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Full text of "History of Bedford, New-Hampshire : being statistics, compiled on the occasion of the one hundredth anniversary of the incorporation of the town, May 19th, 1850"

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University of 
Tl&v Hampshire 



■ ^ 

















Jflaa 19tl), 1850. 


No. 21 School Street. 

18 51. 






The undersigned, having completed the labors assigned 
them, present to the inhabitants of Bedford this volume, 
illustrative of their past history. They gratefully ac- 
knowledge the co-operation, in this work, of the citizens 
generally, and their cheerful assistance in collecting 
materials, furnishing information and fixing dates. The 
Committee have also availed themselves of the town- 
books — graveyard inscriptions — records in family bibles 
— ancient newspapers, and manuscript journals : wherever 
they have resorted to published works, they have given 
credit, accordingly, in the proper place. 

If under some heads, as the Centennial Celebration and 
Genealogies, there may appear to the reader to be too 
much minuteness of detail, it should be remembered, that 
what may now seem to be small items, may in fifty or 
one hundred years hence, be of incalculable importance. 
The only regret is, that such a work was not commenced 
at an earlier period, when much that is now lost was 


within the memory of some living. After all their endeav- 
ors to attain accuracy, it is feared some errors will be found 
in dates and names, as is almost unavoidable in a work 
like the present. In the order of arrangement, too, some 
matter may seem to come in anomalously, being introduced 
in one part, when it properly belongs to another part of 
the volume. But it was hoped — if the important facts 
were given — it would not be viewed of much conse- 
quence whether they were or were not in exactly the 
right section. But the compilation, such as it is, is com- 
mended to the candor of the community. 



Centennial Celebration : — 

Preliminary Arrangements, 9 

Measures preparatory to a History of the Town 11 

Order of Procession, 14 

Order of Exercises, 14 

Address, 17 

Festivities of the Occasion, 52 

Historical Notices of Bedford : — 

Topographical Notices of the Town 97 

Origin of the Township, 100 

Indians on Merrimac River, 102 

Settlement of the Town, 106 

French War, 121 

Revolutionary War, 123 

Changes in Manners and Customs, 133 

Sketch of the Church and Ministry : — 

Ministry, 138 

Church, 159 

Meeting-Houses, 162 

Graveyards, Schools, Bridges, Remarkable Events, &c. : 

Graveyards, 172 

Schools, 174 

Bridges, 176 

Pounds, 178 

Mills, 179 


Fatal Casualties, Remarkable Cases of Preservation, &c. 181 

Extracts from Hon. Matthew Patten's Journal, 184 

Notices of Changes in the Occupancy of Farms in the 

past and present times, 187 

Miscellaneous Statistics : — 

Physicians who have Practised in Bedford, 1"8 

Lawyers, 199 

Sacred Music, 200 

Hops, 203 

Fish, Wild Game, etc 204 

Population of Bedford, 206 

Bills of Mortality /or the last Twenty-five Years, 207 

Longevity, 207 

Marriages, 208 

Graduates of Colleges, 213 

Town Officers, 214 

Justices of the Peace and of the Quorum, 223 

Coroners, 228 

Military Statistics, 229 

Sketch of Piscataquog Village, 234 

Biographical Sketches : — 

Col. John Goffe, 242 

Major John Goffe 246 

Rev. Joseph Goffe, 247 

Dea. John Holbrook, 254 

Hon. John Orr, 254 

Hon. Benjamin Orr, 258 

Rev. Isaac Orr, 263 

William Parker, Esq., 266 

Hon. Matthew Patten, 268 

David Patten, Esq., 268 

John Rand, Esq., 269 

Isaac Riddle, Esq., 271 

Hon. John Vose, 272 

John Wallace, Esq.,. 273 

Aunt Sprague, 275 


Genealogies of Old Bedford Families : — 

Abbott, 278 

Adams, 279 

Aiken, 279 

Atvvood, 284 

Barnes 286 

Barr, 289 

Barron, 290 

Bell, 291 

Boynton, 292 

Burns, 293 

—Chandler 294 

Darrah 297 

Dole, or McDole 298 

Furguson, 299 

French, 300 

Gage, 306 

Goffe, 306 

Gordon 303 

Hall, 310 

Hogg, 311 

Holbrook 311 

Jenness, 312 

Mack 313 

Manning 313 

McAffee, 314 

McLaughlin, 315 

McQuesten, 316 

Martin, 316 

Moore, 317 

Orr, 320 

Parker 323 

Patten, 324 

Prichard, 326 

Rand • 326 

Riddle, 327 

Spofford, 334 

Shepard, 335 


Smith, 337 

Stevens, 33S 

Swett, 339 

Vose , 340 

Walker, 341 

Wallace, 344 

Woodbury, 348 

Appendix, , 35& 





Notice was given publicly by advertisement and from the 
pulpit, that a meeting of the inhabitants of Bedford would be 
held at the Town-House, on Wednesday, Feb. 7th, 1849, to 
take into consideration the approaching 19th of May, 1S50 ; 
which completed a Century from the incorporation of the 
town. Met according to notification. 

Voted, — Samuel Chandler, Esq., Chairman of the meeting, 
and Dr. P. P. Woodbury, Secretary. 

After discussing for some time the subject of the call, it 
was thought expedient to commemorate the day by a public 
address — and such other exercises as maybe thought best at 
some future day. 

Voted, — That a Committee of three be appointed by the 
chairman to have the subject brought before the town, by an 
article in the warrant for the annual town-meeting, in March 
next, and address the citizens on the subject at that time ; 
P. P. Woodbury, Thos. Savage and William Patten, were 
appointed this committee. 

At the annual March meeting, an article to this effect hav- 
ing been inserted in the warrant, the subject was presented, 
and received with the most cordial feelings by the inhabitants, 
and it was — 



Voted, — That they would celebrate the day, — and that 
the same individuals, P. P. Woodbury, Thos. Savage and 
W. Patten, be a committee to carry the same into effect. 

The committee met at Dr. Woodbury's, March 23d, 1849. 
After consultation, it was agreed to direct the following 

letter \ 

Bedford, March 23d, 1849. 
Isaac O. Barnes, Esq. 

Dear Sir : — The undersigned, being a committee ap- 
pointed by the town of Bedford, at their last annual town- 
meeting to carry into effect the commemoration of the 19th 
May, 1850, — that being one hundred years since its incor- 
poration ; — We hereby respectfully invite you to address the 
inhabitants of Bedford, on that occasion. 

The materials for such an address are abundant. 

Yours Respectfully, Peter P. Woodbury, 

Thomas Savage, 
William Patten. 

Boston, March 27th, 1849. 

Gentlemen: — I have the honor to acknowledge the 
receipt of your letter of the 23d inst., inviting me to be pres- 
ent and address the inhabitants of Bedford on the 19th 
May, 1850, — being the hundredth anniversary of the incor- 
poration of that town. 

Although I am highly nattered by the kind partiality which 
has prompted you to extend to me this invitation, yet I assure 
you, gentlemen, I accept with great reluctance and very 
many misgivings, because I am very sensible, that the com- 
mittee could have confided the task to much abler men — 
natives of our town. Yet, under all the circumstances, I am 
constrained to comply with your request, and will, if I have 
the ability to do so, be with you on the day proposed, and 
discharge, as well as I may, the obligation which this call 
imposes upon me. 

I remain, Gentlemen, very respectfully, 
Your Obedient Servant, 

Isaac O. Barnes. 
Messrs, P. P. Woodbury, 

Thos. Savage, J> Committee. 
William Patten, 





The inhabitants of Bedford. Male and Female, are request- 
ed to meet at their Town-House, Monday, 30th of April, 
next, at 2 o'clock, P. M., to see what measures shall be 
adopted to celebrate the 19th May, 1S50. 

P. P. Woodbury, 
Thos. Savage, 
William Patten, 


April, 30th, 1849. — Met agreeably to notice : chose Sam- 
uel Chandler, Esq., President, and Dr. P. P. Woodbury, 

Individuals were appointed to prepare Genealogical and 
Statistical accounts, as follows : — 

To Rodney McLaughlin, was assigned the history of the 

Barron and Martin families. 
AnnOrr, — history of the Orr family. 
Isaac Riddle, — history of the Dea. Aiken family. 
Samuel Chandler, — history of the Smith family. 
Moody M. Stevens, — history of the Moore and Elijah 

Chandler family. 
William P. Riddle, — history of the Riddle and Aiken 

John Gone, — history of the GofTe family. 
Joshua Vose, Jr., — history of the Vose family. 
James Walker, — history of the Walker family. 
Gardner Nevins, — history of the Barnes family. 
P. P. Woodbury, — history of the Gordon family. 
David Atwood, — history of the Bell family. 
Cyrus W. Wallace, — history of the Wallace family. 
Daniel Moore, — history of the Burns family. 
Samuel Abbott, — history of the Abbott and Rand family. 

The above families were thus assigned, because they had 
become extinct in town, or had no representatives that would 
feel themselves responsible without such assignment. 


B. F. Wallace, "was appointed to prepare a History of Piscat- 
aquog Village. The Selectmen, in connexion with the Town 
Clerk, to give lists of town Officers, Representatives, Popu- 
lation, Valuation, Taxation, Support of Paupers, Bridges, 
&c, &c. Rev. Thomas Savage, was designated to prepare 
a History of the Church and Ministry, Schools, &c. P. P. 
Woodbury, table of Physicians. James Walker, table of 
Attornies. Adjourned to May 28th, 1849. 

May 28th, 1849. — Met according to adjournment. Chose 
P. P. Woodbury, T. Savage and W. Patten, a Committee to 
petition the Selectmen to have the subject brought before the 
Town, for their action. 

The subject was brought before the Town at their next 
meeting, and the Town directed the same Committee, viz. — 
Woodbury, Savage and Patten, to do what they should 
think best, in regard to the contemplated celebration ; calling 
meetings, making preparations, &c, &c. Also, the town 
ordered the Selectmen to employ some one to make a map 
of the town, by actual survey, and have a lithographic im- 
pression of the same, to be attached to the contemplated 
History of the Town, by the above Committee. 

(The survey was made, and the map drawn by B. F. 
Wallace, Esq., — see copy annexed.) 

At their annual meeting, the town also voted $300, to meet 
the expenses of the publication ; the money to be refunded 
to the town after the sale of the books. At this meeting, 
also, the town still directed the above committee to procure 
and have the necessary arrangements made, for the centennial. 

April 28th, 1S50. — A meeting was called by the Chair- 
man of the Committee, at which meeting, Samuel Chandler 
was chosen Chairman, and James Walker, Secretary. Imme- 
diate arrangements were made for the celebration. 

The following gentlemen were chosen to act on the 
occasion : — 

President of the day. 


Vice Presidents. 
Thomas Chandler, John McAllister, 

Moody M. Stevens, Theodore Goffe, 

Samuel Chandler, John Patten. 

John French. 


Committee of Arrangements. 

District, No 1. — Leonardo. French. 

2. — Willard Parker and Daniel Moore. 

3. — Isaac Darrah and John Patten. 

4. — John Adams and Adam Chandler. 

5. — Andrew Dow and G. W. Riddle. 
6. — Joseph H. Stevens. 

7. — John Barr. 

8. — L. C. French, 2d, and Thos. Holbrook. 

9. — Charles F. Shepard. 
10.— John Goffe. 

11. — Eljiah C. Stevens. 

12. — Gardner Nevins. 

13. — Rodney McLaughlin. 

14. — James Walker. 
Union District. — Simon Jenness. 

The 19th of May coming on the Sabbath, it was concluded 
to have the celebration on the 22d ; it was further decided to 
supply the tables with meats and other refreshments, suitable 
for the occasion, free of expense ; and, also, that the several 
Committees of Arrangements invite all the inhabitants within 
their respective districts, to contribute money and provisions 
for the occasion ; and further, that the Committee of Invita- 
tions, — P. P. Woodbury, T. Savage and W. Patten, — invite 
all absent friends and natives of the town, with others, at 
their discretion. More than three hundred printed cards of 
invitation were forwarded, and many more that were written. 

May 22d, 1S50. — The Sabbath previous, (the 19th) was a 
pleasant and beautiful day ; the Monday and Tuesday follow- 
ing were very rainy ; but on the morning of the 22d, the sun 
rose with all his splendor and beauty, the day was remark- 
ably fine and brilliant, and this is the more worthy of note, 
as several days after the 22d, were rainy, causing the remark 
to be made — that Providence seemed to give us one delightful 
day, among a number that were unfavorable. As early as 8 
o'clock, A. M., the people began to assemble. On the Satur- 
day previous, the tables, — with a platform for the speakers, 
elevated about four feet, with an area of twenty feet square, — 


were arranged on the common immediately south of the town 
house. It was expected to attend the exercises of the fore- 
noon in the new Presbyterian Church ; but, in consequence 
of the number of people, nearly 3000, it was found to be im- 
practicable. The procession having reached Dr. Woodbury's, 
there received the President of the day, Vice-presidents, Orator, 
Chaplain, and Committee of Arrangements. It then made a 
circuit near the church and back to the common, where the 
company took their appropriate seats, attended with martial 
music. The following is the order of procession, and of the 
exercises of the day : — 

3SeUforB Centennial. 


The Procession will form precisely at 10 o'clock, at the 
Presbyterian Church. 














God, who heard our fathers' prayer 

For liberty and life — 
Who ruled the Elemental war, 

And shielded them from strife — 
To Thee we bend, to Thee we raise, 
With grateful hearts, the hymn of praise. 

Thou, whom our fathers fled to serve, 

Who didst their steps sustain, 
When they their trembling hearts did nerve 

To seek this far domain — 
To Thee their children bend, and raise, 
With grateful hearts, the hymn of praiae. 

God of our fathers, hear us now, 

Incline thine ear, we pray, 
And mercy to their children show, 

Assembled here to-day, 
While they, to Thee, attempt to raise, 
With grateful hearts, this hymn of praise. 






{Tune, " St. Martins." Congregation will unite with the Choir.) 

Give ear ye children to my law, 

Devout attention lend ; 
Let the instructions of my mouth, 

Deep in your hearts descend. 

My tongue by inspiration taught, 

Shall parables unfold, 
Dark oracles, but understood 

And own'd for truths of God. 


Which we from sacred registers, 
Of ancient times have known ; 

And our forefathers' pious care, 
To us has handed down. 

Our lips shall tell them to our sons, 
And they again to theirs — 

That generations yet unborn, 
May teach them to their heirs. 

Thus shall they learn, in God alone, 
Their hope securely stands — 

That they may ne'er forget his works, 
But practise his commands. 




Tune, " Lisbon." 

Roll back, thou tide of time, 

Nor let thy pace be slow, 
And place us where our fathers stood 

A hundred years ago. 

Theirs was a thorny way, 

A rugged path they trod ; 
Theirs too, a noble courage was, 

To dare so wild a road. 

Heroic, brave and true, 

In Heaven alone their trust, 
Our fathers faced a savage foe, 

Nor deemed the act unjust : 

The dark and deepning shade 

Of forests bending low, 
O'er hill and dale was densely spread 

A hundred years ago. 

To-day, with grateful hearts, 

Their memories we recall — 
Commemorate departed worth, 

To God ascribing all. 






This is an occasion of unusual interest to all of us. It is 
an important epoch, not only in the history of our town cor- 
poration, but of the nation, and even of the world, which can 
scarcely be passed in silence, or regarded indifferently. It is 
a point of time, when all seem inclined to pause and review, 
as carefully and as much as it may be done, the events of the 

The end of the present year completes a period of one 
hundred years, comprising the last half of the eighteenth and 
the first half of the nineteenth centuries ; and it may be well 
said to have been infinitely more eventful than any other 
equal portion of time since the apostolic age. One hundred 
years ago, Europe, — enlightened, refined, intellectual Europe, 
— had scarcely emerged from barbarism. George the Second 
sat upon the throne of England. The bloody massacre of 
Culloden had just been enacted ; and had released the then 
new House of Hanover from further fear of the return of the 
Stuarts. Louis the Fifteenth reigned in France. Pope 
Benedict, in the eternal city. Elizabeth was Empress of 
Russia. Philip the Fifth was King of Spain ; and Frederick 
the Great, and Theresa ruled, with despotic sway, in Austria 
and Germany. 

The population of Great Britain was not half as large as 
that of the United States is now. The whole number of 
British colonial subjects, on this continent, including those 
upon the adjacent islands, was less than three millions. 
There was no such nation as the United States ; there were, 
instead, a few feeble and unimportant English colonies, made 
up of exiles from the mother country ; having fled hither to 
escape persecutions, the most cruel, vindictive and unnatural. 
These colonists were still struggling with poverty, and still 
alarmed by constant incursions of the yet unconquered 
savage. The Canadas and Louisiana belonged to the 
French. That adroit and ambitious nation, had, long before, 
established a line of missionary stations from the gulf of the 



St. Lawrence to the falls of St. Mary's, and thence to the 
mouth of the Mississippi : the Jesuits were employed as their 
agents, — an order of the Roman Catholic Church most 
efficient and most faithful to their engagements. It is true, 
at that time, the mission-house had declined, and given place 
to the military garrison ; but the subsequent conduct of the 
savage, along the French frontier, proved, but too clearly, 
that he had been taught to hate the English, and stimulated 
to the most ferocious deeds of cruelty on our borders. The 
treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, concluded only two years before, 
in 1748, while it was said to have secured only a "hollow 
peace " to Europe, really afforded no safety whatever to the 
British colonists here. 

A hundred years ago, the New Hampshire troops had just 
returned gloriously triumphant from the capture of Louisburg. 
A Portsmouth merchant, William Vaughn, had planned this 
expedition ; Geo. Whitfield, the celebrated English preacher, 
then in this State, had furnished this motto for the flag of 
the New Hampshire regiment, viz : " Nil desperandum 
Christo duce." It was, in fact, a religious, and anti-Catholic 
crusade. So were all the inter-colonial wars, in which our 
fathers were engaged, on this continent. Hitherto, England 
had been a second-rate power ; now, since the death of Louis 
the Fourteenth, the splendor of the Court of St. Cloud began 
to pale : the relative strength of the two kingdoms had just 
been subjected to a severe test, — the French had failed to 
restore Charles Edward, the grandson of the renegade James, 
to the throne of his ancestors, — Catholic supremacy on the 
island of Great Britain was at an end. Soon the great 
struggle, on this continent, between these mighty antagonists 
was to come : the tempting prize was all the rich alluvial 
lands in the great valley of the Mississippi. It was soon to 
be decided, once and always, whether the French and Cathol- 
icism, or the English and Protestanism, were to be in the 
ascendant, and control the destinies of this nation. 

A hundred years ago, Washington was a youth, just old 
enough to be enrolled in a military train-band ; the elder 
Adams was not enough of a boy to labor in his father's shop ; 
Jefferson was a mere child, and Madison and Munroe were 
unborn. A hundred years ago, and Wolfe and Montcalm were 
yet to fall in deadly strife before Quebec ; the French were 
to be routed, to lose the mastery of the Canadas and Louisiana, 
and, finally, a footing upon the western continent. 


A hundred years ago, and Louis the Sixteenth, and the 
hapless Maria Antoinette, were yet to fall under the axe of 
the guillotine. Robespierre, Marat, and Danton, were yet 
guiltless of the blood of their countrymen. Napoleon and 
Wellington were not yet ; the fields of Marengo, of Auster- 
litz, and Waterloo had no bloody celebrity. 

A hundred years since, and our colonies had not felt the 
oppression, and encountered the hatred of the mother country. 
The battles of Lexington, Bunker-Hill, Saratoga, Trenton, 
and Yorktown, were yet to be fought. Our own Stark had 
not yet won immortality at Bennington ; nor had our Langdon, 
Pierce, Poor, Cilley, Sullivan, and last, though not least, our 
own townsman, John Orr, and hosts of others, yet earned the 
meed of praise, which is, and ever will continue to be, 
awarded to their patriotism and their valor. And less than 
half a hundred years since, this county of Hillsborough could 
not boast of the heroic achievements of the gallant, but now 
lamented McNeil, nor the fearless Miller. Nor could we speak 
of the fresher laurels, which have just been gathered, by the 
younger Pierce ; and by another son, as brave and as chival- 
rous as the best of them, Bowers, of Nashua. 

But to come to the subject which to-day more particularly 
claims our attention. 

A hundred years ago, there were residing within the limits 
of this town, then known as Narragansett, No. 5, some fifty 
families, comprising from two hundred to two hundred and 
fifty souls. 

These families were scattered along the hill-side, hid away 
in the sunny nook, by the meadow-patch, or buried among 
the dark pines on the border of the great river, which forms 
our eastern boundary. They were an honest, industrious, 
frugal, faithful and pious people. Principally foreigners, or 
of immediate foreign extraction ; they came here for the en- 
joyment of civil and religious liberty. In their own country, 
they could not lift up their voices, in praise and thanksgiv- 
ing, to that Omnipotant Being, from whose boundless benifi- 
cence comes every good and perfect gift ; they could not bow 
down in humble adoration of their Creator ; unless these acts 
were performed after the strict formulas of the Church of 
England. They must have suffered here, for many years, 
all the privations incident to a frontier life ; and yet finding 
out, as they did, gradually, the resources and capabilities of 
the country, they must have cherished strong hopes for the 


future. Alas ! such is the inevitable fate of man, that no one 
of them can be here to-day, to see their anticipations con- 
firmed, or their hopes justified. No living soul, of all who re- 
joiced together, when the civil authorities granted the prayer 
of their petition, for an act of incorporation, giving them a 
new name, and enlarged powers and importance as a people : 
not one living soul of all of them, is left, to join with us, this 
day, in mutual congratulations for the successful issue of that 
embryo effort at self-government. The primeval rocks indeed 
remain ; here and there, a sturdy oak of the olden time still 
stretches forth the same branches, which sheltered our fathers 
from the summer's sun, and which have, so far, defied the 
wintry blast. The placid Merrimack still glides gently by 
us ; but no man, no woman, no animated being, that had ever 
floated on its surface, or laved in its waters, is alive, to-day, 
to render thanks for this, among the thousands of Heavens 
blessings, which have been bestowed upon us. 

" Where are the birds that sweetly sang, 

A hundred years ago ? 
The flowers, that all in beauty sprang, 
A hundred years ago ? 

The lip that smiled, 

The eyes that wild 

In flashes shone 

Soft eyes upon, — 
Where, O where, are lips and eyes, 
The maiden's smile, the lover's sighs, 

That where so long ago ? 

Who peopled all the city's streets 

A hundred years ago ? 
Who filled the church with faces meek, 
A hundred years ago ? 

The sneering tale 

Of sister frail, 

The plot that worked 

Another's hurt, — 
Where, where, are the plots and sneers, 
The poor man's hopes, the rich man's fears, 

That were so long ago ? 

Where are the graves, where dead men slept 

A hundred years ago ? 
Who, whilst living, oft-times wept, 
A hundred years ago ? 

By other men, 

They knew not then, 

Their lands are tilled, 

Their homes are filled, — 
Yet nature, then, was just as gay, 
And bright the sun shone as to-day, 

A hundred years ago." 


I abstain at this time, purposely, from attempting anything 
like an outline, even, of a history of this town, because that 
task has been appropriately assigned to a committee of your 
citizens, and we all anticipate great pleasure in soon being 
able to avail ourselves of the result of their labor and 

I may be permitted, however, to say as much as this, that 
tbe territory was granted by the " Great and General Court " of 
Massachusetts, not far from one hundred and twenty years 
ago. Included in the same grant, was land enough for six 
other town-ships. This grant was made to the soldiers, who 
had served in King Philip's, or the Narragansett War, and to 
their surviving heirs at law, In June, 1733, it seems, these 
grantees, in number, about eight hundred and forty, met, on 
the town-common, in Boston, for the purpose of dividing 
equitably, the property, thus given to them. They formed 
themselves into seven seperate societies, and each society 
organized and chose an executive committee, to look after its 
interests. One of these societies was composed of such of 
the grantees as resided principally in Boston, Roxbury, Dor- 
chester and in that neighborhood. These executive commit- 
tees afterwards, namely, on the 17th of October, 1733, met 
by appointment, in Boston. The numbers of the several 
town-ships, from number one to number seven, were placed 
in a hat, and Col. Thomas Tileston, of Dorchester, one of 
our committee, drew No. 5, known as Souhegan-East, before 
that time. It embraced all the land now within the limits of 
Bedford, and also that part of Merrimack north of the Sou- 
hegan River. 

If this grant was the price of patriotism, it was an act of 
tardy justice to the parties to be rewarded ; for the Narragan- 
sett War had long since ended. The treacherous and vindic- 
tive Philip, of Mount-Hope, had been hunted down and 
destroyed, sixty years before. The dreadful massacre of the 
young men at Bloody Brook, and the terrible penalty after- 
wards inflicted upon the savages, at Turner's Falls, were, even 
then, tales of other times. But whatever was the motive or 
the cause of this grant from Massachusetts, this was the 
origin of Bedford. With very few exceptions, the original 
proprietors of this town sold out their interest in it, at an 
early period. They never came here to reside permanently. 
And I believe it would be difficult to find, to-day, more than 
two or three families, in the whole town, who are directly 


descended from any of the grantees of Narragansett, No. 5. 
I know of but two ; one is the Chandler family, who are 
the lineal descendants of Zachariah Chandler, Esq., of Rox- 
bury, Mass ; and the other, the family of Gardner Nevins, 
Esq., who are the descendants, by the mothers' side, from 
John Barnes, of Hingham, Mass. The town was named by 
Governor Wentworth, no doubt, in honor of His Grace, the 
fourth Duke of Bedford, then Secretary of State, in the 
government of His Majesty, George the Second.* 

Who were its first inhabitants? What was their origin ? 
And what, if any, were the peculiarities of their character 
and condition ? 

I have preferred that a general answer to these inquiries 
should occupy much of the space assigned to me, upon this 
occasion, rather than to enter upon the discussion of topics, 
which, however they may befit the time and place, belong, 
much more appropriately, to others. 

In the first place, then, almost the entire population of Bed- 
ford, was, at the time of its incorporation, of Scottish descent. 
There were a few, and but very few families from the col- 
ony of Massachusetts, and, of course, of English extraction. 
There may have been also one or two Irish families, — of 
pure Milesian blood. And there were some African Slaves. 
Of this last description of persons, there were, in this town, 
as shown by the Official Records, at the commencement of 

*For the gratification of persons curious in such matters, it may be stated 
that the name Bedford, is said by certain very early authorities, to be derived 
from a Saxon word, signifying " beds, or inns upon a ford. " The situation 
of the very ancient and important town of the same name, in England, on 
both sides of the river Ouse, probably contributed to this interpretation of the 
word. Later writers, say, it was'derived from " Buda" or " Beda," which 
means a petty king. The people of Bedford, in England, adopt the latter, 
as the true origin of the name of their town. It may be added, that, al- 
though Gov. Wentworth may have given the name to this town, yet, it is 
altogether probable, that the inhabitants themselves first suggested it, in hon- 
or of the noble Duke, who had for a long time most faithfully and honorably 
administered the government of the Island, from which their immediate ances- 
tors had emigrated. The Duke of Bedford, held the officeof Lord Lieutenant of 
Ireland for many years. The Bedford family, or perhaps we should say, the 
Russell family, is one of the oldest and ever has been, and is now, one of the 
first families among the English nobility. The Present Duke Francis, has never 
been very actively engaged in political affairs, yet he is a man of great energy 
of character and enterprise, and will leave to his descendants, vast and valuable 
estates, redeemed and improved by his industry and his genius, as well as a name 
worthy his noble ancestry. His son and only child, William, Marquis of 
Tavistock, is now heir to the Dukedom. Lord John Russell, the present 
Prime Minister of England, is a younger brother of the Duke of Bedford. 



the revolution, ten. But a large majority of the people, of 
those who made the first openings, run the lines, marked 
the trees, — petitioned Governor Wentworth and His Council 
for an act of incorporation, on the 10th of May, 1750 ; — 
built the first meeting-house, and the first school-houses, and 
first dragged a seine in the Merrimack for shad and salmon, — 
of those, in short, who first came here with a fixed and set- 
tled purpose to abide permanently and to make this place 
their home, — trace their origin to Scotland. They are some- 
times called Scotch-Irish. The reason for this peculiar 
designation, will soon appear. It is true that nearly all this 
class of settlers, or their fathers and mothers, came to this 
country, directly from the great Northern Province of Ulster, 
in Ireland. Yet they were, nevertheless, not Irishmen. No 
Irish blood ran in their veins. The two races were and are 
entirely distinct ; as unlike as it is possible they can be, with 
the same general features, and the same color. The y were 
no more Irishmen, than is a Connaught or Munster-man, who 
works upon our Rail-ways, a yankee ; no more than is the 
European or American missionary or merchant, who takes up 
his residence at Macao, Hong Kong, or at the factories around 
Canton, a Chinaman. The Scotch and the Irish are as 
dissimilar as possible, in their manner of life, their habits of 
thought and action, and especially in their forms of religious 
worship, and irwtheir religious creed. The Scotch are zealous 
Protestants, and Presbyterians. The Irish as zealous Roman 
Catholics. The Scotch were the beseiged, and the Irish the 
beseigers at Londonderry. One party fought desperately at 
the Boyne, Limerick and Aithlone for William, and the other 
as desperately for James the Second. To this general rule 
there are, to be sure, some rare exceptions. There were Irish- 
men who joined the party supporting William and Mary, and 
they have been denounced as traitors and heretics for it ever 
since, by their countrymen. I suppose there were also Roman 
Catholic Scotchmen, though I think it would have been 
difficult to have found many of the latter, who professed the 
faith of St. Peters', at, or near the time of the last English 
Revolution. The protestant Irish are known to this day, by 
the term of " Orangemen.'' But this name was not applied 
to them, until many years after William, the Prince of 
Orange, had ceased to govern England, and to exist. The 
bitter prejudices, and hatred which have been engendered, in 
the old country, between the Orangemen and the Catholic 



Irish, have never abated to this day. And we have frequent 
occasion to lament the intemperate and foolish broils, which 
so often occurs between them, even in this country, where 
both parties are at full liberty to consult their own tastes and 
their own consciences, as to the manner of their religious 
worship, or their religious belief. 

But, the inhabitants of Bedford were neither Orangemen 
nor Catholic Irishmen. They were Presbyterians and Scotch- 
men. Names which are almost synonymous. Born, and 
educated among these people, if I cannot say exactly with 
Byron, " I am half a Scot by birth, and bred a whole one," I 
can appreciate the sentiment of the generous-hearted Jenny 
Deans, when she said to her countryman, the Duke of 
Argyle, referring to her dress, which was the national costume, 
as she was suing through his influence, for the pardon of her 
unfortunate and condemned sister, " I thought your Grace's 
heart would warm to the tartan." 

I can never forget, that my earliest and most intimate 
friends and associates claim a common father-land with 
Bruce and with Burns ; that they could speak of the wild 
highland chiefs as of their own "kith and kin" — that they 
could talk of John Knox, as the founder of their church, — 
that the " Cotter's Saturday Night," was their poetry, — 
that Sir Walter Scott, and the authors of "Douglas" and the 
" Gentle Shepherd," were as much their countrymen, as if 
they had lived on the same side of the Atlantic. 

I can never forget how readily, in the dreamy days of our 
youth, we could transport ourselves, in imagination, to that 
cold, but romantic region of Britain, — " where not a moun- 
tain lifts its head unsung," — that we could climb over the 
Pentland and Grampian hills ; fly o'er the " peak of Ben 
Lomond," — take a sail upon Loch-Katrine — inspect the 
ramparts and battlements of castles Stirling and Dunbar — 
search the rooms in Holyrood House — find the blood-stains 
of Rizzio — deplore the fate of the unfortunate, perhaps, the 
guilty, Mary ; and repeat with the poet, — 

"She was a woman, and let all 
Her faults be buried with her." 

We did more than this. We stole away, again and again, 
into that fairy-land, which, the belief in the supernatural, 
has, for ages, firmly established in Scotland; there we danced 


with witches and warlocks, and consorted with Brownies, 
Kelpies, and Water-wraiths : or, under the guidance of the 
great poet of nature, we hied away to the castle of Macbeth, 
became familiar with the " wierd sisters ;" " the white 
spirits and black, red spirits and gray," who first seduced 
the Scottish Thane, by fair promises and deceitful predic- 
tions, into murdering his kinsman and his sovereign ; and 
then, like the arch-fiend they served, left him in his 
extremity, miserably to perish, the victim of his own 
and his wife's wicked ambition. We could see, as palpably 
as could the guilty assassin himself, the air-drawn dagger 
that informed him of the " bloody business " upon which 
he was intent. We beheld also the ghost of Banquo, whose 
ugly visage and ill-timed visit so marred the feast, and 
frightened the host from his propriety. We saw " Birnam- 
wood come to Dunsinane," and heard the last agonizing cry 
of the dying tyrant. 

We could scarcely fail to be reminded of the national 
character of our friends and neighbors, by listening to their 
sofigs. It is true there was no Wilson, nor Sinclair, nor 
Dempster to sing them ; yet, I assure you, "John Ander- 
son, my Jo," has been given here with great effect, we being 
the judges. How often has our boyish patriotism been 
aroused by " Bruce's Farewell ; " — the sentiment of the 
" Banks and Braes of Bonny Doon," has heen felt and appre- 
ciated here, as well as the "Farewell to Ayershire," and 
"Flow gently, sweet Afton : " — no flower was ever so sweet 
as the " Flower of Dumblain," as we have had it, with its 
sweeter accompaniments. And was there ever sung or said 
a nobler sentiment than — "A man 's a man for a' that, and 
a' that." 

Need any one be told who composed the church and 
congregation here, when he, who ministered so many years at 
the altar, who solemnized the marriage-contracts, who officia- 
ted at the holy rites of baptism, who lifted up his hands in 
prayer, at the bed-side of the sick and the dying, was none other 
than a lineal descendant of that Highland clan, whose name 
he bore, and who "ever scorned tp turn their backs on friend 
or foe." And of whom the song says: — 

" While there's leaves in the forest and 
Foam on the river, 
Mac Gregor, despite them, shall 
Flourish forever." 



Again the Caledonian characteristics appeared as we saw, 

" On a winter's night, our granum spinnin, 
To make a web of good fine linnen." 

But, alas ! many of us are compelled to acknowledge that 
these youthful remembrances are fading out ; that we have 

" Wandered mony a weary foot, 
Sin' auld lang syne," 

and that we are only too happy to avail ourselves of an 
occasion like the present, to come home, and say, " we can- 
not but remember that such things were, and that they were 
most precious to us." 

As for myself, I adopt with all my heart, and assume as 
my own, the answer of the noble Duke, to the affectionate 
Jenny Deans before referred to. " MacCullum More's heart 
must be as cold as death, when it does not warm to the 

Our earliest inhabitants were then, Scotch, in their origin ; 
but they were called Scotch-Irish. Let us turn back to the 
written history of this peculiar people, and see what we can 
learn of them. We must commence as early as the reign of 
James the First, in 1603. Elizabeth, his immediate predeces- 
sor, had carried out, during her time, the rigorous and unre- 
lenting policy of her father, Henry the Eighth, in harassing and 
persecuting her Catholic subjects ; and especially, the Irish 
portion of them. By this means, the spirit of rebellion was 
fostered, not subdued, in that unfortunate Island. James, had 
not seen the end of the second year of his reign, before he 
was called upon to crush the conspiracies of Tyrone and 
Tyrconnel of Ulster, and soon to put down the rebellion of 
O'Dogherty and others. These conspirators and rebels, hav- 
ing either fled from their country, or having been slain in the 
several contests in which they were engaged, a very large 
section of the Province of Ulster, covering six counties, 
equal to a half a million of acres, reverted to the crown. 

It became very important to James, to repeople this deserted 
territory, not only with loyal subjects, but with those of the 
Protestant faith. 

For the early history of the Scotch-Irish, both while they 
were at home, and since their emigration to America, I am 
greatly indebted to Dr. William Henry Foote, of Virginia, 


who has, very recently, given to the world, two large volumes, 
one, entitled Sketches of North-Carolina, and the other, 
Sketches of Virginia ; both of which, are filled, with highly 
interesting matter ; chiefly touching the history of the Pres- 
byterians, who came to this country at a very early period. 
He says, " that in the fulfilment of this design," that is, in 
furnishing Ulster Province with Protestants, " he (James) 
planted those colonies, from which, more than a century 
afterwards, those emigrations sprang, by which western Vir- 
ginia and the Carolinas were in a great measure peopled." 
He might have included also, Londonderry, Bedford, New 
Boston, Antrim, Peterborough and portions of the inhabitants 
of many other towns, in this State, as well as of many 
towns in Massachusetts and Vermont. " The project of 
James," he goes on to say, " was grand and attractive, and in 
its progress, to complete success, formed a race of men, law- 
loving, law-abiding, loyal, enterprising freemen ; whose 
thoughts and principles, have had no less influence in mould- 
ing the American mind, than their children to make the 
wilderness blossom as the rose." 

The King seems, very naturally, to have selected his own 
countrymen, the Scotch, as far as he could, to take possession 
of these vacant lands which were now desolate, over-run 
with wood and infested with noisome wild beasts. But the 
Scotch, needy as they were, very reluctantly complied with 
the wishes of their sovereign ; so forbidding was this Irish 
province, in all its aspects, that it was deplored as a calamity 
to be compelled to remove thither : and it was often sneer- 
ingly and reproachfully said of the unfortunate or the guilty, 
"Ireland will be your latter end." In 1626, it began to 
improve rapidly ; — an unusual religious excitement having 
prevailed throughout the province, attracted the attention of 
the Presbyterians of Scotland, and many ministers and their 
congregations hastened to Ireland, where, by their labors and 
unwearied efforts, they ultimately helped to lay the founda- 
tion of the Irish Presbyterian Church. One of the immediate 
results of this revival, was the establishing the Antrim 
Monthly Meeting, which afterwards came to be a very 
interesting and important religious association. The pro- 
vince of Ulster contrasts very favorably with any other portion 
of Ireland to this day. The General Assembly of the 
Presbyterian Church of Ireland lately addressed a letter to 
the General Assembly of the same church in the United 



States; in which they say, "that, in Ulster, where their 
principles are more widely disseminated, the recent visitation 
of the famine and pestilence was much less severe, than in 
those provinces in which the Roman system still unhappily 
maintains its degrading and paralyzing ascendancy." Macau- 
lay says, " that whoever passes from a Roman Catholic to a 
Protestant county in Ireland, finds that he has passed from a 
lower to a higher grade of civilization ; " and this is con- 
firmed by the statements of all observing travellers. In 
1631, having heard of the success of their puritan friends, 
the Independents, or Separatists, who had settled at Ply- 
mouth eleven years before, and learning also that the Salem 
settlement, then three years old, was prosperous, the Pres- 
byterians of Ulster anxious to escape, if possible, from the 
injustice of the perfidious Charles the Second, whose reign 
had just commenced, began to make preparations to remove 
to America. Agents were appointed, who proceeded to 
London, to procure a passage to New England ; but for some 
reasons, unexplained, the project was defeated for a time. 
Soon after this, " they sent over an agent who pitched upon 
a tract of land near the mouth of the Merrimack river, whither 
they intended to transplant themselves." This fact is stated 
by Cotton Mather. The expedition, which was undertaken 
in pursuance of the report of this agent, failed, as we shall 
see ; but it is more than probable, that this was the cause of 
the settlement of our Londonderry, nearly a century after- 
wards : for we find the Ulster emigrants, who landed in 
Boston and Portland in 1718, immediately inquiring for lands 
on the Merrimack river, and there they did ultimately settle 
and remain. 

But the attempt to reach New England, which was made 
in 1636, failed. The vessel, which sailed from Lock-Fergus, 
a port very near Belfast, in Ireland, on the 9th of September, 
was of one hundred and fifty tons burthen ; she received 
on board one hundred and forty emigrant passengers, — 
her name was " The Eagle Wing: 1 Four of her passen- 
gers were distinguished preachers, — Blair, Livingston, 
Hamilton, and McClelland. Among others on board, there 
were families of the name of Stuart, Agnew, Campbell, 
Summerville and Brou-n. She was bound to New England. 
She was following directly and immediately in the track of 
the " May-Flower.''' Her passengers were to have settled 
upon the Merrimack, — our Merrimack river. The "Eagle 
Wing " never reached her port of destination ; but we will 


allow one of her passengers, the Rev. John Livingston, to 
give us the reasons for her failure. " We had," he says, 
" much toil in our preparation, many hindrances in our out- 
setting, and both sad and glad hearts in taking leave of our 
friends ; at last, we loosed from Lock-Fergus, but were 
detained sometime, by contrary winds, in Lock-Regan, in 
Scotland, and grounded the ship to look for some leaks in 
the keel : yet, thereafter, we set to sea, and, for some space, 
had fair winds, till we were between three and four hundred 
leagues from Ireland, and no nearer the banks of Newfound- 
land, than any place in Europe. But, if ever the Lord spoke 
by his winds, and other dispensations, it was made evident to 
us that it was not his will that we should go to New England, 
for we met with a mighty heavy rain from the north-west, 
which did break our rudder, which we got mended by the 
skill and courage of Captain Andrew Agnew, a godly passen- 
ger, and tore our foresail, five or six of our champlets, and a 
great beam under the gunner's room-door broke ; seas came 
in over the round-house, and broke a plank or two on the 
deck, and wet all that was between the decks ; we sprang 
a leak, that gave us seven hundred, in the two pumps, in the 
half-hour glass. Yet we lay at hull a long time, to beat out 
the storm, till the master and company came, one morning, 
and told us that it was impossible to hold out any longer, and 
although we beat out that storm, we might be sure, in that 
season of the year, to forgather with one or two more of that 
sort, before we could reach New England." The account 
goes on to state, " that amidst all the fears and dangers, the 
most part of the passengers were very cheerful and confident ; 
yea, some, in prayers, expressed such hopes, that rather than 
the Lord would suffer such a company, in such sort, to perish, 
he would put wings to our shoulders and carry us safe ashore." 
Several of the passengers were sickly ; an aged person and 
one child died ; one child was born on ship-board. It was 
baptized by Mr. Livingston, and called Seaborn. After a 
long and most anxious consultation, with a fervent prayer to 
Almighty God for wisdom to direct them, the passengers 
agreed to yield to the earnest solicitations of the master. 
The ship was put about, and re-entered the harbor of Lock- 
Fergus on the 3d of November, having been absent about 
eight weeks. 

The u Eagle-Wing" left the shores of Ireland, as did 
the May-Flower those of Holland, with the same high 


purpose, of finding a new habitation, where there was 
" freedom to worship God.' 1 '' The " May-Flower " succeed- 
ed in reaching this continent ; though, it is said, through the 
treachery" of her master, at a point, very distant from that, 
to which she was destined. The "Eagle-Wing" was 
compelled, by stress of weather, to return again to the land 
of religious intolerance. 

The company of pious and devoted ministers, and their 
congregations, who left Ulster, in this vessel, with flattering 
hopes for the future, and who returned disheartened and 
cast down, had yet, in the Providence of God, a great work 
entrusted to their agency. " This company of men," as Dr. 
Foote says, " were, subsequently, the efficient agents in the 
hands of God of embodying the Presbyterians of Ireland, of 
spreading their principles far and wide, and marshaling 
congregation after congregation, whose industry made Ulster 
blossom as the rose. It was better that God's wise Providence 
sent them back to Ireland, and shut them up to the work — 
and last, it was best of all, that they laid the foundation of 
that church, which may claim to be the mother of the Amer- 
ican Presbyterian Church, the worthy child of a worthy 

We must now leave, for a while, this little group of pas- 
sengers, who composed the freight which the " Eagle- Wing" 
was too feeble to bear across the broad Atlantic, during the 
Autumnal gales of 1636. We are obliged to leave them in 
bad company, and, under circumstances most inauspicious ; 
for we leave them to the tender mercies of the faithless 
Charles the First ; to the uncertain and dangerous discretion of 
the shrewd, ambitious and unforgiving Oliver Cromwell ; 
to the reckless and shameful profligacy of Charles the Second ; 
and to the knavery and stupidity of the bigoted James the 
Second. Meanwhile, we must hasten to the consideration 
of some passages in their subsequent history, immediately 
connected with their actual emigration to this country. 

Pass on with me now, for the space of fifty-two years, 
from 1636 to 1688. James the Second — the great-grandson 
of Mary, Queen of Scots, whom Elizabeth may almost be 
said to have murdered from envy, and the son of Charles the 
First, who perished on the scaffold, because he kept faith 
with no party, — had abdicated the throne of England. He 
had previously sent his wife, Mary of Modena, and his infant 
and only son, to France. All his relatives had deserted him. 


Even his daughter Anne, and her husband, the Prince of 
Denmark, had fled from his palace in the night. He, himself, 
having seized the great seal of state, stole from his bed- 
chamber at early dawn, hastened to a boat, in readiness for 
him, threw the seal into the Thames and escaped down that 
river. After some further difficulties and delays, he reached 
Paris in safety. His eldest daughter, the offspring of his 
first wife, and her husband, William of Orange, were now 
proclaimed jointly King and Q,ueen of England. 

James, being in France, was urged and entreated, by the 
Catholic Louis, to return to Ireland, from which he had lately- 
heard reports favorable to his cause, and to make a struggle 
to re-gain his crown. He at last complied, though with 
great reluctance, and being provided with twelve thousand 
French troops, a train of artillery and a supply of money, he 
landed in Kinsale, Ireland, in March, 1689. Stopping, for a 
very short time, at Dublin, he hastened to the north of 
Ireland, to o\ir Ulster, with his foreign allies, and sat down 
before Londonderry, then in a state of seige. 

You will pardon me, I feel assured, for recalling to your 
recollection some of the incidents, connected with the " seige 
of Derry, ,} when you reflect upon the important bearing, 
which it had upon the character and destinies of our Pres- 
byterian friends in the north of Ireland and their posterity, 
here and elsewhere. 

I confine myself to Graham's account of it. On the third 
of December, 1688, an alarm was spread throughout the 
island, that the Catholic Irish had determined to rise and 
murder indiscriminately the protestants, on the next sabbath. 
The messenger, who carried this news to Deny, reported 
that on his way, he had passed the Catholic troops, and that 
their advance guard was close upon the city. All was 
consternation and dismay. There were no military prepar- 
ations for defence. The citizens ran together, each eagerly 
and anxiously inquiring what could be done. Many advised 
to open the gates and give their invaders an honorable recep- 
tion. A few, bolder, and with better judgment, insisted that 
the gates should be shut, and that the soldiers should be. 
resisted to the death. Among these were the Rev. James 
Gordon, of Clondormet, and Horace Kennedy, one of the 
Sheriffs. At length, there assembled a group of the " Ap- 
prentices " to the manufacture of linen, (a large business at 
that time in Deny.) These spirited apprentice boys heard 
the discussion of the public authorities, and perceived the 


danger to which the city was exposed. The soldiers began 
to cross the river and approach the walls of the town. 
A few of the leaders of the Apprentices immediately seized 
the keys and rushing to the gates; shut them in the face of 
the enemy. 

The seige was now commenced. The entire space, in- 
closed within the walls, was only two thousand feet in its 
longest diameter, and six hundred in its smallest. And yet 
there were shut up in this city, twenty-seven thousand persons, 
who were doomed to endure, for eight long months, famine 
and pestilence, constant exposure to the fire from the enemies 
batteries, and all the concurrent horrors which the imagination 
can conceive to exist under such cirumstances. So feeble did 
the defences of the city appear, to De Rosen, the French 
officer, who came over with James, when he first saw 
it, that he exclaimed, with a disgusting oath, that " his 
men should bring it to him stone by stone." The French 
general was mistaken — he knew little of the determined 
energy of the men, women, and apprentice boys, with whom 
he had to contend. Exasperated, at length, that no offer to 
capitulate was made, he resorted to the brutal expedient 
of collecting from Belfast, (distant a hundred miles from 
Derry,) and its neighborhood, over four thousand men, 
women, and children, of the Protestant party, without regard 
to condition ; robbed them of their food and clothing, and 
drove them like so many cattle, under the walls of Derry, to 
perish in view of their friends. 

To prevent this inhuman and barbarous destruction of life, 
the authorities of Derry erected a gallows on the walls of the 
town ; sent to De Rosen for a priest to confess the prisoners, 
(some of them distinguished French officers,) assuring the 
general, that they should be hung, one by one, until there 
were no more to execute ; unless he permitted the multitude 
under the walls to depart. This retaliatory measure pro- 
duced the desired effect. The Belfast people were released, 
but not till hundreds had perished from starvation and 
exposure. In all the agony and despair of these unfortunate 
beings, while held by the infamous order of De Rosen, there 
was none of them but what urged their friends, within the 
walls, to hold on and hold out, and not to yield in sympathy 
to the sufferings of those on the outside. But I must not 
continue these horrible details. It suffices to say, that after 
having been reduced to the extremity of eating horse-flesh, 


of feeding upon dogs, cats, rats and mice, and when, at last, 
there remained but half a pint of meal to a man per day, 
when the soldiers began to glare upon the citizens, and upon 
each other, with the famished look of starving cannibals, 
the long hoped for relief came. The ships of King William 
hove in sight, with men and supplies. The seige was raised. 
The army departed ; but not until the Catholic party had 
lost nine thousand of their soldiers and more than two hun- 
dred of their officers. 

It would be difficult to find, in the whole history of modern 
warfare, an example of such endurance, of so much personal 
suffering, of such devotion to the cause in which they were 
engaged, as was exhibited by these resolute Presbyterians in 
the defence of their homes and their religion, at the seige of 

The vast importance to the cause of Protestantism and the 
English government, of the successful defence of this for- 
tress, will be appreciated, when it is understood that James 
anticipated its speedy reduction, and had made his arrange- 
ments to cross directly over to Scotland, join the infamous 
Claverhouse, make a rapid descent upon England, and drive 
his son-in-law, William, back to his native Nassau. The names 
of these apprentice boys, who so nobly shut the gates, and 
thus defeated the ultimate purposes of the beseiging party, 
as Graham says, " deserve to preserved in letters of gold." 
Many, very many of their descendants, are now to be found 
in this country. They are known to be in Virginia, Ken- 
tucky. Indiana, here in New Hampshire, and doubtless, in 
many other states of the Union. The leaders, and more 
prominent of these young men, were William Crookshajiks, 
Robert Sherrad, Daniel Sherrad, Alexander Irwin, James 
Stewart, Robert Morrison, Alexander Conni?igham, Wil- 
liam Cairns and Samuel Harvey. 

Never were a people more unfortunate after all their efforts, 
than were these brave Presbyterians! They had held the 
troops of James in check, while they defended successfully 
the last stronghold of King William in Ireland : and until 
Claverhouse had been attacked and destroyed in Scotland. 
They had freely mingled their blood with the waters of the 
Boyne. They had consecrated the " billowy Shannon," that 
" river of dark mementos," by the sacrifice upon its banks, 
of their dearest friends, before the gates of Limerick and 
Aithlone. They had, in short, expelled James and his allies 


from the land, and were looking with great confidence for 
something like tolerance in religious belief and religious wor- 
ship, from William of Nassau and his protestant wife. But 
they were doomed to the sorest disappointment, and ultimate- 
ly became so disgusted with the calculating and selfish 
policy of William, his unreasonable and unjust demands of 
rents and tythes, as well as with the exactions and persecu- 
tions of the Anglican church, which now came to be regarded 
by them, as little better than the Roman Catholic, that they 
determined, once and forever, to abandon their country, and 
seek refuge in the wilds of America. 

The tide of emigration, now began to flow towards this 
country. " Ship load, after ship load," sailed from Ulster, 
with better success, than had attended the "Eagle-Wing." 
These vessels reached our shores in safety, and the de- 
scendants of the immigrant passengers, whom they bore 
hither, may be counted to-day, by the thousands and tens of 
thousands, on the broad fields of Pennsylvania, in Virginia, 
in the Carolinas ; in every portion of the sunny South. 
Away across the mountains, in Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, 
and everywhere, in the mighty West ; and here, among our 
own Granite-Hills ; and, indeed, in greater or less numbers, 
throughout the entire Union ; the same conscientious, deter- 
mined, unyielding, persevering men and women, as were 
their fathers and their mothers, who sacrificed every earthly 
comfort, in defence of that cause, the nearest and dearest to 
their hearts, the principles of the religion of Calvin and 

The first Presbyterian minister, who came to America, was 
Francis Mackemie ; and the first Presbyterian church on this 
Continent, was gathered by his exertions, in Accomac Coun- 
ty, in Virginia. He assisted also, in organizing churches in 
Maryland. The precise time is not known : but it must have 
been just at the close of the seventeenth century. His name 
indicates his origin. He also was from Ulster, and Scotch- 
Irish. Mather says, there were " Presbyterian ministers, resi- 
ding in New England, before Mackenzie's time." But, if 
there were such ministers, they very soon adopted the " Con- 
gregational form of disipline." We know of no earlier 
churches of the Presbyterian denomination in New England, 
than that in Londonderry, in this State, which commenced 
with the town itself, in 1719; and the Federal Street Church, 
in Boston, gathered in 1727, the members of both of which came 


from the same common stock, the Scotch-Irish, in Ulster. 
The congregational form of government, was adopted in the 
Federal Street Church, in 1786. It is the same church, over 
which Dr. Belknap, the historian of New Hampshire, was 
settled, in 1787, and subsequently, the late celebrated Dr. 
Channing, and is now under the pastoral care of Dr. Gannett. 

Mackemie's churches were certainly organized more than 
twenty years before either of these. Mackemie was ordained, 
at Lagan, Ireland, as early as 1682. He went first to Barba- 
does, and thence to Virginia and Maryland. He, at one time, 
officiated as minister in the church, which he had assisted to 
organize at Snowhill, in Worcester County, Maryland. He 
was a man of extraordinary intellectual powers, and was uni- 
versally beloved by the people of his charge. Irving Spence, 
Esq., in his letters on the early history of Presbyterianism, 
says " that the memory of no gospel minister was ever held 
in higher honor by an American congregation, than that of 
Mackemie at Snow-Hill. Tradition has made a record of his 
many excellencies, and one generation has uttered his praises 
in the ears of its successor, and you may ever yet hear its 
echo." In the village of Rehoboth, Maryland, near the Vir- 
ginia line, there is, at this day, a Presbyterian church 
organized in the time of Mackemie. Dr. Foote, to whom I 
am indebted for this sketch of the father of Presbyterianism, 
in America, says, " you may find now in Accomac, Virginia, 
a congregation of Presbyterians, rising, Phoenix-like, from 
the ashes of those, who heard Mackemie preach and 

Mackemie revisited his native country, in 1704, and in- 
duced other Presbyterian ministers to come and settle in this 
country. Two of these ministers, were NcNish and 

Mackemie assisted in forming the first Presbytery in 
America, at Philadelphia, probably in 1705 ; though the first 
leaf of the records of that Body is missing, and the precise 
time cannot now be known. The first Presbytery in New 
England was formed in Londonderry, N. H., April 16, 1745, 
by John Morehead, of Boston, James McGregore, of London- 
derry, and Robert Abercrombie, of Windham, with an elder 
from each of these churches. The first Synod in New 
England was formed at Seabrook, N. H., May 31, 1775 ; the 
first meeting of this Synod was held at Londonderry, N. H., 
September 4, 1775. It was composed of three Presbyteries, 


namely, the Presbytery of Salem, the Presbytery of London- 
derry, and the Presbytery of Palmer ; the Church of Bedford 
was represented there by Rev. Mr. Huston, and belonged to 
the Presbytery of Palmer. 

In 1706, Mackemie and his friend and fellow-laborer, 
Hampton, commenced a journey from Virginia to Boston. 
On their way, they stopped in New York to pay their respects 
to Lord Cornbury, then the Governor of that Province ; they 
were treated courteously and, upon invitation, dined with his 
Excellency at the castle. Afterwards, they were invited to 
preach by some Presbyterians settled in New York, and they 
did preach ; Mackemie in the dwelling-house of William 
Jackson, in Pearl Street, and Hampton, on the same day, at 
Newton, Long Island. For this they were both arrested, by 
Thomas Cardale, sheriff, on a warrant, signed by Lord Corn- 
bury, charging them with having taken it upon them to 
preach in a private house, without having obtained a license 
for so doing, contrary to the known laws of England ; and 
being, likewise, informed that they were gone into Long 
Island with intent there to spread their pernicious doctrines 
and principles, to the great disturbance of the Church by law 
established ; and directing the sheriff to bring the bodies of 
Mackemie and Hampton to Fort Anne. They were both 
arrested and imprisoned in the fort ; indicted by the grand 
jury, and, after suffering a long confinement, were brought to 
trial. The prosecuting attorney called four witnesses, who 
had heard Mackemie preach ; but the defendant told him 
they need not be sworn. "I own," said Mackemie, "the 
matter of fact as to preaching, and more than these gentle- 
men could declare on oath ; for I have done nothing therein 
of which I am ashamed, or afraid ; but will answer it not 
only before this bar, but before the tribunal of God's final 

Attorney. You own then that you preached, and baptized 
a child at William Jackson's ? 

Mackemie. I did. 

Atfy. How many hearers had you ? 

M. I have other work to do, Mr. Attorney, than to num- 
ber my auditory, when I am about to preach to them. 

Atfy. Were there above five hearing you ? 

M. Yes ; and five to that. 

Atfy. Did you use the rites and ceremonies enjoined by, 
and prescribed in, the book of Common Prayer, by the 
Church of England ? 


M. No ; I never did, nor ever will, till I am belter satisfied 
in my conscience. 

The trial proceeded, and, in spite of all the efforts of 
Cornbury and his officers, they were both acquitted by the 
petit jury, and set at liberty ; not, however, till they had 
been compelled to pay an exorbitant bill of costs ! 

Would any one believe, now, without evidence which 
cannot be impeached, that such a scene as this was exhibited 
in Protestant New York, under the reign of Queen Anne, 
not one hundred and fifty years ago ? while in Catholic 
Maryland a man might live in peace, whether Jew, Moham- 
medan, or pagan, — whether Atheist, Deist, or Polytheist, — 
provided he neither molested his neighbor, nor endanged the 
public morals. The truth is, that " great moral cataelysm of 
the Reformation, ' as it was called, so far as all the Tudors 
and Stuarts were concerned, from Henry the Eighth to 
Anne, amounted substantially to this, and nothing more, — 
it was a transfer of spiritual power from Rome to London ; 
from the Vatican to St. James's ; from the Pope to the 
Monarch of England. Protestantism was a matter of con- 
venience, merely to the crown. Elizabeth is said to have 
married Protestantism, and to have taken its name ; but, it 
is added, " most of the court Protestantism of her time was 
of a damaged character." It was assumed that the sovereign 
of Great Britain, whoever it might chance to be, man or 
woman, boy or girl, was, jure divi?io, the head of the church ; 
from whom eminated, and in whom centered all spiritual 
power, and all ecclesiastical authority; the head of the 
Church and of the State, was one and identical. The 
immediate government of the church was committed to the 
Bishops, — the lordly prelatical bishops, as they were called 
by the Puritans, — the higher order of the clergy. The 
Anglican Church, thus constituted, became, as it was fitly 
denominated, the " queen, mistress, or nothing," and withal 
was a tremendous political engine, with which to govern and 
control the nation. Henry the Eighth wielded this power 
with a frightful energy; "he burned as heretics, those who 
avowed the tenets of Luther ; and hung as traitors, those 
who owned the power of the Pope." He required uncon- 
ditional submission to his authority, as self-constituted head 
of the Church. His successors, down to the period of which 
we are treating, at least, followed his example, so far as they 
had the ability, and circumstances would permit. 


To this church organization and this form of church gov- 
ernment, the Presbyterians dissented from the beginning, toto 
coelo. They never could, nor ever did, admit but one Great 
Head of the church, the Saviour of the world. They never 
could, nor ever did, admit the unscriptural assumption of 
different grades of the clergy. They never could, nor ever 
did, admit the right of the mother church to prescribe the 
forms of prayer and supplication which should be offered at 
the throne of our Heavenly Father. 

For this non-conformity to the will of the Bishops, they 
have been hunted down, like wild beasts, among their native 
mountains — they have been chained to the sea-shore at 
low-water, and left to drown by the sure reflux of the tide — 
they have been subjected to the excrutiating torture of the 
" iron-boot " — or to the still more exquisite and horrible pains 
of the thumbkin. For this non-comformity, in matters 
purely of conscience, they have "suffered extremites, that 
tongue cannot describe, and which heart can hardly conceive, 
from hunger, nakedness, lying in damp caves, and in the 
hollow clefts of naked rocks, without shelter, covering, fire 
or food." They fell by the hand of the assassin ; were 
slaughtered by thousands, in battle. They have been fast- 
ened together, like dogs in leashes, and driven as a spectacle 
through the country. People have been put to death, for 
daring even to speak to them, in their distress. Fathers have 
been persecuted for supplying the wants of their children, 
and children for nourishing their parents, husbands for har- 
boring their wives, and wives for cherishing their husbands. 
In all these trials, sufferings, privations, tortures, and even 
in the agonies of death itself, they were sustained by their 
own approving consciences, by a steady and unshaken reli- 
ance upon the promises of God, and, above all, by the great 
example of the patient endurance of Him, who died for us 
all, on Mount Calvary. These men and women had sub- 
scribed the national " solemn league and covenant," that 
"copious and poetical creed," that great declaration of the 
independence of the church. They had proclaimed their 
eternal separation, in spiritual matters, from the civil govern- 
ment of the land ; and like the fathers of this American 
Republic, they had pledged their lives, their fortunes, and all 
that was dear to them, to the fulfilment of these sacred 


Were the descendants of such a people, and, especially, 
was Francis Mackemie, one of the most talented and able 
and conscientious of their sons, to be deterred by the threats, 
or hindered by the malice of a petty colonial governor, from 
fulfilling his mission of preaching the gospel, in its simplicity 
and truth, upon the continent of America ? 

But the time was very soon to arrive, when neither Lord 
Cornbury, nor the government of Virginia, nor the Legislative 
nor Executive power of any of the colonies, nor all of them 
combined, could hinder nor prevent the free and unrestrained 
promulgation of the doctrines of Presbyterianism throughout 
the length and breadth of the land. This church was about 
to arise, and, in her strength, to stand boldly forth, and assert 
her rights and defend her doctrines. The people were be- 
ginning to gather around her ministers, and to listen, with more 
interest, and increased attention to their instruction. Soon 
some of her ablest advocates and most eminent teachers were 
to take the field — soon was to arise the first of that series 
of " Log Colleges" which afterwards proved of incalculable 
advantage to the church, and to the people, as the nurseries 
of sound learning and piety — soon, were to appear, the 
Tennents, father and sons, the Blairs, that " Apostle of 
Virginia," Samuel Davis, our own Macgregors, the Smiths, 
Stanhope, and a host of other able and popular preachers and 
"men of mark." The Presbyterian faith and its legitimate 
fruits came to be better understood and more highly appreci- 
ated — the immediate government of every church by elders, 
chosen by its own members — the perfect equality of the 
clergy — those spiritual judicatories, the church session or 
consistory — the Presbytery or classis — the Synod and the 
General Assembly, rising regularly and gradually, one above 
another, each exercising only such powers, as are specially 
delegated by its own legitimate constituency, and all operat- 
ing as a system of checks and balances upon each other, 
present to the mind a model of republicanism, which it would 
be difficult to excel, in framing a civil code, based upon the 
representative principle, for any people. 

Permit me now for a moment, to turn to another and a very 
large and interesting division of the Presbyterian Church of 
the United States ; I mean the accessions which have been 
made to its numbers directly from Scotland. 

The great influx of Scotch emigrants to this country, began 
in 1747. It was the year which followed the battle of Cul- 


loden. It is hardly necessary to repeat a very familiar 
historical account of the ill-advised efforts of Charles Ed- 
ward, the grand son of James the Second, who so ingloriously 
fled from his kingdom, sixty years before, to regain for his 
family the crown, which his ancestor had so foolishly and 
so basely lost. 

With a few friends, a few stands of arms, and very little 
money or means, this enthsiastic young Prince landed in 
Scotland, on the 16th of July, 1745. A portion of the 
Highland clans, and some others from an inherent principle 
or impulse of loyalty for the legitimate heir to the crown, 
and some, perhaps, from a mere spirit of adventure, rallied 
around his standard. At his first appearance, wild and im- 
practicable as his scheme seemed, to the sober and judicious, 
he occasioned, nevertheless, much excitement. It will occur to 
you at once, that this is the same personage referred to in the 
chorus of a popular song of the times, which was " Who'll 
be King but Charlie.' 1 ' 1 George the Second, then King of 
England, became alarmed at the progress of Charles Edward, 
and his followers, and sent the Duke of Cumberland, with an 
army, to chastise the invader, and to punish his rebellious 
subjects in the north. The hostile parties met at Culloden, 
near Inverness, in Scotland. The party Of the Pretender was 
totally defeated ; the principal escaping, barely with his life. 
Cumberland pursued the fallen foe, with unnecessary, with 
even brutal severity, killing in cold blood, the unfortunate 
adherents to Charles, and burning their houses over their heads. 
He received the name of " the butcher" on account of the 
atrocities of which he was then guilty. He carried many of 
his prisoners to London. Many were publicly executed, 
as a warning to the rest of the King's subjects. The offen- 
ders were, however, so numerous, that George II. at length 
changed his course towards them, and granted a general pardon, 
upon the condition, that they would first take the oath of 
allegiance to him, and his house, and then emigrate to the 
plantations. Preferring expatriation, to an ignominious death, 
they, of course, availed themselves of the royal clemency. 
Soon they began to land on the shores of America. The first 
important settlement which they made, was on the Cape Fear 
river, in North Carolina. This settlement proved to be a very 
valuable acquisition to the Presbyterian Church, and ultimately 
to the country. Industry, frugality, intelligence, and conse- 
qently, correct moral deportment, were then, as now, charac- 


teristics of the Scotch. These qualities belonged eminently to 
the Cape Fear settlement. They were strict conscientious 
Presbyterians. They had taken the oath of allegiance to 
their King. It was the condition of their pardon. It will 
not then be thought so wonderfully at variance with the 
standard of morality, if many of these people are found at 
the commencement of the war of the Revolution, to reluct 
at taking arms against the government they had so solemnly 
sworn to support. Nor will it be considered so uniformly 
an offence altogether unpardonable, if they are at first, found 
to raise their voices and their arms in the cause of their 
annointed sovereign. When we censure, with our accustomed 
severity, all those who did not heartily unite, at the out-set, 
with the popular party of ^75, we must remember, that these 
Scotchmen, of all the rest of the world, had the best reason 
to dread the very name of civil war and revolution. Besides, 
the course then adopted, was unquestionably, with many 
of them, the result of an irrepressible feeling of loyalty, as well 
as sense of religious obligation to keep faith with the govern- 
ment, which protected them. Does it become us to stigma- 
tize with opprobrious epithets all those pious and conscientious 
persons clergymen and laymen, who fled the country, or 
who refused to lend their aid to the Revolutionary party in 
our incipient struggle with the mother country ? Is it not 
much more charitable, and abundantly more rational to sup- 
pose, that many of them, our own countrymen as well as 
the Scotch, acted from high moral and religious principle? 

We had a remarkable instance of political defection, very 
near home ; our first minister, the Rev. John Huston, refused 
to subscribe to the " association test." He was the only man 
in the town who did not pledge himself, body and soul, to 
the cause of freedom. Let us, before we utterly condemn 
his course, look for a single moment at the circumstances 
attending his acts. He was alone in his views ; nobody 
sustained him, not a single member of his church or congre- 
gation : look at him when the doors of his church were shut 
upon him, when he was forbidden ever again to ascend to 
the sacred desk ; when the officers arrested him, and required 
bonds for his detention within the limits of the county ; 
when he was spurned by his former friends ; when all the 
insults of an excited and indignant people were cast upon his 
defenceless head, — and then say, in candor, whether he 
probably endured all this, simply because he was an enemy 


to a republican form of government ? or rather, whether he 
was not acting under the belief that he was forbidden, by- 
one whose commands he dared not disobey, to resist and 
levy war upon the " powers that were." Let us be kind, let 
us be charitable ; let us, at least, be just to the memory of 
our long since departed, sincere, but sadly mistaken, spiritual 
guide and minister in holy things. He has gone, as have 
the early settlers on Cape Fear river, and thousands of others, 
who fell into the same error, to their final account. And 
we, who have been made happy in the triumph of liberty — 
in the overthrow of despotism — in the glorious results, 
which have succeeded the efforts which they opposed, after 
all, feebly and ineffectually, can afford to forget and forgive ; 
" Nil mortuis nisi bomim." 

I am strongly tempted, even at the hazard of your reproof, 
for trespassing too long upon your kind indulgence, to intro- 
duce a single Scotch Presbyterian Emigrant, who came here 
as late as '75, and joined her friends in North Carolina — a 
woman, one whose name has adorned the pages of history 
and of romance, and has been rendered immortal by the best 
pen, that ever described Scottish scenery or Scottish char- 
acter — she is none other than Flora MacDonald. 

Go with me, in imagination, to an island called South-Uist 
one of the Hebrides, near the western shore of Scotland. 
There we shall find, hid away in a cavern, by the sea-side, 
the Prince, Charles Edward, just escaped from the hot 
pursuit of the soldiers and spies of the Duke of Cumberland, 
after the disasters of Culloden. He is here, under the care 
of the Laird of Clanranald, though in imminent peril, every 
moment, of falling into the hands of his enemies, who have 
pursued him like blood-hounds, and are now searching the 
island for his hiding-place. Various expedients have been 
devised to effect his safe removal. In the midst of anxious 
deliberation, among his friends, Flora MacDonald, a relative 
of Clanranald, accidentally arrived on a visit. A young lady 
just returned from Edinburgh, where she had been to be 
educated, beautiful, kind-hearted and devotedly attached to 
the cause of Charles. Her father was dead. Her mother, 
who had married a second time, lived on the neighboring 
Isle of Skye, where Flora was born, and where was then 
her home. 

A romantic scheme was now proposed for the deliverance of 
the Pretender. This was, that he should put on the dress of 


an Irish serving-woman, and leave, for the Isle of Skye, in 
the company of a female. Flora was requested to take the 
principal part in this perilous enterprise. Such was her zeal 
for her fallen, though still her "rightfii' lawfu' " Prince and 
heir to the throne, that she consented. With the utmost 
difficulty, the party escaped in the night, in a boat, the Prince 
attired as a female servant, and assuming the name of Betsey 
Burke, with nothing but the feeble arm and woman's wit 
of Flora McDonald, for his protection. They encountered a 
storm of much severity, during the navigation of that fearful 
night. At early dawn the next morning, they attempted to 
land at point Weternish, on Flora's home island. They 
were suspected by some soldiers, who fired upon their little 
bark. They retreated, and soon gained the shore at another 
place, in safety. Here again, in another sea-side cave, this 
young man, the object of so much solicitude, was carefully 
secreted, while Flora hastened to procure food and relief for 
him. By the advice of her friends, as soon as they were 
refreshed, Flora, still accompanied by Charles, in the dress of 
Betsey Burke, made all haste to reach the town of Kingsburg, 
on the opposite side of the Island, a distance of twelve miles, 
which they performed on foot that day. The danger was 
now considered past — the Prince was saved. At parting, he 
kissed his fair guide, and said to her : " Gentle, faithful maid- 
en, I entertain the hope that we shall yet meet in the Royal 
Palace." But they never met again. The poor broken- 
hearted Prince was doomed to die in obscurity. Flora was 
soon after arrested, and with many others who had participated 
with her in this bold and romantic adventure, carried to 
London and imprisoned in the Tower, on a charge of aiding 
and abetting attempts against the life of King George the 
Second. During her imprisonment, many of the English 
nobility became interested in the fate of this high spirited 
and noble hearted girl. Learning that she was a Presbyterian, 
and of course, not a partisan of the Pretender, whose life she 
had saved by her courage and her sagacity, the King was 
prevailed upon to pardon her. She was sent back to her 
native Island, literally loaded with the richest presents. She 
was married four years after her release, to Allen McDonald, 
and continued to reside in the Isle of Skye. She became 
the mother of a numerous family, and in 1775, came to this 
country and settled in North Carolina. The time of her 
arrival here was unfortunate for her — the Revolution had 


but just begun. Her kinsman, Donald MacDonald, who had 
been an officer in the '"45 of her favorite Charles and who 
had taken the oath of allegiance to George the Second, and 
emigrated to save his life, was already a military officer in 
this country, in the King's service, by the appointment of the 
Governor of North Carolina. Flora MacDonald, was therefore 
at once surrounded by such influences, as to induce her to 
lend her aid to the royal party in the Carolinas. Her friends, 
including her husband, who opposed the patriots, were soon 
defeated as disastrously as they had been at Culloden. After 
much suffering, great privations, and pecuniary loss, she, with 
her family, left our shores, for the place, where, thirty years 
before, she had bid farewell to Prince Charles. She had 
hazarded her life, first for the House of Stuart, and then for 
the House of Hanover, and she had the best reasons for 
saying, with the good natured Mercutio, in the play, " A 
plague o' both the houses." She was an exemplary woman, 
in all the relations of life, modest, gentle, and retiring in her 
manners, and Dr. Foote says, " her memory will live in 
North Carolina, while nobleness has admirers, and romantic 
self-devotion to the welfare of the distressed can charm the 
heart," and, adds, " Massachusetts has her Lady Arabella, 
Virginia her Pocahontas, and North Carolina her Flora Mac 

I ought to mention the fact, in this connexion, that in the 
old north state, to this day, the original character, habits, and 
even the language of the Scotch are preserved and contin- 
ued, with less of change, than in any other part of the United 
States. In some of the churches, in the presbytery of Fay- 
etteville, the gospel is still preached in the native tongue of 
the Highlanders, the Gaelic. 

It was in Fayetteville where Flora MacDonald resided for 
some time. Her house, which had become an object of great 
interest to visitors, was unfortunately destroyed a few years 
ago, by fire. 

I cannot forego the pleasure of referring to one other 
Presbyterian heroine, who has been connected with events 
of a much more recent date, and the account of whose 
courage and intrepid conduct I have very lately received from 
her own lips, much more in detail, than I can now repeat it. 
Franklin Chase, our Consul at Tampico, just after the battles 
on the Rio Grande, received peremptory orders to leave the 
town and Mexican Territory, in six hours, and not to disobey, 


upon the peril of his life. The order was in direct violation 
of the treaty, between the two countries ; yet from the 
revengeful character of the people, he knew it would be exe- 
cuted to the letter. He was largely engaged in trade. All 
his property consisted of a house, and a store filled with val- 
uable goods. He prepared, of course, to leave all : but his 
wife, Ann Chase refused to go with him. He entreated and 
commanded her, but to no purpose. At length, tearing him- 
self away, he was enabled to reach an American Sloop of 
War, lying in the offing, just in season to comply with the 
tyrannical order of the Mexican General. Mrs. Chase, was 
now left alone. There was not an American in the place. 
She was surrounded by excited and bitter enemies, a defence- 
less woman. But she did not falter or flinch, or droop in 
despondency. She was equal to the emergency. She soon 
began to make preparations to effect the surrender of the town 
to the Naval forces of the United States, then cruising in the 
Gulf of Mexico. She engaged certain Mexican pilots, to 
give her the exact soundings over the bar, at the mouth of the 
river, on whicii the city stands. With the aid of this informa- 
tion, and an old English chart, she constructed a plan of Tam- 
pico, and its neighborhood. She then contrived to open a cor- 
respondence with the Commodore of the American fleet. She 
was carried herself in an open canoe-, rowed by two Indians, 
twenty miles to sea in the night, to the Commodore's ship. 
She there furnished him with the plan already prepared ; and 
made arrangements to raise a signal in the town, when the pro- 
per time should arrive for a safe landing. She returned, unob- 
served, and unharmed, and immediately set to work to redeem 
her pledge, to the Commodore. One bright morning, soon after, 
to the utter astonishment and dismay of the Mexicans, she was 
seen on the highest point of the roof of her dwelling-house, 
her arm encircling and sustaining a flag-staff, from which 
floated in the breeze, the American stars and stripes. 

In vain the people shouted to her, and theratened her with 
instant death, if she persisted in maintaining her position. 
She replied, in her accustomed calm and collected manner, 
"you can do me but little harm: you can only rob me of a 
few short years of life, by any death you can inflict. I have 
raised this flag of my country over my house, and hereit shall 
remain. I have taken my stand under its folds, and it shall 
be my shroud, if I perish upon this roof.''' And there she 
did remain, until relieved by a detachment of officers and men, 
from the American Squadron, accompanied by her husband. 


The result is well known. The Mexicans became alarmed, 
panic-stricken, and finally fled in all directions. The town 
was completely deserted, before a single boat had landed. 
Mrs. Chase, alone, had put to rout the inhabitants, soldiers and 
all, and was sole mistress of Tampico. 

For this daring and brilliant exploit, she deserved, and has 
received the highest commendations, the praise and the thanks 
of the people of the United States. The city of New Orleans, 
presented to her, a splendid service of plate. The ladies of 
Cincinnati, sent her a beautiful flag. Others, have honored 
her, by forwarding to her, swords, fire-arms, and even pieces 
of artillery, in token of respect, for this deed of heroism. 

It is almost impossible, to disconnect in our own minds, 
such a female, from all that is masculine, ferocious, and pas- 
sionate. Yet, if you should ever have the good fortune to 
meet this lady, you will find her, quiet, modest ; and retiring ; 
intelligent, kind and benevolent ; a pious, devoted Presbyte- 
rian, and just the last person, one would have selected at first 
sight, for the warlike service in which she was involved. 

It is hardly necessary for me to add, that she is descended 
from the same stock, we have considered so much, to day ; 
that she is one of the very best of that people, who are "brave 
as they are gentle, and gentle as they are brave." She is 
Scotch-Irish ; her parents are of Londonderry, on the Foyle, 
and she is related, in no very distant degree, to the noble 
house of the Red Douglas. 

We had, but a few short months since, here, in our midst, 
an eminent and striking example of the high moral and intel- 
lectual qualities, of the Scotch-Irish character, in a female, 
a native of this town. One, whose presence we sadly miss 
now. It is true, she had never endured the horrors of a 
beleagured town, she had saved no fallen prince from an 
untimely death : she had captured no city. No emergency 
ever occurred, connecting her name with any perilous or 
romantic adventure. She was no heroine, in the common 
acceptation of the term. Hers was a life of calm, quiet, 
steady, but earnest devotion, to one great end and purpose ; 
namely : the moral, religious and intellectual culture of the 
youth, of her time. In this cause she labored and toiled, in 
comparative obscurity, to be sure, for the last fifty years. It 
is, perhaps, praise enough to say, that at the time of her 
death, she could undoubtedly have summoned around her, 
more well instructed pupils, than any female of her age, in 
New England. 


There are few natives of Bedford, who came upon the 
stage, since the commencement of the present century, who 
do not remember, with grateful affection, the valuable instruc- 
tion, the kind advice, the pious and excellent precepts and 
example, of Ann Orr. Who of us, does not feel to-day, 
that we should experience an additional thrill of pleasure, if 
we were able once more, to cluster around our kind-hearted, 
strong-minded, and sensible old school-mistress, take her 
by the hand, and ask of her the continuance of the appro- 
bation and the blessings which she bestowed upon us, when 
we were her " boys." 

But this cannot be. She, too, has left us. She sleeps on 
yonder rising ground, never to awake, until all are summoned 
— the teacher and the taught — the master and the pupil — 
the learned and the ignorant — the wise and the foolish, to 
render a final account to the great Judge, whose name she told 
us to reverence, and whose example she prayed we might 

Presbyterianism, that is, the government of the church by 
elders, and the utter negation of all prelatical power, in eccle- 
siastical affairs, dates very far back. It was found, according 
to Dr. Miller, among the simple-minded Paulicians, in the 
seventh century. It was the church government of the 
Albigenses, and of the Waldenses, including the Bohemian 
Brothers. It can be traced even to the synagogues of the 
Jews, before the Saviour's advent. It has been sustained by 
the most eminent believers in Christendom. By Luther and 
Melancthon and Bucaer, in Germany. By Favel, Calvin, and 
others, in France and Geneva. By Zuingle, in Switzerland. 
By Peter Martyr, in Italy. By A. Lasco, in Hungary By 
Junius, and others, in Holland, and by a decided majority of 
the enlightened and pious friends of the Reformation, in 

Here, it is comparatively modern and new. We derive it 
from Scotland, its " homestead," in Great Britain, and princi- 
pally, through the Scotch-Irish of Ulster ; although we are 
largely indebted to the Scotch, the Huguenots and the 
Hollanders, for many professors. 

We must not forget, that it first began on this Continent, 
with Francis Mackemie, only one hundred and fifty years ago, 
on a narrow strip of land, between the Chesapeake and Dela- 
ware — that, then, hardly venturing to show its face in the 


light of day, it was seen begging of the Cavaliers of Virginia 
for a license to assert its doctrines ; that it was punished by 
imprisonment in New York, and spurned by the Church of 
England, as "a religion not fit for a gentleman." 

The Separatists, Independents, or Congregationalists, as 
they are now everywhere known, had occupied all the ground 
in New England, long before Presbyterianism made its appear- 
ance. Carver, Bradford, and Standish came one hundred 
years before MacGregore, Corn well, and Boyd. The " Speed- 
well" had, indeed, been driven back by the tempests of 
the ocean, like the " Eagle-Wing ; " but the " May-Flower," 
had weathered the storms, and brought with her, to our own 
shores, the representatives of one great division of the puri- 
tans of Great Britain. These men, the "Pilgrim Fathers," 
had established a Spiritual democracy, under the name of 
Congregationalism, a system of church government, which 
originated here, and with them, and which so well accorded 
with the prevailing sentiment of the times, that it was almost 
universally accepted in the New England Colonies. Repub- 
lican Presbyterianism, had, therefore, to seek another field 
for her labor. That field she found in the vast territory of 
the Middle, Southern, and ultimately, of the Western 
and South-western States. The progress and relative condi- 
tion of the two systems, may be learned, very readily, by 
consulting the religious statistics of the country. In 1843, 
there were in the United States, 35S4 Presbyterian churches, 
only 11 of them being in New England, and nine of that 
eleven, in New Hampshire, the other two, in Massachusetts. 
There were 2672 ordained ministers, and probably, 900 licen- 
tiates and candidates; and 279,782 communicants. There 
were, at the same time, stated upon the same authority, not 
far from 1500 Congregational churches ; the Presbyterians 
exceeding them, by two thousand and eighty-four. Of these 
fifteen hundred churches, more than one thousand were in 
New England. The number of Congregational ministers was 
about 1350, against 3572 ministers and licentiates, of the 
Presbyterian church, the balance, in favor of the latter, being 
2222. The Congregational communicants are stated at 180, 
000, being nearly, 100,000 less than those of the Presbyteri- 
ans, at the same time. This estimate of the Congregational 
churches and ministers, does not include those, which have 
rejected, what are called, the doctrines of the Reformation, 
better known as Unitarian. The churches of this last descrip- 


tion, are nearly all confined to Massachusetts, where Con- 
gregationalism first began. I believe there is no instance 
where a Presbyterian church has directly and openly adopted 
the faith and forms of Unitarianism. The Federal Street 
Church, in Boston, which was the second Presbyterian church 
ever organized in New England, and which was successively 
under the pastoral care of Morehead and Annin, two zealous 
disciples of Knox and Calvin, might seem to be an exception. 
But the members of that church voted to change, and did 
change, the form of its government to that of Congregation- 
alism, before it became Unitarian. 

In view of the very imperfect, brief, and hasty sketch of 
the origin, progress, character and success of Presbyterianism 
in New England, and throughout the United States, which 
has been attempted to-day : who is prepared to estimate the 
value of the labors, the sacrifices, and the sufferings of its 
early founders ? Who does not perceive and acknowledge 
the vast importance of the mission of the Scotch-Irish to 
our shores ? Failing, in their first attempt to reach us, from 
physical causes, altogether above and beyond their control, 
they hastened back upon that " Eagle-Wing."' which proved 
too frail to sustain them in the wider trans-atlantic flight, which 
they meditated, not to repair and refit for a second voyage, the 
feeble craft in which they had hazarded their lives; but to 
fit and prepare themselves, their countrymen and their poster- 
ity for the great work ; which although postponed for a time, 
they foresaw, must sooner or later devolve upon them. That 
work was to raise the standard of their religion in the vast 
wilderness of America. Hither, in God's own time, they 
came, bringing with them, what was better than silver and 
gold, their habits of untiring industry, of frugality, and strict 
economy : bringing with them, that unconquerable energy of 
character, which overcomes all opposition ; bringing with them, 
minds enlightened and enriched by the best learning of the 
age, and a religious profession and a faith drawn from the 
bible, and tested by the sufferings and the martyrdom of 
thousands of its converts. With such habits, and with such 
moral and religious principles, they could not fail of success. 

But the length to which these remarks have extended, 
admonishes me that it is time to dismiss the subject, and to take 
my leave. Still, I would linger at the parting, hesitate 
upon the farewell. Standing, as I do, in the midst of the 
friends of my youth, my school-mates, and the playmates of 


my childhood, each face, and each familiar name associated 
with some of the dearest recollections of my life ; I wOuld, 
before we part, gladly recount, with you, some of the events, 
and revive some of the scenes, with which we were so familiar, 
in our earlier, younger and brighter days. I would run with 
you again over the green fields to cull the wild flowers, or, 
stray away into the pastures, to gather the mountain-laurel, 
which blooms upon our native land, as it blooms no where 
else. I would ascend the highest hill, for a broader gaze 
upon the bright horizon which encircles us. I would plunge 
into the forest, or loiter along the meadow-brook, or I would 
launch, with you, the light boat, for a sail upon the clear 
bosom of the ever-flowing Merrimack. Or, we could go 
back, if we would, in imagination, to our childish gambols. 
We could join in the sportive mirth of a thanksgiving eve- 
ning, or rejoice in the holy-day pastimes of the General 
Election and the Fourth of July. We might revisit the old 
school-house, and once more con over those, sometimes irk- 
some, but always most important tasks of elemental learning, 
which have so often puzzled and perplexed us. 

Would we not, if we had the time, recall some of the scenes 
of the severe daily toil of our fathers ? We might drive 
"the team afield" again; and even put our hands to the 
plough once more. It would do us no harm. It was the 
honest and healthful employment, by which, they, who 
brought us into life, earned their and our daily bread. Or, in 
the stillness of the sacred Sabbath morning, we might assemble 
at the old meeting-house, and listen to him, who was com- 
missioned to bear the message of peace to the upright in 
heart, and denounce with fearful indignation the unrighteous 
and the dissolute. 

We would recross the threshold of the dear old cottage, 
where first the light of Heaven was revealed to our wonder- 
ing eyes, — where we were nurtured and sustained by the 
fondness of a father, and where every wish was anticipated, 
and every want supplied from that over-flowing fountain of 
kindness — -a mother's love — which never fails, but with 
the latest pulsation, and the last breath of her with whom it 
dwells. And would we not, sad and sorrowful as might be 
the duty, repair, once again, to that hallowed spot of earth, 
" where heaves the turf, in many a mouldering heap," the 
common burial ground of our kindred and our friends ; and, 
kneeling solemnly and prayerfully, around the grave of a 


venerated father, or bending, in unabated grief, over the 
ashes of a sainted mother, should we not find consolation 
in the belief, that their spirits, though released from the body, 
still lingered around, to hold communion with our own, — 
that they may still be the unseen guardian angels, to shield 
and protect us, in all our trials and temptations, while we 
live, and to beckon us on to a happy immortality. 

But I am unwilling to ask your further forbearance ; and I 
will only beg leave, in conclusion, using the language of an 
eminent English poet, to repeat a sentiment, to which I am 
certain all hearts will respond, with the most cheerful alacrity. 

" There is a land, of every land the pride, 

Beloved by Heaven, o'er all the world beside ; 

There is a spot of earth supremely blest, 

A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest. 

Here woman reigns : the mother, daughter, wife, 

Strews with fresh flowers, the narrow way of life : 

Around her knees domestic duties meet, 

And fire-side pleasures gambol at her feet. 

Where shall that land, that spot of earth, be found ? 

Art thou a man ? a patriot ? look around ! 

Oh, thou shalt find, howe 'er thy footsteps roam, 

That land thy country, and that spot, thy home." 



The Exercises having been performed, according to the 
order, a short recess took place, after which, the large assem- 
bly partook of the Collation prepared, — a blessing having 
been first implored, by Rev. Isaac Willey, of Goffstown. 
The duties of the table being concluded, the President 
of the day, introduced the free and social services of the 
afternoon, with some suitable remarks. In this short 
preliminary address, he gave some brief sketches of the prin- 
cipal pioneers of Bedford, such as Walker, Patten, Coffe and 
others ; and the foremost of her sons, who entered the Revolu- 
tionary army immediately upon hearing of the battle of 
Concord, as did John Orr, and others. As there will be 
brief biographical notices of individuals, embodied in the 
following history, it will be unnecessary here to anticipate 
this part of the volume : only one or two interesting allusions 
by the President, will be given. 

Having spoken of one of the first settlers, Mr. Robert 
Walker, he said : "I introduce to you his only surviving son, 
Robert Walker, now in the 89th year of his age. He says 
he has nothing to present to you but his gray hairs. I will 
endeavor to speak a word for him. In the Revolutionary 
War, the tories of New Boston were contemplating burning 
Washington and his contemporaries in effigy, calling it burn- 
ing the Pope. The Whigs of the same place were determined 
to oppose them, and they sent down to good old Bedford for 
some smart active men to come and help them — and this is 
one of the lads that went." * 

Alluding to the late Miss Ann Orr, he said : " At our first meet- 
ing to make appointments for the Centennial, she was with us, 
and had the second appointment made, that to get the histo- 
ry of the Orr family. This she accomplished in good style. 
She had a desire to see this occasion. She was the mother 
of teachers in this vicinity. It is rare to find the person who 
was born and educated in Bedford for the last half century, 
but that has been under her instruction more or less." 

* Names of the individuals who went to New-Boston, — Capt. Thomas 
McLaughlin, Zaccheus Chandler, John Patten, James Walker, Robert Walker, 
Griggs Goffe, Joseph Goffe, James Grier, William Moor, Nathaniel Martin 
and Josiah Gordon. 


The President also spoke of the Hon. John Orr, one of 
the worthies of Bedford. " He was, for many years, an 
elder of the Church ; Justice of the Peace, and of the 
Quorum ; Senator of the third District ; Councillor of 
Hillsborough county, and many years a Representative 
from Bedford. His parents died when he was very young. 
I will give you his character, by relating an anecdote 
he related to the Sabbath school at its first formation 
in May, 1818. He says, 'I was bound out to Dea. Robert 
Walker, a farmer, until I should become twenty-one years 
of age. I thought my master and my mistress were too 
severe. After working hard all day I had to go after the 
cows. The cows went where they pleased. One had a bell 
on, which was of great service to me. On one occasion I 
was treed by a bear, up in the woods back of the school- 
house we are in, and I should have had to stay all night, 
very likely, had not a girl (Rebecca Henderson) run home 
and informed Mr. Walker, who came and relieved me. 
But the worst thing, and for what I disliked them the most, 
was, they made me get verses in the Bible and repeat them to 
them. This I did not like, and I thought I would not stay, 
but would run off. One afternoon I started and ran some 
time until I was tired. I then sat down on a log and began 
to think what I should say when I should get where I was 
going. They would not believe me. They knew Dea. 
Walker was a good man. I began to think about the Bible 
I had studied, and this is the text of Scripture that came into 
my mind, "servants be obedient to your masters," not only 
to the good and gentle, but to the froward. I knew the Bible 
said right. I was ashamed of my conduct. I got up from 
off the log, turned my steps home, and worked out my time. 
I think Dea. Walker was just the man I ought to have had. 
I think if anything ever did me any good it was studying 
the word of God. I believed it then, and I believe it now.' " 

" Col. John Goffe was a man of some consequence in his 
day. He was the only son of John Goffe, Esq., who was 
the son of John Goffe, of Boston ; and probably a grandson 
of Major General Wm. Goffe, who left England in 1660 — 
one of the Judges who condemned King Charles I. Col. 
John, settled at the mouth of Cohas Brook, the outlet of 
Massabissic pond, at the Merrimack river, about three miles 
below Manchester city. His occupation in early life, was 
hunting, which was the most delightful and profitable. He 
is named Hunter John in some of the old deeds. He was 


frequently in the French war, in 1756. He directed a 
letter to Gov. B. Wentworth, showing the necessity of send- 
ing more troops about the frontier, where he then was, doing 
military duty on the Contocook and Penacook. He was the 
Representative of the town of Bedford and Amherst, and 
while in that capacity at Portsmouth, in 1777, he directed a 
most thrilling letter to his son John, the Major." 
[The letter was then read.] 

The President then announced the first regular toast : — 

19th of May, 1750. — Ever to be remembered by the descendants of 
Bedford — the Petitioners on that day received a charter of Incorporation, 
whereby they could support their religion, which was that, and that only, they 
petitioned for. 

Responded to by Hon. Horace Greely, of New York 

" Although, Mr. President, I had no intimation till an hour 
ago that I should be expected to speak on this occasion, and 
certainly could not have expected to speak to the sentiment 
we have just listened to, yet I gladly avail myself of your 
invitation. And although I feel that the entire subject which 
engages our thoughts this day, has been fully discussed and 
well nigh exhausted by our Orator, while the topic suggested 
by this sentiment has received the amplest justice at his hands, 
I shall not fear that my words, though they seem but a feeble 
repetition of his, will fall on impatient or unwilling ears. 
You need not be told that the century which has elapsed 
since this town was first settled has been crowded with 
astonishing and memorable events ; that the event which we 
are here met to commemorate, carries us back to the days 
of Franklin's mechanical thrift and Washington's boyhood — 
that in 1750 this fair land of ours was, all but a thin belt on 
its Atlantic border, a vast, unbroken wilderness, the haunt of 
savage beasts and savage men ; that men now live, in whose 
childhood the woodman plied his axe and the ploughman 
turned his furrow on the soil of this town in iminent peril 
of the Indian's deadly rifle-shot ; and that the mother and 

* Horace Greely was born just over the line of Bedford, in Amherst, the 
school he attended, and the better portion of his father's farm being in Bed- 
ford, where he resided during a portion of his early years. 


her babes in the primitive homes of Bedford, trembled with 
no unfounded terror, when the night-fall brought not back to 
them, the husband and father, who had left them in the 
morning to pursue his daily avocation. Nor need I speak to 
you of the birth, ihe growth, the maturity, during the century 
whose close we celebrate, of those great principles of Civil 
and Religious Freedom, for lack of Avhich, the world had 
suffered and sorrowed through so many years. The Ameri- 
can and the French Revolutions, so unlike in their features 
and results, are the two great political events of the past 
century; each shedding a bright though a peculiar radiance on 
the great truths respecting the rights of Opinion — of a voice 
in the election of Rulers and the enactment of laws : of the 
sanctions and limitations of Power, and of the absolute 
Freedom of Worship, which constitute the fundamental, 
inalienable Rights of Man. " The Rights of Man ! ' a 
phrase now familiar as household words, but sounding 
strangely in the ears of the People, the toiling masses, of a 
single century ago. But now those words have a power 
unbounded by the actual enjoyment of Free Institutions. 
At their sound, the thrones of despotism totter at Vienna, 
and reel in Paris ; even the dreary ice-palaces of Russia, 
begin to confess its power. No one can reasonably doubt 
that the last century has accomplished more than all its prede- 
cessors for the establishment of the great vivifying principle 
that Civil and Religious Freedom is the inalienable Right of 
all Mankind. 

So, too, in Physical Science. The Steam-Engine, the 
Steamboat, the Steamship, the Locomotive, the Railway, the 
Electric-Telegraph, are a few among the achievements of the 
century beginning with 1750. And how completely have 
they transformed, or are destined to transform, the whole 
Industrial and Social condition of Man ! A century ago, the 
journey hence to New York would have required a fortnight, 
and have subjected the adventurous traveller to great discom- 
fort and peril. But I did a day's work yesterday in New 
York, and must do another in that city before closing my eyes 
to-morrow ; such are the wondrous facilities of modern travel. 
That the Telegraph has annihilated space is no metaphor, 
when a message sent from Halifax at noon of to-day, may 
have reached St. Louis two hours before noon of this same 
day. The time is rapidly approaching when a vote taken in 
Congress at dark will be announced in that day's evening 


papers at San Francisco, some hours earlier (by the sun or the 
clock,) than it will appear to have occurred. Measured by 
events rather than almanacs, it is long enough since those few 
pioneers from Londonderry bravely ventured across the 
Merrimack and began to let day-light into the woods of what 
is now Bedford. 

" The founding of New-England, the history of New-Eng- 
and, the people of New-England, and especially the Puritan 
and Presbyterian ancestry of New-England, have properly 
been the theme of your Orator. I will not trespass on a field 
so well trodden before me, even though plainly invited by the 
sentiment you have asked me to respond to. Yet I may with 
just pride, as a son of New-England, bear testimony to the 
character she has imprinted on her children who have migra- 
ted to other regions — who, impelled by her rugged soil and 
crowded homes, have wandered away in pursuit of fame, or 
fortune, or larger scope for usefulness, or opportunity to sow 
and reap in thankfulness the harvest of humble but contented 
toil. I have found them on the shores of Lake Superior and 
on the great rivers of the West. I have met them as repre- 
sentatives of the furtherest West and South in the Grand 
Council of the Nation. Go where you will on this Conti- 
nent, and if you find Activity and Thrift, be sure there are 
sons of New-England not far from you, and that they are not 
idle or inefficient. Visit the whaler in the Pacific, the packet- 
ship at Canton, the mining " gulch" in California, or the lead 
" diggings" of the Upper Mississippi, and you will find sons 
of New-England in all, and wherever they constitute half 
the population, you may safely assume that it is not in posi- 
tion the lower half. If they dig few Canals or grade few 
Rail-Roads, they yet cause many to be dug and graded, and 
show how the desired result may be surely attained with the 
smallest expenditure of labor. And although all communities 
have their unworthy members, of whom a part will find a 
change of residence advisable, and although jealousy and 
conscious inferiority in intelligence, industry or morality, 
have excited in many quarters a hostility to the " Yankees," 
which tries to hide its envious impulses beneath a mantle of 
contempt, yet I venture to say, that there is no part of the 
Western world, where the Puritan race is known, in which 
the assurance, " I am descended from the first Colonists of 
New-England," is not a passport to confidence and considera- 
tion. So may it be to the end of Time ! 


" What nobler testimony than this could I bear to the faith of 
New-England — so distinguished by reverence for God and 
independence of the power of Man ? What could I say for 
that Faith which her innumerable churches and school- 
houses ; her teachers, missionaries and martyrs, will not have 
said before me ? The Common Schools of our vast country, 
so rapidly increasing, are grafts from hardy Puritan stock. 
The graduates of these thickly clustered school-houses, are 
teaching throughout the continent. The Rock of Plymouth 
is not merely the corner-stone of our gigantic edifice of Civil 
and Religious Freedom ; from it, as from the rock smitten by 
the Divine Lawgiver of old, gush the streams which still 
gladden and vivify the Liberties of the world. The marriage 
of Order to Liberty — of Loyalty to Freedom — had its ear- 
liest exemplifications on the soil of New-England, and her 
Town-Meetings are to this day the most orderly and striking 
examples of practical Democracy in the World. Who does 
not see that the independent congregation, choosing its own 
Pastor and settling its own Creed, is the block whereon the 
Township has been molded — that it is to the existence of 
" a Church without a Bishop " that we are indebted for " a 
State without a King ?" Whatever the faults of the primi- 
tive Faith of New-England, I have never heard it accused of 
quenching the innate aspiration for Liberty nor of paralyzing 
the arm raised in resistance to despotism and tyranny. And 
in an age so pervaded and electrified by the spirit of Change 
— an age of Movement, Progress, Revolution — of change 
from which creeds and theologies are not exempted — let us 
rejoice in the assurance that the God of our Fathers still rules 
over the Universe, and that Faith in His being, His goodness, 
His wisdom, His omnipotence, is not and cannot be supplant- 
ed nor superseded by any device of man — that Error is 
transient and Truth immutable — that the more signally Man 
triumphs over brute Nature, the nearer he is brought face to 
face with the Uncreated Cause ; and that when Continents 
shall have been girdled and Rivers enslaved by the genius of 
Man, he must still bow in humble reverence at the footstool 
of his Creator, and recognize that no elevation above the lower 
beings, can lessen the infinite distance which separates him 
from the Great Father of All, nor limit his absolute depend- 
ence on God. And so, as Knowledge shall increase, and 
Science extend her dominion, and Intellect multiply her 
triumphs, our race shall more and more recognize its help- 


lessness in the hands of Omnipotence, and turn to the Faith 
of our Fathers for guidance and solace through life, and 
assurance in death of a radiant and blissful immortality." 

The President then announced the second regular toast — 

1 9th May, 1850. — Thanks to God, our religious institutions are still 
with us, and we most earnestly pray they may be the first, and above all 
other things, supported by us and our posterity. 

Responded to by Rev. Mr. Davis, of Amherst. 

" I respond with pleasure, " he said, " to a sentiment, which 
so expresses the real desire of my heart, and the more so, 
because I may be regarded, as representing another denomi- 
nation. I have always rejoiced in the delightful harmony 
subsisting between the Presbyterian and Congregational 
Churches of New Hampshire. We have heard much to-day 
of the trials and privations of the early Scotch settlers in this 
country. In the history of their conflicts, we had a repeti- 
tion of the same adherence to religious convictions, — the 
same faith in God, and in God's word, — which so marked 
the planting of the Puritan Churches. I have listened with 
delight to the eloquent remarks of the gentleman who 
has preceded me, but I wish to hold up more distinctly, the 
great thought, that the movement which resulted in the set- 
tlement of these Presbyterian townships, was a religious 
movement. The persons engaged in it possessed a living 
faith in God's word, and their desire and prayer was, that 
their children might enjoy the same blessing. For this 
reason they prized the Catechism, the Sabbath and an educa- 
ted ministry; and they placed little reliance on any other 
means of religious training. Herein is the secret of the 
virtues of their descendants. 

" The generations that grew up under their tuition were well 
instructed in the doctrines of the Bible. I cannot properly 
illustrate the value of their example in each of the particulars 
now suggested, without encroaching on the time which may 
be better occupied by others. As much has been said of 
Scotland and the Kirk, I may be permitted to add, that we 
are not only indebted for the use, but somewhat, also, for the 
excellence of the Catechism, to Presbyterians. The Cate- 
chism, as you know, was made in England, yet the Scotch 
had a hand in it, as one anecdote will show. It appears 


that in the composition of the Catechism, the Westminster 
Divines, first agreed npon a list of questions, to which answers 
were to he furnished afterward. Having agreed upon the 
questions, the framing of the answers went on quite smooth- 
ly, until they came to the fourth, " What is God? " numbers 
proposed replies, or amendments to the replies, but every 
attempt to describe or define the author and the object of 
worship, failed to satisfy the assembly ; they were evidently 
brought to a stand in their labors, when one of the Scotch 
Commissioners, Alexander Henderson, "Clarum et venerabile 
nomen," modestly rose, and read that incomparable defini- 
tion, beginning, " God is a Spirit, " &c, which was unani- 
mously adopted, as the answer of the question. Henderson 
and his associates made other contributions to this work, 
which had done so much to impart precision and spirituality 
to our conceptions of God and the doctrines of religion. 

" In regard to the estimation in which these Presbyterian 
Churches have held the ministry. I am constrained to say, 
that their example has furnished a constant reproof to the 
innovations and changes which so extensively prevail in 
other congregations. 

"Permenence in the ministry is an element of strength. Tn 
its influence on the community, it is closely allied to rever- 
ence and those order-loving virtues — contentment, persever- 
ance, and the thrift of Godliness — which make a happy 
and united population. Most of our Churches are taking 
sorrowful lessons in another direction. A few days since 
the speaker entered on the seventh year of his ministry. 
With the recurrence of the anniversary of my settlement, 
my thoughts naturally turned back to the fathers and breth- 
ren, who inducted me into the sacred office. Of the ten 
settled pastors of this immediate vicinity, then present, one 
only continues in the same field of labor, that one is this 
brother before me, so esteemed and beloved as your pastor. 
In commendation of the better usage of the Presbyterian 
Churches, I conclude with an invocation of continued 
spiritual blessings on the Pastors who keep their flocks, and 
the flocks that keep their pastors." 

Several songs were prepared, by natives of Bedford, to be 
sung at the table, but were omitted for want of time. As 
they are not discreditable to the Bedford muse, they are 
inserted. The following is one of them. — 



Here we meet, a gath'ring number, 

Hovering round the festive board ; 
Near to where our fathers slumber, 

Ever to be long rever'd. 
Youth's elastic step is bounding, 

Hoary age is moving slow ; 
While hills and dales and all surrounding, 

Speak one hundred years ago. 

The wild fiow'r blossom'd on the mountain, 

Snuff'd its fragrance in the breeze ; 
While below, the gushing fountain 

Murmured 'neath the forest trees. 
Nought was seen but flowery wild wood, 

When the stormy winds did blow ; 
These our fathers in their childhood, 

Saw one hundred years ago. 

But how changed the situation, 

Since the lapse of many years ; 
Forests faltering, lose their station, 

Sink, and verdant fields appear. 
Now the white man scales the mountains, 

Wandering ever to and fro; 
By the red man's lakes and fountains, 

His, one hundred years ago. 

See the high and cloud cap'd steeple 

Mutely stand and gaze around — 
See the enterprising people, 

Listening to the gospel's sound. 
All ; — but bids us think who gave it — 

Who such seed did early sow ; 
Calling upon us to save it, 

Sown, one hundred years ago. 

To our fathers, who did sever 

This, our home, from forests wild ; 
Be our grateful thanks forever, 

On their monumental pile. 
Let us ne'er forget their trials, 

As they stemm'd the tide of woe ; 
Glorying, in the hand that brought them 

Here, one hundred years ago. 

The President then announced the third regular toast — 

Our Parents. — Long, long left us, gone to reap their reward of glory 
— with gratitude we remember them ; may we ever practise theii virtues, and 
teach them to our children by precept and example. 

Responded to by Rev. Mr. Clark, of Manchester. 


" Mr. President. — Were an apology admissible on an occa- 
sion like the present, I should certainly offer one and instantly 
retire. I sincerely regret that the sentiment to which I am 
called upon to respond, was not put into the hand of a son 
of New Hampshire ; I am her son only by adoption. And 
yet, I natter myself, I am by no means a stranger to such 
feelings as are yours to day. It is my proudest boast, that I 
am descended from a New England ancestry; yes, Sir: — 
that the blood of the man who stood by the side of Miles 
Standish, on board the Pilgrim Ship, (I refer to the mate 
of the ship,) flows through my veins : I trust I shall be 
pardoned for so boasting while moved by such associations as 

" The sentiment just proposed, Mr. President, reminds me 
of the debt of gratitude we owe our ancestors ; and the 
obligation we are under to emulate their virtues, we and 
those who may come after us ; and who, Sir, of all this assem- 
bly, does not respond to that ? Who has not felt his heart 
beating with pride as he has listened to the eloquent portrai- 
tures of our ancestors, by the gentlemen on my right ? And 
who is not impressed with a deeper and more abiding sense 
of obligation, in the regard suggested, by the sentiment I 
have the honor to propose ? If any, let him think of the 
privileges — civil, religious, literary — he enjoys as the result 
of the labors of those ancestors. Let him remember their 
steady perseverence amid difficulties, which would have 
disheartened common men, — let him remember their calm 
endurance, patient resignation, and triumphant faith ; virtues 
which were never before more beautifully illustrated. Let 
him call to mind, that such a band of adventurers, so heroic 
and high-minded, were landed upon no other shore. But, 
Mr. President, I must not anticipate what remains to be said 
by other gentlemen near me. I can only express the con- 
viction from what I have seen and heard to-day, that if the 
forms of those noble fathers and mothers are not here, much 
of their spirit remains. Believe me, Sir, — that although 
their dust mingles with the clod of the valley, — their 
influence lives — 

• The Pilgrim Spirit has not fled, 

It walks in noon's bright light — 
And it watches the bed of the glorious dead 

With the holy stars by night — 
And it watches the bed of the brave who have bled, 

And shall guard this ice-bound shore, 
Till the waves of the Bay, where the May-Flower lay, 

Shall foam and freeze no more.' 


Be it ours to cherish them in grateful remembrance, to 
copy their virtues, and emulate their example, that we may at 
last reap a like reward of Glory with them." 

The President then announced the fourth regular toast — 

The Emigrants, and Guests of Bedford. — We greet you welcome to 
our town, and our festive board. Pleasant and profitable to meet as relations, 
friends, and acquaintances, — it is the first time and the last, we shall ever 
meet on such an occasion, in Bedford. 

John Atwood, Esq., of Albany, New York, responded, 
and closed with a complimentary remark to his old neighbors 
of Bedford, which called out Rev. Mr. Savage. 

Mr. Savage, addressed a few remarks to those represented 
by the gentleman who had just spoken — natives of Bed- 
ford — who after a long absence, had come up to this Centen- 
nial Festival. " They had not forgotten old Bedford. They 
revisited the scenes of their childhood. 

• They all had run about these braes, 

And sat beneath this vine — 
And blessings on the golden days 

Of auld langsyne.' 

But great changes have taken place. The mountains, the hills, 
the vallies, were the same. But where were the men of 
other days ?" The speaker alluded to the fact, that he had 
known their fathers. Many of them were living, when he 
first came to preach in the town. He spoke of the venerable 
members of the Session, long since gone. He spoke of the 
length of his ministry in Bedford, about twenty-five years, 
and of himself, as only the third settled minister since the 
foundation of the Church — a hundred years ago — a circum- 
stance creditable to the people, to say nothing of the pastors. 
There was an interval of thirty years between Mr. Houston 
and Mr. McGregor. He said, " the more he had been led to 
investigate the history of Bedford, the more he was impressed 
with the idea, that he had been laboring among a people that 
were nobly descended. The two Pattens, Matthew and 
Samuel; the two Walkers, James and Robert, Col. Goffe, 
and others, who settled the town, lived long enough, to put 
their names to the association test, [it was here read,] which, 
at the commencement of the Revolution, was circulated 


through the Provinces for signers ; thus enjoying the double 
privilege, of being pioneers in the settlement of the country, 
and also of giving their influence to establish its inde- 

He begged leave to be somewhat personal, and to speak of 
himself, or rather of his ancestry, in connexion with Bedford. 
He had found in the historical researches he had been obliged 
to make, facts that very much deepened the interest he felt 
in the place where he had so long labored. The town was 
one of those granted for services in the Narragansett, or King 
Philip's War. His first American ancestor, Major Thomas 
Savage, commanded the Massachusetts forces, in that war. 
He found the name of his son, as one of the grantees on the 
Proprietors Records and of his grandson, Habijah Savage, on 
the Town Records, among the non-resident tax-payers, as 
late as 1T60 or '70. He concluded with commending the 
friends, who had united with us on this occasion, to the favor 
of God, and with the hope that all might be prepared to meet 
in " the city, which hath foundations, whose builder and 
maker is God." 

The President then announced the fifth regular toast — 

The changes of one hundred years ; — The woolen and linen wheels, — for 
the Cotton Mills and spinning jennies, — are not more wonderful than the horse's 
two days journey to Boston, with wooden panniers, with a tub of butter on 
either side, or both, filled with linen cloth and thread, to the Steam Engine, 
and the telegraph wires. 

The President, to show the result of the changes, related 
an anecdote of Hon. Matthew Patten — first Judge of Probate 
of Hillsborough County under the Constitution, Represen- 
tative to the General Court in Nov. 27th, 1756, — going to 
Londonderry to know when the General Court would set. 
On the 30th, he set out for Portsmouth, went as far as Alex- 
ander McMurphy's, in Londonderry, and received the account 
that the General Court had adjourned till Tuesday, the 14th 
of December, next. 

To exhibit the contrast, between the past and the present, 
more strikingly ; the President, said, he had a note, received 
that morning from Washington City, it was a Telegraphic 
communication from his brother, Judge Woodbury. The 
following, is a copy of the despatch, which the President 



Washington, D. C. May 22d, 1850. > 
9 o'clock, A. M. 5 

P. P. Woodbury, Esq., 

Dear Sir : — We have no news here this morning, 
except fair weather, warm disputes about the Galphin claim, 
and wrangling over the Compromise report. The Supreme 
Court, expects to adjourn the first of June. 

Truly yours, 

Levi Woodbury. 

To the fifth sentiment, Rev. C. W. Wallace, responded 
as follows : — 

' " Mr. President, — I wish to express my gratitude to you, 
for calling upon me to respond to this sentiment. Ministers 
are sometimes accused of wandering from the text. With 
the theme before me, I shall be exposed to no such liability. 
The field is so broad, I can scarcely pass beyond it. A 
century ! What changes, how many, how great, have trans- 
pired within the period of its passing years. One hundred 
years ago, and had we assembled on this spot, how unlike 
the present had been the prospect around us ! These hill- 
sides, now clad in all the freshness of spring, and giving such 
promise of reward to the toil of the husbandman, were then 
covered with the primeval forest. There, roamed the wild bear 
and bounded the timid deer, and fresh behind him, was the 
trail of the Indian, as he retreated before the march of civili- 
zation. Then, highways were mere bridle-paths. The timber 
of yonder Sanctuary, now forsaken, because of its age, was 
then growing in the forest, and the multitudes who have 
since worshipped God within its walls, were then mostly 

" From this spot, where we are now assembled, the trees had 
been then probably removed, a few patches and narrow fields 
had been reclaimed. All the rest, these hills, these vallies, 
now fresh in the promise of a speedy harvest, all was then an 
unbroken wilderness. How changed ! If we cast our eyes 
over a wider circuit, we behold changes, greater far, and 
vastly more important than these. Our admirable system 
of Common Schools, though established by our Puritan Fath- 
ers, when they first landed on these shores, have really gone 
into practical operation in most parts of the country, within 
the last one hundred years. Owing to the sparseness and 


paucity of the population, the means of education were 
exceedingly limited, at the time of which we speak. The 
district school-house, with its session of a few weeks in the 
year, stood at an inconvenient distance from many of the 
people. The Academy was a rare curiosity, standing in some 
remote village, resorted to by a few only of the hardy sons 
and ruddy daughters of that day ; while the college withheld 
its more than golden blessings from all except a very limited 
number of the sons of wealth. Now, how changed. The 
School-house stands beside every Church, and at every cross- 
road. The High-school is found in every village, and the 
Collage opens its treasures to all who have energy to dig in 
its hidden mines. A hundred years has witnessed an amazing 
advance in the mechanic arts. Then, the plough was a rude 
machine, furnished at a greater cost, and worked by double 
the strength required for the same purpose, at the present day. 
Then, the strength of woman's foot turned the wheel, the 
skill of her fingers the thread, and the power of her arm 
drove the shuttle ; now, the river is turned from its bed, and 
made to spin and weave in making its passage to the sea. 
Then, upon the saddle and pillion, our grandfathers and 
grandmothers jogged lovingly along; but all these have 
passed away, and the chaise, and coach, and cushioned rail- 
car, have taken their place. The mechanic, what has he 
not done ? He has made fire and water, and the winds of 
Heaven, perform the work of man. He has levelled moun- 
tains, and leaped rivers. The old world he has laid along side 
the new, and the Heathen nations he has brought to our 
doors. He is the pen of a ready writer to the Author and 
Historian — and the gift of tongues to the Missionary 
of the cross." 

After glancing at the progress of philanthropy, and advert- 
ing to the subject of war, slavery, benevolent and religious 
institutions, and civil government ; the speaker alluded to 
some changes that were not improvements, and proceeded to 
speak of the physical deterioration observable at the present 
day. In this respect, he said : — " The women of the present 
day are feeble representatives of the past, and each genera- 
tion seems to become weaker. I have been told, that my 
grandmother, of precious memory, — and well do I remember 
her, when at the age of three score and ten, she moved 
with a firm step through the house, the windows shaking 
at the tread of her foot, — I have been told, that when at the 




age of eighteen or twenty, she would take a load of linen 
thread, of her own manufacture, and start from Londonderry, 
her native town, and travel to Boston, a distance of forty 
miles, and back, in three days. Mr. President, — there are 
other changes, more recent to which I might advert. I stand 
amid the sepulchres of my fathers, I behold the faces of 
those who were the companions of my youth, and the solace 
of my riper years ; many friends have I found in this world, 
but none truer than the companions of my boy-hood, whose 
names were the first written, and will be the last to fade 
from the tablet of my memory. 

" The earth may perish, the heavens like a vesture may be 
changed, the sun may grow dim with age ; but the God of 
our fathers is our God, we come to the same throne of grace, 
sprinkled with the same atoning blood, and drink at the same 
unfailing fountains, and seek the same eternal Heaven." 

The President then announced the sixth regular toast — 

The Orator of the day. — If our houses and Barnes appear as well a 
century to come, as they do to day, posterity will have no reason to be 
ashamed of their inheritance. 

Hon. Isaac O. Barnes, spoke briefly on the subject of 

The President then announced the seventh regular toast — 

England, Scotland and Ireland. — Our mother countries ; their united 
blood produces the best of stock, defying the world for competition. 

Rev. James T. Woodbury, of Acton, Mass., spoke very 
amusingly in responding to this sentiment. 

" I know not, exactly," he said, " why I am called 
upon to support this sentiment, except that your Com- 
mittee of arrangements have somehow got an impression, 
from my long and intimate acquaintance with the people of 
Bedford, and my love and respect for them, that I am a 
native of the town. Well, whether native or not, I am so 
much pleased with the proceedings here to day, that I have 
not the least objection to being considered such, though per- 
haps, you may have. I am much of the mind of the honest 
Irishman, who, on being asked " How he liked America ?" 


replied, 'Indeed, Sir, I like it entirely, and I have concluded 
on the whole, to make it my native country.' Good blood, 
— good blood, — in old Bedford, — no better in the world. 
Just such as you might expect from such an origin, and from 
such a mixture. If one sort of blood is any better than 
another, I think, from the specimens of the stock that we 
have seen here to day, we may prove yours as good as the 
best. You have feasted us richly, mind and body, we have 
had eloquent prose, good poetry, viands and music, beauty, 
literature, and religion. Your fathers ! no better men, ever 
lived than your fathers. You never need be ashamed of 
them, only see to it, that they never need be ashamed of you. 
Who loved their God, or, who loved their country, any better 
than they ? Are the Colonies oppressed, taxed without being 
represented ; they put in the mild, respectful, but decided 
remonstrance. Is this course persisted in by the King and 
Parliament, and the blood of their brothers shed at Lexing- 
ton and Concord, — they fly to arms, they take the field in 
open resistance, they get the news the same day, they are up 
all the next night, baking bread, mending and making clothes, 
and start, before light, the very next morning for the seat of 
war. They rendezvous at Medford, the head quarters of their 
friend and neighbor, with whom they had fought in the old 
French War, twenty years before — Gen. John Stark. And 
at the next encounter with the Red-coats, on Bunker-Hill, 
the 17th June, they are there, behind the rail-fence ; and 
there they could stand fire from British men-of-war, in Mystic 
river, and the Battery on Copp's Hill, not discharging a mus- 
ket till they could see the white of every man's eye, and then, 
my life for it, they shot down their full share of the thousand 
and fifteen British, killed and wounded that day. Bedford 
was well represented at Bunker-Hill, not in building the 
monument, but in fighting the battle. And the secret of the 
indomitable courage of our revolutionary Fathers, was this, 
they were men of God, men of prayer, they went into battle, 
— ■ like the ' Ironsides ' of the Great Oliver, in 1649, — 
from off their knees, and so they conquered. They were 
Presbyterians, stiffsort of men, but we are determined to love 
them none the less for that. They loved their God and their 
country, they loved the Bible and the Sanctuary, the Sab- 
bath and Sabbath-school. And, on that rainy Sabbath in 1818, 
when the first Sabbath-school was organized in Bedford, in that 
old square School-house that stood yonder, — no wonder old 


Lieutenant John Orr, — Hon. John Orr, — was there ; it was 
just like him to be there, the same set of feelings that led 
him to Bennington battle, where he was shot down, and 
made a cripple for life, led him to that School-house that 
rainy Sabbath, to organize a Sabbath-school, — Love of God, 
and love of God's word, and love of Country. A lame old 
man, but not lame enough, or old enough, to stay at home 
from meeting a rainy Sabbath. Religion, religion in its best 
form, was the grand leading characteristic of the fathers and 
mothers of Bedford ; may it be of their posterity. He was 
there, and not as a silent spectator, he stood up and warmly 
exhorted, those, then children, mere little boys and girls, to 
study the Bible, and obey the Bible. Now, John Orr, we 
hope, is in Heaven, but these, then, little children, are the 
fathers and mothers in Israel, eminent ministers of the 
gospel, lawyers, physicians, merchants and statesmen. 
And these men were not peculiar to Bedford, they were 
the Puritans generally of New-England, we will ever 
thank God that such men lived, and that he sifted the king- 
doms of the earth, and the best of them, too, that he might 
with such seed plant this land." 

The President then announced the eighth regular toast — 

Our Posterity. — May this day be remembered, one hundred years hence, 
by our descendants who shall then be on the stage of action. 

Responded to by Dr. Leonard French, of Fitchburg, 

He alluded to the fact, that Bedford was the native place 
of himself and his parents, and long the residence of his 
grand-parents, of one of whom, on the maternal side, it was 
also the place of nativity. His address was short, but the 
very fact, that his connexions of the same name, constitute a 
large proportion of our population, gave interest to his remarks. 

The President then announced the ninth regular toast — 

The Scotch-Irish. — They left the north of Ireland, braved the dangers 
of the ocean, and came to these western wilds to enjoy their religion and 
liberty. May their offspring appreciate such noble virtues, and cherish them 
as a lich legacy handed down from their forefathers. 

John Aiken, Esq., of Andover, Mass., responded to this 


"I cannot," he said, " so far trespass on the patience of the 
good people, here assembled, as to make a speech at this late 
hour, and yet, I cannot refuse to answer to my name when 
called. With great pleasure, I heard, Mr. President, of your 
proposal to celebrate this anniversary, and with great pleasure 
have I come up hither, to unite with you in commemorating 
the virtues of our honored ancestors. And yet, this is not 
an unmingled pleasure. An absence of thirty years has 
made me a stranger in my native town where I once knew 
every man, woman, and child. The men, whom in my 
youth, I respected, and revered, are gone, all gone, with one 
or two exceptions, and the young men of that day are the old 
men of the present. Of the boys of my own age, but few 
remain, and they as well as myself, so changed, that we 
scarcely recognize each other. Yet sad as these changes are, 
I rejoice to be here, that I may unite with you in testifying 
our respect for our venerated ancestors. Our friend who has 
addressed us to-day, has uttered in our hearing, many names 
which we delight to honor, and I will not attempt to repeat 
what has been so much better said by him. This, however, 
I will say, that we are largely indebted to the character of 
our Grandmothers, many of whom were large-hearted, noble 
women, of rare energy, intelligence, and worth. 

" Some three years ago, it was my good fortune, Mr. Presi- 
dent, — to visit the home of my ancestors, in the North of 
Ireland. Belfast is a flourishing and beautiful city, the centre 
of the linen trade, and surrounded by a country of surpassing 
beauty. The soil is fertile and highly cultivated, and clothed 
through nearly the whole year, with a freshness of verdure 
which in our climate we can see only for a single month. 
And then the fields are small, containing from one half acre to 
three or four acres each, and all surrounded by green hedges. 
Lands for cultivation there, rent for £3, that is, $15 per acre, 
annually. Of course, farms must be small and very produc- 
tive to justify such a rent. But, you will ask, how did the 
people look ? They were a fine looking, intelligent people ; 
in general, well and comfortably clothed, and dwelling in 
neat, commodious, and tasteful habitations. In most respects, 
they strongly resemble their brethren the Scotch, and like 
them are Protestants and generally Presbyterians. The 
superiority of this portion of the Island over other portions 
of equal natural fertility, but under a catholic population, is 
most marked and striking. I took occasion, while at Belfast, 
to look into the business directory of that and the neighbor- 


ing counties, and was gratified to find there many of the 
familiar names of my own native town. But I will not 
trespass further, and end as I began, in giving utterance to 
my cherished and profound veneration for the character of 
my ancestors, the Scotch-Irish." 

The. President then announced the tenth regular toast — 

Brown Bread. — May the hale yeomanry of old Bedford never despise 
the hearty and substantial food of their ancestors. 

Response by Hon. C. E. Potter, of Manchester. 

" Ladies and Gentlemen, — I know not why I should 
have been called upon by the President, to respond to this 
sentiment, unless it be. that he thought from my somewhat 
healthy appearance, I was fond of that most sweet and nour- 
ishing food, Brown Bread. [President, — That is the very 
reason why I called upon the gentleman, his size and build 
show that he was bred upon Brown Bread.] Well, Mr. 
President, I plead guilty to the allegation, and have yet to 
learn, that it is food unpalatable or unhealthy. In fact Mr. 
President, brown bread was the very staff of life to our 
forefathers. It was their dependence in the time of scarcity. 
At all times, its common use gave to them the healthy cheek 
and the strong nerve. Dyspepsia and gout were unknown 
to them. This fact was owing to their simple and healthy 
food. The loaf of brown bread and that other homely, but 
healthy New England dish — the pot of baked beans, was 
upon every table ; and were they oftener seen at the present 
time upon our tables, there would be less of Dyspepsia, Gout, 
and other prevalent diseases of the day. The gentleman 
from Manchester, who has preceded me (Rev. Mr. Wallace,) 
has remarked upon the difference in health, betwixt our fore- 
fathers and their posterity — there is a marked difference, 
especially in the health of the females. Need we wonder 
at the fact ? We are learning to consider the homely, but 
healthy fashions and fare of our forefathers, as old-fashioned 
and vulgar. Different fashions and habits bring different 
tastes. This is true of our food. Strikingly so as to bread. 
The wheaten loaf has taken the place, in some places exclu- 
sively, of the loaf of brown bread. Now it is well known, 
that prisoners and others have subsisted for months upon 
brown bread and water, and it is stated as a fact, by men 
who have tried the experiment, that a dog will die in forty 


days if kept upon flour bread and water. If flour bread and 
water will kill a dog in forty days, can we wonder at the ill 
health of the people of the present time, who partake so 
often and so freely of the wheaten loaf ? The fact is, Mr. 
President, our females are learning to forget how to make 
the substantial, healthy, brown loaf and other homely fare of 
our ancestors, and while thus learning are becoming acquaint- 
ed with modern luxuries of the table, and their sure accom- 
paniment, ill-health. To them in an especial manner would 
I commend your sentiment. < The loaf of brown bread. — 
May the hale yeomanry of old Bedford never despise the 
hearty and substantial food of their ancestors.' But, Mr. 
President, I need not further descant upon the Loaf of Brown 
Bread, its virtues are becoming world-renowned. Famished 
Ireland has learned its virtues, through the generous sympa- 
thies of America ; and the inimitable pen of Carlyle has 
introduced its sweets to the people of England and the Con- 
tinent. But, Mr. President, whence comes corn bread ? It 
is well for us on this occasion and on this gi'ound, to make 
this enquiry. Corn-bread was the gift of the Indians to our 
ancestors. Indian corn is still the destinctive name of that 
maize found in extensive culture and use among the natives 
of this country. The receivers of that gift, have become the 
lords of the soil, but where are the givers ? These questions 
upon this occasion and on this ground are replete with in- 
terest. A century has passed since the incorporation of this 
town. What changes, in the country and in the men of this 
country has a century brought about ! Here we see a most 
striking feature in the progress of civilization. Savage life falls 
before it, like stubble before the raging fire. This very town, 
whose Centennial birth day we now celebrate, but little more 
than a hundred years since, was the home of the Indian. 
Here they found 'plenty. The moose, the deer, the bear, the 
beaver and the otter frequented the banks of the adjacent 
rivers ; the trout, the shad and the salmon filled their clear 
waters, and the wild Indian, as free as wild, sported his birch 
canoe upon their surface. In short, this neighborhood was 
the very paradise of the Indian. This was the home of 
Passaconnaway, or the Child of the Bear, brave and gene- 
rous, the enemy and the friend of the English. Here too, 
ruled Wonalanset, his son, the mild pupil of Eliot. The 
fierce warrior, whose character was so changed by Christian- 
ity that he was called ' Wunnelanshonat,' or < One breathing 
soft words,' and who, rather than join with the Indians, his 


countrymen, in a war against the English, retired to Canada 
with his family and friends. Here too, was the home of his 
successor, the fiercer warrior, John Hogkins, or Kancamagus, 
the grandson of the renowned Passaconnaway, the destroyer 
of Cocheco and the avenger of his people's wrongs upon 
Major Waldron. Here the powerful Bashaba held his court 
and ruled the neighboring nations with as despotic sway as 
the modern Czar ; while myriads of his subjects in war and 
in peace, looked upon his face with fear and trembling. 

" But where are they ? Bashaba and subject are alike gone 
from the land ! Nothing remains to tell of their existence, 
but the beautiful names they gave to the striking natural 
objects around us. Our people have shown good taste in 
retaining these Indian names ; as expressive as beautiful. 
On the North, flows the sparkling Piscataquog — the great 
hunting place of the Indians, as the name implies, Piscata- 
quog, meaning ' The Great Deer Place,' being derived from 
the Indian words, Pos, (great) At tuck, (deer) and Aake, (place. ) 
On the East, rolls the current of the majestic Merrimack,* 
giving employment to tens of thousands of busy people, by 
its unlimited power, expressed by its name ; Merrimack, being 
derived from the words Merruh (of strong current) and Alike, 
(place,) with the letter m thrown in for the sake of the 
sound. On the South, is the slow meandering Souhegan 
or Souheganash, as it was anciently and properly written ; 
derived from the Indian words Souheke, (a plain) and nash, 
the termination, denoting the plural of inanimate nouns. 
Souheganash then, means, ' The Plains,' very expressive 
and appropriate, as the ' Souhegan ' is literally the River 
of the Plains. On the West, is the beautiful lake ' Baboo- 
suck,' which should be written Papoosuck, the Pennacooks 
having no B in their dialect. And how expressive this 
name — Papoosuck being applied to a double lake or two 
lakes formed together by a narrow strait, and the word being 
derived from Papooeis, (a child) and suck, the termination, 
denoting two or more, and meaning ' The Twins ' or the 
' Two Children.' Then, still further West, towers the 
Monadnock, a mountain most beautifully named ; the word 
being derived from Manit, (the Great Spirit) and auke, 

* Judge Potter differs from some others as to the etymology. They make 
it read * Sturgeon.' — [See Allen's Centennial Address, Merrimack.] 

The Judge is probably correct, however, as the Indian word meaning Stur- 
geon is Kopposh, which word has no sound in common with Merrimack. — Ed. 


(place) and meaning, The place of the Great Spirit. Then a 
little to the North, rises the beautiful mountains, the Unca- 
noonucks, or Wunnunnoogunash, as the word should be 
written. This word is formed from the two words, Wun- 
nunnoogun (a breast) and nash, the termination, denoting 
the plural of inanimate nouns, as before suggested, and 
means The Breasts, a name strikingly appropriate, as every 
one will testify who shall gaze upon these beautiful speci- 
mens in our mountain scenery. 

"But, Mr. President, pardon this digression, I could not fail 
to notice these beautiful Indian names, appropriated to natural 
objects so intimately connected with your town, as specimens 
of the Indian language ; a language, permit me to say, 
natural, poetical, philosophical, and euphonious. 

"But, Mr. President, before I close, I wish to set history 
right as to one subject that has been much talked of here to- 
day. The original charters of this town have been exhibited 
and read. One from Massachusetts, in 1733, granting this 
township by the name of Souhegan East and one from New 
Hampshire, in 1750, incorporating the township by the name 
of Bedford. These charters have been shown and are 
claimed, as the first grants of the lands in this ancient town- 
ship. This is a mistake. Almost a century prior to these 
grants, the legislature of Massachusetts made a grant of a 
portion of these very lands to the Bashaba, Passaconnaway. 
In 1662, Passaconnaway presented a petition to the legislature 
of Massachusetts, praying for a grant of lands at Amoskeag. 
The original petition is preserved in the archives of Massa- 
chusetts. The signature to this petition is written thus : 
Papisseconeway. How humiliating, that this old and once 
powerful Prince, the rightful owner of all this domain, should 
be compelled to ask a portion of his birthright, from men 
who had no more right to the land, than the pirate or the 
robber has to his plunder. 

" The following year, the humble petition of King Passa- 
connaway is listened to, and in the very great liberality of 
the legislature of Massachusetts, three miles in length on 
either side of the river, of the Sagamore's own land, is granted 
him ! This land was located above Brenton's land and 
included the North parts of Litchfield and Merrimack and 
the South parts of Manchester and Bedford bordering upon 
the Merrimack. This was the fishing and planting place of 



the Bashaba, Passaconnaway. Here lived his descendants 
till the progress of civilization swept them from the land. 
The hearths of their wigwams are still shown upon your 
intervales, and there the collection of little mounds show 
that the bones of many of them are commingling with their 
native earth. Mr. President, I present the claim of Passa- 
connaway and his people. I do not propose to sue out a 
writ of ejectment against you or my friends, Messrs. Chand- 
ler, Patten, Walker, and others, to dispossess you of your fine 
farms ; but I present their claim for justice to their memo- 
ries ; this I know you will be most happy to accord. At 
least, you will be pleased 

' That their memory liveth on your hills, 

Their baptism on your shore ; 
Your everlasting rivers speak 
Their dialect of yore. 

• That Monadnock on his forehead hoar, 

Doth seal the sacred trust ; 
Your mountains build their monuments, 

Though ye give the winds their dust.' 

" Mr. President, Ladies and Gentlemen, I close with this sen- 
timent, — The Pennacook Indians* — Our farms occupy their 
hunting and planting grounds ; our villages and cities, the 
sites of their wigwams ; our factories, their fishing places, — 
we inherit their birthright without even a mess of pottage ; 
may we do tardy justice to their memories, by according to 
them those virtues our forefathers were unwilling to acknowl- 

The shining lights and worthies of Bedford, past and 
present, were celebrated in the following " Metrical Rhapso- 
dy," written for the occasion by George Kent, Esq., of Bos- 
ton, and read by the Rev. J. T. Woodbury, of Acton, Mass : 

* This tribe of Indians, inhabiting the Merrimack intervales and fishing 
grounds, from Lowell (formerly Pawtucket, or the * forks ') to Concord, 
(formerly Pennacook) was a warlike and powerful tribe. They had forts at 
Pawtucket and at Pennacook, and repulsed the dreaded Mohawks in a battle 
at the latter place. The tribe took its name from ' Pennacook,' which means 
the crooked place, being derived from the Indian words Pannikqua, (crooked) 
and auke, (place.) Any one acquainted with the remarkable windings of the 
Merrimack, through the intervales of Concord, will at once eee the appropri- 
ateness of the name. 


A hundred years ! what hopes and fears 

Are crowded in its pages — 
What scenes to thrill, of good or ill, 

In glancing down the ages ! 
Than Scottish stock, not Plymouth Rock 

Can boast of nobler scions — 
Whose mixture good, of Irish blood, 

Speaks true Scotch-Irish " lions." 

Not lions they, which, in our day, 

Might pass for "just the dandy "— 
But stern old stuff, in aspect rough, 

Yet always shrewd and handy. 
From Ulster's coast, a valiant host, 

They cross'd the deep blue waters, 
And refuge found, on Yankee ground — 

Sires, mothers, sons and daughters. 

In faith severe, they lov'd good cheer 

In mien sedate, were merry — 
Their jokes to crack were never slack, 

When settled down in Derry. 
As true off-shoots of Nuffield roots, 

Our homestead branch was planted 

In Bedford'3 name, of honor'd fame, 

Our charter'd town was granted. 

Hither our Macs had made their tracks, 

Our Orrs, and Gojfes and Pattens — 
Their house-wives, too, of good " true blue," 

Undeck'd with silks or satins, 
No taste had they for fine display, 

Or modern street-yarn spinning — 
Their handiwork — with them no shirk — 

Was making finest linen. 

But not alone is raiment shown, 

As proof of skill well noted — 
In lesser arts they bore their parts, 

To industry devoted. 
Viands well cooked are not o'erlooked, 

In summing up their story — 
Haggis and Brose, in days like those, 

Spoke well the housewife's glory. 

Our " men folks," too, were tough as yew, 

To honest thrift attending — 
Year in and out, with labor stout, 

Fit recreation blending. 
To Derry Fair, both late and air, 

Our quota full would muster, 
There once a year, with hearty cheer, 

Where kith and kin might cluster. 

Not men on stilts — but clad in kilts, 

Scotch bonnets, and the tartan — 
Whose courage tried was well allied 

To bravery of the Spartan. 


But deeds of blood were not their mood, 
Or scenes of rude commotion — 

Wrestle and race found best a place 
To "kittle up their notion." 

Brave, stalwart men, Souhegan's glen 

Could boast from earliest founding — 
Our country's rolls, which proves men's bouIs, 

Show ardent zeal unbounding. 
Orr's honor'd scars, which bloodier wars 

Might fail to more than rival, 
Did but attest the patriot zest 

With which were found to strive all. 

With many a Riddle, no " second fiddle " 

We play'd tp towns around us — 
While with More head, it might be said, 

Some years have always found us. 
Aiken to Burns, allied by turns 

To Moors, and Woods and Walkers — 
With Barrons bold, as may be told, 

Though Little known as talkers. 

Our Bells could sound a note profound, 

If CalVd well to the duty — 
Fitly our Barnes can spin his yarns, 

In measure just to suit ye. 
Smith, ancient name, well known to fame, 

Vose, Gordon, Chandler, Taggart, 
Wallace and Dole, all swell the roll — 

In which we are no braggart. 

We had our Craig, and many a Sprague, 

And Rand, a painter noted — 
Could find a Page for many a Gage, 

'Mongst others we have quoted. 
JVevins and Barr were also " thar," 

With now and then a Parker — 
The town could boast of quite a host, 

If any would remark her. 

Old " Strawberry Hill " had quite a fill, 

And " Squog " was not found wanting — 
And " Joppa " west could show its best, 

With proper ground of vaunting. 
Not to o'erlook Foster, Holbrook, 

Or fail where proud to show man — 
We well may claim, of legal fame, 

'Squire Wilkins and 'Squire Bowman. 

The Pulpit, too, has had a few — 

Though not in number mickle — 
Dispensing truth to age and youth, 

Since days of Father Pickle. 
Memory will claim McGregor's name, 

And Houston's, from time's ravage — 
While love can still, with right good will, 

Turn trustingly to Savage. 


A further store in Sweit, Gilmore, 

French, Woodbury, and Colley, 
We might recount, to large amount — 

But more to add were folly. 
At home, abroad, we're on record 

In states throughout the Union — 
If proved by works, no quips or quirps 

Will bar us full communion. 

Then hail the day, whose natal ray 

Lights up our happy faces ! 
To freedom true we pledge our due, 

Throughout all times and places. 
To friends still dear we send good cheer, 

However wide their roaming — 
In each full heart they'll find a part, 

At every evening gloamiag. 

The President then announced the eleventh regular toast — 

The Ladies of Bedford, — Ever prompt and energetic in every undertaking 
of a worthy and commendable character. 

James O. Adams, of Manchester, spoke in response to this 

" This, Mr. President, is not according to the programme, 
it is not quite the entertainment we anticipated. I came here, 
upon the invitation of your committee, to be a looker on 
and a listener, that I might make a record of the exercises 
of the day ; not once expecting to be called on to unseal my 
lips. You, and your fellow-citizens, have left your common 
vocations, have laid aside all party feelings and sectional 
interests, and assembled here to pay the tribute of grateful re- 
membrance to your ancestors, to give to each other and the 
world the assurance that your fathers' mantles and your fathers' 
spirit have descended to their children, and that you will, this 
hour, kindle anew the fires of patriotism upon the altar of 
your hearts. You have met as the members of one house- 
hold to revive your love for the homes of your youth and 
your veneration for the silent dead, whose virtues were not 
entombed with their ashes. It is a family gathering, and no 
strange voices should be mingled with the familiar words 
uttered here to day. 

" But, Mr. President, if I am an ' outsider ' and have no 
right by birth, residence, or domestic relation of any kind, to 
be a participator in this celebration, I am happy to say, that I 
am not a stranger to the subject of the sentiment upon which 


you have taken the liberty to call me up. The merits of the 
Ladies of Bedford, whether they be called to perform the 
duties of the kitchen, or to adorn the parlor, whether they give 
instruction in the school-room or administer charity to the 
poor, cannot fail to be acknowledged. It has been my good 
fortune often to meet with them, here at their rural homes, and 
in their new residences, in our busy city across the river, and 
I should be unpardonable did I not confess the truth of the 
sentiment. We are accustomed to regard man as the only 
rightful possessor of greatness, and to award to him all the 
glory and heroism, though in her retirement, where the eye 
of the world may not behold her, woman may endure and 
accomplish tenfold more for the good of humanity. The 
greatness of benevolence is her boon, her empire is that of 
the heart. It is for her to bear joy and consolation to those 
around her — to spread peace and happiness around her dwell- 
ing. She may not be seen abroad, except by her works of 
love — her name may not be recorded on the page of the 
world's great achievements, and she may go down to her 
grave, with none living to breathe her praise but the hearts 
of her home and the friends of her little hamlet ; but above 
the priase of human lips, greater than the honor which time 
can give, nobler than the recompense of heroes, will be her 


Written for the occasion by a young Lady. 

Old Bedford may boast of her farmers, mechanics, 

Her doctors, her lawyers, her ministers too, 
In purpose unshaken as pillars of granite, 

Right onward their course is, with strength ever new. 

Pass on ! sons of Bedford, press on in your glory ; 

Pass on ! deck your brows with the bright wreaths of fame, 
Generations, unborn, will rejoice at your story, 

For History just waits now to take down each name. 

Pass on ! sons of Bedford, pass on in your greatness, 
True greatness, the offspring of goodness and truth ; 

" Pass on," is the watch-word, let none plead the lateness, 
Let none linger listless, because of his youth. 

Pass onward, rise upward, the prize is appearing, 
The goal is in sight now, press forward ye brave, 

Secure the bright gem in the prospect that 's nearing, 
And honor immtrtal shall rest o'er each grave. 



[Several volunteer sentiments were given to the President, and many others were ready to 
be given, had time permitted. We have been able to collect a lew for publication.] 

By Hon. Thomas Chandler. — " May the inhabitants of Bedford present 
to the second centennial a more full genealogical, chronological, and histori- 
cal table than the first centennial can give to the second." 

By Capt. William Patten. — " The Inhabitants of Bedford. — When 
they celebrate the second centennial day, may they look back with pleasure 
on us who celebrate the first, while we hope to be celebrating the praises of 
God, eternal in the heavens." 

By Adam Chandler, Esq. — " The 22<£ May, 1850. — A day ever to be 
remembered by those present, inasmuch as it calls to our minds in a most 
striking and vivid view, the feelings, principles and integrity of purpose, which 
governed our ancestors a hundred years ago." 

By Mr. James F. Moore. — " Our Fathers. — Dear to us in life, sacred 
to our memories in death ; while we venerate their names, and cherish their 
virtues, may we also emulate their christian examples." 

By James Walker, Esq. — " The Ladies of Bedford. — Like* their an- 
cestor mothers, industrious, modest and generous, — ready to feed the hungry 
and clothe the naked, — well may we rise up and call them blessed." 


Here prowled the wolf, the hunter roved, 
The red man sang the song he loved, 
Resolved and firm he stood unmoved, 

Nor dreamed of future woe ; 
These broad green lands, from east to west 
From north to south, he once possessed, 
Nor was the savage all unblessed 

A hundred years ago. 

" Alas ! for them, their reign is o'er, 
Their fires are out on hill and shore, 
The wild deer bounds for them no more," 

A broken thing, their bow. 
The white-man's plough turns up thefr grounds, 
And through their woods his axe resounds, 
Beside their rills the lambkin bounds ; 

Shall we exult ? no ! no ! 


We turn us to the pilgrim's cause ; 
We venerate its sacred laws, 
'T is one that's gained high Heaven's applause, 
Doth Heaven's inscription bear. 


Ah ! would we, if we could, forget, 
To whom we owe a sacred debt ? 
No ! never, we '11 revere them yet, 
Those names to memory dear. 

'T was here our noble fathers strayed, 

'T was here they worshipped, here they prayed, 

And here their mould'ring forms are laid ; 

! peaceful be their rest ! 
You scarce perceive the rising mound, 
Yet each is consecrated ground, 
By each, devotion lingers round ; 

Blest be their ashes, — blest. 

And now the heritage is ours, 

This goodly land, these sunny bowers, 

These hills and valleys, fruits and flowers, 

The flocks and waving grain ; 
The stately, towering forest tree, 
The noble waters, sporting free ; 
All, all the beauty eye can see, 

In this, our wide domain. 


[These verses will be read with interest by one who should visit the ' Old Grate Yard ' in 
the east part of Bedford.] 

Stranger ! step lightly on the dead, 

That slumber 'neath the clod, 
The place where lies the pilgrim's head 
Now present with his God. 

Look round thee — view the sunken grave, 

The tomb-stone drooping low, 
The vestige of departed brave, 

One hundred years ago. 

How silent all around thee stand ; 

Death's stillness reigns around, 
No inmate here can burst the bands 

Until the trumpet sounds. 


Lone wanderers, of a hundred years, 

They calmly, sweetly sleep — 
Shed not thy warm and bathing tears, 

For they can never weep. 

Lock'd in death's cold and last embrace, 

Though flow'rs above may bloom, 
Their form has left not e'en a trace, 

These inmates of the tomb. 

But surely, this is not their end — 

Let's look beyond the gloom, 
There, smiles and roses sweetly blend, 

That is, that is, their home. 



Tune, — America. 

God of our fathers ! Thou 
Wilt deign to bless us now, 

While here we wait ; 
Fathers who 've passed away, 
Their noble deeds to-day 
With grateful hearts we may 


Thanks be to God alone 
That them he made his own 

Peculiar care : 
Them, who with prayer and might 
Sought freedom, truth and right, 
And left its glorious light 

For us to share. 

They every danger dared, 
They every trial shared, 

And murmured not ; 
Our pleasant homes so dear, 
To them looked dark and drear, 
And, by their sufferings here, 

Were dearly bought. 

Great God ! thy gracious hand 
Upheld the Pilgrim band, 

When sorely tried ; 
Thou didst our fathers bless, 
May we thine aid possess, 
In works of righteousness 

Be thou our guide. 

When circling years have fled, 
And numbered with the dead, 

The hosts around : 
When children's children fill 
Our place o'er vale and hill, 
O may Thy blessing still 

With them abound. 


We love our town, our good old town, 
We fear no rude oppressor ; 

To-day, her hundredth birth-day is, 
And many come to bless her. 

'T is true, ours is a sterile soil, 
A land of hills and granite ; 
Yet plenty crowns the social board, 
Our peace, there's none can scan it. 


We love her hills, her rugged hills, 
Which flocks and herds are crowning ; 

Her rural shade, her merry rills, 
Her stately forests frowning. 

We cull the flowers, that sweetly bloom 
Beside her peaceful fountains, 

Loading the air with scent more pure 
Than currents from the mountains. 

Though noble are her forest trees, 

And beautiful her waters, 
More noble are her gallant sons, 

More beautiful her daughters. 

We contemplate the present good, 
With heartfelt joy and gladness ; 

But when we muse upon the past, 
Our joy partakes of sadness. 

The church-yard yonder, "cold and drear," 
Can tell the mournful story ; 

Our fathers now are sleeping there, 
Remain, their deeds of glory. 

There moulder, too, our youthful ones, 
To them our tears are given, 

Transplanted were those flowers from earth, 
To bloom more sweet in Heaven. 

The following letters were received, from distinguished 
individuals, by the Committee on Invitations in answer to an 
invitation to be present and unite with us on this occasion. 
The Committee deem it expedient to insert them verbatim. 

Peter P. Woodbury, 

Thomas. Savage, ^ Committee. 

William Patten, 

Washington City, May 6th, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I have just received your polite invitation 
to attend the coming Centennial Celebration of the Town of 
Bedford, on the 22d. inst. Few things would be more grati- 
fying than to accept this invitation, but the pressure of my 
official duties here, till after that date, must prevent it. 


Well may the sons of such Fathers, as first settled the 
county of Hillsborough, celebrate the event with grateful 
hearts. They were a hardy race, accustomed to dangers, 
enured to toil and devoted to civil and religious liberty. 
Bat what distinguished them from almost every free people, 
who preceded them and their co-patriots in planting civiliza- 
tion in the wilderness, was their wonderful foresight as to 
the means necessary to preserve no less than build up liberty. 
They soon saw that education and religion, widely diffused 
among them, could alone be relied on permanently for these 
great purposes. The village school-house and the village 
church, therefore, soon became the ornament of every settle- 
ment and have served to muse luxuriantly all the free princi- 
ples and free institutions which have ever since distinguished 
the county, where I am proud to have been born. 

In whatever quarter of the globe man may be maddened 
by oppression to break his chains, he must remember, that to 
remain long free from them, intelligence must be cultivated 
among the people so as to know the true extent both of their 
rights and duties, and religion be disseminated with all her 
sacred sanctions, so as to make all respect what is right in 
others and uphold the laws and the order of society. 

May the town of Bedford see many more Centennials, 
distinguished like this, by these rich blessings. 


Levi Woodbury. 

Rutland, Vt., May 17th, 1850. 

Dear Sir, — The invitation of your Committee to the 
Centennial Celebration of the settlement of Bedford, next 
week, has been duly received, and for the favor please accept 
my thanks. I have anticipated much happiness in being 
present on the occasion, and reviving my pleasant remem- 
brances of my native town. All my associations with Bed- 
ford, both the place and the people, are delightful. Nothing 
ever occurred to mar them. There I passed the sunny days 
of my childhood and youth. There dwelt my nearest 
kindred and many whom I have ever regarded as friends : and 
I cannot give a truer utterance of my wishes for the town, 
than by saying, " Peace and prosperity be within thee." 

I regret to say, that imperative duties will prevent my 
attendance. The distance, though considerable, would not 


stand in the way, if other circumstances did not forbid. As it 
is, my best wishes shall be with you. The occasion, I doubt 
not, Avill be alike interesting and instructive. And while 
many, especially of the fathers, whom I once respected and 
revered, will not be present, I rejoice to believe that their 
places are occupied by others who are acting well their parts 
for the good of the church and of mankind. 

Accept the assurance of my heartfelt interest in the welfare 
of your Committee, personally, and of all the good people of 
Bedford. May their sun not go down, neither their moon 
withdraw itself. May they be as the house of David, which 
waxed stronger and stronger. 
With kindest regards, 

I am very truly and respectfully yours, 

S. Aiken. 

Amherst, N. H., May 13th, 1S50. 

Gentlemen : — I am honored with your invitation to 
attend the Centennial Celebration, at Bedford, on the 22d 
inst. ; but the frosts of seventy seven years cautions me in 
language, not to be misunderstood, to avoid the excitement 
and fatigue attendant on such meetings. These town celebra- 
tions, especially where they go back to the first inroads made 
upon the forest by civilized man, have ever been peculiarly 
interesting to me. I love to hear from their small beginnings, 
their progress in population, in agriculture, in wealth and 
literature. I love to recur to the hardships and self denial with 
which the early settlers had to struggle, and compare these 
conflicts and privations, with the ease, comforts, conveniences 
and resources of those who succeeded them. These things 
in a town like Bedford, distinguished as she now is, in her 
husbandry, in her schools, in the respectable and substantial 
character of her yeomanry, in her wealth and general im- 
provement, impart an animating and instructive lesson to 

It is to be hoped that some scholar, and I know none 
more fit than the orator you have selected, will undertake the 
task of writing and publishing a minute history of the town, 
from the clearing the first field within its limits, to its present 
high state of improvement, from the planting of the acorn to 


the oak in its full maturity and wide spread dimensions, giv- 
ing also a concise account of the worthies and distinguished 
men of the town, who have been gathered to their fathers. 
Such a history, I am confident would be well received by 
the public, and amply remunerate its author. If your celebra- 
tion shall have no other effect, than to produce such a result, it 
will not have been in vain, but positively useful. 

I am, Gentlemen, with great respect for the inhabitants of 
Bedford, and for you their Committee, 

Your obedient servant, 

C. H. Atherton. 

Detroit, May 16th, 1S50. 

Gentlemen : — I regret exceedingly my inability to accept 
your kind invitation to be present at your Centennial Cele- 
bration of the settlement of the good old town of Bedford. 
It would have afforded me great pleasure to meet my old 
friends upon that occasion, but circumstances beyond my 
own control will prevent. The ashes of the dead as well as 
the loved faces of the living, attract me strongly to my native 
town, and that attachment I find increasing each day of my 
life. Permit me, in conclusion, to offer — "The Town of 
Bedford, — may her descendants (widely scattered through 
the land,) never dishonor their paternity." 

Be pleased to accept, for yourselves and associates, my kind 
regards, and believe me, 

Truly yours, Z. Chandler. 

Key West, May 7, 1S50. 

Gentlemen : — On the 4th instant I received your kind 
letter of invitation to be present at the Centennial Celebration, 
which the inhabitants of Bedford contemplate holding on 
the 22d of the present month. It would certainly give me 
great pleasure to be present on that interesting occasion ; but 
business, as well as the great distance between us, will, I fear, 

Having been absent from my native town for many years, 


I could not, were I personally present, contribute much to 
the interest of the occasion. As a son of Bedford I shall 
always remember her with great interest, and rejoice in her 
prosperity and fame. I could do little more, than give my 
early and youthful impressions of that noble race of men, 
whom the American Revolution left in Bedford. That Rev- 
olution has been called " the times that tried metis souls." 
I would alter this to " the times that purified meii's souls." 
For a sense of common danger destroyed their selfishness, 
and an ardent desire of liberty elevated and liberalized their 
minds. In those days, men thought and acted from a com- 
mon impulse, and rejoiced in a common victory. 

Not a single Tory ever lived in Bedford ; almost all, capa- 
ble of bearing arms, at some period or other of the Revolu- 
tion, gave themselves up to the service of their country. 
The strongest evidence of Toryism, that was ever found in 
the town, as I have often heard the old patriots say, was the 
fact, that old priest Houston, in his extreme age, did not omit 
from his formal prayer, the mention of the King and Gtueen 
quite as soon as the young and warm bloods desired. " There 
were giants in the land " in those days. The times made 
the men ; and the men were inspired to be ready and equal 
to the times. My earliest recollections are busy with the 
old Soldiers — the big and generous hearted men, who had 
seen and loved Washington. Does any one seek the cause, 
why men were better in those days, than at present ? — it may 
be found in the fact, that in modern times the general desire 
of wealth makes men selfish, and selfishness is opposed to 
all excellence. 

The limits of a common letter are wholly inadequate to 
discuss the traits of individual character ; and yet, it was 
the happy blending of individual character, that rendered the 
revolutionary inhabitants of Bedford a race to be remembered 
and revered. There was a great similarity between the 
people of Bedford and Peterborough. They had a common 
origin — they were tried in the same school of affliction, and 
rejoiced over the same deliverance. There was a rivalship 
among many of them in pleasantry, in wit, and in sententious 
sayings. Their virtues bore a Roman stamp, and truth was 
inculcated among them as indeed one of the cardinal virtues. 

Some characters doubtless shone more brightly than others, 
as they were contemplated from this or that particular point 
of view. But there were some traits common to the whole 


population. They nearly all possessed a severe virtue, a 
laborious industry, and cheerful and contented minds ; they 
had received little or no advantages from schools : they 
were self-taught. If they had not the polish of the Grecian 
marble, they possessed the strength and solidity of their native 
granite. I shall long remember, and who will ever forget, the 
vigorous intellect and Roman character of John Orr? the 
excellent hearts and gentlemanly deportment of the Chand- 
lers, the Riddles, the Pattens, the Aikens, the Moors, the 
Walkers, the Wallaces, and others. Memory calls up the 
laborious and sterling French, the facetious McLaughlin, the 
kind William Parker, the feeling McQuestion, the venerable 
Major Goffe and the talented and keen-witted Nathan Barnes. 
But I call on other memories to complete the list, for mine 
will not extend half through the catalogue. Among the 
excellent self-made men of that age, I cannot omit to mention 
one who admitted me early to his friendship, and disclosed to 
me the treasures of his mind ; there never was, perhaps, a 
more perfect character in the town — a man who more strictly 
observed the golden rule, more free from selfishness, or more 
full of the milk of human kindness — than David Patten, Esq. 
None ever heard censure from his lips, while he ever acted 
the peace-maker among those at variance ; he was noble by 
nature, and a Christian by practice ; he abounded in charity, 
and the christian graces adorned his life. Scarcely his inferior 
in any particular, that constituted the good neighbor and the 
good man, was the beloved Thomas Wallace, who was called 
to his reward in middle life. Others, of a later generation, 
have, I trust, filled the places of the choice ones who have 
all been summoned to their reward. When I revisit my 
native town, I see but few faces, here and there, that remind 
me of my youth ; while almost all are strange to my sight, 
and admonish me that time has passed, and that I am growing 
old. I fear, gentlemen, you will think that this letter smacks 
of the garrulity of age. I close with the wish that the youth 
of Bedford may know what their ancestors have been, and 
imitate their virtues. 

With great respect, gentlemen, I remain, 

Your obedient servant, 

A. Gordon. 


Amherst, May 21, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — Your polite invitation to attend the Centen- 
nial Celebration of the inhabitants of Bedford on the 22d inst. 
was duly received, and, until to-day, I fully expected to be 
present on that very interesting occasion. With extreme 
regret I now find, however, that pressing duties will require 
my attention elsewhere at that time. It only remains to 
tender my sincere thanks for the honor of your kind remem- 
brance, and may the day selected to welcome your returning 
kindred and friends prove as fair and beautiful, as, I am 
certain, their greeting will be cordial, and their entertainment 
brilliant and interesting. 

With great respect, 

Your obd't servant, Francis P. Fitch. 

Franklin, May 16, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I acknowledge with grateful emotion the 
receipt of your invitation to be present at the Centennial 
Celebration of your town on the 22d instant, and have to 
■express, in reply, my regret that illness in my family does not 
allow me to entertain the hope of meeting you on that inter- 
esting occasion. Time tries all things. Results developed 
during the course of the past century must form a noble 
eulogy upon the characters and wisdom of the early settlers 
of your territory, and an instructive illustration of the power 
of religious principle and free mind to bless a community and 
the world. May the sweetest influences rest upon the scenes 
and enjoyments of your festival. 

Very respectfully yours, Wm. T. Savage. 

Nashville, May 16, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt 
of your invitation to attend the Centennial Celebration at 
Bedford, on the 22d inst. It would give me great pleasure 
to be present on so interesting an occasion ; but I regret to 
say, that imperative professional engagements compel me to 
forego that gratification. 

I am, most respectfully, 

Your obedient servant, C. G. Atherton. 


Lowell, Vt, May 15, 1850. 

Gentlemen: — Your invitation requesting my attendance 
at the Centennial Celebration, Wednesday, 22d May inst., is 
in hand ; and I must say, that nothing would give me more 
pleasure and satisfaction than to be present on such an occa- 
sion. That old and long cherished town that gave me birth, 
and where I spent the first and most delightful part of my life ; 
the place where I first learned to lisp the endearing name of 
father, mother, brother, and sister ; the place where my first, 
best and purest impressions were made concerning the reality 
of another and better world, to which so many dear kindred 
and friends are gone, will ever be dear to my heart. As I 
cannot be present, I send my good wishes and prayers for 
all kindred and friends, for their present and eternal happiness. 
May union of brotherly love and fraternal affection fill every 
heart, and may all bosoms glow with gratitude to the Giver 
of all good. 

Yours, &c, Nathan Walker. 

18 Wall St., New York, May 18, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — Your favor of the 15th of April, ultimo, 
inviting me to participate with you in your Centennial Cele- 
bration on the 22d instant, has been duly received. I have 
delayed an answer until this late moment in the hope of 
being able to accept it. Present appearances indicate how- 
ever that professional engagements here will prevent me from 
so doing. 

I need not assure you that I feel the highest interest in your 
celebration and that although absent in person, my heart will 
be with you. The occasion is one well calculated to awaken 
in every son of old Bedford interesting reminiscences. 

The township system of New England is one of the 
peculiar features of her well marked character. It is a social as 
well as a political institution. It is conceded to be the most 
perfect model of an absolute democracy now extant. It might 
be added that a happy social equality no where finds so per- 
fect a manifestation. Especially is this true of Bedford. 
Social as well as political equality has always reigned there. 
Overgrown wealth and squalid poverty are generally un- 
known. You, in a measure, realize that happy medium of 


condition which political philosophers have always described 
as the " condition precedent" of a model Republic in a gol- 
den age. 

But every town gathering, of the kind you propose, has its 
own peculiar interest. Every town is more or less a commu- 
nity by itself, and as such has a distinctive character. My 
recollection of Bedford is that it is different from Merrimack ; 
for instance, as New Hampshire from New Jersey. Each town, 
also, has its own town origin, its town history, its town biog- 
raphy and its peculiar town institutions and politics, to lend 
distinctness and individuality to its town character. 

I cannot imagine any thing, Gentlemen, which would be 
more delightful than to participate with the assembled inhabi- 
tants of my native town in discussing and rescuing from 
oblivion her ancient story, her original settlement, her doings 
in the Revolution and in the war of 1812, her contributions 
to the Army in men and money, her prominent citizens now 
dead, her growth, her emigration, and every thing worthy of 
note in her history. I know that the story would be one of 
which Old Bedford might well be proud. I feel it to be an 
honor that as one of her sons I am entitled to your invitation. 
The recollections which such an occasion suggests, the old 
localities, the streams, the woods, the green hills, the old 
Church and the adjoining burying ground, where sleep my 
own kith and kin, and those well remembered faces which 
used to give vitality to those scenes, neither time or distance 
can ever obliterate from my mind. I cherish them as the 
sacred, golden links which tie me to youth and home, and I 
can truly say of my native town in the words of another, 

" Where' er I roam, whatever lands I see, 
My heart untrammeled, fondly turns to thee." 

With the sincerest good wishes for the success of your 
Celebration, I remain, 

Very truly yours, P. T. Woodbury. 

Elmira, N. Y., May 20, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I had designed leaving this morning to 
attend the Centennial Celebration of the settlement of Bedford, 
to which I am invited by your kind note of the 15th ult. ; 


but owing to business engagements which I hoped to have 
been able to postpone, I find at this late hour that it will be 
entirely impracticable for me to leave home. 

I need not say that it would have afforded me great grati- 
fication to have met, on so interesting an occasion, the 
remnant of the fathers with whom I passed my earliest 
years, and to have taken by the hand those of my contem- 
poraries in age, who remain to fill the places of many of those 
fathers long since gone down to the tomb. To the stern 
and uncompromising virtues which characterise the Scotch- 
Irish, who, I believe, were pioneers in the settlement of the 
town, is no doubt attributable the permanent prosperity of 
their descendants ; and that large share of social happiness 
which pervades the homes of those who have staid beneath 
the paternal roof-tree, unseduced by the restless spirit of 
adventure which has lured abroad so many of the sons of 
New England. 

Permit me, therefore, to give you the following sentiment : 
The Scotch-Irish, — in war they can furnish a Stark, — in 
peace, a Benjamin Orr. 

I have the honor to be, 

Very respectfully, your obd't servant, 

Ariel, S. Thurston. 

Boston, May 11, 1850. 

Gentlemen: — Your polite invitation to attend the Cen- 
tennial Celebration of the town of Bedford, N. H., is as 
undeserved as it was unexpected to me. I regret that 
weighty reasons, not under my control, prevent my personal 
attendance on an occasion which will mark the improvement 
and record the physical and mental progress of your munici- 
pality. Having passed that way within a few years, I feel 
confident that the inhabitants of Bedford for these hundred 
years have been up and doing whatever their hands have 
found to be done ; and a long and intimate acquaintance with 
their spiritual guide in these latter days, assures me of their 
mental advancement. Such means and appliances continued 
for a hundred years to come, will light a light which cannot 
be hid under a bushel or in the shadows of the hills, but 
must be set on a candlestick or on the mountain tops, 
enlightening all around; which is the sincere desire of a 
New Hampshire boy of the Hillsborough stamp. 

Your invited guest, Isaac P. Osgood. 


West Buxton, May 8, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I have received your invitation to be present 
at your contemplated Centennial Celebration, on the 22d inst. 
Few occasions would afford me greater pleasure than to be 
present with you on that day, but age and distance will 
prevent. I wish you, on that day, all the happiness and 
satisfaction such an occurrence is calculated and designed to 

I am, gentlemen, respectfully, 

Your friend and servant, Chas. Coffin. 

Ann Arbor, May 16, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I received your polite invitation to attend 
your celebration on the 22d inst., and it is with no small 
degree of regret, that I inform you that it will be impossible 
for me to be present on that occasion. Whether present or 
absent, in person, be assured my heart will be with you ; for 
who can fail to feel an interest in the welfare of his native 
land — the home of his fathers — the happy scenes of his 
childhood ? Who can but wish himself present on such an 
occasion as the one you celebrate on the 22d inst. — an 
occasion of intense interest to us all? 

As we look back on the last century, and cast a thought 
forward, we can but faintly imagine what changes and 
improvements may take place in even half that length of 
time. It is beyond the reach of human calculation. Only 
let the onward progress of the present day continue for the 
next half-century, and what shall we become ? or rather, 
what shall we not become? Had I time and talent to 
enlarge upon this thought, much interest might be awakened 
on a subject of such importance. But I leave it to those 
better qualified to think and write, than I can pretend to. 
Yours, with great respect, 

Geo. S. McAllaster. 

Ann Arbor, May 3, 1850. 

Gentlemen: — Your note of the 15th ult., inviting me to 
attend the Centennial Celebration on the 22d inst., was duly 
received, and in reply I can only say, that notwithstanding 


the good old town of Bedford is not the place of my nativity, 
yet it would afford me great pleasure to be present on that 
interesting occasion. Business about that time calls me in 
another direction, so that it will not be in my power to meet 
you on that day. But, Gentlemen, you will have my best 
wishes, and I remain, 

Your obedient servant, 

Reuben P. Gibson. 

Manchester, May 1, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — I have received your invitation to be present 
at the Centennial Celebration of the Town of Bedford, on 
the 22d inst. I very much regret that an unavoidable absence 
from my home, will probably deprive me of the pleasure of 
attending. The happy idea, (original, I think with you,) of 
making this celebration the occasion of collecting and 
committing to the press, the history of your town and of 
its early inhabitants, will add permanent importance and 
value to the natural interest of such a meeting. I hope 
many of our towns may emulate the example of Bedford. 
You have my heartiest wishes, that the day and all its 
incidents may be agreeable, and that they may afford to all 
interested, present and absent, the most pleasing recollections. 
Very Respectfully, Yours, &c, 

Samuel D. Bell. 

Weston, Vt., June 8, 1S50. 

Gentlemen: — Your invitation to attend the Centennial 
Celebration at Bedford, on the 22d ult., forwarded by my 
brother, I received a week previous. It was a matter of deep 
regret to me, that I could not attend. Just at that period, my 
time and attention were so occupied in preparation to remove 
my family to this place, that I could not accept your invitation, 
without very serious inconvenience. The address, with all 
the historical reminiscences you have collected, I expect will 
be published, and thus many interesting facts and circum- 
stances will be secured from oblivion. To every native of 
Bedford this must be an interesting little volume. As a record 
of events from the earliest settlement of the Town, it will no 


doubt be interesting to our successors at the close of another 
century. That the inhabitants of Bedford may seek first the 
kingdom of God and his righteousness, and enjoy the 
promised consequent prosperity, is my earnest desire and 

With high respect and esteem, Yours, 

John Walker. 

Haverhill, May 13, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — Your invitation to be present at the 
Centennial Celebration, to be holden on the 22d inst., is 
received, for which you will please accept my grateful 
acknowledgements. It would give me much pleasure to 
revisit the scenes of my boyhood on that occasion, but I 
regret to say that business of an urgent nature will prevent 
my attendance. It is long since I visited my native town, 
and doubtless many changes have occurred; yet although 
many once familiar faces would be no longer there to greet 
me, I would gladly receive the friendly grasp of the few 
who remain. My heart will ever cherish the memory of its 
early home, and be assured I shall be with you in spirit on 
your coming Festival. 

In closing, permit me to offer one sentiment : — The Tree 
of Liberty, which grew on my native soil.* As that, 
although but a barren trunk, put forth branches and expanded 
till it became a lofty and magnificent tree, so may the liberty 
'of which that was the emblem, continue to nourish and 
extend till all the nations of the earth shall be Free. 

Yours, Respectfully, 

Jacob Bell. 

Beloit, Wis., May 13, 1850. 

Gentlemen : — It would be in vain I should attempt to 
express the gratification derived from your invitation to meet 

* Alluding to a tree on the Bell place, in the top of which was inserted, in 
the time of the Revolution, a liberty pole ; and the old saying was, if the 
tree lives, American liberty will flourish. The tree did live, until some late 
owner of the place cut it down. — Editor. 


with and make one of your number, in celebrating the 
Centennial day of the town in which I was born, and in 
which I lived more than one-half of that period of time. 
Inclination is strongly in favor of attending, and none could 
enjoy the occasion and the company we should expect to 
meet with, better than myself and family. But the pressure 
of business at this season, will render it impossible. * * * * 

Yours, truly, 

Daniel Gordon. 

The following Notices of the occasion, are extracted from 
the public journals of the day. The following is from the 
Boston Post : — 

" Bedford is near Manchester, as near as the Merrimack river will permit it 
to be. It contains about 2000 inhabitants, and boasts of fourteen district 
schools, one private academy, and but one organized church — the Presbyterian 
church founded by the original settlers, who came here from Ulster in the North 
of Ireland, because the pudding-headed house of Guelph did not know enough 
to permit them to perform their preaching, praying, marrying, christening, and 
burying, according to the Presbyterian forms, as carried over to Ireland from 
Scotland some century before. The present pastor, the Rev. Thomas Savage, 
is only the third, who has presided over the ministrations of the church from 
its foundation, and judging from his well-knit frame, and general appearance, 
and the activity and energy displayed by him to-day, I should say that there 
is still good twenty years of hard parochial work in him. There has been a 
Universalist, and is now a Baptist Society, but, at present, the Presbyterians 
alone sustain public worship. Agricultural pursuits are favorable to steadiness 
in religious principles, and there is very little business other than farming 
carried on in Bedford, except at a point or two on the line of the river, where 
marks of a new people and new notions are discoverable. 

The celebration was a " town affair," provided for by the voters in town 
meeting assembled, and nearly every native resident able to move about took 
part in it, together with some hundreds who had gone forth to seek their 
fortunes elsewhere, but had returned on this appropriate occasion to see their 
relatives and exchange kindly greetings with the friends and companions of 
their youth. Everything was conducted v ith decent simplicity, and serious 
yet social propriety. 

At 11 o'clock, a procession was formed in front of the meeting-house, under 
the direction of Gen. William P. Riddle, as chief marshal. Full six hundred 
ladies, from blooming misses of fourteen to venerable grandmothers, led the 
van. Then came a good band, followed by about a thousand of the men and 
hardy lads of Bedford. A march of an eighth of a mile brought them to the 
spot prepared for the ceremonies of the day, where eight long and loaded 
tables gave notice of a substantial collation. 

For the managers and distinguished guests, a platform, decorated with 
evergreens and other tasteful ornaments, had been erected, and there the 
main work of the jubilee was performed. 

Dr. Peter P. Woodbury, President of the Day, conducted the proceedings 
with great tact in a most successful manner, putting things through by 
daylight, keeping the ball in motion, omitting nothing set down in the 
programme, nor hurrying or slightingly disposing of any part thereof. He had 
occasion to make several explanatory addresses, and the pithy, courteous, and 
lively way in which he handled these incidental items contributed essentially 
to the good humor of the celebration, as well as to the dispatch of business." 


The New Yoi~k Tribune thus speaks of the Celebration : — 

" Centenary of Bedford, N. H. — The people of Bedford, New 
Hampshire, celebrated the hundredth anniversary of the founding of their 
town, on Wednesday, 22d inst. The day was fair and bright — the only clear, 
warm, rainless day for some weeks — and the attendance of some two thousand 
citizens and ex-citizens gave a deep interest to the celebration. Several had 
travelled hundreds of miles on purpose to attend, though obliged by stress of 
business to start directly from the ground on their homeward journey. 

Bedford was first settled something more than a hundred years ago by 
pioneers from the great central hive of Londonderry, N. H., which had been 
settled some twenty or thirty years before, by a colony of Scotch-Irish 
Presbyterians, who received grants of lands there in consideration of their 
signal services in the cause of Protestant Ascendancy in the memorable siege 
of Londonderry, the battle of Boyne Water, and other struggles in Ireland 
between the adherents of William III. and James II. respectively. It was 
chartered in 1750, by George II. and named after the then Duke of Bedford, 
a Minister of State, and ancestor of Lord John Russell, now Premier. 
Bedford lies on the west side of the Merrimack River, opposite old London- 
derry, now divided into three or four townships, one of which (Litchfield) 
intervenes between the present town of Londonderry and the River. With 
Nashua some fifteen miles south, and Manchester on the north-east — the two 
being the chief seats of Manufactures in New Hampshire — Bedford remains 
constant to its primitive Agricultural pursuits, to its Presbyterian faith (in the 
main,) and to its simplicity of manners and purity of morals. The soil, though 
in good part strong, is hard and rocky, except some fertile intervale on the 
Merrimack and two or three tributaries. Lately, the growth of Manchester 
begins to overflow in dwellings on the Bedford side of the River, increasing 
the population and wealth of the town without changing its general character. 
Its main aspects have scarcely altered in thirty years, and the dwellings 
scattered within sight of the Presbyterian Church in its centre, are about as 
many as they were then, — say forty in all. 

Dr. Peter P. Woodbury, (brother of Judge Levi) presided at the celebration, 
and a most interesting Historical Discourse, illustrative of the origin and 
settlement of the town, and of the North of Ireland Scotch-Irish race, and 
their extensive migration to this country during the former half of the la6t 
century, was read by Isaac O. Barnes, late Marshal of Massachusetts, a 
native of this town. Many of the facts therein embodied are fading from 
the memories of even the descendants of that hardy, God-fearing, man-defying 
race, and will be read with vivid interest by thousands. 

The first clergyman of the town, Rev. John Houston, was the only man in 
it who took the side of Great Britain in the commencement of the 
Revolutionary struggle. Though previously beloved and esteemed, and a 
most worthy and devoted Christian, he was dismissed, and treated as a public 
enemy. A large portion of the able-bodied citizens were in the first American 
Army that beleaguered Boston and fought at Bunker Hill ; nearly or quite 
half of all who could handle a musket were with Stark at Bennington and 
with Gates at Saratoga. Col. (afterwards Gen.) Stark lived and died on his 
farm just North of the Bedford line. Matthew Thornton, a signer of the 
Declaration of Independence, lived and died just South of Bedford. 

Robert Walker, son of the first settler of the town, was present at the 
celebration, aged 87. The second wife of the missionary, Newell, and several 
others who have been eminent in Religious efforts have been born here. 
Some six or eight Presbyterian Clergymen, natives of Bedford, were present 
and took part in the exercises of Wednesday. And when the whole 
eonrrregation rose to join in singing the seventy-eighth Psalm, according to 
an ancient version and to a venerable tune, the resemblance to a gathering of 
Scottish covenanters of the olden time, as described by Scott, among others, 
was very vivid and striking." 




Bedford, lying in the east part of Hillsborough County, 
N. H., is situated on the west bank of the Merrimack river, 
Latitude 42° 50'. It is bounded, north, by Goffstown; east, by 
the Merrimack river, which separates it from Manchester and 
the north part of Litchfield ; south, by the town of Merrimack, 
and west, by Amherst and New Boston : containing an area of 
20.660 acres, and represented on the map nearly in the shape 
of a square. It is 8 miles from Amherst, 21 from Concord, 
and 50 from Boston ; the north-west corner of the town lies 
near the base of the Uncanoonucks mountains ; the Merrimack 
and the Piscataquog are the only rivers in the town, the latter 
passes through its north-east corner, where there is a pleasant 
and nourishing village, which will be noticed under Piscata- 
quog village ; in the west part of the town the land is uneven 
and abounds in stone, but the qualities of the soil are warm 
and moist ; the east part, bordering on the Merrimack river, is 
a pine plain with some very productive intervales ; the southern 
part of Bedford is noted for its abundant supply of clay — 
suitable for brick-yards. In some years from 20 to 30 brick- 
yards have been in operation at a single season, millions of 
brick have here been made in a single year ; Lowell and 
Lawrence, Mass., and Nashua and Nashville, N. H., have been 
supplied with brick from these yards. Clay, also, has been 
found of superior quality and worked into brick near the 
centre of the town, on the farm of Gordon and Woodbury. 

In mineralogy the town abounds in a great variety of speci- 
mens ; iron ore is found at different places, in several varieties ; 
sulphurate of iron embedded in common granite, and red 
oxide of iron combined with alumen, are common. Black 
lead, pyrites, copper, schorl, hornblende, epidote, talc, mica, 
black, yellow and green ; gneiss, crystalized quartz, are found 
here ; carbonate of lime (marble) is found in a chasm at the 
west part of the town, on the David Stevens' farm : One hun- 
dred and five years ago, Colonel Gone built a forge, with a 
trip hammer, at the mouth of Crosby's brook, and wrought 


the ore into iron in considerable quantities. Within a few" 
years iron ore, to some extent, has been transported to Bil- 
lerica and Lowell, and other forges out of town. 

A fine quarry of granite near the centre of the town, on 
the farm of the late William Riddle, Esq., has been worked 
to good profit ; from this place the Boston and Lowell Rail 
Road Company obtained much of their stone for headers and 
sleepers on that road, and here the Concord and Nashua Rail 
Road Company obtained the stone to build the rail road bridge 
over Goffe's Falls, and from hence, also, quantities of granite 
have been carried to Manchester and Nashua for building 

In forest trees, Bedford is not deficient ; the principal are 
white, red, and black oak, walnut, chestnut, maple, birch, 
pine, and hemlock. In the season of autumn, the woods 
present a singularly diversified and beautiful aspect, the 
blended trees and rich colors of the foliage delight the eye of 
the spectator, and seem to give an air of cheerfulness to the 
decline of the year. The mountain laurel or spoon-hunt 
abounds here in June and July, giving to the town the 
appearance of one continued flower garden ; the botanical 
name of the bush is Kalmia Latifolia ; the leaf is narrow 
and leather like, and the shrub bears some remote affinity to 
the magnolia, being, like that, an evergreen, it is also called 
calico bush. Of the white oak, great quantities of timber 
and plank have been obtained for ship-yards, and conveyed 
to Medford and Charlestown, Mass., by means of the river 
and Middlesex canal ; Newburyport has, also, had great 
supplies of oak and pine from this town, transported from 
one place to the other by the river Merrimack. But the 
chestnut, of late, has exceeded all the other trees in demand 
for the market, vast supplies having been transported for 
sleepers for the various rail roads in the adjacent country. 

With regard to staple commodities, to which attention has 
been paid in Bedford, the hop formerly employed a great 
many farmers, some years there was a produce in this article 
of 100.000 lbs. It is doubtful whether the farming interest, 
as a whole, was much benefitted by the cultivation of this 
plant, it led to a neglect of bread stuffs, and — though the 
price was sometimes very high, hops being sold some years 
for 75 cents per lb., — yet the average price was not over 
10 cents per lb. : the hop-root was first brought to Bedford 
by William Campbell. The same root will yield well, 


several years, without being removed ; in this respect, it 
resembles the culture of the sweet potatoe. 

The local situation of Bedford, so near important manufactur- 
ing towns, has of late awakened in the minds of the citizens 
great attention to improvement in the various branches of 
agriculture, and the raising of produce for the market ; the 
city of Manchester, four miles from the centre of Bedford, and 
its own village, Piscataquog, also, Nashua and Nashville, a few 
miles to the south, give the inhabitants of Bedford a market 
for all the produce of their farms, far superior to anything 
the}' - ever had before, and superior to the advantages enjoyed 
by most towns in the State. An Agricultural Society, consist- 
ing of citizens in Bedford, was formed in 1S45, which has 
exerted, and still continues to exert, a good influence on the 
agricultural condition of the town ; they meet once a quarter 
and discuss agricultural subjects, and sometimes have an 
address from one of their own number or some gentleman 
out of town. 

While the native forests are fast falling before the wood- 
man's axe, attention ought to be more directed to the culti- 
vation of shade and ornamental trees. Some young men 
have already engaged in this laudable work ; on the common, 
near the town-house, William R. Woodbury, son of Doctor 
Woodbury, set out two or three elm trees in 1S43, and in 
1847, Mr. Charles Kendall set out maple trees on the common, 
also, those that surround the Presbyterian meeting-house. 
For every tree judiciously set out, there is a new claim on 
the gratitude of posterity. 

Th$re are some objects of curiosity worthy of note. 
On the west line of Bedford, near Chestnut hills, is a vast 
fissure, or opening in a mighty mass of rock, apparently 
made by some convulsion of nature ; over the precipice thus 
formed is a fall of water some 200 feet into the gulf below. 
Here are found several excavations in the solid rock, 
sufficiently large to contain several persons, one of them 
bearing some resemblance to a pulpit, has given name to the 
place ; at the bottom there is always a small pool of water, 
where, in the hottest day, the warmth of the sun scarcely 
penetrates. As one stands on the verge of this tremendous 
precipice, emotions of sublimity will be awakened ; and any 
lover of nature, who should have leisure on a pleasant day, 
would find himself well paid by a visit to this wild and 
romantic spot. Sebbin's pond, in the south-east part of the 


town, is somewhat of a natural curiosity ; strictly speaking, 
there are three ponds or divisions of water which appear to 
be united by their waters beneath an extensive bog which 
floats on the surface, and rises and falls with the water ; the 
ponds, taken together, are about eighty rods in diameter, and 
abound with different kinds of fresh water fish. 


In giving some account of the Origin of the township, it 
will be necessary to call the attention of the reader to the first 
general Indian war, which occurred in 1675 ; it was a war 
with the Narraganset Indians, and was known as " King 
Philip's War," and was attended with great distress and 
cruelties, many towns in Massachusetts suffered exceedingly, 
but the enemy was at last scattered and King Philip slain. 
Hutchinson, in his History of Massachusetts, thus relates 
the slaughter: — "Philip fled from one swamp to another, 
divers times very narrowly escaping, losing one chief coun- 
sellor after another ; his uncle and sister, and at last his 
wife and son were taken prisoners. Being reduced to this 
miserable condition, he was killed August 12th, 1676, as he 
was flying from a pursuing party, out of a swamp near his 
residence, at Hope, now Bristol, Rhode Island ; one of his 
own men, whom he had offended and who had deserted to 
the English, shot him through the heart ; instead of the 
scalp, he cut off his right hand which had a remarkable scar, 
well known to the English, and which was exhibited as a 
curiosity. Many of the Indian chiefs were executed at 
Boston and Plymouth, the people were greatly exasperated ; 
every person in the two colonies having lost a relative or 
near friend, but," adds the historian, "this does not excuse 
the cruelty." The cause of this exterminating war, was, in 
fact, the encroachments of the English upon the Indians. 
With the shrewdness and sagacity of an Indian, Philip no 
doubt saw, that, in this way, his people must melt away before 
the white man. As a matter of curiosity, it may not be out 
of place to give an authentic letter from King Philip, to 
Prince, of Plymouth, with the original spelling and expression, 
exactly as given by Gookin in his account of the Indians : — 

" King Philip desire to let you understand that he could not 
come to the court, for Tom his interpreter has a pain in his 


back, that he could not travel so far, and Philip's sister is 
very sick. Philip would entreat the favor of any of the 
magistrates, if any English or Engians speak about any land, 
he pray you to give them no answer at all. This last 
summer, he maid the promies with you, that he would not 
sell no land in 7 years time, for that he would have no 
English trouble him before that time — he has no forget that 
you promis him. He will come a sune as posible he can, 
to speak with you, and so I rest your very loving friend, 

Philip, dwelling at Mt. Hope neck. 
To the much honored Governor, 
Mr. Thomas Prince, dwelling at Plymouth." 

This letter from Philip to Prince was written before the 
war, probably about 1660, or '70. 

In 1732, the General Court of Massachusetts, in consider- 
ation of the important services of the officers and soldiers in 
that war, granted to them or their legal representatives, seven 
townships of land, as a reward. These were numbered, and 
it is curious to notice that No. 1, was in Maine, now called 
Buxton ; No. 2, in Massachusetts, now called Westminster ; 
No. 3, was Amherst, or Souhegan-West ; No. 4,* adjoined 
Hatfield, Massachusetts ; No. 5, was Bedford, or Souhegan- 
East ; No. 6, was Templeton, Massachusetts; No. 7, was 
Gorham, Maine. 

Since the Indian war, a considerable time had elapsed, — 
more than fifty years, — and many of the officers and soldiers 
who served in that expedition, were dead. Of 120 persons, 
to whom these townships were granted, only 20 veterans 

* No. 4, was originally at the Falls of Amoskeag, on the Merrimack, and 
embraced the present town of Goffstovvn. In 1736, the proprietors of this 
township requested of the General Court, liberty to take up their lands 
elsewhere, and in 1737, the Court granted them, instead of the land at 
Amoskeag, a tract at Quabbin, now Greenwich, in the county of Hampden, 
Massachusetts, and another tract west of Hatfield in the same county, both 
to contain six miles square, or 23,040 acres. In July, 1739, the General Court 
accepted of the report of a committee, granting to the proprietors of township 
No. 4, 15,779 acres at Quabbin, and 7261 acres, West of Hatfield, making 
23,040 acres. In 1739, the proprietors complained of ponds, swamps, &c, 
in these tracts, and the General Court added 3500 acres to the grant West of 
Hatfield. The lands West of Hatfield were included within the township of 
Chesterfield, and after that was divided, part of them were in Chesterfield, 
and part in Goshen, though most of them are in Greenwich. — [JVbie by the 
Editors, for which they are indebted to Charles Coffin, Esq.] 


were living in 1733. All the grantees or their representatives 
assembled on Boston Common, June 6, 1733 ; at which time 
they divided themselves into seven distinct societies, of 120 
persons each, and entitled to one of these townships. From 
each society, three persons were chosen as a committee, who 
on 17th October, 1733, assigned the several townships among 
their respective societies. Of the individuals to whom this 
township was assigned, 57 belonged to Boston, 15 to 
Roxbury, 7 to Dorchester, 2 to Milton, 5 to Braintree, 4 to 
Weymouth, 13 to Hingham, 4 to Dedham, 2 to Hull, 1 to 
Medfield, 5 to Scituate, and 1 to Newport, Rhode Island. 
Of the original proprietors, upon the book of records, which 
is preserved with the Town books, very few became settlers, 
the greater part disposing of their claims to those who 
became occupants of the soil. 


In the history of the towns bordering on the Merrimack, 
a notice of the aboriginal inhabitants forms an important 
part. That part of this town that lays along the Merrimack, 
was a favorite haunt of the red man, who was once the sole 
tenant of this western wilderness. The Indian once roamed 
these woods ; the land we cultivate, the forest, the rivers, the 
mountains around us, once swarmed with a distinct race of 
the human family. It would be interesting if we could get 
more information relating to the aboriginal inhabitants of this 
part of the country, and much is it to be regretted that there 
has been no historical account of the various tribes that once 
frequented the banks of the Merrimack. 

The Penacook Indians inhabited what is now Concord, 
and the country for many miles above and below on 
Merrimack River ; and the Indians, the traces of whose 
settlement are still visible in this town, on the banks of the 
river, no doubt belonged to this tribe, who with other smaller 
tribes, or bands, acknowledged subjection to Passaconnaway, 
the great Sachem of Penacook. They ranged the -banks of 
the Merrimack, in quest of fish and game, which then 
greatly abounded. The head of an arrow, or fragment of a 
human skeleton, is still occasionally thrown up in the sand, 
or uncovered by the plough ; the last traces of a race that 
hunted and fished on these waters. 

On the bank of the Merrimack River, opposite Goffe's Falls, 


is a spot of ground about ten rods long, and four rods wide, 
which is supposed to have been an Indian burial-place. It 
was an open space, and entirely cleared, when the first settlers 
first explored the country. The surface of the bank is about 
forty feet above the river. Human bones, at various times, 
have been washed from the bank. In the summer of 1821, 
Dr. P. P. Woodbury and Dr. Freeman Riddle obtained a 
part of three skeletons from this place. Some of the bark 
in which they were deposited, remained. One of them 
appeared to have been put in the ground in a sitting posture. 
All their heads lay towards the South. One was supposed 
to be a female. The hair was entire, and was done up in a 
bunch on the back part of the head, in a manner not unlike 
that practised at the present day. The skeletons were sent 
to Paris, by Dr. Woodbury, for anatomical investigation. 

Goff's Falls, and Amoskeag, or Namaske in the Indian 
dialect, were among the principal residences of the great 
Sachem, Passaconnaway. Here, no doubt, he held his 
councils ; here he swayed the sceptre of his power. His 
dominions appear to have been very extensive ; reaching on 
both sides of the Merrimack up to its sources, and eastward to 
the Piscataqua River. 

Unlike Philip, Passaconnaway was friendly to the English. 
His friendship, however, might have been from motives of 
policy. He saw the English must ultimately prevail, and 
therefore, to use the language of Gookin, — " this old 
Sachem thought it his best prudence for himself and posterity, 
to make a firm peace with the English in his time, and 
submitted to them his land and people, as the records of 
Massachusetts, in New England, declare, which peace and 
good correspondency he had and maintained all his life, and 
gave express command to his son, that he should inviolably 
keep and maintain amity and friendship with the English, 
and never engage with any of the Indians in a war against 

By his persuasion, it is possible that the great " Apostle of 
the Indians," Eliot, may have been induced to visit these 
places in the fishing season, when the Indians assembled in 
great numbers at the different falls in the river, to meet the 
incoming tide of fish, as they came up every year. In a 
letter to a friend in England, dated October 29, 1649, he 
writes, — "I had, and still have a great desire to go to a great 
fishing-place, Namaske, upon the Merrimac River." Rev. 


Mr. Allen, who has given this letter more at large, in his 
Merrimack Centennial, expresses his opinion that Namaske 
may be Amoskeag ; and for this there is some confirmation 
in the fact, that, one hundred years ago, Amoskeag was 
spelt Namaskeag, as appears from Hon. Matthew Patten's 
journal, where the place is often mentioned. It might 
possibly have been Goffe's Falls, near to the great burying- 
place, but it is not material. It is an interesting thought, and 
not improbable, that the voice of the great " Apostle of the 
Indians," was once heard amid these then uncultivated 
forests, proclaiming to the Aborigines the way of salvation. 

Wannalancet, son and successor to Passaconnaway, was 
a convert to Christianity, and also a steadfast friend to 
the English. Of this chief, Gookin relates the following 
anecdote, perfectly in keeping with the Indian character. 
Once, on his return from a destructive war, he called on Rev. 
Mr. Fiske, at Chelmsford. Among other inquiries, the chief 
wished to know of Mr. Fiske, whether Chelmsford had 
suffered much during the war. Being informed that it had 
not, and that God should be thanked for it, he replied, " And 
me next." 

Scenes and incidents no doubt occurred, in ancient times, 
amid these localities, the actors in which belonged to another 
race, — scenes and incidents which no tablet has ever 
recorded, and which no tradition has transmitted. The 
following authentic account may be a specimen of many 
that have passed into oblivion. 

At a very early period, James and Robert Walker, brothers, 
were engaged in manufacturing turpentine from pitch-pine 
trees, on the East side of the Merrimack River, opposite the 
farm of Mr. Josiah Walker. It was their summer business ; 
they cleared a field, planted corn, and erected a camp near 
their field, in which to sleep and do their domestic work. 
One Saturday, two tribes or bands of Indians, came to their 
camp, and some of them wished to leave their guns in the 
camp over night, in order to keep them dry, which request 
was granted. They afterwards went down to the river, near 
the mouth of " Spring Brook," and encamped. Early the 
next morning, one of the Indians was heard coming in great 
haste, and wanted his " Baskeag," (gun,) which they let him 
have. He was hardly gone, when another came on a similar 
errand ; they asked him what he wanted to do with his gun, 
which he seemed so anxious to get. He replied " The other 


Indian — he go shoot me ; me kill him!" and as they had 
delivered one of them his gun, they thought they would 
accommodate the other likewise. The two brothers Walker 
dressed themselves, and went down where they could 
overlook the encampment, unperceived by the Indians ; 
expecting to be spectators of an Indian battle. The first 
object that met their view was two Indians in a sitting 
posture, with their guns pointing at each other, at the dis- 
tance of two or three rods. They remained in this position 
some time, apparently with the intention of trying each 
others courage. At length one dropped his gun, sprang to his 
feet, and extended his hand towards the other, who immedi- 
ately performed a similar movement, and the expected battle 
was avoided. The tribes during this time were placed in the 
order of battle, with knives, tomahawks, and bows and arrows, 
placed on logs and other convenient places, ready for imme- 
diate use in case of necessity. It were well if modern duels 
ended as amicably. 

There were three or four garrisons, or block-houses in the 
town, to which the inhabitants might resort in case of danger, 
during the Indian hostilities excited by the French. One of 
these was at Mr. Robert Walker's, in the North part of the 
town, on the place of the late Mr. Jesse Walker. Another 
was on the place lately owned by Theodore Goffe, Esq. ; 
also, one on the Patten place, and still another, it is supposed, 
on the place of Mr. Josiah Walker. It was a time of danger, 
and the inhabitants were constantly on their guard, but the 
town was never attacked by hostile Indians. When at 
work, it is said they would keep one man posted as a 
sentinel, and if practicable, they would work but one day in 
the same field. Although the town escaped, yet individuals 
belonging to it were sometimes exposed. In one instance a 
man was killed. In 1745 James McQuade and John Burns 
went to Penacook, (Concord,) to purchase corn for their 
families, and had proceeded on their return home as far as 
Suncook, (Pembroke,) when they were fired upon by a party 
of Indians who lay in ambush awaiting their return. 
McQuade was shot dead, but Burns made his escape by 
running in a zigzag direction, which baffled the fire of the 
pursuers, and he arrived in safety to his family. It is related, 
in addition, that McQ,uade's mother, soon after, let one of the 
neighbors have some beans which were brought along in a 
bag, and a ragged bullet was found among them. 


There is a traditionary story of Mr. Robert Walker, that 
relates, he started one Sunday morning in good season, to go 
to Londonderry to meeting, and to see his intended, who 
resided there. As he left his garrison, on horseback, he 
discovered a trail of Indians in the dew, from behind the 
barn through the hemp-yard to the road. He kept a sharp 
look-out, and on coming near the river, he heard a cracking 
in the wood ; he kept the same pace till a turn in the road 
near by, when he put spurs to his horse, and heard no more 
of them. He supposed they were watching his movements, 
in order to waylay him. He came home another route 
through Litchfield. But we have been led forward by our 
notice of the Indians, a little too far in point of time. 


Before entering particularly upon this period, which has 
already been anticipated, some things having been mentioned 
that occurred prior to the settlement, it will not be out of 
place to give a copy of one or two documents found in the 
archives of the town. 

The first is a petition to the General Court of Massa- 
chusetts, for a grant to the Soldiers in the Narragansett War, 
and grant of the petition. 

" At a Great and General Court or Assembly, for his 
Majestie's Province of the Massachusetts Bay, begun and held 
at Boston, upon Wednesday, the Thirty-first of May, 1732, 
and continued by adjournment, to Wednesday, Fourth day 
of April, 1733, and then met. 

" April 26, 1733. 

"A Petition of a Committee for the Narragansett Soldiers, 
showing that there are the number of Eight Hundred and 
Forty Persons, entered as officers and soldiers in the late 
Narragansett War. Praying that there may be such an 
addition of Land granted to them, as may allow a Tract of 
six miles Square to each one hundred and twenty men so 

" In the House of Representatives, Read, and Ordered that 
the Prayer of the Petition be granted, and that Major 


Chandler, Mr. Edward Shove, Col. Thomas Tileston. Mr. 

John Hobson, and Mr. Samuel Chandler, (or any three of 

them,) be a Committee fully authorized and empowered to 

survey and lay out five more Tracts of Land for Townships, 

of the Contents of Six miles Square, each, in some of the 

unappropriated lands of this Province ; and that the said land, 

together with the two towns before granted, be granted and 

disposed of to the officers and soldiers or their lawful 

Representatives, as they are or have been allowed by this 

Court, being eight hundred and forty in number, in the 

whole, and in full satisfaction of the Grant formerly made 

them by the General Court, as a reward for their public 

service. And the Grantees shall be obliged to assemble 

within as short time as they can conveniently, not exceeding 

the space of two months, and proceed to the choice of 

Committees, respectively, to regulate each Propriety or 

Township, which is to be held and enjoyed by one hundred 

and twenty of the Grantees, each in equal Proportion, who 

shall pass such orders and rules as will effectually oblige 

them to settle Sixty families, at least, within each Township, 

with a learned, orthodox ministry, within the space of seven 

years of the date of this Grant. Provided, always, that if the 

said Grantees shall not effectually settle the said number of 

families in each Township, and also lay out a lot for the first 

settled minister, one for the ministry, and one for the school, 

in each of the said townships, they shall have no advantage 

of, but forfeit their respective grants, anything to the 

contrary contained notwithstanding. The Charge of the 

Survey to be paid by the Province. 

In Council read and concurd. 

Consented to, J. Belcher." 

u A True Copy of Record : 
Examined, Per 

Simon Frost, Dep. Secretary." 

"It is hereby Certified, that by an order of the Great and 
General Court, pass'd the eighteenth of April, 1734, Seven 
yearslfrom the first of June, 1 734, was allow'd the Narragan- 
set Claimants. 

Attest : Simon Frost, Dep. Sec'y." 

By referring to the Proprietors' Book of Records, it will 
be found the above conditions of the Grant were complied 


with, as respects provisions for the gospel, though a minister 
was not settled till after the act of incorporation. 

The following documents will not be without interest to 
those who have a taste for such investigations, especially as 
they bear on the history of the township. 

"Province of New Hampshire : 

" At a meeting of the Proprietors of the Lands purchased 
of John Tufton Mason, Esq., in the Province of New Hamp- 
shire, at the Dwelling-house of Sarah Priest, widow, in 
Portsmouth, in said Province, on the ninth day of November, 
174S, by adjournment : 

" Voted, — That the rights of the original Proprietors of 
Souhegan-East, otherwise called Narraganset, No. 5, be and 
hereby are confirmed to them, according as the Lots have 
been already surveyed and laid out, excepting and reserving 
only seventeen shares or Rights, as according to said laying 
out ; the particular rights or Shares so excepted and reserved, 
to be determined and ascertained hereafter; but that the 
particular rights and shares of Maj. Edward White, and the 
Rev'd Doctor Ebenezer Miller, be not among the excepted 
and reserved rights as aforesaid, but that their said rights and 
shares among said Proprietors as aforesaid, be hereby granted 
and confirmed to them, their heirs and assigns. 
Copy examined, 

Per George Jaffrey, Prop. CPk." 

The following paper, as explanatory of the last, may be 
introduced, though the date carries us beyond the present 

" Province of New Hampshire : 

" At a meeting of the Proprietors of the lands purchased 
of John Tufton Mason, Esq., in New Hampshire, held at 
Portsmouth, in said Province, on the seventh day of 
December, 1750 : 

" Voted, — That the proposed reserved seventeen shares in 
Souhegan-East, (so called,) otherwise called Narraganset, 
No. 5, be drawn for at this meeting, and that the particular 
home-lots as heretofore surveyed and laid out by the claimers 
under the Massachusetts Government, that shall be drawn by 
any particular person or. persons, shall be to the respective 
person by whom drawn, and to whom entered, to have and to 
hold the same in severalty, to them, their heirs and assigns 


respectively, forever. And that the other divisions in said 
Tract of land, as heretofore surveyed and laid out, as 
aforesaid, belonging unto the home-lots respectively, shall be 
to the said persons, respectively, who draw the said home- 
lots, to have and to hold the same, in severalty, to them, 
their heirs and assigns, forever, in the same manner, and 
upon the same conditions as they hold in severalty the sundry 
tracts or parcels of land voted to be held in severalty by a 
vote passed by said Proprietors at a meeting by them held on 
the 25th day of July, 1750." 

Pursuant to the above vote, the following draft of the 
said seventeen shares reserved in Souhegan-East, (so 
called,) otherwise called Narragansett, No. 5, were voted to 
be recorded in the following manner, as they were drawn at 
this meeting. 

Drawn to. Home-lots. 

" 1st, Theodore Atkinson, Esq., No. 39, on Merrymack. 

2d, Messrs. Meserve, Blanchard, Green and March, No. 61, 
on Merrymack. 

3d, John Mofflt, Esq., No. 89, on Merrymack. 

4th, John Kinge, No. 76, on Merrymack. 

5th, John Went worth, Jr., Esq., No. S3, on Merrymack. 

6th, George Jaffrey, Esq., No. 20, on Babosook. 

7th, Mark H. Wentworfh, Esq., No. 41, on Merrymack. 

8th, Thomas Parker, Esq., No. 95, on Merrymack. 

9th, John Ordiorne, Esq., No. 69, on Merrymack. 
10th, William Parker, Esq., No. 1, on Merrymack. 
11th, Mary Moor and Daniel Pierce, Esq., No. 79, on 

12th, Matthew Lacimon, Esq., No. 1, on Piscataquog. 
13th, Joshua Pierce, Esq., No 66, on Merrymack. 
14th, Samuel, Sally, and Clement March, Esq., No. 75, on 

15th, Thomas Wallingford, Esq., No. 17, on Babosook. 
16th, Richard Wibird, Esq., No. 31, on Merrimack. 
17th, Jno. Tomlinson, and John Tufton Mason, Esq., No. 
35, on Merrymack. 

A true Copy of record, 

as attested by, Geo. Jaffrey, Prop. CVk. 
Portsmouth, May 1st, 1796. 

Transcribed, June 15, 1796." 


It may, perhaps, seem to some readers superfluous to 
introduce papers of this kind, but it should be remembered 
that to the future antiquary or historian, they may have great 
value. The Proprietors' Book of records, preserved in the 
archives of this town, is becoming quite a relic of antiquity. 
It is bound in parchment, and is in a good state of preserva- 
tion. They held their meetings in Boston, at " Mr. Luke 
Vardy's," also, " at the house of Peletiah Glover, at the sign 
of the three horse-shoes, near the Common." 

One Vote of the Proprietors may be given, showing they 
had some regard for the religious welfare of their township : 
— u Feb. 15th, 1748. Voted, — That one third of the time, 
Preaching shall be to accommodate the inhabitants at the 
upper end of the town ; one other third part, at the lower end 
of the town ; the last third, about Strawberrie hill; — all in 
such houses as said committee shall think proper for each part 
of the inhabitants." — The committee referred to, were some 
of the settlers of the place. 

We now approach the period of the first settlement of the 
town. The country was then in a wilderness state, and it 
required men of strong arms and stout hearts to be pioneers 
in such an enterprise. Wild beasts roamed where now 
are cultivated farms and smiling orchards. The following 
incident, among others, has been handed down from those 
early times. One day, Robert Walker and Matthew Patten 
went out in the month of March, to hunt for bears, near 
Uncanoonuck hills. Finding none, they concluded to return 
home, and as they were retracing their steps, they came 
across a catamount track. The track being along their way, 
they followed it on, till it turned off, and they followed it no 
further. Just then Walker's dog took the track, and they 
had not gone far before they heard the dog bark ; Walker 
says, " There, my dog has treed the vermin, and if I don't 
go and shoot him, he will kill my dog." Patten tried to 
persuade him off, but in vain. He found the catamount, 
crouched on the limb of a tree, swinging his tail backward 
and forward, evidently meditating a spring upon the dog. 
He levelled his gun and fired ; the ball took effect just below 
the ear, broke his neck, and he fell dead. It was said the tail 
was long enough to girt and tie in a bow-knot around the 
body. Robert Walker was said to be a very stout, robust 
man, as appears from the following circumstance that is related. 
He was once at Amoskeag Falls, when a man and his wife 
undertook to cross over from Derryfield side. The man, not 


being a good oarsman, went down stream, the canoe ran on 
a rock and stuck fast, which prevented them from going over 
the falls. There they were, within sight of a number of 
persons, but no one ready to give assistance. At length, 
Walker stripped himself, swam to the rock, placed the canoe 
bows up stream, seated the man and woman near the middle 
of the canoe, and then with almost superhuman strength 
shoved the canoe off, springing into it at the same time, and 
taking his paddle brought them safe to the shore, to the great 
joy of themselves and all the spectators. This Robert 
Walker came from his Uncle Stark's, (father of Gen. John 
Stark,) in Londonderry, where he had been living, and joined 
his brother James, in his camp on the bank of the Merrimack, 
making turpentine and cultivating corn in summer, and 
hunting wild game in winter. They soon came over this 
side the river ; James to what is now the farm of Lieut. 
Josiah Walker, and Robert to the place where the late Mr. 
Jesse Walker lived and died. 

The first settlement of the township was in 1737. As 
early as the winter of 1735, a man by the name of Sebbins,* 
came from Braintree, Massachusetts, and spent the winter in 
what was then Souhegan-East. He occupied himself in 
making shingles, and the spot he selected for this purpose, 
was South of the old grave-yard, between that and Sebbins' 
pond, on the North line of a piece of land that was owned by 
the late Isaac Atwood. In the spring of the year, he drew 
his shingles to Merrimack River, about a mile and a half, on 
a hand-sled, and rafted them to Pawtucket Falls, now 
•Lowell. The pond already noticed, and a large tract of land 
around the same, still goes by his name. 

In the fall of 1737, the first permanent settlement was 
made by Robert and James Walker, brothers; and in the 
following spring, by Matthew and Samuel Patten, brothers, 
and sons of John Patten ; and soon after by many others. 
The Pattens lived in the same hut with the Walkers, until 
they built one of their own, near where Joseph Patten used 
to live. They commenced their first labors near the bank of 
the Merrimack, on a piece of ground known as Patten's field, 
about forty rods North of Josiah Walker's barn. The 
Walkers were immediately from Londonderry, N. H. The 
Pattens never lived in Londonderry, though they belonged to 

* This name, Sebbins, or Sibbins, is spelt according to the pronunciation, 
and may be a corruption of the real name. 


the company ; they were immediately from Dunstable. The 
father, John Patten, with his two sons, Matthew and Samuel 
landed at Boston, stopping there but a short time ; thence 
they came to Chelmsford, and thence to Dunstable, where 
he stayed till he came to Bedford. The second piece of land 
cleared, was on the Joseph Patten place, the field South of 
the first Pound, where the noted old high and flat granite 
stone now stands. 

With few exceptions, the early inhabitants of the town 
were from the North of Ireland, or from the then infant 
settlement of Londonderry, N. H., to which they had 
recently emigrated from Ireland. Their ancestors were of 
Scotch origin. About the middle of the 17th century, they 
went in considerable numbers from Argyleshire, in the West 
of Scotland, to the counties of Londonderry and Antrim in 
the North of Ireland, from which in 1718, a great emigration 
took place to this country. Some arrived at Boston, and 
some at Casco Bay, near Portland, which last were the 
settlers of Londonderry. Many towns in this vicinity were 
settled from this colony ; Windham, Chester, Litchfield, 
Manchester, Bedford, Goffstown, New Boston, Antrim, Peter- 
borough and Acworth, derived from Londonderry a consid- 
erable proportion of their first inhabitants. 

"Many of their descendants," says Rev. Dr. Whiton, in 
his History of the State, "have risen to high respectability ; 
among whom are numbered four Governors of New Hamp- 
shire ; one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence ; 
several distinguished officers in the Revolutionary War and 
in the last War with Great Britain, including Stark, Reid, 
Miller and McNeil ; a President of Bowdoin College, some 
members of Congress, and several distinguished ministers of 
the Gospel." 

President Everett, in his life of Gen. Stark, thus notices 
the colony, — "These emigrants were descended from the 
Scotch Presbyterians, who in the reign of James, were estab- 
lished in Ireland, but who professing with national tenacity a 
religious belief, neither in accordance with the popular faith 
in Ireland, nor with that of its English masters, and disliking 
the institutions of tithe and rent, determined to seek a 
settlement in America. The first party came over in 1718, 
and led the way in a settlement on Merrimack River. They 
were shortly succeeded by a large number of their country- 
men, who brought with them the art of weaving linen, and 
first introduced the culture of the potatoe into this part of 


America, and furnished from their families, a large number of 
the pioneers of civilization in New Hampshire, Vermont, and 
Maine j and some of the most useful and distinguished 
citizens of all these states." These quotations will not, it is 
hoped, be thought superfluous, when it is considered how 
large a proportion of the early inhabitants of the town were 
of Scottish origin. They were, as they are justly represented 
in the address of Col. Barnes, a well-principled, frugal, hardy, 
and industrious people, who brought with them a sound 
attachment to religious institutions. " And it is interesting 
to notice the similarity between the pilgrims of Plymouth, 
and the emigrants from the North of Ireland, as respects the 
motives which led them to emigrate. It was no worldly 
ambition, it was no unhallowed thirst of gain, that in either 
case appears to have led these hardy men to leave the com- 
forts and endearments of their native land, and come to this 
western wilderness. It was, we may believe, in both cases, 
for the enjoyment of the rights of conscience and religious 
privileges, that they came across the Atlantic, and settled 
down in these forests." — [Historical Sketch of Bedford, by 
Rev. Thomas Savage. — 1840.] 

A few years after the first settlement, the inhabitants 
petitioned to be incorporated, and in 1750, the town, which 
had been called Souhegan-East, or Narragansett, No. 5, was 
incorporated under its present name, and within its present 
limits, its territory originally extending South, to Souhegan 
River. What circumstance led to the choice of Bedford, as 
the name, is not certain. It has been suggested, with 
probability, it might have been in compliment to the Duke 
of Bedford, who corresponded with Benning Wentworth, 
Esq., Governor of the Province at the time of the act of 


April 11, 1748. —Gov. Wentworth informed the Council 
of " the situation of a number of persons, inhabiting a place 
called Souhegan-East, within this Province, that were with- 
out any township or District, and had not the privilege of a 
town in choosing officers for regulating their affairs, such as 
raising money for the ministry," &c. 

" Upon which, his Excellency, with the advice of the 
Council, was pleased to order that the above-mentioned 


persons, living at s'd place, be and hereby are empowered to 
call meetings of the s'd inhabitants, at which meeting they 
may, by virtue hereof, transact such matters and things as 
are usually done at town or Parish meetings within this 
Province, such as choosing officers, raising money for paying 
such charges of the s'd inhabitants, as shall be voted by a 
majority present at any such meeting. Provided, never- 
theless, that nothing herein contained, shall be construed, 
deemed, or taken as a grant of the land, or Quieting any 
possession. And that this order may be rendered beneficial 
to the s'd inhabitants, tis further ordered, that Capt. John 
Gone, Jun'r, call the first meeting, by a written notification, 
posted up at a public place amongst the inhabitants, fifteen 
days before the time of the s'd meeting, in which notification 
the matters to be transacted are to be mentioned ; and after 
that, the Selectmen may call meetings, and are to follow the 
rules in so doing, that are prescribed by law, for Town and 
Parish meetings. This Vote to continue and be in force till 
some further order thereon, and no longer." 


"At a Council holden at Portsmouth according to his 
Excellency's Summons, on Fryday, May the 18th, 1750: — 
Present : — Ellis Huske, Theodore Atkinson, Richard Wi- 
bird, Samuel Smith, John Downing, Samuel Solley, and 
Sampson SheafFe, Esquires : — A petition signed Samuel 
Miller, William Moore, and others, presented by John Goffe, 
Esq., and Mr. Samuel Patten, praying for a charter of Incor- 
poration of the inhabitants of a place called Souhegan-East, 
in this Province, being read, and Joseph Blanchard, Esq., in 
behalf of the town of Merrimack, also at the same time 
appearing, and the parties being heard on the said Petition, 
and agreeing where the line should run, in case his Excellency, 
with the advice of the Council, should think proper to grant 
the Petitioners a Charter of Incorporation. Mr. Gone and 
Patten, upon being asked, declared that the sole end proposed 
by the petitioners, was to be incorporated with privileges as- 
other towns, by law, have in this Province. 

" Upon which the Council did unanimously advise that 
his Excellency grant a Charter of Incorporation, as usual in 
such cases." 


The following is a copy of the Petition before mentioned. 


" To his Excellency, Benning Wentworth, Esq., Governor and 
Commander-in-Chief of his Majesty's Province of New 
Hampshire, and to the Honorable, his Majesty's Council, 
assembled at Portsmouth, May 10, 1750. 

" The humble Petition of the subscribers, inhabitants of 
Souhegan-East, so-called, Sheweth, That your Petitioners 
are major part of said Souhegan ; that your petitioners, as to 
our particular persuasion in Christianity are generally of the 
Presbyterian denomination : that your petitioners, through a 
variety of causes, having been long destitute of the gospel, 
are now desirous of taking the proper steps in order to have 
it settled among us in that way of discipline which we judge 
to tend most to our edification ; that your petitioners, not 
being incorporated by civil authority, are in no capacity to 
raise those sums of money, which may be needful in order 
to our proceeding in the above important affair. May it 
therefore please your Excellency, and Honors, to take the case 
of your petitioners under consideration, and to incorporate us 
into a town or district, or in case any part of our inhabitants 
should be taken off by any neighboring district, to grant that 
those of our persuasion, who are desirous of adhering to us 
may be excused from supporting any other parish charge, than 
where they conscientiously adhere, we desiring the same 
liberty to those within our bounds, if any there be, and your 
petitioners shall ever pray, &c. 

" Samuel Miller, John McLaughlin, 

William Moor, William Kennedy, 

John Riddell, Fergus Kennedy, 

Thomas Vickere, John Burns, 

Matthew Little, Gerard Rowen, 

James Moor, John McQuige, 

John Tom, Patrick Taggart, 

James Kennedy, John Goffe, 

Robert Gilmoor, John Orr, 

Richard McAllister, John Moorehead, 

James Walker, James Little, 

John Bell, Robert Gilmoor, Senior, 

John McLaughlin, Senior, David Thompson, 

Thomas Chandler, James McKnight, 

John McDugle, Hugh Riddell, 

Samuel Patten, Daniel Moor, 

Alexander Walker, John Clark, 

Gan Riddell, Robert Walker, 

Benjamin Smith, Matthew Patten. 


These are to certify, that we, the above subscribers, do 
commission John Goffe, Esq., and Mr. Samuel Patten, to 
present this petition, in order to obtain incorporation for us, 
according to their instructions from us, the subscribers. 

James Little, Clerk." 
[Dated,] May 10, 1750. 

" Province of New Hampshire. 

u George the Second, by the Grace of God, of Great Brittain, 
France, and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, &c. 

r j ~ -] To all to whom these Presents shall Come, 

*■ " '-' Greeting : 

" Whereas, Our Loyal Subjicks, Inhabitants of a Tract of 
Land, within Our Province of New Hampshire, aforesaid, 
Lying At or near A Place called Sow-Hegon, on the West 
side of the River Merrimack, Have Humbly Petitioned and 
Requested to Us, That they may be Encted and Incorporated 
into A Township, and Infranchized with the same Powers 
and Privileges which other Towns, within Our sd Province, 
by Law Have and Enjoy, and it appearing to Us, to be Con- 
ducive to the General good of Our said Province, as well as 
of the Inhabitants in Particular, By maintaining good Order, 
and Encouraging the Culture of the Land, that the same 
should be done, Know Ye, Therefore, That We, of our 
Especial Grace, certain Knowledge, and for the Encourage- 
ment and Promoting the good Purposes and Ends aforesaid, 
By and with the Advice of Our Trusty and well beloved 
Benning Wentworth, Esq., Our Governour and Commander 
In Chief, And of Our Council for sd Province of New 
Hampshire, Have Encted and Ordained, And by these Pres- 
ents, for Us, Our Heirs and Successors, Do will and Ordain 
that The Inhabitants of a Tract of Land, aforesaid, Or that 
shall Inhabit and Improve thereon hereafter, Butted and 
Bounded, as follows, (Viz :) Beginning at a place three Miles 
North from the Bridge over Sow-Hegon River, at John 
Chamberlain's House, and thence to Run East, by the Needle, 
to Merrimack River, to a Stake and Stones, and to extend 
that Line West, until it Intersect a Line Known by the name 
of the West Line of Sow-Hegon East, and from thence to 
Run North, Two Degrees West, about three Miles and an 


half to a Beach Tree, marked, called Sow-Hegon West, 
North East corner, thence South, Eighty Eight degrees West, 
by an old Line of marked Trees to a Chestnut Tree, marked, 
from thence North. Two Degrees West, Two miles, to an 
Hemlock Tree, marked, called the North West Corner of said 
Sow-Hegon East, thence East, by the Needle to Merrimack 
River, to a Stake and Stones, thence Southerly, as Merrimac 
River runs, to the Stake and Stones first mentioned. And 
by these Presents, are Declared and ordained to be a Town 
Corporate, and are hereby Encted and Incorporated into a 
Body Pollitick and a Corporation, to have Continuance forev- 
er, by the Name of Bedford, with all the Powers and Author- 
ities, Priviledges, Immunities, and Infranchizes, to them the 
said Inhabitants, and their Successors for Ever, Always 
reserving to us, Our Heirs and Successors, All White Pine 
Trees growing and being, Or that shall hereafter Grow and be, 
on the sd Tract of Land, fit for the Use of Our Royal Navy, 
reserving also the power Of dividing the sd Town, to Us, 
Our Heirs and Successors, when it shall appear Necessary 
and Convenient for the Benefit of the Inhabitants thereof. 
It is to be understood, and is accordingly Hereby Declared, 
that the private Property of the Soil is in no manner of way 
to be affected by this Charter. And as the several Towns, 
within Our said Province of New Hampshire, are by the 
Laws thereof, Enabled and Authorized to Assemble, and by 
the Majority of Votes to Choose all such Officers as are 
mentioned In the said Laws, We do by these Presents, Nom- 
inate and Appoint John Goffe, Esq., to Call the first Meeting 
of the said Inhabitants, to be held within the sd Town, 
at any time within thirty days from the Date hereof, Giving 
Legal Notice of the Time, Place and design of Holding such 
Meeting ; After which, the Annual Meeting in sd Town, 
shall be held for the Choice of Town Officers, &c, for ever, 
on the last Wednesday in March, annually. 

" In Testimony Whereof, We have caused the Seal of Our 
sd Province to be hereunto affixed. Witness, Benning 
Wentworth, Esq., Our Governour and Commander In Chief 
of Our sd Province, the nineteenth Day of May, In the 
Year of Our Lord Christ, One thousand Seven hundred and 
Fifty. B. Wentworth. 

" By His Excellency's Command, 
with Advice of Council. 

Theodore Atkinson, Secretary." 


" Prov. of N. Hamps. 

" Entered and recorded in the book for Charters, the 21st 
day of May, 1750. 

Per Theodore Atkinson, Secretary." 

" George, The Second, By the Grace of God, of Great 
Britain, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, &c. 

P j ^ i To all to whom these Presents shall come, 
■- '■• Greeting : — 

" Whereas, by our Charter, bearing Date the second Day of 
April, in the year of our Lord Christ, one Thousand seven 
Hundred and Forty-six, and in the nineteenth year of his 
Present Majesty's Reign, We did Incorporate a Certain Town 
in our said Province, by the Name of Merrymac, by such 
Boundaries, with such Priviledges, and under such Limita- 
tions, as are Expressed in the said Charter, the Quantity of 
Land Therein being About Eight Thousand Acres. And 
Whereas, the Inhabitants Thereof have Lately represented to 
Us, that the said Land is very mean and ordinary, and 
Therefore Incapable of supporting such a number of Inhabi- 
tants, as will enable them to support the Charge of a Town, 
Without a Farther Addition of Land and Inhabitants. 
Wherefore, they Humbly Pray that an addition may be made 
to the Town of Merrymac, on the northerly side Thereof, of 
a Tract of Land of about three miles in Breadth, and about 
four miles aud an half in Length, which being tho't for the 
benefit of our said subjects, and for the Mutual advantage 
of The Whole Inhabitants, We Do by These Presents, By 
and with the advice of our Trusty and well Beloved Ben- 
ning Went worth, Esq., our Governor and Commander-in- 
ChiefT and of our Council for said Province of New 
Hampshire, Will and ordain, that a Certain Tract of Land, 
in Breadth about three miles, and in Length about four 
miles and an half, Bounded as follows, (Viz :) Beginning 
at a Place three miles North of the Bridge over Souhegan 
River, at John Chamberlin's house, and from Thence to Run 
East by the needle to Merrymac River, and to extend that 
Line West, from the place Three miles north from the Bridge 
aforesaid, until it intersects a line on a point north by the 


needle, from the Northwest Corner Bound of the Town of 
Merrymac, Therefore, Incorporated to Bound Westerly on 
that line, and on Merrimac River Easterly, and on Souhegan 
River southerly, shall, and hereby is, annexed to, and united 
with the said Town of Merrymac, with all the Inhabitants 
that are or shall be thereon, and that the same shall be, and 
hereby is, Incorporated with the said Town, with the respec- 
tive Inhabitants that are, or shall be, on each of the 
afors'd Parcells of land, and is hereby Declared to be one 
Intire Corporation or Body Politick, by the Name of Merry- 
mac, to Go in succession forever, with all the Priviliges, 
Powers, Franchezes and Imunities that any other Town 
Within this Province, has, holds, or enjoys by Law, Except- 
ing as hereafter Excepted : 

" To Have and to Hold to the sd Inhabitants, and to their 
successors, forever, only heceby Reserving All White pine 
trees that are Growing, or shall hereafter Grow thereon, to 
his Majesty's use ; Reserving, also, the Power of Dividing 
the sd Town, when it shall be tho't necessary, to us or to 
our successors, forever, In Testimony Wherof, We Have 
caus'd the Seal of our said Province to be hereunto Affixed. 
Witness, Benning Wentworth, Esq., our Governor and Com- 
mander-in-Chief of our said Province, the first day of June, 
and the twenty-third year of His Majesty's Reign, Anno 
Domini, one Thousand seven Hundred and fifty. 

B. Wentworth. 
" By His Excellency's Command, 
with the advice of the Council, 

Theodore Atkinson, Secretary." 

cc Province of New Hampshire. 

" Entered and Recorded in the book of Charters, the 5th 
day of June, 1750. 

Theodore Atkinson, Secretary." 

" Province of New Hampshire. 

" By the Hon. John Wentworth, Esqr., Surveyor General of 
all and singular. His Majesty's Woods, within all and every 
His Majesty's Colonies and Plantations on the Continent of 


rr n n " To Samuel Blodget, of Goffstown, in the said 

\Li. ISA . 

1 J province, Esq. : 

11 Whereas, His Majesty, by his royal Commission, dated 
the 16th day of July, 1766, hath been graciously pleased to 
appoint me Surveyor General of all his Majesty's woods in 
North America, with power to appoint deputies and under 
officers to carry the said service effectually into execution : 

" I do, therefore, by virtue of Authority vested in me by said 
commission, appoint and depute you, the said Samuel Blod- 
get, to be one of my assistant deputies, to preserve the King's 
woods from trespass or waste, and to put in execution all the 
acts of Parliament, and Statutes enacted for that purpose, and 
to do and perform all acts and things whatsoever, to the said 
office appertaining, in the following Districts, viz : — Goffs- 
town, Bedford, Weare, Pembroke, Allenstown, Bow, pun- 
barton, Merrimac, Amherst, Litchfield, Chester, Concord, 
Boscawen, Hopkinton, New Boston, Sanbornton, New Salis- 
bury, Canterbury, Methuen, Wilton, Peterborough, Temple, 
Plymouth, New Chester, Alexandria, New Britain, Meredith, 
Lyndborough, Henneker, New Amesbury and Cambden, all 
in the aforesaid Province ; and also, Haverhill, Andover, 
Dracut, Chelmsford and Ipswich, in the Province of Mass. 
Bay ; Hereby authorising and requiring you, the said Sam. 
Blodget, to forbid and prevent, by all lawful means, the 
violation of said acts, and to seize and Mark for his Majesty's 
use, all pine timber that you may find cut and hauled from 
the King's woods, without license first had and obtained 
from me, and all offenders as aforesaid, to prosecute and 
punish, as to law and justice appertains. And you, the said 
Sam. Blodget, are hereby required to return to me an exact 
account of your proceedings herein, quarterly, from this date, 
or oftener, if occasion shall require, and for your encourage- 
ment to exert yourself with diligence and fidelity in the 
duties of the said office, you will receive such compensation 
for your services as your merit shall appear to me to deserve, 
out of the fines and forfeitures only, that may acrue or be 
levied by your means. This warrant to be in force during 
pleasure only. Given under my hand and seal, at Ports- 
mouth, the 11th day of February, 1772. 

J. Wentworth. 

" Samuel Blodgett, Esq. : 

To be Assistant Deputy Surveyor of the woods." 



The History of this town will show, that the Inhabitants 
have not been deficient in public spirit, but have exhibited 
a readiness to make sacrifices for the welfare of our Country, 
whenever the exigence of the times demanded. As far back 
as the French War, in 1756, there were persons belonging to 
this town in the service of their country. Col. John Gone 
was in command of our forces at one period, — and the fol- 
lowing are names of private individuals, who engaged in that 
war : — William McDougal, George Orr, Robert Holmes, 
Thomas McLauglin, Samuel Patterson, James Patterson, 
Nathaniel Patterson, John Orr, and John Moor ; the last of 
whom was taken prisoner at Fort William Henry, and carried 
to France, from thence to England, whence he returned home. 

In 1760, a regiment consisting of eight hundred men, was 
raised by the Province of New Hampshire, to join the 
expedition under Gen. Amherst, against Canada. This 
regiment was under the command of Col. John GofTe, of 
Bedford, and in fact, was made up in a great measure, of men 
from the neighboring towns in Hillsborough and Rocking- 
ham Counties. Col. Gone had his rendezvous at " Lytch- 
field," then the important town of Hillsborough County. 

The 10th of May, 1760, Gov. Wentworth summoned his 
Council and informed them that the Regiment was " to 
march without loss of time, from Lytchfield to Charlestown, 
on Connecticut river, which being through an unsettled 
country and uncertain whether provisions could be got there, 
he thought it necessary to send provisions to Lytchfield to 
supply them from thence to Charlestown ; and asked the 
Councils advice thereon, as also about a supply of arms, &c." 

The Council advise the Governor that he " give orders 
for so much provision as will be necessary to victual the 
regiment from Lytchfield to Charlestown and cause the same 
to be transported to Lytchfield." They also advise, " that 
a sufficient number of arms be supplied the men, to guard 
the regiment on their way to Crown Point." 

The provisions were duly provided, and Col. GofTe marched 
with his regiment to Charlestown. From thence, with a 
vast deal of labor, a road was cut by the troops through the 
wilderness, in the direction of Crown Point, for the distance 
of twenty-six miles, and so well made, that the provisions 



of the regiment passed over it in carts without difficulty. 
It is needless to remark, that such troops under such a leader, 
were equal to any emergency, and rendered most essential 
service in the campaign. 

Capt. James Walker was engaged in this war, from 1760 
to 1763, as a sutler, under Col. John Goffe, his father-in-law. 
In 1764, he was appointed Captain of a troop of horse, by 
Governor Went worth ; the commission, dated March 4th, 1764, 
and signed by Theodore Atkinson, Jr., Secretary, and B. 
Went worth, Gov., is in town, in a good state of preservation. 

We will here insert a few short extracts from Capt. James 
Walker's Journal, while Sutler in the French War. 

11 June 16, 1760. I set out for Albany from No. 4, but 
was detained, and I got to Mr. Grime's, in Swansea, and lodged 
there all night, and it rained very hard, and the 18th, I arrived 
at Northfield, and lodged there all night, and the next day to 
North Hampton, and lodged at Capt. Lyman's. The 20th, I 
arrived at Westfield, to Capt. Clayer, and 21st June, I got to 
Shattucks, and I went to breakfast at Sheffield. I got to 
Kinderhook, and lodged there all night. June 23, I arrived 
at Albany. June 24, came to Mr. Fisher's to lodge. It 
rained all that week, and on the Sabbath, 29th, it rained very 
hard in the morning, and cleared off very pleasant." 

" 1760, July 4. I was at Mr. New-kirk's house, in the 
Mohawk Country, and returned to Albany the 6th, (Sabbath,) 
and I paid three dollars for a horse to ride to Mr. New-kirk's. 
July 10, Thursday, Mr. Fisher and I sent one team loaded, 
to Lake George, with sugar, cheese, and tobacco, and I was 
very much out of order all that day with the head-ache, and 
all my bones and flesh was sore, and I was so weak that I 
could hardly walk the street, and so I remained till the 13th. 
(Sabbath) I felt some better. July 19, Saturday, we sent 
one cart away, loaded with three barrels of rum, and one 
barrel of shrub, and one barrel of spirits, and two boxes of 
chocolate, and one box of soap." 

" July 22. Mr. Fisher and I lodged at Saratoga all night 
going to the Lake. July 23, we got to Lake George, to Mr. 
Cooper's, where we lodged all night." 

" July 24. I set out to go to Crown Point, and tarried all 
night on the Lake, and got to Ticonderoga the next morning, 
one o'clock. And 25th, I got to Crown Point and lodged 
all night with Capt. Rogers ; and Saturday 26th, it rained, 
and the 28th, I went to Col.'Haviland, and got a pass to go to 
Albany, this was a Monday." 


" Tuesday^. I saw a pickerel that was four feet and five 
inches long, that was found dead in the Lake." 

" July 31, 1760. The Regiment arrived at Crown Point, 
and 4th of August the Post mustered, and this was a Monday. 
August 8, I got to Lake George, coming back to Albany, 
this was a Friday, to get stores for the Regiment." 

He got back to the army with his stores and proceeds : — 

" August 30. We pitched our tent and got our stores from 
the Landing ; I went to the Mills to bring more stores and was 
obliged to stay the 31st day, waiting for the ' Snowshoe,' 
this was a Saturday." 

" September 2, 1760. A Schooner and Sloop came up to 
Crown Point, with the French prisoners and wounded men. 
Friday, 5th September, was a very pleasant day. 7th 
September, Sabbath. 9th, Moon changes at 8 o'clock, 

" September 10, 1760. Was Wednesday, and we were all 
waiting for News from the Army, but could hear none, 
Monday the 8th day, Montreal was surrendered to our arms, 
and we received the news the 12th day, which was very 
agreeable to us all." 


In the Revolutionary War, Bedford furnished a large 
number of citizens, who united in opposing the oppression of 
Great Britain, and in common with their fellow-citizens, 
were zealous in sharing the danger and hardships to which 
they were exposed. Their zeal and patriotism were mani- 
fested by a ready compliance with the requisitions of Congress, 
and the orders of the Provincial Convention. A few extracts 
from the Town Records, will represent the spirit of that day, 
and the excitement of that trying period : — 

January 16, 1775. " Voted, — To adopt the measures of 
the Continential Congress." 

" Voted, — Capt. Samuel Patten, Capt. Daniel Moor, and 
Lieut. Samuel Vose, be a Committee to carry said measures 
into execution." 

" Voted, — Mr. James Martin, be appointed Deputy, in 
behalf of the town, to attend the Provincial Congress, to be 


held at Exter, on Wedneseay 25th inst., for the choice of a 
Delegate to represent their province at the Continental 
Congress, proposed to be held at Philadelphia, Tuesday, 10th 
of May next." 

" Voted, — That we will bear our proportion, with the other 
towns in the Province, for sending Delegates to Philadelphia, 
10th of May next, if our grievances are not removed before 
that time." 

" Voted, — That James Martin, have one dollar per day, 
for his time and expenses, while he is our Deputy at Exeter, 
on the present occasion." 

" April 20, 1775. 

" To the Selectmen of Bedford. 

"Gentlemen, — This moment, the melancholy intelligence 
has been received of hostilities being commenced between 
the troops, under Gen. Gage, and onr brethren of Massachu- 
setts Bay. The importance of exerting ourselves at this 
critical moment has caused the Provincial Committee to meet 
at Exeter, and you are requested, instantly, to choose and 
hasten forward, there, a Delegate or Delegates, to join in the 
Committee and aid them in consulting measures for our 

" In great haste, and by order of the Committee, 
Your Humble Servant, 

J. Wentworth." 

" April 25, 1775. Voted, — Our Selectmen, inspect the 
families of our men that are gone to the army, and if they 
find any in want, to provide what is necessary for them, at 
the town cost." 

"November 12, 1776. Voted, — That the town pay ten 
dollars to each man that went to Ticonderoga, on the town's 
account, in July last, and seven dollars for a drum." 

" Voted, — To dismiss the soldiers that went out of this 
town, that served in the Continental army in the year 1775 7 
of their poll tax." 

" Voted, — Wiseman Clagget, Esq., of Litchfield, to rep- 
resent the towns of Bedford and Merrimack, in General 
Assembly, now sitting at Exeter, for the year 1777, agreeable 
to a precept to us directed." 


u March 26, 1777. Voted, — Thomas Boies, James Vose, 
John Martin, Lieut. John Orr, and John Aiken, be a Com- 
mittee of safety." 

" April 10, 1777. Voted, — To raise eighty dollars, to 
give as a bounty to each soldier that shall enlist in this town 
for the Continental army." 

" May 19, 1777. Voted, — That those men that went on 
behalf of the town, from Winter-hill to New York, and thence 
to Canada, and thence back to Ticonderoga, be free from their 
poll-rate for 1777." 

"June 15, 1778. Voted, — The Selectmen of Bedford 
shall supply the soldier's wives with the necessaries of life, 
at the rated prices, and that the town pay the overplus." 

"February 18, 1779. Voted, — The Selectmen of this 
town stand ready to supply Mr. Robert Morrill's wife with 
the necessaries of life, at the stated prices, if she come to 
this town, during her stay in the same, and his stay in the 
Continental army, for the town of Bedford, unless the Con- 
tinental Congress make provision in such case." 

The following votes, show the great depreciation of paper 
money at that time. 

" September 17, 1779. Voted, — -To raise three hundred 
pounds lawful money to purchase grain for Levi Whitman's 

"September 9, 1780. Raised ten thousand seven hundred 
pounds, lawful money, to purchase beef for the army." 

"November 15, 1780. Voted,— To allow Fifty dollars 
per bushel for Indian Corn." 

"May 24, 1781. Voted, — To raise thirteen thousand 
five hundred pounds, L. M., in Continental bills, to purchase 
beef for the support of the army the present year." 

" May 3, 1783. Voted, — The Constable be directed to 
receive One Spanish Dollar, in lieu of one hundred and sixty 
dollars in Continental bills." 

We only add the following to the votes, relating to this 
interesting period. 

"July 10, 1783. Voted, — We, will not proceed to busi- 
ness, by reason of it being a day of rejoicing on account of 
the Peace." 

Some extracts from the Journal of Hon. Matthew Patten, 
are here introduced, illustrative of this part of our history. 


" April 20, 1775. I received the melancholy news, in the 
morning, that Gen. Gage's troops had fired on our country- 
men at Concord, and had killed a large number of them. 
Our town was notified last night. We generally met at the 
meeting-house, about 9 o'clock, and twenty of our men went 
directly off for our army, from the meeting, to assist them. 
And our son John came home from Pawtucket, and intend- 
ing to set off for our army to»morrow morning, and our girls 
set up all night baking bread and fixing things for him and 
John Dobbin." John Dobbin was Mr. Patten's hired man* 

" 21. Our John and John Dobbin, and my brother Sam- 
uel's two oldest sons, set off and joined Derryfield men, and 
about six from Goffstown, and two or three more from this 
town, under the command of Capt. John Moor of Derryfield. 
They amounted in number to 45 in all. Suncook men and 
two or three others that joined them, marched on in about an 
hour after ; they amounted to 35. There was nine men 
went along after, belonging to Pennykook or thereabouts." 

" 22. I was awaked in the morning by Mr. Chandler's 
man, with a letter from the Committee of the Provincial 
Congress, for calling another Congress of the Province imme- 
diately. And I went with it as fast as I could, to John Bell's, 
but he had gone to the army, and both the other Selectmen." 

" 24. I went and notified on the River Row, to meet at 
the meeting-house, on our public distress. And I went to 
Col. John Goffe, to ask his advice, and we met toward 
evening, and acted on what we thought necessary." 

"25. I went at the service of the town, to Col. Goffe, and 
Merrill, at MacGregor's, and cautioned them to take special 
care of strangers, and persons suspected of being tories, 
crossing the river by ferries ; to examine and search, if they 
judged needful. And I got nine flints from Mr. MacGregor, 
for which I paid him lis. 8d. old tenor." 

* January 20, 1850. Dr. Woodbury called on two daughters of Matthew 
Patten, Polly and Sarah Patten, and asked them if they could remember 
anything that took place when they first heard of the battle of Lexington, 1775. 
•' yes, remember very well, never shall forget. Brother John came home 
that night, and we sat up all night, baking bread and making small clothes 
for brother John and John Dobbin, who went away early in the morning. The 
soldiers kept coming along, and we kept giving the bread and meat, and 
when night came, we had not a morsel left." " At the battle of Bunker Hill 
we could hear the guns very distinctly." [Polly lately deceased, aged 89, 
Sarah, still survives.] — Ed. 



" July 23, 1777. The evacuation of Ticonderoga. I paid 
advanced wages. And this day I went to New Boston, to 
Capt. McGaw's and mustered 52 men for Col. Moor. They 
were from Lyndeborough, New Boston, Francestown, 
Deering and Antrim. My expenses was Is. 6d. at McGaw's. 
I went to Hugh Gregg's and lodged all night." 

The following are the names of those revolutionary 
soldiers who went from this town, to serve their country in 
the glorious struggle for independence : — 

Col. Daniel Moor, 

Maj. John Goffe, 

Capt. James Aiken, 

Capt. Thomas McLaughlin. 

Lieut. John Patten, 

John Patten, jr., 

Samuel Patten, 

James Patten, 

Robert Patten, 

Hugh Campbell, 

John Gault, 

Isaac Riddle, 

David Riddle, 

John Riddle, 

Amos Martin, 

James Martin, 

George Gault, 

Stephen Goffe, (lost at sea.) 

Hugh Thornton, (died in serv.) 
-Primas Chandler, (taken at the 
Cedars and never after heard 

Samuel Barr, 

John Callahan, (killed.) 

James Moor, 

Robert Comewell, 

John Caldwell, 

James Grear, 

Jonas Cutting, 

William Parker, 

John Kellen, 

John McAllister, 

Barnet McCain, 

John Griffin, 

Luke Eagan, 

Solomon Kemp, (killed.) 

John O'Neil, 

Jonathan Dorr, (killed.) 

George Hogg, 

John Gardner. 

Emigrant Chubuck, 

Samuel Fugard, 

William Newman, 
■Thomas McClary, 

Nathaniel Spofford, 

Robert Devvrumple, (killed.) 

Patrick Larkin, 

William Houston, 

Hugh Jameson, 

Whitfield Gilmon, 

John Bell, 

James Houston, 

Valentine Sullivan, (taken in the 
retreat from Canada ; died a 

William Kerr, jr., 

David Gregore, 

George Orr, 

John Ross, 

James Steel, 

Stephen Mack, 

Robert Morrill, 

Josiah Turrill, 

Patrick 0' Murphy, 

Patrick O'Fling, 

Calvin Johnson, (died in service.) 

Hugh Matthews, 

Joseph Matthews, 

Thomas Matthews, 

William Caldwell, 

John Dobbin, 

John Boies, (taken prisoner and 
carried to Limerick, Ireland, 
thence to Mill prison, England. 

Josiah Gordon, 

Phineas Aiken, 

John Manahan, 

Thomas Lancy, 

William Goffe, (killed.) 

William Barnet, (died in service.) 

David C. Houston, 

John Burns, 

William Burns, (wounded.) 

James Smith, 

John Russell, 

Samuel Tunell, 

Levi Whitman. 


The following soldiers were with Lieut. John Orr, at the 
battle of Bennington, under Gen, John Stark : — 

John Barnett, Jacob McQuade, 

Samuel Reinox, (wounded by a Samuel McAfiee, (died.) 

musket ball through each hip.) Robert Matthews, 

Samuel Houston, Isaac Houston, 

Robert Burns, Hugh Riddle, 

James Walker, James Wallace, 

William McLaughlin, John Aiken, 

William Moor, John Bell, 

Adam Smith, John Morrison, 
John Wallace, 

Very few towns, probably, furnished a larger quota of men 
for the Revolutionary army. And those who remained at 
home were willing to make sacrifices, as well as those who 
went away. The people boiled corn-stalks to make molasses, 
and drank liberty-tea, (Ribwort,*) for a beverage instead of 
Hyson and Gunpowder tea. But they were a people accus- 
tomed to hardships ; the females were not strangers to out- 
door work, such as raking hay, reaping grain, and cultivating 
flax. Some of them went out to work for their neighbors, 
in these employments. The sons and brothers of such 
women would be hardy and brave. 

The following document, connected with the Revolution, 
is a curiosity, and shows that at that day constituents felt at 
liberty to instruct their Representatives. It was found among 
the papers of John Rand, Esq., who is also one of the signers. 

" Bedford, May 31, 1783. 

" To Lieut. John Orr, Representative at the General Court 
of the State of New Hampshire : — 

" Sir : — Although we have full confidence in your fidelity 
and public virtue, and conceive that you would at all times 
pursue such measures only as tend to the public good, yet 
upon the particular occasion of our instructing you, we 
conceive that it will be an advantage to have your sentiments 
fortified by those of your constituents. 

" The occasion is this ; the return of those persons to this 
country, who are known in Great Britain by the name of 
loyalist, but in America, by those of conspirators, absentees, 
and tories : 

* Common Plantain leaves, considered a good external application for 
wounds, &.c 


" We agree that you use your influence that these persons 
do not receive the least encouragement to return to dwell 
among us, they not deserving favor, as they left us in the 
righteous cause we were engaged in, fighting for our 
undoubted rights and liberties, and as many of them acted 
the part of the most inveterate enemies. 

" And further, — that they do not receive any favor of any 
kind, as we esteem them as persons not deserving it, but the 

" You are further directed to use your influence, that those 
who are already returned, be treated according to their deserts. 

Sam. Patten, > 

JOHN Rand, a Committee chosen May 28th, by 

John GOFFE, >the Town of Bedford, to give in 
John Bell structions to their Representative." 

George Orr, 

The following interesting item in revolutionary history, is 
from the " American Archives," compiled by Peter Force, 
Esq., and printed at the expense of Government, by order of 
Congress. It is a circular, addressed to the Selectmen of each 
town in the Colony of New Hampshire, with the signatures 
from each town, to a declaration of attachment to the 
American cause. As the document is of considerable value, 
we subjoin it, so far as relates to Bedford. 


" Colony of N. Hampshire, fyc. — Committee of Safety, 

" April 12, 1776. 

" To the Selectmen of Bedford : — In order to carry the 
underwritten resolve of the Honorable Continental Congress 
into execution, you are requested to desire all Males, above 
twenty-one years of age, (lunatics, idiots, and negroes 
excepted,) to sign the Declaration on this paper, and when so 
done, to make return thereof, together with the name or 
names of all who shall refuse to sign the same, to the General 
Assembly, or Committee of Safety of this Colony. 

M. Weare, Chairman." 



u In Congress, March 14, 1776. 

" Resolved, — That it be recommended to the several 
Assemblies, Conventions and Councils, or Committees of 
Safety, of the United Colonies, immediately to cause all 
persons to be disarmed, within their respective Colonies, who 
are notoriously disaffected to the cause of America, or who 
have not associated, and refuse to associate, to defend by 
Arms, the United Colonies against the hostile attempts of 
the British Fleets and Armies. 

" Extract from the Minutes, 

Charles Thompson, Secretary." 

" In consequence of the above Resolution of the Continen- 
tal Congress, and to show our determination in joining our 
American brethren, in defending the lives, liberties, and 
properties of the inhabitants of the United Colonies, We, the 
Subscribers, do hereby solemnly engage and promise, that we 
will, to the utmost of our power, at the risk of our lives and 
fortunes, with arms, oppose the hostile proceedings of the 
British Fleets and Armies against the United American 

Signers in Bedford. — u John Wallace, jr., James Caldwell, 
William Caldwell, John McKinney, Asa Barnes, Samuel 
Tirrel, jr., John Moor, James Wallace, James Martin," &c. 
[See Appendix.] 

The list has about 100 signatures, only a few of which, as 
they stand, are given here, as, with one exception, all the 
inhabitants were willing to sign, as appears from the following 

" To the honorable, the Council and House of Represent- 
atives, for the Colony of New Hampshire, to be convened at 
Exeter, in said Colony, on Wednesday, 5th inst. : 

" Pursuant to the within precept, we have taken pains to 
know the minds of the inhabitants of the town of Bedford, 
with respect to the within obligation, and find none unwil- 
ling to sign the same, except the Rev. John Houston, who 
declines signing the said obligation, for the following reasons ; 
Firstly, Because he did not apprehend that the honorable 
Committee meant that Ministers should take up arms, as 
being inconsistent with their ministerial charge, Secondly, 


Because he was already confined to the County of Hillsbor- 
ough, therefore, he thinks he ought to be set at liberty before 
he should sign the said obligation. Thirdly, Because there 
are three men belonging to his family already enlisted in the 
Continental Army. 

John Goffe, ) ~ 7 . 

t r\ ? (selectmen. 

John Orr, y 

Bedford, June 4th, 1776." 

Should any one have the curiosity to examine the work 
from which the above is an extract, they would find much to 
interest them. In the return from Amherst it is stated, " all 
who have seen it have signed, except" — then the names of 
four are given, who refused to sign. So from Londonderry, 
the return says, " we find none who refuse to sign except the 
following persons," naming fifteen. In some towns, all the 
inhabitants signed the agreement. 

Many interesting facts might, no doubt, be collected con- 
cerning those who went into the Revolutionary service from 
this town. There was one in particular, George Orr, whose 
life was so eventful, that some account should be given. The 
following facts are from his daughter, Ann Orr, and they 
extend back to his childhood, long before the Revolution. 
George Orr, losing his parents when an infant, was brought up 
till the age of sixteen, by an Aunt Dinsmoor, of Windham. 
At that age, he went to sea in the merchant service. But as it 
was then a time of war, he was pressed on board a British 
man-of-war, and continued in the naval service three years. 
Peace being restored, he was paid off and honorably discharged 
in London, from whence he travelled on foot through the 
country to Edinburgh, took passage for America, and returned 
to his friends in Bedford. 

Intending to settle on a farm, he purchased a piece of land 
in Goffstown, and went to sea once more, to obtain a little 
more money to make his last payment and secure a title. 
But as war had again broken out, he was, on his very first 
voyage, pressed again into the British navy, and kept there 
seven years more, generally on the Mediterranean Station. 
At length an order being received to send a vessel on to the 
New England coast, the captain of that vessel, requested the 
commander of the ship, on board which George was bound 
to Gibraltar, to exchange a number of Yankee seamen, who 
he feared might desert when they came into a New England 



port, and give him an equal number of Europeans for his 

George, speaking the broad Scotch dialect, was taken for 
a Scotchman, and being asked if he was willing to change 
ships, readily agreed, and thus, in an unexpected moment was 
released from the Mediterranean Squadron, and found to his 
great joy, that the ship was to be anchored in Portsmouth 
harbor, where he had friends that would aid him in making 
his escape. As soon as the ship arrived, he persuaded another 
sailor to accompany him, took the first chance of securing a 
boat and making their escape. They were closely pursued, 
but finding friends ready to conceal him, he soon arrived 
safely in Londonderry. Advertisements were sent after, 
but he had nothing to fear ; the inhabitants of the place 
would have risked their lives rather than to have given him 
up. The ship could make but a short stay, so that he could 
soon bid defiance to naval authority. He, however, always 
spoke with respect concerning his officers, and said the se- 
verity they practised was generally indispensible. He boasted, 
that through the service, he never got a single scratch from 
the boatswain's cat. [Thanks to Congress, flogging is now 
abolished in the American Navy.] As he had never been 
heard from by his friends, his land had been conveyed to 
another, and he was left, after ten years' hard service on the 
ocean, with nothing but the sailor's suit upon his back. The 
good ladies of Londonderry soon furnished him with clothing. 
His health was unimpaired, and he was willing to labor, but 
being no landsman, he was unskilful in farming, and dared 
not trust himself again on the ocean. As his only resource, 
he engaged in boating on the Western lakes. Commencing 
at Schenectady they pursued their course in batteaux, up the 
Mohawk river, carrying their canoes and baggage from one 
stream to another, till they reached' Lake Ontario, thence 
pursuing their voyage through the lakes, till they met the 
Indian traders at Mackinaw, and exchanging their goods for 
furs, returned to Schenectady in the fall, making but one trip 
in a year. In this business he spent seven years more of his 
life. With the little property thus acquired, he returned to 
Bedford, purchased fifty acres of wild land, built a cottage, 
married Margaret, daughter of Thomas Wallace, and set 
himself to clearing up his farm, but was again interrupted by 
a call to take up arms in defence of his country. He was 
with the army at Ticonderoga, and was a boatswain under 
Gen. Arnold, on Lake Cham plain. Here a ball split open the 


wristband of his shirt, and broke the skin on his hand, which 
was all the wound he received. Having completed his term 
of service, he returned to Bedford, and steadily pursued the 
cultivation of his farm. He died, Oct. 17, 1807. 


It may be well to glance for a moment at the contrast 
between the past and the present, as to modes of living, 
habits, customs, &c. The present generation, surrounded 
with conveniences and luxuries of life, can but imperfectly 
comprehend the living and fare of their progenitors. The 
fine fabrics of the present day, of woollen, linen, silks, &c., 
were worn by few. Shoes were but little worn in the sum- 
mer, except on the Sabbath and holidays ; they were gene- 
rally carried in the hand until they got near the meeting, 
when they were put on. Wheat flour was but little used, 
chiefly on Thanksgiving-days, and other festival occasions ; 
Rye and Indian was the common bread of the country. 
Broths were the common food, particularly Barley broth, 
which was the food for morning, noon, and night, at some 
seasons of the year. Milk was quite a luxury ; Tea and 
Coffee were rarities seldom enjoyed. 

It is related of Dea. Orr, father of the late John Orr, Esq., 
a man remarkable for Scotch wit and fondness for joke, that 
at one time he went to Boston, to sell his butter and other 
produce, and having got through, at the close of the day, and 
being greatly fatigued, he put up at a place of entertainment 
in Boston, and being asked what he would have for supper, 
spoke of his fatigue, and said he would like something to 
restore his spirits. The landlady suggested a cup of tea 
would be good for him, which he readily accepted, and of 
which he drank several cups. After he had done, the lady 
said it was customary to turn the cup upside down to signify 
no more was wanted. He apologized, and said he would 
remember it. The next morning instead of a cup of tea, he 
took, at breakfast, a bowl of bread and milk, and not wanting 
the whole, he finished, and then turned the bowl upside 
down, with the contents on the table. The hostess admin- 
istered a severe reprimand, but he pleasantly replied, she must 
not blame him for following her direction. 


Splinters of pitch pine, and pitch pine knots were used for 
lights, instead of candles. Many a scholar of Bedford has 
studied his lesson by this light, who has afterwards become 
distinguished in public and private life. 

There has been a great change in travelling vehicles. The 
first buggy-wagon, was owned by Stephen French, and Seth 
Page obtained the second from Samuel Hodge, of Frances- 
town, N. H. Venerable farmers, with their wives on pillions 
behind them, rode to meeting on horseback. The manner of 
borrowing and lending among our ancestors, was truly patri- 
archal. A neighbor killed a calf, no part of it was sold, but 
distributed among relatives and friends, the poor widow always 
having a piece, and the minister not being forgotten ; if he did 
not get the shoulder, he got a partion as good. And when a 
neighbor wished for help to break up his ground, and a num- 
ber of yokes of oxen were necessary, all he had to do was 
to let it be known, and not only the oxen and plough could 
be had, but a man to drive. The inhabitants generally were 
well acquainted with each other, — their circumstances and 
wants. The needy and destitute always found a helper, and 
that, too, with a good and generous heart. There was no 
aristocracy, — all considered themselves on an equal footing. 
At the present day, though there is in this town, more than 
usual equality of condition, yet the change is no doubt great. 
The Grandmothers were often robust, hardy women, not 
unwilling to work in the field, reaping grain, &c, as occasion 
required. Such entries as the following, in Matthew Patten's 
Journal, are not uncommon. 

" Aug. 20, 1763. — I worked at the meadow, and I got 100 
cocks this week, and there came up a shower about the 
middle of the afternoon, and catched about 20 cocks ready 
for raking. This week Alex'r Orr's wife reaped a little more 
than half a day." 

In those early days, there was a propensity for frolic and 
fun that would hardly consist with modern gravity. We 
are now more artificial, and society is less tolerant of the 
native outbursts of feeling and humour. There is another 
anecdote related of the same man, that so sadly misunder- 
stood the Boston landlady. People then were less scrupulous 
in the use of language than now. On one occasion, some 
words escaped him, that were thought highly out of character, 
and they got to the ears of the minister ; one said to another. 


I must certainly rebuke him, for using such terms. The 
other said, you had better let Orr alone. However, on one 
occasion, when several of the clergy were together, and 
Deacon Orr among them, one of them reprimanded him for 
the objectionable language. " How could you suffer yourself 
to speak so ?" "Why what was it !" The expression was 
mentioned to him. "And what o' that," said he, "D'ye 
expect me to be a spirit an nae flesh ?" 

The murder of McQ,uade, by Indians, has been alluded to. 
Burns, the survivor, had to bear occasionally the ridicule of 
one of his neighbors, who called in question his courage in 
this affair. He intimated that Burns' imagination had 
conjuredup the Indians, or peradventure, if it was by Indians, 
they were Squaws, — not warriors. At one time, one Cald- 
well, threw this up to Burns, at his house. " Well, well, 
perhaps you may yet be scared, — by Indians, — Squaws or 
not." Very soon, Caldwell set out for home ; it was just on 
the edge of evening. He had no sooner gone, than Burns 
took down his wig, and putting it on, followed Caldwell. 
He soon approached him, and stepping cautiously, broke the 
dry twigs off as he passed along ; Caldwell hearing the sound, 
immediately suspected it was an Indian, and jumped into the 
bushes, where he stood still ; Burns did the same. Caldwell 
ventured out, and looking round very circumspectly, moved 
on again ; Burns too stepped out and moved on after him, 
breaking more twigs off as he passed along. The moment 
Caldwell heard the footsteps of the supposed Indian, he would 
dart into the bushes, and Burns would do the same. At last, 
Caldwell could endure it no longer, he set out on the run, at 
the top of his speed. In getting to the nearest house, he 
had to pass a small brook, over which, was a single square 
stick of timber, which served for foot people to pass over 
without getting wet. But Caldwell took the safe cut, and 
terror giving wings to his speed, went directly through the 
brook at two bounds, and up the bank, and into the house of 
his friends, about four rods off. When fairly in, and as soon 
as he could get his breath, he cries out — "Where's the 
gun ?" There happened to be only a single person in the 
House at the time, a female. " I say — give me the gun, I 
have seen a thousand Indians, in the woods, they will be 
here in a moment." On this, in came the owner, making 
serious enquiries, what was the matter. " Oh, says Caldwell, 
I have just come from Burns', and I have seen a thousand 


Indians, and they will be here in a moment, no doubt they 
are now looking through the cracks of the house." 

"Oh!" said Moor, the owner of the house, " its nothing 
else, Caldwell, but Burns, who is making a fool of you, come 
with me, down to the brook, and I have no doubt you '11 see 
him." To cut the story short, the result was, that Burns 
was never troubled with any more slurs on his valour. 

There was a great deal of primitive simplicity and warm- 
heartedness among the first settlers. They were principally 
established near the river ; but John Orr, (already mentioned,) 
Benjamin Smith, and William Moor, selected farms west of 
Strawberry Hill. Being separated from the main settlement 
by miles of dense forest, they were warmly attached to each 
other, and as Mr. Orr had not been accustomed to labor in his 
native country, he would have found it difficult to get along 
with his work, if his more skilful neighbors had not cheer- 
fully lent him assistance. " Indeed," said Catharine, wife 
of Benjamin Smith, more than sixty years afterwards, " I am 
sure that Billy and Ben never grudged the time they spent 
helping John Orr to clear his land, for he was a father to us 
all, and they were never with him without hearing something 
that did them good. When there was any difficulty, we 
were all but one family ; we were healthy and contented ; the 
only thing we missed, was our sanctuary privileges. We 
could seldom hear a single sermon without going to London- 
derry. But we did na' always stay at home. Annie Orr, 
(grandmother of Rev. Silas Aiken,) and I, carried my Robert 
in our arms when he was ten months old, travelling on 
foot, to Mr. McGregor's meeting ; Ben went with us, but he 
did us little good, for he was not worth a fig to carry a bairn. 
It was a weary journey, but we had a good will to the way, and 
were never a hair the worse for it. We had a day's preaching 
once in a while in some barn. In one instance, Margaret Orr 
left her children at home, and went with John to meeting ; 
but she got no good of the sermon, for thinking of the little 
ones she had left at home. ' They might be careless, and 
tittle-tottle down to the brook and fall in and be drowned ; 
I '11 not do so again ; ' said she. The next Sabbath, John, 
and such of the children as were able, went to meeting, and 
Margaret staid at home to take care of the baby ; and taking 
her Bible to read a little, the child slipped out and was gone ! 
As soon as she missed it, she ran to the brook, but it was too 
late ; She could only wade into the water and draw it out. 


take it in her arms, carry it home, a corpse, and watch in 
silence till the meeting was done." 

The above information is from the late Miss Ann Orr, who 
had it from the lips of old Mrs. Smith. The following, from 
the same source, is a graphic sketch of the death-bed scene of 
a good man. 1752 ; John Orr was seized with a malignant 
fever ; he seemed to be aware that this might be his last 
sickness. " He sent for us all," said the venerable Mrs. 
Smith, when she was more than eighty years of age, " and 
we gathered around his dying bed, and there was mourning 
there, such mourning as conld not now be heard around the 
death-bed of a father. He took Matthew Patten by the hand, 
and told him that he must now take his place in town affairs. 
1 See that the records are fairly kept, and everything done in 
an orderly manner.' He gave each one of us such advice as 
he knew we needed." " And you remember it yet, I 
suppose;" said Miss Orr. "How can I e'er forget it? 'tis 
the last thing I shall think of in this world, if I have my 

Mr. Orr, was, no doubt, a fine specimen of a shrewd, pious, 
plain-hearted Scotchman, such as Scott has represented the 
father of Jeannie Deans, in the " Heart of Mid-Lothian." 

Changes have taken place at the present day, some for the 
better and some for the worse. Customs used to prevail, of 
which it may be said, " They are more honored in the breach 
than the observance." Of these, one was, having ardent 
spirits at funerals, a practice that was once almost universal. 
It is said, that at the funeral of Maj. Goffe, a barrel of rum 
was set out before the house, for all to help themselves, and 
it was all gone before night. 

Then with regard to the Sabbath, it was formerly better 
observed than now. The following article appears in the town- 
meeting warrant for 1779; — " As for some time past, the 
Sabbath has been greatly profaned, by persons travelling with 
burthens upon the same, when there is no necessity for it, — 
to see Whether the town will not try to provide some remedy 
for the same, for the future." Catechistical instruction in 
families, and schools, now so much neglected, then generally 
prevailed, while now the Sabbath School system presents 
some advantages not then enjoyed. 





The religion of the first settlers, was for the most part, that 
of the Church of Scotland, to which country, their ancestors 
originally belonged, and from which they emigrated nearly 
a century before their children came to America. 

Of this church, the acknowledged founder was John 
Knox,* who had learnt from Calvin, in Geneva, the form of 
ecclesiastical government that is known as Presbyterian. 
The Scotch Kirk, as it is called, was the true child of the 
Reformation, being, from the first, strongly opposed to the 
Church of England, which was viewed by them as not 
having come out from the abominations of Babylon the great ; 
but only as having shaken off a few of the grosser corrup- 
tions of Rome. 

Neither did the followers of Knox sympathize cordially 
with the Puritans, or Congregationalists, as they are now 
called. The great Puritan principle of Church government, 
that every congregation ought to be governed by its own 
laws, without being subject to the authority of synods, pres- 
byteries, or any ecclesiastical assembly whatever, was a prin- 
ciple from which the Presbyterian dissented. This, however, 
was about all the difference. " It is in this," says Mosheim, 
" their notion of ecclesiastical government, that the difference 
between them and the Presbyterians, principally consists ; for 
their religious doctrines, except in some points of very little 
moment, are almost entirely the same with those that were 
adopted by the Puritans." 

* The dwelling-house of Knox is still standing in Edinburgh. This inter- 
esting relic which has narrowly escaped destruction, is now in course of repair 
and restoration, and it is said, will, when completed, resist the ravages of 
time, probably for as long a period as has elapsed since the Reformer's era. 
McCrie's Life of Knox, just republished, would be a valuable accession to 
the family library. 


About 1650, quite a number went over from Argyleshire, 
in the West of Scotland, to the counties of Londonderry and 
Antrim, in the North of Ireland. Warmly attached, as might 
be expected, to the Presbyterian doctrine and discipline, in 
which the Church of Scotland was united, — these Scottish 
emigrants were exposed to the persecutions in which the 
Protestants of Ireland were involved during the reign of 
Charles 1st and James 2d, until 1680, the period known as 
the British revolution, when William and Mary ascended the 
throne. They then enjoyed more toleration, but still, as 
they dissented from the Church of England, they were 
subject to many embarrassments, among which not the least 
was, being obliged to support a minister of the established 
religion. Besides, they were continually liable to great hard- 
ships and dangers, and many of them suffered in the siege of 
Londonderry, that memorable affair in 1689, when James 2d, 
with a powerful force from France, made a descent on Ireland. 
Accordingly they resolved to emigrate to America. 

Springing from such an origin, as did most of the early 
inhabitants of this town, it might be expected they would be 
decidedly Presbyterian in doctrine and discipline. That they 
were so, appears very early in their petitions to be incorporated 
as a town, in which they say, — " Your petitioners, as to our 
particular persuasion in Christianity, are generally of the 
Presbyterian denomination." The Church of Scotland has 
been prolific in great and good men. From her bosom have 
gone forth sons who have been luminaries in the church and 
the world. Ralph Erskine, George Campbell, and Thomas 
Chalmers, are names that will go down with lustre, to the 
latest generations. It is a church dear to the hearts of 
multitudes now in heaven, and multitudes still on earth. 
The sacramental seasons, the service at the tables, adapting 
instruction to the old, the middle-aged, and the young, who 
took seats in succession, the tokens that have now disap- 
peared, but were then solemn, and perhaps necessary: the 
preparatory days, and the Monday service, and the gathering 
together, when the country was thinly settled, on Friday or 
Saturday, from different and sometimes distant towns, to hold 
sacred communion with God and each other, furnished 
altogether a most thrilling occasion, and must have had a 
most happy religious influence on those who enjoyed the 
privilege. It was not uncommon to go from this town, and 


from New Boston, and even Antrim, to Londonderry, on these 
sacramental festivals, which occurred only twice a year. 

The first Presbytery in New England was constituted in 
Londonderry, April 16, 1745, and was called the " Boston 
Presbytery." It was by this body, the church in Bedford 
was organized, according to the Presbyterian form of govern- 
ment. Immediately on the incorporation of the town, they 
turn their attention to the settlement of a stated ministry. 
At the first town-meeting after the charter, we find the 
following vote: — "Voted, That the ministers be enter- 
tained at Sam'l Patten's, at the charge of the town." A call 
was given to three candidates in succession, but without any 
important results. 

July 26, 1750. " Voted, There be a call given to the Rev. 
Mr. Alexander Boyd, to the work of the ministry in this 
town." At the same meeting it was " Voted, That Capt. 
John Goffe, Dea. John Orr, and Mr. Hugh Riddle are to 
present a call to the Rev. Mr. Alexander Boyd, to the work 
of the ministry in this town, and are commissioned to 
prosecute the call to the Presbytery, and to all intents needful 

March 28th, 1753. " Voted, Unanimously, to present a 
call for Mr. Alexander McDowell, to the Rev'd Presbytery, 
for the work of the ministry in this town." 

Oct. 1st, 1754. " Voted, To give Mr. Samuel McOlintock 
a call to the work of the ministry in the town of Bedford." 

May 3lst, 1756, " Voted, Unanimously, to revive their 
former call to Mr. Sam'l McClintock to the work of the 
ministry in this town." 

Rev. Mr., afterwards Dr. McClintock was settled at 
Greenland, in this state, and for many years was an able and 
faithful minister. Rev. Mr. Bouton, in his discourse, entitled 
"Fathers of the New Hampshire Ministry," mentions Dr. 
McClintock as " among the New Hampshire pastors, who, 
more or less, had divinity students." His ministry continued 
forty-eight years. The day before he died, he said, " that his 
entire dependence and hope was on that Gospel which he 
had preached to others." He was a graduate of Princeton 
College, N. J., 1751 ; received degree of A. M. at Harvard, 
and that of D. D., at Yale College, 1791. He died, 1804. 

In the next effort to settle a minister they were successful. 

Aug. 5, 1756. We find the following in the town records. 
" Voted, Unanimously, to give Mr. John Houston a call to the 
work of the ministry in this town." 


Mr. Houston was born in Londonderry, 1723, and it ivas 
stated to the writer of this notice, by an aged lady of the 
name of Houston, still living in this town, that his oldest 
brother was the third male child born in Londonderry. He 
was educated at Princeton, N. J., at which College he took 
his degree, 1753. He studied divinity in his native town, 
with Rev. David McGregor, of Londonderry. Mr. Houston 
was well-reputed for classical and theological learning, and 
settled among the people with encouraging prospects of con- 
tinued usefulness and happiness. By virtue of being the first 
settled minister of the place, he was entitled to certain lands 
reserved for that purpose in the settlement of the township, 
some of which still remains in possession of his descendants. 
The following is the provision made by the town for the 
support of Mr. Houston. 

Aug. 7th, 1756. « Voted, To give Mr. John Houston, 
equal to 40 pounds Sterling, in old Tenor, as the law shall 
find the rate of Dollars, or Sterling Money, for his yearly 
stipend, if he is our ordained minister. And that what num- 
ber of Sabbath-days, annually, we shall think ourselves not 
able to pay them, he shall have to his own use and disposal, 
deducted out of the aforesaid sum in proportion, (viz. :) 
Apportioning the whole of the aforesaid sum equally among 
the whole number of Sabbath-days in a year, and those 
Sabbath-days which shall be so set off to him by the town 
annually, the town shall be freed from paying to him for 
them, and shall only pay according to the aforesaid propor- 
tion for what number of Sabbath-days we shall keep of his 
time. And that what number of Sabbath-days the town shall 
vote, annually, to have of his time, them they shall have at 
the same rate of proportion, or the whole of his time when 
the town shall see meet." 

According to these conditions, we find the town every year 
passed a vote, that he should have so many Sabbaths, some- 
times ten or fifteen, more or less, as the inhabitants might 
decide, for his use and disposal, until, at a period of great 
dissatisfaction, as we shall see, they voted him the whole of 
the year. On the 28th Sept., 1757, Rev. John Houston was 
ordained to the work of the ministry in this town. The 
ministers who took part in the services of the ordination, 
were the following, according to Matthew Patten's Journal, in 
which we find the following record : — " Rev'd Mr. True, of 


Hampstead offered the prayer ; Rev'd Mr. Parsons,* of New- 
bury, preached from 1 Tim. i., 2, — ' According to the 
glorious gospel of the blessed God, which was committed to 
my trust ;' Rev'd D. McGregor, of Londonderry, gave the 
charge ; Rev'd Mr. True gave the right hand of fellowship ; 
and Rev'd Mr. White, of Gloucester, concluded by prayer." 
From this journal, we learn that Mr. Houston's text, the first 
Sabbath after ordination, was, — "Fear not little flock ; it is 
your father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom ; " very 
appropriate ; as it must have been a small church and congre- 
gation in the midst of a wilderness. The first board of Elders, 
which was probably chosen about this time, consisted of 
James Little, James Gilmoor, Benj. Smith, William Moor, and 
James Moor, f 

Among a small parcel of MSS. Sermons, found among Mr. 
Houston's papers, was an outline of a discourse delivered on 
occasion of the ordination of Elders, probably this very board. 
He must have been a young man at the time, as it would be 
impossible for any but young eyes to decipher the characters, 
which are very small, on a very scanty piece of paper. As 
nothing from Mr. Houston's pen, has been preserved in print, 
it may be interesting to the curious, to look at this specimen 
of his composition, especially as it shows his sentiments as to 
the duties of ruling elders. The text is from Titus, i, 5, — 
" For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldst set 
in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in 
every city, as I had appointed thee." The Sermon is thus 
divided : — 

1st. Show the Divine right of ruling elders ; 

2d. Qualifications of ruling elders ; 

3c?. Duties incumbent on them ; 

Ath. Application. 

* Of Mr. Parsons, the following anecdote is related. He was at times, very 
passionate, but when the first impulse was over, no man could be more peni- 
tent. On one occasion, a bill was presented him for payment, which at first 
struck him as exorbitant, and he angrily refused. No sooner, however, had the 
claimant returned to his place of business, than Mr. Parsons entered, and the 
following dialogue ensued : — 

" Have you seen Mr. Parsons this morning ?" 

" Yes, certainly, I saw you at your house, and presented your bill." 

" It was n't Mr. Parsons, it was the devil. I '11 settle the bill ! " 

t There were Elders before this, — as there was an Elder John Orr, who 
died, 1753. 


Passing over the first two, he devoted himself to the third, 
viz. : Duties of Elders. " These," he says, " are too many to 
be enumerated. But the main and principal part of their duty 
and office is to rule and govern the church. To this end, 
you are to join together, in conjunction with the Pastor, and 
then you make us a Judicatory of the Lord Jesus Christ ; so 
that whatsoever you bind or loose on earth, shall be bound or 
loosed in heaven. 

'•' Your office also, according to our Constitution, gives you 
right to sit and vote in the superior judicatories of the church, 
from the lowest to the highest. It it also the business and 
duty of your order, to watch over the moral behavior of your 
fellow-christians. And as it is part of the duty of all 
Christians, to exhort daily, and to love as Brethren, so it is 
something peculiar to your order, to visit the fatherless and 
widow, and be ready to give counsel and advice in all difficult 
matters, to prevent angry debates and heal divisions. You 
are to reprove, rebuke and exhort, to stand and shut the 
door of the church against scandalous professors, and open 
the door to those who are qualified. 

"Application. First, — Hence we see the excellency and 
glory of the gospel dispensation, wherein life and immortality 
are brought to light. 

"Second, — Hence we see the necessity of proper judica- 
tories in church matters, to settle controversies, otherwise 
there would be confusion. Though some object to giving 
away their rights, yet we know no rights that conflict with 
the order of God's house. [Call the names of the elders elect.] 
You have, in a free, open meeting, been elected to the 
office of ruling elders, and after taking time to consider, you 
have seen it your duty to accept. You are now to be set 
apart for that office. You are to engage in an office to which 
there is little of a temporal nature to induce you ; an office, 
honorable, but apt to be the mark of banter, ridicule, and 
profane drollery. You profess to adhere to the essential 
doctrines of the Old and New Testament, the only rule of 
faith and practice as particularly set forth in the confession of 
faith ; and further, you profess, as far as you know your own 
heart, you now undertake this office, not with a view to 
honor or a name in the world, nor with a design to lord it 
over God's heritage, or any similar design whatsoever, but 
with a single purpose, to strengthen the hands of your breth- 
ren, and contribute your mite, to advance the interests of 



Christ's kingdom in the world. And to this end, you do 
engage to apply yourselves to a faithful discharge of the duties 
of your office, as briefly hinted at : let me exhort you to think 
often of your solemn engagements, and to apply yourselves 
to the duties of your temporal calling as Christians ; so to the 
duties of your peculiar office, and let these be backed by a 
prayerful and exemplary study to be just and upright, to be 
inoffensive and modest, savory and holy in your conversation. 
Think that the least wrong step, or incautious conduct, will 
be noticed in you. Some will be spiteful and wicked enough 
to make a handle of it. Walk wisely towards them that are 
without. Know how you ought to behave yourselves in His 
house, the church of the living God, — the pillar and ground 
of the truth. 

"Brethren of the Congregation, — You see these men, 
whom your choice has raised to the office of Elders. You 
have heard a summary of their duties and obligations. Suffer 
the word of exhortation. Be exhorted to receive them in 
love, yield them that respect and submission, to which by 
their office, they are entitled. Be subject to them in disci- 
pline. Permit them to rule over you as their duties require." 

Such is the outline, given with verbal accuracy, of what was 
probably an interesting sermon, on an extraordinary occasion. 
But the paper that contains the whole, would scarcely cover 
the palm of the hand, owing in part probably to the scarcity 
of paper at that day. It is probable the sermon occupied 
much time in the delivery, as they were accustomed to long 
sermons. An old lady from Scotland, said that " in her 
country, the sermons were two hours and a half long, but 
had now come to be only one hour and a half, and she feared 
what the world \vas coming to." 

We have no records of the Church to which to refer during 
this early period of its existence. It enjoyed the stated 
ministrations of the gospel, and seems to have grown in 
strength and prosperity. The pastor devoted himself from 
year to year to the laborious duties of his solemn calling. 
Among his old papers was found one giving a long catalogue 
of names, with this heading, all in his own hand-writing : 
il A List of persons supposed to be qualified for being Cate- 
chised in Bedford, Jarfy 10th, 175S." On this list are 
several hundred names, classed apparently by families ; among 
which we find the names still familiar to us, of Moor, Walker, 
Patten, Orr, Wallace, Barr, Riddel, Aiken ; and other names 


not now among us, as Boies, Little, Taggart, Gile, McDowell, 
Scobey, &c. Catechistical instruction was then, no doubt, 
faithfully attended to, with the exception of few, if any, 

In 1758, we find on the town records a petition of which 
the following is the commencement : — " We, the subscribers, 
inhabitants of the town of Merrimack, being of the Presby- 
terian persuasion. And whereas we cannot enjoy the 
privilege of the public worship of God in our own town, 
according to our own persuasion, nor any where else at 
present, so convenient as at Bedford, under the ministry of 
Rev. John Houston, therefore, &c." Acting on this petition, 
the town " Voted, — That the inhabitants of Merrimac who 
pay rates to the support of the gospel in Bedford, have so 
many Sabbath-days of our Rev'd Pastor's time, for public 
worship to be held at John Burns' as they pay in proportion 
with us, toward his annual salary for the present year, if our 
Rev'd Pastor be willing." 

Nothing appears but that Mr. Houston was happy and 
successful in his parochial relations, until about 1768, when 
there appears to have been some grievances, and symptoms of 
dissatisfaction. On the one hand the minister and elders 
complained of it as a grievance, that "a number of persons, 
members of the church, on pretence of occasional commun- 
ion at Londonderry, broke off from the use and improvement 
of common and special ordinances at home ; " and on the 
other hand, certain members of the church and congregation 
complained, among other things, that the minister maintained 
that " what he and the deacons did, was above being inquired 
into ; and for prosecuting to the Presbytery, some of those 
who have endeavored to enquire into the reason of some 
conduct of the deacons." But no open rupture appears to 
have occurred between the minister and people, until the 
exciting period of the Revolution. The news of the Lex- 
ington battle, 19th April, 1775, spread through the land. 
All New England was in arms, and thousands moving 
towards the scene of action. The next year, Independence 
was declared, and the declaration was received with acclama- 
tion. In this state of things, those who set themselves 
against the tide of patriotic feeling, became very unpopular. 
Perfect unanimity could hardly be expected in so complete a 
revolution. Many individuals, from various causes, still 
adhered to the parent state. Persons of this description were 


denominated tories. and enemies to their country, and some 
of them became so obnoxious to the people, that without the 
semblance of authority, they were seized by force, and 
subjected to personal abuse, in a manner unjustifiable. 

Mr. Houston took the unpopular side in politics, and being 
constitutionally inflexible, became a thorough and decided 
loyalist. In taking this step, he placed himself in direct oppo- 
sition to the prevailing spirit of the town, and in his public 
ministrations, as well as private conversation, gave great 
offence to his people. But we can best gather a correct view 
of these troubles, by examining the votes of the town in rela- 
tion to these matters. 

May 16, 1775, we find the following article in the warrant 
for town-meeting. " To see what method the town will 
take relating to Rev'd John Houston, in these troublesome 
times, as we apprehend his praying and preaching to be 
calculated to intimidate the minds of his hearers, and to 
weaken their hands in defence of their just rights and 
liberties, as there seems a plan to be laid by Parliament to 
destroy both." 

June 15th, 1775. They voted his dismission. 

As the excitement of those times has passed away, and 
these things have become matter of sober history, it may not 
be amiss to give this vote, as being now a mere matter of 
curiosity. It is a transcript of the spirit of those exciting 
times, and though expressed in decided language, it does 
not involve the character of Mr. Houston, any farther than as 
to his political opinions, in which he probably was entirely 
conscientious, though in adopting them, he differed from his 
people, and from the great majority of the clergy of New 
England, who were friendly to the Revolution. The vote 
runs thus: — "Whereas, we find that the Rev'd Mr. John 
Houston, after a great deal of tenderness and pains taken with 
him, both in public and private, and toward him, relating to 
his speeches, frequently made both in public and private, 
against the rights and privileges of America, and his vindi- 
cating of King and Parliament in their present proceedings 
against the Americans ; and having not been able hitherto to 
bring him to a sense of his error, and he has thereby rendered 
himself despised by people in general, and by us in particular, 
and that he has endeavored to intimidate us against main- 
taining the just rights of America : Therefore, we think it 
not our duty as men or Christians, to have him preach any 


longer with us as our minister. Therefore, Voted, That he, 
(viz.) Rev'd John Houston, preach no more in Bedford until 
the last day of March next, and that he have 36 Sabbath-days 
more to his own use and disposal, viz., from the 16th of 
May, last, to the last day of March next, more than the 9 
Sabbath-days voted to his own use and disposal at our last 
March meeting ; and that the town be freed from paying him 
anything for the said 36 Sabbath-days, agreeably to the vote 
of the town he settled with us on." 

The above vote was passed unanimously. In the mean- 
time, Mr. Houston was not silent. He made a communication 
to the town, of which the following extracts will give a correct 

" To the people of Bedford, met or convened at the 
meeting-house, on Tuesday afternoon, May 16, 1775. 
Sirs : — As I have been desired by some of our people to 
give in writing, my thoughts and sentiments about the times, 
I would observe that my mind for some considerable time 
past, has been in pain or anxiety for my country. I plainly 
foresaw, not by the spirit of prophecy, but by the moral 
reason and nature of things, high measures in opposition to 
the laws of commerce and trade, that mobs and riots would 
increase our calamity. And though our opposition some years 
ago, succeeded in the repeal of the Stamp Act, yet I was 
afraid some of our late measures of opposition would have a 
contrary effect. And could I bear a sincere regard for the 
welfare of my Country, and see the storms gathering thick 
every way, and not be perplexed therewith. 'T is true, 
nevertheless, I thought it my duty not to intermeddle much 
in the disputes of civil policy, nor be strenuous in the present 
debate between Great Britain and her colonies, but contend 
earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints. And 
accordingly I do not remember I ever dipped into the merits 
of the present dispute, in any of my public discourses ; and 
whoever may think that when I prayed that we might all 
have the pathway of God and duty made plain and open to 
us in every respect, and we enabled to acquiesce therein, 
according to the will of God ; or in other words that we 
might all return to God and duty, from whom we have deeply 
revolted, I meant thereby Lord North's duties or taxes, I can 
truly say I had no such thought ; these are phrases to which 
I have been long used." * # * This defence thus closes : 
" Suffer ministers, then, to go on praying earnestly for all 


men, according to the will of God, and to blow the trumpet 
in Zion, Shewing unto God's Israel their sins, the procuring 
curse of God's judgments, that we may all repent and turn 
from them unto God, as the only way we know his judgments 
can be averted. Surely our doing so here cannot intimidate the 
minds of our men gone into the war, but rather we may help 
them thereby, in our earnest prayer to God for them. Suffer 
ministers, also, to be guided and directed by the leadings and 
teachings of the unerring word and spirit of God, in all their 
public prayers, and to hear or receive the word at God's 
mouth, and warn his people from him, and not from the 
leadings or dictates of any person living. That we may all 
be directed in the way of God and duty in every respect, and 
kept in the same by the almighty power of God, through 
faith unto salvation, is the earnest desire and prayer of your 
careful pastor, John Houston." 

Mr. Houston's dismission did not take place, or rather his 
pastoral connection was not ecclesiastically dissolved, till 
1778, as appears by the following minute : 

" Whereas, there appears to be a dissatisfaction among the 
people of Bedford, relative to Rev'd Mr. Houston, whereby 
he is not likely to be useful among them in the ministry, by 
the consent of both parties, this Synod do dissolve his pastoral 
relation to said congregation. 

Simon Williams, Synod Clerk. 
October 1st, 1778." 

After this, Mr. Houston occasionally preached as he had 
opportunity, in this State, and in Vermont. Rev. Silas 
McKeen, of Bradford, Vt., mentioned to the present minister 
of Bedford, that he was baptized in infancy by Mr. Houston, 
in one of his excursions into the state of Vermont. He 
spoke of the impression made on him when a boy by Mr. 
Houston's appearance on horseback : a tall, solemn-looking 
man, with a wig of the fashion of that day. The trials, 
severe as they were, through which he was called to pass, did 
not crush his spirit, though they may have rendered more 
repulsive a temperament that has been said to have been 
stern and rigid. He no doubt felt himself injured. Had it 
been merely his removal as minister of the place, he could 
not complain, because it was no more than might have been 
expected in such times. But it is painful to add that he was 


personally abused ; and as tradition relates, was on a certain 
night taken away from his family with violence, conveyed in 
an insulting manner out of town, and returned home again 
in safety, as the leaders of the party had pledged themselves 
to his wife, when they took him away. But the whole 
country was greatly excited. It was confined to no class of 
people. Lieut. James Moor related the following anecdote. 
Rev. Mr. Emerson of Pepperell, of strong revolutionary 
feelings, as might be expected from one who resided in the 
same town with the commander at Bunker Hill, was passing 
through Bedford, and called to pass the night with Mr. 
Houston. Finding what his sentiments were, and seeing too 
that he made use of tea, at that time a very unpatriotic 
beverage, he declined sitting down at the same table, and had 
one provided in another room ; and even then would not 
unite in asking a blessing. Mr. Houston retained his ecclesi- 
astical standing, through all the difficulties. We find the 
following minute in the records of the Associate Presbytery. 

" At a meeting in Peterborough, March 2d, 1785, The 
Rev'd John Houston applying to this Presbytery for a union 
with them, and producing a good certificate from his former 
Presbytery, it was unanimously agreed that this Presbytery 
admit Rev'd John Houston as a corresponding member." 

By way of explanation, it should be stated that in 1775, 
the "Boston Presbytery" was divided into three bodies, viz., 
the Eastern Presbytery, or Presbytery of Salem ; the Middle 
Presbytery, or Presbytery of Londonderry ; and the Western, 
or Presbytery of Palmer. It was to the latter that the church 
in Bedford belonged, and Mr. Houston removed his relation 
from that, to the Presbytery of Londonderry. I find also on 
referring to the records of the Presbyterian church, Long- 
lane, now Federal street, Boston, that Mr. Houston frequently 
attended meetings of Presbytery held there. It is said Mr. 
Houston took quite an interest in the instruction of youth, 
and at a time when schools were very rare, instructed the 
neighboring boys at his house on evenings, in reading, 
arithmetic, &c, for which they felt under great obligations 
to him in after years. He interested himself in children in 
his better days, loved to encourage them, and was pleased 
with an apt reply to any question. On one occasion, it is 
said, he went into a neighbor's field, after dinner on a 
summer's day, and found a little son of the owner at work. 
" Where is your father ? " " He is lying down, taking his 


rest." " Why should you work and slave yourself, while he 
is taking his ease ? " He pressed the little boy awhile in this 
way : — at last the boy looked up, and said, — " Sir, he took 
care of me, when I could n't help myself, and now I ought to 
do something for him." The ready reply so pleased the old 
gentleman, that he frequently alluded to it afterwards. 

Mr. Houston was united in marriage to Anna, daughter of 
Robert and Sarah Peebles, by whom he had Samuel, Robert, 
John, Sarah and Anna. Samuel joined the army and engaged 
in the Revolutionary war. Sarah was the second wife of 
Hon. John Orr, and Anna became the wife of Mr. Hugh 
Riddle. Mr. Houston had three grandsons that were educated 
at Yale College. 

Rev. John Houston died February 3d, 1798, aged 75. His 
wife died July 4th, of the same year, aged 72. Both were 
buried in the old grave-yard where suitable gravestones mark 
the place of their interment. 

After the dismissal of Mr. Houston, the town was desti- 
tute of a settled minister for nearly thirty years. The people 
were supplied with preaching by various ministers, but with 
a single exception, not by any one individual for any length 
of time. As might be expected in such a state of things, the 
ordinances were neglected, divisions came in, and the inter- 
ests of piety suffered a decline. It is a maxim universally 
true, that if a people would enjoy the blessing of God, and 
promote the best interests of themselves and their children, it 
behoves them to sustain the regular institutions of religion. 

"During the long period of nearly thirty years," writes the 
late Rev. Mr. Goffe, of Millbury, Mass., in a letter to the 
present pastor, " the people hired a great many candidates and 
preachers, from time to time, but I do not remember that 
they ever gave one a call to settle with them. In the mean- 
time, the cause of religion ran very low, the church was 
diminished and scattered, professors lived like other men, and 
it was scarcely known who they were, only when they came 
from time to time to the communion-table. As to spirituality 
in religion, it was scarcely to be found ; and here I would 
say, with deep emotion, that I never knew a revival of religion 
in town until of late years ; and though I hope some souls 
were born of God, yet they were few and far between." 

Looking back from this distance of time, it appears aston- 
ishing that the flock of Christ was not irrecoverably scattered 
during such a long season of destitution. But the watchful 


providence of God surrounded the church through these years 
of peril, and preserved it from the fate by which other 
churches in similar circumstances have been overtaken. 

For two or three years, the pulpit was statedly supplied by 
Rev. Mr. Pickles, whose ministry requires a passing notice. 
Bat little is known of his history. He was a native of Wales, 
and after arriving in this country, appears to have resided in 
or near Philadelphia. He came to this town some time 
about 1787 or 8, and excited great attention by his power of 
preaching. His wife, who was said to be a most estimable 
lady, soon joined him from Philadelphia. Mr. P. was unfor- 
tunately, one of those men who have warm friends and invet- 
erate enemies. He was accordingly the occasion of serious 
divisions in the town, some being warmly in his favor, and 
others as much against him. Amid all the conflicting opin- 
ions concerning his character, there was one in which all 
agreed, that he had uncommon pulpit talents. "I was but a 
youth," writes Rev. Mr. Parker of Derry, "when Mr. Pick- 
les preached in Bedford, and my recollection of him is not 
very distinct. His person and his manner in the desk, were 
commanding and impressive ; his voice and elocution, grace- 
ful ; and so far as I can recollect, his sentiments evangelical, 
though not very distinguishing." There are some still living 
among us, who think their attention was first turned to 
religion, under his ministry. 

Sept. 5, 1804. Rev. David McGregor was ordained to the 
pastoral charge of the church and congregation in this town. 
As such things were then part of the town business, we find 
in the town records the call, and Mr. McGregor's answer, 
with other arrangements connected with such an occasion. 
Rev. Dr. Morrison with whom Mr. McGregor pursued his 
theological studies, preached the ordination sermon, from 1 
Tim. vi, 20. Previously to this interesting event, there had 
been an effort to revive the state of things, and prepare the 
way for the settlement of the ministry. We find in the 
session book, the following entry : — "At a meeting of church 
members, at the meeting-house in Bedford, on Lord's day 
evening, Sept. 25, 1803, according to public notice previously 
given, it was unanimously agreed, that the sacrement of the 
Lord's Supper, be administered in this place as soon as con- 
venient ; and taking into consideration the state of the session, 
agreed unanimously, that a church-meeting be holden in this 
place, on Monday, 3d day of October next, at one o'clock, 


afternoon, to elect such, and so many persons, as shall then 
be agreed on, to be ordained as elders of this church." 

"Monday, Oct. 3, met according to agreement, and voted, 
that, David McQuesten, John Craig, John Houston. Samuel 
Barr, Phineas Aikin and William Moor, be appointed to serve 
as elders, in addition to those now in office ; and it was 
agreed, that the elders in office procure a minister, either by 
applying to Rev. Mr. Morrison, Londonderry, or to the Pres- 
bytery for the purpose of ordaining the elders elect, and 
dispensing the sacrament of the Lord's Supper. Application 
having been made to Rev. Mr. Morrison. Friday, 28th Octo- 
ber current, was appointed as a Fast in this church, and 
David McCiuesten, John Craig, John Houston, Phineas Aiken 
and William Moor, were set apart and ordained in due form, 
as ruling elders of the church in this town, by the Rev. Mr. 

After Mr. McGregor's settlement, the religious aspect of 
things began to change, sensibly for the better. The church, 
as a body, became more regular and consistent : affairs were 
conducted with a greater regard to system ; additions were 
yearly made to their number, and the cause of benevolence 
and piety advanced with a steady progress. 

Session-book, Feb. 16, 1806. " Voted, that elder John 
Holbrook attend as a delegate at New Boston, for the purpose 
of ordaining Mr. Ephraim P. Bradford to the charge of the 
church and congregation in that place." 

Feb. 24, 1806. " Voted, that the town be divided into 
districts for ministerial visitation." 

Sept. 8, 1817. Stephen Thurston, John French, John Orr 
Houston, Richard Dole and Moody Martin Stevens, having 
been duly elected to the office of ruling elders, were set 
apart and ordained in due form, as ruling elders, in the church 
in Bedford, by Rev. David McGregor. 

In 1818, there was more than ordinary attention to religion, 
and on Sabbath, May 31st of that year, fourteen persons 
Avere admitted to the church. 

April 17, 1825. Mr. McGregor presented to the session, 
the following communication : — 

" Bedford, April 16, 1825. 

" To the Session of the Church in Bedford. 

" Gentlemen, I hereby apprise you of my desire of an 
immediate dismission from my pastoral charge in this place. 
My reasons for this desire, are, first, that my bodily infirmi- 


ties render me incapable of fully discharging the requisite 
ministerial duties of so large a parish ; and second, that 
nearly two-fifths of those subject to taxation for my support, 
have expressed their willingness, that a dissolution of our 
relation as pastor and people, should take place." 

Accordingly, at the meeting of the Londonderry Presby- 
tery, held at Nottingham-West, now Hudson, on the last 
Wednesday in April, 1825, the pastoral relation subsisting 
between Mr. McGregor and the church, was by mutual 
consent dissolved. 

Mr. McGregor was born in Londonderry. He was grand 
nephew of Rev. David McGregor, and great grandson of Rev. 
James McGregor, the first minister of Londonderry. After 
completing his collegiate course at Dartmouth College, in 
1799, he devoted himself for some time to the instruction of 
youth. Among other places, he taught at Cambridge, Mass., 
with great credit and success. About this time he was united 
in marriage, to Miss Butterfield, of Groton, Mass., who was 
soon removed by death. After his settlement at Bedford, he 
was married to Annis, daughter of Hon. John Orr, and this 
connexion was soon sundered by death. His third wife, who 
still survives him, was Miss Rebecca Merrill, of Falmouth, 
Maine. He had no children. Mr. McGregor, in the early 
part of his ministry, was absent from his people some months, 
on a missionary tour in the Northern section of the state, and 
was one of the first missionaries sent out by the New Hamp- 
shire Domestic Missionary Society. The writer of this notice 
heard Rev. Mr. Fairbanks of Littleton, N. H., say, that Mr. 
McGregor's labors were blest, and that he had met with 
individuals in that part of the state, who retained a pleasant 
remembrance of his preaching. An account of his tour was 
published in a religious journal of the day. While engaged 
on his missions, the following incident occurred. In that 
part of the country, there was at that time a prejudice, to 
some extent, against the use of notes in preaching. On one 
occasion, Mr. McGregor engaged in a controversy on the 
subject, with a preacher not remarkable for his learning. He 
affirmed that it was anti-scriptural to use written notes, in the 
desk, citing as proof of his position, the passage, — " Take 
neither purse nor scrip," and taking " scrip" evidently to mean 
anything written. Mr. McGregor applied this construction 
to the "scrip" into which David put the stones when he sle-or 


Goliah ; thus showing the absurdity of confounding the 
difference between a manuscript and a bag or wallet. 

Another anecdote is related of him while on this missionary 
tour. In the wild and thinly settled country near the White 
Mountains, he arrived on a summer evening, after a toilsome 
day's journey over a mountainous road, at a rude cabin in the 
bosom of a dark forest, and was so fatigued, that he immedi- 
ately retired to bed, knowing nothing of the inmates of the 
house. After a season of sleep, he was aroused by footsteps 
in the house, and by an undertone conversation between 
persons in an adjoining room. He listened, caught here and 
there a word, and began to suspect that he had fallen into 
bad hands, who were plotting against his life. Putting 
himself in the best attitude of defence in his power, he lay 
awake the rest of the night. Morning dawned, and found 
him safe. On rising, he soon discovered that he was with a 
very poor but pious family, and that the undertone talk and 
footsteps, which had excited his suspicions, arose from their 
joy at seeing a missionary, and from the preparations they 
had made in the night to give him in the morning the best 
reception their poverty would admit. Several of Mr. 
McGregor's sermons were published, one of which was occa- 
sioned by the sudden death of Mrs. Isaac Riddle, who was 
killed by a fall from a horse, April 6th, 1804. Text on the 
occasion, 1st Samuel, xx. 3. Mr. McGregor made himself 
very useful after his dismission, as an instructor of youth. He 
encouraged many to get an education, who owe to his 
benevolent interest in their welfare, much of their subsequent 
success in life. He was a man of fine social qualities, and 
often made himself very interesting by his powers of conver- 
sation. In 1831 he removed to Falmouth, Maine, where 
he engaged in promoting the interests of learning and 
religion. He died there very suddenly, October 18th, 1845, 
aged 74. 

July 5th, 1826, Rev. Thomas Savage was installed pastor 
of the church and congregation in this place, by Londonderry 
Presbytery. Sermon on the occasion by Rev. Dr. Whiton, of 
Antrim, from Luke ix., 60, — "But go thou and preach the 
kingdom of God." Mr. Savage was ordained to the work of 
the ministry without pastoral charge, by the Presbytery of 
Mississippi, August, 1822, and preached two years at Baton 
Rouge, Louisiana. 

Several changes and improvements took place in Bedford 


about this time, that were favorable to the interests of 
religion. The Sabbath-school had been attended with rather 
a divided interest, in two or three school-houses ; it now 
began to be held during intermissions, at the meeting-house, 
and with very happy effects. A stated prayer-meeting com- 
menced October 11th, 1827, which has continued to be 
observed, on Thursday, from that time to the present. On 
Thanksgiving day, 1829, Dr. Justin Edwards delivered a 
discourse on Temperance, which awakened great attention 
and proved the commencement of a great Temperance 
reformation. A Temperance Society was immediately 
formed, which exerted a good influence and was suc- 
ceeded by another, excluding all alcoholic drinks. 

The year 1831 was memorable for revivals throughout the 
land. This church partook largely of the influence, and in 
September, of that year, ninety-one united with the church, 
of whom many have died, some have fallen from their pro- 
fession, and a goodly number live to be ornaments in the 
church, and blessings to the world. At subsequent periods, 
also, there have been seasons of religious interest, which have 
resulted in additions to the church. The church at present is 
in a diminished state, owing to deaths, removals, and a long 
season of religious dearth, in which few additions have been 
made by profession, Of those who were once members of 
this church, numbers have gone to do good, it is hoped, in 
Wisconsin, Michigan, and other parts of the country. In the 
work of foreign missions, in the ministry at home, and in 
Western fields, among the Indians of our own country, and 
the sable children of Africa, laborers have gone forth from 
this church, who, we trust, will meet their reward in heaven. 

Rev. Thomas Savage was born in Boston, Sept. 2d, 1793. 
Completed his collegiate course at Harvard College, 1813. 
Pursued the study of theology for some time at Cambridge, 
and finished his preparation under the care of the Mississippi 
Presbytery, 1822. He was married at St. Francisville, 
Louisiana, to Miss Lucy Woodruff, by whom he had the 
following children, — Julia Ann, born at Baton Rouge, 
Louisiana ; James, Lucretia, and Frances born in Bedford. 
Mrs. Savage was born in Litchfield, Connecticut, August 10, 
1790, and died May 16, 1847. A sermon on the occasion of 
her death, was delivered by Rev. Mr. Allen. October 12th, 
1848, he was married to Miss Sarah Webster, of Haverhill, 
N. H. Mr. Savage is lineally descended from Maj. Thomas 


Savage, who came over to this country, in 1635, and married 
Faith, daughter of the celebrated Mrs. Ann Hutchinson, so 
well known in the early history of New England. As 
Bedford was one of the townships granted to soldiers who 
served in the Narraganset war, it may be interesting to notice 
that Maj. Savage commanded the forces of Massachusetts in 
the early part of that war. In Gookin's account, is the 
following curious certificate, signed by him, bearing testi- 
mony to the good conduct of the praying Indians, who joined 
him as allies : 

"These do certify, that I, Thomas Savage, of Boston, 
being Commander of the English forces at Mount Hope, in 
the beginning of the war between the English and Indians, 
about July, 1675, and afterwards, in March, 1676, at Menu- 
mene and Hadley, in both which expeditions, some of the 
Christian Indians belonging to Natick, were in the army ; as 
at Mount Hope were about 40 men, and at Menumene, 6. I 
do testify, on their behalf, that they carried themselves well, 
and approved themselves courageous soldiers, and faithful to 
the English interest. Dated at Boston, the 20th day of 
Dec'r, 1677. Thomas Savage." 

In the Proprietors' records, previous to the incorporation of 
the town, is found the name of a son of Maj. Savage, Perez, 
who probably inherited a right from his father, and in the 
town records, down to a late period, is seen the name of 
Habijah Savage, on the non-resident tax list, who was a 
grandson of Maj. Savage, and great grandfather of the present 
minister of Bedford. In the possession of Hon. James 
Savage of Boston, there is a printed sermon, (the only copy, 
probably extant,) preached by Rev. Samuel Willard, second 
minister of the Old South Church, Boston. The title runs 
thus, — " The righteous man's death, a presage of evil ; a 
funeral sermon upon Maj. Thomas Savage, from Isaiah, lvii., 
1: 1681." 

With regard to the paternal descent of the present pastor, 
it may be remarked, that all his ancestors, from the one who 
came over, were born in Boston, for several generations, and 
were members of the Old South Church, and were engaged 
in military or mercantile pursuits. The first ministers in the 
line, are the present pastor, and Rev. William T. Savage, 
Franklin, N. H. Ezekiel Savage, Esq., father of Rev. 


Thomas Savage, was for many years a civil magistrate in 
Salem, Massachusetts, well known in Essex county. He 
died in Salem, June, 1837. The mother of Rev. Thomas 
Savage was a daughter of Col. Joseph Vose, of Milton, who 
commanded a regiment in the Revolutionary war, and had a 
horse shot under him in one of the actions connected with 
the capture of Burgoyne. The saddle-blanket, is still pre- 
served in the family, with the perforation made by the ball. 
Miss Lucy Woodruff, first wife of Rev. T. Savage, was 
descended from the Griswold family, in Connecticut. His 
present wife is daughter of the late Benj. Webster, of Haver- 
hill, N. H., whose father, William, was brother of the late 
Judge Webster, of Salisbury, N. H., who was father of the 
Hon. Daniel Webster. They came originally from Hampton, 
N. H. Julia A., daughter of Rev. Thomas Savage, married S. 
N. Robb, Esq., and now resides near Rodney, Mississippi. 

Of Ezekiel Savage, Esq., it should be added he was born 
in Boston, October 17, 1760 ; received degree at Harvard 
College, 1778. While he was a member of College, it was 
removed to Concord, Mass., the College buildings being occu- 
pied by our troops. The writer has heard him say, that 
while at College at Cambridge, he one day went to Win- 
ter Hill to see our troops that were posted there, and that 
while on the hill, a cannon ball fired from Boston, then in 
possession of the British, came so near as to throw up the 
dirt upon him. In early life he prepared for the ministry, and 
preached a short time, but want of health obliged him to 
abandon it. He studied divinity with Rev. Mr. Smith, of 
Weymouth, Mass., one of whose daughters married the first 
President Adams, and was mother of John Q,. Adams. 






Habijah, t Hannah, Thomas,! Ephraim,§ Mary, Dyonisia, Perez. 

Thomas, Scottow, Habijah,|| Elizabeth, Arthur, Faith, Lydia. 

Habijah, Hannah, Thomas, IT Arthur, Samuel 

Thomas, John, Ezekiel,** Habijah, Alexander, Hannah, Sarah 

Sarah, Margaret, Thomas, ft Mary H. John H. Ann. 

* Came over in 1635, and married Failh Hutchinson. Rev. John Cotton cays of the mother 
of Failh, — " She was well beloved, and all the faithful embraced her conference, and blessed 
God in her fruitful discourses." But he adds, »• She had two great errors, ' That the Holy 
Ghost dwells personally in a justified person, and that nothing of sanctification can help to 
evidence to believers their justification." 

t Graduated at Harvard College in 1659. Married Hannah, daughter of G. Tyng, Esq. 

I Born in 1640. 

§ Graduated at Harvard College in 1682. 

II Born in 1674. Graduated at Harvard College in 1695. 
IT Born in 1710. 

** Born in 1760. Graduated at Harvard College in 1778. 
tt Born in 1793. Graduated at Harvard College in 1813. 




The following is a list of those who have served as elders 
in the church, with the date of their election. It seems from 
the town records, that, formerly, elders were chosen in town 
meeting. A number are mentioned as being thus chosen, 
who never served. 

James Little, 
James Gilmoor, 
Benjamin Smith, 
William Moor, 
James Moor. 

Silas Dole, 
James Wallace, 
John Orr. 

David McQuesten, 

John Craig, 
John Houston, 
Phineas Aiken, 
William Moor. 

John Holbrook.* 

Stephen Thurston, 
John French, 
John Orr Houston, 
Richard Dole, 
Moody M. Stevens. 

Thomas Atwood, 
Samuel McQuesten, 
Daniel L. French. 

Daniel Mack. 

James French, 
Phineas French. 

The following is a corrected list of Members of the church. 
With regard to non-resident members, the rule adopted is 
this: — The names of those who have been absent but a 
short time have been retained, and the names of those who 
may be still living, and appear not to have removed their 
relation, but have been long absent, and reside at a great dis- 
tance, are omitted. The list is alphabetically arranged, male 
and female. 

David Atwood, 
John D. Armstrong, 
John Barr, 
William Bursiel, 
Thomas Bursiel, 
Daniel Barnard, 
Nathan Cutler, 
Stephen French, 
Leonard C. French, 
William French, 
Phineas C. French, 
John U. French, 
Frederic French, 
Solomon Gage, 
Isaac Gage, jr., 


Samuel Gardner, 
Abijah Hodgman, 
Robert Houston, 
John Houston, 
Nathan Kendall, 
Oliver Kendall, 
Nehemiah Kittridge, 
Solomon Manning, 
Joseph Manning, 
James Morrison, 
Samuel B. Needham, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Blanchard Nichols, 
Benjamin Nichols, 
Willard Parker, 

Adam N. Patten, 
William Patten, 
Gawn Riddle. 
Chandler Spofford, 
John T. Spofford, 
Brooks Shattuck,' 
David Stevens, 
Moody A. Stevens, 
William B Stevens, 
John Shepard, 
Joshua Vose, 
Joshua Vose, jr., 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Robert Walker. 
Benj. F. Wallace. 

From the third Church, Cambridge, now Brighton, Mass, 

i 60 



Margaret Adams, 
Sally Adams, 
Elizabeth Aiken, 
Martha P. Anderson, 
Anna Armstrong, 
Mary Atwood, 
Mary Atwood, 2d, 
Clarissa Barr, 
Rhoda Barr, 
Anna Baldwin, 
Margaret Chandler, 
Elizabeth Cada, 
Susan J. Clark, 
Mary J. Conant, 
Elizabeth Cutler, 
Submit Darrah, 
Cynthia Darrah, 
Charlotte Dole, 
Nancy Dow, 
Mary Dowse, 
Hannah French, 
Nancy French, 
Rhoda French, 
Harriet N. French, 
Annis C. C. French, 
Sally D. French, 
Lucy French, 
Isabella French, 
Almira N. French, 
Sarah R. French, 
Sarah French, 
Sophronia French, 
Dolly French, 
Nancy Flint, 
Dolly Gage, 

Annis Gage, 
Mary Gault, 
Nancy Gardner, 
Dolly A. Gage, 
Sally J. Gage, 
Anna Goffe, 
Jane Goffe, 
Mary E. Goffe, 
Ann J. Goodwin, 
Sally Harnden, 
Mary Harris, 
Hepzebah Harris, 
Abigail Hodgman, 
Maria Hodgman, 
Submit Holbrook, 
Nancy Houston, 
Lettice M. Houston, 
Elizabeth Kendall, 
Betsey R. Kendall, 
Sophia Mack, 
Mary A. Mack, 
Susan C. Merrill, 
Letitia Merrill, 
Jane McPherson, 
Fanny McLaughlin, 
Margaret McQuesten, 
Hannah Moore, 
Sybil Moore, 
Margaret A. Moor, 
Hannah Morrison, 
Eliza A. Morrison, 
Jerusha McLaughlin, 
Sarah E. Mullet, 
Jane Moore, 
Abigail Needham, 

Esther Nevins, 
Comfort Nichols, 
Pbebe A. Noyes, 
Sarah A. Paige, 
Mary Patten, 
Achsah Patten, 
Clarissa Patten, 
Hannah Patten, 
Jane Parker, 
Anna Parker, 
Harriet E. Putnam, 
Dolly Riddle, 
Rebecca Riddle, 
Sarah Savage, 
Lueretia Savage, 
Dolly Sanborn, 
Mary Shattuck, 
Lucy Shepard, 
Margaret Stevens, 
Sally F. Stevens, 
Mary J. Stevens, 
Abigail Stevens, 
Eunice Stevens, 
Mary Sprague, 
Mary Vose, 
Maria Vose, 
Mary Walker, 
Sarah Walker, 
Rebecca Wallace, 
Polly Wallace, 
Fanny W. Wallace, 
Olive Wallace, 
Margaret A. Wallace, 
Eliza B. G. Woodbury. 

During the last twenty-five years, there have been added 
to this church, by letter and profession, 332 members. By 
death, dismission to neighboring churches, and emigration to 
the West, united with absence of any special interest in 
religion, the number is greatly diminished. Notwithstanding 
the endeavor to make the list of members correct, there may 
still be some errors in names. 

With regard to the religious character of the people of this 
town, it may be remarked, that from the first they have been 
distinguished for their attachment to the house of God. The 
first settlers of the town, were under the necessity of attend- 
ing public worship at Londonderry. They performed the 
journey on foot, and generally carried one or two children 
with them, — a distance of twelve miles. They passed 

CHURCH. 161 

Merrimac River in a canoe, or on a raft. They did not 
always walk, though, as appears by the following incident. 
Mr. James Walker, one of the brothers that first settled the 
town, was remarkable for his attachment to the horse, and 
always kept the very best in his stable. One Sabbath 
morning, while a young man, he mounted a beautiful black 
horse, and started for meeting. He crossed the river at 
GoflVs Falls, and there found Col. John Goffe and wife, also 
about to start for meeting, in Londonderry, it being the fashion 
in those days to ride two on a horse. Col. Goffe's daughter 
Esther, was then a little girl ; she was crying to go to 
meeting with her parents, but they had no way to carry her. 
Mr. Walker saw the difficulty, and said to Mrs. Goffe, " Set 
her on behind me, and I will carry her to meeting." They 
soon had her ready, and as the Colonel handed her up behind 
Walker, he said, "She is a little girl, now, but she may be 
your wife, yet." And in fact, it turned out to be so. That 
little girl was grandmother of James Walker, Esq., of 
Piscataquog Village. 

The following circumstance is related illustrative of the 
general regard for the sanctuary. Rev. Mr. Houston and his 
neighbor, Gawn Riddle, joined, — their farms bordering on 
each other. One Saturday they met, and had some sharp 
and unneighborly talk together, about their fences and cattle. 
Some townsmen were present, and heard their altercation. 
On the next day, (Sabbath,) Mr. Riddle, was punctually at 
meeting. Some of his neighbors, who had heard the contest 
on the day before, looked astonished, and said, " Mr. Riddle, 
we thought you would not be at meeting to-day, to hear 
your neighbor Houston preach, after having such a quarrel 
with him." Said Mr. Riddle, "I 'd have ye to know, if I did 
quarrel with my neighbor Houston, yesterday, I did not 
quarrel with the gospel." 

The church has from time to time sent forth laborers in 
the vineyard of the Lord. The following are the names of 
those who have gone to preach the gospel. 

Rev. Joseph Goffe,* Millbury, Mass. Rev. C. W. Wallace, Manchester. 

" John Walker, Vermont. " Daniel L. French, Nelson. 

" Silas Aiken, Vermont, " Lemuel Spofford, Wisconsin. 

" Isaac Orr,* Never settled, " Ebenezer Chase. 

* Deceased, 


The following are the names of members of this church 
who have married ministers. 

Mrs. Philomela Garret, previously second wife of Samuel Newell, late mis- 
sionary in India. 

Mrs. Jane Harris Dunbarton. Mrs. Dolly Bryant, South Africa. 

" Mary J. Smith, Greenfield, N. H. " Nancy French.* 
" Ann Worcester, Cherokee Miss.* " Polly French, Nelson, 
" Mary Moor, Milford, N. H. " Sally Chapin, Greensborough, Vt. 

" Harriet M. G. Wood, Concord, N. H. Mrs. Mary Miltimore. 

Mrs. Sarah Eaton, now of Wilton, and Mrs. Hannah Beck- 
with, New York, — natives of the town, but not members of 
this church, also married ministers. 

1832. A Universalist Society was formed, consisting of 
forty male members. They have had preaching occasionally. 
Rev. Mr. Beckwith, now in the State of New York, and 
Rev. Mr. Hodsden, of Maine, continued longest in town. 
There was a church organized, consisting of about twelve 

1835. A Baptist Church was formed in the town, consist- 
ing at the time, (June,) of thirty-two members. Rev. Horace 
Eaton was ordained pastor of the Church, October, 1842, and 
continued till 1844. Officers of the Church when constituted, 
Ralph, and Ebenezer Holbrook, Deacons ; Thomas G. Hol- 
brook, Clerk. The brick meeting-house at the centre, 
formerly occupied by the Universalist Society, was sold by a 
vote of the Society, at auction, April 20th, 1846, for $700 to 
five individuals of the Baptist Society, viz. : Isaac Darrah, 
and the brothers Ralph, Ebenezer, Thomas G., and Abiel 


Old Presbyterian Meeting-House. — At the first settle- 
ment of the town, immediately after the old burying-ground 
was located, a long time before any portion of the town had 
been taken off to enlarge the town of Merrimac, the inhab- 
itants were anxious to have a meeting-house. Without a 
suitable place of worship, the privileges of religion cannot 
well be enjoyed. This they early felt ; it became a frequent 

* Deceased. 


subject of discussion ; and it was unanimously agreed to 
build the house on a rise of land north of the old grave-yard, 
which took the name of meeting-house hill, and is so called 
to this day. Between this time, 1737, and 1750, the town of 
Merrimac had been incorporated, 1745, and a large tract of 
land had been taken off, on the southern part of Bedford, to 
enlarge the town of Merrimac. On this account, the^inhab- 
itants of Bedford were under the necessity of changing their 
location for a place of worship, to one more central. 

At a meeting held at Matthew Patten's barn, Jan. 24th, 
1750, it was, " Voted, — To build a meeting-house, either at 
the east or west side of the Bell hill, so called, on the 9th or 
10th range, provided John Bell and John McLaughlin would 
give 2 acres of land, accommodated also with a road-land." 
J. Bell lived on lot No. 9, at the west end of Bell hill ; [J. 
Bell, the father, it is said, lived on the east end, where the 
ruins of an old cellar are still seen.] J. McLaughlin lived at 
east end of said hill, on lot No. 10, and the old road lay near 
where the brick school-house now stands, on lot 'No. 10, and 
ran up on the brow of the west end of said hill. 

Not being able to agree on which of the two places the 
house should be built, at a town-meeting, called April 15th, 
1752, " Voted, — That Capt. Andrew "Todd, Capt. John 
Mitchell, and Lieut. Robert Cochran, all of Londonderry, be 
a committee to locate the spot, at the east or west end of 
Bell hill, on lot No. 9 or 10." 

At an adjourned meeting, held Thursday. May 7th, 1752, 
the above Committee made their report, as follows : — 

" To the Proprietors, freeholders, and inhabitants, of Bed- 
ford: Gentlemen, — That, whereas you were pleased to 
choose us, the Subscribers, a Committee to judge in regard of 
two places to set your meeting-house on, (viz. :) at the east 
or west end of Mr. Bell's hill ; and our judgment is this, 
That we look upon the east end of said hill, at or near 
where the Stake stood, to be the most convenient place ; and 
for this or these reasons, — Because it is a little more con- 
venient for the present inhabitants, who have borne the 
burden and heat of the day ; and we look upon the west 
end of the hill to be but a piece of poor, dry, barren ground, 
and exceedingly much exposed to the west and north-west 
winds, very hard to be suffered here in this, our cold climate. 
And, Gentlemen, this is our joint judgment in regard of these 


two places, and hope you will be as unanimous about the 
place, as we have been, which is from, Gentlemen, your 
hearty and sincere friends, 

Andrew Todd, 
John Mitchell, 
Robert Cochran." 

(Directed,) " To Mr. Samuel Patten, Moderator of a 
meeting to be holden the seventh day of May next, by 
adjournment, at Bedford. To be communicated." 

At this meeting, the old building committee were dismissed 
and a new one appointed, but nothing was accomplished till 
1754, when this committee also was dismissed, and a new one 
appointed. At a meeting held at William Holmes' barn, on 
Monday, April 15, 1754, a new location was contemplated, on 
land of Noah Thayer. In the meantime, the last committee 
had got a house-frame hewed, and drawn to the west side of 
the Bell hill, near where Joseph Bell's cider-mill used to 
stand, on lot No. 9. Here the frame lay, until a meeting was 
called at John Bell's Barn, 22d September, 1755, when it 
was " Voted, unanimously, That all votes and conclusions that 
have been voted and concluded, concerning fixing a place to 
build a meeting-house on, in this town, be, and hereby are, 
null and void." 

These particulars are given, to show that the people 
encountered the usual difficulties in deciding on a building- 
spot. They even put an article into the town-warrant, at 
the above meeting to refer the subject to a Committee from the 
General Court, but it was decided in the negative. At the 
above meeting, " Voted, unanimously, That the meeting-house 
be built on a piece of land which William Moor bought from 
Noah Thayer for the town, for that purpose, and being part of 
Nos. 13 and 14, in the 10th range, in said Bedford." 

The following is a copy of the Deed from Noah Thayer to 
William Moor. 

"Consideration of £1. 6s. Lawful money, in behalf of 
Bedford town. A certain piece of land in Bedford, containing 
1J acres and sixteen rods, by measure, lying in the 13th and 
14th lots, in 10th range, said piece of land being 13 rods in 
length, and 12 rods in breadth, each line being strait. Said 
piece being 9 rods on 13th lot, and 4 rods on 14th lot, 


which makes the length of said piece of land, including the 
highway, of 3 rods from the said lot, to the 9th range, 
between said 13th and 14th lots ; said piece of land being 
intended for the use of the said town of Bedford, for a meet- 
ing-house for the worship of God in that place, and other 
public use in said town, to be and be held. 

(Dated,) " 13th September, 1755. 

" Lib. 52, Fol. 348." 

This effort was successful. The meeting-house was 
raised on the spot last designated, where it now stands, on 
the 14th and 15th October, 1755. A man by the name of 
Warren, hewed the frame. The first day they raised the 
house up to the plates, and put on all the beams but two ; the 
second day finished raising. It was 40 by 50 feet, and two 
stories high. The meeting-house was finished very gradually, 
as will appear by the following votes, which are given here, as 
matter of curiosity, and as furnishing a striking contrast with 
the modern, railroad despatch in doing business. 

March 13th, 1757. "Voted, — That Capt. Moses Barron, 
Robert Walker, and Samuel Patten, be a committee for 
boarding and shingling the meeting-house." S. Patten 
declined, and William Moor was put in his place. John Bell, 
jr., and John Wallace, were a committee to provide glass 
and sashes ; Hugh Riddle was employed to underpin and do 
the stone-work. 

June 6, 1760. "Voted, — Benjamin Smith, Gawn Riddle, 
and James Little, be a committee to seat the meeting-house 
with long seats." For a number of years the people sat on 
long seats, — males probably on one side of the house, and 
females on the other. " Seating the house," as the phrase 
was, was an annual custom in some parts of Massachusetts 
and Connecticut. The members of the Congregation were 
seated every year, according to age, rank or property. The 
chief seat was the first pew at the right hand, entering at the 
front door. 

Jan. 16, 1764. " Voted, — To build a pulpit, and that 
Matthew Patten, John Wallace, and John Bell, be a committee 
to build it." Thomas Warren made the pulpit in 1766. 

March, 1767. " Voted, — That the same committee who 
built the pulpit, paint it, and paint it the same color the Rev. 
Mr. McGregor's pulpit is, in Londonderry." 


It appears that Glass and Oil for the meeting-house, had 
been obtained sometime in 1766, but not wishing to use it 
then, it had been lent out to the various inhabitants of the 
town, by Matthew Little. The following may seem too 
minute for insertion here, but as a transcript of the times and 
showing the estimation put upon glass in those times, when it 
was scarce and costly, it may not be without interest. 

June, 1768. " The meeting-house glass lent out ; Mat- 
thew Little's account of the same. David Moore had from 
Matthew Little, six squares of the meeting-house glass ; Dan- 
iel Moor had 4 squares of the same, Dea. Gillmore had of the 
same, 24 squares. November 20, 176S, The Rev. Mr. 
John Houston, had 24 squares of the same ; Hugh Campbell 
had 12 squares of the same ; Dea. Smith is to pay Whitfield 
Gillmore 6 squares of the same ; James Wallace had 15 
squares of the same ; John Bell had 9 squares of the same ; 
Joseph Scobey, one quart of oil. 

" A true record : 

"Attest. William White, Town Clerk." 


At a meeting held April, 1784, it was voted to let out and 
sell the wall pew-ground, to any inhabitant of Bedford only, 
and that the money arising from the same, be expended in 
finishing the meeting-house, and if there should not be 
enough, the same be expended in supplying the pulpit. One 
condition of the sale was that the purchaser should not be 
allowed to sell it to any person, unless an inhabitant of 

In about twenty years, the house was completed ; for we 
find, September 27, 1785, the meeting-house being finished 
according to vote, they vendued off to the highest bidder, all 
but the minister-pew, and his name was put on that. Sam- 
uel Vose, Vendue-master, and Josiah Gillis, Clerk of the 
meeting. Maj. John Dunlap was the workman who finished 
the pews. There were 27 pews sold on the pew-ground, 
the highest selling at $36, and the lowest at $23,50, on the 
lower floor. In the gallery, 16 pews; highest price, $13, 
lowest, $5,50. Some additional improvements were made 
from time to time, such as green velvet for the pulpit cushion, 
in 1792 : and in 1S02, a pew for the singers in the front 
gallery. In 1813, some of the long seats for the aged, were 
made into body pews. 


In 1838, the old meeting-house was remodelled, the lower 
part being appropriated for a Town-house, and the upper part 
for a School-room and Selectmen's room. The estimated 
expense was $530,32. The house was turned round, and 
moved back twenty-five or thirty feet. The whole work 
was not completed till August 1839, when it was voted to 
let the lower part for public worship, and the upper part for 
a school-room. 

Neio Presbyterian Meeting-House. — As some readers may 
be ready to think the following details too minute, it should 
be remembered that though not of so much interest now, yet 
to those who live a hundred years hence, they may be matter 
of curiosity, and even of value ; especially if the meeting- 
house be permitted to stand till that time. The first public 
intimation about a new meeting-house, we have as follows. 

"Notice is hereby given, that the inhabitants of Bedford 
are requested to meet at the old meeting-house in said Bed- 
ford, on Tuesday, 29th day of August, current, at 4 o'clock, 
P. M. : — To see what method they will take, to pay the 
expenses of installing Rev. Thos. Savage : — To devise some 
way to collect the subscription money for Rev. Thos. Sav- 
age : — And to see if they are desirous of building a new 
meeting-house. Peter P. Woodbury. 

"Bedford, 2%d August, 1826." 

There was, however, no decided action on the subject of a 
new house ; it remained a subject of occasional discussion, 
but nothing was done till the 19th April, 1831, at which date 
the following measure was adopted. 

"We the subscribers do associate and agree for the purpose 
of building a meeting-house. The condition of this paper is 
to obtain subscribers for fifty shares in said house ; and when 
said shares are taken, Doct. P. P. Woodbury will call a 
meeting of the subscribers, for the purpose of locating the 
spot for said house ; which location is to be made by a 
majority of the share-holders, each share to count one vote, 
and of choosing a building committee, to carry the plan into 
effect ; each share to be assessed and paid as the money is 
wanted, as in their wisdom they shall direct when assembled. 
And we, the undersigned, do agree, for the above pur- 



pose, to take the number of shares set against our names, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 
William Patten, 
James Walker, 
Stephen Thurston, 
Isaac Gage, 
James French, 
Daniel L. French, 
John Houston, 
John W. Barnes, 
John D. Riddle, 
Samuel Chandler, 
John Armstrong, 
Stephen French, jr. 
John French, 
Moses Noyes, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Phineas Aiken, 
Nehemiah Kittredge, 
John P. Houston, 

Daniel Gordon, 
Cyrus W. Wallace, 
Samuel McQuesten, 
Josiah Walker, 
Willard Parker, 
David Atwood, 
John Houston, jr. 
Isaac Atwood, jr. 
William Riddle, jr. 
Nathan Cutler, 
Aaron Gage, 
William Chandler, 
Eleazer Dole, 
William Moor, jr. 
John Patten, 
John Holbrook, 
F. A. Mitchell, 
John Craig, 
Jesse Hartwell, 

Isaac Riddle, 
Daniel Mack, 
Richard Dole, 
John G. Moor, 
Samuel Patten, 
Leonard C. French, 
Hugh Riddle, 
Rufus Houston, 
William Riddle, 
Joshua Vose, 
William P. Riddle, 
David Stevens, jr. 
Moody M. Stevens, 
Rufus Merrill, 
Isaac Gage, jr., 
Ebenezer French, 
Solomon Woods, 
Benjamin Nichols. 

These subscribed for one share each, making fifty-six. 
(A true copy,) " Samuel Chandler, Clerk." 

The above subscribers held a meeting at Capt. Isaac Rid- 
dle's hall, May 9th, 1831. Dea. John Holbrook, Chairman, 
Samuel Chandler, Clerk. A committee was chosen, consisting 
of Uoct. P. P. Woodbury, Mr. James Walker, Ebenezer 
French, John French, and Capt. John Patten, to ascertain 
on what terms a suitable spot could be obtained, on which to 
erect the meeting-house ; which committee reported, that "an 
acre of land, east of Capt. William Riddle's, at the Oak trees, 
may be had without any expense ; that an acre of land on 
the hill north of the road, and west of the burying-ground. 
can be had for one hundred dollars ; that an acre east of the 
burying-ground, and between that and Isaac Riddle's store, 
can be had for one hundred dollars ; or, that an acre can be 
had north of the school-house, (near the Baptist meeting- 
house,) for one hundred and fifty dollars." These four 
described places were numbered from 1 to 4, and voted for by 
ballot; No. 1, that north of the school-house; No. 2, 
between, the store and burying-ground ; No. 3, on the 
middle hill ; No. 4, east of Capt. William Riddle's. The 
vote was as follows : — No. 1, had three votes; No. 2. thirty 
votes ; No. 3, two votes, and No. 4, four votes. 

May 28, 1831. The shareholders formed themselves into 
a regular society, adopted a constitution and by-laws, and 


organized by the choice of officers, agreeably to an act of 
the Legislature of the State, passed July 3d, 1S27. A super- 
intending building committee was chosen, consisting of Capt. 
William Patten, Dr. P. P. Woodbury, Col. William Moor, 
Capt. John Patten, and John G. Moor, with which committee 
it was left discretionary to make any alteration as to the size 
of the house, basement-story, and general construction, as 
they may think best, and to finish the work at their discre- 
tion. In the meantime, the society, rejecting all other 
locations, voted to build the contemplated house on the 
Houston hill ; the title to the land being more satisfactory. 
The committee made a contract with Thomas Kennedy, of 
Goffstown, N. H., to build a meeting-house, 71 feet in length, 
by 51 in width, to be finished according to a plan exhibited; 
the said Kennedy to do all the work, outside and in, to find 
all the materials for the same, finishing of the windows, 
glass, doors, painting, the belfry, plastering and brick-work, 
shingling, boarding, and the qualities of stock, &c. 

" The undertaker agrees to do everything, whether 
expressed in the agreement or not, that ought to be done, and 
in a workmanlike manner ; and to have the work completed 
in September, 1S32. For the above work, the Committee 
agree to pay $3700. (Signed.) 

P. P. Woodbury, ~) „ .,,. 

nrr rt ( Building 

Wm. Fatten, > ~ ...° 

t n ™ \ Committee. 

John G. Moor, ) 

Thomas Kennedy, Undertaker. 

A true copy, Samuel Chandler, Clerk" 

The basement-story underpinning was done by Benjamin 
Riddle, for $418. The finishing of basement-story was done 
by J. Langley, at an expense of $321. The frame was 
raised on the spot where the house now stands, June 20, 
1832. Rev. Mr. Savage offered prayer, Dr. Woodbury made 
an address on the occasion. The house was raised without 
the use of intoxicating liquors, and the whole work was 
accomplished without a single accident, even to the bruising 
of a finger. The house was solemnly dedicated to the 
worship of God, on Christmas day, Dec. 25, 1832. The 
pastor of the church preached on the occasion, from Haggai, 
ii, 9. Rev. Mr. Aiken, of Amherst, and Rev. Mr. Adams, fo 


Londonderry, took part in the exercises. The day was 
pleasant, and a numerous audience attended. # 

January 14, 1833. The pews were disposed of by sale, 
one pew being reserved for the minister, to be by him selected. 
The pews were sold to the highest bidder for their choice. 
An appraisal had been previously made, and whatever was 
bid over and above, was added to the appraisal, as the price 
of the pew. It had also been agreed that if the pews should 
sell for more than enough to pay for the house, the surplus 
should be appropriated for the purchase of a bell for said 
house : and if there should still be money remaining, it should 
go for building a parsonage. At this public sale, 85 pews 
were sold, and money enough raised beyond the estimated 
expense of the building, to purchase a bell. The remaining 
pews being disposed of, except two or three reserved, the 
aggregate result thus stood : 

Whole number of pews, 91. 

Of these 88 were sold for, $5200,00 

Amount sold exceeding appraisal, ----- 527,00 

Whole Amount received, $5727,00 

The house was warmed originally by a furnace. This 
was taken out about ten years since, and its place supplied by 

Brick Meeting-house. — Built, 1835, and finished, 1836. 
Dedicated, July 1st, 1836; Sermon by Rev. Mr. Hodsden. 
The dimensions of this house are as follows: 40 feet wide, 
50 feet long, one story high. The mason-work was by 
James McPherson ; stone-work by George Fletcher, and 
wood-work by Thomas Kennedy and Joseph Little, both of 
Goffstown. This house was built by the Universalist Society 
at the cost of $2000. In 1S46, it was sold to the Baptist 
Society, who occasionally occupy it as a place of worship. 

Piscataquog Meeting-house. — James Parker, Esq., Gen. 
William P. Riddle, and Mr. Jonathan Palmer, superintended 
the building of this house, the frame of which was raised in 
May, 1820. The timber for the frame was hewn, framed 
and raised by Dea. Heath of Sutton. A Mr. Kimball, of 

* See Appendix. 


Hopkinton, finished the house, outside and in. It was dedi- 
cated to the worship of God, and a sermon delivered by Rev. 
E. P. Bradford, Nov. 15, 1820, at which time there was good 
sleighing. No minister has ever been settled here as pastor, 
but in former years there was a stated supply for months at a 
time, and to the present day, there is occasionally a third 
service on the Sabbath. 

March 29, 1842. The upper part was modelled into an 
Academy, the lower part being still retained for public wor- 
ship. It is a neat edifice, of good architectural proportions, 
and besides its important uses, adds much to the beauty of 
the village. 




The Old Graveyard, at the south-east part of the town, 
was made use of to deposit the dead, from the first settlement 
in 1737. Here were laid the first settlers of the town, with 
their children ; here sleep the forefathers and their families. 

April 14, 1752. At a town-meeting held in Matthew 
Patten's barn, it was " Voted, To fence the burying-ground, 
and that it be fenced 10 rods square, with stonewall; the 
wall to be 5 feet high." John Orr, John Moor, and Hugh 
Riddle, were the committee to see the work done. " They 
shall employ the inhabitants of the town to do the work ; a 
man to have fifteen shillings a day, and oxen ten shillings 

old tenor. Each laborer to begin work at 8 o'clock, A. M., in 
the months of August, September, and October." It was 
voted at the same time to pay for a moor cloth, or pall. 80 
pounds were appropriated for building the wall, and the 
ground was to be cleared at the expense of the town. The 
oldest inscriptions now found in the yard, are Ann Burns, 
July, 1745 ; John, father of Hon. Matthew Patten, April, 
1746; Catherine Bell, 1746; also, John Gorfe, father of Col. 
Goffe, and John Bell, 1746. At the period of 1760, there 
had been numerous interments. It is now, (1850,) occasion- 
ally used as a burying-place. Though in an unfrequented 
part of the town, it is an interesting spot, and with certain 
improvements, might be made a place of solemn resort and 
profitable meditation. Here, within sound of the railroad 
whistle, the forefathers sleep. Here we stand, where tears 
were shed a hundred years ago for departed friends. Here is 
still the old stone horse-block, where mothers and wives and 
sisters mounted, having followed in procession some loved 
one to the grave. Here are the gravestones of the first 
minister, and the elders, who often consulted together for the 
welfare of the church. 


The Central Graveyard, has been in use 50 years. The 
first body buried in this yard, was that of a son of Isaac 
Riddle, Esq., Oct. 8, 1799. Mr. Riddle gave half an acre of 
land for the purpose. In 1847, half an acre more of land 
was obtained, and a stone wall built on the north, south, and 
west sides, and on the east side, a stone and wooden fence, 
with iron posts. It is a solemn, interesting spot, and had it 
been laid out at first with a view to walks and alleys, it 
would have added much to its attractions as a cemetery. As 
it is it well repays the visitor. The inscriptions are often 
impressive to a stranger. To notice one ; — 





WHO DIED FEB. 22, 1810, 

AGED 25. 

The name being the same with the Scottish poet, his 
being a member of College, and his early death, all create an 
interest, and the interest is increased, when it is known that 
he was a young man of great promise, and at the time of his 
death, was instructing a district school in town, to help pay 
his way in College. One other epitaph may be given ; very 
appropriate, probably a selection. It is on a young lady who 
died of consumption, aged 20. 

" A marble marks thy couch of lowly sleep, 
And living statues there are seen to weep, 
Affliction's semblance bends not o'er thy tomb, 
Affliction's self deplores thy youthful doom." 

West Parish Graveyard. — The land was given by Jesse 
Worcester, Esq. The first burial there, was Hannah, an 
infant child of Mr. Benjamin Sprague, June 9, 17S9. The 
oldest gravestone to be seen, is that of Mr. David French, 
father of Dea. John French, June 13, 1 790. 

South Graveyard. — The land for this yard was given by 
Maj. Stephen Dole. The first burial in it was a child of 
Silas Martin. The oldest inscription found there is William 
Gerrish, February 20, 1793, and Judith Gerrish. October 
10, 1794. 


Piscataquog- Village Graveyard. — William Parker, Esq., 
gave half an acre of land for this purpose. The first inter- 
ment was that of a child of James Griffin, 1814; the second 
was that of Edward, son of Wm. Parker, Esq., April 8th, 1815. 

These are all the public burial-places in the town. A 
Roman Catholic cemetery, for Manchester, has [lately been 
laid out, a little west of Piscataquog-village, on land lately 
owned by A. J. Dow, and formerly belonging to the Parker 
estate. On the Beard place, (so called,) now owned by Gen. 
Riddle, are a few graves, belonging to the Lincoln family. 
In 1836, a human skeleton was dug up, by Mr. Willard 
Parker, at the fork of the road, near his house. On the place 
occupied by Mr. Ames, west of the Catholic Cemetery, are 
two or three graves. 


The subject of common school education very early 
engaged the attention of the people of this town. On 
recurring to the town books we find the following record : — 
" March 28, 1753. Voted, to have a school kept six months, 
the ensuing year in the town." The next year the town 
voted to have a school kept eight months during the year. 
The division of the time in different parts of the town is 
curious : — " Voted, to have the school kept this year in the 
following manner, beginning at the south-westerly corner of 
the town, and to continue there one month, and then to be 
kept at the north-easterly corner one month, and so alter- 
nately, one month in each of the aforementioned places, in 
rotation as before mentioned, until the whole eight months 
be completed." 

June 28, 1755. " Voted, not to have a school this year." 
What was the occasion of such a vote, the only one of the 
kind on record, cannot now be known. The schools were 
then kept in private dwelling houses, and children had to go 
a great distance. The first school house erected in the town, 
stood on an eminence about a quarter of a mile north of the 
place now owned by Mr. Samuel Patten, then belonging to 
John Orr, Esq. It is said some of the material of the old 
building forms part of the barn of Mr. Calvin Snow. Among 
the names of the early school teachers, that of O'Neil, is 
handed down as memorable. Many a luckless urchin smarted 
under the effects of his discipline. Among those who have 


been distinguished as teachers in this town, should be men- 
tioned the name of Ann Orr. For about half a century she 
taught in various districts of this and other towns, with ac- 
ceptance and success. As a teacher of children, she was 
almost without an equal, and she will long be remembered 
by a multitude who enjoyed her instructions. 

The following anecdote was related of Miss Orr, at the 
Centennial Celebration, by the President of the day: — "I 
once had," she said, " a lad in my school, who troubled me 
very much. He would not get his lesson, though he ap- 
peared not to be idle. I kept my eye on him a day or two ; 
I had an article he wanted ; I said to him, James, if you will 
get me a perfect lesson you shall have that article. At the 
time of recitation I had a perfect lesson. Now, James, I see 
you have a good mind, as good, if not better than any in 
school, I shall always expect, and I intend to have, perfect 
lessons ever after this ; and it was so, I had no more trouble 
with James." 

The following poetical tribute to Miss Orr, is from one of 
her scholars. It is an extract from a poem, too long for a 
place in this volume : — 

" Near half a century flitted by, 
The summer's sweetness, winter's sigh 
Still found her at her chosen post, 
To educate the youthful host. 
Her labor's o'er, but memory still 
Will feel a deep and touching thrill, 
As back it passes to those days 
When we indulg'd in jocund plays." 

Miss Orr was an extraordinary character ; what she lacked 
in the graces of refinement, she made up in strength and 
vigor of thought and action. In conversation, she was 
always sensible and animated. At times she was masculine 
in her bearing ; but her active usefulness with many excellent 
qualities, made ample amends for the want of that softness 
that belongs to the female character. 

There are now fifteen school districts in the town — of 
which one extends into Merrimac, another into Amherst. 

Piscataquog Academy was incorporated in 1847 ; it has 
a Board of Officers and Trustees ; it is situated in a pleas- 
ant village, and has been useful and prosperous. The gen- 
tlemen who have taken charge of it successively, are Dr. 
Leonard French, D. C, Fitchburg, Mass. ; Hiram Wason, 


Esq., D. C, Charles Warren, H. U., Benj. F. Wallace, Esq., D. 
C, Bedford ; Mr. Amos Abbot, once missionary in India. 
This academy went into operation in 1842 ; Messrs. Walker, 
Bowman, Stark and Riddle, of the village, were among the 

Select schools have been sustained in other parts of the 
town ; at the centre, Miss Adeline Willey taught with suc- 
cess ; she married Mr. Charles Aiken, of this town, and now 
resides in Wisconsin. Rev. J. C. Bryant, A. C, formerly 
pastor of the church in Littleton, Mass., now missionary in 
South Africa, taught at the centre with success. Mr. J. W. 
Pilsbury, D. C, now residing at Milford, N. H., and Rev. 
Mr. Turner, then from the Seminary at Andover, now min- 
ister in Iowa, instructed select schools at the centre of the 
town. At the west part of the town, Rev. Mr. Wilder mis- 
sionary in India, and Rev. Mr. Kendall, now Professor of 
Jackson College, Illinois, from the seminary at Andover, 
taught select schools. To these should be added the names 
of Dodge, and Rev. A. W. Bumham, once teachers of note 
in this town. 


At a town meeting, held June 11, 1759, " Voted, Robert 
Walker, Hugh Riddle, and John Moor, be a committee to 
build a Bridge across Piscataquog river," which was built 
near where the bridge now stands. 

Jan. 22, 1770. Maj. John Gone was employed by the 
town to build the second bridge over Piscataquog river. It 
was raised July 16, 1770, and they finished laying the plank, 
Dec. 12, 1770. It was built near the former. While raising 
the bridge, six men were thrown off, of whom Mr. Holmes, 
Mr. Dugal, and Joseph Moor, were seriously injured, the 
latter so much so, that he died in thirty hours. 

Nov. 17S5. " Voted, John Patten, Adam Dickey, Joseph 
Patten, Lieut. John Orr, Ens. John Riddle, be a committee 
to repair or rebuild the Piscataquog Bridge, and build it near 
the same height as the present one, or as they may see 

Nov. 1795. Chose a committee consisting of Benj Barron, 
Lieut. John Riddle, Lieut. John Patten, John Orr, Esq., and 
Mr. James Darrah, to build a new bridge. This committee 


was to sell the work to the lowest bidder, and the construc- 
tion was to conform to a plan exhibited ; the bridge to be 
finished by June 1, 1796. It does not appear from the min- 
utes of the meeting who built the bridge ; but at a meeting 
held March 23, 1796, John Orr, Mr. Joseph Patten, and Maj. 
Stephen Dole, were a committee appointed to inspect the 
timber and workmanship of the rebuilding of Piscataquog 
Bridge. They reported to the town at the next meeting after 
the bridge was finished, Aug. 29, 1796 ; and the town ac- 
cepted the report of the committee, which recommended to 
allow David Riddle $2,00 for extra work and timber on said 
bridge, from which it seems that David Riddle must have 
been the builder in 1796. 

March 26, IS 12. Isaac Riddle, Samuel Chandler, and 
William Moor, were appointed a committee to build Piscata- 
quog Bridge, the north abutment to be of split stone, (the 
south abutment being built of stone the year before,) with a 
middle pier built of wood, with good and substantial railing, 
stringers and plank. Win. Riddle, Esq., was the builder of 
this bridge, which was completed in the summer of 1813 
or '14. 

Oct. 17, 1828. A committee was chosen, consisting of 
Capt. Wm. Patten, Col. Wm. P. Riddle, and Jonas B. Bow- 
man, Esq., to rebuild Piscataquog Bridge. This committee 
were authorized to draw money not exceeding $300, if ne- 
cessary. Builder, John P. Houston, in 1829. 

Oct. 4, 1842, a committee was chosen consisting of Fred. 
G. Stark, James Walker, and Wm. P. Riddle, to reconstruct 
and rebuild Piscataquog Bridge. This is the bridge now in 
use, the abutments on both sides the river were widened, a 
lattice, similar to the granite bridge, made, and the whole 
finished as a bridge ought to be in such a thoroughfare of 
travel. It was completed in 1843. 

In connection with this subject, the following vote is im- 
portant : — 

March 10, 1835. " Voted, That any highway district, that 
will build their bridges with stone abutments, and cover the 
water courses with good substantial stone arches, so that the 
town will not hereafter be called upon to furnish timber and 
plank, for the repair of such bridges, such district shall 
receive from the town treasurer, the amount of money such 
bridge would cost the town for timber and plank for the term 
of twenty years. And for the better security of the town, 


the stone work of such bridge or bridges shall be done to the 
satisfaction of the Selectmen, for the time being, or of such 
committee as the town may choose for that purpose. And as 
the splitting and preparing stone for such bridges will require 
some stone-tools and iron work, it is further provided, that 
the Selectmen may advance a part of the money, at their 
discretion, to enable such district to prosecute the work to its 
completion. The better to enable the several districts to judge 
whether they will be able to build their bridges of stone, the 
Selectmen are hereby ordered, while taking the invoice, the 
present year, to estimate the yearly expense to the town in 
timber and plank for the several bridges in town." 

By the good effect of this vote, the town is not obliged, 
except in a few instances, to supply timber and plank for small 
bridges ; stone arches and stone stringers having been thrown 
over most of the streams in Bedford. 


These mementoes of ancient times are still seen in our 
country towns, but they are falling into disuse compared with 
former years. 

At the first town-meeting, Jan. 8, 1750, to accept the char- 
ter, it was " Voted, to build a Pound near Samuel Patten's." 
This Pound was built of logs, and stood about eight rods 
south-west of Samuel Patten's house, on the second piece of 
land cleared in town. The last trace of this rude receptacle 
of strays, are probably not within the recollection of any now 

April 28, 17S6. " Voted, to build a new Pound, of stone, 
on the south-west corner of the Common, by the meeting- 
house, 32 feet square, and 7 feet high. Building committee, 
James Wallace, John Riddle, and John Houston, Jr. The 
committee to employ such men as will answer to build said 
Pound, and they be paid by order on the Treasurer." 

March 28, 1809. " The Selectmen shall be a committee 
to fix the place and vendue the building of a new pound." 
The location selected, was where it is now standing, north of 
the Riddle mills, near the stone school-house. 

MILLS. 179 


Before any mills were erected in Bedford, the inhabitants 
were under the necessity of going to Dunstable to get their 
grain ground, at Chamberlain's Mill, at the "harbor," south 
of Nashua Village. After this, Chamberlain erected mills at 
Merrimac, near the mouth of Souhegan river, and here the 
Bedford people were better accommodated. 

About 1745, Col. John Goffe, who used to live at Derry- 
field, opposite Goffe's falls, moved to Bedford, on the farm 
formerly the residence of Theodore Goffe, Esq., and more 
recently owned by Jonas B. Bowman, Esq. There he built a 
grain mill, near the mouth of Crosby's brook, which mill was 
resorted- to by the people of Goffstown and New-Boston. In a 
few years he built a saw-mill, near the grain-mill ; soon after 
this, John Wallace built a saw-mill on the same stream, near 
where the road now passes from Bedford centre to the vil- 
lage. Elisha Lincoln built a saw-mill, east of the Gordon- 
house, on the same stream. Some time after, this mill was taken 
down by Josiah Gordon, and re-erected about one hundred 
rods north, near where David Atwood's turning and shingle 
mill now stands. Mr. Boies built a saw and grain-mill near 
the school-house, in district No. 6, on the same stream. At 
the head of the meadows, Samuel Vose built a mill. The 
brothers, Cyrus W. and Frederic Wallace, built a turning- 
mill near where John Wallace had his saw-mill. David At- 
wood has at the present time, 1850, a turning and shingle- 
mill in operation. 

These mills are on the same stream of water, and there are 
individuals in town who have known seven running and 
doing business at the same time. On the same stream and 
at the mouth of Crosby's brook, Richard Dole built a fulling- 
mill, and manufactured and dressed woollen cloth in great 
quantities. Within a few years, this mill (not by an 'excel- 
sior ' process,) has been turned into a cider-mill, where, by 
water power one hundred bushels of apples can be ground 
in one hour, and converted into cider. On this stream, Jonas 
B. Bowman, Esq., built a grain and saw-mill of expensive 
and superior workmanship, which was consumed by fire in 
1844. At the same place was a bark-mill, connected with a 
tannery, owned by Mr. Wm. Goffe, which was burned at the 
same time. On the same stream and near the same place, 
Theodore Goffe, Esq., and Bernice Pritchard had a mill. 


On Piscataquog River, the first mill was built by one Da- 
vidson, brother-in-law to Robert Walker, which was swept 
away. About the year 1775, Mr. John Little built a grain 
and a saw-mill. Dea. Benjamin Smith built a grain-mill near 
his house, in the south part of the town, about the year 
1778 ; this mill was in operation in 1818. Col. Daniel Moor 
built a saw and grain-mill, on the stream near his house, about 
the year 1770. These mills were taken down by Robert 
Wallace, about 1805. 

Sarah Riddle, who afterwards married Dea. James Wallace, 
was employed to tend the grain-mill, by Col. Daniel Moor. 
His direction to Sarah was, never to take toll from a widow's 
grist, or a man who brought his grain on his back. " But," 
said she, " I always felt vexed when two bushels of grain 
came in one bag." 

Mr. Thomas At wood built a grain and saw-mill, with cir- 
cular saws, &c, in 1833, near the one erected by Col. Moor; 
this mill is now owned by Capt. Hale. 

About the year 1780, John Orr, Esq., built a saw-mill on 
his farm about one hundred rods above Smith's grain-mill, on 
the same stream. John Riddle built a grain and saw-mill on 
the same stream, near where they now stand, the grain-mill 
having lately been turned into a shingle and turning mill. 
These mills have lately been purchased by Mr. Damon, of 
Amherst, and put into good repair, and are now in successful 

Mr. Farley has a mill for turning, boring and sawing, in 
the wheelwright business, on a branch of the same stream, 

The " James Gilmore Mill," not now in being, was located 
on the same stream, one mile above the one last mentioned, 
not far from this were the " Chubbuck Mills," so called. 

James Darrah built a saw and grain-mill near his house, 
south-east corner of the town, on a stream of water coming 
out of Sebbins' pond, and near where it empties into Merri- 
mac River. These mills are now in successful operation. 

William Moor built a saw and grain-mill on the same 
stream as above, one hundred rods north, now owned and 
carried on by Daniel Ferguson. 

Josiah Walker built a saw-mill on his farm, near Merrimac 
River, now in operation. Wm. Patten built a saw-mill two 
hundred rods above the one just mentioned, which has since 
been removed. 


In another part of the town, Dea. Phineas Aiken built a 
saw-mill on the stream running through his farm. It is now 
in 'existence and is owned by the brothers John and Franklin 
Shepard, who have two saw-mills and a shingle-mill in suc- 
cessful operation. On the same stream, Sewell Stratton built 
a saw-mill in 1S45, about one mile and a half above Shep- 
ard's Mills, which is doing well. 

There was formerly a saw-mill near where M. M. Stevens 
now lives, that once did considerable business. 


July 16, 1770. Joseph Moor was killed at the raising of 
Piscataquog Bridge. 

May 5th, 1775. John Patterson was killed at the raising 
of Lieut. J. Little's barn. At another time, his brother, Rob- 
ert Patterson, had been at the raising of M. Patten's barn, 
and on the same day was drowned in the Merrimac. Several 
individuals, at different times have been drowned in this 
river ; in one instance a party were crossing in a boat in the 
evening, opposite the Goife place, the boat was upset, and Mrs. 
Griffin and two men were drowned ; Mrs. Griffin was a 
daughter of Maj. John Goffe. 

Many casualties, no doubt, have occurred from time to time 
since the settlement of the town, that have gone into oblivion. 
For instance, we find the following entry in Matthew Pat- 
ten's Journal. 

June 2, 1766. " John Frain was found in the eddy below 
Patterson's brook, and I was notified as a Selectman to go 
see him buried." 

About 1776 or 7, Luke Eagan, who, at the time was keep- 
ing school in Bedford, at or near Capt. Thos. Chandler's, was 
returning one Sabbath evening in the winter, from London- 
derry, where he had been to spend the Sabbath with Rev. 
Mr. Davidson, and after crossing the river, was misled into a 
wood-path, and was found dead next morning not far from 
John G. Moor's, probably overcome by cold. This man 
had been well educated in the Roman Catholic Church, and 
had taken priest's orders, but having become a Protestant, he 
was excommunicated. He had served a short time in the 


Revolutionary war. On the Monday morning after his death, 
the scholars assembled as usual, and about 10 o'clock, A. M« 
his body was discovered by some men passing that way. 

About the year 1791 or 2, at a training at the centre, Joseph 
Bell had his ankle shattered by firing a cannon, which made 
him lame for life. 

There have been, in this town, some cases of successful 
surgery worthy of record. 

March 26, 1822. Dr. P. P. Woodbury was called to .the 
son of Capt. Rums Merrill, two years old, who was suffoca- 
ted, apparently, from some foreign substance in the trachea or 
throat. A probang was passed into the stomach through the 
oesophagus or swallow, but to no good effect. The child had 
frequent fits of suffocation, and would lay perfectly senseless. 
The Doctor performed the operation of tracheotomy. An 
incision being made into the windpipe, a white bean of the 
largest size was extracted, perfectly dry ; it had been in the 
trachea two hours. During the operation the child was 
senseless, had no need of being held, and was to all appear- 
ance dead, exhibiting no motion whatever. In less than three 
minutes the child was playing with a watch. Not twenty 
drops of blood was lost in the operation ; the child recovered, 
and the wound healed, without any untoward symptoms. 

July 24, 1824. Doctor Woodbury was called to visit Miss 
Edie Mclntire, who had been taking away rye in the sheaf, 
on the beam of a barn. By some misstep, she fell the dis- 
tance of seven or eight feet, and struck directly on the sharp 
point of a stake, erect in a cart below, from which situation 
one man was not able to extricate her. So completely was 
the girl transfixed with the stake, that it was necessary to 
break it off at its insertion in the cart-body, and it was car- 
ried with the girl upon it, some distance from the barn before 
it was taken from her. The stake first struck on the fleshy 
part of the ischium and passed laterally into the lower bow- 
els about two inches, thence through the rectum to the left, 
up the body in an oblique direction, and out at the left breast 
about three inches from the nipple. It fractured three ribs 
in its passage, the stake passing through the body twenty- 
seven inches. It was five inches in circumference at largest 
end. It came out of the breast six or seven inches, so that 
she could take hold of it with both hands while the stake 
was in her. It was made of a young hemlock, and the bark 
with the knots was just stripped off. The stake is now 


deposited in the Medical Institution at Dartmouth College 
Edie was a grown girl, large size, aged fifteen. 

" On my arrival," says Dr. Woodbury, " I found her on a 
bed with her common clothes on, — her friends thought her 
dying ; I was requested not to do much for her for fear she 
would die with more pain ; her pulse was scarcely percepti- 
ble. Her breathing short and hurried, with a cold sweat on 
her skin ; she had an extremely ghastly countenance ; did 
not incline to say much ; submitted to what was done for her 
without any apparent concern or sensation. She said she had 
no pain — made no complaint — but was very faint. There 
was but a trifling hemorrhage from the wounds. After the 
application of simple dressings to the wounds, I endeavored 
to excite the system. She soon began to breathe better — her 
pulse began to be more perceptible, and her skin grew more 
moist and warm ; I now left her for the night. Without 
more particulars, suffice it to say, she recovered. In her first 
attempts to walk, her body inclined a little to the left, but 
she soon became erect. Six weeks from the time of the 
accident, she was able to attend school sixty rods from home. 
During confinement I bled her five times. She subsisted 
seventeen days wholly on water, in which Indian meal had 
been boiled. The next year I saw the girl robust and hearty, 
living at the house of Mr. Thomas Shepard, where she was 
when the accident happened." 

A man by the name of Trull was drowned in the Merri- 
mac, what year is not known ; also, a son of Dea. Jonathan 

April, 1826. Mr. John W. Moore, fell from a building on 
which he was at work, at his brother's, Capt. Robert Moore, 
and died in a few hours. This Providence was the more 
remarkable, as it was just one month from the death of his 

In the winter of 1829, Jonathan Campbell was found frozen 
to death, in a pasture not far from the Chubbuck place. 

1830. Alexander McCoy was killed at the village by a 
boy in a passion. 

June 15, 1S37. A great hail storm, about 3 o'clock, P. 
M., passed over the place, doing great damage to window- 
glass, crops, &c. The funeral procession of Gen. Riddle's 
wife was passing from the village to the centre burying 
ground, and the horses were almost unmanageable. The 
hail-stones were very large. Some of them were seen on the 
ground next day. 


Sept. 1839. Two sons of Dwelly Mitchell, aged fourteen 
and sixteen years, with another boy, went out in a skiff one 
Sabbath morning on the Merrimac, the boat was upset, and 
the two brothers were drowned, the bodies were found a few 
days after, near the place. 

In March, 1845, a dreadful murder was committed a* Man- 
chester, in the evening, on the body of Jonas Parker, which 
awakened the deepest interest in this town, because Parker 
had lived here some years, and was well known among us. 

Oct. 1849. A young man by the name of Jewett was 
killed by falling from a chestnut tree. The tree was in Am- 
herst, the funeral was attended at his father's in this town. 

Nov. 5, 1849. David Houston went to Manchester one 
Monday morning, — was seen during the day — started, as 
was supposed, to come home towards evening, and it was 
presumed he had fallen into the Merrimac or Piscataquog 
river. His body was found near Hudson, June 22, 1850. 

April, 1850. Otis Hardy, of the village, in a fit of delirium 
tremens, committed suicide by cutting his throat. He left a 
wife and children. 

July, 1850. Bradford Leach, aged twenty-five, was 
drowned in the Piscataquog river, near the village. 


" March 29, 1755. Was chosen town-clerk. Voted to 
give me six pounds, old tenor, for what I should record for 
the town this year, and they were to find me paper to write 
the minutes of the town on." 

" October 17, 1755. About 4 o'clock in the morning, there 
was an exceeding great earthquake, reported by those that 
observed, to be seven different shocks. They were all in 
about an hour, or less. The first was exceeding hard, and of 
some minutes continuance ; the others not much more than 
a second or two, except the last, which was a hard shock, but 
short, but not so hard as the first. On the 19th, there was 
another shock of an earthquake, a little before sunset. On 
the 22d, about 9 o'clock in the evening, there was a smart 
shock of an earthquake, about as hard as the shock on the 
19th, but not so long continuance." 

" October 29. 1755. Snow fell, ankle-deep." 


" July 18, 1756. John Smith of New Boston, informed 
me that a bear had bit my heifer, (that he had in keeping,) 
so she could not live. I got Mr. McNeil, of New Boston, to 
butcher her for me." 

" September 13 & 14, 1756. A great frost, so as to kill all 
the corn-leaves." 

" November 27, 1756. Went to Londonderry, to know 
when the Gen. Court set ; found it to be next Tuesday. On 
the 30th set out for Portsmouth ; went as far as Mr. Murphy's, 
in Londonderry, and received an account that the Gen. Court 
had adjourned till Tuesday, 14th December, next." 

" September 4, 1757. Mr. Houston lectured in the forenoon 
on the 1st chapter of John, and preached in the afternoon, it 
being the first sermon ever, preached in our meeting-house. 
11th, Mr. Houston lectured in the forenoon on the 12th, 13th, 
and 14th v. of the first chapter of John, and preached in the 
afternoon, from Amos, fourth chapter and 12th verse." 

" January 22, 1758. Mr. Houston lectured on part of the 
3d chapter of John's gospel. There were but 15 persons at 
meeting, by reason of the snow, which was deep, and poor 

" June 8 & 9, 1759. Fished at Namaskeag Falls and got 
120 shad, and I gave Robert McMurphy 10 of them ; and I 
got 4 shad and a small salmon, for my part, from the setting- 
place. Wm. Peters fished for me by the halves." 

"July 15, 1760. I joined with Sam'l Patterson, to fish for 
salmon, and catched 2 ; one weighed 12£ lbs., and the other 
18 lbs. The small one I had, and the large one he had. 
16th, We raised the bridge over Piscataquog river, and set our 
net that night, and by morning we had a 9 and a 6 pound 
salmon ; the large one I had, and the small one Patterson 

" March 12, 1761. This morning about 2 o'clock, a con- 
siderable smart shock of an earthquake, which wakened me 
out of sleep." 

" March 4, 1762. I attended a meeting of the towns of 
Amherst and Bedford, at Bedford meeting-house, to choose a 
representative ; I was chosen moderator by a unanimous 
choice, and Col. Goffe was chosen representative by 46 votes, 
and Capt. Barron had 13." 

" April 1, 1764. Snow fell near 3 inches deep." 

"June!, 1771. Attended the funeral of Capt. Barron, 
and was one of the under bearers." 


" July 3, 1771. I went to Derryfield meeting-house, and 
heard Mr. Ward of Plymouth preach." 

" November 27, 1779. I have 2 bushels of corn a day for 

"May 19, 1780. Was a thunder-shower in the morning, 
and was followed by an uncommon darkness; such as is not 
remembered. It was so dark that one could not know a man 
but at a small distance, and were obliged to keep a light in 
the chimney to see to go about, and the night was so extra- 
ordinary dark until 1 o'clock, that a person could not see his 
hand when held up, nor even a white sheet of paper. Day 
and night cloudy. Cause unknown. The works of the Lord 
are great and marvellous, and past finding out until he gra- 
ciously pleases to reveal them." 

Matthew Patten was occasionally called, at that early day, 
to go great distances, to survey land and lay out towns. At 
one time he went for that purpose to Piermont. Although 
our extracts from his journal are already somewhat copious, 
yet his entries on that journey, will be read with interest as 
presenting a curious contrast, with the facilities and appliances 
of travel at this day. and also fixing the date of some transac- 
tions connected with the early history of that township. 

" September 25, 1765. I set out for Goos, to help to lay 
out the town of Piermont, and arrived at Pennykook, and 
lodged at Mrs. Osgood's. 26th, — I bo't some pork and other 
things I wanted, to carry me through the woods, and I arrived 
at Baker town, and lodged at Call's. 27th, — I arrived at 
Lieut. Brown's, in Plymouth, and lodged there. 28th, — It 
rained all the forepart of the day ; in the afternoon, I arrived 
at Jotham Cummings' the uppermost house in Plymouth, and 
lodged there. 29th, — Was Sabbath-day, and I had a sore 
on the sole of my right foot, that I was lame with, and lay 
by. 30th, — I set out, and got a little more than 3 miles 
beyond Baker River Falls in the new road, and camped ; and 
Col. Greely, Esqrs. Webster and Bartlett, and one Page, came 
to me and camped with me." 

" October 1. I arrived at Coos, about 1 or 2 o'cl'k, P. M. ; 
lodged at Mr. Atkinson's, in Haverhill. 2d, — I went to 
surveying in Piermont. 21st, — I finished laying out what 
was proposed to be laid out. 22d, — We got our things, and 
some provision to last us home ; got to Mr. Ladd's the last 


house on our way, in Coos. 23d, — Set off early in the 
morning, and arrived at Captain Brainerd's camp, in Rumney. 
24th, — We came a mile on this side Smith's River. 25th, — 
We arrived at Pennykook, and lodged at Mrs. Osgood's; 
Lieut. Martin's expenses, and mine, there, were £5. 26th, — 
I came home in the evening." 

Mr. Patten's daughter, lately deceased, stated that while he 
was camped out, one night, in or near Piermont, there came 
along a poor family, going from Massachusetts to settle in 
Piermont. They staid the night in the camp, and during the 
night, the woman, who had been exhausted and well-nigh 
famished, with the tedious journey, seemed to be near dying. 
The husband waked up Mr. Patten, and begged he would let 
them have something to sustain her. They arose, got some 
nourishing food prepared, and she revived. Some years after, 
Mr. Patten was passing that way, and as he came opposite a 
comfortable dwelling and good farm, a lady at the door called 
to him by name. Surprised, he stopped, and it proved to be 
the family he had assisted in distress. Providence had 
smiled upon them, and they wished to express their gratitude. 

The writer was at Piermont a short time since, and saw an 
old inhabitant of the town, who told him, that a good plan 
of the township, drafted by Mr. Patten, was still preserved 
with the town records. There was no settlement in the 
town till 1768, as appears by " Historical Sketches of the 
Coos County," by Rev. Grant Powers. 


William Holmes lived on the Reed place, north of Stephen 
French, Jr. James Linn lived where Stephen French, Jr., 
now lives. Dea. James Wallace married Linn's daughter, 
and Linn afterwards lived and died at James Wallace's. 
Dea. James Wallace first lived in a log-house, at the foot of 
the meeting-house hill, near where Chandler Spofford now 
lives; he afterwards built, lived and died in a house that 
was destroyed by fire on the spot where Phineas French's 
brick house now stands. 

Rev. John Houston, when first married, lived with John 
McLaughlin, about seventy rods south-east of Calvin Snow's, 



on the south side of the McLaughlin farm, now owned by 
Rodney McLaughlin, a grandson. In a few months, Mr. 
Houston built and moved into a part of the house Mr. 
Spofford now inhabits ; he afterwards built, lived and died 
in a house in which his grandson, John Houston, now lives. 

Rufus Merrill lived where Daniel Barnard now lives. 
Widow Alfred Foster lived where Joseph Marshall now 

Oliver L. Kendall, Thomas Kendall, and Nathan Kendall, 
built the houses they now occupy. 

Isaac Riddle, Esq., built and lived on the place now owned 
by his son, Isaac, of Manchester, and at present occupied by 
Joseph Flint. David Gillis, blacksmith, lived where John 
Conner now lives. Widow Wm. Barnes lived where Orin 
Mudge now lives. John Houston (son of the first minister) 
lived where Dr. P. P. Woodbury now lives. Simeon Chub- 
buck, grandfather of Fanny Forrester, now Mrs. Judson, lived 
on what is known as the Chubbuck place, south of the Bancroft 
pasture, so called. Ensign Chubbuck lived on the " Globe," 
about sixty rods north of Dr. Woodbury's ; he kept a public 
house for entertainment, called " The Globe Tavern." 

Robert Lincoln lived where Leonard and Riddle French 
now live ; John Lincoln lived on the same farm. The house 
stood about fifty rods south-east of the present building ; it 
was burnt down. Phares Shirley lived where Wm. Bursiel 
now lives. It was taken off the Gordon farm. John 
McLaughlin settled on the Gordon farm. Samuel Gordon 
bought of McLaughlin, and sold to his brother, John Gordon, 
at an early period of the settlement. John lived and died 
on said farm ; it is now owned by Adam Gordon and P. 
P* Woodbury, son and son-in-law of Josiah Gordon, Esq. 
William Barnett lived on the south side of the Gordon farm, 
on the hill. Francis Barnett, brother of the above, lived on 
the Beard farm, now owned by Gen. Wm. P. Riddle. 
Samuel Terrill lived on the hill where Moses Marshall now 
lives. Samuel Bowman lived where Henry McGrath now 
lives. Amos Gardner lived near, the house now down. 
John Wallace lived where Thomas Bursiel now lives ; the 
old house was moved to Piscataquog village by a grandson, 
Frederick Wallace. Dr. Paul Tenney lived where Bradbury 
Rowe now lives, recently occupied by Dr. P. P. Woodbury. 
Elisha Lincoln built and lived where John Parker lived, the 
place more particularly known as the Gen. Montgomery 


place ; this house is not standing. Christopher Rice lived 
where David Atwood and David G. Atwood now live. 

John Wilson lived where widow Samuel Moor now lives. 
Dea. Wm. Boies lived where Ebenezer Holbrook lives. 

One Monday morning, it is said, Boies saw one of his 
neighbors, by the side of the road, sitting on a log. Says 
Boies, " What are you doing here, man, so early ? " He 
replied, " I was thinking what Mr. Houston was preaching 
about yesterday, and I could na make the preaching come 
together." Boies replied, " Trouble yoursel na about that, 
man, — a' ye have to do, man, is to fear God and keep his 
commandments." And his neighbor used to say, " This 
was the best preaching for me I ever heard ; always, when 
perplexed about texts of Scripture and preaching, this advice 
of Boies put the matter at rest." 

Lieut. Samuel Vose and brother James, grandsons of 
Proprietor, lived where Brooks Wortley, Mr. Adams, and Mr. 
Plummer, now live. 

John Moor lived where Robert Moor, a grandson, now 
lives. Wm. Kennedy lived on the south part of said farm ; 
houses not now standing. Andrew Walker lived where 
Joseph H. Stevens now lives. Joseph Cochran lived where 
Joseph and Calvin Butterfield now live. Cochran was killed 
by the fall of a tree, directly opposite John Mullet's house. 
Cochran had two daughters ; Samuel Moor married one, and 
Mr. Dunlap, of Goffstown, married the other. John Mullet, 
blacksmith, has lived where he now lives. John and Hugh 
Riddle, with Robert Adams, lived where Capt. McAllister 
now lives. Riddle's house was about seventy rods west of 
the present building. John Riddle had one daughter, Mary, 
who lived on the Isaac Atwood place, in a house by herself; 
she was never married, and died about 1813. Patrick Larkin 
lived where Wm. McDole Pherson now lives ; Larkin married 
Robert Adam's daughter, Elizabeth. When Larkin asked 
Adams for his daughter, Adams said he did not know as he 
had any particular objection against him, but he did not like 
the Roman Catholic religion. Larkin's parents were Catho- 
lics, and Adams was a Scotch Presbyterian. Larkin obviated 
the objection by the shrewd remark, " If a man happened to 
be born in a stable, would that make him a horse ? " 

Thomas Boies lived where John and Thomas Barr now 
live. Fergus Kennedy lived on the same place, about eight 
rods directly east of Wm. McDole Pherson 's. Boies married 


Kennedy's daughter ; and Samuel Barr, father of Thomas 
and John, married Boies's daughter. 

Jesse Richardson built and lives where he now does. 
James McPherson built and lives where he now does. John 
Mc Kenny lived where Joshua Yose, father and son, now 
live. Maj. John Dunlap lived where Robert Dunlap, a son, 
now lives. John McPherson lived where Michael Boynton 
now lives. Whitefleld Gilmore lived where Silvanus John- 
son now lives. 

Until after the Revolutionary war, there was but one 
settlement between Whitefleld Gilmore's and the New Boston 
line. John Barnes, a brother of Asa, lived on land now 
owned by Leonard C. French, north-east of the Dea. Craig 
farm. Samuel Eaton lived where Timothy Townsend now 
lives. Nathaniel Baldwin lived -where Phineas C. French 
now lives. Elijah Buxton lived where David Witherspoon 
now lives, known as the " Tinker farm." 

Robert Patten lived where Wm. Tolford, a son-in-law, 
now lives. Patten's settlement was the first in that part of 
the town after the Revolution. David and William McClary 
lived where James McDole now lives. Samuel Morrison, 
and then Robert Gilchrist, lived where Moses Gage now 
lives. John Armstrong, where George Webber now lives. 
Dea. John Craig, where Joseph Tinker now lives. Samuel 
Gilchrist, where Ralph, Thomas and Abiel Holbrook, now 
live. Alexander Patten, where Benj. Stevens now lives. 
Alexander Caldwell, where David White now lives. John 
Pratt, where David Stevens now lives ; known as the "Bryant 
farm."' Ezra Baldwin, where Sewell Stratton now lives. 

Jesse Worcester,* (father of J. E. Worcester, the philologist 
and geographer,) lived where Benj. Nichols now lives. David 
French, where David Wright now lives, place of the late 

* "There Worcester, (that noble name,) 
From whom a bright descendant came, 
He lived just over " Joppa hill," 
And, as you cross a rippling rill, 
You rise a summit ; there's the spot, 
(Where Nichols now has cast his lot,) 
Where Joseph E., in boyhood's days, 
Indulged in many prattling plays ; 
Not dreaming, ere his locks were gray, — 
Our Anglo-Saxon he should sway." 

[Extract from JUSS. poem already alluded to. 


Ebenezer French. Coburn French built and lived where he 
now does. John Craig lived where Franklin Wright now 

John Bell lived near Bedford Centre, about sixty rods 
south-west of the Rev. Thomas Savage, (at his first settle- 
ment,) afterwards, he built, lived and died on the brow of 
the west end of the " Bell hill," so called. George Whitford 
now lives on the Bell place. Samuel and Jonathan Currier, 
brothers, lived where Frederick Hodgman now lives ; 
Samuel on the south, and Jonathan on the north side of 
the farm. At an early period, Alexander Orr lived on the 
same farm ; Orr married Jane McConihe, of Merrimac, and 
John Gault, a Revolutionary soldier, married Orr's daughter 
Molly, and Daniel McLaughlin married Fanny, a daughter 
of Gault, and Mr. Chase, of Hillsborough, married another 
daughter. On the same farm, at the north side, lived James 
Underwood, first on the list of lawyers, a connection of the 
Litchfield family of that name. 

James Houston, brother of Rev. John Houston, and Sam- 
uel, blacksmith, son of James, lived where Benj. Dowse now 
lives. Samuel was totally blind the latter part of his life, 
rather fond of conversation, loved to tell of a quaint reply 
that he once heard given to the enquiry, " What is the 
difference between the Presbyterian and Congregationalist ? " 
" O, the difference is this. ' The Congregationalist goes 
home and eats a regular dinner between services, but the 
Presbyterian postpones his till after meeting.' ' This Dowse 
place was where Mr. McGregor, when a youth, passing 
through town from Londonderry to Chestnut hills, took refuge 
from the pursuit of a tremendous black snake that chased 
him, with head erect, something like a mile. It is said that 
a snake of immense proportions used to be seen in these 

Matthew Patten, one of the first settlers, lived on the 
plains, on the second piece of land that was cleared in town ; 
he afterwards built and lived where Samuel Gardner now 
lives. On the same farm, the late David Patten, Esq., a son 
of Matthew, lived and died. Adam Patten built and lived 
where he now does. Rev. Thomas Savage resides in the 
brick cottage, built for him by Capt. William Patten. 

Fergus Kennedy lived where Nathan Cutler now lives. 
At an early period, Hugh Campbell lived on this farm. Old 
and young Drs. Cutler, lived on this place. John Smith, 


name of celebrity, Englishman, deerskin breeches-maker, 
lived here for many years. Hugh Campbell soon after built 
and lived in the field between the old school-house and James 
McQ.uaid's. The school-house stood at the foot of the hill, 
by the large stone, as you go from the farm of the late John 
Orr, to the centre of the town. Campbell married Molly 
Smith, daughter of Dea. Benjamin Smith. 

Robert Walker, one of the first settlers of the town, lived 
on the Jesse Walker place. At an early period of the settle- 
ment, Robert Walker and Samuel Patten exchanged places ; 
the descendants of Walker still live on the same farm, and 
the descendents of Patten also live on the same farm. 
Joseph Houston lived where John O. Houston recently lived. 
Daniel Vose, where Adam Campbell now lives. Daniel 
Campbell, where he now lives, with Thomas Campbell, father 
and son. 

Gawn Riddle lived where John Goffe, son-in-law of the 
late William Riddle, Esq., now lives. The old house stood 
at the foot of the hill opposite the saw-mill. John Riddle, a 
son of Gawn, lived where Isaac Cutler now lives. David 
Riddle, another son of Gawn, lived on the " White place," 
where John D. Riddle, a son of David, now lives ; the origi- 
nal house was a few rods west of the present dwelling. Isaac, 
another son of Gawn, lived east, at the centre of the town, on 
the place now owned by Isaac Riddle, a son. Richard Mc- 
Allister, where the late William Riddle lived, now owned by 
his daughter, Laura; the old house stood a few rods west. 

James Gardner built and lived where he now does. 
Ezekiel Gardner lived where Senter Farley now lives, for- 
merly occupied by Gregg Campbell. Robert Morrill lived 
about seventy-five rods south of Tenny Campbell's. Garnet 
Rowel lived where Solomon Manning now lives. William 
Campbell, who first introduced the hop-plant into town at an 
early period, lived on the same farm. Seth Page lived where 
John Seavy now lives. Joshua Bailey, where Samuel Need- 
ham now lives. Dea. John Aiken, where the late Dea. 
Phineas Aiken lived and died. Individuals now living, 
remember, when working at Dea. Phineas Aiken's, while his 
mother was living, that in the absence of the person who 
took the head, she would ask a blessing at table. 

Dea. Matthew Miller, and afterwards, Silas Shepard, lived 
where Ephraim Hardy now lives. John Morrison, where 
Barney Cain formerly lived ; house now unoccupied. Tho's 



Shepard, where he now lives. William Flint, where he now 
lives. James Campbell, where Nathaniel Flint now lives. 
Edward Lyon, where Eber Pike now lives. Henry Park- 
hurst, where Simon Jenness now lives. James Mann, father 
of Eleanor, where Rufus Parkhurst now lives. Asa Barnes, 
one of the original proprietors, where the late Nathan Barnes 
lived, and where Gardner Nevens, a son-in-law of Nathan, 
now lives. Capt. Nathan Barnes built and lived where Dea. 
John French now lives ; the place once owned by Capt. 
Perry. Nathan Barnes, Nehemiah Kittredge, Ned Lyon, 
James Campbell, and others, hauled clay from the south part 
of the town, and burned brick on the farm of Dea. John 
French. Kittredge said they went over stones in the road, 
as high as the hub of the wheel. 

John Rand, Esq., lived where Seth Campbell now lives, 
and where John O. Houston once lived. Ezekiel Gardner 
lived where James Campbell now lives. Mrs McQ,uaid lived 
at the foot of the Joppa hill. Adam Butterfield, Widow 
Robert Adams, Page Campbell, Isaac Campbell, and Robert 
Campbell, where they now do. The progenitors of the 
Campbell family came to this town from New Salem, or that 
vicinity. John Richardson lived where the late David Ste- 
vens lived and died. Stephen Nichols, where John Shepard 
now lives. Cornelius Barnes, between the grave yard, at the 
west part of the town, and Nehemiah Kittredge's ; house now 
torn down ; he was a brother to Asa. Nehemiah Kittredge 
lived where his son Nehemiah, and Mr. Gage, now live. 
Nehemiah, jr., built and removed to the new house. Benja- 
min Sprague, where Leonard C. French, 2d, now lives. 
Moses Dennis where Parker Butterfield lives. David Sprague 
where David, a son, and William Hobart, blacksmith, now 
live. The Sprague family came from Billerica. 

Matthew Patterson lived where Moses Swett, first, second, 
and third, lived. Ebenezer Swett, where Frederic, his son, 
now lives. Daniel Robbins built and lived where he now 
does. Nathan Butler, where he now lives. Sanford and 
Alfred Roby where they now live. Benjamin Barron, where 
Daniel Swett now lives. John Gardner where David Cady 
now lives. Robert Giffln and Charles Black, with one other, 
lived on or near the farm now owned by Shearburn Dearborn. 
Black was drowned on his way from Amherst, in Baboosack 

John Mcintosh lived where Isaac Gage, jr., now lives. 


David and William McClary lived where M. M. Stevens now 
lives. Thomas Bennett, and afterwards Hugh McConike, 
where Thomas Gage lives. 

To the east, Solomon Gage lived where Amos Harris now 
lives. Daniel Muzzey where Solomon Gage now lives. 
Barney Cain, or McCain, where Dwelly Mitchell lives. 
Adam Dickey, where Isaac Gage lives. Robert Matthews, 
where George Hodgman lives, and Willard Parker lived 
before him. Thomas Wallace, where the late George O. 
Wallace lived. Joseph Wallace where Thomas Moore now 
lives. John Parker, where John Kinson lives. Wm. Cald- 
well, where George W. Gage now lives. John Parker where 
Parker Hodgman lives. Archibald Lawson, about sixty rods 
south-east of Parker Hodgman's. He was from Braintree, 
Massachusetts, and kept Bachelor's Hall many years. Mr. 
Amos Harris ploughed up here, a sickle of very old construc- 
tion. Jonathan Dowse built and lived where Mr. Thompson 
now lives. John McAffee lived where James Morrison now 

The late Samuel Morrison lived and died in the house 
which he built a few rods north of his brother James. Hugh 
Orr, brother of the late John Orr, lived where Brooks Shat- 
tuck now lives, formerly the place of Capt. William Chandler, 
now of Nashua. Samuel Patterson, where Widow Stephen 
Goffe now lives. Nathaniel Patterson, on the same farm, a 
few rods south of the Isaac Atwood place, where Benjamin 
Hall lives. The house, when occupied by Peggy Patterson 
and her brother, was burnt down. The inmates, it is said, 
were far from living harmoniously. Dea. John Houston, a 
neighbor, and most pacific man, as the flames were doing 
their work, remarked, " we see, a house divided against itself 
cannot stand." James Patterson lived where Robert Houston 
now lives. Thomas Townsend, where Isaac Dow now lives, 
on the west side of the road. Thomas Matthews, where the 
late Dea. William Moor lived, at present occupied by Joseph 
C. Moor. Col Daniel Moor, where Stephen Dole Esq., and 
afterwards Joseph Colby, Esq., lived ; at present occupied by 
Daniel Jacquith. Samuel Gerrish, where Robert Moor now 
lives. Robert Wallace, where Lemuel N. Wright now lives. 
Thomas Atwood where Henry Hale now lives. Joseph 
Scobey, where the late Col. William Moor lived, and at 
present, Mr. Jones. The name of Scobey, though long extinct 
in town, is still found among the inscriptions in the old 


The late Daniel Moor, son of Col. William Moor, where 
Daniel Parker now lives. William Burns lived where 
William Moor now does, on the Richard Gregg place. John 
Burns, where George M. Way now lives. Eleazer Dole, 
where Thomas Hackett now lives. Thomas Wells, on the 
brick-yard ; the house occupied only while making brick. 
James Smith, brother of Adam Smith, where the late Hugh 
Riddle lived, and at present, his son-in-law, Willard Parker. 
Waldron, tanner, lived where Phineas C. French now lives. 
Dea. Benjamin Smith, where John D. Armstrong lives. 
James McQ,uigg, where the late Matthew McAfTee lived, and 
where his son Samuel now lives. Hon. John Orr, where 
Samuel Pattten now lives. James McQ,uaid, where Gawn 
Riddle now lives. The house was on the east side of the 
brook, on a knoll. George Orr, where the late Ann Orr, his 
daughter, lived and died. 

At the Village Piscataquog, William Parker first built and 
lived near where the tavern house now stands. He after- 
wards built, lived, and died on the west side of the road, on 
the hill, where Lewis F. Harris, a son-in-law, now lives. 
The corner-store is the second one on the same place. 
Samuel Abbot, a celebrated scythe-maker, lived on the rise 
of ground, where the widow of the late Robert Parker, now 
lives. Abbot afterwards lived in Antrim and Frances- 
town, where he manufactured scythes for Peter and Mark 

Samuel Moor lived in the mill-yard, a few rods west of the 
present mills, now owned by Widow David Hamlet. Thomas 
Parker built and lived where Gen. William P. Riddle now 
lives. Jonathan Palmer, son-in-law of Mr. Parker, a mer- 
chant, built, lived, and died, where Israel Fuller now lives. 
His funeral, July, 1825, was the second attended in this 
town by the present pastor ; Capt. Nathan Barnes, being 
the first. 

James Parker, Esq., built, lived, and died, where James 
Walker now lives. Jotham Gillis lived a few rods south of 
Dr. H. C. Parker's ; he kept a house of entertainment. 
Daniel Mack, Daniel Parker, Frederick G. Stark, Widow 
David Hamlet, Jonas B. Bowman, Benjamin F. Wallace, and 
Noyes Poor, built the houses they still occupy. Mace Moul- 
ton built and lived where Samuel Brown now lives. Doct 
William Wallace lived in the house opposite Daniel Mack, 
now occupied by Mr. Barnes. David Riddle built and lived* 


where Widow Lund now lives. John Moor lived where 
Ephraim and James Harvill now live. Robert Gilmoor, 
where Dea. Samuel Mc&uesten lives. Matthew Little, 
where Adam Gilmoor lives. Capt. Thomas McLaughlin, 
where Dea. Richard Dole lived, and at present Mr. Noyes. 
Col. John Goffe, on the GofTe farm, now owned by Jonas and 
Byron Bowman. Thomas Newman, where William Rundlet 
lives. Samuel Patterson, father of Samuel, who lived and 
died at the Stephen Goffe place, lived where Capt. Thomas 
Chandler now lives. He first built on the north line, a few 
rods south of Dea. Richard Dole's clothing-mill, He after- 
wards built on the east side of the road from Chandler's, 
where James Martin, the first deputy from Bedford, in the 
Revolutionary war, lived. Col. White, of Massachusetts, 
owned the land ; he met Patterson in Boston, directly after 
he landed, from Ireland, and agreed with him to settle his 
land. Patterson had a number of sons. Zechariah Chandler 
descended from one of the original proprietors, lived where 
Sarah Chandler, a daughter, now lives. William McDougal 
lived where Samuel Chandler now lives ; his house stood 
where Samuel Chandler's garden is now ; his barn stood on 
the opposite side of the brook, where William Patten now 
lives. McDougal kept Bachelor's Hall, did his own cooking, 
for two persons beside himself, and on the day of his death, 
he had bread enough baked to last the family till after his 
funeral ; he dropped dead, from his chair. A. Kidder lived a 
little east of the School house 

Primas Chandler built the house he still occupies. Robert 
and James Walker, brothers, built, cleared, and lived, on the 
land where Josiah Walker, grandson of James, still lives. 
These two were the first settlers of Bedford. James Walker 
lived where William Walker now lives, and where Dea. 
Stephen Thurston once lived. Dea. Thurston's first wife 
was a sister of Rev. Dr. Parish, of Byfield, Massachusetts, 
and mother of Philomela, second wife of the missionary 
Newell, in India. Samuel Fugard lived where John G. Moor 
now does. Ephraim Bushnell, where Russell Moor lives. 
James Thompson on the knoll, a few rods north of John 
Patten. Moses Barron, where John Patten lives ; and here 
was born the first white, male child in town. Thomas 
Harris, where Orvil Giles lives. William Moor, where 
Thomas Wortley, a son-in-law, lives. John Vickery, where 
Daniel Ferguson lives ; known as the Samuel Smith place. 
Amos Martin, where Isaac McAllister lives. Hugh and 


Joseph Moor, where Joseph Moor lives. Bernice Pritchard 
built where he now lives. James Darrah, where Isaac, his 
son, now lives. James Darrah, jr., lately deceased, where 
his son, James, now lives. 

Most towns in this State were more or less settled from 
Massachusetts and Connecticut. For instance, Francestown 
was settled prrincipally from Dedham, Wilton from Andover, 
Lyndeborough from Danvers. Of this town, the English 
population originated in different sections of Massachusetts. 
Some came from Billerica, as the Kittredge, Sprague, and 
Dowse families ; some from towns south of Boston, Plymouth, 
Abington, and Norton, as the Lincoln, Gardner, Chubbuck, 
Atwood, and Shepard families, and some from Roxbury, 
Brighton, and neighborhood, as the Chandler and Holbrook 
families. Some names once known in this town, have now 
become extinct, as any one may see, by visiting the old 
graveyard, where he will find such names as McDuffee, 
Scobey, Peebles, Caldwell, and others. 





Dr. Nathan Cutler came to Bedford from Dunstable, Mass., 
in 1777, and moved back to the same place in 1782. 

Dr. John Quin came to Bedford in 1782, from Halifax, Vt. 
He was a relation of Dr. Cutler and had a family. After 
staying a year or two he removed to Massachusetts. 

Dr. Nathan Cutler, son of the former, came to Bedford in 
1789 ; he married Elizabeth Swett, and died May, 1809. 

Dr. Wm. Wallace came to Bedford in 1805 ; his native 
place was Milford, N. H. He died 1821. His widow, sis- 
ter of Rev. E. L. Parker, of Londonderry, survived him 
many years. 

Dr. Baird came to Bedford in 1811 ; left in 1813, and went 
to Nelson ; he resided, while in town, with Thomas Wallace. 

Dr. Page came in 1810, and resided in Bedford but a few 

Dr. Fred. A. Mitchell came in 1813; he was born in Peter- 
borough. He married Lucy, daughter of Dea. Phineas 
Aiken, and now resides in Bennington, N. H. He left the 
practice in 1815, but lived in town till 1835. 

Dr. P. P. Woodbury came to Bedford in 1815 ; he was 
born in Francestown, N. H.; still resides in town, and is in 
successful practice. [See Genealogy.] 

Dr. Silas Walker came to Bedford in 1827 ; born in Goffs- 
town ; died in 1843. 

Dr. Houston came to Bedford in 1824 ; resided at Piscata- 
quog ; stayed one year, and then went to Western New 

Dr. Levi B. Johnson came to Bedford in 1825 ; stayed two 
years ; he boarded at the village. 

Dr. Robert Riddle, son of Hugh Riddle, began to practice 
at Hooksett ; came back to his father's in 1825; practiced 
medicine till his death, which occurred in 1828. [See Gen- 


Dr. Henry Clinton Parker, son of James Parker, Esq., stud- 
ied medicine in Philadelphia ; began to practice at the village 
in 1838 ; still continues in the profession. [See Geneal- 
ogy- J 

Dr. Leonard French, son of Leonard C. French, studied 

medicine with Dr. Crosby ; began to practice in 1845 ; stayed 
one year in town, and removed to Ashby, where he now 
resides. [See Genealogy.] 

Dr. John D. Walker, son of Dr. Silas Walker, studied 
medicine with his father, and began to practice in 1840 or 
41, and still continues in town. 

Dr. John Harvill came to Bedford in 1849 ; began to prac- 
tice at the village, and after one year went to California. 


The first lawyer that settled in Bedford was James Under- 
wood, son of Judge Underwood, of Litchfield. He had a 
house a little north of Frederic Hodgman's. It is said he 
became deranged. 

James Parker, Esq. came from Litchfield to Bedford, and 
opened an office in Piscataquog village in the Spring of 
1805, and continued in the practice of law till his death, 
which occurred March 26, 1822. 

Isaac McGaw, Esq., son of Jacob McGaw, Esq., of Merri- 
mac, came to Bedford, opened an office in Piscataquog vil- 
lage, April, 1810, and continued the practice of law till June 
1st, 1819. He then left Bedford, married, and settled in 
Windham, N. H. He now resides with a married daughter 
in Merrimac. 

Jonas B. Bowman, Esq., came to Bedford, March 26, 1818 ; 
went into partnership with James Parker, Esq., and continued 
with him in the practice of law till the death of his partner, 
when he took the office, and has been in the practice of law 
to the present time, having had the last few years an office in 

James McWilkins, Esq., came to Bedford, Oct. 20, 1819, 
opened an office in Wm. P. Riddle's store, and continued here 
in the practice of law till June 3, 1S40, when he moved to 


John Porter, Jr. came to Bedford from Londonderry, and 
went into J. B. Bowman's office in company, Oct. 5, 1835 ; 
went to Manchester in 1839. 


Some account of the commencement and progress of the 
science of Music in town. 

The first instruction in music was by John Orr, Esq., about 
the year 1780. There were no books at that time, and the 
instruction was altogether by rote. 

The next teacher was Ezekiel Gardner. He undertook to 
give his scholars some idea of time, though no book was then 
used, except a few tunes pricked off by himself, with the 
Bass and Air only, to aid him somewhat in his labor. One 
of these books is now in the possession of Thomas Chand- 
ler, bearing date 1782. 

Mr. Josiah Chandler, from Andover, Mass., came to town, 
who had some knowledge of Music, and first taught Thomas 
and Samuel Chandler at the age of some ten or twelve years ; 
their father bought them one of the old Billing's Collection, 
which is supposed to have been the first singing book in 

A Mr. Sherwin, from Tyngsborough, next taught. He 
introduced the Worcester Collection, and taught by rule. It 
is believed these were the first books to any extent in town. 
John Orr, Ezekiel Gardner, John Pratt, and many others 
attended his school, in the year about 1786. 

Mr. Goss, from Billerica, was in town about 1790, and 
taught one winter. John Pratt occasionally instructed. 

Dea. James Wallace, up to about 1790, Deaconed or lined 
the Psalm and set the tune, the congregation joining in the 
exercise. About 1790, the singers took their station in the 
gallery, and the Deacon's services were dispensed with in 
that part of the exercise. At the time above alluded to, 
Ezekiel Gardner was chosen leader of the singers by the town, 
joined by Phineas Aiken, John Pratt, Thomas and Samuel 
Chandler, Hugh Moor, David McAffee, Margaret Orr, Susan- 
nah, Annis, and Jane Aiken. About the same time a Bass 
Viol was introduced into the Meeting-house, which caused 
much dissatisfaction to many of the congregation. Some 


were so much disaffected in consequence of such proceedings 
as to leave the house ; ere long, however, such feelings were 
dispelled, and the innocent Bass Viol remained to cheer and 
assist such as were performing an important part in public 

There was not much done in the way of instruction for 
several years. About the year 1800, John Pratt was chosen 
leader by the town, and some other persons joined the Choir. 
Richard, William, and Jane Dole, Joseph Colby, Daniel, Wil- 
liam, and John Moor. • 

In 1803 or 4, Thomas Chandler began to assist the young 
people in town in obtaining some knowledge of Music. His 
first efforts were in his own neighborhood. He subsequently 
taught at the centre of the town, and in other places. 

About 1808 or 10, Samuel Chandler and Richard Dole 
were chosen leaders by the town. The following persons 
were among the singers of that day, John, Silas, and Nancy 
Aiken, William, Jane and Margaret Patten, Asenath and Sally 
Chandler, Nancy and Jane Moor, William P. Riddle, Daniel 
Gordon, William Chandler, Thomas Shepherd, Alfred Foster 
and James French. 

Soon after this, Capt. William Patten commenced the labor 
of teaching, devoting several Winters to the business in vari- 
ous parts of the town ; thereby keeping alive a spirit of 
social, joyous, and friendly feeling, which should always sub- 
sist (in order to success) among a singing community. 

About 1820, Mr. Richardson, from Lyndeborough, we 
think, taught one Winter at Isaac Riddle's Hall, soon after 
the close of which, Daniel L. French was chosen leader by 
the Choir, and continued as such to 1835 or 6. Many young 
persons came forward after Mr. Richardson's school had 
closed and joined those already in the seats ; among the num- 
ber was Mary J. Chandler, Louisa Dole, Polly, Susannah, and 
Jane Riddle. At a subsequent period others were added, 
viz. : — Sarah A. Aiken, Margaret A. and Nancy French, 
Charles and David Aiken, John and William Craig, Eleazer 
Dole, Blanchard Nichols, and Isaac Darrah ; Alfred Foster 
played the Bass Viol some ten years, or until shortly before 
his decease, which was in 1827, being an efficient member of 
the Choir for many years. 

Mr. French, as leader, saw the necessity of keeping up and 
improving, as far as practicable, the singing in town, conse- 
quently he devoted much time in the Winter to further its 



advancement, the result of which was an increase in num- 
bers, with some distinguished singers. 

Several other persons have taught in town since Mr. French 
left. We will name such as occur to our mind at this mo- 
ment : Rev. Henry Little, Ohio ; Rev. James Aiken, Glou- 
cester ; Mr. Hutchinson, of the far famed " Hutchinson 
family ; " Mr. Heath, David Stevens, James McFerson and 
Robert W. French. 

When Mr. French left town for the purpose of preparing 
himself for the ministry, he was succeeded by David Stevens, 
2d, as leader of the Choir, which place he held till 1848, 
when he too left town. During Mr. Stevens' lead, quite a 
number were added, to wit : — Elijah C, Martha and. Au- 
gusta Stevens ; Harriet N. and Mary Ann French ; William, 
Leonard, Susan J. and Sarah F. French, Sally Riddle, Mary 
J. Fisher, Ann E. Riddle, Julia and Lucretia Savage, Solo- 
mon G., Mary Jane, Harriet and Cordelia Stevens, Elizabeth 
and Louisa Gordon, Maria and Sarah Parker, Hugh R. 
French, John U. French and James F. Moor, Jerusha and 
Susan Spolforcl, Lemuel and John Spofford, Alfred McAtfee, 
Margaret Ann Moor, Sewel Stratton, and Stillman Shepard. 

At a meeting of the singers, in 1849, James McFerson 
was chosen Leader. The Winter following a constitution 
was framed and presented, when most of the Choir become 
members by subscribing thereto. 

The persons bearing the following names belong to the 
Choir, and usually sit in the singer's seats at church : Mrs. 
Jane McFerson, Mrs. Betsy Kendall, Laura A. Riddle, Mar- 
garet A. and Lavinia J. Patten, Mary Ann Shepherd, John 
O. and David B. French, Henry and George B. Chandler, 
James T. Kendall, Calvin R. and Emeline Butterfield, Fred- 
erick F. French, George Shattuck, Dudley H., Solomon and 
Lucy Manning, and Achsah Houston, Mrs. Jane Barr, Lydia 
J. Butterfield, Jane Nichols, Lucy Ann Whitford, Martha 
Goffe, Julia Barr, Greenleaf Walker and Alfred McAffee. 

It is believed that the services of the Choir in this town 
have generally been very acceptable. Neighboring ministers 
when they exchange, often speak of the excellence of the 

In connection with the Vocal department, we will here 
take occasion to remark, that in the year 1828 there was an 
Instrumental Musical Society formed in town, regulated by 
a Constitution, which required the members to meet every 

hops. 203 

month for rehearsal and musical exercises. The following 
names appear upon the record as members thereof, Leonard 
Walker, Daniel L. French, Adam Chandler, Joseph Lombard, 
Chandler Spofford, William G. Campbell, Dioclesian Melvin, 
John Craig, Jr., John Parker, Frederic Wallace, Jesse Walker, 
John D. Walker, John W. Barnes, Joseph Atwood, Greenleaf 
Walker and Andrew Walker. The instruments used were 
Clarionetts, Bugle, French Horn, Octave Flute, Cymballs, 
Bass Horn. Bassoon, Trombone, and Drums ; thus forming 
the best drilled, and most efficient Band to be found in. this 
region. They had many calls upon public occasions to go 
into neighboring towns where such exercises formed an 
important part. 

At the present time (Dec. 1850,) there is a singing school 
taught at the Town-Hall, by Mr. Willard, of Manchester, 
consisting of young scholars, under very encouraging cir- 
cumstances. They are beginners, and their names are as 
follows : — 

Willard C. Parker, Orlando Hall, Sylvester Shephard, Geo. 
Shepard, Hugh Barnard, Henry Barnard, George Woodbury, 
Charles Woodbury, George Whitford, Edwin Whitford, Ellen 
French, Celia French, Martha Woodbury, Mary Ann Man- 
ning, Emily Alexander, Margaret Goffe, Lucy Manning, Sarah 
Manning, Margaret Parker, Mrs. Jane Armstrong. 

S. Greenleaf Stevens has the direction of the school as to 
management and arrangement. 

To the above number fifteen more should be added, mak- 
ing a school, at present, of thirty-five. 


About the year 1800, Mr. Wm. Campbell of Wilmington, 
Mass., emigrated to Bedford, and settled on a farm adjoining 
Dea. Phineas Aiken. The farm is now owned and occu- 
pied by Mr. Solomon Manning. Campbell set out and culti- 
vated the first hop-yard in town, and the first probably in the 
State. He brought the roots from Wilmington. The article 
at that time being high, he realized fifty cents per pound. 
The raising of hops became very profitable, and almost every 
farmer was induced to enter in the growing of this produc- 
tion, until Bedford became the largest hop-growing town in 


New-England, and continued so, until about 1S36, when the 
plant was so extensively cultivated throughout the country, 
the price declined, and nearly every farmer in town aban- 
doned the cultivation. Some probably, about this time, were 
also dissuaded, from scruples as to its bearing on the cause of 
temperance. The average sale of hops from 1S06 to 1850 
has been about 13£ cents per pound. 

It appears from the Inspection books of Gen. Wm. P. 
Riddle, there were raised in the town of Bedford in 1833, 
97,320 pounds of hops, the average sale of which in Boston, 
for that year, was 16£ per pound, making an amount of 
$15,571 20 cents. It may be asked, have the farmers of 
Bedford realized so large a sum of money, for any other 
crop, during a single year of the last century. Still such is 
the uncer tainty of the article, that taking one year with 
another, it may be questioned whether there are not other 
articles more safe for the grower. 


Fish, in former years, was a great source of supply to the 
wants of the inhabitants. It was an old saying, " We hope 
meat will last till fish comes, and fish will last till meat 
comes." Hunting, also, afforded some supplies at an early 
period. Such entries as the following are not uncommon in 
the Patten diary. 

" 1757, Jan. 5. Went a hunting. 6th. Hunted in com- 
pany with Wm. McDowell, Samuel Cochran, John Little 
and Thomas McLaughlin, and got a deer a-piece. 8th. 
Bought two hind quarters of venison from Samuel Richards, 
44 lbs weight, at Is. 6d. per pound, amounting to £3 6s., old 
tenor. 11th. Went a hunting, and helped to kill a yearling 
buck, with Thomas Kennedy. 12th. Killed a doe fawn and 
yearling buck." The same year we find, "June 7th. Shared, 
at the setting place, three salmon and part of another." 

Some now living have seen 50 or 60 salmon taken at a 
haul. It was a kind arrangement of Providence that in the 
pressing wants of the early settlement, there should be such 
a supply of fish and game. 

The first noted place of fishing in this part of the country, 
was at Cohos brook, the outlet of Massabesec pond into 


Merrimac river. The place next in importance was Amos- 
keag falls. Yast quantities of river fish, of various kinds, 
were taken at these places, annually, until the river was 
obstructed by mill-dams and canal-locks. Hundreds of people 
resorted hither in the fishing season to catch and buy fish, 
such as alewives, lamprey-eels, shad and salmon. The 
alewives were generally taken by a scoop-net, the eels by an 
eel-pot of wicker-work, set generally in the falls. Shad and 
salmon were taken by the scoop-net and seine, the net being 
put in the falls and swift water, and the seine drawn in the 
river. The first enactments of the Legislature, respecting 
the taking of fish, were for Cohos brook. Regulations were 
made that a pass or vacant space should be left for the fish to 
go through the dam. The Hill seine was drawn near the 
mouth of the Piscataquog. The Parker seine was drawn on 
the same ground. The Griffin seine was drawn at the head 
of Smith's falls, on the east side of the river ; and the Patten 
seine was drawn on the west side of the river, at the head of 
Smith's falls. These two last seines fished on the same 
place, but drew in on opposite shores. The Nutt seine drew 
on the opposite side, against Crosby's brook, at the head of 
Smith's falls, against Patterson rock. At this seine, 1762, 
at one haul of the net, 2500 shad were taken. About the 
same time, at the Carthagenian seine, drawn on the east side 
of Carthagenian island, and opposite Thomas Chandler, Esq., 
1500 shad were taken at one haul of the net. There was 
also Caratunk seine at the head, and Sky seine at the foot, 
of Walker's falls, on the west side. Quantities of fish were 
taken by fly-nets during the Summer and after. Shad and 
salmon were scooped up by the scoop-net. This was carried 
on at the head of the above named island. It would seem 
incredible what quantities of fish once filled these waters. 
The smaller kind were used to manure the land, as is now 
the case in Connecticut, along the Sound. In one instance, 
a man diving into the river to disentangle the net, caught a 
shad in his hand as he rose. 

There were regular fishing companies ; twelve men would 
work a seine, at an expense of about $120 for twine, lead, 
ropes, cord, &c, with boats and oars. Sometimes shares were 
sold as high as twenty or thirty dollars a share ; generally, 
they were worth from five to twelve dollars. The fishing 
season commenced at the opening of the apple-tree blossoms. 
Fishermen observe the phenomena of nature. 



1767. Unmarried men from 16 to 60 years, - - - - 30 

Married men from 16 to 60, 43 

Boys from 16 and under, 93 

Men 60 and above, --------- 13 

Females unmarried, ---------117 

Females married, --------- 51 

Slaves, (male, 6, female, 3,) - 9 

Widows, -6 

Total, 362 

1775. We have the following return, dated, " Bedford, 
Oct. 27, 1775. 

Males under 16, 109 

Males from 16 to 50 not in army, ----- 93 

Males above 50, 28 

Persons gone to the war, -------14 

Females in all, ---------- 241 

Negroes and slaves for life, -------10 

Total, 495 

" Hillsborough, ss., Oct. 27, 1775. 

"Then personally appeared John Bell, and made solemn 
oath to his fidelity and impartiality in numbering the souls in 
Bedford, and making return of the several ages and sexes, as 
in the columns above thereof. 

" Sworn before, Matt. Patten, J. P." 

" There are 37 guns lacking to equip the inhabitants of 
Bedford. There are llf lbs. powder in Bedford, according 
to information, and no town stock of ammunition. 

John Bell." 

] 783 Population, 762 ; Framed Houses, 93. 

1800 " 1182. 

1S10 " 1296. 

1S20 " 1375. 

1830 « 1554. 

1840 " 1543. 

1850 " 1913; Dwelling Houses, 312; Fam- 
ilies, 344; Farmers, 267; Laborers, 161; Shoemakers, 10; 




Blacksmiths, 5 ; Brickmakers, 33 ; Machinists, 10 ; Carpen- 
ters, 8 ; Physicians, 2 ; Clergyman, 1 : Lawyer, 1 ; Teacher, 
1 ; Scholars attending school this year, 589 ; Value of real 
estate owned, $594,600." — Census for 1850. 




ortion of adults and children 

not given, 































































































































































ortion of children and adults not given, 


















Mrs. Margaret Aiken lived to be 97. She had been a 
professor of religion more than 70 years. She had twelve 
children baptized in the old meeting-house. 


Mrs. Sarah Coburn lived to be 96. She had heard White- 
field preach in Dracut. 

Dea. Benj. Smith, one of the first elders, came with his 
wife, then a girl, from the north of Ireland, 1738, — he being 
19, and she 21. They were married in Londonderry soon 
after their arrival ; after which, they came to this town, and 
lived together in the married state seventy-two years. 

Mrs. Rundlet died in 1845, at the age of 95. 

1837. — There were seven persons died, whose united ages 
would be 550 years, viz. : Dea. John Craig, 74 ; Mrs. Sarah 
Moor, 81 ; Mr. Josiah Tinker, 76 ; Mrs. Hannah Merrill, 81 ; 
Mrs. AnnM. Riddle, 72; Mr. John Wallace, 90; Dea. Ste- 
phen Thurston, 76. 

1839. — There were seven persons died, whose united ages 
would be 588 years, viz. : Mr. Joseph Patten, 80 ; Mr. John 
Moor, 93 ; Mr. Benj. Sprague, 87 ; Mrs. Hannah Patten, 77 ; 
Mr. David Stevens, 86; Mr. David Riddle, 84; Mrs. Benj. 
Sprague, 81. 


List of Marriages, by Rev, Thomas Savage, during his 
ministry ; in which one or both the parties belonged to 

1825. Stephen Goffe and Mary Cutler. 

1826. John Goffe and Jane Riddle. 

Rufns Kendrick and Hannah Chandler. 
Eleazer Dole and Jane D. Riddle. 
Stephen Kendrick and Asenath Chandler. 
Joshua Vose and Mary Houston. 
John McGaw and Nancy Goffe. 

1827. Silas Parkhurst and Miss Perry. 
Henry Wood and Harriet McGaw. 
Mr. Morrison and Miss Sprague. 
Andrew Savage and Miss Smith. 
Stephen Nichols and Jane Rider. 
Freeman Nichols and Mary J. Gillis. 


1828. George Webber and Huldah Boardmam 
Daniel Moor and Mary McQiiesten. 
Thomas Holbrook and Asenath Riddle. 
David P. Smith and Mary J. Downs. 
William Riddle and Anna Riddle. 
John P. Houston and Eunice Atwood. 

1829. James Walker and Betsey Parker. 
Daniel Barnard and Martha Riddle. 
Hiram Dunlap and Dolly Ferson. 
Samuel Corning and Clarissa Darrah. 
George Hodgman and Mary Parker. 
Ira Spaulding and Eliza J. Atwood. 
John Swan and Jane Campbell. 
Caleb Kendrick and Sally Chandler. 
Matthew Parker and Ismena Darrah. 
Adam Chandler and Sarah McAllister. 

1830. Ephraim Abbott and Isabella A. Wallace. 
Benjamin F. Riddle and Abigail D. Colley. 
Paul T. Campbell and Mary Seavey. 
Adam N. Patten and Clarissa Hodgman. 
John Craig and Mary Kittredge. 

Josiah Thissel and Abigail Flint. 
Elijah Atwood and Submit Walker. 
Nehemiah Kittredge and Betsey Tinker. 
Franklin Moore and Annis Chandler. 

1831. Zaccheus Patten and Achsah McAllister. 
Humphrey Moore and Mary J. French. 
Benjamin F. Ellis and Jane Houston. 
Eben W. Goffe and Hannah P. French. 
Lancey Weston and Elizabeth Moore. 
Rodney McLaughlin and Abigail Hodgman. 
Reuben Moore and Margaret T. Riddle. 
Samuel Melvin and Nancy Swett. 

1832. Samuel Colley and Lydia Atwood. 
Frederick Wallace and Margaret A. French. 
John H. McConihe and Martha G. Muzzey. 
Asa D. Pollard and Hannah Wallace. 
Josiah Kittredge and Sarah W. French. 
William Gardner and Sophronia Martin. 



1832. Calvin Clement and Mary J. B. Smith. 
Robert French and Harriet Parker. 
Daniel Langmaid and Lucy Tucker. 
Samuel Campbell and Rebecca Kingsbury- 
Joseph C. Moor and Martha McQ,uesten. 
James French and Nancy French. 
William Miltimore and Mary Orr. 

John Stevens and Eliza Barnes. 
James Gardner and Nancy Bursiel. 
John Parker and Eliza Goffe. 

1833. Mr. Boutwell and Nancy J. Barnes. 
John F. Shaw and Emily Clogston. 
Moses E. Stevens and Sarah A. Parker, 
Isaac Currier and Dolly C. Gage. 
Daniel Vose and Fanny Chase. 
Rowell Seavey and Eliza Butterfield. 
Horace White and Eliza McL. Moore. 
Albert Atwood and Ann J. D. Colley. 

1834. Francis B. Merriam and Mary W. Sawyer. 
Jonathan Ireland and Hannah W. Thurston. 
Adam Gilmore and Lucinda Silver. 
Abijah Hodgman, and Mary Barnard. 
William Manning and Mary A. Walker. 
James Parker and Elizabeth I. Gage. 

John Smith and Sophia P. Darrah. 
David Q,uimby and Lucinda Hardy. 
Senter Farley and Louisa Flint. 
Warren Fletcher and Susannah Barnes. 

1835. William B. Tuttle and Mary W. Barnes. 
James Yarnum and Eliza McQuesten. 
Ephraim C. Hardy and Mary F. Q,uimby, 
John Butterfield and Betsey Campbell. 
Albert Riddle and Sarah Wheeler. 
Thomas W. Gillis and Betsey C. French, 
William McCain and Sarah V. Peabody. 
Daniel Roby and Achsah P. Smith. 
Robert Boyd and Susannah Riddle. 

1836. Henry Rankin and Caroline Fry. 
Phineas French and Betsey Foster. 
William A. Hobart and Lucinda Cady. 
William Cady and Hannah Butler. 


1836. John Boynton and Sarah Woods. 
Benjamin Hall and Sarah M. Atwood. 
Phineas Colby and Nancy Darrah. 
John M. Wallace and Maria W. Darrah. 
William Moore and Mary A. Kendall. 
Isaac C. Cutler and Rebecca M. Harvill. 
Mr. Peabody and Elvira Atwood. 

1837. Eleazer Dole and Charlotte Walker. 

Jonathan D. Hutchinson and Nancy J, McConihe. 
James Parker and Jane W. Darrah. 
Charity L. Dunn and Abigail Parker. 
Stephen Prince and Rebecca M. Houston. 
William A. Burke and Catherine French. 
William S. Anderson and Harriet Atwood. 
Leonard Kittredge and Miriam W. Hurd. 
Hiram Q,uimby and Louisa Winslow. 
Hiram Mace and Rosannah B. Cady. 

1838. John Adams and Catherine Chandler. 
George Campbell and Harriet Hardy. 
Moses E. Emerson and Margaret Gilmore. 
John D. Armstrong and Sarah D. Atwood. 
Lewis F. Rider and Susan H. Atwood. 
Isaac Campbell and Mary A. Payne. 
Nathaniel Flint and Sarah A. Parkhurst. 

1839. Edward Barr and Jane G. Atwood. 
John McCallister and Merab French. 
Elijah P. Parkhurst and Sarah J. Gage. 
Oliver L. Kendall and Betsey R. Gage. 
Thomas Howe and Catherine Bullock. 
Henry C. Boswith and Lucy C. Barnes. 
Frederick A. Hodgman and Maria Houston. 
Richard Hadley and Mary Giddings. 

1840. Samuel N. Southworth and Mary Darrah. 
Samuel Patten and Keziah Parker. 
William P, Moore and Betsey J. Richardson. 
Ira Barr and Nancy Barr, 

Mark Glines and Harriet A. Wood. 
Timothy Townsend and Nancy Stevens. 
John R. Moore and Hannah Gardner. 
Samuel Hathaway and Susannah Gilmore. 
Thomas Bursiel and Olive Atwood. 


1841. William Bursiel and Nancy Gardner. 
Daniel Moor and Sarah Stevens. 
William R. French and Sally D. Riddle, 
Nathan B. Taplin and Lydia L. Hardy. 
Richard Dole and Sarah A. Ferson. 

Mr. Hendry and Rachel Moore. 
Josiah H. Folsom and Lucy F. Darrah. 
Thomas G. Worthley and Rebecca Moore. 

1842. Nathan H. Richardson and Ann M. Parker, 
Adam Butterfield and Hannah Campbell. 
Thomas Pierce and Asenath R. McPherson* 
David M. Howe and Sarah B. Stratton. 
Thomas Hardy and Roxana P. Haseltine, 
David Clarke and Susan J. French. 
Ephraim White and Margaret A. Moore. 

1843. Thomas J. Lovett, and Elizabeth A. Dowse, 
Samuel S. S. Hill and Mary D. S. Gilmore, 

1844. John N. Barr and Mary Annis French. 
Daniel K. Marshall and Maria Butterfield. 
Daniel W. Fling and Asenath Patten. 

1845. William Goffe and Betsey D. Riddle. 
Rufus Merrill and Susan Spofford. 
James Darrah and Cynthia Wallace. 
Levi Putnam and Harriet E. Stevens. 
Thomas U. Gage and Dolly A. French. 
George Stark and Elizabeth A. Parker. 
Levi Dodge and Emily E. Mullet. 
Thomas G. Holbrook and Submit Atwood. 
Charles H. Goddard, and Elizabeth S. Sheparct 

1846. Daniel K. Mack and Mary A. French. 
Robert Mears and Lucretia C. Mitchell. 
Darius F. Robinson and Sarah A. Holbrook r 
John U. French and Sarah R. Parker. 
Robert Sloan and Mary H. Page. 

Charles French and Frances A. Nichols. 
E. S. Goodwin and Ann J. Nevens. 
Jesse Anderson and Mary J. Sanborn. 

1847. Rodney McLaughlin and Jerusha Spofford, 
Rodolphus C. Briggs and Sarah C. Houston^ 


1848. Noble Prime and Sarah Harvill. 

Calvin R. Butterfield and Sarah H, Legro. 
Jonas Paige and Sarah A. Adams. 

1849. David Stevens and Sarah F. French. 
William Clement and Nancy J. Swett. 
Willard Gardner and Martha A. Cheever. 
Hartwell Nichols and Mary Manning. 
Joseph Manning and Miriam N. Hall. 
Ebenezer B. Merrill and Letitia A. Gage. 

1850. John D. Armstrong and Jane M. Wells. 
Elijah C. Stevens and Julia A. Barr. 
John Adams and Lavina Patten. 
William Moore, jr., and Caroline A. Gage. 
Alfred McAffee and Nancy P. B. Shepard. 

In addition to the above, between fifty and sixty mar- 
riages have been solemnized by the present pastor, in which 
both the parties belonged out of town. Other marriages, in 
town, by other clergymen, are not here recorded ; and it is 
possible there may be, now and then, a slight error in names 
and dates of those that are recorded. A large number of the 
natives of this town, have at different times, emigrated to 
the West. In Michigan and Wisconsin, they are numerous ; 
especially at Beloit, in the latter State. 


The following are the names of those who have enjoyed 
collegiate education, with the College, and year of graduation. 
H. U. signifies Harvard University; W. C, William's Col- 
lege ; D. C, Dartmouth College ; B. U., Brown University; 
M. C, Middlebury College ; Y. C, Yale College ; U. C, 
Union College, Schenectady. (*) signifies deceased. 

Joseph Goffe * D. C, 1791. 

John Vose * " 1795. 

Benjamin Orr,* " 1798. 

Thomas Rand, Clergyman, B. U., 1804. 

Joseph Bell, Member of the Bar, Boston, D. C, 1807. 

John Walker, Clergyman, Weston, Vt., " 1808. 

William Gordon* " 1811. 

Joseph E. Worcester, Author, Cambridge, Y. C, 1811. 


William Orr * D. 0., 1816. 

Adam Gordon, Mem. of the Bar, New Haven, " 1817. 

John Aiken, Treas. Manufact'ng Co. Andover, " 1818. 

Isaac Orr* Y. C., 1819. 

Robert Riddle * " 1819. 

Freeman Riddle * " 1819. 

Robert Orr * " 1820. 

James McGaw, Mem. of the Bar, N. Y. City, D. C, 1820. 

Isaac O. Barnes, Clerk U. S. Court, Boston, M. C, 1820. 

Adams Moor, Physician, Littleton, D. C, 1822. 

Gilman Parker * " 1824. 

Silas Aiken, Clergyman, Rutland, Vt., " 1825. 

Cornelius Walker, Teacher, Boston, " 1828. 

David Aiken, Mem. of Bar, Greenfield, Mass. " 1830. 

Samuel Chandler,* U. C, 1834. 

John Chandler,* D. C, 1836. 

Peter T. Woodbury, Member Bar, N. Y. City, " 1839. 

Selwyn B. Bowman * " 1840. 

Wm. R. Woodbury, Mem. Bar, Sheboygan, Wis, " 1843. 

Leonard French, Physician, Ashby, Mass., " 1843. 

Lemuel C. Spofford, Clergy., Fon du lac, Wis, " 1843. 

James W. Savage, Mem. of Bar, N. Y. City, H. U., 1847. 

William Stark. Student at Law, Troy, N. Y., W. C, 1850. 


1750. John Goffe, Moderator. John McLaughlin, Town 
Clerk. Samuel Patten, Robert Walker, Thomas Chandler, 
Selectmen. Fergus Kennedy, Constable. 

1751. Moses Barron, Mod. John McLaughlin, Clerk. 
Samuel Patten, Moses Barron, Robert Walker, Selectmen. 
Gawn Riddle, Con. 

1752. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, John McCtuig, Matthew Little, Selectmen. 
Robert Walker, Treas. Hugh Riddle, Con. 

1753. Samuel Patten, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
James Little, Samuel Patten, James Orr, Selectmen. Robert 
Walker, Treas. William Moor, Con. 

1754. Samuel Patten, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Hugh Riddle, Thomas Wallace, James Walker, Selectmen. 
Robert Walker, Treas. Matthew Little, Con. 


1755. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
John Moor, Hugh Riddle, William Moor, Selectmen. Moses 
Barron, Treas. Robert Gilmore. Con. 

1756. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
William Thornton, Gawn Riddle, Matthew Little, Select- 
men. Moses Barron, Treas. Robert Walker, Con. 

1757. William Thornton, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, William Thornton, Robert Walker, Selectmen. 
Matthew Patten, Treas. Gawn Riddle, Con. 

1758. Matthew Little, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
James Little, Daniel Moor, Robert Gilmore, Selectmen. Mat- 
thew Patten, Treas. Francis Barnet, Con. 

1759. Matthew Little, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Matthew Patten, William Holmes, John Mc&uig, Selectmen. 
Samuel Patten, Treas. Thomas Wallace, Con. 

1760. John Bell, Jr., Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Francis Barnet, John Bell, Jr., Benjamin Smith, Selectmen. 
William Holmes, Treas. James Little, Con. 

1761. John Moor, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. Mat- 
thew Little, Joseph , William Holmes, Selectmen. 

James Little, Treas. Samuel Patten, Con. 

1762. James Caldwell, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
James Caldwell, John Goffe, James Lyon, Selectmen. James 
Little, Treas. William Holmes, Con. Col. John Goffe, 

1763. John Shepard, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
James Caldwell, James Aiken, John Bell, Selectmen. James 
Little, Treas. Richard McAlister, Con. John Goffe, Rep. 

1764. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, John Wallace Selectmen. 
James Little, Treas. John Moor, Con. John Goffe, Rep. 

1765. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Matthew Patten, Moses Barron, James Patterson, Selectmen. 
James Little, Treas. John McLaughlin, Con. John Goffe, 

1766. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, Daniel Moore, Selectmen. 
James Little, Treas. John Bell, Con. John Goffe, Rep. 

1767. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, Thomas Boies, Selectmen. 
James Little, Treas. Joseph Scobey, Con. John Goffe, 

1768. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 


Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, James Vose, Selectmen. 
James Little, Treas. James Caldwell, Con. John Goffe, 

1769. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, Samuel Vose, Selectmen. 
James Little, Treas. Thomas Boies, Con. John Goffe, Rep. 

1770. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, Thomas McLaughlin, Select- 
men. James Little, Treas. Samuel Vose, Con. John 
Goffe, Rep. 

1771. Moses Barron, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Moses Barron, Matthew Patten, John Aiken, Selectmen. 
Matthew Little, Treas. David McClary, Con. John Goffe, 

1772. James Martin, Mod. Matthew Patten, Clerk. 
Matthew Patten, Robert Walker, Hugh Orr, Selectmen. 
Matthew Little, Treas. Matthew McAffee, Con. John 
Goffe, Rep. 

1773. John Moor, Mod. John Bell, Clerk. John Bell, 
John Little, Adam Dickey, Selectmen. Matthew Little, 
Treas. James Walker, Con. John Goffe, Rep. 

1774. John Little, Mod. John Bell, Clerk. Adam 
Dickey, John Little, James Aiken, Selectmen. Matthew Lit- 
tle, Treas. John Wallace, Con. John Goffe, Rep. 

1775. John Little, Mod. John Bell, Clerk. Adam 
Dickey, John Bell, Whitfield Gilmore, Selectmen. Matthew 
Little, Treas. James Walker, Con. Paul Dudley, Rep. 

1776. Samuel Patten, Mod. John Bell, Clerk. John 
Goffe, Daniel Moor, John Orr, Selectmen. Matthew Little, 
Treas. John McKinney, Con. Paul Dudley, Rep. 

1777. Samuel Vose, Mod. William White, Clerk. 
Hugh Orr, Thomas McLaughlin, John Goffe, Selectmen. 
Matthew Little, Treas. Thomas Cairns, Con. Paul Dud- 
ley, Rep. 

1778. James Martin, Mod. William White, Clerk. John 
Orr, James Boies, James Vose, Selectmen. Matthew Little, 
Treas. John Goffe, Con. Paul Dudley, Rep. 

1779. James Martin, Mod. William White, Clerk. 
Thomas Boies, William White, James Vose, Selectmen. Mat- 
thew Little, Treas. Thomas McLaughlin, John Aiken, Con. 
John Orr, Rep. 

1780. James Martin, Mod. William White, Clerk. 
Thomas Boies, James Vose, William White, Selectmen. 


James Aiken, Trcas. Adam Dickey, Joseph Houston, Con. 
Samuel Patten, Rep. 

1781. Hugh Qrr, Mod. William White, Clerk. Wil- 
liam White, James Smith, Hugh Orr, Selectmen. John Orr, 
Treas. James Vose, James Aiken, Cons. Samuel Patten, 

1782. James Martin, Mod. Thomas McLaughlin, Clerk. 
Thomas McLaughlin, Stephen Dole, Samuel Vose, Select- 
men. John Orr, Treas. James Martin, James Smith, Cons. 
John Orr, Rep. 

1783. John Orr, Mod. John Rand, Clerk. John Rand, 
John Wallace, John Dunlap, Selectmen. John Orr, Treas. 
Robert Alexander, Whitefield Gilmore, Cons. Matthew 
Thornton, Rep. 

1784. James Martin, Mod. John Rand, Clerk. Zacha- 
riah Chandler, James Vose, Adam Dickey,. Selectmen. Mat- 
thew Patten, Treas. John Moor, John Orr, Cons. James 
Martin, Rep. 

1785. Stephen Dole, Mod. Josiah Gillis, Clerk. Zach- 
ariah Chandler, Stephen Dole, Josiah Gillis, Selectmen. Mat- 
thew Patten, Treas. John Gardner, John Dunlap, Cons. 
James Martin, Rep. 

17S6. Samuel Vose, Mod. Josiah Gillis, Clerk. Josiah 
Gillis, James Wallace, Stephen Dole, Selectmen. Matthew 
Patten, Treas. James Moor, Robert Matthews, Cons. Ste- 
phen Dole, Rep. 

1787. John Orr, Mod. Josiah Gillis, Clerk. Josiah Gil- 
lis, John Orr, Jesse Worcester, Selectmen. Matthew Patten, 
Treas. Daniel Moor, Asa Barren, Cons. Zachariah Chand- 
ler, Rep. 

1788. Samuel Vose, Mod. William Moor, Clerk. Wil- 
liam Moor, jr., Stephen Dole, Jesse Worcester, Selectmen. 
Matthew Patten, Treas. Stephen French, George Orr, Cons. 
Stephen Dole, Rep. 

1789. John Bell, Mod. William Moor, Clerk. William 
Moor, Adam Dickey, Stephen Dole, Selectmen. Matthew 
Patten, Treas. John McAllister, Adam Smith, Cons. Ste- 
phen Dole, Rep. 

1790. Stephen Dole, Mod. William Moor, Clgrh Wil- 
liam Moor, Stephen Dole, Adam Dickey, Selectmen. Mat- 
thew Patten, Treas. John Gordon, John Mcintosh, Cons. 
Stephen Dole, Rep. 



1791. Stephen Dole, Mod. William McAffee, Clerk. 
Robert Gilchrist, David Riddle, Stephen Dole, Selectmen. 
Matthew Patten, Treas. William Barns, Con. James 
Martin, Rep. 

1792. Samuel Vose, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, David Riddle, Robert Gilchrist, Selectmen. Matthew 
Patten, Treas. Benjamin Barron, Con. Stephen Dole, Rep. 

1793. John Bell, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, David Riddle, Robert Gilchrist, Selectmen. Matthew 
Patten, Treas. Benj. Barron, John Patten, Cons. Stephen 
Dole, Rep. 

1794. Samuel Vose, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Riddle, John Patten, Samuel Barr, Selectmen. Matthew 
Patten, Treas. Josiah Gordon, Con. Stephen Dole, Rep. 

1795. John Orr, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, David Riddle, Samuel Barr, Selectmen. Matthew 
Patten, Treas. Josiah Gordon, Con. John Orr, Rep. 

1796. Stephen Dole, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, Samuel Barr, David Riddle, Selectmen. John Orr, 
Treas. William Riddle, Con. John Orr, Rep. 

1797. Stephen Dole, Mod. Phinehas Aiken, Clerk. 
William McAffee, Phinehas Aiken, John Burns, Selectmen. 
Isaac Riddle, Treas. William Riddle, Con, John Orr, Rep. 

1798. William Moor, Mod. Phinehas Aiken, Clerk. 
Phinehas Aiken, William Moor, William Riddle, Selectmen. 
Isaac Riddle, Treas. Thomas Wallace, Con. Isaac Riddle, 

1799. Stephen Dole, Mod. William McAffee, Clerk. 
William McAffee, William Riddle, Samuel Chandler, Select- 
men. Isaac Riddle Treas. Nathan Barnes, Con. Isaac 
Riddle, Rep. 

1800. John Orr, Mod. William McAffee, Clerk. Wil- 
liam McAffee, William Riddle, Samuel Chandler, Selectmen. 
Isaac Riddle, Treas. John Riddle, Con. David Patten, Rep. 

1801. John Orr, Mod. Phinehas Aiken, Clerk. Phine- 
has Aiken, William Riddle, John Craig, Selectmen. Isaac 
Riddle, Treas. Josiah Gordon, Con. David Patten, Rep. 

1502. John Orr, Mod. Phinehas Aiken, Clerk. Phine- 
has Aiken, John Craig, Josiah Gordon, Selectmen. Isaac 
Riddle, Treas. William Riddle, Con. David Patten, Rep. 

1503. John Orr, Mod. Phinehas Aiken, Clerk. Phine- 
has Aiken, Josiah Wallace, Nathan Barnes, Selectmen. Isaac 
Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Phinehas Aiken, Rep. 


1804. John Orr, Mod. Phinehas Aiken, Clerk. Phine- 
has Aiken, Nathan Barnes, Samuel Chandler, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Trcas. Joseph Patten, Con. Phinehas 
Aiken, Rep. 

1805. William Moor, Mod. Samuel Chandler, Clerk. 
Samuel Chandler, Nathan Barnes, David Stevens, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. William 
Riddle, Rep. 

1806. William Moor, Mod. Samuel Chandler, Clerk. 
Samuel Chandler, John Holbrook, David Stevens, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. William 
Riddle, Rep. 

1807. John Orr, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, David Stevens, John Holbrook, Selectmen. William 
Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. William Riddle, Rep. 

1808. John Orr, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, John Holbrook, Moody M. Stevens, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Samuel 
Chandler, Rep. 

1809. Nathan Barnes, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. Da- 
vid Patten, Moody M. Stevens, Richard Dole, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Samuel 
Chandler, Rep. 

IS 10. John Orr, Mod. David Patten, Clerk. David 
Patten, Richard Dole, Moody M. Stevens, Selectmen, Wil- 
liam Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Samuel Chand- 
ler, Rep. 

1811. Samuel Chandler, Mod. Moody M. Stevens, 
Clerk. Moody M. Stevens, Joseph Colley, jr., James Darrah, 
Selectmen. William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. 
John Orr, Rep. 

1812. Richard Dole, Mod. Moody M. Stevens, Clerk. 
Moody M. Stevens, Joseph Colley, jr., James Darrah, Select- 
men. William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. John 
Orr, Rep. 

1813. William Riddle, Mod. Moody M. Stevens, Clerk. 
David Patten, Moody M. Stevens, Joseph Colley, jr., Select- 
men. William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Isaac 
Riddle, Rep. 

1814. Richard Dole, Mod. Moody M. Stevens, Clerk. 
Moody M. Stevens, Joseph Colley, jr., David Patten, Select- 
men. William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Phin- 
ehas Aiken, Rep. 


1815. Richard Dole, Mod. Moody M. Stevens, Clerk. 
Moody M. Stevens, Samuel Chandler, William Moor, Select* 
men. William Riddle, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Sam- 
uel Chandler, Rep. 

1816. Isaac Riddle, Mod. William Moor, Clerk. Wil- 
liam Moor, William Moor, jr., Josiah Gordon, Selectmen. 
Samuel Chandler, Treas. Joseph Patten, Con. Samuel 
Chandler, Rep. 

1817. Joseph Colley, jr., Mod. William Moor, Clerk. 
William Moor, William Moor, jr., Josiah Gordon, Selectmen. 
Samuel Chandler, Treas. Solomon Gage, Con. Samuel 
Chandler, Rep. 

1818. Joseph Colley, jr., Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. 
William Moor, jr., James Parker, John McAllister, Selectmen. 
Samuel Chandler, Treas. John Mclntire, Con. Samuel 
Chandler, Rep. 

1819. Joseph Colley, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. Wil- 
liam Moor, jr., John McAllister, Joseph Colley, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. Josiah 
Gordon, Rep. 

1820. Joseph Colley, jr., Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. 
Moody M. Stevens, Ebenezer French, William Patten, Select- 
men. William Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. 
Josiah Gordon, Rep. 

1821. John Holbrook, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. 
Moody M. Stevens, Ebenezer French, William Patten, Select- 
men. Samuel Chandler, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, 
Con. Thomas Chandler, Rep. 

1822. Richard Dole, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. Eb- 
enezer French, Gawn Riddle, John Patten, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. Thomas 
Aiken, Rep. 

1823. Joseph Colley, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. Gawn 
Riddle, John Patten, Samuel Chandler, Selectmen. William 
Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. William 
Moor, Rep. 

1824. Richard Dole, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. Gawn 
Riddle, Joseph Colley, Leonard C. French, Selectmen. Wil- 
liam Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. William 
Moor, Rep. 

1825. Richard Dole, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. Gawn 
Riddle, Joseph Colley, Leonard C. French, Selectmen. Wil* 


Ham Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. William 
Riddle, Rep. 

1S26. Joseph Colley, Mod. Alfred Foster, Clerk. Joseph 
Colley, Leonard C. French, Robert Riddle, Selectmen. Wil- 
liam Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. William 
Riddle, Rep. 

1827. John Patten, Mod. Samuel Chandler, Clerk. 
Samuel Chandler, Robert Riddle, Gawn Riddle, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Patrick McLaughlin, Con. Eben- 
ezer French, Rep. 

1828. Joseph Colley, Mod. Samuel Chandler, Clerk. 
Samuel Chandler, William Moor, jr., Gawn Riddle, Select-' 
men. William Riddle, Treas. Thomas Rundlet, Con. 
Joseph Colley, Rep, 

1829. Moody M. Stevens, Mod. Leonard Walker, Clerk. 
William Moor, Gardner Nevens, Leonard Walker, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Charles Aiken, Leonard C. French, 
John Patten, Willard Parker, Cons. Joseph Colley, Rep. 

1830. Joseph Colley, Mod. Leonard Walker, Clerk. 
Leonard Walker, Gardner Nevens, Gawn Riddle, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Isaac Riddle, Con. William Rid- 
dle, Rep. 

1831. Joseph Colley, Mod. Isaac Riddle, Clerk. Leon- 
ard C. French, Samuel Chandler, Daniel Moor, Selectmen. 
William Riddle, Treas. Rufus Merrill, Con. William Rid- 
dle, Rep. 

1832. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Isaac Riddle, Clerk. 
Samuel Chandler, Daniel Moor, jr., Daniel Gordon, Select- 
men. Leonard C. French, Treas. Rufus Merrill, Con. 
William Moor, Rep. 

1833. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Leonard Walker, Clerk. 
William Moor, Mace Moulton, John Barr, Selectmen. Gawn 
Riddle, Treas. Frederick Wallace, Con. William Moor, 

1834. Joseph Colley, Mod. Leonard Walker, Clerk. 
Mace Moulton, John Barr, Leonard C. French, Selectmen. 
Gawn Riddle, Treas. Frederick Wallace, Con. James 
McK. Wilkins, Rep. 

1835. Joseph Colley, Mod. Daniel Moor, jr., Clerk. 
William Moor, jr., Isaac Riddle, Gardner Nevens, Selectmen. 
Leonard C. French, Treas. Samuel Morrison, Con. Joseph 
Colley, Rep. 

1836. Joseph Colley, Mod. Frederick Wallace, Clerk. 


John Barr, Leonard C. French, 2d, Adam Chandler, Select- 
men. Thomas Chandler, Treas. Stephen Goffe, Con. 
James McK. Wilkins, Rep. 

1837. Joseph Colley, Mod. Frederick Wallace, Clerk. 
Daniel Moor, jr., Adam Chandler, Thomas G. Holbrook, 
Selectmen. Thomas Chandler, Treas. John Craig, jr., Con. 
James McK. Wilkins, Rep. 

1838. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Daniel Gordon, Clerk. 
Daniel Moor, jr., William Patten, William McD. Ferson, 
Selectmen. John McAllister, Treas. Chandler Spofford, 
John Craig, John Patten, Cons. Jonas B. Bowman, Rep. 

1839. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Daniel Gordon, Clerk. 
Daniel Moor, jr., William McD. Ferson, Rodney McLaughlin, 
Selectmen. John McAllister, Treas. John Patten, Chandler 
Spofford, Samuel Morrison, Cons. Jonas B. Bowman, Rep. 

1840. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Daniel Gordon, Clerk. 
John Patten, Moody M. Stevens, Joshua Vose, Selectmen. 
Leonard C. French, Treas. Chandler Spofford, Joseph Col- 
ley, Cons. John French, Rep. 

1841. F. G. Stark, Mod. Daniel Gordon, Clerk. Moody 
M. Stevens, Joshua Vose, Adam Chandler, Selectmen. 
Leonard C. French, Treas. Chandler Spofford, Con. 
Thomas Chandler, Rep. 

1842. F. G. Stark, Mod. John Parker, Clerk. Adam 
Chandler, John Barr, Rufus Merrill, Selectmen. Peter P. 
Woodbury, Treas. John D. Riddle, Con. Thomas Chand- 
ler, Rep. 

1843. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Daniel Gordon, Clerk. 
Rufus Morrill, Gardner Nevens, Rodney McLaughlin, Select- 
men. Leonard C. French, Treas. John D. Riddle, Con. 
William Patten, Rep. 

1844. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Andrew J. Dow, Clerk. 
Leonard C. French, 2d, Adam Chandler, Thomas W. Moor, 
Selectmen. John Barr, Treas. Daniel Barnard, Con. 
Leonard C. French, Rep. 

1845. Jonas B. Bowman, Mod. Andrew J. Dow, Clerk. 
Leonard C. French, 2d, Moody M. Stevens, John D. Riddle, 
Selectmen. Leonard C. French, Treas. Chandler Spofford, 
Frederick G. Stark, Cons. Leonard C. French, Rep. 

1846. William P. Riddle, Mod, Andrew J. Dow, Clerk. 
Leonard C. French, 2d, David Hamblet, Solomon Manning, 
Selectmen. Leonard C. French, Treas. John Goffe, Con. 
Leonard C. French, Rep. 

justices. 223 

1847. William P. Riddle, Mod. Andrew J. Dow, Clerk. 
John D. Riddle, Rodney McLaughlin, John D. Armstrong, 
Selectmen. Leonard C. French, Treas. William Moor, R. 
V. Greeley, Cons. Gardner Nevens, William P. Riddle, 

1848. William P. Riddle, Mod. Benj. F. Wallace, Clerk. 
William French, Rodney McLaughlin, Alfred McAfee, Select- 
men. Leonard C. French, Treas. William Moor, Con. 
Gardner Nevens, William P. Riddle, Reps. 

1849. Henry Hale, Mod. Benj. F. Wallace, Clerk. 
John Patten, William Moor, James Walker, Selectmen. Peter 
P. Woodbury, Treas. George W. Riddle, Con. Adam N. 
Patten, Chandler Spofford, Reps. 

1850. Adam Chandler, Mod. Matthew Barr, Andrew J. 
Dow, Clerks. Adam Chandler, William French, Thomas G. 
Holbrook, Selectmen. Peter P. Woodbury, Treas. Charles 
F. Shepard, Con. Leonard C. French, 2d, Andrew J. Dow, 



David Patten Justice of the Peace, December 2. 


John Orr, Justice of the Peace and Quorum, December 30. 


William Moor, Justice of the Peace, September 10. 


Thomas Chandler, Justice of the Peace, December 12. 


James Parker, Justice of the Peace, December 8. 


John Orr, of the Quorum. Thomas Chandler, 

David Patten, Peace. James Parker. 

Isaac Riddle, 


John Orr, Quorum. David Patten, 

Thomas Chandler, Peace, James Parker, 

William Moor, Isaac Riddle, 




John Orr, 
Thomas Chandler, 
William Moor, 



David Patten, 
James Parker, 
Isaac Riddle. 

John Orr, 
William Moor, 
David Patten, 



James Parker, 
Isaac Riddle, 
William Wallace. 

John Orr, 
William Moor, 
David Patten, 



James Parker, 
Isaac Riddle, 
William Wallace. 

John Orr, 
William Moor, 
David Patten, 



James Parker, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
William Wallace. 

John Orr, 
William Moor, 
David Patten, 



Peter P. Woodbury, 
William Wallace. 

William Moor, 
David Patten, 
Peter P. Woodbury. 



William Wallace, 
James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman. 

William Moor, 
David Patten, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
William Wallace, 



James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
Nathan Barnes, 
Joseph Colley. 

William Moor, 
David Patten, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 



James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley. 

William Moor, 
David Patten, 


James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 

William Moor, 
David Patten, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 



Joseph Colley, 
William P. Riddle. 

Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley, 
William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle. 




William Moor, 
David Patten, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 

William Moor, 
David Patten, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 

William Moor, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman. 

William Moor, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 

William Moor, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley, 

William Moor, 
John Holbrook, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley, 

William Moor, 
John Holbrook, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Samuel Chandler, 
James McK. Wilkins, 
Jonas B. Bowman. 
Joseph Colley, 
















Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley, 
William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle. 

Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley, 
William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle. 

Joseph Colley, 
William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Theodore A. Goffe. 

Joseph Colley, 
William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Theodore A. Goffe. 

William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Theodore A. Goffe, 
Mace Moulton. 

William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Mace Moulton, 
Thomas Rundlet, 
Isaac Riddle. 

William P. Riddle, 
William Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Mace Moulton, 
Thomas Rundlet. 
Isaac Riddle. 




William Moor, 

Quorum . 

William P. Riddle, 

John Holbrook, 

William Riddle, 

James McK. Wilkins, 

Gardner Nevens, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 


Mace Moulton, 

Samuel Chandler, 

Thomas Rundlet, 

Jonas B. Bowman, 

Isaac Riddle. 

Joseph Colley, 


William Moor, 


William P. Riddle, 

James McK. Wilkins, 

William Riddle, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 


Gardner Nevens, 

Samuel Chandler, 

Mace Moulton, 

Jonas B. Bowman, 

Thomas Rundlet, 

Joseph Colley, 


Isaac Riddle. 

William Moor, 


William P. Riddle, 

James McK. Wilkins 


Gardner Nevens, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 


Mace Moulton, 

Theodore A. Goffe, 

Thomas Rundlet, 

Samuel Chandler, 

Isaac Riddle, 

Jonas B. Bowman, 

John Parker, 

Joseph Colley, 

John Barr. 

William Riddle, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 

Joseph Colley, 

the State. 

William P. Riddle, 

William Moor, 


William Riddle, 

James McK. Wilkins. 

Gardner Nevens, 

Thomas Rundlet, 

Mace Moulton, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 


Isaac Riddle, 

Theodore A. Goffe, 

John Parker, 

Samuel Chandler, 

John Barr. 

Jonas B. Bowman, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 

William P. Riddle, 

the State. 

William Riddle, 

William Moor, 


Gardner Nevens, 

James McK. Wilkins, 


Mace Moulton, 

Thomas Rundlet, 

Isaac Riddle, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 


John Parker, 

Theodore A. Goffe, 

John Barr, 

Samuel Chandler, 

John Porter, 

Jonas B. Bowman, 

Silas Walker. 

Joseph Colley, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 

William P. Riddle, 

the State. 

Gardner Nevens, 

William Moor, 


Isaac Riddle, 

Thomas Rundlet, 

John Parker, 

Peter P. Woodbury, 


John Barr, 

Theodore A. Goffe, 

Silas Walker, 



Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
Joseph Colley, 

1841, (continued.) 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
William Moor, Quorum. 

Thomas Rundlet, 
Peter P. Woodbury, Peace. 

Theodore A. Goffe, 
Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P Riddle. 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
William Moor, Quorum. 

Thomas Rundlet, 
Peter P. Woodbury, 
Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Adam Chandler, 
Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Thomas Rundlet, Quorum. 

Peter P. Woodbury, 
Mace Moulton, 

Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Peter P. Woodbury, Quorum. 
Thomas Rundlet. 
Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Peter P. Woodbury, Quorum. 
Thomas Rundlet, 
Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 

Adam Chandler, 
David Hamblet. 

Gardner Nevens, 
Isaac Riddle, 
John Parker, 
John Barr, 
Silas Walker, 
Adam Chandler, 
David Hamblet, 
Moses Gage. 

William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
Isaac Riddle, 
John Parker, 
John Barr, 
Silas Walker, 
David Hamblet, 
Moses Gage, 
Daniel Gordon. 

Isaac Riddle, 
John Parker, 
John Barr, 
Silas Walker, 
Adam Chandler, 
David Hamblet, 
Moses Gage, 
Daniel Gordon, 
Leonard C. French, 2d. 

Isaac Riddle, 
John Parker, 
Silas Walker, 
Adam Chandler, 
Moses Gage, 
Daniel Gordon, 
Leonard C. French, 2d. 
Robert Dunlap, 
John D. Walker. 

Gardner Nevens, 
John Parker, 
Adam Chandler, 
Moses Gage, 
Daniel Gordon, 
Leonard C. French, 2d, 
Robert Dunlap, 
John D. Walker. 




Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Peter P. Woodbury, Quorum. 
Thomas Rundlet, 
Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Peter P. Woodbury, Quorum. 
Thomas Rundlet, 
Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
John Parker, 
Adam Chandler, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Peter P. Woodbury, Quorum. 
Thomas Rundlet, 
Adam Chandler, 
Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Samuel Chandler, 
Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
John Parker, 
Moses Gage, 
Leonard C. French, 2d, 


Frederick G. Stark, Throughout 
the State. 
Peter P. Woodbury, Quorum. 
Thomas Rundlet, 
Adam Chandler, 
Israel Fuller, 

Theodore A. Goffe, Peace. 

Jonas B. Bowman, 
William P. Riddle, 
Gardner Nevens, 
John Parker, 

John Parker, 
Adam Chandler, 
Moses Gage, 
Leonard C. French, 2d, 
Robert Dunlap, 
John D. Walker, 
John D. Riddle, 
Chandler Spofford. 

Moses Gage, 
Leonard C. French, 2d. 
Robert Dunlap, 
John D. Walker, 
John D. Riddle, 
Chandler Spofford, 
Leonard French, 
Daniel Gordon, 
John Barr, 
Reuben V. Greely, 
Henry Hale. 

Robert Dunlap, 
John D. Walker, 
John D. Riddle, 
Chandler Spofford, 
Leonard French, 
Daniel Gordon, 
John Barr, 
Reuben V. Greely, 
Henry Hale, 
Isaac Riddle, 
Andrew J. Dow, 
James Walker. 

Moses Gage, 
Leonard C. French, 2d. 
Robert Dunlap, 
John D. Walker, 
John D. Riddle, 
Chandler Spofford, 
John Barr, 
Reuben V. Greely, 
Henry Hale, 
Andrew J. Dow, 
James Walker. 



Roger Vose, Dec. 21. 

Jonathan Palmer, June 19. 


Daniel Mack, June 21. 



Persons who have held commissions in the Militia in the 
Town of Bedford. From Roster in the Adjutant General's 
Office, Concord. 

Stephen Dole, Colonel James Aiken, Captain. Phineas 
Aikin, Lieutenant James Gilmore, Ensign. William Dole, 
Cap. Nathan Barnes, Capt. Andrew Aiken, Capt. of 

Cavalry. James Moor, Lieut. Dunlap, Major. 

Bois, Capt. William Moor, Capt. James McLaugh- 
lin, Ens. John McAllister. Capt. Thomas Chandler, Capt. 
Joseph Colley, Capt. Thomas Barr, Capt. of Artillery, 
1815 to 1817. 

William Moore, appointed Captain, August 8, 1812 ; pro- 
moted Adjutant, July 4, 1816 ; promoted Colonel, June 20, 
1818; resigned, March 9, 1820. 

Moody M. Stevens, ap. Lieut. June 20, 1814; res. July 
26, 1816. 

Leonard C. French, ap. Ens. June 20, 1814; pro. Capt. 
July 26, 1816; res. June 23, 1818. 

Enoch Dole, ap. Lieut. July 26, 1816 ; pro. Capt. June 
23, 1818; res. Feb. 10. 1819. 

Jesse Parker, ap. Ens. July 26, 1816 ; pro. Lieut. June 23, 
1818 ; pro. Capt. Feb. 10, 1819 ; res. April 9, 1821. 

William Chandler, ap. Ensign, June 23, 1818 ; pro. Lieut. 
Feb. 10, 1819 ; pro. Capt. April 9, 1821 ; res. April 9, 1824. 

Robert Moor, ap. Ens. Feb. 10, 1819; pro. Lieut. April 9, 
1821 ; pro. Capt. April 9, 1824 ; res. Jan. 31, 1825. 

David Stevens, ap. Ens. Aug. 27, 1821 ; pro. Lieut. April 
9,1824; res. Jan. 31, 1825. 

Samuel Campbell, ap. Ens. April 9, 1824 ; pro. Capt. Feb. 
2, 1825 ; res. March 24, 1828. 

Benjamin Nichols, ap. Lieut. Feb. 2, 1825 ; pro. Capt. 
March 1, 1828 ; discharged, April 17, 1830. 

Joseph C. Moor, ap. Ens. Feb. 2, 1825 ; pro. Lieut. March 
1, 1828 ; pro. Capt. April 17, 1830 ; res. Feb. 8, 1832. 

Samuel G. Colley, ap. Ens. Sept. 5, 1829 ; pro. Lieut. 
April 17, 1830 ; pro. Capt. Feb. 20, 1S32 ; res. April 8, 1834. 

David Sprague, ap. Ens. April 17, 1830 : pro. Lieut. Feb. 
20, 1832 ; res. April 8, 1834. 

William Goflf, ap. Capt. April 9, 1834 ; res. Aug. 28, 1834. 


Rufus Merrill, ap. Capt. Aug. 28, 1834 ; res. Feb. 5, 1838. 
Nathaniel Moore, ap. Lieut. Aug. 28, 1834 ; pro. Capt. Feb. 

6, 1838 ; res. June 5, 1839. 

William A. Rundlett, ap. Ens. Aug. 28, 1834 ; pro. Lieut. 
May 22, 1838 ; res. March 14, 1839. 

William R. French, ap. Ens. May 23, 1838 ; pro. Capt. 
June 11, 1839 ; res. March 11, 1842. 

Frederick Hodgman, ap. Lieut. June 11, 1839 ; pro. Capt. 
March 11, 1842; res. July 7, 1843. 

William McAllister, ap. Ens. June 11, 1839; pro. Lieut. 
March 11, 1842; July 7, 1843. 

Benjamin Hall, ap. Ensign March 11, 1842; pro. Capt. 
July 7, 1843 ; res. March 20, 1844. 

Charles A. Moore, ap. Ens. July 7, 1843 ; res. May 27, 1844. 

Philip C. Flanders, ap. Capt. Oct. 13, 1845 ; removed by 
address, June Session, 1846. 

F. F. French, ap. Ens. Oct. 13, 1845 ; res. April 20, 1847. 

Thomas G. Worthley, ap. Lieut. Oct. 13, 1845 ; pro. Capt. 
April 20, 1847 ; res. April 6, 1848. 

Joseph H. Flint, ap. Ensign, April 20, 1847 ; pro. Lieut 
Aug. 24, 1847 ; pro. Capt. Sept. 4, 1848 ; res. May 1, 1849. 

James H. Moore, ap. Ens. Aug. 24, 1847 ; resigned Aug. 

7, 1848. 

Robert C. Moore, ap. Ens. Sept. 4, 1848 ; res. May 22, 

William Moore, 2d, ap. Lieut. Sept. 4, 1848, pro. Capt. 
May 1, 1849 ; now in commission. 

William P. Gage, ap. Lieut. May 22, 1849 ; now in com- 

Rufus K. Darrah, ap. Ens. May 22, 1849 ; now in com- 

George W. Goffe, ap. Ens. Aug. 24, 1849 ; now in com- 

In the year 1814, a company of exempts was formed in 
Bedford, numbering about 60 men, which was composed of 
men forty years of age, and upwards, who were not liable to 
do military duty according to law, but armed and equipped 
themselves at their own expense, for the protection of their 
country, which was then engaged in hostilities with England, 
and held themselves ready to march at a moment's warning. 
Their first officers were the following. 

Isaac Riddle, Capt. John Holbrook, Lieut. Samuel 
Chandler, 2d Lieut. William Riddle, Ensign. 


It will be perceived, that during the war of 1812. there 
were more than 200 men armed and equipped in the town of 
Bedford, who held themselves in readiness to march in 
defence of their country. At the time the British invaded 
Portsmouth, the company of exempts under Capt. Isaac 
Riddle, the Infantry under Capt. William Moore, and the 
Grenadiers, under Capt. William P. Riddle, met at the centre 
of the town, and drilled every day for two weeks, expecting 
hourly to have orders to march to meet the enemy at 

In the year 1815, the Infantry Company, embodying in its 
limits all of the town of Bedford, was composed of about 150 
men. The field officers of the 9th Regiment, deeming it too 
large for the purpose for which it was intended, created a 
volunteer company by the name of the Bedford Grenadiers, 
numbering 48, rank and file. For military tactics, and strict 
discipline, it stood the highest in the 9th Regiment, and was 
considered one of the first companies in the State. It was 
organized before the close of the war of 1812. The uni- 
forms were of American manufacture. Coats were made of 
home-spun cloth, colored blue, trimmed with yellow silk 
braid and bright buttons. Pants were made of white cotton 
Jean or drilling, manufactured from No. 16 cotton yarn, and 
wove by the Misses Pattens, of this town. Vests of the same. 
Gaiters made from black velvet. Black wool hats, furnished 
with a brass front-piece, impressed with the American Eagle. 
The plumes were of white, with a red top made from geese 
feathers, by Mrs. Theodore Goffe of this town. 

In the year 1821, the company procured a new uniform, 
similar in style to the first one, but of a richer material, sub- 
stituting English manufacture for American. 

The company continued to hold its rank as one of the best 
companies of the State, until it was disbanded, in the year 

Its officers were the following. 

William P. Riddle, ap. 1st Capt. Dec. 20, 1815; pro. Maj. 
May 19, 1820; pro. Lieut. Col. June 23, 1S21; pro. Col. 
June 15, 1824; pro. Brig. Gen. June 24, 1S31 ; pro. Maj. 
Gen. June 25, 1833 ; res. June 8, 1835. 

Isaac McGaw, ap. Lieut. Dec. 20, 1815 ; res. Feb. 10, 1818. 

Wm. Patten, ap. Ens. Dec. 20, 1815 ; pro Lieut. Feb. 10, 
1818; pro. Capt. Aug. 28, 1820; res. April 9, 1821. 


Alfred Foster, ap. Ens. Feb. 10, 1819; pro. Lieut. Aug. 
28, 1820; pro. Capt. April 9, 1821; pro. Maj. June 18, 1825. 
Died in office. 

John Patten, ap. Ens. Aug. 28, 1820 ; pro. Lieut. April 9, 
1821; pro. Capt. Aug. 12, 1825; res. Dec. 19, 1827. 

Daniel Gordon, ap. Ens. April 9, 1821 ; pro. Lieut. Aug. 

12, 1825 ; pro. Capt. Dec. 22, 1827 ; res. Nov. 22, 1829. 
Rufus Merrill, ap. Ens. Aug. 12, 1825 ; pro. Lieut. Dec. 

22, 1827 ; pro. Capt. Dec. 2, 1829 ; res. April 16, 1832. 

John P. Houston, ap. Ens. Dec. 22. 1827 ; pro. Lieut. Dec. 
2, 1829 ; pro. Capt. April 18, 1832 ; 'res. April 16, 1833. 

James French, ap. Ens. Dec. 22, 1829 ; res. April 16, 

Samuel Patten, ap. Lieut. April 18, 1832 ; pro. Capt. April 
17, 1833 ; res. April 26, 1834. 

Samuel Morrison, ap. Ens. April 18, 1832 ; pro. Lieut. 
April 17, 1833 ; res. April 26, 1834 

R. McLaughlin, ap. Ens. April 17, 1833; res. July 22, 

In the year 1842, a volunteer company was formed, under 
the style of the Bedford Highlanders. Their uniforms con- 
sisted of coats made from green and Highland plaid, with a 
plaid scarf ; pants of white, trimmed with black velvet ; hats 
of black velvet, with black plumes. 

Its first officers were the following : 

Charles F. Shepard, ap. Capt. April 11, 1842; res. Oct. 

13, 1845. 

Joshua Vose, Jr., ap. Lieut. April 11, 1842; ap. Capt. Oct. 
13, 1845 ; res. April 20, 1847. 

Timothy F. Moore, ap. Ens. May 24, 1844 ; pro. Lieut. 
Oct. 13, 1845 ; pro. Capt. April 20, 1847 ; res. Dec. 9, 1847. 

Alfred McAffee, ap. Ens. Oct. 13, 1845 ; pro. Lieut. April 
20, 1847; pro. Capt. Dec. 9, 1847. (Disbanded.) 

William Moore, 2d, ap. Ens. April 20, 1847 ; pro. Lieut. 
Dec. 9, 1847. (Disbanded.) 

Wm. McDole Ferson, ap. Ens. Dec. 9, 1847. (Disbanded.) 

Field and Staff Officers. 

Silas Walker, ap. Surgeon, Sept. 17, 1824 ; res. Sept. 2, 1826. 
Robert Riddle, ap. Surgeon's Mate, Sept. 2, 1826. Died 
in office. 


H. C. Parker, ap. Paymaster, Aug. 25, 1S31 ; res. Sept. 6, 
1831; ap. Surgeon, Dec. 11, 1838; res. March 4, 1831. 

Isaac Riddle, ap. Adjutant, July 23, 1824; pro. Maj. June 
24, 1831 ; res. June 12, 1833. 

Lewis F. Harris, ap. Quartermaster, July 23, 1824 ; res. 
Oct. 22, 1828. 

A. J. Dow, ap. Adjutant, July 20, 1837 ; res. Aug. 14, 

Leonard Rundlett, ap. Quartermaster, July 20, 1837 ; pro. 
Brigade Inspector, Sept. 9, 1839 ; res. 1840. 

L. B. Bowman, ap. Paymaster, Aug. 16, 1838; pro. Adju- 
tant, Aug. 14, 1840 ; res. 1841. 

Geo. W. Riddle, ap. Quartermaster, Aug. 21, 1848 ; now 
in commission. 




" The Saugus Sachem had come to woo 

The Bashaba's daughter Weetamo. 

7r *P *p ?r *F -T7 *t* f 

From the Crystal Hills to the far south-east, 

The River Sagamores come to the feast. 

Bird of the air, and beast of the field, 
All which the woods and waters yield, 
On dishes of birch and hemlock piled, 

Garnished and graced that banquet wild. 


Pike and perch from the Suncook taken, 
Nuts from the trees of the Black Hills shaken, 
Cranberries picked in the Squamscot bog, 
And grapes from the vines of Piscataquog." 

[Bridal of Pennacook, Whittier. 

Piscataquog Village lies in the north-east part of the town 
of Bedford, and now comprises two school districts, Nos. 5 
and 14, and about 100 dwelling houses and 700 inhabitants. 
It was so called from the river of that name, which here 
empties into the Merrimac. The Piscataquog river rises in 
Francestown, near the Crotched Mountains, and after a 
meandering course in a south-east direction, having received 
the waters of Pleasant and Scoby's ponds in Francestown, 
and, passing through a corner of Lyndeborough and thence 
north-east through New Boston, it unites with its main 
branch, coming from Weare and Deering in Goffstown ; and 
thence, by a south-easterly course through Goffstown and a 
corner of Bedford, it flows into the Merrimac. It is quite a 
rapid river, and affords many valuable water privileges, 
some of which have been improved for saw and grist-mills, 
and other machinery. In the town of New Boston, on this 
stream and its branches, in 1820, there were more saw-mills 
than in any other town in the state. It was noted, in the 
primitive state of its forests, for its beautiful pine timber and 
excellent masts, hence the origin of the Mast-road and the 
Mast-landing, or rolling place, near the mouth of this river. 


These masts, it will be remembered, were mostly reserved, 
especially the best, for the king's special use in the royal 
navy; hence, the town officer found in our old records, under 
the King, " Deer-Keeper," whose duty was to prevent the 
unnecessary slaughter of deer, and preserve the King's timber 
from common use. 

The name of the Piscataquog is of Indian origin, and is said 
to signify, the place of many deer. When the town was first 
laid out and allotted to the proprietors, Lot No. 1 on Piscata- 
quog, containing 25 acres, now occupied by James Walker, 
was drawn to Gov. Belcher. No. 2, now belonging to the 
Amoskeag Land and Water Power Company, was drawn to 
James Davenport. Between these two lots and the range 
line at the head of the home lots extending west from nearly 
where the road now is, west and south of Piscataquog river, 
including the mill privilege and the most thickly settled part 
of the village, was Lot No. 123 of the third division, con- 
taining probably a hundred acres or more. The records do 
not state to whom it was drawn. Next, south of that, 
extending from the range line to the river, was lot No. 
73, drawn to " Maddam Livingston." Home-Lot No. 1, on 
the Merrimac river, south of the last named, was drawn to 
Jacob Griggs; No. 2, to John Plympton ; No. 3, to Habijah 
Savadge, Esq. : No. 4, to Thomas Simpkins ; No. 5, to 
Samuel Hollis ; No. 6, to James Yeats ; No. 7, to Israel 
Hubbard ; which will probably be the extent of the village, 
south. The island in the mouth of Piscataquog was drawn 
in the third division to Samuel Bass, as a meadow-lot, and 
hence probably called Bass Island. At a meeting of the 
proprietors of the township, in January, 1839, they voted to 
raise £20 for "rectifying the way from Souhegan river to 
Piscataquog river," and Robert Walker was appointed a 
committee to see the money expended. It seems the way 
was not " rectified," for in January, 1740, they voted to 
" chuse" a committee to mark out the highway between 
Souhegan and Piscataquog. At a meeting in June Of the 
same year, they voted to raise as much more, (viz.,) 3s. 4d., 
making altogether 6s. Sd. on each right in town for that end, 
and that Mr. Robert Walker do said work, and those who 
are delinquents to be proceeded against according to law. It 
is probable that this road was marked out and prepared for a 
cart-road, as far as Piscataquog river, at this time. The 
manner of crossing rivers, at this time, was by fording them. 


which was undoubtedly the case here, for in 1757 we find 
Thomas Hall petitioning for a road across Piscataquog. 
The town however, when the petition was laid before them, 
refused to lay out the road, and he (the said Hall) sued the 
town at the next quarter sessions, and obtained judgment 
against them for costs and damage, a part of which they 
voted to pay, and a part they voted not to pay ; but a settle- 
ment was obtained at last. The result seemed to be that 
they immediately set about building a bridge, which was 
accomplished in the years 1759 and 1760. This was the 
first bridge built across the Piscataquog at this place, and 
probably the first on this river. 

In 1756, the road generally designated as the mast-road T 
was known by that name. How long before it had received 
that appellation, no records appear ; but in 1756, a road was 
laid out from the mast-road, " beginning at the westerly end of 
the river range of home lots, (probably very near where the 
road by the Academy building crosses the range line above the 
McCoy house, so called,) and runs on the said lots till it comes 
where the line of said lots turns down the hill to the north- 
west of Lieut. Moor's house, (supposed to be a little north of 
James Harvell's house) and thence on the top of the hill to 
the west of the swamp, around the same, along between 
Robert Gilmore's house and barn, to the north-west corner of 
No. 7 home-lot on the river, from thence south on the heads 
or westerly ends of the river home-lots to the north-west 
corner of Samuel Patten's river home-lot, or No. 20, joining 
on said lot : said road to be four rods wide." 

In 1768, we find the following transcript of a road or 
highway laid out by Moses Barron and James Vose on the 
16th day of April. " Beginning at the line of Bedford and 
Goffstown where the mast-road that was last improved 
crosses said line, thence, as said mast-road was formerly 
improved to the hill next to the mast-rolling place on Piscat- 
aquog river, thence on the north side of a swampy place in 
said mast-road to the said rolling-place, thence down on the 
south side of said Piscataquog river to the mouth of said 
river, where it empties into the river " Merrymac ; " thence 
down said Merrymac about twenty-five rods, or so far as to 
take in the head of the eddy in the river next to the mouth 
of said Piscataquog : the whole way of said road to be four 
rods wide from the top of the upper bank. And also another 
piece of a highway, beginning at the highway at the west- 


erly end of the first range of house-lots, and at the north end 
of the road already laid out on the said end of said lots, from 
thence starting up the ridge until it comes to the old mast- 
road above laid out." 

In 1770, it became necessary to rebuild the bridge over 
Piscataquog river ; accordingly, in January of that year, it 
was voted to raise thirty pounds lawful money for that 
purpose, and that Major John Goffe be the man to build the 
bridge. The first mill, it appears, was built by Mr. David- 
son, which was swept away, and in 1775 rebuilt by John 

In 1779, it seems that Samuel Moor owned the mills on 
the Piscataquog where the mills now stand, How long 
before this they were built, is uncertain, and also by whom. 
At the same time, the ferry across the Merrimac, just above 
the rail-road bridge, was called Merril's Ferry, as appears by 
the following record of laying out a road. 

"June 21st, 1779. The town voted to lay out a road 
from John McKenney's, by Thomas Boies', James Stile's, 
&c, to Moor's Mill and Merril's Ferry." 

In 1781, the Piscataquog bridge became dangerous or 
unsafe for travel, and Major John Goffe, Samuel Vose, and 
James Wallace, were appointed a committee to examine and 
make what repairs were necessary, which they did, and the 
bridge was not again rebuilt until 1785, when the building 
of it was struck off at vendue, on the 24th of January, to 
Samuel Goffe. It appears that the bridge was required to be 
built anew about every ten or twelve years. It was last 
rebuilt in 1843. 

At this time, there were but three houses within the limits 
of the present village of Piscataquog, and one mill ; and here 
the historian may well pause and look around to find the 
elements of its subsequent prosperity as a business and com- 
mercial place. A vast amount of white and hard pine, and 
white oak suitable for ship-building, the facilities of rafting 
at the mouth of the river, and the increasing population in 
the surrounding country, crowned with the recent return 
of peace, permanently secured by the independence of our 
country, were the elements of its prosperity — but inactive 
and valueless, until acted on by a motive power. 

About this time, viz., in 1785, William Parker, in the 
language of his biographer, moved from Litchfield into Bed- 


ford, and built a small house near where the school-house in 
District No. 5. now stands, and worked at shoe-making. 
[See Biography.] To his energy, enterprise, and persever- 
ance, we are indebted for the foundation of this flourishing 
village ; yet, as we shall hereafter see, others, emulous to 
equal him in prosperity, as they were perhaps equal in 
enterprise, took up, in his declining years, and carried out 
the great plan of prosperity which he had begun. 

The manufacturing operations at Manchester, likewise, 
have had a great influence in building up the Village, especially 
that part on the north side of the Piscataquog river, which 
now comprises one half of the whole number of dwelling- 
houses, is the most compact, and bids fair to increase more 
rapidly than the other part. 

There are now in the village two stores, two taverns, one 
mill, carried by water power, for grinding meal and plaster 
and manufacturing lumber, and one steam-mill, two school- 
houses, and one Academy and meeting-house under the same 
roof. Its proximity to the growing city of Manchester, with 
which it is connected by the granite bridge, built in 1840 by 
an incorporated company, and made free by a vote of the 
town of Bedford and city of Manchester in 1848, renders it 
a desirable resort and pleasant retreat from the busy din of 
that city of spindles, and will afford some of the most 
pleasant country residences in the vicinity. The New 
Hampshire Central Railroad, intended to connect the Ver- 
mont Roads, by way of Claremont, Bradford and Henniker, 
with the Lawrence Road, passes through the heart of the 
village, and by a bridge across the Merrimac, connects at 
present with the Concord, affording hereby increased facilities 
for communication with all parts of the county. 

But let us return to our narrative. 

The business of the place continued to increase, and in 
1811 Wm, P. Riddle opened a store in the building opposite 
his present residence and, in company with William Parker, 
purchased the mills then owned by a Mr. Dow, and com- 
menced the lumber trade in good earnest, sending down a 
vast amount of wood and lumber every year. The following 
year, 1812, boating on the Merrimac river was first extended 
up to this place, which for a number of years was the head 
of navigation on the Merrimac. During this year, Isaac 
Riddle, then a successful merchant at the centre of the town, 


and Caleb Stark of Dumbarton, alike at that time friends of 
internal improvements, conceived the design, in connection 
with the recent improvement of the river by locks, and the 
Middlesex Canal, of navigating the river by boats. Accord- 
ingly they built a boat at Bedford centre, and drew it a 
distance of three miles and a half to the Merrimac river, with 
forty yoke of oxen, and there launched it amid the shouts of 
the multitude assembled to witness the novel scene, and 
named it the Experiment. 

It was loaded and navigated down the river, and through 
the Middlesex Canal, to Boston, where its arrival was hailed 
with cheers, the firing of cannon, and the following announce- 
ment in the Boston Centinel. 

"Arrived from Bedford, N. H., Canal-Boat Experiment, 
Isaac Riddle Captain, via Merrimac river and Middlesex 

This introduced a new era into the trade of the place, by 
increasing the facilities of transportation, and reduction of 
freight on heavy articles. Previous to the commencement of 
boating, freight was eighteen dollars per ton; but after 
boats began to run, it was at first reduced to ten, and 
afterwards to four dollars per ton. 

In 1816, finding his business so much increased, William 
P. Riddle built the large store and boating-house at Piscata- 
quog bridge ; and in order to facilitate his increasing boating 
business, in 1818 he built the locks at the mouth of Piscata- 
quog, and at one time it was seriously contemplated to unite 
the waters of the Merrimac and the Connecticut by a canal 
up the valley of the Piscataquog. William Parker, Isaac 
Riddle, and Isaac Riddle and sons, were the principal ones 
engaged in boating until the death of the former ; after 
which, up to the time when the railroad was built, boating 
was mostly carried on by Wm. P. Riddle. 

In 1817, the firm of Isaac Riddle & Sons was formed for 
mercantile, boating and manufacturing purposes, carrying on 
a very extensive business in various places, viz., Bedford 
centre, Piscataquog village, Souhegan village, Merrimac and 
Boston. The business of this firm in this place, amounted 
in some years to $30,000, supplying by way of boating and 
trade, in conjunction with the other stores, the towns of 
Goffstown, Weare, Dumbarton, Hopkinton, Warner, Sutton, 
New London, Fishersfield, now Newbury ; and probably more 


lumber has been boated and rafted from this landing, than 
upon all the rivers above Nashua. 

In 1820, the year after the toleration-act, so called, was 
passed by the Legislature, the inhabitants of the village took 
measures to erect a meeting-house, which they did by a 
joint-stock company, dividing the stock into shares, the 
principal part of which was owned by James Parker, Esq., 
and the heirs of the late William Parker. The building- 
committee were James Parker, Jonathan Palmer, and William 
P. Riddle, Esqs. The house was planned and the architec- 
ture designed by Thomas Kennedy of Goffstown, and to the 
present day is considered one of the most beautiful specimens 
of architecture in the country ; the building of the house was 
let by contract to Isaac Heath, of Hooksett. Preaching was 
obtained several months at a time, for a number of years, by 
subscription. The Rev. Mr. Long and Rev. Mr. Miltimore 
at different times supplied the pulpit very acceptably to their 
hearers ; at present it is frequently occupied for a third 
service, Sabbath-school and other religious exercises. 

During this year, the bridge across Piscataquog was rebuilt, 
under the superintendence of W. P. Riddle. 

The other traders in the place at different times have been, 
Thomas Parker. Riddle & Aiken, Charles Redfield, Ozias 
Silsbee, I. Riddle & Whittle, Wm. P. Riddle, Parker & 
Palmer, Kendrick & McGaw, Jonathan Palmer, James 
Walker, Abbot & Melvin, Aaron Gage, Kidder & Rundlett, 
Moor & French, Wm. French, French &, Barr, Wm. & J. 
N. French, F. G. Stark, James Walker, R. V. Greely, James 
Wilson, A. W. Dickey. 

In 1843, the meeting-house was purchased by an associa- 
tion of gentlemen, the upper part remodeled, and converted 
into convenient rooms for an Academy, which has very ably 
sustained itself without funds, under the instruction of Hiram 
Wason, who continued in it about a year ; and Benjamin F. 
Wallace, under whose instruction it has been, since March, 
1845, with the exception of about a year, while under the 
care of the Rev. Amos Abbott. A good apparatus has been 
furnished the Academy by the liberality of the ladies and 
gentlemen of the village. An act of incorporation was 
granted by the Legislature in 1848. The present board of 
directors (1850) consists of Hon. Frederick G. Stark, Esq., 
Jonas B. Bowman, Esq., Gen. William P. Riddle, and James 
Walker, Esq. 


This place has been probably the greatest depository of 
hops, for inspection, and boating, of any place in this State, 
— Gen. Riddle having inspected and forwarded to market, 
either by purchase or on freight, four or five hundred thousand 
pounds in a year. A great number of sleepers have also been 
furnished to various rail-roads in the country from this place, 
and even sleepers have been exported by some of the business 
men of this place to Cuba, in the West Indies. 

Next to Mr. Moor, a Mr. Dow owned the mills in this 
place ; they were afterwards owned by Thomas Parker, 
Buzzell & Wm. Parker, Wm. Parker & Isaac Riddle, until 
they were again carried off by a freshet. They were rebuilt 
by Kendall & Gage, and sold to David Hamblett, who carried 
on a large business in grain, meal, plaster, and manufacturing 
lumber, until his death, in 1848 ; and there is still a good 
amount of business done there. 






Col. John Goffe was a man of some consequence in his 
day. He was born in 1701, probably in Boston, and was the 
only son of John Goffe, Esq.,* who with his family came to 
Londonderry at an early period. The father was a man of 
property, as we learn by his will, a copy of which is still in 
existence. He died in 1748, and was buried in the old grave- 
yard, in Bedford. He bequeathed to his daughter Mary, 
£50, 10s., old tenor, and one cow. To his grandson Benja- 
min Litchfield, he gave one hundred acres of land in the 
township of Londonderry — "it being one hundred acres 
grant in the charter of said Londonderry." He also gave to 
his grandson, John Kidder, all his right, title, and interest to 
a fourth division in Londonderry. To a number of grand 
daughters he gave forty shillings each, and the remainder of 
his property he left to his son John, and his grand children, 
the heirs of his daughter Mary Woods. His son John was 
appointed executor. 

The subject of this brief memoir settled at the mouth of 
Cohos brook, the outlet of Massabessic pond, at the Merrimac 
river, about three miles below the city of Manchester, at 
what is called Moore's Village. His occupation in early life 
was hunting, which in the new state of the country was no 
doubt delightful and profitable. He is designated in some 
old deeds, as " Hunter John." This mode of life with 
which he was familiar from early years, and which at that 
time was common among the hardy youth of New-England, 
qualified him for the service in which he was afterwards 
engaged. It brought him in frequent contact with Indians, 
and gave him a knowledge of their language, manners and 
customs, besides making him an excellent marksman. In 

*The name of John Goffe appears on the records of Dr. Increase Mather's 
Church, Boston, as early as 1676. 


1746 he was Captain of a company of militia, and was sent 
to protect the frontier against the incursions of the Indians. 
While on this expedition he wrote the following letter to 
Gov. B. Wentworth — 

" 5 May, 1746. 

" May it please your Excellency : — I got to Pennycook 
on Saturday early in the morning, and notwithstanding I 
sent, the Monday after I left the Bank, yet my bread was not 
baked ; but there was about 250 lb. weight which supplied 
20 men, which I sent to Canterbury as soon as I got them — 
and I kept the Baker and several soldiers to baking all Sab- 
bath day, and proposed to march on Monday, as soon as pos- 
sible ; but about midnight, two men came down from Con- 
tookook and brought the unhappy news of two men being 
killed ; and the two men that came down told me that they 
saw the two men lie in their blood and one man more that was 
missing. And hearing I was here, desired me to assist in mak- 
ing search, so that I am with all expedition going up the 
Contoocook, and will do what I can to see the enemy. I 
shall take all possible care for the protection of the frontier 
and destruction of the enemy. The Indians are all about 
our frontiers. I think there was never more need of soldiers 
than now. It is enough to make one's blood cold in one's 
veins, to see our fellow creatures killed and taken upon every 
quarter ; and if we cannot catch them here, I hope the Gen- 
eral Court will give encouragement to go and give them the 
same play at home. The white man that is killed is one 
Thomas Cook, and the other is Mr. Stevens the minister's 
negro. These are found, and one Jones, a soldier, is not 
found. They have but few soldiers in the Fort ; have not 
as yet sought much for him. I am going with all possible 
expedition — and am 

Your Excellency's most humble and 

most dutiful subject and servant, 

John Goffe. 

Pennycook, about 2 o'clock in the morning, May 5, 1746." 

In 1757, according to the annals of Portsmouth, Col. Goffe 
joined the army at Albany, under Gen. Webb, Colonel of the 
regiment raised by New Hampshire, of which he was Lieut. 
Colonel. This was in the " Seven Year's War " so called, 
waged by the French and Indians on one side, and the Eng- 
lish and Continental troops on the other. In 1761 he was at 


Ticonderoga, as we learn from a letter written by him to his 
only son, Lieut. John Goffe. He was stationed at Fort Wm. 
Henry, which surrendered to the French ; eighty out of two 
hundred of the New Hampshire regiment were murdered by 
the Indians, as they marched out of the Fort, unarmed, after 
they had capitulated. Primus Chandler's father lost his life 
here. Thomas Campbell, William Caldwell, and Josiah 
Warren, of New Boston, barely escaped with their lives. 

He was appointed Colonel by Gov. Wentworth, and held 
his commission, as such, till the Revolutionary War. In the 
Register of New Hampshire, for 1768, we find him Colonel 
of the ninth regiment of militia. 

At the time of the American Revolution, Col. Goffe was 
too old to take an active part as a soldier, but the country 
was not deprived of the benefit of that long experience in 
arms which he had acquired. His only son, already men- 
tioned, an inhabitant of Bedford, was a soldier in the army, 
and held a Major's commission. 

The following is a letter from Col. Goffe, to his son Major 
Goffe : — 

" Portsmouth, Sept. 24, 1777. 

" Sir : — Col. Bellows goes off to-day to head as many vol- 
unteers as will push off to reinforce Gen. Gates. Our army 
are now in possession of Ticonderoga. In order to cut off 
Burgoyne's retreat, who was on the 17th of this month, 
within four miles of Stillwater, with his main body, as we 
are assured by Gen. Stark's letter of that date, pressing the 
State to exert every nerve, and to march at least half the 
militia of this State. And now is the time to cut off their 
whole army. And if we do but all go without hesitation, 
I verily believe it will put an end to the war. And if you 
could go yourself, for a fortnight or three weeks, I believe it 
would encourage many. 

Every man and officer will have pay, as the last militia 
had. But it must be done without loss of time. And if 
your brother-in-law, Samuel Moor, would be forward in this 
affair, it would be to his everlasting honor. Pray show your- 
selves friends to the country this once. 

I am your loving father, 

John Goffe. 
To Maj. John Goffe. 

Pray let Capt. Moor see this after you have read it." 



Col Goffe was not only a military officer, but for years a 
civil officer. He was called to perform such duties as the 

Record of a marriage by John Goffe, Esq. 

[Copy of the Certificate.] 

" Province of New Hampshire. 

" To either of the ordained ministers of the Gospel of said 
Province, or either of the Justices for said Province : — You 
are hereby empowered to join together in holy matrimony, 
James Martin and Sarah Parker, unless some legal impedi- 
ment appear to you to the contrary. 

"Given at Portsmouth, Jan. 12, 1761. 

B. Wentwobth." 

On the back of the certificate is the following. 

u Joined together in holy matrimony, the within-named 
John Martin and Sarah Parker. 

" April 6, 1761. John Goffe, J. of Peace." 

In 1771, the towns in New Hampshire were divided into 
five counties, and consequently a general reorganization of 
the courts took place. Col Goffe was appointed Judge of 
Probate for Hillsborough County, which office he retained 
till 1776, when a general change took place among the 
officers of the courts. This was probably the last office 
he held. He removed to Bedford sometime previous to 
the Revolution, and represented Bedford and Amherst in 
General Court. 

Col. Goffe was one of the most important men of this 
vicinity, often elected to offices of trust by his fellow 
citizens, and enjoying also the confidence of the Colonial 
Government. He was a religious man. While the country 
was new, and the towns around destitute of a stated ministry, 
he was accustomed to conduct divine service, on the Sabbath, 
in his own house. It is said, he sang and prayed, and read 
a selected discourse, to the edification of his audience. 
Some, who are now living, attended these meetings. Not 
only the people of Bedford, but of Goffstown, and probably 
Merrimac and Litchfield, resorted thither for public worship. 



Son of the preceding Col. John Goffe, on arriving at age, 
was set up in business in Bedford, by his father, who built 
the first saw-mill and grain-mill in the town on a small 
stream (Crosby's brook) about three miles below Manchester 
city, on the opposite side of the river. He was commissioned 
a Coroner by Gov. Benning Wentworth, in 1762. He also 
held a commission of Lieutenant in the 1st company, 9th 
regiment of militia, as early as 1761, and perhaps earlier. 
In 1764, Gov. Wentworth gave him a Captain's commission, 
and in 1768 he was promoted to the rank of Major. 

He served in the Revolution, as did several of his sons, 
two of whom lost their lives in that struggle. Stephen was 
lost at sea, and William was killed in an engagement. We 
have before us several letters of Stephen and William Goffe 
to their parents. Stephen's last is dated Boston, Sept. 4, 
1777, in which he says : " I am going out in a brig from 
Boston for a five months' cruise." We believe he was never 
afterwards heard from. The last letter received from Wil- 
liam, was to his brother John, dated " Fort Miller, (N. Y.) 
July 16th, 1777," in which he says, he writes to let him 
know that he had lost his captain in battle, two sergeants, 
and eight privates. " I do not expect to come home very 
soon, for we have battles almost every day." 

In the old grave-yard in Bedford, there rest, side by side, 
the mortal remains of John Goffe, Esq., Col. John Goffe, and 
Maj. John Goffe. At the right hand side of each, repose the 
ashes of their wives. 

" Goffstown," and " Goffe's Falls," so named for Col. 
Goffe, will hand down the name to posterity. 

Of " Goffe's Falls," now the name of a depot on the Bos- 
ton and Concord Railroad, there is a tradition or two among 
the old people in the neighborhood, which it may be well to 
relate, though for the authenticity we cannot be responsible. 

It is said that one Bushnell, a hunter and early settler at 
Cohos brook, was one day out hunting in the immediate 
vicinage of Goffe's Falls, near a projecting rock, from which 
he discovered pieces of pure lead hanging like icicles or 
stylactites. He took his hatchet from his belt and severed 
them from their hold, and placed them in his pouch. At 
that instant, a deer rose from its ambush near by, when he 


hastily fired at it, wounding but not killing it. The deer 
dashed into the river, and Bushnell after him, with all 
possible speed. 

Failing to secure his game, he returned to where he sup- 
posed he found the lead, but could discover no trace of it. 
He went home and told his story to Col. GofFe, who helped 
him run his lead into bullets. 

Ever afterwards he was unable to find the exact spot, 
although he spent much time in hunting for it. We cannot 
explain the mystery of the story, but tell it to others as it 
was told to us. 

Another incident is told of this Bushnell, in connexion 
with the early settlement at Goffe's Falls. 

He had acquired the ill-will of an Indian, who determined 
upon his destruction. Bushnell was a single man, and 
boarded out. His sleeping apartment was on the first floor of 
the house, of which the Indian was aware. One night Bush- 
nell was absent, and the lady of the house occupied the bed. 
In the night she was aroused from her slumber by a hand 
passing over her. She demanded, " Who is this ? " when an 
Indian replied, " Never fear ! Misssus, me no hurt you ! " 

It is supposed the incidental absence of Bushnell was all 
that saved his life. 


The following extracts from the auto-biography of this 
individual, will not be deemed, it is hoped, too lengthy, 
considering the interest with which they will be read in his 
native town. 

"I was born in Bedford, N. H., near the western bank of 
the Merrimac river, on the 6th day of August, 1766. My 
father's name was John Goffe, and my mother's maiden name 
was Jemima Holden, from Groton, Mass. They were mar- 
ried Sept. 17th, 1749, and settled in Bedford on a new farm, 
on which they lived and died in a good old age. My parents 
were respectable and pious people, — members of the Presby- 
terian Church, and of the good old Puritan stamp, who 
always maintained religious worship in the family, and 
brought up their family with a moral and religious strictness 


which is rarely to be found at the present day. They had a 
family of eleven children, seven sons and four daughters, of 
which I was the sixth son, and eighth child in succession ; 
and though their worldly circumstances were not affluent, 
but comfortable, they afforded their children all the oppor- 
tunity for learning, the state of the times and the newness 
of the country would then permit. 

" My father was a farmer by profession, but bore military 
commissions under George II. and III., and served in their 
wars with the Indians and French in Canada. He was 
usually called Major John Goffe, and was the only son of 
Col. John Goffe of Derryfield, (now Manchester,) N. H. My 
grandfather was a man of some eminence in his day as a 
military man, and commanded a regiment when Canada was 
surrendered to the British and Colonial arms. Besides his 
military commission, he held a variety of civil offices in the 
state, such as Judge of Probate, Justice of the Peace, — often 
a member of the state Legislature, and was an intimate 
friend of Gov. Wentworth and Col. Atkinson, and other 
public men of that day. But what is infinitely more for his 
honor, he was a man of distinguished piety, and did much 
for the promotion of religion in the new settlement around 
him. I can remember him well. He was rather above the 
middle stature, not corpulent, but of a commanding presence 
and aspect. His memory is perpetuated in the name of the 
large and respectable town of Goffstown, N. H., of which he 
was a large, and one of the original proprietors. 

" There is one thing further respecting our family which 
I would just mention as a matter of curiosity, if nothing 
more, and that is their longevity, so far back as I can remem- 
ber. My grandfather, when he died, was 87 years old, my 
grandmother, 96, my father, 85, my mother, 91, two aunts on 
my father's side, between 93 and 100, and I have now 
brothers and sisters living far advanced in life. 

" I was brought up on my father's farm, which was of 
considerable extent, where I worked on the farm, in the 
mills, and did considerable at lumbering and rafting on the 
Merrimac river, until I was more than 21 years of age. 
Thus early inured to labor and fatigue, I obtained a firmness 
and solidity of constitution, which but few of my brethren 
in the ministry, and especially at the present day, ever 
enjoyed. This enabled me to go through my studies with 
ease, and to labor in the ministry nearly double as much as 


was customary at that day. For nearly thirty years, I was 
very rarely absent from the pulpit on the Sabbath. 

" My advantages for an early education were very limited. 
I enjoyed no more than two or three months in a year in 
a common school, and that of a low character, kept chiefly 
by foreigners, in which nothing was taught but reading and 
spelling, writing and arithmetic, and I believe nothing more 
was known by the masters themselves. At that time, and 
in that place, it was generally thought that no native Ameri- 
can was capable of teaching a common English school. 
Suitable books of instruction were very few and scarce, and 
Grammar, Geography, and other studies now common in 
schools, were then rarely heard of. I had, however, such 
a thirst after knowledge, that I improved every opportunity 
and means to obtain it, and while my playmates, on a 
rainy day, and on other occasions, were spending their time 
in idleness and folly, I was poring over such books as I could 
obtain, and particularly mathematical books, of which I was 
fond. Thus, by what I obtained at school, and what I 
picked up by myself, by the time I was 17 or 18 years 
old, I was thought qualified to keep a common English 
school, and actually engaged in this business for two or 
three of the succeeding winters. I then began to think in 
earnest of obtaining, if possible, a college education, and set 
about acquiring the means to defray the expense. My 
parents, having then a large family to maintain, could do but 
little to assist me, but through their kind indulgence and 
help, and the blessing of God, I soon obtained means 
sufficient, as I thought, to justify a beginning. Accordingly, 
in Nov., 1787, being then a little more than 21 years old, 
and there being then no Academies or High-schools in the 
country, to which I could go to pursue thej necessary pre- 
paratory studies, I went to Windham, and put myself under 
the care and instruction of the Rev. Simeon Williams, the 
minister of that town, who was in the habit of taking 
students and preparing them to enter college. With him I 
studied the Latin and Greek languages, and such other 
things as were necessary, for about seventeen months, or 
until May, 1789, when, with his recommendation, I went to 
Dartmouth College, where I was examined by the proper 
authorities, and received, as in good standing, into the 
Sophomore class, on the 15th of that month. I then applied 
myself with satisfactory diligence to the several classics then 


in use, until the Commencement, August 21st, 1791, when 
I graduated A. B., with a class of nearly fifty students, the 
largest class that then had ever been in that college. Thus, 
in three years and about nine months after I commenced my 
preparatory studies, I was honored with my first degree at 
the age of 25. 

" The officers of the College while I was there, were 
John Wheelock, President : Bezaleel Woodward, Professor 
of Natural Philosophy and Mathematics ; John Smith, Pro- 
fessor of Languages, and Moses Fisk, Tutor. 

" It was my great object and aim, from the beginning, to 
qualify myself to become a preacher of the gospel. Of this 
I never lost sight, and of course, made all my studies 
subservient to it. To this great work I was strongly inclined, 
though I then had but faint conceptions of the arduousness 
of the labors, and the amazing responsibilities of the office 
at which I aspired. 

"Having progressed thus far as to pass through College, 
my next step was to apply myself to the study of the Bible, 
of which I had some knowledge, and of systematic theology, 
of which 1 knew nothing. At that day there were no public 
Divinity schools or Theological Institutions, as at present, to 
which students might resort to finish their preparations for 
the pulpit. The custom then was for young men to study 
with some noted Divine, who was in the habit of instructing 
candidates for the ministry in Systematic Divinity, Pastoral 
Theology, and the various duties of the sacred office. 
Accordingly, immediately after leaving College, I put myself 
under the guidance and instruction of the late Dr. Burton of 
Thetford, Vt., with whom I lived and studied about three 
mouths. He first taught me the great outlines of Divine 
truth in a connected and systematic order, and gave me such 
other instruction respecting the study of the Bible, and the 
work of the ministry, as has been of great advantage to me 
to the present day. The assistance I received from him was 
good and great, and I shall ever hold his name in grateful 

" The following winter I spent in teaching school, and in 
aiding a young man in his preparation for College. By the 
way, I was the first, and he the second, that had ever obtained 
a public education from our native town. Being desirous of 
continuing my studies, as preparatory to the ministry, and to 
obtain the best instruction time and circumstances would 


permit, in May, 1792, I went to New Haven, Ct., and put 
myself under the guidance and instruction of Dr. Jonathan 
Edwards, late President of Union College, Schenectady, N. 
Y., who was then a pastor of a church in that city. With 
him I studied about six months, and enjoyed his accurate 
and luminous instruction, when I measurably filled up his 
extensive system of Divinity, the outlines of which I had 
previously traced with Dr. Burton. These two eminent 
divines were the only earthly instructors in the doctrines 
and precepts of the gospel I ever enjoyed. With them I 
laid the foundation of all the knowledge of Divinity I ever 
possessed, and though their systems were different in some 
points, I never could. follow either of them in all particulars; 
yet, to both of them, I still feel under the greatest obligations. 
They taught me to read and think for myself, which I have 
ever done, and which has led me, in some non-essential 
points, to differ from them both. 

" Dr. E. Griffin, late President of Williams College, was 
my fellow student with Dr. Edwards. We boarded, studied, 
wrote, slept and recited together, and at last were examined 
together by the Association of the Western District of the 
County of New Haven, on the 30th day of Oct., 1792. 
Dr. Edwards, and the late Dr. Trumbull, the historian of 
Connecticut, were the prominent members of that Associa- 

" Having thus finished my preparatory studies, and obtained 
a license to preach the gospel, agreeably to the usages of 
Congregational Churches, I returned to my father's, in Bed- 
ford, where I tarried a few days. A peculiar train of minute 
circumstances and events had been in operation for years, 
the tendency and meaning of which I did not then under- 
stand, but which I afterwards learned were designed by the 
Supreme Ruler of the world to fix my location, and bring 
me to the scene of my future labors and connexions in life. 
The events which then transpired in close dependence on 
each other, experimentally taught me that God, in his Provi- 
dence, orders and governs the world, and that his hand and 
agency extend to the most minute concerns of men — that he 
fixes the bounds of our habitation, and that not a sparrow or 
a hair falls to the ground without him — a truth I have never 
lost sisht of to this day. Under this secret but controlling 
direction, I returned from my father's in N. H., to Oakham, 
in the County of Worcester, Mass., where I had kept a school 


the preceding winter, and there I delivered my first sermon 
in the pulpit, and in the presence of my old friend Rev. 
Daniel Tomlinson, on the 18th of Nov., 1792. My text 
was 1 Cor. i. 23, — " For we preach Christ crucified," — which 
was a kind of preface or motto to my whole subsequent 
ministry. It has been my great aim and endeavor to preach 
a crucified Saviour as the only hope of a sinful world ; and 
how well I have done it, the great and final day will declare. 

" While at Oakham, where I tarried a few days, I received 
an invitation to preach at Sutton, North Parish, (now Mill- 
bury,) where I preached my first sermon on the second day 
of December following ; and here has been the place of my 
ministerial labors, and of my residence, ever since ; and though 
invited to preach in several places, as a candidate for settle- 
ment, I could never consent ; and the church and people 
here, knowing the peculiar circumstances in Providence 
which first brought me here, were strongly desirous that I 
should continue and settle among them, and therefore would 
not consent that I should leave them. From all that had 
transpired, I was fully convinced that this was the place 
where I should live and labor for God. It seems that he had 
a great work for me to do, and I must stay and do it. 
Owing, however, to peculiar circumstances and the state of 
the times, and especially to an unhappy controversy between 
the church and parish on one part, and Rev. Eben. Chaplin, 
my immediate predecessor, on the other, they delayed giving 
me a formal call for settlement until Jan., 1794 ; and for the 
same reason, I delayed giving them an answer for several 
months after. The day for my ordination was appointed on 
the 10th of Sept., 1794. I was then solemnly set apart by 
a respectable Ecclesiastical Council to the work of the gospel 

" That was an important era of my life. It witnessed the 
attainment of the great object at which I had been aiming 
from the beginning, and now I had nothing before me but to 
go to work for God, and to fulfil the ministry I had received, 
which I have done with much weakness, imperfection and 
fear ; but, through the divine assistance and blessing, not 
without some desirable success/' 

The manuscript next goes on to give an account of his 
labors among his people ; his manner of preaching ; the 
revivals under his ministry, and his manner of conducting 
them ; his dismission, &c. He then says : — 


" Thus, after preaching to this people as a candidate and 
pastor for the space of thirty-eight years, and after witnessing 
seven distinct seasons of special revival, and after receiving 
nearly 400 members into the church, I was released from 
the stated labors of the ministry at the age of 64 years, and 
retired, under comfortable worldly circumstances, into the 
more private walks of life, consoled with the reflection that 
I left the church and parish in the highest state of increase, 
both in numbers and wealth, that I had ever known them. 
The church, when I was dismissed, contained 215 members, 
a large portion of them males. 

" After about a year's rest and retirement, my health was 
so far restored, that I thought I could and ought to do some- 
thing more in the vineyard of the Lord. Accordingly, I 
spent a part of the three succeeding years in my native state, 
New Hampshire, chiefly as a missionary and supply in the 
Counties of Hillsborough and Sullivan, where I trust I 
labored not altogether in vain. Several were hopefully con- 
verted, and added to the church, in the places where I 
exercised my ministry. I was in New Hampshire during 
the summers of 1S32 and '33, when what were called pro- 
tracted meetings were held in various towns and churches 
in that region, eight or ten of which I attended, and assisted 
in carrying them on." 

Remarks are here made upon protracted meetings, multi- 
plying meetings in times of revival, sudden conversions, and 
other things connected with his ministry. He then remarks : 

" One event of my life has afforded me no small satisfac- 
tion in the reflection, which is, that I was, as I believe, the 
first person who brought into public notice the great and 
glorious plan of instituting the present Board of Commission- 
ers of Foreign Missions. I was a member of the General 
Association of Massachusetts, which met at Bradford, I think 
in the year 1810, and was made Chairman of the Committee 
of Overtures. My old friend, the late venerable Dr. Spring 
of Newburyport, aided by the Professors at Andover, and 
several others, had formed and matured the grand design of 
instituting such a Board, with a view of the conversion of 
the world to Christ. The good Dr. Spring desired me to 
put some notice of this on my Minutes, which I did, and 
laid it before the Association as an article for their considera- 
tion and action. The Association adopted the plan, and 
proceeded to choose the first Board of Commissioners, in 
which I assisted by my voice and vote." 



He was born in Roxbury, and served several years in the 
Revolutionary War with his brother, Ebenezer, who was 
taken by the enemy and died in captivity. When he became 
prisoner, he gave John his watch, which is still owned and 
kept by John Holbrook, of Madison, Maine, and is a good 
time-keeper. John afterwards settled in what is now Brighton. 
He joined what was then the third Congregational Church, 
Cambridge, under Rev. John Foster, D. D., and was elected 
to the office of Deacon in that church. He once attended 
an ordination, as delegate from that church, in the western 
part of Massachusetts. On his way, he called on Rev. Dr. 
Abiel Holmes, of the first Church, who was to preach the 
sermon, and kindly offered to assist him on his way. The 
Doctor concluded to ride with Dr. Foster, but would be glad 
to have the Deacon take his baggage, and in putting it in, 
he repeatedly charged Dea. Holbrook, " Be sure you take care 
of the trunk, for it contains the cloak and the parchment." 

In 1803, Dea. H. removed to Bedford, and in 1804, was 
added to the session of this church. In 1832, he was chosen 
one of the electors of President and Vice President of the 
United States. His death occurred suddenly, Sabbath Dec. 
12, 1835. Having attended meeting, and listened to the 
exercises of the day with great attention, and even found the 
last hymn, he died, just after leaving the house of God, in 
his sleigh, with his wife ; being a most solemn providence, 
and loud call to the congregation. The text selected at his 
funeral, was Hebrews, xi., 21, — " By faith, Jacob, when he 
was a dying, worshipped, leaning on the top of his staff." 


At the age of five years, he lost both his parents, within a 
week of each other. The family were kept together one year 
under the care of Annis, then nineteen. They were then 
put out to different families, under the direction of their 
guardian, Dea. Robert Walker. John he took into his own 
family till he was fourteen. The Deacon adhered to the 
good old system of family discipline, and from him, John, (as 


he used to say himself, in advanced age,) received just the 
training he needed. " There was in me," said he, " by- 
nature, a reckless daring, an obstinacy and self-will, which 
would not have borne the least indulgence." Several anec- 
dotes, related by the companions of his childhood, show the 
seeds of that integrity, reflection, and sound judgment, which 
in after life, distinguished him in the halls of legislation, 
mingled with that firmness, perseverance, and dauntless 
bravery, which placed him in the front rank of volunteers, on 
the field of Bennington. 

After leaving the service of Dea. Walker, he spent a few 
years as a hired laborer, with friends in Londonderry and 
Bedford. About the age of nineteen, he went with some 
other young men, into the State of Maine, and engaged in 
the business of a carpenter. There he considered himself in 
after life, to have been in imminent danger. " The workmen 
in this business," said he, " were accustomed to receive from 
their employers, a portion of ardent spirits at certain hours of 
the day. At first, I took it only to avoid singularity ; but I 
soon found my appetite increased, and would catch myself 
looking up at the sun, to see if eleven o'clock was drawing 
near. I was convinced that I was in danger of becoming a 
drunkard. I had not the wisdom or courage to break off 
altogether, but I determined I would have no set time for my 
drams. If I had not taken this resolution, no doubt I should 
have filled a drunkard's grave before this time." 

About the age of twenty-one, he returned to Bedford, and 
in company with his brother Hugh, commenced the cultiva- 
tion of the farm left them by their father; being the same 
now owned and occupied by Samuel Patten. At the age of 
twenty-three, he bought out his brother's share of the farm, 
married Jane, daughter of Benjamin and Catherine Smith, 
built a saw and grist-mill, and engaged with great ardor in 
the business of improving his farm. But his business was 
soon interrupted by the commencement of the Revolutionary 
struggle. He took a very warm and decided stand in support 
of the liberties of his country. 

He joined a company of volunteers, who in the year 1777, 
under the command of Gen. Stark, marched to oppose the 
further progress of Burgoyne's army, then stationed at Still- 
water. He received a Lieutenant's commission under Capt. 
McConnell, in Col. Stickney's regiment, and left with his 
company for Bennington. The following sketch was drawn 


up by himself, at the request of his son Isaac, giving a des- 
cription of the commencement of the battle at Bennington, 
and his sufferings after being wounded in the knee, which 
made him a cripple, and left a running sore, for life. 

" On the 16th August, 1777, I was called to engage a 
detachment of the British, which had been sent out from 
Stillwater, for the purpose of securing the military stores 
deposited at Bennington. They had been checked in their 
march on the 14th, about six miles from Bennington, by the 
appearance of Stark's Brigade, where they cast up two breast- 
works, nearly half a mile apart. On the morning of the 16th, 
Col. Nichols, with a detachment of the volunteers, was ordered 
by a circuitous route, to attack the main breastwork, as soon 
as another detachment should attack in the rear. I was in a 
detachment of 200, to attack the minor breastwork, as soon 
as we should hear Nichols' guns. We marched from the 
main body, about half a mile, and then arranged ourselves in 
front of the breast-work about fifty or sixty rods distant, with 
trees and corn intervening, which prevented our seeing each 

"About 4 o'clock, P. M., Nichols began, and the cracking 
of muskets was such, that imagination could see men falling 
by dozens. We arose and with shouts marched rapidly to 
the attack. In the meantime, I remembered the fate of Col. 
Hale, who, about two months before, was overtaken in his 
retreat from Ticonderoga, by the enemy, skulked in the 
beginning of the action, lost his standard, and was degraded. 
Resolving that no one should have cause to impeach me with 
cowardice, I inarched on with the appearance of a brave 
soldier. When we had passed through the wood and corn- 
field, we came in sight of the enemy, at about fifteen rods 
distance. They commenced firing with muskets, at an 
alarming rate, so that it seemed wonderful that any of the 
attacking party should escape. At that time, an expression 
of the Prince of Orange came into my mind, ' every bullet 
has its billet,' and I soon found one commissioned to lay me 
low. After having lain fifteen or twenty minutes, one of our 
sergeants came and offered to take me off the ground, I told him 
he was unable, for I could not help myself. He said he would 
not leave me there, for the enemy might come and kill me. 
He therefore called a soldier to his assistance. They took 
hold of me by my arms, and attempted to carry me off; but 


the balls flew directly at us, so that I charged them to lay me 
down instantly, each take a hand, and stoop so low, that the 
flax would conceal them, and drag me on my back, into the 
cornfield, where 1 should be out of sight of the enemy. This 
order they obeyed, and took me to the road, where many 
of the wounded were collected. I was then carried to the 
General's quarters, where I lodged that night without rest. 

" In the morning, Robert Smith came and asked a German 
surgeon to examine and dress my wound. He complied, and 
put a bandage on it ; but took no pains to reduce the fractured 
bones. Smith took him aside, and asked him what he 
thought of my case. He said ' it would have been as well if 
my head had been cut off, for I must die.' This opinion was 
not told me, until I recovered. For more than a month, I 
lay under the care of our regimental doctor, suffering pains 
which I need not attempt to describe, continually losing flesh 
and strength. It was the opinion of some that I could not 
recover, but I had a considerable flow of spirits, and was 
sometimes merry, so that some of my attendants thought I 
was deranged. 

" After the departure of the Brigade, I employed a private 
surgeon, who had more skill, to attend me, and sometime in 
November, I began to feel better, and my stomach regained 
its proper tone for food, but the Doctor appointed my diet of 
light food ; this became disagreeable, for I hankered especially 
for hearty meat. One day I longed for pork and beans, and 
the desire increased and continued till evening. I did what 
I could by reasoning, to suppress this appetite, but in vain, 
and I considered myself in a situation similar to that of the 
Israelites in the wilderness, when their soul loathed the light 
food. And I feared that God had given me up to my heart's 
lust, to wander in councils of my own ; but in the evening 
I found relief, without any visible cause, which made me 
inexpressibly happy. February 4th, 1778, I set out on a bed 
in a sleigh, and arrived on the 14th, at my house, in health. 
I was unable to step without crutches till October following. 
During all this time of pain and weakness, I felt no great 
anxiety about the things of time, but as soon as I was able 
to walk without crutches, I returned to my habits of industry, 
and by the blessing of God on my endeavors, I have obtained 
a competence of the good things of time, and enjoyed as 
much happiness as generally falls to the lot of humanity in 


this world of changes. May the giver of all good inspire me 
with gratitude and prepare me for a better world ; for the 
time of my departure is at hand. John Orr." 

Mr. Orr was an honor to his native town. After having 
filled various important offices in the town and state, he 
departed this life, in January, 1823, aged seventy-five, full of 
years and honors. His memory is held in great veneration. 
The following inscription appears on his gravestone in the old 
graveyard. "As an officer of the church, distinguished for a 
discriminating judgment, uncommon decision, candor and 
meekness. He lived and died in an unshaken, practical ad- 
herance to the faith once delivered to the Saints." His influ- 
ence was always on the side of virtue and religion ; he was 
active in every good enterprise ; his voice was often heard 
in the religious conference, and many now living, remember 
well the interest he gave to these occasions. In the language 
of one who knew him well, " He was one of nature's nobil- 
ity," and to him may be applied the following from the 
great poet : — 

" He was a noble gentleman ; 
The general voice 

Sounds him for courtesy, behaviour, truth, 
And every fair demeanour, an example. 
Titles of honor add not to his fame, 
Who was himself an honor to the title." 


Son of Hon. John Orr. The following sketch is from the 
pen of Jacob McGaw, Esq., Bangor. 

Mr. Orr was bora at Bedford, Dec. 1st, 1772, and in his 
boyhood, expressed a desire for a public education. To have 
gratified this wish, would have been very pleasing to his 
father, but as he had seven other sons, and as his property 
was not large enough to do equally well for all of them, he 
deemed it unjust to allow Benjamin the boon he had 
requested. Instead of pursuing the course to which his 
inclination and judgment both pointed, he was apprenticed to 
a housewright. He served his master with fidelity some two 
or three years, but circumstances occurred at that time, which 


induced Mr. Orr to endeavor to be released from his appren- 
ticeship. A bargain was concluded by which Mr. Orr stipu- 
lated to pay his master a sum of money, so soon as he could 
earn it, instead of his unfinished term. The payment was 
honorably made, from the proceeds of his labors in the art to 
which he had been apprenticed. 

Mr. Orr's thirst for a thorough literary education was so 
intense, as to produce the resolution that nothing short of 
providential interposition should prevent him from obtaining 
it. Animated by the hope of final success, he labored with 
such diligence and skill, that he was not only able to pay the 
money due to his former master, but also to commence a 
course of study, preparatory to a collegiate course. His 
studies, his mechanical labors, and school-teaching, were 
made subservient to this ultimate object, and allowed him no 
time for recreation. His pleasures consisted in anticipation 
of the future. After Mr. Orr became his own master, he first 
labored in the upper part of New Hampshire. There he 
became an occasional scholar, under Mr. Paul Langdon, an 
eminent teacher, who was preceptor of an academy at Frye- 
burg, Maine. It was poverty, alone, that made him an occa- 
sional scholar. But even the suspension of his studies, did 
not cause him to swerve from the one grand object that was 
always in his view, viz., eminence. It is said that some of 
the grandest specimens of architectural beauty existing in 
Maine, were produced, in part, at least, by his labor at that 

Thus he labored and studied, enjoying the respect of all 
who knew him, and the admiring friendship of the few with 
whom at that early period of his life, he was intimate. The 
strength of attachment and respect of a few, who like him 
were poor and struggling for knowledge, was surprisingly 
great, and never ceased or abated, but with their earthly 

In August, 1796, he had fitted himself, with such aid as 
his other avocations permitted him to receive from his able 
preceptor, Mr. Langdon, to be admitted to two years advanced 
standing in Dartmouth College He struggled through his first 
year in College, depending on his own resources, entirely. 
Near the close of this year, disease, induced perhaps from too 
severe application of all his powers to study, seized upon him, 
with such intensity as to give, for a time, but little hope of 
his recovery. In this extremity, when death was expected to 


do its work very soon upon the sick man, the Hon. John Orr. 
father of Benjamin, was notified of his son's condition. All 
the tender feelings of a fond father were instantly aroused, 
and with his utmost speed, the father hastened, once more to 
see, if possible, his first-born child, and to give his parting 
blessing. But Infinite Wisdom and Benevolence had impor- 
tant labor for the suffering scholar yet to perform, and therefore 
he lived. So soon as the feeble but returning health of the 
son would permit, he returned, after an absence of nearly ten 
years, to his father's house, there to enjoy the fulness of his 
father's love, and all the fondness and kind attentions of his 
brothers and sisters. Here the affectionate care of darling 
sisters ministered to his convalescence, and his health was 
restored after months of confinement, so as to enable him to 
return to College. 

At this time a new era commenced with fewer obstacles 
to be overcome, than had heretofore obstructed the attainment 
of his darling object. His father saw with what indomitable 
eagerness he had pressed onward in pursuit of education, and 
that providential interpositions had at length arrested his pro- 
gress, when he had arrived in full view of the goal. Parental 
feelings could not permit the cup of happiness and of honor 
to be dashed from the lips of his son, at the moment when 
its attainment seemed to be certain, after such long and painful 
struggles had been exerted and endured. The means of 
making such loans as would enable Mr. Orr to complete his 
collegiate course, were in his father's power, were offered, 
and gratefully accepted. In August, 1798, he received the 
degree of A. B., and quitted college with honorable standing 
as a scholar, notwithstanding the very numerous and great 
hindrances that were constantly occurring. 

Mr. Orr, immediately after commencement, entered the 
office of the late Gov. Samuel Dinsmore, as a student at law, 
and pursued his studies under the direction of Gov. Dinsmore, 
from one to two years. He then entertained the belief that 
Maine, at that time a province of Massachusetts, presented 
higher attractions to the ambition of a young lawyer, than 
New Hampshire did. He proceeded to Hallowell, in Maine, 
and there placed himself under the tuition of the Hon, Sam- 
uel S. Wilde, then an eminent counsellor-at-law, but now a 
venerable and learned Judge of the Supreme Judicial Court, in 
Massachusetts. In the Summer or Autumn of 1801, Mr. Orr 
was admitted to practice law in the Court of Common Pleas, 


and in 1804 or 1805, was admitted to practice in the Supreme 
Judicial Court. His residence was principally in Brunswick, 
but during a few years, in Topsham. These towns are only 
separated by Androscoggin River, but lie in different coun- 
ties, Cumberland and Lincoln. 

Mr. Orr's location presented to him the opportunity of prac- 
tising his profession in both the counties before mentioned. 
In each of these counties, at that time, were lawyers holding 
very eminent standing in their profession. Among them 
were the late Chief Justice Parker, of Massachusetts, and the 
late Chief Justice Mellen, of Maine. Such men as Mr. Orr 
soon proved himself to be, could not long be in practice at 
the same courts with these gentlemen, without opportunity 
of hazarding a trial of his inexperienced strength with them 
or some of them. His clients never repined that their coun- 
sellor and advocate was of fewer years at the bar, than the 
counsellors of their adversaries. Within a short period after 
Mr. Orr's admission to practice in the Supreme Judicial Court, 
he stood in the first class of lawyers in both counties. 

When Maine became one of the United States, in 1820, 
Mr. Orr's eminent standing had become so generally known, 
that he was called to go into every county in the state, to 
advocate one side of the most important cases to be heard in 
the S. J. Court. From this period, until the time of his 
death, in 1828, he followed the circuit of the S. J. Court 
through the State, as regularly as did the Judges themselves. 
No man in the State pretended to hold rank above Mr. Orr ; 
few, if any, thought themselves his equal. 

Chancery powers were very late in being introduced into 
the State Courts, although United States Courts were early 
clothed with equity powers. When a circuit of the United 
States Court was first holden in this young State, a bill in 
equity of great importance was filed in that Court, and Mr. 
Orr was called to oppose the Hon. Jeremiah Mason, who was 
brought from his native State, New Hampshire, and who had 
long stood " Higher than any of the people, from his shoul- 
ders and upward." His success was complete and triumphant. 
In this department of law, he was without a rival in the 
State. On this occasion, he was highly complimented by 
Mr. Mason, in presence of a number of persons, at his own 
house, in Portsmouth. Mr. Orr's powers were principally 
devoted to the profession which he so much adorned. But 
when he could render good service in promoting the cause of 


science or virtue, he readily yielded himself to the advance- 
ment of those objects. Therefore, when called to serve, first 
as an overseer, next as a trustee, and finally as Treasurer of 
Bowdoin College, he cheerfully devoted himself to the per- 
formance of very important duties and services connected 
with the several offices thus devolved upon him during 
twenty of the last years of his life. His good name and val- 
uable services are still cherished and kindly remembered by 
the old and tried friends of that institution. 

About the year 1813, conflicts existed relative to lands in 
Maine, of immense interest and value, between proprietors 
whose patents overlapped each other, and including many 
hundred settlers and their farms. Men who had settled and 
paid for their lands to one set of proprietors, were repeatedly 
sued by other proprietors, and in many instances driven from 
their farms and homes, and all that they held dear, without 
having any means of adequate redress. Tumultuous and riot- 
ous proceedings ensued. Legislative aid was invoked, and 
finally, by general consent, Mr. Orr, and Hon. Judge Bailey 
were selected to adjust the adverse claims, and, by general 
rules, to settle troubles that nearly produced an intestine 
insurrection. The whole matters were happily and satisfac- 
torily closed. 

Mr. Orr's political opinions were in harmony with those of 
Washington, and the men who formed, and administered for 
the first twelve years, the institutions of the United States. In 
other words he was a Federalist of the old school. In 1816, 
he yielded to the importunity of his friends, and suffered 
himself to be a candidate for Representative to Congress, to 
which office he was elected, and served through one Congress 
with ability. But political life interfered with his professional 
pursuits, and after the brief period of two years, was wholly 

A single remark may be made, in regard to Mr. Orr's 
domestic life. His wife was a lady of fine manners and well 
fitted to preside in a family where hospitality and generous 
friendship were extended to the utmost limit, towards every 
individual who became a guest in their house. 



This gentleman, distinguished for his literary and scientific 
attainments, and for his numerous philosophical letters and 
essays, was half-brother of Hon. Benj. Orr, by a second 
marriage, and grandson of Rev. John Houston. He became 
early impressed with the importance of religion, and united 
with the church, in this town, in his seventeenth year. He had 
been learning a trade, but soon turned his attentions to study, 
with the view of preparing for the ministry. His College 
life gave promises of future usefulness. Rev. R. R. Gurley, 
of Washington city, one of his classmates, says : — " He was 
my earliest, most respected, and most faithful collegiate 
friend. We occupied the same room for a long time, and a 
gentleman of higher and more original talent, more sterling 
integrity, more truthfulness and disinterestedness of character, 
is seldom ever seen. In all branches he was a good, and in 
mathematical and philosophical learning, a profound scholar. 
He had in these latter branches no superior and few equals 
in College." We copy this from a sermon on his death by 
Rev. A. R. Baker, Medford, Mass., from which we take the 
following extract : — " His instructor, Prof. Emerson, of Ando- 
ver Theological Seminary, says, — < I always felt sure that a 
difficult problem, which had passed unsolved from one to 
another of his fellow students in the recitation-room, would 
be stopped by him, for he was always prepared.' " 

After leaving College, he became associate instructor in the 
Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb in Hartford, Conn., where 
he remained till 1824, when he resigned his office, and took 
charge of a similar institution in Canajaharie, N. Y. There 
he married Miss Mary Morris, an amiable lady, and soon 
returned to Bedford, N. H., where he pursued and completed 
his preparations for the ministry, and was licensed by the 
Presbytery of Londonderry in 1827. It was during this 
brief residence in his native town, that the pastor of the 
church first became aquainted with Mr. Orr, and was deeply 
impressed with his high intellectual and moral worth. 
During this period he preached occasionally, but no where 
for any length of time, except Tyngsborough, Mass., and 
Amherst, N. H., in the former of which places he also 
instructed in the Academy ; but his impaired health did not 
allow him to assume a pastoral charge. 


His wife died soon after the birth of her youngest child, 
and about this time he accepted the office of City Missionary 
in Washington, D. C. His second wife was Matilda, daughter 
of Dr. Samuel Kidder, of Medford, Mass. It was while 
engaged at Washington, that he became deeply interested in 
the African race, and was appointed Agent of the American 
Colonization Society, and afterwards Secretary of the African 
Education Society, and Editor of its public journal. 

Subsequently, he was employed as a reporter of the U. S. 
Senate for the National Intelligencer, and in this capacity 
wrote those letters in the New York Commercial Advertiser, 
under the signature of " Hampden," and those in the Boston 
Courier, under the signature of "Timoleon," which were 
widely circulated, and are still resorted to, as political docu- 
ments of great permanent value. Prostrated by a disease 
which, it was believed, too severe application to study pro- 
duced, and which had been undermining his constitution for 
many years, he returned in the spring of 1842 to New Eng- 
land ; resided a year in Medford, and then went to Amherst, 
Mass., where his disease, which was consumption, gathered 
strength, and terminated his life on the 28th of April, 1844, 
in the 51st year of his age. 

Mr. Orr was a man of extraordinary powers of mind. His 
mental constitution was wonderfully adapted to the most 
abstruse subjects in philosophy and mathematics. The com- 
piler of this brief sketch well remembers his last visit at 

He was most interesting and affectionate to all his friends, 
and at the same time, with those who could enter into his 
thoughts, he poured forth the most profound and lofty specu- 
lations. During that visit, his favorite topic was the theory 
of creation. He believed that God had always been actively 
benevolent, that there had been no period in the infinity of 
duration, but what there had been some objects on which to 
spend his beneficence ; hence, he carried the existence of 
matter back to an indefinite period in external ages, and 
without making it coexistent with God, gave to it a sort of 
indefinite past duration. 

Mr. Orr's correspondence was with some of the most gifted 
minds in the country, as Prof. Fisher, previous to his 
lamented death, Dr. Bowditch and others, to whom he com- 
municated his views respecting the formation of the universe. 

His publications were numerous, and were given to the 


public principally through journals and newspapers of the day. 
In the Washington Mirror of 1S35-6, he published twelve arti- 
cles on various mathematical and philosophical subjects, signed 
"O;" also, in the same periodical, "Strictures on Dr. New- 
man's Theory of Gravitation." In the Boston Courier, and 
U. S. Telegraph of 1836, he published a number of philo- 
sophical questions and essays ; ten essays on infinites and 
other mathematical and philosophical subjects, signed " O," 
in the Boston Courier in 1839 ; and several articles in Prof. 
Silliman's Journal of Science and Art. 

Mr. Orr, amid these profound speculations, was not defi- 
cient in poetry, as his Ennui, published in New Haven, in 
1818, his Christmas Eve, in Hartford, 1S20, Farewell to 
Georgetown, in the American Spectator, 1830, and the Stu- 
dent's Family, in the U. S. Telegraph, 1833, abundantly 

With other subjects, he was also conversant. He left a 
MSS. Commentary on the Prophecy of Daniel, another on 
the book of Revelation, also, a Political manual, incomplete. 

The enquiry may be made, Was Mr. Orr's knowledge 
entirely theoretical, or did he reduce it to practice ? In reply, 
it may be said, that the application of the air-tight principle 
to the common stove originated with him, and to him we are 
indebted in part for all the subsequent improvements in 
warming our houses and economy in the consumption of 

But more than all, Mr. Orr was a religious man. His life 
was pure, and his aims were elevated. His departure- from 
life was most triumphant. " He had lain in great weakness 
and distress many days," to quote the sermon already alluded 
to, " and when he was dying said, ' Come Lord Jesus, come 
quickly. Glory, glory to his sovereign grace, in that I will 
rejoice — O, I will rejoice — it is my only hope — it is the 
hope of the world. God is merciful ; he is good. O, salva- 
tion is all of grace, free grace. All the days of my appointed 
time will I wait, till my change come, but I hope, if it be 
God's will, I may go to-day — on God's holy Sabbath. I 
know not how I could employ myself among fallen spirits, 
for I could not help singing Glory to God. I want to be 
with Christ. I want to see his glory. Glory, glory to God 
in the highest.' " 

Some of his last words were addressed to his wife, who 


gave expression to the sentiment in some verses, of which 
the following is the first. 

" keep me not, dearest, keep me not here, 
Visions of glory are circling me near, 
Angels are watching and waiting for me, 
My spirit is struggling, and longs to be free. 
My home, 0, 't is pleasant — I soon shall be there, 
All pure and all holy — untortured by sorrow, by sin, or by care." 

The impression has formerly been, that men of philo- 
sophical and mathematical genius are not generally Christians. 
But is this true ? Newton was a Christian. Locke was a 
Christian ; and so was our own Bowditch. His dying scene 
was beautiful. " On the morning of his death," says his 
pastor, " when his sight was very dim, and his voice almost 
gone, he called his children around his bedside, and arranging 
them in the order of age, pointed to and addressed each by 
name, and said, ' You see I can distinguish you all, and I 
now give you my parting blessing. The time is come. 
Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, according 
to thy word.' These were his last words. After this, he 
was heard to whisper, in a scarcely audible tone, the words 
'pretty, pleasant, beautiful.' But it cannot be known 
whether he was thinking of his own situation as pleasant, in 
being thus surrounded at such a time by those he loved, or 
whether he had caught a joyful glimpse of the spiritual 


This gentleman, a native of Litchfield, [See Genealogy,] 
moved to this town in 1785. He had been in the Revolution- 
ary service, and was stationed one winter in Charlestown, on 
Winter-Hill. He built a small house, which stood near the 
school-house No. 5 ; worked first at shoe-making, and there 
his oldest son and second child was born. While engaged 
there, he used to walk out about twilight at evening, and 
seat himself on the side-hill, near the present mansion-house, 
and there he would contemplate the future prospect. It was 
then all woods, there being only one house at the Mills, and 
one where Dea. McQ,uesten lives, and another, east of James 
Harvel's, on the interval. While sitting there, he had a view 


of the travel from Concord to Boston, and also down the 
Mast-road, turning off each way to Concord and Boston. 
Some little lumber lay on the Landing, on a little spot cleared 
off to roll in masts. Here it occurred to him that some day, 
ere long, it would become a place of business. The land 
was owned by old Mr. Samuel Moor. He thought, if he was 
able, he would purchase an acre, so as to command the four 
corners where he built his tavern-house, where his stable 
stood, where his store stood, and where his house now stands. 
Accordingly, he applied to Moor, to know what he would 
take for an acre of land, and let him select it any where 
he chose. Mr. Moor would sell on this condition, one acre 
for $100 and a pair of calf-skin boots. Parker wanted the 
land, but he was poor, and did not know how to raise the 
money. He went to one Amos Martin, and offered him one 
half in common, if he would take hold and help him buy 
the acre. Martin at first agreed to do so, but on reflection, 
thought the land too high, and backed out. Not so with 
Parker. He persevered, closed the bargain, took his deed, 
and paid promptly, according to his agreement. He moved 
the little house he had built near the school-house, to the 
spot where the tavern now stands, added a little to it, and 
resumed the business of shoe-making, which he now united 
with a little store of spirits and tobacco. 

As his business increased, he took an apprentice ; laid up 
money : was soon able to purchase, in his way, about 6 or 
8000 of boards, at $4 per 1000 ; rafted and sent them to 
Newburyport ; sold for $8 ; made a handsome profit ; laid 
out the money in the purchase of more boards, which he 
sent off with equal success. And here was the starting point 
in his lumber trade, that brought him so much property. In 
this way he added to his acres, and added to his trade, and a 
very few years found him in possession of a store of goods. 

He soon became popular, as an honest trader, and this 
multiplied his customers. All this time his tavern was open 
to travellers, and being in a central place, he had as much 
company as he could accommodate ; and money was coming 
in from all quarters. 

He always paid punctually ; and in this way he raised his 
credit in Boston, so that he could get trusted for any quan- 
tity of goods. "I have known/' says his son-in-law, "his 
creditors, when settling up his bill where he purchased his 
West India goods, to hand him at the close $50," — no 
doubt in order to retain his custom. 


In 1796 or 1797 he built his large tavern-house, and added 
to his store, — his business all the time increasing. He 
established his brother-in-law, Wm. Parker, in trade in 
West Goffstown — he was known as " Farmer Bill." That 
being a good place to get lumber in exchange for goods, 
they soon became wealthy. 


We are already so well acquainted with this early settler, 
by the frequent allusions to him, and frequent extracts from 
his Journal, that no more than a brief notice here is neces- 
sary ; indeed, for the first fifty years, his history is a part of 
the history of the town. 

He was born in Ireland, May 19, 1719 ; emigrated to this 
country in 1728 ; came to Souhegan East in 1738 ; was 
second Judge of Probate in this county, and first after the 
Revolution ; he was appointed to that office in 1776 ; he 
represented the towns of Bedford and Merrimac in 1776 and 
1777 ; was Counsellor in 1778. He was appointed Justice 
of Peace about 1751, and continued in that office until his 
death, which occurred Aug. 27, 1795. He died in a field in 
the south part of the town. The men were mowing, and he 
went to carry them their dinner. He went and sat down 
under a tree, where he was found dead in a short time. 


Son of Hon. Matthew Patten, was, for many years, a 
useful and esteemed citizen. The following tribute to his 
worth is extracted from the town records. 

" David Patten, Esq., son of Hon. Matthew Patten, was 
born in this town, Feb. 18, 1761. He was very useful for 
many years as a land-surveyor, and was always ready to give 
accurate information respecting boundary lines j and such 
was the confidence reposed in him, that his opinion settled 
the question. He was also in some part of his life a respect- 


able schoolmaster, both in and out of town, and always, took 
an interest in common schools. The last year of his life, he 
was afflicted with paralysis. He lived universally esteemed, 
and died, Aug. 26, 1836, leaving a good name, as a worthy 
man and useful citizen. Daniel Gordon, Town Clerk. 

"March 11th, 1844." 

Mr. Patten was never married. He lived on the home- 
stead with his maiden sisters, one of whom still survives. 


This gentleman, for many years an inhabitant of this 
town, was the first minister of Lyndeborough. He came 
to this town immediately from Derryfield in 1778. His 
ministry in Lyndeborough was short, [See Genealogy.] What 
year he was settled there, we are not certain. He must have 
been there as early as 1756, as appears by the following letter 
of dismission, found among his papers. 

" To the Church of Christ at Lyndeborough, under the 
pastoral charge of the Rev. Mr. John Rand, the Church in 
Middleton send, Greeting : 

" Rev. and Beloved : — Pursuant to the Request of our 
Brother and Sister, Mr. Nathaniel Putnam and Mrs. Abigail 
Putnam, we hereby certify that they, our said Brother and 
Sister, have been Regularly admitted to the holy communion 
with us. And that, whilst with us, have led a conversation 
becoming their Profession. And being, by the disposal of 
God's Providence, who sets bounds to all men's habitations, 
Removed from us into your neighborhood, we do hereby 
Recommend them to your holy Fellowship and communion. 
Praying that grace, mercy and peace may be multiply'd unto 
you and them, through our Lord Jesus Christ. 

"Samuel Nichols, Mod." 

There is no date to this, but on the back is endorsed : — 
"Rec'd Sept. 7, 1756." 

Some trouble seems to have arisen before Mr. Rand had 
been long at Lyndeborough. We have a letter dated 1761, 
from Hon. Benj. Lynde of Salem, one of the proprietors of 


the township, and from whom it was named, (it having been 
previously called New Canada.) The letter is written to Mr. 
Rand, and thus closes : — 

" Let me therefore beg of you to come into some measure 
for an accommodation ; and if the council, which they are to 
have shortly, doth not please you, join with them in a 
mutual council, or in some five discreet persons, who shall 
settle and adjust all matters between you, that so peace may 
be again restored to your unhappy, divided place. 

" Hoping that God, who is the God of peace, will incline 
your and your people's hearts to such measures as may put 
an end to these unhappy quarrels, I remain 

" Your friend and humble servant, 

" Benj. Lynde." 

After Mr. Rand removed to this vicinity, he seldom 
preached. He engaged in civil affairs, being Justice of the 
Peace, Town Clerk, &c. He was evidently a man of con- 
siderable reading and general information, but seemed to be 
unsuccessful in worldly accumulation, verifying the Scrip- 
tural adage, "Nor riches to men of understanding." 

He was for a time much embarrassed in his worldly 
circumstances. Among his papers is a document, guaran- 
teeing to him entire exemption from any molestation on 
account of debts ; and the first signature is of that distin- 
guished man, afterwards first President of the American 
Congress. This singular paper thus closes : — 

" And that it shall and may be lawful for the said John 
Rand to plead and give in evidence this our present writing 
and safe conduct, in full Bar and Discharge of the Debt or 
Debts of such Person or Persons, by whom he, the said Rand 
shall be thus arrested, sued or molested, as aforesaid. 

"In witness whereof we, the said creditors of the said 
John Rand, have hereunto set our hands and seals this 
twenty-first day of November, in the year of our Lord one 
thousand seven hundred and seventy. John Hancock." 

But how happened it, the enquiry may be, that a man up 
here in the woods, as it then was, should be associated thus 
with an individual of such celebrity ? The enquiry is easily 
answered. Mr. Rand was Librarian at Harvard College from 
1753 to 1755, the very years that John Hancock and John 


Adams were undergraduates at Cambridge. Thus they were 
placed in interesting relations to each other, and no doubt 
cherished a mutual regard. Rand, by some means, became 
Hancock's debtor. How strange the vicissitudes of this 
world ! 

At one end of the old burying-yard in this town, without 
a stone to mark the exact spot, there repose the remains of a 
man who was conversant, in their youth, with Hancock and 
Adams, afterwards the master spirits of the American Revo- 
lution ; and it is to the praise of Hancock, that, after the 
lapse of thirty years, he came to the relief of Rand in adversity, 
and threw the protection of his name around the early friend 
of his college career. 

John Rand, a grandson of his, has been for some years an 
artist of note in London. 


This gentleman, for many years an active public-spirited 
citizen of this town, was extensively engaged in the lumber 
trade, and one of the first proprietors of navigation on Mer- 
rimac river. He superintended the building of the locks and 
canals belonging to the " Union Lock and Canal Company." 
In connexion with Maj. Caleb Stark, he built and owned the 
first canal-boat that ever floated on the waters of the Merri- 
mac. It was named the Experiment, was built at Bedford 
Centre, and drawn three miles, on wheels, to the Basswood 
Landing, so called by forty yoke of oxen, at which place it 
was launched in presence of the town's people, who met on 
the occasion to witness the novelty of the day. It was 
loaded and went to Boston, and the following notice is taken 
from the Boston Centinel of 1812 : — 

" Arrived from Bedford, N. H., Canal-Boat Experiment, 
Isaac Riddle, Captain, via. Merrimac River and Middlesex 

Upon her arrival at Boston, she was received by many 
cheers and the firing of canon. From this, commenced a 
large and extensive inland navigation on the Merrimac, until 
1845, when interrupted by rail-roads. 

He built factories at Souhegan, afterwards called Riddle's 


Village, where, in company with his sons, Wm. P., James 
and Isaac, under the name of I. Riddle & Sons, he carried on 
an extensive manufacture of Cotton, Nails and Wool, until 
the establishment was destroyed by fire, in 1829. 

He filled many offices, having been civil magistrate and 
representative of the town. After his third marriage, he 
resided in duincy, Mass., where he died, [See Genealogy.] 
His remains were removed to Bedford, and buried in the 
family tomb. 


The following sketch is from the Rev. Wm. Cogswell, 
D. D. : — 

"Hon. John Vose, son of Lieut. Samuel Vose, was born in 
Bedford, N. H., July 10, 1766. He took degree at Dart- 
mouth College, 1795, — one of the best scholars of his 
class, though it contained such men as Heman Allen, Abi- 
jah Bigelow, Luther Jewett, members of Congress : Judah 
Dana, U. S. Senator, Judge Nichols Emery, and Drs. Samuel 
Worcester and Thomas Snell. His Commencement exercise 
was a 'Philosophical Oration on Thunder-Storms.' He 
excelled in mathematics and philosophy. After leaving 
College, he immediately became Preceptor of the Academy 
at Atkinson, N. H. For twenty-one years, he had charge 
of that Institution, which is one of the oldest, and has been 
one of the most respectable in the State. In 1820, he removed 
to Pembroke, and became Principal of the Academy in that 
place, where he continued eleven years.' In 1831, he returned 
to Atkinson, where he spent the remainder of his days. 

" In 1801, Mr. Vose was appointed Justice of Peace, of the 
Quorum of 1815, and was continued in office till his death. 
He was Senator in the General Court, from the third sena- 
torial district, in 1816. He was for many years Deacon of 
the church in Atkinson, and at his death, was President of 
the Board of Trustees of the Academy in that place. He 
was President of the Merrimac County Temperance Society, 
from its formation until he left the County, in 1831 j and, 
for many years, was one of the Vice-Presidents of the 
'American Sunday School Union.' All these trusts, he ful- 
filled with great propriety, faithfulness and acceptance. 


" Mr. Vose published an Oration, delivered before the Phi 
Beta Kappa Society, of Dartmouth College, in 1805, and an 
Oration on the 4th of July, delivered at Bedford, N. H., in 
1809 ; also, an Oration before the Rockingham Agricultural 
Society, at Derry, in 1813. He published, in 1827, a < Sys- 
tem of Astronomy,' containing 252 pages of octavo size ; 
and also, in 1832, a < Compendium of Astronomy,' for Com- 
mon-Schools, of 12mo. form. These are not merely compi- 
lations, but original and valuable works. 

" Mr. Vose was devout, modest and exemplary, consistent 
in all his deportment, as a man and a Christian. His last 
illness was a gradual decline, and he died, much lamented, 
April 3d, 1S40, at the age of 74, in the peace and hope of 
the gospel. He has left a wife and five children. At his 
funeral, a very appropriate discourse was delivered by Rev. 
John Kelley, of Hampstead, from Acts viii. 2 : ' And devout 
men carried Stephen to his burial, and made great lamenta- 
tion over him.' " 


Removed to Bedford, from Londonderry, in 1756, having 
previously obtained a lot of land in this town, and commenced 
a settlement on the farm now occupied by Thomas Bursiel. 
He was a man of firmness and decision, having been called 
to sustain many important offices in town. Previous to the 
Revolution, he held a commission under the crown. The 
instrument is still in possession of the family, and a copy of 
it is here given for the curiosity of the reader. It is in good 
penmanship, and bears the great seal of State. 

" Province of New Hampshire. 

" George the Third, By the Grace of God, of Great Britain, 

France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, &c. 
\T <? 1 r ^° J°h n Wallace of Bedford, within our Province 
<- '* aforesaid, Yeoman, Greeting: 

11 Know you that We, reposing special Trust and Confi- 
dence in your Loyalty, Skill and Integrity, Have, by and 
with the Advice of our Trusty and well-beloved John Went- 
worth, Esq., our Captain-General, Governor and Commander- 


in-Chief in and over our said Province of New Hampshire, 
thought fit to constitute and appoint, and by these presents 
Do constitute and appoint you, the said John Wallace, a 
Coroner within the said Province. To have and to hold the 
said office of Coroner, together with all Privileges, Fees, Per- 
quisites and Advantages, to the same belonging, or in any 
wise appertaining, during our Pleasure. In Testimony 
whereof, We have caused the public Seal of our said Prov- 
ince to be hereunto affixed. Witness our aforesaid Governor 
and Commander-in-Chief the 29th day of March, in the 
ninth year of our Reign, Annoque Domini, 1769. 

J. Wentwcrth. 
" By his Excellency's Command, 

T. Atkinson, Jr., Sec." 

" Province of New Hampshire, 12th Dec. 1770. 

" Then the above-named John Wallace personally appeared 
and took oath and subscribed the respective Oaths appointed 
by Act of Parliament, instead of the Oaths of Allegiance and 
Supremacy ; also, the Oaths of Office. 

" Before us, 

Theodore Atkinson, ) ^ , ,, 
j onath an vv arner, } 

But although Mr. Wallace held an important office under 
the King, he was among the foremost in sustaining the rights 
and liberties of the people during the Revolutionary strug- 
gle. Such was the excitement in the public mind at that 
trying period, that in some instances, the people, taking the 
matter into their own hands, administered what is now called 
" Lynch-Law," to those whom they suspected of being 
inimical to the cause of the Colonies and favorable to the 

It is related of Mr. Wallace, (the anecdote shows his influ- 
ence at the time,) that one of these lawless assemblages 
being collected at a house on Amherst plain, a house then 
occupied by the Hon. J. K. Smith, for the purpose of exam- 
ining suspicious persons, a gentleman of the legal profession 
was placed upon the hogshead for interrogation, and proving 
somewhat obstinate, was about to suffer violence, when John 
Wallace, though a strong Whig, kindly interposed, and, by 
his influence, saved the person's life. 



There is a plain and unpretending head-stone in the 
burying-ground at Stevens' Corner, in the west part of this 
town, which marks the resting-place of Mrs. Hannah 
Sprague, wife of Benjamin Sprague. She was the daughter 
of Thomas Barnes, and grand-daughter of John Barnes, of 
Hingham, Mass., one of the original grantees of Bedford. 
She was born in Merrimac. She came to this town with 
her husband, who was a native of Billerica, Mass. They 
were among the first settlers here. 

They lived for a great many years upon the farm now 
owned by Leonard C. French, Esq. ; indeed, Mr.' Sprague 
first cleared the woods from off this lot. All his numerous 
family were born here. Their children have all removed 
from amongst us. Many of them are, with their respected 
parents, numbered with the dead. One son, Dr. Alden 
Sprague, lately died at Little-Rock, Arkansas, where he had 
resided for a long time, and was highly respected as an able 
and excellent physician, and an honest and honorable man. 
The mother was a superior, an extraordinary woman. 
Nobody, who lived in the " West Parish,'' or near "Chestnut- 
hills," forty years ago, can have forgotten her. 

The writer of this notice, whose memory of events extends 
over something more than half a century, and whose lot it 
has been to have known personally as many men and women 
as perhaps almost any individual of his age, cannot now call 
to mind so rare a specimen of active benevolence, of devotion 
to the welfare of others, of self-sacrificing and unremitting 
efforts in the cause of humanity, as was daily exhibited in 
the life of that amiable and excellent woman and relative, 
whom everybody delighted to call Aunt Sprague. 

It is all but impossible to present to the mind of one of 
this generation the actual condition of those who dwelt in 
the neighborhood of this woman fifty or sixty years since. 
The settlers were then in the midst of a forest. There were 
no roads, no bridges, no carriages. Families lived miles 
apart. And yet sickness and death often came among them. 
In the event of any sudden illness or serious accident, even 
within the memory of him who pens these lines, it was ex- 
ceedingly difficult to procure the aid of a physician. We 
could, indeed, get Dr. Goodrich of Merrimac, or Dr. McMul- 



len of New Boston, or even Dr. Gove of Goffstown, if a horse 
and a rider who knew the way to their respective residences, 
could be found, to send for one of these worthy gentlemen. 
But what was to come of the suffering party, while the mes- 
senger was riding from ten to a dozen miles, through the 
woods, and hunting, first for the doctor, and then for the 
doctor's horse ; and while the doctor himself was returning 
through this long and devious track ? With ordinary good 
luck, in the most favorable times, when the streams were not 
so much swollen as to prevent the fording, when no trees had 
been blown down and across the paths to hinder us, when 
we found the doctor, and caught his horse readily, it required 
more time, and more personal labor and exposure, to get these 
services, than it would now, by the aid of the magnetic tele- 
graph and steam power, to procure the best skill of the 
profession from the city of Boston, a distance of fifty miles 
or more. 

But what became of the patient during these dreadful 
delays ? Why, they sent for Aunt Sprague. And she 
always came. No matter what was the weather, or what 
the time, — wet or dry, hot or cold, winter or summer, in 
snow or rain, in sunshine or storm, early or late, night or day, 
she came. Everybody sent for her, and she always came. 
She has crossed the dark forest, between her residence and 
Chestnut-hills, hundreds of times, on foot, upon such errands 
of mercy. Once she went, at great peril, after a very heavy 
fall of snow. It was in the night, when she heard of the 
distress and suffering of a neighboring woman. Nothing 
could restrain her from making an effort to afford the aid so 
much and so speedily required. Taking a lantern, and 
putting on her snow-shoes, she was enabled, with the aid of 
her husband, to reach the bedside of her friend, and probably 
to be the means of saving her life. Her manner was so 
bland, so soft, so quiet, that one felt her soothing influence 
the moment she entered the door of the sick-room. She 
knew so well what to say, and when and how to say it, that 
she at once gained your confidence, and you submitted to all 
she prescribed. Nobody could reconcile you to your condi- 
tion, as a patient, half so well as she could. From the hand 
of no other would you as readily receive the nauseating and 
sickening, though urgently necessary, apothecary's draught. 
And she would remain with you after the doctor had left you. 
She would raise your aching head, cool your excited and 


feverish brow, and watching over you with the vigilance of 
a mother, she would minister to every want, never leaving 
you until she could perceive undoubted symptoms of return- 
ing health. And this service she rendered, and these duties 
she performed, over and over and over again, for everybody 
in the vicinity where her lot was cast, for no other earthly 
compensation or reward, except the gratification of relieving 
the suffering of her friends, and of doing good in her day 
and generation. She died at a very advanced age, over 
eighty, very suddenly, having suffered herself very little 
from ill health. 



ABBOTT. George Abbott, ancestor of a numerous proge- 
ny, emigrated, as tradition says, from Yorkshire, England, 
about 1640, and was among the first settlers in Andover, in 
1643, and a proprietor. In 1647, he married Hannah Chand- 
ler, daughter of Wm. and Annis Chandler, by whom he had 
eleven children. 

John, son of George, married Sarah Barker, by whom he 
had nine children. 

Ephraim, son of John, married Sarah Hunt, and had 
eleven children. 

Ephraim, son of Ephraim, Amherst, N. H., married Mary 
Abbott, and afterwards Hannah Kneeland, and had seven 

Ephraim, (Dea..) son of the last named, born at Andover, 
Mass., 1752, married Dorothy Stiles, and had children, Sarah, 
Dorothy, Samuel, and Ephraim. After residing in Deering, 
Greenfield, and Mt. Vernon, he removed to Bedford, about 
1799. He died in 1828, aged 86. 

Sarah, daughter of Dea. Ephraim, married Dea. Jonathan 
Rand. She was born 1787 ; died 1848. 

Dorothy, daughter of Dea. Ephraim, born 1772, married 
David Abbott, Windham, N. H. She died in 1822. 

Ephraim, son of Dea. Ephraim, born, 1780. 

Samuel, son of Dea. Ephraim, born 1777, settled in Mid- 
dleborough, Mass., 1803, afterwards in Chester, and removed 
to Bedford, 1827. He now resides in Antrim, having been 
in the ministry fifty years. He married Sarah Rand, and had 
nine children, as follows. Samuel, born 1799, died 1800 ; 
Ephraim, born 1801 ; Sally G., bora 1804; Mille R., born 
1807, died 1848 ; Hepzibah, N., bora 1809, died 1841 ; Sam- 
uel W., born 1812; Dorothy S., born 1813; John R., born 
1817 ; S. Gano, born 1819, now in the ministry. 

[Note. — All the children, and nearly all the grandchildren 
of Rev. John Rand, and also those of Dea. Ephraim Abbott, 
have become hopefully pious.] 


ADAMS. Rev. John Adams was minister in Durham, N. 
H., and also practised Medicine. Graduated Harvard College. 
1745, died 1792. He was at one time, instrumental in saving 
the life of James Sullivan, afterwards Governor of Massachu- 
setts, at Saco, when attacked with bilious colic. He moved 
to Washington Plantation, Newfield, Maine, about the close 
of the Revolutionary War. He practised medicine and 
preached, till he died, June 4, 1792, aged 66. His wife, 
Hannah Chesley, survived him until March, 1814, when she 
died, aged 75. 

John, son of the above, born in Durham, April 20, 1765. 

John, son of second John, born in Newfield, Maine, Nov. 
11, 1792. Married Mary, daughter of Joshua Small, Esq., of 
Limington, Maine, June 6, 1821. She died of spotted fever, 
Oct. 19, 1821. He married Sept. 26, 1822, Sarah Dutch, by 
whom he had Margaret Ilsley, born Nov. 25, 1825, and Sarah 
Dutch, born Nov. 11, 1729. His second wife died March 12, 
1830, aged 32. He married Catharine, daughter of Samuel 
Chandler, Esq., of Bedford, Jan 11, 1838, by whom he had 
Samuel Chandler, born June 16, 1840. He moved to Bed- 
ford, Feb. 9, 1841. Catharine, his wife, died Feb. 21, 1849, 
aged 40. April 23, 1850, he married Lavina, daughter of 
Joseph Patten, Esq., Bedford. 

AIKEN. Edward Aiken, with his wife, Barbara, came 
from the North of Ireland, and settled in Londonderry, at an 
early period, where they spent the residue of their lives, and 
died at an advanced age ; Barbara, in August, 1744, and 
Edward in Nov. 1847, and were buried in the old graveyard 
in Derry, leaving their only child, Nathaniel, who was born, 
probably in Ireland, May 14, 1696. 

Nathaniel, son of Edward, married Margaret Cockran, of 
Londonderry, Dec. 1, 1726. He died in July, 1782, aged 
86, and Margaret, his wife, in 1788, sixty-two years after 
marriage. They had issue, — Edward, born Sept. 3, 1729, 
died 1808 ; John, born Nov. 18, 1728 ; Ellen, born Nov. 1, 
Nathaniel, born May 31, 1732; Jane, born 1734; Christian, 
born May 1, 1736 ; James, born Oct. 4, 1738 ; Ninian, 
born March 3, 1741 ; William, born Feb. 20, 1743 ; Susan- 
nah, born Feb. 23, 1745; Thomas, born Feb. 27, 1747; 
Margaret, born Sept. 3, 1750. 


John, second son of Nathaniel, was married in L758, to 
Annis Orr, eldest daughter of John and Margaret Orr, born in 
the Noith of Ireland, March 28, 1734, whence she removed 
with her parents, at an early age, to Bedford. They had 
issue,— John, born Feb. 15, 1759, died Feb. 20, 1811; 
Phineas, born Dec. 16, 1761, died April, 1836; Margaret, 
born May 16, 1764, died March, 1840 ; Susannah, born Feb. 
2, 1766 ; Annis, born xVlarch 20, 1769, died, June, 1839 ; 
Sarah, born April 28, 1771 ; Mary, born June 16, 1773 ; 
Jane, born Feb. 12, 1776. John and Annis Aiken, the 
parents, remained in Londonderry, some eight or ten years 
after marriage, when they removed, with their [four eldest 
children, to Bedford. John died April 7, 1793, aged 64, and 
Annis died Sept. 1813, aged 79. He became an elder, prob- 
ably in Londonderry. 

John, eldest son of John and Annis, was married Dec. 25, 
1781, to Mary McAffee, of Bedford, who was born May 16, 
1763. They resided in Bedford at the time of their marriage, 
and Lr about ten years after, when they removed to Merri- 
mac, where they spent the residue of their days. They 
had numerous issue, and died, John, Feb. 20, 1811, aged 52, 
and Mary, April 12, 1828, aged 64. 

Phineas, second son of John and Annis, was married Dec. 
8, 1789, to Elizabeth Patterson, of Amherst, and had issue, — 
Nancy P., born Sept. 16, 1790 ; Lucy, born July 15, 1792, 
died Nov. 23, 1S31 ; Betsey, born Sept. 28, 1794, died Oct. 

21, 1843 ; John, born Jan. 30, 1797 ; Silas, born May 14, 
1799 ; Charles, born ' March 2, 1S02 ; David, born June 7, 
1804 ; Sarah Annis, born Dec. 31, 1806 ; Phineas, born April 

22, 1809, died Sept. 10, 1S13. Phineas, the father, was an 
elder in the church, and resided in Bedford, from early child- 
hood, till his death, which occurred April 18, 1836. His 
widow still survives. He was a soldier in the Revolutionary 

Nancy P., daughter of Phineas and Elizabeth Aiken, was 
married Nov. 22, 1809, to Jonathan Aiken, of Goffstown, N. 
H. Their children were, — James, born Nov. 10, 1810; 
David, born April 10, 1812, died Sept. 1818 ; Elizabeth, born 
March 12, 1S14; John C, born March 12, 1816; Charles, 
March 13, 1818; Jonathan, Oct. 12, 1819; Nancy, Sept. 14, 
1821 ; Henry M., born Sept. 10, 1823 ; Jane, born April 12, 
1826 ; Silas, June 12, 1829, died 1849 ; Walter H., Septem- 
ber 28, 1831 ; George Edward, born January 1, 1834. 


Of the children of Jonathan and Nancy P., James married 
Caroline G. Clark, Brattleborough, Vt. ; Elizabeth married 
H. D. Pinkerton, Derry, N. H., and has had four children, one 
having died ; John C. married Sarah A. King, and has one 
child ; Charles married Cordelia B. Hyde, and has had five 
children ; Jonathan married Harriet C. Merrill, and has one 
child ; Nancy married Isaac N. Metcalf, and has two children ; 
Jane married John P. Tenny, and has three children. Jona- 
than, the father, died in Indiana, Aug. 28, 1839. 

Lucy, daughter of Phineas. and Elizabeth, was married in 
1816, to Fred. A. Mitchell/M. D., of Bedford; they had 
children, — Phineas, born April 7, 1817, died April, 1826; 
Crnrles F., born Nov. 16, 1818 ; Elizabeth A., born July 29, 
1821; John Orr, born Dec. 6, 1824; Martha T., born Oct. 
16, 1826 ; George H., born May 12, 1828 ; Henry A., bom 
Oct. 8, 1830. Lucy, the mother, died Nov. 23, 1831. 

Charles F., son of Dr. Mitchell, married Lucy A. Swan, of 
Peterborough, N. H., January 13, 1848, and has one child. 
Charles F. died 1850. 

Betsey, third daughter of Phineas and Elizabeth, was mar- 
ried, Sept 30, 1818, to Isaac Riddle, Bedford. Their children 
were, Ann Elizabeth, born Feb. IS, 1820, died Jan., 1850; 
Isaac N., born Aug. 12, 1822; Jane A., born July 6, 1825; 
John A., born Sept 8, 1826; Silas A., born July 22, 1831. 
Betsey, the mother, died at Bedford, Oct. 21, 1843, aged 49. 

Jane A., daughter of Isaac and Betsey Riddle, was married, 
Oct. 18, 1849, to B. F. White, of Manchester, N. H. 

John, son of Phineas and Elizabeth Aiken, was married 
Nov. 14, 1826, to Harriet Russell Adams, of Hanover. They 
had children, — Charles Augustus, born Oct. 30, 1827 ; Har- 
riet Adams, born Feb. 25, 1829 ; John, bom April 28, 1830, 
died July, 1831. Harriet, the mother, died at Columbia, S. 
C, July 30, 1830, aged 35. John next married, May 28, 
1832, Mary Means Appleton, of Amherst. Their children 
are, William A., born April 18, 1833; JohnF., born Oct. 31, 
1835 . Mary E., born Feb. 5, 1838 ; Alfred L., born May 13, 
1840; Jane A., born Jan 5, 1845. The family of J. Aiken, 
Esq., reside at Lowell, Mass. Harriet A., the eldest daughter, 
was married June 1, 1848, to Rev. William H. Lord, Mont- 
pelier, Vt., and has one child. 

Silas, son of Phineas and Elizabeth Aiken, was married 
March 24, 1829, to Mary Osgood, Salem. Mass. They had 
children, — Edward, bom April 10, 1830 ; Mary Elizabeth, 


born July 9, 1832 ; Susan Endicott, June 19, 1835. Mary, 
the mother, died Feb. 8, 1836, aged 32. Silas next married, 
May 24, 1837, Sophia Parsons, of Amherst, Mass., daughter 
of Rev. David Parsons, D. D. Their children have been, 
Henry Homer, born Jan. 26, 1843, died Sept. 1, 1846; Har- 
riet Sophia, born Jan. 12, 1848. Silas was pastor of the 
Congregational Church in Amherst, N. H., from March, 1829, 
to March, 1837 ; of the Park St. Church, Boston, from March, 
1837, to July, 1848, and at the present time of the church in 
Rutland, Vt. 

Charles, son of Phineas and Elizabeth, was married, June 
1839, to Adaline Willey, of Campton, N. H. Their children 
have been, Charles Edward, born July, 1840; Adaline E., 
born March, 1842 ; William Henry, Oct., 1844 ; George 
Franklin, born March, 1848 ; a daughter, born Jan. 1850. 
In addition, they had, in 1846 and '47, two children, who 
severally died on the day of their birth. The family reside 
in Wisconsin. 

David, son of Phineas and Elizabeth, was married Oct. 24, 
1844, to Lydia W. Root, Greenfield, Mass., who died, Nov. 
13, 1845. He next married, Nov. 28, 1848, Mary E. Adams, 
of Amherst, Mass. They reside at Greenfield, Mass. 

Sarah Annis, daughter of Phineas and Elizabeth, was 
married, Oct. 20, 1829, to William P. Black, of Manchester, 
Vt. They have had children, — Harriet A., born Feb. 15, 
1831, died April 1837 ; James P., born Aug. 26, 1833 ; Sarah 
E., born Feb. 19, 1837 ; Charles E., born Feb. 13, 1840 ; 
William A., born Dec. 30, 1842; Helen M. born Nov. 6, 1848. 
They reside at Manchester, Vt. 

Margaret, daughter of John and Annis, was married, 1787, 
to Josiah Chandler, then of GofTstown, N. H. About the 
year 1799, they removed to Pomfret, Vt. They had seven 
children. They lived and died in Pomfret, Josiah in 1837, 
his wife in 1840. 

Susannah, second daughter of John and Annis, was mar- 
ried in 1790, to Jonathan Barron, of Merrimac. They 
removed soon after marriage, to Rockingham, Vt., where they 
resided till after the birth of their youngest child. They then 
removed to Nunda, Livingston Co.. N. Y., where they now 
reside. They have had eight children. 

Annis, third daughter of John and Annis, was married, in 
1811, to Abner Campbell, of Londonderry, N. H. She died 
without children, June, 1839, aged 70. 

Sarah, fourth daughter of John and Annis, was married, 


1791, to Samuel Gilchrist, of Goffstown. They had nine 
children, of whom Sophronia was married to Mark Burnham, 
Hamilton, U. C, and Margaret A., to Dr. Daniel Little, 
Goffstown. Samuel, the father, died Aug. 31, 1818. His 
widow married, April 28, 1822, Capt. John Smith, Goffstown, 
for her second husband, with whom she still lives. 

Mary, daughter of John and Annis, was married, 1814, to 
William Reed, of Litchfield N. H. They had one son, 
Phineas, who is married. 

Jane, youngest daughter of John and Annis, was married 
Nov. 17, 1817, to James Aiken of Goffstown. He died with- 
out children, May 7, 1809. Jane next married, April 11, 
1831, Rev. Walter Harris, of Dunbarton, N. H., who died 
Dec. 25, 1843, leaving her, the second time, a widow. 

AIKEN. James, was born in 1745. He came from Lon- 
donderry, N. H., to Bedford, about 1760. His parents 
came from Ireland, were of Scotch descent, and settled in 
Londonderry. His mother became a widow, and married 
Robert Riddle, who removed to Colrain, Mass. He was a 
tanner by trade, and settled on the farm of Robert Riddle, 
now owned by Capt. John McAllister. He was Captain of 
the Militia Company in Bedford, and drafted the soldiers 
from this town who served in the Revolutionary war. He 
married Margaret Waugh, Nov. 17, 1762. He died of a can- 
cer in his neck, May 13, 1787, aged 42. He left a good 
estate. Margaret, his wife, was daughter of Robert Waugh, 
who left Ireland, July 22, 1737, and landed at Boston, Nov. 
1, 1727. She was born Sept. 23, 1741. After the death of 
her husband, she lived upon the homestead, and brought up 
the family. The children were : Ann, Margaret C, Robert, 
Sarah, Andrew, Ruhannah, James, Peggy, Hannah, Achsah, 
Olive. Mrs. Aiken was a woman of great perseverance, 
possessed an amiable character, and was highly esteemed. 
For many years, she was a member of the Presbyterian 
Church. She died, Sept. 1, 1838, aged 97. She was buried 
in the family tomb of Isaac Riddle, Esq. 

Ann, eldest child of James and Margaret Aiken, was born 
in 1764 ; married Isaac Riddle, Esq., June 5, 17S8 ; died 
April 6, 1804. 

Margaret C, born June 10, 1766 ; died Jan. 24, 176S. 

Robert, born Sept 28, 1767 ; died Feb. 22, 1786. 

Sarah, born March 28, 1769 ; she married John Gilchrist, 
of Goffstown, Aug. 24, 1790. 


Andrew, born Dec. 26, 1770. Settled upon the farm ad- 
joining that of his father, now owned by Wm. McPherson. 
In 1797, he married Martha, daughter of Wm. McAllister. 
They removed to Newport, N. H., where they now reside. 

Ruhannah, born Sept. 12, 1772 ; died Oct. 8, 1778. 

James, born Oct. 3, 1774 ; married Mary Kennedy, and 
was drowned in Merrimac river, June 12, 1823, aged 49. He 
left two sons, Benjamin F., and Robert, who reside in Goffs- 

Peggy, born June 3, 1776 ; married Thomas Parker, Sept. 
10, 1795, and settled at Piscataquog Village; afterwards 
removed to Candia, and died in 1825, aged 49. 

Hannah, born March 27, 1778 ; married Wm. Parker, 
Esq., of Goffstown, Dec. 17, 1800, and died Sept. 30, 1818, 
aged 40. 

Jane, born Sept. 4, 1780 ; married Capt. John McAllister, 
March 13, 1S00. They reside on the homestead. 

Achsah, born March 27, 1782; died July 26, 1806, 
aged 26. 

Olive, born Sept. 19, 1785 ; died Feb. 15, 1806, aged 21. 

ATWOOD. John Atwood emigrated with two brothers, 
from England to this country, and settled in Plymouth, Mass. 
He married and had children, — Zaccheus Waite, Isaac, Han- 
nah and Lydia. He enlisted as a soldier, in the French and 
Indian War, and was killed in 1754. 

Isaac, son of John, was born in Plymouth, June 28, 1747. 
He came to Bedford, about 1778. He was married in 1770, 
to Hannah Chubbuck, and had nine children, — Isaac, Han- 
nah, Lydia. David, John. Submit W., Thomas, Stephen and 
Zaccheus. He married for his second wife, Lydia Whit- 
marsh, of Abington, Mass., in 1800, with whom he lived till 
his death, in 1836. 

Isaac, son of Isaac, born in Plymouth, June 11, 1772, was 
married to Betsey Chandler, Dec. 27, 1799. Had nine chil- 
dren, — Elijah, Hannah, Eliza, James, Eunice, Lydia, George 
Orr, Sarah, Harriet, and Philomela. 

Hannah, daughter of Isaac, Sen'r, born Nov. 11, 1774, 
married Samuel Smith, Feb. 15, 1793. 

Lydia, born Nov. 12, 1776, married Alexander Patten. 


David, bom March 24, 1779, married Mary Bell, Sept. 21, 
1702. They had children, — Hannah, Joseph, Mary, Olive, 
John, Daniel Gordon, David, Jane, Clarinda, and Isaac Brooks. 
Of these, Hannah, born Dec. 11, 1802, still lives in Bedford. 
Joseph, born Feb 13, 1804, married Esther M. Weston, 
Nashua, Feb. 11, 1S34. In 1841, he removed to the State 
of New York, and thence, in 1849, to Peoria Co., 111., where 
he now resides. Mary, born July 27, 1805, still lives in 
Bedford. Olive, born Feb. 8, 1807, married Thomas Bursiel, 
Jan. 14, 1841. John, born Dec. 23, 1808, married Clarissa 
Treadway, Hamilton, N. Y., Sept. 4, 1832 ; he resided in 
Hamilton, till 1848, when he removed to Albany, where he 
now resides. Daniel G. born April 12, 1812, married Margaret 
A. Barr, of Bedford, May 2, 1837, and had five children, Eliza 
M., Caroline, Julia Ann, Daniel Webster, and Clara ; he still 
lives in Bedford. David, born Dec. 15, 1815, married Mary 
Ann Poe, Madison, Wis., Aug. 23, 1849, where he now lives. 
Jane G., born, Aug. 21, 1819, married Edward Barr, Bedford, 
where she now lives. Clarinda, born July 12, 1822, died Jan. 
22, 1838. Isaac B., born April 19, 1824, died May 28, 1837. 

John, son of Isaac, Sen'r, born July, 1781, died Feb. 27, 
1804, unmarried. 

Submit W., daughter of Isaac, Sen'r, born July 5, 1783, 
married James Darrah, Sept. 16, 1802. 

Thomas, born July 22, 1785, married, in 1808, Miss Susan 
Holmes, of Londonderry, and had eleven children, — Albert, 
Elvira, Susan, Harriet, Sarah, Thomas, Martha, Jane, Charles, 
Catharine, Hannah, Frances, and Ann Elizabeth. He removed 
to Nunda, New York," in 1840, where he now resides. 

Stephen, born May 19, 1790, married Emily S. Lamb, of 
Shrewsbury, Mass., and had six children. He now resides in 

Zaccheus, born, August 31, 1792, lives in Bedford, 



[D Ho elling- House of the late Nathan Barnes, Esq., now 
owned by Gardner Nevins, Esq.] 

BARNES. Thomas, son of Rowland, came from Hing- 
ham, Norfolk County, England, to Hingham, Mass., in 1637. 
His son married Anne Canterbury. John, their son, married 
Elizabeth Yinton. From them sprung nearly all of the name 
in New England. Thomas, son of John and Elizabeth Vin- 
ton, came to New Hampshire, and commenced a farm in 
what is now Merrimac. He married Rachel Barrett for his 
first wife, and Susannah Cummings for the second. His 
children were Asa, Thomas,' Sarah, Lydia, Hannah, Betsy, 
John and Cornelius, all by his first wife. Asa settled in this 
town, on the land now owned by Gardner Nevins, Esq., and 
married Esther Richardson. Their children were Asa, 
Nathan, Polly, Anna, Cornelius, Thomas and Josiah. Nathan 
married Anna Remick. of Newburyport, Mass., and by her 
had children, — Clarissa, Isaac, Esther Richardson, Enoch, 


Mary West, David Patten, Nancy Jane, Sarah Ann, and 
Henry Winslow. They have all removed from Bedford, ex- 
cept Esther, who married Gardner Nevins, Esq., and now 
resides on the land granted to John Barnes, one of the 
original grantees of the town. Of the other children of 
Nathan Barnes, Clarissa married Isaac Parker French, and 
now resides in Danvers, Mass. Isaac O. married Hannah 
Trask Woodbury, and resides in Boston. He was for some 
time Naval Officer of the Customs for the District of Boston 
and Charlestown, Mass., and afterwards, for several years, 
U. S. Marshal for Massachusetts. Enoch married Susan 
Rebecca Ayer, and resides in Mississippi. Mary married 
William Bradford Tuttle, and resided in Baltimore County 
until her death, in 1843. David Patten married Sarah Wes- 
ton, and resides in St. Louis, Mo. Nancy Jane married 
Rodney G. Boutwell, and Sarah Ann married John Richard- 
son ; they both live in Lyndeborough, N. H. Henry 
Winslow married Sarah Lamb, and resides in Wisconsin. 
Nathan Barnes died, July 9th, 1825 ; Anne, his widow, died 
Nov. 30th, 1848. 

A member of this family, while making a rapid excursion 
in England, in the summer of 1850, had the pleasure of 
visiting Hingham, Norfolk County, for a day or two, where 
he gathered what was to be learned of the early history of 
his ancestors in the old country. Upon leaving Hingham, 
he was kindly presented with the following certificate, which 
is published verbatim, as prepared by the very venerable and 
excellent magistrate whose signature it bears. 

" Extracts from apparently the oldest Register Book of 
"the Parish of Hingham, in the County of Norfolk, Eng- 
" land, commencing in the year 1600." 

" Marriages Anno do : 1610. 
" Rowland Barnes and Alice Coop wer married ye 21st 
" day of October. 

" Baptiseings Anno do : 1612. 
" Ellen daughter of Rowland Barnes was bapt. the 14th of 
" Februarye. 

" Buirials Anno do: 1615. 

"Alice the wife of Rowland Barnes was buried the sixt. 
" of Julye. 


" Baptisings Anno do : 1617. 
" Thomas, the son of Rowland Barnes was baptised the 
" second of November. 

" Baptiseings Anno do : 1622. 

" Grace the daughter of Peter Barnes, was baptised the 
" 28th day of April. 

" Baptiseings An. do : 1634. 
" None. 

" Burials in the same year. 

" Rowland Barnes was buried the eleventh day of Julye. 

" / attest that the above are true extracts and true copies. 

" Ph : Jas : Case, Notary Public, 
" 82d year of his age." 
" Hingham, 25th August, 1850." 

There is no person of the name of Barnes now living in 
Hingham, although the name is a very common one in Lon- 
don and other parts of England. After the most minute and 
faithful examination of the church records, made by the 
above aged magistrate, assisted by his accomplished daughter- 
in-law, Mrs. Gilman, no other notice or memoranda could be 
found, which seemed to refer to this family. It is, however, 
exceedingly gratifying to recover even this account, meagre 
as it is, from authentic records, so very ancient and so liable 
to have been destroyed. 

The writer of this brief family sketch attended divine 
service in the old village church, standing in the midst of 
the burying-ground in Hingham. It is very ancient — evi- 
dently the work of the middle ages — built of stone, and so 
large, that, with its extensive nave and choir, it seems almost 
worthy the name of a cathedral. It has resisted the storms 
and the tempests of centuries, and is now, in its exterior, in 
a perfect state of preservation. Some very fine pieces of 
statuary, in the inside, were marred and broken by the army 
of Cromwell, during the civil war and Revolution, in which 
he was the successful leader. Indeed this beautiful church 
was converted into a stable for horses, by the Protector, as 
was the Old South, in Boston, by the army of George III., 
during our Revolution. 


Thousands of our New England people trace their origin 
to this same Hingham, in Norfolk. Among the families well 
known with us, the Lin coins, the Cushings, and the Gil- 
mans, are from this place. Our late respected Governor, 
John Taylor Gilman, was of the Hingham stock. He has 
two near relatives, who still reside near the old church. 
Samuel H. L. N. Gilman, Esq., and his brother, Col. Gilman, 
of the British army. Both of them bear a strong family 
resemblance to our late Governor, and they are both of them 
highly educated and true English gentlemen, of whose rela- 
tionship the Governor might well have been proud in his 
best days. 

BARR. James Barr, born 1704, in Ballymony, County 
of Antrim, Ireland ; married Ann McPherson, and emigrated 
to America in 1740, with three uncles of the name of Barr, 

— John, Samuel and Gabriel. James settled in Londonderry, 
and had five children, — John, Sarah, James, Samuel and 
Molly. They removed to Goffstown. 

Samuel, son of James, born 1754; married Margaret 
Boies, and settled in Henniker, whence he removed to Bed- 
ford. They had children, — James, Thomas, Ann, John, 
Samuel, William and Robert. 

Thomas, son of Samuel, born 1784; married Abigail 
Palmer, and had eight children, — Edward, Margaret, Ann, 
Elbridge, George, Caroline, Thomas and Robert Palmer. 

John, son of Samuel, born 1789 ; married Nancy Dunlap for 
his first wife, Sophia Richardson for his second, and Clarissa 
Eaton for his third, by which wives he had eleven children, 

— Nancy, John, Matthew, Samuel, Maria, Julia, Ann, David, 
Jumes Rufus, Clinton and Mary. 

Edward, son of Thomas, born Sept. 14, 1813; married 
Jane G. Atwood, and had four children, — Emeline, Olive 
Jane, Harriet Griffin and Lewis Cass. 

John Barr, one of the uncles that came over with James, 
was in the Siege of Londonderry — a soldier under King 
William — and endured all the sufferings and distress of that 
memorable time. The following circumstance is related of 
him : — 

After the Siege, he started for home, overcome with weak- 
ness and faintness. In the evening he came to a house, went 


in, and requested to stay all night. The woman of the house 
said she could not entertain him. " But," says he, " I have 
got in, and unless you are stronger than I, I shall stay." He 
noticed two fowls roasting by the fire. The woman became 
very pleasant, and full of conversation. She said she wanted 
to make a rope, and asked if he could assist. He said he 
could. She got her flax and crank, and they went to work. 
He twisted and stepped back toward the door. She held the 
flax and rope. When he got to the door, he asked if it was 
not long enough. She said no, and he stepped out of the 
door ; at which she threw the rope out and shut the door, 
fastened it, and put his gun and pack out of the window. 
Well, thought he, I am outwitted ; but he travelled on, and 
seeing an old deserted mill, he thought he would turn in 
there for the night, and he concluded the safest place to sleep 
would be in the hopper. He had not been there long, before 
he saw a light approaching the mill, and soon there entered 
a man and woman, with two cooked fowls and a silver 
tankard of beer. The man and woman being very familiar, 
the soldier thought he would like to see what was going on, 
and raising his head for this purpose, the hopper fell, and 
came down with a crash. The two persons fled, leaving the 
fowls and tankard of beer. Our hero got up, made a good 
supper of the fowls, put the remainder in his pouch, and 
with morning departed on his journey. The tankard he 
brought to Londonderry, N. H. 

BARRON. Moses Barron, removed from Chelmsford to 
Bedford, about 1740, and settled on the place now owned by 
Capt. John Patten. By reference to the early records of the 
town, we find he occupied a prominent place in society. He 
was a large land-owner, possessing about 3000 acres in Bed- 
ford, Merrimac and Amherst. He died in 1770. His estate 
was the first settled by the Probate Court. He had two 
wives, by whom he had sixteen children, whose descendants 
are scattered through different States of the Union. Silas 
Barron, third child by his first wife, was the first male child 
born in town. He removed to the then Province of Maine, 
his occupation being that of surveyor of land. He never 
married, and died about 1816, aged 76. 



BELL. John Bell, born in Ireland ; came to Bedford, 
about 1736. In 1739, he was followed by his wife, with 
four children, — John, Joseph, Mary and Susanna. They 
lived some time in a log-house, in what is now called the 
"Old Orchard," and then moved to the "Thirds," so called, 
near where Rodney McLaughlin now resides. His grave- 
stone is seen in the old graveyard. 

John, son of the above, born in Ireland, 1732 ; came with 
his mother to this town when seven years old. He married 
Jane Carr, who soon died, without children. He then mar- 
ried Sarah Bell, of Londonderry, and had eleven children, — 
Joseph, John, Rachel, Susanna and Mary, the rest dying in 

Joseph, son of first John, left town and settled in Halifax, 

Mary, daughter of first John, married Gawn Riddle. 

Susanna, daughter of first John, was lame, and lived 

Joseph, son of second John, born April 17, 1757 ; married 
Mary Houston, June 4th, 1776, and had nine children, — 
Sarah, John, Mary, Isaac, Susanna, Joseph, David, James and 

John, son of second John, married Mary Logan, and died 
early. They had one child, which was drowned. 

Rachel and Susanna, daughters of second John, died 
young and unmarried. 

Mary, daughter of second John, married Daniel Gould, 
and had three children, — John B., Lavina and Daniel G. 

Sarah, daughter of second Joseph, born April 4, 1777, and 
married Daniel Platts, May 11th, 1787, and had three chil- 
dren, — Susanna, Joseph and Daniel Dodge. Susanna and 
Daniel D. died young, and Joseph is not supposed to be 
living. Dec 26th, 1815, she married Oliver Townsend, and 
had one son, Timothy, and is now a widow, residing with 
her son, in Bedford. 

John, son of second Joseph, born Feb. 23, 1779 ; married 
Peggy Brown of Antrim, 1801, where he still resides. 

Mary, daughter of second Joseph, born April 12, 1781 ; 
married David Atwood, Sept. 21, 1802, with whom she still 

Isaac, born April 9th, 1783 ; married Susanna Hutchinson, 
Feb. 3, 1804, and after living in this town a few years, 
moved to Fishersfield, N. H., and died in 1829. 

Susanna, born Sept. 25th, 1785 ; died in infancy. 


Joseph, born March 21st, 1787. Graduated at Dartmouth 
College, 1807. Studied law and settled in Haverhill, N. H. 
About 1821, he married Catharine, daughter of Hon. Mills 
Olcott, of Hanover. In 1840 he removed to Boston, where 
he now resides. He is an eminent lawyer, and has been 
President of the Massachusetts Senate. 

David, born Oct. 16, 1789 ; married Polly Houston, Dec, 
1S08, and settled in Hillsborough. He died in Bedford, Nov. 
27th, 1832. 

James, born Jan. 15, 1792 ; married Mary Barnett, of Am- 
herst, N. H., Sept. 21, 1813, and settled in Amherst ; whence 
he removed, 1831, to Haverhill, N. H., where he now resides. 
For his second wife, he married Rebecca Weston of Amherst, 

Jdcob, born April 30, 1795 ; married Laura, daughter of 
Dr. Ezra Bartlett, Haverhill, N. H., where he now resides. 

BOYNTON. William Boynton, one of the first settlers 
of Buxton, Me., by trade a blacksmith. There is now in 
possession of his great-grandson, in Bedford, a steel trap 
made by him, very ancient, with his mark on the jaws, W. 
B., which has been handed down through former generations. 

William, son of the above, lived in Buxton. 

William, son of second William, born in Buxton ; mar- 
ried Betsey Whitney, of Standish, Me., and moved to Brom- 
field, in that State. 

William, son of third William, born in Buxton, May 14, 
1797. He married, May 17, 1820, Jane, daughter of Capt. 
Andrew Glendinin, of St. Davids, New Brunswick ; her 
father was born in Londonderry, N. H. William and Jane 
had eight children, — William J., born at St. Davids, N. B., 
March 8, 1821; Charlotte A., born at Bow, N. H., June 24, 
1824; Mary J., born at Bow, N. H., May 10, 1S29 ; Melissa 
M., born at Bow, N. H., Jan. 10, 1832 ; Henry P., born at 
Bow, N. H., Dec. 1, 1833; Andrew A., born at Merrimac, 
N. H., Jan. 13, 1839; Robert and Stephen, (twins) born at 
Merrimac, N. H., July 14, 1841. The twins died Sept. 16, 
1841 ; Wm. J. died April 11, 1843 ; his wife, Jane, died Oct. 
23, 1849, aged 50. Sept. 10, 1850, he married Hannah, 
widow of Thomas Gamble, of Manchester, N. H., and daughter 
of Enoch Goodwin. She was born at Londonderry, Nov. 
19, 1810. 


BURNS. John Burns came to America, from London- 
derry, Ireland, in 1740. He landed first in Boston, where he 
resided a few years, and married. Immediately after his 
marriage, he moved to Bedford, and settled on the farm now 
owned by George W. Way, where he lived and died, March 
26, 1788, aged 77. His wife died soon after their removal 
to Bedford, July 9, 1745, aged 21, leaving no children. She 
was buried in the old graveyard, and her gravestone bears 
the oldest inscription in the yard. For his second wife, he 
married Anna McQ,uesten, of Litchfield, N. H., by whom he 
had three sons and five daughters. She died a short time 
after her husband, and no inscription records her birth, age 
or death. Burns was the individual who accompanied James 
McQuaid to Concord, (Suncook) after corn, at the first set- 
tlement of the town, when McQ,uaid was killed by the 
Indians. [See page 105.] Burns was not wounded ; but his 
shirt, with seven bullet-holes, testified to his danger. 

Robert, son of John, married Molly Smith, and settled in 

Margaret, daughter of John, married John McGilvray, 
Merrimac, and lived and died there. 

William, son of John, married Molly Miller, and lived in 
Bedford a few years, on the Gregg place, then moved to Pom- 
fret, Vt. 

Ann, daughter of John, married Elijah Buxton, Merri- 

Jane and Sarah, (twins,) daughters of John. Jane mar- 
ried Wm. Beard, of New Boston ; Sarah married James 
Campbell, of Windham, N. H. 

Elizabeth, daughter of John, married James Campbell, of 

John, son of John, married Elizabeth Moore, and lived in 
Bedford. He was born Sept. 20, 1759, and died Nov. 30, 
1846. Had twelve children, six sons and six daughters. 
John could say, what few can, — "I had a twin brother and 
twin sisters, twin children, twin grand-children and twin great- 
grand-children, twin nieces and twin grand-nieces, and twin 
grand-nephews ; a twin brother-in-law, a twin son-in-law, 
and am a twin myself." 

Esther, daughter of second John, married Benj. Darling, 
of Shelby, N. Y. 

Mary, daughter of second John, married Henry Hale, 


Jane and Sarah, (twins,) daughters of second John. Jane 
married Elijah Coan, of Shelby, N. Y. ; Sarah married Benj. 
Darling, of N. Y., as his second wife, after the death of her 
sister Esther. 

Martha, daughter of second John, married John Kenny, 
New Boston. 

Robert, son of second John, married Margaret McClary, 

Ann, daughter of second John, married Daniel McClyde, 

Wyseman C, son of second John, died young. 

William, son of second John, died young. 

Eucy M., daughter of second John, married Robert F. 
Chase, and lived in Derry. 

David, son of second John, died young. 

Wyseman C, 2d, son of second John, married Eliza Har- 
ris, Windham, and settled in Bedford. Had six children, — 
Mary E., (died young,) Caleb Pearson, Abby J., Thomas 
Savage, Wm. Harris, Lucy Ann. 

CHANDLER. William Chandler, came to this country 
from England, about the year 1637, and settled in Roxbury. 
He brought with him four small children, Thomas, Hannah, 
John and William. Sarah was born after they came here. 
He died of consumption, Jan. 19, 1641. This is supposed 
to be the origin of the name in this country. 

Zachariah, one of the grantees of Bedford, then Narragan- 
sett, No. 5, is supposed to be a descendent of Thomas. He 
signs his name on the record, in the right of his wife's father, 
Thomas Bishop. His son Thomas, was among the first set- 
tlers of the town, and married Hannah, daughter of Col. John 
Goffe, by whom he had four children, three daughters and 
one son. He then died. His widow afterwards married 
Capt. John Bradford, as his second wife, and settled in Am- 
herst, now Milford. He was grandfather to the late Rev. 
Ephraim. P. Bradford, of New Boston, She lived to be ninety 
three or four years of age. She had four or five children by 
her second husband. The eldest daughter by the first hus- 
band, Peggy, married Dea. Richard Ward. Hannah married 
Col. Stephen Peabody, and Sally married Enos Bradford ; 
they all settled in Amherst, now Mount Vernon. Dea. Ward 


left a large family. They removed, about 1793, to Andover, 
Vt., and scattered over the country ; some into Maine. Of 
the Peabody family, two, Thomas and John, were doctors. 
One of the females, Rebecca, was a surgeon doctress, married 
to Gen. Perley Davis, and settled in Montpelier, Vt. Some 
of the family settled in Cambridge, on the river Lamoille. 
Enos Bradford had two daughters and one son. all dead, and 
family extinct. 

Zachariah, only son and youngest child, of Zachariah, 
was born May 28, 1751. During most of his minority, he 
resided with his relatives in Roxbury. At a suitable age, he 
came to reside on, and take the care of his patrimonial estate in 
Bedford, and before he was twenty-one married Sarah Patten, 
second daughter of Capt. Samuel Patten, by whom he had 
two sons and one daughter. He died April 20, 1830, aged 
almost seventy-nine. Sarah, died Nov. 30, 1842, aged ninety- 
three years, eight and a half months ; She died suddenly, in 
the full enjoyment of her mental faculties. 

Thomas, the oldest son, was born Aug. 10, 1772, and in 
the fall of 1793, married Susannah, daughter of Matthew 
McAffee, of Bedford, and settled on the farm he now lives on, 
and has had four children. 

Asenath, daughter of Thomas, married Stephen Kendrick, 
of Nashville, and has had four children; Franklin, left in 
March, 1849, for California. Susan, Asenath, and Sarah 
remain at home. 

Sally, daughter of Thomas, married Caleb Kendrick, both 
dead ; left one son, Caleb Chandler Kendrick, now in the 
Sophomore class, Dartmouth College. 

Hannah married Rufus Kendrick, merchant, of Boston, 
and had four children, two sons and two daughters, — 
Thomas and Byron, Frances and Mary Augusta. Frances 
married a Mr. Freeman, merchant, of Boston. Hannah, the 
mother, died 1850. 

Adam, only son of Thomas, was married to Sally McAl- 
laster. They have had three sons and one daughter. The 
two oldest sons, Henry and Byron, are minors, at home. 
The youngest, John, is now, Oct. 1850, in the Freshman class 
in Dartmouth College. The daughter, Sally, died, Feb. 1842, 
aged two years and eight months. 

Samuel, the second son of Zachariah, was born May 28, 
1774, and married Margaret Orr, oldest daughter of Hon. 
John Orr, Nov. 1800. He has always lived on the homestead, 
part of the original grant of Bedford. He has had seven 


children, one of whom died in infancy. Three daughters 
and three sons lived to mature age. 

Mary Jane married, in 1825, Rev. Cyrus Downs, and set- 
tled in Canajoharie, N. Y. He died in Feb. 1827. She then 
married Rev. David P. Smith, in July, 1828, who was settled 
in Greenfield in this state, and died Oct. 1st, 1850. 

Annis married Franklin Moore, Esq., Sept. 2, 1830, and 
moved to Detroit, Michigan. 

Catharine married John Adams, of Newfield, Maine, Dec. 
1837. They moved to Bedford, Feb. 1841. She died Feb. 
21, 1849, aged forty, leaving one son, now ten years old. 

Samuel, jr., was born July 5, 1811; entered Dartmouth 
College, Sept. 1830. In 1833, he took up his connection, 
and went to Union College, Schenectady. His appointment 
for commencement, in 1834, was an English Oration, which 
he was unable to perform, by reason of sickness. He was 
taken with a lung fever, in May, 1834, and came home the 
first of June. In September, he went with his brother and 
sister to Detroit, in the hope of a better climate, which was 
delusive. He gradually declined, until March 21, 1835, when 
he died at Detroit, where his remains now are. 

Zacharias, was born Dec. 10, 1813. In September, 1833, 
he removed to Detroit, Michigan, where he still resides. He 
married, Dec. 10, 1843, Letitia Grace, daughter of George 
Douglas, Esq.. of New York City. They have only one 
child living. 

John Orr, was born January 1, 1816 ; entered Dartmouth 
College, Sept. 1832 ; graduated in 1836, and entered the 
Andover Theological Seminary, at the fall term of the same 
year. He returned home in the Spring of 1837, out of health 
with weakness of the lungs, and went in September, the same 
year, to Detroit. Still declining, he left, in November, for 
Cuba, by way of the Mississippi River, and New Orleans. 
He stopped a short time at Havana ; thence went to Matan- 
zas ; thence to Limonare, about twelve miles from the city, 
where for a short time, he seemed to revive. But his disorder 
was too firmly seated to be removed. In the fall of 1838, 
he began to decline rapidly, and died in January, 1839. 
Dying in a Catholic country, he was denied Christian burial, 
and his remains were buried on the plantation. They were 
disinterred, and removed to Bedford, in the winter of 1842, 
and kindly offered a resting-place in the tomb of Dr. Wood- 
bury, where they still remain. 


Sarah, the only daughter of second Zachariah, still owns 
and occupies the house and garden of her father. 

The following document is annexed as illustrative of the 
history of the times : 

"Boston, Nov. 11, 1740. 

" Received of Mr. Zechariah Chandler, one hundred and 
ten pounds, in full, for a Negro Boy, sold and delivered him 
for my master, John Jones. 

£110. Wm. Merchant, Jun'r. 

[Another Family.] 

CHANDLER. Elijah Chandler, born in Duxbury, Mass., 
married Eunice Washburn, of Kingston, and removed in 1785, 
to Plymouth. In 1793, he came to Londonderry, and in 1S02, 
to Bedford, where he settled on the farm now occupied by 
Brooks Shattuck. Dea. Chandler died 1S31, aged So, and his 
wife a short time after, aged 86. They had children, — Abi- 
gail, Deborah, Elijah, Betsey, William, Eunice and Sally. 

Deborah, daughter of Elijah, married George Rider, who 
is supposed to have been lost at sea. They had a large 
family. She was again married, to Isaac Atwood. • 

Betsey married Isaac Atwood, and had 9 children. 

William, married Sophia Shepard ; for his second wife, 
Rebecca Cobb. In 1838, he removed to Nashua, with a large 
family, who have been generally employed in the cotton mills. 
One of them, Bradford, a fine lad of 17, lost his life, instan- 
taneously, by a heavy weight falling from an upper loft 
directly upon his head. 

DARRAH. Robert Darrah born in the north of Ireland, 
came to this country about 1738, settled in Litchfield, mar- 
ried Miss J. McKean, and had children, — Elizabeth, Robert, 
John, James, Polly, Peggy, Jane and Naomi. His wife dying, 
he married Miss Blood, and had children, David and Samuel. 

James, son of Robert, born in Litchfield, 1754, settled 
in Bedford, married Miss S. Kidder, and had children, — 
Sarah, Jane, James, John, Robert, Isaac, Sarah. Polly, and 
Thomas M. 

James, son of James, married Submit, daughter of Isaac 
Atwood. [See Atwood.] 


Isaac, son of first James, born in Merrimac, 1786, settled 
in Bedford, married Miss R. Watts, and had children, — Isaac 
W., Martha W., Mary A., Sarah S., John S., Rufus T., 
Wingate M., Calista J., and Juliet. 

John, son of first James, born in Merrimac, 1782, settled 
in Hollis, Maine, married Miss E. Lane, and had children, — 
James, Sarah K., William, John, Eliza, Joseph G., and Daniel. 
John, the father, was drowned in Saco River, Maine, in 
May, 1821. 

Robert K., son of first James, was born in Bedford, July 
28, 1784, married Polly, daughter of second James Walker, 
and had children, — Atmer C, Jane W., James W., Albert, 
and Benjamin F- 

The daughters of first James, married, one of them, Job 
Bailey of Merrimac, another, Adam Smith of Merrimac, and 
the other, Daniel Watts of Londonderry, and all had children. 

James, second, had ten daughters, all married, and all now 
living, except one, — Sarah, Clarissa, Esther, Nancy, Ismena, 
Mary, Lucy F., Lucinda, Adaline and Pelilah. He had two 
sons, of whom James lives on the homestead, having for his 
second wife, Cynthia, daughter of the late George O. Wal- 
lace. John, the other, is married, and lives at the west. 

Martha W., daughter of Isaac, married Edson Warriner, 
and has had children, — Clarene, Ella, and Emma, who died. 

Mary Ann, daughter of Isaac, married Stephen Webster, 
and had one child, Herman. Both the sisters reside in 
Concord, N. H. 

Albert C, son of Robert K., born Dec. 22, 1810, married 
Sarah K. McAfee, and had children, George and Albert. 

Jane W., daughter of Robert K., married James Parker, 

DOLE, or McDOLE. Stephen Dole, born, as supposed, 
in Scotland, came to this country at an early period. 

Richard, son of the above, born in Newbury, or Rowley, 
married Susannah Noyes, by whom he had five children, 
Elizabeth, Stephen, Jane, Silas and Enoch. 

Col. Stephen, son of Richard, married Abigail Illsley, in 
1773. He was a ship-carpenter. In 1777, he moved from 
Newbury to Londonderry, and after living there two years, 
removed to Bedford. He had nine children, — Richard, born 


1774, William, 177S, Jane, Joseph G., Enoch, Anna, Friend, 
Betsey and Sally ; dates of their birth, not remembered. 

Richard, son of Col. Stephen, married Betsey Johnson in 
1798. They had children, — Louisa, Eleazer, Abigail, 
Joseph, Richard and William. For a number of years, he 
carried on the wool-carding and cloth-dressing business, near 
his residence on the river road, but the multiplication of cot- 
ton and woolen mills, has for some time superseded the neces- 
sity of these minor operations. The whole family have 
lately removed to Wisconsin, and now reside at Beloit, on 
Rock River. 

William, Enoch, and Friend, sons of Col. Stephen, have 
removed to the West. 

Jane, daughter of Col. Stephen, married Joseph Colley, 

Anna, daughter of Col. Stephen, married James Riddle, and 
after his death, William Riddle. 

Betsey, daughter of Col. Stephen, married Mr. Chamberlain 
of Merrimac. 

Sally, daughter of Col. Stephen, married Matthew Riddle. 
Of these families, some have died, most of them have re- 
moved to the West, and a very few of the younger branches 
remain in Bedford. 

Silas, son of first Richard, and brother of Col. Stephen, 
after some 20 years residence here, removed, in 1804, with 
his family, to Danville, Vt., where some of his descendants 
still live. His children were, Judith, Moses, Susan, Samuel 
G., Mary, Stephen, Abigail, Eleazer J., and Betsey. 

[For more about the ancestors of this family, see Coffin's 
history of Newbury.] 

FERGUSON. John Ferguson emigrated from Scotland 
to this country, in 1725, and settled in Pelham, N. H. He 
was one of the early settlers of the town, by occupation a 
farmer, and was a large land-holder. Had three sons, — 
William, David and John. The two first settled in New 

John, son of the above, settled in Pelham, on the estate of 
his father ; married Jane Moore, of Londonderry, and had 
seven children. 

John, son of the above, born Aug. 11, 1757 ; married Ann 


Gage, of Pelham ; settled on the homestead ; had ten chil- 
dren. — Jane, John, Nancy, Nathaniel, Jonathan, Sarah, 
Daniel, George, Franklin and James. April, 1775. he entered 
the Revolutionary army ; was at the Battle of Bunker Hill, 
not eighteen years old ; also, at the Battle of Bennington, and 
was subsequently stationed at Peekskill and Fishkill, on the 
Hudson. He continued to reside at Pelham, where he was a 
prominent and enterprising citizen, and commanded a com- 
pany of cavalry. He lived a short time at Dunbarton, and 
in 1830 moved to Bedford, where he lived till his death, in 
1846. His age was 88. 

John, son of the above, married Peggy Mills, of Dunbar- 
ton, and moved to Bedford in 1828, where he lived till his 
death, leaving one son, Thomas Mills. 

Sarah, married William P. Riddle. 

Daniel, born 1797 ; married Susan Morse, Bolton, Mass. ; 
moved to Bedford, 1830 ; has four children, — Susan Jane, 
Nancy, Mary and John. 

FRENCH. William French came to New England as 
early as 1635 ; admitted freeman, 1636, and settled in Cam- 
bridge, whence he went to Billerica with the first settlers ; 
was a Lieutenant ; appointed to solemnize marriage, and was 
the first representative in 1660, and again in 1663. 

William, descendant of the above, removed from Billerica 
to Hollis, N. H., about the time of the Revolutionary war; 
afterwards to Bedford, N. H., where he died. 

Jonathan, son of William, settled and died in Billerica. 

William, son of William, removed from Hollis to Bedford, 
and died there ; none of his family in Bedford. 

Nehemiah, son of William, and brother of the last, first 
settled in Hollis, afterwards removed to Lyndeborough, N. 
H., thence to Vermont, and there died. 

Epliraim, son of William, settled and died in Amherst. 

Mehitabel, daughter of William, married Job Bailey, of 
Wilton, N. H., and there died. 

Betsy, daughter of William, married Daniel Bailey, of 
Hollis, and died there ; her sister (not named) married a 
Mr. Carlton, of Billerica, and there died. 

Benjamin, son of William, tanner by trade, first settled in 


Dracut, Mass., afterwards removed to Milford, N. H., where 
he died. 

Joseph, son of William, settled and died in Hollis. 

Stephen, son of William, tanner by trade, married Dolly 
Coburn, of Dracut, Mass., and removed to Bedford about 
1773. They had children, eight sons and six daughters. 

Ebenezer, son of Stephen and Dolly French, born April 
28, 1774 ; selectman and representative ; married Rhoda 
Coburn, of Dracut ; born April 16, 1780. Mr. F. was a 
farmer ; settled in the west part of Bedford, and died Nov. 
20, 1846, aged 72. They had children, viz. : 

Ebenezer C, son of Ebenezer, born Dec. 22, 1798 ; set- 
tled on a part of the old homestead, west part of Bedford ; 
married Sarah, daughter of Dea. John Holbrook, Bedford ; 
she was born 1798. They had children, — Alfred, physician 
in Manchester, born Jan. 16, 1823, and Sarah E., born Feb. 
11, 1826, who married Stephen G. Allen, merchant of Boston, 
where she resides. Mrs. F. died Sept., 1834. He married 
Lydia Eaton, Goffstown, born July 5, 1799. They had 
children, — Abigail E., June 30, 1838; Clarissa R., Sept. 29, 
1839 ; Lydia M., Oct. 14, 1842. 

Matilda C, daughter of Ebenezer, born Aug. 25, 1800 ; 
married Ebenezer Holbrook, Bedford, where they now reside. 
Mr. Holbrook was born May 23, 1796. They had children, 
— David G., Nov. 18, 1819; Maria G., March 10, 1822; 
John, June 13, 1829. 

Leonard C., 2d., son of Ebenezer, born April 19, 1803 ; 
farmer, selectman, representative, and justice of the peace ; 
married Annis C. Campbell, New Boston, June 1, 1831 ; born 
July 9, 1809. They had children, — Clinton, Oct. 24, 1832 ; 
Almira F., May 1, 1835 ; William C, Dec. 18, 1838 ; Robert 
C, Jan. 2, 1845. 

Phineas C, 2d, son of Ebenezer, born Aug. 19, 1805 ; 
farmer ; married Sophronia Robie, Goffstown ; born June 17, 
1809. They had children, — Achsah W., July 29, 1836; 
Martin, Feb. 7, 1841; Mary E., March 15, 1844; Louisa, 
March 29, 1847; Sarah E., May 12, 1849. 

William, son of Ebenezer, born Dec. 29, 1807 ; merchant ; 
married Isabella, daughter of Robert Wallace, New Boston ; 
settled at Piscataquog ; selectman.' They had children, — 
Josephine and Ella W. 

Merab, daughter of Ebenezer, born Sept. 27, 1811 ; mar- 
ried John McAllister, Jr., Bedford, and had John Gilman. 


John U., son of Ebenezer, born Feb. 24, 1817; married 
Sarah R. Parker, Bedford ; born Oct. 6, 1826. They had 
children, —Anna M., July 5, 1847 ; Willard P., Feb. 25, 1849. 

Mary A., daughter of Ebenezer, born Oct. 4, 1824; 
married John N. Barr, Bedford, and had John Henry. They 
reside in Nashville. 

Rhoda, daughter of Ebenezer, born Sept. 24, 1822 ; mar- 
ried Eldridge Barr, and had Ada Lizzy Oct. 5, 1849. 

Adaline, daughter of Ebenezer, born Feb. 2, 1826 ; mar- 
ried Thomas U. Gage, Bedford. 

Stephen, son of Stephen and Dolly, tanner, born Nov. 7 S 
1775, died Sept. 4, 1850 ; married Hannah Swett, 1800, 
of Bedford ; born May 15, 1777. They had children. 

Hannah P., born April 20, 1801 ; married Ebenezer Goffe, 
of Millbury, [See Goffe] Mass. ; settled there and died, leav- 
ing children. 

Dolly C., daughter of second Stephen, born Oct. 4, 1803 ; 
died, unmarried, July, 1826. 

Sarah W., daughter of second Stephen, born Dec. 4, 1804 ; 
married Josiah Kittredge, M. D., of Nashua, where she died, 
leaving children. 

Stephen, son of second Stephen, born Aug. 26, 1806 ; mar- 
ried Sarah S., daughter of Dr. Samuel Foster, of Candia, N. 
H. ; born June 5, 1812 ; lived in Nashua when married. 
They have, — Benj. F., born March 12, 1833 ; Ellen B., 
Jan. 13, 1835 ; Elia N., Nov. 28, 1836 ; Mary O., Oct. 30, 
1838 ; died 1841 ; Sarah E., Sept. 6, 1840 ; Robert H., Dec. 
2, 1842; James E., Dec. 15, 1844; Harriet A., April 19, 

Alary J., daughter of second Stephen, born July 12, 1808 ; 
married Humphrey Moore, D. D., Milford, N. H., where they 
now reside. 

Phineas, son of second Stephen, deacon, born May 23, 
1810 ; Feb. 16, 1836, married Betsy Foster, of Nashua; born 
July 6, 1811; died May 14, 1839. They had children,— 
Horace, Feb. 16, 1837; Charles F., May 6, 1839. He mar- 
ried, as his second wife, Lydia G. Hardy, Concord, Sept. 3, 
1840; born June 2, 1813; died April 9, 1850, leaving chil- 
dren, — Austin G., Aug. 30, 1845; Hannah E., March 19, 
1847 ; Lydia F., Nov. 17, 1849. 

Betsy, daughter of second Stephen, born April 27, 1812; 
married Thomas Gillis, Agent Nashua Man. Co., where she 
now resides, having children. 



James, son of second Stephen, born March 21, 1814 ; 
died, 1826. 

Moses, son of second Stephen, born Sept. 19, 1817; mar- 
ried Sarah Gregg ; settled in Nashua ; now resides at Milford. 

Dolly, daughter of first Stephen, born Nov. 9, 1778 ; mar- 
ried Gawn Riddle, [See Riddle] by whom she had children. 

Asenath, married Thomas Holbrook, died 1845. 

Nancy, married Gregg Campbell, died Jan. 31, 1837. 

Albert, married Sarah Wheeler, Merrimac, Nov. 26, 1835. 
They have children, and reside in Amherst. 

William, son of first Stephen, born March 20, 1780 ; mar- 
ried Nancy Riddle, [See Riddle] born Jan. 5, 1781 ; settled 
in Prospect, Me. ; died 1847, leaving children, — James R., 
Sarah Ann, William R., John, Dolly, Robert, Mary, Nancy. 

Sarah W., daughter of first Stephen, born April 10, 1782 ; 
married Wm. McD. Ferson, Bedford, and had children, — 
Dolly, James, Stephen, Sarah Ann, Nancy Jane, William, 
John, Louisa, Caroline, Asenath. 

Leonard C., son of first Stephen, born Feb. 10, 1785 ; 
selectman, treasurer, representative ; married, Jan. 26, 1S08, 
Nancy Hutchinson, Merrimac ; born April 20, 1787. They 
had children, — viz. 

Margaret Ann, daughter of Leonard C, born April 17, 
1809 ; married Frederic Wallace, Bedford, Jan. 30, 1832, and 
had children, — Nancy, Margaret Ann, Frederic C, Selwin 
and Nancy Ann , resides in Manchester. Mr. W. died, 1849 

Nancy, daughter of Leonard C, born June 4, 1811 ; mar- 
ried, Sept. 13, 1832, J. R. French, of Prospect, Me., since 
minister in Peterborough, N. H. They had children, — 
Lucius T., born in Bedford, George W., Gilmanton, Austin 
B., James and Wm. H., Peterborough. Mrs. F. died 1848. 

William R., son of Leonard C, born June 29, 1814 ; June 
10, 1841, married Sally D. Riddle. They have had chil- 
dren, — James, William and George ; William, born and died 
in Milford; Maitland R., born in Bedford. 

Leonard, son of Leonard C, born Nov. 11, 1817 ; gradu- 
ated at Dartmouth College. 1843 ; studied medicine ; married 
Sarah M. Melville, Nelson, N. H., May 28, 1846 ; settled in 
Ashby, Mass. They have one child, Leonard M. Mrs. 
French died in 1849. 

Susan Jane, daughter of Leonard C, born Oct. 8, 1820 ; 
Dec. 20, 1842, married David J. Clark, Esq., Stratham, now 
residing in Manchester, in the profession of law. They have 
one child, Susan Elizabeth. 


Sarah F., daughter of Leonard C, born Nov. 18, 1823; 
Jan. 16, 1849, married David Stevens, Jr., Bedford ; settled 
in Nashua. They had one child, Edward J., Jan. 7, 1850. 

Frederic F., son of Leonard C, born Jan. 20, 1827. 

Freeman R., son of Leonard C, born Aug. 4, 1831. 

Betsy, daughter of first Stephen, born April 28, 1789 ; 
Feb. 12, 1807, married Wm. Bursiel, Bedford, by whom she 
had children, —Mary N., born Feb. 13, 1808; Thomas, 
Oct. 18, 1809; Dolly F., Jan. 7, 1812; Nancy, Sept. 13, 
1814; William, Feb. 22, 1816; Leonard, May 14, 1818; 
Eliphalet, July 28, 1820; James, Aug. 13, 1822; Eliza J., 
Nov. 15, 1824 ; Abby C, July 4, 1S28. 

Phineas C, son of first Stephen, born Dec. 14, 1791 ; 
settled in Bedford ; married Hannah Cutler, born March 13, 
1792, died 1845. They had children, — Elizabeth, born 
Dec, 1814, died 1845; Alfred, March, 1816, died 1845; 
Frederic, May, 1818, died ; Charles, March, 1821, died 1849 ; 
Mary E., Feb., 1824, died; Dolly C, Oct., 1827; Nancy J., 
Dec. 1829; Frederic B., Dec, 1831; Humphrey M., Feb., 
1834. April 8, 1847, he married, as his second wife, Mary 
Patten, of Pepperell, Mass. 

James, son of first Stephen, born Nov. 22, 1794 ; tanner ; 
settled in Bedford ; unmarried. 

Daniel, son of first Stephen, born Jan 28, 1796, married 
Polly Riddle, Bedford, 1820. He settled on the homestead, 
was elected elder, afterwards studied for the ministry, and 
settled in Nelson, N. H., where he still remains. They had 

Hugh R., son of Daniel, born Sept. 17, 1821, married 
Mary J., daughter of Thomas Shepard, of Bedford, in Octo- 
ber, 1842. She was born Nov. 9, 1820. They have, George 
M., born Jan. 16, 1846. 

Jane E., daughter of Daniel, married Mr. Heald, and 
resides in Ohio. 

Silas and Edward P., are sons of Daniel. 

Robert W., son of first Stephen, born October 31, 1801, 
married Harriet Parker of Merrimac, in 1832. She was born 
June 23, 1802. They now reside in Merrimac, and have 
children, — Harriet A., born Feb. 1, 1833; Elmira, Oct. 11, 
1834 ; Antoinette, Oct. 22, 1836 ; Miron W., July 20, 1838 ; 
Edmund P., July 24, 1840; Allen L., May 14, 1842; Laurietta 
and Marietta, twins, March 19, 1845; Charles A., March 
9, 1847. 


David, son of William French, who came from Billerica to 
Hollis, was brother of first Stephen, moved from Hollis to 
Bedford, Feb., 1782, married Lydia, daughter of Josiah Par- 
ker, of Hollis, and was a soldier of the Revolution. He died 
June 13, 1790, and his wife, April 8, 1793, aged thirty-five. 
They had children as follows. 

David, born Aug. 13, 1778, died in Amherst, aged 18. 
Josiah, born Feb 13, 17S0, married Judith Marstin, of 
Tewksbury, Mass., settled in Rumney, N. H., and had chil- 
dren, — Betsey Parker, Clinton, Parmelia, Samuel, Emeline, 
John and Charles. 

John, born Dec. 31, 1781, married Ama. daughter of Joseph 
Nevens of Hollis, March 22, 1810. He was an elder in the 
church, and representative ; also, 1850, member of the Con- 
vention for revising the Constitution of the State. He had 
children, — Ama, born April 18, 1811, died Aug. 20, 1827; 
Almira, born Feb. 22, 1813, died March 9, 1835 ; Lucy, April 
14, 1815; Harriet N., Feb. 16, 1817; Catharine, April 28, 
1819 ; Mary Ann, Feb. 22, 1821 ; John Orr, March 20, 1823, 
died Oct. 5, 1826 ; David, born May 25, 1825, died Oct. 25, 
1826 ; John, Oct. 15, 1827 ; David B., Jan, 27, 1830 ; Ama N., 
Aug. 18, 1832. Ama, wife of Dea. John, died Oct. 28, 
1838, in her 50th year. For his second wife, he married 
Sally Mclntire, of Goffstown, Aug. 28, 1844 ; she was 
daughter of Lieut. Robert Campbell, of New Boston, a 
Revolutionary soldier. 

Catharine, daughter of Dea. John, married William A. 
Burke, of Lowell, June 6, 1837. They have two children, 
Catharine, and William French. 

Mary Ann, daughter of Dea. John, married Dan K. 
Mack, of Bedford, Jan. 20, 1S46, has one child, Harriet Ann. 
Lydia, daughter of David, of Hollis, born May 24, 1784, 
married Lester Holt, of Lyme, N. H., and had children, 
David, Lydia, Hannah, Parker, Alma, Mary, Charles, Newton. 
Harvey, Freeman and Olive. 

Hannah, daughter of David, of Hollis, born Feb. 28, 
17S6, married Israel H. Goodridge, Esq., of Lyndeborough, 
and had two sons, Israel and James. 
Isaac, son of David, died 1790. 

Isaac P., son of David, of Hollis, born Oct 8, 1790, married 
Clarissa, daughter of Capt. Nathan Barnes. They now reside 
in Danvers, Mass. They have three sons, David, a clergyman, 
George, a merchant, and Charles, a physician. 


GAGE. Aaron Gage came from Bradford, Mass., to 
Merrimac, in 1773. 

Aaron, son of the above, married Martha Stevens of Ando- 
ver, and had ten children, all living to maturity. He was a 
deacon in Dr. Burnap's church. 

Benjamin, son of second Aaron, married Miss Nichols, and 
after her death, Annis Moore ; had children by both wives, 
who are living in different parts of the country, one only, 
Mrs. Oliver Kendall, remaining in Bedford. Benjamin died 
in 1838. 

Hannah, daughter of second Aaron, married Dea. William 
Moore ; she is now a widow, living in Merrimac. 

Aaron, son of second Aaron, is living, single, in Merrimac. 

Solomon, son of second Aaron, married Dolly Chase, of 
Litchfield, Dec. 29, 1807, and have had thirteen children. 
Mrs. Gage is daughter of the late Lieut. Joseph Chase, of 
Litchfield, and grand-daughter of Francis Chase, the first 
Baptist immersed in New Hampshire. 

Isaac, married Miss Ingalls, of Merrimac, and after her 
death, Jane Patten of Bedford. Two of the first wife's 
children survive, and four of the second. 

Of the other children of second Aaron, Mrs. Muzzy and 
Mary, only, are now living. 

GOFFE. John Goffe came over from England, with two 
brothers, 1662, or '63. In what relation he stood to William, 
the regicide, or whether any, is matter of doubt. The name 
is found very early in the annals of Salem, and it is probable 
there was an affinity, between them, though the degree, it is 
impossible at this distance of time, accurately to determine. 

John, son of John, removed from Boston to Londonderry, 
early in the last century, and died in 1748. His wife's name 
was Hannah Parish. 

John, son of second John, born in 1701, married Hannah 
Griggs. He died, Oct. 20, 1781. 

John, (Major) son of third John, married Jemima Holden, 
Groton, Mass., in 1749. 

Samuel, son of fourth John, Maj. Goffe, settled in Goffs- 
town, and lived there a number of years ; then moved to 
Homer, N. Y., where he died, aged 93. 


Hannah, daughter of Maj. Goffe, married Richard Hawes, 
and settled in Maine ; lived there a number of years, and had 
three children. She returned to Bedford, and died in Nashua, 
at the age of 87. 

John, son of Maj. Goffe, settled in Derryfield, Manchester, 
and lived there some years ; then moved to New York, where 
he died at the age of 92. 

Susannah, daughter of Maj. Goffe, married John Griffin ; 
lived in Manchester, and was drowned in the Merrimac river, 
at the age of 28. 

Stephen, son of the Major, engaged in privateering at the 
time of the Revolution ; never after heard of. 

William, son of the Major, entered the Revolutionary ser- 
vice, and was killed at the battle of Stillwater. 

Joseph, son of the Major, was a minister of the gospel ; he 
settled in Millbury, Mass., where he died, aged 79. 

Theodore, son of the Major, settled in Bedford, on his 
father's farm, and is now living, in his 82d year. 

Polly, daughter of the Major, married a Mr. Wallace, and 
settled in Bedford ; afterwards in Antrim, where she is now 
living, in her 80th year. 

Esther, daughter of the Major, married Samuel Grigg, and 
settled in Homer, N. Y., where she died at the age of 67. 

John, son of Theodore, married Jane Riddle, and settled 
in Bedford. They have had children, — Martha J., George 
W., Nancy M., Eliza A., Margaret R., and Ann E. 

Gilbert, son of Theodore, went to the State of Alabama, 
where he died, unmarried, at the age of 23. 

Stephen, son of Theodore, married Mary Cutler, and had 
children, — Gilbert, Theodore, Mary Frances, Nathan and 
Stephen. He died July, 1836, aged 33. 

Nancy, daughter of Theodore, married John A. McGaw, 
and had children, Harriet, Hannah, Thornton, Helen and 
Frances Eliza. They now live in New York City. 

Eliza, daughter of Theodore, married John Parker, and 
settled in Bedford. [ See Parker family.] 

William, son of Theodore, married Clarissa Labaree, and 
had children, Harriet F., Charles H., and John L. He mar- 
ried a second wife, Betsey Riddle and had children, — Mary, 
A. and Louis K. They reside in the state of Wisconsin. 
Nathan, son of Theodore, is a physician in Louisiana. 
Joseph, son of Maj. Goffe, married Elizabeth Waters, of Sut- 
ton, Mass., Dec. 20, 1796, and had children, — Ebenezer W., 


born April 23, 1799 ; Maria, Feb. 1, 1802, died Feb. 13, 
1837; Joseph, Sept. 29, 1804; Eliza, Feb. 21, 1808; Phi- 
lena, April 8, 1801. Joseph, the father, died April 24, 
1846 ; his wife died Jan. 26, 1839, aged 68. 

Ebenezer W., son of Joseph, married Hannah P. French, 
of Bedford, N. H., by whom he had children, — Elizabeth 
W. and Hannah F. His wife died Dec. 13, 1847. 

Joseph, son of Joseph, graduated at Amherst College, 
1826 ; married Almira C. Hepburn, of Vt., 1840 ; had two 
children, — Mary E. and Josephine M. He died in Mont- 
gomery, Ala., Aug. 13, 1847. 

Philena, daughter of first Joseph, married Silas Goddard, 
of Millbury, Mass., May, 1837. Had one child, — Mary E. 3 
born July 19, 1840, died May 24, 1848. 

GORDON. Nathaniel Gordon, born in the County of 
Tyrone, Ireland, a farmer by occupation, of Scotch Presby- 
terian descent, intended to settle in Virginia, where there 
was an elder brother, but the vessel in which he sailed was 
obliged to put into Boston. He married, in Ireland, Sarah 
Martin, and had four children, — John, Samuel, Elizabeth 
and Hannah. He settled in Shirley, Mass., 1742, and died 
in Peterborough, N. H., about 1789, aged 83. 

John, son of Nathaniel, married, 1762, Mary Campbell, of 
Townsend, Mass. ; came to Bedford, about 1774, and pur- 
chased of his brother, Samuel, a fifty acre lot, which is part 
of the Gordon farm, so called. He had fourteen children, — 
Josiah, Elizabeth, Nathaniel, Anna, Mary, Samuel, (Daniel 
and James died in infancy,) Sally, James, William, Robert, 
Rebecca W. and Daniel. 

Josiah, son of John, married, May, 1792, Jane, the young- 
est daughter of Dea. Robert Walker; had four children, — 
Adam. Hannah, (died in infancy,) Eliza and Jane. 

Adam, son of Josiah, graduated at Dartmouth College, 
1817; studied law at Cambridge ; settled in Pensacola ; re- 
moved to Key West, Florida ; he married, Oct., 1825, Eliza, 
daughter of Joseph W. Page, by whom he had nine children, 
three of whom (Joseph W., Martha J. and Ann E.) died in 
infancy ; Josiah, in California ; George, in Yale College ; and 
Eliza J., Charles C, Oliver E. and Florian W., now reside 
with their parents, at New Haven. Conn, 


Eliza B., daughter of Josiah and Jane, married P. P. 
Woodbury, M. D., of Bedford, Oct 25, 1832, and had four 
children. [See Woodbury.] 

Jane, daughter of Josiah, now lives on the homestead. 

Elizabeth, eldest daughter of John and Mary, married 
Jonathan Bailey, and had six children, — Daniel, Sarah, 
Eliza, John G., Gilman, Sophronia and Jno., all dead but 
Eliza. Lived and died at Charlestown, Mass. 

Nathaniel, son of John and Mary, married Mille Rand. 
[See Rand.] Died 1827. Had five children, — Alfred, Sa- 
rah, Nancy, Emily and Mary. 

Alfred, son of Nathaniel, married Mary Jones, and went to 

Sarah, daughter of Nathaniel, married Enos Reed, of East 
Cambridge, Mass., and had seven children. 

Nancy, married Robert Walker ; settled and died at Illi- 
nois ; had four children. [See Walker.] 

Mary married John Nichols, and settled in Illinois. Had 
nine children. 

Emily, married Mr. Prentiss ; had one child, and died at 
Billerica, 1841. 

Anna, daughter of John and Mary, married Robert Rand, 
and had ten children. He died in the war of 1812. She 
married, as her second husband, Joseph Bailey, of Hillsbor- 
ough, by whom she had two children, — Josiah G. and Ann 

Mary, daughter of John and Mary, married Oliver Newell, 
and had four children, — Nancy, John, James and Oliver. 
He died in the West Indies, 1802 ; she died, 1848. 

Samuel, son of John and Mary, married Isabella McPher- 
son, had children, removed to Hillsborough, thence to 
Stockbridge, Oneida County, N. Y. 

James, son of John and Mary, married Elizabeth West, 
Belfast, Me.; had two daughters, viz., Mary and Sophronia; 
lives in Boston. 

Sally, daughter of John and Mary, married Cotton Eaton, 
of Goffstown, and had twelve children ; moved to Maine. 

William, son of John and Mary, graduated at Dartmouth 
College, 1S11 ; entered the practice of law at Charlestown, 
Mass., where he died, 1835, of inflammation of the lungs, in 
consequence of an injury from a passing carriage, while hand- 
ing a letter to a stage-driver. 

Robert, son of John and Mary, married Elizabeth Carlisle, 


of Brighton ; had two sons, — Robert and George ; died 
1824. His son Robert, in California, graduated at College, 
1844 ; George graduated at West Point, 1S45 ; was in the 
Mexican War, under Gen. Scott ; was in all his battles, and 
was wounded while escorting a train to Vera Cruz. 

Rebecca, daughter of John and Mary, married Wm. Reed, 
of Boston ; had five sons and two daughters. 

Daniel, youngest son of John and Mary, married Louisa 
Dole, Feb., 1825, and had five children, — Elizabeth D., 
Mary J., Louisa D., John B. and Richard D. The family 
removed to Beloit, Wisconsin, 1845. 

Samuel, son of Nathaniel that came over, and brother of 
John, married Eleanor Mitchel, of Shirley, Mass., who was 
born in Limerick County, Ireland, and came to this country 
at the age of six. They had thirteen children, — Samuel, 
Sarah, Elizabeth, Hannah, Nathaniel, Eleanor, Jane, Mary, 
Nehemiah, John and Nancy. Two died in infancy. 

Elizabeth, daughter of Samuel, married John Bell, and 
died in childbed. 

Hannah, daughter of Samuel, married Ephraim Smith, a 
Revolutionary soldier, and had children. 

HALL. The earliest record of the name in New England 
is 1634, when John Hall, of Lynn, was admitted freeman ; 
Robert, of Boston, blacksmith, was a member of the church 
at that time ; six others were admitted prior to 1650. The 
Halls became residents of Billerica after 1750, and in 1826 
were extinct in that town. 

Samuel, probably grandson of Samuel, who in 163S was 
member of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, 
was of Billerica, and married Hannah Kittredge, Jan. 25, 
1727. Record shows he had a son, born March 28, 1747, 
who died Oct. 31, 1749. His wife, Hannah, died July 21, 
1750. He married again, April 24, 1751, Hannah Saunders, 
of Tewksbury. 

Thomas, supposed to be son of Samuel, was of Billerica ; 
married, April 15, 1761, Lydia Keyes, by whom he had two 
sons and four daughters ; he died May 10, 1772 ; his widow 
married Samson Crosby, moved to Milford, N. H., had one 
daughter, and died 1836, aged 94. 

Nathan, son of Thomas, bom Aug. 6, 1767 ; about 1790, 



married Ruth, daughter of Peres and Abigail Waterman 
Oakham, Mass., who by her father was a lineal descendant 
from the Plymouth pilgrim of that name. Nathan was a 
blacksmith ; he used to relate that when apprenticed to the 
trade, he has many a time gone in from the shop, and eaten 
for supper brown bread and milk, by count, just fourteen 
spoonsful, then returned and worked till 9 o'clock. He died 
Oct. 23, 1812; his wife died Jan. 12, 1815. 

Benjamin, son of Nathan, born in Milford, N. H., Sept. 
17, 1812; youngest of the family. There were nine chil- 
dren, four sons and five daughters, all married and living in 
New Hampshire, in 1837, but at this date, (1S50) three are 
dead. Benjamin, married Sarah M., daughter of Isaac At- 
wood, Bedford, April 13, 1836, and had children, — Benj. 
Orland, Aug. 15, 1837; Sarah E., May 21, 1839; Philo E., 
Feb. 22, 1848; Clara E., July 8, 1S50, and died 21st same 
month. Mr. Hall became a permanent resident of this town 
Nov., 1848, and is now on the farm owned, cleared and occupied 
by Isaac At wood and father for seventy-one years. He is 
the only man of the name in the town. 

HOGG. Joseph Hogg, born in Ireland, settled in Lon- 
donderry, N. H., married, and had children, — Thomas, 
James, William, Hugh, Agnes, Mary and Sarah. 

William, son of the above, born in Londonderry, Oct. 10, 
1770 ; came to this town, and married Rachel, daughter of 
Samuel Moore ; had his name changed to Moore ; he had 
children, — Hugh, Joseph, Stephen, Polly, Achsah, Louisa, 
Margaret, Rebecca, Sarah J. and Rachel. 

Hugh, son of the above, married and lived in Merrimac. 

Joseph, son of William, born Sept. 7, 1792, married Miss 
Richardson, and had children, — William P. R., Hugh G., 
Charles W., Louisa, Lydia M. and Margaret E. Stephen 
married Miss Hardy, and lived in Piscataquog Village. The 
daughters are some of them married and settled near, and 
some remain on the homestead. 

HOLBROOK. John Holbrook, of Roxbury, Mass., died 
1735, aged 72. 


Ralph, son of the above, married Dorothy Williams, and 
had five children. — John, Ebenezer, Polly, Elizabeth and 

John, son of Ralph, entered the army of the Revolution, 
with his brother Ebenezer, while young ; 1783, married 
Sarah Griggs, Brookline, and had children, — Polly, John, 
Ralph, Ebenezer, Sarah, Thomas G., Abiel and Joseph ; in 
1803, he moved to Bedford, where the two youngest children 
were born. 

Ralph, son of John, married Lucy Dodge, of New Boston, 
in 1824, and had children, — Sarah Annis, born Feb. 22, 
1825; Mary W.. July 7, 1827; Lucy Ann, Sept. 17, 1829; 
Lydia D., Feb. 26, 1832 ; Griggs H., June 16, 1835; Ralph, 
Jan. 14, 1838 ; Levi, Feb. 4, 1841, died May 7, 1845. 

Ebenezer*, son of John, married, March, 1819, Matilda, 
daughter of Ebenezer French, and had children, — David, 
Nov., 1819; Maria, March, 1822; John, June, 1829. 

Sarah, daughter of John, married Ebenezer C, son of 
Ebenezer French, and had children, — Alfred and Eliza- 

Thomas G., son of John, married Asenath, daughter of 
Gawn Riddle, Dec, 1826, and had children, — George, April, 
1830; James, Aug., 1832; Albert, March, 1837; Silas, Nov. 

Abiel, son of John, married Lucy Sanderson, Jan., 1833, 
and had children, — Joseph G., March 2, 1834 ; Susan, March 
12, 1838, and Horace, Feb. 3, 1841. 

i Joseph, son of John, died, from an injury received in a 
stage, in Watertown, Mass., 1833, aged 26, unmarried. 

Polly and John, the two oldest of John, were married and 
live at a distance. 

[Note.] In the possession of Ralph, of this town, is a 
silver tankard, with the inscription of his grandfather of the 
same name. 

JENNESS. Francis Jenness came from England in 
1660; had a son Richard, who was father of Nathaniel. 

John, son of Nathaniel, had a son Nathaniel, who was 
father of Thomas. 

Thomas, was born in Rye, N. H., 1774 ; married Sally 
Paige, and had children, — Fanny, Jonathan, Joseph, James, 
Simon, Polly and Abigail. 


Simon, son of the above, born in Rye. Aug. 30, 1811 ; 
married Messilvia Fox, and settled in Bedford, 1839. They 
had children, — Albert M., Simon B. and Messilvia Ann. 
First wife died 1843. Married Eliza Paige, as his second 
wife, Oct. 13, 1844, by whom he had one child, — Maria F. 

MACK. Of the ancestry of the Mack family, nothing is 
Known prior to John Mack, who married Sibella, daughter of 
Sir John Brown, emigrated to America from Londonderry, 
Ireland, previous to 1736, and settled in Londonderry, N. H. 
He died in 1753, his wife in 1770. His children were, — 
William, Jeanette, John, Robert, Martha, Elizabeth, Andrew 
and Daniel. 

Andrew, married Elizabeth Clark, and resided in London- 
derry. His children were, — Jane, Laetitia, Elizabeth, John, 
Sibella, Robert and Daniel. 

Daniel, settled in Bedford in 1812, and followed the occu- 
pation of a blacksmith. He married Sophia Kendrick, of 
Amherst. In 1836, he was elected an Elder in the Presby- 
terian Church, and has been twice chosen a Delegate from 
Londonderry Presbytery to the General Assembly of the 
Presbyterian Church in the United States. His children are, 
■ — Daniel Kendrick, Rufus Kendrick, (died 1844,) Sophia, 
Neal, (died 1827,) and Bella, (died 1841.) 

Daniel Kendrick, married Mary Ann, daughter of Dea. 
John French, of Bedford, and resides with his father. Has 
one child, — Harriet Ann. 

MANNING. William Manning came over with three 
sons, previous to 1639, as appears by the records of Cam- 
bridge, where he settled and spent his life. 

William, son of the above, lived in Cambridge, was 
chosen counsellor in 1673, and held other offices for several 
successive years. 

William, son of second William, born 1677, in Cam- 
bridge, married and settled in Billerica about 1700. He had 
children, — William, Jacob, Elizabeth, Mary, Sarah, Rachel, 
Martha and Hannah. 

Jacob, son of the above, born in Billerica, March 27, 1701, 


married Martha Beard, settled in Billerica, and had children, 
— Isaac, Thomas, David, Jacob, Daniel, Mary, Martha and 

Jacob, son of the above Jacob, settled in Billerica, married 
Hannah Butterfield, by whom he had children, — Jacob, 
Asa, Martha and Esther. He was at Concord, April 19, 1775, 
but on account of distance, did not arrive till the British had 
retreated. He was afterwards killed by falling from a load 
of hay. 

Jacob, son of the last, born in Billerica, Dec. 16, 1771, 
settled in Chelmsford, married Lucy Andrews, by whom he 
had children, — Jacob, Solomon and Lucy. He removed to 
Lyndeborough, N. H., with his family, where, in 1812, he 
died, of spotted fever, after an illness of a few hours. 

Solomon, son of last Jacob, born in Chelmsford, May 16, 
1799, settled in Bedford, married Mary Fletcher, by whom 
he had children, — Joseph, Jacob W. ; Dudley H., Solomon, 
Mary, Lucy A., Sarah J. and Harriet A. 

Joseph, son of Solomon, born in Tyngsborough, April 
23, 1824, married Miriam N. Hall, and settled in Reading, 

Mary, daughter of Solomon, born in Bedford, April 27, 
1828, married Hart well Nichols, of Reading, Mass., where 
they reside. 

This name is very numerous throughout the New England 
States and other sections of the country, and in England even 
more so than in this country, as appears from the " British 
Records," published by order of Parliament, which state that 
the name occurs in twenty-two Counties in England as 
early as 1272 ; so that, in a period of more than five and a 
half centuries, by ordinary increase, there are more than 
could be traced in a lifetime. 

McAFFEE. Matthew McAfee, born in Rochester, N. 
H. ; came to Londonderry, N. H., 1720 ; married Nancy 
Aiken, who died, leaving one child ; again married, Susan- 
nah Morrison, to whom were born William and Samuel ; 
1760, settled in Bedford, when they had children, — Mary, 
John, James, David, Matthew and Susan. 

William, son of the above, born 1758 ; married Elizabeth 
Boies, born 1762, whose parents came from Ireland and mar- 


ried in this country. William and Elizabeth McAffee had 
children, — Samuel, Anne, John, Mary, Susan and David. 

Samuel, son of William, born 1783 ; married Catharine, 
daughter of John Holmes, Londondery, born 1792 ; had 
children, — Alfred, William, Adam, John, Jane, Catharine, 
Samuel, Ira and Achsah. 

McLAUGHLIN. John McLaughlin and Mary, his wife, 
came from Ireland about 1735 ; settled in Bedford, occupying 1 
a house a little north of the Gordon house : he was first 
Town Clerk of Bedford, and had children, — John, Thomas, 
Isabella, Rosanna and Mary. Capt. Thomas married Mar- 
garet Ayers, of Derry ; he served as Ensign in Canada in 
1754, as Lieutenant at Bunker-Hill, and was knocked down 
by earth thrown up by a ball at Charlestown neck, on the 
retreat of the Americans. He moved to Maine in 1802 or 
1803, where he died, aged 84. He has descendants in Maine 
and Massachusetts. A grandson in Boston, Ephraim B. Mc- 
Laughlin, adopted the name of " Mason " for himself and 
family in 1842. 

John, son of the above, born in Ireland, 1720, and married 
Jennet Taggart, by whom he had children, — Isabella, James, 
Patrick, Martha, John, Mary and Daniel, whose descendants 
now chiefly reside in Maine. 

Patrick, son of the above, born 1767, married Deborah 
Martin in 1793, by whom he had children, — Polly, Daniel, 
John and Hannah, Rodney, Nancy, and two who died in 
infancy. Patrick died 1832, aged 67 ; Deborah, his wife, 
died 1832, aged 61. 

Polly, daughter of Patrick, died 1815, aged 21. 

Daniel, son of Patrick, born 1798, married Fanny Gault, 
by whom he had six children, — John G., Deborah, Nancy 
J., Dolly Frances, George and Patrick Henry. Dolly F. 
died 1847 ; the rest of the family remain in town. 

John, son of Patrick, born 1800, removed to Maine, and 
resides in Bangor. 

Hannah, born 1802, married Charles Rollins, Haverhill, 
Mass., and had children, — Rodney and James. 

Rodney, born 1804, married Abigail Hodgman, 1831, by 
whom he had seven children, — Aoijah H., Nancy, Sarah 
Annis, Rodney, Sumner, Clarissa, Charles Edward and an 


infant. Abigail, his wife, died 1846, aged 35. Rodney mar- 
ried again, Jerusha C. Spofford, by whom he had two chil- 
dren, who died in infancy. 

Nancy, daughter of Patrick, died 1S31, aged 23. 

McQUESTEN. William McQtiesten emigrated from the 
north of Ireland, to New England, about 1730, and married 
Margaret Arburkle. He remained a few years at Maiden or 
Medford, Mass., — probably the latter, — removed to and 
settled in Litchfield, N. H., when his son William was quite 
a small boy, precise date not known. He had three sons, 
William, Simon and John, and five daughters, all married, 
one of whom was the maternal grand-parent of Com. David 
Porter j another sustained the same relation to Mr. Robert 
Burns, a native of Bedford, whose early death occurred in 
this town, 1810, while a member of Dartmouth College. 

William, son of the above, born in Medford, Mass., mar- 
ried Margaret Nahor, of Litchfield, and had eleven children. 

David, eldest son of the last William, born in Litchfield, 
1757, married Margaret Fisher, of Londonderry, N. H., set- 
tled in Bedford, 1795, and had eight children, — William, 
Samuel, Sally B., David, Margaret N., Eliza, Calvin and 
Mary P. All lived to adult age, and five are living at this 

Samuel, second son of David, born in Litchfield, 1789, 
married Lucinda S. Foster, by whom he had three sons, — 
Samuel Foster, John Knox and David. 

This family have been warmly attached, from early time, 
to the doctrine and discipline of the Presbyterian Church, as 
an evidence of which the office of Ruling Elder has been 
borne by some representative in each of the four generations 
above traced, from the Scotch-Irish emigrant, 1730, to the 
present time. 

MARTIN. Nathaniel Martin came from GofTstown to 
Bedford, and married Marcy Goffe, daughter of Col. John 
Goffe, by whom he had nine children, six sons and three 
daughters, — Ichabod, Timothy, Nathaniel, Robert, Moses, 
Jesse, Hannah and Deborah, the oth-°r name not given. The 


family mostly removed to Maine, where their descendants 
now reside. Jesse is a minister of the gospel at Vassalbor- 
ongh, of the Methodist persuasion. Deborah married Patrick 

James, not of the above family, married Sarah Parker, 
sister of Dr. Parker, of Litchfield, moved to Bedford, and 
settled on the farm now occupied by Capt. Thomas Chand- 
ler, where he had five children, two sons and three daughters, 
— James, Jeremiah, Sally, Lydia and Polly. He died about 
1792. Sally married Theophilus Griffin, of Manchester, and 
now resides in Nashua. The rest of the family removed 
to Wol fborough. 

MOORE. John Moore came to this country from Ireland, 
with his wife Janet, and son William, and settled in London- 
derry. They suffered great hardships coming over ; his wife 
was a great reader of Flavel's Works, and on this account 
was sometimes called Jenny Flavel. 

William, son of John, whose name stands on the first 
board of elders, was born in Antrim County, Ireland, in 
1718. He came to this country, and lived in Londonderry, 
where he married Molly Jack, also from Ireland, and in 1745, 
came to Bedford, and settled on what is now the town farm. 
He had seven children, — John, Jenny, Nancy, James, Betsy, 
Molly and William, all of whom reached the ages ranging 
from 80 to 93. 

John, son of William, married Betsy Miller, by whom he 
had ten children, of whom only one survives, (widow Jane 
Parker, of this town. ) 

Jenny, married Alexander Jameson, settled in Antrim, had 
six children, and removed to New York. 

Nancy, married Thomas English, lived in Antrim, had six 
children, none of whom are living. 

James, born 1754, married Sally Carson, had eleven chil- 
dren, two of whom are living, William, in New York, and 
Annis, widow of the late Benj. S. Gage, in Woburn, Mass. 

Betsy, married J. Wellman, of Lyndeborough, had two 
children, none living. 

Molly, married Wm. Gibson, and settled in Lyman, had 
ten children, of whom two are living. 

William, born 1760, married Isabella McClary, by whom 


he had ten children, — James and Nancy, who are dead ; 
William, supposed to be lost at sea ; Jesse, of Beloit, Wiscon- 
sin, and Adams, of Littleton, N. H., are physicians of some 
note ; the rest of the family in the West. Dea. Wm. Moore 
was for many years an elder in the church, and was a 
soldier of the Revolution when very young. He died in 

James, son of Deacon William, married Sally, daughter of 
the late Elijah Chandler, by whom he had ten children, of 
whom only four are living. The others fell victims to 
consumption, with the exception of William C, who went 
South for his health, and was lost in a gale in the Gulf of 

Daniel, (Col.) brother of the first Deacon William, and 
son of John, born in Londonderry, Feb. 11, 1730, married 
Nancy Cox, 1751, at which time they settled in Bedford, on 
the Capt. Colly Farm, now owned by Daniel Jaquith, in the 
south part of the town. They had children, — John, Daniel, 
Elizabeth, Nancy, Eleanor, Ann and William. 

John, son of the above, born in Bedford, Aug. 28, 1752, 
married Annis Wallace, by whom he had children, — James, 
Daniel, Sally, John W., Ann, Robert, Jenny, Thomas W. 
and Abel G. 

Daniel, son of Col. Daniel, born in Bedford, Feb. 20, 
1755, was killed at the raising of a barn, at the west part 
of the town, on the Morrill place, so called, July 3, 1776. 

William, son of Col. Daniel, born in Bedford, Sept. 12, 
1773, married Martha Holmes, of Londonderry, by whom he 
had children, — Susan, Daniel, Nancy E., Joseph E., John 
H., Timothy F., Elizabeth, Nathaniel H., William, Martha 
Jane, Margaret M., Robert C. and David McG. 

Daniel, son of Col. William, born in Bedford, Feb. 23, 
1801, married Mary S. McQ,uesten. of Litchfield, April 1, 
1828, by whom he had children, — William C, James C, 
Martha Jane, Daniel L., George B. and Joseph H. His wife 
died Feb. 29, 1840. He married, as his second wife, Sarah 
Stevens, of New Boston. April 1, 1841, by whom he had one 
child, Ervin Jay. 

Joseph C, son of Col. William, born April 7, 1805, mar- 
ried Martha McQuesten, by whom he had children, — Mary, 
Susan Jane, Martha Ann, Abel F. and David R. 

Nancy C, daughter of Col. William, born in Bedford, Feb. 
19, 1S03. married Thomas W. Moore, and had children, — 


William, Martha Jane, Annis Jane, Thomas, Olive J. and 
Margaret Ann. 

Timothy F., son of Col. William, born June 16, 1809, 
married Clarissa Emery, of Newbury, N. H.. and had chil- 
dren, — James W., Sarah J., Charlotte Ann, Quincy and 

Elizabeth, daughter of Col. William, born Dec. 29, IS 10, 
married Lancey Weston, Sept., 1831, and resided some years 
in Antrim : now in Michigan. 

Nathaniel H., son of Col. William, born Dec. 24, 1812, 
married Jane Smith, May 9, 1837. Jane died, 1847. 

William, son of Col. William, born May 20, 1815, married 
Mary Kendall, by whom he had children, — Martha Jane, 
Marion and Sarah Elizabeth. 

Margaret M., daughter of Col. William, born May 20, 
1820, married Ephraim White, and had children, — Moses 
and George. George died, 1851. 

Robert C, son of Col. William, born May 20, 1823, mar- 
ried Jane Sweetser, of Hooksett. 

The following curious document, belonging to the papers 
of Col. Moore's family, may properly have a place here. 

" Know all men by these Presents, that I, Robert Griffin 
of Bedford, in the County of Hillsborough and Province of 
New Hampshire, Yeoman, In consideration of the sum of 
Thirteen Pounds and six pence, Lawful money, Paid by 
Capt. Daniel Moore of the aforesaid Town, County and Prov- 
ince, The Receipt whereof I do hereby acknowledge, have 
bargained, Sold and by these Presents do Bargain, Sell and 
Convey, unto him, the said Daniel Moore, a certain Negro 
Boy Slave, Named Bristo, about Twenty-three months old ; 
also a cow about three years old of a red and white color. 
To have and to hold the Said Negro Slave and Cow, unto 
him the said Daniel Moore, his Executors, Administrators 
and Assigns, for ever. And the said Robert Griffin do hereby 
Covenant with the said Daniel Moore, that I have good right 
to sell and convey the Said Negro Slave and Cow, in man- 
ner aforesaid, and that, until the delivery hereof, I am the 
lawful owner of the Same. And that I, my Heirs, Execu- 
tors, administrators and assigns, Shall and will forever War- 
rant the same to the said Daniel Moore, his Executors, 
administrators and assigns. 

"Ill witness whereof, I, the Said Robert Griffin, have here- 


unto set my Hand and Seal, the first day of Nov., in the 
Fourteenth year of his Majesty's (King George the Third's) 
Reign, And in the year of our Lord, A. D. 1773. Signed, 
Sealed and delivered. Robert Griffin, [l. s.] 

" In presence of 

" Samuel Marshall, 

"John Morrison." 

MOORE. Samuel, married daughter of Col. J. Goffe, and 
had children, — Nathaniel, Samuel, Joseph and Rachel. 

Samuel^ son of Samuel, married Betsy French, and had 

Russell, son of Samuel, born in Manchester, Feb. 16, 
1801, married and had children, — Samuel, Charlotte and 
Ira. He moved to Bedford, April 1, 1839. 

MOORE. James, (not connected with the preceding — 
family given on another page by another name,) married 
Betsy Giles. He was born in Londonderry, and had 
children, — John G., Joseph, Ebenezer G., Moody, Freeman, 
James and Thankful. 

John G., son of James, born in Londonderry, Nov. 27, 
1790, married Fanny, daughter of James G. Dow, of Dor- 
chester, N. H., and had children, — James, born 1821; Sa- 
rah D. 1827 ; John, 1828 ; Elizabeth A., 1831 ; Laura, 1833 ; 
Gilman D., 1838 ; Henry C, 1841. 

ORR. John Orr came from the north of Ireland, with 
his brother Daniel, and sister Jennet, in 1726. They first 
resided in Londonderry. The brothers were married, John 
to Margaret Kamel. and Daniel to Eleanor Orr. Jennet mar- 
ried a Dinsmoor, and settled in what is now Windham, 
where the descendants still live. John and his wife died 
suddenly, of fever, within four days of each other, May, 
1754, leaving several children, of whom one or two were 
born in Ireland ; one son was drowned in childhood, as 
already noticed on another page. 

Daniel, as above, had four children, — John, Jennet, Mar- 
tha and George. George married Margaret Wallace, by whom 
he had children, — Jane, Eleanor, Ann and Margaret ; Jane 
married Ebenezer Fisher of Londonderry, and Eleanor mar" 
ried Samuel Sawyer. The others lived and died single. 

Annis, daughter of John, married Dea. John Aiken, 


Mary, second daughter of John, married Joseph Hous- 
ton, of Bedford. 

Margaret, youngest daughter of John, married Jacob Mc- 
Gaw, Esq., of Merrimac. 

Hugh, oldest son of John, married Sarah Reed, of Lon- 
donderry, and settled on part of the paternal farm. He sold 
to his brother, and went to Hancock or Antrim ; then went 
to Rockingham, Vt., thence to Homer, N. Y., where he died. 
His family, supposed to consist of six daughters and three 
sons, are scattered over the western country. 

John, youngest son of John, bought out his brother Hugh, 
and lived on the homestead ; married Jane, daughter of Dea. 
Benj. Smith, by whom he had five sons and three daughters. 
His wife died Sept. 5, 1786. He married, as his second wife, 
Sarah, daughter of Rev. John Houston, May, 1788, by whom 
he had four daughters and three sons. [See Biographical 

Benjamin, son of second John, born Dec. 1, 1772 ; 1805, 
he married Elizabeth, daughter of Capt. Richard Toppan, who 
had moved from Newburyport to Topsham, 1799. She was of 
the fourth generation in descent from John Robinson, of Ley- 
den memory. They had eleven children, of whom two sons 
received a Collegiate education, viz., John, who graduated at 
Bowdoin College, 1S34, studied divinity at Bangor, and is 
now settled in the ministry at Alfred, Me. ; Henry, graduated 
at Bowdoin College, 1846, and is settled as a lawyer in 
Brunswick. [See Biographical notice.] 

Margaret, daughter of second John, born Sept 1, 1774, 
married Samuel Chandler, Nov., 1800. 

James, son of second John, born May 12, 1776, went to 
sea, settled in Newburn, S. C.. little or nothing known of 
him for forty years. 

Adam, son of second John, born April 20, 1778 ; appren- 
ticed to Hon. Benj. Russell, in the printing busine?s, Boston ; 
went to Tobago, West Indies, 1798 ; Attorney for Plantations 
and Master in Chancery in the King's Court ; died there, 
Jan., 1820 ; never married. 

Mary, daughter of second John, married Rev. Win. Milti- 
more, and now lives in Litchfield. 

Annis, daughter of second John, born Sept. 22, 1782 ; in 
the fall of 1805, married Rev. David McGregor, and died the 
year following, leaving no issue. 

Hugh, son of second John, born Sept. 28, 1784 ; in the 


fall of 1805, he went to his brother in Tobago, where he 
died, after a residence of six months. 

John, son of second John, born Aug. 21, 1786; married 
Ann McAffee, of Bedford, and moved to Elba, N. Y., about 
1810, where he still lives; had two sons, (one died in infan- 
cy,) and five daughters; settled in New York and farther 

Jane, daughter of second John and his wife Sarah, born 
May, 1789 ; married John P. Wallace, Merrimac ; removed 
to Greensborough, Vt., where they still live. They had 
three sons that lived to maturity ; one died on his way to 
Texas ; the second is a successful teacher ; the younger is 
preparing for College. 

William, son of second John and Sarah, born 1790 
graduated at Dartmouth College, 1815 ; studied law in 
Troy, N. Y. ; settled in New Orleans, where he died, 1828 
never married. 

Isaac, son of second John and Sarah, born June, 1792 
graduated at Yale College ; [See Biographical notice ;] mar- 
ried Mary Morris, by whom he had three sons, of whom one 
is living in Detroit, the other two dead ; again married, Ma- 
tilda Kidder, by whom he had two sons, of whom one is 

Sarah, daughter of second John and Sarah, born 1794; 
married Rev. Wm. Chapin, as his second wife, and lives 
in Greensborough, Vt. ; they have two children, son and 
daughter. Mr. Chapin died 1850. 

Robert, son of second John and Sarah, born Dec. 23, 
1797; graduated at Yale College, 1820; studied law with 
his brother, Benjamin, Brunswick, Me. ; settled in Topsham, 
where he died in 1829. 

Ann, daughter of second John and Sarah, born 1799 ; 
July, 1825, married Rev. Samuel A. Worcester ; went with him 
to the Cherokee Mission, Georgia, and with part of the tribe, 
removed west to Arkansas ; settled at Park hill, New-Echota, 
where she died, leaving a number of children. At the time 
of the trouble with the Indians in Georgia, her husband was 
unjustly imprisoned, on which occasion she manifested great 
fortitude and resolution. 

Elizabeth, daughter of second John and Sarah, born July 
1, 1801; died in Saugus, Mass., where she was attending 
school, under the care of Rev. Joseph Emerson, 1822. 


PARKER. Josiah Parker came from England, to this 
country, some time prior to 1700. 

Thomas, son of Josiah, born Dec. 7, 1700; graduated at 
Harvard College, 1718; settled in the ministry at Dracut, 
1721; died March 18, 1765. He had children, — Thomas, 
John, William, Matthew and Jonathan. 

John, son of Thomas, the clergyman, married, and had 
children, — Lydia, who married Thomas Whittle ; Nabby, 
who married William Parker ; Polly, who married John 
Boies, and went to Maine ; Sally, who married James Mar- 
tin ; Lucy, who married John Tufts ; John, who married 
Letty Moor ; William, who married Hannah Aiken, as his 
first wife, and Widow McGaw, as his second. 

William, son of Thomas, the clergyman, (killed in the 
mill-yard,) married Mehitabel Baldwin, Boston, and had chil- 
dren, — Betsy, who married John Barber, Boston ; Polly, who 
married Jonas Varnum, Dracut ; William, who married Nab- 
by Parker, Litchfield ; John, who went to sea and was lost. 

William, son of the above, born Jan. 21, 1755, died July, 
1819 ; married Nabby Parker, born Oct. 25, 1765, died June, 
1846. They had children, — Susan, born Oct. 21, 1783, 
married Jonathan Palmer, died 1844 ; Daniel, born Sept. 20, 
1786, married Polly McAffee ; William, born' April 28, 1789, 
married Susan Whittle ; Betsy, born Sept. 23, 1791, married 
James Parker, Esq., for her first husband; Isaac, born June 
23, 1794, married Jane Poor ; Robert, born May 13, 1797, 
married, as his second wife, Mille Rand, died 1844 ; Gilman, 
born July 7, 1800, married Ann Hills, died 1846 ; John, bora 
May 7, 1803, married Eliza Goffe ; Mary, born May 11, 1806, 
married L. F. Harris ; Edward, born March 22, 1809, died 
April 8, 1815. 

James, son of Matthew of Litchfield, born 1774, died 
March 26, 1822, married Betsy Parker, and had children, — 
Henry C, born Jan. 22, 1813, and Jannet M., born May 2, 
1821, died April 16, 1822. Mrs. P. married James Walker, 
and had two children, — James P. and Charles H. James 
P., at the age of 22, is about to enter College, and Charles K., 
aged 20, is an engineer on the Montreal Rail-Road. 

PARKER. Ebenezer, born in Chelmsford, Mass. ; re- 
moved to Merrimac, N. H., married Keziah, daughter of Benj. 
Hassell. Keziah's oldest sister was the first white child born 
in Merrimac. He died in Merrimac, April 18, 1804, aged 
51, and his wife, Feb. 24, 1816, aged 68. They had chil- 
dren, — John, Benjamin, Jesse, Joseph, Rachel, Betsy and 



Willard. Of Rachel's children, two became ministers, viz., 
David and Cyras Mills, the former of which is settled in 
Peoria, the latter, Missionary in Ceylon. Willard, son of 
Ebenezer, settled in Bedford, married Anna, daughter of Hugh 
Riddle, and had children, — Ann M., John O. Sarah R., Mar- 
garet P. and William C. Ann M. married Nathan Richard- 
son ; John O. married Annis Cochran, New Boston ; Sarah 
R. married John U. French. Jesse, son of Ebenezer, mar- 
ried Jane Moore, and had children, — Jesse, Jane, Thomas, 
Keziah and Ebenezer. Jesse, the father, died 1824 ; Eben- 
ezer, youngest son, died 1834, aged 14. 

PATTEN. John Patten came, with his family, to this 
country in 1728, and to this town in 1738 ; he died 1746, 
and his widow, Oct., 1764. 

Samuel, son of John, born in Ireland, 1713, married Mary 
Bell, Dec. 5, 1746, by whom he had ten children. 

Mary, born Dec. 1, 1747, married Tho's Townsend, 1794. 

Sarah, born March 17, 1749, married Zech. Chandler. 

Elizabeth, born Nov. 12, 1750, married John O'Neil, by 
whom she had six children, — John, Samuel, Edmund, James, 
Ann and William. 

Samuel, born Aug. 10, 1752, married Deborah Moore, by 
whom he had ten children, — John, born Feb. 6, 1778 ; 
Jenny, Nov. 26, 1779; Joseph, Nov. 8, 1781; Peggy, Nov. 
9, 1783; Deborah, Nov. 19, 1785; Sarah, May 6, 1788; 
Mary, April 28, 1790 ; Olive, April 16, 1792 ; Alice, July 30, 
1795 ; Samuel, Dec. 12, 1797. 

Margaret, born Aug. 18, 1754, died May, 1799. 

John, born June 23, 1756, married Hannah, daughter of 
John Wallace, by whom he had five children, — John, born 
April 14, 1788 ; Nancy, Jan. 25, 1790 ; Hannah, March 25, 
1792 ; Samuel, Feb. 22, 1794 ; Zacheus, Sept. 28, 1796. 

Joseph, son of Samuel, born Jan. 3, 1758. married Mary 
Dickey, by whom he had ten children, — William, born 
April 11, 1791; Deborah, Aug. 19, 1792, died April 29, 
1793 ; Jane, Feb. 14, 1794 ; Achsah, Jan. 3, 1796 ; lrena, 
May 17, 1797; Margaret, March 5, 1799; Vina, Dec. 14, 
1800 ; Samuel, March 30, 1803 ; Adam N., June 19, 1805 ; 
Ann, Sept. 7, 1808. 

William, son of Joseph, married Hannah, daughter of 


John Patten. They brought up, as adopted daughter, Mary, 
daughter of John W.Moor, born Nov. 14, 1814, died Jan., 1S41. 

Jane, daughter of Joseph, married Mr. Isaac Gage, as his 
second wife. 

Achsah, daughter of Joseph, married Capt. John Patten. 

Margaret, daughter of Joseph, married Joseph H. Stevens. 

Vina, daughter of Joseph, married John Adams, 1850. 

Samuel, son of Joseph, married Keziah, daughter of Jesse 
Parker, by whom she had three children, — Edwin H., born 
March 15, 1841 ; John A., Sept. 20, 1843 ; Samuel H., March 
14, 1849. 

Adam N., son of Joseph, married Clarissa, daughter of 
Abijah Hodgman, born Aug. 4, 1806, by whom he had four 
children, — Joseph, born Jan. 6, 1833, died Feb., 1834; 
Samuel J., April 7, 1836; William M., Oct. 22, 1841; Abi- 
gail A., Nov. 23, 1846. 

Ann, daughter of Joseph, married Jona. Knight, died 1843. 

John, son of John, married Achsah, daughter of Joseph 
Patten, by whom he had ten children, — Asenath, born Nov. 
24, 1818; Wm. B., Nov. 7, 1821; Margaret A., Dec. 7, 
1823 ; Alfred F., Feb. 13, 1827; Lavina J., Nov. 24, 1828; 
Clarrissa J., Sept. 3, 1831, died June 14, 1832; Samuel J, 
April 21, 1833; Mary J., Jan. 17, 1837; Sarah E., Jan. 20, 
1840; Charles H., Oct. 1, 1844. John, the father, was killed 
by the fall of a tree, Jan. 31, 1851. 

Nancy, daughter of John, married Capt. Jo. Moore, by 
whom she had three children, — Maria, (dead,) John P. and 
Henry C. 

Jane, daughter of first Samuel, born Feb. 11, 1760, mar- 
ried Daniel Gould, by whom she had one child, who died 
June, 1794. 

Matthew, son of first Samuel, born July 19, 1762, died 
June 16, 1763. 

Ann, daughter of first Samuel, born June 12, 1764, mar- 
ried James Miller, by whom she had one child, Achsah P. 

Matthew, (Hon.) son of John Patten that came over. [See 
Biographical sketch.] He married Elizabeth, daughter of 
John McMurphy, of Londonderry, by whom he had eleven 
children, — Susannah, married Thomas Taggart, of Col- 
raine ; John, died of small pox in Canada, in Revolutionary 
war ; Matthew, died in infancy ; James, went to Ohio, was 
under St. Clair in the Indian War, and prisoner among the 
Indians four years ; Betsy, married Hugh Talford, of Ches- 


ter ; Robert, married Jane Shirley, of Goffstown ; David, 
unmarried ; Mary, or Aunt Polly, as she was called, was a 
woman of uncommon memory of facts and dates, and is 
alluded to in the course of this History, unmarried ; Alexan- 
der, married Lydia At wood, of this town ; Jane, unmarried ; 
Sarah, unmarried — the only one surviving, (1850.) 

PRICHARD. This is among the early names of New 
England. There was Hugh Prichard, of Roxbury, 1642. 

Benjamin, born in Boxford, Mass., 1769. He moved to 
New Ipswich, N. H., was married Oct. 4, 1791, and had chil- 
dren, — Alanson, Bernice, Martha, Benjamin and Silva. 

Bertiice, son of Benjamin, born in New Ipswich, moved to 
Bedford, and had children, — Martha A., Asenath, Eunice 
and Clara. 

RAND. This name is of French origin. It was formerly 
spelt Rande, and pronounced Ronda. Of the ancestry of this 
family, little is known farther back than Rev. John Rand, 
born in Charlestown, Mass., where all of the name, so far as 
known, originated. He was born Jan. 24,^1727, took degree 
at Harvard College, in 1747. He settled in Lyndeborough, 
N. H., as first Congregational minister of that town, about 
1761, and soon after married Sarah, daughter of Col. John 
Goffe, of Derryfield, now Manchester. He removed to 
Derryfield, in 1765, and never preached statedly afterwards, 
but received a commission of Justice of Peace, under George 
the third, and removed to Bedford, in 1 778, where he died, in 
October, 1805, aged 77. His wife survived him about three 
years. They were buried in the old graveyard, in the east 
part of the town. They had seven children, three born in 
Lyndeborough, and four in Derryfield. John and Jonathan, 
twins, born June 24, 1762; Mille, Feb. 5, 1764; Robert, 
May 13, 1767; Sarah, Jan. 20, 1774; Nehemiah and 
Thomas, twins, May 22, 1776. John, one of the twins, died 
in Oct., 1780 ; the others lived to be settled in life. Mille 
and Robert married into the family of Mr. John Gordon, 
of Bedford. Jonathan and Sarah married into the family 
of Dea. Ephraim Abbot, of Amherst, now Mt. Vernon. [See 
Abbot family.] Nehemiah and Thomas married in New 
Boston. Jonathan resided principally in Bedford. He died 


June, 1848, aged 86. Mille resided in Washington, N. H., 
and died in 1833, aged 69, a few years after the death of her 
husband. Robert settled first in Bedford, then removed to 
Washington, N. H., and then t<3 Orange, Vt. He died at 
Swanton, Vt., while connected with the army, during the last 
war with Great Britain, in 1814, aged 47. Sarah, wife of 
Rev. Samuel Abbot, still lives at the age of 76. Nehemiah 
settled first in Bedford, then removed to Plattsburg, N. Y., 
then returned to New Boston, where he now resides with his 
children, having buried his wife. Thomas settled in West 
Springfield, Mass., 1S03, where he and his wife now reside ; 
having been in the gospel ministry, 51 years. 

Dea. Jonathan Rand, of Bedford, had eight children, — 
Mille, born April 29, 1795, married Robert Parker, of Bed- 
ford ; Esther P., born Dec. 30, 1796; Jonathan, born Jan. 
11, 1799, drowned in Merrimac River, June 6, 1810; John, 
born Jan. 27, 1801, distinguished as an artist ; Ephraim, born 
Dec. 17, 1S03, married Catharine Gray, Augusta, Me. ; Sarah, 
born Feb. 3, 1806, died Feb. 8, 1832 ; Dorothy, born May 
15, 1809, died May 16, 1811; Philinda, P., born July 9, 
1811, died April 6, 1S32. 

RIDDLE. This name was originally spelt, Riddel. 
Three brothers, Gawn, sometimes spelt Gaen, Hugh, and 
Robert, came to this country about the year 1737, from Col- 
raine, County Derry, north of Ireland, being descended from 
Scotch ancestors. They first settled in Londonderry, N. H. 
About the year 1758, they removed to Bedford. Robert and 
Hugh settled on land adjoining each other, in the north part 
of the town, and subsequently removed to Colraine, Mass., 
where some of their descendants still reside. Among them 
is the present Secretary of the American Education Society, 
who retains the original spelling of the name. Another, Rev. 
D. H. Riddle, D. D., this year moderator of the New School 
Assembly, Detroit, Michigan. 

Gawn, was born in 1700, and died Dec. 29, 1779, aged 79. 
He settled about half a mile west of the town-house, at the 
centre of the town, near a small mill-brook. An old well 
still remains at the spot. He married Mary, daughter of John 
Bell, who came over from Ireland in the same vessel, when 
about fourteen years of age. She died in Bedford, Jan. 7. 


1813, aged 92. They had six children, who all settled in 
Bedford : — John, David, Susannah^Hugh, Isaac and William. 

John, son of Gawn, born 1754, died Nov 18, 1813, aged 
59. He settled near the place now known as Riddle's Mill. 
By occupation, he was a millwright, and built most of the 
mills that were in operation in this section of the country at 
that time. He owned the farm where he resided, and was a 
very industrious, hard-working man. In 1775, he married 
Mary McAffee, from whom descended nine children, — Gawn, 
Molly, Nancy, Sukey, James, Anna, John, Matthew, and Wil- 
liam. For his second wife, he married Sarah Hartshorn, by 
whom he had Gilman and Eliza. 

Gawn, son of John, born Jan. 28, 1777, died July, 1837, 
aged 60. He lived on the homestead place, and held several 
offices in the town. He married Dolly French, by whom he 
had Asenath, Albert, and Nancy. She now resides with her 
son Albert in Amherst. Asenath married Thomas G. Hol- 
brook, and died of consumption in the year 1845. Albert 
married Miss Wheeler of Merrimac, and after living some 
time on the homestead, removed to Amherst, where he now 
resides. Nancy married Gregg Campbell, and died Jan. 31, 
1837, aged 33. 

Molly, daughter of John, born Dec. 17, 1779. In 1804, 
she married a Mr. Black, and settled in Prospect, Maine. 

Nancy, daughter of John, born Jan. 5, 1781. In 1806, she 
married William French, and settled in Prospect, Me. 

Susannah, daughter of John, was born in 1784. In 1807 
she married Daniel Moore, Bedford. 

James, son of John, born Jan. 9, 1786, lived on the home- 
stead, was enterprising and energetic, but was unfortunate in 
losing the use of his limbs by rheumatism, while in the prime 
of life. He died on town-meeting day, in March, 1827. In 
1815, he married Anna, daughter of Col. Stephen Dole. She 
was born Oct. 16, 1790, died Oct. 11, 1849, aged 59. She 
had children, — Betsey D., and Sally D. Betsey D. married 
William, son of Theodore Goffe, and is now settled at the 
West. Sally D., born March 20, 1820, married Wm. R., son of 
Capt. Leonard C. French, in 1841, and now resides in Bedford. 

Anna, daughter of John, born May, 1789, married James 
Staples and settled in Prospect, Maine. 

John, of the family of John, died at the age of 21. 

Matthew, eighth of the family of John, married Sally, 
daughter of Col. Stephen Dole, and settled in Terre Haute, 


William, ninth of the family of John, died in 1845. 
Gilman, tenth of the family of John, born July, 1811, 
married Mary J. Eveleth; in 1836. For his second wife, he 
married Emeline Henry, of Goffstown, in 1841, and now 
resides in Manchester. 

Eliza S., eleventh of the family of John, born in IS 13, 
married, and resides in Belfast, Maine. 

David, second son of Gawn, who came over, was born in 
1756, and died in 1839, aged 83. He settled near his father's 
farm ; was noted for his originality. In his political princi- 
ples, he was strongly democratic, differing in that respect from 
the rest of his brothers. He was a soldier of the Revolution, 
and received a pension. In 1798, at the age of 42, he mar- 
ried Molly, daughter of Maj. Dunlap, by whom he had John 
D., Hugh, Martha, and Gilman and Mary, twins, who died. 
John D., born March 20, 1802, married Sally, daughter of 
Lieut. James Gilmore, born Jan. 25, 1805, by whom he had 
Martha Ann, Margaret, Sarah Jane, David, dead, Mary and 

Hugh, son of David, was born April 8, 1S03. When 
young, he left Bedford, and went to Baltimore, where he was 
extensively engaged in constructing the public works of that 
city. In 1837, he built the Baltimore Custom House, and 
was largely connected in building the first railroads termi- 
nating in that place. In 1849, he left Baltimore, in company 
with others, for California, by the overland route. On this 
expedition he lost his life, whether killed by some prowling 
Indian or hostile white, rests in uncertainty. The following 
is an extract from a letter of Dr. Jesse Moore, formerly of this 
town, dated Feb. 19, 1850 : " After I had crossed the moun- 
tain, while riding on the plains, I saw a flag waving in the 
distance, and curiosity prompted me to go and see why it was 
placed there. Beneath its folds, I found a lone grave, at the 
head of which was a board, with this inscription cut upon it, 
— ' Hugh Riddle, formerly of Bedford, N. H., aged about 40.' 
Little did I think of finding the grave of one of my own 
native townsmen, on the plains of the Pacific." He was 
esteemed for the generosity and nobleness of his character. 

Martha, of this family, born Dec. 16, 1806, married Dan'l 
Barnard, in 1828, and resides in Bedford. 

Susannah, of the family of Gawn, who came over, born in 
1759, died Nov. 5, 1841, aged 82. She married Solomon 
Hutchinson, and settled in the town of Merrimac ; after- 


wards removed to Maine. They had Samuel, David, Solo- 
mon, Eliza, Sally, Susannah, Roxiana, Nancy, Hannah, and 
Mary, of whom we have no account, except Nancy, born 
in 1787, and married Capt. L. C. French, in 1808. Resides 
in Bedford. 

Hugh, son of Gawn, who came over, married Ann Maria, 
daughter of Rev. John Houston. He was a Revolutionary 
soldier, entering the army at the age of 17. He died, Aug. 
1833. His wife died April 20, 1837, at the age of 72. They 
had Gawn, Robert, Polly, Sally, Susannah, and Jane. 

Gawn married Betsey, daughter of Lieut. James Moore, 
and settled near his father. For his second wife, he married 
Rebecca, daughter of Robert Walker, son of the first settler. 
They had Hugh, Elizabeth, Ann, and Edward. 

Robert, second son of Hugh, was a graduate of Yale Col- 
lege, studied medicine, and settled in Bedford. He was con- 
sidered a skilful physician, and was fast rising in notice, when 
he died in the prime of life, in 1828, leaving many to mourn 
his loss. 

Anna, of this family, born March 3, 1794, married Wil- 
lard Parker in 1820, and resides on the homestead. 

Polly, of this family, born Feb. 12, 1796, married Dan- 
iel L. French, in 1820. He left the pursuits of agricul- 
ture, and pursued a theological education at Gilmanton, and 
was ordained pastor of the church at Nelson, N. H., where 
he resides. 

Sally, of this family, born Nov. 7, 1799, married Col. 
Daniel C. Gould, in 1842. He was formerly a merchant at 
Henniker, now resident at Manchester. 

Susan, of this family, born Oct. 10, 1801, married Dea. 
Robert Boyd, of Londonderry. She died in 1849. 

Jane, of this family, born September 11, 1804, married 
Eleazer, son of Dea. Richard Dole, in 1825 ; died of con- 
sumption, March 1834. 

Isaac, fifth of the family of Gawn, who came over, born 
June 10, 1762, settled in the centre village, Bedford, in 1798, 
and married Ann, daughter of Capt. James and Margaret 
Aiken, who was bom Nov. 12, 1764. Her death, April 6, 
1804, was very sudden, occasioned by a fall from her horse, 
at her own door. She was just going on horseback to visit 
her brother, William Riddle, who had broken his leg in the 
saw-mill. Her neck was dislocated, and she died in an hour, 
at the age of forty, deeply lamented. They had William P., 


James, Isaac, Gilman, and David. In 1806, he married Mar- 
garet, daughter of Jacob McGaw, of Merrimac, born May 25, 
1776, died Dec. 19, 1816. She was an accomplished lady, and 
a member of the church in Bedford. They had Jacob 
McGaw, Rebecca, and Margaret Ann. In 1820, he married 
Mrs. Mary Vinal, of duincy, Mass., for his third wife. She 
was daughter of Enoch Lincoln, and sister of Capt. Lincoln, 
one of the party that destroyed the tea in Boston harbor, in 
1776. She was born, Jan. 27, 1760, and died April 5, 1837. 
She was a woman highly esteemed for her social and religious 
worth. About the time of his marriage to Mrs. Vinal, Mr. 
Riddle removed from Bedford to Q,uincy. He built a spacious 
mansion at Q.uincy Point, and there spent the remainder of 
his life. He died suddenly, from the effects of a slight wound 
received at the time his factory was burnt at Souhegan ; the 
wound terminating in mortification. His remains were 
brought from Quincy, and deposited in the family tomb at 
Bedford, being the first laid there. Mrs. Riddle died at 
Quincy, April 5, 1837, and was entombed there with her first 

William P., son of the above, born April 6, 1789, settled 
at Piscataquog Village, and commenced trade in 1811. In 
1824, he married Sarah, daughter of Capt John Ferguson. 
She was born June 4, 1794, died June 14, 1837. They had 
the following children, — Margaret Aiken, born Sept. 9, 1824, 
died Oct. 5, 1828 ; George Washington, Nov. 9, 1826 ; Wil- 
liam Quincy, June 8, 1828 ; Daniel Willshire, born May 13, 
1830, died Sept. 15, 1831; Sarah Maria, May 24, 1832; 
Daniel Willshire, July 12, 1833 ; Carroll, Aug. 2, 1834. 

James, second son of Isaac, born June 26, 1791, settled in 
Merrimac-Souhegan, known also as Riddle's Village. In 1810 
he married Charlotte, sister of John Farmer, Esq., the dis- 
tinguished antiquarian. She was born July 20, 1792, and 
died at Gluincy, 1825, where she was on a visit. She was 
an amiable, beautiful woman. She had children, — Char- 
lotte, Margaret and Mary Ann. In 1828, he married Laura, 
daughter of Mr. Solomon Barker, of Pelham, born Jan 11, 
1802, died March 4, 1831. In 1833 he married again, Eliza 
Hunt, born May 6, 1807, who survives him, and resides in 
Nashville, N. H. She had Eliza Frances. Mr. James Rid- 
dle died Nov. 24, 1840, aged 49. His remains rest in the 
family tomb at Bedford, with his wives. Of this branch, 
Charlotte M., born Feb. 20, 1817, married Nathan Parker, 


Esq., 1837, and now resides in Manchester ; Mary Ann Lin- 
coln, born Aug. 9, 1S23 ; Eliza Frances, born Sept. 4, 1832. 

Isaac, son of Isaac, the son of Gawn, who came over, born 
July 25, 1793, married Betsy, daughter of Dea. Aiken, Sept. 
30, 1818. They had children, as follows, — Ann Elizabeth, 
born Feb. 18, 1820, died Jan. 26, 1850 ; Isaac Newton, born 
Aug. 12, 1832; Jane Aiken, July 6, 1825, married B. F. 
White ; John Aiken, Sept. 8, 1826 ; Silas Aiken, July 22, 
1831. Mrs. Riddle died Oct. 21, 1843. For his second wife, 
he married Mrs. Ursula S. Aubin, of Newburyport, born 
Feb. 11, 1815. She had one daughter, Frances Ellen, born 
Nov. 28, 1839. 

Gilman, fourth of the family of the first Isaac, born Nov. 
28, 1795, died Oct. 8, 1799. 

David, fifth of this family, born Aug. 27, 1797. He en- 
tered Dartmouth College, 1814, but was obliged to leave on 
account of his slender health. In 1826, he married Mary, 
daughter of Jedediah Lincoln, born Sept. 28, 1798, by whom 
he had children, — Mary E., born April 16, 1827; Gilman, 
born Oct 18, 1828, died Sept. 11, 1835; Charles L., born 
Dec. 7, 1830; Adeline, April 11, 1833. David died in Mer- 
rimac, after which the family removed to Hingham, where 
they now reside. In 1815, Mr. R., on account of his health, 
made a voyage to Europe, under the care of Capt. McGregor, 
in the brig Randolph, of Boston. His disease was caused by 
a tape-worm, which, during his sea-sickness on the voyage, 
was discharged, being something like 100 feet in length ; 
after which he enjoyed good health, and engaged in business 
in Mernmac. 

Jacob McGaw, sixth of the family of Isaac, born Dec. 30, 
1806, educated at the Military Academy, Norwich, Vt., then 
under charge of Capt. Partridge. At the age of eighteen, he 
went to sea ; was a mariner by profession. He was lost at 
sea on his fifth voyage, Sept. 21, 1835. The circumstances 
were remarkable. He was first mate of the new brig Wash- 
ington, of Boston, on her first voyage to Cadiz with a cargo 
of staves, twelve hours out of Boston, about ten miles south 
of Nantucket Shoals, off Cape Cod, about 10 at night, after 
all hands had turned in, she was struck by a flaw of wind 
and capsized bottom up, when all on board, twelve in num- 
ber, perished, except the man at the helm, Haskins by name, 
of Portland, who succeeded in getting on the keel of the 
brig, and was taken off next day by the inward-bound ship 
"Jacob Perkins." 


Margaret Ann, seventh of this family, born July 7, 1809. 
In 1830, she married Gen. Joseph C. Stevens, merchant in 
Bangor, Me. 

Rebecca, eighth of this family, born Aug. 13, 1811. died 
of spotted fever, Aug. 9, 1812. 

William, sixth of the family of Gawn who came over, 
born July 5, 1765, lived on the homestead, and inherited his 
father's estate. In 1791, he married Janet, daughter of Al- 
exander Gilchrist, of Goffstown. She was born July 12, 
1768, and died Nov. 9, 1838. They had children, — Polly, 
William, Martha, Freeman, Jane, Marinda, Benjamin F. and 
Margaret T. William, the father, died July, 1838, leaving a 
character behind him distinguished for public and private 
virtues. He held many important offices of trust in the 
town. For many years he was town treasurer, and held the 
commission of civil magistrate. 

Polly, first of the family of William, born June 22, 1792, 
married Dr. P. P. Woodbury, Jan 8, 1813, died April 20, 1819. 

William, second of the family of William, born Feb. 8, 
1794. In 1828, he married Mrs. Anna, widow of James Rid- 
dle, (family of John Riddle.) He died of dropsy, Dec. 26, 
1849. He had children, — Laura, born April 17, 1831, and 
James W., born March 12, 1833, died Aug. 31, 1849. 

Martha, third of the family of William Riddle, Esq., born 
April 18, 1796, married Dr. P. P. Woodbury, Aug. 18, 1819, 
died Aug. 19, 1832. 

Freeman, fourth of this family, born March 13, 1798, 
graduated at Yale College, 1816, studied and practised medi- 
cine, settled in Upper Canada, and there died, of consump- 
tion, Jan. 21, 1826. 

Jane, fifth of this family, born Sept. 3, 1800, married 
John Goffe, Jan. 31, 1826, and resides on the old homestead. 

Marinda, sixth of this family, born April 6, 1802, lived at 
home till 1838, then went to St. Clair, Michigan, where she 
died Oct, 24, 1840. 

Benj. F., seventh of this family, born May 20, 1804, lived 
on the farm till 1840, when he removed to Beloit, Wisconsin, 
where he now resides. In 1830, he married Abigail D., daugh- 
ter of Capt. Joseph Colley, and had children, — Mary, Joseph, 
Benj. F., Abby, Jane and Freeman. 

Margaret T., eighth of this branch, born June 22, 1806. 
She married Reuben, son of Capt. Joseph Moor, of Man- 
chester, in 1831, and settled in St. Clair, Michigan, where 
they now reside. 


Note. — At the head of this Genealogy, in naming the three 
brothers that first came over, it should be John instead of 
Robert. John and Hugh occupied the McAllister place. Rbt. 
was son of Hugh. John had a daughter, Mary or Molly, who 
lived and died in this town. Not known what became of John. 

SPOFFORD. John Spofford came from Yorkshire, Eng- 
land, (where the name and family have been traced back to 
1265,) with the Rev. Ezekiel Rogers, and settled in Rowley, 
Mass., 1638, and was one of the first settlers of that ancient 
town. He married in this country, Elizabeth, family name 
not known. Their children were, — Elizabeth, born Dec, 
1646 ; John, born Oct. 24, 1648, married Sarah Wheeler ; 
Thomas, born Nov. 4, 1650; Samuel, Jan. 31, 1652, ances- 
tor of the Andover Spoffords ; Hannah, April 1, 1654 ; Mary, 
Sept. 1, 1656; Sarah, Jan. 15, 1658, died Feb. 16, 1660; 
Sarah, born March 24, 1662 ; Francis, Sept. 24, 1665. 

John, son of first John, married Sarah Wheeler, by whom 
he had children, — John, born June 12, 1678, married Dor- 
cas Hopkinson ; Mary, born May 4, 1680 ; David, Nov. 23, 
1681; Jonathan, May 28, 1684; Martha, May 16, 1686; 
Ebenezer, June 15, 1690 ; Nathaniel, Sept. 10, 1691 ; Sarah, 
Dec. 20, 1693. 

John, son of second John, married Dorcas Hopkinson, and 
had children, — Francis, born Feb. 19, 1702, went to Con- 
necticut, had many connections ; John, born March 19, 1704, 
went to Charlestown, N. H. ; Abner, born Aug. 21, 1705, 
Deacon in Second Church, Rowley, Mass., died 1777 ; Sa- 
rah, born Feb. 21, 1707 ; Daniel, born April, 1721, Deacon 
in Second Church, Rowley, and Colonel in militia; Dorcas; 
Eliphalet, born 1725. 

Abner, son of third John, married Sarah Coleman, and had 
children, — Rachel, born Sept. 23, 1735; Eliza, Aug. 12, 
1739, settled in Jeffrey ; Sarah, March 4, 1741 ; John, Feb. 
20, 1742; Huldah, Nov. 11, 1744; Abraham, Feb. 3, 1748; 
Phebe, Jan. 6, 1751; Isaac, April 10, 1752, physician in 
Beverly, Mass. ; Jacob, Feb. 26, 1754, married Mary Ten- 

Jacob, youngest son of Abner, married as above, and had 
children, — Mary, born Feb. 18, 1778, married Jeremiah 
Kimball, Ipswich ; Hannah, Oct. 27, 1779 ; Sarah, Aug. 18, 
1781 ; Huldah, July 30, 1783, died 1810 ; Elizabeth, June 


3, 1785, died 1786 ; Chandler, May 28, 1788, married Betsey 
W. Cobb, who is a descendant, by mother, from Elder Brews- 
ter, of the May Flower; Elizabeth, Feb. 13, 1789, died 
1832; Austin, Jan. 23, 1791, died 1796; Sophia, Nov. 12, 
1793, died 1832 ; John, Sept. 18, 1795 ; Austin, Dec. 23, 
1798, died 1837 ; Uriah, Dec. 13, 1800. 

Chandler, son of Jacob, married Miss Cobb, Derry, came 
to Bedford, 1820; children, — Jerusha, born May 29, 1813; 
Susan, Aug. 9, 1814; Lemuel Chandler, May 31, 1816, grad- 
uate Dartmouth College, 1843 ; John Tenny, April 29, 1821, 
(settled in Manchester, and married Miss French, Candia, 
John's wife died, and he married Miss Eaton, of Candia, 1850. ) 
William Henry, April 2, 1828. 

SHEPARD. Thomas Shepard was in this country at a 
very early period. Nov. 19, 1658, he married Hannah En- 
sign, of Scituate, and resided part of the time at Milton, 
Mass., where he died Sept. 26, 1719. 

Jacob, son of the above, married Mercy Chickering, Char- 
lestown, Mass., Nov. 22, 1699. About 1704, he purchased 
a farm in what is now Foxborough, Mass., at that time 
within the limits of Dorchester, probably, as his children's 
births are there recorded. The farm was near a pond, still 
known by the name of " Shepard's pond." 

Thomas, son of Jacob, married Content White, of Taun- 
ton, June 5, 1735. He lived in Norton, Mass., where he 
died Oct. 19, 1774. 

George, son of the last Thomas, born in Norton, Jan. 12, 
1757, married Eunice Makepeace, of Boston, 1761. They had 
children, — Thomas, born Feb. 7, 1782 ; Nancy, Jan. 8, 1784, 
died 1818; Sophia, June 14, 1786, died 1816; George, Sept. 
12, 1790 ; Charles, May 8, 1799 ; Otis, April 12, 1793 ; Ma- 
ry, Aug. 7, 1802 ; Silas, March 29, 1805. 

Thomas, son of George and Eunice, married Elizabeth, 
daughter of John Holmes, Derry, N. H., May 16, 1811. She 
was born May 11, 1750. They had children, — John H., 
born March 11, 1812; Charles F., Oct. 17, 1813; George, 
Jan. 20, 1816, died 1845; James S., Sept. 24, 1818; Mary 
J., Nov. 9, 1820; Nancy P., Aug. 15, 1828; Thomas, Aug. 
5, 1826 ; William M. Oct. 15, 1828. 

John H., son of Thomas and Elizabeth, married Lucy, 
daughter of Wm. Pierson, Tewksbury, Mass., Dec. 21, 1841, 


and had one child, John P., Nov. 21, 1844. She died April 
9, 1845. He married Sarah A., sister of his first wife, Oct. 
9, 1845, by whom he had children, — William P., June 21, 
1847; Lucy A., May 21, 1849. 

Charles F., son of Thomas and Elizabeth, married Louisa 
A., daughter of Capt. Ebenezer Perry, of Amherst, N. H., 
Feb. 20, 1838. They had children, — Charlotte A. P., born 
Dec. 27, 1838, died 1849; Nancy J., born June 11, 1842, 
died 1842; George F., born April 20, 1845. 

James F., son of Thomas and Elizabeth, married Gratia 
A., daughter of Abraham Moore, of Hancock, N. H., July 14, 
1842. They had children, — Gratia E., born Jan., 1845, 
died 1845 ; Martha A., born Feb., 1847, died 1848 ; James 
A., born Nov., 1848. 

Mary J., daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth., married 
Hugh R., son of Rev. Daniel French, Oct. 27, 1842, and has 
one child, George M., born Jan. 6, 1846. 

Thomas S., son of Thomas and Elizabeth, married M. A., 
daughter of Abraham More, Hancock, N. H, Aug. 6, 1845, 
and had one child, born April, 1850, died 1850. His wife 
died Oct. 4, 1850, at the age of 25. 

Nancy, daughter of George and Eunice, married William 
Parker, Litchfield, N. H., 1S05. Had children, — George, 
born 1806, Mary Ann, James and Elizabeth. 

Sophia, daughter of George and Eunice, married William, 
son of Elijah ^Chandler, Nov. 27, 1808. Had children, — 
Caleb, born 1809; William B., 1811; Sarah, 1814; Sophia, 

George, son of George and Eunice, married Miss Q,uig, 
New York, 1818, where he resides and has a family. 

Otis, son of George and Eunice, married Susan, daughter 
of Joseph Nevens, Hollis, N. H., 1818, and had chil- 
dren, — Alfred B., born April 10, 1819; Charles A., July 
31, 1824; Frances M., Dec. 24, 1821; Alexander, March 
6, 1826. ' 

Charles, son of George and Eunice, married Betsy Wright, 
of Chelmsford, Mass., Nov., 1824. They had children,— 
Charles, born Oct. 10, 1826; Sylvester, May 17, 1831; 
George W., Feb. 8, 1833. Mrs. S. died, 1850. 

Mary, daughter of George and Eunice, married Amiel, son 
of Moses Noyes, Amherst, N. H., August, 1824, and had chil- 
dren, — Lucy J., Mary A., Sarah E., Albert, Alfred, Adeline, 
Alvira and Nancy. 


Silas, son of George and Eunice, married Lydia, daughter 
of Moses Noyes, Amherst, N. H., and had two children, — 
Sarah and Lucy F. 

SMITH. Deacon Benj. Smith came to this country from 
the north of Ireland, in 1738, and settled first in Londonderry. 
Catharine McCurdy, afterwards his wife, was born in the 
County of Antrim, in the Parish of Billy, and in infancy, 
with her parents, fled from persecution into the Highlands of 
Scotland, and her first dialect was the Erse of the Highlands, 
which she could always converse in. Returned to Ireland, 
and, with her family, emigrated to America in the same ves- 
sel with Benjamin Smith, and their first acquaintance was on 
board the vessel. They were married in early life in Lon- 
donderry. He was about 21, she a year or two older. They 
soon removed to Bedford, and were among the first settlers. 
They died at an advanced age, without a reproach to their 
character, he in October, 1812, aged about 92, she in Decem- 
ber, 1814, aged about 96. At the funeral of her husband, 
Mrs. Smith bid a farewell to her pretty prentice boy, for 
such he was when she first knew him. They had seven 
children, four sons and three daughters. 

Robert, the oldest son, married a Miss Sarah Tucker, of 
Pennsylvania, and settled first in Londonderry. Removed 
from there to New York, and lastly to Pennsylvania, where 
he died, leaving a posterity, which we cannot trace. 

James married Miss Elizabeth Mack, of Londonderry, and 
removed to Marietta, Ohio, where he died, leaving descend- 
ants that are unknown here. 

John, married Miss Margaret Dinsmore, of Windham, and 
settled in New Chester, now Hill. They had four or five 
sons, and three daughters. Three sons, Daniel, John and 
James went west, place unknown. Robert, his youngest son, 
still lives in Hill. Two daughters died at mature age, un- 
married ; and one daughter married a Mr. McMurphy, settled 
first in New Chester, and afterwards moved west. 

Elizabeth, oldest daughter of Dea. Benjamin, married 
Joshua Tolford, and settled in Alexandria, N. H. Their fam- 
ily removed to the north-west part of New York. 

Mary S., second daughter of Dea. Benjamin, married Hugh 
Campbell, and resided some time in Bedford ; removed from 



there to New Chester, and from there to the State of New 
York. Some of the family now reside in the neighborhood 
of Sandusky, Ohio. 

Jane, youngest daughter of Dea. Benjamin, married the 
Hon. John Orr. She died in 1786, leaving eight children, 
that lived to mature age, and are noticed as descendants of 
John Orr. 

Adam, the youngest child of Dea. Benjamin, married Miss 
Ann McAllister, and settled on the home farm. They had 
nine children ; two died in infancy, and seven lived to 
mature age. Margaret, the oldest, married David Houston, 
and settled laterly in Illinois, where he died, in May, 1845. 
Three daughters and two sons died of consumption. Adam, Jr., 
left two sons. Catharine married David P. Foster, now set- 
tled in Lawrence, Mass., and has three children, all living. 

STEVENS. Abial, born in Andover, Mass., came to Bed- 
ford, 1780, married Dorothy Martin, by whom he had four 
children, — David, Dolly, Martha and Polly. 

David, son of Abial, married Judith SpofTord, of Andover, 
daughter of Thomas Spofford and Ruxby Moody of Rowley, 
his wife. 

Dolly, daughter of Abial, married Joshua Wilson, of An- 
dover, by whom she had eleven sons and one daughter. 

Martha, daughter of Abial, married Dea. Aaron Gage, of 
Merrimac, by whom she had ten children, — Hannah, (widow 
of late Dea. Wra. Moore,) Aaron, Benjamin, Naomi, Solomon, 
Isaac, Sarah, Mary, Martha and Fanny. 

Polly, daughter of Abial, married Daniel Kimball, of An- 
dover, and had a large family. 

David, son of Abial, was a soldier of the Revolution ; was 
at Bunker Hill and Ticonderoga; came to Bedford with his 
father, and owned and lived on the farm where Dea. Moody 
M. now lives. He died Dec. 23, 1819, aged 64. He had 
nine children, — Greenleaf, Moody Martin, John, David, Sol- 
omon, Judith, Dolly, Polly and Jeremiah. 

Moody M.j son of David, the only one of the children 
living, married Eunice, daughter of Elijah Chandler, by whom 
he had nine children, — Abigail, Caroline Elizabeth, (who 
married Nathan Parker,) Elijah Chandler, William Bradford, 
(physician at Asylum for the Insane, Concord, who married 


Eliza A. Morrison,) Eunice, David, Martha G. and Harriet A. 
The two last, with their mother, have recently been called 
home, as is hoped, to their rest in heaven ; the mother, at the 
age of 64, and the two daughters, one 23, the other 22. 

John, son of David, who was the son of Abial, married 
Betsy Foster, who lived but a short time, leaving one child. 
He then married Abigail Stevens, and settled in Goffstown, 
where he became a Deacon in the Congregational Church. 
They had four children, one only surviving. 

David, son of David, married Betsy Rider, grand-daughter 
of Elijah Chandler, by whom he had eight children, — 
George, David, Mary Jane, Harriet, Greenleaf, Moody Adon- 
iram, Cordelia and John Newton. The parents are dead, and 
of the children, Cordelia is dead. 

STEVENS. Benjamin, born in England, 1721, came to 
this country and settled in Hampstead, N. H., married Miss 
A. Johnson, and had children, — Timothy, Jonathan, Eunice, 
Benjamin, Abigail, David, Phebe and Mary. 

Benjamin, son of the above, born in Goffstown, June 30, 
1750, married Miss A. Hadley, by whom he had children, — 
Martha, Joseph, Anna, Abigail and Benjamin. 

Benjamin, son of the above, born in Goffstown, May 21, 
1787, married Miss A. Dickerman, by whom he had chil- 
dren, — Benjamin, Joseph H., Persis, Alfred, Daniel L., Benj. 
F. and Martha. 

Joseph H., of the last Benjamin, born in Goffstown, April 
6, 1812, married Margaret Patten, by whom he has one 
child, Mary J. Anderson. 

SWETT. Moses, born in Newburyport, came to Bedford 
about 1786, married Hannah Plummer, of Newburyport, and 
had children, — Jonathan, Moses, Ebenezer, Hannah, Betsy, 
Mary and Lydia. 

Moses, son of the above, born 1776, married Nancy Good- 
in, of Portland, and had children, — Polly, Jane, Edmund, 
Daniel, Nancy and Moses. Moses, the father, died in 1848. 

Polly, daughter of second Moses, married Phares Gardner, 
and moved to Merrimac, where they had children. 

Jane, daughter of second Moses, married David Melville, 
of Amherst ; had no children. 

Edmund, son of second Moses, married Betsy Lovejoy, of 
Amherst, and moved to Middlesex, Mass. ; no children. 


Daniel, son of second Moses, married Nancy Bryant, of 
Deering, March, 1820, and had children, — Daniel, born at 
Boston, Aug. 30, 1821, married and moved to Lowell ; 
David M., born June 8, 1823 ; Nancy Jane, born June 26, 
1825, married Wm. Clement, Hooksett ; Caroline, born Aug. 
18, 1827; Hannah F., born June 23, 1829; Emeline, born 
Nov. 15, 1831 ; Melvinah, born March 5, 1835, died June 7, 
1843 ; Charles Franklin, born May 9, 1840. 

Nancy, daughter of second Moses, married Samuel Mel- 
ville, of Hooksett ; no children. 

Moses, son of second Moses, married Lucy Lovejoy, of 
Amherst, May, 1823, and had children, — William, George, 
Edward and Samuel. 

Hannah, daughter of first Moses, married Stephen French. 

Betsy, daughter of first Moses, married Dr. Nathan Cutler. 

Ebenezer, son of first Moses, still living, with his children, 
in this town. 

VOSE. Robert, came from Lancashire, England, about 
1638, with a company which set down in Dorchester. In 
1640, he purchased a farm in that part of Dorchester, now 
Milton, containing 140 acres. He lived to a good old age, 
and left two sons, Edward and Thomas. Edward remained 
on his father's farm, and from him descended all the Voses 
that have lived there ever since, till Col. Joseph's death, in 
1816. Col. Elijah Vose and his brother Joseph each com- 
manded a regiment in the Revolution.* 

Thomas, son of Robert, settled in Milton as a farmer, and 
was a man of note in his day. 

Henry, son of Thomas, settled in a new part of the town, 
at the lower end of Brush-hill, (so called,) where he died, 
leaving a number of sons. 

Robert, son of Henry, settled on the homestead. 

Samuel, son of Robert, moved to Bedford, married Phebe 
Vickery, and had children, — Thomas, Samuel, Robert, Fran- 
cis, John, Roger, Mercy and Phebe. Samuel first settled on 

*Col. Joseph Vose, mentioned above as belonging to another branch of this 
family, was the maternal grandfather of the present minister of Bedford. Some 
of his descendants still live, on the original farm of the first settler, in Milton. 


the river-road, near the Merrimac line. It is said he found a 
pear-tree near Sebbins'-pond, which he transplanted to what 
is known as the Vose farm. 

John, son of Samuel, distinguished as an instructor. 

Roger, son of Samuel, married, and had children, — Sam- 
uel, John, Phebe, Rachel, Jesse. Mary, Otis, Nancy, Alfred 
and Cynthia. The family moved to Spencer, New York. 

James, (Lieut.) brother of Samuel, who came with him 
from Milton, Mass., to this town, married, and had children, 
of whom is Joshua, who lives in this town. 

WALKER. Andrew, came from the north of Ireland to 
this country, lived first in Billerica, then in Tewksbury, 
where he died. He had nine children, of whom the two 
oldest, Robert and James, were born in Ireland. His chil- 
dren were, — Robert, James, Alexander, Margaret, Mary, Sa- 
rah, Nancy, Hannah and Jane. 

Robert, son of Andrew, married Rebecca Barnes, of Lon- 
donderry, by whom he had seven children, — Sarah, Han- 
nah, John, Andrew, Susannah, Jane and Robert. Sarah died 
in Bedford, aged 17 years ; Hannah died in childhood, on a 
visit at Londonderry ; John died unmarried, in 1775, 23 years 
old ; Andrew married Elizabeth Gault : Susannah married 
William Waugh ; Jane married Josiah Gordon ; Robert mar- 
ried Submit Chubbuck. Robert, the father, was born in 1708, 
died in 1777, in the 69th year of his age. 

Andrew, son of Robert, had nine children ; his sons were, 
— John, Robert, Andrew, Benjamin and Cornelius, four of 
whom were married ; two of his daughters were married, 
and are now dead. He died in 1830 aged 75. 

Jane, daughter of Robert, had three children, — Adam, 
Eliza and Jane. She died 1848, in her 90th year. 

Susannah, is still living, at the age of 92. 

Robert, youngest son of Robert, had twelve children. 
John, the oldest, and Nathan, the third, are now residing in 
Vermont. Robert died in Illinois, whither he had repaired 
with his family. Jesse died in Bedford in 1849. No chil- 
dren survive but John and Nathan. John's family consists of 
five sons and three daughters. One son is married, and lives 
in Claremont ; another is clerk in a store in that town, and a 
third is in Lowell. Two of his daughters are married, and 


live in Michigan ; the others are at home. Robert, the 
father, is now living, at an advanced age. He married twice, 
but had no children by the second wife. His first wife was 
great-aunt of Emily Chubbuck, known as Fanny Forrester, 
now Mrs. Judson, of Burmah, whose parents came to this 
town from Abington, Mass., and removed to the State of New 
York some years since. 

James, son of Andrew, who came over, was three or four 
years old when he arrived in this country. He, with his 
brother Robert, first settled the town. He cleared up his 
farm, set out an orchard, some of the trees of which are now 
standing, entertained travellers, and after his circumstances 
became easy, built a framed house, one of the first built in 
the town. His brother Robert was a great hunter. James 
was a great horseman, and had a great fondness for this noble 
animal. In one instance, a man, who like too many now-a- 
days, had very confused ideas of the distinction between 
mine and thine, stole from him a fine mare. He pursued the 
thief by a peculiar mark [figure of a pipe] on one of the 
shoes, made purposely by the blacksmith, and overtook him 
beyond Boston, where he recovered his mare. Having re- 
sided on his farm (now Josiah Walker's) till 1783, he moved 
to a small fifty acre lot in Goffstown, where he lived with his 
wife and daughter Charlotte, and his black servant Cato, till 
he died, in 1786 or 7. He married Esther, daughter of Col. 
John Gorfe, by whom he had seven children, as follows. 

Silas, who married Hannah Griffin, of Derryfield. They 
had ten children, — William, Sally, Agnes, James, John and 
Silas, (twins,) Hannah, Susan, Samuel, Cotton and Esther. 

James, who married Mary Wallace, of Bedford. They 
had eight children, — Josiah, Sally, Reuben, Polly, James, 
Rebecca, Stephen and Leonard. 

Sally, who married Joseph Moor, killed at the raising of 
Piscataquog bridge. 

Esther, who married Abraham Moor, and went to Maine. 
They had twelve children, — Sally, Deborah, Esther, Olive, 
Peggy, Samuel, Mary, Joseph, Nancy, John and Achsah. 

Jennet, who married James Wallace, and lived in Antrim. 
They had seven children, — Betsy, John, James, Sally, Ira, 
Benj. F. and Achsah. 

Mary, who married Wm. Caldwell. They had eight chil- 
dren, — Samuel Brooks Tabey, Charlotte, Mary, John Baker, 
Samuel, Phebe, Maria and Eliza, (twins.) 


Charlotte, who married Dea. James Nesmith, of Antrim ; 
no children. 

Alexander, son of Andrew, who came over, married a Cald- 

Margaret, daughter of Andrew, married Nathaniel David- 

Mary, daughter of Andrew, married Robert Davidson. 

Sarah, daughter of Andrew, died single. 

Nancy, daughter of Andrew, married James Carr, of Goffs- 

Jane, daughter of Andrew, married William Barnet, of 

Hannah, daughter of Andrew, married Francis Barnet, of 

At what time Andrew, the common ancestor, died, is not 
certain. There is now in the possession of James Walker, 
Esq., a power of attorney, dated 1739, given by Capt. James 
Walker to his father, Andrew, then living in Tewksbury, 

Robert, son of second Andrew, married Mary, daughter of 
Dea. James Wallace, by whom he had children — Greenleaf, 
born 1805; Elvira, 1807; Andrew, 1809; Mary A., 1811, 
died 1836; Josiah G., born 1813, died 1818; Robert, born 
1815 ; Sally, born 1817, died 1818. Robert, the father, died 
in 1818. 

Mary A., daughter of the above, married Wm. Manning, 
1830, by whom she had children, — Daniel W., born 1834; 
Mary A., 1836. 

Andrew, son of the above, married Mary E. Eastman, by 
whom he had children, — Helen F., born 1840; Charles A., 

Robert, son of the above, married Sophia R. Lund, by 
whom he had children, — Abby Sophia, born 1843 ; Ada Lu- 
cretia, 1849. 

Josiah, son of second James, married, Nov. 4, 1806, Nan- 
cy, daughter of James Plat, of Londonderry, by whom he had 
children, — Ellinda, (died young,) Charlotte, Josiah, William, 
Mary P., James P., Caroline, (died young,) Susan, (died 
young,) Edwin R., Harriet F. and Andrew. Josiah, the 
father, was born July 13, 1781, on his grandfather's farm, in 
the first framed house built in town. Feb. 13, 1806, he pur- 
chased said farm of Josiah Wallace, who bought out the heirs 
of Capt. James Walker, and on this farm he now resides. 


From his house, a few rods toward the river, in front of 
where the old house used to stand, there is a willow-tree, of 
very large growth, that old Capt. James Walker cut in Hav- 
erhill, Mass., for a horse-switch, and rode home with it in his 
hand, and stuck it down front of the house, where it took 
root and grew, and is now alive. Near that stands an elm, 
which he planted a century ago. It measures 12 feet round 
the trunk, and the branches extend 88 feet in diameter, or 
264 feet in circumference. 

Charlotte, daughter of Josiah, married Eleazer Dole, and 
had children. 

William, son of Josiah, born Nov. 5, 1812, married Sarah 
Richardson, Litchfield, Feb. 25, 1841, and had children, — 
Lauretta F., Henry H., Munroe, Sarah E. and Helen M. 

Mary P., daughter of Josiah, is married, and lives in Man- 

James P., son of Josiah, born Oct. 20, 1817, married 
Olivia A. Elliott, of Bath, N. H., and had children, — Caro- 
line, Louisa and Mary Ella. 

WALLACE. John, came over from Ireland in 1719, and 
was one of the grantees of Londonderry, or Nutfield. In 1721, 
he married Annis Barnet, — first couple married in London- 
derry. His family resided in Colraine, north of Ireland, as 
appears from a certificate of character given to his brother 
Thomas, who came over in 1726, and settled in the south 
part of Bedford. John appears to have been among the most 
active settlers of Londonderry. In 1729, he was selectman, 
and continued to serve till 1732, and was reelected in 1737. 
This year he was chosen town clerk, and continued in this 
office till 1742. In 1745, he was elected to represent the 
town in the General Assembly at Portsmouth. He had chil- 
dren, — James, born July 17, 1722; Rebecca, Feb. 16, 1724; 
William, Feb. 5, 1726 ; John, April 12, 1727 ; Thomas, Aug. 
10, 1730 ; Janet, Jan. 28, 1733 ; Ann, June 16, 1736 ; Sam- 
uel, Jan. 23, 1738 ; Sarah, Nov. 8, 1741. 

James, son of John and Annis, married Mary, daughter of 
Thomas Wallace. He perished in the snow, on a cold win- 
ter's night, a short distance from his own door. He had been 
out through the day with his team. He did not arrive that 


night. The next morning they found him dead. They 
had children, — Ann, born Oct. 19, 1750; Jenny, Oct. 18, 

Rebecca, daughter of John and Annis, unmarried. 
William, son of John and Annis, married Hannah, sister of 
Matthew Thornton, and had children, — John, born June 13, 
1737 ; William, Dec. 26, 175S ; Catharine, Dec. 6, 1760 ; 
James, March 31, 1763 ; Hannah, Jan. 26, 1765 ; Matthew, 
Nov. 1, 1770. 

John, son of John and Annis, married Sarah Woodburn, 
and removed to Bedford, Feb., 1756, and had children, — 
Annis, born Jan. 5, 1757 ; Mary, Oct. 8, 1758 ; James, Aug. 
8, 1760; Hannah, May 20, 1762; John, May 12, 1764; 
Thomas, June 5, 1768 ; Josiah, 1769 ; Sarah, June 13, 1771 ; 
Rebecca, Dec. 14, 1773 ; of whom Rebecca is the only one 
now living. 

Thomas, son of John and Annis, died in infancy. 

Jennet, daughter of John and Annis, married Matthew 
Dickey, Londonderry, and had children, — John, Ebenezer, 
James and Samuel. 

Ann, daughter of John and Annis, married Wm. Clark, and 
moved to New Boston. They had children, — Robert, John, 
Ninian and Rebecca. 

Samuel, son of John and Annis, married Letitia Clark, and 
had children, — Annis, Letitia, Rebecca and Sally. 

Sarah, daughter of John and Annis, married Wm. Vance ; 
no children. 

Annis, daughter of John who came to Bedford, married 
John Moore. [See Moore.] 

Mary, daughter of John, married James Walker. [See 

James, son of John, married Jennet Walker, moved to An- 
trim when a wilderness, attacked by a bear, saved himself 
by ascending a tree, was active as a town officer, and died 
lamented, in 1848, at the age of 89. He was, when 17, en- 
rolled as a soldier, and was under Stark at Bennington. He 
had children, — Betsy, John, James, Sarah W., Ira, Benj. F. 
and Achsah. 

Betsy, daughter of James, married Francis Reed. They 
have children, — Samantha, Caroline, Laura, Betsy, Louisa 
and George W. They live in Manchester. The oldest 
daughter married, and moved to New Orleans ; her husband 
dying, she returned with one child, Betsy. 


John, son of James, married Sally Page, and lives in 
Antrim. They have children, — John M., Miles N. and 

James, son of James, married Naomi Cochran, and had 
children, — Sarah J., Andrew C, James M., Charles W., 
Betsy Ann, Harriet M., Luther C, Sarah J., married, and 
soon after died, leaving no children. The family live in 

Sarah W., daughter of James, married James A. Gregg, 
had one daughter, which, with the mother, died of spotted 
fever, in 1812. 

Ira, son of James, at the age of sixteen, was a volunteer in 
the War of 1812, and died while stationed at Kittery, Maine. 

Benjamin. F., married Ann Jane Shattuck, and had chil- 
dren, — Sumner, born June 30, 1832; George F., Oct., 1833, 
died 1836 ; Marion C, born May 28, 1835 ; Henry C, dead ; 
Elizabeth S., born Nov. 8, 1838; AchsahC. ; Edwin A., born 
Aug. 8, 1844. Ann J., wife of Benj. F., died Aug 16, 1847. 
Nov. 26, 1848, he married Mary S. Butler. 

Achsah, daughter of James, died in 1829, unmarried. 

Hannah, daughter of John who came to Bedford, married 
John Patten. [See Patten.] 

John, son of John, married Tryphena Abbot, lived in An- 
trim, moved thence to Westmorland, thence to Putney, Vt., 
where they died. They had children, — John W., who died 
young; Polly, who married David Carpenter; Hannah, who 
married a Wilbur ; Cyrus, who died young ; Mosely and 
Freeman, died young ; and Margaret, unmarried. 

Thomas, son of John, married Mercy Frye, and had chil- 
dren, — Wiseman, Sophia, Cyrus W., Hannah, Frederic and 

Josiah, son of John, married Polly Goffe, and had chil- 
dren, — Roxana, born Sept. 25, 1791, who married Moses 
Davis, and lives in Concord; Theodore G., born Jan. 31, 
1795, who was in the war of 1812, and lives in Antrim ; 
Bartlett, born Aug. 6, 1797, who married Lucy Little, and 
lives in Antrim ; Samuel G., born Sept. 1, 1799, who mar- 
ried, and lives in Michigan ; Elvira, born Sept. 31, 1802, who 
married Judge Richardson, Ohio ; Nancy, born May 1, 1806, 
who married John Scoby, and lives in Ohio; John W., born 
July 15, 1802, who married Ann Brackett ; Mary Esther, 
born Nov. 14, 1809, who married Judge Woodbury, and lives 
in Antrim; Joseph, born Feb. 11, 1813, died March, 1815. 



Sarah, daughter of John, lived in Bedford, unmarried, and 
died Feb. 16, 1850. 

Rebecca, daughter of John, now lives in Manchester, GofT's 
Falls, unmarried. 

Thomas, brother of John who came over, moved to Bed- 
ford in 1753, as appears from the tax-list. He sustained 
important offices, as the town records show. He had lived 

in Londonderry, and there married Jean — . They had 

children, — Jeannet, born Dec. 11, 1733: James, Nov. 11, 
1735; Joseph, Oct. 11, 1737; William, Nov. 26, 1739; Mar- 
garet, Dec. 2, 1741; Ann, Nov. 24, 1744; John, Dec. 15, 
1746. Thomas died in 1776, aged 74. 

The following is a certificate of character. 

" The bearer hereof, Thomas Wallace, has lived in this 
congregation, from his infancy to the date hereof, and has 
always behaved soberly and honestly, and is now free from 
all public scandal known to this session, is certified by 

" Robert Higginbotham. 

" Coleraine, May 9, 1726." 

James, son of Thomas, married Molly Linn, and had chil- 
dren, — Anna, born Jan. 9, 1772; Betsy, Sept. 14, 1774; 
Mary, Jan. 15, 1777; Thomas, April 25, 1779; James, July 
15, 1785 ; Sarah Orr, July 25, 1788. 

Joseph, son of Thomas, married Mary Scoby, and had chil- 
dren, — Thomas, born Oct. 2, 1770 ; Jane, June 2, 1772 ; 
Mary Ann, May 17, 1774; John, April 20, 1776; Joseph, 
April 19, 1778; Susanna, April 2, 1780; Martha, Sept. 11, 

Margaret, daughter of Thomas, married George Orr. [See 

Ann, daughter of Thomas, (unmarried,) died in 1825, 
aged 81. 

John, son of Thomas, married Isabella Witherspoon, and 
had children, — Robert, born July 25, 1779 ; Samuel, March 
22, 1781; Andy, Nov. 21, 1782; Janet, Oct. 1, 1704, Isaac, 
Aug. 17, 1786 ; Polly, Thomas and George O. 



J9r. P. P. Woodbury's Residence. 

WOODBURY. John, one of the original settlers of Bev- 
erly, Mass. He came from Somersetshire, England, and 
arrived in New England in 1624, under direction of the Dor- 
chester Company, established at Cape Ann about that time. 
He came to Salem in 1626, and was an original member of 
the first church in Salem. He was made freeman in 1635, 
and in 1635 was chosen Deputy to the General Court. In 
1635, he received a grant of 200 acres of land on Bass river. 
He died in 1640. The grant runs as follows. 

" 4th of the 11th month, (Jan.) 1635. That Capt. (Wil- 
liam) Trask, Jno. Woodbury, Mr. Conant, Peter Palfrey and 
John Balch, are to have five farms, each 200 acres a peise, to 
forme in all a thousand acres of land together, lyeing and 
being at the head of Bass river, 124 poles in breadth, and soe 


runin northerly to the river by the great pond side and soe in 
breadth, making up the full quantity of a thousand acres, 
these being laid out and surveyed by us, 

John Woodbury, 
John Balch." 

Palfrey never settled on his grant. He removed to Read- 
ing, where he died, July 15, 1663. 

Humphrey, son of the above, born in 1609, came over with 
his father, was admitted to the church in 1648, and was a 
member of the first church in Beverly at its formation, 
chosen deacon in 1668, and was living in 1681. 

Peter, son of Humphrey, born in 1640, made freeman in 
1668, elected representative in 1689, filled the office of dea- 
con, and died July 5, 1704, aged 64. 

Josiah, son of Peter, born in Beverly, June 15, 1602, and 
lived in the second or upper parish. 

Peter, son of Josiah, born March 28, 1738, at Beverly ; 
married there, and in 1773, removed to Mt. Vernon, then a 
part of Amherst, N. H. The last twenty years of his life he 
spent at Antrim, with his youngest son, Mark Woodbury, 
Esq., where he died, March, 1819, aged 85. 

Peter, son of the above Peter, was born at Beverly, Mass., 
in 1767, removed to New Hampshire with his father, settled 
at Francestown, where he engaged in mercantile and agri- 
cultural pursuits. He was about fifteen years representative, 
and two years senator, in the State Legislature, and was a 
Justice of the Peace and of the Quorum about forty years. 
He married Mary, daughter of James Woodbury, who re- 
moved from Beverly to Mt. Vernon, N. H., in 1782. James 
was a subaltern in Col. Rob. Roger's regiment of Rangers, 
and was near Wolfe when he fell at the storming of Quebec. 
The sword he used in that service is now in the possession 
of a descendant. He had nine children, all of them daugh- 
ters, and died at Francestown, March, 1823, aged 86. 

Peter P., was son of the above, and born at Francestown, 
Aug. 8, 1791. He married, in 1818, Mary Riddle, daughter 
of Wm. Riddle, Esq. She died in April, 1819. Aug. 24, he 
married Martha, sister of the above, by whom he had six 
children, — Peter Trask, graduated at Dartmouth College in 
1839, now attorney at law, New York City ; William Riddle, 
graduated at Dartmouth College in 1843, attorney at Sheboy- 
gan, Wisconsin; Adonijah Howe, died Feb., 1828, of Hydro- 


ceptralus, aged four years ; Mary Jane, died May, 1841, of 
scrofula, aged fifteen ; Levi Jackson, now in the study of 
medicine ; Freeman Perkins, in mercantile business in New 
York City. Martha, Dr. Woodbury's second wife, died in 
1832. Oct., 1832, he married Eliza Bailey, daughter of Jo- 
siah Gordon, Esq., Bedford, N. H., by whom he had, — 
Josiah Gordon, now preparing for College ; Martha Riddle, 
George Edwin, Charles Howe, now under the paternal roof. 

The brothers and sisters of Dr. Woodbury are, — Hon. 
Levi Woodbury, L. L. D., now associate Justice of the U. S. 
Supreme Court ; Rev. James Trask Woodbury, Acton, Mass., 
formerly attorney at law ; Jesse Woodbury, Esq.. living on the 
homestead at Francestown, N. H. ; George Washington Wood- 
bury, M. D., Yazoo County, Miss. ; Mrs. Mary Howe, widow 
of the late Luke Howe, M. D.. Jaffrey, N. H. ; Mrs. Anstris 
B. Eastman, wife of Hon. Nehemiah Eastman, of Farmington, 
N. H., formerly member of Congress ; Mrs. Martha W. Grimes, 
Gtuincy, Mass., widow of the late Thomas Grimes, merchant, 
Windsor, Vt. ; Mrs. Hannah T. Barnes, wife of Isaac O. 
Barnes, Esq., of Boston, Clerk U. S. Court for Mass. ; Mrs. 
Harriet Dodge, wife of Perley Dodge, Esq., Clerk to Superior 
Court, and attorney at law, Amherst, N. H. ; Mrs. Adeline 
Bunnell, wife of Edwin F. Bunnell, of Boston, merchant. 

Dr. Woodbury was prepared for College, in part, under the 
instruction of the Hon. John Vose, the distinguished Pre- 
ceptor of Atkinson Academy, N. H., and James Morrison, 
Esq., (late Mayor of Savannah, Ga.,) at Francestown Acade- 
my. In 1812, he commenced the study of medicine with 
Adonijah Howe, M. D., his brother-in-law, at Jaffrey, N. H. 
The next year, he put himself under the care of Nathan 
Smith, M. D., at Hanover, N. H., Dartmouth College. In a 
few months, Dr. Smith removed to New Haven, Conn., Yale 
College, and Dr. Woodbury accompanied him, and attended 
the first course of medical lectures given at Yale College, of 
six months continuance. The medical professors were, Na- 
than Smith, Eli Ives, Benj. Silliman and Jonathan Knight. 
He returned to New Hampshire in 1818, and put himself 
under the care of Hon. Jonathan Gove, of Goffstown, where 
he closed his medical studies, after attending a second course 
of lectures at Dartmouth College in the fall of 1814. He 
commenced the practice of his profession in partnership with 
his preceptor, Dr. Gove, at Goffstown, Jan. 9, 1815. Here 
he continued to practice medicine till July 3, 1815, when he 


removed to Bedford. He has been President of the New 
Hampshire Medical Society, and a Delegate from that Soci- 
ety to attend the examination of candidates for M. D. at 
Dartmouth College. In 1845, he received the degree of M. 
D. from that College. He has been President of the South- 
ern District New Hampshire Medical Society, and President 
of the Hillsborough County Agricultural Society. 

Boston, 15th Nov., 1850. 
My Dear Sir : — 

You ask me what information I can furnish as to the origin 
of the Woodbury family of New England. In reply, I have 
to state that, during the past summer, I had the pleasure, in 
company with your nephew, Charles Levi Woodbury, Esq., 
of this city, of spending a few days in the County of Devon- 
shire, England, the place from which your remote ancestors 
undoubtedly emigrated. The name of Woodbury is now 
very rare in England. It is not to be found at all in that 
great omnium gatherum of names, the London Post-Offlce 
Directory, nor in any other catalogue of names in the English 
metropolis, that I saw. In the city of Exeter, we found two 
families, one, that of Thomas Woodbury, Esq., and the other 
that of his son. Thomas, now somewhat advanced in life, 
is a very intelligent and well educated man. He has been 
for many years the editor and proprietor of a leading news- 
paper in Exeter. He is now living much at his ease ; as is 
his son, who has already earned a competency of the good 
things of this world, and is amusing himself with agricultural 
pursuits and experiments. He was busy, when we met him, 
in managing an immense collection of hives of bees, whose 
industry he was endeavoring to turn to better account. Inde- 
pendent of all tradition and records, the strong family 
resemblance to the Woodburys on this side of the Atlantic, in 
these gentlemen, left no doubt that you are all of the same 
origin. Thomas Woodbury was born in Urfculme, Devon. 
He, however, knew of no family except his own and his 
father's now living in that town, or in the county. There 
were, he said, some of the same name in Dorsetshire and 

Six miles south-east of Exeter, is the town of Woodbury. 
We found here a small village, in the centre of which was an 


old gray stone church, perfectly preserved, which has stood 
in its present position for at least three or four centuries. 
This church, or rather the right of presentation to it, is under 
the control of the cathedral in Exeter. It has no rector. 
The curate, Rev. John L. Fulford, was, unluckily for us, 
absent. We could not, therefore, have access to the records 
of which he has the sole custody. The person who con- 
ducted us to and through the church, upon being asked as to 
the Puseyism of Woodbury, declared that the people were 
all low church, while the curates of this place and the neigh- 
borhood were said to be of the high church party. 

Tablets and ancient monuments to the memory of the 
dead, abounded in the interior of the church. In a small 
chapel, in one corner, were full length marble figures repre- 
senting Lord Chief Justice Pollexfen, of the Common Pleas, 
and his lady. In the burying-ground around, were names 
familiar to New England men. All but the name, which 
you would expect to find first of all, Woodbury. Of this 
last, there were none. Nor are there any of that name now 
living in the town, although all agreed that the town was 
undoubtedly named from some of its former residents. 

The landlord of the snug little inn, the " White Hart" 
where we stopped for refreshment, seemed to sympathize 
with my young friend and companion in his disappointment, 
in not rinding more satisfactory evidence of the former resi- 
dence of his ancestors in the place which bore their name, 
and endeavored to console him in some way, and finally, by 
offering a bottle of genuine Devonshire cider, which he in- 
sisted we should carry away. The bottle was accepted, and, 
with its contents, is now safely deposited in the cellar of one 
of your relatives. I hope the Bedford temperance society 
will grant you a dispensation, so that you may have the 
pleasure of tasting this beverage of your ancestors. 

Woodbury is not only a township in Devonshire, but it is 
one of the ancient divisions of that County, called a " Hun- 
dred." It lies between the river Ex and the British Channel. 
In the easterly part of it, is " Woodbury Common" a large 
tract of land, very high, and covered with heather, in full 
bloom, when we saw it. From this Common, we had a fine 
view of the Dartmoor Hills, towering up in the west ; and, 
looking in an easterly direction, we could see, in full view, a 
long section of the British Channel. Adjoining this Common, 
is the town of Budleigh, the birth-place of Sir Walter Hal- 


eigh. The house, in which this famous but unlucky knight 
was born, is still standing. Budleigh is the name which 
the people of Beverly, Mass., so much desired should have 
been substituted for that by which their town is now called. 
This is further evidence of the Devonshire origin of your 

I remain, as ever, faithfully yours, 

Dr. P. P. Woodbury, Bedford, N. H. 



Page 123. The taking of Montreal is thus noticed by 
Russell, in his "History of Modern Europe." 

" In the meantime, Gen. Amherst was diligently employed 
in taking measures for the utter subversion of the French 
power in that part of the new world. 

" He conveyed instructions to Gen. Murray, directing him 
to advance by water to Montreal, with all the troops that 
could be spared from the garrison of Quebec ; and Col. Hav- 
iland, by like orders, sailed with a detachment from Crown 
Point, and took possession of Isle Aux Noix, which he found 
abandoned by the enemy, and thence proceeded directly for 
Montreal : while the commander-in-chief, with his own 
division, consisting of about 10,000 regulars and provincials, 
left the frontiers of New York, and advanced to Oswego. 
There he was joined by 1000 Indians of the Six Nations, 
under Sir Wtn. Johnson. 

" Amherst embarked on Lake Ontario, with his whole 
army ; and after taking the fort of Isle Royale, which in a 
manner commanded the source of the river St. Lawrence, he 
arrived, by a tedious and dangerous voyage, at Montreal, on 
the same day that Gen. Murray landed near that place from 
Q-uebec. The two generals met with no opposition in dis- 
embarking their troops, and, by a happy concurrence of cir- 
cumstances, Col. Haviland, with the detachment under his 
command, arrived next day. 

" The junction of these three bodies, composed of the 
flower of the British forces in North America, and the masterly 
dispositions made by the commanders, convinced Vaudreuil 
that all resistance would be ineffectual. He, therefore, de- 
manded a capitulation, which was granted, Sept. 8, on terms 



more favorable than he had reason to expect in such circum- 

" Montreal, Detroit, Michilemackenac, and every other 
place possessed by the French, with the government of Can- 
ada, was surrendered to his Britanic Majesty. But it was 
stipulated that the troops should be transported to Old France ; 
and the Canadians were secured in their property, and in the 
free exercise of their religion." 

Page 130. As there may be a desire to see the names of 
all the Signers of the Association Test, the list is here given, 
in the order in which they stand on the paper. 

John Wallace, Jr., 
James Caldwell, 
Wm. Caldwell, 
James Matthews, 
John Harrison, 
John Aiken, 
Adam Dickey, 
Matthew Patten, 
John GofTe, 
Daniel Moor, 
John Moor, Jr., 
Thomas Matthews, 
Robert Griffin, 
John Burns, 
Robert Burns, 
Wm. Burns, 
John Brien, 
Wm. Moor, 
James Houston, 
John McKinney, 
Asa Barnes, 
Samuel Terrill, Jr., 
Wm. Kenndy, 
Robert Morrel, 
Andrew Walker, 
Nathaniel Patterson, 
Robert Matthews, 
' James Vose. 
George Comeray, 

Hugh Campbell, 
James McAllister, 
John McLaughlin, 
John Gardner, 
Amaziah Pollard, 
James Steel, 
James Aiken, 
Whitfield Gilmore, 
James Smith, 
John Orr, 
Barnabas Cain, 
John Moor, 
James Wallace, 
James Mardin, 
John Goffe, Jr., 
John Riddle, 
Samuel Patten, 
John Boies, 
James Lyon, 
John Bell, 
John Wallace, 
Robert Walker, 
James Walker, 
Patrick Larkin, 
John Vickary. 
Wm. MtCleary, 
Joseph Bell, 
Samuel Fugard, 
Thomas V. Vose, 

James Carnes, 
Samuel Patten, 
Hugh Orr, 
John Mcintosh, 
Jacob McQuaid, 
James Westly, 
John Little, 
Thomas Gault, 
Thomas Boies, 
Samuel Vose, 
William White, 
Joseph Wallace, 
Lt. John Moor, 
Joseph Houston, 
Daniel Moor, 
James Gilman, 
William Moor, 
David McClary, 
James Patterson, 
Matthew McDuffie, 
Thomas McLaughlin, 
Benjamin Smith, 
Zechariah Chandler, 
Richard McAllister, 
John Smith, 
James Little, 
Stephen French. 

Page 154. Extract from Rev. Mr. McGregor's sermon on 
the death of Mrs. Riddle. The occasion of it is thus stated : 

" Sermon delivered at the funeral of Mrs. Ann Riddle, 
whose death was occasioned by her horse falling with her to 


the ground, at her own door ; she survived the fatal injury- 
she had received in consequence of the fall, scarcely an hour, 
when death came, cut asunder the slender thread of life, and 
closed the melancholy scene." 

The text is : — " Truly as the Lord liveth and as thy soul 
liveth, there is but a step between me and death." 

After an introduction and remarks on the text, the sermon 

"Last Thursday, at Mr. Bell's funeral, you will doubtless 
remember that I endeavored to enforce the duty of watchful- 
ness, in the way of habitual and actual preparation for death, 
from these words, ' Watch, therefore, for ye know not the 
hour your Lord doth come.' Mrs. Riddle was then present ; 
but could she have supposed that she had not twenty-two 
hours to live ? could she have supposed it more than any 
other person, who was there present that day ? Was not her 
health as firm, and had she not as good grounds, to all appear- 
ance, to presume on a few years of time, as any person has, 
who is here this day ? Yet, how short the transition from 
life to death ! And how applicable were the words of our 
text that day, to her situation ! For one moment gave the 
cruel wound, one hour sealed her eyes in death, and she shall 
not awake from this sleep of a temporal death, until the 
heavens are no more. 

" But O ! the dismal scene of that distressing hour, which 
numbered her with the dead ! All motionless she lay for a 
time, while every possible exertion was made for her relief 
and restoration. At length, she opened her eyes, which 
seemed to yield a faint ray of hope to her surrounding family 
and friends. She then lifted her hands in devotion ; and 
after having, in broken accents, supplicated mercy, and com- 
mitted her soul to her God, her strength failed ; she stretched 
herself upon the bed, and breathed her last, without a strug- 
gle and without a groan." 

Towards the close of the sermon, the mourners are thus 

" I shall now close the discourse, by an address to the 
relations and friends of the deceased. And to you, dear Sir, 
the husband of the deceased, I would observe, that your pros- 
pects, last Friday morning, were very different from your 
prospects and expectations that day fifteen years before. Fif- 
teen years ago, last Friday morning, you doubtless beheld 


the partner of your joys, with raptures of delight, as the 
mother of your first-born ; and it was then you doubtless began 
to flatter yourself, with the pleasing prospect of a rising fam- 
ily ; but O ! Sir, little did you think on that joyful occasion, 
that you should behold the darling of your bosom, exactly at 
the close of fifteen years from that time, lying a lifeless 
corpse, by such a sudden, surprising and unexpected stroke 
of divine providence. 

" The companion of your bosom is gone. She whose ten- 
der care and watchfulness over your children seemed to 
protect them from harm, she whose prudence, industry and 
skill secured your interest, she who was always generous 
without profusion, and always friendly without affected fond- 
ness ; she who was benevolent and hospitable, without osten- 
tation, who could rationally rejoice with those who rejoiced, 
and feelingly weep with those who wept ; And finally she, 
whose greatest pride was to make you comfortable and happy, 
is no more. She sleeps in death ; and though dead, yet she, 
as a silent monitor, informs you, there is but a step between 
you and death." 

After addressing the children, the parents of the deceased 
are thus exhorted. 

" To you, the parents of the deceased, I may say, with 
peculiar application, there is but a step between you and 
death. You are now both advanced in years, you doubtless 
begin to feel your journey in your bones. Last week, one of 
you was called upon to lay a brother, and this day, the other, 
a daughter in the grave. You see, then, that aged and mid- 
dle-aged are laid in the dust ; according to the course of 
nature, your step towards death, is almost accomplished ; be 
ye therefore also ready, for in such an hour as ye think not, 
the Son of man cometh." 

Page 158. There was a Thomas Savage in Virginia as 
early as 1624, as appears by the Census of the Colony, taken 
that year, probably the first American Census. This ancient 
and valuable record is thus alluded to by the " Washington 

" We have seen no work, which will be more interesting 
to the historian and antiquary, none which throws so much 
light upon the customs and condition of the country, at so 


early a period. Those skilful in genealogy, or interested in 
foreign inheritances, will no doubt examine the work with 
pleasure. We find many curious terms appropriated to the 
period. Among the arms are 'snappances,' (flint locks) 
'matchlocks,' and ' petronels,' The armor consists of 'coats 
of mail,' 'head-pieces,' ' buffe-coats,' ' steele-coats' and 'cors- 
lets.' We observe the muster of 'ancient (ensign) Thomas 
Savage,' &c. The aggregate population of Virginia was in 
1624, according to this Census, about 6000." 

The following is a brief extract from Dr. Willard's sermon, 
alluded to on page 156. 

" And now God calls us again to further occasion of deep 
consideration by the awful hand of his in the sudden and 
unexpected departure of this precious one from us, and that 
at such a time as this. I know he was gathered to his peo- 
ple in a good old age and full of days. He lived long enough 
for himself; but he died too soon for us." 

Page 170. The following is the close of the sermon de- 
lived at the Dedication of the Presbyterian meeting-house, 
Dec. 25, 1832. 

" Very soon after the settlement became an incorporated 
town, a house was built for the worship of God ; and there, 
for nearly eighty years, the fathers and the mothers have 
worshipped through successive generations, down to the 
present time. 

" God has favored the town with a good degree of temporal 
blessings. No wasting sickness has thinned its population. 
The earth has annually rewarded the industrious with its 
fruits. A spirit of harmony has generally prevailed, and to a 
happy extent, the love of order and sobriety. Its sons have 
gone forth to almost all parts of our land, they have filled the 
various learned professions, and some of them have been and 
still are, the honored instruments of winning souls to Christ. 

" God has granted seasons of spiritual prosperity. This 
vine which was early planted, he has visited and watered ; 
and the last year, especially, will be remembered, I trust, in 
eternity by many, as the happy year of their espousals to 

" The present, beloved friends, may well be with you a 
time of tender recollection and of bright anticipation. You 


have been permitted to erect a new and commodious edifice 
for the worship of God. No adverse event has interrupted 
the progress of the work — no accident has occurred to cause 
a moment's gloom ; and by the help of God, it is now brought 
to a happy completion. 

" On this auspicious day, (Christmas,) a day on which 
multitudes, in all parts of the Christian world, have repaired 
to their places of worship, to pour forth their gratitude for 
spiritual mercies ; a day that commemorates the first dawn of 
that light, which is now spreading throughout the world, we 
come with our humble offering, we come to dedicate this 
temple to God. 

" To Him, then, and to his service, we now devote this 
building. We dedicate this altar to the cause of truth and 
righteousness. Here, may the messages of mercy come 
warm from the heart. Here, may a holy unction descend, 
from Sabbath to Sabbath, on those who shall minister in this 
sacred place. 

" To Him we consecrate these pews, now filled with atten- 
tive hearers. Ever sacred may they be to the worship of 
God, sacred henceforth to meditation, prayer and holy resolve. 
We dedicate yonder seats, devoted to the singing of his 
praise ; these walls, this house, we dedicate to Father, Son 
and blessed Spirit. 

" Holy, ever holy, be this, as was the place, where Jacob 
wrestled with the angel of the covenant. 

" Here may the God of the fathers manifest himself the 
God of the children, and the children's children, until time 
shall lay his hand on this now goodly edifice, and this house, 
like all things else on earth, shall be mouldering to decay. 

" And when the Lord shall write up his people, may it be 
found that multitudes were born here to glory. 

" ' Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy 
palaces. For my brethren and companions' sake, I will now 
say, Peace be within thee.' 

" And while we dedicate this temple to God, let us remem- 
ber that he hath said, ' The heaven is my throne and the 
earth is my footstool. Where is the house that ye build unto 
me, and where is the place of my rest ? For all these things 
hath mine hand made, and all these things have been, saith 
the Lord ; but to this man will I look, even to him that is 
poor and of a contrite spirit, and that trembleth at my word.' 


Let us give ourselves to God, let us each become a temple 
for the residence of his holy spirit." 

Page 181. Under the head of Casualties, it should be 
stated that three men have been killed in this town by the 
fall of a tree. Mr. Cochran, many years ago, in the north 
part of the town ; Mr. Phineas Campbell, in 1S45, and Capt. 
John Patten, Jan. 31, 1851. 

Page 187, fifth line from top. " Martin's expenses and 
mine, there, were £5," probably the old tenor currency. 
The Spanish dollar, in sterling currency, was less than 6 
shillings ; in old tenor, 25 shillings ; in lawful money, 6 
shillings. On the subject of currency, we find the following 
in "Ames' Almanac" for 1760. 

" The old tenor bills which pass in Rhode Island and New 
Hampshire, are precarious as to the value in gold and silver. 
New Hampshire lawful money is fixed at sterling bills at the 
rate of 45. bd. a dollar." 

In the same almanac. Ames give the origin of the term 
" Sterling." as applied to money. 

" The Germans, because of their easterly dwelling from the 
English, were called ' Esterlings.' Some of whom dwelling 
in England, first of all stamped a pure coin, which, from 
them, was called ' Esterling' money ; and now leaving out 
the initial letter E., it is called Sterling money." 

Nathaniel Ames, whose almanacs were so celebrated one 
hundred years ago, was a man of considerable note in his day. 
In his " Almanac for 175S," there is a singular prediction, 
which, in a work of this kind, it may not be improper to 

" The curious have observed that the progress of humane 
literature (like the sun) is from the east to the west. Thus 
has it travelled through Asia and Europe, and now is arrived 
at the eastern shore of America. As the celestial light of 
the gospel was directed here by the finger of God, it will 
doubtless finally drive the long night of heathenish darkness 
from America. So arts and sciences will change the face of 
nature in their tour from hence over the Apalachian moun- 



tains to the Western ocean ; and as they march through the 
vast desert, the residence of wild beasts will be broken up, 
and their obscene howl cease forever. The rocks will dis- 
close their hidden gems, and the inestimable treasures of gold 
and silver be broken up. Huge mountains of iron ore are 
already discovered, and vast stores are reserved for future 
generations. This metal, more useful than gold or silver, 
will employ millions of hands, not only to form the martial 
sword and peaceful share, alternately ; but an infinity of 
utensils, improved in the exercise of art and handicraft among 
men. Nature, through all her works, has stamped authority 
on this law, namely, ' That all fit matter shall be improved to 
its best purposes. 1 Shall not then those vast quarries, that 
teem with mechanic stone, those for structure, be piled into 
great cities; and those for sculpture, into statues to perpetu- 
ate the honor of renowned heroes ; even those who shall 
now save their country. 

"Of ye unborn inhabitants of America f should this page 
escape its destined conflagration, and these alphabetical let- 
ters remain legible ; when your eyes behold the su7i, after he 
has rolled the seasons round for 2 or 3 centuries more, you 
will know that in Anno Domini 1758 we dream/ d of your 

Page 190, fourth line from bottom. Ezra Baldwin was a 
great hypochondriac, and as such persons often are, was noted 
for whimsical oddities. Our MSS. Poem, from which we 
have more than once borrowed, gives him a niche among 

its worthies. 

" They used to say the Gout and Spleen 
Oft in his company were seen ; 
The only way bis friends could do, 
To bre.ik it up and bring him to, 
W;is to get him lo take a ride, 
Then, leave the road great way one side, 
And over the hillocks, stone-heaps steer, 
Till he began to cry ' dear.' 
This made his anger wildly rise, 
And as he echoed forth his cries, 
He quite forgot his hypo hours, 
Which all ubsorb'd Ins mental powers. 
This remedy, being often tried, 
Bid Hypo stand, as one defied." 


Page 306. The Goffe family is supposed by some to be 
collaterally descended from Wm. Goffe, one of the Judges 
who condemned King Charles 1st. It should, however, be 
said that Goffe was a more common name at that period than 
at present. The name of John Goffe is found on the records 
of Dr. Increase Mather's church, in Boston, as early as 1670, 
and it was not till 1660 that Maj. Gen. Wm. Goffe arrived at 
Boston, in his flight from England, in company with Wlialley 
and Dixwell. 

It may here be remarked, as their names have been intro- 
duced, that these regicides were received kindly by Gov. 
Endicott, and resided at Cambridge till Feb., 1661, when the 
intelligence reached them that they were not included in the 
act of indemnity. 

They then removed to New Haven, Ct., and were con- 
cealed by the principal inhabitants. They afterwards resided 
for some time on West Rock, (a high bluff near New Haven,) 
and in the neighboring towns. 

But in 1664, they removed to Hadley, Mass., and remained 
concealed fifteen or sixteen years in the house of Rev. Mr. 
Russell. When the Indians attacked the town in 1675, and 
threw the inhabitants, assembled for public worship, into 
great confusion ; Goffe, who was entirely unknown to them, 
white with age, his flowing gray locks, with a commanding 
aspect, and clothed in an unusual dress, suddenly presented 
himself among them, and encouraging them by his exhorta- 
tions, placed himself at their head, and by his military skill 
secured them the victory. 

The battle had scarcely terminated, when the mysterious 
stranger disappeared ; and the people, alike ignorant of the 
place whence he came, and of his retreat, regarded him as an 
angel sent for their deliverance. 

There is a story told of Goffe, that while at Boston, some 
years after, on a visit, he met with an old friend, who did not 
recognize him. The Englishman, being somewhat of a 
braggard, declared there was not a man in America that 
could wield the sword with him. Goffe seized a broomstick, 
and in a few minutes disarmed the hero, by knocking his 
sword out of his hand. The Englishman immediately re- 
plied, " You are Whalley, Goffe, or the Devil." 


Page 320. Of Miss Ann Orr, who has been repeatedly- 
alluded to, as a successful teacher for half a century, it should 
be added, she was born Sept. 21, 1782, and died, Nov., 1849. 
Towards the close of her useful life, her scholars, in various 
parts of the country, united in making her a valuable present, 
as a token of their high regard. 


Page 98, seventeen lines from top of page, instead of " blended trees," 
read "blended hues." 

Page 98, twenty-two lines from top, instead of narrow, read wide, as Lati- 
folia imports. It should however be said, that the leaf is narrow, compared 
with most leaves, but wide, compared with Kalmia Angustifolia, another spe- 
cies of the laurel, a poisonous bush, commonly called "kill-lamb." 

Page 198, between paragraphs on Dr. Wallace and Dr. Beard, insert, "Dr. 
Paul Tenney came to Bedford in 1810, and remained till 1815." 

Page 208, twelve lines from top, instead of " Dea. Stephen Thurston," 
read " Dea. John Houston." 

Page 212, in the marriages for 1842, should be inserted " Hugh R. French 
and Mary J. Shepard." 

Page 264, eight lines from bottom, for external, read eternal. 

Page 271, four lines from bottom, for canon, read cannon. 

Page 289, eleven lines from bottom, for Jumes, read James. 

Page 302, eighteen lines from bottom, for Elia, read Celia. 

974. 2T 


A fine of Two Cents will be charged for each day the 
book is kept overtime. 


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