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Full text of "Incidents and appalling trials and treatment of Elizabeth R. Hill : from the plotting citizen confederacies in Worcester County, Mass."

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Sketches & incidents 



IN THE LIFE: 




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INCIDENTS 



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ELIZABETH R. HILL, 

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IN 



WORCESTER COUNTY, 



MASS. 




Entered according to Act of Congress, on the 27th day of November, in the year 1877, 
by Elizabeth R. Hill, in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, in Washington. 






NORTH BROOKFIELD, MASS., RAILROAD 

ORGANIZATION. 



The Town's Illegal, Association — Incidents of Shakp Prac- 
tice by the Directors op the North Brookfield Railroad Com- 
pany in Assessing Land Damage, Surveyed and Set Off as the 
most Feasible Route for Men dolng Business ln North 
Brookfield — The delay of the County Commissioners tn com- 
plying with Statute Requirements — The Ignoring of Mrs. 
E. R. Hill, Petitioner for disinterested Appraisers upon 
said Land Surveyed by said Railroad. 



Mrs. Hill demanded in writing, three different times, to 
the President and Directors of said railroad organization, 
for qualified appraisers upon the estate of which she was 
legally seized, which said surveyed railroad route 
cut through from north-west to south-east, and the only sat- 
isfaction for her prayers was " we shall not comply with 
your request and shall not assess your damage until after all 
others,"ttc They evidently determined to locate and build said 
road in accordance with their own wishes, law or no law, and 
to suppress at all hazards whoever should dare to vindicate 
their rights in accordance with the Revised Statutes. And as 
their designs and purposes have been accomplished without 
much notoriety or explanation, and as settlement upon all 
^V laud damage claimants has been effected, except said E. R. 
Hill, for whose land, and character, and all, their thirst 
must have satiety ; their direful hate and plotting against 
her because of her knowledge of their illegal proceedings, 
demonstration of which will be given in this book w r hich I 
am compelled to issue that I may have a chance for legal 



4 

vindication that bribery may not suppress. Siinms, the fu- 
gitive in Boston, was not more a fugitive than is said E. K. 
Hill to-day. Driven from her own quiet cottage by this 
ruthless throng, who have stopped the improvements being 
made upon her own real estate which is largely her's from her 
father in whose name it has been for more than three quar- 
ters of a century. Said real estate being located so near the 
village, hundreds that work in the " big shop " and out, have 
wished I was compelled to give it to them, or obliged to sell 
it, and said " if it can't be got by fair, it must by foul means 
from her," &c. 

Said E. R. Hill, being at this notable era correspondent 
to the Springfield Daily Union, was therefore present at all 
of the public town meetings. I will here* announce to the 
reader that I am not a woman suffragist, but am for wom- 
an's virtue, character and common sense, which will vindicate 
truth, justice and mercy — that will do all in the power of 
her might to suppress this false, glittering life, which is 
bringing so much ruin on cur nation. 

Alden Bacheller, T. C. Bates, and others, drew up and or- 
ganized through a series of blunders, a railroad company, 
calling upon the town of North Brookfield, Mass.. to take 
action upon the subject of building a railroad between North 
Brookfield and East Brookfield. On the 26th day of Decem- 
^--ber 1874, a warrant was issued in the name of the* Common- 
wealth of Massachusetts, notifying the inhabitants of the 
town of North Brookfield, qualified to vote in town affairs, to 
meet at the town hall on Saturday, the 2d day of January 
next, at 7 o'clock P. M., then and there to act on the follow- 
ing articles: 

Article 2. To see if the town will vote to become an as- 
sociate for the formation of a Railroad corporation, formed 
for the purpose of building a railroad from North Brookfield 
village to East Brookfield. 

Article 3. To see what action the town will take in re- 
gard to voting to raise money to aid in building a railroad to 
East Brookfield and act thereon. 

The town meeting was held under the above warrant Jan- 
uary 2d, 1875, when Augustus £>mith was voted moderator. 



Motion by E. Hill, seconded by John Hill, to pass over arti- 
cle 2 ; expression of opinions, pro and con, as to whether the 
motion opened the whole subject of a railroad for discussion. 
Thus they argued sharp and fiery. F. Walker related his 
interview with the President of the B. & A. railroad by him- 
self; A. Bacheller exhibited a draft of the B. A. & Ware 
River, and the proposed Worcester Co. Central, aiming upon 
the four miles between No^th and East Brookfield, advocat- 
ing the immediate building of a railroad to East 
Brookfield ; John Hill argued for grades ; J. F. He- 
bard wanted this vote decided, that something might be done 
more to the point at issue ; it was voted not to pass over 
the article. Thus meal bags and sleepers were hurled by 
the tongue with savage ferocity, till it was a question in the 
minds of some, which of the two proprietors would, first go 
out and hang himself. T. C. Bates, with his scathing thrusts 
at all opposers of building the railroad, one would suppose 
the great interpreter of .railroad economy, using Judge P. 
Emory Aldrich's name as an assistant adviser — nothing 
more. 

F .Walker's spirit becalming itself, he brought forward some 
resolutions preparatory to making survey of the most feas- 
ible route between East and North Brookfield and estimates 
of the cost of construction, with regard to the business in- 
terests of the town ; also that a committee be appointed au- 
thorized to correspond with any corporation or individual 
who may be interested in the enterprise or in any other 
railroad which may be directly connected with our under- 
taking. 

T. ]\L Duncan denounced the idea of a railroad to stop at 
North Brookfield — he was for a through route ; John Gilman 
was also for a through route and was consequently driven 
from the staud. Dr. Tyler moved to adjourn this meeting 
until Wednesday evening next, at 7 o'clock, January 6th, 
1875. x\t this meeting, on motion of Alden Bacheller that the 
town vote to become an associate, with others, for the pur- 
pose of building a railroad from North to East Brookfield, 
A. Bacheller, Bates, J. F. Hebard, John Hill, C. A. Adams 
and others, spoke in iavor of the motion. F. Walker thought 



more definite, reliable information relative to the routes, 
grade, tonnage and business to be accommodated was neces- 
sary. Dr. Tyler advocated caution and due consideration 
before taking such an important step ; he was against rais- 
ing five per cent of the town valuation ; as he termed it, 
we were getting a baby on oar hands which had got to be 
brought up on the bottle, and wisely advised the raising of 
but three per cent on our valuation, for the statutes on the 1st 
day of February next would prohibit the town's involving 
itself beyond said three per cent. I think too much of my 
native place to have it sunk in debt by this Boston bloat' and 
glassware drummer, and a few more here, on the eve of bank- 
ruptcy, to be huddled into office, to filch the town of its indus- 
tries, for their own and a few others' emolument. That old 
shop has always had its foot upon my throat, and that 
Boston bloat has got the poll tax payers and weak minded 
cusses rabid, to yell and shout at every bark he makes. I 
tell you, citizens, vote to raise but three per cent, on our val- 
uation. J. F. Hebard got right up and said he must have 
five per cent, for the baby, which was applauded as mirth- 
fully cunning. 

The vote was taken by ballot, yea and nay, using the check 
list. The result was carried. Motion by T. C Bates 
that the town now appropriate the sum of five per cent, on 
its valuation as it shall be made by the town assessors, as 
subscription towards stock in building a railroad from North 
to East Brookfield. The vote was taken as above and 
the motion carried. Voted to adjourn till Tuesday evening, 
January 12th, 1875, at 7 o'clock p. m. 

January 12th, 1875, at 7 o'clock r. M.: A live town meet- 
ing, and Alden Bacheller is addressing the house thus: " I 
suppose no business can be done because the directors have 
not yet been chosen ; that the stockholders have concluded 
that to go on safely we must employ legal counsel." Chas. 
Adams, Jr., also advised legal counsel, saying that the select- 
men had requested him to act as town's agent in the mat- 
ter, and as he now understood the duties of the agent he thought 
he could consistently with his other duties and engage- 
ments do so ; but if it should prove that much time and labor 



were to devolve upon the agent, lie should be obliged to de- 
cline the appointment. G. C. Lincoln thought the town 
should be represented ?n the choice of directors. F. Walker 
said it could not then be known what amount of stock the 
town could subscribe for under its vote ; it might now be 
competent for the town agent to subscribe for a small 
amount, or more than the amount held by stockholders. 
Voted to adjourn this meeting to Monday, February 1st, 
1875, at 7 o'clock p. m. 

North Brookfted, January 17th, 1875. 

There ha3 been a meeting of the stockholders for the pur- 
pose of organizing a Railroad Association. They proceeded 
to choose a board of nine directors, as follows : Aiden 
Bacheller, T. C. Bates, Bonum Nye, W. H. Montague, Free- 
man Walker, S. S. Edmunds, Liberty Stone, T. M. Duncan, 
John Hill. Bonum Nye, President ; T.M. Duncan, Secretary. 

The directors have invited the town to become an asso- 
ciation. The selectmen have issued a warrant, calling on 
all citizens qualified to vote in town to meet at the Town 
Hall on Friday evening, January 22d, 1875, at 7 o'clock, to 
see if the town will subscribe for and hold shares in the 
capital stock of a North Brookfield Railroad. The railroad 
corporation to be formed under chap. 53 of the Acts of the 
year 1872, for the purpose of building a railroad from North 
to East Brookfield. 

To see if the town will become an associate for the forma- 
tion of a railroad conrpany to be formed under chap. 53 of 
the Acts of the year 1872, for the purpose of building a rail- 
road from North to East Brookfield. 

Readers, pause ! listen ! That marvelous Bates and 
Bacheller, who have been conversant with court judges and 
railroad presidents, which is their rallying cry to bring every 
voter a victim to their desire, their one idea, that a railroad 
must be built or the town is ruined. And every railroad 
meeting heretofore held in the Town Hall has been packed to 
its utmost capacity with boys and unnaturalized citizens, as 
well as voters, who shouted and stamped uproariously for 
every argument in favor of the railroad, and hissed the oppos- 



8 

ers, they being in the minority, Bates having a marvelous 
vocabulary of magnetic power over the ignorant and stupid. 
The railroad pulse is beating in three-fourths of the audience ; 
120 to the minute in my opinion. Bates, laughingly, informs 
the selectmen that the evening town meetings had not been 
legal. " You must pull down that warrant for town meeting 
on the 22d inst., at 7 o'clock p. M., and issue one calling a 
town meeting on Friday the 29th day of January inst., at 10 
o'clock A. M." The warrant was issued. For further enlight- 
enment of the reader, T will here interpolate a copy of H. 
Knight, town clerk : 

" Alljprevious actions of the town in relation to a railroad 
from North Brookfield to East Brookfield having been re- 
garded as invalid, or at least of doubtful legality, on account 
of the holding of the meetings in the evening, and perhaps 
for other reasons, a new warrant has been issued, a new 
action been taken, as will appear from the following record. 

" H. Knight, Town Clerk." 

On the 29th of January the railroad town meeting was 
held, in accordance with warrant issued, and articles in said 
warrant were acted upon as follows : 

Second article, now taken up, G. C. Lincoln paid, in be- 
half of the selectmen, they understood the law to provide 
that the form of a vote shall or may be presented by them, 
and he, therefore, presented the following form of a vote : 
" Will the town subscribe for and hold shares to the amount 
of ninety thousand dollars ($90,000) in the capital stock of 
the North Brookfield Railroad Company, a railroad corpora- 
tion to be formed under chap. 53 of the Acts of 1872, for 
the purpose of building a railroad from North Brool field to 
East Brookfield ?" 

Some of the arguments, pro and con., upon the vote under 
consideration, are as follows : Freeman Walker argued that 
before the town commit itself to that article, we should first 
ascertain where the road was to be located ; what it will 
cost ; how to be paid for ? The cumbrous expense of build- 
ing said railroad upon the town was clearly set forth by him. 



If he was going to jump a ditch, he first wanted to know 
how far he had to jump, He therefore moved that we raise 
one per cent, on our valuation to investigate this subject 
before we enter into the expense. We mast know the facts 
of the case, and should it prove favorable he should bo for 
the railroad. 

Dr. Tyler spoke to the same effect. Erastus Hill spoke 
upon the same ground, but gave further reasons for Bachel- 
ler and Bates' railroad. Bankruptcy was at their door, <fec. 
Bates' followers showing the beneficial results which would 
accrue, and hurling venomous slurs upon Walker, Tyler and 
Hill (but, O reader, he was not put into tlie felon's cell). 
And as Charles Adams said in a subsequent meeting, being 
aggrieved at some remark of F. Walker, with tears in his 
eyes : " That his feelings were never wounded to such an 
extent in public before as when the above statement of 
Bates' slurs was uttered." Bacheller spoke with Bates, also 
giving the statistics of the three routes surveyed, the esti- 
mated cost of each varying from $80,000 to $100,000. Fif- 
teen minutes after 12 o'clock, adjourned for one hour. 

Met according to adjournment, when the motion of F. 
Walker, to raise one per cent, on our valuation to investigate, 
&c, was rejected. The question was called for, and ballot 
taken by check list. Carried, more than two-thirds voting 
in the affirmative. 

The following form of a vote w r as then presented by the 
selectmen, under article 3d : " Will the town become an 
associate for the formation of the North Brookfield Railroad 
Company, a railroad corporation to be formed under chap. 
53 of the Acts of 1872, for the purpose of building a rail- 
road from North Brookfield to East Brookfield ; and shall 
the shares of the capital stock of said corporation to be 
taken by the town be subscribed to the Articles of Associa- 
tion of said company?" The question was called for, and the 
ballot was taken by check list, counted and declared carried, 
more than two-thirds voting in the affirmative. Voted, on 
motion of F. Walker, that the town treasurer be authorized 
to borrow such sums of money as may be needed to pay the 
necessary expenses in obtaining the survey, and such other 



10 

expenses as may arise. IJlojal, sweeping vote that ! Voted, 
on motion of T. C. Bates, that we choose a committee of 
three to act with our town treasurer in negotiating for the 
loan to the amount of the town's subscription, and report 
to the town at some future time.- Voted that the committee 
be selected by a nominating committee of three appointed 
by the moderator. The moderator appointed T. C. Bates, 
L. P. DeLand, J. F. Hebard, nominating committee. The 
committee reported, and the town voted Hon. Chas. Adams, 
Jr., Bonum Nye, and S. S. Edmunds, committee on finance. 
Voted, this meeting now adjourn until 1 o'clock P. M. of 
the day of the nest annual March meeting. % 

Appointment of the Railroad Agent. 
" Whereas, the town of North Brookfield at a legal meet- 
ing duly called and held on the 29th day of January, 1875, 
to take action relative to .subscribing to the capital stock of 
the North Brookfield Railroad Company, and becoming an 
associate in the same, voted to subscribe ninety thousand 
dollars to the capital stock of said company. Now therefore, 
we the selectmen of said town of North Brookfield do hereby 
appoint and authorize Charles Adams, Jr., in behalf of said 
town to execute its vote as aforesaid. 

Warren Tyler, 
Geo. C. Lincoln, 
John B. Dewing, 
Selectmen of North Brookfield. 
North Brookfield, Feb. 13th, 1875. 

(Endorsed upon the back.) 

North Brookfield, Feb. 15th, 1875. 
In accordance with the within appointment I have this day 
for and in behalf of said town subscribed the articles of 
association for the formation of the North Brookfield Rail- 
road Company, the sum of ninety thousand dollars of the 
capital stock of said company. 

Charles Adams, Jr., 

Agent of said town." 

(A true copy.) 

Attest Hiram Knight, Town Clerk. 



11 

That the readers may know we had some other meetings 
in the evening besjde railroad meetings, I will say Mr. Crane 
of Boston addressed the citizens of North Brookfield, 
January 18th, upon the bill issued by the Directors of the 
Bay State Transportation League. Also January 27th, Rev. 
Mr. Murray, of Boston, delivered an address before the 
Library Association. Subject, — Poverty. Those who were 
privileged to hear said address could not fail to understand. 
He was not ignorant of tlie effect of poverty upon the mental 
and moral size of men, and how great the difficulty of 
developing the higher moral truths in trie soul, while his 
whole mind and strength and time were required to meet 
plrysical demands. He said of the passages of Scripture that 
made him sad, one was this: " The foxes have holes, and the 
birds of the air have nests ; but the Son of man hath, not 
where to lay his head." He portrayed graphically lines be- 
tween real riches and false riches. A man may build a house, 
and have every element of beauty within, and yet he may 
have done very little : while another man may never have built 
a house except the house of character, &c. Should this 
little sketch book, written in a stranger's home, ever come 
before the gentlemen above referred to, they will readily 
bring before them the lady reporter at t'heir right hand, at 
the time above mentioned. This lady was thrust into a 
felon's cell by some of the foremost of said audience because 
said lady will not bow down and worship them. 

I also find, January 28th, 1875, a report of mine reading 
thus : North Brookfield Union Congregational Church, and 
its Sabbath School, which was founded in 1854, have ad- 
journed sine die. I also find with me another event in this 
eventful month. J. E. Porter, Superintendent of Schools in 
North Brookfield, and Prudential Committee in District No. 
1 ; and Daniel W. Knight, Prudential Committee in District 
No. 2, have resigned on account of the censure cast upon 
them by vote of the town on the High School controversy. 
Mrs. Hill being sick with rheumatism at the time of said 
meeting, must give hearsay report. The High School 
teacher, who was being denounced (being a native of Wales, 
a few miles beyond West Warren, Mass.), told me he could 



12 

not conceive of such a garrulous meeting as he was eye and 
ear witness to. James Duncan, Erastus Hill and others, 
being officially set down, especially said Duncan, scathing 
ferocious talk — but, reader, it did not frighten Bothwell, to 
put him in the felon's cell. He was thirsting for Mrs. Hill 
to locate there. That meeting was a disgrace to the town 
for all time. 

The 12th of this eventful month the selectmen appointed 
J. T. Gulliver a committee in District No. 1, and the Rev. 
Mr. Harlow in District No. 2, to fill vacancies above men- 
tioned. 

As some people become exalted in about the same way 
and suddenness as the popping of a kernel of corn, even so 
ariseth T. C. Bates. His sudden thrust upon notoriety 
in our midst was the renovating and remodeling the First 
Congregational Church which he undertook by giving 
bountifully of glass fixings, as he was at that time drummer 
for a crockery and glassware firm in" some distant city. 
Said business being so lucrative, that said Bates received 
82,000 income. 

Report has it that during the siege of getting old citizens 
to give up their pews, and hereafter compelled to bid off a sit- 
ting or sittings, ae their- family might demand, from year to 
year, was hard mental digestion for some of the old orthodox 
worshippers. But Bates and some of the supers in the " big 
shop," who are rising like leaven (readers, that kind of 
leaven to the virtuous moral person is a poisonous miasma), 
they must oust those old men and rich old widows out of 
the broad isle, that their sudden growth may be in advance, 
unless these " old fogies " " shell out " — their sittings will be 
in the " shady side of the sanctuary," thus they argued. 
Hon. Chas. Adams, Jr., was against doing away with the old- 
fashioned choir, in which said Adams and family had been head 
leaders, Mr. Adams ever contributing largely for all needed 
improvements, but that swelling man Bates informed Hon. 
Chas. Adams in divers ways, as report has it, " The choir 
could get along without him, and his flute, too." That re- 
mark was bandied round from social table to fireside, by some 
as nice and sharp, and to the disgust and contempt of 
others. 



13 

The church, on October 15th, 1874, was rededicated. I wa3 
present. The house is in modern style, fresh tapestry, <fcc, 
looked as much better as one feels after an ablution, and new 
clothes on. And conspicuous upon the south side of the gal- 
lery was this swelling youug man Bates, his figure somewhat 
in advance of the other sittings, his eyes rolling constantly, his 
whole figure speaking " All know I gave these chandeliers. 
I have caused this work to be done. Yes, this is the Baby- 
lon I've built up. I'm to be first man in this house. Now, 
they can't do no less than send me representative after all 
my great contributions, treading down every obstacle, mak- 
ing this fit for me in my marvelous expansion." Whenever 
my eye rested on him the great magnifier was, as above, 
radiating. 

During the repairs of said church its congregation, on 
holyday, had been invited to join in worship with the Union 
Church in said town. Consequently said church was invited 
to join the First Church during the winter till the selling of 
sittiugs the coming April, sittings being free to all during 
the said time. As the Union Church had been suffering and 
wasting away for years, to me, as well as to many others, it 
was most apparently dead. When it, was reported to me 
the Union Church had accepted the above invitation, but 
were not quite ready to " sell out," &c, I made this reply : 
"Died, October 15th, 1871, in North Brookfield, Mass., the 
Union Congregational Church, aged twenty years. The friends 
of the deceased desire it to lie in state a length of time. 
During its repose the choir will chant ' How short and fleet- 
ing are our daj-s ! ' " 

The "big shop" too being enlarged, gave position for more 
" supers." They, too, must have some more public noto- 
riety, and offered to contribute largely if the Union Church 
will open its doors (said church being now most in the pro- 
prietorship of F. Walker, said gentleman being legally seized 
of the same through the nonpayment of taxes assessed on 
pews owned by non-church members). Walker foxedly 
cautioned all these aspiring applicants, thus causing them to 
pledge specified sums, or even more if needed ; on those 
conditions the church was resuscitated. 



14 

I said the Union Church was colonized in 1854, through 
fearful dissensions (the name attached to it was, the Church 
founded in a quarrel). Conspicuous and foremost was said 
F. Walker, ever ready for a rebuff to our most able and 
much revered Rev. Christopher Cushing, colleague with Dr. 
Thomas Snell. At this time, the prominent bolters from Drs. 
Snell and Cushing's church were the "Walkers, Duncans and 
Skerry ; out of church were the Hills, Bigelows and Gilberts. 
My husband, then Kittredge Hill, Jr., joined this stampede, 
to my great grief. I went "with him, that the family might 
attend worship together, but, e'er two years passed, this 
church was too mean for him to enter. I had — August 5th, 
1855 — united with said Union Congregational Church com- 
munity (with F. Walker at my left hand, in the broad aisle, 
together with a score of others, — I am now impressed Both- 
well was of the number — he is now, certain), to walk with 
them in accordance with the articles of faith of the Union 
Congregational Church. This church became so obnoxious 
to my late husband, that he forbade me and our son attending 
worship there. I persisted, and that act, together with 
Spiritualism, which the dissensions above referred to had 
opened a space for some issue besides quarreling orthodox, 
one other cause — before these two last mentioned — sepa- 
rated me from my husband. George F. Hoar and General 
Charles Devens were my counsel. When Devens enlisted 
in the army, (now) Judge Dewey filled his vacancy. I was 
divorced first, from bed &nd board, in 1859. 

In September of said year, I opened a private school in 
Grove School-house, North Brookfield, Massachusetts ; was 
very successful, having previously been teacher in South 
Brookfield, and Spencer and North Brookfield in 1841 and 
1842, before my marriage. As Mr. Hill still remains P. M., 
my friends advised me to seek employment in Worcester. 
Therefore, in May, 18G0, I personally applied to Otis Put- 
nam, of the firm of Barnard, Sumner & Co., Worcester, to 
work in their cloak and mantilla department. During their 
seasons of work I was there employed till the spring of 1SG2. 
I took the charge of the cloak and mantilla department in O. • 
A. Smith's store, Lincoln House block, Worcester, where I re- 



15 

mained till I was prostrated with rheumatic fever, and was 
under medical treatment of Doctor Nichols, Worcester, 
boarding at that time with Mr. Osgood Collister, singing 
teacher. When recovered enough to ride home to my 
father's, there I remained for a long time distressingly lame. 
During said time an opening more agreeable to my mind 
was forwarded to me, from Miss Mary Dutton, of the Dutton 
Seminary, New Haven, through the agency of Miss Catha- 
rine Beecher. There, too, I remained till sickness — diphtheria 
— which was prevalent in the seminary. My second term I 
was sick some two or more weeks, part of the time having 
medical aid two and three times per day.' (This said March 
G. F. Hoar, obtained by divorce, $3,000 alimony. 
My father died February 29, 1864.) I returned to my 
late father's house, unable to wait on myself from the 
ravaging effects of diphtheria still with me. The com- 
ing summer Bonum Nye, Colonel Adams and Captain. D. 
W. Lane were appointed appraisers for my deceased 
father's estate. It was my mother's wish to have the whole 
house, together with land surrounding it, set off to her, as 
she was then sixty-six years of age (was married to my 
father at the age of eighteen, in the year 1813 ; my father 
and grandfather Tyler, owning said farm for a number of 
years) ; previously to said marriage mother never knowing 
what it was to move, I alone of the children joining my 
mother in her desire. As I was the youngest, I was the 
last to appear before those legally appointed three men, " to 
tell what I had to say, &c ;" and the following is exactly 
what I said to the legal three : 

Mother desires to have the whole house set off to her, as 
rent would be coming in, giving her some spending money, 
and the land «in front of the house, between cemetery and 
lane, together with that east of the house — give it to her ; . 
and then I wish an equal share with the rest. Could I des- 
ignate my choice, it would be the west end of the farm, close 
to my lute home with K. Hill, said Hill's residence being 
in court under a bill in equity. Bonum Nye replied : The 
Hills will not let you have that place, and you don't want 
it. The town will blame us very much if we do not give 



16 

you a home in this house." D. W. Lane interrupting and 
joining Nye in his assertion. Adams was silent. The other 
two stating, " Mr. Stoddard and wife had both requested that 
wc give you the west naif of the house," &c. Reader, I was 
then feeble, hardly able to walk. I said, I did want my 
house, and the control of the dead bodies of my four lost 
boys, and Mr. Hoar says I shall get it. And as for the 
town's blaming you, if you don't do so and so, it's none of 
their business. I think. Mrs. Stoddard would be unwilling 
to be set off herself in this house, against mother's wish. I 
rose to leave the room. In going out I said : You give 
mother the whole house, and the land she has asked for ; 
and my mother heard me say it. Reader, you will be sur- 
prised to read the following : Those men set me off in parts 
of the east half of the house, giving mother the west half, 
thus twisting me from garret to cellar, above, around, below 
my mother; also, giving me the land in front of the house — 
the worst portion that could have been set to me iii the 
whole farm, and in open violation of my request. 

My mother was angered almost to frenzy by that arbi- 
trary, overreaching, tenacious, bonum magnum Nye decision. 
The consequences I will not hero give, as my autobiography 
is soon to be issued. And I do, and ever have, considered B. 
M. Nye the direct accessory cause of my mother's untimely 
death, April 29th, 18G6. In March, 18G-5, said Hill's house 
was decreed me bj the court, I taking possession of the 
same the May following. The house having been rented 
since 1859, without any repairs, was in a most dilapidated 
and filthy condition, but I cleansed and scrubbed till winter, 
completely worn out. The last week in December Jacob 
Smith applied to me to take charge of the school in District 
No. 1, as he had tried two or three teachers during the past 
three weeks, all leaving the school, <fcc. On the 1st day of 
January, 18GG, I commenced teaching in said school, with 
fifty scholars, from A, B, C, through Greenledfs arithmetic. 
And a happier, better disciplined school could not be found 
— putting aside prejudice — being kept five weeks opened 
beyond the other school. 

I remained there three terms, till a Henry Sampson was 



17 

committee — who will figure hereafter — said he should not hire 
Mrs. Hill. At that time twelve weeks was a term, and two 
terms a year. The spring of 1SGG I had a private school of 
over seventy-five scholars. My summer term in District 
No. 1 was an especially happy, progressive school, every schol- 
ar just teeming with happiness and good will. As there had 
been many serious ruptures in said school many times for 
years, Minister Keene and the Examining Committee were 
antagonistical to the school at the time of my taking charge 
of the same, Januaiy 1st, 18G6. Therefore the weal or woe 
of the school was depending upon my ability or interest in 
their welfare. 

Readers, permit me to relate an incident which took place 
in connection with said school my second week there. I 
boarded at Col. Pliny Nye's. One evening, with some half 
dozen scholars around me, who had come in to be assisted 
in learning their lessons — and there was also present Col. 
Nye, Mrs. Hanger and other members of the family — came 
in Mr. Ebenezer Nye (and his feelings were a type of seven- 
eighths of the district), and the main topic with the family 
was the meanness of the school committee, as adding fuel to 
the rebellion. Says he : " Good Heavens, we should all been 
at Westboro if Mrs. Hill hadn't come here." I turned to 
him and said, " I guess not — why, Mr. Keene, when in school' 
last week, praised up the school, and prayed fervently for 
parent, scholar and teacher," and when he took my hand on 
leaving he says : " Your school this afternoon has as prosper- 
ous a look as any in town." Said E. Nye " Didn't he think 
he had brought on this improved condition ? Pray for 
scholar and parent — his prayers don't ascend as high as the 
smoke of a house." 

In the course of the summer term we had an omnibus ride 
to Cold Brook Springs, Mass., thirty of the eldest scholars 
participating. Said omnibus was driven and owned by 
James Duncan. And, in the morning early, as we were to 
start at nine o'clock, J. D. called at my house, saying he 
came after me to take me to the school house that I might 
keep the devils in place, besides I propose to have my pay 
before I start. I replied, " Every arrangement preparatory to- 



18 

getting into your omnibus has been planned by me, also 
your service fee, &c., is collected and in the bauds of the 
appointed secretary of said company, anticipating paying 
for said ride ere they had it. Furthermore, there has been 
made, by my scholars, three large beautiful banners with 
mottoes in large raised letters with pure green cuttings: 
first motto, ' Happy Band ;' second motto, District No. 1 ; 
third motto, ' "We love each other.' " 

Reader, the native instinct of the banner boys showed 
itself when passing where the school committee lived, or 
others who they felt had wronged them. Those banner 
mottoes would be turned toward them with rapidity. J. D. 
being very happy with the money, and clock work proceed- 
ings of the happy band, drove us round the different streets 
in the village, halting in noticeable places to show us off. 
After a splendid ride we reached the springs and tested the 
medical waters and had a grove dinner. When through, 
Fannie Ranger came forward, placing a beautiful crown upon 
my head with appropriate remarks, which took me with such 
surprise I bowed my head and wept. J. D. came forward 
and said : " Hallo J crowned! You should had it some other 
color beside green (it being green and gilt). Mrs. Hill is too 
black to wear green." My only reply was a fervent kiss 
given to each scholar. "Winter and summer I was em- 
ployed. My fall private school numbered over one hundred 
scholars. Hiram Knight, having prejudicious spite towards 
me* tried, with his might, to prevent my having a private 
school, saying I advanced those in attendance beyond their 
classes, thus deranging the school, &c, In the spring a 
private school of thirty -five scholars at my residence. Said 
Knight preventing my having a public schoolroom, in the 
summer of 1867 I taught on Eagged Hill, "West Brook- 
field, eighteen weeks, in the old district of grandfather 
Tyler. At the close of said school, after great praise given 
to me, in the school a unanimous vote of thanks was 
taken for my extra labor and painstaking. A memorable 
incident Avhile in this school — the first park of the term — 
while boarding at Coleman Gilbert's : One fine morning on 
entering my schoolroom a strong fume of brimstone caused 



19 

me to say, whoever lias brimstone with them please leave 
the same outside of the door, the smell is oppressive to me. 
In my usual round to assist and direct my pupils, that their 
lessons might be learned understandingly, and being called 
to assist a Howe boy, who had been absent from school two 
or three days, I asked him the cause of his absence. 
Howe: "I have been sick." Noticing eruptive sores be- 
tween his fingers, said I, "What is the matter with your 
hands?" Howe :" Erysipelas." Elizabeth Tyler (my second 
cousin) arose and with propelling force shouted " he'd got 
the itch, and grandmarm says we shall all ketch it ; most 
every one has got brimstone sewed in their clothes." Reader, 
don't imagine I told her to sit down for she did that after 
giving the momentous alarm. I quietly rose from his side, 
went to my desk ( facing my school — upon every brow was a 
woeful quizzing smirk), Master Howe if you have, I dismiss 
you from school until you are in a healthy condition to be 
here. Howe and his sisters and brothers began crying say- 
ing he has not the itch ; it's because we are poor makes them 
lie so about us ; it's erysipelas that ails him. I rung my bell. 
Then said, Charley Sampson, " You go home; tell your father 
(the committee) to bring Dr. Blodgett to this schoolroom 
the earliest moment possible that he may examine T. Howe, 
and thus be able to inform us what ails said boy. Charley 
sped off with the alacrity of a deer, and Howe took himself 
off next without being asked again. 

Mr. Sampson soon brought up with said doctor, and espy- 
ing said boy, at home, called, found said boy diseased with 
the old army itch (it having been brought into the school 
by said family two years previous, breaking up the school, 
from which the teacher did not recover for three months). 
They then came to the schoolroom, Dr. Blodgett examining 
every scholar's hand, mine included, for I had commenced 
scratching, much to the amusement of said doctor. The doc- 
tor telling two boys, who had been with said Howe, to go 
home and be cared for in haste. 

As the above gentlemen were leaving, or standing upon 
the school step, the eldest daughter in school of said family 
took her books and started to leave, crying and muttering " It's 



20 

just 'cause we are poor, he hain't got the itch." I stepped 
forward, placing my hand on her shoulder, saying : " Martha, 
don't feel so ; the disgrace will be in exposing others to the 
disease." She snapped round and bit my hand like a dog. 
Reader, my hand swelled so badly, Mrs. Gilbert had to poul- 
tice, &c, the same. It was the unanimous voice of the 
district that my instant resolute move saved the spreading 
of that hideous disease, and the breaking up of the school, 
which was, I think, just the meaning of that vote passed. The 
coming fall my private school numbered forty-seven scholars. 

In the winter I taught in No. 7, my old native school house, 
boarding with Chas. E. Jenks. During vacation I fitted 
scholars for High School. The following summer taught in 
father Hill's district, No. 5, boarding at home ; James Dun- 
can furnishing me with a team, driven by his children, to 
and fro, during the term, for which I paid $25. Private 
school in the fall. 

Winter of 1868-69 I taught in Spencer, District No. 5, a 
school of advanced scholars ; Mayhew's book-keeping, single 
and double entry, was thoroughly learned, Robinson's ad- 
vanced arithmetic w r as mastered in its every mathematical 
principle ; Warren's Physical Geography was memorized by 
a class of five. Two members of the above classes commenced 
teaching in the summer term, and proved themselves then 
and since efficient teachers. 

I will here state, Spencer has the greatest scholastic 
ability of any town within the radius of 20 miles. 
Reader, is not this the evidence of her business prosperity ? 
I will interpolate my teaching in Spencer the winter of 1811-2 
(at that time schools were schools. This frivolous flummery, 
which for a few years past occupied four-fifths of school hours, 
had then no foothold.) Day's Algebra and Adams' Arithmetic, 
was taken up, memorized, and practically applied, with 
as much care and interest as the gewgaws of the day are 
attached to the feeble minded pupil. The spring and 
summer I gave private instructions by the hour, and also 
taught school at my own residence. In winter of 1809 and 
70 taught again in Spencer, No. 5. Gave them private re- 
citations, at my own residence, in book-keeping, algebra, 



21 

analysis, ancient history, physiology and science of common 
things. Summer term engaged and examined for to teach in 
New Braintree, district No. 1. Owing to the distance of board- 
ing house I gave the school up — remaining at home, and 
giving private recitations, afternoon and evening, during the 
summer and fall. T was engaged by Superintendent Robert 
Beecher to take charge of school in district No. 3 in the winter 
of 1870 and '71. Sabbath afternoon, previous to the next 
morning (Monday) for said school to commence, said Beecher 
called at my residence, saying he came down Saturday even- 
ing, about 8 o'clock, and there being no light in my house 
did not cross the street ; and he was in something of a 
predicament, the issue of which would depend upon Mrs. 
Hill's magnanimous spirit. " A young lady from somewhere 
came in a coach Saturday evening, to take charge of School 
No. 3, to whicn you are assigned." And it came about in this 

way : I was and said young lady desired to go out 

in the country to teach the rude country lasses. Beecher : " I 
will give you a school of ten weeks, so much per w r eek." Lady : 
" It's a bargain, I'll be there." Beecher : " Supposing she was 
joking, as 3*ou know I must carry my part; thus I am in- 
volved," I bowed my head and wept. Beecher says : " Dry 
up those tears ; good heavens, you will have chronic rheu- 
matism, diphtheria, miasmal fever, and the Lord knows what 
more, down in that sunken hole. Now I will guarantee you 
will have private scholars enough, and make more money in 
the end-;— deducting doctor's bill, perhaps loss of life." Thus 
I was confronted with no escape but surrender. Private 
scholars were forthcoming — young men from " big shop" — 
to whom I gave lessons in grammar, letter writing, book- 
keeping, interest and percentage, &c. ; James Duncan's son, 
Wendell in book-keeping, and daughter, Viana Bella, in 
other branches, on whom extra time and painstaking were 
bestowed. 

A few brief outlines of events, from my marriage, March 
22d, 1843, aged 16 years, 2 months, and 26 days. My hus- 
band was 29 years, 5 months, and 23 days. My father 
giving me a large wedding and extra furnishing for house- 
keeping. Not a cloud was in the sky that marriage day, and 



22 

everything equally bright and prospective. Eev. Dr. 
Thomas Snell, minister of my native town. After the 
marriage ceremony, while partaking of the feast, Dr. Snell 
remarked to my husband upon his fortune in getting me for 
a wife, adding some were more capable of being married at 
the age of sixteen than others at thirty. 

January 8th, 1844, 1 had a son born, weighing 3^ pounds, 
all dressed. Dec. 27th, 1846, my twentieth birthday another 
son was born, and lived till Aug. IGth, 1847. As something 
was in my family making a skeleton not bearable for a spir- 
ited lady, in October following I stepped from my husband's 
door, saying I should not return till my house was rid of 
that skeleton. The following January the skeleton was 
pledged never to be thrust in my place, if I would return to 
my apparently mourning husband and child — which I did 
with as much alacrity and forgiveness toward my husband 
as a mother ever gave her child, Dr. Snell arranging and 
appointing the meeting at his residence ; and after concilia- 
tion joined our hands, repeating the marriage vow, and clos- 
ing in lengthened prayer, still holding our hands. We then 
took up our abode in the village, renting a tenement in James 
Duncan's house, till we were building the residence I now 
occupy, which was decreed me in my divorce from Mr. Hill, 
in 1864. I will here tell Dr. Snell's advice to me, after my 
separation from Mr. Hill, from bed and board with $150.00 
alimony. "My afflicted child I have married you twice to 
Mr. Hill, and from what you say, and others, he has no legal 
right to you. I now sincerely charge you, never to attempt 
to live with him again. I kuow the careful instruction you 
have ever given your son, and in God's own time you will 
reap the reward. Let us pray," and we knelt, and his wife 
and Abbie, in lengthy prayer. On leaving his house, at the 
front door with my hand in his, he says, " God bless you, 
God be merciful unto you and keep you safe from harm. 
Amen." 

In 1854, June 10th, another son was born, and died 
April 17th, 1857, of scarlet fever and canker rash ; as 
beautiful and bright child as was ever born of woman. His 
constitution baffled that terrible disease nineteen days. 



23 

Nine of those days the sufferer could not make a loud noise, 
owing in part to the hard bunches in his throat. I admin- 
istered to his every need ; seventeen of those days my clothes 
were not off, to lie down in bed. My aged father would 
come up in the morning, and watch with me every move and 
change of the lovely grandson ; mother coming when she 
could, and would often say, " it seems almost wicked for you 
to do so much, and hold that dying child here so long." His 
strong father was crushed in spirit at the loss of his idol boy. 
Our neighbors and friends did for us all in their power to stay 
the great destroyer. My eldest son, then thirteen years 
of age, was struck with the same disease three days previous, 
and Dr . F. said he must die, but our pet darling would recover. 
The attachment between the two brothers was the purest of 
earth. The agony of the lone brother, when that cold, silent 
darling's form was borne from the threshhold, never to return, 
was heartrending to all, and fresh flowers were every week 
placed upon his coffin in the silent tomb for five-years. The 
funeral solemnities were conducted by Wm. H. Beecher, then 
candidate for settlement over the Union Congregational 
Church, from whence Rev. Dr. Waldo had been dismissed a 
few weeks previous. The very name of Beecher throwing a 
mantle over the great ordeal the Church had been called to 
pass through. I had been a teacher in Sabbath School 
for years, commencing under the ministry of Drs. Snell and 
Gushing, and continuing (after leaving my own home 
church for the sake of my husband) when the Union 
Church was established. When the Missionary Sewing Cir- 
cle was established in this church, at its re-organization 
I was appointed secretary and treasurer of the same, 
which places I held for years, or till my absence from town 
caused me to resign the position. During my secretaryship 
I corresponded with Lewis Tappen and Jooelyn of New 
York, of the American Board of Missions. And many choice 
gems of poetry are daily in my mind, sent me by them at 
that time. Thus I became very intimate w r ith Mr. Beecher's 
family — every member of whom I revered, and esteemed. 
Mrs. Beecher's every word and action seemed hallowed, and 
never did I witness a rude action or uncouth saying in that 



24 

family while they remained in our midst. But their superi- 
ority brought envious censure ; and dissatisfaction from the 
querulous spirit born with the church, caused Mr. Beecl^sr 
and family, after a few years, to become member ; of the 
First Church, instead of pastor of Union Church. Mrs. 
Beecher died January 5th, 1870 ; the family leaving, except 
Robert, the April following. 

Mr. Hill was appointed postmaster in November, 1856, 
and held the position until 1860. When his wife I 
took charge of the quarterly settlements in said office, and 
when making returns at Worcester, I always used language 
as if in repetition of Mr. Hill, fearing ever I should assume 
" the aspect of pants." December 19th, 1858, twin boys 
were born to us, as if to replace the two gone to join the 
angel band. The first born dying the 6th of March follow- 
ing, the other on the 25th. Mr. Hill would often speak as if 
frenzied — " Am I never to raise another child ?" And he 
would seem almost to curse G. )d and man, for no fathers 
ever loved their babies more' than he. 

At this time spiritualism came in like a flood in our midst, 
yet the door was opened wide for some isms " to kill," 
as they said, " the fighting orthodox." Mr. Hill joined 
them. 

After my separation from Mr. Hill, Mrs. Beecher was my 
sole adviser on all private matters, keeping and giving 
as circumstances required. Dr. Lyman Beecher and his 
wife beiDg at his son's, Wm. H. B., at this time of fiery ordeal 
Dr. Beecher, taking great interest in my case, would, 
whenever I was going to court or to seek for counsel, ere I 
started, say to all present in the room, "let us pray," and 
then he would invoke the divine blessing and guidance on 
my every move. When the court granted my divorce, 
they also gave me $3,000 alimony, which had to be 
drawn through bills in equity, Mr. Hill's brother contesting, 
&c. My last court and all claims liquidated in said Hill 
family March 22d, 1864, just twenty-one years from the day 
of my marriage. My father died February 29th, 1864. 
The reader may think this strange mingling, but the conclu- 
sions of this pamphlet will solve the enigma. 



25 

The winter term of 1871 and '2, I was engaged to teach 
in Oakham ; was examined for the same. After examination 
I learned I had one mile to walk from my boarding house ; 
assigned to school ; that was quite a set back to m} r feel- 
ings ; always having heard in my younger days " of people 
going out of this world into Oakham," and then add one 
mile, loomed up too much distance for me to foot — and 
having an application to teach the grammar school in Wales 
—end an able teacher was wishing for the Oakham position, 
which I most cheerfully gave over to his charge. Therefore 
I taught twelve weeks in Wales, boarding with my great 
uncle Dr. John Smith ; and my home, while there with him, 
was among my happiest associations. The scenery of its 
hills and dales was biblically romantic to me. 

March 28th, 1871, a writ of tort was served on me, to 
answer to whatever James Duncan might allege against me, 
a private attachment having been laid upon my property by 
him the lGth of January before. When Newton read that war- 
rant, a voice seemed to speak to me " bring an action before 
midnight! attach everything he owns at once!" It Avas 
then about ten o'clock, the anniversary day of the burial of my 
last born babe. I accordingly took the noon train for Wor- 
cester, went to Bacon & Aldrich for legal advice. They being 
out on some special business — waiting in greatest anxiety 
till about four o'clock, and their not returning — and know- 
ing my order must be obeyed — G. F. Yerry coming up stairs 
(ever before my opposing counsel), I asked his advice ; his 
reply was " If you don't serve your warrant on Duncan be- 
fore midnight, it cannot be entered next court." He accord- 
ingly filled out a warrant, and I returned home, giving it to 
Luther P. De Land, who served it on said Duncan, closing 
his livery, &c. Said James thereupon had to bestir himself 
and get out a replevin, Chas. Duncan being his bondsman. 
It agitated said James very much, and when brought before 
Squire Beecher with his bondsmen, he repeatedly asserted "It 
was not his doings, somebody else has brought this about." 
Squire Beecher says, " How does it happen this private 
attachment was laid upon Mrs. Hill's real estate by you 
January 16th ?" " Oh, he had that done when he was get- 



20 

ting his insurance. But he charged them not to do anything 
about it till they heard from him again, and they promised 
it should not be made known, etc." Chas. Duncan said 
" there was a mink in the wall somewhere." Duncan goes 
to Dr. Tyler to have it hushed up. F. Walker shows his 
talons by getting Emory Jenks to come to me to effect a 
settlement. Mr. Jenks came, and in due time informed M>. 
"Walker how he thought a settlement might be effected, &c. 
Mr. Walker pompously replied, " it must be stopped, each 
one paying his own costs — and on no other ground." It 
surprised Mr. C. E. Jenks, as he had a different conception of 
his application to him for to get adjudication of the same. 
During the preceding month Mrs. Duncan was heard to 
take my name in a libelous manner, therefore a warrant 
was issued for her to answer to said libel — Mr. T. M. Duncan 
being her bondsman. Duncan was often heard to say " I'll 
not stop till I make Miss Hill spend her last dollar — I'll fix 
her." James Duncan being a man of questionable morality 
— Mrs. Hill having offended his fiendish purposes — refusing 
to ride with him, and telling his wife the reason why, etc. 
His wife and their son Charles coming repeatedly to my 
residence to heal and reconcile the breach of friendship so 
ruthlessly sundered by Mr. Duncan's known trait of character. 
Mr. Duncan coming with his wife at last, was ready to 
do anything, and ask my forgiveness upon his knees (the 
date of which I have in my memorandum at home), if I 
would only forgive and appear cordial in his family as be- 
fore. I forgave — never to any one did I repeat his insult, 
except to Mrs. Beecher and Mrs. D. W. Lane — well know- 
ing that with those Christian women it would be kept silent 
as the grave. Mrs. Beecher regretted I had ever repeated 
it to Mrs. Duncan, as she was known to be a jealous spirit- 
ed frivolous woman ; she feared her vengeance would be 
turned on me with the same vigor as upon some others in 
our midst. 

Mrs. Duncan had often repeated, " if one place in town 
was cleaned out, tho great source of her misery and jeal- 
ousy, she should bo perfectly happy," etc. And would add, 
" if that house ain't emptied of its inmates will clear 



27 

that nest out clean." And, reader, that nest was cleaned 
out in the dead of night during one of tho most tempestuous 
storms known in our regions. When the insurance com- 
panies viewed the ruins, and learning the jealousy existing 
on the part of the family towards its inmates, he could not 
get his insurance blanket unless he could giro some reason 
that it had been the work of an incendiary out of his family. 
I will here instance, J. Duncan had had buildings burned 
three or four times before this one, the " Old Tavern " 
being one. I was, at this time, in New Haven, at Dutton 
Seminary, and it was written me there, that the firemen's 
hose was cut repeatedly to prevent, as it were, the extin- 
guishing of the flames. Readers, you will see insurance 
companies had been well bled by J. D. A tenant in said 
tavern, report has had it, was tenant in house last burned. 
And as I knew from his and his wife's own tongue the dire- 
ful jealousy on her part towards some inmates of the house, 
and Duncan well knowing my word " would drop as the 
rain and distil like the dew," and that latent unsatiated re- 
pulse above mentioned, and to cover their own sins my name 
was thus ignominiously dragged into the Superior Court at 
Worcester. Duncan taking as witnesses, scores of the ques- 
tionable minded, making gratuitous and bountiful spread of 
money, holding hundreds of dollars in his hands in bills, to 
be seen by all, tendering to those he had bought down there 
as mere tools. Alter a siege of five davs — about three of 
which were spent in hearing Duncan's witnesses, each one 
repeating the same thing — " they heard so and so," not one 
of the whole number could tell for his or her life who said 
it. Duncan alone criminating, for which State prison for 
life ought to be the sentence, and would be, if justice were 
executed. Duncan and wile and Jane Dale having a 
written programme which they had made up with their own 
vocabulary — learning to repeat it from day to day, each 
reciting to the other, from time to time, Duncan often say- 
ing to them, " you got this learnt, you won't have the papers 
to look on in court." An eye and ear witness of the above 
told the same to Dr. Tyler, and that paper or its copy was 
used in court by their lawyer, thus attempting to criminate 



28 

me, who was as innocent of the crime they were trying to 
allege to me as the blood of Christ. And I have yet first to 
believe that in no county, except the one mentioned, would 
such evidence be allowable on the court stand — neither 
in that county would such a scene take place before the 
war. As the sheriff and official places are rilled with men 
whose only qualification was their love for sporting, es- 
pecially hunting, having been trained in the army to hunt 
and kill. Literary qualifications were not an element in their 
being ; they learnt the requirements of their offices by prac- 
tice, and if officers thus employed violate the law constantly 
— the defendants are too often in the place of the " Old 

Legree slaves," " d n ye, we got ye, help yourself if you 

can," tlius compelled to surrender. And if there chances 
to be one who walks in uprightness and truth, and scorns, 
and bids defiance to their illegal traffic, they are set upon 
as if by bloodhounds to save the spoils to the tres- 
passer. And the advocate of justice and right is led to 
cry in anguish of soul, " Oh Lord, how long, how long !" 
The above court ended in my behalf, giving me a small pit- 
tance for libel damage ! James Duncan not trying his tort 
and private attachment on my property case against me. 
As my case against J. Duncan was to be tried in April, 
I wrote my counsel not to fail to have the case tried, as I 
was ready to meet it at its every issue. Not hearing from 
him, I went down the first day of court, in said April, and 
reaching the court house before 11 o'clock A. m., my lawyer 
and his had just had it dropped. My consternation was 
unbounded, when the clerk of the courts thus informed me. 
I then betook myself to Duncan's counsel, to get his ver- 
sion. He said, he " thought it outrageous for me to be kept 
in court, when my time and services ought to be in the 
school room." He regretted the past proceedings very 
much, and the citizens of North Brookfield were not willing 
the case should be continued longer. I replied, they were 
willing James Duncan should use my name liberally to get his 
insurance, and save money to that quarrelling church, to 
which the Duncans were great contributors. Skerry and F. 
Walker (James Duncan not a churchman), without one iota 



29 

of reason, except the money for their church, did work -with 
might, to ruin my character. My case was being reinstated 
in court against J. Duncan, by counsel employed in West- 
ern Massachusetts; and as I was going to the post office in 
North Brookfield, with a letter to said counsel, on the 25th of 
said April, in passing the "big shop," where ball-playing 
in the street front of said shop, was and had been, for years 
at times a dangerous nuisance — Mrs. De Bevoise, only the 
Friday evening before said day, had turned homeward, fear- 
ing she would be killed in passing the playing crowd in the 
street and ou the common front of Church, — about two o'clock 
said 25th April, by said crowd, I was struck by their club 
(wielded by Austin Adams), in this rabble, the blow fall- 
ing just above the right temple. After I came to my senses, 
so as to hear, not feeling any pain, and in total darkness 
for a length of time, my vision returned, but dim. My 
brother dressing the wound, carrying me home, in which 
state of numbness I remained some two days, when concus- 
sion set in, and my life hung quivering for days. I endured 
excruciating pain for weeks, and not once during said sick- 
ness was my mind broken, but calm, ever sinking, when 
weary for months, I was unable to work or read. It was 
more than six months before I could stoop without nausea. 

The following September, seven of the citizens called a 
town meeting, for the purpose of raising money as remunera- 
tion for injury received by me in the public street, by an 
acknowledged public nuisance. During timeof said warrant 
(report had it), F. Walker, S. Skerry, bestirred themselves to 
bring out the class of votes who had figured at the court for 
said gentlemen, telling said men " there was no law holding 
the town responsible for said injury, and we must all be 
there, for there is a " set here " who are going to vote to pay 
her damages." " Don't fail to be there, we'll close that town 
meeting as quick as it begins." And, reader, they did. Nat. 
Foster, meeting me subsequently (my countenance being most 
deathly), said he, " How are you getting over your injury?" 
"I'm not able to work yet, sir, nor read, the utmost care I 
have to take of myself. It seems hard that top of that 
Duncan outrage I should have added to my cup this physical 



30 

suffering, with loss of time, money, &c. And the town meet- 
ing held typifies the Christianity of this place. " You needn't 
think, or expect the town will pay ono cent that it's not 
obliged to." I replied, " I'll make a minute of your statement, 
I am impressed, sir, that it will be brought to notice some 
future time ; good-day." And, reader, but three church mem- 
bers of the church in which I am member, so much as gave 
me the cup of " cold water" during the above sickness. The 
very church that I had labored for, and contributed of my 
hard labor for its support years previous in open violation 
of my late husband's wish. 

The inhuman treatment from said church, and in open 
violation of all orthodox creeds, caused me to withdraw from 
attending church on Sabbath day, till said church should 
comply with congregational usages, " when a brother is of- 
fended, <fec," not one word said to me by said body till May 
16th, 1873, James Miller, Clerk Union Congregational Church, 
before mentioned, wrote me calling my attention to that part 
of the covenant which reads, " You engage to walk with the 
church in Christian fellowship and charity, to attend upon 
its ordinances, &o." Reader, even the minister of the said 
church did not call on me during my long sickness, notwith- 
standing I asked him to, at times when meeting him from 
home. Rev. De Bevoise and wife did watch with me, as 
their children had been under my instructions more or less 
since their citizenship ; " baby " De Bevoise, Cora and 
Charley Sampson, James Roice, were ministering angels on 
earth at that time to their old teacher. But the church, oh 
where, oh shame ! I think of you thus, " you will need 
Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water to cool your 
parched tongue in that hour." Should an orthodox 
minister chance to read this book, I trust you will hold the 
Union Congregational Church, North Brookfield, Mass., 
amenable to your discipline for this breach of orthodox 
creed, &c. 

Elmira City. — At the close of the institute at Elmira, I 
joined the excursion to Watkins Glen, with hundreds of 
professors and teachers, among them one who was our 



31 

instructor, and made plain the cause of this wonderful gorge 
in nature ; in passing under one of the high cascades, where 
evident drenching, at the least misstep was inevitable, Pres- 
ident McCosh and myself passed under, when the shout arose, 
" You will be Baptists when you get to the other side." 
Just emerging, sprinkled, said I, " Gentlemen shall we retain 
the name Baptist?" At 7 o'clock p. M., a party started on 
an excursion to Niagara Falls ; I was very weary, but deter- 
mined on seeing the falls e'er I returned to my home. 
Among the excursionists to the falls were President Northrup, 
President Harris of the National Institute, Abbot, Super- 
intendent of Schools, Brooklyn ; on reaching Buffalo, 12 m., 
I left said company to go to West Hamburg, to visit at John 
Smith's, eldest son of the John Smith before mentioned. 
As I had the day previous sent him a postal card informing 
him of my coming and asking him to meet me at Buffalo, 
upon stepping out of the cars upon the platform, within ten 
feet of me stood said Smith, and then waiting for the next 
train to take me to his pleasant home, glad indeed to 
remove my cindered apparel and cleanse myself of the 
blackening coal dust — which said vicinity has more than its 
double portion. His wife had a nice chicken breakfast 
waiting our coming, of which I partook very sparingly, say- 
ing, "you will please excuse me from everything of whatever 
name or nature, but sleep, that great restorer, twin sister to 
death, and when I emerge from that I'll visit, to your heart's 
satiety. Thus, good morning," and I went to my room for 
said repose, pledging them not to call me, but let me ap- 
pear, when fit thus to do. 

The day was near its close before I could really force to 
dress, which was arrested on throwing open the blind ; the 
broad front view, not thirty rods from my room lay a part 
of Lake Erie. Readers, there were more than forty, would not 
count the schooners, steamboats, sailboats, and whatever 
plies said lake in my broad view, each hurrying to and fro, 
with the rapidity of a dove, and as noiselessly, to me. ( That's 
a schooner I Oh, William, your noble, manly figure, with mind 
so thoroughly versed in learning, ready, and in the vineyard 
inparting of the abundance thereof.) Just for a rest, with 



32 

uncle's schooner, with pleasure sail, on the lake for Toledo, 
when, oh! ! that treacherous sand bank stops the schooner. 
"William and uncle swim for the shore. It's too much for 
William, and e'er eight and forty hours are numbered, the 
word goes forth, the remains of W r illiam Tyler will be for- 
warded to Capt. Roderick Williston, Sandusky City, Ohio, 
in next sailboat. "William, that's not the schooner and sail- 
boat I see, — I know ! ! !) 

Cousin and wife coming along under the window, saying, 
" We hear you." " I am glad to have something that will 
make you seem natural (talking to myself) ; wife, and I have 
been saying we should not suppose anything but death 
could have changed you so, and all from that accursed set 
of ball players." In the space of forty-eight hours more we 
are standing at Niagara Falls, on Canada side ; dine at the 
Clifton House. Next morning are breakfasting at Michigan 
Hotel, Detroit, with his son, Eugene Smith, eye and ear M. D. 
Next morning I am seated in the medical chair in his in- 
firmary, and with focus, &c. Dr. Smith says, " Tour optic 
nerve has been injured. You must take the greatest care 
and caution, and never overtask yourself in any way ; 
you are liable to be stone blind, from which you could never 
be restored. Have you ever received anything from that 
' street nuisance company, &c.' to help you along in your 
sickness and may be coming want?" "Not one cent." Then 
(there being several M. D.s present) the whole ball club 
blow and effects upon me was rehearsed, and it was the 
unanimous voice of all present " that such treatment as the 
citizens of North Brookfield, Mass., had thus publicly mani- 
fested, deserved the censure and contempt of all civilized 
humanity." Dr. S.: " My third cousin Hill here will stay 
there just because her father and mother, and so on, always 
did. Heavens ! I would run from that town if I had nothing 
more to start with than my first white garment ; but Mrs. 
Hill has got that local ' sticktewitiveness.' She'll stay there 
'till they kill her outright." The doctor fitted for me a pair 
of pebble glasses, which were the first I ever wore. 

I returned home after nineteen days roving, tired, but 
filled with new avenues of thought and pleasant associations 



33 

and scenes, fitting me to have choice treasures of thought 
ever coining forth to "while away this aisle of time. In the 
fall (November) I attended the Teachers' County Institute, 
at Ware, Mass., and was entertained in Dr. Richardson's 
family. Ob, how I love to think over the hours spent in 
that beautiful home ! For every moment there, new life 
and thought ought to issue. Dr. Richardson took me to the 
depot in his carriage. He, too, was in manifest anxiety for 
me, that new remedies might be applied, to aid, if possible, 
in averting that fearful prospective calamity that may come 
from that " ball club blow." 

The winter of 1873 and 1874 I commenced giving private 
lessons again, and glad, indeed, was I as I gained strength, 
that ray memory was equal with it as of old. The spring 
and summer of 1874 I fitted scholars for high school or 
preparatory for academies from home. In July, 1872, I at- 
tended the National Educational Association, in Elmira, 
N. T. — my health still very delicate. That meeting of the 
Association, and its happy reminiscences, are choice treasures 
in memory's hall. In the winter of 1874 and 1875 I had but 
three scholars, teaching book-keeping, advanced arithmetic, 
and a primary scholar. I was present at all public meetings 
that my health would admit, as reporter ; therefore, reader, I 
could give you almost verbatim reports of every town meet- 
ing during the }-ear and more ensuing. Reader, don't 
think, for a moment, I entered those public places without 
escort during said time. I had Tho. Ashby introduce me 
to J. Lombard, janitor and constable of said town, whom I 
addressed as follows : " I am correspondent so-and-so, and, 
wishing for correct statistics, therefore I ask you to give me 
a seat, and escort me to said platform, and from the same at 
the close of the meeting," which he acceded to, ever treat- 
ing me, during said time above mentioned, with the most 
decorous politeness. As I stated, the old church was re- 
dedicated October, 15th, 1874, and there followed a general 
withdrawal from the Union Congregational Church of its 
wealthiest members — rejoining and joining the First Con- 
gregational Church leaving (as report had it) not twenty 
members. 



34 

Chas. Duncan having been heard repeatedly to say, " Free- 
man Walker was the meanest man he ever knew, etc " ; also 
a remark of a notable gentleman in Southbridge years ago : 
" If North Brookfield has another man as mean as Sam 
Skerry, he should think the town would sink." 

Reader, my word for it : There are, in said town, at this 
time, more than twenty men that will beat these two gentle- 
men " all holler." I almost imagine, my readers, repeat- 
ing the following epitaph found chiselled on a grave stone : 

" There is a calm for those who weep, 

A rest foi weary pilgrims found ; 
They softly lie and sweetly sleep 

Low in the ground." 

Even J. Duncan, for whom the above mentioned had 
labored arduously to save for him " said insurance blanket" — 
he too, in less than sis months after, would not purchase 
meal of said Walker for a length of time, 'giving as a reason 
" he would not pay for twice the amount of meal he bought," 
etc. The Duncans were the first to leave the Union Con- 
gregational Church, also were the first with the Walkers in 
its organization. 

I think I am through with incidents foreign, as you may 
think, to the first page preface, but ere this enigma is 
solved, every different item will rind its place. 

And for your special amusement I will here pen an in- 
scription from a tombstone in East Tennessee : 

" She lived a life of virtue and died of the cholera morbus, 
caused by eating green fruit, in the hope of a blessed im- 
mortality, at the early age of 21 years 7 months and 16 days. 
Reader, go thou and do likewise." 

Died January 4th, 1874, Dr. Porter, physician in the town 
of North Brookfield for over forty years. Skillful and hand- 
some, thoroughly educated, with quick perception and sen- 
sitiveness not to be exceeded, and a staunch friend- of mine, 
in whose family I found rest when in anguish of soul, many 
times. His many cutting remarks about those who are 
now in rule in said town often^ come up before me. 
And when both of us, laboring in different ways for well- 
merited work, received abuse in diverse ways, after fully 



35 

analyzing our maltreatment, he would say, " Mrs: Hill, we 
shall have to take up with John Nye's motto, ' they will do 
their d — est, any how — -we must let 'em quilt.' " The 
saying is terribly coarse, but nevertheless true in this town. 
As my means were limited, Doctor P. had advised me to 
report for a newspaper, thus paying for some of the mental 
food I could not live without. It was months before I could 
make up my mind to do this, and when made up it was 
brought about in this way. After one of those Young Men's 
Christian Association gatherings, where singing and reading 
and repeating are continually held forth till the nervous, and 
frail minded are in ecstacies of joy such as have been read 
and talked about, the pulse is high and a glorious revival 
is aroused. (Readers, don't, I pray, think me trilling 
with sacred things, for it's far from me ; but I have not 
one particle of faith in that mode of claiming being "new 
born.") At one of these times some of the evangelists who 
had been recipients of the rich products in our midst, in 
getting into the stage (evangelist) remarks, "It's hard leaving 
after such a bountiful soul-refreshing jubilee as has come of 
our labor, here." 

In the stage, their ecstacies alone were the topic. On the 
train still comes the same, and more — did you ever meet 
with such open, liberal hearted people ! Thai's enough ! I 
had heard enough ; now is my time to give those "evange- 
lists " some real true colors, that color which Omnipotence 
alone can change, that those church professors have made. 
Turning my head sideway to them, I said I had not been 
permitted to enjoy that "soul refreshing." "Do you live 
there ?" " Yes, always ; it's my native place, and that of my 
fathers." " Pray what kept you away ?" "Two reasons — the 
last one, I seldom, or have not been out evenings since April, 
1872. At that time I was struck with a ball club upon the 
right side of my forehead, just above the temple, causing me 
to have concussion of the brain. My life was in a dangerous 
state for a length of time, and it was more than sis months 
before I could go down stairs, having to hold my head back- 
ward, otherwise dizziness and nausea was the inevitable, 
and to this day, when weary, the same in less degree mani- 



36 

fests itself. " Was it an accidental blow ?" Supposed to be 
so ; ball playing had been a terror in the streets many, many 
times for a few years past, or since the great increase of 
business in the " big shop," and upon that beautiful common 
front of the First Congregational Church. It had been held 
by law-abiding citizens a great and dangerous nuisance, as 
horses had been frightened many times, and balls been 
thrown through carriage windows, and people's lives before 
me had been jeopardized, but escaping without serious 
injury. My injury being so great, I was under direct 
physician's care for weeks and months before I could work. 
Some of our respectable citizens called a town meeting in 
September to do something for me, as my means were 
limited, and health apparently ruined, my eyesight especially 
most injured The town caused printed posters to be placed 
in legal manner, next day after my injury, notifying the in- 
habitants that ball playing was prohibited, it being a 
dangerous nuisance in the street. "Any one upon any street 
hereafter playing said game, whoever violates this warrant 
notice will suffer the penalty of the law." 

Town meeting met as called, and prominent church mem- 
bers were present, many of whom you have spoken of this 
morning. I will mention a few you have not alluded to, 
F. Walker, Augustus Smith, S. Skerry, C. E. Jenks, G. C. 
Lincoln, Eras. Hill, said gentlemen having labored busily 
during the seven days previous to bring out citizens to vote 
against my having any remunerative aid. As the town was 
not holden, the nuisance not being in the street 24 hours at a 
time, and it would not be safe for the town to remunerate 
such accidents, &c. Thus the meeting dissolved, and but 
two members of the Union Congregational Church, of which 
I am member, gave me so much as the cup of "cold water." 
Mr. Do Bevoise and wife watched one night with me ; Mrs. 
Hnston and Emma Lane labored for me, and Mrs. Freeman 
Walker of the Union Church. " There is something very 
strange about that,"— I think so, too. Do you think that 
Christ will say to those soul refreshed brothers and sisters, 
and the "new called" (it was at this very time "great 
outpouring," meetings were held seven days in the week), 



37 

" When I was sick ye administered unto me " ? "I know well 
from your appearance there is some other reason " (his 
dander icell up). You will remember I told you I I ad 
two reasons, &c, but, sir, your mind being in biblical 
lore, will you please repeat to me the passage of Scrip- 
ture where Christ gives an exceptional rule. " Madam, you 
do not manifest a Christian spirit in your conversation." 
" Perhaps not. Your spirit has changed somewhat within 
the past few minutes." "Madam, I wish this talk to end 
right here." " Very well, sir ; but I shall avail myself of 
giving you a verbal looking glass. (All eyes round about us 
were on us, some highly amused, and two frail sisters that 
had been taking that " soul refreshing " were in horror ). 
You, sir, are angered as quickly as any one. "When you 
entered the stage your cup of happiness seemed bubbling 
over, and my opinion is, it was the effects of a good break- 
fast and night's rest, that your physique is enjoying without 
break or expense. And without doubt your purse is filled 
also for such unnecesary ' work ' (as you term it) that keeps 
a hobby for people thus provided for, from performing' an 
act that will meet them for the kingdom. The spirit, look, 
cut of your jib, shows you are not what you profess. I am 
through." 

At home, next day, at an old acquaintance, whose 
husband had died not long before, when she came into the 
room — "You here! from what I heard of you on the cars 
yesterday, I think the place for you is the insane hospital ; 
and some one who heard what you said, hoped Mr. Evan- 
gelist would have you put there." I passed out. 

Meeting the president of the Young Men's Christian As- 
sociation, I said (feeling somewhat excited) : "I was going 
to ask you something about scholars this coming winter 
that I may keep myselr from dire want ere long." 

President : " Nobody will care whether you come to want 
'ere long ' or oiow, if you are going to talk as you did on 
the cars, &c. (one of the sisters living near him). It is the 
general opinion you ought to be sent to the insane hospital." 
What purely devilish results comes of these " soul refresh- 
ings ;" how quick it springeth up! Why the devil's choir 
those evangelists made here are now chanting loud I! 



38 

I passed on my way ; said president his way. 

But, readers, the above gave me the backbone to go to 
town meetings, &c, to report for a newspaper, but I have 
never been to report from those refreshing meetings. I will 
here state that the First Congregationalist Church attempted 
to drive out at this time a singer (and one of the best) from 
the choir ; to effect it every singer, forty more or less, left 
the choir on Sabbath, and such a "high " as that was can- 
not be equalled. I'll guarantee — do your best. You will 
remember the year is 1874, and report has it that T. C. 
Bates made application (or some sign) he would join the 
Masons, and at the meeting in Brookfield his desire was re- 
fused by the " black ball." Bates having the " sticktewitive- 
ness and goaheditiveness : ' (as Josh Billings tells about) he 
enters the Queen's dominions, and, while there, is initiated a 
mason, returns to North Brookfield, " meeting upon the 
level and parting upon the square." Oh what words of 
blissful meaning those words masonic are. Thus I hope 
the reader will follow those above mentioned characteristics, 
and apply them to the individuals in this book who will show 
legal heirship to them. 

As I have stated before, the town was pledged to have 
the railroad built and fully equipped with rolling stock for the 
sum of $100,000, by the glass and crockery ware drummer. 
He says, if we find, or it can be proved, said railroad, etc., 
cannot be built and stocked for the sum above mentioued, 
he should go against it as strong as any other man!!! I 
will here pen, for the benefit ol the reader, " Engineer 
Keith's report of the railroad route through the Tyler farm, 
the maximum grade being 116 feet per mile, terminus on 
the King and Bacheller lot ; " but readers, there 1 is a mile 
rise in said route, "report has it," that is over 300 feet, 
together* with curves«necessary to go through said farm (in 
order to save a longer cut, and fill through the Kimball 
worthless hill and vale), thus crossing the road between 
Hill and Tyler farm ; removing heavy stone walls upon 
Tyler's farm ; cutting through mowings ; one cut of 14 feet; 
said wall and part of the earth taken to help fill what was 
called by the " gang " bottomless mud-hole in the Kimball 



39 

swamp, and then a fill of 16 feet over soil four and five 
feet deep, and spoiling valuable building lots, and swallow- 
ing up over six acres of said farm, leaving small, not get- 
atable lots, and other portions in trapezurns, trapezoids, 
obtuse and acute angles, in other words, a direct curve line 
from southeast to northwest, with a rise- that, demands two 
engines' power to get (with freight, &c.,) thr.uigh the Tyler 
farm, in order to have the depot where it is now located for 
special accommodations of the " big shop " and stores. 

Few business men indeed shall we get to come into town to 
compete with those stores and " big shop." 

A. & H. Bacheller & Co. now take stock to the amount of 
13,000 witli the depot located within ten rods of the " big- 
shop." The track crossing at the junction of Elm and 
School streets, on the main road without expense to said 
firm, but to lay straight track side of road bed. Which 
proceedings the County Commissioner came and complied 
with, April 28th, 1876. Said railroad, the directors dedi- 
cated January 1st, 1876. As I had been most insolently 
refused the right of a disinterested appraisal of my land sur- 
veyed, and set off for said railroad, before the taking of the 
same, necessitating my calling on the County Commissioner 
in said July, and it pleased said " honorable body," to ap- 
point the 15th day of October, to view the same. The rail- 
road work commenced in said July above mentioned in 
different sections on the Tyler farm, being such that the 
railroad bed upon said farm was first completed. Thus in 
August the town road (dividing my land) was filled up seven 
feet high, depriving me of my direct access to said land to 
remove my crops, &c. Before the " gang " commenced fill- 
ing up said road I protested, forbiding its being done to the 
selectmen, railroad president and directors — repeating to 
said " Bonum," the statute law of taking and crossing public 
highways as County Commissioners may direct, etc. Their 
contemptuous disregard to my every request must be appar- 
ent to the reader. I applied repeatedly to G. C. Lincoln, 
(a Selectman,) to assist me in my effort for legal rights. 
Lincoln ; "What will be the use? you only hurt yourself in 
the estimation of the railroad men in thus demanding these 



40 

frivolous exactions of the law, and my advice to you is to 
hofd 3-our tongue." I said, "Mr. Lincoln, how long would you 
hold on to your tongue if a poor boy in his starving want 
should take a lew cents or pair of stockings from your public 
store," <tc? Lincoln : " That's a different thing." " Very true 
sir, and very small importance compared with my wholesale 
robbery. I know well what your legal investigation of the 
poor boy, and your sentence to reform school would be." 

The work lucnt on, laiv or no law. The disqualified ap- 
praisers labored, figured, offering other claimants different 
assessments, eventually affecting a settlement with all but 
five, only a few days previous to the 15th of October ; they 
too called for County Commissioner to appraise, said five, 
adroitly succeeding with Commissioners in getting theirs 
appraised through not applying " till past the last watch," 
the Friday previous to the 15th of October. 

Report has it some of the Directors had many interviews 
with Commissioner, (which I hope will yet be explained,) 
enabling said body to have profile, perhaps, of parties, &c, 
through the Directors' microscope. 

October loth, 1875, 9 o'clock A. M. — The County Commis- 
sioners met at my residence (by special request), also an 
eminent lawyer from Worcester on my part and for the town 
four or five railroad defendants. Prominent among them 
was advisory " W," one whom I had objected to in writing, 
before mentioned, as a disqualified appraiser, said railroad 
company refusing to hear my prayer, &c, thus compelling 
me to call the County Commissioners. And at this eleventh 
hour, (the railroad bed having been built through my land 
weeks previous) the coming of these legal three of the 
county board, to have F. Walker thrust upon me (as defense 
for the railroad) in my own house, was, reader, crowning 
their illegal traffic with outrageous insult. The gentlemen 
being seated, I addressed them thus: "Gentlemen, — I invited 
you at this time to my residence for the hearing of my claim 
for which you have now convened, to avoid the public noto- 
riety which would be had this meeting been in Town Hall." 
Turning to F. Walker : "I am surprised, sir, at your presence 



41 

here." Walker : "I am here officially, madam." I passed out 
into my little room, front (as it were to take on force) ; com- 
ing in, facing the audience, whom I addressed thus: "Gentle- 
men, F. "Walker has for the last few years been my notorious 
enemy, and an enemy I have reasons to loathe as I would 
Satan himself, and, gentlemen, if you permit Walker to re- 
main here in my house, I shall leave it at once." V. Taft, 
chairman of the commissioners, rose and said, " We will ad- 
journ for the purpose of viewing your land taken,&c, and then 
we will be prepared for further purposes," &c. I just wept. 
My counsel present said to me, " It's not necessary for you 
to go down with us, as it rains ; you had better not." Fur- 
nishing the three gentlemen with umbrellas, they set off, 
Walker following. 

During their absence, I resolutely bestirred myself prepar- 
ing every minutiae for dinner. My table was laid early after 
breakfast, and all preparations duly made for a sumptuous 
dinner for said gentlemen. I will alsoproceedto show my care- 
ful preparations by engaging at Chas. Bush's livery stable his 
best span and coach, to convey said honorable body to and 
from my residence from depot, as case required, charging 
said Bush not to fail on their arrival to take the select body 
as soon as the legal ceremony of calling said meeting to 
order in the Town Hall, and adjournment to my residence, &c. 
Saying to Bush, " For all extras, pains, and courtesy, &c, I 
pledge you I will pay, as well as your regular fee, at the close 
of said day." Bush agreed to the same. Header, imagine 
my astonishment; some 15 minutes in advance of said time, 
my bell rang, and at the door I met my counsel's partner, 
and after due ceremony, I said to him " I had coach and 
driver waiting for your honorable body when they should 
come out of the Hall." Esquire: " I saw no such prospect " 
there ; and soon came the deputized gentlemen en masse, 
no coach and span I After all my pre-arrangements, those 
gentlemen were footing it just like us poor " clod hopping " 
mortals. Upon return of said legal body, report had it. F. 
Walker was coming back into the house, whereupon the 
chairman of said body told " W." he must not. W. says: 
" Mrs. Hill's awful temper in this matter must be subdued." 



42 

Commissioner : " I think, sir, your temper is decidedly in 
advance of Mrs. Hill, and I repeat, you must not go again 
into Mrs. Hill's house." It was then raining hard. 

The meeting being in order, I was called on to state my 
case in full, &c, viz. : In the first place, the straight railroad 
route would be through Kimball's hill ; then it would not 
have crossed my first mowing — at the most it would take but 
a small corner off my lower mowing ; but to save a deeper 
cut, and longer fill, through the worthless land above de- 
scribed, they have ruined my first mowing from ever having 
a building upon it, which I had designed to build ; and my 
plans were near being consummated ; and have destroyed 
two other building lots, which I have been urged repeatedly 
to sell. My mowing lots have been very valuable on account 
of the income of grass to cut, which I have sold standing re- 
peatedly for $60, $75 and $85 per year. They have also re- 
moved heavy stone walls, and placed as a boundary line, a 
trail fence, which, as the neighbors and other farming men 
say, " a good-sized two-year old could get through between 
the boards, and a medium push would level the whole line." 
I had also to cut thirty-nine valuable trees. They gave me 
no chance to remove soil. They also filled up the highway, 
dividing my land, seven feet, without legal advice and against 
my remonstrance. The filling as it now stands is dangerous, 
and it will not be possible to bring up a load without more 
than twice the power before used. 

There are two acres cut off in my lower mowing — being 
surrounded by three steep, high grades, thus reducing the 
value of the same in every way. The corner cut off in my 
first mowing, which is bounded by large walnut and ash trees, 
I have no access to. Mr. Cram, the builder of the railroad, 
and Doty, both told me to demand a crossing at this place' 
(notwithstanding the corner contains, as you see, but few rods 
of land), as they could make there a crossing, the expense 
of which, to them, would be less than five dollars. I made 
such demand, and it has been thus far refused. 

Also I demanded a wide driveway, crossing from my wal- 
nut grove lot over said railroad, leading into my lower mow- 
ing ; its course to be from the bars that led from the above 



43 

grove lot in said mowing — said opening having been there 
more than fifty years. The railroad company refusing this 
application, you must have noticed the acute angle of mow- 
ing left with the heavy wall, and an acre of land there being 
surrounded, and lying in such shape, is but little better than 
lost to me. My income from fruit, nuts, grass, &c, has 
given me yearly from $100 to $125. Now the railroad has 
laid open for wholesale theft from the "rambling hordes" 
that work in that "big shop 1 ' ; the products which are not 
already in a similar "crib" will be very small in prospective 
compared with the past. In conclusion, that railroad, as it 
is built through my seven and a half acres of valuable land, 
in curve line from northeast to southwest, takes therefrom 
one and a half acres, more or less. 

Commissioner : " "What assessment did the directors 
figure?" Alden Bacheller, hastily replying — " We with- 
draw that." Commissioner: " What did they estimate?" (I 
must say, reader, I had an internal ironical smile, being inter- 
preted : you are going to make it the "gauge" for your esti- 
mate?) Nevertheless, I promptly informed them, adding: 
" On my brother's claim at the homestead they made more 
than double the assessment, and not injured one-tenth as 
bad as myself." And the doctor's land (I will here state Dr. 
Tyler is my own full-blooded brother, being eight years my 
senior in this " mundane sphere") was benefitted niany, many 
hundreds of dollars, as is evident to be seen by all in the 
work and back boundary it has given him. Readers, do not 
think my brother's land was overestimated ; for it 's far from 
that ! ! ! 

I will here pen (the doctor's land was the land I 
asked for ; could I have my choice, &c, in the division of my 
father's estate. And bonum magnum Nye was playing 
the same game then, that he is to-day against me). I 
should think Freeman Walker had spent a fortnight, more 
or less, to adjudicate Lewis Whiting's claim. The different 
assessment of which I have stated, also stating more than half 
of said Whiting's land, my father sold him at a price some 
20 years since. Being through, the defendants were called 
upon (said gentlemen had not a word to say). The glance 



u 

of my eye upon B. M. Nye — with small " pig eyes," was seen 
by me, — I'll arrange this with the commissioners without au- 
dience. Header, I clearly foresaw his arranged plot. A few 
words from the legal men present, and said commissioners 
then adjourned to the Town Hall, at 1 o'clock, p.m., to finish 
their adjourned meeting of the week previous. ... I 
then extended my invitations to said body to have dinner 
with me, which was ready waiting. The flavor thereof they 
could not mistake. B. M. Nye thought it not best, and, of 
course, they must refuse on account of so much business, 
<fec. . . . The gentlemen leaving, the lawyer taking the 
noon train, I verbally regretted the non-appearance of the 
hired coach for their special conveyance, the reason why I 
could not conceive. "Therefore, you will please excuse me, 
for, gentlemen, when I asked you this favor to come to this 
house for a hearing, and you courteously complied, I forth- 
with engaged coach and driver to wait on you here and back, 
and when I learn the reason said coach was not here I will 
write you. Could those men have stepped out then and 
there into an anteroom and assessed my land damage, I have 
not one doubt but it would leave been satisfactory to me. 
Reader, Nye knew well the part to play, which will be con- 
cluded in subsequent pages. 

To make this book more concise, I will here say, the next 
morning I went to said livery stables, to learn the cause of 
said engagement not being fulfilled. Said proprietor reply- 
ing, " I forgot all about it, honestly, and went away in the 
morning early — had I been at home, it would have come up, 
and I would have been on hand as agreed." Selah. 

You have read of the serpent on the rock ; he had crawled 
off, and was down in the midst — my interpretation of said 
neglect. 

Within a few days I dispatched four letters to the four 
legal gentlemen interested, informing them it was owing to 
the treacherous memory of said "livery stable man," and his 
absence from home said day, was the reason, the coach 
hired was not at their service said 15th day of October, 1875. 

Respectful ly, 

E. R. Hill. 



45 

Adjourned Town Meeting — March 1st, 1875, 

1 o'clock P.M. 

Hon. C. Adams, Jr., in behalf of the Committee on Finance: 
The committee chosen by the town on the 24th day of 
January last, to act with your treasurer in negotiating a 
loan of ninety thousand dollars, and pay the subscription of 
the town and the stock of the North Brookfield Railroad 
Company, beg leave to report they have attended to that 
service by enquiring into the state of the money market as 
they have had opportunity. They find the present a very 
favorable time for negotiating a loan of any kind where the 
security is good. Money can be had at a lower rate now 
than at any time for several years past, especially on 'short 
time, lenders preferring the shortest loans hoping and ex- 
pecting to obtain much higher rates when their short invest- 
ments mature. The ordinary rates'at which savings banks 
are lending money at a term of years is about seven per 
cent., but trustees and others knowing changes of trust and 
sinking funds are letting money §} 2 per cent, for a term of 
years. Just now the supply is greater than the demand afc. 
that rate, and it is possible the rate may go lower, but a 
revival of business, or even a prospect of it, would be sure 
to carry it higher. We believe it would be safest for the 
town to secure its loan very soon. We think the rate could 
not now be over Q>\ per cent., and possibly it could be ob- 
tained at a fraction lower. This would or might depend on 
the time on which the money is wanted. 

The committee would recommend that the town decide by 
vote how soon they will begin to pay off the loan, and how 
much they will pay each year, and also vote the rate of in- 
terest paid shall not exceed 7 per cent, semi-annually ; also 
authorize their agents, whoever they may be, to negotiate 
the loan at an early day, and at the lowest possible rate. 
North Brookfield, Feb. 27, 1875. 

Respectfully submitted, 

Charles Adams, Jr., 

B. Nye, 

S. S. Edmunds, 

Committee. 



46 

Voted to lay the foregoing report upon the table, to be 
taken up at an adjourned meeting. 

The Directors made an informal report which was not in- 
tended for record or filing. Voted to adjourn this meeting 
until three weeks from to-day, March 22d, 1877, at one 
o'clock p. M. 

Hiram Knight, 

Town Clerk. 

Adjourned Railroad town meeting, March 22d, 1875, at 
one o'clock p.m.; said meeting adjourned to Monday, April 
5th, 1875, at two o'clock, p.m. Said meeting adjourned to 
Monday, April 26th, 1875, at two o'clock p.m. 

Adjourned Railroad meeting, April 2Gth, 1875, two o'clock 
P.M. — B. Nye, President of the N. B. R. R. Co., verbally re- 
ported that the directors are not fully prepared to report to- 
day, and made a motion to adjourn for one week, until Mon- 
day, May 3d, 1875, at two o'clock p.m. 

Voted in the affirmative. 

Town Meeting, June 7th, 1875. 

At town meeting, June 7th, 1875, the discussions for and 
against railroads were sharp and bitter, and arguments that 
the surveyed railroads would cost from one-third to one-half 
more than the town subscribed, according to the railroad 
statistics read, Bates blowed off the following : 

" If it can be proven that the railroad between North and 
East Brookfield cannot be built and fully equipped for 
$100,000, I shall go against it as strong as any other man 
here. These imaginary bugbears are being brought forward 
to dampen and prevent this great enterprise from being con- 
summated. I pledge to you, citizens, again, said road can 
and will be built, fully equipped with rolling stock, within 
the sum of $100,000." Roars of cheers T\ ! 

Therefore, the motion made by T. C. Bates, That our 
town treasurer be authorized and instructed to borrow the 
sum of nine thousand dollars ($9,000), and pay the same to 
the treasurer of the North Brookfield Railroad Company, as 
ten per cent, assessment on the subscription of ninety thou- 



47 

sand dollars by Hie town of North Brookfield to the capital 
stock of the North Brookfield Railroad Company. 

Carried by a large majority. 

Voted to adjourn to June 14th, 1875, at 10 o'clock, a. m. 

Adjourned Town Meeting, June 14th, 1875. 

Dr. Tyler, Chairman of the Board of selectmen, addressed 
the citizens as follows : 

" The town has saddled a debt on their back of $90,000 
for the ' baby,' and most likely before the young one can go 
alone we shall be called on for one-third or one half as much 
more for its supplies. I am against my children and children's 
children — [the doctor has not a child, nor never had] — being 
cursed with this cumbrous debt; and I move that the town 
pay said $90,000 in ten annual instalments." 

This was a set-back to the railroad men. Angus Smith, 
J. F. Hebard, Alden and Ezra Bacheller, Timothy Clark, in 
fact, all of the rabid railroad men opposed Dr. Tyler's mo- 
tion unrelentingly. Said men proposing to pay only the 
interest on the loan for five or ten years; after that, $1,500 
per year. 

The motion of Dr. Tyler was carried. 

It is but justice to the parties who have caused this illegal 
debt to be paid in ten annual installments, four-fifths of 
whom were against the building of said road (thus most con- 
clusively proving the illegality of the former vote.) The 
lively lamentation of those railroad men upon prospective 
taxation was sarcastically amusing to me. Those very men, 
who are going to be recipients of cheap freight, <fec. ; and 
had demanded, with all the force they could bring, that the 
railroad must be built, or I can't do business here. Oh, 
where else could be found such " Solomons !" 

June 14th, 1875. 

Voted, on motion of Hon. Chas. Adams, Jr., " That the 
treasurer be and he is hereby authorized and directed to 
borrow of the commonwealth of Massachusetts, or of some 



48 

other party or parties, on the credit of the town, a sum not 
exceeding ninety thousand dollars in amount, as may be re- 
quired by the directors, and to give therefor the notes or 
bonds of the town, approved by the selectmen, payable 
nine thousand dollars each year, commencing with the 
present year and ending with the year 1884, both inclusive, 
bearing interest at a rate not exceeding seven per cent. (7%) 
annually, paj^able semi-annually, for the purpose of paying 
the subscription of the town to the capital stock of the 
North Brookfield Railroad Company, made agreeably to 
the vote of the town passed on the twenty-ninth day of 
January, 1875. 

Voted to adjourn for three weeks from to-day (July 5th, 
1875) at one o'clock p. m. 

Hiram Knight, Town Clerk. 

Records of town meeting held June 14th, 1875, under a 
new warrant : 

Voted, under Article 2, That the town raise by taxation 
the present year nine thousand dollars, for the purpose con- 
templated in the warrant, to wit, to pay the amount which 
the town authorized the treasurer to borrow June 7th, 
1875, and act thereon. 

Article 3d. Voted that the town raise by taxation the 
present year the sum of twenty-five hundred dollars to pay 
interest on money that has been and may be borrowed to 
pay for the railroad. Voted to dissolve this meeting. 

Hiram Knight, Town Clerk. 

July 5th, 1875. 
Adjourned railroad meeting opened at one o'clock P. M. 
Voted to dissolve this meeting. 

H. Knight, Town Clerk. 

July, 1875, George C. Cram contracted to build said rail- 
road for the sum of $65,000 (not having the statistics with 
me, I shall be obliged to omit what I designed at this 
point) ; therefore said Cram came on with men, horses, and 
donkeys, locating on my father's farm, now Dr. Tyler's pas- 
ture. Next day after their arrival, I called at the Bachel- 



49 

ler House, to see said gentleman, and Mr. Doty, his secretary, 
came forward with a peculiar smirk of readiness to answer 
whatever I might suggest. Says I, " You are not Mr. Cram, 
if I have been rightly informed." Doty : " No, ma'am ; but 
anything you might desire I am instructed to attend to." 
" Very well, sir ; if Mr. Cram does not choose to come for- 
ward, I shall only say to you to say to said Cram, I forbid 
said Cram, or any of his gang, occupying my farm for the 
purpose of building a railroad bed, for which he has en- 
tered into contract. My land surveyed has not been legally 
appraised, therefore he must not disturb the same till it is 
legally in railroad custody." Doty : " Be seated, Mrs. Hill ; 
I will speak to Mr. Cram." " Mr. Cram, Mrs. Hill." " Mr. 
Cram, I had hoped to have had my land appraised, &c, be- 
fore your coming ; as I have not been able to bring it about, 
though making strenuous efforts, I shall have to ask you to 
locate your men somewhere else, the day you intend to com- 
mence work on my land." " Mrs. Hill, I have been thoroughly 
warned that I may expect much trouble with you, your 
brother, and one or two others ; but I can manage you, and I 
will give you notice now, unless your crops are removed in 
such a length of time, I will destroy your crops, regardless of 
you entirely." " I regret, sir, very much, that you, seeming 
capable of performing a $G5,000 job, should begin it by vio- 
lating the statutes, thus holding yourself amenable to the 
law ; and, sir, I shall protect myself and rights at all hazard." 
Thus I left, the railroad fools muttering about and with 
glistening ferocity, as if they would tear me limb from limb. 

I repeated to Alden Bacheller the above. He replied : 
"Mrs. Hill, I will guarantee you shall have satisfactory pay 
for your land. Mr. Stone and I have been talking it over, 
and you may rest assured it shall be made right with you." 
I left, went to Mr. Leach, and engaged him to cut my grass 
in both mcwings south of the north railroad line staked off, 
and he proceeded at once to execute my wish — the grass 
was almost ruinously trampled by the hordes who went over 
it previously. Mr. Cram did not press matters as in his 
haste he had suggested, said haste being made by pread- 
vised citizens. 
4 



50 

The path being clear some days before, the "posse" 
ruthlessly stripped me of my best portion of rny father's in- 
heritance of this world's estate. Dailj' I passed among the 
"gang" at work, gathering items, as fast as matured, for 
the press. Header, the overseers, to a man, took my part 
(so far as appearances tell) ; thus r when McNulety began to 
despoil my land, as directed, he also protected the adjoining 
land. And never did I receive kinder treatment than from 
McNulety and his gang, Cram and Doty leading off in the 
same way, Mr. Cram saying repeatedly at the table, within 
two weeks after the above, at Bacheller's house : " Mrs. 
Hill, instead of being a disturbing annoyance, as he- was in- 
formed, was the most sensible, used discreet judgment, 
and made ready for his work better than any one else on 
the route. We all like her very much." 

Thus that peculiar snobbery of North Brookfield was 
throttled. 

Mr. Cram, Doty, overseers and I, are just so yet. 

Erastus Hill and Sherman built the culvert under the filling 
of sixteen feet, said Hill telling his men to draw off some cap 
stone I desired for my wall, where others had been removed 
to place under grave stones and monuments from time to 
time, which he did. I will here relate a little incident to 
keep up the North Brookfield styles. Those stones remain- 
ed for a year just where they were laid, being drawn to said 
place on a new style stone-boat, with heavy yokes of cattle. 
Being in the grave yard, I asked Perry to put the wall up 
and make an entrance somewhere else than said corner. 
Perry: "I want those stones you have stolen and got over in 
your lot." " What do you mean, sir ?" Perry : " Those stones 
came off the corner, and Tucker says everybody knows it." 
" And how came they there ? " Perry : " Why, you or your 

men have put them there." "You most contemptible , 

one would suppose those stones of tons weight were piled 
there as you would so many snow balls ; and, sir, I warn 
you, from what your wife, whom your freaks have located 
in the hospital, till a new doctor has been pieced in said 
hospital, who has informed you and the public she cannot 
stay there, not being crazy, the town aiding Perry each 



51 

time, lias told me, I warn you not to remove any more flat, 
thin stones from my wall for walks, etc. Said wife Las 
repeatedly told me Perry wishes you were compelled to 
sell that land ' to him.' " 

I employed a man for days removing some nice top stones 
from my half of the wall taken and placed upon my land, 
beyond the railroad line. And every stone was eventually 
taken (stolen), and used about fillings in making abutments, 
which will, ere long, be investigated. 

I commenced my brick vault in the cemetery in June, 1875, 
the work not being completed till fall ; said cemented vault 
being finished like a room — removing my four lost boys from 
a new hewn-stone tomb built by my late husband in 1858, 
at homestead. Also I placed the remains of his former wife 
in the Jonas Bigelow tomb, where she was first entombed. 
The two men who had been under my employ for weeks — 
when they had placed my predecessors where I directed, 
closing said door, repeated, " Susan, farewell !" " Oh, hold 
me up a minute. My God! if you ain't a hero, there ain't 
one on the globe." 

December 1st return from the county commissioners 
with $40 in advance of the director's appraisal ; no mention 
made of the bonds I had required, by counsel before men- 
tioned, sending letter at the same time ; the bill fee of the 
commissioners, $21, and costs, to be forwarded at once, 
adding it would eventually be returned to me. Next mail I 
informed said counsel I could not comply with his request. 

As the commissioners' proceedings were not legally trans- 
acted, therefore they must bide their time (with some oth- 
ers), and collect said amount from the town. December 
28th, 29th, 30th, I was in attendance at the Massachusetts 
Teachers' Institute in Boston (of which I have been member 
since 1867), and there the following legal illumination was 
given me. (The railroad was going to be dedicated 1st 
January, 1876.) 

"^ou go home and tell those railroad directors the land 
and the railroad upon the same is your legal property, and 
you forbid their trespassing upon the same until they have 
paid you, or given suitable bonds for the same." I gave 



52 

said president and directors the above notice when bonum 
magnum NYE replied, "We have complied with all the com- 
missioners' requirements in full., and shall do nothing more," 
<fec. 

" Sirs, — I give you till eleven o'clock this p. m. to comply 
with my request above mentioned. Should you fail thus to 
do, I shall to-morrow morning (which was railroad dedication 
day) take my chair and seat myself upon my railroad track, 
and should you attempt to go over the same with the engine, 
said engine will take me in advance." Alden Bacheller and 
others whispered with Nye and Bates, Bates loudly asking 
" How much bonds do you want? " I stating $3,000, naming 
bondsmen. Bates : "Who told you to ask that ?" "Mrs. E. E." 
A general smile, Nye saying "We will comply." And B. M. 
Nye and John Dewing came, bringing me the bonds, with one 
signature, I had asked. I accepted readily, bondsmen John 
Dewing, Wm. Montague, Alden Bacheller-, Dewing and 
Nye having " invited me to join in the exercises in the 
morning." I replied, "I have had a chiil from wind blowing 
on me in the cars coming home this eve, and from my feel- 
ings now, the inevitable to-morrow will find me too lame for 
public exhibition." Readers, within forty-eight hours I was 
under doctor's care, and did not go outdoors for more than six 
weeks — one of my severe rheumatic sicknesses. During 
said sickness, B. Nye and G. C. Lincoln came to my house 
and tendered me the assessments of the county commis- 
sioners. They were not accepted. A few more days passed, 
when they came again, having forgotten to tender 
the interest ; having two or three kinds of moving 
sticks around me, that is, to aid in moving myself, 
said gentlemen thought they were not nice enough. I replied, 
" I have hinted divers ways since the rap with the ball club 
on my head, the necessity of a gold-headed cane and 
crutch, and will renew by asking you at this time to see that 
I have them forthcoming through your special instrumen- 
tality," Nye saying, " You shall have them." But they 
have not arrived yet. 

That the readers of this sketch-book may know how the 
Tyler farm of 200 acres, more or less, has been sold in lots 



53 

of different measure : First, 80 acres, more or less, to my 
brother-in-law, Win. Stoddard, containing heavy chestnut 
woods ; said Stoddard having the same for half of its real 
value. Father giving the other part to his eldest daughter, 
said Stoddard's wife. (1845.) 

The next parcel of 12 acres, more or less, to the inhabit- 
ants of the town of North Brookfield, for the sum of ($1,800) 
eighteen hundred and some cents ; said lessees are to build 
the wall and ever keep the same in repair without expense 
to father or heirs. This time brother William died, 22 
years of age, almost unfitting father for labor. 

The above is "Walnut Grove Cemetery ; the last portion 
being most worthless pasture. You will plainly see my east 
boundary graveyard wall is 56 rods and links. 

This was sold after the sudden death of brother Albert 
(drowned), 20 years of age, at Sturbridge, Mass., where he 
was studying law with Esquire Hyde. 

Esquire Hyde, Dr. of the said town, and five others were 
in the pond bathing with Albert, when he went down not to 
rise without aid ! ! ! (1S54.) 

The next j)arcel sold to Amos Dean (now owned by 
Walter Howe), containing 3 acres, more or less, for ($900) 
nine hundred dollars ; said Dean to build the wall and keep 
in repair this 3 acre lot, is west end of the Tyler farm north 
of the main road, North Brookfield to East Brookfield ; said 
lot having about 12 rods front. And a neck land back of 
said 3 acres, father sold to Lewis Whiting, which the rail- 
road had in its bed. (1856.) 

Upon south side of said road, father sold to J. F. Hebard, 
a chestnut wood lot, some 20 rods to 40 rods front, for 
$1,000, and mowing land back of said chestnut woods, for 
$100 per acre. 

There were six building lots sold off from the Chestnut 
running back 10 rods, containing about one-half acre each, 
for nearly $300 each ; each lot being in cut of wood condi- 
tion. Land above described not to be compared with mine 
(7\ acres) for locality and products. (1857.) 

Dr. Tyler was at this time in Medical College, Philadel- 
phia. 1 have the exact figures of the above at my home in 



54 

North Brookfield, Mass., and by memory, which I have 
down. 

In Jnly, 1875, I was applied to from a parent to instruct 
Willie that he might be able to enter the High School. His 
examination papers (after the close of Grammar Schoolj, for 
admission to the above school, were an entire failure. I 
was surprised, as he had been my scholar, both public and 
private, with James De Bevoise, some time before. 

Thus, having a two-fold interest, I said if the schools in 
which he had been had not " muddled him," I had no 
doubt that I could instruct him, making him eligible for 
above school. Willie Bacheller commenced recitation July 
15th, and on the 16th, after recitation, my valuable gold 
watch (I paid $68 in 1866,) was stolen from my recitation 
table by John McCarty, 9 years old, who had, during recita- 
tion, come to my door and asked to pick some cherries (it 
was granted). I passed out after recitation with Willie, 
stopping under the cherry tree ; Willie fixing the ladder that 
the boy might pick me some too (he appeared a pretty 
boy) ; I passing about ten rods east of said boy to Mr. 
Sampson's shop window to borrow some implement for 
the hired man, &c. 

Mr. Sampson avers "I did not stop five minutes," — re- 
turning into my own yard, said boy came off the tree, was 
under the hedge some two rods from the tree. Mrs. Haston's 
neighbor, in coming to my house, halted at said boy to see 
what mischief he was at. I said, " Mrs. Haston, please come 
right along and be seated, while I carry this so and so"; — (fif- 
teen minutes had not gone since Willie and I left the recita- 
tion room, the watch between the vases of flowers, its invari- 
able place during recitations). I was just going to lock this 
door and go to my parlor when said boy came with cher- 
ries — he could not stop longer — having perhaps a pint. I 
took a handful, regretting he could not stop as I wished 
some cherries picked to can, thus engaging the boy to come 
next day and pick, telling him he should have half, &c. ; he 
agreed to come, 'cause mother wanted cherries. After Mrs. 
Haston Avent away — reading, &c, till dark — later, quite dark, 
thinking to retire without light, as had been my common 



55 



practice since my "rap" — went down to get my watch 
and purse. My watch was not there, I said in beating 
baste, "I have not carried the watch up stairs." All search 
was vain. I stepped across the road to W. Howe, asked 
him to go to L. P. De Land, Deputy Sheriff, and have him 
go for the boy, as he alone had stolen my watch, &c. De 
Land replied, if the boy had it he would have it in the 
morning. He would see me and the boy in the morning. 

The morning was nearing noon. De Land did not come ; 
I started for him. On reaching his house, Squire Barnes 
was up in the cherry tree ; De Land is from home ; Barnes 
saying to me he was sorry for my loss, and he thought my 
labor on the Bacheller boy would not amount to anything. It 
would not be possible to get him into the high school; I re- 
plied he will get in if we live, &o. Mr. De Land at this 
time appears and we go to McCarty ; no one in the house ; 
he mates search in vain. De Land takes me home. Mrs. 
McCarty. whom I knew not, was there intoxicated for 
cherries. I asked why her boy did not come. " Oh he was 
sick unto death from eating my cherries, and he was in bed 
now." Much to the amusement of De Land and to my hor- 
or, for my watch was stolen. De Land takes me one side 
and says, "Get her into the house, it being about 6 p.m., 
and I will see him at home, as the father will bo there." I did 
as the sheriff said; said sheriff found the father and son. He 
presented the question to the boy pleasantly, the boy pleas- 
antly answering all questions, also saying there were four or 
five other boys on the tree and arouDd it. He bad not taken 
the watch, his father crying (said man is always on the 
grin), saying he told his wife if she sent him to Mrs. Hill's 
for cherries she'd get him into a fuss and told her not to 
send him at all. De Land soon returned, telling me "I had 
got to fix on some other boy, Johnny saying there were four 
or five about." 

I replied, " John McCarty has stolen that watch and no 
other boy !" " Well, I guess you are mistaken, I did my best 
to find him guilty, and I could not find the first look of guilt." 
" That boy has stole and outwitted you." Well, my advice to 
you is, if you ever have another not to go off and leave it on 



56 

the table; you admit you were careless." "No, sir, it lias 
thus been left hundreds of times." " The last, once too 
many." " I will see what I can do." After a sleepless night 
(making two of them), I rose early, not too early, for Mrs. 
McCarty was at my door waiting, saying " she fult so bad 
to think I should send De Land to her house, and accuse 
her boy of stealing my watch." "Mrs. McCarty, your boy 
has my watch, and you know it ; I have risen thus early to 
go to Worcester to see Judge Williams, etc. You will be 
held with your son for my watch, etc. Your boy is young, 
and perhaps did not realize what a theft he was perpetrat- 
ing." " He would not steal your watch, he loves you so," 
and she laid the kisses thick and fast on my hands. "Mrs. 
McCarty, I respect Father Cronin very highly, and I will 
let him deal with your boy, and nobody else, if you will 
go and carry that watch to him and tell him you are most 
crazed to think Johnny should take it. You hear what I 
say ; carry the watch to Father Cronin before ten o'clock — 
it shall be hushed up," etc. " Why, I look so to go to the 
priest ; I could not get round at that time." " Oh, yes, go 
right along." (I think the watch was in her bosom then.) 
" Mr. Cronin will do just the right thing about it. There is 
not a man in North Brookfield worthier of respect and 
esteem than Rev. Mr. Cronin, School Committee," etc. " I 
know you mean what you say, and I will go and carry it to 
him right off." Filling her hands with goodies she started 
blessing me fully equal to an " evangelist." 

Morning duties through, my joy made time fly, and ere I 
was aware it was ten. Now for my mail, and a call on 

Deputy D , and find his opinions, and what is best to do, 

etc. You see I was just teeming with joy. I must play the 
theatre. I will dress my feet in new gaiters, which will colic 
my bunions, and there'll be agony unfeigned in my face. 
Off I started. Deputy D. was athis office, and 33. F. De Land 
and Henry De Land, all three in audience. "I came in, 
Sheriff, to see what was best to do about Johnny." " I shall 
not do anything about him, he has not stolen that w r atch no 
more than I have." " And, sir, I am just as positive he has." 
The brothers rather arguing on my side, etc., thus causing 



57 

the Sheriff to advise me " to go to Jenks, and if he would 
make out a warrant, I'll go for him." "You have seen 
Jenks?" "Yes." " Oh, I am in such agony, I just want to 
screech." " Keep cool, keep cool." " I cannot, I am in per- 
fect misery; and I am going up to see Father Cronin and get 
his advice." " I should advise you not to go near him, of 
course you will do as you please." "Yes, I shall compass 
heaven and earth if that watch is not forthcoming. Good 
morning." 

At the priest's, Father Cronin, seeing me coming, meets 
me at the front door-step, with coat in hand, saying, "I was 
just going to come down and see you, and bring what there 
is left of your watch." Seating me in their parlor, he re- 
turned, bringing my once watch, all torn to pieces. My 
agony was then something beside my feet. He says : " It shall 
be replaced in value equal to your loss," &c. " Oh, Father 
Cronin, why is it everything connected with me is tortured — 
thus torturing me in every devisable manner." " ' Those the 
Lord loveth He chasteneth." " I want longer breves between 
" chastenings.' " Turning round, he soon appears : " I will 
see the boy ; his mother will send him to me this p. M. * * 
I will take the watch and show it, and then you will take it 

and see if it can be fixed." " Yes." I called on Sheriff D 

and showed what was left of the watch, both brothers being 
present. Mrs. McCarty came to my house in the afternoon, 
when we effected a settlement. Mrs. McCarty paying $40, 
giving her note for $18, payable on or before the 1st of Sep- 
tember, 1875, and what remains of the watch is now to be 
kept with dead baby's clothes. 

Next day after settlement she came, saying "W. H.," &c, 
"has told her to go and get that watch ; she will be arrest- 
ing } T our boy anytime she can show that torn uy watch, and 

if you had not been a d n fool she never would have 

found it, and the whole town was glad she had lost it. Go, 
get that watch from the mean thing." Thus she became 
furious as a madman, set on solely by drunken, low Yankees. 
Thus she raved for a time. A few Sabbaths after I was 
in the graveyard, and Foster and Jenks met me, both 
'ving a leering look at my chaiu, as if saying, "She 



58 

has the watch on." I had my locket on. Report had it 
that Foster, constable, had stated he would rather give $100 
than have me find it, and Con. Bliss said I had not lost my 
watch. Bothwell joined the young insurrection against me. 

In due time I, with Con. Hunter, called at Mrs. McCarty's, 
the little girl admitting us in an entry very small. Mrs. Mc- 
Carty, with bread knife in hand, flourishing it, locked the 
door, scaring Hunter as pale as death. I said, " Timmy, 
take that knife from your mother or I shall." He did 
so. I told her what I came for. " She never would pay me 
a cent ; it was a lie I had told, saying her boy had stolen 
my watch ; every body knows you are a liar, and mean." 
Timmy let us out, getting the key away from his frenzied 
mother by a ruse. The constable saw me home, and said he 
never was so frightened in his life. I was in fear, but kept 
my presence of mind until I was out. I was so weak I could 
hardly stand. That drunken woman went calling same even- 
ing for Foster to arrest me for disturbing the peace, and re- 
port had it I was arrested by said Foster;, who was in glee over 
her, charging her nevt r to pay another cent on the watch, 
and the $-10 is all I have received from her, and not a word 
from Hunter or myself to cause the above report. I have ap- 
plied to Deacon Montague of the " big shop " firm to try and 
make said parties pay the remainder. Montague : "I think 
you and I had better let the law have its course." C. E. Jenks 
is going to have me taken for compounding a felony. Header, 
I do not propose to apply to the law for justice, and expect 
to get any through such agents. Neither shall I let them or 
any one be getting from me (after losing my watch) what- 
ever they desire to strip me of, because I spot the sinner. 

" Charles Duncan had a clerk who abstracted $1,200 from 
his store drawer, and he had it refunded with interest. Said 
money had been banked as fast as drawn," &c. 

No compounding felony in that case. That " compound" 
belongs to Mrs. Hill in getting the ruined watch, if she can. 

Three days gone. Willie B. is in recitation, and we know 
when the hour is gone by the town clock striking. 

I gave him twenty-eight lessons. He entered the high- 
school ; Mr. Clay, teacher, saying, " among the first examin- 



59 

ations he was the poorest of any scholar examined in the 
school, and now he enters bearing the best examination of 
any scholar." 

Two young misses entered through my instruction not- 
withstanding the mob's efforts to keep some vile contumely 
of their own inheritance going round. 

" The more eminently virtue shines, the more it is exposed 
to persecution." 

North Beookfield Town Meeting, March 1st, 18 7 6. 

T. C. Bates now cautions his " dupes " as follows : " The 
great question to-day with the voters and tax-payers is, with 
how small an amount of money can the town meet its obliga- 
tions the coming year?" Our rate of taxation for 1875 was 
$19.25 on $1,000, and the money raised by the town was as 
follows : 

Schools $7,000 

Support of poor 1,500 

Highways, bridges and sidewalks 4,000 

Interest on town debt 1,000 

Contingent expenses , 3,000 

New hearse 1,000 

Memorial day 100 

Railroad 9,000 

Interest on railroad debt 2,500 

$33,100 

Amount of State tax 2,820 

Amount of County tax 2,317 

Overlayings 840 

$38,077 
Total valuation of town, $1,845,675. 
Rate of tax on $1,000, $19.25. 

"Now, the question is, how much of this amount can we 
do without in 1876 ? Can our schools be maintained with 
any less sum ? It is thought $500 may be deducted from the 
appropriation of last year, and our schools fully kept up to 
their present high degree of excellence. And there should 



60 

be $1,500 less on the highways and sidewalks. The payment 
of $9,U00 of the railroad debt must be provided for, and 
about $5,000 interest on the balance, making $14,000 to ap- 
propriate for maturing railroad obligations. 

Now, if our town officers will give their services for a few 
years, or for one year, that would help us out very much ; 
but if they cannot, or rather will not, they really should be 
willing to work as cheap as some officers in neighboring 
towns. But they can all afford to donate their service for 
one year, at least, especially if the present officers are re- 
elected to-day, and every advocate or friend of the railroad 
enterprise should work earnestly to reduce all expenses in 
our town affairs. A very few of our citizens, and the most 
conspicuous of the few advocates (and having no family to 
receive the benefits of more school room) are very desirous 
of adding another burden of four or five thousand for another 
school house in the center. Now, we can make our present 
accommodations suffice for a few years more, and this can 
be easily done if parents will not be so anxious to get their 
children out of their way and under the teacher's care as 
soon as they can walk alone and find the school-house. 

Sketch or two of Town Investigations at this March 

Meeting day, 1876. 

Bates comes forth a saviour for the interest of the 
town. Therefore a general look over the town proceed- 
ings of many years of G. C. Lincoln, merchant, treasury- 
ship. His bonds have never been legally sworn, <fec, some 
bondsmen not knowing they were held as bondsmen, show- 
ing up the town had never received, according to reports, 
any interest on money during the eight years, more or less, 
of said Lincoln's service, etc., as town treasurer. G. (3. L. 
said there had never been any to put at interest. True, 
of course. And thus bringing about Bates' prearranged 
plan. That as fast as money of such an amouut should 
be in hand, it be deposited in some bank, that interest 
should be accruing for the benefit of the town (instead of 
treasurer). Therefore, a new town treasurer was elected to 
office, bondsmen all sworn publicly, and that car just started 
for the first time right. Next — 



61 

S. Bothwell, Collector and Treasurer of Taxes, North B. 

His bondsmen, too, had never been legally sworn, &c. 

More than all that, Bothwell had been collecting interest 
from the poor " clod-hoppers " on their great sacrifice tax 
for four years, more or less, amounting to, it must be, hun-r 
dreds cf dollars, and not one cent ever went into the treasury. 
S. Bothwell rose looking lanker than you could imagino any 
one, except Uriah Heep, and said " he was going to pay it, 
and had always intended to, every cent." Of course that 
was all right. Header, he had had beside $300 or $350 per 
year for collecting said taxes. These being the two worst 
leaks in the town purse, the rest will not be mentioned. 

April 10th, 1876.— The directors of the North Brookfield 
Railroad Company reported. The present board of directors 
was chosen at a meeting July 3d, 1875, in selectmen's room, 
and there have been stockholders' meetings twice since, 
convened by request of the directors, November 11th, 1875, 
to authorize the directors to lease our railroad when done to 
the B. & A. R. B. Co. ; and on February 7th, 1876, to ratify 
and adopt a code of by-laws for the company directors — 
Bonum Nye, Freeman Walker, Alden Bacheller, Liberty 
Stone, John B. Dewing, Warren Tyler, W.H. Montague, Geo. 
C. Lincoln, Theodore C. Bates. 

I will give costs of building N. B. R. R. You will re- 
member it was to be built, fully equipped with rolling stock 
for $100,000. 

By amount paid on construction account $78,171 22 

" " " engineering 3,485 44 

" " incidentals 816 02 

" " " land damage account 15,390 47 

$97,863 15 

North Brookfield, Mass., 1875.— Total valuation, $1,845,- 
675.00. 

Total number of inhabitants as returned by State enume- 
rator, 3,748. 



62 

Town pays Boston & Albany Railroad, $2,000 per year for 
lease of rolling-stock, which is the simple interest of $33,- 
333£ ; said sum added to $90,000 amounts to $123,333.33^. 
$123,333.33^ divided by $1,845,675.00 = quotient, .0G§ cents. 
Therefore the town is actually taxed .06| per cent on a dol- 
lar to make a dozen men wealthy. 

When the town voted to raise 5 per cent, of her valuation, 
there were but forty-eight hours more, when the die would 
be cast, and then 3 per cent, of her valuation alone could be 
raised. A wayfaring man, though a fool, can see from the 
above that we are taxed 6| per cent. The town subscribed 
to become an associate before the said law was made statute. 
If I remember right it became statute the May following, 
January 29th, 1875. The defect in the above proceedings, 
if allowed to stand without investigation and prohibition, is 
demoralizing to the nation. 

Should a suit in equity be brought to recover taxes thus 
illegally paid, the result will affect the destinies of unborn 
numbers for weal or woe. 

Again, if courts will sustain towns in borrowing money 
without limitation and distinction, in direct violation of the 
statutes, what is to prevent every town in the government 
from becoming bankrupt ? Thus I argued, and could I be- 
lieve those railroad men enacted what is their mind, I should 
have been " squelched " from mortal view. After the town 
meeting I went into Bates' path. 

What meaneth it, $98,000 swallowed up and no rolling- 
stock ? Bates : " I have heard enough of your blab sticking 
round here ; you would be glad to have folks think you 
literary, your inch long pieces in the paper. There ain't a 
person in town but what hates the sight of you ! " " They 
don't hate the sight of my income and land that is taken 
and made a sinking fund to benefit the 'big shop 'and stores. 
Every time you or any one else rides in those cars over my 
land, I am contributing largely for their every ride," &c. 
"You a sinking fund? As though you had money ! The 
town has offered you ten times the worth of your land, but 
you will fight, and I will tell you now, when you get through 
your suit for damages, you won't have money enough left to 
buy the grub for your next meal." 



63 

April 28th, 187G. 

The County Commissioners, in session at North Brook- 
field, I suppose them to say to railroad directors : we could 
not have advised you better iu the crossings of these roads 
than you have done, and we are highly pleased with the cross- 
ings thereof, &c. But their ardor was cooled when I ap- 
peared, presenting a letter to Commissioner Brown, saying, 
"You will please to attend this day to the complaint within" 
(I have not the copy, it is in North Brookfield). Mr. Brown: 
"We may not have time." " I wish you to comply this day 
with my request," &c. I then passed on my way. Report 
has it Brown opened the letter, smilingly, passed it to F. 
Walker: "I can't read that." ' He took said letter, looked it 
over, passing it to Bates : " If you can read bad spelling and 
writing, try that letter — ha! ha!" Bates read aloud said 
letter without hesitation, to the great edification and joy of 
the bystanders, who said, "Mrs. Hill had him !" 

In said letter w T as a complaint of the road, in which the 
railroad had made a rise of seven feet — the north descent 
being fifty feet, the south eighty feet. Said commissioners 
on the 2d of December, 1875, notified the town to grade 
said filling 100 feet north and 150 south. Said commission- 
ers proceeded to view the same. I was there. The com- 
missioners asked if any one could tell them the grade ordered 
by them? December. Dumb silence. Nye, Walker, Bates, 
&c. I have seen intended ignorance before. But I will in- 
form you. Some of the selectmen and railroad directors 
have told me the road was complete, and nothing more to 
be done, &c. And your orders are upon the court records 
100 feet north and 150 south. Mr. Bigelow says to the 
directors, "you make that grade at once." Oh, those coun- 
tenances! I see them now as then. 

Within a month the Boston & Albany Railway were 
dumping sand upon said filling, leaving it again 80 and 120 
feet. I dispatched another letter to said directors, de- 
manding completion, as legally ordered. 

McKay contracted and finished out said work. In doing 
the same they stole all the stones that lay in heaps upon my 
own land, placed there by my hired men when the railroad 



64 

was building; Nye telling said men to pile some upon the 
"wall. Readers, please notice the trespass and stealing. 

The trespass of rocks being placed upon my mowing by 
Carter, who made the first grade ; said overseer being the 
only one that was a complete tool for the directors — McKay 
bringing up the rear. Said Carter, men and horses, were 
kept by Mr. Tyler a length of time ; said Tyler losing $'260 
by them. 

The commissioners compelled the directors to make my 
lower crossing as petitioned, but in the first mowing, it is not 
granted. 

April 1st, 1876. — Bates has in the North Brookfield Journal, 
viz., "The railroad company is virtually the towu. It is a 
question in which all our people take a deep interest, and 
are firmly united in the sentiment that the awards are all 
sufficient, and every effort to make the compensation larger 
should be contested to the last degree. But it is hoped 
these dissatisfied claimants do not want a legal contest for 
the benefit of lawyers and the disadvantage of their own 
neighbor friends. But if it must come, the almost unani- 
mous feeling of our citizens is, that it must be opposed to 
the furthest extent." 

April 28th, 1876. 
I wrote to the directors to grant me a hearing before three 
of their body, specifying them to see if there could be 
brought about a railroad settlement. Their reply to me 
was : " When the other four are settled, then we will try 
you." — Selah. 

May 1st, 1876. 

To our patriotic, public spirited citizen, Charles Kittridge, 
belongs the honor of having first brought his unsettled claim 
for land damages, before the courts. Since the last issue of 
the Journal, the officers of the Railroad Company have 
been summoned to appear at Fitchburg, at the June Term 
of court. 

Mr. Kittridge's case against the N. B. R. R. Co. is No. 
1052 on the docket, and, of this number, over 850 have 



05 

t 

not got even called, and the best authority obtainable says 
it cannot bo reached in much less than two years, and then 
it may take two years more to decide whether Mr. Kitt- 
ridge's wood lot is worth $150 per acre, as we have offered 
him, or only about $40, as good judges of honest men have 
appraised it. We are sorry Mr. .K. is so determined to 
throw his money into the basket he has selected, and cause 
the railroad officers so much trouble and annoyance, though 
the company may not have to pay him so much by a hun- 
dred dollars, yet the court expenses will consume it, and 
that was their opinion when the liberal offer of $150 was 
made him. If this money at interest will not amount to more 
by the time this case is settled than he will get after paying 
his lawyer's fees, costs, and all other expenses attending the 
controversy, we are very much mistaken, and our citizens 
generally will feel as though our respected public benefactor 
should have some slight token of thei* appreciation and re- 
spect for his noble generosity, and probably the hat will be 
passed around to get the money to pay his bills after he has 
been beaten in the courts. At any rate, the respect they 
will always have for him will be of great value to such sen- 
sitive, appreciative persons as both Mr. and Mrs. K. have 
shown themselves to be. Have we any more such people in 
our town ? Time will tell. 

May 27th, 1876. 

Burglars are still on the scout in North Brookfield. They 
have made several attempts to enter residences within the 
past few weeks. They tried again, about one o'clock, at 
Mrs. E. R. Hill's residence. Their noise awoke her, and her 
alarm given to the neighbors drove them away. Liberty 
Stone had evidence of their trail upon his premises the 
same night. D. Whiting, A. Bacheller, Blood, and DeLand 
went to Mrs. Hill's aid. 

Before forty-eight hours were gone a vile report was 
heralded to me, as my sayings in my fright. Where did 
you hear the loathsome, obscene —oh, horror ! oh, my God, 
wh} T dost thou not cause their tongues to cleave to the roof 
of their vile mouths ? " They said you was as crazy as a 



GG 

bed bug." "Toll me at once, who is bearing that vile- 
ness to be bandied through that 'big shop'?" "Wilder 
Dean, Eddie Bacheller, both were telling of it." My hat was 
on in}- head, quickly. " Keep cool, aud give them what will 
live and be to their benefit." I was soon in said market, 
saying, "Bacheller, a vile slang is being reported, and you 
with Mr. Dean are said to be reporters; did you coin what 

you told in presence of Mr. ?" " No, I didn't ; I have 

heardmore than forty tell of it." " Please name one." ." I can't; 
there was more than twenty last evening ; I did not notice — 
it was. the general laugh." " Will you please tell me one in this 
market last everiing that did not join the rabble." "I shall 
not say :i lathing more." W. Dean's answer same. " You both 
are legally held as coiners of this vile report, verifying the 
adage, ' out of the abundance of the heart the mouth 
speaketh ;' I have found who the author of this vile talk is, 
and I leave you with disgust and contempt." 

Reader, that is a perfect representation of the style of 
eight-tenths of the citizens of North Brookfield, Massa- 
chusetts, the modern population. 

Patrick Kellogg's residence had the same kind of a call at 
the bed-room window, both husband and wife seeing and 
recognizing the man; as report has it, Bothwell, and select- 
man, and the family think it best to hush it up. So much 
for statutes and officers, to mete out justice to ivliomsoever 
they iv ill. 

As I was returning home I thought it best to tell Mr. A. 
Bacheller what came from said market, and the authors, when 
weeping, Bates tunes up, as he comes into the store, " Miss 
Hill, you got ready to take the commissioner's award." This 
is your time to taunt also. I left the store without purchase. 
I will here state I have twice written A. H. Bacheller & Co., 
of the " big shop," offering to sell him all the land cut off 
below the north side of the railroad, giving them the com- 
missioner's award, &c. Not one word ; so much for that, 
and my effort in the same way to other interested parties 
has received the same attention. The award rendered is a 
song composed with the injury and income the railroad has 
taken for their special benefit. 



67 

My land has been set on fire four times by the engine, 
burning once all over north of railroad bed. Three times I 
was notified, and with help extinguished it. 

I was told by the engineer before the railroad was com- 
plete, after the first burning (I was at Worcester at this 
time of the fire), " it would bo impossible to have a building 
upon my two acre lot, owing to the great power required to 
come up and around the curve." My loss is great. My 
cherished plans are clashed to the ground. My best part of 
my livelihood taken for a sinking fund for " big shop," a few 
stores, and, as report has it, free-ride passengers. 

I have repeatedly asked them to remove posts, &c, upon 
their five roads, taken as they are set irregular, acknowl- 
edged by one of the best engineers from a city. " They 
shall do nothing about it." Said engineer proving, in his 
survey, more land in railroad "bed than the profile affirms. 
I said to the engineer, "How shall I remove those posts — the 
directors will never have it done ?" " I should take an axe 
and knock them over." 

Reader, I will commence again, July, 1870. As I have 
told you, of owning by heirship, seven and a half acres 
of land, which the North BrookfiVd Railroad ruins in 
many ways, the income of which has been stated here- 
tofore, selling my grass standing, etc., this July, not an 
offer (bear in mind reader, the railroad ring are vigor- 
ously running their underground railroad to shut off my 
income, and thus to have an argument which will soon be 
related). I bestirred myself to sell my crop of grass to A. B. 
C without avail; finally hearing that John Sherman, whose 
wife is second cousin of mine, and a very weak minded lady, 
had moved into the village in absolute need of assistance, 
being a coal truck driver, and formerly living with his bachelor 
brother-in-law (Peniman Tyler, great singing teacher), whom 
report says Sherman had run through " Penn's " property, 
and his name held also for $1,000. Mr. Daniel Whiting 
advised me to get Sherman to cut my grass, on conditions, 
etc. Next morning I started for Cork to find John ; before 
I reached that isle, I met John Sherman, and I appealed 
to him for a trade, etc. " Oh, I am tired to death of hay* 



63 

ing — I have all I can do, and more too. You could not 
induce mo to cut it, if you'd give me the whole crop." 

Before I reached my home, I met Captain D. W. Lane, 
be saving if I did not succeed in selling my grass — he would, 
after his haying, see it was harvested, &c. ; oh, this pulling 
up-hill, all done by that old railroad ; my two-acre mowing 
was a highway for six months. I shall not have half crop 
anyhow ; thus I soliloquized. Anecdote — "A certain gentle- 
man being asked, why it was he talked so much to himself." 
" For two reasons, sir : First, I like to talk to a sensible 
person ; Second, I like to hear a sensible person talk. 
Now, bide your time." 26th July, in comes neighbor : " Well, 
John Sherman has concluded to cut, or bought your grass." 
" I hud not heard so ; did you hear who made the trade?" 
&c. " I heard Belding sav so : he wanted to sell Sherman 
some hay to pay him for cutting his, as he had to feed his 
ho.ses without being asked at noon ; Sherman boldly pitch- 
ing in his cart for their night, want, &c. Sherman hain't 
a forkfull of anything for those two horses ; one is Penn's 
and the other Ben. Dean's." " I'll just start for that driver, 
and see if I can't rescue him from further robbery more, 
thus accomplishing a twofold object, helping myself and 
cousin John S., too." At John Sherman's door, he shouts, 
" Come in, Mrs. Hill." "Please excuse me for this untimely 
call. I have just been told you had bought my grass, ha, 
ha! haven't you got your haying done , nor haven't you 
bought it ; ha, ha !" " I'll tell you, Mis. Hill, I'll be down 
to-morrow morning, and buy your grass. Less trade now." 
" You may cut it at the halfs, or I will sell it standing 
$12^ per ton." "I will give you 812^ per ton, and pay in 
thirty days." Agreed. " Mr. Sherman, I want two tons of 
coal put into my house and barn the earliest time possible; 
can you deliver as before, for me?" " Yes ; and will put it 
in within thirty days, and the balance as before." "Agreed." 
That man cut two mowings, and housed in the next two days, 
amounting to $17.62, what had been sold standing, in 1871, 
for $85, to John Rusk. 

I informed G. H. DeBevoise of Sherman's proceedings, 
etc. Said DeBevoise told me he would see said gentleman, 



69 

that if I would not enforce the law be would bring about 
payment. Sherman is a church member in regular standing. 

Mr. DeBevoise did advise him to pay me as report has it. 
Not one cent have I received yet. I have also appealed to 
Deacon Haskill, Deacon Thurston, Deacon Porter and Dea- 
con Montague, said deacons officiating under G. H. DeBe- 
voise, Lewis Whiting, Walter Howe, members. 

Deacons Porter and Montague, (very wealthy) both being 
brothers-in-law to Sherman by marriage, say nothing of that 
" double distilled brotherhood." They, hearing my com- 
plaint, said : "We will investigate, etc." Due time I asked 
them the result of their investigation. Deacon Thurston said : 
" He has offered to pay you," etc. He has used those words 
and nothing more, gentlemen. I caused Esquire Barnes to 
write to him to meet Mrs. Hill at his office such an evening 
(waiting for Sherman to do his day's work and have supper) to 
settle a claim for hay, etc., and to bring the bills of the same. 
After waiting nearer two hours than one he came, saying he 
would pay for the hay he had, but he should not cut my garden 
nor draw my coal. " Very well, sir, I will take the money." 
Barnes : "Sherman, give me the weight bills." Sherman opens 
them with rapidity, and throws them on the table. "There 
you have 'm." Barnes begins figuring ; before he could 
complete tho same, Sherman says : " Barnes, here 
is $20," (I looking and noticing every move — he had 
folded a bill in his hand, clinching it tight — Barnes nor 
I had no means of knowing what it was but Sher- 
man's word,) adding, you take pay. Barnes : " No, we will 
square it all up in a minute." Sherman starts for the door, 
saying : " Barnes, I'll be in to-morrow and see you." "Mr. 
Sherman, I wish this settled to-night, I cannot come here to- 
morrow. If you have a $20 bill, show it. You have not, 
nor don't intend to pay one cent." He fiendishly grins and 
says : " Barnes, I'll see you to-morrow." 

" Mrs. Hill, I think he will come in." Sherman was down 
stairs by the time the above was uttered. "Mr. Barnes, did 
you see anything to make you know Sherman had $20?" 
Barnes : " No, not at all." When Sherman landed at the foot 
of the stairs he volunteers as follows : " I've just offered Miss 



70 

Hill $20, to pay for her hay, and she won't take it. "When I 
offer it again you let me know." Into Chas. Duncan's store, 
and repeats the same, at Tim. Clark's and W. Dean's and 
Sargent's fish market. Next morning he calls on Barnes and 
demands the weigh-bilis; and Barnes gives them up, saying 
he wasn't read} 7 to pay, and more than that he should not 
pay Miss Hill till he got ready. In p. M. I called on 
Barnes, and he stated the above, adding, sometime in the 
course of time, "Sherman is such a hard ticket you may get 
a chance to collect the same." Reader, that is all the kind 
of offer from Sherman I have had. But Sherman received 
from me kindly aid while getting said hay, besides his horses 
living upon it both days. The stolen hay lasted Sherman 
till the law, enforced by others, took the horses out of his 
barn, and said hay not quite consumed he boarded a French- 
man's horse to finish the same. And the church members 
had their coal drawn $1 per ton, by Sherman, and other 
servile labor proportionately cheaper, saving said men 
dollars, more or' less, by Sherman having my timely hay. 

Sherman, report has it, is often intoxicated, though he has 
signed the pledge recently — a fearful specimen of untruth- 
fulness, yet a member in regular standing in DeBcvoise's 
church. I just said to DeBevoise, about three months since, 
one Thursday, before communion, " I would like to have you 
remind Sherman, as he is, with you, about to commemorate 
the dying love of Christ, while his mind may be in a tender 
state, Mrs. Hill (widow) needs the pay for her hay very 
much." DeBevoise: " Yes, 'em." 

Headers keep tally of names. 

In August I attended the Teachers' County Institute 
at Milbrev, Mass. North Brookfield was well represented, 
it being the County Institution. I think I am the only one 
belonging to National, American and State Teachers' 
Institutes in N. Brookfield. 

I went to the Centennial alone in November, 1876. On 
reaching New York I crossed over to Brooklyn, to Bev. Henry 
"W. Beecher's, hoping thus suddenly (without cards or pre- 
vious letters) to find Mrs. Catherine Beecher, but doomed to 
disappointment, seeing only Mrs. H. W. Beecher ; Miss 



- 71 

Beeclier absent and in very poor health. Returning at once to 
New York, Broadway, calling at American Institute, of which 
I have been a member, to get my certificates and photograph. 
And in the same block, in Browne's Phonographic College, I 
learned and paid for two lessons in phonography, Mrs. 
Browne saying I had made more proficiency than many stu- 
dents in college in three months. Seeing right there, were 
Fowler and Wells, that old acquaintance Fowler examining 
my head in public, in North Brookfield, Mass., in 1847. Said 
gentleman giving me a wonderful cranium, of course gave 
me audacity to renew acqaintauce, and see what he thought 
thirty years had added to the above capacity ; I met only 
Wells, and talked with him an hour or more. I ought to 
have said while in Browne's college, Mrs. Browne invited mo 
to call with her at Dr. Holton's genealogical compiler, where 
we dined about 7 p.m. I think it was the Astor House, Mr. 
and Mrs. Browne introduced me, paying my bill, in advance 
for me. The house was on the European plan. Header, 
have patience with me about names. Remember my guide 
books are at my cottage home. The above mentioned places 
I hope to call at ere I leave this city, notwithstanding my 
outside apparel is poor indeed. But I guess they will give 
me a hearing. Now off for the Centennial ; at the mammoth 
depot, at the right office, I presented my ticket. " The Bound 
Brook train has just gone (not ten minutes) ; you will have to 
wait about two hours, &e. ; go to that further seat" (point- 
ing to the last door). I went and stayed some long fa'we before 
another passenger came for said train, but just before start- 
ing hundreds packed there. When the gate opened I was 
first, and the first to show my ticket to the officer stationed. 
He looked it over, " Madam, you're all right, go to the last 
car on this second track." I demurred. " We begin to fill up 
at further end," (pointing). I did just as I was told. The 
car none too good for four-footed beasts. Nevertheless, it 
was soon packed, not an extra seat for the many more 
searching. 

All aboard — we are off. In due time conductor takes my 
ticket. "You are on the wrong train, madam ; yon must pay 
me so and so." " That I shall not do, sir. I have been waiting 



72 

two hours for this train. I was told at the ticket office to 
take such a seat at such a gate, which I did ; not another 
individual there at the time. When the gate opened, I was 
first to give my ticket to the officer in charge there, and he 
told me I was all right, and directed me to this very car I am 
in, sir," " That's so," came from three or four I was next to. 

Conductor : " That's nothing to me ; I must have that 
fare, so and so, or you must get off the train." 

" I shall not pay you one cent, sir. You see here, sir ; my 
ticket, bought at North Brookfield, Mass., to Philadelphia 
and return. And, sir, I am in this car by officers directing 
the traveler. You can stop the train and put me off, the re- 
sult of which will be a legal investigation of the same." 

Conductor : " Madam, I'll look this up." On he goes. 

Reader, there was no other one in this car to be ousted. I 
began thinking aloud — an old habit. That officer thought 
me a countrywoman. Now for some extra change, arranged lor 
before ; but the " sharks " got hold of the wrong "greenhorn" 
this time. A general snicker, and louder, roused me to know 
I had some audience. At the same time a gentleman coming 
to me said, " Madam, they got hold of just the right one this 
time. Permit me to render you a little assistance at this 
time." "Thanks — please investigate with the conductor." In 
due time the said gentleman returns with the conductor, bow- 
ing and taking his seat. Conductor said, " You can stop at 
Newark. Wait there till four o'clock. I will see you are sent 
to the depot for the Bound Brook train," &c. " Thanks — what 
time shall I reach Philadelphia?" Such a time in the eve- 
ning ! The train stops. That gentleman (minister) rose, took 
mv linen bag, <fcc, with conductor, and helped me off the train 
— conductor ordering the hackman to convey this lady at once 
to such a depot for Bound Brook train. Minister (for he 
looked and acted just like one called of God), shaking hands, 
said, " I wish you success and much pleasure the rest of your 
journey." 

Conductor. " I the same." And they are off. 

Here, in Newark, I am stopped, not by my carelessness, 
but by man's greed to get the dollar without giving an 
equivalent. But I will see and learn from every crook and 



73 

corner round about. I'll get so much into my head, that 
land sharks can't get hold of. On the train, and I am 
seated with a stately, richly and well designed dressed lady, 
whose white hair and general look spoke sixty years and 
more. We readily engaged in conversation, and the unfold- 
ing brought out her special troubles, her rich grounds and 
fruits corporations had taken to build such, and such men 
in business, so, and so ruining the looks of her inherited 
residence, and the one place she had lived in previous to her 
husband's death taking thousands and rendering for the same 
a nominal sum. " I could not bear to stay there. I sold out, 
but have ever been sorry I did sell my home. You and I 
are too far advanced in life to sell out and rove like these pil- 
grims, who stay a year or few months here, and then off. And 
too many seek such a life to rob their living from the honest 
industries of others." As she is about to leave the train — 
" You and I have met, as it were, strangers in a bond of 
sympathy, and as I am the eldest let me say to you, from 
my experience, keep your home unless driven out by fiends, 
with which the world so abounds." A shake. Gone. 

Another lady coming to me, who came to the depot at 
Newark, and had heard the conversation more or less, ad- 
vised me to get off at next station with her, and there await 
(she would wait with me, as her home was there) till I could 
take a train for Bound Brook. And she would advise me to 
stay over night there and rest, if I was near as weary as I 
looked. The hotel at Bound Brook was just across the 
street from depot. A nice house, reasonable prices, and of 
the best in every way for your need. Soon I am on the train, 
in the seat in front of me is a little boy, four years of age, 
bright and beautiful. We made quick acquaintance, and I 
soon had several kisses from his sweet cheeks. His aunty 
with him says he is a great pet every where, and living in a 
hotel gives him a great deal of presense for his age. 
I am directed to such a hotel. It is this boy's father's. 
Boy — " You going home with me '?" The father comes from 
smoking car. Thus strangers form acquaintance. My bed, 
my food was the very best, and more by far than that was 
the parlor hospitality and sociability, that was so much in 



74 

the example of the life our Saviour gave us, the fruits thereof 
I was the recipient. I regret I cannot give the name. 
It was a democratic house, and a rallying open air meeting 
was held in front of said hotel, every word of which 
I could hear iu my room. Their truths uttered, they helped 
to lull me to sleep. Next morning, about 8 o'clock, I was on 
right train for Centennial grounds reaching there about noon, 
coach conveying me to Atlas hotel where I had a room till I 
left. Friday about 7 A. M. I commenced explorations, be- 
fore an hour had gone after my arrival upon said grounds, 
and sped my way this way and that, unconscious of people 
but things. How soon dark ! I had not thought, how shall 
I get back to the Atlas hotel again ? First, inquiry — 
" such a hack, such a way," &c. I was directed as the best 
way into a street off the grounds (just tho worst way), and 
by indefatigable perseveranco ran on. At last those long 
dining halls came in sight. My thinking out loud — that's 
the Atlas hotel kitchens. " Are you, lady, wishing to go 
there ?" So much for thinking out loud. " Yes." " We 
are going there — wo have stopped there the past week." 
The parties speaking were two women hanging on one man. 
Very suspicious looking to me. Soon in the great reception 
room, and clusters of mortals were round the tables in every 
direction. As I aimed to go direct for my linen bag, <fcc, 
" Do stop here a moment, lady, you look as though you 
could not get up stairs without help," etc. "lam very weary, 
(the man and other lady going in different directions — from 
the moment that woman spoke to mo I knew they were pick- 
pockets, as if it were spoken from heaven), but fully compe- 
tent to do all I have to do." Lady: "You here alone?" 
" Yes." " That lady and her husband that have gone to 
supper — " " They have supper in different directions." A 
cooler. " I was going to say, I room alone next to theirs, 
and I would like to have you room with me. We both show 
we have no abundance of money." " My room is engaged and 
paid for." "Pray what number is it?" "None of your business!" 
I "went to the baggage office corner. I pointed out the lady 
to a gentleman, telling him her conversation. Says porter, 
" I think she is the very one last week we suspected or allud- 



75 

ed to — go, look, Joe." A waiter, going up stairs to ray room 
with my bag, &c, after bringing me refreshment, informed 
me a man had just found his watch was stolen. "Am I secure 
in this horse stall ?" Laughing. " Yes." 

My rest was poor ; my gas-light revealing the bedbugs 
around the hole of the gas-pipe, in boards and ceiling. I 
finished a newspaper almost in killing them as they entered, 
with their gore marking, by my handy designs, Palestine, so 
deftly plotted on the Centennial grounds. Next morning I 
was on the ground about the first, swiftly viewing in the main 
building; I came to the manger where the Saviour's horned 
ox was produced, and wise men of the East, &c, were to be 
seen. I lingered in reverie. A simple mind, beautiful in 
outward dress, spoke to me : " Do you suppose this is really 
the stable Christ was born in?" As I looked at her, this pas- 
sage came in my mind, " Answer a fool according to his 
folly," &c. " Oh, yes ; the mode of conveyance is such now-a- 
days we can transport anything, of whatever name, or nature," 
and passed on with disgust, that a young woman that 
could put so much dry goods about her, and be such an igno- 
rant fool — thus my proiound reverie was broken. The cruci- 
fixion next held me long ; and, reader, I seu that statuary 
this moment as plain as my pen and paper; and "My Im- 
prisonment in the Felon's Cell," by Both well, was so parallel, 
the thought of which makes the blood. rush to my cheeks as 
if to burst the skin. Another .frail voice says, "Have you 
seen what I call 'Niagara Falls?'" "No, what do you 
mean ?" " Oh, where all the engines are pouring water." 
That 'Niagara' was no more to be compared to that stu- 
pendous, awful grandeur, than so many squirt-guns. Nor 
Corlis' wheel was not so much of a sight to me as " Has- 
kell's last-factory wheel," seen in 1837. 

One more ecstacy : " Have you seen the ' Butter Image?' '' 
"Yes." " Was it wonderful ?"" " No ; all that is wonderful to 
me about it is the chemical principles with which it is sur- 
rounded." " Why, I think it the greatest of wonders." 

Header, my time was a dead loss while I was in file, going 
up and down that passage to see that image. I would not 
turn round in my shoes to look at it again. 



76 

On entering the art building, I will not pen any thoughts — 
that till in y soul to overflowing. After a time I moved a few 
yards to the right, where the Cain and Abel statuary stood. 
The little fellows, about two feet high, beautiful — so beautiful 
to the mother who loves little boj's — the left arm resting on 
each waist. Abel's countenance full of frank, loving spirit; 
had not so many been around I should have kissed Abel. 
Cain equally handsome, but close examined, there was an un- 
mistakable expression in the eye and lip — with his right arm 
drawn back, his little fist clinched tight, ready to hit the fatal 
rap. Thus Cain, hugged with his left arm, and ready to kiss 
his brother, while the right arm was executing his murderous 
design. That is just the treatment I have received from citi- 
zens in my native place. They have not murdered me, but 
done far worse. That building, and mostly every building 
upon the ground, was explored by my searching eye. And, 
reader, come and talk with me, and see how long I can talk 
of this, that and all things generally on the Centennial 
grounds, also to and from the passage from my own cottage 
home. 

On returning from the Centennial, there was, on the seat 
in front of me, a young man from 20 to 25 years old, whom 
the conductor found to be on the wrong train. The young 
man appeared to be honest and unaccustomed to travel. 
Some talk ensued, the conductor demanded his fare, and the 
young man handed him a five dollar bill to take it from. 
When the conductor gave back the change, I said to the 
young man, " that conductor would have drawn out leviathan 
with a hook, before he would that money from me." Some 
cautious advice I gave him, for I had seen new needs all the 
time of my absence. 

In the winter William Bacheller leaves the High School, 
and applies to me for instruction. In December 27th, 28th, 
and 29th, I attended State Teachers' Institute, Spring- 
field, (of which I am a member), having a week's vacation. 
Willie recited till April 1st, 1877, taking in that time eighty 
lessons, not losing a day or changing the hour except vaca- 
tion — Christmas week. In that time he mastered physi- 
ology, having 40 or 50 lessons ; writing compositions by 



77 

topics on each lesson. Commencing Greenleafs General 
Arithmetic at Percentage, completing the book. 

In Anderson's Ancient History, he repeated to fourteenth 
century, in Mediaeval, and through Single Entry in Fulton 
«fc Eastman's Book-keeping. 

Willie is thus enabled to be of great service to his father 
in business capacity, having been thoroughly and practic- 
ally drilled. And my eye will follow the boy now, eighteen 
years of age, till time is no more with us on earth. 

December 27th, 1876.— My fiftieth birthday I was at State 
Teachers' Institute at Springfield, reaching said place about 
noon on Whitney's train, Whitney taking my ticket just past 
Indian Orchard. Putting my purse in my overskirt pocket 
when we reached Springfield, as I rose to leave the car, tak- 
ing hold of said pocket going along, I stopped. My pocket- 
boolc is not in my pocket I Man : " You could not have dropped 
it, madam.") My pocket-book is here within three feet, 
raising my arm across the aisle. Man : " Let the passengers 
get out and you will find it, if dropped." "The passengers, sir, 
can wait till my pocket-book is forthcoming." (A smile pervaded 
the frail sex at my imperativeness.) The man was dressed 
like a gentleman. Man got down on all fours under the 
seat, and soon came forth ; " You did drop it, madam." That 
man had the inside seat with me in the car, a perfect 
stranger, and he had picked my pocket. My resolute decis- 
ion alone found my pocket-book. And there has been a 
continuation of the same disposition manifested in different 
ways toward me as if to filch me of my last dollar in my old 
age I 

April Term, 1877. — Mr. Kittredge's railroad case to be 
tried, the jury upon the ground ten minutes more or less, and 
have a jolly time the remaining time in the "big shop" here 
and there. The lawyers effect a settlement, and the "big 
shop " rings. Kittredge gets $.30 after paying costs, &c. 
Readers, I have been told the settlement was to be told to 
be, as the assessment. The railroad defendants— -fresh 
courage take in their success in that mode of settlement — 
demanded Mr. Tyler's railroad case to be tried this term 
The conduct of the jurymen on the Kittredge case — as report 



78 

has it, their expression and language over its great appraisal 
— was heralded over town, and round about, the other two 
would have the same fate. Mr. Tyler's case was not tried. 
Report has it (and true) said church directors and church 
advisors prayerfully entreated Mr. D. Whiting making further 
strides in offers made by special parties, without avail. 

Town meeting, April, 1877.— Time changed by new by- 
law from March to April ; and the proceedings in seven by 
nine room caucuses were many and contentious, as report 
had it. The railroad men were going to oust Dr. Tyler any- 
how, beginning these notable gatherings with the watchword 
" New officers, clean ticket," &c, &c. New board of select- 
men and assessors ; the caucuses were in such a wrangle. 
DeBevoise comes to the rescue by preaching the Sabbath 
previous to the above day, to the great disgust of many of 
his hearers. Condensed it is this : " Let well enough alone," 
in tone, &c, " you have got to do as T say." DeBevoise's 
spirit and the consequence of his preaching was manifest on 
Monday, and this same spirit of his in a more ferocious 
degree manifesting itself on a future Monday in this book 
named " The Bears" (not of Wall street,) but North Brook- 
field, Mass., after prayer — not by DeBevoise — began their 
work in good earnest. Chairman Bates — Now they are 
started with a rush, like as " aforetime." The readers can 
imagine said meeting, which was amusing as well as disgust- 
ing to me. Soon DeBevoise comes, with good deal of vim 
apparent ; seats near my side. I just bow ; no notice ! I 
will here say that I did not enter my railroad case until the 
December term of the court, 1876, waiting till within a few 
hours of time when the year would be ended, since the de- 
cision of the County Commissioner's award was announced 
on record at court, December 2d, 1875. Dnnng that year I 
assiduously made every effort to have my laud damage claim 
adjudicated, the defendants well understanding the amount 
that would be required to liquidate the same ; but not an 
offer but the commissioners, or rather their own assessment, 
always adding, " you will not have anything to show if you 
go to law." Some of the most rabid would say to me : " We 
shall keep you in the court till all you have got is spent; 
what lawyer will you employ then ?" &c. 



79 

Thus I have been goaded many times by church members 
move than by those not within " that vail." The first time 
I met DcBevoise after the railroad directors' notification of 
the above suit pending, he did not see me; other times he 
would evade me by circuiting ; in fact it is my best judgment 
he has not so much as bowed his head when unavoidably 
meeting me a dozen times since January, 1877, though meeting 
me fifty times more or less. It took me long, ere I could 
allege to him his weakness, so often promulgated by others, 
and when obliged too, I thus announced — DeBe. has catered 
to his surroundings till he is emasculated of common sense! 
The old board of selectmen was re-elected, and a new board 
of assessors — it was a warfaring day. The meeting was ad- 
journed one week to finish town business. Bates took it 
upon himself to have a new sexton to the town hall. On 
entering the hall, this second town meeting, by the bell rope 
stood Bates hugging John Hebard. (Reader, the reason of 
this last character being brought in is he figures in the cell 
during my incarceration there.) I stepped out to Duncan and 
Delvey. and told Delvey the above sight. Delvey replied, 
" Bates has got an axe to grind." Yes, and it's to prevent my 
coming to earn my daily papers. As one of Bates' expres- 
sions had been, " we must shut Miss Hill's wind all off." And 
thus every railroad man in town has plied his influence. 
At this meeting school-room was demanded, and Dr. Tyler 
said he had been looking at a pleasant large room, with reci- 
tation room, in Stone Block (said block was built with the 
railroad, thus aiding the builders from $500 to $1,000, in 
being furnished with stone from the Stoddard and King 
quarry to build up an immense fill for said building, grading 
the road, etc., improved the looks and prospects of dwelling- 
stands thousands of dollars) ; said room was rented for the 
purpose at once. DeBe. being one of the school committee 
though he had announced in every examination he should 
not remain on the committee, for reasons, etc., another year. 
DeBe. being a supply at that time through resignation of liis 
predecessor. At this town meeting somebody was like to be 
elected that had not been railroad, etc. DeBe. breaks right 
in and gets his name re-elected without one word of scruple 



80 

apparent. Thus DeBe. is school committee for '77. In 
the Post Office I met DeBe., and said to him,"Mr. DeBevoise 
I wish you to consider me an applicant to teach the school 
in Stone Block. You, sir, know well my qualifications," — De- 
Be. going from me while speaking — "you will thus inform the 
other committee." DeBe.: "Yes'm." The week had not 
ended before I was informed John Hebard was going to stop 
my coming into that hall, he be d — d if lie would seat mo 
(well knowing there would never be a chance). I'll kick up 
something that will land her to the bottom of the stairs." I 
was in the hall a few times while he was janitor, but avail- 
ing myself of other escort. Said Hebard, from truthful re- 
ports, is not trustworthy, and thus held by honorable citizens. 
In due time De B. resigns, and is succeeded by the Rev. 
Mr. Avann, (Methodist). See the card play. 

June 25th, 1877. — Not one offer to purchase my grass. 
The prospects of a medium crop appeared good, Therefore 
Patrick O'Brien and Robert Morse were hired by me to 
harvest, &c, my grass. Mrs. "Wm. H. Ayres, in whose em- 
ploy is Robert Morse (colored), rented me her large heavy 
span of horses, mowing machine, cart, and tools generally, 
my haying going on with rapidity. I will say here, father 
used to cut this two-acre lot first, my grass being early ; 
therefore if the hay was to be made under rny supervision, it 
must be in season for so doing ; I after cut over a ton of 
first quality of rowen. 

I also employed Thomas Ashby and his son Fred, to take 
up half of scaffold floor, and use the same in framing a 
partition below, thus adding " bay " to my whole scaffold, 
giving me ample storage room for seven or eight tons of 
hay. "My hay being cut, <fec, by the best team in the 
town, current report ;" and it was a true one. My haying 
was first of all, complete in barn, June 30th, having saved four 
tons and more of best quality and make. While the men 
were at work, I carried them fresh cold prepared drink and 
lunch a. M. and p. M., not forgetting. Als^o directed in all 
which, and how, by the men asking me, raking after cart 
as politely as croquet moves, rushing seventy-five hay covers 
(from Mr. Haston) when a shower appeared, to protect the 



81 

food for dumb beasts, putting most all on, without assistance 
upon bundles of liny, sixty-five in number, with thunder and 
lightning, and ere the pins were all fastened, I was drenched 
more thoroughly than by immersion. Reader, I am a 
terrible sufferer from rheumatism, and am affected the worst 
in hot weather. And since my physical constitution was 
completely wrecked by the ball club blow, the least extra 
exercise will throw me into dripping perspiration, obliging 
me, for my own nervous endurance, to change my apparel 
three or four times per day, if not a dozen of times, and 
at the same time using crash towel with salt, wormwood 
regulator or hot drops, taking regulator at said times which 
is hot drops, and more so, having other ingredients, making 
it a great medicinal for me in staving off rheumatism. 

Paying O'Brien $2.75 per day, and dinners, &c, Morse $2 
per day, &c. 

Span, &c, $5 per day, and had I been as wise the summer 
of 1876, I could have $50 income clear, instead of Sher- 
man's nothing. 

July 6th, 1877. — Whiting and Stoddard's case was tried 
before a sheriff's jury in July ; the hearing occupied five days 
more or less. I was present two days, long enough to see the 
spirit of the parties concerned. Mr. De Bevoise was present 
all the time I was there, and report said all through the five 
days, and the anxiety depicted on his countenance, and his 
coming forward as if to put words in their mouths, awhile he 
was, with right hand upon Mrs. Bartlett's or Miss Stoddard's 
chair; at last he detected with his scrutinizing eye, as he calls 
it, a spicier. DeBevoise : " Mrs. Bartlett, there is a spider 
in your shawl, I'm afraid it will bite you." That little insect 
in the shawl's folds was not larger than a fly speck. I 
had to move for the performance. DeBevoise could not 
fail to understand the expression of my face/ And such 
testimony as was given under oath by church members, 
and railroad benefited men was enough to fill one with 
disgust and horror to see how cheap their souls were being 
weighed. I left. "Went to Montpelier to attend the Amer- 
ican Institute of Instruction, and every hour was teeming 
with new avenues of thought ; the citizens, so magnanimous, 



82 

were doubly munificent, going, as I did, from that carniv- 
orous scene. Judge Aldrich, Secretary Dickenson, late princi- 
pal of the Normal school, Westfield ; Professor Walton and 
many others I am accustomed to meet at those educational 
meetings — no one from North Brookfield but me. Such 
scenes are not as attractive as the ball rooms for the class 
employed, and it is my opinion not one teacher is a member 
of it. 

July 6th and 7th, Stoddard Court. — Tim Clark, merchant, 
cheap freight recipient, occupied, as report has it, a whole 
day in Sheriff's Court, costing $100, trying to save railroad 
defendants. Report had it court expenses were $200 per 
day. Thus it is apparent that the town railroad defendants 
must have expended in law in railroad suits nearer $1,500 
than $1,000. I think a town meeting ought to be called, and 
a legal vote taken as to how much money shall the town raise 
to pay for railroad law suits pending before another suit is 
tried ; because Bates, &c, have repeatedly said that they 
should keep Miss Hill in court till she would not have a cent 
left. My advice to these railroad lunatics is, hadn't you 
better consider the statutes awhile ; peradventure Mrs. Hill 
may find even in Massachusetts counsel, that Bates masons, 
" big shop" Bacheller, cannot bribe, therefore statutes may 
be vindicated. 

July 10th, 11th, 12th, at Montpelier Institute.— The 12th, 
4 o'clock p. M., I leave the lecture hall, as all were requested 
thus to do who had heard Prof. Marshall and seen his cal- 
cium Yosemite views, that the hundreds of citizens might 
have a chance to enter the hall and thus be recipients of 
some benefit to be cherished in their memories while they 
had given so generously and munificently of their rich 
heritage for the comfort of hundreds of teachers and profess- 
ors. I wish*to mention the Capitol building, though I had 
read descriptions thereof, the stately grandeur of which was 
never realized in the least until I mounted those stone steps, 
and entering, .going through the different historical rooms. 
In the Senate Chamber and Representative Hall, being 
chosen speaker, I was seated in the judge's chair in both 
departments, my decision adjourning the court in both 



83 

" Houses." We then mounted the tower ; being so dizzy, a 
gentleman escort had to hold me with considerable aid when 
in the highest audience room "viewing the prospect o'er." 
To look down around I was too giddy to see but very little, 
but in the nigh distance those mountain tops round about, 
those hills and vales, and all upon them so plain to be seen 
by my naked eye, I was held long speechless in silent adora- 
tion to Almighty God. My guide and staff spoke : " You 
seem dumb.'' " Yes ; the glories to behold." I cannot look 
down, oh, so sick, but when I raise my eyes up, off, around 
in the distance all is clear as noon day. It interprets thus : 
Leave those things about you, get to those beyond and 
above. I regret I cannot recall the names of my guide and 
benefactor and wife and the three teachers near-by (my book 
for names I have not here). 

In going down we come to the British relic all readers 
know about. And there was a learned gentleman with his 
half dozen lady teachers, all young, flirty, very intelligent 
you must know. The gentleman had asked each one to 
examine that relic and tell what a certain mark meant. 
Not one of those normal graduates had the remotest idea. 
The gentleman seeing me, says, " Madam, you come here ; 
just stand back ; let this lady see ; call over the different 
parts of this relic." The first announced, British private 
mark. There the old teacher informs first word. Oh, so 
little thinking is done by students ! I mean practical 
thought. 

In the law library and the other. It seemed as if I could 
stay and learn years, and not be weary. I had bought tick- 
ets to Mount Washington, paying $8.75 by way of Wells 
River — going to the summit from Montpelier, returning 
through Bethlehem, Littleton, Franconia Notch to Wells 
River, thence to Worcester ; the round trip from Worcester 
to Montpelier was $8. $16.75 was railroad lares, and $30 
less 25 cents, paid every expense ; 7 days. Thus young 
students travel to learn, and be more in God's image. 
Professor Richards, wife, and sister, Professor Oomin of 
Worcester, and others, took the 5 o'clock train for White 
Mountains with me. I bought and paid for the first 



84 

excursion ticket to Mount Washington, the agent sold. 
Three or four teachers saying, " Why wait till you know who 
is going, etc. We are to start at 5 P.M., and I am going if 
the cars c tn, or will carry me by this ticket." Agent, "I give 
you a note of introduction to the proprietor of Fabyan House, 
and your room will be all you can ask or desire." But a 
happier crew never was in a car room, and in ascending to 
.'the top of Mount Washington, 6,000 feet, I was not dizzy 
once. My eyes stopped not for frivolity, but was taking in 
knowledge, every fleeting moment, to feed my soul to all 
eternity. The Crawford Notch, the Bethlehem House, 
Franeonia Notch, the Cascades and Boulder, the Flume 
House, the Old Man of the Mountain, Echo Lake, tli8 
thunder shower at my feet, the Cannon Mountain, Mount 
Lafayette, the basin, the pool — each speaks volumes to 
'me for meditation. When sitting upon the beam above 
that huge boulder in Franeonia Notch, and the waters 
rushing on madly, far, far below me, I cried out, "Wilt 
thou not, Almighty God, reveal to me this wondrous mys- 
tery, this work of thine almighty power, that fills me with 
awe, almost with terror ; yet adoration rises ; how great and 
mighty are thy works ! ! ! What is man, that thou art 
mindful of him? " I returned to hotel, thus walking four- 
teen miles between 9 A.M. and 4 p.m. I had no infirmity in 
that mountain air. 

In North Brookfield, July 31st, 1877, by Rev. G. H. DeBe- 
voise, Charles A. French and Marion M. Smith, both of this 
town. Notwithstanding C. A. F. treated his companions in 
"big shop," according to its requirements, he was sere- 
naded August 1st, at 9:30 P. M. In other words, the very 
vaults of heaven rang with the hideous noise of the mob, 
who, with groans, yells, tin pans and horns, boilers, brass 
kettles, all belched forth, as if in interpretation to be under- 
stood by all— this is our vernacular— in open violation of the 
Tevised by-laws of the town, under article fourth, sections 
first and seventh. Mr. and Mrs. French, seniors, being in 
a very feeble state of health; Mr. French lying at the point 
of death many days, and his life despaired of for weeks, 
was just able to get around. His wife was in a recent para- 



85 

lyzing condition, making them botli suffer intensely from the 
savage noise, and insult. Charles, seeing his father's and 
mother's mental suffering, was tempted almost to use his 
gun, Charley's report has it saw Bothwell and Foster. At 
any rate, I saw the Furnace boy in its scene, a boisterous, 
actor ; and I saw a man in the distance I culled BothweH. 
Said men, if it was them — and I am very sure it was — did 
not arrest any of the party and put them in the felon's cell, 
but let them bellow a long time, and then said "dry up," 
though their savage noise was heard miles, and the kettles, 
trucks, of all descriptions, left about said French's yard, etc. 
I was leaving Alden Olmstead's house, as some of the 
actors passed me, and took pains to spot that proceeding, 
being reporter, you will remember. 

So much for officers and by-laws. It was spoken of as a 
"rich thing" by many citizens. 

August 17th, 1877.— The North Brookfield little semi- 
monthly journal issued the following : "A few days since we 
had the pleasure of conversing with a gentleman on this 
subject, hearing a laughable account of his observations in a 
neighboring town that is out of debt. He said there had 
been five suicides within two years. There was no public or 
private enterprise, a strawsdiop had been in operation but 
the proprietor had moved the stock to an adjoining town 
that had a debt and offering the buildings at ruinous prices. 
There were a few young men, nearly all moving out of town 
when they became of age, and those that remained were 
idiots. It all goes to show that if a tow'n wishes any public 
improvement it must have money, and this makes debt, &c." 
Reader, I was astonished that the editor had not common 
sense enough to know the above mentioned gentleman was 
ridiculing North Brookfield, Mass. Five suicides have taken 
place within the two years in said North Brookfield, two 
of them being so near the " big shop " had it not been for 
obstacles between, the blood and brains of the two men might 
have sprinkled posts at two meeting houses, Methodist, and 
First Congregational Church, but those marvelously con- 
structed brains. Had there been no obstacles, which were 
bespattered with brains, and blood, and said blood &c, had 



86 

readied the posts thereof they would have called it a " bibli- 
cal symbol pass-over," I believe. 

As for the young men above mentioned (I ought to know) 
I will say this "It is putty much so " As for the straw- 
shop — I don't know, but am informed on reliable authority — 
that incident belongs to our midst also. 

Said journal also states if the Southbridge and Brookfield 
Railroad makes its terminus at East Brookfield — and it 
is probable it will be — it will be largely due to the untiring 
efforts of T. C. Bates who has given and is still devoting 
much time and attention to the work. Selah. Free rides 
loom prospectively in the late glassware drummer's mind. 
How many dollars I shall have saved on car fares, say 
nothing more, I shall soon«be railroad king," etc. 

August, 1877. — I have decided to build me a large room 15 
feet by 17 to join my barn and wood- house, giving me reci- 
tation room and entrance into barn, which I have for years 
been saving of my small income to do. Thirty years to-day I 
laid my beautiful babe (my second born) in the cold, silent 
tomb. Thus my monument for my four lost boys and L. 
shall be completed together. My wall must be. built this 
fall round the railroad, to shield me from those engine 
spark fires. Oh ! how much expense that railroad has 
been to me. $300 will not draw the stone and build the 
wall. See the devastation of my property to make a dozen 
or more icealthy. And the treatment I have received from 
those men, the illegality of their proceedings in open defi- 
ance of the statutes, makes them as eligible to State prison 
as the Northampton bank robbers, and more so ; they are 
robbing the widows and fatherless. And my every effort 
which has been untiring has been contemptuously maltreat- 
ed. In the words of old Legree in Uncle Tom's Cabin, 
" D — n you, we've got you ; help yourself if you can." Thus 
I am hampered by those ravenous wolves for monej 7 . I will 
start this minute and tell Alden Bacheller, who is being 
made from poor to rich by this road, he must without delay 
remove the posts of railroad fence upon my land, for I shall 
build a wall in September to protect my mowings. At his 
store I said : " Mr. Bacheller, don't notice nor even look at me. 



87 

I mean business, and at once." " Mrs. Hill, I have beard 
enough about that ; the railroad fence will not be meddled 
with, and I don't want to hear anything more about it. The 
posts on my land will be ousted if you don't remove them. I 
suppose an- action for trespass can be issued. I wish the 
assistance you give the lawyers." " But now hear, Bacheller, 
.1 never will speak to you about this or that on railroad ad- 
justment with me again. The defendants will have to apply 
to me, or meet the law." Bacheller : " I guess we can stand 
the law as long as you can," etc. Exit. 

I then made my way to Mrs. Wm. H. Ayres to hire B. 
Morse to cut my rowen. The rowen is cut and dried with- 
out being wet, Mr. Haston and Mahoney assisting. They 
say there is over a ton of it. It looks so good, I almost 
think I might eat with "Nebuchadnezzar." Robert is hired 
till my work is completed, more or less, when Mrs. Ayres 
does not want him at her work. At Worcester, to buy win- 
dows, doors and shingles, for building my L, at Forbusk & 
Co., trade made cash on delivery, the time September, to be 
completed. I have my $50 bank book, money invested when 
working for Barnard, and Sumner & Co., in 18G1 or '62. 
I go to bank for said investment (Mrs. Wm. H. Beecher 
having said book in her custody till within a few weeks of 
her death in 1870), Mrs. Beecher causing it to be thus kept 
so that I might have an income accumulating. The clerk 
takes the book, saying, " We have paid you your interest." 
Very true ; upon another investment. Impudently — " How 
came you by two books ?" " By asking an eminent lawyer 
you know well, and his investing where he thought best, I 
directing him thus to do. I did not know what bank till said 
lawyer gave me the book." " We never give out two books." 
" Sir, I have two," &c. My bank book is still there, but a 
young lawyer was called to protect the same from the bank 
thieves, and a law suit is to come of that, and, reader, I will 
state publicly how it ends, by the press. I then go on to 
G. H. Clark's store and get a witness, and give the other 
book in presence of the witness for $450. I was not quite 
ready to have that taken too. My aged counsel tells me I 
must be ready for court in September. I demur. 



88 

He asked me if I bad counsel ready to meet my case, 
" for I tell you, Mrs. Hill, I do nothing in court." " My 
case cannot be tried, as my most important witness is not in 
the United States, and cannot be. Squire : " I tell you, 
Mrs. Hill, you mud be ready. The town will not let it be 
put over. I think, sir, I know too well about court. At 
the time ? of Duncan's Court I plead with tears, being the 
plaintiff, to have the hearing in September and December, 
amr was obliged to wait till last of March ; Judge Aldrich 
calming me by saying I must wait till December. Squire : 
" The town is ready, and want it settled — and I, the injured 
party, won't pay for that town's depredations and robbery. 
Not much of a look, when counsel pleads for town instead of 
party employing him. The town will be informed who my 
counsel is the day of the sitting of said court. They will 
then have ample time to make tenders. In full bubble 
I pass into the street, starting for Court House ; when about 
half way there I met the legal adviser of the town. " You 
will please, sir, not think, or make effort to have my railroad 
suit (entered December last) have a hearing this coming 
court. I am not ready, and cannot be for good reason ; and 
sir, I trust' you as a gentleman, that no attempt will be 
made by the town, who have my property stolen in posses- 
sion, thus making costs. "Mrs. Hill, you will have no 
trouble," &c. " Thanks." I then went to the other coun- 
sel ; he being absent, I left word my case could not be 
heard, and should said V. make an effort for his thief clients 
it will be as though he was talking to the " old man in the 
mountain." He (V.) will remember my effort to have Dun- 
can's trial hastened. "You anything more to offer?" "No, 
sir — good day." I then told my brother's counsel I had 
in possession papers beneficial to his case, and I wish it 
could have been otherwise. My case first, as I have the 
papers and much better prepared for this issue. Brother's 
counsel : " I shan't try it." "Has any one asked you to ?" 
I have not had, neither wished for any legal advice on my 
railroad case since the appointment of railroad bonds. 
I have lull knowledge of the statute's requirements. I then 
said, " I wish you, gentlemen, to bring my brother's case to a 



89 

successful issue." Counsel for brother : " Tyler must come 
down so and so." I " can't see what you wish him to come 
down for, &c. He cannot add a word, nor wish to take 
from, as he well knows I have every point at issue, is well 
prepared, which will bo irrevocable, conclusive evidence in 
the power of faithful counsel to bring judgment in his 
favor, &c." Notwithstanding all that ! ! ! my brother 
was summoned next day to come at once to prepare for 
court. Reader, I trust you have checked. My brother ivent 
down, and down it toas. And the appalling expense of court 
and demand for so much money, &c. The next morning, at an 
early hour my brother was waited on by deputized agent for 
first time since the commissioners' award, and the settlement 
was effected in part, and concluded finally next day, to my 
astonishment. But I availed myself of being down to court 
Monday. Judge Aldrich presiding, saw and heard the jury 
sworn. My brother's counsel coming to me and asking for 
said brother, I said " He has complied with your directions." 
"Why did not he send me word?" &c. "You could not 
expect me to come to your office after heralding ; you told 
me you would enter my case, and that's all, &c. You have 
not entered my case, nor put it over. I effected my case — 
not being on this term court — with the town's counsel, my 
only expense for the term, is its fee, I trust ; I can ill affurd 
this bleeding. 

This is 3d September, 1877. 

Commonwealth of Massachusetts, ) 

Worcester, f ss - : 

At * meeting of the County Commissioners begun and 
holden at Worcester, within and for the County of Worces- 
ter, on the second Tuesday of September, A. D. 1875, and 
by adjournment on the first day of December, A. D. 1875. 

To the Honorable, the County Commissioners, within and 

for the County of Worcester : 

Respectfully represents your petitioner Elizabeth R. 

Hill, of North Brooktield, in said county, that she has been 

for a long time and now is, the owner of two certain tracts 



90 

of land situated in said North Brookfield. First tract of 
about six acres bounded south by a highway running by the 
Walnut Grove Cemetery, east by said cemetery, north by 
road leading from North Brookfield to East Brookfield. 
west by road leading from Moses Tyler's to Spunky Hol- 
low, so called. 

Second tract bounded on the east by said last named 
road, south by land of Mrs. A. B. Stoddard, west by said 
Stoddard's land, north by road from North to East Brook- 
field, and containing a'oout two acres ; said tracts are only 
separated by said Spunky Hollow Road. 

That the North Brookfield Railroad Company, a railroad 
corporation duly organized, have laid out and located their 
railroad while your petitioner was the owner of said tracts, 
through both of said tracts, running easterly and westerly 
through the same, taking a strip five rods wide through each 
of said tracts, and have taken about .804 acres from the 
first above described lot and about .350 acres from the 
second described tract, as per plan furnished your petitioner 
by said railroad company, thereby causing great damage to 
your petitioner, separating said tracts into four tracts, and 
leaving what they do not take in bad and inconvenient 
shape and otherwise greatly injuring those portions of said 
tracts not taken, and have taken and converted to their own 
use large quantities of stone wall standing on said tract ; 
and your petitioner was obliged to cut a large number of 
valuable trees standiug and growing upon said tracts ; and 
have discontinued said Spunky Hollow road by filling up 
the same and obstructing the travel thereon ; and your pe- 
titioner is unable to agree with said company as to her 
damages. 

Wherefore your petitioner prays that your Honorable 
Board, after due notice to all persons interested, will view 
the premises and assess your petitioner said damages in 
the premises, and order all such culverts, cattle guards, 
crossings and structures as are necessary and proper, to be 
made by said railroad company, and also pray the said rail- 
road company may be required by your Honorable Board 
to give satisfactory security to your petitioner for any dam- 



91 

ages and costs that may be assessed by your Board or a 
jury. 

North Brookfield, Mass., Sept. 3d, 1875. 

Elizabeth R. Hill. 

Commonwealth of Massachusetts, ) 
Worcester, j 

At a meeting of the County commissioners begun and 
holden at Worcester, within and for the County of Worces- 
ter, on the third Tuesday of June, A. D. 1875, and by 
adjournment on the third day of September, A. D. 1875. 

On the petition aforesaid it is ordered, that the petitioner 
notify the said North Brookfield Railroad Company, that 
said County Commissioners will meet at the Town Hall in 
said North Brookfield, in said County, on Friday the fif- 
teenth day of October, at ten of the clock iri the forenoon, 
by serving said railroad company with an attested copy of 
said petition and this order fourteen days at least before 
the time of said meeting, that they may then and there ap- 
pear and show cause why the prayer of said petition should 
not be granted. 

BOND. 

Know all Men by these Presents, That the North Brook- 
field Railroad Company, by Bonum Nye, President of said 
Railroad Company, duly authorized by a vote of the Board 
of Directors passed Dec. 31, 1875, as principal, and Alden 
Batcheller, William H. Montague, John B. Dewing, of said 
North Brookfield, as sureties, are holden and stand firmly 
bound and obliged unto Elizabeth R. Hill, of said North 
Brookfield, in the full and just sum of three thousand dol- 
lars, to be paid unto the said Elizabeth R. Hill, her execu- 
tors, administrators or assigns ; to the which payment, well 
and truly to be made, we bind ourselves and our heirs, exec- 
utors and administrators, firmly by these presents. 

Witness our hands and seals, dated the thirty-first day of 
December, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hun- 
dred and seventy-five. 

The condition of this obligation is such, That whereas the 
said North Brookfield Railroad Company have located their 



92 

railroad in said North Brookfield on land of said Elizabeth 
R. Hill, and taken the same for tho construction of the said 
railroad, and thereby causing damage to her ; now, there- 
fore, if the said railroad company shall well and truly pay 
the said Elizabeth R. Hill the amount of damages and costs 
she may be legally entitled to, as may be assessed by the 
county commissioners or a jury, then this bond is null and 
void, otherwise to remain in full force and virtue. 

North Brookfield Railroad Company by 

Bonum Nye, Pres. [l. s -1 

By vote of Board of Directors, 

In presence of Alden Batcheller, [l. s.] 

Charles Duncan, W. H. Montague, [l. s.] 

E. D. Batcheller. John B. Dewing. [l. s.] 

[No. 346.] 
Worcester, ss. 

Clerk's Office of the County Commissioners. 

Costs taxed by order of said Commissioners on the petition 
of Elizabeth It. Hill, for assessment of damages, vs. 
North Brookfield R. K Co. : 

Services of Commissioners $15 00 

Report for Record 

Examining Road for Acceptance 

Printer's Bill 

Officer's Fees 

Clerk's Fees — 

Entry, &c $1 25 

Order of Notice 1 60 

Clerk's term fees for two terms, at 40 

cents a term 80 

Record 1 00 

Copy of Report 1 60 

* J 6 25 

$21 25 

Worcester, , 18 

Received of , the sum of dollars and 

cents, in full for tho above costs. 



r 



)3 



Warrant for Town Meeting. 

Worcester, ss. : 

To Sylyander Bothwell, Constable of the Town 

of North Brookfield, in said County, 
Greeting : 

In the name of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, you 
are directed to notify the inhabitants of the town of North 
Brookfield, qualified to vote in elections, and town officers, 
to meet at the Town Hall, in said North Brookfield, on 
Friday, the 29th day of January, inst., at ten of the clock 
a. m., there and then to act on the following articles : 

1st. To choose a Moderator, to preside in said meeting. 

2d. To see if the town will vote to subscribe for and 
hold shares in the capital stock of the North Brookfield 
Railroad Company, a railroad corporation, to be formed 
under chapter 53 of the Acts of the year 1872, for the pur- 
pose of building a railroad from North Brookfield to East 
Brookfield. 

3d. To see if the town will vote to become an associate for 
the foundation of the North Brookfield Railroad Company, a 
railroad corporation to be formed under chapter 53 of the 
Acts of the year 1872, for the purpose of building a railroad 
from North Brookfield to East Brookfield. 

4th. To see what action the town will take in regard to 
raising money to aid in building a railroad from North 
Brookfield to East Brookfield, and act tbereon. 

And yon are directed to serve this warrant, by posting up 
attested copies thereof ; one at the Town House, and one at 
the Post Office, in said town, seven days at least, before the 
time of holding said meeting. 

Thereof fail not to make due return of this warrant, with 
your doings thereon, to the Town Clei'k, at the time and 
place of meeting aforesaid. 

Given under our hands this 22d day of January, in the 
year 1875. 

Warren Tyler, ] Selectmen 
Geo. 0. Lincoln, v of 

John B. Dewing, j North Brookfield. 
(A true copy.) 

Attest — Sylyander Bothwell, 
Constable of North Brookfield. 



91 

LEASE OF THE NORTH BROOKFIELD RAILROAD 

TO THE 

BOSTON & ALBANY RAILROAD COMPANY. 

This Indenture, 
Made this first day of January, A. D. 1876, by and between 
the North Brookfield Railroad Company, a corporation 
created by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, party of 
the first part ; and the Boston & Albany Railroad Company, 
a corporation created by said Commonwealth, with whose 
road the road of said party of the first part connects in the 
Town of Brookfield, in said commonwealth, party of the 
second part, 

Witnesseth, That the said party of the first part doth 
hereby grant, lease, demise and let unto the said party of 
the second part, its successors and assigns, the North Brook- 
field Railroad, that is to say, the whole of the railroad of 
said party of the first part, extending from the depot build- 
ing on the line of the Boston & Albar^ Railroad at East 
Brookfield Village, in the Town of Brookfield, Massachusetts, 
to and into the town of North Brookfield, Massachusetts, as 
far as the village, and to the line of the shoe factory of 
Messrs. E. & A H. Batcheller & Company, with all the real 
estate, rights, powers, easements, tenements, franchises, 
privileges and appurtenances and equipment appurtenant to 
said railroad, or belonging to said North Brookfield Rail- 
road Company, and all the branch tracks, turnouts, depot 
grounds, stations, both freight and passenger buildings, car 
houses, engine houses, water tanks and water rights, turn- 
tables, superstructure and fixtures connected, or used with, 
or belonging to said railroad, or to said North Brookfield 
Railroad Company, and all lands upon which the same are 
now situated, or which belong to or have been taken by said 
company, whether included in its location or not, and wher- 
ever situated ; and all personal property connected or de- 
signed for use, with all or any part of the premises hereby 
demised ; except the hall in the second story of the brick 
depot over the passenger rooms, which hall said party of 
the first part shall have the right to rent or use, but for such 



95 

purposes only as shall not be injurious to the interests of 
said party of the second part. 

To have and to hold the said railroad and other premises 
hereby demised unto the said Boston & Albany Railroad 
Company, its successors and assigns, for and during the full 
term of ten }ears from the first day of January, A. T>. 1876. 
And said party of the first part agree that said Boston & 
Albany Railroad Company shall have the sole and exclusive 
right, during said term, to hold, use and enjoy, run and 
operate the premises hereby demised ; to fix, establish, col- 
lect, receive and retain for its own use and benefit all tolls, 
fares, rents, or compensation for the use thereof or for any 
transportation, or for anything done therewith or thereon, 
except as hereby otherwise provided, and at its expense and 
pleasure to use or authorize any one to use the name of said 
party of the first part, whenever necessary or convenient to 
enforce, secure, retain or enjoy any right or thing hereby 
granted, demised, promised or given, and any such authority 
to revoke. 

Said party of the first part agrees, at its own expense, 
during said term to execute all instruments and to do all 
things required by law or reasonably requested by the said 
party of the second part ; to preserve and maintain the cor- 
porate rights and existence of said party of the first part 
and its legal organization from year to year and at all times, 
or which may be necessary or reasonably requested by said 
party of the second part to confirm, secure, protect, and as- 
sure to said party of the second part all and whatever is 
hereby granted, demised, promised or given to said party of 
the second part ; and to do all things which said party of 
the first part is required by law to do, except those which 
said party of the second part hereby agrees or is hereby 
permitted to do. 

And the said party of the first part agrees to assume and 
pay all taxes, whether National, State County, Town, or 
other taxes that shall in any way be directly or indirectly 
either legally assessed upon or to said party of the first 
part, or upon or to its property, road, franchises, business, 
receipts or income, whether assessed to or against the said 



96 

party of the first part or said party of the second part, or 
shall be assessed upon the capital stock of said party of the 
first part to either of the parties hereto. 

The said party of the second part, in consideration of the 
above premises, covenants and agrees with the said party of 
the first part, that it, the said party of the second part will, 
with its own servants and rolling stock, and at its own ex- 
pense, run and operate said North Brookfield Railroad 
hereby demised, excepting always that portion of said rail- 
road which extends from the depot of said party of the first 
part, in the Town of North Brookfield, to the stop of Messrs. 
E. & A. H. Batcheller & Company, during the term of this 
lease, in such a manner as shall be reasonable and proper 
for a railroad of its class and description and for the bus- 
iness upon its route, running such trains as may be found 
necessary lor the reasonable accommodation of the public. 
But said party of the first part agrees that said party of 
the second part may either permit any one or more per- 
sons or corporations at any time or times, or from time to 
time, both to do or cause to be done, all transportation which 
shall be done, or which any one shall be entitled to have 
done upon or over said above excepted portion of said rail- 
road, and to use and occupy said portion, and also all such 
part or parts of any property or premises hereby demised as 
lie or lies west of said depot in North Brookfield, or may 
itself use, occupy and operate said portion, part or parts in 
any way. 

Said party of the second part hereby covenants and agrees 
during said term of ten years, at its own expense, to keep all 
the property and premises hereby demised, excepting the 
said above excepted portion of said railroad, and such por- 
tion, part or parts of said property and premises as said 
party of the first part hereby agrees that said party of the 
second part may permit any other persons or corporations 
to use and occupy, in as good condition, and to keep said 
excepted portion, part or parts, in as safe condition, reason- 
able wear and tear in each case excepted, as the same re- 
spectively were in, when received by and delivered to said 
party of the second part, and also to pay any and all dam- 



97 

ages for which said party of the first part shall in any way 
become liable for loss of, or injury to life, limb, persons or 
property, incurred by or in either the runuing or use of said 
railroad, or of any part of the premises hereby demised by 
any person or corporation, or by or through any act, neglect 
or omissions of said property of the second part. 

The party of the second part hereby covenants and agrees 
to keep at all times during said term full, just and true ac- 
counts of all the gross receipts by it derived from the run- 
ning of said North Brookfield Railroad, or the use of any 
property hereby demised, and to make a full report to said 
part}* of the first part of said gross receipts seini-annually, 
that is to say, on the first day of August in each year during 
said term, for the sis months ending with the then next pre- 
ceding month of June, and on the first day of February, in 
each year during said term for the six months ending with 
the then next preceding month of December, and to pay to 
said party of the first part as rent, and in full compensation 
for the use of the premises hereby demised anuually on the 
first day of February in each year, during said term, twenty- 
five per cent., of what shall remain of the entire gross receipts 
aforesaid, for the year ending with the month of December, 
then next preceding, after deducting from said gross receipts, 
before any appropriation or payment of any part thereof, 
for any other purpose, the sum of two thousand dollars 
($2,000), which sum shall be retained by said party of tlie 
second part, for its own use and benefit as compensation for 
the use by it on said North Brookfield Railroad of the roll- 
ing stock of said party of the second part, for that year. 

And it is further stipulated and agreed by and between 
the parties hereto, that the price of one first class passenger's 
fare from North Brookfield village to East Brookfield, or 
from East Brookfield to North Brookfield village shall not 
exceed fifteen cents per trip, and the rate of freight trans- 
portation between said points shall not exceed seventy cents 
per ton, and for coal in carloads shall not exceed fifty cents 
per gross ton. 

Aud it is further agreed that said party of the second part 
shall have the right to make special freight contracts or rates 



98 

for transportation with heavy shippers at as. much less rates 
as they choose, but in which event the pro rata portion ot 
actual receipts shall be credited and allowed as receipts from 
the North Brookfield Railroad at the same rate per mile on 
freight and passengers transported over any part ot it, and 
of the Boston & Albany Railroad, as said party of the second 
part receives on the same. 

And it is further agreed by and between the parties hereto 
that the said party of the second part shall have the right to 
make, lay .and construct any tracks, buildings, additions or 
alterations and permanent improvements which its directors 
shall think fit to make to or on said North Brookfield Rail- 
road, its construction, road, tracks, superstructure, depots 
and appurtenances, or in or on any part or parts of the prop- 
erty or premises hereby demised during said term of ten 
years, all such tracks, buildings, additions, alterations and 
improvements, if any to be made at the expense of said party 
of the second part, and at no cost whatever to said party of 
the first part, unless it, the said party of the first part shall 
have been consulted in relation to the same, prior to their 
being done, and shall have agreed in writing or by a formal 
vote of its directors to assume or share the expense thereof. 

And it is further stipulated and agreed that the party of 
the first part may at any time build or cause to be built, at 
its own risk and expense, such building or buildings upon 
its grounds as it may deem necessary for its business inte- 
rests, if the party of the second part shall have been first 
consulted in regardjto their location and building and have 
consented thereto in writing or by a formal vote of the 
directors. 

And it is further agreed and understood that the entire 
rolling stock and equipment andjill other personal property 
furnished by the party of the second part for the operation 
or use of all or any part of said North Brookfield Railroad 
or any purpose, and any real property so furnished, except 
such buildings and tracks as shall be affixed to the real 
estate of said North Brookfield Railroad Company, shall 
remain at all times the property of the said party of the 
second part, and may be removed or held by it at any time 
and for its own use and benefit. 



99 

And it is further stipulated arid agreed that in case any 
difference shall arise as to the construction or effect of any 
stipulation herein contained or as to any claim arising 
under the same, the same shall be submitted to the arbi- 
tration of three persons, who shall be mutually agreed upon 
by the parties hereto, and the award of all or a majority of 
said three persons shall be final in the premises. 

And it is further understood and agreed by each party 
hereto, that all promises and agreements hereby made by 
such party are made, and shall be considered to be made 
with the other party hereto and shall extend to, and enure 
for the benefit of the successors or assigns of the party with 
or to whom or for whose benefit such agreement or promises 
are made. 

In witness whereof the said North Brookfield Railroad 
Company, by Bonum Nye, its president, hereto duly author- 
ized, and the said Boston & Albany Railroad Company, by 
D. Waldo Lincoln, its vice president, hereto duly authorized, 
have hereto and to one other instrument of like tenor aud 
date herewith, signed their corporate names, and set their 
common seals the day and year first above written. 

At a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Boston & 
Albany Railroad Company, duly held in the City of Boston, 
on the 13th day of February, 1877, an indenture of Lease 
of the North Brookfield Railroad Company, as above writ- 
ten, was submitted and considered, and it was thereupon. 

Voted, " That the directors of the Boston & Albany Rail- 
road Company do hereby agree to and approve a lease by 
the North Brookfield Railroad Company to the Boston & 
Albany Railroad Company, dated the first day of January, 
A. D. 1876, for ten years from said first day of January, 
and all the terms as set forth and contained therein, and 
that said lease, be submitted to the meeting of the stock- 
holders of said Boston & Albany Railroad Company, to be 
held in Boston on the 14th day of February, current for the 
purpose of seeing if said stockholders will approve of the 
same and of said terms. 

[Attest,] J. A. Rumeill, 

Secretary and Clerk of the Boston & Albany 

R. R. Co. 



100 

[Spencer Sun, August 3d, 1877.] 

The Railroad Case. 

Mr. Editor, — The proper appraisal of land taken by towns 
or corporations for public purposes, is a subject important 
to all concerned ; and a right understanding of the law in re- 
lation to it may save much trouble and expensive litigation. 
All know that such taking is authorized by law, and wisely 
so, as without such power no public improvement could be 
made. If the consent of all parties must be obtained, no 
enterprise, great or small, could be accomplished. The law 
not onl} 7 provides for the taking of the land, but secures to 
the owner the proper facilities for obtaining a fair compen- 
sation .for the same, and any damage sustained in the 
premises. 

In the first place, by agreement of the parties. If that is 
not effected, then by appraisal of the county commissioners ; 
and in case their doings should not satisf}% then a sheriff's 
jury called upon the premises again to consider the ques- 
tion ; and if their estimate of the value of the land taken 
exceeds the amount awarded by the commissioners, the cost 
in both cases falls on the corporation ; or the party may ap- 
peal directly from the commissioners to the court. 

That jurors and appraisers sometimes adopt a wrong 
standard of value in such cases, is evidenced by the deomion 
of the case of the heirs of Dexter Stoddard vs. The North 
Brookfield Eailroad Co. 

The question in such cases is, not what the land taken is 
worth to the railroad corporation, neither is the fictitious 
price that the owner is pleased to place on the property to 
be considered. Either of these considerations might as 
effectually block the wheels of any enterprise as if no rights 
Lad been secured in that connection. 

The decision must be based on the cash value of the land, 
if sold for any other purpose ; and if adjoining lands are 
damaged in consequence, what compensation should be 
made for such inj ury. 

It is not a consideration to be urged in such cases that 
the land is taken without the consent of the owner ; that he 



101 

does not wish to part with it ; that he is able to keep it ; 
that it has an especial value on account of its having been 
inherited from ancestors more or less remote — but simply 
the market value of the land. That is what the law in the 
case proposes to secure to the aggrieved party ; not his 
fanciful estimate of value from any other consideration. 
To illustrate. You are responsible for killing my horse. I 
set up the claim the horse was a great favorite ; that I had 
owned him long and did not want to part with him ; that he 
was safe for all my family to use — and I claim $150 damage. 

The fact of the case is that the horse was not (for sale) 
worth one third of the amount. What should I name as 
a compensation, the net market value of the animal, or my 
constructive estimate ? Such an appraisal might injure my 
feelings, and perhaps be a net loss ; but what other standard 
of value could judicious men adopt in the case ? This was 
the mistake made by the party to this suit, and we think by 
some of the jurors that sat on the case. Two sets of men, 
neither of whom had any personal interest to affect their 
judgment, had considered and decided the amount of 
damage, and it would seem that the claimant ought to have 
relied somewhat on their judgment. In addition to this, 
the railroad directors were extremely anxious to settle all 
these claims without litigation, and to accomplish this they 
made offers exceeding their own and the commissioners' 
valuation. But all to no effect. A sheriff's jury came on ; 
five days were spent on the trial ; and, but for the ex- 
travagant appraisal of some of the jurors, made under oath, 
the amount of the award would not exceed that of the 
county commissioners, and was, in fact, fifty dollars less than 
the directors had offered, for the sake of a settlement. The 
other party, whose case would have come before the same 
jury, very wisely concluded to settle as proposed by the 
directors. t 

Thinking that the history of this case might benefit the 
public, I offer it for publication in your paper. 

North Brookfield, July 30. W. 



102 

[Spencer Sun, August 17, 1877.] 

Keply to " W.'s " Letter op Aug. 3d. 

The appraisal of land taken by towns or corporations for 
public purposes authorized by law, etc. Said right needs 
no argument. But land taken for such purposes should be 
appraised by disinterested men, as the law directs, previous 
to taking, except for making surveys, is of great moment, 
as the " cases " referred to have proven. Then the parties 
aggrieved would seldom have recourse to courts. Some of 
the men appointed to assess damage on land taken by the 
North Brookfield Railroad Company, were objected to in 
writing before their appraisal of said land, as disqualified, 
etc., and a request for legal arbiters from the Board of 
Directors was refused ! The North Brookfield Railroad 
land damage rendered (as the report has it) $15,390.47-100, 
of which three out of the five appraisers took to themselves 
of that sum $7,515 for their damage. (Richly, appraisers, 
gentlemen, swallow that, will you, and call it disinterested.) 
The changeable judgment of the above referees upon some 
of the land damage claimants, was as follows : Lewis Whit- 
ing case, first assessment, $5(30, next, $750, next, $800, next, 
$900, final commissioners, $1,150 —thus you see judgment 
vvaried $590 worth. Daniel "Whiting case, first assessment, 
$1,050, next, $1,100, next, $1,200, next, $1,300, next, $1,400 
— final commissioners, $1,456. Wm. P. Haskell, bakery, for 
loss of business, he received $1,00!). " Said business, he was 
sick of, and had been trying to sell out for more than six 
months previous ! " W. Dean, butcher, $350 ; F. Stoddard, 
grocer, $400. The argument of these appraisers was, " they 
can hold a lawsuit and we must pay them well.'.' A. and E. 
Batcheller, building a stand, etc., occupied by three men just 
mentioned. Mr. A. Batcheller had said in one of the rally- 
ing, railroad meetings, " if the company would give him 
$4,000 for his place he should take it, or even $3,000." But 
tlie appraisers marched up boldly and gave them $6,000, and 
the occupants $1,750 ! Joseph Kimball, $133, for one acre 
957-1000, out of a farm valued at $800, for 80 acres, cutting 
through the most worthless part of it, a mud swamp, drain- 



103 

ing and filling, etc. If a suitable fence and cattle guards 
were made, as the statutes require, an improvement to his 
farm. Freeman Walker's case, $75 for one acre, 240-1010, 
out of a pasture of nine acres valued $100, and said sum ho 
paid for said pasture a few years previous. The land taken 
fit onl}- (one would think) as a resting place for owls and 
woodchucks. Advisory " W's " figures on J. Kimball's land 
was $300, said land joins said " W." One of the arbiters in 
making report for North Brookfield Railroad, caused to be 
printed in most of the papers of the State, " That the town 
would be against any award being granted to land damage 
claimants above the figures of the appraisers." It is but 
justice to the parties concerned that the above accurate 
facts should have equal publicity, and show cause why some 
aggrieved laud claimant desires what .the statutes will give. 
Had advisory " W " been willing that equity should pre- 
vail, he would have resigned when required thus to do. 
Also these public attempts to prejudice and buttonhole who- 
ever may chance to be called jurors, would not have been 
found in print. Work commenced in July, 1875, on the 
North Brookfield Railroad, and the commissioners did not 
come to appraise or to direct road crossing till Oct. 15th, 
1875, and April 28th, 1876. Then that body came and com- 
plied with all the violation of the statutes by the North 
Brookfield Railroad Company. The cattle-guards they au- 
thorized to be built in place of the " sham ones," is not 
done yet. The lane they granted to Lewis Whiting to be 
made by said corporation was annulled by the directors. 
The commissioners gave in afterwards ! The Whiting case 
was settled through his church friends ; and to their great 
relief, Bouum Nye had interviewed him many times, offer- 
ing him $100 out of his own pocket, if he would give him 
three years to pay it in ; four others, $50 each. Mr. Whit- 
ing settled ; he tells me these sums are not paid, and is 
unhappy because of his settlement. 

•The North Brookfield Railroad fence and cattle-guards 
are a frail sham, and the corporation were notified by a 
party aggrieved, in writing, within a year after the taking of 
the land for railroad purposes, that said fence and guards 



104 

were not safe protection for cattle, therefore, not accepted, 
together with the assessment, etc. Had the North Brook- 
field Railroad been built upon the route laid out by J. Gil- 
man, it would, without doubt, be a connecting link to the 
north and west part of the State. 

As it is built, it must ever remain the North Brookfield 
Branch Road. The grade is such, that with very little extra 
freight, the train gets stuck, as the Worcester attorneys 
can testify. At other times, its despairing puffs and tugs 
are such as to affect the sensitive ear, and draw heartfelt 
sympathy for the iron horse. 

E. R. Hill. 



[Spencer Sun, August 24th, 1877.] 

Reply to "W.'s" Letter of 3d inst. — (Continued.) 

As there remains but two land damage claimants, besides 
the one in equity, to be adjudicated, a few preliminaries 
bearing, perhaps, on " W.'s " different threads of argument 
may not be out of place. The Tyler farm, valued for taxa- 
tion in 1850, | house, 2 barns, 79 acres, $3,G00; Jenks' farm, 
house, bam, 146 acres, $3,000 ; Daniel Gilbert's land, house, 
barn, 28 acres, $2,000 ; Freeman Walker, house, barn, SSI- 
acres, $3,200 ; Amasa Walker, 2 houses, barn, shed, 57 acres, 
$7,000 ; Lewis Whiting, new house, barn, 22 acres, $1,950 , 
John H. Deland, house, barn, 50£- acres, $800 ; Bonum 
Nye, house, barn, shop, 105 acres, $,150 ; F. A. Potter, 2 
houses, barn, shed, 107| acres, $3,500 , Chas. T. Kendrick, 
90| acres, $8,900 ; David W. Lane, house, barn, 112 
acres, $2,400. In 18G8 : D. Gilbert, house, barn, 36 
acres, $3,800 ; D. Tyler, £ house, 1 barn, 47£ acres, $3,- 
000; Lewis Whiting, 22 acres, $2,500; F. A. Potter, 
108 acres, $3,500; Chas. T. Kendrick, house, barn, 30 
acres, $2,000 ; Jenks, farm, new house, barn, 146 acres, 
$3,500. In 1862 : Tyler farm, house, barn, 47 acres, $4,200; 
Daniel Giber t, house, barn, 34 acres, $4,500 ; Jenks' farm, 
house, barn, 146 acres, $3,900 ; Lewis Whiting, house, barn, 
shed, $2,450. In 1864 : Tyler farm divided, now $67 to $70 
per acre, up to the present year. Thus the reader will 



105 

plainly sec that the Tyler farm has always been taxed. I 
shall not refer to the railroad damage on said farm, as words 
are powerless to show the ignominiousness of the railroad 
appraisal ; it is soon to be in court. 

A tribunal where equity ought to reign supreme. The 
parties in suit are tauntingly assured by the glassware man 
and his followers, we shall be divested of all in the contro- 
versy, as the court is to be fully controlled by the railroad 
defendants. 

A point omitted in my letter of the 17th — A. E. Batcheller 
building and stand. The building was sold for most §1,000, 
the town paying $500 for one-half of said building which is 
now our custom house. The land connected with said build- 
ing, containing fourteen rods, sold for a little over $5,000. 
Said land, together with land owned by heirs of Dexter 
Stoddard joining, was bought by Daniel Whiting, December, 
1849, said Whiting paying $100 for the same. Thus the 
$5,000 lot cost less than $20 in 1819. Also, I stated in my 
letter that the North Brookfield Railroad would and must 
ever remain a branch road, because of its grade, or require 
two engines for constant use, should an attempt ever be 
made to go west, or north from this route. As the railroad 
is built, it is and can be clearly shown to be special indi- 
vidual profit. A. & H. Batcheller subscribed for and took 
$3,000 worth of stock in said railroad. The report has it 
that said company cleared over $20,000 on freights last year 
compared with the previous year. Thus you see in ten years 
(the term the road is leased to the Boston & Albany) said 
company will accumulate $200,000, besides all other emolu- 
ments and ease of which they are the recipients from said 
road, &c. Other parties are making wonderful strides to for- 
tune in this town, which have been and are so ably set forth 
by the late glass and crockery-ware drummer. Said business 
he followed for years, giving him this powerful vernacular over 
the ignorant and stupid, making them his mere tools for 
his and a few others' aggrandizement. Nine-tenths of said 
drummer's report as to the town's advantage in having said 
railroad is as frail and bawbling as the ware he sold was 
brittle. As said drummer has changed his business, and is 



106 

now a manufacturer of ladies' corsets in Worcester, the great 
advantage lie derives from said railroad, as be leaves Iris 
family in the morning and returns in the evening, " of course 
on a season ticket and his family eligible for free rides," as 
report has it. He and a few others, have reason to shout and 
cry aloud how great and munificent that North Brookfield 
Railroad is to us. But, readers, to have your properly taken 
illegally and you made poor individually, and your property 
a sinking fund to make a few parties' fortunes, and know that 
the thousands subscribed to the Southbridge Railroad was 
made by your ruin, is not a fanciful situation. 

North Beookfield Town Meeting. 

On the 29th of January, 1875, the following articles were 
acted upon : " Article 2. To see if the town will vote to sub- 
scribe for and hold shares in the capital stock of the North 
Brookfield Railroad Company," &c. " To see if the town 
will vote to become an associate," &c. " 4th. To see what 
action the town will take in regard to raising money to aid in 
building a railroad from North Brookfield to East Brookfield, 
&c. The second article was acted upon first; viz. : " Will the 
town subscribe for and hold shares to the amount of $90,000 in 
the capital stock of the North Brookfield Railroad Company;" 
carried. Third Article, " To see if the town would become 
an associate for the formation of the North Brookfield Rail- 
road Company ; " carried. On the fourth article, the town 
chose Chas. Adams, Jr., Bonum Nye, and S. S. Edmunds, to 
act with our town treasurer in negotiating for the amount 
subscribed for. 

Eminent lawyers, in Worcester, have been consulted upon 
the legality of the above proceedings, and the following is 
their decision : " The town had no authority, Jan. 29, 1875, 
to vote to become an associate in the North Brookfield Rail- 
road Corporation, and the subscriptions of Charles Adams, 
Jr., agent to the town, to the articles of association, and to 
$90,000 of stock, is void ! ! " The above decision, which 
canvasses a law question, has called forth from the Art Critic 
the following, which has been thrust in the burdened tax- 
payers' face : " The old maids and farmers of North Brook- 



107 

field have a bastard young one, without a backbone, thrown 
upon them to pay for and support, at the figure of $90,000." 

At the town meeting, June 14, 1875, when it was to give 
up or proceed in building the railroad, fully half of the au- 
dience were boys and unnaturalized citizens, who shouted 
and stamped uproariously, and did not hesitate to vote when 
the yeas and nays were called. Thus the vote to proceed to 
build had more than fifty illegal votes. 

The town was pledged to have the railroad fully equipped 
with rolling stock, and for $100,000. The $100,000 is taken 
up and we have no rolling stock, but we are paying to the 
Boston & Albany Railroad $2,000 per year for the use of 
rolling stock upon said road, which is six per cent, interest 
of $33,333.33^-100. Thus the demand for our road was 
$133,333 5-IOO ; thus one-third more for equipment. 

11 11. Hill. 



108 

A VOICE FROM THE CITY OF THE DEAD. 



BY E. R. HILL. 



[Suggested by the vandal spirit which characterizes the plucking of flowers 
from cemetery lots.] 

Mortals spare these blooming flowers — 

I pray, them harmless save, 
To watch through night's long dreary hours 

Round my dark, lonely grave. 

Shew kindness to these little gems— 

Don't take them from my bed ; 
More precious far than diadems 

That crown a monarch's head. 

Spare, then, oh spare this little lot, 

The only boon I crave ; 
My spirit lingers round this spot, 

And in its odors lave. 

Commit thou here no sacrilege; 

Mourners revere this plot 
And deck it with a living pledge.— 

Tho' dead, I'm not forgot. 

May all observe the ten commands, 

To break the least one dread, 
Then men won't rob, with ruthless hands, 

The city of the dead. 

Tread softly — the ground is holy ! 

See whose grave she weepeth o'er ; 
Lo, the simple superscription, — 

Little Darlings, — nothing more. 

That's enough ! These pregnant letters 

Speak a volume to the heart, 
Full of more pathetic meaning 

Than the labored lines of art. 

.North Bkookfield, August 24, 1S77. 

(Printed in Spencer Sim, Mass., August 31st, 1877.) 



109 

[Spencer Sun, August, 31st, 1811.] 

West Brookfield, August 8. 
Mr. Editor, — What's the matter with that North Brook- 
field Railroad? You seem to doubt that its dividend last 

year was 2.\ per cent. Why, they have a rising young poli- 
tician over there who figures up in their town report a 
dividend to the people of North Brookfield of 20 per cent., 
or $20,000, last year. That young man displays a head for 
figures that should warrant his immediate employment by 
the Charter Oak Insurance Company to figure up the value 
of the assets of that famous concern for the edification of 
their policy holders. I noticed one day last week no less 
than six loads of coal going over to the North village from 
here, and I understand that ever since the railroad was buiit 
our dealers have supplied coal by teams from here to the 
North 25 and 50 cents per ton cheaper than their famous 
railroad has been able to do. Parties looking at some of 
the empty shops over there with a view to business, found 
freights 70 cents per ton on the railroad and 50 cents from 
depot to shop, or $1.20 per ton, while they found that they 
could have teams bring from East Brookfield or West 
Brookfiuld io them for $1.00 per ton, or 20 cents less than 
railroad rates. The inducement to locate there to help pay 
a $70,000 railroad debt was not inviting, especially as the 
present rate to reach their shop or residence is the same as 
the old stage coach rate, unless they foot it and back their 
trunk. East Brookfield seems to be receiving nil the dividends 
declared by the North Brookfield Railroad. Nevertheless 
the rising young politician expects to declare a 40 per cent, 
dividend this year (on paper). It is rumored that the de- 
clared dividend of last year is to be used to aid the South- 
bridge Railroad, and the 40 per cent, dividend of this year 
to build your Spencer Railroad next spring. 

Facts. 



[Spencer Sun, September 1th, 1811.] 

Of the four railroad land damage claims which have been 
entered in the courts, all but that of Mrs. E. R. Hill are 



110 

now settled ; only one having been tried. No one feels like 
blaming the directors for their action in relation to rights of 
way for the road, though there is a general feeling that they 
made a great mistake in attempting to themselves adjust 
these claims in the first place, however commendaV)le their 
intentions. While the town was very unanimous in voting 
for the road, a small minority, especially those whose lands 
were to be taken, were opposed. The directors, no doubt, 
thought to conciliate all these by paying them generously, 
and even more than disinterested appraisers would be likely 
to give them, so that when the road should be completed 
and used, all opposition and local friction should cease. 
But in this they were doomed to disappointment ; for so 
long as one land owner could make himself believe that he 
was not rated as high in proportion as some other one, even 
twice or thrice the value of his land did not satisfy him. 
Townsmen who had no official connection with the road, 
and whose attention was not especially called to these land 
claims until they were in court, freely express their astonish- 
ment that the damages were laid so high not only by land 
owners but by the directors, and they cannot but ask them- 
selves why an acre or two of land taken from a larger 
amount, none of which was worth for any purpose for which 
it* could be used, more than $50 to $100 per acre should be- 
come worth $300 to $500 per acre for railroad purposes 
when the remaining lands were not damaged in regard to 
access or occupancy. Should said roads be built in other 
towns, and it be true that human nature is everywhere the 
same, the experience of North Brookfield would suggest to 
all those who shall have such matters to deal with, and who 
also desire to avoid local friction and the stirring up of bad 
blood, that they commit the appraisal of land damages to 
the legally constituted authorities outside of themselves. 



Ill 



My work and improvements are making good progress; 
I have the gentleman, for such lie seems to bo, who lives on 
Jenks' farm, engaged to build, or aid in building, my stone 
wall, take down my hewn stone tomb built by K. Hill, Jr., 
in\ 1858, the stone to be used for underpinning to my L ; 
also to raise my barn three feet or more so that a horse 
may go under. Said gentleman, and son yoke of cattle 
and horse were under engagement to work for so much per 
day till said work was completed ; also a cellar wall builder 
was hired to commence said work one week from Thursday, 
and to work from ten to twelve days, as the demand for such 
labor should require. &c. Morse working digging trenches, 
cutting weeds, cutting walnut trees, as I had marked from 
twelve to fifteen to be cut for the saw mill, having seen Doane 
of East Brookfield, and disposed of the same in part, &c. My 
faithful man accomplishing with his might all he undertook ; 
with mjr guide and help business was being dispatched. All 
at once a dozen of men, more or less, made their appearance 
on my railroad bed in my beautiful rich mowing, where I was 
performing menial services that those very men, all but two, 
were devising, and had been from the laying out of the rail- 
road, to filch me out of my last dollar if need be, to prevent 
one more cent coming out of their pockets, and most of 
them recipients of cheap freight, &c, Charles Duncan, 
Augustus Smith, T. Clark, Hiram Knight, Lewis Hill, 
Botliwell B. Thurston (enough) had told me repeatedly I 
was offered five times, ten times, nine times what it was 
worth, as their feelings happened to gull forth to insult me, 
who, in their thirst for riches and to trammel me, were 
thus arrayed, speaking loudly in words of unmistakable 
thunder by their way : " You'll g t just what I assess, and 
nothing more." " Gentlemen of the railroad rapacity, you 
seem to have much time to devote to reconnoitre, and thus 
display your consequential ignoramus physics to my disgust, 
and contempt and scorn, upon my land that you havo 



112 

illegally robbed me of, making me poor indeed." Upon this 
Botlrwell grabs my arm, shaking mo as a dog would a wood- 
chuck, saying : " You stop your blab, or I'll put you in the 
lock-up forthwith," still shaking. "You insignificant, trespass- 
ing cur, take your hands off of me." Mr. Morse (colored 
man), working in agony at the sight of the beastly proceed- 
ing : " In God's time, for this assault you will be held 
amenable." Every man in broad grin at Bothwell's doings 
spurs him on. He grips and shakes vigorously. " We have 
heard the last of your blab on the railroad, we are gon', too. 
And you remember, if you" — " Take your hands off of me" — 
" begin to speak of this affair any way I'll have you in the 
lockup. Understand me, one time more ivill put you in the 
lock-up." Bothwell letting go of my arm as the men were 
on and could not see him, said railroad horde going to 
my further mowing returned with evident satisfaction at 
their conclusions. I said : " You left your two-legged dog 
here while you viewed my land in your custody, which is as 
a sinking fund to make you wealthy, and have ease and hap- 
piness, and to liquidate the rich abuudance which my land is 
productive of to you. The widow's mite would not be given 
me by your bastard souls." Bothwell, grabbing again (Dea- 
con Thurston in great glee as well as twelve-year, more or 
less, church-moiled Augustus Smith): "You have got to 
go into the lock-up !" " Bothwell, if there is an ourang on 
God's footstool that knows as little as you, I think Barnum 
must have him. I'll write forthwith and see if Barnum will 
give you his place, and thus raise stnne honest money for 
you !" Langhiug he goes on with his gang. 

Reader, there are not words enough in the English vo- 
cabulary to express my feelings of contempt towavd those 
deacons, church members, friends and members with whom my 
hard earnings had contributed for the support and spread of 
the gospel at home and abroad ; men who had always, since 
their residence in town, (God be praised, they are not natives) 
never known me to be anything but one of the mo t 
straightforward, unimpeachable females on earth, and they, 
in their dollar rapacity, are ready to sink me in contunu J y 
and shame, to cover their illegal traffic. At my cottag ) 



113 

house, for in no other place on earth is such hallowed, griof • 
stricken association, and in no place under heaven could I 
stay but there ; where I see my darling boys in every room, 
constantly loving, soothing, bearing me up with their angel 
whispers. I bathe in arnica Both well's grip plainly to be seen, 
my frame in agony, physically and mentally, and I cry in 
anguish, " where art thou, oh God of justice, whore?" it's 
enough to blind the strongest faith, to see such iniquity pre- 
vail. I only take a remedial composition, No. 6, and retire 
before dark. In the morning I rise, sore from Bothwell's 
rough handling and my hard labor. It is the day ap- 
pointed to be in Worcester about my monument. I am off. 
Next day it rains. I rest on my couch, glad indeed for the 
chance to lie abed all day, more or less. 

Kev. Mr. Murray's argument on this last point is mine also. 

In Hammersfield churchyard, Suffolk, on Robert Crytoft, 
obit. 1810, aged 90 r 

As I walked by myself, I talked to myself, 

And this myself said to me : 
Look to thyself, and take care of thyself, 

For nobody cares for thee. 

Monday, Sept 10th, business is progressing like a weaver's 
shuttle. Thursday four men, yoke of cattle and horse will 
begin to bring to pass my plans for digging cellar under L, 
laying wall first from the garden lot to cemetery. Brother 
tells me bloat Bates' brother is dead, relating when he saw 
him last, and where, and what doing, etc. Another telling 
still more. The town having been blest with the absence of 
that posterity as soon as freedom from parental authority 
would permit — the father dying with apoplexy. The 
mother saying North Brookfield was not large enough for her 
children's progress, &.c. The mother's mind is much like 
glassware, and the family are noted for great representations 
by all. In J. Duncan's words, " they have more wind than 
brains." 

We all present, telling some happy reminiscense (that is 
laughable), I brought up the rear by saviug : Whereas, 
if it could please Almighty God to remove hence T. C. 
Bates at this time with his brother, the devil would have a 



114 

grand span to hitch np when starting on one of his exploring 
expeditions, "seeking whom he may devour.*' 

I imagine my readers calling for another epitaph. 

An epitaph in a churchyard in Seven Oaks, Kent, 

England : 

" Here lies old 33 percent., 
The more he made the more he lent, 
The more he got the more he craved, 
The more he made the more he shaved, 
Great God, can such a soul be saved?" 

September 10th, 1S77. Robert Morse is trimming my 
apple trees in front the old homestead — every branch thereof 
dear to me, because they are of my father's planting. 
"An Ethiopian could change his skin, and a leopard his 
spots," as easy as it would be for me to do the same labor 
anywhere else that I can and have performed upon this my 
once seven and a-half acres of land, which that Bates & 
Bachellor Railroad have so hideously ruined for my pur- 
poses long since planned. And the slavish labor at my 
Hill residence, to bring in repairs after nearly seven years' 
renting to Tom, Dick and Harry. But that tomb in the gar- 
den containing my once husband's first wife and child, and 
our four darling toys. That house and barn, those grape vines 
and valuable fruit trees, with their sacred associations, have 
ever spurred (as Dr. Porter said in his certificate of recom- 
mendation, which I would here insert, but it is in the cottage 
house) my indomitable courage on to repair and keep rev- 
erently every token of the above association ; safely guarding 
every point from the encroachment of the vandals, which in 
our midst so abound. Still, having sympathy for their needs 
and giving of my mite as I could, since the ball club rap, 
my income has been too small for necessary needs, and thus 
avoid consuming my real estate. Thus, I was laboring with 
my might, while I was in school, summer and winter, 
private school spring and fall. My two years' and more 
feeble health (after ball blow). My land was neglected, 
only selling its products at standing prices; my purposes, 
long since planned, are being at this time completed; 
not being in public school sinco " said blow;" and normal 



115 

teacher being sought — brains and adaptation not qualities 
requisite ; for most of the committee are so ignorant, who 
employ them, and have charge of our schools, and our school 
mediocrity is apparent as noonday. 

Thirty years since, North Brookfield, Massachusetts, 
was the highest type of morality, virtue and educating 
power of any town within the radius of twenty miles ; and 
it has been my opinion, well grounded with careful knowl- 
edge, that with the number of her inhabitants, her equal is 
not to be found, in my knowledge, east of the Alleghany 
mountains, of being the reverse of the above statement* at 
this date ; and, it shocks my inmost soul to see its depravity, 
and also the ignorance and official barbarity which charac- 
terize those who happen to hold office — many of said offices 
being filled with those depraved, low minds, just a grade 
higher than the wolf and swine. Notwithstanding the 
great rush to get the almighty dollar, there has been 
reported one minister of the gospel certain, and maybe 
two, declined a call to the " Union Congregational Church, 
because of its querulous spirit, of which church I was mem- 
ber ; said church I have not entered since March 1st, Sab- 
bath communion, 1872 ; stating, on leaving said chur< h, \o 
Charles Underwood and others, I never should darken the 
doors thereof again, till Freman Walker, Samuel Skerry 
and some others were disciplined according to Congrega- 
tional usages, in their fabricating testimony against me, etc. 
The very church I labored day and night, working night 
after night, without laying mj" head on a pillow, making pants 
and dresses — everything to aid, support for said society; 
waiting upon and providing for sewing circles from fifty to 
eighty, and for Sabbath School class, parties, &c, as my 
husband would not permit me the use of his means for 
such purposes. Thus I labored, thinking it was my duty. 
Said sewiug circle's large ledger book was thus earned, and 
presented to said body while secretary and treasurer, 1857, 
'8 and '9. Mrs. Amasa Walker requesting me, on presenta- 
tion, to write m} r name, &c, within, which I did ; and they 
must constantly be reminded of me, unless they have cut it 
out. 



116 

And the citizens, well knowing I could command and 
effect the establishment of a private high school, and thus 
my work of enlarging my house and making preparation for 
to keep my hired man in attendance the year round. Mr. 
Haston assists me to-day, and I, reckless of my life, 
worked with said man to put into the barn this very day, 
more than ten hundred of rowen cut Friday previous. Mr. 
Quigley, a worthy, respected man, came into my yard, 
speaking of the immense second crop of rowen on the Hill 
plot, and of my great improvements made from time to 
time. 

September 11th. — I cau't delve in labor to day. The 
couch only is a fit place for me. That is Robert's step; 
faithful of the faithful, his tools are at father's house. I. 
must bestir myself. I'll not stop for breakfast, but hasten 
clown and have Robert remove those broken apple tree 
limbs (l>.oken off by ice and wind last winter), as they are 
and have been a terrible eye-sore to me (and it's probable 
the funeral of the above mentioned Bates will be to-day), 
and the rough look of those trees shall not mar the prospect 
of any in said procession in their great display, if it's in my 
power to remove them. I am on the ground already, the axe 
is wielding, bringing about my purposes. 

I don't see my brother; have you. Robert? Perhaps he 
is butcln'ring this morning ; I will go and see ; I find him in 
the valley of despair. No fire — I set myself to work; 
brother is clearly discouraged, because he has taken the nom- 
inal pittance granted him for his land taken, and would not 
have complied, had it not been owing to his counsel, etc. 
Just say to the railroad lawyer you are emplo} r ing : "Would 
to Heaven I could here state the way they have managed, 
but I am going to wait a little longer ; each time of action 
shall be set forth with perfect accuracy." It is high time 
that this court farce should be ended! Money instead of 
justice is on the throne ! 

I got his breakfast, and tried to rouse him with my vig- 
orous talk, etc., telling him I shall cause the banks of New 
England to smash when my case has a legal adjudication, &c. 
Then I'll fix up and make great display. As those who have 



117 

you now cribbed as well as said railroad, (hey not being 
able to circumnavigate jour youngest bister yet, with all 
their bought in influences. After breakfast 1 aw hard at 
work gathering up boughs, etc. It's nearly noon. It has 
just come into my mind that both outside doors and some 
windows are open in my cottage. Wo are holding the lad- 
der to the elm in front of father's house, while Robert 
stands upon it on the wall ; I am in terror, fearing lie will fall. 
The branches are oil'; I go for bed cord. 1 go to the Louse 
for my shawl, &c. ; as I came oil* those huge door stones, J. 
Duncan turns his horse right upon me with a sudden jerk ; 
I spring back. " You vilest of the vile, dare thus to intrude 
upou me as if in mockery to make me move for you, you de- 
praved of all depravity !" Duncan, getting out, handing the 
reins to a bo} T with him, boy going back towards the village, 
Duncan crossing to my bars, front of the house (as the pro- 
file within will show the reader), takes hold of the posts and 
gives them a shake as if to see their strength, &c. "You 
worse than murderer, you have been told not to trespass 
upon my premises." He looks at me with a vile smirk that 
only his mouth and eyes can give — said senses are fearfully 
vile, in 'their expression in their best state. I step into the 
door, and call the lady to look at J. Duncan, the monster of 
monsters, who used my name to get his insuiauee, saying I 
set fire to his building, that his jealous crazed wife and tamily 
had been devising to bring about for years. I have heard 
their threats hundreds of times in her jealous frenzy, wishing 
the same time every painted-faced widow could be in the 
midst, etc. The lady looked as Duncan was at the other 
bar posts with his hand upon them. I say, " See his vile 
face." 

Said building being under an insurance blanket for $2,000, 
more or less, above any purchasers price would have paid, 
&c. Mrs. Duncan sending her sons and daughters there in 
ways various, to watch their father and the " widders"; and 
scores of times I have heard from her lips, as well as G. 
Dale, who figured with whispering voice, telling the story 
they had made up and learned parrot like. Having 
previously seen in my counsel employed suspicious manage- 



118 

mcnt, I went to P. Emory Aldrich (now judge), to take my 
case, telling him so and so. Said Honorable duly saw said V., 
stating my desire, &c. Said V. replied to the Honorable 
that there had been a misunderstanding between Mrs. H. 
and himself — he still retained the case and should and did. 
And my submitting, when I ought to have resisted, caused me, 
I believe, to lose thousands upon thousands, which, instead of 
the small pittance given me, would have been decreed me had 
said Honorable managed my case. Duncan's son Charles 
has been established in different business with his father's 
money, and four times failed, at the right time, as report has 
it, Drury and J. E. Porter, and others, losing from $300, 
$1,000, §1,500, and so on. The last development set forth 
in our midst, I heard Osty Hebard relating. Said Duncan 
would rent weakly carriages, and some accident would befall 
e'er they were returned to the stable, for which he would get 
fabulous prices (considering), &c. The carriage repairer and 
dealer having had fallen out one time, said repairer refusing 
to bill in repairs, the certain repairs mentioned many times 
before, saying he drew pay enough on that hole for a dozen 
carriages. Said Duncan has a son Wendsl, and Frank, that 
will till the places of the two older members well, if nothing 
happens to them. 

Reader, I will here say, at that court in Worcester, money, 
instead of truth or law, or evidence, was on the throne, as 
everything under heaven was done to cover the guilt}' party, 
and kill the innocent. Report has it, money buried the 
criminal, and the ladies that Mrs. D. had wanted to put the 
fagots about and see the grease fry out of, could be with her, 
as never before, and manj r others with Duncan ready for a 
time, and when she would at home demur, as listening ears 
have told, he would say " you can't get up another court." 
I hasten homewards for bed cord, and to shut up my house. 

I have all, and lunched, and some for Robert, locked my 
door and off ; ere I gel out of my yard, I see a procession ; 
I go back ; seat myself in the parlor, at the east window — 
the only one open in the house — in arm chair ; as I looked 
up bloat Bates was looking down on Eae, looking like a 
double sunflower, and no more sad, notwithstanding the 



119 

sceno. Seeiug my neighbor in sight that I had been in the 
habit of speaking to, I addressed her, " You see the g trn- 
blers' display," etc. Such scenes affect me just as John B. 
Gough views those scenes since the burial of his mother. 
Waiting till time for them to reach the yard, I started 
again, coming out of my gate, the omnibus approaching to 
bring back masons; I waited for it to pass on; and the 
retinue gone, T make another start, saying, a perfect type of 
Bates' hinderance, from the time he gained monopoly of the 
rambling crew in the big shop. On reaching my first mow- 
ing, I»saw my man had fallen a large walnut tree, and was 
trimming, As my order, as to the butt, had not been given, 
I called him, and told him to leave the butt its full length 
for the saw mil. Robert not noticing, I raised my voice in 
repetition. I then passed where we were, to be back to the 
elm tree ; two horses were hitched at my bars where I enter, 
the omnibus being between said carriages and father's house. 
I turned sideways to pass through, — I could not have gone 
abreast without rubbing my clothes on the wheel, — saying at 
the same time to omnibus driver: "Please unhitch those horses 
from my bars; I wish to pass through, and more, a gambler's 
horse cannot be hitched to my bars." The driver thought 

it "d n mean if a horse at a funeral could not be hitched 

there." I said : "You please attend to this forthwith ; cir- 
cumstances alter cases ; I refuse no one the privilege, except 
those who have to me committed the unpardonable sin." 
Willie Stoddard, an epileptic, forthwith commenced damn- 
ing me. I remarked : "Yon are a precocious nephew," at 
the same time untying the horse, not moving the horse, at 
the post where I pass between the post and wall, said driver 
having the other horse pushed back ; I passed back the 
same as I had advanced, stepping upon ends of bars beyond 
the post on to a four feet wall, walking some six or eight feet 
before I could get down, as the branches trimmed from said 
tree were between the wall and the tree. 

As I was climbing down, I saw two other carriages at my 
other bars ; I called to them, saying : " Gambler Bates' 
horses cannot be tied to my property." Parties not noticing, 
I spoke loud to be heard, and none too loud for six rods' 



120 

hearing; they saw me, and grinned, &c. I got down; in 
stepping down, I stepped just the right way to bring that 
hard, painful sensation about my heart which, all who know 
me at home have heard it described, my hand upon the 
same as it were to keep it within. Willie ordering those 
horses tied back with boisterous voice, I going at or near a pile 
of trimmed branches I was going to pile for sale, wheu 
Bothwell's voice was loud, yes, yelling, "Let those horses 
be, Miss Hill, don't you ;" Bothwell running, looking like an 
escaping lunatic, white apron and gloves and black elsewhere. 
Willie informing him of my ugliness, he says : " Miss Hill, 
don't you untie these horses again." " I shall, sir ; a gam- 
bler's funeral horse cannot be hitched to my bars." Both- 
well sprang over the wall like a hound, running to me, grab- 
bing me, saying : "You have got to go to the lock-up", calling 
Ralph Bartlett and another smaller boy to let down the bars, 
and the same time shouting for a team to be brought to him 
to carry Miss Hill to the lock-up ; and I tried my best to get 
from the foul fiend, calling my mau. Bothwell threw me 
upon the ground, resting his knee upon the right side of my 
bowels and hip, hurting me so badly I screeched with 
agony, he throwing his right leg over upon my left leg and 
ancle, grazing the skin six to ten inches. Bothwell shouting 
to the Furnace boy to come and hold me, also to omnibus 
driver ; I commanding them not to enter upon my land, as 
Bothwell was violating the statutes, and disturbing the 
peace ; and then he, for the first time, said to me, "I arrest 
you for disturbing the peace," the Furnace and Bartlett boy 
roaring with laughter, and Willie Stoddard also. The said 
three above mentioned carried me and threw me into a 
wagon like a beast, Bothwell grabbing both my wrists in one 
hand and at the shoulder pit with the other ; when he fast- 
ened hands upon me, neither hand did I have till alter I was 
thrust in the felon's cell, in the presence of that vile North 
Brookfield Eing posse, who were having a jubilee, never 
equalled among savages. My nephew, Willie Stoddard, fol- 
lowing in the advance crowd, " That's good, Bothwell, keep 
her there; don't let her out at all," &c. The chill of the cell 
(it being a very warm day, and I in thin three thickness of 



121 

cambric-dress) soon caused me to shake as with the ague ; I 
demanded to be let out ; I had forbidden Bothwell thrusting 
me in there ; I resisted in the power of my might. When 
Bothwell locked me in the cell, he says to me : " I've got 
you where I want you, and every man, woman, and child in 
the town will be glad to hear you are in the lock-up ; you 
remember I told you just once more, and I'll lock you up." 
" Bothwell, I am not here a criminal, a criminal there, 
nothing else to you but criminal. You will suffer for this 
false imprisonment." 

Bothwell : " Suffer for this false imprisonment. I shall be 
doubly paid for putting you in." " Bothwell, I wain you to 
be careful of what you say to me in this felon's cell, for God 
and His angels are witnesses of your ±alse imprisonment of 
me in this loathsome hole ; your every expression I shall 
cause to be printed, the full account of which shall be 
spread as far as any act ever done in Massachusetts." B. : 
" Now I tell you, Miss Hill, do you dry up. If I hear another 
word about printing, d — n ye, I'll put the gag on and the 
handcuffs." Hundreds were without the cell. I screeched 
for to be let out, as it was endangering my life to be in 
there. Bothwell says, " Dry up ; I'll have the gag on you ; 
who cares for your life ? Everybody will be glad to have 
you die," &c. Bothwell going out, my brother from the 
homestead came to him and demanded my release. "You 
have no right nor reason to imprison my sister. I demand 
her release." Bothwell, grabbing his collar, said : " You 
say another word, and I'll put you in the other one. Then 
two cells will be filled." I begged of my brother to go home, 
thanking him for his good purpose. " Bothwell longs to 
get you in the cell, you well know. He knows you have been 
paid by the railroad, &c. Bothwell is after money, or I 
should not be here." He still demanding my release, I said : 
" Go home ; don't let Bothwell get your money. Bemember, 
Moses, what Mr. Leach says about Bothwell, deficient some 
$700 to $300 in some store, for which no account can be ren- 
dered. Bemember Leach says he would not trust him long 
enough to turn round, and every word of Leach is truth. 
Don't let Bothwell get your money." 



122 

The two-legged bloodhounds gathered thick and fast. 
The boy who stole my watch shouted : " You are looked up 
iustead of me." Sherman soon appearing that had my hay, 
not purposing to pay for it before he cut it, as I can plainly 
prove, laughing, running out his tongue, being of fearful 
phisiognumy by nature ; his son's mouth also stretched 
with laughter. One-third of that crowd would have been 
glad to have shouted long and loud. There were boys and 
girls, who had been my scholars, in tears falling fast. But 
there were young men of the Christian Association, such as 
Frank Bartlett, George Lincoln, as they were looking in the 
cell, and others, who would have stayed me in there till I 
died before any effort of theirs, I fully believe, because I 
would not countenance the fraud of their proceedings. 

In vain I called for help to release me from my false im- 
prisonment. First, I had not committed any offence but 
what was my legal right; secondly, I was upon my own land 
in performance of my urgent necessary labor, and was being 
stopped in the performance thereof by said crowd, who had 
halted there purposely (a plot evidently arranged by the 
railroad men, J. Duncan and masons, before knowing I was 
working there). Had it not been thus, all the teams at 
that parade (for such only could it truthfully be called) could 
have been tied to the posts owned by the town for that pur- 
pose. And so far as rnj'self was concerned, I should have 
as soon stooped and paid obeisance to' a drove of hogs, my 
sensitive nature having been previously trampled and out- 
raged in the most atrocious manner by said Bates and 
Duncan, both those parties having been forbidden, long 
before this, ever to speak to me or step upon my real 
estate of which I am legally seized, or lay hands upon its 
boundary of which I am entitled. I will say here, for the 
appalling, ignominious crime which said James Duncau had 
committed against me, the prison walls would be his boun- 
dary if it were not for his money shielding him ; and his 
thousands have been in part gained through dishonest 
traffic. 

The last time Bates spoke to me, except the 27th of May 
alluded to, he told me the " commissioners had offered me ten 



123 

times as much as my land was worth, but you want to light, 
and fight yon will, till you won't have a cent to buy grub 
with." That Bates, who has through the violations of the 
statutes, taken my property, of great value to me, and thus 
making said property a sinking fund for his wealth and a few 
others. Still defiantly taking possession of my entrance upon 
my land, still making me extra steps and renewed lacerations 
of my sensitive nature ; and more still he has done his ut- 
most to prevent my reporting for papers, &c. — and we never 
speak. But, readers, you see, he and Duncan are going to 
do with my property as they wish — law or no law. We are 
making the money, which will save our necks from any evil 
we may do, even if the defendant was spotless of sin, as 
the blood of the Lamb. Back to the felon's cell, in which I 
am incarcerated by ruffianly design of long purpose in some 
way or other, to end me, as my knowledge of their illegal 
proceedings, scrutiny of which is dangerous to their pockets 
and official wires, if, perchance, law should ever be vindi- 
cated. I still demanded my release, as my situation was 
such at that time, doubly imperilling my health, if not 
speedy death. Bothwell replying, " Nobody cares whether 
you are sick, die, or not." 

" What Christians you are in this midst. Bothwell, remem- 
ber every word ; it's truth shall be in print." Bothwell : " I 
thought you were just going to die here." "Perchance my 
life may be prolonged, sir, to spread this appalling crime you 
are committing from pole to pole. And the citizens of this 
town are permitting me to remain in this filthy cell. There 
are meeting houses within a stone's throw, and churchmen 
constantly passing, knowing I am here without warrant, with- 
out crime." Willie Stoddard shouting, " Don't you let her 
out ; keep her there," Sec. Charles Stoddard and some others 
looking into the cell, I asked them to go to Father Walsh, and 
tell him the proceedings. Some one says, "Write and I will 
carry it," Arc. ; Bothwell saying, "It is high time you had a 
Catholic praying for you." " I certainly shall ask no one to 
pray for me — that is my prerogative you have no power 
over, nor any one else." Bothwell passed out, soon return- 
ing with ink and paper, saying, " Write to your priest." 



124 

Father Walsh, I have reason to believe, from what I have 
seen of him, is a man of unimpeachable character. Would 
to God Ave had more in our midst. 

I wrote my note, said Charles Stoddard carrying it and 
bringing back a verbal reply. My brother and another man, 
in a carriage, came and demanded my release from that cell, 
in the name of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. .Both- 
well told him if he repeated it he would put him in the lock- 
up. The man with my brother, getting out of the carriage, 
demanded my release also, Bothwell threatening him with a 
lodging in the lock-up too. Readers, do you see how that 
ring were playing their cards? I shouted to my brother 
from the cell, in my utmost screech, " Moses, I beseech of 
you go home — I thank you, I thank you — you cannot effect 
anything ; don't stay any longer ; Bothwell will have you 
and 3'oar money if you are thrust into the cell," &c. Both- 
well comes in, saying, " I'm going to gag you. The crowd 
told me to go the whole figure, now I have got you." " You 
can put your gag on at the earliest moment you choose. 
But, sir, God's time for your reward, for this illegal bru- 
tality, will come. Not a slave driver in the Southern Con- 
federacy ever committed so heinous a crime as this } T ou and 
your ring are committing against me, without a cause, but 
a diabolical plot of Duncan, Bates, masons and the rail- 
road thieves. I ought to have inserted that Bothwell built 
a fire in the stove at the time of bringing paper and ink, let- 
ting me out of the cell into the larger room, where I told all 
the children to remember me there in that cell without crime 
or cause. Innocent like Christ, who was crucified by a simi- 
lar mob, and as Christ was innocent, even so am I. Telling 
them to remember just how I looked, what I said, and to be 
telling the same in every different place they are in, that this 
outrage may spread from pole to pole. " Remember, children, 
what I say to you here in this felon's cell, tell it to your 
fathers, and to your children, and your children's children 
to the third and fourth generations." Bothwell coming in, 
telling me to " dry up, or you will go back to narrower quar- 
ters." My brother at the window in tears, demanding again 
my release. Bothwell rushing for him, the crowd closed 



125 

around him, and thus tliat foul fiend was kept at bay, from 
putting his paws upon my brother. I said, " Do go home, 
let not that vile devil put his paw on you again." Others 
seeing my earnest desire, urged him also. Readers, my 
brother had not the force to do what he demanded. Had 
I been in my brother's place, and my brother in the cell, 
brought there for the same reason, without warrant, without 
cause ! ! ! female, as I am, I should not have left that spot 
without his release, and had I been thwarted (as my brother) 
then and there, that spot would have been made memorable. 
For Both well, or I, would have been numbered with the con- 
gregation of the dead. But that mysterious Providence of 
Almighty God, made me the victim of these money crazed 
devils, as Christ was victimized hundreds of years ago. 
There are so few men to be found to-day that dare oppose 
or espouse any cause if it is going to affect their purse to 
disadvantage, no matter how just, unless said cause can make 
a party and give them an office. 

And, reader, where, oh where can be found one who 
would not equal contemptible Peter, who denied his Master, 
ere the cock crew thrice, &c. 

The street lamps are burning. In the felon's cell, Both well 
brings in a soot black lantern and stands it upon the floor, 

and says to me "You keep your d d blab goirjg and keep 

this mob here, or ycu'd been over to Jenks and home." 
" Over to Jenks, what do you mean by that" ? Both well : " Dry 
up, you will be in the narrow corner. Not another word." 
So low and menacing, the fiend from the lower regions {they 
tell about) must have stood aghast at thus being excelled. 
Charles Stoddard, nodding me to the window, in low tone 
tells me, "Don't speak, they are going to let you out v. hen 
the stores, &c., are shut up." Gladly indeed, my tongue was 
silent. Bothwell going in at spaces between the cells, I 
will here soy during the afternoon of my imprisonment, 
some prominent churchmen and women looked on to rest, 
and have joy of the same, 1 suppose — such as Thomas Suell, 
Rev. Hewes, Deacon Nutting (known as key-hole Nutting), 
said Deacon being the one who, through said key-hole, crimi- 
nated Rev. Waldo with Persis Tuttle, of the Union Congre- 



12G 

gational Church notoriety, bringing contumely upon the 
ministry forever, bonum magnum Nye and daughter, she 
being very diminutive as well as her father in stature, and far 
more diminutive both of them in the attribute that is of God. 
Such expressed eyes as she glanced into the cell, spoke .so 
loud her thoughts, and it brought her vividly before me. in 
the school room (primary department, none other, and for 
this never had a certificate or examination; her own words to 
me), inflicting blows upon a fat sunny face (Frank De 
Land), with such velocity as to leave visible marks for 
more than a week, the marks of her fingers. Mrs. De Land 
has told that wrong to me, scores of times, and Mary Nye 
her sister ; report has it, the ruler is still to be seen with 
blood and hair dried upon it, with which she too inflicted 
blows upon the head of a helpless boy, the boy grabbing the 
ruler and escaping the school-room with the same. 

The last act was committed in District No. 1, North 
Brookfield, Mass., and the first one in No. 2. About 
10 p. m. the streets are clear ; previously no one in 
sight. G. C. Lincoln passes, halts, does not come up to the 
window, for there I stood in the dark ; he soon moves, for 
fifteen rods more will bring him in Dr. Tyler's office, where 
the masons can secrete (the doctor having passed the cell in 
the road, looking straight to his furious steed). 

All is quiet in front of the cell. Notorious John Hebard 
and Bothwell came into the cell, Both well having a blanket 
and Hebard a buffalo, both in broad laugh, Bothwell saying, 
" knowing you are a clean devil, I bring you a clean 

buffalo." Hebard : " Ha ! he did this d d nice." I 

screeched as loud as my voice could ring for help. "You 
cannot leave me thus endangered, without defence, with 
these two men, and Hebard's known additional trait. I said 
to Hebard, " I am not in this felon's cell as a criminal, but 
by the malicious designs of men." " That's a d — n great 
get up. I have come in here purpose to see you here, that 
I can — ha ! ha ! and tell of you wherever I am." " Tell, sir, 
of my innocence, — of this fearful, loathsome den." Hebard : 
" God, you are d d innocent." " Sir, if justice was 



127 

meted out to you, as report Las it, heaven is my witness (I 
know nothing of your guilt but your presence), you, sir, with 
said milliner, as current report has it, would long since be 
in prison Trom violation of God's law as well as man's." 
Hebard: "Well, you would have been in hell with your 

d d back broke. I wish to God I could have the chance 

of breaking it and chucking you down." 

I still screech for help to rescue me from thieves saying, 
"Even as Christ hung upon the cross between two thieves 
eighteen hundred years ngo, to-night in the nineteenth cen- 
tury, I stand between two thieves as innocent of crime as 
that Saviour upon the cross. Bothwell coming back of meas 
you would drive a dumb beast into a stable, saying, " You go 
into your bed." " You are not goiug to shut me in that cell 
tonight? I must go home." Bothwell: "You won't go home." 
" I tell you, sir, the foul fiend from the bottomless pit would 
not be so insolent and audacious. You have me Here with- 
out warrant, without cause, and I demand you no longer 
break the law of God and man." Bothwell takes out a 
paper, saying it's a warrant and he will read it \l I say. 
" When was it made out ? " " This evening." " What is it 
made out for?" Bothwell: "For your disturbing the 
peace." " It is you, and you alone, with your called com- 
rades, that have disturbed the peace, because I did not 
surrender my property, my individuality, seating myself in 
the imbecile's chair for you to move, and step upon as the 
circumstances of the ring may demand." Hebard: "You're 
a d — d good horse block." Bothwell : " 1 tell you, go in that 
ceD." " I go, sir, if you dare drive me in there." Both- 
well : " D — n you, I do dare — " I advancing in the door of 
the cell, when both men put their hands with force upon 
iny back, sending me to the further end of the cell. The 
cell is locked. Hebard : " Pleasant dreams all night — it's 
too d — d good a sight to leave." Both, in high glee, gone 
out. 

Soon Bothwell comes in, and asks me if I want anything 
to eat — a cup of tea? " I wish, sir, to go home, and change 
my clothes, and rest upon my own clean couch." " You 



128 

won't ; say, do you want a cup of tea?" "No ; I wish some ice 
water." " You can't have it. I'll get you a cup of tea" — at the 
same time shuts the sky-light. I beg of him not to, in vain. 
He is out — gone. My throat at that moment was parching. 
Since my diphtheria sickness, in 1S64, I have suffered -with 
dry mouth and throat ; and, having talked much, and some 
of the time loud, in the cell, to make those without hear me, 
had added to my suffering thirst. Often in my rheumatic 
sickness, there is no moisture in my tongue, and in my best 
health, I am often obliged to drink with every mouthful of 
food. Imagine me without food or drink, but one glass of 
water since 11 o'clock, a. m. My sufferings from thirst alone, 
were fearful. I stood in the felon's cell, both hands on the 
middle bar, leaning first one shoulder then the other, against 
the bars — the rheumatic pains sharp and pieroing — watch- 
ing the dim light from the street lamp ; and, as the town 
clock struck from time to time, the only society except for 
Duncan and Hebard stable, and when hearing parties in 
said place. Also, as I thought, in BurrhTs furniture estab- 
lishment, Burrill and Charles Duncan seeing me many times 
in the cell, Burrill's daughter having been my scholar, 
Charles Duncan having upon his parlor table a valuable 
Bible given him by Sabbath School, in 186G, I should think, 
towards which. I gave seventy-five cents of earnings sewing 
that I could not earn three cents per hour, and my son 
Lloyd contributing twenty-five cents towards the same, his 
earned equally laboriously. You will remember, readers, 
my saying my husband opposed me in this, and no aid 
could I have from him. And I thought I was right, and 
doing God's will, Lloyd helping with willing alacrity, giving 
of his hard earnings as freely as water runs down hill. Thus 
those very churchmen were walking by without one word 
said for my relief, but were, without doubt, as glad as He- 
bard and Both well, but had more sense than to make them- 
selves hideous. Perchance, a human soul within the cell 
might bear witness. About 2 o'clock in the morning my 
thirst and suffering was so great that it seemed as if death 
would end my sufferings before daybreak. On the first step 
upon the walk in front of the cell was a man with a lantern. 



129 

I tried to call, but I could not speak loud. My hand had 
not let go its grip upon the iron bar, and I believe had 
death come in that awful hour, my hand would have been 
clinched tight to the bar. About 5 a.m., Bothwell came in 
and unlocked the cell, saying, "Go home." I could not move 
but with the greatest effort, Bothwell saying, " I will get a 
team for you." I said : " No, walking will be best," he giving 
me his arm for support ; wo thus left that awful 
stench cell. On the street we met Burnett and across the 
street was Kibby. I have omitted one important point. 
Morse, my man, came to the cell in the evening, bringing me 
a shawl and the keys to my house. His agony was intense. 
Bothwell took the keys, saying he would put them in his 
watch pocket. Chas. Stoddard, being at the prison window 
at the time, told me I was going home. I did not object to 
his keeping my keys, aud when he left me next P. M., he said 
he was going after a cup of tea for me. I supposed 
he meant what he said. He did not return with the tea. 
My home was some fifty rods from the lock-up. On 
reaching home he unlocked the door ; I went in, and 
Bothwell returning. I passed up stairs, thinking for the 
first time of his (Ernest's) shawl, still on my shoulder. 
I opened my front door, calling him back to take the shawl. 
Bothwell came back saying : " I forgot to tell you J shall be 
down after you to go before Jenks ; you keep this shawl 
till all is finished up." " What, I can't go up ; you can't take 
me there, nor fool me any longer ; I have suffered enough, 
and I must take to my bed." Bothwell : " I'll come down 
toward night ; jou keep the shawl." " I'd rather you would 
take it now, as the smell of that loathsome cell is in my 
clothes. I shall go into the barn to remove them." Both- 
well said : "You keep the shawl," &c, and was gone. I 
go back to the kitchen, remove said clothes and take a 
regular bath in wormwood, my body and limbs a sight to 
behold from the bruises upon my bowels and hip ; his 
marks upon my arms, and my left limb spoke plainly of the 
fearful abuse I had received from his hands — assaults, and 
from his foot and knee. I have seen men throw down a 



130 

dumb beast, and not the brutality ed toward them as he 
dealt out to .me. 

In getting my clean apparel I fo d my $450, that was 
placed in that drawer, lying in full view — the $100 bill, $50, 
one package of $100 not broken op<m ; the $100 in $10 bills 
had been torn asunder and $70 taken. 

I had paid J. B. Lawrence & Co. $110 for a black walnut 
set, placed in my sleeping room, the week previous, taking 
only $100 from said package. Said money I had drawn 
from savings banks spoken of before, one of the firm of 
J. H. Clark's store in Worcester being witness to the same. 
Said money was to be used in making repairs, &c. Thus, 
my lock-up had cost me, by being stolen, $70, besides the 
unparalleled abuse and outrage of the law. 

Bothwell had my keys with him during the night. My 
doors had been open from 7 to 11 a. m. But it must be 
evident that any thief, to have entered in the morning, 
would not have divided the spoils. No, reader ; an old 
hand at the business performed that job, I think, in the 
night. " If Mrs. Hill misses it, we can say she has lost it," 
and so on — their old way of talking against truth, immu- 
table as God himself. I dressed for "Worcester instead of 
the bed, having the appearance of a corpse mangled by a 
ruffian, and breathing again as if in defiance of death. My 
brother's presence added force to the new lease of life. 
" Bring, Moses, the first instant you can, a team, and take 
me to Worcester." " I will do what I can." Off he goes. I 
bathe my limbs again in wormwood, my head, also my 
shoulders, and I am just barely able to move about. Time 
is money. He comes. I'm off; and in front of the home- 
stead we meet that wonderful nephew and sister of primary 
education, and teacher — all her knowledge being confined to 
North Brookfield's school and ball-room. Willie hastens to 
Bothwell, as report has it, and reports that Tyler was carry- 
ing Mrs. Hill off, &c. My brother, meeting a man with fleet 
horses and buggy, asked him to take me to Worcester ; said 
man was going to N. B. on business ; I turned, saying : 
" Whatever you ask to take me shall be paid." He told 
me, and I paid him. I had not been in his buggy but a 



131 

few minutes when I slept ; he held ine with his arm around 
me. I told him my short story in his buggy. He said : 
" Why wasn't that Bothwell killed, and stopped ? " " It, sir, 
would only have been justice." In about two and a half 
hours I was at Friendly Inn. I went (after eating some 
refreshments) into a lawyer's office, then to two other legal 
parties, showing my bruises, <fcc. 

The counsel did not comply with older wisdom and my 
wish, but so and so. I was too weak and suffering to argue, 
but had new distress at his not doing as required. And I 
believe the train from North Brookfield had a passenger 
that had informed said counsel of the breach in the law, &c, 
telling him to do his best for their protection by staving off, 
and the after proceedings proved it to a demonstration in 
my mind. Home again, so nice, so quiet and pure — and 
those little angel whispers, so sacred in this hour ; no mortal 
tongue can assuage grief like those angel boys. I bathe in 
wormwood, in clean apparel; my rich couch has my bruised 
form. 

This morning, about nine, I am at breakfast table. Both- 
well comes in. " I've come for you to go up to Jenks," &c. 
"I protest, sir." B. says : "You have got to go up," &c. 
"I go with } T ou only to avoid a scene. I protest against it, 
remember," <fcc. Bothwell appoints the time, 2 P. M. Leaves. 
Soon he returns, saying, "Jenks wants to go to the Democratic 
Convention, and he thinks you better have counsel and have 
it hushed up. No one shall come into his office except wit- 
ness," &o. Gone again. I am off again to Worcester for 
said counsel ; too weak to use my own judgment. He 
thinks so and so, "but you do as you please." I demand the 
action brought on my part. "Oh, that will keep as it is. And 
it will be kept from his handling." He takes fifteen dollars — 
will be up at ten o'clock a. m. to-morrow. My man is at the 
depot with carriage ; takes the legal man, brings him to my 
house. We drive to the grounds ; back to Jenks' office. 
Had it not been for Bothwell's promise that no one but so 
and so, I would not have appeared before Jenks any other 
way than to waive examination, knowing his eveiy trait as 
familiarly as the alphabet. A schoolmate boarding one 



132 

winter at his home, when teaching in our home district, 
18t57-8. But thus doomed to have lie upon lie, lie upon lie, 
to take me this way, that, and the other. Jenks' office was 
packed. J. Duncan with his vile, lusty face, with fiendish 
grin. I immediately explain his profile to said counsel. He 
withdraws suddenly, though his name was offered as a wit- 
ness. The imps of hell cannot exceed that man in lying, as 
he has falsified against me, and that lying to cover the vile 
life he has led. Many say, be careful, be careful, when I 
have been held as a States prison convibt without one parti- 
cle of anything to lay to my charge, but my knowing how 
his wife and he quarreled about women, and my living with 
them in the same house ; it could not well be otherwise — 
and family school teacher. What I have ever said I still say, 
it's God's truth, and the party who burned his building 
could have been proven plain as noonday in my opinion. 

Reader, this book is in part to speak of this in print to 
live when I am in the grave, as no justice was given me 
in court — this court costing me some $G00 more than I re- 
ceived back — and had it not been for a man on the jury from 
North Brookfield of Jane Dale and Duncan notoriety, the 
pittance allowed would have been more. 

Bad witness for Bothwell, &c, but a good one to spread a 
vile lie. Said Duncan and Bates were talking and laugh- 
ing uproariously during the time the farce court was pending 
in Chas. Duncan's store, Bates' brother not being under the 
sod tvvo days. 

Both well's testimony alone, every word he uttered, the 
way thereof misrepresenting, giving the lie to what ought to 
have been told in truth, and I tell it in truth. 

Hiram Bartlett making himself perfectly ridiculous, idiotic 
almost, in thus trying to injure me and help said Bothwell. 
The lawyer was unable to get one sentence from Bartlett. 
"He heard my voice three or four times, &c." Once he heard 

*' gambler," once " grave," once "d n." Not one sentence 

could be brought out. " He only knew I was disturbing the 
funeral, &c." Esq.: ""What else did you hear that made 

you know ? " B. : " Heard me say d n distinctly." Esq. : 

" You call that swearing ?" B. : " Yes, sir." Esq. : " That's 



133 

all? " B. • " Tes ; I could not distinguish ; I heard grave, 
clear." Esq. : " Then you think Mrs. Hill was swearing like 
a pirate ? " B. : " Yes." Esq. : " How long have you 
known Mrs. Hill? " B. : " Always." Esq. : " Did you ever 
hear her swear before ? " B. : " No, sir." Esq. : " Mrs. 
Hill was on her own land at the farm ?" B. : " Yes." Esq. : 

" You think ' gambler,' ' grave,' and ' d n ' were heard at 

different times, as you state, is enough for you to affirm she 
swore like a pirate?" B. : "Yes." Esq.: "Questioned 
every way and not une answer that could be made into tes- 
timony." Esq. says, " There is nothing more, sir, as you 
are evidently laboring under some infirmity — sickness or 
imbecility, or some perverse freak dethroning reason, judge, 
nothing more," &c. 

Beader, that man wanted a deed of my land, thus to secure 
me against J. Duncan's vile proceedings. I told B. if Duncan 
could get hold of my land through his rascality, I wished to 
see the performance, &c. Bartlett had an e} 7 e to the seven 
and a half acre plot, and could not get it. Bartlett had told 
me sundry things about those J. and C. Duncan's. I sum- 
moned him to court. In ten minutes after summons he 
was at my house, with his eyes glaring. " What did you 
summon me to court for ? " " To tell sir, that you rehearsed 
to me the other day." B. : "I shan't go one inch, and make 
me lose business." " You need not, sir, and you will 
please never speak to me again on earth. But ever remem- 
ber the hard work I have done for you in your poverty, and 
had it not been for my father's house, and Dr. Tyler's, and 
with m} r own timely aid, you would have been carrying a 
saw-horse and ax, instead of pulling teeth." And now for 
an incident of this H. P. Bartlett when a boy some four 
years of age. I was playing school in my father's great 
kitchen, my brother Albert and said Bartlett scholars. For 
seats my brother's little chair, a very large pumpkin, a \ery 
large, crooked neck squash. Calling the lads up to the desk 
to give me their names, Bartlett, the youngest, pushes ahead 
of Albert, rapidly saying, as if afraid he would not get his 
name in first : " Pierce Bartlett Hiram." Albert bursting 
out in a loud " ha, ha ! " Thus, some time before exercises 



134 

were in order, with book in hand H. P. B. rises, goes to Al- 
bert and demands, " Me have chair !" Albert says, " Why, 
I am oldest, Me have chair ! " I said, "Albert, let the moth- 
erless boy have the chair." Albert rose and sat on the 
pumpkin. Not one minute after H. P. B. was at that seat 
— " Me have pumpkin." Albert rose, laughingly, and sat on 
the squash, and with q-ick time H. P. B. : " Me have squash, 
too." Reader, the child is the father of the man. And the 
three words at different times may have something beside 
grammatical relation, &c. 

To show more fully some incidents in said Bartlett's life 
when in his teens. C. E. Jenks, now trial justice, by two 
recommendations is teaching school in District No. 1 in 
North Brookfield, Mass. In said school were children from 
the Bates, W. Hill, and Bartlett families. An insurrection 
rose in its midst, when Bates, said Bartlett and Hill, &c, 
levelled Charles E. Jenks, carrying him out of the school- 
room. Readers, you can well understand those three names 
above alluded to, who were going to have their say and 
way " fair or foul" !!! 

And it is just so yet * * * * * * 

The omnibus driver did his best for the trespassing 
criminals, but failed entirely of giving any testimony of any 
low remarks or illegal proceedings as alleged by the criminal 
officer who had caused this disgraceful public trial and 
false imprisonment of me (Elizabeth R. Hill). This crime 
of S. Bothwell was more damnable in my heart than murder. 
And his motive and all those concerned was and were to 
ruin my reputation, thus making me a public show, to sup- 
press my influence in vindicating the law and statute pro- 
ceedings in which I have been drawn by their illegal 
desires and proceedings as plaintiff, and they defendants. 

Henry Sampson seeing Bothwell's proceedings chanced to 
hear gambler, grave, &c, God and his angels, curse or damn. 
Eqs. D. did you hear anything else? I saw Bothwell, 
and imagined, &c. Sampson was very cute and very near a 
cypher. John Dewing alone giving any sensible sense and 
not one word to criminate. Bothwell's testimony was a 
fabrication of his own making, of which his whole soul 



.35 



teems with, I believe. Counsel asked the above witnesses 
how long they had known Mrs. Hill, &c ? Some all their 
lives, others thirty years or more. Counsel : Did you ever 
hear Mrs. Hill use profane or obscene language ? Witness : 
Never. Counsel : Mrs. Hill is a literary lady, so-called ? 
Witness : She writes for papers ; is a school teacher ; I 
don't know as she ever wrote a book. Counsel : Mrs. Hill is 
called literary ? Witness : She writes and teaches. Coun- 
sel : Don't you know her, and is she not known to have the 
knowledge and command of three or live times the vo- 
cabulary of words the best of us handle, and knows just 
where to use them ? Witness : I know she has knowledge. 

Not one witness corroborated Bothwell in his statement, 
&c. Many others in that procession have told the truth 
that I did not disturb by calling to the further bars not to 
hitch to the same as they were much nearer to me than 
Bothwell and heard nothing, and consider the treatment 
Bothwell gave me as uncalled for, cruel and outrageous. 

My only witness, Robert Morse. Counsel : You are un- 
der the employ of Mrs. E. R. Hill ? Witness : Yes, sir. 
Counsel : How long? Witness : I helped with Mrs. Ayres' 
span and mowing machine, &c, to get her hay the last of 
June. I have been working the past two weeks only draw- 
ing a few loads of coal as Mrs. Ayres wished during the 
time. Counsel : You were at work at the time Bothwell 
seized her on her own land in the performance of labor in 
which you had been engaged ? Witness : Yes sir. Counsel : 
How far off from Mrs. Hill? Witness: About ten rods. 
Counsel : Did Mrs. Hill do or say anything to disturb or 
annoy the solemnity of a funeral procession ? Witness : 
No, sir. Counsel : Was Mrs. Hill on her land when the 
procession passed ? Witness : Mrs Hill had been working 
there all the morning and had gone up home in haste to lock 
her doors and get a bed cord to tie back a tall elm tree to 
straighten it up, &c. Counsel : The funeral procession 
went to the churchyard while she was gone ? Witness : Yes, 
sir. Counsel : Was Mrs. Hill gone any longer than you ex- 
pected ? Witness : Yes, three times as long ; she said she 
was coming straight back, else I would not get through in front 



136 

of the house till she carne back, as Mrs. Hill was going to 
sort the limbs for sale herself. Counsel : Where did you 
first see Mrs. Hill when she did come back ? Witness : In 
the highway in front of where I was cutting a walnut tree. 
Counsel : State what she said, &c ? Witness : She told mo 
not to cut the butt of the trees at all, but come and help me 
tie back the tree as quick as you have the branches off. 
Counsel*: You had cut down a walnut tree during her ab- 
sence ? Witness : Yes, sir, and more too. Counsel : Where 
did Mrs. Hill go ? Witness : To that elm tree in her garden 
lot where she was piling up wood. Counsel : You had 
not started to go and tie the tree back? Witness : No, sir, 
I had not the limbs cut off. Counsel : Tell what you heard 
next ? Witness : I heard Mrs. Hill call me to come and 
help her. Counsel : I saw Bothwell and the omnibus driver 
carrying her out of her garden lot. Counsel : Did Mrs. 
Hill scream ? Witness : Yes, sir. Counsel : What did you 
hear her say ? Witness : She said, " God and his angels 
forbid such outrageous treatment. Bothwell, I forbid you 
carrying me off my l~nd ; you have no cause, no warrant ; a 
more damnable proceeding than this never blackened the 
pages of history." Counsel : Did you ever hear Mrs. Hill 
swear ? Witness : No, sir. Counsel : How is it about work- 
ing for her ? Witness : I never worked for anyone who 
treated me better ; prompt in paying my wages ; kind, and 
careful of my health, &c. Counsel : Did you see Mrs. Hill 
in the cell ? I carried her my shawl and her keys ; I saw 
all I could ; it was terrible to me. Counsel : Do you know 
she was imprisoned without law or cause ? Witness : I do. 

Mrs. Hill's Evidence. 

Counsel : Mrs. Hill, state your case in full ? Mrs. Hill : I 
was directing and working as usual, with Morse, my hired 
man, the day of the funeral alluded to. Hearing that it was 
to be that day, I made great exertion in work to remove 
brush into heaps and pack cut branches to give neatness, 
for perchance a stranger may be in the midst of the coming 
display, and hastening work I had long before desired done. 
I had no thought, nor passing notice of the proceeding (" it 



137 

was none of niy funerals"), but was accomplishing with my 
might, fearing my wood cutting, &c, would not be completed 
e'er my team for dragging stone, laying wall, &c, would 
need Morse in their aid, etc. ; I had not lost one moment, 
but to bring to pass, except to answer the profound queries 
of nephew Stoddard, &c, and I had silenced him in a mea- 
sure (as talking and physical labor are not unitable in my 
caliber), by informing him, that he should be my guardian, 
if I could be permitted to choose, &c, and then he could 
question and direct as " seemeth him best." When I came 
out of the house at the homestead, to go home for cord and 
shut my house, I should not have noticed who was in that 
team had Duncan not turned the horse in my face, com- 
pelling me to jump out of his way, &c. ; when dressed in 
farming gear it is my practice not to see or noiice passers 
by. Duncan's movement I have given before in this book, 
was pre-arranged. Bothwell's carrying me, &c, to the 
prisoner's cell, was planned and arranged to be executed in 
some way by said rings, &c, with as much deliberation as 
any plot of iniquity consummated since God made man! 
The previous mentioned acts, and the concluding one to 
be given, cannot help proving to the candid mind the 
iniquitous designs of those two legged, moral depraved, and 
money crazed species of manhood. I find I have omitted a 
prominent point. I solemnly declare that I did not speak 
in any way to disturb the funeral ; furthermore, had that 
procession been anything but outside show, they would not 
have seen me at all. I did not move a horse, nor put my 
hand upon horse or carriage ; I merely untied the hitching 
rein at the post, which is foot passage, between post and 
wall when not thus obstructed. I did not remove the rein 
from post hole. Omnibus driver having unhitched the horse 
at the other post, I leaving the post and going to the other. 
Stepping upon the ends of the bars up to the top of the wall, 
&c, then seeing my other bars being taken, I spoke, telling 
them not to hitch there ; for reasons before given ; they not 
noticing, I repeated louder, to be heard by the parties, and 
not loud enough to be heard by said procession in the grave 
yard. I had not, previously to the burial, nor since, stepped 



138 

toward, nor looked at said spot in said yard, though the 
most sacred of all places ; but I never knew of a public place 
but there was an avoidable spot to some one, and such spots 
to me I notice not, I turn from them, and turn away. The 
lies told of and about me in this affair are as foul as hell, 
and are a perfcet type of the character of those who pro- 
mulgate them, and they spread the same through impish 
maliciousness. 

Counsel argued the case ably, setting forth each testimony 
in its true light, the audience manifesting a slight applause 
by clapping and stamping, whereupon Bothwell rushed 
upon his feet with maniacal authority, saying, I command 
every one to leave the hall this minute — I command every 
one to leave this hall ! But the court objecting, Bothwell at 
the same time taking hold of one and another, pushing them 
along out of the hall — Jenks and counsel trying to stop him, 
saying he must not do this, the audience have done nothing 
to be driven from the hall— counsel declaring he will not be 
thus disturbed, &c. Bothwell gives in thus : You may stay 
'till there is another clap or stomp. If there is one stomp 
you shall every one leave the hall. Selah ! How would it 
have been if that applause had been for and as favoring 
his vile, worse than murderous proceedings? Can you 
imagine? 

The counsel goes on, makes out Bartlett imbecile or under 
some derangement, or he would not have thus shown to all 
such open, barefaced, incoherent words, without one con- 
necting word, thus hoping to criminate innocence. Though 
I should perhaps have said to Mrs., don't object &c. You 
all well know how keenly alive Mrs. Hill is to the least insult 
from Duncan since her court against him for slander, &c. 
And Bates, you well know their position, and when Mrs. 
Hill says bloat Bates she means bloat Bates. I never saw 
bloat Bates, but I know he is bloat Bates, for Mrs. Hill has 
thus affirmed. 

As for Bothwell's proceedings I shall say nothing, and I 
trust the judge will have nothing to lay to Mrs. Hill's charge. 
My mental agony and my paid counsel leaving Bothwell thus ! 
That treacherous falsifier ! worse than murderer ! not ana- 



139 

lyscd ! ! ! The chief actor and cause of this scene, as much 
as the devil presides for imps in the bottomless pit. Oh, oh, 
oh, ph! was my mental ejaculation. Jenks stammering worse 
than when I wrote his will (he once sent for mo at the 
school house about 2 r. M.; I immediately hastened to the 
rescue, as he was blue and thought he was going to die, etc., 
Wiii. "NY right witness and somebody else. He will have to 
make a new will as three or four are dead, else this secret 
would not be divulged here, saying), I guess as things are I 
must give Mrs. Hill $15 and costs. And, readers, that was 
said not because there was sin, but because he must do it to 
keep his office ! ! ! I appeal, and Jenks then says, you may 
go under $300 bonds. Such hideous mockery of justice ! 
That last insolence calmed me ; oh how calm I looked at 
those malefactors with as clear an eye of their diabolical 
determination to rob me of money, to crush me in spirit, to 
thus hold me forth to that or this blaspheming, taunting 
throng. A more ignominious set hell could not purge from 
its bowels. Bothwell, in glee-. Who will you have for 
bonds ? My brother would be bonds, you have a mortgage 
on your place, &c. (not covering one-third of it). I said, 
can't I give my own security ? Jenks : No. Counsel : I 
think you might let Mrs. Hill be her own security, as she 
owns property, pays taxes and always lived here. Jenks : 
That makes no difference. Another man came forward, 
worth his thousands : Jenks, don't your wife hold the deed 
of your property ? Yes ; but I am worth a good deal more 
than that, you know. Some parties, because they had not 
back-bone, like that contemptible " Peter '' and others, left. 
I looked round and said : The audience cannot fail to see 
this bend in this proceeding, and I will here ask in this way, 
if there is a man in this hall who holds real estate, free from 
incumbrance, of sufficient value to secure said bonds with 
my brother ; qualifications not publicly known, not much 
account anyway, nor likely to be, come and administer the 
cup of cold water, if such a man can or must be found ; no 
other will be admitted here; or else I shall have to be re- 
manded back into the felon's cell where the parties are mak- 
ing aim for. Forth came a man I never laid eyes on before, 



140 

and if it was to save me from the pit I have never been able 
to call his name, he having to designate his property, where 
situated, to Bothwell and Jenks. A Frenchman— God bless 
him ! and reader, " how is that for high." I will say I sent 
runners to call in DeBevoise, Avann and Wilson, ministers. 
Wilson was present, DeBevoise absent. He only is seen to 
help crime in its deepest dye, as I will hereafter name. 

Bothwell immediately asked my counsel to go with 
him to see about property. My paid counsel considering it. 
I consider it an insult to rush him from me at this moment. 
Counsel well understood that move won't work. Down in 
the carriage, drove home. Recess : at noon of one hour 
counsel dined at my residence, also driving to the homestead 
a second time, counsel advising me not to cut any more 
walnut trees (without his advice being asked.) I had an 
internal smile, reading thus : you think you can keep 
the case so and so long and be sure of pay. 

Oh such management of courts ! It is enough to make 
drops of blood burst from my face, knowing as I do their 
proceeding. "We returned to Jenks' office, as counsel had 
left his coat there, I in the carriage with the driver. The 
loud ring of laughter from those three men, the length of 
time it took him to get back to the carriage and his frail 
excuse, planted him, never to be resurrected, in my mind 
again, mentally saying I have paid you, take you as a 
gentleman and return you to the depot. Good bye forever, 
so help me God. 

The day before said Court I posted the following notice 
upon the Town House, beside the box for public warrants, &c. : 

" Owing to malicious and designing abuse, from citizens 
of this town, I am compelled, for my own safety, to issue 
the following : 

" Whoever trespasses upon my land, bars, gates or wall — 
that is, boundary line of the real estate of which I am 
legally seized — will be held amenable to the law. 

" Dire necessity has caused the above to be issued for the 
safety of my being. „ R R Htt.t.. 

" North Brookfield, Sept. 10, 1877." 



141 

Bothwell, taking from my hand a poster, saying I will 
post one of these on the Adams Block. Said Bothwell post- 
ing said poster low down on a barber's pole, as report has 
it. Neither poster to be seen next morning. 

" In memory of 

Mr. Kufus Herbert, 

"Who fell in the bloody 

(Committed by Benedict Arnold's troops) 

Massacre at Fort Griswold, 

Sept. 6th, 1781, 

In the 40th yeer of his age. 

Header, consider how I fell — 

For Liberty I blead ! 
Oh then repent, ye sons of hell, 

For the innocent blood you shead." 

NORTH BROOKFIELD. 

The town is excited over to-day's trial of Mrs. E. R. Hill 
for attempting to break up a funeral procession. Theophi- 
lus Bates, having hitched his horse to her fence while at- 
tending his brother's funeral, she unhitched it, and when it 
was again tied, treated the whole crowd to a tirade of indis- 
criminate abuse. Being arrested, she threatened to undress 
and appear clothed only in her native purity ; but as this 
didn't seem to terrify the constable much, she thought bet- 
ter of it, and contented herself with loud talk and threats 
of burning the houses of all the Bateses and Duncans in 
the place. She is known in the town as a woman of con- 
siderable mental power and a most fearful temper. — Spring- 
field Republican, Sept. 14. 

Mrs. E. R. Hill, of North Brookfield, was fined $15 and 
costs, Saturday, for disturbing the peace, but appealed and 
was put under $300 bonds to the Superior Court. Her hus- 
band asserts that the prosecution is malicious and that the 
arrest was in violation of the law. — Springfield Republican, 
Sept 14. 



142 

North Brookfield, September 18. 

Mr. Editor, — As you have repeated in your last issue the 
atrocious libel which the Springfield Republican issued 
against me, for the special benefit of the North Brookfield 
Railroad Corporation and Masonic aggrandizement, seem- 
ingly hoping to adjudicate the railroad land damage to 
"which the parties are defendants, on whom their wreaking 
thirst for my land, my character, my all, must have satiety. 
Mr. Bothwell's threat to Mrs. E. B. Hill, when settling for 
services, viz : J. Duncan and wife slander trial, in March, 
1872, which my memoranda will witness. He too has had a 
cup of satiety which he wishes to drink from at my expense 
and character. Said Both well, on the 11th instant, in open 
violation of the statutes, trespassed upon my premises with- 
out cause, except the above mentioned, and without justifi- 
able provocation seized me on my own land, while in per- 
formance of my daily labor, &c, holding my hands and 
calling help to hold my feet, and thus I was carried and 
forced into a felon's cell about noon, and there kept in that 
loathsome cell till 5 o'clock the next morning, full report of 
which, together with the taunts of himself and John Hebard 
to .me in the cell, will be issued in pamphlet form at an early 
date, if my health will permit, together with profile of 
grounds, <fcc. And every statement in said book shall be 
" the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so 

help me God." 

E. E. Hill. 

North Brookfield, Sept. 21st, 1877. 

Rev. G. H. Wilson, 

Of Union Congregational Church, North Brookfield, 

Mass. : 

I herewith send you protest as minister of the church 
above mentioned, forbidding your administering the " Lord's 
Supper " to S. Both well, member of said church, as he stands 
a perjured liar before Almighty God and man, by the testi- 
mony he fabricated on the 14th iust., against me, on whom he 



143 

Was wreaking his long thirsting revenge, together with the 
taunting throng, who are, as of old, ready to blaspheme vir- 
tue and purity. 

Respectfully, 

Elizabeth R. Hill, 

Member of said church. 



North Brookfield, Sept. 21st, 1877. 

Rev. G. H. DeBevoise : 

Gentleman, — I herewith ask you to cut the walnut tree 
standing upon your grave lot in Walnut Grove Cemetery, in 
said North Brookfield, Mass. ; my grave lot, which is holy 
ground, ranging by side of yours, A. Barlow and R. Doane, 
you three gentlemen owning said Jot and trees thereon, 
which are a nuisance in said yard. I have repeatedly been 
eye witness to married men, women and boys, throwing 
clubs upon said DeBevoise tree to bring down walnuts 
therefrom, to my grief and horror. And according to agree- 
ment made heretofore, there is, on Tuesday next, a valuable 
monument to be placed upon my holy lot in commemora- 
tion of my loved, lost, beautiful boys, upon top of which is 
a biblical symbol ; some parts thereof may be easily broken 
by boughs, clubs or sticks falling from said tree, ignoring, at 
this time, what may happen by malicious design in thy 
midst, of whom, in church, you are " head shepherd". 
Therefore, I pray you, without delay, even before the set- 
ting up of my monument, bought, marked and paid for, you 
will cause said tree to be cut down at once. 

Respectfully, 

E. R. Hill. 

I delivered the above letter personally to Mrs. I. May 
(wife of cemetery committee) and in whose house said 
DeBevoise rooms. On my way there I called at the store 
of G. C. Lincoln, second selectman of said North Brook- 
field, and read to him, orally, the above letter, asking him 
to forward the cutting of the above mentioned tree (at 



144 

March meeting the selectmen were appointed to act with 
the cemetery committee in removing said trees, laying out 
of new lots, repairing tombs, building wall, &c). He com- 
menced arguing thus : " We can't do it ; Mr. DeBevoise 
don't want it cut, and we shan't cut it ; and you need not 
try to make any fuss about it ; it'll amount to nothing but 
one of your rows." I sarcastically replied : " I did not stop 
to argue, only to notify and appeal to you as an officer of 
the town." G. C. L. said : " Very well." I sped off, and ere I 
reached said May's I met said Committee May ; reading 
the letter to him in the street, to which he replied as fol- 
lows : " That's right, and well explained, and Mr. DeBe- 
voise and everybody can tell just what you want done ; it 
ought to be done ; the trees are a nuisance, and we commit- 
tee did our best to have those trees cut when felling the 
rest in the spring." " Will you 'tend to it ? " " Yes ; DeBe- 
voise is not at home, but will be at one o'clock p. M." I went 
on and left said letter with May's wife, to be delivered on 
DeBevoise's arrival without delay. The 22d, eight o'clock, I 
was at post office for my morning mail, and there found a 
postal card from monument dealer stating my monument 
was being delivered by private team as the safest way and 
would be at Walnut Grove Cemetery between eleven and 
twelve o'clock A. M. 

As I turned to come out of said office Mr. DeBevoise stood 
at my right hand. I said, " Mr. DeBevoise, my monument 
is coming up this morning," placing my card before him, 
pointing at the time, &c. DeBevoise very pertly replied, 
" What is that to me ?" I says, " Did you get my letter yes- 
terday?" DeBevoise: "Yes; I shall do nothing about it 
whatever ; that tree will not be cut." Hill : " Mr. DeBevoise, 
all branches that encroach upon my lot from said tree will be 
removed this day, as they are a nuisance ; if you will cut 
them it will save me the trouble," I following him to the 
door, DeBevoise repeating, " I shall do nothing about it," in 
tone and manner that brought forth the following : When 
returning from Uncle Thomas Bartlett's, Plymouth, Mich., 
in 1873, I was on the express train following the one whose 
baggage cars w r ere precipitated in the Welland Canal, near 



H5 

St. Catherine's, and while workmen were removing the 
wreck, baggage, &c, detaining said train some five or six 
hours before the bridge could be let down, that the train 
might pass over, I saw what I called some very diminutive, 
ignorant French Canadian (Cannuck) men ; bnt I don't be- 
lieve there was one among them that possessed so contemp- 
tible, ignominious a spirit as that which earthly Gabriel H. 
DeBevoise has just manifested to me, the " widow and 
fatherless." 

In going home I passed Mr. L. Brewer's (cemetery com- 
mittee and honored sexton), calling, leaving my letter to 
said officials, which was written at the same time of said 
Gabriel's, telling him what my card at hand informed me, 
asking him to proceed at once to execute my complaint and 
wish, Brewer replying it shall be seen to at once, taking the 
letter addressed to them, and starting forthwith. I will see 
the committee, and it shall be 'tended to. I have tried for 
years to have all those walnut trees removed, for they have 
always been a nuisance in the yard, as you say. And a more 
objectionable one there was not than DeBevoise, going out 
of his saloon in advance of me, I following, saying, " Your 
committee wdll be down there without fail at said time, 
or early in the p.m. ; you know I am all alone to tend to this 
sad business." Brewer : " Some of us will be there." I 
passed home, put on my working apparel, went to the old 
homestead, from which said yard was sold to the town, 
And at the appointed time said monument arrived, and the 
colored teamster having been in said yard other times for 
similar business, called upon said Brewer for cemetery key, 
and was directed by him to G. C. Lincoln, above men- 
tioned, for the same, both asking if he had Mrs. Hill's monu- 
ment. Reader, imagine me in that graveyard, anxiously 
looking, and wondering why don't some one of those men 
come down here as promised. Three o'clock p. m. the 
cottage monument was set, nothing remaining but to place 
an urn with handles (I should think, some 16 to 20 inches 
high) upon the top, the crowning emblem, said workmen ad- 
vising me to remove the branches referred to before the 
setting of the urn, for the liability of said urn being broken 



146 

from branches falling with the wind, say nothing more, be- 
fore twenty- four hours, as I had during their time there 
anxiously watched the expected coming committee, and 
their non-appearance, caused me to employ them to re- 
move said trespassing branches, which was effected in less 
than a half hour of time, all refuse therefrom cleared away. 
Then said men fastened the sacred emblem to its place, I 
remaining, and with most scrupulous neatness removed, with 
brush and hand, the most trivial specks ; thus I left. The next 
morning being Sabbath, I went down about five o'clock to 
see if all was well there ; nothing being disturbed I returned 
to my bed, and gave up, sick with rheumatic attack. About 
eleven o'clock my brother, who lives at the homestead, came 
to my residence, informiugme that he had just driven eight or 
ten boys from my w T alnut and apple trees upon which they 
had been shaking and gathering, the foremost of said boys 
being the one who had stolen my gold watch from my reci- 
tation table in July, 1875. Being in bed trying to sweat 
myself, I asked him to tell Wilder Dean, Cons., to come in 
and see me, which he did, Mr. Dean promising to take 
charge of the boys, and also see that there was no farther 
trespassing upon my real estate. Mr. Dean said he would 
briug those boys referred to to justice, at once. Said Dean 
having an excuse for that day, Tuesday also, and "Wednes- 
day another excuse, telling me to go to Capen, Brookfield, 
&c. 

Beader, I will now bring forward Gabriel H. DeBe- 
voise. He did not preach to his " own flock " the Sabbath 
following the trimming of his walnut tree on his grave 
lot, bat said desk was occupied by the Oakham pastor. 
Monday morning, in good season, said Gabriel starts his 
legal investigation, as report has it, this wise : By getting 
the selectmen— graveyard committee — to view the trimmed 
branches ; appealing to them for succor in this bereavement ; 
telling them, unless they proceeded to execute judgment 
against me, he should be obliged thus to do. The commit- 
tee having been heretofore anxious that said trees should 
bo felled, as they were destructive to the good appearance 
of the yard, as sticks and stones were left upon lots by 



147 

those who had gathered the nuts therefrom, beside the fear- 
ful blacking stain, defacing and spoiling all marble under 
the shadow of said trees. Reader, if you have ever read 
"Ginx's Baby," or " Dame Europa's School," }^ou maybe 
able to draw a parallel. Therefore, said body informed said 
Gabriel they would convene Monday evening, and see what 
steps to take to appease his disturbed feelings. Meantime, 
said Gabriel began to collect evidence. Calling first upon 
Mr. M. Tyler, at the farm-house, whom he addressed thus : 
" Do you know who trimmed those trees in the cemetery? " 
Tyler : " I don't know anything about it." Gabriel : " Did 
not you iurnish the ladder and tools, as accessory to it ? " 
Tyler : " I did not, neither was I consulted about it in any 
way." Gabriel : " Could your ladder be taken, &c, without 
you knowing it ? " Tyler : " No." Upon this, Willie Stod- 
dard, an epileptic, came to the rescue, with the following 
information : " I see Miss Hill and Dennis Horrigan carry- 
ing a ladder, saw and axe, and 'bed cord into the cemetery ; 
the white man sawed off the branches, the colored men 
carried them away, and Miss JHill cleaned up ; I watched 
um." Gabriel, turning to Mr. Tyler, saying: "You are 
forgiven." Tyler : " Forgiven for what ? " Gabriel, hasten- 
ing onward, every step bringing him nearer that sanctuary 
where he preaches " Peace „and good will to all men," and 
"if thy brother trespass against thee, forgive him seventy 
times seven." And ere he reaches that " dedicated plot," 
he stops, calls for Mr. Erasmus Haston, and questions him 
thus : " Did you lend Mrs. Hill tools on Saturday last ? " 
Haston: "I did." Gabriel: "Who borrowed them?" 
Haston: "Mrs. Hill.'- Gabriel : ''"What did she say?" 
Haston : " She wanted my best axe and saw ; she keeps no 
such implement, and when she wants one, I let her, or who- 
ever comes for it, have it." Gabriel : " What did she say 
she was going to do with it ? " Haston : " I don't think she 
told ; she was in great haste." Gabriel : " W T ho brought 
them back ? " Haston : " A boy." Gabriel : " What boy ? " 
Haston : " I could not say certain, but I think it was a Hor- 
rigan boy." Gabriel : " What did he say ? " Haston : " If 
anything, it was thank you." Gabriel : " Have you seen 



148 

Mrs. Hill since?" Haston : "I Lave." Gabriel :" What 
did she say ? " Haston : " She said her monument was set 
without accident, and she was much pleased with it ; she 
was here after her milk." Gabriel : " Did she not say any- 
thing else ? " Haston : " Yes, she wished me to bring her 
over a peck of potatoes." Gabriel : " Was that all ? " Has- 
ton : " Yes " Gabriel passes by the nest house, being the 
one from which the dead bodies of wife and child had been 
borne some three years previous, to whom Mrs. Hill had 
carried a large quantity of Baltimore belle rose buds, wax 
flowers, yucca blossoms (baby DeBevoise, though eleven 
years old, was thus called), together with her brother 
James, had been my pupils, at my residence, as well as in the 
school-house, passing the sanctuary to his boarding-house. 
In the afternoon, G. H. DeBevoise takes a team, drives out 
one and a half miles to School District No. 7, takes said 
Willie Stoddard to said school-house, and there calls for 
Dennis Horrigan ; said boy, eight years of age, appearing 
at their request; and Gabriel questioned him thus: "Is 
your name Dennis Horrigan?" Dennis: "Yes, sir." Ga- 
briel : " What did you do for Mrs. Hill last Saturday? " Den- 
nis : " I helped her carry a ladder down to her baby's grave 
lot." Gabriel : " Where did she put it ? " Dennis : " Beside 
her babies' grave." Gabriel: "What else did she do with 
it ? " Dennis : "I don't know; I was in a hurry to get home." 
Gabriel : " Did you carry anything else ?" Dennis : " Yes, 
sir, I carried a saw." Gabriel : " Who carried the axe ? " 
Dennis : " Mrs. Hill carried the axe and bed cord." Gabriel : 
"What did she say she was going to do with them? " Den- 
nis : " She did not say." Gabriel : " What did she talk 
about?" Dennis :" Why I don't know." Gabriel :" You 
do know ? " Dennis, "Why she said the rounds were a foot 
apart in the ladder, and asked me to guess the distance be- 
tween things." Gabriel : " What else did she say ?" Dennis : 
" She told me to hurry home, and she would make me a 
present one of these days." In the evening, Mr. Brewer 
said the committee had thought it best to have a final deci- 
sion upon that vexed question. 

Sept. 25. — Tuesday morning, report has it, the following 



149 

gentlemen were deputized to investigate said monument 
dealer, aud, if judgment could be executed, to do tho same. 
May, of cemetery committee, Gabriel H. DeBovoise, S. 
Bothwell, "who with dripping glands was anxiously waiting 
for time to speed its flight that ho could grasp Mrs. Hill's 
hands. " I'll got the handcuffs on this time ; I tell you we'll 
get her name in the newspapers, and everything I can have 
suggested will help bring about the time when she will beg 
me to let her rest. I'll give you a clear title to every pos- 
session of mine on earth. This is the richest thing out, 
DeBevoise is going to settle that railroad claim for the 
town." Thus that diabolical S. Bothwell must overflow his 
peculiar channels of imagination. 

'< [>t. 2G, — Wednesday morning, at different corners of the 
street, report has it, " Sirs. Hill is arrested ; DeBevoise 
done it this time ; that French Gabriel ain't going to help 
Mrs. Hill, 'cause she don't worship deviltry." Just think of 
that DeBevoise, only a few weeks ago, taking the part of a 
drunkard, who was profanely and fast driving a horse on 
the Sabbath day — to such an extent of brutality, that the 
horse died in a few minutes after he landed in the stable. 
"That's so. Yes, and that ain't all. "When Hebard had 
the drunkard and horse-killer arrested and brought up in 
Jenks' office, that little DeBevoise got right down side of 
Jenks, kept whispering, and, ye see, the feller was almost 
dead drunk. The horse was an awful sight, he had sweated 
so. You see, Jenks was obliged to fine him, with costs., and 
DeBevoise paid it. This will show up old DeBevoise." 

Wednesday I was near sick-a-bed ; it's not much use to try 
to move. Mrs. John Weatherel is to be buried this p. m. I 
went to the homestead, hoping to see the sexton, that I might 
tell him to occupy any hitching places there are around my 
land, as I had no objection, and was glad to assist all in 
their time of trouble, who had not committed the unpardon- ( 
able sin. 

When at baby's grave, Tuesday, I was told of the company 
that had gone to Worcester, also that Perry, the new sexton, 
was saying, " If Miss Hill has cut those branches one inch 
shorter than the law provides, we shall have her arrested ; 



150 

and we calculate we shall got the cemetery fine on her." 
Bystander: "Why, Perry, yon have been trying to have 
those trees cut ; you're going to join Gabriel in his meanness." 
" We don't propose Mrs. Hill shall do our business for us." 
" Why didn't you come down then ? You always come when 
sent for by anybody else. I will tell you why you did not 
come. You knew well those branches would havo to come 
off over Mrs. Hill's lot, and your committee thought you 
would hang back, and let her trim, thus making her a ' cat's 
paw,' to give you the chance to cut those trees down." 

Wednesday p. M., I was at the homestead, waiting for the 
funeral procession of Mrs. Weatherel, and as friends were 
gnthei'ingin the grave-yard, I sitting in front door, Bothwell 
and Foster rode by, hitching their horse upon my premises; 
also W.kler Dean, three constables in their working suits ; 
soon f j'lowed by Mr. Stone, in carriage, from Hebard & 
Duncan's livery stable alone ;' he seeing me, dropped his 
eyes, as if moist, to weep. B-eader, the damnable plot of these 
men was clear to be seen by me. Thus I sat noticing their 
every move, not forgetful of the sad rite being performed. 
I had placed in my Walnut Grove plot a cross, with notice 
reading as follows : " Bev. G. H. DeBevoise, pause and 
consider. Please, G. H. DeBevoise, preach from this text 
next holy day, — Upon this cross was nailed a Serpent, whose 
head I had bruised in the path between G. H. DeBevoise 
and my grave lot." 

Fea: iiic* the chalk marks would soon be effaced I wrote 
He v. G. H. DeBevoise to please preach from the above 
symbol the next holy day. This notice also on the cross : 

" Owing to malicious and designing abuse from citizens of 
this town I am compelled, for my own safety, to issue the 
following : Whoever trespasses upon my land, bars, gates or 
wall that is the boundary line of the real estate of which I 
am legally seized, will be held amenable to the law. Dire 
necessity has caused the above to be issued for the safety of 
my being. 

"E. E. Hill." 



151 

Botliwell ana Foster read said notice, from appearances. 
Bothweli situngupon my wall after reading and writing off the 
same. During Lis writing he would stop and pick upon said 
cross (plainly to be seen), thus removing said serpent. The 
mourners were dispersing, and Bothwell's comrade directed 
his attention to me in the door. He slowly took himself off of 
my wall, then turning and coming unto where I was standing, 
in the presence of scores, and addresses me thus : " Ilrave a 
warrant for your arrest for cutting those trees ; I ain't going 
to read it now. but I give you a chance to .get you a lawyer,* 
as you will be tried before Jenks, on Saturday — so be ready." 
I did not speak. All eyes were upon me. He continued, " I 
warn you not to cut, or break in any way, a limb or branch 
hanging over the wall on your land. The wall belongs to 
the cemetery, and the limbs don't hurt your land ; if you cut 
or break one I shall have another arrest on you, the warrant 
is in my pocket to do it," &c. Still I did not speak. Both- 
well said : " Will you be ready on Saturday at ten o'clock? " 
Still I did not speak. Bothweli said, " If you are deaf and 
dumb it's no use to talk," and walked off. Beader, I did 
move, after he passed, and went east to look and see what 
Bothweli had picked from the cross. He had picked the 
serpent off, thus removing the symbol so significant at this 
time. Miss Horrigan came along, carried me home, and then 
went to the village for my mail where I heard of the most 
fiendish plot be.ing laid to end my public career for all time. 
One said, " last evening, so and so, was arranged for to-day, 
and you have outwitted their design, it's only added fuel to 
their flames. I tell you, Mrs. Hill, if you should not speak in 
your ordinary tone upon railroads, or your imprisonment in the 
cell, they are going to got you there, or into some hellish 
spot." I still breathe, but, readers, I say to you that never, 
in ancient or modern history, or in works of fiction, can bo 
found printed the malicious designing abuse those church 
masonic men are dealing out to me. Header, you cannot 
think it's the cutting of less than one-half foot of solid wood 
from the three trees ; oh, no. It's their sins, and Mrs. Hill 
will not compromise the same. Thursday morning I went 
to Worcester, and there learned from a monument dealer 



152 

that the men described came into his building, Tuesday, and 
asked him if he cut the branches for Mrs. Hill on Saturday; 
and as ho did not, and the two men were absent, they were 
not likely to find much satisfaction. He described a short 
man with stove-pipe hat as nervously snapping and moving 
all the time. I says to myself, " I wish that little spitfire 
could let off some of his fuel, he'd feel better." Reader, that 
little man was Gabriel. 

Sept. 27. — Thursday evening I returned home. Ere I could 
get there, I was told " they had been drumming citizens to 
be at the Town Hall on Saturday, for Mrs. Hill was to be 
tried before Jenks ; don't fail to come ; tell all the boys ; a 
gay time we shall have ; golly, I guess she wishes she hadn't 
wrote about the railroad," etc. And a good church woman 
had read something her own fancy had suggested, and the 
frail gossip women were gathering together, hoping Mr. 
DeBevoise will get the case, he is so good ; he ha'n't had 
a chance to play croquet once (this being Gabriel's pastime). 

Mrs. says, " I think it is a shame Mrs. Hill should 

dare cut those branches ! " At my own home, soon my bell 
rang, when a friend came to me, saying that Bothwell had 
employed, as report says, a fish-pedlar to spread my arrest, 
and trial to be on Saturday, and to tell every one to come 
on for a time, and the pedlar has done so ! Headers, this 
book represents the condition of affairs in North Brookfield, 
Mass. Saturday I was in New York city. Sent telegram to 
C. E. Jenks — " I waive examination. Call on Erasmus Has- 
ton and T. Horrigan for bonds. Elizabeth Pi. Hill." Thus, 
that Saturday DeBevoise was thwarted in his evil purpose 
against me. Reader, I would no more go before Jenks and 
the tools the town uses to maltreat justice and right, and 
utter a word again, except the above dispatch, than I would 
put my head in the largest live hornet's nest ever seen by 
man, and expect to come off unstung. I wrote Tuesday (on 
hearing of said gentleman G, being still on the raid) to ceme- 
tery committee, to refresh the mind of DeBevoise of the 
number of times he had thrown refuse upon my land, also 
trespassing himself and son many times upon the same 



153 

which may be applied as follows, " An eye for an eye, a 
tooth for a tooth." I will here insert a few epitaphs. 

On the tombstone of Kev. Joseph Moody, a somewhat 
eccentric pastor of the olden time, at York, Maine, is this 

couplet — 

" Although this stone may moulder into dust, 

Yet, Joseph Moody's name continue must." 

At Banbury churchyard, Oxfordshire, England, is the fol- 
lowing : 

" To the memory of Ric. Richards, who by a gangreen first lost a toe, 
afterwards a leg, and lastly hio life, on the 7th April, 1650. 

" Ah ! cruel Death, to make three meals of one ! 
To taste, and eat and eat, till all was gone. 
But know, thou tyrant ! when the trump shall call, 
He'll find his ieet, and stand when thou shalt fall." 

The following is said to be on a tombstone, near London : 

"Poor Marthie Shiel has gone away: 
Her would if her could, but her couldn't stay ; 
Her had 2 bad legs and a baddish cough ; 
It was her two bad legs that carried her off." 

The epitaphs can be used as a comparison, if you wish. 
The following inscription on a tombstone, in England, 
may be regarded as somewhat doctrinal : 

" Bold Infidelity, turn pale and die — 
Beneath this stone four infants' ashes lie ; 

Say, are they lost or saved ? 
If death's by sin, they sinned ! because they are here ; 
If heaven's by works, in heaven they can't appear. 

Reason, oh ! how depraved ! 
Revere the Bible sacred page, the knot's untied : 
They died, for Adam sinned ; they live, for Jesus died. 

That Gabriel H. DeBevoise was held as eccentric by his 
own parishioners, by others, simple-minded, and many hoping 
he would know enough to leave town (by being called) with- 
out being advised he must go, &c. I would wish to call the 
name, but will at the time it may be desired. During those 



154 

many hearings, I never spoke against him. But I will say, 
within the last four years, at funerals, he has astonished me 
beyond measure, and his great notice of parties having per- 
petrated demoralizing and prison offences. The first case 
I will mention is Fred. Porter, who was obliged for illegal 
misdemeanors committed in Boston, where employed, being 
at the time twenty-seven or eight years of age (as I have 
been acquainted from his birth to that time), and, if report 
is true, not the first nor second but third offence (Mrs. Pa; 
ladize particularizing to Mrs. Josiah Whiting, said Paradise 
associates, in Boston). He leaves, nobody knows, as is told. 
After being gone twelve years, more or less, returns last sum- 
mer to his mother's house. During his absence he changes 
his name to Perry, marries, and is a father. Thus his wife 
knows nothing of his home but that he is an orphan. He 
returns to his late father's house, his wife, Mrs. Perry, and 

the child, Perry. That's the way. Well, how is it, Mr. ? 

Header, is that child's name Perry or Porter? 

The late Dr. Porter, not' on noticable terms with said 
Gabriel DeBevoise, and when DeBevoise's child and wife 
died, Mrs. P. with her own tongue, hoped it would be the 
means of Gabriel removing from our midst, &c. She hoped 
he would know enough to understand its plain meaning. He 
has not sense for the needs of this town, &c. When the 
prodigal son returned, Gabriel was foremost in giving him 
front rank, so far as his influence could avail, inviting him 
in the church with a rush (a disgrace). When I called on 
Gabriel (reader, I never shall know Rev. to that man again) 
informing him of Sherman, etc., said Perry or Porter, wife 
and child, was at his office ; Gabriel urging them to call often 
and play croquet. When I left said office, I wished him to 
visit me. Gabriel replied : " I will see Mr. Sherman ; I think 
he ought to pay you, and if you will not enforce the law, I 
will see it is paid." I told him I had no desire to deal in 
law ; far from it, &c. All the words since between DeBe- 
voise and me, are in this book. DeBevoise was going past 
my mowing that the engine had just set burning. I directed 
his attention to my trouble. " That " says Gabriel, " won't 
hurt it any ; that, there, and then a ' balm in Gilead !' " 



155 

The reckless driver and killer of a horse on Sabbath day. 
The Monday following, Gabriel was staving off jail for said 
criminal, and truly rehearsed by the " boys here before." An- 
other instance of moral depravity in our midst, and Gabriel 
figures : Thus, a miss of twenty years and more, born of 
common people, which moi ey had advanced beyond good 
sense, was about to be married, having six bridesmaids 
and six grooms (in waiting). She became ailing, &c, and 
calling a sugar-pill doctor, his prescription was : "Be mar- 
ried without delay.'' Her innocence she declared ; also 
denying if it was that, she never "knew men." The 
affianced groom saying, " if it was so, it was not his ; he 
had never ' known ' her." She doctored and doctored, and 
the sugar-pill urging her to marry. Her sickness brought 
wonderful rotundity. Said sugar doctor went to Dr. Tyler, 
as report has it, to go and see said patient. Dr. Tyler, 
passing out into the sitting-room to father and mother of 
said girl, said : " If you want your grandchild born under 
wedlock, my advice is to have your daughter married 
this evening ; the child will be born inside ot a week and 
prepare for the same at once^ Good day.' 

The father, daughter and to be-son, started off in haste, 
going to South Brookfield, calling their minister up and out 
of bed, and, without maid or groom, were married between 
9 and 10 o'clock p. m. Oh that fearfully lying to a mother, 
hypocrisy to be handed down from generation to generation, 
is the greatest destroying sin ot this world. That affair was 
laughable. The big shop promising the child pegging-block 
or piano. It is what I call low, but shows*the color ®f North 
Brookfield. Gabriel evidently sorry (by his conduct) that 
she had to say, " I am sorry I have sinned, and I pray this 
church to forgive us ;" all is now white as snow ; drive on. 

There was a lady, good-hearted and a good singer, died ; 
Gabriel was much affected (it seemed as if he would burst), 
and also it seemed by his calling Mrs. Stoddard so often, so 
near together, that his grief thus found vent. A lady, aunt 
by marriage, was so disgusted (as well as many others) she 
hitched this way, that, and the other ; if the turns had been 
straight ahead, she would have been a number of rods off. 



156 

1 have laughed maL.y a time till my sides ached, thinking 
of his fanciful eulogies, and his great power of giving those 
who are pleasing to Gabriel their local position in heaven. 
Gabriel calls forth this epitaph, on a tombstone near Lon- 
don — 

" Here lies the body of Nancy II. Gwyn, 
Who was so pure within; 
She burst her outer shell of sin, 
And hatched herself a cherubim." 

Another leading singer died also, Milliner. There were 
mourning gossipers — " let us go and see to this funeral, " and 
Gabriel was more extravagant beyond decency to those who 
knew her whole life aud he, to make such mockery to the 
truthful minded- is an outrage upon truth. An epitaph will 
conclude this : — 

At Sarragossa, Spain, is the following : 

" Here lies John Quehecce, precentor to my Lord the King. When he ia 
admitted to the choir of angels, whose society he will embellish, and where he 
will distinguish himself by his power of song, God shall say to the Angels: 
" Cease ye calves ! and let me hear John, Quebecce, precentor of my Lord the 
King!"" 

Near San Diego, California, a tombstone thus reads : 

"This yere is sakrid to the memory of William Henry Skaraken, who caim 
to Ins deth by bein shot by Colts revolver — one of the old kind, bras mounted 
and of sutch is the kingdom of heavin. " 

Last summer Charley Belcher died, 18 years of age, a 
scholar of mine, a son of Temperance. Gabriel presided, 
reading from his book of selections, one passage, " In our 
Father's house there are many mansions, " Gabriel had a 
thought strike him, then and there, thus : " that even in 
Heaven there was a place for Charley, " &c. I retired be- 
hind my handkerchief, and his remarks brought to mind, 
"Then you do think the Almighty will lot Charley a three- 
legged cricket, or small-sized cigar box to squeeze in some- 
where, perhaps." Gabriel always has his special, fancied 
friends. Charley, I knew, was prepared to meet his God in. 



157 

peace, and Gabriel disgusted rne there. Mrs. Porter has 
often told of a certain member of his church saying his fu- 
neral poetry — it seemed to her, as he stretched them on 
and on, like bobbin on the tail of a kite. Reader, I hope the 
earthly Gabriel will profit from the above, if Congregation- 
alists will countenance him after a knowledge of the follow- 
ing proceedings, written in this book : 

Thursday. Sept. 21th. — At "Worcester, Jenks, Nye, Bates, 
Bacheller, in the cars, happy as angels of " darkness," I 
noticing every look, wink, or wag. 

At Spencer, before "Worcester, to see about publishing the 
railroad proceedings, which are herein mentioned. I am 
told that North Brookfield " wants this affair hushed up." 
I'll be your bondsman for that ! The way it will be hushed 
on my part will be to print in pamphlet form their illegal 
diabolical proceedings, and thus spread the same from pole 
to pole. I expect to be murdered by that gang and mob, 
but God grant the delay of the same may be till the truth 
has gone forth to accomplish that which cannot be reached 
in our courts, now in custody of money and not law. 

At "Worcester, to see and have my profile altered, as 
promised, and bars and trees arranged by exact measure 
by the surveyor of the plan of the map herein. " Said sur- 
veyor is in the south-east or west part of the State," I am 
told by the clerk. " As said place is somewhat latitudinal, 
can't you tell when he will be back from that large place?" 
" He will be gone about three months, engaged ; he will be 
on at times." "Please tell him I was here to-day for him 
to put bars, &c, on the map, as he agreed to do willingly 
and readily, and expect him to do the same, and give reasons 
for your direction of his whereabouts, which to me means 
cents on the eyes." — Gone. 

In less than one hour after reaching my own house in 
North Brookfield I was on my way back to "Worcester ; bag- 
gage — a change of under-clotbes and one extra basque. 

Saturday, Sept. 29th. — I am boarding at 91 Sands street, 
Brooklyn, N. Y. Having made all arrangements for printing 



158 

pamphlets, and having made part payment before leaving, 
telegraphing, and telling in every place my fugitive condi- 
tion, sympathy and listening ears to every word, and it has 
proven there was not a " Judas " among the crowds of audi- 
ence. But " God assist you !" came from many a lip. 

Many pages of this book are written and given to the 
press, and God grant that every line may accomplish that 
for which it is heralded, and bring reform out of chaos, light 
out of darkness, is the prayer of 

E. E. Hill. 

E. E. Hill, 

Sept. 29th, a.m., 1877. 

At Westminster Hotel (for I am a fugitive, confidentially), 
New York City, N. Y. 

(Telegram.) 
C. E. Jenks, 

North Brookfield, Mass. 

I waive examination. Call on Erasmus Haston and T. 
Horrigan for bonds. 

Elizabeth E. Hill. 

E. E. Hill, 

Oct. 8th, 1877. 

At Western Union Telegraph Office. 

New York City, N. Y. 

(Telegram.) 

District-Attorney Staples, 

Worcester, Mass. 

Put over my appealed cases. It is impossible to be 
present. 

Elizabeth E. Hill. 

October 13th, v. M. — In New York City, searching all news- 
paper offices for Massachusetts news. I am at last di- 
rected to Geo. P. Eowell & Co.'s newspaper agency, and, 



159 

calling for thrco last issues of Spencer Sun, Mass., I find 
the following : 

" Mrs. E. R. Hill's barn was discovered to be on fire on 
Saturday evening by the engineer on the 8.30 r.M. train. An 
alarm was immediately sounded, and the engines were 
promptly on hand, but it was past control when they ar- 
rived, and all they could do was to protect the house. It 
was the work of an incendiary, and the selectmen have 
offered a reward of $500 for information that will detect 
the criminal." 

(Telegram.) 

New Yoek City, Oct. 13th, 1877. 

To Dr. Warren Tyler, 

North Brookfield, Mass. : 

For God's sake protect my house, and all therein, safe. 

Elizabeth E. Hill. 

Reader, in this sketch-book I bring forth facts which ex- 
hibit individuals who are figuring for my weal or woe, as 
you may see ; and the unavoidable inevitables which the 
wickedness of men have hurled me into are mysterious and 
appalling ; still they come, fiery, fierce, causing a wail of 
woe to burst forth, arising from the very citadel of my being. 
"What meaneth it?" I point. "Mrs. E. R. Hill's barn 
was discovered on fire on Saturday evening by the engineer 
on the 8:30 p. m. train. An alarm was immediately sounded 
and the engines were promptly on hand ; but it was past 
control when they arrived, and all they could do was to pro- 
tect the house. It was the work of an incendiary, and the 
selectmen have offered a reward of $500 for information that 
will detect the criminal." 

I am Mrs. E. R. Hill — oh — oh ! the cup runneth over ; I 
am a fugitive from that, my native place, by that ruthless 
mob which you see are still rampant. The extract is cut for 
me from the paper ; I pass out in the street writhing in 
despair ; I see a policeman ; I ask him to show me to the 
telegraph office ; with all kindness I am aided along. Oh, 



1G0 

my God, wilt thou protect me from that unsatiated railroad, 
masonic frenzy. Gliding quickly to the table, I despatch, 
" Dr. Warren Tyler, North Brookfield, Mass.— For God's 
sake protect my house and all therein safe — Elizabeth R. 
Hill." At the delivery, "How soon can I receive an an- 
swer ? " "About ." " Please send reply to 91 Sands 

street, Brooklyn, my place of abode — confidential — I am a fugi- 
tive here from a plotting, intriguing ring who are hunting 
me down far worse than any blood-hounds ever read about 
in the Southern Confederacy." 

At the same time showing my " extract cut from the 
paper," "Are you insured?" nothing worth, compared with 
loss. "We will deliver your message when returned, in 
haste," I passed out ; asked policeman to aid me to 
Fulton Ferry. I pass through the crowds in the cabin to 
the platform ; the wheel has stopped rolling over head 
(laying cable), but the ponderous wheel in the deep will 
soon roll me stilly across the river, while the surging bil- 
lows within heave moaning like the ocean that cannot, can- 
not rest. "Saturday evening," those plotting fiends bent 
on crushing me in every conceivable way ! The chain is un- 
locked, the wheel moves, stilly, noiselessly I am gliding o'er 
the waves of the deep, while the waves are surging moun- 
tains high in my soul ! ! " All they could do was to protect 
the house." My house must be riddled ; that barn only 
nine feet from the house, with over five tons of hay of the very 
best quality in every way, nearly half a tou of coal, the rest 
outside in abin there ; my barrel of Henry Ward Beecher's ser- 
mons, my barrel of Christian Unions, my barrel of Educational 
Journals, and other periodicals that I have been gathering 
for the last eleven or twelve years ; that pure, dry hickory 
wood and piles of barrels and boxes ; that barrel of pure 
cider vinegar, three two-gallon jugs of the same ; would 
that mob smell of that vinegar in that hot flame? My fruit 
trees, that yield from $40 to $80 per year, must a good half 
of them be ruined, at $100 or $125 insurance, I know not 
which. Oh, they meant to burn everything, Mr. Haston, 
there they could not refuse the engine. Oh, all that mob are 



1G1 

sorry for is tliat I was not in the centre of those flames, 
just as they had, in olden time, John Rogers ! ! 

Where did my white doves fly to, for safety from those 
flames ? 

The time is not now the " dove " can carry the news. I 
am landed on the shore. Oh, my God, when, oh when, shall 
I be landed, safely protected from that infuriated mob ! 
Oh, how much street dodging, each one is on his way but 
me ! Oh, God, Thou knowest it is not my way. Is this 
Thy way ? At my nice quiet city home I ring ; little Lotty 
oj)ens, I kiss her through the thick veil. In the back 
parlor (that's my rent paid for room), on my couch, and a 
fountain of tears flowing from my agonized soul; oh, my 
burdens seemed more than I could bear before ! ! BellaH. is 
at the piano in the front parlor (her usual place while waiting 
for tea), it comes to my ear from her fingers touching those 
keys, " Sweet hour of Prayer," as if God himself had di- 
rected her for my need ! It soothed and calmed my spirit 
to rest. It was near nine o'clock before I went down to the 
dining-room, and there rehearsed my tale of woe ! 

This notable day is October 13th — I came to this house 
September 29th. Thus two weeks have passed in Brooklyn 
City. 

October 14th. — I try to rise from my couch with leaden 
weight, affliction chaining me down. Oh, I cannot, I can- 
not rally trom this added shock ! Oh, my God, help me ! 
Guide, oh, guide me ! Thou Great Jehovah ! ! ! Little 
Lizzie H., at the piano singing and playing at this in- 
stant : 

Pull for the shore, sailor, pull for the shore ! 
Heed not the rolling waves, but bend to the oar : 
Trust in the life-boat, all else will fail, 
Stronger the surges dash, and fiercer the gale ; 
Heed not the stormy winds, though loudly they roar ; 
"Watch the " bright morning star," and pull for the shore. 
Pull for the shore, sailor, pull for the shore. 



162 

That wave of despair that was surging mountain high to 
engulf me in its bosom — thus that little ministering angel 
stepped forth and stayed the billows. I rose and wept with joy 
for this sudden calm. Oh, true, how true, it is said, " Of 
such is the kingdom of heaven ! " 

The two letters written 30th ult., to friends in North Brook- 
field, not stating at that time my place of abode, though in 
the very same parlor, and chair, for reasons why, you well 
know. 

To-day I write two letters to North Brookfield, one to 
Spencer, one to St. Catherines, full of anguish, but sup- 
pressed by the above " ministering " Lizzie. 

O my pamphlet ; with this new woe to hinder me getting 
my proofs together, oh, what a fiery link this ! help ! help ! 
Thou my only Guide ! Mr. Hutchinson takes my letters to 
post. A tall, thin gentleman, of very few ivords ; but how 
he speaks : " Madam, be comforted ; be thankful those ter- 
rible men did not have you consumed with your buildings. 
Go on, finish your book, that it may preach from pole to 
pole." (" Mrs. H.") Write Mrs. Hill, write a longer ser- 
mon, than that little French Do Be. will preach to-day, 
to die with utterance. Yours, to help emancipate the 
world. 

October 15th, 2 o'clock A. M. — I will try to compile a 
few more incidents ere' I reach the most atrocious savage 
cruelty ever given to a human being, in what is termed a 
civilized town. The tears still flow to think of the devasta- 
tion of my quiet home, where I have labored with my hands 
with great skillful executiveness, where three of my children, 
boys, were born, sickened, and died, working in the power 
of my might for the best interests of mankind, in church, 
sabbath school, my absence from either was notice of sick- 
ness, contributing to the needy in every po3ition of life, 
without asking how, or what, or which way. Through 
what or which society can I promulgate my name best that 
I did so, and so ? 



163 

(Telegram.) 

New York City, Oct. 16, 1877. 

To E. Haston & L. P. De Land, 

Insurance Agent, <fec, 

North Brookfield, Mass. : 

Shield my house and contents from the insatiable fiendish 
mob. 

Elizabeth E. Hill. 

Mrs. E. R. Hill is reported to be stopping in Canada. 

(Telegram.) 

New Yobk, Oct. 18th, 1877. 
To Lutheb P. De Land, . 

Insurance Agent, 

North Brookfield, Mass. : 

Is my house burned that contents were removed? 
Answer immediately. 

Elizabeth B. Hill. 

Not one answer sent I ! 1 My first telegram was to be 

sent to my place of abode confidentially, as I was a fugitive 

from my native town, North Brookfield, Mass., driven by 

the Railroad-Masonic-J)eBevoise mob. Never was a slave 

in the Southern Confederacy hunted down by bloodhounds 

with more brutal ferochVy than the rings above mentioned 

are seeking to destroy me — morally, mentally, physically, 

financially ! ! ! — all to cover their own sins, and to get the 

dollars. 

Elizabeth B. Hill. 

Strangers are very kind — their sympathy evidently helps 

sustain me in this awful hour ! 

E. R. H. 

October 20th. — A letter from North Brookfield. I kissed it 
over ; I well knew whose pen had written that message. I 



161 

stayed long reading, and telling the ray of hope just come 
that, perhaps, some of my sacred relics, and earnings of my- 
self an 1 oldest son, were saved. to me a little longer, that I 
may look ujum some token of the loved, lost, ere that fiendish 
mob, by some ag nt of their own number, will end my life, 
as Abraham Lincoln. " Oh, lady ; not so bad as that, I 
hope." They will not stop till it is done! They meant to 
take my only home, knowing well I had no money to replace 
my loss, the insurance not being one tenth the loss ! 

Tiie many that have beard my fugitive story are anxiously 
watching the news when it comes. To every one I show 
my letter, and its contents read. 

Across tie river, I rapidly reach my home. Letter first 

in the hall taken by Mrs. II . "News from Sodom?" 

"Yes; but from that one that is, ' peradventure, to save the 
city!' 1 She says my barn was burnt at 8 o'clock in the 
evening; the house not harmed; crowds were there, and 
on the Sabbath day the hay, <fec, burning till Monday. 
Oh ! my God ! wilt thou not, as of old, through thy om- 
niscient and omnipresent power, bring him forth unmistak- 
able, to meet that justice he so richly deserves. I feel, I 
know, as if God himself had told me, it is direct from the 
DeBevoise mob's disappointment. Oh, God! hasten "Thy 
time " to bring that fiend to the same dwelling where Samp- 
son now resides, who burned George Tyler's barn at "West 
Brookt 'lass., 1875, because he was refused a glass of 

cid 'my nate grandfather's barn) — 4 to 6 fat oxen, 30 tons 
of hay, pig-;, sheep and fatlings, besides working horses, and 
no h suranje. 

Sunday, t. 21<s', 5:30 a.m. — There's that black cat, that 
ate my beefsteak for me, yesterday morning. How 
stealthily she moves; she climbs the railing on the piazza, 
her white paws upon the Wiuaow pane (so like white 
gloves) ; that white paw feels for " that entrance," her black 
nose touches the glass, with white paw aiding her, to her 
utmost stretch, showing the white breast (so much like a 
white apron) ; she can't enter ; disappointed, she climbs 
down the railing, scenting, I w ill find something. 



165 

Black cat, with white paws, and breast, you remind me of 
the treatment I have and am receiving from some citizens 
in North Brookfield, Mass. 

October 23d— This morning, at Pettingill & Co.'s, I find 
the following : 

NORTH BROOKFIELD. 

The barn of Mrs. E. 11. Hill was burned Saturday night 
by an incendiary, and her house, near by, was saved by the 
firemen only with great difficulty, loss |300, partly insured. 
Mrs. Hill, the only occupant cf the place, was out of town 
at the time. She was to be tried by Justice Jenks on Satur- 
day, on the charge of mutilating valuable trees in the Wal- 
nut Grove Cemetery. Constable Bothwell, who has held a 
warrant against her since last Thursday, but did not arrest 
her, as she was supposed to be a home body, and not liable 
to be called out of town, only notified her to appear on 
Saturday. She was in town on Friday, but on Saturday 
morning, as the court was about to open, a telegram from 
New York, signed "E. U. Hill," was received, stating her 
inability to be present, and expressing her regrets. — Spring- 
field Union, Oct. 1st. 

NORTH BROOKFIELD. 

Mrs. E. R. Hill's barn was des royed by fire on S Uurday 
evening. The trial of Mrs. E. 11. Hill, which was to have 
taken place on Saturday, was postponed, as Mrs. Hill was 
unexpectedly called out of the State. Constable Bothwell, 
who held a warrant against her two days before she left 
town, depended upon her word to appear before the trial 
justice. Mrs. Hill is charged with mutilating valuable trees 
in Walnut Grove Cemetery. Putting the fire and the court 
cases together, the people of the town express the belief 
that the former was the result of an attempt to create sym- 
pathy for Mrs. Hill outside the town limits. — Worcester Spy. 

Mrs. E. R Hill is to be tried in Town Hall this morning 
at ten o'clock, before Justice Jenks, for mutilating trees in 
Walnut Grove Cemetery. Geo. F. Verry is for the prosecu- 
tion. — North Brookfield Journal, Sept. 2dlh. 



166 

An outrageous piece of vandalism was committed at "Wal- 
nut Grove Cemetery about a week ago, upon tho lots of JXev. 
G. H. DeBevoise, Asahel Barlow aud Mr. Doaue. The 
limbs of trees on these were cut from the trunk to within a 
few feet of the top, on the side facing the lot of Mrs. E. It. 
Hill, on which she has just placed a monument. The trees 
are ruined as objects of beauty, and their growth in the 
future probably checked. Great indignation is felt in town, 
and all will be gratified to learn that the perpetrators will be 
brought to justice. — North Brookjield Journal, Sept. 2.9th. 

These objects of beauty are the town's acknowledged 
nuisance. 

Mrs. E. B. Hill's buildings were fired at 8 o'clock in the 
evening, thus having a torch light. Was it to pay for not 
having a court? There are more than fifty that ought to 
be examined by insurance agents. I demand they investi- 
gate that fire, set. 

Mr. Editor: — We would like to inquire of the law-abiding 
and peace-loving citizens of North Brookfield, if it is not 
about time to put a veto upon such vandalism and abuse as 
has been carried pn with a high hand in our town of late ? 
I should say so, if there is any virtue in law and it be any- 
thing more than mere form. If a procession of mourning 
friends;are to be hooted at and blackguarded as the}' carry 
their dead to his last repose, and even the cemetery, the 
place above all others we hold in reverent, tender regard, is 
to be desecrated in such a malicious manner, we believe it 
high time the perpetrators were brought to justice, and pre- 
vented from venting their malice any further. 

X. Y. Z. et al. 
— Nc/rth Broolc/ield Journal, Sept. 29th. 

Bloat, hitch on — Alpha and Omega — that is not enough, 
<fec. You must not speak out loud and protect your own 
property from tho above writer, who is going to take my 
last cent to build up his own false chow. Did you tip over 
and smash those monuments in your haste to rush the 
building of tho rnilroad through that sacred set-apart Best. 
needlessly desp ling the same ? 



1G7 

Kev. Mr. DeBevoise preached a timely and interesting 
sermon on the text, "We all do fade as a leaf," Sunday 
morning. — North Broohfield Journal, Oct. Gfh. 

Said DeBevoise looked awfully faded (more so than a leaf) 
on the Saturday morning before, with temper. 

A telegram received from Mrs. Hill, Saturday, waiving an 
examination, put an end to the anticipations 01 the crowd 
ready to attend the trial, and now it seems very uncertain 
when it will come off. " A bird in the hand," &c. — North 
Broohfield Journal, Oct. 

But you had the gathering at 8 P. m., torch light, &c. 

The quiet of the town was disturbed about 8:30 p. M. last 
Saturday, by an alarm of fire caused by the burning of Mrs. 
E. R. Hill's barn. As the builing was small, and well filled with 
hay, the fire, by th.3 time the engines arrived, had acquired 
such headway that it was impossible to extinguish the 
flames, and owing to the limited supply of water, all efforts 
were directed to save the house. As the premises have been 
unoccupied for the last week, the fire was doubtless the work 
of an incendiary. The loss is not half covered by insurance. 
The selectmen have taken the matter in hand promptly, and 
offer five hundred dollars reward for information that will 
lead to the conviction of the parties setting the fire. — North 
Broohfield Journal, Oct. 

That means the reverse, reader, as my experience with 
said town can prove. 

The insurance on the property destroyed is $165. The 
loss is nearer $1,500 than $1,000. 

If some of those persons who are so loud and indignant 
in their condemnation of the despoilers of trees and shrubs 
in the cemetery would desist from walking over and stand- 
ing upon graves and graded lots, they would evince much 
better tast and at the same time be more consistent. — North 
Broohfield ournal. 



168 

How about that mysterious axe, ladder, and saw ? — North 
Brookfield Journal, Oct. 13th. 

I bought and paid for the above mysterious implements in 
a hardware storo in Brooklyn, and expected to be, or to 
have been, in a few days, at my own home, to have them in 
use, and not borrow in my hurrying, building, gathering 
fruit, &c. The ladders were stairs, and the latest issue, and 
expensive. But you keep me at bay. You want the whole 
to burn up. It was God's providence that the fire was 
squelched. 

The witnesses in the case of the Commonwealth vs. Mrs. 
E. B. Hill, were before the Grand Jury, Tuesday. — North 
Brookfield Journal, Oct 20th. 

What caso is there before the Grand Jury? Is it the 
fiend's burniug of my property ? 

Mrs. Hill has been heard from. Sheriff DeLand has re- 
ceived a telegram asking him to protect her house from the 
" fiendish and insatiable mob," and another inquiring if it 
was yet burned. — North Brookfield Journal, Oct. 20th. 

Asking Insurance Agent Deland if my house was burned, 
so that f/te contents were removed, and requesting an anwer 
irnmr dmlely. No reply. 

October 25th. — At George P. Eowell & Co.'s I find a letter 
from North Brookfield. M}^ heart leaps with joy to hear 
from a friend. 

NORTH BROOKFIELD. 

The selectmen have offered $500 reward for the convic- 
tion of the parties who set fire to Mrs. E. B'. Hill's barn some 
time since, and there are lots of folks who think they know 
who did it. Mrs. Hill has disappeared and there is a gen- 
eral desire that she may be found, so that the public 
can know if the grand jury found an indictment against 
her. — Spencer Sim, Oct. 19th. 



169 

Grand Jury found an indictment for what? — for the fiends 
burning my building for a torch-light gathering ? 

Imagine, reader, for a moment my feelings on reading the 
above ! Driven from my hard earned, little cosy home, among 
those with whom not one live being was found I had ever 
seen before, except through knowledge of books. My ex- 
penses more a day than has been my allowance per week at 
home. Aside from what my inheritance gave me, there is 
not a foot of land in my possession but that is teeming 
with sacred associations, that is a society in memory's hall. 
And to think those low minded reporters, banded together 
with the railroad masonic DeBevoise gang, which, on the 
evening after that, to be at DeBevoise's court, in their 
manaical disappointment at not having a chance to gloat, 
persecute, crush, and defame an upright, moral, law-abiding, 
lone, divorced, orphan, educated woman — burned my barn! 
But, reader, not alone in that little cottage where my loved 
children were born, sickened, and died ! Every room, 
every corner and spot an association of those loved, lost, 
beautiful boys. That barn with its many associations, be- 
sides the contents heretofore mentioned, had relics removed 
there not six weeks previous from a chamber in my house to 
give place for a black walnut chamber set bought of and de- 
livered and set up by J. B. Lawrence & Co., Worcester, 
paying $110 for the same, and placing in said chamber a 
chestnut and black walnut set, bought of said Lawrence in 
1865, paying for the same $65, that I have kept sacred, 
which were to be placed in this house and my L room, on 
completion ; which would have been built wall around my 
mowings within the time I have been absent from my own, 
my native soil, and have comforts to make me comfortable 
in my old age. My lumber-, doors with green glass lights, 
windows with four lights of glass, shingles, and every item 
for said building bargained for, and bdl to be delivered from 
Forbush & Co. (and a lumber dealer next door), Worcester, 
cash on delivery. That money I had planned for the pay- 
ment of the above is spent and over $200 more. My barn 
is burned and not one-tenth covered by insurance, to say 
nothing of those sacred relics that money, never, no, never 



170 

could have bought ! And, reader, that barn was set on fire by 
those disappointed fiends who were gloating upon the faree of 
corruption of the law in the power of the ignorant and 
vicious. That will call forth such issues as the above notice 
seek to destroy truth and virtue, to cover their own sins 
and punishable crimes, and as Christ was a victim for simi- 
lar causes, was no more innocent from them than am I to 
day, and as has heretofore been arraigned, belied, falsified 
in every way devisable, because I defend truth, law, justice, 
and mercy. And. reader, for the same I believe, from those 
vicious spirits the above alluded to gang, my life will be 
taken as Abraham Lincoln, John Bunyan, John Brown, 
Jesus Christ, and sundry others of the same type, come to a 
felon's end. Methinks I hear some of my my readers say : 
" How about* that walnut DeBevoise tree." This is just 
how : " Those three valuable trees above alluded to are 
nearer seventy-five years old than fifty — they were my 
father's till within the last twenty years, and he sold a part 
of a walnut grove and pastures to the town — citizens and 
grave lot owners have long desired the removal of the wal- 
nut trees, because ruthless men wander upon graves gather- 
ing them and throwing sticks, clubs, and stones to bring 
the walnuts/down. The fall of 1875, my children, in their 
new white water cemented bricked grave, with slate slab 
lid — some 2| feet down upon top of which was basket, axe, 
and beetle bags, stones here and there upon said lot, where 
the boys had cracked them," <fcc. 

The ladder on DeBevoise's lot against his tree which had 
been shaken. My lot seemed a chosen spot for their refuse, 
&c. Even the man DeBevoise kept more or less to keep his 
lot in good repair, would lay his truck, such as his sickle, 
jacket, basket, and often the fine grass would be placed on 
my monument stand, as well as the decayed flowers and 
toad stools, &c. Two boys also rolling on my sacred grave 
plot not two weeks before I left. I moved those implements, 
the boys went without assistance. I then and there thought 
could my dead boys live and have such beastly natures, I 
should have had reason to have wished them dead. Brewer 
aad Perry had cut all of the walnut trees but those three, 



171 

Mr. Doane promising to cut iiis soon. Barlow — nobody had 
had a chance to tell him his tree was to be cut, though all 
knew he would be glad to have it down, DeBevoiso resisting 
owing, without doubt, in part, it was thought, to keep his son 
from my and other people's lands. 

Scores of times I have given James DeBevoise, when 
asked, permission to gather nuts gladly, for I had great in- 
fluence over him when other teachers had failed. Many a 
time have school recitations been learned with alacrity, and 
committed to memory by my instruction and with the an- 
ticipation of getting bushels of walnuts. At the close of 
school we would hasten to my walnut grove, and those boys 
would shake and gather walnuts, not forgetting to crack and 
eat them, and rolling with laughter and jesting till the 
vaults of heaven would ring with their glee, and not one 
among them enjoyed it more than I ; and those boys must 
remember the many times I have spoken against the walnut 
trees being left in the cemetery where graves were inhabited. 

Elisha Perry told me as he was covering Homer R. Prouty's 
remains near my lot : " That they were going to cut those 
trees clown ; DeBevoise objects, but he will have to submit if 
you complain of them as a nuisance." I was telling him that 
my monument was to be erected the following Tuesday. It 
came Saturday A. M. before that time. I entered my com- 
plaint : the clubing and stoning of that tree — the other two are 
pig walnuts, not gathered. My lot sometimes was filled with 
stones, which had been thrown up to get those walnuts ; this 
fall, the trees bearing well, and the branches filled were over 
my grave. 

I told that committee of selectmen and the respectable 
citizens I could not nor would not permit such performance 
upon my darlings' graves. They all, every one of them, 
agreed with me, and said they ought and should be cut, the 
committee telling me to enter my written protest and com- 
plaint against the same, demanding them to be cut at once, 
as I suggested. According!}' I wrote to DeBevoise, Doane, 
and Barlow, also grave yard committee, which has been 
heretofore printed. 

The committee came not to my assistance, though being 



172 

specially sent for, as my monument was delivered. That 
committee knew well those boughs would have to come off ; 
thus they staid back, ignominiously using me as an imple- 
ment to bring about what they all wished done, but had not 
quite backbone enough to tell De Be. it should be done, 
though not one of them, as they have expressed to me here- 
tofore, had a particle of ministerial respect for what I call 
the simple-minded, pugilistic earthy Gabriel. The young 
man who trimmed those branches had done the same upon 
trees in cemeteries iu other places. Said young man cut the 
branches shorter than the law provides. Said point of law 
I never had investigated, though my walnut trees had been 
trimmed by graveyard committee in 18G7. I have not 
noticed, but they are certainly cut upon my land with more 
of that trespass ; also telegraph ivires and poles have been 
removing branches with trespasser's sickle. Also railroad 
cut into trees out of the line, &c. 

Reader, those walnut trees were not ornamental shrubs. 
They were a hideous nuisance to the sincere mourner and 
sensitive, refined, loving heart ; (but to the coarse, the 
vicious who are ready to filch, and destroy character, grave- 
stones, rob one of their land illegally, and defy humanity iu 
every way thus. We have got the money, you have not, to 
bring a successful issue in court, as money rules, and not 
law and unimpeachable evidence). Siuce the war ! Re- 
member, reader, the different representations in the slips, 
the blackening calumny. The hideous falsification, pur* 
posely to tarnish my name if possible, and shall I not have 
the privilege to vindicate my character thoroughly ? When 
money controls the newspapers — to publish the false repre- 
sentations — and not one line for me would those illegal 
railroad trespassing hordes permit on my part; nor even a 
lawyer is there. But the cents are closing their eyes. Some, 
many of those legal men are iu the ditch of illegal advice, 
as report has it, and is evident by the evading and close ; 
and let E. R. Hill bear the contumely of being arrested and 
imprisoned in a felon's cell, and other warrants, if I should 
break or cut one of the branches that grow over my land. 
Bothwell saying, " They don't hurt your land," &c. I can't 



173 

have law and truth vindicated in North Brookfield, nor 
anywhere else, when the purse can buy men in authority. 
History has not upon record such open violation as I can 
prove in nay railroad case — my false imprisonment case — 
the DeBevoise case for " mutilating valuable trees," <fcc. 
Oh, readers ! stop, see those boys, men and women, throw- 
ing clubs and stones upon DeBevoise's walnut tree ; they 
come dov* n heavily on our darlings' grave. How many sticks 
and clubs there lie that have pelted them down, down in the 
grave ; so low, mamma can't hear their wail ; but she sees 
the clubs and stones are on darlings' grave and plot ; those . 
mortals, seared ("as with a red, hot iron"), now stand on 
darlings' grave, and jump up as they throw the club at 
the DeBevoise tree to get the walnuts the other side. 
Thus they are stamping darlings down ! See the dripping 
upon grave-stones — a blackening stain, that cannot be re- 
moved. But, reader, see DeBevoise ready with his might 
to tarnish, to blacken my character, as you see he has 
already done, for a simple offence — an offence I. would not 
permit to have been done had I known that line measure. 
But, thank God, it reveals Gabriel. 

G. C. Lincoln and family moved into North Brookfield 
some fifteen years since. Said Lincoln, being fortunate 
in being Town Treasurer some seven or eight years, used 
the town's money, without paying interest, during said time. 
Very handy change for starting a grocery and dry goods 
business. Such handy change in time keeps one feeling 
strong. He gains wealth fast. He enlarges his phylacterie ; 
builds and owns a nice house ; buys his young and promis- 
ing son a printing-press. They wax fat, and kick hot. The 
little son was horrified, as well as his father, at my writing 
DeBevoise the letter in this book. When I told the boy 
said letter should be published from polo to pole, the boy 
replied, "That would be. mean," <fec. 

Lincoln has a son named Paul Gabriel DeBevoise Lin- 
coln, as report has it. Paul's father is one of the select- 
men that make the " town's indignation at the mutilation of 
those valuable trees," &c. 

Does George Lincoln remember the times ho and his sis- 



174 

ter and James DeBevoise have gathered walnuts in my 
grove, -without permission as well as with ? Stop and con- 
sider the falso representations that small sheet has sent out. 
You have been weighed in the balance — and are found 
wanting. Selah. 

But as it seems to have pleased some that I should thus 
be held a criminal as if guilty of a hideous crime, and DeBe- 
vois •> catching at this straw of offense to aid the railroad 
Masonic thieves' f-*lso imprisonment, in their tumultuous 
iniquity, he rushes for judgment against me, forgetting 
entirely the passages " forgiven seventy times seven;" "if 
thy brother take thy coat, give him thy cloak also." If he 
strike upon the right cheek, turn the left for another crack ! 
But the graveyard nuisance, the $175 monument, may be 
blackened — the little marker with Willie, Albert, little dar- 
lings Warren, Walter, and the mother's prayer on the other 
side of the little stone ! " Tread softly ! the ground is holy. 
See whose grave she weepeth o'er. Lo, the simple super- 
scription : ' Little Darlings !' — nothing more," Methinks 
DeBevoise says " I'll blacken her character, and compel her 
to surrender her last dollar to us and our aggrandizement." 
Yes, Gabriel, you remind me of a narrow capacity tug-boat 
trying to tug iniquitous crafts to a shore. Tho smoke 
comes dense and dark from the small chimney. Wiry, those 
crafts are heavily laden, with dark, heavy coal weight — the 
black smoke is fanned by the breeze, and a spark is in that 
smoke. The wind wafts it to tho barn. It blazes. Those 
crafts that the tug-boat has just got ashore are in one gang. 
Mrs. Hill we shall clean out to-night, root and branch. Oh, 
no ; God is there in the presence of a few men. The engine 
must be worked. The flames are subdued. And, as if to 
carry out their fiendish longing, through every periodical 
they blaspheme my name. And, readers, how much sin was 
there in those branches being cut a littlo too short, compared 
with the sin of the abstracter of money, the horse-killer, the 
liar and hypocrite, so readily forgiven — if DeBevoise even 
thought they had sinned ? Look at my crime. My name 
enrolled as it is above in items. This, reader, is the way I 
wish for truth to be vindicated. And my crime in having 



175 

the monument men cut those limbs too short was through 
ignorance. But that ignorance shows conclusively what 
manner of spirit dwells in the breast of Gabriel DeBevoise. 
Heaven forbid his being permitted to preach long without 
investigation. Should it not be done, I can speak as a 
prophet that congregational piety will soon be numbered 
with the dead ologies. DeBevoise has never been the man 
to invite me to his church — my old liome. And, readers, a 
scorpion's whips could not drive me into either church in 
North Brookfield till said churches 'bide the covenant obli- 
gations, which are used there when they will, as much as any 
horse jockey does his veracity. I will here, at this point, 
speak of a church discipline case. A. Smith, who w r as ex- 
communicated under the ministry of Christopher Cushing, 
and Mr. Smith's own words to me, that more than a score of 
written sheets of foolscap paper, besides church meetings 
many and often, to try to get the wandering sheep back in the 
fold, all in vain. Thus years passed away, and Smith is still 
without the fold under discipline. Hurrah! the tug boat is 
going to land Smith in the harbor of the church. Smith 
gives $350 towards repairing the old church. The tug boat 
sends him clear in without one word, as report has it, from 
Howe and Whiting, but it's our duty to receive brother 
Smith in our new beginning, our dedication. Let us all ded- 
icate our hearts anew to God, and you without sin throw the 
first stone. How does that compare with the walnut tree 
trimming too short. But there is another point here. 
Mrs. Hill must be subdued and not let that railroad pro- 
ceeding have publicity. We must squelch her, lose no time, 
ere she makes publicity of our traffic. Put up the sails. We 
will outride her in this gale. Yes, reader, that is just the 
reason, and none other. The cause of my imprisonment — 
the cause of Gabriel's low, pugilistic, almost depraved treat- 
ment of me, the past year — to shield that crew that are sup- 
porting him. And I ask prayerfully, beseechingly, ought 
I not have this public way of vindicating my case through 
law, from which I rushed, telegraphing, as I did, in season, 
to Jenks, that morn of that fatal day. That savage pow- 
wow I nipped in the bud. I have told my fugitive tale from 



17G 

the moment I was one mile from my own house till I reached 
my abode in Brooklyn city. And I believe a Judas was not 
a hearer. My name to every one has been E. K. Hill. As 
much a fugitive from North Brookfield as any slave ever 
from southern domain, or Simms in Boston. To thwart this 
diabolical plot of citizens to prevent my being able to set 
forth the North Brookfield illegal proceedings in becoming 
an associate in building the North Brookfield railroad ; 
also taking 6|- per cent, of her valuation for the payment of 
the same. Their noncompliance with the statutes, in the 
taking of my land for railroad bed, their forbidding of my 
removing posts upon my land. They, those ring men, were 
ready to bind me hand and foot by calumny and poverty, 
strip me of my all. And, reader, this truth I send forth to 
vindicate the three issues pending in the courts at Worces- 
ter, where I cannot have the least show of chance with 
those masonic war officers. There is not a chance to stand 
against them, only by this truth being spread, and wise men 
from without to show to the world my justification in vindi- 
cation of the statutes. If North Brookfield can sink their 
town into debt 6| per cent, of its valuation, become an 
associate corporation, rob people of their land as they will 
for their best party pockets, trampling under foot humanity, 
ignoring the statutes in divers ways — if it's North Brook- 
field's privilege to do this, why not every other town in the 
Union? Reader, I demand the statute laws to be enforced, 
and whoever tramples them under foot to be dealt with as 
their crime deserves — ever balancing with justice and 
mercy. 

My book has, through necessity, been lengthened to one- 
third more than purposed, and my expenses also. I was 
home Sabbath day (4th November), at my cottage, for 
clothes and insurance papers, and a few tokens of the loved 
and lost. Oh, destruction ! Oh, sin ! Oh, my God ! why 
oh, why, hast thou chosen me a battle-axe? Why driven 

From the cot of my fathers ; among strangers to dwell? 
cans't Thou, wilt Thou not bring good out of this evil? 
light out of this darkness ? Thou who ridest amidst this 
storm. How bold they talk, and act ! Perchance 'tis meet 



177 

for them to treat me thus ! "They demand my lip keep 
silence ! ! ! ' Thus I answer these dark coarse plots, with 
my pen's diamond point, tracing their awful doings — Thou 
God abuve canst make them retire abashed ! 

" Thy power is far more vast than finite mind can scan. Thy mercy is still 
greater shown to weak, dependant man." 

Sabbath morn 8.0O a. m. I stepped out of the cars in that 
great " Union Depot," at Worcester. Out of it — off. How 
cold, frozen ground, ice spitting snow flakes! How dreary, 
as if all were frozen in the heart. I'll search for a soul 
that ain't frozen, that ain't seared as with a red hot iron to 
get money — who in their haste break down every obstacle that 
will retard their aspirations. They'll crush whether man, 
woman or child ! ! ! Oh, God, keep me, this thy day from 
those maniac hounds — I turn this way and that, to get di- 
rections to a place I have been once before, where I know 
I left souls in God's image some weeks since. 

I ring the bell — a familiar face — the door opens — a wide 
entrance. But oh ! death has borne its suffering victim, who 
opened wide that door for me before .(welcoming me in with 
God's blessing) to that bourne from whence no traveller re- 
turns ! At breakfast table, where the utmost neatness, and 
style with abundance of nice and choice fooc£ with sympa- 
thizing new found friends, giving to me, a stranger while my 
own town neighbors and confederates are stripping, rob- 
bing and driving me, helpless from my own hard earned and 
inherited sustenance with all the contumely they can heap 
on me to cover their own illegal sins, and diabolical shame. 
In going to the above place I pass a livery stable ; there I'll 
apply for a carriage, driver, to convey me to what is left of the 
fiend's fire, my own house. We are off. How cold! before 
one mile the buffalo has to be wrapped tight about me, 
with fleet horse gliding along : the driver too is suffering with 
cold. But the steed is hurried on. Ere we reach the vil- 
lage I think it best to stop at a farmer's residence where 
beast and man can be provided for, &c. 

The chill has done its work, but I must not submit to its 
effects ; I goad myself on for the nearing scene. We are 
there. The driver reins his horse, and waits. 



178 

That warm young Irish heart, speak not, moves not, till he 
is asked. I was surprised — the windows and doors and roof 
of my house remained unburnt. Oh that DeBevcise cour f 
disappointment was " robbed by God's special interposi- 
tion of part of its torchlight jubilee they meant (as Both- 
well told me in the cell) to clear everything out that would 
be a reminder. The man meant to get my last dollar. But 
rea ler, my great work will live as long as the Bible, and 
my persecution as John Brown's, John Bunyan's and many 
others. 

I cannot — cannot attempt this winter to face that ruin, 
and if satan himself had been divested of bis every attribute 
and his mantle had fallen upon a few making themselves 
notable by illegal traffic, who hates the sight of oue who 
will not join, or countenance their bastard estate, and glory, 
I am thus compelled by them to kiss this token, this sacred 
spot, gather a few things to protect me from the cold, and 
ere I get my trunk half filled my door bell rings. I say, 
please go to the other door. As I pass along, I see, oh, hor- 
ror ! the fiend of fiends, that false imp Sylvander Bothwell. 
Young man, rush and lock that door, don't you let that devil 
enter. That's the fiend who assailed me, on my own land with- 
out cause, without warrant, thrust me in a felon's cell to 
gloat his own and others' malicious design, I ordered him 
from my premises. He stays, walks here and there, making 
mock of me, a woman who never violated a statute law 
(only my monument man cut that old walnut tree limbs too 
short) ! and that lying whelp of sin, that trespassing devil 
hanging round me ; there is not a convict in prison on God's 
footstool that deserves that sentence more than the above 
Bothwell. His name defiles the page I write. Is there no 
lav; to keep that trespasser on my premises ? I demand him 
to leave. He with dripping glands says, " you stop, or I'll 
arrest you." Reader, can I not go in to my own house, 
and order this or any other trespasser from my 
premises Sabbath day, without the threat of arrest ? The 
young man passes out. The trespasser says to the young 
man " She's crazy as sl\e can be, she ought to be in the 
hospital." Yes, reader, my telling that man to leave,— I for- 



179 

bade his touching or stepping upon my premises — would bare 
put me in the Insane Hospital ; I should been manacled off. 
That's the state of mind, that the illegal proceeding of the 
railroad iniquity of different dyes have sunk North Brook- 
field in. To be hindered thus, I cannot call to Mr. Haston 
to my father's house, to babies' grave. Oh God, come 
quick with they scythe of justice. Strengthen me, Oh God, 
in the power of thy might to conquer that den of iniquity, 
that marplot of corruption under the banner of Christianity. 
Let them commune and go away from that communion to 
crucify their Lord. As the above man came from that "set 
apart blood" to goad me in my own house, that man had 
my house key during the night of my incarcaration in the 
felon's cell — my drawer was robbed of $70, and that was the 
most trivial offence against me that took' place during the 
twenty hours' incarceration. Do you think that man's hand 
is to be placed upon my shoulder at every flash of his un- 
governable illiterate temper? I ask and demand, as a 
law abiding truthful female citizen, the protection of the 
United States Court, to keep from harm my person, my 
property, from those who are vested in legal authority in 
Noith Brookfield, Massachusetts, who have violated and 
outraged and trespassed the statutes of Massachusetts of 
decency, of humanity ! I am not " Simms " " nor one of old 
Lcgree slaves," " nor Ginx's Baby." But a lad}' or female 
or a woman somewhat educated ; my father was not mov- 
ing from " Dan to Beersheba " ; but owned that great 
farm house and the one hundred and eighty acres of land 
connected with it, with fruit of every variety in our youth- 
ful days, and the forests of walnut and chestnut. The 
hundreds of rock maples — oh those sugar hours ! We child- 
ren had all that earth could give, and those poor menials 
that have come in from other States, " had shelter and 
board in that house without pay, but your welcome boys, 
do the best you can." Some of those recipients are hound- 
ing me to-day. Methinks I hear my readers saying. " Why, 
she condemns the town en masse." Reader, how can I speak 
otherwise? The three selectmen are masons ; they are all 
located within thirty rods of the felons' cell. That man 



180 

spoken of before, has thrust men into the cell in his mad- 
man temper, but they were released in less than an hour, but 
an educated, law-abiding self-respecting person at all times, 
aril in all places a public educator, a newspaper reporter, can 
be thrust into a felons' cell, because she said upon her own 
land a gamblers' funeral horse cannot be hitched to my 
bars. I untied the tie rein ; I did not move a horse, I did 
not speak above my usual tone only when calling to the 
nest bars, and that, in voice for the distance required, and 
no higher. The disturbance was Both well's shouts, seizing 
me and throwing me down on my own land, and carrying me 
off my own property as a beast, and thrusting me in a felons' 
cell. The second time his vile hands have denied my physi- 
cal frame, and agonized my sensitive nature. He still 
continues to prowl and trespass upon my land ; for every 
time of illegal outrage and trespass I demand a legal hear- 
ing. I was driven from Masachusetts for protection in this 
hour of peril ; and Almighty God above guided the fugitive 
E II. Hill to this harbor. Thus the appeal from Jenks and 
Both well, is to be met in the Superior Court. My waving 
the DeBevoise nuisance — "old walnut trees cut to short 
branches " ; is to have hearing. I did not utter one word 
to Bothwell, when he told me he had a warrant for my 
arrest, and another all ready, if I cut a bough from a 
tree hanging over my land. I did not make a sound, no 
more than Christ did, in a similar time. The reason given 
fur his not speaking, is, " that we might have an all 
prevailing plea"; the reason I did not speak, was, I 
was before given into the power of that Bothwell, and 
I knew enough not to speak, knowing the devil was 
desirous to have me, " that he might sift me as wheat;" and 
God was permitting, &c. How about, run away, to telegraph, 
as the dispatches sent, inform the readers. Behold, the 
black, lying scandal those newspaper items gull out ! North 
Brookfield sent news, that, they meant to brand me, call a 
court, and have their own lawyer, without one word on my 
part. Header, see how cut and dried ! As J. Duncan used 
my name maliciously to cover over an error, even so with the 
North Brookfield Railroad Corporation. They don't want their 



181 

fearful violation of theistatutes to be made public, and, as I am 
the only mortal woman outside of the rings 'in that town who 
can report and can tell coherently what has been said in pub- 
lic meetings, &c, this makes me a dangerous person, like 
those spoken of in the Bible. A heavy lawsuit was to be 
brought, forbidding that illegal railroad debt to be pad 
out of the tax-payers' purses, but letting the directors 
pay for their own monstrosity, that was making them o 
great and rich. I have more reason to pay homage and 
respect to the Northampton bank robbers than to the North 
Brookfield Railroad men. That railroad proceeding, if leic 
unchecked and unrebuked, would, or is enough to, bring 
ruin upon any town in the State in the Union, and were it to 
be so left unrebuked it would be far worse than bank robbery. 
I did not pay my tax under protest to get back that dollar. 
That is the handle, reader, to the key that unlocks the bolt, 
and that will bring investigation of that 6§ cents tax on 
North Brookfield valuation, and its becoming an associate. 

I have got to have a lawyer out of Worcester County, lie- 
port has it there are some — oh, what is it ? Advice is not al- 
ways cheap, and if you pay dearly for legal advice, it may be so 
shallow that one will pay more dearly by following the said 
advice than for the counsel fee — at least, that has been my 
experience with attorneys, where that great depot is, since 
the war. I asked Geo. F. Hoar, my old counsel, to aid me 
in law after my incarceration in the felons' cell on the 22d 
of September (said Hoar being only from August to Decem- 
ber older than myself, as he has told me heretofore). Hoar 
imperatively refused, adding that he must be at Washington 
on the 15th, &c. " Yes, but [ thought as you knew 
me, and had some experience in the Stoddard and W. Bail- 
road court," &c. Hoar: "Mrs. Hill, I shouldnot have en- 
tered into that case at all had I not been given to under- 
stand and been assured that it would have been settled without 
trial," <tc. Mr. Hoar was the third different lawyer employed 
on said case, some of Stoddard and Whiting's other counsel 
proving to be masons, and so on. I will here say that 
Hoar's partner is counsel for the town, &c. Whiting has 
told me that " the town's counsel was thoroughly disgusted 



182 

with their proceedings." Beader, I had no more thought of 
having Hoar for counsel than, etc., knowing the circum- 
stances, I asked him, and took witness purposely to have the 
refusal. Hoar is a woman suffragist ; / am not. Neither 
am I a politician. But Hoar's vote at Washington last fall 
made me see, an I understand how things work, since the war 
and woman suffrage promulgation. 

I asked an Irish lawyer the same day to look up the Nye 
trespass, but he did not want part of the job, <fec. ; I also 
asked a promising young lawyer to take my case, sincerely 
desiring him as an advocate ; and I believe he desired also 
to obtain justice in every case of mine at issue, and he ac- 
cepted. The next morning he said his business was going to 
be so great that he could not undertake my case, but was 
desirous of a successful issue for me, which he knew must 
come. Reader, that man had to face a boughten crew, whose 
doings I believe in his heart he scorned as he would the bot- 
tomless pit. Thus, you see, I saw at once his predicament. 
I said then, and there to him that I should never attempt 
to go into court in Worcester City until there were new offi- 
cials — not of the war type, or masons. I wish to bring in a 
few more incidents of recent date. 

At my mother's death her thirds, <fcc, were to be divided. 
Hon. Win. Mixter, Hon. Chs. Adams, Jr., and a gentleman 
from Spencer (his name is gone from me) were legally ap- 
pointed for said purpose. Said division was disappointing 
to my eldest brother at the homestead, said parties not giv- 
ing him what he asked for, and what outsiders, even, thought 
ought to have been his special portion. That notable era was 
on Saturday, May 27, 1867, appointed for my accommoda- 
tion, as I was teaching on Ragged Hill, West Brookfield, 
eight miles off. 

My brother was stirred to the very citadel of his being at the 
said partition. Thus, as I lie on my couch at my own little 
cozy home, I turned this way, that, and the other, I thought 
and thought how I might get that house and yard, &c, into 
my said brother's possession. Accordingly, next morning 
I called on Mrs. Wm. Beech er, before alluded to, telling her, 
that Sabbath morn, my anxiety and desire. Calling ou God 



183 

to bless our every word, Mrs. Beecber said : " Mrs. Hill, 
your great heart is to help, to rescue, let what will betide. 
Your undertaking is a mountainous job, &c. If you can buy 
the doctor out, &c, as you suggest, I will loan you money 
if the doctor wants money instead of your note. I must 
laugh at your noble per adventures ; I'll trust 3-011 with my 
money without security," <fcc. Off I went to see and tell 
Mrs. Lane. Mrs. Lane said : "Oh, my dear child, 
I cau't, I can't advise you, to ; your heart and purpose are 
good, are noble, but I fear, I can't advise you, to, because of 
their previous doings." " Oh, my faithful guide ! have we not, 
is it not, in this time, if I can, a duty, a need, for my said 
brother (drop the past) to get for him, if I can, the posses- 
sion of said house and surroundings. The doctor has a 
good house, &c. ; my sister also, and I, my little cot. How 
different it will ring for my brother in need to say, ' I own this 
house — our father's house.' : Mrs. Lane : " I could not un- 
dertake what you suggest on any consideration. I see 
plainly you are determined to undertake the matter, and 
talk will be vain. I will pray God to guide you, keep you as 
the apple of His eye." At the homestead — my brother at 
his table ; his face covered with his hands — " Good morning 
— blue? Come, I am in for a rescue this holy day. This 
"plucking of corn on the Sabbath,"" the sheep in the ditch," 
&c. Now for a hearing : " Brother, will you give me so 
much for my share and the doctor's (if I can buy it of him) ; 
pay me $100 down ; give me as security for the remainder 
a mortgage on all your real estate at this homestead (also 
pledging, when you wish, that you will give me first chance 
to buy, &c.) for security on the remaining sum." My broth- 
er leaped with exultation at this unexpected ray of hope in 
his gloom. " Yes, I will gladly ; lean give you the $100 
bill (showing it) this instant. But the doctor won't sell to 
you if he should mistrust you and suspect that you thought 
of selling to me. Mrs. Stoddard means to come here. War- 
ren will sell to her, and not to you. Let that part rest." 
" You pledge solemnly the above ?" " Yes ; take the $100 
bill as a bond." " No, not to-daj-. To-morrow morning I will 
take your gig and pacer ; drive over to Ragged Hill ; teach 



184 

my school, and return here after school in the afternoon. 
Then I will go direct to the doctor's office, and strike a trade, 
if possible, and bu\- his share, trusting, in God's own time, 
again to live in this, my father's house. I'm going to church 
this afternoon. Rest in peace till I see you agaiu. Good 
morning." I did attend church in the afternoon, and third 
service also. Monday, 29th, 7 a. m., I was wending my way 
in a gig (pride in pocket ; also $100) to my school-room — a 
wide-awake school that. I got home in the afternoon. At 
the doctor's office — Doctor : " Hallo ! where do you come 
from?" " Ragged Hill." Doctor : " Been in school to-day?" 
" Yes." Doctor : " Mighty, what's up ?" " That's just the 
question. I want to buy your share ; so and so will give so 
much." Doctor : " You may have it. I had much rather 
cut off coupons than till land," &c. " I have not money 
enough to give you all ; here's $100 ; this bank book I will 
make over to you ; the remainder I shall have to borrow if 
you will not take my note." Doctor : " I'd just as soon 
have your note ; we will go this minute down to Nye's (not 
10 rods off) and have the deed made at once." At Nye's 
the deed was made out complete, the doctor's wife signing, 
we went off each to our own abode. Ere I reached mine, I 
met the waiting brother. With quick step we en- 
tered Nye's. Said Nye was surprised to a marve 1 , and said 
" Mr. Tyler, your sister is doing a great thing. Why, this 
sudden, all unexpected move is making (in putting together 
again this property), you worth more by $1,000." My 
brother shed tears of joy, saying, " I know what she is 
doing; the other two would not have helped me to a 'red.'" 
"What a woman you are," says Nye, laughing and writing 
the deed and mortgage. The clock struck eleven just as we 
rose to leave. I did not read my mortgage. I had no thought 
of a mistake. In the morning I left the same under seal 
with Mrs. Beecher. She smilingly says, "you heroine," &c. 
The next morning my brother with his fiery steed takes me 
and leaves me at Ragged Hill »chool-house. Next time at 
kome Nye tells me of my sister coming to him in great 
wrath about the above proceeding. The doctor, feeling 
sorry, supposed I was going to keep it myself, &c. Nye 



185 

adding, that day alone was your success. (That sister's son 
is just so yet.) In December, 1874, owing to misfortune, 
my brother was uuable to meet my payments or pay in- 
terest. I was willing all should remain, wishing him to 
have the mortgage and note acknowledge interest on in- 
terest, as I had been sick — not earning for nearly two years. 
The Duncan slander had cost heavily (by having counsel of 
R. Beecher and the Bartlett recommendation). I was need- 
ing money when at Worcester. My brother told me to have 
that mortgage made as I desired, giving me writing for its 
security. Bacon was not at his office. Knowing J. Henry 
Hill, I showed him said mortgage. He said the mortgage 
was only on an undivided portion of my mother's thirds. 
According to my statement, I was not secured for one-third 
of the dues. I was astounded. Reader, I never had read 
that mortgage. I went back to P. C. Bacon's office. He 
tells me the same; sends me to the Probate Court-house for 
records of the divided thirds made by before-mentioned 
gentlemen, which I had bought and sold specifically. 
Stevens and Clerk searched a full day in vain; they see- 
ing the court appointment for said division. At last Mr. 
Stevens and Bacon told me to go home to Nye, and get the 
papers. I went. Nye was confused; knew nothing about 
it now, and he should not think anything about it! "You 
won't? I guess Peter C. Bacon can make you think, as 
that gentleman sent me here for the same." Nye — " Did 
Bacon send for the paper.-;?" "He did, sir. The divisions 
I have paid lor, &c, niu.-t be defined in record without 
delay. Your blunder, or ignorance, has placed me in finan- 
cial ruin, if the parties concerned should act a thousandth 
part as mean as you have." Nye searched here and there. 
He knew the divisions — how I bought and sold. Mixter is 
dead. " If the doctor had the mortgage on the homestead, 
as you have, it would not be necessary to find the papers." 
"Sir, it's my mortgage, and 'tis necessary." "I will look in 
the morning, and come to your house with information." 

The next day he takes Dr. Tyler to Worcester, to P. C. 
Bacon, and said the parties thus agreed. A fearful fabri- 
cation of his own. Bacon knew it. Bacon mado him 



186 

measure the bounds of land. I had bought and paid for 
the half, house, &c. ; and Bacon, in December, 1874, made 
the conveyance. Reader, you ought to have seen that little 
bantam Nye out with his compass, measuring land in the 
freezing cold. The bantam urged said brother to let the 
doctor have the mortgage and pay me up, as I wanted 
the money so much. The transfer was negotiated then and 
there, Bacon thinking the money better for me. Oh, oh, oh J 
Bacon, how little you can know what it is to be in somebody 
else's place. The doctor has now his long desire, and I 
wronged most fearfully! B. Nye has stopped not in his 
every move to take everything he can get in his pig-eye 
aspirations upon .mine for his and a few others' emolument. 
Header, see that eighty-year-old sending Scotchmen, Italians 
and Irishmen upon my land, to get stones I have piled for 
my own use, ro fill up and bridge up the railroad bed, 
&g. The remainder hereafter. Reader, look at A. Smith 
again — why his way, and none other. His store seems like 
a dice-box. Your eye would be weary to see how often his 
mortgage deeds are advertised. Step into his store a minute. 
His head a peck measure might encase. His hair being 
like the negro, only grey, with great abundance. He has 
very social, attractive ways — laying one hand into the other 
inside up, sort of a move, with a phthisicky cough, standing 
between counters to greet the comers in. " Walk into my 
parlor, said the spider to the fly." Oh, you illiterate man, 
soon the mortgage sells you out. How the greeting to- 
day? Ben Dean is off, moving buildings. He leaves $100 
with his wife, to pay to said Smith on account. She leaves 
it, comes direct to my house with her eldest daughter that 
I have been fitting for a teacher. She tells me of paying 
that $100 that morning. Smith, in his hurry, don't make 
minute of it, and a long, tedious law-suit is the consequence, 
costing both a number of hundred dollars. The tax bills 
speak loudly of his wealth. He is the man who told me to 
sit down in town meeting, when 1 whisperingly asked him 
to count the vote, instead of yea and nay, because of the 
illegal votes. " I tell you sit down, or an officer will come 
and put this woman out of the hall." Reader, remember I did 



187 

not go in or out iliat hall without Cons. Lombard. When Lom- 
bard and I were in the ante-room he said he saw the boys 
and others vote, and he had seen it many times before. 
"But, oh, Mrs. Hill, 3-011 see how they feel towards you — 
don't, for God's sake and mine!" Didn't I dig for parts un- 
known till he cooled off. Then, to see that " dice-box" on my 
land, to appraise it! J. E. Porter, that can't influence, 
because he don't want to, that brother-in-law, double distilled, 
to pay for my hay, that horse ate, that drew the coal, 
that lay in house Barlow built, who owns one of those 
trimmed walnuts. And I ain't afraid to guess that Barlow 
will prove to have a soul of dimensions. 

J. E. Porter sold some building lots from said Barlow lot 
at a fabulous price, and then called on the town to lay out a 
road before said house-lots, and demurred that he did not 
have three times allowed him for land for said road, though 
said road was enhancing the value of his estate thousands. 
That man appraising mylaud that is cut in that fearful way,as 
the profile tells the reader. See him and Gabriel at a Chicago 
Christian gathering— so pious, so ready to do good in the 
vineyard of the Lord. Pieader, let me here take y^ou to the 
Genett farm, where Sandy-flash steals from one to give to 
another. Both forgetting, of course, that a sister in Christ 
they have left behind out of the fold in North Brookfield, 
without one call to get her in the fold again ; but we will 
strip her fleece all off clean, send her naked bleating into the 
cold world. And we'll have to help spread the Gospel with 
what we can get from her fleece, ttc. DeBevoise, &c, God 
is not mocked. Your prayers there were as sounding brass 
and tinkling cymbals at Chicago — right from North Brook- 
field, Mass., not your native land, but vrine, from which I have 
been driven, to find shelter from the fleecers and wolves. 
And the three last-named, are they not co-workers in the 
illegal traffic set forth in this book ? That I cry in agony of 
soul for help, for guidance in my need, in a stranger's home! 

Eeader, back to November 4th. I hustled a few things 
more into my trunk, the driver doing the most. Thus was I 
robbed of a few hours' — in my house of mourning peace 
by Bothwell, the trespasser. No hell was ever described 



188 

that could give him justice. The next morning, at Worces- 
ter, when arranging my trunk, the driver tings the bell, and 
leaves my four babies' locket — my small amount of jewelry, 
that I was just trying to think where I laid them, when 
Both well met my gaze on my forbidden ground. 

Not having my policy, and having my mail sent from 
North Brookfield, November 2d, in which was a letter from 
the insurance company dated October 4th, saying my policy 
would cease the 24th, m. My premium and policy I own, 
expires April 1st, M., 1881. Luther Deland, agent, the tele- 
graphed in this book you remember, &c. On said letter read, 
in print, if not taken out in ten days, return to said office. 
Saturday eve'g, Nov. 3d, 4.30 p.m., I take the steamboat forW". 
Nov.5, 1 enter, present myself — and such audacity — the blood 
mounts high as I write. Sum it up thus : " We will pay 
the insurance on the barn, as you are a great loser, after 
we held a meeting, Wednesday next, but we can't protect 
your house, if it is vacant," <fcc, " airy longer." " Gentlemen, 
when I left my house, I expected to return to the same in 
less than two weeks, my health and other circumstances 
connected with the book to be soon issued prevented." On 
the 13th of October, 5 p.m., I heard of my loss ; it crushed 
me again to hear ; omnipotent and omniscient power alone 
sustained me. I tried in vain to hear from Luther Deland. 
I will here relate an incident. In 1850 (something), Mr. Hill 
had bought part of a nice beef filling a barrel with choice 
roasts, steak, and so on, setting said barrel above the well, 
against a five foot embankment, to freeze. One morning, 
with his lantern, he went to said barrel for steak for the 
family breakfast. When, lo ! the barrel was tipped over 
empty. A thief, not two legged but four, had been there. 
A roast bone — he looks farther — he sees fresh mounds here 
and there, he digs up one, it's his meat. A dozen would not 
count the new "Jog graves." He comes in b}- being called 
— "Is that steak coming for breakfast?" The proprietor 
enters with a gnawed roast, hands it to me with a mad dis- 
may — " It's the best I can get this morning." Aloud ha, ha! 
came from my empty shell, the combination scene just 
made. Lloydy saying, hurriedly, " Grandpa's dog did not 



189 

do that, papa, I know, it was some starved cur, wnsn't it, pa- 
pa?" " Yes ; some poor cuss that keeps a dog half fed," &e. 
The dog's coming was watched for ; before noon he came 
round, took a cursory view of his new market field and pro- 
ceeded to uncover, pawed out a chunk heavy as himself, to 
all appearances, and marched off boldly, cross lots and 
other ways, Mr. Hill following in the distance. The dog 
brought up «at Chauncy Edmunds' cottage house where 
Luther Deland lived, in quite small, close apartments. Thus 
his dog had a good sumptuous store filled with stolen meat 
for future need. It wasn't paid for. No, that was carelessness, 
like leaving my watch, 1875, on the recitation table since, &c. 
I told Mr. Hill then, when the dog proceeding which was a type 
and shadow of something to come, should be fulfilled, I hoped 
to be able to understand the riddle. Mr. Hill thought the 
barrel of meat returned to him would be the understanding 
for him. Reader, how about this insurance policy, why is 
Deland so still and silent, when in agony ©f soul I tele- 
graphed him to take in his special custody my house and all 
therein from those, or that unsatiated mob. He has of late 
been with DeBevoise. Is DeBevoise tugging him, too ? Luther 
Deland and wife left the old church and went to the Union 
when DeBevoise first came to North Brookfield. That lost 
r in DeBevoise's pronounciation was more than they could 
endure, &c. I will just say I liked DeBevoise's sermons first 
so much, I did not miss the r. I have not been able not 
to miss it of late. For instance, when he says in school, 
" Childwin it is a gweat thing to have yow name enwolled in 
pwint." 

As to my house being unoccupied, it has been vacanu 
by my absence from the same twelve weeks at a time teach- 
ing — four, five, sis, eight, ten weeks, a common thing. And 
never before as now left unoccupied with the uninsured 
value, my income, my all. And the vandals have driven me 
from my own home. Their name ought to be the serpent's 
walking as the Bible tells about instead of crawling. 

The insurance agent said he would recommend me to go 
next door or somewhere. " Sir, your deal does not meet 
mj comprehension, you wish to put off your insurance blanket 



190 

— leave my house unprotected against the mob in North 
Brookfiekl, which it is your duty to investigate and bring 
the culprits to justice. But your agent there is not tending 
to business as he did in the Duncan's fire," &c. " What 
meaneth it?" I see, sir, what it means. The rabble want to 
destroy the rest and not have me get one cent. That is the 
cut and dried plan. My house has double the value in it 
that it had when insured. My barn and contents not one 
tenth insured. My farm income is all gone, the labor is 
paid for that had done the hard labor. I demand you, as 
recipient of my premiums and policies paid you, that you 
take charge of said property, from which 1 am driven for 
safety to my life and character." The rest I leave for a fu- 
ture time. 

You cannot fail to see the hang together of the nests to 
destroy whoever questions their right to take rough shod, 
whatever they wish. My wood in small piles here and there, 
if not stolen, those walnut tree butts as fallen. My L not built, 
my barn gone, and my many well directed plans defeated, 
driven out from my house among strangers. And with fiendish 
glut they are reaching for the last penn} r . The Norway spruce 
about my tomb, just as they were felled, if they had been left 
standing, Mr. Sampson's barn and house must have been 
burnt. The money all used up. That those repairs and addi- 
tions would have been made had it not been for the satanic 
designs and acts that came of the North Brookfield Railroad, 
whose treacherous illegality cannot be equalled in history. I 
appeal again to every man and woman to aid in showing up 
the false glitter of those men rushing themselves into 
notoriety on ill gotten gains. 

I ought to have related an incident which took place 
March 28 or 29th, 1871. The day after that Duncan notice 
I was at Hartford, Connecticut, at Catherine Beecher's 
Seminary, where I was expected as a teacher. On reaching 
said seminary, I found that the week previous Miss Catherine 
Beecher had transferred said position to a niece, Miss Mary 
Beecher, thus that prospect was at an end. Miss Beecher 
urged me to spend the night with them, but desiring to learn 
some facts connected with Duncan, &c, stopped at the Allyn 



191 

House. I was a guest at the Allyn House, Hartford, where 
my name can be found registered. During my stay in said 
hotel Augustus Smith and daughter and some others, saw 
mo, between the hours of twelve and on<>, midnight, walking 
insanely about J. Duncan's premises ; it was heralded from 
Dan to Beersheba, for the benefit of Jim and family, to 
cover their sins. After the prairie tire slander spread, it was 
told by Robert Beecher much to my chagrin; I was certainly 
in Hartford, Connecticut, that night, and he could not for 
his life see how I could be in North Brookfield. Jim and 
Augustus, finding that would not work out, Jim drove round, 
saying it was his maid out listening to the band in the town 
hall His maid's figure is as much like mine as an elephant is 
like an antelope, nevertheless, reader, that is the goggles and 
brain of North Brookfield, when they wish to start a " high" 
of their peculiar caste. And never in my life did I ever step 
or encroach, out of season, or out of place, upon a spot, 
place or thing. My uprightness is unimpeachable. The 
falsifications of that marplot of iniquity alleged to my name 
are their own monstrosities by birth, and upon their own 
shdulders at last " roost." 



November 3d, 1877. 
North Brookfield Journal News. 

" Mrs. E. R. Hill shortly issues a pamphlet containing an 
account of her wrongs." 

November 10th. 

" Mrs. E. R. Hill was in town last Sunday." 

" Mrs. E. R. Hill was in town Sunday. She is writing a 
book, shortly to be published, which will give the author's 
opinions concerning ' matters and things' which have tran- 
spired in this town during the past twenty years or so." 



I was home said Sunday ; just hoping I could see my 
ruins, get some clothes to wear, get baby's hair, and insur- 
ance policy, and some money I-had written for to one who 
would not have (nor never before when asked) refused, had 
it not been for this crucifixion hour 1 I came home alone as 



192 

soon as I could venture with health sufficient to meet the 
sight you had made and the destruction of my hard earn- 
ings. There were many choice, sacred, useful, necessary 
articles in that barn, having placed them there till that room 
was built. Had you come and tendered me $500 for those 
specific articles, I should have said : " Go ! beggarly stone 
hearts ; go your way !" — That $500 is not included in my 
estimate. The town has offered $500 reward. To me it seems 
the public's farce to cover that sin — will it be uncovered if 
they can help it, like the Jas. Duncan case ? 

"We'll clear Mrs. Hill out; she will have no money to 
rebuild." Another incident right here : My man, Robert 
Morse, after that felon court, was fairly beset, to his disgust 
and indignation, while waiting with carriage at the Town 
Hall during that farce court. " Great stylo, eh ? " " Where 
does Mrs. Hill get her money?" "Hurrah for stjde I" 
"Who foots the bill? " &c, etc., ft'om old heads and young. 
After his day's work, Tim Clark, Alf. Bartlett, and other 
" Cheap freight ! " railroad men, would hail him thus : 
" Does Mrs. Hill pay you ? " " Where does she get her 
money? " &c. 

Many others asked that man the same impudent ques- 
tions. It seems to me to have been their preparatory ar- 
rangement to clean my buildings out, and be certain I had 
no place to live, and no money to meet my cases in court ! 
One paper issued some one outside " burnt the bam to get 
up sympathy." How transparent a subterfuge, to try to 
cover that guilt! What sympathy is going to give me 
my lost, lost property ? Oh, you fiends of sin ! Await 
your doom ! God's time, not mine ! 

As Morse was driving home from Mrs. Ayres' rowan 
mowing lot, Bothwell walks in front of the span, saying, 
" Morse, did you cut those branches for Mrs. Hill?" "I 
did not." " Who did ?" " You can ask Mrs. Hill." The 
whip cracks, the span start and so does B. ! 

In crossing and recrossing the East River, while overhead 
the rolling wheels stretches from column to column the 
cable, that is now spanning the river, and the boat 
crowded with passengers, at all times of day, I always press 



193 

to tho forward part of the boat, that I may see and learn 
what men cannot convey with the tongue. The thoughts 
that crowd into my brain in this " harvest time" would fill a 
volume. Oh, young man (just stepping outside the chain), a 
step more, and you would go down, down into that leaden 
water — while the leaden sky overhead would seem that not 
one ray of hope could be sent for your rescue. Not so with 
my brother— whom you look so much like — the water he 
stepped into, with seven others, was clear and, transparent. 
The sun shone bright on that June afternoon. Everything 
was as clear and bright as the day star on high. That step 
of that loved brother put on his immortality the 28th of 
June, 1854. I am on a sick-bed in that very house — with a 
baby eighteen days old I am fugitive from to-day. John 
Hill, with my husband, comes to my bedside — they take 
•my hands : " Elizabeth, keep calm, keep calm, for Albert is 
no more ! He was drowned about two o'clock while bathing 

with Doctor and Lawyer , and others." Peace ! 

'tis the Lord Jehovah's hand that blasts our joys in death ! 
Midnight, and that beautiful, manly, lifeless form is in 
father's parlor, not forty-eight hours since he crossed the 
same threshold full of life and soul. June 30th the town is 
en masse, as with solemn tread they bear that noble youth of 
twenty years to hi3 dry grave. They halt in front of the 
Hill cottage; a table is placed beneath the front window; 
the casket is taken from the hearse and placed on the table, 
for his sister, Mrs. Hill, is wrapped up, in the old arm-chair, 
at that window ; the lid is removed, and that red-cheeked 
brother lays as if asleep, just ready to smile. Oh, Death ! 
thou hast the fairest of the flock! 

July 4th, 1854 — midnight. I am dreaming. A fearful 
hailstorm pelting the windows as if they must crush them. 
I awaken, my eyes open ; the room, with its white curtains, 
is as light as fire could make it. I shriek. The house is in 
flames ! " Mr. Hill — Lloyd — we are on fire ! — the house is 
on fire !" My nurse, with the babe in her arms, gets off my 
bed in bewilderment ; she moves here and there senseless. 
I get off the bed, and with maniacal strength open wide tho 
outside door, and screech, " Fire ! fire !" I see that the old 



194 

Dana meeting-house is one blaze. Lloyd is pulling me back. 
" Mother, you'll die ! you'll die ! Come in till we can get 
you out ! Do, mother, do !" The cinders and sparks have 
set our house on fire ; our windows are cracking ; my bed 
blanket, on the footboard of my bed, has caught; I grasp it* 
with a hymn book on the carpet I put the fire out, and wrap 
the blanket about me, (that blanket is still in that house if it 
has not been stolen) ; in my sick-robe and slippers, and the 
blanket ; Lloyd leads me out, his little arms around as far as 
he could reach, my limbs reeling me like a drunken man* 
he lays me down under an apple-tree, away from cinders and 
sparks, ruDS back and brings pillows and blankets, leaving 
me upon them, and with kisses said "Don't die, mama, don't 
die !" " Lloyd, God will keep me." " I'll go and carry 
that Bible (a large beautiful Bible I gave him as his seventh 
year's birthday present) on to grandpa's mowing, every- 
thing else as fast as I can. Rest and live, mama." That 
noble boy is ten years old (the one that weighed three and a 
quarter pounds all dressed). He would rush to me every 
time he came back from grandpa's mowing, looking, off! 
Once he stopped ; " Papa has fainted ; they have brought 
him too. I told him to sit still on his trunk ; he can't do a 
thing. He's as white as you are, mamma. A pretty time to 
faint, ain't it, mamma '?" With a kiss he bounds off, soon 
reappearing with some men and a door. They place the 
door on rails, with bed, and thus I am laid on the door and 
carried by six men into Mr. Lewis Whiting's house. I did 
not speak, nor could not till the following afternoon ; I knew, 
but could not speak. After sleep, when waking, I called 
for my baby. Llody, kissing me : " I'll bring brother from 
Mr. Fullum's as soon as they will let me — he is asleep and 
well, mamma. The house ain't burnt up, only the windows, 
and the carpets under the windows, the roof and not much ; 
oh mama, rest, sleep, do." That precious, faithful, loving 
son ; that was beyond his years in every way ; he could 
tell the tests, different parts of sermons with accuracy. 
The winter he was four years old, in school, Dr. Snell (com- 
mittee) visiting the school, in talking to the scholars, wanted 
to know if there was a boy or girl in the school that could 



195 

repeat the Fourth Commandment, to rise and repeat it. No 
one seemed to know anything about it ; Llody, in one of the 
lowest seats rises and repeats the Fourth Commandment 
word for word, and sits down. Dr. Snell was affected 
to tears — " Llody you are a promising boy, God bless you ; 
children, Lloyd's mother instructs him and euides him, and 
the seed there sown will spring up into everlasting life ; let 
us pray." Dr. Snell, Dr. Cushing, Rev. Win. Beecher, — all 
were faithful in the promised charge over me and my house- 
hold. DeBe. has not been at my door but once, since his 
wife's death, and then there to ask me to contribute towards 
graveling the walk around his grave plot, as one side was my 
walk. I attempted to speak at that time of the desecration of 
graves, in the picking of walnuts, &c; he walks right off with- 
out the least notice, "Briefly, I will let you know as soon as I 
can what your amount to pay will be." I was perfectly dis- 
gusted with him that moment. "You want my money and that 
is all you care for ; my soul, or the dead bodies of my children 
is of no account." I have been at babies' grave and he came 
to his plot with somebody. I see enough, and I certainly 
hope and pray God's time will remove DeBevoise, so that 
his remains will not ever lie by my dead children, and where 
my right is to be laid in brick vault when killed by the 
mob ! I have said, and will pen here. I hope DeBevoise 
will be buried on his native land, if such place can be found, 
for such a pugilistic spirit as he possesses must have a great 
amount of phosphorus in his carcass enough perhaps to set 
the very earth on fire, and thus commence that great read 
about day ! Thus the very earth through DeBevoise will 
burn mine, and me first. 

I wish to speak of my little cottage-home, subject to 
another incident. In spring time of 1868, during vacation, I 
had been at Worcester spending some days (in said city where 
I have purchased for the last twenty years ■&%■ of my neces- 
saries, not including groceries. The day after returning 
home on one of those tours, after performing my daily 
round at home, after ablution — on my sofa for rest, — a 
strong smoke scent came into my room. I up, and pulled 
the curtain, east. The smoke is rising around my tomb. I 



196 

rush below, take a pail of water, broom, screeching, fire, fire i 
Daguerrian Car j is burniug raspberry -bushes and brush. One 
of the most windy days of spring ; the flames leave that pile 
and rush on to my territory within three feet of my tomb, and 
that simple man back of the flames striking to put out the 
running fire. I shout, " for God's sake, come here and don't 
let it reach these fir trees over my dead boys." The neigh- 
bors rush with brooms and shovels ; and when subdued, I 
said to Cary, " how came this fire ? " " Cary was burning 
brush, &c." "Burning brush such a windy day as this ?" Cary: 
" Yes, burning brush such a windy day as this." A man that 
knows no more than to do that, ought to have a guardian ! " 
That killed me, Cary will hunt me down till he dies for this 
truthful suggestion. Had I not been home that day no 
power could have saved my buildings because of the Norway 
Spruce trees. 

Thus I have been set on fire : First, on the northwest side ; 
second, on the southeast side ; third, on the south side, 
nine feet from my dwelling-house — the distance between 
the house and barn. Reader, you must see their next flank 
movement must be north of the house. The insurance com- 
pany, whose policy I have in my possession, did their best 
to uncover that house — throwing it unprotected into that 
savage mob's power, which, I feel in my inmost soul, they 
long to bring to the same ashes as the barn. I have not a 
red cent to cover the loss. That their purpose and design 
to ruin me is rampant, is apparent as noon day. See, right 
from the communion comes trespassing Bothwell on my 
land, to goad me to madness, as his vile, lying tongue de- 
monstrated. Header, will you permit, in this year 1877, as 
treasonable conduct as can be found recorded in 1777 ? 
Southern slavery has been denounced; the battle fought, 
the victory Avon. The illiterate negro was permitted to vote 
who could not read or write ; illiterate and unprincipled 
men were hustled into office until our land cries, as with the 
blood of Abel, for the souls crushed in this Northern Con- 
federacy by malpractices of the statutes, of humanity and of 
decency. Reader, I appeal to you for assistance and pro- 
tection against those malpractices of the law in North Brook- 



197 

field and Worcester, where not a human look of chance for 
truth and statute laws against those moneyed men of my 
property are gathering sustenance to swamp me in financial 
ruin. 

Oh, could you see that railroad board, riding in their 
stolen pomposity, taunting me with their employed tools 
(men). For instance, that North Brookfield bastard 
railroad runs so many trains per day, they stop on that 
four mile route as some of the pop-corn swells desire- take 
on baggage and let off the same, take on individuals and let 
off the same — as said railroad ring accommodations may 
demand. (The free rides come hereafter.) Coming up from 
Worcester one time, the train we were to meet at East Brook- 
field, an accident at Palmer despatch says, " start soon." We 
had waited more than an hour previous to the dispatch. I said 
to the man informing, " I will go to the store to pay a small 
bill; have I time?" &c. "Yes, they are at Palmer, you 
will have ample time." I went out, the distance I had to go 
was about twenty rods. The train immediately starts ; the 
conductor, &c, seeing me leave the car ; my store packages 
in car. I called for the train to stop, it being their practice 
for their ring. Nothing but laugh and hoot. Freman Walker 
roaring louder than the rest, as report has it. And such 
a jollification as that made in North Brookfield for a month 
pen cannot describe. That train due arrived in less than 
fifteen minutes after. 

Another. After my imprisonment, I was coming up from 
Worcester— sick, just able to move — I dropped asleep in the 
car. The shout, " Change cars for North Brookfield," &c, 
roused me ; it being the long express train, I was helped off 
by passengers at the freight-house. The conductor mnst 
have seen me, but he starts, as report has it, in two seconds 
and leaves me, the only passenger ; and then another ha, ha! 
" Miss Hill left again " — a perfect pow wow. And Frank 
Drake has told, report says, I swore so and so. Reader, I 
said nothing, but asked to have my packages put into one } 
as I was very sick and might drop them, which was kindly 
bound together ; two men urging the chances to carry me 
home for $1.00 and $1.50. I thanked them, and said "perhaps 



198 

the foot exercise may be a recuperative, and the pleasant 
night is before me. Good evening, gentlemen." The stories 
that the railroad company sent out would fill a volume. 

Header, is there need of another Christ to redeem that 
Sodom of sin ? You cannot fail to see those seditious beg- 
gars in power tramping a self-respecting and law-abiding 
woman with the most savage cruelty ever known in a civil- 
ized community. I ask you to do all in your power to aid 
me in vindicating the five different legal issues in this book, 
that the parties may be held to statute law and justice. As 
to my being a home-body. The citizens there, for the 
past few years, know nothing of my business, nor of my 
goings or comings. They are not my associates ; I instruct 
them when employed. 

The North Brookfidd Nexus has two attempts at suicide 
within twenty rods of the three churches during the month 
of October, 1877. And spiritualism has again established 
itself this said October, as in 1856, the time of the Waldo 
notoriety. There were at this era of Waldo, a Levi Damon 
and wife, and Calvin Hoyt and wife. Hoyt's wife enticed off 
Damon, and they live together as husband and wife. The 
forsaken Hoyt man and the forsaken Damon woman live 
together as husband and wife in North Brookfield's midst, 
in regular standing. A regular swap. 

Big Shop Notables. — Patrick Kellogg and wife were 
brother and sister, — now husband -and wife; their father 
and mother being widower and widow. How does that 
compare with Fanny Fern's daughter and her father-in-law? 

Monday evening, November 5th. — On the steamboat for 
New York. The cabin berths are all full except two top berths. 
I stay in the main saloon room. The wind is almost a gale. As 
soon as it is light enough to be out on deck I am there. The 
billow's foam sends forth spray with savage grandeur, and 
the cold, dismal looking waters are rolling up dense, black 
clouds, enveloping the sky in the rear with threatening aspect. 
Thus the last look on Massachusetts' horizon was tempest- 
uous wind clouds, and as the waves headlong plunge and writhe 
in agony, a perfect hell of waters, tumbling like the sweep of 
destiny, rolling the clouds from its brink mountain high, 



199 

leaving my native land in dark, deep oblivion. I walked to 
the side of the vessel, to the wheel cabin ; the waves surge 
high, I bow my face down that the spray may wash it clean. 
It seemed as if it was God's opportunity thus to baptize me 
alone with the foam of the billow. And as I walked to the 
front of the deck, the pilot was pacing rapidly, as if to keep 
from freezing. My thought, my happiness on the water, I 
will not pen in this book — " Deep calleth unto deep." And 
what are we that hear the questions of that voice sublime ? 
" Yes, what is all the riot man makes ; bold babbler, what 
art thou ?" 






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