We travailed upon ye Great
River within 2 miles of ye Great Falls (Bellows Falls) in said River then
went upon land to ye Black River above Great Falls. Went up that
river and lodged about a mile and a half from the mouth of Black River
which days travel we judged was about 10 miles.

Friday. We cross Black River at Falls (now Springfield Village)
afterwards through ye woods Nor-Northwest. Then cross Black River
again about 17 miles above our first crossing. Afterwards travel ye same
course and pitched our tents on ye homeward side of Black River.

Saturday. We crossed Black River and left a great mountain on ye
right hand and another on ye left (Ludlow). Keep a N, W. Course till
we pitch our tent after 11 miles travail by a brook which we called a
branch of Black River.

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Online LibraryN.H.) Manchester Historic Association (ManchesterManchester Historic Association collections (Volume 4) → online text (page 18 of 24)