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"We have heard with our ears, O God, our fathers have 
told us, the noble works that Thou didst in their days and 
in the old time before them." 

" Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so 
great a cloud of witnesses ... let us run with patience 
the race that is set before us." 


This story of my mother's family was set 
down by her originally only to recall it to my 
mind when I might no longer listen to it as it 
fell so often from her own lips. It was writ- 
ten in the intei-vals of her ill-health, without 
copying or revision, and was not intended for 
publication. For this reason, she has dwelt 
more at length upon the history of her own 
family life than upon that of her sisters, and 
has purposely omitted all but a slight reference 
to the grandchildren and the events of later 
years, her intention being to record only what 
was outside my memory, leaving the rest to 
some other pen. The story, however, has 
proved to be of so much interest to the other 
members of the family that she was expecting 
to review it with me as soon as possible, in 
order to prepare it to be printed for them. Her 
sudden illness and death cut short her plans ; 
but I have carried them out as closely as I 


could, and the little book is printed very 
nearly as she wrote it. Any errors or inac- 
curacies are mine and not hers. 

It has seemed to me that there could be 
no more fitting memorial of my mother 
among ourselves, than this story. Its style 
is appropriate to the subject and character- 
istic of herself — forceful, yet full of tender 
sentiment, ready wit and apt quotation of 
Scripture; while through it all, quite uncon- 
sciously to herself, there shine her cheery 
hopefulness, her rare unselfishness, and her 
beautiful faith in God. Since my father's 
death her health had been very much better, 
and she was looking forw^ard to years of com- 
fort; but, in December, 1908, she was sud- 
denly seized with a serious heart trouble, 
and after a distressing illness of about three 
months, which she bore with her own brave 
patience, on the morning of February 27, 
1909, she went to join her beloved. 

For those of us who have known her won- 
derful personality, no memorial is needed to 
increase our love and admiration of her; but 
to the younger members of the family, whose 
memory of her may be slight, I hope that this 



little book may give a glimpse of the beauty 
of her life, as well as of the noble souls whom 
she so worthily represented and whose blood 
we are proud to share. 

"They climbed the steep ascent of Heaven 
Tlixough peril, toil and pain; 
O God, to us may grace be given 
To follow in their train." 

S. W. D. 


I WISH to preface this memorial by a little 
sketch of Cornwall, especially those parts 
of it most nearly connected with our family 
history. I have gathered the materials for 
it from a little book on Cornwall, by Mr. 

The long coast-line of Cornwall, the most 
southern and western county of England, has 
been, like Italy, compared in shape to a 
Wellmgton boot, the iron heel of which is the 
mass of serpentine rock which forms the south- 
em point of the Lizard, and the foot that part 
which lies betw^een Mounts Bay and Land's 
End. The instep is at St. Ives Bay, and the 
body of the boot constitutes the main por- 
tion of the county, the highest part toward 
the eastern end forming the Bodmin moors. 
Along the northern coast, the mural cliffs, 
against which the Atlantic rollers forever 
break, are in marked contrast to the tamer 
and more sylvan scenery of the south and 
west shores ; while across the low-lying lands 



between St. Ives and Mounts Bay the sea 
often threaten to meet in the sprmg tides. 

The climate of Cornwall, owing to its 
situation, is so remarkable as to deserve no- 
tice. The month of January at Penzance 
is as warm as at Florence or Madrid, and 
July is as cool as at St. Petersburg. There 
is scarcely a country in the world with a cli- 
mate so mild and equable. 

The people are "ardent and vivacious, 
self-reliant and versatile." It is no uncom- 
mon thing for a Cornishman to build his own 
house, make his own shoes, be both fisher- 
man and miner, and, possibly, small shop- 
keeper besides; and wherever the Cornish 
miner emigrates, he is pretty sure to take 
the lead in enterprise and danger. 

Wilkie Collins says: "As a body of men 
they are industrious, intelligent, sober, and 
orderly, neither soured by hard work, nor 
depressed by harsher privations" ; and the 
old poet Taylor, in 1649, writes: "Cornwall 
is the compleate and repleate Home of 
Abundance, for high, churlish hills and 
affable, courteous people. The country hath 
its share of huge stones, mighty rocks, noble 



free gentlemen, bountiful housekeepers, strong 
and stout men, handsome and beautiful 

Many curious old customs linger in Corn- 
wall, among them the ceremony of "cutting 
the neck," or last few ears of corn at harvest 
time, the lighting of bon&es on the hills 
at St. John's Eve, and the "furry" or Flora 
dance at Helston, on the eighth of May. 
Among the peculiar dishes of the Cornish 
cuisine, prominent is the pasty, the almost 
universal dinner of the working class. It is 
a savory compound of meat and potatoes, 
inclosed in a crescent-shaped crust ; but one 
must be a Cornishman to appreciate this 
dish thoroughly. The variety of pies is truly 
marvelous. It has been said that the devil 
himself would be put into a pie if he were 
caught in Cornwall. Most of them are richly 
saturated with clotted cream, a real Cornish 
dainty, which is very popular, as are also 
Cornish seed-cakes. 

From time immemorial Cornwall has had 
a leading part in the mineral industries of 
England. Mines of tin, copper, lead, and 
zinc abound, and have been the chief source 



of revenue to the county. They give abund- 
ant employment to the laboring class, and 
men, women, and even children are freely 
employed in various ways about the mines. 
Since 1870 the mining industries have de- 
clined; the mines have been less productive, 
and the great discoveries of ore in this and 
other countries have greatly reduced prices 
and scattered the Cornish miners over the 

The fisheries of Cornwall have been another 
very important industry, especially the mack- 
erel and pilchard fishing. The pilchard is 
a very delicious fish, similar to a herring, and 
is found almost exclusively on the Cornish 

Cornwall abounds in interesting antiquities, 
and many of these are claimed to be almost 
as old as the granite rocks and cliffs of which 
they are composed. They are relics of the 
early Britons, — remains of villages, various 
sorts of sepulchral and memorial stones, 
and also some that were associated with 
ancient religious rites. Some of these, such 
as the " holed stones," have given rise to many 
superstitions among the common folk , who 



have been in the liabit of dijagging invalids 
through the orifices in the hope of curing them. 
There are also "cliff castles," especially 
at Land's End and at other points on the 
coast, — retreats of the native tribes from 
enemies, — and also earth-work forts on 
elevated sites throughout the country. The 
early Christian antiquities include churches 
and priories and the oratories or small 
chapels, frequently associated with a Bap- 
tistery or holy well. Some of these are as 
early as the fifth century. There is also an 
unusual number of crosses. As to their uses 
an ancient manuscript says : " For this reason 
ben crosses by ye way, that when folk pass- 
ynge see ye croysses they shoulde thynke on 
Hym that deyed on ye croysse, and wor- 
shyppe Hym above althyng." They were also 
sometimes erected to guide and guard the way 
to the church, and sometimes for the beau- 
tiful custom of leaving alms on the crosses for 
poor wayfarers. The crosses were formerly 
far more numerous than now, but recently 
some of them have been rescued from doing 
duty as gate-posts and the like, to be re- 
erected in the churchyards. There are also 



inscribed stones, such as the Camborne 
altar- slab, and others. 

Of the towns of Cornwall, almost all have 
some interest, ancient or modern. Truro has 
recently become the episcopal town of the 
county ; a fine cathedral has been built, and 
the Bishop has his residence there. Falmouth, 
at the mouth of the Fal, is a comparatively 
modern town, beautifully situated. Its mag- 
nificent and famous harbor has given it 
considerable commercial importance in former 
times. One of its chief attractions is Penden- 
nis Castle. It stands on a bold promontory 
two hundred feet high, on the western side 
of the harbor. It was one of the works of 
defense undertaken by Henry VIII, but the 
enclosure is of the time of Elizabeth. It is 
an interesting example of the military archi- 
tecture of the period. During the Civil War, 
Pendennis Castle played a prominent and 
interesting part, and was the last but one of the 
old castles that held out for the King's cause. 

A picturesque spot of much interest on 
the coast is the jutting headland of the Lizard. 
The serpentine rock of which it is composed 
is very beautiful when polished. The best 


time to visit this spot is at low tide on a 
summer day, after a storm. Its soft yellow 
sandy beach, its emerald waves, deep rock- 
pools and gorgeous serpentine cliffs, of green, 
purple, crimson, and black, are then of 
astonishing beauty. Passing eastward along 
the coast, we come to the little town of Mar- 
azion, in front of which rises from the strand 
the far-famed St. Michael's Mount — an 
isolated, rugged pyramid of granite, about 
a mile in circumference and two hundred and 
thirty feet high at the chapel platform. 
Several Sir John St. Aubyns have succes- 
sively inherited it since 1860, the date, on 
which they acquired it from a Bassett of 
Tehidy. The chapel and the hall are the 
portions most worthy of examination. A 
few steps below the chapel is a recess called 
the dungeon ; near it, a narrow winding stair 
leads to the tower. Near the platform are 
the remains of a stone cresset called St. 
Michael's Chair, which is supposed to bring 
good fortune to those that sit in it. 

The town of Penzance, "the Holy Head- 
land," is the place of approach to the Land's 
End — a bold promontory standing out 


into the sea at tlie southwestern extremity 
of England. Its granite cliff-scenery is the 
finest in Cornwall. The tempest-scarred 
cliffs, the furious onset of the waves in 
stormy weather, and the gorgeous sunsets, 
so frequent at that point, invest Land's End 
with a deep and almost melancholy grand- 
eur. It is said that Wesley stood upon this 
point when he wrote the hymn, 

"Lo! on a narrow neck of land 
'T ^dxt two unbounded seas I stand." 

But the chief interest of Cornwall for our 
present purpose lies in the town of Cam- 
borne on the Cam, or "crooked river." 
It is one of the great mining centres, and has 
numerous rich mines, of which the principal 
is Dolcoath, one of the deepest and most 
ancient in Cornwall. It is a busy town, built 
mostly of stone, with nothing of note in the 
way of architecture. The plain parish 
church, with its three sharp gables, contains 
nothing of special interest. It stands in the 
midst of the churchyard, in which are found 
many monuments and inscriptions to attract 
the attention of those who love to recall the 
past. About three miles to the north is 



Teliidy, the seat of the Bassetts, with its fine 
park and gallery containing pictures by 
Gainsborough, Sir Joshua Reynolds, and 
Vandyke. In driving to the high bluffs on 
the north shore it is easy to visit Carn Brea, 
a rocky headland seven hundred feet above 
the sea, with picturesque granite blocks 
piled upon its summit. Here, it is said, was 
the chief scene of Druid worship ; here was 
the sacrificial rock, in the hollows of which 
the victim was laid; and here were the 
granite basins hollowed out to receive his 
blood. The castle, of Norman origin, was 
built by Ralph De Pomeroy, and was occu- 
pied by a Bassett in the time of Edward IV. 
There are also here the remains of ancient 
British earthworks, and "hut circles," and 
a tall monument to Lord De Dunstanville 
of Tehidy, erected in 1836. 

A point of great interest to us is that Mr. 
Samuel Davey, the inventor of the safety 
fuse for blasting and mining, was a native 
of Camborne, and had his residence there, 
as did also his partner in business, George 
Smith, LL.D. Mr. Smith was a man of 
high character, and great ability as a scholar 



and writer, and the author of many works 
of theology and biblical history. Among 
these are "The Hebrew People" and "The 
Gentile Nations," which have been accepted 
as text-books in some theological courses. 
The other member of the firm was Major 
John S. Bickford, a man of wealth and 
influence, and the title of the firm became 
*' Bickford, Smith and Davey." The manu- 
factory was located at Tuckingmill, a village 
a little distance from Camborne. The busi- 
ness, at first small, has grown and become 
very successful, and has branches in many 
parts of Europe and America. The original 
firm, as represented by its successors, still 
carries on the business in Tuckingmill. 

One of the noteworthy features of the 
town life is the Saturday market-day. 
On this day are gathered the people from 
all the outlying country, with varied pro- 
ducts of farm, garden and dairy, as well 
as wares of all kinds, which are offered for 
sale in the great market-house of the town. 

" Camborne Feast" is a harvest festival 
answering to our Thanksgiving. It occurs 
on November 13. 








In the little hamlet of Roskear, an outlying 
village of Camborne, my father, Joseph 
Toy, was born. The long, low stone cottage, 
with small windows and overhanging roof, 
still stands. A narrow drive runs in from the 
village street, and a low stone wall separates 
it from the plain yard in front adorned with 
here and there a shrub or climbing vine. 
The house is little changed since the large 
family of children were sheltered under its 
eaves and played about the yard, and the 
dear mother spread the simple food on the 
white table, and sanded the well-scoured 
floor. My father was born in April, 1808. 
He was the son of Robert and Ann Hosking 
Toy. He was the youngest of eight children : 
John, Robert, Nicholas, William, James, Jo- 
seph, and his sisters Mary Ann (Mrs. Sims), 
and Nanny (Mrs. Granville). His parents 
were honest, God-fearing people, training 
their children to a life of industry and in- 
tegrity, and early leading them into the ways 
of piety and obedience. Joseph, being a 
bright, attractive child, and possessing an 



affectionate nature, was very naturally the 
pet and darling of the family. While he was 
quite young his father died suddenly, and 
as the elder children were mostly married, 
the home was broken up, and he, with his 
widowed mother, was received into the fam- 
ily of his brother John, a man of much 
energy and ability, who afterwards became 
captain of the West Seaton mine. In a few 
years his mother, too, entered into rest, 
leaving her beloved Joseph to the care of 
his elder brother, and well did that brother 
and his estimable wife fulfill their trust. 
The home was full of love and sunshine, 
and the most tender affection was lavished 
upon the young brother. My uncle scarcely 
ever came home without the inquiry, 
"Where is the dear boy.^" 

Mrs. Jane Gilbert, my Uncle John's 
youngest daughter, writes thus of the family. 
"Their father died when Joseph was a lad, 
but he was always a great pet with his bro- 
thers. I have heard my father tell how when 
he was going courting Joseph had cried to 
go with him, and he has taken him many a 
time. Their mother died when your father 



was young, and he came to him at our house 
and continued to live with us until his mar- 
riage. So my sisters looked upon him more 
as a brother than an uncle. I can remember 
that when the letter came to father announc- 
ing your dear mother's death, he wept aloud 
and said, 'Poor little Joe!' Their mother's 
maiden name was Ann Davey, and she was 
born at Nans Nuke Illogan. She was a 
grand old Christian, a splendid character 
and handsome. I have always heard her 
children speak of her with reverence and 
love. Our grandfather's mother's name was 
Andrews, and she was born in the parish of 
Newlyn East." 

The circumstances of the family made 
it necessary that all should share in its sup- 
port, and, as soon as he was thought capable, 
my father was put — as were other children 
of his age — to do such work at the mine as 
was then almost the only employment open 
to children. They were set at picking up the 
ore for wheeling from the opening, and other 
light work suited to their age, the labor and 
responsibility being increased as they grew 
older. The advantages of education for the 



children of the working classes were few 
indeed at that day, and where so many 
mouths were to be fed, but little could be 
spared for books or schooling. My father 
early developed a fondness for reading 
which grew into an earnest thirst for know- 
ledge, leading him to devote much of the 
time spent by other boys in play to the 
search for it as for hid treasure. 

There was considerable natural musical 
talent in the family, and, as my father had 
a sweet voice, he was early taken into the 
surpliced boy-choir of the parish church, to 
which one or two of his brothers belonged, 
though his family were devoted members 
of the Wesleyan church of Camborne. The 
beautiful ritual of the church and its im- 
pressive services had a refining influence 
upon the sensitive boy, and the musical 
training he there received was of much value 
to him, and gave him much enjoyment in 
after life. He used to speak with enthusi- 
asm of this experience, and I have often 
heard him tell of the delight with which the 
boys would go forth in the frosty air of the 
Christmas morning to sing carols under the 



windows of their friends, and how eagerly 
they would catch the pennies which were 
thrown from the windows in response to 
their greeting. The drinking habit of those 
days was universal, and total abstinence 
was a thing unknown ; and I have heard 
him say that the good rector, Parson Rogers, 
would often pat the boys affectionately when 
they had done particularly well, and say, 
" You have done well, boys. Now come with 
me and have a little drop of something 
warm." His connection with the parish 
choir was also the means of attracting the 
notice of some people of influence who were 
afterwards of much assistance to him. 

As he grew older, his interest in education 
increased greatly, and produced a distaste 
for t?he drudgery of his life at the mine^ The 
conviction grew upon him that he was fitted 
for something better, and while he patiently 
bided his time, he was diligently improving 
every opportunity for study. Kind friends 
soon noticed the boy's struggles, and began 
to encourage him by lending him books, 
assisting him in evening studies, and giving 
him help in every possible way. Prominent 



among these were Mr. Thomas Davey, Mr. 
Thomas Garland, Dr. George Smith, the 
author and scholar, Lady Bassett, and Lord 
De Dunstanville of Tehidy, whose kindness 
and sympathy were very helpful. 

At the age of nineteen my father passed 
the religious crisis of his life, and his con- 
version was thorough and complete. He 
united with the Wesleyan church, and threw 
himself with all the ardor of his nature into 
its Christian work. He was very active in 
the social meetings, and showed such de- 
cided talent in that line that he was soon 
appointed a class-leader. He was also a 
teacher in the Sunday School, where he 
showed such aptitude for the work as to 
incline him to the profession of teaching as 
a vocation. He became Superintendent of 
the Sunday School, and was soon licensed to 
preach, receiving an appointment as local 
preacher on a circuit.* 

By untiring diligence he had qualified him- 
self for the position of teacher and obtained 
a situation in one of the Lancastrian schools, 
so popular at that day, located in Camborne. 
He filled this position for some years with 




much acceptance, continuing at the same 
time his own studies, until he acquired, 
almost wholly by his own exertions, a solid 
and excellent education. He was a good 
English scholar, a fine reader, carefully 
exact in spelling and pronunciation, well 
read in history, a good mathematician, fairly 
proficient in algebra and geometry, with con- 
siderable knowledge of Latin, Greek, and 
French. He demonstrated clearly what can 
be accomplished by any boy with a good 
mind, by energy and perseverance, in the 
face of the most serious obstacles. 

About this time he formed the acquaint- 
ance of Miss Jane Osier, a young lady of 
refinement and culture, who was at that 
time proprietor of a millinery establishment 
in Camborne; and he married her in 1833. 
My mother was the daughter of Benjamin 
and Jane Osier of Falmouth, and was born 
August 1, 1802. The family was a very 
excellent one. Benjamin Osier was the son 
of Edward Osier and Joan Drew, sister of 
the famous Cornish metaphysician. He was 
a man of very decided character, a " gentle- 
man of the old school." His discipline in his 



family was very strict, though kind, the rod 
always occupying a conspicuous place over 
the mantel for the admonition of any child 
inclined to disobedience. A fine miniature 
of my Grandfather Osier is in my posses- 
sion, and it is our most cherished heirloom. 
It is in the form of a locket. The picture 
shows a fine oval face, with delicate fea- 
tures, powdered hair, and the heavy eye- 
brows we have learned to call "the Osier 
eyebrows." On the reverse side it has the 
hair of my grandfather and grandmother, 
smoothly crossed, and upon it the mono- 
gram, "B. J. O.," in exquisite letters formed 
of tiny pearls. This locket was given to my 
mother by her father when the family went 
out to the Cape of Good Hope, South Africa, 
in the year 1819. It was painted in London 
some time previous to that. 

In April, 1797, according to the Falmouth 
church register, my grandfather married 
Jane Sawle, the daughter of Stephen Sawle 
of Falmouth, an officer in the British navy 
and afterward Captain of a Falmouth packet, 
the Hanover. A solid silver tankard is pre- 
served in our family, which was presented 



to our great-grandfather by the British 
Admiralty. It bears this inscription: "For 
twenty years' faithful service " ; and on the 
side, the letters, "S. S." It is now the prop- 
erty of my sister, Mrs. R. H. Ensign. There 
is also somewhere in the Osier family a pic- 
ture of our Grandfather Sawle, an old gentle- 
man in naval uniform. 

My mother was also one of a large family, 
which consisted of eight girls and two 
brothers.^ They were: Susan, Eliza, Mary 
Ann, Amelia, Philippa, Jane, Julia, Sarah, 
Stephen, and Benjamin. 

While my mother was still young, her 
father went out to the Cape of Good Hope, 
in charge of a colony of settlers. Dr. William 
Osier has kindly loaned me a diary of my 
grandfather's, containing lists of provisions 
and supplies purchased for the party, as well 
as other items. The entries extend from 
Januarys, 1815, to January 25, 1821. There 
seem to have been in the party fourteen 

^ My mother's cousin, Mrs. Kate Divine, in a letter 
from South Africa, dated September 8, 1809, speaks of 
another son, Joseph, the oldest of the family, who died 
before they went out to the Cape. She also gives addi- 
tional information about Benjamin Osier and his family 
which I have added as an appendix. — S. W. D. 



men, sixteen women, one boy, and three 
girls. All payments were to be made in a 
proportion of the products of the land. My 
grandfather settled in Simons Town, with 
most of his family, and was probably a 
magistrate of the new colony. Two of the 
daughters, Julia and Philippa, being in busi- 
ness in England, had remained behind. My 
mother was left in the care of her mother's 
sister, Mrs. John Harris. They were people of 
some culture, and having no children of their 
own, were very fond of my mother and gave 
careful attention to the cultivation of her 
mind and manners. Her uncle took special 
delight in training her in reading and elocu- 
tion. I have often heard her recite with much 
spirit : 

"My name is Nerval. On the Grampian hills 
My father feeds his flock"; 

also many selections from the Iliad and 
Odyssey, taught her by her uncle. Her 
home with these dear friends was most 
pleasant, and she cherished the loving 
memory of their kindness all her life. It 
found expression in the name she gave to 
me, her first-born, of Mary Harris. She 



learned her business while she remained 
with them, and became the head woman in 
a large millinery establishment in Falmouth, 
and afterwards set up in business for herself 
in Camborne. My mother became a mem- 
ber of the Church of England, to which all 
her family belonged, at the age of seventeen, 
and so continued till near her marriage, 
when she united with the Wesleyan church 
in Camborne. 

My grandfather Osier died at Simons 
Town, after some years' residence there. 
My grandmother returned to her English 
home, but most of the children, being mar- 
ried and settled in business at the Cape, 
made their homes permanently there, and 
their descendants are now living mostly in 
Simons Town and in Cape Town. After my 
grandmother's return to England, she taught 
for a time a school for girls; but later came 
to Camborne and made her home with her 
daughters who were in business there. Her 
home was with my mother till her departure 
for America. 

While my mother remained in Falmouth, 
her Aunt Osier, the last of the old family, 



lived near her with her two daughters, and 
they were a great comfort to her. This Aunt 
Osier died in April, 1864. She was Mary- 
Paddy Osier, the wife of my grandfather's 
eldest brother, Edward. Their eldest son, 
Edward, has descendants in Canada, with 
whom we have had very pleasant relations, 
and a daughter, Mary, was the mother of 
Mrs. Truran of Truro. Another son. Rev. 
Featherstone Osier, came out to Canada as 
a missionary, and became the founder of a 
large and influential family there. Our own 
relationship to them has been only lately 
discovered, and has been the source of much 
pleasure to us. Mrs. Featherstone Osier 
died at the age of one hundred, in 1907, a 
woman very remarkable and greatly be- 
loved ; and her large family of sons, including 
Dr. William Osier of Oxford, Hon. Justice 
Osier of Toronto, Britton Bath Osier, the 
eminent lawyer, and Mr. Edmund Osier, the 
financier are all distinguished in public life. 
Of my mother's sisters, Susan married a 
Mr. Fineran of Cape Town, and had an 
interesting family of children. She was early 
left a widow. Her daughter, Mrs. Kate 



Divine, has written me several times, and 
given me interesting details of the family. 
One daughter went to New Zealand to live 
after her marriage; one son, Charles, died 
early. Mrs. Divine's son, Edmund, went 
to sea quite young, in a British ship, and 
coming to New York, visited us all, which 
was a great pleasure. Mrs. Divine is now 
quite an invalid, and with her unmarried 
daughter, Maude, lives in Plumstead, a sub- 
urb of Cape Town, very near two of her 
sons and their families. 

Mary Ann married Mr. Sayers of Simons 
Town, and her children are still there. She 
was a very lovely character, and died about 
1855, after a long and severe illness borne 
with great fortitude and patience. The in- 
scription chosen for her tombstone was the 
same as that on my mother's : Rev. xiv : 13. 
Her daughter, Mrs. Eliza Storrier, has writ- 
ten me under date March 13, 1882, from the 
address: Mrs. J. E. Storrier, Patent Slip, 
Simons Town. 

Eliza Osier married Mr. Jordan, and lived 
at Wynberg, Cape of Good Hope. Her hus- 
band was in good business, and they had a 



family of seven daughters and one son. She 
was also left a widow. 

Philippa married Mr. William Cogill, a 
merchant of Simons Town, who had several 
children. She had three of her own — 
two sons and a daughter, Julia, who married 
a Captain Bray and went to England to live. 
She was left a widow with two children, in 
rather unpleasant circumstances. I corre- 
sponded for some time with my Aunt Phil- 
ippa, and her son Arthur, who was at sea, 
came into the port of Boston at one time and 
we went to see him while in port. Aunt 
Philippa died February 14, 1879. She had 
a stroke of apoplexy and lingered for twenty- 
four hours, but never regained conscious- 
ness. She was a woman of lovely character, 
and an earnest Christian. 

Julia Osier, who, with Aunt Philippa, 
went out to the Cape after we left England, 
was married there and had one child, but 
died early. I have not the name of her hus- 

Amelia married Gilbert Williams of Fal- 
mouth, who followed the sea. She some- 
times went with him, leaving her two chil- 



dren, Gilbert and Amelia, with her mother. 
The son, Gilbert, lived in Falmouth. He 
was an engineer, and had a large family. We 
visited them while in England. One daugh- 
ter was named Mary Harris Dodge, for me, 
and one Julia Osier, for my sister Julia. 
My cousin Gilbert had a good mind and was 
well educated, but was never very success- 
ful in life. He died several years ago. His 
children are doing well, and are still located 
in Falmouth. His sister Amelia had always 
lived with them, being of feeble intellect and 
a great care. My Aunt Williams had a hard 
struggle in life. She was early left a widow, 
and her health was delicate, but she sup- 
ported her family by teaching, and educated 
her children. Her health failed, however, 
and at last her reason gave way. She was for 
some time in the Bodmin Asylum, but later 
her reason returned, and she lived some 
years with her son, and died in Falmouth 
a few years ago. 

Sarah, the youngest daughter, was nine 
years of age when the family returned from 
the Cape. She was adopted by her Aunt 
Harris and her husband, and through them 



received an excellent education — a thing 
very difficult to acquire in those days. She 
remained with them till their death, then 
went to Camborne to her sisters, and after- 
wards secured a situation in Truro, where 
she became engaged to a man much older 
than herself. She lost her interest in him 
as the time drew near for her marriage, and 
determined not to marry him. Hearing of a 
family who were going to Gibraltar and 
wished a governess, she at once secured the 
position, and after a hasty farewell to her 
mother, having gained her very unwilling 
consent, she left England in two days. This 
was in 1838. In 1840 she married Mr. Wat- 
son, of Edinburgh, Scotland, who belonged 
to the Royal Artillery. At the end of two 
years they returned to England, and were 
stationed at Woolwich, but in 1845 they 
removed to Edinburgh. In 1852 the discov- 
ery of gold in Australia created a rush to 
that colony. My Aunt Sarah with her family 
removed there, her husband joining in the 
search for gold with varying success, while 
she labored energetically to rear and edu- 
cate her children. 



She was a widow for some years before her 
death. Her children, of whom six lived to 
grow up, were a great comfort and an honor 
to her. They are all respectably settled in 
Australia. Her eldest daughter, Julia Osier, 
married a Mr. Thomas Sayle, and they now 
live at Queenscliff, Australia. My sister 
Julia met them in her journey to the East, 
in 1900, as well as another daughtcT-, Mrs. 
Evans, and two sons, William and Arthur, 
the latter of whom has since died. My Aunt 
Watson died after a short illness a few years 
ago, — I have not the exact date. In a letter 
received from my Aunt Sarah, dated June 10, 
1872, she thus speaks of my mother: — 

"My first recollection of your mother 
was when we returned from the Cape. I 
was then nine years old. She was much 
occupied by business, but often on evenings 
she would take a walk in a quiet, beautiful 
lane near our home, with your Aunt Phillis 
and myself. In these rambles I first learned 
to love nature and poetry, for, to our delight, 
she would repeat to us choice poems which 
I have never forgotten. She sowed the seeds 
of a love of literature in my mind, which 



time has never effaced and which has been 
a solace to me in prosperity and adversity. 
I never think of my dear sister Jane but as 
the most perfect and consistent Christian I 
ever knew." 

She also quotes from a letter written to 
her by my mother, August 15, 1844, in which 
she says: — 

" Mary is smaller than our other children, 
but she is a kind-hearted little creature, and 
is able to render me many little services. I 
think her disposition resembles that of our 
dear mother. Joseph is naturally self-willed, 
and little Susan volatile. Ann Jane is now 
two years old. She is an engaging little 
creature, and can sing and talk remark- 
ably well. She is named for her two grand- 

Of the two sons, my Uncle Stephen Osier 
remained at the Cape. He was for many 
years a teacher in the government schools. 
I had for some years an interesting corre- 
spondence with him. He had two sons, 
Stephen and Benjamin, and a very sweet 
daughter, Katherine Jane, who died quite 
young. The sons were both men of position 



and influence at the Cape. My uncle and his 
wife both died some years ago. 

My Uncle Benjamin returned to England 
and established his business there. He lived 
for some years in Barnstaple, and died of 
apoplexy, February 3, 1864. He left two 
sons, both of whom were men of character. 
One of them. Rev. Benjamin Osier of Ex- 
mouth, afterwards became a Baptist clergy- 
man. I have recently had a delightful corre- 
spondence with him, and my sister Susan 
has met him and his family. He has two 
sons, John Stephen and Ernest Edward, 
both of whom have children. 

I should have inserted before a sketch of 
the family of my Uncle John Toy, with whom 
we have been more intimately connected 
than with any other branch of either family. 
My uncle married Jane Rule of Camborne, 
and they had four daughters and one son. 
The eldest, Mary Ann, married Mr. Jo- 
sephus Snell. He was a builder and con- 
tractor, and had a prosperous business. 
They removed to London, and most of their 
life was spent there. They had a very plea- 
sant home, and Mr. Snell owned several 



houses which he rented. They have both 
died within a few years. The second daugh- 
ter, Amelia, married James Snell, a brother 
of Josephus. They had two daughters. 
Asenath, the elder, was adopted by her 
Uncle Josephus, as they had no children of 
their own. She married Edward Brundell, 
and their home was in London. Louisa, 
the younger, always lived with her parents. 
My cousin Amelia died quite suddenly about 
two years ago, Jennefer married Philip 
Morshead of Camborne. They had two 
children : a son, John, who has always been 
a teacher, and a daughter, Annie Davis, 
who has been also a very successful teacher. 
My cousin Jennefer was a little older than 
myself, and was very fond of us as children 
before we left England. She was a favorite 
of my mother, and I always corresponded 
with her occasionally. Both she and her 
husband have recently died. Jane, the 
youngest, married John Gilbert, since cap- 
tain of one of the large mines, and a man of 
much intelligence and influence. He has 
made several visits to America in the interest 
of the mines, also he was sent to India, 



where he was employed for two years by 
the mine-owners. They have a pleasant 
home in Camborne and three fine children : 
two sons, Arthur and Bertie, who are both 
in business, and Leonora, a sweet girl who 
is soon to be married to a Wesleyan min- 
ister/ The only son, John Toy, was not as 
successful as the rest. He came to America, 
and went from here to Australia, where he 
died some years ago. 

I wish also to mention the family of my 
aunt, Mrs. Mary Ann Sims. She was my 
father's only remaining sister when we visited 
England in 1882. She was then living with 
her daughter, Mrs. Arthur, in Camborne, 
and was about eighty years of age. She was 
a lovely old lady, petite in figure, exquisitely 
neat in dress, her face beaming with kind- 
ness from beneath one of the snowy caps 
with which her grandson, Johnnie Arthur, de- 
lighted to keep her supplied. She was greatly 
beloved by her grandchildren, and the pet 

* Mrs. Gilbert has now been for several years a widow, 
and all her children are married and have children of 
their own. Her home is with her daughter Leonora, whose 
husband is a successful clergyman. — S. W. D. 



of all the nieces and nephews. She reared 
a large family of children, who are widely 
scattered. One son has long lived in Nor- 
way, and is the father of Joseph Sims of 
Simsbury, Connecticut. One is the Rev. 
James Sims ^ of Council Bluffs, Iowa, who 
was for many years a Methodist minister 
in Wisconsin. Reverend and Mrs. James 
Sims celebrated the sixtieth anniversary 
of their marriage in 1907, when they were 
both over eighty. They had ten children, 
of whom seven are still living, Mrs. Mary 
Bainbridge being best known to us. Two 
sons and two daughters are living in Eng- 

My Aunt Sims had a cosy cottage at 
Carwinning, in the country, a few miles 
from Camborne; and it was one of my 
mother's chief pleasures to take her little 
children to this pleasant country home, 
where we were always cordially welcomed 
and treated to the best of Cornish cream 
and gooseberry pasties. It was a pleasant 
relief from her busy and confining life in the 

* Reverend Mr. Sims died in August, 1909. 



shop where she personally superintended her 
millinery business. 

My father lived, for over five years after 
his marriage, in Camborne, holding the posi- 
tion of principal of the Lancastrian School, 
and making himself very useful as local 
preacher and class-leader in the Wesleyan 
church. Three children were born to them 
in these happy days of their early married 
life. I was the first-born, and was ushered 
into life October 31, 1834, at about 8 o'clock 
in the morning. I have often heard my father 
speak of the joy he felt when I was placed 
in his arms for the first time. The second 
was my brother Joseph, born July 23, 1836, 
a bright, active boy, who made life busy for 
those who had the care of him. Then came 
my sister Susan, born June 3, 1838. She was 
the household pet when we turned our faces 
from the dear old home to seek a new one 
in a land of strangers. This great change 
which now came into our family life was in 
connection with the introduction of the 
manufacture of safety fuses into America. 
The firm, having an established and lucra- 
tive business in England, naturally sought 



to enlarge and extend it, and America was 
considered an inviting field for the new 

About this time Mr. Richard Bacon of 
Simsbury, Connecticut, was travelling in 
England in the interest of copper-mining, 
which was then carried on at the old prison 
in East Granby, Connecticut, known as 
Newgate. He met with the firm of Bickford, 
Smith & Davey, and they determined to 
make an effort through him to introduce their 
business into America. The first attempt 
was accordingly made at the old prison, with 
some success. It had been transferred to 
Simsbury, and was in successful operation 
there, when, in the summer of 1839, my 
father, who was well and favorably known 
to the firm, and had been greatly encouraged 
and befriended by Mr.' Smith and Mr. 
Davey, and in their employ, received from 
them an offer of a position as bookkeeper 
in the American establishment, which was 
known as Bacon, Bickford & Co., with what 
was for those days a good salary. The ac- 
counts of the new branch were confused and 
unsatisfactory, and the company desired to 



have accurate statements rendered. It was 
a fine opening for the future for my father, 
as was proved a few years later when he 
became a member of the firm of which he 
was afterwards the head. 

This startling proposition brought a 
season of anxious thought and prayerful 
consideration into the little home. My 
mother was well established in her business ; 
her mother and two sisters were with her; 
her love for her English home and friends 
was deep and true; and she shrank with 
all the force of her loving nature from the 
separation. The journey was long and try- 
ing. No ocean steamers made the voyage 
a pleasant pastime of a few days. Long 
weeks of tossing on the stormy ocean were 
to be followed by the search for a new 
home in a land of strangers. But with my 
mother the voice of duty was always the 
voice of God. The prospects of a wider 
field for her husband, and enlarged oppor- 
tunities for her children, were not to be 
neglected. Her decision was made, and say- 
ing, as did Ruth, " Where thou goest, I will 
go," she bravely put away the arms of love 



which would have held her back, and set 
herself to the task of closing her business 
and arranging for her journey. At length the 
preparations were over. The last farewells 
were said to the dear little home, to the 
church they loved and had served so faith- 
fully, and to the dear ones from whom it 
was so hard to part. The van laden with 
luggage for the voyage, with space reserved 
for the family, was ready to start; and amid 
the tears and prayers of those who loved 
them, the dear old home faded forever from 
the eyes of my father and mother. 

The first stage of the journey was to Fal- 
mouth, my mother's early home, where we 
remained for a rest of a day or two with my 
mother's sister, Mrs. Williams. Pleasant 
days they were, of loving sisterly commun- 
ion. The children, wild with the excitement 
of the new experience, were eagerly spying 
out the wonders of the city, in company with 
their cousins. My brother Joseph, a bold, 
adventurous little fellow of scarcely three, 
wandered off one day, to the great anxiety 
of his mother. He was found, after a long 
search, by my aunt, gazing intently into the 



mysteries of a rope-walk. Seeing his aunt, 
he exclaimed, eagerly, " Oh, here comes Aunt 
Philippa! Now we'll go through the gate!" 

These pleasant days soon passed, and 
with renewed good-byes, we left for Ports- 
mouth, from which port we were to sail. 
A vexatious delay of some days was experi- 
enced there, but at last the good ship spread 
her sails and stood off down the harbor. 
With tearful eyes they stood on deck and 
watched the receding shores of their dear 
native land fade from their sight. Then, 
with new devotion to each other and to the 
God who was leading them, they turned with 
hope and courage to the new life opening 
before them. 

For six long weeks the vessel ploughed its 
way over the heaving sea. My father was 
almost immediately prostrated by sea-sick- 
ness, and for most of the passage was con- 
fined to the stateroom, unable to render any 
assistance in the care of the family. My 
mother bravely rose to the emergency, caring 
for her sick husband and the restless chil- 
dren, and bearing the weariness and dis- 
comfort of the voyage without a murmur. 



My brother Joseph, being of an inquiring 
mind and full of restless energy, was con- 
stantly wandering about the ship, exploring 
every new place, talking with the sailors, 
trying to climb the ropes, and requiring un- 
ceasing vigilance to keep him from harm. 
Little Susan, then just past her first birth- 
day, learned to walk on board the ship, 
and one of her first exploits in climbing about 
was to upset a teapot of hot tea into her 
bosom, making a bad scald of which she 
carries the scars to this day, thus adding 
much to the care and anxiety of her mother. 

At last the weary weeks wore away, and 
their eyes were gladdened by the sight of 
land. On the eighteenth of August, 1839, 
they made safe anchor in the harbor of New 
York. From there an easy sail by the Sound 
brought them to Hartford. Once more the 
luggage was mounted on a heavy wagon, 
with space reserved for the family, and they 
were off on the ten-mile drive over the moun- 
tains to Simsbury, their place of destination. 

As the afternoon was wearing away, they 
came to the top of the high hill rising ab- 
ruptly at the eastern end of the street of 



East Weatogue, where their journey was 
cut short by the breaking down of the wagon. 
The prospect which opened before them was 
beautiful indeed. The little village which 
was to be their home nestled at the foot of 
the mountain range, while fertile meadows 
stretched away in the distance, through 
which the Farmington river with its wooded 
banks wound its peaceful way, the horizon 
bounded by the range of mountains west 
of the town. It was a lovely picture, but 
the way-worn travellers could not realize 
its beauty, as they alighted from the broken 
wagon, and took their weary way down the 
hill to the village, leaving the driver to repair 
the wagon and follow later. My mother, 
wallging on, came to a hospitable-looking 
home and ventured to ask a drink for the 
tired children. A pleasant- faced matron 
greeted them kindly, invited them in to rest, 
and offering my mother a cup of tea, pro- 
ceeded to regale the hungry children with 
bread and molasses. This was their first 
welcome to their new home. My mother 
rejoiced to find that her new friend was from 
the dear home land, also that her husband 



was in the employ of the same firm. They 
became lifelong friends, and in sickness and 
in health it was their delight to show a sis- 
terly kindness to each other. This good 
woman was "Auntie Whitehead," a warm 
friend of our family, who has since joined 
my mother in the heavenly home. 

At last, as the evening shadows were fall- 
ing, the heavy wagon came slowly down the 
mountain, and we were lodged in our first 
home in America. It was an old-fashioned 
New England house, with long sloping roof 
and lean-to running down behind. It is 
still standing and in fair repair, just oppo- 
site the Cornish house, which stood by the 
old schoolhouse in East Weatogue. One 
half the house was occupied by the family 
of Mr. Joseph Eales, who was a member 
of the firm. We remained there for a time, 
and afterwards removed to the house stand- 
ing where Mr. Aman Latimer's house now 
stands. But, desiring a more permanent 
home, my father bought the farm owned by 
Mr. Roswell Phelps, lying just at the foot 
of the mountain. It is now owned by Mr. 
Henry Ensign. My mother rejoiced to feel 








that at last her wanderings were over and 
she was settled in a home of her own. 

How plainly I can see it now ! The plain 
house with its gambrel roof and double 
front-doors kept secure by a stout oak bar 
resting in sockets of iron ; the narrow front 
hall, the family sitting-room on one side, 
with the east door opening on the grassy 
yard; and the wide stone steps, our only 
piazza. The parlor was on the west of the 
hall, with its ingrain carpet and plain furni- 
ture, which then seemed quite fine to my 
childish eyes. The best bed standing in the 
corner with the heavy English counterpane 
was one of the conspicuous features of the 
room. Behind was the long kitchen with its 
great fireplace, my mother's bedroom at one 
end, and a smaller one for the children at the 
other. Plain and simple, indeed, and even 
bare as compared with the homes of these 
days, as was this home of our childhood, 
it was " sweet home " to us, for it was bright 
with the love that made our lives all sun- 
shine, and peace and contentment were our 
constant guests. 
Two large buttonwood trees stood at the 



front gate, up to which led some stone steps. 
By the street was an open shed under which 
wagons could drive, and beyond was the 
garden with the great apple tree at the top 
of it, flanked by peach trees, whose fruit 
was "sweet to our taste." Behind the house 
was the well with its long sweep and its 
"oaken bucket," which was our only re- 
frigerator. It sometimes befell that a luckless 
pail of cream or butter fell to the bottom. 
Then one of the children was despatched 
in haste over the fields to borrow neighbor 
Bissel's iron creepers, and great was the 
excitement as we watched the grappling 
which surely brought up the pail, if not 
always the contents. There, too, was the 
old pear tree, in the back garden, whose 
fruit was so delicious as we ran out in the 
early morning to gather what had fallen 
during the night; and the orchard with its 
long grass, often trampled in our hasty 
search for the "golden sweets" which 
strewed the ground. The hill rising at the 
back of it was crowned with the fine spread- 
ing chestnut trees, which were such a joy 
to us in the autumn when the frost had 



opened the burs and strewed the brown nuts 
on the ground. Behind the house was the 
barn, with the cow which we early learned 
to milk, and the white horse which carried 
the family to church on Sunday, and my 
father on his semi- weekly journeys to the 
post office in Hopmeadow. For daily mails 
were unknown in the peaceful valley then. 
The yellow stage rumbled through the 
streets on its semi- weekly trip from Hartford 
and was hailed with joy as a messenger 
from the great world beyond. 

Across the brook and farther down the 
street was the little brown schoolhouse, 
with its stiff hard benches, and open Frank- 
lin stove. Behind was an old apple tree, and 
a barnyard flanked it on the north side. There 
was a row of maples under which we played, 
and built stone houses in the soft sand, mak- 
ing wonderful china closets of bricks and 
shingles and filling them with bits of bright 
crockery laboriously gathered from the chil- 
dren's homes and carried to school in our 

Early rising was the rule in our house, for 
the early breakfast was always preceded by 



family prayers, from which none might be 
excused ; and after it my father went to his 
office and the children to school. We were 
happy children then ; our simple sports and 
homely pleasures had a zest which, it seems 
to me, children in these days of multiplied 
means of diversion know little of. The free 
life of the fields and woods ; the fun of driving 
the cows to and from the mountain pastures, 
and, in spring, carrying home pails of maple 
sap, and boiling it into sugar; scouring the 
mountain-sides and pastures for berries and 
nuts, picking up apples and potatoes in the 
fall, by which we gained a little money 
which was all our own ; and, in winter, the 
joys of coasting down the steep hill and far 
across the fields below by moonlight. The 
wonderful snow-forts our brothers built 
and stormed, and the rides over the snow 
behind the frisky steers on the ox-sled they 
made; in-doors the home-made dolls and 
pleasant games, and in the evenings the 
delightful stories and songs with which our 
mother entertained us — all these were en- 
joyed with a relish so keen as to leave no- 
thing more to be desired. 



As was most natural, my parents immedi- 
ately connected themselves with the church 
of their choice in their new home. The little 
band composing the Methodist Episcopal 
church, which answered to the Wesleyan they 
had left at home, had at that time no church 
edifice and were holding Sabbath services 
in the schoolhouses, mostly at West Wea- 
togue, about a mile from our house. I well 
remember pleasant Sabbath morning walks 
down the village street, through the "River 
Lane," bordered by a tall row of Normandy 
poplars, over the bridge and by the sheep- 
fold of Squire Owen Pettibone at the corner, 
where we were allowed, much to our delight, 
to stop to look at the young lambs with their 
soft white coats and bright eyes. I remem- 
ber, too, the weekly evening prayer-meetings 
held at our own schoolhouse at "early 
candle-light," when lamps and chairs were 
brought in by the neighbors, and the simple 
service, generally conducted by my father, 
was often as " the house of God and the gate 
of heaven" to the earnest worshippers. It 
sometimes happened in the spring-time, 
when the swollen river flooded the meadows 



and made the roads along its banks impass- 
able, that the brook which crossed our 
street was raised to a small river, and the 
street could be crossed only by boats. When 
this occurred on a Sabbath the young men 
would bring a boat, and to our great delight 
we were rowed over, and the neighbors 
gathered at the schoolhouse for a Sabbath 
service at which my father preached. 

His talents as a preacher and religious 
leader were soon perceived and appreciated 
by the people, and his services were in much 
demand. It is said that he preached in the 
schoolhouse at West Weatogue on the even- 
ing after his arrival in Simsbury. In those 
early days he preached frequently, supply- 
ing every alternate Sabbath for many of the 
weaker churches in the vicinity which could 
not afford a regular pastor. He preached , 
in this way at North Canton, Granby, Bloom- 
field, Washington Hill, Newfield, Burling- 
ton, and many other places. He would often 
start off on Saturday afternoon for a drive 
of ten or fifteen miles, leaving his little family 
to get to church on Sunday as best they 
could. In cold weather he would wrap him- 



self in his long cloak brought over from 
England, and with the faithful white horse, 
go forth to wrestle with the wintry winds 
and snows, often not returning till Monday. 
In 1840 the Methodist Episcopal church 
edifice was built, on land donated by Squire 
Ensign, a Congregationalist. My father, 
J. O. Phelps, Esquire, and Mr. Edward 
C. Vining were appointed building-commit- 
tee. Through their earnest efforts, it was 
finally located at Hopmeadow, in spite of 
strong opposition from some of the most 
influential members, who resided at " Cases' 
Farms," now West Simsbury, and who 
favored its erection there. It was said of my 
father by his pastor. Rev. I. Simmons, "He 
was one of the most efficient workers and 
liberal givers in the erection of the Simsbury 
church." A contribution was secured by his 
efforts from the English firm to aid in build- 
ing the church. It was a plain white structure 
with long windows and green blinds. The 
steeple much resembled that of the present 
Congregational church, but was smaller. 
They have been not inaptly compared to 
two boxes piled on one another. The plea- 



sant-toned bell still hangs in the church 
tower, and it was music in the ears of the 
little company of Methodists, when its clear 
notes rang out over the meadows and hill- 
sides, calling them to worship in a church 
of their own. 

The interior was very simple : the plain 
pews with high doors; the swinging gallery 
at the rear with the stiff green curtains on 
brass rings across the front, which were 
drawn with all due ceremony when the pre- 
liminary sounding of the tuning fork an- 
nounced the beginning of preparations for 
singing ; the plain white pulpit with its pur- 
ple velvet cushion and hangings and straight 
seat cushioned with green baize, its door 
closed and carefully buttoned after the min- 
ister had ascended the narrow stairs; the 
high altar railing inclosing the communion 
table at which it was so tiresome for children 
to kneel ; — all these form a vivid picture 
in my memory. Some years later an im- 
provement(?) was introduced which was 
thought to be a marvel of art, in the shape 
of a fresco behind the pulpit. It represented 
two heavy curtains, supported by pillars on 



each side, looped back by a large cord with 
immense dark tassels. This was the wonder 
of our childish eyes for many years. Two 
large box stoves stood near the entrance 
doors, at which I used to stand tremblingly 
to warm myself after our cold ride in winter, 
while the stalwart young sexton, whose 
rough manners concealed a kind heart, 
raked at the glowing coals with his long 
poker and thrust in the big sticks which soon 
sent a glow through our chilled hands and 
feet. The plain little church has been trans- 
formed into a neat modern one with a corner 
tower, ^ and the worshippers with whom my 
memory fills those pews all lie quietly sleep- 
ing on the hillside in the neighboring ceme- 
tery. Only their children remain to remind 
us of them and the good work they did in 
those early days, but their memory is green, 

^ The beautiful stone church which now replaces the 
first wooden building was dedicated June 10, 1909, shortly 
after my mother's death. It was the gift of Mr. R. H. 
Ensign and is entirely furnished with organ and fittings 
by the generosity of members of his family. The large 
Tiffany window over the chancel is a memorial to my 
grandfather presented by his daughters. — S. W. D. 



and the fruit of their labors is enjoyed by 
their children to-day. 

In 1844 my father served as pastor of the 
Simsbury church, giving his services that the 
church might free itself from debt, which 
it did. He conducted during all those years 
a Bible class of ladies in the Sunday School, 
by whom he was greatly appreciated and 
beloved. The Sabbaths of those early days 
were far from being "days of rest" to my 
father and mother. They were obliged to 
rise early to get the family ready for church, 
leaving home at about half-past nine for the 
two-mile ride to Hopmeadow. Then the two 
services with Sunday School between, and 
the drive home occupied the time till four 
p. M. Then my mother had to prepare the 
warm supper, and when all was over it was 
nearly time for the evening prayers, which 
were never omitted. Not until the restless 
children were in bed and soothed to sleep 
by the sweet hymns she used to sing to us, 
was there a moment of quiet rest for the dear 
mother. My father at that time always drove 
to Hopmeadow for the evening service, and 
later one or two of the older children were 



allowed to go with him. In pleasant weather, 
when my father was absent on his preach- 
ing tours, my mother would take such of 
the children as were old enough, and walk 
to church on Sabbath mornings, leaving 
the little ones with her friend Mrs. White- 

One of the chief pleasures of that early 
time was the receipt of letters from the dear 
mother and sisters left behind, for letters 
were indeed like angels' visits then. They 
were full of tender memories and loving 
messag^es for the dear ones over the sea. 
One of my most cherished mementos is a 
letter written to my mother by my Grand- 
mother Osier in October, 1839, in which 
she speaks of her joy in hearing of our safe 
arrival and settlement in our new home and 
of how much she missed my mother, and 
her affectionate longing to see the children 
who were so dear to her. She says, — 

"Kiss the three darling children for me. 
I cannot express my love for them and you, 
nor my feelings on account of the great dis- 
tance between us. I shed many tears in read- 
ing your much valued letter over and over 



again. You are all generally uppermost in 
my thoughts, and I find you wanting more 
than I can describe. I am very glad you like 
the appearance of the country and that you 
were so kindly received. I hope the winters 
will be more mild than we expected, and that 
by the blessing of the Almighty you will 
all be happy and comfortable. Oh ! how I 
would love to see my beloved little Mary, 
and my darling little Joseph, who seems in- 
clined to remember me by expecting to find 
me in his new home, and I should have been 
much pleased to see my dear, sweet, pretty 
little Susan take to run off, but suppose 
the misfortune of pulling the hot tea over 
into her tender bosom put her back some 
time. Pretty dear ! I used to love them all as 
if they were my own." 

She goes on to speak of her health and 
prospects, and in closing says, — 

"I hope the Lord will give me strength 
according to my day, and by His divine 
assistance, may I and all of you be led on by 
His grace in the way to everlasting life." 

Such was the love and blessing which 
descended to us from our godly ancestors. 



As nearly as I can learn, my grandmother 
Osier died in 1842, about three years after 
our coming to America. I well remember 
my mother's grief when the sad tidings 
came, and the black dress she wore for some 
time afterward. Her sisters Julia and 
Philippa soon returned to the Cape of Good 
Hope, where their brother and sisters were, 
and both were married there, but my Aunt 
Julia only lived a short time, dying soon after 
the birth of her first child. The sad news 
came to my mother just before the birth of 
my sister Julia, and she was named for this 
dear sister. My mother always loved dear 
old England with a right loyal affection. 
She always spoke of it lovingly as "Home," 
and cherished a longing desire to revisit it at 
some future day, but she never allowed any 
feeling of homesickness to interfere with 
present duty. Her whole heart was given 
to her family. It was her highest joy to make 
home bright and happy for her husband and 
children, though her heart was large enough 
to take in the church and the neighborhood 
and every one to whom she might do a kind- 
ness. From year to year she toiled patiently 



and quietly on, with very little to relieve the 
monotony of her life. Vacations were a 
thing unheard of in that day, especially for 
women, and though my father made frequent 
journeys to various parts of the country on 
business, it was not thought of as possible 
that the mother could leave her post. But 
her life, so far from being dreary or unsatisfy- 
ing, was bright with the love and confidence 
of her husband and the affection of her chil- 
dren. These were her "joy and crown," 
the approval of the Saviour she loved and 
served was her constant inspiration, and her 
well-stored mind, and her fondness for good 
reading furnished pleasant occupation for 
her leisure hours. 

So the years passed quietly and peacefully 
with little change in the life of the family. 
Two other children came to bless the home, 
Ann Jane, named for her two grandmothers, 
born February 23, 1842, and Julia Osier, 
born June 14, 1845. I must not fail to make 
mention of one who played quite an im- 
portant part in the history of our family at 
this time. This was a young woman named 
Lucinda Andrus, who came into the family 



April 1, 1843. She had employment in the 
factory and assisted my mother in such ways 
as she could for her board. She was a woman 
of excellent Christian character and great 
kindness of heart, though possessed of strong 
peculiarities. She was warmly attached to 
my mother and the children, and very self- 
sacrificing in her efforts to assist in every 
possible way. She was, in this way, a mem- 
ber of our family for many years, passing 
with us through scenes of joy and sorrow, 
always identifying her interests with ours 
and giving the most faithful service and un- 
changing friendship. She was a woman of 
shrewd good sense and often quite witty, 
and her quaint remarks and amusing stories 
and songs enlivened many an evening for 
the children. She was somewhat credulous, 
and had great faith in dreams and omens, 
which we eagerly drank in, somewhat to the 
discomfort of our mother, who was singularly 
free from any trace of superstition, and was 
the very soul of truth in all her conversa- 
tion with her children. Lucinda married 
later in life old Mr. Thomas Morton, who, 
as she herself allowed after his death, was 



not always "the best of husbands," though 
she did think the minister " might have said 
a little more about him at his funeral." Her 
married life was burdened with hard work 
and poverty, but her last years were made 
quite comfortable by the kindness of many 
friends who respected her and were glad to 
assist her. She died in the autumn of 1896. 
She is remembered by the young people of 
our family as "Aunt Lucinda." 

We come now to the time when the clouds 
gathered heavily over the happy family, and 
its sweet light went out in darkness. My 
mother had not been in her usual good 
health during the summer, and had been at 
times a little low-spirited. On Monday, 
July 19, 1848, my father went on a short 
business trip to Boston, and returning found 
my mother quite poorly. On Friday she 
felt decidedly ill and asked Lucinda to re- 
main at home to assist her, which she gladly 
did. That evening my father, who was 
suffering from severe headache, asked my 
mother to offer prayer at the evening wor- 
ship, as she often did, and Lucinda, whose 
recollection of those scenes was very vivid, 



describes it as one of the most remarkable 
prayers she ever heard. The mother's whole 
soul seemed drawn out in special pleading for 
her children, that God would make them 
His own, and would care for them if she 
was taken away from them. On Saturday 
she was much worse, and on Sunday her 
condition was very alarming. The disease 
having developed as malignant erysipelas, 
one of the most experienced and skilful 
physicians from Hartford was called, a good 
nurse put in charge, and all that human skill 
could do was done to save the life so precious 
to us all. But all in vain. It became evident 
during Monday night that the end was near, 
and toward morning the family were gath- 
ered at her bedside for the last farewell. 
She called each separately, and commended 
them to God with her dying blessing. 

Little Julia, only three years old, was in 
my father's arms, too young to realize the 
sad parting. My mother asked, "Where is 
my little Annie.?" My father lifted her 
and she laid her hand on Annie's head, but 
could not speak. My brother Joseph, always 
impulsive and warm-hearted, burst into 



tears, and begged forgiveness for any trouble 
he might have caused her. She spoke words 
of comfort to him and sank back exhausted. 
My father asked her, " Is all well ? " She 
answered, "All is well. It is well with my 
soul." And so in the morning of July 27, 
1848, at 6 A. M., gently and peacefully passed 
away one of the purest and sweetest spirits 
that ever brightened this dark world. Her 
lifework was finished, and she "entered 
into the joy of her Lord." 

No relatives were near enough to comfort 
and help the family in this time of trial, but 
neighbors and friends were unwearied in 
their kindness and sympathy. One instance 
worthy of mention was that of a young girl 
named Delia Foley, who was living with the 
Phelps family and to whom my mother had 
shown kindness as a stranger. She volun- 
teered her services in preparing the dear 
form for burial, which was the more remark- 
able as the disease was of such a nature that 
there was great fear of contagion. This 
fact became known to me by accidentally 
finding Miss Foley, who was now a gray- 
haired woman, in the family of Hon. Joshua 



Hale of Newburyport, where she had been an 
honored and trusted servant for nearly forty 
years. It was a great pleasure to me to meet 
her, and to express to her, in such ways as I 
could, our gratitude for the great kindness 
rendered to the living and to the dead in the 
years so long gone by. I gladly record this 
as an instance of unselfish kindness all too 
rare in a world like this. 

It was in the sultry heat of summer that 
our great loss occurred, and the oppressive 
weather seemed to increase the burden of 
our sorrow. I well remember the desolation 
which settled down over the home on the 
evening of that first sorrowful day. To add 
to the gloom, the storm-clouds gathered 
darkly. The picture is forever printed in my 
memory. The father and his little motherless 
flock were alone in the upper chamber. 
The rain fell in torrents, the thunder crashed, 
and every flash of lightning lit up the sur- 
rounding country and showed the tall row 
of poplars in the distant lane, standing stiff 
and straight against the stormy sky. No 
wonder that my father gave way to the grief 
he could no longer control, and the children 



mingled their tears and sobs with his in 
unutterable sorrow. The funeral service 
was held in the Methodist Episcopal church, 
which was filled with friends who loved and 
honored my mother in life and sincerely 
mourned her death. A funeral sermon was 
preached by her pastor, Rev. M. N. Olm- 
stead, from Acts xxvi, 8, — "Why should it 
be thought a thing incredible with you that 
God should raise the dead .P" — in which the 
sorrowing family were led for comfort to the 
glorious certainty of the resurrection; and 
afterwards the sad procession took its way 
to the cemetery on the hillside. The little 
children with their black bonnets and frocks 
were a pathetic picture which appealed to 
the sympathy of every heart. The last sol- 
emn words were said, and we left her there 
to the peaceful rest of those who sleep in 
Jesus. The inscription on the stone above 
her resting-place — " Blessed are the dead 
who die in the Lord" — was never more 
fitly applied. 

The months passed on, and life resumed 
its usual course, but the painful vacancy was 
sadly felt in the family. A housekeeper was 



obtained who did what she could to fill the 
dreadful void, and our faithful Lucinda 
remained at her post. But there was no real 
harmony, and the children began to show the 
need of a mother's care and love. In this 
dilemma my father's thoughts were turned, 
as was natural, towards some one who mio-ht 
fill the important place, and in February, 
1849, he married Mrs. Sarah G. H. Merritt. 
She was the daughter of one of the old 
and excellent families of the town, and had 
been for years a friend of my father and mo- 
ther, and belonged to the same church. She 
was married when quite young to Mr. James 
Merritt, a young man of much promise, and 
went with him to Spring Hill, Alabama, 
where they were both engaged in teaching. 
In little more than a year he died, leaving 
her a widow before the birth of her first 
child,which occurred soon after. Her adopted 
sister had married Mr. Rush Tuller, a 
merchant in good business at Spring Hill, 
and with them she found a home and all 
needed sympathy and help in this time of 
trial. She was a woman of strong character 
and most indomitable energy, and rising 



above her sorrow, she bravely set herself 
to the task of earning a support for herself 
and her child. She remained in her position 
as teacher till her son was old enough to be 
lieft, and then coming north she left him in 
the care of her mother and grandmother, and 
returned to take up her work. She was a 
woman of very attractive personality and 
pleasant manners, vivacious and entertain- 
ing in conversation, and though she had 
not been without opportunities to change 
her situation, she remained a widow about 
ten years. Such was the person whom my 
father brought to us as our new mother, 
and to make us happy again. There were 
no relatives to interfere or to make unplea- 
sant comparisons, and we received her with 
love and confidence, gladly yielding to her 
the respect and obedience we had been ac- 
customed to give to our own mother, and so 
the family life flowed on harmoniously. It 
was no light task she had undertaken, to 
train a family of five children, and she ad- 
dressed herself to it with her accustomed 
energy and courage. She identified herself 
fully with the family, and made our interests 



her own. She endeavored faithfully to im- 
prove our manners, to teach us to have con- 
fidence in ourselves, and to develop the best 
that was in us, and in every way to promote 
the best interests of us all. 

She brought with her as members of our 
family, her son, a boy of nine years, and her 
mother. It might have been a question 
whether the new elements would mingle 
harmoniously with the old, but in this case 
they certainly did. We were delighted with 
the idea of a new brother, and he and my 
brother Joseph, who was near his age, be- 
came and always continued real brothers 
in heart. They were devotedly attached to 
each other, and were inseparable till my 
brother's death. Her mother, Mrs. D. G. 
Humphrey, was a lady of refinement and 
intelligence. Though delicate in health and 
nervously weak, she bore with commendable 
patience the noise of children, and the rush- 
ing life of such a large family, which was a 
great contrast to the quietness of her former 
life. We rejoiced in the acquisition of a 
grandma, as we had no remembrance of our 
own. She was an honored member of our 



family for many years, and as many of her 
tastes and sentiments were similar to my 
own, we were much together and enjoyed 
each other's society. 

The schools in our town were very un- 
satisfactory, and when I reached the age of 
fifteen it was thought that some better ad- 
vantages should be given me. Accordingly, 
I was sent to Wilbraham Academy, one of 
the oldest and best schools under Methodist 
auspices in all that region. I was to room 
with my friend, Miss Mary Weston, of Sims- 
bury, but as she was not quite ready when 
the term began; I had to begin my experience 
alone. I was taken by my father and mother 
in a carriage to Wilbraham, a distance of 
about thirty miles. I was full of anticipa- 
tion, and all was well as long as they were 
with me, but I shall never forget the heart- 
sinking which overwhelmed me when they 
left me the next day. When I settled down 
at evening in my little bare room alone, I 
could not keep the tears from falling as I 
thought of the pleasant home circle, and 
heartily wished myself among them. The 
school buildings were in sharp contrast to 










the beautiful and nicely adapted appoint- 
ments of most of the schools and colleges of 
to-day. They were plain to severity, and 
some of them showed marks of years of hard 
usage. The halls and rooms of our dormi- 
tory were uncarpeted. Each little room was 
furnished with a bed with dark chintz 
spread, a small study table, two wooden 
chairs, a little box stove for burning wood, 
and a triangular board fastened in the cor- 
ner, with a white muslin curtain, for a wash- 
stand, with a small bookcase above it. 
These, with a small mirror, completed the 
furniture, and dreary enough it looked to me 
on that sad evening. But with the young, 
though "weeping may endure for a night, 
joy Cometh in the morning," and as my 
room-mate soon came, and I began to be ac- 
quainted with the students and interested in 
my studies, I was very happy. The two 
years I spent there were among the happiest 
and most profitable of my life. My sister 
Susan joined me there the second year, and 
afterward my brother Joseph. He was also 
sent later to a school for boys in Norwich, 
Connecticut, and Susan afterwards attended 



a private school in Milford, Connecticut. 
My sisters Annie and Julia were educated 
in the Hartford schools. Annie also studied 
music at Music Vale Seminary, Connecticut. 
Brother James Merritt studied with a pri- 
vate tutor, Mr. T. G. Grassie, of Amherst 

It was the wish of my father that Joseph 
should have a college education, but though 
he had a very bright mind, and was very 
literary in his tastes, and himself a good 
writer, his choice was strongly for a mechan- 
ical training. Accordingly, he was placed 
with the firm of Lincoln Bros, of Hartford 
to learn the business of a machinist, and 
afterwards worked with Woodruff & Beach 
of the same city. He became an expert in 
the business, and some of the finest work was 
entrusted to him. 

I should mention here the birth of two 
other children who were most welcome addi- 
tions to the family circle — George Bickford 
Davey, named for the business partners, 
who was born March 18, 1852, and Sarah 
Jennette, born October 26, 1857. 

The year 1857 was one of severe financial 



crisis. Business of all kinds was almost at a 
stand-still, and hundreds of workmen were 
everywhere discharged. The younger men 
of course were the first to go, and both Jo- 
seph and James, being unemployed, resolved 
to set off for the West and take any chance 
that offered. After a short experience as 
farmers' help, they both obtained schools in 
Illinois. This, however, continued but a 
short time, as business revived, and Joseph 
came home and took a position as machinist 
in the factory. James remained West, and 
was with his uncle Humphrey's family in 
Quincy most of the time till he settled later 
on a farm of his own. 

That year was also marked by deep and 
extensive religious interest, and both bro- 
thers became Christians during that year. 
So all of our family were united in their relig- 
ious life, as in all other things. In December, 
1859, a sad accident cast its dark shadow 
over us. My father's factory was destroyed 
by fire. It was about 8a.m. My father was 
preparing to go to Hartford, and I was stand- 
ing by him near a window, when suddenly 
a sheet of flame shot from beneath the eaves 



of the factory, lifting the roof, and instantly 
the wooden building was enveloped in 
flames. The alarm and excitement were 
intense. A crowd soon collected, and every 
effort was made to check the fire and to 
save those in danger. But the explosion had 
done its deadly work, and eight of the girls 
employed were instantly killed, while others 
were rescued with great difficulty and were 
badly burned. My brother Joseph, who was 
at that time employed in the machine de- 
partment, found himself almost without 
warning buried beneath a mass of falling 
timbers, while flames and smoke poured in 
all about him. He managed to extricate 
himself, and made a brave dash for his life. 
Carrying the window with him, he plunged 
into the race-way of the water-wheel, and so 
escaped, though terribly burned. The sad 
occurrence shrouded the town in gloom. 
The funeral of the eight unfortunate girls 
was an event long to be remembered. The 
company did everything in its power to care 
for the sufferers, and to help the afflicted 
families, bearing all expenses and erecting 
a monument to the dead. 



'' My brother lingered through months of 
terrible suffering. For some time his life 
was despaired of, but at last, by the blessing 
of God on the efforts of the most skilful phy- 
sicians, and with good nursing, he slowly 
recovered. His nervous system, however, 
had received a shock from which he never 
fully recovered. As mother was not at all 
well at that time, most of the day nursing 
fell to me, while kind friends freely offered 
their services for the nights. It was a long 
and trying experience and was followed for 
me with quite a serious illness, but I always 
rejoiced in the privilege of ministering to 
him in this time of greatest need. 

In the autumn of 1860 occurred the excit- 
ing political campaign which resulted in the 
election of Abraham Lincoln as President 
of the United States. I need not describe 
here the gathering of the clouds nor the 
bursting of the storm of civil war, whose 
mutterings had long been heard in the dis- 
tance. My brother was elected a member 
of the Connecticut Legislature for 1861, 
and, though the youngest member, he was 
very popular and made a fine record as a 



speaker on the floor of the House. The war 
was the absorbing topic of the time. Ener- 
getic measures were used to raise troops in 
response to the call of the President. A com- 
mittee of the legislature, of which my brother 
was one, was appointed for this purpose. 
He threw himself into the cause of his coun- 
try with all the ardor of his nature. As he 
labored to induce others to enlist, the convic- 
tion grew upon him that he must go himself, 
or he could not ask others to do so, and when 
the news of the disaster at Bull Run filled 
the country with dismay, the question was 
settled for him. Duty called and he must go. 
The company of young men he had raised 
chose him for its Captain, and in November, 
1861, leaving his home and promising busi- 
ness prospects, he with his company, Co. 
H, joined the Twelfth Connecticut regiment, 
which was soon encamped at Hartford for 
drill. His health was far from strong, and our 
family physician declared he should never 
have consented to his going, but he passed the 
examination and was accepted. He was very 
popular with his men, and they were ready 
to do and dare anything with him. 



The regiment was encamped at Hartford 
for the most of the winter, and in the spring 
was ordered to join Gen. Butler in his expe- 
dition against New Orleans. Before the 
departure, my brother was presented with a 
beautiful sword and sash by his fellow- towns- 
men, as a testimonial of their appreciation of 
his bravery. They left Hartford Feb. 26, 1862. 
The ship was greatly crowded, and the voy- 
age was made with many discomforts, but 
on March 8 they reached Ship Island, where 
they were encamped for some weeks. They 
were not ordered up to New Orleans until 
just after the taking of the city, much to the 
disappointment of the young Captain, who 
was ambitious to see a little of actual warfare. 
They were stationed at Carrollton just above 
the city. The situation was low and un- 
healthy, and my brother, who was greatly 
weakened by an attack of dysentery while 
at Ship Island, was poorly able to resist the 
malaria of the region. He felt his danger, 
and wrote home that if he felt it would be 
honorable, he should be tempted to resign 
and come home. But as the young men he 
had influenced to enlist had not the privilege 



of resigning, he could not feel that he ought 
to leave them. He was attacked by typhoid 
fever soon after the hot weather became in- 
tense. He was ill a few days in his tent, but as 
he grew worse, he was removed to the regi- 
mental hospital, a large house near the camp, 
where he had comfortable quarters and 
excellent care. Kind comrades stood about 
his bed, anticipating with brotherly kindness 
his every want. But the most skilful sur- 
geons and faithful nurses were powerless to 
save him. His system was too much weak- 
ened to resist the disease, and after a short 
illness he passed quietly away on the after- 
noon of Saturday, June 21, exchanging the 
scenes of strife for the land of everlasting 

The sad news was flashed over the wires, 
carrying the deepest sorrow to the home he 
had so lately left. The family gathered and 
waited in silent grief for further particulars. 
A letter from his friend and First Lieutenant, 
George H. Hanks of Hartford, soon told the 
sad story. He gave full particulars of his 
Captain's last hours, and spoke of a conver- 
sation they had just before his sickness, in 



which they mutually promised that in case of 
the death of either, the survivor should take 
charge of his effects and inform his friends, 
and said that he had requested that if he 
should fall, his body should be sent home to 
Simsbury. Lieut. Hanks says, "I promised, 
and to the extent of my ability I have carried 
out his request, assisted by some of his towns- 
men and personal friends who were at his 
bedside at the last hour. The body is sent 
by steamer McLellan, in a cask of spirits, 
carefully fastened in a sitting posture, 
dressed in full military uniform, and when 
it was adjusted he looked so natural, one 
might imagine it was our dear Captain sitting 
asleep in his chair, with his hands folded 
across his lap. But alas ! it is the long, silent 
sleep of death. Dear afflicted friends, it is 
the saddest duty of my life, thus to return 
to you him who a few months since took 
leave of you so buoyant and hopeful, and 
many a tear have I shed while performing 
it. Possessing but few faults and many vir- 
tues, generous to a fault, and honorable to 
the extreme, he was universally esteemed 
and beloved by the entire regiment." 



On arriving at New York, the body was 
transferred to a metallic casket and sent to 
Simsbury. It was met at Plainville by a dele- 
gation of the citizens, who with saddened 
hearts received him who had recently gone 
out from them brave and bright and hopeful. 
The sad home-coming was almost over- 
whelming to the family. They gathered 
sorrowfully to mingle their tears for his early 
death. The body was taken to the Methodist 
Episcopal church, but the public service was 
held in the Congregational church, as the 
other was too small to accommodate the 
numbers who wished to attend. The large 
church was filled with a throng of citizens 
of our own and neighboring towns. Com- 
rades, friends, companions, the Masonic 
fraternity, all came to mingle their tears and 
sympathies with the family and relatives, for 
the brave young life so early sacrificed, and 
to do honor to him whom they all loved and 
lamented so sincerely. The funeral discourse 
was given by the former pastor and dear 
friend of the family. Rev. Ichabod Simmons 
of New Haven, from the text, II Timothy 
iv : 3 — "A good soldier." It was a beautiful 



and appropriate tribute to the departed, with 
words of hope and comfort for those who 
mourned him so truly. After the service he 
was borne tenderly from the Methodist 
church to his last rest in the hillside cemetery 
where he had requested to be laid beside his 
beloved mother. The solemn burial service 
of the Masonic order closed the services, 
and so the second great sorrow settled down 
upon our home. 

My brother was a young man of fine 
natural endowment and a most genial dis- 
position. He was greatly beloved at home, 
and popular everywhere, especially among 
the young people, with whom he was always 
a leader. Mr. Simmons said of him at his 
funeral : " It is a part of my mission to-day 
to say that a young man of promise has 
fallen. An earnest and close debater, a great 
reader of history, with a good memory, and 
an imagination sparkling with poetry and 
beauty, he would have stood high among 
the men of his day. He was a close thinker 
and reasoner, but never anchored outside the 
clear, deep waters of the Bible. He was 
keenly sensitive to the ridiculous, and on 



occasions could be very sarcastic, yet his 
tenderness of feeling prevented his wit from 
wounding the most sensitive. His nature was 
cast in a merry mould, his wit was original, 
and in the social circle he was the happy 
pivot on which the pleasant moments swung. 
The death of our friend is a general loss to 
this community. He was a representative 
spirit among you. As a citizen you had 
already learned to rank him high in your 
esteem. His large circle of young friends 
are especially called to mourn. A bright 
light has gone out among you." 

The affliction fell with crushing force 
upon my father. His heart was almost 
broken, and it was years before he recovered 
from the blow. 

The events which now came into our 
family life were of a more cheerful nature. 
The first break in the home circle was occa- 
sioned by my marriage to Rev. John W. 
Dodge of Newburyport, Massachusetts, 
which occurred November 7, 1860. Mr. 
Dodge was a graduate of Amherst and 
Andover, and had at that time accepted a 
call to be pastor of the Congregational 



church of Gardiner, Maine. Our acquaint- 
ance began by his coming to Simsbury, in 
November, 1855, to teach a select school. 
His friend, Mr. T. G. Grassie of Amherst, had 
taught it the year before with great accept- 
ance and was engaged to return, and as our 
family were greatly interested in him, my 
mother had promised to take him as a 
boarder. He was taken very ill during the 
fall term of college, and being unable to 
fulfil his engagement, he sent his friend as 
substitute. So apparently trivial events 
often change the whole current of our lives. 
We became engaged during that winter, 
which was Mr. Dodge's junior year in col- 
lege. I attended his graduation in August, 
1857, accompanied by my cousin, Sarah 
Jane Tuller, and visited his home in New- 
buryport in the summer of 1859. Though 
hampered by delicate health and small 
means, he completed his theological course 
at Andover in 1860, and our marriage took 
place as soon as he secured a suitable parish. 
The first wedding in the family was a great 
event, and no pains were spared to make it 
a delightful occasion. It was an evening 



wedding, with about fifty guests. My sister 
Susan was bridesmaid, and was attended by 
my husband's brother Austin as best man. 
Our dresses were similar, of figured grey 
silk, mine being trimmed with white silk 
and lace, and I wore a bunch of white 
Japonicas. The ceremony was performed 
by our friend and pastor. Rev. I. Simmons, 
assisted by Rev. Allen McLean,/the blind 
pastor of the Congregational church, to 
whom I was much attached.^ A wedding 
supper was served, followed by a pleasant 
social evening. Mr. Dodge's mother and 
brother were the only friends of his who 
could be present. The good-byes were said 
early the next day and we set our faces toward 
our new home. After several pleasant days 
in Boston, we went to Newburyport, only 
to be met by the sad tidings that Mr. Dodge's 
father had died suddenly on the very day 
of our marriage, and that they were delaying 
the funeral till our arrival. It was a sad 

^ My mother was closely associated for some years before 
her marriage with "Father McLean," as he was affection- 
ately called, reading to him, writing sermons for him, and 
delighting to render him in his blindness such little ser- 
vices as she could. — S. W. D. 



home-coming and clouded the brightness 
of those first days. We remained in New- 
buryport several weeks, and Mr. Dodge 
prepared his first sermon as pastor, in the 
study of his old friend and minister. Dr. 
Dimmick, who had recently died. 

We were most kindly received by the peo- 
ple at Gardiner. Mr. Dodge was ordained 
December sixth, 1860. The sermon was 
preached by Dr. Chickering of Portland, 
and the ordaining prayer was offered by the 
venerable David Thurston. We found a 
pleasant home for ourselves, and my father 
and mother and Mother Dodge came to assist 
in our going to housekeeping. Our outfit 
would seem simple indeed to the young 
people of this day, but love and content 
abode with us, and we were happy. Our 
first great sorrow and disappointment came 
in the loss of a little one to whose coming 
we had looked forward with joy. This was 
followed by months of weakness and ill- 
health for me. My husband's health also 
gave way in the spring, making necessary 
a long summer vacation. Six months of this 
were spent in tenting on Salisbury beach, 



which resulted in great gain to us both. 
Our three years' pastorate in Gardiner 
was pleasant and successful, but a second 
break in health, in the fall of 1863, made a 
resignation necessary, and we came to New- 
buryport to spend the winter with Mother 
Dodge. In December, through the kindness 
of his friend. Captain Robert Bayley, my 
husband was offered a voyage in one of his 
vessels to the West Indies. He sailed for 
Porto Rico in the Edward Lameyer, com- 
manded by Captain Charles Bayley, and 
received much benefit and enjoyment from 
the six weeks' trip. 

After coming home he supplied for some 
time at Northboro, Massachusetts, and in 
the autumn he received a call to Gardner, 
Massachusetts, which he did not accept. 
Later, however, he went to Yarmouth, 
Massachusetts, where he supplied for six 
months for Rev. J. B. Clark, who was with the 
Christian Commission in the Army of Vir- 
ginia. We found a pleasant home with Mr. 
Clark's mother in the parsonage, and greatly 
enjoyed this experience, and as it proved it 
prepared the way for our chief life work. On 



the return of Mr. Clark, in July, 1865, we went 
to Hampton, New Hampshire, where my hus- 
band was immediately called to the vacant 
pulpit of the Congregational church. A 
pleasant pastorate of three years there was 
followed in 1868 by a call to succeed Mr. 
Clark, who had resigned as pastor of the 
Yarmouth church. During our second year 
in Hampton we had adopted a little girl, 
whom we called Mary Webster. She was at 
this time nearly three years old. 

We broke up our Hampton home in the 
cold, dark, December days, and I shall never 
forget how delightful the change seemed 
to the warmth and cheer of the cosy Yar- 
mouth parsonage,; where we spent so many 
happy years. A pastorate of twenty-three 
years followed. The union between pastor 
and people was remarkable. Nothing oc- 
curred to ruffle the harmony during all those 
years. The best of our life work was done 
in Yarmouth, and it was amply rewarded 
by the love and confidence of our people. A 
new church edifice was built the year after 
our coming ; and though the strain of feeling 
was very great in consequence of a change 



of location, and threatened at one time to 
divide the society entirely, the crisis was 
safely passed with the loss of only two or 
three families, and the attachment of all 
to the pastor who had led them safely 
through the conflict remained unshaken. 

In the summer of 1871 we adopted a boy 
of nine months. He was a sweet and pleasant 
child, and for several years was a source of 
much comfort. But as he grew older seeds 
of evil all unsuspected began to spring up, 
and resulted later in bitter disappointment. 

On the fourteenth of November, 1875, 
our dear daughter, Susan Webster, was 
born. It was a boon we had not dared to 
hope for. Our home was radiant with joy. 
The people showered congratulations, and 
gifts poured in to attest the general joy at the 
advent of the parsonage baby. Our Thanks- 
giving Day that year was one to be remem- 

This happy year was followed by one of 
severe trial. My husband's health, never 
very strong, broke down entirely, and a long 
season of complete nervous prostration fol- 
lowed. He kept his bed for months, and at 



last rallied very slowly, appearing again in 
his pulpit after an interval of nine months. 
The love of our people stood the trying test 
bravely. They continued the salary and sup- 
plied the pulpit, and were unwearied in their 
kindness and sympathy. 

In the spring of 1882 we had the long-de- 
sired privilege of a journey to Europe. Our 
people granted us a vacation of six months, 
and the means were furnished by my father. 
We left our little Susie with my sister Susan, 
the other children remaining with friends 
in Yarmouth. It was a season of great en- 
joyment and profit. We visited England, 
Scotland, France, Holland, Belgium, Ger- 
many, Switzerland, and Italy. Returning, 
we spent some pleasant weeks with friends 
in London and Cornwall, and came home 
greatly benefited in mind and body. 

On the 22d of April, 1884, Mother Dodge 
passed to the heavenly rest. Her home had 
been with us for many years. She had been 
failing perceptibly for some time, and disease 
of the heart developed, which caused her 
death, after an illness of a few days. Her 
funeral was attended in Yarmouth by Rev. 



Bernard Paine of Sandwich, and afterward 
she was taken to her old home in Newbury- 
port, and a service was held at the North 
Church, conducted by Rev. Mr. Mills. She 
was then laid to rest in Highland Cemetery, 
by the side of her husband. She was a wo- 
man of strong character and large heart, and 
her life was full of devotion and self-sacrifice 
for her family, as well as usefulness in the 

In the spring of 1889 we took a very de- 
lightful trip to California, visiting the famed 
Yosemite valley, and spending some time 
very pleasantly with my brother James's 
family in Oakland. Soon after our return 
I was seized with a very severe nervous illness 
which centered in my head, causing terrible 
attacks of vertigo. It resulted in shattering 
my health completely, and was followed by 
ten years of invalidism. The next year my 
husband again suffered a serious break- 
down, followed by another long season of 
nervous prostration. It was the result, in 
part, of over-exertion in revival services, 
joined with unusual labors in connection 
with the quarter-millennial celebration of 



the town of Yarmouth. As his strength 
slowly returned, he attempted to take up his 
work again, with the aid of an assistant ; but 
it soon became evident that he was unequal 
to the task, and he was reluctantly obliged 
to resign the office of pastor. He was dis- 
missed October 20, 1891. We removed 
to Newburyport November 7 of the same 
year, and made a home for ourselves there 
on land previously purchased, adjoining 
my husband's old home. We occupied our 
new house for the first time June 2, 1892. 
It has proved a comfort and joy to us, and 
we have both greatly improved in health. 

I cannot close this chapter of our history 
without making special mention of our dear 
friends. Dr. and Mrs. Eldridge of Yarmouth, 
who played such an important part in our 
life there, whose friendship and sympathy 
were so constant and helpful during all the 
years, and whose frequent and well-chosen 
gifts added so much to the brightness of our 
home life, especially of the great kindness 
of Dr. Eldridge in providing a night nurse 
at his own expense all through my husband's 
first long illness. They have both passed to 



their reward, but their memory is a treasure 
to us. Our people also manifested their love 
and appreciation by numerous and valuable 
gifts. A full china dinner and tea service 
were given us at our china wedding, and an 
elegant set of silver forks and a fine cake- 
basket at our silver anniversary. A costly 
and beautiful silver loving-cup was their 
parting gift to my husband. It was appro- 
priately inscribed with the text of his last 
sermon, "God is Love," significant of 
the character of his whole life work. The 
girls of my mission circle also presented a 
silver tray and tea service to me. These, and 
innumerable tokens of love scattered all 
along the way, form a chain of adamant to 
bind our hearts to the dear friends of those 
happy days, many of whom have gone be- 
fore us to the heavenly home. 

In April, 1896, Susie having left Wellesley 
College, her father took her abroad. They 
were accompanied by her friend and class- 
mate, Miss Effie A. Work, of Akron, Ohio. 
My husband's illness on the way obliged 
them to cut short their trip and return home, 
and another long illness followed. He has 



now recovered, and my own health having 
greatly improved, we now gladly "thank 
God and take courage." 

After an interval of some years, caused 
by returning ill-health, I take up again the 
story of our family life. Sadly enough, the 
first record must be of the great sorrow 
which came to us in the years 1903 and 1904. 
On the morning of August 8, 1903, my hus- 
band was taken very suddenly ill with an 
attack of congestion of the brain, while 
standing by his library table. He passed a 
day of great suffering and semi-unconscious- 
ness, and at night was carried up to his bed, 
from which he only arose after months of 
utter prostration. He rallied at last very 
slowly, after an alarming relapse, and so far 
recovered as to be able to come down-stairs 
and walk about the house and mingle with 
the family at the table and otherwise socially. 
He was able to read a little and join in con- 
versation, and greatly enjoyed his daily 
drives. On the evening of June 14 he was 
suddenly seized with a hemorrhage of the 
brain as he w^as retiring for the night, and 



became entirely unconscious. Every pos- 
sible effort was made to arouse him, but all 
was unavailing. He lingered unconscious 
until the evening of June 17, when he passed 
quietly away, and entered into the " rest that 
remaineth for the people of God." My 
daughter Susan was absent from home, 
having gone to Simsbury, to act as brides- 
maid at the wedding of her cousin, Susie 
Alice Ensign. She returned as speedily as 
possible, only to find that her father was 
unable to recognize her. She was with him 
at the last, holding his hand in hers as he 
passed over the dark river. The funeral ser- 
vices were held in the North Church on 
Tuesday, June 21. Prayer was offered at the 
house by Rev. Doctor Cutler of Ipswich, 
a lifelong friend. The procession entering 
the church was led by the pastor, Rev. Mr. 
Newcomb, reading the selections beginning, 
"I am the resurrection and the life." The 
music was by the Temple Male Quartet, 
who sang the hymns, "Rock of Ages" and 
"Abide with Me." Remarks followed by 
Rev. Dr. Cutler and Rev. Bartlett Weston, 
both intimate friends, also a few appropri- 



ate remarks by the pastor. The burial was 
at Oak Hill, the committal service being read 
by Dr. Hovey, and our dear one was laid to 
rest in a quiet, beautiful spot overlooking 
the meadows and hills he had loved so well. 
A granite monument in the form of a St. 
Martin's cross, bearing the inscriptions, 
"Resurgam," and *'I am the resurrection 
and the life," marks his resting-place. 
Beautiful flowers in profusion were sent by 
relatives and friends and by different organ- 
izations in the city in which he had been 
prominent in token of the love and esteem 
in which he was held. The Yarmouth 
church, where most of his life work was 
done, sent two representatives, and an ele- 
gant wreath of ferns and orchids. 

The second marriage in the family was 
that of my sister Susan. She was married 
July 21, 1863, to Ralph H. Ensign, a son 
of one of the oldest and best families of the 
town. Their friendship began in early youth, 
and was fitly crowned by this most happy 
marriage. The wedding took place in the 
Methodist Episcopal church in Simsbury, 



and the ceremony was performed by Rev. 
Arza Hill, then pastor of the church. It was 
in the early days of the Civil War, not long 
after the death of my brother Joseph. The 
family were in mourning at the time, and 
the bride made no change, but was married 
in a gown of white crepe. The reception at the 
home consisted only of the two families, and 
as it was a time of alarms, the men of the 
family had been called in different directions, 
so that only the two fathers were present. 
The wedding was followed by a bridal trip 
to Niagara. 

Mr. and Mrs. Ensign made their home 
in Simsbury, occupying the house on the 
hill now occupied by their daughter, Mrs. 
Robert Darling. Mr. Ensign was in the fuse 
business with my father, and soon became 
a member of the firm. He has been its head 
ever since my father's death, and it has 
steadily prospered under his leadership. 
Their present home, "Trevarno," was built 
in 1881, and they have lived there since that 
time. They have travelled a * great deal, 
especially in England and France. Their 
children : Sarah Isabel, who died at the age 



of four years, Joseph Ralph, Susan Alice, 
Julia Whiting, and Edward William, who 
died at the age of three. They also reared to 
manhood a child, Ralph Newbert, whom 
they took into their family shortly after the 
death of their youngest child, Edward. 

Next in order was my sister Julia, who was 
married on May 29, 1886, to Rev. Charles 
H. Buck of Neponset, Massachusetts, at that 
timepastorof the Simsbury Methodist church. 
He was a graduate of Wesleyan University 
and a young man of much promise, which has 
been abundantly fulfilled in his ministerial 
career. They were married in the Methodist 
church by my father and Rev. Mr. Simmons, 
and left at once on their wedding journey. 
On their return they removed to Westville, 
Connecticut, where Mr. Buck had just been 
appointed pastor. Since then, Mr. Buck has 
filled many of the most important appoint- 
ments in the New York East Conference, 
serving large churches in Brooklyn, Stam- 
ford, Bristol, New Britain, and others. 
He has always been greatly beloved and 
appreciated by his people and urged to re- 
turn to them, particularly at Bristol, where 



he had three pastorates. When he retired 
from the active ministry in 1900, he was 
presented by his people there with a magni- 
ficent loving cup, as well as other tokens 
of their affection. Mr. Buck had previously 
been given the degree of D. D., and he was 
Treasurer of Wesleyan University for a 
number of years after his retirement, be- 
sides holding other prominent positions. 
The Bucks have always been great travellers, 
both in this country and abroad, and spent a 
year travelling in the far East, in 1900-01, 
before settling in a home of their own. On 
their return. Dr. Buck was for a time Pre- 
siding Elder in the New YorkEast Conference 
and also pastor of a large church in Brooklyn. 
In 1903 they built a beautiful Colonial house 
at Yonkers, New York, on land overlook- 
ing the Hudson River, where they now live, 
having their daughter and her interesting 
family near them. 

They adopted two children : William 
Henry and Sarah Humphrey. 

On the 19th of October, 1866, my sister 
Annie was married to L. Stoughton Ells- 



worth of Windsor, Connecticut. He came of 
the straitest of Puritan stock, including the 
historic Ellsworths and Edwardses of Wind- 
sor, and has most creditably borne up the 
reputation of those families. The ceremony 
took place in the Methodist church and was 
performed by his brother-in-law. Rev. C. H. 
Buck, who was assisted by Rev. J. W. Dodge. 
They resided for a short time in Windsor, 
Connecticut, after which they removed in 
April, 1867, to Oakland, California, where 
Mr. Ellsworth had charge of a branch of the 
fuse business, which had been established 
there. They remained there only a few years. 
Two children were born to them there, but 
both died very young, which hastened their 
return to Connecticut, in the autumn of 1871. 
They settled on a fine farm in East Wea- 
togue, but in 1889 they built and occupied 
their present residence in Hopmeadow, and 
Mr. Ellsworth also became a member of my 
father's firm. Their children : Lucy Stough- 
ton, George Toy, Annie Stoughton, Henry 
Edwards, John Stoughton. 

My brother George was married October 
6, 1875, to Mary Seymour of Granby. They 



were married at the bride's home by Rev. 
C. H. Buck, and took a wedding trip to 
Canada. They lived afterwards in my fa- 
ther's family, as George was associated in the 
business. There were no living children. 

My sister Jennie was married April 19, 
1876, to Mr. Charles E. Curtiss of Simsbury. 
They lived for a short time with Mr. Curtiss' 
parents, and then removed to Westfield, 
Massachusetts. Mr. Curtiss was afterwards 
taken into my father's business, and they 
lived in the house adjoining his on the hill. 
Their children: Joseph Toy and Grace 

Having been divorced from Mr. Curtiss, 
my sister Jennie married Mr. Charles A. 
Ensign, December 2, 1890. They settled in 
a very pleasant home in Tariffville, where 
they have since lived, with the exception of a 
short residence in Ottawa, Canada.^ No 

On November 7, 1873, our grandmother, 
Mrs. D. G. Humphrey, who had long been 

^ In the winter of 1908-09, IMr. and IMrs. Ensign bought 
the attractive place in East Weatogue, where they have 
since lived. 




an honored and valued member of our 
family, died at the age of 81. She was a very 
intelligent, and interesting woman, and was 
loved and mourned by us all. 

My brother George died March 25, 1881, 
after a long and trying illness, which even- 
tually weakened him in mind as well as body. 

My stepmother, Sarah G. H. Toy, died 
September 24, 1881. She had a long illness, 
resulting from a shock of apoplexy which 
partially paralyzed her and ended in soften- 
ing of the brain. I was with her when she 
passed away, and closed her eyes for the last 
long sleep. She was a brilliant and interest- 
ing woman, a devoted wife, and a kind 
mother to the children whose care she un- 

After her death my father married Mary 
Seymour Toy, April 11, 1882. One child 
was born to them, Josephine Seymour, born 
January 19, 1884. They continued to live 
in the house on the hill until some years after 
my father's death, which occurred when 
Josephine was three years old. As she grew 
older and the question of a suitable educa- 
tion for her arose, Mrs. Toy removed to 



Hartford, and the old house was closed. It 
was later divided into two parts; the back 
portion was moved away and used as a 
small tenement for the employees of the fac- 
tory, while the rest was rented as it stood. 
Later, in 1904, it also was removed to its 
present position just back of the old site, 
where Mr. Joseph Ensign's house now 
stands. Mrs. Toy and Josephine settled in a 
very pleasant home in Hartford, and the 
latter attended Miss Barbour's school, and 
later went for two years to Miss Porter's 
school in Farmington. On June 5, 1907, 
she was married to Mr. Frederick Starr 
Collins, a son of one of the old and prominent 
families of Hartford. The marriage was a 
very happy one, especially as Josephine and 
her husband still remained with her mother.* 
On the second of April, 1887, my father 

^ On July 20, 1909, five months after my mother's death, 
Josephine Toy Collins died very suddenly at her home in 
Hartford, leaving a baby daughter, little Josephine Toy, 
only two weeks old. Her early death was a terrible blow 
to her young husband and to her mother, to whom she had 
always been a close companion. Her short life was sweet 
and lovely, and a host of sorrowing friends mourned its 
early close. — S. W. D. 



entered into rest. He had been growing 
rather more feeble for some time. He was 
very ill during most of the winter, and was 
confined to his bed a great part of the time. 
His trouble was of such a nature that it was 
impossible for him to lie down, which was 
very distressing, but he bore his sufferings 
with great fortitude and patience. He im- 
proved as the spring came on, and was able 
to walk about the house, and had even been 
out of doors once or twice. I had not been 
able to go to see him during the winter, but 
on the last of March I went to Simsbury. 
He was occupied by business on the first day 
of April, so that I did not see him, but on the 
morning of the second, I went in a driving 
snowstorm to see him. He was just coming 
out of his room as I came in. I was greatly 
struck by his altered and feeble appearance, 
but he received me cheerfully, and we talked 
pleasantly together for an hour. His phy- 
sician. Dr. R. A. White, came in at that time, 
and suggested that he be given a little liquid 
nourishment. As he attempted to swallow 
it, there was a struggle, and he threw back 
his head, groaning heavily. I took his head 



in my arms, and in an instant he had passed 
away. We laid him quietly down, and even 
amid our tears, it was a relief to see him 
lying peacefully after his winter's sufferings. 
The funeral took place in the Methodist 
church. His pastor. Rev. C. W. Lyon, offici- 
ated, assisted by Rev. C. P. Croft. The pro- 
cession passed up the aisle, preceded by the 
pastor reading the beautiful words of the 
burial service, "I am the resurrection and 
the life." The choir sang "Servant of God, 
well done," and "It is well with my soul." 
Mr. Lyon preached from the text, "I have 
fought a good fight ... I have kept the 
faith," and the choir sang, "Thy will be 

Two wreaths were laid upon the casket, 
one of white callas, and in the center was a 
sheaf of wheat. The church was thronged 
with friends and neighbors who came to pay 
their last tribute of love and respect. Over 
one hundred of the employees of the firm 
were present. The bearers were S. C. Eno, 
D. B. McLean, A. G. Case, Erwin Chase, 
J. N. Race, and A. S. Chapman. So he was 
carried forth from the church of which he 



had so long been a pillar, and laid to rest 
on the hillside, in the midst of his family who 
had gone before. So closed a long, honored 
and useful life. *'The memory of the just is 





Susan Webster Dodge, bom November 14, 1875. 
Mart Webster Dodge (adopted), bom January 24, 

George Tot Dodge (adopted), bom June 7, 1872. 

Sarah Isabel Ensign, bom December 19, 1864 ; 

died January 25, 1869. 
Joseph Ralph Ensign, bom November 24, 1868 ; 

married Mary J, Phelps, April 5, 1894. 
Child : Maet Phelps, born February 9, 1902. 
Susan Alice Ensign, born September 7, 1873; 

married Rev. William Inglis Morse, June 15, 


Child : Susan Tot, born July 4, 1905. 
Julia Whiting Ensign, bom October 3, 1878; 
married Robert Darling, May 14, 1902. 
Child : Robert Ensign, born September 19, 1904. 
Edward William Ensign, bom July 5, 1881 ; died 
June 9, 1884. 

LucT Stoughton Ellsworth, bom Febmary 1, 

1868; died April 13, 1870. 
George Tot Ellsworth, bom April 24, 1869 ; died 

October 24, 1869. 
Annie Stoughton Ellsworth, bom September 22, 

1873; Tnarried Emmet Schultz, April 16, 1895. 



Henry Edwards Ellsworth, bom March 27, 1878; 
married Susan Hotchkiss Starr, February 11, 1903. 
Children: John Edwards, born September 15, 1904; 
Mary Amelia, born July 30, 1907; Jane Osler, 
born December 16, 1908. 
John Stoughton Ellsworth, bom August 21, 
1883 ; married Lida Burpee, July 15, 1905, 
Child : John Stoughton, Jr., born June 16, 1907. 

William Henry Buck (adopted), bom March 6, 
1870; married Sadie Fielding, April 25, 1893. 
Child : Julia, born November 3, 1893. 
Sarah Humphrey Buck (adopted), bom June 22, 
1872 ; married Dr. Albert Gushing Crehore, July 
10, 1894. 

Children : Dorothy Dartmouth, born May 17, 1895 ; 
Virginia Davenport, born February 4, 1900; 
Victoria Louise, born February 4, 1900 ; Florence 
Ensign, born August 21, 1903, died November 10, 
1905; Julia Osler, born December 15, 1906. 

Joseph Toy Curtiss, bom December 16, 1878; 
married Abigail Goodrich Eno, December 16, 1899. 
Children : Joseph Toy, Jr., born May 8, 1901 ; Austin 
Eno, born June 15, 1907. 

Grace Gilbert Curtiss, bom September 26, 1883 ; 
married William Pollard Lamb, May 11, 1904. 
Children : William Pollard, Jr., born December 28, 
1906; Richard Humphrey, born February 23, 

Josephine Toy Collins, bom July 5, 1909. 




The following letter from Miss Maude Divine, a 
granddaughter of my mother's Aunt Susan, gives 
a little different account of the events of Benjamin 
Osier's life, as her mother knew them. She says: 

"Our great-grandfather, Benjamin Osier, was a 
merchant in Gibraltar and Cadiz from about 1814. 
Not doing well, he decided to try trading to the West 
Indies, and bought a small vessel and fitted it with 
merchandise. His son, Joseph, who had been a mid- 
shipman in the Navy, went with him, but died at 
Trinidad of yellow fever. On the way home, grand- 
father's vessel was seized by a French privateer, and 
he was imprisoned, where he remained some time, 
unable to communicate with his family. Finally they 
received information of his whereabouts, through the 
Free Masons, and an exchange of prisoners being 
arranged, he came home, a helpless cripple. 

" Just at that time South Africa was being much 
talked of, and he thought he would try his fortune 
there. He brought out most of his family, my grand 
mother being the eldest. He never recovered his 
health, and died about a year afterwards. Our great- 
grandmother then returned to England with the 
younger children. My grandmother, having married 



Lieutenant Coleman of the Navy (who came out in 
their vessel the Weymouth) , decided to remain, as did 
also her young brother, Stephen and a sister, after- 
wards Mrs. Sayers. 

" My grandmother settled at Simon's Town, and 
after her first husband's death had a school, having 
been left with two little girls. She afterwards married 
my grandfather Fineran who was in the Commissariat 
Department of the Army, and mother was their only 
daughter. Her two brothers died as young men. 
There are several descendants of the other Osier 
daughters, grandmother's sisters, about Simon's 
Town whom we have never seen, mother not having 
kept in touch with them after grandmother's death." 

S. W. D.