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Elias Reed, the agent who secured the Cornwall charter,
resided at Salisbury, Conn., and Everts and Reed went
to Portsmouth at the same time to secure charters for
new townships.

In the spring of 1766 John Chipman of Salisbury,
Conn., with fifteen other young men, set out for the new
lands of the New Hampshire Grants, taking oxen
and a cart laden with farming tools and other necessary
articles. They found no house north of Manchester,
and probably no road beyond Sutherland Falls, where
the village of Proctor is now located. In some places
it was necessary for this pioneer band to cut a path.
The party followed the valley of the Battenkill to the
headwaters of Otter Creek, and at Sutherland Falls a
canoe was fashioned from a large tree. The ox-cart
was fastened to the stern of the canoe and was towed up
stream, while the oxen were driven along the bank. In
this manner the young men proceeded to the present site
of Vergennes, where the waterfall interrupted naviga-
tion.

Some of the party settled in Waltham and others in
Panton and Addison. Chipman returned to Connecticut
after a short stay in town, during which time he made
a clearing in the forest. Benjamin Smalley of Salis-
bury, Conn., who settled here in 1773, was the first man
to bring his family into town. The same year Chipman
returned, and Gamaliel Painter and several others
brought their families to Middlebury. Before the Revo-
lutionary War began thirteen families had settled here.



228 HISTORY OF VERMONT

At this time there were no mills nearer than Pittsford,
or Ticonderoga, N. Y.

Newfane — The first settlers of Newfane were Jona-
than Park, Nathaniel Stedman and Ebenezer Dyer, of
Worcester county, Mass., who came here in 1766. In
1772 the Governor of New York granted this town to
Walter Franklin and twenty others, most of them being
residents of New York. These grantees sold their
rights to Luke Knowlton and John Taylor of Worcester
county, Mass., and titles to lands in Newfane are derived
from this charter. The first settlers brought all their
provisions from Hinsdale, twenty miles distant, through
the wilderness. There were only six families in town in
1774.

ShElburne — The first settlers in Shelburne were
John Pettier and James Logan, and most histories say
they came to this town in 1768. Pottier was one of the
original proprietors, and is said to be the only one of
this group who ever came into the town. Logan and
Pottier were associated in getting out oak timber and
rafting it to the Quebec market. Early reports to the
effect that these men were murdered by British soldiers
for their money not far from the Canadian border, have
found a place in various historical sketches.

The Journal of William Gilliland, the founder of
Willsboro, N. Y., a town situated on the western shore
of Lake Champlain, nearly opposite Shelburne, seems to
discredit some of these generally accepted reports.
There is an entry under date of January 31, 1767, which
says : "This day some of our settlers went to see James
Logan, whether alive or dead, they crossed the lake in



CONQUERING THE WILDERNESS 229

a small birch canoe." Sometimes the lake at this point
did not freeze over until late in the winter.

The entry in the Journal indicates the possibility that
a rumor of the murder of Logan, or Logan and Pottier,
may have reached Willsboro, and that the canoe trip
may have been undertaken to obtain information regard-
ing the truth of such a report. No further reference
is made to Logan until March 19, when it is said that
Logan crossed the ice to Willsboro, having returned
from Canada two days previous to this date. Several
other references to Logan are made during the month
of March. This Journal proves that Logan was living
at Shelburne as early as January, 1767, which would in-
dicate that he had come to town as early as 1766. While
he may have been murdered later, the false rumor afloat
regarding his death may have been responsible for this
report.

The two settlements of Shelburne and Willsboro were
closely affiliated, neither having an outlet by roads.
Most of the early settlers were from Connecticut and
Massachusetts.

Shoreham — The charter of Shoreham is said to have
been obtained through the agency of Ephraim Doolittle,
a captain in General Amherst's army, who was engaged
in laying out the Crown Point Road, which passed
through Shoreham and Bridport, in each of which towns
Doolittle became the proprietor of six rights. In the
spring of 1766 Doolittle and twelve or fourteen com-
panions came from Worcester county, Mass., and built
a log house, living as one family, each man taking his
turn in performing the household tasks. A portion of



230 HISTORY OF VERMONT

the settlers left town, owing to the prevalence of fever
and ague. Some time elapsed before any families were
brought here, and only six families are known to have
lived here prior to the year 1775.

SundEri^and — The settlement of Sunderland was
begun in 1766. Among the early settlers were Gideon
Brownson of Salisbury, Conn., Timothy Brownson of
New Framingham, Conn., and several men from Guil-
ford, Conn. Other large accessions soon followed from
Massachusetts and Connecticut towns. A fifty-acre lot
was voted to Remember Baker to encourage the build-
ing of a gristmill and a sawmill.

Vergennes — Although Vergennes was not incor-
porated until 1788, the first settlement within its present
limits was made by Donald Mcintosh, a Scotchman, and
a veteran of General Wolfe's army. As early as 1764
work was begun on a sawmill, which was completed in
1765, and over the possession of which there was much
controversy. In 1769 John Griswold, his five sons, and
twelve families from Salisbury, Conn., settled here.

Rupert — Probably this town was named in honor of
Prince Rupert. The date of the first settlement is not
known but it was earlier than 1767. Jonas Powers was
the first settler. Others came into the Mettowee valley
not later than 1767 ; into the White Creek valley not later
than 1769; and into the Indian River valley not later
than 1771. The early settlers were mostly Connecticut
men, with a few from Massachusetts and New Hamp-
shire, Rhode Island and New York.

CasTlETon — In the spring of 1767, Amos Bird and
Noah Lee of Salisbury, Conn., attended by a colored



CONQUERING THE WILDERNESS 231

servant, set out for Castleton, Colonel Bird having pur-
chased many of the shares of the original proprietors,
who were chiefly residents of Salisbury. From Man-
chester to Clarendon it was necessary to follow marked
trees. The party passed along the northern border of
Castleton, ignorant of the fact that they were near their
destination. Proceeding to Crown Point, they went to
Ticonderoga and Skenesborough (Whitehall), reaching
Castleton by this roundabout route.

The first summer was devoted to exploring and sur-
veying the township. Bird Mountain received its name
from the fact that Colonel Bird, losing his way, was
compelled to spend a night on its summit. He peeled the
bark from trees and displayed the white surface to
scare away wild animals. Log cabins were built and
the party returned to Connecticut in the autumn. The
next year the same party of three came to Castleton.
Bird returned to Salisbury before winter, but Lee and
the colored man remained, suffering severe hardships.
Colonel Bird built a sawmill, and while engaged in the
task he contracted a fever. A physician was summoned
from Salisbury, Conn., who remained until the patient
was convalescent. On account of a relapse the phy-
sician was recalled but Colonel Bird died before his ar-
rival. It is said that the first boards from the new
sawmill were used to make the pioneer's coffin. A few
families arrived in Castleton in 1770. A road was sur-
veyed from the west line of Ira to Fair Haven in 1772,
following the course of the Castleton River.

PiTTsFORD — Most of the grantees of Pittsford were
residents of Massachusetts. Col. Ephraim Doolittle



232 HISTORY OF VERMONT

was the most active, and at one time he owned nearly
one-fifth of the township. There is said to have been
much speculation in town lots. The first settlers were
Gideon and Benjamin Cooley of Greenwich, Mass., the
former being a soldier who had visited the region during
the French and Indian War, and early in the year 1767
they built a log house and made a clearing. Other set-
tlers came soon, among them being Felix Powell, who
was to have the distinction of being the first settler in
the towns of Dorset and Burlington. The Cooley
brothers returned to Greenwich in the autumn, but came
back to Pitts ford the following spring and planted crops.
In 1769 Gideon Cooley brought his family here.

In 1770 seven families arrived in town. Others came
during the next few years, but the population did not in-
crease rapidly until 1774. Some of the settlers came
from Dutchess county, N. Y., but the greater part were
from Connecticut and Massachusetts.

Waltham — Although this town was not incorporated
until 1796, preparations for settlement within its present
limits were made in 1767 by a man named Barton, and
by others, but they returned the same year to Connecti-
cut. In 1768 Barton returned with his family. Being
opposed by New York partisans and by Indians his house
was burned and Barton was made a prisoner. Later he
returned to Waltham and was joined by other settlers.

The towns settled in 1768 included Andover, Bridport,
Clarendon, Dorset, Grafton, Lunenburg, probably Straf-
ford, and Wells.

Andover — The first attempt at the settlement of
Andover was made in 1768 by Shubail Geer and Amos



CONQUERING THE WILDERNESS 233

Babcock. They did not remain in town long, and no
further attempt at settlement was made until 1776.

Bridport — Most of the original proprietors of Brid-
port were residents of Massachusetts. Ephraim Doo-
little was active in the early settlement of this town, as
he was in that of several other towns. Before the end
of the year 1768 Philip Stone came here from Groton,
Mass., and made a home. About the same time two
families settled under New York titles and three under
New Hampshire titles.

For a long time the Crown Point Military Road was
the only road in this vicinity, Lake Champlain, however,
furnished a natural highway both summer and winter.
In times of need the settlers were able to obtain pro-
visions from the garrison at Crown Point.

Clarendon — The first settlement of Clarendon was
begun in 1768 by Elkanah Cook, and he was joined by
other pioneers during the same year. Most of the early
settlers were from Rhode Island. Disputes with New
York land claimants delayed the early settlement of the
town.

Dorset — The first settler in Dorset was Felix Powell,
who came here in 1768, having emigrated to Pitts ford
the previous year. Others came the same year, includ-
ing Abraham Underbill, member of a family whose name
appeared frequently among the proprietors of towns
granted by Governor Wentworth. Another early set-
tler was Cephas Kent, an inn keeper, whose tavern was
to figure prominently in early Vermont history.

Grafton — The family of a Mr. Hinkley, and two
other families came into Grafton in 1768 and began a



234 HISTORY OF VERMONT

settlement, but it was abandoned, and not until 1780 was
there a permanent settlement here.

Lunenburg — Probably the first settlement of Lunen-
burg was made as early as 1768, by Uriah Cross, Thomas
Gaston and Ebenezer Rice, in the valley of the Connecti-
cut River. The early settlers of the neighboring town
of Guildhall came from Lunenburg, Mass., and sup-
posed they were settling in the new town of Lunenburg.
When this town was first settled, moose and deer were
very plentiful, and salmon, some of them of great size,
were taken with the spear at the head of Fifteen Mile
Falls, in the Connecticut River.

Strafford — The early proprietors' meetings of the
town of StrafTord were held at Hebron, Conn. The first
settlers appear to have been James Pennock and Peter
Thomas, who came here in 1768. Several other persons
settled here the same year. Within the next few years
the number of inhabitants was considerably increased,
some coming from Connecticut and others from New
Hampshire. One of the pioneers was Frederick Smith
of Colchester, Conn., who had been employed by several
persons owning lands in the New Hampshire Grants to
look after their interests and visit their property.

WeIvIvS — Most, if not all, of the original proprietors
of Wells were residents of Connecticut. The first set-
tlement was made by Ogden Mallory in 1768. Daniel
and Samuel Culver came into town in 1771 and moved
their families here the following year. Most of the
early settlers came from Massachusetts and Connecti-
cut.



CONQUERING THE WILDERNESS 235

During the year 1769 settlements were made in the
towns of Cavendish, Ferrisburg, Landgrove, New
Haven, Pomfret and Rutland.

Cavendish — Some of the proprietors of Cavendish
visited the town in 1762, and surveyed and allotted it.
The first actual settlement was made in 1769 by Capt.
John Cofifein, and other settlers came in 1771. Most of
the early inhabitants emigrated from Massachusetts.

Ferrisburg — A charter for the town of Ferrisburg
was granted in 1762 by Gov. Benning Wentworth, appli-
cation having been made by Benjamin Ferris. A sur-
vey and division of lots was made for the proprietors
by David and Benjamin Ferris, surveyors. The first
settlement was made in 1769 at the first falls of Otter
Creek, within the present limits of the city of Vergennes.
The first settlement within the present limits of Ferris-
burg was made by Charles Tupper, who came from Pitts-
field, Mass., just before the beginning of the American
Revolution. About the same time a man named Ferris
began a settlement at Basin Harbor, on Lake Cham-
plain.

Landgrove — The first settlers in what is now the town
of Landgrove were William Utley and family, who
came from Ash ford, Conn., in 1769, and settled with-
out obtaining any title to their lands. In coming to
their new home it was necessary to cut a road for
fourteen miles through the wilderness. For some time
Mr. Utley brought provisions for his family from a Con-
necticut River settlement thirty miles distant. In 1780
the town of Landgrove was granted to William Utley
and others.



236 HISTORY OF VERMONT

New Have:n — One of the townships for which John
Everts of Salisbury, Conn., obtained a charter from
Governor Wentworth, was New Haven, which he named
in honor of New Haven, Conn. Few of the original
proprietors became settlers, and some of the owners are
said to have forfeited their holdings rather than pay
their share of the incidental expenses which attended the
surveying and allotting of a township. A few settlers
came in 1769, among them being John Griswold and
his five sons, and twelve other persons came the same
year. The settlement of the town was hindered some-
what by contests growing out of the claims of Colonel
Reid under a New York grant.

RuTivAND — A charter for the town of Rutland was
secured by Col. Josiah Willard of Winchester, N. H.,
and the cost is said to have been about one hundred dol-
lars. The town was laid out along the old Crown Point
Road. The first grantee named in the charter was John
Murray, called the principal citizen of Rutland, Mass.,
and he may have given the name to the new township.
Most of the proprietors are said to have been residents
of New Hampshire.

James Mead and several other persons emigrated in
1764 from Nine Partners, N. Y., a town adjoining Salis-
bury, Conn., to Manchester, in the New Hampshire
Grants. In the autumn of 1764 Mead bought twenty
rights in the town of Rutland, and sold ten to Charles
Button of Clarendon. Before winter he built a log
house half a mile west of the present site of Center Rut-
land, near the bank of West Creek. In March, 1770,
Mead and his family, consisting of a wife and ten chil-



CONQUERING THE WILDERNESS 237

dren, came to Rutland. The log hut had no roof and
it was located too near the river for comfort at the time
of the spring freshets. Nearby was a wigwam occupied
by Indians, who generously granted its use to the new
comers, and proceeded to build another shelter for them-
selves. The Mead family occupied the wigwam until
late in the year, when a substantial log house was erected.
The Meads had an iron handmill, in which corn was
ground into a rather coarse meal. At least four fami-
lies had come into Rutland by the close of the year 1770
and in 1773 the town contained thirty-five families.

PoMF'RET — The charter of Pomfret was obtained from
Governor Wentworth by Isaac Dana of Pomfret, Conn.,
in 1761. Most of the proprietors were friends and
neighbors of Mr. Dana. In an attempt to secure settlers
the proprietors voted to offer a generous bounty to the
first ten of their number who would settle between March
and November, 1762, but no proprietor took advantage
of the offer. In 1769 several log cabins were built
and clearings were made in this town. In 1770 a
number of families came to Pomfret. Isaac Dana, the
leader in securing the grant of the township, died before
conditions warranted a settlement, but a son, two sons-
in-law and a grandson became settlers, and they were
the only grantees who came to Pomfret to reside.
Bartholomew Durkee brought his family here from
Pomfret, Conn., in March, 1770, the party coming on
foot over a snowshoe path, drawing their furniture upon
hand sleds. The settlement was largely increased during
the first two years of its existence. The settlers came
chiefly from northeastern Connecticut and southeastern



238 HISTORY OF VERMONT

Massachusetts, the largest number coming from Wood-
stock, Conn., and Bridgewater, Mass.

The town of Barnet was settled in 1770, but the story
of its settlement will be told in connection with that of
Ryegate, with which it properly belongs, owing to the
fact that both towns at first were settled chiefly by immi-
grants from Scotland.

The towns in which settlements were begun in 1771
included Poultney, Royalton, Sandgate, and probably
Whitingham.

P0U1.TNEY — Most of the grantees of Poultney are
said to have been residents of Litchfield county, Conn.,
and Berkshire county, Mass. The settlement of the
town was begun in 1771 by Ebenezer Allen and Thomas
Ashley, and several families came into the town before
the year ended. Heber Allen, a brother of Ethan Allen,
and one of the early settlers, was the first Town Clerk.
Both Ethan and Ira Allen owned lands in this town.
When Poultney was first settled the nearest mill was
at Manchester, thirty miles distant, but a mill was erected
soon at Pawlet, which shortened the distance nearly one-
half for the Poultney settlers. It is related that one
man living in Poultney carried one hundred pounds of
iron on his shoulders to Manchester, exchanging it for
meal, which he brought home in the same manner.

Royalton — The town of Royalton was granted by
New York to a group of men living in that province,
who were largely interested in land speculation in what
is now Vermont. The town was surveyed and allotted
in 1770. The first settler was Robert Havens, who
came from the neighboring town of Sharon in 1771.



CONQUERINCx THE WILDERNESS 239

Others came in 1772, and the population had increased
considerably before the outbreak of the American Revo-
lution.

SandgaTe — The town of Sandgate was chartered by
Governor Wentworth in 1761, but a settlement was not
begun until 1771, a man named Bristol being the first
settler. He was joined soon by Reuben Thomas, whose
son was the first child born in Sandgate.

Whitingham — This township was a New York
grant, made to Col. Nathan Whitney and others. Prob-
ably the first settlement ivas made in 1771, and the first
settler was Reuben Bratlin, who brought his family from
Colerain, Mass. The party drove a cow and carried
their cooking utensils on their backs. A small iron
kettle was used as a water pail, milk pail and for cook-
ing purposes. It was necessary in the early days of
Whitingham to go to Greenfield, Mass., to mill. One
of the first settlers in town went to Greenfield on foot,
bought a five-pail iron kettle and a half bushel of meal,
both of which he brought home on his back, a distance
of twenty miles, and all the food he had on his journey
was a little meal mixed with water.

The settlements begun in 1772 included Brandon, Col-
chester, Maidstone and Reading.

Brandon — The town of Brandon was chartered as
Neshobe. Many "pitches," or selections of homesteads,
were made before lots could be surveyed, the proprietors
voting that "each man shall hold his lot by pitching
until he can have opportunity to survey it." Only two
of the original proprietors, Josiah and Benjamin Powers,
settled in town. Amos Cutler came from Hampton,



240 HISTORY OF VERMONT

Conn., in the autumn of 1772, made a clearing and built
a cabin. In the spring of 1773 others came from Stam-
ford, Conn., and before the beginning of the Revolution-
ary War several persons arrived from Connecticut and
Massachusetts towns.

CoivCHESTER — The grantees of Colchester appear to
have been chiefly residents of New York. In the
autumn of 1772, Ira Allen and his cousin. Remember
Baker, both destined to play important parts in the early
history of Vermont, with five laborers, embarked at
Skenesborough (now Whitehall, N. Y.) and rowed down
Lake Champlain to the mouth of the Winooski River,
which they ascended as far as the lower falls, in the
town of Colchester. Here they found a New York sur-
veying party, which they captured, and returned after
receiving a pledge that the members of the party would
depart and never return.

After making some explorations and surveys, Baker
and one man returned to Skenesborough, and presum-
ably to Arlington, Baker's home. Allen and the other
laborers continued their explorations until they found
that they were short of provisions. They proceeded
through the wilderness to Pittsford, a distance of about
seventy miles, having but one dinner and three part-
ridges on the way. The party reached Pittsford on the
morning of the fourth day of the journey, being nearly
starved.

In the spring of 1773 Ira Allen and Baker returned
to the falls of the Winooski, Baker bringing his family
with him. A blockhouse of hewn timbers, two stories
high, with thirty-two portholes, was constructed on the



CONQUERING THE WILDERNESS 241

north side of the river, a few rods east of the present
highway bridge between Winooski and BurHngton, and
it was called Fort Frederick. A road was cut the same
year from Colchester to Castleton, a distance of about
seventy miles, by the Onion River Land Company, which
was composed of Ethan, Heman, Ira and Zimri Allen
and Remember Baker. The Aliens were brothers. The
road proceeded in a direct line to Shelburne Falls, on the
La Plotte River, and thence to the falls on Otter Creek
at what is now known as Vergennes, and near this place
the river was crossed. The company, it is said, pur-
chased a good deal of land in that vicinity from the orig-
inal proprietors.

In the spring of 1774 a clearing was made around
the fort in which Baker and his family resided, and
other clearings were made below the falls. One of the
early settlers, who came in 1775, was Joshua Stanton,
one of the grantees of Weybridge. There was a clear-
ing on the promontory known as Mallett's Head on the
shore of Mallett's Bay, where a Frenchman named Mal-
let resided. Nothing is known of his antecedents. He
died in 1789 or 1790, an old man, and it is said the clear-
ing around his house had the appearance of being very
ancient. It is supposed that he had settled there when
the French controlled Lake Champlain, and that he re-
mained after his countrymen had withdrawn from the
valley in 1759. His name is perpetuated by Mallett's
Bay.^

Maidstone — The grantees of Maidstone were Con-
necticut men, none of whom became settlers. Arthur
and Thomas Wooster are called the first settlers, having



242 HISTORY OF VERMONT

come into the town in 1772, but it is claimed that a Mr.
Marsdeen was here as early as 1770. Twelve settlers
came into town prior to 1774, When the first settlers
arrived the nearest mill, and the nearest place where
provisions might be secured, was Haverhill, N. H., fifty
miles to the south. The Connecticut River formed a
natural highway and a bridle path marked by blazed
trees, followed the valley.

READING — The first settlement in Reading was begun



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