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"I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times. 
Sayings of old which we have heard and our fathers have told 
us, that the generation to come might know them ; even the chil- 
dren which should be born ; who should arise and declare them 
to their children."— Ps. 78. 

"Tell ye your children of it, and let your children tell their 
children, and their children another generation." — Joel 1 : 3. 




Anniversary Edition 


Traditions and Records of Southwest Harbor 
and Somesville, Nellie Carroll Thornton's won- 
derful history of our area, has been reproduced 
in this facsimile edition as originally published 
in 1938. 

Made possible by the generous support of 
the Southwest Harbor Public Library and Rachel 
Carroll Phalen, niece of the author, all proceeds 
from the sale of this work will go to the South- 
west Harbor Public Library Endowment Fund. 


Copyright © 1988 by Southwest Harbor Public Library 

Acadia Publishing Company 
Bar Harbor, Maine 



Section I. History of Mount Desert 

Mount Desert Island, 1 

Early Visitors at Mount Desert, 19 

Origin of Land Titles at Mount Desert, 23 

Early Settlers of Western Part of Mount Desert Island, 27 

Mount Desert Plantations, 28 

Mount Desert Towns, 33 

Manners and Customs, 36 

Population, 42 

Section II. Southwest Harbor 

Churches — Congregational, Baptist, Methodist, Episcopal, 

Christian Science, Sewing and Benevolent Societies, 45 

Schools, 78 

Industries, 88 

Mount Desert in War, 94 

Mails, 102 

Professional Men, 105 

Physicians by Dr. J. D. Phillips, 107 

Libraries at Southwest Harbor and Manset, 114 

Village Improvement Association, 118 
Lodges, Orders and Societies — Masons, Odd Fellows, 
Eastern Star, Rebekahs, Good Templars, K. of P., 
Boy Scouts, Red Cross, Friday Club, Chamber of 

Commerce, 121 

History of the Houses of Southwest Harbor, 124 

To the Old Cemetery by Grace Dufifield Goodwin, 208 

Old Burying Grounds, 209 


Section III. Somesville 

Betwixt the Hills, or Somesville, 239 

Church, 244 

Schools, 248 

Shipbuilding, 249 

Lodges, Orders and Societies, 252 

Indians, 254 

Houses of Somesville, 256 

Brookside Cemetery, 275 

Section IV. Cranberry Isles 

The Cranberry Isles, 279 
Lighthouses on Southern Coast of Mount Desert by 

Sarah C. Kittredge 291 

Town Hill, 294 

Hall Quarry, 295 

Purchase of Mt. Vernon, 296 

Section V. Song and Story 

How Shall We Pronounce Mount Desert? 300 

The Story of Isabel Asbell, 301 

Bear Hunters of 1836 or Hadley and the Bears, 309 

Legend of the Jesuit's Ring, 311 

Mount Desert Pioneers by Caroline R. Lawler, 315 

A Fish Story by Harriet R. Murphy, 325 

A Persistent Tradition, 327 

Southwest Harbor's Most Famous Legend, 329 

Coming on Allowance by Susan Gott Babbidge, 334 

The Flying Place, 339 

Mount Desert Bridge, 340 

Index of Names, 342 


"No part of a book is so intimate as the Preface. Here, 
after the long- labor of the work is over, the author descends 
from his platform and speaks with his reader as man to man, 
disclosing his hopes and fears, seeking sympathy for his difficul- 
ties, offering defense or defiance, according to his temper, 
against the criticisms which he anticipates." So runs the intro- 
ductory note to the volume of Prefaces in Dr. Eliot's Five Foot 

In sending out this collection of the history, tradition, etc., 
of our beautiful island, I am aware that it has many imperfec- 
tions, and though all possible care has been taken in the inter- 
ests of accuracy, there are doubtless many errors which will be 
recognized. I can but borrow from the works of William Cax- 
ton, first printer of England, who closed many of his Prefaces 
with such words as these : "And I require and beseech all such 
that find fault or error, that of their charity they correct and 
amend it." 

The intimate local history of but two of the settlements on 
Mount Desert Island is herein given; that of Somesville and 
Southwest Harbor — the two oldest of them all. 

Dr. George E. Street in his excellent History of Mount 
Desert Island, gives much of the local history and genealogy 
of Bar Harbor, Hull's Cove and vicinity ; the Women's Club of 
Northeast Harbor is collecting material for a history of their 
village, and a history of Tremont is being written by a former 
resident of that town. 

Therefore, to avoid repetition, I have confined my account 
of local happenings to the two communities mentioned above. 
Manset and Seawall are a part of the town of Southwest Harbor. 
For the greater part of the local details I am indebted to the 


late Miss Mary Ann Carroll and Mrs. Ella L. Whitmore, whose 
rich store of memories yielded material which could not be 
obtained elsewhere. I am grateful to the many who assisted 
me with the loan of valuable books, letters and papers, as well 
as with the treasures of their memories. Some of those to whom 
I am under obligations are Mrs. Kate L. Pray, Mrs. A. C. Fer- 
nald, Mrs. J. A. Somes and Mrs. George A. Somes of Somesville, 
Mrs. Fred P. Barker of Brewer, Mrs. S. Louise Smallidge of 
Northeast Harbor, Freeman J. Lurvey of Somerville, Mass., Mrs. 
Cora Kelley of Bernard, Mrs. Harriet Murphy of Rumford, and 
among the many in Southwest Harbor who cheerfully lent me 
much aid are Mr. and Mrs. Everett G. Stanley, Mrs. Clarence 
Clark, Mrs. Lucinda Johnson, Mrs. Elmer A. Stanley, Mr. and 
Mrs. B. T. Dolliver, Mrs. Mattie Moore Dolliver, Mrs. Mary 
Kaler, Mrs. Lyman Harper, Mrs. Ella Robinson, Mrs. Sarah 
Billings Robinson and many others. 

I thank also those who permitted me to use articles which 
they had written. To those who were able to direct me to 
sources of assistance I am also grateful. In the words of an- 
other, "I thank not only him who has digged out treasure for 
me, but also him that hath lighted me a candle to the place." 

My thanks are due to Rachel Field, who allowed me the use 
of a quotation from one of her poems ; to Dodd, Mead and Com- 
pany of New York, who permitted me to quote from Holman 
F. Day's poem, "Heavenly Crown Rich" ; to the authorities of 
Acadia National Park, who gave me the privilege of using some 
of their material and to many other friends who assisted me in 
numberless ways. 

Prof. William O. Sawtelle has given me valuable information 
on many subjects. 

And so, with the assistance of these friends and many others, 
as the Psalmist says, "I have considered the days of old, the 
years of ancient times." 

Nellie C. Thornton. 
Southwest Harbor, Maine 
March 1, 1938. 


The first appearance of the name Mount Desert on the pages 
of written history is in September of 1604 when Samuel de 
Champlain of France, soldier, sailor and explorer, records his 
discovery of the island sixteen years and more before the coming 
of the Pilgrims to Cape Cod. He had come out the previous 
spring with the Sieur de Monts, a Huguenot gentleman, a 
soldier and the governor of a Huguenot city of refuge in south 
western France, to whom Henry IV.— "le grand roi"— had in- 
trusted, the December previous, establishment of the French 
dominion in America. De Monts commission, couched in the 
redundant, stately language of the period, is still extant, and its 
opening words are worth recording, so intimate and close is the 
relation of the enterprise to New England history : 

"Henry, by the grace of God, King of France and of Navarre, to our 
dear and well-beloved friend, the Sieur de Monts, gentleman in ordinary to 
our chamber, greeting : As our greatest care and labor is and has ever been 
since our coming to this throne to maintain it and preserve it in its ancient 
greatness, dignity and splendor, and to widen and extend its bounds as 
much as may legitimately be done, We having long had knowledge of the 
lands and territory called Acadia, and being moved above all by a single- 
minded purpose and firm resolution We have taken, with the aid and 
assistance of God, Author, Distributor and Protector of all States and 
Kingdoms, to convert and instruct the people who inhabit this region, at 
present barbarous, without faith or religion or belief in God, and to lead 
them into Christianity and the knowledge and profession of our faith and 
religion. Having also long recognized from the accounts of captains of 
vessels, pilots, traders, and others, who have frequented these lands how 
fruitful and advantageous to us, our States and subjects might be the 
occupation and possession of them for the great and evident profit which 
might be drawn therefrom, We, in full confidence in your prudence and the 
knowledge and experience you have gained of the situation, character, and 
conditions of the aforesaid country of Acadia from the voyages and so- 
journs you have previously made in it and neighboring regions, and being 
assured that our plan and resolution being committed to your care you will 
diligently and attentively and not less valorously and courageously, pursue 

2 Traditions and Records 

them and lead them to completion, have expressly committed them to your 
charge and do constitute you by these presents, signed by our hand, our 
lieutenant general, to represent our Person in the lands and territory, the 
coasts and confines of Acadia, to commence at the fortieth degree of latitude 
and extend to the forty sixth degree. And We order you throughout this 
territory as widely as possible to establish and make known our name and 
authority, subjecting to these and making obedient to them all the people 
dwelling therein, and by every lawful means to call them to the knowledge 
of God and the light of the Christian faith and religion." 

De Monts, sailing in the spring of 1604, founded his first col- 
ony on an island in the tidal mouth of a river at the western 
entrance of the Bay of Fundy — "Baie Francoise", he named it, 
though the Portuguese name "Bahia Funda", Deep Bay, in the 
end prevailed — vi^hich, two centuries later, in memory of it was 
selected to be the commencement of our national boundary. 
While he was at work on this he sent Champlain in an open 
vessel with a dozen sailors to explore the western coast. A sin- 
gle long day's sail with a favoring wind brought him at night- 
fall into Frenchman's Bay, beneath the shadow of the Mount 
Desert mountains, and his first landfall within our national 
bounds was made upon Mount Desert Island in the township 
of Bar Harbor. 

Champlain writes thus in his journal published in 1613 : 

"Setting out from the mouth of the St. Croix and sailing 
westward along the coast, we made, the same day some twenty- 
five leagues and passed by many islands, reefs and rocks which 
sometimes extended more than four leagues out to sea. The 
islands are covered with pines, firs and other trees of an inferior 
sort. Among the islands are many fine harbors but undesirable 
for permanent settlement. 

The same day (Sept. 5, 1604) we passed near to an island 
some four or five leagues long in the neighborhood of which we 
just escaped being lost on a rock that was just awash and which 
made a hole in the bottom of our boat. From this island to the 
main land on the north the distance is not more than a hundred 
paces. The island is high and notched in places so that from 
the sea it gives the appearance of a range of seven or eight 

Mount Desert Island 3 

mountains. The summits are all bare and rocky. The slopes 
are covered with pines, fir and birches. I named it Isle des 
Monts Desert." 

The next day he writes, "We sailed two leagues and saw 
smoke in a cave at the foot of the mountains. Two canoes with 
savages in them came within musket range to observe us. I 
sent out our two savages in a boat to assure them of our good 
will, but their fear of us made them turn back. On the morning 
of the next day they came alongside and talked with our savages. 
I ordered biscuit, tobacco and other trifles to be given them. 
These savages had come (to the island) to hunt beavers and 
catch fish. We made our alliance with them and they agreed 
to guide us to their river of Pentagoet (Penobscot)." 

To commemorate the three hundredth anniversary of Cham- 
plain's visit to Mount Desert there is erected at Seal Harbor a 
rough granite boulder upon the front of which is a bronze tablet 
inscribed with the dates of his birth and death and the added 
information that it was this "Soldier, Sailor, Explorer and 
Administrator who gave this Island its name." Upon the re- 
verse of the monument is another tablet containing those lines 
from Champlain's Journal written 5 Sept. 1604, where he notes 
the discovery and naming of the Island. 

And an imposing, everlasting memorial to Champlain is the 
easternmost height of the Mount Desert range, now named 
Champlain Mountain, which stands sentinel-like at the entrance 
to Frenchman's Bay ; a fitting tribute, steadfast and resolute to 
the memory of this man, founder and first Governor of Quebec, 
Queen of Cities, discoverer and godfather of Mount Desert, 
Queen of the Isles. 

The next summer, June 18, 1605, Champlain in company 
"with de Monts, several gentlemen, twenty sailors and an Indian 
with his squaw" set forth from St. Croix on a voyage of dis- 
covery and went as far as Nausett Harbor on Cape Cod. It is 
of interest to realize that de Monts was seeking for a better spot 
than St. Croix in which to found his colony and that in this 
voyage along the beautiful New England coast he found no 
place that was any more to his liking than the little island in the 
river where his followers had settled. 

4 Traditions and Records 

The first attempt to make a permanent settlement on Mount 
Desert Island began when, on March 12, 1613, the little ship 
Jonas sailed from Honfleur, France, for the shores of New Eng- 
land. The expedition had been financed by Madame de Guer- 
cheville and her Jesuit friends who were prepared to take posses- 
sion of the lands across the sea. Wealthy penitents poured out 
their money for the enterprise. The Jonas had on board forty- 
eight sailors and colonists including two Jesuits — Father Quen- 
tin and Brother Gilbert Du Thet. She carried also horses and 
goats and many stores of necessaries and comforts for the new 
colony. A courtier named La Saussaye was chief of the colony 
and Capt. Charles Fleury commanded the ship. His written 
account of the voyage is still in existence. The Jonas crossed 
the ocean, touched at La Heve for religious services, then to 
Port Royal where they found the colony making a desperate 
struggle to find enough food to keep them alive. The two Jesuits 
of the Port Royal settlement were glad to come on board and 
cast in their fortunes with those on the Jonas. 

Well for us of later days that they did so as Father Biard's 
Journal is the source of information regarding incidents of the 
experiences to come. 

"We were detained" writes Father Biard, "five days at Port 
Royal by adverse winds, when a favorable northeaster having 
arisen we set out with the intention of sailing up Pentagoet 
(Penobscot) River to a place called Kadesquit, which had been 
chosen for our new residence and which possessed great advan- 
tages for this purpose. But God willed otherwise for when we 
had reached the southeastern coast of the Island of Menan the 
weather changed and the sea was covered with a fog so dense 
that we could not distinguish day from night. We were greatly 
alarmed for this place is full of breakers and rocks upon which, 
in the darkness, we feared our vessel might drift. As the wind 
did not permit us to put out to sea, we remained in this position 
two days and two nights, tacking sometimes one way, sometimes 
another, as God inspired us. Our tribulation led us to pray to 
God to deliver us from danger and send us to some place where 
we might contribute to His glory. 

Mount Desert Isi^and 5 

He heard us in His mercy, for on the same evening we began 
to discover the stars and in the morning the fog had cleared 
away. We then discovered that we were near the coast of 
Mount Desert, an island which the savages call Pemetic* The 
pilot steered toward the eastern shore and landed us in a large 
and beautiful harbor. We returned thanks to God, elevating 
the Cross and singing praises with the holy Sacrifice of the 
Mass. We named the place and harbor St. Sauveur." 

While they were anchored, probably near Schooner Head, 
the sailors fell to arguing about the terms of their engagement. 
The agreement made with them in France was, that they were 
bound to put into any port in Acadia that should be designated 
by the Jesuits and remain there three months. The sailors 
wished to know if the time of their stay should be reckoned from 
the landing at La Heve, the anchoring at Mount Desert or the 
proposed arrival at Kadesquit. Capt. Fleury took the part of 
the sailors but nothing was decided. 

"While this question was pending", writes Father Biard, "the 
savages made a fire in order that we might see the smoke." 
Biard lost no time in visiting them and recognized them as some 
whom he had met on his exploring trip of two summers before. 

These savages asked the colonists to settle at Pemetic (Mount 
Desert) saying that it was "quite as good a place as Kadesquit." 
Then, seeing that the French had no intention of settling there, 
they urged the priests to go with them to their village, as their 
chief Asticou was very sick and wished for Christian baptism, 
adding that if they did not come to him "he will burn in hell 
and it will be all your fault." 

So Biard entered a canoe and was paddled away "for three 
leagues" to what is now Northeast Harbor. They came to the 

* Mrs. Fannie Hardy Eckstorm of Brewer, JIaine, a well known 
authority on Indian languages says of the name Pemetic — "A better 
modern form would be Pemadnek, from pent-, extended; adn, inseparable 
root for mountain; ek, locative ending, equivalent to a capital letter 
in English — "The Mountain Range". Of course this implies that it is 
seen from a distance as a landmark. 

If you prefer a briefer form, then say, "A range of hills (as seen 
from a distance.)" This indicates that the phrase in parentheses is not 
in the roots of the word but is merely explanatory. 

D and T are often very hard to distinguish when an Indian is speak- 
ing and the N is easy to elide. Hence the two names Pemadnek and 
Pemetic. The old explorers were not careful philologists and often 
thought it made little difference how they took down a word. 

6 Traditions and Re^cords 

Indian village on Manchester's Point where the Great Chief was 
found to be suffering from a heavy cold in the head. The astute 
Indians had used this as a pretext to induce the white men to 
view the place where they wished them to settle. This scheme 
proved successful. It was unanimously decided to settle there. 

The ship was brought around the hills, the company landed, 
planted a cross and began their labors. Father Biard describes 
the site thus : 

"This place is a beautiful hillside, sloping gently from the 
seashore and supplied with water from a spring on either side. 
There are from twenty-five to thirty acres covered with grass, 
which in some places reaches the height of a man. It fronts the 
south and east. The soil is rich and fertile. The harbor is as 
smooth as a pond, being shut in by the large island of Mount 
Desert, besides sheltered by certain smaller islands which break 
the force of the winds and waves and fortify the entrance. It 
is large enough to hold any fleet and ships can discharge within 
a cable's length from the shore. It is in latitude 44^/^ degrees 

north, a position more northerly than that of Bordeaux 

When we had landed in this place and planted the Cross, we be- 
gan to work and with the work began our disputes, the omen 
and origin of our misfortunes. The cause of these disputes was 
that our Captain, La Saussaye, wished to attend to agriculture 
and our other leaders besought him not to occupy the workmen 
in that manner and so delay the erection of dwellings and forti- 
fications. He would not comply with this request, and from 
these disputes arose others, which lasted until the English 
obliged us to make peace in the manner I am about to relate." 

Father Biard's description plainly identifies the site of Saint 
Sauveur and it is agreed by all historians that the place was at 
Femald Point, Southwest Harbor, at the entrance of Somes 
Sound. On the opposite shore at Manchester Point are found 
heaps of clam shells and arrow heads, sinkers and other Indian 
relics. These too are found at Fernald Point. 

But the little Jesuit settlement was not destined to endure. 
Sailing north from Virginia to the islands on the coast of Maine 
on a voyage "to fish for cod" as he wrote in his letter to Nicholas 
Hawes, came Capt. Samuel Argall in the ship Treasurer of 

Mount De;se;rt Island 7 

Jamestown, Va. He really had a more important errand for he 
had been commissioned by the Governor of Virginia to expel 
the French from any settlement which they might have made 
within the limits of King James's patents. 

Some Indians fishing in Penobscot Bay, boarded the vessel 
and made known to the Captain that "Normans were building 
houses at Pemetic." Argall by questions and signs learned the 
position and number of the colonists and felt that his ship of 
one hundred thirty tons, his sixty men and fourteen guns and 
himself were more than a match for them. He told the Indians 
that the Normans were friends of his and that he longed to see 
them. So he persuaded one of them to be his pilot and steered 
for Mount Desert. 

The Treasurer sailed into the broad harbor, drums beating 
and flags flying and there was the little French ship anchored 
off the shore at the mouth of Somes Sound and four white tents 
on the grassy slope between the water and the woods. 

The horrified Indian, who thought he was guiding a friend to 
a delightful reunion with old acquaintances, broke into a howl 
of lamentation when he saw Argall's men preparing to fight. 

Now imagine the distress and confusion on the shore. The 
pilot of the French ship, whose name was Bailleul, put off in a 
boat to meet the incoming craft, but the sight of the fourteen 
guns, seven on a side and the very evident preparations for 
hostilities, made him hide behind Greening's Island. La Saus- 
saye lost presence of mind and could give no orders for defence. 
La Motte, his lieutenant, with Capt. Fleury, the Jesuit Du Thet, 
an ensign, a sergeant and a few others managed barely to get 
on board the Jonas when Argall bore down upon them with 
noise of drums and trumpets and replied to their hail with a 
volley of cannon and musket shot. Capt. Fleury shouted to his 
men to return the fire, but there was no gunner to obey. Du 
Thet, the ardent one, seized and applied the match but forgot 
to aim the cannon so, although Biard's record says, "The cannon 
made as much noise as the enemy's" there was no other result. 
Another volley from Argall's ship and Brother Gilbert Du Thet 
fell mortally wounded. Other shots rattled across the deck of 
the Jonas from which there was no reply and then the English 
lowered a boat and boarded her. 

8 Traditions and Re^cords 

Dead and wounded men lay strewn about the deck. La Motte 
with sword in hand showed fight to the last. Capt. Fleury was 
wounded and La Saussaye had fled to the woods where he was 
hidden.* The English landed on the shore and observed the 
preparations, the stores and supplies, the buildings and tents. 
Argall asked for the commander but he could not be found, so 
the Englishman searched his chests and boxes, found his letters 
and commissions from the French authorities and took posses- 
sion of them. 

The next morning La Saussaye ventured forth from his hid- 
ing place realizing that death by starvation would be his lot if 
he remained in hiding. The English Commander received him 
ceremoniously, telling him that the country belonged to King 
James of England and asking for his authority for encroaching 
upon it, assuring the frightened French leader that he would 
"respect the commissions of the King of France that the peace 
between the two nations might not be disturbed." Therefore, he 
requested that the commissions might be shown to him. 

La Saussaye opened his chests. The royal letters were not 
to be found. Then Argall's courtesy was changed to wrath. He 
denounced the Frenchmen as robbers and pirates and took their 
property on board his ship where it was divided among his 

The French on the shore were in a distressing situation. 
The English sailors had taken most of their clothing with the 
other spoils. "It is difficult", says Father Biard, "to believe how 
much sorrow we experienced during this time for we did not 
know what was to be our fate." 

Parkman says that "in other respects the English treated 
their captives well — except two of them which they flogged ;" 
and says of Argall, "He took the Jesuits to his own table and 
showed no unkindness to any." 

The question of how to dispose of the prisoners was a serious 
one. Argall had no desire to take them to Virginia and he could 

* "With Gilbert du Thet two sailors were killed. Biard writes, "They 
w^ere both promising' young' men". Their names were LeMoine from 
Dieppe and Nenon of Beauvais. Evidently the English victors must have 
remained some time at the scene of conflict as the Jesuit Relations say 
that the bodies of the two young men mentioned above, who were 
drowned when attempting to swim ashore from the Jonas, "were found 
nine days afterwards and carefully buried". 

Mount Desert Island 9 

not leave them where they were. Finally, after much discussion, 
La Saussaye elected to try to reach the French fishing grounds 
on the Banks of Newfoundland where he hoped to find the 
vessels of his countrymen who would take him to France. 
Accordingly, he and Father Masse and thirteen others were given 
a boat and provisions and, joined by the pilot and his boat, they 
rowed and sailed eastward until they met two French trading 
vessels on the southern coast of Nova Scotia and they were taken 
safely to St. Malo. Fathers Biard and Quentin, Capt. Fleury, 
the mate La Motte and the rest of the company with the Jonas, 
were taken to Virginia where Governor Dale wished to hang 
them all and probably would have done so but for Capt. Argall's 

Argall is often described as a tyrannical monster and his 
attack on St. Sauveur is held up to horrified listeners as proof 
of his cruelty. The fact is, he was acting under orders from his 
superiors and according to his instructions it was his duty to 
expel all French invaders from English lands. His treatment 
of the prisoners is described by Biard as courteous and kindly. 

Gilbert Du Thet reminds us of Gabriel in The Wandering 
Jew in his ardor for the Jesuit cause. He died the day after he 
was wounded and thus his prayers were granted, for Biard wrote 
that "on our departure from Honfleur he had raised his hands 
towards heaven, praying that he might return no more to France, 
but that he might die laboring for the salvation of souls and 
especially of the savages. He was buried the same day at the 
foot of a large cross which we had erected on our arrival." 

And so the young French Brother and the companions who 
died with him have slept for more than three hundred years in 
unmarked graves on the grassy slope of Fernald Point. 

The length of the stay of the Jesuit colony at Fernald Point 
cannot be accurately stated. Historians who have declared them 
to have lived there and worked among the Indians for some 
years are mistaken. According to Father Biard's Relation their 
stay could have been but a few weeks at the most. 

On the arrival of the Treasurer at Jamestown, Governor 
Thomas Dale was filled with rage by the attempt of France to 
make a settlement on territory claimed by the English King and 
he directed Argall to return at once to the coast of Maine to 

10 Traditions and Records 

demolish the buildings which the French had begun and to "wipe 
off all stain of French intrusion from shores which King James 
claimed as his own." 

This action was entirely unauthorized as the colony at Vir- 
ginia had no jurisdiction over any part of North America. But 
Argall acted under orders from Governor Dale and in the Treas- 
urer, and accompanied by the captured ship Jonas and another 
smaller vessel, he sailed north on what Parkman calls "his errand 
of havoc." Biard and Quentin embarked with him. 

They landed at Mount Desert, destroyed every vestige of the 
work of the colonists, cut down the cross where Gilbert du Thet 
lay buried, sailed on to St. Croix island and demolished all that 
remained there, then went on to Port Royal where they destroyed 
all buildings, uprooted the crops, killed the animals, carried off 
even the locks and bolts of the doors and then set fire to the 
pitiful wreck of the settlement. 

Thus perished the hopes and plans of Madame de Guerche- 
ville for the establishment of Jesuit dominion on the shores of 
our land. The only redress she obtained for the destruction of 
her property was the return to her of the Jonas. Her dream of 
colonization vanished but her name is forever linked with the 
history of Mount Desert Island. 

The destruction of the Jesuit colony at Mount Desert was the 
first act of overt warfare in the long struggle between France 
and England for the control of North America. 

For nearly a century and a half there was no attempt made 
at settling the rocky shores of Mount Desert Island. But the 
harbors were not entirely solitary and deserted during those 
years. Fishing vessels from several European countries had 
coasted every summer along the shores of New England soon 
after Columbus' discovery, if not before, and it is not likely that 
Southwest Harbor remained unknown to those sailors. 

In several maps of the sixteenth century, New England and 
the neighboring states and provinces are set down as Terre des 
Bretons or Tierra de los Bretonnes and there is a tradition that 
Bretons and Basques visited the northern shores of America 
before the voyage of Columbus. 

This is but tradition but Parkman records it and goes on to 
say, "There is some reason to believe that this fishery existed 

Mount Desert Island U 

before the voyage of Cabot in 1497; there is strong evidence 
that it began as early as the year 1504; and it is well established 
that in 1517 fifty Castilian, French and Portuguese vessels were 
engaged in it at once; while in 1527, on the third of August, 
eleven sail of Norman, one of Breton and two of Portuguese 
fishermen were to be found in the Bay of St. John." 

John Verranzo coasted the seaboard of Maine in 1524; Rober- 
val and Lescarbot with their French ships, Menendez of Spain, 
the ships of Francis Popham all cruised along Maine shores in 
the early part of the sixteenth century. In 1522, because of the 
heavy interest owned by Englishmen in American fisheries, we 
are told that several men-of-war were sent out to escort home 
the returning vessels. These ships may have lain at anchor 
under the shadow of Mount Desert hills. 

In 1603 Capt. Martin Pring sailed along the Maine shores 
and historians relate that "during the next few years the coast 
of Maine and the shores of Massachusetts were carefully studied 
for sites for settlements. 

Capt. Weymouth sailed along the New England coast in 1605 
and captured three natives on the Maine shores which he sold or 
gave to Sir Ferdinando Gorges. Capt. Hannam, sent to assist 
Capt. Henry Challons in investigating the New England shores 
with a view to colonization, took back to the Plymouth Company 
in England "the most exact discovery of that coast that ever 
came into their hands." It is not likely that these captains failed 
to visit and to map "one of the largest and best harbors north 
of Chesapeake Bay." 

Brencourt, in August of 1611, had also made a careful study 
of the coast from St. Croix to the Kennebec. It is recorded that 
in 1607 there was an old fisherman of France named Savolet 
found at Nova Scotia, who claimed to have voyaged to these 
fishing grounds for forty-two consecutive years and in 1608 
when Champlain arrived at Tadoussac he found Basque fisher- 
men and fur traders carrying on a brisk trade with the Indians. 
According to Father Biard more than five hundred French ves- 
sels sailed annually at this time (1614) for the whale and cod 
fishing and the fur trade." 

With all these ships sailing up and down the New England 
coast it is more than reasonable to suppose that many of them 

12 Traditions and Records 

had found refuge from heavy seas in Southwest Harbor and that 
the place was well and widely known among seamen. Doubtless 
many times during that century and a half the eyes of French, 
Spanish, Portuguese and English sailors had looked upon the 
Mount Desert hills and the keels of their ships had ruffled the 
waters of Southwest Harbor. 

French, Dutch, Portuguese and English coins have been fre- 
quently found at Manset, Seawall and at High Head at Center 
and their dates show that voyagers from these countries must 
have been here in the early fifteen hundreds. 

"The gray and thunder-smitten pile 
That marks afar the Desert Isle" 

can be seen sixty miles out to sea and is the first landmark along 
the Maine coast for mariners. 

A "Guide to Mount Desert" published in Boston in 1878 says, 
"It was in Somes Sound that Henry Hudson anchored his little 
vessel, the Half Moon, in 1609 when on his way south to explore 

the Hudson River Here Hudson delayed some time and 

cut a new foremast. Here also, to possess himself of the peltry 
of the savages, he attacked them with cannon and musketry. 
He probably landed not far from Fernald Point where the Jesuits 
attempted a colony in 1613. . . . This is perhaps the first and 
last time that Dutch cannon ever resounded in Somes Sound 
where Argall's guns were heard four years later." 

The records of the third voyage of Henry Hudson to America 
in 1609 when he discovered the Hudson River, tell us that he lost 
his foremast in a great gale, that on July fifteenth, when he 
came to the coast of the New World it was enveloped in a dense 
fog; that he "entered a deep bay" and there his men cut, made 
and stepped a new mast. While this was being done the ship 
lay at anchor. Geographers agree that this must have been on 
the coast of Maine and that "the deep bay" was Penobscot Bay. 

There is a story told by one historian that the ship was 
anchored in Southwest Harbor while the repair work was being 
done and that the mast was cut on the shores of Somes Sound. 

Hudson's own record says that after the ship was ready to 
sail, while Hudson was attending to the last details, some of his 
men took their boat and their guns and went to the settlement 

Mount Desert Island 13 

of the Indians, who had been friendly and generous with them, 
and "drove the savages from their houses and took the spoil 
of them as they would have done to us." 

It would seem that if the Indians had been so cruelly treated 
in 1609 by the white men, they would not have welcomed the 
coming of the Jesuits to Femald Point four years later. But 
there is the story and at this day it can neither be verified or 

On Nov. 19, 1622, Robert Mansel, an Englishman, purchased 
the island of Mount Desert for 110 pounds; but as he made no 
settlement or improvement he could not hold it. It was called 
Mount Mansel for some years. 

In 1688, seventy odd years after the wrecking of the Jesuit 
settlement, private ownership began. Mount Desert Island and 
two square leagues upon the opposite mainland were granted as 
a feudal fief by the Goverment of Quebec and Louis XIV to 
Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, a soldier of Acadia who became 
its Seigneur. He is recorded as living with his wife upon the 
eastern shores of Mount Desert Island on May 11, 1688. Later 
he became the founder of Detroit but he still signed himself in 
his later documents, in ancient feudal fashion, Seigneur des 
Monts deserts. 

In 1713, Louis XIV defeated on the battlefields of Europe 
by the treaty of Utrecht, ceded all Acadia save only Cape Breton 
with the strong fortress of Louisberg to England. But the war- 
fare went on until the capture of Louisberg in 1758 and the fall 
of Quebec in 1759, which marked the final downfall of the 
French Dominion in America. 

The Province of Massachusetts was granted that portion of 
Acadia which now forms part of ]Maine, extending to the Penob- 
scot River and including Mount Desert Island. Sir Francis Ber- 
nard, the last English Governor of Massachusetts before the 
breaking of the revolutionary storm, was instrumental in secur- 
ing this grant to Massachusetts and so, "for distinguished ser- 
vices" the Island of Mount Desert was awarded to him. James 
Truslow Adams writes of the land grants made at that time, 
"The speculators cared little for the bloodshed, riots and feuds 
arising from the overlapping of claims. Massachusetts under- 
took to make grants of doubtful validity for the towns in Maine, 

14 Traditions and Rj&cords 

hoping to overcome the defective titles by enlisting- the influence 
of Governor Bernard in having the grants validated by England, 
by granting him the island of Mount Desert." 

King George III later confirmed the grant. 

In September 1762, Governor Bernard sailed from Fort 
William in Boston Harbor with a considerable retinue, to view 
his new possession and kept a journal that may still be seen. He 
anchored in "the great harbor of Mount Desert" just off the pres- 
ent town of Southwest Harbor, which he laid out with his sur- 
veyors ; he explored the island, noting its fine timber, its water 
power for sawmills, its good harbors, its abundance of wild mea- 
dow grass "high as a man", and of "wild peas" — beach peas per- 
haps — for fodder, and its wealth of fish in the seas. He had 
himself rowed up Somes Sound, a glacial fiord which deeply 
penetrates the island, cutting its mountain range in two. This 
he called "the river", as in that region other inlets are called 
today, following the custom of the early French. And he visited 
Somes, the earliest settler from the Massachusetts shore, then 
building his log cabin at the Sound's head, where Somesville is 
today and walked around to see a beaver's dam nearby at whose 
"artificialness" he wondered. 

At Southwest Harbor he laid his plans for a country place 
for himself and a future town. He had surveys of the island 
made under his oversight as Hutchinson's History of Massa- 
chusetts says he was a clever draughtsman and "a very ingenious 
architect." A few extracts from his journal show that he and 
his surveyors spent a busy week. 

Oct. 2 We anchored about the middle of the Southwest Harbor 
about 5 p.m. 

Oct. 3 After breakfast Went on shore at the head of the bay 
& went into the woods by a compass line for above half 
a mile ; 

Oct. 4 We formed two sets of surveyors: I and Lieut. Miller 
took charge of the one & Mr. Jones, my surveyor had 
the care of the other. We begun at a point at the head 
of the S West Harbour, proceeded in different courses 
& surveyed that whole harbour except some part on the 
south side. 

Mount Desert Island 15 

Oct. 5 It rained all morning &c. We compared our observa- 
tions & protracted the surveys : in the afternoon we sur- 
veyed a Cove in the North River. 

Oct. 6 I and Lt. Miller surveyed the remainder of the S. W. 
harbour & a considerable part of the great harbour. 
Mr. Jones traced and measured the path to the Bass Bay 
creek and found there many haycocks. In the after- 
noon we made some general observations and corrected 
our former surveys. . . . 

Oct. 7 Took an observation of the sun rising. . . 

Oct. 8 We observed sun rising ; but could not take his ampli- 
tude by reason of clouds near the horizon. Mr. Miller 
surveyed the Island on the East side of the river. Mr. 
Jones ran the base line of the intended Township. . . . 
In the afternoon Mr. Jones finished his line, & we gath- 
ered various plants in the Woods. In the evening I 
received several persons on board proposing to be set- 
tlers ; and it was resolved to sail the next morning 
if the wind would permit. 

Oct. 9 At half after 8 we weighed Anchor; stood for the sea 
in a course S S W 

Two years later a more extensive survey was made. The 
plan of the proposed town drawn by the surveyor, Mr. John 
Jones of Dedham, Mass., with instructions in Governor Bernard's 
own handwriting is still existing. I copy as follows : 

"From the great harbor commonly called Mount Desert Har- 
bor there is a passage to a smaller harbor called the Southwest 
Harbor. This is said to be half a mile over, and round this it is 
proposed to lay out a town. It is proposed that all lots shall 
face the bay ; that at the head of the bay facing the entrance, if 
the situation is good, shall be fixed a point, the centre of ten lots, 
from which on each side, the lots are to be measured ; but this is 
not necessary if the ground don't favor it. I would have the lots 
five acres, that is two chains in front to the bay, and twenty-five 
deep, where the ground will allow it which must not be expected 

Between every ten lots into which parcels I would have the 
lots divided, should be a chain left for a road to (be) laid to the 

16 Traditions and Records 

out-lots. Such of these passages as are not likely to be principal 
roads may hereafter be contracted, as I propose to do. I pro- 
pose at present to grant the lots by tens together, leaving an 
interval of ten lots ungranted between every two sets of ten lots 
granted. In one of these sets of reserved ten lots, I propose to 
set out lots for a Meeting house and School ; and one of the 
pleasantest sets (in the centre or otherwise) I shall reserve for a 
settlement of my own. I would therefore, have a choice spot of 
about ten lots set out for myself, from whence the other lots may 
be reckoned in sets of tens, more or less, with a way between 
each lot. * * * * It is my intention to see it (the place) if I can 
before the surveyor has finished the present work. My intention 
is to grant to any one of the sixty first settlers, a home lot of 
five acres and an outlying lot of fifteen ; and also if the quantity 
of salt meadow is answerable to the report of it, I will add to 
each settler five acres of salt meadow to lie in common and to be 
mowed only and not pastured unless it lies high enough to bear 
cattle without hurting the land. But this last I do not promise 
absolutely until I have had the salt meadow surveyed. Mr. 
Jones is desired to engage chainmen and assistants to be under 
his direction." 

The plan of the proposed town is finely drawn and colored 
and the land laid out into lots extended from Southwest Harbor 
to Bass Harbor. 

In a survey of the island made the year previous to the laying 
out of this town, the ruins of an ancient house are referred to as 
one of the landmarks near Southwest Harbor, showing that set- 
tlers had been here of whom history has given no account 

Governor Bernard fully intended to develop his Maine posses- 
sions and among his papers are two interesting documents. One 
dated September 8, 1764, is entitled "Proposals for settling a 
Colony of Germans at a Town in the island of Mountdesert." 
The other is "Proposals for a fishery at Mount Desert, October 
5, 1764, and the paper goes on to state the conditions under 
which such a fishery will be established and managed. 

When Bernard's grant was at last confirmed he had been out 
of the province for a year and seven months and was unable to 
promote further settlement or development of his Mount Desert 

Mount Desert Isi^and 17 

lands. On April 30, 1779, an act was passed to confiscate the 
estates of "certain notorious conspirators against the government 
and Liberties of the inhabitants of the late Province, now State 
of Massachusetts Bay" and Bernard was deprived of his Ameri- 
can property. The confiscation included his stately mansion on 
the shore of Jamaica Pond as well as his far-off island on the 
coast of Maine and thus Mount Desert Island, once the property 
of the Crown of France, once that of England and twice granted 
privately, became again the property of Massachusetts. 

On June 16, 1779, Sir Francis Bernard died at Aylesbury, 
Buckinghamshire. By his will, made September 23, 1778, before 
the confiscation act was passed. Sir Francis left to trustees for 
his son John, the island of Mount Desert, one half of which 
was restored to John Bernard by an act of the General Court, 
June 23, 1785, since he had "produced to this Court ample testi- 
mony of the uniform consistence and propriety of his political 
conduct previous to, during and since the late war, and whereas 
the estate of his father, Sir Francis Bernard, deceased, has been 
confiscated, to wit, the Island of Mt. Desert which was by the 
last will and testament of said deceased made previous to said 
confiscation, devised to said John." 

On November 6, 1786, Marie Theresa de la Mothe Cadillac, 
or Marie de Cadillac as she signed herself, grand daughter of 
the Lord of Mount Desert, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, arrived 
in Boston from France to claim her inheritance. On July 6, 
1787, by act of the General Court, an undivided half of Mount 
Desert was bestowed upon her and her husband, Bartolemy de 
Gregoire, thus recognizing a portion of the old French grant 
made to Cadillac by Louis XIV in 1689. 

Mount Desert was held in common by John Bernard and 
Madame de Gregoire until, during that same year, upon peti- 
tion of Madame de Gregoire for a division, the General Court 
sent surveyors down from Boston and the island was divided; 
the western half, including the town of Southwest Harbor, which 
his father had laid out, being given to Bernard and the eastern 
half, where Cadillac had once lived and where Bar Harbor, 
Northeast and Seal Harbors are today being given to Marie de 
Cadillac and her husband, Bartolemy de Gregoire. They went 

18 Traditions and Records 

to Hull's Cove, on Frenchman's Bay, and lived and died there, 
selling their lands piece by piece to settlers. It is from these 
two grants made by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to the 
grand daughter of Cadillac and to the son of Sir Francis Ber- 
nard, each holding originally by a royal grant, that the titles to 
the land on the island descend. The dividing line from the north 
shore of the island to the head of Somes Sound was called by the 
early settlers "The French line" and is mentioned in many old 

During the first half of the nineteenth century. Mount Desert 
Island remained remote and inaccessible to the travelling public 
except by sailing vessels. But as in all coast towns of that time, 
the men of the island sailed the world over and in many cases 
the wives and children of the captains sailed with them. To 
those at home came letters from ports on the other side of the 
globe and the names of foreign cities were household words. 
The streets of London, Havre, Calcutta and Shanghai were 
familiar to many of the youths of the island and often the cap- 
tain of a ship bound across the Atlantic was not yet out of his 

Little villages grew up along the shores, the great pines were 
cut and shipped away, town government was established, roads 
were built and schools opened and a bridge was built to connect 
the island with the mainland. Then came steamboats and the 
life was changed. 

The Boston and Bangor Steamship Line was established ; a 
local steamer connected Southwest Harbor with it through Egge- 
moggin Reach and Penobscot Bay from Rockland. Some artists 
in their summer wanderings came to Mount Desert and their 
paintings of its wild beauty attracted notice at the city exhibi- 
tions and brought other travellers to the region. Summer life at 
Mount Desert began. 

Note — Much of the foregoing chapter is taken by permission from a 
pamphlet prepared by the National Park Service for Acadia National 
Park and several paragraphs from the writings of Dr. William Otis 
Sawtelle of Haverford, Pa. and Islesford, Maine. 

Mount Desert Iseand 19 


Among the meager records of Mount Desert Island before 
white men settled it is the story of the captivity and sufferings 
of one Thomas Cobbett, son of a minister by the same name at 
Ipswich, Massachusetts. During King Philip's war in 1675 and 
1676 the frontier settlements were harried by the Indians, the 
settlers murdered or carried into captivity and their property 
destroyed. One Walter Gendal had been driven from his house 
and fled to Portsmouth where he induced some venturesome 
young men to accompany him in a "ketch" to see if some of his 
goods could not be rescued. So in October 1676 Gendal with 
James Fryer, son of the merchant who fitted out the sailing craft 
for the purpose and young Cobbett, who had been employed for 
some time by Mr. Fryer and who was a close friend of the son 
James, sailed away with six other young men on this errand. 

While they lay at anchor at Richmond's Island the Indians 
surprised them, wounded young Fryer so severely that he died 
some time after, and the little band was finally forced to sur- 

The Indians divided their prisoners and young Cobbett fell 
into the hands of "one of the ruggedest Fellows" who took him 
by devious ways to "an Island called Mount Desert where his 
Pateroon used to keep his Winter Station and to appoint his 
Hunting Voyages." There he continued nine weeks in a 
wretched condition, being forced to do hard labor and to receive 
but small allowance of food. 

At the end of nine weeks the Indian wanted some powder 
and decided to send his captive to Castine to secure it. There 
the prisoner found an Indian who had been at his father's house 
in Ipswich and who assisted in getting him released. Two Eng- 
lish vessels were in the vicinity and the captain of one of them 
gave the Indians "a fine Coat" in ransom for the young man, 
who was returned to his home. 

The next glimpse of Mount Desert on the pages of history is 
in the early spring of 1688 when Sir Edmund Andros made a 
journey from Boston eastward to inspect the frontiers. After 
working bloody havoc at some of the little coast settlements, he 
caused a census to be made of all the white people living between 

20 Traditions and Records 

the St. Croix and the Penobscot rivers. The document is now 
in possession of the Massachusetts Historical Society and is 
dated May 11, 1688. It reads as follows: 

At Penobscot 
St. Castine and Renne his servant. 

At Agemogin Reach 
Charles St. Robin's Son. La Flower and wife. St. Robin's 

Pettit Pleasure by Mount Desert 
Lowery, wife and child. Hind's wife and four children. — Eng- 

In Winskeage Bay on the eastern side of Mount Desert 
Cadolick and wife. 

At Machias 
Martell who pretends grant for the river from Quebeck. 

Tno. Bretoon, wife and child of Jersey ) , . 

:; . .r , , , ., , z^ ,: , > his servants. 

Latin, wife and three children, English 

At Pessimaquody, near St. Croix 
St. Robin, wife and son with like grant from Quebeck. 
Letrell, Jno. Minn's wife and four children — Lambert and Jolly 
Cure his servants. 

At St. Croix 
Lorzy, and Lena his servant. Grant from Quebeck. 

From this Andros census we must assume that Cadillac was 
actually living on Mount Desert Island in 1688. 

Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac was a native of Languedoc and 
was bom about 1658, a member of a family of the lesser nobility 
of good standing. His letters show that he had a good educa- 
tion and the records show that he had a military career in his 
native land. His wife was Marie Therese Guyon, daughter of 
Denis Guyon and Elizabeth Boucher and the marriage took place 
at Quebec, the young couple going at once to take possession of 
their new grant of land at Mount Desert. 

Mount Desert Island 21 

Cadillac seems to have thought very highly of his estate as 
he styled himself "Lord of Mount Desert" in his writings. His 
place of settlement was at Hull's Cove for the time he resided 
on the Island. Then he went west and later founded the city of 
Detroit where he remained for ten or twelve years leaving in 
1713. He was "Governor of the Province of Louisiana" from 
May 17, 1713, to March 9, 1717. 

In 1786 Bartholomy de Gregoire, the husband of Marie 
Therese de Gregoire, a grand daughter of Cadillac, laid claim to 
the property of Mount Desert by right of his wife as the heir of 
Cadillac. They arrived in Boston, November 6, 1786. They 
came to Hull's Cove where they lived for some years and died 
there in 1810. They are buried in the little cemetery in that 
village. Their three children, Pierre, Nicholas and Marie are 
supposed to have returned to France to occupy an inherited 
estate there. They left no descendants at Mount Desert. 

During the last part of the seventeenth century, Mount Desert 
Island was the rendezvous for French expeditions against New 
England. French records show that in 1692 two French ships, 
Le Pole and L'Envieux, sailed from Quebec commissioned to 
harry the coast settlements and to go first to Mount Desert 
where they would be joined by the allied Indians. So the waters 
of Southwest Harbor must have been disturbed by many war 
vessels in those years. 1696 was the date of another raid and 
Mount Desert was again the rallying place. 

In Massachusetts records we find that Col. Benjamin Church 
of Duxbury was sent to Mount Desert with his troops in pursuit 
of a French ship which was reported to have captured an Eng- 
lish vessel. Col. Church made a careful search along the Maine 
shores but found no trace of French ships and finally, coming 
into Southwest Harbor he found "no Ships there, but a Runlet 
(a small keg) rid off by a line in the Harbour, which he ordered 
to be taken up, and opening of it found a Letter, which gave him 
an account that the Ships were gone home for Boston. Then he 
proceeded and went to Penobscot" and so home. 

In 1722-23 Col. Thomas Westbrook led an expedition against 
the Penobscot Indians and in his letter to the Governor written 
during that time he tells of many Indian wigwams on Mount 

22 Traditions and Re^cords 

Desert and adjacent islands. He writes of finding two French 
letters "in John Deny's house" and of "two small fireplaces at 
the head of Mount Desert bay, which, we judge, had been made 
about three or four days." 

There is a vague story which has been handed down from 
early days of the coming into the harbor of a ship in search of 
fresh water and while the sailors were filling the casks one of 
the officers took a walk into the forest and up one of the moun- 
tains. During his walk he lost his sword and did not discover 
his loss until he had returned and was about to embark. He 
recalled that he had lain down to drink from a brook, and so he 
hurriedly retraced his steps to search for the lost weapon, think- 
ing that it might have slipped from its scabbard at the brook. 

When he came back to the beach (history does not say 
whether or not he found his sword) to his horror he saw the 
ship sailing out of the harbor, leaving him alone on this deso- 
late island. For nine days, it is said, he wandered up and down 
the shores, climbing the hills and the highest trees thereon, 
hoping to discover a sail and was finally rewarded. The story 
was that the sailors had mutinied and got possession of the ship 
during the absence of the officer, but after a few days the officers 
on board freed themselves of their fetters, regained command 
of the ship and at once turned her course back to rescue the 
abandoned one. This story is also told of other places along the 

The next mention of the island is the wreck of the Grand 
Design at Seawall in 1740, which is described in another chapter 
and also the wreck of a ship with a company of soldiers from 
Kennebunk bound to Louisburg. 

The legend that Talleyrand was born at Southwest Harbor 
on Mount Desert island about 1750 gives mention of fishermen's 
homes there at that time and in old letters and documents there 
are references to the ruins of old houses at Southwest Harbor 
before the laying out of the town by Sir Francis Bernard. 

It is well known that fishermen and lumbermen from Massa- 
chusetts frequently brought their families with them and lived 
at Mount Desert and on the adjacent islands through the sum- 
mer, while catching and curing their shipload of fish, or cutting 

Mount Desert Isi^and 23 

the great pine trees. This course was followed for several years 
before permanent settlement was attempted. 


Abstract of title to the land on the western side of Mount 
Desert Island from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to Sir 
John Bernard and abstract of title from June 14, 1785, to Septem- 
ber 4, 1828. 

John Bernard petitioned the House of Representatives of 
Massachusetts on June 14, 1785, for a grant of this land which 
had been owned by his father, Sir Francis Bernard and con- 
fiscated by the United Colonies at the time of the Revolutionary 
War. The General Court passed a resolve as follows : 

Resolved that one-half moiety or half part of the Island of 
Mount Desert be and hereby is granted, and from the passing 
of this resolve shall enure to the said John Bernard, his heirs 
and assigns forever to hold in fee simple, provided always that 
said John shall convey to each person now in possession of land, 
which may be a division of aforesaid Island assigned to said 
John, such quantity thereof and upon such terms as the com- 
mittee appointed by a resolve of the General Court passed 
October 28th, 1783, shall direct in eighteen months from the 
passing of this resolve. 

The grant giving John Bernard one undivided half of the 
Island of Mount Desert was recorded September 15, 1786. 

In April of 1691 King Louis XIV of France, who then 
claimed the shores of New England, granted to Monsieur de la 
Mothe Cadillac the possession of Mount Desert Island. This 
grant was made void when the land became the property of 

On November 6, 1786, Cadillac's grand daughter, Madame 
de Gregoire and her husband Bartolemy with their three chil- 
dren, Pierre, Nicholas and Marie, landed in Boston from France 
to claim their right of inheritance. Of course they had no legal 
right to the property, but it was not considered of much value 
and so the Massachusetts legislature with no investigation, 
passed a resolution giving them the part of Mount Desert that 

24 Traditions and Re^cords 

remained the property of the Commonwealth, So the Gregoires 
and their children were naturalized October 29th, 1787, and came 
to Hull's Cove to take possession of their estate. There they 
built a house and a mill and went to farming. They sold their 
lands to the incoming settlers for small sums. Bartolemy de 
Gregoire died January 18, 1810, and his wife a year later. Their 
children returned to France and no descendants of this couple 
were left at Mount Desert. A few years before they died they 
deeded all their property including their house at Hull's Cove to 
Royal Gurley, who supported them from that time. He moved 
into their house at first and after M. de Gregoire died he moved 
into Capt. Samuel Hull's house but continued to care for Madame 
de Gregoire until her death. 

The grave of the de Gregoires in the cemetery at Hull's Cove 
is marked by a granite boulder from their own lands with their 
name and the dates of their deaths carved on it. 

In June, 1788, the de Gregoires petitioned to have their part 
of the island set off from that of John Bernard. James Sullivan 
answered the petition for Bernard, and Stephen Jones, Nathan 
Jones and Thomas Richardson were appointed a committee to 
make partition. They reported as follows : 

We, Stephen Jones, Nathan Jones and Thomas Richardson, 
in pursuance to the foregoing warrant to us directed, have set off 
to the DeGregoires the moiety of said Island which is bounded 
as follows : Beginning above Mr. James Richardson's at a 
stake and stone at the head of the tide at the northern extremity 
of the Mount Desert Sound and thence running North 38 degrees 
West to a stake and stone upon the edge of the bank of high 
water mark on the Northern side of said Island, thence easterly 
along the high water mark on the Northern side of said Island, 
thence Westerly to the shore to said Mount Desert Sotmd, thence 
northerly by the shore of said Sound to the first mentioned 
bound, and the whole of the part of said Island to the westward 
of said northerly line on the head of said Sound to the northerly 
shore to be the moiety or share of John Bernard, Esq. 

} Stephen Jones 
Nathan Jones 
Thomas Richardson 
Said report was accepted June 14, 1794. 

Mount Dese;rt Isi^and 25 

July 6, 1786, John Bernard mortgaged to Thomas Russell one 
undivided moiety of Mount Desert. No records appear in Han- 
cock County Registry of Deeds of any assignment, foreclosure 
or discharge of said mortgage, but the equity of redemption has 
been foreclosed by long and continued possession. 

In 1803 the following petition was presented to the General 
Court of Massachusetts and the following resolve passed: 

To the Honorable, the Senate and the Honorable House of 
Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in Gen- 
eral Court assembled humbly shows John L. Sullivan, adminis- 
trator de bonus non of the estate of Honorable Thomas Russell, 
Esq., late of Boston, deceased ; that in the lifetime of said 
Russell, John Lane and Thomas Frazier both of London in the 
Kingdom of Great Britain, merchants, being indebted to said 
Russell in large sums of money, and having occasion by pur- 
chase of lands within this state to secure the payments of debts 
due to them in this Country, and by reason of their being aliens 
could not take to themselves deeds directly, had been made to 
the said Russell, which served as security for the debts that they 
owed, which, when paid, would render it equitable that he should 
apply the nature of the proceeds to their use and benefit. 

Resolved : — that the said John L. Sullivan, administrator de 
bonus non of the estate of Thomas Russell, Esq., late of Boston 
deceased, be and is hereby authorized and in power to convey 
the deed or deeds due the executor, of all such real estate within 
this Commonwealth as the said Russell held in trust for John 
Lane and Thomas Frazier and all such as he held as security 
for all such debts due him from said Lane or Frazier, under any 
said person or persons under the said Lane and Frazier or the 
survivor of their assigns shall direct the same to be conveyed. 

Quitclaim deed by John L. Sullivan, administrator of the 
estate of Thomas Russell by a resolve of the Commonwealth of 
Massachusetts, conveys to George William Erving, by deed dated 
September 28th, 1803, recorded February 15th, 1804, in Hancock 
County, Maine, Registry of Deeds, Vol. 13, Page 457, conveys 
one half of Mount Desert Island, being the western half set off to 
John Bernard aforesaid. 

Under the different resolves above noted, among other things 
it provided that the agents of eastern lands should ascertain the 

26 Traditions and Re^cords 

persons who, on the 23rd day of June 1785, were in possession 
of any of the lands on Sir John's moiety as set off by the Com- 
missioners and accepted June 14th, 1794, of the Island of Mount 
Desert, and said Agents on the 16th day of August, A.D, 1808, 
appointed Charles Turner, Stephen Badlam and Salem Towne, 
Jr., Esquires, to lay out to each settler one hundred acres of 
land and place a value on the land as it was in a state of nature. 
This was done; also a survey of all that part of the Island of 
Mount Desert which was John Bernard's moiety. A plan was 
made, the settlers' names and lots were shown on the plan and 
other lots were numbered. This plan is on file in Hancock 
County, Maine, Registry of Deeds. 

George William Erving gave a quitclaim deed of the property 
to Ward Nicholas Boylston, dower not released, consideration 
one dollar etc., dated March 9, 1822, recorded at Boston, signed 
March 15, 1822 and recorded in Hancock County Registry of 
Deeds March 26th, 1822, Book 42, Page 348. 

Ward Nicholas Boylston gave the power of attorney to Salem 
Towne, Jr., to sell the land May 8, 1822. This is recorded in 
said Registry of Deeds Book 42, Page 437. This power of attor- 
ney gave the said Salem Towne, Jr., Esq., "full power to contract 
for the sale of any and all lands not yet sold to George W. 
Erving or his attorney, Thomas Winthrop, Esq., and to convey 
the same on such sums as he may agree upon and to do every- 
thing that may be done for my best interests in the sale of 
lands." At the death of Ward Nicholas Boylston, his widow, 
Alicia Boylston, Nathaniel Curtis and J. Quincy Adams were 
appointed as executors of his last will and testament September 
26, 1828. They also gave Salem Towne, Jr., power of attorney 
to sell the land. 

The early deeds bear the signatures of these trustees and it is 
on the above records that the settlers claim their titles. 

Copies of the map made by Salem Towne, Jr., in 1808, show- 
ing the grants made to settlers are at the Southwest Harbor 
Public Library and also at the Mount Desert Museum at Somes- 

Mount Desert Island 27 

TEMBER, 1808. 

John Chipman, easterly of Clark's Cove 

James Richardson, nearly at head of Somes Sound 

Abraham Somes, northerly side of Somes pond and stream 

Samuel Reed, southerly side of Somes pond and stream 

Daniel Somes, on the point southeast of Reed 

Davis Wasgatt, west of Deming's pond 

Andrew Tarr, northerly of Norwood's Cove 

William Gilley, Norwood's Cove 

Tyler Reed, Norwood's Cove 

George Herman, Norwood's Cove 

Ebenezer Eaton, 270 acres northerly of S. W. Harbor. 

Joseph Legro, southwest side S. W. Harbor 

Peter Dolliver, southwest side S. W. Harbor 

Augustus Rasnell or Rumill, southwest side S. W. Harbor 

Andrew Tucker, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
Samuel Bowden, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
Benjamin Ward, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
Joshua Mayo, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
William Grow, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
John Rute, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
Nicholas Tucker, southwest side S. W. Harbor 
Joshua Norwood, east side Bass Harbor 
Abraham Richardson, east side Bass Harbor 
Thomas Richardson 
Peter Gott 

Thomas Richardson, Jr., Bass Harbor Head 
Daniel Gott, west side Bass Harbor 
Stephen Richardson, west side Bass Harbor 
Benjamin Benson, west side Bass Harbor 
Daniel Merry's Heirs, Lopers Point 
Enoch Wentworth, west side Duck Cove Head 

28 Traditions and Ri:cords 

William Nutter, between Duck Cove and Goose Cove 

Ezra H. Dodge, at Dodge's Point 

William Heath, at Seal Cove 

George Butler, north side of Seal Cove 

James Reed, north side of Seal Cove 

Ephraim Pray, Jr., Pretty Marsh 

Widow Eaton, Pretty Marsh 

Ephraim Pray, Pretty Marsh 

Reuben and George Freeman, Pretty Marsh 


The first settlers of Mount Desert Island were mostly fisher- 
men and lumbermen from the Massachusetts coast towns, partic- 
ularly Gloucester, Eastham and other Cape Cod settlements. On 
fishing expeditions to the Maine coast in summer, they had noted 
the large and safe harbor near the fishing grounds, the growth 
of pine and spruce trees, as well as several grassy marshes neces- 
sary for getting hay as food for cattle while land was being 
cleared and the many tumbling brooks whose waters would turn 
the wheels of grist and saw mills. 

The wooded islands lying south of Mount Desert attracted 
many of the fishermen, while those who were interested in lum- 
bering took up land on the ridges where the great trees stood. 
Those to whom tilling of the soil appealed settled near the 
marshes where hay for their flocks could be obtained. These 
people had no titles to their land until they acquired deeds from 
the de Gregoire or Bernard estates forty years or more after they 
had taken possession. In another chapter is an account of the 
petition prepared by the settlers and sent to Gov. Bernard in 
1768 asking that the inhabitants of the island have the exclusive 
right to the use of the Marshes and complaining that men from 
other settlements often came to cut and carry off the hay. The 
signers of this petition were Abraham Somes, Andrew Tarr, 
Stephen Gott, Benjm. Standwood, James Richardson, Stephen 
Richardson, Daniel Gott, Daniel Gott, Jr., Thomas Richardson 
and Elijah Richardson. 

Mount Desert Island 29 

Abraham Somes, whose settlement at Somesville is mentioned 
elsewhere, was born at Gloucester, Mass., Mar. 17, 1732, the son 
of Abraham and Martha Emerson Somes, who were married at 
Gloucester in 1730. 

Their pioneer ancestors were Morris and Margerie Somes 
who were among the first settlers in Gloucester and ancestors of 
all New England families of the name. 

Abraham Somes married Hannah Herrick, daughter of 
Samuel Herrick of Gloucester and they had thirteen children. 

Mr. Somes settled on Somes Point in 1762 and was among 
the foremost men in the affairs of Mount Desert Island during 
his long life of eighty years. He was one of the first Board of 
Selectmen, he was first lieutenant of the militia and he was 
engaged in several branches of business. His sons inherited his 
excellent qualities and carried on the business as their descend- 
ants have to the present day, 

James Richardson, who came to Mount Desert the same year 
was the son of Stephen and Jane (Montgomery) Richardson 
who came in 1738 from Londonderry, Ireland, to Gloucester. 
Tradition says that Jane Montgomery was the daughter of a 
nobleman and Stephen was a gardener on her father's estate ; 
that the young people eloped and afterward came to America to 
escape the parental wrath. It is claimed that she had the right 
to the title of Lady Jane. When their son James came to Somes- 
ville to make his home he brought with him many plants, seeds 
and shrubs — lilacs, lilies, currant bushes and fruit trees, showing 
a gardener's love for flowers as well as a thrifty lookout for 
fruits. The descendants of these trees and plants still grow 
around the Somesville homes. 

James was a man of some education and was prominent in 
organizing the local government. He served as first clerk of the 
plantation and also town clerk and was clerk of the Congrega- 
tional church. His fine, plain handwriting may be seen in the 
old record books of church and town. He had a mill on his 
land at the head of the Sound and was engaged in farming and 

His brothers, Thomas and Stephen settled at Bass Harbor: 
Thomas at what is now McKinley and Stephen at what is now 

30 Traditions and Re;cords 

called Crockett's Point on the western side of the harbor. They 
also took part in town and church proceedings. It was at 
Stephen's house that the first plantation meeting was held March 
30, 1776, and at that meeting he was elected a member of the 
Committee of Correspondence, Safety and Inspection. Subse- 
quent meetings were also held at his house. He was the repre- 
sentative of the plantation in the General Court and a member 
of the first Board of Selectmen. 

Thomas settled at the east side of Bass Harbor. He was a 
member of the first Committee of Correspondence of the planta- 
tion and was one of the committee chosen to run the boundary 
line between the Bernard and de Gregoire grants known to the 
Mount Desert settlers as "the French line." 

Daniel Gott was connected by marriage with the Richardson 
families and he first settled on the west side of Bass Harbor. In 
1789 he obtained a deed of the two islands lying off Bass Harbor 
head where he made his home and which ever since have been 
known by his name. 

Andrew Tarr was also a Gloucester man. He came first to 
Somesville but soon took up his abode on what is now Fernald 
Point where the Jesuits had attempted to set up their mission 
150 years before. Mr. Tarr built his log house close to the 
shore near where now is the Macomber boat landing. His 
daughter Comfort married Tobias Fernald, a sea-faring man 
from Kittery and they built the house now standing at the end 
of the point. Three more generations of Fernalds owned the 
place by inheritance before it was sold for summer homes. 

Benjamin Standwood at the time of the petition was probably 
living on one of the Cranberry Islands. He later returned to 

The petition sent by the settlers to Gov. Bernard was referred 
to Col. Thomas Goldthwaite, commander of the post at Fort 
Pownal and he turned it over to Col. Nathan Jones of Goulds- 
boro. The letter written by Col. Jones to the Governor about 
the conditions at Mount Desert is preserved in the Bernard 
papers in the Harvard library. 

Many settlers came to Mount Desert within the next few 
years and after the close of the Revolution there was a great 
increase in the population of the island. 

Mount Desert Island 31 

Before 1784 William Gilley had settled at Norwood's Cove 
on land that remained for many years the property of his 
descendants. Tyler Reed and George Norman were settled near 
him. Rev. Ebenezer Eaton owned what is now Clark Point. 
The names of Andrew Tucker, Samuel Bowden, Benjamin Ward, 
Joshua Mayo, William Grew (Grow), Nicholas Tucker, John 
Rute, Joseph Legros (Le Grosvenor) and Peter Dolliver are 
shown on the Salem Towne map as being settled on the south 
side of the harbor now Manset. 

At what is now McKinley were Joshua Norwood, Abraham 
Richardson and Peter Gott. Benjamin Benson had joined Ste- 
phen Richardson and Daniel Gott at what is now Bernard. The 
names of Nutter, Wentworth, Heath, Reed, Dodge and Butler 
are found along the shore to the north from Bass Harbor and at 
Pretty Marsh were Ephraim Pray and Reuben and George 

Hamor, Rodick, Lynam, Cousins, Mayo, Higgins, Young, 
Salsbury, Hadley, Thomas, Thompson are names connected with 
the settlement of the eastern half of Mount Desert on the grants 
from the de Gregoires. On June 1, 1791, there was said to be 
sixty-six families settled on those grants. 

Christopher Bartlett took up his residence on Bartlett's Island 
soon after the coming of Abraham Somes. 

Isaac Bunker and Samuel Stanley were at Cranberry Island 
as was also Benjamin Spurling who settled on Great Cranberry. 
John Robertson took possession of Placentia Island or Robert- 
son's Island as it was called. 

Samuel Hadlock was at Little Cranberry. 

February 16, 1776, the Massachusetts House of Representa- 
tives granted permission to unincorporated townships to hold 
meetings and choose officers "as if they were incorporated into 
a town." One month later a warrant was issued to Mr. Stephen 
Richardson authorizing him to call a meeting of "the inhabitants 
of the Island of Mount Desert and the Cranberry and Placentia 
Islands to meet at his house on Saturday, March 30 at ten of the 
clock before noon." 

Josiah Black was chosen Moderator, James Richardson clerk, 
Ezra Young, Levi Higgins, Stephen Richardson, Isaac Bunker 

32 Traditions and Records 

and Thomas Richardson committee of correspondence, safety 
and inspection "for ye ensueing- year." A committee to look 
after the hay on the marshes was appointed and some "rodes" 
laid out. Then the meeting was adjourned to "the tenth of June 
next." As there were no public funds a subscription was taken 
to purchase a record book. 

At the adjourned meeting on June tenth, Ezra Young was 
appointed Captain of the Militia, Abraham Somes first lieutenant 
and Levi Higgins second lieutenant. Other provisions for safe- 
guarding the Island were made and more arrangements for pre- 
venting the marsh hay from being taken by those from other 

Stephen Richardson attended the General Court on October 
of that same year in the interests of land titles and protection. 
The records show that his journey cost the sum of £4 2s 4d. 

The meetings of the next few years dealt mostly with the 
laying out of roads. In 1777 it was voted to lay out a public 
road from the head of Somes Sound to Thomas Foss's house on 
the south side of South West Harbor and also one to Bass Har- 
bor. It was many years later before these rough trails were 
passable for vehicles. Public landing places were also named 
at Southwest Harbor and at the head of Somes Sound. 

Most of the settlers of Mount Desert were equipped with 
some education, they owned some books and they kept in touch 
with the affairs of the times by their frequent trips to Boston 
and other ports in their vessels to sell their fish and lumber. 

As soon as mail service was established, which was in 1821 
with post office at Somesville, newspapers found their way to the 
homes and letters were more frequent. Previous to this time 
the nearest post office was at Ellsworth. 

The visits of the circuit ministers brought echoes from other 
and older settlements. That the first men of Mount Desert, in 
their occupations of fishing, lumbering and tilling th-eir rocky 
farms — solitary work, most of the time — thought out their prob- 
lems and acted with judgment and independence is shown by the 
records they kept of their proceedings in their public meetings 
of town and church affairs. 

Mount Desert Island 



In 1789 Mount Desert Island was incorporated as a town 
along with Deer Isle, Vinalhaven, Gouldsboro, Trenton, Sulli- 
van, Sedgwick, Frankfort and Bluehill. The territory included 
in the town was Mount Desert Island, Thompson's Island, the 
two Thomas Islands, Bar Island, Sutton's Island, Bear Island, 
Greening's Island, the two Cranberry Islands, Baker's Island, 
Moose Island, Tinker's Island and Bartlett's Island. The incon- 
venience of getting together for town meetings in those days of 
rough roads and long distances were so great that the meetings 
were not largely attended as shown by the number of votes cast. 

Before the voters could act in a town capacity they were 
required to take an oath of allegiance and so, when a meeting 
was called on March 17, 1789, at the house of Abraham Somes, 
the following names were signed to the oath of allegiance to the 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts, abjuring all faith, subjection 
and obedience to the King of Great Britain and every other 
foreign power whatsoever. 

Cornelius Thompson 
James Richardson 
Stephen Richardson 
Andrew Tarr 
Ezra Young 
David Bartlett 
Ezra Leland 
Joshua Norwood 
Elkanah Young 
John Somes 
John Cousins 
Gideon Mayo 
Joseph Hodgdon 
Israel Higgins, Jr. 
Reuben Freeman, Jr. 

Abraham Somes 
Davis Wasgatt 
Levi Higgins 
James Richardson, Jr. 
John Manchester 
Israel Higgins 
Andrew Tucker 
Jesse Higgins 
John Hamor 
Eleazer Higgins 
Benjamin Atherton 
Reuben Noble 
Timothy Smallidge 
Sylvanus Leonard 
Peter Stanley 

For the Year 1790 

EHsha Cousins 
Samuel Milliken 
Joseph Mayo 
William Heath 
Ezra H. Dodge 
John G. Richardson 
David Hamor 

Joseph Hopkins 
Israel Bartlett 
Daniel Somes 
Nathaniel Bennet 
Simeon Hadley 
Jacob Reed 
Peter Gott 


Traditions and Records 

John Rich 
Samuel Reed 
David Rodick 
Philip Langley 
Stephen Salisbury 
David Higgins 
Elias Bartlett 
Samuel Bowden 
Robert Young 
Nicholas Thomas 
John Thomas, Jr. 
Solomon Higgins 
Ephraim Pray 
Christopher Bartlett 
Benjamin Ward 
George Richardson 
Jacob Lurvee (Lurvey) 
Faranton S. F"arrell 
Reuben Freeman 
Thomas Richardson 
Joseph Gott 
Peter Dolliver 
William Roberts 
Daniel Tarr 
James Reed 
Moses Ladd 
John McKinzey 
William Gilley 
Ebenezer Leland 
Thomas Wasgatt 
Ebenezer Salisbury 

Samuel Hadlock 
Henry Know^les 
Nathaniel Marcyes 
Richard Heath 
David Higgins, Jr. 
Joshua Mayo 
Samuel Hull 
John Rich, Jr. 
David Richardson 
George Butler 
David Wasgatt, Jr. 
Ephraim Pray, Jr. 
Aaron Sawyer 
Thomas Manchester 
William Norwood 
Jonathan Hadlock 
Bither Jordan 
George Freeman 
Enoch Richardson 
Welch Moor 
George Harmon 
William Nutter 
Joseph M. Ober 
Tobias Fernald 
Daniel Gott, 2nd. 
Simeon B. Milliken 
Amos Eaton 
Isaac Mayo 
Isaac Ober 
Samuel Milliken 
Timothy SmalHdge, 2nd. 

The first meeting under the new town government was held 
April 6, 1789. Ezra Young was moderator and James Richard- 
son clerk. Lieut, Levi Higgins, Lieut. Abraham Somes, Stephen 
Richardson, Thomas Richardson and Capt. Ezra Young were 
chosen as a Board of Selectmen. Other officers chosen were 
constables, Grand Jurymen, Surveyors of Highways, Surveyors 
of Boards, Deer Reefs, Cullers of Staves, Tything men, Hog 
Reefs and Fence Viewers. Thirty votes were cast for John Han- 
cock, Esq., for Governor of Massachusetts, twenty-three for 
Samuel Adams for Lieut.-Governor, twenty-three for Daniel 
Coney, Esq., for Senator and thirty-five for Mr. John Peters for 
Register of Deeds "for ye Middle District." James Richardson 
was elected Town Treasurer. 

Mount Desert Isi^and 35 

There seems to have been complaints of damage done by 
cattle and sheep running free in the woods and in 1792 it was 
voted to build pounds and elect pound keepers. 

The first mention of the care of town poor was at the meeting 
held April 1, 1793, when it was voted that "the Selectmen carry 
(a widow) to Mr. Benjamin Spurling's who Promises to take 
her one year for her Labor without cost to the Town." 

September 10, 1793, it was voted that "the Selectmen make a 
Proper Demand on Mr. De Grener (de Gregoire?) for the Lands 
belonging by Law to the Town" and that "Capt. Ezra Young 
be the man to go to the General Court Committee to obtain the 
town's land and Roads, etc., if Refused by the Proprietors." 
That there was need of restraining and punishing some mem- 
bers of society is shown by the entry in the records of March 4, 
1794, when it was voted "that Fifteen Pounds including the 
money that is in Thomas Wasgatt's hand be Raised to Purchase 
a Town Stock of a Miniature." It is not known whether or not 
this purchase was ever made. At least there is no record of 
such purchase or of its use. 

On April 6, 1795, one of the articles in the town warrant 
reads, "To see what the Town will do respecting it being divided 
into two towns." 

This was voted to be done and "a line drawn by the Select- 
men where the town Shall be Divided and Layed before the 
town at next town meeting in May." At the May meeting it was 
recorded that "the Report of the Selectmen for a line to Divide 
the town Excepted." 

Accordingly the necessary steps were taken and on February 
22, 1796, the legislature of Massachusetts passed an act dividing 
the town of Mount Desert into two towns and incorporating the 
northern part of the island into the town of Eden. The act was 
approved by Gov. Samuel Adams on the following day, and on 
Monday the fourth day of April, 1796, the new town held its first 
town meeting.* 

• In 1838 a third division of the town of Mount Desert set off Bart- 
lett's, Hardwood and Robinson's or Tinker's Islands and incorporated 
them into a town by the name of Seaville. This town functioned for 
twenty-one years and then the act was repealed and Bartlett's Island 
returned to Mount Desert while the others were annexed to Tremont. 

36 Traditions and Re^cords 

Since that time there have been other divisions as follows : 

Town of Cranberry Isles, incorporated March 16, 1830. 

Town of Mansel, later called Tremont, incorporated June 3, 

Town of Southwest Harbor, incorporated February 21, 1905. 

There was but little money in circulation and much of the 
business in the early days was by exchange or barter. Often the 
town meeting's voted "to do nothing to the roads." As travel 
increased and better roads were demanded, men often "worked 
out their taxes" on the highways. 

For some years the ministers were paid by the town with 
money raised by taxation. The town records of April 1, 1793, 
say that it was "voted that the town send to the Westward for a 
minister on Probation and that Mr. Thomas Richardson, Capt. 
Davis Wasgatt and Capt. Ezra Young be a Committee for that 
Purpose and that they wright to the Reverend Samuel Maclin- 
tock of Greenland in New Hampshire to Provid us a Candidate 
to Preach the Gospel to us and we will make said Candidate good 
for his time and expense." 

The first money raised for schools was the sum of eighteen 
pounds at the meeting of June 15, 1790, and this sum was for the 
entire island. In 1792-3 the sum of fifty pounds was raised for 
education "to be paid in the produce of the country at the current 
market price." 


Mount Desert was settled largely by fishermen and lumber- 
men; people with but small means, eager to carve homes for 
themselves out of the wilderness. Their manner of life, there- 
fore, was simple and like other new settlements, most primitive. 

The usual custom was for the man to come to Mount Desert 
and build a log house, then return to Massachusetts for his 
family, either in the autumn or the following spring. Most of 
the early settlers of our island came from Gloucester, Salem 
and places on Cape Cod. Eastham contributed a goodly number 
of the settlers who came first to Hull's Cove and later spread 
out to the other settlements. 

Mount Desert Isuind 37 

Some of the settlers brought cherished heirlooms in the way 
of furniture, but most of the homes were very simply furnished. 
Heat and cooking facilities were provided by the wide fireplaces 
and there was plenty of wood for fuel. Most families had their 
"fire kettle" to bring coals from a neighbor's hearth in case 
their own fire went out. In many homes, the fire on the hearth, 
carefully covered at night, was kept alive for years and to fre- 
quently be obliged to "borrow fire" was held to be a sign of 
shiftlessness on the part of the householder. 

The brick ovens were heated at least once a week for the 
week's baking and this kept the whole house warm and dry. 
The immense chimneys contained several flues for fireplaces, 
when heated thoroughly, warmed the whole house. The first 
houses were of necessity small and were replaced by better ones 
in following years. Stoves came into use here in the early 1850's. 
The Gilley family had the first one, the Femalds soon purchased 
one and the Carroll family was the third to try the new inven- 
tion. These stoves were small, square, box-like affairs and the 
old people who were accustomed to the fireplaces, scoffed at 
them and declared that the food cooked therein was not health- 
ful or tasty. The cooking utensils were of heavy iron, and 
pewter dishes and spoons were in use in many homes. 

A spoon mold was a necessity in a family as it was frequently 
necessary to melt and remold the spoons. Bullet molds were 
also a part of the outfit of each hunting kit, for the leaden bullets 
used in the old time muzzle-holding guns had to be fashioned in 
the home. 

Until the coming to the community of Isaac Herrick, who 
was a wheelwright, the wheels of the rude carts used by the 
settlers, were but circular sections sawed from a great log with 
a hole bored in the center. 

When frame houses were built they were framed on the 
ground and then the neighbors were bidden to a "raising" to 
hoist the timbers into position. A supper followed and often a 
dance for the young folks. The spinning wheel and loom were 
an important part of the house furnishings for the clothing of 
the family must be made in the home. The housewives were 
expert in the making of dyes from bark or from vegetables and 

38 Traditions and Ri^cords 

they wove the same intricate patterns of coverlets and borders 
that were woven in all the New England settlements. They had 
considerable skill too, in medicinal herbs and each family had its 
plot of herbs or "simples" as well as knowledge of the medicinal 
qualities of many of the wild plants. For instance, pennyroyal 
tea was a cure for headache, spearmint for a disordered stomach, 
bruised leaves of plantain (white man's foot the Indians called it 
as it was found only where the invading race had settled) was 
an antidote for poisonous insect stings, tansy, motherwort, mug- 
wort all had their curative qualities for different maladies, catnip 
tea was given to children for many disorders, a tea was made 
from marigold blossoms to be given to infants who had sore 
mouth, peppermint leaves were steeped into tea for colic or 
cramps, a tea made from "yellow root" found in knolls in the 
pasture lands v/as a remedy in case of measles, sage, flagroot, 
sassafras root or sarsaparilla, birch twigs and bark and many 
other roots and herbs were gathered every summer and stored 
for possible need. A few women there were in every community 
who had more than average knowledge of nursing and medicine 
and as there was no doctor at Mount Desert until 1799 when Dr. 
Kittredge settled at Somesville, the services of these women were 
often called for. 

In the records of an early Massachusetts town it is written 
that when there was a sudden need of heat at the patient's feet, 
a hen was brought in and thrust into the foot of the bed. Per- 
haps our ancestors may have used the same expedient. 

The road to Ellsworth by way of the eastern side of Echo 
Lake was built in 1838-9. Previous to this there was a rough 
cart road leading down over Beech Hill and along the crest of 
Freeman's Hill. There were no carriages on the island and but 
few horses ; oxen being used as beasts of burden. 

Most of the families kept some sheep and a cow or two. 

Jacob Lurvey came to Mount Desert in 1790 and among his 
furniture were a few heirloom pieces including a grandfather 
clock. He also had a large silver watch and when a house was 
built in the early days he was often sent for to make a "sun 
mark" on the window sill at high noon which was the only time 
piece the family would have. 

Mount Desert Island 39 

A few books were included in the possessions of almost every 
family in the community and the early settlers had an apprecia- 
tion of educational advantages and soon arranged for school 
privileges for their children. 

The travelling preachers visited the homes and quizzed the 
children as to their knowledge of the catechism. 

The first school teachers "boarded round", remaining in 
each home according to the number of children in the school. 
Therefore it was necessary for the teacher to stay longest in the 
home that was most crowded and probably in the most strait- 
ened circumstances. 

Everybody was hospitable and the stranger within the gates 
was sure of invitations to sit at the table and to spend the night. 
Almost every family had a few cherished silver spoons or china 
dishes or pieces of linen to be used on state occasions. Many of 
the women too, had a carefully guarded silken gown or wrap to 
be worn only at important ceremonies. 

Quiltings, sewing bees and tea parties were the chief diver- 
sions for the women, chopping matches (when the huge pile of 
wood needed for the year was chopped into suitable lengths or 
split), "raisings" and the suppers which followed were occasions 
when the whole neighborhood joined in a general good time. 

No one was allowed to suffer among the early settlers. A 
sick man's neighbors saw that his fuel was prepared, all gave 
freely of time and strength to replace a house that was burned 
and to care for the widowed and the fatherless. If a mother 
died leaving young children, friends took them into their own 
homes and many a kind woman brought up several children 
with her own large family. 

Each home supplied its own necessities. Soap was made 
every spring from wood ashes and the grease that had been care- 
fully saved during the year. In summer berries were preserved 
or dried, fish was dried or salted, vegetables stored in autumn 
in the cellars or in deep pits out of doors. Game was abundant ; 
venison, bear steaks, partridge, sea birds, could all be had with 
the aid of the musket. Lobsters could be picked up along the 
shores but were not much esteemed as food. Clams were abun- 
dant and many varieties of fish, both from the sea and the lakes. 

40 Traditions and Records 

Wild berries grew thickly on the hills and pastures. Each 
family raised some grain for bread and it was ground in the 
Holmes mill at the Mill Dam or at the Somes mill in Somesville. 
There was a ready sale for fish and lumber in Boston and the 
vessels that sailed out loaded with these commodities brought 
back luxuries as well as necessaries. Almost every house had 
a few flowers planted around the door from seeds or roots 
brought from the old home in Massachusetts and descendants of 
those cherished plants grow in many a garden today. 

Few of the women who came to Mount Desert with the first 
settlers ever saw their old homes and friends again. The jour- 
ney to Massachusetts must be made by sailing vessel in cramped 
quarters and but few ever attempted it though only three hun- 
dred miles separated them from their early associations. 

Many of the common expressions of the early settlers were of 
old English origin. "Tote" was used in the sense of carry, chil- 
dren were told to "con their lessons", a man of good judgment 
was spoken of as "a knowledgeable man", "to tole one away" 
was to allure, clever was used in the sense of good natured and 
still is used so in many cases, a sick person was spoken of as 
"enjoying poor health", an awkward one as "gawming", a medi- 
ocre success as "doing middling well." Those who were noisy 
in their fun were said to "get into a gale" and if a proposition 
pleased, the answer was "I would admire to do so." They spoke 
of "hunting high and low" for a lost object, of being "in high 
glee" when something was especially pleasing, of "making a 
towse about it" and when one entered a conversation he was said 
to have "chimed in." 

Of the fog it was hoped that it might "scale off" or that the 
moon might "scoff off" the threatening storm. The cloudy sky 
was spoken of as "looking smurry or lowry." 

Seafaring expressions were woven through and through the 
speech of Mount Desert people as all along the coast, not only 
of Maine but of all seaboard states and added much to the pic- 
turesqueness of conversation. 

To call to a passerby was to "hail him", to make ready for a 
journey was "to man out and go" as soon as one could "get 
squared away", to avoid a person was to "give him a wide berth" 

Mount Desert Isi^and 41 

or to "steer clear of him", to call was to "sing out", to be sick or 
faint was to "keel over", to face a sudden and unexpected diffi- 
culty was to "be brought up with a round turn." 

An old seaman in describing the indisposition of his wife said 
that "she had a pain amidships." Another old sea captain, 
bending over the casket of a shipmate with whom he had made 
many voyages murmured "Ah captain, I never thought you'd 
drop anchor afore I did." 

A man of the sea toiling through a severe storm of snow and 
wind said he "could just stud and brace" ; to work amid difficul- 
ties was to endure "pulling and hauling", to observe a man 
closely was to "get his marks and deeps", to change one's plans 
was to "sheer off", and one who had passed a restless night 
spoke of himself as having "pitched and tossed all night." 

To make a thorough search was to look "fore and aft", if 
there were no obstacles in the way it was said that "the coast 
was clear", and what could be more expressive in describing a 
sudden fall than to say "he was knocked sprawling." 

There were many common household sayings that were cur- 
rent in Elizabethan England, such as if a toad was killed the 
cow would give bloody milk, if basting threads were left in a 
garment it meant that it was not paid for, if two persons should 
wipe their hands on the same towel at the same time they were 
sure to quarrel soon, if one dreams of the dead they will hear 
from the living, and if Saturday night's dream is told on Sunday 
morning it is sure to come to pass before the week is over. 

What you dream when sleeping in a house for the first time 
will surely come true ; if you sing before breakfast you will weep 
before supper ; to drop a dish cloth means unexpected company ; 
a baby less than a year old must not look in a mirror ; peacock 
feathers bring bad luck to a house ; you must not kill a spider 
and if one of these insects is found on your clothing you will 
have new garments before long ; if you put a garment on wrong 
side out you must wear it that way or your luck will be bad ; an 
umbrella must not be opened in the house as that would mean 
a death ; a piece of work must not be started on Friday or it will 
be a long job. 

The generation who used these expressions has passed, the 

42 Traditions and Records 

g-eneration who heard them is passing and the youth of today 
would be puzzled at such sayings. 

Sixty years ago rag pedlers frequently came around buying 
old rags and paper and paying for them with bright tin dishes. 
Every housewife carefully saved all such things and delighted 
in the new tin pie plates and dippers for the household. John 
Green drove a red cart and was hailed with delight by the chil- 
dren for his kindly ways and for the candy which he carried 
tucked away on the shelves behind the locked doors of his 

John J. Carr was another travelling merchant who carried 
cloth of better quality than could be found in the local stores 
and another pedler by the name of Breed came twice each year 
to sell shoes of better kind and style than the local merchants 
found profitable to carry. 

Horace Brown with his cart and strong horse always had 
candy for the children and a stock of enticing wares. Deacon 
Benjamin Dodge with his small store of notions on a sled was 
always warmly welcomed and must have found his business 
successful as he carried it on for many years. 

Agents for books came often and many a parlor table had 
several volumes of literature of many kinds, most of them bound 
in a showy manner and many of them of small value. Agents 
for newspapers and magazines swarmed in all country communi- 
ties. Frequently the subscribers were charmed by the bright 
colored chromos that were given with each subscription and 
many a parlor wall was ornamented with these pictures. Agents 
for enlarging portraits came in numbers and almost every home 
had one or more of these enlargements as a part of the furnish- 
ings of the best room. 

Polished shells from the Chinca Islands, conch shells from 
the West Indies, bottles of tiny pearl-like shells from many 
tropical shores were on the mantels of the homes of sea-going 
men, with various curios brought from foreign lands. 


The census of all the white people living between the Penob- 
scot and St. Croix rivers, which Sir Edmund Andros caused to 
be made in 1688 is preserved among the Hutchinson papers in 

Mount Desert Island 43 

possession of the Massachusetts Historical Society. The paper 
is dated May 11, 1688, and in the list of the scanty population at 
Penobscot, at Agemogin Reach, at Petit Pleasure by Mount 
Desert, at Machias and at Pessimaquody near St. Croix as well 
as at St. Croix are the names of Cadolick and wife in Winskeage 
Bay, on the eastern side of Mount Desert. 

There is on record at Quebec a document granting Mount 
Desert, the neighboring islands and a considerable tract of the 
nearby mainland to the Sieur de la Mothe Cadillac said to be 
then living at "La Cadie". This document was confirmed by 
Louis XIV on May 25, 1689. So, from the Andros census, it 
would seem that Cadillac was living on this grant in 1688, near 
Bar Harbor, probably at Hull's Cove. 

The first census taken by the United States government was 
in 1790 and showed 786 residents on Mount Desert Island and the 
census of 1820 when Maine was set oflf from Massachusetts gives 
the number of people as 1349. The 1930 census records 8350 
permanent residents. 


On October 17, 1792, a little company of seven men and eight 
women gathered at some house in Southwest Harbor, adopted 
and signed a covenant and formed themselves into the Congre- 
gational Church of Mount Desert. The whole island was at that 
time included in the jurisdiction of the church. The original 
record books are in existence. The handwriting is clear and 
plain, being that of James Richardson who was clerk of the 
church until his death in 1807. The heading reads: "Record 
of the Church of Christ in the town of Mount Desert when 
geathered and by what order. Mount Desert the seventeenth of 
October one thousand seven hundred and ninety two. 

the Gethering and forming of a Church in the Town of 
Mount Desert and the Proceedings thereof began on October 
the 17th Day in the year of our Lord 1792. 

having received instruction from the Reverend Samuel 
McClintock with a covenant, a number of us appointed the 17th 
day of October in the year of our Lord 1792 for a Day of fast- 
ings and Prayer for the Purpose of forming ourselves into a 
Church and Profess to take Christ for our head. 

Accordingly being assembled and meet together we signed 
the following covenant." 

Then follows the covenant in dignified and stately language 
signed by James Richardson, Thomas Richardson, Davis Was- 
gatt, Nathaniel Gott, Ezra H. Dodge, Paul D. Sargent, Daniel 
Richardson, Rachel Richardson, Rachel Wasgatt, Mary Dodge, 
Hannah Gott, Elizabeth Gott, Margaret Richardson, Ruth Nor- 
wood, Nancy Atherton. 

It had been thirty years since Abraham Somes, the first set- 
tler on Mount Desert Island, had built his cabin at Somesville 
and three years since the organization of the town in 1789. This 
was the first religious organization of any kind on the island of 
Mount Desert. 

46 Traditions and Records 

Circuit preachers of the Congregational and Baptist faiths 
had visited the island from time to time, holding services in the 
homes, preaching the funeral sermons of those who had died 
since the last visit of a minister to this isolated spot, baptizing 
the children and performing the marriage service for the young 
folks who awaited his coming. These ministers were sent by 
the Massachusetts Missionary Society and their recompense for 
their services was very small indeed. Among the names of those 
early preachers are Rev. Daniel Little of Kennebunk, Rev. 
Daniel Merrill of Sedgwick, Rev. Samuel McClintock, Rev. Peter 
Powers, Rev. Jonathan Fisher of Bluehill, Rev. Abijah Wines 
and others. It is claimed that the first sermon ever preached on 
the island was in 1773 by Rev. Oliver Noble and the first mar- 
riage ceremony was that of Davis Wasgatt and Rachel Richard- 
son August 9, 1774, by Rev. Daniel Little of Kennebunk.* 

After the organization of the church there is no record for 
two years and then in August, 1794, it is written that "Rev. 
Samuel Eaton of Harpswell visited us held the Lord's Supper 
admitted Mary Manchester and declared us a church," 

The first act of the church on its own responsibility was the 
admission of Samuel Hadlock and Jacob Lurvey as members 
on Nov. 16, 1794. 

Rev. Daniel Merrill of Sedgwick officiated at this ceremony. 
On this date a new covenant was drawn and adopted with 
eighteen articles of faith. 

About 1800 it was voted to build two meeting houses ; one at 
Pretty Marsh and one at Southwest Harbor. The latter was 
situated on the old Bass Harbor road below the present church. 
It was never quite completed and when the location of the road 
was changed, the building was taken down and the lumber went 
into the building of the present church which was completed 
about 1828, having been several years in process of construction. 

The church in this new land where money was very scarce 
indeed, could not afford to employ a pastor and yet they were 

• On April 1, 1793, It was voted in the town meeting- that the town 
"send to the Westward for a minister on Probation and that Mr. Thomas 
Richardson, Capt. Davis Wasgatt and Capt. Ezra Young- be a Committee 
for that Purpose and that they Wright to the Reverend Samuel MacClin- 
tock of Greenland in New Hampshire to Provid us a Candidate to Preach 
the Gospel to us and we will make said Candidate good for his time 
and expense." 

Southwest Harbor 47 

eager for the services of a minister in their midst. Ebenezer 
Eaton of Sedgwick was a man of natural ability, very religious 
and had conducted "meetings." He came to Southwest Harbor 
and preached several times and was pleasing to the people. He 
keenly felt his lack of education and refused ordination because 
of it, but a letter written by Rev. Peter Powers in 1799 says "our 
Association has licensed dear Mr. Eaton to preach." 

In 1798 with the assistance of Rev. Powers, thirty-two per- 
sons were added to the church, in 1799 ten more joined and in 
1800 eighteen persons became members. 

With this increase in strength it was felt that a full time 
minister should be induced to settle in the place and take charge 
of religious affairs. Mr. Eaton seems to have been the man 
whose presence was desired and a call was extended to him in 
the spring of 1801. Mr. Eaton had been serving as "stated 
supply" since 1793 according to Duren's "Ministers and Churches 
of Maine." 

In October of 1801 the town voted to "give Mr. Eaton $250 
per year and four Sabbaths in the year for himself", and also 
"that the town assist Mr. Eaton in moving his family." Just 
when the moving took place we do not know, but at the March 
town meeting in 1803 it was voted "that the town allow John 
Manchester ten dollars for moving Mr. Eaton from SedgAvick to 
Mount Desert." 

Mr. Eaton bought 270 acres of land which included all of 
Clark Point and extended north along the shores of the Mill 
Pond, built his house on the lot now owned by Harvard Beal 
(1937) and allowed his parishioners to bury their dead on the 
sunny hillside on his land, first without regard to plan, but later 
arranged with some design and being the first public burial place 
on Mount Desert Island. 

Any account of the Congregational church of Mount Desert 
would not be complete without a full tribute paid to the memory 
of Ebenezer Eaton, the beloved minister who served the church, 
the community and the whole Island for nearly half a century. 
That he was not as severe toward the erring ones as most minis- 
ters of that day is inferred from a record in the time-stained 
pages of the first clerk's book where is noted that on July 5, 

48 Traditions and Records 

1803, the church, after a day of fasting and prayer, felt called 
upon to censure Brother Eaton for "not having dealt with (a 
certain member of the church) so seasonably as he ought." But 
it generously admits that the fault was not intentional and the 
church takes upon itself equal responsibility. Perhaps this len- 
iency brought him more of the affection of his people and 
accounted for his long pastorate among them. 

Mr. Eaton was the son of Theophilus and Abigail Elaton of 
Deer Isle. They came in 1768 from Haverhill, Mass., where 
Theophilus was born in 1720. He first moved to Sandown, 
N. H., then to Brunswick and from there to Deer Isle. Mrs. 
Eaton, mother of Ebenezer, died in 1824, aged 102 years, 8 
months, at the home of her son, James Eaton, in Prospect, 

Ebenezer's educational advantages in youth were very limited 
but he was a close student and his principal books, according to 
a letter written by his grandson, Herrick Eaton, were the Bible 
and Henry's Commentary. His days when in his home were 
spent in study and he preached entirely without notes. He 
always rode horseback. He began preaching when 26 years of 

In 1823 he yielded to the wishes of his people and consented 
to be ordained. After this the records refer to him as Reverend 
or Father Eaton. 

After the death of James Richardson, Davis Wasgatt was 
appointed clerk and not long after. Dr. Kendall Kittredge was 
appointed to the office. During his absences Mr. Eaton kept the 
records as did subsequent ministers, for Dr. Kittredge was clerk 
for forty-one years. Among the old papers belonging to the 
church is a bill from Dr. Kittredge for "Bread and Wine for the 
Table"; from 1817 to 1832; two quarts of wine at 3 s. 6 d. for 
each communion. The bill is not receipted so we do not know 
whether the good doctor ever received his just dues or not. 

In 1816 there was a great religious awakening all over Mount 
Desert and thirty-three members were added. This year the 
Baptist church was organized at Seal Cove and some, who were 
inclined toward that form of faith, changed their membership to 
the new church. 

Southwest Harbor 49 

But Rev. Lemuel Norton, the first minister of the Baptist 
church, speaks of the church at Southwest Harbor as being "a 
large and wealthy one." 

In these days the church acted as a court and was often called 
upon to settle difficulties between neighbors and sometimes be- 
tween members of the same household. Once it was obliged to 
act between the minister and some of his parishioners. The 
cases of church discipline were many ; some for telling a lie, for 
disorderly walking, for strong language, for excess of anger, for 
being overcome by strong drink, for swearing, for breach of the 
seventh commandment, etc. 

Some were dealt with severely, some censured publicly, some 
excommunicated and others "set aside for a time." Some fell 
from grace many times and were many times forgiven. 

When a complaint was brought before the church a com- 
mittee was appointed after deliberation and prayer to discuss the 
matter with the delinquent ones and they were often able to 
settle the dispute. But sometimes the erring one refused to show 
repentance and after more than one attempt "at conciliation" the 
attention of the church was called to the advice in Corinthians I, 
fifth chapter, 13th verse, which is "Put away from among your- 
selves that wicked person", and action was taken accordingly. 

When Elder Eaton was sent to talk with the accused ones he 
was frequently able to report that "all was settled in love and 

In some cases the sinning one was obliged to rise in church 
and "publicly confess the sin." 

Meetings were held at Pretty Marsh, at Bass Harbor, Beech 
Hill and Between the Hills (as Somesville was then called) as 
well as at Norwood's Cove and Southwest Harbor. 

For many years Southwest Harbor meant what is now called 
Manset ; where is now the village was South Norwood's Cove 
and the upper part of the village was styled North Norwood's 
Cove. Where the name Norwood became connected with the 
Cove cannot now be ascertained. 

In 1799 one of the signers of the original covenant who had 
for "above twenty years" been a member of the church, became 
convinced that infant baptism was not right and that "baptism 

50 Traditions and Re^cords 

by Plunging" was the only satisfactory manner of administering 
that rite. He accordingly asked that he be baptized again. 

Although the Congregational church is willing to baptize in 
any of the prescribed ways, it was felt that to perform this office 
the second time for a member would be to confess that the infant 
baptism which he had received was not satisfactory and so his 
plea was refused. He made the request several times and once 
he declared that as he had no memory of the rite, he was not 
sure that he had ever been baptized at all. Thereupon his par- 
ents, who were present assured him firmly that baptism had been 
performed in his infancy and gave the day and date of the cere- 
mony. The records say that they "told who Baptized him and 
how old he was and where they dwelt." He was asked why he 
did not join the Baptist church and he replied that "he could not 
put up with the Close Communion." 

After being convinced that all his pleas were in vain he took 
matters into his own hands, and "without any further knowledge 
of or proceedings with the Church, on the 27th of September, 
1801, he went to Eden and was Baptized by Plunging." 

The church was in a dilemma when he returned, confessed 
what he had done and asked what they would do about it. As 
they were at a loss as to their procedure, it was voted to wait 
until Conference assembled to "see what they would do with 
him." But when the next Sabbath came and the sacrament was 
administered and he was set aside and not allowed to partake, 
he waited until the ceremony was over and the blessing given 
and then "he arose and reflected on the church in general and 
on particular persons for his being set by that Day and made 
a great noise about it." 

When Conference was assembled it was decided that if he 
would say that if he had young children he would have them 
baptized they would accept him into full communion, but as one 
of another church. "Upon this he Declared that if he was to 
have ninety and nine children more he would not have one of 
them baptized and declared that he considered himself excom- 
municated. Since that time" says the record, "he has said that 
he looked on himself like the blind man that was turned out of 
the Synagogue." 

South WE^ST Harbor 51 

Later he was taken into the church again and the vote was 
"that the church highly disapprove of said (member)'s conduct 
in going and being baptized by Plunging, but hoping it was only 
a earrer in Judgement, thought proper to vote him in again only 
as a Privet brother." 

When the Baptist church was formed at Seal Cove in 1816 
this man was one of the charter members and was an official of 
the church during his life. 

Another good citizen and pillar of the church was about to 
set out in his boat from his home at Norwood's Cove one Sunday 
morning for the church at Manset, when he saw Widow Petten- 
gil, who lived across the Sound at Sandy Point, trying vainly to 
drive her cow out of her garden. The good neighbor rowed 
across the Sound, drove the refractory animal to her pasture and 
spent the rest of the morning mending the fence. To his aston- 
ishment and indignation, he was called to account the following 
Sunday on a charge of breaking the Sabbath and because he 
stoutly maintained that he would do the same again as it was no 
wrong, he was excluded from membership. Some time later he 
was taken back into the fold. (Perhaps the good common sense 
of the committee came to their rescue.) 

In 1831 as Elder Eaton was advanced in years and the task 
of riding over his wide territory was taxing his strength it was 
decided to obtain an assistant for him and the Rev. George 
Brown came to fill that office. 

Soon difficulties arose and the upheaval among the people be- 
came so great that a company of ministers was called to hear 
both sides of the question and decide what was to be done. The 
language of their report as recorded on the yellowed pages of 
the ancient record book is dignified and eloquent. The Rev. Mr. 
Brown was mentioned as "a Christian and a Christian minister" 
but he was advised that his usefulness in this parish was im- 
paired and that he had better seek employment elsewhere. The 
people were advised to "seek and obtain some other gentleman of 
approved piety and talents" to labor among them and urged that 
"the Brethren abstain entirely from bringing up past difficulties 
touching the ministry among them" and that they "carefully, 
prayerfully cultivate Christian harmony, love and goodwill 

52 Traditions and Records 

among each other." The report is signed by John Sawyer, Mig- 
hill Blood and Stephen Thurston. 

In the early days a man and his wife applied for membership 
and it was voted "to accept the sister, but to take the brother 
under consideration and let him stand awhile." Later his name 
appears among those of the members. 

Elder Eaton now wished to resign his pastorate. His wife 
had died and was buried in the little burying ground on their 
land with a son and a daughter, and the health of the old man 
was failing. So a call was issued on May 24, 1834, to Rev. 
Micah W. Strickland to become pastor of the church. The 
church agreed to pay him the sum of $300 in equal quarterly 
installments for the first three years of his term, and for the 
fourth and fifth years he was to receive the sum of $400. This 
was with the understanding that the Maine Missionary Society 
should pay him the sum of $100 annually for five years. "It is 
understood", so says the record book, "that Mr. Strickland is to 
have four Sabbaths yearly for travelling and visiting if he 
wishes to." 

Rev. Strickland's ordination took place at Somesville at the 
home of Mr. John Somes and was later adjourned to the school- 
house that all the people might have a chance to hear the relig- 
ious examination of their pastor, as to his Christian experience. 
Ministers present at this ceremony were Rev. Calvin Cary, the 
well-loved minister of the Baptist church at Seal Cove who 
served them many years, Rev. Stephen Thurston of Searsport, 
Rev. Peter Nourse of Ellsworth, Rev. Wooster Parker. 

Rev. Eaton soon after went to Sedgwick to visit his daughter, 
Mrs. Currier, and died while there in 1841 at the age of eighty- 
seven. The older people of the church hoped that his body 
might be brought back to the town where he laboured so many 
years to rest on his own land by the side of his wife, but the 
years passed and it was not done. 

Mr. Strickland took hold of the church affairs with a strong 
and capable hand. He regulated the finances, made a complete 
list of the 177 members and arranged what each should pay; 
brought the records up to date and added much valuable data as 
to marriages, births and deaths. He looked minutely after the 

Southwest Harbor 53 

morals of his flock and many were brought to the bar of justice 
for their errors. He imposed severe penalties upon them, be- 
lieving that the example of punishment was necessary to pre- 
serve the standing of the church. He was a thoroughly upright 
man and one who took his calling seriously, but one wonders if 
the people did not sometimes look back with affection to the days 
of the more gentle Father Eaton. 

Mr. Strickland carried his vigor into his daily life also. He 
built the house now owned by Mr. and Mrs. O. W. Cousins, doing 
most of the work with his own hands. He quarried the stone 
for the foundation, rafted it down the Sound and put it in place. 
His wife was a daughter of Dr. Kendall Kittredge and he had a 
large family of children. 

In 1841 the church found it impossible to keep up the pay- 
ments to their minister and so, at his request, allowed him to 
leave the pastorate. The fees for weddings did not appreciably 
swell the pastor's purse if they were all like one that is known 
where the bridegroom presented the officiating clergyman with 
seventy-five cents and a quarter of veal for his services. 

Mr. Strickland went to Amherst and Aurora to preach and 
Rev. Charles M. Brown came to minister to the Southwest Har- 
bor church. 

Rev. Joseph Brown had come to Deer Isle in 1804 as pastor 
of the Congregational church there. He was born in England in 
1760 and was educated by Lady Huntingdon. He died at Deer 
Isle. He was an educated and able man and Rev. Charles M. 
Brown was one of his sons. 

Rev. Charles had had a partial course at Harvard and was a 
graduate of the Bangor Theological Seminary. He had the 
affection and esteem of his people whom he served successfully 
for nine years. Then his mind became confused with the pass- 
ing years and he resigned his pastorate and bought the place 
now owned by Mrs. C. E. Cook where he spent the remainder 
of his days. 

Many stories were told of "Uncle Charlie" as he was affec- 
tionately called. He complained to a parishioner that his mem- 
ory was failing and he sometimes lost the thread of his sermon. 
"But", he said, "I usually find that if I say Nevertheless three 
times and pound the pulpit I can recall what I was going to say." 

54 Traditions and Records 

He was preaching at Somesville one afternoon and in his zeal 
he forgot the passage of time. The day waned and the shadows 
gathered, but still the sermon went on. At last one good brother 
who had many cattle to look after, rose to creep quietly out. 
As he reached the door "Uncle Charlie" turned and said, "I came 
to save sinners but I see that I have the power to cast out 

He was teaching and also preaching at Somesville when some 
of the young men in his classes, seeing that his garments were 
getting threadbare, got up a dance and used the money to buy 
"Uncle Charlie" a new suit. When the clothes were presented, 
Mr. Brown, who knew how the money had been raised, said, 
"Well the Lord brought them even if the Devil sent them, so 
I guess I'll take them." 

After Mr. Brown resigned in 1850, Rev. Dana Cloyes came 
for six months and then Rev. Samuel Bowker accepted the call. 
He was very active and successful, but after he went away in 
1855 there is a space of time when no records can be found. It 
seems to have been a time of religious depression all over the 
County as Rev. Mighill Blood laments in the records of the min- 
isterial Association that religion is at a low ebb and "darkness 
reigns at Mount Desert." 

We know that three different ministers were in this church 
during this time and that Dr. Sewall Tenney of Ellsworth came 
several times to hold services and to admit members to the 

In 1866 Rev. David S. Hibbard came as pastor. He and his 
good wife entered at once into the life of the community, there 
was an increase in interest in religion and a revival brought 
many members to the church. Dr. E. M. Cousins, in a historical 
sketch of our church says, "Here, practically, begins the later 
life of the church." The interest aroused by Mr. Hibbard and 
the strength he infused into the church have sustained it ever 

It was a time of sorrow among the people when Mrs. Hib- 
bard's declining health made it necessary for them to seek a 
more inland climate and they went to New Hampshire where 
Mrs. Hibbard died not long after their removal. 

Southwest Harbor 55 

The two churches — one at Manset and one at Pretty Marsh 
and later, the Methodist church at Beech Hill, served the people 
as gathering places for many years, but as the population on 
the north side of the harbor increased and especially after the 
Beech Hill church was demolished, meetings were held in the 
homes and the schoolhouses at Norwood's Cove and at what is 
now the village corner. The Manset church had been located 
to accommodate the people from Cranberry Isles and Bass Har- 
bor; the first road to the latter place being in that locality. In 
1847 mention is made in the records of holding meetings in the 
schoolhouse "at South Norwood's Cove" and at "North Nor- 
wood's Cove." It is to be remembered that there were a number 
of homes in the woods toward Somesville, all with large families. 

In 1860 the new schoolhouse at the village was built. This 
was quite a pretentious building for those days with two stories, 
a cupola and a bell and the lower room arranged to accommodate 
church services as well as the school with a pulpit-like desk and 
an organ enclosed in a case for protection. 

Here the services were held until the completion of the Union 
church, now the Congregational church. 

In 1853 the church at Somesville was built, but the people did 
not separate themselves from the mother church until 1876. 
Cranberry Isles was made a separate church in 1899 and the 
church at Tremont was incorporated in 1922. 

The need of a church building had been felt for a long time 
by the people of the north side of the harbor and a reply from 
the president of the Bangor Seminary to a letter written by Rev. 
Timothy Lynam during his brief residence as pastor, says in 
regard to the building of a church, "You can do no better than 
to be guided by the excellent judgment of Deacon H. H. Clark 
in this matter." 

And so it was decided to build a church to accommodate the 
different denominations in the town. After much discussion the 
location was settled and the land purchased of Deacon Clark. 
Ground was broken for the foundation on the morning of Tues- 
day, October 9th, 1883. James T. Clark was master builder. 
The foundation was completed and the building raised and closed 
in before cold weather. The following summer, the women of 

56 Traditions and Re^cords 

the Ladies Benevolent Society held a strawberry festival in the 
unfinished church to raise money for its completion. 

Rev. Amos Redlon accepted a call to the Congregational 
parish beginning his duties in June of 1884. The church was 
completed before the summer of 1885 and Rev. Oliver H. Fer- 
nald preached the first sermon within its walls. The dedication 
took place on September 9, 1885, and the dedicatory sermon was 
by Rev. J. E. Adams, president of the Bangor Theological Semi- 

A newspaper of 1884 tells us that the Ladies Benevolent 
Society placed the sum of $889.80 in the church treasury for the 
purchase of church furniture and Rev. Amos Redlon was en- 
trusted with the commission to make the purchase, which he did 
and the newspaper account says that "the report being eminently 
satisfactory to the society, it was accepted and a vote of thanks 
tendered to Mr. Redlon for the prompt and efficient manner in 
which he had invested the funds." 

The society then bent all energies toward the purchase of a 
furnace, which was accomplished before the year was out. 

The first donation toward a bell for the new edifice was re- 
ceived from a summer visitor, a Capt. Connor of Seabright, 
N. Y., who sailed into the harbor in his yacht while the process 
of building was going on and wrote later to Mr. Redlon to ask 
how the church was progressing and what were its needs. Mr. 
Redlon replied with details and received from Capt. Connor $25 
toward a bell for the building. This was purchased and hung in 
the belfry in 1887. 

Mrs. Redlon presented the Bible for the pulpit and Miss 
McNaughton, who was a summer visitor at the Dirigo, made and 
presented the embroidered book mark which is still in use, 
August 8, 1885, is the date when the church doors were first 
opened with pews and pulpit furniture all in place. Rev. Warren 
Applebee of the Methodist church, Prof. Fernald of Orono and 
Rev. Ingalls, minister of the Seal Cove Baptist church, assisted 
in the service. 

The plates for the offering were given by Mrs. Jesse Pease. 
A newspaper item of December, 1884, says, "the quilt on which 
$100 has been raised for the new church was sent as a Christmas 
gift to Rev. and Mrs. A. N. Jones at Phippsburg, Maine." Mr. 

Southwest Harbor 57 

Jones had been minister of the Southwest Harbor church at a 
previous time. 

The first communion set is of pewter and is still used by the 
church at Tremont. In 1892 the one hundredth anniversary of 
the founding of the church was celebrated on October seven- 
teenth and Rev. Amos Redlon came from his pastorate at Scar- 
boro to be present. The sacrament was administered using this 
service. In many families six generations have been baptized 
from that same old pewter chalice. 

On November 3, 1935, the fiftieth anniversary of the church 
building was celebrated. The morning sermon was preached by 
Rev. John M. Arters of Bangor, District Superintendent of the 
Methodist church and in the evening the sermon was by Rev. 
Oscar L. Olsen of Castine, a former pastor. Mrs. Seth S. Thorn- 
ton gave the history of the first hundred years of the organiza- 
tion and Mrs. Robie M. Norwood told of the events of the last 
fifty years. There was an interesting exhibit of old photographs 
of places and people who have been intimately connected with 
church work in the past. 

Three generations worshipped the Lord in schoolhouses and 
in private homes before the building of the church. Our church 
now is the result of the piety and courage of those seven men 
and eight women who adopted their covenant, signed their names 
and organized the Congregational Church of Mount Desert on 
that October day in 1792. 


On July 5, 1799, a Baptist church was formed at Salisbury 
Cove, the second religious organization to be formed on Mount 
Desert Island. It had members from all parts of the Island; 
several from Southwest Harbor who had been members of the 
Congregational church, felt that the manner of baptism approved 
by the Baptists appealed to them and so were transferred to the 
new church at Salisbury Cove. 

Nicholas Thomas was the first person to be baptized by im- 
mersion and he was clerk of the Salisbury Cove church for more 
than thirty years. 


Burrage's History of Baptists in Maine says, "Elder John 
Tripp and Rev. Isaac Case set out for Mount Desert June 17, 
1802", but no record of their experiences there is given. In a 
report of his missionary labors made February 10, 1803, Mr. 
Case includes Mount Desert among the places he had visited, 
and the church books say that he was at Eden in the autumn of 
1805, which shows that the new churches were frequently visited 
and looked after. 

As the population of Mount Desert increased, other settle- 
ments began to think of forming churches of their own and on 
September 11, 1816, the Baptist church of Tremont was formed 
at Pretty Marsh. 

The record of that meeting reads as follows : 

"The proceedings of the Counsel which convened at Pritty 
Marsh meeting house on September 11th, 1816, consisting of 
the following Elders and messengers from other Respective 
Churches by request viz: 

The First Church in Sedgwick — Elder Eben Pinkham, Br. Jona- 
than Allen, Br. Samuel Herrick, Br. Joseph Herrick, Br. 
Jonah Dodge. 

The Church of Eden — Elder Lemuel Rich, Br. Nicholas Thomas, 
Br. Gideon Mayo. 

The Church in Bluehill — Elder John Roundy, Br. Andrew 
Witham, Br. Amos Allen. 

The Church in Trenton — Elder Job Cushman, Br. Ephm. 

Elder Isaac Case being on a mission was on the Counsel. 
The Counsel proceeded as follows : 
1st. Voted — That the Brethren present take seat with the 

2nd. — Chose Elder Isaac Case, Moderator. 
3i-d.— Chose Elder Eben Pinkham, Clerk. 
4th. — The Articles of Faith and Covenant were then read. 
5th. Then the following persons came forward and related their 

Experiences for Baptism. Males — Francis Grindal, George 

Butler ; Females — Judith Grindal, Martha Reed, Polly Bart- 

lett, Hannah Page, Polly Milliken." 

Rev. Lemuel Norton and his second wife, Sophronia Averill Norton. 
Mr. Norton was the first minister of the Baptist Church at Seal Cove. 

Southwest Harbor . 59 

Another meeting was held on September 12 and five persons 
baptized. The records say, "After returning from the water the 
following persons were embodied by the Counsel into a church : 
Ezra H. Dodge, Simeon Milliken, Davis Wasgatt, James Reed, 
George Butler, Amos C. Lunt, Francis Grindal, John Billings, 
Judith Grindal, Martha Reed, Polly Bartlett, Polly Milliken, 
Polly Bartlett 2n, Apphia Bartlett, Lois Bartlett. 

Davis Wasgatt was chosen clerk and Br. Ezra H. Dodge dea- 

Many names were soon added to the list of members and it 
was voted to hold a Conference the last Saturday of each month 
"and if any member shall neglect to attend the monthly confer- 
ence they shall give reasons for such neglect." The sacrament 
of the Lord's Supper was first administered to this church by 
Elder Isaac Case." 

Elder Case was one of the prominent Baptists in Maine. He 
was born in Rehoboth, Mass., February 25, 1761, and ordained 
to the Baptist ministry, September 10, 1783. He came to Thom- 
aston, Maine, to preach and there married Joanna, daughter of 
Elisha Snow of that town on June 26, 1785. It seems to have 
been Elder Case who persuaded Rev. Daniel Merrill of Sedgwick 
to change from the Congregational faith to that of the Baptist, 
which he did and his church for the most part followed his lead. 

November 25, 1820, Elder Lemuel Norton was received into 
the church by letter and on July 31st of the same year, Sister 
Polly Norton was received into fellowship by a recommendation 
from the church in Brooksville, Maine. 

Mr. Norton was the first settled minister of the Baptist 
church of Seal Cove and this church had members from all the 
settlements on the western side of Mount Desert Island. 

Elder Norton was in many ways a remarkable man. He had 
visited Mount Desert Island as an itinerant preacher and in his 
biography, which he wrote in his later life, he describes the hard- 
ships of a traveler and says : ****** "I next visited Mount Desert 
where there had been some religious interest among the people 
and a goodly number had found the Saviour precious to their 
souls and a small Baptist church had been organized by Rev. 
Father Case and Rev. Bryant Linnen. In this place I stopped 

60 Traditions and Re^cords 

a number of Sabbaths and preached with much freedom. Here 
was a large Congfregational church. Father Eaton was their 
minister and had been for many years, though, being rather illit- 
erate, he had never been ordained, because it was against their 
rules to ordain an illiterate man to the work of the ministry. 

Quite a number of this church had left and become Baptists 
and joined the newly organized Baptist church. In the spring 
of 1819 the church at Mount Desert sent for me to make them 
another visit, which I accordingly did and preached with them a 
number of months to good satisfaction. In the fall of this year 
I was engaged to keep the winter school in one of their districts 
called the Cape district." 

Mr. Norton then goes on to tell how he eked out his slender 
income by rigging ships that were built in the vicinity and for 
which he received "high pay." He worked at this during the 
summer, taught the fall term of school for twelve weeks and 
went home to Brooksville. 

To resume his narrative : **** "A number of persons agreed 
to give me fifty dollars apiece if I would move to Mount Desert 
the next spring, which should have nothing to do with my salary, 
which would be about two hundred dollars a year. After con- 
sulting my family and friends in Brooksville with reference to 
this important step, I finally concluded to sell out what prop- 
erty I had in Brooksville and purchase a small farm in Mount 
Desert. This I attended to in the course of the winter and when 
the spring opened in the month of April, a vessel was sent in 
which two of the brethren came and took on board my goods 
and what cattle I had and myself and family arrived at Mount 
Desert in the month of April on Fast Day 1820, where the people 
all turned out, took all my effects on shore, and hauled them up 
and deposited them in our new house that I had purchased for 
our residence during our stay upon this island of the sea. I 
would here observe that this is a large island, perhaps twenty 
miles long and about twelve broad, containing at that time two 
towns, Eden and Mount Desert, with, say, about three thousand 
inhabitants. Here, in the spring of 1820, I commenced a stated 
labor in the Gospel ministry." 

The path of the church was beset with the same difficulties 
of other churches. The records tell us that a sister was accused 

SouTHWE^sT Harbor 61 

of "Disorderly conduct in partaking of the Lord's Supper in the 
Free Baptist Church." Special meetings had to be called to 
settle difficulties between members ; some were settled and others 
made worse by the public airing which they had received. Sev- 
eral members were reproved for partaking of Communion with 
other denominations. If they confessed that they were in the 
wrong they were forgiven, but if they did not their names were 
stricken from the rolls. 

After a few years Elder Norton began to doubt the wisdom 
of the Close Communion and in his autobiography he states that 
"there was a large and somewhat wealthy Congregational church 
whose minister preached in our section of the town a part of the 
time. But when away, his people would attend our meeting, and 
especially would they be at our communion seasons." He says 
that it was hard to exclude these friends from the communion 
table but it had to be done. And so he became dissatisfied with 
the condition of affairs and began to preach accordingly express- 
ing his doubt of the wisdom of exclusion. This action occa- 
sioned much disturbance in the church and on June first 1828 
Elder Norton, at his own request, was dismissed from the church. 
In his last sermon he was accused by one of the deacons of 
"publicly condemning the Calvinist Baptists, saying that they 
were a proud denomination — that he had been fettered or shac- 
kled by them fifteen years — that he never ought to have belonged 
to this church — that now he had got his fetters off, that he had 
tried times before to come out from them, but had not strength, 
that he never ought to have been the pastor or shepherd of 
this church, that they ought to have rejected him before now, 
but God had now given him strength and he had left them etc." 
The record goes on to say that "the committee would add more 
but do not wish to be too particular. Your committee are at 
a loss to reconcile the above stated conduct and declarations with 
the work of an under shepherd in feeding the flock with the 
milk of the word with consistency of profession or even with 

The Elder declared in open meeting that all these charges 
were correct and expressed his condition of mind. 

As soon as he was entirely free from his connection with the 

62 Traditions and Records 

church, he set about to organize a Free Will Baptist church and 
on September 20, 1828, a company met at "the dwelling place of 
a Mr. Thurston who was later a keeper of the light at Bass 
Harbor", adopted articles of faith, chose Bro. Francis Gilley for 
their deacon and Bro. Richardson for their clerk. He writes 
that "after a few years some died, others moved away into the 
country and finally the church became extinguished." Mr. Nor- 
ton went to Cranberry Island where he held meetings and made 
some converts and writes that "Sister Abigail Spurling, whose 
husband was master of a brig then on a voyage to Belfast, Ire- 
land, was the first person to be baptized by immersion at that 

Meetings were also held at Otter Creek. When the Free Will 
Baptist church was discontinued it is said that their communion 
set was sent to Bates College. 

In 1832 Elder Bedell visited Seal Cove and by his preaching 
so stirred the people that ninety-two persons were added to the 
membership in less than two years. It was in that year that 
Rev. Calvin L. Cary began his ministry there which lasted eleven 
years, during which time he served faithfully and well and the 
membership increased to one hundred and thirty-one. 

During this time the church building was begun about 1802 
and never quite completed, was burned in a forest fire. The old 
foundation stones are still in place. It was a great loss as the 
people did not feel equal to taking on the burden of building a 
new church. The Congregational membership had all but dis- 
appeared from the vicinity and the Baptists would have to do the 
work by themselves. About the time when they were most de- 
pressed, a freshet brought a quantity of lumber down from Ells- 
worth, which the men of the place salvaged and started a new 
building, feeling that Providence indeed had shown them the 
way. This building blew down before it was completed. 

In 1837 a meeting house was built at Center to serve as a 
distinctly Baptist church. This house is still (1938) standing 
near the residence of Frank Hodgdon. In the gale of January 
10, 1878, the steeple was wrenched off and never rebuilt. Inter- 
est began to decline, perhaps because of the financial burden 
which was put upon the people by building, and affairs grew 
worse until in 1853 Elder Cary returned to give them part of his 

Southwest Harbor 63 

time in an effort to build up the society. Mr. Gary's salary was 
paid in part by the Maine Missionary Society. 

The center of interest had changed to Seal Cove and services 
were held there in the schoolhouse. When Elder Gary returned 
in 1853 the records say that he wished "to make one more effort 
to sustain preaching." In this attempt the church was substan- 
tially aided by Gapt. Wills Garver and Gapt. Ezra Reed who 
"took a deep interest in securing the services of Bro. Gary. Sev- 
eral other sea captains and respectable fellow citizens came for- 
ward and subscribed to his support." 

Rev. Gary was induced to relinquish his place as a missionary 
and to act as pastor of the church. He investigated its standing, 
drew up resolutions regarding dealings with members who had 
fallen from grace, and made a list of those who were faithful. 
He offered pardon to any former member who should return to 
the fold. They purchased a new record book, appointed Deacon 
Benjamin Dodge clerk and the new book contains a list of all 
members with dates of their admission and also of all dealings 
with them. 

The people took heart and began plans for building a church 
at Seal Gove. 

On April 8, 1893, a church of twelve members was formed 
at Northeast Harbor and in 1895 the Southwest Harbor members 
withdrew and formed a church of their own at Manset. This 
body was organized December 9, 1897. 

Thus the First Baptist church is the Mother of two other 

The little group of faithful workers struggled on through the 
years, often through difficulties, but never discouraged, and on 
July 28, 1914, the new building at Seal Gove was dedicated. 

The pastor. Rev. Frank G. Dresser, read the history of the 
church. Scripture reading by Rev. Mr. Purington of Bar Harbor 
and prayer by Rev. Emma Harrison of the West Tremont Meth- 
odist church. The lot for the new church was given by Albert 
Ober and the society extended thanks to Gapt. G. H. Robbins 
and sons of Atlantic for assistance and to Reuben Davis of Tren- 
ton for the gift of a handsome desk. Rev. I. B. Mower preached 
the dedicatory sermon and Rev. P. A. A. Killam of Ellsworth 

64 Traditions and Records 

offered the dedicatory prayer. There was a supper at the home 
of Mrs. Angeline Powers and services continued in the evening. 

The Manset Baptists in 1895 bought of William King his 
house as a parsonage. In 1935 this house was sold to Leslie 
S. King. 

The history of the Baptist church would not be complete 
without additional mention of Elder Lemuel Norton, its first 
minister. He was born in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard and 
went to sea at an early age. His biography is quite a remark- 
able book with the true flavor of the sea reminding the reader 
of Dana's Two Years Before the Mast. It is a vivid picture of 
a sailor's life in the early part of the nineteenth century and 
shows that the men of Mount Desert Island, in common with 
those all along the Maine coast, visited far-flung ports of the 
world. He speaks of encountering his neighbors in Gibralter, in 
Calcutta, in ports of China and he tells of the cruelties practised 
by brutal officers on board ship in those days when there was 
but slight redress for the common sailor. 

After several years of the sea the young man felt the urge 
for more education and then the call to preach. Many of his 
descendants are now residents of Mount Desert Island and 
among the most respected citizens. 

He and his good wife spent their declining years at their 
home at Seal Cove and they sleep their last sleep in the little 
graveyard at West Tremont. 


A letter written before 1830 says that the first Sunday 
Schools on Mount Desert Island were held at the schoolhouse at 
Seal Cove and at a log cabin in Goose Cove or West Tremont 
in 1823-4. The cabin belonged to a John Brown, familiarly 
known as "White Horse Brown" because he rode a white horse 
and to distinguish him from another John Brown. The organ- 
izer of these schools was Mary Wasgatt, daughter of Davis Was- 
gatt of Beech Hill. She was one of a large family and one 
deeply interested in religious work. These schools must have 
been under the auspices of the Baptist church which was organ- 
ized at the western side of Mount Desert in 1816 and to which 
Davis Wasgatt and family belonged. 

Southwest Harbor 65 


At a Conference held in Leeds, England, in 1769, two 
preachers, Richard Boardman and Joseph Pilmore, were sent to 
America. They landed at Gloucester Point, six miles below 
Philadelphia, October 24, 1769. These were the first regular 
itinerant Methodist preachers that ever came to these United 

The first permanent Methodist settlement in America had 
been made at New York in 1766. The preaching was well re- 
ceived in the South from the first, but it was 1791 before it found 
its way to "the spell-bound North." 

On August first, 1793, Jesse Lee says, 'T was myself appointed 
to the Province of Maine, to travel through that country or form 
a circuit where I thought best. As there had never been any 
Methodist preaching there, we had no one to give us a particular 
account of the place or the people ; but it was commonly under- 
stood that they were in want of preaching, and that our manner 
of traveling and preaching would be very suitable for that part 
of the country." He further says, "I set out from Lynn in Sep- 
tember, 1793, for a strange part of the world and was the first 
Methodist preacher that ever went to that Province to preach." 

Again he says, "Although I was a perfect stranger to the 
people and had to make my own appointments, I preached almost 
every day and had crowded assemblies to hear." 

Jesse Lee was from Prince George County, Virginia. He 
was a tall, large man and always rode horseback leading an extra 
horse. It is said that he was ferried across the rivers in two 
boats; tying them together and standing the hind feet of the 
horses in one boat and the forefeet in the other. 

On this journey into Maine he preached at Saco on Septem- 
ber 10, 1793, the first Methodist sermon ever preached in the 

On Saturday, May 7, 1796, Jesse Lee came to Trenton where 
he preached. On Sunday he preached at "Mr. Joy's on Union 
River" and on Monday, May 9 "at Mr. Foster's on Jordan 

On Tuesday, May 10, his journal says, "a young doctor went 
with me down the river and got into a canoe with some other 

66 Traditions and Ri^cords 

people and went over to Mount Desert. We found many col- 
lected for training. Just after our arrival the captain dismissed 
his company. 

Many women had also collected to see the men muster and 
afterwards to have a dance. But when they found out that I 
intended to preach they were at a loss to know what to do ; 
some said, "we will have a dance", others said "nay, but we 
will have a sermon." The woman of the house said if they 
would not hear the gospel they should not dance. The man of 
the house spoke out aloud saying, "If the Lord has sent the man 
let us hear him, but if the devil has sent him let the devil take 
him away." "So I told them I would preach at another house at 
4 o'clock." 

He set off for the place, but had an encounter on the way 
with one of those sturdy theologians who so often crossed his 
path in New England. "He was brimful of religious talk, but 
I soon discovered that he was a strong fatalist ; when he found 
out that I believe that Christ died for all men, and that the Lord 
called all men, he got into a violent passion and with abundance 
of fury, called it a damnable doctrine and appeared to be ready 
to swear outright. Poor man, how small a thing it is for a man 
to call himself a Christian while he is governed by wrath and 
an evil spirit." 

Arriving at the appointed house he preached with his usual 
power and effect. "The Lord (says Lee) was very precious to 
my soul, and many of the hearers were melted into tears, and 
heard the word as though it had been for their lives. But while 
I was speaking, the fore-mentioned man and another of his 
party, kept shaking their heads at each other as much as to say, 
'That is not true.' At last I stopped and said to one of them, 
*I should be glad if you will try to keep your head still.' He 
behaved better afterwards. 

Mount Desert is now divided into two towns ; the one I 
preached in is called Eden. This was the first Methodist ser- 
mon ever preached in the town ; and I feel a pleasing hope that 
a lasting blessing will attend it. I lodged with Mr. Paine that 

Southwe;st Hareor 67 

Methodism seems to have been received whole-heartedly in 
Maine, perhaps due to the eloquent preaching and the magnetic 
personality of the remarkable and indefatigable Jesse Lee. The 
first Methodist meeting house in Maine had been built at East 
Readfield in the fall of 1794 and dedicated by Jesse Lee, June 21, 
1795. The first quarterly meeting ever held in the State was in 
this meeting house October 20, 1795. 

The Methodist Conference was organized in 1825 and as pop- 
ulation spread and churches increased, the Eastern Maine Con- 
ference was created at Biddeford in 1847 and the first session 
held at the Pine St. Church in Bangor. 

Circuit preachers from Congregational and Baptist churches 
came and went to the Mount Desert villages in the years to come, 
but no Methodist preaching was heard on the Island from the 
time of Jesse Lee's visit in 1796 until 1828 when Rev. David 
Stimpson of the Penobscot circuit, with Rev. Rufus C. Bailey, 
came to look after the interests of their belief. 

A class of thirteen was formed in the Beech Hill neighbor- 
hood which became the nucleus of a Methodist Episcopal church, 
and from this small beginning, at Beech Hill was built and dedi- 
cated in the summer of 1838 by Rev. John Wesley Dow, the first 
Methodist Episcopal church on Mount Desert Island. The foun- 
dation stones of this church may be seen now where the road 
forks, and one road leads to Beech Hill from the road around 
the head of Long Pond. 

The Methodist church of Mount Desert Island owes much to 
the Maine Missionary Society as do all the other churches, for 
the assistance given in sending ministers to preach for a few 
months at a time and thus keep the religious life vital. 

Following is a list of the preachers who served the Beech Hill 
church which was attended by people from all over the Island : 
W. S. Douglass, 1831-2; B. D. Eastman and T. B. Spaulding, 
1834; B. M. Smith, 1835-6; Levi C. Dunn, 1835; John Wesley 
Dow, 1837-8; D. P. Thompson, 1839-40; Mark Tuell, 1840; H. C. 
Tilton, 1841; J. P. Hutchings, 1841; B. M. Mitchell, 1842-3; 
A. P. Battey, 1845-6; William J. Wilson, 1849-50; Ammi Prince, 

Mr. Prince preached at Tremont in 1852. This is the first 

68 Traditions and Records 

mention in any available records of Methodist preaching at Tre- 
mont although the ministers above mentioned must frequently 
have preached at the Manset church, and had some following 
in the town. 

Daniel Staples is mentioned as preaching at Tremont in 1853 
and Levi C. Dunn in 1854. Kendrick N. Meservey was at Mount 
Desert in 1856, Joseph King in 1857-8 and Irving A. Wardwell 
in 1859. 

B. F. Stinson was settled at Southwest Harbor and preached 
regularly there in 1859-60, Percival G. Wardwell in 1861, Clark- 
son B. Roberts also in 1861, John A. Plumer in 1862-3 and in 
1864-66 Mr. Plumer is recorded as preaching at Mount Desert. 

This seems to have been the last of the preaching at the 
Beech Hill church and a few years later the building was torn 
down and the lumber, doors, windows, etc., divided among the 
people of the community who used them in the building or re- 
pairing of their own homes. Several of the old houses in that 
vicinity have doors and windows that once served in the church 
and in the house which John G. Richardson built for his own 
home the little brass buttons from the new doors were used as 
fastenings on the doors. 

John Wesley Dow who was the minister at the time Beech 
Hill church was built and dedicated, served also the church at 
Manset and lived at Seawall. About 1885 his son, John Wesley 
Dow, Jr., visited Southwest Harbor and while here he presented 
to the Manset church the pulpit which is now in use there. 

Mark Tuell is another minister whose short stay among the 
people seems to have been a memorable one. He was young, 
but an impassioned preacher, very earnest and very eloquent. It 
is recorded in Pillsbury's Methodism in Maine that a Mr. Free- 
man Maker of Cutler, Maine, had heard Mr. Tuell preach and 
was eager to have him come to Cutler. So he went in pursuit 
and found him holding meetings in Whiting. Brother Tuell 
hesitated when he heard the errand but told Mr. Maker that if 
he would wait fifteen minutes he would tell him. Soon his voice 
was heard in earnest prayer in the woods. He soon came back 
and told Mr. Maker that the Lord said he might go. A revival 
was the result of the labors of Mr. Tuell and Rev. James Thur- 

Southwest Harbor 69 

ston who was the minister at East Machias. This was in the 
summer of 1839. 

In 1840 he came to Mount Desert Island where he took his 
first appointment as a settled minister to preach at the Manset 
church and at Beech Hill. 

He always spoke in an extremely loud voice. Sailors coming 
in the Western Way often told of hearing him as he was speak- 
ing in the Manset church. He once called upon the family of 
Isaac Lurvey and suggested that he was willing to ofifer prayer. 
Mrs. Lurvey was a frail woman often in ill health and her hus- 
band told Mr. Tuell that he would like to have the prayer but 
that his wife was not able to stand the loud voice with which he 
spoke. If he could be more moderate in speaking they would 
be happy to hear him. The minister allowed that he could not 
speak with less fervor, but that he would step outside and offer 
prayer, which he did, going some distance from the house and 
the family inside had no difficulty in hearing him distinctly. 

One warm Sunday in July he preached with his accustomed 
vigor and at full length at Manset, then, without waiting for his 
noon meal he hurried up over the mountain to Beech Hill where 
he preached again at great length. For supper he ate freely of 
hot biscuits and raspberries and cream and was found dead in his 
bed in the morning. So his first pastorate was his last. He was 
buried in the little burying ground by the roadside at Beech Hill 
and his simple white stone records his age as thirty-three years. 
And still, after the lapse of nearly a century, incidents of his 
short life are remembered. 

Benjamin F. Stinson, who was the minister at Southwest 
Harbor at three different times and who owned and lived for 
many years on the place now owned by Mrs. C. E. Cook, was the 
son of William Stinson, Esq., who came to Deer Island from 
Woolwich, Maine, in 1765. The son was settled for some time 
at Swan's Island from which place he came to Southwest Harbor 
in 1859. He was a resident here from that time to the day of his 

He often took his boat on a sort of trailer behind his carriage, 
drove to Bass Harbor, put up his horse and rowed to Swan's 
Island where he held services and returned the same way. 

70 Traditions and Records 

Mr. Stinson was an ingenious man and had many different 
occupations. While living- in the parsonage which was on the 
site of the house now owned by Mrs. John F. Young, he invented 
some sort of liquid kindling for fire. This exploded and set the 
house on fire and it was destroyed. He then purchased the place 
where he lived the rest of his life. He carried on considerable 
farming, raised many cattle and was active in many ways. 

Mr. Stinson served the Methodist church in Southwest Har- 
bor the second time in 1867-69. In 1870 Rev. E. C. Boynton and 
William Reed preached here and at West Tremont. In 1871 
Rev. Joshua A. L. Rich served as minister for one year and then 
Mr. Stinson was minister until the close of 1875. The ministers 
since that time have been as follows : William H. Crawford, 
2nd, 1876-77; Richard H. McGown, 1878; Charles Rogers, 1879- 
81 ; James S. Allen, 1882-3. During the time Mr. Rogers and Mr. 
Allen were here they had as an assistant, J. H. Moors. Nelson 
Whitney and J. W. Day, 1884; Warren Applebee, 1885; Oliver 
H. Fernald and J. B. Conley, 1886; Oliver H. Fernald and Wes- 
ley C. Haskell, 1887-8 ; Wesley C. Haskell, 1889-90. 

It was during the stay of Rev. Wesley C. Haskell in 1889 
that the present Methodist church was built. The memorial win- 
dow in the front gable was given by Mr. Haskell and his brother 
in memory of their mother, Augusta C. Haskell. The pulpit set 
was given by Mr. and Mrs. Obadiah Allen of Somesville who 
were members of the church and regular attendants. The Sun- 
day School was organized that year with a membership of fifty- 
four. The dedication of the church took place on August 9, 1889 
with Dr. N. A. Spencer of Philadelphia, Dr. J. N. Hamilton of 
Boston, Bishop Mallalieu of New Orleans and Rev. Norman La 
Marsh taking active parts. Miss Hattie Somes of Somesville 
was organist. The church was lavishly decorated and crowded 
to the doors at both morning and afternoon services. The sum 
of $500 was raised at each service by cash or by pledge so the 
building was declared free from debt. Rev. Sarah Treworgy of 
Surry spent some time in town soon after the church was dedi- 
cated and conducted revival services which added many members 
to the roll. 

The parsonage was built in 1897. 

Southwest Harbor 71 

In 1888 the members at West Tremont organized a separate 
church and soon after 1900 the church at that village was built. 
The Methodist ministers of Southwest Harbor have also 
preached at Hall Quarry and supervised a Sunday School there. 

After Mr. Haskell came LeRoy Bates, Ph.D., 1890; Artemas 
J. Haynes, June 1892; Joseph L. Hoyle, Sept. 1892; Artemas J. 
Haynes, May 1893 (Mr. Haynes was a student and preached 
during vacations); Joseph H. Thompson, Dec. 1893; W. T. 
Johnson, May 1894; W. H. Powlesland, May 1895; D. H. 
Piper, April 1897; M. T. Anderson, May 1898; F. W. Brooks, 
May 1899; Harry Hill, May 1902; J. B. Aldrich, April 1904 
to April 1906; Oscar G. Barnard, April 1906 to April 1910; 
Royal W. Brown, April 1910 to April 1912; G. C. Richardson, 
April 1912 to April 1913. Various supplies between 1913 
and 1914. William Van Vallenburg, Dec. 25, 1914 to Sept. 
1915; H. F. Doran, 1915 to 1916; Roy C Dalzell, 1917 to 1918; 
Elijah Mercer, 1918, part of year ; T. L. Blaisdell, Sept. 4, 1919 
to 1921; Lloyd E. Marble, May 1922 to May 1924; John E. 
Blake, 1924-28; Harold O. Wooster, Oct. 21, 1928 to 1930. 

In 1930 the Larger Parish plan was adopted. 

Once during the history of the Methodist church of this 
vicinity, a camp meeting was held within its borders on the east 
side of Somes Sound, near its mouth and nearly opposite Fernald 
Point. The site was called for years Camp Meeting Point. 

Methodist preachers from Southwest Harbor for many years 
preached also at West Tremont but in 1888 it became a separate 
charge and a church was organized in 1892. A hall was pur- 
chased for a meeting house and in 1900 it was torn down and the 
present church was built. 



Rev. R. L. Carson 

Early in the 1900's Mr. Green of Bar Harbor and Mr. Jobe 
of Hull's Cove began missionary work at Seal Cove, holding ser- 
vices in private houses and in the public hall. Forty-four per- 

72 Traditions and Records 

sons were baptized. There were several summer residents com- 
municants of the church on the western side of the island, and in 
order to minister to them and the local residents, it was decided 
to station a priest in charge of the mission as a permanent resi- 
dent. Bishop Codman was fortunate in his choice of a mission- 
ary in sending, in 1913, the late Rev. William T. Forsythe. This 
devoted missionary in his brief five years of service established 
the church as an abiding monument to his memory. He began 
with 19 communicants and 25 baptized. 

During his ministry he baptized one hundred and eleven, con- 
firmed fifty and ministered to many outside the Episcopal 
church. He built three churches. Over bad roads and under 
very trying circumstances he carried on his work, frequently 
walking to all parts of the mission. He died in 1918 beloved by 
all who knew him, and his name is still held in reverence among 
the people for whose spiritual welfare he so self-sacrificingly 

The Church at St.-Andrew-by-the-Lake at Seal Cove was 
built in 1914. The ground had been donated by Mr. and Mrs. 
William Harper. The local residents raised five hundred dollars 
and Bishop Codman solicited the remainder toward erecting a 
fine church. The first service was held on January 2, 1915. 

After Mr. Forsythe's death a bell was procured and dedicated 
to his memory. 

Church of St. John-the-Divine, Southwest Harbor 

Both because of its advantages in communication and also in 
education, Southwest Harbor had been selected as the site of a 
rectory for a married priest with children. Bishop Codman 
bought and presented the present rectory to the Mission. In 
1914 there were no regular services in the Congregational and 
Methodist churches in that village and no resident ministers to 
those churches. Mr. Forsythe was called upon to look after the 
sick and to bury many. The Episcopal summer residents and 
some of the local residents wished him to hold services, which 
he did in the public hall. By 1918 a church had been erected. 
A few women organized as a Guild and by means of sales etc. 
have managed to defray most of the cost of building the church. 

Southwest Harbor 7Z 

Since then they have added a chancel, parish room and vestry 
at a cost of $2000. Mr. Forsythe did not live to preach in the 
church he had so labored to build. His funeral was the first ser- 
vice to be held in it. 

St. Columba's Church, Gott's Island 

A lady from Philadelphia, Miss Peterson, had made Gott's 
Island her permanent home, building her cottage on a point on 
the outer or seaward side of the island, where the light from 
her window was a beacon for the fishermen. She was a very 
devout church woman and beloved by the residents. 

It was her dream to build a little church on the island, which 
dream was ultimately fulfilled. In 1916 the baptism of Beatrice 
Elaine Boynton is recorded as having been performed in St. 
Columba's Church, Gott's Island, on September 17. Services had 
been held in the schoolhouse two years prior to that. St. 
Columba was a most appropriate name for this little island 
church. It reminds one of the long centuries of church history 
from Columba (A.D. 513-597) and his chapel on lona. 

Miss Peterson provided the building as well as its furnish- 
ings. But misfortune came to the little church. In 1925 Miss 
Peterson lost her life in a fire which burned her cottage in the 
night. Subsequently, the lure of the mainland drew away the 
inhabitants, until today the island is abandoned to a few tourists 
and the little church is falling into decay. 

Such is the brief outline of the history of Southern Mount 
Desert Mission to date (1937). Little has been said of the 
loyalty and devotion of our island people to this mission, and 
of the splendid support of Episcopal summer residents and visi- 
tors. A group of ladies in the summer colony at Northeast Har- 
bor, known as the "Northeast Committee of Southern Mount 
Desert Mission" has kept the mission functioning through their 
efiforts and generosity. It is a fine example of the Catholic 
spirit which has kept the Church maintained through the cen- 
turies. And what are the fruits of all the prayers and efforts of 
our people? Beginning with one resident communicant at Seal 
Cove in 1910 (Mrs. William Harper) 405 people have been bap- 
tized and 306 confirmed. Not much, in comparison with more 

74 Traditions and Records 

populous and more receptive areas, but a great deal on the west- 
ern side of Mount Desert Island. 

Clergy serving this mission are: 1913-18, Rev. Wm. T. 
Forsythe; 1918-19, Rev. A. R Freese; 1919-21, Rev. R. D. 
Mulaney; 1922-25, Rev. L. C. Morrison; 1926- , Rev. R. L. 



In the spring of 1935 Christian Science services were held at 
the home of Mrs. Archie R. Salisbury in Southwest Harbor, con- 
tinuing through the summer and the following winter. During 
the summer of 1936 the society rented the Methodist church for 
their Sunday services and in the autumn they moved to a room 
in the Odd Fellows' building where regular Sunday services are 


The Mutual Improvement and Benevolent Society was organ- 
ized on June 28, 1853, at what is now Manset. The opening lines 
of the constitution say that the society "is to be devoted to work 
and useful reading and one hour is to be set aside for reading 
at each meeting." The refreshments are limited to "bread, 
butter, tea, cake and sauce with cheese occasionally." The gen- 
tlemen are permitted to come to supper and also to join the 
society as honorary members by paying a fee and many availed 
themselves of the opportunity. Evidently the first record book 
has been mislaid, as the first record at hand now tells of the 
events of 1860 when Mrs. Catharine Newman was president, Mrs. 
Mary Ann Hodgkins, vice president, and Mrs. Melvina S. Tucker, 
secretary and treasurer. 

These worn record books tell of much work done by these 
faithful women, working for the good of their community. 
They contributed to the church, they painted it, they cleaned it, 
they made curtains for the windows. In 1860 they purchased 
a hearse and paid for a house to be built for it. The vehicle 
cost $125 and when its services were required in other communi- 
ties a small fee was paid. 

Southwe:st Harbor 75 

On July fourth, 1861, they held a fair and a patriotic address 
was delivered by Arno Wiswell, Esq., of Ellsworth. The rec- 
ords say that the society voted "z vote of thanks to Arno Wis- 
well, Esq., for his patriotic address and we earnestly desire that 
the spirit therein manifested may wake an echo in every breast 
until rebellion shall be forever crushed and the bonds of Union 
indissolubly cemented." 

They purchased the bell which now hangs in the steeple of 
the Manset church, paying $193.42 for it of Naylor and Co., Bos- 
ton. This was November 7, 1866. 

Through the next few years there is but one mention in the 
records of the war that was ravaging the land. On May 31, 1864, 
the society met at Mrs. Durgain's and it is recorded that "Miss 
Hopkins closed by playing and singing Just Before the Battle, 
Mother. It reached all our hearts as our dear ones were fighting 
for our country." 

About 1865 they purchased a sofa for the pulpit and also a 
new carpet. 

They answered to the call of charity and one of the entries 
in the treasurer's accounts is of $1.50 paid for boards to make a 

They loaned money on notes to their townspeople and col- 
lected their interest. Just before one of the fairs there is an 
entry of $1.50 paid to Mrs. Melville Moore for a frame for a hair 
wreath. These wreaths were made from human hair and were 
most ingeniously constructed with different colored hair woven 
into flowers and leaves and enclosed in a deep frame such as was 
also used for wreaths of wax flowers. 

Then they decided to build a public hall and a meeting was 
called to decide the dimensions. Thirty by sixty feet were the 
dimensions adopted and Andrew H. Haynes, Henry Newman and 
Peter Moore were chosen as a building committee. It was 
located north of the church. This was in 1876. The books give 
the "whole cost of hall including painting $1106.95." The cost 
of building the chimney was $3.50 for labor, the society provid- 
ing all materials. A stage was added later and the walls plas- 
tered at a cost of $75.10. $32 was paid for chandeliers and in 
1881 Nathan Stanley painted the outside of the building and 

76 Traditions and Records 

furnished the paint for $30. That same year William Danby 
received $3.00 for "digging a well and doing some work around 
the hall." 

In 1883 the tax on the hall was $5.05. 

The records show much hard work done by this group of 
women. Several times they record that they met at the church 
and washed the floor and windows and they gave suppers, fairs 
and dances to pay for the hall. Little by little their funds grew 
until all bills were cancelled. Then, as this devoted group grew 
older and the younger generation had other interests, the work 
faltered and finally Centennial Hall was sold and moved to an- 
other location to begin a new order of usefulness. 


The second "Ladies Sewing Circle" in Southwest Harbor was 
organized April 6, 1855, with thirty-four members. Mrs. Joanna 
H. Lurvey was the first president, Mrs. Comfort Thompson, sec- 
retary, Mrs. Priscilla Lurvey, collector and treasurer. The direc- 
tors were Mrs. Ann Louisa Holmes, Mrs. Abigail P. Day and 
Miss Elizabeth Harman. The by-laws provided that the officers 
should stand for three months and then new ones should be 
chosen. The second by-law regulated the refreshments by pro- 
viding that they should "consist of tea, bread and butter and 
either sauce or cheese, as one may choose." 

The object of the society was to "pay the existing debt on 
the Tremont parsonage and to finish the said parsonage." This 
parsonage was a house on the site of the one now (1937) owned 
by Mrs. John F. Young. Not long after the organization of the 
society the parsonage burned and the house now belonging to 
Mrs. Young was built by the community and used as a home for 
the minister for many years. All denominations belonged to the 
sewing circle and helped with the work but the parsonage was 
later known as the Methodist parsonage and the ministers of that 
church occupied it. 

The ladies made men's clothes and on June 11, 1857, they 
made a price list providing that fifty cents must be paid for 
making trousers of thick cloth and twenty-five cents for those of 
thin cloth. A coarse, single-breasted vest would cost fifty cents 

Southwest Harbor T7 

for the making- and a double-breasted vest brought in the sum of 
sixty-two and a half cents. The making of flannel shirts was 
worth thirty-three cents. This was before the days of sewing 
machines and all pockets as well as seams were made by hand. 

The ladies would knit a pair of stockings for seventeen cents 
and the records say "gentlemen can come to tea by paying ten 

Gentlemen were admitted to membership in the circle by the 
payment of fifty cents and many availed themselves of the privi- 
lege and their names are recorded in the book kept by the secre- 
tary. If a woman wanted a calico dress cut and made it could 
be done for fifty cents and a fine shirt would be made for a 
dollar. Seventy-five cents was the price of a pound of stocking 
yarn. The meetings were held only in summer probably because 
of snow-blocked and unbroken roads and the difficulty of heat- 
ing "the spare room" or parlor in cold weather. In 1855 most 
of the houses in this community had fireplaces for cooking as 
well as heating. 

On April 28, 1868, the sewing circle, which had been more or 
less neglected during the war, was reorganized under the name of 
the Tremont General Benevolent Society under which name it 
continued for many years. The parsonage which had burned 
in 1867 was rebuilt and much charitable work done and the 
society seems to have been the source of much of the social life 
of the community. Fairs were held, sometimes at the parsonage ; 
and from one it is recorded that they cleared the sum of $194. 
The suppers were largely attended every week and the rules 
changed so that the hostesses could serve "tea, bread and butter, 
one kind of cake and one other article." 

Although the members were from all parts of the town, the 
early meetings were held in the vicinity of Norwood's Cove and 
the officers seem to have been chosen from that vicinity. For 
several years the record book gives only the place of meeting and 
the money expended. They completed paying for the parsonage, 
they fenced the cemetery, they sewed for the needy and for 
mothers of large families and made articles for the fairs. 

This was the beginning of all the church sewing societies in 
the community. In later years the societies began to be called 
"Ladies Aids." 

78 Traditions and Re^cords 

The time-stained old record book carries on its pages the 
names of many of the ancestors of those who are now carrying 
on the work of the women's organizations in the churches. 


The first menton of an effort to estabHsh a school on Mount 
Desert Island is in the account of a town meeting held June 15, 
1790, when it was voted to raise eighteen pounds for the support 
of schools. On September 6 of that same year the whole island 
was divided into school districts as follows : 

"Voted that one School District shall be from Capt. 
Youngs Down as far as Mr. Lynam's including both 
familys. The next shall be from Capt. Thompson's up to 
John Cousins including both familys ; the Next from thence 
to the mouth of the Northeast Crick, the Next from Sd. 
Crick to the Northwest Cove ; the Next to Consest of Pritty 
Marsh together with Robinson's Island and Sile Cove; the 
next to Consist of Bass Harbor together with Duck and 
Goose Cove and Gotts Island; the Next Southwest Harbor 
together with both of the Sandy Points ; the Next Division 
shall be Both of the Cranberry Islands ; the Next above the 
hills with Beech Hill. Next Bartlett's Island. 

Attest James Richardson, Town Clerk." 

Mr. Lynam, mentioned in the first division then lived at 
Schooner Head; John Cousins lived near the shore a short 
distance southeasterly from the Ovens ; Capt. Young lived at 
Duck Brook; Capt. Thompson lived at Hull's Cove near where 
Calvert Hamor was living in 1902. 

At that time there were but few families living at what is 
now Northeast Harbor, then called Sandy Point, but it would 
seem quite a hardship to transfer children from there to South- 
west Harbor to attend school. There was a considerable popula- 
tion on the Cranberry Islands. According to this division the 
children would have to be brought from what is now Islesford to 
Big Cranberry. The districts were so large that distances must 
have made it impossible for young children to attend school. 

Southwest Harbor 79 

It was some time after these divisions were made before any 
schools were opened. 

On April 4, 1791, the town meeting voted "not to raise any 
money for schools." There must have been dissension over this 
action as on May 2, 1791, another meeting was held and it was 
voted "to raise 50 pounds for support of schools to be paid in 
Produce of the Country at the Currant Market price", and the 
same vote was passed at a meeting the following year. 

On May 7, 1792, as there were four families on the North side 
of North East Crick and three on the South Side who requested 
to be formed into a Separate School District, this was granted 
by the town meeting. At this same meeting the vote against 
separating Maine from Massachusetts was thirty-four votes with 
fifteen for the proposed separation. 

At this same meeting, the Bass Harbor school district "was 
divided by the River into two Districts for the purpose of keep- 
ing school from this time forth" and also "Seal Cove with the 
Inhabitants adjacent thereof be a Separate District for a Sake of 
keeping a school." 

"Forty pounds to be payed in cash" was the sum raised for 
school purposes in 1793. 

Forty-eight votes were cast at this town meeting on April 
first, 1793 for John Hancock as Governor of the Commonwealth, 
forty-eight for Samuel Adams as Lieut. Gov. and forty-eight 
for Senator Alexander Campbell. It would seem that the popu- 
lation of Mount Desert was at that time of the same political 
belief as there was no opposing votes mentioned. 

In 1796 the sum raised for schools for the whole of Mount 
Desert Island was $133.33 "to be divided according to the 
Number of Scholars in each District that is above five years old 
and under twenty one." 

The first school in Southwest Harbor was held in the old 
Harmon house, which stood on the Main Road just south of the 
property now owned by Miss Grace M. Simmons and which all 
formerly belonged to the Harmon estate. At the time the school 
was held in this house only one room was finished and one of the 
pupils who lived to a great age, said that the children amused 
themselves at recess by hopping from timber to timber in the 

80 Traditions and Re^cords 

unfinished and unfloored rooms. This first school was a "dame 
school", said to have been taught by Mrs. Polly Milliken. 

Knitting and sewing were a part of the instruction for every 
girl and later, when the terms of school were longer, men were 
employed as teachers in winter when "the big boys" attended, 
and the science of navigation was taught to them with more or 
less skill, according to the ability of the teacher. 

The first schoolhouse to be built in Southwest Harbor was 
at Norwood's Cove directly across the road from the house now 
owned by Mrs. John F. Young and at the top of the hill. It was 
also used for religious meetings and occasionally for town 
meetings. This was soon after 1795. It was a "hip roof" building 
with seats around three sides of the room. This building served 
as an institution of learning until 1860 when a new schoolhouse 
was built farther along on Fernald Road. This school was dis- 
continued in 1914 and the pupils sent to the building at the 
village center. Allston Sargent of New York bought the old 
schoolhouse and it was taken down in the spring of 1937. 

In 1839 we find mention in church records of the school- 
house at South Norwood's Cove which is the name by which 
what is now the village center was called. Later this is referred 
to as "the Freeman school." This first school building was a 
single-room, substantial house with home made seats, capable 
of seating from fifty to sixty pupils. It had a box stove and a 
wide crack in the floor which the pupils were required to "toe" 
made for straight lines when the spelling classes stood up for 
their oral spelling lesson. Rev. Edgar M. Cousins, a native of 
Southwest Harbor, wrote as follows on his school days: 

"From 1850 to 1860 when the writer's personal recollec- 
tions begin, both houses were crowded in winter and in- 
struction was given by schoolmasters of whom any town 
might be proud. Among these teachers were three natives 
of the town; the Fernald brothers, Oliver H. and Charles 
H. and William W. A. Heath. The Fernalds, who were then 
obtaining the education which fitted them for their im- 
portant places in the world, divided their time between their 
home district in the old Norwoods Cove house at the head 
of the Cove and other parts of the town, especially district 

Southwest Harbor 81 

No. 3 in the 'Durgain District' at the south side of the 
harbor, and some of the Bass Harbor districts. 

"In the village schoolhouse Mr. Heath taught for at 
least seven successive winters, beginning about 1855 and 
ending in 1862 or 3 and then only on account of the intense 
political strain induced by the Civil War, then at its height. 
He taught the first term of school in the 'upstairs room' of 
the new 'Freeman schoolhouse.' He was a progressive and 
inspiring teacher and in addition to leading his pupils in the 
perennial struggle with Greenleaf's Old and later New 
National Arithmetic and the Parsing book, he induced them 
to take up the study of Algebra, astronomy, navigation, 
geometry and trigonometry." 

The population of the town was increasing and more room 
for school was needed. The old building was sold to William 
Shields who owned the adjoining property to the south and he 
moved it just over the line where it was used for school while 
the new house was being built and later as a public hall. Then 
the Shields property was purchased by J. T. R. Freeman and 
later it was moved to his lot farther to the south where it was 
used as a part of his dwelling house and is now a part of the 
woodshed and owned by Mr. Freeman's daughter, Mrs. Fred 
A. Walls. 

The new building was two stories with belfry and bell, patent 
seats in the upper room and at the time of building was said 
to be as good a school building as any in the County outside of 

The lower room was furnished with hand made benches and 
desks and all the woodwork was painted a dull red. The room 
was designed to be used for church services and the teacher's 
desk was made like a pulpit with a place in the middle for the 
big Bible. An organ was at the back of the room, enclosed in 
a red-painted wooden case for protection and padlocked to be 
used only on Sundays. The idea of using it in school was never 
considered and never requested. The "pulpit desk" was 
"grained" in a light yellow-brown. A tall stove furnished heat 
and wooden blackboards extended around the room between the 
curtainless windows. For twenty-five years, preaching services, 

82 Traditions and Records 

Sunday Schools, concerts, Qiristmas trees and funerals were 
held in this room as well as writing and singing schools, lyceums 
and other public gatherings. Mrs. Phebe Holden Clark Ross 
taught the first term of school in this room. 

Following Mr. Heath as teachers in the early days came the 
Wentworth brothers, John R. and Freedom of Appleton, Clifton 
G. Huckins of Kenduskeag, James B. Hawes of Brooksville, 
Hervey K. Hawes of Surry, Josiah H. Higgins of Ellsworth, 
Gideon Mayo of Eden, J. M. Frost and Rev. Edgar M. Cousins 
who taught for two winters. 

Dr. Cousins, in an interesting letter of his boyhood memories 
writes : "The regular studies in those schools were not neglected 
nor the hours limited as shown by the days lengthened regularly 
to the twilight of the winter's day that the 'parsing class' might 
stay and have it out with the etymological intricacies of Paradise 
Lost and other classics of the parsing book. For variety on 
Wednesday afternoons came something fresh from the well- 
stored minds of the teachers. From O. H. Fernald one pupil 
recalls a series of fascinating tales which he afterwards realized 
were the stories of Homer and the classic myths which the 
teacher was taking in his college preparatory work. It was good 
work for teacher to give and for pupil to hear." 

Dr. Cousins in his letter described the spelling schools in 
which the parents often took part and the best speller in town 
was regarded with a sort of awe by the school children and with 
respect at least, by their elders for it was no small distinction. 
He writes too of the dramatic features of school life, including 
the closing exhibition of each winter term. 

He continues : "Perhaps the culmination of this supple- 
mentary and dramatic work came in the two great exhibitions 
given under Mr. Heath's leadership in district No. 2. These were 
given about 1860 and 1861, and because there was not room for 
the people in the schoolhouse, the first was given in the Freeman 
House, which was afterward burned. The new hotel was finished 
on the outside, but no partitions were yet put on the main floor 
within; so this was converted into an auditorium with ample 
stage, curtain and dressing rooms. The event was carried into 
the week following the close of school and much time given 
freely by all in preparation. People came from many miles 
away and packed every bit of available space. 

South wKST Harbor 83 

"The same event and success was repeated a year later, use 
being made of the second story of the large, three-story exten- 
sion toward the rear of the Island House owned by Deacon 
Clark. This extension gave even a larger auditorium than the 
Freeman House gave the year before. The best selections of 
the previous year were repeated with new ones added and every 
pupil from the tot of four to the big boy or girl of twenty-one 
or more, had a part. 

"One other school may be mentioned as probably the first 
term of private higher grade school ever taught on Mount Desert 
Island. It was held in the Durgain schoolhouse on the south 
side of the harbor and taught by a Mr. Brainard. Pupils came 
from Bass Harbor as well as from both sides of Southwest 
Harbor. One ambitious pupil at least, studied Latin. This was 
in 1859 or 60." 

About 1874-5 a few terms of so-called high school were 
taught at the Freeman schoolhouse, but the plan was abandoned 
because of crowded conditions, the room being needed for the 
younger children. 

On October 14, 1875, a correspondent writes for the columns 
of the Ellsworth American as follows : 

"Tremont — There are now two Free High Schools in suc- 
cessful operation here, attended by nearly one hundred 
industrious scholars. A very marked improvement can be 
seen and we say without fear of contradiction, that the 
average rank in scholarship is higher than ever it was 
before. This advantage in education we owe to our High 
Schools taught during the past year, for they have not only 
given opportunities for more study, but have incited the 
scholars of our other schools to greater diligence, thus in- 
creasing their efficiency. Tremont has never taken a step at 
so slight a cost of such enduring worth as this ; establishing 
Free High Schools. May she ever look as well to the educa- 
tion of her sons and daughters ; then, whether they live and 
labor on this beautiful isle of the sea or elsewhere, they will 
ever remember Tremont and her good schools with pleasure." 

At the time the above was written, Southwest Harbor was a 
part of the town of Tremont. 

84 Traditions and Records 

In 1888 the town raised money for three terms of Free High 
School; the fall term to be at Seal Cove, the early winter term 
at Tremont (at the schoolhouse at the head of the harbor) and 
the late winter term at Southwest Harbor. Charles E. Perkins 
of Lamoine taught this school for several years and was a very 
popular teacher. He had the ability to make each student feel 
the responsibility for lessons and his schools were remarkable 
for good discipline and well-prepared lessons. George R. Fuller, 
Esq. was Superintendent of Schools at the time of the estab- 
lishment of the Free High School. The Southwest Harbor 
terms alternated between the village and Manset schoolhouse. 

The first year that the school was held at Manset, the stu- 
dents gave a play, probably the first one given by a school in 
the town. The "High School Reporter" was published ; the first 
school paper in the history of our schools. The proceeds of 
these enterprises and of several socials and suppers went to pay 
for an encyclopedia and a dictionary ; the first pieces of educa- 
tional equipment the schools ever owned. 

Although nothing was furnished to aid in teaching, the 
students constructed material for experiments in physics and in 
chemistry, crude enough and of course very simple. Geometry, 
advanced algebra and Latin were included in the list of studies 
but there was no course laid out and no particular goal except 
to learn all that was possible. 

Other teachers of the Free High School were W. W. A. 
Heath, W. W. Rich, Byron Carter, all excellent teachers. 

The difficulties and losses of having the three terms of school 
in different localities was very apparent and as the school in- 
creased in size there was no building in the town large enough 
to accommodate it. It was still a one-room school with but one 
teacher and every year more students came to study. The in- 
terests of the widely separated parts of the town were so 
different that it was impossible to come to an agreement and 
when the building of a new schoolhouse was suggested it was 
impossible to agree upon a location. Finally, when the South- 
west Harbor citizens demanded new buildings at the village 
and at Manset, those in the western part of the town decided to 

Southwest Harbor 85 

separate themselves from Southwest Harbor. This was agreed 
upon by both sides and the town of Southwest Harbor was 
incorporated February 21, 1905. 

In 1906 the new town voted to build a new schoolhouse at 
the village and raised the sum of $4500 to do so. This sum 
included the purchase of additional land. The old building stood 
close to the main road and had but little land surrounding it, 
and the new one was to be set farther back with a playground 
in front of it. The old building was sold to George Harmon 
and moved to the lot south of the school lot where it is now 
used for stores and apartments. 

Arthur T. Richardson was the architect of the new building 
and Henry Tracy, the builder. Additions have been made from 
time to time, more land purchased, the south wing added and 
heating plant established. 

The primary building was built in 1917, costing, with the 
land $5,037.51. 

The new building was dedicated in 1908 with appropriate 
ceremonies. Tribute was paid to those who had studied in the 
old building and gone out to do good work in the world, to 
those faithful teachers who had served there and to the honored 
place the old schoolhouse had held in the community. 

In the autumn of 1908 the first certified high school in the 
town was opened with forty-eight students and a yoimg man 
by the name of Edwards as principal and Miss Annie Holmes, 
(Mrs. Harry Rice) as assistant. The establishment of the school 
was due to the efforts of Dr. G. A. Neal who had been superin- 
tendent for several years and Seth W. Norwood, who was prac- 
ticing law in the village. Mr. Edwards was obliged to resign in 
a few months because of ill health and the first four years of 
the school saw a new principal each year. But in spite of these 
difficulties a class of twelve was graduated in 1912. Since that 
time the school has steadily increased in numbers and efficiency, 
about half the students at present coming from Tremont and 
many from the adjacent islands. Several of the principals have 
been with the school for a number of years and Winfred E. 
Clark served as superintendent of the schools of Mount Desert, 
Cranberry Isles, Tremont and Southwest Harbor from 1917 until 

86 Traditions and Records 

his death in 1937. A good percentage of the graduates attend 
higher institutions of learning and do credit to our high school.* 

In 1934 in accordance with a plan offered by the authorities 
of Acadia National Park and the CCC camp at Long Pond, the 
town raised a sum of money to purchase materials for the 
grading and planting of the school lot and the Village Green and 
this work was done by the men of the camp under direction of 
the Park landscape architects. 

The first schoolhouse at Manset was built on the lot between 
the church and the house now owned and occupied by Fred 
Lawton. It had a floor that slanted from the back to the front 
so that the teacher might have a better view of the pupils and 
so that if a pupil dropped anything it would roll to the front of 
the room. 

It was about 1860 when the present school lot was purchased 
and a new house built. This was a one-room building with home- 
made desks and benches, wooden blackboards and furnished as 
were all the schoolhouses of that period, with a desk and chair 
for the teacher, a broom, sometimes a dustpan and sometimes a 
pail and dipper for drinking water. This served the purposes 
of learning imtil 1901 when the present two-room building was 

The first schoolhouse is now serving as a bam on the prop- 
erty of George Ward where part of the original plaster and 
woodwork may be seen. The second building serves as a barn 
on the property of Mrs. Eldora Ward. 

The first schoolhouse at Seawall stood about opposite the 
Cope property. The present one was built in 1900 and Sarah 
Carroll (Mrs. Wilford H. Kittredge) taught the first school in it. 

All these schoolhouses were used for community purposes 
in many ways. Miss Mary A. Carroll, a teacher for more than 
fifty years, taught writing schools in them all, and there were 
singing schools by travelling teachers, lyceums where many 
questions were skillfully debated, spelling schools and spelling 
bees where he or she who "spelled down" all the others held an 
enviable position. 

• In 1923 the first award of the Lurvey medal gave the honor to Helen 
"Wooster and every year since then it has been presented to the out- 
standing pupil in the graduating- class who has done most for the 
school in scholarship, deportment and school spirit. This medal is of 
gold, suitably inscribed and is the gift of Freeman J. Lurvey of 
Somerville, Mass., a former resident of Southwest Harbor. 

Southwest Harbor 87 

And while on the subject of education for the young we must 
not forget the schools for dancing taught by G. D. Atherton of 
Beech Hill at Tremont and Centennial Halls. Mr. Atherton 
played the violin and with the assistance of some one at the 
organ, furnished music for the school. He carefully instructed 
each pupil in the intricacies of the waltz, the schottishe and the 
polka and in the decorum of the ballroom. His schools were 
always popular and well conducted and are pleasant places in 
the memory of those who attended them. 

Of the teachers of the early days tribute should be paid to 
W. W. A. Heath of Seal Cove, successful and popular with his 
pupils, to Willard W. Rich, a remarkable mathematician and a 
bom instructor, quick to adopt new methods, kind-hearted and 
delighting in his school work, to Miss Mary A. Carroll, who 
was among the first to take up the teaching of phonetic reading 
and who spent freely of her money in the days when text-books 
and supplies were furnished by the pupils, to give every child 
a book and materials with which to work. She taught the Spen- 
cerian method of writing and was herself a fine writer. She 
taught in many places in different parts of Maine and also in 
Massachusetts. The last of her teaching was at the lighthouses 
on the islands along the coast; at Baker's Island, Duck Island 
and others. 

Byron Carter taught many terms of school in this vicinity. 
A gentleman of the old school, he had a strong influence for 
good over his pupils who had a high respect for him and his 
ways. Mr. and Mrs. B. T. Atherton of Somesville both taught 
many terms of school in this town and were highly esteemed. 

Mrs. A. M. Lawton taught singing schools at the village 
which were very popular. She had a beautiful contralto voice 
and led the singing in church for many years. Arthur T. Rich- 
ardson also served as teacher and as superintendent of schools 
as did also George R. Fuller. 

From the schools of Southwest Harbor, even from the 
earliest days, have gone out men and women who have made 
good in many walks of life ; as doctors, lawyers, teachers, theo- 
logians, editors, business administrators, captains who sailed 
their ships on many seas and as men skilled in their trades and 

88 Traditions and Records 

doing honest work for honest pay. They have travelled far into 
all the countries of the world in many capacities and today, any 
news of the little village of Southwest Harbor on Mount Desert 
Island is read in many lands by those whose early education 
began in the schools of our town. 

Monday morning, December 6, 1937, the work of excavating 
for the foundation of a new high school building on the South- 
west Harbor village school lot was begun. 

Students attending high school at Southwest Harbor in 1889. 

The school was held that winter in the schoolhouse at Manset. 

Norah King Herbert Stanley 

Marietta Stanley Robie Norwood 

Susie Haynes Everett Stanley 

Nancy King Albert Staples 

Helen Dolliver Charlie Freeman 

Nellie Spurling Isaac Stanley 

Frances King Fred Moore 

Jennie Dolliver Stephen Harmon 

Hattie Milan Everton Gott 

Neva Moore George Harmon 

May DriscoU Eugene Torrey 

Maud Mason Thomas Stanley 

Daniel Handy James Whitmore 

Nellie Mayo Orrin Milan 

Henry Teague Mary King 

Cathie Freeman Lulu Mayo 

Ned Clark Josie Battis 

George Parker Mary Morris 

Joseph Harmon Vincie Torrey 

Nellie Carroll Verney King 

Fred Handy Lowell Hodgkins 
Levi Torrey 


The first settlers of Mount Desert Island were attracted to 
the region because of the abundance of fish in the nearby waters 
and the fine growth of timber on the island. Remarkable tales 
are told of the size of the virgin pine trees that were growing 
here when white men first visited the place. And Abram Somes, 
a cooper and first permanent settler of the island, knew some- 
thing of lumbering and recognized the excellent site for a saw 
mill, which decided for him the place of settlement at Somes- 
ville where his descendants carried on for many years the busi- 
ness begun by their ancestor. 

Southwest Harbor 89 

The Somes family had several kinds of mills on their stream. 
A grist mill ground the grain for the settlers all over the island 
for some time; a saw mill provided them with boards for their 
modest homes and a shingle mill turned out the necessary 
covering for the roof. A stave mill produced material for the 
barrels and casks in which fish were shipped and many a ship 
load of staves went to other ports from the Somes mills. Later 
the Heath family had a grist and saw mill on their stream at 
Seal Cove and Leonard Holmes had one at the Mill Dam in 
Southwest Harbor. There were mills at the head of Somes 
Sound and at Duck Brook near Bar Harbor and at several 
other places. 

Lumber was shipped in quantities. The getting out of ship 
timber was a flourishing industry for many years and this 
timber was shipped as well as used in the numerous ship yards 
of Mount Desert. 

The ship yards employed many men, and craft of many kinds 
were launched — sloops, fishing schooners, coasting vessels, three- 
masted vessels and brigs. The Somes yards were busy places as 
were also those of Deacon H. H. Clark at Southwest Harbor, 
Durgain's at the south side of the harbor, Eaton Clark's at the 
head of Bass Harbor and others. Timothy Mason built a small 
vessel on his place at Oak Hill and hauled it to the launching 
place by oxen. 

There were several brickyards on the island. Deacon Clark 
made bricks from clay on his land and between the houses of 
Richard Carroll and F. A. Birlem on the Clark Point Road the 
depression from which the clay was taken may yet be seen. The 
Fernalds had a brickyard on their place taking the clay from 
north of the bridge on the road leading to Femald Point. There 
were other yards on the western side of the island, but the in- 
dustry was not long followed. 

There was a kiln for the making of charcoal to the west of 
the Jacob Lurvey place and a road in that vicinity is still spoken 
of as "the coal kiln road." 

Fishing was a major occupation from earliest days. Salted, 
dried and smoked fish were taken to Boston to be sold in vessel 
loads. Everybody who had land bordering on the shore had a 

90 Traditions and Records 

smoke house where herring were cured for market. Often 
several men owned a smoke house together. About the middle of 
April a fleet of small vessels would leave for the Magdalen 
Islands to bring back herring. The fish were heavily salted and 
were taken out of the vessel and put in what were called 
"soakers"; large, square boxes about ten by fifteen feet, with 
holes bored all over them. They were fastened securely, then 
thrown overboard and towed to the shore where they were well 
shaken to get the scales off. Then the fish were strung on sticks 
and hung in the smoke houses over fires built on the ground. 
It would take weeks to smoke them thoroughly and sometime in 
September the herring were boxed and sent away. 

The making of these "herring sticks" was work for old men, 
who could do that when they were no longer able to follow the 
sea. The stringing was often done by girls and women. 

Porgies or "pogies" as they were usually called are a fish 
resembling a shad and they were once very abundant in this 
vicinity. Many men made a business of catching them in nets. 
The fish were cooked in large iron kettles, then pitched into vats 
which hung in a wooden frame. A cover fitted inside this vat, 
arranged so that it could be pressed down by means of a jack- 
screw, and the oil pressed out of the fish. This oil was readily 
sold to be used as paint oil and for various purposes. The bones, 
scales, etc. left after the oil was pressed out made excellent 
fertilizer. Porgy boats went out of the harbors in great numbers 
and the fish were soon either all caught or frightened away as 
they are now almost unknown. 

Lobsters were canned at Southwest Harbor for many years. 
The canning of beef was carried on for a few years, but the 
supply of cattle being less than was required, the company took 
up the canning of lobsters. At present the canning of sardines, 
(small herring) is one of the principal fish industries. 

Allen J. Lawler canned baked beans and clams at his small 
factory for several years, and William Lawton canned clams. 

The mining craze of the late seventies was felt at Mount 
Desert and several kinds of minerals found, but in such small 
quantities that their extraction was not profitable. The people 
learned a good deal about metals and minerals at that time and 

Southwest Harbor 91 

almost every home had its collection of pieces of different kinds 
of rock, labelled with its name and where found. 

Many men followed the sea as "deep water men" ; going in 
ships to all ports of the world. Others engaged in the coasting 
trade and carried cargoes to many American ports as well as the 
West Indies and South America. 

There were several cooper shops in the different settlements. 
The making of sails was done here and when the new ships built 
in Mount Desert yards sailed out on their first voyages, they 
wore a set of sails made in the home town. 

At Somesville several shoemakers were employed in the 
making of shoes. A. C. Femald had a shop where coffins were 
made at his home on Sutton Island, but afterwards moved to 
Somesville where he carried on the business. John D. Lurvey 
also made coffins at Southwest Harbor. 

Clothing was made mostly by the women, but in the very 
early days a tailor used to come to the villages occasionally and 
went from house to house plying his trade. One inconvenience 
of his visits was that he insisted on sitting on the family dining 
table to do his work. The reason for this may be easily imagined 
in a house where the family life went on in one room, when the 
fireplace furnished heat as well as cooking facilities and when 
large families of children were found in most homes. Where 
else could the tailor and his tools be free from cold drafts and 
out of the reach of little meddlesome hands ? Sometimes a shoe- 
maker came to the house and made shoes for all the family. 
William Lawler and J. B. Mason had their shoemaking shops 
in their homes at Southwest Harbor. 

In the eighties and nineties Capt. William R. Keene built 
several small steamboats which he commanded, taking parties 
out to sea or out among the islands and up Somes Sound. 

The quarrying of granite at Hall Quarry occupied many men 
for many years and buildings in many of the large cities of our 
country have Some Sound granite in their composition. The 
mint at Philadelphia and several buildings at Washington, D. C, 
are among those built with granite from Mount Desert. There 
was a large industry in granite at Black Island and a consider- 
able village built up there which is now entirely deserted. 

92 Traditions and Records 

The beginning of the ice industry was in the 1880's when 
Capt. John L. Stanley constructed an artificial pond in the 
swamp at the back of his house, built an ice house, dug a well 
and prepared to sell ice and water to the fishing vessels at his 
wharf. He soon enlarged his ice house and he continued in the 
business all his life, enlarging and improving from time to time 
and carrying on an extensive fish business. Capt. Benjamin 
Robinson had a pond constructed on his property and established 
an ice delivery business in the village, which still continues^ 
being now owned by Christopher W, Lawler. 

The hotel business has been an important feature of the place 
ever since the first summer visitors were accommodated at Dea- 
con Clark's hospitable home. The Freeman House, the Qare- 
mont, the Dirigo on the north side of the harbor were built after 
the Island House had demonstrated that the taking of stunmer 
boarders was profitable, and on the south side of the harbor, the 
Ocean House and the Stanley House were popular places of 
resort. The Seawall House at Seawall proved to be too isolated 
to be popular and was open but a few seasons. Other small 
hotels and boarding houses have been opened from time to time. 

The letting of row boats was once a very profitable venture 
and several men owned sail boats which were in great demand. 
With greater prosperity, people began to demand larger boats 
and to own them themselves and with the coming of the motor 
boat, the row boat was no longer used. Capt. William Gilley and 
Capt. Robert Gott both had boats to let and also each owned a 
large sail boat in which they took parties out for deep sea fishing 
or sailing as did Capt. John T. R. Freeman. 

Sixty years ago the netting of nets was an occupation fol- 
lowed in every home where the men were fishermen. 

In the early days of the settlement of Mount Desert there 
was but little for women to do in the way of earning money. 
Home knit stockings and mittens were always in demand, but 
the prices were very low. A pair of men's mittens could be 
bought for twenty-five cents. Many women found employment in 
knitting "nippers" — a protection for men to wear on their hands 
when fishing with hand lines. Rugs and quilts were made for 
home use but it is only within recent years that they have been 
made here for sale. 

Southwest Harbor 93 

The Q)ttage Crafts Society which was carried on here a 
few years, and the Women's Exchange have done much towards 
raising the standard of taste in design and quality in execution 
of the home industries and some very fine work is offered for 
sale at the latter place every summer. 

It is not generally known that whaling was once one of the 
occupations of Mount Desert Island. The first Capt. Benjamin 
Benson, ancestor of all who bear that name in this vicinity, 
came from New Bedford, Mass., to make his home at Bass 
Harbor, bringing his whaleboat and equipment to follow his 
method of making a living. He built his "try-house" on the 
shore of his property, shipped his crew and went after the 
whales. He was successful and many barrels of oil were "tried 
out" in his building. His custom was to shoot the whales with a 
"whale gun", now in possession of one of his descendants. The 
great carcass would sink but would rise to the surface in nine 
days. At that time Capt. Benson intended to be around the spot 
where the whale sank and if luck was good, he brought in his 
kill. There is an old daguerrotype owned by one of the family, 
showing the whaleboat with its crew and Capt. Benson standing 
in the bow with his whale gun. Every whale killed was re- 
membered by a notch on the gunwale of the boat. A summer 
resident told of seeing the boat when it had fourteen notches. 

In the days of sailing ships Mount Desert furnished her 
quota of men who did their duty in every capacity on board ship 
from forecastle to cabin and in all kinds of craft from the little 
fishing vessel or coaster to the clippers which voyaged to ports 
on the other side of the world. Men spoke familiarly of foreign 
cities and London, Hamburg, Gibralter, Melbourne, Shanghai, 
Canton and Calcutta were places often visited by the "deep water 

The coasters knew well all the cities on the Atlantic shores, 
many had rounded the Horn and could tell stories of happenings 
in the Pacific coast cities of South America and there were those 
who took part in the exciting days of the discovery of gold in 

In the days of mackerel fishing Southwest Harbor was often 
fairly crowded with vessels during a "fog mull" and care had to 

94 Traditions and Records 

be taken in anchoring to insure room enough for each vessel 
to swing at her moorings. 

Steam displaced the sailing ships, fishing is done from motor 
boats and now gasoline and good roads have put the steamboats 
out of commission and the harbor waters are seldom ruffled by 
anything but small fishing craft and pleasure boats. 


Perhaps the Indian war-whoop may have sounded from the 
hills of Mount Desert, but if so, they left no record. The Indians 
who were here when white men came were friendly and we know 
of no difficulty between the settlers and the dusky children of 
the forest. In the earliest days Mount Desert men who belonged 
to the militia were summoned more than once to join a company 
to go to the settlements eastward to quell Indian troubles, but 
no legend of Indian fights here has come down to us. 

The destruction of the Jesuit settlement of St. Sauveur by 
the English in 1613 is the first time to our knowledge when the 
roar of war guns echoed from the hills to the north of the peace- 
ful harbor and that blood was shed in defense of the land. 

The pirate Dixie Bull and also William Kidd are said to have 
ranged the Maine coast and sought refuge in the harbors of the 
Mount Desert region. Stories of hidden treasure have been told 
and considerable searching has been done in and around Mount 
Desert. Some few discoveries are said to have been made, but 
none of any great value. 

In Charles Bradbury's History of Kennebunk, published in 
1837, he says that on February 14, 1746, a crew of men from 
Arundel (Kennebunk), on their way to Annapolis, Nova Scotia, 
to fight the French, were cast away on Mount Desert. "Capt. 
Perkins commanded the company. It was reported by the sur- 
vivors that the captain, in order to secure his own safety, secured 
down the hatches after the vessel struck and left the soldiers to 
perish miserably in confinement. There is some obscurity about 
this story and one John Walker was prosecuted by the person 
implicated for circulating the story, but the result of the suit 
is not known." 

Southwest Harbor 95 

During the Revolutionary War enemy ships ranged the coast 
of Maine and often entered harbors to pillage and bum. 

John Manchester was at Manchester's Point, Northeast Har- 
bor, as early as 1775. An English ship entered the harbor and 
anchored. Then a boat-load of men came ashore and made a 
raid on the Manchester home. Mr. Manchester was in the woods 
hunting for game. The soldiers took the oxen and cows, drove 
them down on the shore and there killed them, cut them up and 
took the meat on board the ship. Then they entered the house 
and took all the eatables they could find, potatoes and other 
vegetables and all that was provided for the coming winter. 
Then they destroyed all the cooking utensils and told the mother 
of the family that "they could starve now." Then they sailed 

However, one young cow was wandering off in the forest and 
so escaped the marauders and the father was fortunate in having 
his gun with him so did not lose that. He was lucky enough to 
shoot a moose soon after this raid and so replenished his store 
of meat. 

At Pretty Marsh some men were shingling a house when 
they sighted a war ship approaching. She anchored and a boat 
put off to row ashore. The few settlers were terrified, but one 
valiant woman pointed out that men could fire on the soldiers 
from the shelter of the roof which was being shingled and on 
which staging was set up, and that the women could get on the 
roof and aid in loading the guns. She said the settlement would 
starve to death if the soldiers took all their supplies, which of 
course were what they were after, and they might as well try to 
defend themselves and their property. Encouraged by her words 
the men took their places on the roof, guns in hand. They were 
expert marksmen, experienced in bringing down seabirds on the 
wing and they opened fire as soon as the boat came within range. 
Not knowing how many men might be in ambush well armed, 
the boat soon turned back and the settlers were free to go on 
with their shingling. 

There was a British raid at Naskeag on July 20, 1778, and 
the Mount Desert settlers were enraged when they were told that 
the settlers of that place had urged that the marauders leave 

96 Traditions and Records 

them alone and go to Mount Desert where they would be richly 

It is said that during this time a small vessel was pursued by 
a larger one and to escape capture and its consequences, the 
captain steered his craft into a small inlet on the southern shore 
of Mount Desert, ever since known as Ship Harbor. The crew 
escaped to the woods and the larger ship could not follow her 
prey, so sailed away. The tide was unusually high when the 
little ship went into the "harbor." It was impossible to get her 
out again so she slowly decayed in her place of refuge. People 
are now living who have looked down into the clear water and 
seen her timbers lying on the bottom. Dudley Dolliver has a 
cannon ball which was found in that vicinity, doubtless fired 
at the escaped prey by her pursuer. 

In the graveyard back of the white church at Manset is the 
grave of Jonathan Brown, who was a sailor on the flagship of 
Paul Jones in his famous encounter with the English ships off 
Flamborough Head on the east coast of England in 1779. 

James Whitmore has the musket which was carried in the 
Revolutionary War by his great-great grandfather, Joseph 
Whitmore and there are many other relics of that time in the 
homes of the town. 

In "The Founding of New England" James Truslow Adams 
tells us that "In July 1814 Sir Thomas Hardy sailed from Hali- 
fax with a formidable force for land operations and took pos- 
session of a considerable extent of the Maine coast." 

The coast and river towns suffered exceedingly from the 
depredations of this fleet. Bangor, which was a small village 
at the time, was treated with great severity by the intruders. 

One day in August, 1814, Jonathan Rich and his son John 
were fishing in a small boat outside Duck Island. They saw a 
ship approaching and were hailed and told to come aboard. Mr. 
Rich did as he was told and the commander explained that the 
ship was Her Majesty's ship the Tenedos and wanted Rich to 
stand pilot. A good price was offered, but the loyal American 
declined to serve. They bought some of his fish and the boy 
John had time to examine the guns and count them. 

The Tenedos made her way in by sounding and anchored in 
the channel between Sutton and Bear Islands. 

Southwest Harbor 97 

At this time two small vessels were hauled up in the Mill 
Pond at Norwood's Cove ; one, "Four Sisters" belonging to Capt. 
Benjamin Spurling of Cranberry Island and it is supposed that 
an enemy of Capt. Spurling reported this to the commander of 
the English ship who was out to seize and destroy all the 
American shipping possible. The vessels had been hauled up 
close to the shore and their masts and rigging concealed with 
branches of trees so they would hardly be noticed. 

The commander sent a message to Capt. Spurling's house 
demanding $350 or the vessel would be burned. Capt. Spurling 
asked for a little time in which to raise the money, which was 
granted; but, instead of doing so he sent his five sons, Robert, 
Thomas, William, Enoch and Samuel to raise the militia and at 
night he informed the officers that the bond could not be met. 

In the early morning, two barges were manned by the Tene- 
dos, the larger containing sixty men and a twelve pound swivel. 
In this boat Capt. Spurling was obliged to go. The smaller boat 
contained forty men and a six pounder. 

Peter and Timothy Smallidge were rafting some logs up the 
Sound to the mill. They were intercepted, the logs cut adrift 
and the men taken on board the Tenedos as prisoners of war. 
They were liberated some hours later before the ship sailed 

Meanwhile the Spurling sons had rowed to Southwest Harbor 
and given the alarm. The men of the settlement gathered as 
one man to give all possible aid against injustice. There was a 
limited amount of ammunition to be had. Andrew Herrick, a 
strong and able man, set out in a small boat from the western 
shore of the island to row to Castine for a supply of ammunition 
and possible aid from the settlements along the shores. 

A messenger was dispatched through the woods on horseback 
to Lieut. Col. John Black of Ellsworth, who commanded the 
militia. Other swift-footed runners carried the alarm to all the 
settlements on the southern and western shores and the response 
was immediate. 

There was no time to lose and the twenty or thirty men of 
the settlement of Southwest Harbor gathered at the Back Shore 
of Clark's Point where they lay in ambush. To get to the 

98 Traditions and Rj^cords 

vessels the enemy must pass through a narrow passage of water 
directly under the bluffs where the men were hiding behind the 
thick trees. Capt. Spurling who had been told that he should 
"stand and watch his ships burn", warned the soldiers not to go 
too near the shore, saying that he had five sons in those woods 
who could shoot a duck on the wing. 

As the boat neared the shore toward the cove, Robert Spurl- 
ing hailed from the woods, warning them not to come too near, 
but got an insulting answer. "I'd fire into you if my father 
wasn't there," cried he. 

"Never mind me, Rob" shouted the old man, "Fire away, fire 
away, I tell you. Give these blasted Britishers hell." 

The men on shore hesitated no longer, especially as at this 
remark one of the soldiers pulled the old man backwards and he 
fell into the bottom of the boat. 

The son fired first and his comrades in ambush followed his 
example. The smoke rose white above the trees on the shore as 
shot after shot was fired into the boat, by men who were expert 
marksmen, trained to shoot from a rocking boat on the waves 
and seldom miss. 

The boats returned the fire hastily and at random and with- 
drew with their dead and wounded men. 

Two Moore boys from Sutton Island, sons of William Moore, 
who had gone off to the ship to sell raspberries, said that seven 
dead and a number of wounded men were brought to the ship 
and hoisted aboard. On the American side the only wound 
was that Captain Samuel Hadlock of Little Cranberry had two 
fingers grazed by a bullet. Isaac Lurvey, for many years was 
able to point out the tree behind which he stood, a lad of 
eighteen. Several bullets were embedded in the tree. The Heath 
family of Seal Cove had in their possession a six pound cannon 
ball picked up just after the battle by William Heath, Ensign of 
the Independent company. Several other families in the locality 
had such relics, but they have been forgotten and lost. 

Capt. Spurling was released soon after getting back to the 
ship and the Tenedos sailed out of the harbor. 

Several interesting anecdotes were told of happenings during 
this skirmish. 

Southwest Harbor 99 

Jacob Lurvey, a veteran of the Revolution, was living on 
what is now the Worcester farm on the Somesville Road. He 
had been sick in bed for some time and when the alarm was 
given, his son Isaac took the one musket and rushed away with 
it to the scene of action. Toward morning the father got up and 
began to dress. His wife urged him to remain in bed saying, 
"You, a sick man can do nothing. What can you do without 
your musket? Isaac's got that." "I am going," was the reply. 
"By this time some of our men have been killed or wounded and 
there will be a musket for me" and away he went. 

Old John Richardson, another Revolutionary Veteran, lived 
on Beech Hill. He was entirely deaf, but he heard the summons 
but did not understand where the men were to assemble and so 
came walking down the slope on the north side of the cove in 
the midst of the action in full view of the British in their barge. 

His neighbors called to him to come around the other way 
so as not to expose himself, but he could not hear them and ap- 
parently had no fear for from behind a rock he calmly loaded 
and fired at the enemy who sent a charge from a gun to an- 
nihilate him, but when the dust and turf and stones cleared away, 
brave old John was loading and firing as if nothing had hap- 

During the firing the British caught sight of a man coming 
up from the Point with a bag full of bullets over his shoulder. 
It was Capt. Nathan Clark. They fired at him but missed the 
mark. "Better grease your damn old muzzles and try again," 
he shouted. 

As the boats turned to go back to the ship the sharp eyes 
of the ambushed men noted that only five men were at the oars 
instead of twelve. 

Mrs. Comfort Fernald watched the battle from her home 
on Fernald Point. 

Mrs. Hannah Lurvey, wife of Jacob, heard the firing that 
morning as she was milking her cow. 

The militia under Col. Black arrived just too late to be of 
any service, having marched the twenty miles from Ellsworth 
during the night. 

100 Traditions and Records 

So runs the story of the Battle of Norwood's Cove as it has 
been handed down through the years from those who had a part 
in it. Now for the British side of the same story: 

During the summer of 1936 Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Foote were 
travelling in Europe and while in London they went to the 
British War Office and in the Department of Public Records, 
copied the log of the Tenedos with the following record of her 
actions during the month of July and part of August when she 
was cruising along the coast of Maine. The record was not easy 
to follow as Capt. Hyde Parker's handwriting was not of the 
plainest and his spelling was his own, but it was learned that 
the Tenedos left Monhegan Island on August 4, 1814, and sailed 
down the coast, sighting Long Island at midnight, August 5th. 
By the evening of the sixth she had made up apparently through 
the Western Way into the inner bay and anchored off North 
East Harbor. She then began to get water, sending all her 
boats ashore. The next day, the seventh and the following one, 
the eighth, the watering of the ship continued. Wood was 
brought on board. There is no record of any open show of 
hostility on the part of the inhabitants of the islands. 

Following is the log exactly as written or as near as could 
be made out: 
Aug. 8th. "Received on board 4 live Oxen weighing 1650 

lbs. when alive and 304 lbs. of potatoes sent a boat for 

sand. Completed water to 96 Tons 5.30 in all boats." 

Aug. 9th. "Fresh breezes and hasey with rain at 6 o'clock 

obs'd a schooner enter the Harbor fired a Shot at her and 
brought her too she proved to be from Eastport bound to Port- 
land with passengers by pass from Sir S Hardy allowed her 
to procede." 
Aug. 10th. "Moderate and hasey with small rain at 4 o'clock 
Ditto W (weather?) out Barge and cutter and sent them up 
the Harbor Manned and Arm'd 7 (o'clock) Boats returned 
John Peterson(s) and James Pickard(m) being severely 
wounded and Thos Hughes (s) slightly by a party of Militia 

Noon Light Breezes and fine (etc) Employed setting up 

Foretopmast and Top Gallant rigging." 
Aug. 11th. The ship weighed anchor and left the waters of Mt 
Desert apparently the way she had come. 

Southwest Harbor 101 

The "s" after Peterson's name seems to mean sailor, while 
the "m" marine. There is no record that either Peterson or 
Pickard died of their wounds. After the names and details 
about the various members of the crew in the Muster Book for 
that period, July-August, 1814, there is nothing to show that 
anything had happened to them. After James Pickard, Lieut., is 
the phrase "Discharged May 12, 1814 Invalided per scurvy." 
But this dates before the skirmish. Mr. Foote followed the log 
and the Muster Book for a month or more without finding any 
further record of these men, so it would seem that they did not 
die of their wounds received in the "Battle of Norwood's Cove." 

Capt. Parker did not note in his log that the oxen and 
potatoes which he took on board were part of a ransom paid by a 
Cranberry Island man in exchange for a promise that his little 
fishing vessel with which he earned his living, would not be 
burned. The local story claimed that the two boys who were 
selling raspberries to the sailors on the Tenedos at the time the 
Barge and cutter returned from their conflict with the Militia, 
saw seven lifeless bodies hoisted from the boats to the ship. 
To their astonished and terrified eyes, three were easily magni- 
fied to seven. Otherwise, the story as handed down by the local 
residents agrees with the logbook of Capt. Hyde Parker. 

"The weakest ink is stronger than the longest memory" says 
the Chinese proverb. 

Man-of-War Brook on the western shore of Somes Sound 
is so called because warships of early days used to fill their water 
casks at that clear, cold stream. 

The late Perry W. Richardson of McKinley village, Tremont, 
had the following ancient and suggestive writing found among 
the papers of his grandfather, the late Thomas Richardson, 
first settler in that locality and a man prominent in the affairs 
of the Island and one who served on many important committees. 

Castine 10 Septr. 1814 

The submission of the Inhabitants of Mount Desert having 
been accepted and protection promised them, they are not to be 
molested either in their persons or property, so long as they 

102 Traditions and Records 

behave themselves peaceably and quietly and commit no acts 
of Hostility against the British Forces. 

Edw. Griffith, Rear Admiral, 


To the respective Captains and Commanders of His Maj.'s 
Ships and Vessels. 

A true copy Davis Wasgatt 

Attest: William Heath 

Com. of Mount Desert 

Several men of Mount Desert Island were captured during 
the 1812 war and confined in Dartmoor prison. 

Men from Mount Desert Island were among those who 
marched the length of the State in 1839 to defend the northern 
boundary, which was settled in 1842 by the Webster-Ashburton 
treaty with no bloodshed. Francis Young, Gilbert Gilley and 
Samuel Lurvey were among them. 

Ninety-two Mount Desert Island men came back from the 
Civil War and founded the James M. Parker Post G.A.R. at 
Somesville. On Dec. 27, 1935, Dennis J. Haley, the last survivor 
of that group, presented the stand of colors, the gavel and the 
Post Album to those who will care for them in the years to come. 

In 1898 many young men from Mount Desert Island were 
enrolled in the ranks of the War against Spain and the roster 
of the World War carries the names of men from the four towns 
of the Island. Some sleep in Flanders Fields and others have 
been brought back to lie in the little graveyards in the villages 
where they were bom and spent their childhood. 

The Eugene M. Norwood square at the junction of the Seal 
Cove and Main Roads is a memorial to the boy whose home 
was close by that square and who was killed in action in France, 
October 26, 1918. 


When Mount Desert Island was first settled and for some 
years after, the nearest post office was at Ellsworth. On April 
4, 1814, a petition was circulated "for the mail to come on the 
Isle of Mount Desert on the expense of Government." 

Southwest Harbor 103 

The earliest record of mail service available is a contract 
dated October 16, 1820 with Josiah Paine of Portland and 
Alexander Rice of Kittery to carry the mail from Ellsworth to 
Mount Desert once a week on Thursdays. This contract was 
made for four years, beginning January 21, 1821 and ending 
December 31, 1824. 

Anderson Hopkins of Trenton was the first mail carrier on 
the Island. There was no bridge across the Narrows until 1837, 
so he had to ford the waters. The first mailbag brought on to 
the Island is now in possession of the Somesville Museum and 
can be seen at their building. 

The first post office on Mount Desert Island was kept by 
John Somes in a small building on the site of one of the three 
store buildings that now stand in the village of Somesville. The 
first building was later moved to the rear and a new front built. 
Thus the first post office is now a part of the rear of that 

The office at first served the whole island. Then an office was 
established at Eden and the Somesville office was used by South- 
west Harbor and all the western side of the island until in the 
early 1830's a post office was established in the David King 
house at what is now Manset and this served Southwest and 
Bass Harbors and the outlying islands. In 1836, mail was car- 
ried from the Narrows to Southwest Harbor and back one trip 
a week for fifty dollars a year. 

Manset was then Southwest Harbor and the business of the 
town was carried on there. The Custom House was in the old 
Ward house south of the schoolhouse. Samuel Osgood and later 
Horace Durgain had a store with a large stock of goods of all 
kinds, there was a good deal of shipbuilding going on, the sail 
loft owned and operated by Albert Bartlett made the sails for 
the new ships and there was considerable traffic in fish. 

With the building of the factory at Clark Point for the can- 
ning of beef and later of lobsters, business in what is now the 
village of Southwest Harbor began to increase, summer visitors 
began to spend weeks at Deacon Clark's hospitable house and 
the post office was moved to the north side of the harbor and 

104 Traditions and Records 

kept for some time by J. T. R. Freeman in a house on the site of 
the present Park Theater. Then the Custom House was set up 
on the second floor of the building which stood on the site of the 
present A, I. Holmes cottage. D. P. Marcyes had the Custom 
House for some years, then Thomas Clark and later Thaddeus 
Somes of Mount Desert. 

When the Civil War broke out the mail was still brought to 
Southwest Harbor but once a week. A petition was sent to 
headquarters asking that a daily mail service be established and 
this was allowed. Then a number of the citizens "clubbed 
together" and took a daily paper for the war news. At mail time 
everybody assembled at the post office and one of the men would 
mount the steps leading to the Custom House and read the 
column of news relating to the war. Sometimes lists of dead, 
wounded and missing were read and a familiar name was among 
the fatalities. 

In 1869 a telegraph company was organized through the 
efforts of Deacon Clark and in 1870 the line from Southwest 
Harbor to Ellsworth was put into operation. 

The first message sent over the telegraph line from Bar 
Harbor to Bangor was "From the Mayor of Bar Harbor to the 
Mayor of Bangor ; Eden sends a telegraphic greeting to Bangor. 
Our line will be completed by Eve; but, owing to the rocky 
soil, not without A-dam. Eden, May 19, 1871" 

Abbie May Holden (afterwards Mrs. William Lawton) was 
the first telegraph operator and when she went out of town to 
live, her sister, Mrs. Phebe Holden Ross, took the position which 
she held until she went West to live ; then it was moved to Mrs. 
Lawton's house and she conducted it until the advent of the 
telephone put the telegraph office out of business. 

The Manset post office was established in 1892 and was to 
have been called Mansel ; the first English name given to Mount 
Desert Island. But through an accident or illegible handwriting 
the office was named Manset and no effort made to change it to 
the correct name. 

There was a post office at Seawall for some years, kept for a 
long time by Capt. Peter Moore in his house. It was given up 
and Rural Free Delivery took its place. Clark Hopkins was the 

Southwest Harbor 105 

first postmaster at Manset and Mrs. Susie Haynes King has had 
the office for several years. 

At Southwest Harbor after J. T. R. Freeman, Mrs. Emily 
Robinson Famsworth had the office for some time; then J. A. 
Freeman and William J. Tower held it alternately according to 
change of political administration for several terms. Then E. S. 
Thurston was appointed and held office for twelve years until 
Earll W. Gott was appointed by Franklin D. Roosevelt. 

The office has changed location with every new postmaster 
but it is now conveniently located in the Salisbury building 
which is central and it is likely to be permanently placed there. 



The first resident physician in the town of Tremont was Dr. 
William A. Spear, who came before 1844 and settled at Bass 
Harbor. He practiced for more than fifty years or until inca- 
pacitated by age. In many families he attended three generations 
and was highly respected and beloved. 

In 1880, Dr. R. J. Lemont, a graduate of the University of 
New York in the class of 1864, came to Southwest Harbor 
where he practiced for some years and then established a drug 
store which he conducted during his lifetime. 

Dr. H. E. Abbott and Dr. J. D. Phillips came about 1886; 
the former remained but a few years but Dr. Phillips is still in 
practice (1937). He is a graduate of the University of the City 
of New York in the class of 1886. Dr. Phillips has been very 
active in the business and development of Southwest Harbor. It 
was he who was responsible for the water system of the town 
and he has owned and conducted the Claremont Hotel as a 
summer hotel for a number of years. He has served his com- 
munity as representative to the State Legislature and also as 
State Senator. He has been an official of the public library for 
many years and president of the board of trustees for two 
decades. He has always been active in the Village Improvement 
Association and was its first president. In town affairs his 
advice has been excellent and his suggestions worthwhile. He 
has served as president of the Maine Medical Association. 

106 Traditions and Records 

A Dr. Staples came to Southwest Harbor about the same 
time, but remained only a few months. 

Dr. Elias C. Neal practiced in town when a young man, then 
went away, returning about 1888 and settling at Bass Harbor. 
He was in practice about ten years and died suddenly at the home 
of a patient to whom he was ministering. He was a graduate of 
the Bellevue Medical College in 1866. Dr. Neal was highly 
esteemed and his ability as a physician recognized. 

His son, Dr. George A. Neal, a graduate of Baltimore 
Medical College in the class of 1905, has been in practice here 
since his graduation and has a wide field of labor. He has 
always been actively interested in town affairs and the various 
welfare associations. He has been treasurer of the local branch 
of the Red Cross for many years, has always been a member of 
the Village Improvement Association and has served as its 
president as well as on important committees, is a member of 
the local branch of the Maine Public Health Association and 
was active in getting a public health nurse here to work in the 
schools and among the people. He was a member of the school 
board for six years and was Superintendent of schools for two 
years. For twenty-one years, Dr. Neal was secretary of the 
Hancock County Medical Association and served three terms as 
its president. He is a member of the staff of the Mount Desert 
Island Hospital at Bar Harbor and is at present (1937) secretary 
of the staff. He, as well as Dr. Phillips, has had many difficult 
experiences during the years when attempting to answer the call 
of duty to the outlying islands in winter. 

Dr. Eugene D. Tapley practiced in Tremont for a time and 
then went to Belfast where he opened a hospital. His brother. Dr. 
Thomas S. Tapley, took his place at Tremont, making his home 
at McKinley. Dr. Tapley is a graduate of the Medical Depart- 
ment of the University of Vermont in the class of 1899. He 
practiced for five years at West Auburn and came to Mount 
Desert Island in 1905. 

Dr. Raymond B. Coffin came to Southwest Harbor to begin 
the practice of medicine in the early summer of 1937. 

Dr. George W. Anderson established his dental practice at 
Manset in 1882 and for many years he had a wide circle of 

Southwest Harbor 107 

Dr. Charles E. Freeman had a dental office in the Odd 
Fellows building for a few years from 1897 but later removed 
to California. 

Dr. Phillip F. M. Gilley, a native of Southwest Harbor and a 
graduate of University of Maryland at Baltimore in the class of 
1913, practiced two years in Rockland and opened his dental 
offices here in 1915. 

The first lawyer to practice his profession in the western 
part of Mount Desert Island was E. Webster French, Esq., who 
came about 1883 to Bass Harbor where he lived for several 
years, later coming to Southwest Harbor. He was in practice in 
the town for about fifteen years. 

George R. Fuller, Esq., practiced at Center in Tremont for 
a few years after graduating from University of Maine, and 
came to Southwest Harbor to make his home in 1893 where he 
built up a wide practice. Mr. Fuller served for many years as 
first selectman and also as supervisor of schools, was always 
connected with the welfare organizations of the village and 
served his community in the State Legislature as Representative 
and as Senator. His experience as civil engineer gave him a 
valuable and thorough knowledge of property boundaries all 
over the western part of Mount Desert Island. He died during 
the summer of 1937. His son, David W. Fuller, born in South- 
west Harbor, is a practicing attorney in Bangor since completing 
his studies at University of Maine and at Harvard Law School. 

Seth W. Norwood opened a law office in Southwest Harbor 
in 1906 where he practiced for a few years and then moved to 


On reading a report of the Penobscot County Medical Asso- 
ciation in the Maine Medical Journal, my attention was called 
to an after-dinner talk by Dr. Mason on reminiscences of Bangor 
physicians prior to 1850. 

The thought came to me that so far as I knew, nothing had 
ever been said or written of the physicians of Mount Desert 
Island and so, for a few brief moments it does not seem out of 
place to give attention to some incidents in the lives of those men 

108 Traditions and Records 

who went to the assistance of the people of the island in sickness 
and distress. 

The first physician who settled on Mount Desert Island was 
Dr. Kendall Kittredge who was born at Billerica, Mass., October 
19, 1773, who commenced practice in the town of Penobscot in 
1798, and moved to Mount Desert in 1799. 

Here he had a large practice and had to travel on foot, horse- 
back or by water for many years. He was a man of strong 
personality and a successful practitioner of the medicine of the 
day in which he lived. His practice not only included this 
island but extended to Trenton, Bluehill and Surry. It was the 
custom in the last two places when his services were needed, to 
light a bonfire on a certain point and it was recognized as the 
duty of some one on the western side of Mount Desert to get the 
message to the doctor as soon as possible after seeing the blaze. 
Then by boat or on horseback he would start out for the settle- 
ment and someone would be stationed along the road or at the 
landing place on the shore to direct him to the house where he 
was needed. 

He could be seen daily on horseback travelling to the scat- 
tered homes on the island. He took a deep interest in church 
affairs and served the Congregational Church as its clerk for 
many years. His neat, plain handwriting is preserved in the 
first records of the First Congregational church at Southwest 

He was a man of considerable business ability, built several 
vessels and carried on a large farm. It is told of him that no 
matter how sick the patient was, on his arrival at the house he 
always asked for a lunch and sat down to smoke his pipe before 
seeing the sufferer and on his return he would call at some house 
along the road to have another lunch and a smoke, saying that 
it was good for his horse to have a rest. He was the beloved 
physician of high character and charitable even to his own 
injury. He raised a large family and many of his descendants 
are still living on the island. He died in 1857. The saddlebags 
which he carried for many miles are to be seen at the Mount 
Desert Museum at Somesville and the vials contain some of the 
medicines which he put there himself. 

Southwest Harbor 109 

The next man who came to minister to the sick was one Dr. 
Harvey F. Deming, a graduate of Castleton, Vermont, bom in 
Cornish, N. H., in 1809, died at Mount Desert, 1849. I am unable 
to find the exact date of his settlement on the island but it was 
sometime prior to 1830. He was a lame man. He did not have 
the extensive practice that Dr. Kittredge enjoyed, but he was a 
well educated man and a good practitioner. While he was living 
at Somesville, Dr. Moses R. Pulsifer settled in the Thomas dis- 
trict in Eden in 1830. He remained there for three or four years, 
then went to New York where he embraced the Homeopathic 
doctrine and settled in Ellsworth where he practiced for many 
years. He was of a pugnacious disposition and he and Dr. 
Deming were on the fighting line a good deal of the time while 
he lived on the island and continued the battle after settling in 
Ellsworth. A bitter strife also went on between Dr. Pulsifer 
and Dr. Peck and also with his political opponents, but he was 
a successful doctor. 

The next man to practice medicine on Mount Desert Island 
was Dr. William E. Spear who came to Tremont before 1846 and 
who practiced more than fifty years. It is not known that he 
ever received a diploma from any college, but was a druggist 
before coming to the island. That he was a man of keen per- 
ceptions and understood human nature there can be no doubt, 
for he had a long and very successful life of active work and 
showed great knowledge gained by long experience. Hardly has 
there been a man who responded to the calls of his patients at 
any and all times and through all weathers as he did. He might 
well be called an island doctor, going at all times and under all 
weather conditions to the different islands which lie to the south 
of Mount Desert in boats that were much less seaworthy than 
those we have today. Many tales have I been told of the ex- 
periences which he endured when crossing to these islands ; such 
as being wrapped in bed quilts and laid down in bottom of the 
boat and when reaching his destination finding the wrappings 
frozen to the planks. He was a small man in stature but tough 
and wiry and without fear. 

On one occasion while crossing in a heavy storm, one of the 
men who was rowing the boat remarked that "we will all go to 
Hell this time sure." The Doctor answered that he "had as 


many friends there as any of them." He told me that he had 
attended more than twenty-five hundred obstetrical cases and 
it is not known that he ever owned a set of obstetrical forceps ; 
something for us all to think of when we are over-anxious to 
use them. His patients had great faith in him and great affection 
for him. 

Dr. Emerson Googins came to Mount Desert in 1849, moving 
here from Surry where he had practiced for a while. He re- 
mained here until 1868 when Dr. R. L. Grindle came on the 

Perhaps Dr. Googins was one of the most eccentric of prac- 
titioners that we have known. He was a man of strong prejudices 
and peculiarities but an honest and faithful physician and spent 
a busy life on Mount Desert Island. His eccentricities are 
familiar to many of us. The peculiar way in which he would 
express himself and his facial expressions were at times most 
amusing. His great faith in the action of certain drugs was 
surprising. He was wont to say that with Vetram Verades he 
could regulate the heart's action to the fraction of a second and 
the caustic remarks he made were proverbial and often most 
effectual. Once when meeting Dr. King of Ellsworth on the 
street of that city accompanied by his brother, who was one of 
the Justices of the State, they bade him a hearty good morning 
and with that stiff, frozen way of his he responded coldly, "Good 
morning, boys", which must have somewhat cooled their ardor. 
He moved from Mount Desert to Ellsworth where he practiced 
many years and, I am sorry to say, died a very poor man. 

Dr. E. C. Neal, father of Dr. George A. Neal, came first to 
Tremont in 1867, remained here some two years, went west, 
returning again in 1887 and successfully practiced until he died 
in harness. Dr. Neal died at his post of duty being called to a 
confinement case where the patient was having convulsions and 
he was delivering her with instruments when he suddenly fell 
back dead from heart disease. Never has it been my lot to gaze 
upon a more tragic scene than when I entered that house, being 
hastily summoned. There lay the good Doctor on the floor dead, 
the woman on the bed just coming out of a convulsion and every- 
thing in confusion and distress. Well may a man be proud to die 
in the discharge of such duties. 

Southwest Harbor 111 

Dr. Neal served his country in the Civil War. 

Several other physicians have settled on the island from time 
to time, but these are the only ones who remained for many 
years. These men all bore excellent reputations, gave to their 
patients their very best service and died enjoying the confidence 
of all the many who had received aid from their hands. 

In closing I might remark that it is gratifying to note the 
progress of medical science and good fellowship which exists 
today in the profession on this Island and I trust that it may 
never, through any act of ours, go backward, but advance so 
that those who come after us may have bright landmarks 
whereby they may gain encouragement to do still better work 
for diseased humanity. 

(Written and read by Dr. J. D. Phillips of Southwest Harbor at a 
meeting of the Hancock County Medical Association.) 


No story of Mount Desert Island would be complete without 
recognition of the work done by Dr. Joseph D. Phillips for his 
home town, for the Island, for the County and for the State. 

He was born in Orland, Maine, on December 17, 1857, the 
son of Luther and Lavonia (Noyes) Phillips. When he was 
four years old the family moved to Hancock Point, near Mount 
Desert Ferry, where they lived on a small farm. 

His father, who was born at Castine in 1801, was descended 
from a sister of Sir William Pepperell and his great-grandfather 
was with Pepperell at the taking of Louisburg in 1745. 

Luther Phillips held town offices and represented his district 
in the Maine legislature. He was a deacon of the Baptist church 
and a very religious man, never neglecting family prayers, Bible 
reading and grace before meals. 

Lavonia Noyes was bom at Norridgewock, Maine, the same 
year that Queen Victoria came into the world and she was often 
told that she resembled that royal lady in face and character. 
She began teaching school at the age of sixteen and always read 
eagerly the books and papers that came her way. She was a 
member of the Congregational church at Ellsworth and her 
minister. Dr. Sewall Tenney, performed the ceremony which 
united Luther Phillips and Lavonia Noyes in marriage. 

112 Traditions and Records 

Both of these worthy people died in Hancock and are buried 
in the Ellsworth cemetery. 

Their son grew up on the farm, assisting in the work of the 
home, caring for the farm animals and enjoying life and its sim- 
ple pleasures until he was eighteen years old, when he made his 
first trip to the Grand Banks of Newfoundland in a fishing 
vessel. For the next four summers he followed the sea in this 
way and earned enough money to attend the Maine Central Insti- 
tute at Pittsfield, Maine, from which he graduated in 1883. His 
older brother, George, had graduated from a medical college and 
was a successful practitioner and this influenced the younger 
brother to follow the same line. 

He completed his course in 1886, graduating from the Medi- 
cal Department of the University of New York City. He spent 
one year in his brother's office and then came to Southwest Har- 
bor which ever since has been his home. 

The young doctor endured many hardships in his early prac- 
tice. The roads were almost impassable in the muddy seasons 
of spring and fall and through the deep snows of winter. The 
outlying islands had a large population at that time and Dr. 
Phillips had many hazardous journeys across stormy waters in 
winter. Before the advent of motor boats he has been marooned 
for several days on distant islands before it was considered safe 
to launch a boat in the rough seas to bring him home. He has 
many times been called to Outer Long Island, to Swan's Island 
and to Mount Desert Rock, twenty miles out at sea, besides 
many, many trips to the nearer islands, often in stormy weather 
and he never failed to heed the call for help. He has attended 
cases for twenty-eight consecutive hours with no chance for rest 
and but little time for food. 

A doctor's life such as Dr. Phillips experienced for the first 
twenty-five years of his practice was vastly different from the 
present, with good roads, automobiles and motor boats, to say 
nothing of better medical facilities. 

In 1917 Dr. Phillips was elected as Representative to the 
State legislature. He was active in securing an appropriation 
to build a free bridge connecting the Island of Mount Desert 
with the mainland in place of the old wooden toll bridge built in 
the 1830's. 

South WE^ST Harbor 113 

In 1923 and 1925 he was elected to the State Senate and in 
1930 he was one of the Presidential Electors. 

He has served as president of the Hancock County Medical 
Association and in 1927 he was honored with the presidency oi 
the Maine State Medical Association. 

In recent years he has taken time to travel to California, to 
Panama and Bermuda and to take an extended trip to European 

One of the greatest benefits brought by Dr. Phillips to South- 
west Harbor was the organization by him of the Southwest 
Harbor Water Company in 1893 which obtained the use of water 
from Long Pond and brought the supply to the town. This 
company operated successfully until 1928 when it sold its rights 
to a larger corporation. The bringing of a supply of pure water 
to the community improved the public health and marked the 
beginning of greater prosperity, as many summer cottages were 
built as soon as this necessity was assured. 

More than thirty years ago (1938) Dr. Phillips purchased the 
Qaremont Hotel from Mrs. Jesse H. Pease and has since con- 
ducted it successfully as a summer hotel. He has enlarged and 
improved it and his son, Lawrence D. Phillips, is now manager. 

Dr. Phillips has been actively interested in the Village Im- 
provement Association since its organization, has always been a 
trustee of the public library and for the past twenty-five years 
has been chairman of the Board. He was a charter member of 
the Odd Fellows lodge and has been treasurer of the order ever 
since the local lodge was established. 

His advice in town affairs has been sought for and found to 
be based on sound principles and he has often been called upon 
by his friends and acquaintances for counsel in business matters 
which has proved wise. 

He has been a trustee of the Congregational church, was in- 
strumental in forming the Larger Parish of Southwest Harbor 
and Tremont, was foremost in the affairs of the Y. M. C. A. 
when that organization functioned here, has always been con- 
nected with the Chamber of Commerce, is President of the Board 
of Trustees of the Public Library, assisted in organizing the 
Country Club and purchasing the property it now owns and has 

114 Traditions and IUcords 

always been identified with all movements for betterment of the 

Dr. Joseph D. Phillips has been for many years the leading 
citizen of Southwest Harbor, a personal friend to his towns- 
people as well as "the beloved physician." 


The Southwest Harbor Public Library had its beginning in 
1884 when Mrs. Annie Sawyer Downs gathered a number of 
discarded books from the hotels, mostly paper covered volumes, 
and placed them on a shelf in one corner of Dr. R. J. Lemont's 
drug store, which was the building now occupied by Spurling's 
Restaurant. Dr. and Mrs. Lemont acted as librarians and the 
modest collection received additions from time to time. 

Albert W. Mathews of New York was interested and contrib- 
uted books and generous checks. The books were in great de- 
mand by the people of the town and the task of looking after 
them soon became too much to be done in the store, so, in 1886 
the books were moved to the small building which stood where 
the Allen store now is and which was built by John D. Lurvey 
as a coffin shop. Here the books were housed for several years 
during which time the building was moved twice; once a few 
rods to the north of its first site and then to the corner lot where 
Thomas Lawton's Variety Store now stands. 

For many years Mrs. Lemont served as librarian. A small 
fee was charged for use of the books until money was appropri- 
ated by the town and then the books were made free. The 
Library Association was formed March 17, 1888, and the name 
was The Tremont Public Library Association as at that time 
Southwest Harbor was a part of Tremont. It was incorporated 
and Dr. R. J. Lemont was the first president and Miss Mary E. 
Redlon, daughter of Rev. Amos Redlon, the Congregational 
minister, was secretary and also librarian for a long time. 

The first committee appointed for the selection and purchase 
of books was composed of Dr. Lemont, Dr. Phillips, W. W. A. 
Heath, Mrs. J. B. Mason, Mrs. Viola E. Newman, Mrs. Julia 
Lemont, Arthur T. Richardson, Mrs. Seth W. Lurvey, Mrs. J. G. 
Parker, J. B. Mason. 

Southwest Harbor 115 

The librarians served without pay until November 1888, when 
it was voted to pay fifty cents for each half day the library was 
open. The first magazine which the library subscribed for was 
The Century and later, by the advice of Mr. Albert Mathews, 
Harper's and The Atlantic Monthly were added to the list. 

In 1893 the Association bought of Mrs. Rachel C. Allen of 
Waltham, Mass., the lot of land where the library building now 
stands. Money for this purchase was partly raised by Mrs. J. B. 
Mason through "Dollar Socials" ; the people of the town volun- 
teering to earn a dollar each, in some unusual way and then 
meeting to hear their efforts celebrated in rhyme. The sum of 
$100 was paid for the lot. 

In May of 1895, the building where the books were kept was 
sold to John C. Ralph, who wished to occupy it and the Associa- 
tion was notified that the books must be taken out. Funds had 
been slowly accumulating in the bank for the purpose of building 
a library and it was voted to borrow more and build at once as 
there was no available place for the books which could be 
secured. Mr. Ralph kindly allowed the occupation of the shop 
until the new library could be completed. 

Melvin Norwood was the lowest bidder on plans contributed 
by Prof. Eleazer Homer and he was instructed to begin work. 

The Owl Club was organized in 1894 by Miss Nellie R. Car- 
roll and it turned in $115 as the net proceeds of a fair which the 
club held that winter. This club continued for some years to 
work for the library and earned considerable money for the 
building and the purchase of books. 

The contract price for the library building was $898. The 
furnishings were purchased with funds raised by Mrs. Nathan 
Clark and Mrs. Arvilla Clark, both of whom were actively inter- 
ested in the library and served as officers until their deaths. 

The committee to arrange for the dedication of the new build- 
ing was composed of Dr. J. D. Phillips, Mrs. Nathan Clark, Mrs. 
Arvilla Clark, Mrs. O. W. Cousins and Mrs. William Mason. 

Dr. Phillips presided over the meeting giving a brief outline 
of the history of the library association, there was singing by a 
male quartette composed of Rev. Mr. Brewster, WTiitcomb Rich- 
ardson, E. L. Higgins and Galen Young, an essay on Books by 
Mrs. J. B. Mason, an address by Rev. Powesland, pastor of the 

116 Traditions and Records 

Methodist church, an essay by Miss Myra Powers on Reading, 
remarks by George R. Fuller, Esq., on the selection of books for 
the young people. 

A poem written for the occasion by Miss Nellie R. Carroll 
was read by Mrs. O. W. Cousins. Dr. Phillips then delivered 
the keys of the building to Dr. R. J. Lemont, president of the 
board of trustees, who accepted them with a few well chosen 
words. Then the company repaired to Tremont Hall across the 
way where a supper was served in honor of the occasion, the pro- 
ceeds to be used for furnishings for the library. 

Following is the dedicatory poem : 

As in the days of ancient lore 
Of tithes and mites we read, 
Which, given with a thankful heart 
From scanty store and need 

Were blessed and grew with great increase, 
And yielded richest gain, 
Till temples raised and storehouses 
Were built and filled with grain, 

So gathered we from every source 
The tithes with thankful hearts ; 
Though slow our store increased we knew 
Great things from small things start. 

By work of hands and busy brains. 
By skill and chance games too. 
By produce sold and generous gift 
Our coffers slowly grew, 

Until our dreams at last take form. 
The fruits of toil we see. 
The object sought for many days. 
No more a fantasy. 

And to our seaside village fair, 
Our country and our State, 
To Wisdom's wide and mighty power 
These walls we dedicate. 

Southwest Harbor 117 

May thoughts inscribed on pages here 
By those to honor known, 
Prove wealth to those who knowledge seek 
And brighten many a home. 

May many minds find treasure here, 
Above their daily cares. 
May wisdom's influence live and spread 
Through all the coming years. 

The wall around the library grounds was built at the sugges- 
tion of Albert Mathews and with money contributed by him. 
The building was declared free from all debt on February 6, 
1897. When Southwest Harbor was set off from Tremont, the 
name was changed to the Southwest Harbor Public Library. 

The secretary's records in 1889 show "480 books in the 
library, exclusive of 42 volumes sent by Mr. Mathews." The 
first catalogue was printed in 1893. Mr. Mathews was a most 
generous friend and the records show frequent gifts of $100 and 
more with wise suggestions as to its use. W. L. Underwood 
also gave generously of money. The summer guests often gave 
entertainments, the proceeds from which went to the library. 
Mr. and Mrs. J. B. Mason were always deeply interested in it and 
gave freely of their time and counsel for its benefit. Mrs. Carrie 
D. Phillips, Dr. and Mrs. Lemont, Mrs. Katharine Mason, Mrs. 
O. W. Cousins, Mrs. Grace Lawton Brown and George R. Fuller 
are among those whose names have been connected with the 
library from the first. Dr. J. D. Phillips has always held office 
in the Association and for many years has been president of the 
trustees. Dr. George E. Street and Mr. Charles Burke have 
given many volumes to the library. The Village Improvement 
Association has contributed large sums of money for the pur- 
chase of books as well as the general upkeep of the building and 
the town appropriates annually a sum for its use. 

The books are extensively used by the students of the high 
school for reference and reading; it is well patronized by the 
summer population and almost every family in the village takes 
out books regularly. There are about 6000 volumes on the 
shelves. This number is exclusive of the gifts of many books 

118 Traditions and Records 

from Miss Alice Fowler, Mr. and Mrs. Roger Underwood and 
Mr. and Mrs. William J. Miller. Mrs. O. W. Cousins has been 
the faithful librarian for many years. 

In 1937-8 the books were rearranged and catalogued accord- 
ing to modem methods and Miss Ruth Lawrence, a graduate of 
the Drexel Library School at Philadelphia, has been acting 
librarian and has greatly enlarged the usefulness of the library. 


The Manset Public Library was organized under the Manset 
Village Improvement Association and at the first meeting Mrs. 
E. B. Stanley, Miss Gladys Whitmore and Fred Noyes were 
chosen as a library committee. 

Mrs. Stanley presented a small building, 12 by 12 feet, for use 
as a library and the firm of J. L. Stanley and Sons gave $25 to 
help in furnishing it. The building was moved to its present 
site on the church grounds, shelves were installed for books and 
for some time it enjoyed the distinction of being the smallest 
library building in the State and perhaps in the nation. A few 
years later it was enlarged to its present dimensions. 

On July 12, 1918, the Library Association was discharged 
from the Village Improvement Association and for a time was 
under the direction of the Southwest Harbor Library. In 1921 
it became an independent organization. Mrs. Cynthia Stanley 
has been librarian since October 15, 1921. 

This library has an annual appropriation from the town and 
has had some generous gifts of books and money. 


The value of the work of the Village Improvement Associa- 
tion cannot be overestimated. It was organized July 27, 1914, 
with Dr. J. D. Phillips as president, E. A. Lawler, Dr. G. D. 
Latimer, Dr. Charles H. Cutler and Miss Mary S. Snow, vice 
presidents and George R. Fuller, Esq., secretary and treasurer. 

During the years of its existence the permanent residents 
have worked with the summer folk for the betterment of the 
village and much has been accomplished. 

Southwest Harbor 119 

The laying out of the first trails or paths to the mountain 
summits and other scenic points was done by this Association 
and much credit is due those faithful members who spent so 
much time and did so much work to accomplish the purpose. At 
first the signs for the trails were rude affairs, whittled out by 
the members when funds were low, and gradually replaced with 
better ones until recently the matter of path signs has been taken 
over by Acadia Park and gracefully designed markers uniform 
all over the island, have been placed by the Rangers. In the 
first days of the organization it did some repairing of roads — 
removing stones and filling in low places and replacing the old 
plank sidewalks with those of gravel, which later were replaced 
with cement walks by the town. 

In 1915, the sum of $300 was spent for setting shade trees 
along the village roads and these trees are now a valuable asset 
to the community as well as to property owners. The beautiful 
lindens along the High Road add greatly to the beauty of that 
part of the village. 

The work of keeping the village roads clean was one of the 
early projects, continued to the present day. The plan of bridging 
the Mill Pond originated with the Association and most of the 
cost of the work was borne by it, as has also been the repairs 
and additions since to which the property owners near the Dam 
have generously contributed also. 

A committee was appointed to suggest suitable names for the 
village roads and their choice was very satisfactory. The Asso- 
ciation had road signs made and put in place, uniform in style. 

The public library has always been one of the prime objects 
and much money has been contributed for books and furnish- 
ings. A modern dictionary and encyclopedia have been pur- 
chased as well as some furniture and a building fund for enlarg- 
ing the library has been started. 

Prizes were offered for several years for essays on local his- 
tory in the schools with most satisfactory results in arousing 
interest among the young people in the early history of the 

The first oil for the roads was purchased by the V. I. A. For 
a few seasons prizes were given for improvement in private 
grounds with good results. A guide book was issued and also 

120 Traditions and Records 

a pamphlet describing the accomplishments of the Association 
and its aspirations. During the World War a contribution was 
made to the fund of disabled soldiers. 

A baseball field was rented and put in order by the Associa- 
tion, contributions made to the Sea Coast Mission, prizes given 
for the yacht races in memory of the sailing men of Southwest 
Harbor, both past and present, a mooring placed near Acadia 
Mountain, seats placed in different parts of the village, trash 
cans purchased and cared for during the summer, and contribu- 
tions made to the fund for the District Nurse. 

The purchase of fire-fighting equipment was first agitated in 
this organization, and the excellent parking place at the entrance 
to Valley Cove was constructed by the Park authorities in re- 
sponse to an appeal by a committee from the V. I. A. 

The year of the George Washington bi-centennial the V. I. A. 
purchased six elm trees which were set on the grounds of the 
schoolhouses in memory of the occasion. 

The idea of the Village Green originated with the Village 
Improvement Association and the money for the first payment 
on the land was raised by the society. 

Entertainments of choice quality have been brought to the 
village by the society. A concert by the Boston Symphony 
Orchestra was given through the interest of one of the summer 
resident members and many other concerts and recitals have 
been brought to the community as well as many entertainments 
of varying kinds that have been given for the benefit of the 
Village Improvement Association. 

As the years have passed, many of the duties undertaken in 
earlier days have been taken over by the town or the Park 
authorities and at present the public library is the chief interest 
with some money and attention being given to the paths and 
trails as well as keeping clean the village roads. Many of those 
who were among the organizers have worked faithfully all the 
years for the benefit and the beautification of the village, with 
results whose value cannot be counted. Mr. George R. Fuller 
served the Association as treasurer from its organization to the 
summer of 1936 when his resignation was accepted with deep 
regret and with appreciation of the careful and accurate work 
which he had done. 

SouTHw^T Harbor 121 


Tremont Lodge, No. 17 , F. and A. M., was organized at 
Southwest Harbor in 1854 and was the first Masonic lodge on 
Mount Desert Island. 

In March of 1854, William Heath and Dr. W. A. Spear hap- 
pened to meet at the store of the former and discussed the possi- 
bility of forming a lodge in the town. A number of the sea- 
faring men were Masons and they were consulted, the lodge at 
Ellsworth conferred with, and on June 12, 1854, a dispensation 
was granted and the first meeting held in the hall over Freeman's 
store (the building which stood on the site of the A. I. Holmes 
cottage at the village corner), on August 9, 1854. Fourteen new 
members were initiated during the first year. 

As the meeting place was too small for convenience, Andrew 
Tarr built a hall connected with his residence, rented it to the 
Masons and it was dedicated October 21, 1858, with appropriate 
ceremonies and a supper. 

This lodge had jurisdiction over all of Mount Desert, Bart- 
lett's Island, Cranberry Isles, Swan Island, Gott's Island and 

On January 3, 1867, the Masons at Somesville applied for the 
privilege of forming a lodge of their own and on March 2, 1882, 
the Bar Harbor lodge was formed. 

Having outgrown in numbers the accommodations at the Tarr 
hall, on February 10, 1881, it was voted to buy the building in 
the village, now known as Masonic Hall. Jacob W. Carroll, 
Levi Lurvey and Capt. Jacob S. Mayo were appointed as a com- 
mittee to arrange for the purchase, and a public installation of 
officers was held in the new quarters on February 20, 1883. 

Mount Mansell Chapter of Royal Arch Masons was organized 
December 14, 1913. The Order of the Eastern Star was organ- 
ized in 1897. 

The Odd Fellows lodge was organized in Southwest Harbor 
May 7, 1895, with twenty-two charter members. E. A. Lawler 
was the first Noble Grand. He had joined the order in Massa- 
chusetts and A. E. Farnsworth, Dr. J. D. Phillips, George R. 
Fuller and Alvah Rich joined at Bar Harbor to make the neces- 
sary number for the formation of the new lodge. In 1897 the 

122 Traditions and Records 

Odd Fellows' building was erected and in 1922 it was destroyed 
by fire. It was rebuilt the following- year. 

The Rebekah lodge was formed soon after the Odd Fellows. 

Good Templar Lodges flourished in the 1880's and Ocean 
Echo lodge was formed at Norwood's Cove in 1884 with G. L. 
Lurvey at the head and Levi Lurvey assisting. This was a pop- 
ular organization and well attended. Later one was formed at 
Manset with Clarence Moore at the head and in 1898 there were 
thirteen Good Templar lodges on Mount Desert Island. 

The first Southwest Harbor band was formed in the 80's. 

The two oldest organizations formed to work for the common 
good and for church and charity, were the sewing circles of the 
early fifties at Manset and at Norwood's Cove, of which an 
account is given in the chapter on churches. 

The W. C. T. U. was organized in 1892 by Mrs. Elvira Ire- 
land and Mrs. Evelyn Wilder Neal and the Y's were an active 
group of young people who raised a good deal of money for 
church and temperance work by giving plays, etc. 

And among the many societies for the teaching of temper- 
ance must be included the Juvenile Temple ; an organization of 
grade school children, carried on for many years by Mrs. Levi 
Lurvey. Every Saturday afternoon this good woman assembled 
a large group of children at her home, where they conducted 
their ceremonies, learning much about the proper conduct of a 
public meeting, and received instruction as to the evils of alco- 
holic liquors. Many of the men and women of today remember 
with pleasure those sessions and realize Mrs. Lurvey's patience 
and the value of her precepts. In recent years Mrs. Fred A. 
Walls has conducted a Loyal Legion along much the same line. 

At Norwood's Cove a society was formed in 1894 to raise 
money to build sidewalks in that part of the village. Mrs. Ste- 
phen Gilley was the leader, and through her efforts, plank walks 
were laid for a considerable distance along the roads. 

A Knights of Pythias lodge was formed in Southwest Harbor 
August 18, 1899, with sixty charter members, but it had a brief 

The Owl Qub was formed in 1894 among the young people 
to raise funds for a library building, in which it was very suc- 

Southwest Harbor 123 

Lyceums were held in the 1850's which were very popular. 

The first literary or reading- club was formed in 1897 by Rev. 
George H. Hefflon, a Yale graduate, then pastor of the Congre- 
gational church. The first meeting was held at the home of Mrs. 
Nathan Clark on March 2, 1897. Mrs. William Mason was the 
first president. This was very popular for several years, but it 
finally died out. 

A few years later it was reorganized as a women's club and 
called "The Sphinx Study Club." In 1914 the time of meeting 
was changed to Friday evening to accommodate the teachers 
and the name changed to the Friday Club. During the World 
War the club worked at Red Cross work, but in 1919 it was again 
called together and Mrs. Allen J. Lawler was made president. 
The club was federated in 1914. It functions as an important 
feature of the literary and social life of the community. 

The Board of Trade was formed in the spring of 1922, after 
the fire which destroyed five buildings in the center of the village 
on March 27 of that year. J. E. Wass was the first president 
and he served two years. This organization has done much to 
promote the best interests of the town. In 1935 the name was 
changed to Chamber of Commerce. 

The Christian Endeavor society was formed in 1888. The 
Episcopal church has a Girls' Friendly Society as well as a Guild 
and Women's Auxiliary. 

Troop 99, Boy Scouts, began in December, 1930. The 4-H 
Clubs for both boys and girls have been active at times and done 
valuable work. 

The local branch of the Red Cross came into being during 
the war and is still carried on under direction of Mrs. Alice C. 
Young and Dr. G. A. Neal. 

The Maine Public Health Association cooperates with the 
community in employing a public nurse for Southwest Harbor 
and Tremont, and the Southwest Harbor-Tremont Nursing 
Association aids in raising funds. 

A Parent-Teachers Association was formed in 1937. 

There is a branch of the Farm Bureau Extension which in- 
cludes members from this town and from Tremont. 

The Country Club was formed in 1920 and it owns the fine 
property east of the Mill Pond, which was taken up by the first 

124 Traditions and Records 

settler in Southwest Harbor (William Gilley) and which re- 
mained in his family until its purchase by the Country Club. In 
1921, the house was renovated and decorated, and the large barn 
made into a dancing floor and hall. It has a nine-hole golf 
course, tennis courts and swimming pool. 

In 1897, the different societies in the village combined to raise 
funds for street lights. The lamps were bought and placed 
near those houses whose owners were willing to furnish the kero- 
sene and keep the lamps trimmed and lighted. These lamps did 
duty until the installation of electricity in the summer of 1917. 

At Manset several societies are connected with the church; 
two Ladies' Aids meet each week and also two societies com- 
posed of the younger women. 

In 1934, Mrs. R. W. Gifford organized a Women's Club under 
the auspices of the combined churches. This club is divided into 
groups with various interests but all raising money for church 

A Men's Club meets weekly during the winter in rooms in 
the Salisbury building and there is a Masonic Qub formed to 
raise money for charity. 


It was nearly twenty years after Abraham Somes came with 
his family to make his home at Somesville before William Gilley, 
first permanent settler in Southwest Harbor, built his log cabin 
at Norwood's Cove on land now owned by the Southwest Harbor 
Country Club and which remained in the Gilley family from 
William's time to the date of selling to the present owners. 

William Gilley was at Cranberry Isles in 1777 and it was 
probably four or five years after that date that he went to South- 
west Harbor and took up land which was sheltered from the 
sea though close to it. 

Shore lots were not as popular in those days as they are at 
present. The pioneers knew too many instances of pillage and 
burning along the coast by the crews of warships to risk making 
their homes on the shores of a harbor sure to be entered by ships 
cruising in these waters while the ownership of the land was a 
matter of dispute between England and France. 

Southwest Harbor 125 

It was not until the treaty of 1763 after the Battle of Quebec, 
that France relinquished her claim, and it was several years after 
that event before the cautious settlers dared locate in numbers 
at Southwest Harbor. 

The first settlers took up land and built their first houses 
according to their occupations ; those who followed the sea set- 
tling near the shore and those who were lumbermen or farmers 
selecting sites near the forest or where the land was especially 

The following descriptions were gathered from the older resi- 
dents, from old letters and papers, and much of it may be new 
even to the present owners of the old homes. 

In early days there were several houses in the woods toward 
the mountains, north of the present village where the owners 
had cleared fields and planted fruit trees and where families lived 
for many years, raised their crops and brought up their children. 
Walking through the forest in that section one may still come 
upon traces of a cellar, gnarled old apple trees, a few garden 
lilies or a spring with a worn stone where those of long ago 
knelt to dip up water for house or for flocks. 

About 1800 Liab Gott had a log house at Canada Hollow. 
In 1816 he and his wife and children were working in their field 
leaving the baby asleep in the house. They were out of sight 
of the house. Daniel Femald came through the woods and 
found the house on fire and heard a child crying inside. He 
rushed in and rescued it. The house burned to the ground and 
the family found shelter at the home of relatives at Fernald 

When twin daughters were born to Mrs. Gott soon after, 
she died. Liab Gott married again and built a frame house on 
the site of the first one where the grass-grown ruins may still 
(1937) be seen. A few old apple trees and a row of ancient 
currant bushes still bloom there every spring since they were 
planted nearly a century and a half ago by young people starting 
on the hard task of carving a home from the wilderness. 

Jacob Lurvey, who came with his family from Newburyport, 
Mass., in 1790 and settled on the Norwood Cove shore, near the 
present Tyssowski cottage on land bought of Joseph Bunker, 

126 Traditions and Records 

lived some years in his log cabin there and then built another 
cabin on the high ridge of fertile land now owned by Ben C 
Worcester. Later Mr. Lurvey built a good-sized frame house 
of Colonial design where he lived for many years and his young- 
est son, Enoch, inherited the place, spent his life there and his 
sons also lived a lifetime on the place. The house was burned 
in 1900. The land on this lot is very fertile and the farm yielded 
a good living during the life of Jacob Lurvey and his son Enoch 
who tilled the soil and kept much stock. 

There was a large barn and a garden enclosed by a low stone 
wall where grew the cinnamon roses and other blossoming plants 
brought by Hannah Boynton Lurvey from her home in Byfield, 
Mass. There was a never-failing well in the cellar which was 
considered a great convenience when compared with the heavy 
well sweeps on most of the home places. There was good furni- 
ture in the house, all of which was destroyed by the fire which 
consumed the house. Mr. Worcester bought the place after the 
death of the last of the third generation of Lurveys and he built 
the present buildings. 

A man by the name of Denning had a house south 

of the present camping ground of the Appalachian Mountain 
Club, and Echo Lake was for many years known as Denning's 

The Appalachian Mountain Camp at Echo Lake was estab- 
lished in 1922 and the Mount Desert Island Camp was built in 
1934 for the use of the inhabitants of Mount Desert Island as a 
social meeting place. The furnishings were made by hand in 
rustic fashion and at present (1937) the CCC camp aids in its 
care and upkeep. 

The Gilley field near Long Pond was cleared by Edward 
Gilley who built a house there, afterwards brought out to Nor- 
wood Cove and rebuilt there. Jacob Lurvey gave his son Samuel 
a lot west of his home property where he built a house and 
made his home. 

Southwest of the Lurvey place is the Herrick field where 
Isaac Herrick built his house and raised a large family whose 
descendants still live in Southwest Harbor. Isaac Herrick was 
born at Northport, Maine, and came here from Castine about 
1823-25. He was a millwright and wheelwright and was em- 

South wDST Harbor 127 

ployed at the tide mill at the mill dam which was owned and 
operated by Leonard Holmes. He also made the rough ox carts 
needed by the settlers. He married Lovina Harper of Seal Cove. 
After his family of eight children outgrew the log cabin, Mr. 
Herrick built a frame house, the cellar of which can plainly be 

Andrew Herrick, father of Isaac, was at Southwest Harbor 
for some years and owned land at Cranberry Island. At the 
time of the "battle of Norwood's Cove", in August of 1814, 
Andrew Herrick rowed to Castine to obtain a supply of ammuni- 
tion from the fort at that place. He returned to Northport a 
few years later. 

Isaac Herrick was also a lumberman and quite good-sized 
vessels used to come into the Mill Pond at Norwood's Cove to 
load with his logs at "The Landing" as it has been called ever 

Horace Durgain owned a large lot of land between Southwest 
Harbor and Somesville including part of Robinson Mountain, 
now called Acadia. The ledges at Echo Hill have always been 
called Durgain's Ledges. He sold this land to John G. Richard- 
son of Beech Hill for one hundred dollars. 

Mr. Richardson sold a lot fronting on Somes Sound to Henry 
Robinson, who built a house and lived there for many years. 
The house was burned. One of Mr. Robinson's descendants 
relates that at the time of his marriage, the fee he gave the 
minister for performing the ceremony was fifty cents and a 
quarter of veal. In his later years he became obsessed with the 
idea that Capt. Kidd, the pirate, had hidden great treasure on 
his land and he spent much time in digging for it and excavated 
a great cave in the mountain, but found no treasure. 

Mr. Richardson sold a strip of this land along Echo Lake 
to A. J. Whiting, who sold it to a man by the name of Babbage, 
who built a house on the lake shore which was afterward burned. 

The Carroll house at the foot of St. Sauveur mountain was 
built in 1825 by John Carroll, who was bom in Borrisoleigh, 
Ireland, October 8, 1790, and sailed from Waterford, Ireland, 
for America on May 24, 1814. He landed at St. John, New- 
foundland, where lived relatives of his mother by the name of 
Burke. Here he remained for six years, doing anything that 

128 Traditions and Records 

came to hand and "going to the ice" for the seal fisheries every 
season. In 1820, hearing that there was much work to be done 
in rebuilding the city of Washington, D. C, which had been 
burned by the British in 1814, he and a friend, Michael Bulger, 
took passage on a sailing vessel hoping to work their way to 
Washington. Bulger was a carpenter and Carroll a mason and 
they judged that men of their trades would not be at a loss to 
find employment. 

The vessels in which the young men took passage came as 
far as Mount Desert and before an opportunity came for them to 
advance further on their way, they had been charmed by the 
young ladies of the place and both married the following year. 
John Carroll's wife was Rachel Lurvey, daughter of Jacob and 
Hannah Boynton Lurvey. He purchased the lot of land adjoin- 
ing the Lurvey property on the east and there he built his 
modest home. 

The deed of the place bears the signature of John Quincy 
Adams, who was one of the executors of the will of Ward Nicho- 
las Boylston of Boston, who owned the property at the time of 
his death. 

The land was surveyed and allotted by Salem Towne, Jr., 
and the price paid for one hundred acres was "forty Spanish 
milled dollars." Mr. and Mrs. John Carroll and their two little 
girls moved into their new home on Thanksgiving Day, 1825. A 
holiday dinner was cooked in the new brick oven and over the 
open fire, and a number of relatives gathered to "celebrate the 
hanging of the crane." Roast goose and plum pudding were the 
chief dishes served that day, and a pedler, wandering with his 
pack into the settlement came to the house and was invited to 
partake of the dinner with the family. 

One hundred years later, on Thanksgiving Day, 1925, de- 
scendants of John and Rachel Carroll gathered at the old home 
and in the same old kitchen and from the same blue earthern 
platter, served a similar dinner of roast goose and plum pudding, 
to which many relatives were invited and many more came later 
in the day when a recital of family history was given and 
refreshments served. 

A few years later the old brick oven was fired after being 

Southwest Harbor 129 

idle for sixty-three years, and a meal of old-time viands cooked 
and served to a large number of Carroll descendants. 

The timbers in the house are hand-hewn and the frame put 
together with wooden pins. When the rooms were plastered, as 
hand-made laths were slow of manufacture, boards were nailed 
to the walls and then split in many places with an axe as a foun- 
dation for the plaster. Sheets of birch bark were nailed or 
pegged to the outer walls and roof before the hand-made clap- 
boards and shingles were nailed on. The plaster originally put 
on is in all the rooms today, 

James Brown and his wife, Susan Lurvey Brown, had a house 
a little to the northeast of Vondell Stanley's house. Traces of 
the cellar may still be seen, although the house has been gone 
for many years. 

The first house in the village to the right on entering South- 
west Harbor was built about 1839 by Jonah Corson and his wife 
Martha. After the foundation was built and the timbers pre- 
pared for the building, there was a "raising" and friends and 
neighbors came to help. So many willing helpers came that 
the frame was raised and the boarding done in one day. After 
the day's work was done and the bounteous supper eaten and, 
doubtless many healths drank, one of the men climbed to the 
ridgepole and saying, 

"Here's to Jonah's industry and Martha's delight, 
Framed in a day and raised before night," 
he smashed a bottle of rum on the roof and thus the house was 
christened in true sailor fashion. 

William Herrick, who was a fourteen-year-old boy at the 
time, used to say that he "did his first piece of man's work" in 
helping to dig the cellar. During the digging one of the men 
broke his leg and the cellar was never quite completed according 
to the original plan. The bricks used for chimney and hearth 
were from the Fernald brickyard at Femald Point. 

Mr. and Mrs. Corson lived in their house for some time and 
then sold to Capt. Samuel Rtunill and moved to Northeast Har- 
bor where they had a home on the eastern shore of Somes Sound 
during their lifetime. Mr. and Mrs. Rumill and their large 
family lived in the house for some years and then sold to Lyman 

130 Traditions and Records 

Harper and moved to Boothbay. Mr. and Mrs. Harper lived 
their lives there and their oldest son, Leslie Harper, now owns it. 

The house across the road was built first at Northeast Harbor 
by Nathan Stanley, who later took it down and brought it to its 
present location where it is now occupied by the family of his 
son, Vondell Stanley. The small cottage to the north of this 
house was built on the Milan place for a member of the family 
and later moved to this location by Clinton Hamblen. 

The second house on the right, entering the village, was built 
on the Gilley Field near Long Pond by Edward Gilley, who later 
moved it to its present situation and when he moved to Massa- 
chusetts to make his home the house was sold to Gilbert L. 
Lurvey, whose daughter, Mrs. Maud Lurvey Stanley of Port- 
land, sold it to Mrs. John Bunker in 1936. 

Henry Mayo built the house opposite this one. He built 
only the ell where he lived for some time before selling it to 
Capt. Thomas Milan in whose family it has remained ever since ; 
being now owned and occupied by Clinton Hamblen, son-in-law 
of Capt. Milan. 

Jonathan Manchester built a house on the north corner of 
the road leading to Fernald Point. After living there for some 
time he sold the place to be used as a parsonage. Later the 
church sold it to Frank and Priscilla Lurvey, whose home it was 
for a while. Then the Methodist church purchased it as a 
home for the minister of their church. Rev. B. F. Stinson was 
preaching in the village and living in the house when it burned. 
The present house was built by the community in the late sixties 
and for years was a home for the Methodist preachers and later 
sold to D. L. Mayo, who lived there for some years and sold to 
Mrs. John F. Young, who still owns and occupies it. 

The house on the corner below the hill was built by Enoch 
Lurvey as a home for his son Cyrus, who moved in when he was 
married and lived his life there. His heirs sold to Mrs. Hattie 
Milan Hamblen, she sold to Mrs. Agnes Delaney Jackson and it 
is now owned by members of the Southwest Harbor Country 
Qub. It was built about 1857. 

The first schoolhouse in what is now the town of Southwest 
Harbor stood at the top of the hill across from Mrs. Young's 

Southwest Harbor 131 

house. It was a rough structure with crude wooden benches and 
a floor which slanted toward the front so if anything- was 
dropped by a pupil it would roll to the teacher's desk. Here in 
winter the "big boys" studied navigation and in summer the little 
girls had instruction in knitting and sewing as well as in reading 
and writing. Religious services were also held in the building. 
Able teachers taught there and there were many sentimental 
regrets among the older people when the new schoolhouse was 
built and this old building sold to Cyrus Lurvey to be used for 
years as a barn. 

The house now used as a Country Club house was the home 
of the Gilley family. William Gilley was the first permanent 
settler in Southwest Harbor and his first house was a log cabin 
near the shore. Later he built a house just north of the Gilley 
Burying Ground. Then John, William's grandson, the eldest son 
of Benjamin Gilley, built the house that is now the Country Club 
for his parents. He was under age and for his work on the 
house his father "gave him his time." The place passed from 
father to son in the Gilley family until Pedrick D. Gilley, fourth 
generation to own it, sold it to the present owners. The graves 
of the three generations preceding him are in the Gilley Burying 
Ground nearby. 

The next house on the Fernald Road was built by Henry 
Edmund Day with lumber that he picked up at sea after a ship- 
wreck. Mr. Day owned or was part owner of a small vessel 
called "The Waterloo" and later of a craft known as the "Roscoe 
G." in which he used to go "coasting" between Maine ports and 
Boston. It was during one of these trips that he found the 
lumber, rafted it and brought it home to build his house. This 
was about 1852. Mr. and Mrs. Day spent their lives there and 
it was afterward owned by Mr. and Mrs. Frank Norris, who 
cared for the Days in their last years and who finally sold the 
place to Mr. and Mrs. Charles Young. John Carter bought it 
of Mrs. Young and sold to Allston Sargent of New York, who 
has remodelled and improved it and it is used as a summer 
cottage. Mr. Sargent gave it to his sister, Mrs. Ralph P. 
Plaisted, in 1936, and it is her summer home. 

Mr. and Mrs. James Edwin Robinson built their house in 
1883-4, and Mr. and Mrs. Sylvester Dorr built their home which 

132 Traditions and Records 

they now occupy. The house south of these buildings was built 
by Elias Ginn about 1890. Mr. Ginn's daughter sold it to 
Allston Sargent of New York, who in 1933 sold to Kenneth 
Usher of Cambridge, who uses it as a summer home. 

South of this place is a house that was built by Bion Rey- 
nolds about 1897. It is now owned by A. C. Yates of Washing- 
ton, D. C., and is rented during the summer season. The small 
club house near the Country Club landing was built in 1933 for 
the convenience of those using the swimming pool and the tennis 
courts which are near by. 

The first owner of the land where the William J, Miller place 
is was one Joseph Bunker, who took up a large tract of land in 
the earliest days of settlement of this vicinity. He sold it to 
Jacob Lurvey, soldier of the Revolution, for nine pounds English 
money. The first log house of the Lurvey family was near the 
present Tyssowski cottage and they spent several years there 
before moving to another site on the high ridge of land to the 
north. Mr. Lurvey gave a piece of land to his son, Isaac, who 
built a house where the Miller house now stands. Then he sold 
to Leonard Holmes, who had a store and a mill at the Mill Dam. 
Mr. Holmes sawed the old house in two after living there for 
some time. He used one half as a workshop and the other half 
was moved over to the southern boundary of the Gilley Ceme- 
tery where it was owned and occupied by Reuben Higgins until 
it was blown down by a great storm. Aaron Gross rebuilt it 
(his wife was the daughter of Reuben Higgins) and lived there 
for some years when the house burned. Stephen Manchester 
had a house near the cemetery and two houses, one near the 
shore and the other not far from the first Gilley house, were 
owned by men by the name of Grow. A part of the old Man- 
chester house was used to build the Gross house, 

Mr. Holmes built the house now owned by Mr. Miller and it 
was his home for many years, then inherited by his daughter, 
Mrs. Emeline Holmes Hamor, whose heirs sold it to the Miller 

The schoolhouse lot was purchased of William Thomas 
Holmes on March 27, 1860, and the building erected that year 
to take the place of the old one which stood opposite Mrs. John 
F. Yoimg's house. 

Southwest Harbor 133 

In 1913 the school at Norwood's Cove was abolished and 
since that time the pupils have attended the schools at the vil- 
lage. Throughout the years this school district maintained a 
high rank of scholarship and many earnest and gifted teachers 
have taught in the little building, which was painted yellow with 
white trimmings and for equipment had a large desk for the 
teacher, a chair, one or two maps and part of the time a water 
pail and tin dipper. 

Later in its career an organ was added through the Good 
Templars' lodge and they kindly allowed the school to use it. 
Rev. Charles F. Dole, whose summer home was close by, used 
to hold Sunday afternoon services in the schoolhouse and at dif- 
ferent times a Sunday School was held there. Concerts and 
plays have been given in the schoolroom, funeral services have 
been conducted there, Christmas trees have yielded their bounti- 
ful fruit to an excited assembly and altogether, the little school- 
house had a large share in the social and educational life of the 
community. It was purchased from the town by Allston Sargent 
and was taken down in 1937 by Lawrence Robinson, who used 
the lumber to build an addition to his house. 

The cottage now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Meade of 
Weston, Mass., was built by Lewis Holmes, who sold it to his 
brother, William Thomas Holmes. On September 26, 1865, Mr. 
Holmes sold the place to Enoch Lurvey, Jr., for $470. Two 
years later Mr. Lurvey was lost at sea and his widow sold the 
house to David Robbins. William Herrick was the next owner 
and he sold to Mr. Meade, who remodelled the house. 

Rev. Charles F. Dole built his cottage about 1887; the first 
in this part of the town and one of the first on the western part 
of Mount Desert Island. For more than fifty years the Dole 
family spent their summers in Southwest Harbor and Mr. and 
Mrs. Dole had a marked influence for good in the community. 
Their daughter, Mrs. Horace Mann, now owns and occupies the 
cottage each season with her family. 

Prof. E. B. Homer built his cottage near the shore not long 
after Mr. Dole's was built. Members of the family still own it 
and spend a part of every summer there. In 1936 another cot- 
tage was built on this property by the Homer family. 

134 Traditions and Records 

Mrs. Martha Brown Fincke built her cottage in 1916-17. 
The E. A. Lawler cottage on the side of the Lawler hill was 
built about 1896 to rent to summer visitors. 

During the winter of 1936-7 Sylvester Dorr built for Mr. and 
Mrs. William L. Newton of South Carolina the house of Colonial 
desigfn on the shore just east of the Causeway Club swimming 
pool and in 1937-8 Mr. Dorr built the house close by the Cause- 
way Club boat landing for Mr. and Mrs. Thurlow Gordon of 
New York. 

The Tyssowski cottage was built in 1922-3 and Charles 
Morris Young of Philadelphia built a studio on his land near 
the Mill Dam in 1924. 

Thomas Somers and his wiie, Elsie Slowly Somers, built the 
first house on the Lawler place. They came from Connecticut, 
bringing with them apple trees, currant bushes, bulbs and seeds 
of flowers, many of which are still growing where they planted 
them about 1787. Mrs. Somers was born about 1767 and her 
eldest son, Elisha Mansfield, was born about 1786. She married 
in her native town Thomas Somers, a young mulatto, probably 
about 1786 and they at once moved to Mount Desert. Mrs. 
Somers had some knowledge of the medicinal qualities of herbs 
and roots and some skill in caring for the sick and she minis- 
tered to her neighbors in time of need. Both were industrious 
and intelligent but "addicted to strong drink and hard language" 
as one of their neighbors expressed it. Their first child, Sally, 
was born April 24, 1791, and their second child, Thomas, Jr., was 
bom October 22, 1793. 

Somers took part in the Revolutionary War and is recorded 
as teamster in a Massachusetts regiment. 

The daughter Sally married John Clark, a white man, and 
they had one son, John M. Clark, born about 1820-21. He is 
described as being a short, thick-set young man with a negro 
cast of countenance. He shipped in a vessel bound to sea about 
1840 and was never heard from again. 

Sally's husband was unwilling to live with the Somers family 
and as his wife refused to leave her parents, he disappeared and 
was never heard from. Some years later Sally married Jonathan 
Gardiner and when she died, in 1832 he married again and moved 

SouTHWE^ST Harbor 135 

to Salem, Mass. Thomas Somers, Jr., borrowed a boat of a 
neighbor and started for Bar Harbor. His boat was found on 
the rocks off Otter Creek and in it was a bottle partly full of 

Mrs. Somers died about 1839 and her husband the following 
year. They and their daughter Sally are buried in the Gilley 
Burying Ground in unmarked graves. 

Mrs. Somers was suspected by some of her neighbors of 
having supernatural powers and many tales were told of her 
knowledge of witchcraft and her skill in practising it. The ves- 
sels bound up Somes Sound had a way of bringing Mrs. Somers 
a pound of tea, a round of pork or a bottle of rum for a guaran- 
tee of a safe passage up the Sound. If they failed to do this she 
would pronounce a curse against them and tradition says that 
they often came to grief. One story is told of a captain who 
scorned her offers and sailed toward his destination only to 
ground his vessel on one of the points at the mouth of the Sound. 
She offered to float his craft for a round of pork. He refused 
her demands until he had worked in vain for a day or two and 
failed to float ; than he gave the required gift and at the next 
high tide he found his vessel floating free of the rocks. 

Sally was also supposed to have witch-like qualities. She 
had a black cat of which she was very fond and the neighbors 
claimed that the cat partook of the qualities of her mistress. It 
was said that the cat could enter any barn or cellar no matter 
how closely it was closed and many were the depredations that 
were said to be caused by it. Several attempts had been made 
to dispose of the cat but none availed and at last one of the 
neighbors remembered that witches could only be killed by a 
silver bullet. So he made a silver bullet from a coin and loaded 
his gun. When the cat appeared he shot at it and killed it. 
Tradition relates that Sally was standing at a table in her home 
ironing when the deed was done ; that she cried out "They have 
killed my cat", took to her bed and passed away in a few days. 
It was Sally who gave the name of Dog to the mountain to the 
north of her home. She had two dogs that began to worry not 
only the sheep belonging to the neighbors, but also her own. 
She had no way of disposing of the creatures so she coaxed them 

136 Traditions and Records 

to the top of the mountain and to the edge of the cliffs over- 
looking the Sound and there she pushed them off. It is unfor- 
tunate that the memory of such a cruel deed should have been 
perpetuated so many years by the name, and St. Sauveur seems 
a much more appropriate name for this rugged eminence. 

The Somers family first lived in a log cabin on the present 
site of A. P. Butler's cottage. Then they built a small house 
just east of the present Lawler house where they lived the rest 
of their lives. After the death of Mrs. Somers in 1839, the 
place was given to Ezra Robinson for the care of Mr. Somers. 
He lived but one year after the death of his wife and the place 
was sold to Robert Gott, who built the present house about 1843, 
bringing the frame from Little Gott Island. Later he traded 
the place back to Ezra Robinson for a lot of land at the head 
of the harbor. William Lawler purchased the place of Ezra 
Robinson in 1848, lived there and brought up his large family. 
In 1937 it was sold to Mrs. John H. Longmaid. The house has 
been remodelled but the lines of the old dwelling have been re- 

Allen J. Lawler's cottage was built in 1888. He lived there 
for a few years and then built a house in the village and this 
one has since been rented as a summer home. A small house 
once stood on this same site which was built by a man by the 
name of Fitzgibbons from the timbers of an old smoke house 
which stood on Connors Point. He sold it to Lewis Holmes 
who lived in it and about 1880 it was hauled by oxen to a spot 
near the Dole cottage where it was occupied by Mr. and Mrs. 
Holmes during their lives. Then it was rented to various fam- 
ilies and in 1926 it was hauled to a lot on the Sam Lurvey place 
by Harvey Gilley where it still stands. 

Miss Elizabeth Packard built her cottage on the little point 
in 1932, also the small house which is a home for her assistants. 
Mr. and Mrs. A. P. Butler built their house in 1925-6 for a sum- 
mer home but have found it very convenient and comfortable as 
a winter residence. 

A house long stood on Connors Point in which Major Man- 
chester lived for some time. Later it was occupied by a Murphy 
family and after that by a family named Kenniston. One of the 

Southwest Harbor 137 

daughters of the Kennistons married a man named Starling and 
they lived there. Mrs. Starling took passage on a sailing vessel 
for Boston taking with her her infant son and leaving three little 
girls at home. On the return trip the vessel was carrying too 
much sail and capsized. All on board were drowned and but 
few of the bodies recovered. Mrs. Starling was in the ship's 
cabin and the rescuers cut a hole through the bottom of the over- 
turned vessel to remove her body. She and her child were 
buried on the shores of Barnstable Bay. The house on the point 
was sold to John Connors, who, with his wife and family had 
come from Ireland. In late years the land has been sold in lots 
to summer residents who have built cottages here. Among these 
are A. C. Yates of Washington, D. C, Joseph Brown of Prince- 
ton, N. J., who built his cottage in 1923, and during the winter of 
1936-7 R. M. Norwood built for the Brown family a small cot- 
tage on their property and also a log cabin on "the shanty lot" 
which they purchased from the Connors heirs. 

Rev. Henry Wilder Foote of Belmont, Mass., bought the 
house at the very end of the point which was built by Mr. and 
Mrs. Samuel Meade before they bought the house on the Fernald 
Road. John Conners and his family lived a number of years in 
the house on the point and later built a larger and better house 
on the north side of the Fernald Point Road. This was burned 
years after the old people had died and a new house to the south 
of this one, built by Patrick Connors, and occupied for some 
years was also burned. The parents of John Connors came over 
from Ireland to live with their son and he built a small house 
for them on the west side of Fernald Cove. They spoke of it 
as "the shanty" and the lot has always been called "the shanty 

"Jimmie Welch" lived for many years in a camp on the 
shores of Connors Cove. Part of his shelter was made by an 
old boat overturned to make a roof for his hen house and also 
his own habitation. Sometimes his hens lived in the same room 
with their owner. One pet was called "Gubby" and children 
who often called on "Jimmie" were delighted to see this favorite 
bird eating from the same plate as her master. It was not 
known where "Jimmie Welch" came from but it was said that he 

138 Traditions and Records 

had broken some law in his native land and fled from justice. 
He kneaded his bread on his knee and always made his callers 
welcome. His last days were spent at West Tremont with a 
family by the name of Murphy who cared for him during his 
final illness. Probably his real name was never known. 

The land at Fernald Point was taken up by Andrew Tarr, 
who had come from Gloucester, Mass., and first settled at the 
head of the Sound to be near his former neighbors, the Richard- 
sons. The Report of the Commissioners of 1808 shows that he 
took up Fernald Point before 1785. His daughter, Comfort 
Tarr Fernald, inherited the property and her husband, Tobias 
Fernald, built the house which stands near the end of the Point. 
The site first selected was to the north of the present location 
and the building was partly completed when the change was 
decided upon and made. This was in the early eighteen hun- 
dreds. In 1842 the house was remodeled and made into a two- 
family dwelling for Eben and Daniel Fernald, sons of Tobias. 
The old chimney was taken down and two chimneys built and 
the two apartments made exactly alike. The wide front stairs 
are an interesting feature of the old house. 

The two brothers lived there and worked the farm for many 
years and when they were no longer able to carry on the labor 
Eben Fernald deeded his part of the farm to his son. Prof. 
Charles H. Fernald of Amherst College, Mass., and Daniel who 
never married, gave his portion to his nephew, Rev. Oliver H. 
Fernald, with whom he spent his last years. Rev. Oliver Fer- 
nald built the other house on the point and in 1926 his daughter 
sold it to Miss Mary E. Dreier of New York, who made many 
changes and additions to fit it for a summer home and she 
named it Valour House in memory of the courage of that little 
band of men who attempted to make their settlement under 
Father Biard on this site in 1613 and planned to establish a 
mission for the conversion of the Indians. 

The spring of cold fresh water, called The Jesuit Spring, 
which is below high water mark is still a place of interest and 
the shell heaps along the shore show that Fernald Point was an 
Indian resort for many, many years. Valuable Indian relics 
have been found in these shell heaps. Miss Louise Fernald (now 

Southwest Harbor 139 

Mrs. Lynn M. Goulding) after selling the large house to Miss 
Dreier, built the cottage near the bridge which she uses as a 
summer home. 

The Fernald property included Flying Hill and Valley Cove, 
the southern part of Dog Mt. (now Mt. Sauveur) and a number 
of acres of woodland at Canada Hollow. Valley Cove is one of 
the great beauty spots of Mount Desert Island and the short and 
easy climb to the top of Flying Hill well repays the effort of 
getting there. 

The Fernalds were enterprising people and carried on con- 
siderable business in lumbering, brick-making from the clay near 
the bridge, and they built small vessels and captained them in 
fishing and trading ventures. 

It was during a lumbering operation on the Fernald land 
toward Somesville in the winter of 1820 that Canada Hollow 
received its name. It was a very severe winter and stories of 
the extreme cold to the north were brought down from Canada. 
The choppers got the habit of referring to the location of their 
work as "Canada" believing that no place could be much colder, 
and the name has been used down through the years and now 
seems firmly fixed. 

Miss Dreier in 1928 purchased the old Fernald homestead 
and now owns it and uses it as a guest house. 

Edward S. Macomber built his cottage in 1920 and the Scott 
family had their Swiss chalet built in 1916-17. Some smaller 
cottages were added to this property in 1930 and the whole is 
now owned by Rev. and Mrs. A. H. Lucas of Washington, D. C. 

Returning to the Main Road: the eastern side opposite the 
road leading to the Robinson, Greenlaw and Dunbar houses is 
still spoken of as "The Landing" — a legacy from the early days 
when small vessels used to come into the Mill Pond to take on 
board loads of logs which had been landed at this spot. Several 
vessels were built in the Pond along the shore of what is now 
the property of Miss Grace M. Simmons, which shows that the 
water was much deeper there then than now. 

The house on the hill now owned by Arthur Robinson was 
built by William H. Rea and the one now owned by Lewis Willey 
was built by Edwin Hersey. Mr. and Mrs. Frank Moore cared 

140 Traditions and Records 

for Mr. Hersey and at his death the place became theirs. They 
sold to Mr. and Mrs. John A. Walls and the Willeys bought it of 
Mrs. Walls. Seth Greenlaw built his bungalow and Lewis Dun- 
bar built his residence. The small house in that section was 
built by Frank Moore, who lived in it for a while and it has been 
occupied by several different families. Benjamin Gilley once 
had a house on this hill where he lived for a long time. 

The Lurvey house was built by Samuel Lurvey, Jr., who lived 
and died there as did his wife and the place passed to their 
adopted son, Seth W. Lurvey, and from him to his son, Sam A. 
Lurvey. It was formerly surrounded by a white picket fence 
and a summer house was in the garden. 

In 1888 Capt. Robie M. Norwood of Seal Cove built a house 
south of where the electric power construction is now. This 
house was destroyed by fire in 1921. Capt. Norwood's son, 
Robie M., Jr., built his house to the south of his father's home 
in 1897 and lived there until he built another residence on the 
High Road in the village, when he sold this house to Jesse 

The Sawyer house was built by Deacon Benjamin H. Dodge 
of Seal Cove about 1887. It is now owned by the heirs of his 
daughter, Mrs. Emmons P. Sawyer. 

John A. Walls built the adjoining house in 1884 and lived 
there many years, selling it after the death of his wife to Vera- 
nus Reed, whose heirs sold to Grover A. Morse of Cranberry 
Isles, who now (1938) lives there. 

Walter B. Stanley built his house in 1883 and the house on 
the corner opposite was built by Marshall Lurvey, sold to Capt. 
Thomas Milan, who sold to Ezra D. Lurvey, whose son, Ezra W. 
Lurvey, now owns it. 

Edward Black's house was built in 1924 near the junction of 
the Manset and Bass Harbor roads and moved in 1935 to its 
present site. Homer Brawn built his cottage below the Lurvey 
Hill and the adjoining small house was built by Mr. and Mrs. 
Warren Norwood. After their deaths it was purchased by Mrs. 
Ethel Robbins, now Mrs. Harry Albee. 

John R. Tinker built his house on the south side of the Seal 
Cove comer and it is now owned by James Elliott. The square 

Southwest Harbor 141 

at this corner is named in memory of Eugene Norwood, who was 
killed in action in the World War. 

The house occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Austin Mitchell and 
family was built by Mrs. Mitchell's father, Capt. Joseph B. Nor- 
wood, in 1896. 

Capt. and Mrs. Norwood now live in a small cottage near by, 
part of which is built from timbers from an old house which 
stood almost on the same site and which was Mrs. Norwood's 
childhood home. This house was built by Allen Hopkins, once 
a prominent citizen of the town, and was his home during his 
lifetime. Then it was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Levi Lurvey, who 
lived and died there. After their deaths, the old house was for 
some time the home of Lemuel and Jacob Lurvey after their 
house had been destroyed by fire. Albert Rowell owns a small 
cottage near by and also Mr. and Mrs. Norman Bouchard. 

Nahum Norwood built his house in 1903 and it is now owned 
by his heirs. 

Henry Bartlett built the house now owned by Alton Trundy. 
This was in 1870. His young wife, dying not long after, the 
house was rented to different people for some years, then bought 
by Freeman J. Lurvey, who lived there for a while and then sold 
to Mr. and Mrs. Trundy. 

The small bungalow by the roadside was built in 1925 by 
Mrs. Helen Hamor as a home for herself. She left it by will to 
her grandson, Elwell Trundy, and it is occupied by tenants. 

The house on the brow of the hill was built in 1854 by 
Willard Young of Trenton, whose wife was a daughter of Allen 
Hopkins, who gave her the land on which to build her home. 
She died before the house was completed and it was sold to 
George Lewis Harmon, whose daughter, Mrs. Frank Stewart, 
now owns and occupies it. 

The house at the top of the long Seal Cove hill was started 
by the Mr. FitzGibbons who attempted to build a house on the 
Fernald Road. It was a very small building and was purchased 
by Ezra D. Lurvey whose home it was for a long time. He 
built a large addition to the house in 1889 and it is now owned 
and occupied by his son, Ezra W. Lurvey. 

Walter Murphy's house was built in 1926. 

142 Traditions and Records 

The house on the corner where the three roads meet was 
built by Benjamin Norwood, sold to Edwin Robbins, then to 
Harlan Murphy and is now owned by William Soukup and 

Joseph Murphy built the house at Pleasant Valley Farm in 
1849. It was below the hill in front of where it now stands. It 
was only partly done when John D. Lurvey bought the place, 
moved the building to its present site and completed it. He and 
his wife spent their lives there and it was afterward owned and 
occupied for many years by his daughter, Mrs. Henry Trundy 
and family. It is now owned by their nephew, Ezra W. Lurvey. 

Rufus Trundy built the house on the Long Pond road where 
he lived for some years before moving to a house in the village. 
The CCC camp was established in the spring of 1933 and B. C. 
Worcester built the log cabin near it that is occupied by officers 
of the Company. Horace Herrick built his cottage in 1935. 

John Brawn built his house on the Seal Cove road in 1888. 
It changed hands several times after the deaths of Mr. and Mrs. 
Brawn and was destroyed by fire in 1932. The old house which 
was for many years the home of Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Lurvey and 
their large family, built in 1827, has been taken down. A small 
camp owned by B. C. Worcester is built in the field of the old 
Lurvey house but only the lilacs and straggling rose bushes 
marks the site where this family lived for a lifetime. 

Isaac Lurvey's son Freeman built a home for himself to the 
west of his father's house. It was only partly done when the 
Civil War began and the young man enlisted and marched away. 
He died at Augusta in 1863 and his father bought the house 
from the young widow and sold it later to Joshua Marshall. It 
has changed hands several times since the Marshalls owned it 
and is now the property of William Herrick. 

Owen Lurvey started to build a house near that of his father 
at the junction of the Seal Cove and Long Pond roads but did 
not complete it. Mr. John Finney bought the building, moved it 
to the Seal Cove road where he owned land and finished it. The 
place is now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Albert G. Hall and used as 
a poultry farm under the name of Hillcrest Farm. 

A mile or so along the Seal Cove road there used to be a 

Southwest Harbor 143 

house owned by Samuel Norwood. It has long since disappeared 
but the descendants of the family live in the town. 

The house now occupied by Harvey Gilley and family was 
built on land now owned by Mrs. John F. Young at the comer 
of the Main road and Femald Point road. It was built by D. L. 
Mayo who used it as a store. Montreville Gilley bought it, 
moved it to its present situation and lived there. After the 
deaths of Mr. and Mrs, Gilley, the place was occupied by their 
son Harvey and family. 

Thomas Day built the house on the Cook place. It was a 
small, one-story house, later enlarged to its present form. It was 
once the home of Rev. Charles Brown, minister of the Congrega- 
tional church of Mount Desert Island and later sold to Rev. 
Benjamin F. Stinson who lived there many years, his heirs 
selling it to Charles E. Cook. 

While Mr. Stinson owned the place he built a building 
directly across the road which he used as a boat shop. On the 
second floor were living rooms occupied by tenants. The build- 
ing was partly done when it was blown down by an unusual 
wind in the late 1870's. He rebuilt it and many different families 
occupied the living apartments during the existence of the 

The old house on the hill west of the road was built by 
Andrew Tarr about 1838 or 40 and it has always been owned 
by his heirs. It is now the property of Mr. and Mrs, Stephen 
Harmon of Jonesport. There was a public hall in the ell of 
the house, which the Masonic lodge occupied for a number of 
years. Mr. Tarr kept a general store in a part of the house for 
several years. The place was inherited by the adopted daughter 
of Mr. and Mrs. Tarr who left it to her children. 

Fred Robbins had his house built by William H. Rea. During 
the years that Mr, Robbins was employed as a lighthouse 
keeper, the house was rented and so he built the small cottage 
to the south of his home as a place where he and his wife could 
spend their annual vacations. 

The next house was built in the spring of 1934 by Raymond 
Brotemarkle for Mrs. Alfred Herrfeldt of New York, whose 
summer home it is. 

144 Traditions and Records 

The Carpenter house was built by John C. Harmon as a 
residence for himself. He lived there a short time and sold the 
house to Nathan Smallidge as a residence for the minister of 
the Congregational church, who at that time in the eighteen 
sixties was Rev. David Hibbard, greatly beloved by his people. 
After Rev. Hibbard had completed his labors here, the house 
was sold to Capt. Jacob Mayo, Jr., whose home it was during 
his lifetime and it is now (1938) the property of his daughter, 
Mrs. Hattie Mayo Carpenter. After John C. Harmon had sold 
the above house he built another, which now is the property of 
Miss Grace M. Simmons, but with many additions and changes. 

R. P. Brotemarkle built his carpenter shop in the spring of 
1937. The second floor has living rooms where Mr. and Mrs. 
Brotemarkle live. 

A house of the old New England type stood for many years 
to the south of the Simmons house and it had an important part 
in the affairs of Southwest Harbor. It was built by a man named 
Dodd between 1785 and 1791-2. Mr. Dodd came here in company 
with a man by the name of Jones, who built a house on the Jacob 
Lurvey place near the old well. When Jacob Lurvey moved to 
that site he lived in this house for some years. Dodd sold his 
half finished house to George Harmon, ancestor of the Harmon 
family here. The first school in the settlement was held in part 
of this house, taught by Mrs. Polly Milliken. One of the pupils, 
who lived to a great age, used to tell of playing around the un- 
finished rooms and hopping from sill to sill in those whose 
flooring was not laid. The map which was made by Salem 
Towne in 1808 gives George Harmon as the owner of this prop- 
erty. (A copy of this map is in the Southwest Harbor public 
library.) In 1814 Mr. Harmon represented Mount Desert in the 
Massachusetts Legislature. In 1818 he divided the property 
giving half to his son, George, Jr., who made the house his 
home during his lifetime. The first meeting called to consider 
the organization of a Congregational church was held in this 
house which seems to have been frequently used as a place of 
public meeting. 

George, Sr., in his old age, deeded his part of the place to his 
grandson, John C. Harmon, for the care of himself and wife. 


^1 -— ^ 

2 "* 

s -?; 

o - 

o a 

Southwest Harbor 145 

George, Jr.'s part descended to his children. His daughter, Mrs. 
EHzabeth Harmon Gilley, wife of Benjamin Gilley, lived her 
life there and cared for her parents. Later, the property came 
into the hands of George Harmon, now of Bar Harbor, great- 
grandson of the original owner, and the interesting old house 
was taken down. For many years there was a barn across the 
road belonging to the Harmon family. 

William Mason bought his house in 1884. It was built by 
Stephen Gilley, who sold it to his brother Charles, who sold to 
Mr. Mason. 

Soly Caruso's cottage was built in 1930 and Ralph Sawyer's 
soon after. 

Mrs. Alice Gilley's house was built by Seth Higgins in 1859. 
He bought the lot in 1854 from Nehemiah Cousins, paying 
thirteen dollars for it. Then he sold the place to William Her- 
rick. It has been the home of many families and was bought 
by Mr. and Mrs. Gilley many years ago. 

The house south of William Mason's was built in 1905 by 
John Wilson of Bass Harbor and his son Leon. Mrs. Venia 
Hodgkins bought it of the heirs of the Wilson family. It was 
purchased in 1937 by Chester Clement, Jr. 

Winfred B. Joy's house was built in the summer of 1923. 
George R. Fuller built his house about 1902-3. The Cousins 
cottage was built by Rev. E. M. Cousins as a summer home 
which the family occupies every season. 

The Cousins homestead was built between 1834 and 1841 by 
Rev. Micah W. Strickland, who was minister of the Congrega- 
tional church here at that time. He was a very active and in- 
genious man and did the greater part of the building with his 
own hands. He quarried out the stone used in the foundation at 
what is now Hall Quarry and rafted it down the Sound. His 
wife was a daughter of Dr. Kendall Kittredge and they had a 
large family of children. Mr. Strickland was careful and cere- 
monious in his church work and saw that the records were 
correctly kept. On the church books there are many entries in 
his neat, plain handwriting. When he went to another field of 
labor he sold the house to Andrew Haynes, who, after living 
there for several years, sold to Nehemiah Cousins in 1849 and 

146 Traditions and Records 

his descendants still own and occupy it. The house has never 
been changed in any way since it was built. 

Joseph B. Mason built the house on the north side of the hill 
and it is now owned by his grandson, Joseph Trask. Henry 
Gilley's house was built in 1929. 

Harry Newman built his house in 1924-5 and Raymond Mace 
built his in 1928. 

Mrs. William Hanna owns the house built by Montreville 
Gilley in 1889 on the Forest Road. Alden Mace built his house 
in 1924 and Chester E. Clement's was built in 1923-4. Mrs. 
Roland Lunt's house was built for Harvey Hodgkins who sold 
to Capt. Lunt. The mill was erected in 1922 by B. C. Worcester 
and he built several small cottages in the vicinity for those in 
his employ. Robert Carter built his house in 1931. Jasper 
Hutchins owns a house on this road. There is also a large 
building near the mill site, owned by B. C, Worcester, which is 
used as a storage place for the road machinery belonging to the 

James Norwood built a house in 1937-8 on land purchased 
from the heirs of Leverett Gilley. 

The ell of the old Gilley house was built by William Gilley, 
who was bom on Baker's Island. His son John built the main 
part of the house and lived there, leaving the place to his son 
Leverett, whose family now lives there. 

The next house was built by William Gilley, Jr., son of the 
man mentioned above and the fourth to bear the name. His 
widow gave the place to her niece, Mrs. Carrie Bunker Joyce, 
for caring for her in her old age. The ell of this house was 
built to be used as a store on the grounds of the E. L. Higgins 
house. It was sold to Capt. Gilley, who moved it to the southern 
part of his property and used it as a boat shop. Later it was 
moved to its present situation as part of the house. 

David Robbins was the builder and owner of the house now 
owned by Frank Moore. Mr. Robbins sold the place to James 
Ross and he sold to Thomas Holmes who lived there for many 
years. It has been owned by several people and the Moores 
have owned it for some time. 

Thomas Lawton built the house which has always been the 
home of his family. 

Southwest Harbor 147 

The Chester Robbins house was built by Herbert Stanley, 
who sold to Melvin Norwood, and it has been owned by several 
persons. It was partially destroyed by fire a few years ago and 
has been remodeled in the restoration. 

Francis Gilley was the builder of the Gilley homestead. He 
was born on Baker's Island and was a brother to William Gilley, 
Sr., whose home was near. The place was left to his son George, 
whose son. Dr. Philip F. M. Gilley, now owns and occupies it. 

Dr. George A. Neal's residence was built by Danforth Mar- 
cyces who was a prominent citizen of the town for some years. 
He was in charge of the Custom House here for a long time, 
moving to Bar Harbor when his duties there were over. His 
son-in-law, James J. Lawton, owned the place for some time and 
sold it to Dr. Neal years after he had moved to Massachusetts 

to make his home. 

The public garage nov/ owned by Earl Gordon and Leslie 
White was built in 1928 for Howard E. Robinson, who operated 
it for a while and then sold to Gordon and White who have 
greatly enlarged and improved the original building. 

The Episcopal church was built by R. M. Norwood during 
the early summer of 1918 and the primary school building was 
also built by Mr. Norwood. 

The high school building is the third educational edifice 
to stand on the same lot. The first schoolhouse, built by the 
early settlers as a place for school and also for church services, 
was replaced about 1862 by the two-story white building that 
stood there for many years. The first old schoolhouse was pur- 
chased by J. T. R. Freeman and it forms part of the ell of his 
house now owned by his daughter, Mrs. Fred A. Walls. W. W. 
A. Heath taught the first term of high school in the second 
schoolhouse. It was used for church services also until the 
building of the Congregational church in 1885. A high school 
was maintained here for some years during the eighteen six- 
ties; then interest or funds gave out and there was no high 
school in the town until 1887 when it was decided to have three 
terms a year, each in different parts of the town which then 
included Tremont. The fall term was at Seal Cove, the early 
winter term at Tremont and the last term of the year at South- 

148 Traditions and Records 

west Harbor or Manset alternately. Charles E. Perkins of La- 
moine was the teacher for several years. In 1906 the Southwest 
Harbor schoolhouse was sold to George Harmon of Bar Harbor 
who bought the adjoining lot to the south, moved the building 
there and made two stores on the first floor and a hall on the 
second. The hall was later made into two apartments for rent. 
A new schoolhouse was built on the school lot but back from 
the road where it now stands. Arthur T. Richardson was the 
architect and Henry Tracy the builder. R. M. Norwood has built 
the additions that have been made. Since the building of this 
house, the high school has been held here. 

Monday morning, December 6, 1937, ground was broken for 
a new brick building for the high school to be built partly by 
the town and partly by a grant from the Federal government. 
W. H. McPherson of Bangor was the contractor. 

On the land across from the schoolhouse there was a black- 
smith shop built about 1855 by William Allen who died at sea 
a few years later. The shop was used for a number of years and 
even now old iron tools and fixtures of the fashion of that day 
are often turned up from the earth. John D. Lurvey purchased 
the lot and built thereon a small building which he used as a 
storehouse for the coffins which he made, as he was a skilled 
carpenter and cabinet maker. Later this building was used as a 
public library and was twice moved ; once to the northern end of 
the lot and again to the place now occupied by the Lawton 
Variety Store, where it was used as a drug store, a jeweler's 
store, a barber shop and the post office. John C. Ralph kept the 
post office there and enlarged the building. 

When Freeman J. Lurvey built the store now ovv^ned by 
Arther Allen, this versatile little building was moved to the 
rear of it and is still a part of the Allen store. Mr. Ralph built 
a new building for the post office. Thomas Lawton bought the 
Ralph establishment and conducted a variety store there until it 
was burned in the fire of 1922. The present building on the site 
was built by Mr, Lawton in the spring of 1922. The Lurvey 
building was built as a general store and was conducted by 
Liston F. Smith for some years. Mr. Smith came to this vicinity 
some years previous and went over Mount Desert Island with a 

Southwest Harbor 149 

pedlar's cart, calling himself "The Live Yankee." When he 
settled down to storekeeping- this was on his sign and by this 
cognomen he was known to most of the people. Later he moved 
his goods to one of the stores in the basement of the Masonic 
Hall where he was in business until failing health forced him to 

The Public Library had its beginning in the summer of 1884 
when Mrs. Annie Sawyer Downs, one of the early summer resi- 
dents, gathered a quantity of books, mostly paper covered, from 
the guests at the hotels and they were placed on a shelf in Dr. 
R. J. Lemont's drug store. Dr. and Mrs. Lemont gave their 
services as librarians and when the number of books increased 
and outgrew their limited quarters in 1886, the little coffin shop 
mentioned above was rented and was a home for the books until 
1895, when the present building was built by Melvin Norwood 
according to plans furnished by Prof. E. B. Homer, one of the 
summer residents. 

The Park Theater was built in 1918-19 by R. M. Norwood 
for Byron Mayo. An old house stood for many years on this 
site which was built by Elisha Crane on a lot on what is now the 
Forest Road, just south of Mrs. Roland Lunt's house. This was 
purchased by Mr. Sanford and moved to the lot where the 
theater now stands. Mr. Sanford built a two-story addition to 
the house, using the old part as an ell. It was sold to William 
Shields, a brother-in-law of Andrew Tarr, who kept a store 
there. Then John T. R. Freeman lived there and kept the post 
office. Later, it was purchased by Thomas Clark, whose home 
it was for many years. After he moved to Augusta, the place 
was rented to various people, including several ministers of the 
Congregational church. George R. Fuller had his law office 
there for some time. Finally it fell out of repair and was used 
as a storehouse and one calm evening it burned to the ground. 
The house was of attractive design, with pink old-fashioned 
roses overgrowing the front yard and great willow trees over- 
shadowing it. 

The site south of the Lawton Variety Store was occupied by 
A. L Holmes' livery stable, built about 1882 when buckboard 
riding was the chief diversion of the summer guests at the hotels. 

150 Traditions and Rj^cords 

Some ten years later the building was moved to a site near the 
Methodist parsonage and a large hotel built to accommodate 
transient travellers. In those days traveling salesmen, spoken 
of as "drummers", came to show their samples to the merchants 
and make sales and the hotel was often filled with these men. 

A. I. Holmes' first store was on the site of the Village Green 
and was a typical country store containing almost everything 
that would be needed or desired by its patrons. It was a large 
oblong frame building of two and one half stories and some 
years after it was built, when trade was brisk, Mr. Holmes built 
an annex of equal size toward the west of the original store and 
this, too, was filled with goods of all kinds including groceries, 
hardware, clothing, crockery, harnesses, furniture, etc. 

On the site of the present Carroll building was a large house 
built in 1883 by John Crockett as a residence. This house 
changed hands several times after Mr. Crockett moved away 
and was used for years as a hotel. John Carroll was the owner 
and occupied it with his family when in March, 1922, the last 
named four buildings and the Odd Fellows building across the 
road were destroyed by a fire which started in the Holmes store 
and reduced five buildings to ashes. The following summer, Mr. 
Carroll replaced the house with the present building. 

The Salisbury building which now houses the local branch 
of the Bar Harbor Banking and Trust Company, the post office 
and a plumbing shop, was built by the late Archie R. Salisbury 
in 1933-4. 

The Holmes stable which had been moved to the rear of his 
other buildings was burned October 18, 1918 and several horses 
were also destroyed in the flames. 

The Odd Fellows building, built in 1896-7, was the largest 
in town with stores on the first floor, a dining room at the rear, 
offices on the second floor and lodge rooms on the third. This 
building with all the equipment of the Odd Fellow and Rebekah 
lodges and part of the contents of the stores and offices went up 
in flames with the other buildings on that March morning 1922. 

The present building was built during the winter of 1923, 
and is almost the same design as the first one except that the 
heavy hooded roof of the old building was replaced in the new 
design by a flat tar and gravel roof. 

Southwest Harbor 151 

Masonic Hall was built in 1875 by a stock company formed 
for the purpose. John D. Lurvey was the builder. The land was 
purchased from the Freeman family and John T. R. Freeman 
held the majority of the shares. In 1881 the building was sold 
to the Masonic lodge and the name of Tremont Hall changed to 
Masonic Hall. The lodge had the building raised and the stores 
made in the basement with other additions and improvements. 

This building has been closely connected with the life and 
development of the towTi. Town meetings, patriotic meetings, 
political rallies, dances and other amusements have been held 
within its walls and it is an important part of the business and 
social life of the community. It was saved during the fire of 
1922 by the almost superhuman efforts of the young men who 
fought the flames from the roof until the danger was passed. 

A Lovett family lived for some time in a small building near 
where the Methodist church now stands. Mrs. Lovett was from 
Ellsworth, a widow with three sons and a daughter. She mar- 
ried for a second husband, Michael O'Connor, a brother of John 
O'Connor. Later the family moved back to Ellsworth. The 
clearing where the house stood can still be traced. 

The two small cottages west of the church were built by 
Mrs. James Scott as an investment and have been occupied by 
many families. 

The Methodist church was built in 1888 during the pastorate 
of Wesley C. Haskell, then known as "the boy preacher." Reu- 
ben F. Lurvey was the builder. The Sunday School was or- 
ganized, August 4, 1889, with a membership of fifty-four. The 
school had a library of 245 volumes. The road to the church 
was named Wesley Avenue in honor of the young minister. 

The parsonage was built in 1897 by D. L. Mayo and the 
annex to the church in 1925-6. George Norwood built the build- 
ing on the south side of Wesley Avenue and left it in his will 
to Lawrence D. Phillips, whose property it now is. Eugene 
Robbins built his house in 1930 and Wesley Reed's was built 
in 1928. Ted Hancock built his house in 1934. Fred S. Mayo 
built his house in 1922-23 and his shop in 1926. The Cedars was 
built by Sylvester Brown, who lived there for some time before 
moving to Northeast Harbor and selling to Thomas Savage, 

152 Traditions and Records 

who sold to James Scott. Dudley L. Mayo built his house on 
the comer of the Main Road and Wesley Avenue in 1918-19. 

Sam Black's house opposite the church was built in the 
summer of 1937. 

Francis Young- built a camp on his lot above the church in 

The Freeman Cottage, now called The Ashmont, was built by 
J. A. Freeman in 1884-5. The Congregational Parish House was 
orig-inally the stable belonging to the cottage. When Isaac F. 
Stanley bought the property he had this building moved to its 
present location and some remodeling done and sold it to the 
Congregational church. 

On the site now occupied by the Ashmont, the blacksmith 
shop of James Freeman stood until it was taken down to make 
room for the new building. The old Freeman House which stood 
on the site now occupied by the home of Dr. J. D. Phillips, was 
built by John Clark, brother of Deacon H. H. Clark, about 1825. 
Mr. Clark died and his widow, Mrs. Margaret Richardson Clark, 
became the w^fe of James Freeman. Mr. Freeman built a large 
addition to the house to be used as a hotel. This was during the 
Civil War. While it was being finished and before the partitions 
were put in, many patriotic meetings were held there and it 
was also the scene of many a social gathering. It was for years 
a popular summer hotel and also attended to the needs of 
transient travellers in winter, under the capable management of 
Mr. Freeman's son, J. A. Freeman and wife. It was burned in 
February, 1894. In 1900 Dr. Phillips bought the land and built 
his house there. The small building to the east of the Phillips 
house was built by J. A. Freeman on the site where the parish 
house nov/ stands and it was used as a post-office while Mr. 
Freeman v/as postmaster. It has had many tenants and many 
uses ; it stood for a time between Dr. Phillips' house and the 
Freeman cottage and was occupied by Mrs. J. A. Freeman and 
daughter after the sale of the Cottage. Finally it was purchased 
by Dr. Phillips and moved to its present location to be used as 
living apartments for rental. 

Lawrence D. Phillips had his house built to the west of his 
father's house in 1931. 

The Freeman House which stood near the site of Dr. J. D. Philips 
residence. One of the f^rst summer hotels in Southwest Harbor. 

South we;st Harbor 153 

John Richardson, a tailor, built a building on the corner, on 
the site of the cottage now owned by the heirs of A. I. Holmes. 
This place had an important place in the life of the village in 
the early days. The first Masonic lodge meetings were held 
there and the upper part, reached by a flight of stairs across the 
front, was long used for the Custom House. The lower part 
was a store, conducted by the Freeman family for some time 
and then sold to A. I. Holmes. After Mr. Holmes built his new 
store this one was used as a storehouse until the cottage was 
built and the old building torn down. 

As has been stated, J. T. R. Freeman purchased the discarded 
schoolhouse about 1865, moved it to his lot, remodeled and added 
to it as his residence. He built a small building to the north 
which was used for a long time as a post-office while Mr. Free- 
man was postmaster. This building is now a part of the Free- 
man Store. About 1887 he built the present store building and 
enlarged his business which is now carried on by his daughter, 
Mrs. Fred A. Walls. 

A croquet ground was in front of the post-office building on 
the site where the store now stands and the townspeople enjoyed 
many a game with Mr. and Mrs. Freeman and their guests in 
the days when croquet was a popular diversion — a mild fore- 
runner of the athletics of the present day. 

Capt. Judson Robinson built the large two-story house that 
has always been owned and occupied by his family. This was 
about 1866. 

In 1892 Arthur L. Somes built the house where he now lives. 
His son, Raymond P. Somes, built his house in 1929. The small 
house on the A. I. Holmes property was built by Danforth 
Marcyes about 1876 and has been owned by several persons. 

Arthur T. Richardson built the house, which was his home 
for some years, in 1884 and it is now occupied by his daughter, 
Mrs. Leslie White and family. Arthur H. Freeman built his 
residence in 1903. Henry Tracy was the contractor and Arthur 
T. Richardson the foreman. The two summer cottages on the 
western side of this road were built by W. P. Dickey and Col. 
A. B. Farnham of Bangor about 1882 and were the first summer 
cottages to be built in Southwest Harbor or west of Bar Harbor. 

154 Traditions and RjecoRDS 

The Henry L. Gray house was begun by Henry Tracy as a 
residence for Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Hodgkins, who had pur- 
chased the land from J. A. Freeman. The cellar was just com- 
pleted and some of the lumber on the spot when Mr. Hodgkins 

Later, the property was purchased by Mr. Gray and the 
house built as his home. Work begun on it November 27, 1907, 
and the Grays moved in on February 10, 1908. Mr. Gray built 
the store to the south of his house in 1931. 

Dudley L. Mayo and his brother, Sim H. Mayo, built the 
next building about 1883-4 and carried on a carriage shop for 
some time under the name of Mayo Brothers. S. H. Mayo, who 
was a blacksmith, did the iron work and D. L. Mayo the wood 
work. They sold to John F. Young, whose son, Fred E. Young, 
still owns it and has a blacksmith shop there. 

The house south of the Young blacksmith shop was built in 
1887 by Dudley L. Mayo as a residence for himself and family. 
The following year his son Fred, then a boy about nine years 
of age, dug up two blue spruce trees in the woods back of the 
ice house and planted them on the lawn where they are still 
growing. Mr. Mayo sold the house to Benjamin Robinson, who 
moved there from his old home at the shore and he and his wife 
spent the remainder of their days there. After their death it 
became the property of Oscar Morrison and his wife, who cared 
for Mrs. Robinson in her last years. The Morrisons sold the 
place to Maurice Marshall, who was in business here and when 
the Marshalls moved to Ellsworth they sold to Raymond Reed, 
who now (1938) owns and occupies it. 

James Crockett built his house in the summer of 1904. Part 
of the material used in this house came from the Seawall House 
built at Seawall as a summer hotel, but used only a few seasons. 

The house where Mrs. S. H. Mayo lives was built in 1883 
by Mrs. Emily Herrick Higgins and her son, William Higgins. 
There was formerly an old house on this lot that was built by 
Joshua Mayo on the land north of Allen J. Lawler's house. 
Mr. Mayo sold it to James Robinson, who lived in it until his 
new home across the road was completed. In 1853 Seth Higgins 
purchased the house and moved it to his own lot a little to the 

Southwest Harbor 155 

north of the house now there. The Higgins family lived there 
many years until the new home was completed. After the tragic 
death of William Higgins by drowning and the subsequent death 
of his mother, the heirs sold the house to Mr. and Mrs. Sim H. 

The Lawler ice house was built by Benjamin Robinson, who 
also dug out the swamp near it making a pond, and established 
an ice business which he conducted for some years. After his 
death the business was purchased by Henry Tracy who carried 
it on for some time and then sold to Christopher Lawler who 
still owns and conducts it. 

The Eben F. Richardson house was built in 1883 by Hiram 
Houston who was killed by a fall from a building. His widow 
married Mr. Richardson and they continued to live there. 

The building south of this house was built about 1870 by 
James Robinson from lumber which had been a part of his 
smokehouse at the shore. His daughter Emily, afterward Mrs. 
Alton E, Farnsworth, had a millinery and dry goods store in 
the front part and Mr. Robinson sold groceries in the rear. For 
several years Mrs. Farnsworth was postmistress and had the 
post-office in her store. She was an excellent business woman, 
an interesting and witty conversationalist and her place of busi- 
ness was ever a resort for her friends who came for good advice 
or to pass a social hour. She was always ready to listen to an 
appeal for help and her many generous deeds were known only 
to herself and to those who received the benefit of them. Her 
early and sudden passing brought sorrow to a wide circle of 
friends and acquaintances. 

Elisha Crane built the small house near the shore in this 
locality, which was owned by Capt. Joseph Whitmore who died 
before he was thirty years old. His widow sold the place to 
Capt. Sans Whitmore, brother of her husband, and with her two 
children, went to Rockland to live. 

Capt. Sans lived there until the death of his wife and he then 
sold to Capt. Benjamin Robinson whose home it was for many 
years. His widow sold it to Alton Billings, who added another 
story to the house and made many changes and improvements. 
After the death of Mr. Billings it was sold to George Leighton 

156 Traditions and Records 

who now occupies it (1938) and who built a small building on 
the Main Road which he uses as a blacksmith shop. 

The small factory building nearby was built by Benjamin 
Robinson as a storehouse for the lumber in which he dealt for 
many years. After his death it was purchased by Allen J. 
Lawler who canned beans and clams there for several seasons. 
He finished the upper part into living rooms which have been 
occupied by many different families. 

The small cottage occupied now by Mr. and Mrs. C. W. 
Lawler was once a smoke house built by Benjamin Robinson. 
Later he finished the upper story as an apartment and here Mrs. 
Hannah Woodworth (afterwards Mrs. William L. Gilley) lived 
and had a milliner's shop. The building then stood down below 
the bank near its present site. Mr. Robinson moved it to the 
location it now occupies and his widow sold it to Allen J. Lawler. 

Mr. Lawler built his own residence about 1897. The James 
Robinson house was built about 1860. 

Returning now to the village comer and going toward the 
wharf at Clark Point — the building owned and occupied by the 
Jackson Market was originally A. L. Gilley's barber shop ; a small 
building which forms but a fraction of the present structure. It 
has been owned by several who have made changes and additions 
and greatly increased its size. 

The building that is now used as a restaurant was built in 
1883 by Dr. R. J. Lemont as a drug store and residence. The 
original building has been moved back and a new front added. 
Formerly the drug store was reached by a long flight of steps. 
It was about 1883 that Dr. Robert J. Lemont, who had been 
practising medicine in Southwest Harbor since 1880, established 
a drug store in the little Lurvey shop at the village corner. 
Later he built this building with a store and some of the family 
living rooms on the first floor and other living rooms above. 
Here he was in business until advancing years made it necessary 
for him to retire and the business was carried on by his daughter 
and her husband, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Ralph. They finally sold 
to John H. Montgomery after the store had been moved to the 
Holmes building at the head of Clark Point Road and where Mr. 
Ralph also conducted a restaurant. This building was destroyed 

Southwest Harbor 157 

by the great fire of March, 1922, and after John Carroll had built 
the present Carroll building, Mr. Montgomery moved his stock 
there, later selling to a Bar Harbor firm and in a few years they 
sold to William J. Tower. In 1929 Philip T. Carroll purchased 
the business of Mr. Tower and has since conducted it. 

The Lemont building has had several owners and is now the 
property of Sheldon Spurling who conducts a restaurant in the 
former store and occupies the living rooms. 

The adjoining building was built by Fred Ralph and the 
drug store was in it for a while. It is now owned by L. D, 
Newman and occupied by a barber shop. 

The store next door was built by Stephen Harmon in 1896 
and conducted as a general store by him for a few years. Then 
W. T. Holmes purchased the property and carried on the busi- 
ness for twenty years or more before selling to Fred Ralph and 
going west. 'Mr. Ralph also bought the residence on the next lot 
which Mr. Holmes built and lived in. He sold the store to Peter 
T. Benson and the house to Richard B. Jackson when he went to 
Texas to live. 

William J. Tower built the building east of the Jackson lot 
and he kept the post-ofifice there for a number of years. He sold 
to E. S. Thurston when 'Mr. Thurston took over the duties of 
postmaster and after his services of twelve years were past, the 
property was sold in 1936 to ]\Irs. Fred A. Birlem whose son, 
Wallace Birlem, built the double garage behind it with living 
rooms above which he occupies. 

Mr. Tower built his own house and the large building close 
by which he at first used as a stable and shop for painting 
carriages and later for his undertaking business and garage. 

Sylvester W. Dorr built the large, low shop on the next lot 
as a carpenter shop and later sold it to E. A. Lawler. It is now 
divided into two stores — one for the Lawler Paint Co. and the 
other for the Whitney Electrical store. An addition was built 
to the paint store in 1937. 

For many years after the old house on the corner of the 
Main and Clark Point roads was destroyed the stable remained, 
owned by P. L. Sargent who had a livery stable, and when horses 
and carriages became things of the past he kept automobiles for 

158 Traditions and Records 

hire. In 1936 he sold the lot to Richard B. Jackson who had 
the stable demolished, the Sargent house moved to the rear and 
a gasoline station and parking place constructed. 

John C. Ralph built a building on the first site of P. L. Sar- 
gent's house. This was partially destroyed by fire and the part 
that was saved was purchased by George Harmon and now forms 
a part of the Harmon building on the Main Road. Seth W. Nor- 
wood bought the land and built the present building as a law 
office, selling it later to Mr. Sargent who has made additions and 

R. M. Norwood built his carpenter shop in 1916. The Gilley 
and Salisbury plumbing shop was at first built by George H. 
Gilley on his lot near his home on the Main Road and was used 
there as a plumber's shop for some years. Then it was moved 
to its present situation and in 1929 it was moved to the rear of 
the lot and the show rooms and upstairs living apartment were 
built. Mr. Gilley's grandson, Wendell H. Gilley, now carries on 
the business. 

Moore's Garage was built in 1918-19. R. M. Norwood was 
the builder. On Saturday, January 21, 1933, at about 4.30 P.M. 
an explosion occurred in the rear of the garage and in an instant 
the flames were filling the wooden building, which was entirely 
destroyed with about fifty cars stored there. Excellent work by 
the fire department saved the buildings on either side. As soon 
as the debris could be cleared away a new company was formed, 
the Southwest Harbor Motor Company, with J. E. Wass and his 
two sons as the active partners and the present brick structure 
was erected and ready for business when the next season opened. 

The E. A. Lawler house was built about 1902 by William 
Wallace, who sold it to Mr. Lawler. E. L. Higgins built the 
house east of the Lawler place in 1884 and planted the trees 
around the lot. In 1925 he sold the place to Mrs. Fred Wescott 
and remodeled a small building on Maple Lane which he owned 
into the cottage where he and his wife now (1938) spend their 

Mr. and Mrs. G. D. Atherton built their house on Maple Lane 
about 1905. After Mr. Atherton died his widow sold the place to 
Peter T. Benson (1937), who moved the buildings to a lot on the 

Southwest Harbor 159 

Clark Point Road and sold to Russell White. The Atherton lot 
was then purchased by the town as a part of the school lot 
and the site of the new high school building. 

The Congregational parsonage was built by Adelbert O. 
Gilley and was the home of Mr. and Mrs. Gilley and their family 
for many years. It was purchased by the Ladies Aid of the 
Congregational church in 1914. 

Charles Carroll built his house in 1932 and added to it in 
1936. The cottage to the north of the Carroll house was built 
by D. L. Mayo about 1890 as a stable to the west of the house 
now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Leslie White. It was moved to its 
present site about 1895 after being purchased by Mr. and Mrs. 
William Holmes and built over into a dwelling house and they 
lived there for some years. After Mr. and Mrs. Holmes moved 
to her father's house to care for her parents, this house was 
rented to different families and was sold about 1928 to Frank 
Foss who now occupies it. 

South of the parsonage is the small cottage owned by Mr. 
and Mrs. E. L. Higgins and south of that is the house built by 
Mrs. Marion Newman Wescott in 1934 and now occupied by 

The William Herrick house was built partly from lumber 
from the first Herrick house adjoining the Jacob Lurvey place 
to the west of the Main Road as one enters the village. This 
was the home of the Herrick family for many years and after 
the death of their parents, William and Asa Herrick tore down 
the old house and rebuilt it on its present site. The great 
syringa bush in the yard was brought from the old home. At 
the death of William Herrick the place became the property of 
his nephew and namesake who now lives there. 

E. S. Thurston's residence was built by William Mayo who 
lived there for a time. It has been owned by several different 

E. L. Higgins built a blacksmith shop on the site now occu- 
pied by the Worcester store building and he carried on his work 
there for many years. He sold it to be used as a livery stable 
and it was destroyed by fire. Then Mr. Higgins bought back 
the land and built a store there for his son, Fred J. Higgins. 

160 Traditions and Re;cords 

After he went out of business and moved away, the building 
was sold to B. C. Worcester who remodeled it somewhat and the 
upper part is now living apartments while the lower floor is used 
by the public schools at present as a place for the classes in 
Domestic Science (1938). 

Leon Higgins bought the house east of the Herrick place 
from William Lloyd Carroll who had bought it from S. H. Mayo 
and carried on a grocery store and meat market for some years. 
It then stood on the lot opposite the Capt. Jacob Mayo place. 
S. H. Mayo built it as a blacksmith and bicycle shop and later 
it had a variety of uses — tea room, residence, drygoods store, 
office, etc., until Mr. Higgins purchased it and moved it to its 
present site. 

Edward McLean in 1885 built the house now owned by B. C. 
Worcester and occupied by him as his home. Mr. McLean died 
and his widow sold the place to Henry Tracy whose home it was 
for more than thirty years ; he selling to Mr. Worcester on 
retiring from business after the death of Mrs. Tracy. 

John C. Ralph built the house now occupied by Mr. and Mrs. 
Rufus Trundy. Mr. Ralph moved to Connecticut and sold the 
house to John H. Montgomery, who came here from Bucksport 
and conducted a drug store for several years. Mr. Montgomery 
sold his business and moved back to his former home at Bucks- 
port, selling the house to Mrs. Margaret Bennett, then of Rhode 
Island, who is the present owner. The adjoining buildings are 
those moved from Maple Lane and owned by Russell White. 

Mrs. Maud Gilley's house was built in 1906 by her husband, 
Frank Gilley, who died in 1919. The adjoining house was built 
in 1929 by S. S. Dolliver for Howard E. Robinson and the next 
one to the east was built by Mr. Dolliver for Mrs. Josephine 

The house at the top of the hill was built about 1857 by Capt. 
Jacob S. Mayo. His daughter, Mrs. Lizzie Mayo Holmes, owned 
it for about forty years and after her death it was sold to Har- 
vard Beal, who in 1935 moved it back from the road and made 
some changes in the interior. The lot on which the house stands 
was part of the tract containing 270 acres, which was purchased 
by Rev. Ebenezer Eaton in 1803 when he came to settle at South- 

South WE^sT Harbor 161 

west Harbor and serve as pastor of the Congregational church. 
Elder Eaton lived in a house at the foot of the hill. There was 
no road leading to the wharf and when Capt. Mayo built his 
house it was expected that the new road would go around the 
hill instead of over it, so Capt. Mayo built his house facing the 
south and expecting to face the road. When the route of the 
highway was at last designated, it led over the hill, so for many 
years the house stood directly back to the road until Mr. Beal 
bought it and made the alterations. 

Watson Herrick built his house about 1862. The ell was a 
part of the first Herrick house. It is now owned by his daugh- 
ter, Miss Myra Herrick. A store was carried on in the ell for 
some time by Mr. Herrick. 

The house adjoining was built by Capt. Levi Robinson in 
1838. His wife died a few years after, leaving him with a 
family of young children. He sold the place to Capt. James 
Long whose life was spent there and in 1900 it was bought from 
his heirs by Mrs. Jacob W. Carroll. It remained in the Carroll 
family for twenty-five years and was then sold to Schuyler R. 
Clark whose property it is at present. The road leading past 
this place and known as the High Road was laid out in 1881. It 
was stipulated that the highway should be "sixteen feet from 
any building on the road" and this determines the course of the 
way as the Long house was the only one on the road at that time. 
There was originally a barn standing to the east of the house 
which long since disappeared. The original layout of the High 
Road states that it is forty feet in width. 

Phillip T. Carroll's house was built in 1932-3 and they moved 
in April 26, 1933. R. M. Norwood's was built in 1924-5. 

Earll Gott's house has had a varied history. It was begun 
on the Fernald Point Road, west of the Country Club house by 
Benjamin Gilley. His wife died before it was completed and he 
sold the house to Frank Higgins. Mr. Higgins never finished it 
and in 1883 he sold it to S. W. Herrick, who moved it to the junc- 
tion of the Clark Point and High Roads and used it as a store for 
thirty-five years or more. After Mr. Herrick's death, his daugh- 
ter sold the building to Earll Gott who moved it to his lot on 
the High Road where he occupies it as a home, having entirely 
remodeled and improved it. 

162 Traditions and Records 

Mrs. Seth S. Thornton built her house in 1922 and Carl E. 
Kelley's cottage was also built in 1922. The land where the Car- 
roll, Norwood and Thornton houses stand was a part of the James 
Long property. William Herrick once started to build a house 
on what is now Mrs. Thornton's lawn. The cellar was partly 
dug when he changed his mind and bought the house on the 
Main Road of Seth Higgins, his brother-in-law, which he owned 
for many years. The half-finished cellar remained as it was 
left until the Thornton house was built. Mrs. Thornton moved 
into her house on December 24, 1922. 

The lot for the Congregational church was purchased from 
Deacon H. H. Clark, and ground was broken for the foundation 
on the morning of Tuesday, October 9, 1883. The church at 
Tremont, which was then a part of this parish, was also begun 
about this time. James T. Clark was master builder of both 
churches. The foundation of the Southwest Harbor church 
was completed and the building raised and closed in before the 
cold weather. 

It was to be a Union church for all denominations. The 
Fourth of July of the following summer the sewing circle mem- 
bers held a strawberry festival in the building to raise money 
for its completion. Rev. Amos Redlon had accepted the call to 
the Congregational parish beginning in June of 1884. The 
church was completed during that summer and the following 
winter, and it was dedicated September 9, 1885. Rev. Oliver 
H. Femald preached the first sermon within its walls before the 
dedication. A newspaper of 1884 tells us that the Ladies Benev- 
olent Society placed the sum of $889.80 in the church treasury 
for the purchase of church furniture and Rev. Amos Redlon was 
entrusted with the commission to make the purchase, which he 
did and the newspaper account says that "the report being 
eminently satisfactory to the society, it was accepted and a vote 
of thanks tendered to Mr. Redlon for the prompt and ef^cient 
manner in which he had invested the funds." The society then 
bent their energies toward buying a furnace, which object was 
accomplished before the year was out. 

The first donation toward a new bell for the edifice was 
received from a summer visitor, Capt. Connor of Seabright, 

Southwest Harbor 163 

N. Y., who sailed into the harbor in his yacht while the process 
of building was going on and wrote later to Rev. A. Redlon to 
ask how the church was progressing and what were its needs. 
Mr. Redlon replied as to the situation and received from Capt. 
Connor $25 toward a bell for the building and this was pur- 
chased and put into position in 1887. The plastering of the 
church was done by Capt. J. W. Carroll and it was first painted 
by Horace Stanley. It was the first week in August, 1885, that 
Mr, Redlon went to Boston to buy the carpet and pulpit furni- 
ture for the new church. In September of the same year, Mrs. 
Redlon presented the large Bible which is now used on the 
pulpit. A Miss MacNaughton who was a summer visitor at the 
Dirigo, made and presented an embroidered bookmark which is 
still used in the Bible. A newspaper dated August, 1885, says, 
"the church was occupied for the first time after the establish- 
ment of the new pews, pulpit furniture and all complete on Sun- 
day morning, August 8th. Sermon by Rev. Applebee of the 
Methodist society, assisted by Prof. Fernald of Orono College 
and Mr. Ingalls of the Center, Evening service by Rev. O. H. 

As has been stated the dedication took place on September 
9th. The plates for the offering were given by Mrs. Jesse H. 
Pease. A newspaper paragraph of December, 1884, says : "The 
meeting house quilt, on which $100 has been raised toward the 
new Congregational church, was sent as a Christmas gift to Rev. 
and Mrs. A. N. Jones at Phippsburg, Maine." Mr. Jones had 
previously been pastor of the church here. 

Ferdinand Reed built his house in 1932-3. Raymond P. 
Brotemarkle was the builder. 

The cottage opposite the church was built by Robert Kaighn 
in 1913. Fred E. Young built his house in 1907 and has made 
several additions since that time. His cottage east of the church 
was built in 1919-20. He moved his family into the house, which 
he now occupies, on January 16, 1908. 

The cottage on the comer of the High Road and Causeway 
Lane was built at the Back Shore by William Cram as a summer 
home for himself and family, Mr. Cram sold it to S. R. Clark 
who moved it to its present location and remodeled it. It has 

164 Traditions and Records 

had several owners and is now (1938) the property of the heirs 
of Prof. Harry L. Koopman of Providence, R. I. 

The next cottage on Causeway Lane was built in 1917 for 
Mr. and Mrs. Frank W. Garrison, who occupy it summers. Next 
comes the cottage built in 1922-3 for the Misses Conant of 
Natick, Mass., and Wellesley. Across the lane is the house built 
in 1926-7 for Mrs. Julia R. Whittier and her sister, Miss Cornelia 
Long of Lakewood, N. J. At the end of Causeway Lane are 
the houses of Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Davids of Merion, Pa., 
(1923-4), of Mr. and Mrs. William P. Brigham of Providence, 
R. L, (1919), of Mrs. Charlotte R. Potter of New York (1926) 
and of Miss Jessie K. Hayt (1928) also of New York. 

Percy R. Zeigler's cottage was built in 1936-7. 

Artemas Richardson built his house on the High Road in 

The Hotel Dirigo was built about 1881 for Cummings 
Holden, who conducted it as a popular summer hotel for some 
years. An item in a newspaper of 1884 speaks of the excellence 
of the meals served at the Dirigo and the courtesy of Mr. and 
Mrs. Holden, who were ever solicitous for the comfort of their 
guests. After the death of Mr. Holden, his nephew, S. R. Clark, 
took over the management of the house and built a large addition 
to the original building. This was done in part with lumber 
from the Seawall House at Seawall v/hich had proved to be too 
far from the village for popularity and was torn down after a 
few seasons. Mr. Clark was ever popular with his guests and 
the house was always filled for the season. In 1923 the place 
was purchased by Leslie S. King, whose heirs now own and con- 
duct it as a summer hotel. 

The two cottages in the woods to the east of the Dirigo were 
built in 1925-6 by Fred S. Mayo for Mrs. Loren B. T. Johnson 
of Washington, D. C. The one nearest the shore was later sold 
to Dr. and Mrs. William E. Clark of Washington who spend 
their summers there. The other one is rented to different 

The stone and wood cottage at the end of Kinfolks Road was 
built about 1892 for Robert Kaighn of Philadelphia, whose 
daughter, Mrs. Walter S. Maclnnes, now owns it. It was com- 

SouTHwi^sT Harbor 165 

pletely remodeled in 1929 and is one of the fine summer homes 
of the place. Sutherlands, the Inman cottage, was built in 1901 
and the cottage now owned by Mrs. Joseph Cooper of Philadel- 
phia was built for Mr. Kaighn in 1900 and later sold to Mrs. 

Fox Dens, the cottage owned by Mr. and Mrs. H. L. Rand, 
was among the earliest to be built at the Mill Dam in 1884. 
Squirrelhurst, the large cottage owned by the Misses Underwood 
of Boston, was built about 1901. 

S. R. Clark bought the little cottage which was built about 
1885 by Prof. Samuel Downs at the Back Shore. He moved it 
to his lot nearby and rebuilt it, adding considerable to it. Prof, 
and Mrs. Downs were among the early summer residents of 
Southwest Harbor and their cottage was among the first to be 
built. Mrs. Downs was the founder of the public library in 
Southwest Harbor and was a writer of considerable ability, 
being the author of stories, poems and magazine articles of note. 
She contributed to the "Flora of Mount Desert" written by Prof. 
Rand in the eighties. 

M. W. Wilder's summer home was built in 1924. The place 
now owned by E. R. Underwood was built in the spring of 1908 
for Mrs. Emily Rogers and at her death it became the property 
of the present owner. 

Leon E. Higgins' house was built about 1892 for Shepley 
Stanley, who moved from town a few years after and sold the 
place to Mr. Higgins. 

The Gott homestead on the east side of Dirigo Road, was 
built by a Mr. FitzGibbons. It was owned and occupied at one 
time by Edwin Clark, son of Deacon H. H. Clark. His widow, 
afterwards Mrs. James Ross, sold it to Capt. Robert Gott in 1876 
and his family have owned it ever since as their home. 

Mr. and Mrs. Fred Fernald built their home in 1900. Wil- 
liam Lawton built the next house as his residence in 1883, 
moving in on October 16 of that year. Five years later they 
sold the house to Rev. George E. Street, author of Street's His- 
tory of Mount Desert. The next house was built by Frank 
Eaton about 1883. He lived there only a short time and sold to 
Prof. Carl von Gaertner of Philadelphia, who had long been a 

166 Traditions and Records 

summer resident in Southwest Harbor. After the death of Mr. 
and Mrs. Gaertner, their son Louis and his friend, Prof. Orr, 
both musicians of a high order, spent their summers in the house 
and finally it was sold to Dr. John T. Reeve of Syracuse, N. Y., 
as a summer home. 

After William Lawton sold his house to Dr. Street, he bought 
the lot next the present Reeve cottage and built another house 
in which the family lived for a number of years. He finally sold 
it to James N. Stanley as a summer home. 

The Road cottage and the Shore cottage, were both built by 
Fred S. Mayo in 1924-5 for Mrs. Loren Johnson, and she rents 
them during the summer season. 

The "Island House Cottage" as it used to be called, was built 
in 1870 as an annex to the Island House, the property of Deacon 
H. H. Clark. It has had several owners and is now owned by 
Mr. and Mrs. Milton W. Norwood whose home it is. 

Across the road to the east of this house is Cedarcroft, first 
built at the junction of the Dirigo and Clark Point Roads as a 
store for James F. Ross. It had several owners and at last was 
purchased by Miss Alice M. Clark of Augusta, who had it moved 
to its present location where it has undergone much remodeling 
and is now an attractive summer home and is owned by Mrs. 
Howard Cooper Johnson of Philadelphia, whose mother, Mrs, 
George Lamb, owned it and spent many seasons there. 

James F. Ross built his house in 1875-6. It was owned for 
some years by Miss Alice M. Clark and sold in 1935 to Maynard 
Closson, who now lives there. 

R. P. Clark's house was built in 1897 by Edwin A. Clark, 
whose wife died a few years later and he sold the house to his 
brother who has occupied it ever since. Nathan Clark built the 
house to the south about 1870. It was the home of Capt. and 
Mrs. Clark during their lives and was left by will to their grand- 
children who now own it. 

Henry Clark built his house in 1871. The builders were 
Wallace and George H. Coggins of Lamoine, Mrs. Clark's father 
and brother. It has always been owned in the Clark family and 
now belongs to Mrs. O. W. Cousins, niece of Mr. Clark. The 
next house to the south was built by William G. Parker a few 

Southwest Harbor 167 

years earlier. It is now owned by the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. 
Parker, Dr. Mary C. Parker of Gloucester, Mass. 

The house across the road from the Parker place is also the 
property of Dr. Parker. This was first built at the head of the 
harbor as a residence for Jonathan Brown. After his death his 
widow sold the house to Deacon Gark, who had it brought to 
its present situation and rebuilt to be used as living quarters 
for his employees who worked in the nearby shipyard. Henry 
Newman occupied it first when the schooner Kate Newman was 
being built. It has been rented to many families. 

A workshop stood for many years on the shore side of the 
road almost opposite the above mentioned house. Many differ- 
ent families occupied the living apartment on the second floor. 
Work for the shipyard was done in the shop on the first floor. 

The shipyard was a busy place for many years and many 
small vessels and boats were constructed there. 

For many years Indians from Oldtown came every summer 
and encamped on the rocky lot across from the Parker property. 
They pitched their tents and remained for the summer, selling 
their baskets. The men roamed the woods gathering sweet 
grass and occasionally cutting an ash tree, which right they 
were vouchsafed by the owners of the land as it was an unwrit- 
ten law that the Indians could have an occasional tree to use in 
their work from the land that, not so long before, had belonged 
entirely to them. They were quiet, law-abiding neighbors and 
the encampment was one of the picturesque sights of the town. 
When in 1925 George A. Rhoads of Wilmington, Delaware, built 
his house on the camp site, he called it Indian Lot. The next 
house was built in 1903 by Augustus Clark who, when he retired 
from business, sold it to Jesse N. Mills (1923). 

The old Clark house on the adjoining lot, now owned and 
occupied by Augustus Clark, is one of the oldest in town. It was 
built in 1816 and in 1820 it was the only house in the settlement 
having a plastered room. Its builder and owner was Nathan 
Clark, ancestor of all the Clarks in this vicinity, and it has 
always been owned by the family. Three generations have made 
it their home. Nathan Clark's first log house was near the site 
of Dr. Mary C. Parker's house. 

168 Traditions and Records 

Nathan Clark's son, Seth H. Clark, in 1846 built the large 
house to the east of his father's place, moved to it in October of 
that year, and made his home there for his lifetime. It then 
passed to his son, Clarence Clark, who lived there until 1926 
when he sold the place to A. B. Smith of Milton, Mass., who has 
used it as a summer home and now (1938) plans to make it his 
permanent residence. The house has undergone several changes 
and additions. The name, Willowfield, will long be associated 
for many of us, with Rev. and Mrs. George D. Latimer, of 
Boston, who occupied it as a summer home for many seasons. 

Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Clark now live in the house which 
was begun in 1916 for Donald K. Mayo and completed by Mrs. 
Grace Clark Pease as a home for herself. She occupied it but 
a short time before her death, leaving it by will to her brothers 
and later Mr. Clarence Clark bought the interest of his brother 
and made it his home. 

The Burke cottage was built in 1913 by Charles Burke of 
New Jersey as a summer home for himself and his sisters and 
they occupied it every summer for some years. It is now owned 
by their heirs. "The Moorings" as it is called, has one of the 
loveliest situations in the town commanding a fine view of Somes 
Sound, the harbor and the hills. 

The Claremont Hotel was built in 1883-4 by Capt. Jesse H. 
Pease and was opened to guests in the summer of '84. After 
the death of Capt. Pease in 1900, his wife successfully conducted 
the hotel for some seasons and then sold to Dr. J. D. Phillips, 
who, with his son, Lawrence D. Phillips, now conducts it as a 
summer hostelry. Some years after acquiring it Dr. Phillips 
purchased the Pemetic Hotel or "The Castle" as it was some- 
times called, a building which Deacon Clark erected about 1878 
as a rooming house in connection with his summer hotel. This 
stood in the woods across the road and east of the Island Cot- 
tage. It was moved to the Claremont lot and made a part of 
the hotel. Dr. Phillips has greatly enlarged and improved the 
hotel during his ownership and it has always been a popular 
place, commanding as it does a splendid view of Somes Sound 
and the harbor, with the hills in the background. The fiftieth 
anniversary of the hotel was observed in 1934 with interesting 

South wE^ST Harbor 169 

Taking the summer residences at the Back Shore, south from 
the Maclnnes place; the Howard Cooper Johnson cottage was 
built in 1920-21 and Miss Jessie Tatlock's cottage in 1921. The 
house now owned by the Misses Helen and Mabel Ray was built 
by D. L. Mayo in 1901 for Rev. and Mrs. Goodwin, who occupied 
it as a summer home for some years. Miss Alice Fowler bought 
it and later sold to the Ray family and built another house for 
herself nearby. Loring L. Marshall's house was built by R. M. 
Norwood in 1922-23. It was purchased in 1935 by Dr. and Mrs. 
Tracy Mallory of Boston. James N. Stanley's new cottage at 
the shore was built in 1925. 

A. W. Bee bought land at the Back Shore and about 1884 
he built a small cottage there. When he gave up his business in 
Southwest Harbor after spending several seasons at the cottage, 
he sold to Mr. and Mrs. Henry Prentiss of Bangor and they sold 
to B. H. Grundy of Richmond, Virginia. This house has been 
enlarged and improved. 

About 1896 the Cooper family of Philadelphia built the large 
stone house to the east of the Dirigo Road and they spent many 
summers there. After the death of the older members of the 
family, the house fell into disrepair and was unused for many 
years. It is now owned by Mrs. Marion Rogers, a member of 
the Cooper family, and was repaired in 1937-8. 

Miss Alice Wetherbee of New Bedford, Mass., had her cot- 
tage, Turn in the Road, built on Winding Lane in the fall of 
1916. The larger of the two cottages at the entrance of Ledge 
Road was built by Mr. Christian Febiger in 1907 and the smaller 
one across the Ledge Road was built for him in the fall of 1916. 
Dr. Loren B. T. Johnson of Washington, D. C, has a cottage 
on the shore which has been improved from time to time. It 
was built in 1915. Allston Sargent of New York had a log cabin 
built in 1923 and he also has another small cottage near the 
Claremont Hotel. 

Ledgemere, the summer home of Mrs. Frederic Schoff of 
Philadelphia, was built in 1924; Abenaki, the summer home of 
Dr. and Mrs. Charles H. Cutler of Waban, Mass., in 1913 and 
Wild Rose Cottage, the summer home of Dr. Charles H. Grand- 
gent of Cambridge, Mass., was built in 1921-2. 

170 Traditions and Records 

Mr. and Mrs. Frank N. Lewis of Indianapolis, Indiana, built 
their cottage, Halfacre, in 1923 and Robert T. Mickle of German- 
town, Pa., had his cottage, Byfield, built in 1925. Mr. Mickle 
has also purchased the building to the west of his cottage which 
was built many years ago as a grocery store by Augustus Clark 
who was in business there for a long time and he also had a 
bowling alley connected with the store when bowling was a 
popular sport among the summer population. Ripley Cutler 
built his cottage to the east of the Lewis house in 1932. 

About 1894 Augustus Clark built the barn on the eastern side 
of the Clark Point road leading to the steamboat wharf. Here, 
during the times when buckboard riding was the chief amuse- 
ment of the tourists, he kept his horses and vehicles. Mr. Clark 
was fond of horses and always drove a good one. About 1930 
he sold the land and building to Robert T. Mickle, retaining the 
use of the barn during his lifetime. 

Henry Clark and William G. Parker started in business about 
1861 in a small building on the south side of the Clark Cove. 
During the time when the mackerel fishing was at its height and 
the harbor was frequently fairly crowded with vessels, this store 
was a popular place for outfitting the supply of food for these 
vessels, and ship stores were carried in stock also. Almost 
everything could be found in the stock of a general country 
store of that time and this one was no exception. The trade 
from the adjoining islands, too, was a considerable item and the 
firm of Clark and Parker was a prosperous one. They were also 
agents for some of the steamboat lines that made landings at 
the wharf and also the headquarters of the American Express 
Company for many years. The business so increased that in 
1885 they built the building which Henry Clark later sold to the 
J. N. Mills Co. The old store was used as a storehouse until 
1928 when it was sold to E. M. Davenport of Milton, Mass., who 
has had it remodeled into a unique and attractive summer home. 

One of the garages on the eastern side of the road was built 
in 1937-8 for Gordon and White. The other was built by Sim 
H. Mayo who sold it to the Southwest Harbor Motor Company 
who enlarged it considerably to accommodate their summer 

Southwest Harbor 171 

The boat shop now owned and operated by Henry Hinckley 
was built by Sim H. Mayo who sold to Andrew E. Parker and 
he to Chester E. Clement. After Mr. Clement's death in 1937 
it was purchased by Mr. Hinckley. 

In 1884 A. W. Bee, whose summer home was at the Back 
Shore and whose stationery and confectionery store at Bar Har- 
bor was a popular place with an increasing business, built a 
building on the rocky hill of land near what is now the Mills 
Store. Here, for some years was a place where the current 
magazines, newspapers, stationery and souvenirs were sold and 
it was the first "ice cream parlor" in the town. It did a thriving 
business in the summer months and was a popular gathering 
place all through the summer season until it was burned about 
1909. Bradley of Bar Harbor built a photograph saloon on the 
north side of Bee's building and here tintypes as well as "card" 
and "cabinet" size photographs were taken for several years 
until it went up in flames with the Bee establishment. Dr. 
George A. Neal was the photographer in charge for several 
summer vacations while he was attending medical school. 

The J. N. Mills Company established the coal business at 
their wharf near their store. "The Gangplank", the little cottage 
on the beach owned by two Boston ladies, was originally a store- 
house as was also the next building which was purchased by 
Fred Fernald of the Henry Clark estate and made over into a 
comfortable place for his lobster business. After the death of 
Mr. Femald the property and business were purchased by Capt. 
B. R. Simmons who sold to Harvard Beal in 1937. 

The small building by the side of the store once owned by 
Augustus Clark and now used as a freight and express office by 
R. P. Clark, was where the Custom House was kept for a number 
of years while it was carried on by Seth H. Clark. It now be- 
longs with the rest of that property to Mr, Mickle. 

The steamboat wharf was built in the early fifties by Deacon 
H. H. Clark and for a long time Southwest Harbor was the only 
place on Mount Desert Island where steamboats from Boston 
made a landing. A letter printed in a magazine in those early 
days, describing the beauties of the island, tells of landing at 
Southwest Harbor from the Boston boat, spending the night at 

172 Traditions and Records 

Deacon Clark's and taking an all-day ride by team to Bar Har- 
bor where a resident of that town gave them hospitable treat- 
ment for a few days. 

The steamer Rockland was the first on the route and her first 
landing at the new wharf was made a gala day for the com- 
munity. A band from Ellsworth furnished music for the occa- 
sion, flags were displayed and speeches made by residents and 
some from out of town who were present for the occasion. The 
boat saluted as she entered the harbor and from that day the 
whistles of the boats of the Eastern Steamship Company were 
heard with more or less frequency, echoing back from the hills 
north of Southwest Harbor, until 1934 when the boats were 
withdrawn and the route discontinued. The agents for the boats 
were always members of the Clark family beginning with Dea- 
con Clark, and his brother, Seth H. Clark, passing to his son 
Henry and to Augustus Clark and finally to R. P. Clark of the 
third generation who served for many years as boat agent and 
express official. 

A lobster factory stood close to the wharf, built in the early 
fifties by William Underwood and Co. of Boston, and lobsters 
were canned there for many years. The factory was built with 
the idea of canning beef, and cattle were driven down to South- 
west Harbor from a wide area where they were slaughtered and 
the meat canned. The supply of cattle soon failed and attention 
was turned to the canning of lobsters, which at that time were 
abundant, even to be picked up along the beaches. Employment 
was furnished for many people in town and the industry flour- 
ished. Several men came from Boston when the factory was 
first built, to instruct the local men in the art of making the tin 
cans and canning the product. About 1883 when the summer 
tourists began to come to Mount Desert in great numbers and 
every boat in early summer brought crowds of passengers for 
Southwest and Bar Harbors, objections began to be made to the 
factory and its odor. Discussion waxed hot on both sides ; one 
pointing out the amount of money brought into the place by the 
employment furnished by the factory and the other side clamor- 
ing that the future of Mount Desert was a summer resort and 
that the odoriferous factory, placed directly on the steamboat 

Southwest Harbor 173 

wharf, which was the only way of arrival at Southwest Harbor, 
was a deterrent to the growth and development of the town. 
Letters from both sides were published in the Mount Desert 
Herald and it was a fruitful subject for discussion at any place 
of gathering by both permanent and summer residents. Finally 
the Underwood Company wished to enlarge their plant and Dea- 
con H. H. Clark, who owned the adjoining land and who also 
owned and conducted the principal summer hotel of that time, 
refused to sell. So the Underwood Company bought land at 
McKinley, built a new and modern factory and moved to that 
place. The old building at the wharf stood for many years, 
closed and falling to pieces until it was taken down in 1932. 
In 1935 the heirs of Henry Clark sold the steamboat wharf to 
the United States Government to be used as a lighthouse supply 
and buoy station. Considerable work was done in the autumn 
of 1935 in enlarging the wharf and building new storehouses, 
etc., and buoys are cleaned and painted there. 

At the time the canning factory at the wharf was built, a 
Mr. Fairbum came from Boston with a crew of men to install 
the equipment for canning and to teach the process to local men. 
He brought with him four glass lamps for burning kerosene, 
the first to be seen in Southwest Harbor. He used them in his 
office and his room and when he left he sold two of them to 
Deacon Clark, one to William Lawton, who came from Boston 
to be manager of the new factory, and one to William Lawler. 
He also sold the gallon of oil which he had left — one quart for 
each lamp at one dollar a quart. 

The lamps were considered a great advance in lighting and 
the neighbors came to enjoy the unaccustomed brilliance and 
soon to purchase like lamps for themselves. Previously the 
lighting in use in the homes was that of candles made of tallow 
in the old-time candle molds which each house possessed, and in 
some homes "fluid lamps", shaped like the Greek emblems of 
wisdom or like modern gravy boats. If emergency demanded it 
a feeble light could be obtained from a wick floating in a saucer 
of melted tallow. 

The Lawler family have their lamp now in their possession. 

174 Traditions and Records 

William Lawton built the house on the Clark Point Road 
opposite the Island Cottage in 1910 and Mr. and Mrs. Lawton 
moved into it on June 23rd of that summer. He also built the 
building at the shore on the same lot and there he canned fish 
and clams for some years. After the death of Mrs. Lawton in 
1929 the place was sold to Robert G. Crocker of New York 
who has made extensive changes and additions and uses it as a 
summer home. Mrs. Lawton conducted a very successful tea 
room in her home for some years and it was a popular gathering 
place for the summer residents from all over the island. The 
little shop at the shore was taken down in 1936. 

Miss Reeve and Miss Fisher built their cottage in 1920. 
Andrew E. Parker's house was built in 1915 with Charles E. 
Stanley of Manset as contractor and builder. The Lindens, the 
home of Capt. and Mrs. O. L. Mills, was built in 1902 on land 
purchased from the H. H. Clark estate. Dudley L. Mayo was 
the contractor and builder. 

The Island House, owned by Deacon Henry H. Clark, was the 
first summer hotel on Mount Desert Island. Deacon Clark began 
the hotel business by taking into his hospitable home the first 
occasional tourists who came to the island for a short stay. He 
gradually enlarged his house until in 1885 it was entirely re- 
modeled and did a thriving business, employing many of the 
townspeople during the summer season. After his death the 
building was purchased by S. R. Clark who took it down and 
built two houses from the material. The Episcopal rectory is 
one of those houses and the residence of Rev. W. L. Woolsey 
is the other. Part of the Woolsey house is the original Clark 
house. The rooms have much of the old woodwork and doors, 
the mantels and the old fireframe that was in the Island House 
parlor. The front door, too, is the same through which the 
Island House guests passed for many years, 

J. E. Wass bought his house from Harry L. Lawton for 
whom it was built in 1897. Fred Robinson bought his place 
from Joseph Parker who had it built about 1876. The building 
now owned by Mrs. Alma Savage Seavey was built by Alonzo 
Hodgdon in 1886 as a store. He was in business there for 
several years. In 1883 Amos Brown built for himself the large 

Island House about 1875. 

Southwest Harbor 175 

house now the property of Thomas Seavey. It has had several 
owners during its existence. William D. Stanley's cottage was 
built in the summer of 1928. The house now owned and occu- 
pied by Clifford Robbins and family was built about 1888 for 
Lyman Stanley. Frank Johnson built his house in 1929. The 
house now owned by Mrs. Howard Mayo was built in 1918 for 
Thomas Savage. Fred A. Birlem's house was built in 1883 for 
Hosea Hodgdon. 

The small building across the road was once a waiting room 
on a boat landing at Bar Harbor. One very cold winter it was 
carried out to sea by the ice and salvaged by someone who 
brought it into Southwest Harbor where it was purchased by 
Edward McKay and hauled up on the bank on the lot where it 
now stands and which belonged to Mr. McKay. In 1937 it was 
sold to Rev. Milton Hess of New York to be used as a summer 

The house now owned by Richard T. Carroll was built by 
Rufus McKay about 1878 and the McKay family lived there for 
many years. Then it became the property of Mr. and Mrs. Bert 
Robinson and after Mr. Robinson's death his widow sold to Mr. 
Carroll. Mrs. Robinson owned a small house to the west of this 
place, once an addition to the McKay house and in 1933-4 she 
had that building remodeled and enlarged into a house for her- 
self where she lived until her death in 1937. 

Howe D. Higgins built his house in 1923. 

Capt. B. R. Simmons had his house built in 1932 by Fred S. 
Mayo. Mr. and Mrs. Amos Bracy had their house built for their 
own home and since the death of Mr. Bracy and the removal of 
Mrs. Bracy to Portland to the home of her son, the house has 
been rented to different families and is now owned by Merrill 

Elwell Trundy had his house built in 1930. Fred S. Mayo 
built the house owned by Mr. and Mrs. Milton Dolliver in 1932-3. 
R. M. Norwood built Willis H. Ballard's house in 1935 and 
Ralph Phippen's in 1936. The small cottage near the shore 
owned by heirs of Amos Dolliver was built over from a building 
once owned by S. H. Mayo. Lewis Newman's cottage was built 
in 1928. 

176 Traditions and Records 

Everton Gott's house was built for himself as a home and 
he now lives there. 

This completes the houses on Clark Point and we will now 
return to the place on the Main Road where we left off the 

Raymond Whitmore's house was once the shoemaker's shop 
of Robert Ash. He built it at Cranberry Island where he lived 
for a time and was in business, and then it was hauled to the 
water's edge and towed up to Southwest Harbor and placed on 
its present site. Mr. Ash enlarged it from time to time and 
since Mr. Whitmore purchased it he has rebuilt and remodeled 
the building. The small cottage across the road from the Whit- 
more house was built by Joseph Robinson and is now owned by 
Lewis Closson. 

The next house was built by Arad Young about 1852 and 
was the home of his family for many years. It has been owned 
by Stephen Harmon who enlarged it and is now the property of 
Mrs. Nellie Robbins Hanna. The land on which it stands was 
purchased by Mr. Young from Smith Robinson. 

The house at the shore which was long the home of Robert 
Ash and family was built about 1845 by Capt. Levi Robinson. 
He sold it to Mr. Ash and the widow of his son now owns it. 

The sardine factory was built about 1885 by John T. R. Free- 
man. William Lawton canned fish there for a few years and 
Alton E. Farnsworth came here in 1887 to work for him. Later, 
Mr. Lawton and Mr. Farnsworth managed the business together 
and then Mr. Farnsworth bought Mr. Lawton's interest. After 
a while he sold his interests to the Sea Coast Canning Company 
(1901) and they retained him as manager for several years 
during which time the buildings were enlarged and many im- 
provements added. 

Mr. Farnsworth purchased the factory at Brooklin, Maine, 
and for a while he divided his time between the two plants, fin- 
ally selling the Southwest Harbor property to the Addison Pack- 
ing Company, which also purchased the wharf and buildings 
which had been owned all this time by J. T. R. Freeman. 

Mr. Freeman retained a portion of the wharf and some build- 
ings for his coal business which is now carried on by his son-in- 
law, Fred A. Walls. 

Southwest Harbor 177 

J. E. Wass came to Southwest Harbor in 1914 as manager 
and part owner of the factory. He added considerable machin- 
ery and greatly increased the output. The first year the product 
was 16,000 cases, which grew to 60,000 cases in the three succes- 
sive years following. In 1930 Mr. Wass bought out one of the 
other stockholders and in May 1931 he sold his interests to J. W. 
Stinson and Son who now operate the place with Austin Mitchell 
as manager. 

Melville Mitchell's cottage was built in 1922. He moved to 
Prospect Harbor and sold the house in 1928 to Capt. Grover 
Wills. M. F. Mitchell, Sr., built his house just south of that of 
his son. The row of similar houses at the shore were built by 
the owners of the Addison Packing Co. for their employees. 

Arthur Allen built his house in the autumn of 1937 and 
moved in the last of December. 

Andrew Bickford's house was built in 1924 and Chase Bick- 
ford built his in 1923. This house was first built by John Dolli- 
ver at Seawall. It was partly taken down and brought to its 
present location, where it was built into a residence by Bert 
Robinson for Mr. Bickford. The Lowell Bickford house was a 
building from the Bert Robinson place. Mr. Bickford purchased 
it on his return from the World War in 1918, moved it to its 
present site and had it built into a home for himself and family. 

The Jacob Walls house was built in 1887 as was also a house 
for Mrs. Smith Robinson which was burned in 1908 and Harry 
Jordan built his house on the same site about 1912. 

Byron Robinson begun the building of his bungalow in 1923 
and has done most of the building and grading the grounds with 
his own hands. 

Frank Whittaker built his house in 1903 and sold it in a few 
years to Leman Mayo who still owns it. 

The house south of this one was built in 1883 by Bert 
Robinson, who sold it to C. M. Gott. He sold to Mrs. Bloomfield 
Reed and it later became the property of Mr. and Mrs. Barclay 
Burgess who own it at this time (1938). 

The Mayo family at one time owned much of the land in this 
vicinity. Isaac Mayo built a house on his land where he lived 
for many years and finally sold to Smith Robinson, Jr., whose 

178 Traditions and Records 

home it was for the remainder of his life. The house was pur- 
chased by Mr. Robinson from Henry Mayo after the death of 
his father. 

Josiah Mayo built a small house to the west of the Isaac 
Mayo place where he spent his life. His son, Augustus Mayo, 
built a house at the head of the harbor in 1885 and it is still 
owned by his heirs. Benjamin Mayo's house was built in 1882 
and it is now owned by his daughter, Mrs. Lulu Mayo James. 
Henry Bickford built his house about 1892. The work was done 
by Simon Ash of Sullivan. 

The house now owned by Mrs. Grace Bartlett and family 
was built for Roland Carter about 1882. The work was done by 
John Manchester, who afterward was the successful proprietor 
and manager of the Belmont Hotel at Bar Harbor. Mr. Carter 
was killed by the falling of a block from aloft on shipboard 
soon after the building of the house. His widow married Byron 
Carter, a brother of Roland and they continued to live there. 
Mr. Carter was a very successful school teacher and taught 
many terms in this vicinity. After Mrs. Carter's death, he re- 
mained in the home and when he died, it was left by will to Mr. 
Bartlett, who was his nephew and with whom he spent the last 
months of his life. 

There used to be a small, unpainted old house a little west 
of the site of the Carter place. It was built by David Robinson, 
the ancestor of all the Robinsons in Southwest Harbor; then it 
became the property of Horace Durgain who kept a store at 
what is now Manset, where he carried on an extensive business 
in many branches. Mr. Durgain lived in this house until he 
built a new home near his store and rented the old one for some 
time to different famihes. Roland Carter finally bought it and 
lived there until the new house was completed when it was 
taken down and some of the lumber used in building a shed. 

Thomas Robinson, Sr., built his house on the foundation of 
the one owned by his father, Smith Robinson, Sr. The place is 
now owned by the heirs of John L. Whitmore. There was a 
house between the Robinson place and the Bass Harbor road, 
belonging to Isaac Whitmore, which was burned in 1859 and 
Mr. Whitmore built another house the same summer on the Bass 

Southwest Harbor 179 

Harbor road where he and his family lived. At his death the 
place became the property of his son, George C. Whitmore, who 
sold it to his nephew, John L. Whitmore, and it now belongs to 
his heirs, and is occupied by Mrs. Whitmore. 

The house now owned by Robert Roberts was built by Lewis 
Robinson in 1894. 

Edwin Lord's house was built by Thomas Robinson, Jr., 
about 1903. The small bungalow near these houses was built by 
Donald K. Mayo and is now owned by his heirs. Newell Robin- 
son had his house built by James Whitmore about 1840 and at 
his death it became the property of his son Sam whose life was 
spent there. It is now owned by Mrs. Donald K. Mayo and 
occupied by tenants. 

Byron Mayo built his house in 1883 and it is now the prop- 
erty of his daughter, Mrs. Eva Mayo Joy. 

The Knowles house was built by Thomas Savage in 1889, 
and sold to Fred Knowles a few years later. George C. Whit- 
more's house was built for Elmer Stanley in 1887 who afterward 
sold it to Capt. Thomas Norwood, Mrs. Whitmore's father, and 
later it became the property of Mr. and Mrs. Whitmore. 

The large house now occupied by James and Gladys Whit- 
more was built about 1830 by David and Daniel Robinson, 
brothers of Smith Robinson, Sr., and sons of David Robinson. 
They sold it to Enoch Newman before it was completed. Mr. 
Newman traded with James Whitmore in 1838 for his place at 
Seawall and the Whitmore family have owned it in direct suc- 
cession ever since. The first house was a small, one-story 
building and William H. Whitmore, grandson of James, who 
inherited the place, had the roof raised and the second story 
added. Charles Davis of Trenton was the builder. 

Daniel Robinson moved to Washington County and David 
built a house in the woods in what is now the Mayo pasture. 

Robert Brown, son of William, had five acres of land from 
his father's estate and built a house opposite the Whitmore 
place, near the spring. He died before the house was completed 
and it was sold to Charles Dolliver, who had it moved to Seawall 
on the site of the house now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Judkins, 
where it burned. Mr. and Mrs. John Brown bought the land 
where it first stood and it is now owned by their heirs. 

180 Traditions and Records 

William Brown built a log house to the north of the present 
Brown buildings and in 1844 he built the house now owned by 
Mrs. Fred Knowles, which she inherited from her father. 
Jonathan Brown, father of WilHam, built a house on this same 
lot but near the shore where the outlines of the cellar may still 
be seen. Toward Bass Harbor, on the right, is a clearing where 
day-lilies and cinnamon roses blossom every spring and show 
that a home was once on that site. A house was built there by 
Smith Robinson, Jr., who had lived for a while in the Josiah 
Mayo house to the north of the Whitmore place. About 1841 
he built his new home, but his wife died not long after and he 
sold the place to his brother-in-law, Robert Gott, whose home 
it was for many years. There was a house opposite it on the 
south side of the road built by Nathaniel Higgins, whose wife 
was Sally, a daughter of William Brown. There were also 
several houses and cabins built in the woods in this vicinity, 
including one built by Ezra Robinson who afterward traded 
with Robert Gott for the Lawler place on Fernald Road, and one 
built by Benjamin Robinson which was partially destroyed by 
fire and later purchased by Seth Higgins and rebuilt on the 
Main Road into the house now owned by Mrs. Alice Gilley. 
There was also a good-sized house built on the bank between 
the road and the shore almost opposite the road leading to Bass 
Harbor. This was owned by James Cockle who once owned all 
the Whitmore property. He seems to have been a man of in- 
telligence and was said to have considerable gold in his posses- 
sion. He lived alone but for a negro servant who looked after 
the household cares. In 1785 he petitioned Governor Bernard 
for title to his land. He had been granted "300 acres of upland 
and 10 acres of marsh" but on inspection he was dissatisfied 
with the grant and asked that he be granted land in another 
place. He claimed that he had received a letter from a son of 
Sir Francis giving him permission to choose 300 acres of upland 
which might suit him better. Mr. Cockle made a choice but did 
not have it recorded. He spent 11 years on the land improving 
it and "Spending Large Sums of Money on it." Then during 
the Revolutionary War "a party of armed men" unknown to him, 
came and treated him cruelly and plundered him of his personal 

Southwest Harbor 181 

possessions including the letter and the deed of his first lot. So 
he petitioned that a deed of his land may be given him. He adds 
on June 13, 1785 that the land in question "Is situate at the head 
of South West Harbour on the Island of Mount Desert and He 
prays your Honour that his Frontage to the said their bout may 
commence south of the site of the Old Houses Erected hereto- 
fore by Sir F. Bernard, and be extended Northward on the 
Beech of the South Harbour. Until it shall include the Three 
Hundred Acres of Upland Etc."* 

So, in this vicinity, at the head of the harbor is the place 
where Sir Francis Bernard intended the settlement to be and 
where he built the houses which were the beginning of the town 
of Southwest Harbor. In another writing, Mr. Cockle says that 
the ruins of the old houses may be seen. 

Mr. Cockle died a few years later and Nathan Jones was 
appointed administrator of his estate in July, 1791. At that time 
he was owner of "300 acres of land appraised at 2210£, 10 acres 
of marsh near South West Harbour and 30£ in money." The 
negro servant had disappeared before the death of Mr. Cockle 
but not before he had told tales of gold buried by him under 
direction of his master and considerable digging has been done 
in times past, hoping for the discovery of buried treasure. There 
were whispers of foul play and murder, but a slave was a slave 
in those days, Mr. Cockle was a man of influence and nobody 
cared to meddle. Mr. Cockle died before long and the story 
was ended. 

Frank Black's house was built near the home of Thomas 
Robinson, Mrs. Black's father, and was moved to its present 
site on the Manset Road near the corner of the Bass Harbor 
road in 1916. 

It was in this vicinity, at the head of the harbor, that Tally- 
rand is supposed to have been bom. The story is doubted by 
many, but there is a strong tradition of the coming of a warship 
to the harbor, the friendship of one of the officers for the 
daughter of a fisherman, the birth of a boy, the accident which 
befell the child leaving him lame for life, and the return of the 

* The records of the town meeting- held June 10, 1776 state that it was 
voted "that Mr. James Cockel be allowed a share in the marsh equal 
to other settlers and no more." 

182 Traditions and Re^cords 

ship taking- away the boy and leaving gold with the family. 
Many families have handed down this story from their ances- 
tors. It is told elsewhere in this volume. 

Edward Black built a house in 1924 near that of his father, 
Frank Black, and later had it moved to a lot near the Seal Cove 
Road. Harry Brown built his house about 1900 and he also 
built the bungalow south of his house about 1927. Across the 
road toward the shore is still a cleared field in the woods where 
stood the Jonathan Brown house which was sold to Deacon Clark 
and moved to Clark Point opposite the Parker property where 
it still stands. Two log cabins have been built along this road 
in recent years. 

Joseph LeGros (called LeGrow, probably Le Grosvener) 
took up a lot of land in this vicinity where he lived alone for 
some years in a small house. He was a soldier of the Revolution 
and when he became too infirm to live by himself, a family by 
the name of Spurling on Cranberry Island took him to care for 
and was recompensed by his pension. When he died, he was 
buried on the island and his grave there is marked by a stone. 

The small stucco house was built by Melvin Farrar and his 
family lives there. 

The Kimball cottage was built in 1883 for Samuel Kimball 
of Bangor as a summer home. His widow left it by will to 
relatives who now own it. 

The old-fashioned house on the right, opposite the Kimball 
place, was built by Peter Stanley whose first house was on this 
same lot near the shore. About 1840 the present house was built 
and was the home of the family for three generations. In 1935 
it was purchased of the Stanley heirs by Harry E. Bennett who 
now lives there. The mill stones used as front doorsteps at the 
cottage at Femald Point owned by Mrs. Louise Fernald Gould- 
ing, were used for grinding grain at the old Peter Stanley home. 
Sans Stanley, a brother of Peter, gave them to Daniel Femald 
and thus they became the property of the Fernald family. 

There were several houses in the woods west of the village 
of Manset. On the ridge of land where Mount Height Cemetery 
now is, a man by the name of Ohio Gros lived and the high land 
in that vicinity from him got the appelation of Hio, which it 

South we;st Harbor 183 

has been called for many years. The stone wall which Mr. Gros 
built around his home still stands around his crumbling cellar. 

John Stone Grow lived on his land in that region. Timothy 
Smallidge, first of that name on Mount Desert Island, owned 
two houses there, one in which he lived and another where 
another Smallidge made his home. A man by the name of John 
Trufry also had a house and lot in those woods, but almost over 
to Bass Harbor. Peter Dolliver and his wife lived on a little 
farm west of the Manset schoolhouse. Mr. Dolliver requested 
that he be buried on his home lot and his grave may be seen in 
a comer of what was once his grassy field but is now overgrown 
with trees and underbrush. His son, Hiram Dolliver, lived in 
a house in that region. The Hiram Dolliver house is now a part 
of the kitchen of the Ocean House. 

The large cottage now owned by Mrs. Frederick Fox of 
Bangor was built for Dr. Abby M. Fulton about 1886 and re- 
mained the property of her family until it was sold to Mr. and 
Mrs. Fox. 

Ambrose Stanley built his house in 1887 and his daughter, 
Mrs. Cora Stanley Kent, now occupies it with her husband. Capt. 
Charles Stanley's house was built in 1879. His family occupied 
it for many years and then moved to Northeast Harbor and the 
house was sold to Vinal Beal who now lives there. 

The next house was begun by Henry Moore about 1866, but 
he did not complete it. Capt. John L. Stanley bought the place 
and finished the house, doing much of the carpenter and mason 
work himself. It was the home of Capt. and Mrs. Stanley all 
their married life of more than sixty years and is now owned 
by their heirs. 

Fred Noyes built his house in 1901-2 and has lived there 
ever since. 

In 1884 William King built his house and in 1896 he sold it 
to the Baptist society to be used as a parsonage. In 1935 the 
society sold it to Leslie S. King whose widow now lives there. 
Timothy Smallidge, Jr. had a house between the Noyes house 
and the schoolhouse. The well which he dug may still be seen. 
The school house was built in 1901, replacing one built on the 
same site about 1860. 

184 Traditions and Records 

The Ocean House, now owned by George Bond of Phila- 
delphia and managed every season by members of his family, 
is on a lot once owned by Horace Durgain, who was a stirring 
business man before and after 1850. His residence was built on 
the site of the hotel and was a large house of ornate design with 
many turrets and much ornamentation. Mr. Durgain owned the 
wharf and store at the foot of the hill and carried a large stock 
of goods of a wide variety. He also built sailing craft on the 
nearby beach and built at least one good-sized brig, the Romp. 
The Teague family bought the place and began to take summer 
tourists during the season. The location of this spot is unsur- 
passed for loveliness of the widespread view and it attracted 
many guests. In 1885 the house was enlarged by Nathaniel 
Teague to its present size and soon after the Ocean Cottage was 
built on the comer of the Main Road and the road leading past 
the hotel. This was an annex to the main house. After Mr. 
Teague's death, his family continued to manage the hotel until, 
in 1928, it was sold to the present owner, who bought the cottage 
which had previously become the property of another family, 
and moved it near the hotel where it now stands. 

There was a small cemetery at the southern comer of the 
Main Road and the hotel road which was moved many years 

When the United States Customs Service was established in 
Southwest Harbor, it was set up in the old Ward house just 
south of the schoolhouse, and Daniel Somes of Somesville was 
the first officer in charge. 

The first house on the left, going south after passing the 
corner of the Main Road and the road leading past the Ocean 
House, was built by Charles Stanley and back of it is a small 
bungalow owned by the heirs of Elmer Stanley. The adjoining 
house was built in 1901 by William Dolliver and sold to Everett 
G. Stanley in 1912. William Keene built his house in 1878 and 
in 1935 it was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Fred A. Birlem. Everett G. 
Stanley bought the workshop where Capt. Keene had built many 
boats, and moved it a few feet onto his own lot where it is now 
used as a salesroom. 

Isaac F. Stanley built the house in which he lives, in 1901, and 

South we:st Harbor 185 

the next residence is that of Charles Rich, built about 1916. The 
next house was built by John Hopkins in 1906 and is owned by 
his heirs. Mr. and Mrs. C. W. Marion had their house built in 

Next to the Ward house, now owned by William King, is one 
built in 1890 by Dr. George Anderson as a residence and dental 
office. It is now the property of Mr. and Mrs. Howard Reed, 
William Stanley built the next house about 1863. It is now 
owned by George Ward. The barn belonging to this place was 
once the first school house in what is now Manset. 

The adjoining large, two-story house was built in 1882 by Mr. 
and Mrs. Clark Hopkins on the site of a small old one that had 
been built by Augustus Rafenal, grandfather of Mrs. Hopkins. 
Mr. Rafenal owned a large tract of land here and kept a store. 
He and his wife came from France, bringing with them some 
valuable articles, such as silver, glass, china, etc., which are 
owned by their descendants. The Rafenals bought the land from 
Twisden Bowden. It remained in their family for several gene- 
rations and is now owned by Leslie Morrill, who has made ex- 
tensive changes and improvements on it. The ell was taken off 
in 1936 and sold to George Ward, who moved it to his lot be- 
tween his house and the one owned by Howard Reed, and with 
some alterations it is now a comfortable little house and is occu- 
pied by tenants. 

The bungalow back in the field on the western side of the 
road was built by Andrew Bennett who has been for some years 
keeper of a lighthouse. The bungalow has recently been pur- 
chased by Irving Willey as a home. 

The low, old-fashioned house which comes next was built 
in 1845 by Andrew Haynes for Capt. and Mrs. Nicholas Tucker. 
The contract price was $150 which included handmade doors 
and window frames. When the Tuckers moved to Bluehill in 
1863, they sold the place to Capt. William B. Stanley whose 
home it was for his lifetime and that of his wife. His heirs sold 
it to Frank Smith in 1932. 

Andrew Tucker, first of the name in Southwest Harbor, 
built a house in the field on the eastern side of the road below 
the Marion house. His son Nicholas built a house on the site 

186 Traditions and Records 

of the one where Mrs. Pederson now lives. This was burned. 
It was the son of the first Nicholas Tucker who built the house 
later owned by Capt. Stanley. 

The house to the south was built in 1935 by Ray Smith, son 
of Frank Smith. 

Mrs. Lucinda Stanley Johnson built her house in 1901 and 
the next house was built by Lionel Clark in 1884 and now occu- 
pied by his heirs. Fred Lawton, whose wife is a daughter of 
Mr. Clark, built the house south of it. 

In 1876 the Mutual Improvement and Benefit Society built a 
large two-story hall just north of the church, and named it Cen- 
tennial Hall. The records of the society give the date on which 
members met to decide upon the dimensions and settled upon 
30 by 60 feet. Andrew H. Haynes, Henry Newman and Peter 
Moore were chosen as a building committee and they attended 
to their duties and erected the hall that year at a cost of 
$1106.95, including painting. Later a chimney was built at a 
cost of $3.50 for labor, the society furnishing the materials. The 
stage was built some time after and it was not plastered for 
several years. Chandeliers were purchased in 1881 at a cost of 
$32.00 and William Danby was paid $3.00 "for digging a well 
and doing work around the hall." In 1883 the taxes on the hall 
were $5.05. 

For several years the society worked hard to make their in- 
vestment pay ; they had fairs, dances, masked balls and suppers. 
In the eighties H. Price Webber brought his company of actors 
to town every winter and for two weeks there was a play every 
night and the hall was packed with people from all over Mount 
Desert Island to witness East Lynn, Ten Nights in a Bar Room, 
The Octoroon, Fanchon the Cricket, etc. But after a while the 
interest waned and when the building began to fall into disre- 
pair, it was sold to J. L. Stanley and Sons, who a few years 
later, sold it to William H. Ward who moved it down to the 
shore road, put it on a foundation, added to it and had a general 
store on the first floor with a hall above where moving pictures 
were shown. The Wards sold to Leslie S. King who carried on 
the same business for some time. It was in this store that the 
fire started on December 2, 1918, which destroyed the buildings 

Southwest Harbor 187 

on the waterfront, swept away the fish wharves, the cold storage 
plant, a restaurant and several small buildings. J. L. Stanley 
and Sons were heavy losers in this fire. 

The wharves and buildings belonging to the J. L. Stanley 
and Sons firm covered a large area of the waterfront and gave 
employment to many men. They conducted a wholesale and 
retail fish business, had a large cold storage plant and ice house 
and sold ice and water to the fishing vessels. Their wharf was 
also used as a steamboat landing by the Eastern Steamship Co. 
This large business was gradually built up by Capt. Stanley, 
who retired from the sea, had a pond excavated near his home 
in a low-lying piece of land, for an ice pond, built an ice house 
and dug a well at the shore and began to cater to the needs of 
the fishing craft that came to his small wharf, selling them ice 
and water and articles from his store. As his sons grew up 
and were able to help, Capt. Stanley enlarged his business from 
time to time until it was one of the largest along the coast. He 
had taken steps to sell out because of his advancing years when 
the whole plant was swept away by fire. His courage and enter- 
prise in beginning all over again were remarkable, but he lived 
to see the wharf and buildings replaced though on a smaller 
scale and the business prospering once more. 

Returning to about opposite the road leading to Bass Harbor 
and taking the summer cottages built along the Manset shore; 
the first one is owned by Mr. and Mrs. Howell A. Potter of Ban- 
gor and occupied by them as a summer home. In 1932 a cottage 
of unique design was built on the shore for Mr. and Mrs. Gor- 
ham Wood of Bangor and Boston. Prof. E. S. Sheldon of 
Cambridge, Mass., built and occupied the next cottage for some 
summers and after his death it was sold to Mr. and Mrs. Philip 
Sterling of Philadelphia. Dr. and Mrs. John Johnston of Short 
Hills, New Jersey, built The Shielin, which they occupy every 

The traces of old cellars where once the first homes of Peter 
Stanley and Timothy Smallidge stood may be seen along this 

The house now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Edward W. Evans of 
Germantown, Pa., was built in the 1890's for John L. Stoddard, 

188 Traditions and Records 

the travel lecturer. His family spent several seasons in the 
house. It was later owned by Mr. and Mrs. Walter Piper of 
Sudbury, Mass., who sold it to Mr. Evans. 

The Rufus King house that stood across the Alder road from 
the Evans place was taken down in 1935. It was the home of 
the King- family for more than ninety years. Capt. King kept 
the lighthouse on Mount Desert Rock for several years. The 
house was remodeled many years ago and a second story added. 
It was purchased by L. A. Dantziger and taken down. This land 
was once owned by the Ward family. 

Mr. Dantziger owns the next cottage to the south and comes 
from his home at Highland Park, Michigan, each summer to 
occupy it. 

Next to his cottage formerly stood a house which was owned 
for many years by Mrs. David Turpie and used by her as a sum- 
mer home. It was left by will to her niece, Mrs. Peter T. Ben- 
son, who sold it to Capt. Henry E. Stanley of Bangor, who had 
the cottage taken down and in 1936-7 had the present large 
house built just back of the site of the first one. The builder 
was Fred S. Mayo. 

The next house is the beautiful summer home of President 
Ernest Martin Hopkins of Dartmouth College and was com- 
pletely remodeled in 1932. It began life as a public hall in 
which dances were held. The building was sawed in two parts, 
one part being taken to another site and is now the building in 
which is Herman Smith's store. The other half was made into 
a dwelling for George Teague, and his family made it their 
home until the death of Mrs. Teague. In 1922 it was sold to 
President Hopkins. The house has been entirely remodelled 
and additions built until it is one of the finest summer homes in 

At the foot of the hill, directly opposite the road leading up 
to the Ocean House, is a site where much business has been con- 
ducted in the past. A lobster factory was here for many years 
and later a store with living rooms on the second floor. It was 
owned for some time by Samuel Osgood and then by Horace 
Durgain, who was a stirring and successful business man and 

Southwest Harbor 189 

had many lines of activity. His store was well stocked with a 
wide variety of goods and customers came from afar to trade 
there. He also built several ships ; one, a brig named The 
Romp. About 1869 Mr. Durgain moved to Bangor and sold the 
Southwest Harbor property to Hugh J. Anderson, Jr., son of 
the ex-Governor of Maine by the same name. Mr. Anderson 
conducted the store and his family lived in the apartment above. 
He was in business there for fifteen years until his death in July, 
1884. Byron Mayo and Rufus Wells bought the business and 
buildings of the Anderson heirs and had a canning factory and 
fish business there. Byron Carter kept the store. Finally J. L. 
Stanley and Sons bought the property and then sold it to Asher 
Allen, owner of the Ocean House, and after some years Mr. and 
Mrs. Allen sold all their holdings to George Bond of Philadel- 
phia, who owns and manages the hotel. 

The old store building has been taken down and a new one 
built which is rented from time to time. The stone piers of the 
original wharf built by Mr. Durgain and possibly by the pre- 
vious owner, Samuel Osgood, are still in place, though the wharf 
was destroyed by ice some years ago. 

On the west side of the road below the road leading up the 
hill by the Ocean House is a small house belonging to Mrs. 
William Ward. Mrs. Ward also owns the large house in the 
field, which was built by Merrill King about 1878 as a home and 
later purchased by Mr. Ward. 

William Ward, Sr., had a store, a wharf and a bowling alley 
adjoining the Stanley wharf where he was in business for many 
years. Most of this wharf has been carried away by the ice and 
only a few decaying piers show where once a thriving business 
was carried on. There was a large house in the field above the 
Stanley property which was built by the first Benjamin Ward 
and was the home of his family until they moved to the small 
house south of the schoolhouse and rented their place to William 
Ray. The cellar may yet be seen. 

Then comes the J. L. Stanley and Sons property which has 
been described and which is now conducted under the name of 
the Stanley Fish and Lobster Corporation with C. W. Marion 
at the head. 

190 Traditions and Re;cords 

A large building was constructed a few years ago on the 
west side of the road for a newly organized fish company, but it 
operated only a short time and the building has been but little 

Next to the Stanley property is a wharf built and owned by 
John Hopkins, now a part of the Stanley plant. Next to that 
was once a wharf some three hundred feet long, built for a syn- 
dicate of men in the town who formed themselves into the Man- 
set Coal Co. When the first load of coal was landed on the 
wharf it collapsed and was never rebuilt. 

The bungalow owned by John A. Noyes was built about 1907 
by the Stanley firm as a home for the engineer of their cold 
storage plant. It was given as a wedding gift to Mr. Noyes, 
who is a grandson of Capt. John L. Stanley. 

The house occupied by John Reynolds was built by Amos 
Dolliver who lived in it for some time and then sold to the 
present owner. It has been remodeled somewhat. 

The building now owned and occupied by Everett Parker 
was built about 1886 by Capt. Thomas Stanley, who rented it 
to Lewis Newman to be used as a meat market. It was built 
across the road from its present site, close to the beach and a 
heavy storm washed away part of the foundation so it was no 
longer safe. It was sold to John Hancock who moved it and 
carried on a market and grocery store in the lower part for some 
years, using the upper floors as a residence. After Mr. Han- 
cock's death the building was sold to Mr. Parker. 

The ice house and cold storage plant on the shore side of the 
road, also the fish flakes and small buildings nearby, are the 
property of the Stanley Fish and Lobster Company. There 
have been other wharves along this shore. 

L. D. Newman built his bungalow in 1915. 

Clarence Austin owns the buildings built in 1878 by William 
Newman as his home and sold by his heirs. 

The store now owned by Herman Smith was a part of a 
building used as a public hall for some years on the site of the 
summer home of President Hopkins as has been stated. S. W. 
Newman was in business here for many years, selling to Mr. 
Smith when he retired in 1914 from business life. 

Southwest Harbor 191 

The adjoining building was owned for years by Melville 
Moore who lived on the second floor and had his store below. 
Malcolm Ward's family now live in the apartment and the lower 
floor is occupied as a barber shop by Paul Dam who bought the 
business in 1936 from Fred Lawton, Jr. This building was built 
by Llewellyn Cleveland. 

To the south is the post-ofiice in a building owned by Mrs. 
Samuel King who is postmistress. William Ray had a black- 
smith shop on this site for many years. 

The small boat house on the shore belongs to Dean Stanley. 
There was a large wharf on this shore on which William New- 
man and Asher Allen conducted a fish business for some time. 
The building on the wharf was sold to A. F. Ramsdell who 
moved it to his land on which once stood a blacksmith shop be- 
longing to Alvah Foss. Mr. Ramsdell made this into a garage 
and recently built a new garage on the site which he conducts 
and also has a small store adjoining. 

The property now owned by the Hinckley family was for 
several years owned by James Parker who carried on an exten- 
sive fish business on the wharf. After his death his sons con- 
ducted it for a while and then it became the property of the 
Union Trust Company of Ellsworth who sold to the J. L. 
Stanley & Sons Co. and they to Erasmus Hansen, a Swedish sail- 
maker. After his death by drowning, the wharf and buildings 
were sold to Mr. Hinckley. 

The ell of the large Colonial house now owned by B. B. 
Hinckley, was built by Andrew Tucker and his wife, Jemima 
Smallidge, who lived in it for some time and sold it to William 
Stanley. When William Stanley's wife died in 1851 he sold the 
house to Andrew H. Haynes who built the main part in 1853-4. 
The ell is one of the oldest buildings in the town. In the winter 
of 1936-7 R. M. Norwood built for the Hinckley family a small 
cottage near the large house suitable for winter use. 

South of the Hinckley house is a lot owned for many years 
by Albert Bartlett who had a sail loft there. This loft was used 
frequently as a public hall and fairs, dances, plays, etc., were 
held there before the building of Centennial Hall. Mr. and 
Mrs. Bartlett were interesting people. 

192 Traditions and Records 

Mrs. Bartlett was born in England and her English customs 
brought the Old World nearer to this little seacoast village. 
She was very hospitable and always served afternoon tea to her 
callers, which was then a novel observance. She was a favorite 
with young people, who came often to hear her stories of life 
in an English village and to have their fortunes read from the 
grounds in the teacups after partaking of the tea and plumcake, 
which she had always on hand. 

At first the Bartletts lived in rooms over the sail loft and 
later they built and lived in the house now owned and occupied 
by Derby Stanley. Mr. Bartlett followed the sea as sailmaker 
for many years and it was when on a trip to England that he 
met the girl who became his wife. 

The house on the south corner of the Shore Road and the 
one leading up toward the church, has been built on the site of 
one built by Aaron Wescott and bought by Capt. Benjamin 
Spurling Moore between 1826 and 1828. Capt. Moore and his 
family made it their home and after he was lost at sea in 1847 
his family continued to live there and it finally became the prop- 
erty of his granddaughter, who married Frank Smith and he 
built the present house. 

The next house to the south was built by Robert Spurling 
in 1875, sold by his heirs to Clifford Stanley and is now owned 
by heirs of Leslie S. King. 

The cottage called Silver Spray, on the shore near Derby 
Stanley's house and owned by him, was a building belonging 
to the Hinckley property. It was moved to its present site by 
Mr. Stanley and remodeled and is now rented to summer tenants. 

The Dudley Dolliver house is a very old one. It was built 
by Twisden Bowden more than a century ago. Mr. Dolliver 
added the second story and made many additions and improve- 
ments. It is now owned by Miss Edith Lanman of Bryn Mawr 
who uses it as her summer home. 

Another house once stood near the Derby Stanley property, 
owned by the Stanley family, but long since demolished. 

The Spahr house, owned by Mr. and Mrs. Boyd Lee Spahr 
of Haverford, Pa., and built for them by R. M. Norwood in 1932, 
is on a site where formerly two summer hotels have stood, both 

Southwest Harbor 193 

being- destroyed by fire. The first one was built by Sans Stanley 
about 1875 and was very popular as a summer hotel and patron- 
ized by many Harvard professors. It was burned July 10, 1884. 
Mr. Stanley built another and larger hotel on the same site and 
this was burned March 18, 1927. A few years later the land was 
sold to Mr. Spahr, who also owns one of the small cottages 
nearby which is used as a guest house. 

Fir Barring is owned by Mrs. E. Benson Stanley, who 
formerly owned and managed the Stanley House ; her husband 
being the son of the builder of both the hotels of this name. 

The next house belongs to Miss Margarita Safford, who occu- 
pies it summers. Mrs. Villa Stanley Pumphrey owns the house 
to the south. Along the shore are the summer homes of Mrs. 
Edwin L. Watson of California, Mrs. Jonathan Evans of Phila- 
delphia and Mr. and Mrs. Raynor G. Wellington of Belmont, 
Mass. Mr. Wellington is also the present owner of the old King 
house which has an interesting history. 

The ell was built by the first Benjamin Ward, ancestor of all 
of that name in the town. Mr. Ward, in his old age, gave the 
house to his son-in-law, Capt. Nichols, he agreeing to care for 
him during his life. Capt. Nichols built the main part of the 
house, but, finding the care of his father-in-law and family 
irksome, he surrendered what right he had in the property, took 
his wife and children on board his vessel and sailed away to 
make his future home in Boston. The house was sold to David 
King and before 1836 the first post-office in Southwest Harbor 
was established in it. 

In 1836 the deputy collector, Henry Jones of Ellsworth, was 
living in part of this house. David King's son Joseph inherited 
the property and then it passed to his son, Leslie S. King, who 
sold it to Mr. Wellington. 

The road leading from the Main Road down to this house 
has always been called King's Lane and there is a family bury- 
ing ground on the south side of it, now overgrown with under- 
brush where some of the first settlers and members of the King 
family are buried. 

The Capt. Nichols mentioned above came to Southwest Har- 
bor with Benjamin Ward, Jr., after the war of 1812. Both 

194 Traditions and Records 

young men were captured by the British and confined in Dart- 
moor prison in England where they suffered great hardship. 
When liberated Capt. Nichols accompanied his friend to his 
home in Southwest Harbor and married one of the daughters of 
the Ward family. 

Farther south along the shore is the summer home of Miss 
Lily Greer, called Riven Rocks, and also a place begun in 1927 
for other members of the Greer family, but never completed. 
Robert G. Crocker owns a tract of land at Seawall where he 
built a camp and the summer home of Miss Doris Fielding Reid 
of Baltimore is on Flynn's Point. 

William Flexner of Ithaca, N. Y., owns a small cottage at 

Returning to the Shore Road at Manset and going up the 
road leading to the main highway near the church ; on the right 
is Mrs. Samuel King's house. The building where the post-office 
is kept was Mr. King's undertaking shop and when his widow 
was appointed postmistress she had the office installed in that 

Mrs. King's residence, on the same lot as the post-office, was 
built about 1891 by Edward Spurling. It was purchased by 
Andrew Haynes and in 1895 it was given to his son's wife and 
is now owned by his granddaughter, Mrs. Susie Haynes King, 
who lives there. A small cottage to the west of Mrs. King's 
house is owned by Mrs. F. S. Dolliver and rented to tenants. 

Arthur Ginn occupies a house that was built by Freeman 
Torrey in 1875. It became the property of his son Frank, 
whose widow sold to Lyman Stanley and he to Mr. Ginn. Then 
comes Fred Torrey's house and the next one was built by Fred 
Torrey, sold to Albert Staples and then to James West. 

The large set of buildings on this road was built by William 
Moore, who went to the far West to live with his sons and the 
place is now owned by E. J. Turner. The barn on the place was 
burned in 1934. Back of these buildings is a small house built 
in the early eighties by Alvah Dolliver for his stepmother, whose 
home on the same site had been destroyed by fire. This had 
been built by one of the Tucker family. The house is now 
owned by Mrs. Pederson, a native of Norway, who lives there 
alone since the death of her husband. 

Southwest Harbor 195 

The small buildings in the corner of this road and the Main 
Road are owned by the Turner family and occupied by tenants 
and there are also some small store buildings. 

On the south side of this road Everett Torrey owns the house 
next to the Smith place. This was built by Frank Smith as a 
residence for one of his sons and it was later sold to Mr. Torrey 
who moved it to its present location. 

Thomas Knox occupies the house to the rear of the Torrey 
house and Maurice Beal owns the adjoining one. Clifton Foss 
lives in the next one and then comes the Benjamin Moore house 
now owned by E. G. Stanley. 

The Tucker family owned much of the land where Manset 
village center now is and several old cellars show where they 
had houses. 

The public library on the church grounds was presented to 
the trustees by Mrs. E. Benson Stanley, and J. L. Stanley and 
Sons had it moved to its present site. A few years ago the 
building was cut in halves and a section built in the center. Be- 
fore this was done it had the distinction of being the smallest 
public library in the country, if not in the world. 

A small building once stood near the church, built to house 
the hearse. This building was moved and made into a house 
and is the property of Mrs. AlHe Trask Manchester. 

In the summer of 1937 a society of young women of the 
village of Manset built a parish house back of the library on the 
church grounds. It was burned on November tenth of that year 
just as preparations were being made for an Armistice Day 
entertainment to be held there. The society was undaunted and 
immediately started work on another parish house farther to the 
north. The church was badly damaged on the north side by the 

Across the road are several small buildings owned by differ- 
ent persons, used sometimes as stores and sometimes rented as 
homes. The building owned by Mrs. Jessie Farrar was built 
about 1920 by Alvah Foss near his dwelling and was moved 
soon after to its present site where Mrs. Farrar lives in part 
of it and carries on a store in the front part. 

The church was begun on the old Bass Harbor road which 

196 Traditions and Records 

was south of the present church lot, as is stated in the records 
of the Congregational church. This was soon after 1800. When 
the location of the road was changed to the present one, the 
church, which was not completed, was taken down and the mate- 
rial used to build the present one. The funds were mostly raised 
by vote of the town and there was no question of denominations 
at the time of building; the settlers wanted a church and every- 
body united in building one. The vote was recorded in the town 
books as to the location, which was to be "Near the lot of Mr. 
Emerson" but no account of anyone of that name can be found 
elsewhere in the records. The church was several years in 
building and was used in summer time long before it was com- 
pleted. It is known that the pews were in place and the building 
considered completed in 1828. 

There seems to have been no provision for heating as there 
was never a fireplace and the first stoves were not brought to 
Mount Desert until the early 1850's. So, for at least more than 
twenty years, winter services must have been something of an 
ordeal. A fireless church was by no means uncommon in New 
England in the early days and many a minister has worn great- 
coat and mittens in the pulpit, while his hearers shivered in the 
pews in like array, with some of the women keeping their feet 
warm with the little foot stoves, owned for the purpose. Small 
wonder that the men sought the warmth and comfort of the 
nearby grog shop at intermission. 

The bell was purchased by the Ladies Benevolent Society 
many years later as given in another chapter. This is the oldest 
church on Mount Desert Island and it has been in constant use 
ever since its building. 

The first step taken to recognize sectarianism among the 
Mount Desert people seems to have been a sort of parish organi- 
zation of which records are found among the papers belonging 
to the Congregational church, but undated. This organization 
adopted seven articles, of which one was "that the object of this 
Parish shall be to support Congregational preaching and to 
defray contingent expenses." Those who signed the articles 
were Dr. Kendall Kittredge, B. W. Kittredge, Isaac Gott, Ben- 
jamin Atherton, John Rich, Jonathan Newman, John M. Noyes, 

Southwest Harbor 197 

Benjamin Gilley, John M. Holmes, John D. Lurvey, Levi Lurvey, 
B. T. Atherton, Isaac Lurvey, John Carroll, David King, James 
A. Freeman, Samuel Bowker. 

As Rev. Samuel Bowker served the church here and at 
Somesville from 1851 to 1855, this parish organization must have 
been between these dates as Mr. Bowker's name is among the 

In 1848 repairs to the amount of $100.13 were made to the 
church and Jonathan Newman was appointed collector of this 
sum from the pew owners. Some had evidently paid, but the 
following partial list of the holders was placed in the hands of 
Mr. Newman : Betsey Tucker, Heirs of Nathan Clark, Abraham 
Richardson, James Grinning (Grennan), Heirs of Nathaniel 
Gott, Davis Wasgatt, Stephen Manchester, Isaac Gott, Horace 
Durgain, Henry H. Clark, Leonard Holmes, Rebecca Moore, 
Enoch S. Newman, Isaac Lurvey, John Manchester, Jonathan 
Newman, James Whitmore, Jonathan Manchester, David Win- 
sey, Rufus King, James R. Freeman, Amos Eaton, Joseph Stan- 
ley, Eaton Clark, Samuel Gilpatrick, John Manchester, David 
King, Edward Burroughs, Joseph Lancaster, Hannah Spurling, 
Ezra H. Dodge, Samuel Hadlock and William Preble, Daniel 
Kimball, William Guillea (Gilley), Daniel Hamblen, Thomas W. 
Day, Francis Guillea (Gilley), Benjamin Guillea (Gilley), 
Nicholas Tucker, Thomas Newman, John Moore, Thomas Bun- 
ker. In 1862 the sum of four hundred dollars was expended on 
the church building and at this time Samuel Newman was the 
collector and the names of the pew owners are changed consider- 
ably with the passage of time. 

There is no record of ownership of the church building — 
there were never any trustees and the building has never been 
insured. The deed of the land is from Nicholas Tucker to "the 
church lot." It was extensively repaired in the 1880's and Asher 
Allen at that time in business in town, gave generously toward 
the renovation. The removing of the doors of the pews, the 
substitution of a modern pulpit set and the modernization of the 
interior is to be regretted, now that the charm of the old Colonial 
design is recognized and appreciated. The inside was painted 
and new carpets laid in the summer of 1937 by the Ladies' Aids 
of the Methodist and Baptist societies. 

198 Traditions and Records 

The first schoolhouse in this vicinity was built on or near 
the present church property. 

The large house south of the church was built for Hervey 
Butler about 1855. Enoch Newman was the builder. Mr. But- 
ler came from Mount Vernon, and was a photographer and sing- 
ing master. He had a studio in the house and many families of 
the present day have daguerreotypes and tintype pictures taken 
by Mr. Butler, who was a very good artist at this work. He 
also taught singing schools in this and surrounding towns. He 
moved back to Mount Vernon selling the house to Elisha Billings 
and he to Martha Billings Dolliver. It is now owned by Vurney 

The Charles Torrey house was built in 1873 and the George 
Hamilton house by Orrin Fernald, Thomas Fernald's house 
was built in 1884. South of this house was the old road to 
Bass Harbor on which the first church was begun and the first 
schoolhouse was built. 

The house now owned and occupied by Clarence Noyes was 
built about 1895 for Llewellyn Cleveland. 

On the eastern side of the road after passing the church is 
the bungalow built for Clarence Joy and now owned by William 
Knowles and occupied by tenants, and next is a bungalow which 
is the home of Henry Dolliver and family, and one built in 1927 
by Benjamin Dolliver which he occupies. Mr. Dolliver's son, 
Rudolph, built his house in 1927 and Everett Closson's house 
was built in 1928. 

On the site of Community Hall was a house owned by Enoch 
Hodgdon. In 1864 Freeman C. Torrey and family came from 
Petit Menan Point and at first lived in the rooms over the Dur- 
gain store, then bought the Enoch Hodgdon place where they 
lived until May, 1875, when Mr. Torrey built the house next to 
the post-ofiice now owned by Arthur Ginn, who bought it of Mr. 
Torrey's son Frank. The place bought of the Hodgdons was 
then owned by William Torrey, who sold it to Benjamin Dolli- 
ver, his brother-in-law. The old house was torn down and a new 
one built on the site which was burned September 18, 1918, and 
Mr. Dolliver sold the land to Guy Young, who sold it to the 
trustees of the Community House. This building was erected 
in 1930. 

Southwest Harbor 199 

The house to the south was built by Albert Torrey in 1884 
and sold to Elmer Stanley, who moved into it on October 21, 
1909, and whose family now occupy it as their home. 

William MacKenzie came from the Bay of Chaleur in a fish- 
ing vessel, married Bedelia Moore and built a house near 
where Rudolph Dolliver's house now stands. This house has 
long since disappeared. 

Carl Dolliver's house is rebuilt from one that stood near his 
father's residence and was moved to its present site and rebuilt 
in 1932. The next one is Percy Torrey's, built in 1933. 

Ernest Stanley built what is known as the Robert Newman 
house in 1897 as a home for his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Robert 
Newman, and it is now owned by his heirs. The house formerly 
owned by John Ferguson was built for Albert Stanley and has 
been owned by several different persons. It was bought in 1936 
by E. S. Thurston. 

Stanwood King's house was built in 1875 for Willis Dolliver. 

The Stillman S. Dolliver house was built in the winter of 
1883-4 by W. C. Higgins, for Mrs. Alice Morris. Mr. Dolliver 
built his carpenter shop to the south of the house and also the 
bungalow for his son, Morris A. Dolliver; this last in 1931. 
This lot of land was purchased from Joseph King. 

The house now owned by heirs of Mrs. Mary Kaler was built 
in 1843 by her father, Winchester Whitney, and was inherited 
by her. Across the road from the Kaler house is the oldest 
house in the town of Southwest Harbor. It was built about 
1805 by a man named John Trufry who had lived on the road 
toward Bass Harbor. He sold the house to Isaac Stanley, whose 
wife died leaving three young children and he sold to his brother, 
Sans Stanley, Jr. He, in turn, sold to another brother, John 
Stanley, in 1835 and it was inherited by his grandson, Frank 
Cram, who now owns it. 

The place now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Judkins once belonged 
to Charles Dolliver who bought a house on the Bass Harbor 
road opposite the Whitmore property and later moved it to this 
site. It was afterward destroyed by fire. 

Mr. Dolliver's widow married James Soulis, a carpenter and 
builder, and he built the house where Mr. and Mrs. Judkins now 
live. This was about 1875. 

200 Traditions and Records 

Mrs. Laura Leonard's house was built for her, and Frank 
Chalmers built his house. 

Mrs. Sarah Robinson and her son and family live in the 
Reuben Billings house, which is on the lot and almost on the 
same site of one built there before 1820 by the first Sans Stanley, 
whose wife was Elizabeth Mayo. The house was inherited by 
John Elisha Billings and his only daughter, Mrs. Sarah Billings 
Robinson, came into possession of it on the death of her parents. 
Reuben Billings was the father of John Elisha. 

Across the road is a small cottage built in 1937 for Mr. and 
Mrs. Carlton Hill. 

Leverett Stanley owns the house built by John Stanley and 
owned by many different persons during the course of time. 

Charles Haynes built his house in 1892. Henry Lurvey's 
house was built in 1884 for James Fernald, and his son sold it to 
Mr. Lurvey. In 1936 it was purchased by Mrs. Clara DoUiver 

Jonathan Stuart built his house in 1935-6, almost all with his 
own hands. 

On the road leading past Charles Haynes' house to the shore 
is the cottage owned by the Barker sisters. Miss Estelle Barker 
and Mrs. J. Howard Rogers of New York, and built in 1933, also 
one owned by the Misses Elizabeth Cogswell and Jean Smalley 
of Philadelphia and built in 1929. Close to the shore at the end 
of this road is a cottage built for Mr. and Mrs. Everett E. 
Truette of Brookline, Mass., and sold by Mrs. Truette to Miss 
Dorothy Elder Marcus of New York, who makes it her per- 
manent home. 

Miss Edith Cushing of Cambridge, Mass., bought two houses 
owned by members of the Newman family. The one on the 
northern end of her lot was built by Herbert Rice about 1900, 
sold to Lewis Newman, and in 1928 he sold to Miss Cushing, 
The other house on the lot was built by Llewellyn Cleveland 
about 1876. The builders were Jonathan and Daniel Norwood. 
A few years later it was sold to Amos Newman and his son 
Charles sold to Miss Cushing in 1927. For a short time this 
house was used as a tea room. 

There was once a house on the site of the Cushing garage 

Southwest Harbor 201 

owned by Ezekiel Moore. The Moore family owned a large 
tract of land in this vicinity and a number of cellars can still 
be traced where houses once stood. 

Dr. A. W. Harris built his house in 1925-6 and purchased 
the house to the south that was built by Ezekiel Moore about 
1846. Mr. Moore traded it to one of his brothers and it later 
came to be owned by Esther Moore Eaton Winzey who lived 
there with her husband, David Winzey. Mr. Winzey was born 
in England and ran away from home when a boy to go to sea. 
He lived for many years in Southwest Harbor, married the 
widow of Joshua Eaton (son of Rev. Ebenezer Eaton) and made 
at least one visit to his English home. 

The house was inherited by Mrs. Ulrica Birlem Stanley and 
she sold it to Dr. Harris who remodeled and added to the origi- 
nal house. Both houses are now the property of Dr. Harris' 
son, A. W. Harris, Jr. 

Ezekiel Moore built another house in this locality near the 
shore. It was the home of his son, Samuel Moore, during his 
lifetime and is now owned by the heirs of Ezekiel Moore. 

The schoolhouse was built in 1900 and the first term of school 
was in the autumn of that year, taught by Sarah T. Carroll 
(Mrs. Wilford H. Kittredge). This building replaced the old 
one which stood farther south. 

The house now owned and occupied by Hiram Hadlock was 
built by his father, Epps Hadlock, in 1858. The cellar had been 
dug by Enoch Newman and Mr. Hadlock purchased the lot and 
built the house. The land was half of the hundred acre lot once 
owned by the first Sans Stanley. 

Mr. Hadlock was the man who made and set the first lobster 
trap in Southwest Harbor on April 16, 1854, and many of his 
descendants have been and still are, interested in and actively 
connected with the lobster industry. 

William Newman's house was built about 1860 by Robert 
Newman. Thomas Newman, born in 1835, still lives (1938) in 
the house where he was born and sleeps every night in the room 
where he first saw the light. His father, Thomas Newman of 
English birth, came to Southwest Harbor from Gouldsboro, 
Maine, and built a log house to the east and across the road. 

202 Traditions and Records 

About 1830 he built this house where he spent the remainder of 
his life and where his son, the present owner, has lived more than 
a century, celebrating his one hundredth birthday on August 28, 
1935. Michael Bulger of Cranberry Island was the builder of 
the house, getting out the inside finish by hand. John Carroll 
did the mason work. 

Mr. Newman's grandson, Thomas Newman, 3rd, built his 
bungalow in 1930. Edward Newman's house was built about 

The house now owned and occupied by Mr. and Mrs. John 
Ward was built in 1846. It was begun and partly finished by 
Benjamin Newman who sold it to his brother, Lindsay Newman, 
and he completed it and spent his life there. It is now owned 
by his daughter, Mrs. Alma Newman Ward. 

South of the Newman house is one owned by Almon Rams- 
dell, Jr., and the next one, now owned by A. F. Ramsdell, Sr., 
was built by William Newman about 1856 on land once owned 
by Jonathan Newman. 

Mrs. Nora King Parker's house was built by her grandfather, 
Samuel S. Newman, in 1832. It was inherited by his daughter, 
Mrs. Lucy Newman King, and she left it to her daughter, Mrs. 
Parker of Danvers, Mass., who now spends her summers there. 

The next house was built by Mrs. Nancy Newman Sawyer 
about 19CX). She sold it to John Ward and his heirs now own it 
and rent it to tenants. 

Benjamin Newman built the next house and for some years 
it was owned by Mr. and Mrs. C. E. Metcalf. After Mr. Met- 
calf's death his widow sold the place to Mrs. Thelma Ward who 
sold to Mrs. Lula Newman Kent. This house was first built on 
the rise of ground to the west of its present site and later moved 
to the place where it now stands. 

The house now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Fred Fitch was built 
nearly a century ago (1937) by Frank Spurling of Cranberry 
Isles. He sold it to Charles Eaton Stanley about 1866 and he 
spent the remainder of his life there. His widow deeded the 
place to Guy Young for her maintenance ; he sold to Thomas 
Hodgdon and he to Soulis Newman and Mr. Newman to Mr. 
Fitch. Enoch Newman was the builder of this house. 

Southwest Harbor 203 

Henry Newman built the house now owned by Ray Billings. 
Mr. Newman was an expert ship builder and built many vessels 
of different kinds in the shipyards of Mount Desert Island. He 
was master builder on the three-masted vessel, Carrie M. Rich- 
ardson, built on the Manset shore and on another three-master 
built at Bass Harbor. The house was built about 1848. 

The Joseph Walker house was built as a store for Guy Young 
and was very near the road. It was moved to its present site 
and remodeled into a dwelling. 

Walter Newman's house was built by B. T. Dolliver, who 
lived in it some time before selling to Gardner Carter who sold 
to Mr. Newman. 

Benjamin Moore built his house more than a century ago 
(1938). He died and was buried across the road from his home. 
Later all who died in his family were buried there as well as 
many of the friends and neighbors. In 1923 these graves were 
all removed to Mount Height. Mr. Moore's son Peter inherited 
the place and cared for his mother, Mrs. Eliza Stanley Moore, 
during her lifetime. His son Herbert sold the place to Mr. and 
Mrs. Thomas P. Cope in 1923 and they have remodeled the house 
and built additions, making it a very beautiful summer home. 

Dudley Dolliver's house was formerly a store which he has 
remodeled into a dwelling, buying it about 1900. 

The next house was built by Joshua Moore more than 78 
years ago. Mr. Moore died on board a vessel coming homeward 
from Rockland and in 1869 Benjamin Dolliver bought the place 
and spent his life there. Then it became the property of his son 
Amos, whose family own it now (1938). 

E. E. Newman's house is more than a century old. In 1837-8 
it was used as a parsonage and was occupied by Rev. John 
Wesley Dow and family. It was to this house that Mrs. Joshua 
Moore moved after selling her house to Benjamin Dolliver and 
she lived here with her son, Lewis Moore. Alvah Dolliver 
bought the house and his widow married Elmer Newman who 
now owns it. 

George Dolliver built a part of his house about 1917 and two 
years later he completed it. 

Linwood Jellison built his house in 1934. This is very near 
the site of the first Seawall schoolhouse. 

204 Traditions and Records 

Osmond Harper built his house in 1915. Joseph Moore had 
a store and house near the site of this house. Mrs. Mattie Moore 
Dolliver's house was built in 1859 by her father, John Moore, 
whose home it was during his lifetime, descending to his daugh- 
ter, Mrs. Dolliver. Joseph's store is a part of her house. 

Peter Benson's house is on the site of one built by Van Ness 
Smith, who changed his mind before his house was finished, took 
it down and carried the materials to Otter Creek where he rebuilt 
it. George Sanford built a house on the same site and lived in 
it for twenty or more years, then sold it to Peter Benson, whose 
son Peter now owns and occupies it with many additions and 

Across the road from the Benson house Joshua and Abigail 
Stanley built a house many years ago. It fell to their son 
Thomas, he left it to Joshua, 2nd, he sold to George Kent and 
he to Peter T. Benson who sold the house to Miss Doris Fielding 
Raid, who had it moved to her lot on Flynn's Point which she 
had purchased from Mr. Benson and there she had it remodelled 
into a summer home. In 1934 Mr. Benson built a small house 
on the cellar of the Stanley house, which is occupied by tenants. 
He sold a lot at the beach to Mr. and Mrs. Charles Reeve who 
built their cottage in 1934 and another to Miss Carolyn Burch 
whose house was built by R. M. Norwood in 1928. The land 
purchased by Robert G. Crocker for his camp was a part of this 
lot and Mr. Benson sold the Seawall beach to Acadia National 
Park so it is now open to the public for all time. 

Many old cellars are to be traced in the southern part of the 
town and now no one knows their origin, though a few shrubs 
and apple trees show that a home was once there. Families by 
the names of Carpenter and Davis had houses not far from Mrs. 
F. S. Dolliver's house, John Stone Grow had a house in the 
woods to the south of where the cemetery now is and his owner- 
ship is commemorated by a ledge still spoken of as "John 
Stone Grow's ledge." William Grow, too, lived in this vicinity. 
A man by the name of Michael (?) Flynn had a house at Flynn's 
Point and was buried there, though no one knows the exact spot. 

At the time of the first census in 1790 the records give the 
name of William Baker as a resident here and tradition says that 

Southwest Harbor 205 

"Grandma'am Baker" was sent for in times of sickness in those 
early days. There was no doctor on Mount Desert Island until 
the coming of Dr. Kendall Kittredge in 1799 and stories are told 
of times when men turned out in numbers to get Grandma'am 
Baker to the house of suffering; sometimes to the adjoining 
islands across turbulent seas or through floating ice, through 
drifting snows or driving rains. Mrs. F. S. DoUiver has a table 
which was owned by Mrs. Baker but all other information is 
lost in the mists of long ago. The old lady was often carried 
on a hand-barrow by men when the call was from a distance 
or over rough roads. 

There are a number of small summer cottages around Seawall 
and beyond the beach is a large cleared grassy area where many 
different families have lived in years past. 

About 1817 James Whitmore came from Deer Isle and bought 
167 acres of land at Seawall and built his house almost opposite 
the road which now leads to the Stanley Lobster Pound at the 
shore. The place where the boats are hauled up at the Pound 
is the same where Mr. Whitmore hauled his boats up when re- 
turning from a fishing trip. He married Rebecca Stanley and 
they built their house there in 1819 and lived there seventeen 
years. The well which he dug still yields water and is in con- 
stant use in summer. March 27, 1839, the Whitmores exchanged 
places with Enoch Newman who then owned the present Whit- 
more property on the Bass Harbor road, where James Whit- 
more's descendants have owned it and lived there ever since. 
Mr. Newman sold the Seawall place to Benjamin Dolliver and 
he sold to James Gott in 1867. The Gotts lived there until after 

John Dolliver had a house farther to the west which he sold 
to United States Government and it was burned a few years ago. 
The radio station and house were built during the World War 
and the station was dismantled some years after the war was 
over. The radio house as it is still called, is owned by United 
States and in the care of Park authorities. William Dolliver 
also had a house in this locality. There is a graveyard just be- 
yond the radio house on the north side of the road, now over- 
grown with grass and bushes, where members of Gott and Dolli- 
ver families are buried. 

206 Traditions and Records 

In 1882 Dr. Sophia Thompson of Boston built a large hotel 
and stable at Seawall for summer business to be conducted by 
her son, Smith Mooney. The hotel was well finished and fur- 
nished with fine furniture, but it was too far away from the 
village ; when the fog was in it was cold and dreary and the in- 
stallation of a bell buoy on a reef ofif the shore kept the guests 
awake with its gloomy tolling, so it was not successful and after 
a few years the furnishings were sold and the buildings taken 
down. When the hotel was built the old Whitmore house was 
still standing and a part of it was used as a shed. 

Dudley Dolliver, Sr., had a house in this locality and lived 
here for some time. Thomas Moore and his wife Betsey also 
had a home near this place. 

At Ship Harbor lived Moses and Elizabeth Manchester whose 
house must have been built much over a hundred years ago and 
was taken down only a few years ago. 

The house on Greening's Island was built by Nathaniel Gott, 
brother of Esther Gott Langley and Jane Gott Grennan, some- 
time in the thirties. When Philip Langley died his widow, 
Esther, sent for her brother and sister to come and live with her 
on what was then called Langley's Island. Esther lived in a 
small farmhouse which had been built by Philip not far from 
the site of the present house. Part of that first house forms the 
kitchen and shed of the present one. 

Nathaniel built this house for himself and family and kept 
a store in two rooms. One room was devoted to the storage of 
grain and flour and the other to a general stock of goods. These 
goods were exchanged with the fishermen for fish and quite an 
extensive fish business was carried on for some years by the 
Gott family. 

Later Esther and Jane moved into the new house and Nathan- 
iel used part of the old one for his pigs and part as a blacksmith 
shop where his oxen were shod. 

Nathaniel's health failed so he was unable to work and he 
returned to his home at Gott's Island. He grew worse and was 
taken to Boston for treatment. He died just as the vessel on 
which he was a passenger dropped anchor in Boston harbor. 

J. G. Thorp of Cambridge, Mass., was the first to purchase 

Southwest Harbor 207 

land and build a summer home on Greening's Island. Then 
came Miss Henrietta Gardiner, Henry A. Dreer, the Philadelphia 
seedsman, and S. W. Colton, also of Philadelphia, who purchased 
the eastern end of the island and built his large cottage, Fara- 
way, where his famly spent many summers. Now, in addition to 
the above cottages, Mrs. Wilson and Robert Esty of the Colton 
family have houses and the heirs of Ralph Colton own the Dreer 
house. Dr. and Mrs. Elliot de Berry of St. Paul, Minn., had a 
house built a few years ago on a part of the Thorp holdings. 

The Thorp heirs now own the farmhouse and some of the 
men employed on the estate occupy it with their families in 

These are the stories of the houses in Southwest Harbor, 
gleaned from many sources. The older houses hold many treas- 
ures from foreign lands brought in the days when Mount Desert 
men sailed the seven seas and brought home gifts from many 
countries. Sometimes the wives accompanied their husbands 
on their long voyages, often their children were born at sea and 
the names of cities on the other side of the world were household 

From these modest homes have gone forth men and women 
who have done their share of work in the world in many ways 
and in many lands. Many of them rest forever in foreign 
countries or beneath the billows of the sea and in the burying 
grounds of Mount Desert Island lie the remains of many persons 
who were born in other lands. 

From England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland, from Germany, 
France, Spain, Portugal and Russia, from sunny Italy and from 
the Scandinavian countries, from scattered islands and from 
China have come those who made their homes on our Island, 
mingled their blood with that of the settlers and handed on their 
traits and characteristics of various qualities to make our popu- 
lation what it is. There are ancient family Bibles in these homes 
with timestained records, precious indeed to the owners, there 
are traditions handed down by "word of mouth", of the part 
borne by ancestors in the early struggles with the elements, with 
sickness, pain and accident and in war to make America what it 
is today. They fought in the ranks of Washington's army, they 

208 Traditions and Records 

helped to man the ships in 1812, they defended their homes from 
the Indians, their names are on the roster of the Civil War and 
their descendants saw service in the World War. 

They early established churches and schools and each genera- 
tion has striven to give the children better advantages in educa- 
tion than they themselves had enjoyed. 

And when the holiday season comes, many of the dishes that 
grace the tables in these homes, are cooked from recipes that 
are heirlooms and in some cases served on dishes that have been 
handed down for generations. 

In "Calico Bush" Rachel Field sums up the inheritance of 
Mount Desert people thus : 

" — Here and there in some far place 

A name persists or a foreign face ; 

A lift of shoulder; a turn of head; 

Along with an Old World chest or bed ; 

A Breton Bible ; a silver spoon ; 

And feet more quick to a fiddle tune ; 

A gift for taking the last, mad chance. 

Because some great-great came from France." 


The following poem was written by Mrs. Grace Duffield 
Goodwin of Pawtucket, Rhode Island, whose summer home was 
at Southwest Harbor for several years. A framed copy of the 
poem was presented by the author's husband, Rev. F. J. Good- 
win, to the public library of Southwest Harbor where it still 
hangs. The poem was inspired by a visit to the old cemetery 
south of the High Road which is the oldest cemetery on Mount 
Desert Island. 


Between the harbor and the hill 
The dead folks lie, serene and still. 
Wise with the wonder of the sea 
They fearless face eternity. 

South we;st Harbor 209 

Between the sunset and the star 
Where naught but peace and silence are, 
They He who make no haste to go 
From this good earth that loved them so, 
Full well content they seem to be 
Within the calling of the sea. 

Above their dreaming falls the dew, 
Across their sleep strong faring wings 
Wake the old gladness that they knew 
In days of far adventurings. 
Not Heaven itself shall teach them yet 
That those are blessed who forget. 

Between the harbor and the hill 
The earth that bore them holds them still. 
The memoried sea draws closer yet 
Until each grave with mist is wet, 
Beneath whose silver, sheltering fold 
Lies the long years' unreckoned gold. 

Peace, soul that weeps — you could be still 

Between the harbor and the hill. 

Peace, soul that strives — you could be free 

Below the hill, beside the sea. 

No softer grave, no deeper tomb. 

Oh, fisher-folk, make room, make room. 

Pawtucket, Rhode Island, June, 1907. 


The burying ground on the south side of the High Road in 
Southwest Harbor was the first land on Mount Desert Island 
to be set aside as a public burial place. Elder Ebenezer Eaton, 
first minister of the first Congregational church, to which he 
gave his best service for nearly fifty years, allowed his par- 
ishioners to lay their dead to rest on his dry, sunny hillside in 
what was then his field. There was no attempt at first to lay 
out the lots in orderly manner, so families in many cases are not 
laid near each other. Most of the earlier graves have no markers 
save field stones and many cannot now be identified. 

210 Traditions and Records 

Many of the graves have been removed to Mount Height 
and there are but thirty-six stones left in the old yard to tell who 
lies buried there. The use of the yard was discontinued when it 
was found that no new grave could be made without disturbing 
others whose resting places were unmarked and it was not 
possible to buy surrounding land to enlarge the place. 

Many of the first settlers buried their dead on their own land 
and while most of these private burial places have been removed 
to the cemetery at Mount Height, there are still a few grave- 
stones on some of the older homesteads. 

This yard was not enclosed until about 1890 when Mrs. Emily 
Robinson Farnsworth raised money among the townspeople 
to build the fence that now (1938) surrounds it. The upper part 
of the yard, which is enclosed by a picket fence of pine that has 
stood for more than sixty years and is still in fair condition, 
was fenced by the Freeman and Haynes families as a private 
yard. Most of the graves there have been removed and those 
remaining are members of those families. 

Among the stones in the lower or old part of the yard, is 
that of "Abigail H., Consort of Rev. Ebenezer Eaton, died April 
24, 1830, aged 72." Rev. Eaton was the first minister of the 
Congregational church of Mount Desert and at one time he 
owned a large tract of land on Clark Point, including the 
burying ground itself. After the death of his wife, he went to 
Sedgwick to visit his daughter and died there. The citizens of 
this town and especially the members of the church, planned to 
have his body brought here to rest by the side of his wife in the 
community where his life work was done. But it was not easy in 
those days of lack of conveyance and rough roads and time 
passed and it was not done. By and by those who had known 
this beloved minister were gone and the plan faded away; but 
the older residents never ceased to regret that it was not carried 

Near the grave of Mrs. Herrick is that of her son, "Joshua 
Herrick Eaton, bom Sept. 20, 1795, died Dec. 16, 1835, being in 
the 41st year of his age". These stones are of slate and are 

Southwest Harbor 211 

perfectly preserved. They were not "set" as has been the custom 
in later days, but the long pointed shaft was driven deep into 
the ground. They have stood the test of time much better than 
the more recent stones, whose iron bolts in many cases have 
rusted ofif and allowed the stones to fall over. When the in- 
scriptions are left lying face upward, the lettering on marble is 
soon defaced and obliterated. Lying face down the lettering will 
last for many years. 

The graves of Capt. Levi Robinson and his wife, Lavinia 
Savage, are side by side and two of their young children are 
buried near by. Capt. Robinson, in 1839, built the house on the 
High Road now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Schuyler R. Clark 
(1938). When his wife died in 1847, at the age of 33, he sold 
the place to James Long. Capt. Robinson died in 1862. 

"Mary L., wife of Alen Hopkins, died Nov. 1, 1839, aged 
29." It is supposed that Mr. Hopkins is buried near by but 
there is no stone to mark the place. This Mary was a daughter 
of John Clark of Beech Hill. Mr. Hopkins was a man of in- 
fluence in the community, a justice of the peace, held town 
offices and wrote a fine hand which is found on many legal 
papers among the old families of the vicinity. He lived on the 
place now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Joseph B. Norwood. A son, 
"David E, F. G. Hopkins," lies close by and a daughter, "Mary 
E., wife of Wlllard Young and daughter of Allen Hopkins," is 
buried in the southwest corner of the yard with her seven year 
old son by her side. Mrs. Young was but 26 years of age. It 
may be a bit of interesting history to our townspeople to know 
that Allen Hopkins gave his daughter a lot of land at the time 
of her marriage and her husband, Willard Young, built the 
house now occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Frank Stewart. After the 
death of his young wife, Mr. Young sold the place to Lewis 
Harmon, who spent his life there and his daughter, Mrs. Stewart, 
now owns and occupies it. 

A double stone marks the graves of William and Phebe 
Gilley, who died within a week of each other, aged respectively 
89 and 84 and the grave of William's first wife Clarissa, who 
died in 1837, aged 26 years, is near. 

One stone is marked "Susan, wife of Robert Douglas, died 
1858, aged 74." 

212 Traditions and Rijcords 

"J. W. Robinson, U. S. Navy" is a name on a small marble 
marker erected by the government. 

The graves of Nehemiah Cousins and his wife Nancy Caro- 
line, their son Isaac R. and their daughter "L. Viola, wife of 
James Ross" who died at the age of 17, also Mr. Cousin's sister, 
Irene B., are in one lot which has always been cared for by 
their descendants. 

"Joanna, wife of Daniel Robinson" and her fourteen year 
old son Daniel Jr. are laid side by side. 

Capt. James Whitmore and his wife Rebecca, aged 86 and 82, 
head a line of graves where lie four of their children. Capt. 
Joseph Whitmore who died January 24, 1847, at the age of 29 
had captained his ship to foreign lands for several voyages even 
at that early age and came home to die of "consumption." 
"Sarah Whitmore, wife of Smith Robinson", died November 2, 
1850, aged 27, Hannah Whitmore died April 12, 1850, aged 17 
years and John G. Whitmore died in a Massachusetts seaport, 
November 30, 1850, at the tender age of sixteen years. His 
parents were watching for his homecoming, but when his ship 
sailed into the harbor, her flag was at half mast, the boy having 
died of fever. Thus it is seen that Capt. and Mrs. Whitmore 
were called upon to mourn the deaths of three of their children 
within six months, and on August 9, 1851, another daughter, 
Joanna, died at Sullivan, aged 26 years. She is buried at Bay- 
side Cemetery by the side of her husband, Capt. Charles Whit- 
taker. One can but feel a pang for the grief of that household 
even after the lapse of all these years. 

"Gracie Adams aged five years" is engraved on a little stone 
and another shaft marks the resting place of Joshua Mayo, aged 
34, and Isaac P. Mayo, aged 20. These were sons of Isaac 

A much carved stone in the southeast corner of the yard is 
marked, "Robert Roberts, seaman U. S. N., born in Wales, died 
on board U. S. S. Powhatan, September, 1872, aged 28. Erected 
by his shipmates." On the back of the stone is the name of its 
maker and the address, Norfolk, Va. 

People living at that time remember the coming of the big 
warship into the harbor, the impressive procession of officers 

Southwe;st Harbor 213 

and sailors, the whiteclad men bearing the coffin on a bier on 
their shoulders and the officers in their glittering uniforms walk- 
ing beside the body, the funeral service at the burying ground 
attended by many of the townspeople, the military ceremonies 
and later came the stone to be placed at the grave. This boy 
was killed by a fall from aloft. 

Near his grave is that of another sailor who was brought 
here from a ship and buried but there is no marker and no one 
now living remembers any facts about the burial. It is said by 
the older inhabitants that several other unmarked graves are the 
resting places of strangers brought in from ships and it is 
claimed that the body of an unknown woman was brought here 
and buried in this yard many years ago, she having died on a 
ship bound from St. Johns to New York, but no facts can be 

Elizabeth, wife of Benjamin Gilley and daughter of George 
Harmon, lies buried here and in the northeast corner are the 
graves of Robert Gott, who died in 1859 and his wife, Lydia M. 
(daughter of Smith Robinson, Sr.), with their children, David R., 
whose age was 27 and Josephine who lived but eight months, 
dying in 1857. 

It is significant in visiting the old burying grounds on Mount 
Desert Island to note how many young wives, little children and 
young people died in the early days. A plague of diphtheria 
swept this town and the nearby settlements in the late fifties 
and many homes were made desolate as rows of little graves in 
the old yards show. Contagion was unheard of and people 
attended public funerals and went home to carry the dread dis- 
ease to their own little ones. A Bible record in one family shows 
that five children, all the young parents had, died at that time 
within a week or so. 

In 1900 when the new cemetery at Mount Height was laid 
out this one was left in a state of neglect except for a few fami- 
lies who kept their lots clear. Weeds and underbrush gradually 
covered most of the yard and many graves were removed to the 
nev/ cemetery leaving unsightly depressions. 

In winter the snow laden bushes leaned against the stones, 
breaking many and disfiguring others. In 1930 a movement was 

214 Traditions and Ri;cords 

started by the late Mrs. George A. Rhoads of Wilmington, Dela- 
ware, a summer resident who was interested in the early history 
of the town and in preserving its landmarks, and money was 
raised to take out the bushes and clear up the cemetery. 

The work was done by the late George Norwood, who used 
the utmost care in taking out the trees to leave the field-stone 
markers undisturbed and the broken stones in their correct 
places. Interested friends have contributed each year the small 
sum needed for mowing the grass and weeds and keeping the 
yard neat. 


The first settler in Southwest Harbor was William Gilley, 
who built his house on land which is now owned by the Country 
Club of Southwest Harbor. Neighbors settled near him and Mr. 
Gilley allowed graves of his family and friends to be made in 
a corner of his field, which in time was laid out as a cemetery 
and is known as the Gilley yard. Here, in unmarked graves, 
save by field stones without inscription lie William Gilley and 
his wife, Eunice Bunker Gilley, first settlers in Southwest Har- 
bor, who came here around 1784 and who have many descendants 
in the vicinity. Their son and his wife, Benjamin and Abigail 
Manchester Gilley, are buried close by. 

Stephen Gilley, son of Benjamin, a volunteer of Co. G. First 
Maine Heavy Artillery and his wife, Cordelia Cousins, with their 
little daughter Jennie lie near by ; Charles B. Gilley, also a vete- 
ran of the Civil War in which he lost his eyesight and was for 
many years of the last of his life totally blind, his first wife 
Delphina, who died at the age of nineteen, with their eight 
months old son ; his second wife Carrie ; Henry Edmund Day 
and his wife, Abigail Gilley, and three of their children who 
died in childhood within five weeks ; Mr. Day's second wife, 
Mahala Dolliver Holmes, and her little daughter; several mem- 
bers of the Reynolds family who were connected by marriage 
with the Gilleys have all found resting places here on land once 
owned by their ancestors. 

Here too, are the graves of Leonard Holmes and his wife 
Mary, who were a part of the business life of the settlement in 

Southwest Harbor 215 

their day. Mr. Holmes had a saw and grist mill and a store at 
what is now the Causeway at the entrance to the Mill Pond. 
This was a tide mill and was an important convenience to the 
early settlers. The old mill stones used to be seen lying under 
the swift current between the piers in the old mill race. Fifty 
or more years ago the late Aaron Gross took one of them and 
sunk it off the Norwood Cove shore as a mooring for his little 
fishing vessel. The other lies buried under the granite that 
forms the causeway. 

Lewis Holmes, son of Leonard, with his wife and several of 
their young children, Leonard's son John, and daughter Emeline 
and her husband, Seth Hamor, are buried in the southwest part 
of the yard. Andrew Tarr and his wife Susan lie here and here 
too, is the grave of Capt. Elisha Crane, who died at the age of 
38 but not before he had been a successful business man in many 
ways. He died in 1843 but his wife Abigail lived many years 
longer, dying in 1870 at the age of eighty-four. The graves of 
David Robbins and his wife, Lydia Gilley, are in the Crane lot, 
also the grave of little Ellen Robbins, aged four. In this yard 
as in all others there are many graves of little children. The 
tragic death of little Gertie Dodge many years ago is remem- 
bered by many. The child slipped on a wet floor and fell, dying 
in a few hours from the effect of the fall. 

Before 1880 occurred the death of little Freddie Rogers, the 
four year old son of Rev. and Mrs. Charles Rogers, pastor of the 
church here and who lived in the house now owned by Mrs. John 
F. Young which was then the parsonage of the Methodist church. 
Old residents whose graves are here are Mr. and Mrs. Elias 
Ginn, Capt. and Mrs. Samuel Rumill, Mrs. Jane Gross, Reuben 
Higgins and his wife Susan and two of their daughters. 

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Somers and their daughter, Sally 
Somers Clark Gardiner, lie in unmarked graves in the eastern 
part of the yard, near the entrance gate. They were among the 
earliest settlers in that locality coming to what is now the Lawler 
farm long before 1790, bringing with them the apple trees, cur- 
rant bushes and many plants and shrubs which have borne fruit 
all these years. The red peonies planted by Mrs. Somers on her 
arrival still bloom where she placed them as do the snow berries 

216 Traditions and Records 

and red roses now called "the Somers roses". Mrs, Somers had 
some knowledge of medicine and nursing and gave freely of her 
talents to her neighbors in time of need. In later life she and 
her daughter Sally were rather shunned by their neighbors and 
it was whispered among the superstitious ones that they pos- 
sessed supernatural powers. 

There are many unmarked graves in this yard and no one 
now knows the names or history of many who lie there. 


The burying ground near the old white church at Manset 
which was built before 1816 is one of the oldest on Mount Desert 
Island. Here are also many nameless graves marked only by 
field stones and some not marked at all and no one now knows 
who rests beneath the rude markers. Here is ample proof that 
this has long been a sea faring town as so many of the stones 
bear the title of Captain. In every graveyard on the Island 
there are stones erected in memory of those who were lost at 
sea or those who were buried in a far country. 

In this yard the grave of Nicholas Tucker is marked by a 
stone inscribed "Died in a foreign land July 14, 1839, aged 63. 
What is your life? It is of a vapour that appeareth for a little 
time and then vanisheth away." It is said that Mr. Tucker, 
when he shipped for his last voyage, took with him materials 
for his coffin as he said he had a presentiment that he would 
never return. A son, Andrew Tucker, who died April 22, 1819, 
at the age of two years and a daughter, Amanda M., whose death 
occurred in 1833 at the age of three years lie nearby, also a 
grandson, Horace D. Tucker, who died in 1860 at the age of one 
year. This stone is skillfully carved with the figure of an angel 
bearing a child in her arms. The little Horace was the son of 
Capt. Nathaniel and Sarah Tucker. The wife of Nicholas 
Tucker, Mrs. Betsey (Gott) Tucker, went to Bluehill after the 
death of her husband to pass her declining years with her son, 
whose home was there and it is in that town that she was buried. 

This burial ground like all others has many graves of young 
mothers and little children. We read the record of "Cordelia, 
daughter of Joshua and Lavonia Mayo, died 1850, aged 15." 

SouTHWi;sT Harbor 217 

This little girl was said to have amused herself during a thunder 
shower by holding her head under the dripping eaves of the 
house, from which proceeding the child took cold and died. 
Mothers in this vicinity ever since have told this story to their 
children and warned them against such experience. 

Capt. Benjamin Ward and his wife Margaret lie here and be- 
side them their children, "Benj. Jr., died 1850, aged 18" and 
"Miriam, aged IS, died 1851." 

The graves of William H. Ward and his wife, Hannah E., 
and of Reuben and Lucy Keene, all respected citizens of the 
town are in this yard. 

All visitors pause at the grave of "Jno. Brown, U. S. Navy, 
Rev. War" which is the inscription on a simple marker erected 
by the D. A. R. Society of Bangor. This man is said to have 
served with John Paul Jones in 1780 on his flagship and took 
part in several famous naval battles. 

The graves of Capt. William A. and his wife, Joanna Brown, 
are near those of their children, Mercy aged sixteen, Nathaniel 
aged four, Nathan C. aged four weeks, an infant daughter and 
Robert H. who died in 1858 at the age of thirty. 

Sarah, wife of Nathaniel Higgins, died in 1855, aged 33. 
The grave of Mrs. Rebecca Moore is at the head of a line of 
resting places of her children ; "Gilbert H., died in 1850, aged 
22"; "Benjamin Franklin, died 1842, at the age of 17" and 
"Phebe Maria, aged two, died in 1834." Capt. Benjamin Spur- 
ling Moore, husband of Rebecca, was lost at sea in 1843. 

The grave of Mary A., wife of William Stanley, shows a 
young mother who died in 1851 at the age of 20. Andrew W. 
Moore, born Oct. 18, 1839, died 1906, is inscribed on his stone. 

A little stone in the far corner records the spot where was laid 
little Angelia, seven year old daughter of William and Delia 
McKenzie in 1849. 

Rufus W., son of Capt. Rufus and Margaret King, died in 
November, 1857, at the age of 13. Wallace C. died in 1848 at 
the age of 6, and thirteen year old Ella Nora died in 1860. Capt, 
King and his wife Margaret lie at the head of this line of little 
graves. Another youth, Joseph, son of Peter and Phebe Dolli- 
ver, died in 1850 at the age of nineteen. His mother, Phebe 
Dolliver, lived to the age of 76 and dying in 1876 is buried near 
her son. 

218 Traditions and Records 

In the woods to the west of the Manset schoolhouse is a field 
and the traces of a cellar where Peter and Phebe Dolliver lived 
their lives and reared their family. When Peter died in 1871, 
he requested that his grave be made on his own land and accord- 
ingly he was buried in a corner of the field. The solitary grave, 
marked with a marble stone, is overgrown now with trees and 
underbrush, but anyone following the old road will come upon 
it in the forest. When Mrs. Dolliver's death occurred some 
years later her family remembered that she had expressed the 
wish not to be laid in that lonely spot on the old place and so her 
grave is by the side of her son in the churchyard while her hus- 
band rests on the land which he cleared and tilled for a lifetime. 

The grave of "Laura, wife of Capt. R. S. Newman, died 1860, 
aged 26", shows another young woman passing away at the be- 
ginning of life and little William King, aged four who died in 
1834, lies near by. 

The stone reading "Capt. Lemuel Dolliver" shows that a sea 
faring man rests in that grave. 

The names of John Adams and his wife Mary are carved on 
a modest shaft in the southeastern comer of the yard. Mr. and 
Mrs. Adams came to Southwest Harbor from Washington 
County and for some years they occupied the old David Robin- 
son house, which stood near the house at the head of the harbor 
now owned by Mrs. Howard Bartlett. They had one daughter 
Anne, who died from the effects of a cold taken when bathing in 
the sea with other children. Mr. Adams later bought the land 
at Bass Harbor west of the Marsh bridge and south of the road 
where they had a house and lived there for many years. 

The graves of Horace Stanley and his son Calvin are in the 
lot near those of Peter S. Stanley and his wife, Sarah Newman, 
parents of Horace. Mrs. Stanley died in 1864 at the age of 
fifty, while her husband lived until 1892. The stone bearing the 
name of Isaac Stanley, who died in 1862 at the age of 61, is 
buried deep in leaves and moss. The daughter of Mr. and Mrs. 
Peter Stanley, Mary Etta, died in 1851 at the age of thirteen. 

Close by is the grave of Cynthia M., daughter of Twisden 
and Patience Bouden, who died in 1852, aged fifteen. Probably 
many of these children whose stones are marked in the fifties 

Southwest Harbor 219 

died from the diphtheria epidemic which rag^ed among the people 
in that decade. Mr. and Mrs. Bouden (Patience Day) lived in 
what was later known as the Dudley Dolliver house. They 
moved to Rockland. Many faded flags are fluttering over the 
graves showing that a goodly number of the men had served 
their country in time of war. 

A large marble shaft to the right of the front entrance to the 
churchyard is marked with the name of Esther, wife of Philip 
Langley, died 1868, aged 77 . Across the path to the south is 
the unmarked grave of Philip Langley, now hardly discernible. 
This man was born on the Island of Guernsey off the coast of 
France. He came to Mount Desert Island before 1790 as his 
name is among those who signed the oath of allegiance which 
was necessary for any who wished to take part in town business. 
He married Margaret Welch Moore, widow of Samuel Moore, 
who had been lost at sea leaving a family of young children, and 
Prof. William Otis Sawtelle in his record says, "Philip made a 
good stepfather to his four sons." Philip Langley was highly 
esteemed among his neighbors and as he could speak both 
French and English, he was intrusted with some business for 
Bartholomy and Maria Therese de Cadillac de Gregoire and he 
made two trips to Quebec and signed many papers as a witness, 
including many of the de Gregoire deeds. He was given the 
island now known as Greening's in Southwest Harbor for his 
services and he left his farm at Seawall to dwell on his island 
property. After the death of Margaret Welch Moore Langley 
he married Esther Gott and when he died some time after 1830, 
the property went to relatives of the Gott family. It is said that 
Philip was eighty years old when his marriage to Esther Gott 
took place. 

In a lot within the churchyard enclosed by a picket fence are 
the graves of Augustus Rafenal who died in 1845, aged 82, and 
his wife Nancy, whose death occurred in 1842 at the age of 89. 
The verse on the gravestone of Augustus Rafenal is — 

"And let this feeble body fail. 

And let it faint or die. 
My soul shall quit this mournful vale 

And soar to worlds on high." 

220 Traditions and Records 

Their son Simeon's stone records that he was born at Mount 
Desert and that he died Dec. 12, 1820, at the age of 27. The 
verse on his stone is one that was very popular about that time 
and is found in almost every burying ground in the town. 

"Remember now as you pass by 
In bloom of health, so once was I. 
As I am now, so you shall be 
Prepare for death and follow me." 

Mr. and Mrs. Rafenal were married April 13, 1785, at Bor- 
deaux, France, and came to Mount Desert in the early days of its 
settlement. They took up land at what is now Manset and owned 
a large tract there including the Clark Hopkins field and extend- 
ing back into the woods. They built a house on this land and 
brought up their family. That they were people of standing in 
their native land is shown by the few household treasures that 
have been handed down to their descendants. These include 
some very fine china plates, choice little wine glasses, delicate 
old silver spoons and a quilt of the old time "copperplate" print 
in mulberry and blue, the work of Mrs. Rafenal's own hands. 
In 1829 she purchased a large family Bible and in it she wrote 
her family record in beautiful handwriting. On the first leaf of 
the book is written, "Presented by Mrs. Ann Rafenal to her 
daughter Susan Rafenal, Annodominni 1829 Jan'y 8, Mount Des- 
ert." The name of Susannah Rafenal is stamped in gilt letters 
on the leather cover. The daughter Susan married John Moore 
and their daughter, Mary Ann Strickland, married Clark Hop- 
kins and the Bible came down through the generations to Mrs. 
Hopkins' daughter, then to her granddaughter, Mrs. Celia Wil- 
son Hamilton, in whose possession it now is. Within the little 
enclosed plot are the graves of John and Susan Moore and Mr. 
and Mrs. Clark Hopkins. 

In the summer of 1934 this churchyard was cleared of bushes 
and underbrush by the boys of the C C C camp. Company 158. 


On November 3, 1792, Jacob Lurvey of Newburyport, Mass., 
bought of Joseph Bunker one hundred acres of land "from the 

Southwest Harbor 221 

shore to the mountain", i.e. the Norwood Cove shore to the foot 
of Beech Mountain. His first log cabin was near the shore, but 
later he built a house on the high ridge near the foot of the 
mountain where the land was free from stones and more fertile 
than the shore lot. When his wife, Hannah Boynton Lurvey, 
died on April 1, 1839, at the age of 81 years, 7 months, her grave 
was made in the cleared field not far from the house. Jacob 
Lurvey died Sept. 11, 1853, at the age of 92 and was laid by her 
side. On the slate slab which marks his grave is engraved "He 
was a Soldier of the Revolution and was twice taken prisoner 
during that war. When the memory of kings and princes shall 
have crumbled to dust the name of this man will be held in 
grateful remembrance." 

The graves of several of the young grandchildren of this 
pioneer couple are here ; Nathan Curtis Lurvey, who died April 
5, 1848, aged six months and an infant who lived but two weeks, 
both sons of Enoch and Rebecca Higgins Lurvey, and also their 
fourteen year old daughter Hannah, who died Oct. 5, 1848. 

Hannah, wife of William Gilley of Baker's Island, who was 
the eldest daughter of Jacob and Hannah Lurvey is buried near 
her parents. She died March 24, 1852, aged seventy years. She 
was born in Byfield, Mass., Dec. 8, 1782, ten years before the 
family moved to Mount Desert. Soon after her marriage in 
1802 to William Gilley, they went to Baker's Island where they 
spent their lives and brought up their twelve children — six sons 
and six daughters. They were separated in their old age each 
going to live with some member of their family and when 
Hannah died she was brought here, as she had requested that 
she be buried with her parents near her old home. 

Isaac F. Lurvey's stone records that he was a member of Co. 
E. 28 Me. Regiment and that he died at Augusta, Maine, Sept. 
7, 1863, aged 38. He was the son of Isaac and Abigail Dodge 
Lurvey and was always called by his second name of Freeman. 
His wife was his cousin Rebecca, eldest daughter of Enoch and 
Rebecca Higgins Lurvey. 

Lemuel and Jacob Lurvey, grandsons of the first Jacob 
Lurvey are buried in this lot. Lemuel, born 1839, had an honor- 
able record of service in the Civil War where he suffered many 

222 Traditions and Records 

privations while a prisoner in Andersonville and Libby prisons 
where he lost his health. He died in 1923. His brother Jacob, 
bom 1844, died in Portland at the home of his niece, Mrs. H. 
Edwin Stanley, in 1928, and was brought to his home here for 

The Herrick family lived on the lot adjoining the Lurvey 
place and members of that family lie here with those who were 
their neighbors for a lifetime. 

Isaac Herrick was first of the name in this vicinity, dying at 
the age of fifty-seven years, seven months. His death occurred 
Sept. 15, 1852. His wife Lavinia lived to the age of seventy-five 
years, dying July 20, 1872. Two of their sons, William and Asa 
Herrick, are buried near their parents. 

Pine and spruce trees have grown tall over what was a grassy 
field when the first graves were made in this spot nearly one hun- 
dred years ago (1938). 


After the death of Jacob Lurvey his home place became the 
property of his youngest son Enoch and he was not willing that 
the family burying ground on the place should be enlarged. So 
a committee was formed to purchase land for a family cemetery 
and on April 15, 1865, this committee purchased of Enoch Lur- 
vey and William Lawler the land on the road to Somesville, now 
the site of Evergreen Cemetery. The sum of $18 was paid for 
the lot, which was at first called Lurvey cemetery and later 
changed to Evergreen to distinguish it from the old family lot. 

The sons and daughters of Jacob and Hannah Lurvey re- 
served for themselves the lots at the front of the new cemetery 
with the plan that their children were to be buried in the next 
row of lots. The need of a public burying ground was felt in 
the community and after a while the neighbors were permitted to 
buy lots in this yard. Several generations of Lurveys lie here. 
Samuel Lurvey and his wife, Abigail Gilley ; Enoch Lurvey and 
his wife, Rebecca Higgins ; John Carroll and his wife, Rachel 
Lurvey ; Isaac Lurvey and his wife, Abigail Dodge, all sons and 
daughters of Jacob and Hannah Boynton Lurvey. 

Southwest Harbor 223 

They all lived to a ripe old age, their stones recording eighty 
and ninety years and more. Samuel Lurvey, son of the first 
Samuel, lies in the second row of graves, dying at the age of 
seventy-six. He was one of the soldiers of the "bloodless 
Aroostook war", volunteering for service and going to Houlton 
where he was for some time as a part of the garrison of that 
town while the boundary was in dispute. His wife, Joan Mayo 
Lurvey, 1815-1907, spent her ninety-one years in good works 
among her neighbors. She was among the first in the work for 
maintenance of the church, she was sent for in sickness or mis- 
fortune, she was present when the children of the community 
were born and she prepared the dead for their graves. She had 
no children of her own but she took two orphans into her home 
and reared them as her own. "Aunt Joan" as she was almost 
universally called, was a remarkable power for good all through 
her long life. 

Gilbert L. Lurvey of Co. G. Eighteenth Regiment of Maine 
Volunteers, with his wife, Mary E. Gilley Lurvey, and their son, 
George A., lie in their lot here. John Dodge Lurvey and his 
wife, Hannah Carroll Lurvey, lie side by side in the lot which 
they selected as their last resting place. Mrs. Lurvey was an- 
other woman whose good works were many. Always cheerful 
and smiling, she too, went to the bedside of the sick and helped 
to usher in the newborn. She was a valiant worker for the 
church and she brought up a large family of sons and daughters. 
One daughter Alice and an infant son are buried here. 

Cyrus Lurvey's stone records that he was a member of the 
United States Navy during the Civil War. His wife, Mary Ann, 
who died at the age of sixty-three, their son, Charles A., who 
died in 1871 at the age of sixteen, another son, Arthur C, who 
grew to manhood, a daughter, Elva May, and four infant chil- 
dren sleep their last sleep here with their parents. 

Sergeant Enoch Lurvey, Co. H. Fourth Maine Infantry, is en- 
graved on a small marble stone erected in memory of one who 
was lost at sea. He served his country through the Civil War, 
one of the four sons of Enoch and Rebecca Higgins Lurvey who 
answered the call at the beginning of the struggle, was wounded 
once, but served to the end, came home to his family and was lost 

224 Traditions and Records 

at sea December 24, 1867. His body was never recovered. His 
infant son Georgie is buried in this lot. 

William G. Lurvey died 1879 at the age of fifty-one. He was 
the son of the first Samuel Lurvey and served in the Civil War. 

Levi and Lydia Bartlett Lurvey and their infant daughter 
rest here. Levi was the son of Isaac and Abigail Dodge Lurvey. 

The grave of Mrs. Myra Lurvey Walls and that of her sister, 
Mrs. Mabel Lurvey Tinker, are in this yard. They were daugh- 
ters of John D. and Hannah C. Lurvey. Capt. Thomas Milan, 
his wife, Ellen Maria Lurvey Milan, and their two daughters, 
Mrs. Hattie Milan Hamblen and Millie Milan, are buried in their 
lot near the center of the yard. Capt. Milan followed the sea 
for many years, retiring to take the position of head keeper of 
the lighthouse on Mount Desert Rock where the family lived for 
a long time. The two daughters, seldom separated in life, died 
within a few hours of each other and their double funeral was 
held at the home where they were born and had always lived. 

One lot holds the graves of William H. Bartlett and his 
young wife Mary, who died in 1870 at the age of twenty-three, 
another little grave is marked with the name of Ruth F., daugh- 
ter of Jacob and Hannah B. Mayo, a tiny stone in the center 
bears the inscription "Baby Lawler died 1895 aged 3 months." 
This baby was the daughter of Allen and Caroline R. Lawler. 

A large thin marble slab marks the grave of Isaac P. Mayo, 
died 1866, aged ninety-two and that of his wife, Rosanna Young 
Mayo, who died in 1865, aged eighty-three. These were the par- 
ents of Mrs. Joann H. Lurvey. The stone reads "Mark the per- 
fect man and behold the upright for the end of that man is 

One lot is occupied by the graves of Edward P. Dodge, died 
1883, at the age of fifty-seven and his wife, Hannah B., who died 
in 1906. Benjamin H. Dodge, Co. 28th Maine Regiment of Vol- 
unteers, 1827-1903, and his wife, Lucinda T., 1831-1911, are 
buried here. Deacon Dodge was a prominent member of the 
Baptist church and a deacon for many years. He served as clerk 
of the church for a long time and the records of the church in 
his clear and beautiful handwriting are preserved. Deacon 
Dodge used to go from house to house with a quantity of small 

Southwest Harbor 225 

wares — buttons, elastic, stationery, sewing materials, etc. — which 
in those days were not always to be found in the village stores 
and which the housewives were very glad to have brought to 
their doors. He also oiled and regulated clocks which was a 
great convenience to his customers. Frequently his stores in- 
cluded some candy and the children were always delighted to see 
him approaching. 

Mrs. Dodge was an energetic and capable woman, foremost 
in good works and very hospitable. She was a native of Bucks- 

Frank Higgins, whose wife was Eldora Lurvey, and Edward 
Jackson, whose wife was Agnes Lurvey Delaney (sisters), have 
graves in the yard and a stone is erected in memory of Daniel 
Wilbert Walls, who died in Miragoane, St. Domingo in 1879. 
His wife was Margaret Lurvey, daughter of John and Hannah, 
who afterwards became the wife of Henry Trundy. 

Capt. Willis Carver and Theodore Farmer, first and second 
husbands of Lorinda Lurvey Farmer, are buried in one of the 
Lurvey lots. 

In the northwestern comer of the yard is the Higgins lot 
where lie Seth Higgins, Co. E twenty-eighth Regiment of Maine 
Volunteers, who died in 1877 at the age of fifty-three, his wife, 
Emily M. Herrick, whose death occurred in 1892 at the age of 
sixty-one, their son William, who was drowned April 5, 1893, 
aged thirty-two and their nephew, Orville Young, who died at 
the age of thirty-one. 

The grave of Ella, wife of Orlando Gott, is in this lot. 

"William Farquharson, a native of Prince Edward Island, 
died 1900" is the inscription on one marble stone and the grave 
of Charles B. Young is near by, also that of Mary J. Seavey, 
1837-1906. Another soldier of the Civil War rests in this yard ; 
Minot Getchell, Corporal Co. B. First Massachusetts Infantry. 

Horace C. Brown, whose grave is here, was an interesting 
figure in the life of the community. He was the son of Rev. 
Charles Brown, who was minister of the Congregational church 
here for some years. His horse and cart filled with merchandise 
was a familiar and welcome sight to housewives of fifty years 
ago as his stock was varied and ample and its owner, a man of 
interesting qualities, who was welcomed in any of the homes. 

226 Traditions and Records 

Many graves originally made in this yard have been removed 
to Mount Height but the yard is still (1938) in use and many of 
the lots well cared for. In 1934 the boys of the C C C camp, 
No. 158, rebuilt the stone wall on the eastern side of the yard and 
replaced the broken fence with one of neat cedar rails. 


Mount Height cemetery may well be called a memorial to 
Mrs. Emily Robinson Farnsworth, through whose efforts the 
land was bought and the yard laid out. Mrs. Farnsworth used 
to say in her inimitable way that "the living can speak for them- 
selves but I am looking out for the dead." 

There were several small burying grounds in the town and 
many private ones but there was need of a public cemetery. 
None of the burial places could be enlarged as the owners of the 
adjoining properties would not sell. 

Mrs. Farnsworth raised money for the purchase of a new 
fence for the High Road burying ground and she also raised 
funds for the purchase of a new hearse to replace the ancient 
one purchased long before by the Ladies Benevolent Society of 

After some years of searching for a suitable place that could 
be bought for this purpose, Mrs. Farnsworth was able to pur- 
chase from the Brown family, the dry and sandy hill to the left 
of the road to Bass Harbor which had been known for years as 
Hio. A company was formed for its purchase and in 1900 the 
first graves were made there. 

Many graves have been removed from private burying 
grounds and from those that are neglected and many families 
from other towns have purchased lots. The boundaries have 
been several times enlarged. 


There were a number of graves made on the Fernald Farm, 
all members of the Fernald family or connections. The first one 
was probably that of Liab Gott, son of Stephen and Patience 
Gott, who died by accident in 1789. Sally Lurvey Ladd Gott, 

Southwest Harbor 227 

first wife of the second Liab Gott, died May 20, 1816, and was 
buried there. She was the daughter of Jacob and Hannah Lur- 
vey and was bom in Newbury, Mass., June 22, 1786. She died 
when twin daughters were born. 

Sarah Wasgatt Gott, second wife of Liab Gott, died in 1827 
or 28 and was buried here. Andrew Tarr, Sr., was buried here 
and Patience Gott Tarr, born Aug. 18, 1737, died in October of 
1824 or 25 and was laid to rest here on the land which had been 
her home for her lifetime. 

Tobias Fernald, first of the name to be at Southwest Harbor, 
died about 1839 and his wife. Comfort Tarr Fernald, died in 
February of 1848. This farm had been her home all her life. 

Eben Fernald, son of Tobias and Comfort, died in 1884 as did 
also his wife, Sophronia Wasgatt, and they were laid in the 
family lot by the side of the year-old son John who died in 1857. 
There were graves of several children and some unidentified 
graves in two different places on the land. When the farm was 
sold (1921) and passed out of the possession of the Fernald 
family the graves were removed ; some taken to the Gilley bury- 
ing ground and others to Mount Height. 


On the road to Seawall there is a small private burial plot be- 
longing to members of the Moore family who owned the land 
when the first graves were made there. The stones record the 
names of Joseph Moore, died Nov. 17, 1872, aged seventy-nine 
years. His wife, Joann S., died Jan. 19, 1863, aged sixty-six 
years. There are the graves of Melville Moore ; Lanie F., daugh- 
ter of Joseph and Joann Moore, died Sept. 19, 1862, aged twenty- 
one years ; Margaret S., daughter of the same, died 1866, aged 
forty-seven and Ferdinand P., son of Joseph and Joann Moore, 
died at State Hospital, New Haven, Conn., Oct. 3, 1872, aged 
fifteen years. Another record is that of John S. Moore, who 
died in 1914 at the age of eighty-six years. 

The Newman cemetery is also at Seawall and is some dis- 
tance from the road. It is quite overgrown with bushes. It is 
on land originally belonging to the Newman family which 

228 Traditions and Records 

name is most frequent on the stones there. The following names 
are recorded on the markers of marble or granite : 

Sans Stanley, born 1827, died 1900. 

Halsey Stanley died 1880, aged twenty-six. He was lost on 
the schooner Kate Newman with others from Southwest Harbor 
and his body was washed ashore and brought home. 

John Stanley, 2nd, died June 28, 1866, aged thirty-three. 

Samuel S. Stanley, drowned on Georges Banks, April 2, 1871, 
aged twenty-eight. 

Capt. Sans Stanley, born May 14, 1791, died July 26, 1858. 

Fanny S. Dolliver. Passed to a higher life. Mar. 23, 1866, 
in her forty-first year. 

Fanny, wife of Capt. Sans Stanley, died Nov. 19, 1849, aged 

Anne Hodgdon died 1846, aged twenty-six. 

Adelbert Newman died 1871, aged seventeen. 

Archie Newman died 1889, aged seventeen. 

Alma Newman died 1863, aged four years. 

Emily Newman died 1850, aged twenty-two years. 

Dolly Newman died 1878, aged eighty-seven. 

Thomas Newman died 1875, aged seventy-five. 

John E. Stanley, born 1850, died 1908. 

Fanny Billings died 1880, aged sixty-three. 

Harvel D. Stanley died 1869, aged thirty-three. 

Annie Torrey died 1907, aged sixty-three. 

Benjamin S. Newman, born 1814, died 1887. 

John Stanley died 1867, aged sixty-one. 

Mary E., wife of Guy V. Young, died 1901. 

Betsey L., wife of Thomas Moore, died 1904. 

Alvah Dolliver died 1896, aged forty-four. 

Abraham Morris died 1885, aged seventy-two. 

Susan, wife of Abraham Morris, died 1898, aged seventy-six. 

Thomas S., son of John Jr. and Fanny Dolliver, died 1849; 
and Julia S. A., daughter of John Jr. and Fanny Dolliver, died 
1849. These two little graves are side by side. 

Capt. Benjamin A. Moore died 1898. 

His wife, Julia A., died 1909. 

Lydia Dolliver died 1845. 

Southwest Harbor 229 

Rachel Moore, wife of Philip Moore, died 1825. 

Welch Moore died Feb. 7, 1845, aged forty-two. 

Thomas Moore died 1858, aged forty-seven. 

Samuel Moore died 1839, aged sixty-eight. 

Sarah Moore died 1861, aged eighty-eight. 

Gilbert H. Moore who fell in defence of his country. May 16, 
1864, aged 23. On same monument Ezekiel Moore died 1899. 
His wife Mary died 1887. 

There are a few grass grown graves in a clearing near the 
gravel pit at Seawall on land where once John S. Dolliver lived. 
The stones bear the names of John S. Dolliver who died Jan. 22, 
1864, aged 63 years and that of his wife Fanny who died Sept. 
13, 1875 at the age of 7Z. 

Near by are the last resting places of two children of William 
H. and Mary S. Dolliver — Hattie F. and Aggie S. and the grave 
of Edward Dolliver whose stone bears the words "California 
Pioneer." The older residents of the vicinity say that several 
graves of the family of James Gott are in this spot but no stones 
mark their places. 


In the Tremont cemetery are the names of Benson, Daws, 
Moore, Sawyer, Holden, Watson, Mitchell, Abbott, Rich, Clark, 
Albee, Norwood, Dodge, McDonald, Kittredge, Booth and others. 
One stone is marked "Robert Stevens, died August 4, 1866 on 
board barque Maria Scammell on voyage from Valparaiso to 
Boston aged forty five." 

The earliest date is 1850 on a stone at the grave of the son of 
John S. Dodge who died in that year at the age of five years. 
Mr. Dodge himself died August 5, 1854 from injuries received 
on board his ship. He was warping in the vessel to the wharf 
at Clark's Cove, Southwest Harbor, when the heavy rope some- 
how caught him, wrapped around his legs and the whole weight 
of the ship crushed his legs so that he died in a short time at the 
home of Nathan Clark where he was taken. The nearest doctor 
was at Ellsworth and a boy was sent there on horseback with 
orders to ride at top speed, but when the doctor arrived Capt. 
Dodge had died. He was a man of ability and was the first 

230 Traditions and Records 

chairman of the board of selectmen in the new town when Tre- 
mont was set off as a town from Mount Desert in 1845. His 
clear and fine handwriting is in existence on the early town 
books. His death was a heavy loss to the community. 

The Clarks were descendants of the pioneer Nathan Clark 
who came to Southwest Harbor from Sharon, Mass., in the early 
days of the settlement of the island. His son Eaton settled at 
the head of Bass Harbor where he had a tide mill, built vessels 
and carried on several kinds of business giving employment to 
many men. The Sawyer family has been connected with the 
history of the town since its earliest days as have also many of 
the other names recorded here. 


This little burial place on the right hand side of the road 
leading to Bernard village was laid out in the early 1850's as a 
private family cemetery for members of the Rich family on 
whose land it was, but the friends and neighbors were permitted 
to lay their dead there. The earliest grave marked is that of 
Margaret Hamblen, who died in 1851 at the age of four years. 

Ann B. Roamer's death occurred in 1858 and that of her in- 
fant child, Angus M., in 1854. 

The stone in memory of Tyler E. Rich records that he was 
"killed at the Battle of the Wilderness" in 1864, aged twenty-two 

Francis K. Young, a soldier of the Aroostook War, died in 
1890 and his second wife, Mary Ann, died in 1874. 

The resting place of Capt. Elias Rich is in the upper row of 
graves. He died Dec. 14, 1867, at the age of eighty-eight. A dis- 
coloration of the stone which frequently appears on marble has 
assumed the outline of a crowned head quite plainly to be seen 
from the road. After this had appeared the neighbors of this 
good old man recalled that he used often to express the hope of 
"being privileged to wear a crown of glory in the world to come" 
when he gave his testimony at the weekly prayer meeting which 
he faithfully attended, and superstitious ones whispered that this 
was something supernatural. Holman F. Day has written a 
poem about this stone but has used his license as a poet to write 

Southwest Harbor 231 

without strict adherence to the truth. Instead of being "on the 
town" as the poem states, Capt. Rich amassed considerable prop- 
erty which was inherited by his heirs. Many stories have been 
told about the stone — some that the face is an exact likeness of 
Capt. Rich and that the stone marking the grave of his good wife 
Sally, who died in 1882 at the age of ninety, also had a likeness 
of her, but this is not true. 

The poem by Holman F. Day is given here as a curiosity but 
not because it is true. 


Elias Rich would kneel at night by the wooden kitchen chair, 

He would clutch the rungs and bow his head and pray his bed- 
time prayer. 

And his prayer was ever the same old plea, repeated for two- 
score years : 

"Oh, Lord Most High, please hear my cry from this vale of sin 
and tears. 

I haint no 'count and I haint done much that's worthy in Thy 

But I've done the best that I could, dear Lord, accordin' to my 

I've done as much for my feller man as really, Lord, I could, 

Consid'rn' my pay is a dollar a day and I've earnt it choppin' 

I've never hankered no great on earth for more'n my food and 

And all of the meat that I've had to eat was cut near horn or 
hoof ; 

But I thank Thee, Lord, that I've earnt my way and I haint got 
'on the town' 

And when I die I know that I shall sartin wear a crown." 

232 Traditions and Re;cords 

Whenever he mumbled his simple prayer in the kitchen by his 

Aunt Rich would rattle the supper pans and sniff with a scornful 

She'd never "professed" as the saying is, she never had felt a 

And she constantly prodded Elias with, " 'Taint prayer that 

counts, it's sprawl." 
There are some who are born for the pats of life and some for 

the cuffs and whacks. 
Elias fought the wolf of want as best he might with his axe ; 
He even aided with scanty store some desolate Tom or Jim, 
But at last when his poor old arms gave out no hands were 

reached to him. 
Folks said that a man who was paralyzed required some special 

And allowed that the poor farm was the place; so they carried 

the old folks there. 
'Twas a heavy cross for Elias' wife but Elias ne'er complained, 
To all of her frettings he made reply; "When our Heavenly 

Home is gained, 
'Twill be the sweeter for troubles here and though we're on the 

God keeps up there our mansion fair and He has our golden 


They were dreary years that Elias lived, one half of his body 

He sat in his cold, bare town-farm room and patiently spelled 

and read 
The promise his old black Bible gave, and then he'd lift his eyes 
And look right up through the dingy walls to his mansion in the 

They mockingly called him "Heavenly Crown" when he talked 

of his faith, but he 
Smiled sweetly ever and meekly said, " I know what I can see." 

Southwest Harbor 233 

When he died at last and the parson preached above the stained, 

pine box, 
He said, "Perhaps this simple faith was a bit too orthodox; 
Perhaps allowance should be made for the metaphors divine 
And yet, my friends, I'll not presume to make such province 

Though in that Book the highest thought can find transcendent 

'Tis primer too, for the poor and plain, the unlearned and the 

And so I say no man today should seek to tear it down, 
Nor flout the homely, honest soul that claims its golden crown." 

Friends placed above Elias' grave a plain, white marble stone. 
And months went by. Then all at once 'twas seen that there had 

Upon the polished marble slab a shading that, 'twas said. 
Took on a shape extremely like Elias' shaggy head. 
Then soon above the shadowy brows a crown was slowly limned, 
And though Aunt Rich scrubbed zealously the thing could not 

be dimmed. 

She always scoffed Elias' faith without rebuke through life 
But now, the neighbors all averred, Elias braved his wife. 
For though with brush and soap and sand she scrubbed and 

rubbed by day, 
The figure seemed to grow each night and those there are who 

That many a time when the moon was dim, a wraith with ghostly 

Wrought there with spectral brush and limned that picture 

deeper still. 
And there it is unto this day and strangers passing by 
Turn in and stand above the mound to gaze with awe-struck eye. 
And wonder if Elias came from Heaven stealing down 
To mutely say in this quaint way that now he wears his crown. 

Holman F. Day in Pine Tree Ballads. 

Used here by courtesy of Dodd, Mead & Co., New York City. Pub- 
lishers of the books of Holman F. Day. 

234 Traditions and Re;cords 


By the side of the road leading from Somesville to Pretty 
Marsh there are a few lonely graves marked with the name of 
Kenison. One stone bears the name of Samuel Kenison who 
died in 1873, aged seventy-five. 

The verse on the stone is — 

"Behold and see as you pass by, 
Remember you were born to die; 
The young must die as well as old. 
And slumber in the grave so cold." 

A daughter Eliza is buried close by and her verse is — 
"Eliza, thou wast very dear, 
Unto friends and parents here ; 
But dearer to thy Christ above, 
And He has called thee home in love." 

A second verse on the same stone is the familiar one found in 
so many old burying grounds : 

"Remember then as you pass by 
As you are now so once was I. 
As I am now so you will be. 
Prepare for death and follow me." 


The cemetery on Town Hill, always well kept and with some 
very fine stones set there, carries the memory of some of the 
earliest settlers. The oldest stone is that of little Hannah Mayo 
who died in 1826, aged eight years. John Thomas died in 1829 
but most of the markers date from the 1850's to the present day. 
Many flags flutter in this yard on Memorial Day showing the 
graves of those who served their country in the Civil War. 
William Higgins was lost at sea on January 18, 1857, at the age 
of twenty-eight. Charles Branscom died at Port au Prince, San 
Domingo, W. L, aged thirty-six years and one shaft records the 
death of James C. Richardson who died at Wilmington, N. C, 
in 1868 and that of Sylvester B. Richardson, aged nineteen, who 

Southwest Harbor 235 

was killed at Antietam in 1862. Both these young men were 
sons of Elon and Jane Richardson. 

Deacon Gideon Mayo, who died in 1859 at the age of ninety, 
is buried in this yard. He was the oldest child of Joseph and 
Ruth Snow Mayo and came to Mount Desert from Eastham, 
Cape Cod, in 1778. He became one of the first citizens of the 
town and his descendants are many. Gideon Mayo, Jr., who 
died in 1846 at the age of twenty-nine was his son by his second 

There are many unusual proper names in this yard. Zeruah, 
Arwilla, Zalmuna, Anath, Keziah, Senora, Aldana, Orra, Zena, 
Lorenette, are names not frequently found in this locality. 

The surnames are many of the same as found in many other 
parts of Mount Desert. Knowles, Clinkard, Higgins, Mayo, 
Hadley, Thomas, Bunker, Salisbury, Paine, Hamor, Ingraham, 
Reed and Walls, are names connected with the earliest history of 
the settlement of Mount Desert Island. 


On the level plain of Beech Hill is a little yard where sleep 
many of the early pioneers of Mount Desert Island. There is 
the grave of Davis Wasgatt who died in 1843, aged ninety-two 
years. His stone is inscribed, "A Soldier of the Revolution" 
and the verse on the slab reads — 

"His age was great, his piety sincere. 
Too wise, too good to dwell among us here. 
He's gone to Heaven, to live with saints above. 
Where Jesus is to feast upon his love." 

Mr. Wasgatt was prominent among the first settlers, active 
in town affairs and the church. Nearby is a stone reading, 
"Rachel, wife of Davis Wasgatt, died June 3, 1841 aged 89." 

In the same row are the graves of "Rev. Asa Wasgatt, died 
Jan. 2Z, 1879, aged 85, and Sarah, his wife, whose death was on 
Dec. 29, 1855, at the age of 59. Another stone bears the inscrip- 
tion, "Their daughter Sarah, died in Boston, July 8, 1849." 
These are ancestors of several of the families prominent on 
Mount Desert Island. 

236 Traditions and Records 

A shaft in the northern part of this yard reads, "Sacred to 
the memory of Rev. Mark Tuel, who departed this life July 15, 
1841, aged 33 years." 

The brief history of this young preacher is told elsewhere. 
Where he came from or who his people were it now seems im- 
possible to ascertain. 

About in the center of the yard is the grave of John Clark, 
who died May 2, 1857, at the age of 75 years. One of his sons 
became Bishop of the Methodist church of Ohio. The three 
wives of John Clark also lie here: Sarah died Mar. 21, 1844, 
Deborah died Nov. 17, 1851, aged 55 and Mary E. died Nov. 17, 
1853, aged 61. One little stone in the lot records the deaths of 
Mercy and Margaret, little daughters of John Clark, aged respec- 
tively 5 and 2 years who died within the same week. This was 
the year when the dread disease diphtheria swept over Mount 
Desert taking heavy toll among little children. 

Some youths who were soldiers in the World War are buried 
in this yard and also a young Swedish man who was drowned 
in Echo Lake a few years ago and whose antecedents were 
unknown here. 

William W. Atherton and Mary, his wife, early settlers in 
this vicinity, are buried on the land which they owned and occu- 
pied for many years. His death occurred in 1876 and his wife 
died in 1883. 


On the western slope of Beech Hill among the pine and 
spruce trees is the private burying ground of the Richardson 
family, descendants of the first settlers. Here lies John Gott 
Richardson who died Jan. 29, 1828, aged 67 years. Sarah 
Gamage, his wife died April 17, 1810, aged 47. A granite 
marker records the death of Stephen Richardson (3rd of that 
name) 1768-1853 and that of his wife Margaret (Webber) 1774- 

The resting place of Daniel Ladd who died Sept. 29, 1834, 
at the age of 31 years, is marked by a thin slab of slate. Daniel 
Ladd was the eldest child of Moses and Sarah Lurvey Ladd. 

Southwest Harbor 237 

Moses Ladd died leaving his young widow with several small 
children who were scattered among relatives and friends. 

The grave of Elvira, wife of Samuel Tarwell, who died April 
2, 1849 at the age of 33, is also marked by a slate gravestone. 

Susan E., daughter of George H. and Deborah Robinson, is 
buried here. She died June 11, 1849. 

A Masonic emblem is on the stone at the grave of Capt. Rich- 
ard Richardson who died Feb. 7, 1869, at the age of 72 years, 
6 months and 19 days. Nathaniel G. Richardson died Nov. 18, 
1861, aged 68 years, 9 months, and his wife, Mrs. Eleanor W. 
died Oct. 30, 1872, aged 77 years, 1 month. Her stone bears 
the inscription "The orphan's friend." She took into her home 
eight or more orphan children and gave them a mother's loving 
care. When a young mother died in the vicinity leaving little 
children, to that home came "Aunt Eleanor" as she was univer- 
sally called, to take to her home one or two of the motherless 
ones. The death of a father in those days usually made it neces- 
sary for the home to be broken up, the children scattered among 
kind-hearted relatives and neighbors, while the poor mother 
went out to service in places that could afford to employ her for 
very small wage. There was no way in those days for a woman 
to support her family by her own efforts, as woman's work was 
in small demand except for occasional aid in nursing or in work 
in the home at special times such as when illness invaded it. 
Life was difficult in a new settlement and there was small place 
for a lone woman. To many a grief-stricken parent, facing the 
dissolution of the household and the problem of care for the 
children, "Aunt Eleanor" must have appeared like a ministering 
angel when she came with offer of a home and care for the 
smallest ones. There were always friends who could find a 
place for an older child whose little hands might help with the 
work either inside or outside the house, but an infant was not 
so easily placed in those days of small quarters and large 
families and it was to the babies that the motherly arms of this 
good woman proved a refuge. Many families blessed the kind 
and generous heart of "Aunt Eleanor" and her adopted children 
held her in affectionate and grateful memory. The Richardson 

238 Traditions and Records 

family Bible, now in possession of Mrs. John Allen Somes, re- 
cords the marriage of Nathaniel G. Richardson and Eleanor W. 
Kellum Jones at Mount Desert, Maine, on Sept. 5, 1820, and 
states that she was born at "Virginia, Maryland, Sept. 7, 1795." 

The graves of Emily A., wife of William Danby, of Emily 
Mason who died Feb. 13, 1874, of Freddie W., six-year old son 
of Timothy and Emily Mason, drowned July 26, 1873, and that 
of a six-months-old infant of Mr. and Mrs. Mason are also in 
this cemetery. 

The graves are now in the shadow of great evergreen trees 
but the ground is cleared and the place easy of access. 


The story of the permanent settlement of Mount Desert 
Island begins with the coming of Abraham Somes with his 
family to what is now known as Somesville. The following 
letter dated April 20, 1816, will describe his coming in his own 
words : 

To Eben Parsons Esq. of Boston, Mass. 

Dear sir : — I take this opportunity to state to you the facts con- 
cerning my settling on the farm I now live in the town of Mount 
Desert, which were as follows, (viz) sometime before the French 
War was over I received a letter from Sir Francis Bernard in- 
viting me to go to Boston for in it he wanted to see me — ^Accord- 
ingly I went to see him. He asked me if I did not want a farm 
on the island of Mount Desert. I excepted the proposal he 
likewise requested me to settle the land. I accordingly came 
down immediately after the War was over and peace ratified 
between Great Britain and the French and Indians — so that I 
could be safe in moving into the Wilderness ; I came to this 
place which was in the autumn of the year 1761 and made a 
pitch on this lot I now live and in June the year following I 
moved my family and settled on the same lot, and have occupied 
the same ever since without any interruption from any claimant 
whatsoever until of late — 

In the year 1763 or 4 the said Sir Francis came in person 
(who at that time was Governor of the then Colony of Massa- 
chusetts Bay) to this Island and remained here some consider- 
able time, and I attended on him, and piloted him and assisted 
him in making discoveries of Natural privileges, if any there 
might be. At that time he gave me this lot with the privileges 
thereunto belonging, and advised me to build mills and clear up 
my farm, for he said you never shall be interrupted. 

I accordingly proceeded, and have been in peaceable posses- 
sion of the premises for the full term of 52 years without any 

240 Traditions and Records 

difficulty. About two years ago I was sued with a writ of 
ejectment which cause is now pending- before the Supreme 
Judicial Court to be holden at Castine within the County of Han- 
cock on the third Tuesday in June next, and as I had nothing in 
writing from Governor Bernard, but all was verbal I do not 
know but I may be lame in my defence, as the old people which 
were knowing to the agreement between us are dead, so I can- 
not get proof of anything but the length of time I have settled, 
that I have proved. 

Now dear sir, as I am acquainted with you and knowing your 
knowledge in law cases and your integrity and uprightness I 
thus address you, desiring you to examine the records of Gov- 
ernor Bernard's grant for that must be on the records of the 
General Court. And if you will be so kind to me as to obtain 
a copy of said Grant for me, it may be of great use in my cause. 
And all other records as you may think will be useful for me. 

Dear sir, when I was with you we talked this matter over 
and I am indebted to you much for your good attention at that 
time. And if you will do this business for me you shall be paid 
for all your trouble to the utmost farthing. 

And I wish you to send me a letter containing the same with 
your instructions which will be received with gratitude. I wish 
you would answer this letter seasonably so that I can have it to 
assist me at the trial which will take place the third Tuesday in 
June next. 

Now sir, I would inform you that I and my family enjoy our 
health as well as we could expect through divine goodness under 
the infirmity of this advanced age. 

I now conclude with wishing health and prosperity to you 
and yours through the journey of life. 

Abraham Somes 

Moimt Desert 2()th April A.D. 1816 

(This letter folded and sealed in old fashioned way without 

The proof of the long residence of Mr. Somes on the land 
was evidently accepted as he continued to live there and left the 
property to his descendants. 

SoMESVILLi: 241 

At the time Mr. Somes accepted the invitation of Governor 
Bernard to come to see him, he was no stranger to the Maine 
coast and to the vicinity of Mount Desert Island, having made 
several voyages to the place for fish. In another chapter his 
purchase of what is now Greening's Island is described, a trans- 
action which he valued lightly as he threw away the birchbark 
deed and thought no more about it. 

In 1759 family tradition says that he came to Mount Desert 
to cut the hay on the salt marshes and one night he moored his 
boat at the head of the Sound. The next morning was Sunday 
and he rose early and walked out to look over the place. He 
noted the chain of ponds and the brooks and observed that it 
was a good chance to build mills, which were one of the first 
essentials for a new settlement. He also noted the great oak 
trees which then grew all over the tract of land which is now 
Somesville and extended far to the west over what is now called 
Oak Hill. He was a cooper by trade and he recognized the 
value of oak timber for casks and barrels, which was another 
attraction to the place. Little did Abraham Somes realize as he 
walked through the oak forest that calm Sunday morning, that 
many generations of his descendants would occupy the land for 
many years to come. 

Governor Bernard had evidently heard of his acquaintance 
with and interest in Mount Desert ; hence the invitation to come 
and talk the situation over. And so in June of 1762 Abraham 
Somes and his wife, Hannah Herrick Somes, with their four little 
daughters, Hannah, Patty, Lucy and Prudence, came from 
Gloucester, Mass., bringing their household goods with them, 
and made their home in the log cabin which Mr. Somes had 
built the autumn before. Nine more children were born to them 
in their new home and when Mrs. Somes died March 16, 1790, 
the husband carried on the domestic affairs alone until four years 
later when lie married Mrs. Joanna Beal, widow of Edward Beal 
of Union River who died December 17, 1831. Mr. Somes lived to 
be over eighty years of age. 

In the museum at Somesville is a small table, said to have 
been brought by Mr. and Mrs. Somes when they first came to 
Mount Desert. 

242 Teaditions and Records 

Within the year came James Richardson and family from 
Gloucester and settled at the head of the Sound. Here he built 
a mill and carried on lumbering operations in connection with 
his farming and here he raised his family of eleven children, six 
of whom were born after the coming to Mount Desert and 
George, the sixth child, born August 16, 1763, was the first white 
child bom on Mount Desert Island. 

Mr. Richardson was an enterprising, industrious man with 
considerable education for the times. He was first clerk of the 
Plantation and served also as Town Clerk for many years. He 
was first clerk of the Congregational church formed at South- 
west Harbor in 1792 and held that office until his death on 
December 12, 1807. His handwriting in the old books of record 
is clear and plain. His descendants are also numerous on Mount 
Desert Island today. 

His brothers, Thomas and Stephen, settled at Bass Harbor; 
Thomas on the eastern side of the harbor where his descendants 
still own and occupy the land, and Stephen on the western side. 

It seems by the letter written by Abraham Somes and quoted 
at the beginning of this chapter, that Governor Bernard gave 
him his tract of land for the purpose of making a beginning of a 
settlement ; the other settlers were expected to sign an agreement 
that if they discovered "Mines of metal or coal or quarries of 
limestone" such discoveries would be the property of the 

Settlers soon began to come in numbers, taking up lots at 
Hull's Cove, at Pretty Marsh, at Bass Harbor and at Southwest 
Harbor, and the need of some form of government was felt. 
The act for Incorporating the Plantation of Mount Desert 
was passed to be enacted on February 17, 1789. The first 
meeting of the Plantation was held at the home of Stephen 
Richardson at Crockett Point, Bass Harbor, on March 30, 1776. 
Stephen Richardson was the representative of the Plantation in 
the General Court and a member of the first Board of Selectmen 
of Mount Desert. The Town of Mount Desert was organized 
April 6, 1789, and the Town of Eden was set off in 1796. 

In the letter which Abraham Somes wrote to his lawyer in 
Boston regarding his title to the land on which he had lived for 


fifty-two years, he mentions the visit of Governor Bernard to 
Mount Desert and states that he (Somes) went with him and 
assisted him during his stay. Governor Bernard, in the journal 
which he kept on the voyage speaks of going up the Sound and 
says, "We went on shore and into Somes' log house, found it 
neat and convenient, though not quite furnished, and in it a 
notable woman with four pretty girls, clean and orderly. Near 
it were many fish drying there." 

Abraham Somes was prominent in the affairs of the new town 
and held town office, being one of the first Board of Selectmen 
and lieutenant of the militia company. His many descendants 
have always been among the leading people at Somesville and 
still retain their influence in town affairs. His second son John, 
served as representative in the Massachusetts legislature, 1815- 
1818. His grandson, Jacob Somes, was representative and also 
State Senator. His great grandson, John William Somes, also 
served in the State Legislature and many descendants have held 
town office. 

Daniel Somes was the first Custom House officer when that 
service was established at Southwest Harbor and he also kept 
the Mount Desert Tavern where travellers were well cared for. 

This "tavern" was the house now owned by Bishop Manning 
of New York and occupied by him as a summer residence. 

According to the writings of Eben M. Hamor of Town Hill, 
in 1836 there were but nine families living at Somesville 
although it was the most important business place on Mount 
Desert Island. The householders were Dr. Kendall Kittredge, 
Captain Eben E. Babson, David Richardson, Timothy Mason, 
Abraham Somes, Daniel Somes, John Somes, John Somes, Jr. 
and Isaac Somes. 

There was one small store, one blacksmith shop, a shoemak- 
er's shop where a number of men were employed, a carding mill, 
a tan yard, two shipyards, one saw mill, one lath mill, one shin- 
gle mill, one grist mill. The only public building was the 
schoolhouse in which schools and religious meetings as well as 
town or plantation meetings were held. 

The different Somes families owned the mills, ran the black- 
smith and shoemaking shops, kept the store and built vessels. 

244 Traditions and Records 

They worked amiably together and all amassed considerable 
property and had comfortable homes. 

Abraham, John and Daniel were sons of the pioneer Abraham 
and the others were his grandsons. 

Somesville at this time was referred to as Betwixt the Hills, 
though the name of the post-office from the time of its establish- 
ment has been Mount Desert. 


The first settlers at Somesville were among those who on 
October 17, 1792, organized the Congregational Church of Mount 
Desert. James Richardson was the first clerk of the church 
and Somesville men assisted in the building of the church which 
now stands at Manset and they owned pews in it. On Sundays 
some families rode to the services over the road which led over 
Beech Hill and others sailed or rowed their boats down Somes 
Sound. Services were held at times in the schoolhouse and 
travelling ministers came at intervals to preach funeral sermons, 
perform marriage ceremonies and hold meetings. 

It was in Somesville that Lucy Somes, daughter of Lieut. 
Abraham Somes, the pioneer, was published February 18, 1780, 
to Nicholas Thomas of Eden. The young people were impatient 
to be married and begin their new home and no travelling minis- 
ter or circuit preacher was likely to come to the island during 
the winter. 

So Lieut. Somes gathered his relatives and friends together, 
had a wedding feast prepared and announced that "Inasmuch as 
there is no Lawful Authority within thirty miles of this place 
they mutually took each other for husband and wife in the pres- 
ence of God and witnesses." 

The following certificate was issued to them : 

Mount Desert February 22nd 1780 

This is to sartify that inasmuch as there is no Lawful 
Authority within thirty miles of this place whereby we can be 
married as the Law directs, we do, with the consent of our 
parents, and in presence of these witnesses, solemnly promise 
and engage to each other in the following words : — 


I, Nicholas Thomas, do, in the presence of God, Angels and 
these witnesses, take Lucy Somes to be my married wife, to live 
with her, to love, cherish, nourish and maintain her in prosperity 
and adversity, in sickness and health, and to cleave to her as my 
only and lawful wife as long as God shall continue both our 

I, Lucy Somes, do, in the presence of God, Angels and these 
witnesses, take Nicholas Thomas to be my married husband, to 
live with him, to honor and obey him in all things lawful, in 
prosperity and adversity, in sickness and health, and to cleave 
to him as my only and married husband as long as God shall 
continue both our lives. 


Nicholas Thomas 
Lucy Somes 

In presence of these witnesses : — 

James Richardson 
Samuel Reed 
James Richardson, Jr. 
Daniel Richardson 
Abraham Somes 

Attest, Abraham Somes, clerk. 

On January 6, 1795, John Somes and Judith Richardson went 
on horseback to Castine and were married by Paul Dudley Sar- 
gent, Esq., there being no clergyman or justice nearer. Rev. 
Ebenezer Eaton was often at Southwest Harbor to preach but 
he was not an ordained minister and therefore could not perform 
marriage ceremonies. 

Deacon Henry H. Clark of Southwest Harbor used to tell 
often that in 1836 he walked from Southwest Harbor to Castine, 
a distance of more than forty miles, to buy his wedding suit and 
he also walked back home. 

The town of Mount Desert, which included what is now Tre- 
mont and Southwest Harbor, was taxed to support preaching 

246 Traditions and Records 

and there are receipts in existence showing money paid in 1824 
by the town to Elder Eaton for his services as minister. 

After the organization of the Methodist church it is evident 
that Congregationalism languished for a time until some of the 
members of that faith made an efifort to arouse enthusiasm again. 
There is a record book in possession of the Somesville church 
which is "A Record of the Congregational Parish or Religious 
Society in Mount Desert, organized July 2, 1840. Calvin Kitt- 
redge, Clerk. Object : to provide Congregational preaching." 
Among the names of Somesville men are those of John Carroll, 
David King, Benjamin Gilley, Jacob Lurvey and others from 
Southwest Harbor. 

In the course of time the Somesville people wished to have 
a church of their own and took steps to build one. Rev. Samuel 
Bowker, who was then living at Somesville, was one of the prime 
movers in the matter. 

The following is a copy of an undated paper now in the 
possession of Mrs. J. A. Somes of Mount Desert. 

The undersigned being desirous of having a Union Meeting 
house built between the hills in Mt. Desert, agree to take the 
number of pews set to their names, and further agree to pay five 
dollars for each pew as soon as it is ascertained that the house 
will be built. 

And ten dollars more when the house is finished outside, the 
balance as soon as the house is finished and accepted. The 
house to contain not less than forty nor more than fifty-five 
pews, and a gallery across the end for singer's seats, and the cost 
of said house to be not less than fifteen hundred dollars nor more 
than twenty-five hundred. Size, plan, style and finish to be 
agreed upon at the first meeting of the signers. The house to 
be controlled and occupied in proportion to the number of pews 
owned by each society. 

John Somes Benj. F. Leland 

John M. Noyes Isaac Somes 

John Richardson Nathan Salsbury 

A. Somes Jacob Somes 

E. E. Babson N. G. Richardson 

Some;sville 247 

Kendall Kittredge Daniel Somes 

Timothy Mason Edwin Young 

John Gilley John H. Parker 

Lewis Somes Geo. B. Somes 

Wm. T. Mason Sibley P. Richardson 

Benj. Richardson Edward S. Richardson 

William Thompson Sarah Somes 

James R. Freeman Samuel N. Gilpatrick 

B. W. Kittredge B. T. Atherton 

Amos Hooper Benj. Richardson, Jr. 

William Kittredge John Brown 

David Wasgatt, 2nd Thomas Eaton 

Emerson Googing Thomas Knowles 

Benj. Thorn Lewis Freeman 

Samuel Bowker Reuben Freeman 

Isaac Lurvey Thomas Mayo, Jr. 

The church was built in 1852 on land given by John Somes, 
Jr., and the sewing society was organized about that time. This 
society raised money for a bell and Mrs. Rebecca Somes went 
to Boston on a sailing vessel and purchased one which was in- 
stalled in the belfry July 4, 1858, the first church bell to ring 
out its chimes on Mount Desert Island. The society also pur- 
chased a clock. The church has had many gifts. A. C. Femald 
gave the pulpit set and A. J. Whiting presented the carpet. On 
October 20, 1883, Nehemiah Kittredge gave the Somesville 
church and society $5000 in trust, "the interest to be used in de- 
fraying expense of Congregational preaching in Somesville and 
vicinity on condition that the church raise annually an equal 
amount." On December 25, 1884, Mr. Kittredge presented a 
communion set as a Christmas gift to the church. 

It was December 21, 1876, when ten residents of the com- 
munity met at the home of Cyrus J. Hall and organized them- 
selves into a Congregational church, though many were reluctant 
to sever their connection with the First Church at Southwest 
Harbor. The following signed their names to the covenant of 
the Somesville church : Sarah H. Parker, Mary Mason, Obadiah 
Allen, Sophia Allen, Phebe S. Babson, Dr. R. L. Grindle, Flora 
A. Grindle, Sylvina J. Hall, Adelma F. Joy, Cynthia Smith. 

Rev. J. M. H. Dow presided and Rev. A. R. Plummer was 

248 Traditions and Re;cords 

Sometimes one minister has served this church and also the 
one at Southwest Harbor and at other times each church has had 
its resident minister. Of late the Somesville church has joined 
with other parishes in the town in the Mount Desert Larger 
Parish movement. 

Ministers who have served the church are Rev. Plummer, 
A. Redlon, A. N. Jones, J. E. Swallow, H. R. McCartney, E. S. 
Newbert, Wm. H. Thorne, Andrew U. Ogilvie, Franklin A. 
Barker, George E. Kinney. The latter preached from 1899 to 


The first schoolhouse in Somesville was built on the Old 
Road and was used for church services and town meetings. 
Mrs. Adelma F. Joy attended school there in 1847 and described 
it thus : "It was a one story building and on the outside was a 
box with a glass door where important notices such as marriage 
intentions or public meetings were posted. The inside was fin- 
ished in the fashion of the day with a row of large seats along 
the back of the room and grading down to smaller ones. These 
seats were six feet long or more with desks the same length and 
the place for the books was so large that a child could crawl into 
the space. 

The seats for the boys faced those for the girls and there 
was a wide space in the middle. The teacher's desk faced the 
door and there was a large entry which was more like a shed 
as the wood was kept there and there were hooks or nails on 
which we hung our wraps. 

The school was always crowded and often some of the older 
pupils had to take the smaller classes into the entry to hear their 
spelling or reading as the teacher had no assistants. 

The terms of school were short, but sometimes there would 
be a few weeks of private school taught often by some stranger 
who travelled around getting up these schools and teaching them 
for a few weeks. One of these terms was taught by a Mr. 
Chase, who taught nothing but geography at an evening school, 
but also taught a private day school. Another evening school 
was devoted exclusively to the study of grammar." 


When the community decided that the old schoolhouse was 
inadequate for its needs, a new one was built south of the church 
and nearly opposite the Noyes house, now owned and occupied 
by A. C. Fernald. 

This was used until about 1865 or 6 and the building is now 
attached to the middle building of those in the center of the 
village, once used as stores, and is a woodshed and storehouse. 

The next house of learning was built about 1866 on the lot 
which is still used for schools. It ser\'ed the community for 
many years for the education of the children. When the number 
of pupils overflowed the schoolhouse, the town rented the old 
store which was once the property of Isaac Somes and the pri- 
mary grades were taught there for some time. 

The first terms of high school were held in the second floor 
hall of the northernmost building at the village center. 

When the number of pupils in the village were so many that 
a graded system was imperative, the schoolhouse was sold to 
Bloomfield Smith who moved it to the lot just north of the 
school lot and remodeled it as a general store. In 1898 a two- 
story building was erected with the second floor arranged for 
the upper grades, while the primary children were accommodated 
on the first floor. In 1929 a large addition was built to accom- 
modate the high school. 


Ship building was one of the principal industries of the early 
days of Somesville and the fine growth of oak trees in the vicin- 
ity furnished sturdy material for the construction of seaworthy 
hulls that sailed the world over. A. J. Whiting did some build- 
ing of vessels and the Somes yard was the scene of much 

The first vessels built by John and Daniel Somes were The 
Caspian, Two Sisters, Marj^ American, Amethyst, and Rosilla. 
They bought the old packet Midas and sailed her. The John 
Somes was the first vessel built by John William, John Jacob 
and Thaddeus Somes. 

Nathaniel Richardson of Beech Hill built a vessel in Somes- 
ville near the present site of the public library. It was so high 

250 Traditions and Rejcords 

on the stocks that most people feared an accident at launching 
time and a great crowd gathered to see her slide off the ways ; 
but the launching was successful and she slid safely into the 
water. She was named The Siren. 

Timothy Mason, who lived on Mason's Point, built several 
small vessels. One was for Capt. Samuel Spurling of Cranberry 
Isles, who, with a young boy accompanying him, came to make 
a payment on it. The boat in which they came was seen as far 
as Bar Island on its homeward way, then it sank. Men searched 
and dragged the waters, but no trace of boat or bodies was ever 

A broadside was written on this sad event. 

A thirty-ton vessel was built by Hugh Richardson at his 
home on Oak Hill and hauled by oxen to the shipyard near 
where the Denning brook flows into the Sound. It was hauled 
across the Somes Pond on the ice. Timothy Mason was part 
owner of this vessel and helped to build her. This was in 1830. 

Hiram Flye of Seal Cove was also a builder of ships. He 
would never allow his vessels to be named for living persons 
and he always kept the name a secret until the day of the launch- 
ing. It was very exciting, when, at the launching, the bunting 
on which was the name of the craft was hoisted. Mr. Flye built 
the Northern Light, the Light of The East and many others. 

Mary Hadlock Manchester, daughter of Samuel Hadlock and 
wife of John Manchester, 2nd, planted, cultivated, pulled, carded 
and spun into linen cloth, flax grown on her own land and it was 
made into sails for one of the vessels built in the early days at 
Norwood's Cove, Southwest Harbor. 

Thomas Knowles of Town Hill was a ship builder with many 
vessels to his credit. His ship yard was at Clark's Cove on the 
western side of the island. It was there that he built the two 
masted schooner, Katie P. Lunt, of about two hundred tons. 

She was commanded by Capt. Andrew Lopaus and while on 
her way from Savannah to Boston she encountered a hurricane 
and was wrenched and washed to pieces. Capt. Lopaus had with 
him his wife and two small children — a boy of five and a girl of 
two. The little girl was washed out of her mother's arms in a 
terrible sea and the boy met a like fate after Capt. Lopaus had 
been badly injured and stunned. The forecastle was washed 


away so they had no food until some of the crew killed a shark 
after the sea had abated and they ate some of the flesh. They 
were finally rescued by an English brig; the Nellie Ware. The 
vessel was built between 1853 and 1860 and was lost around 
1875 or 6. 

Thomas Knowles also built the brig Matilda for Capt. 
A. K. P. Lunt of Tremont ; the barque Annie Gray for Capt. 
Mark Gray of Bucksport, the schooner Clara Sawyer for Capt. 
Caleb Sawyer, the brig Alma P. sailed by Capt. David Branscom 
of Mount Desert, the schooner E. M. Branscom and a schooner 
for Capt. Thompson at the Narrows. These were all built be- 
tween 1853 and the outbreak of the Civil War. 

The schooner Bloomer which has sailed the waters in this 
vicinity since 1855 and is still sailing (1937) was built by Eben 
Pray at Indian Point as a sloop. She once made a record trip 
from Boston to Somesville. She was remodelled into a two- 
master many years ago, and is now owned and sailed by Capt. 
Harper of Rockland who uses her for the carrying of stone. 

Some of the vessels launched from the Somes yards and that 
of A. J. Whiting include the George B. Somes, J. F. Carver, Ella 
Frances (built for Capt. Samuel Bulger and named for his two 
daughters), John Somes, Adelma (a brig), and the Judith Somes, 
also a brig, Mary F. Cushman, Henry W. Cushman, A. J. Whit- 
ing, Flora Grindle and Ella Eudora. 

Other vessels built at Hull's Cove and other places on Mount 
Desert Island but making Somesville their home port were the 
schooner Kate L. Pray, E. T. Hamor, Alice Leland, Mindaro, 
Valparaiso, Savoy, Betsey, and there were others. 

The older residents told interesting tales of the launching of 
the vessels when a crowd gathered to see the new craft slide 
down the ways. The cove would be filled with spruce trees to 
impede the progress of the hull and prevent it from lodging on 
the opposite bank. Sometimes there would be a dinner and a 
dance to celebrate the event. 

The schooner Polly, built in Amesbury, Mass., in 1805, doing 
business for more than one hundred years and now a museum 
ship in Boston Harbor, was once a familiar sight in Mount 
Desert waters. Capt. D. E. Pray once owned one-eighth of her. 

252 Traditions and Records 


Among the organizations that have been a part of the social 
life of Somesville are the Sons of Temperance, the James M, 
Parker Post G. A. R. which had a large membership from all 
parts of the island and which used to have impressive Memorial 
exercises on Memorial Day with the ceremony of decorating the 
graves of the soldiers in Brookside Cemetery with the school 
children marching with the soldiers to the music of fife and 
drum, and an address at the church with special singing of the 
patriotic hymns and songs of that day. 

The Somesville Dramatic Club was organized by Charles 
Witham and gave its first public performance in 1866, playing 
"Nick of the Woods." The company gave this play more than 
ten times in different places, always to a crowded house. 
Twenty-five actors and twelve musicians were in the cast and 
considerable money was raised for village improvement such as 
a boat landing, sidewalks, etc., besides spending some for scenery 
for the stage. There was excellent talent in Somesville and the 
plays presented by this company were always popular. 

Somesville once had a brass band which disbanded when 
some of the members moved from town. The last time the organ- 
ization played was at the services in Somesville at the time of 
the death of President James A. Garfield. 

The Literary Club has been a factor in the social life of the 
village and is responsible for establishing the museum and col- 
lecting the articles shown there. 

The Club has offered prizes in the schools for different 
projects and has contributed much to the literary and social life 
of the community as well as assisting the charitable institutions. 

The sewing societies have raised money for support of the 
church and care of the cemetery and for the purchase of books 
for the library. 

There was once a flourishing Good Templars Lodge. The 
Sons of Veterans was popular for many years, assisting in the 
observance of Memorial Day and having members from all parts 
of the island. The Women's Relief Corps was organized in 
Somesville and held meetings in the Somes Hall where the S. of 
V. also met. 

Some;svili,i; 253 

In early days the Lyceums were popular and well attended 
and much literary talent was brought out and developed by these 
societies — fore runners of modern clubs and forums. 


At a regular meeting of the lodge on October 8, 1870, E. M. 
Hamor was appointed to write "a full account of the rise and 
progress of the lodge" which he did and his account was com- 
pleted and printed March 6, 1871. He begins as follows: 

"Previous to 1867 the only lodge of Masons on the Island of 
Mount Desert was Tremont Lodge at South West Harbor in the 
town of Tremont, but there were quite a number of Masons 
living in the towns of Eden, Trenton and Mount Desert, some of 
whom were members of Tremont Lodge, but who, on account 
of the distance, could not, without much inconvenience to them- 
selves, attend the meetings of that lodge." 

Mr. Hamor goes on to state that after several preliminary 
meetings held during the fall and winter of 1866-7, eighteen of 
their number petitioned that a lodge be formed in the town of 
Mount Desert. These petitioners were recommended by the 
Tremont Lodge and a dispensation was granted February 14, 
1867. John A. Plummer was appointed to be the first W. Mas- 
ter, M. T. Richardson the first Senior Warden and O. Allen the 
first Junior Warden of the lodge. 

The first meeting was held March 16, 1867 in a hall in the 
upper story of J. W. Somes' store, which the lodge afterward 
rented and furnished and occupied it for many years as a lodge 
room. The first men to be initiated were A. J. Whiting, L. H. 
Somes, J. J. Somes, A. A. K. Richardson and R. L. Somes. 

The history of the lodge from February 14, 1871 to February 
14, 1892, was written by James E. Hamor. He records that the 
matter of forming a Masonic Lodge at Bar Harbor was agitated 
in 1879 as a number of men from that place were members of 
Mount Desert Lodge and found it inconvenient to travel so far 
to the meetings. Accordingly a lodge was formed in Bar Har- 
bor during that year. 

During the period covered by this history the records show 
that many members were lost at sea. 

254 Traditions and Records 

All this time the lodge meetings had been held in a small 
room which was now quite inadequate to the needs of the organi- 
zation and in 1889 it was decided to build a hall. John W. 
Somes donated the site and the hall was built. A carpet was 
donated by A. J. Whiting and a hanging lamp by James Clement. 
The building was dedicated November 11, 1891. That year 
thirty-six new members received the degrees of the order. 

In 1910 James E. Hamor, then eighty-five years of age was 
appointed to bring the history of the lodge to date. He records 
the formation of a lodge at Northeast Harbor June 5, 1903. In 
April of 1923 it was voted to build an addition to the hall which 
was done. On April 1, 1928, this hall with its contents burned 
to the ground. The present hall was built the following 

The Order of the Eastern Star was instituted December 20, 
1894, and constituted September 12, 1895. The first Matron was 
Mrs. Caroline Somes; the first patron, George A. Somes. This 
order holds its meetings in Masonic Hall. Mr. and Mrs. O. C. 
Nutting, members of the order, gave the carpet for the lodge 


There is no record of unfriendly acts from the Indians who 
were at Mount Desert for the whole or a part of the year when 
the first settlers came. Champlain found them friendly and 
when the Jesuit settlement at Femald Point was made the new- 
comers were well treated by the Indians. Though it was an 
Indian who informed the English ship of the Norman settle- 
ment, it was done believing that the white men were all of one 
tribe and therefore "kindly affectioned one to another." 

The Indians were of some assistance to the crew and passen- 
gers of the ill-fated ship Grand Design when she was wrecked 
at Seawall in 1739-40 and it was from them that the fishermen 
from Rockland learned that some white people had spent the 
winter at Mount Desert and this information led to their rescue. 

The militia, which included men from Mount Desert Island 
were called out several times to go to the assistance of the settle- 
ment at Machias where Indians were making trouble. 


The shell heaps at Manchester's Point, Northeast Harbor, at 
Fernald Point and at various places on the western side of 
Mount Desert Island show that Indians frequented the island 
for many years, spending their summers along the shores where 
shell fish were abundant, gathering wild berries and hunting 
game. They told the first white men who came, that they 
brought their sick to the island to gain health, so they recog- 
nized the health-giving qualities of Mount Desert breezes — the 
same that prevail today. 

Bands of the Indians used to come to different parts of the 
island to spend the summers and sell their baskets and Mrs. 
Adelma F. Joy writes thus of the Indians who came to Somes- 
ville in her childhood days : 

"Indians used to come and camp around the ponds for the 
purpose of trapping mink and muskrat. They made baskets too, 
and did beautiful bead work. In 1847 there was a colony of 
Indians camped on what we called The Lily Pond, now called 
Somes Pond. The camps were made of spruce boughs and the 
women told fortunes. One family was named Glassene and their 
son went to the village school. 

The Indian women were often invited to eat at the houses 
where they visited and they never removed their red plaid shawls 
and shiny black beaver hats even when they sat at table. They 
always seemed to be well dressed and never begged for food or 

I think it was the same year (1847) that fifteen or twenty 
Indians from Oldtown camped on the salt water shore opposite 
Parkers. The chief said they had been rehearsing their old cus- 
toms and would like to give an exhibition if a hall could be found 
that was large enough. The woolen factory was not in use at 
that time so it was opened for the purpose. 

The Indians dressed in their war paint and feathers and gave 
their dances with flourishing tomahawks and blood-curdling 
yells. One of the tribe could play the violin with considerable 
skill. He was a handsome young man and it began to be said 
that a white girl, some distance away, was in love with him. 
Some nights he would be absent from the show and when in- 
quiries were made for him the braves would say "He gone hunt- 
ing. He be here tomorrow night." 

256 Traditions and Records 

When the Indians left the place it was said that the white 
girl was missing from her home, but not much was said about 
it in the village as no one was acquainted with her family. 

Years after, some Indians camped at Northeast Harbor and 
one good looking young brave had a wife that was white and a 
very beautiful little half-breed girl. The husband was a musi- 
cian and used to go to Southwest Harbor to play in the band. 
The wife could play the piano. She told someone that her 
grandmother was a white woman but insisted that she, herself, 
was Indian. When asked about her grandmother she would say, 
"Me not know. Me Indian." 


Somesville is the site of the first permanent settlement on 
Mount Desert Island and as such is the point of interest to his- 

A recent writer, describing the village says, "Somesville is 
a sprinkling of Neo-Greek cottages, very Palladian, with a small 
classic church, along a road which wanders beside the fjord-like 
Somes Sound. 

A band of, settlers from Massachusetts, equipped with a Bible 
and a book of Greek architecture had settled there more than 
a hundred years ago." 

Now it is very doubtful if Abraham Somes, the first settler 
and ancestor of all of that name, had ever heard of the Greeks 
and their buildings, when, in 1762 he sailed his little ship up the 
Sound which ever since has borne his name, and built his log 
cabin in the field to the east of the present Somes House and 
near the present boat landing. 

But he and his descendants as well as his Massachusetts 
neighbors who followed him to Mount Desert, kept in mind the 
white houses and elm-shaded streets of the Massachusetts vil- 
lages where they had lived, and they built their homes after the 
fashion of those left behind and painted them white with green 
shutters. All through the days of changing fashions in colors 
of house paint, the people of Somesville have, for the most part 
remained true to their classic style and retained the appearance 
of the true New England village of the older settlements. 

SoM^sviLi.]^ 257 

As for the remembered elms, they were not native to the thin 
acid soil of Mount Desert Island, so the early settlers took the 
best substitute they could find, which was the willow. 

Tradition says that Lewis Somes (first of the name), when at 
Lamoine one day cut a willow stick for a whip. On his return 
home he stuck it into the ground where it grew and flourished 
and most of the Somesville willows came from that tree. 

These trees grew to gigantic size and added much to the 
beauty of the village until a few years ago when all the willows 
on Mount Desert Island were attacked by a parasite or a disease 
which destroyed them. 

Somesville with its excellent water power was for many years 
the most important place on Mount Desert Island. Mr. Eben M. 
Hamor wrote of conditions as he knew them in 1836, saying that 
the village at that time consisted of but nine families, though the 
business industries of the whole Island were carried on there. 
The nine settlers were Dr. Kendal Kittredge, Capt. Eben E. Bab- 
son, David Richardson, Timothy Mason, Abraham Somes, Daniel 
Somes, John Somes, John Somes, Jr., and Isaac Somes. Mr. 
Hamor writes : 

"There were in the place, one small store, one blacksmith 
shop, one shoemaker's shop, one tan-yard, two shipyards, one 
bark mill, one saw mill, one lath mill, one shingle mill, one grist 
mill and one schoolhouse in which schools and meetings were 

Most of the mill business was owned and managed by the 
Somes family. 

Beginning with the history of the houses of Somesville at 
the southern end of the settlement on the road to Southwest 
Harbor: there are several camps and cottages built in recent 
years around the shores of Echo Lake. 

Ernest Richardson has built two on the western side, Rolf 
Motz built a cottage close to the road on the eastern shore which 
he sold in 1935 to Mrs. O. C. Nutting. There are several others 
which have been owned by different people, and Ernest Richard- 
son has a store and some overnight camps built in 1935-6 close 
to the road. E. G. Stanley of Southwest Harbor has two cot- 
tages on the lake shore. There was once a house on the eastern 

258 Traditions and Records 

shore built by a man by the name of Babbage, who came there 
from Rockland. This house was burned. 

The first residence on this road is the house of Alfred Lam- 
pher, built for him in 1923. There are several small houses on 
the right side of the road, owned by people who have been em- 
ployed by Nutting and Richardson in their lumbering operations. 
This firm operated a portable saw mill in this vicinity for a few 

Marcellus Lampher had his house built in 1905 and moved 
into it in November of that year. 

A cleared field on the right hand side of the road just below 
the village, shows where a house once stood, which was moved 
to Mullein Hill and is now the home of Mr. and Mrs. Arthur 
Bunker. Across the road, opposite this lot was a house built by 
John W. Somes and rented to tenants. Later it was moved, re- 
modeled and sold to Mrs. Edith B. Prior and used as a summer 
home. It is now (1938) owned by John Ames of Massachusetts. 

Harry Haynes built his house in 1903 and his widow now 
occupies it. Just north of the Haynes house there was a house 
owned by a Mr. Baker and sometimes rented to different families. 
This has been demolished. 

Across the road was a house owned by John W. Somes which 
was burned some years ago. The old lilac bushes bloom every 
spring and show that a home once stood there. 

Just at the junction of the Pretty Marsh Road with the 
Southwest Harbor highway was a house belonging to a Dr. 
Hutchinson and the corner was known as Hutchinson's Corner. 
The house was part of one of the old Somes houses which was 
taken down to make way for a new one. 

Opposite the Pretty Marsh Road is the Davis garage, which 
was built by John W. Somes as a house for Ezra Richardson. 
Mr. Richardson sold it to John A. Somes, who sold to Mrs. Clark 
Davis. She had the building moved to its present site and made 
into a garage with living rooms on the second floor. 

Masonic Hall is built on the site of a former hall that was 
burned April 1st, 1928, and rebuilt in 1929. 

On the Pretty Marsh Road the first house on the right is 
owned by Lewis Reed. It was once part of a building used as 

Somesville; 259 

a post-office and stood just south of the John A. Somes house. 
It was moved to its present site by Oilman Hodgdon, who lived 
in it for some years, then sold it to Orville Bartlett and Mr. Reed 
bought it in 1927. 

Stearns Harriman built his house in 1927. Orville C. Bart- 
lett's house was built about 1861 by Edward Richardson. It had 
several different owners through the years including Amos 
Hooper, whose daughter, Mrs. John Jacob Somes, sold it to 
Joseph P. Carter in 1884. Mrs. Grace M. Bartlett (Mrs. Orville 
C.) is a daughter of Mr. Carter and now owns and occupies the 

The next residence was built many years ago by A. J. Whit- 
ing and is now owned by Leslie Dwyer. Mr. Whiting also built 
the adjoining houses now owned — one by William Somes and one 
by Alton Brown. This last one was built about 1881. 

The next house now owned by Rolf Motz was built by 
Edward Richardson around 1874. It has been owned by several 
persons. Mr. Motz bought it of Ernest Stanley in 1935. 

Arthur Bunker's house has been mentioned before as having 
been built on the Southwest Harbor road and moved to its pres- 
ent location in 1918. Elton Bunker built his little cottage in 

About 1856 Henry Kenniston began to build a house which 
he sold to Isaac Mason before it was completed. Mr. Mason sold 
to Loren Richardson, who deeded it to his daughter, Mrs. Emma 
Richardson Brown. Since her death it is owned by her sons, 
Julian and Emmons Brown, and is occupied by tenants (1937). 

Fred Hewes owns the house built by Edward P. Somes, who 
had a saw mill for many years at the outlet of Somes Pond. His 
widow sold to Ernest Stanley and he to Mr. Hewes. A man by 
the name of Denning lived many years ago near the outlet of 
Denning's Pond, now called Echo Lake and he operated a saw- 
mill there. 

Fred Gray bought his house of Harry Carter who inherited 
it from Frank Carter. This was in 1917. The house was built 
by A. J. Whiting and many families have occupied it. 

Mr. and Mrs. Herschel Reed moved into their new home 
October 4, 1888. This house was built by Lewis Richardson for 

260 Traditions and Records 

A. J. Whiting who sold to Mr. Reed. The Reeds owned another 
house on their lot to the north, which was built by Benjamin 
Leland for Mr. Whiting and this was taken down a few years 

Harry Gray's house was built by Aaron Bunker for Mr. 
Whiting and it has had several owners. Mr. Gray bought it 
from M. L. Allen and Elrie Holmes. There are a few small 
cottages and camps in this vicinity. 

Going back to the Main Road and going north — the first 
house on the left was built by Burton Fernald in 1936 as his 
residence. The next house was built more than sixty years ago 
(1937) for John Green who travelled over Mount Desert Island 
with a pedler's cart and a store of small wares so difficult to get 
in those days. Mr. Green was a gentleman of the old school and 
was most warmly welcomed in the homes of the island. Many 
persons who can remember back half a century will recall the 
bright tin dippers from Mr. Green's red cart, that gladdened 
the hearts of the children. Mr. Green's heirs sold the house to 
Jason Hill whose daughter, Mrs. Agnes Hill Bridges of Atlantic, 
Mass., now owns it and sometimes visits it in summer. 

Robert Fernald's house was built in 1934. M. L. Allen built 
his house in 1889 and has occupied it ever since. 

A. C. Fernald's house was built between 1836 and 1838 by 
John M. Noyes. Mr. Noyes was a carpenter and cabinet maker 
and much of his fine work may still be seen in the old houses on 
Mount Desert Island. He was born at what is now Stonington, 
Deer Isle, and it is said that early in the 1830's he and John H. 
Parker took their tools in a boat and rowed the thirty miles to 
Somesville where they set up business, and built many houses on 
the island. Mr. Noyes also made furniture and some choice 
pieces are among the household treasures of Mount Desert resi- 
dents. His wife was Emily Somes, daughter of John Somes and 
granddaughter of Abraham, the pioneer. When Mr. Noyes 
moved to Georgetown, Mass., he sold the house to A. J. Whiting 
whose home it was for many years and Mr. Fernald bought it 
from the Whiting estate. 

The Fred Somes house was built by Jacob Somes, who left 
it to his daughter, Mrs. William Fennelly, who conducted it as 

Somdsville; 261 

a hotel under the name of Central House, Then she sold to Mr. 
and Mrs. Lyman Somes whose son, Fred Somes, has greatly im- 
proved and altered it. West of this house is one now owned 
by Dr. and Mrs. Lethiecq of Brewer who use it as a summer 
home. This is the oldest house in the village and was built in 
the early part of the 1800's. During some alterations a board 
was found in the walls on which was written, "This house was 
finished in 1828." 

As houses were often finished room by room in those days it 
is likely that it is much older than this date would imply. It 
still has the immense central chimney of olden time. The house 
was built by Isaac Somes, inherited by his son, Lyman Somes, 
and then by Mr. Somes' daughter, Mrs. Lethiecq. 

Isaac Somes had a fulling and carding mill on the brook not 
far from his house which stood there until 1924 when it was 
taken down. He also had a building on his lot where he carried 
on a general store and later it was used for school purposes. A 
private school was held there and again it was rented by the 
town for the primary grades. It also served Mr. John Green 
as a tin shop. 

The bungalow on the cemetery road was built by Hollis 
Hysom about 1929. 

B. G. Lunt's store was built by A. J. Whiting and there he 
kept a general store for many years. Mr. Whiting was a good 
business man and interested in many enterprises. He built a 
number of houses for rent, he built vessels and he made con- 
siderable money from his stone quarries. 

The next two large buildings are owned by Mrs. J. A. Somes. 
The small shed at the rear of the middle one was the second 
schoolhouse to be built in the village and stood near the site of 
Mrs. Lester Fray's garage just south of the church. 

The lower building had a hall on the second floor and also a 
large room on the third floor. The Masonic lodge used the third 
floor room as their lodge room for many years. On the second 
floor the hall was used for many public affairs ; the Sons of 
Veterans and the Women's Relief Corps met there and the high 
school was held there for ten years or more. The post-ofiice 
occupied space in the middle building for some time. 

262 Traditions and Records 

The tiny building close to the brook has been used as a town 
house, a shoemaker's shop, a private schoolhouse and is one of 
the oldest structures in the village. It is now used as a museum 
under direction of the Women's Club of Somesville. It was re- 
stored and renovated by J. A. Somes and Judge Smith and 
donated for its present use. The door with its massive brass 
lock and key shows workmanship of skill and of great age. The 
millstones near the entrance to the museum came from the grist 
mill which was the property of the Somes family and was on the 
brook back of where the building now stands. The museum 
contains a copy of the Salem Towne map of Mount Desert Island 
made in 1808 and showing the original owners of the land, the 
saddlebags owned and used for a lifetime by Dr. Kendal Kitt- 
redge, the first doctor on the Island, the first bag used to bring 
the mail to the island from Ellsworth, the first communion set 
used in church services, a set of surveyor's instruments used by 
Salem Towne, a plate once owned by Lady Jane Montgomery, 
who eloped from her ancestral home in England with her father's 
gardener, Stephen Richardson, and is the ancestress of the Rich- 
ardson family of Mount Desert, a table brought by the first 
Abraham Somes to his log cabin in 1762, a pitcher once owned 
by Elder Ebenezer Eaton, and many pieces of china, books, 
maps, charts and household articles of interest and value. 

Going back to the Pretty Marsh road and taking the houses 
on the eastern side : the house north of Masonic Hall is now the 
property of the heirs of Mrs. B. H. Kellogg of Brookline, Mass. 
This house was built by Leander Richardson and sold to Her- 
schel Heath who was lost at sea. It was rented for many years 
to Dr. R. L. Grindle and finally sold to Mrs. Kellogg. 

The next house was built by Richard Holmes in 1891 and 
sold to Lyman Somes whose widow now owns and occupies it. 

The next house was built by Cyrus J. Hall about 1875. Mr. 
Hall owned and developed Hall Quarry. It has been owned by 
Leonard Holmes, William B. Ward and Thomas M. Richardson, 
whose heirs now own it. It is occupied by Mr. and Mrs. George 
Chilles — Mrs. Chilles being the daughter of Mr. Richardson. 

Jonathan Hamor built the adjoining house and his daughter, 
Mrs. Eva Hamor Jacobson, inherited it and sold it to Mrs. 

SoMEsviLivE 263 

George Arnold. The present owners are Mr. and Mrs. Raymond 

Toward the shore of Somes Sound are several fine summer 
homes. That of Mrs. Clark Davis was built for her by J. A. 
Somes, the large house belonging to Mr. and Mrs. Russell Wil- 
son of Cincinnati was built in 1931 and the Colonial house be- 
longing to Mr. and Mrs. Barry Smith of New York was built 
in 1934. 

The house adjoining the Jonathan Hamor house was built in 
1889 by Capt. Lester Pray for his brother, John Pray, who was 
lost at sea October 23, 1891. It is now the property of Mrs. 
Lester Pray. 

Mrs. Pray also owns the next house where she lives. This 
house was built by A. J. Whiting who lived there until he pur- 
chased the John M. Noyes house and sold this one to Capt. Pray 
in 1891. 

The church was built in 1852 from one designed by Chris- 
topher Wren. The land on which it stands was given by John 
M. Somes, Jr. 

The house to the north of the church was built by Isaac 
Somes for his daughter Julia (Mrs. Shepherd Thompson). It 
was sold to Obadiah Allen who lived in it for many years and 
it is now owned by Mrs. J. A. Somes. The J. A. Somes house 
was built in 1840 by John Somes, Jr., who inherited the property 
from Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Reed. Mrs. Reed was Hannah, 
eldest daughter of the pioneer Abraham and Hannah Herrick 
Somes and therefore an aunt to John Somes, Jr. He cared for 
Mr. and Mrs. Reed in their old age and inherited their property. 
The Reed house stood on a rising ground toward the east from 
where the J. A. Somes house now stands. Mrs. Adelma F. Joy 
of Northeast Harbor, a member of the Somes family wrote a 
paper for a club meeting about the early days of Somesville say- 
ing: "The Reed house was built on a little steep hill a short 
distance from the salt water shore of what was called Jim's 
Cove. The north side of the house was plastered with white 
plaster the same as the inside. Mrs. Reed was a sister to my 
grandfather and so was an aunt to Uncle John and he and Aunt 
Julia lived with them when they were old and John Somes, Jr., 

264 Traditions and Records 

had the place for their maintenance. Judith was born there and 
also John W. 

A minister, Mr. Bowker, lived in the upper part at one time 
and we went there a great deal then. Mrs. Bowker was a fine 
musician and gave us our first lessons in music. Mr. Bowker, 
I think, started the movement to have a church built in Somes- 
ville. After many years, when the old house had been occupied 
by many different families, it was moved across the ice to Sheep 
Island, by a Wade family and there the remains now rest." The 
island is now owned by Dr. Virginia Sanderson of Ohio. 

Records show that the house was cut in two before being 
moved and half was moved to Hutchinson's Corner (Pretty 
Marsh and Main Road) where it was later torn down. 

Abraham Somes' three oldest sons settled in Somesville and 
also Hannah, the oldest daughter who married Samuel Reed. It 
seems that he divided his land among these four children. The 
Reed place was the one owned later by John William Somes, 
coming to him from his father John, Jr., and to him from his 
aunt, Hannah Somes Reed, 

The oldest son Abraham had the land on the south side of the 
stream, also the place where his father first settled. John had 
the land on the opposite side of the stream and Daniel's joined 
his and he had a brook all to himself. These three brothers 
dammed the brook and built mills. Abraham had the carding 
mill afterwards carried on by his son Isaac with fulling mill, 
dyehouse and later, looms. John had a shingle mill opposite. 
Two flumes side by side carried the water to each mill. Daniel 
had a tannery. His mill was where the brook flows into the 
Cove. At this time the village was called Betwixt The Hills. 

The main road in the early days went west of what is now the 
village, leading off in that direction just south of the Ernest R. 
Kittredge place, past the Arnold cottage, turned south and 
crossed the Oak Hill road to the east of the Knox house, crossed 
the brook below the cemetery and came into the present road 
south of M. L. Allen's house. 

The house on the shore of the Sound, now occupied by Mr. 
and Mrs. O. C. Nutting as a summer home was built in 1929 by 
J. A. Somes whose heirs now own it. This house is on the 
site of the Somes shipyard. 

Somesville; 265 

There was a building almost opposite the Museum where 
several persons had a store at different times. Mrs. Herschel 
Heath lived there and had a store for some years. David Was- 
gatt, Calvin Kittredge and others were in business there at dif- 
ferent times. The building was taken down in 1923. 

An old blacksmith shop stood on the other side of the brook 
from the Museum. This was burned by sparks from a forest 
fire. There was also an old building back of Mrs. Heath's store 
owned by John Somes, Jr., and occupied for many years by 
different tenants. 

The mill pond was for many years a busy place when the 
waters of the brook furnished power for saw mills, grist mill, 
carding and fulling mill, shingle mill, etc. The remains of the 
last old saw mill were burned on July 4, 1934. Since then a new 
dam has been built by labor from the C C C camps and a fishway 

The public library stands on the site where a building owned 
by A. C Fernald and used as an undertaker's shop and for the 
post-ofifice was burned by lightning in 1891 with considerable 
loss in money as well as property. The land is owned by Mrs. 
George A. Somes and is leased to the library association, who 
built the present library in 1895-6. 

A. C. Fernald's store was built by A. J. Whiting who carried 
on business there for many years. It was sold to R. H. B. and 
A. C. Fernald and is now owned by the latter. The hall on the 
second floor was used for public gatherings and the James M. 
Parker Post met there. Plays and dances were held there. 

The old tannery was on or near this site extending over the 
brook. There was also a blacksmith shop near by owned by 
Thaddeus Somes and operated by Pearl Smith for some years. 

The first house on the left side of the Oak Hill road is built on 
the site of one built before 1800 by John Somes, son of Abraham. 
Mrs. Adelma F. Joy, who lived for nearly a century and could 
remember her grandfather, John Somes, wrote thus of the first 
house : 

"The three sons of Abraham Somes each built two-story 
houses exactly alike except for the ells and sheds. John's and 
Daniel's faced the south but Abraham's faced the west, his being 

266 Traditions and Records 

the only one on the old road. (The old road ran to the west of 
what is now the village.) These houses had one very large 
chimney in the middle, three fireplaces on the first floor and two 
on the second floor. The one in the kitchen was very large and 
had swinging cranes with plenty of hooks to hang kettles on. 
A large brick oven at the side had a place underneath to put the 
hot ashes in after heating the oven. The front door opened into 
a small entry as wide as the parlor door but wider the other way. 
The stairs commenced right opposite the door. Three steps up 
onto a small landing was a door into the chimney about 2^ feet 
wide and 4 feet high and on opening it one saw bars of iron 
across the chimney with hooks to hang hams on for smoking. 
The upper hall was the same width as the lower. It had one 
window and a tall chest on legs, which in my grandfather's 
house held grandmother's silk dresses and one cambric dress — 
pale buff with a figure, which she said cost more than the silks. 
These houses were very low posted and had large beams in the 
corners. John's parlor was painted green. There were no man- 
tels over the fireplaces except one narrow one in the kitchen 
so high that it could hardly be reached. There was no plaster 
on the chimney side of the room; they had panelled woodwork 
and except for the parlor and kitchen, they had no paint. Grand- 
father John's kitchen was painted dark red." 

Mrs. Joy writes thus of the garden at the home of John 
Somes : 

"John Somes' garden would properly be called a sunken gar- 
den. On the north side of the garden in front of the house was 
a wall four or five feet high, which walled a driveway. On the 
other three sides was a board fence — no cracks ; the string pieces 
nailed onto wire inside. Nothing could get through. About 
half the orchard was on the inside, the rest outside the garden. 
Around the four sides of the garden were red currant bushes 
and by the well sweep were black currants. A path to the grist 
mill led down by the outside of the board fence, passing between 
two tall poles covered with hop vines. Hop vines also grew on 
the well sweep. Below the garden was the spring which over- 
flowed and made the land swampy for some distance and sweet 
flag grew in abundance until the grandchildren of John probably 
destroyed or ate it as none grows there now." 

Somes villi; 267 

Mrs. Joy could remember walking in the garden with her 
grandmother and seeing the great red peonies and the tiny 
Ladies Delight and of sitting at the table while her grandfather 
asked a lengthy grace. This was about 1838. She remembered 
the big pewter platters on which the meal was served and the 
"pig roaster" with a little door that could be opened to watch 
the process of roasting before the open fire. 

This house was partly destroyed by fire more than seventy 
years ago (1937) and John's son Jacob built the present house. 
It is now owned and occupied by Harry Somes, son of John 
Jacob, who was the son of Jacob. 

The ell of the old house was moved to the western part of the 
lot and Mrs. Adelma F. Joy lived in it for some time. About 
sixty years ago the roof was raised and an addition built and 
it is now owned and occupied by A. C. Fernald, Jr. (third of that 
name). Thus a part of this house is one of the oldest in the 

Harry Somes owns the next house occupied by tenants and 
Chauncey Somes built the next one about 1928 and occupies it. 

Mrs. Fenelon Higgins' house is next and also a bungalow 
owned by George Richardson of New Jersey. The Clifford 
Richardson house is now owned and occupied by Mrs. Forrest 
Dickey, his adopted daughter, and the next one is the property 
of William S. Richardson, who built it and lives there. 

Mrs. George Knox owns the house on the right side of the 
road opposite the building which is built over a spring of water. 

Going north on the Main Road after crossing the brook 
which runs into the mill pond : the first house on the left was 
built by Abraham Somes, son of John Somes and grandson of 
the pioneer, in 1836. 

It was inherited by Abraham's son Thaddeus. He died in 
1913 and the death of his wife occurred a few years later. His 
heirs sold the place to Judge and Mrs. Samuel W. Smith of Cin- 
cinnati, Ohio, who made it their summer home. It is now the 
property of their son, Samuel Watson Smith, 3rd, who spends 
his vacations there. 

There was a building to the north of this house which was 
used many years as a store. Edgar Nash, Samuel Nash and 

268 Traditions and Records 

Bloomfield Smith all kept store there at different times. Mrs. 
Thaddeus Somes had the building remodeled into a house but 
after Judge Smith purchased the property he had the house taken 

Bishop William T. Manning of New York is the owner of 
the house built by Daniel Somes and used as a public house for 
years, known as the Mount Desert House or Mount Desert Tav- 
ern. Here the stages carrying the mail stopped with their pas- 
sengers and here the first summer visitors to the Island made 
their headquarters. Daniel Somes owned a house which stood 
just back of this one, built in the style of the house now owned 
by Dr. and Mrs. Lethiecq. It was used as a parsonage and 
several ministers made it their home. It was taken down and 
some of the lumber used in the house next to it where Mr. and 
Mrs. Parker now live (1937). Mrs. Adelma Joy remembered 
the house and said that the floors were always kept sanded. 

The artist, Frederick Church, discovered the beauty of Mount 
Desert Island some time in the early 1850's and came with a 
party of friends to the Mount Desert Tavern where they stayed 
for some time exploring the Island and becoming acquainted 
with the residents. Before they left they gave a party to which 
the village people were invited and also many in the other 
villages of the Island. A piano was brought from Ellsworth or 
Bangor, probably the first one to be brought to the Island, and 
ice cream made its first appearance at Mount Desert as a part of 
the refreshments. Some of the Somesville people still have the 
invitation cards which were sent out to the guests. 

The party included many people of prominence of New York 
City, twenty-six in all. Mr. Charles Tracy of New York, father 
of Mrs. J. P. Morgan, Sr., whose family accompanied him, kept 
a diary of the events of the excursion and the book is now in 
the Morgan Library in New York. He describes the beauty of 
the Island and the party which they gave. Mr. Church, the art- 
ist, remained after the others had gone, staying in the different 
villages, painting the portraits of many of the residents as well 
as pictures of the scenery. Through his pictures exhibited in 
the large cities, attention began to be directed toward the wild 
beauty of Mount Desert Island. 


Daniel Somes' son, George Lyman Somes, inherited the place 
from his father and sold it to Miss Eliza Craig of Cambridge, 
Mass. She sold to Bishop Manning who spends his summers 
there. He has made many changes and additions and Mrs, 
Manning has a beautiful garden. 

John Parker (Isaac E. Parker) lives in the house built by 
Nathan Salisbury, owned by his son, Roscoe Salisbury, then by 
his daughter, Mrs. Hollis Hysom, who sold it to Mrs. George A. 
Somes, mother of Mrs. Parker. 

Daniel Somes gave the land and built the next house for the 
first Lewis Somes. His son Lewis inherited it and his widow 
now (1937) lives there. The house was built in 1852. 

R. H. B. Fernald built his house in 1900. In 1937 he took 
down the bam and rebuilt it into a garage with living rooms on 
the second floor. 

Mrs. Georgia Somes Smith lives in a house built in 1926-7 to 
replace one burned January 19, 1926. The house that was de- 
stroyed was one of the oldest in the village. A deed in Mrs. 
Smith's possession from Nathan Salisbury to Dr. Harvey F. 
Deming is dated October 27, 1846. It is thought that Mr. Salis- 
bury built the house. Other deeds show that the place was 
owned by David P. Wasgatt of Minnesota, Leonard J. Higgins, 
E. L. M. Allen, Charles W. Pierce, and Mrs. Smith's father, Isaac 
Somes. The present house is on the same cellar as the old one 
and is on the same plan except that it is higher posted. 

The small building on the same lot used as a post-office was 
built by Mr. and Mrs. Smith in 1927. Somesville, or Mount 
Desert, has had but seven different postmasters during its exist- 
ence. John Somes was the first postmaster on the Island and he 
served forty years. Those who have held office since are A. C. 
Fernald, Jonathan Hamor, Mrs. Eva Hamor Jacobson, Georgia 
Somes, H. M. Smith and H. M. Smith, Jr. 

George Somes built the next house and sold to Capt. Samuel 
Nash. His widow sold to Charles Brown whose widow still lives 

Ezra Richardson's house is one of the old homes. Dr. Har- 
vey Deming, Dr. Googins and A. C Fernald, Sr., have lived in it. 
Walter Fernald owned it and sold to Mr. Richardson. Harold 

270 Traditions and Records 

Grindle lives in a house at the rear of this lot which was built 
by A. C. Fernald, Sr., some fifty or more years ago as a shop for 
his undertaking business. 

The Somes House Garage was built as a stable in the days of 
horses and buckboard riding. 

Mrs. Roy Leland owns and occupies the house which was 
built by her husband and Frank Leland built the next one. His 
widow sold it to Mrs. George A. Somes. Frank Caine lives in 
the house built by Benjamin Leland, who sold it to Charles 
Leland and he to Mrs. George A. Somes. It is now the property 
of Mrs. Somes' son, Frank Caine. 

Pearl Smith built the house now owned by his son, Fred 
Smith. Bloomfield Smith's house was built by Timothy Mason, 
inherited by his son William, who sold to Mr. Smith. 

Charles Brown built the next house and sold it to George 
Knox. He sold to Thurlow Hanna who occupies it. Mrs. Wil- 
liam Brown owns and occupies the next one. 

Mrs. William Disston of Philadelphia owns two houses in 
this vicinity. The smaller one was built by Edwin Parker and 
"Brightside", the larger one, has had several owners since it was 
built by the Arnold family of Brookline, Mass. 

Cynthia Clement owns a small house built by Shepard Rich- 
ardson. Hoyt Richards lives in the house which was built by 
Arthur Leland. The Brooking house has recently been pur- 
chased by John Nelson. James W. Tate built the house where 
he lives as did also Eugene Merchant. 

Returning to the Somes House and taking the houses on the 
right side of the road leading north : below the Somes House 
toward the Sound on what is known as Somes Point is the site 
where Abraham Somes, first permanent settler on Mount Desert 
Island, built the log cabin to which he brought his wife and four 
little girls when he came from Gloucester, Mass., to found a new 
home in the Province of Maine in 1762. 

Later he built a substantial frame house on the site of the 
Somes House and a part of that house is embodied in the present 
hotel. Some of the rooms at the back remain almost as they 
were at first. The house was built as a one-story building and 
later the walls were raised. Since then there have been many 


alterations and additions. George A. Somes finally inherited the 
property, developed the hotel business and built the two cottages 
toward the shore. His widow now owns it and conducts the 

The house to the north of the Somes House was built by 
Nathan Salisbury, Jr., for James Branscom, whose granddaugh- 
ter, Mrs. Hollis Higgins, now owns it. 

The first house on the adjoining lot was built about 1861 for 
Mr, and Mrs. Benjamin T. Atherton who lived there many years 
and part of the time conducted it as a hotel. Mr. and Mrs. Ath- 
erton were both school teachers of ability and they taught many 
terms of school in the different villages on Mount Desert Island. 
After their deaths the place was owned by Mr. and Mrs. Perry 
Rich who carried on the hotel business and from their family, 
Mrs. Alfred T. Baker of Princeton, N. J., purchased the prop- 
erty, took down the buildings and built the present cottage there 
as a summer home. 

The first schoolhouse on the present school lot was built 
about 1866. In 1897-8 this building was sold to Bloomfield 
Smith, who moved it to his lot adjoining on the north side and 
uses it as a store. A two-story schoolhouse was built that year. 
This was adequate for educational purposes until 1929 when the 
house was remodeled and enlarged to its present style. 

Dr. Mallory of Boston owns the house built by Henry Somes 
and uses it as a summer residence. Rev. and Mrs. John White- 
man of Greenfield, Mass., bought the Seavey place, took down 
the house, which stood where the tennis court now is (1937) and 
built their cottage near the shore. E. R. Bossange built his 
summer home about 1924. 

The house across the bridge on the shore side was built by 
Miss Mary Lawson, whose brother, Thomas Lawson, used to 
spend some of his summers there. His daughter, Mrs. Marion 
Lord of Boston, inherited the place from her aunt. 

Capt. Eben Babson came to Somes ville in the early 1800's, 
married Judith, daughter of John and Judith Richardson Somes, 
and built a house on the eastern side of the arm of the sea that 
goes up to meet the waters of Kittredge Brook. His son Elliott 
inherited the place and about 1870 he raised the roof of the 

272 Traditions and Re;cords 

house and made other changes. His daughter Judith inherited 
the property from her father and after her death her heirs sold it 
to Mr. and Mrs. Walter Gilpatric of White Plains, New York, 
who later sold to Mr. and Mrs. Clement R. Wainwright of Phila- 
delphia, and they greatly enlarged and altered the house, but 
retained most of the old rooms in their original form. 

Rev. Horace Leavitt, now of Honolulu, Hawaii, owns the next 
bungalow and the adjoining one was built by Dr. Leavitt's 
father. Rev. Horace Leavitt, Sr. The material for the cottage 
was brought from Japan where Dr. Leavitt had lived as a mis- 
sionary for some years. The place is now owned by Mr. and 
Mrs. Walter Gilpatric who retain the Japanese name — Yama 

The next cottage was built by Dr. Mary Leavitt of Boston 
and she sold to Dr. Thomas Chandler whose heirs still spend 
their summers there. 

The first house on the left after crossing the bridge was built 
by Somes Babson and sold to Prof. Haldy Miller Crist of 
Swarthmore, Pa., whose summer home it is. 

James Richardson who came from Gloucester, Mass., to 
Mount Desert soon after the coming of his neighbor, Abraham 
Somes, settled at the head of the Sound and built a mill on the 
brook on his property. His son George, born August 16, 1763, 
was the first white child born on Mount Desert Island of whom 
there is any authentic record. This son lived on his father's 
place, leaving it to his son Sibley and he to his son, Bloomfield 
Richardson, who, after the death of his wife leaving no children, 
gave the property to his nephew, Jones Tracy, for his mainte- 
nance during the remainder of his life. 

James Richardson, the original owner, was a man of some 
education and was prominent in the affairs of the early days, 
serving as plantation clerk, clerk of the church and other public 
capacities. He was the son of Stephen and Jane Montgomery 
Richardson who came from Londonderry, Ireland, to Gloucester, 
Mass., in 1738. James was born about 1730 and was married 
March 19, 1752, at Gloucester by Rev. Benjamin Bradstreet to 
Rachel Gott. He died December 12, 1807, and she died March 
22, 1814. They have many descendants on Mount Desert Island. 

SoMEsviLL^ 273 

David Richardson owned the place where the Bordeaux fam- 
ily now live. He had a small house on the place which was 
inherited by his daughter, who married Benjamin Bordeaux, a 
mariner who came to Mount Desert Island in a vessel from the 
Bay of Chaleur. Mr. Bordeaux built the present house which 
came at his death to his son Charles. Harry, son of Charles, has 
built a small bungalow near by and assists in carrying on the 
farm. Another son. Pearl Bordeaux, carries on a garage on the 
place and lives in a house on the left beyond the bridge which 
spans the deep ravine near the junction of the Northeast and 
Bar Harbor roads. This house was built by William Sargent. 

Walter Blake built his house about forty-five years ago 

There was a house at the head of the Sound, not far from 
the Bordeaux place, which was the home of Capt. George 
Sargent. This house burned and Capt. Sargent had the barn 
remodelled as a residence. Some years later this, also, was 

Dr. Kendal Kittredge came to Mount Desert in 1798 and pur- 
chased a lot of land on which he built a house. The next year 
he came with his family to make his home here. The house was 
burned after a few years and in the early part of the 1800's he 
built another house on the site of the burned one. This de- 
scended to his son William and then to William's son, Ernest R. 
Kittredge, who now (1937) lives there. The creek to the north 
of the place was called The Doctor's Creek and the brook flowing 
into it is Kittredge Brook. Dr. Kittredge was one of the promi- 
nent men in the early days and was clerk of the First Congrega- 
tional church for many years. The saddlebags which he carried 
on horseback in his trips to visit the sick all over Mount Desert 
and frequently to the mainland adjoining, are in the museum at 
Somesville with the crumbling pills and powders which he left in 
the bottles. 

Timothy Mason built the house now owned by Bloomfield 
Smith and later sold it and built one on Mason's Point about 
1857. It was this Timothy Mason who built a vessel in the yard 
of his home when he lived at Oak Hill and hauled it to Somes- 

274 Traditions and Records 

ville with oxen for the launching. The house was inherited by 
his son, Harlan Mason, whose widow sold it to Donald Gilpin 
of Baltimore as a summer home. 

The house owned by the Parker family was built by John H. 
Parker in 1845. Mr. Parker came to Mount Desert from Deer 
Isle with John M. Noyes. After a short time he returned to his 
native town, married Sarah Haskell Powers and brought his 
bride to Somesville. They lived for a few years in the house 
now owned by Bloomfield Smith and then Mr. Parker bought 
Parker Point and built his home there. The house was inherited 
by his son, George Parker, who left it to his son, Fred H. Parker, 
who now lives there. But few changes have ever been made in 
the house — a dormer window added and a few minor alterations. 

Beech Hill settlement was a part of Somesville and in 1836 
there were eleven houses in this order, beginning at the northern 
end of the settlement : Richard Richardson, Stephen Richardson, 
David Seavey, Nathaniel Richardson, Stephen Richardson, 2nd, 
John Richardson, William Atherton, David Wasgatt, Asa Was- 
gatt, John Clark and Reuben Billings. A schoolhouse stood 
near the northern part of the little village and there was a saw 
mill at the outlet of Denning's Pond (Echo Lake). About this 
time the first Methodist church on Mount Desert Island was 
built on "The Common" at the junction of the Pretty Marsh road 
with the one leading over Beech Hill. The history of this 
church is given in the chapter on churches. 

At this time the road to the southern part of the island led 
over Beech Hill, coming into the present road at Norwood's 
Cove, Southwest Harbor near the junction of Femald Road with 
the Main Road. There was a trail for those on foot or horse- 
back along the eastern side of Denning's Pond (Echo Lake) but 
it was not laid out as a road until 1838 and it was built the 
following year. 

Asa Wasgatt of Beech Hill was a local Methodist preacher 
and John Clark was the father of Davis Wasgatt Clark who 
became Bishop of the Methodist church of Ohio. 

Bar Island at the head of Somes Sound was given to Acadia 
National Park in memory of James W. Pryor and John B. Pine 
by Mrs. Pryor and Mrs. Pine. There are about six acres in the 

SoMEsviLi^e 275 

island, which is well wooded and has some of the oldest and 
finest trees to be found in the region. Mr. Pryor and his sister 
bought the island many years ago and built a log house on it. 

Sheep Island at the head of the Sound is now the property of 
Dr. Virginia Sanderson (granddaughter of Thaddeus Somes), 
who has a small cottage on it where she spends her summers. 

This is the history of the houses of Somesville — oldest set- 
tlement on Mount Desert Island. The names of the first four 
generations of early settlers have been carved for many years 
on the stones in beautiful Brookside Cemetery, but perhaps to a 
greater extent than in any of the other villages, their descendants 
live in the houses built by their ancestors and carry on the work 
of the community. 

The brook, on its way to the sea, no longer is hampered by 
mill wheels, the old mill buildings have long since disappeared 
and the industries have changed. 

No longer is Somesville the business center of the Island, 
but it remains as it always has been — the most beautiful and un- 
spoiled of any of the settlements. Many of the old houses con- 
tain fine handwork in their inside finish, and lovely heirlooms of 
rare pieces of furniture, silver and china that have been handed 
down from generation to generation. And the summer homes 
that have been built in Somesville have conformed in most cases 
to the Colonial style of architecture and blend well with the fine 
old places that carry their years with dignity as well as beauty. 

Many of the sons and daughters of Somesville have gone far 
away in pursuit of their chosen occupations, but their home 
town has their love and loyalty and they can say with the poet, 

"Oft I think of the beautiful town 

That is seated by the sea ; 

Often in thought go up and down 

The pleasant streets of that dear old town 

And my youth comes back to me." 


Brookside Cemetery in the village of Somesville is one of the 
most beautiful resting places for the dead to be found anywhere. 

276 Traditions and Records 

The brook on whose banks grow ferns and violets, cat tails and 
sedges, and in August the brilliant cardinal flower in abundance, 
the tall trees which surround it and the graceful curving road 
that leads to it are all lovely to behold. The circular wall of 
granite and cement that protects the trees on the border of the 
brook was built soon after 1890 by A. J. Whiting, who also made 
a generous contribution for the fence and the graceful wrought- 
iron gates which bear the name — Brookside Cemetery — in the 
arch above the entrance. 

A society formed for the purpose keeps the place in perfect 
order, even unoccupied lots being mown and all walks gravelled 
and kept smooth. Nothing unsightly or unkempt mars the quiet 
beauty of the spot, which is surrounded by trees and shrubs and 
thus shut in from the sounds of the world outside. 

The grave of Abraham Somes, first permanent settler of 
Mount Desert Island is near the center of the yard with those 
of his two wives, Hannah Herrick and Joanna Beal. Mr. Somes 
died Sept. 7, 1819, aged 87. Hannah, his wife, died in 1790 and 
Joanna, his second wife, lived until Dec. 7, 1831. Their graves 
are marked by slate stones as are most of the graves of those 
who died in the early days of the settlement. 

Two other graves bear the name of Abraham Somes ; one, the 
son of the pioneer who died July 12, 1845, at the age of 82 and 
whose wife, Rachel Babson, rests by his side, and Abraham, son 
of John and grandson of the pioneer, who died Aug. 25, 1868, 
aged 66. His wife, Adeline Freeman and several children lie 
near his grave. 

The names of three children of John M. and Emily Somes 
Noyes are on one tall stone. 

Here, too, is the last resting place of George W. Thompson, 
1st Lieut. Co. C, 31st Maine Regiment, Veteran Volunteers, killed 
at the battle of Petersburg, July 30, 1864, at the age of twenty- 
seven. The Sons of Veterans Post which was organized some- 
time in the 1880's at Somesville was named for this young man 
whose promising life was so soon ended. The graves of his an- 
cestors — Cornelius Thompson, 1760-1835, and his wife Judith 
who died in 1792 and his second wife Margaret who died in 
1817, are in this yard. 

SoMEsviLivE 277 

John Somes, who died Feb. 9, 1849, aged 81, and his wife, 
Judith Richardson, who died March 25, 1850, at the age of 82, 
rest in a lot near the pioneer's grave. The name of Somes pre- 
dominates in the yard as the place was on Somes land and was 
a family burying ground at first. Nearly half of the stones in 
the yard bear the name of Somes. 

A monument of granite bears the names of Dr. Kendal Kitt- 
redge who died in 1857 and Sarah Whiting, his wife, with their 
children Calvin, William, Jane and James. Dr. Kittredge had a 
tomb built on his land not far from his house and there his chil- 
dren were laid for many years. When the tomb began to 
crumble with age the bodies were removed to the cemetery and 
the monument erected. 

A thin white marble shaft to the right of the entrance bears 
the inscription, "Harvey F. Deming, M.D. A graduate of Cas- 
tleton, Vt. Born in Cornish, N. H." Then follows a verse but 
the old stone is so sunken now that the words are hidden. Dr. 
Deming came to Somesville to practice on Mount Desert Island 
when age and infirmity made it impossible for Dr. Kittredge to 
attend to the calls of the sick over the wide area of his practice. 

Dr. Robert L. Grindle, who practised medicine for many 
years on Mount Desert Island, making his home in Somesville 
and taking part in all good works, lies in the southern part of 
the yard with his wife Flora beside him. 

Mr. and Mrs. Andrew J. Whiting lie here with a tall shaft 
above them. 

The beauty of the place has attracted several families from 
out of town, who have purchased lots in Brookside Cemetery. 
Among them is Henry A. Inman of Atlanta, Georgia, summer 
resident of Southwest Harbor for many years, whose wife, at 
her request, sleeps her last sleep in their lot close by the mur- 
muring brook. 

Capt. Eben Babson and his wife have the thin slate stones 
to mark their graves and their descendants rest near them. 

Other names which are connected with the history and de- 
velopment of the community from early times to the present day 
are Richardson, Mason, Reed, Higgins, Wasgatt, Leland, Ather- 
ton, Parker, Salisbury, Kenniston, Pray, Fennelly, Allen, Gray, 
Haynes, Brown, Hutchinson, Fernald and others. 


The group of five islands lying off the southern shores of 
Mount Desert and originally incorporated with that island in 
1789, separated in 1830 and became a separate municipality. The 
islands are Great Cranberry, Little Cranberry (Islesford), 
Sutton, Bear and Baker. 

On all these islands grow quantities of the small, ruby cran- 
berries, known as "highland" or "upland" cranberries so the 
name of two of them has an obvious origin. 

The first mention of these islands in documentary history is 
their description, though not by name in Cadillac's memoir of 
1692 in which he describes the coasts of Arcadia for King 
Louis XIV. 

He describes the Western Way, the Eastern Way, both to the 
north and the south of East Bunker's Ledge and the channel 
between West Bunker's Ledge and Great Cranberry, giving sail- 
ing directions and depth of water in the various channels leading 
into Southwest Harbor. 

Abram Somes writes of these islands in 1816 as is recorded 
elsewhere in this volume, and Gov. Francis Bernard writes of 
them in his diary which he kept in 1762 when he made a voyage 
from Boston to Mount Desert Island to see what kind of Island 
it was that had been granted him by royal favor. This too, is 
mentioned elsewhere. 

Records of about that time mention Jonathan Bunker and 
Benjamin Bunker living near Deadman's Point on Great Cran- 
berry and Job Stanwood on the lot at Islesford where the 
museum of History now stands. 

Job Stanwood afterward moved to Duck Brook near Bar 
Harbor, but some of his descendants still live on the islands as 
well as descendants of the Bunkers. 

Jonathan (John) Stanley and his wife, Margarita Le Croix 
Stanley, were living on the west shore of Little Cranberry in 
1769. The cellar of their home is just visible, north of the Saw- 

280 Traditions and Records 

telle summer home on "the Head." They had a large family and 
left many descendants. 

William Gilley, who afterwards settled in Norwood's Cove 
on land now owned by the Country Club, was at Cranberry Isles 
as early as 1777. In that year he made a deposition which is 
on record, saying- that he was taken aboard H. M. S. Scar- 
borough, Capt. Mowatt commanding, and asked if he could pilot 
the ship to Gouldsborough where Col. Jones had promised 
Mowatt fifty head of cattle. Gilley said that he was not a pilot 
and could not assume responsibility for taking the ship to 

Mowatt then replied that he had come there to protect the 

people and he did not wish to offend them ; but if they did not 

accede to his wishes he "would burn every house on the island." 

This shows that there were several families living on the 

island in 1777. 

This William Gilley was the first settler in Southwest Harbor 
and his son William, who married Hannah Lurvey, was the first 
settler on Baker's Island in 1806. A son of the Baker's Island 
William was the John Gilley of Sutton Island whose life was 
written by the late President Charles W. Eliot. 

The first mention of Sutton's Island is when Abram Somes 
writes that he and Eben Sutton of Ipswich bought Greening and 
Sutton islands from the Indians and received birch bark deeds 
which they destroyed, not thinking them of any value. Although 
Eben Sutton never lived on his island, at least not long enough 
to have any record made of his residence, his name is attached 
to it. Joseph Lancaster of Sullivan and his wife, Nancy Rich, 
widow of Joseph Moore, and Isaac Richardson, son of James 
Richardson, the first town clerk of Mount Desert, were the first 
settlers on Sutton which was often spoken of as Lancaster's 
Island during their residence there. William Moore also lived 
there and kept sheep on Bear Island, moving later to Bear to 
live. William Moore was the first keeper of Bear Island light- 

The first Stanley settler on Great Cranberry was Thomas 
Stanley, a nephew of Jonathan, the first permanent settler of 
Little Cranberry. Thomas was the son of Sans and Margaret 

Cranberry 281 

Homan Stanley and his mother was the "widow Margaret Stan- 
ley" to whom a deed of one hundred acres of land was given by 
Mme. de Gregoire in 1792. This land was at Fish Point with 
part of Deadman's Point. 

In the old Cadillac-Gregoire grants a large part of Little 
Cranberry was deeded in 1792 as follows : To Samuel Sewall, 
administrator of the estate of John Stanley deceased, 100 acres 
on the western end of the island ; to Jonathan Stanley, son of 
John deceased, 100 acres in middle of the island; to William 
Nickels 100 acres on eastern end, Marsh Head. 

On Great Cranberry Benjamin Spurling received 100 acres on 
northern end, Aaron Bunker 100 acres on southern end and 
"widow Margaret Stanley" as has been noted, approximately 
100 acres. 

Soon after Cadillac's granddaughter, Marie Therese de las 
Mothe Cadillac, known as Mme. de Gregoire, received the grant 
of the eastern half of Mount Desert Island, with adjoining 
islands, from the estate of her grandfather; she sold what had 
not been deeded to squatters to General Henry Jackson, who 
bought the lands for speculation. He soon sold his holdings to 
William Bingham of Philadelphia who thus came into possession 
of the whole of Baker's, Sutton's and Bear Islands, seventy-three 
of the three hundred and seventy-three acres on Little Cranberry 
and more than half of Great Cranberry, as well as most of the 
eastern half of Mount Desert and many thousands of acres on 
the mainland in Washington and Hancock counties. This Bing- 
ham estate is still paying taxes in the town of Cranberry Isles. 

Names prominent on the Cranberry Islands are Gilley, Had- 
lock, Lancaster, Stanley, Bunker, Moore and Spurling. 

The first board of selectmen of Cranberry Isles was composed 
of Samuel Hadlock, Enoch Spurling and Joseph Moore. This 
was in 1830. 

In a paper written by Prof. William O. Sawtelle, the man 
who is responsible for the Islesford Museum and its valuable 
contents, he says : "Something should be said of two men, Enoch 
Spurling, son of Benjamin, the pioneer, and Samuel Hadlock 
who came with his father from Gloucester, Mass., in 1785 and 
settled at Northeast Harbor. The name of Samuel, the elder, 

282 Traditions and Records 

is perpetuated in Upper and Lower Hadlock Ponds where exten- 
sive lumbering operations were carried on, while Hadlock Cove 
on Little Cranberry Island is named for Samuel, Jr., who re- 
moved thither in 1790. 

Spurling's Point, on the northern end of Great Cranberry per- 
petuates the name of Benjamin Spurling. 

Enoch Spurling 

Enoch Spurling was the son of Benjamin and Fanny Guptill 
Spurling. He was a large landowner and held extensive in- 
terests in vessel property, being himself a master mariner, 
making voyages to Europe and to the West Indies. A large part 
of the present Seal Harbor was owned by him and Benjamin 
Spurling as old manuscript maps of Mount Desert will show. 
He was also storekeeper on Great Cranberry Island and some of 
his account books are still in existence. In the 1820's he brought 
to Philadelphia in the brig "Newtor" a considerable number of 
Irish emigrants. His passenger list of this trip is still in exis- 

Many vessels were built in the Mount Desert region by him 
and his associates ; many others were purchased in Massachusetts 
and brought to the Cranberry Isles, where, manned by skippers 
and crews from the town, they did an extensive carrying trade 
years before the Civil War. 

Enoch Spurling was very active in politics and his advice and 
help were often sought by the political leaders in Maine. Nu- 
merous letters from Col. John Black of Ellsworth and others 
show how well known Enoch was. 

It was he who took the census of the town in Jackson's ad- 
ministration when the funds of the United States Bank were 
distributed throughout the country when "Old Hickory" put that 
institution out of business. It was also he who received the 
money, brought down from Bangor by Major Strickland, and 
he kept an account of it which may still be read in documents 
found among his private papers a few years ago. 

Much could be said about Enoch Spurling and a story of his 
life would be almost a history of the Mount Desert region dur- 
ing his active years. There were several brothers of Enoch — 

Cranbe;rry IsivEs 283 

Benjamin, William, Samuel — all of whom were active, capable 
men, all occupied in a seafaring life. Sometimes they met with 
strange and stirring adventure, as for example, when in 1828 
Capt. Samuel, master of the schooner Cashier, gave a pirate ship 
"all that she wanted", thus ridding the seas in the vicinity of 
Trinidad de Cuba of an annoying pestilence. For this brave and 
daring deed he was presented by the citizens of the place with 
a sword and a brace of pistols. When asked upon his return 
home as to how he did it, the only answer that anyone could 
get in regard to the pirates was that he "gave them a little bit of 
hell, Maine style." 

Samuel Hadlock 

As Enoch Spurling was the most prominent man of his time 
on Great Cranberry so was Samuel Hadlock on Little Cranberry. 

An outstanding act of Hadlock took place in 1807 when he, 
in the schooner Ocean of 131 tons, took a cargo of fish, caught 
on the Grand Banks to Oporto, Spain, at a time when, because 
of the Napoleonic Wars, foodstuffs in neutral countries were 
scarce and high. 

Hadlock did not wait to bring his fish home to cure, but split 
and dried them on the rocks at Labrador, cleared for Spain and 
made his port in spite of the English and French warships which 
were on the lookout to stop all American vessels which were 
engaged in the trans-Atlantic carrying trade. 

Hadlock made his way back to Marblehead after selling his 
fish for a good round sum and obtaining a good return freight. 
The Custom House records of the time at Marblehead state that 
he paid duties of over $500 on what he brought back to this 
country in lemons, salt, etc. 

With a portion of the proceeds of this voyage of the Ocean, 
Hadlock built a store at the head of the present coal wharf on 
Little Cranberry. Here he carried on an extensive business, 
sometimes leasing the outfit to Symers and Eaton of Boston, 
who traded extensively in fish. 

Many vessels were built by Hadlock, some of which were 
commanded by his sons. He had five boys and all but one, 
Edward, died or were lost at sea. His oldest son Samuel, master 

284 Traditions and Records 

of the ill-fated Minerva, was lost with all hands "at the ice" 
in 1829. This was the Captain Samuel Hadlock who is the cen- 
tral figure in Rachel Field's book, "God's Pocket" published in 
1934. Elijah, master of the brig Beaver, died on board of yellow 
fever the year before and Epps, master of the schooner Otter, 
was lost with all hands in the West Indies in 1831. His younger 
brother Gilbert was with him at the time. 

In 1848, several years before Samuel, Sr., died, there was 
built on Little Cranberry Island the largest vessel ever con- 
structed in the Mount Desert region ; the schooner Samuel Had- 
lock. This vessel was commanded by Edwin Hadlock, the only 
one of Samuel Hadlock's sons who was not lost or died at sea. 
And Edwin did not much more than escape a similar fate on a 
voyage from Tampico, Mexico, to New York in the spring of 
1849. Space does not permit a recital of this memorable voyage, 
which took almost two months. Baffled by head winds and 
heavy seas, on a meager allowance of bread and water, with the 
men growing weaker and weaker as time went on with hope 
almost gone, Edwin could record in the log, "Still a head wind 
and heavy seas. On allowance of one quart of water and one 
pound of bread per man. And so ends the twenty-four hours 
on allowance and no tobacco. Providence doeth what seemeth 
right in His sight." 

And so we might continue with story after story of the early 
days in the town of Cranberry Isles. A mass of documents 
relating to the town have, after much searching, been brought 
to light and are now carefully preserved in the new fireproof 
building at Islesford. But few people appreciate what it means 
to a community to save and protect such priceless records of a 
time that is past. They are of importance not only to those 
interested in local lore, but they form a no inconsiderable portion 
of original documents intimately related to the early history of 
Maine and of ^he Nation. 

(The above is taken almost literally from records written by 
Prof. William O. Sawtelle.) 

The outer shores of these islands have seen many shipwrecks 
and in 1878 a Life Saving Station was established on Little 
Cranberry Island. Capt. Gilbert Hadlock was the first keeper 

Cranbe;rry Isle;s 285 

and the crew was Samuel Phippen, Tyler Stanley, Epps Stanley, 
Abram Stanley, Albert Gilley, George Henry Femald. 

The wreck of the Don Parsons was quite a remarkable event. 
It was the year when difficulties with miners and operators of 
coal mines had made coal scarce and expensive, and before the 
usual supply of fuel had been brought to Maine coast towns 
the shores were locked in the grip of a very cold winter and the 
harbors frozen. Wood prices were very high and people all 
along the coast were seriously inconvenienced if not actually 
suffering. The morning after the wreck of the Don Parsons, 
the citizens of Islesford found the eastern shore of the island 
three feet deep with coal brought up by the waves that had 
broken the ship in pieces. The news spread, channels were 
chopped through the ice in the harbors and boats came from 
many miles distant to gather some of the precious cargo. It 
was almost like the miracle of the manna. The coal was most 
welcome, but everybody regretted the loss of a noble ship. 

Baker's Island was settled about 1806 by William Gilley and 
his wife, Hannah Lurvey Gilley. William was a son of the 
William who settled at Norwood's Cove ; the first permanent set- 
tler in what is now the town of Southwest Harbor. They took 
possession of the island, built their house and raised a large 
family of children, some of whom made homes for themselves 
on the island, spent their lives there and were buried in the 
little burying ground with their kin. Raising cattle and sheep, 
clearing the forest and fishing kept the family busy, but gave 
them a good living. 

When the lighthouse was built in 1828 William Gilley was 
made its first keeper at a salary of $350 per year, the use of the 
comfortable house built by the government for the use of the 
keeper, and all the sperm oil he could use in his household. There 
is a letter in existence written by a government official some 
years after Mr. Gilley's appointment, calling his attention to the 
quantity of oil used, saying that it was excessive and suggesting 
that he be more economical. 

286 Traditions and Records 

When the Whig party came into power in 1849 a new keeper 
was appointed and Mr. Gilley, who had bought Great Duck 
Island in 1837 with the idea of raising cattle and sheep on a 
large scale, went to that island, built a house and lived there 
almost alone for many years. His wife remained at Baker's or 
lived with some of her children who had homes on Great Cran- 
berry, making occasional visits to her husband on his lonely 
island. Though she lived most of her life on Baker's she had 
never been reconciled to the lonely existence and she requested 
that when her time came to die, she should be laid to rest in the 
family burying ground on her father's farm by the side of her 
parents. This was done according to her wish and her grave 
is in the Lurvey burying ground on what is now the Worcester 
farm. William Gilley's grave is on Great Cranberry. 

Enoch Lurvey, Sr., lived for some years on Great Duck 
Island. Mr. and Mrs. Charles Harding, an estimable couple 
born in England, owned the island and were living there in 1882 
when the house burned one winter night and the family had to 
spend the night in the boathouse until they were rescued the next 

The island has for many years been used for the purpose of 
raising sheep. 

Many ships have been wrecked on the rocky shores and now a 
lighthouse sends its beams across the waters from the outer 
shore and a fog horn sends out its hoarse and warning cry when 
fog or snow obstruct the vision. 

A negro lived for some time on Little Duck, refusing to talk 
or to tell how he came there. It is probably that he was put 
ashore or escaped from a passing ship. He became deranged 
and was taken to an asylum where he died. 

There is a tiny schoolhouse near the lighthouse buildings 
where school was taught when the families of the keepers war- 
ranted it. There is also a cemetery where lie many victims of 
the numerous shipwrecks. 

Little Duck was deeded in 1834 by Mrs. Katharine Van Rens- 
slaer to the National Association of Audobon Societies for the 
protection of wild birds and animals. Thousands of sea gulls 
live there and hatch their young every spring. It is a remark- 

Cranbe;rry IsivEs 287 

able sight to see such numbers of these great birds, which are 
protected by law and who pay little attention to the presence of 
human beings. 

The first mention in local history of the island now called 
Greening's, is in a letter written by Abram Somes of Mount 
Desert to Eben Parsons, Esq., of Boston, Mass., dated April 20, 
1816, and now on file in the Barton Ticknor Collection in the 
Boston Public Library. The following copy was made from a 
copy in the possession of Mrs. John A. Somes, taken from the 
original by Anna E. Somes. 

Sir: I mean now to give you a history of my discovering 
the Island of Mount Desert which took place a short time pre- 
vious to the war with Great Britain and France in this country, 
which took place in the year 1755 at which time the Indians 
were the only owners of the soil. I was in a Jebacco boat and 
one Eben Sutton of Ipswich in another, were in company, and in 
making discovery of the best places to carry on the fishing busi- 
ness steered our course to the Eastward we went into several 
harbors by sounding at length we arrive off Mount Desert we 
concluded to make an attempt to see if there was any suitable 
harbors in said Island and by sounding we run in and anchored 
in the South West harbour now called, soon after we had An- 
chored our boats we were boarded by a number of the Savages 
in their canoes and among them was the Governor of the Island 
who informed us that the Land looking and pointing all around 
was his We conceiving them to be friendly and very peace- 
able began to talk with them about purchasing land of the Gov- 
ernor. I asked the Governor how much (a word here I could 
not decipher — Occopy or Occossy — ) I must give him for that 
Island which is a small island which lay between said harbour 
and the sound; he answered Oh a great deal, one whol gallon. 
Then the said Sutton asked the Chief how much for that island 
pointing to an island laying to the Eastward of the former island 
that I had bargained for the Governor said two quarts. We paid 
them the rum. He took a piece of birch bark and described the 
same to us but we not understanding neither the description nor 
the worth of the islands never attended to the subject not took 

288 Traditions and Records 

care of the birch bark and left them to drink their Occossy(?) 
and to take the good of their bargain. 

A. Somes 

Mount Desert 20th April 1816 

Eben Parsons Esq. 

Had Mr. Somes kept the birch bark deed he would have held 
title to the island as these Indian deeds were accepted by the 
authorities. Eben Sutton gave his name to the island which he 
purchased for two quarts of Occopy though no trace of his occu- 
pation of his property remains. 

The next mention of the island in history is when it was 
deeded to Philip Langley by Maria Therese de Gregoire in pay- 
ment for services to that lady. He could speak both French and 
English and he made two trips on foot to Quebec for Madame de 
Gregoire in the interests of her title to the island of Mount 
Desert and signed many papers as a witness including many of 
the deeds from the lady to the settlers. 

Philip Langley married widow Margaret Welch Moore and 
she, with three of her four sons went to live on the island. After 
her death Philip married Esther Gott on September 18, 1818. 

They had no children and when Philip died in the 1830's, 
Esther's brother Nathaniel and sister Jane came from Gott's 
Island to live with her. Later Jane married James Grennan. 
Esther brought up her orphaned nephew, William Blount Stan- 
ley and left her part of the island to him. James Grennan had 
acquired title to the other half and left it to his two daughters 
by a second marriage. 

There is an open clearing in the thickly wooded part of the 
island which is called The Ballroom and it is where the sailors 
from the Russian warship Cimbria, used to gather for religious 
services and for athletic events and games when the ship was 
lying off the southern shore of the island in the summer of 1875. 

In 1895 J. G. Thorp of Cambridge, Mass., bought land on the 
northern shore of the island and built a cottage and with the 
coming of the summer residents a new chapter of history began. 
Miss Henrietta Gardiner soon after built her cottage which was 

Cranberry Isles 289 

burned a few years ago and has been rebuilt, and later came 
Henry A. Dreer, the Philadelphia seedsman who built a summer 
home and S. W. Colton, also of Philadelphia. Houses have been 
built for different members of these families and now the whole 
island is owned by summer residents. The farmhouse is the 
property of the Thorp heirs. 

The very small island near the head of Southwest Harbor has 
always been claimed by the heirs of James Robinson, as it lies 
off the shore of their property. 

Cranberries and blueberries used to grow there in abundance 
and some use has been made of it as a place to dry fish. In the 
days when cattle were allowed to roam at freedom, they often 
used to stray onto the island at low tide, and being delayed by 
good feeding until the incoming tide had covered the bar, they 
would swim the stretch of water to the shore. It has been a 
favorite place for clambakes among the young people. 


To Prof. William Otis Sawtelle of Haverford, Pa. and Isles- 
ford, belongs the entire credit for the Islesford collection of 
historical documents and articles and for raising the necessary 
funds with which to build the fine fireproof building which 
houses it. 

Not long after Prof. Sawtelle began to come to the island 
for his summer vacation, the idea occurred to him to make a 
collection of historical articles and papers to be found in the 
homes, and such a collection was begun in an empty building on 
the shore. The collection grew as did also the interest of both 
native and summer residents until now the exhibit is priceless 
and the building one of the finest of its kind. 

It is built of granite, brick and cement and is entirely fire- 
proof. The roof is of slate and the men who did the construc- 
tion work were all descendants of the earliest settlers. Ascend- 
ing the flight of steps to the entrance, the door admits one to 
the wide hall, the walls of which are hung with pictures of ships 
and steamboats of the early days. This room is entirely given 
over to transportation. The visitor is directed first to turn to the 
right to the French room as it is with the French occupation of 
the Mount Desert region that history begins. 

290 Traditions and Records 

Here are pictures of kings and queens and statesmen of the 
Old World who were connected with the settlement or the 
attempts to settle, this part of the land. There are maps and 
letters and ancient deeds and there are glass cases containing 
bits of jewelry, silver and precious relics not to be handled. 
An ancient sofa is here and the first piano ever brought to 
Mount Desert Island stands in this room. The fireplace has a 
marble mantel in French style. 

Across the hall is the English room with pictures of men and 
women of Great Britain whose names are forever connected with 
the beginnings of history in this region. Maps and letters, beau- 
tiful paintings of local scenery, a large library of books relating 
to Mount Desert and adjoining islands, cupboards filled with 
papers and documents and furniture attractively arranged, make 
this apartment very homelike and comfortable. The great fire- 
place will take a tremendous log and its warmth and cheer are 
very welcome on a foggy day. 

At the end of the hall is the front door and door frame of the 
famous old Tinker Tavern of Ellsworth. Up a few cement steps 
and the visitor is in the old settlers' room where are collected a 
great number of articles used by those pioneers who first settled 
these rocky islands. Old looms on which the homespun cloth 
was woven, spinning wheels, flax wheels, furniture, a shoe- 
maker's bench, a closet filled with rare pieces of china, much 
of it brought from across the seas, rugs, swords that were 
carried in the different wars, photographs and pictures, samplers 
worked by childish fingers in the long ago, guns, the pewter 
measures used as a standard, more letters and a vast quantity 
of material relating to the genealogy of the island families. 
There are many figureheads of ships and a curious folding lad- 
der, handmade. There are bits of homespun coverlets woven a 
century and more ago. And above all, there is Prof. Sawtelle 
to tell the fascinating story of the history of the Mount Desert 
region from its discovery to the present day. 

The collection is not complete and additions are frequently 
made. Old letters, old Bible records, genealogical material, ship 
models, old tools, are acceptable and when placed in the museum 
are safe from destruction by fire. 

Cranberry Isi.e;s 291 

And the story of these islands is a part and an important part 
of the history of the whole country and therefore interesting 
to all Americans. 


BASS HARBOR HEAD LIGHT.— This light station is 56 
feet above sea level and was built in 1858. There is one keeper. 
A dwelling house, bell tower, engine house and boat house are 
built on the reservation. The keeper at present (1938) is Joseph 

BEAR ISLAND LIGHT STATION.— This lighthouse was 
built in 1839 and last rebuilt in 1889. It has one keeper, who is 
also in charge of Bear Island lighthouse depot at which a great 
number of the buoys located in waters to the eastward of Bear 
Island are landed for repairs, cleaning and painting or to be fitted 
for replacement. This light is operated by acetylene gas. The 
gas is delivered to the station by our lighthouse tenders, com- 
monly called buoy boats, in a compressed form in cylinders and 
the cylinders are installed in the base of the lighthouse tower as 
needed, the gas running to the flasher in the lantern at the top of 
the tower through piping or tubing installed for the purpose. 
The keeper merely lights the light at sunset each night and, 
barring the fact that the burner becomes carbonned up, it oper- 
ates automatically until shut ofif in the morning at sunrise. 

There is a mechanical bell fog signal at this station that is 
operated by weights which are required to be wound up by the 
keeper at intervals. The descent of the weights by gravity when 
the machine is operated starts a fog bell striking machine in 
operation, which, through a cog wheel installed thereon, sounds 
one stroke on the bell every fifteen seconds. Bear Island light is 
99^ feet above the sea level. William Moore was the first 

The government has purchased the steamboat wharf at 
Southwest Harbor and the buoy depot is being transferred to 
that place. 

292 Traditions and Records 

tion was built in 1830 and last rebuilt in 1857. It is on Mount 
Desert Rock 20 miles south of Mount Desert Island and there 
are three keepers stationed there. There are three houses for the 
keepers and their families. The first keeper at Mount Desert 
Rock was Esaias Preble, and his son, William P. Preble, lighted 
the first lamp in the tower. This lamp must have given a feeble 
glow when compared with the lights of today. It was generated 
by a series of eight argand oil lamps. There was no lens in the 
tower, but instead behind each lamp was a metal reflector about 
twenty inches in diameter. The lens was installed in 1855. In 
1888 a thousand pound fog bell was furnished the station only to 
be replaced by a steam fog signal the following year. In 1893 
the old stone dwelling which had been erected 47 years before, 
was removed and a frame house built in its stead. Extensive 
repairs made in this year brought the station buildings to 
approximately their present state as far as outward appearance 
goes. Improvements continued to be made to the illuminating 
apparatus, the next change being to incandescent oil vapor, pro- 
ducing a very powerful light. 

More efficient engines were installed for the operation of the 
fog signals. In 1931-2 a radio-beacon fog warning and bearing 
finding apparatus was installed and began operation February 
1, 1932. Current is generated at the station by the use of the 
Kohler electric-generating plants similiar to those in use in many 
farmhouses in this State. The light is 75 feet above high water, 
of 70,000 candle power and visible 14 miles. 

This light station is fartherest off shore of any light station 
in the First Lighthouse District which embraces the entire coasts 
of Maine and New Hampshire from the head of navigation on 
the St. Croix River to Hampton River, N. H. 

The radio beacon transmits a code signal during the third 
fifteen minutes of each hour in clear weather, day and night, and 
operates continually in foggy weather, or periods of low visi- 
bility, transmitting one minute, remaining silent two, again the 
fourth minute, silent the next two and so on. 

V** "^^^ 



Cranberry Isi^ES 293 

The poet Whittier speaks of Mount Desert Rock in Mogg 
Magone when he writes in describing the Maine coast — 
"And Desert Rock abrupt and bare 
Lifts its gray turrets in the air." 

A lighted whistle buoy has been established in the waters 
between Mount Desert Island and Mount Desert Rock. It is 
moored in 288 feet of water and is of the large sea type. It 
shows a flashing white light visible nine miles and also has a 
hoarse whistle which is plainly heard at Southwest Harbor when 
the wind blows from that direction. This was established in 
1931. Thus does Uncle Sam protect the shipping of the nation. 

was built in 1828 and last rebuilt in 1855. It is a one-man sta- 
tion at which there are quarters for the family of the keeper 
and it has an "lOV" light but no fog signal. It is known as a 
fixed and flashing white light. The fixed light is interrupted by a 
flash of five seconds duration every ninety seconds. The flash is 
of 24,000 candle power while the fixed light is of but 2900. The 
light is 105 feet above sea level, and was lighted for the first 
time on July 31, 1828, by William Gilley, who was the first 

His salary was $350 per year with all the sperm oil necessary 
for use in his household. When this oil was used it was neces- 
sary to have a stove in a chamber below the lantern to keep the 
oil from congealing in cold weather. 

station was built in 1890 and three keepers are stationed there, 
all of whom have quarters for their families. This light is 
known as an "lOV" light; that is, kerosene or mineral oil is 
vaporized under pressure and burned in a gaseous state on a 
mantle in much the same manner as in some of the lamps used 
in rural communities before the extension of electric lines. The 
fog signal is an air Diaphone (a patent apparatus emitting a very 
penetrating sound ending in somewhat of a grunt) which is sup- 
plied with air by air compressors operated by internal combus- 
tion engines driven by fuel distillate, much akin to the fuel oil 
used for home heating. The light is 66^ feet high. 

Sarah C. Kittredge 

294 Traditions and Records 


From Bangor Historical Magazine 1891 

During the Revolutionary War, Joseph Mayo, Jesse Higgins 
and David Higgins moved from Cape Cod to the Island of 
Mount Desert. 

Joseph Mayo settled near Old House Cove on land now 
(1891) occupied by Joseph Richardson. Jesse Higgins settled 
on land now owned and occupied by Mrs. C. Allen and Nathaniel 

These men all raised large families and although they did not 
settle on Town Hill themselves, their sons and daughters did as 
shown below. 

In about 1790 Gideon Mayo married Esther Hadley and set- 
tled on the south side of Clark's Cove where Jesse H. Mayo now 
lives. Prince Mayo married Priscilla Higgins in 1803 and set- 
tled on land now owned by Frank C. Wiggin. 

In 1806 Thomas Mayo married Dezin Knowles and settled 
on the same lot that Prince Mayo occupied. James Mayo mar- 
ried Sarah Richardson in 1809 and settled on land now owned by 
O. B. Knowles. In 1810 Ephraim Higgins married Phebe At- 
wood and settled on the lot now owned by T. B. Knowles and 
others. David Higgins, in 1812 married Eleanor Wasgatt and 
settled on lot No. 2 of the town land. 

In 1816 Joseph Higgins married Betsey Hamor and settled 
on lot No. 5 near where E. B. Higgins now lives. He after- 
wards purchased lot No. 6. In 1817 Samuel Higgins married 
Lavina Snow and settled on lot No. 1 of said town land. In 
1815 Ephraim Higgins sold out to James and William Hamor 
and the next year moved to the town of Fairfield, Kennebec 
County. About the same time Prince Mayo sold out to Thomas 
Mayo and moved to Pittsfield in the same county. With these 
two exceptions I believe, the original settlers spent their lives 
and died where they first settled. 

In 1817 Wm. Hamor married Experience Mayo and settled 
on the Ephraim Higgins place. After this, a few years, James 

Cranberry Islks 295 

Hamor sold his part of all the land he owned on Town Hill to 
Thomas Knowles. These were the first settlers of Town Hill, a 
hardy, resolute set of men and women, who went into the wilder- 
ness, built themselves homes, working and faring hard for the 
benefit of their posterity as well as themselves. 

T. H. in Bar Harbor Record, 1888-9. 

Town Hill received its name from a tract of land consisting 
of 450 acres claimed by the town of Mount Desert when the 
whole Island was included in one town. It came into possession 
of Eden when that town was set off from Mount Desert and in- 
corporated as a town. The proceeds from the sale of this land 
were to be a fund and the interest used "for support of the gospel 
and schools." 


Hall Quarry is situated on the western shore of Somes Sound 
between Somesville and Southwest Harbor. These quarries be- 
gan operation in 1870 under Cyrus J. Hall of Belfast who carried 
on the granite business the remainder of his life. He is credited 
with inventing the stone-cutting saw and the remains of the first 
one may still be seen. Unfortunately this saw was not a com- 
mercial success as it used an expensive abrasive and present day 
saws use something less costly. 

The texture of Mount Desert granite is very fine and it takes 
a high and lasting polish. Many well known buildings have 
been constructed with this stone, a few of which are : the Bank 
of Commerce at St. Louis, the Omaha Court House, the piers 
and approaches to Manhattan Bridge, the lower part of the 
Philadelphia Custom House, the United States Mint at Phila- 
delphia, including the stone lions which guard the entrance, 
and a number of the government buildings at Washington, D. C. 
Some of this granite has also been used in the building at the 
Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York. 

It is said that in the early days of the operation of the Quar- 
ries, before their product had become well known, two young 

296 Traditions and Records 

Philadelphia contractors were studying plans for a building in 
their city whose specifications called for "Somes Sound granite." 
The young men, never having heard of Somes Sound, concluded 
that it meant "some sound granite" and although somewhat puz- 
zled by the expression, made their bids accordingly, only to learn 
their mistake after their bid had been accepted at a much lower 
figure than other bidders who understood the meaning of the 

At the present time the quarries are not in operation but in 
the decade between 1880 and 1890 nearly 800 men were employed 
there and the little settlement was a busy place. The use of 
cement came into common practice and now the great derricks 
are idle except as small contracts for stone come in from time 
to time. 


It has been forgotten by many that the whole country con- 
tributed to the fund for the purchase of Mount Vernon, the home 
of George Washington, as a national shrine and that the people 
of Mount Desert Island did their part. 

Miss Ann Pamela Cunningham of Philadelphia was National 
Regent of the Association and Mrs. Abba Isabelle Little of Port- 
land was Regent for Maine. Mrs. Charles Jarvis of Ellsworth 
had charge of the work for Hancock County and when illness 
in her family made it impossible for her to carry out her plans, 
Mr. Jarvis took it up and collected the funds for her. 

The scheme for purchasing Mount Vernon originated with a 
patriotic woman of Virginia, who organized the Mount Vernon 
Ladies' Association. On April 6, 1858, a contract was signed 
between John A. Washington, proprietor of Mount Vernon, and 
the Regent of the Association, by which the Mansion and Tomb 
of Washington and 200 acres of land were to become the prop- 
erty of the nation. 

The title was to be held by the Association and the property 
transferred on the payment of $200,000. All interest on said 
sum to be remitted should the whole amount be paid on the 22nd 
of February, 1859, the anniversary of the birth of the Father 

Cranberry IsIve;s 297 

of his Country. The property had been allowed to fall into 
decay and the additional sum of $300,000 was necessary for re- 
pairs, improvements and preservation of the estate. The hero- 
ism of that band of women in assuming such a responsibility as 
the collecting of such a sum of money, is worthy of great admi- 
ration. The nation owes them a debt of gratitude for preserv- 
ing to posterity such a patriotic shrine. Branches were formed 
in all the States of the Union and money collected from all parts 
of the country until the necessary sum had been obtained and 
paid and Mount Vernon was the property of the Nation. The 
towns in Hancock County subscribed as follows: 

Trenton, pop. 1205, sub. $68.10 
Otis, pop. 124, sub. $6.60 
Tremont, pop. 1425, sub. $59.30 
Cranberry Isles, pop. 283, sub. $11.00 
Surry, pop. 1189, sub. $46.05 
Ellsworth, pop. 4009, sub. $150.00 
Total, $341.05 

Other subscriptions not credited, swelled the fund to $389.20, 
which was the sum donated by Hancock County toward the pur- 
chase of Washington's home at Mount Vernon. Following are 
the names of the subscribers from the western section of Mount 
Desert Island: 

Mrs. Nancy C. Cousins, Mrs. Harriet M. Benson, Miss Irene 
B. Cousins, Miss Henrietta L. Tinker, Mrs. Joan H. Lurvey, 
Mary A. Newbury, Mrs. Rachel C. Allen, Levi B. Wyman, Mrs. 
Rachel Carroll, Miss Marion Wyman, Mrs. Abigail Gilley, Miss 
Ann Maria Thurston, Mrs. Mary M. Higgins, Miss Susan Gott, 
Mrs. Betsey B. Tucker, Mrs. Lewis Freeman, Mrs. Hannah C. 
Durgain, Colin McRea, Mrs. Mary A. Clark, Miss Lillian Dur- 
gain, J. Lewis Martin, Mrs. Mary Hodgkins, Miss Freelove M. 
Martin, Mrs. Lydia Newman, Miss L. Rosetta Martin, Mrs, 
Catharine Newman, Mrs. Amos Eaton, Mrs. Dolly Newman, 
William G. Mitchell, Mrs. Hannah C. Haynes, Rhoda R. Rich, 
Mrs. Emma King, Isiphena M. Holden, Mrs. Abraham Richard- 
son, Members of Tremont Lodge F. and A. M., Mrs. Frances 
Mullen, Mrs. A. K. P. Lunt, Moses Richardson, B. B. Reed, 
James Newbury, S. Webster, James Crockett, C. Robbins, John 

298 Traditions and Records 

T. Crockett, J. R. Lunt, Miss Ada J. Crockett, Miss Hannah 
Lopaus, Angus MacDonald, Miss Phebe C. Lopaus, Amanda B. 
Tinker, Miss Mary Jane Heath, Mrs. Joseph B. Rummill, Miss 
Mary Murphy, Mrs. Stephen Billings, Mrs. Alfred Harper, 
Joshua Sawyer, Caleb H. Sawyer, J. B. Walls, Miss Angle S. 
Ober, Mrs. Rachel A. Fuller, Mrs. William Heath, Master Lewis 
F. Sawyer. 

The women who acted as collectors in Tremont, which then 
included Southwest Harbor, were Mrs. Cousins, Mrs. Durgain, 
Mrs. Holden, Mrs. Lunt and Miss Heath. 

It gives us an added interest in Mt. Vernon to know that this 
small section of our great country gave a bit to make possible its 
purchase and preservation. 




WERE BEFORE THEE." Deut 4: 32 

300 Traditions and Records 


The following poem was published in the Mount Desert 
Herald in 1882. It deals with the generation-old argument as 
to whether the accent is placed on the first or the last syllable of 
the second word in the name of the Island. 

A terrible row 

Is started just now, 

Which shows William Shakespeare quite lame is, 

In trying to show 

(Though better we know) 

That nothing at all in a name is. 

The trouble is this : 

An aesthetic miss 

(She is reckoned somewhere in the thirties) 

Who has been there, 'tis guessed, 

Does loudly protest 

That the name of the place Mount Desert is. 

"Not so", says a chap. 

Giving table a rap ; 

His feelings are badly, he says, hurt. 

And outraged his ears. 

Except when he hears 

The proper pronouncing Mount Desert. 

"You're wrong", says a Third ; 

"Yes, both on my word ; 

The name from the French, I declare is. 

And therefore", says he, 

" 'Tis as plain as can be 

The correct way to speak it Dazair is. 

Song and Story 301 

"Och, whilst now", says Pat 

"Phut wud yez be at? 

It's mesilf shure, I think that worst is hurt ; 

Me cousin's been there 

And, faith, I can shwear 

She towld me the name was Mount Dissert." 


Seawall, at the southwestern point of Mount Desert Island, 
is a place visited every summer by thousands of tourists as the 
full beauty and power of the ocean can be seen on the rocks and 
ledges on which the foam-crested waves break, even in the days 
of greatest calm. Perhaps no chapter in the history of Mount 
Desert Island has more of tragedy than that of the wreck of the 
ship Grand Design on the Seawall shore in October of the year 

The Grand Design was a ship of two or three hundred tons, 
which sailed in the spring of that year from Londonderry, Ire- 
land, with about two hundred passengers on board who were 
people of wealth and position, many of whom had with them 
their bond servants. They were bound for Philadelphia to join 
friends and relatives who had written glowing accounts of the 
New World and the opportunities to be found there. The cargo 
was of costly cloth and furnishings in addition to the effects of 
the passengers, many of whom had with them fine furniture and 
household treasures. 

Among the passengers were two young couples from the 
north of Ireland; Jack and Isabel Asbell Galloway and David 
and Mary Scherer. The Galloways had with them their infant 
son. From these two women the story of the wreck has come 
down through their descendants. 

According to the recollections of these unfortunate young 
women, the voyage began auspiciously with pleasant weather 
and high hopes for the future. The two couples had been 
friends from childhood and the women were less than twenty 
years old and the husbands but a few years older. 

302 Traditions and Records 

Their birthplace was near the Giant's Causeway in northern 
Ireland and the Asbells were descendants of the Scotch Presby- 
terian settlers. The child of the Galloways was named Robert, 
for his father's brother who had been impressed in the English 
navy at an early age and from which he had escaped and fled 
to America where he had prospered. He had written to his 
brother Jack, urging him to come to Philadelphia and make his 
fortune in the New World. Accordingly the young couple and 
their friends, the Scherers, had taken passage in the Grand 
Design and sailed in June from Londonderry. 

Tales of the happy days on shipboard at the first of the voy- 
age were told in after years by the two survivors; stories of 
games, singing and anticipation of life in the new land that 
made the days pass swiftly. 

But as the time passed, storms and adverse winds came up 
and after some weeks, the captain was forced to admit that he 
had lost his reckoning and knew not where they were heading. 
He knew that they must be far off their course and when the 
worst storm they had yet encountered broke in fury, the hatches 
were battened down and the terrified passengers huddled together 
in misery, awaiting the end. Amid the turmoil of the raging 
storm they lifted their voices in a hymn and sang : 

"O God, our help in ages past 

Our hope for years to come, 
Our shelter in the stormy blast. 

And our eternal home." 

In the crash of the storm, the raging of winds and waters, 
the Grand Design struck on the rockbound shores of the south- 
ern part of Mount Desert Island near what is now known as 
Ship Harbor and Wonderland. The crew and passengers took 
to the boats and managed to get to the land, but found it indeed 
"a stern and rockbound coast." The next morning showed them 
a scene of wondrous beauty of mountain and sea, but their ship 
was a wreck and they were alone on a desolate coast with the 
chill of winter upon them. 

It seems that all the ship's company of more than two hun- 
dred souls was saved from the sea and cast on the rough and 

Song and Story 303 

rocky shores of what is now called Seawall. They had but a 
small store of food, several of their party were women, they 
knew not the length of the cold season and they were not pre- 
pared for extreme cold weather. One has but to look at the 
shores on this part of Mount Desert Island to appreciate the 
desolation of their situation to which the approaching winter 
added its terrors. 

As soon as the storm abated the men set themselves to salv- 
age everything possible from the wrecked ship and to build a 
shelter. The second morning they counselled together and set 
their bond servants free that all might have equal opportunity. 
They explored their surroundings and found that they were on 
an island which was connected with the mainland by a bar which 
could be passed at low tide. They also made sure that there 
was no settlement near them and no sign of any occupation by 
civilized folk. They made their camps as warm as possible, 
doled out small portions of their food and eked out the supply 
with clams and fish. 

As they knew it would be impossible to spend the winter in 
this desolate place with their scanty food supply, a hundred of 
the young, unmarried men volunteered to start out to find a 
settlement and bring help. So, with the Captain as leader they 
started out and the brave little band was never heard of again. 
Their fate can only be a matter of conjecture. Those left behind 
occupied themselves in strengthening their camps, covering them 
with the canvas of the ship's sails. They investigated the ship's 
stores which they had saved and found plenty of blankets and 
clothing which they divided equally. They explored the vicinity 
and placed a flag made of a red flannel petticoat on the highest 
cliff hoping that it might attract the attention of some passing 
ship. But alas, the European fishing vessels that came to the 
New England shores in summer had all returned across the sea 
with their fare and there was small chance of any craft sailing 
in winter along those bleak and inhospitable shores. 

They built ovens of stones for cooking and to heat the cabins, 
using flat stones for the purpose. Tradition relates one small 
experience: David and Mary had opened a keg of bacon and 
were cooking some slices on a large flat rock which David had 
placed on the red-hot coals when the rock exploded, scattering 

304 Traditions and Records 

the fragments in all directions, though, luckily, no one was hurt. 
They laughingly recalled that the same thing had happened be- 
fore in their childhood days when they were cooking a picnic 
supper near the Giant's Causeway "under the Giant's bridge" in 
northern Ireland. Both women in after years told the incident 
to their grandchildren. 

Winter came on, bitter with storms of sleet and snow, the ice 
sheeted the shores and made it impossible to dig the clams that 
had made a large part of their food since their landing. Heavy 
snows came and drifted deep in the woods surrounding them. 
In her old age Isabel Galloway used to relate these events over 
and over again. She told of the religious services which the 
little band held together, and of the beauty of the scene after a 
snowstorm which, even in their dire extremity, made an impres- 
sion. In February came a thaw and hope raised itself in their 
breasts as they supposed the summer was near. But the hope 
died when the bitter cold once more settled down upon them. 

The members of the little company began to succumb from 
scanty and unaccustomed food, cold and exhaustion and were 
buried near the cabins. One and then another passed. During 
the warm wave a few Indians had visited them and exchanged 
dried venison for cloth. The Indians were friendly but knew 
no English so they could get no information from them. 

The two young husbands had denied themselves food to give 
an extra amount to their wives and they grew weaker. Jack 
gave a whole web of fine Irish linen to an Indian for one wild 
duck which he insisted that his wife, who was nursing her baby, 
should eat. 

One morning Jack did not awake and David soon followed, 
so soon that the young wives, tearless in their terrible grief, 
prepared with their own hands one grave where they laid them 
to rest. The faithful dog which the Galloways had brought 
with them from their old home, was found dead on the grave 
the next morning. To add to their misery, the Indians had 
stolen their tools and implements and they were forced to use 
their hands for digging the clams on which they subsisted from 
the frozen sands. 

In March more Indians came and among them was one who 
spoke some English. He offered to take a letter to the settle- 

Song and Story 305 

ment which he said was "far up the coast." So a letter was 
written telling of their plight and asking that help be sent them. 
Isabel Galloway, telling her story over and over in the chimney 
corner in her old age, would say that at this time her child 
"nursed blood instead of milk" but the little one throve in spite 
of the hardships. In the "Annals of Warren" by Cyrus Eaton, 
speaking of the early settlement of Warren and vicinity it says : 
"About this time (1740) letters were brought by the Indians 
from some shipwrecked persons on Mount Desert Island, who 
were suffering every extremity and dying of hunger. The 
Indians had given them what little aid they could and now came 
with letters to this settlement and that at Damariscotta for fur- 
ther assistance. Measures were immediately concerted by the 
people of those two places and a vessel with provisions des- 
patched to their relief. 

They proved to be passengers from the north of Ireland, who 
had embarked in the ship Grand Design of two or three hundred 
tons, bound to Pennsylvania, which was driven ashore and 
wrecked in a violent storm." Then follows a description of the 
sufferings of the survivors and continues : "The vessel that 
came to their relief brought some provisions, but, as she was 
sometime detained, they arrived at St. George's in a famishing 
condition. Going on shore at Pleasant Point where there was 
then only one log house, they were received with all the hos- 
pitality the place could afford. Many of them were richly clad 
with the remnants of their wardrobes and the fine cloth that had 
escaped the wreck ; but now, in the extremity of their hunger 
they were ready to snatch half-roasted potatoes from the ashes 
into lawn aprons and silk dresses and devour them without plate, 
knife or fork. Mrs. Galloway imagined before landing, because 
being burdened with a child that no one would be willing to 
receive her ; but here she found herself provided with a bed 
whilst the rest were glad to sleep on the floor and in hovels as 
they could. Before landing she had inquired what kind of 
people had settled here and hearing they were Irish exclaimed, 
"Alas, I shan't be able to speak to them for I don't know a word 
of the Irish language." She was now rejoiced to find the inhabi- 
tants as ignorant of that language as herself, being all from the 
north of Ireland and of Scottish descent. 

306 Traditions and Re^cords 

The rescued women had suffered such privations and agonies 
that their rescuers thought them advanced in years and were 
greatly astonished to find that, after a few weeks of good food 
and rest, instead of being old and decrepit as they supposed, the 
women were "young and comely." It must be remembered that 
the two women whose histories have been preserved, Isabel 
Galloway and Mary Scherer, were less than twenty years of age. 
The "Annals of Warren" goes on to say : "Sixteen of these 
persons went to the settlement up the river, the rest to Pemaquid, 
Sheepscot and Damariscotta." 

The news of the shipwreck spread among the settlements and 
many came to offer aid from their own scanty stores. "Young 
and comely" women were rare in this new land at that time and 
many of the young settlers were unmarried men who were look- 
ing for a helpmate. There was little room in the humble homes 
of those days for a superfluous person and when two young men, 
Archibald Gamble and a youth by the name of McCarter offered 
themselves in marriage to Isabel and Mary respectively, their 
offers were accepted and the young women remained in the settle- 
ment. Indeed, they could do nothing else as they had lost all 
in the shipwreck, Isabel was an orphan with no relatives and 
Mary's people were in faraway Ireland with communication diffi- 
cult. The "Annals" records that "their sufferings had bound 
them together in the closest ties of friendship and they were 
ever after extremely affectionate and intimate, more so than any 
two sisters ; and though they could never meet without embrac- 
ing and weeping, it was always a day of rejoicing when either 
of them came to visit the other." 

The child of Mrs. Galloway was sent for later by his uncle 
in Philadelphia, who, when he had heard the story of events, 
took offense at the mother for marrying again so soon, but she 
declined the offer of a home for her boy until he should grow up 
and decide for himself. He was afterwards lost at sea. 

From one of these women are descended the Coombses and 
the Creightons in Thomaston and the Bucklins in Warren ; and 
from the other the McCarters in Gushing. Both women had 
large families of children and the descendants of Mrs. Gamble 
have been traced and recorded in a book called the Genealogy of 
the Gamble Family or The Mount Desert Widow by Greenleaf 
and Jonathan P. Cilley. 

Song and Story 307 

Mrs. Gamble seemed bom for a life of extraordinary adven- 
ture. Her second husband, Archibald Gamble, was of good fam- 
ily, born in the north of Ireland in Derry County. He started 
with his brothers Thomas and William and his sister Mary for 
America, but on the point of sailing he was impressed into the 
British service with his brother Thomas. He finally escaped 
from this enforced servitude and came to Virginia, thence to 
Londonderry, N. H., thence to Pemaquid and in 1736 removed to 
Upper St. George's, now Warren, Maine, and located on Lot 40 
near his sister, Mary Gamble Starrett. Here he cleared a piece 
of ground, planted his potato patch which he fertilized with sea- 
weed, and built his log house. By industry and economy he 
added to his possessions and became one of the prominent citi- 
zens of the settlement. He married Mrs. Galloway in 1742 or 43. 

About 1757 Mrs. Gamble started as a passenger in a sloop 
commanded by Capt. John Watson, to make a visit to New 
Hampshire, probably to her husband's relatives. 

They anchored near Pleasant Point and the captain sent two 
men ashore for water. They were seized by Indians concealed 
there and held as prisoners. The captain, not suspecting this, 
went in his wherry to look for them when they did not return 
to the ship. He was ordered by the Indians to come ashore and 
when he did not comply he was instantly killed by a musket ball. 
The only persons now left on board were Mrs. Gamble and an 
old man. When night approached the Indians attempted to 
board the sloop, but the old man took his station on deck with 
what muskets there were on board and with the aid of Mrs. 
Gamble, who loaded them as fast as he discharged them, kept the 
Indians at bay until they finally withdrew and help came to them 
from the settlement. 

Archibald Gamble, after a life of many adventures with the 
Indians, met his death in sight of his home in the winter of 1779, 
while hauling hay across the Georges River. He and his team 
broke through the ice, and, chilled and suffocated by the winter 
water, died a short time after his rescue. A large rock in the 
river marks the place of this occurrence. 

In the year 1909 some workmen were digging in a place near 
what was said to be the site of the first log church built in the 
town of Warren, Maine, and they unearthed some stone slabs 

308 Traditions and Records 

from a depth of several feet, which were rudely inscribed with 
the names of several of the pioneers of the settlement. Among 
these were the names of Archibald and Isabel Gamble and John 
and Mary McCarter. Descendants of these families purchased 
the plot and erected suitable memorials. 

This is one of the tragic chapters of the history of Mount 
Desert Island, and though nearly two hundred years have passed 
since the events recorded here, those who know the story often 
recall it as they stop to watch the breakers on the ledges at Sea- 
wall. William Herrick of Southwest Harbor, who died some 
years ago at a great age, said that when he was a boy the graves 
of the Grand Design passengers could be found on the eastern 
side of Ship Harbor. Time has completely obliterated them 

The story of Isabel Asbell has been written in blank verse 
by a direct descendant, Mrs. Julia Allen Gray of California, and 
through her generosity copies of her book have been placed in 
the public libraries at Southwest Harbor and Bernard. 

Somewhere around 1882 some small boys were digging for 
snakes among the trees on the point of land at Seawall now 
known as Wonderland and a part of Acadia National Park. They 
unearthed a quantity of old coins, discolored and corroded. Not 
realizing that there was any value in their find, they amused 
themselves by "skipping" the coins on the ledges into the sea. 
Only one or two were overlooked in the pockets of the children. 

One boy told his story at home that evening and produced a 
coin. His father went the next morning to see the location of 
the discovery and perhaps explore some more, but on his arrival 
at the place, it was evident that the other children had also told 
of their discovery and exploration had been made at once, as the 
ground was dug up in all directions. 

Some of the rescued coins are in possession of persons in 
town. One is an English piece and the half obliterated date is 
either 1720 or 1730. Doubtless the money belonged to one of 
the passengers of the Grand Design, who died without revealing 
the hiding place of his wealth. 

The passengers were known to be "people of account" and 
what could be more likely than that they should secret their store 

Song and Story 309 

of money rather than keep it about their persons. They died 
without divulging their secret. 

For many years it was thought that all trace had been lost of 
the survivors of the Grand Design shipwreck save only Isabel 
Galloway and her child and Mary Scherer, but recent years have 
yielded tidings of others. The rescued women had been scat- 
tered through the thinly settled region from Warren to Damaris- 
cotta wherever shelter could be found for them. Among them 
it seems were two children — one Robert Paul and also a baby 
girl by the name of Patterson. These children were taken to 
Bristol where they grew up and were married. Their sons and 
two daughters went up to the Sandy River Valley, as Farming- 
ton, New Sharon and Mercer were then called and they have 
many descendants in that locality. 

Recently another survivor has been traced in the person of 
Sarah Porterfield who after her rescue married John Hutchings 
and went to live at Georgetown, now Phippsburg, Maine. Her 
descendants claim that she kept a diary or journal of the happen- 
ings of that terrible winter and fragments of its contents have 
been handed down, though the journal itself has long since 
disappeared. Her story was much the same as that told by the 
others, though differing in some details. The births of the chil- 
dren of John and Sarah Porterfield Hutchings are recorded in 
the Vital Statistics of Georgetown, Maine. 


'Twas in December's dreary month, 

The snow lay on the ground. 

When Wasgatt travelling through the woods 

A track of bear he found. 

Not being armed he turn^^/ back 
And told two other men, 
Who soon with him espied the track 
Which led them to the den. 

310 Traditions and Records 

Hadley and Seavey were the two 
With Wasgatt and his son, 
Who armed themselves for the pursuit 
With axes, ball and gun. 

They travelled on for three long miles, 
O'er mountains and through snow, 
Determines? if possible 
To overtake the foe. 

When to a mountain's craggy side. 
This little band drew near. 
Then Asa Wasgatt did espy 
The den both dark and drear. 

Hadley first entered with his gun ; 
No room had he to spare. 
When two fierce eyeballs he beheld 
With fierce and hideous glare. 

So little air was in this den, 
Hadley could scarce get breath ; 
But shot his gun at the old one 
And laid her low in death. 

He then retreated from the den 
To calm the others' fears ; 
But soon did enter in again 
And clinched her by the ears. 

Now those who were outside the den 
In spite of wind and weather. 
Took hold of Hadley by the legs 
And hauled both out together. 

Now two fierce bears did yet remain 
Within this gloomy cave, 
And when the torches were all lit 
Young Wasgatt did prove brave. 

Song and Story 311 

With torch in hand he did go in 
And found them in their lair ; 
Then Hadley entered with his gun 
And fairly killed the pair. 

These three fierce bears were all brought out 
And sent into the town ; 
And these brave men who did the deed 
Have gained a great renown. 

Had this been done in ancient times 
And by historians told, 
Not Putnam's story could exceed 
This same adventure bold. 

The cave where the bears were found is in the cliffs of Mount 
Bernard near the village of Southwest Harbor. Descendants of 
these men still live on Mount Desert Island. 


In March of 1613 a small vessel, the Jonas, lay at anchor in 
the harbor of Honfleur, France. About her was the bustle of 
departure. Her cargo had been very carefully selected and the 
ship very carefully fitted for a long and perilous voyage across 
the ocean to the new land of America. Captain La Saussaye had 
had ample means and experienced advisors at his disposal and he 
had omitted nothing that would be wanting in a new colony. It 
was not for gold or adventure that the Jonas was sailing toward 
the west, but under the auspices of the great and powerful 
Society of Jesus, she was sailing for the purpose of founding a 
new settlement on the far flung shores of Acadia, and there to 
convert the inhabitants to their faith. They were to seek the 
wonderful city of Norumbega described by the Indians to those 
who had previously made the voyage, and there to build a church 
and found their belief in the new country. 

Just as the ship was about to sail, Madame de Guercheville, 
the noble lady who had furnished the funds for the expedition, 
had summoned Brother Gilbert du Thet, one of the priests who 

312 Traditions and Re^cords 

was to go forth on the mission, for a final interview with her in 
Paris. She well knew the devotion of this young man to the 
faith of his choice and she felt that on him depended the success 
or failure of the venture. 

During the interview, Madame de Guercheville unlocked a 
small casket and took from it a curious ring. It was of gold 
and of antique shape and set in it was a beautiful red stone. She 
told the young priest that the ring had always been worn by men 
of gentle blood and was one of the prized possessions of her 
family. The stone had been brought from Jerusalem by the 
famed ancestor who distinguished himself in the First Crusade 
and was said to have come from Solomon's Temple. The stone 
was a sardius, mentioned in Holy Writ and bore a strange device 
which no one had been able to describe with certainty but em- 
bodied therein were two Hebrew characters, signifying "Hope" 
and "Faith". She put the ring on his finger, which was wasted 
from self denial, and asked him to wear it, because he was going, 
forgetful of self, to labor in a cause which was dear to her heart 
and in which her interest would cease only with her life. As the 
Jesuit attempted to express his gratitude she checked him and 
said that supernatural powers had been credited to the ring ; that 
to him who should rightfully wear it, tradition claimed it would 
bring fulfillment of his dearest hopes, wishes and aims. On the 
other hand, if, by accident or crime it should come into posses- 
sion of those who had no right thereto it would not long remain 
there. It would, in such case, be lost and not again found except 
by one worthy to wear it. She told of several instances which 
seemed to prove the truth of the tradition. 

So, when the Jonas sailed out of the harbor of Honfleur a few 
days later, the sunlight fell on the glowing red stone on the 
finger of Gilbert du Thet, who pondered on what he had heard 
as to the ring bringing the fulfillment of hope to the wearer and 
he said reverently, "So be it then with me. May this be my last 
farewell to my native land. May I, in the far-off land to which 
I am going, die the death of the righteous while laboring for the 
salvation of souls." 

It is recorded on other pages of this volume how the little 
ship crossed the sea, sighted the Mount Desert hills and, landing 
at what is now Fernald Point, started the foundations of a settle- 

Song and Story 313 

ment on that beautiful situation with the two springs of clear, 
cold water, one on the eastern side of the point and one on the 
western, which were covered with the sea at high tide. To the 
east, across the Sound was an Indian encampment and the young 
priest had visions of bringing those people of the wild into his 
own faith. A little chapel was built before any other work was 
undertaken and the Indians came readily at the sound of the 
clear tones of its bell and crowded around these strange white 
men, eager to see what next would be done. 

Gardens were laid out, and the houses partly completed when 
disaster came. Capt. Samuel Argall, from the English settle- 
ment at Virginia, sailed into the peaceful harbor with drums 
beating and flags flying and in answer to a friendly hail from the 
little band on shore, sent a rattling fire of musketry into their 
midst, killing several of the French and wounding others. 
Among those to die was the devoted lay brother Gilbert du Thet. 

Capt. Argall allowed some of the French at their own re- 
quest, to take a boat which he stocked with provisions, and go 
eastward to the French settlement at St. Croix. The others, 
including Father Biard, were taken to Virginia. When the 
Governor at Jamestown heard of the encounter and learned that 
Capt. Argall had not entirely destroyed the little settlement at 
Femald Point, he was filled with anger and the next summer 
Capt. Argall was ordered to return and obliterate entirely every 
vestige of the attempted occupation of English lands by the 
hated French. So Argall's ship again sailed into Southwest 
Harbor and her crew burned all the houses, and the chapel, 
levelled the meager fortifications which had been begun and 
even cut down the wooden crosses over the graves of du Thet 
and his companions and left no sign of the hand of man on the 

After the work had been completed two sailors were going 
down to the beach on the eastern side of the point when one 
stopped at the cold spring which bubbled out of the sand and 
pebbles and began looking carefully about, turning over the 
stones and when asked by his companion what he was doing he 
said, "I was with Argall when he destroyed this settlement and 
killed some of the beggarly Frenchmen; served them right too, 
with their Popish mummeries. I helped to bury one of them — 

314 Traditions and Records 

a priest and when no one was looking I drew a curious looking 
ring off his finger and put it in my pocket. It was just my luck 
to lose it that same afternoon, not far from here. I looked for 
it then for hours but in vain and it is no use to waste any more 
time over it." Just then the signal for recall was sounded and 
the sailors hurried to obey. It was nearly a century and a half 
before any white man again attempted to make a permanent home 
on Mount Desert Island. 

Bar Harbor in the eighteen eighties. We are introduced to 
two young men ; one a hero endowed with all the virtues and 
attributes which heroes are supposed to possess, the other, his 
classmate and close friend, afflicted with an incurable disease 
which is wasting him away. The invalid has spent much time 
in France and has delved into history and become greatly inter- 
ested in the story of Madame de Guercheville and her attempt 
to assist in the conversion of the inhabitants of North America 
and especially in the story of the lost ring. He has traced its 
history from the time it was brought back from Jerusalem and 
has become obsessed with the idea that the ring can be found 
and that his hero friend is the one to find it. The friend is 
amused at the idea, but wishes to humor the invalid as he is so 
much in earnest. Finally the two young men come to Fernald 
Point and with a copy of the Jesuit Relations they trace the 
probable location of the settlement. They find the two springs 
of water on the shore and they stop to rest by the one on the 
eastern side of the point. 

The invalid announces that here is the place where the ring 
will be found. When he sees that his friend is skeptical he says 
earnestly, "Please do as I say. I am so near the other world 
that I have an insight into things that are denied to most men. 
You remember that the sailor lost the ring near to the eastern- 
most spring and history records that once before it was lost by 
a spring and found again after a century. You are the one to 
find it. Look here. Do you know what this is?" and he drew 
from his satchel a stout twig shaped like a Y. 

"It is witch hazel", he said. "Take it in your hands". 

Song and Story 315 

"Why not use it yourself?" asked the hero. But the answer 
was "No, it is you that must find the ring", and so the twig was 
grasped according to directions. Even in modem times there 
are those who believe in the magic properties of the divining rod 
of witch hazel for locating springs of water or precious minerals. 

"Now" said the invalid eagerly, "walk slowly along this chan- 
nel, holding the end horizontal and low down." 

The young man did so, half amused, half curious. He walked 
deliberately and had gone but a short distance when, to his aston- 
ishment, the twig turned in his hands. Hold it firmly as he 
would, he was powerless to prevent and down went the end until 
it pointed to a certain spot in the pebbly channel. 

The invalid had watched with extreme eagerness ; now his 
face was flushed and his eyes glistened. But eager as he was 
he would not lift a finger himself. 

He commanded his companion to dig and so he dropped the 
twig and began to search among the pebbles. He lifted the 
stones, carefully searching the sand, but found nothing. "Try 
the twig again" urged his friend. 

It was done and again it pointed downward at the exact spot 
which it had previously designated, and to make a long story 
short, after considerable exploration the search was rewarded 
and there, blackened by its long burial of two hundred and 
seventy-two years, lay the ring, its red stone glowing in un- 
dimmed brilliancy. 

As the ring brought to Gilbert du Thet his dearest wish, 
which was to die in the new land in the effort to save souls, 
so it brought to our hero his dearest wish and the ring was 
before long placed on the finger of the girl of his choice as a 
pledge of their engagement. 


It was a raw, cold day in the latter part of November about 
1763 that Thomas Richardson entered his house, at Bass Harbor, 
Mount Desert Island, a rough log cabin of two rooms with earth 
well piled up for a banking to keep out the cold wind. Deposit- 
ing an armful of wood near the fireplace to dry he said, "Wife, 
I like not the roar of the ocean on the seawall or the flight of 

316 Traditions and Re;cords 

the seagulls over the land this afternoon. To me it foretells 
a long storm on this bleak coast." 

"Why shouldst thou worry Thomas?" answered his good 
helpmate. "We have a good shelter in this snug cabin; wood 
can be easily gotten and you know the vessel has just brought 
the winter's store of food for all four families. The children 
are well. So what care we for the storm?" 

"That is just it, Mary. It is the load of provisions which 
causes me so much uneasiness, thinking that the weather will be 
so severe that several days may go by before we can let Brother 
James know of its arrival, and he probably has very little besides 
his vegetables. Between-the-Hills (now Somesville) is a long 
distance from here and in a storm the road would be hard to 

"Well, I always thought it was a woman's place to worry, 
and that a man had no idea of the meaning of the word. But 
since you seem so very anxious, I have a plan." 

"I thought you would. That is why I left my work, when 
this minute I ought to be sawing wood so as to go out fishing 
when the sea is smooth again. But what is your plan?" 

"Well Tom, we will do up the chores, have an early supper, 
put the children to bed and go up to James' for the evening and 
tell them of the arrival of the vessel. Besides, I want very 
much to see sister Rachel again before the winter sets in for 
good. It may be hard to break through the snow later on." 

"I like your plan very well", said Thomas, "and while the ox 
is eating his supper we will make our preparations." 

So Mr. Richardson set about doing the nightly chores and 
making things as snug as possible, considering their many dis- 
advantages. When all was done outside he opened the door to 
find the rude table set with a snowy cloth, delicious golden corn- 
bread and beans and tea with the accompanying molasses-jack 
instead of the present day sugar bowl. 

Although their outdoor life made them hungry, they were 
not long eating supper and making ready for the journey of 
about nine miles over a rough ox-trail that was but little used. 
Mr. Richardson decided it would be wise to take with them some 
flour and molasses and leave the rest for James to come after 
as soon as convenient. 

Song and Story 317 

With many directions to their two children, Tommie and 
Puah, as to keeping- warm and not to be afraid and to go to bed 
early, they rode away in the ox-cart for their evening visit as 
happy as though it were an automobile. 

Their journey led them over what is now the McKinley road, 
then into a wood road to the west of Southwest Harbor. Some- 
times it would merge into what is now the "Back of The Village" 
trail, and then away again back of Norwood's Cove, until it took 
the path up over Beech Hill. 

James Richardson and his wife Rachel were very glad to see 
them, also to know that the vessel had brought the winter stores 
and in the future they could have a few luxuries. As the social 
life of the two families was limited, an hour or two soon passed 
away, for they had much to tell about plans for the future, and 
what to do if the people from the mainland came over to cut any 
more hay or timber or if they brought over their cattle for 

"Mr. Somes thinks we ought to petition the Governor for 
assistance" said James. "We who live on this island all the time 
cannot sit idly by and see those people come over the bay and 
steal our rightful possessions." 

"Yes, James", said Thomas, "but we, all told, are only a 
handful and will the Governor give us any attention?" 

"It is certainly worth trying for, Tom, and it may bring us 
a great amount. I should not have had hay enough to feed my 
cow through the winter if Col. Goldthwait had not appeared 
here just at haying time and they did not dare to cut any more. 
Besides, the trees are large here, and it makes me almost green 
with rage to see those mainland people cut them down in spite 
of us." 

"They cut a great quantity of hay last summer at Bass 
Harbor", said Thomas, "but there are only Brother Stephen and 
myself to oppose them on our part of the island." 

"I would like to hear from dear old Gloucester, Rachel. The 
faces of the old home town grow dimmer and dimmer every 
year as our cares and interests multiply here", said her sister 

"I cannot forget easily the home back in Londonderry, Ire- 
land", said James. 

318 Traditions and Records 

"The chickens and my cat are as plain to me now as though 
it were but yesterday and I was only eight years old when I left 
old Ireland. It was a bright, warm day in spring and I remem- 
ber going on board the ship ; but you, Tom, were not born until 
after we had settled in Gloucester." 

"No, I missed the trip, but I am glad to say that free America 
is my birthplace. But Mary, don't you think we had better be 
going home. We have a long road to travel and Bright is none 
too swift." So, with much care in wrapping up, for the night 
was cold, they set out for their long journey home. 


That the reader may better understand the characters of this 
tale, it seems wise to give a brief historical sketch of some of 

James, Stephen and Thomas Richardson, together with their 
wives, all three sisters by the name of Gott, came to the Island 
of Mount Desert in the year 1763. James, the eldest, who was 
born in Londonderry, Ireland, in 1730, settled in Somes ville, 
called by them Between-the-Hills ; Stephen at West Bass Harbor, 
now Bernard, and Thomas, the hero of our tale, on the east side 
of Bass Harbor, now McKinley, near where P. W. Richardson's 
store and the William Underwood canning factory are now 
located. Their brother-in-law, Daniel Gott, settled on an island 
near Bass Harbor which has ever since been called Gott's Island. 

These first settlers of Mount Desert were a plain, industrious 
people, cultivating the soil, caring for their few cattle, and catch- 
ing fish in summer which were cured for winter; also shooting 
the migratory birds which pass over these shores in spring and 

The home life was bleak and bare with no amusements and 
the children early learned to depend upon themselves. The 
struggle was for a livelihood, complicated by the instance 
already mentioned, when people Hving on the mainland came 
over to the island to cut timber and hay and carry it off for their 
own use. Some years they even brought their cattle over for 
pasture, regardless of the protests of the settlers. The Mount 
Desert people, therefore, petitioned to Governor Bernard of 

Song and Story 319 

Massachusetts for redress. The petition is recorded in Bangor 
Historical Magazine and also in Street's History of Mount 


Thomas and his wife were well on the way home after the 
evening spent with their relatives and were happy with thoughts 
of the old home life back in Gloucester and that they were so 
near their brother James whose cabin was among the first at 
Somesville and whose son George, born August 16, 1763, was 
the first white child born on Mount Desert Island. Thomas' 
and Stephen's log cabins were the only ones on the southern 
part of the island. 

"I hope the children got to bed early before the fire got low, 
for this is a very cold night, Tom, and the wind is strong", said 
Mrs. Richardson as she huddled her cloak about her. 

"Yes, but we shall soon be over Beech Hill and then it will be 
warmer on the lowland through the wood." 

On they travelled, Bright making as much headway as an ox 
could. Suddenly Mrs. Richardson exclaimed, "Oh Tom! What 
is that light in the distance?" 

Mr. Richardson's face grew pale. There was no mistaking 
what it was. "It certainly looks like a fire but let us hope it is 
not our cabin." 

"But", cried the mother, "what else can it be? Stephen's 
cabin we know is far to the southwest and ours is the only one 
on that point and in that direction." 

"Well, well, we must hope it is the ox shed or something 
else. Let us not give up too easily." 

"But we are six or seven miles from home now and what are 
those poor, dear children doing? Will they be burned in their 
beds or will they get out and freeze to death this cold night?" 

On and on they travelled, urging the ox to his best speed, 
hoping against hope, praying for the lives of their children and 
yet in despair. An ox-team is very slow at best on a calm sum- 
mer day but when it is conveying distracted parents toward 
their burning home which holds their little children it is beyond 
pen to describe. Everything passed through the mother's mind. 

320 Traditions and Records 

Oh, if she had only remained at home while her husband went 
to Somesville, this might not have been. 

"Hark, Tom. What was that ?" 

"Nothing but the wind howling through the bare branches." 

"No, no. I am sure I heard voices." 

"Mary, you are making yourself sick. Don't think you hear 
voices when you know we are a long distance even now, from 
our home, but keep good courage so you will be able to work 
when we do get there." 

"But Tom, I did hear voices. There. Don't you hear that? 
Why, Tommie ! Where did you and sister come from and what 
has happened?" 

There, sure enough, were the two children in the road. The 
father lifted up the little girl while Thomas, Jr., climbed in and 
as Mr. Richardson encouraged Bright for a little more speed, 
Tommie and his sister told what had happened. 

The children had gone to bed early and were not long in 
getting to sleep beneath the heavy quilts. It must have been 
some hours later that the boy was awakened by the snapping 
of wood. The room was very light. He aroused his sister, 
told her that the house was on fire and they must dress as 
quickly as possible. So the little girl did what she could while 
Tommie hurriedly got his clothes on and then helped her. In 
the excitement they could find only one of her shoes and one 
stocking; so with quickness of mind characteristic of the pio- 
neers, Tommie put the shoe on one of her feet and the stocking 
on the other and then both children started on their journey 
toward their uncle's home Between-the-Hills where their parents 

"Oh, my dears. How thankful I am that your lives were 
spared. Isn't it a wonder, Tom, that these children were not 
hurt or burned ? How can we be thankful enough for all God's 

"That is so, Mary. Let us not murmur or complain at the 
loss of our home although it is all we have." 

Mrs. Richardson huddled her children near her and took her 
own wraps to cover them and it was not long before they were 
in sight of the burning logs. Nothing was saved. All the pro- 

Song and Story 321 

visions for the four families except what little flour and molasses 
had been taken to James that night to Somesville were burned. 
Their homestead goods, few, but necessary, were gone. It 
was indeed a sorry sight. The little ox-shed was left and that 
was better than no shelter. The excitement kept them all from 
wanting sleep, and Thomas and his wife had enough to think 
about to make plans for the future. 


Instead of the storm which the preceding day had seemed 
to foretell, the morning broke clear and cold. It was good 
November weather. Thomas emerged from the ox-shed very 
early, to find a way of taking care of his family that day. 

Looking over the bay he saw a small boat which he knew at 
once, for there was but one other anywhere on that coast besides 
his own. As it neared the shore he went down to meet it and 
Daniel Gott jumped out and asked many questions — how the 
house caught fire, what they did last night and what could be 
done now. On rising early that morning to go out after sea- 
birds, Daniel had seen the glow, smelled smoke and had rowed 
over from the island instead of going hunting. On hearing 
voices Mrs. Richardson and the children came out of the shed 
and Mr. Gott said, "You must come over on our island and get 
some breakfast and then, after resting, you will be better able 
to plan." 

So, glad to find some chance of eating and resting, they all 
went down to the boat and over to Gott's Island. Mrs. Gott 
was amazed and distressed at the misfortune and could hardly 
get the food together for asking questions. "And were the pro- 
visions all burned, Mary, and our stock none too large now?" 

"All burned dear. But when I think of the children being 
saved, we ought not to complain. There will be some way pro- 
vided since He has brought us thus far." 

While the women were trying to make the best of the situa- 
tion in the house, the men at the shore had also planned. 

"Tom, you are welcome to come in with us for the winter. 
Our room is not large, but it is better than nothing and birding 
is good, and fish and clams are plentiful. And there is my cow 

322 Traditions and Records 

which I killed a month ago not half gone and I think the pota- 
toes will hold out. They are wonderfully good. This new soil 
as well as the damp air seemed just what the crop needed." 

"Daniel, you are more than thoughtful for our interests and 
I have a mind to accept your offer for what can we do but that? 
It is too late to cut logs and build a new cabin now and besides, 
our household goods are all gone together with the vegetables 
and all those groceries from the vessel." 

"Well, then, Tom, don't worry and we will go to the house 
and see what the women have planned." 

They found the table spread with a bountiful breakfast of 
potatoes baked in the ashes, some cold meat, com bread and 
molasses. After the first pangs of hunger were satisfied, Mr. 
Gott told of the plans he had made for housing both families 
and as the women had talked of the same thing while getting 
the meal ready, it was agreed upon. The remainder of the day 
was spent in getting new berths ready for the new comers and 
changing things as best they could for the enlarged family. 

As long as the weather continued moderately warm, the men 
dug clams for food and for bait for fishing and the sea birds 
made a v/elcome addition to their slender stock of food, but there 
were many mouths to fill and the outdoor life was conducive to 
good appetites and robust health. 

As the rougher days of winter approached, the beef grew 
less and less, the fish harder to catch and although there were 
still some seabirds fit for eating, their stock of ammunition was 
almost gone. There were potatoes enough but as the days 
passed the two sturdy men knew that something must be done 
very soon. Their nearest neighbors were across Bluehill Bay 
at Naskeag Point, and although they might not have a large 
store of necessaries, the settlers of that day shared what they 

Getting plenty of wood together and making their families 
as comfortable as possible, one bright, cold morning they took 
a small quantity of potatoes, some water and their guns and 
started out in a boat for the distant shore. 

The days went by at first with good cheer for were not the 
men returning soon? and then they would be having something 

Song and Story 323 

to eat with their potatoes and meal. But after a few days a 
storm came up and then it cleared off cold and the ice beg'an 
to make around the shores until finally no boat could break 
through it. The store of food grew smaller day by day. The 
children begged for something more appetizing to eat but noth- 
ing could be had for they were on a small island surrounded by 
ice and no relief or supplies within miles. 

Every night, as the women went to their sleepless beds they 
prayed for the safety of their husbands and that the morn would 
see the ice broken away from the shores, so that the men, if 
living, could get to the island. 

Day after day passed and still the ice held, but an easterly 
storm came at last and broke up the ice and there was the open 
sea at last. Then Mrs. Gott said, "Mary, Daniel and Thomas 
must get here now if they are living." 

"I think so too", said Mrs. Richardson. And all that day they 
strained their eyes across the floating ice of the broad bay, 
praying and hoping for the sight of an approaching boat. 

The bright winter day was nearing its close, the sun casting 
long shadows over the snow covered island, when little Tom 
came running into the cabin full of excitement and crying, "I 
see something that looks like a boat 'way off." 

Of course both women ran to the door and there, sure enough 
was a boat in the distance, coming from the direction in which 
their husbands had gone. Back they went into the cabin and 
put more wood on the fire and little Tom and the others brought 
more from the woodpile because the travellers would be cold 
and hungry. Then as the boat came nearer they all went to the 
shore to meet it. 

It was indeed Thomas and Daniel, safely returned after days 
of waiting and watching, and just as the sun sank below the 
horizon, Thomas set his foot on the shore. They brought with 
them several birds, both sea ducks and partridge, a good quantity 
of fish, rabbits and ammunition. 

It did not take long to prepare one of those fish for the 
evening meal and while it was cooking the men told what they 
had endured. 

They had caught some fish the day they left home and 
reached a harbor with a few inhabitants before the storm came. 

324 Traditions and Records 

While the ice was enclosing the land they got ammunition of the 
settlers and improved every minute shooting birds and rabbits. 
But as time passed they became anxious for the safety of their 
families on their island and as soon as the ice broke up they had 
made haste to get back to their home. 

History fails to tell what harbor they were in. None seemed 
the worse for the hardships and pangs of hunger which they 
had suffered and Mary said as they sat by the fire that night and 
looked around on the faces that were near and dear to her ; "God 
has brought us safely through another crisis and I shall keep on 
trusting till I die." 


Spring came and as the days lengthened Thomas and Daniel 
would go off to Bass Harbor and cut logs for another cabin to 
take the place of the burned home. By the middle of May the 
new log cabin was suitable for habitation. 

The Gotts as well as the two Richardson families, gave them 
a share of their small stock of dishes, for in those days it took 
but little to start housekeeping and as summer was coming they 
felt that they could do without many things that in winter would 
be necessary. 

As the ox had been kept through the winter by Stephen Rich- 
ardson, brother of Thomas, whose cabin was on the west side of 
Bass Harbor (now Bernard), he was brought around to the new 
home, the ground ploughed, the garden made and as fish were 
plentiful that spring, Mr. and Mrs. Richardson felt that they 
had many blessings. 

The family spent their long lives on the same plot of land 
but made many improvements in their home from time to time, 
and they sleep their last long sleep on the land where they 
labored which is still owned by their descendants. 

Their son Thomas, the little hero of the fire, built a frame 
house very near his father's log cabin and his descendants still 
live in it. It has been enlarged and raised and made into a 
modern home, but the original timbers fashioned by the hands 
of this son of one of the first pioneers, still stand, strong and 

Song and Story 325 

Daniel Gott, on March 25, 1789, in consideration of eighteen 
pounds legal money, obtained a deed from the counties of York, 
Cumberland and Lincoln, of the two islands lying off Bass 
Harbor. He lived on the larger island until his death in 1814, 
is buried there and his descendants still own the land. 

This is but a glimpse into a few of the lives of the early 
Mount Desert Islanders, who left more sheltered homes in older 
settlements, to come into the wilderness, take up land and make 
homes for themselves and their children on this beautiful isle 
of the sea. 

Caroline R. Lawler 


In the early days of the Revolutionary War, many English 
privateers cruised along the Maine coast, preying on the trading 
vessels and frequently landing at remote settlements and exact- 
ing tribute from those who might have money or valuables 
hidden away and taking or destroying the settlers' belongings. 

Tradition says that one windy day in early autumn there was 
an exciting race across Bluehill Bay, east of Mount Desert 
Island. A small English privateer was chased by an irate 
Yankee craft. The Englishman sought to escape by running 
out of the passage between Bass Harbor Head and Gott Island, 
and thence to the open sea, but found the way blocked by an- 
other American vessel — a small fisherman, which headed him off. 

Seeing no possible escape the men of the privateer threw 
overboard most of their valuables and ran their vessel into a 
tiny cove where she grounded and the crew waded ashore and 
took to the woods. 

The little cove has long been known as Ship Harbor (on the 
southern point of Mount Desert Island) and at low tide there 
are even now pointed out to credulous observers, objects at the 
bottom of the clear water, said to be remains of the timbers of 
the English craft. 

In 1789 Daniel Gott, one of the early settlers at Bass Harbor, 
bought of the State of Massachusetts two small islands lying 
a mile or two from the shore and moved there with his family. 
These islands are part of the group chartered by Champlain as 

326 Traditions and Re;cords 

Isles des Plaisants, Daniel Gott's descendants still own much 
of the larger island, which since his ownership has been called 
Gott's Island. 

The people of Gott's Island have always been honest, hardy 
fishermen and there are now several summer cottages on the 
ocean side of the island, where the view of the open sea and of 
Mount Desert hills is unsurpassed. The island is a favorite 
picnic ground for summer visitors from nearby resorts. 

In the years preceding the Civil War the fishing business in 
the adjoining waters was poor ; there was, of course, no way to 
ship the fresh fish and the only way to dispose of them was to 
salt and dry them and then take them many miles in a boat to 
market. For many years the men of the islands went in vessels 
to the "Bay-sha-lore" as they pronounced it, after mackerel. I 
was nearly grown up before I found out that "Bayshalore" was 
part of the great bay of the St. Lawrence and was spelled Bay 
of Chaleur. 

As early in spring as the weather permitted the gardens were 
planted and things made as comfortable as possible for the 
women and children of the dozen or more families then living 
on the island. Then the men sailed away to be gone all summer, 
leaving the women, with the help of the half-grown boys and 
men too old to go, to care for the growing crops, get in the hay 
for the few cattle and otherwise prepare for the coming winter. 
I have heard my father say that for several summers, he, a boy 
of from twelve to fifteen years, was the oldest "man" on the 

One day in the summer of the late fifties two of the women 
decided to go out and catch a mess of fish to vary their fare 
which must have been monotonous at times. They rowed oflf 
toward Bass head from which a submerged shoal called the Bar, 
runs across to the island. This has always been a favorite 
fishing ground and still is. 

The women baited their hooks and dropped them over the 
side of the boat and waited for a bite but the fish were shy. 
After a while one felt something on her hook. "But", said she, 
"it can't be a fish ; it doesn't move, most likely it is a bunch of 

Song and Story 327 

She pulled in the line, looking over the boat's side as she did 
so to see what was on the hook that felt so heavy, and she was 
much excited to see attached to the hook a small canvas bag 
tightly tied. 

As it came to the top of the water the bottom of the bag 
burst and down through the clear sea, just beyond reach of their 
clutching hands went dozens of gold coins and all they brought 
home to prove their story was the empty bag, supposed to have 
been thrown over from the English privateer so long before. 

Harriet R. Murphy 

In 1792 the distinguished French statesman Talleyrand, 
sought refuge from many difficulties by coming to America. 
He is said to have landed either in Wiscasset or Castine and he 
visited several different places in Maine during his stay. 

A New York paper many years ago published an interesting 
communication from what was said to be a reliable source, 
claiming that he was a native of Mount Desert Island in Alaine 
instead of having been born in Paris as most of his biographers 
assert. The writer said that his information was obtained from 
Hon. Edward Hutchinson Robbins of Boston, who died in 1829. 
Mr. Robbins was something of an antiquarian and renowned for 
his persistency in following clues. It was said of him that "his 
organ of inquisitiveness was very prominent." He believed and 
wrote that Talleyrand was born at Mount Desert. 

Mr. Robbins was at one time Lieut.-Governor of Massachu- 
setts and was one of the Commissioners in charge of building 
the State House in Boston. It is said that the columns which 
ornament the second story were made from trees cut at West 
Magurrawock (now Robbinston, Maine) which was his planta- 
tion and the name changed to Robbinston in his honor. 

When Talleyrand was in Boston he was introduced to Mr. 
Robbins and they became quite intimate. A few weeks after 
their acquaintance Mr. Robbins was called on business to ]\Iount 
Desert, where, to his surprise he found Talleyrand, incog., and 
on questioning him in regard to his business there he returned 
an evasive answer and treated him very coldly during his stay. 

328 Traditions and RiecoRDS 

The visit of the Frenchman caused considerable surprise 
among the few inhabitants of the place at the time and when 
Mr. Robbins informed them that he was a French gentleman 
and they remembered his questions and apparent interest in the 
Island, they began to recall an incident that had been handed 
down from earlier days. They noted too, that the stranger was 
lame and that reminded them of the story of "French Boy", as 
they used to call him, who was taken from Southwest Harbor 
about the time of the close of the French War. 

Mr. Robbins made particular inquiries in regard to the 
French Boy and was told that sometime previous to the war a 
French ship of war came into the harbor to make repairs and to 
obtain wood and water ; that while there an officer became inti- 
mate with a young girl, the daughter of a fisherman then absent, 
which created scandal among the people and in due time the girl 
gave birth to a boy. 

The following year the officer made his appearance again, 
provided for the mother and son and made some presents to the 
grandparents with whom they lived, which apparently reconciled 
them and he promised to marry the girl when he came again. 
Then he went away and never returned. 

When the boy was about a year old the mother accidentally 
overturned a kettle of boiling water on his feet which made him 
lame for life. Soon after this the mother died. 

Later another officer (not the father of the child) came for 
the purpose of taking the boy to France, saying that land and 
titles awaited him in that country. At first the grandparents 
would not give him up but they were promised money enough to 
make them comfortable for life and told of the high position 
which the child would have and at last they consented and the 
boy was taken away. 

Of course at the time these events are said to have happened 
there was no permanent settlement at Mount Desert Island. But 
there is plenty of proof that people lived at least for a time in 
many places on the island ; many coming from European 
countries for the fishing and spending the summers here. Men 
from Canada brought their families here to camp for the warm 
months while they filled their vessels with fish from the rich 
fishing grounds all around Mount Desert. 

Song and Story 329 

Although there is no proof of the truth of this story, yet it 
has been handed down in reputable families of the island for a 
century and a half. 

Read it now as it is told in detail : 

As Sir Walter Scott writes — 

"I cannot tell how the truth may be; 
I say the tale as 'twas said to me." 


Somewhere about the year 1753 or 54 there lived in a small 
house at the head of Southwest Harbor a fisherman and his 
pretty granddaughter. The man was a gruff and surly old 
fellow of French blood who kept his own counsel as to where he 
came from and the management of his own affairs and the few 
neighbors ignored him usually as he disregarded them. The 
people who were in Southwest Harbor at that time were families 
of fishermen from Massachusetts mostly, who came for the sum- 
mer sometimes bringing their families to spend the warm months 
in rough camps and returning to their homes in the autumn. 
When the permanent settlers came in 1762 there is no mention 
of any persons living in the vicinity. 

The pretty granddaughter was a friend of all, from the tiniest 
child to the old men who sat in the sun mending the nets, and 
including the Indians who came every summer to spend a few 
months in hunting and fishing because, as they said, "We are 
never sick here." 

The maiden was loved by all and admired too, for her beauty 
of face and form made her good to look upon, while her kind 
heart and winsome ways made her beloved by old and young. 

One day a great ship sailed into the harbor and dropped 
anchor in the deep water near what we now call Greening's 
Island. The French flag flew from her masthead and soon 
officers and men came ashore to fill their casks with fresh water 
and to purchase fish and the wild berries which grew abundantly 
then as now, on the rocky uplands and the mountains. 

330 Traditions and Re;cords 

The fisher maiden had baskets of fresh berries, for she loved 
to wander about the shores and hillsides, gathering the wild 
fruits and flowers. 

The young officer who bought her berries lingered long at 
the door of the little old house, and when he left it was under- 
stood that he should come again on the morrow and go with her 
to see where such luscious fruits grew. And after the morning 
spent on the hillside together, what was more natural than that 
she should go with him at evening when the full moon rose out 
of the sea, to show the wonderful beauty of the scene from the 
high hill above the spot where once the mission of St. Sauveur 
was established. 

Another day they must go to the hill by the lake under the 
frowning cliffs of the mountain to hear the echo that to this day 
gives back a clear, ringing note in answer to a call and sends it 
back again and again in a weird and wonderful way. 

To the southern point of the island to see the tremendous 
pounding of the surf after a storm was another ramble, and 
every day as they wandered over the hills or sat by the restless, 
ever-moving sea, the handsome stranger in his imposing uniform 
murmured sweet words in the trusting ears of the girl until her 
world centered around him and her life's future for weal or for 
woe was all in his hands. 

One day there was a wedding in the little hamlet where the 
marriage service was read by one from the ship who claimed to 
be a chaplain, and the girl became the bride of the handsome 
officer. The fisherfolk took a holiday and much to eat and drink 
was furnished from the big ship which tugged at her anchors at 
the harbor's entrance. 

Then followed summer days of such happiness to the trusting 
girl as made the time pass like a delightful dream that knows 
no waking. 

The waking came though, one day when the bridegroom told 
her that his ship must sail on the morrow. Her grief knew no 
bounds and she begged him to take her with him to far away 
France for she felt that she could not live if she were separated 
from her husband. 

Song and Story 331 

He pointed out that it was impossible for her to go on the 
ship, but he promised with many a caress, to come back for her 
before many months to take her to his home beyond the sea 
and with that he left her. 

White and despairing she watched the great ship weigh 
anchor the next morning at daybreak and sail proudly and stead- 
ily, out of the harbor and away beyond the horizon. She 
strained her eyes to see the last vanishing sail and then she crept 
back to her grandfather's house to begin her lonely watch for 
the return of her lover. 

The days went by and lengthened into weeks ; summer died 
and autumn spread her banners on the land. Blackberries 
ripened on the hillside and the maples in the forest flamed with 
red and yellow. The meager harvests of cabbage and potatoes 
were gathered, fruits and berries were dried, fish were salted and 
laid away for winter, most of the fishermen sailed with their 
belongings for their distant homes and the one or two who re- 
mained banked their houses to resist the cold winds that rushed 
in from the icy Atlantic Ocean and tugged at doors and windows 
for entrance. 

The Indians went away to the inland forests and the moun- 
tains seemed to lay aside the air of protectiveness that they wore 
in summer and to stand somber and grim awaiting the chill touch 
of winter. By and by the snow came and covered the evergreen 
forests with a cloud of white and winter was upon the land. 

In the spring when the skies were growing softer and the 
winds were whispering of warmer days to come, a little son was 
born to the young mother in the house at the head of the harbor. 
She could trace his father's likeness in the tiny features — a like- 
ness that grew more and more apparent as the weeks passed 
and the child grew older. "He will surely come now that the 
winter is past", she would murmur and smile to think how glee- 
fully she would show the wonderful boy to his father, who must 
surely adore him. 

Every day, with her baby in her arms, she would climb to 
her lookout on the hill where she would be sure to catch the first 
glimpse of a sail that was bound for the harbor. But the days 
went by and no sail appeared on the horizon. 

332 Traditions and Records 

Summer passed, autumn again deepened into winter and again 
the spring came, but no ship and no handsome officer came from 
across the seas. 

True, some fishing vessels from France sought refuge in the 
harbor occasionally, but their crews could give no comforting 
answers to the eager questions of the sorrowful girl, but they 
may have carried her story back across the ocean with them. 
Then Wolfe defeated Montcalm on the Plains of Abraham and 
by that battle France lost her claim to New England so she no 
longer sent her ships to patrol the Maine coast. 

And so time passed. The girl's face lost its rosy glow and a 
look of sorrow marked her brow. Her step was less light and 
her ready smile faded except for her little son, who grew sturdy 
and handsome with every passing day. 

When the child was about two years old he met with a serious 
accident. A great kettle of boiling water had been taken from 
the fire and set on the hearth for a moment and the little fellow 
overturned it on himself He was terribly burned and for days 
his life hung in the balance. He finally recovered, but the poor 
little leg that was so terribly burned was drawn up so that the 
child was always lame and walked with difficulty. 

Five or six years went by. The path by which the lonely 
woman climbed to the hill daily was worn deep by her feet. 

One day her long vigil was rewarded and she saw a sail 
approaching. Nearer and nearer it came until her straining eyes 
could see that the ship was flying the French flag. It might be 
her husband returning to his bride and to the little son whom he 
had never seen. She hastened back to the house to be ready to 
greet him there with all the years of waiting forgiven in the joy 
of reunion. 

When the great ship had dropped anchor almost in the same 
spot where that other ship had lain years before, she saw a boat 
put off and rowed swiftly to the shore. A tall, distinguished 
stranger landed and asked if a woman with a young child could 
be found in the settlement, giving her name. He was directed 
to the house where the girl lived with her boy, her grandfather 
having died some time before. 

The cold hand of fear clutched at her heart as she saw the 
stranger approaching. And well might her cheek blanch and 

Song and Story 333 

her hands tremble, for she was told that her husband was dead, 
that he had been of high and noble ancestry and had left great 
estates to which his son was heir and that his ship had come to 
take the boy back to France that he might be educated to fill the 
position that would be his when he became of age. 

Carefully the visitor explained the great privileges and bene- 
fits that would come to the child if he were allowed to go to the 
land of his ancestors, very adroitly he hinted that later she might 
be allowed to cross the sea to see for herself the place that would 
be his and of which she must not deprive her son. 

The stranger had brought abundant gold, but the poor girl 
heeded not the treasure with which he sought to tempt her ; she 
thought only of her child and the opportunity that was his. 
Long hours the messenger talked and then he sat silent while 
the poor, grief-striken young mother made her decision. 

When he rowed back to the ship toward evening, the fisher 
folk, who had gathered on the shore to gaze on the strange 
sights, waved farewell to the tiny boy on the shoulder of the dis- 
tinguished stranger who had won his baby fancy with a few 
glittering baubles. In the humble little house at the head of the 
harbor, the bags of gold lay unheeded where the visitor had 
placed them and the poor mother, "bereft and widowed of her 
own" lay in a swoon on the floor alone. The ship weighed 
anchor and sailed away, her mission in America accomplished. 

The years came and went. The humble settlers on Mount 
Desert Island heard of "wars and rumors of wars" that troubled 
the lands across the sea, but of those who rose or fell by reasoi,. 
of affairs of state they knew naught nor cared. 

No one knows whether the poor young mother died in South- 
west Harbor or went away, but years afterward a man of marked 
appearance who "spoke as one having authority" and who limped 
as he walked, appeared among them and asked guarded questions 
of the settlers regarding the child who had been taken away and 
of his mother. It was long afterward that the people learned 
that the visitor had been recognized by a man from Boston who 
had come to Mount Desert on business connected with land titles 
and who was puzzled at the interest which the stranger showed 
in the vicinity. 

334 Traditions and Records 

The little house long since crumbled away and the stone wall 
which surrounded its garden sank with the years into the ground. 
But sweet cinnamon roses struggled for many summers around 
the rough stone doorstep and the lillies that the young mother 
planted pushed their green blades through the thick grass for 
more than a century. And now even those frail blossoms have 
passed and nothing marks the spot which is said to be the birth- 
place of the famous French statesman — Charles Maurice de 


It has often be said that the State of Maine is a good place 
in which to raise young men. I think there is much truth in 
this statement. Her sons have gone out in every direction, in 
most instances making good business men and good citizens, 
and many have filled important places of honor and trust. Some 
are ready to say that all the most enterprising business men leave 
the State. I grant that a great many of them do, but some are 
left and I have no fear but that they will take care of their home 
interests. The attachment to home is strong and many return 
and some are heard to say "The State of Maine is a good enough 
place for me to live in." 

Mount Desert Island has not been behind the rest of the State 
in raising men of courage, energy and high moral principles. It 
is of one of these, Mr. Stephen Richardson, that I wish to speak. 

He was born at Beech Hill (which was also the birthplace 
of the late Bishop Clark of Cincinnati, Ohio), July 1791. His 
childhood was passed in this enchanting spot, surrounded by the 
mountains and with Echo Lake but a short distance from his 
father's house. Here, with his companions, he waded, bathed 
and swam or rowed upon the lake in summer and skated upon its 
icy surface in winter. And not the least attraction was the won- 
derful echo of sound which gives to this lovely sheet of water 
its name. 

Mr. Richardson was an active participant in the Battle of 
Norwood's Cove. A brave handful of men had determined to 
defend the vessels which had been taken into the Mill Pond at 
Southwest Harbor for safety while a British war ship was cruis- 

Song and Story 335 

ing the coast and destroying all American shipping during the 
war of 1812. A skirmish occurred at what is now called The 
Back Shore at the entrance to the Mill Pond, and several of the 
British were killed or wounded. 

As the Americans fired on the enemy from behind trees and 
rocks and were thus unseen by the foe, there were none killed, 
and the British withdrew. 

Mr. Richardson was a frequent and ever welcome guest at 
my father's house and although the frost of many winters had 
whitened his head when I first heard him relate his experience 
at the battle of Norwood's Cove, the kindling eye and flushed 
countenance told plainly what the excitement of the hour must 
have been. "But we did not do right", he said in conclusion. 
"We fired upon them as soon as they came abreast of us. Had 
we allowed them to pass in a short distance before firing, they 
could not have got out so quickly and we should have killed as 
many again of them." 

He paid no attention to our look of dismay as the thought 
crossed our mind that perhaps he had taken the life of a fellow 
being, but added with evident satisfaction, "But we killed con- 
siderable many of them, though." 

Much of Mr. Richardson's life was passed upon the ocean, 
and it was a rare treat to us to listen to the stories of the sea 
which he drew from the storehouse of his wonderful memory. 
He was a man of great strength and purity of character, possess- 
ing many traits that constitute a noble manhood ; especially 
those traits so lovely when combined in a Christian and a gen- 
tleman. He retained his remarkable faculties until his death, 
which occurred Sept. 5, 1877. He was not dismayed at the 
approach of the "king of terrors", but met the last moments as 
calmly as if called upon to undertake a journey. 

He was much attached to his island home and viewed with 
astonishment and pleasure the rapid changes at Bar Harbor and 
other places on the island of Mount Desert, and, though always 
professing his willingness to depart this life was sometimes 
heard to say that he would like to live a few years longer just to 
see what improvements would be made. 

336 Traditions and Re;cords 

Bom in the eig-hteenth century, he had seen steamboats, rail- 
cars, the telegraph and many other wonderful inventions come 
into general use. It was while on one of the before-mentioned 
visits to my father's house, that, as he sat listening to the reading 
of an account of shipwreck and disaster, he said, "Coming on 
allowance ! I know something of what that means. I have been 
on allowance with only one potato a day and very small at that." 
We learned from him the following particulars : 

A few years after the close of the War of 1812, Mr. Richard- 
son went one winter with Capt. William Spurling of Cranberry 
Isles, to carry a load of plaster from Eastport to Baltimore. 
The vessel was what is called a topsail schooner ; that is, having 
yards on her foremast ; a class of vessels very common at that 
time, but now seldom met with. She was built at Cranberry 
Island, having been commenced before the war ; but owing to the 
dull times was not completed until some time after its close, in 
consequence of which, the vessel did not prove as strong as she 
otherwise would probably have been. 

On their passage out they encountered a severe gale in which 
they lost their boat and the vessel was very badly wrecked. In 
the long, furious northwester that followed, they were driven 
hundreds of miles out of their way, bringing them into quite 
warm weather. At one time thoughts were entertained of going 
in to Bermuda, but, fearing that the vessel would be condemned 
and sold as a wreck and lured by the mild weather, they resolved 
to take her home to Cranberry Island if possible. They had not 
counted on the severe weather that followed in which they found 
that the vessel was in even worse condition than they had sup- 

A number of times they succeeded in nearing the coast, only 
to be driven off many miles again. It was found necessary to 
put the men on allowance and also to reduce the ration from time 
to time. They could now carry but little sail on the foremast 
as it caused the vessel to leak so badly and every seaman knows 
how essential to progress are the head sails of any craft. 

One day Mr. Richardson said to Capt. Spurling, "I wish that 
mast was out of the vessel." "So do I" the captain replied; 
"but I am afraid that should it be cut away it would so com- 
pletely wreck her that she would soon founder." 

Song and Story 337 

Mr. Richardson said, "We shall never get in with that heavy 
mast wrecking her all the time. If we were rid of that we could 
rig a jury mast and our prospect of seeing home again would be 

Their provisions were growing less and less and the men 
were growing weaker all the time. Pumping by hand is not easy 
work for men with scarcely anything to eat and Mr. Richardson 
had formed a plan in his mind for getting rid of the troublesome 
mast and although it was a hazardous one, he resolved to put it 
into execution. The chain bolts which held the shrouds of the 
foremast had worked loose and those on the lee side had to be 
driven in occasionally to keep them from coming out altogether. 

One night when it was his turn at the wheel, with the wind 
blowing quite a heavy breeze, he kept the vessel so that the 
shrouds on one side were slack and one bolt and then another 
worked out and swung loose ; then keeping her so as to bring the 
other shroud taut, in an instant every lanyard parted, the heavy, 
cumbersome mast toppled and fell over the side with a fearful 
crash, bringing those below to the deck to see what new disaster 
had befallen them. 

Everything needed for the rigging of a jury mast was saved; 
the rest was cut away and soon drifted out of sight. After 
rigging the jury mast the vessel did not leak as badly as before 
and new courage seemed to spring up in every heart. 

After many reverses the hills of Mount Desert at last came 
in view and never was the sight of them more welcome. Not 
long after, the wind suddenly changed with every indication of 
another fierce northwester. Should they be driven off the coast 
again certain starvation stared them in the face. As they were 
so far to the eastward it was deemed advisable to try to get into 
Prospect Harbor which they finally entered and came to anchor 
sometime during the night. Safe at last after having been for 
sixty days on a wreck. 

Before retiring to sleep the last remaining food on the 
vessel — a small piece of salt pork, was cooked, divided and eaten. 
In the morning the dismasted, weather-beaten craft attracted 
attention from the shore. One man came down and hailed them 
and asked, "Why don't you come ashore?" 

338 Traditions and Rj^cords 

"We cannot", was the answer. "We have no boat." 

The man procured a boat and brought them all ashore and to 
his own home. They were reduced almost to skeletons and so 
weak they could hardly walk. The people of the house were 
aware that caution must be used in giving food to men who were 
so nearly starved. An old lady sitting in the corner and regard- 
ing them with compassion, said, "I think some new milk would 
be the best thing to give them." 

Each man drank freely of the milk ofifered them, some drink- 
ing nearly a quart. "After a short time", said Mr. Richardson, 
"I began to feel sick and on going out I threw up all the milk I 
had drank." All the others did the same. Some gruel was then 
given them which they retained. 

The vessel was taken home to Cranberry Island the first fav- 
orable chance. 

They had been gone nearly all winter and their friends and 
families had long since given them up as lost and were over- 
joyed at their return. 

Mr. Richardson's home was at Southwest Harbor at Seawall, 
near the place where the Seawall Hotel used to stand. Later the 
house was occupied by Mr. Thomas Stanley and Mr. Richardson 
moved to Broad Cove and from there to his old home at Beech 
Hill. He did not retire from the sea until he was nearly sixty 
years of age and made many successful voyages to the West 
Indies and other ports, passing through many thrilling scenes 
upon the ocean but he was never afterwards reduced to the neces- 
sity of "coming on allowance." 

Written at Tremont, April 27, 1885, by Susan Gott Babbidge. 

Song and Story 339 


"Flying- Place" at the Narrows is a passage of water about 
150 feet wide at high tide and dry at low tide, separating Thomp- 
son's Island from Mount Desert Island. A bridge was built 
across the Flying Place soon after Eden was incorporated in 

In January, 1836, the legislature of Maine passed an act 
creating William Thompson and John Haynes, their associates 
and successors, a body politic and corporate, by the name of The 
Proprietors of Mount Desert Bridge Corporation, granting them 
certain powers and privileges among which was the right to 
build a bridge over Mount Desert Narrows from the mainland 
in Tremont to Eden and to establish and collect toll for crossing 
said bridge. Bridge to be completed within two years after 
September 1, 1836, or charter became null and void. 

There was in the act this proviso : "Provided however that 
after the period of twenty years, the towns of Eden, Trenton and 
Mount Desert or either of them shall have the privilege of pur- 
chasing said bridge at the original cost of erecting the same for 
the purpose of making it a free bridge." 

The capital stock was $5000, with 100 shares and $50 each. 
These shares were taken by 59 persons from one to seven shares 

The first meeting of the corporation was called July 2, 1836. 
Col. John Black was appointed president and William Thomp- 
son and John M. Noyes contracted to build the bridge, which 
was begun at once and finished in the fall of 1837. 

This bridge served the public for many years and toll was 
collected until the coming of the automobile to Mount Desert 
Island. Then it was purchased by the island towns and on 
Sunday, June 3, 1917, it was made a free bridge. 

On May 31, 1920, the new cement bridge was dedicated as a 
War Memorial. 

340 Traditions and RjecoRos 


The following lines were written by some unknown local poet 
for the occasion of the dedication of the first bridge from Mount 
Desert Island to the main land at The Narrows on August 16, 

Since man was first created, 
The watery waves have rolled 
And swept along this passage, 
Obstructing it with shoals. 

The fish along were sporting 
Amidst the swelling tides. 
The savage from his cabin 
Across this passage glides. 

The groves were dressed in mourning 
Around its flowing banks. 
While moose and deer were playing 
Their most romantic pranks. 

The Indian with his paddle 
Did cleave the flowing stream. 
His children with the bubbles 
Amused in childish dreams. 

But what had man achieved 
Within one hundred years? 
The land around is cleared ; 
The Indian disappears. 

And now arrest this passage. 
Obstructions to defeat; 
A bridge is now erected 
With workmanship complete. 

Song and Story 341 

Made up with stone and timber, 
The waters to defy, 
And then with sand and gravel 
A road is built on high. 

Those persons are deserving 
Much credit and applause, 
Who snatched away this passage 
From Neptune's watery jaws. 

May they all be rewarded 
For all their toil and pain ; 
Long may this bridge continue 
To bear its builder's name. 

And when in death they slumber, 
This bridge will still remain, 
While many a passing stranger 
Will ask its builder's name. 

Until Time is no longer, 
This work of art will show 
Amidst the tide of waters 
Which ever ebb and flow. 

Success to the directors 
Who first devised a plan 
To place this bridge across it 
To help their fellowman. 



Acadia 1 

Allen 115, 


Andros, Sir Edmund 

Appalachian Mountain 

Argall, Sir Samuel 


Aroostook War 

Asbell, Isabel 




Atherton 45, 87, 



13, 26, 218 

, 2, 5, 13, 86 

148, 177, 189 


19, 20, 42 

Club 126 

6, 7, 8, 

9, 10, 12 







236, 271, 274 


271, 276, 277 

204, 205 


49, 50, 57, 60 

2, 43 


31, 59, 103, 191, 192 

16, 30, 32 

160, 183 

169, 171 

38, 67, 235, 274 


31, 93, 204 

13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 

22, 23, 24, 25, 28, 30 

4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11 

177, 178 

59, 155, 200, 203 

175, 184 

140, 181, 182 







Baptist Church 

Bar Harbor 



Bass Harbor 



Beech Hill 









Blake, Walter 



Boston and Bangor S. S. Co. 18 

Bowden 31, 192, 218, 219 

Bowker, Rev. Samuel 197, 264 

Boylston, Ward Nicholas 26 

Bracy 175 

Branscom 271 

Brawn 142 

Brigham 164 

Brookside Cemetery 







Burying Grounds 





CCC Camp 

143, 144. 163 
51, 53 
31, 96, 125 
129, 217, 225, 279 
209, 214, 216, 
220, 226, 235, 236 
31, 59, 136, 198 

13, 17, 18, 20, 

21, 23, 43, 281 



37, 86, 87, 128, 129, 

150, 159, 160, 161, 175 


84, 87, 146, 178 



208, 222, 226, 

227, 229, 230, 234 



1, 2, 3, 11 



Chilles 262 

Christian Science Church 74 

Church, Col. Benj. 21 

Church, Frederick 268 

Congregational Church 45, 50, 

195, 196, 197 
Congregational Church at Somes- 

ville 244, 245, 246, 247 

Claremont 105, 113, 168 

Clark 31, 55, 85, 89, 99, 

164, 166, 167, 168, 170, 171, 172, 

173, 236, 274 
Clement 146, 171 

Cleveland 198 

Closson 166, 176 

Cobbett, Thomas 19 

Cockle 180, 181 

Coffin 106 

Cogswell 200 

Colton 2B9 



Coming on Allowance 







6, 9, 12, 13, 30, 


136, 137 

n, 56, 

80, 82, 260, 265 



Field, Rachel 












Fish Story 



31, , 

53, 54, 80, 82, 145 



Crist, Prof. : 

H. M 



136, 141, 165 


149, 155, 215 



Cranberry Isles 

31, 36, 55, 279 

Fleury, Capt. Chas. 

4, 5, 7, 8, 9 


163, 199 

Flying Place 





100, 137 


ISO, 154 

Forsythe, Rev. Wm. 

T. 72 

Croix, St. 

2, 3 







Custom House 

36, 184 


31, 38, 107, 152 



French, E. Webster 
French line 


Dale, Gov. Thos. 

9, 10 


87, 107, 145 









Galloway 301, 302, 304, 305, 306 






131, 143 

Gamble, Archibald 

306, 307 

Deming, Dr. 


269, 277 




126, 259 


31, Z1, 62, 211, 



214, 221, 280, 285 



Gilpatric, Walter 




Gilpin, Donald 


Dodge 31, 

42, 45, 59 

, 63, 224, 229 


132, 194 



Goldthwaite, Col. Thos. 30 



183, 184, 198, 

Good Templars 




205, 217, 218 

Googin, Dr. 



131, 134, 157 


134, 147 


67, 68 

Gott 30, Z\, 

45, IZ, 165, 206 


114, 149, 165 




207, 289 

Grand Design 

22, 301 





Duck Island 

286, 293 




139, 140 

Greening's Island 

7, 206 

Durgain 81, 

, 103, 


184, 188, 189 


42, 260 




139, 140 

Du Thet, Gilbert 

4, 7, 9, 10 


206, 288 



Eaton 31, ' 

47, 51 

, 52, 

201, 209, 210 


17, 21, 23, 24, 

Echo Lake 


28, 30, 31, 288 



Grow, Wm. 

31, Zl, 204 

Episcopal Church 




Esty, Robert 


Gross, Aaron 

132, 215 


187, 188, 193 

Guercheville, Mme. 


4, 10 


155, 176, 210 


182, 195 


31, 309 



Hadlock, Epps 

31, 98, 201, 



281, 283, 284, 285 


INDEX OF name;s 

Hall Quarry 

91, 295 





156, 158 


31, 215, 262 



90, : 

104, 165, 


146, 176, 270 



174, 186 





Hardy, Sir Thos. 

96, 100 





Lee, Jesse 

65, 67 



141, 143, 144, 145 


31, 182 






116, 156 



185, 186, 191, 200 






261, 268 


31, 80, 84, 87 






161, 164 

Herrick 29 

, ^7, 

126, 127, 159, 221 



Hersey, Edwin 

139, 140 









, 32, 158, 159, 165 



146, 261 


171, 191 

Lurvev 2,%, 69, 



141, 148, 


145, 146, 154 

220, 221, 




285, 286 




31, 55 



150, 214, 215, 262 


133, 115 




93, 141, 188, 211 


30, 139 





Hull's Cove 

18, 21, 24, 43 


169, 271 


6, 7, 13, 19, 21 


268, 269 

167, 254, 255, 256 



!. 36. 104 

Island House 

166, 174 


12, 31, 104 

Islesford Collection 289 


6, 46, 47, 95, 




206, 250 


156, 157, 158 



Jesuits 4, 

5, 8 

, 9, 10, 12, 13, 311 

Mason 115, 




259, 273 


164, 166, 169, 186 






147, 153 


4, 7, 9, 10 


142, 169 


24, 30 

Masse, Fathe 



Joy 145, 


255, 265, 266, 267 




151, 152, 






178, 179 


4, 5 




163, 164, 165 





















164, 192, 193, 217 




38, 48, 53, 108, 
205, 247, 273, 277 




179, 235, 250 





171, 174 




59, 144 




141, 177 





203, 217 






281, 288 


206, 219, 288 




160, 272 

La Saussaye 

4, 6, 7, 8, 9 










257, 259 

Reed 31, 59, 154, 163, 177, 259, 263 

Mt. Vernon 

296. 297 


166, 174, 204 


141, 142 


194, 204 
132, 190 

Neal 85, 



122, 123, 147 






198. 199. 201. 


24, 29, 31, 32, 36, 45, 




218, 227, 228 

48, 68, 85, 99, 101, 153, 155, 164, 



236, 237 

', 242, 243, 245, 249, 250, 



253, 257 

', 258, 259, 262, 267, 269, 



59, 60. 61. 64 

272, 273 

:, 274. 315 



45. 49. 57, 85 


84, 87, 96, 121, 185, 230 



141, 158, 161 

Robbins 143, 146, 147, 175, 327, 328 




198, 260, 276 


179, 212 




7%, 127, 131, 133, 139. 


254, 257, 264 

153, 154, 
181, 200, 

155, 156. 178, 179, 180, 
210, 212 

Ocean House 

92, 184 


165, 200 


57 ■ 


146, 166, 212 


188, 189 









101, 166, 167. 



202, 269, 274 




8, 10 


31, 74, 150, 269, 271 


56, 113, 168 










45, 157, 158, 273 


3, 4, 


18, 20, 21. 42 


175, 179 


3, 4 


5, 6, 9 




118, 152, 168 


281, 284, 289 








301, 302, 306 








139, 151, 152 

Plymouth Co 



174, 271 








12, 22 

Porterfield, Sarah 


Sieur de Monts 1, 2, 3 

Port Royal 

4, 10 


79, 144, 175 


164, 187 


97, 144, 183, 187, 191 



251, 261, 263 






192, 263, 269, 270 




29, 32, 45, 52, 89, 



153, 239, 

240, 241, 243, 244, 245, 



246, 247, 
257, 258, 

249, 251, 253, 254, 256, 
259, 260, 261, 262, 263, 


3, 13, 21, 43 

264, 265, 

266, 267, 268, 269, 270, 


4, 9, 10 

271, 275, 

276, 277, 287, 288 

Somers (Summers) 134, 135, 


185, 219, 220 

136, 215 




157, 158, 160 




191, 202 


192, 193 




105, 109 




31, 62, 97, 98, 



192, 194, 202, 281, 282 


56, 57, 114 


30, 279 



Stanley 31, 92, 118, 130, 140, 

165, 166, 175, 182, 183, 184, 185, 

187, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 

194, 195, 199, 200, 201, 202, 204, 

205, 217, 218, 228, 259 

Starling 137 

Sterling 187 

Stewart 141 

Strickland 52, 53, 145 

Stinson 68, 69, 143 

Stoddard 187 

Street 165 

Stuart 20O 


Tarr 27, 











Towne, Salem 







Tual, Mark 




22, 181, 327 

30, 121, 138, 143, 215 


184, 188 

96, 97, 98, 100. 101 

31, 57 

31, 76, 78, 276 

57, 162 

206, 288 

105, 157, 159 


194, 195, 198, 199 

Jr. 26, 31, 128 

105, 157 

85, 160 


6, 7, 9, 10 


141, 142, 160, 175 

68, 69, 236 

31, 185, 186, 191, 216 

26, 194 
125, 132, 134 


117, 165, 172, 173 



Verranzo, John 





140, 153, 176, 177 


31, 184, 185, 186, 

189, 193, 202, 217 


35, 36, 45, 48, 

59, 64, 235, 274 


123, 158, 174, 177 










158, 159 

Westbrook, Col. Thomas 21 

Whiting 251, 261, 276, 277 

Whitmore 96, 179, 205, 212 

Whitney, Winchester 199 

Whittaker 177 

Whittier 164 

White 147, 153, 160 






145, 263 








126, 160 


132, 137 


31, 32, 

, 36, 130, 

131, 154, 

163, 176 




Page 105 — In the first paragraph should be added the name of 
J. C. Ralph as one of the postmasters of Southwest 

Page 139 — In the second line of the first paragraph the enclos- 
ure (now Mt. Sauveur) should read (now St. Sau- 

Page 165 — In the fourth lin^ of the last paragraph in reference 
to the jiVrivaTa house sold to George E. Street, 
should be added that this house is now owned by- 
Miss Edith Emerson of Cambridge, Mass. 

Page 210 — In the first line of the last paragraph, the name 
"Mrs. Herrick" should read "Mrs. Eaton".