Solomon Clark.

Antiquities, historicals and graduates of Northampton online

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shops, stores, schools, churches, savings bank, all have since
come into existence. Those earliest structures within the
limits of Florence, viz. : the dwelling and oil mill of Josiah
White and the Gains Burt place have a subsequent date. So
at Leeds, first called Shepherd's Hollow. The first business
movement there commenced after 1809. All along the way,
between the Allen Clark homestead, on New Boston or Elm
street, and Calvin Clark's, no houses appeared, except the
Joseph Warner and James Smith's. All quiet at the paper
mill. No movement there on the part of William Butler
until two years later, 1794. It is worthy of notice that
until quite recently three octogenarians were living, born at
Kail Hill in 1794-95, were boys together, viz. : Justin Clark,
Hermon Smith, Dexter Clark. A fourth might be added,
only a year or two younger, Jonathan Day. Two of the
four still live, aged men, born in the Smith and the Cal-


vin Clark house, near the beginning of the Rail Hill set-

Homestead number forty-nine. Eleazar Strong, South
street, son of Ithamar and brother of Capt. David, both
boatmen on the Connecticut. His brother Ithamar, unmar-
ried, was a revolutionary soldier. Eleazar, born in 1754,
bought the land he built on of Asahel Clapp, father of
Theodore, previous to 1780. At this latter date, one hun-
dred years ago, married Mindwell, daughter of Noah Par-
sons, Jr., and Phebe Bartlett. They had nine children.
He and several of his sons were carpenters. Joseph, the
third son, was an architect. Thomas, a farmer, died sud-
denly, July 12th, 1825, from drinking cold water. Eleazar,
the father, lived to be seventy-seven, and his wife eighty-
eight. George, the seventh child, born in 1792, succeeded
his father and married Lydia Bartlett in 1820, with whom
he lived thirteen years. Deceased in August, 1833, suddenly,
by a fall from the aqueduct which he was building on the
old canal, the staging gave way and he fell on the rocks be-
neath, breaking his back. His widow survived him nearly
half a century, until Jan. 23d, 1880. His sons were in the
army, one in the navy, William L., three years in the tenth
regiment, took part in many battles, the regiment belonging
to the army of the Potomac. Henry H., orderly sergeant,
saw nine months' service; in the siege at Port Hudson. Af-
terward station agent at Easthampton. George H., also in
the army, kept a variety store at Northampton. Three gen-
erations lived on the place during an interval of one hundred


Homestead number fifty. Widow Eunice Breck, King
street, mother of Aaron, Moses, and Wainwright, who de-
ceased in 1811, when twenty-one. She was among the


younger of Joseph Allen's fourteen children. See homestead
forty-seven and also number three. In his will, dated in
1776, Joseph Allen says: *'To my daughter, Eunice Allen, I
devise and bequeath the sum of £80 of lawful money, to be
paid her by my son Elijah, in two years after my decease, or
on her day of marriage, whichsoever shall first happen." She
married Samuel Breck in 1777, who bought, in 1781, a piece
of land of Simeon Pomeroy, one-fourth of an acre and four
rods (it being a part of the homestead previously occupied
by Eev. Jonathan Edwards.) Situated on the right hand
corner of King and Edwards streets. Here he first erected
a kitchen part; a few years later, in 1788, built the main
dwelling. The three sons already mentioned were here born;
also, at least, one daughter. Here Joseph Allen's widow,
the celebrated Elizabeth Parsons Allen, spent her last days
with her daughter, where she deceased in the year 1800, re-
spected by the entire community. Here, also, lived to the age
of seventy-seven, and reared sons and daughters, Dea. Aaron
Breck. His two daughters own the homestead. One hun-
dred years have elapsed since the original purchase. Includ-
ing widow Joseph, four generations have lived on the place.
Homestead number fifty-one. Timothy Jewett, Elm street.
Settled in Northampton in 1786. Whole number of his chil-
dren, scTen — four sons and three daughters. All of them
lived into middle life, and one over four score. One son
built and settled in Blackpole, between one and two miles
from his father's. One located among the earliest in Flor-
ence. One always lived at the south, and still lives there.
Timothy Jewett was a mechanic; by his ingenuity a very
useful citizen. Ansel, the third son, lived on the place, had
several children. Two, a son and daughter, lived in Buffalo.
The daughter married Mr. Bradford, a music dealer in that


city. Since his death, she and her children have lived a
part of the time at the homestead in Northampton. Miss
Betsey Jewett still surviving on the place; also, the widow
of Ansel. It has continued ninety-five years in the family
in connection with four generations.

Homestead number fifty-two. Charles Starkweather, origi-
nated at Mansfield, Ct. Located on South street, North-
ampton, Oct., 1787, then twenty-eight. His oldest child,
Haynes K. Starkweather, born the same year. Chosen one
of the selectmen in 1803. Lived on the homestead fifty-five
years and a few months, 1787-1843, until his eighty-fifth
year. His son and successor, Haynes K. Starkweather, con-
tinued there seventy-eight years, 1788-1866, the father of
several children. Frederick M. Starkweather graduated,
taught, fitted for the ministry, but never settled. Deceased
early. Haynes K. Starkweather, Jr., now in California,
filled the ofiice of Selectman sixteen or seventeen years in
succession. Homestead owned and occupied by Charles G.
Starkweather, ninety-four years in that family, four genera-
tions have been associated with it.

Homestead number fifty-three. Daniel Wright, Bridge
street. Now occupied by Miss Anna Wright and her mother,
widow of Ferdinand Hunt Wright, cashier of the old Hamp-
shire County Bank, Northampton. Daniel Wright served as
postmaster sixty years ago. Bought this house in 1808, has
been in the family ever since. A very ancient structure,
has been standing over two hundred years, and goes back to
very early times. Nathaniel Parsons, who deceased in 1807,
lived in it. Supposed to have long been held by the Parsons
race. It has been intimated that Cornet Joseph Parsons kept
his house of entertainment there. Daniel Wright formerly
lived opposite on the Isaac C. Bates' place. That side of


Bridge street, containing several Wright families, was known
at the commencement of this century, as the Wright neigh-
borhood. It occurs to the writer to say in conclusion that
the two most ancient dwellings probably in Northampton:
the Daniel Wright and the Elisha Graves stood not far from
each other, the former on Bridge street, the latter on Market.
Homestead number fifty-four. Capt. Joseph Hawley, Haw-
ley street, afterwards Augustus Clarke's, now George H. Bur-
rows. The first of the three Josephs and the ancestor of
the Northampton Hawleys. A native of Roxbury, a son of
Thomas. Graduated at Harvard, 1674, in a class of three,
under President Hoar, came at once to Northampton, only
nineteen, twenty years from its first settlement, being the
fourth graduate connected with the town. Welcomed by the
settlers, elevated to useful positions, became the grammar
school teacher, representative to the legislature, received the
title of Mr., very sparingly used in those days, given to but
six or eight in the community. Chosen captain of the mili-
tary company, a very high mark of honor. The Court of
Common Pleas, organized in 1692, numbered among its
judges, Capt. Joseph Hawley. He married Lydia Marshall,
daughter of Capt. Samuel Marshall, from Windsor, Ct., a
selectman and a prominent citizen, his house supposed to
stand near the site of the Baptist Church. Date of this
marriage, 1677, twenty-two years of age. Whole number of
their children, seven; an exception, in this respect, among
the Hawley families. Three of the second and third gener-
ations left no children. Of Capt. Joseph's seven, four were
sons, Joseph, Samuel, Ebenezer, Thomas. Thomas entered
college and the ministry in Connecticut, 1713-38. His daugh-
ter lived to be eighty-eight, and her husband. Rev. Nathan
Birdseye, reached the great age of one hundred and three.


They were the ancestors, on the mother's side, of the two pro-
fessors, Josiah D. Whitney of Harvard, and William D. Whit-
ney of Yale; also, of Miss Maria Whitney of Smith College.

Besides the four sons, there were two daughters. Lydia
Hawley, born 1680, married, 1702, Capt. Henry D wight, a
farmer and trader, at Hatfield. A man of wealth and stand-
ing, also for several years one of the judges of the county
court; known best in the community by his military title even
when honored as judge. Military titles in those days out-
weighed in public estimation civil and judicial. The com-
munion service now used by the Hatfield Church, came, it is
said, from Capt. Henry D wight, one hundred and sixty years
ago. On the monument of his wife, Mrs. Lydia Dwight, is
the following: ''The dust is cast down and levelled with
the dust; but not the souls who trust in the Lord Jehovah;
for He is the health of their countenance and their God."
This Capt. Henry Dwight was brother of Nathaniel Dwight,
who lived on Market street, father of Col. Timothy Dwight.
The second daughter of Caj^t. Joseph Hawley, Dorothy, mar-
ried, 1716, Rev. Samuel Cheney, the first minister of Brook-

It is remarkable that of the five Hawleys known in North-
ampton history for over one hundred years, viz. : Capt. Jo-
seph, his two sons, Joseph and Ebenezer, and two grandsons,
Major Joseph and Capt. Elisha, their wives survived them,
in each instance, several years. Lydia Hawley, the first,
outlived her husband twenty-one years, 1711-32. Rebecca
Hawley, the second, survived hers thirty-one years, 1735-66.
Ebenezer's widow lived after his decease thirty years, 1751-
81. Major Josej)h's widow retained the homestead after his
death some eighteen years, 1788-1806. Elizabeth Hawley,
Capt. Elisha's widow, who fell at the battle of Lake George,


1755, after a few years of widowed life, married Phinehas,
son of Lieut. Gideon Lyman. Connected with the foregoing,
note another item. For eighty-eight years, between 1711 and
1806, there was a widow Hawley, at one time two of them,
at another three, living on Hawley street.

The second on this homestead, born 1682, Lieut. Joseph
Hawley, the third child, received at his father's decease, in
the will recorded that year, 1711, ** two-thirds of housings,
lands, etc., of all sorts." Including, it would seem, the
home-lot of four acres on the easterly side of Eound Hill,
which, in 1680, the town granted Joseph Hawley. Cannot
follow Lieut. Joseph Hawley in his military career and ex-
perience. Married rather late in life, 1722, at the age of
forty, Rebecca Stoddard, the eleventh child of the second
minister, and sister of the celebrated Col. John Stoddard,
*^ one of that great trio which had John Pynchon of Spring-
field for its first member and Col. Samuel Partridge of Hat-
field for its second, and which led," so says Dr. Holland,
" Western Massachusetts through an entire century of its
existence." This marriage, uniting the two families, the
Hawleys and the Stoddards, gave to Northampton and the
struggling colonies one of the ablest advocates of civil free-
dom, previous to the revolution, whose influence in hasten-
ing that event was second to no other person, viz. : Major
Joseph Hawley, the last of that race in the town, into whose
hands came ultimately the estate of his ancestors, the prop-
erty of his uncle Ebenezer and his brother Capt. Elisha.
References having been made to him in previous sketches, a
few items only will be introduced. Born on Hawley street,
1724, the oldest child of the family, five years before the
death of his grandfather Stoddard, he graduated at eighteen,
1742, from Yale, one year younger than the first Joseph when


he came from Harvard and took charge of the grammar
school. Commenced the study of divinity probably with his
cousin, President Edwards, then minister of the town. Two
others, Bellamy and Hopkins, about the same time, under
the same teacher, pursued the same study, all three gradu-
ates of Yale. Though young Hawley never settled in the
ministry, yet, for several years making successful trial of his
abilities, this seems to have been his intention. In the pro-
vincial army he officiated as chaplain, being at the siege of
Louisburg. It has been suggested that his health, constitu-
tionally subject to depression of spirits, was inadequate to
the constancy and pressure of ministerial work. His career
as a lawyer, so remarkable, dates from about 1749. For the
next twenty-five years, 1749-74, very extensive his practice,
first in Hampshire county, and after the division, in both
Hampshire and Berkshire. Out of these counties, especially
in Worcester, he seldom practiced. It is supposed that in
point of legal ability, in the penetration, weight and force of
his addresses at the bar on important cases, only one stood
as an equal. Col. Worthington of Springfield. Known to be
strictly conscientious, to entertain a deep abhorrence of what-
ever savored of deceit, cautious not to commit himself to an
unworthy cause, clear, convincing, straightforward, powerful
as a reasoner, meeting every case and point with the utmost
fairness, no wonder his opinions and speeches carried such
weight with juries. His own townsman, a much younger
man, equally celebrated in another sphere. President Dwight;
accustomed to hear Hawley in his palmiest days, says: "Many
men have spoken with more elegance and grace. I have never
heard one speak with more force. His mind, like his elo-
quence, was grave, austere, powerful." Among the number
of his pupils. Gov. Caleb Strong, as a lawyer and a states-


man, reached probably as high a point of distinction as the
teacher himself. " One called to practice in all the counties
of the state, remarked more than once that he found no man
he so much feared as closing counsel as Caleb Strong." An
incident of Major Hawley's patriotic pride, worthy of a place
in this connection, comes out in an interview between him
and Mr. Strong, soon after the two, as representatives, had
returned from the General Court. In a desponding mood,
expressing doubt as to success in the revolutionary struggle,
Hawley added, " We shall both be hung," viz. : for their
sentiments and speeches in the legislature and elsewhere.
We shall both be hung. Strong replied in a way calculated
to touch the pride of his colleague. ^'No, Major Hawley,
probably not more than forty will be hung — we shall escape."
Hawley aroused, replied in his peculiarly emphatic way, *^I
will have you to know that I am one of the first three."
The next day he made a strong whig speech before the peo-
ple of the town. But enough. After 1774, he discontinued
practice, but occasionally presided in the Court of Sessions as
the oldest magistrate in the county. He died at the home-
stead in Hawley street in March, 1788, at the age of sixty-
four. His wife, Mercy Hawley, survived him on the place
eighteen years.

Major Hawley's law library, a part of it purchased of Gen.
Phinehas Lyman of Suffield, containing a valuable collection
of ancient English authors, was mostly destroyed by fire about
1820 or 1822. A few quotations from his will, made, it
would seem, at different times, contain items of interest.
Before doing so, mention may be made of his princely school
donation to the town, valued at about nine hundred pounds,
in land, not including the house. Passing to the will, '' to
the Rev. John Hooker, viz.: in 1755, he gives his folio vol-


umes of Dr. Owen's Works, two folio volumes of Howes'
Works, a volume of Dr. Bates and Bishop Usher's Works.
To his most faithful and generous friend, Capt. Samuel
Clarke, all his wearing apparel of every sort, including his
sword and sword belt, which was his brother Elisha's, also a
volume of Prideaux Connections in token of and most grate-
ful acknowledgement of the hearty friendship which has long
subsisted between us, and the very particular obligations I am
under to him for his faithful, most friendly, generous and
unwearied care and kindness to me and my family under the
singular difficulties and troubles which I have from time to
time been in." Probably referring to that habit or tendency
which at times characterized him of great mental depression.
The above Samuel Clarke, a native of Windsor, born 1721,
by trade a saddle and harness maker, moved first to Hatfield,
1741, then to Northampton, where he married, about 1748,
Eunice Lyman, the daughter of Joseph Lyman. Lived on
the corner of Bridge and Hawley streets; nine children there
born. The place continued in that line over seventy years;
now occupied by Mrs. Washburn.

Continuing to quote from the will: ** Gives to the town a
way upon my land which I purchased of Mr. Joseph Allen,
being part of the home-lot which was Thomas Allen's, de-
ceased, running from King street to Blackpole, upon condi-
tion that the town shall continue the town way, and com-
mon upon which I now dwell, to wit, from the south end of
the barn which was my uncle Ebenezer's, to the northwest
corner of Joseph Clarke's home-lot, unreduced, unstraight-
ened, and of the full extent and breadth." Also, he made
large bequests to Joseph Clarke, expressing the hope that he
would ^' prove worthy, honest, prudent, and a public-spirited

man, and do good therewith in his day." Joseph Clarke


here named, the oldest of the preceding Capt. Samuers nine
children, born 1749, was adopted and educated by Major
Joseph Hawley, married Anna Barnard about 1775, by whom
he had one child, a daughter; the mother died at its birth.
After living a widower twelve years, viz. : on the homestead
at the lower end of Pleasant street on the left, he married
Lydia Cook, daughter of Capt. Josej^h, by whom he had six
children. Anna Laura Clarke, who died unmarried, 1861,
aged seventy- three; Elizabeth Owen, who died 1863, wife of
Samuel Shaw, M. D., of Plainfield; Frederick W. Clark, on
Pleasant street, nearly opposite his father's. Also, other chil-
dren, who deceased many years ago.

The homestead of Major Joseph Hawley continued in the
family through three generations, almost one hundred and
thirty years.

Homestead number fifty-five. Lieut. William Clark, Elm
street, ancestor of the numerous Clark race. If the descend-
ants of this puritan, and of his son, the first Dea. John
Clark, receive as much enjoyment in perusing the following,
associated with the old homestead, as the writer has in as-
certaining and arranging the details, he will feel paid for his
toil. When about twenty-one, 1630, catching the spirit of
religious liberty which then animated so many, he left his
native shores with the Dorchester settlers. With the same
company, in the ship the Mary and the John, sailed the an-
cestor of Gen. Grant. For nearly thirty years, 1630-59, he
continued at Dorchester, assisting in laying enduring founda-
tions, in developing and strengthening the affairs of that in-
fant settlement. Invited by Rev. Eleazar Mather, of North-
ampton, whose father, Richard Mather, preached in Dorches-
ter, he then changed his residence from the eastern to the
western part of the state. How about the journey across


the intervening wilderness, from one extremity to the other,
common roads and comfortable or common vehicles being
then unknown? Let another answer. "He moved his fam-
ily to Northampton in 1659. His wife rode on horseback,
with two baskets, called panniers, slung across the horse,
carrying one boy in each basket, and one in her lap, her
husband, fifty years old, proceeding on foot." Two others,
with their families, shared in the dangers of the enterprise,
Henry Woodward and Henry Curtiff, the former one of the
early pillars of the Northampton church, ancestor of the late
Samuel Woodward, M. D. ; the latter probably the same as
Henry Curtiss, who deceased 1661. The perils surmounted,
the journey completed, the committee apjDointed to apportion
the land to the Dorchester men, made the allotment June
1st, 1659. The record says, to William Clark twelve acres,
viz. : on the west side of what is now Elm street, bordering
on Mill river, including on the southeast the Judge Dewey
or President Seelye place, and northwest where Prof. Story
lives. Such the boundaries, the number of acres, the date
June 1st, 1659, the person, to William Clark. Just here let
it be emphasized that from the foregoing date down through
the long interval of over two hundred and twenty years,
some part of these twelve acres has continued in possession
of one or more of Lieut. William's descendants. But not to

Till 1659, the time of the allotment, it is understood that
no road existed from the center, west; no settler had pushed
out in that direction. Expansion, under the circumstances,
seemed imprudent. In some of the Clark families there is a
tradition that on receiving the twelve acres, Lieut. William
erected a log edifice which he occupied over twenty years,
1659-81, till the time of the fire. Through the carelessness


of a negro servant, who caught up a firebrand and went
into some of the apartments waving and swinging the same,
doing so maliciously, as appeared at his trial in Boston, the
building ignited and was soon in flames. Kespecting Lieut.
William's next house, the writer accepts the statement of
Jared Clark, born 1776, the father of Dea. Jared. He al-
ways spoke of the Elihu Clark house, which stood where
Judge Dewey built, removed by him in 1826, as the one next
reared after the burning of the log structure. Here he spent
his last years, here his wife deceased in 1688, and himself
two years later, 1690. Here some of the family continued
probably till the marriage, 1712, of his grandson, Lieut.
Ebenezer Clark, who there lived and died, 1781, in his ninety-
ninth year, followed by the Elihu Clark line. See home-
stead number twenty-one. A few items may fitly be intro-
duced respecting Lieut. William's Northampton history.
Chosen selectman in 1660, the year after his coming, contin-
ued in the same position almost constantly for the next
twenty years, doing much the same work for the settlement
he had previously done in Dorchester. Dismissed from the
Dorchester church in 1661, united with the new organization
being one of the foundation men, so called, or seven pillars
of the Northampton church. The same year, 1661, at the
organization of a military company of sixty men, chosen
lieutenant, being the highest military officer then in the com-
munity; from that date ever after, received the distinguish-
ing title of Lieut. Clark. Held various judicial offices.
The Court of Sessions appointed him and two others, Capt.
Aaron Cook and Dea. Medad Pomeroy, a commission to '' end
small causes." Also served as one of the Associate Justices
for Hampshire County. Down to near the close of his
Northampton history, when upwards of fourscore, public ser-
vice and public usefulness characterized the entire period.


Marking an important event comes the division of the
memorable twelve acres in the year 1683, between his two
sons, John and Samuel, six acres to each. He gave to John
the southerly part, and to Samuel the northerly. It will
suffice to say respecting Samuel, a public man in his day,
that he and Samuel, Jr., Phinehas and other descendants,
Caleb and Benjamin, occupied the northerly division of six
acres from 1683 down to near the commencement of the
present century, considerably over one hundred years.

But returning to John, on the southerly side, one of the
two boys snugly placed in the pannier on the removal to
Northampton, married, 1677, Rebecca Cooper, of Spring-
field, who died the next year, leaving one child. Mar-
ried as his second wife, 1679, Mary Strong, thirteenth
child of Elder John Strong. The question arises, what
house did he occupy at the time of his marriage? In the
absence of anything positive, probably the one where three
generations of his descendants lived, the same known about

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Online LibrarySolomon ClarkAntiquities, historicals and graduates of Northampton → online text (page 13 of 26)