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P/\f^isH LINE. 

L0T5 26,27.28, ' 

74, 73, \ 78 

giVeN tot^e 
F\S7 Settlef^s. 

M 1 N OT 







By REV. ^W. R. B^RENCH, 33. ID. 





T^ F7 


Plan of Turner frontispiece 

The First Meeting-house 35 

House where Hon . Eugene Hale was born ... 83 

Portrait of Hon. Eugene Hale 85 

Mr. Keene's Chair Factory and Hotel .... 91 

Mrs. Irish's Hotel 169 




The "Propriety" 1 

Karnes of the Proprietors 5 

Mills Built 22 

Settlers in 1779 30 

Meeting-house Built 35 

Rev. John Strickland Settled 38 

Town Incorporated 40 

Family Sketches 41 

Location of the Early Settlers 66 

Turner Tillage 74 

Turner Center 83 

North Turner 88 

Keen's Mills 91 

Chase's Mills 93 

North Turner 95 

North Turner Bridge 98 

Surface, Soil, and Products 100 

North Turner Cheese Factory 103 

Turner Center Dairying Association 103 

Post-oflSces and Mail Routes 105 

Congregational Parish 110 

The Baptist Society 118 

The Universalist Parish . • 125 

The Methodist Church 137 

Meeting-houses 138 

Ministerial and School Funds 140 

Marriages Solemnized by Rev. John Strickland . . 159 

Marriages Solemnized by Ichabod Bonney, Esq. . . 163 


Taverns 166 

Schools 169 

Physicians 171 

Lawyers 178 

The First Organ 180 

Turner Grange, No. 23, Patrons of Husbandry . . 181 

Masonic Organizations 182 

Odd Fellows 185 

Temperance Organizations 185 

Cemeteries . . 186 

War Eecord. Soldiers in the Kevolution .... 195 

War of 1812 196 

The Aroostook War 197 

War of the Kebellion 199 

Annals 206 

The Centennial Celebration 259 

The Procession . 295 

Address of Welcome. Dr. J. T. Cushing . . . 264 

Centennial Poem. Mrs. Caroline W. D. Rich . . . 268 

Hon. Washington Gilbert's Address .... 279 

Judge Wilson's Address 293 

Hon. E. B. Washburn's Address 299 

Speech of Ex-Governor Merrill of Iowa .... 301 

" Clarence Hale, Esq 305 

" Col. F. M. Drew 307 

" Dr. Kendall Kewhall 308 

" Orin Bearce, Esq., of Missouri . . . 308 

" Solon Chase, Esq 310 

" Daniel Lara, Esq 311 

" Hon. Rufus Prince 312 

The Great Stone Mortar 312 



This work was undertaken by the urgent solicitation of others, 
knowing something of the diflBculties that must be encountered, 
and of the tax upon the time and strength which were all needed 
for other labors. But it seemed desirable that the history of the 
town should be written, as the celebration of its Centennial would 
awaken a special interest in it; and as no other came to mind 
who could conveniently attend to it, the work was reluctantly 
undertaken. Dr. Timothy Howe wrote a history of the town, 
which he left in manuscript; this has furnished much valuable 
information which it would be diflBicult, if not impossible, to gain 
now. The writer of this has been largely indebted to him, and 
wishes to make suitable acknowledgments. The records of the 
Proprietors of the Township have been carefully consulted, as 
also the Records of the Town from the date of its incorporation, 
and the Records and Papers in the State House, Boston. Items 
of information have been gleaned from histories of towns, and 
other publications; and several elderly people have contributed 
from the stores of memory, items of interest which have added 


value to these pages. Some facts have been learned by corres- 
pondence with people in other towns, and no available source of 
infoi-mation known to the author has been neglected, in hope of 
thus making the history as complete and reliable as possible. 
An effort has been made to condense the history into the compass 
of a small volume, which could be furnished at a moderate cost; 
and no illustrations have been employed except the plan of the 
town and such as have been furnished by interested parties, since, 
though adding to the interest, they would add much to the ex- 
pense. Great changes have been wrought since our fathers made 
for themselves homes in the wilderness, where we now dwell in 
the midst of comforts which were denied to them; and instruction 
and benefit may be gained by looking upon them, and noting 
their manner of life in those early times. The burden of labor 
in compiling this history has been lightened by the pleasure found 
in the more intimate acquaintance with the life, customs, and 
fortunes of the early settlers ; and the reward of effort will consist 
largely in adding to the enjoyment, pleasure, and information of 
the reader. 

TV. R. F. 



The town of Turner lies on the left bank of 
the Androscoggin River, in about 44° 15' north 
latitude. It is bounded, southerly, by the city of 
Auburn and the town of Minot, five and a half 
miles ; westerly, by Hebron, Buckfield, and Hart- 
ford, ten miles and one hundred and eighty rods ; 
northerly, by Livermore, three miles and two 
hundred and fifty rods; and easterly, by the Andro- 
scoggin River. Leeds and Greene are adjoining 
towns on the right bank of the river. It originally 
constituted a part of Cumberland County, was 
afterward embraced in Oxford County, but, in 1842, 
became a part of Androscoggin County, which 
was at that time created out of several adjoining 

The township was originally granted to the heirs 
and assigns of Captain Joseph Sylvester and his 
company, for military services, rendered in the 
invasion of Canada, under Sir William Phipps, in 
1690. Mr. Dean, in his history of Scituate, gives 
this account of the Sylvester family : " Richard 


Sylvester, the father of Captain Joseph, lived in 
Weymouth in 1633, where he acquired an unfortu- 
nate notoriety by espousing certain religious opin- 
ions too liberal for the age in which he lived. 
Mr. Robert Lenthal, his minister at Weymouth, 
advanced the sentiment, " that all baptized persons 
should be admitted to the communion without 
further trial." {Magnolia, /., 222,) This was a 
heresy, to be noticed by Government, and he was 
ordered to retract in presence of the General Court, 
with which order he complied. But Richard Syl- 
vester, who held the same sentiments, still adhered 
to his own opinion, and, in consequence of so doing, 
was fined and disfranchised by the Government. 
This put him upon removing from the colony, and 
he came to Scituate in 1642. Joseph, who was his 
third son, settled also in Scituate, and had a farm 
on Church Hill in 1664." 

Joseph Sylvester, of Cumberland County, Maine, 
married Lucy Wade in 1788. He lived at a place 
-called Front's Gore. 

Joseph commanded a company under the famous 
Colonel Church, in his eastern expedition against 
the Indians in 1689. The next year he raised a 
company, sixteen of which belonged to Scituate, 
and many of whom never returned, and joined in 
the enterprise undertaken by Sir William Phipps, 
against the French possessions of Port Royal and 


Quebec. In this campaign, Israel Chittenden was 
his lieutenant, and John Stetson, ensign. This 
enterprise proved disastrous and fatal to the brave 
Captain Sylvester, and many of his men. The his- 
torian, before quoted, says of them : " Many nun- 
cupative wills were entered, and proved in the Pro- 
bate Court Plymouth County, and that among the 
number was that of Captain Sylvester himself. 
This will was proved by the testimony of three of 
his soldiers, Benjamin Stetson, John Perry, and 
William Perry, and reads thus : ' I give all my land 
at Hugh's Cross to my son Joseph ; the three 
younger sons to be provided for by their mother, 
out of my other property. Wife Mary to be exec- 
utrix.* " The records show also that Timothy 
Roggers was appointed to administer on the estate 
of Nathaniel Parker, who joined the Canada expe- 
dition of 1690. 

The widow, Mary, was appointed administratrix 
on the estate of her husband. Ensign John Stetson. 
Eliab Turner was appointed administrator on the 
estate of his brother, Lazarus Turner, who died in 
the same service. 

Moses Simmons, in his will, says : " Being bound 
to Canada as a soldier, in 1690, in case he shall 
never return," orders his property to be equally 
divided between his brothers; his brother John to 
be executor. He did not return, and his will was 
puly executed. 


Samuel Bryant fell in the same expedition, and 
an inventory of his property was taken by William 
Perry and Samuel Stetson. 

Samuel Dwelly died also in this expedition, and 
an inventory of his property was taken by Jere- 
miah Hatch and Thomas Hyland. His father was 
administrator. Robert Sprout was another that 
did not return. These few names are rescued 
from oblivion. 

Mindful of this service, the General Court of 
Massachusetts granted a township of land to the 
heirs and assigns of Captain Sylvester and his 
company, situate, as supposed, in the Province of 
Maine; but, on running the line between Maine 
and New Hampshire, the township was found to be 
in the latter State. A petition was then presented 
by the parties interested, to the General Court for 
another township, on which action was taken as 
follows : — 

Province of Massachusetts Bay, 

In the House of Representatives, 

June 25, 1765. 
On the petition of James Warren and Joseph Joslyn Esqrs. 
and Mr. Charles Turner, Agents for the proprietors of a Town- 
ship granted to Capt. Joseph Sylvester and Company who 
served in the expedition against Canada in 1690, which town- 
ship was known by the name of Sylvester-Canada, and that 
the whole of said Township on running the line between this 
Province and New Hampshire, fell with the government of New 


Resolved^ that in lieu thereof there be granted to the Petition- 
ers & the Legal Representatives or assigns of the said Joseph 
Sylvester and Company a Township of the Contents of seven 
miles square in the unappropriated Lands belonging to this 
Province. Provided that the Grantees within six years settle 
Thirty Families in said Town, build a house for publick worship, 
and settle a learned Protestant Minister, and lay out one sixty- 
fourth part of said town for the use of the first settled Minister, 
and one other sixty-fourth part for the Ministry, and one other 
sixty-fourth part for a Grammar School, and one sixty-fourth 
part for the use of Harvard College. 

Provided^ also the said Township be laid out in such a part 
of the unappropriated lands belonging to this Province adjoin- 
ing to some former Grants to the eastward of Saco River, and 
that they return a Plan thereof into the Secretary's office within 
twelve months from this day, for confirmation. 

In Council, June 25th, 1765. Read and Concurred. Con- 
sented to by the Governor. 

True Copy from the Records of the General Court. Vol. 20, 
Page 71. 

Attest. John Avery Jun., Secretary. 

The number of the original proprietors was sixty, 
and the names were as follows : — 

Joseph Atkinson, 
Samuel Bryant, 
Robert Buck, 
Nathaniel Bartlett, 
John Delano, 
Samuel Dwelly, 
Samuel Doughty, 
William Eaton, 
John Field, 

Eleazar Jackson, 
John Joyce, 
Cornelius Jones, 
John Kent, 
Joseph Knap, 
John Kingman, 
John Lambert, 
Arthor Low, 
Mark Lothrop, 

Edward Smith, 
Thomas Snell, 
Thomas Soper, 
John Silvester, 
Benjamin Sutten, 
Joseph Studley, 
Mathew Stetson, 
Samuel Sprague, 
Joseph Shelley, 



Benjamin Gannett, 
Paul Guilford, 
James Glass, 
Joseph Goold, 
Samuel Hunt, 
James Howard, 
Thomas Hiland, 
Isaac Hanmer, 
James Harris, 
Nathaniel Harlow, 
Nathaniel Holmes, 

Gershom Marble, 
Thomas Morton, 
Samuel Pittifer, 
Joseph Prior, 
Robert Pheney, 
Nathaniel Parker, 
Elnathan Palmer, 
Peter Roach, 
John Reccords, 
Capt. Jos. Silvester, 
Edward Standley, 

James Snow, 
Moses Simmons, 
John Stetson, 
Stephen Totman, 
Lazarus Turner, 
Thomas Wild, 
Jabez Warren, 
Return Waite, 
Ebenezar White, 
Benony WoUy, 
John Wetherel. 

The proprietors selected and located the town- 
ship granted them by the General Court, and 
returned a plan thereof, as required. The town- 
ship, as located, was confirmed to them by the fol- 
lowing act : — 

Province of Massachusetts Bat, 
In the House of Representatives, 

June 2oth, 1768. 
Resolved^ that the within plan of a Township of the contents of 
Seven miles square, granted to James Warren Esqr. and others, 
Agents for the Proprietors of a Township called Sylvester 
Canada, formerly granted to Capt. Joseph Sylvester and Com- 
pany, which Township, by the late running the line between 
this Province and the Province of New Hampshire, fell within 
the bounds of the Government of New Hampshire, to them and 
their legal Representatives and Assigns, and by them laid out 
on the west side of Androscoggin River, bounded as follows. Viz 
— Beginning at a place in Androscoggin River called crooked 
Repels, six miles (as the River runs) above Androscoggin great 
falls, which is the easterly corner of Bakerstown so called, 
from thence running North Sixty Degrees West, in the North- 


easterly line of said Bakerstown, five miles and a half, to the 
northerly corner thereof, then running North twenty-six Degrees 
East by Province Land Ten miles and i8o rods to a stake 
with stones about it, then running by Province land South 
Sixty Degrees east Three miles and 250 rods to a heap of 
Stones by said River, thence running Southerly by said River 
to the bounds first mentioned, be accepted and hereby is 
confirmed to the said Petitioners and the legal Representatives 
of the said Joseph Sylvester and company, their heirs and 
Assigns forever, they complying with the following condi- 
tions, Viz — The grantees within six years settle thirty families 
in said Town, build a house fit for public worship, and settle 
a learned protestant minister, and lay out one sixty-fourth part 
of said Town for the use of the first Settled minister, and one 
sixty-fourth part for the Ministry, and one sixty-fourth part for 
a grammar School in said Town, and one Sixty-fourth part for 
the use of Harvard College, in Cambridge. Provided the same 
doth not exceed the quantity of Seven miles square, (exclusive 
of three thousand and two hundred Acres allowance for Ponds 
therein contained) nor interfere with any former grant. 

In Council, June 20th 1768. Read and Concurred. 

Consented to by the Governor upon condition that there 
shall be Eighty-one families according to the engagement here- 
with written. The engagement is as follows : I do in behalf of 
the Proprietors of this Township engage that there shall be 
eighty-one settlers, being the proportion of Settlers agreeable to 
the size of this Township. 

Signed, James Warren. 

A true extract from the Records of the General Court. Vol. 
21, Page 360-61. 

Attest : — John Avery Jun., Secretary. 

Having secured their township of land and 
located it, the proprietors now proceeded to lay out 


lots, and to induce the required number of families 
to settle on their lands. In July, 1768, they called 
a meeting of the proprietors, to be held at Mrs. 
Ruth Turner's, innholder, in Hanover, on the 20th 
day of October, following. At this meeting, Hon. 
John Gushing was chosen moderator; Charles Tur- 
ner, proprietors' treasurer, and William Turner, 
clerk. It was voted " that each proprietor pay the 
sum of twenty shillings on each share to the treas- 
urer, on or before the third Tuesday in May, 1 769, 
for discharging the debts that are or may be due 
from the propriety." It was also voted that Colo- 
nel James Warren, Charles Turner, and David 
Little, Jun., be a standing committee, to transact 
the affairs of the propriety, settle accounts, adjust 
the debts that are or may be due from the propriety, 
and order payment of the same, and, agreeable to 
law, make sale of those proprietors' lands who are 
delinquent in paying their taxes ; to determine the 
number, quality, and situation of the settling lots, 
and about convenient roads ; and procure a plan of 
the same, to be lodged with the clerk as soon as 
may be." Roads were to be made, and proper 
inducements offered to settlers, else they would not 
leave comfortable homes to locate in a wilderness, 
where they would suffer many deprivations without 
compensating advantages. New Gloucester had 
already been settled, and its people were enjoy- 


ing the comforts of life. But the^jp was no road 
through Bakerstown, now Auburn, in which there 
was a river to cross before reaching Sylvester-Can- 
ada, and the proprietors found it difficult to induce 
men to purchase the farms which they had to offer, 
or even to accept them without price. The com- 
mittee were, doubtless, active and energetic, yet 
little seems to have been accomplished for a con- 
siderable time. Meetings of the proprietors were 
called, and adjourned, without doing any important 
business, for the reason, doubtless, that it was diffi- 
cult to tell what it was best to do. At a meeting 
held in Pembroke, January 2, 1770, it was voted to 
raise a tax of thirty shillings on a share, to be paid 
to the treasurer, on or before the first day of Feb- 
ruary ensuing. In the summer of 1870 something 
was done toward making the necessary roads, it 
seems ; for, in August of that year, it was voted 
that "Major Joseph Josleyn, David Little, Jun., and 
Charles Turner be a committee to employ some 
suitable person or persons to repair very soon to 
the township and continue the road begun by Aaron 
Hinkley, Esq., to the limits of the township to 
Bakerstown, and, likewise, mark out a road from 
thence through Bakerstown." 

Meantime the proprietors were troubled by tres- 
passers coming up the Androscoggin River, in the 
winter time, and cutting valuable pine trees, which 


grew in abundance near the banks, and running 
them down the river in the spring. Hence, at a 
meeting held in Pembroke, October 23, 1770, 
"Hon. John Gushing, Esq., and Charles Turner 
were chosen a committee to prosecute all trespass- 
ers on said township." But the trespassers were 
bold and persistent ; they even cut hay on the 
meadows, and stacked it for the use of their teams 
in the winter. The proprietors, being equally per- 
sistent, chose a committee to burn their stacks of 
hay, and continue the prosecutions. At the meet- 
ing mentioned above, Hon. John Gushing and 
Gharles Turner were chosen a committee " to 
employ some suitable person or persons to clear out 
the road laid out from the meeting-house lot, in 
said township, to the line of said township, adjoin- 
ing Bakerstown." This must be the road now 
known as the Upper Street, leading by Mr. Bar- 
ren's, over Dillingham Hill, in Auburn, and 
through the village of North Auburn. 

The first tier of lots was laid out upon the 
Androscoggin River, beginning at the Auburn line, 
and extending northerly, making twenty lots in 
number. A second and third tier of lots, each con- 
taining the same number as the first, and lying side 
by side, were soon laid out, and a site selected for a 
meeting-house. It was at the line between lots 
numbered thirty-four and thirty-five, on the ledgy 


hill just north of Mr. G. W. Blossom's present resi- 
dence. The proprietors, it seems, expected settlers 
would purchase lots, and make themselves homes in 
the wilderness, when roads were opened for their 
convenience. But in this they were disappointed. No 
one was disposed to locate in the township, and 
subject himself to the inconvenience and hardship 
of pioneer life, and expose himself to peril by living 
in the vicinity of Indian tribes, who might, at any 
time, become hostile. The relations also between 
the colonies and the mother country were becoming 
unfriendly, and Dr. Howe well says : " The storm of 
civil warfare was seen to be gathering over the 
country, and, in case of that event, the situation of 
frontier settlers in the backwoods, where they must 
be exposed to the invasions of wandering bands of 
hostile savages, was not at all inviting." The act 
granting the proprietors a township of land was 
passed in 1 768, on condition that thirty families were 
settled therein within six years, a meeting-house 
built, and a learned Protestant minister settled. A 
considerable portion of this time was already passed, 
and none of the above conditions had been complied 
with ; and it does not appear that there were any 
grounds for hope that the conditions would be com- 
plied with in seasonable time, unless greater induce- 
ments were held out to attract settlers to their lands. 
Wherefore, in January, 1 771, at an adjourned meet- 
ing, at Hanover, the following vote was passed : — 


Whereas said Township remains unsettled, although there is a 
number of Lots laid out, and a Plan thereof returned to the Pro- 
prietor's Clerk, and whereas the time limited by the General 
Court for settling said Township is far elapsed ; and the Proprie- 
tors apprehending that by granting away to settlers some of the 
Lots laid out, to such persons as will perform the conditions 
ordered by the said court, the settling of said Township would 
be expedited : 

Wherefore the said Proprietors agree to grant to any person 
that inclines to go and settle said land, one of said Lots, already 
laid out and marked on said Plan, being about 125 acres, and 
so to every person that inclines to go, not exceeding the num- 
ber of 30, and that they shall choose their own Lots, any where 
in the three first tier of Lots on Androscoggin (or the great) 
river, taking one, or another, that is marked on said Plan, and 
make return to said Clerk, of the Lot so chosen, within six months 
from this time, and the Proprietors will confirm the same to each 
of said Settlers, they giving security to Mr. Charles Turner 
their Treasurer, for performing the conditions mentioned in the 
grant of said Township, as to clearing of land, and building a 
house : and further, if any of those 30 Settlers choose a lot 
that has no meadow in it, such settler shall have privilege to 
cut hay on any Proprietor's land, during the first five years, the 
50th and 51st lots excepted, one for the Minister, the other 
for the Ministry, which are not to be included in the above 30 

And that Col. James Warren Esq, Joseph Josleyn Esq, Aaron 
Hinkley Esqr, Mr. Charles Turner and Mr. David Little Jun, 
be a committee to procure settlers upon the terms aforesaid, 
and forward the settlement of said Township. 

The gi£t of a lot, at the choice of the settler, 
together with certain other privileges, was supposed, 
no doubt, to be a sufficient inducement to incline 


men to accept the gift ; but in this the proprietors 
were disappointed. Their meeting for business was 
adjourned from time to time, hoping, doubtless, that 
their committee would be successful in procuring 
settlers in the spring. There was, indeed, much to 
arouse effort to procure settlers, since the time 
allowed them for this purpose was fast slipping away, 
and, unless they should succeed in their efforts soon, 
they must suffer a considerable pecuniary loss. In 
August of 1 87 1, at an adjourned meeting, the fol- 
lowing vote was passed : — 

That Mr. Peleg Wadsworth be employed to go to the Township 
and lay out two other tier of Lots, in addition to the three 
already laid out, and Road lengthwise between them of four rods 
wide, and that any person inclining to settle there, on the terms 
proposed by vote of the Proprietors at their meeting the 8th 
day of January last, have liberty to choose one Lot not already 
taken up, any where in said 5 tiers, excepting the two Lots men- 
tioned in said Vote ; and likewise 8 other Lots containing the 
largest quantity of Meadow, and most suitable for Mills, to be 
pitched upon, and the numbers returned by Mr. Wadsworth to 
the Clerk as soon as may be ; and whereas the time for taking 
up Lots and making return to the Clerk mentioned in said Vote 
is elapsed, that the time be prolonged to the first day of May 
next : The Proprietors reserving roads of 2^ rods wide between 
any two Lots, where it may be convenient. 

Voted to give a bounty of Six Pounds to each settler, that shall 
take a Lot and build a house, and clear 5 acres of land, agree- 
able to the grant to the Proprietors, by the first day of Novem- 
ber, 1772. 


Voted to appoint a person to go down the latter part of Sum- 
mer to see and assist the Committee of Bakers Town, in making 
a road from Bakers Mills, to the foot of Sylvester Town, also to 
see that they cut out the same. 

Voted to cut out the road between the second and third tier 
of Lots, a rgd wide, making it join the road through Bakers 

These various inducements procured no settlers, 
and the forests of Sylvester remained unbroken. 
It was not only necessary to make generous offers 
to settlers, but also to see that a road was made for 
their convenience in getting to the township. A 
farm, however desirable in itself, which could be 
reached only by following spotted trees for miles 
through a dense forest, would have few attractions 
to most men. Hence, the proprietors were as 
earnest in their efforts to secure a road through 
Bakerstown, now Auburn, as in their own township. 
At a meeting holden April 15, 1772, it was 

Voted^ That the time for taking settling Lots, and making 
returns, be lengthened out till the first of September next. 

Voted to appoint an agent to make application to the next 
Sessions at Falmouth to get or procure a road laid out from 
Little Androscoggin River to Sylvester Town. 

We may infer from this vote that the people or 
proprietors of Bakerstown took no interest in the 
road through their township to Sylvester, and were 
not inclined to make one for the accommodation of 


their neighbors. As a further inducement for men 
to settle in Sylvester, the following votes were 
passed at this meeting : — 

That any person that inclines to take a Mill Lot and one set- 
tling Lot, and will give security to Mr. Charles Turner, Proprie- 
tor's Treasurer, by the first of January next, to build a Saw Mill 
fit to saw boards, and two years from the first of January next a 
Gristmill fit for grinding meal, shall have said two Lots con- 
firmed unto him by the Proprietors, he doing the duty of per- 
forming the conditions of one settling Lot. 

Voted to give four pounds and ten shillings Bounty to settlers, 
from the first of November 1772 to the first of July 1773, they 
performing the conditions as before. 

Voted that Mr. Josiah Smith, the Agent, be directed at the 
expense of the Propriety to procure some kind of conveyance 
for horses over Little Androscoggin River. 

Voted that the time for making returns of Lots taken, be 
lengthened out from the first of September 1772 until the first 
of July 1773. 

Dr. Howe says : " Hitherto all efforts of the pro- 
prietors to procure settlers for their new township 
had proved utterly abortive ; but this year, Daniel 
Staples, Thomas Records, Elisha Records, Joseph 
Leavitt, and Abner Phillips entered the town with 
axes on their shoulders, and commenced the first 
actual settlement of the place. These were the 
true pioneers of Turner. 

The proprietors seem now to have been encour- 
aged to make renewed efforts to secure settlers. 
The forests once broken, and even a few homes 


established, men would be more willing to come in 
and select lots for themselves. Some social advan- 
tages were now possible, and life would be relieved 
of that feeling of isolation and desolateness which 
must have been suffered by the first settler. At 
the proprietors' meeting, held in Pembroke, August 
4th, 1772, the following votes, among others, were 
passed : — 

Voted to allow William Turner, Proprietors' Clerk, twelve 
pounds in full for his service to this day. 

Voted that a Committee be chosen to get a Grist and Saw-mill 
built in the Township, upon the best terms they can for the Pro- 
priety ; and have liberty to give a sum not exceeding Twenty 
Pounds to any person or persons that will undertake to build 
them, in addition to what was voted by the Proprietors at their 
meeting in April last, provided said person or persons shall 
compleat the Gristmill by the fourth day of August next, and the 
Sawmill by the fourth day of August 1774, and give good and 
sufficient security to the Treasurer, Mr. Charles Turner, on or 
before the first day of December next, for performing the same, 
and keeping them in order for grinding corn and sawing stuff 
for the Proprietors and Settlers, at all times as customary, for 
twenty years next following ; said Committee, in case they can- 
not agree with any person or persons on the terms limited by 
this vote, to report, as soon as may be, what is best for the Pro- 
prietors to do, in order to accomplish the business : that this 
Committee consist of three, that Mr. Charles Turner, David 
Little Jun, and Col. Joseph Josleyn be this Committee. 

Other meetings of the proprietors were held in 
the autumn of this year, but no business was 
accomplished, except to raise a tax of thirty shil- 


lings on each original share, to be paid to Mr. 
Charles Turner, their treasurer, on or before the 
15th of March, 1773. This had been the most suc- 
cessful business year since the beginning of their 
efforts to induce settlers to locate in the township. 
The prospect of war with England was favorable to 
their enterprise rather than otherwise ; and they 
seem to have been more hopeful of securing the 
requisite number of settlers within the time speci- 
fied by the General Court. Dr. Howe makes the 
following record: "This year (1773), Peleg Wads- 
worth, Ichabod Bonney, Jun., and Peleg Chandler 
performed such settling duties as to entitle them- 
selves to three of the several settlers' lots ; and 
Josiah Staples commenced a bona fide settlement 
upon a fourth. At about the same time one Elisha 
Lake actually removed his family into the new plan- 
tation, but his continuance in the place was only of 
short duration, and did not entitle him to the rights 
of settlement." In March, 1773, it was voted: — 

That Daniel Staples, Thomas Records, Elisha Records, 
Joseph Leavitt and Abner Phillips, have ten dollars Bounty, 
each, paid to them by the Treasurer, they giving security for 
performing the conditions of settlement, agreeable to a former 

Dr. Howe makes this note : " Although Ichabod 
Bonney, Jr., and Peleg Wadsworth took up settlers' 
lots in 1773, Captain Bonney did not remove to the 


town till 1783 ; and General Wadsworth never was 
a permanent resident here. He graduated at Har- 
vard College, in 1 769, and, for several years, taught 
a grammar school in Plymouth. He took an active 
part in lotting out and selling this town, but when 
the Revolutionary war broke out he entered into 
the military service, and was employed some time in 
arming, equipping, and disciplining the raw troops 
of the country. He held several important military 
appointments, and in 1 780, when the General Court 
of Massachusetts projected a scheme for expelling 
the British forces from the Penobscot, the com- 
mand of the land forces was confided to him. In 
this enterprise he encountered incredible hardships 
and dangers, and was finally taken a prisoner by the 
English. After the close of the Revolutionary 
war, General Wadsworth removed to Maine, and 
settled in the town of Portland, but afterward 
removed to Hiram, where he lived much respected, 
and died universally lamented by his numerous 
acquaintance." It was also voted : — 

That all those persons who have or shall take settling Lots, 
on or before the 24th day of May next, and shall give security 
to the Treasurer, for performing the conditions of settlement, and 
shall perform said Conditions by the first day of July, 1774, shall 
be entitled to four pounds ten shillings Bounty. 

Trespassers continued to be a trouble to the pro- 
prietors, and at their meeting in May of this year, 
it was voted : — 


That the Committee for prosecuting trespassers be hereby fully 
empowered and authorized to prosecute all trespasses that have 
been or shall be committed on said Township, until final issue, 
with power of substitution : also that they be hereby fully 
empowered to see the road cleared out from Little Androscog- 
gin River to Sylvester Town; also to procure conveyance for 
horses over Little Androscoggin River, if Bakers Town people 
will not build a bridge. 

Hearing that their meetings, held in previous 
years, were not legal, and that they might be 
involved in difficulties, should they attempt to 
enforce their resolutions against trespassers, or 
should there be a disposition on the part of any one 
not to comply with their votes, they proceeded to 
call a meeting of the proprietors in legal form, that 
the question of legality might be at rest, and all 
their acts be surely valid. The first meeting under 
the new call was held' in Hanover, March 8, 1774. 
It was then voted : " To confirm all and any former 
votes and grants, at any former meeting or meet- 

About this time the " Pejepscut " deed and claim 
came to the knowledge of the proprietors, and they 
were fearful that this claim would interfere with 
their grant, as located by them. To set this matter 
at rest, they voted, at a meeting held April 5, 

1774: — 

That Charles Turner be appointed, and he is hereby 
appointed, to make all necessary enquiry, in the best way possi- 


ble as to the Pejepscut Deed and Confirmation, how it is 
bounded, especially where it begins, and crosses Androscoggin 
River, and procure an attested copy thereof, if possible ; also 
as to the westerly bounds of the Plymouth Company's Grant ; 
and make any other inquiry he shall think necessary, relative 
thereto, and make report of his doings at the adjournment of 
this meeting. 

As no action was taken at the adjourned meeting 
on this matter, it is presumed that the " Pejepscut " 
deed did not interfere with their grant. But, after 
all their efforts, they could not succeed in procuring 
the erection of a saw and grist mill; hence, they 
thought best to offer greater inducements, as the 
following vote will show : — 

That if any person or persons will undertake to build a Corn 
Mill in Sylvester Town, by the tenth day of October, 1774, and a 
Saw Mill by the tenth day of October, 1775, fit for grinding and 
sawing, and will give good and sufficient security to Mr. Charles 
Turner, Proprietors' Treasurer, for performing the same, and 
keeping them in order for grinding and sawing for the Proprie- 
tors and Settlers, for twelve years next following, shall have one 
Mill Lot and one Settling Lot confirmed unto him or them by 
said Proprietors, he or they doing the duty or performing the 
conditions of one settling Lot : also shall have twenty-five 
Pounds Lawful Money. Also voted, that Col. Warren, Charles 
Turner, and Peleg Wadsworth Jun. or the major part of them, 
be a Committee to let out the same. 

It appears that the people of Bakerstown were 
not disposed to build a bridge across Little River 
for the accommodation of the proprietors and the 


public, for at meeting held May loth, 1774, it was 
voted : — 

That Mr. Ichabad Bonney Jun. be desired at a suitable time 
in the ensuing summer to go down to the Eastward, and build a 
bridge over Little Androscoggin River, in the road lately cleared 
from Bakers Town to Sylvester, and for that purpose employ a 
suitable number of hands in the most prudent and cheap way he 
can, either by carrying them from here, or employing those that are 
there, — said Bonney to have for his service ten Dollars per 
month, to commence from the time of his going from home, and 
to end with the time the work is done, and he to allow for the 
time he is employed in his own service there, and he to be 
allowed for his own expenses in going down and while he is there, 
during the time he is engaged in said service, excepting a house 
which he is to find himself. 

To meet the expenses, they voted : — 

A tax of twenty shillings on a Right, to be paid to the Treas- 
urer, on or before the fourth day of September, 1774. 

And, to encourage the building of mills, it was 
voted : — 

That the Committee for letting out the Mills have liberty to 
give ten Pounds more, in addition to the twenty-five Pounds 
already voted, if occasion require. 

At a meeting of the proprietors, held in Pem- 
broke, July 19, 1774, it was voted: — 

That Mr. Ichabod Bonney Jun. be desired and employed, 
and he is hereby desired and employed, at a suitable time this 
summer, to go to the eastward to forward the building of a Grist 
and Saw Mill in Sylvester Town, as far as he shall think neces- 


sary the ensuing fall, and for that purpose to employ a suitable 
number of hands, in the most prudent and cheap way he can, either 
by carrying them from here, or employing those there ; said 
Bonney to have for his own service four Pounds per month, and 
his own expenses, excepting a horse, — to commence from the 
time he goes from hence and to expire with the time he is 
employed there. 

This new effort seems to have been crowned with 
success, since at a meeting held October 25th, i774» 
the proprietors voted as follows : — 

Whereas Mr. Samuel Blake proposes to build a Grist and Saw 
Mill in Sylvester Town, to be completed fit for grinding and saw- 
ing, in one year from this date, and to keep them in good repair 
for twelve years next ensuing, for said Mill Lott, and the whole 
of the preparation already made by said Proprietors in said 
Township for building said Mills to this day, and also £^^ — 
6 — 8, lawful money, the one half of which to be paid in three 
months from this date, the other half when the work is com- 
pleted: Therefore said Proprietors hereby contract with said 
Blake, on the conditions aforesaid, he giving security to Mr. 
Charles Turner, Proprietors' Treasurer, for performing the 

In January, 1775, each proprietor was assigned a 
lot of land for his own use, and thirty lots were 
returned as " settlers' lots," the numbers of which 
were placed on record, but no mention is made of 
the owners' names. These lots were located on the 
Upper Street and Lower Street, so called, and a few 
on the road leading south from the village. About 
this time the Revolutionary War began to be immi- 


nent, and the attention of the people was given to 
those things which deeply concerned their country's 
welfare. The proprietors of " Sylvester Town " 
even found a subject to engross their minds more 
intensely than their lands to the "eastward," and 
seem to have forgotten the meetings which were 
called for the transaction of business, for it does not 
appear by their records that the meeting appointed 
for September 4th, 1775, was ever held, or that any 
meeting was held during the two years following. 
But Mr. Charles Turner, their treasurer, was mean- 
while actively engaged in securing settlers, and in 
promoting the interests of all concerned. 
Dr. Howe makes the following note : — 

Samuel Blake was a native of Taunton, Bristol County, Massa- 
chusetts, and married Abigail Richard, of Thompson, Conn, 
He died January nth, 1802, leaving the following issue : Caleb, 
who married Betsey Briggs, June nth, 1793 ; Samuel, who mar- 
ried Nabby Bonney, January 27th, 1776 ; Thatcher, who married 
Sarah Evans, November nth, 1778; Edward, who married Sally 
Harwood, of Bowdoinham ; Abigail, who married Dr. Michael 
Rowland, of Bowdoinham ; Grinfill, who married Eunice Cary, 
January 2d, 1805 ; Silas, who married Sophia Cary, studied med- 
icine with Dr. Luther Cary, and settled in the town of Otisfield ; 
Joseph, who studied medicine with Dr. Joseph Snell, of Win- 
throp, and died in Turner, August i8th, 1813 ; and Lydia, who 
married Gustavus Newhall, April 7th, 181 1. 

At this time mills had not been built, and every 
grist had to be carried to New Gloucester to be 


ground. Roads were not completed, hence it was 
necessary for those sturdy men to carry their corn 
on their shoulders to New Gloucester to be ground, 
guided a portion of the way by "spotted trees.*' 
We may well suppose that many a one shrank from 
this task, and tradition informs us that one man, not 
a lover of farm labor, would carry a bushel of corn to 
mill in exchange for a day's work, and that he was 
often employed in this service. But notwithstanding 
the great discouragements of the time, and the hard- 
ships incident to pioneer life, the work of bringing 
new settlers into the town went surely, though 
slowly, on. Says Dr. Howe : — 

A number of single young men were, during this period, in- 
duced to take up settling lots, and a few families actually moved 
into the plantation. In the spring of 1775, Israel Haskell 
removed his family from New Gloucester into Sylvester, and this 
was the first family that made a permanent settlement in the 
plantation. Mr. Haskell had married Abigail Davis, by whom 
he had a large family, whose names and marriage relations were 
as follows : Abigail, married Richard Phillips ; Hannah, married 
Abner Phillips; Israel, married Juda Wellman; Jacob, married 
Mary Johnson, March 15th, 1793; Esther, married Joseph 
Tyler, March 15th, 1793; Phebe, married Samuel Tyler; Asa, 
married Jemima Bray; Elizabeth, married Daniel Bray; and 
Mary, married Nehemiah Sawtelle. 

Soon after, Hezekiah Bryant removed his family from Halifax, 
in the County of Plymouth, which made the second family. Mr. 
Bryant had married Deborah Crooker, of Pembroke, who died 
April 22, 1782. In November following, he married Mary Ellis, 
of Hebron, Maine, who died in March, 1784. In July, 1784, he 


married the widow Joanna Colley, who died in June, 1805. 
August 18, 1805, he married the widow Rebecca Child, who died 
February 27, 1826. Mr. Bryant's children with their marriage 
connections were as follows : Deborah, who married William 
Gott ; Sophia, who married Joshua Purrington ; and Thomas, 
who married Salome Sawtelle. The above were born in Halifax, 
and the following in Sylvester : Bethiah, the first child born in 
Sylvester, married Ebenezer Keith, of Livermore ; Jonathan, 
who married Anna Morse ; and Hezekiah, who married Polly 

Moses Stephens, in the same season, removed his family from 
New Gloucester, which made the third family in Sylvester. Mr. 
Stephens had married Mary Collins, who died on the 24th of 
April, 1780, which was the first death that occurred in the plan- 
tation. After her death, Mr. Stephens married the widow Han- 
nah Davis, of Gloucester, Mass. His children and their mar- 
riage connections were as follows : Anna, who married Joseph 
Leavitt, July i8, 1776 ; Jacob, who married Patty Sawyer ; Mary, 
who married Isaac Phillips, in 1779; Elizabeth, who married 
Oliver Turner, October 12, 1788 ; Moses, who married Nancy 
Smith, October 9, 1788; Aphia, who married Seba Smith, 
October 9, 1788 ; Michael W., who married Polly Bryant, Octo- 
ber 14, 1805 ; and Lydia D., who married Alden Blossom, Octo- 
ber 23, 1803. 

What other settlers came in during these years 
there are no records to show, but it appears that the 
proprietors turned their attention to their township 
again, and active measures were taken to promote 
the interests of the settlement. The resolve grant- 
ing them the township required them not only to 
secure a certain number of settlers within a given 
time, but also to build a meeting-house and settle a 


learned Protestant minister. But this had not been 
done, so they now determine to fulfil this part of 
their contract with the State. In a meeting held 
August 24, 1778, they voted: — 

That it be recommended to the Rev. Mr. Charles Turner to 
enquire of the settlers of Sylvester Township what they will 
build a meeting-house for, 30 feet square, 18 feet posts between 
joints, finish the outside, lay the lower floor, with 6 windows 
in the house ; and upon his return to report to the Propriety. 

Voted^ that it be recommended to the Rev. Mr. Charles Tur- 
ner, to agree with some person to clear two acres on the meet- 
ing-house spot. 

Voted^ that all who have taken up Lotts in Sylvester Township 
and have not fulfilled the original conditions, unless they will 
perform the conditions on their respective Lotts, by the first day 
of June, 1779, they one and all shall forfeit their title to deeds 
ever thereafter. 

Voted^ That the Rev. Mr. Charles Turner should take a view 
of the road upon the westernly side of Wilson Pond, and that he 
would be so good as to inform the Proprietors what he thinks 
the settlers ought to have for their trouble. 

Voted^ that Mr. Charles Turner, Treasurer of the Propriety 
be empowered to run the lines of the two westerly tier of Lotts, 
and to run three tier of Lotts from Androscoggin to the end of 
the Township, parrelled with the Lotts already laid out, at the 
expense of the Propriety. 

There is no record of Rev. Mr. Turner's report, 
but the proprietors apparently acted on his sugges- 
tion, since at a meeting held March 9, 1779, they 
voted : — 

That the sum of twenty Pounds be allowed the settlers of 
Sylvester Town for clearing the road at the westerly end of 


Wilson Pond, to be distributed among them according to their 
several services in clearing said road. 

It was also voted at the same meeting: — 

That Capt. Ichabod Bonney be a committee to repair to Syl- 
vester Town, and prepare all the materials of wood, for building 
a Meeting-house of thirty-five feet square, and twenty feet posts, 
and procure workmen to frame and raise the same, and board 
the walls with one and a half inch stuff, and compleat the roof, 
and procure nails for the purpose, and conduct the whole in 
such a manner as shall appear to be the least expensive to the 

Voted^ That the Rev. Mr. Baldwin be desired to write a letter 
to the Settlers of Sylvester Town, informing them of the full 
acquiescence of the Proprietors with their proposal of settling 
the Rev. Mr. Charles Turner as their minister, and transmit to 
them what part of his support, during five years, the Proprietors 
have voted to pay. 

This Rev. Mr. Baldwin seems to have become 
one of the proprietors, since he was generally pres- 
ent at their meetings for a few years, and on several 
occasions was chosen clerk, yet his name does not 
appear in the list of proprietors who drew lots. To 
remove all doubt as to the meaning of the proprie- 
tors in their offer to pay a portion of the minister's 
salary, they passed the following vote April 19, 1 779. 

Whereas the Proprietors at their last meeting, voted to pay 
one half the charge the settlers shall be at, for the support of a 
Clergyman for three years, and one third part for two years 
after, and whereas some doubts may arise with regard to the 
intention of the Proprietors in case the settlers should agree for 


articles of produce, in certain quantities, instead of Money in its 
present uncertain situation : 

Therefore, Voted, that it is the meaning and intention of the 
Proprietors to conform to the contract which the settlers shall 
make with the Rev. Mr. Charles Turner, for his standing salary, 
agreeable to the proportion in their said Vote expressed, whether 
it be for money or articles of produce. 

Though they made commendable effort and gen- 
erous offers to induce settlers to locate on their 
lands, and to fulfil their part of the contract with 
the State within the specified time, the proprietors 
were not fully successful. The appointed time was 
expiring ; the requisite number of settlers was not 
secured; a meeting-house was not built, and a 
learned Protestant minister was not settled. Hence, 
at a meeting held August 9, 1779, Hon. James 
Warren was chosen an agent of the propriety to 
present a petition to the General Court, represent- 
ing the difficulties they had labored under in fully 
complying with the conditions of settlement "on 
account of the particular situation of the times, 
and to pray the General Court to extend to them 
a further time for that purpose." The following 
resolve shows the result of this petition : — 

State of Massachusetts Bay. 

In the House of Representatives, 
September 14th, 1779. 

On the petition of James Warren, Agent for the proprietors, 
of a Township of land on Androscoggin River, called Sylvester- 
Canada, confirmed to himself and others, by the General Court 

John Avery, Dep. Sec. 


of this State, on the eighteenth day of June 1768, upon certain 
conditions, as may appear by the resolve of that date. 

Resolved^ that for the reasons in said Petition assigned, the 
furthur term of three years be allowed said Proprietors for ful- 
filling the conditions required by the aforesaid Resolve of the 
i8th of June 1768, within which term the fulfillment of said 
conditions, by said Proprietors shall operate and be to all in- 
tents and purposes as satisfactory as if performed within the 
Term prescribed by the aforesaid Resolve of June i8th, 1768, 
said Resolve to the contrary notwithstanding. 

Sent up for concurrence. 

John Hancock, Speaker. 

In Council, September 14th, 1779. 
Read and concurred. 

Consented to by the major ) 
part of the Council. ]" 

True copy. Attest : John Avery, Dep. Sec. 

Dr. Howe says: — 

These measures put the affairs of the plantation on sound 
footing again, and most of those who had been diverted 
from the enterprise, by entering into the military service, had 
now returned to Sylvester, and a number more of families had 
moved into the place, and several additional young men had 
taken up settling lots. I will therefore endeavor to furnish a 
detailed account of all the families and individual settlers in the 
plantation on the first of January, 1780. Up to this time there 
had occurred no death in the township, nor am I aware of more 
than one death which occurred in the military service among the 
settlers of Sylvester. Andrew Bass, of Halifax, who had taken 
up a settler's lot, went into the army and fell at Stillwater, at 
the capture of General Burgoyne and the army under his com- 



Inhabitants of Sylvester Canada in 1780: Jotham Briggs, 
wife and four children ; Israel Haskell, wife and seven children ; 
Daniel Briggs, wife and five children ; Abner Phillips, wife and 
one child ; Daniel Staples and wife ; Josiah Staples, wife and 
one child; Benjamin Merrill ; Moses Stephens, wife and five 
children; Joseph Leavitt, wife and one child; Jacob Leavitt, 
wife and seven children ; Charles Turner, Jun. and William 
Turner, 2d; Seth Staples, wife and one child; John Keen, wife 
and nine children ; Daniel Merrill, wife and three children ; 
Benjamin True, wife and four children ; Richard Phillips, wife 
and two children ; Malachi Waterman ; Jabez Merrill, wife and 
two children ; Levi Merrill, wife and one child ; Ezekiel Brad- 
ford, Jun. ; Hezekiah Hill ; Isaac Phillips and wife ; Stephen 
Bryant, wife, five children and mother ; William Hayford, wife 
and nine children ; Samuel Andrews ; William Bradford, wife 
and two children ; Jesse Bradford ; Hezekiah Bryant, wife and 
six children ; James Crooker and Ebenezer, his brother ; Sam- 
uel Blake, wife and five children ; Mark Andrews ; Henry Jones, 
wife and one child. Total population in 1780, one hundred and 

The number of inhabitants in Sylvester Canada in 1780, and 
the order of time in which they moved into the plantation or 
formed into families, were as follows : — 


Israel Haskell, 9 

Moses Stephens, 7 

Hezekiah Bryant, 8 


Jabez Merrill, 4 

Abner Philips, 3 

Joseph Leavitt, 3 

Richard Philips, Jun., 4 

William Bradford, 4 

Samuel Blake, 7 

John Keen, 1 1 

Josiah Staples, 3 

Daniel Briggs, 7 


Stephen Bryant, 8 
Dea. Daniel Merrill, 5 

Seth Staples, 3 

Daniel Staples, 2 

Jacob Leavitt, 9 
William Hayford, 11 

Jotham Briggs, 6 

Henry Jones, 3 

Isaac Philips, 2 

Total, 119 

There were also at 
that time, not formed 
into families, the follow- 
ing: — 

Benjamin Merrill, 
Charles Turner Jr., 
William Turner 2d, 
Hezekiah Hill, 
Samuel Andrews, 
Mark Andrews, 
Jesse Bradford, 
James Crooker, 
Ebenezer Crooker, 
Benjamin Jones, 
Levi Merrill, 
Ezekiel Bradford Jr. 

There were twelve of 
these, making the whole 
population at the begin- 
ning of this year, 131. 


Dr. Howe had opportunities for making a correct 
list of the early inhabitants of Sylvester which none 
now enjoy, and he improved them faithfully, yet he 
does not feel certain that his list is free from error. 
He adds the following interesting statements : — 

Of these settlers, Jesse Bradford, Levi Merrill, Richard Phil- 
ips, Abner Philips, John Keen, and his oldest son John, Mark 
Andrews, Samuel Blake and Joseph Leavitt, had all performed 
service in the army of the revolution, but had now returned to 
the plantation. 

I will now give a more detailed account of some of the fami- 
lies contained in this enumeration. 

John Keen came from Taunton in 1777, where he had mar- 
ried Jerusha Blake. Their children and their marriage connec- 
tions were as follows : Keziah, who married Mesheck Keen, of 
Butterfield, now Sumner ; John, who married Priscilla Robert- 
son ; Jerusha, who married Elijah Fisher, December 4, 1785 ; 
Elisha, who married Anna Briggs, November 26,1790; Mary 
B., who married John Munroe, January 13, 1793 ; Grinfill, who 
married Molly Rose, of Dighton, Mass. ; Mercy, who married 
Bradford Rose, June 8, 1800 ; Rebecca, who married Elisha 
Pratt, April i, 1799; Edward, who married Hannah Kingsley, 
December 21, 1800; and Priscilla, who married Gushing Phil- 
ips, April s, 1805. 

William Hayford removed into Sylvester the same year, and 
his children were, William, who married Phinela French, Novem- 
ber 24th, 1785 ; Betty, who married Benjamin Alden, November 
24th, 1785; Artamis, who married Joel Simmons; Arvida, who 
married Mary Ellis, March 14th, 1796; Matilda, who married 
Abiathar Briggs, December ist, 1789; Gustavius, who married 
Abigail Fuller, August 13th, 1797; Zeri, who married Sally 
Chickering; Gad, who married Sally Bisbee; and Albert, who 
married Deborah Bonney. 


Jacob Leavitt had married Sylvia Bonney, and their children 
were, Joseph, who married Anna Stephens, July i8th, 1776; 
Sylvia, who married Levi Merrill; Tabatha, who married Benja- 
min Jones ; Isaiah, who married Lydia Ludden, September 7th, 
1797; Jacob, who married Rhoda Thayer, January ist, 1788; 
Cyrus, who married Sarah Pratt ; Sarah, who married Jeremiah 
Dillingham, April 29th, 1787 ; and Isaac, who married Ruth 
Perry in 1797. 

Daniel Briggs removed from Taunton in 1777, where he had 
married Silence Hart. Their children were, Daniel, who mar- 
ried Elizabeth Bradford, February 4th, 1788; Silence, who 
married Jairus Philips, December 15th, 1785 ; Abiathar, who 
married Matilda Hayford, December ist, 1789 ; Arunah, who 
married Lydia Godfrey in 1793 ; Anna, who married Elisha 
Keen, November 26th, 1790; Betsy, who married Caleb Blake, 
July nth, 1793; Hart, who married Betsy Records in i8oo; 
John, who married Jennet Munroe, March 28th, 1802 ; and 
Lydia, who married Briggs Curtis, March 31st, 1799. 

Stephen Bryant removed from Halifax, where he had married 
Rebecca Bass, and brought his widowed mother with him, who 
died January 30th, 1802, at the age of ninety-one years. Their 
children were, Saba, who married Cornelius Jones, April 3d, 
1788 ; Hannah, who married Job Prince, June 23d, 1791 ; Bath- 
sheba, who married Gideon Southard, May 5th, 1806 ; Rebecca, 
who married Daniel Niles, May 14th, 1797 ; Abia, who married 
Jonas Mason, March 17th, 1799 ; Polly, who married Michael 
Stephens, October 14th, 1805 ; Lucy, who married Josiah 
Holmes, June 12th, 1803 ; Asenath, who married Ichabod 
Leavitt, April loth, 1808. Mr. Bryant had also two other chil- 
dren, Thomas and Lydia, who died young. 

We find that in 1780 there were in the town 
twenty-five families, and twelve young men, unmar- 
ried, who had taken up lots with the intention of 


becoming permanent • residents. But no meeting- 
house had been built, and no minister had been 
settled, though the proprietors had done what they 
could to accomplish this result. The settlement 
had now become so large, and the prospects of its 
increasing so encouraging, that the means of relig- 
ious worship and instruction had become a necessity 
to the moral welfare of the community. Besides, 
the proprietors were under obligation to secure the 
establishment of religious worship for the benefit 
of the families they should induce to settle on their 
lands. No meetings of the proprietors were held 
in 1780, but in December of the following year 
they passed this vote: — 

That the Clerk be desired to write to the settlers relative to 
their taxation, present and in future, building a meeting house, 
settling a minister, &c ; and to signify to them the desire of the 
Proprietors, that they choose a Committee of settlers, and 
properly and fully empower it to settle and determine with the 
Proprietors relative thereto, and that this committee attend at 
the adjournment of this meeting, and also to signify to the 
settlers the readiness and willingness of the Proprietors to do 
anything in their power to promote the further settlement of the 
town, and the welfare and prosperity of the present settlers. 

But passing votes, though done vigorously and 

earnestly, does not always secure the object desired; 

so now, votes passed in Massachusetts did not build 

a meeting-house in Sylvester, and more efficient 



action must be taken. Hence, in March, 1782, the 

Voted^ That Capt. Ichabod Bonney be a committee to repair 
to Sylvester Town and to erect a Meeting-house, thirty-five feet 
square, and twenty feet posts, to finish the outside by covering 
it with shingle and clapboard, set twenty-five window frames, 
glaze six windows of twenty-four squares each, seven by nine, 
and lay the lower floor, to complete the above mentioned work 
as soon as may be, and in the most frugal manner. 

Voted^ That Capt. Ichabod Bonney be, and he hereby is, 
authorized by the Propriety, to offer the settlers of Sylvester 
Town a sum not exceeding sixty pounds towards erecting a 
Meeting-house, provided they, the settlers, will obligate them- 
selves to build a Meeting-house not less than thirty-five feet 
square, to be completed agreeable to the preceding vote, by the 
last day of September next, and to take security for performing 
the same ; and if the settlers shall agree and oblige themselves 
to build a Meeting-house as above mentioned, then the said 
Capt. Bonney is to desist building an house as in the preceding 
vote. And in case the settlers shall agree with Capt. Bonney 
as aforesaid, and shall complete said Meeting-house as afore- 
said, then said house shall be the sole property of those settlers 
undertaking the business. 

Voted, that Capt. Ichabod Bonney be, and he is hereby, 
authorized and directed to set the Meeting-house as near the 
centre of the Parish, upon a road, as best to commode the Pro- 
prietors and settlers. 

At a meeting of the proprietors on August 12th, 
1782, they made a still more generous offer, as the 
following vote will show: — 


That the vote of the 4th of March last, instructing Capt. 
Ichabod Bonney to offer the settlers of Sylvester Town two 
hundred Dollars for them to build a Meeting-house within a 
limited time, be and hereby is so far reconsidered that he shall 
have full power to give the settlers any sum he shall think 
proper, and to allow the undertaker or undertakers such further 
sum as he shall judge necessary for compleating said house as 
directed in said vote. 

This action of the proprietors effected the object 
in view, as will appear by the report of their com- 
mittee. Captain Ichabod Bonney, at a meeting held 
on the nth day of November following. Your 
committee reports: — 

That he has agreed with the settlers for building said Meet- 
ing-house, for seventy-eight Pounds, to be paid in the several 
materials he had before provided, and the remainder in cash, 
and has taken security for the performance of the contract in 
a Bond signed by Samuel Blake, Henry Jones, John Kei n, 
Nathan Niles, William Bradford, Joseph Leavitt, Benjamin 
Jones and Jabez Merrill, who are over and above to have the 
property of the ground room and other parts of said Meeting- 
house, as expressed in said Bond, which I lodge with the Clerk, 
to be delivered to the Treasurer who may be chosen in the 
room of Mr. Charles Turner, deceased, to be prosecuted by him 
or his successor for any default in the performance of the con- 
ditions expressed in said bond. Ichabod Bonney Jun. 

Charles Turner, Esq., was then chosen treasurer 
and collector in place of his father, Charles Turner, 

The proprietors were very earnest in their pur- 
pose to have a minister settled in the plantation as 


soon as possible, and they felt compelled to take 
action in the matter at once, as the settlers seem 
not to have made energetic efforts to provide for 
themselves the privileges of public worship and 
religious instruction. Hence, on December 9th, 
1782, it was voted: — 

That Charles Turner, Esqr, General Wadsworth, and Capt. 
Ichabod Bonney, or any two of them, be a Committee to settle 
a minister in Sylvester Town agreeable to the Constitution, 
Resolves of the General Court and Votes of this Propriety 
heretofore passed, and make report of their doings to the Pro- 
priety as soon as possible. 

It was contemplated and expected at one time 
that the Rev. Charles Turner would be settled in 
Sylvester, but for some reason, which is not appar- 
ent, he did not become the first minister in town. 
There are some indications that the settlers did 
not choose to invite him; but whether he was not 
agreeable to them, or whether they did not wish 
to assume the burden of his support, cannot now 
be determined. On September 28th, 1784, the pro- 
prietors chose a committee "to inquire into the 
qualifications of Mr. John Strickland as a Gospel 
Minister, and to report to the Propriety as soon as 

On the 29th of March, 1785, the proprietors 
"voted a further tax of thirty shillings on each 
original right for the purpose of paying Rev. Mr. 


Strickland's salary." The funds for the support of 
public worship were not raised by subscription, but 
by vote of the town. Money was appropriated for 
this purpose the same as for any other for which 
money was raised, and the parish was the whole 
town. The settlers in Sylvester, at a meeting held 
August 1 2th, 1 784, voted a call to Mr. Strickland 
" to settle in the work of the ministry," and to 
pay him fifty pounds lawful money for his annual 
salary, so long as he shall be the minister of the 
town, and they adopted "a plan of church govern- 
ment according to a paper read at said meeting." 
They also chose Captain Ichabod Bonney, Dr. 
Daniel Child, and Stephen Bryant a committee to 
extend the call of the parish to Rev. Mr. Strick- 
land, and to acquaint the proprietors of the town- 
ship with their action in regard to this matter; 
they also approved and adopted as their own, the 
vote of the church and congregation, as follows: 
" In consideration of the great importance of having 
the stated means of grace settled in this place, and 
having heard the Rev. John Strickland, a member 
of Salem Presbytery some time, and being satisfied 
with his principles in doctrine and discipline, his 
ministerial gifts, and moral character, do make 
choice of him, the said John Strickland, as our 
minister, and do appoint Messrs. Richard Phillips, 
John Keen, and Benjamin True to attend the Pres- 


bytery at their next session in the town of Gray, to 
solicit this our call before the Presbytery, the same 
having been unanimously voted at a meeting held 
for that purpose, on the 12th of the present month, 

The town also voted that Mr. Strickland be 
allowed a reasonable time to visit his friends to 
the westward, annually, and that he should have 
" the common land five years, rent free." As a 
vote passed by the settlers in a plantation was not 
considered legal, a number of men gave Mr. Strick- 
land a bond for fifty pounds for his salary, which 
bond was to become null and void when the town 
should be incorporated, and a vote should be passed 
to pay him that amount. From a journal kept 
by Mr. Elijah Fisher, who came into Sylvester in 
1783, we learn that Mr. Strickland was installed 
pastor of the town, September 20th, 1784. He 
continued in the ministry here a number of years, 
and was doubtless successful in his work. He 
raised up a large family, and some of his grandchil- 
dren remain in the vicinity, or have, until recently, 
of whom Major Isaac Strickland is one. 

Sylvester-Canada, after a long struggle with 
many difficulties, had now become a prosperous 
settlement in which the means of comfort were 
possessed in abundance. Roads had been built, 
mills had been provided for sawing boards, and 


grinding corn and grain, a meeting-house had been 
erected, a learned Protestant minister settled, and 
public worship established. But the people suf- 
fered from the depreciation of Continental money, 
and were often embarrassed in their business trans- 
actions. The state of the proprietor's treasury, 
February 4th, 1782, will show how serious a trouble 
this was: — 

There remains of the ;^io tax uncollected, ;^2i3- 
14-11^, which if collected at 11 for one, will be 
in gold and silver £ 2 1-1-41^ 

There remains of the sale of lands, Nov. 15, 1779, 
;^2 00-8-3, which if collected at 24 for i, will be 
in gold and silver 8-7-0 

Paper, £ 432-^-2}^ ^ advanced to Aaron Hinckley, 

Esqr, in gold and silver 10-18-0 

Balance in the hands of the Treasurer in silver. . . 13-13-8^ 

There also remains ;£'2,792^ Continental, old emis- 
sion dollars in the Treasury. 

This shows the great depreciation of paper 
money from which the people suffered. The "old 
emission," it seems, was valueless. There were 
inconveniences suffered by the settlers living in a 
plantation, and they now desired that the town 
might be incorporated, so that any action they 
might take, or votes they might pass, might be 
legal and valid. And, in 1786, they notified the 
proprietors of their wish to become incorporated 


into a town, and the proprietors, at their meeting 
on the 25th of April of that year, voted, "That no 
objection be made to the proposed incorporation of 
the township." Dr. Howe says: — 

There was still some difficulty in the selection of a name for 
the new town. The settlers cherished with warm affection the 
name of Sylvester, as embracing some of the most tender and 
sacred associations of their minds; but the proprietors felt a 
strong predilection for the name of Turner, from the considera- 
tion that Charles Turner, Esq., of Scituate, had been one of 
their prominent members, and had served their corporation 
from the period of its organization to that of his death, with 
great ability and fidelity, as their Treasurer ; and also in con- 
sideration of the valuable services of Major William Turner, 
who had been their standing Clerk during the whole period, and 
had been very active in lotting out, and pushing forward the 
settlement of the plantation, and whose civil and military ser- 
vices to the commonwealth and nation had justly acquired an 
enviable reputation. 

But on presenting the two names to the General Court, that 
body decided at once, from the great respect which it held for 
the character and services of the Rev. Charles Turner, who had 
for many years stood in the front rank of its Senate, as a bea- 
con light, to direct its counsels through the gloomy and por- 
tentous struggle of the Revolution, that the name should be 
Turner. And, accordingly, on the 7 th day of July, 1786, passed 
the following act of incorporation : — 

An act to incorporate the Plantation called Sylvester, into a 
Town by the name of Turner. 

Whereas it appears to this Court that it would be productive 
of the public good, and for the benefit of the inhabitants and 
proprietors of the said Plantation, that the same should be 
incorporated into a Town : — 


Section i. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Rep- 
resentatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority 
of the same, That the Plantation called Sylvester, and included 
within the boundaries described by this Act, together with the 
inhabitants thereof, be, and they hereby are, incorporated into 
a Town by the name of Turner. [ Here follow the boundaries 
contained in the original grant to the Proprietors.] And the 
said Town is hereby vested with all the powers, rights and 
immunities which Towns within this Commonwealth are entitled 
to, or by law do enjoy. 

Section 2. And be it further enacted by the authority afore- 
said. That Isaac Parsons, Esqr, of New Gloucester, be, and he 
hereby is, empowered to issue his warrant to some principal 
inhabitant of said Town, requiring him to warn the inhabitants 
thereof to meet at such time and place, as he shall therein set 
forth, to choose all such officers as towns are required by law to 
choose in the month of March or April annually. 

Dr. Howe has favored us with interesting sketches 
of the early settlers of the town, and this seems to 
be a proper place to introduce them. As nearly all 
the people who were acquainted with the early set- 
tlers have passed away, it is impossible to gather 
the information which was obtainable a generation 
ago, and we may well be thankful that this work of 
rescuing from oblivion these sketches of the pio- 
neer settlers of the town was undertaken by one so 
well qualified for the task. 

Colonel William Turner was the younger brother 
of the Rev. Charles Turner, and graduated at Har- 
vard College in 1767. After the completion of his 
education, he spent a number of years in school- 


teaching, and gained a high reputation as a teacher 
of youth. At the commencement of the Revolu- 
tionary War he raised a company of rangers, and 
marched to Cambridge as their captain. In open- 
ing the effective batteries upon Dorchester Point, 
which drove the British forces with precipitation 
from the town of Boston, the critical and hazard- 
ous duty of advance guard was assigned to Cap- 
tain Turner, with his Scituate Rangers; and it 
was executed with such daring intrepidity as to 
attract the favorable notice of the commander-in- 
chief. After the relief of Boston, Captain Turner 
marched his company with the main army to New 
York, where he was, not long afterward, selected by 
General Washington as one of his aids, with the 
rank of major. This was a situation for which, 
both by education, and natural gifts, Major Turner 
was eminently qualified, and in which he remained 
during the war, serving successively under Wash- 
ington, Lee, Greene, Lincoln, and Knox. The 
facility with which he transcribed general orders, 
and the dexterity with which he transmitted them, 
rendered his services in the highest degree useful 
to the commanding general. 

He served some part of the time in every cam- 
paign during the war; but when the active opera- 
tions of the season were over, and the army retired 
into winter quarters, he generally returned to his 


family, and engaged in some more active employ- 
ment than that of performing the mere formalities 
of camp service. But when the spring opened, 
and the army again took the field. Major Turner 
promptly repaired to the post of duty. When he 
left the army in 1777, General Lee presented him 
with a valuable war-horse, in recognition of his 
valuable services. That winter he held a seat in 
the General Court of Massachusetts as representa- 
tive from the town of Scituate. From this date to 
1779, nearly his whole time was employed in the 
military service, but the greater part of the latter 
year was devoted to civil duties. That year the 
State Constitution of Massachusetts was formed, 
and Major Turner was a member of the Conven- 
tion that framed it. He was also the same year a 
representative to the General Court of Massachu- 
setts, and a member of a Congress of Delegates, 
holden at Concord, to consider the subject of paper 
currency, and to devise some means of removing or 
mitigating the evil of its depreciation. After this 
year he was generally with the army until the close 
of the war, when he returned to Scituate, and was 
once more elected member of the General Court. 

In 1801 he removed his family to Turner, but 
his health had now become too much impaired to 
permit him to take an active part in the duties of 
life, either public or private. He died at the age 


of sixty-one, leaving a widow, and several children. 
His remains were deposited in the village burying- 
ground, and at the head of his grave a tablet has 
been erected by his daughter, Mrs. Oriens Hum- 
phrey, of Boston. His children, with their marriage 
connections, were, William, who married Betsey 
Smith; Betty, who married Joseph Tilden; Xoa, 
who died December 12th, 181 5; Charles Lee, who 
married Cascarilla Child; Stephen, who married 
Nabby Cooper, and fell in a sanguinary conflict on 
the Canadian frontier in 18 14; Eunice, who mar- 
ried Martin Burr; Fanny, who married William 
Lee; Oriens, who married Benjamin Humphrey; 
Nancy, who married Briggs Sampson; Aphia, who 
remained single, in Boston ; and George, who died 
December 5th, 1793. 

Rev. Charles Turner. From him the town 
received its name. He was a native of Scituate, in 
Massachusetts, a descendant of Humphry Turner, 
who came from Essex, in England, about the year 
1630, and was one of the first settlers in the town. 
Humphry took up a settler's lot, which he left to 
his son Thomas, who left it to his son Charles, who 
in turn left it to his son Charles, and thus it has 
descended from father to son, and still remains in 
the possession of the Turner family. The subject 
of this sketch was born in 1732, was graduated at 
Harvard College in 1752, and was settled as a min- 


ister of the gospel in the town of Duxborough in 
1755. Here he continued to discharge the duties 
of his calling until the political turmoil preceding 
the Revolutionary War, when it became expedient 
for him to resign his charge. He was an active and 
zealous Whig; and by his intimacy with Samuel 
Adams, John Hancock, and their copatriots; by the 
open and fearless manner in which he expressed 
his political opinions; and especially by the bold 
views expressed in an election sermon which he 
preached before Governor Hutchinson, he had 
given great offence to the royalists and tories of 
that time. The royal governors and their councils 
of assistants had, from year to year, found great 
difficulty in the selection of a chaplain to preach 
the annual election sermon. They finally agreed 
that the governor and the council should each 
alternately appoint a chaplain of their choice, and 
the right of selection having fallen to the council, 
that board appointed Mr. Turner. The governor 
and his party were disturbed by this appointment, 
and Mr. Gray, the treasurer of the colony, being 
present, expressed the hope that Mr. Turner would 
not, on that occasion, at least, forget the important 
maxim that prudence is a virtue. This remark 
was doubtless designed as a caution to Mr. Turner, 
but James Otis replied that he would pledge him- 


self in behalf of Mr. Turner that he would not, on 
this occasion, forget to speak a word in season. 

Election day arrived, and the country parson 
was found equal to the occasion. He affirmed that 
Christianity, instead of countenancing any en- 
croachments upon the civil and religious rights of 
the people, gave its most solemn sanctions to their 
support. The governor winced under the sharp 
admonitions of the preacher. He was observed to 
change color repeatedly, and once to rise from his 
seat, as if about to leave the house. But resuming 
his seat, he heard the sermon through. However, 
he neglected to invite Mr. Turner to the public 
dinner, which custom made proper, and even 
demanded. But when the guests were assembled 
at the table, moved either by the promptings of his 
better judgment, or the advice of friends, he sent 
a messenger to find Mr. Turner and invite him in. 
But he returned after an hour's fruitless search, and 
the dinner proceeded without him. Meanwhile 
Mr. Turner was enjoying a good dinner in the 
house of a friend, in company with a few warm- 
hearted Whigs. But the governor could not easily 
forget the sermon, and declared " there was as 
much treason contained in it as ever had been 
vented from the Independent Chronicle^' the lead- 
ing Whig paper at that time in the colonies. Mr. 


Turner was threatened with personal vengeance, 
and his house of worship, standing in an exposed 
situation, near the sea-shore, was once nearly sur- 
rounded by a mob of armed men, and he was 
obliged to escape through a window, and flee for 
safety among his friends. It was under such cir- 
cumstances that he thought best to resign the 
pastorate in Duxborough, in accordance with the 
advice of friends, whereupon he returned to his 
paternal residence in Scituate. 

The next year ( 1773), he was chosen a member 
of the Senate of Massachusetts, and was almost 
continuously a member of that body until 1788; 
and that year he was a member of the convention 
to ratify the Constitution of the United States. 
Although he entered with zeal upon these political 
and civil labors, and discharged the duties incum- 
bent upon him with ability and fidelity, he never 
for a moment ceased to lose sight of his ministerial 
character and obligations. He believed that a dis- 
pensation of the gospel had been committed to 
him, and that the chief duty of his life was to 
preach the unsearchable riches of Christ. He 
considered that no situation in human society in 
which he could enlighten the minds, or improve 
the condition of any portion of his fellow men, 
was to be shunned by the Christian philanthropist. 
Hence, in 1789 he went to Castle William, in 


Boston Harbor, in which the public convicts were 
confined, and labored faithfully as a chaplain, for 
two years, among that degraded class of people."^ 

In his religious views and feelings he was liberal 
and charitable, declaring " that he would suffer no 
intolerance in his own heart unless it was against 
intolerance itself." He was an intimate friend of 
the learned Dr. Chauncy, of Boston, and coincided 
with him in the belief that all lapsed intelligences 
would ultimately be restored to a state of holiness 
and happiness. In 1791 he removed his family to 
Turner, and preached in this town and in Hallowell 
for parts of a number of years. In 1803 he was 
chosen one of the electors of President and Vice 
President, and visited Boston for the last time in 
the discharge of that official duty. Soon after 
this, the infirmities of age compelled him to cease 
from all public employment, and professional labors, 

* Anecdotes. When Mr. Turner was about commencing his 
labors upon Castle Island, he had great fears that his efforts 
would be in vain among such a class of people. On expressing 
his misgivings to his friend, Eev. Mr. Hichcock, of Pembroke, he 
received this counsel, Go on with good cheer, for conviction is 
but the necessary preliminary step to conversion ; and he would 
find his whole congregation under conviction to his hand. 

The notorious Stephen Burrows, who, with a bundle of stolen 
sermons, had, in some of his peregrinations, passed himself off 
as a minister of the gospel, especially in the town of Pelham, was 
a convict in the Castle when Mr. Turner arrived there, and was, 
for some act of insubordination, confined at that time in a cell. 
Burrows, on hearing that a minister had come among them, wrote 
Mr. Turner a complimentary note, saying that he was a brother 
minister, and was ready to give him every assistance in his power, 
and that he should be happy to commence an acquaintance by an 
exchange of places for the next Sabbath, if such an arrangement 
would suit his convenience. 


and the remainder of his days was spent in the 
quiet and peace of home. In this retirement from 
public life, his virtues and graces of character were 
less known to the world, but more fully appreciated 
by neighbors and friends. His knowledge of books, 
and extensive acquaintance with men and things, 
made him an interesting and instructive companion, 
w^hile his happy temperament made him a pleasing 
and genial associate. He died in Turner in 1818, 
in the eighty-sixth year of his age. He left two 
sons, the Honorable Charles Turner, of Scituate, 
and General John Turner, of Turner; and two 
daughters, Mrs. Eunice Torrey, of Scituate, and 
Mrs. Persis Thayer, of Turner. 

Rev. Charles Turner has no lineal descendants 
in the town, bearing his name. His sons, William 
and Charles, came here in 1780, but remained only 
one season, when they returned to Scituate. Will- 
iam died young, but Charles attained to years and 

At the commencement of the late war with Great Britain, a 
requisition was made upon the town of Turner for a detachment 
of the militia to hold themselves in readiness at any moment to 
march for the defence of the sea-coast or frontier of the State. 

Captain Stephen Turner, a brave man, who afterward gloriously 

ll in the battle of Bridge 
the militia companies of the town, and when he assembled his 

fell in the battle of Bridgewater, at that time commanded one of 

company to make the detachment, he exhorted his townsmen not 
to disgrace their patriotic fathers. Captain Turner then requested 
every man who was willing to stake his life in defence of his 
country, and to hold himselt in readiness to march at a moment's 
waruin^^, for its protection, to follow the music. The music struck 
up, and Mr. Turner was the first one to press into the ranks, 
wnereupon, every man present joiiHtd immediately in the train of 

• # 


honors, fulfilling a successful career of public life 
in his native State. Persis, his youngest child, 
married Abner Thayer, and removed to this town 
in 1 79 1. Her children, with their marrirge con- 
nections were, Abner, who married Harriet Taber, 
of New York City; William T., who died August 
5th, 1803; Sarah K., who married Charles Cush- 
ing ; Persis, unmarried ; Charles, who married 
Amelia Towne; Rushbrooke, who married Harriet 
Warker; John, who married Temperance F. Cush- 
ing; Evelina, who married Elisha Dagget; William 
T., who married Haddasah Davis; Mary, who mar- 
ried Zachariah Hall ; Lucius, who married Sophro- 
nia Chandler; Jane, unmarried; Emma, who died; 
Francis, who married Lois Warker; Harriet, who 
married Micaiah Kelly; Henry, who died Septem- 
ber 4th, 1820; and Henry 2d. 

From Barry's History of Hanover, Massachu- 
setts, we learn that Turner is an ancient family of 
Norman-French origin, which appears in England 
as early as 1067, the date of the Norman conquest, 
when " Le sire de Tourneur" accompanied King 
William in his expedition. Several families appear 
early in New England, among whom are Hum- 
phrey, of Scituate, the tanner, who arrived with 
his family in Plymouth in 1628, and had a house 
assigned him in 1629, and erected a house in which 
he probably lived in 1633. 


Charles Turner, a descendant of Humphrey, 
graduated at Harvard in 1752, and was twenty 
years a minister in Duxbury, was afterward well 
known in political life, was a member of the con- 
vention that formed the Massachusetts State Con- 
stitution, and of that which adopted the Federal 
Constitution, and was also a senator in the State 

Ichabod Bonney was born in Pembroke, Ply- 
mouth County, on the 3d of September, 1737. 
He took a prominent part in the efforts made to 
induce settlers to take up lots in the plantation, as 
will appear by the proprietors' records ; and he also 
took an active part in the struggle for national 
independence, serving as an officer in the revolu- 
tionary army. He removed to Turner in 1803. 
He married Mary Turner, of Pembroke, by whom 
he had the following issue: Ichabod, who married 
Anna Merrill, February 21st, 1788; Mary, who 
married Philip Bradford, April 9th, 1789; John, 
who married Betsey Caswell, August 9th, 1789; 
Sarah, who married William Silley, May 12th, 
1793; Joseph, who married Rhoda Merrill, Febru- 
ary 4th, 1796; Nabby, who married Samuel Blake 
January 27th, 1796; and Sylvia, who died single- 
Mr. Bonney married Rhoda House, September 
13th, 1 801, who survived him several years. He 
died in Turner, February 25th, 1807, sincerely 
lamented by a large circle of friends. 


Joseph Copeland was one of the proprietors of 
the town. He married CeHa Loring, of North 
Yarmouth, and removed to Turner in 1790. His 
intentions of marriage are dated August 1 2th, 1 789, 
the date of his marriage I do not find. His chil- 
dren were, Michael; Phebe, who married Charles 
Staples; Elizabeth; Loring; and Seth, who mar- 
ried Polly Jones. Mr. Copeland died in 1842, 
leaving an aged widow, and was remembered for 
his great honesty and integrity. 

Dr. Daniel Child was a native of Woodstock, in 
Connecticut. He removed to Turner in 1801, 
having married Rebecca Howland, of Pembroke. 
His children were, Daniel, who married Hannah 
Turner; Ruth, who married Ephraim Turner; 
Anna, who married Forest Hatch; Xoa, who mar- 
ried Giles True; Cascarilla, who married Charles 
Lee Turner; Howland, who married Apsah Wing; 
Lyman, who married Appa Hatch; Lydia, who 
married Benjamin Seabury; and Rebecca, who 
died in infancy. Dr. Child died October i6th, 
1802, aged fifty-five years. 

Daniel French removed from Taunton to Turner 
in 1 78 1. His wife was Sarah Sumner, of Taunton. 
His children were, Sally, who married Chandler 
Bradford; Daniel, who married Marion True; Phil- 
ena, who married William Hayford, November 24th, 
1785; Polly, who married John Pumpelly, Septem- 
ber nth, 1788; Waitstill L., who married Anson 


Soule, January 21st, 1792; and George, who mar- 
ried Wealthy Johnson, February i8th, 1799. Mrs. 
Sarah French died in Taunton, April 7th, 1776, 
after which he married the widow Sarah Turner, 
in Turner, February 20th, i ySS, by whom he had 
three sons, Riley, who died in childhood; Charles, 
who married Nancy Caswell, and after her death, 
Hannah Caswell; and Henry, who married Delana 
Leavitt. Daniel French died in 181 3, I think, and 
his widow in June, 1845, ^^ ^^e age of ninety-eight 
years, nearly. 

Joshua Barrell removed from Bridgewater, where 
he married Olive Bass. His children were Su- 
sanna, who married Oaks Whitman, June 17th, 
1790; Jennete, who married John Loring, Esq.; 
William, who married Haddassa Bisbee, June 4th, 
1 801; Samuel, who married Olive Howard, Decem- 
ber 5th, 1822; Elijah, who married Adaline Kim- 
ball ; Azor, who married Lurana Chamberlain, 
February i6th, 1829; Chesly, who married Abagail 
Chase ; and Paschal, who married Salome Bonney, 
and Betsey Hayford. Mr. Barrell died May 25th, 
1828, and Olive, his wife, July 20th, 1834. All 
the people in town by the name of Barrell were 
descended from him. 

Deacon Benjamin True came into town from 
New Gloucester. His wife was Rhoda Merrill ; 
and his children were, Elizabeth, who married 


Nathaniel Daily ; Polly, who married Major Joseph 
Mills ; Sarah, who married Captain Samuel Pum- 
pelly; Giles, who married Xoa Child, April i8th, 
1802 ; Patty, who married Simeon Bradford; Jabez, 
who married Eliza Allen, of Leeds ; Benjamin, who 
married Abagail Staples, July 31st, 1806; Rhoda, 
who married Alpheus Wing, of Wayne ; and Jane, 
who married Obed Wing, of Wayne. Deacon 
True died in Livermore in 18 14, much esteemed 
for his piety, candor, gentleness, and liberality. 

Caleb House removed from Abington in 1784. 
He married Elizabeth Randall, of Pembroke. His 
children were, Rhoda, who married Captain Icha- 
bod Bonney, September 13th, 1801 ; Abagail, who 
married Samuel Herrick, June 14th, 1789; Mary, 
who married Ezekiel Bradford, December 14th, 
1786; Betsey, who married Nathaniel Shaw, June 
15th, 1783; Parmela, who married Nathaniel Beals, 
October 20th, 1 799 ; Caleb, who married Bethiah 
Young, July 2d, 1793; Cyntha, who married Seth 
Rose, May 13th, 1796 ; Anna, who married Zebulon 
Rose, of Livermore ; and Penelope, who married 
Nathaniel Larrabee. Mr. House died March 12th, 
1795. His descendants are numerous. 

Richard Phillips married Ruth Bonney, and his 
children were, Benjamin, who died at sea; Deborah, 
who married Thomas Records ; Abner, who married 
Hannah Haskell; Richard, who married Abagail 


Haskell, December 12th, 1796; Isaac, who married 
Mary Stephens, December 12th, 1799; Gaius, who 
died early; Jairus, who married Silence Briggs, 
December 15th, 1785; Chloe, who died single; 
Ichabod, who married Polly Baily ; Ruth, and 
Lydia, who died single; Benjamin, who married 
Jennet Allen ; and Cyntha, who married John 

Jasial Smith removed from Taunton, where he had 
married Anna Grossman. His children were, Laban, 
who married Molly Bryant ; Hannah, who married 
Samuel Andrews ; Nancy, who married Moses 
Stephens ; Seba, who married Aphia Stephens ; 
Jasial, who married Rachel Purington ; Asa, who 
married Jane Niles ; Keziah, who married James 
Waterman ; Rachel, who married John Strickland ; 
and Ghloe, who married Dr. Gharles Hays. 

Henry Jones removed from Taunton, where he 
had married Phebe Richmond, in 1799. His chil- 
dren were, Polly, who married Abner Jones, Octo- 
ber 5th, 1800; Henry, who married Relief Triboo, 
December nth, 1803; Hannah, who married Seth 
Staples, September 26th, 1802 ; Richmond, who 
married Mary Bryant; Phebe, who married Hart 
Briggs, November 13th, 1814; Joanna, who mar- 
ried Gasander Gary, February 3d, 1819; Amy, who 
died, June 29th, 1792, at the age of four years; 
Amiel, who died, September 12th, 1802, aged two 


years; Amy 2d, who married a Mr. Myric; Aba- 
gail, who married Tilden Jones, August 15th, 181 3 ; 
and David, who died, October 3d, 181 7. 

Benjamin Jones married Tabitha Leavitt, of Syl- 
vester, and his children were, Isaac, who married 
Luna Dillingham ; Benjamin, who married Jennet 
Niles ; Abijah, who married Joanna Allen ; Libeus, 
who married Hannah Roberts ; Hira, who married 
Betsey Allen ; Galon, who married Rispa Briggs ; 
Sally, who married Warren Richmond ; Tilden, 
who married Abagail Jones; Asia, who married 
Stella Blake ; Africa, who married Lydia Records ; 
Tabitha, who married Daniel Briggs ; Sylvia, who 
married Benjamin Briggs; Jennet, who married 
Salmon Reckords, Jr.; Julia, who died young; and 
Julia 2d, who married Jefferson Bray. 

Sylvester Jones removed to Turner in 1797, from 
Taunton, where he had married Deborah Lincoln, 
and after her death he married her sister, Mercy. 
His third wife was Mercy Pratt. His children 
were, Sylvester, who married Lydia Grossman ; 
Gornelius, who married Saba Bryant ; two sons, 
and a daughter, who died at Taunton ; Deborah, 
who married Dan Pratt; Sybil, who died single; 
Apollos, who married Prudence Ghase ; Abner, 
who married Polly Jones ; two children that died 
in infancy; and Barnum, who married Betsey 


Deacon Daniel Merrill came into Turner, from 
New Gloucester, in 1776; the Merrill families in 
town were descendants of his. His children were, 
Rhoda, w^ho married Benjamin True ; Joseph, who 
married Elizabeth True ; Jabez, who married Han- 
nah Sawyer ; Benjamin, who died single ; Levi, 
who married Sylvia Leavitt ; Moses, who died 
single ; Anna, who married Ichabod Bonney, Jr. ; 
and Daniel, who married Clarissa Record. 

Governor William Bradford was born in York- 
shire, England, in March, 1589, and died. May 9th, 
1657. He came to this country in the May Flower, 
in 1620, and was governor of Plymouth Colony 
thirty years. November 30th, 161 3, he married 
Dorothy May in Holland. She was drowned in 
Cape Cod Harbor, December 7th, 1620. She left 
a son, who died without issue. August 14th, 1623, 
he married the widow, Alice Southworth. His chil- 
dren were, William, born June 17th, 1624, and died 
February 20th, 1703; Marcy, born in 1626; and 
Joseph, born in 1630. William married Alice 
Richardson by whom he had ten children ; his 
second wife was Mrs. Wiswall, who left one child. 
His third wife was Mrs. Mary Holmes, widow of 
Rev. John Holmes, by whom he had four children. 
Ephraim, the second child by his third wife, was 
born about 1680-5, ^^^ married Elizabeth Brewster, 
by whom he had a large family of children, all born 
in Duxbury. 


Ezekiel Bradford, the eighth child of Ephraim, 
was born in 1728, and married Betsey Chandler, of 
Duxbury, in which town, it seems, his children were 
born. He was one of the early settlers in Sylves- 
ter, as also were several of his sons. His children 
were, Ephraim, who married Judith Moulton ; Will- 
iam, who married Assenath Mason ; Deborah, who 
married Barnabas Winslow ; Jesse, who married 
Judith Weston; Rebecca, who married William 
True ; Chandler, who married Sarah French ; Eze- 
kiel, who married Mary House; Martin, who mar- 
ried Prudence Dillingham; Philip, who married 
Mary Bonney; and Elizabeth, who married Daniel 

Mrs. Caroline W. D. Rich, wife of Professor 
Thomas H. Rich, of Bates College, furnishes the 
following interesting sketch of her grandfather's 
life, Mr. Joseph Leavitt: — 

My maternal grandfather, Joseph Leavitt, was the son of 
Jacob Leavitt, of Pembroke, Massachusetts. His mother's 
maiden name was Sylvia Bonney. He was a lineal descendant 
of John Leavitt, who was born in England in 1608, and came 
to New England in the year 1628, and settled in Dorchester, 
Massachusetts. In 1636 he removed to Hingham, Massachu- 
setts, where he became influential in town affairs, holding many 
offices of trust, being magistrate of the town, and representa- 
tive to the General Court several years. He also held the 
office of deacon in the church. He died in 1691, aged eighty- 
three years. 

Some of his descendants went to New Hampshire, some to 


the Province of Maine, and some to Connecticut. Many of 
them were college graduates, and quite a number were minis- 
ters. The subject of this sketch enlisted in the Continental 
Army at the breaking out of the War of the Revolution. When 
his term of enlistment (three months) expired, he felt that he 
could not fight. He said, " Some must stay at home and raise 
bread " ; others might fight, but he " would raise bread for 
them." His comrades gave him the name of Quaker Joe, on 
account of his peace principles, a cognomen which he always 
bore among his friends. He came to the Province of Maine at 
the age of eighteen, as an assistant to the surveyors employed 
by the government to lay out the townships on the Androscog- 
gin. He was much pleased with the township of what is now 
Turner, and told the surveyors that he should return and settle 
there, and wished them to select a lot for him. They said, 
jokingly, " Well, Joe, you will like to go to meeting, so we will 
give you a lot next to the meeting-house lot." And that was 
the spot on " Upper street," where he made his home, and 
where he lived and died. The place is still known as the 
Leavitt Place. The spring following the survey, young Leavitt 
returned to the township alone, living in the heart of the 
wilderness, with only savages about him. The nearest white 
inhabitant was twenty miles away. He remained through the 
summer, finding the Indians friendly, and often doing them 
a kindness, which resulted in securing their loyalty to himself. 
He was obliged to transport all his supplies on his back through 
the forest. His friendly relations with the Indians made it 
possible for him to do so. The most powerful tribe was the 
Algonquins, who claimed the hunting grounds from the Andro- 
scoggin Valley to the Penobscot. My grandfather's stories, 
and the incidents related to his children, were treasured by 
them in memory, and were traditions full of romance to his 


The indomitable perseverance of my grandfather enabled 
him to fell the forest, and make a *' clearing," in which he 
erected a block-house. He then went back to Pembroke, 
Massachusetts, and spent the winter. The next summer he 
returned to the township, and put in seed, anticipating a good 
"crop", which he realized at harvest time. After the crops 
were put in, he went to Bakerstown (New Gloucester) and 
bought nineteen young apple-trees, which he carried on his 
shoulders through the forest by a " spotted line " to his new 
home. He planted them near his house, and the next year one 
apple grew and ripened, the first apple in a town that has since 
been celebrated for its superior apples. At the time he planted 
his trees, he also planted some apple seeds on a piece of land 
that had just been burnt, and he used to say that half the seeds 
parched and burst open, the ground was so hot when he planted 
them. The same summer he left his clearing in the care of 
friendly Indians and went back to Pembroke, his native town, 
and married Anna Stevens. He brought his bride on horse- 
back, seated on a pillion behind himself, from Pembroke, Mass., 
through New Hampshire into the wilderness of the " Province of 
Massachusetts " to his home in the little clearing. Her effects 
were transported on other horses, in saddlebags and portman- 
teaux. From Bakerstown they had only a " blazed line " to fol- 
low j often the young bridegroom was obliged to dismount and 
hold the limbs of trees away for her to ride under them. Some- 
times she had to dismount and cross a brook on a fallen tree, 
which served as a bridge. The journey from Pembroke to the 
home in the wilderness occupied several weeks, a most romantic 
bridal tour indeed. As years passed on Mr. Leavitt saw the 
need of a public house for travelers, and as soon as he erected 
a frame house, he opened his doors in the way of keeping a 
tavern, though he never hung out a " sign ", yet his hospitality 
for man and beast was as complete as though he had advertised 
in that way. He built the first frame building in the town, 


which is still an old landmark. He held many offices of trust, 
and represented his townsmen in state councils. His sterling 
integrity and liberal hand won friends while living, and left a 
memory greatly beloved and respected. Like his father and 
earlier ancestors, he belonged with the " Old Standing Order" 
in his church relations. 

His granddaughter, the writer of this sketch, is the daughter 
of Anna Leavitt Stockbridge, who was his sixth child by his 
first wife, Anna Stevens Leavitt. 

Mr. Joseph Leavitt was married three times ; first to Anna 
Stevens who bore him eight children, the oldest being the first 
male child born in the township ; his second wife, Hannah 
Chandler, bore him two children ; his third wife, Elsea Caswell, 
was childless. 

The Leavitt family was remarkable for longevity ; nearly all of 
Joseph Leavitt's children lived the three score years allotted to 
man, and some of them attained a much greater age. The 
patriarch, Jacob Leavitt, was father of thirteen children. He 
was born in Pembroke, Mass., in 1732, removed to Turner 
August 6, 1778, and died January 25, 1814, aged 82 years. 
Mrs. Sylvia Bonney Leavitt was born in Pembroke, Mass., Sep- 
tember 3, 1733, and died December 31, 1810. 

By records found in Washington, D. C. and in Pembroke, 
Hingham, Dorchester, Plymouth and Boston, we trace the line 
of Leavitt back to the Teutons of England. The first authentic 
name is Sire John Leavitt, born in England 1608, and came to 
New England in 1628. His son Josiah, eighth child of John, 
born in 1653, lived in Hingham. He married Margaret John- 
son October 20, 1676. Joshua, son of Josiah, was born in 1687. 
Jacob, son of Joshua, was born in Pembroke in 1732. He and 
Sylvia Bonney were married March 15, 1753 by Rev. Daniel 
Leires. Joseph Leavitt, second child of Jacob, was born in 
Pembroke, in 1757. Joseph Leavitt Jr., first child of Joseph 
Leavitt, was born in Turner (then a township) in 1777. 


According to the birth records of the parish in Pembroke, we 
find that " Sylvia Bonney, daughter of Ichabod and Elizabeth 
Bonney, was born Sept. 3, 1733." She was sister to Lydia 
Bonney (Hamlin), first wife of Eleazer Hamlin, and great- 
grandmother to Hon. Hannibal Hamlin ; so that in the line of 
Joseph Leavitt, the pioneer of Turner, there is a union of Ham- 
lin and Leavitt blood. 

The Hon. Washington Gilbert, of Bath, has fav- 
ored me with the following information respecting 
the Gilbert family in Turner: — 

Elijah Gilbert came into town at an early period, in what 
year is not known, and secured four lots of land, one of which 
was number twenty, and the others were adjacent, or in the 
vicinity. His land embraced a part of the cedar swamp at the 
foot of the " Gilbert Hills," as they were sometimes called, on 
the road leading from the " Upper Street " to the river, between 
the farms of Richard Phillips and Benjamin Jones. 

Elijah Gilbert married, in Plymouth County, Mass., the widow 
of a Mr. Randall, whose maiden name was Hannah Stetson- 
Their children were Josiah, Elijah, Nisa, so-called, but it is sup- 
posed to be Eunice, Caleb, Hannah, and James Drew. 

The children of Josiah Gilbert and Bethany Day, his wife, 
were Daniel, who died young ; Clarisa, who married and moved 
away ; Olive, who married and deceased ; Luther, now living in 
Turner ; Sarah, who lives in Massachusetts ; a daughter, name 
not remembered ; Randall, removed from town, and Lovicea, 

Elijah Gilbert Jr. removed to Chesterville, where he left a 
family of daughters. 

The children of Caleb Gilbert by his first wife, Dianna Curtis, 
were Lewis, who settled in Turner, but at length removed to 
Greene, where he spent a large portion of his life ; Caleb, who 


married a daughter of Ichabod Leavitt, now deceased ; Diana 
who married Alden Rose, deceased; Franklin, who spent his life 
in the town; Melzar, who married Alma Bradford, and is now 
living ; Hiram, who married Sarah Ann Bidwell, removed from 
town ; and one that died in infancy. By his second wife, Achsah 
Burgess, his children were John, who removed from town and 
deceased ; Achsah, who married away ; Elijah, who died in 
early life ; Mary, who married away ; Love, who also married 
away. By his third wife, a Miss Blaisdell, his children were 
Fairfield, Clinton, and one whose name is not remembered. 
These all removed from town. 

The children of James Drew Gilbert and Rebecca Day, his 
wife, were Hannah, who married John S. Leavitt, deceased ; 
Washington, who married Jane Badger, and is a lawyer in 
Bath ; Carolus, who lives in Auburn; James Drew, who married 
and settled in Turner; Roxanna, who married George A. 
Hinkly, deceased ; Octavia, who married the same, lives in 
Newton, Mass. ; Ammi, who died unmarried, and Everline, who 
married Ralph Davenport of Newton, Mass. 

The children of Lewis Gilbert and Eunice Alden, his wife, 
are Ziba A., who married Clara Bradford, and resides in Greene ; 
Osca, who married a Mr. Cole of Lewiston ; Selden, who married 
a Miss Whitmore of Bowdoinham, and is the pastor of a church 
in New Haven, Conn. ; Ellen, who married Horace Bradford of 
Turner, and a son who resides m Massachusetts. 

The following information respecting the Smith 
family is gathered from genealogical tables and a 
communication furnished by Mrs. A. M. Pulsifer, 
of Auburn : — 

Jasiel Smith was born in Taunton, Mass., March 25, 1734; 
married Anna Grossman, April 14, 1757. They continued to 
reside in Taunton for thirty years, and there their children were 


Their children were Hannah, born Feb. 15, 1758, and married 
Samuel Andrews of Berkley, Mass., June 29, 1779, and moved 
into Turner in July. A daughter born July 9, 1759, died in 
infancy. Laban, born Feb. i, 1760, married Molly Bryant in 
Turner. Jasiel, born Feb. 7, 1763, married Rachael Purrington 
of Topsham. Asa, born Aug. 22, 1765, married Jane Niles, in 
Turner. Seba, born June 13, 1767, married Aphia Stevens. 
Nancy, born May 13, 1769, married Moses Stevens, of Turner. 
Keziah, born Sept. 22, 1771, married James Waterman of Tur- 
ner. Chloe, born March 16, 1774, married Dr. Charles Hay of 
Reading. Rachel, born March 25, 1780, married John Strick- 
land of Turner. 

Samuel Andrews, who married Hannah Smith, bought the 
farm on which Rev. George Bates lived many years, on the 
Lower street, now owned by Lewis Briggs, and was probably 
the iirst merchant in town. Reports and traditions are some- 
what confusing, but it seems that he brought his goods from 
Portland on horseback, in saddlebags, and kept them in a 
drawer or cupboard ; that his house was at first a simple roof 
resting upon the ground, which he raised up in due time, plac- 
ing walls under it. As his business increased he devoted more 
space to it, until at length his house became a store, though 
occupied also as a dwelling. From an account book bearing 
date April, 1793, I copy the following charges : — 

s. d. 

I Speling book i 4 

1 Mouse trap 6 

A " Jewsarp " 10 

Fishhook 8 

I penknife 8 

I penknife i i 

Gingerbread and biscuit 6 

I Book 9 

I Biscuit I 

Cakes 2 

Buttings and tacks i 8 


This account will give some idea of the trade in this store 
opened on Lower street so many years ago. It is probable 
that the store had been open for business a considerable time 
when this account was made. 

Anna Crosman Smith, who with her husband moved into 
Turner in June, 1787, possessed a remarkable memory as well 
as poetic gifts, which have been inherited by her descendants. 
An eulogy in verse, written in honor of her great-grandfather, 
Major Thomas Leonard of Taunton, by Rev. Samuel Danforth, 
the associate of Elliot in his missionary labors among the 
Indians, she committed to memory from a printed copy pasted 
upon the wall in her grandfather's house. She was then very 
young, for when she was six years of age the house was burned, 
" but the eulogy was safe in her retentive memory." 

On her eighty-fourth birthday she wrote as follows : — 

This day another year is done 
Since first I drew my breath; 
And here I stand a candidate 
To choose my everlasting state, 
And seal my destiny of fate, 
Of endless life or death. 

Thy wondrous mercy guarded me 
Through childhood, youth and years ; 
Thy hand unseen conveyed me safe 
Through dangers, toils and cares. 
Oh ! let my soul with joy record 
The boundless goodness of the Lord, 
And still repeat his praise. 
Old Age is come with all her train. 
Disease and sickness, grief and pain ; 
But why should living man complain ? 
So let thy will be done. 


She lived to a great age, retaining in a remarkable degree her 
powers of body and of mind. 

Seba Smith, the son of Seba and Aphia Smith, was born 
Sept. 14, 1792, in Buckfield, it is said, though his father, or pos- 
sibly his uncle Laban Smith, once lived on the Lower street, 
where Walter Dresser now resides. He graduated at Bowdoin 
College in 18 18, and settled in Portland as a writer for the 
periodical press. He married Elizabeth Oakes Prince of Port- 
land in 1823. He gained a wide reputation by the publication 
of letters during Gen. Jackson's administration over the signa- 
ture of "Maj. Jack Downing." These letters were witty and 
amusing, being somewhat in the style of Petroleum V. Nasby's 
letters of the present day. They were first published collec- 
tively in 1833, and have since passed through several editions. 
He removed to New York in 1842 where he continued to reside. 
He published " Powhatan," a metrical romance, and other 
volumes, as also many minor poems. His wife, Elizabeth 
Oakes Smith, became a noted authoress and lecturer. The 
productions of her pen are several volumes of prose and verse, 
besides numerous contributions to magazines and other periodi- 
cals. The Smith family was quite numerous, but probably it 
has now no representative resident in Turner. 


The early settlers were located as follows ; — 

Israel Haskell, on lot number 27 

Moses Stevens, " " 32 

Hezekiah Bryant, " " 58 

Joseph Leavitt, " " 53 

Jabez Merrill, " " 58 

Abner Phillips, " " 28 

Richard Phillips, " " 39 

Wm. Bradford, " " 56 



Samuel Blake, on the mill lot 

John Keen, on lot number 


Josiah Staples, 



Daniel Briggs, 



Stephen Bryant, 



Dea. Daniel Merrill, 


Seth Staples, 



Daniel Staples, 


Jacob Leavitt lived 

with his son, Joseph. 

Wm. Hayford, on lot number 

Jotham Briggs, 


Henry Jones, 


Isaac Phillips, 

Ezekiel Bradford, 


Chandler Bradford, 


Jesse Bradford, 


Martin Bradford, 


Daniel French, 


Dr. Daniel Child, 


Dr. Luther Cary, 


Daniel Cary, 


Ezra Cary, 


Joshua Barren, 


The early settlers chose the high lands as best 
for the first crops, hence they selected farms on the 
" Upper Street," so called, and on the " Lower 
Street," which run parallel with each other, three- 
fourths of a mile apart. In lotting the township a 
strip of land four rods wide was left at the westerly 
end of the " Lower Street " farms, but the settlers,, 
preferring the land on the easterly end of their farms 
for the first crops, laid out the road accordingly. 


It is said that the first clearing in the plantation 
was on the farm now owned by Lucius Gary ; yet 
several clearings must have been made nearly as 
early on the other farms. The families that came 
into the town in the first years of its settlement, 
suffered many deprivations and hardships, yet they 
were united in the bonds of a firm friendship, and 
were neighbors, though living miles apart. Their 
first houses were rude structures, though comfort- 
able, but as a saw-mill was built in the year that the 
first settlements were made, they were soon able to 
procure boards for use in building. At first they 
were compelled to carry their corn to New Glou- 
cester, about twenty miles, to be ground; and as 
there were no roads, each man was obliged to take 
his grist on his back and follow the path through 
the woods, or even be guided by spotted trees. It 
was a hard day's work to carry a bushel of corn to 
mill, and return with the meal. But they were 
soon favored with a mill in their own town, when 
carrying a grist to be ground became a pleasure. 
The manner of living was very simple, as the set- 
tlers depended mostly on their farms for the supply 
of their tables. I have heard my grandmother say 
that when the matrons visited each other they 
would very likely have roasted potatoes and milk 
for tea. A simple, frugal diet was enjoyed, and was 
suited to the needs and the circumstances of the 


people. The maple furnished them with sugar, 
their fields with bread, and their pastures with meat 
and the products of the dairy. Many things, now 
become necessaries, were then hardly known as 
luxuries. Their clothing was manufactured at 
home, the flax furnishing material for summer wear, 
and the wool for winter. The busy housewife, in 
addition to the usual cares and duties devolved on 
the head of the family, carded the flax, the tow, and 
the wool by hand, spun the rolls into yarn which 
she wove into cloth for the use of the family. Bed- 
ding and table linen were the fruits of her industry 
and skill. Solomon's description of a virtuous 
woman will apply to the matron among the early 
settlers : " She seeketh wool and flax, and worketh 
willingly with her hands. She layeth her hands to 
the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff. She is 
not afraid of the snow for her household ; for all 
her household are clothed with scarlet." As a 
rule the clothing for church and holiday wear 
was made by hand as well as that for home use ; 
and spinning and weaving by hand did not become 
lost arts until a little more than a generation ago. 
Other wants were supplied in a similar manner. 
My grandfather, Daniel French, was probably the 
first tanner in town. He pounded the hemlock 
bark with a hammer, as he had no mill to grind it, 
and made the hides into leather in the most simple 


manner. He may have contrived to make the 
brook which flowed near his house operate the ham- 
mer that pounded the bark, or perhaps he did all 
the work by hand. With a knife formed something 
like a drawshave, having a hook in one end placed 
in a staple driven into a tall block of wood or a log, 
with a handle at the other end of the knife, he fash- 
ioned his lasts as best he could, and then made 
boots and shoes for his own family and others, as 
he might have a call for the exercise of his artistic 
skill. And for a long time it was the practice of 
the farmers to carry the hides, taken from the cattle 
killed for beef, to the tanner, and when the leather 
was ready for use in the fall, to call in the shoe- 
maker, and have the shoes made for the family. A 
like custom prevailed as to the making of garments 
for the men and boys. The cloth was taken from 
the loom, colored, fulled, and pressed, at the fulling- 
mill, so called, and when finished, the tailor came 
and fitted the menfolks with coats and pants, and 
sometimes with overcoats. Home-spun clothing 
was worn by all the people. 

As soon as the people found it convenient, they 
built houses having a frame covered with boards 
over which shingles were laid. They presented an 
appearance of comfort and neatness. The inside 
was finished, not infrequently, by ceiling the walls 
with boards. Carpets were then unknown, and 


rarely, perhaps, was the floor painted, but nice, 
white sand was procured, sprinkled upon the floor, 
and gently brushed with a broom into various forms 
according to the taste of the housewife, to make it 
look attractive. The custom of dressing or deco- 
rating the floors of the best rooms in this manner 
prevailed for a long time among certain classes of 
the people. When the people found it convenient 
to build good houses, they built them large and two 
stories high. Nearly all the best houses of the 
early settlers were of this description, and some of 
them now remain, to indicate the taste and aspira- 
tions of the farmers of that period. 

Stoves and furnaces had not been thought of 
then, it is probable, and each room was furnished 
with a brick fire-place ; that in the kitchen, or living- 
room, being very large, capable of holding a huge 
pile of wood. These great fires sent out a cheery 
warmth and glow, which made the rooms pleasant 
and summer-like in winter's cold, and invited con- 
versation and story-telling with neighbors in the 
long evenings. All the cooking for the family was 
done over or about the great open fire, except as 
the brick oven was brought into use. And some- 
times a long seat made of boards, with a high back, 
called a settle, was a part of the kitchen furniture, 
and made a comfortable seat for the children, when 
drawn up near the fire on a cold day or evening. 


The roads were not good, and wagons had not 
come into use. The people were in the habit of 
riding on horseback, the man seated on a saddle, 
and the woman on a pillion behind him. Parties 
for pleasure-riding enjoyed themselves in this man- 
ner, and they not infrequently enjoyed the excite- 
ment of a fast ride as well as gentlemen and ladies 
now in their carriages. In the same way the 
people made journeys on business or pleasure. 
Even the early representatives to the General Court 
in Boston went on horseback, taking their clothing 
in saddle-bags. The journey to Boston, made in 
this way, required several days; and probably no 
one then even dreamed that after a half century the 
journey would be made in a few hours while seated 
in a carriage more richly furnished than any parlor 
then in town. The people rode to church in the 
same manner, and not infrequently they would 
" ride and tie " if the place of worship was a consid- 
erable distance away. One, or perhaps two, would 
mount the horse and ride a portion of the way, 
when they would dismount, tie the horse by the 
road-side, and proceed afoot. When the other 
party came up with the horse, they would mount, 
and ride on past their companions, when they in 
turn would tie the horse and proceed afoot. In this 
way they accomplished the journey to and from 
church. The same mode of traveling was equally 


convenient on other occasions when all could not 
ride at the same time. In a few years the roads 
were better and wagons were introduced, but as 
^they were large and heavy, and not furnished with 
springs, riding in them was not without some 

The business of the early settlers was, of course, 
clearing up their farms and raising crops suited to 
their wants, and raising such live stock as their 
needs required. Each family, each neighborhood, 
was, in a sense, a community by itself, not only 
raising the farm products which supplied the table, 
but manufacturing their own clothing from the raw 
material, and living in a great measure independently 
of other communities and of the great world out- 
side. When the seasons were propitious and the 
harvests abundant, plenty crowned their board ; but 
an unfavorable season involved them in more or less 
of suffering, for transportation between their town 
and distant places was next to impossible. But 
with industry and economy they secured the neces- 
saries and comforts of life, and the wolf of want 
rarely entered their doors. In the winter season 
they engaged in lumbering operations to some 
extent if not on a large scale. The town was noted 
for its forests of pine of the best quality, and many 
of its majestic trees were sought for masts and 



Mr. Samuel Blake built the first mills for sawing 
boards and grinding corn in 1775, by contract with 
the proprietors of the township, for which he 
received one or two lots of land, and certain mate- 
rials to be used in the erection of the mills. This 
mill was totally destroyed by the great freshet in 
1785. Hon. Job Prince, in his history of Turner, 
prepared for the Atlas of Androscoggin County, 
says : " This was a serious misfortune to the settlers, 
and their first resort was to dig out mortars in 
which to pound their grain. When the water sub- 
sided, a small mill was constructed on the brook, 
east of ' Meeting-house Hill,' by which a scant 
supply of meal was obtained until the ice of the 
succeeding winter put an embargo upon operations. 
To increase the supply, Samuel Andrews made a 
mortar in which corn was pounded by wind power. 
In the course of the next season, Blake's Mills were 
rebuilt, and have been in successful operation since, 
except for a short period in 1856 when they were 
burnt, but were soon rebuilt again." Oliver Pollard 
became the owner of these mills probably about 
1800, or a little later, and they remained in his 
possession until about 181 7 when he exchanged 
property with Col. Cyrus Clark who lived on the 
hill in Minot, now known as West Auburn. He 
built over the saw-mill, and continued to operate it 


for many years. The grist-mill remained in his 
possession until his death, I think, when it passed 
into the hands of his son, Gen. Philo Clark, who 
rebuilt it in 1856, after the destructive fire of that 
year, and made it one of the best mills in this sec- 
tion of the state. After his death, in the summer 
of 1885, Mr. North bought the mill. The saw-mill 
changed hands several times. Solon Chase and 
Daniel French were the owners when it was burnt, 
March 12th, 1856. It was rebuilt at once, and was 
soon in readiness for use. Charles Blake and Asa 
Jones bought it, but at length it was owned solely 
by Mr. Jones, who had control of it until the au- 
tumn of 1885, when he sold his interest to Charles 

At an early period a fulling-mill, so called, was 
built, probably by David Gorham. In this mill the 
woolen cloth manufactured in hand looms in the 
homes of the farmers was prepared for use. That 
designed for women's wear was colored and pressed ; 
while that designed for men's wear was fulled, 
colored, and pressed ; and if for Sunday use, it was 
sheared, so as to give it a nicer appearance. At 
the first the shears were operated by hand, but in 
due time they were operated by water-power, which 
was a great improvement. About 18 15, Alanson 
Cary came into possession of the mill, but did not 
succeed in the business, and soon gave it up. Isaac 


Gross was the owner for many years and did a 
flourishing business. He became so skillful in 
dressing cloth that his mill was patronized by the 
farmers to a considerable distance away, and during 
the autumn and early winter his mill presented a 
busy scene. Becoming aged, he gave up the busi- 
ness, and it was soon discontinued, for the custom 
of buying cloth ready made at the factories prevail- 
ing, the fulling-mill ceased to be patronized. 

About 1800, the father of Nathan and John Cole 
built an oil-mill and set up a machine for carding 
wool. At that time the farmers were in the habit 
of raising flax, and an abundant supply of seed for 
the manufacture of oil was easily obtained. These 
mills were run night and day in their season. Mor- 
rill Cole bought out his brother Nathan's interest, 
and the mills were operated by him and his brother 
John. The business was continued for many years 
with good success. John Cole was ever bubbling 
over with fun, and he took pleasure in playing 
harmless tricks upon boys, and others who came to 
his mill. Many amusing anecdotes are related of 
him. Payne Merrill and Melzar Gilbert at length 
bought the oil-mill, but it was closed about 1836. 
When the farmers ceased to raise flax, the supply 
of seed for the mill was not at hand; and the cus- 
tom of selling the wool, instead of manufacturing 
it at home, greatly diminished the business of wool- 


William B.Bray, George Mitchell, and Dea. Hiram 
Donham enlarged the building in which the card- 
ing machine had been placed, and for about ten 
years carried on an extensive business in the manu- 
facture of churns, pails, and washtubs. These 
churns were cylinders, and the paddles inside for 
exercising the cream were turned by a crank. 
These churns found ready sale far and near, and 
large numbers of them were thrown upon the 
market. But this building, with its machinery, 
lumber, and finish for a church which was about 
to be erected in the village, was consumed in the 
fire of 1856, which destroyed the other mills near 

On the site of the oil-mill John Donham erected 
a carriage factory, and was engaged for a number 
of years in the manufacture and repair of carriages 
and sleighs. After the fire mentioned above, he 
rebuilt, and in a few years enlarged his building, 
thus securing ample space for the different depart- 
ments of his work, and for circular saws, a planer, 
and other machinery useful in his business. Ad- 
vancing in years, he sold the property to Benjamin 
Knapp, who still owns it, and is kept very busy in 
his line of work. 

In another part of the village Mr. E. Fernald 
has a carriage factory where he does all kinds of 
work that one in his business may be required to 


do. He makes wagons and sleighs, irons them and 
paints them, and does all manner of repairing. He 
has facilities for doing these various kinds of work. 
He has been in the business at his old stand for 
many years, and is still actively engaged in it. 

In 1836 General Alden Blossom obtained from 
the legislature an act of incorporation, constitut- 
ing him, his associates and successors, a body cor- 
porate for the purpose of manufacturing cotton, 
wool, iron, and steel, to be known as the Turner 
Manufacturing Company, and empowering them to 
hold and employ for that purpose a capital of not 
more than fifty thousand dollars. The first meet- 
ing of this corporation was held in the month of 
October of the same year, when Hon. Job Prince, 
Major Hiram Clark, Isaac Gross, Esq., General 
John Turner, and Mr. Charles Snell were chosen 
for their board of directors. At this meeting the 
stock of the company was made to represent one 
hundred shares of one hundred dollars each, and 
at a subsequent meeting as many more shares were 
voted. Funds were raised by selling shares in the 
stock, and an amount was secured sufficiently large, 
as supposed, to cover the whole expense. The 
stock sold amounted to twelve thousand dollars. 
The foundation was laid, bricks procured, and the 
building erected. A canal had to be blasted out of 
the solid ledge in which to bring the water from 


the dam to the factory, a distance of several rods. 
The funds raised were all consumed in this work, 
and as there were no means with which to purchase 
machinery and set it in operation, the building 
stood some years unoccupied. At length Thomas 
Harback, usually called Major Harback, put in an 
old set of machinery, the owners giving him the 
use of the building two years ; but after the expira- 
tion of this time he was to pay them two dollars 
and a half per share a year for the use of it. He 
made nice cloth, suitable for men's wear. The 
business next passed into the hands of a Mr. 
Thomas, who manufactured the same kind of 
goods. He talked much, and seemed to promise 
great things, but in a few years came out at the 
little end of the horn. Cyrus Cole and Washing- 
ton Long, of Buckfield, were his successors, and 
did a good business a number of years. Morrill 
Cole owned it, or an interest in it, for awhile. At 
some time a Mr. James manufactured flannel for a 
short period. It has been difficult to ascertain the 
dates so as to give an exact history of the factory. 
R. B. Dunn became an owner, but accomplished 
little or no work while he held it in possession. 
Finally, Mr. Faulkner bought the property, the 
original owners selling their shares at a large dis- 
count. This seemed to be the only way of saving 
anything out of their original investment. Mr. 


Faulkner manufactured flannels, but the fire of 
1856 put a period to his operations. The mill 
remained idle several years, but at length it was 
enlarged, and put in operation, and its machinery 
has been running most of the time until the pres- 
ent. F. T. Faulkner, son of the former owner by 
this name, is the present proprietor, and under his 
supervision the factory is doing a good business. 

Mr. Faulkner started up the mill the last time in 
the spring of 1879. He runs four sets of forty- 
four-inch cards, and twenty-four broad looms. He 
gives employment to over forty hands, and manu- 
factures from twelve to fifteen thousand yards of 
twilled flannels per week, which are colored either 
blue or scarlet. He consumes, in the manufacture 
of these goods, from two hundred thousand to 
three hundred thousand pounds of wool in the raw 
state, annually. The machinery is driven by a five 
feet Improved Tyler Wheel, and the mill is heated 
by steam generated by a tubular boiler. Many 
cords of wood are consumed annually in heating 
the mill and coloring the goods. 

William B. Bray, Sen., probably opened the first 
store in the village. He continued in business 
several years. He died in middle life from injuries 
received in the saw-mill. Oliver Pollard was a resi- 
dent of the village in 18 10, and owned the mills, 
but was not engaged in trade. He remained here 


until about 1817, when he made an exchange of 
property with Colonel Cyrus Clark, of Minot, now 
Auburn, who thus became the owner of the mills. 
He soon built a store, and was in successful busi- 
ness until the time of his death, in the winter of 
1835-6. His son. General Philo Clark, built a 
store close by his residence in 1831, and continued 
in business till about 1849, when he leased his store 
to Jesse and Hira Bradford, who were in company 
eight years, since which time Hira Bradford has 
continued in trade by himself alone at the old 
stand. William Harris opened a store at about 
1825, and continued in the business ten or twelve 
years. In those early times traders dealt quite 
largely in West India goods, which meant sugar, 
molasses, and rum. There were no railroads in 
those days, and freight was moved mostly by ox- 
teams. It was no unusual thing then to see an 
ox-team coming into the village with a hogshead of 
molasses, two hogsheads of rum, with smaller pack- 
ages of choicer liquors, to supply the wants of the 
people. And in the time of haying and harvesting 
it required a hogshead of rum a week to keep the 
laborers in good condition for work. Indeed, 
liquors were in constant demand for all occasions, 
for the raising and moving of buildings, for sol- 
diers on parade or other duty, for the ordination or 
installation of ministers, and for social occasions in 


the homes of the people. A great change has 
been effected in public sentiment, and in the cus- 
toms of society in regard to the use of intoxicating 
drinks, and the impression that some seem to have 
that society is becoming corrupt, is here shown to 
be erroneous. It would now be a strange sight to 
see a good deacon standing beside the rum casks, 
dealing out liquors to the men who are engaged in 
raising the frame of a church in which he has a 
special interest. But once this was thought a 
proper thing to do. 

In March, 1823, William B. Bray Jr., opened a 
store, and continued in business a number of years. 
Possessing energy and business capacity, or in- 
sight, he uniformly succeeded in whatever he 
undertook. His brother Jefferson became the 
owner of the store, and managed the business for 
a few years. Hiram Clark was interested for a 
series of years in the store which his father. Colo- 
nel Cyrus Clark, had occupied. It is neither easy 
nor necessary to enumerate all the names of the 
men and the firms which have succeeded each 
other in trade here. Jesse Bradford spent most of 
the active period of his life in business in the 
village, and his son, William, is his successor. 
William B. Bray, after engaging in business in 
other places, returned to the village, and had a 
store while engaged in the manufacture of churns. 
He was afterward in company with John Blake. 





William L. Bonney began trade here many years 
ago, on the north side of the river, and in company 
with another, or by himself, has remained in the 
same store to the present time. 

Lucius Dresser began the business of a tanner 
about 1840, and for a portion of the time has done 
a large amount of work. In 1886 he sold his 
tannery to Charles Willard, who converted it into 
a factory for the manufacture of boxes. 

John Blake and son went into the stove and tin- 
ware business about 1850, and in April, 1867, 
William H. French engaged in it, and continues 
to make it a success. 

About 181 7, Aaron Rogers and Caleb Bourne 
opened blacksmith shops, and industriously ham- 
mered out their fortunes on the anvil unto the last. 
Numerous have been their successors, each in his 
time doing the work his hand found to do, and 
there are those who are doing it still. 


Jesse Bradford, General John Turner, and 
Henry Jones built a saw-mill and grist-mill at 
Turner Center, formerly known as Bradford Vil- 
lage, in 1795. The privilege was bought of Joseph 
Copeland, or a lease of it was secured for nine 
hundred and ninety-nine years. A condition of the 
lease was that if at any time no mills were main- 
tained on the privilege for four years in succession, 


the lease should be null and void. The lot on 
which the privilege was situated was sold to David 
Hood, subject to the lease above mentioned, but 
he came under bonds of two hundred dollars not to 
interfere with the mill lot. The grist-mill was burnt 
not long after its erection, but was rebuilt by Jesse 
Bradford and General Turner, and was in success- 
ful operation many years. A shingle machine and 
clapboard machine were set up at the time the 
Masonic building was raised at the village, about 
1834, in May. It was very cold for the time of 
year, the ground freezing so that farmers could not 
plow. A northwest wind blew the spray from the 
dam upon the north end of the grist-mill, and by 
this means it was soon covered with a coat of ice. 

A fulling-mill was built at an early day, and Hira 
Bradford colored, pressed, and dressed cloth in it 
about seventy years. Hartson Bradford, then a 
mere lad, turned the shears to shear the cloth. 
William Harris bought a half interest in the 
fulling-mill, and Jefferson Bray worked in it three or 
four years, dressing cloth. Anson Gott then bought 
the mill, and used it for the manufacture of wooden 
bowls. Joseph Ludden purchased the grist-mill 
after Jesse Bradford's death, about 1830, and kept 
it in operation so long as it stood. He and Hart- 
son Bradford became owners of the saw-mill. 
Hosea Cushman had for a time a blacksmith shop 



in which a trip hammer was operated by water- 
power. All these mills were in operation until 
carried away by a great freshet about 1845. This 
freshet washed away the rights of the mill-owners, 
Anson Gott and Hartson Bradford, and then there 
was a contest as to the ownership of the privilege 
between the heirs of Joseph Copeland and David 
Hood. The Hoods added several acres to the 
privilege on the west side of the river, and sold 
their interest in it to Lyman Eustis and Eland 
Fuller, who continue to be the owners. The privi- 
lege, though the best in the town, has remained 
unoccupied to the present time. There was, indeed, 
soon after the freshet which proved so destructive, 
an offer made to the owners under the lease by 
parties who wished to improve the water power, but 
Mr. Gott was unwilling to sell his interest for the 
sum offered, and the waters have flowed without 
restraint down the rapids to the present hour. 

At an early period Leonard Richmond built a 
store, a house, and a shop for the manufacture of 
reeds used in weaving cloth in hand looms. The 
house was the old one recently torn down, standing 
opposite the residence of Aubrey Leavitt. Thomas 
Additon, Joel Fairbanks, and William Mitchell, 
worked at reed-making a number of years. The 
reeds were widely sought for when the people 
manufactured their own clothing in their own 


homes. But the manufacture of reeds ceased 
when the carding machine and fulling-mill became 

Samuel Wood, of Winthrop, did business in the 
store four or five years, when Hartson Bradford 
and Gushing Mitchell bought it, but after two 
years H. Bradford became sole owner, and con- 
tinued the business two years more, when he built 
the store which now constitutes a part of Grange 
Hall. He remained in this building about seven 
years. During the latter part of this time his 
brother Jesse was associated with him in business, 
and continued in it after the senior member of the 
firm retired. Joel Paine, whose wife was a sister of 
Henry Humphrey, was in trade for a time in the 
store. At length it was sold to Allen Bonney, 
who did a small business for a few years; but he 
went to the far West and never returned. Hira 
Bradford opened a variety store in the place, and 
continued in business several years. 

George Turner opened a grocery store in a small 
building near his house, that in which James B. 
Walker now resides. He afterward bought the 
store constituting a part of Grange Hall, and con- 
tinued in business until the infirmities of age made 
it necessary to retire. Mr. Wing succeeded him, 
but did not remain very long. Though so many 
were engaged in the business, there were many 


years in which there was no store, not even a 
grocery, in the place. After the grange was insti- 
tuted it was thought desirable to have a store for 
the accommodation of its members, and a grocery 
was opened by Aubrey Leavitt, but in a short time 
the grange ceased to have any interest in it. In a 
few years this was closed by the will of the pro- 
prietor. Not long after this, Lewis P. Bradford 
opened a first-class country grocery in the Grange 
Hall building, and still prosecutes the business 
with success. 

As the farmer's family, for many years after the 
first settlement of the town, manufactured the cloth 
for the use of the members, spinning-wheels must 
be had. To supply the demand for these, Hanibal 
Thompson opened a shop for the making of these 
wheels, and for many years he prosecuted the busi- 
ness at Turner Center. Wheels for spinning flax 
were entirely different from those for spinning 
wool; the former were called "little wheels," and 
the latter, "great wheels." It was necessary that 
each family should have one of each kind, and if 
much spinning was to be done, two or three, 
especially of the "great wheels." Mr. Thompson 
was a good mechanic, and his spinning-wheels were 
widely known and sought for. He prosecuted his 
business for many years, and being remarkable for 
ready wit, his shop was an agreeable place in which 


to spend a leisure hour. He lived to a good old 
age, but in the last years there were few calls for 
his work, as in the change of customs, spinning- 
wheels, carding machines, and fulling-mills, all went 
down together, and became things of the past. 

At an early period Reuben Thorp established a 
pottery for the manufacture of brown earthen-ware, 
the first and only one ever operated in the town, 
and the house in which he lived has remained a 
memento of his life and time, until recently. 


The first settler inside of one mile from the 
center of the village, was Caleb House Jr., who 
made himself a home on what is called House's 
Hill, in or about the year 1792. He was a farmer, 
and the father of ten children, all born upon the 
same farm, except the two oldest, and nine of whom 
grew up to manhood and womanhood. The first 
settler at the village was Caleb Gilbert, who built a 
saw-mill, if not a grist-mill. He built and lived in 
a little log house on the right bank, or southwest- 
erly side, of Martin Stream, according to the testi- 
mony of " one of the oldest inhabitants." He must 
have made this beginning as early as 1800, or even 
earlier, for in 1803 said Gilbert deeded to John 
Keen, then a resident of Sumner, all his interest in 
the west half of lot number two hundred and thirty- 


eight, and the west half of number two hundred 
and thirty-nine, "except so much thereof as has 
been taken or may be taken for roads." The above 
described premises cover the present mill-site, the 
consideration being sixteen hundred dollars. A 
copy of this deed is now in the possession of Ben- 
jamin Keen, Esq. John Keen moved on to his 
possessions in January, 1804, since which time the 
mill property has, for the most part, been in his 
hands, or the hands of his posterity. 

About the year 1806, the first dam, built by Mr. 
Gilbert, was carried away by a great freshet, but it 
was speedily rebuilt. Near the year 18 14, or 181 5, 
the saw-mill was burnt, evidently the work of an 
incendiary, as scraps of birch bark were found in 
board-piles, partially burnt. In 1818 the grist-mill 
was also burned, the origin of the fire being a mys- 
tery. The mills were rebuilt by John Keen Jr., 
now gathered to his fathers. The first wooden- 
bowl factory in the State was set up by one James 
Hale, of New York State, who prosecuted the 
business about a year, then sold his interest to 
Josiah Keen, on the 17th of November, 1820, and 
returned to his home. 

The next enterprise was a carding and clothing 
mill, built by John A. Kimball, and a shop for the 
manufacture of carriages by Essec Fuller. About 
1855, William B. Bray, the first merchant of note 


in the place, built the store and dwelling attached, 
now occupied by Lewis A. Farrar, and commenced 
quite a business in the boot and shoe line. 

In the year 1817, Edward Blake, Stephen, and 
John Gammon built a saw-mill at or near the foot 
of Bear Pond, and near the village. Here they 
erected the first machine in the county for saw- 
ing clapboards, and operated it successfully several 
years, turning out no knotty spruce, but the clearest, 
choicest pumpkin pine clapboards. 

Barzillai Streeter, Esq., one of the famous family 
of preachers, once practiced law here. Dr. John 
Drake was for several years an active and success- 
ful physician, and at a later period. Dr. Young, all 
self-made men. The earliest residents were Caleb 
House and wife, Caleb Jr. and wife; then James 
Torrey and wife, who raised up a large family, 
nearly all of whom passed away before he did. 
Joseph Merrill, the first blacksmith in the place, 
long ago finished his work, and none of his chil- 
dren remain. Dr. Timothy Howe and family, save 
one; Jabez T. Merrill and family, and others, have 
gone from us. Reuben Libby, who could split, 
shave, and bunch more pine shingles in a day than 
any other man in town, has laid down the tools of 
his craft. Cornelius T. Richardson, the first black- 
smith in the village proper, and who made the first 
spring-steel pitchforks in these parts, is among 







c ^ 



f ^ 


those who live in memory. John Keen, Sen., the 
early mill-owner, with all his numerous family, have* 
ceased from the activities of earth. He dwelt in a 
house, not a very elegant structure, standing on the 
site of L. A. Farrar s store. His wife was a famous 
spinner of linen thread, weaver of cloth, and the 
like. Ephraim Turner, Sen., by trade a carpenter, 
passed the latter half of his life in this vicinity. 
Other names might be mentioned. The first set- 
tlers were obliged to journey to New Gloucester 
for their groceries, nor did they think it a hardship, 
not even to saddle their horses and ride to Boston 
on business. 

Several industries are now prosecuted in the 
village, as in past time, in addition to which Benja- 
min Keen and Company have erected a building 
for the manufacture of fancy and other chairs of 

The above information was kindly furnished by 
Benjamin Keen, Esq. 

keen's mills. 

The village which bears this name is in the 
easterly part of the town, near the mouth of the 
Twenty Mile River. Nathaniel* Robertson was the 
first settler on the south side of the river, and built 
a saw-mill in about 1798. Benjamin Allen settled 
on the north side of the river, and built a grist-mill 


about 1800. These were the first mills in the place. 
Hanover Keen came into the place in 1805, and 
became owner of the grist-mill, which was carried 
away by a freshet in 18 14, but was rebuilt, and has 
been in use until the present time. It has been 
owned and operated for many years by his son, 
Nathaniel Keen. Adna Gilmore built an iron 
foundry about 1820, and for many years made cast- 
ings for the people in the town and vicinity as they 
had need. He was a mechanic, possessing skill and 
genius, and the products of his foundry were seen 
in the houses, and about the premises of a large 
part of the inhabitants. A carriage shop was built 
by. Chase and Lord in 1834. Sarson Chase was a 
superior workman, and everything made by him 
was well and nicely done. He could do all the 
work on a carriage or sleigh, from the beginning to 
the finish, in a style which few could excel, or even 
equal. His last years were spent in Massachu- 

The first settlers in the place were Nathaniel 
Robertson, Benjamin Allen, GrinfiU H. Keen, and 
Prince Waterman. The last named, the father of 
Deacon Thomas Waterman, of Turner Village, 
was the first blacksmith, and there was no one to 
succeed him in the business until 1835 or 1836, 
when John Warren set up the business in the base- 
ment of Chase and Lord's carriage-shop. For 


some years a Mr. Stevens has done the blacksmith 
work. Many years ago Cyrus French purchased 
the saw-mill, removed the up-and-down saw, put in 
a circular saw for sawing boards and timber, a 
machine for planing boards, and other machinery. 
About 1870, A. K. P. Gilmore erected a large build- 
ing on the site of the old foundry, which was 
designed for various industries, but is used at pres- 
ent as a saw-mill. A Mr. Alden, a perfectly blind 
man, opened a store here, which he managed suc- 
cessfully for a number of years. After him William 
Andrews went into trade, but three or four years 
ago closed out his goods, and engaged in the busi- 
ness of manufacturing ready-made garments for 
men's wear. A post-office was established here in 
1873, and Mr. Andrews has been post-master nearly, 
if not quite, all the time from the first. About 
1875, Fred Wing opened a grocery store, which is 
now the only one in the place. 

chase's mills. 

Bani Teague built a saw-mill here about 1 790 or 
1795. A grist-mill was built about ten years later, 
and the saw-mill was rebuilt. Southard Wash- 
burn bought the mills about 181 5, and owned 
them several years. Joseph Howard, an excellent 
mechanic, repaired the mills, making great improve- 
ment in them. He went west or south to make 


mills for ginning cotton. Colonel Isaac Bearce 
built the " Mansion House," so-called, and had an 
interest in the mills at one time, but receiving 
serious injury in repairing the "bulk-head," he dis- 
posed of his interest, but whether he remained in 
the place, or moved away, our informant saith not. 
Jairus Allen bought the' saw-mill, and operated it a 
number of years. William Lombard bought the 
grist-mill, and continued in business through the 
active period of life. In 1818 or 1820, a Mr. 
Phelps put in a machine for sawing clapboards, 
the building used for the purpose being about forty 
feet by twenty-five. This was the first machine of 
the kind in the vicinity. Isaac Chase came into 
the place, a young man, in 1820, and soon built a 
house, that in which his son Otho now lives; he 
also built a store, and became an active business 
man, and a prominent citizen. Up to this time the 
mills had been located on the right hand side of 
the bridge, across the stream, several rods above 
their present site. The dam erected at that point 
caused the low lands on the north and east to be 
overflowed in the time of high water, thus making 
them nearly valueless. Isaac Chase bought the 
saw-mill about 1835, when it was decided to remove 
all the mills to their present location below the 
bridge. In 1837 Mr. Lombard began to turn bowls, 
mortars, and wagon-hubs, and the grist-mill ceased 


to be operated. He continued in the business until 
the infirmities of age forbade. Thomas G. Burdin, 
a young man, came to learn the trade, or to work 
in the mill on some terms, gained an interest in the 
family, and in due time succeeded to the business. 
He ceased to make bowls and mortars, and gave 
his attention to turning hubs. His business became 
large and prosperous, and in 1884 he erected for 
himself one of the best residences in town. His 
mill was burnt in the winter of 1884, but was soon 
rebuilt and is in successful operation again. C. Carol 
Chase, the grandson of Isaac Chase, now owns the 
machine for sawing shingles, and controls the saw- 
mill. He manufactures large quantities of shingles, 
boards, and other lumber. 

Solon Chase began the publication in this place, 
of ''Chases Chronicle^^ January 2d, 1875, ^^d his 
connection with it continued until 1879, when it 
had a circulation of six thousand copies. It was 
then moved to Portland, its name changed to 
" Greenback Labor Chronicle'^ but was suspended 
in about a year. ''Chases Enquirer'" was started 
March i8th, 1880, by a stock company, under the 
management of Solon Chase. The company be- 
came dissatisfied with the management, took the 
paper from the editor, and moved it to Lewiston in 
October, 1881. It was suspended in six months. 
When it was removed it had a circulation of three 


thousand copies. March 15th, 1882, he started 
another paper called " Them Steers',' in which the 
"anti-fusion idea" was vigorously advocated. But 
this "idea" was not sufficiently popular to enable 
even a popular editor to win success under such a 
flag, and the paper was discontinued May 21st, 
1883. The rooms in which these papers were 
printed were over Thomas G. Burdin's hub factory, 
which was consumed by fire March 20th, 1885, and 
in this fire the press, types, and fixtures were 


There is a small village in the northeast part of 
the town known by the above name. The bridge 
spans the Androscoggin River, connecting the town 
at this point with Leeds, formerly in Kennebec 
County. In 1825 the people of this place and 
vicinity became interested in the project of build- 
ing a bridge here, and petitioned the legislature for 
an act of incorporation, which was secured the 
next year. This company was organized January 
20th, 1827, by the choice of Edward Blake, Walter 
Foss, and Nathaniel Perley as a board of directors. 
Dr. Timothy Howe was chosen general agent, and 
Thompson Hall, of Norway, architect. The bridge 
was built in 1828, was two hundred and sixty feet 
long, thirty-two feet wide, and cost about five thou- 


sand dollars. At its completion, dedicatory exer- 
cises were held, at which there was rejoicing and 
congratulation, and Dr. Howe made an address. 

This bridge was carried away January 27th, 
1839, by the great freshet which swept away the 
bridges at Turner Center, Jay, Canton, and other 
places. The bridge was rebuilt in the summer fol- 
lowing, at a cost of about five thousand dollars. 
Mr. George Emerson superintended the building. 
The work was successfully accomplished, but when 
it was nearly done, he fell from the top upon the 
eastern abutment, and injured his spine so seriously 
that he died December 2d, 1839. Aaron Soule, C. 
T. Richardson, and Isaiah Lara were the directors, 
and Joshua Whitman clerk. 

Colonel Lee Strickland had a variety store in 
the place for several years previous to 1833, and 
was post-master. At the date mentioned, he sold 
out to Church P. Leavitt, who continued the busi- 
ness, and was post-master twenty-three years. At 
one time there was considerable travel on the river 
road and across the bridge, and a stage ran across the 
country from Paris to Augusta, crossing the river 
at this place, and there seemed to be some grounds 
for hope that Dr. Howe's prophecy respecting the 
growth of the village and the increase of travel 
would be fulfilled. The store not only furnished 
the needed supplies for the families in the vicinity, 


but was a convenient center for many who wished 
to talk over the news of the day, and find refresh- 
ment for the inner man. Mr. Leavitt chose to 
conduct his store on temperance principles. He 
built a hotel which he kept for ten years, when he 
leased it to other parties. The railroads were an 
injury to the business and thrift of the village, since 
they changed the course of travel, and caused the 
hopes that were at one time cherished, to perish. 
For many years there has been but little to enliven 
the place but a small country grocery and a black- 
smith shop. 


Before the railroads were built an effort was 
made to secure direct communication between 
Oxford County and Augusta, the capital of the 
State. A route from Paris through Buckfield, 
Turner, and Monmouth, on to the capital, was 
planned, a new road built some portion of the way, 
leading across the Androscoggin River at a point 
about midway between the northern and southern 
bounds of Turner, and at one time a mail was 
carried across the country over this route. A 
bridge became necessary to accommodate the pro- 
spective travel, and an effort was made to secure 
one. The legislature granted the request of the 
petitioners for an act of incorporation. 

At a meeting held in February, 1834, the corpo- 


ration voted to build a bridge, and " to furnish no 
spirits " to the men employed on the work. Pro- 
posals were received for the piers, abutments, and 
wood-work in separate jobs. In the fall of 1835 
the bridge was opened to travel, and the efforts of 
the corporation were crowned with success. The 
great ice freshet which occurred in January, 1839, 
was destructive to bridges, and the Turner Center 
Bridge suffered with the rest. The corporation,, 
not discouraged, held a meeting in February of 
that year, and voted, forty-five to eight, to rebuild 
their bridge. It seems that the piers were swept 
away as well as the superstructure, for it was voted 
to do the stone-work by the day, while bids were 
invited for doing the wood-work. The bridge was 
completed that season, and by autumn was open 
again to travel, and paid fair dividends to the stock- 
holders, though it was more valuable for the accom- 
modation it furnished to the neighbors and the 
traveling public, than as a money investment. 

In the spring of 1863, it appears that the bridge 
suffered again from a freshet, for in May of that 
year it was voted, "That J. W. Webster be agent 
to stick up and take care of that part of the bridge 
we saved." Immediate action was taken for rebuild- 
ing, but it was only by persistent effort that the 
means were secured for the work. The shares 
changed hands in a lively manner, indicating that 


many were anxious to sell that they might not be 
liable to another tax. The money, as an invest- 
ment, was flowing in the wrong direction; the 
bridge and the money both seemed going down 
stream together. But the difficulties were overcome, 
twenty-five new shares of stock were created and 
sold, funds were raised, and the bridge was rebuilt, 
but not until 1868. The bridge was now con- 
sidered better, perhaps, than ever before, and the 
corporation hoped it would long remain for the 
accommodation of the public, and be a source 
of profit to its owners. But in the summer of 
1876, July 14th, a terrible cyclone passed that way, 
uprooting trees and wrecking everything in its path, 
took the bridge in its course, and hurled it into the 
river, amidst such a roar of elements that the crash 
of the falling structure was not heard by those who 
were nearest to it. And on the 7th day of August, 
the corporation voted " to take measures to remove 
the wreck of their bridge from the river." The 
corporators made some effort to rebuild, and held 
their annual meetings for a few years, but January 
5th, 1880, they adjourned to the 24th of that 
month, but there is no record of a meeting at that 
or any subsequent time. 


The surface is undulating for the most part, 
though there are, in some portions of the town. 


rugged hills. In the southern portion there is 
quite an extensive plain which has never been con- 
sidered desirable for cultivation, and has remained 
in its natural state, except that the wood and lumber 
have been removed as they came to maturity. In 
the western portion of the town there are hills, but 
on their sides, and in the valleys between, there are 
good farming lands. Much of the soil is a rocky 
loam, excellent for pasturage and the production of 
hay. It also produces the crops usually grown in 
Northern New England, and the judicious farmer 
secures good returns for his labor. The people are 
engaged for the most part in agriculture, and though 
not wealthy, as this word is generally used, are in 
good circumstances, possess the comforts of life, 
and are independent. Their buildings are generally 
suited to their needs, in good repair, and pleasing 
in appearance. 

The rocky loam is adapted to orcharding, and 
apples and other fruits are grown in abundance. 
There is a good orchard on nearly every farm, 
while on some there are large orchards. Mr. Albion 
Ricker raised twelve hundred barrels of apples in 
1885, besides pears and other fruits. This may not 
be regarded as an extraordinary harvest, though it 
may be more than an average one. Hon. Rufus 
Prince, David J. Briggs, the Messrs. Blossom, Lewis 
B. Staples, Rackley D. Leavitt, and others have 


large orchards. A large proportion of the trees 
have been grafted, and the Baldwin is the favorite 
apple for the market, though others are produced 
in considerable quantities. 

There are two cider-mills in town at which large 
quantities of cider are made from fruit worth but 
little for other purposes. The owners of these 
mills, G. W. Blossom and Lewis B. Staples, make 
the apples into cider, giving three gallons for each 
bushel, and receiving three cents per gallon for their 
labor. This is a great improvement on the former 
custom, which was, that each man made his own 
cider, paying for the use of the mill. The interest 
in fruit growing is increasing, and apples grown in 
Maine have a flavor and possess keeping qualities 
which secure for them a good reputation in the 
market. There are many orchards in town that 
have not yet come into bearing. 

The dairy business is, perhaps, the leading one 
in town, a large part of the farmers being engaged 
in it, and several of them quite extensively. The 
farmers have given special attention to the improve- 
ment of their dairy herds, and the Jersey cow is 
uniformly selected as the best adapted to their use. 
Some claim that Turner stands first in the State as 
a dairy town; and it is certain that if any other 
town challenges her right to this claim, she will 
find in Turner no mean competitor for the coveted 


The cheese factory at Richmonds Corner, usually 
designated as North Turner Cheese Factory, was 
started in the spring of 1874, by Perkins Torrey, 
Rackley Leavitt and one or two others. The sum 
of $2500 was raised for the purpose, a building was 
erected, and Ira Mason began to make cheese in 
June of that year. Only 2,648 pounds of milk were 
received in one day ; 600 cheeses were made, weigh- 
ing eight tons. The enterprise proved successful, 
and the product of cheese has increased from year 
to year under the faithful management of Mr. 
Mason, and the capital stock has been increased to 
$3000. In 1885 over 35 tons of cheese were made, 
and 5200 pounds of milk were received in one day. 
The factory was in operation from April 27th to 
October 21st. The cost to the patrons for making 
is one and one-fourth cents per pound, and the divi- 
dend received by the shareholders is eight per cent. 
The cheese has a good reputation in the market, 
and commands a good price and ready sale. The 
present year promises to be equally successful as 
the preceding, and the same man has charge of it, 
this being his thirteenth year in the factory. 


This association was organized in February, 1882, 
in accordance with the law of the state, and a board 
of officers was chosen. Its object was declared to 
be the manufacture of "butter, cheese, and evapo- 


rated apples." A constitution and by-laws were 
adopted, and subscriptions to the capital stock, 
amounting to $1,345.00 were secured. A building 
was erected, and all the apparatus needed in the 
manufacture of cheese provided. The services of 
George A. Young were secured and the factory went 
into operation in June. It was conducted with a 
fair degree of success, but many farmers in the 
vicinity did not patronize it because they preferred 
to make butter. About thirty-two tons of cheese 
were made, and found a ready market at remunera- 
tive prices. During the next winter the subject of 
making butter was discussed, but the Association 
not favoring a change in the business, the season of 
1883 was devoted to cheese-making with a fair 
degree of success, but in the autumn, rooms were 
fitted up in the basement of the cheese factory for 
the manufacture of butter, the machinery and vari- 
ous appliances for the business were procured, and 
Edwin L. Bradford began to make butter February 
4, 1884. One hundred pounds were made the first 
day, and nearly that amount was made daily through 
the winter. It was a new enterprise and every- 
thing had to be learned, but the product of the 
factory was received with favor and took rank with 
the best makes in the markets of Boston and other 
cities. The success was such that the stockholders 
were not in favor of making cheese, though the 
rooms used for that purpose were unoccupied. 


In the eleven months ending with November, 
1885, there were collected 162,566 inches of cream, 
and 79,628 1-4 pounds of butter made. The butter 
sold for $19,751.26, to which must be added the 
receipts for cream, buttermilk, and salt bags, $490.24, 
all amounting to $20,241.50. The amount paid the 
patrons was $16,796.52, leaving $3,444.98 for ex- 
penses, interest, etc. The expense of collecting the 
cream, making and marketing the butter, was a 
little over four cents per pound. The amount now 
made per day is 450 pounds, and finds a ready 
market in the cities, and places of summer resort on 
our coast. 

There are several farmers who choose to make 
their butter at home. Among these are Eransus 
Merrill, who makes about 2,900 pounds a year and 
receives a good price for it from a commission mer- 
chant in a Massachusetts city, who has received it 
for years; Nathaniel Merrill who makes about 2,500 
pounds a year and supplies customers who seek a 
choice article; Russel Merrill who makes about 
2,200 pounds a year and has city customers ; and 
Roscoe Dillingham who makes about 4,700 pounds 
a year and supplies customers in the adjacent 


The first county road through the town passed 
along the Upper Street, so called, and probably 


down by Mr. Barrell's, through the woods, by the 
residence of Dea. Martin Bradford, where Alden 
Briggs now lives, over Dillingham hill to North 
Auburn, thence over West Auburn hill and Perkins' 
Ridge to Minot Corner, known formerly as Groven- 
eur's Corner, through Poland and New Gloucester 
on to Portland. The road was extended north 
from the " Upper Street " as the needs of the 
settlers required. Inquiry makes it probable that 
this was the road traveled for many years to and 
from Portland, and that this was substantially the 
route by which the first settlers reached the planta- 
tion when the road was a path through the woods, 
and spotted trees served as guide-boards. 

The first post-office in town was established in 
1804, and Ichabod Bonney was appointed post- 
master. His death occurring soon after. Gen. 
Alden Blossom was appointed his successor. For 
a number of years the people were favored with a 
weekly mail only, carried on horseback. When the 
postman approached the office, he sounded a trum- 
pet to notify all hands within hearing that he was 
near, that they might be prepared for his reception 
by their presence and attention. For twenty-five 
years or more the town had enjoyed no postal facil- 
ities, and now a mail brought once a week into 
their very midst, and its coming announced by 
sound of trumpet, moved them not a little. For 
were they not highly favored .f^ Josiah Smith and 


William Sawin were the mail carriers in those 

In 1825, a new post-office was established at 
Turner Village, and William K. Porter was ap- 
pointed postmaster. A new county road was made 
through the town, much easier for travelers than 
the old one, being over land much nearer level, so 
that the old road was used but little. The first 
post-office now accommodated only the neighbor- 
hood and was discontinued, the post road not lead- 
ing by it. William K. Porter was postmaster until 
his death, I think. The mail, after a time, was 
carried in a stage-coach drawn by four horses, and 
was brought three times a week each way. John 
Blake was postmaster till about 1848 when Hiram 
Clark was appointed his successor, and continued 
in office about ten years, or until his death. 

Hira Bradford took charge of the office October 
22, 1 86 1, and retired from it April 22, 1869. 

Mellen A. Bearce was postmaster from April 23, 
1869, to March 31, 1881. 

William L. Bonney had charge of the office from 
April I, 1881, to October 19, 1885. 

Walter B. Irish became postmaster October 20, 

The stage ran from Farmington to Portland 
through Turner every other day, and on alternate 
days from Portland to Farmington, until the rail- 


road was built to Auburn when that place became 
the terminus of the stage route. 

The post-office at East Turner was established in 
1 83 1, and Ezekiel Martin was appointed postmaster. 
He retained the office twenty-five years. The mail 
was brought at first on horseback from Winthrop, 
probably once a week. At length it was carried 
from Auburn up the river road. Hooper Conant 
carried the mail at an early period over this route, 
if he was not the first to carry it. A post-office was 
established at North Turner Bridge shortly after 
that at East Turner, and was supplied in the same 
manner. At one time, before the railroads were 
built, it was attempted to establish a stage line 
and mail route across the country from Paris to 
Augusta, and for awhile the mail was carried thus. 
This was about 1841 and later. But stages could 
not compete with railroads, and when the latter 
were constructed the stages were compelled to 

John W. Webster was appointed postmaster at 
East Turner in 1856, and continued in the office 
till 1863, when James D. Gilbert was appointed his 
successor, and cared for the office until 1874. R. S. 
Coolidge was postmaster two years. In 1876 John 
W. Webster was appointed again and served until 
his death in September, 1881 ; when the present 
occupant was appointed, Warren Webster. This, 


as well as all the other offices in town, is favored 
Hvith a daily mail each way. 

The post-office at North Turner was established 
at an early day, and Dr. Timothy Howe was ap- 
pointed postmaster. Lewis A. Farrar has had 
charge of the office for many years, discharging 
the duties thereof in a manner satisfactory to all 
persons and parties. This was on the old route 
from Farmington to Portland, but for a long while 
the mail has been carried daily each way between 
this place and Auburn. 

The post-office at Turner Center was established 
February 24, 1873, and Lewis P. Bradford ap- 
pointed postmaster. The first mail was delivered 
March 13, 1873; and no change has been made by 
new appointments since. 

The post-office at Keen's Mills was established in 
1873, and William Andrews was appointed post- 
master, but on account of a pressure of private busi- 
ness he resigned recently, and Fred Wing was 
appointed his successor. 

At South Turner Charles H. Barrell was ap- 
pointed postmaster January 25, 1875; he received 
his commission February 13th following, and the 
first mail was received the 15th of March ensuing. 
No change has been attempted in this office. A 
stage runs daily from Auburn, by South Turner, 
Turner Center, East Turner, Keen's Mills, to North 
Turner Bridge. 


The post-office at Chase's Mills was established 
in December, 1874, and Solon Chase appointed 
postmaster, who still holds the position. This office 
is served by a mail carried from Turner Village to 
Buckfield, a distance of six miles. 


The history of the first church and society in the 
town was written by Rev. Allen Greely, and pub- 
lished in the Ecclesiastical History of Maine, by 
Rev. Jonathan Greenleaf. This history is doubtless 
correct, and will be read with interest, and is as 
follows : — 

The Plantation was visited in 1776 by the Rev. Charles 
Turner, who the year before had been dismissed from the church 
in Duxborough. He preached to the few who lived in the 
place, and baptized two of the children of Mr. Haskell. * He 
made a second visit in 1799, received some into covenant rela- 
tion, and baptized several children and one adult. Nothing 
further was done at that time respecting organizing a church. 
Among the families which removed into the plantation was 
that of Deacon Merrill who belonged to the church in New 
Gloucester, and he usually led in the exercises of the religious 
meetings among the settlers. For five years after Mr. Turner's 
second visit, the plantation was not favored with the visits of 
any ministers except the Rev. Mr. Brown, of Westbrook, and 
the Rev. Mr. Nash, of Gray, who spent each a Sabbath or two 
with them. In the summer of 1784, the place was visited by 
the Rev. John Strickland, who had previously been settled in 

* The children baptized on the first visit were Asa and Elizabeth Haskell, and on the 
second visit, William Bradford and the following children: Mary Haakell, Edward 
Keen, Gad Hayford, Hannah Merrill, and Edward Blake. 


the pastoral office twice ; first at Oakham, Massachusetts, and 
afterward at Nottingham West, in New Hampshire. He was 
born in Hadley, Massachusetts, and graduated at Yale College, 
in 1669. Not long after Mr. Strickland came to the place, 
measures were taken to organize a church, which was done in 
the Presbyterian form, August 16, 1784. 

The following paper, signed in Sylvester, July 11, 1799, by 
Charles Turner Jr., Israel Haskell, Jacob Leavitt, Daniel 
Briggs, Daniel Staples, Jabez Merrill, and William Bradford, 
but omitted by Mr. Greely, is worthy of preservation : 

** We, whose names are hereunto subscribed, inhabitants of 
the plantation of Sylvester, or preparing to settle there, appre- 
hending ourselves called of God into the church state of the 
Gospel ; admiring the wonderful grace of God in condescending 
to deal in a covenanting way with the sinful children of men ; 
confessing our great unworthiness to be so highly favored of 
God as to be admitted into covenant with him, and humbly 
relying on those aids of grace the Gospel furnisheth to those who 
humbly and sincerely seek them, and of which we acknowledge 
ourselves to stand in the greatest necessity ; do now thankfully 
lay hold on the evangelical covenant and would choose the 
things which please God. We declare our session's belief that 
the Scriptures are the inspired word of God, to the great doc- 
trines of which we desire to conform our faith, and sincerely 
promise to conform with all diligence and good conscience our 
tempers and our lives to the excellent directions and precepts 
of Christianity as long as we live in the world. At the same 
time we oblige ourselves to take a laudable care of the relig- 
ious Christian education of the children whom God hath gra- 
ciously given or may give unto us. And all this we do, flying 
to the blood of the everlasting covenant for the pardon of our 
errors, and praying that the glorious Lord, who is the Great 
Shepherd, would prepare and strengthen us for every good 


work to do His will, working in us that which is well pleasing 
to Him ; to whom be glory forever. Amen." 

The church was composed of fifteen members, twelve men 
and three women. The plan of a church government was 
approved by the people assembled as a congregation, and Mr. 
Strickland received the united and unanimous call of the church 
and congregation to become their pastor. On the twentieth of 
the next month (September, 1784), the " Sabon Presbytery" 
assembled, consisting of Rev. Nathaniel Whitaker, d.d.. Rev. 
Samuel Perley, and Rev. John Urquhart, with which Mr. Strick- 
land was connected, at Sylvester, for his installation. On this 
occasion Mr. Urquhart offered the introductory prayer, Dr. 
Whitaker preached from 2 Kings 2: 19-22, and Mr. Perley 
gave the charge. At the time of Mr. Strickland's settlement, 
the families in town were about thirty, containing probably 
about two hundred souls. 

After his settlement, Mr. Strickland enjoyed peace in his 
connection with the people for a number of years, and the 
church increased to about thirty members. Six years after his 
settlement, the minds of the people became divided, and at 
length a majority in regular town meeting voted for his dismis- 

With this proposal Mr. Strickland did not see fit to comply. 
Those who were alienated from him, now joined with a number 
of people of Buckfield and petitioned the General Court for an 
act of incorporation as a Baptist society. The act was passed 
November 17, 1792, by which sixty-one persons were incorpo- 
rated. Twenty-four of these lived in Turner. In less than 
two years, twenty persons more joined this society, and the 
adherents of Mr. Strickland were left few in number. 

* This was a trying tune to Mr. Strickland. He had a large family to support, and 
the number of his true friends was very small. His means were limited. At a meet 
ing called March 12, 1792, to consult about his dismission, fourteen voted in favor and 
only four against. 


Nevertheless, in consequence of their desire, he consented 
to continue their minister, agreeing to relinquish such pro- 
portion of his salary as the taxable property of those who 
left bore to the whole town. After this the number of Mr. 
Strickland's friends diminished by deaths and removals, so that, 
in 1795, it was thought advisable, under existing circumstances, 
to solicit the advice of an Ecclesiastical Council. 

The churches of Harpswell, Brunswick, Freeport, and Tops- 
ham composed this council. The pastors of these churches, 
with a delegate from each, met September i6th, and after 
attending to such statements as were made to give a view of 
existing difficulties, the council advised that Mr. Strickland 
should continue his pastoral connections with the church for 
one year, and if the difficulties should then subsist, he should 
ask a dismission, and the church and people should grant it. 
At the same time, in view of this event, the Council recom- 
mended Mr. Strickland as a man of unimpeached character, 
and sound in the faith. After the expiration of the year, things 
being no more favorable, it became a question with the church 
whether another council were necessary, and having ascertained 
that it was not, after some delay, a dismission was granted to 
Mr. Strickland by the church and the people. May 18, 1797. 

For several years after Mr. Strickland's dismission, the place 
was a spiritual wilderness. The church was diminishing by 
death and removals of members, and the few that remained 
had so little of the life and power of religion, that they did not 
maintain public worship. 

The town being without a minister, complaint was made 
against them in the fall of 1802 to the Court of Sessions of the 
Peace,* '*for neglecting to provide themselves with a public 
teacher of piety, morality, and religion." 

The town, by their agent, appeared before the court, and 

• laaiah Bonney was the witness against tlie town in this case, and Daniel Howard, 
Esq., was chosen to appear in behalf of the town. 



pleaded that they were unwilling to contend, and desired to have 
longer time to comply with the law. Being thus excited to do 
something for the support of a minister, Mr. Strickland, who 
still continued to reside in town, and Rev. Charles Turner, who 
had resided in town from 1792, were each employed for a time. 
After both had preached the term of time agreed upon by each, 
a call, with certain conditions, was voted by the town for Mr. 
Turner to settle in the work of the Gospel ministry.* The 
church, having previously selected Mr. Strickland to the pas- 
toral office, voted not to concur with the town, but to adhere to 
the election they had made. 

In this election of the church, the town refused to concur. 
There being this disagreement between the town and the 
church, there could be no further proceedings in relation to 
either candidate. As the church had been six years destitute 
of a pastor, and their members had become much diminished 
by several members withdrawing themselves and uniting with 
other denominations, and by the death and removals of others ; 
and, as but imperfect records had been kept of the proceedings 
of the church, and it not appearing distinctly by the records of 
the church who belonged to it, some, dissatisfied that the church 
did not concur with the town, denied that a church existed 

This induced the church to call an Ecclesiastical Council, to 
advise them in their difficulties, and to determine whether they 
were a church. A council, as requested, assembled on the i8th 
of October, 1803, and after attending to a representation to the 
existing state of things, gave it as their unanimous opinion that 

* At a public meeting held May 25, 1803, the town voted " unanimously to settle the 
Rev. Mr. Charles Turner in the ministry, upon condition the pastoral relation be dis- 
solved at the option of either of the contracting parties, and on condition he accept of 
four dollars and one half per week during the time he shall actually supply the pulpit, 
and on condition the church will give him a call to settle in the place." A committee 
was also raised " to request the church to give the Rev. Mr. Charles Turner a call, 
agreeable to the above conditions." 


the church was not extinct. The church then, in presence of 
the Council, voted to change their form to that of a Congre- 
gational church, and seven male members subscribed a confes- 
sion of faith and covenant. * 

Previous to these transactions of the church, Mr. Amasa 
Smith, a candidate for the Gospel ministry, being on a journey, 
and passing through the town, was employed by the inhabitants 
to supply them with preaching. After having preached a num- 
ber of weeks, the church unanimously gave him a call to settle 
with them. The town concurred in the invitation, and Mr. 
Smith was ordained there May 23, 1804. 

The inhabitants of the town were not fully agreed in the set- 
tlement of Mr. Smith, f and the immediate consequence of it 
was the establishment of a society of Universalists, in which 
fifty-four persons were incorporated, and thirty others joined 
them within a year. These measures left the Congregational 
part of the inhabitants free to organize themselves as a distinct 
parish, in which capacity they have since acted. 

The lands which had been reserved for the use of the minis- 
try in the town, and those for the use of schools, had been sold 
a little before this by order of the Legislature, and the proceeds 
vested in a Board of Trustees, to be applied for the respective 

* This matter must have awakened a deep interest, for on Jime 15, 1803, the town, in 
public meeting, voted "to choose a committee to inquire into the standing of the 
church, and to make such otlier inquiries relative to church discipline as they shall 
think necenary." The town also seems to have been determined to settle a minister 
independently of the church, for having chosen a committee to " supply the pulpit with 
preaching," they instructed tlmt committee to ascertain If the proceedings of the town 
were legal, and if legal, then proceed agreeable to their mission in supplying the town 
with preaching." 

t At a meeting held September 26, 1803, the town chose a committee to wait on Mr. 
Smith and ascertain if he would "supply the pulpit four Sundays longer." Tlie meet- 
ing wa« adjourned to October 24th, when it was voted, twenty-four to fifteen, to invite 
Mr. Smith to become their pastor. Tlie meeting then adjourned to November 7th, 
when a motion having been made to reconsider the vote of invitation, it was voted to 
give Mr. Smith a call to settle in the town, forty being in favor and twenty-five 
The large vote at this meeting shows the interest felt in the question. 


purposes for which they were designed, as soon as the interest 
of the school fund should amount to two hundred dollars, and 
the ministerial, when it amounted to three hundred and fifty 
dollars. The school fund became productive in 1808, and the 
ministerial fund in 181 1.* 

As there was no assistance from the ministerial fund for the 
support of Mr. Smith, and as nearly half of the town had 
become a distinct society and were not taxed in raising his 
salary, the burthen upon the remaining part was considerably 

It had been agreed between Mr. Smith and the people, at his 
settlement, that, when two-thirds of the people requested it, he 
should be dismissed. In the spring of 1806, a meeting was 
called to consider the subject, but two-thirds were not found to 
vote for the proposed dismission. A committee was chosen, 
however, to consult with Mr. Smith with regard to the subject, 
and he and they agreed that his dismissal should eventually 
take place. It was finally accomplished October 7th, of the 
same year, and on the 2 2d of the same month he was installed 
pastor of the Second church in North Yarmouth. 

The ministry of Mr. Smith at Turner was short, but, it is 
hoped, not wholly without good effect. Much of the seed of 
divine truth was sown, but the extent of the harvest, viewed in 
all its consequences, can be known only to God. Eight per- 
sons, while he was in the pastoral office, became members of the 

After the dismission of Mr. Smith, four years passed away, 
and the church was destitute of a pastor. During this period 
the place was visited by several missionaries, mostly from the 
Hampshire County Missionary Society. 

In the spring of 18 10, Rev. Allen Greely began to preach 

* May 28, 1802, the town voted that " Luther Gary, Esq., Mr. William Bradford, and 
Mr. John Loring be a committee to petition the General Court for liberty to sell the 
parsonage and school lands laying in Turner." This was probably accomplished soon. 


as a candidate for settlement. At this time the church con- 
tained only twenty-one members. In the course of the summer, 
Mr. Greely received the united invitation of the church and 
society, and was ordained October 24, 18 10. 

The next summer after his settlement, a few individuals had 
their attention excited to the things of the eternal world, but 
there was no general awakening. More than six years passed 
away, and gross darkness covered the people. At length, in 
the summer of i8i6, God was pleased to impress seriously on 
the minds of a number. The influences of the Spirit were 
silent, and its effects solemn. The influence continued during 
two seasons, and, in consequence of it, the church was enlarged 
so as to contain more than sixty members. 

Mr. Greely 's history of this church closes here. 
He continued to be the pastor of the church till 
May 29, 1844, a period of thirty-four years. 

Rev. Henry Eddy was pastor from 1844 to 1846. 
Rev. Woodbridge L. James, from 1846 to 1847. 
Rev. John Dodd, from 1847 to 1854. 
Rev. Samuel Bowker, from 1855 to i860. 
Rev. Simeon C. Higgins, from i860 to 1863. 
Rev. Stacy Fowler, from 1864 to 1866. 
Rev. Benjamin F. Manwell, from 1866 to 1867. 
Rev. Ferdinand W. Dickinson, from 1868 to 1870. 
Rev. Alvin B. Jordan, from 187 1 to 1872. 
Rev. Frederick E. Emrich, from 1872 to 1873. 
Rev. Uriah Small, from 1873 to 1875. 
Rev. Edwin S. Tingley, from 1876 to 1882. 
Rev. Richard H. McGown, from 1882 to 1885. 
Rev. Albert N. Jones, from 1886 to 



The early town records show that some of the 
citizens wished to be freed from the obHgation to 
pay their proportional part of the tax raised by the 
town to support public worship. They caused an 
article to be inserted in the warrant for town-meet- 
ing for this purpose. This was repeated year after 
year without effect, and at length they joined in 
the petition which was presented for the incorpora- 
tion of a Baptist Society, since, if they were legally 
members of a properly incorporated society, they 
would be released from the obligation to pay a tax 
for the support of the settled minister of the town; 
and it is probable that their subscriptions to the 
funds of the society petitioned for, were not large. 
A copy of their petition is presented, with the 
names of the petitioners, and the action of the 
General Court thereon. The spelling of two or 
three names is peculiar. Irish is written in the 
petition, '' I Risk,'' and in the act of incorporation 
it is printed, ''Risk''; and '' Doble'' is printed 
^' Dobbr The plantation is written Buckstown, but 
in the act it appears as Bucktown, now called Buck- 
field. The petition is without date, as follows : — 

To The Honorable The Senate and House of Representatives 
of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General Court 
The Petition of a Number of the Inhabitants of Turner 



and the Plantation called Buckstown in the County of Cum- 

Humbly sheweth, That your Petitioners, Inhabitants of said 
Towns have formed themselves into a Religious Society by the 
name of The Baptist Society of Turner and Buckstown, and 
whereas they think it necessary for the Good Order of said 
Society that they sTiould be Incorporated, Therefore Pray the 
Honorable Court to incorporate them, and your petitioners as 
in duty bound shall ever pray. 

Joseph Roberts, Jun. 
John Shurls. 
William I Risk. 
William Berry. 
Samuel Crocker. 
Andrew Ellet. 
John W. Ellet. 
Jonathan Philbrook. 
Joshua Wescott. 
William Doble. 
Jeremiah Hogsdon. 
Jeames Hogsdon. 
Thomas Lowell. 
John Swett. 
David Warren. 
Joseph Roberds. 
John I Risk, Jun. 
Enoch Hall. 
Mark Andrews. 
Henry Jones. 
Benjamin Selley. 
William Lowell. 
Eleazer Chase. 

Simon Records. 
Joshua Keen. 
Josiah Keen. 
Edmund Irish. 
John Buck. 
William Selley. 
Nathaniel Smith. 
Jonathan Roberds. 
Jotham Shaw. 
James Jordan. 
Caleb Young. 
Amos Brown. 
Richard Taler. 
Joseph Chase. 
John I Risk. 
Samuel Blake. 
Samuel Andrews. 
Asa Smith. 
Joshua Davis. 
Thomas Irish. 
Stephen Lowell. 
Jonathan Record. 

Benjamin Jones. 

Jesse Bradford. 


Josiah Smith, Jun. Josiah Smith. 

Laban Smith. Daniel French. 

Daniel Child. Daniel Merrill. 

Hezekiah Bryant. John 'Brown. 

Levi Merrill, Jun. Ezekiel Bradford. 

Richard Phillips. Joseph Leavitt. 

John Dillingham. Nathaniel Gilbert. 

Samuel Gorham. 
In the House of Representatives, June lo, 1791. 
Read and committed to the standing Committee on applica- 
tions for Incorporations of Towns, etc. Sent up for concur- 
rence. David Cobb, Speaker. 

In Senate, June 14, 1791. 
Read and concurred. 

Sam'l Phillips, Fresidt 

Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

In the House of Representatives, June 26, 1792 
On thePetition of Joseph Roberds and others. Inhabitants of 
the town of Turner and Plantation called Buckstown, praying 
to be incorporated into a Society by the name of the Baptist 

Ordered that the petitioners or one of them notify the Inhab- 
itants of the town of Turner and Plantation of Buckstown by 
leaving an attested copy of this petition and order thereon with 
the town clerk of Turner and Plantation clerk of Buckstown to 
appear the second Wednesday of the next sitting of the Gen- 
eral Court and shew cause if any they have why the prayer of 
said petition should not be granted. 

Sent up for concurrence. 

D. Cobb, Spkr. 

In Senate, January, 26, 1792, 
Read and concurred. 

Sam'l Phillips, Presidt. 


Indorsed on the petition is a certificate from 
Ichabod Bonney, town clerk of Turner, dated 
April 2, 1 792, that service has been made on the 


Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

June, 1792. 

The Standing Committee on the subject of incorporations 
having considered the petition of sundry inhabitants of the 
Town of Turner and Plantation of Buckstown, praying to be 
incorporated into a religious Society by the name of the Bap- 
tist Society of Turner and Buckstown, 

Ask leave to report as their opinion^ that the prayer of said 
Petitioners be granted and that the Petitioners have leave to 
bring in a bill for that purpose, which is submitted. 

Stephen Choate, per order. 

In Senate, June 9, 1792. 
Read and accepted and ordered accordingly. 
Sent down for concurrence. 

Sam'l Phillips, Presdnt, 

In the House of Representatives, June 11, 1792. 
Read and concurred. 

David Cobb, Spkr, 

An act for incorporating a number of the Inhabitants of 
Turner and the Plantation called Buckstown, in the County of 
Cumberland, into a distinct religious Society. 

Section i. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Rep- 
resentatives, in General Court assembled, and by the authority 
of the same, 

That Simeon Record, [here follow the names of the petition- 
ers,] members of the said religious Society, together with their 
estates, be, and they hereby are incorporated by the name of 


The Baptist Society of Turner and Bucktown, with all the 
privileges, powers and immunities, to which other parishes in 
the Commonwealth are by law entitled. 

Sect. 2. And be it further enacted, That Josiah Thatcher, 
Esquire, is hereby authorized to issue his warrant, directed to 
some principal member of said Society, requiring him to warn 
the members of the said Society, qualified to vote in parish 
affairs, to assemble at some suitable time and place in said town 
or plantation, to choose such parish officers as are by law 
required to be chosen in the month of March or April annually, 
and to transact all such matters and things as are necessary and 
may be legally done in said Society. 

This act was passed, November 17, 1792. 

From the manuscript history of Turner by Dr. 
Timothy Howe, and from notes prepared by Hon. 
Job Prince for the map of Androscoggin County, 
the following statements respecting the Baptist 
Society in Turner are gathered. 

Soon after the town was incorporated, Elder 
James Potter, an itinerant preacher of this denom- 
ination, who was laboring to establish churches in 
Buckfield and Hebron, visited Turner and baptized 
a few persons. When the society was incorporated 
in 1792, twenty or more of the active citizens of 
the town joined it. But nothing was accomplished 
for several years, and those who had connected 
themselves with the society lost their interest, and 
the parish ceased to manifest any religious life. In 
181 1, Elder Lewis Leonard, of Albany, New York, 
visited the town, preached several times, and baptized 


two persons, and from this time there was a deeper 
interest in the subject of religion. In 1816, there 
was a revival in town which widely prevailed, but a 
large part of those who came under its influence 
connected themselves with the Congregational 
church, yet ten persons were baptized by immer- 
sion, and eight of them joined the Baptist church 
in Minot, there being no church organization of 
that denomination in Turner. Elder Ricker, of 
Minot, was employed to preach one-sixth of the 
time for two years, the people worshiping on the 
other Sabbaths at the Congregational church, for 
the most part. May 12, 18 14, a Baptist church was 
organized, composed of eight men and fifteen 
women, all residents of Turner. Some were mem- 
bers of churches in Hebron, Livermore, Buckfield, 
Minot, Canton, Leeds, and Greene, and brought 
letters of dismission and recommendation from 
the churches of which they had been members. 
The public services of the occasion were held in 
Deacon Nathan Cole's large barn, which was put 
in order for the purpose. Elder Nathan Nutter 
presented to each member the right hand of fel- 
lowship. Elder Ricker spoke of the propriety 
and necessity of appointing officers, and advised 
the church to choose deacons. Nathan Cole and 
Thomas Merrill were then chosen to this office. 
The deacons were set apart by prayer and laying 


on of hands by the elders. Deacon Charles Bar- 
rell gave them the right hand of fellowship. Elder 
Norton addressed them on the importance and 
duties of their office, and the services were con- 
cluded with prayer by Elder Palmer, and singing. 

Their first pastor was Rev. Adam Wilson, d.d., 
who was with them from 1824 to 1828, when he 
removed to Portland. 

In 1829, Elder John Hull, from the province of 
Nova Scotia, was engaged, but he died the same 

Elder Charles Miller, from Sterling in Scotland, 
commenced preaching with them in 1830, and con- 
tinued with them till 1833. 

Elder William O. Grant came in 1833, but re- 
mained only one year. 

Elder Josiah Houghton became their pastor in 
1835, and was with them until his death which 
occurred in 1838. His death was sincerely mourned 
by all. 

Elder Eliab Coy came in 1838, and remained 
one year. 

Elder J. F. Curtis became their pastor in 1839, 
and after preaching with them about nine months, 
left for the State of Georgia. 

In 1 84 1, Rev. Adam Wilson, d.d., was again their 
minister, and continued with them until 1843, when 
he returned to Portland. At this time the commu- 


nicants in the church numbered one hundred and 

Nathaniel Butler, d.d., became the pastor in 1844, 
and resigned in September, 1850. 

July 9, 1 85 1, Rev. C. Ayer commenced his pas- 
torate, and resigned October 27, 1853. 

He was succeeded by Rev. L. D. Hill, February 
26, 1854, who resigned January 9, 1858. 

His successor was Rev. H. B. Marshall, October 
20, 1859. He closed his labors with the church 
December 11, 1861. 

Rev. Abner Morrill became pastor October 4, 
1862; his pastorate ended July 25, 1864. 

He was succeeded by Rev. John Richardson, who 
remained until 1868. 

His successor was Rev. I. Record, who continued 
with the church until September 10, 1876. 

Rev. A. A. Smith became pastor December 3, 
1876, and resigned November 30, 1879. 

Rev. S. A. Severance began his services as pastor 
July 3, 1 88 1, and closed them in May, 1883. 

The present pastor, Rev. C. T. Clarke, began his 
ministry here November 18, 1883. 


A society was formed at an early day, and meas- 
ures were taken to secure an act of incorporation, 
as will appear from the following papers copied from 
the records at the State House in Boston. 


To the Honorable^ the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts^ in General Court assembled. 

The petition of the subscribers, Inhabitants of Turner, in the 
County of Cumberland and Commonwealth aforesaid, humbly 
sheweth : 

That under a sense of the propriety and the expediency of 
the maintenance of public, social worship and of worshiping 
the Supreme Being according to the dictates of their own con- 
sciences ; but being of different religious sentiments from those 
of the other Inhabitants of the town, with whom that unan- 
imity which ought to subsist between the members of one and 
the same religious Society, cannot be expected. Your petition- 
ers, with a full determination always to demean themselves as 
quiet and peaceable citizens of the United States of America, 
and to yield all due subjection to the laws of the Land and the 
government under which they take their residence, and never 
to interrupt, molest or disturb any other religious Society in 
their religious worship, deeming it consentaneous with the con- 
stitution of this Commonwealth, whereby all religious sects are 
tolerated, have this day mutually agreed by subscribing to a 
number of good and wholesome rules and regulations have in 
fact formed themselves into a distinct religious parish by the 
name of The First Universal Gospel Parish in Turner, having 
by the said rules and regulations obliged themselves to main- 
tain the public worship of God in said parish according to the 
dictates of their own consciences. Wherefore they humbly 
pray your Honors to take this their situation under your impar- 
tial, judicious consideration, and in your superior wisdom and 
charity, by an act of said General Court to incorporate them 
and all who may afterwards join them, together with their 
estates, into a distinct parish by the name aforesaid, with all like 
privileges and immunities which have been granted to any 
other religious parish or Society in this Commonwealth, reserv- 
ing liberty for any one, with his estate, to leave said parish and 



join any other who may please, and your petitioners as in duty 
bound will ever pray. Dated at Turner the 24th day of Decem- 
ber, of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and three. 

Jabez Merrill. 
Arthur Bradman. 
Samuel Pumpilly. 
Levi Merrill. 
Seriah Merrill, or Seriab, 
Hezekiah Bryant, Jun. 
Hezekiah Bryant. 
Richard Phillips. 
Jesse Bradford. 
David Hood. 
Reuben Thorp. 
John Soul. 
Aaron Soul. 
Nathaniel Sawtell. 
Benjamin Sawtell. 
Joshua Whitman. 
Elisha Pratt. 
Ezekiel Bradford, Jun. 
Isaac Jones. 
Benjamin Jones, Jun. 
Bennet Pumpilly. 
Jabez Merrill, Jun. 
Abraham Maxim. 
Richard Phillips, Jun. 
Gushing Phillips. 
Robert Bradman. 

Benjamin Chamberlain. 
Cyrus Leavitt. 
Joseph Leavitt, Jun. 
William Bradford. 
Ephraim Turner. 
Asa Bradford. 
Joseph Bonney. 
Abiel O. Turner. 
James Leavitt. 
Chandler Bradford. 
Henry Jones, Jun. 
William Gorham. 
William Bradford, Jun. 
Samuel Kinsley. 
Samuel Kinsley, Jun. 
Jchabod Bonney, Jun. 
Daniel French, Jun. 
George French. 
Elijah Gilbert. 
Josiah Gilbert. 
Elijah Gilbert, Jun. 
Church Pratt. 
Joseph Merrill. 
Jabez T. Merrill. 
Caleb Gilbert. 
Moses Allen. 

Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

In Senate, February 29, 1804. 
On the petition of Benjamin Chamberlin and others, inhabi- 
tants of the town of Turner in the County of Cumberland, 


praying that they may be incorporated into a Religious Society, 
by the name of The First Universal Gospel Parish of Turner, 

Ordered, that the petitioners cause an attested copy of their 
petition, with this order thereon, to be served on the town clerk 
of the said Town of Turner forty days, at least, before the 
second Tuesday of the first session of the next General Court, 
that all persons concerned may then appear and there shew 
cause, if any they have, why the prayer of said petitioners 
should not be granted. 

Sent down for concurrence. 

David Cobb, Presdt. 

In the House of Representatives, March i, 1804. 
Read and concurred. 

H. G. Otis, Speaker. 

Cumberland ss, 2d April, a. d. 1804. 

I served an attested copy of the annexed petition and order 
thereon, on town clerk of the town of Turner. 

Attest: Arthur Bradman, clerk of the proposed First 
Universal Gospel Parish in Turner. 

This certifies that on the second day of April a.d. 1804, I 
was duly served with an attested copy of the annexed petition 
and order thereon. 

Attest: Joseph Bonney, Turner town clerk. 

This may certify that at a legal town meeting held May 14th 
1804, there was a clause in the warrant to see if the town would 
choose some person as an agent to appear on the second Tues- 
day of the first session of the next General Court to make such 
objection to the incorporation of the Universal Society of this 
Town as the town shall think proper to order and direct. 

The following vote was passed, viz : 

Voted unanimously not to send a man as an agent to appear 
on the second Tuesday of the first Session of the next General 


Court to make objection against the incorporation of the Uni- 
versal Society of the town. 

Turner, May 26, 1804. 
A true copy as of record. 
Attest : Joseph Bonney, town clerk. 

In Senate, June 9, 1804. 
Read and committed to the Standing Committee on applica- 
tions for incorporation of parishes, and to hear the parties and 

Sent down for concurrence. 

H. G. Otis, Pres. 

The following petition will show that there was 
objection to the incorporation of the Universalist 
Society, and that there was reason for certain state- 
ments in their petition of their intention to be 
peaceable citizens and not molest any other relig- 
ious society. 

To the Honorable^ the Senate and House of Representatives in 
General Court assembled at Boston. 

May Dom. 1804. 
The undersigned inhabitants of the town of Turner in the 
County of Cumberland, Respectfully represent that the people 
of said town [believing as a large portion of them do, that the 
happiness of a people and the good order and preservation of 
Civil government essentially depend upon Piety, Religion and 
Morality, and that these cannot be generally diffused through a 
community but by the Institution of the Public Worship of 
God and of Capital instruction in Piety, Religion and Morality,] 
did on the month of October last pass a vote to settle among 
them such an Instructor. In this transaction there was not 
that unanimity the undersigned and those who voted with them 
could have wished. 


A number of people in this place have been in the habit of 
viewing Religious Institutions, false objects of expense ; and as 
such, are determined to avoid them. This description of per- 
sons being in the minority and finding opposition in Town una- 
voiding, no plan occurred to them so likely to answer their 
purpose, as an application to the Honorable Legislature for an 
act of incorporation. 

A petition was consequently presented to the last General 
Court praying that Benjamin Chamberlain and others might be 
incorporated into a Universal Society. 

The undersigned will not be thought sensorious by those 
acquainted with the petitioners, when they say, that pecuniary 
motives and not religious principles influenced the conduct of 
the body of them ; indeed many of them expressly avowed it, 
but as their schism embraces every description of persons ; so 
it is not improbable some may have acted from other motives ; 
a small number appear to have acted Conscientiously, and as 
the undersigned have no disposition to abridge the rights of 
Conscience ; so it shall be thought fit and reasonable by your 
Honorable Body to incorporate the petitioners, the undersigned 
will silently submit, but those part of their petitioners that 
pray that provision may be made for any, who may be disposed 
to join them hereafter, and for liberty for any [which may 
amount to all] to abandon their incorporation, at their option, 
are in the opinion of the undersigned so unreasonable, espe- 
cially the latter, and would have such a direct tendency to 
perpetuate discords and divisions, that they beg leave Respect- 
fully to Remonstrate against their request being granted, 
because it is a fact and the petitioners are in possession of it, 
that should they be exempted from contributing to the support 
of their present minister, it would so diminish the number of 
those now liable as to render it in a degree difficult and bur- 
densome for the residue to support him. 


The petitioners therefore confidently expect [if incorporated 
upon the very liberal plan prayed for] that such members will 
shrink from the burden of Ministerial taxation, and shelter 
themselves under their incorporation, as will at no distant 
period constitute them the majority, [and considering the moral 
state of Society there is reason to apprehend such an event] 
the consequence will be that either from the paucity of num- 
bers, or in case they should not abandon their incorporation, or 
by a Major Vote, in case they should, the undersigned would 
be forced to Relinquish an Institution, which they believe 
highly important and interesting to themselves, their Rising 
Families and Society at large. 

They therefore pray your Honorable Body to take their Situ- 
ation in your deliberative consideration, and if it shall be 
thought expedient to incorporate Benjamin Chamberlin and 54 
others into a distinct Society ; the undersigned earnestly intreat 
that the act may be so framed as to promote the peace, har- 
mony and best interests of the undersigned and of those who 
have acted with them, from being disturbed by them in future. 
Dated at Turner, May 28, a.d. 1804. 

Daniel Howard. Benjamin Evans. 

Samuel Blake. John Strickland. 

Thatcher Blake. John Loring. 

David Hale. Willard Mason. 

Levi Mitchell. Daniel Briggs. 

Blake. David Talbot. 

Caleb Bourne. Hart Briggs. 

Zacheriah Chickering. John Briggs. 

Judah Teague. Daniel Gary. 

Samuel Irish. Luther Gary. 

Seth Harris. Ezra Gary. 

Simeon Warren. Ezra Gary, Jun. 

George O. Ghickering. David Talbot, Jun. 


Ebenezer Harlow. Isaac W. Talbot. 

Samuel Brown. William Barrell. 

Benjamin Conant. Abner S. Strickland. 

Michael H. Stevens. Joseph Ludden. 

Joseph Coopling. Alden Blossom. 

Moses Stevens. Martin Leonard. 

Sylvester Jones. Bani Teague. 

In Senate, June 7th 1804. 
Read and committed to the standing committee on applica- 
ions for incorporation of parishes, etc. to hear the parties and 

Sent down for concurrence, 

D. Cobb, Pres't. 
In the House of Representatives, June 7, 1804. 
Read and concurred. 

H. G. Otis, Speaker. 

The Committee of both houses appointed to consider appli- 
cations for Incorporation of Parishes and Religious Societies, 
on the Petition of Benjamin Chamberlain and other Inhabitants 
of the Town of Turner in the County of Cumberland, pray- 
ing that they may be incorporated into a Religious Society by 
the name of the First Universalist Gospel Parish in Turner, 
Report, that the prayer of the petitioners be so far granted that 
they have leave to bring in a bill for that purpose, which is 

Isaac Coffin. 
In Senate, June 15, 1804. 
Read and accepted. Sent down for concurrence. 

D. Cobb, Pres. 
In the House of Representatives, June 15, 1804. 
Read and concurred. 

H. G. Otis, Speaker. 


Cumberland ss. 
To the Honorable House of Representatives of the Commonwealth 

of Massachusetts^ in General Court assembled. 
The Petition of the subscribers, inhabitants of Turner in the 
County of Cumberland and Commonwealth aforesaid, humbly 
shevveth, that in as much as a respectable number of the inhab- 
itants of this Town are professed Universalists, some of which 
have formed themselves into a distinct parish and presented a 
petition to the General Court of this Commonwealth for an 
Incorporation, the prayer of which has been already granted by 
the Honorable Senate at a former session, and whereas a vote 
of the other Inhabitants of this Town at a legal Town meeting 
has been heretofore passed against opposing the same, notwith- 
standing some individuals have remonstrated against it, your 
Petitioners, who are not members of said parish of Universa- 
lists, take leave to inform your honors that the adverse party, 
as a body, are far from wishing to interpose in the affair, it 
being the general opinion, as well as that of your present 
petitioners, that the granting of their the said Universalists' 
Petition will make for peace and good fellowship in this town 
[the adverse party, or other Society in Turner, as a body, are 
under no apprehension of the least degree of danger of any 
molestation from them, they having unanimously agreed not to 
oppose them, in regard to ministerial and religious matters] 
wherefore and for diverse other good reasons which are need- 
less to mention, your Petitioners humbly pray your Honors to 
concur, with the Honorable Senate in granting the prayer of 
their the said Universalists' Petition, and your present Peti- 
tioners as in duty bound will ever pray. 

Dated at Turner the 5th day of November a.d. 1804. 

John Turner. George Bradman. 

Ichabod Bonney. Charles Lee Turner. 

Enos Turner. Nath'l Robinson. 


Samuel Gorham. Stephen Turner. 

Isaiah Leavitt. John Allen, Jun. 

Stephen Bryant. Josiah Staples. 

Dan Pratt. Levi Merrill, Jun. 

James Torrey, Jun. Benjamin Jones. 

William Turner. Seth Staples. 

Job C. Randel. Samuel Speare. 

Southard Washburn. Jonathan Philips. 

Abner Thayer. Nath. Staples. 

Henry Jones. Cornelius Staples. 

An act to incorporate a number of the Inhabitants of the 
Town of Turner, in the County of Cumberland, into a Religious 
Society, by the name of The Universalists' Society in Turner. 

Sect. i. Be it enacted by the Senate and house of Repre- 
sentatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of 
the same, That Benjamin Chamberlain, (here follow the names 
of all the petitioners, which are omitted,) with their families 
and estates, be, and they are hereby incorporated into a relig- 
ious Society by the name of the Universalists' Society in 
Turner, with all the powers, privileges and immunities to which 
other parishes are entitled by the Constitution and laws of this 
Commonwealth, for religious purposes only. 

Sect. 2. Be it further enacted, That any person belonging to 
the said town of Turner, who may at any time within one year 
from the passing of this Act, actually become a member of, and 
unite in religious worship with the Society aforesaid, and give 
in his or her name to the Town Clerk of said Turner, with a 
certificate signed by the Minister or clerk of said Society, that 
he or she has actually become a member of, and united in relig- 
ious worship with the Universalists' Society aforesaid, fourteen 
days at least previous to the town-meeting to be holden in said 
Turner, in the months of March or April annually, shall, from 
and after giving such certificate, with his or her polls and 


Estates, be considered as part of said Society, Provided how- 
ever, That such person or persons shall be holden to pay their 
proportion of all money assessed in said town of Turner pre- 
vious to that time. 

Sect. 3. Be it further enacted, That if any member of said 
Universalists' Society, shall at any time within one year from 
the passing of this Act, see cause to leave the same, and unite 
in religious worship with any other religious Society in said 
town, and shall lodge a certificate of such his or her intention 
with the Minister or Clerk of said Universalists' Society, and 
also with the Clerk of the town of Turner, fourteen days at 
least before the town-meeting in the months of March or April 
annually, and shall pay his or her proportion of all money 
assessed in said Society previous thereto, such person shall, 
from and after giving such certificate, with his or her polls and 
estates, be considered as belonging to the town or parish in 
which he or she may reside, in the same manner as if he or she 
had never belonged to the said Universalists' Society. 

Sect. 4. And be it further enacted. That any Justice of the 
Peace in the County of Cumberland be, and hereby is author- 
ized to issue a warrant, directed to some suitable member of 
said Universalists' Society, requiring him to notify and warn the 
members thereof to meet at such time and place in said town 
as shall be directed in said warrant, to choose such officers 
as parishes in this Commonwealth are by law authorized to 
choose in the months of March or April annually. 

(This Act passed February 16, 1805.) 

This act of Incorporation was not satisfactory to 
the society, and some of its members advised its 
rejection because it limited the time for receiving 
members to one year, and contained no provision 
for the reception of members after the expiration 


of that time. But, on the whole, it was thought 
best to accept it, yet it became, not long after, a 
dead letter. By an act of the Maine Legislature, 
this original act of incorporation was rescinded, and 
the society made a territorial parish about 1830. 

Rev. Thomas Barnes, a native of Vermont but 
a resident of Poland, Maine, was probably the first 
preacher employed by this society. From 1800 to 
the time of his death, which occurred in 18 16, he 
frequently preached in town. Rev. Isaac Root 
seems also to have been employed during these 
years; he resided in town with his family five or 
six years. In 1806, Rev. Sebastian Streeter, then a 
young man, and a native of New Hampshire, 
preached for a season and awakened a deep inter- 
est, and is said to have made many converts to his 
views. For several years previous to 1824, there 
was preaching irregularly by Revs. William Frost, 
Thomas Barnes, Jabez Woodman, William Fare- 
well, a Mr. Smith, a Mr. Sargent, Benjamin Thorn, 
and others. 

About 1824, Rev. Sylvanus Cobb commenced 
preaching with them, and continued his ministry 
two or three years. Rev. William A. Drew sup- 
plied for them a portion of the time. 

On the second Sabbath in February, 1827, Rev. 
George Bates commenced his ministry, preaching 
regularly every other Sabbath until January, 1830, 


when he was settled as the minister of the First 
Parish in Turner. He was installed in the pastoral 
office on the i8th of that month. Rev. William A. 
Drew, of Augusta, preached the installation ser- 
mon. He continued to perform the duties of his 
office until 1852, a period of about twenty-five 
years. A church was organized October 12, 1849, 
consisting of twenty-nine members. In March, 
1853, Rev. W. R. French was engaged as pastor, 
and continued his services for seventeen years. 

In 1870, Rev. H. C. Munson became their pastor, 
and remained with them about seven years. 

In the spring of 1878, Rev. G. M. D. Barnes was 
engaged, and continued his ministry two years. 

In August, 1879, Rev. W. R. French became 
their pastor again, and continued his services four 
years, making twenty-one years in the whole. 

In the autumn of 1883, the services of Rev. John 
Kimbal were secured, and he continued in the pas- 
toral office till July i, 1886, when he resigned. 


Several years ago, Methodist meetings were sus- 
tained for a time in North Turner, but no organi- 
zation was effected, and there was no church 
building in which to hold the services. Rev. E. 
Martin, then a young man, was the minister, and 
was not, probably, in full connection with the 


church; and when he was appointed to a station 
or circuit, the meetings at North Turner ceased, 
and no visible results were manifest. But on Feb- 
ruary 8, 1879, a Methodist Episcopal Church was 
organized at Turner Village by Rev. S. T. Record, 
who in middle life had then just entered the minis- 
try, and in May following was appointed to that 
charge, and held it for three years. During his 
term of service, he succeeded in erecting a chapel 
with a vestry, the latter being finished and occupied 
for the Sabbath services. The audience room was 
finished as funds were secured, thus an example 
was set of building slowly, and not rushing into 
debt, that the parish might not be oppressed, and 
perhaps crushed by a heavy burden. 

Rev. N. C. Clifford was appointed to the charge in 
May, 1882; and Rev. J. Moulton, in 1883, and was 
the pastor as long as the rules of that church would 

Rev. John P. Roberts was appointed the pastor, 
April 29, 1886. At this date the membership of 
the church is twenty-two. 


The first meeting-house was built on the upper 
street, on the ledge a little north of G. W. Blos- 
som's, for the accommodation of the whole town. It 
was erected in 1783, under a contract between the 


proprietors and several of the settlers, who were to 
receive eighty-seven pounds toward the expenses of 
building it. It was to be thirty-five feet square, 
with twenty feet posts, the walls covered with 
boards and clapboards, and the roof with boards 
and shingles. There were to be twenty-four win- 
dow-frames set, and six windows glazed, and the 
lower floor was to be laid. 

In 181 9, the Congregational ists built a large 
church on the cross road, half a mile to the west 
of the former, and occupied it till the winter of 
1836, when it was destroyed by fire. Afterward, 
they built a chapel on the spot occupied by the 
first house, but after a few years they sold it, and 
built a tasteful church at the village, in which they 
have continued to worship to the present time. 

The Baptists built a church at the village, in 
1826, which they occupied for many years, but at 
length erected a church of fine proportions, with 
vestry accommodations, and pleasing in style. It 
is probably the most expensive church in the town. 

In 1825, the Universalists erected a large church 
on the lower street, designed to accommodate the 
people in all the country round. It was two stories 
high, with capacious galleries. This house was 
taken down in 1848, and the materials used in the 
construction of a new one at the center, a location 
which much better accommodates the parish. Its 


interior now presents an attractive appearance, and 
it is a comfortable place of worship. 

The Universalists about the north part of the 
town built a chapel at Richmond's Corner in 1841, 
before the site of the first church was changed, but 
public worship has not been sustained in it except 
in the mild portion of the year. It stands in the 
midst of thrifty farmers, to whom it sends out its 
silent invitations. 

In the autumn of 1877, the people of North 
Turner dedicated a small church of graceful pro- 
portion, tasteful finish, and attractive in every 
feature. It is a little gem. The peculiarity in its 
erection is that the ladies of the place took it in 
hand, raised money by levees and by subscriptions, 
made the contracts, and pushed the work along to 
completion; and it was dedicated free from debt. 
It is called a union church; the several ministers 
in town united in the service of dedication, and 
its doors are opened for religious services without 
regard to the faith of the minister officiating. No 
pastor has been settled there. 


The original proprietors of Sylvester Canada 
were required by the act of the General Court 
which secured to them the township, to set apart 
one sixty-fourth part thereof, for the support of a 


learned Protestant minister, one sixty-fourth part 
for the support of schools in the town, and one 
sixty-fourth part for the benefit of Harvard College. 
For a number of years, the settled minister culti- 
vated the land set apart for his support, or as much 
of it as he chose, and in this way received a portion 
of his salary; but there was no way to get any rev- 
enue from the school lands but to rent them. 
Only very small funds were raised in this way for 
the support of schools in the town. It soon became 
apparent that all these lands would better promote 
the interests for which they were set apart, if they 
were sold, and from the proceeds a permanent fund 
created, the interest of which should be expended 
annually for the support of public worship and 
schools. Hence, in 1802, the town voted to peti- 
tion the General Court for liberty to sell the 
parsonage and school lands. Their petition was 
favorably received, and the following act was 

Commonwealth of Massachusetts. 

In the year of our LORD, one thousand eight hundred and 

An Act to authorize the raising a fund for the support of the 
ministry, and a Grammar School in the town of Turner in the 
County of Cumberland. 

Sec. I St. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Repre- 
sentatives in General Court assembled and by the authority of 
the same, that Ichabod Bonney esqr, William Bradford, Benja- 


min Evans, John Turner esq, Daniel Gary, Luther Gary and 
John Loring be, and hereby are appointed trustees to sell the 
ministerial and school land in said Town of Turner, and put 
out at interest the monies arising from such sale, in manner 
hereafter mentioned, and for that purpose. 

Sec. 2d. Be it further enacted, that the said Trustees be and 
hereby are incorporated into a body politic by the name of the 
Trustees of the Ministerial and Grammar School funds in the 
town of Turner in the Gounty of Gumberland ; and they and 
their successors shall be and continue a body politic and cor- 
porate by that name forever, and they shall have a common 
Seal subject to be altered at their pleasure ; and they may sue 
and be sued in all actions real, personal, and mixed, and pros- 
ecute and defend the same to final judgment and execution, by 
the name aforesaid. 

Sec. 3d. Be it further enacted, that the said trustees and 
their successors, shall and may annually elect a President and 
Glerk to record the doings and transactions of the trustees at 
their meetings ; and a Treasurer to receive and apply the monies 
hereinafter mentioned, as hereinafter directed, and any other 
needful officers for the better managing of their business. 

Sec. 4th. Be it further enacted, that the number of trustees 
shall not, at any time, be more than seven, nor less than five, 
and five of their number to constitute a quorum for transacting 
business; and they shall and may from time to time fill up 
vacancies in their number, which may happen by death, resig- 
nation or otherwise, from the members of said town ; and shall 
also have power to remove any of their number who may 
become unfit and incapable from age, infirmity, misconduct or 
any other cause of discharging their duty, and to supply a 
vacancy so made by a new choice from the town aforesaid. 
And the said trustees shall annually hold a meeting in March 
or April, and as much oftener as may be found necessary to 


transact their business, which meetings, after the first, shall be 
called in such way and manner as the trustees shall hereafter 

Sec. 5th. Be it further enacted, that Ichabod Bonney esqr. 
be and hereby is authorized to fix the time and place for holding 
the first meeting of the trustees and to notify each trustee 

Sec. 6th. Be it further enacted, that said trustees be, and they 
hereby are authorized to sell and convey in fee simple, all the 
ministerial and grammar school lands belonging to said town 
and to make, execute and acknowledge a good and sufficient 
deed or deeds thereof, which deed or deeds subscribed by the 
name of their Treasurer, by direction of said trustees with their 
Seal thereto affixed, shall be good and effectual in law to pass, 
and convey the fee simple from said town to the purchaser, to 
all intents and purposes whatever. 

Sec. 7th. Be it further enacted, that the monies arising from 
the sale of said lands shall be put at interest as soon as may 
be, and secured by mortgage of real estate to the full value of 
the estate sold ; or by two or more sufficient sureties with the 
principal, unless the trustees shall think it best to invest the 
same in public funded securities, or bank stock of this Com- 
monwealth, which they may do. 

Sec. 8th. Be it further enacted, that the interest arising from 
time to time on such monies, shall be annually, or oftener if 
practicable, put out at interest and secured in manner aforesaid, 
unless invested in the funds or bank stock as aforesaid, and 
also the interest accruing from the interest, until a fund shall 
be accumulated on the sale of school lands and the interest 
arising thereon, which shall yield yearly the sum of two hundred 
dollars, and from the ministerial lands, three hundred and fifty 
dollars annually. 

Sec. 9th. Be it further enacted, that as soon as an interest 


to that amount shall accrue, the trustees shall forthwith apply 
the same, or that part arising from the sale of the ministerial 
lands, toward the support of a learned protestant minister which 
may then be settled in town, or which may thereafter be settled 
there j and as long as the said town shall remain without a set- 
tled minister, the annual interest aforesaid shall be put at 
interest and secured as aforesaid to increase the said fund, 
until there be a resettlement of a minister ; and that part arising 
from the sale of the school lands as aforesaid towards the sup- 
port of a grammar School in said town ; and it shall never be 
in the power of said town to alienate or anywise alter the funds 

Sec. loth. Be it further enacted, that the Clerk of said 
Corporation shall be sworn previous to his entering on the 
duties of his office; and the Treasurer of the Trustees shall 
give bond faithfully to perform his duty, and to be at all times 
responsible for the faithful application and appropriation of the 
money which may come into his hands, conformably to the true 
intent and meaning of this act, and for all negligence or mis- 
conduct of any kind in his office. 

Sec. nth. Be it further enacted, that the Trustees or their 
officers for the services they may perform shall be entitled to 
no compensation out of any money arising from the funds 
aforesaid, but if entitled to any shall have and receive the same 
of said town as may be mutually agreed on. 

Sec. 1 2th. Be it further enacted, that the said Trustees and 
their successors shall exhibit to the town at their annual meet- 
ing in March or April, a regular and fair statement of their 

Sec. 13th. Be it further enacted, that the said Trustees and 
each of them shall be responsible to the town for their personal 
negligence or misconduct whether they be officers or not, and 
liable to a suit for any loss or damage arising thereby, the debt 
or damage recovered in such suit, to be for the uses aforesaid. 


In the House of Representatives February 7th 1803. 
This bill having had three several readings passed to be 

John C. Jones, Speaker, 

In Senate, February 8th 1803. 
This bill having had two several readings passed to be 

David Cobb, President. 
February 9th 1803. By the Governor approved. 

Caleb Strong. 
True copy, 
Attest: John Avery, Secretary, 

At a meeting of the trustees, convened at the 
house of Ichabod Bonney, Esq., March 15, 1803, 
Benjamin Evans was chosen Clerk* Luther Gary, 
Esq., President, and John Turner, Esq., Treasurer. 
At a meeting held the following month, a commit- 
tee was chosen consisting of Ichabod Bonney, 
William Bradford, and John Turner, to appraise 
the ministerial and grammar school lands with ref- 
erence to their sale. The treasurer was instructed 
to procure a seal with the letter T. It is presumed 
that this letter was designed to represent Turner ; 
but, at a subsequent meeting, it was voted to adopt 
the letter J instead, but nothing appears to indicate 
the reason for the change. 

The following is a statement of the sale of the 
ministerial and school lands in the town of Turner, 
and county of Cumberland. 



Lot No. 224, sold to Stephen Drew Jun. and Chand- 
ler Decosterj notes given dated June nth, 
1803, for one thousand dollars. $1,000.00 

Thatcher Blake and Stephen Drew were bondsmen 
for Chandler Decoster, and Zeri Hayford and 
Chandler Decoster were bondsmen for Chand- 
ler Decoster Jr. 

Lot No. 126 was sold June 15th, 1803, to Asa Brad- 
ford, for cash, 50.00 

Lot No. 203 was sold June 15th, 1803, to Seraiah 

Merrill; note for 250.00 

Of Lot No. 51, the northwest quarter was sold to 

Luther Cary, January 2, 1804, for 450.00 

Samuel Gorham and Joseph Leavitt were his 

Of Lot No. 51, the southwest quarter was sold to 

Samuel Gorham for S50'00 

Luther Cary and Joseph Leavitt were his bondsmen. 

Of Lot No. 51, the northeast quarter was sold to 

Joseph Leavitt for 750.00 

Luther Cary and Samuel Gorham were his bondsmen. 

Of Lot No. 51, the southeast quarter was sold to 

Samuel Pumpilly for 800.00 

Total, $3,850.00 


Lot No. 99 was sold to David Hale and Oliver Hale 

for $1,100.00 

The note given was dated May 20, 1803, and Oliver 
Hale and the selectmen of Waterford were 

Lot No. 257 was sold to Joshua Whitman for 350*00 


The note given was dated June 11, 1803, and Sam- 
uel Gorham and John Strickland Jun. were 

Lot No. 168 was sold to John Swett for 700.00 

The note given was dated June 15, 1803. Judah 
Teague and Samuel Irish were bondsmen. 

Lot No. 4 was sold to Ezra Gary Jun. and Seth 

Staples for 400.00 

The note given was dated September 10, 1803. 
Ezra Gary and Abner Thayer were bondsmen. 

Total, $2,550.00 

As the ministerial and grammar school funds 
were not productive until the annual interest of the 
former amounted to three hundred and fifty dol- 
lars, and the latter to two hundred dollars, the 
trustees had but little business, except to keep up 
their organization and look out for the notes given 
for lands sold. A committee was chosen annually 
to advise with the treasurer respecting the notes in 
his keeping. When there was money in the treas- 
ury arising from the payment of notes due, any man 
in town could hire it, or as much as he might need, 
by procuring the names of two men as indorsers who 
were acceptable. There was rarely a time when no 
one was ready "to borrow money of the town," as 
it was called, when there were funds in the treasury; 
and in this way, the people of the town were accom- 
modated, and the money kept at interest. This 
was a great convenience to those in need of money. 


since the rate per cent was not high, and the prin- 
cipal could be retained for years, or until the 
borrower could pay it, without inconvenience to 

It was desirable that the annual interest on the 
money loaned to individuals should all be paid at a 
certain date, so that the treasurer of the trustees 
might be furnished with funds to meet the demands 
on the treasury at regular times. Hence, in April, 
1808, a vote was passed instructing the treasurer to 
have all notes for money loaned so adjusted that 
the annual interest on school funds should be paid 
on the third Monday in March, and the interest 
on the ministerial fund, on the second Monday in 
March. To make the payment of money loaned 
sure, and still not compel one to be a bondsman 
longer than he might choose, it was 

Voted, that when a bondsman shall express his desire to the 
treasurer to be free from such engagement, it shall be the duty 
of the treasurer at the expiration of one year from the time 
such person became bound, to notify the principal to procure 
other sufficient bondsmen, and in the event of such principal 
refusing or neglecting to procure such bondsmen within a 
reasonable time, the treasurer is directed to enforce the pay- 
ment of the sum due. 

At an adjourned meeting held in April, 1808, it was voted 
that thanks be presented to the treasurer for the faithful 
discharge of his duty, it appearing upon a settlement with him, 
that the funds have accumulated agreeable to the intention of 
the Legislature ; that no loss accrued, there being in his hands 


on the first Monday of March last, securities to the ministerial 
fund amounting to . . . . . . . $4,978.99, 

and to the school fund 3>376.72. 

When the school fund became productive the 
trustees were in doubt as to the proper and legal 
manner of expending the annual income. It was 
by the act creating the fund devoted to the support 
of a grammar school. A public school of that 
grade could not be supported in town by the funds 
at command, and it did not seem right to- divert 
the money to the support of the common schools; 
but the town desired that the money should be thus 
diverted. To relieve the trustees from their em- 
barrassment the town voted to secure them against 
any loss or harm they might incur by putting the 
interest of the school fund to this use. And for 
some years the interest was so applied. At length, 
another plan was adopted which secured the same 
result. The fund money was assigned to two or 
three of the largest of the public schools in town, 
which for this reason were required to employ a 
teacher qualified to give instruction in the higher 
branches of education, students in college being 
usually selected, while the other schools, supported 
wholly by the town's money, might be taught by 
those possessing more slender qualifications. This 
plan was open to objection in that the college stu- 
dents required higher wages, and the schools in 


their charge were sometimes no better than those 
in charge of common teachers. Hence, the schools 
which seemed to be favored were compelled to pay 
for advantages which they did not receive. Some 
other arrangement must be made, and the trustees, 
in 1828, voted "that the proceeds of the school fund 
be expended in a grammar school for one year," 
and Alden Blossom was chosen "a committee 
to carry the above into effect." It is presumed 
that a school was opened in the fall of that year, 
since at a meeting held December i, 1828, a com- 
mittee was chosen "to settle with Mr. Lewis Bailey 
for keeping school." In July, 1830, Isaac W. Tal- 
bot was chosen " agent to procure a schoolmaster 
to keep the grammar school one quarter." Mr. 
Joseph T. Huston was employed, who taught 
twelve weeks in the autumn following. From that 
time onward, twelve weeks of school have been 
provided each autumn in which the higher branches 
of learning have been taught, and in which those 
who desired might be fitted for college. These 
schools were held in the different districts in turn, 
that all parts of the town might share equally in their 
advantages. But after a time, it was thought best 
to have two schools in the autumn season of six 
weeks each, instead of one school of twelve weeks; 
and this plan has been adhered to until the present 
time. As these schools are supported by the gram- 


mar school fund, they have always been called 
grammar schools, though they are designed to be, 
in fact, high schools. They are sustained without 
expense to the town, and the school committee do 
not have them in charge. These schools have 
been a great benefit to the town, having afforded 
educational facilities to many who otherwise would 
have been deprived of them. 

Rev. Allen Greely was settled as pastor of the 
Congregational church and society in 1810, and 
also of the first parish, which included the town ; 
the town, as such, in public meeting voting to set- 
tle him as their pastor. Being the pastor of the 
parish embracing the town, he received annually 
the interest of the ministerial fund, and no other 
minister settled in town was entitled to a dollar of 
it while he was the pastor of the first parish. 
The fund became productive in 181 1, and in that 
year the trustees voted to pay Rev. Allen Greely 
seventy dollars. The annual income of the fund 
was regularly paid him for several years, though 
other religious societies soon began to think they 
ought to share in the benefits of the ministerial 
fund. A Baptist society was formed at an early 
date, and not long after a Universalist society. 
The latter society asked for its share of the annual 
income of the ministerial fund, but the trustees did 
not favor this request. There was no way to gain 


their request, but to dismiss Mr. Greely as the 
pastor of the first parish, which included the town, 
and settle another in his stead, for the settled min- 
ister of this parish would be entitled to the income 
of the ministerial fund. Accordingly, a meeting of 
the parish was called about 1830, to vote upon the 
question of dismissing Mr. Greely and settling 
another man in his place. This meeting awakened 
considerable interest, and some feeling. I think 
Francis Gary, Esq., was chosen presiding officer, 
whose sympathies were with the first parish, then 
holding the reins of power. Every voter in town 
was a voter at this meeting unless he had forfeited 
his right by becoming a legal member of some 
other religious society. At this meeting many 
votes against Mr. Greely were rejected because 
they were thought to be illegal, those who offered 
them being supposed to be legal members of some 
other religious society. A sufficient number of 
votes were rejected to make the majority, as de- 
clared, in favor of Rev. Mr. Greely, but the actual 
majority was against him. This majority took 
action accordingly, declaring that Mr. Greely was 
dismissed, and that Rev. George Bates was chosen 
pastor of the first parish. George French, Esq., 
was chairman of the committee chosen to notify 
Mr. Greely of his dismission. Matters were now 
in a very confused state. There were two par- 


ties claiming to be the first parish, and two 
ministers, each claiming to be the legally settled 
pastor thereof. There was no way out of this but by 
a process of law. Several of those whose votes 
were rejected sued the presiding officer of the meet- 
ing for denying them their legal rights, and long, 
tedious, and vexatious lawsuits resulted. It required 
nearly ten years to grind this grist in the mill of 
the law, and it may be safely said that it put 
patience and other Christian virtues to a severe 
test; but the actual majority was finally sustained, 
and the action they took was ascertained to be 

Meanwhile, neither pastor could get the annual 
income of the ministerial fund, for the trustees 
would not, of course, pay it out to Mr. Bates, who was 
not admitted to be chosen pastor by a majority at 
the parish meeting named above ; and they dared 
not pay it out to Mr. Greely, for if he were legally 
dismissed, they would be personally holden and 
under obligation to pay Mr. Bates a sum equal to 
the income of the fund. Mr. Bates, claiming to be 
the legal pastor, was, under the circumstances, 
obliged to sue the trustees for the money due him ; 
hence they were involved in a lawsuit, and in Octo- 
ber, 1831, voted "that Isaac W. Talbot be an agent 
for the trustees of the ministerial and grammar 
school fund in Turner, to appear at Paris, at the 


Supreme Judicial Court, October term 1831, to an- 
swer to the suit of the Rev. George Bates against 
said trustees." It will readily be seen that this 
case could not be decided until it had first been 
determined whether the votes rejected were legally 
thrown out or not. It must require a long time 
to grind this grist. At length, Mr. Greely at- 
tempted a compromise, which was successful, as 
follows : — 

Articles of agreement made and concluded by and between 
Allen Greely of Turner in the County of Oxford and State of 
Maine on the one part, and George Bates of said Turner on the 
other part, executed this — day of April, Anno Domini, 1834. 

The parties to this agreement being mutually anxious to 
close the unhappy dissensions which have heretofore existed 
in relation to the ministerial funds in the town of Turner in a 
satisfactory and equitable manner, have mutually agreed, That 
on condition that the first Parish will relinquish all claims upon 
the Trustees of the ministerial and school funds in the town 
of Turner for any interest which may have arisen from the 
ministerial funds prior to the second day of January 1830, and 
provided also that the Trustees of said funds shall assent to 
this agreement, then the following Articles of Agreement shall 
become firmly binding and obligatory between the said parties, 

Article 1st. It is mutually agreed by and between the said 
parties to this agreement, that all the interest which has arisen 
from the ministerial fund in the town of Turner since the second 
day of January, a.d. 1830, when the said George Bates assumed 
the duties of said Parish, shall be divided in equal shares by 
and between the said Allen Greely and the said George Bates ; 


and each of the said parties shall make and execute all such 
receipts, releases and discharges as may be necessary to secure 
the trustees of said ministerial fund, and to carry the conditions 
of this article into full effect. 

Article 2d. It is further mutually agreed by and between 
the said parties to this agreement; that the action brought by 
the said George Bates against the trustees of the ministerial 
and school funds in Turner, and which is now pending in the 
Supreme Judicial Court for the County of Oxford, shall be 
withdrawn and discharged, each party paying his own costs. 

Allen Greely, 
George Bates. 

This mutual agreement disposed of the difficulty 
for the present, arising out of the ministerial fund, 
and in the interests of peace an agreement was 
made between the Congregational and Universalist 
societies that the income of the ministerial fund 
should be divided annually between the different 
religious societies in town for five years. But when 
the five years had expired the old difficulties had to 
be adjusted again. There was an unwillingness on 
one of the parties to continue or renew the agree- 
ment, and for a time nothing was accomplished in 
the way of harmonizing the discordant elements. 
At length Hon. Job Prince, Dr. Philip Bradford, 
and others petitioned the Legislature for authority 
to divide the annual income of the ministerial fund 
between the religious societies in town. This ef- 
fort was successful, resulting in the act following. 


An act to divide the Ministerial Fund in Turner. 

Sec. I. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Repre- 
sentatives in Legislature assembled : That the Trustees of the 
Ministerial Fund in the town of Turner be, and they hereby are 
directed and empowered to divide annually the interest arising 
on said Ministerial Fund among the several Protestant settled 
Ministers in said Turner in proportion to the ratable polls 
adhering to or belonging to the Societies or parishes of said 
Ministers respectively; Provided the Minister and a majority of 
the first Parish agree thereto. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that the legal voters in said 
town are hereby empowered and authorized to proceed in such 
manner as they may deem proper to enumerate the adherents 
to the said several Societies in said town, and to ascertain the 
number belonging to each, that an equitable division may be 

This copy of the act is preserved in the old rec- 
ords of the trustees, but it is without date. The 
Universalists and their friends, claiming to be a 
majority of the first parish over which their minis- 
ter was the settled pastor, were now in a condition 
to carry this act into effect, and willingly conceded 
to others the rights which they had secured to 
themselves ; and from that time the interest arising 
from the fund has been divided annually, in accord- 
ance with the act of the Legislature. From the 
time this act went into effect the first parish vir- 
tually ceased to exist, for the town, as such, has not 
since then performed any parish duties, or been 
regarded as a parish in any proper sense. 


The manner of ascertaining the number of adhe- 
rents to each religious society has for a long time 
been as follows: When the selectmen take the val- 
uation of the town in the month of April annually, 
they ask each voter which society he wishes to 
have his proportion of the fund money, and a mark 
is placed against his name accordingly. The trus- 
tees, at their annual meeting in March, divide the 
interest arising from the fund among the Protestant 
societies in town having settled pastors, in propor- 
tion to the number of names in favor of each. 
This method has given satisfaction, the dissensions 
of the former years are forgotten, and all are in 

The following is a list of the trustees of the 
ministerial and grammar school funds in Turner, 
with their times of service so far as the records 
give information. 


Ichabod Bonney, from 1803 to . 

William Bradford, from 1803 to 18 12. 
Benjamin Evans, from 1803 to 18 15. 
John Turner, from 1803 to 1832. 

Daniel Gary, from 1803 to . 

Luther Gary, from 1803 to 1835. 

John Loring from 1803 to 1807, when he moved out of town. 

Joshua Barrell, from 1807 to i8ii. 

Beniah Niles, from 1807 to 181 1. 

Alden Blossom, from 181 1 to 1856. 


Isaac W. Talbot, from 18 12 to 1849. 
Asa Bradford, from 1812 to 1813. 
Martin Bradford, from 18 13 to 1832. 
Jonathan Phillips, from 1815 to 1827. 
Francis Gary, from 1820 to 1838. 
Azor Barrell, from 1827 to 1867. 
Richmond Bradford, from 1832 to 1836. 
J. Bass Barrell, from 1832 to 1838. 
Luther Whitman, from 1835 to 1847. 
Job Prince, from 1836 to 1863. 
Asa Phillips, from 1838 to 1853. 

Philip Bradford, from 1838 to . 

Ajalon Dillingham, from 1850 to 187 1. 

Ezekiel Martin, from 1854 to . 

Justus Conant, from 1856 to 1881. 
Philo Clark, from 1863 to 1884. 
George W. Turner, from 1864 to 1877. 
Mellen French, from 1864 to 1885. 
Hira Bradford, from 1867 ^^ 1885. 
Justus C. Bailey, from 187 1. 
Jairus Gary, from 1877. 
Rufus Prince, from 1878. 
Horace G. Haskell, from 1881. 
Leonard M. Beals, from 1884. 
Rackley D. Leavitt, from 1885. 
William H. French, from 1885. 


Benjamin Evans, from 1803 to 18 12. 
Alden Blossom, from 1812 to 1855. 
Luther Whitman, from 1856 to 1864. 
George W. Turner, from 1865 to 1877. 
Justus C. Bailey, from 1878. 



John Turner, from 1803 to 18 15. 
Isaac W. Talbot, from 1815 to 1830. 
Azor Barrel!, from 1830 to 1835. 
J. Bass Barren, from 1835 to 1837. 
Job Prince, from 1837 ^^ 1863. 
Philo Clark, from 1864 to 1884. 
Rufus Prince, from 1884. 

Marriages solemnized by Rev. John Strickland, 
the first settled minister in town. 

Benjamin Pettingill and Mary Briggs. 
Edmond Bowe and Patience Barrows. 
Thomas Atherton and Bethiah Richmond. 
Rufus Briggs and Elizabeth Eliot. 
William Hayford and Phillena French. 
Benjamin Alden and Betty Hayford. 
Joshua Ford and Cele Bisbe. 
Elijah Fisher and Jerusha Keen. 
Jairus Phillips and Silence Briggs. 

James Sampson and Jemima Stetson. 
Dominions Record and Jane Warren. 
William True and Rebeccah Bradford. 
Jabez Churchill and Merriah Benson. 
Jeremiah Hodgden and Thankful Keen. 
Elijah Briggs and Rachel Pettingill. 
Jacob Stephens and Martha Pettingill. 
Benjamin Heald and Rebeccah Spalden. 
Robert Glover and Keziah Barrows. 
Cushing Clerk and Lucy Carver. 
Ezekiel Bradford and Mary House . 











































Edward Fifield and Mary Bagly. 
Peter Joslyn and Kitty Bank. 
Jeremiah Dillingham and Sarah Leavitt. 
Chandler Freeman and Betty Millett. 
Samuel Crafts and Nancy Packard. 
Phineas Jones and Ruth Ames. 
Samuel Perkins and Mehitable Shurtlief. 
James Bowker and Judith Chace. 
Moses Woodbury and Hannah Davis. 


Jacob Leavitt and Rhoda Thayer. 
Asa Robertson and Deborah Briggs. 
Simon Berlin and Elizabeth Robertson. 
Robert Youling and Anna Carrall. 
Daniel Briggs, Jun. and Betty Bradford. 
Daniel French and Sarah Turner. 
Ichabod Bonney, Jun. and Anna Merrill. 
Cornelius Jones and Saba Bryant. 
Edward Packard and Prudence Stutson. 
Joel Foster and Phebe Buck. 
Peabody Bradford and Hannah Freeman. 
John Pumpilly and Polly French. 
Moses Stevens and Anna Smith. 
Seba Smith and Aphia Stevens. 
Oliver Turner and Elizabeth Stevens. 
George Berry and Rhoda Clough. 


Philip Bradford and Mary Bonney. 
John Merril and Anis Barker. 
Samuel Herrick and Abagail House. 
Ebenezer Irish and Bathsheba McFarland. 
























































































































John Bumpus and Mary Burges. 
John Bonney and Betsey Caswell. 
Josiah Tilson and Hannah Sturdefant. 
John Buck, Jun. and Polley Warrin. 
Moses Bisby and Ellen Buck. 
Abiather Briggs and Metilda Hayford. 
Stephen Putnam and Sally Eliot. 


Volintine Mathews and Sarah Coburn. 

Jesse Coburn and Experience Hinkly. 

Moses Safford and Joanna Pettingail. 

John Warrin Eliot and Sarah Coburn. 

Jothani Briggs and Mehe table Hodgdel. 

Joshua Purinton and Sophia Bryant. 

William Lowel and Margery Fish. 

Martin Bradford and Prudence Dillingham. 

Daniel Merrill and Charitty Record. 

Benjamin Spalden, Jun. and Martilly Roberson. 

William Swan and Bethiah Pratt. 

Nathaniel Daley and Elizabeth True. 

Jeremiah Whitney and Lydia Cole. 

Elisha Keen and Anna Briggs. 


John Gray and Rhoda Andros. 
Nathaniel Bishop and Judith Hercy Gilbert. 
Michael Samson and Betsey House. 
Elnathan Benson and Barshaba Bumper. 
David Dudley and Rebeckah Bucknam. 
Joseph Cole and Molley Washburn. 
David Gorham and Hannah Pratt. 
Job Prince and Hannah Bryant. 
Ruben Hersey and Sally Conant. 
















Nov. 10. Stephen Washburn, Jun. and Batsey Record. 

Nov. 10. Thomas Cormon and Eleler Gardnett. 

Nov. 17. Henry Sawtelle and Lydia Croket. 

Nov. 26. John Cole and Elizabeth Oldham. 


Thomas Seabury and Betsey Harris. 
John Clay and Rebeckah Buck. 
Isaac West and Nabbey Weson. 
Oliver Pratt and Jedidiah Luce. 
William Cobb and Betsey Merrick. 
Benjamin Seabury and Olive Shaw. 
Jonathan Hodgkin and Anna Welsh. 


Jan. 6. Arunah Briggs and Lydia Godfrey. 

Jan. 13. John Munro and Mary Bisbee Keen. 

Nov. II. Joseph Merrill and Jenny Young. 

Nov. 28. Samuel Hillman and Jenny Norton. 


Daniel Bray and Elizabeth Haskel. 
Jacob Horsly and Jenny Clefford. 
Seth Stapels and Asenath Soule. 
Jonathan Pratt and Isabella Collins. 
Caleb Blake and Betsey Briggs. 
Enoch Freeman and Caroline Shaw. 
Josiah Woodman and Ruth Fuller. 
Winslow Ricket and Hannah Chandler. 
Zebulon Harlow and Rachel Bates. 
Jonathan Chandler and Keziah Denning. 























May 26. William Geats and Martha Morgan. 
July 19. Nathaniel Parley and Luendia Strickland. 
Aug. 3. Moses Allen and Sally Morrill. 
Nov. 2. Benjamin Pettingill and Phebe Parker. 
Nov. 19. Joseph Herik and Lidia Safford. 

April 14. Peter Lane and Lois Verrel. 

Jan. I. Charles Hay and Cloe Smith. 

Marriages solemnized by Ichabod Bonney, Esq. 


Asa Smith and Jane Niles. 
William Gott and Deborah Bryant. 


Jonas Cohen and Hannah Mathews. 
Nathaniel Chase and Jemima Harskell. 
Bennett P. Pelley and Elizabeth Merrell. 
Esquire Caswell and Martha Davis. 
Rogers Tarrel and Penelope Perry. 


Anson Sole and Lusenda French. 
William Francis and Rebeckah Thayer. 
John Steapels and Pattey Randel. 
Silvenus Robens and Molley Landers. 
John Bisbe and Sarah Phillbrooks. 
















































Judah Keen and Susanah Roberson. 
Edmond Irish and Bethiah Keen. 
Joshua Davis and Elizabeth Cole. 
Benjamin Chamberlain and Mary Bradford. 
Daniel Merrill and Olive Record. 
Benjamin Washburn and Mary Hogain. 
Thomas Irish and Elizabeth Roberds. 
James Waterman and Kezia Smith. 
Hate Evil Hall and Juda Morgain. 
John Brock and Susanah Crandle. 
Samuel Pelley and Sarah True. 


Mar. 15. Joseph Tyler and Easter Haskel. 

Mar. 15. Jacob Haskel and Mary Jonson. 

Mar. 16. Abner Rason and Nabbey Fuller. 

Mar. 25. Samuel Irish and Elizabeth Teague. 

April 9. Davis Person and Silvina Hall. 

April 9. Benjamin Selley and Pattey Person. 

April II. Cyprion Stephens and Sally Roberson. 

April II. John Washburn and Azubah Fuller. 

April II. Job Barce and and Bettey Turner. 

April 22. Abial Drake and DoUey Phillbrooks. 

April 25. Jonathan Dammon and Patience Josselyn. 

April 26. Caleb Lumber and Hannah Selley. 

May 9. Ezekiel Merrill and Mary Barrows. 

May 12. Philiemon Person and PoUey Cole. 

May 12. William Selley and Sarah Bonney. 

June 27. Nathaniel Benson and Deborah Tubbs. 

June 27. Barnabas Barrows and Martha Tool. 

July 2. Caleb House, Jun. and Bethiah Young. 

July 8. Ebenezer Bray, Jun. and Eleanor Royal. 

Aug. 6. William Stadman and Synthia Garnet. 


Aug. 27. Ebenezer Gary and Martha Brook. 

Sept. 10. William Livermore and Salley Jones. 

Sept. 22. Simeon Dennen and Rebeckah Chickering. 

Oct. 12. William Chenery and Susannah Merry. 

Nov. 10. Stephen Landers and Huldah Russel. 

William Moody, Jun. and Polley Dresser. 
Joseph Mills and Mary True. 
William Loring and Hannah Snell. 
Peleg Weston and Betsey Snell. 
Nathaniel Barrows and Hannah Richmond. 
Ichabod Bryant and Ruth Richmond. 
Caleb Fuller and Hannah Perkins. 
James Niles and Marcy Caswell. 
Richard Taylor and Mary Roberds. 
Isaac Bolster, Jun. and Hannah Cushman. 
Joseph Hutchins and Salley Russel. 
James Follet and Eastur Hall. 
Snow Keen, Jun. and Sarah Bradford. 
Daniel Cambel and Abigail Hall. 

John Huszey and Abigail Lapham. 
Jabez Taylor and Dorcas Irish. 
Jonathan Dwinel and Rebekah Ryns. 
Timothy Smith and Dorothy Smith. 
Solomon Bisbe and Ruth Barrett. 
Ziba Knapp and Elizabeth Basey. 
Peter Silley and Martha Legro. 
Josiah Keen and Eunice Wistact. 
John Brown and Phebe Rogers. 
Joseph Chase and Anna Legrow. 










































































Nathan Hall and Susanna Fobes. 
Benjamin Noys and Phebe Hill. 
Simeon Bucknal and Rebeckah Irish. 
Asa Roberson and Margett Bartlet. 


Samuel Blake, Jun. and Nabey Bonney. 
Joseph Bonney and Rhode Merrill. 
William Witham and Jane Loring. 

Arvady Hayford and Mary . 

Moses Stephen and Nancey Munro. 
Ephraim Turner and Ruth Child. 
Seth Rose and Santha House. 
Joseph Leavitt and Allis Caswell. 


Nov. 3. John Richerdson and Lydia Willard. 
Nov. 10. Bani Teague, Jun. and Sarah Tuttle. 
Nov. 17. Joel Crocket and Sarah Parlin. 


Jan. 31. Joseph Crocket and Hannah Parlin. 
Feb. 9. Levi Perry and Nancy . 


The Upper Street was for many years the princi- 
pal thoroughfare of travel through town, it being a 
portion of the road from Farmington to Portland. 
Places of entertainment for travelers on that street 
soon became a public convenience, if not a neces- 
sity. Joseph Leavitt was the first to open his 


house for the accommodation of travelers, and it 
was patronized as a tavern for years, but he never 
put out a sign. His house was located just north 
of the cemetery, where Messrs. Bryant and Wilson 
now live. 

About half a mile further north John Keen re- 
sided, who opened his house for the accommodation 
of travelers, a few months later. He put out a sign 
to notify the weary and hungry that they might 
find rest and refreshment at his inn. This was the 
first sign hoisted by any citizen of the town to 
invite in the needy for refreshment and rest. This 
sign did duty for many years, and is now carefully 
preserved by Benjamin Keen, of North Turner, as 
a memento of the olden time. But the hostelry, to 
which it invited the weary for rest, has fallen into 
decay, and nothing remains to mark the place 
where it stood. 

Afterward, General Alden Blossom, whose resi- 
dence was nearly opposite, put out a sign, and for 
many years furnished entertainment for man and 
beast as need might require. But the sign and 
the inn-holder have long since passed away. 

In the north part of the town, Isaiah Leavitt 
hung out a sign bearing the date of 1806, and for 
a considerable time his house was open for the 
entertainment of travelers. This sign has been 
carefully preserved, and is an heirloom, regarded 


with a sort of veneration as a relic of the old tav- 
ern in which their ancestors received their guests. 

At a later date, David Talbot opened a tavern at 
the south end of Upper Street, where Lucius Gary 
now lives. It was a large, two-story house, which 
was long since taken down, and a smaller dwelling 
erected better suited to the needs of the family 
occupying it. 

After a time, people became tired of traveling 
over the hills which the early settlers chose for 
farms, and demanded that a road should be laid 
out through town over land nearer level, and on a 
more direct line to Portland, where the farmers 
found a market for their products. H^nce, a road 
was opened through the village, the Upper Street 
was no longer a great thoroughfare of travel, and 
its taverns ceased to be patronized. A hotel was 
opened at the village by William B. Bray, and later 
by Isaac Gross. The latter house, or one close by, 
has been open for the accommodation of travelers 
most of the time until the present, but there has 
been frequent change of landlords. The house 
has now become the "Traveler's Home." 

At North Turner Village, a hotel was opened 
years ago. The house was built of brick, and was 
sufficiently large for the needs of the place. With- 
in a few years a large addition has been made, and 
great changes also in the internal arrangements, so 

Mrs. Hannah C. Irish is the daughter of Stephen 
Foster, the first white male child born in Winthrop. 
He helped bury the remains of Sagar, who was exe- 
cuted in the winter of 1833. His body was kept 
forty days in the attic of his mother's house, near 
the Forks of the Road, so called, now Manchester. 
'* On the east branch of the river, opposite the 
southerly end of the Delta Island, the tourist will 
notice a few old bricks. These mark the spot 
where once stood the cabin of the great hunter, 
Stephen Foster. Like Daniel Boone, he preferred 
the wild woods to meadows and wheat fields. He 
sickened and died while on a visit to his native 
town, and was kindly cared for by one who drew 
her first breath in the same town, and near the 
same spot. His descendants are among the first 
families of Leeds." The great-grandfather of Mrs. 
Irish, Timothy Foster, came from England with 
three brothers, John, David, and Stephen. She 
was born Januarys, 1804, and married Daniel Irish 
November 14, 1831. She has lived in Turner 
twenty-seven years, and accepted the Methodist 
faith at the age of twelve. 


that the building presents a pleasing appearance, 
and -is capable of accommodating a large number 
of guests. Elias Keen is the landlord. 

Since the railroads have been in operation the 
course of travel has changed, and the farmers do 
not take their products to market in the manner of 
former times, so that the hotels in a country town 
have small patronage, and few are disposed to 
subject themselves to the inconvenience of being 
always prepared to entertain travelers, who seldom 


The first school taught in town was a private 
school on the Lower Street, about 1788, Mr. Arthur 
Bradman being the teacher. Probably nothing 
was taught but reading, writing, arithmetic, and 
spelling. No text books were used in arithmetic, 
but the teacher placed examples on the slates of 
the scholars, and by performing these, with such 
explanations as were deemed necessary, they gained 
a knowledge of the rudiments of arithmetic. This 
method of teaching was practiced for many years. 
The same man continued in the business so long 
that he came to be known as Master Bradman. 
About 1 790, Mr. Joseph Stockbridge, of Freeport, 
was employed to teach a public school on the 
Upper Street. This was probably near where Wil- 


liam C. Whitman now lives. After this, two 
schools were kept in town, and Elisha Sylvester 
and Benjamin Evens were the teachers for several 
years. But there was no supervision of these 
schools, at least the town chose no committee for 
this purpose. A school committee was chosen at 
the annual meeting in 1797, but their duties were 
simply those of agents, probably, since a member 
of this committee was chosen for each school dis- 
trict in town, and the committee was enlarged from 
year to year as the number of districts increased. 

Very gradually the schools were improved, the 
course of study extended, more ample funds were 
provided for their support, and at length a com- 
mittee was chosen annually to have the supervision 
of them. The trustees of the school fund decided 
to establish a school of a high grade for the ben- 
efit of those who wished to push their education 
farther than they could in town schools, and to 
encourage and foster a general love of learning 
among all classes of the people. These schools 
have been kept in the autumn, changing their 
location from year to year that all parts of the town 
might be equally benefited by them, and it has 
been the design to make them equal to an acad- 
emy. In them the youth pursue advanced courses 
of study, and even fit themselves for college. 

For a number of years, free high schools have 


been sustained in the spring, which have offered 
nearly the same facilities for an education that the 
grammar schools have, which are kept in the fall. 
By these means the standard of education has 
been raised, the town schools have been improved, 
the course of study has been extended, and the 
young people have been favored with better facili- 
ties for acquiring an education that will fit them 
for the various duties of life. 

Several years ago, the town voted to abolish the 
district system, and place the schools wholly under 
the care of the school committee. The school-houses 
are owned by the town, and the committee employ 
the teachers and have the care and supervision of 
the schools, which are all of the same length. This 
plan gives excellent satisfaction. 


Dr. Daniel Child was the first physician in town. 
He came from Woodstock, Connecticut, in 1781. 
He settled on the Lower Street, on the farm now 
occupied by Henry Turner. He was chosen mod- 
erator at the first town meeting held after the town 
was incorporated, and was elected to this office at 
several annual meetings thereafter. He was also 
chosen by the town one of the committee to invite 
Rev. Jphn Strickland to be the first settled minis- 
ter in the township. He is remembered as a 


skilful physician, and was especially noted for his 
success in the treatment of bilious colic. He 
rarely failed of saving the patient, even though 
given over by other doctors, whom he did not per- 
mit to be present when he made his prescription. 

At that time, physicians uniformly rode on 
horseback to visit their patients, their medicines 
being carried in saddlebags. Dr. Child was a lover 
of strong drink, and sometimes, unfortunately, was 
unable to mount his horse. But the animal was so 
well trained, and was so obedient to his master, 
that at his command, he would lie down for the 
doctor to crawl upon his back, when he would rise 
and proceed gently on his way. If the doctor 
leaned hard to one side, the horse would move that 
way, so as to favor the unsteady rider; and if the 
doctor fell off, he would stand over him and per- 
mit no one to touch him. But on one occasion 
the faithful horse departed from his usual custom. 
One cold day in the midst of a driving snow-storm, 
the doctor, perhaps chilled with the cold, fell to the 
ground. The horse did not stay to watch over 
him, but hastened home and on reaching the door 
whinnied vigorously. Some one answered to the 
call, who, taking in the situation at a glance, leaped 
upon the horse's back, who immediately turned and 
retraced his steps, halting when he reached the 
place where the doctor lay, covered with snow. He 


was placed upon the horse and carried safely home. 
A good understanding and a strong attachment 
must have existed between the doctor and his horse. 
The former died in 1802, leaving many descend- 
ants, some of whom continue to this day. 

Dr. Luther Gary came from Bridgewater, Massa- 
chusetts, in 1 798, and settled near the south end of 
Lower Street. He possessed intelligence, a good 
education for the times, and was a man of high 
character. He was a successful practitioner, and 
soon acquired a good reputation which he sustained 
until the infirmities of age compelled him to retire 
gradually from the active duties of his profession. 
He raised up a large family of sons and daughters, 
but all removed from the town except one son, 
Hugh, who lived and died on the home farm. He 
was several times elected president of the Medical 
Society of Maine, and, in 1805, was appointed 
judge of the Court of Common Pleas for the 
county of Oxford, which then had been recently 
organized. He spent a busy life very usefully, and 
died in old age, retaining the esteem and the confi- 
dence of the community. His death occurred in 

Dr. Timothy Howe was born in Hillsborough, 
New Hampshire, in 1778, and moved into Turner 
about 1804, his family then consisting of a wife 
and two children. He was the first postmaster at 


North Turner. After residing in town several 
years, he removed to Brettun's Mills, Livermore, 
where his son, Hon. Timothy O. Howe, was born. 
He returned to Turner, and resided at a place called 
Richmond's Corner until his death, which occurred 
in August, 1848, at the age of seventy. He was 
older in appearance than many men of that age, as 
he made no effort to keep himself young. He was 
interested in learning, and in the general improve- 
ment of society. He wrote a history of Turner 
which he left in manuscript. He gathered up 
much valuable information respecting the early 
settlers of the town that otherwise must have been 
lost, and the author of this volume is indebted to 
him for many interesting facts which could not 
have been gathered from any other source. 

Dr. Philip Bradford was born at Turner Center, 
formerly known as Bradford's Village, July 15, 
1789. After gaining what education he could in 
the town schools, he studied at Hebron Academy 
for a considerable time. Having chosen the medi- 
cal profession as the one to which he would devote 
the years of his life, he attended lectures in the 
medical school connected with Dartmouth College, 
and in due time received a diploma, showing that 
he had accomplished the prescribed course of study 
in a satisfactory manner. He chose to locate in 
his native town, and in the place of his birth. He 


was a successful practitioner, and did a large busi- 
ness in the wide field which was open to him. He 
practiced in Greene and Leeds, and other towns, 
as well as in Turner. He enjoyed the confidence 
of the public both as a man and physician, and was 
actively engaged in his profession until about a 
week previous to his death. He died of pneu- 
monia, after a short sickness, June 24, 1863, aged 
nearly seventy-four. 

Dr. Henry D. Irish was born in Buckfield in 
182 1. He made the best use of the slender advan- 
tages possessed in early life, studied medicine, and 
located at Turner Village December, 1847. He 
devoted himself to the business of his profession 
with great industry, and in due time pushed his 
way to the front. He was energetic, persevering, 
and persistent in a remarkable degree. Whatever 
he undertook he engaged in with a will, and he 
grew in usefulness and in the public estimation to 
the last. He gained a large country practice, and 
was the leading physician in town at the time of 
his death, which occurred January 16, 1871, at the 
age of fifty. He died of typhoid fever. Though 
passing away in the midst of life, he left a com- 
petency for his family. 

Dr. William H. Jewett was born at Kent's Hill, 
Readfield, about 1825. Living near to the Wes- 
leyan Seminary located on the hill, he enjoyed 


good facilities for gaining a thorough education. 
After receiving a diploma which entitled him to 
the degree of m.d., he located in Turner Village, 
and was a resident physician through life, except a 
term of service as surgeon in the War of the 
Rebellion. He was interested in education, and 
for a series of years was one of the town school 
committee, and discharged the duties of his office 
in a very acceptable manner. He was a faithful 
physician, and he sustained an irreproachable char- 
acter. The last of his life he suffered much from 
internal cancer, which caused his death August 26, 
1879, at the age of fifty-three years and eight 
months. His wife did not survive him long, and a 
daughter alone is left of the family. 

Dr. Elbridge G. Edgecomb came from Liver- 
more, in which town he was born in 18 14. Three 
brothers in his family became physicians, the oldest 
being now settled near the place of his birth. El- 
bridge G. graduated at the medical school connected 
with Bowdoin College, at Brunswick, and practiced 
medicine in different places, but settled at Turner 
Center in 1865 or 1866, where he has remained 
until the present time, except that for a few years, 
after the death of Dr. Irish, he was located at 
Turner Village. He has sustained a good reputa- 
tion, has been successful in his profession, and now, 
at the age of seventy-two, is active, and seems yet 
to have the promise of many years of usefulness. 


Dr. Richmond Bradford, when a young man, 
opened an office at his father's, near the south line 
of the town, but he soon removed to Auburn, 
where he became a well-known physician, and con- 
tinued in his profession until the infirmities of age 
compelled him to relinquish its duties. 

Dr. Roscoe Smith opened an office in Turner 
Village, April 25, 1871. He is a self-made man, 
possessing abundant energy, and a determined pur- 
pose to succeed in his profession. He has secured 
a large country practice, and devotes himself with 
unwearied diligence to the duties of his calling. 
He is especially interested in temperance, and gives 
it the weight of his influence on all occasions. He 
is yet in the prime of life, and many years of use- 
fulness are apparently before him. 

Dr. H. L. Irish commenced practice in Turner 
Village, March 6, 1875. He is the son of Dr. H. 
D. Irish, who died in 1871. It was his wish, I 
think, that his son should be his successor, and be 
prepared to take upon himself the duties of his 
profession, as he himself should be compelled to 
cease from them. In accordance with this wish 
and desire of the father, the son studied medicine, 
and after graduating from a medical school in New 
York City, reopened the office which had been 
closed by the death of the senior Dr. Irish, and 
continues to practice in the very field of effort in 


which his father toiled. He has also served much 
of the time as a member of the school committee, 
and to the satisfaction of the people of the town. 

Dr. John T. Gushing was born in Turner, Sep- 
tember 30, 1 83 1. He removed to Ohio, where he 
lived for about twenty years, except that he served 
for a time as assistant surgeon in the army during 
the War of the Rebellion. He was settled in 
Huron, where he practiced medicine and enjoyed 
the position which he occupied as a physician in 
the city. On the death of Sulivan Hale, Esq., Mrs. 
Cushing's father, he was persuaded by Senator 
Hale to remove to Turner, and take care of his 
aged mother, who was unwilling to leave the home 
in which she had lived so long. There being no 
other member of the family who could conveniently 
perform this filial duty. Dr. Gushing returned to 
Turner in April, 1881. He is so situated that he 
does not choose to practice medicine, but makes 
himself useful as one of the school committee, and 
in other ways as a citizen of his native town. 


It is said that Ezekiel Whitman, who became a 
distinguished jurist, came into Turner on the 7th 
of May, 1799, in the midst of a blinding snow- 
storm, and opened a law office, but he remained only 
a short time. 


William K. Porter came from Bath in 1818, and 
established himself at the village. He was well 
read in his profession, was a safe counselor, and 
acquired a lucrative practice for a country lawyer, 
and continued in the business of his profession 
until 1834, when he died, greatly lamented. He 
was honorable, dignified in bearing, faithful in the 
discharge of every duty, and worthy of confidence. 
He was the first postmaster at the village, and 
retained the office until his death. He is the only 
lawyer that settled permanently in town. 

Not long after his decease, Charles Andrews 
opened a law office in town, and was popular in 
his profession for a few years. He represented 
the town in the Legislature, and had great influ- 
ence over the masses, but there was not sufficient 
business in his profession to make it desirable to 
remain, and he sought a location elsewhere. 

Timothy Ludden practiced law for a few years, 
but soon removed to Lewiston. He was at one 
time Judge of Probate for Oxford County, and was 
reporter of decisions from January 29, 1857 to 1859 
for volumes forty-three and forty-four. 

Mandeville T. Ludden, a relative of Timothy, 
began the practice of law in town, but after a few 
years he also removed to Lewiston, where he be- 
came a noted advocate at the Androscoggin bar, 
and achieved success in his profession. He was 


actively engaged in the duties of his calling until a 
short time previous to his death. 

Barzilla Streeter practiced law in North Turner 
for a few years, but he died long ago, and no one 
has chosen since his death to open a law office in 
the place. 

For years there has been no lawyer in town, and 
no inducement for one to settle therein. The peo- 
ple are not fond of litigation, and the justice can 
perform most of the duties required of the profes- 
sional lawyer, who therefore becomes a gentleman 
of leisure, and seeks a more desirable location. 


William Bradford, the second male child born in 
town, was a great lover of music. He played the 
bass viol, but was not prominent as a singer. He 
enjoyed very highly the tones of the pipe organ, 
and resolved to procure one for use in his home. 
He had one made in Portland about the year 1830, 
a sweet toned instrument, which in due time filled 
his house with music and his soul with rapture. 
He took a daughter to Portland to learn to play 
it. He would be moved to tears as he was trans- 
ported by the music of that organ. Most of the 
people in the town and vicinity had never seen or 
heard such an instrument, and numbers went to 
hear and enjoy. Even parties were got up to 


visit his house excursion-like from various parts of 
Turner, and from Buckfield, and all felt well paid 
for their trouble in seeing and hearing the organ. 
It was a new thing to nearly all, and the style and 
character of the music was unlike any music to 
which they had previously listened. The organ 
remained in the home a number of years, and was a 
source of great enjoyment to the music-loving por- 
tion of the family. But a change was at length 
effected in that home ; the daughter that played it 
presided over a home of her own, to which the 
organ was transferred, but for many years it has 
done duty in the Universalist Church at Turner 


Was organized May 23, 1874. This grange has 
increased in numbers and influence from the first, 
and has become one of the most prosperous in the 
State. It owns a building at Turner Center, which 
contains dining-room, kitchen, cloak-room, entry, 
and store, on the lower floor, and on the second 
floor, a hall with ante-rooms. Meetings are held on 
the first and third Saturdays of each month. In the 
fall and winter, these meetings continue through 
the day. A paper is read in the forenoon by a 
member appointed for the purpose, on some subject 
relating to husbandry, and is followed by discus- 


sions. The exercises are interspersed with singing, 
the grange being favored with musical talent. At 
noon, a picnic dinner is served, and is made an 
occasion of much social enjoyment. In the after- 
noon, a lady member reads a paper on some subject 
deemed appropriate, perhaps it will be a poem, or 
essay on a moral or social theme, and this is fol- 
lowed by discussions. The singing of grange and 
other songs and hymns is interspersed as in the 
morning, and thus the day is pleasantly and prof- 
itably spent. These meetings are usually well 
attended, and a good degree of interest is mani- 
fested. The social advantages of these meetings 
are considerable, the interest in farm life is in- 
creased, and a more thorough knowledge of hus- 
bandry is gained. In the summer season, the 
meetings are held in the evening only, but are 
conducted in much the same manner as the all-day 
meetings of winter. All the meetings are well 
attended, the people being drawn to them by their 
social attractions, and their discussions of farm and 
other topics. 


March 3, i860, a dispensation was granted by M. 
W. G. M. Hiram Chase, of the Grand Lodge of 
Maine, to George W. Turner, Hira Bradford, H. 
N. Mayo, Philo Clark, Seth D. Andrews, Deering 


Farrar, F. M. Mayo, M. T. Ludden, William Bray, 
Henry Turner, Charles E. Bradford, Gilbert Phil- 
lips, and Rufus Prince, to open and hold a Lodge 
of Free and Accepted Masons, under the name of 
Nezinscot Lodge, at Turner, Maine. 


George W. Turner, Master. Chas. E. Bradford, Sen. Deacon. 
Seth D. Andrews, Sen. Warden. Henry Turner, Junior Deacon. 
H. N. Mayo, Junior Warden. Gilbert Phillips, Senior Steward. 
Deering Farrar^ Treasurer. F. M. Mayo, Junior Steward. 
Rufus Prince, Secretary. Philo Clark, Marshal. 

M. T. Ludden, Tyler. 

May 3, i860, a charter was granted, and on the 
23d day of June following, the Lodge was duly 
consecrated, and the following officers installed: 
George W. Turner, M.; S. D. Andrews, S. W.; H. 
N. Mayo, J. W.; Deering Farrar, T. ; Rufus Prince, 
Sec; M. T. Ludden, S. D.; Henry Turner, J. D.; 
Gilbert Phillips, S. S.; F. M. Mayo, J. S.; Jehiel 
Eldridge, Tyler. 

The stated communication of the Lodge is held 
on Saturday on or next preceding each full moon, 
at seven o'clock p.m., unless otherwise ordered by 
the Master. 

This Lodge has continued to prosper; it owns a 
three-story building in the village in which it has 
rooms fitted up for its own use, and rents the first 


and second floors. Several of its members are 
members also of the Mutual Life Insurance Com- 
pany, which has been organized for the benefit of 
the Masonic Fraternity. 


Was granted a dispensation January 6, 1876, and 
on May 3, 1876, it was granted a charter, and was 
constituted June 30, following. 


M. E. Carlos E. Kempton, High Priest, 

E. Harrison M. Pratt, King, 

E. Philo Clark, Scribe. 

Comp. Henry C. Munson, Chaplain. 

" Horace C. Haskell, Captain of the Host. 

** Charles H. Thayer, Principal Sojourner, 

" Franklin K. Jack, Royal Arch Captain. 

" Sumner S. Merrill, Master 3d Vail. 

** William L. Loring, Master 2d Vail. 

** John E. Ashe, Master ist Vail. 

** Seth D. Andrews, Treasurer. 

" Francis T. Faulkner, Secretary. 

** Asa Bradford, Senior Steward. 

'* Frederick M. Loring, Junior Steward. 

** Henry W. Humphrey, Sentinel. 

The meetings of the Chapter are on the Satur- 
day next succeeding each full moon, at such hour 
and place as the Chapter or the High Priest may 



A Lodge of Odd Fellows, with twenty-one char- 
ter members, was instituted March 30, 1885. The 
officers then installed were Dr. H. L. Irish, N. G.; 
D. Y. Harlow, V. N. G.; Caleb Blake, Treasurer; 
W. B. Beals, Rec. Secretary; and I. F. Quinby, 
Per. Secretary. They meet Monday evening of 
each week, at the village, and have now increased to 
fifty-four members. They have met all their pecun- 
iary obligations, and have funds in the treasury. 
They lease a room, or rooms, for their meetings. 


There is a healthy temperance sentiment preva- 
lent in town, and there have been various tem- 
perance societies during the forty years past. The 
Washingtonian movement, which began as early as 
1 84 1, and swept over the State, made its influence 
felt in Turner, and a new interest was awakened in 
the subject. All parts of the town felt the awak- 
ening, and addresses were given and societies were 
formed for the purpose of reforming the drunkard, 
and of shielding the young from the power of 
temptation. Much good has been done by these 
means, and the people, as a whole, are decidedly 
temperate. An agent is annually chosen to sell 
liquors for medicinal and mechanical purposes, and 
occasionally one feigns sickness that he may obtain 


liquor to satisfy his craving thirst, but seldom with 

There are three lodges of good Templars active 
in this work; one at the village, one at North 
Turner, and one at Chase's Mills. Many young 
people are members of these societies, and thus 
they receive good and do good, and strengthen 
the temperance sentiment in the community. 


For many years no pains were taken to make the 
place of burial in Turner pleasant and attractive, 
but the acre set apart for the burial of the dead was 
neglected, and permitted to grow up to weeds and 
briars. By this means the associations of death 
were gloomy and repulsive, and the thought of 
death awakened any emotions rather than those of 
a cheerful nature, and the young especially experi- 
enced a sense of relief when the "graveyard" had 
been safely passed, in the dark especially. But 
when taste began to be exercised in the planning 
of the grounds, in the erection of monuments, and 
in making the graves attractive with flowers and 
flowering shrubs, the cemetery assumed an attrac- 
tive appearance, and the thoughts and associations 
awakened by its presence ceased to be dreadful, but 
were pleasant and cheerful rather. Thus the cem- 
etery becomes a teacher, an inspirer of hope, and 


invites reflection and calm communion with dear 
ones, not lost, but gone before. 

The location of the first cemetery was on the 
Upper Street, adjoining the farm of Joseph Leavitt, 
whose house was the first tavern in town. It is a 
small plot of ground, supposed by the early settlers, 
doubtless, to be large enough for their needs. It 
was common property, and was not laid out in lots 
with paths or walks between, but each one buried 
his deceased friend in any part of it he might 
choose, which was not already occupied. Head- 
stones or monuments were not generally erected, 
and in process of time, it became difficult for one 
not well acquainted with the grounds to tell where 
the remains of a former generation were buried. 
There was little or no order in the location of the 
graves, and in making a new one, very likely it 
would be found to be the place of an ancient one. 
Ezekiel Bradford was, probably, the first one buried 
here, and in this centennial year, his descendants 
have erected a monument to his memory. An 
account and description of this is annexed. This 
cemetery became the resting place of the early 
settlers as they passed away, and probably there is 
now scarcely a square foot of soil within its walls, 
in which the dust of some departed one does not 
mingle. It is a chaos of graves, into which it 
seems impossible to introduce any order. Many 


headstones and monuments have been erected in 
the later years, and some efforts have been made to 
relieve it of the desolate and dreary look which it 
formerly had, but not with full success. It cannot 
now be easily made a pleasant and attractive city 
of the dead. Amidst its monuments and its un- 
marked graves, one feels invited to muse thought- 
fully and solemnly upon life, upon its changes, and 
the future which is seen only by the light of 


A fine monument has been recently erected, in the Upper 
Street burying-ground, to the memory of those noble pioneers, 
Ezekiel Bradford and wife, whose graves have until now 
remained unmarked, save by the common stones of the field. 
The idea was conceived as early as 187 1, by Lieutenant R. B. 
Bradford, United States Navy, a great-great-grandson, who, 
while recovering from a tedious illness, occupied himself in 
collecting data concerning his branch of the Bradford family in 
Maine. With this end in view, he prepared an interesting 
historical paper on the family, which was published in the 
Lewis ton Weekly journal of January 18, 1883. In this paper 
he stated the object in view, and invited subscriptions to be 
sent to him, and to L. P. Bradford or A. E. Bradford, both of 
Turner, they having consented to act with him as a committee 
to forward the enterprise. A few generous contributions, and 
many small ones, were received at once ; but since that time, 
Lieutenant Bradford, having in the course of his profession left 
the country, the work has, until recently, made slow progress, 
or none at all. 


During the past winter, the preparations for our approaching 
centennial celebration, and a general re-awakening of interest 
in the history of the town and its first settlers, revived the 
subject in the minds of those interested. The money on hand, 
however, was quite inadequate to the purpose in view, and its 
accomplishment appeared doubtful. At this juncture, the 
movement received a new impetus in the form of substantial 
aid from Mellen Bray, Esq., of Boston, a great-grandson, and a 
native of Turner, and Lieutenant Commander Bradford, above 
mentioned, also a native of Turner. To the united liberality 
of these gentlemen, the completion of the enterprise is due. 

The monument is of Quincy granite, eight feet in height, 
weighing five thousand pounds, is beautiful in design and 
execution, and is an honor to the many descendants who have 
contributed to its erect jon. 

The inscription is as follows : — 

Front : 

EzEKiEL Bradford, 
Great-Grandson of Gov. William Bradford, 


Plymouth Colony; 
Son of Ephraim Bradford 


Elizabeth Brewster. 
Born in Kingston, Mass., 1728. 
Died in Turner, Maine, 18 16. 



Betsey Chandler, 
Wife of 

EzEKiEL Bradford, 
Born in Duxbury, Mass., 1728. 
Died in Turner, Maine, 181 i. 

Six op Their Sons Settled in Turner. 
Opposite Side: 

All Honor to Our Pioneer Ancestors. 


At an early period, a place for burial was found 
to be necessary at the village, and a lot was obtained 
for the purpose. It was common property, and any 
one who had occasion to use it, selected a site for a 
grave where it pleased him. Thus it was, in the 
course of years, nearly all occupied, but little or no 
order was observed in locating the graves. Within 
a few years, the people being more thoughtful of 
such things than in former times, an effort was 
made to introduce some order into the arrangement 
of the lots, and to have paths for the accomodation 
of visitors and friends. The effort was only par- 
tially successful, yet there are now several family 
lots on which tasteful monuments have been 
erected, and surviving friends can visit the resting 
place of their departed, feeling that they sleep side 
by side, free from the intrusion of any not their 

At the Center, a portion of land was early devoted 
to the burial of the dead, but it was not laid out in 
order, and each one had the privilege of selecting 
any place for a grave which was not already occu- 
pied. But several years ago, an association was 
formed to take charge of the cemetery, and put the 
grounds in order. Walks were made, graves were 
removed when necessary, lots for family use were 
arranged and sold to those who wished to buy, and 
a large addition was made to the grounds by pur- 
chase. Though it was impossible to lay out the 


grounds as would be desirable, without disturbing a 
large portion of the graves, yet something like 
order has been introduced, and each family has a 
lot sacred to the rest of its own dead. Most of the 
lots have received some care, and many monuments 
have been erected to the memory of departed loved 
ones. The association has kept up its organiza- 
tion, and meets annually for the choice of officers 
and the transaction of business. Though all has 
not been done that is desirable, yet the grounds 
have been improved, and it is a somewhat attractive 
place of rest for the departed. 

At North Turner, a parcel of land was secured 
many years ago for burial purposes. The grounds 
are laid out in such a manner, that each family lot 
is accessible by a path or drive-way. Some pains 
have been taken to make the grounds attractive, 
but they might be made more attractive still, when 
more pleasant thoughts would be associated with 
death, and lessons of cheerfulness and hope be 
taught, with a more emphatic emphasis, to all who 
visit the place. For the cemetery is a teacher no 
less than the church. If the place where our dead 
lie is made beautiful and attractive, death ceases to 
be the king of terrors, and we contemplate upon it 
with emotions of solemn joy. 

At Richmond's Corner, two miles east of North 
Turner, a portion of land has been set apart for the 


burial of the dead, and enclosed by a neat fence, as 
other burial places are in town. It is sufficiently- 
large for the accommodation of the community in 
the midst of which it is located. Families own lots 
large enough, doubtless, in many instances, to fur- 
nish a resting place for the departed of several 
generations. Many neat memorial stones mark the 
places where the remains of the loved were buried. 

Near Chase's Mills, in the westerly part of the 
town, an elevated spot of ground has been selected 
for a cemetery. It is not large, and having been 
used for many years, there are apparently few lots 
which have not been occupied already. Doubtless, 
more sleep in that narrow enclosure, than now live 
in that section of the town. The grounds show 
that departed friends are remembered, but all has 
not been done that might be to make the place a 
pleasant city of the dead. 

On the river road, below the center bridge, a 
small parcel of ground has been surrounded by a 
substantial stone wall, and set apart as a burial 
place. But it has a neglected appearance, for 
which reason many residing in its near vicinity 
chose to bury their dead in other places. It is not 
pleasant to commit the remains of friends to rest in 
a place which has little to make it attractive. 

There are a few private, or family cemeteries in 
town. Those living at a distance from either of 


the grounds described above, chose to set apart a 
plot of ground for burial purposes. Two or more 
neighbors sometimes united in this work, so that 
they who had dwelt together in life, should not be 
separated in death. 

The family sketches which follow appear out of 
place, because the information necessary to make 
them was gained at a late hour. Mr. Pratt kept a 
record of various matters relating to his family and 
his affairs, a small portion of which has been acces- 
sible to me, and from it a few items have been 
taken for the benefit of the reader. 

Dan Pratt was born in Taunton, Bristol County, 
Massachusetts, October 7, 1761. Deba Jones, his 
wife, was born in Taunton, March 22, 1766. They 
were joined in marriage, November 14, 1783. Mr. 
Pratt kept the record of his children's birth with 
unusual exactness, as follows : — 

John, their first child, was born in Taunton, January 14, 1785, 
Friday morning at nine o'clock. 

Cyrus was born in Taunton, April 20, 1787, at ten o'clock 
Friday evening. 

**Salla" was born in Taunton, May 19, 1790, at six o'clock 
Thursday evening. 

Daniel was born in Taunton, June 6, 1793, at two o'clock 
Thursday afternoon. 

Benjamin was born in Taunton, March 15, 1796, at four 
o'clock Tuesday morning. 


Their sixth child was born in Taunton, April 5, 1799, at one 
o'clock Friday morning, and died Sunday, the fourteenth of the 
same month. 

Deba was born in Turner, October 10, 1800, at ten o'clock 
in the morning. She married Thomas Waterman and died June 
28, 1825, aged twenty-five years. 

Almina was born in Turner, June 29, 1805, at one o'clock in 
the afternoon. 

On the eleventh day of September, 1799, he 
removed from Taunton to Turner. He reached 
Capt. Sylvester Jones' the twenty-seventh of the 
same month, and remained with him until April 29, 
1800, when he removed his family to John Turner's, 
with whom he lived until January 10, 1805, when 
he moved into his own house. His farm was lot 
198, which he bought of Jeremiah Dillingham. 
He makes these notes which will be read with 

On April 15, 16, and 17, 1803, snow fell twenty or twenty-two 
inches deep on a level. And on the eighth of May, snow fell 
to the depth of ten or twelve inches. 

June 7, 8, and 9, 18 16, there was a fall of snow. 

May 27, 1820, snow fell to the depth of three to six inches. 

Mr. Pratt was in the War of the Revolution, and 
his gun and many other things which made up a 
soldier's outfit at that time have been carefully 
preserved, and they are interesting souvenirs of the 



List of Revolutionary soldiers who have resided 
in town. Col. William Turner, aide to Gen. Wash- 
ington ; Elijah Dresser, in the battles of Bunker 
Hill and Stillwater; Peleg Wadsworth, Brigadier- 
General in Massachusetts militia; Samuel Blake, 
Mark Andrews, Moses Merrill, Levi Merrill, Mala- 
chi Waterman, Richard Phillips, Abner Phillips, 
Joseph Merrill, served in defence of Boston in 
1775 ; Luther Gary, Joseph Wardwell, Jasial Smith, 
Laban Smith, James Lara, Bennet Pumpilly, 
Nathaniel Sawtelle, Richard Hine, Benjamin Co- 
nant, Paul Lowell, Joshua Davis, Moses Snell, 
Simeon Caswell, in the continental army; Benjamin 
Jones, John Keen, John Keen Jr., Asa Battles, 
Nathaniel Shaw, Daniel French, Jairus Phillips, 
Nathan Richmond, Benjamin Merrill, William Hay- 
ford, Job Randall, Solomon Millett, Ephraim An- 
drews, Benjamin Alderi, William Putnam, John 
Allen, Thomas Atherton, Benjamin Chamberlain, 
Wait Bradford, Isaac Phillips, Ichabod Phillips, in 
the Massachusetts militia; Joseph Ludden, in the 
Boston tea-party and in the continental army ; Jesse 
Bradford, on guard of Burgoyne's captured army, 
1777; Abner Thayer, on Castle William in Boston 
harbor; Elijah Fisher, member of Gen. Washing- 
ton's life-guard ; Abial Turner, scales-man in com- 
missary department ; John Bailey, last three years' 


service ; Dan Pratt, in Rhode Island State troops ; 
Cornelius Jones, Massachusetts State troops and 
seaman ; Andrew Bass, fell in the battle of Still- 
water, 1777; James Allen, musician in Massa- 
chusetts line ; Jacob Gardner, during the war ; 
Nathaniel Marston, in New Hampshire line. 

WAR OF 181 2. 

Judge Prince, in his history of Turner furnished 
for the Androscoggin County Map, makes these 
remarks: "In this war the following citizens of 
the town volunteered, and served on the Canada 
frontier one year or more. Capt. Stephen Turner, 
Isaac Allen, James Allen, James Allen Jr., Jacob 
Merrill, William Lombard, Theodocius Merrill, 
Peter Lombard, John Bailey, Charles Staples, 
Josiah Keen, Israel Smith, Jacob Keen, and Barnet 
Pumpilly. Captain Turner was killed at the battle 
of Bridgewater, and Theodocius Merrill died in the 
army. In September, 18 14, a British seventy-four 
gun-ship lay off Portland harbor, and other indica- 
tions that the enemy designed to land on our coast 
so alarmed the people that the entire militia were 
called out to defend the sea-coast. The militia of 
this town consisted of two companies of infantry, 
commanded by Captains Seth Staples and Aaron 
Soule, and one of artillery, commanded by Capt. 
Leonard Richmond. The Turner troops were or- 


dered to Portland where they served two weeks, 
when about one-half were drafted to serve forty 
days longer, the others given liberty to return 
home. Those of the infantry thus liberated re- 
turned, but the artillery (with two or three excep- 
tions) remained the forty days. In that campaign, 
Mr. Benjamin Jones of this town furnished nine 
sons, leaving no one at home but the ' old folks ' 
and five daughters to do the harvesting ; of these 
fourteen children, all lived to be married and have 
families of their own. Previous to this, Mr. Jones 
had lost one daughter in 1804, aged one year." 


I quote from the same authority, as follows: 
" The Aroostook or Madawaska War is entitled to 
some notice. Although more tears than blood 
were shed, and not a person was killed or wounded, 
and but one taken prisoner, still it was of sufficient 
magnitude to sound the tocsin of war, and to claim 
the attention of the whole country at the time. 
There had been some difficulty on the northeastern 
boundary of Maine, and dispute as to the true line 
between this State and the Province of New Bruns- 
wick. In 1839, the crisis came. A party from 
New Brunswick seized Mr. Rufus Mclntire, land 
agent of Maine, near the Madawaska settlement, 
and carried him to Fredricton on a horse-sled. The 


news sped with the rapidity of lightning over the 
country. Gov. Fairfield, of this State, called out 
the militia. Gen. Hodsdon, of Penobscot, took 
command, and the troops rendezvoused at Bangor 
and Augusta. Those from Turner marched no 
further than Augusta. Gen. Scott was ordered by 
the government to Maine, and upon his arrival at 
Augusta, sent a communication to Sir John Harvey 
of the provincial government. Mr. Mclntire was 
released, the alarm subsided, and the troops were 
disbanded and returned home. In 1842, a treaty 
was formed between the two nations, and the whole 
cause of trouble amicably adjusted." 

The Aroostook War caused a great deal of 
excitement and anxiety in Turner, as in other parts 
of the State, for if war should come in earnest, we 
should seem to be in the very midst of it, and 
might suffer in various ways. The writer of this 
went with the troops when they marched to Au- 
gusta, and saw the militia from this section of the 
State reviewed by Gov. Fairfield, and participated 
in the excitement, the enthusiasm, and the anxiety 
which prevailed on all sides. Both the State gov- 
ernment and the soldiery were in earnest, and were 
determined not to submit to any injustice or wrong 
treatment. The thought of a posse invading our 
territory, seizing one of our citizens when in the 
discharge of his duty as a State official, and hurried 


away to prison beyond our jurisdiction, could not 
be endured. Whether it was the intention to res- 
cue the prisoner, and restore him to liberty in his 
native State, we do not know ; but there was a deep 
conviction that something must be done, and an 
earnest purpose to do it. 


When soldiers were called for in the War of the 
Rebellion, Turner responded with a good degree of 
promptness. As this is no place for recording the 
events connected with the war, nothing will be 
attempted except to give the names of those who 
filled the quotas required from time to time. It 
has been no easy task to make out a full list of 
names that is wholly free from errors. It is hoped 
that the list here presented is substantially correct. 
Numbers, after serving the time for which they 
enlisted, enlisted again, so that a full list of all the 
names will not represent the full number of soldiers 
for which the town received credit. The names of 
those who fell in battle or died of disease, are sim- 
ply recorded, as also the names of those who were 
promoted for faithful service or gallant conduct. 
Several men are not assigned to regiments. 




Francis M. Blossom. 
Sanford Conant. 
Luther K. Gary. 
Samuel F. Coffin. 
A. H. Davis. 
Henry Donham. 
Alvah N. Dexter. 
Charles Emerson. 
Alonzo Fuller. 
Horace J. Gilbert. 
Arad E. Gilbert. 
Charles Gilman. 
Samuel J. Gilman. 
Edwin W. Gould. 
George W. Harradon. 
James Jones. 
William W. Keen. 
Frank Kilgore. 
Albert Ladd. 
Orpheus M. Leonard. 
Lucius Libby. 
Thaddeus Leavitt. 
Charles E. Metcalf. 
Mellen Merrill. 
Billings J. Hood. 


Charles H. Piper. 
Davis O. Pollard. 
Samuel H. Powers. 
Edward Record. 
Nathaniel Spaulding. 
William H. Shaw. 
George E. Stone. 
Charles H. Thayer. 
John Werner. 
Roscoe A. Williams. 
Hiram Beal. 
James M. Gilbert. 
Luther C. Burgess. 
Everet G. Ford. 
Joseph W. Richardson. 
Stewart Holmes. 
George Anderson. 
Daniel Patterson. 
Charles E. Shirley. 
Edward Wilson. 
Thomas Roustin. 
Henry C. Drake. 
Isaac A. Tukey. 
Addis E. Luke. 

First Cavalry, 

Charles R. Delano. Seth H. Keene. 

George M. Delano. Laban Smith. 


District of Columbia Cavalry, 

John French. Dexter W. True. 

Thomas J. Owen. 

First Regiment Infantry, 
Robert C. Thayer. 

Sixth Regiment. 
Martin V. B. Gilmore. 

Seventh Regiment. 
Henry J. Ricker. Loren C. Records. 

Eighth Regiment, 

Franklin Bradford. Elisha Keen. 

Henry Calahan. Waldo B. Keen. 

Sylvester G. Delano. Thomas A. Kilgore. 

George E. Fales. Josiah Libby. 

Augustus Hayford. Cyrus E. Metcalf. 

Gad Hayford. Levi W. Metcalf. 

Samuel Holt. William W. Sampson. 

Abraham W. Jackson. Samuel E. Smith. 
Edward Shurtleff. 

Ninth Regiment, 
John Blake 2d. James B. Walker. 

Tenth Regiment, 

Ethan Allen. Moses Merrill. 

Gladden Bonney. John F. Quinby. 

Horace J. Coburn. Edward Rickards. 

Charles O. Fargo. Aaron A. Simonds. 

Charles M. Keen. Ezra F. Stephens. 
Henry Stirk. • 

Twelfth Regiment, 
Royal A. Bray. 



Thirteenth Regiment. 
Waldo A. Blossom. Wayne W. Blossom. 

Daniel F. Smith. 



Charles Walker. 



Seth H. Alden. 

Frank M. Merrill. 

Sidney A. Allen. 

Isaac J. Monk. 

William Bray. 

Sarson C. Pratt. 

Curtis V. Fales. 

George T. Piper. 

Freeman H. Farris. 

Thomas L. Roberts. 

George C. Hamond. 

Joseph W. Richardson. 

Otis Hood. 

William B. Staples. 

Calvin M. Haywood. 

Sampson A. Thomas. 

Orlando A. Jones. 

Jones Whitman. 

Archibald D. Leavitt. 

Columbus A. Whitney. 

Aubrey Leavitt. 

Charles P. Winship. 



Edward L. 

. Stevens. 

Twentieth Regiment, 
Henry C. Simmonds. 

Twenty-third Regiment. 

Jason L. Allen. 
John E. Ashe. 
Charles E. Bradford. 
Lewis P. Bradford. 
Leonard P. Bradford. 
Chandler B. Bailey. 
Benjamin F. Beals. 
John O. Bean. 
Mellen A. Bearce. 

Asa L. Berry. 
Charles Blake. 
William Bray. 
Philip Bray. 
Benjamin L. Briggs. 
Morrill E. Briggs. 
Samuel S. Butler. 
James Clark. 
James A. Cary. 



Howard Conant. 
Sanford Conant. 
Benjamin Cox. 
Jason Cutler. 
Thomas W. Davis. 
William H. Delano. 
Elbridge G. Francis. 
Edwin S. French. 
Hartwell S. French. 
Edwin E. Fuller. 
Lewis D. Hayford. 
Cyrus W. Hersey. 
George F. Holmes. 
Ronello B. Keen. 
Lorenzo D. Leavitt. 
John B. Woodman. 

Regiment — Contin tied. 

James McCorrison. 
Calvin McKenney. 
Marcellus S. Merrill. 
Shirley Merrill. 
Winslow Merrill. 
Seth Pickard Jr. 
Samuel T. Perry. 
Isaac Phillips. 
Edson Reckards. 
Philo C. Reckards. 
Justin K. Richardson. 
Ira A. Shurtleff. 
Edgar E. Swett. 
George C. Wheaton. 
James A. Whiting. 

Horace C. Haskell. 
Simeon C. Higgins. 
Seth D. Bradford. 
Chandler B. Bailey. 
Benjamin F. Beals. 
Asa L. Berry. 
Philemon A. Bradford. 
John C. Carver. 


Jason Cutler. 
James M. Fish. 
Oscar L. Johnson. 
Albert P. Leavitt. 
Justin K. Richardson. 
Jacob Keen Jr. 
Ronaldo B. Keen. 
William H. Washburne. 

Thirty-Hrst Regiment. 

Andrew J. Bryant. Fred J. Johnson. 

Hiram A. Conant. Oliver N. Leavitt. 

Cephas Fish. Alvora S. Pease. 

Albion Hood. Isaac Phillips. 

Daniel G. Harlow. Orison C. Phillips. 

Mellen N. Jones. George Sylvester. 


Thirty-second Regiment. 
James J. Chase. Francis Snell. 

Charles B. Chandler. James B. Walker. 

Judson Pratt. Charles E. Phillips. 

First Battalion Infantry, 

Royal A. Bray. Horace J. Gilbert. 

John E. Ashe. Samuel J. Gilman. 

William S. Alden. Frank Kilgore. 

Sanford Conant. Thaddeus Leavitt. 

Luther K. Cary. Lucius Libby. 

Algernon H. Davis. Orpheus M, Leonard. 

Henry Donham. Albert Ladd. 

Alvah N. Dexter. Mellen Merrill. 

Alonzo Fuller. Edward Shurtleff. 

Edwin S. French. Charles H. Thayer. 

Mounted Artillery, 
Roscoe A. Williams. Charles Emerson. 

First Regiment Veterans, 

Welcome Beals. Albert W. Hinds. 

George M. Delano. Joseph Jones. 
Davis N. Merrill. 

Third Regiment Veterans. 
Thomas J. Bryant. James L. Faden. 

William B. Bryant. Orville Young. 

Fifth Regiment Veterans, 
George W. Fargo. Albert W. Hines. 

Charles E. Jones. 

Several men procured substitutes, and their names do not 
appear in the above list. 



The valuation of the town, as shown by the 
assessor's books for the year 1886, is given below. 
Probably the full value of all taxable property is 
considerably in excess of the amount given, for the 
assessors would naturally choose to be on the safe 
side by fixing a valuation on all estates at less 
rather than above the prices at which they are held 
by the owners. 

The valuation of resident real estate is $502,360 
Valuation of non-resident real estate is 32,225 

Total valuation of real estate, ^534»S8s 

Valuation of resident personal estate is $143,801 
Valuation of non-resident personal estate is 377 

Total valuation of personal estate, $144,178 

Total valuation, $678,703 

Amount of tax, $12,015.71. Number of polls, 491. Rate per 
cent, .0163. 

There are about three hundred and fifty farms in 
town, varying in size from twelve to three hundred 
acres in each ; and their total value, with buildings, 
is about five hundred thousand dollars. 

The amount and value of stock is given below. 

Number of horses, 479, and their value, $29,630. Number of 
colts, 73, their value being $2,630. Number of oxen, 171, 
having a value of $9,318. Number of cows, 1,144, valued at 
$32,976. Number of cattle three years old is 238, having a 
value of $5,905. Number of two years old, 372, valued at 


$6,078. Number of yearlings, 396, valued at $2,890. The 
sheep number 989, with a valuation of $1,830. The swine 
number 258, valued at $1,585. The total value of live stock is 


It has been thought that a brief account of the 
doings of the town from year to year will show the 
progress that has been made, the changes that have 
been effected in public opinion, and the men who 
have been brought to the front by the judgment 
and voice of the citizens. The men who have been 
called to fill the most important offices in town for 
a series of years must have had the confidence 
of their fellow-citizens, and have been regarded as 
the most capable and trustworthy men in the com- 
munity. For this reason, the annals of the town 
have been compiled, hoping that they may not be 
without interest and profit to the reader. 

An act of incorporation was passed by the Gen- 
eral Court of Massachusetts, July 7, 1786, erecting 
the plantation of Sylvester-Canada into a town, but 
as the law of the State provided for the election of 
town officers only in the month of March or April, 
the first meeting could not be legally held until 
1787. By the act of incorporation, Isaac Parsons, 
Esq., of New Gloucester, was authorized to issue 
his warrant to some prominent citizen in the town, 
to call the first meeting, which he did as follows: — 



To Ichabod Bonney of the town of Turner^ in said County of 
Cumberland^ Gentleman : — 

You are hereby required in the name of the Commonwealth 
aforesaid, to notify and warn all the inhabitants of said Turner 
(qualified as the law directs) to meet and assemble together at 
the meeting-house in said town on Tuesday the sixth day of 
March next, at ten of the o'clock in the forenoon, to act on the 
following articles, viz.: first, to choose a moderator for said 
meeting ; second, to choose all town officers that are required 
by law to be chosen in the month of March or April. And 
make return of your doings herewith unto the moderator and 
clerk that shall be chosen at said meeting. 

Given under my hand and seal at New Gloucester, the first 
day of February, Anno Domini 1787. 

Isaac Parsons, Justice Peace, 


Turner, March 6, 1787. 

Agreeable to the above warrant, I have warned the inhabi- 
tants of said town to meet at the time and place above said, 
and to act and do agreeable to the above warrant. 

To Doctor Daniel Child, moderator; and Mr. Benjamin True, 

town clerk. 

Ichabod Bonney. 

In accordance with this warrant, the first town 
meeting was held at the time and place designated. 
Dr. Daniel Child was chosen moderator; Benjamin 
True, town clerk ; and Capt. Ichabod Bonney, Ben- 
jamin True, and Israel Haskell, selectmen and 
assessors. John Allen was chosen collector, and 
was to receive fourpence on the pound for collect- 


ing the taxes. Samuel Blake was chosen treasurer; 
Moses Stephens, Jeremiah Dillingham, Stephen 
Bryant, and Capt. Henry Jones, surveyors of high- 
ways ; and Stephen Bryant and Israel Haskell, 
" wardians." 

The officers required by law having been chosen, 
no other business was transacted, for the reason 
probably, that it was not deemed legal to transact 
any other business under the call for said meeting. 
Another meeting was called at once to be held 
March 27, 1787, at which important matters came 
up for consideration. In August, 1784, a vote had 
been passed in town-meeting to invite Rev. John 
Strickland to be the minister of the town at an 
annual salary of fifty pounds. They had also 
adopted, by popular vote, a plan of church govern- 
ment, and had transacted other business, which 
now seems proper to a religious society alone. 
The votes passed in 1 784 were now reaffirmed, that 
they might be legal and binding on the people. 
The first vote was that " The Church and Congre- 
gation of Sylvester Plantation, taking into consid- 
eration the great importance of having the stated 
means of grace settled in the place, and having 
heard the Rev. John Strickland, a member of 
Salem Presbytery, sometime ; and being satisfied 
with his principles in Doctrine and Discipline and 
ministerial gifts and moral character, do make 
choice of him, the said John Strickland, as our 


minister, and do appoint Messrs. Richard Phillips, 
John Keen, and Benjamin True, to attend the 
Presbytery at their next session at the town of 
Gray, to solicit this our call before the Presbytery, 
the same having been unanimously voted at a meet- 
ing held for that purpose on August 12th day of 
this instant August, the same being again proposed 
to the Church and Congregation was unanimously 

As the vote formerly passed to pay Mr. Strick- 
land fifty pounds was not considered legal, several 
of the citizens had given him a bond to that 
amount to make his pay secure. The town now 
released those men by assuming the obligation. 
Certain men had also advanced twelve pounds to 
defray the expense of Mr. Strickland's installation. 
The town voted to refund this money. After 
voting a salary of fifty pounds a year, they voted 
seventy-five pounds, " lawful money, " for his salary 
for three years. This is explained by the fact that 
the proprietors agreed to pay a portion of his salary 
for that length of time. The town also voted to 
give him the use of " the common land five years 
rent free, " and " that he have a reasonable time to 
visit his friends to the westward annually." 

Twenty-two pounds were also raised " to defray 
the charges of the Beef Execution;" and twelve 
shillings to each of the selectmen for their services. 


Nothing was done for schools, nor for other 
objects such, as now claim attention. But it was 
voted that " Mr. Daniel French, and his family 
while under him, be exempted from paying the 
minister tax." Why he should be exempted, and 
the same favor be denied to another, it does not 


Captain Ichabod Bonney was chosen moderator; 
Benjamin True, clerk; Benjamin True, Samuel 
Blake, and Henry Jones, selectmen and assessors ; 
and Samuel Blake, treasurer. Samuel Andrews was 
chosen sealer of weights and measures; William 
Bradford, tithing-man; Joseph Leavitt and Levi 
Merrill, "wardians"; Stephen Bryant and Jeremiah 
Dillingham, hog-reeves; Daniel Russell, deer-reeve; 
Seth Staples, fence-viewer; Andrew Eliot, clerk of 
the market; Abner Phillips, sealer of leather; Moses 
Stephens, keeper of the pound; Captain Henry 
Jones, Richard Phillips, Moses Stephens, and Ste- 
phen Bryant, surveyors of highways; and Nathan 
Niles, collector at eightpence on the pound. The 
selectmen were voted twenty-four shillings each for 
their services ; and Stephen Bryant twenty-four shil- 
lings "for his carrying Lois Layden to the town of 
Pownalborough in the County of Lincoln." William 
Bradford, Daniel Briggs, and Samuel Andrews were 


chosen a committee to lease out thirty acres on each 
end of the parsonage lot, No. 5 1 ; the lot on which 
William Whitman now resides. This year, the road 
was established from the center of the town through 
the Lower Street, two rods wide; also, the road 
from the meeting-house to the Lower Street school- 
house; the road down the Gary Hill to Blake's 
Mill; and the road leading from the Upper to the 
Lower Street by Nelson Jones'. Fifty pounds were 
raised for roads, and twelve pounds were raised to 
be laid out on school lot for support of a school,, 
though how anything was to be realized for the 
support of a school, does not appear. Thirty-three 
pounds were voted for Mr. Strickland's salary. It 
was voted to pay men three shillings a day for 
work on the road ; two shillings and sixpence for 
a yoke of oxen, eightpence for a cart, and eight- 
pence for a plow. It was voted that Mr. Strick- 
land's salary should be paid in silver at six shillings 
and eightpence per ounce, to be reckoned from his 
installation. Action was taken on several roads, 
and a committee was raised to petition "the gen- 
eral session of the peace for and within the County 
of Cumberland" for a road through this town to 
New Gloucester. At a meeting held on October 
5, 1788, votes were thrown for County Register. 
Stephen Waite had seven votes, and Enoch Free^- 
man one. 



Dr. Daniel Child was chosen moderator; Ben- 
jamin True, town clerk; William Bradford, Sam- 
uel Blake, and Captain Henry Jones, selectmen 
and assessors; Mark Andrews, collector, at three- 
pence-half-penny on the pound for collecting; and 
Samuel Blake, treasurer. One hundred pounds 
were raised, to be expended in labor on the roads ; 
the selectmen were voted eighteen shillings each 
for their services; thirty pounds were raised to 
support a school the ensuing year; and forty 
pounds to build three school-houses. At a meeting 
held the sixth day of April, John Hancock received 
sixteen votes for Governor; for Lieutenant-Governor, 
Benjamin Lincoln received thirteen votes, and Sam- 
uel Adams, Esq., three; and John Lewis, nine votes 
for Senator. It was voted not to exempt Hezekiah 
Bryant and Andrew Eliot from paying the minister 


Captain Ichabod Bonney was chosen moderator; 
Benjamin True, town clerk; Samuel Andrews, 
Nathan Niles, and Benjamin True, selectmen; and 
Stephen Bryant, town treasurer. Jesse Bradford 
collected the taxes for sixpence on the pound. 
Jacob Leavitt was chosen clerk of the market. 
There is no intimation of his duties. Twenty 


pounds were raised for schools. It was voted that 
the proprietors of the Forge clear ten acres a year 
on the school lot, and sow to grass, and so each 
year, till fifty acres are cleared and in grass, for 
which the proprietors were to receive the two first 
crops. Voted not to open the meeting-house. In 
June, a committee was raised to petition the Gen- 
eral Court to make and repair the county road from 
this town to New Gloucester. The town would not 
release those men from paying the minister tax 
who had certificates that they "attend on the Bap- 
tist preaching." The article to see if the town 
would choose a committee to prosecute the select- 
men for clearing Hezekiah Bryant and Andrew 
EHot from the minister tax for 1789, was passed. 
Fifty pounds were raised for Mr. Strickland's sal- 
ary. A county road was provided for from Israel 
Haskel's to the county road at the south part of the 
town, but the town was not ready to extend the 
road to Livermore. The article to see if none 
shall be required to pay the minister tax without 
their consent, was passed, and also the article to see 
if the town will allow the selectmen to give orders 
to the Baptists on the town treasurer for the minis- 
ter tax. 

In January, votes were thrown for a Representa- 
tive to represent the counties of York, Cumberland, 
Lincoln, Hancock, and Washington, in the Con- 


gress of the United States. Hon. George Thatcher 
received ten votes. 


Captain Henry Jones was chosen moderator; 
Ichabod Bonney, town clerk; Ichabod Bonney, 
Samuel Andrews, and Samuel Blake, selectmen; 
and William Bradford, treasurer. Jesse Bradford 
collected the taxes for eightpence on the pound. 
The selectmen were allowed sixteen shillings each 
for their services. Eighteen pounds were raised 
for the support of a school. It was voted not to 
raise fifty pounds for Mr. Strickland's salary. 

Votes for Representative to the General Court of 
the Commonwealth of Massachusetts were thrown 
as follows: — 

For William Lithgow, Esq., eighteen. 

For George Thatcher, Esq., two. 

For Governor, John Hancock had eighteen votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Thomas Russell had 
fifteen votes. 

For Senator, William Wedgry, Esq., eighteen 

At a special meeting held in June, it was voted 
to raise fifty pounds for Mr. Strickland's salary; 
but at an adjourned meeting the vote was recon- 
sidered. Samuel Andrews, William Hayford, Dan- 
iel Child, William Bradford, and Nathan Niles 


were chosen a committee to consult with Mr. 
Strickland relative to a dismission, and to the dif- 
ferences in regard to his salary. 


Captain Henry Jones was chosen moderator; Ich- 
abod Bonney, town clerk; Ichabod Bonney, Sam- 
uel Blake, and Samuel Andrews, selectmen; and 
William Bradford, treasurer. Voted not to raise Mr. 
Strickland's salary for the past or present year. A 
committee was chosen to " treat " with Mr. Strick- 
land relative to a dismission. Seventy-five pounds 
were voted for repair of highways; and twenty 
pounds for a school. Each of the assessors were 
voted twenty-four shillings for their services ; the 
treasurer, twelve shillings ; and Dr. Child, two shil- 
lings, the amount of his bill against the town. 

This year, John Hancock had thirty-four votes 
for Governor. 

Samuel Adams, thirty votes for Lieutenant- 

David Mitchell, six votes for Senator. 

William Wedgry, one vote for Senator. 

In October of this year, votes were cast for Rep- 
resentatives with the following result : — 

For the County of Cumberland — Peleg Wads- 
worth, Esq., six votes ; William Wedgry, Esq., two 


County of York — George Thatcher, Esq., eight 
votes ; Nathaniel Wells, Esq., one vote. 

Counties of Lincoln, Hancock, and Washington 
— William Lithgow, Esq., eight votes ; Daniel 
Coney, Esq., one vote. 

For Electors — Samuel Freeman, Esq., two votes; 
John Frothingham, Esq., two votes ; Thomas Rice, 
Esq., one vote ; Daniel Coney, Esq., eight votes ; 
Edward Cutts, Esq., nine votes. 

William Hayford was moderator; Ichabod Bon- 
ney, town clerk ; Ichabod Bonney, Samuel Blake, 
and Samuel Andrews were selectmen and asses- 
sors ; and William Bradford, treasurer. A commit- 
tee was raised to build a school-house on the Lower 
Street, and ten pounds raised for the purpose. 
Seventy-five pounds were voted for repair of high- 
ways, and twenty-four pounds for the support of a 

Dr. Daniel Child was chosen moderator ; Ichabod 
Bonney, clerk ; Ichabod Bonney, Samuel Blake, and 
Caleb House, selectmen ; William Bradford, treas- 
urer; and Nathan Niles, Samuel Gorham, and 
Richard Phillips, surveyors of highways. Beniah 
Niles, Seth Staples, and Jabez Merrill were 


chosen a school committee. This committee, it is 
presumed, performed the duties of school agents 
and supervisors. Twenty pounds, or about sixty- 
seven dollars, were raised for support of schools. 
Voted one hundred pounds for building two bridges 
over the Twenty Mile River, and repair of high- 
ways, one bridge above Blake's dam, and the other 
at " Mr. True s waiding place." Mr. Strickland's 
salary was not voted. 

At a special meeting called in February, 1794, 
to see if the town would raise Mr. Strickland's sal- 
ary for 1 791, 1792, and a part of 1793, it was voted 
to dissolve the meeting. 

In November, the votes thrown for Representa- 
tives in Congress were as follows : — 

Peleg Wads worth, Esq., thirteen votes. 

William Wedgry, Esq., thirteen votes. 

At a meeting held December 25th, Ichabod Bon- 
ney was chosen a committee to procure " a stock of 
powder, balls, and flints," as required by law. For 
many years, a quantity of ammunition was kept in 
readiness for any emergency, in a small brick build- 
ing called a powder-house. 

At a special meeting held April 5th, votes were 
thrown as follows : — 

For Governor, Samuel Adams, thirty-two votes. 


For Lieutenant-Governor, Moses Gill, forty-two 

For Senators, David Michel, sixteen votes ; Wil- 
liam Wedgry, seventeen votes; Stephen Longfellow, 
fourteen votes ; Charles Turner, twenty-seven votes. 

On the next day. Dr. Daniel Child was elected 
moderator ; Ichabod Bonney, town clerk ; Ichabod 
Bonney, Samuel Blake, and Beniah Niles, select- 
men ; and William Bradford, treasurer. It was 
voted to "lease out the commons," meaning the 
school lands, and including, perhaps, the ministerial 
lots. Twenty-two pounds were raised for support 
of schools, and seventy-five pounds for repair of 
highways. Beniah Niles was engaged to build a 
pound near the meeting-house, for four pounds and 
ten shillings. The use of the commons was sold 
to John Loring for five years, at two pounds, six- 
teen shillings a year. On the sixth of May, a 
special meeting was called, at which twenty-seven 
votes were cast for a revision of the constitution. 


Dr. Daniel Child was moderator; Ichabod Bon- 
ney, town clerk; Ichabod Bonney, John Turner, 
and Chandler Bradford, selectmen; and William 
Bradford, treasurer. Voted one hundred dollars 
for the support of a school, the first time Federal 


money appears in the town records. One hundred 
and twenty pounds were raised for repair of high- 
ways. The selectmen were directed to lay out a 
road from John Turner's to Livermore line, and 
between the lots owned by Benjamin Jones and 
Richard Phillips Jr., to the great river, to accom- 
modate Elijah Gilbert. A portion of school lot 
No. 99 was leased for five years. 

At the Governor meeting held in April, the fol- 
lowing votes were thrown : — 

For Governor, Samuel Adams, twenty-nine votes ; 
Increase Sumner, three votes. 

For Lieutentant-Governor, Moses Gill, twenty- 
eight votes. 

For Senators, Stephen Longfellow, twenty-eight 
votes ; Charles Turner, twenty-five votes ; Stephen 
Bryant, one vote. 

There were at this time four school districts in 
town: first, the Upper Street from the meeting- 
house south ; second, the Upper Street from the 
meeting-house north, including the Center and Eli- 
jah Gilbert's ; third, the Lower Street and Blake's ; 
fourth, Snell's Hill and all to the west of it. Dan- 
iel Briggs, Jesse Bradford, William Bradford, and 
Moses Snell were chosen a school committee. It 
was also voted to accept of John Sole, of Pembroke, 
in the county of Plymouth, to be an inhabitant of 
the town of Turner. 



Dr. Daniel Child was chosen moderator ; Ichabod 
Bonney, town clerk; Ichabod Bonney, John Turner, 
and Chandler Bradford, selectmen ; and William 
Bradford, treasurer. Thirty-six pounds were voted 
for schools, and John Loring, Jabez Merrill, Wil- 
liam Bradford, and John Bonney, school committee. 
One hundred and fifty pounds were raised for 
repair of highways. 

Votes for Governor, Increase Sumner, forty-two 

Lieutenant-Governor, Moses Gill, forty-two votes. 

Senators, Stephen Longfellow, thirty-three votes ; 
Daniel Davis, thirty-six votes. 


Dr. Daniel Child was elected moderator; Ichabod 
Bonney, town clerk; Ichabod Bonney, John Turner, 
and Chandler Bradford, selectmen. One hundred 
and twenty dollars were voted for schools, and five 
hundred dollars for repair of highways. 

In November there was an election of Represen- 
tatives to Congress, at which Peleg Wadsworth, 
Esq., received seventeen votes, and Charles Turner 

Increase Sumner received forty-two votes for 
Governor, and Moses Gill forty votes for Lieuten- 


For Senators, Stephen Longfellow received twen- 
ty-two votes, and Daniel Davis thirty votes. 


Nathaniel Sawtelle was chosen moderator; Ich- 
abod Bonney, town clerk ; Ichabod Bonney, John 
Turner, and Chandler Bradford, selectmen ; and 
William Bradford, treasurer. Benjamin Evans, 
Hezekiah Bryant, Jabez Merrill, and Job Randal 
were elected school committee. One hundred and 
twenty dollars were raised for schools, and six hun- 
dred and fifty dollars for repair of highways. Wil- 
liam Bradford collected the taxes for one shilling 
on the pound. 

This year, a committee, consisting of Dr. Luther 
Cary, William Bradford, and Ichabod Bonney, was 
chosen to. petition the General Court for leave to 
sell the lands belonging to the town. 


Nathaniel Sawtelle was elected moderator; Ich- 
abod Bonney, town clerk ; William Bradford, treas- 
urer; and Ichabod Bonney, John Turner, and 
Chandler Bradford, selectmen. Chandler Bradford, 
Richard Phillips Jr., Luther Cary, and William 
Loring Jr. were chosen school committee. Two 
hundred dollars were voted for schools, and one 
thousand dollars for highways. It was voted to 


build a school-house in the west district. Roads 
were laid out each year for the accommodation of 
the settlers, but it is not easy in every instance to 
determine their location. 

In April, the vote for State officers was as 
follows : — 

For Governor, Caleb Strong, Esq., forty-six votes ; 
Moses Gill, Esq., two votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Moses Gill, Esq., forty- 
eight votes. 

For Senators, Daniel Davis, Esq., twenty-one 
votes ; Stephen Longfellow, twenty-one votes. 

In November, Peleg Wadsworth received thir- 
teen votes for Representative to Congress. 

Daniel Briggs, William Bradford, and Joseph 
Copeland were chosen a committee to repair the 
meeting-house. Two hundred dollars were raised 
to supply the town with preaching, in accordance 
with a late law of the State, and a committee was 
chosen to procure a preacher. A committee was 
also chosen to care for the parsonage and school 
lands, and to prosecute trespassers. 


At a meeting called for the purpose, votes were 
thrown for State officers, as follows : — 

For Governor, Caleb Strong, Esq., forty-one 
votes ; Elbridge Gerry, Esq., twenty-five votes. 


For Lieutenant-Governor, Samuel Phillips, Esq., 
thirty-eight votes ; William Heath, Esq., twenty-one 
votes ; Daniel Islley, Esq., one vote ; John Gushing, 
Esq., one vote ; Galeb Blake, one vote. 

For Senators, Stephen Longfellow, forty-eight 
votes ; Luther Gary, twenty-eight votes ; Mr. Wood- 
bury, twenty votes ; Daniel Islley, eight votes ; John 
Gushing, eleven votes ; John K. Smith, two votes. 

For Gounty Register, Daniel Islley, Esq., twen- 
ty-five votes. 

At the annual meeting, Luther Gary was chosen 
moderator ; Ichbod Bonney, town clerk ; Ichabod 
Bonney, John Turner, and Ghandler Bradford, 
selectmen; and William Bradford, treasurer. Dr. 
Luther Gary, Rev. John Strickland, Jabez Merrill, 
and Daniel Tuttle were chosen school committee. 
Three hundred dollars were raised for schools, and 
one thousand dollars for highways ; and certain 
roads were accepted. 


Nathaniel Sawtelle was elected moderator ; Ich- 
abod Bonney, town clerk ; Ichabod Bonney, Benja- 
min Evans, and Nathaniel Sawtelle, selectmen ; and 
William Bradford, treasurer. Ghandler Bradford, 
Joseph Ludden, Joseph Bonney, and Daniel Tuttle 
were chosen school committee. Three hundred 
and fifty dollars were raised for schools, and one 


thousand dollars for highways. Five shillings a 
day were allowed on the highways in June and 
July, and four shillings in the autumn. 

At a meeting for the election of officers, held in 
April, votes were thrown as follows: — 

For Governor, Caleb Strong, Esq., fifty-two votes ; 
Elbridge Gerry, Esq., thirty-six votes ; Joseph Leav- 
itt, two votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Edward H. Rolins, 
forty-six votes ; William Heath, thirty votes ; Sam- 
uel Pumpelly, one vote. 

For Senators, Mr. Woodbury, thirty-nine votes ; 
John Gushing, Esq., thirty-nine votes ; Luther Gary, 
Esq., seven votes ; Samuel P. Russell, Esq., six 

A committee was again raised to petition the 
General Gourt for leave to sell the parsonage and 
school lands. A committee was raised to divide 
the town into school districts, and a road was 
accepted to Livermore line, beginning on a line 
between Nathaniel Sawtelle Jr.'s and John Soul's. 
Sixty dollars were raised for repairing the meeting- 
house. Four hundred dollars were raised to build 
a bridge over Twenty Mile River, and it was voted 
to pay seventy-five cents a day for labor. Peleg 
Wadsworth received eleven votes for Representa- 
tive to Gongress. 



At a meeting held January 24, Daniel Howard, 
Esq., was chosen " to appear at the Court of Gen- 
eral Sessions to be holden at Portland in the 
County of Cumberland on the third Tuesday of 
February next to answer in behalf of said town for 
not being provided with a public Teacher of Piety, 
Religion, and Morality." 

At a meeting held in April, State officers were 
voted for as follows : — 

For Governor, Caleb Strong, Esq., sixty-three 
votes ; Elbridge Gerry, Esq., eight votes ; Joseph 
Ludden, one vote; Edward Blake, one vote. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Edward H. Robbins, 
forty votes ; David Cobb, one vote ; William Heath, 
two votes ; Luther Cary, one vote. 

For Senators, Woodbury Storer, thirty-eight 
votes; John Gushing, thirty-six votes; Ezekiel 
Whitman, one vote. 

At the annual meeting, William Turner was 
chosen moderator; Benjamin Evans, town clerk; 
Benjamin Evans, Ichabod Bonney, and John Turn- 
er, selectmen; and William Bradford, treasurer. 
Four hundred dollars were raised for schools, and 
one thousand dollars for highways. It was voted to 
sell the school-houses. The school districts had now 
increased to seven. The first embraced the Upper 
Street and the river road as far north as the meet- 


ing-house ; the second, the river road to the Twenty 
Mile River, and westward to the meadow brook ; 
the third, the whole north part of the town ; the 
fourth, the northwesterly part of the town, includ- 
ing Chase's Mills ; the fifth, the middle portion of 
the western part of the town ; the sixth, the south- 
westerly part of the town ; the seventh, the central 

At a meeting held in May, the town voted unan- 
imously to settle the Rev. Charles Turner, on the 
condition that the pastoral relations may be dis- 
solved at the option of either of the contracting 
parties ; that he will preach for four dollars and fifty 
cents a week ; and that the church will give him a 
call. Two hundred dollars were voted for the sup- 
port of preaching, and a committee was chosen to 
inquire into the standing of the church, and to 
make such inquiries relative to church discipline as 
they shall think necessary. The church insisted 
on settling Mr. Strickland, and the town in settling 
Mr. Turner, hence no one was employed. At 
length. Rev. Amasa Smjth came, and giving gen- 
eral satisfaction, the town voted in September, 
twenty-four to fifteen, to give him a call. Accord- 
ingly, he became the minister of the parish, which 
was the town, and two hundred and fifty dollars 
were raised for his yearly support. 

At a meeting held December 19, the town chose 


John Loring a delegate to meet a convention of 
delegates on Paris Hill, to take action in reference 
to forming a new county. 


Votes for State officers were as follows : — 

For Governor, James Sullivan, Esq., sixty-four 
votes ; Caleb Strong, Esq., twenty-eight votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, William Heath, Esq., 
fifty-eight votes ; William H. Rolins, Esq., twenty- 
three votes. 

For Senators, Isaac Parsons, Esq., thirty-three 
votes ; Woodbury Storer, twenty-three votes : Dan- 
iel Ilsley, thirty-one votes ; John Gushing, twenty- 
one votes. 

At the annual meeting in March, Ichabod Bon- 
ney was chosen moderator; Joseph Bonney, town 
clerk ; Ichabod Bonney, John Turner, and Chandler 
Bradford, selectmen ; and William Bradford, treas- 
urer. Voted four hundred and fifty dollars for 
schools, one thousand five hundred dollars for 
highways, and three hundred and fifty dollars to 
pay debts. Voted to set off the north part of 
Turner to the three spotted line, to the south part 
of Livermore, and annex it thereto. Members of 
the Universalist Society, who had paid the minister 
tax for the preceding year, were allowed to draw 
back the same. 


Votes for Register of Deeds were, for Thomas 
B. Wait, eighteen ; Isaac Adams, nine ; Joseph C. 
Boyd, eleven ; and Isaac Gage, sixteen. 

Votes for Representatives to the General Court 
were, for William Wedgry, Esq., thirty-seven ; Peleg 
Wadsworth, Esq., nine ; Isaac Parsons, Esq., one. 

For the first time, the town voted this year for 
Electors of President and Vice-president. The 
number was nineteen. It was also voted expedient 
to form a new county, and to petition the General 
Court therefor. 


All the inhabitants of the town, twenty-one years 
of age, having a freehold estate of the annual 
income of three pounds, or any estate of the value 
of sixty pounds, were notified to meet on the first 
day of April, to give in their votes for Governor 
and Lieutenant-Governor. 

For Governor, Hon. James Sulivan, ninety votes; 
Hon. Caleb Strong, twenty-nine votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, William Heath, Esq., 
eighty-nine votes ; Edward H. Rollins, Esq., twenty- 
four votes. 

For Senators, Daniel Ilsley, seventy-nine votes; 
Isaac Parsons, eighty-five votes; John Gushing, 
twenty-four votes ; Woodbury Storer, twenty-four 
votes ; Charles Turner, six votes. 


At the annual town-meeting, Ichabod Bonney 
was chosen moderator; Joseph Bonney, town clerk; 
Ichabod Bonney, John Turner, and Chandler Brad- 
ford, selectmen; and William Bradford, treasurer. 
Voted to grant the Universalist Society the use of 
the meeting-house a portion of the time. There 
were raised for schools, four hundred and fifty dol- 
lars ; and for highways, two thousand dollars. 

At a call which assembled the men who had the 
legal freehold qualifications, votes were given for 
Representatives to the General Court, as follows: — 

John Turner, Esq., seventy-one votes; Ichabod 
Bonney, Esq., one vote. 

On August 12, the town voted for County Reg- 
ister as follows: — 

For Sturtevant, Esq., eighteen votes; Joseph 
Rust, six votes; Eleazar Hamlin, seven votes; 
Joseph Blake, twenty-five votes ; John Strickland, 
sixteen votes ; Arthur Bradman, six votes ; Henry 
Printis, one vote ; Isaac Livermore, one vote. 

An agent was chosen in December to remon- 
strate against Fryeburg being made a half shire. 


Benjamin Chamberlain was chosen moderator; 
Joseph Bonney, town clerk ; Ichabod Bonney, John 
Turner, and Chandler Bradford, selectmen; and 
William Bradford, treasurer. A committee was 


chosen for each school district, but the sole duty 
seems to have been that of agents. It does not 
appear that there was or had been any supervision 
of the schools. Voted four hundred dollars for 
schools, and one thousand dollars for highways, and 
to pay the town debts, two hundred dollars. 

The votes for County Register were, for Joseph 
Rust, ninety-four ; for Eleazar Hamlin, seventeen. 

On April 7, they who had the legal freehold 
qualifications voted for State officers. 

For Governor, Hon. James Sullivan received one 
hundred and sixteen votes; Hon. Caleb Strong, 
twenty-three votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William Heath, 
one hundred and sixteen votes ; Hon. Edward H. 
Rollins, fifteen votes. 

For Senators, Maj. Daniel Ilsley, one hundred 
and nine votes; Col. Levi Hubbard, one hundred 
and nine votes ; John Gushing, fifteen votes ; Hon. 
Woodbury Storer, fifteen votes. 

For County Treasurer, Levi Hubbard, forty-eight 

On the fifth of May, the property holders voted 
for Representatives to the General Court. John 
Turner, Esq., had forty votes, and Jesse Bradford 
one. The roads were constantly receiving atten- 
tion ; a new road, or some change in an old one, 
being frequently asked for. 


November 3, the freeholders cast their votes for 
Representatives to Congress. Hon. Daniel Ilsley 
had seventy-two votes ; Ezekiel Whitman, fifteen. 


Benjamin Chamberlain was chosen moderator; 
Joseph Bonney, town clerk; John Turner, Chandler 
Bradford, and George French, selectmen; David 
Talbot, treasurer. Raised five hundred dollars for 
schools, and one thousand seven hundred for high- 
ways; seven hundred dollars of it for the county 
road from the bridge to Livermore line. 

April 6, the freeholders cast their votes for State 

For Governor, Hon. James Sullivan had one 
hundred and seventeen votes; His Excellency, 
Caleb Strong, had twenty-seven votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. Levi Lincoln 
had one hundred and seventeen votes; Hon. Ed- 
ward H. Rollins had twenty-six votes. 

For Senators, Hon. Levi Hubbard had one hun- 
dred and seventeen votes; Capt. James Means had 
one hundred and seventeen votes ; Lothrop Lewis, 
Esq., had twenty-two votes; Hon. Luther Cary had 
twenty-one votes ; and Hon. Woodbury Storer had 
one vote. 

On the question of making Maine a separate 
State, the yeas were sixty-six, and the nays thirty- 


For County Treasurer, Levi Hubbard, Esq., re- 
ceived fifty-seven votes. 

On May 11, all male persons twenty-one years of 
age, and owning a freehold worth sixty pounds, 
were warned to meet and cast their votes for Rep- 
resentative to the General Court. John Turner, 
Esq., had fifty-five votes ; William Bradford had one 
vote. This year the River Road was laid out. 


Dea..Ezra Cary was chosen moderator; Joseph 
Bonney, town clerk ; John Turner, Joseph Bonney, 
and Benjamin Chamberlain, selectmen ; and Benja- 
min Chamberlain, treasurer. Voted three hundred 
dollars for schools, and one thousand five hundred 
dollars for highways. The old road from Meadow 
Brook Bridge to Moses Snell's was discontinued, 
and a new one accepted. The road from Mr. John 
Bonney 's to Minot line was established. 

On April 4, the male inhabitants, twent)^-one 
years of age, having a freehold estate of the annual 
income of ten dollars, or any estate to the value of 
two hundred dollars, cast their votes for State 

For Governor, His Excellency, James Sullivan, 
received one hundred and twenty-six votes ; Hon. 
Christopher Gore, twenty-one votes ; and Hon. Levi 
Lincoln, one vote. 


For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. Levi Lincoln 
had one hundred and twenty-two votes; Hon. 
David Cobb had twenty votes. 

For Senators, Hon. Levi Hubbard received one 
hundred and twenty-four votes ; Hon. James Means, 
one hundred and twenty-four votes ; Lothrop Lewis, 
Esq., twenty votes ; Ammi R. Mitchell, Esq., twenty 

For County Treasurer, Hon. Levi Hubbard 
received thirty-nine votes. 

The property holders on May 2, gave in their 
votes for Representative to the General Court. 
For John Turner, Esq., forty-seven votes ; for Isaac 
Root, Esq., thirty-one votes ; for Joseph Copeland, 
one vote. 

This year, a school district was established, em- 
bracing the inhabitants on the River Road from 
Elijah Gilbert's to Hanover Keen's. 

On November 7, the property holders gave in 
their votes for Representative to Congress for 
Cumberland County, as follows : for Daniel Ilsley, 
Esq., one hundred and thirty-seven votes; for Ezek- 
iel Whitman, Esq., nineteen votes. 


Dea. Ezra Cary was chosen moderator; Joseph 
Bonney, town clerk ; John Turner, Joseph Bonney, 
and Benjamin Chamberlain, selectmen ; and Benja- 


min Chamberlain, treasurer. Voted fifteen hun- 
dred dollars for highways ; one hundred dollars for 
schools, in addition to the school fund ; and one 
hundred dollars for town debts. A road was 
accepted, running from a pine stump near Caleb 
Lombard's to Blake's Mill, and also one leading up 
by Pickerel Pond to the Hartford Road. 

The male inhabitants worth sixty pounds voted 
for officers, as follows : — 

For Governor, Hon. Levi Lincoln received one 
hundred and thirty-seven votes ; Hon. Christopher 
Gore, twenty-five votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. Joseph Varnum 
received one hundred and forty votes ; Hon. David 
Cobb, twenty-seven votes ; Benjamin Evans, one 

For Senators, Hon. Levi Hubbard, one hundred 
and forty-five votes ; Hon. James Means, one hun- 
dred and forty-five votes; Hon. Lothrop Lewis, 
twenty-seven votes ; Hon. Ammi R. Mitchell, twen- 
ty-seven votes. 

For County Treasurer, Hon. Levi Hubbard, one 
hundred votes. 

On May 8, they voted again for Representative 
to the General Court, as follows : for John Turner, 
Esq., thirty-nine votes ; for Isaac Root, Esq., twenty- 
six votes ; for William Bradford, one vote. 



Dea. Ezra Cary was elected moderator ; Joseph 
Bonney, town clerk; William Bradford, Daniel 
Cary, and George French, selectmen ; and Joseph 
Bonney, treasurer. Voted three hundred dollars 
for schools, and that the school fund be appropri- 
ated for the district schools as last year. Voted 
seventeen cents bounty for every crow killed within 
the limits of the town. Elisha Pratt engaged to 
build a bridge over Twenty Mile River, near its 
mouth, for one hundred and forty-nine dollars. 
Voted fifteen hundred dollars for highways. 

The male freeholders, April 2, cast their votes 
for officers, as follows : — 

For Governor, Hon. Elbridge Gerry, one hundred 
and thirty-eight votes ; His Excellency, Christopher 
Gore, twenty-seven votes ; Oliver Turner, one vote. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. WilHam Gray, 
one hundred and thirty-nine votes; Hon. David 
Cobb, twenty-six votes ; Hon. Elbridge Gerry, one 
vote ; Hon. Elbridge Cary, one vote. 

For Senators, Hon. Levi Hubbard, one hundred 
and forty votes ; Hon. James Means, one hundred 
and forty votes ; Hon. Lothrop Lewis, twenty-seven 
votes ; Hon. Luther Cary, twenty-six votes ; Hon. 
Ammi R. Mitchell, one vote. 

For County Treasurer, Capt. Henry Rust, one 
hundred and seven votes. 


May 7, all legal residents of the town, having an 
estate of an annual income of ten dollars, or any 
estate valued at two hundred dollars, were notified 
to meet for the election of a Representative to the 
General Court, in Boston. Votes were cast, for 
George French, forty-eight; for Daniel Gary, Esq., 
twenty ; for Martin Leonard, two ; for William 
Bradford, two ; and for John Turner, Esq., three. 

In November, the vote for Representative to 
Congress was, for Hon. William Widgery, ninety- 
one ; for John Turner, Esq., three ; for Joseph E. 
Foxcroft, Esq., one. 

181 1 

Ezra Cary was chosen moderator ; Joseph Bon- 
ney, town clerk ; John Turner, George French, and 
Jesse Bradford, selectmen ; and Joseph Bonney, 
treasurer. Chose a school committee of three. Dr. 
Luther Cary, Dr. Timothy Howe, and John Turner, 
Esq., instead of one for each district as heretofore. 
It is probable that this committee were charged 
with the supervision of the schools, since the sev- 
eral districts were recommended to choose agents 
for the conduct of " their own affairs." For schools 
three hundred dollars were raised, and for high- 
ways, one thousand five hundred dollars. One 
thousand nine hundred dollars were raised to de- 
fray the expenses of the town for the current year. 


The selectmen were paid nine dollars each for their 
services ; and Joseph Bonney, who was both town 
clerk and treasurer, received ten dollars. 

Joseph Rust, Esq., received seventy-nine votes 
for County Register, and Alanson Mellen one vote. 

A special meeting was called the eighteenth day 
of March, at which it was voted to indemnify the 
trustees of the school fund for paying out the inter- 
est of said fund for the support of English schools. 

On April i, votes were cast as follows : — 

For Governor, His Excellency, Elbridge Gerry, 
one hundred and thirty-seven votes; for Christo- 
pher Gore, sixteen votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, His Honor, William 
Gray, one hundred and twenty-two votes ; William 
Phillips, Esq., fifteen votes; His Excellency, El- 
bridge Gerry, one vote ; Hon. William Heath, one 

For Representative to Congress, Hon. Levi Hub- 
bard, one hundred and twenty-four votes ; Hon. 
James Means, one hundred and twenty-four votes ; 
Hon. Lothrop Lewis, fifteen votes ; Hon. Luther 
Cary, fourteen votes ; and Hon. Ammi R. Mitchell, 
one vote. 

A road was accepted this year leading from the 
residence of Joseph Leavitt Jr. to the Androscog- 
gin River. 

April I, Henry Rust Jr. received fifty-two votes 
for County Treasurer. 


On May 6, the property holders voted for Rep- 
resentative at the General Court, as follows : — 

George French received eighty-four votes ; Alden 
Blossom, forty-eight votes ; Jesse Bradford, one 
vote ; and John Turner, Esq., four votes. 

In September, five hundred dollars were raised 
for repair of highways, under the direction of the 
selectmen; and one hundred and fifty dollars for 
building a bridge over Martin Stream; and fifty 
dollars for building a powder-house. On February 
8, Daniel Gary, Esq., was chosen an agent for the 
town to appear at the Court of Common Pleas, in 
Paris, " to answer to a presentment found against 
said town for neglect in repairing the road." 


John Turner was chosen moderator; Joseph 
Bonney, town clerk ; George French, Jesse Brad- 
ford, and Thomas Merrill, selectmen; and Joseph 
Bonney, treasurer. A committee of one in each 
school district was chosen. For highways, two 
thousand dollars were raised ; and for schools, three 
hundred dollars. 

In April, eighty-one votes were cast for Henry 
Rust Jr. for County Treasurer. 

All possessing an income of ten dollars, or an 
estate valued at two hundred dollars, were warned 
to meet April 6, for the election of Governor and 
other ofiicers. 


For Governor, His Excellency, Elbrldge Gerry, 
received one hundred and fifty-three votes ; Caleb 
Strong, Esq., twenty-five votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William King 
had one hundred and forty-nine votes ; and William 
Phillips, Esq., forty-nine votes. 

For Senators from the district of Cumberland 
and Oxford, Eleazer W. Ripley received one hun- 
dred arid fifty votes ; Jonathan Page, Esq., one hun- 
dred and fifty votes; Ebenezer Poor, Esq., one 
hundred and fifty votes ; Mathew Cobb, Esq., twen- 
ty-five votes ; Lothrop Lewis, Esq., twenty-five 
votes; and Daniel Stowell, Esq., twenty-five votes. 

On the fourth of May, the votes for Representa- 
tive to the General Court were as follows: — 

Joseph Bonney, forty-eight ; George French, thir- 
ty-five ; John Turner, Esq., four. 

At a meeting held on the fourth of May, it was 
voted " to lay out a road from near Mr. Daniel 
Tuttle's to Samuel Kinsley's, leading by Bonney's 
Mills, so-called, and build a bridge across Twenty 
Mile Stream, provided that individuals would pro- 
cure the land therefor, and cover the bridge." 

The meeting took into consideration " our pres- 
ent alarming situation," and sought to ascertain 
what measures best be taken to secure the volun- 
teer service of able bodied men in the army. A 
committee chosen for the purpose, made a report 


which was accepted, but not put on record. One 
hundred and ten dollars were raised to pay an exe- 
cution against the town, probably on account of 
defective highway. 

On November 2, votes were cast for Representa- 
tive to Congress, as follows : — 

For Hon. Levi Hubbard, eighty-one ; Ebenezer 
Fessenden, Esq., twenty-three ; John Turner, Esq., 
one; Henry Rust, Esq., two. 

It was also voted that the selectmen take charge 
of the poor during the winter. 

On November 1 2, votes were cast for Electors of 
President and Vice-president of the United States, 
as follows : — 

Hon. John Woodman received eighty-four votes ; 
Theodore Mussey, Esq., eighty-four votes; Henry 
Rust, Esq., eighty-four votes ; Lothrop Lewis, forty- 
three votes ; Nathaniel Goodwin, forty-three votes ; 
Samuel Parris, forty-three votes. 


John Turner, Esq., was elected moderator; Jos- 
eph Bonney, town clerk ; John Turner, Joseph 
Bonney, and Jonathan Phillips, selectmen ; and 
Joseph Bonney, treasurer. There were raised for 
highways two thousand dollars, and for schools, two 
hundred dollars. The school districts were desig- 
nated by numbers, ten in all. For town charges 


and support of the poor, three hundred and fifty 
dollars were raised. 

On the fifth day of April the property holders 
cast their votes for public officers as follows: — 

For Governor, Hon. Joseph B. Varnum received 
one hundred and fifty votes ; His Excellency, Caleb 
Strong, twenty-nine votes ; Hon. William King, one 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William King 
received one hundred and forty-five votes; Hon. 
William Phillips, twenty-six votes. 

For Senators to represent the District of Cum- 
berland and Oxford, Hon. Ebenezer Poor received 
one hundred and forty votes; Jonathan Page, one 
hundred and thirty-nine votes; Capt. Robert Ilsley, 
one hundred and forty votes ; Hon. Lothrop Lewis, 
twenty-eight votes; Jacob Abbott, twenty-eight 
votes ; Daniel Stowell, twenty-eight votes ; William 
King, one vote. 

April 23, Henry Rust, Esq., received sixteen 
votes for County Treasurer. 

May 14, Joseph Bonney, was chosen Represen- 
tative to the General Court, receiving forty-three 


At a town-meeting held January 14, it was voted 
to indemnify the Trustees for expending the school 


fund in the manner they did, which was, probably, 
in support of the common town schools. 

At the annual meeting in March, Thomas Mer- 
rill was chosen moderator; Joseph Bonney, town 
clerk; John Turner, Jesse Bradford and Jonathan 
Phillips, selectmen ; and Joseph Bonney, treasurer. 
The selectmen were chosen a school committee, but 
their duties were not specified. A school agent for 
each district was also chosen. It was voted that 
notices for town-meetings be posted up on the guide- 
post at the corner by William Bradford's. It was 
voted to open the road from Joseph Leavitt Jr.'s to 
the great river; and to accept the road between the 
land of John Briggs and David Talbot, and Chand- 
ler Bradford and Jacob Ames to the great river. 
For highways, two thousand dollars were voted ; 
three hundred dollars for support of schools ; and 
two hundred dollars for town charges. 

Men of age, having an annual income of ten 
dollars, or real estate to the value of two hundred 
dollars, met on the fourth of April, to cast their 
votes for public officers, with the following result: — 

For Governor, Hon. Samuel Dexter, one hundred 
and sixty votes; His Excellency, Caleb Strong, 
thirty-four votes ; Henry Dearborn, Esq., one vote ; 
Hon. William Gray, one vote. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William Gray, 
one hundred and sixty-two votes ; His Honor, Wil- 
liam Phillips, thirty-two votes. 


For Senators to represent the District of Somer- 
set and Oxford, Albion K. Parris, Esq., received one 
hundred and fifty-three votes; and Hon. Daniel 
Stowell, thirty-one votes. 

For County Treasurer, Henry Rust, Esq., received 
fifty-five votes. 

At a legal meeting held May 9, it was voted 
not to send a Representative to the General Court. 

The selectmen were directed to remonstrate in 
behalf of the town, against the petition of the in- 
habitants of Fryeburg and others, praying that one 
term of the Circuit Court of Common Pleas, for the 
County of Oxford, may be held at Fryeburg. 

On June 6, at a legal meeting, a committee was 
raised, consisting of the selectmen, Capt. Henrys 
Jones and Samuel Blake, to make a draft of a bridge, 
and superintend the building of it, across the Twen- 
ty Mile River ; and five hundred dollars were raised 

November 9, the property holders of lawful age, 
voted for Representative to Congress as follows : — 

Hon. Albion K. Parris, received one hundred and 
seventeen votes ; and Samuel A. Bradley, Esq., 
twenty-seven votes. 

John Turner was chosen moderator; Joseph Bon- 
ney, town clerk; John Turner, Jesse Bradford, and 


Jonathan Phillips, selectmen ; and Joseph Bonney 
treasurer. In addition to the school agents a school 
committee was chosen, consisting of Daniel Hutch- 
inson, Alden Blossom, and Joseph Bonney. From 
this time forward, it seems that some attention was 
given to the supervision of the schools in town. 
There were raised for highways, fifteen hundred 
dollars ; and for schools, three hundred dollars. 
The same committee of three for supervision, was 
chosen this year. There were raised four hundred 
dollars to pay town charges. 

The property holders of legal age, on April 3, 
cast their votes for public officers as follows: — 

For Governor, Hon. Samuel Dexter, one hundred 
and sixty votes; His Excellency, Caleb Strong, 
forty-four votes ; Hon. William Gray, one vote. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William Gray, 
one hundred and forty-nine votes ; His Honor, Wil- 
liam Phillips, one vote. 

For Senators to represent the District of Oxford 
and Somerset, Hon. William Read, one hundred 
and forty-five votes ; Hon. Daniel Stowell, thirty- 
eight votes. 

For County Treasurer, Henry Rust, Esq., eighty 

At this meeting the road was accepted which had 
been "laid out" by the selectmen, leading from 
Minot line to Maj. Pollard's Mills ; it being the 
road from North Auburn to Turner Village. 


At a legal town-meeting held May i, votes were 
cast for Representative to the General Court as 
follows : Joseph Bonney had fifty-one votes ; John 
Gorham, thirteen votes ; Alden Blossom, ten votes ; 
and George French, one vote. Maj. Oliver Pollard 
and Gen. John Turner were chosen agents for the 
town, to attend Court at Paris, the second Tuesday 
in June, to conduct the business respecting an indict- 
ment found against the town for a deficiency of 
town stock. 

May 22, for County Register, Alanson Mellen, 
Esq., received thirteen votes, and Dr. Cornelius 
Holland, ten votes. 

At a meeting called for November 20, it was 
voted to divide the interest arising annually from 
the Ministerial Fund in the town of Turner among 
every religious sect or denomination known in law 
in said town ; and John Gorham, George French, 
Jesse Bradford, John Turner, Esq., Aaron Soule, 
Jonathan Phillips, and Joseph Bonney were chosen 
a committee to petition the Legislature for permis- 
sion to divide the annual interest arising from the 
Ministerial Fund, in the manner mentioned above. 


Thomas Merrill was chosen moderator, four votes 
being cast; Joseph Bonney, town clerk; Joseph 
Bonney, George French, and Aaron Soule, select- 


men; and Joseph Bonney, treasurer. For high- 
ways, fifteen hundred dollars were raised, and six 
hundred dollars for schools, but this sum was im- 
mediately reduced to four hundred dollars. For 
town debts, two hundred dollars were raised. A 
committee of one in each district, was chosen to 
have the care of the schools. This was a return to 
primitive methods. 

The property holders held a legal meeting April i, 
and voted for public ofificers : — 

For Governor, Hon. Samuel Dexter had one 
hundred and fifty-one votes ; Gen. John Brooks, 
forty-four votes; Hon. Levi Hubbard, one vote; 
Hon. William Gray, one vote. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William King 
received one hundred and forty-four votes ; His 
Honor, William Phillips, thirty-six votes. 

For County Treasurer, Henry Rust, Esq., receiv- 
ed thirty votes. 

For Senators for the District of Oxford and Som- 
erset, Hon. Levi Hubbard received one hundred 
and twenty-eight votes ; Levi Whitman, Esq., thirty- 
five votes ; and John Turner, Esq., one vote. 

For County Register, Alanson Mellen received 
forty-four votes. 

Five hundred dollars to be assessed in the money 
tax were voted for highways, to be expended by a 
committee chosen for the purpose. 


The qualified voters met May 6, for the election 
of a Representative to the General Court, which 
was to convene on the last Wednesday of the 
month. George French, Esq., received sixty-one 
votes; Joseph Bonney, four votes; and Jonathan 
Phillips, three votes. 

At a meeting held September 2, to ascertain the 
pleasure of the town as to forming the District of 
Maine into a separate and independent State, the 
yeas were seventy-five, and the nays sixty-five. 
John Turner, Esq., was chosen delegate to repre- 
sent the town in a convention to be held in Bruns- 
wick on the last Monday of the month, to consider 
the expediency of erecting Maine into an indepen- 
dent State. 

It was voted to build a pound thirty feet square 
on the inside, to be made of stone capped with 

November 4, votes were cast for Representative 
of the Seventh Eastern District in the Congress of 
the United States, with the following result : — 

Hon. Albion K. Parris received seventy-three 
votes ; Samuel A. Bradley, Esq., ten votes ; Henry 
Rust, Esq., eight votes ; and William Ladd, Esq., 
two votes. 


On January 13, the town consulted as to the 
most economic manner of supporting the poor 


through the winter, and voted "to put up the poor 
at vendue." The members of a family were sepa- 
rated, only one person being " set up " at a time. 
Eight members of one family were " bid off " by as 
many different men to support through the win- 
ter, at a cost to the town varying from twenty-six 
cents to one dollar per week for each person. Sev- 
enteen persons, some of them mere children, were 
disposed of in this manner for the winter, and in 
addition, a widow was voted five cords of wood, 
which a man agreed to furnish at one dollar per 

At the annual town-meeting in March, Thomas 
Merrill was chosen moderator; Joseph Bonney, 
clerk; Joseph Bonney, Jonathan Phillips, and Al- 
den Blossom, selectmen ; and Joseph Bonney, treas- 
urer. An agent for each school district was 
chosen ; also a school committee, consisting of 
three, viz.: Nathan Cole, Thatcher Blake, and 
Philip Bradford. Two thousand dollars were raised 
for highways, and three hundred for schools. The 
school fund was a source of perplexity, since by the 
act creating the fund, the interest was to be devoted 
annually for the support of a grammar or high 
school, and the town wished to use it for the sup- 
port of the district schools. The trustees were 
unwilling to expend the money in this way unless 
the town w^ould indemnify them for any loss they 
might sustain. 


There were raised for the support of the poor 
and to meet other obligations, one thousand dollars. 

At a meeting held April 7, for the choice of pub- 
lic officers, votes were cast as follows : — 

For Governor, Gen. Henry Dearborn received 
one hundred and twenty-eight; His Excellency, 
John Brooks, twenty-six ; and Hon. William King, 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. William King 
received one hundred and seventeen votes; and 
His Honor, William Phillips, twenty-seven votes. 

For Senators, John Moor, Esq., received one 
hundred and one votes ; and Levi Whitman, Esq., 
twenty-three votes. 

For County Treasurer, Henry Rust, Esq., had 
thirty-four votes. 

At a meeting held on May 5, for the purpose of 
choosing a Representative to the General Court, it 
was voted not to send one. 

At a meeting held September 8, it was voted "to 
set up the paupers at vendue," and they were set 
up at once. It was agreed that the overseers clothe 
the paupers, and that they who bid them off fur- 
nish simply their board. The price per week 
varied from sixteen cents to a dollar and a half, but 
there were only twelve this year; whether the fear 
of being " bid off " stimulated some to more earnest 
effort to support themselves, it does not appear. 



This year Thomas Merrill was chosen modera- 
tor; Joseph Bonney, clerk; Joseph Bonney, John 
Turner, and Alden Blossom, selectmen ; and Joseph 
Bonney, treasurer. In addition to the usual num- 
ber of school agents, a school committee consisting 
of Cyrus Clark, Alden Blossom, and Aaron Soule, 
was chosen. There were two thousand dollars 
raised for highways, and six hundred dollars for 
schools. No action was taken in regard to the sup- 
port of the poor. 

At a meeting held in March, to choose a Repre- 
sentative to the Congress of the United States, 
Albion K. Parris having resigned, Enoch Lincoln, 
Esq., received fifty-six votes, and Hon. Judah Dana, 
twenty votes. 

At a meeting held April 6, for the election of 
public officers, votes were cast as follows : — 

For Governor, Hon. Benjamin Crowningshield, 
one hundred and fourteen votes ; His Excellency, 
John Brooks, twenty-four votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. Thomas Kitter- 
idge, one hundred and fourteen votes; and Hon. 
William Phillips, twenty-four votes. 

For Senators, Doctor Samuel Small, one hun- 
dred and fourteen votes ; Hon. Luther Cary, twen- 
ty-four votes ; Hon. Daniel Stowell, one vote ; and 
Gen. John Turner, one vote. 


At a meeting held May ii, it was voted not to 
send a Representative to the General Court. 

At this meeting, it was voted not to reconsider 
the vote passed at the annual meeting to appropri- 
ate six hundred dollars for schools, showing that 
some were unwilling to pay so large a sum for that 
purpose. It was voted that " the paupers be sold 
at vendue for one year," and that they who bid 
them off keep them comfortably clothed. The 
bids ranged from nothing up to forty-nine cents 
a week, and the number sold was only eight. Ap- 
parently this method of supporting the poor had a 
wonderful effect in arousing their ambition to pro- 
vide for themselves. 

April 6, votes were cast for County Treasurer. 
Henry Rust, Esq., had forty-two. 

On November 2, votes were cast for Representa- 
tive to Congress for the Seventh Eastern District, 
as follows : — 

For Enoch Lincoln, Esq., fifty-one votes; for 
Samuel A. Bradley, Esq., one vote ;^ and Hon. 
Judah Dana, one vote. 

At this meeting, a road was accepted leading to 
the residence of John Swett Jr.; and another "near 
Nathan Cole's Tuttle House"; and still another, 
from Jabez T. Merrill's to the great river. 



At the annual meeting, John Turner, Esq., was 
chosen moderator; Joseph Bonney, clerk; John 
Turner, Alden Blossom, and Aaron Soule, select- 
men ; and Joseph Bonney, treasurer. 

Thomas Merrill, Philip Bradford, and Joseph 
Bonney were chosen a school committee, who were 
instructed to establish a grammar school in such 
place, or places, as in their judgment would be for 
the best interest of the town, to be supported by 
the school fund so far as it would go. But this was 
a step in advance of public opinion, and the vote 
to establish a grammar school was reconsidered at 
an adjourned meeting. For the support of schools, 
six hundred dollars were raised ; seventeen hun- 
dred dollars for highways, to be expended in the 
usual manner, and five hundred dollars to be 
expended under the direction of a special commit- 
tee ; and six hundred dollars for support of the poor 
and other purposes. There were only six persons 
to be supported by the town, and they were " bid 
off " as in previous years, the cost of keeping each 
one per week varying from nothing up to one dollar 
and seventy cents. 

At a meeting held April 5, votes were cast for 
public officers, as follows : — 


For Governor, Hon. Benjamin Crowningshield, 
one hundred and thirty-two votes ; for His Excel- 
lency, John Brooks, twenty-six votes. 

For Lieutenant-Governor, Hon. Benjamin Aus- 
tin, one hundred and thirty-two votes; for His 
Honor, William Phillips, twenty-six votes. 

For Senators, Hon. John Moore, one hundred 
and thirty-two votes ; for Hon. Peleg Wadsworth, 
twenty-six votes. 

For County Treasurer, Henry Rust, Esq., one 
hundred and eight votes. 

At a meeting held the third day of May, to 
choose a Representative to the General Court, 
Doctor Philip Bradford received forty-seven votes ; 
Joseph Bonney, thirty-six votes ; John Turner, Esq., 
five votes ; and Cyrus Clark, three votes. 

At this meeting, it was voted to raise an addi- 
tional sum of five hundred dollars to be expended 
on the highways under a special committee, and to 
build a bridge over the Twenty Mile River, under 
the direction of Alden Blossom, Thatcher Blake, 
and Jesse Bradford. 

Voted to discontinue the road between the land 
of Isaac Leavitt and Warren Richmond to the 
great river; also the road from Amasa Tribou's 
dwelling-house toward Pond Brook; and also the 
road from Blunt Nose, so called, toward Lumbard's 


On the sixth day of July, the town voted on the 
following question : " Is it expedient that the Dis- 
trict of Maine become a separate and independent 
State, upon the terms and conditions provided in 
an act passed by the General Court for that pur- 
pose ? " The number of votes in favor of erecting 
Maine into an independent State were one hundred 
and fifty-one ; opposed to it, fifteen. 

At a meeting held September 20, called to 
choose delegates to attend a convention of dele- 
gates to be held in Portland on the second Monday 
in October, to form a constitution and frame of 
government for the new State, Gen. John Turner 
and Doctor Philip Bradford were chosen. 

This convention having accomplished its work, a 
meeting was called for December 6, that the town 
might express its approbation or disapprobation of 
the proposed constitution. Eighty-eight votes were 
cast in favor of it. 

It seems that the town had some difficulty with 
Southworth Washburn for work done on the road, 
and for building a bridge near his house, for at a 
meeting called for the purpose, the selectmen were 
authorized to settle with him, if they could, on 
terms satisfactory to themselves, " otherwise said 
Washburn may seek his own remedy." 



Gen. John Turner was chosen moderator of the 
annual meeting ; Joseph Bonney was chosen clerk ; 
Joseph Bonney, Asa Bradford, and Philip Bradford, 
selectmen ; and Joseph Bonney, treasurer. Nathan 
Cole, William K. Porter, and John Blake, were 
chosen school committee. There were raised for 
schools, six hundred dollars ; fifteen hundred dol- 
lars for highways, and two hundred dollars for 
highways, to be expended under the direction of a 
special committee. 

At a meeting held the third day of April, votes 
were cast as follows : — 

For Governor, Hon. William King, one hundred 
and forty. 

For Senators, Hon. Samuel Small, one hundred 
and forty-five; James W. Ripley, Esq., one hundred 
and forty-five. 

For Representative to the Legislature, Gen. John 
Turner, one hundred and twelve ; Col. Cyrus Clark, 
fifty-two; Joseph Bonney, eight. 

For County Treasurer, Alanson Mellen received 
thirty votes. 

At this meeting, it was voted to refer the matter 
in dispute between the town and Southworth Wash- 
burn, respecting the bridge and road near his mills, 
to referees for settlement. His mills are now 
known as Chase's Mills. 


At a meeting held May i, it was voted that " the 
poor be sold at vendue "; that those who " bid them 
off must keep them comfortably clothed and fed, 
and send the children to the town school, and pay 
all expenses except doctor's bills"; but were to 
have the benefit of their labor. The number bid 
off was four only, at a price ranging from seventeen 
cents to forty cents per week. In addition to this, 
the town agreed to pay Abijah Gorham twenty- 
eight dollars to furnish Jotham Briggs, wife, and 
two children, house room for a year, and seventeen 
cords of wood. The town also voted to pay Jotham 
Briggs fifty cents per week, and furnish him fifteen 
pounds of flax and wool. For support of poor and 
town debts, nine hundred dollars were raised. 

On November 6, the town voted as follows : — 

For Electors at Large, Gen. Joshua Wingate, 
ten votes ; William Moody, Esq., ten votes. 

For Elector of the Seventh Congressional Dis- 
trict, Gen Levi Hubbard, nine votes. 

For Representative to Congress, Enoch Lincoln, 
Esq., ten votes. 


At the annual meeting Thomas Merrill was 
chosen moderator ; Joseph Bonney, clerk ; Joseph 
Bonney, Asa Bradford, and Aaron Soule, selectmen ; 
and Joseph Bonney, treasurer. The selectmen 


were chosen the school committee, and an agent 
was chosen for each of the fourteen school districts. 
Voted three thousand dollars for highways, and 
four hundred dollars for schools, which was after- 
ward increased to five hundred dollars ; and five 
hundred and fifty dollars for support of the poor, 
and to pay town charges. 

September lo, a meeting was held for the elec- 
tion of State and county officers. 

For Governor, Albion K. Parris received one hun- 
dred and fifty-four votes; Ezekiel Whitman, eighteen 
votes ; Gen. Joshua Wingate, ten votes ; and Mark 
L. Hill, one vote. 

For Senators, Gen. James W. Ripley received 
eighty-one votes ; Cornelius Holland, eighty-one 
votes ; Gen. James Steele, seventy-two votes ; 
George French, seventy-two votes ; Joseph Bonney, 
one vote ; and Thomas Merrill, one vote. 

For Representative, Joseph Bonney received sev- 
enty-nine votes ; Cyrus Clark, fifty-nine votes ; and 
Nathan Cole, one vote. 

The selectmen, treasurer, and town clerk held 
several meetings during the fall and early winter, 
at which David Talbot and Alden Blossom, were 
licensed as innholders for one year; and Cyrus 
Clark, William Parris, Alden Blossom, and Isaac 
Chase were licensed to " retail strong liquors until 
the first Monday of September next." 



Thomas Merrill, Esq., was chosen moderator; 
Joseph Bonney, town clerk ; Thomas Merrill, John 
Blake, and Philip Bradford, selectmen ; and Joseph 
•Bonney, treasurer. Rev. Allen Greely, Dr. Luther 
Gary, and William K. Porter, Esq., were chosen 
school committee. " Voted to indemnify the trus- 
tees of the school fund from harm in consequence 
of a part of the interest of said fund being expended 
in a common English school." Three thousand 
dollars were raised for highways, five hundred for 
support of schools, and five hundred for the sup- 
port of the poor, and for other town charges. 

It was voted that Elisha Sylvester and wife, 
paupers, be removed to Scituate, Massachusetts, at 
the expense of the town, and that " the other pau- 
pers be set up at vendue." Two families and one 
person were provided for in this manner, the single 
person being kept for fifteen cents a week. 

The selectmen, treasurer, and town clerk licensed 
Cyrus Clark, William Harris, Alden Blossom, and 
Isaac Chase to sell strong liquors one year, and 
Alden Blossom and David Talbot to be innholders 
for the same time. 

At a meeting held in September, fifteen hundred 
dollars were raised for highways. The town owned 
no building in which to hold the annual meetings, 
and a proposition to buy the school-house near 
Sylvester Jones's for that purpose was rejected. 

It has been thought best not to continue the Annals any further. 


This occurred at the village, July 7, 1886, one hundred years 
from the date of the Act of Incorporation passed by the Gen- 
eral Court of Massachusetts, erecting the plantation of Sylves- 
ter-Canada into the town of Turner. The day was favorable, 
and large numbers of former residents, and of people from the 
adjacent towns were present. Two large tents were procured, 
each two hundred feet long and fifty feet wide, one for the 
celebration proper, and the other for the dinner. The com- 
mittee of arrangements, chosen at the town-meeting in the 
preceding March, consisted of Hon. Rufus Prince, Maj. H. C^ 
Haskell, Rackley D. Leavitt, Henry Turner, Elias Keene, and 
Dr. John T. Cushing. 


It was about a mile long, and was half an hour in passing a 
given point. The tableaux of every day scenes of a century 
ago, the representations of the costumes and customs of the 
settlers of Turner, the historical allegories and quaint reminders 
of long ago, made it a most gratifying and instructive panorama. 
It was headed by the Norway Band, twenty-four pieces. The. 
Chief Marshal was Maj. H. C. Haskell, and his aids were Capt. 
Aubrey Leavitt and Capt. J. E. Ash. The Marshal of the 
second division was Henry Turner, and his aids, Henry Bon- 
ney and L. E. Merrill. 

The first division was the marching division ; the second and 
most diverting, was the costumed historical show on wheels. 

Wilson Post, G. A. R., thirty-two men, had the right of the 
line. Four carriages followed, containing the President of the 
day, Hon. Rufus Prince, the orators and invited guests. The- 


next organization was Nezinscot Lodge of Free Masons, thirty- 
two men. Teagues Hill Lodge of Good Templars, twenty-three 
persons, rode in a decorated hay-rack. Turner Grange made a 
grand display. The chief officer rode in a handsome barouche. 
Seven more nice teams conveyed the officers and members, 
each officer carrying a banner with an evergreen inscription. 

An Ancient Drum and Fife Corps played for the second 
division. This drum corps was one of the inspiring features of 
the parade. Round after round of applause broke out as these 
gray-haired grandsires marched by, with heads erect, playing 
lustily. The snare drummers were Amasa Johnson of Auburn, 
aged sixty-six years, S. H. Keene of Hebron, aged sixty-two. 
Fifer, Nathaniel Keene of Poland, aged seventy-two years next 
August. He was fifer for Co. K in the late rebellion. He and 
Mr. Johnson were both in the Madawaska war. Mr. Johnson 
played a drum that was made in 1786. These old men merrily 
beating and piping ''The girl I left behind me," formed an 
unwonted spectacle. 

Going to Church in 1786. This scene was pictured by 
Mr. J. H. Conant and Mrs. Mary Parsons, who rode in the 
first wagon brought into the town of Turner. They were 
dressed in the steeple hat, sun-bonnet, and other clothing of a 
hundred years ago, and made a laughable tableau. 

Shingle Makers. On a cart rode several men, shaving 
shingles, portraying an early industry of Turner. 

Early Settlers. An old-fashioned family on an ox-cart 
represented the Keene family moving into Turner in 1777. 

Goddess of Liberty. Mrs. Stella Brown of North Turner, 
in an appropriate costume, rode in a triumphal car and depicted 
the Goddess of Liberty. 

The Choir. This was one of the most elaborate and pleas- 
ing parts of the show. In a hay-rack were the old fiddlers and 
singers, costumed from Turner's attics. Horace True, in a tall 
white hat, was the conductor; Maurice Gary and Welcome 


Beals, fiddlers ; Jairus Gary and Albert E. Bradford, bass viol ; 
Mrs. J. P. Waterman, Mrs. H. A. Hildreth, Mrs. A. K. Bickford, 
Mrs. C. J. Fish, sang the air; Mrs. S. I. Decoster and Mrs. 
Leonard P. Bradford, counter ; Mr. Lewis P. Bradford and Rev. 
A. N. Jones, tenor ; Mr. J. P. Waterman and Mr. D. J. Briggs, 
bass. Robert Sutton was driver. The choir played and sung 
old tunes as they proceeded ; but, alas ! their hay-rack broke 
down before they had gone far. The bass viol played by A. 
E. Bradford, was the one which his grandfather, William Brad- 
ford, used to play in church, and is understood to be the one 
first brought into town. 

Chair Factory. This North Turner industry was repre- 
sented by a crew of men on a car, making wicker chairs. 

Canning Factory. Another North Turner Industry was 
shown by a crew making tin cans, with their machinery, on a 

The Four Seasons. North Turner also contributed this 
carriage to the parade, and it was one of the prettiest. Four 
young ladies were dressed as the seasons. Spring had flowers, 
Summer was in the garb of the zephyr. Autumn bore sheaves 
and a sickle and fruit, Winter, rather hard on her, was done up 
in a fur-trimmed cloak and hat. 

The Most Remarkable Turnout was a carriage conveying 
the four children of Caleb House, the first settler of North 
Turner, three old gentleman and one old lady, aged eighty-eight, 
eighty-six, eighty-three, and seventy-eight years, respectively. 
One of them said, '* There is another one seventy-six years old, 
but he could not come." Is it not remarkable that the children 
of the first settler should survive to celebrate the centennial. 

Going to the Parson's. This idea was carried out by a 
blushing young couple in a very old chaise. They wore clothes 
a century old. The couple were Mr. A. F. Pratt, and Miss M. 
O. Hooper. 


Pioneer Evening Scene. This was a felicitous conception 
well consummated. A large, long cabin, with open doors and 
windows, was mounted on trucks. In the interior you saw the 
father shelling corn into a tub, the mother knitting, and the 
children occupied with their stints. The corn-sheller was 
Charles Bonney, of the North Parish. 

Going to a Party ; Old and New. A company of men 
and women on horseback, in continental costumes, was the 
" old " ; a modern team the " new." The costumes were very 

A Relic of ancient Turner was carried in the next tableau. 
A rough log-house was set up and in front of it was nailed a 
weather-beaten sign, barely legible, nearly one hundred years 
old, reading "John Keen, Tavern, 1792." 

Redskins. The Indians were a department of the show that 
edified the children exceedingly. Ten braves and squaws with 
painted faces, feathers, and all the trappings of the typical wild 
Indians, rode horse-back, and flourished tomahawks. 

Chair Bottomers. The old way of bottoming chairs was 
shown in this carriage. 

The One-Hoss Shay. A model of Dr. Holmes' immortal- 
ized vehicle was put in by Mrs. A. R. Cary of South Turner. 

The First Settler. Another log-cabin on wheels, inhabited 
by pioneers with their guns and powder-horns, was a tribute to 
the men who moved to Sylvester-Canada (now Turner), when it 
was a wilderness. W. C. Whitman and S. Adkins were the 

Ancient Weaving. In a car imitating an olden kitchen, 
Mrs. Calvin McKinney rode, plying her loom busily. The old 
loom was a novelty to many observers. 

The Bridal Party was a spectacle worthy of the most bril- 
liant carnival. It was a realistic picture of a bride and groom 
coming to town with a mounted escort, one hundred years ago. 
The whole party of five wore elegant velvet and silk costumes 


of the Revolution, and rode handsome horses. Mr. Harry A. 
Bearce was disguised as the bride, and Mr. Frank E. Bray was 
the groom. 

Them Steers. Solon Chase was the lion of the day. He 
drove a beautiful pair of black steers, hauling a hay-rack full of 
children, who carried a banner reading, "We drive them steers." 
The crowd cheered and applauded Solon, and many rushed 
into the road to shake his hand. Solon was quite in his 

Revolutionary Relics. The representatives of Snell's 
Hill rode in another old kitchen scene. On the front of the 
car, Caleb Snell, in full war paint, brandished a rifle, captured 
by his father in the Revolutionary war. A Revolutionary fife 
and drum were played by a pair of performers, while women 
in Revolutionary gowns churned Revolutionary churns, and 
revolved Revolutionary spinning-wheels. 

An Indian Wigwam. There was no more faithful tableau 
than this, done by Mr. George Staples and his family. They 
were dressed and painted as Indians, and had a birch canoe, 
bows, arrows, and all the Indian fixings. A pretty little girl, 
who passed as their captive, elicited the admiration of the 

The Schools. Every school district in the town sent its 
hay-rack or large load of children to the parade, and their 
shining faces enlivened it, and made the show seem to enjoy 
itself full as much as other folks enjoyed it. Their carriages 
were trimmed with leaves and evergreen, and they were dressed 
in their best. The boys of one school, who rode in a boat, 
wore blue sailor suits. In another school, the girls wore little 
white bonnets, and the boys straw hats with red bands all alike. 
The Village Grammar School boys wore white jockey caps, with 
" V. G." on them. District No. 7 rode in a great black shoe. 

A Unique Device closed the procession. It was dedicated 
to ** Our Prodigals." A beautiful young lady carried a welcom- 


ing banner in advance. A butcher and a fatted calf rode in a 
cart, the butcher sharpening his knife. The cart was inscribed 
" Our Prodigals have returned." Daniel C. Stevens and James 
F. Ridley were butcher and driver. 

The above description of the procession is taken from the 
Lewiston yournal^ mostly, the enterprising publishers of which 
made full and elaborate reports of the celebration. 

The order of exercises in the great tent was as follows : — 

Centennial March, by Norway Band. 

Prayer by Rev. E. Martin, late Presiding Elder, Lewiston 

Singing, by chorus of one hundred voices, Albert E. Brad- 
ford, conductor. 

Address of Welcome, by Dr. J. T. Gushing. 

Historical Address, by Rev. W. R. French, d.d. 


Poem, by Mrs. Caroline W. D. Rich of Auburn, granddaughter 
of one of the first settlers in Turner. 

Dinner, in a large tent on the grounds. 

Address, by Hon. Washington Gilbert of Bath. 


Address, by Hon. George A. Wilson of South Paris. 


Short Speeches, by residents and former citizens of Turner. 


Music by the Band. 


One hundred years ago the seventh day of last month, a bill 
incorporating the town of Turner passed one branch of the 
Legislature of Massachusetts, and received the signature of the 
Speaker of the House, Artemas Ward. Just one month later 
it passed the Senate, and was signed by the Governor, James 
Bowdoin. I hold in my hand a copy of the original bill as it 


passed the Legislature of Massachusetts, making this wide 
domain about us a town. One hundred years are past. We 
meet today to celebrate the event. Our first word is a word of 
welcome. We, whose privilege it is to remain within these 
borders, have anticipated this day and this happy reunion, and 
have prepared to celebrate it. We welcome all, — fathers, 
mothers, brothers, sisters, friends. We welcome here the 
descendants of that band whose sturdy arms here felled the 
giant oak and beech of the primeval forest, and built Christian 
homes where Indian camp-fires had smoked, and savage beasts 
reared their young. We welcome the descendants of those 
coming later, who brought encouragement and hope to the 
scattered settlers. We welcome the venerable men and women 
who shared in those early labors, privations, and victories, the 
fruit of whose toils can be seen throughout the length and 
breadth of this prosperous and wealthy town. We welcome all 
the sons and daughters of this town who have come to us from 
far and near ; from the Pacific slope and the boundless prairies 
of the West, the Atlantic shores and the sunny groves of the 
South. Welcome to every citizen and resident of early or later 
years, to our hospitality and good cheer. 

One hundred years ago, the conditions of life in the world 
abroad were as different from those that exist today as we can 
well imagine. The country had but recently emerged from a 
long and bloody conflict with England, in which the stupidity 
and arrogance of George III. had been pitted against the 
patriotism and bravery of the American colonies, with Massa- 
chusetts, of which this town was a part, in the van. 

The States, with their resources crippled and burdened with 
a heavy debt, were still struggling under the imperfect pro- 
visions of the Articles of Confederation. 

It was nearly two years after the incorporation of this town 
that that wonderful charter of American rights and freedom, 
the Constitution of the United States, was adopted, and that 


government of the people, for the people, and by the people, 
under which we have lived so prosperously and securely, was 
safely inaugurated. Previous to this time, George Washing- 
ton had resigned his commission as Commander-in-Chief of 
the army, and was now a private citizen. Perhaps the thought 
of being President of the United States, or of there ever being 
a President, had never entered his mind. Oh ! the events of a 
hundred years. History fails to record them half! But our 
fathers builded better than they knew. They gave us a govern- 
ment which maintains peace amid change and progress without 
revolution. While the settlers here were trying the experiment 
of self-government in that glorious New England institution, 
the town-meeting, the horrors of the French Revolution were 
being enacted, and the reign of terror was chilling the blood of 
the civilized world. A few years later, when England hurled 
her second menace across the ocean, and the young republic 
rose to arms to defend her dear bought rights and privileges, 
our native town was not behind her neighbors in sending her 
sons to the front, and so it has been throughout the century. 
The men of Turner have been found in the front at every call 
of duty. As we sit here today, we can recall the stirring scenes 
which transpired all over the North twenty-five years ago. We 
can recall the excitement that was caused when the news was 
flashed along the line that Fort Sumter had fallen. We can 
remember how eagerly and yet how thoughtfully we read Presi- 
dent's Lincoln's proclamation, calling for seventy-five thousand 
volunteers. At this call, our hitherto peaceful and industrious 
people began to enroll themselves as soldiers of the republic, 
realizing that only at the point of the bayonet could the Union 
be preserved, bringing to the altar of their country, that most 
precious of all gifts, their heart's blood. 

But the treason was not crushed by that insignificant army. 
And so the call went forth for five hundred thousand additional 
troops, and our old men, our young men, our middle aged men, 


rose in their might, determined to defeat and drive back the 
mighty hosts that threatened to destroy the constitution, crush 
liberty, and take the life of the nation itself. In face of this 
threatened danger, old party lines gave way ; the people, with- 
out regard to political faith, rallied to the defence of the old 

But the rebellion continued to gain strength, and Mr. Lin- 
coln's call again rang throughout the land, ** Send me three 
hundred thousand volunteers." The patriotic men of the North 
did not falter ; they started for the front, shouting with united 
voice, " We are coming. Father Abraham, three hundred thou- 
sand more." And thus the great North kept filling up the 
ranks of the army, as they were thinned by disease and rebel 
bullets, until, at last, treason went down, and the Union was 
saved. The flags floating from our hillsides on each Memorial 
Day bear sorrowful witness to the bravery and the patriotism 
of the men of this town who willingly offered up their lives. 

" Brave boys were they, 

Gone at their country's call, 
And yet, and yet, we cannot forget, 
That many brave boys must fall." 

That the incorporators of this town were men of sterling 
worth and advanced ideas in morals and education, no one 
to-day can doubt. The results of their wisdom and foresight 
have been that our churches have been prosperous, and our 
schools have been the pride of the whole community. We 
have to thank the fathers for much in this respect, and to blame 
them for little. 

But we are gathered here not only to look backward, but also 
to look forward. We are here not to close up anything. Noth- 
ing ends to-day but a century of time. The political and social 
questions of the present are for our solving, as those of a 
hundred years ago, were for our fathers. As we gather to-day 


to talk over the past of our town, let us not forget her present 
and future work. The privations and hardships may be past, 
but our duties as citizens lie straight on before us, to keep our 
town in the peaceful and prosperous way of the past, to see 
that we remain an honorable and law-abiding community, 
remembering that " Righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is 
a reproach to any people." 

Once more, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, friends, we 
bid you a cordial and hearty welcome. 

The Historical Address is omitted, as the facts and items of 
interest contained in it may be found in the history of the town. 

turner's centennial.* 

History ever interweaveth 

In her checkered web of fate, 
Silken meshes of sweet living, 

Threads that gleam and undulate 
All along the shadowy cycle. 

Twining 'round dear names of old, 
Like a coronet of jewels, 

Strung upon a thread of gold. 

People of the past are thronging 

All about me, as I write ; 
They are gathering in the evening. 

In the rosy, morning light 
They come, through the mists and shadows. 

Stalwart men and maidens fair, 
Side by side, with heads of silver. 

Mingling, thronging, here and there. 

* By Mrs. Caroline W. D. Rich, daughter of Mrs. Anna Leavitt Stockbridge, who 
was the daughter of Joseph Leavitt, pioneer of Turner, Copyrighted. 


Now they tarry for a moment, 

Now are vanishing again, 
As, sometimes, the shadows linger, 

Over fields of golden grain. 
• How their griefs and woes are mellowed ! 

And their loves, so true and strong. 
Fragrant as the faded rose leaves, 

Hallowed as the matin song ! 

A century now closes, 

Since this town had its birth ; 
And still the Androscoggin flows, 

With plenty teems the earth. 
The wild bird sings his love-song. 

The seasons come and go. 
And, over rocky hill-sides, 

The lingering brooks still flow. 
The years are full of promise ; 

The sunshine and the rain, 
The winter snows, the springtime dews, 

Have never been in vain. 

Aye, backward roll historic wheels. 

And let us see again. 
The old-time men and women, 

As they were living, then. 

It is a simple story, 

Yet it is grand and true; 
No myth, or idle fancy, 

Through history's glass we view. 
Our fathers felled the forests 

On hills and valleys fair ; 
They braved the cruel Indian, 


The wild beast in his lair. 
The solitude of ages 

Gave place to busy toil, 
And men of good old English blood, 

Were tillers of the soil. 
They peopled these rough hillsides, 

They dwelt beside the streams, 
They planned for future ages, 

They dreamed their daring dreams. 

Not the most skillful limner. 

Could paint those early years ; 
The heavy burdens of the day, 

The nights of ceaseless fears. 
When mothers held their babies 

So closely to their breast, 
As ** dire alarm or tragic fear," 

Prevented restful rest. 

O, those were days of patience, 
When men and women brave. 

Were noble and heroic, 
Dear liberty to save. 

They came from homes of plenty, 

One hundred years agone, 
Through forests by a '''- spotted line ^^ 

Those men and women strong. 
Strong in their love of country, 

Strong in their trust in God, 
And strong in hope of future 

Fruition and reward. 
The wild beasts howled about them. 

Strange terrors oft would creep 


Into their slumbering fancy, 

And nightly revels keep. 
These primal, dense, dark forests, 

Were Indian hunting ground ; 
And here the Abenakis, 

A powerful tribe, was found. 
Near by the Androscoggin, 

Their wigwams stood in line ; 
O'erhung by pine and hemlocks, 

And graceful wild woodbine. 

One old, ancestral legend, 

You '11 pardon, if I tell, 
The pioneer — young Leavitt — * 

The man whom it befell, 
Had built a house of timbers, 

Plastered the cracks with clay, 
A fire-place of unhewn stone, 

With his strong arms he lay ; 
And then in cob-house fashion. 

The chimney carried out, 
With sticks, well chinked with mud or clay, 

('T was a fine house, no doubt.) 
A bar of hammered iron. 

Served for a rustic crane, 
The hooks were of witch-hazel, 

(I trust I make it plain.) 
Then, like a frontier hunter. 

He hung the pot, to cook 
The venison from the forest, 

Or fish from out the brook. 
He left his kettle boiling, 

When he went out one morn, 
But when he came for dinner, 

Kettle and fish were gone ! 


With yankee wit and shrewdness, 

Young Leavitt, with his gun, 
Went out to find a red man, 

And have a little fun. 
He met an Indian Sachem, 

And put him to the test, 
Explaining the witch-hazel, 

To carry out his jest. 
Told how the white man used it, 

To find perennial springs ; 
With it he found out secrets. 

And petty pilferings ! 
And his trick worked like magic. 

When he came home that night, 
The pot was hanging on his crane, 

His household goods all right. 

The women of those early days, 

Were busy as the men ; 
For homespun clothes and coverlids, 

Were all the fashion then. 
The great wheel in a corner. 

With snowy heap of rolls. 
Was turned by fair young maiden, 

Before the glowing coals ; 
For, smoother and much finer, 

The fleecy wool would run. 
If standing near an open fire. 

Or in the summer sun. 

The carding and the spinning 
Of wool, and tow, and flax, 

Kept all the household busy, 
While menfolk used the axe. 


The little wheel we covet 

To decorate our halls, 
Our grand-dames kept a-buzzing, 

Within their humble walls. 
Full many a fine spun kerchief, 

Of whitest, softest flax, 
Has helped the rustic farmer 

To pay his Sunday tax. 
Heirlooms of precious treasure, 

We keep them all today, 
The work of loving fingers, 

That long since passed away. 

The loom, so tall and clumsy, 

The treadle, and the beam, 
The warping bars, and harness, 

The shuttle, with its gleam, 
As flying back and forward, 

With deftest toss, it went. 
Were, in themselves a poem. 

In homes of sweet content. 
The new mown hay, so fragrant. 

From rafters, down to bay, 
Filled all the air with odors. 

While girls and boys, so gay. 
With peal on peal of laughter, 

And milk-pails on their arm, 
Came from the yard at milking-time. 

Such was life on the farm. 

Upon the highest hillside. 

They built the house of prayer, 
With pulpit like a telescope, 

And narrow, winding stair. 



From seventeen hundred seventy-seven, 

Till seventeen eighty-one, 
Good Parson Strickland preached and prayed, 

And with a nasal twang, 
The deacon, deaconed out the hymn, 

And then the singers sang. 

Then General Court sent them Priest Turner ; 

He came from old Scituate ; 
He wore a wig, and cocked hat, 

Was courtly, and learned, sedate — 
Just a trifle too proud, it may be, 

Too liberal in creed about fate, 
Knew WHISKEY from old Souchong tea. 

And drove through his parish in state. 

A legend illustrates his manners, 
When meeting a bear to the face. 

His polish was too much for bruin, 
His courtliness made him feel small, 

And so, with his grizzly head drooping. 
Bruin turned and jumped over the wall. 

Parson Greely, I think, was the next ; 

The meeting-house now had come down, 
And stood on the side of the hill. 

Half way between high and low town. 
The parson was learned and wise. 

His sermons were wordy and long. 
The deacons could sleep with closed eyes, 

And sometimes they snored loud and strong. 
The young-folk, in pews like a box, 

Could whisper and laugh on the sly, 
While at noontime they staid in the porch, 

And ate bread and cheese and mince pie. 


There were huskings, and raisings, and choppings, 

And apple-bees, summer and fall ; 
There were singing-schools, kept in the winter, 

And spelling-schools, better than all. 
For then they chose sides, and did battle, 

Hurling mighty words, each at the other, 
And the victor went sleigh-riding home. 

With some other girl's handsome brother. 

Besides the ministers I mention, 

It is my duty, and intention, 
To speak of those whose names you cherish, 

For there are names that ne'er will perish. 

Of military men, this town 

Had a good share, and some renown ; 
For General Wadsworth, known to fame, 

Once on a time, to Turner came ; 
And as we reckon pedigree — 

His grandson — Longfellow — you see, 
A scion of the Wadsworth line, 

Belongs to Turner — and in fine. 
Might have been born in this old town, 

Had General Peleg settled down. 
And Joseph Leavitt,* histories tell. 

To save old Boston, fought right well. 
Turner, and Putnam, and Sawtelle, 

Blake, Allen, Merrill, and Wardwell, 
And others, heard their country's call. 

But time would fail, did I name all. 

• Joseph Leavitt wa« a yolanteer In 1775, In the original three months' army, to 
defend old Boston. 


Your men of letters, with high aim, 

Have a good record, some have fame. 
Your journalist of earlier days, 

Was Seba Smith, who won much praise ; 
The busy world would pause to read 

"Jack Downing," and forget its greed. 
As humorist, he led the van ; 

Others have followed his quaint plan ; 
Artemas, Twain, and Partington, 

Are scarcely peers of Turner's son. 
Of royalty you well may glory. 

Princes % you have, but not a tory. 
One Governor this town has had — 

Ah, no ! I have a note, 
You lost that honor, I believe, 

By just one single vote. 

A wealthy man — Bradford by name — 

Heard the tin horn, and homeward came. 
The day was hot, and so in joke. 

Upon a stake he flung his coat. 
And to his men he said, " You '11 see 

What a fine scare-crow this will be." 
There was another man, you know, 

Joe House his name — called Uncle Joe. 
He had keen wit, and waggish tongue ; 

He drank " New England " just for fun. 
He was a ne'er do well to boot. 

Was often crazy as a coot ; 
His pranks would make the sternest smile, 

X Turner has always had men of the name, who have held posts of honor. 


And even a scare-crow did beguile 
To swap the coat that Bradford left ; 

" Swapping," he said, *' could not be theft." 
Passing that way, he saw quite plain, 

A scare-crow with a coat. In vain 
His challenge for a "swap." No word. 

Indeed the scare-crow never stirred. 
At length, said Joe, ** It seems quite plain, 

That all my talking is in vain. 
Silence means yes, we '11 change at once, 

I can't spend words on such a dunce." 
The better coat, Joe wore away. 

And Bradford went without that day. 

As glancing over history's track. 

The lapsing years are ranged, 
Hardships are scarcely recognized ; 

Change hastens after change. 
They come ! they go ! from first to last. 

Men of good blood and brain. 
Our fathers left their sons to fight 

Life's battles o'er again. 

With eagle's quill is written here 
In golden characters, so clear 
That truth oft sung, and often told, 

** Good deeds can never die," 
Crushed truth, again will rise ; 

Forever pointing to the sky, 
Forever a surprise. 


• Out of the pain, the toil, God makes 
Every tomorrow bright. 
Out of truth vanquished, still he gives 
Strength for a stronger fight. 

My rhymes have lingered in the past, 

But, looking forward, themes more vast, 
Arrest my thought ; and urge my pen, 

To speak a word for future men. 
These rocky hills a century hence may see, 

The smoking engine, like a burning tree, 
Go through these valleys, with an echoing shriek. 

It may be, then, across the land you '11 speak, 
To transatlantic friends, as you today 

Speak to your neighbor, living o'er the way. 
Across the seas, a tube may then be thrown, 

Through which a novel carriage will be blown, 
By compressed atmosphere, on some new plan. 

Perchance invented by a Turner man. 

Down the shadowy, unknown future. 

Thronging generations go ; 
Time's dull bell is ringing, ringing, 

Time's strong wheel turns sure, yet slow ! 
As the moments, swiftly passing, 

Noiseless come, and noiseless go, 
Like the arrow, which the bow-string 


Speeds from tensely bended bow 
On, and on, till a new century, 

Has its mystic cycle run ; 
Then, perchance, another poet. 

With more gifted pen than mine, 
Will rehearse the new — old story ^ 

Of the days of " Auld Lang Syne." 


All communities, whether great or small, have their epochs. 
We compute long periods of time by centuries. And it is at 
this joyous season, when nature is in her most gorgeous splen- 
dor, when the landscape charms the eye with visions of beauty 
and fills the heart with glad and beneficent emotions, when the 
harvests of the year are beginning to ripen into fruition in 
reward of labors worthily bestowed, that we are assembled to 
commemorate the birth of an infant municipality and to cele- 
brate the achievements of its first hundred years. 

These thoughts gf necessity bring to our minds the memory 
of the early inhabitants of the town, who, with strong arms and 
stouter hearts, came to hew out homes from the depths of the 
wilderness, and cheerfully encountered the privations and the 
terrors of wilderness life in pursuit of competence and indepen- 
dence, and to attain to thrift by steady and frugal industry. 
The homage of the heart is willingly rendered to their courage 
and constancy, to their manly and womanly virtues. To con- 
sider their early deeds in their true light, and award them the 
full honors due to their merits, we must view them as separating 
themselves from paternal homes, from the embrace and sympathy 
of friends, and the society of peaceful communities, to enter upon 
the labors of a lifetime in the face of a frowning forest reluctant 
to submit to the conquest of man ; without roads, without 
churches, without school-houses, without mills, without barns, 
without habitations of much comfort, largely without resources 


outside of themselves, without most things except their own 
strong arms and a brave and steadfast hope, these were the 
men and these the heaven-blessed women who planted organ- 
ized society in the solitude, which, until they came, had pos- 
sessed the hills and vales of Sylvester-Canada; established 
religion and social order, invested the forest with the charms of 
civilized life, and made an abode of peace, plenty, and happi- 
ness, where the solitary grandeur of nature unvexed by man 
had hitherto dwelt. How well these brave and manly spirits 
did their work the chronicles of the epoch, which we now cel- 
ebrate, declare. That they made war upon the forest and 
builded habitations for man and shelter for beasts is but small 
praise. These were but the efforts of necessity. They did 
more, immeasurably more, when they built mills, opened roads, 
established ferries, founded schools, and planted their relig- 
ious establishment on the solid foundations of the civil and 
ecclesiastical polity of the times. The parent colony, which, 
beside its lands and wealth of wilderness, had little else to 
bestow upon her swarming children, took good care to provide 
ample measures for the advancement of the great cause on 
which they had erected their edifice of society, and not less care 
to demand the full performance of ecclesiastical duty. 

And when we consider the many difficulties of their situation, 
and the many exactions upon the time and slender resources of 
pioneers planting society beyond the outmost verge of civiliza- 
tion, we can easily pardon them if our ancestors were for a 
time slow in the structure of their religious institution. Con- 
sidering all things, we may fairly conclude they were not reluc- 
tant in spirit, and that whatever there was of retardation 
was the work of necessity, not of will. They performed to the 
best of their power, and the names of Strickland and Turner, 
religious teachers of the early times, were long familiar in the 
speech of the people after those apostles had gone to the 
reward of their labors. The sturdy liberty pole of revolutionary 




sires, and the old meeting-house of the grandfathers, long after 
a more ambitious place of worship had arisen, survived in cor- 
dial association, as relics of primitive times and memorials of 
the religious and patriotic spirit of the youthful period of 
the town. Thus they laid broad and deep the foundations 
of civil and social order and of religious observance. These 
dwellers of the forest proceeded securely and builded slowly 
the humble edifice of their newly born society, and with joy, as 
the years rolled on, beheld it gradually developing in symmetry 
and strength into one of the vast fraternity of towns of which 
the republic is made. 

The original inhabitants of the town were descendants of the 
Puritan stock. Some of them had migrated from the shadow 
of Plymouth Rock. With them the love of civil and religious 
liberty was inborn. From their ancestors they had inherited 
deep and decided convictions and determined and steady pur- 
pose. Of these traits were born in them steadfast principles 
and the faculty of rigorous adherence to whatever was deemed 
to be of the obligations of duty. It is not necessary to assert 
that the Puritan was always right, or that his convictions, how- 
ever intense, were always the offspring of enlightened intelli- 
gence. In fact it was but a result in logical order and 
sequence that the very intensity of his convictions and the 
severe concentration of thought and will upon his favorite 
theme tended to make him narrow-minded, and to plant in his 
mind prejudices not well founded. Yet it was his aim always 
to follow truth and duty as his guides ; and if for want of light 
his principles at any time failed to lead him, his prejudices 
were equal to all emergencies and adequate to all needed ser- 
vice. To say the whole truth, his prejudices were as dear to 
him as his principles, and not wholly without reason, since they 
were by times of equal service to him. For his prejudices grew 
out of his honest and steadfast principles, and he knew not how 
to analyze and separate the one from the other ; in fact, he was 


delightfully unconscious of the existence of the one, and, of 
consequence, knew no distinction between the one and the 
other. And yet, it is but just to say of this historic body of 
men that if this was a fault in them, their descendants are not 
entire strangers to the same frailty ; and while we sit here to 
pass judgment upon them, and to commemorate their immortal 
achievements in the cause of human progress, we must meekly 
confess that we, descendants of Puritans, are not likely to go 
far astray for want of prejudices sturdy and potent. 

It was these inherited qualities of mind and heart which 
gave to the early inhabitants of Turner and their early descend- 
ants their character and their manner of life. A frugal industry 
marked their ways. Hence, they were enabled to subdue an 
unbroken forest, to overcome the difficulties of frontier life, 
where everything was to be created by labor out of the natural 
resources of the country, and through privations and hardship 
to attain to general thrift and competence. Their frugality 
descended to minute things. Children were taught that it was 
sinful to suffer a kernel of corn to be wasted. The pipe was 
lighted by a coal from the hearth, or by a blazing sliver first 
lighted at the open fire. The burning coals were preserved on 
the hearth over night to rekindle the fire on the following morn- 
ing. No expense of match or tinder box vexed the finances of 
the family until competence had been reached. Such was the 
diligent care of the elders. Pity it is that we have forgotten so 
many of these simple, frugal ways ; when the coming generation 
have never learned " to rake up a fire," when, indeed, the life- 
giving light upon the hearth has gone out ; when the turkey no 
longer gets the scattered kernel reclaimed with pains, or the pig 
the apple core ; when the simple pipe is discarded, and the 
devotee of the exhilarating herb, who, perhaps, never knew the 
joyous boon of labor for subsistence, strikes two or three, or 
perchance half a dozen matches to light his perfumed cigar, and 
recklessly casts the blazing stumps in the place of danger. No, 


my friend of the new generation, if you must smoke return to 
the simple pipe of pure tobacco ; if you can't bring yourself to 
that, and will smoke, light your unmedicated, unperfumed cigar 
with a single match, and carefully dispose the burning stump in 
the ancestral manner. But smoke not. Save the scattered 
kernels and the single apple core. Then you can put the ances- 
tral fire upon your hearth and learn to " rake up " the fire. 

These trivial things afford a glimpse of the practical and 
economical life of those times. From them we may understand 
much. And in a moral and religious aspect their lives were 
equally marked. Strenuous and exacting in matters of faith, 
measurably censorious and austere, in manners not over courtly 
or finely polished, they rigidly maintained the order and deco- 
rum of society by a fixed public opinion imperious and intoler- 
ant. These characteristics, with a large measure of success, 
they strove to transmit to their children and their children's 
children. And we award them not too much of honor when we 
say that the good order, morality, and intelligence, which have 
always characterized the town, and given her a high position 
among her contemporaries may be traced largely to these right 
beginnings of our ancestors, who builded their comely fabric of 
society in the wild frontier of civilized life upon these deep andl 
secure foundations of immutable canons, which, if sometimes 
made over harsh or austere in practice, nevertheless draw their 
inspiration from the only true source of human excellence, the 
only sound and enduring basis of human society. All else is 
fragile and perishable, this immortal. 

And I speak not of the men alone of the early period. I 
plead also for the sacred memory of the mothers of that time, 
without whose joint heroism and co-operating service the sacri- 
fices of the fathers would have been lost. I speak not from 
history and tradition alone when I venture to employ the lan- 
guage of eulogy in praise of the women of the early inhabitants 
of the town. It was my own good fortune in the days of my 


youth to know some of them at that time rapidly passing within 
the veil to their eternal reward. The daughters of these worthy 
women I knew as the mothers of my early associates, and 
though it was not their lot to have been tried by the same 
experiences, they had yet inherited the excellences of the 
mothers, and from them learned to walk in paths of peaceful 
duty and honor, diffusing around them the benign rays of peace 
and contentment, and training their sons and daughters to lives 
of virtue, usefulness, and felicity. 

The world little notes, and the more is the pity, the heroism 
of woman's life. We speak of the toilers on whom rests the 
great burden of the world, — from whom springs eternal the 
elements of that life and strength to which we owe the vigor 
and duration of our race. We are dazzled and intoxicated 
with the splendor of military exploits and the achievements of 
warfare. We honor with applause and renown the bravery and 
prowess of the valiant soldier ; and him who has sustained the 
shock of armies and distinguished himself by half an hour's 
exposure and exertion, we call a hero. But what is all this 
glory and honor of the pomp and splendor and heroic exertion 
of warfare as compared with the lives, and the lifelong endurance 
of the vast majority of the women of the land, — the mothers of 
a nation ? 

The hero is a hero because he has bravely encountered trav- 
ail and danger, bravely suffered wounds, disability, or death, or 
encountered the dangers of them. It may not be a small thing 
for the patriot heart to die for his country. It may not be easy 
for him to incur danger in her cause. But in what is this more 
than the mothers of a nation are doing daily? Do they not 
stand in their lot and calmly accept even death as the fruit of 
their relations to society as mothers, as heads of families ? 
Amid all the toils, the vigils, the sacrifices, the privations, the 
anxieties, the dangers, and the nameless burdens incident to 
the lives of the mothers of our land, are they not the perpetual 


fountain of love ever flowing forth to " make glad the city of 
God?" In the midst of pangs ever ready to bless? Under 
the burden of many toils of body and mind ever cheerful to 
afford solace ? And the chief dignity of woman's woes is that 
in the main they are endured in silence, — pangs unrecorded, 
sorrows unspoken ; we are therefore at liberty to say that the 
chief heroism is practiced by the women of the nation who are 
unknown to fame. And although it be not emblazoned on 
stone or embalmed in history, its merits ought to be realized, 
its memory consecrated in our hearts. 

Of this mold were the women of the early period of the 
town ; and to their courage and fortitude, and heroic daring 
and endurance alike with the robust and stalwart virtues of 
the men, are we indebted for the early, the well-laid founda- 
tions of society in the town. Such were, such are, such always 
have been the mothers of Turner, by whom the better elements 
of character have been enstamped upon successive generations 
to the present time. 

And it may be, in justice it must be added, that the women of 
the olden times of Turner were of those commended by the 
wise man, those who " seek wool and flax, and work willingly 
with their hands." They knew little of the harpsichord and the 
lute, but they were familiar with the distaff and the loom. The 
toils of women, in times when the chief articles of apparel and 
the principal part of all textile fabrics of household use were 
produced on the farm, are little understood now that the spin- 
ning-jenny and the cotton-mill, the inventions of Arkwright and 
Hargrave, and the host of inventors who have followed them, 
have changed all these conditions of domestic life. It is fit 
that the wives and daughters of this generation rejoice that the 
wonderful achievements in the mechanical arts, made within the 
hundred years since their great-grandmothers delved with their 
masculine help-meets and toiled at the distaff and the spindle 
to send down to them a rich inheritance, have relieved them 


of untold drudgery, and of consequence have given them 
the more time and strength for self- culture and the study of 
the polite accomplishments. And the public reports of the 
industries of Turner afford gratifying assurance that if the hum 
of the spindle and the clack of the loom are no longer heard in 
their houses, as, thanks to the times they need not, they are no 
strangers to those less poetical, but equally honorable emblems 
of industry, the churn and the cheese-press. An accomplished 
woman of wise industry is one of the glories of this mortal life, 
one of the highest embellishments of our being ; reaching forth 
her hand to the needy, affording counsel and comfort to the weak 
and the unfortunate, deft in every domestic art and duty, *' she 
openeth her mouth with wisdom, and in her tongue is the law 
of kindness." Go on, respected matron, to adorn the paths of 
industrious peace, conscious of dignity and worth, and it shall 
be said of you, " Many daughters have done virtuously, but 
thou excellest them all." 

This is but a rapid and incomplete commentary sketch of 
things which have passed into the history of a hundred years, 
and somewhat more. In it we find instruction, and trace there 
the origin and progress of the present well-being of the town 
and of those who have gone forth from its hearths and orderly, 
virtuous homes to fight the battle of life on other fields. The 
orderly state of society, and the general prevalence of a high 
morality, which has always characterized the town, attest the 
innate character of the people. We find in the almshouses, 
the hospitals, or the prisons of the country, few, if any, who 
had their birth in the town of Turner. And among the men 
of the country in the various departments of industry or of 
business, or in the professions, or in official station, we find 
many natives of the town, men and women, in good standing 
and condition. These facts are fairly to be imputed to the 
robust principles of religion and morality cherished by the early 
ancestors, and by them actively inculcated and enforced and 


transmitted to and through their descendants, and to the con- 
stant, scrupulous, and rigorous training to industry. A deep 
and strong religious sentiment pervaded the people of the town 
in the early times, and perhaps none the less to the present 
time. Differences of opinion the fathers had, which but 
declared the earnestness of their convictions and the depth of 
their zeal. Yet amid all the differences of opinion and con- 
troversies, there was in the formative periods of the town, and 
subsequently has been, a widely spread and deeply seated 
religious sense, which, without cant, and, it is verily believed, 
with the least hypocrisy ever known, impressed itself on the 
character of the people. 

Such then were the early fathers of the town and their worthy 
consorts, and such the spring and the seeds of a century's local 
history. It is a solemn contemplation to cast back a hundred 
years and view the deeds of those who then walked these vales, 
who builded the foundations and the superstructure of this 
community, and whose memory is dear to our hearts. They 
sleep the sleep of the just. We would not that the doings of 
this day should disturb their repose. Nor may we venture to 
hope that our feeble applause of what they did here can enhance 
the beauty or the joy of their rest. Yet who shall say that the 
ascended spirits of our ancestry, heroes and patriots all, may 
not now be hovering over the scene of this presence to view 
the works which have followed their own labors and sacrifices, 
with plaudits, which our ears of flesh have no faculty to hear ? 

The time allotted to me does not allow a full discussion of 
the relations of the town to the republic. Yet I would fain say 
somewhat more. If we bear in mind that the town is no more 
nor less than one of the integral elements of the national exist- 
ence, all working together to constitute one general whole, one 
for all and all for one, we shall readily see the importance of a 
sound public sentiment, and a careful and wise administration of 
local affairs, and of local measures to advance the intelligence 


and promote the orderly conduct of the people. Such institu- 
tions our ancestors received from their fathers, and transmitted 
them to their descendants expecting them to bequeath them to 
their posterity in indefinite succession. 

The careful management of the affairs of the town instructs 
and trains the people to attend and control the affairs of the 
State. And the administration of the affairs of the State 
enables them to understand and guard their rights under the 
national polity and administration. Hence it follows that every 
citizen, who would perform his entire obligations in his political 
relations, should strive to be an honest and intelligent states- 
man, watching carefully local affairs, participating actively and 
honestly in the proceedings of the town-meeting. The town 
meeting I claim to be an essential institution of a republic, — 
the town-meeting or its equivalent in some other form. It is 
the school of statesmen. It is the place where the individual 
learns to make his voice heard, and to exert his power as one of 
the people. It is the training-school where he learns the logic 
of argument and the art of debate. Temperate exercise causes 
development and firmness of muscle. And the exercise of the 
powers of freemen makes freemen strong. 

It is not too much to say of the good old New England insti- 
tution that it was the remote cause of the Declaration of 
Independence. They, who have read the full and impartial 
details of the progress of the great cause, must be aware that 
without the immortal John Adams independence would have 
been long delayed, — probably one or more generations. And 
John Adams learned the art of forensic debate, the tactics of 
deliberative bodies, and the rudiments of statecraft in the town- 
meetings of Braintree and Boston. Here he acquired strength 
and self-reliance as to public affairs. He and his colleagues 
went to the Continental Congress under a cloud of suspicion on 
the part of the Middle States and some of the Southern States 
against Massachusetts and Boston, and against her suspected 


schemes of separation from the crown. Beginning with mod- 
esty and moderation, and growing with the rising exigency, his 
bold courage, his ardor, his invincible logic inspired such men 
as Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry. There the training 
received in the town-meeting became of vital importance to him 
and his country, when by oft-repeated debates on many points 
in session, and more sedulous labors in private, he and his 
coadjutors and supporters, aided by the lessons of Lexington 
and Bunker Hill, were able to carry the Declaration against a 
powerful pressure in 1776. Otherwise the day, which then 
became transcendently and immortally glorious, would have 
continued to hold a place in the calendar, and no more. 

It may be said that independence was the logical destiny of 
the colonies. And so it was. Three millions of people in spite 
of oppression growing to six, or twelve, or twenty millions, 
would have fallen away from the crown at last, as the ripened 
fruit falls from its parent stalk. But it is yet a historical truth 
that but few of the contemporaries of John Adams, at the 
beginning of the Revolution, dared to think of anything but 
mild resistance to be employed to induce respect for the laws 
and to scare or coerce the king to better treatment of his Amer- 
ican subjects. The town-meetings also were the organs of the 
people, in the beginning without other government, through 
which they acted under the inspiration of Adams and the other 
bold leaders in the inauguration of revolutionary measures. 
And the act of separation is so far due to the bold and 
advanced opinions, to the bold and intrepid exertions, the skill 
in parliamentary tactics and debate of that illustrious, immortal 
patriot, that without him, his generation, at least, would have 
lived and died as British subjects. So we can but justly affirm 
that the school of the town-meeting, where John Adams received 
the most important part of his training, both prepared and 
enabled the people to assert their liberties, and provided for 

them a successful champion. 


The lesson of this history would seem to be that the town- 
meeting should be cultivated with care and attended with 
punctuality as the training-school of freemen, where the citizen 
should learn to deliberate with decorum and prudence, and 
decide from intelligent conviction and not from the blind zeal 
of an untutored will, or an easy deference to the will of others. 
I love the memory of the town-meetings of my youthful days, 
when Judge Prince, then known as Major Prince, used to 
preside with his usual tact and ability ; when Capt. Pompelly 
was accustomed to deliver his annual speech against the 
pitiless practice then prevalent in the country of setting up the 
support of the paupers at auction in open town-meeting ; when 
Mr. Bray was neither afraid nor ashamed to express his views 
with freedom and ardor; and when that then distinguished citizen 
and memorable genius, Joseph House, was wont, as the spirit 
warmed in his thoughtful breast, to edify the boys with the 
piety and profound philosophy of his preaching. Peace to the 
ashes of poor Joe. No doubt it may be said with truth that 
the town-meeting is the source whence many a youth has drawn 
his first inspiration. 

Let the worshiper at the shrine of the republic keep alive 
the assemblies of the people and there promote the utmost 
freedom of action. Thus did our Puritan fathers ; thus have 
done their posterity in your town and your sister towns, all 
drawing their true inspiration of free dom and obedience to law 
and duty from the same origin ; thus it is fit that we all continue 
to do, remembering that we have a country to save or to lose, 
and forgetting not that no nation has any guaranty of the 
endurance of its institutions without the steadfast support of a 
virtuous and enlightened people. 

The time will come when another century shall have rolled 
around, and on the recurrence of this joyous anniversary, other 
prophets shall stand upon this rostrum and hold the ears of the 
people to judge the present generation as we now judge the 


past, in praise or censure. We stand not before the world 
alone as witnesses of the grand spectacle of a great people 
successfully exercising the art of self government. We stand 
also before the future of a vast posterity to arise in endless suc- 
cession, who will rejudge the judgment of today, rising up to 
render homage to the memory of us and our ancestr}^, or to 
deplore the folly and the weakness which shall have made a 
wreck of the hope of humanity. We stand before the future of 
the civilized world, who hold a joint right in the inheritance of 
a high example designed for the instruction of mankind. 

Hence we may strive to realize the grandeur and imipensity 
of the trust in our hands, and perhaps deplore the evidences 
that we are in some measure falling away from the better part 
of the austere principles and wholesome practices of the fathers. 
And if we are ever inclined to smile at the errors of the Puritan, 
it is well to remember that his faults leaned to the good ; that 
whatever is great, whatever is beautiful, whatever is beneficent 
in our institutions, traces back its ultimate origin to him and 
the Christian patriots of similar mold among his contemporaries. 
And the Puritan is happy above all men in this, that even his 
mistakes have tended to the welfare of his posterity. 

By these contemplations we see God in history, and, as Chris- 
tian patriots, learn :o adore the overruling care of Him who led 
his people in the wilderness by the cloud by day, and the pillar 
of fire by night, remembering that God helps those who help 
themselves. Emphatically, He helps those who help Him 
And if we desire the intervention of Divine Providence to 
promote our national welfare and national existence, we must 
not forget that he can work only through the minds and hearts 
of the people ; that these, therefore, must be attuned in harmony 
with Him. Not prayers alone, not faith alone, but works we 
must give in co-operation with Divine Power ; and to the end 
that He may work for us, we must work for Him. 

Having derived our origin from an essentially religious peo- 


pie, I may have your pardon when I speak of matters of faith 
in their bearing on secular affairs. I would not offend by too 
much freedom of speech ; but the occasion is too great, the 
hour is too solemn, and its ministries too sacred to permit the 
language of adulation, or indiscriminate eulogy. And, in truth, 
it must be said that it is but too obvious that religious faith has 
somewhat declined among the men of the country. Yet she 
still holds her refuge in the hearts of the women. And in behalf 
oi the future, and in the interests of good citizenship, we may 
safely appeal to them whose heroism and fidelity to duty have 
been but too faintly eulogized, and especially to the mothers of the 
nation for an active and effective co-operation with the fathers 
in the molding of those who are to follow them. When we 
remember the power of the maternal instinct over the offspring, 
when we consider that the infant citizen in the mother's lap 
drinks in the maternal influence as he draws his sustenance 
from the pure fountain, that her teachings and her thoughts 
sink deep in his receptive mind and make their impression 
there for a lifetime, that the unuttered language of her heart 
and the unspoken words of her mind go forth to him as an 
inspiration to form and fix his character and determine his con- 
duct; when we see the weary and wayworn mother patiently 
soothing the tired child to his rest, chanting from the depths of 
a weary spirit, in simple phrase, the great lessons of life and of 
manhood, we know that our country has a destiny, the republic 
an immortal hope. Tossed perhaps by storms of doubt and 
desolation, there we find a harbor of refuge, a haven of hope. 

And you, matrons and maidens, I exhort, if need were, I 
would implore you to consider that you are or are to become the 
mothers of men, or the adjuncts and coadjutors of the mothers 
of men, who are to be the keepers of a nation's weal. Rejoice 
in the exalted boon which Providence has laid upon you as his 
instruments in molding a nation's destinies to honor and felicity. 
As God needed, and therefore raised up and trained to his ser- 


vice, a Moses, a Caesar, a Washington, a Napoleon, so no less 
has He placed you in your lot as chosen vessels of His will and 
His purposes. Not one, mother or maiden, but shall have her 
proper function in the great work, and share the duty and the 
glory of her sex if she will but hear the call. 

The republic is upon its trial on high. The great horologue 
of time solemnly and sublimely tolls the years, while God and 
His purpose await the answer to His requisition for service upon 
the women of America. And so shall you, ever moving forward 
in the grand march of time, and ever rising upward, consecrate 
yourselves to the great cause of human progress. So shall you 
become the blessed instruments of Divine Providence in the 
development of a nation's greatness. So shall your own works 
adorn your lives, and a grateful posterity shall arise to decorate 
your memory. 

JUDGE Wilson's address. 

Mr. President^ Ladies and Gentlemen : — 

Ninety and nine times have the anniversary moments come 
and gone, the anniversary of that dauntless energy and indom- 
itable will, which leaving all those things that to us seem to 
beautify and adorn life and render it worth living, dared to 
plunge into the trackless forest, with the axe in one hand and 
the gun in the other, there to make the rude homes of the brave 
pioneers, and lay strong and deep the foundations of this goodly 
town. Ninety and nine times in succession since then have the 
warm rains and gentle breath of spring unlocked the icy fetters 
of winter, and released the earth from its cold and close 
embrace. Ninety and nine times since that frail beginning 
have the buds unfolded, the blossoms appeared, and been fol- 
lowed by the fruit, which, under the hallowing and ripening 
influence of the autumn suns, has reached a glorious and per- 
fect maturity. Ninety and nine times has this all been followed 
by the cold hand and killing breath of winter. Today, we 


celebrate the hundredth anniversary. The buds and blossoms 
and incipient fruit have again appeared, and adorn the earth 
with their beauty and fragrance, to be again followed, we trust, 
by a plentiful and bountiful harvest. The bright skies which 
arch o'er us are filled with golden sunlight, bearing rich stores 
of food for growth and increase, to the swelling fruit. 

Amid this beauty and grandeur, on this fair July day we have 
assembled at the call of our native town, coming from all 
quarters of this great land of ours ; not only from our fair New 
England homes, but also from the far distant South and the 
broad prairies of the West. However far her sons may have 
wandered, however long they may have been absent, however 
separated in life they may have been from her, on this her 
anniversary day their thoughts and hearts turn fondly toward 
her. We come a motley throng. Some laden with honors and 
wearing on our brows the chaplet of fame, others wearied in 
the ceaseless struggle and anxious for rest, and still others of 
us return like prodigal sons, prepared to be thankful for a seat 
among the servants, but we all receive a royal welcome. The 
fatted calf is killed, the feast is spread, and all are given seats 
around the banquet table, while our mother town, with head 
adorned with the glories of a hundred summers, and whitened 
with the snows of a hundred winters, stretches forth her arms 
and gives us a true maternal welcome. 

It is fit on such an occasion as this that we should rejoice, 
and that our hearts should be filled with great gladness. We 
can today catch the faint echo of our boyish shouts still linger- 
ing among the hills and valleys of old Turner. Age has only 
increased her loveliness. There are no wrinkles about her 
heart. It beats with the freshness of perennial youth. It is 
only the outward form that shows the lapse of years. Old age 
is at all times sacred, but when that age is simply the sum and 
substance of good deeds and a life moving in a regular and 
illustrious course of virtue, then it becomes more than sacred* 


it becomes honorable and venerable. It is with such feelings 
that we regard our native town of Turner. We honor her for 
her pure unspotted record, and venerate her as the place where 
good and honorable men and women have lived and died. The 
fragrance of their memory clings around her still, and as the 
sentiments of honor and veneration exalt the mind, we are 
lifted up, as it were, by such contemplation to grander thoughts 
and nobler life. 

A few days ago, the wires flashed across the ocean the intel- 
ligence that our sister Republic of France had passed an act 
exiling all her so-called princes, descendants of the royal fami- 
lies who had in former times ruled over her, and the papers 
were full to overflowing with descriptions of their sorrowful and 
pathetic departure from their native country. It was a cruel 
act, and an unwise and foolish one from whatever standpoint 
you view it. In marked distinction from this is the action of 
that municipality whose hundredth birthday we celebrate today. 
She not only strives to retain the Princes she has, but would 
gladly welcome back any wandering Princes. Her citizens are 
not all Solons^ but the spirit of the wise Lawgiver has descended 
upon them, and they recognize the fact that no country can 
afford to part with good men and faithful citizens, be they 
of royal race, or unknown lineage, unused to toil, or skilled in 
driving them steers. 

Standing at the end of the first century of the town, we 
involuntarily cast our eyes backward and seek to view the 
past. The later years are seen in the broad sunlight of midday, 
but as we go further back the shadows deepen, the twilight 
thickens, until as we approach the end, the darkness gathers. 
Such age would seem to be the merest childhood, when com- 
pared with the age of those ancient monuments which have 
looked out over the sands of Egypt for thousands of years, but 
measuring age by the good wrought to our fellow-men, by purity 
of life, and faithful labors in the great cause of humanity, and 


not by the mere lapse of years, the comparison would not be 
so manifestly unequal. New England ideas of religious liberty, 
free education, freedom to all, have gone forth and permeated 
not only this wide land, but most quarters of the globe, and my 
faith in the truth of such ideas, and in the power and gracious- 
ness of an overruling Providence, is so strong that I believe 
their sway will grow wider and wider, until it embraces the 
whole earth. These ideas are the outgrowth of New England 
intelligence and culture, and have been the mainspring of the 
actions and lives of the inhabitants of this town. As our eyes 
turn backward, we see standing out prominently in the history 
of the town for these hundred years, the famous men of the 
town and the notable deeds accomplished by them. I will not 
attempt to enumerate them. It is not my province to sing their 
praises today. Eulogies of them and their deeds will be heard 
on every hand. They are the men and deeds which give honor 
and character to a town, as the world goes, but I wish to go 
deeper than this mere superficial view. I wish to give honor 
where honor is due. I wish to call up before you today the mem- 
ories of those men and women whom the world has not called 
great or famous, but who, in this goodly town, have lived and 
died, doing within the narrow walks of their daily life their duty 
to God and man. Honorable and faithful to the few trusts 
committed to them, their lives were redolent of purity and vir- 
tue, and their sweet memories, embalmed in the hearts of their 
fellow-citizens, were their grandest monuments. It is this class 
of men and women that constitute the strength and beauty of 
the land. From among them spring those whom we term the 
great men of their day, men, who by the exercise of some power 
or advantage, have lifted themselves or been lifted above the 
mass of their fellows. From their solitary position they tower 
aloft, and are seen and admired of all men, just as the spire of 
a grand monument is seen and admired more than the founda- 
tions of the superstructure. Judging by the eye alone, the spire 


constitutes the whole of the monument, but the good, strong 
foundation is as essential to the monument, and really contrib- 
utes as much to its strength and glory, as the towering spire 
pointing heavenward. To apply this illustration to the human 
edifice, these honest, God-fearing, and God-loving men and 
women constitute the broad, substantial, and sound foundation 
upon which the whole superstructure of our civil and religious 
liberty rests, and while that superstructure is adorned with 
many lofty spires and glittering minarets, which attract the eye 
and please the fancy, yet if they were not supported by these 
firm foundations they would fall and crumble in ruins. It is 
not given to every man to be a great man, but goodness often 
outranks greatness, even in the present life, while the triumph- 
ant declaration comes pealing down the ages, 

" He has put down the mighty from their seat, 
And hath exalted them of low degree." 

The man upon whose tombstone can be truthfully written, 
" faithful unto the end," is a noble man, whether the world calls 
him great or not. Let us be careful then in our judgment, and 
not measure men wholly by the eye. I repeat, let us give honor 
where honor is due. 

•"T is greatly wise to talk with our past hours, 
And ask them what report they bore to heaven." 

Not only is this true of the contemplation of our own past, but 
also of the contemplation of past ages. It is of advantage just 
in proportion as we draw therefrom correct ideas of duty and 
responsibility, and weave those ideas into the woof and warp 
of our actual life. Life has been well described as a pilgrimage 
up a steep and toilsome ascent in which the successes and 
failures of others form beacon lights to guide us on our way. 
Every step of progress is made by climbing up over the failures 
of those who have sunk down fainting by the wayside. And in 
pauses, such as this of today, in the weary struggle up the hill 
of life, when we turn around, and resting at our ease look back 


adown the long vista of the past, not only upon the small past 
covered by our own lives, but over the advance accomplished 
in the years preceding, it seems fit that we should, if possible, 
each one for himself, draw true lessons therefrom. The lives of 
these good men and women of Turner furnish striking examples 
for us. They were careful to be right, and consistently and 
conscientiously firm when a conclusion was reached. Standing 
today on the border line between two centuries, and looking 
back on their calm, peaceful, and happy lives, which begun, con- 
tinued, and ended within the boundaries of this quiet town, the 
conviction insensibly but surely steals over us, that the great foe 
to the happiness and comfort of the American people is the wild 
and insane struggle for wealth. Everything is brought and 
freely laid on this sacrificial altar, — health, comfort, happiness, 
and even life itself, and alas, often in vain, and the remaining 
years are embittered by wild longings and vain regrets. Our 
American life is conducted largely on the high pressure principle, 
everything is whirled along with startling rapidity, and even 
those who would fain resist this tendency are borne along by the 
mighty rush and swirl of the current. A large proportion of 
the American people, instead of promoting and encouraging 
the beauties and graces of life, willingly run them down with 
railroad and steamboat, or crush them to atoms between the 
massive cogwheels of our factories. I call attention to this 
tendency of the age, that the young men and fair maidens I see 
before me, may realize from the lives I have been describing 
the important truth that true comfort and happiness may be 
found as well within the borders of your own town, as at any 
other place. Stick to your native town, young men. Become 


" Type of the wise, who soar but do not roam, 
True to the kindred points of heaven and home." 

As the evening shades shall bring these exercises to a close, 
many of us will pass from these scenes to other towns, there to 


take up again the thread of our daily life, but I leave with each 
one of you the wish that your life may be so unsullied, that at 
its close you may be deserving of a better tribute than I have 
been able to offer today to those citizens of my native town who 
are unknown to fame. 

HON. E. B. Washburn's address. 

Mr. President'. — 

I beg leave to recall to you a certain incident. When you 
did me the honor to invite me to be present on this occasion, 
you were kind enough to say that I should not be called upon 
to take any part in the exercises against my inclination. I am 
certain that I did not expect that a gentleman so well known, 
and so much respected by all the people of Turner, and in fact 
by all the people of Maine, would break his word to me on this 
occasion. When he told me that I should not be expected to 
make a speech, I concluded that I might safely run down from 
Port Royal, which was the original name of Livermore, to 
Sylvester-Canada, which you know was the original name of 

I have made in my life — you will all see it has been a very 
short one — as many speeches as any white man should ever 
make. I have not only made a great many public speeches, 
but I have made a good many private speeches, both to gentle- 
men, and I may say to ladies, and so far as the latter are 
concerned, I do not think that I ever gained much so far as 
the returns have come in from the back towns. But I could 
not conceal or suppress the strong desire I felt to be present 
here today, and to meet so many people of my native State, 
and, I might say, of my own neighborhood, the neighborhood 
of my nativity. And when I look around me and see all these 
strong and stalwart men, and all of these beautiful and gracious 
women, I feel that no one can blame me for desiring to be here 
today. For I am interested in all that concerns the history of 


Maine, and especially of that locality in Maine in which I was 
raised. I have always been proud of my native State ; I have 
always been proud of her history. And, Mr. President, if I 
ever forget or forsake that dear all-mother of ours, Maine, may 
this strong right arm fall from my shoulder blade, and my 
tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth. I love the history of 
my native State. I love her grand mountains and her great 
lakes. I love her fir clad hills and her smiling valleys, and I 
love her tall pines and her strong oaks. I revere her history, 
going back to old colonial times, the times of Sir William 
Phips, of whom Mr. French spoke, and of Mr. Pepperill. And 
you men of Maine will remember that there were but two men 
knighted by the mother country, in New England, and those 
two men were natives of Maine, William Phips of Woolwich, 
and William Pepperill of Kittery. 

I remember, coming down to a later time, two of the greatest 
men who were ever born in Maine, Rufus King of Scarborough, 
and George Evans of Hallowell, and in that opinion I believe 
my friend. Governor Perham, will agree with me. And I will 
come down to later times even, and I trust I may be excused if 
I refer to Oxford County, my native county, and indulge in a 
certain pride in the men of that county. I need not tell you 
that the first lawyer that ever settled in this village was Ezekiel 
Whitman, who came here in the midst of a blinding snow storm 
on the 7th of May, 1799. Every citizen of Turner will be 
proud to recollect that Judge Whitman, who achieved so much 
honor as a jurist, and who was one of the glories of the State 
of Maine, lived here in your village. And I might come down 
to the present moment and mention one of the most prominent 
men of the time, whose name is upon all your lips. Turner 
gave him to the country. You anticipate me when I say Eugene 
Hale, Senator of the United States from the State of Maine, a 
man so distinguished for his character, for his conspicuous 
ability, for his great knowledge of public affairs, saying nothing 
of the loyalty which he has always shown (applause). 


These are some of the glories of Turner. And, sir, my friend 
here at my left, although he may possibly be a little younger 
than I, will recollect the time when the country towns like 
Turner used to give the great men to the State, and I wish it 
were so today; I wish the country held its own against the 
town. In those days it was at the cross roads, at the four 
corners, that your great lawyers settled, like Judge Whitman, 
like General Fessenden at New Gloucester, and Simon Green- 
lief at New Gloucester, and would lay deep and broad founda- 
tions for their future success in their profession in the quiet of 
country life. In those times everybody did not seem to desire 
to rush to the centers of population ; they were content to live 
in the country, and to be a part of the country. And it is my 
pride and boast, Mr. President, that my father lived sixty-seven 
years in your adjoining town on the very spot where I was 
born ; and he was contented with his lot, and, like the parson 
as described by Goldsmith, " he never changed nor wished to 
change his place " ; he was contented to live in the country. 
And I wish it were so at the present time ; I wish the people 
would remain more in the country and not go away from their 
homes, because the country is the place. You strike out the 
country towns of Maine and what would be left ? I do not 
know why the people of Maine should not be satisfied. You 
have the most glorious summer climate in the United States, 
and I am glad to know that the people all over the country 
begin to appreciate it, and come here every summer in increas- 
ing numbers. And your winters, they tell a great deal about 
your winters, and I think sometimes the people of Maine them- 
selves are foremost in depreciating the State and talking about 
the severity of the winters. Our fathers and our mothers lived 
here summers and winters alike, and if we cannot do it, I think 
we are a pretty poor set of creatures. The winters are not so 
bad ; they are cold, as a matter of course, but I observe you 
have fine warm houses, and at every fireside in the winter time 


there sit enthroned intelligence and virtue and progress. And 
when the genial spring comes kindly on, after the repose of 
winter, all are ready for the duties of summer. And in Maine, 
I believe, there is as much true happiness as there is anywhere 
that I have ever been. And my faith is shown somewhat by 
my works, for every time I can get to Maine I am certain to 
come, and I intend to come as long as I can get money enough 
to pay my expenses. Let the people of Maine be satisfied ; let 
them be contented to remain at home. They have happy 
homes, good government, good town government, which Judge 
Gilbert spoke of so much to my gratification, and I would not 
want to see it changed. These country people, however they 
may be regarded in the city by the men who wear stovepipe 
hats, and tall collars, and squeaky boots, are a pretty good set 
of fellows, and I hope to see them hold their own, and more 
than their own, and go forward and not backward. It is of 
public importance that the country towns should be kept up, for 

" 111 fares the land, to hastening ills a prey, 
Where wealth accumulates and men decay. 

But a bold peasantry, their country's pride, 
When once destroyed can never be supplied." 

I am delighted to be able to be present here, even for a few 
hours. It has renewed my love for my native State, and my 
hopes for its prosperity and its happiness. I am delighted at 
what I have seen here today. I am more than delighted with 
the display which has been made here today ; and, for one, I 
shall carry with me to my distant home the most agreeable 
souvenirs of this interesting occasion. And I know, having 
enjoyed ourselves as we have, we will all agree, if we are alive, 
to return on a similar occasion in 19S6. And if we shall see 
as much improvement as we have seen in the century gone by, 
I presume we will have the same contentment that we have 
today, and the same desire, remembering all of the experiences 
of today, to come back here just one century hence. 



Ladies and Gentlemen : — 

I have come a long way to meet old friends. My father's 
family was born in the southern portion of this town, and as a 
family we are all here today, numbering six, one-half of whom 
have passed their threescore years and ten, and by reason of 
strength are approaching their fourscore years. I am next to 
the youngest of the family. We meet around the family board 
probably for the last time. And, coming here after an absence 
of forty odd years, it is a very great pleasure to me to meet so 
many that I used to know. There is, with me, a mingling of 
sadness as well as of joy ; joy to see so many, and sadness to 
see and feel that so many have passed away. I am not accus- 
tomed to make public speeches, though I have had the honor, 
as was suggested by your president, to be the governor of the 
great State of Iowa. I never attained that honor by making 
any public speeches. I was asked by a gentleman last winter, 
while I was in California, how it was possible for a man to get 
to be governor of Iowa and not make a speech. I told him 
that was probably the reason I got the position, that if I had 
made a speech I might not have been so fortunate. 

I remember of reading, three years ago, some remarks of 
Hannibal Hamlin when he met with the sons of Maine at 
Chicago. He said that more great men had gone out of 
Oxford County than any other county in the world, and he 
mentioned about twenty of them ; but fortunately or unfortu- 
nately he did not mention me, so I concluded I was not so 
great a man after all. Ladies and gentlemen, I thank you very 
much indeed for bringing about this grand meeting, and now I 
bid you goodby. Goodby, John ; goodby, Henry ; goodby, 
Louisa, and a hundred such names I might mention ; I bid you 
all goodby. 



Mr. President, and Fellow-citizens of My Native Town : — 

I thank you for this kind greeting. Although I have been 
an errant son for more than thirty years, there is a warm place 
in my heart for the friends of my boyhood. There is no spot 
on God's green earth that I love as I do my old home, and this 
grand old town on the banks of the beautiful Androscoggin. 
Every drop of water that flows in that dear old river, from the 
lake to Merrymeeting Bay, is sacred to me. The very sight of 
the old river is sufficient to call up all the memories of the past, 
and to moisten and make green all the withered leaves about the 
recollections of my youth. It carries me back to the time when 
I sported on its banks, and paddled my frail raft on its crystal 
waters, and waded neck deep to gather the pale lilies that were 
as white as the driven snow, and as pure as the dreams of 
sleeping innocence. I am confused by thousands of childish 
recollections that rush upon me at this time. I see before me 
a cyclorama on which is painted every event of my early life. 

*' And memory paints raptures that manhood in vain 
"Would barter the wealth of the world to regain, 
And clothes with a halo of beauty and truth 
The friends of his boyhood, the home of his youth." 

I see in the foreground of the picture the green in front of 
the old homestead and the hill in the rear. I see the barn> 
the orchard, the garden, the hay-mow on which I used to land 
when I turned somersaults from the great beam overhead. I 
can see the old stump on the bank of the river where I caught 
my first minnow. I can see all the green hills, fields, woods, 
the creeks, bogs, lakes, rivers, and rivulets, from Auburn to 
Livermore, from the great river to the western stream. I see 
little school children in the dewy morn picking roses by the 
roadside to give to their teacher. 

The scene changes from the season of the year when all 
nature is robed in her loveliest apparel, to the season of. the 


year when vegetable life is held in the icy fangs of a northern 
winter. I see boys and girls sliding and skating on the ice 
covered ponds and rivers. I see sleds shooting down snow 
covered hills. I see snow banks by the roadside printed by the 
frolicsome forms of schoolboys. I see in the hazy distance the 
graves of loved ones. I see still further in the dim distance 
a monumental pile with its shaft piercing the very sky, built out 
of the solid gratitude of the best spirits of Turner, and sacred 
to the memory of those far-seeing men, who endowed this town 
with the school fund. 

I see before me men and women, whose hairs are silvered by 
the circling years, and whose lineal marks are cut deep by the 
anxious cares of life, whom I once knew when their cheeks 
were radiant with the glow of health and the Wush of modest 


Mr. President^ and Ladies and Gentlemen : — 

My Friends of Turner: — I am very glad to be here. I 
am very glad to add my voice to this noble celebration. The 
memories of Turner and the intimacies of Turner are some of 
the most gracious and blesssed things of my life. I was born 
within half a mile of where I now stand. My father was born 
there, and lived there seventy-two years. My grandfather lived 
there fifty-six years. So that within that orbit of time, every 
memory, every scene of that old farm is made sacred and 
memorable to me. Mr. President, as the historical orator this 
morning was describing in his careful, suggestive, and interes t- 
ing manner the past events of Turner, I was thinking how many 
things are beyond the realm of recorded history. How many 
things, the most sacred to you and to me, who have lived in 
Turner and who have gone out from Turner, are beyond the 
realm of recorded history, because they are the things that per. 
tain to life, to the growth of thought, to the growth of character 



to the growth of things that are making this town great, noble, and 
memorable today. Mr. President, who can describe historically 
what the old fall schools have done for Turner ? Think of it ! 
Who can describe what the fall schools have done for Turner 
simply by saying who the teachers were, simply by dwelling 
upon the important function that the school exerted in the 
history of Turner .<* There are things deeper than that. They 
were the things that organized the thought of the people ; they 
were the circles from which have gone out all the culture and 
all the thought that are making Turner a historical town today, 
a well-educated town today, a town which is sending her men 
and women all over the world to be religious teachers and 
educational teachers in the world of thought and the history of 
the times. Who can describe, Mr. President, what the town- 
meetings of Turner have done, those town-meetings presided 
over so many years by your honored father, Hon. Job Prince ? 
Who can conceive what a stimulus was given by those debates 
that I as a boy have heard in those town-meetings, where the 
men rose and expressed themselves with all the earnestness, 
with all the vigor that any of us have ever heard in any legis- 
lative assembly since ? 

Who can describe what the grand homes of Turner have 
done for the town } Who can describe, by saying who the 
fathers and mothers were, by describing historically those 
houses and those homes — who can elaborate and describe 
their potent effect throughout the past history of the town, and 
throughout the future ? 

But, Mr. President, I do not intend to make a speech ; I am 
here simply to add my word, to say how glad I am to be here, 
how glad I have been all day to shake the hands of old com- 
rades and schoolmates of mine, and of my father and mother 
of the past ; and I can only add what the eloquent orator just 
before me has said, — stay in Turner; and I will presume to 
add to that, if you do not stay in Turner, stay true to the moral 


and religious lessons of Turner; stay true to the lessons of 
these homes, and of these fathers and mothers for all time to 


Mr. President., and Ladies and Gentlemen : — 

Today has reminded me of one of the pleasantest things that 
I ever remember, and that is the Thanksgiving reunion when 
all of us used to go home to grandfather's, and when grand- 
mother always let us do just what we wanted to. We children 
had a good time and a good dinner. Well, we have now come 
home today to our mother. She has arrived at her one hun- 
dredth year, a venerable old lady. She has invited us all home, 
and we have come from near and from far; we have come two 
or three thousand strong, and the old lady must excuse us if we 
have been letting ourselves out and having a good time. And 
right here I want to ask the pardon of these able men and 
women who have so well entertained us by their historical 
addresses and by the beautiful poems, and I promise, on the part 
of us boys and girls, who have been having a good time shaking 
hands outside, that if the historian will put them all into his 
book, he may put us down on his list, and we will agree to read 
also what is published in the Lewiston jfoumal. 

But, Mr. President, and Ladies and Gentlemen, it has afforded 
me very great pleasure to be here ; although the greatest part 
of my life has been spent elsewhere, it has always been my 
pride and pleasure that I was born in this town. The city may 
be a good place to live in, but the town is a better place to be 
born in. This has been a delightful occasion to me, because 
for the first time for almost thirty-four years, I have met many 
of my old friends and acquaintances. And, speaking for all, I 
know that I have a right to congratulate the town, the officers, 
and the committees, upon the magnificent preparations which 
you have made for this celebration. I say that your parade 


this morning has not been excelled by any other town, — cer- 
tainly by any of its size. So, in closing, allow me to say that 
we go away bearing with us pleasant memories of the old town, 
and loyal hearts to Turner. 


Mr. President^ and Ladies and Gentlemen : — 

I am from a town which has a sacred name, the name of 
Providence, a place in Rhode Island, the smallest State in 
the union, a State that was founded under peculiar circum- 
stances, and under a special providence, such as guides and 
governs every one of us in all of our efforts. A particular 
Providence led Roger Williams to leave Massachusetts and go 
to Rhode Island; a particular Providence attends us all in 
every act and in every word ; a particular Providence numbers 
the days of our lives ; a particular Providence makes us sick ; 
a particular Providence restores us to health. It is in accor- 
dance with this that I appear before you on this occasion. 

Turner is my native town ; Turner was the place of my 
boyhood ; and it was the place that I left in my very early 
manhood. And I am thus induced to be here today, and to con- 
gratulate you on the one hundredth anniversary of the founding 
of the town. Its religious privileges, its religious duties, its 
Sabbath day observances have not entered much into the exer- 
cises of today, but they cannot be dispensed with, and set aside 
as unimportant; they are something to be recognized. Hence 
I refer to these matters, and I beg to be excused from any more 
words, for I did not expect to be called upon at all. 


I am not a politician, nor a public speaker. I desire simply 
to return my sincere thanks to those who have brought about 
this grand reunion in my native town. It is a great gratification 


to me, and I have come thirteen or fourteen hundred miles to 
be here with you. I have enjoyed myself very much. It would 
be vain in me to try to entertain this intelligent audience, and 
I shall not attempt to make a speech. 


I am glad your president has informed you that he does not 
ask of me a speech. I am under heavy bonds not to make a 
speech, and I have not made any for a long while. I judge this- 
will be very good news to some of you who have heard my 
voice too often in times past. I came here today because I 
wanted to come. I wanted to mingle with the citizens of 
Turner, and with the sons and daughters who have gone out 
of this good old town and return today for the purpose of cele- 
brating your anniversary. And at the risk of breaking the 
bond I spoke of, I want to relate one incident and then I will 
close. I was reminded of it by the very excellent procession 
you had this mornmg, and especially by that part of it repre- 
senting the old church music. It illustrates how very conven- 
ient the name of Turner is sometimes, and how persons have 
been helped out of very serious dilemmas by using it. There 
was a good old deacon up in the town of Rumford some years 
ago, who led the choir in the old church as deacons were in the 
habit of doing. Some of you remember that in those old times, 
they had a fork by which they pitched the tune. The leader 
would strike it upon something, and hold it up to his ear to get 
the key, and then sound it vocally before he named the tune, 
and before the choir began to sing. The deacon took out his 
fork from his pocket, and struck it on something before him, 
put it up to his ear to get the sound, and then made the vocal 
sound corresponding to it, and undertook to give the name of 
the tune, but he bad forgotten it, and could not recollect it for 
his life. By and by, a happy thought striking him, he looked 


down into one of the pews near him and said, ** Mother, 
mother, where does Sallie live ? " " Turner," said the old lady. 
"Turner," said the deacon, and the choir went on and sang the 


Mr. President : — 

I will take but a moment of your time. I hope you who 
have returned to the old manor have had a good time today j I 
hope you have enjoyed yourselves. Some of you have gone 
west ; some of you have gone south, and some to the southwest ; 
and some of you have helped to fill up our cities in Maine. 
You have come back to the old home to see us today. We are 
glad to see you. We hope you have had a good time. All of us 
did not leave the town \ some of us are here, and we are going 
to stick. So when you come back again, at the end of the next 
hundred years, friends, you will find somebody here to welcome 
you. We will be here at that time. I believe you have had a 
good time today. I have met many of you, and you have cor- 
dially grasped my hand. As for myself, I have enjoyed religion 
hugely (laughter). One hundred years have gone by, and of 
course we look backward and say, " What an improvement has 
been made ! " Why, a hundred years ago it was a good deal of 
work to go to New Gloucester to mill, and now we go to Min- 
neapolis, and don't think of it. A hundred years ago, New 
Gloucester was a good way off, and now the whole world is a 
neighborhood, right in our neighborhood. Here we reach right 
out and communicate with everybody and everything. A hun- 
dred years more are going to roll by. We are wise in our day. 
We stand up in the town of Turner and point back and say 
what we have done, and we think we are the wisest men in the 
world, and think everything has been learned and done. But 
let me tell you when the next hundred years have gone by, they 
will have take-offs in their procession on us of today. They 


will be hauling our road machine around in the procession as 
an antiquated relic of the past. We think it is a big thing. 
In a hundred years from now in the procession, they will have 
a town-meeting in operation with only men voting, and point 
back to this day as a time of barbarism, when we did n't allow 
the women to vote. We have cranks you know, lots of them. 
A hundred years hence, they will look back to the cranks of 
today and call them far-seeing philosophers. Now, don't let us 
think we know it all ; don't let us think we are going to stop 
right here ; don't let us think there will not be progress in the 
next hundred years. I did not want to say a word here today, 
and I would not, but the president called so many names of 
those that have gone away from here, and failed to get any 
response, and then he said I was always ready. Don't you 
know every man and woman in the town of Turner is always 
ready to make a speech. But we do not want to talk here 
today ; we are right here all the time, and we have a chance to 
make speeches in our town-meetings ; but you people that are 
away from here do not have that opportunity. We want you to 
come back at the end of the next hundred years, and if we are 
not all here then, there will be somebody here to drive them 
steers. [Laughter and applause, and three cheers for Uncle 


I did not expect to be called on, and I am not going to make 
a speech. There have been some anecdotes told of the old 
families in town, and something has been said about the Leavitt 
family among others. There was one old man by the name of 
Leavitt that we called Uncle Cyrus in the olden time. He had 
a receipt for setting out cabbage plants, and Turner being 
something of an agricultural community, and the receipt being 
among the lost arts to this generation, I think I will give it to 


you. Uncle Cyrus said, *'If you want to set out cabbage plants 
and have them do well, you must pull them up about nine 
o'clock in the morning of a dry day, and lay them out on a 
board, and the next morning turn them over, and the next 
morning set them out, and they will be damned glad to take 


I am no speaker, and if I were, I have worked so hard for 
the last two weeks in getting ready for this celebration, that I 
am too weary to make a speech. But, ladies and gentlemen, 
I can say that I feel proud of Turner's centennial ; I feel proud 
to say that I have had a part in it. It is one of the proudest 
things of my life. I shall always recollect this day, and I 
believe that every person that lives in Turner will feel proud 
hereafter to look back upon this day. I wish, ladies and gen- 
tlemen, to thank you all fop what you have done. You have all 
done what you could to assist your committee, and your com- 
mittee has tried to carry out the wishes of the town. If we 
have succeeded, fellow-citizens, I am very glad indeed ; if we 
have not, please overlook all the imperfections of the day, and 
believe that we have done as we thought best for your interest. 

Note. Samuel Andrews noticed on page 64, lived on the Lower Street, 
where Lewis Briggs now lives. He made a stone mortar in which corn was 
made into meal by pounding. It held about a bushel. When Rev. George 
Bates rebuilt the house, about 1836, he found this mortar, and buried it in 
the middle of the cellar, under the ell part of the house. It is supposed to 
lie there now. 

Page I, first line, for right read west. 
" I, tenth line, for left read east. 
** 3, last line, iox puly read duly. 
" 9, sixteenth line, for 1870 read 1770. 
*' 52, twelfth line, for 1801 read 1781. 
" 274, sixth line from bottom should read sit instead of sleep»