Skip to main content

Full text of "The Varnums of Dracutt (in Massachusetts) a history of George Varnum, his son Samuel who came to Ipswich about 1635, and grandsons Thomas, John and Joseph, who settled in Dracutt, and their descendants"

See other formats


3 3433 08043941 1 



' THE 





George Varnum, his son Samuel who came to Ipswich 


Joseph, who settled in Dracutt, 

AND their descendants. 

(romptlc5 from ffamtlp papers an5 ©tficial "Kccor&s 








t5 <■ « ^*yo 

"STJjoae tnljo tio not treaaurc up tijt tncmorg of tjjti'r anttators to not 
lieset&e to be remcmbnttf bg Posterttg. " — edmund burke. 



Preface ------..._ 5 

History of the Family, by Squire Parker Varnum,' 1.S18 9 

Genealogy : 

George Varnl^m' ---.._. 13 

Samxjel Varnum- ----__. k^ 

Thomas Varnum' and his Descendants - - . 23 

John Varnum' and ms Descendants - - - - 43 

Joseph Varnum' and his Descendants - - - 115 

Sketch of George Varnam' ---.__ 13 

Will of George Varnam ------ 14 

Inventory of Estate of George Varnam - - - 15 

Sketch of Samuel Varnum' ---.._ ig 

Deed of Shatsavell- Varnum Purchase, 1664 - - 17 

Transfer of Lan-d to Varnums, 1688-1735 - - . 21 

Sketch of Thomas Varntjm' ------ 28 

Will of Thomas Varnum ------ 29 

Sketch of Samuel Varnusi* ------ 30 

Inventory of Estate of Thomas Varnum' - - - 31 

Sketches of 

Thomas Varnum* --.-.., 34 

Deacon Jerejhah Varnum' - - . - - 35 

Major Atkinson C. Varnum' . - - - - 35 

John Varnum' ------__ 45 

Inventory of Estate of John Varnum - - - 47 


Sketch of Lieut. John Vaenum* - - - - - 51 

Journal of Lieut. John Varntjm* . _ _ _ 54-64 

Will of Lieut. John Varnum' ----- 64-66 

Sketches of 

Jonas Varnum* -.----_. 67 

Abraham Varnum* .--..-- 68 

James Varnum* __--... 70 

Squire Parker Varnum' -__--. 74-78 

Col. James Varnum' ------- 78-82 

Jonas Varnum' -------- 83 

Capt. William Varnum' --.--- gg 

James Varnum' ----._._ 89 

John Varnum' -------- 89 

Hon. John Varnum,' M. C. - - - - - 90-83 

Col. Joseph Varnum^ - . - _ - 118 

First Representative from Dracutt - - - 120 

Colonel of a Troop of Horse . - - - 121 

Bounds of his Farm - - - - - - 123 

Will and Inventory of Estate - - - 124 

Major Joseph Varnum' - - - - - - 126 

Major Samuel Varnum' - - - - - - 130 

John Varnum* --.._--- 132 

Lieut. Ebenezer Varnum' - - - - - - 134 

Bradley Varnum' ------- 137 

Samuel Varnum' - . - - - - - 140 

Biographical Sketch of : 

Gen. James Mitchell Varnum' - - - - 142 

Letter from Gen. Nath'l Greene - - - 146 

Regiment at Siege of Boston, 1775 - . 149 

" " Battle of Long Island, 1776 - 150 

" " " " White Plains, 1776 . 151 


Brigadier General, 1777 152 

At Valley Forge, 1777-78 . . _ . 155 

Resignation, 1779 _..._. 159 

Mansion at East Greenwich - - . . 160 

Visit of Gen. Lafayette, 1778 - - . 161 

Member of Continental Congress - - . 164 

His Ability and Eloquence - _ _ . 165 

Famous Case of Tretitt vs. Weeden - - 166 

His Personal Appearance - - - - - 167 

President R. I. Society of the Cincinnati - 167 

Appointment as U. S. Judge Northwest Territory 170 

His last Letter to his Wife - - . - 174 

His Death and Funeral - - - - . 176 
Biographical Sketch of : 

Hon. Joseph Bradley Varnum' - - - - 184 

Letter to his Son on Farming . - - - 187 

Captain of Trainband at Dracutt, 1770 - - 190 

SIarciied to Reinforce y" Northern Army - 191 

In Rhode Island Engagement . _ - - 192 

Muster Rolls of his Compaioes [note] - 192-188 

Service in Shays' Rebellion - - - - 193 

Military Commissions - - - - - 195 

Election to Congress, 1795 . - - . 195 

Contest over his Election - - - . 196 

Chosen Speaker 10th and 11th Congresses 197-198 

Speeches : On Direct Taxes . - - - 198 

Slavery Questions - - - 199-200 

Judiciary - - - - - 201 

Militia ----- 203-206 

Elected U. S. Senator, 1811 - - - - 207 

Candidate for Governor of Massachusetts, 1811 208 


Speech against Giles Bill - - . _ 209 
President, pko tkm., of Senate - - - 210 
Presiding Oeficek of the Massachusetts Constitu- 
tional Convention of 1820 - - - _ 210 
Remarks on Religious Toleration - - - 212 
Political Commissions - - - - - 213 
Personality - - - - - _ _ 214 
His Death and Funeral - - - - . 217 
Story of Silas Royal, Gen. Varnum's Servant - 218-225 
Sketches of : 

Major Daniel Varnum' - - - - - . 226 

Col. Prescott Varnum' ---... 230 

Gen. Phineas Varnum' - - - - . . 231 

Joseph Butterfield Varnusi' - . - - _ 233 
Joseph Bradley Varnum' - - . . 237-242 

Capt. Jasies Mitchell Varnum' - - . . 244 

Major Jacob Butler Varnum' - - - _ . 246 
Hon. Benjamin Franklin Varnum' - - . 251-256 

Moses Varnum' ----..__ 258 

Justus Bradley Varnuji' - - - - - _ 261 

Dr. James Varnum' ---._.. 262 

Gen. John Varnum' ----... 264 
Hon. Joseph Bradley Varnum, Jr.' - - _ 267-273 

Rev. Joseph Bradley Varnum' - - . _ 280 

Col. Charles Albert Varnltm' 282 

Gen. James Mitchell Varnum* . _ . , 285 



Will of George Varnam, 1G49 ------ 14 

Shatswell-Varnum Purchase, 1664 ----- 17 

Map of Dracutt, 1702, avhen laid oct as a Township, by 

JoNA : Danforth, Surveyor ------ 27 

Silhouette of Thomas Varnum^ - - _ . _ 33 

Portrait of Deacon Jeremiah Varnum' - - _ . 35 

Portrait of Maj. Atkinson C. Varnum' - - - - 36 

Map of Dracutt m 1791, by Frederick French, Surveyor 45 

Powder-horn of Lt. John Varnum* ; Crown-point, 1760 - 50 

Silhouette of Squire Parker Varnum' - - - - 74 

Certii'icate of Stock in Pawtucket Bridge - - - 76 
Silhouette of Col. James Varnum' - . - _ 73 
Invitation to Jonas Varnum,' Survivor, on Laying of Corner- 
stone OF Bunker Hill Monument, 1S26 - - - 84 
Silhouette of Dolly Varnum' of Peacham, Vt. - - 86 
Certificate of Enrollment of Franklin Wyman Varnum' in 

San Francisco Vigilance Committee of 1856 - - 111 
Tombstone of Ruth, Wife of Col. Joseph Varnum' - 117 
The Old Garrison House, Residence of Col. Joseph Var- 
num' - 123 

Portrait of Gen. James Mitchell Varnum' - - - 142 

Punch-bowl presented by Gen. Lafayette to Gen. Varnum 161 

Portrait of Mrs. Molly, Wife of Gen. Joseph Bradley 

Varnum' ---------- I86 

Silhouette of Hitty Varnum' and Daniel Swept - - 182 

Silhouette of Hannah Varnum' and Maj. Ephraui Cobukn 183 

Portrait of Hon. Joseph Bradley Varnum' - . _ 186 

Portrait of Joseph Bradley Varnum' - - - . 237 

Portrait of Benjamin Franklin Varnum' - - - - 251 

;Map of Dracutt, 1830, by Benj. F. Varnum, Surveyor 254 

Portrait of Joseph Bradley Varnum, Jr.' - - - 267 


This work relates only to the history of the Varnnm family since it> 
first representatives came to America, and is testimony merely as to such 
of the name as are descended from George Varnum who with his \\U\ 
Hannah and his children, Hannah and Samuel, settled in Ipswich, Mas- 
sachusetts, about 1635 ; and his grandsons Thomas, John and Joseph, 
who with their fotiier Samuel lived on land in Dracutt, Massachusetts, 
bought by said Samuel in 1664. 

That George Varnum and wife, with their children Samuel and Han- 
nah, came to America from Great Britain is well nigh certain, although 
evidence is lacking as to tlie ship by which they came over or the port 
from which tiicy sailed. It is, however, stated by Mr. Hntton, a well 
recognized English authority on these matters, that many ship lists oi 
that period were incorrectly kept or have since been entirely destroyed 
It is, moreover, well known to all who have investigated the subject, thai 
there are few if any records now extant of departures from the West coas! 
of (jreat Britain at this period, the same having been destroyed in a great 
fire in one of the Government offices where such records were depofitcd. 
There are many reasonable indications that lead to the impression that 
George Varnum and family would naturally iiave sailed from the Western 
coast. While the exact locality in Great Britain, from which the Var- 
nuras emigrated, has not been clearly determined, in a manner satisfactor^ 
even to a family historian, it seems evident that Squire Parker Varnum'f 
statement in his account of the family, that it came from "a hamlet called 
Drawcutt, supposed to be in Wales," cannot be substantiated. 

There is not now, and apparently never was in the 17tli Century, an) 
place by that or any similar name in Wales. There were, however, an( 
still are, a number of places in the centre or near the west of luiglanc' 
bearing the name of Draycott, but careful researches made by the Hon. 
Joseph B. Varnum, of New York, many years ago, and many times since 
by his eon, Gen. James M. Varnum, indicate that the places by thai 

G PREFACE, are cither of comparatively recent origin or of little importance, and 
that none of them have any records of the 17th Century extant. 

Parker Varniiin's suggestion of the Welsh origin of the family possibly 
came from a confounding of the names of Varnum and Farnum. Ralph 
Ffarnum, whose name is of record in Ipswich, January 1640, is recog- 
nized as the progenitor of the Farnums in America. T.1ie name appears 
so written, in the various original documents filed among the Ipswich 
Records, in Salem, Massachusetts, which is an indication the name is 
of AVelsh origin. George Varnum and his son Samuel were freemen of 
Ipswich at the same period as Ralph Ffarnum ; but the former antedated 
the latter some five years, appearing of record in 1635. Although ]>ho- 
nctically the names are similar, they were never actually confounded in 
Ipswich, nor afterwards in Dracutt, where they came into contact. A 
slig'.it difference in the early spelling of the name Varnum appears in 
some cases in the Ipswich Records, where it is written Varnliam or Var- 
nam, but Samuel always signed his name Varnum, as is shown in 1649, 
when he was 30 years old, in his subscription to Maj. Denison's Com- 
mand ; in 1664, in his agreement with John Evered als \Vebb as to pur- 
cliasc of " Drawcutt upon Mirrimack"; in 1676 in his enlistment to serve 
in tlie Narragansett Campaign (King Philip's War), and in 1683 when 
he was 64 years old, in his deposition as to- land in Ipswich. 

As, in the suggestion of Welsh descent, it is possible tliat the family 
tradition as to coming from a place called Dracutt, or Draycott, in Great 
Britain, may have been confounded with the fact that Samuel Varnum's 
domain in Massacluisetts, purcliased by him in 1664 of John Fverod alv. 
Webb, was then described in the Deed as "Drawcutt u])on Mirrimack." 
John Evered is said to have come from a place near or at one of the 
Draycotts in Wiltshire in England, and it is quite possible, if not proba- 
ble, that his neighbors at Dracutt in Massachusetts may have come from 
at or near the same place. 

It is but fair to state that the universal family tradition in the Varnum 
family, for very many years, sustains the view that the original member of 
the family came from a place called Dracot or Draycott in Great Britain. 

Many of the name have been found in Maine, New Hampsliire, Ver- 
mont, New York, Pennsylvania, Kentucky and the West, with whom it 
would have been pleasant to have established a relationship in the follow- 
ing pages ; but in the absence of direct evidence, it would have entailed 


much labor. No attempt therefore has been made to trace connection with 
those of the Varnum name outside of original Dracutt lineage. 

This work proposes only, to relate the story of the original George Var- 
num who settled in America, and his descendants, and recites as to them 
only, the absolute undoubted and well authenticated facts. 

The Publication Committee believe that they are adopting the most 
wise and conservative course, in confining the scope of this work to the 
period from 1635 to 190G, since the substantial accuracy thereof can thus 
be sustained at all points by existing public and family records. 

The Editor will be pleased, however, to receive any corrections or addi- 
tions thereto relating either to the male or female line, and enter upon his 
records, to be embodied in a supplement to this work later, if there be 
sufficient demand therefor. 

John M. Varnum, of Boston, 
James M. Varnum, of New York, 

Publication Committee. 



[Written by Squire Pabker Varnum, fifth in descent from George the father of Samuel, 
Feb. 17, 1818, when he was 71 years of age.] 

Samuel Vaksum married Sarah Langton, and removed 
from the town or hamlet called Drawcutt (supposed to be in 
Wales) and settled in Ipswich, Essex Co., Mass. He brought 
with him two sons and one daughter.* The sons' names were 
Abraham and Samuel. At Ipswich he had one son whom he 
called Thomas. 

He removed afterwards to Chelmsford on the Merrimack 
River (where the Howards live) , there being a garrison there 
on account of the Indians. He had purchased land on the 
North side of the River, which was called Drawcutt (in Chelms- 
ford) and turned his cattle over to graze. One morning in 
crossing the river in a boat with two of his sons and his daugh- 
ter, to milk the cows, with a squad of soldiers, the Indians 
fired upon them as the boat struck the shore, and killed the two 
eons who were at the oars. One fell back into his sister's lap 
as she was sitting behind him. The soldiers were so alarmed 
as not to fire until called upon by the father who fired and 
called out " Do not let dead men be at the oars." They were 

• This is an error. Samuel Varnura was born about 1619, since, according to his deposi- 
tion made in 1683 (j. v.) he was 6-t years old. lie with his father and mother and sister 
Hannah landed in Ipswich about 1635. This makes him to have been 16 years old. He mar- 
ried Sarah Langton of Ipswich somewhere about 1645. 


buried in Howard's field near the river. The Indians fled, and 
it was uncertain whether any of them were killed or not.* 

Some time after a treaty was made with the Indians and the 
said Varnum settled on his lands in Draweutt being the first 

About that time a Colburn family came and settled near him.f 
Soon after he (Samuel) had a son born unto him whom he called 
John, and who was the first white child born on the North side 
of the Merrimack Iliver above Haverhill (Oct. 15, 1669) . The 
Indians came and assisted the mother (there being no white 
joerson near) and dressed the child in their manner with wam- 
pmn and called it their " Little White King " and " pappoose," 
and sung and danced with the child in their arms, playing upon 
instruments like jewsharps. 

Afterwards he had another son whom he called Joseph. 

The three brothers (Thomas, John and Joseph) settled near 
each other on land which their father purchased. They were 
often alarmed by the Indians, and wars breaking out, they built 
a block house bullet-proof, in which all the settlers assembled 
to sleep. At night, to prevent the Indians coming without 
their knowledge, they planted guns loaded, with lines fixed in 
every direction, so that the enemy could not come near without 
striking some of them so as to fire a gun. One night a horse 

* Accoiding to Hubbard's Indian Wars (p. 154) this was Mar. 18, 1676. His account reads : 
"At Chelmsford the said Wamesit Indians about Mar. IS fell upon some houses at the North 
side of the river, burned down three or four that belonged to Edward Colbourne. The said 
Colbourne with Samuel Varnum, his neighbor, being pursued as they passed over the river to 
look after their cattle on that side of the river and making several shots against them who 
returned the like again upon said Indians, judged to be about 40. What success they had 
upon the Enemy was best known to themselves ; but two of Varnum's sons were slain by the 
Enemy's shot before they could recover the other side of the river." 

t Edward Colbourne, referred to above, wa* one of the early settlers of Ipswich. He pur- 
chased the interest of Richard Shatswell, of Ipswich, who with Samuel Varnum bought the 
1100 acres of land in "Drawcott upon Merrimack" of John Evered, als. Webb. This joint 
interest led to the joining of the families in marriage, his son Ezra marrying the daughter of 
Samuel, and thus down to the present, the Dracutt Varuums and Coburns are of commin- 
gled blood. 


was killed by one of the guns. The people heard the hoi-se 
groan and struggle and supposed it to be an Indian and dared 
not go out until morning. 

Thomas, the eldest son of the said Samuel, married a Jewett 
of Ipswich, by whom he had two sons, Samuel and Thomas, 
and four daug-hters. Samuel married a Goodhue, and died in 
the prime of life, leaving one son and four daughters. 

His second son Thomas, who lived with his father, married 
Sarah Colburn and died about one year after, leaving one son 
who was named Thomas. He inherited his father's estate and 
married Mary Atkinson, by whom he had five sons and four 
daughters, and died in the year 1805, aged 57 rears. Marv, 
his wife, died Feb. 10, 1818, aged S'J years. Their childi-en all 
live upon the land that was their great great grandfather's. 

John, the son born in Draweott, mai-ried Dorothy Prescott 
of Gi'oton, by whom he had four sons and three daughters. 
He died at about 46 years of age. The sons wei-e John, Abra- 
ham, Jonas and James, of whom the first two settled in Draw- 
eott. Jonas settled in Pepi)erell, James in Chester, N". H., all 
having posterity. John was one of Capt. Lovewell's men on 
his first excursion to the Northward of Winipisokee pond in 
Winter on snow shoes, carrying their provisions on their backs. 
(In their march they found a bear, by the help of their dog, 
denned in a large hollow tree, which they killed ; but were 
unable to get him out at the place where he had entered as he 
had grown so fat. In a few minutes they were roasting and 
eating him. He was very delicate). They met a party of 
nine Indians and a boy at said pond, whom thoy attacked and 
scalped. This happened the 20th day of Febriuiry, 172-1. 
They got into Dover the 24th.* 

• See Cnpt. LoveweU's Journal of the trip, also a list of the members of his party in 
which appears the name of John Varnum. The expedition started Jan. 27, 172J, and rctiirned 
liar. 10, 1724. N. E. Gen. Reg., 18.53, p. 62. 


They tlien marched to Andover and were there entertained 
by Joseph Parker. It was there John Varnum first met Phcsbe 
Parker, whom he afterwards married and by whom he had thir- 
teen children. 

The said John Varnnm died suddenly on the 26th day of 
July, 1785, aged eighty years and five months. The said 
Phcebe died the 31st ol Jan., 1786, aged 74 years. Their first 
four children were daughters. Phcebe mari-ied Benjamin 
Poor; Lydia, Jacob Tyler; Susanna, Ebenezer Poor; Hannah, 
Benjamin Stevens, all of Andover. John, the first son, died of 
a fever at Crown Point in the year 1760, aged 21 years and 7 
months, he being a Lieut, in the army in the war between the 
French and the English. 

Dolly married Peter Cobuni of Dracutt. They had one eon, 
the mother dying soon after. 

The other daughters died young. Parker, the second son, 
married Dorcas Brown, of Tewksbury, and lived with his par- 
ents on the same land that had descended from his great-great- 
grandparents. The said Dorcas bore him 15 children and died 
on the 29th of April, 1800, aged 46 years. About 19 months 
after the death of his first wife, Parker Varnum married Abiah 
Osgood, of Andover, who was ]0 months younger than him- 

James, the third son of said John Varnum, married Prudence 
Hildreth, of Dracutt, who died soon after, leaving one daugh- 
ter. He lived seventeen years a widower, and then married 
Eleanor Bridges of Andover. By her he had two daughters; 
one died young, the other is now living (1818). After their 
'.nother's death he married widow Martha Adams, of Green- 
field, IS". H. The said James was five years in the Revolution- 
ary War, four years as Capt. and afterwards as Colonel in the 

Peter, the fourth son of the said John Varnum, died when 


about four years old. Jonas, the fifth eon, married Polly Parker, 
of Dracutt, a grandaughter of the late Key. Thomas Parker, who 
was the first minister settled in Dracutt. Jonas has three sons 
and one daughter now living. 

Joseph, the third son of Samuel Varnum, was born Mar. 15, 
1672. He married Ruth Jewett, of Rowley. He was wounded 
by the Indians, shot through the bowels; his gall came out, 
and part of it was cut ofi", but he lived to be old.* He had three 
sons, Joseph, Samuel and John. All three settled in Dracutt. 
The father, Joseph Varnum, was Colonel of a troop of horse, 
and his two sons, Samuel and Joseph, were his Majors. 

His eldest son, Maj. Joseph, was thrice married: to Rachel 
Goodhue; to Abiah Mitchell, of Haverhill, and finally to the 
widow Burns. By his second wife he had three sons: Brad- 
ley, Joseph and Ebenezer. The Hon. Joseph Bradley Varnum 
(Son of Samuel), for many years a member of the House of 
Representatives in Congress, and for many sessions its speaker, 
and Major Gen'l of the third division of the Massachusetts 
Militia, is a descendant of this branch of the family. f 

1. George Varxham was among the earliest settlers of Ips- 
wich, Massachusetts. He came over from England among the 
Puritan emigrants who early settled Salem and Ipswich, who 
are distinguished from the Pilgrims who settled at Plymouth. 
With him came his wife Hannah and their children, Samuel and 

• ''A company returning from ye old meadows in Dracutt were wnylnid and fired upon 
by the Indians at the fordwaj-, which is now called " Old Meadow Bridge." A tradition has 
it that some were killed and some wounded. One Joseph Varnum was pierced by several 
balls. Part of his caul came out and was taken off; yet he recovered and lived many years." 

[Reminiscences of Dracutt in Lowell Citizen, 1859.] 

f The Compiler of these records takes this occasion to acknowledge gratefully his obliga- 
tion to the memory of Squire Parker Varnum, the author of the above account, and to bear 
testimony to its remarkable accuracy. The following pages will show how research among 
the archives of the State of Massachusetts, as well as family records, has fortified every state- 
ment of his narrative. Without its invaluable aid this Varnum history might not have been 
successfully accomplished. 


Hannah, both young, Samuel being about 16, and Hannah 
being next in age. 

The first record of his name appears in the Ipswich Town 
records in 1635. " Granted Phillip Fowler* — Likewise 6 acres 
planting grounds on the hill next the toAvn, having Christopher 
Osgood towards the north-west, and George Yarnham south- 
east." Also in 1636 " Granted Phillip Fowler — also 6 acres 
of planting ground on the north side of the town, having a 
planting lot of George Yarnham's on the south-east." Also 
in 1639 " Granted to Yarnham 3 acres of that planting ground 
formerly Mr. Bradstreets, and the remainder of it to Jarwell 
Bird, to be laid out by the layers and Mark Symonds." 

Among the files in the Probate office at Salem, written in 
the quaint script of the 17th Century, appears the following 
unsigned " Will of George Yarnum " dated the "21st of the 
2nd month, 1619," which Will was admitted to Probate and an 
inventory filed of his estate: (Book 1, leaf 110.) 

"I, Geoi-ge Varnaui, of Ipswich being in perfect memorye doe orJayne 
this ray last will and testament as followeth : first I give my house and 
barne and land and goods and chattels to my wife for hir life. And after 
hir decease two pts of all my estate to my sonne Samuel Varnam and the 
third part to ray daughter Hannah, to be equally devided. And my 
meaning is, if ray sonne dye without issue, my whole estate is to be re- 
turned to my daughter Hannah, and further so long as she remayne un- 
married, she is to enjoye a chamber in my house, and I doe apoynte 
Thomas Scott and my soun Samuel to be executors." 

He must have passed away shortly after this testament, for 
there is filed "An Inventory of ye goods and chattells of 
George Yarnam of Ipswich, taken the 12th day of the 8th 
month, 1649." 

• Phillip Fowler b. in England in 1590. Came to New England in 1634 in the " Mary 4 
John" and settled in Ipswich. Died 24 June, 1678. 


^ 1^ W" ? 

^t^^ ^ ' 









■ 15 




• 16 


• 16 

1 - 




87£ 7 


7£ lis. 

Imprimis, Halfe tlie dwelling house and bame and all 

the ground 
Three cowes 
Two oxen and a Shote 

Halfe a cart a cheanc a yoke and a half'e a share 
Four jjewter dishes, a fwiing pan and the tramells 
For boding and some of his clothes and other thinsra 
For iron and chaines and other things 
For a mortar a cheane and other thinors 
For a matlock meale salt and other things 
Seed Corne 

Debts owing to several men to the value of 

There appears in Ipswich-Salera records, Vol. V, p. 76, the 
following Deed of conveyance: 

''This witnesseth that I, Thomas French, of Ipswich, tailor, for and in 
consideration of 5 £ by me received have sould unto George Varnham 
ten acres of upland ground at Reedy marsh lying between the land of Mr. 
John Whittingham, Robert Day and Goodman Pearley 

In witness whereof I have to these presents set my hand the 1st of 
April, 1647." 

This property is mentioned in conveyances 1st day of lOth 
month, 1647 (V, 104), 28th Feb'y, 1653 (ii., p. 40) 16th May, 
1644 (Y. 144), and also referred to in deeds as bounding pro- 
perty belonging to Samuel Varnum, 3d Sept., 1652 (ii., p. 89), 
4th Jan., 1663 (ii., p. 335), 29th May, 1665 (ii., p. 440), and 
as late Samuel Yarnum's land, 12th June, 1665. (Salem Re- 

The Eastern Branch Boston & Maine R. R. now runs through 
this property. 

1. George Yarxibi died in Ipswich in 1649. Wife Han- 
nah, no date of death. 


Two children: 

2. i. Samuel, b. about 1619; m. Sarah Langton. 
ii. Hannah. 

2. Samuel Vakntum, whose name so spelled, appears in the 
Ipswich Town Records in Sept., 1649, " in a list of those that 
did subscribe to allow Maj. Denison those several sums yearly 
while he continues to be our leader, Samuel Yarnum 3s." 

He also appears in said records: 

" 4 March, 1650. Ordered that John Gage and Robert Lord shall laye 
out a highwaye to the marsh of Samuel Varnum, John Moss, and Roger 

He was born about 1619. He makes this deposition, record- 
ed in Ipswich Records, Salem, Vol. V, p. 14: 

"The testimony of Samuel Varnum, aged 64 years. This deponent 
Testifieth and sayeth the Land in possession of Nehemiah Jewett which 
the said Jewett's father bought of Mr. Paine was land layed out by my 
Father being Twelve acres, part of it an Island made with ^Egypt River 
and a swamp being Rocky Island, to Mr. Robert Paine, soon after my 
father deceased and the said land I improved quietly and peaceably by 
Felling and cutting timber of the same, and I never knew of any common 
being left between it and the river, nor ever was interrupted in the peace- 
able use of it, nor my father before me. 

Sworn in Court, Ipswich, 25th Sept., 1683. 

Ordered to be recorded. John Appleton, Recorder. 

Samuel Varnum's name with 30 others appears in a peti- 
tion " to the Honored Generall Court at Boston" as to the Vo- 
ting Rights of Freemen. Ipswich May ye 11, 1^8. Mass. 
Archives, Vol. 112, pp. 102; 104. 

Assuming that his father, George Varnum, landed in Ips- 
wich in 1635, which is the first date where he appears of record, 
Samuel, at that date, must have been a lad of 16 years, and 

Z) , A C R A l\1 A/o 2. 

'The Old Manse, the home of Revd Nathaniel Rogers, pastor of the 1st Church, it r 

the site of the lot sold by Samuel Varnum, Sen., to Edward Dean, with 

a house, April 8, 1665. (Ipswich Deeds 2, 245)." 

Taktn hy (he PrrmUtim of Her. T. AV.m* Halert, auHor, frimt 
" Ipttcich in the MiHiKarhii leiai Hay Ctjony." 










°^..?''^ ^'-.. 








-a/"^^-^. ■■■- . 









The Shatswell-Varnum Purchase, 1664 

From original plat drawn by Jona. Danfortk, Surveyor 
la possession of John M. Varnum 


therefore unmarried. It is probable that his wife, Sarah Lang- 
ton, was of Ipswich, from which town his two sons selected 
their wives, and related to the Langtons there. Mention is 
made in " Will of William Nevill, single man of Ipswich, 
proved 7th Month, 1643," who devises to Goodie, Mary, Jo- 
seph and Sarah Langton, and Koger Langton is appointed 
" my only executor and overseer." (Ipswich Deeds, I, leaf 5.) 
In Inventory made 14th January, 1671, of estate of Koger 
Langton,* Samuel Varnum's name appears as a party interested 
in the distribution. It is therefore confidently asserted that 
the aforesaid Sarah was the daughter of Roger and Goodie 
Langton, of Ipswich. 

In 1664, he with his three surviving sons, George, Samuel, 
Thomas, and daughter Hannah, born in Ipswich, having lost a 
son Abraham the same year, removed to Chelmsford (now a 
part of Lowell), having, together with Richard Shatswell, also 
of Ipswich, bought a tract of land of John Evered als. Webb, 
being his estate of " Drawcutt upon the Merrimack." This 
was across the river from what is now known as Middlesex 
Village. The recorded deed in Middlesex Registry of Deeds, 
East Cambi-idge, has the caption " Articles of agreement made 
the 10th day of January in the year of our Lord according to 
the computation of England One thousand six hundred and 
sixty foure, between John Evered, als. Webb, of Drawcutt 
upon Mirrimack, in the county of Norfolk,! in New England, 

• Hammett " Ipswich Families " says " Roger Langton took the freemans oath at Boston 
Mar. 4 : 1634-5 when his name was spelled Lankton. He was a Commoner in 164 1 and 8 
subscriber (with his son Joseph) to Maj ; Dennison's compensation in 1648. He possessed 
a home in Brook street in 1656." 

tThe County of Norfolk was established 10 May, 1643, and included territory north of the 
Merrimack, unknown Dracutt being then "ye wilderness," and certain New Hampshire 
towns, which needed protection from the Bay State Colony. The following named towns 
made up said County up to 1C80 : Salisbury, Haverhill (now in Essex Co.,) Mass. ; Hampton, 
Exeter, Dover and Strawberry Bank (now Portsmouth), New Hampshire. 


Gentlemen of the one party, and Richard Shatswell,* of Ips- 
wich, in the county of Essex, yeomn, and Samuel Varnum, of 
Ipswich aforesaid yeomn of the other part." — The consider- 
ation being " the sum of foure hundi-ed pounds of Lawful 
money of and in New England, to be paid in man and forme 
following: Two third parts of the value of said sums of foure 
hundred pounds in Wheate, Mault or Pease, and the other third 
part in beefe, porke or Indian corne in equal apportions, and in 
defect of porke to be paid in wheate or malte, and in defect of 
any or all of the said payment to be payd in merchantable fish 
current price of Xew England.'' Said payments to be " 1-3 in 
yeare lUOo, 1-8 in 1666, and 1-3 in 1667," the conveyance being 
the " moyty of one halfe of the farme of Drawcutt aforesaid." 
" The true intent and meaning thereof so that the moyty of one 
halfe of said farm is to containe by estimation eleven hundred 
acres at least." 

According to Release recorded at East Cambridge, Samuel 
Varnum fully completed and satisfied his part of the agree- 
ment aforesaid by the 20th of May, 1668. 

John Webb (1643) of Boston was admitted to the Church 
9th of Feb., 1634, when he was called a single man. He prob- 
ably went home soon after, and retui-ned to America, 3d of 
June, 1635. He was a husbandman said to be from Marlbo- 
rough, Wiltshire, England, and had an alias Evered probably 
to elude the tyrannical formalities. 

He was a freeman 7th Dec, 1636, and became one of the 
early settlers of Chelmsford. He was ensign of a military 
company there and represented that town at the General Court 
in 1663-4-5. In the year 1665 he was expelled and disfran- 
chised for a season, but was soon restored and had a grant of 

» Richurd Shatswell was born in England, and came over with his father in 1633 to Ips- 
wich, Mass. He later exchanged his Draeut properties for those of Edward Coburn in Ips- 
wich, and thereafter does not appear as a resident on the Merrimack. — (Geo. A. Gordon.) 


land. He was at Drawcutt in 1664, at which time he had the 
office of Captain. Kev. Sam' 1 Danforth says " 17th, 8th month, 
'68, John Webb Alias Evercd pnrsning a whale was canght in 
ye rope twisted abont his middle, and being drawn into the sea 
was drowned." He once owned the site of " the Old Corner 
Bookstore," in Boston. (Hist. A. & H. Artillery Co., 1896.) 

That Samuel Varnum resided on the Chelmsford side of the 
river for sometime after his purchase of Drawcutt, on account 
of there being a garrison there for protection against the hos- 
tile Indians, appears from the Parker Varnum narrative. His 
children, John (1669), and Joseph (1672), were probably born 
there, as the two elder brothers wci'c killed several years later 
(1676) while crossing the river to milk the cows in Di'awcutt. 
Moreover, Samuel Yarnum appears in the ministers' rates 80th 
of Mar. 1671 (oi'iginal Chelmsford Records, p. 107), as the 
enactment of the Hrst General Court, 19ih of Oct., 1630, set 
forth that " only those who belonged to some Church in the 
Colony should be made freemen and admitted to the freedom 
of the body-politic," and paid his tithes to that town. 

Like all other settlers of New England of that day, his hand 
was against the red man. He enlisted in the famous camj^aign 
against King rhillip, and is credited in the accounts of the 
Colonial Treasurer, John Hull, 24th of April, 1676, for mili- 
tary services under Capt. Nicholas Manning, of Ipswich, in the 
Narragansett Campaign (King Philli]) War) £2. It was in 
Mai-., 1676, he lost his two eldest sons, George and Samuel, 
who were fired upon by the Indians, and undoubtedly he was 
ready to avenge their deaths in a war which was destined to 
break forever the Indian power throughout New England. 

Sergt. Samuel Vai'nnm's name appeai-s with ten men in an 
old document owned by the N. II. Historical Society, probably 
presented by the late John Farmer, as of garrison in the West 
Eeg't of Middlesex 1691-2. (N. E. Hist, and Gen. Register, 
Vol. 43, p. 370.) 


No record can be found of the deaths of Samuel Varnum 
nor his wife. In the Middlesex Records of Deeds, l-tth of 
Jan., 1698, there appears a conveyance " of all my visable es- 
tate lands & movables " to his sons Thomas, John and Joseph, 
in which his wife joins. He was then 79 years of age. He 
was a subscriber to the petition to the General Court in 1702 
for authority to lay out the town of Dracutt, at which date he 
was 83 years old. 

Maj. Atkinson C. Yarnum in his article on " The last resting 
place of the eaily settlers of Dracutt " states that Samuel Yar- 
num and his wife, Sarah Langton, were " probably buried in 
a little cemetery about a mile and a half from Pawtucket 
Bridge, between Yarnum Ave. and the Boulevard," but that 
from the scarcity of monumental stone in those days, their 
graves were not marked. Here also, was buried the Rev. 
Thomas Parker, the first minister of Dracutt. The cemetery 
is now (1906) neglected and abandoned, but some headstones 
are still standing. 

The Deed of Conveyance of the 14th of Nov., 1698, was 
probably executed by Samuel Yarnum in lieu of a Will. In 
it he conveys to his sons Thomas, John and Joseph, " all my 
visible Estate, Land and moveables." 

2. Samuel Yaesttm {George^), bom in England about 
1619, married Sarah, daughter of Roger and Goodie Langton, 
of Ipswich. 

Seven children: 
i. ) George and Samuel, b. in Ipswich. Killed by Indians 18th of 
>]\Iar., 1676, and buried near Merrimack River, opposite land of 
ii. 3 rhomas Varnum. 

iii. Abraham, b. 28th of Oct., 1659, in Ipswich; d. Apr. 3, 1660. 
iv. Hannah, b. 22d of May, 1661, in Ipswich. " Ezra, son of Edw. 
Colbum, and Hannah, daughter of Samuel Varnum, entered 


into a covenant of marriage 22d, 9th month, 1681, before 
Samuel Adams Commr." He was born in Ipswich, 16 INIarch, 
1657-8. The Edw. Colburn mentioned, purchased the inter- 
est of Kichard Shatswell in the Evered-Webb purchase. He 
came in the " Defence " from London, 6 July, 1635, aged 17, 
and settled in Ipswich and later in Drawcott. He died 17 
Feb., 1700. (Geo. A. Gordon.) 
Six children (Colburn), 1706 : 

Ezra, b. 1682, m. Lucy Nelson. 

Samuel, b. 18 Sept., 1684; m. 1711, Mary Kichardson. 

Abraham, b. 7 Aug., 16!S7. 

John, b. 15 Apr., 1690. 

Hannah, b. 14 Aug., 1695. 

Sarah, b. 10 Apr., 1699. 

3. V. Thomas, b. 19th Nov., 1662, at Ipswich, m. Joanna Jewett. 

4. vi. John, b. 15th Oct., 1669, at Chelmsford, m. Dorothy Prescott. 

5. vii. Joseph, b. 15tlj Mar., 1672, at Chelmsford, m. (1) Ruth Jew- 

ett, (2) Mary Barron. 

The early records of Middlesex Co. at East Cambridge con- 
tain many transfers of land to and between the Yarnum Broth- 
ers, Thomas, John and Joseph. 

As they held much land in common, mention is made of only 
such parcels as were conveyed to them in severalty. 

30th Nov., 1G89, in ye first year of their Majesties' reign, King- 
William and Queen Mary, Thomas Kii hardson, of Drawcutl, 
conveys to Samuel Yarnum 8 acres of land lying on ye North 
side of ye Merrimack Kiver, part of mcddow land which was 
sometime in ye possession of Capt. John Evcred als. "Webb. 
Consideration 8 £ sterling in a very good and substantial horse. 

18th Mar. 1602, Elizabeth relict of Capt. AVm. Bond, of 
"VVatertown, conveys to Thomas, John and Joseph Yarnum 
6 acres of land at bubble Brook. Consideration 30 £, lawful 
money of New England. 

7th Nov., 1693, John Kidder, of Chelmsford, joyner, for and 
in consideration of six bushels of good merchantable Indian 


Corn, well and truly paid by John Yarnum, of Chelmsford, 
conveys 500 acres of land on ye North side of ye Merrimack 
River at a place called by ye name of Pautuecott Falls. 

17th July, 1696, Peter Proctor and Joseph Hides convey to 
Thomas and Joseph Yarnum a tract of land situate lying and 
being on ye North side Merrimack alias Moremack Kiver be- 
longing to "Wamaset Rock, sometime since purchased by Procter 
and Hides with others of ye Inhabitants of Chelmsford afore- 
said, of ye natives of ye Country. 

25th Nov., 1698, Thomas, John and Josejih, sons of Samuel 
Yarnum, and Thomas, Daniel, Ezra and Joseph Coleburn, 
sons of Edward Coleburn, divide lands. " 

1st Nov., 1699, Thomas, John and Joseph Yarnum divide 
"all that his mansion house, Tillage, Pasture and meddow 
ground purchased on the North side of the Merrimack River, 
our honoured father did convey to us." To Joseph was as- 
signed the ujiper division; to Thomas the middle; and to John, 
the lower. 

16th Sept., 1703, " In the second year of ye Reign of our 
Sovereign Lady Anne, Queen of England, Scotland, France 
and Ireland, Defender of the Faith," Capt. John Bowers, of 
Chelmsford, conveys to Thomas, John and Joseph Yarnum 28 
shares of the fifty parts of the 500 acres of land commonly 
called ye Waraasett Purchase, bounded partly on Merrimack 
River on ye South and Beaver Brook on ye East. 

5th May, 1704, Thomas, John and Joseph Yarnum acquire 
the remaining shares of the Wamasett Purchase of Ensign 
William Fletcher and others, of Chelmsford. 

15th Sept., 1710, Richard Mills conveys to Thomas, John 
and Joseph a tract of land in ye wilderness containing 200 
acres on the North side of ye Merrimack River, about 7 or 8 
miles from the River within ye town of Di-awcutt, bounded 
Westerly by Beaver Brook, Golden Brook running through 
said tract. 


4th Mar., 1711, Joseph Varnum and Ri;th, his beloved wife, 
conveys to John Yarnum the thii-d part of 340 acres, being 
undivided lands lying on ye North side of ye Merrimack River 
bounded by ye River on the South, and Capt. Sewell on ye 
West, and on ye Xorth by Long Pond, and on ye Coleburne's 
farme on ye East and South-east so to ye River. 

29th July, 1712, Joseph Varnum conveys to Thomas Yar- 
num, husbandman, 50 acres, a tract of land lying on the North 
side of the Merrimack River, formerly called the Indian lands 
lying at Pawtuckct upper falls. 

29th July, 1712, Agreement between Thomas, John and 
Joseph to divide lands purchased by our father, Samuel Yar- 
num, Capt. Webb and Thomas Richardson, lying at place 
called the old meddow on ye South side of ye Brook, which is 
called the Old Meddow Brook, which Brook runs by the side 
of a great Spring in ye Meddow above named. 

29th Oct., 1713, Thomas and John Yarnum convey to Joseph 
a tract of land that lyeth on the jSTorth side of ye Merrimack 
Rivei- in a place called the 500 acres of Indian lands formerly 
bounded on Joseph Yamum's farm on the West, and 2/3 part 
of all ye lands between ye former farm mentioned on ye West, 
and Beaver Brook on the East and JSTorth excepting one hun- 
dred part of the 500 acres of Indian land that John Coleburn 
sold to Joseph Yarnum, and bounded on ye South by Josepli 
Yarnum's land, reserving to Thomas and John Yarnum 2/3 
parts in thirds of all the privileges for mill or mills on Beaver 
Brook and mill dams or mill ponds and log yards, board yards 
and mill houses, digging gravel as much as is needful, and 
teames to carry boards or loggs, whatsoever is needful in the 
management of the mill. 

7th Oct., 1714, Joseph Yarnum to Samuel BroAvn of Salem 
mtge. for 50 £. Satisfaction and i-elease 2d Mar., 1720. 



13th June, 1735, Heury Colburn, of Dracutt, conveys to 
John Varnum of same, 1/73 of the township granted to Jere 
Perley, John Britt and their associates by the Great and Gene- 
ral Court 1733 to Capt. Lovewell and Capt. White, being lot 
26 in the 300 township, which lies Northwesterly from Rut- 
laud. (Worcester Records.) 


Dracutt, 1702 

Laid out by yona. Danforth, Surveyor 
From original plan in possession of yohn M. Varnum 

ij ^,„WZ~ -^^i^f^ sf-"^^v^ 

>- > ' • '77/ ^ '^'■^csTf^ ^::/<^/w<fr,^ 


3. Thomas' Varnum (Samuel,'' George'), b. 19th Nov., 
16G2, d. 7th Sept., 1739, m. 10th Nov., 1G97, Joanna, clau. of 
Nehemiah and Exercise (rierce) Jewett, of Ipswich, who was 
first cousin to Ruth Jewett, who married his brother Joseph. 
She was b. 8th May, 1677, bapt. 3d June, 1677, d. 6th April, 

Eleven Children: 

i. Joanna,* b. 5 March, 1699, m. Jacob Colburn, of Dracutt. 
Five Children (Colburn) : 
Daniel, b. 18 Mar., 1722. 
Joanna, b. 30 Sept., 1724. 
Mary, b. 7 Aug., 1726. 
Jacob, b. 10 Feb., 1729. 
Thomas, b. 2 June, 1731. 
ii. Mercy, b. 17 April, 1702, d. 178,5; m. (Int.) 9 Dec, 1722, 
Aaron Colburn, b. 27 May, 1700, d. 24 Feb., 1745. 
Four Children (Colburn) : 

Hannah, b. 22 Mar., 1724; m. Wm. Foster, of Chelms- 
Deborah, b. 24 Sept., 1727; m. (1) Daniel Colburn, (2) 

Timo : Colburn, of Dracutt. 
Aaron, b. 6 Mar., 1731 ; m. Phebe Harris. 

Eleazer, b. 4 Mar., 1735 ; m. Hildreth. Eleazer's 

sons went to the Kennebec region of Maine, and settled 
in Canaan, now Skowhegan, where they have mightily 
proHi)ered. Some have gone to Congress, and one was 
the ■\\'ar Gov. of Maine and died the wealthiest citizen 
of the State. (Geo. A. Gordon.) 

4. iii. Samuel, b. 16 June, 1704 ; m. Mary Goodliue. 

iv. Mary, b. 28 June, 1706 ; m. Ebenezer Cummings, of Notting- 
V. Sarah, b. 9 Jan,, 1709; m. Josiah Richardson, of Dracutt. 


vi. Mehitable, b. 29 :\lar., 1711; m. Xathan Proctor, of West- 
ford. She (1. 20th Jan., 1760. No issue. 

vii. Jane, b. Apr., 1713. 

viii. Hannah, b. 31 ^lar., 1715, d. in infancy. 
5. ix. Thomas, b. 12 Mar., 1716/17; m. Sarah Colburn 4th. 

X. Hannah, 1). 21 Sept., 1719; m. Ezekiel Hills, of Nottingham 

xi. Esther, b. 17 March, 1722. 

Thomas Yarnusi was bom in Ipswich shortly before his 
parents removed to Chehnsford. At the time of the slaughter 
of his two elder brothers, he was a lad of 14 years, and his 
sister Hannah, into whose lap sank one of the brothers when 
shot by the Indians, about IG. 

He was married when 35 years old, going back to Ipswich 
for his wife Joanna, 15 years his junioi'. She was the daugh- 
ter of Nehemiah Jewett, "a man veiy prominent in the affairs 
of Essex County, most of the Wills of the townsmen from 1675 
up to the time of his death (1720), were drawn by him." It is 
probable that the 11 children of Thomas and Joanna were born 
at " Drawcutt on Mirrimack," as shortly after his marriage, 
the town was laid out and its inhabitants had united in com- 
mon defense. He became a husbandman, and settled on the 
land given by his father in his old age to his sous, who later 
made a friendly division among themselves. To Thomas, the 
eldest, was allotted the homestead and lands lying near to the 
banks of the river at the upper Pawtucket Falls, still (1906) 
in the hands of his descendants of the same name. The site 
of the original house was discovered many years ago. He 
was Town Clerk 1713 to 1715.* Thomas died in 1739, aged 

• Dracutt April ye llth in the year 1715. At a general! town Meeting it was granted to set 
our Meeting House,' for the Town of Dracutt, on a piece of land near the South side of a hill, 
called by ye name of Flag meddoe hiU on Thomas Varnums land, bounded as foUoweth 
West by'Joseph Varnums land, Xorth by highwaj-, Eastivard by stakes and stones, on the 
South by stakes and stones. And it also is granted one barrell of Cyder and such a quantity 
of Rhum as the trustees shall think it needful for the raising of said Meeting House. 

[Thomas Varuum T C] 


77 years, leaving a will dated 20th Jan., 1737/8. It is filed 
at the East Cambridge Registry of Deeds. It recites that his 
eldest son Samuel, who had married five years before its date, 
having by "a certain Deed of gift received about 200 acres of 
land and Medow of considerable value," "it is my Will that 
he shall have no more of my estate." He gives unto " my 
dearly beloved wife all my household goods of what name or 
denomination soever, Excepting one Bed with furniture for the 
same to my youngest son, Thomas, also one cow and one heifer 
out of my stock of cattle at her own choice, and my white 
faced mare, and that she be allowed the full use and possession 
of one end of my now Dwelling house at her own election and 
choice, and in case my son Thomas should pull down my now 
Dwelling House, and build a new one, then to allow my be- 
loved wife the full use and improvement of one good and com- 
fortable foreroom, and provide her with firewood Winter and 
Summer, and that she have the use and imiirovement of one 
third part of my ploughland set off to her and one third part 
of my orchard." 

To his grandchildren, " The surviving children of my eldest 
daughter, Joanna, •)£ to be divided equally, having given the 
mother of said children 30£ at marriage." To his daughter 
Mercy, wife of Aaron Colburn; Mary, wife of Ebenezer Cum- 
mings; Sarah, Mehitable, Jane, Hannah and Esther what, 
" with sums jji-eviously given, shall make up 33£ each." 

He further wills " that my wife and two youngest daugh- 
ters, Hannah and Esther, be maintained and supported out of 
my estate for the space of one full year from date hereof, and 
that all my flax be improved for the use and benefit of my 
present famil}^ according to the discretion of my wife." 

To his son Thomas he bequeathes " all the ivst of my estate, 
real and personal," and makes him his "sole executor." 

The Will was duly probated Nov. ye 2Gth, 1739. Joanna, 


his wife, certifying " I Do Not Desire that there shold be an 
Inventory Lodged on my accompt." 

4. Samuel Varxum'' {Thomas^ Samuel,^ George^), born 
16th June, 1704; died about 1748; married about 1734, to Mary, 
daughter of Ebenezer, and Mary Goodhue of Dracutt, who 
was born 8 Mar., 1716/17, and died about 1751. She was sister 
to Rachel Goodhue, the first wife of his cousin, Joseph Var- 
num, Jr. 

Five Children: 

i. Nehemiah,' b. Dec, 1735. 

ii. Rachel, b. 11 Feb., 1736-7, 

ill. Mary, b. 28 Jan., 1738-9; m. (int.) 10 Jan., 1778, William 

Harris of Andover. 
iv. Olive, b. 7 Mar., 1740-1; m. Robert Jackson. 
V. Deborah, b. 2 Apr., 1744. 

He was a yeoman, and settled on land deeded him by his 
father, Dec. 11, 1734, the year he was married to Mary Good- 
hue. Pie died at 41 yeai-s of age. Mary, his widow, was ap- 
pointed, June 1748, administratrix of his estate. John Yar- 
num, Ebenezer Colburn and Joseph Varnum appraisers. "Mary 
Varnum, widow, appointed 2d Oct., 1750, guardian of her son 
Nehemiah, a minor about 15 years of age, and son of Samuel 
Vamum, deceased." " Oliver Pierce, yeoman, appointed, 26 
Nov., 1751, administrator of the Estate of Mrs. Mary Varnum, 
late of Chelmsford Deceased intestate." 

The Inventory of the estate of Samuel Varnum, real and 
personal, show that he left " Homestead farme containing, by 
estimation, about 640 acres which was appraised at 900J6." 
And personal property to the value of 403£ 17s, old tenor, 
making a total of 1303£ 17s. (Middlesex Co. Probate Rec- 
ords, East Cambridge.) 

Nothing is known of his son Nehemiah, who is assumed to 
have died young, nor of his daughter's descendants. 

Thomas: fourth geneeatiojt. 31 

5. Thomas^ ( Thomas,^ Samuel.'' George' ) , b. 12 Mar., 1716 ; 
d. 1 Aug., 1748; m. "Sept. ye 19, 1717, Thomas Vanium of 
Dracutt, entered the intention of marriage to Sarah Colburn ye 
4:th of Dracutt with me." (Dracutt T. K.) Josiah Richardson, 
T. C. 

Sarah was the daughter of Deacon Edward and Elizabeth 
(Richardson) Coburn of Dracutt. She was born 17 Sept., 1729. 

One Child: 

6. Thomas,' b. 5 May, 1748; m. Mary Atkinson, 

Thomas Varnum was a farmer on the land devised him by his 
father. He died at 32 years of age, leaving a son of only four 
months, and a widow of only nineteen years of age. 

He left no will, and his widow was appointed administratrix 
of his estate, 20 Dec, 1748, and subsequently guardian of her 

The Inventory of his estate, made Dec. ye 5th, 1748, is m- 
teresting as showing the belongings of a Dracutt farmer of ye 
olden time. 

Imprimis : 

The Real Estate (viz.) ye Lands and Buildings in Dracutt all ap- 
praised in old tenor Bdls of Credit, £28G0 
The Personal Estate as follows : 
(viz) (^uick Stock. 
One Yoak Oxen at 75£ 
Ditto " ♦' 63£ 
One Horse 20£, 3 Cows 66£ 
" Heffer 20£ and one 19£ 
" Calfe 8£ and one 4£ 
Three Sheep 458. ea. 
4 Swine ll£ Ea. 2 Piggs SOs. Ea. 
A Cart Wheel and Irons 14£ 
Sleds 409., ploughs and plough irons 15£ 
A Broad ax 4£ 
Two narrow axes 2£ a hand saw 208. 
































Haifa Bpade 258. a part of a crosscut saw 208. 2- 5- 
Two ox yoaks and Irons 3£ 

A log chain 6£ lOs., a small chain 5£ 5s. 11-15- 

A coller and hames ISs. 0-15- 

A scyth and tackling 208., a shave Ss. 1- 8- 
A Hoe IGs., a pease of square Gs., Betle Rings 
and Wedges 208. 4d., 4 Harrow teeth 358., a 
pitchfork Ss., Shad shovel Ss., Iron Hay 

Hook 6s., Hammer and Gimlet Is., a bel lOs. 4-14- 

A Saddle 10£ Saddle and Bridle 8£ 158. 18-15- 

A firelock 5£ A swoard 4£, a cane £3 12- 0- 

Wearring apparill 93- 8- 
Household goods : one Bed and Bedding 51 

and ditto 32£ 83- 0- 

14 yards of Bed Ticking at 148. 6d. 10-3-0 

Table Linning 10- 0- 

A case of Draws 138. 10 0-13-10 

A ovel Table 5£ a square Table 30s. 6-10- 

A Joint Stove 30s. Two Chests 50s. 4-0-0 

Six Chears GOs. A Spinning Wheel 60s. 6- 0- 

Tubs 2s. Casks 7£ 12 7-14- 

Pewter 5£ Brass 2£ 5 7-5-0 

Iron ware 4£ 7 other Utensils 3 4-3-0 
A Bible 308., A Psalm Book lOs., A pocket 

Case 5s. 2-5-0 

7 yards all wool cloth at 45s. 10-15- 
The crops of Corn, Hay, Apples part geathered 

and part to geather, the whole appraised at 208- 0- 

Cash in old tenor 64- 0- 

A Debt Due from ye Rev'd. Thomas Parker 5- 0- 
A Debt Due from John Coburn 20s., Jabis 
Coburn 208., Robert Lindsay 10s., Caleb 

Parker 6s., Edw. Richardson 40s. 4-16- 
About three years time of Negro boy named 

Jupiter as by Bargain appears 40- 0- 
Making a total of 3863£ 38. 


6. Thomas'* (I'homas* Thomas,^ Samuel,^ George^), b. 5 
May, 1743, d. 1 July, 1805, m. (int.) Mr. Thomas Varnum 
entered with me his intention of marriage with Mrs. Polly At- 
kinson of Pelham. Dracutt 11 Aug. 1781 (T. K., vol. 2, 133). 
She was born 1762: d. 2 Feb. 1813. 

Nine Children: 

i. Mary," b. 11 Nov., 1784; d. 8 Sept., 1859; m. 29 June, 
1813, Lt. Peter, son of Hezekiah Coburn of Dracutt, who 
died in 1825. 

Four Children (Coburn) : 

Robert Parker, b. 6 Oct., 1814; d. 1820. 
Jeremiah Varnum, h. 18 Dec, 1815; d. 1851. 
Peter Sullivan, b. 22 Dec, 1817. 
Fanny W., b. 27 July, 1823 ; m. Robert Mills, 
ii. Hannah, b. 29 Aug., 1786; d. 27 Jan., 1844; m. 3 Nov., 
1807, Timothy, son of Jacob Colburn, b. 29 Aug., 1778, 
d. 14 June, 1819. 

Four Children (Coburn) : 

Czarina, b. 14 Aug., 1808; d. 11 Oct., 1842. 
Timothy Varnum, b. 12 Apr. 1810; d. 19 Apr., 1860. 
Abel, b. 24 Aug., 1816. 
Bartlett, b. 6 July, 1819; d. 18 Aug., 1841. 

7. ill. Thomas, b. 19 Apr., 1788; m. Mary Brown. 

iv. Sarah, b. 21 Oct., 1791; d. 30 Aug., 1853; m. (int.) 10 
Mar., 1810, Charles Bodwell. 
Tliree Children (Bodwell) : 

Mary Varnum, b. 9 Aug., 1810. 
Sarah Ann, b. 11 Jan., 1813. 
Jane, b. 22 Feb., 1815. 
V. Samuel, b. 20 Mar., 1792; d. unm. 7 Feb., 1879. 

8. vi. Jeremiah, b. 10 Mar., 1794, m. JNIehitablc Ford. 

vii. Ednah, b. 21 Feb., 1796 ; d. 1 Feb., 1832 ; m. 23 May, 1822, 
Theo : Hamblett of Dracut. 
Five Children (Hamblett) : 
Daniel Varnum. 



John P. 

viii. Daniel, b. 10 Feb., 1798 ; d. 4 May, 1881, unm. "He was the 
last of a family of nine children, and died in the old ancestral 
home where he and his brother Samuel, who died in 1879, 
aged 87, lived with their eldest brother Thomas, who died in 
ix. Oliver P., b. Mar., 1805; d. unm. 1 Nov., 1839. He was 
a deeply religious man, a fine performer on the violin, which 
he played at ciuirch, regarding it as consecrated to sacred 
music, and none other would he play thereon. 

Thomas Yanium lived and died on the ancestral acres which 
descended from his grandfather Thomas; and lies buried be- 
side his wife in the Woodbine Cemetery, on Varnum Avenue, 
near his home in Di'acntt, now Pawtucketville, Lowell. He 
was a farmer. He was one of the 81 Minute Men, who, under 
Gapt. Stephen Russell, " marched on ye 19th Apr,, 1775 against 
the JSIinisterial Troops." In the same company was his cousin 
Joseph Bradley Varntim. He left no will. His wife was ap- 
pointed administratrix 21 Sept., 1819. His estate was appraised 
by Parker Varnum. James Varnum and Thomas Hovey, 4th 
Oct., 1810, at 15527.90. 

7. Thomas" Var^'UM ( Thomas,^ Tliomas,* Thomas,^ 8am- 
uel," George'), h 29 Apr., 1788; d. 13 Apr., 1857; m. 6 June, 
1822, Mary, dau. of Abel and Marv (Barrett) Brown of Con- 
cord, Mass., born 30 Apr., 1803; died 4 Oct., 1850. 
Five Children: 

i. Mary Ann,' b. 5 Apr., 1823; d. 3 Sept., 1862; m. 9 May, 

1846, Horatio W. Marshall. 
ii. Sarah Atkinson, b. 11 Oct., 1826; m. 25 Dec, 1850, Jona- 
than Bowers, of Dracutt, b. 2 jMar., 1825. 
Four Children (Bowers) : 

Minnie Brown, b. 11 Feb., 1854. 

T H O M 


Deacon Jeremiah Varnum" 


Kittle A., h. 2 Feb., 1857. 

Jonathan, Jr., h. 23 Sept., 1859. 

Gcovfre S., b. 22 Feb., 1861. 
iii. Thomas Barrett, b. 10 Mar., 1825; d. in infancy. 
iv. James Brown, b. 17 Feb., 1832; d. in infancy. 

9. V. Thomas, m. (1) Sarah M. Pierce, (2) Helen A. Allen. 

Thomas Varnum, like those of his name, lived and died on 
the ancestral acres originall}' purchased by Samuel Varnum at 
the Pawtucket upper falls, Dracutt. With him lived and passed 
away his brothers Samuel, Daniel and Oliver, lie was a far- 

8. Jeremiah" {Thomas,^ Thomas,* Thomas,^ Samuel,^ 
George'), b. 10 Mar., 1794; d. 18 April. 187G; m. 5 Mar., 1822, 
Mehitable, dan. of Timothy Ford and Mehitable Rowell his 
wife, of Hudson, N. II., who died 15 Apr., 1890. 

L Mehitable Maria,' b. 5 June, 1823; d. 5 Apr., 1844. 
ii. Priidenee Fonl, b. 20 Sept., 1824; d. 30 June, 1833. 
iii. Jane Coburn, b. 23 May, 1826; d. 15 Jan., 1882; m. Ru- 
fus B. Wliitney. 

One child : Fred A., d. 3 Sept., 1866. 

10. iv. Atkinson Clayton, b. 27 Jan., 1828: m. Mary Jane Abbott. 
V. Ednah Ilamblett, b. 25 Feb., 1831 ; d. unm. 5 Nov., 1866. 
vi. jNIaria Prudence, b. 30 July, 1834; in. 23 Nov., 1856, John 

J. Coburn, 1). 1823; d. 1885. 
vii. Czarina Coburn, b. 13 Dec., 1838; d. 27 July, 1859. 

Jeremiah Varnum was a farmer in Dracutt. lie was chosen 
Elder of the AVest Church of Dracutt (now the Pawtucket 
Congregational of Lowell), 15 Aug., 18:51, and served as an 
Elder nntil Apr., 1859. He was a pronounced Anti-slavery ad- 
vocate, and in 1834: contributed money with oilier Di-acutt men 
in aid of the cause. , 


9. Thomas" (TJio7nas,'' Thomas,^ Thomas* Thomas,^ Sam- 
uel,' George^). A farmer, and lives on the ancestral acres which 
have come down to him unbroken from 1695. m. (1) 2i Dec, 
1857, Sarah M , dau. of C^'rus Pierce and Martha Beals, his 
wife, of AVinehendon, Mass., b. 20 Jnne, 1837; d. 14 Mar., 1891 ; 
no issue; m. (2) 18 Nov., 1896, Helen A., dau. of Alvin B. 
Allen and Sarah Elizabeth Varnum (8th in line descent from 
George Yarnnm), his wife, of Blue Hills, Maine. 
Children : 

i. Mary Elizabeth," b. 28 Apr., 1898. 

ii. Helen, b. 27 Mar., 1900. 

iii. Thomas, b. iO July, 1901. 

10. Atklnsox Clayton Varnum'' (Jeremiah,^ Thomas,^ 
Thomas,* Thomas-' Samuel,'' George'), b. 27 Jan., 1828; d. 
4 May, 1897; m. 23 Aug., 1865, Mary Jane, dau. of Hugh A. 
and Minerva (Cragin) Abbott, of Greeniield, N". H. 

i. Mary Grace,' b. 18 Jan., 1875 ; d. 17 Jan., 1879. 
ii. Harold Abbott, 
iii. Arthur Clayton. 

Atkinson Clayton Varnum was born in Dracut, Mass., 
Jannary 27, 1828. His patei-nal ancestors were all born in 
Dracut. His father, Jeremiah Varnum, was an industrious, 
pros|)erous farmer, an aqtive, useful citizen, and respected by 
all who knew him, especially for his strict moral and religious 
principles. He was a lineal descendant of Samuel Varnum 
who came from Drawcutt, England, about 1635, and settled 
first in Ipswich, Mass., and subsequently removed to that part 
of Chelmsford afterwards caFled Middlesex Village, now a part 
of Lowell, finally bought land on the o^jposite side of the Mer- 
rimack River and settled upon it and called the place Draw- 
cutt from his native town across the sea, he being the first 

Maj. Atkinson C. ^■ARNUM' 



This land descended through the several generations, and 
the share that came to Samuel's great, great-grandson, Jere- 
miah Varnum, formed a part of the fai'm upon which he passed 
his life, and a part of which still remains in the family. Jere- 
miah Varnum was a son of Thomas, the third in descent of 
that name from Samuel. Thomas, the grandfather of Atkinson 
C., was a minute-man at the beginning of the Revolution, and 
marched from Dracut to Concord and Lexington in Capt. 
Stephen Kussell's Company in 1775. 

Jeremiah Varnum married Mehitable Ford, daughter of 
Timothy Ford of Hudson, N. H., March 5th, 1822, and seven 
children were the result of the marriage, — one son and six 

Atkinson C, the only son, and the subject of this sketch, was 
in early life trained to the laborious but healthful duties jjer- 
taining to general farming and fruit raising. He was educated 
m the public schools of Dracut, Pembroke, N. H., Academy, 
Brown University, and Harvard Law School. While studying 
he taught winter schools (as many other students did) as a 
supplement to needed funds. 

In 1856 he entered the law office of the lions. Daniel S. and 
William A. Richardson in Lowell, where he remained until the 
autumn of 1859, when he was admitted to the Bar on motion 
of one of his masters, Hon. Daniel S. Richardson. He then 
formed a copartnership with Hon. John A. Ivnowles, then a 
practising lawyer in Lowell, and President of the Appleton 
Bank. This partnership was continued — with an interruption 
during a part of the war of the Rebellion — some ten years. 

He was a member of the Legislature from the 25th District, 
which included the towns of Dracut, Chelmsford and Tyngs- 
boro, in 1863 and 1864. During the Civil War he served the 
Government as one of its disbursing officers, being appointed 
by President Lincoln, Paymaster in the Army with the rank of 


Major. He remained in this position several months after the 
close of the war, paying troops that were gradually relieved 
and discharged from outposts where tardy submission to Fed- 
eral authority made military service a prolonged necessity. 

Upon entering the army he was stationed at Washington for 
a considerable time, and had occasional opportunities of con- 
versing upon official business and otherwise with President 
Lincoln, of whom he was a great admirer, not only on account 
of his profound wisdom and honesty as a statesman, but for his 
gentle and unassuming manner, and patience with those who 
came before him. Mr. Yarnum often remarked that only upon 
one occasion did he ever see the President in a state of mind 
even suggesting severity. It was at a time when the war was 
at its height, and its cloud hung heaviest over the country. 
This particular day was one of the times when he allowed him- 
self to be seen and consulted by everybody — first by officials, 
cabinet officers, members of Congress, and afterwards by citi- 
zens, whether of high or low degree; but those who wished to 
speak to him were supposed to have business of importance, 
and they were all obliged to fall into line and await their " turn." 
Mr. Yarnum said, " My business, which pertained to military 
aflfairs, seemed to me important, and I thought I could not 
wait for a more favorable day, and so I fell into line with a 
great crowd of promiscuous people, and waited my turn. As 
I drew near and could hear the conversation between the Presi- 
dent and the various individuals who approached him, I thought 
his demeanor was so different from what I had seen it before, 
that I felt sorry that I was in the line, and thought of retiring, 
fearing he might put the very pertinent enquiry — why I could 
not have taken some otheV occasion. But finding that those 
who preceded me were mostly office seekers, I concluded to 
run the gauntlet and go through, as I did not wish for an office 
or favor of any kind. Of course, in order ever to be rid of 


such a surging crowd he had to make short work with most of 
them, though he patiently heard their requests. At last my 
turn came, and when I stated ray business his countenance soft- 
ened and changed; and in a kindly, friendly tone and manner 
he said: "If you will come right around in here with me and 
take a seat till I get rid of this audience, I will look carefully 
into the case with you," or words to that effect. I did so, and 
at his leisure he gave me all the time I could ask; and treated 
me as though I was fully his equal. The porter at the door 
assumed far more impoi'tance than did the great President of 
the United States." 

Mr. Yarnum, towards the close of the war, was assigned for 
duty to the Department of Virginia and North Carolina, with 
headquarters at Fortress Monroe. While there a little inci- 
dent occurred which perhaps may be mentioned. 

After the collapse of the Confederate Government, it will be 
remembered that Jefferson Davis, their great chieftain, tried to 
escape from the comitry. He was captured and brought back 
and imprisoned in Mr. Varnum's office — Casemate No. 2, Fort 
Monroe — and it was here that the shackles were placed upon 
his ankles. Of course Major Varnum moved out (as did the 
proverbial rabbit when the houseless skunk persisted in taking 
up his abode in his burrow) ; but he saw him every day as 
soon as he was permitted to take his daily walk, and loaned 
him books to read, after the Government allowed him the priv- 
ilege of receiving reading matter. The shackles did not remain 
upon him long, however; lor after the great strain upon the 
prisoner incident to blighted hopes, and his ignominious down- 
fall, a reaction took place and he fell seriously ill, and his plain 
soldier's rations had to be exchanged for suitable diet, and 
more tender care was accorded to the notorious prisoner. 

After his duties in the army ceased, Mr. Yarnum resumed 
the practice of law in Lowell. His health was such, however, 


for several years before his death, as to forbid his taking ail 
active part in the trial of cases in the courts; but he was never 
idle for lack of clients or business. !N"aturally of a conciliatory 
disposition, his practice invariably was to exhaust all rea- 
sonable and honorable means of settlement and reconciliation 
before advising his clients to seek satisfaction in suits at law. 

After his withdrawal as an advocate in the trial of causes in 
the courts, Major Varnum was largely engaged in the manage- 
ment of trust estates, guardianships, executor's and administra- 
tor's trusts and office practice generally, while he had his full 
share of the better class of business of a busy city and its sur- 
rounding towns, where he was well and favorably known. 

Being a resident of Dracut — up to the time that Pawtucket- 
ville was annexed to Lowell — he was frequently elected to the 
offices of selectman, assessor and overseer of the poor, and as 
one of the selectmen he was one to negotiate a loan for Dra- 
cut's share of the expense of building the iron bridge at Paw- 
tucket Falls; Lowell and Dracut building the bridge together, 
each paying one-half the expense. 

In 1879, Mr. Yarnum was elected President of the Middle- 
sex North Agricultural Society, and served continuously in 
that office, with the exception of two years' intermission, up to 
the time of his death. 

In 1879 he was appointed on the State Board of Agricul- 
ture, which position he occupied at his decease. He was one 
of the executive committee of the board and chairman of the 
" Committee on the State College and Education." 

Major Varnum was a member of the City Council two years 
— 1881 and 1882. But he never aspired to public office. The 
methods by which political honors are often obtained, were 
always distasteful to him, and he held himself aloof from po- 
litical bargainings and intrigues. He was ever a staunch Re- 
publican, and seldom, if ever, omitted his duty at the polls. 



He joined the Pawtucket Congregational Church, September 
5, 1852— then called West Dracut Congregational Church- 
while that territory was yet Dracut, and he was always a valu- 
able and interested member of that institution. He was some- 
what conservative in his religious views, but tolerant and 
charitable towards those who held to a more liberal faith. 

He wrote the history of Dracut for Lewis & Co.'s History of 
Middlesex County; the History of Pawtucket Society; a his- 
tory of the Pawtucket meeting-house and a report of the Cen- 
tennial celebration of tlie same, June 15, 1892, which has been 
published as a souvenir; and he also wrote numerous personal 
sketches of prominent Dracut men and others of the Eevolu- 
tion, many interesting reminiscences and valuable papers which 
have saved from oblivion important facts of a local character, 
one or more of which has appeared among the Old Kesidents' 
Historical Association's contributions, of which organization 
he was a member. 

On the 2.3d day of August, 1865, while an officer in the 
Government service, he came North on leave of absence granted 
by the Secretary of War, and was united in marriage to Miss 
Mary J. Abbott, a teacher in Clinton, Mass., but a native of 
Greenfield, N. H., and daughter of H. A. Abbott of that 

Maj. Varnum's position entitled him to a house and servants 
and proper conveniences for comfortable living; and when he 
returned to the array he had the company of his wife, who re- 
mained with him there until he retired from office. 

They have had born to them three children — one daughter, 
Mary Grace, who died at an early ago, and two sons, Harold 
Abbott and Arthur Clayton Yarnum. 

Mr. Varnum was careful and painstaking in the practice of 
his profession, as well as in his literary work, and he did well 
and thoroughly whatever his hands found to do. He was an 


industrious, useful citizen, and earned the confidence and es- 
teem of his neighbors and of the public at large in all the 
region in which he was born and for so long resided. 

To escape the rigor of our New England climate, he spent 
the last two winters of his life in Florida; returning to his 
home he died there, May 4, 1897. 

Z. E. Stone. 



Dracutt, 1791 

From original plan made for the State of Massachusetts 
by Frederick French, Surveyor 

A^&t «.--< 



4. John Varntjm' {Samuel,^ Oeorge^), born 25 Oct., 1669, 
died 23 Feb., 1715. "John Yarnum of Dracutt and Dorothi 
Prescout of Groton, ware Lawfully mared in Nov., in the 13 
day in the year 1700." 

Thus in the script of John Yarnum himself, the first town 
clerk, is the fact duly set forth. 

Dorothy, born 16 Dec. 1681, was the daughter of Jonas and 
Mary (Loker) Prescott. The history of Groton, by Caleb But- 
ler, tells an interesting story of the courtship of the parents of 
Dorothy. There can be found no date of her decease. She 
outlived her husband and in Oct., 1722, was represented by 
her agent in fixing the boundary line between her farm and 
that of Col. Joseph Yarnum, her husband's brother. 

Five Children: 

i. Hannah,' b. 26 Dec, 1791 ; d. 6 May, 1815. 
ii. Sarah, b. 22 Apr., 1703; d. 26 Nov., 1742; m. (int.) 15 
Aug., 1722, Robert Blood of Concord. 

11. iii. John, b. 7 Feb. 1704-5; m. Phebe Parker. 
iv. Martha, b. 6 July, 1707 ; d. in infancy. 

12. V. Jonas, b. 10 May, 1710; m. Lydia Boyden. 

13. vi. Abraham, b. May 10, 1710; m. (1) Abigail Hardy; (2) 

Rachel ; (3) Rebecca Shead. 

14. vii. James, b. 4 Sept., 1712; m. Abigail Dearborn, 
viii. Dorothy, b. 21 Aug., 1715. 

John Yaexum was the first white child born in Merrimack 


river valley. In the account of the Varnura family wi-itten by 
his grandson Parker Yarnum (5. v.) it is stated that the In- 
dian squaws assisted the mother at his birth, and that there was 
great rejoicing over the advent of the little " white pappoose." 
He was the first Town Clerk of Dracutt, and held that office 
from 1702 to 1713. 

On 6 Feb., 1709, on petition of John Varnum, of Dracutt, in behalf 
of himself and others tliat the Reserved lands be at the disposal of the 
Freeliolders and Proprietors of the Town to be allotted as they shall see 
fit and among such as shall come to settle. A committee was appointed 
to inquire into the Quantity of the Reserved lands and make report what 
number of Inhabitants it may be capable of entertaining to make a strong 

The Records at East Cambridge contain the following quaint 
conveyance made to him when he was 24 years of age. 

Chelmsford, 7 Nov., 1693. " Anno regni Regis Gulielmo et Maraie Anglo 
Quinto." "John Kidder Joyner in the County of Middlesex in their 
Majestie's Province and Dominion of New England and America. For 
and in Consideration of six bushells of good Merchantable Indian Corn, 
well and truly paid by John Varnum, of Chelmsford, husbandman, con- 
veys a Tract of Land lyeing on ye North side of Merrimack River at a 
place called by ye name of Pautuccott falls, by estimation five hundred 
acres, purchased sometime since, by said Kidder and some others of ye 
Inhabitants of Chelmsford aforesaid." 

John Varnum early had a mill at the foot of Pawtucket 
Falls, where grain was readily turned into meal and flour.f 

He and his wife were buried in the little " Clay Pit " burial 
ground, called by Maj. A. C. Yarnum the "Colonial," near the 
spot where stood the first church of Dracutt, now between 
Yarnum Avenue and the Boulevard. He died intestate. An 
inventory of his property, made the " 8th day of March annoque 

* Court Records, Mass. State Archives, Vol. 9, Page 6. 

t Gordon. " Early Grants of lands in the Middlesex, north of the Merrimack." 



domi, 1714/15 " was filed at East Cambridge by Tliomas Var- 
num, Joseph Colburn and Samuel Colburn, " all Soficient fre- 
holders in ye town of Drawcutt." There is this endorsement 
on the papers: "John, eldest son, to pay his sister Sarah, Jonas 
and James to pay Abraham and Dorothy." 

The inventory is here given in detail as showing the pro- 
prietorship in land by an early settler in New England, and 
the value placed thereon: 

Imprimis. A house and barn witii ye lands whereon they stand and 
homestead 220£-0-0 

Item 3 Parcels of Land, one of which Adjoineth partly on ye East Side 
of the sd Homestead, the 2d Lyeth in a Field formerly calld " Amos' field, 
betwixt the land of Thomas and Joseph Varnum, Bounded by the Merri- 
mack river Southerly, the .3rd Lyeth near the Homestead being Parker's 
Land betwixt ye Lands of Thomas and Joseph Varnum. . 52-0-0 

A farme Lying at Pctuckct falls adjoining to ye River, as also the 3rd 
part of 36 acres of Land lying among sd Varnums. . . 120-0-0 

A parcel of meadow Land lying near the Homestead betwixt lands of 
sd Thomas and Joseph. ...... 25-0-0. 

Tlie 3rd part of farme called " Collicott " farme pur- 
chased by said Thomas, John and Joseph.* 30-0—0 

The 7 th part of a Tract of Land granted by ye Gen'l. 
Court to 14 men at 28-0-0 

Also the Privilege of a stream by Beaver Brook for ye 
Building of Mills. 5-0-0 

A piece of Meadow with some upland lying at a place 
known by ye name of Flaggy Meadow, Southward of ye 
meadow of said Joseph Varnum, and on all other points 
by ye Lands and meadow of Thomas Varnum, 30-0-0 

A small piece of undivided meadow lying at ye New 
meadow, bounded Southerly by Joseph Varnum, 2-10-0 

A piece of meadow lying at a place called Dubble Brook, 5-0-0 

517£ 10 

• • This, according to the plat in possession of the Compiler, mndc by Jona : Danforth, 3 m., 
1669, is described at 7 miles from the Merrimack, now in the State of N. H. 


Personal Estate : 

Imprimis : 

The sword, staff, and apparil, of ye Deceased at 10- 6-0 

His Books 1£ Firearms 3£ 4- 0-0 

3 Bedds, Bedding, and Belongings thereto 12- 5-0 
Table Linning and other Linning 2- 0-0 

4 Tables and 1 dozen chairs 2— 2-0 
4 Chests, Box and Looking glass — 2- 8-0 
Brass Kittles & other brass 1-10-0 
Pewter 1£ Rhum 3£ 7s 4- 7-0 
One pair Oxen 10£ & 6 Cows & Hoffers and a Bull 23£ 15s 33-15-0 
One Horse & 4 Mairs & 1 colt 16-10-0 
8 Swine, a Cart & things thereunto Belonging 1-10-0 
Also 2 Pair Horse Traises, Chain, Plow, Sithes, 2 hons, 31 

Axes & Span-shackels, Pin Staple & ring, & one Syckle 

all at 1-15-0 

Credits or Debts owing to ye Dec'd 12-10—0 

A Piece of Broadcloth & Cotton 7- 0-0 

111£ IBs Od 

11. John Yaenibi^ (John,^ Samuel,^ George^), horn 7 Feb., 
1704-5; died 26 July, 1785; married 15 July, 1730, Phebe, 
daughter of Joseph Parker of Andover, Mass., born 1713, died 
31 Jan., 1785-6. 
Twelve children: 

i. Phebe, b. 30 July, 1731; d. 1804; m. (int.) 30 Jan., 1752, 
Benjamin, son of Samuel and Deborah (Kimball) Poor of 
Andover, Mass., b. 5 Mar., 1728, d. 1823 at Andover, Me. 
Seven children (Poor) : 
Phebe, b. 24 June, 1754; d. 13 Apr., 1819, at An- 
dover, Me. 
Patty, b. 23 Dec, 1758; d. 20 Sept., 1762. 
Benjamin, b. 15 Sept., 1760; m. Joanna Batchelder. 
Very little known of him. He settled at " Poor's 
IMills," Belfast, Me., and died there. 


John: rouRTH gexeration. 49 

Patty, b. 24 Feb., 1765 ; d. 10 Dec, 1844, at Belfast, 
Me. ; m. Nathan Swan. 

Samuel, b. 30 May, 1767; d. 4 Feb., 1820, at An- 
dover, Me. ; m. Ann Moody Merrill. 

James, b. 13 Dec, 1769 ; ra. Nancy Johnson. He set- 
tled at " Head of the Tide," Belfast, and probably died 
there. Very little is known of him. 

Dorothy, b. 2 Feb., 1772; m. Jonathan Stevens. 

Benjamin Poor's family lived in Andover, Mass., up 

to 1795, when they removed to East Andover, York 

Co., Me. 

ii. Lydia, b. 12 Oct., 1732; m. 1 Aug., 1754, Jacob Tyler of 

Andover, Mass. She was his second wife. 
ill. Susannah, b. 4 Sept., 1734; d. 27 Nov., 1811; m. (int.) 15 
Feb., 1757, Ebenczer, son of Samuel and Deborah (Kimball) 
Poor of Andover, Mass., b. 16 Jan., 1732, d. 21 Aug., 
1809, at Andover, Me. 
Twelve children (Poor) : 

Ebenezer, b. 4 Jan., 1758; d. 31 July, 1762. 
Betsey, b. 2 Dec, 1789 ; d. 14 Oct., 1797, at Andover, 

^le. ; m. 1 Dec, 1785, Nathan Adams. 
Susan, b. 1761; d. 1762. 
Lydia, b. 4 April, 1762 ; d. Auff., 1762. 
Susannah, b. 29 Nov., 1763 ; d."l844 at Bangor, Me. ; 

m. 23 Jan., 1794, Luke Wilder. 
Ebenezer, b. 28 Oct., 1765; d. 15 Jan., 1837, at An- 
dover, Me. ; m. 8 Sept., 1794, (1) Betsey Stevens, 
(2) Lucy Littlefield AVasson. 
Sylvanus, b. 7 Mar., 1768; d. 1 Nov., 1848, at An- 
dover, Me. ; m. 18 Feb., 1803, Mary Merrill. 
William, b. 3 Aug., 1770; d. 4 July, 1776. 
Dolly, b. 12 Oct., 1772 ; d. Sept. 29, 1820, at Hebron ; 

m. 10 July, 1808, Christopher Allen. 
Persis, b. 22 Oct., 1774; d. 18 Jan., 1850, at Wd- 
liamsburg. Me. ; m. 11 Feb., 1805, Moses Grecnleaf. 
William, b. 5 Sept., 1776 ; d. at Bangor, Me., 17 Sept., 
1829 ; m. 26 Mar., 1807, Sarah Farrington. 


Phebe Varnum, b. 19 Nov., 1779 ; d. at Bangor, Me., 
24 Apr., 1847; m. Jacob McGaw. 
iv. Hannah, b. 27 June, 1736 ; m, (int.) 30 Apr., 1750, Benjamin 
Stevens of Andover, Mass. 
One child (Stevens) : 
John Varnum. 
V. John, b. 10 Feb., 1736-7; d. 23 Oct., 1760, of a fever at 
Crown Point, N. Y. Lt. John Varnum was a soldier under 
the Crown. In the Massachusetts State Archives, Crown 
Point Muster Rolls (Vol. VIII, pp. 254-5), there is "A 
Muster Roll of the Company in his Majesty's service, under 
command of William Barrons, Esq., Capt., of Concord." In 
it appears the name of John Varnum, 2d Lieut., entered ser- 
vice 20 Feb., 1760. In this Co. there were 14 Dracutt men 
who served as privates, among them Jonathan Varnum, cousin 
to the said John, 
vi. Dolly, b. 8 Oct., 1739; d. 2 Jan., 1765; m. 26 Nov., 1763, 
Capt. Peter Coburn of Dracutt, b. 5 Nov., 1737, d. 3 May, 
1813. Capt. Coburn commanded a Dracutt company of Mi- 
nute-men at the battle of Bunker Hill. In this company there 
were four Varnums : James and Jonas, his wife's brothers ; 
her cousin, Ebenezer, 2d Lieut., and her Uncle John. In 
this company, also, was their only son, Peter, Jr., who served 
as a drummer boy. Capt. Coburn, it is said, was the last man 
who spoke to Gen. Warren before he fell. In referring to this 
fact, he asserted : " If the General had run instead of deliber- 
ately and coolly walking away, after the command, ' Every 
man for himself,' he would not have been killed." The clothes 
worn by Capt. Coburn at said battle showed marks of the 
conflict, and were proudly displayed by his descendants. 
One child (Coburn) : 

Peter, Jr., b. 18 Dec., 1764; d. 12 Feb., 1832; m. 
Elizabeth Poor of Andover. 
vii. Sarah, b. 19 Apr., 1741; d. 26 Nov., 1741. 
viii. Sarah, b. 23 July, 1742; d, 18 Dec., 1824; m. 4 May, 1766, 
John Nutting of Pepperell? 

Crown Point Expedition, iy$<^-6o 


johit: fourth ge^teeation. 51 

ix. Dorcas, b. 4 Mar., 1743-4; d. 2 Dec, 1832. 

15. X. Parker, b. 17 Mar., 1745-6 ; m. (1) Dorcas Brown, (2) Abiah 


16. xi. James, b. 8 Sept., 1747; m. (1) Prudence Hildreth, (2) 

Eleanor Bridges, (3) Martha McAdams. 
xii. Peter, b. 23 July, 1750; d. 1754. 

17. xiii. Jonas, b. 11 July, 1752; m. Polly Parker. 

11. John Yaexum was born and lived in Dracutt on the 
farm of his father. He became the most prominent man of his 
day in North Eastern Massachusetts. Of his brothers, Jonas 
went to West Groton, now Pepi)ere]l, James went to Chester, 
N. II., while Abraham remained in Dracutt. 

In 1725, when he was twenty-one years of age, he joined the 
company commanded by the celebrated Capt. John Lovewell, 
which went to Pigwackett, now Fryeburg, Me., on snow shoes 
to hunt for Indians. They surjirised and killed a party consist- 
ing of nine Indians and a boy. These they scalped in order to 
get the bounty then offered by the Bay State Colony for such 
evidences of slaughter. For this prowess he, with the com- 
mand, received the thanks of the General Court, and an award* 
as the law provided.* A very full account of this expedition 
is given in " Book of the Indians," Book III, chap. IX, and a 
list of the membeis which made up the command, among which 
is that of John Yarnum aforesaid. 

Bailey's Historical Sketches of Andover, p. 74, rather roman- 
tically alludes to John Yarnum, the soldier, as follows: "the 
movement of military companies or of soldiers going to join com- 
panies to march against the Indian enemy was also a consider- 
able feature of the travelling of the Colonial ])eriod, and there 
was no small stir and flutter in the domestic inns, where the 
young officers with cutlass and halberd and headpiece, musket 

•The Nens-Lctter of Jan. 7, 1725, says: "The Loftenant Gov & Council were pleased to 
give them (Capt. LoveweU's Co.) fifty pounds over & above the one hundred and fifty allowed 
by law." 

According to present reckoning the pound was then worth about $1.30. — [Nason.] 


and pike, and the various paraphernalia of military outfit, ar- 
rived or tarried for entertainment, and told the tale of their own 
or their comrades' prowess. One such stopping at the inn of 
Joseph Parker was, tradition says, " sumptuously entertained," 
and a soldier John Yarnum of Dracutt afterwards took to him- 
self Phebe, the innkeeper's daughter, for a wife."' 

He served as Town Clerk of Dracutt for many years ; from 
1726 to 1729 and from 1735 to 1712, and the records of the 
town are admirably kept. In 1711 he headed a Committee on 
behalf of the town, which presented a protest against the decree 
of the King (George II.) ordering the running a new bound- 
ary line between Xew Hampshire and Massachusetts. This 
cut off a large portion of Dracutt, and threw into the former 
State much land belonging to him and his family. He labored 
earnestly and assiduously, in connection with Committees from 
the other towns affected, against the consummation of the un- 
just and arbitrary act of the King, and it was proposed to send 
an agent to England to lay their grievance before the King's 
Council ; but the Colonial Governor resisted all importunities, 
and with his Council issued an order against interference.* 
In 1767 the town complimented him by voting in meeting " to 
clear L't John Yarnum and family from working on the high- 
ways and the town ways." He was a Justice of the Peace as 
early as 1767, and was commissioned Justice of the Peace and 
the Quorum 20th Mar., 1776, w^hich office he held by reappoint- 
ment up to his decease. He held appointment as a member of 
a " Commission to sell forfeited Estates " from 1782 to 1785. 
He was also a member of a Committee under " Act for taking 
up and restraining persons dangerous to the Commonwealth," 

* Court Records State ArchiTes, vol. 64, p. 91. Dracutt, as originally laid out, had the 
goodly proportions of a Township. It ran seven miles east down the Merrimack, and six 
miles north up to New Hampshire. Its first dismemberment was at some period after 1702, 
when an area opposite Tyng's Island was set off to Dunstable. On the olh July, 1746, the 
land cut off by the new boundary line was incorporated into Pelham. Subsequent dismem- 
berments, on 28 February, 1851, 18 May, 1874, and 1 April, 1879, by annexations to Lowell, 
have left but a skeleton of a town. 


passed 14 Feb., 1781, for Middlesex Co. In his diary quoted 
later on, will be found many instances, of his passing judgment 
on tories brought before him under this act. Before him as 
Justice came many cases for adjudication, and his rare good 
sense was a marked characteristic of his decisions, and pre- 
vented appeals to higher courts. 

His diaries or journals covering the important and stirring 
years of 1777 to 1782, are full of entries showing his sentiments 
on the questions of that day, and they prove him to have been 
a man of very vigorous and advanced ideas. At a time when 
negro servitude in Massachusetts was held to be legal, it not 
having been abrogated by statute, he upheld against owners of 
slaves, the freedom of the black man, and his words of scoi'u 
and denunciation show his rare sense of justice and right, and 
mark him as a humanitarian in the broa:dest significance of the 

Extracts from the journals referred to, are now for the first 
time published, and seem providentially to have been preserved 
to illustrate his life and character, and make his personality real 
to his descendants. They consist of three books in which was 
kept a record of daily events or domestic Inisiness and general 
aflairs. They were found in an old window-settle, which re- 
quired the services of a carpenter to open, in the house which 
was his abode. To this fact may possibly l)e attributed their 
preservation, and consequently the source at this late day of 
very much valuable and interesting information in this history. 

• Jfoore, " Ilistorj- of Slavery in Massachusetts," p. 180, says : " It is not amiss to remember, 
that in llie first, last and only direct and formal attempt to abolish slavery in Massachusetts 
(June, 1777) the popular branch of the Legislature of that State laid the bill for that purposo 
on the table, with a direction that 'application be made to Congress on the subject thereof,' 
and adds, p. 163, its overthrow was accomplished by 'judicial construction without the aid of 
legislation.' Gov. John A. Andrew used to assert that slavery was not made illegal in Massa- 
chusetts by a statute, but by a judicial interpretation of the Bill of liights." 


lievolutionary War. 

31 Jan'y, Parker returned from Boston about 9 at night. Brought 
this weeks newspaper which gave an account that since Christmas we have 
killed and taken more than 2000 British and Hessian Murderers. That 
we are driving and taking more or less of them every day. That Gen. 
Putnam had taken 96 waggon loads with Tory goods, That provisions was 
scanty with the Britains. That ye Hessians was Recalled by i-eason of a 
French Invasion of their Country. That more than one thousand of our 
unfortunate Captives in their hands had Languished and Died in the City 
of Xew York with himger and hard usage since ye reduction of Fort 
Washington. That a war between Great Britain, France and Spain was 
supposed inevitable. 


5 Feb'y. Hezekiah Colburn and wife, Jos. Varnum, Jr., and wife, 
Abiah Hildreth and wife, Polly Parker and Polly Gault, dined with us on 
a Bread Pudding, a Corned Leg of Pork, a Brisket &c., a Host shoulder 
of Pork, a Lino of Mutton &c., Rost Turkey, tarts and Cheese &c. 
Jacob Tyler, Jr., and his sister Lydia, and Mr. Henry Ingalls Jr. from 
Andover here on a visit in the afternoon. In the evening there came in a 
number of young folks on son Jonas' invitation, so as make the number 32. 
Had a pleasant evening. The said Company stayed and supt of a cold 
supper, stayed lute. 


11 Feb. Capt. Russell Called his company together to Inlist men. 
Inlisted none and adjourned to Monday next. 

10 I\Iar. Monday, Town meeting & Training to raise soldiers poor 

31 March. In the afternoon attending on a Town meeting appointed 
to raise men for tlie Army for three years. Voted to add to their bounty 
one hundred dollars. Each man to be paid by the town. Chose Commit- 
tee to adjust past services In the wars. The Committee was Capt. Peter 
Coburn, Capt. Stephen Russell, Capt. Joseph Bradley Varnum, Lt. 
Ephraim Coburn, Dea. Thos. Hovey, Mr. William Hildreth, and ilr. 
Jona : Coburn. Said committee are authorised by vote to give security on 

johk: fourth genekation. 55 

sd towns behalf to each man that shall Inlist into sd service for three years 
30£ lawful money, over & above what ye Bounty of ye State is. On 
which a number Immediately inlisted. 

8 May. William Hildrcth, Hincsman Richardson, Joshua Wood & 
Josiah Bosell went to Concord & Passed muster. Hildreth & Wood went 
to Cambridge. Richardson returned home. Asa Coburn set out for 
Cambridge the same day. Brought yc rear. Dracutt has turned out its 
full quota for the 3 years & for the 3 Months. 

Tory Trial. 

26 May. I went to Aaron Coburns to meet Chelmsford Committee, to 
receive a Tory they had in Tow, and to hear their complaint vs. him. 
Their complaint was that he was a vagrant, Lying, Idle, Deceitful, Dan- 
gerous person who had called himself by different names, made false pre- 
tenses and evasive answers and had sworn and curst profainly. Ilec'd. 
and drew their complaint made out process, Examined the man, found him 
guilty. He begged leave to inlist, and that he might receive the Bounty 
and pay the fines and Costs. His i-equest was granted, and he inlisted. 

British Prisoner. 

23 June. The body of the Highlander that was Drownd Last fall, was 
found lodged on the Fishing point. The Selectmen notified thereof, on 
which tliey sent word to the Highlanders, his brethren in ye Captives at 
Chelmsford. They attended his funeral & buried him themselves. Be- 
haved decently. Asked liberty to bury him in ye Graveyard, which was 
granted. They invited Mr Davis to pray at tiie funeral. Offered to pay 
hiui for his services. 

May Training. 

29 May. In the forenoon attended on training &c. No Rhum flip 
nor Cyder to be had at ye Tavern, the first training of that kind ever 
heard of in Dracutt. 

War U'ews. 

We have gi-eat and surprising news from part of Washington's Army. 
If true he is an Infidel or Tory tliat hath not a Thankful heart. 


War /Scare. 

3 Aug. Sunday had news of ye alarm and surprise at Imagining the 
Britisii fleet appeared at Boston. The surprise was so great that they sent 
into ye Country as far as Westford for teams to remove stores &c. The 
teams sent for on Saturday returned Sunday. 

Sattle of Bennington. 

24 Aug. Had tidings of a Battle near Bennington which was gretly in 
our favor. Killed & wounded about 1000 of ye Enemy and took 1000 
stand of Arms & Much baggage «&;c. Lost about 100, and as many 


25 Sept. Orders came to town for 1-2 of ye able bodied officers & sol- 
diers Immediately to march for Tyconderoga. 

29 Sept. Capt Jos Bradley Vanium was drawn out with 40 men to 
march to ye Westward. 

A Personal Supplication. 

9 Oct. Xo news since Thursday last from our Army. A day of Great 
expectation, and we trust universal supplication to ye Devine Being for 
devine protection and the Salvation of this Continent, with fear and trem- 
bling for the token of Devine displeasure while ye horrors and carnage of 
a Civil war is raging In the midst of us. But thankfully considering that the 
smiles and protection of Heaven hath hitherto invited us by faith and refor- 
mation, to supplicate that Mercy may prevail against judgment so that we 
may be a Reformed and spared people and Sing of God's Salvation. 


19 Oct. We had great and good News since Thursdays paper viz that 
Washingtons Army has drove Howes & had environed Burgoynes. 

Burgoyne's Defeat. 

25 Oct. All rejoicing at ye great and glorious news of Burgoynes de- 
feat and his Army resigning to our Army. Praising ye God of Armya 
for ye Conquest. 

johk: foueth gei^eeatiox. 67 


21 Nov. Drawing wnrrents ys Tories : one Mr. "Whitney of Town- 
send, and Mr. Timothy Prescott of Westford, iiere after warrants ; gave 
one vs Isaac and William AVallice, Reuben Tucker, Joshua Smith and Seth 
Johnson, all of Townsend ; One against Ira Chase, of Groton, on com- 
plaint of Jonathan Severance of sd Groton, and one against Mr. Wil- 
lard Hall, the former minister of Westford, on the complaint of ye town 
by a vote agreeable to the Tory act returned by the Town Clerk. 


Had news that Genl Washington had Iiigagement with How — had 
killed & taken his Army & had taken him prisoner. 

Tory Trial. 

26 Nov. In the afternoon set up a special Court of Sessions for the 
tryal of Torys. Impannellcd a Juiy, tried Jos Chase. The Jury brought 
him in guilty, committed him to ye Board of War. 

27 Nov. Opened ye Court of Sessions, heard Sunday pleas to quash 
the proceedings of said Court on^the tryal of Wallace and Holden which 
was all overruled, and when we came to impanel the jury, found tliere 
was no jury drawn for that tryal. The constable had not shown the Clerk 
of ye session that there was any such tryal. We therefore had no jury 
and dismissed the Respondents, and adjourned the Court without day. 

Thanksgiving for Victory. 

18 Dec. A general Thanksgiving throughout ye Continent by order of 
Congress for the success in taking Burgoynes Army, and of supplication 
for further success and protection. 


15 Jan. About 2 of ye Clock the company viz : Hezekiah Coburn and 
wife, Parker Varnum and wife, Roger Ray and Hannah Brown, Henry 
Coburn and Samuel Richardson, Samuel Coburn and Rlioda, Jonas Var- 
num and Polly Parker, John Parkhurst, Isaac Parker, Abijah Hill and 
Bradstreet Coburn set off in three double slays to go to Billerica, went as 
far as Capt. Miners. Took a drink of Flip and toddy and returned through 


the town. Got back here about Sun setting. The Company set oflf for 
Joseph Varnum's to sup there with fife and fiddle and returned home at 
about 2 A. M. 

Dracutt Soldiers. 

11 Feb. This day there was a town meeting to see what Dracut will do 
towards returnino; the Continental Soldiers that enlisted for Dracutt for 3 
years, the times being Extravagant & the cloathing difficult to procure & 
Extravagantly dear. Granted 600 dollars to provide each man, a pare of 
shirts, a pare of shoes & a pare of stockings. 


11 Feb. There is a suspicion of Burgoynes Infidelity, so that neither 
he nor his Army are to be suflPered to Imbark till that be cleared up. 

Dracutt Census. 

Found in ye Day book of ye 28 Jany last, that the return of the male 
inhabitants of the Town of Dracutt there was 225, 3 of which were of ye 
Boston Donationers, one of Charlesto\vn one Idiot, one distraught man 
that had been so for a number of years, one who had lost the use of his 
limbs, & although incapable of helping himself for sundry years past & 
without hopes of recovery & 4 Negroes. 


Find in ye Papers that Howes orders are not to call the Americans 
Rebbels in the future. 

Dracutt Soldiers. 

16 Feb. Capt Russell called his Company together to Inlist 5 men for 
the service of ye State for 3 months, for a guard at Boston. Jabish Co- 
burn, Nehemiah Flint, Amos Bradley Jr, Ephm "Wright & Benj : Bowers 
drafted to go. Nehemiah Flint liired Wm Abbott to do his turn. Gave 
him 30 §. 

24 March. In ye afternoon, there was a training to raise 12 men to 
go on the Guards for 3 months. 

Sunday Family Incident. 

12 April. Fair warm & pleasant. Self & Wife, Parker & wife, Jonas, 
Isaac, Persis Hill & Sal Farmer, all went to meeting, without our great 


Coats for je 1st time this year. My wife & Dorkis rode in ye shay with 
Jonas horse. The horse took fright Took my wife & Dorkis out of yo 
shay at Cobler farme. Carried my wife on a pillion from thence. Dorkis 
walked on foot. The horse brought the shay home well. 

Hired Man. 

13 April. Settled a bargain with Wm Young for G months labor, be- 
oinninT this day, for which I am to give him a wool home-made coat, 
waistcoat & breeches, two shirts, 2 pare of Trowsers, 2 pare of stockings, 
a pare of shoes, a hat & 10$ for which sd Wm promised to labor for me 
for 6 mos from this day. 

I gave Parker a 30$ bill to buy cloth for Wm. Young. He went to 
]Mr. Poores, Bought 8 yds at 4 J $ per yd of all wool cloth. 


28 April. Informed that ye Commissioners was come from Briton to 
treat with Congress for Peace, as they pretend. 

Victory at Monmotith Court House. 

28 June. The famous battle near Monmouth Court House In Ye Jer- 
seys, was fought on the sd 28 June, between the American army under 
the Command of his Excellency Gen'l. Washington, and the British Army 
under the Command of ye base Sir Henry Clinton (the most savage and 
Inhuman General), and after an obstinate engagement of about 4 hours, the 
American Army prevailed, the British gave way and left their Dead in the 
field. It was a complete Victory in ye American favor, and Night coming 
on, they could not pursue any farther, and Lay on their Arms all night to 
be ready for an Ingagement the next morning. But ye British fled in ye 
Xight privately and the Americans did not know they were going. Many 
were slain on both sides, and many died in the Battle with ye fatigue and 
Intense heat. 

Great Storm. 

26 Dec. Very heavy cold storm. All the sea shut up. No business 
done. One of our Privateers has driven ashore near Plymouth, 100 hands 
aboard, 80 thereof died with cold. A ship came in near Newbury. Kan 
aground. The hands all perished. A man with a team of 4 oxen and a 
horse passing Boston neck, plunged into a snowdrift, and were found dead 


on Sunday morning one pare standing on their feet. As many ships cast 
away on these Coasts and as many people perished with the cold as ever 
hath been known in any one storm since the memory of men. The present 
week is supposed to be the coldest that is known for more than half a 

Town Meeting. 

Monday 1 ilar. Annual meeting. Chose Capt Russell, Jona : Co- 
bum Jos Varnum Jr Selectmen, Assessors & Overseers of the Poor. Sd 
Jos Varnum Town Treasurer. Kendal Parker Jr, & John Coburn Con- 
stables. Maj Samuel Varnum, Jona : Varnum, Jona: Coburn, Jessee 
Adams, & Timo : Barker Jr Surveyors of ways. Ebenr Coburn Surveyor 
of weights & Measures Jos Varnum Jr, & Abram Coburn Surveyors 
of lumber. Capt Hale, Isaac Bradley, Peter Hazeltine, Wm Elliott, & 
Francis Sawyer, fishwardens to take care of ye Alewives. Voted that 
should be no Alewives taken in Beaver Brook, or ye Brook called Dubble 
Brook, or in Dennisons Brook, only on Mondays Tuesdays and Wednes- 
days & on these days not to take any in sd Beaver Brook within 30 feet 
of the sluice ways, for sd fish to go thro the same, and not to take any in 
Dubble Brook and the Town-way that leads from Ezra Coburns to Dr 
Abbotts & Beaver Brook, and that there shall be none taken in sd Denni- 
son Brook between the To«Ti-way easterly of ye old mill calld "Wilsons 
Mill & the upper side of eaid mill. 


4 March. One Stephen Hart well here to advise relating to a Neagro 
named Jeffery Hartwell. Spent considerable time with him, at his re- 
quest relating to said Xegros freedom. He would have given me a fee. 
I refused to take one (in a Neagro cause). 


Parker had a great entertainment. ]\Ir Brown, & his wife Mrs Rhoda, 
Elijah Fletcher & wife, Michael HUdreth & wife, Phillip Parker & wife, 
Bradley Varnum & Wife, Capt Peter Coburn & wife. Doctor Little & 
wife, Matthew Parker & Avife, Jonas Varnum & Polly Parker, Isaac 
Parker & Abijah Hill and myself & wife, all dined & supped here. Jonas 
& Polly went to a Dance the same evening at Abijah Fox's. Henry Co- 


buiTi, Thomas Varnum, Bradstreet Coburn, & a large number of young 
people went to sd Fox's to the Dance there that evening. 


7 May. Isaac Parker set out in the evening with Parkers horse & my 
horsecart, with about 150 lbs of salmon for Boston one of them being a 
Falls Salmon : the others were from the Salmon Eddy. 

8 May. Isaac Parker sold his salmon at Ss per lb in Boston. His load 
came to about 200$. He returned about 6 in the eveg:. Brought me 3 
qts of best West India Rhum at $5 and i per qt. 

31 May. Kept no Journal regularly by reason of being overcrowded 
with Busness. 

4 Dec. Drew Bonds of Surety for parties who paid me what they 
called as good as 3 hard Dollars 20 to 1. 

10 Dec. Thos Varnum had a Dance at his house in the Evg as the 
same fell by lot there. 


8 Jan. The severest season from the 20 Nov last till this time, that 
hath been known for seventy years past. 

10 Jan. Town Meeting. A few people came on Snow shoes. 

12 Jan. Thos Varnum & our family again broke the way to Capt 
Hales. Went with shovels, oxen & horses, through fields & pastures. 

13 Jan. Extreme blue day. Snow buried. Paths very much filled 
up we broke yesterday. 

28 Jan. The coldest day that has been this winter or perhaps this 
Century. Parker returned abt evg from Boston. Complained bitterly 
of ye cold. Ye snow 4 feet deep at York. All obliged to haul their wood 
2 miles by hand. 

30 Jan. No travelling by horses. 

31 Jan. Extremely cold — the coldest day that hath been this winter, 
& growing colder. 


14 Feb. Isaac Parker set out in ye morning abt l5, with a load of 14 
bushels of meal for Newburyport. We sold to Abijah Hill 8 barrills of 
Cyder, which he is to ti-ansport to Boston, and carefully cause the same to 


be drawn & sold by ye mug & we to hsive ye i of what it will fetch 
there, he to keep a good a/c thereof, & pay us the proportion & we to 
have the barrills returned at Boston. We gave him 2 bbls of Cyder here 
in our Cellar with the bbls free to pay the transport of ye eight. We 
delivered the sd 8 bbls of Cyder in Clielinsford at the foot of Petuckit 
Falls, & sd Hill hired Bradley Varnum to carry ye same to Boston for 
which he is promised 220$. 

Town Meeting. 

6 March. Annual Town Meeting. Chose Dea Bradley moderator. 
Mr Wm Hildreth town Clerk. Jos Varnum eir town Treasurer. Chose 
Capt Russell, Capt Jos Bradley Varnum, Dea Hovey Selectmen. They 
all refused. Then chose Sam'I Coburn, Bradley & Jos Varnum Jr Se- 
lectmen. They also utterly refused to serve. Then Chose Messrs Isaac 
Bradley, Thos Taylor, James Harvey Constables. Thos Taylor hired 
Obediah Richardson to serve as Constable in sd Taylors stead. The sd 
Town accepted him. Divided the Town into 3 Districts by the name of 
ye upper, the middle and the lower District. The upper extends as far 
East as the grct Road that leads from Bradleys ferry northward to Edward 
Coburns. The middle extend from sd Road Easterly to a Town way 
Easterly of George Burns Dwellinghouse, from thence running Southerly 
to Maj Saml Varnums, including sd Burns & sd Vai'nums. The Easterly 
or lower District to extend from ye last mentioned way to ye Easterly line 
of sd Town. Swore sd Constables and the day being far spent, by vote 
adjourned to Thursday next, at 9 in the morning to meet at the Meeting 
House in sd Dracutt. 

Town Meeting. 

9 March. Parker & myself attended on the adjournment of the sd an- 
nual Town Meeting. The meeting was full & being opened the people 
chose Parker Varnum 1st Selectman, Capt Jos Bradley Varnum 2d & 
Jos Varnum Jr 3rd. The vote being unanimous they all accepted. 


12 Apr. A Negro wench named Happis came here from Colo : Sam'I 
Johnson's of Andover to advise relating to her freedom. She being 26 
years old, advised she was free, that a land of freedom knows no slavery, 


that all attempts to keep up that practice (which hath been too long toler- 
ated) are arbitrary, cruel and wicked and contrary to ye Laws of God and 
Christianity. And all that are assisting are abettors in robbing their 
fellow Creatures of their liberty wherein God hath made them free. After 
all which arguement being used, Thos. Rugg, of Andover, being present, 
he being employed by said Johnson to take back said Negro, and hearing 
all the aforesaid arguements, attempted violently and arbitrarily, without 
any precept, to seize and take said Negro by force, but was by her repulsed 
and went off disappointed and ashamed. 


24 Oct. Cyder very plentiful. We had apples, as was supposed, eof- 
ficient to make 200 barrells, but made 155. 


3 March. Daniel Parker here from Haverhill. Spent ye afteraoon 
Supt & lodged. Paid Capt James 200$ borrowed. Bought James' Mili- 
tary coat & Paid him 800$ for same. 

22 March. Aaron Small brought us 1/2 bushels of beans, asked 67$ 
for them. 

4 April. Selectmen here, finished the great Rate for the hire of Sol- 
diers. Our part came to about 100 Hard Dollars which at 75 to one 
comes to 7500 Continental Dollars. 

2 ]\Iay. Parker paid to me 536$ which he received from Dea Hovey 
for a barrell of Rhum. 

The Great Seine. 

14 May. The proprietors of the great scan. Part of them, met to tie 
on and mend the great net. That is self, Capt Peter Coburn, Jonathan 
Varnum, Eleazer Coburn, Jonas Varnum, Jabish Coburn, Tim : Williams, 
& Timo : Coburn. 

Town fleeting. 

Met in the afternoon to choose a representative. Chose Capt Joseph 
Bradley Varnum. He accepted the trust. 


Cornwallis Stirrender. 

27 Oct. Maj James Ford here, came from Boston. Brought a hand 
bill Containing: tlie great and glorious news of the Surrender of Coruwal- 
lis & his Army to ye American Army. 


26 Nov. Mr Isaac Parker came home from sea, has been gone about 
6 months, been to Bilboa in a letter of mark. In the voyage going & 
returned, had hoped to take 8 or 10 prizes. Made myself & wife a fine 
present of 2 pare of fine spectacles with their cases, & a pare of large glass 


6 Dec. Capt James going off with a drove of fat cattle, sold to the 
beef agt Capt Jos Bradley Varnum for the army, viz : Capt Jas large 
speckled ox at 44$ ; my fine brindle steers at 44$ ; & Parkers farrer cow 
at 25$, to be pd by agts certificates 

Went by Bradleys ferry, Bad passing there. 

Continental Thanksgiving . 

13 Dec. Continental Thanksgiving throughout the American States. 
A day set apart by order of Congress to praise God for His mercy & protec- 
tion ye year past. But in particular for His Divine favor in delivering 
into our hands the w'hole British Army under the command of Cornwallis 
in so miraculous a manner. 

JoHif Yaentjm died suddenly 26 July, 1785, aged 80 years 
and 5 months. His widow did not long survive him, dying the 
following January (3d) in the 73d year of her age. They both 
lie in the little Woodbine Cemetery on Yarnum Avenue. 

His Will bearing date 1 Feb., 1783, is filed in the East Cambridge 
Probate Records. He leaves his Vife " all my household goods of every 
sort and denomination that belong to household furniture. Also my best 
horse and shayes and horse furniture, my best yoke of oxen, 4 cows, six 
sheep and 40 £ " Lawful silver money," and one third part of his real 
estate "situate in Dracutt aforesaid and in Pelham." 


He gives and bequeathes to his 4 daughters, Phehc, wife of Benj. Poor ; 
Lydia, wife of Mr. Jacob Tyler; Susannah, wife of Ebenezer Poor; and 
Hannah, wife of Mr. Benj. Stevens, the sum of 200 £ Lawful silver 
money " within 4 years " after his decease, and adds " whereas silver money 
is very scarce and hard to collect, and it appears to me Likely to be 
scarcer and more difficult to collect, my Will, therefore Is that my Execu- 
tors shall have Liberty to pay the above said Legacys in Corn or Cattle 
at the Common markit price, that said Corn and Cattle shall be estimated." 
He also bequeathes them 4-8 of all his Lands in the town of Stoddard, 
N. H., and having, in other ways, given to each of them, this is to be iu 
full, of thch- portions.* 

lie gives to his son Parker the whole of the homestead farm witii his 
dwelling house and all buildings ; the Back wood land including the Great 
Bush Pasture and the whole of Angilica Swamp, consisting of about 150 
acres. To his son James, he gives "about 1(50 acres adjoining on the 
great Road adjoining Land that I sometime since by Deed Granted to sd 
James towards his portion of my Estate that leads from my Dwelling 
house to Pctucket Falls. 

To his son Jonas, " all Tracts of Lands and meddow called my old 
meddow farm, situate in Peiiiam, N. II., also the Westerly third part of 
Land thereto adjoining called my Line pasture, containing, by estimation, 
about 200 acres, also a Slip of land adjoining Soutliorly of about 200 
acres, and a Wood lot on Long Hill in Dracutt, of about 20 acres, also 
all my Right in the Great Spruce Swamp in Dracutt, supposed to be more 
than ten acres, also 1-3 part of all my Rights in the Lands at the mouth 
of Beaver Brook called the (ireat Bunt scan Proprietors Lands with 1-3 
Right of a small house standing thereon, called the Proprietor's Fish 
Houte, with 1-3 part of my Right in the Great Sean, Called the Great 
Bunt scan, also 1-3 part of all my Rigiit of the privilege of the Fishery 
at Petuckct Falls, and 1-3 part of all my wharfings stagings and privilege 
of building same or setting of Salmon pots or any other fishing at said 
Falls, also 1-3 part of Right of diging or making landing at tlie head of 
said Petuckct Falls or of building mills, or making dams and laying lum- 
ber at and of passing and repassing from the same for ye improvement 
thereof, also 1-8 part of my Lands in Stoddard, N. H., and 1-3 part of 

• 1 1 Sept., 1778. Gave my daughters a deed of my Eastern lands at Blue Hill bay, Sup- 
posed to be about 100 acres each. They were thankful &c., &c. J. Vs. Journal. 



-■v. H.. ^L 


35 OTreE ms 


• ^t — JW 

12. JoxAS VA:ExirK ~ - 

1710: d. 2y Mfir_ 17S5, i^ .-r -J^. .7 -'. 
Je^m aod LxidJa SSae^e of Gtc^toh. 3*^ 
XosssoeL (2 ♦ 12 Feb., 173^-4:1 
bejh Boyd«i of Groton. b. J2 Ik.^ . L " L - - - . _ 

Seven Cinldreii: 
i. Ljf<£a,* b. a Ost^ 1733; d. m cmdbiidi, 4 

Ok GUU (F^i^Br) : 
L^db, b. 30 Jdk, 175«. 

A^., 17*6; K. 


18. ii. J—-?. Jr., b. 9 Jan., 1736-7 : Eebecca Spa-olding. 
iii. ' 11 Dec. 1739. 

5v • 11 M*r., 1741-2 ; m. 22 Apr., 1766, Daniel Fisle 

Icz. ' ""'-" : 

V . ::e7. 

Naman. b. o Jan., 1769. 

Mkah, b. 11 Jnne, 1771. 

Wali«-, b. 17 Jane, 1773. 

M>cah, b. 9 Jan., 177-5. 

Daniel, b. 9 Max., 1777. 

BenT,.b. 17 F^., 1779. 

Saniii, b. 1 July, 175il. 

Joaak, b. 31 Jan., 1783. 

Vamuni, b. 13 Sept., 17^6. 
T. Sarah, b. 4 Feb., 1744—5 ; m. 4 Xor., 1766, Benj. Xnlting of 

■d. Martha, b. 12 Julj, 1750: m. 3 Dec., 1772, GQbert Dixon of 

t£. H"- -. b. 25 XoT., 1752; m. Abijab Mosber. 

J<:»XA5 V A p. V T~M was one of the first two Vamum brothers. 
James being the other, to leave his native town to live else- 
where. He settled in West Groton. afterwards Pepperell, on 
his marriage to Mary Sheple. his first wife, who was then 19 
vears of age. Here he married Lydia Boyden, his second wife. 
He was a farmer and his land is still in the hands of his de- 
scendants. He was chosen one of the assessors of Pepperell 
at its first Town Meeting, 17 Jan., 1742. He died intestate, 
and his son, Capt. Jonas Tamom, Jr., was appointed adminis- 
trator of his estate. 18 May, 1785. 

13. Abraham Tarxx::m* (John,' Samu^* Gtorg^), b. 10 
May, 1710; d. 1760; m. (1 ) -Qct. ye 9, 1736, Abraham Yar- 
nnm of Draucutt entered with me his Intention of marriadge to 











Abigail Hardy of Boxford." John Varnum, T. C. She died 
2 Feb. 1737-8. 
One Child: 
i. Abigail," b. 3 July, 1737 ; in. Eobert Blood Jr. of Dunstable. 

He married (2) Eachel ; died 1748. 

Seven Children: 
i. Elizabeth, b. 26 April, 1741 ; m. Cyrus Baldwin of Chelms- 
Jonathan, b. 31 Oct., 1742; m. Anna East. 
Asa, b. 14 Dec., 1743; m. Abigail East. 
Abraham, b. 6 Apr., 1745 ; d. in infancy. 
"William, b. 19 Oct., 1746; m. Sarah Colburn. 
Abiah, b. 19 Oct., 1746; d. 30 Sept., 1750. 
Benjamin, b. 29 Mar., 1747-8; d. in early youth. 

He married (3) " May ye 20, 1748, Abraham Varnum of 
Draucutt entered with me his Intention of Marriadge to Rebecca 
Shead of Dracutt." Josiah Richardson, T. C. She was living 
m 17G0. 

Two Children: 
i. Lucy, b. 31 July, 1751; m. 6 Dec, 1770, Jonas Colburn of 

ii. Sarah, b. 14 April, 1756; m. (int.) 10 Dec, 1794, William 
Doble .of Dracutt. 

Abraham Yaexum, husbandman, lived and at the age of 
fifty years died, on lands which had been set off to him on the 
division of his father's estate, who died without will. His son 
William Avent first to Thornton, X. H., and afterwards to 
Peachara, Vt., and his descendants are to be found among the 
Yarnums of Peacham, anxl the West. His will dated "22 
Dec. in the year of his Majesty's reign annoque Domini 1758," 
is filed at the Probate records at East Cambridge. In it he 
leaves his wife Rebecca " one full third part of my estate during 
her natural life"; to his daughter " Abigail wife of Robert 


Blood of Dunstable, 13£ 2s. Lawful silver money, in full of 
what I have already given her"; to his daughters Lucy and 
Sarah " V.i£ 6s. 8d. in full for their portions"; to his four sons 
Jonathan, Asa, William and Benjamin "all the remainder of 
my estate apportioning to my eldest son Jonathan a dubble 
share, or as much as any two of his brethren, and that the 
other three shall have equal." 

He makes his brother John sole executor. The witnesses 
to this will were Samuel, Amos and Thomas Coburn, and John 

An Inventory of his estate made Aug. ye 2d 1766 showed 

Dracutt Mar ye 16 1761, On petition of Jona: Varnum a 
minor about 18 years old, Asa Varnum about 17, William in 
his IMh year, sons of Abraham Varnum late of Dracutt, Mr. 
Jonathan Pailiam was made guardian. 

(East Cambridge Probate Becords.) 

B}' the non-mention of Benjamin, 7th child, it would appear 
that he died shortly after his father. 

14. James Varnum' (John,^ Samuel- George^), b. 4 Sept. 
1712; d. 1756; m. 26 Oct. 1742, Abigail, dau. of Dea. Eben- 
ezer Dearborn of Chester, X. II. She was born 17 Jan., 1721, 
and outlived her husband, administrating on his estate. She 
afterwards married John Kobie of Chester. 
Seven Children: 
i. Abigail,' b. 6 Oct., 1743; d. 4 Jan., 1802; m. (1), 17(!2, 
Ezckicl, 8on of Capt. John Lane, who was b. 4 July, 1730. 
He fell at the Battle of Bennington, Aug. IG, 1777 ; m. (2) 
Peter Hills. 

22. ii. Janits, b. 14 Feb., 1744-5; m. Anna Robie. 

23. iii. Julin, h. 23 Sept., 1746; m. Elizabeth Patten, 
iv. Pfter, 1). 12 Dee. 1748; m. and left descendants. 
V. Josiah, b. 1750. 


vi. Mary, b. 1752 ; m. Peter Moores, and went to Maiiip. 
vii. Sarah, b. 29 Jan., 1754; d. 4 Sept., 1713; m. Moses, son of 
Winthrop Sargt-nt. 

James Yarxum was b un in Dracutt and eaily went to 
Chester, N. H., near which place there are now living (1906) 
some of his descendants. "In IT-il at a Town meeting held 
the last Thursday in IVIarch, John Telford and James Varnum 
were chosen to take the invoice of the heads and e.states of the 
whole town. They made report to the Secretary of State, 
which document is in the excellent handwriting of Mr. Yarnura. 
He bought of Elizabeth, widow of Sampson Undei-hill, house 
lot number 28 on the "Ten Rod way." The fleeting House 
sat on the said way. In a diagram of the old Meeting House 
as seated in 1751, when the ground or "second tier " pews 
were sold, there were the following allotments: 

A, Minister's Pew. B, Deacon's seat. C, James Varnum's.* 
In 1749 James Yarnnm was an ensign in a Chester Compan3^ 
In the same year he became one of the selectmen of the town. 
He died at the early age of forty-four years. 

15. Parker Varnum* (John,'* Jolin^ Samuel,^ George^), 
born 17 Feb., 17i6-7, died 18 Dec. 1824, m. (1) Dorcas Brown, 
daughter of Timothv and Dorcas (Osgood) Brown of Tewks- 
bury,Mass., born 3f Mar. 1794, died 29 April, 1800. 

• Chase Hist, of Chester, pp. 40, 73. 

Weeden "Social & Economic Hist of. N. E." says, p. 18: "The Meeting House was at 
all times the center of social life. Pews were -neU established by 1700, though they were 
generally assigned by a committee or by a vote of the whole congregation to particular per- 
sons. This seating of the congregation was the most significant of all of our customs. The 
rules for the designation and discrimination of seats, were formed after the minute considera- 
tion of age, rank, office, estate lists, and of relative amounts furnished towards building the 
house or towards the minister's salary." 

Chaucer, in his " Parson," says " God hath ordained that some folk should be more 
high in estate and in degree, and some folk more low, and that every one should be served in his 
estate and in his degree. Were it not for this the estate of the holy Church might not have 
been, nor common profit kept, nor rest on earth." 

parkek: fifth generation. 71 

Fifteen Children: 

i. John/ b. 12 Jan., 1773; d. 10 Feb., 177G. 



Polly, b. 30 Sept., 1774; d. 17 Aug., 1798. She was affi- 
anced to Rev. Caleb Bradley of Dracutt, a congregational 
minister, who erected a tombstone to her memory, now stand- 
ing in Woodbine cemetery. He afterwards settled in Port- 
land, Me., where he became a noted preacher. 
Dorcas, b. 2« Sept., 1776; d. 10 Mar., 1787. 
24. iv. John, b. 25 June, 1778; m. (1) Mary Saltonstall ; (2) Mrs- 
Mary P. Varnum. 
V. DoUy, b. 12 Mar., 1789 ; d. 21 May, 1796. 
vi. Clarissa, b. 27 Jan., 1782; d. 5 Sept., 1862; m. 2 Aug., 
1804, Caleb, son of Caleb and Rebekah (B\ost) Butler of Pel- 
ham, N. H., b. 13 Sept., 1776, d. 7 Oct., 1854. "He 
was widely known and respected for his sterling integrity, 
moral independence, courage, simplicity and modesty. His 
familiarity with the highways of Middlesex Co., upon the con- 
struction and improvement of which he was an authority, caused 
him to be selected by the Governor in 1826 as chairman of the 
first Board of Highway Commissioners of the County." As 
the Hon. Abbott Lawrence once said of him, " A sweet aroma 
hangs about his name, in his love of truth and justice, and in his 
integrity of character in all the relations of life." (Ancient 
Middlesex, Gould.) 

Eight Children (Butler) : 

Henrietta, b. 28 May, 1805; d. 22 Nov. 1864; m. 

(1) A'ath'l Littlefield ; (2) Timo : Atkinson. 
Charles Varnum, b. 2 Dec, 1806; d. 16 Feb., 1831. 
George, b. 14 Feb., 1808; d. 12 June, 1835. 
Susan, b. 19 Sept., 1809; 24 Sept., 1826. 
Rebekah, b. 28 May, 1811 ; d. 6 Sept., 1844; m. Peter 

William, b. 21 Aug., 1812; d. 24 Oct., 1839. 
Clarissa, b. 11 July, 1814; d. unm. 22 Dec, 1875. 
Frances, b. 12 Oct., 1822 ; d. 26 Dec, 1892 ; m. Francis 

A. Brooks. 


vii. Sarah Bowdoin, b. 16 Jan., 1784; d. 15 Sept., 1822, buried 
in Mayhew, Miss. ;m. 24 Dec, 181(3, in New Orleans, La., 
to Rev. Cyrus Kingsbury, missionary to the Choctaws. A niece 
(Mrs. Sarah B. Eaton) says of her: "Soon after marriage 
they went to the Mississippi as missionaries to the Indians. 
To this wild life, she was in a measure fitted, as from early 
youth she was a skilful horsewoman, and could catch and 
mount a horse from natural skill or training. 

To this quality she added those efiicient accomplishments 
which make a New England maiden a noted housewife. She 
used to cut and make the garments of the family when a mem- 
ber of her fatiier's liousehold, and they were all well-made 
and well-fitting." 

Two Children (Kingsbury) : 
Cyrus, b. 2 Jan., 1820. 
"* John Parker, b. 25 Sept., 1821 ; m. H. Maria Hotchkiss. 

viii. Phebe Parker, b. 15 Dec, 1785 ; d. 30 July, 1849 ; m. 8 Dec, 
1807, William Farwell, son of James and Sarah (FarweU) 
Brazer of Groton, b. 8 Dec, 1781 ; d. 17 Nov., 1835. 
Nine Children (Brazer) : 

Mary Saltonstall, b. 17 Oct., 1818; d. 8 Oct., 1829. 
Sarah Farwell, b. 5 Feb., 1810; d. 17 Apr., 1897; m. 

27 Nov., 1845, W. P. Eaton. 
James, b. 29 Apr., 1811; d. 1 Sept., 1901; m. Mary 

Ellen, b. 20 Mar., 1813; d. unm. 3 Sept., 1876. 
Elizabeth Varnum, b. 8 July, 1815; d. unm. 14 Dec, 

William Phillips, b. 25 Aug., 1820; m. 24 Oct., 1854, 

Mary Fletcher. 
Henrietta, b. 15 Nov., 1823; d. 4 Sept., 1824. 
John, b. 4 Sept., 1825. 

Charles Edward, b. 19 Aug., 1827: d. unm. 18 Jan., 


ix. Dorcas, b. 15 June, 1788; d. 18 Sept., 1865; m. 15 Mar., 

1810, Oliver, son of Josiah and Mary (Corey) Stearns of 

Lunenburg, who graduated from Harvard College in 1808. 


He became a lawyer and settled in Amesbury, Mass., which 
town he represented in the State Lcf^islature in 1819. He 
was b. 4 Mar., 178(5; d. 7 June, 1826. 
Eight Children (Stearns) : 

Dorcas Ann, b. 2 Aug., 1811; d. 21 June, 1859; m. 

15 Sept., 1832, Freeman Huggins of Saco, Me. 
Charles Oliver, b. 8 Nov., 1813; m. 10 Sept., 1833, 

Adeline Eastman of Sali8l)ury. 
Susan Maria Corey, b. 29 Dec, 1815 ; m. 6 July, 1845, 

Joseph Chandler of Winthrop, Me. 
George Parker, b. 29 Sept., 1817 ; d. unm. 20 Apr., 1845. 
Luther, b. 17 Aug., 1820; m. Mary Alvord. 
William Henry, b. 22 Mar., 1822; d. July, 1901; m. 

7 Dec., 1847, Sarah A. Durant of Northampton. 
Laurens, b. 7 Jan., 1825; d. unm. 21 May, 1846. 
Mary Elizabeth, m. 19 Apr., 1849, Wm. H. Hull of 
Lowell; b. Cambridge, Vt., 11 Jan., 1824; d. in 
Lowell, 19 May, 3 Feb., 1903. 
25. X. Parker, Jr., b. 1790; m. Martlia McCoy. 

xi. Susan, b. 7 May, 1792 ; d. 20 Feb., 1833 ; m. 27 Apr., 1827, 
Benj. Sherburn, son of Willard L. and Susan (Sherburn) 
Coburn of Dracutt, b. 1802, d. 13 Mar., 1863. 
One Child (Coburn) : 

Benj: Varnum, b. 31 Dec, 1828; d. 20 July, 1833. 
xii. James, b. 19 May, 1794; d. unm. 18 Nov., 1870. 
xiii. Charles, b. 20 Jan., 1796; d. 1 Feb., 1796. 
xiv. Charles, b. 1797; d. 1 Jan., 1798. 
XV. Lucretia, b. 1799; d. unm. 21 Feb., 1852. 

He married (2) 2i Nov., 1801, Abiali, daughter of Timothy 
and Phebc (Frye) Osgood of Andover, born 13 Dec, 1747, 
died 17 Sept., 1825. 

Abiah (Osgood) Varnum outlived her husband one year, 
leaving no issue. She was buried by his side in the " Wood- 
bine" cemetery, on Varnum Ave. ller will is filed at the 
Probate Records, East Cambridge, and is of much interest as 


giving a remarkable inventory of wearing apparel, the ward- 
robe of one of ye olden-time dames of Dracutt. 

It is dated 19 May, 1825, and bequeathes "to Susan and 
Lucretia, daughters of my late husband, my household furni- 
ture." The inventory referred to is as follows: 

One chaise $24; two Bridge (Pawtiicket) Shares $360 ; One damask 
silk gown & skirt $7,50; One silk purlease $3,50; one woolen do $4; 
One gingham gown $1,50; one striped silk do $1,50; one purple silk do 
$6 ; one black silk do with skirt $1,50 ; one crape gown $6 ; one bombast 
do $1 ; two flannel petticoats $1 ; One satin mantle $4 ; two dimity petti- 
coats $1 ; one black silk shawl $2 ; one cotton do $1,50; one muslin do 
50c; one bandanna handkerchief 75c ; four pocket handkerchiefs $1 ; three 
aprons $1 ; four chimmee $2 ; six pairs shoes $3 ; three pairs do $1,50 ; 
one bonnet and veil $2,50 ; six silver spoons $6 ; two large silver do $4 ; 
6 dozen plates $2. 


By Maj: Atkinson C. Varnum.'' 

"Parker Yarnuni was an extensive farmer for his day, hav- 
ino- been the owner of several hundred acres of land which he 
cultivated with a practical knowledge of good husbandry. He 
was a man of broad mind, progressive in his ideas, and liberal 
in his support of all private and public enterprises. He was a 
Justice of the Peace, and a sort of Ti-ial Justice, and Arbitra- 
tor for many miles around Dracutt. It was said of him that 
more cases which came before him were settled by mutual con- 
sent, than were tried ; and the name of " Peacemaker " was 
universally applied to him. He had a wonderfully happy fac- 
ulty of restoring good feeling between parties at variance, so 
that in most cases they went home reconciled and satisfied. 
On his tombstone, in the " Woodbine Cemetery," near the land 
he lived upon, is this just sentiment: "Blessed are the Peace- 

6 ( ) U I R E H A R K K K \' A k N V M 

pakkek: fifth geneeation. to 

"With his brothers James and Jonas he was a member of 
Capt. i'eter Col)urn's Company of Minule-men, of which he 
was sei'geant, and his consin Ebenezer Varnnm 2d Lieutenant, 
which responded to the Lexington alarm (Alarm Rolls, State 
Archives, vol. xii.) in 1775. He was a Minute-man of the 
Revolution* and with the Dracutt Company under the com- 
mand of Capt. Joseph Bradley Varnum (his cousin) marched 
in Oct., 1777, to reinforce the Northern army. He was present 
at the surrender of Bnrgoyne at Saratoga, and his company 
acted as guard in convoying the British and Hessian prisoners 
to Boston. His father, John Varnum, in his journal refers to 
a suspicion of treachery in the paroling of said prisoners not 
to serve again during the war, which suspicion led the Conti- 
nental Congress to detain said prisoners and they were finally 
marched 700 miles to Maryland and Virginia, where they were 
kept for five years. 

He was a Justice of the Peace from 1787 to the year of his 
death in 1^2-1. He represented his native town from 1788 to 
1792 at the General Court, which at that dali' held its sessions 
in the Old State House, succeeding Joseph Bradley Varnum, 
who became State Senator. 

When the citizens in the westerly part of the town, including 
aljout half the tuwnslii[), withdrew from the original church and 
established what is now known as the " Pawtucket Church and 
Society," in 1707, Mr. Varnum's name stood at the head of the 
petition, and his was the first name among the Incorporators. 
He was elected one of its Deacons in Nov., 1819. In the be- 
ginning the Church drew heavily on its Society to pay for a 

•In Xovemher, 1774, the Provincial Congress of MnssaoliUsetts iiuthorized the enrolment 
of 12,000 men in the province, who should be prepared to take the field at a minute's warn- 
ing. Prior to this there had been local organizations of the kind all over the province. It 
needed l)Ut the authority of law to accomplish a general enrolment. Fathers and sons, en- 
couraged by mothers, wives and sisters, received lessons in the art of war, and wore made 
ready for immediate action, when called upon. This army was, from the conditions of its 
enlistment, called Jliuute-men. (Harper's Encyclopedia of American History.) 


place of worship, and to supply the pulpit. It was not until 
1821 that a settled minister could be afforded. During all this 
time the house of Squire Parker Yarnura was open for the en- 
tertainment of ministers free of expense, who were employed 
as stated supply. 

He was one of the earliest projectors, and one of the incor- 
porators, of the "Middlesex Merrimack River Bridge" com- 
monly known as the " Pawtucket bridge " as it spanned the 
Pawtucket falls of that river. It was built in 1792, and was 
the earliest bridge across the Merrimack. 

Mr. Yarnum was clerk to the Bridge Corporation up to 1805, 
when he succeeded Col. Loammi Baldwin as President, which 
office he held at the time of his decease. The building of this 
structure was a great undertaking for that day, and those who 
were engaged in it were men of sterling mei-it. It was the 
means of opening travel from Yermont and New Hampshire 
through Dracutt and Chelmsford to Boston. Thousands of 
teams loaded with pork, butter, cheese, and all kinds of country 
pi-oduce, passed over the bridge for many years, and even after 
the steam railroads cheapened methods of transportation. The 
Pawtucket Bridge was especially a Yarnum enterprise. To the 
two sons of Lt. John Yarnum, Parker and James, may be given 
the credit of its inception and its successful construction. Both 
labored with their hands in the building of the same, and both, 
with Jonathan Yarnum, their cousin, were large stockholders. 
Among their assets, after their decease, were the original shares 
of this successful company. 

It was the custom in ye olden time, when any enterprise of 
physical labor was being earned out, to liberally supply spirits. 
On several occasions a few mugs of flip and toddy are chai-ged 
in the expenses of the Co., and at one meeting of the Directors, 
a vote was passed that any person absent at the next meeting, 
should pay a fine equal to furnishing two mugs of flip to each 


>t:v-oG:-3«rA^o^G-£'^J S-S^G r>*J 





.^^>;^ ^^^i:-;.^ ^\^-kJ ^.r-^y^ ^^y. 

c ° 
C > 






paekee: fifth generation. 77 

One of his grandchildren — Mrs. Sarah Brazer Eaton — re- 
lates the following anecdotes of him: "My mother and aunts 
have often told me the story of his pity for a poor slave g'irl 
who had fled from her tyrannical master, and sought conceal- 
ment at his house. He took her to his granary, and inverting 
an empty hogshead placed her beneath it, strewing the top with 
grain. Her master looked diligently for her, passing his hand 
through the grain in several casks. The girl, Phyllis, until her 
death, remained in the family of her benefactor, refusing any 

" During the winters before the bridge was built by him, it 
was customary to cross the river above the falls, on the ice. 
Sometimes this was so thin as to be dangerous. Grandfather, 
aroused by outcries, would take his farm hands with appliances 
for rescue, and thus saved undoubtedly many from a watery 

" One of my aunts, when a child, was playing outside the 
house, near the front door, when one day she was accosted by 
a traveller on horseback, who inquired : ' Is this a public house? ' 
'Yes,' she innocently answered. He, alighting, ordered one 
of my uncles to grain his horse, and went into the house for 
dinner. Grandfather suggested his dining with the family, 
which he did, ordering his food in a percmptoiy manner. 
Dinner over, he asked for his bill, and when told there was no 
charge, was greatly embarrassed. ' Why, that little girl told 
me that this was a public house,' he exclaimed." 

To Squire Parker Varnum is due the credit of writing in 
1818, when he was 71 j'ears of age, the first account of the 
Varnum family, a singularly correct histor)^ given in detail at 
the beginning of this volume. 

Extracts from John Varnum's journal: 

"1 Nov 1777. Parker pressed out 10 barrells of Cyder. Expect 3 
more so as to make 110 barrells.'" 


"10 Mar 1778, made proposals to my sons Parker & James that tliey 
should have my lands to the halves, they kee[)ing the fences in good re- 
pair, and the bushes cut in the pasture (except the pasture which I under- 
take to manage myself) and they to carry on the same according to the 
rules of good husbandry, and to pay one half the rates, which they promise 
to perform." 

" 14 April 1778, I gave Parker §30. bill to buy cloth. He went to Mr. 
Poores (Andover) Bought 8 Yards at $44 per yard of all wool cloth." 

"3 Sept 1780, Parker at Newburyport. Sold the great sow, 400 lbs 
for $1392, which in lawful money is 417£ 12s. He carried half a hog 
of 100 lbs of his own, and sold it for $4 per lb. His poultry at S3 per 
lb, Indian meal at $3.5 per bushel, Bought green baize for a gown at $50 
per yard." 

16. James Yarxum^ (John,'* JoJtu,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 
8 Sept., 1747; dkd 2 Dec, 1832; married (1) Prudence, 
daughter of Major William and Tabitha (Colburn) Hildreth, 
of Dracutt. boi-n G Nov., 1753, died 18 Oct., 1775. 
One child: 

i. Prudence," b. 10 Sept., 1775; d. 3 Apr., 1860; m. 26 Nov., 
1801, Henj. Gale of Concord, N. H., b. 5 June, 1769. 
Eight children (Gale) : 

James Varuum, b. 18 Aug., 1804; d. in infancy. 
James Varnum, b. 2 Nov., 1806 ; m. Caroline Gibson. 
Ruth, b. 23 Sept., 1808; d. 3 Oct., 1809. 
Ruth Carter, b. 23 Aug,, 1810; m. John Gibson. 
Eleanor Varnum, b. 16 Sept., 1812 ; m. Elisha Morrill. 
John Varnum, b. 5 Apr., 1814; ra. Phillis M. Marshall. 
Benj. Franklin, b. 13 Apr., 1814; m. Julia E. IMorse. 
Levi Bartlett, b. 17 May, 1821; m. Anna F. Eaton. 

He was married (2), 12 Feb., 1793, to Eleanor, daughter of 
James and Naomi (Frye) Bridges of Andover, by Rev, Solo- 
mon Aiken of Dracut, born 8 Oct., 1758, died 22 Feb., 1801. 

Two children : 

i. Eleanor, b. 6 Mar., 1795 ; d. 5 July, 1796. 

Col. Tames Varntm' 


ii. Eleanor, b. 16 Sept., 1796; d. 4 Apr., 1825: m. 21 Sept., 
1821, Samuel A., eon of Gen. Simon and Molly (Varaum) 
Coburn of Dracutt. 

Two children (Coburn) : 

Eleanor Bridges, b. 20 Feb., 1822 ; d. 1836. 
Mary Jane, 1). 24 Nov., 1824; d. 1857; m. .Tames 

He married (3) (int.) 27 Mar., 1802, Martha, widow of Hugh 
McAdams of Greenfield, N. H.,born 1756, died 21 Dec, 1839. 
Buried at Greenfield. No issue. 

" Col. James Yakxum spent the early part of his life in his 
father's family in the business of farming. By his own exer- 
tions, — for at that time there was very little opportunity to 
acquire an education, — he succeeded in getting a tolerably good 
common-school education, which added to his untiring perse- 
verance enabled him to support with dignity and usefulness all 
the stations of life he was called upon to fulfil. 

On April 19, 1775, in the 28th year of his age, when the 
Lexington alarm was given, he marched with many Dracut 
Minute-men, who were actively alive to the issues of that day. 
He was a sergeant in Capt. Peter Coburn's company at the 
battle of Bunker Hill, and in that engagement had the top 
of his hat shot off, and got two bullets through his jacket. He 
joined the Continental Army, and was made a lieutenant, his 
commission having been signed by John Hancock, and con- 
tinued in active service until April, 1880, when he received an 
honorable discharge. He was made captain April 19, 1776; 
paymaster in 1778, in Col. Michael Jackson's 7th Massachusetts 

He was in many important engagements in the Revolutionary 
War, — at Bunker Hill, White Plains, Saratoga, at Monmouth, 
and at Trenton. It was near the latter place where he was 
engaged in one of the most daring and dangerous expeditions 


achieved during' the war. A captain with 30 men was detailed 
to remove the planks and stringers of a bi-idge and throw them 
into the river, to prevent the Jiritish Army, then rapidly ap- 
proaching the town, from crossing at that point. One officer 
was reluctant to perform the deed, saying that it was impossi- 
ble to do it without being killed, as the British were then in 
sight on a hill beyond. Capt. Varnum volunteered his ser- 
vices, provided he could have his fine company of men, 64 in 
number. The officer who was sent with the order observed to ! 

him that ' 30 men are enough to be killed. I have this from j 

Gen. Washington's own lips.' Under these unpi'opitious and 
dangerous circumstances, Capt. Varnum set out, knowing that 
his men would stand or fall with him. They were so expedi- 
tious in destroying the bridge, that as the cavalry of the enemy 
appeared on the opposite bank, they threw off the last stringer. 
They made their way back under a shower of balls with the 
loss of but one man, who fell into the river and was drowned.* 

On leaving the army, Col. Yarnum returned to his native 
town and to his farm life. He was called upon to assist in 
putting down the domestic insurrection known as ' Shay's Re- 
bellion,' commanding a company of State militia." — Obituary 
notice, 8 Dec, 1832, Lowell Daily Journal. 

In private life Col. Yarnum was an affectionate and indul- 
gent parent, a kind husband, a valuable citizen. 

He married three wives, and was wont to remark facetiously 
that " first I married for love, second for beauty, and third for 
wealth," and was successful in all his matrimonial ventures. 
He and his brother Jonas, as survivors of the battle of Bunker 
Hill, attended on invitation -of the Commonwealth of Massa- 
chusetts at the laying of the corner stone of the monument in 

• Rev. Edward Everett Hale, in his " Memories of a Hundred Years," page 49, refers to 
this event most interestingly, and says that it used to be mentioned by Jared Sparks in his 
lectures on the Revolutionary War. A correspondent of his at Princeton, N. J., says that 
the bridge referred to was at said place. 

JAMES : rrFTii generation. 81 

1825, when Daniel Webster made his thrilling reference to the 
patriots who had survived and were present. 

His father, John Yarnum, says of him in his journal: 

"23 Feb 1777. 

My son James returned home from ye Army at ye Jerseys abt 8 in the 
evening, Hearty & well & in high 8])irit8. Was all Greatly Rejoiced. 
Confirmed yc News of sundj-y Smart Engagements, he was in & witness 

" 14 Apr. Training at Maj : Samuel Varnums. Capt James attended 
to trie to enlist men for ye wars, without success." 

"16 Apr. Training at Maj: Joseph Varnums. Capt James attended, 
Inlisted two." 

" 5 May, Capt James men here on their journey to Concord to pass 
muster. Ten of them passed ; two refused." 

" 26 May, Capt James went to Dunstable on Invitation to raise men, 
enlisted none." 

" 28 May 1778, My son Capt James this morning set out for Cambridge 
to Draw (luns iSc Acoutrements & Clothing. Dracutt has turned out its 
full (^uota for the three years and three months." 

".31 May do, Capt James returned from Camlirldge. Brought home 
his 2nd Capt Commission from the Congress, Dated ye 1st January last 
signed by John Hancock President." 

" 18 Oct do, Kecd a letter from my son James, dated at yc Camp near 
Stillwater Oct 7. Gave Intelligence that Burgoyne Was retreating and 
was Greatly harrassed. My son with a part of our Army has had a Smart 
Ingagement with part of Burgoynes Army on ye 6th, Drove ye Enemy 
from their lines, killed and took great numbers. 200 taken, killed un- 
certain, took 8 field pieces a great number of tents, waggons baggage, 


"31 May 17711. My son James sometimes here, sometimes in Boston 
waiting for money for the Regiment to which he belongs. He could not 
receive the money. He was chosen Paymaster for Colo : Michael Jack- 
eons Regiment." 

"22 June do. Ca])t James set out for the Army at West Point. 
Carried Considerable sums of Continental Bills for his Regiment. I gave 
him my Great sorril liorse and while he was here lent iiim $60. which I 
gave him when he went away." 


" 17 Apr 1780. My 8on the Capt returned from the Army Brave and 
well. In high spirits with design to tarry at home. Left all friends well. 
All generally rejoiced at his safe return." 

"3 May 1781. Paid Capt James $200 I borrowed. Bought Capt 
James military Coat. Paid him $800. for the same." 

The will of Col : Vanium is filed at East Cambridge, having 
been made 7 Nov., 1825, seven years before his decease. In it 
he gives to " my beloved wife Martha, my horse & chaise and 
all my household fui-niture for her own disposal; also the use, 
improvement and income of one third part of my real and per- 
sonal estate for and during her natural life," and divides his 
estate, real and personal, so that G/8ths of it shall, after his 
daughter Prudence Gale shall have enjoyed the use of it 
during her life, pass to her children: James Varnum, Ruth 
Coburn, Eleanor Varnum, John Yarnum, Benj: Franklin, and 
Levi B. Gale. The remaining 2/8ths he devises to his two 
grandchildren: Eleanor Bridges Coburn and Mary Jane Co- 
burn, children of his late daughter Eleanor. 

An inventory of his estate, made Jan. 15, 1833, shows him to have died 
possessed of — 

Kealty $12,194.00 

Personalty 8,967.99 


His first wife. Prudence Hildreth, was buried in the Hildreth 
Burial Ground, Dracutt. His body was placed in the vault of 
Mr. Phineas Whiting in the little cemetery near the Pawtucket 

17. Jonas Yarxum^ (John,* John^ Samuel,^ Oeorge^), born 
11 July, 1752; died 15 Apr., ISSi; married 21 Feb., 1782, 
Polly, daughter of William and Mehitable Parker of Dracutt, 
and granddaughter of Rev. Thos. Parker, the first minister of 
Dracutt, born 25 June, 1757, died 29 Nov., 1831. 


Five children: 
2(5. i. Jonas, Jr.," b. 13 Apr., 1785; ni. (1) Hannah Fo.x, (2) Eliza 

=?7. ii. William Parker, b. 27 Feb., 1787 ; m. Mary Park, 
iii. Bryant, b. 15 May, 1794; il. 23 July, 1791. 
iv. Nathaniel, b. u'july, 1795; d. unm. 12 Apr., 1883. He 
lived on the paternal acres in Dracutt, occupying the house 
built by his father for his bride in 1781. He was a farmer 
and contractor. JNIuch of the foundation work of the Lowell 
mills was laid by him. He was buried in the "Oakland" 
Cemetery, Pawtuckctville. 
V. Polly, b. 29 Nov., 1783 ; d. unm. 30 Sept., 1862. She made 
her home with her brother, and was buried by his side in the 
same cemetery. 

Jonas Varnum was a Tanner, and lived on land beqneathed 
him b}' his father. He Avas a loyal and patriotic man; a private 
in Capt. Peter Coburn's Co. at the battle of Bunker Hill, with 
his brother James, who became a captain in the Continental 
army. In " Coat Rolls,'' Massachusetts State Archives, vol. 57, 
there is an order for a bounty coat for Jonas Varnum, Capt. 
Coburn's Co., dated Cambridge, 27 Sept., 1775. His name 
appears also in "Muster Kolls," vol. xii, p. 25, and vol. xv, 
p. 10, for pay for Sept. and Oct., 1775; in "Enlistment Rolls," 
vol. xiv, p. 60, for 3 months 13 days service, 26 April, 1775, 
and in receipt for advance j)ay 22 June, 1775, "Coat Rolls," 
vol. XXXV, p. 40. It also appears as sergeant in Capt Zach. 
Wright's Co.. Col. Brook's regiment, at White Pkuns, 31 Oct., 
1776, "Mu.ster Rolls," vol. xxiv, p. 139. He was one of the 
Minute-men of the Revolution, and served 42 days as sergeant 
in Capt. Joseph Bradley Varnum's Co., which was drawn in 
Sept., 1777, to mai'ch to reinforce the northern anny, in which 
company was his brother Parker. This was a i)art of the 
movement which led to the surrender of Burgoyne on the 17 


Oct., 1777. The town of Dracutt, on 2 April, 1777, "Voted 
16 shillings to Jonas Varnum for 3 bayonetts for his family as 

He was 2d Lieutenant llth Co., Gth Middlesex regt., Joseph 
Bradley Varnum, Captain, "Militia Rolls," vol. xxviii, jjp. 
15, 42. In 1825, he and his brother James, as survivors of the 
battle, attended on invitation of the Commonwealth of Massa- 
chusetts the ceremony of the laying of the corner stone of the 
Bunker Hill monument. 

His father, John Varnum, saj's in his journal: "18 April 
1781, Ingaged in assisting Jonas in liaising his House. 
Raised the same without damage. Got done in good season. 
Returned about sunsetting Supped & Spent a pleasant evening. 
The people was as follows: Capt Wilson, Capt Peter Coburn, 
Capt Russell, Capt Asa Richardson, Lt Ebenezer Varnum, 
Lts Michal & William Hildreth, Messrs. Jonathan & Tom 
Varnum, Hezekiah Coburn, Dr Abbott, Ezra Coburn, Moses 
Richardson, Matthew Parker, Tim: Williams & Jona: Perham." 

As to his marriage, he says: "Wednesday 21 Feb 1782. 
My son Jonas was this day married to Miss Polly Parker by 
me at my House abt 2 oc afternoon. Company present Messrs 
Samuel Coburn & his sons Hezekiah & Samuel, & their wives, 
Bradstreet & Nathaniel Coburn, Matthew Parker & wife & his 
sons Thomas & Matthew, Capt Peter Cobui-n, Jabesh Coburn 
& Avife, Abijah Hill, Jonas Shattuck, & our own family. After 
dinner Jonas & Polly went home to their own House." 

This house still stands, an excellent example of an eighteenth 
century mansion, and is occupied by one of the descendants 
of Jonas, as it was by his son and daughter during their lives. 
It is located in Dracutt, oh the Mammoth Road, about three 
miles from Pawtucket bridge. 

Jonas Varnum made application for pension 12 Sept., 1832. 
He was buried in the " Woodbine Cemetery," Pawtucketville. 


? Ki> 




18. JoxAS Varnum' {Jonas* John? Samuel,^ George^), 
born 9 Jan., 1737; died 7 Apr., 1817; married 29 Dec, 17G1, 
Ecbecca, daughter of Lt. John and Rachel Spaulding of 
Chelmsford, born 12 Feb., 1740, died 11 Feb., 180G. 

Three children: 

28. i. John," h. 26 Oct., 17(53; ni. Eunice Gilson. 
ii. Kcbokali, b. 26 Jan., 1768; d. 27 Mar., 1776. 

29. iii. Jonus Spaulding, b. 1 Mar., 1774; ni. Xancy Shipley. 

Jonas Varxum was one of the leadei-s in opposition to the 
Stamj) Act, and one of the foremost in the destruction of tea 
in his native town (Pepperell). Tradition says there was a 
heap of tea as " large as a tumble of hay on the Common." 
One Mr. Shattuck brought a pound of tea, and had it burned, 
the only tea he had ever bought in his life. 

Jonas was captain of militia in Pepperell, and a farmer by 

19. Jonathan Varnum^ (Ahinliam,* Johu,^ Sanmd,^ 
George'), born 31 Oct., 1742; died 17 Oct., 1801; married 
(int. 24 Nov., 1764) Anna, daughter of Joseph East, formerly 
of Boston, l)orn 1740, died 24 March, 1795. 

Eight children: 

i. Rachel, b. 4 Dec, 1765; m. (int.) 11 Dec, 1788, Thomas 

McDole of (loffstown, N. H. 

ii. Anna, b. 2'A Apr., 1767; m. Abbott of dlovcr, Vt. 

iii. Dolly, b. 23 May, 1769; m. Abraham Varnura, her cousin, of 

Peacham, Vt. 

30. iv. Jonathan, b. 31 Dec, 1771 ; m. Dolly Stevens. 

V. Mercy, 1). 30 May, 1774 ; ni. Robert McDole of Dracutt.«> IrV I i -• ' i t^,^ M-^y 

31. vi. Asa, b. 19 Dec, 1778; ni. Anna Moore, 
vii. Betsey, b. 20 July, 1780. 

viii. Diodaniia, b. 20 July, 1780; m. 10 Xov., 1805, Benj. Good- 
ing of Newport, Vt. 

He married (2) int. 7 May, 179G, Hannah Stevens of Ando- 
ver; died 20 Oct., 1818, aged 83 years. 


Jonathan "Vaenum was a farmer in Dracutt. In March, 
1760, then 18 years of age, he enlisted in Capt. "William Bar- 
ron's Co. of Concord to go to Crown Point, N. Y., to fight 
against the French and Indians. He served until Dec. 8 fol- 
lowing, at which date he was mustered out of service. In this 
company there were 14 Dracutt men, of which four were Co- 
burns. (Crown Point Muster Kolls, vol. 8, pp. 254, 255. Mass. 
State Archives.) Buried in Woodbine Cemetery (Pawtucket- 
ville), Lowell. 

20. Asa Varnum^ {Abraham* Jolin^ Samuel,^ Oeorge^), 
born 14 Dec, 1743; died at Peacham, Vt., 1788; married 31 
Dec, 1772, by Rev. Nathan Davis of Dracutt, to Abigail, 
daughter of Joseph East, sister to Anna East, whom his 
brother Jonathan took to wife. 

One child : 

Abigail,'^ b. 19 Sept., 1773. 

Asa Varnum is first mentioned in his brother William's 
day book, 12 June, 1773. Afterwards, Dec, 1776, his brother 
speaks of him as "my brother Asa lately deceased." As Wil- 
liam did not go to Thornton, N. H., until 1779, Asa probably 
died in Dracutt. Nothing is known as to his wife and daughter. 

21. William Yarnum^ {Abraham,'* John, ^ Samuel,- George^), 
born 19 Oct., 1746; died Jan., 1814; married (int.) 2 April, 
1768, to Sarah, daughter of Lt. Abraham Colburn, son of 
Ezra, who married Hannah, daughter of Samuel and Sarah 
(Langton) Varnum. She died 15 April, 1802. 

Ten children: 

i. Sarah, b. 23 Nov., 1768; ra. 11 Feb., 1785, Archibald Mc- 
32. ii. Abraham, b. 23 Aug., 1770; m. Dolly Varnum, his cousin. 

Dolly Varnum 

W'l/t of Abraham Varnum, of Peacham, Vt. 


iii. Dolly, b. 8 Feb., 1772; d. 8 Oct., 1850; m. 28 Dec, 178G, 
John McLellan of Thornton, X. H., b. in Scotland 1742, d. 
17 Mar., 1817. 
Thirteen children (McLellan), b. in Thornton: 

Elizabeth, b. 14 Apr., 1787; d. iinin. 27 Oct., 1827. 
Dorothy, b. 22 May, 1788; d. 29 May, 1815; m. A. 

Moses, b. 19 Aug., 1789; d. May, 1815; m. 

Aaron, b. 31 May, 1791; d. 28 Aug., 1878; m. Mary 

Daniel, b. 15 Mar., 1795 ; d. 23 Jan., 1863 ; m. Prudence, \ 
dau. of Abraham Varnum.' ' 

Rebecca, b. 9 Sept., 1798 ; d. Dec, 1839 ; m. John Hoyt. 
John, b. 26 July, 1800; d. unm. 8 Apr., 1837. 
William, b. 14 Feb., 1803 ; d. 20 Dec, 1869 ; m. Clarissa 

Sarah, b. 11 Feb., 1805; d. 4 July, 1839; m. Moses 

Hannah, b. 18 Nov., 1806 ; d. 1 July, 1839 ; m. Nathaniel 

Duncan, b. 2 Feb., 1809; d. 26 Aug., 1843; m. Sarah 

Joseph, b. 12 Feb., 1811 ; d. 23 July, 1881 ; m. Phidelia 

Benjamin, b. 18 Oct., 1813 ; d. 29 July, 1893 ; m. Emeline 
iv. Betsey, b. 4 Jan., 1774; m. Ebenezer Patterson. 
V. Ruth, b. 3 Oct., 1775 ; m. Ezekiel Aiken, 
vi. Abigail, b. 3 May, 1777 ; m. Nathaniel Wilson, 
vii. Mercy, b. 13 Nov., 1778; d. June, 1847 ; m. Stephen Good- 
enough of Peacham, Vt. 
Four children (Goodeuough) : 
Peter, lived in New York. 
Asa, lived in Danville, Vt. 
Phineas, b. 22 Dec, 1805. 
Jane, m. AVilson. 


33. viii. John, b. 16 ^lay, 1781 ; m. Mary Morse. 

34. ix. Pliinehas, b. li) June, 1783; m. Locada Blanchard. 

X. Rachel, b. 31 Jan., 1786; d. at Osceola, 111., 15 Jan., 1861 ; 
m. David Dana. Left children. 

William Yarxum was born in Dracutt, as were all of his 
children, np to and including Mercy. From entries in his day 
book, he removed, 7 Feb., 1779, to Thornton, K. H., named 
after Matthew Thornton, a man of great prominence in New 
Hampshire, who afterwards immortalized himself by signing 
the Declaration of Independence. He was then 36 years old. 
Here he lived ten years and acquired much landed property. 
His was among the lai-gest "minister's tax" in the town. 
He was Road Surveyor and laid out some of the town highways. 
He was known here in 1782 as Captain, and this title is in- 
scribed on his tombstone in Peacham. It is not of record that 
he perfoi-med military service, although undoubtedly he did, as 
his relatives of the same generation were all in the war of the 
Kevolution as Minute-men in the Continental army. In his 
day book he enters " Came to Peacham, Vt., 19 Mar., 1790." 
He became a prominent man there, active and influential in 
town affairs, holding the various offices an acceptable citizen is 
called upon to fill. He was one of 12 original members of the 
Congregational Society in Peacham, 14 April, 179-1. Six days 
later (20 April) his wife Sarah and their daughter-in-law Dolly 
Varnum became members also. Of his Yarnum descendants, 
two have their names inscribed on the monument erected to the 
men of Peacham who fought in the war for the Union. 


22. James Varnum* (James,* John,^ Samuel,^ George^), 
born 14 Feb., 1744/5; lived in Chester, N. H.; died 27 Nov., 
1827, at Stanstead, C. E.; married Annie, daughter of John 
Robie, his steji-father. She died in 1807. 
One child: 

35. Josiah," b. 5 Mar., 1781 ; m. Lucy Eowe. 


James Varniim with his brother John were Revohitionary 
soldiers. He ajipears on the Revolutionary muster rolls of the 
State of New Hampshire, and is credited to Candia. He was 
a subscriber to a resolution of 1-t Mar., 1776, " to cause all per- 
sons who are disaffected to the cause of America to be dis- 
armed." He also subscribed to a pledge, That " We will, to the 
latmost of our power, at the risk of our lives and fortunes, oppose 
with arms the hostile proceedings of the British fleets and 
armies against the American colonies." 

23. Joirs" Vaknum' {James* Jolin^ Samuel^ George^) , born 
23 Sept., 1746, in Candia, N. H.; died 8 June, 1803; married 
Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Patton of Raymond, N. H. 
Foiu' children: 

i. Polly, m. Samuel Emerson. 

ii. Peter, b. 8 May, 1791; d. unm. 17 Jan., 1860. 
iii. John, Jr., d. unm. 14 Nov., 1807. 

iv. Martha, d. 18.57 ; m. Alexander MeChire. She was his second 
wife. He was b. 11 Oct., 1773 ; d. 8 Feb., 1850. 
Four children (McClure) : 

Moses Varnuni, d. in California. 
Alexander, d. 1858. 
Frederic, d. 2 Feb., 1866. 

Joiiis'^ Yaexum lived in Candia, N". II. In the Revolutionary 
"War Rolls, State of New Hampshire (vol. i, p. 76), he is en- 
rolled as having enlisted as a private in Caj^t. Ilezekiah 
Hutchius' Co., Colonel James Reed's regiment: "John Var- 
num, husbandman, Candia, aged 28," and as having served 
from May 6 to Aug. 1, 1775, and drawn ])ay for 3 mos. 3 days 
amounting to £4 10s. Gd. He was with his legiraent at the 
battle of Bunker Hill, April 19, 1775, and was there wounded. 
Moore, in History of Candia (p. 70), states, that he was paid 


for losses at said battle £5 Is., being for 1 blanket, 1 gun, 1 
shirt, 1 coat, and 1 pack. The soldiers at that time furnished 
their own accoutrements, and were allowed for them. Lt. 
Ebenezer Varuum, his relative, was paid for loss in same battle. 
Lt. Ebenezer, James, Jonas, John of Dracutt, and John of 
Candia, all in the same battle, were fifth in descent from George 
Yarnum. It is further stated that he was with Gen. Nathaniel 
Stark's New Hampshire militia, at the battle of Bennington, 
where he was again wounded. He is enrolled among the Wil- 
ton, N". H., soldiers in 1776 (N. H. Eolls, vol. i, p. 303). 
He also appears of record in " Levies raised by the State of 
New Hampshire whose term of service were not specified, 
1780" (N. H. Kolls, vol. 16, p. 102). 

24. JoHisr Varnum® (Parker,^ John,'* Jolin,^ Samuel,^ 
George^), born 23 June, 1778; died 23 July, 1836; married 
(1) 9 Oct., 1806, Mary Cooke, daughter of Dr. Nathaniel and 
Anna (White) Saltonstall. He was a distinguished physician 
of Haverhill, and a loyal member of the patriot cause in a family 
which contained many royalists. She was born 20 Sept., 1781; 
died 7 Aug., 1817. 
Three children : 

i. Nathaniel Saltonstall, b. 19 July, 1812. He entered the U. S. 
army as a private, and received promotion. He died in the 
construction of the railroad across the isthmus of Panama, 
ii. Jolin Jay, b. 5 Dec., 1814. 
36. iii. Richard Saltonstall, b. 12 Apr., 1817; m. (1) Sarah Potter, 
(2) Harriet Chanplin. 

He was married (2) 23 May, 1826, to Mary Pease Yarnum, 
widow of James M. Yarnum of Washington, D. C, Avhile he 
was a member of Congress from Massachusetts. No issue. 

Jonx^ Yarnum was graduated from Harvard College in the 
class of 1798. Among his classmates were William EUery 


Channing, D. D., Stephen Longfellow, D. D., Joseph Storey, 
LL.D., Joseph Tuckerraan, D.D. He received from his alma 
mater the degree of A. M. in 1867. After his graduation, he 
entered the office of Judge Henry Smith of Exeter, N. H., 
as a law student, as was the custom in the days before law 
schools were a jjart of the curriculum of a college. In 1802, 
he removed to Plaverhill, and commenced the practice of his 
profession. He was highly successful. Liberal to a fault, 
warm-hearted and generous, gentlemanly in his methods of 
conducting his cases, he had the reputation of being a very 
fair and impartial lawyer. 

He was of the Federal school of politics. Li 1818, he was 
elected to the State Senate of Massachusetts. Li 1826, he was 
chosen to represent his district in the National House of Kep- 
resentatives. He served two terms, having been re-elected in 
1828, when he defeated Caleb Gushing. This was one of the 
most famous congressional contests of the time. During this 
period he was associated with Isaac R. Howe of Haverhill in 
publishing a newspaper. He was very popular in Washington, 
and also at home, and would have been readily re-elected by 
his constituents of " Essex, North District," as it was called, 
but that he felt called upon to decline, because some obligation 
rested upon him, in consequence of a promise not to stand 
again as a candidate. 

A letter of his, written to his brother-in-law, Caleb Butler 
of Groton, in 1826, while he was a representative in Washing- 
ton, is interesting as showing the political sentiment of that 

" The long list of resolutions foi* amending the Constitution must indi- 
cate to strangers that it is imperfect, and that the people are dissatisfied 
with it. The speeches on the amendments also indicate that tlie power is 
safe in the hands of the people, but that the Executive and Legislative 
Departments are so exceedingly corrupt that nothing must be entrusted to 
them ; that members of Congress, when tiie election of President devolves 


upon them, may all be l)ought at a low price, and that the most unfit and 
unprincipled man will certainly be elected to power. I have no taith in 
such doctrine. The parties, — one headed by Calhoun, the other by Clay, — 
begin to develop themselves. Although Calhoun has no intention of 
fighting under the banner of Jackson, yet both parties are united to run 
down the Administration. I presume no treaty has been formed between 
them offensive and defensive, but chance and accident or intrigue must 
decide who shall be appointed dictator. The time may come when we 
shall be compelled to resort to a dictator, but I am opposed to it at 

In a private letter written by him, Mr. Varnuni describes in- 
terestingly social events at the National Capitol at that period. 
" Last Monday I called to congratulate the President on the 
favorable auspices of the New Year." This was the New Year 
reception, then as now, the most ceremonious occasion of the 
season, when his Exeellenc}' receives foreign ministers in full 
regalia, officers of the army and navy in their chapeaus and 
gold-braided uniforms, and officials of the Government and 
members of Congress in plain clothes. He says: "Among 
others present were twenty Indian chiefs in paint and feathers. 
Great numbers of citizens were present with hundreds of ladies, 
in splendid dresses, and plumes of red and green and white of 
at least three feet in length, all on the same bonnet. As it is 
very ungenteel for any man to be seen with his wife, two gen- 
tlemen who happened to be in this mortifying situation strung 
their wives on my arms. I was obliged to escort them about 
for two mortal hours. Five large rooms were opened on the 
occasion, one of which, at the east end, has never been fur- 
nished. The members were much mortified that strangers and 
foreigners should see this naked room, and the very next day a 
resolution was presented to furnish it. The southern members 
said that it was ''a d — d Yankee trick in Mrs. Adams, but it 
was a good one, and they would vote for it.' " 

After Mr. Yarnum's retirement from Congressional life and 


politics, he removed from Haverhill to Dracutt to take posses- 
sion of a farm formerly occupied and owned by his brother, 
and opened an office in Lowell for the i-esumption of his law 
practice. As with all who have tasted a Congressional cai-cei-, 
he did not find it easy to adapt himself to a new coiulitiun of 
things, and in a few years thereafter he removed with his sons 
to Michigan, then a very promising field, to start once more in 
life. In 183G, at Niles, he passed away. In his person he 
was a tall, fine-looking man with a distinguished presence. 
He had great conversational powers, and was a favorite with 
every one who knew him. 

25. Parker Yarxum^ (Parker,^ John* John^ Samuel? 
George'), born 19 May, 1790; died 20 Aug., 1859; mari-ied 1 
Nov., 1826, :\Iartha, daughter of Charles aud Jaue T. McCoy 
of Peterborough, X. II., born -l Dec, 1793, di.;d 11 Aug., 

Two children: 

37. i. John Parker,' b. 17 Jan., 182.S ; in. Ervilla Dutt.m. 

38. ii. Charles Henry, b. 8 June, 1837 ; ni. Mary Jane Davis. 

Parker Varxusi removed from Dracutt in 1838 to Potei-- 
borough, N. H., the native place of his wife, and settled near 
the form owned bj^ James Miller. 

26. JoxAS Varnum, Jr.« {Jouas.^ John,' Johnf Samuel? 
George'), horn 13 April, 1785; died 15 Nov., 1864; married 
(!) 28 Dec., 1813, Hannah, daughter of Joel and Hannah 
(Hildreth) Fox of Dracutt, born 16 Oct., 1792, died 2 Dec, 
1833. No issue. Married (2) 2 Aug., 1835, Eliza, daughter 
of David and Mai-garet (Fisher) McQucsten of Londonderry, 
N. II., born 13 Aug., 1799, died 7 Apr., 1877. 

Four children: 
i. Hantiali.' 

39. ii. Kdward Payson, ra. Martiia J. Storcr. 


iii. Jonas Parker, m. 18 June, 1895, Louise Livingston, dau. of 

Jolin ]\I. and Sarah (Hopkins) Bradford of Geneva, J^. Y. 
iv. William Bently, b. 17 Aug., 1843; d. 7 Oct., 1865. 

Jonas Yarxuji was a farmer in Dracutt, and formerly lived 
on the Mammoth road, abont two miles from Pawtueket bridge. 
About 1861, he rented his Dracutt farm and bought a small 
place in Deny, I^T. H., where he educated his children and 
whei-e he died. lie lies buried in the Oakland Cemetery, 

27. William Parker Varxum^ { Jonas, ^ John* John^ 
Samuel,'' George'), born 27 Feb., 1787; died 10 Jan., 1864; 
married 4 June, 1844, Marv, daughter of Robert and Sarah 
Park of Windham, N. H., born 29 Jan., 1813, died 6 April, 

Two children: 
40. i. William Parker,' b. 27 Sept., 1846 ; ra. Martha B. Kilburn. 
ii. Mary Anne, b. 7 Xov., 1848: d. 6 Feb., 1906; m. 8 Aug., 
1871, Joseph Giles Eaton, son of W. P. and Sarah (Brazer) 
Eaton. Rear Admiral U. S. N. ; retired 30 June, 1905. 
Original appointment to U. S. Naval Academy from Mas- 
sachusetts, 24 Sept., 1863. Sea service, 19 yrs. 10 mos. 
Shore duty, 18 yrs. 2 mos. 
One child (Eaton) : 

Isabel Yarnum, b. 8 July, 1874; d. in Pittsburg, Pa., 17 
June, 1888. 

William Parker Tarntjm was born on the farm in Dra- 
cutt which had been a part of the original possessions of his 
great grandfather. He sold his interest in the patrimonial 
acres to his brother Xathaniel, and bought a home near Paw- 
tucket bridge. He and his brother !N^athaniel were extensive 
quarrymen in granite, and furnished the foundations for the 
early mills and bridges of Lowell. Mr. Yarnum was the first 


to deliver split stone for the Merrimack mills. He together 
with his wife, who outlived him nineteen years, are buried in 
the Oakland Cemetery, Dracutt. 

28. John VAENira" (Jonas,^ Jonas,* Jolin^ Samuel,^ 
George^), born 26 Oct., 17G3; died 27 Sept., 1832; married 
Eunice Gilson of Pepperell, born 1767, died 29 May, 1824. 

Four children: 

41. i. John, Jr.,' b. 5 Dec, 1787; m. Abby Getchell. 

ii. Eunice, b. 1 May, 1790; m. 6 June, 1806, Abner Sheple. 

iii. Jane, b. 28 Oct., 1797 ; m. Ames. 

iv. William, b. 1802; d. 9 Aug., 1820. He cut his arm while 
mowing, which resulted fatally. 

29. Jonas Spaulding Varnum* (Jonas,^ Jonas,* Jolin^ 
Samuel,^ George'), born 1 Mar., 1771; died 21 Oct., 1830; 
married 1 Mar., 1800, Anne Shipley, daughter of Jonathan 
and Abigail (Blood) Shipley of Pepperell, born 19 Sept., 1779, 
died 28 Dec, 1839. 

Three children: 

i. Ann, b. 1 Feb. 1801; d. 25 Mar., 1886; m. 6 Apr., 1823, 
Fred F. Parker, son of Samuel and Submit Parker, b. 4 Jan., 
1801, d. 25 May, 1841. 
Three children (Parker) : 
Henry Alfred. 
Charles Frederick. 
Henrietta Elizabeth, 
ii. Jonas, b. 29 Sept., 1804; d. unm. 21 Sept., 1832. 

42. iii. Joseph Bradley, b. 4 Dec, 1815; m. Betsey B. Tucker. 

Jonas Spaulding Vaenum was a farmer on the j)aternal 
acres at Pepperell. 

30. Jonathan Vaenuim* (Jonathan,^ AbraJiam,* John,^ 
Samuel,^ George'), born 31 Dec., 1771; died 1 Sept., 18il3; 


married 29 Nov., 1799, Dolly Stevens of Andover, born 6 
April, 1777, died 7 Feb., 1831. 
Eleven children: 

i. Hannah, b. 8 Oct., 1800; m. Benj. Skelton. 
ii. Adeline, b. 13 Apr., 1802; d. 7 Dec., 1805. 
iii. Charlotte, b. 19 Apr., 1803; m. 12 Nov., 1830, John P. 
One child (Cutter) : 

John Varnum, b. 20 Oct., 1831 ; d. 1833. 
43. iv. Cyrus, b. 19 Apr., 1805; m. Emma W. Osgood. 
V. Asa, b. 15 Dec, 1806; d. 1807. 
vi. Asa, b. 1 June, 1808 ; d. 1881 ; m. Lucy Ricord. 
vii. Martha Adeline, b. 14 Apr., 1810; d. 25 Aug., 1847; 
m. 3 Oct., 1844, George, son of Jabesh and Lydia 
(Steam) Stevens of Dracutt. 
viii. Augusta, b. 4 Dec, 1811 ; d. 14 June, 1867 ; m. April, 1847, 
Thomas D. Underwood of Dracutt, b. 26 Oct., 1802, d. 15 
Aug., 1881. 
Two children (Underwood) : 

Thomas Jefferson, m. 10 June, 1855, Arabella Coburn 

Abby Ann, m. 5 June, 1884, Edward Sawyer Howe. 
ix. Charles, b. 5 Sept., 1813; d. 15 Aug., 1861; m. Abigail 

X. Louisa, b. 22 Mar., 1816; d. 2 Apr., 1849; m. Ephraim S. 
Peabody of Dracutt. 
One child (Peabody) : 

Anna L., d. 5 Oct., 1849. 
xi. George Stevens, b. 9 Oct., 1817; d. 18 Oct., 1850, on the 
Isthmus of Panama. 

Jonathan Yaenum was a Dracutt farmer. He was fatally 
injured by falling from a tree in his orchard when he was 72 
years of age. He and his wife and daughter Louisa are buried 
in the little cemetery near Pawtucket bridge. 


31. Asa Yaexum^ (Jonathan,^ Abraham,'^ Jolni? Samuel,^ 
George^), horn 19 Dec, 1778 j died about 1850; married Anna 
Moore of Lynchburg, Ya. 

Three children: 

i. Mary Ann,' b. 8 Mar., 1811 ; m. Bell of Georgia. 

Seven children (Bell) : 

Joseph, m. Emily Kinney. 

Walter, m. Eliza Adair. 

Mary, m. Dr. Lawrence. 

Sarah, m. Zach. Smith. 

James, m. Anna Wimperly. 

George, d. unm. 

Asa Varnum, d. unm. 
ii. William Moore, m. Susan Saxon. No issue, 
iii. George AVashington, d. unm. A doctor in Florida. 

Asa Varnum, born in Dracutt, settled in Lynchburg, Va., 
about 1813; at least, at that time he was there and associated 
in business with George W., a son of Gen. Joseph Bradley 
Varnum, at that date a senator in Congress from Massachu- 
setts. He afterwards removed to near Athens, Ga., where he 
became a i)romincnt citizen and a man of means. Here he died. 
His son William was living in 1865. There are now no known 
male descendants of his name living:. 


32. Abraham Varnum* ( William,^ Ahraham,^ John,^ 
Samuel,' George^), born 23 Aug., 1770; died 4 Feb., 1837; 
married 13 Jan., 1791, his cousin Dolly, daughter of Jonathan 
and Anna (East) Varnum of Dracutt, by the Rev. Solomon 
Aiken, born 23 May, 1769, died 2G Feb., 1856. 
Eight children : 

i. Infant,' unnamed, b. 28 Dec, 1791 ; d. 31 Dec, 1791. 
44. ii. William, b. 26 Jan., 1793 ; m. Mehitable Chandler, 
iii. Jonathan, b. 31 Oct., 1795; d. 3 Feb., 1797. 


iv. Prudence, b. 16 Apr., 1797; d. 15 Jan., 1880; m. Daniel 
McLellan of Peacham, Vt. 
Two children (McLellan) : 
Julia, d. at 6 years. 
Louis, d. 1865. 
V. Hannah, b. 13 Apr., 1799 ; d. 6 Oct., 1840. 

vi. Julia, b. 13 Aug., 1802; d. 31 May, 1806; m. Mc- 

vii. Pascal, b. 3 Sept., 1804; d. 21 Feb., 1829. 

45. viii. Asa, b. 3 May, 1806 ; d. 25 Dec, 1861 ; m. Laura P. Wyman. 

Abraham Vaentjm was born in Dracutt, and as a member 
of his father's flock went to Thornton, IsT. H., shortly after the 
Revolutionary War. He removed with his father to Peacham, 
Vt., where his children were born. He was a farmer. Dolly 
seems originally to have gone to Thornton in some capacity in 
William Yarnum's family. He makes this entry in his day 
book: "Dolly Yarnum began hir time hear 1789, Feb. 26." 
She was then 20 years old. She outlived her husband nineteen 

33. JoBCsr Yarxutm* ( WilUam,^ Ahraham,'^ John^ Samuel,^ 
George^), farmer, of Peacham, Yt., born 16 May, 1781; died 1 
June, 1856; married Mary, daughter of Moody and Mary 
(Foster) Morse of Peacham, Yt., died 8 March, 1857. 

Six children: 

46. i. John, Jr., b. 26 Dec, 1806; m. Fatima Robbins. 

47. ii. Franklin, b. 15 Oct., 1809; ra. Betsey Harvey. 

iii. Maiy S., b. 26 Mar., 1812 ; d. 6 Apr., 1890 ; m. (1) 13 Apr., 
1830, Josiah Dana. 
Four children (Dana) : . 

Elijah Varnum, b. 6 July, 1831. 
Mary E., b. 28 Sept., 1834. 
Frank, b. 29 Mar., 1837. 
JuUaA., b. 11 July, 1840. 



She m. (2) 2 Dec, 1847, Seneca Ladd. 
Two children (Ladd) : 

Charles D., b. 3 Sept., 1848. 
Harvey E., b. 29 Sept., 1855. 
iv. Orrin, b. 15 Oct., 1814; d. unm. 2 May, 1845. 
V. Alniira, b. 24 Apr., 1816; d. 26 Ajn-"., 1894; m. 24 Oct., 
1844, James McLachlin. 
Four children (McLachlin). 
vi. Charles, b. 5 July, 1823; d. 1 Dec, 1883; m. (1) Betsey 
Clark, (2) Sarah Brown. 

34. Phi^eas Yarnum* ( William,^ Ahraham* Johnf Sam- 
tiel;^ George^), farmer, of Peacham, Yt., born 9 June, 1783; 
died 11 Mar., 1863; raariied 7 Apr., 1811. Loeada Blanchard 
of Peacham, Yt., born 24 Oct., 1792, died 20 Apr., 1855. 
Eleven children: 
48. i. Simon Blanchard, b. 6 May, 1812; m. Mary Cahill. 
ii. Margaret, b. 1 Aug., 1814"'; d. 23 Aug., 1817. 
iii. Sophronia, b. 3 July, 1816; ra. 21 Mar., 1839, James Clark 
of Marathon, la. 
Three children (Clark) : 

Sophronia, b. 13 Mar., 1841 : d. 5 Mar., 1842. 
Mary Loeada. 
Thomas George. 
William, b. 13 Jan., 1818; m. Elizabeth A. Kimball. 
Jacob Guy, b. 14 Mar., 1820; m. Jemima Gilfillan. 
George, b. 16 Mar., 1822; d. 25 Jan., 1S76 ; m. 16 Jimc, 

1846, Harriet Brown. 
Phincas, b. 21 Sept., 1824; d. 26 Mar., 1825. 
Mark, b. 19 June, 1826; m. Mary Gilfillan. 
Harvey Blanchard, b. 28 Apr., 1828; m. Carrie E. Bickford. 
Benjamin Franklin, b. 7 Apr., 1832; m. (1) Marietta IC. 
Gilfillan, (2) Clara M. Lawrence, 
xi. Margaret Sarah, b. 10 Feb.. 1835; d. 16 Jlay, 1906; m. 13 
Dec, 1859, Duncan C. Harvey of I'eacham, Vt. 













t2j , £ ,-»^->J 


Five children (Harvey) : 
Lou Pjlla. 

George B. McClellan. 
Nellie May. 
Etta Elvira. 
Charles D. 

35. JosiAii Varxutm^ (James,^ James,* JoJm,^ ScnnnelJ' 
Oeorge^), farmer, of Caiidia, N. H., born 5 Mar., 1781; died 
23 Dec, 1826; married 27 Mav, 1802, Lucy Kowe of Caudia, 
N. H., born 15 Feb., 1784, died IG May, 1857. 
Twelve childi-en: 

i. Lydia,' b. 9 Aug., 1802; d. 5 Apr., 1857; m. 3 Oct., 1830, 
Luther Steai-ns of Lexington, Mass. 
Four children (Stearns), who died young. 

54. ii. ]Moses, b. 23 May, 1804; m. Climenia Anderson. 
iii. Dolly, b. 10 Apr., 1806; d. unm. 21 May, 1861. 

iv. Anne, b. 26 May, 1808 : d. 26 Dec, 1883 ; m. Daniel Stearns 

of Lincoln, Mass. 
V. Jonathan, b. 23 July, 1811 ; d. unm. 30 Mar., 1847. 
vi. Polly, b. 11 July, 1813; m. Ichabod Dean of Lowell, Mass. 
vii. Lyman, b. 16 Sept., 1815; d. 25 Aug., 1818. 
viii. James, b. 1 Nov., 1817 ; m. Susan Bickford of Sheffield, Vt. 
ix. Lyman, b. 7 Sept., 1820; d. 8 Dec, 1840. 
X. Susan, b. 7 Mar., 1822; m. Isaac Sawyer of Lowell, Mass. 

55. xi. George Washington, b. 3 June, 1824; m. Lucy P. Cram. 
xii. Betsey Jane, b. 24 Nov., 1825 ; d. unm. 5 June, 1881. 


30. Richard Saxtonstall Yarnum' (John,^ Parker; 
John* John,^ Samuel,^ George''), born 12 April, 1817; died 26 
Dec., 1880; married (1) 18 Feb., 1844, Sarah Potter of Jones- 
ville, Mich., born 19 April, 1825, died 7 Sept., 1845. No issue. 
Married (2) 29 Jan., 1854, Harriet Chanplin of Jonesville, 
Mich., born 24 March, 1832, died 23 Oct., 1904. 


Three children; 

56. i. Grosvenor Chanplin,' m. Ida M. Benner. 
ii. Freeland Gardner, m. Sarabel G. Kelsey. 

57. iii. Edward Chanplin, m. Mary A. Carr. 

EiCHLiVKD Saltonstall Yarnum was born in Haverhill, 
Mass., and was educated at Phillijjs Exeter Academy, N. H., 
where he was a student in 183.3. At an early age he settled 
in Niles, Mich., Avhere he became a druggist. Afterwards he 
moved to Jonesville, in the same State, where he married his 
two wives. His sons continue their father's business there 
under the name of R. S. Varnum's Sons. 

37. John Parker Yarnum'' {Parker,^ Parlcer^ John,^ 
John,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 17 Jan., 1828; died 13 July, 
1871; married 6 Aug., 1855, Ervilla Dutton of Francestown, 
N. II., born 13 Jan., 1829. 

Two children: 

i. Frederick F.,' b. 19 Apr., 1857. 
ii. George A., b. 25 Oct., 1858. 

John Parker Yarnum was born in Dracutt, and went to 
Peterborough, N. H., in 1838 with his father's family, he being 
then 10 years old. In early manhood he purchased and lived 
on land of Capt. Robert Swan. 

38. Charles Henry Yarnum^ (Parl-er, Jr.^ Parlcer^ 
John* Jolin^ Samuel,' Georga^), farmer, Peterborough, N. PI., 
born 8 June, 1837; married 23 Sept., 1858, Mary Jane Davis 
of Hancock, ^. H. 

One child: 

i. Charles Edwin,' b. 25 July, 1861. 

39. Edward Patson Yarnum" {Jonas, Jr.,'' Jonas, ^ John* 
John, Samuel^ George^), married 27 Oct., 1864, Martha Jane, 


daughter of Capt. Woodbury aud Sarah (Dustin) Storer of 
Di-vry, X. H. 
One child: 
58. i. William Bentley/ m. Harriet F. VanE. Crosby. 

Edward Paysox Varnum lives in Wallham, and is a har- 
ness maker. 

40. William Parker Yarnum" ( William Parker,'^ Jonas," 
John,* John,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 27 Sept., 1846; died 26 
Aug., 1896; married 10 March, 1869, Martha Butler, daughter 
of William and Louise Kilbourn of Boscawen, jN^. H. 
Two children: 

i. Mary Louise," b. 2;; Oct., 1869; d. 26 Aug., 1900. 
ii. Joseph Parker, m. 25 Oct., 1905, Jenuie ilaria, dau. of Darius 
S. and Maria B. (Morgan) Fox of New London, N. H. 

William Parker Yarxum was born in that part of Dracutt 
now annexed to Lowell. Upon his marriage to Martha Butler 
Iviiburn of Boscawen, N. H., he brought his bride to the old 
house built by Jonas Varnum, the Kevolutionary soldier, in 
178 L Nathaniel Yarnum, son of Jonas, was then living in the 
house which is located on the " Shatswell-Yarnum " purchase. 
This house was bequeathed to William Parker Yarnum. Mi'. 
A'arnum was for several years a member of the School Board 
of the town of Dracutt, and at the time of his decease Chair- 
man of the Board of Selectmen. He was a man of excellent 
education, of wide reading, and of the highest integrity. His 
personal influence was great, aud his personal attributes en- 
deared him to his neighbors* not alone in his native town, but 
also to man}' in the contiguous city of Lowell. His untimely 
early death was a loss in which the community suffered with 
his immediate family. 

He was buried in the Oakland cemetery, Dracutt. 

gyrus: seventh generation. 103 

41. John Yaknum, Jr./ (John,'' Joints,^ Jonas,* Jolm? 
Samuel;- George^) , horn 5 Dec, 1787; died 6 Oct., 1822; mar- 
ried Abby, daughter of Capt. Getchell of Marblehead, died 
7 Nov., 1823, aged 27. 
One child: 

i. William,' b. 27 Aug., 1819; d. 28 Feb., 1!)02 ; ra. 31 Oct., 
lcS78, Henrietta A., dan. of Waite and Almira H. (Peck) 
Lowrey of Brooklyn, N. Y. No issue. 

John Yarnuim was born in Pepperell, and attended school 
at Groton Academy in the year 1804. He afterwards studied 
medicine in his native town under the tuition of Dr. John 
Walton. He was mariied as early as 1818. He settled and 
continued the practice of his profession at Lyons, N. Y., up to 
the time of his decease, at the early age of 35. A monument 
is erected to his memory and that of his wife at Lyons. 

42. Joseph Bradley Yarnum'' {Jonas Sjpaulding^ Jonas, 
Jr.,^ Jonas,* John,^ Samuel,- George^), hovn 4 Dec, 1815; died 
11 Feb., 1901; married 16 June, 1842, Betsey B. Tucker of 
Pepperell, born 7 Sept., 1819, died 13 March, 1896. 

Three children: 

i. William Francis,' m. 15 June, 1871, Mary B. Alden of 

Atkinson, N. H. 
ii. Charles James, b. 28 Dec, 1847 ; d. 21 July, 1848. 
iii. Harriet Ann, m. 5 June, 1901, Nathaniel Lakiu of Pepperell. 

Joseph Bradley Yarnum was a farmer, and resided on the 
paternal acres of the fourth generation in Pepperell. 

43. Cyrus Yarnum' {Jonailian^ Jonathan,^ Abraham* 
John,"" Samud,- George'), former, of Blue Hill, Me., born 19 
April, 1805; died 25 Nov., 1848; married 25 Sept., 1836, 
Emma W. Osgood, of Blue Hill, Me., born 9 Aug., 1808, died 
21 June, 1881. =" ' 


Five children: 

59. i. Frank Benjamin,' m. Mattie A. Pierson. 
ii. Harriet Louisa. 

iii. Sarah Elizabeth, b. 17 May, 1842; d. 16 Jan., 1900; m. 
Alvin B., son of Daniel and Nancy (Cole) Allen of North 
Sedgwick, Me. 
Four children (Allen) : 
Addie Fletcher. 

Sarah Helen, m. Thomas, seventh in descent from George 
iv. John Gage, b. 25 Nov., 184Jk 
V. Cyrus David, b. 15 Sept., 1847. 

44. William Vaexum' {Abraham,^ William,^ Abraham* 
John^ Samuel,^ George^), born 26 Jan., 1793, at Peacham, Yt. ; 
he became a lawyer, and was admitted to practice at Danville, 
Vt.; died 2 June, 1841, at Lake Mills, Wis.; married 22 Jan., 
1837, Mehitable, daughter of Samuel and Mehitable Chandler 
of Pomfret, Yt., born 10 Feb., 1810. 
Four children: 

60. i. Hiram Chandler,' b. 11 Mar., 1838; m. Agnes Armstrong, 
il. Julia, b. 16 Oct., 1839; d. 4 Aug., 1841. 

iii. Franklin, b. 27 July, 1841 ; d. 27 July, 1841. 

iv. Benjamin Franklin, b. 20 Aug., 1842; m. Kate Pickell. He 
is a civil engineer. In 1861, when 18 years of age, he en- 
listed in an Iowa regiment, and served three years. He was 
in the famous Army of the Cumberland, and with Sherman 
from Atlanta to the sea. 

45. Asa Yaenum,' {Abraham,^ William,^ Abraham* 
John,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 3 May, 1806, at Peacham, Yt.; 
died 25 Dec, 1861; married 1 March, 1832, Laura Prescott 
Wyman of Lowell, daughter of John Wyman of Ashby and 
Eunice Prescott Hildrith, his wife, of Concord, born 1807, 
died Dec, 1860. 


Four children: 

61. i. Franklin Wyman Hildrith/ m. Julia Craytey. 
ii. John Abram, b. 1834 ; d. in infancy. 

iii. Sidney, b. 183G ; d. in infancy, 
iv. John, b. 1841; d. 1843. 

Asa Vaentjm was born in Peacham, Vt. After his mar- 
riage he went to New York city, where he entered into mer- 
cantile pursuits. He became a merchant in Brooklyn, N. Y., 
in his later years. He was a man of great stature, being over 
six feet in height. He is described as a man of jiroud dispo- 
sition, very dignified in manner — of strong domestic tastes, 
devotedly attached to his wife and the one son who was spared 
him out of a family of four children. He survived his wife hut 
one year, dying of rheumatism of the heart. 

46. John Varnum, Jk.' (JoJm,^ William,^ Ahraham,* John; 
Samuel,^ Oeorge^), born 26 Dec, 1806, at Peacham, Vt., 
where he was a farmer; died 5 Aug., 1880; married 26 April, 
1832, Fatima, daughter of Jonas and Mary (Chappel) Rob- 
bins, born 8 July, 1811, died 8 Oct., 1878. 
Twelve children: 

i. Electa Isadora,' b. 29 Apr., 1833; d. 19 July, 1867; m. 1 
Jan., 1862, Fowler S. Ford. 
Two children (Ford) : 

Elmer S., b. 25 Jan., 1863. 
Jonas Varnum, d. 28 June, 1867. 

62. ii. John, Jr., b. 11 Jan., 1835; m. Frances M. Hand, 
iii. Mary Eliza, b. 28 July, 1836 ; d. 21 Mar., 1841. 

63. iv. Leonard Eobbins, b. 19 -July, 1838; m. (1) Lucy I. Colston, 

(2) Harriet S. Gates. 

V. Hannah Sylvia, b. 25 t)ec., 1840; d. 22 Apr., 1878; m. Hi- 
ram A. Sanborn. 

vi. Jonas Galusha, b. 6 June, 1843; d. 17 July, 1863. 

vii. Charles Payne, b. 6 June, 1843; d. 23 Jan., 1865. 

106 VARNUM gen:ealogy. 

Both these twin brothei's enlisted in Co. G, 15th Vermont 
Volunteers, 16 Sept., 1862, for nine months' service in the war 
for the Union. They were mustered out at the end of this 
term, in 1863. The former was incapacitated for further ser- 
vice; the latter re-enlisted in the cavalry service, 11 Aug., 1864. 
He was taken prisoner 7 Oct., 1864, and died in Libby Prison 
23 Jan., 1865. 

Their names are inscribed on the Soldiers' Monument at 
Peacham, Vt. 

viii. George Alonzo, b. 9 Apr., 1846; d. 18 Nov., 1862. 

Lx. Georgiana, b. 9 Apr., 1846; d. 15 Nov., 1862. 

X. Eugene Murray, b. 19 Oct., 1848; d. 25 Oct., 1862. 

xi. Mary Martha, b. 28 Aug., 1850; d. 29 Oct., 1862. 

xii. Flora Fatima, b. 28 Aug., 1850; d. 9 Oct., 1850. 

47. Fkaxklen Yaexuini^ (JoJin,^ William,^ Abrahcnn* John,^ 
Samtiel,- George'), born 15 Oct., 1809; died 8 Sept., 1880; 
married 12 June, 181:5, Betsey, daughter of Nathaniel and 
Clarissa (Porter) Harvey of Peacham, Yt., born 2 June, 1819, 
died 8 April, 1899. 
Nine children: 

i. Clara E.,« b. 26 May, 1848 ; d. 28 Dec, 1855. 

ii. Martha A., b. 21 June, 1850; d. 28 Nov., 1855. 

iii. Mary E., b. 2 July, 1852; d. 28 Nov., 1855. 

iv. Laura, b. 6 Sept., 1854 ; m. 26 Apr., 1893, Charles F. Mc- 

V. Julia, b. 8 Feb., 1857 ; m. 30 Jan., 1878, William W. Somers. 

vi. Bessie, b. 2 Feb., 1859. 

vii. Sarah, b. 24 July, 1861 ; d. 5 Mar., 1879. 

viii. Esther, b. 6 Nov., 1863; d. 1 Jan., 1865. 

ix. Alice, b. 23 Oct., 1866; d. 2 Mar., 1879. 

Frakkxin Yarntjm was a successful farmer in his native 
town, and in his chosen pursuit accumulated a handsome prop- 
erty. He was a man of sujierior judgment and of great probity 

"WTLLIam: seventh generation. 107 

of character. Of hi.s remarkable family of nine cliildi-en, all 
daughters, three died in 1855, and two in early youth. 

48. Simon Blanchard Tarnum' (P/^m^r/.s," William,^ Ah- 
raham* John^ Samuel^- George^), born 6 May, 1812; died 16 
Nov., 1867; married 31 July, 1836, Mary Cahill. 
Two children: 

i. Jane Mary,' b. 6 May, 1837 ; m. 23 Jan., 1862, Mark Bovee 

of Greenmoiint, la. 
ii. Simon Blanchard, b. G Aug., 1843. 

49. William YARNLrM' (Phmeas,'^ WiUiam,^ Ahraham,* 
Jolin^ iSamael;- George^), born 15 Jan., 1818; died 10 July, 
1869; married 2 Dec, 1845, Elizabeth A., daughter of Isaac and 
Elizabeth (Fellows) Kimball of Peacham, Yt.. born 15 Feb., 
1823, died 24 Sept., 1893. 

Five children, all born in Peacham: 
64. i. Clark," b. 24 Sept., 1846; ni. (1) Ella Shipley, (2) Irene 
Galloway, (3) K. Belle Tuttle. 
ii. Isaac Kimball, b. 26 Nov., 1848. 
iii. Phineas George, b. 22 Oct., 1850. 

iv. Lydia Jane, b. 18 Sept., 1852 ; d. 25 Jan., 1883; m. 18 May, 
1879, H. S. Falkonburg of Harvard, Neb. 
One child (Falkenburg) : 

Lydia, b. 23 Jan., 1883. 
v.. Liizzie Sophronia, b. 4 Juno, 1864; ni. in Brooklyn, la., 31 
May, 1900, Thomas J. Jkaden of Beaver Falls, Pa., b. 23 
Aug., 1856. 

William Varnum became an extensive farmer near Malcom, 
Iowa, whither he went from Peacham in February, 1865. 
When, in 1830, the Masons disbanded in Vermont because of 
the "Morgan trouble," they presented their Bible to the Metho- 
dist society of Peacham. Some of the narrow-minded anti- 


Masonic members of that society regarded the sacred volume 
as having somehow become tainted from its association. They, 
thei'cfoi-e, refused to have it preached from, and young Yarnum, 
then a youth of 12 years, was put through the window of the 
meeting house to obtain the book, which mysteriously there- 
after disappeared. He was a man of strong religious principles, 
and it may be, this act into which he was led, had an influence 
for good in his after years. He was a very honorable, upright 
man, and justly held in high esteem by all who knew him. 

50. Jacob Guy Yarnum'' {Phineas,^ William,^ Abraham* 
John^ Samuel;' George^), born 14 March, 1820; died 5 Jan., 
1884; married 2 March, 1850, Jemima, daughter of William and 
Isabel (Morrison) Gilfillan of Eyegate, Yt., born 16 July, 1829. 

Three children: 
65. i. Harvey William,' m. Abby L. Stanton. 

ii. Henry' James, b. 7 Dec, 1854; d. 7 Oct., 1857. 
GO. iii. Byron Guy, m. Estella Dole. 

Jacob Gut Yaknum was a farmer in Danville, Yt. He was 
a good citizen, and was chosen by his fellow townsmen to the 
various offices of the town. He accumulated a good property, 
and was respected by all. 

51. Maek Yaknum' (Phineas,'^ William,^ Ahraham* John^ 
Samuel^ George^), hovxi 19 June, 1826; married 1 June, 1857, 
at Osceola, 111., Mary, daughter of William and Isabel (Mor- 
rison) Gilfillan of Kyegate, Yt., born 1829, died 30 Aug., 1862. 

One child: 

Frederic Stevens,' b. 18. Dec, 1855; m. Maggie A. McCall 
of Minneapolis, Minn. 

52. Harvey Blanchard Yarnum' (Phineas,'^ William,^ 
Abraliam* Jolxn^ Samuel,' George^), born 28 April, 1828; mar- 
ried 17 Dec, 1861, Carrie E. Bickford. 



Four children : 

i. Phineas Isaac Keyes,* b. 31 Oct., 1863. 
ii. Charles Bickford, b. 20 Sept., 1865. 
iii. Mary Locada, b. 29 Jan., 1871. 
iv. Carrie Emily, b. 28 Aug., 1873. 

53. Bkx.jamin Fkanklix Varxum'' (Phineas,^ William,^ 
Abraham,^ JoIdi^' Samuel^- George^), born 7 April, 1832; mar- 
lied (1) Marietta E. Gilfillan. No issue. Married (2) 21 Jan., 
1869, Clara INI. Lawrence. 

Two children: 

i. George Lawrence,' b. 6 Feb., 1872. 
ii. Frederic C, b. 16 Aug., 1875. 

54. Moses Yakntjm'' (JosiaJi,'^ James,^ James,* John,^ 
Samneli George') , hovn 23 May, 1804; died IG May, 1869; 
married 18 Oct.. 1832, Climenia Anderson. He was a farmer 
at Candia, N. H. 

One child: 

Webster,' b. 10 May, 1839; m. Sarah A. Lang. 

55. George Washington Varnum' (Josiah,^ James,^ 
James* John,^ Samuel^' George'), born 23 June, 1824, at 
Candia, N. H.; died 26 May, 1881, at Lowell, Mass.; married 
Lucy P. Cram of Candia. He was a painter. 

Two children: 

i. Madilla F..» b. 14 Dec, 1858. 
ii. Wilbcrt Francis, b. 9 Mar., 1862. 

56. Grosvenor Chanplin Yarnum* {Richard SaUonstall,'' 
John,'' Parker,'' John,* John,^ Samuel^' George'). He is of the 
firm of K. S. Yarnum Sons, drugs and books, Jonesville, Mich., 
succeeding their father in business. Married 25 May, 1881, 


Ida M., daughter of Milton and Andora Benner of Jonesville, 

One child: 

Harriet Chanplin, m. 14 June, liMJ,), J. H. Wickniiin. 

57. Edward Chaxplin Varnum** {Richard S alio) t stall, ^ 
John,^ Parher,^ John,^ John,^ 8amueL~ George^). He and his 
two brothers, Grosvenor C- and Freeland Gr. Varnnni, make up 
the firm of R. S. Yarnura Sons, Jonesville, Mich. Married 27 
Oct., 1885, Mary A., daughtei- of Henry T. and Maria (Jarr of 
Jonesville, ]Mich. 

Three children: 

i. Fannie M.,' b. 19 Apr., 1888; d. 2.i Apr., 1905. 
ii. Kidianl S., b. 28 Oct., 1890. 
iii. Henry C, b. 4 July, 1897. 

58. William Bentlet Yarxum* {Edward Pai/sonJ Jonas, 
Jr.,'^ Jonas,^ John,^ John^ Samuel^- George^), born 8 N^ov., 1868; 
resides at Albany, N. Y. ; Employed at the observatory ; mar- 
ried 26 March, 1896, Harriot YanK. Crosby, daughter of 
Frederick M. and Sarah J. (Atter) Fink of Albany, N. Y. 

Three children: 

i. Marianne Jane,' b. 22 Xov., 1896. 

ii. William Bentley, b. 6 May, 1899; tl. 13 Aug., 1899. 

iii. Edwai-d Chester, b. 13 June, 1901. 

59.'k Benjamin Yarnum* {Cyrus,'' Jonathan,^ Jona- 
than^ Abraham * John^ Samuel'^ George)), born at Blue Hill, 
Me.; a stock raiser at Yinltind, Kan.. He went to Kansas in 
1856; was an active participant in the early anti-slavery trou- 
bles there; was at the battles of Black Fork, Franklin and 
Topeka when the Legislature was dispersed by Gen. Sumner. 
He enlisted for the war in 1861, in Co. B, 9th Kansas Yolun- 

PEANKLnsr w. H. : eighth generation. Ill 

teers, and was discharged 15 Dec, 18G5; marrird 14 Sept., 
1865, Mattie A. Piersou. 
Seven children : 

i. John Gage/ b. 18 Feb., ISfiT ; d. 18 Mar., 1867. 

ii. Annie Emma, b. 20 ]Mar., 1869. 

iii. Hattie Ellen, b. 10 IMar., 1870. 

iv. Martha Belle, b. 9 Feb., 1872. 

V. Frank Louis, b. 10 Aug., 1874. 

vi. Charles Edwin, b. 6 Sept., 1876. 

vii. Sarah Cutter, b. 10 June, 1881. 

GO. IIiRAM Chandler Yarnum^ ( William,'' AhraJiaui,^ 
Willicun,^ Abraham * JoJni,^ Samuel,^ George^), boi-n 11 March, 
1838, at Peacham, ^'t.; lives at Clements, Kan; a stock raiser; 
married 27 Dec, 18G7, at Danville, Vt., Agnes Armstrong of 
Glasgow, Scotland, born 16 March, 1838. 
Two children : 

i. William Wallace,' b. 8 May, 1878. 
ii. Samuel Chandler, b. 23 June, 1882. 

61. Franklin Wyman Hildrith Varnum^ {As<i,^ Abra- 
ham,^ William,^ John* Johnj^ Samuel^- George^), born 26 Nov., 
1832; died in 1862; married Julia, daughter of Alphonse 
and Mary (Keller) Ci-aytey of Paris, France, born 22 Oct., 
1837, died 7 Feb., 1902. 

Two children: 
i. May." 
67. ii. Frankhn Martenett, b. 9 Sept., 1862; m. Jennie Stevens. 

Franklin Wyman Hh^dritii Yarnum went to California 
ml854:; bought property in San Francisco, and established a 
bookselling and publishing business. He had previously to 
that been fairly successful in the gold fields of that State. 
He was an active member of the Yigilance Committee during 


the lawless time of the early days of San Francisco. In 1858, 
he mari'ied Julia Craytey of Brooklyn, N. Y., and settled in 
Georgetown, S. C, where he became a dry goods merchant, 
but was obliged to relinquish his business because of the 
Southern sentiment of disunion and the hostility against 
Northerners. In 1862, he again departed for California, but 
left behind his family because of the disturbed state of the 
country. He never reached his destination, and it was sup- 
posed that he was slain on the overland journey by desperadoes 
or Indians. 

62. JoHK Yarnum, Jr.' {John,^ Jolin,^ William,^ Abra- 
ham,'^ John^ Samuel^ George^), born 11 Jan., 1835; died 17 
April, 1903; married 16 Oct., 1862, Frances M., daughter of 
Backus and Elizabeth J. (Peak) Hand. 

Five children: 

i. Thaddeus Stevens,' b. 23 Jan., 1863; m. Minna Humphrey. 

ii. Jennette, b. 29 Oct., 18G5. 

iii. Jessie, b. 27 Sept., 1869. 

iv. John Hand, b. 18 Jan., 1871. 

V. Ernest E., b. 22 Jan., 1877; d. 14 Jan., 1883. 

John Varnum, Jr., was a merchant in Peacham, Yt. On 
4 Nov., 1864, he was chosen town clerk, and in Sept., 1874, he 
was made town treasurer, which office he held until 1889. He 
represented his native town one year in the State Legislature 
of Yfermont. In 1897, he was attacked with paralysis, from 
which he was a helpless invalid until his death in 1903. 

63. Leonard Robbins Yarnum® {Jolin^ Jolin^ William,^ 
Abraham,^ John,'' Samuel,^ Oeorge^), married 12 July, 1871, 
Mrs. Lucy I. Colston, daughter of Nathaniel and Sophia 
(Powers) Kilburn of Hartford, Yt., born 12 July, 1833, died 9 
April, 1895. 


One child: 

Nellie A.,' 111. 13 Dec.', 1899, Chester C. Edwards. 

He married (2) 13 Jan., 1900, Mrs. Harriet S. Gates, daugh- 
ter of Harry and J^ucinda (Preston) Robinson of Strafford, Yr. 

64. Clark Tarnum* (JVilliam,' Phineas,^ William,^ Ab- 
raham,'^ John? Sumnel,^ George^), born in Peacham, Yt. ; a 
practising lawyer in Chicago; married (1) 29 Sept., 1870, Ella, 
daughter of George W. and Maiinda M. (Sinsabaugh) Shipley 
of Montezuma, la., born 15 Mar., 1851, died 3 Nov., 1890. 

Two children, born at Newton, la.: 
i. Lulu May," b. 6 May, 1874. 
ii. Blanche, b. 27 Sept., 1876. 

He married (2) 9 Aug., 1893, Irene, daughter of John and 
Laura A. (Scudder) Galloway of New Boston, III., boin 18 
May, 1862, died 28 Oct., 1901. 
Two children: 

i. Clark Shipley, b. 31 Mar., 1894. 
ii. Laurent K., b. 31 Oct., 1895. 

He married (3) 8 June, 1902, E. Belle, daughter of Samuel 
E. and Sarah A. (Yorhies) Tuttle of Hamilton, Me. 

65. Harvey William Yarnum* {Jacob Guy/ Phineas," 
William,^ Ahrahain,'^ John/ Samuel/ George^). He is a civil 

engineer, road master and contractoi- for railroad woik. Re- 
sides at Jeffersonville, \t. Mariied 6 Jan., 187G, Ahby L., 
daughter of Jeremiah and Betsey M. (Hill) Stanton of Dan- 
ville, Yt. 
One child: 

Guy Robert.' 

i^Q. Byron Guy Yarnum® {Jacob Guy/ Phiveas/ Wil- 
liam/ Abraham/ John/ Samuel/ George^). He is a farmer, 


and lives on the home-farm of his father, Jacob Guy, which 
has been his since 1851, in Danville, Vt.; married 24 March, 
1883, EstelJa J., daughter of Joel M. and Jane (Nutting) 
Dole of Danville, Vt. 
One child: 

Mary Dole." 

67. Fraxklen" Martexett Yarnum' {FranMin Wyman 
Hildrith,*^ Asa,' Ahraham,^ William,^ Abraham* John,^ Sam- 
uel,' George^), born 9 Sept., 1862; died 4 Aug., 1891; married 
15 Nov., 1882, Jennie, daughter of Robert and Elizabeth 
(Brown) Stephens of Ireland. 

Four children: 

i. Rol)ert Monroe.'" 

ii. Burton Wyuian. 

iii. Ethel Stephens, m. 1895 Henry Buete of Washington, D. C. 

iv. John Cottrell. 

Franklin IVIartenett Yarnctm married when 22 years old, 
and at the early age of 27 was a victim to the ravages of con- 
sumption. He had been employed in Brooklyn, N. Y., where 
he lived, in the wire rope and cable manufacturing business. 




5. Joseph Yarnuim^ (Samuel,^ George^), born 15 March, 
1672; died 23 Dec, 1749. 

Among the very first entries in the records of Dracutt, com- 
memorating an event which occurred many years jDrevious, is 
tliis announcement, made by John Varnum, brother to Joseph, 
at that time Town Clerk: "Joseph Varnum & Ruth Jouett 
of Roully ware lawfully marrid in Octobear ye 3 day in the 
year 1697." 

Ruth was the daughter of Capt. Joseph and Ruth (Wood) 
eTcwett, and was born about 1681. Her tombstone in the little 
burial-ground, near the " Navy Yard " in Dracutt, adjoining 
the spot where for many years, up to 1900, stood the old Gar- 
rison House, the residence of Col. Joseph Yarnura, which 
sheltered in times of apprehended or actual danger the early 
settlers of the neighborhood, recites : 

Here lyes buried ye body of 

Mrs. Huth Varnum 

wf of Colonel eloseph Varnum 

who dyed November ye 28, 1728, 

In ye -8 year of her age. 

Seven children: 

i. Sarah,' b. 14 Dec., 1698; d, 30 Aug., 1731; m. 23 Feb., 

1714-5, Samuel Platts of Rowley, b. 30 Jan., 1693-4. 
ii. Ruth, b. 5 Feb., 1702-3; m. 4 Dec., 171!t, James, son of 

Thomas and Mary (Richardson) Colburu of Dracutt, who was 

born 31 Jan., 1G89-90. 


Five children (Colburn) : 

James, b. 7 Nov., 1720. 
Tiiomas, b. 16 Aug., 1723. 
Thomas, b. 16 Dec., 1729. 
Kuth, b. 16 July, 1732. 
Sarah, b. 24 Apr., 1737. 

100. iii. Joseph, Jr., b. 7 May, 1710; m. (1) Rachel Goodhue, (2) 

Abiah ilitchell, (3) Mrs. Anna Bowers. 

101. iv. Samuel, b. 21 Feb., 1714-15; m. (1) Mary Prime, (2) Han- 

nah Mitchell. - 
V. Deborali, b. 31 Dec, 1718; d. young. 

102. vi. John, b. 8 Sept., 1721 ; m. Anna Staule. 

vii. Mary, b. 6 July, 1723 ; m. Abel Platts of Rindge, N. H. 

Josiah Richardson, T. C, records: "M Dec 1743 Joseph 
Varnum Esq of Dracutt, entered with me his Intention of 
mai-riadge to Mrs. Mary Ban-on of Chelmsford." 

She was the daughter of Isaac and ]Mary (Adams) Barron. 
There was no issue to this second marriage, made when he was 
71 years of age. 

The honor and good faith of the man is shown by the fol- 
lowing abstract from his will, made 16 Sept., 1746: "Whereas, 
before mari-iadge with my beloved wife Mary Yarnum, I Cov- 
enanted with her that I would acquit all her Estate that she 
then owned by the Name of Mary Barron, and that I would not 
take or Receive any of her said Estate after marriadge with her, 
nor Demand any of her Right of Dower, that she might or 
could or would have either In possession or Reversion, and that 
she should have her Right of Dower or share in my personal 
Estate, as the Law Directs. I therefore leave the same to be 
settled to her according to Law." 

No record can be found of the death of Mary Barron Yar- 
num. She was buried by the side of Ruth Jewett Yarnum, in 
the same little burial-ground, the foot-stone to her grave marked 
M Y being the sole memorial of her final resting place. 


There is this puzzling entry in the Dracutt town book: 
" Aug. 11:, 1743. Deceased Gean wf of Collonel Joseph Yar- 
nuni." The record of his intention of marriage to Mary Bar- 
ron is Dec. 11, 1713, and it seems probable that the mistake 
arose from confusion of names. There is no evidence among 
family papers of the marriage of Col. Joseph Yarnum to any 
but Kuth Jewett and Mar}^ Barron, and in his will, made 171:0, 
while he names all his children by Ruth, his first wife, and also 
makes special reference to Mary Barron, nothing is said of any 
other marriage. His second marriage was fifteen years after 
the death of Ruth, and after all his children had taken unto 
themselves helpmates, and probably gone from the family roof. 

Col. Joseph Yarxoi was the sixth son of Samuel and 
Sarah (Langton) Yarnum, and the second child born to them 
after their settlement on the banks of the Merrimack. lie Avas 
probably born on the Chelmsford side of river, as there was a 
garrison there in which his father was an officer, and the Indians 
were not friendly, four years after the birth of Joseph attacking 
the father and his two eldest boys as they were crossing the 
river in a boat, and slaying the latter. He was probably bap- 
tized in infancy, as was the custom in the early days of our 
God-fearing ancestors, at the Parish Church in Chelmsford. 
After the King Philip ^Yar, about 1G76, when peace came to 
settlers in New England, the family took up their residence in 
" Drawcutt upon Mirrimack," the domain purchased of John 
Evered als Webb, their dwelling being on the land and adjacent 
to the house now owned and occupied by Thomas Yarnum, a 
lineal descendant of Thomas, brother to Joseph, about a mile 
above Pawtucket Bridge. Here with the Cobournes and Rich- 
ardsons they formed a community, which throve and prospered, 
until in 1702 it was strong enough to become a township, by 
authority of the General Court. 


He was chosen the first delegate from Dracutt, to represent 
his town at the Gi'eat and General Court of the Massachusetts 
Bay Colony. In the toAvn records appears this entry : " Aug. 9, 
1721, Made choice of Capt. Joseph Yarnum to sarve as repre- 
sentative of the Great & Genei'al Court," while under the 
entry in his own script is the following acceptance and agree- 
ment to serve : " This aforesaid ye Representative then chosen, 
doth enaage to sarve for the town at the Grate & Jenoral Cort 
the year ensuing upon free cost to the Town. 

AVitness my hand. Joseph Vaknum."* 

He was also chosen as representative in 1722. 

His name appears in the records of the members of the Gen- 
eral Court in 1721 with the title of Captain, and in 1722 with 
that of Major. 

There is a muster roll in the Massachusetts Archives (vol. 
91, p. 57) signed by Joseph Varnum, Sergt. It is a roll of a 
company on scout to Haverhill 13^ weeks, from Jan. 21 to 
Nov. 29, 1722. The signature is not that of Joseph Yarnum, 
the subject of this sketch, who was at that date Major, and who 
under that title was chosen in 1722 to represent Dracutt at the 
General Court. It is that of a younger man. His son Joseph, 
afterwards a Major on his father's staff, was then twelve years 

*"Anno Regni Regis Georgio Octavo. At a Great & General Court Assembly for his 
Majestys Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, begun & held at Boston upon 
AVednesday, the twenty third day of August, 1721, being Convened by his Majestys writ: 
Beuj : Lynde, Add Davenport, Thomas Fitch and Edmund Quincy, Esqrs., by virtue of a 
Commission of Dedimus Potestatem from his Excellency the Governor, administered to the 
several Gentlemen returned from the Respective Towns to serve as their representatives in 
the Present General Assembly The oaths appointed by Act of Parliament to be taken Instead 
of the oath of allegiance & Supremacy and Caused them to repeat & subscribe The Test or 
Declaration and the oath of Abjuration,In order to Qualify them to sit and Form their 

The names of the Representatives for the several Towns are returned into the Secretary's 
office as follows, vi^ : 

In the County of Middlesex, Dracutt, Captain Joseph Varnum. 
(with 93 others). 
Massachusetts Court RoUs, p. 200. Samuel Shute, Gov. 


old, having been l)orn in 1710. It could, therefore, not have 
been him. 

It is probable that this was another Joseph Varnum, just as 
there was another John Yarnum who lived in Concord, married 
Elizabeth Coburn May 26, 1721, and died Oct. 19, 1721, in the 
29th year of his age, who cannot be identified as belonging to 
the Dracutt Varnums. 

Parker Varnum, in his narrative, says he was Colonel of a 
troop of horse, and his sons Joseph, born 1710, and Samuel, 
born 1715, derived their titles as Major from service on the 
staff of their father. As evidence of his official I'ecognition, 
there is on file in the State Archives of Massachusetts (vol. 
102, leaf 119) a letter dated 21 April, 1711, addressed, among 
other officers, to Col. Varnum, written under the authority of 
the then Provincial Governor Jonathan Belcher,* asking infor- 
mation " whether any officers in your regiment have in any 
ways encouraged the passing of the bills called the Land Bank 
or Manufactory Bills."t 

He was a great landed proprietor in Dracutt, and the East 
Cambridge records from 1699 to 1713, contain numerous con- 
veyances of his. One of the earliest acts of the town appeal's 
in this entry : 

• It is told of the same Col. Varnum that one hot, sultry clay he was at work mowing in 
one of the fields of his numerous acres. He was clad comfortably — his shirt and his broad- 
rimmed straw hat covering his body. As neighbors were far apart and visitors few, it may 
be safely assumed that our early ancestors were not always in full regalia. 

While thus busily engaged, not dreaming of any visit, at least, of ceremony, word was 
brought him that the Governor was close at hand on his way to make him a call. 

The Colonel took a short cut to his house, not far off, on the double quick, hastily donned 
his military coat and chnpcau, girt on his sword, and came out to receive the Governor in 
military state, Alas! in his hurry and excitement he had forgotten his knee-breeches and 
buckled shoes, and stood bare- legged before his Excellency. 

+ There was, at that date, an issuance of bills or promises to pay by a combination of landed 
proprietors, based on ownership of real estate, — the progenitor of the farm mortgage deben- 
tures of recent days. They were issued under no authority of law, and called for stern re- 
pression by the Provincial authorities, and brought much trouble finally to the authors who 
bad to redeem their individual paper. 


"Dracutt, Nov. 3, 1712. Samuel Prime,* after our (order) is pre- 
sented to yourself that the Selectmen of Dracutt have given, you have 
full liberty to sell to Joseph Varnum the said tract of land, that is below 
Mr. Winthrops farm. Some of it is above which is mcddow, with all the 
privileges which belong to said Lott. 

John Vaentm, ? o i ^ » 

Ebenezer Goodhue, J Selectmen. 

This piece of landf must have contained upwards of 1500 
acres, according to the plat of it, with the following endorse- 
ment thereon : 

" Maj. Varnums Prime lot on ye northeast of ^Merrimack River with all 
ye divisions which were laid to it. Ye bounds were renewed all around 
it, and there was present Maj. Varnum, Capt. Hildreth, Ephraim Curtice, 
Doct John Barritte, Ebenezer Wright, Joseph Arnold, Ebenezer Frost. 

Oct. 30, 1722. Samuel Daneorth, Surveyor." 

Another piece of land bounded by Island Pond, in Pelham, 
N. H., was a part of Dracutt before the dismemberment of the 
town by the decree of King George the 2nd, in 1741. The 
plat is endorsed by Samuel Danforth, surveyor: 

"Dracutt, Oct., 1729. This land was measured for Collo : Varnum 
and it contains about 580 acres. The bounds of it were shewed to me 
by Collo : Varnum who was one of the Committee that laid it out." 

The homestead farm of Col. Joseph Varnum is set forth in 
his own handwriting, and is as follows : 

*" These are the names of the men that have the Lotts in possession with the consent of the 
General Courts Committee, and some that have sold to others with the Consent of the Select- 
men of the town. » * • » Samuel Prime, His Lot lyes below Mr. Winthrops 
farme lying on ye River, 

John Varnum, "j 

Joseph Colbdbn, V Selectmen." 
Middlesex Records, Vol. xxvii., page 500. Ebenezee Goodhue, j 

t This land ran down the river from above Cobuin's, now Richardson's brook, thence as 
far as Varnum's brook, thence north to," Higginson's Comer" (above Mr. Samuel Parker's), 
thence easterly to " Loon " Hill, and southerly to point of beginning. It was deeded to hia 
son Samuel, and comprises a part of the farm occupied by Gen. Joseph Bradley Varnum, his 
grandson, and is now owned by the compiler of this history. 

The Old Garrison House 

Buiit by and the residence of Col. Joseph Varnum 
Erected about lyio Torn down in t88j 

josicni: 'niiiii) (jknuihation I'J.'l 

" KUAOI TT. O.'l. 'Jit, IV'Ji!. 

"I JoBCpli Varniim nl" I>imi'mII' iciunvnd yt^ IxiiiikIh of my (hiiii 
tliiit I iiiivv livo (111 . liiiiiiiilcil SiiiitliwcHhviiiilly liy Mi'niiiinck liviT, imihI- 
wiirdly liy 15ciivt'r liroitk tti n. vvliil<> itiik trcti iiimi'Io'iI mikI Irdi'i'i'il wliii'li 
wliiU; link MlaiiilM HJ rods IViiiii yi? inciiilli "Cn lidlr liniitk wliicli i« I'lillcil 

Arif^illia l)rooU, vvlinicc it riiiiH irilo Mciivcr lirook i\!. IVoiii ye niuiitl I' 

su'ul limok Hoiitliweotwiirrlly, iiml I liiiil nIoik^h in Nitid lico mid llion I iiiii 
Norddy u|) Hctivcr lironk idioiit lit |i(d<s iind not (iiKlin^^ iIki lioiindi* I 
made II lu^iip oThIoiich nriir wdd lnoidc, tlirii niniii;^f wi'dlcrly iiVdl' li ^I'l'iit, 
rock willi MtdiicH ii|iiin il, (o ye- wi'Mlcily line (if ye Cmiiiic, tlicii I lic|,';iili lit, 
ISIciiiiuack river iil. ii. Iiiiiicli (if i''diiiH wllii «I(iii(^m r\t llniii, wliicli (i'ccn 
Btmid lit yc f^rcal; (iNliiii^' fiillH, wliicli in my w(^Mt, V\i\<'. Sd niiiiiijj Ndillicriy 
11)1 a jii'cat liill to II liliick oiik miirkcd with m(oiich at i(, then |iiiilly down 
hill to iilack oak triiirkiMl vvilli HtoticH at il, (Imti riming NiM'tiici'ly to a 
wliilc oak croHBiil^ a H\viim|i willi iiiarkH and mIiiiich at, il, (licii niniilli^ 
ipiirtly .\'"\\'(;Nt('rly to ii wliitc oak on ImIiiikI willi hIoiicm and l.licii |iai'lly 
N"wardly croHMin;,' y(^ mcdow to a Mack oak iiiarkctd willi hIoiicm ill, il, and 
HO niiiiiig partly Nortliwcdt to ye, (iiid ol'y(! fariiK^ with Iiccn iiiiirkci! and 
HtoncH at it. 

"All thcHc LoimdM I renewed liy ye plaK, and ye ('ovcniint wan miidii 
hctwc'cn UH hrcthren 'l'honian .Fohii iV, dohitjih Varmim, mider linii'l and 
«cal with the ftMHlHtance of ICiieiiozur Wrij^lit .JoHcpli AinoM mid Hiimiinl 
J);infoith Surveyor." 

'riic, afoff'M.'iid luinl \v;iH at, \.\\i: I )ra(iilt. " Navy '^'iird," imw 
SO (tailed, ami fell lo ITih hoii Maj. .J<)Hf|)li Viiiiimii. (>ii IIiIn 
fanri waw located one of llie (iarilHon IIoiihih of I lie, l.ovvii, I lie, 
rfcKideiicc ol' (.'ol. .JoHepli Vaiinmi, wliieli Ktood near to liii; 
banltH of the M«jniiriacl< up to 1000. 'I'lic town icconU rcoitt;, 
".Ian. I{l, 1710. Voted to liav*; a town hIo' 1< oC aniMiniiil Ion 
the .satne, to Ixt Uc\ti at (Japt. .loHcpli V'arinimH," 

The ''Great I>iint,"or fiHhiiif^ plae<! ()( the river, was in Iront 
of tlxr JoHcpli V'arniiiii farm. 'I'he |)i'o])iielof hhariH in the 
Great Jiunt were at one tini<- forty-two. In IT.'i'i G(d. .loneph 
Yarniirn and Ii'ih hoii .loHepli, .Jr., (granted lo the (own oi' I >raentt 
"liberty to paHH over their land from the e(»iinty roiel al (lie 


great fishing falls at Pawtucket, reserving a place for catching 
& curing fish, extending from the place called the lower hole 
to the Old Bunting Place." 

In 1736, according to Court Records (Yol. xiii., pp. 388), 
there was presented " a petition of Col. Joseph Varnum for a 
grant of a piece of Province land near the town of Dracutt, 
Containing forty acres (in consideration of the Peti's services 
and suff'erings in the wars against the Indians)" which was 
granted. This adjoined the Prime purchase. This is the 
only record of a Grant from the Province of the Massachusetts 
Bay Colony in New England, made to an original proj^rietor 
of the town. 

The will of Joseph Varnum made 16 Sept., 1746, three years 
prior to his decease, is filed at East Cambridge. 

In it he mentions his wife INIary Barron; his daughters 
Sarah Plats, Ruth Coburn, and Mary Plats, who receive an 
equal share of his estate, and recites, " Whereas I have already 
Given to my three sons out of my Estate By Deeds to ye valine 
of 1000£ (old tenor) to each of them. In full of their portion, 
I thei'cfore do not Give them anything in this my Last Will." 
The dates of record of deeds by which conveyance is made to 
said sons are May 14, 1737, April 30 and May 30, 1743. He 
makes his eldest son Joseph his executor. 

W^ith this will is filed the inventory customary in his day, 
and is listed as follows : 

1— 8t Wearing Apparill. 

Imprimis : 

A Blew Broadcloth & Jackit .... 

A hat, lace & feather . • . 

A Gray BroaJcloth Coat & Breaches & a black Jackit 

A Blew woolen Coat, a Jackit & Breaches 

A Blew grate Coat 8£ 5 a gray Coat & Jackit 6£ 

An old Coat 208 a grate Coat & girdle 408 a hat 458 










Gloves, Ilnndkorchiefs, Weed & Wig 408 Shirts & caps (!£ 8 

Hose, Shoos c^ Shoo Buckuls 7£ & Muft' 15s . . 7 15 

A pare of pistols 9£ a Cain 2[)s . . . . . 10 5 

A Xeagro man servant named Cuff* .... 320 

A Neagro woman servant named Pegg .... 230 
which with various items of household furniture 

& utensils amounted to . . . . . 149 2£ 2 5 

Colonel Yarnum died nearly one hundred and sixty years 
ago, full of years and of honors. Tie was buried near where 
he lived in the little plat alotted by him as the burial jilace of 
himself and his descendants, and where lie the remains of many 
of his immediate f\nni!y. In front stood the house built by him 
which served as a " Garrison House,"' and stood as a protec- 
tion against the hostile Indians, close by what is now known 
as the " Xavy Yard," where Beaver Brook has for many years 
fui'nished power for manufacturies. 

100. Joseph Yaknum, Jk.* (Joseph,^ Samuel,^ Oeorge^), 
born 7 May, 1710; died 2(3 Aug., 1783. He married (1) " May 
ye 2.5, 1739, Joseph Yarnum, Jr., entered with me his Inten- 
tion of marraidg to Eachel Goodhue, both of Dracutt." — John 
Yarnum, T. C. 

She Avas the daughter of Dea. Ebenezer and Mary Goodhue, 
and was born 28 June, 1719; died 16 March, 1746-7. 

Four children: 

i. liachel,^ b. 21 Nov., 1740; m. (1) Int. 24 Sept., 1759, John 

Bowers; (2) William Bell, 
ii. Joseph, b. 16 Nov., 1741 ; d. 4 Aug., 1743. 

• Cuff is snid to have been a very bright darkey and unusually shrewd. One day his 
master the Colonel got into a discussion about some matter with a neighbor, while Cuff stood 
by, listening with interest. Cuff gave some peculiar sort of a grunt, after the neighbor had 
made some assertion, at which the man became very indignant. " Do you think I am lying, 
Cuff? " he asked. " No Massa, I dossent say as I does, but you talk mighty like I does when 
I isn't speaking de troof." 

There is in existence " a deed of sale by Thos Farmer & wife of Billcrca Mass of one certain 
neagro boy called Mingo, aged about nine months old to Joseph Varnum of Dracutt 1728." 

126 VAKNTUM gen:ealogt. 

iii. Joseph, h. 3 Oct., 1743; d. 5 Oct., 1750. 

103. iv. Ebenezer, b. 23 Feb., 1744-5; m. 1) Sarah Butterfield ; 

(2) Hannah Fox; (3) Eunice Bro- 

He married (2) " Aug. 15, 1747, Maj. Joseph Varnum of 
Dracutt entered with me his Intention of Marriadg to Abiah 
Mitchell of Haverhill."— Josiah Richardson, T. C. 

She was the daughter of Capt. James and Martha (Bradley) 
Mitchell, and sister to Hannah, second wife of his brother 
Samuel. She died 27 Dec, 1753. 

Four children: 

i. Abiah, b. 13 Nov., 1748; d. 30 Sept., 1750. 

104. ii. Bradley, b. 19 Aug. 1750; m. Rachel Butterfield. 

105. iii. Joseph, Jr., b. 1 May, 1752; m. Mary Coburn. 
iv. Martha, b. 22 Dec, 1753; d. 3 Jan., 1754. 

He married (3) (Int.) '' 17 Jan., 1761, Maj. Joseph Yarnum 
entered with me his Intention of marriage to Widow Anna 
Bowers, both of Dracutt."— Ephm. Hildreth, T. C. 

She was born 1707, died 26 Nov., 1778. She was the mother 
of John Bowers who married Rachel Yarnum, as above. No 

He lived and died on the acres given him by his father, 
which was the homestead farm near to and bordering on Bea- 
ver brook in Dracutt, and opposite the Great Bunt or bend of 
the Merrimack, where it changes its course almost at right an- 
gle on its way to the sea. He was generally known as Major 
Joseph, which military title came from his position on the staff 
of his father. His domain embraced land along Beaver brook, 
where the " l^avj Yard " now is, and down to where said brook 
enters the river, and fi-om thence, up to Pawtucket falls. This 
was a part of the Shatswell-Yanium purchase, increased by 
land purchased by the Yanium brothers and subsequently con- 
veyed by Thomas and John to Joseph. 


Major Tarnum was town clerk in 1765, and for many years 
treasurer of Draci John Varnum says in his journal : 

" Jan. 16, 1777, I ' employed in Reckoning witli the town 
treasurer, Maj : Joseph Varnum (a four years reckoning) , and 
found 10 d in the Major's Favor." He was a man of great 
probity of character, of sterling integrity, and actively alive to 
the interests of the Country, at a time when, having been born 
a subject to Great Britain, he was called upon to support the 
cause of the Colonies. On the 16 IS^ov., 1776, there was held 
at his house at Dracutt a " Convention of Agents from about 
iO towns in Massachusetts and New Hampshire." Its object 
was, " to take into consideration the alarming situation of our 
Public affairs at this time, on account of the exhorbitant prices 
that are demanded and taken in consideration for many of the 
necessities of life, by which means our paper money is daily 
depreciating in value, and the mechanic and laborer very much 
disturbed by the extortion of the merchant, tradesman, farmer 
and others, whereby many good and valuable men are much 
discouraged from engaging in the service of these States to 
the great damage of the Continental array, on which, under 
God, the future safety and well-being very much depends." 

The action of the Convention resulted in a petition being 
placed before the Legislatures of Massachusetts, New Hamp- 
shire, Connecticut, Rhode Island and the Providence Planta- 
tions. The committee appointed by the respective Legislatures 
was made up of Hous. Thos: Cushing, Tristam Dalton, Azor 
Orne for Massachusetts; Hons. ElijDhalet Dyer, Richard Law, 
Titus Hosmcr, Nathaniel Wales for Connecticut; Stephen 
Hopkins, William B. Bradford, Henry Ward for Rhode Island 
and the Providence Plantations — all men of prominence and 
ability, and one of them a signer of the Declaration of Inde- 
pendence. The committee met at Providence 25 Dec, 1776, 
and adjourned to 2d Jan., 1777. No record appears of any 



adjustment or solution of the financial trouble, which was in- 
herent with the times. In the New Hampshire Historical 
Society is the manuscript journal of the proceedings. 

He was buried in the garrison house burial gi'ound, in the 
Varnum family range, at the ripe old age of 83. 

101. Samuel Vakntjm, Jr.* (Joseph^ Samuel,^ Oeorge^), 
born 21 Feb., 1714-5; died 17 April, 1797; married " 4 Jan., 
1736-7. Samuel Varnum then marrid To Mary Prime, both 
of Dracntt. The said Mary Deceased on the 8 June, 1737, and 
the said Samuel was marrid to Hannah Mitchell of Haverhill 
ye 26 Oct., 1738." (Dracntt T. R.) 

Mary Prime was the daughter of Samuel Prime of Ipswich, 
who held one of the first grants in " ye wilderness," afterward 
bought by Col. Joseph A'arnum, the father of Samuel, and 
known as the " Prime purchase." Samuel Prime married Sarah, 
and Col. Joseph Tarnum, Ruth Jewett, sisters, of Ipswich. 
•^ Hannah Mitchell, born WSi, died July,V,1795, was the 
daughter of Capt. James and Martha (Bradley) Mitchell of 
Haverhill, and sister to Abiah, wife of Maj. Joseph, brother to 
Samuel. From these two unions came the name of Bradley, 
so frequently, down to the present generation, appearing with 
the Yarnum name. In the family of Samuel and Hannah first 
appears the double name. 

Twelve children: 

i. Mary," b. 1 Jan., 1739-40; d. 2 Dec, 1746. 

ii. James, b. 5 Dec, 1741 ; d. 7 Jan., 1746-7. 

iii. Hannah, b. 1 Nov., 1744; d. 1 Jan., 1746-7. 

106. iv. Samuel, b. 17 Feb., 1746-7; m. Mary Parker. 

V. James Mitchell, b. 17 Dec, 1748; m. Martha Child. 

107. vi. Joseph Bradley, b. 29 Jan., 1749-50; m. Molly Butler.* 

108. vii. Hannah, b. 24 Feb., 1753; d. 27 Nov., 1806; m. (int.) 9 

July, 1772, Josiah Hildreth, Jr. 

sajniuel: ronRTH gejs^eration. 129 

viii. INIary, b. 6 May, 1755; m. (int.) 24 Jan., 1784, Lt. David 
Lindsay of Dracutt. 
One child : 

David Lindsay, b. at Thornton, N. H., 7 Oct., 1785. 

ix. Abiah, b. 27 Feb., 1757; m. (int.) 10 Apr., 1779 Samuel, 
Barron of Dracutt. 
Nine children (Barron) : 

Elisha, b. 6 Mar., 1780. 

Lydia. b. 7 July, 1782. 

Abiah Varnum, b. 20 May, 1783. 

Samuel Varnum, b. 17 July, 1784; d. 4 Jan., 1805. 

James ISlitchell, b. 16 Jan., 1786; m. Persia H. Varnum. 

Abiah Mitchell, b. 7 Mar., 1789. 

Hannah, b. 16 Apr., 1791. 

Martha Varnum. b. 11 Aug., 1793; m. James Stevens. 

Joseph Bradley, b. 7 May, 1803. 

X. Abigail, b. 1 Oct., 1759; d. 4 Jan., 1805; m. 29 Dec, 
1784, Benjamin, son of Elisha and Lydia (Jests) Barron 
of Dracutt, b. 22 Feb., 1756, d. 1 Mar., 1816. 
Seven children (Barron), all born in Peeling, now Woodstock, 
N. n. : 

Benjamin Mitchell, b. 5 Nov., 1785. 
John Varnum, b. 2 jNIav, 1787. 
Abigail, b. 19 Jan., 1789. 
Oliver, b. 17 July, 1791. 
Do Lafayette, b. 10 Aug., 1793. 
Hannah, b. 1 ■May, 1795. 
Martha, b. 2 Sept., 1797. 

109. xi. Daniel, b. 22 Feb., 1762; m. (1) Persis Hale, (2) Polly 
xii. Martha, b. 25 Feb., 1764; m. 25 Nov., 1790, Samuel Man- 
sur, Jr. " 25 Apr., 1765, A Fast at Dracutt previous to ye 
calling of a minister. I administered I>a[)ti8m, p. m., to 
Martha, a dau. of Maj. Samuel Varnums. Supped at Maj. 
Joe Varnums." — Diary of Kev. Ebenczer Bridge of Chelms- 


Samuel Vaenxti was a Major in his father's, Col. Joseph 
Yarnum, "troop of horse," and was known as Major Samuel. 
The Jr. to his name was to distinguish him from his cousin, 
Samuel, son of Thomas, who was 11 years his senior. He 
settled on the " Prime purchase," bought by his father in 1712 
of Samuel Prime, whose daughter he, at 22 years of age, mar- 
ried. This property was deeded to him by his father during 
his lifetime. He was a farmer, and lived and died on the 
aforesaid farm, which was located on the river road to Methuen 
and Haverhill. He was Town Clerk of Dracutt from 1751 to 
1765. He was buried in a plat of ground on his farm deeded 
by him as a burial place for his and neighboring families. 

He was a member of the " trainmg band " commanded by 
his son, Capt. Joseph Bradley Yarnum, and not being of age 
for active service in the Continental Army, patriotically hired 
a substitute in 1778 to serve. 

Of his two sous, who became especially distinguished, James 
Mitchell Yarnum was named after Capt. James Mitchell, the 
father, and Joseph Bradley Yarnum after the grandfather, of 
his second wife. Both Captains Mitchell and Bradley were 
Haverhill men, and renowned Indian fighters. Joseph Bradley 
had command of the 5th Fort, located in the northerly part of 
the town. " His wife was captured," as Judge Sewall says in 
his Diary, "in the terrible massacre of Feb. 6, 1703-1, and sold 
by the Indians to the French for 50 livres." Her worth to her 
husband is evidenced by his having redeemed her after two 
years of captivity, ti'a veiling to Canada on foot accompanied 
only by his dog. 

John A'arnum in his Journal says : 

" 14 April 1777, Training at Maj. Sam' Varnum's. Capt. James at- 
tended to trie to enlist men for ye Wars without success." 

" 20 Jan. 177y. Went to Maj : Saml Varnum's to examine a Compt 
made Agst Ruth Chase by Kendal Parker, for her stealing from him sun- 


dry goods. The goods was found in her hands. She pleaded Guilty. 
Begd th Favor tliat slie might be excused from the whip but being an old 
oti'ender I ordered her to be whipt 10 Lashes on the stripped back, to re- 
store 3 fold Damages, to pay Costs & fees & stand committed till per- 
formed, which sentence was the same day fulfilled." 

102. JoiiN Yaknutvi, Jr.* (JosepJi,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 
8 Sept, 1721; died 20 July, 1786; marned "28 Aug., 1741, 
John Varniim of Dracutt enterred with me his Intention of 
Marriadg to Ann Staule of Haverhill." — John Varnum, T. C. 

Ten children: 

i. Ruth, Mi. 17 July, 1743; m. 11 Nov., 17(53, ,Tohn Mansur, 
Jr., of Methuen. 

ii. Sarah, b. 26 Sept., 174.5; m. (int.) 27 Mar., 1765, Samuel 
Mansur of Methuen. 

iii. Meliitable, b. 19 Apr., 1748; d. in infancy. 

iv. John, Jr., b. 22 Dec, 1749. 

V. Benjamin, b. 4 June, 1752; m. 16 Oct., 1780, Polly Elliot. 
He cannot be traced as to family ; and as nothing appears in 
the Dracutt recoi-ds as to his descendants, it is assumed that 
he and his wife Polly had no issue. Both were living 30 
Aug., 1799, as appears from a conveyance recorded at East 
Cambridge. Tiie Dracutt records give " A list of tiie men's 
names who have done more than their ratable Proportion 
in the War, as upon an Everidge made in said town in the 
year 1777, that belong to tiie second company in said town, 
Benj : Varnum 3£." On tlie liovolutionary Cluster Rolls in 
the Massachusetts State Arcliives, he is described as " Benj : 
Yarnum, private, 5ft. 8in., in Capt. Joseph Bradley Yar- 
num's Company, Col. S. Spaulding's regiment of Train Band, 
1777. Belonged to 2nd Dracutt Company. Hired for nine 
months, 20£. Keported returned from captivity ; dinchargcd 
1 Ai)ril, 1779." 

Under the act granting pensions to soldiers of the Revolu- 
tionary War, awards were made to "Samuel Yarnum, K. I. 
line, Me., and Benj : Yarnum, Mass. line, Yt., privates." 


It seems possible that the latter was the aforesaid Benjamin 

vi. Anna, b. 25 Dec, 1756 ; m. 16 Oct., 1788, Nehemiah Abbott, 
vii. Jewett, b. 20 ]Mar., 1759. 
110. viii. Moses, b. 9 Aug., 1760; m. (1) Lucy Mercer, (2) Sarah 

ix. Joel, b. 11 Aug., 1763. 
X. D0II7, b. 23 May, 1769. 

JoiEsr Vakxttm, Jr., was in Capt. Peter Coburn's Company 
from Draciitt, and fought at the battle of Bunker's Hill. His 
name appears on the muster roll of said company as from 
Methuen. Ebenezer Yarnum, 2d Lt., James and Jonas Var- 
num, privates, of said company, were his nephews. Another 
John Varnum of Capt. Hezekiah Hutchin's Co., Col. James 
Reed's regiment of !New Hampshire militia, a cousin of his, 
was wounded in the same battle. (See line of John.) Capt. 
Coburn's Co. were 8 months' men, and private Varnum's name 
appears on Coat Rolls, vol. Ivi, p. 182, vol. Ivii, p. 19, dated 
Cambridge, 20 Nov., 1775, seven months after said battle. 

In his will, filed at Salem, dated "Methuen, Ist Feb., 
1775, in the 15th year of his Majesty's reign," he devises to 
his wife Ann and his children — Ruth, wife of John Mansur, 
Jr. ; Sarah, wife of Stephen Mansur, and mentions Aima, Ben- 
jamin, Moses and Joel. The witnesses to this instrument were 
John, Parker, and Jonas Varnum. 

103. Ebexezek VAKsmvi* {Joseph* Joseph,^ Samuel^ 
George'), born 23 Feb., 1744-5; died 13 March, 1813; married 
(1) 12 Dec, 1765, by Rev..]S^athan Davis, to Sarah Butterfield 
of Dunstable, sister to Rachel Butterfield, wife of his half- 
brother Bradley. Sarah died in childbirth, 17 March, 1767. 

Married (2) 28 March, 17G8, Hannah, daughter of Isaac and 
Abigail (Prescott) Fox of Acton, who was born 12 July, 

ebexezer: fifth genera.tiox. 133 

Eight children: 
111. i. Prescott, h. 16 Mar., 1769; m. (1) Elizabeth McAlister, (2) 
Lydia Kichardson, (3) Eunice Brown, 
ii. Hannah, b. 19 Feb., 1770; m. (int.) 27 Nov., 1794, Phincas 

Whiting of Chelmsford. No issue. 
iii. Dorcas, b. 8 Jan., 1772; m. 21 Feb., 1797, Phineas Cham- 
berlin of Bedford, ISlass. 
Six children (Chamberlin) : 

Dorcas, b. 6 Dec, 1797 ; m. Timothy Phelps. 
Lydia Smith, b. 25 Oct., 1799; d. 13 Sept., 1854. 
David Varnum, b. 6 Mar., 1801 ; d. 22 May, 1833. 
Phineas Wliiting, b. 2 Sept., 1803; d. 9 Jan., 1809; m. 

(1) Almira Hatch, (2) Esther Blood. 
Benjamin Adams, b. 22 June, 1806. 
Enoch Lane, b. 8 Feb., 1808; d. 5 Sept., 1885. 
iv. Sarah, b. 9 July, 1773 ; m. James Moore. 
V. lihoda, b. 11 Jan., 1775; m. John, son of Matthew and Janet 
(Wallace) Dickey of Londonderry, N. H., b. 19 Jan., 1766, 
d. 12 Sc])t., 1837. 
Fourteen ciiildren (Dickey) : 

John Pinkerton, b. 21 Aug., 1796; d. 21 Dec, 1875. 
James Yarnum, b. 11 Sept., 1797 ; d. 14 Oct., 1873. 
Phineas Whiting, b. 26 Dec, 1798; d. 6 Dec, 1874. 
Hannah Whiting, b. 4 Aug., 1800; d. 10 Feb., 1886, 
Jane Wallace, b. 3 Dec, 1801 ; d. 24 Jan., 1874. 
Henry, b. 4 Mar., 1803; d. 4 Mar., 1853. 
William Gage, b. 8 Aug., 1804; d. 10 May, 1889. 
Oilman, b. 8 Mar., 1806; d. 12 Mar., 1892. 
Matthew ^Vallace, b. 13 Dec, 1807; d. 31 Mar., 1812. 
George Keed, b. 12 July, 1809; d. 11 May, 1810. 
Sarah Clarissa, b. 17 Aug., 1811 ; d. 29 Mar., 1871. 
Charles, b. 3 Apr., 1813; d. 13 Jan., 1879. 
George Wallace, b. 24 Mar., 1815; d. 16 Feb., 1816. 
Albert Prescott, b. 24 Mar., 1817 ; d. 23 Oct., 1880. 
vi. Betsey, b. 8 Jan., 1777; d. 8 Nov., 1845; m. 24 Dec, 
1801, Robert, son of John Burnett of Londonderry, N. H., 
b. 14 Sept., 1772, d. 22 Nov., 1847. 


Eight children (Barnett) : 

Eliza, b. 28 Apr., 1802; m. 21 Juiy, 1835, Philip Green- 
leaf of Bradford, Vt. 

Oilman, b. 9 Sept., 1803; d. 4 Oct., 1888; m. 28 Apr., 
1831, Mary Burroughs, b. 21 Nov., 1807, d. 14 Jan., 

Clarissa, b. 11 Apr., 1805; m. Charles Bryant of Sher- 
brook, P. Q. She died there. 

Persia, b. 15 Feb., 1807 ; m. 9 May, 1850, Ephraim Bag- 
ley of Topsham, Vt. 

Hannah, b. 3 April, 1808; m. 20 Sept., 1832, Samuel H. 
Rowe of Stanstead, P. Q. She died there. 

Carleton O., b. at Topsham, Vt., 9 July, 1811 ; died there, 
6 May, 1894; m. 23 Dec, 1841, Elizabeth P. BaUey, 
b. 1 Feb., 1817, d. 22 Aug., 1856. 

Anna, b. at Newbury, Vt., 22 Sept., 1814 ; d. Jan., 1899 ; 
m. 4 Apr., 1867, Ezekiel Johnson of Bradford, Vt., d. 
9 Oct., 1880. 

Frye Bayley, b. at Newbury, Vt., 11 Mar., 1819; d. at 
Methuen, Mass., 1858. 

112. vii. Phineas, b. 21 Nov., 1778; m. Prudence Fox. 
viii. Susanna, b. 1782; d. 26 Oct., 1800. 

He married (3), in 1801, Eunice Brown. No issue. 

Ebexezer Vaestjm lived in the uj^per part of Draeutt, near 
Pelham, and was a farmer by occupation. John Prescott Var- 
num, his great grandson, says in his notes : " He was in Capt. 
Peter Coburn's Company at the battle of Bunker Hill, where 
he fought in the redoubt under his wife's own cousin, Col. 
William Prescott of Pe^Di^erell. My grandmother remembered 
him very well. She says that he was over six feet tall, very 
heavy, with huge legs, and that up to the time of his death, he 
wore stockings and shorts, or knee-breeches. He had a sten- 
torian voice and a powerful will. He married, late in life, Miss 

ebejtezer: fifth gexeration. 135 

Eunice Brown, against the wishes of his children. It is my 
recollection that grandmother (Mrs. Col. Prescott Varnum) 
said that he outlived his last wife. He left a large property." 

His name appears in a pay roll for military services under 
the crown (Military Rolls, 1761 to 1761, leaf 157, State 
Archives), in Capt. Moses Parker's Company, Ebenezer Var- 
num, private, service from 11 June, 1761, to 7 Jan., 1762. He 
used to assert that he was at Ticonderoga and Crown Point; 
and as many exjieditions were sent out from Massachusetts Bay 
Colony at that date, in one of which his cousin John Yarnuni 
was a Lieutenant, and many Dracutt men privates, it is probable 
that this was a part of his said services. At this date he Avas 
16 years old. His name also appears in the Lexington Alarm 
Rolls, vol. xii, page 25, in the return made by Capt. Peter 
Coburn "Colony of Massachusetts Bay, Dec. .30, 1775," as 2d 
Lieutenant. At this time he received his commission, as ap- 
pears from the records: "Ebenezer Varnura, rank Ensign. 
Ordered in Provincial Congress, Watertown, 27 May, 1775, 
that said officer be commissioned Lieutenant, 29 Dec., 1775." 
This is the company in which so many of his kinsmen served 
as members of the train band, and who marched to Lexington 
at the call of the Committee; Parker, James and Jonas Var- 
num, brothers, Bradley Varnum, a cousin, and John Varnum, 
an uncle. His name also appears in a " Return of Capt. IVtcr 
Coburn's Company, Col. Bridges' Regt., Sept. 26, 1775, Eben- 
ezer Varnum, 2d Lt." (Bunker Hill Rolls, vol. xii., p. 25). Jn 
this company was James and Jonas Vai-num, his cousins, and 
John Yarnum, his uncle. Jn Court Records (State Archives, 
vol. xxxvi, p. 71) there is this entry: "Friday, Oct. 25, 1776, 
In the House of Representatives, Resolved, that there be allowed 
and paid out of the public Treasury to Lieut. Ebenezer Vai'iuun 
33 Shillings for losses he sustained in the battle on Bunker's 
Hill on the 17 June, 1775." John Varnum of Candia, N. H., 


his cousin, for similar losses in the same battle, was allowed by 
the State of New Hampshire. 

In the Dracutt town book there is this entry: "To Major 
Joseph Varnum, Treasurer of the town of Dracutt, or his suc- 
cessor in office, pay to Lt. Ebenezer Yarnum Three pounds for 
shoes for the soldiers." 

Thos. Hovey, Parker Varnum, Jos. B. Varnum, 
Selectmen of Dracutt. 
Dracutt ye 9th Feb., 1779. 

Lieutenant Varnum was buried in the Hildreth Cemetery, 
id his grave is marke 
American Revolution. 

and his grave is marked with the insignia of the Sons of the 

104. Bkadley Vakntum^ (Joseph,* Joseph^ Samuel^ 
George'), born 31 Aiig., 1750; died 15 Oct., 1799; married 12 
Dec, 177], by Rev. Nathan Davis, to Rachel, daughter of Capt. 
Joseph and Elizabeth (Richardson) Butterfield of Dunstable, 
and sister to Sarah, wife of Ebenezer Varnum, his half-brother. 
She was born 27 Jan., 1751; died 3 June, 1835. 
Nine children; 

i. Kachel,* b. 12 Sept., 1773; d. 23 June, 1857; m. 1 May, 
1796, to Jacob Howard of Chelmsford, a descendant and oc- 
cupant of the ancestral acres of the Howards in whose field 
the Varnum boys (George and Samuel) were buried in 1C76, 
when slain by the Indians (see ante, pp. 9 and 10). 
Five children (Howard) : 
Charles, b. 16 Sept., 1797. 
Clarissa, b. 23 Nov., 1800. 
Caroline, b. 25-Apr., 1804. 
Mary, b. 21 Mar., 1813. 
Harriet, b. 14 Jan., 1815. 

113. ii. Joseph Butterfield, b. 28 Sept., 1775; m. Phebe Spaulding. 

114. iii. Bradley, Jr., b. 2 June, 1778; m. Julia Ansart. 

bkadley: fifth gexekation. 137 

iv. Ablah Mitchell, b. 23 Apr., 1780; d. unm. 20 May, 1810. 

V. Elizabeth, b. 5 Sept., 17S2; d. 7 Dec, 18.53; in. (int.) 1 
May, 1799, Cyrus Baldwin, d. 23 June, 1854. 
One child, d. 28 May, 1815. 

vi. Mercy, b. 8 July, 1784; d. unm. 18 Oct., 1811. 

vii. William, b. 15 Feb., 1787; d. unm. 15 Oct., 1827. 

viii. Charles, b. 5 Sept., 1789; d. 1 April, 1794. 

ix, Frederick, b. 2 July, 1793; d. unm. Dec, 1859. He was 
appointed midsiiipman in the U. S. Navy 18 June, 1812; 
lieutenant, 28 Mar., 1820; commander, 8 Mar., 1841; and 
was retired 13 Sept., 1855, being of the legal age of (i2 
j'ears. He was stationed six years in the IMediterranean, and 
for three years was at Lima, Peru. He was buried in the 
"Garrison House" burial ground, near the Dracutt Xavy 
Yard, among his ancestors. 

Bradley Vakntjm was named by liis niolher, Aljiali 
(Mitchell) Vaniiim, in honor of her family name of Bradle}-, 
as her sister Hannah, who married her hnsband's brother 
Samuel, had so named two of her children, lie was like all 
his kinship of his generation, a patriot in the Kevolutionaiy 
cause. He was a minute-man iu Capt. Peter Cobiirn's Com- 
})any, and marched to Lexington April 19, 1775 (Lexington 
Alarm Rolls, vol. xii, p. 25). He was al^^o in Capt. Joseph 
Bradley Yarnum's Company, and marched to reinforce the 
Northern ai-my in October, 1778, and was present at the sur- 
render of Gen. Burgoyne (Massachusetts ]Military Kecoi'ds, 
vol. xliv). He was a Dracutt farmer. His will, filed at East 
Cambridge Probate Kecords, gives his wife " one-third part of 
my Real Estate during her natural life," and also, " for her own 
disposal, two cows, five sheep, one swine, all my household 
furniture, and the use of a horse to ride at all times when she 
shall choose to ride abroad, to be furnished by my son Joseph 
liutterfield Varnum." To his daughter Rachel Howard he 
gives "$1, in full with what I have already given her." To 


his daughter Elizabeth Baldwin he gives "6 sheep and a brass 
kettle worth $10." To his son Bradley |600. To his daugh- 
ters Abiah and Mercy $250 each providing also that they shall 
have " liberty to make my present dwelling house their home, 
so long as they remain single." To his minor sons, William 
and Frederick, he gives " $200. each when they shall reach 
twenty-one years of age, and to have an ojDportunity of attend- 
ing the Town school, at the expense of my Estate." "My will 
is that my said sons William and Frederick shall be put out to 
learn such trades as they shall choose as they respectively ar- 
rive at the age of 15 years." 

His son, Joseph Butterfield Yarnum, is left the balance of 
his real and personal estate, and made his sole executor. 

The witnesses to this will are Joseph Yarnum, Joseph Brad- 
ley and Joseph Bradley Yarnum. 

" 12 l^ov., 1799, Joseph Butterfield Yarnum was appointed 
guardian of Abiah & Mercy Yarnum; also of William & 
Frederick Yarnum, minors under 11 years of age, children of 
Bradley Yarnum, yeoman of Dracutt " (East Cambridge Pro- 
bate Kecords). 

He was buried in the family range in the Garrison House 
burial ground. 

105. Joseph Yakxtivi, Jr.* (Joseph,* Joseph,^ Samuel,'' 
George'), born 1 May, 1752; died 23 Sept., 1793; married 12 
Oct., 1775, Mary, daughter of Samuel and Mary (Bradstreet) 
Coburn of Dracutt, born 1 June, 1751, died 14 Feb., 1796. 
Eight children: 

i. Mary Bradstreet,' b. TS June, 1776; d. 23 Oct., 1778. 
115. ii. Joseph 3d, b. 17 Mar., 1778; m. Ruth Moody Johnson, 
iii. Mary Bradstreet, b. 10 Dec, 1779; d. 17 Sept., 1881. 
iv. Asa, b. 26 July, 1781 ; d. 27 Oct., 1805. 
V. Abi, b. 23 Apr., 1783 ; d. 25 July, 1864; m. 17 Oct., 1803, 
William Johnson of Nottingham West? 

sajiuel: fifth generation. 139 

Two children (Johnson) : 

Anna Moody, b. 23 Dec, 1804; m. 6 Dec, 1826, Abel 

Gage of Pelham, N. H. 
Mary Ann, b. 27 June, 1808; d. 29 Sept., 1871; m. 
26 Xov., 1829, WilHam Livingston of Lowell, Mass. 

116. vi. Samuel, b. 17 Jan., 1787 ; m. Sarah Jackman. 

vii. Silas, b. 21 Sept., 1790; d. at Wilmington, N. C, 18 Sept., 

viii. Asenath, b. 12 Aug., 1793; d. 2 Oct., 1818; m. (int.) 7 

Apr., 1812, a James Ferguson of Pelham, N. H. 

Joseph Yaksxtm, Jr., lived in Dracutt and was a farmer. 
He died at the early age of 41 years. He was not a strong 
man physically and therefore does not appear among the 
Minute-men of the town. The town records state "March 16 
1777 Joseph Varnum Jr & wife were taken into the church this 

106. Sa^itel Varxuini' (Samuel, Jr.* Joseph,^ Samuel^ 
George'), born 17 Feb., 1716-7; died Jan., 1828; married Mary 
Parker, born 1719. 
Four children: 

i. Rachel," b. 11 Feb., 1789; d. 1 July, 1863: m. in 1808, 
Charles Doe of Vassalboro', Kennebec Co., Me., b. 7 April, 
1787, d. 20 ,Tuly, 1873. 
Ten children (Doe) : 

Otis, b. 19 June, 1809; d. 22 Sept., 1882. 
Charles, b. 11 Sept,, 1811 ; d. at sea. 
Harrison, b. 12 Nov., 1813; d. 24 Aug., 1816 ; m. (1) 
21 June, 1837, Lydia Annllarriman of Windsor, Me. ; 
m. (2) 31 Mar., 1847, Ann M. Jackson of China, Me. 
Amos W., b. 12 Mar., 1816 ; d. in childhood. 
Mary, b. 12 Apr., 1818; d. 26 Sept., 1894; m. 1 June, 

1845, Calvin Page of Boston, Mass. 
Cjrene, b. 11 June, 1821; d, 6 Jan., 1900 ; m. (1) 


I June, 1845, Samuel Gray of Beverly, Mass. ; m. (2) 

II May, 1851, Elbridge G. Haskell of China, Me. 

Sarah Jane, b. 4 Jan., 1824; d. in childhood. 

Stephen, b. 24 May, 182G ; d. 1 Aug., 1889 ; m. Fran- 
ces E. Martin of Boston. 

William, b. 22 Nov., 1829; living, 
Leonard, b. 18 Jan., 1833; d. 1837. 

ii. Abigail, b. 3 May, 1791 ; m. Abel Dinsmore of Norridgevrock, 

iii. Mary Parker, b. 10 July, 1793 ; m. Charles Winslow of Vas- 

salboro', Me. 
iv. Samuel, b. 4 Mar., 1795. 

SA3IUEL Varnum, Jr., was born in Dracutt, on land pur- 
chased by his grandfather, in 1712, of Samuel Prime, and deeded 
to his father Samuel in 1737. 

In April, 1770, for a deed of gift of 170 acres of land, " he 
relinquished for himself and his heirs all claim against my said 
father's estate Avhile he is living or after his decease." In 1771, 
he reconveyed the same land back to his father for 100£' (East 
Cambridge records, vols. 70, p. 455, and 74, p. 149). 

He was a private in his brother's comjiany, Captain Joseph 
Bradley Varnum, Colonel Simeon Spaulding's regiment, and 
enlisted out of said company with many other Dracutt men for 
three years service in the Continental army (Massachusetts 
Enlistment Rolls, vol. liv., p. 47). He joined Captain John S. 
Dexter's company, Col. Archibald Crary's regiment of the 9th 
Continental Infantry. This was the i-egiment formerly com- 
manded by his brother, afterwards Brigadier-General James 
Mitchell Varnum. It was rriade up of and commanded by 
Rhode Island men essentially, and was in the battles on Long 
Island, King's Bridge and Harlem Heights. 

After the termination of his enlistment, he left Dracutt and 
went to the Kennebec Country in Maine to settle. The histoi-ian 


of Clinton, Maine, says "Previous to 1790 Samuel Varnum 
settled on land occujiied by Charles Kowe at the ferry." The 
historian of Canaan says "in 179G Samuel Varnum, among 
others named, are i-elcased from the support of the ministry 
of Mr. Calef, pi-ovided they give satisftictory evidence to the 
Selectmen that they have aided in the support of the Baptist 
denomination." In June, 1799, he is named as one of the in- 
corporators of a religious society in said town. He is also men- 
tioned in said history as having paid a poll tax of lis. lid. 
This would seem to indicate him as a permanent resident of 

In the later years of his life he drew a pension under the Act 
of 11 April, 1818, at the rate of $96 per annum as a Kevo- 
lutionary soldier, and according to papers in the State Archives 
at Augusta, Maine, he had received up to the time of his 
decease, in Jan., 1828, when he was 81 years of age, a sum 
total of $933.06. His wife was living in 1820, when she was 
71 years of age. 

107. James Mitchell Varxum^ (Scmuel,* Joseph;' 
Samuel,'' George'), born 17 Dec, 1748; died 10 Jan., 1789; 
married " Warren, E. I., 2 Feb., 1770, These may Certify whom 
it concerns, that on the date hereof, James Mitchell Varnum 
& Martha Child were married, according to the Direction of the 
Law of this Colony I'espeeting marriage, by James Manning, 
Pastor of the Baptist Church of said Town." "Martha, The 
Daughter of Cromel Child, and Robe, his wife, was born De- 
cember, ye 5th day, A.D. 1748." (Warren, R. I., Town 

Martha (Cromel) Child died at Bristol, R. I., 10 Oct., 1837. 
No issue. 



By James Mitchell Varnum.^ 

James Mitchell Yaexum, eldest son of Major Samuel 
Vaninm, was born at Dracutt, Mass., on December 17th, 1748. 
After an academical education he entered Harvard College as 
a Freshman at the age of 16 years and 7 months, in the class 
of 17G9, but did not continue there until graduation. There 
is no official record at the University as to the reason for his 
leaving Harvard, but inasmuch as in Quincy's history of Har- 
vard College there is mention of disturbances amongst the 
students in April, 1768, in consequence of which some were 
rusticated and others expelled, it is considered probable that 
Varnum, who had the reijutation of being rather " wild " at 
college, may have been one of the number. 

He taught school in his native town of Dracutt in 1767, 
and on May 23d, 1768, entered Rhode Island College (now 
Brown University), from which institution he graduated with 
honors in 1769, in the fii-st class to graduate from that 
college. At the "commencement" day celebration, which was 
held in the then new Baptist meeting-house at Warren, on 
September 7th, 1769, Varnum took a prominent place in the 
exercises, taking part in " a Syllogistic Disputation in Latin," 
and also being one of two students engaged in a " Forensic 
Dispute '' entitled " The Americans in their present circum- 
stances cannot consistent with good policy affect to become an 
independent state." 

Mr. Varnum " ingeniously defended the proposition by co- 
gent arguments handsomely dressed, though he was subtly, but 
delicately, opposed by Mr. William Williams, both of whom 
spoke with emphasis and propriety." Full copies of their 

Gen. James Mitchell Varnum 







arguments may be found in Dr. Guild's account of the com- 
mencement.* As a sign of the times it may be mentioned that 
at this commencement "not only the candidates, but even the 
President, were dressed in American manufactures." f 

In 17G9, Mr. Yarnum, after leaving college, again taught 
school for a time at Dracutt, but even at this early date seems 
to have decided to make his future home in Rhode Island, for 
soon thereafter he cntei-ed the office of the Honorable Oliver 
Arnold, Attorney General of the colony, with whom he was a 
student at law until the latter's decease in October, 1770. 

It is probable, however, that young Yarnum's decision to 
settle in Rhode Island was chiefly due to the fact that during 
his student life at Warren he had fallen in love with a fair 
daughter of that colony, whom he married on February 2d, 
1770. Her name was Martha (usually known as Patty) Child, 
the eldestdaughter of the Honorable Cromel Child of Warren, 
a member of the Rhode Island General Assembly, and one of a 
family of considerable, and even notable, distinction in those 

One of her sisters married Hon. Benjamin Bourne, after- 
wards Member of Congress and United States District and 
Circuit Judge, and another Dr. Peter Turner, a distinguished 
surgeon in the Continental Army, and a prominent citizen of 
Rhode Island. 

It may be here stated that Mr. Yarnum's marriage proved to 
be a most happy one, he being re])resented by the chroniclers 
of that period as an "excellent and affectionate husband," and 
his consort as a "high-minded lady, and one of the most 
cheerful, sociable, and best of wives." Mrs. Yarnum survived 
her husband 48 years, and died at Bristol, R. I., on October 
10th, 1837, without issue, at the advanced age of 88 j'cars. 

• '• The First Commencement of llhode Island College," by R. A. Guild, Collection R. I. 
Historical Society, vol. 7. Providence. 1885. 

t Manning and Brown University, by R. A. Guild. Gould & Lincoln, Boston, 1864. 


In 1771, Mr. Yarnum was admitted to the Bar, and soon 
after settled in East Greenwich, R. I., where his decided ability 
early acquired for him an extensive practice, and he travelled 
the circuit of the colony, reaping in an unusual degree for one 
so young the honors and pecuniary rewards of his profession. 
Mr. Wilkins Updyke, in his " Memoirs of the Rhode Island 
Bar," in referring to Mr. Varnum at this period of his life, 
says: " lie was deeply attached to mathematical science, and 
delighted in its pursuit; his whole life was an evidence that he 
was naturally a mathematician; his habits were those of intense 
study and boisterous relaxation. lie was fond of exhibiting his 
skill in gymnastics, and ever ready to exercise in that ancient 
art with any one who would engage with him, noble or ignoble. 
Strong and active in frame, and ardently attached to such ex- 
ercises, he gave his inclination for such sports the fullest range 
to a late period in his life." In another portion of his biography 
of General Varnum, and referring genei-ally to his character, 
Mr. Updyke says: "Varnum was periodically an intense stu- 
dent, and would be secluded for weeks. He possessed the rare 
power of great mental abstraction and philosophic ratiocination. 
He was master of his cases, and all the facts were well arranged 
and digested for trial. Varnum told a friend that he studied 
his cases in bed, and often had his books brought to him. 
This is the solution of the mystery which some thought was 
intuition, of instantly rising in court and arguing his cause, to 
public surjirise and admiration, without any apparent previous 
preparation or consultation. He was a great admirer of Vattel 
and Montesqueiu; the latter he woidd almost repeat. He de- 
lighted in, and cultivated his taste for, the poets. Shakespeare, 
Young, Pope, and Addison he would recite with great readi- 
ness, and when a novel came into his hands his meals were 
suspended until it was finished " 

It was about this time, on August 15th, 1773, that Mr. Var- 


num purchased for £18. the h\nd at East Greenwich upon 
■\vhicli he commenced the erection of tlie colonial mansion, to 
which reference will hereafter be made. Owing, however, to 
the troubled condition of the country, and the war whicli soon 
followed, in whicli Mi-, ^"al•nnnl took such an interested and 
active part, his building operations were interrupted, and the 
house was not completed and occupied until some four or five 
years thereafter. 

Mr. Yarnum, very early in life, took an intense and active 
interest in military affairs, especially in view of the discontent 
in the colonies with the rule of Great Bi-itain, and his firm con- 
viction that sooner or later war must ensue. He made a care- 
ful study not only of military tactics, but also of the art and 
science of war, which afterwaids stood him in good stead. 

In October, 177-1, he became a charter member and the com- 
mander, with the rank of Colonel, of the Kentish Guards, a 
uniformed militia company of infantry in East Greenwich, then 
chartered by the Rhode Island General Assembly under the 
style of the " Fii-st Independent Company of the County of 
Kent," and whicli subsequently gave 32 conimissioned officers 
to the army of the American Revolution, amongst them Gen. 
Nathaniel Greene, Gen. Yarnum, Col. Chi'istopher Greene, 
Col. Crary and Maj. Whitmarsh. 

It was about this time, and in connection with the Kentish 
Guards, that there began that intimacy and devoted friend.-hip 
that existed between Nathaniel Greene and James M. Yarnum 
until they were parted by the death of the latter. 

Mr. George Washington Greene, in his life of Maj.-Gen. 
Greene, after alluding to Greene's deep interest in the Kentish 
Guards, says: — 

"Amongst tlie first officers was James M. Vanium, a man of exalted 
talents,' whom he ' loved and esteemed,' wlio was to take an honorable 
place in the civil and military Jiistory of the Revolution. 


Nathaniel Greene was only a private in the company, but subsequently 
became a candidate for a lieutenancy, a candidature vvliich met with con- 
siderable opposition. 

Greene, it seems, had had a trouble with one of his knees, which gave 
a slight limp to his gait, and in the eyes of some of the village and com- 
pany critics, this limp, although slight, was a serious blemish, unfitting 
him not merely for an officer, but even for a private. 

Greene was thunderstruck at this opposition, and took it sorely to heart. 
His friends were indignant. Varnum threatened to withdraw his name, 
and the loss of Varnum's fine person and popular eloquence would have 
been a serious blow to the half-organized company." * 

How this matter was finally settled we know not, but doubt- 
less Greene withdrew his candidacy for lieutenant, and per- 
suaded his friends to agree to it, for he remained a jM-ivate in 
the company until about two years later, when, over the heads 
of all his critics, he was promoted to a Bi-igadier-Generalcy 
by his fellow-members of the Rhode Island Legislature, an 
appointment which his subsequent brilliant career fully justified. 

An interesting letter written by Greene to his friend and 
commander, Yarnum, at the time of the above-mentioned trou- 
ble, is still extant,t and is worthy of preservation in this volume, 
although it has already been printed in full in the life of Gen. 
Greene, above referred to. 

It is addressed to James M. Yarnum, Esq., East Greenwich, 
and was pi'obably written in the autumn of 1774, or early in 
1775, and reads as follows: — 


Coventry, Monday, 2 o'clock, p. m. 
Dear Sir : — 

As I am ambitious of maintaining a place in your esteem, 
and I cannot hope to do it, if I discover in my actions a little mind and a 
mean spirit I think in justice to myself I ought to acquaint you with the 
particulars of the subject upon which we conversed to-day — I was informed 

* G. W. Greene's " History of General Greene," vol. 1, page 60. 

t Original letter is in the possession of James M. Varnum of New York. 


the gentlemen of East Greenwich said I was a blemish to the company — 
I confess it is the first stroke of mortification that I ever felt from being 
considered cither in private or publick life a blemish fo those with whom 
I associated — hitherto I have always had the happiness to find myself re- 
spected in society in general, and my friendship courted by as respectable 
characters as any in the Government — pleased with these thoughts, and 
anxious to promote the good of my country — and ambitious of increasing 
the consequence of East Greenwich — I liave exerted myself to form a mili- 
tary company there — but little did I think that the Gentlemen considered 
me in the light of an obtruder — my heart is too susceptible of pride, and 
my sentiments too delicate to wish a connexion where I am considered in 
an inferior point of light — I have always made it my study to promote the 
interest of Greenwich and to cultivate the good opinion of its iniiabitants, 
that the severity of speech and the union of sentiment, coming from per- 
sons so unexpected — might wound the pride of my heart deeper than the 
force of the observation nierited — God knows when I first entered this 
company I had not in contemplation any kind of office, but was fully de- 
termined not to accept any, but GrefF and others have been endeavouring 
to obtain my consent for some weeks past — I never expected that being a 
member of that company would give me any more consequence in life, 
either as private soldier or commissioned officer — I thought the cause of 
Liberty was in danger, and as it was attackt by a military force, it was 
necessary to cultivate a military spirit amongst the People, that should 
tyranny endeavor to make any further advances we might be prepared to 
check it in its first sallies. I considered with myself that if we never 
should be wanted in that character, it would form a pretty little society in 
our meetings, wliere we might relax ourselves a few hours from the various 
occupations of life — and return to our business again with move activity 
and spirit — I did not want to add any new consequence to myself from 
the distinction of that company — if I had been aml)itiou8 of promotion in 
a puljlick character — you yourself can witness for me I have had it in my 
power — but I always preferred the pleasures of [)rivate society to tiiose 
of publick distinction — If 1 conceive aright of the force of the olijection 
of the gentlemen of the town it was not as an officer, but as a soldier, for 
that my halting was a blemish to the rest — I confess it is my misfortune 
to limp a little, but I did not conceive it to be so great, but we are not 
apt to discover our own defects. I feel the less mortified at it as it's 


natural and not a stain or defection, tliat resulted from my actions — I have 
pleased myself with the thoughts of serving under you, but as it is the 
general opinion that 1 am unfit for such an undertaking I shall desist — I 
feel not the less inclination to promote the good of the Company because 
I am not to be one of its members — I will do any thing that's in my power 
to procure the Charter, I will be at my proportion of tiie expense until the 
company is formed and completly equipt — Let me entreat you. Sir, if you 
have any regard for me, not to forsake the company at this crititical sea- 
son for I fear the consequences — if you mean to oblige me by it, I assure 
you it will not, I would not have the company break and disband for fifty 
Dollars — it would be a disgrace upon the county and upon the town in 
particular. I feel more mortification than resentment — but I think it would 
have manifested a more generous temper to have given me their opinions 
in private than to make proclamation of it in publick as a capital objection, 
for nobody loves to be the subject of ridicule however true the cause — I 
pur[>ose to attend to-morrow if my business will permit — and as Mr. 
Greene is waiting will add no more only that I am with great truth 

Your sincere friend, 

Natiianael Gkeene. 

The prominent part taken by Yarnum in the Colonial con- 
troversy inspired him with an ambition to enter the military 
service of his country, and when the news of the battle of Lex- 
ington reached East Greenwich, in 1775, Col. Yarnum as- 
sembled the Kentish Guards, and within three hours, well 
uniformed, armed and equipped, they were on the march to 
Providence, and thence to Pawtucket, where they learned that 
the enemy had retired to Boston, and that their services were 
no longer required. The next week the General Assembly of 
Rhode Island authorized the raising of a brigade of three 
regiments of infantry, under Nathaniel Greene, then a mem- 
ber of the Assembl}^ as Brigadier-General, and Yarnum was 
selected as Colonel of the regiment to be raised in the counties 
of Kent and Kings, and on May 8th, 1775, he was commis- 
sioned by the Provincial General Assembly as Colonel of the 


1st Regiment Rhode Island Infantry in llie Brigade of Oliscr- 
vation. After the 5th of August of that year the regiment 
was known as the 12th Continental Foot, and during the year 
177G ofKcially designated the 9th Continental Foot. When 
this first change in name took place the officers received com- 
missions from the President of Congress, when Washington 
was aj)])ointed commander-in-chief, and their commands were 
then styled Continental troops. 

On the 8th of June, 1775, Col. Yarnum arrived with his 
regiment at Roxbury, and reported to Brig.-Gen. Greene. 
Here it was under fire during the shelling of that place on the 
17th of June, 1775, and also at Plowed Hill on August 2Gth. 
During the cannonade at the last-named place Adjt. Mumford 
and another member of the regiment had their heads shot oflF. 

On the 23d July, the Rhode Island Brigade removed to 
Prospect Hill. Col. Varnum's regiment continued at the siege 
of Boston until the town was evacuated by the enemy, 17th 
of March, 177G. Meanwhile the terms of service of most of the 
unlisted men had expired in December, but they continued on 
duty until the 1st of January, 1776, and then almost all re- 
enlisted for another year. 

Marching from Boston on the 1st of April, 1776, the regi- 
ment Avent into temporary quai'ters at Providence, and then 
proceeded via Norwich to New London, where it embarked in 
transports for New York Cit}^, and arrived there on the 17th 
of April. 

Pursuant to general orders from Ai-my Headquarters, New 
York, 30th April, 1776, the 1st and 2nd Rhode Island Conti- 
nental Infantry crossed the East River to Brooklyn on the 3rd 
of May and began to fortify the heights. 

On the 1st of June, pursuant to Brig.-Gen. Nathaniel 
Greene's ordei\s of that date from Brooklyn Heights, five com- 
panies of Col. Yarnum's regiment were stationed upon the right 


ill Fort Box, and the other three between that work and Fort 

On the 9th of June, Brig-.-Gen. Greene directed the 1st and 
2nd Rhode Island and Col. Moses Little's 12th regiment Con- 
tinental Foot (8lh Mass. Inlantry) of his brigade to exercise 
together four days in each week. 

On the 17th of June, Brig.-Gen. Greene assigned six com- 
panies of Col. Yarnum's regiment to garrison Fort Box, which 
was near the line of the present Pacific Street, a short distance 
above Bond Sti-eet, Brooklyn, and tAVo companies to the 
"Oblong" redoubt, which was on a piece of rising ground at 
the corner of the present De Kalb and Hudson Avenues, 

On the 8th of July, the same genei-al officer ordered the 1st 
Rhode Island, Col. Yarnum, to go and garrison Fort Defiance, 
at Red Hook, Brooklyn, which in a communication to Gen. 
"Washington Irom Headquarters, Brooklj^n Heights, 5th July, 
he said he regarded as "a post of vast importance." 

Here the regiment remained during the battle of Long 
Island, on the extreme right flank of Maj.-Gen. Israel Put- 
nam's forces, engaged with the allied British and Hessian 
forces, and nearest to the enemy's ships. 

On the oOth of August, the 1st and 2nd Rhode Island hav- 
ing evacuated the lines, re-crossed the East River to the City 
of New York early in the morning. 

In the action at Harlem Heights, the regiment was an active 
participant under its Lieut. -Col. (Archibald Crary), Col. Yar- 
num being at the time on the sick report. 

Soon afterward the regiment crossed the Hudson at Fort 
Lee, and was there on the '23d of September with the remain- 
der of the brigade (Nixon's, late Greene's), which included 
the 2nd Rhode Island. From thence, on the IStli of October, 
pursuant to Brig.-Gen. John Nixon's orders of that date and 


place, which he had issued in comph'ance with Maj.-Gen. 
Greene's instructions, the brigade immediately moved over the 
ferry to Fort Washington, and on the 16th of October was at 
East Chester, from whence, on that date, Col. Varnum's regi- 
ment was ordei'ed to march toward Throg's Xeck, at the en- 
trance of Long Island Sound, where the British had landed on 
the 12th, and to retard their advance. Taking post at the Avest 
end of the causeway from Throg's Neck, with a detachment at 
Westchester Mil), on the causeway where the bridge planks 
had been removed, the 1st Rhode Island remained here until 
the 18th, and then moved to Valentine's Hill. 

Two days later. Col. Varnum was with his regiment at the 
battle of AVhite Plains, and on the 1st of November in camp at 
North Castle. On the 22nd of November, the regiment was 
quartered near Phillipsburg, and crossed the Hudson with the 
brigade on the 2nd of December, and was at Haverstraw on the 
4th of December. 

As the terms of service of the several Rhode Island Conti- 
nental regiments were drawing to a close, he here left his regi- 
ment, and was sent by his Excellency, the commander-in-chief, 
to Rhode Island, to hasten, by his influence and presence, the 
recruitment of the army. 

On the 12th of October preceding, Gen. Washington, from 
Ai-my Headquarters, Harlem Heights, had specially recom- 
mended him for retention in the army on its proposed re-ar- 
vangement " for the war." 

He had been at home but a few days when the Rhode Island 
General Assembly appointed him on the 12th of December, 
1776, Brigadier-General of the State Militia, and also of the 
Rhode Island State Brigade on the Continental Establishment. 
He relinquished his regimental commission on acceptance of this 
last commission, and was on diity successively at Tiverton 8th, 
23rd Januaiy, and 11th to 17th March, 1777, Providence 25th 


January, Warren 12th March, South Kingston 20th April, 
and Exeter 21th May, 1777. He was apiDointed Brigadier- 
Greneral of the Continental Army 21st of February, 1777, and 
notified thereof by Gen. Washington in complimentary terms 
from Army Headquarters. Morristown, N. J., 3rd of March, 
1777. Gen. Washington's letter contains ample evidence that 
his military record and bearing had met with the full approba- 
tion of the distinguished commander-in-chief. This new ap- 
pointment vacated that under which lie was then acting, and 
the Rhode Island General Assembly at the March session, 1777, 
passed a resolution on the subject "in grateful remembrance 
of his services." 

Using his pei'sonal influence, which was great, to hasten re- 
enlistment and the recruitment of the 1st and 2nd Rhode 
Island Continentals, after their return in February from Mor- 
ristown, N. J., he was enabled on the 8th of April to send for- 
Avai'd to that place to join the " main " army a detachment from 
each, under Lieut. -Col. Jeremiah Olney. Under Gen. Wash- 
ington's instructions from Army Headquarters at the last- 
named place, of the 11th of Maj^, the two regiments when they 
did leave Rhode Island were directed to march to Peekskill, in 
the Middle Department, then under Maj.-Gen. Israel Putnam. 
They arrived there on or about the 23rd of May, and were at 
first quartered in Peekskill. Brig.-Gen. Varnum personally 
arrived about the 1st of June. On the 12th of June, Gen. 
Washington, in consequence of a movement of the enemy, di- 
rected from Army Headquarters, Middlebrook, ISIaj.-Gen. Put- 
nam to forward to that place a portion of his forces. This 
detachment included Yajnum's Brigade. While with the 
" main army " his brigade, on the 22nd of June, 1777, formed 
part of the forces detached under Maj.-Gen. Nathaniel Greene 
to make a demonstration against the enemy in New Brunswick. 
In this successful movement against Sir William Howe, Var- 


niim's Brigade marched down on the west side of the Raritan 
and followed the retreating- enemy several miles toward Amboy. 
On the 1st of Jnly, the brigade was ordered back by his Ex- 
cellency, the commander-in-chief, and on the 2nd of July 
marched from Middlebrook. 

The 1st Rhode Island was then sent to Maj.-Gen. Putnam to 
garrison Fort Montgomery. 

On the 20th of August, pursuant to the latter's orders from 
Dei)artment Headquaiters, Peekskill, Brig.-Gen. Yarnum left 
that place on special service with a detachment to White 
Plains, from whence the 2nd Rhode Island went nearly to 
King's Bridge, in the " neiitral ground " of Westchester 

The expedition was successful, and incidentally captured two 
subalterns and several enlisted men of the enemy. 
It returned to Peekskill on the 26th. 

On the 23d September, General Washington, from Army 
Headquarters in camp near Pottsgrove, Pa., instructed Maj.- 
Gcn. I'utnam to send a certain detachment of troops to him 
witliout delay, via Morristown. 

Accordingly the 4th Regt. Conn. Cont'l Inf'y (Col. John 
Durkee) and the 8th Regt. Conn. Conti Inf'y (Col. John 
Ciiandler) wei'e added to Brig.-Gen. Varnum's bi-igade, and it 
again crossed the Hudson River. It arrived at Caryell's Ferry 
on the Delaware on the 7th October, and here he Avas directed 
to halt, and by orders of the 7th October to detach the 1st and 
2d Rhode Island to Fort Mercer. Soon afterwards, he moved 
to Woodbury, N. J., wdiere Brigade Headquarters were estab- 

On the 1st Nov., 1777, Gen. Washington, from Army Head- 
quarters Whitemarsh, directed him to take supervision of Fort 
Mercer, Red Bank, and of Fort ]\Iilllin, Mud Island, and relieve 
Lt.-Col. Samuel Smith, 4th Maryland Cont'l Inf'y, the com- 


mandment of Fort Mifflin, who had requested to be relieved on 
the 18th October. 

However, in prospect of an attack, Lt.-Col. Smith was con- 
tinued in command, and exercised it on the 10 Nov. when the 
firing was resumed, until the afternoon of the 11th, when he 
was severely wounded in the arm and loft the fort. Brig. -Gen. 
Varnum, then at Fort Mercer, immediately detailed Lieut.-Col. 
Giles Russell, 8tli Conn., who went over and assumed command, 
and I'elieved part of the ganison by a detachment from his own, 
the 4th Conn. (Col. John Durkee's). 

On the 12th, Lieut.-Col. Russell, ill and exhausted by fatigue, 
asked to be relieved, and while Brig.-Gen. Varnum was con- 
sidering what field officer to detail to the hazardous duty, Maj. 
Simeon Thayer, 2d Rhode Island, volunteered, and Avent over 
and relieved Lieut.-Col. Russell and the remainder of Lieut.- 
Col. Smith's men with a detachment of Rhode Islanders. 

As the land defences of the Delaware had been entrusted by 
Gen. Washington to Brig.-Gen. Varnum, the anxiety of the 
latter to fulfil his whole duty with the inadequate force under 
him was extreme. 

During the bombardment of Fort Mifflin and its heroic de- 
fence on the loth Nov., 1777, he reported to Gen. Washington 
at 6 P.M., as follows: " We have lost a great many men to-day j 
a great many officers are killed and wounded. My fine com- 
l^any of artillery is almost destroyed. We shall be obliged to 
evaciiate the fort this night." 

After the two forts were evacuated he marched his brigade, 
20th November, to Mount Holly and joined Maj.-Gen. Greene's 
division there a few days later. 

Having crossed the Delaware, his brigade joined the main 
army at Whitemarsh about the 29th Nov., and was in the 
operations in that vicinity against Sir William Howe's army, 
5th-8th December, 


Proceeding with his brigade to Valley Forge on the 19th 
Dec., it there erected huts and went into winter quarters." 
The brigade of General Varnum was stationed on a hill Avhei-e 
a star redoubt was erected, whence an extensive view of both 
sides of the Schuylkill liiver could be secured, and so near the 
steam as to be able to employ the artillery to check any attempt 
of the enemy to cross over near the place, but their use for that 
purpose Avas never required. The redoubt was about Li miles 
from Washington's headquarters; and just within the lines and 
a short distance beyond were the headquarters of General 
Yarnum, at the residence of David Stevens, the next farm 
house below that occupied by Washington. This house is still 
standing, and has recently been described, as follows: "The 
house is of stone with a long porch facing the road, and is quite 
remarkable for the thickness of the western wall — about 12 
feet. The ceilings are low, and there is a general appeai'ance 
of comfort surrounding it. The main room has still the large 
old open fire place. It is situate close to the River road, and 
about three hundred feet from the ruins of the Star Eedoubt, 
which Avas the strongest of the works at A^alley Forge, com- 
manding the road and the river for miles, and was doubtless 
the key to the situation."! 

The trials, sufferings and privations of the Continental Army 
at Yalley Forge are too Avell knoAvn to all students of history 
to require any extended allusion thereto, and the same may be 
said as to the bitter attacks and cabals against General Wash- 
ington at this time, but the following extracts from letters of 
General Yarnum may be of interest. On December 22d, 1777, 
he wrote to General Washington, as follows: 

• History of Valley Forge, by Henry AVoodraan (collection of Penn. Hist. Society). Also 
John F. AVatrous' memo, in same collection. 

t J. A'. P. Turner, Esq., of Philadelphia, in Xewport Mercury, Dec. 21st, 189-5 ; and in 
personal correspondence with the Editors, 1902. 


" According to the saying of Solomon, hunger will break through a stone 
wall. It is tlierefore a very pleasing circumstance to the Division under 
my command that there is probability of their marching. Three days suc- 
cessively have we been destitute of bread. Two days we have been en- 
tirely witliout meat. The men must be supplied or they cannot be com- 
manded. The complaints are too urgent to pass unnoticed. It is with 
pain that I mention this distress. I know that it will make your Excel- 
lency unhappy ; but if you expect the exertion of virtuous principle while 
your troops are deprived of the necessaries of life, your final disappoint- 
ment will be great in proportion to the patience which now astonishes every 
man of human feeling."* 

In a letter to his life long friend, General Nathaniel Greene^ 
dated Valley Forge, Feb. 1st, 1778, he speaks of General 
Washington, as follows: 

"I know the great General in this as in all his other measures, acts from 
goodness of soid and with a view only to the public weal. * * * You 
have often heard me say, and, I assure you, I feel happy in the truth of 
it, that next to God Almighty, and my country, I revere General Wash- 
ington, and nothing fills me with so much indignation as the villany of 
some who dare speak disrespectfully of him." 

On February 16, 1778, General Varnum wrote another letter 
from camp to General Greene, as follows: 

" The situation of the camp is such that in all human probability the 
army must soon dissolve. JMany of the troops are destitute of meat and 
are several days in aiTcar. The horses are dying for want of forage. The 
country in the vicinity of the camp is exhausted. * * * * ]\Iy freedom 
upon this occasion may be offensive ; if so I should be unhappy, but duty 
compels me to speak without reserve."! 

General Varnum was the first person in the country to ad- 
vocate the enlistment of negroes as soldiers, and thus to reco^- 

• Ford's ^\'ashington, vol. 6, page 254. 
t Ford's Washmgton, vol. 6, page 381. 


iiize courage " behind a thatch of wool." On January 2d, 1778, 
in view of the difficulty of obtaining sufficient troops for the 
Continental Ai-my, he suggested to General Washington the 
propriety of raising a battalion of negroes to make up the pro- 
portion of Rhode Island in the army. Washington submitted 
this suggestion to the executive of Khode Island without ap- 
proval or disapproval. The Khode Island Legislature, how- 
evei', jM-omptly passed an act authorizing the enlistment in two 
battalions of negroes and Indians; every slave enlisting to re- 
ceive his freedom, and his owner to be paid by the State an 
amount not exceeding £125. x\t least one battalion was suc- 
cessfully raised, and did excellent service at the battle of Rhode 

General \'arnura seems to have been one of the most aggres- 
sive and strenuous of the general officers of the army in pre- 
senting, not only to the Commandei-in-Chief, but also to the 
State of Rhode Island and to Congress, the sufferings and 
needs of the Continental troops at Valley Forge, and in de- 
manding some immediate relief for them, and doubtless this 
aggix'ssiveness and insistence led him naturally to incur the 
hostility of some active members of the general government, 
for on ^lay 2:)d, 1778, Govcrneur Morris, then a member of 
Congress from New York, writes to Washington concerning 
Varnum that his " temper and manners are by no means calcu- 
lated to ti'ach Patience, Discipline and Subordination." f 

Dr. William Shaw Bowen says of Varnum : 

" His talents for the conduct of business affairs were very great, and his 
manners were so enpfajring that Varnum was called on by Wasiiington to 
conduct delicate negotiations for the Continental as well as for the State 
Government. AVashington placed a high estimate on him." 

"The solemn visage of tlie fatlier of his country must have relaxed when 

* Ford's Washington, vol. 6, page 347. 
t Ford's Washington, Vol. 7, p. 30. 


he referred to him as ' the light of the camp ' during the dreadful winter 
at Valley Forge."* 

Pui'siiaiit to General Washington's orders dated Army Head- 
quarters Yalley Forge, 7th May, 1778, he was directed under 
the resohition of Congress of the 3d February preceding, to 
administer the oath of office to the officers of his own and Brig.- 
Genl. Jedediah Huntington's brigade of Connecticut Continen- 
tal Infiintry. 

On the 4th Jklarch, 4th, 23d, and 29th April, 17th, 2Gth and 
28th of Ma}^ and 4th June, he was Brigadier-General of the 
day to the " Main " Army at Yalle}' Forge. Soon afterward 
and before the evacuation of Philadelphia by the enemy, he 
went on special duty to Khode Island. Here his brigade joined 
him near Providence on the 3d August, 1778, pi-eparatory to 
the campaign before Newport. It now consisted, under Gen- 
eral orders dated Armv lid. Qrs. Wright's Mills, 22d Jul}^, 
1778, of the 2d R. I. Contl. Infantry (Col. Israel Angell), 
Colonels Henry Sherburne's and Saml. B. Webb's additional 
Eegts. Contl. lufy. and the 1st Regt. Canadian Contl. Infy. 
(Col. James Livingston). 

On the 14th August pursuant to Gcnl. Orders of Maj.-Genl. 
John Sullivan dated lid. Qrs. Portsmouth. E.I., he was assigned 
to the command of the right wing of the front line of the Array 
in Rhode Island, and by the same authority was directed to 
command the covering party in the lines at the siege of New- 
port on the 16th. 

In addition to his other duties he was detailed as President 
of a Genera] Court Martial, per Major-General SulHvan's or- 
ders, dated Hd. Qrs. before Newport, 17th Aug., 1778, and 
continued on this duty until the 29th August when the Court 
was dissolved. 

* Providence Journal, March 6th, 1902. [This remark -was made by Washington to Cap- 
tain Samuel Packard of Providence (grandfather of Dr. Bo wen), and frequently repeated by 
Capt. Packard.] 


On the 14th and 31st August he was Brigadier of the Day 
to the Army. 

In the battle of Rhode Island his command bore the princi- 
pal pai-t of the fighting against the forces of Maj.-Genl. Robt. 

In General Orders dated Hd. Qrs. Department of R. I., 
Tiverton, 31st Aug., 1778, his brigade was ordered " to take 
post at Bristol and Warren, divided as he shall think best for 
the defence of those posts." He made his Brigade Hd. Qrs. 
at Warren until 26th Feby., 1779, when he was at East Green- 
wich. Meanwhile Major-General Sullivan, during his own 
absence, by General Orders dated Hd. Qrs. Providence, 27th 
Januaiy, 1779, placed him temporarily in 'command of the De- 
partment of Rhode Island. 

The necessity of attending to his private affairs, and to the 
support and maintenance of his family, compelled him at this 
time much against his will to tender his resignation to Con- 
gress. In a letter to his friend, Genl. Greene, dated 2Gth Feby., 
1779, he says: "The resolution was painful, but hard necessity 
urged it by every cogent motive." He was honorably dis- 
charged from the service "at his own request," 5th March, 

Upon official notification of acceptance of his resignation, 
Maj. General John Sullivan, in Genl. Orders Hd. Qrs. Depart- 
ment of Rhode Island, Providence, 18th March, 1779, said : 

" Brigadier-General Varnum having this day notified the Commander- 
in-Chief that he has transmitted a final resignation of his commission to 
Congress, and that he is under the disagreeable necessity of quitting the 
service of the United States : 

The General esteems it his duty to return his sincere and most cordial 
thanks to Brig.-Genl. Varnum for liis brave, spirited and soldierlike con- 
duct wliile acting under his immediate command in this Department, and 
sincei'cly laments that an officer, who by his conduct, has merited so nuich 
from tlie public, should be under the disagreeable necessity of leavin"- a 


service where his exertions as an officer would have been of essential ad- 
vantage had he been able to continue in the army." 

Apjiointed by the R. I. General Assembly to be Major-Gen- 
eral R. I. Militia, 5th May, 1779, he continued in this office by 
unanimous annual reappointments until the 7th May, 1788, and 
was, from the 2oth July to the 8th Aug., 1780, called into the 
actual service of the United States under Lieut.-Genl. the 
Comte de Rochambeau. On the 26th Oct., 1779, he was ap- 
pointed by the Rhode Island General Assembly Advocate in 
the State Court of Admiralty. 

Upon his resignation from the army General Varnum re- 
turned to his home at East Greenwich, completed the construc- 
tion of his dwelling and resumed the active practice of the law. 

As to this house of General Varnum's, which is still stand- 
ing (1906), and in excellent preservation, although more than 
a centur}" and a quarter old, we have an interesting description 
in an article written by its present owner and occupant, Dr. 
William Shaw Bowen, which was published in the Providence 
Journal of March 6th, 1892, from which we quote as follows: 

" Of the pre-revolutionary mansions there are few better specimens in 
existence than the Varnum place in East Greenwich. The venerable 
edifice has been shielded from the approaches of the iconoclastic ' restorer,' 
and today, in its interior, it is one of the most perfect of the remaining 
instances of colonial architecture the country affords. In its way it is as 
unique as the Braddock house at Alexandria, Va., the Chancellor "Wythe 
mansion at Williamsburg, or the Brandon place on the James River near 
Richmond. Varnum house is not only rich in the perfect details of its 
kind, but it teems with historic interest. Few houses in Rhode Island are 
more replete with associations 'of the last days of her colonial history and 
the early period of independent existence, the hiatus between tlie date of 
the separation from English rule and that of the final union with the 
established States of the American Union. 

Punch-Bow I, 

Hresented to General Varnum by General Lafayetle 

In possession of the Society of the Cincinnati in the State of Rhode Island and 
Providence Plantations 


The present owner cherishes the home of the brilliant and versatile 
Varniini, and takes pride in preserving the old place in its original style. 
The hall, which closely resembles that of the Vernon house, is wainscoted 
on the first and second floors, as arc nearly all of the rooms. The wood- 
work of the parlor is greatly admired by architects. The heavy cornice 
is dcntated and the pediment above the fireplace is peculiarly graceful in 
its effect. The doors have small, oval, fluted brass knobs. All of the 
rooms have open fireplaces witli tile facings. The fireplace of the dining 
room is seven feet in width and constructed of cut granite. The rooms 
are filled with antique black mahogany furniture, mostly of the Georgian 
age. The parlor set was brought from England in the last century." 

In the same article we find a picturesque and attractive ac- 
count of a visit paid by the Marquis de Lafayette and a ])arty 
of French officers in September, 1778, to General Varnum at 
his East Greenwich home. It reads as follows : 

" On a warm afternoon in September, in the year 1778, a small sloop 
rounded 'the rocks,' which jut out into Coweset Bay from the estate now 
occupied as a summer residence by William Stoddard, Esq., of Providence. 
The fresh southerly breeze which prevails a considerable portion of the 
year wafted the craft to Long Point, which limits the little Greenwich 
cove. Then the sloop made a few tacks, and was speedily tied alongside 
the wharf at tiic foot of King Street. The loungers on shore, attracted 
by the new arrival, beheld a gallant spectacle on tiic sloop's deck. There 
was a handsome young man clad in the buff" and blue regimentals of a 
general ofticer in the Continental army. He was of medium height, erect 
and dignified, and his manners were those of one who is in a position to 
command men. \\'itii distinguished courtesy he assisted several unknown 
military gentlemen to the shore. Tiic uniform worn by tiie strangers was 
unfamiliar to the barefooted youths who clustered on the caplog of the 
wharf. It consisted of a green coat faced with red and laced with gold. 
The breeches were of butf cloth. Black silk stockings, a four-cornered 
cocked hat and a large red silk sash were other features of the costume. 
One of the number was clad in the Continental blue and bufl". On him 
the attention of the first mentioned officer were especially bestowed, lie 
was a young man with sharp features and a prominent nose. When the 


shore was reached the first officer in Continental uniform exclaimed : ' My 
dear JNIarqiiis, welcome to East Greenwich and ray home.' 

Tiie speaker was Brigadier-General James Mitchell Varnum, who com- 
manded a brigade at the battle foujjht on Rhode Island on Auoust 29th 
pi'evioiis between the American army under General Sullivan and the 
British garrison at Newport. His guest was the Marquis de La Fayette, 
who was sent with two brigades of Continental troops by AVashington to 
reinforce Sullivan. The failure of the French fleet to cooperate compelled 
Sullivan to evacute Khodc Island after the sanguinary contest of Butts 
Hill and Quaker Hill. The officers in green were Frenchmen. They 
came to the county seat of Kent to partake of Gen. Varnum's hospitality. 

The record of what transpired during the stay of La Fayette rests wholly 
on the reminiscences of tlie late Miss Eleanor Fry, a venerable Quakeress 
who lived in an ancient garabrel-roofed house on the site now occupied by 
the Central Hotel, immediately adjoining the Kent County Court House 
on the south. Miss Fry, known to the villagers as ' Cousin Ellen,' died 
many years ago. She was a beautiful woman in her youth, and a favorite 
in the courtly society of the Revolutionary period. She witnessetl the 
little procession of guests I6d by Gen. Varnum with La Fayette at his 
side as they came along King Street, crossed Main Street and tlience 
walked up the short ascent of Coui't Street — by the house afterwards occu- 
pied by Dr. Peter Turner of Continental army fame at the battle of Red 
Bank — to the residence of Gen. Vai-num on Pearce Street. 

The imposing facade of the house appeared exactly as at present, save 
that it was not shadowed by the two great elm trees that stand iu front. 
They were then young trees recently planted. The location was, as it is 
today, the best in the village. Narragansett Bay stretched out in front 
toward Newport. "Warwick Neck and distant Bristol were in view. The 
quaint old town, then consisting almost entirely of unpainted houses, the 
streets sandy and rain-washed, lay on the side hill sloping toward the 
waters of Greenwich Cove. In 1778 the Varnum mansion was isolated, 
with broad fields and meadows on either side and extending far back in the 
rear. Pearce Street contained only four houses, and was an out-of-the- 
way portion of the village. The house, resplendent with white paint, 
green blinds, and huge, shining brass knocker on the front door, was re- 
garded as a palace by the townspeople, many of whom characterized it as 
'Varnum's Folly,' and as savoring of aristocratic and unrepublican pre- 
tense and display. 


According to ' Cousin Ellen ' Fry the several days tiiat tlic gallant La 
Fayette and the French officers passed as the guests of Gen. Varnum were 
of unwonted gayety. Every evening tea was served, to which the village 
beauties, with their chaperons, were invited. La Fayette lodged in the 
northeast chamber. Ilis valet slept on a cot outside the door. Gen. 
Yarnum occupied the southeast chamber. The French officers were placed 
in the southwest chamber. . The nights Avere spent in conviviality. It 
was a free living, hard drinking age, and the breakfasts were at a very 
late liour. 

The occasion of La Fayette's visit was characterized by Gen. Varnum 
as his house-ioarmiiig . It is believed that Gen. Sullivan was of the 
memorable party. 

Koturning from a visit to Boston, Gen. Wasiiington passed a night in 
Varuum's house. He dined and supped there, and during tlie afternoon 
enjoyed a brief siesta in the northeast chamber. The journey westward 
was resumed the following day over the old road tlu'ougli Coventry, to 
Lebanon, where Wasiiington stayed with Governor Jonathan Ti-umbull." 

Generals !N'athanael Greene and John Sullivan and the 
Corate dc Kochambcau, the Commander-in-Chief of the French 
army, — under wliora Gen. Varnum served in Khode Island, 
and between whom and Varnum there was formed a sincere 
and lusting i'riendship, with sundry members of his staff, — 
were also guests at this hospitable mansion. 

Commissary General Claude Blanchard of the French army 
rehites in his diary that when he dined with General Varnum, 
at the hitters house on the 20Lh of August, 1780, the entire 
conversation was carried on in Latin. 

It was doubtless at or soon after the visit of the Marquis de 
Lafayette above referred to, that the latter presented to Gene- 
ral Varnum the Punch Bowl, of which a picture appears in 
this volume, and which is now owned by the Rhode Island So- 
ciety of the Cincinnati, of which General Varnum was subse- 
quently President. 

In April, 1780, the people of the State of Rhode Island " in 


grateful recollection of his eminent services in the cause of 
jiublic liberty, and desirous to throw into the national councils 
those distinguished talents which could be sj^ared from the 
field," elected General Yarnum their delegate to the Confede- 
rated or Continental Congress of that year, and he was reelected 
the next year, serving from May ',k\, 1780, to May 1, 1782; and 
he was subsequently reelected for the term from May 1st, 1786, 
to May 2d, 1787. 

As that body sat with closed doors, his voice could not be 
heard by the public, but his name appeared very often on the 
published journal, and it is evident that he exerted great power 
and influence. 

In 1781 he was one of the Committee appointed to apportion 
amongst the States the assessments for public expenses and 
cari'ying on the war, was Chairman of the Committee to whom 
was referred a report of the Board of Admiralty, embracing 
instructions to private armed vessels, was one of the Committee 
who reported a resolution which was adopted giving the thanks 
of Congress to Brigadier-General Morgan and the officers and 
men under his command for their fortitude and good conduct 
in the action at the Cowpens. 

In 1782 he served on many committees, and amongst others 
was Chairman of the Committee authorizing the exchange of 
Lieut.-General Bui'goyne and his officers; he reported and had 
passed a resolution urging the States to send full representa- 
tions to Congress; was on Committee to express the thanks of 
Congress to Washington, Rochambeau and de Grasse after the 
victory at Yorktown; and was Chairman of the Committee to 
thank General Greene and his officers after the battle of Eutaw 
Springs. In 1786-7 General Yarnum also occupied similar 
impoitant positions in Congress. 

Mr. Augustus C. Buell, in his recently published Avork en- 
titled " Paul Jones, founder of the American Navy " (Yol. II. 

j^uiES M.: rrpTH ge^teratiox. 165 

pp. 58-61) refers to General Varnum as the Chairman of the 
Select Committee of Congress, March 28th, 1781, to investi- 
gate and rej3ort as to the conduct of Commodore John Paul 
Jones, which committee, after a protracted and searching in- 
quiry, not only exonerated the Commodoi'e from all charges, 
but reiJorted resolutions giving him the thanks of the United 
States for his distinguished services, which resolutions wci'e 
unanimously passed by Congress by standing vote. 

Mr. Buell also gives interesting quotations from General 
Varnum's own account of the proceedings of that committee.* 

It appears also that Varnum Avas one of a committee ap- 
pointed by Congress to draft a proclamation which was adopted 
and issued by Congress on the 26th day of October, 1781, 
designating December 13th as a day of general thanksgiving 
and prayer, in special commemoration of the confederation of 
the States, the victories of our allies at sea, the prowess of our 
troops, and the surrender of Cornwallis and his whole army at 

Those familiar with Yarnum's writing and addresses are of 
the opinion from the style and form of the proclamation that he 
was its draughtsman. t 

The distinguished Dr. WiUiam Samuel Johnson, of Connec- 
ticut, who was in Congress with him in 1786, referring to 
General Yarnum's Congressional career, said that " he was a 
man of uncommon talents and of the most brilliant eloquence." 

In the " Memoirs of Elkanah Watson," an exceedingly rare 
book, may be found interesting details concerning Varnum. 
The writer describes some of his characteristics : 

"I first saw this learned and amiable man in 1774, when I l}eard him 
deliver a Masonic oration. Until that moment I had formed no concep- 

• Meraorinlof James Mitchell Varnum. Ilis publick Rervices, and excerpts from his diary 
of events piinted for subscribers. — Providence, 1792. 

t " Proclamation for Thanksgiving issued by the Continental Congress, &c." — Munse'.l & 
Rowland, Albany, ISoS. 


of the powei- and charms of oratory. I was so deeply impressed that the 
effects of his splendid exhibition has remained for 48 years indelibly fixed 
on my mind. I then compared his mind to a beautiful parterre, ft-om 
whicli he was enabled to pluck tlie most gorgeous and fanciful flowers, in 
his progress to enrich and embellish the subject." 

General Yannim upon his retirement from the army devoted 
himself assiduously to the practice of the law, with increased 
reputation, and despite interruptions later for several years 
caused by his Congressional duties, became recognized as one 
of the leading and most brilliant men at the. bar of Rhode Is- 
land, and was retained in all the most important causes. 

Many great and important cases arose growing out of the 
relations of the nation to the state. One of the most notable 
of these, was the gi-eat paper money case of Trevett against 
"Weeden, Avhich stirred the community to its very foundation. 
The questions involved and their importance are fully set forth 
at considerable length in the biography of General Varnum in 
Undyke's Memoirs of the Rhode Island Bar. It was tried in 
September, 1786. 

General Varnimi was the counsel for the successful defend- 
ant, and his argument was considered masterly and convincing. 

An attempt being afterwards made to impeach the Justices 
of the Supreme Court for their decision in the above case, 
General Varnum appeared for the judges, and his argument is 
described as having been " cojjious, argumentative and elo- 
quent," and the attempt at impeachment fell through. 

Mr. Updyke sajs, " It was eulogium enough on Varnum 
that the power of those speeches wrought such a triumphant 
victory over public opinion, that the dominant party, to save 
themselves from political prostration, were compelled to repeal 
their arbitrary acts within sixty days after their passage." 

In another celebrated case in which Varnum took part, we 
have fortunately handed down to us a vivid description of the 


personality of the leading counsel, Hon. William Samuel John- 
son, of Connecticut, and General Yarnum. 

It was the fashion of the bar of that day to be very well or 
elegantly dressed, and after describing Dr. Johnson's appear- 
ance, and his dress of black silk cut velvet, Mr. Updyke then 
describes the opposing counsel : 

" Gen . Varnum appeared with his brick-colored coat, trimmed with o;old 
lace, Inickskin and small clotlies, with gold lace knee bands, silk stockings 
and boots (Gen. Barton and himself being the only gentlemen who wore 
boots all day at that period), with a high, delicate and white forehead, 
with a cowlick on the right side ; eyes prominent and of a dark hue. His 
complexion was rather florid — somewhat corpulent, well proportioned and 
finely formed for strength and agility ; large eyebrows, nose straight and, 
rather broad, teeth perfectly white, a profuse head of hair, short on the 
forehead, turned up some and deeply powdered and clubbed, '\^'hen he 
took off his cocked hat he would lightly brush up his hair forward, while 
with a fascinating smile lighting up his countenance he took his seat in 
court opposite hie opponent." 

Mr. Wilkins Updyke in a personal letter to Hon. Benjamin 
F. Yarnum (in the possession of his son John M. Yarnum),. 
dated in 1839, says : 

" My eldest brother Daniel studied under General Varnum in 1784, 
and I iiave always been an ardent admirer of the character of the (xeae- 
ral * * • General Varnum was one of the most eloquent men that 
this or any other country ever produced. All the aged bear testimony 
unanimously as to his wonderful oratorical powers, and he was beloved by 
everybody. No one thought himself safe in a trial without him." 

General Yarnum became an original member of the Society 
of the Cincinnati on December 17, 1783, and was the first Yice 
President of the Rhode Island branch of that distinguished 
militai-y order, and after the death of General Nathaniel Greene, 
succeeded the latter as President, a position which he i-etainetl 
until his death. He presided for the last time at the annual 


meeting held in the State House at Providence on the 4th 
July, 1787. 

General Varnuni was a warm and unwavering advocate for 
a federal constitution; he knew the inefficiency of the confed- 
eration, and the selfish considerations that governed the States, 
and felt that unless an instrument cementing the Union was 
speedily adopted, future efforts would be unavaiUng. 

The following letter, dated August 24th, 1787, from him to 
Hon. Mr. Holton, — (probablj^ Hon. Samuel Holton, a promi- 
nent member of Congress from Massachusetts) — gives General 
Varnum's views as to the pi-oper form for a constitution. It 
will be noticed that the Constitution, as finally adopted after 
his death, followed substantially the lines suggested by him in 
this letter : * 

" Sly worthy friend : 

You have several times hinted the difficulty of exjircssing upon paper, 
ones ideas of an energetic federal government, ahho' convinced of the in- 
adequacy of our present system. Permit me to devote fifteen minutes to 
this subject ; and, as detail or amplification is unnecessary to an informed 
mind, I shall confine myself to principles. 

These principles may be considered under two heads. The first as orig- 
inating from the confederacy and directing tlie various powers that should 
be exercised by tiie nation collectively, and by the States individually. 

The second, as flowing from the nature of civil Society having due re- 
gard to the customs, manners, laws, climates, religions, and pursuits of 
the citizens of the United States. Under this head may be considered 
the manner of exercising these powers, or the formal government of the 

In the first place, whatever respect the citizens collectively, or as imme- 
diately relating to the whole confederacy, whether foreign or domestic, 
must be subjected to the national controul & whatever respects the citi- 
zens of a particular State, & has relation to them as such should be direc- 
ted by the States respectively. But as interferences may sometimes arise 

• This original letter is now in possession of Gen. James M. Varnum of New York. 


the collective power must decide and enforce. This check would be better 
placed in the judiciary than the legislative branches. 

In the second place. The Government of the United States should be so 
modified as to secure the rights of the different classes of citizens. But as 
these are distinguished by education, wealth & talents, they naturally di- 
vide into Aristocratical and Democratical. It is necessary then to form a 
bupreuie legislative, perhaps as Congress is now formed, to originate all 
national laws, and submit them to the revision of a Senatorial body, which 
shall be formed out of equal districts of the United States, by the appoint- 
ment of the Supreme legislative & whose commissions shall be so modified 
as to retain an equal nuinljer of old Members in office with the new, who 
may form a succession. In this body should reside the power of making 
war and peace. 

The execution of the laws, both civil and militaiy, should be placed in 
an executive council, consisting of a President of the United States, and 
the Officers of the great departments of War, Finance, Foreign Affairs, 
and Law, to l)e appointed by the Senate, & commissioned during good 
behavior, excepting the President, who should be appointed by both the 
legislative and senatorial bodies, & commissioned for a term of years, or 
for life. All appointments of Judges & other officers civil and military, 
should be made by the President, by and with advice of the council & 
conmiissioned in his name. Tiiese officers should be accountable for tiieir 
conduct and trialde before the respective tribunals before whom their actions 
would respectively be made <!ognizable. I think the President should not 
be liable to any direct prosecution as in him would reside that part of the 
sovereignty which displays itself in the etiquette of nations. 

In this system, the balance would be secured, Military objects would be 
directed by the Senate, executed by the President and Council & checked 
by the fiscal power of the legislative. 

The objects of revenue should be few, simple and well defined, & in 
case of very uncommon emergency, the States respectively should be 
called upon from contingents, which would form an ultimate and never 
failing check against encroachments upon the political system, 

August 4th, 1787. 

I am Sir, Yrs. 

J. M. Varnum. 
Hon'ble IMr. Helton." 


It would have been well if General Varnum could have been 
content to I'emain at hie own comfortable home, with a wife 
whom he loved and cherished, in a state where he was at once 
a leader of the bar, and universally loved and respected and 
where all were proud to do him honor. But as a matter of 
fact, his health had become considerably impaired, and he had 
a tendency to weakness of the lungs, and the exposure of army 
life had implanted the seeds of pulmonary consumption in his 
system, which were aggravated by his constant laborious and 
strenuous work in his professional aud in public aifairs. 

Yarnum's judicial mind and public services, both in the army 
and Congress, had given him a reputation which extended 
throughout the whole country, aud hence when the " North- 
west Territory," a pet scheme of President Washington's, was 
formed (which included all the territory northwest of the Ohio) 
in 1787, Varnum was chosen as one of the Directors of the 
'"' Ohio Company of Associates " on August 29th, 1787 ; and 
on the 14th of October following, when General Arthur St. 
Clair was designated as Governor, General Yarnum was ap- 
pointed one of the United States Judges for that Territory, a 
position he accepted. 

Accompanied only by Griffen Greene of Coventry, R. I., 
Yarnum left his home in Rhode Island in the Spring of 1788, 
via Baltimore, and journeyed on horseback through the forests 
to Marietta, a town site selected by the New England Land 
Company at the junction of the Ohio and the Muskingum rivers. 
It is known that Yarnum invested considerable money in the 
enterprise. The plans outlined partook of the methods of the 
speculative town boomers of the jj resent age. The name finally 
selected was that of Queen Marie Antoinette, but the Roman 
classics were drawn upon in providing a Campus Martins, a 
via Sacra and a Capitolenura for the infant town. Malaria was 
prevalent and the location was a poor one in all respects. 


lie arrived at Marietta, Ohio, on June oth, 1788, and at a 
■celebration there on the ith of July, was the orator of the day. 
Judge Yarnum's oration was highly commended by all who 
heard it, and was subsequently jniblished by the Directors of 
the Ohio Company, (Augt., 1788) copies of which are still 
extant, but extremely rare. 

On the second day of July following, there being a quorum 
present (Generals Parsons, Varnum and Putnam), the Direc- 
tors of the Ohio Company held their first meeting at Marietta, 
at which meeting, amongst other business transacted, was the 
change of the name of the city from Adelphia to Marietta.* 

A grand celebration of the national holiday took place at 
Marietta on the fourth of July, 1788. 

It is described as follows by Mr. Charles S. Hall in his inter- 
esting life of General Parsons : * 

" There was a procession of the citizens and soldiery and a public dinner 
which was spread under a lonj^ bower built of intertwined oak and maple 
boughs near the North Point at the mouth of the Muskingum. The 
wealth of the rivers and forests was drawn u])on to enrich the feast. 
Amongst the delicacies served was a pike weighing one hundred pounds. 
Patriotic toasts were given and an elocpient oration delivered by Judge 

Lamenting the absence of iiis Excellency Governor St. Clair ' upon this 
joyous occasion,' with uplifted liands he prays ' may he soon arrive,' and then 
turning first towards one and tlien towards the other, he thus apostri>[)hizc8 
the all unconscious rivers flowing on either side : ' Thou gentle flowing 
Ohio, whose surface as conscious of thy unequalled majesty, reflectetli no 
images but the grandeur of the impending heaven, bear him, oh ! bear him 
safely to this anxious spot ! And tJiou beautifully transparent Muskin- 
gum, swell at the moment of his approach, and reflect no olyects but of 
pleasure and delight." 

Thus in the fertile soil of Ohio, by a Rhode Island man, tlie first seeds 
of western eloquence were sown." 

• Life and letters of Gen. S. H. Parsons, by C. S. Hall, Binghamton, N. Y., 1905-6. 


One lumclred and seven years later, on November 29th, 1905, a hand- 
some bronze tablet was unveiled in the city of New York " to commemo- 
rate the great ordinance of 1787 establishing the Northwest Territory, 
and the sale of land to the Ohio Company of Associates." 

The tablet is affixed to the portico of the United States Sub-Treasury 
in AVall Street, tlie site of Federal Hall, where the Congress met which 
enacted that ordinance. Upon it is an appropriate inscription, and in 
prominent letters also appear the following : 

" Directors of the Ohio Compcmy, 1787: 

General Rufus Putnam Rev. Manasseh Cutler 

General Samuel Holden Parsons General James Mitchell Varnura 

iSlajor Winthrop Sargent, Secretary Colonel Richard Piatt, Treasurer." 

From the Amei-ican Pioneer, Cincinnati, 1842, p. 04, we cull 
the following account of the opening of the United States 
Court for the Northwestern Territory : 

"The first court held northwest of the Ohio River under the forms 
of court jurisprudence was opened at Campus ^Nlartius, ^Marietta, Sejitem- 
ber 2d, 1788." * • * 

On the preceding 7th of April, General Rufus Putnam, with 
forty-seven men, had landed and made the first pei-manent set- 
tlement, in what is now the State of Ohio. General Harmar 
Avith his regulars occupied Fort Harmar. Governor St. Clair 
and Generals Parsons and Varnum, Judges of the Supreme 
Court, arrived in July. 

From a manuscript written by an eye vntness, we have the 
following account of the ceremonies on this first opening of 
court : 

"The procession was formed at the Point (where most of the settlers 
resided) in the following order: 

Ist The High Sheriff, with his drawn sword. 
2d The citizens, 


3cl The officers of the Giirrison of Fort Harmar. 
4th The members of tlie B:ir. 

5th The Supreme Jutlges (Generals Vartuim and Parsons). 
6th Tlie Governor and clergyman. 

7th The newly fippointed Judges of the Court of Common Pleas 
(Generals Rufiis Putnam and Benjamin Tupper). 

They marelied up a path that had heen out and cleared througli the 
forest to Campus Martius Hall (stockade) where the whole countermarched 
and tli'^ Judges took their seats. 

After a Idessing hy the Rev. Dr. (hitler, the Sheriff Col. Ebenezer 
Sproat proclaimed 'Afith his solenm " Oyez " tlie opening of a court for 
the administration of even handed justice. 

Altliougli this scene was exhibited thus early in the settlement of tlie 
state, few ever equalled it in the dignity and the oxaltoil character of prin- 
cipal |iartici|)>tion. Many of them belong to tlie history of our country 
in the darkest as well as the most splendid periods of the Revolutionary 
A\'ar. To witness this spectacle, a large body of Indians was collected 
fi-onj t'e most powerful tribes, then occupying the almost entire w^est." 

We Icai-n from another source that the Indians were specially 
impressed by the commanding aspect and the piercing eyes Di 
the High Sheriff, Colonel Sproat, and that they gave him tiu> 
name of Hotuck, or "Buck-eye," from whence is derived the 
cognomen by which the state of Ohio and its residents have 
since become* generally known. 

Judge Vai'uum assisted Govei-nor St. Clair and Judge Par- 
sons in fi-aming a code of laws for the territory, but this was 
his last official act, as his health which had been constantly 
declining since he left home I'apidly became worse, and it be- 
came evident to all that the end was not far off. 

It was about this time that Judge A^arnum, who was sup- 
posed bj' many of his acquaintances to be if not an agnostic at 
least devoid of deep religious convictions, wrote the following- 
touching and beautiful letter to his wife : 


"Marietta, 18th DeccinW, 1788. 
My dearest and most aiiiial)le friend : 

I now write you from my sick chamber, and perhaps it will be the last 
letter that you will receive from me. My lunjjs are so far affected, that 
it is impossible for me to recover but b}' exchange of air and a warmer 
climate. I expect to leave this place on Sunday or Monday next for the 
falls of the Ohio. If I feel myself mend by the tour, I shall go no farther, 
but if not, and my strength should continue, I ex|)ect to proceed to New 
Orleans, and from thence to the West Indies & to Rliode Island. My phy- 
sicians, most of them think the chances of recovery in my favor ; however, 
I am neither elevated nor depressed by the force of opinion ; but shall 
meet my fate with humility and fortitude. 

I cannot however but indulge the liope, that I shall again embrace my 
lovely fi'iend in this world, and that we may glide smoothly down the tide 
of time for a few years, and enjoy together the more substantial iiappiness 
and satisfaction as we have had already the desiraljle pleasures of life. 

It is now almost nineteen years since Heaven connected us by the ten- 
derest and the most sacred ties, and it is the same length of time that our 
friendship has been increased by every rational and endearing motive ; it 
is now stronger than death, and I am firmly persuaded will follow us into 
an existence of never ending felicity. 

But my lovely friend the gloomy moment will arrive when we must 
part; and should it arrive during our present separation, my last and only 
reluctant thoughts will be employed about my dearest Martha. Life, my 
dearest friend, is but a bubble, it soon bursts, and is remitted to eternity. 
When we look back to the earliest recollections of our youthful hours, it 
seems but the last period of our rest, and we appear to emerge from a 
night of slumbers to look forward to real existence. When we look for- 
ward time appears as indeterminate as eternity, and we have no idea of 
its termination but by the period of our dissolution . What particular relation 
it bears to a future state, our general notions of religion cannot point, we 
feel some things constantly active within us, that is evidently beyond the 
reach of mortality, but whether it is a part of ourselves, or^ an emanation 
from the pure source of existence or reabsorbed when death shall have 
finished his work, human wisdom cannot determine. Whether the demo- 
lition of the body introduces only a change in the manner of our being, or 
leaves it to progress infinitely, altei'nately elevated and depressed accord- 

(JAMES M. : flPTH GENEEAflON. 175 

mg to the propriety of our conduct, or whether we return to the common 
mass of unthinking matter, philosophy hesitates to decide. 

1 know therefore but one source from whence can be derived complete 
consolation in a dying hour, and that is the Divine system contained in 
the Gospel of Jesus Clu-ist. There, life and immortality are brought to 
light ; there, we ai'e taught our existence is to be eternal. And secure in 
an interest in the atoning merits of a bleeding Saviour, that we shall be 
inconceivably happy. A firm and unshaken faith in this doctrine must 
raise us above tlie doubts and fears that hang upon every other system, and 
enable us to view with a calm serenity the a))i)roach of tlie King of Terrors, 
and to behold him as a kind and indulgent friend, spending his sliafts only 
to carry us the sooner to our everlasting home. But should tiiere be a 
more extensive religion beyond the veil, and without the reach of mortal 
observation, the Christian religion is by no means shaken thereby, and it 
ie not opposed to any principle that admits of the perfect benevolence of 
deity. My onl}' doubt is, whether the punishment threatened in the N^ew 
Testament is annexed to a state of unbelief which may be removed here- 
after, and so restoration take place, or whether the state of the mind at 
death irretrievably fixes its doom forever. I hope and pray that the divine 
spirit w'ill give me such assurance of an acceptance with God, through the 
merits and sulferings of his Son, as to brighten the way to immediate hap- 

Dry up your tears, my charming mourner, nor suffer this letter to give 
too much inquietude. Consider the facts at present as in theory, but the 
sentiments such as will apply whenever the change shall come. 

I know that humanity must and will be indulged in its keenest griefs, 
but there is no advantage in too deeply anticipating our inevitable sorrows. 
If I did not persuade myself that you would conduct witli becoming pru- 
dence and fortitude, upon this occasion, my own unhappiness would be 
greatly increased, and perhaps my disorder too, but I have so much con- 
fidence in your discretion as to unbosom my inmost soul. 

You must not expect to hear from me again until the coming Spring, as 
the river will soon be siuit up with ice, and there will ije no communica- 
tion from below, and if in a situation for the purpose 1 will return as soon 
aa practicable. 

Give my sincerest love to all those you hold dear. I hope to see them 
again, and love them more than ever. Adieu, my dearest friend. And 


while I fervently tlcvote in one undivided prayer, our immortal souls to 
the care, forgiveness, mercy and all prevailing grace of Heaven in time 
and through eternity, I must bid you a long, long, long farewell. 

James M. Varnum." 

On the 10th day of January, 1789, General Varnum passed 
away, at the Campus Martins at Marietta. 

His remains were interred there with great solemnity and 

The ibi lowing was the 

Order of Procession.* 
Mr. Wheaton, bearing the sword and military commission of the de- 
ceased on a mourning cushion. 
Mr. Lord, bearing the civil commission on a mourning cushion. 
Mr. Mayor, with the diploma and Order of the Cincinnati on a mourn- 
ing cushion. 
Mr. Fearing, with the insignia of Masonry on a mourning cushion. 

Pall Supporters. 
Griffin Greene, 
Judge Tupper, 
William Sargeant, Esq. 

Pall Supporters. 
Judge Crary, 
Judge Parsons, 
Judge Putnam. 

Private Mourners. Private Mourners. 

Mr. Charles Greene, Mr. Richard Greene, 

]\Ir. Frederic Crary, Mr. Philip Greene, 

Dr. Scott, Dr. Tinley, 

Deacon Story. Dr. Drown. 

Private Citizens. 
Thirty Indian Chiefs. 
Officers of Fort Harmer. 
Civil Officers. 
The Gentlemen of the Order of the Cincinnati. 
Mr. Clark, ^Ir. Stratton, Mr. Leach and Mr. Balch superintended the 
order of the procession, and the whole were preceded by Captain Zeigler 

» Provideoce Gazette, March 7thi 1789, 


of Fort Harmcr with troops and music. A very nffcoting oration was 
delivered on tiie nielanclioly occasion (January 13tb, 178tl), by Dr. Solo- 
mon Drown. 

This oration was subsequently published by the Ohio Com- 
pany. It was reprinted in " The First Settlement of the North- 
west Territory," a pamphlet published at Marietta in 1888. 

General Varnum's burial place was on a ridge northeast of 
the mound near the stockade, but his remains, with those of a 
number of other officers, were many years afterwards removed 
to Oak Grove Cemetery, where they now rest. 

We here quote again from Mr. "NMlkins Updyke, who says : 

"It might have been gratifying to his vanity, but Gen. Varnuni com- 
mitted an unfortunate error in accepting the office to which he was ap- 
pointed. He had impaired his constitution by a free and ]ii>eral life, and 
witli an enfeebled physical system, to leave his family, his circle of friends, 
and the comforts of an old State, and a delightful mansion erected in ac- 
cordance to his own taste, and ornamented to his fancy, to become a kind 
of pioneer in a new and unsettled country, among strangers, and in a so- 
ciety uncongenial to his habits, was delusive — fatally dchisivc. 

Professional pursuits, in our populous cities, are both more reputable 
and profitable than any of oui- national a]ipointmenfs. Yet tlie o\er-|)ow- 
ering charm of being predistinguishcd from among the people as capable, 
or being selected from among our associates as entitled to public honor, is 
too alluring to individual vanity. But the abandonment of our country, 
our fn-esides, and the endearing connections of home, is a sacrifice too dear 
for it all. And so the unfortunate Varuum found it, on liorsebMck, and 
attended by a solitary companion (Griffin Greene), lie left a country that 
honored him, and an idolizing people, and traversed eight hundred miles 
of wilderness, mostly devoid of the comforts of life. And at his journey's 
end was tabernacled in a nide stockade, surrounded l)y excitements, his 
disorders aggravated for the want of retirement and repose, breathing the 
deadly cxhahitions of a great and sluggish river, and protected, by mihtary 
array, from tiie incursions of the western savage. The issue proved he 
had no chance for life, and with a constitution too much impaired to return, 
he there lingered and expired." 


Mr. Updyke concludes with the followmg epitome of General 
Varnum's career : 

" The career of Gen. Varnum was active, but bi-ief. He graduated at 
twenty, was ailiuitted to tlie hax aXtwenty-Uoo, entered the army at ticoity- 
seven, resigned his commission at thirty-one, was member of Congress 
the same year, resumed his practice at thirty-three, continued his practice 
four years, was elected to Congress again at thirty-seven, emigrated to 
the West at thirty-7iine, and died at the early age oi forty. From the 
time of his admission to the bar to iiis departure from the state was seven- 
teen years ; duducting the four years he was in the military service, and 
three years he was in Congress, his actual professional life was only ten 


* * * * 

A century has passed since General Yarnum delivered at 
Marietta the first oration ever delivered in this country in the 
territory northwest of the Ohio. 

Once again, and on the seventh day of April, 1888, there is 
a celebration at Marietta, now in the great and flourishing state 
of Ohio, on the occasion of the centennial anniversary of the 
founding of the great Northwest. And again in an oration 
delivered, the orator of the day is the Honorable George Frisbie 
Hoar, a distinguished Senator of the United States from the 
state of Massaclnisetts, and his oration* is a magnificent tribute 
from posterity after the lapse of one hundred years, to the pi- 
oneers of 1788, and incidentally to the subject of this biograph- 
ical sketch. We quote therefrom as follows : 

" I do not believe the same number of persons fitted for the highest du- 
ties and responsibilities of war and peace could ever have been found in a 
community of the same size as ^J'ere among tlie men who founded Marietta 
in the Spring of 1788. * » * 

'I knew them all,' cried Lafayette, when the list of nearly fifty military 
ofificers who were among the pioneers was read to him at Marietta in 1825. 
'I knew them all. I saw them at Brandy wine, Yorktown and Rhode Is- 
land. They were the bravest of the brave.' 

* Publislied by Charles Hamilton, Worcester, Mass., 1895. 6th edition. 


Wasliington and Varnurn, as well as Carrington and Lafayette, dwell 
chieHv, as was Washington's fashion, upon the personal cj.uality of the 
men and not ujion their public offices or titles. Indeed to be named with 
such coinnicndMlion, u[)on personfd knowledge, by the cautious and consci- 
entious A\'asliingtoii, was to a veteran soldier better tlian being knighted 
on the field of battle. 

Your hearts are full of their memories. The stately figures of illustri- 
ous warriors and etatesnu'n, the forms of sweet and comely matrons, living 
anrl real as if you had seen them yesterday, rise bcl'ore us now," and 
amongst them " Wirnuiii, than whom a courtlier figure never entered the 
presence of a queen — soldier, statesman, sciiolar, (n-ator — of whom 
Thomas Paine, no mean judge, who had heard all the greatest English 
orators in tiie greatest days of English eloquence, declared the most elo- 
quent man he had ever heard speak."' 

Notes to the foregoing biography of General James M. Varnurn. 

His Military and Civil Commissions. 
Tiic only one of these commissions now known to be in existence i& 
that issued to him by William Greene, Governor, Captain (General and 
Commander in Chief of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Planta- 
tion, as Major General of the State of Rhode Island, which bears date 
May lOtli, 1779. It was under and by virtue of this commission that 
Vaiiiuni, althongii no longer in the Continental Army, acted in coo|)era- 
tion with the Comte de Rochambeau and his force in Rhode Island, during 
the later years of the war of the Revolution. This commission is now in 
the possession of General James M. Varnum of New York, the namesake 
and kinsmau of the officer to whom it was issued. 

His Sword. 
One of his swords is still in existence, and in excellent preservation. 
It is the same shown in the portrait of General Varnum, a copy of which, 
appears iu this volume. 


His Will axd Estate. 

Generarl Varnum by his will dated October 28, 1782, gave all his estate 
to his wife. 

The will was admitted to probate at East Greenwich, May oOth, 1789, 
and his father in law Cromel Child was appointed his administrator. 

The inventory shows that his personal estate v/as small — less than £300. 

Books of Reference. 

Memoirs of the Rhode Island Bar, by AYilkins Updyke, Providence. 
(Contains a long and interesting Biography.) 

Register of the /Society of the Cincinnati in Rhode Island, by Asa 
Bird Gardiner. (In press.) 

General James M. Varnum of the Continental Armt/, by Asa Bird 
Gardiner (James M. Varnum collaborating). " Magazine of American 
History," Sept., 1887. 

The case of Trevett against Weeden, by James M. Varnum, Esq., 
Major-General of the State of Rhode Island, &c.. Counsellor at law and 
JNIember of Congress for said State. Providence — Printed by John 
Carter, 1787. (Copy in possession of James M. Varnum of New 

Oration, delivered at Marietta, July 4th, 1788, by the Hon. James M. 
Varnum, Esq., one of the Judges of the Western Territory, &c. New- 
port, R. I. Printed by Peter Edes, 1788. (Copy in possession of 
James M. Varnum, of New York.) 

Oration of Dr. Solomon Drown at the funeral of General Varnum at 
Marietta on January 13th, 1789. (Original in possession of Henry 
R. Drowne, Esq., of New York.) 

Oration of Dr. Solomon Drown at Marietta, April 7th, 1789, containing 
allusion to General Varnum. Worcester, Mass. Isaiah Thomas, 

Jleinorial of James Mitchet Varnum. His Publick Services and 
Excerpt from his Diary of Events. Printed for subscribers. Provi- 
dence, 1792. (This book is referred to and quoted from in "Paul 
Jones, Founder of the American Navy." Mr. Buell, the editor, made 
these extracts in 1886, but the compilers of this work have been unable 
after diligent Inquiry to find a copy.) 


T V V A K M I 


- 1 ) A N i t i. i >) 

JOSEPH B.: FIFTH gexeratio:n^. 181 

The first Settlement of the Northicest Territortj, Marietta, Ohio, 
Api-il 7th, 1778. Pamphlet published at Marietta in connection witli 
the Centennial celebration, 1888. (Interesting.) 

Historical Address, by Rev. Dr. Goodwin, at East Greenwich, R. I., 
October 15th, 1891), on the occasion of the 125th Anniversary of the 
Kentish Guards (with complimentary reference to Varnum). 

Paul Jones, Founder of the American JSTavy, by Augustus C. Biiell, 
Vol. 2, page 59. Chas. Scribner & Sons, 1900. 

Oration by Bon. James 31. Varnum before the Lodge of Free and Ac- 
cepted Masons in the Church at Providence, December 28th, 1778. 
Providence, 1778. (Copy in K. I. His. Soc. Library.) 

Manning and Brown University, by R. A. Guild, pp. 88 and 279. 
Biography 9G-102. Gould and Lincoln, Boston, 1864. 

77/6 First Commencement at Broion University, by R. A. Guild. — 
Collections R. I. Hist. Soc. Vol. 7. Providence, 1885. 

And many other histories, encyclopedias and articles relating to tlie 
Revolutionary War, the Continental Congress, and the State of Rhode 
Island, and the settlement of tlie "territory north-west of tlie Ohio." 

108. Joseph Bradley Varxum* (Samuel,'^ Joseph,^ Sam- 
uel,- George'), born 29 Jan., 1749-50; died 11 Sept., 1821; 
married 20 Jan., 1773, by Rev. Amos Moody, to Molly, daugh- 
ter of Jacob and ]\[ol]y (Eames) Butler of Pelham, N. H., 
born 4 Jimc, 1750, died 17 April, 1833. 
Twelve children: 

i. Hitty,' b. 2 Nov., 1773; d. 30 Dec, 1814; m. (int.) 
7 Sept., 1797, Daniel, son of Abraham and Sarah (BraiUey) 
Swett of Haverhill, Mass., b. 2 Nov., 1772, d. 9 Oct., 1824. 
Nine children (Swett) : 

Mary Butler, b. 2 Aug., 1798; d. unm. 17 Oct., 1888. 
Sarah Bradley, b. 2. Aug., 1798; d. unm. 10 Sept., 

1877. Both were for many years school teathers. 
Harriet, b. 24 June, 1800; d. 12 Feb., 188(5; m. 24 
Sept., 1822, Samuel Bragdon, of Newburyport, d. l."'. 
Apr., 185G. 


Dracutt town records : " To all whom it may concern, 
Be it known that I have taken my grandaughter Har- 
riet Swett into my family, and by the consent of her 
parents have adopted her as a d lughter, and with then- 
consent and at my request, she has assumed the name 
of Harriet Swett Varnum, and is hereby entitled to a 
share of my property equal to other daughters or their 

In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand at 
Dracutt the 14th day of Sept., 1812. 

Joseph Bradley Varnum. 
By Act of the Legislature of Massachusetts passed 
17 June, 1817, the name Harriet Swett became Harriet 
Swett Varnum. (State Kecords.) 
Elizabeth, b. 3 April, 1802 ; d. 18 Dec, 1812. 
Daniel, b. 14 April, 1804; d. 12 April, 1879; m. 27 

May, 1825, Sarah Hunt of Boston. 
Hitty Varnum, b. 14 April, 1804; d. 5 April, 1876; 
m. 2 Sept., 1822, Benj. H. Swett of Lynn, d. 23 
April, 1868. 
Emily, b. 14 Sept., 1S08; d. 9 Dec, 1854; m. 13 

April, 1830, Dana Richardson of Dracutt. 
Charles, b. 10 Sept., 1809; d. 14 Sept., 1809. 
Elizabeth Ann Appleton, b. 23 Aug., 1814 ; d. 26 Mar., 
1852; m. 13 AprU, 1837, Walter Rockwood, b. 12 
July, 1810, at Groton, Mass., d. 13 July, 1851, at 
Nashville, Tenn. 
ii. Molly, b. 24 Feb., 1775; d. 12 Dec, 1866; m. 7 July, 1794, 
Gen. Simon, son of Simon and Keziah (Durant) Coburn of 
Dracutt, b. 17 Feb., 1770, d. 4 Sept., 1843. 

Simon Coburn was commissioned Lieutenant in the 7th 
Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 3rd Division, Massachusetts Volun- 
teer Mihtia, 1 1 Aug., 1803 ; Captain, 6 May, 1806 ; Major, 
29 July, 1809; Lt. Colonel, 2 Nov., 1811; and Brigadier 
General 3rd Regt. 2nd Brigade 3rd Division, 21 Sept., 1813. 
He lived on the Methuen road, a half mile below Gen. Joseph 
Bradley Varnum. At his house, while on a visit, Mrs. MoUy 


Hannah Varnum — Maj. Ephraim Coburn 


(Butler) Varnum passed away in 1833. He was buried in 
the Varnum Cemetery where, twenty-three years after, his 
wife was laid beside him, 
Seven children (Coburn) : 

Samuel Adams, b. 13 May, 1705 ; d. 24 March, 1856 ; 
m. (1) Eleanor Varnum, (2) Rebecca Bradley, (3) 
Lydia Fish. 
Mary, b. 18 Jan., 1799; d. unm. 4 Jlarch, 1877. 
Joseph Bradley Varnum, b. 4 Aug., 1801 ; d. 19 Sept., 

1869 ; m. Mercy Parker. 
Thomas Jefferson, b. 17 April, 1804 ; d. 27 Dec, 1871 ; 

m. Sarah Tufts. 
John Hancock, b. 11 April, 1806; d. 17 Dec, 1871; 

m. Jane Miller. 
Emily, b. 15 June, 1811; d. 10 Jan., 1890; m. 17 

iMay, 1832, J:dward Tuck. 
George Washington, b. 29 Nov., 1815; d. 23 Dec, 
1888 ; m. 16 jMay, 1838, Mary Bamford. 
Phebe, b. 3 Feb., 1778; d. 11 Aug., 1778. 
iv. George Washington, b. 21 Feb., 1779 ; d. unm. 8 July, 1812, 

at Lynchburg, Va. 
V. Abigail, b. 7 Jan., 1781; d. 25 April, 1814; m. 15 May, 
1803, Capt. Josiah Brown of Tewksbury. 
One child (Brown) : 

Jane, b. 22 Oct., 1804; d. 8 Sept., 1901; m. William 
Smith of St. Louis, 
vi. Hannah, b. 18 Feb., 1783; d. 12 March, 1847; m. 23 June, 
1805, Maj. Epiiraim, son of Epliraim and Jane ( ) 

Coburn of Dr.acutt, b. 28 Dec, 1777; d. 20 Aug., 1851. 
Six children (Coburn) : 

Jane, b. 22 Sept., 1806; m. Charles Morgan. 
Mary Almira, b. 2 Feb., 1809 ; d. unm. 23 Oct., 1880. 
Hannah Augusta, b. 30 April, 1812; m. George W. 

Joseph Bradley Varnum, b. 28 June, 1814 ; m. Lydia 

Henry Dearborn, b. 1 Feb., 1817; d. 22 Oct., 1821. 
Lauretta, b. 28 Dec, 1819 ; m. Fisher A. Hildreth. 



117 vii. Joseph Bradley, b. 3 Jan., 1785 ; m. Mary Jane Graham. 

118 viii. James Mitchell, b. 2 Aug., 1786; m. Mary Pease. 

119 ix. Jacob Butler, b. 13 June, 1788; m. (1) Mary Jane Aikin ; 

(2) Catharine Dodamead. 
X. Phebe, b. 14 July, 1790; d. 1 Oct., 1863 ; m. 1815, Capt. 
Josiah Brown of Tewksbury, ISIass. 
Two children (Brown) : 
Josiah, b. 17 Sept., 1816. 

William, b. 27 July, 1819 ; d. 27 March, 1867. 
xi. John Hancock, b. 21 June, 1792; d. 26 Dec, 1801. 

120 xii. Benjamin Franklin, b. 11 April, 1795 ; m. Caroline Bradley. 


By John MarsliaU VarnumJ' 

Joseph Bradley Yaenum was born, lived and died in 
Dracutt on the farm left him by his father, Samuel. In his 
early years he had the common school advantages which was 
the lot of all youth of his day and generation, which although 
meagre in the light of modern educational advancement was 
an excellent foundation, because thorough even in its limits. 
Of his three brothers, James Mitchell alone attained to a col- 
lege education, graduating in the first class of Pi'ovidence 
College, now Brown University. Samuel Yarnum, the father, 
like all IN^ew England farmers, could not afford to all his sons 
the same advantages of education, and Joseph Bradley, the 
third son, had to remain to carry on the home farm. He was, 
however, a youth with a definite purpose in life, and sought 
diligently to improve his mind with such means as was then 
available. It is said of him, that he used to lay down evenings 
before the blazing wood fire, and despite the fatigue and 
monotony of farm life, devote himself to study. 

In his autobiography,* written in the last years of his life, he 

• Autobiography dictated by him to and written by his niece, Harriet Swett Vamum, in 
1818, in the possession of Jolm M. Varnum. 

Hon. Joseph Bradley Varnum 




narrates that he had " but a very scanty library for a young 
man to refer to, in order to obtain knowledge without a teacher, 
but a strict attention to agriculture did not prevent him from 
often recurring to it, and he spent many hours in pursuit of his 
object." It was, perhaps, unfortunate that his self-taught 
knowledge, which in after life, with his commanding intellect, 
gained him high credit in the many public positions which he 
filled, led him to place undue stress upon it, and to regard a com- 
mon school or academic education suflBcient for his sons, who 
greatly lamented their deficiency of knowledge, although they 
all went to the academy at Westford, of which their father was 
one of the incorporators. 

A thoughtful, studious boy, young Yarnum could not but 
make a sober-minded man. Even at the age of thirteen he 
was mindful of the sense of his obligation to his ISIaker, and 
that turn of mind so actuated him during his long political 
career, that his character was ever of stern and inflexible in- 
tegrity. Many years after, towards the close of his life (1818), 
he became an ardent Baptist, and together with his wife and 
others was immersed in the waters of the little brook flowing 
through his farm. There being none other than Congregational 
or Orthodox worship in the Dracutt Centre Meeting-house, to 
which he was an original subscriber, he joined the Baptist So- 
ciety in Haverhill. Secession from stated worship, for which 
every man was compelled to pay tithes, was, in that day, rank 
heresy, and in consequence of this act the use of the Centre 
Meeting-house was denied to his son, for a funeral discourse 
after his father's decease. 

When he was twenty-two years of age, he took unto himself 
a wife, who, in all senses, was a valuable and efficient helpmate. 
He speaks of her, after their forty-eight years of married life, 
and twelve children had blessed their union, of the "cordiality 
and friendship which had uniformly pervaded their minds since 


their first acquaintance, and how when, in 1782, nine years after 
their marriage, they lost by fire their home and its contents^ 
which their industry and economy had accumulated, yet find- 
ing that none of their dear children were consumed in the 
flames, they blessed God that nothing more grievous had be- 
fallen them." Molly Butler was the daughter of Jacob and 
Mary (Eames) Butler of Pelham, N. H., a town adjoining 
Dracutt. She was of sturdy New England stock, and ever 
retained the love and esteem of her husband, and the warm 
affection of her children. On the tablet to her memory, 
erected in the little burial-ground adjoining the Gen. Varnum 
farm, is justly inscribed: "Her children rise up and call her 
blessed." Her husband further says of her: "Throughout the 
whole of the struggle (Am. Revolution) he had the consolation 
and accordance of his beloved Avife. When soldiers were called 
upon to go into service who were not possessed of blankets, 
she furnished them, even to taking of the last she had. When 
they needed shirts or knapsacks, she supplied them by cutting 
up her sheets, even to the head tester sheet of her own bed, 
relying on Divine Providence for strength to manufacture 
more." That she was a woman of sturdy independence and 
imposing dignity of character, is shown by her conduct during 
the inflammatory times of the Shays Reloellion (1786), which 
her husband, at the head of his military company, assisted in 
suppressing. He says : " Mrs. Yarnum was visited by a num- 
ber of those friendly to the insurrection, and insulted in a most 
menacing manner; but that heroic zeal and undeviating patri- 
otism, which was her uniform characteristic during the Revo- 
lutionary War, enabled her to promptly repel their insinuations 
and menaces in such a manner as to comisel them to retire with 
shame and discomfiture." 

Samuel Yarnum, on the marriage of his son, 26 Jan., 1773, 
gave him as his j)ortion " 160 acres of land, with half a dwelling- 

Mrs. Molly (Butler) Varnum 

In whose honor the Lowell Chapter, D. A. R., it named 
From portrait ia possession of Joha M.' Vunum 


house and a barn 30x30. A small portion of the land was 
under cultivation, but it was almost entirely without any per- 
manent fence; but having been raised a farmer, he became at- 
tached to that occupation, and pursued it with all industry and 
perseverance, so that by economy of his wife and the aid of his 
children'" he, in 1818, "owned 500 acres of land, the greater 
part under good cultivation, with extensive buildings, and more 
than ten miles of good stone fence upon it." 

lie was a practical and successful farmer, as is evident from 
the fact that his farm was the main means of support of his 
large family; at least, up to the times when his public services 
took him from his home to Philadelphia and Washington, in 
the early days of the Republic. A letter written to his son 
George in the begiiniiiig of his Congressional career, is an 
evidence of his practical turn of mind, and his deep interest 
in aifairs on his Dracutt farm. 

"Philadelphia, Nov. 28th, 1797. 
You are no douht apprised of the probahility of a hard whiter, and tlie 
Consequent necessity tliere will be of strict Economy In tlie Kxpenditure 
of eveiy kind of Fodder. Tend the Cattle carefully, fodder them often, 
keep them clean and warm, water them three times in a day, and never 
give them more than they will Eat, and still Retain an appetite for nioi'e ; 
all this will not only save fodder, but will be of much Service to the 
Cattle, both in their Flesh and Strenj^th. Throw no Straw, or other 
fodder into the yard, on the common principle of making manure ; but let 
it all be eat by the stock. The Calf which was nigh coming when I left 
home had best be Vealed, and killed at a month old. Tliis will be a 
saving of at least four times the value of the Calf, by the milk of the Cow. 
Let all the Cows which give milk, be tyed together, that they may have 
provender and other high keeping ; from this mode of Treatment additional 
profits will be derived from them. Do not fail to have all the Cattle 
curried every morning, & the Horses twice in a day, every day. Sheep,- 
although Generally the least attended to, in the Winter season, in order to 
ensure profits from them, I think, require the strictest attention of any 
species of stock ; they have a very delicate Taste, and although they will 


live on very little when the Ground is bare if suffered to range, yet in that 
way they are but little profit to the owner ; but if they are properly tended 
to, they are the most profitable stock a Farmer can keep ; they should be 
watered often, have a small matter of sweet fodder at a time and frequently 
repeated ; no oats should be suffered to lay before them from day to day, 
neither should their dung be suffered to remain in the Hovel where they 
feed togetiier for any considerable time. All Cattle, Horses, Sheep and 
Swine should have their feed at particular set times, each day ; a scanty 
allowance in that way, will keep a Stock much better than even a Sur- 
plusage dealt out to them in a different manner. 

In order to Succeed in any profession or Occupation in life it is highly 
necessary and important, to pay strict attention to the duties of it, and at 
all such times, as the nature thereof shall require. To be a Farmer, a 
consistent Farmer, happy in the Occupation, and respectable in Society, 
it is necessary to rise Early in the IMorning, Pay Speedy attention to all 
necessary requirements, and take advantage of the Labours of tiie day, 
by performing tiie most arduous part, before the Sun arises to its Meridian 
Splendor. The strictest attention must be paid to the Buildings, Fences, 
Stock of Cattle, husbandry tools, and every species of produce. All 
necessary repairs must be Early made. No part of the produce must be 
suffered to be wasted or lost for want of care. Thus the Farmer becomes 
wealthy, respectable and liappy. *»»»»»* 

I highly revere all the laudable professions and Occupations in Life, 
and I should be very happy to have it in my power to place each of my 
Children in such of them as they might choose. Yet From the variety 
of different situations I have Experienced, and the many professions and 
Occupations with which I liave been acquainted, I have not discovered any 
other situation in wiiich I think I could make myself so Comfortable and 
happy as in the cultivation of a good Farm. * * • « * 

I was about to close this Letter, but several matters of family, police, 
and agricultural relations, which I wish you to attend to, occur to my 
mind. I have been apprehensive from the severity of the weather since I 
left home, that you Jiave not been able to compleat the plowing of the field 
assigned for planting Indian Corn the next spring. If that be the case, 
pray do not foil of Imbracing the first opportunity to Effect it. Whenever 
the frost and snow will permit, if in mid-winter, let the plough be going 
until it is accomplished. 


Be cautious of Cutting any Green Wood for the fires, if tlic winter will 
permit you to do otherwise, if not, select those Trees which are on the 
decay in the back Thicket. Let your wood be cut at the door, for sum- 
mer, and neatly piled up. Sec that all tlie Husbandry Tools are kept 
under cover in their proper places, when they are not in use. Thrash the 
Grain as soon as posisible and have it secured in Casks in the Corn barn. 
Dress out the flax before spring work shall Interfere. You will keep the 
doors, and the passages for water about the House, clear of Snow. Make 
a point of keeping all the windows of the House fastened down. Bolt all 
the doors, and lock the Corn barn every night. I hope you will be scru- 
pulously attentive to the fires, see them properly Extinguished every night 
before you retire. Keep the Children at school ; take them to Meeting as 
constant as the weather will permit. Minute your accounts in the day 
Book every Evening. Keep a Cash account of the money you receive & 
pay away. And I do Conjure you to be particularly kind and attentive 
to your Mam'm, and let all other kinds of business give way, when you 
can thereby become Subservient to her wishes, Comfort, or happiness."* 

His sons were kept on the home acres until fully of age, 
when their father's influence and their own sturdiness advanced 
them to more advantageous and lucrative positions. The 
youngest, Benjamin Franklin, by agreement, remained with 
his parents until their deaths, and received the larger share of 
the landed estate. 


He early imbibed a taste for military life. At sixteen years 
of age, when "in 1767 the British troops were transported 
hither with an avowed design of enforcing sitbmission to the 
mother country, he visited said troops in Boston from day to 
da)', with a view to acquire a knowledge of military tactics 
and discipline to better enable himself to become usefid in the 
defence and in anticipation of the Independence of his coun- 

* Letter in possession of John M. Varnum. 


"Previous to the war with the mother country, there was 
one military company in Dracutt, but not under any recognized 
authority, nor tactical instruction. The Boston Massacre in 
1770 aroused and fired a latent spirit of the Love of Liberty 
and Independence in the old Town, and soon after the Massa- 
cre, there were formed two volunteer companies. One of these 
included about 70 men, and organized itself similar to the com- 
panies under the Koyal Government. This Company unani- 
mously chose Joseph B. Yarnum for their Captain. The 
Train Band included men from 15 years of age upward. This 
Band met frequently, and made much progress, until Decem- 
ber, 1771, when the Provincial Congress decided to enlist 
12,000 men to act as Minute Men under any particular emer- 
gency. The Train Band then reorganized with Stephen Russell 
as Captain; Simon Coburn as Lieutenant; Abraham Coburn 
as Ensign, older men, but retained young Yarnum as Instructor 
both to themselves and the militia under their command, in 
which capacity he continued to serve until the commencement 
of the Kevolutionary AYar." He marched with said Company 
under Capt. Russell to the tight at Lexington. On Jan. 1, 
1776, there was a reorganization of the militia, and Yarnum 
was chosen Captain of the Dracutt companies of Minute Men 
and was accepted, and received his commission from the Bay 
State Council dated 31st of May, 1776.* He held command 
of this Company until the 4th day of April, 1787. 

Upon Capt. Yarnum devolved the duty of keeping up the 
quota of requisition for men from his town, and he " never failed 
in a single instance." In this capacity he was of signally effi- 
cient service to the cause. The Continental Congress was 
continually calling on the thirteen States for men. None could 
or would enlist beyond a few months. Even at the siege of 
Boston, the Connecticut troops, their terms of enlistment ex- 

• Mass. Muster Rolls, Vol. xli. 155. 


piring, refused to serve unless they were promised bounty, and 
many returned home because they were so refused, as no 
authority had been granted by the Continental Congress in the 

Capt. Varnum was drawn with his Command, 29 Sept., 1777 ; 
and marched to " reinforce ye ISTorthern Army," and had " the 
consolation of seeing a whole British Army with Burgoyne at 
their head, march from the heights, music beating a retreat, 
ujjon the plains of Saratoga." 

John Yarnum in his Journal says, 

"27 Sept 1777, Orders came for 1-2 of ye able bodied officers and 
soldiers immediately to march to Tyconderoga." 

"29 Sept., Capt. Joseph Bradley Varnum was drawn with 40 men to 
march to ye Westward." 

" 1 Oct., Capt. Varnum and his Company tarried until afternoon wait- 
ing for horses." 

"2 Oct., The Company marched early in ye morning." 

" 12 Oct., Had news that our people had arrived safely to Bennington." 

"16 Oct., Old ISlr. Davis came home from the Army witli -ye horses 
that went with the last recruits. Brought word that our friends was all 
well, in high spirits, that Burgoyne's Army was retreating, our Army 
harrassing them giving battle. Got many advantages greatly emban-assing 
Burgoyne's Retreat." 

"Sunday, 20 Oct., 1777. Lt. Ephm : Coburn, Jona : Jones, & Dr. 
Abbot came home from ye Army. Confirmed the surprising account of 
ye Wonderful Victory over Burgoyne and his whole Army, being about 
7000 all taken, Surrendered to Gen. Gates and laid down their arms to 
us, resigned their public stores, that our Militia was conducting tliem to 
Boston, expecting they would be in this week. Mr. Davis preached an 
excellent sermon suitable to the occasion, from that part of the song of 
Moses where Pharaoh & his host were pursuing the children of Israel, 
'And God overthrew tliem in the Red Sea.'" 

"1 Nov., Jona : Parkhurst came home from ye Army, brings word that 
all is well. Zealous for a fifer & fiddler for the grand appearance the day 
that Burgoyne's Famous Army is to be brought in. A Wonderful Show, 



a day that our hearts should be employed to speak & live to the praise 
of God."* 

On the 29 July, 1778, Capt. Yarnum was drawn with his 
Company, and marched in Gen. Lowell's Brigade to Rhode 
Island, to join Gen. Sullivan who was acting in conjunction 
with the French fleet under Admiral D'Estaing in repelling 
the British. This expedition was unfortuuate in its results, as 
the fleet was scattered by a gale of wind, and the land force, 
after a sharp engagement, forced to retreat. Capt. Yaruum's 
Company lost one man killed, two wounded and one missing. 
The Company served out its term of enlistment at East Green- 
wich and Warwick.f 

• A Muster Roll of Capt: Joseph B. Varnums Company of Volunteers from Dracutt, in 
Colo : Jona : Reeds Regt., State of Massachusetts Bay, who marched and leinforced ye North- 
ern Army, according to A Resolve of the Great & General Court of that State 22 Sept. 1777. 

Da\'id Jones. 
Samuel Barron. 
William Abbott. 
Simeon Cobum. 
Leonard Cobum. 
Saml : Cobum. 
David Cobum. 
Saul Cobum. 
Reuben Cobum. 
Jona: Crosby. 
Moses Davis- 
David Fox. 
Zach : Goodhue. 
Bradley Varaum. 
(Military State Records of Massachusetts, Vol. liv. p. 4.5.) 
t Pay Roll of Capt. Joseph Bradley Vamum's Company, Colo : Mcintosh's Regt. Gen. 
Lovell's Brigade of Militia, &om the State of Massachusetts Bay on an expedition to Rhode 
Island, July & August, 1778. 

Joseph B. Vamum 
Temple Kindall 
Abraham Stickney 
John Bobbins 

Reuben Lewis. Saul Cobum. J ames Harvey. 

David Aston. Oliver Cobum. Paul HiU. 

Asa Spaulding. Ephm : Crosby. James Lewis. 

Wm Spaulding. Benj : Danfort.h Sam'l Coney. 

J. B. Vamum 


Ephm : Cobum 


Abijah Fox 


Jonas Vamum 


Jona : Jones 


Timo: Parker 


John Hancock 


David Trull 


Joshua PUlsbury 


Barzala Lue 


Dracutt, 23 Jan. 


Josiah Hildreth. 
Daniel Jaqueth. 
John Mears. 
Jona : Parkhurst. 
Ebenezer Sawyer. 
David Sawyer. 
David McLaughlin. 
Isaac Parker. 
Samuel Piper. 
Jona : Taylor. 
Thomas Taylor. 
Solomon Woods. 
John Woods. 
Peter Hazletine. 



Thompson Bacon. 
John Bowman. 
Jesse Auger. 
John Webber. 

JOSEPH B.: rrFTH geneeatiox. 


In the winter of 1786-7, Capt. Yanium, leaving the Senate 
Chamber of the General Court, where he represented Middle- 
sex County, marched with his Company to aid Gen. Benjamin 
Lincoln in quelling the Insurrection of Shays and others, in 
the western part of the State. While this was a short and 
bloodless campaign, it was a severe one, because of its being 
in the dead of winter. During this compaign. Gen. Lincoln 
found it necessary to send a post to the General Court at Bos- 
ton, to procure funds to pay the troops. lie selected Capt. 
Varnum who successfully performed the mission in three and 
one-half days, making a journey of 320 miles. For this he 
received from his commander the following letter of approval: 

"Pittsficld, 12 Feby., 1787. 
Sir : — The business for which troops were ordered out seems to be pretty 
much over. Your services will be important, and are much needed in the 
General Court. It is, therefore, my wish tliat you assign your Company 
to ye next officer and meet the assembly as soon as possible. Your ex- 
ample in turning out on this occasion meets the esteem of your Country 
and entitles you to its thanks. Mine you have most sincerely.* 
With Great esteem, I have the honor to be your ob't 

Servant, B. Lincoln." 

Jona : Heywood. 
Jesse Heywood. 
Oliver Bowers. 
Oliver Farmer. 
Jona: Botteys. 
Amos Bradley. 
Jesse Buttertield. 
Jeptha Coburn. 

Wm : Danforth. 
James Davis. 
Josiah Fletcher. 
Levi Fletcher. 
Edward Farmer. 
John Gordon. 
Eben ; JIuut. 
Jona : Hunt. 

John Perham. 
Wm : Parker. 
Chester Parker. 
Simeon Parker. 
John Shed. 
Jona : Woodward. 
Timo : Bancroft. 
Nat : Ingalls. 

Ebr : Leman. 
Jona : Foster. 
David Merrill. 
Jona : Dunn. 
Andrew Hall. 
John Thompson. 
G. Fhigg Lane. 
Thomas Goodwin. 
Abrahau Jaquith. 

Dracutt, 6 Oct. 1778. 

(Military State Records Massachusetts, Vol. liv, p. 22.) 
"Aug. 1778, Six men were drafted from the militia to go to ILL, viz: Oliver Bowers, 
Josiah Fletcher, Levi Fletcher, Jona: Dunn, Jesse Ileywood, Wm : Spaulding. Dr. John 
Beatty went as a volunteer and was chosen clerk of the Co. commanded by Capt. Joseph 
Bradley Varnum. The above named were drafted for six weeks, and were in an Engagement 
in R. I., in which one man from Capt. V's Co. was killed, two wounded and one missing." 
Hist, of Chelmsford, p. 181. 

• Letter in possession of John M. Varnum. 


He was chosen Colonel of the 7th Regt., 3d Division, Mass. 
Militia, in which he had served eleven years, and received his 
commission i April, 1787. He was a rigid and very successful 
disciplinarian and his regiment received high praise for its 
unexampled order and military spirit, at its first Muster in the 
autumn of 1787. 

On the 22 Nov., 1802, he was made Brigadier- General; and 
on 12 June, 1805, Major-General of the 3d Division of the Militia 
of the State. When he died, in 1821, he was the senior Major- 
General in service. This long term of over 45 years of active 
and continued service is unijaralleled in the history of military 
affairs in the State of Massachusetts. A part of it, from 1817 
to 1821, was after his retirement from national politics, when 
his influence from such a source availed him nothing, and after 
too, he had excited much hostility because of his support of the 
war of 1812, impopular in Massachusetts and throughout New 
England, which conduct was largely influential in his failing 
election for Governor in 1813.* 

The Adjutant-General's ofiice of the State of Massachusetts 
reports that ''under Act of Congress of 12 April, 1812, re- 
quiring the Commander-in-Chief to take effective measures for 
organizing the Militia, the Western Division of Massachusetts 
was oi'ganized under Maj :-General Jos : B. Yarnum, to con- 
sist of 3,145 men, including officers, to form two Brigades"; 
and the ^Yar Department at Washington has this record: " The 
name of Joseph Bradley Varnum appears with rank given as 
Major-General in the Caption of a Pay roll of Capt. John Reed's 
Company, 3d Mass. Militia, detailed under General Orders of 
6 Sept., 1814. This roU is dated Boston, Feb. 27, 1815, and is 
for the period from Sept. 11 to 13, 1814." Capt. Reed's com- 

• Strong, who had rendered himself peculiarly obnoxious to the Administration by refusing 
to call out the State's quota of Militia, received nearly .57,000 Totes, while Senator Varnum 
(the Republican candidate) received 43,000. (Adams Hist. U. S., Vol. vii., p. 60.) 


pany was serving under General Yarnum, who was detached 
Sept. 5, ISU. 

Gen. Varnum's Military Cojimissions. 

As Captain 10th Co., 7th Regiment, County of Middlesex, Massachusetts. 

From tlie Council, dated 31 ilay, 177G. 
As Captain 7 ill Ileginient. 

From John Hancock, Governor, dated 1 July, 1781. 
As Purchasing Commissary and Agent. 

From Oliver Phelps, Supt. of Purchases, dated 14 July, 1781. 
By authority of the General Court. 
As Colonel 7th Regiment, 3d Division, IMilitia of Massachusetts. 

From James Bowdoin, Governor, dated 4 April, 1787. 
As Brigadier-General, 2d Brigade, 3d Division, State Militia. 

From Caleb Strong, Governor, dated 22 Nov., 1802. 
As Major-General, 3d Division, State ililitia. 

From Caleb Strong, Governor, dated 12 June, 1805. 

Political Cakeek. 

The ^ew England States have generally been noted for a 
recognition of the ability and character of their sons in jDublic 
life, and for honoring them with long tenures of political office. 
INIr. Vai-num's entrance into State politics began in 1781, when 
he was thii'ty years of age, and from that time up to his death 
his was an active and prominent personality in State and Na- 
tional affairs. From 1781 to 1785 he represented his native 
town in the State Legislature. From 1786 to 179.5, and from 
1817, after the cessation of his Congressional career, up to 
1821, the year of his death, he was a Senator from Middlesex 
County. In 1795* he was elected a Rejiresentative from his 

• Ilildreth, History of the United States, vol. iii., p. 577, says : "Among the new members 
of the 4th Congress was Joseph Uradlcy Vamum of SInssaehusetts, who had defeated Sam- 
uel Dexter after a violent and protracted struggle." Mr. Dexter was an eminent lawyer, 
and became Secretary of the Treasury during a part of the administration of the elder Adams. 
He was a federalist and a supporter of the treaty of 1795 between the United States and 


District to the 4th National Congress at Philadelphia, and 
after the removal of the seat of Government was one of the 
first to sit as a member of the National House of Representa- 
tives at Washington. 

At the beginning of his Congressional career, Mr. Yarnum 
met with a rebuff which threatened to imiJeril his political life. 
Four memorials were presented to Congress from his District, 
impeaching his election, and demanding that he be regarded as 
ineligible to his seat as Representative. These protests were 
seized upon by his political opponents and made so much of 
that they seemed likely to cause him much trouble. It was 
alleged that inasmuch as he was one of the selectmen of Dra- 
cutt at the time of his election, he had allowed certain votes to 
be received and counted which were illegal if not fraudulent. 
At that period a citizen in order to qualify as a voter in Massa- 
chusetts, must be " possessed of 60£ in Real Estate or what 
was equivalent to 3£ yearly, in any property whatever." On 
Mr. Yarnum's own motion the memorials were referi-ed to the 
Committee on Elections. 

"When the matter finally came up, Mr. Yarnum being called 
upon to vindicate himself, said " he did not think it necessary 
to speak on the subject. It was not very pleasant to sit and 
hear gentlemen from his own State treat him with all possible 
pei'sonalities; but he would submit with patience." This man- 
ly position was characteristic of him, and won him the sympa- 
thy of the House. 

It came out in the investigation, and was a cause of ofience 
to the Memorialists, that the " people of Dracutt were so satis- 
fied as to give no information on the subject, and that the uni- 

Great Britain. This measure Oi the administration was very unpopular in Massachusetts. 
Mr. Varnum was a republican and opposed to the treaty. Apropos of the controversy, the Prov- 
idence, R. I., Journal of Sept. 19, 1795, under " Items from Salem, Mass.", published the follow- 
ing squib : " Should the treaty become the law of the land, the towns of Boston and Dracutt 
are determined to detach themselves from the Union, and form a mighty independent nation 
of themselves." 


vevsal respect for Mr. Yarnum where he lived, contradicted the 
old proverb that " a prophet is not without honor save in his 
own country." The report of the Committee was a complete 
vindication, and upset all the plans of the conspirators to ruin 
him. Tt.s Chairman reported that " no one of the 23laintifFs or 
their agent had ai)peared to prosecute the complaint; that the 
sitting member had evidence that the election in the town of 
Dracutt (the unlairness of which had been complained of) was 
conducted with justness and propriety, and though there had 
been some irregularities committed in other places, they were 
mostly owing to the misconduct of the petitioners, and that the 
conduct of the sitting member has been fair and honorable 
throughout the whole transaction. Your Committee are there- 
fore of the opinion that Joseph Bi'adley Varnum was duly 
elected, and that the charges against him are wholly un- 
founded." * 

xVfler the removal of the archives of the United States from 
Philadelphia, and the establishment of the Seat of Government 
at Washington, he continued to represent his District. In the 
Ninth Congress (1805-1807), he was a prominent candidate 
for the Speakership, receiving 21 votes, 57 being necessary to 
a choice. In the Tenth Congress (1807-1809), he was chosen, 
the vote being Yarnum 05. Nathaniel Macon, candidate for re- 
election, 45, scattering 9. This election resulted in overthi-o\v- 
ing the power of John Randolph, Speaker Yarnum ignoring 
his claim to the Chairmanship of the Committee of Ways and 
Means, which position carried with it the Icadershij) of the 

• Annals of Congress. Vol. v., pp. 368, ^69, 785, 789, 823, 838; vol. vi., pp. 1913, 1984, 
1985, 1987. 

t The schism which has taken place between the Northern and Southern Democrats, looks 
to me to be of such irreconcilable nature that it can never be healed. John Handolph and 
some of his friends lead the Southern Junto ; while Bidwell, Gen. Varnum, Crowninshield 
and Gen. Thomas appear to manage the Northern phalanx. Gen Varnum, he has styled 
" Sworn Interpreter of Presidential messages," itc. — Letter of Col. Hen Tallmadge in Life of 
Manasseh Cutler, page 327. 


Speaker A^arnura appointed, in his place George W. Campbell 
of Tennessee.* Concerning this important change, Hon. Albert 
Gallatin, then Secretai-y of the Treasury, wrote : " Yarnum, 
much against my wishes, has removed Randolph from Ways 
and Cleans and appointed Campbell of Tennessee. It was im- 
proper as to public business, and will give me additional la- 
bor." t Randolj)h's acerbity ot temper and bullying disposition 
had made him unbeai-able, and this change, if it did not expe- 
dite business, at least created harmony. In the 11th Congress 
(1809-11), Speaker Varnum received the compliment of a 
reelection, the vote being Yariuim 59, Goldsborough 17, Bas- 
sett 17, scattering 21. 

On the question of Direct Taxes, Mr. Yarnum made in Jan., 
1797, a long and able speech. It is full of statistics taken from 
Goverument reports, and does him great credit as a maiden 
effort. He said : " I am clearly of the opinion that any sums 
needed for defraying the expenses of the Government or for 
the payments of its just debts, ought to be raised by duties on 
imposts and excises. That is a method of taxation with which 
we are acquainted and which experience has taught us the 
operation ot, under this Govei'nment. There are almost insu- 
l^erable objections to a direct tax, and until all the objects of 
indirect taxation are exhausted I presume the Government will 
never adopt one.''! He argued fi'om figures taken from the 
annual reports of receipts and expenditures of the Ti-easury, 
that the proceeds from existing taxes would be commensurate 
with the demands of the Government for the ensuing four 
years. This doctrine was in unison with the political tenets 
of his party, and he consistently maintained it during his Con- 
gressional career. 

* Mr. Campbell became a member of the United States Senate, and took his seat the 
same session as Mr. Varnum (1811). In 1S14 he was appointed Secretary of the Treasury, 
by President Madison. 

t Adams' Gallatin, p. 363. 

X Annals of Congress, vol. vi., pp. 1879 to 1885. 


On the question of receiving the petition of certain manu- 
mitted slaves, whom parties had seized and sold ayain into 
slavery, but who had escaped and fled into Philadeli)hia where 
they had been held under the Fugitive Slave Act, and had 
prayed relief from Congress, Mr. Yarnum in Feb., 1797, said: 
"The Petitioners had received injur}' under a law of the United 
States (the Fugitive Act), and therefore had an undoubted 
right to the attention of the General Government. They de- 
clared themselves to be free, and he did not see any argument 
of force to convince the House that they were not. Surely it 
could not be said that color alone should designate them as 
slaves. To be deprived of liberty was moi-e important than to 
be dej)rived of propertj'." * 

On the question of striking out the clause relating to the 
puni.shment of persons found guilty of importation of slaves, 
insisted upon by the Southern members, Mr. Yarnum voted in 
the negative. He remarked that he "thought the Southei'n 
States wei'e in imminent danger from slaveiy. He recalled 
that he had heard a former member from the South compare 
that ])art of the Union to a bundle of combustibles which only 
needed a little fire to kindle a blaze which would consume 
them. He had often heard gentlemen from the South express 
this dread of the final ruin of that country from slavery." f 

These expressions of his sentiments on slavery tally with 
the tribute paid him by Henry Wilson in his " Rise and Fall 
of the Slave Power in America," who quotes him as an earnest 
opponent of the trafiic in human beings, and asserting it to be 
" equally criminal with the practice of the Algerines in carrying 
American citizens into slavery," which was a burning question 
in his day, and made the simile most caustic and Ibrcible. 
" Where there was a disposition to retain a part of our sjjccies 

• Benton's Debates of Congress, vol. ii., 60. 
t Annals of Congress, vol. xvi., 243. 


in slavery, there could uot be a proper respect for the rights of 

Such sentiments vv'ere I'ar in advance of the moi'als of the 
time. The conscience of the North was not generally sensitive 
on the subject of .slavery. It had not long disappeared in New 
England, and trade in slaves was winked at. In Dec, 1811, 
the brig "Saragossa," from Bristol, R. I., was underwritten in 
Boston, " at and from the leeward coast of Africa to Havana," 
in which policy it is stated, "The assurers are not liable for 
the mortality of the slaves, but take the risk of insurrection.'' f 

In May, 1798, on the question of a temporar^f Direct Tax, he 
made strong opposition, and said in reply to the ai'gument that 
the said tax might at any time be repealed. "Although this 
House might consent to a repeal of this tax, it was by no 
means certain that the other House would consent to it. 
Indeed it was his opinion that if this tax was established as a 
permanent one, that the people of this country would not be 
relieved from it for many years. Many objects, no doubt, 
would be found by gentlemen over fruitful in this respect, upon 
which to expend any surplus which might arise from it."J 

These were words of wisdom and foresight uttered on the 
threshold of our Nation's history, and the legislation in our 
Country proves their accuracy. It has taken years of deter- 
mined eifort to Avipe from our statute books laws or enactments 
made to fit peculiar exigencies, and Mr. Yarnum's prediction 
as to the bill referred to was a wise and sagacious warning. 

Again in June, 1798, on the question of Direct Taxes, he 
interposed his objections. He said he "had always thought, 
since the establislinient of our Government, that there should 
be no necessity for I'csorting to direct taxes, except in case of 
our being engaged in war ; but he now believed a majority of 

• WUsoii, vol. i., 36. 

t Original in possession of John M. Varnum. 

J Benton's Debates, toI. ii., 272. 


the Government of the United States are determined on wai-, 
and he would on that account have given his vote for the bill, 
if the tax proposed was to be laid on just and equitable j)riii- 

Party lines were strongly drawn in the early daj's of the Re- 
public, and in !March, 18U2, the repealing of the Act of 1801 
relating to the Judiciary was made an issue between the Re- 
publicans and Fedei-alists.y Adams sa3's, that the fear was 
that the Federalists, who had found the courts favorite places 
for their patronage and the setting forth of their theories as to 
government, would gain great advantage in the jiromulgation 
of their views through decisions. He asserts that Joseph Story, 
a republican, was elevated to the bench of the U. S. Supreme 
Court to offset the influence of John IMarshall the Chief Justice.J 
In the debate, Mr. ^"arnum made a lengthy argument as to 
the right of Congress under the Constitution to repeal the Act 
creating the Court. It occupies many pages of the Annals, 
and is a strong exposition of his views. In his speech he pays 
this fine tribute to the judicial system of his State: " There has 
never been a Court of the United States of which the Judges 
possessed more eminence of character, ability, law-knowledge, 
impartiality, correctness of decision, and moral principle, than 
has adorned the Bench of the Supreme Judicial Court of Mas- 
sachusetts from its first establishment under the present State 
Constitution up to the present time. "§ 

In the Committee of the whole in the debate on the Act ei'cct- 
ing Louisiana into two Territories and providing for the tem- 

• Bcnton'3 Debates, vol. ii., 304. 

t" The Republicans were strict constructionists of the Constitution, narrowing down powers 
of the Federal Government to the express and exact terms of that insti'ument, while the Fed- 
eralists claimed a broader and more liberal exposition in favor of the States. The opposition 
between these parties was the strength of State Sovereignty against Federal Sovcreigniv." — 
Life of Joseph Storv, Vol. I., pp. 276-277. 

+ Adams' Hist. U. S., Vol. I., p. 260. 

{ Annals of Congress, Vol. XI., pp. 1)71 to 981. 


porary government thereof, Mr. Yarnum was in advance of 
his party, and took sti'ong ground as to the rights of the people. 
Adams says "Yarnum of Massachusetts denounced the whole 
S3'stcm, and demanded an elective legislature."* In February, 
ISOi, he said, " 1 am of opinion that the bill provides such 
a kind of government as never has been known in the 
United States. Sound policy, no less than justice, dictates the 
propriety of making provision for the election of a legislative 
body by the people. There is not only the common obligation 
of justice imposed on Congress to do this, but it is bound to do 
so by treaty. This treaty (with France) makes it obligatory to 
admit the inhabitants of Louisiana as soon as possible to the 
enjoyment of all the rights, privileges, advantages and immu- 
nities of citizens of the United States. " He moved the refer- 
ence to a select conmiittee to so modify the act. Mr. Speaker 
Macon strongly supported Mr. Yarnum in his views.f 

On the question of Revolutionary Pensions, Mr. Yarnum, in 
Dec, 1805, said that "during the late Revolutionary War with 
Great Britain, the Government of the United States thought 
proper to place on the Pension list, certain oflBcers and soldiers 
who had been wounded or disabled in the war. It had so 
happened from a variety of circumstances, that a large number 
of our meritorious officers and soldiers of this description had 
not been on the list. A number of them had kept back and 
omitted to reap the benefit of the provision, under the expec- 
tancy of supporting themselves by their own industry or 
through the assistance of friends. He believed that many had 
been jirompted to do this bj^ the most laudable of motives. 
Many of them had since 'found themselves unable to earn a de- 
cent subsistence. A number of petitions of this kind had this 
morning been leferred to the Committee on Claims, and Mr. 

* Adams' Hist. V. S., Vol. II., p. 123. 
t Benton's Debates, Vol. IH., p. 144. 


Tni-niim said that it was his wish that a general and am])lc 
provision should be made for all who had been disabled. The 
Independence and happy situation of our country were owing 
to their exertions, and our wealth now enables us to make gen- 
erous provision for their future comfort and welfare. He there- 
fore moved that the Committee on Claims be instructed to en- 
quire what further measures are necessary to be adopted to 
remunerate the meritorious officers and soldiers who were 
wounded or disabled in the Kevolutionary war with Great 
Britain, with leave to report by bill or otherwise."* 

The offering of this motion was a peculiarly gratifying act 
to Mr. Yarnum, who himself a patriot of the Revolution, felt 
deeply for those whose pride had kept them from receiving the 
bounty of the Government and for whose relief a special enact- 
ment was necessary. 

In January, 1808, a bill was under consideration by the 
Committee on the Whole in the House, "to provide more 
effectually for the national defence by the Militia of the United 

It authorized the President, on the appearance of national 
danger, to order out the militia of the United States, to be 
known as the "Junior class of INIilitia." This ])ill was a pecu- 
liarly obnoxious one to Mr. \'arnum, who thoroughly acquainted 
with the militia system from experience and practice, being at 
the time a ^rajor-General of the Militia of the State of Massa- 
chusetts, and having been an ofHcer in continuous service from 
177G, saw clearly the shortcomings and defects of the measure 
and its utter impi-acticability. There was no man more com- 
petent to throw light on such a question than himself, and his 
words on this and a subsequent occasion, on a bill of similar 
import in the Senate, cai-ried a conviction which led to its de- 
feat. Mr. Varnum (Speaker) said "he hoped the committee 

• Annals of Congress, vol. xt., 267. 


would rise, and be refused leave to sit again on this bill. He 
believed that the situation of the United States at present 
would by no means admit of the classification of the militia. 
If ever it was necessary this is not the proper time. It had 
been said that the classing had been recommended by the seve- 
ral Presidents of the United States. If that is a fact it was 
not known to him. He could see no kind of advantage to be 
derived from the proposed modification of the militia sj'stem. 
Were not the militia, under the present laws, equal to any 
service which could be required of them ? If particular States 
had failed to carry into effect the part assigned them by the 
Constitution, would any other plan induce them to attend to 
it? It was a fact that where State Governments had taken up 
the subject of the organization and discipline of the Militia and 
carried it into effect as far as in their power, those States had 
a respectable body of militia, from 18 to 45 years in age, 
banded together as brothers in arms, and they from their disci- 
pline, would regard it as an invidious distinction if men at 
particular ages were selected from the mass, and thus destroy 
the present etficiency. He was aware that it has been said 
that the militia was inefficient in some parts of the United 
States. What was lacking, was that subordination which ex- 
isted in other sections, and nothing more." 

"It has been said that in the course of the Revolutionary 
war the militia in some instance abandoned their posts; but he 
was sure that the credit due to the militia of his part of the 
countiy had not been awarded. In some of the hardest battles 
of the war the principal actors were the militia. There is a 
radical difficulty in the system proposed. The bill provides 
that none shall be called into general service except those from 
21 to 26 years of age. Is it expected that young men will be 
better able to perform military duty than those who have be- 
come veterans in the service, who have experienced the advau- 


tages of Iibert3% and who have families and property to defend? 
The Constitutions of some of the States provide that the Cap- 
tain and Subaltern of each Company shall be chosen from the 
Avholc Cam[)any from the ag-e of 21 to 45. The officers would 
genei-ally be over 46 years of age. The practice is at variance 
with this bill." 

" Gentlemen may suppose that it is an easy thing for the 
State Governments to alter their systems to conform to the 
requirements of the General Government ; but it is a matter 
which some States will not do. The militia at the present 
time in some parts of the United States are well organized and 
disciplined, and display a spirit of emulation which does them 
honor. In the State he had the honor to represent, there are 
70,000 militia, all fully armed and accoutred. They are indi- 
vidually subject to a fine of $8.00 foi- every time they appear 
without arms, and if not always provided, to a fine of $10 00 
per annum. This severe regulation results in universal arming. 
Very few troops, take them from what part of the world you 
will, are better disciplined than our companies of artillery, 
every man of which is completely uniformed at his own ex- 
pense, and every company of which is supplied with brass field 
pieces, of which they have 150. The whole body of militia 
would be ready to march, if called npon, in 12 hours notice, 
and under ofiicers of their own choice would go into service 
with alacrity. They would consider it a hardship to see their 
younger comrades called into a State which did not happen to 
adjoin their own while they could not march to assist, as this 
bill provides that men between 26 and 45 shall go no farther 
than the border of their own or an adjoining State. If an ene- 
my were to land in Connecticut the brave militia of New 
Hampshire or Vermont are not to assist in repelling them be- 
cause the said States are not adjoining. It is the flower of the 
militia which is to be .slaughtered, instead of repelling the ene- 


my by the whole force of the body. Every man capable of 
bearhig arms should be called upon to take part in the defence 
of his neighborhood, when invaded. It was felt to be a hard- 
ship in the time of the Revolutionary war that every man capa- 
ble of bearing arms should be compelled to do his part, scarcely 
a man being left to till the ground ; but it was essential to the 
safety of the country. Have we increased to such a degree of 
population that we can aflord to now leave at home three- 
fourths of our able bodied men ?" 

" This bill embodies a system which has many times been be- 
fore the House for consideration, and has always been found 
impolitic to adopt. I hope at this critical juncture that we shall 
not wholly disorganize the militia because some persons do not 
choose to submit to military discipline and the subordination 
essential thereto. I am ready to assert that if the system is 
adopted, that our militia will be broken up, as the States have 
laws now in force in conformity with the Act of 1792 for the 
organization of the militia, and under said laws are ready to 

Later, in the same month, the subject was again under dis- 
cussion, and the Annals state, " Mr. Yarnum opposed the bill 
with considerable spirit and force." f The result finally was 
that the measure died in the hands of the Committee, probably 
because its advocates Avere at last brought to see its inutility. 
It may be that the results of these early efforts of the General 
Government to enact laws to gain control over the militia of 
the several States led to the final abandonment of the subject. 
The General Government has never exercised control over the 
militia of the States, always making its requisitions, in case 
of war, through the governors. Even in the war of 1812, the 
Governor of the State of Massachusetts (Strong) refused to 

* Annals of Congress, vol. xviii, 1484-5-6. 
+ Annals of Congress, toI. xviii., p. 1508. 



acquiesce in the requisition of the President of the United 
States (Monroe). 

The speech just quoted was the last appearance of Speaker 
Varnuna on the floor of the House, and he spoke onl}^ on this 
occasion, in Committee of the Whole, to discuss a matter dear 
to his heart, as he was an active participant in the military 
affairs of the State he had the honor to represent, and from the 
inception of its military system had been its able exponent. 

The State election in Massachusetts in 1808 resulted in the 
choice of Christopher Gore as Governor. Gen. Yarnum was 
one of the candidates of the liepublicans ; the defeated ticket 
being Levi Lincoln of Worcester (afterwards elected Gover- 
nor) , and Joseph Bradley Yarnum of Dracutt, Lieut. Governor.* 
The campaign of 1811 yielded a very important triumph for 
the party to which Gen. Yarnum belonged. It had several 
times elected its candidate for Governor, but had failed to gain 
full control of the Legislature. In 1810 it elected Elbridge 
Gerry as Governor and a majority of Representatives, but 
lacked one vote of control of the Senate. The election of 1811 
gave a majority of 10 in the House and secured the election 
of its candidate (Joseph Story) for Speaker and the one lack- 
ing vote in the Senate. 

" This triumph was indeed a i-eal one, for it enabled the 
Republicans to send Speaker Yarnum to the Senate of the 

• The official returns in State Archives of this election are: — 

Gore for Governor 47,916 

Lincoln for " 45,178 

Varnom for Lieutenant Governor . . , 44,729 

Cobb " " " . . . . 47,040 

Necessary to choice . , 46,662 

As an evidence of the virulence of politics of those days the following copied from the 
Columbian Centinel, April 1st, 1808, is in evidence: "The Revd Clergy or the Deacons of the 
two religious societies in the Town of Worcester are invited and requested to certify from 
the best evidence they can obtain, how many times the new Democratic Candidate for Gov- 
ernor entered either of the houses of worship on the Lord's day, from Jan. 1, 1797, to Jan. 1, 
1808, making a period of 10 years and including 520 Sabbaths." 


United States in jjlaee of Timothy Pickering, whose term had 
expired, and at a critical moment of our history made Massa- 
chusetts a Republican State."* 

Joseph Story, Speaker of the House of Representatives of 
Massachusetts, and aftei'wards Justice of the United States 
Supreme Court, wrote May 7, 1810, of this contest : " In the 
gloi-ious struggles of the Republicans I have not been an in- 
different spectator, and I now have the right to rejoice in the 
honorable triumph they have achieved against intrigue, influence 
and wealth. We shall elect a Senator in tlie place of Mr. Pick- 
ering or at least (if the Senate do not concur) we shall save 
our State from being misrepresented. Let us enjoy the pres- 
ent moment, and with sincere congratulation 'pursue the tri- 
umph and partake the gale.' "f 

In the Senate Gen. Varnum was made chairman of the Com- 
mittee on Military Affairs. During his term as Senator (1813) 
he became the candidate of the Republican party and received 
the nomination of Governor of his State against Caleb Strong, 
who represented the anti-war element.J This campaign and 

• MacMaster's History of the People of the TJ. S., voL iii., pp. 422-423. 
t Story : Life and Letters, vol. i, 198. 

J The election for Governor was held April 15, 1813. The Kepublican banner bore the 
inscription : 

Free Trade & No Impressment. 

American Republican Candidates. 


for Governor 


for Lieut. Governor 
of Massachusetts for the ensuing year. 
The vote stood: Strong, 56,463 ; Varnum, 42,789 ; necessary to choice, 45,670. 
A doggerel of this campaign ran as follows : 

" Let peace and commerce flourish long, 
I give my vote for Caleb Strong ; 
But those who wish for war and tax, 
Oh, darn 'um ! 
Let 'em vote for Gen. Varnum." 


that of Lieut. Governor in 1808, resulted in the only two de- 
I'eats of his political career. 

Adams says: "Of all supporters of the war (1812) Senator 
Yarnuni was one of the steadiest, lie was also the highest 
authority in the Senate on matters pertaining to the militia. 
When Giles's bill came under discussion (Nov. Gth, 18J1:), 
Yarnum began the debate with a speech vehemently hostile to 
the proposed legislation."* He said: "I am deeply impressed 
with the importance of the present crisis of our national con- 
cerns, and the necessity for the adoption of strong and ener- 
getic measures calculated to meet and repulse the force which 
the enemy contemplate placing in the lield against us. No 
man in this Senate will go forther than I shall feel disposed to 
go, to etfect the object which is dear to eveiy friend of the 
nation, provided the measures pursued shall appear to me 
founded in justice and equity." 

He first objected that "although the bill purported to call 
for an army of 80,000 men, yet in some of the subsequent sec- 
tions of it we find that instead of realizing the pleasing jjros- 
pect of seeing an ample force in the field, said force is to be 
reduced indefinitely, which contradiction in terms, inconsis- 
tency in principle and uncertainty in effect, cannot fail to pro- 
duce mortiiication and chagrin." He objected to drafting men 
from the militia for two years service, " because the principle 
of nine months service was already established by common 
law. If the nation wants a regular force, why not make it a 
part of the regular army, without a system of militia drafting, 
unnecessary, unequal, and unjust. The machinery of classifi- 
cation and draft is wholly inqjracticable. The limit of service 
to adjoining States, abandoned the objects for which the Union 
existed. The proffered bounties would ruin the recruiting 
service for the regular army. The proposed exemptions and 

• Adams's History of the United States, vol. viii., pp. 269, 270. 


deductions in terms of duty, left no permanency to the service. 
The bill inflicted no penalties, and charged no officers with the 
duty of making the draft. I consider the whole system as re- 
solving into a recommendation upon the patriotism of the 
States and Territories and upon the i:)atriotism of the classes."* 

" The justice of Yarnum's criticism could not faii'ly be ques- 
tioned," Mr. Adams concludes.f This view was supported by 
Senator Daggett of Connecticut, who immediately followed 
Mr. Yarnum, and b}' Jeremiah Mason of New Hampshire, " a 
man second to no one in legal ability or in personal authority." 
Senator Christopher Gore, formerl}' Governor of Massachu- 
setts, although opposed to Mr. Yarnum in politics, supported 
him in opposition to the bill. 

Formerly the office of Pi-esident pro tern of the United States 
Senate was held to be a very important position, made especi- 
ally so by its relation to the Presidential office. In Dec, 1813, 
Senator Yarnum was chosen to preside over this body, and 
after the expiration of his term was repeatedly chosen as Chaii-- 
man of the Committee of the Whole. At the close of his career 
as Senator from Massachusetts, when the overthrow of his 
party had ended his congressional services, his constituency 
thought him too able and sound a counsellor to relegate to 
private life, and from the successive years of 1817 to 1821, the 
close of his life, he represented them in the Senate of the State 
of Massachusetts. 

He was a member of two important Conventions in his State: 
that of 1787, to ratify the Federal Constitution ; and that of 
1820, to revise the State Constitution. Over the latter he was 
the main presiding officer. President John Adams and Chief 
Justice Parker, the regularly chosen Presidents, being unable to 
perform their duties, the former declining the honor because 

* Annals of Congress, toI. xxviii., pp. 58-69. 

t Adams's History of the United States, vol. Tiii., p. 270. 


of enfeebled age, and the latter being unable to actively serve 
because of ill health. Gen. Yai'nuni's weight of character and 
great experience as a legislator gave him a very important 
standing in this Convention. He was made Chairman in the 
Committee of the Whole, and that of the Militia. On questions 
of parliamentary law and methods of proceedure, he was con- 
stantly appealed to, and his decision went without debate. 
The deference paid him, and the high honor of being selected 
and presented to the Convention by Chief Justice Parker, as 
President pro tern, who spoke of him as one "whose long pub- 
lic services in high stations, and whose able exertions in the 
Convention, entitled him to the respect of his country," was ex- 
ceedingly gratifying to his feelings. In a letter wi'itten at 
that time to his wife, he says, of the high esteem shown him 
by members : 

My dear Wife : 

"Boston, Dec. 2a, 1820. 

I JKive reall}' been iiuicii disappointed since I came hero. I did ex- 
pect tliat the old frowns of Federalism would be poured down upon me 
in Torrents ; but from some Observations which I made in regard to the 
liules of proceedure in the Convention, and my Presidency in the Chair 
since, wiien in Committee of the Whole, seems to have eradicated every 
Idea of party prejudice in regard to me, and I am now hailed as the Suni- 
nium bonum of Order in the Convention. Many gentlemen have declared 
to me that tiiey had been impressed with an Idea that I was opposed to 
principles of order and good Government ; but that they had found out 
tlieir mistake, and now all parties eulogize me as holding principles of 
correct intention."* 

He appears to have made no lengthy remarks in the Con- 
vention, except on the matter of religious toleration. This 
came up in the debate on incorporating denominational I'eligious 

* Letter in possession of John M.Vurnum. 


societies. Gen. Variium said, " if he had not been assigned to 
a duty which was incompatible with his taking any part in the 
debate, he would not have had occasion to detain the Conven- 
tion at this late period. He would make no profession as to his 
regard for religion : his conduct would speak for itself ; nor 
would he make any invidious distinctions between different sects 
or denominations. He would wish all to live in fellowship so 
far as their principles were consistent with pure morality and 
the good of society. He wished the gentlemen would unite 
and adopt something which Avould give satisfaction to the de- 
nominations. For this purpose he hoped they would do away 
with all technical difficulties, and gave a full discussion to the 
subject before the Convention. It was a matter dear to the 
people at large, and they counted upon its being fully deliberated 
upon. It was for the benefit of all interested that we should 
act with such a spirit of conciliation as all might go home satis- 
fied. We all agree until we come to the difficulties arising from 
differences of sects and denominations. He wished that every- 
thing like discrimination might be done away with, and we come 
together like brothers. It has been decided by the Supreme 
Court that before the law of 1811, no society was within the 
meaning of the article unless it was incorporated. It has been 
the practice to tax every person in the parish where he lived in 
disregard of what he might ]3ay for the support of his own re- 
ligious teacher. After burdening the Parishes with collecting 
ministerial taxes assessed on them from persons belonging to 
other Societies, it was often necessary to restore the money to 
the religious teacher to whom it justly belonged. He contended 
that every person should be taxed only by his own denomination, 
and that the Parish ought not to be put to the trouble of lev^dng 
and collecting a tax nor a religious teacher nor the person pay- 
ing it, the trouble of getting the money back. He was aston- 
ished that so many gentlemen from the Town of Boston were 


opposed to everything that gives religions toleration. He was 
never better pleased than when the honorable Chief Justice, his 
associate in the chair, the other day came forward and in so 
manly a manner, advocated the rights of conscience and of 
private judgment in matters of faith and worship. He thought 
that everything like an intolerant spirit in religion was fast pas- 
sing awa}^ and he trusted that before long men of all denomi- 
nations would be willing to worship together. He wished to 
promote this harmonious spirit, and to adopt a principle which 
would permit men of all beliefs to retii-e from this Convention 
satisfied with a work well done and one broadly promoting the 
cause of Christian fellowship."* 

This speech from General Varnum, who was brought up un- 
der the tenets of New England Congregationalism, and be- 
came in his later years a Baptist, distinguishes him as a man of 
very advanced liberalism, broad and catholic in his convictions,, 
and remarkably progressive for his day. 

His Political Commissions. 

State of Massachusetts. House, - from 1781 to 1786. 

" " " Senate - .. ^786 to 1795. 

oenaie, ^ 1817 to 1821. 

National Congress. House, - - " 179.5 to 1811. 

Speaker of, - " 1807 to 1811. 

" " Senate, - - " 1811 to 1817. 

" " Frea. pro tem of, 1813. 

State of Massachusetts. Convention to ratify Federal Constitution, 1787. 

Delegate to Convention to amend State Constitution, 1820. 

His Civil Commissions. 
Justice of Peace and (Juorura - from 1787 to 1818. 
Chief .Justice, Court of Sessions,! " 1X07 to 1811. 
Member of Governor's Council, 1787, 1792. 

SheriiF of Middlesex Co. (declined), 1794. 

• Debates, Massachusetts Convention, 1820, pp. ofi2. .563. 

t Established 3 .Tuly, 1782, ■' To hear and determine all matters relating to the conservation 
of the Peace, cognizable by them at common law." An amendatory Act of 19. Tune, 1807. 
provided for a Chief Justice and a number of Associate Justices throughout the Slate. 

214 varnum genealogy. 


John Randolph, who was never so happy as when imputing 
base motives to his political opponents, and whose sharp tongue 
was dreaded by all his associates in Congress, in the debate on 
Spanish affairs in the house, 7th April; 1806, charged Gen. 
Varnum as being the author of certain expressions and opinions 
as to President Jefferson, asserting that he "seemed thunder- 
struck and humbled " at the charge. " As to being humbled," 
replied Gen. Yarnum, " I have never felt humbled by any man. 
I have never yet felt nor shall feel afraid of the face of mortal 
man. I have been many years in the service of my country, 
and I have never heard any argument that I was unwilling to 
meet, if it was worthy answer. 1 have done my duty uncon- 
scious of injury to any man." * 

This incident illustrates the type of character of Gen. Varnum. 
He was fearless and independent. Throughout his whole 
political career there is no evidence that he lacked the cour- 
age of his convictions. He stood manfully up in maintenance 
of the right of petition in the case of manumitted slaves in 
the national Congress at Philadelphia in 1797, and for the free- 
dom of religious thought in 1820, in the Massachusetts Con- 
stitutional Convention. Throughout his whole career he was 
strong and sturdy as a leader of his party, when Massachusetts 
and Maine were one political community, and was a consistent 
Republican, even when supporting the war of 1812, an un- 
popular measure in his section. 

In 1809, when he was the nominee of his party for the office 
of Lieutenant-Governor with Levi Lincoln of Worcester as the 
candidate for Governor, he reluctantly permitted the use of his 
name, and only consented because of party fealty. His letters 
at that date show that he did not anticipate success ; moreover, 
his position as Speaker of the jSTational House was a congenial 

•Annals of Congress, vol, xx, pp. 987, 988. 


one, and he had nothing to gain by i-esigning it.* The Boston 
Patriot of Mar. 21st, 1809, said of him, " Gen. Yarnnm has 
spent the chief part of a laborions life in the public service. He 
is a farmer; a statesman and a soldier; of such estimation at 
Washington, that he was recently elevated by that august body, 
the House of Representatives, to the Speakership — a situation 
honorable to the country which has been so long distinguished 
by his useful services. " 

♦ As a farmer he was so devoted to that pursuit, that he was 
ever speaking in its praise to his sons, as a vocation, and eulo- 
gizing it as the choicest, most honorable and most satisfying of 
occupations. His ancestors had been large, original land 
owners. in Dracutt, and although his military and political life 
had led him into other and varied activities, he still clung to 
the arduous life and labor of a farmer. He well knew the hard- 
ship of it, for he says in his autobiography, " With his^wn 
hands he laid miles of stone Avail," to enclose his acres. 

It was a tribute to his personal worth, that as a Kcpublican, 
and a leader of his party, he had the close confidence and es- 
teem of the illusti-ious Jefferson. His relations with the elder 
Adams, Jc'fferson, Gallatin, Gerry, Granger, and other famous 
statesmen in the early history of our country, is attested by let- 
ters from them, carefully preserved by his descendants. One 
from John Adams, of 19 closely written pages, is alluded to by 
Joseph Story, at that date a member of Congress from Massa- 
chusetts : 

" Wasiiinjrton, Jan. 14, 1809. 

President Adams has written a very long letter to Gen. Varnuni on our 

national atikirs. He speaks in great approbation of the Administration, 

and goes tiic whole length in vindication of our national rights. I assure 

you that I read this letter with the greatest delight, and regretted that for 

• Nathaniel Macon of Georgia, who waa a candidate for Speaker with Gen. Varnum in the 
contest in 1809, said in withdrawing his name, "I regard the office of Speaker of the House 
one of the most honorable in the nation — perhaps none were mare so after that of the Presi- 
dent and Vice-President. " Macon was Speaker 1807— 1809. 


a moment, I had ever doubted his patriotism. The letter would do honor 
to any man living. "* 

111 personal appearance, Gen. Yarnum was a man somewhat 
inclined to corpulency; of about the average height, having a 
light complexion, with dark blue eyes. The portrait accompa- 
nying this sketch has been pronounced by those who knew him 
in life, to be a very accurate likeness, and to convey a just im- 
pression of his personal appearance. His mental powei's were 
of the highest order. He was a man of uncommon accuracy 
of judgment, and his opinions were given with promptitude. 
He was regarded as ■' the most distinguished man of his time 
in the Merrimack river valley. " His republican simplicity was 
pronounced. He would wear no clothing of foreign manufac- 
ture. His appai'cl was of homespun, prepared by his wife on 
her loom at the homestead farm. Some years before 1790, one 
Ezekiel Hale came to Dracutt and engaged in business at 
Beaver brook — that of fulling, dyeing and dressing the home- 
spun cloth made in the farmers' famiUes. In 1810, Mr. Hale 
made a bolt of his finest cloth, and presented it to Gen. Varnum, 
who had it made into a suit of clothes, which he proudly wore 
as he sat as Speaker of the l^ational House at \Vashington. 

On the 4th of March, 1817, his term as Senator ended, and 
with it his congressional career. A letter to his wife describes 
his relief at laying down the cares and duties of his long ser- 
vice : 

♦'Washington, Dec. 28, 1816. 
My dear Wife. 

With consolation, satisfaction and gratitude, I antici- 
pate the fourth of March next, which will free me from the solicitude of 
serving my country in situations which have compelled me, for a consider- 
able part of the time each year for thirty-seven years past, to abandon the 
enjoyment of domestic happiness, "f 

• Story, Life and Letters, A\>1, 1, p. 192. 
f In possession of John M. Varnum. 


On his i-etirement to his home farm, his active political life 
did not end. He was elected Senator from jSIiddlesex Connty 
to the Legislature of Massachusetts in 1817; and was a mem- 
ber at time of his decease in 1821. He was Senior Maj. General 
in the military service of his State. He was chosen a delegate 
to the Convention for the revision of the Constitution of the 
State in 1820. 

He passed away on the 11th Sept., 1821, from a sudden at- 
tack of angina pectoris. His son Benj. F. made this entry in 
his Journal, the month previous: "Father instructed me in 
case he should suddenly be taken away, to have a common cof- 
fin with a box, and no parade of military, and to purchase and 
hoist a black flag at halfmast. " 

His decease was sudden. He rode out on the day preceding 
it, but being indisposed speedily returned, and found his disso- 
lution rapidly approaching. He called his family around him, 
acquainted them with his situation, gave directions that his fu- 
neral might not be attended with any military or civic parade, 
appointed his pall bearers and calmly awaited the final sum- 

From the house to the little burial ground where his body 
has its last resting place, is but a step. There were no car- 
riages, only a procession on foot, the coffin f)n a bier, borne by 
the pall bearers, followed by the family and those who came to 
pav the last tribute. 

The Cohnnhian Centiad of Sept. 1.5, 1821, said of him: "In 
all the offices he held, Gen. Yainum exhil)ited an assiduity 
which never tired, and an integrity above suspicion. Though 
of late years he differed on some points of political economy, 
from the majority of his fellow-citizens of the State, it may 
with truth and justice be affirmed that at his death, Massachu- 
setts did not contain a more honest or independent man." 


B[j John M. Varnum. 

These records would not be complete without appropriate tes- 
timony as to Silas Royal, the faithful and loyal black servant 
of Gen. Joseph Bradley Varnum, who lived for a greater part 
of his life in his family, and who was provided for in the will 
of the General, and died a member of his household. A tradi- 
tion in the family is to the etfect that he and his sister, when in- 
fants, were purchased in Boston and on being conveyed in sad- 
dle bags to Di'acutt, one, the sister, was unfortunately thrown 
out, resulting in her death. 

"Ryal" Varnum, as lie was most generally known, was the 
house servant of Gen. Varnum. Early in the Revolutionary 
war, he served as a privateersman on board the brig Franklin 
of Salem, Joseph Roberson, master, and shared 1-i of its prize 
money. He also served on the sloop Revenge, Jos. White, 
commander. The latter made a cruise in 1776 and took many 
prizes. Ryal's share of the jjrize money amounted to 146<£ Is. 
7d., of which 4£ was paid to him and the balance to Joshua 
Wyman, who claimed his services. • In Sept. 1777, Ryal sued 
said Wyman for the recovery of this sum and got judgment. 
The Court Records state " Concord, Ct., 13 Apr., 1779. The 
defendant brings into Court 112£ 12s 6d, in full satifaction of 
this action, which is accepted by the ptf. and he takes the money 
out of Coiut with him. " In this case, John Lowell, ancestor 
of Judge John Lowell of Boston, was Ryal's counsel. 

In January, 1776', he enlisted in the Continental service, and 
was stationed at Piospect Hill, in Capt. John Reeds' company, 
Col. James M. Varnum's regiment. In this he served until the 
April following, when he was released and went into service as 
a privateersman. 


An interesting and exciting- event in his career is thus set 
forth in the Journal of John Varnum: 

June 19, 1778. This inorning while at breakfast, heard that Josh- 
ua Wyinan had sokl Ryal Varnum, that ye news was brought from 
Westford by Joseph Varnum Jr., and tliat sd Kyal was carried off in a 
covered waggon Handcuffed. On hearing of which Immediately called for 
my horse. Galloped to Jos. Varnum's to know the Certainty. He confirmed 
it. Sent him to Capt. Jos. to come Immediately & Joyne in ye pursuit 
to Relieve sd Ryal. He came Immediately. Sent Jonas with my horse. 
Gave Jonas $20 to bare his expenses, with orders to pursue with all pos- 
sible speed, overtake, Bring back, and not suffer such arbitrary voyalance 
to Escape with Impunity. They pursued. Came to Woburn, found the 
News confirmed. That it was ye infamous John White, the Scurrilous 
Tinker of Haverhill, that Bought him (at ye same time knowing sd Ryal 
was a freeman) sd White iiad Imprisoned him, ^^'oburn people had liber- 
ated him. Sd White laid a false charjxe affainst him. Said that he was 
an Inlisted Soldier in ye Continental service, that he had received $20 
Continental money & had Deserted, that he had stole from sundry persons, 
& was a thief, & that if ye prison Could not hold him, ye guard should & 
Profainly Swore that he had bought iiim & would have him someway, and 
on that complaint, altho he knew it to be false, he put him under Guard. 
There is ye Infamous White, That hatii w^orkcd by some means or some- 
way to be a Quartermaster for ye Army at oi- near Boston, a fine post to 
get money when Truth nor Honour be not regarded. 

June 20, Capt. Jos. &, Jonas Varnum went to Boston. Complained to 
Gen. Heath Against sd White, had sd Ryal liberated & a promise from 
ye General that he would take Notice of said White. They gave him sd 
White's Just Character, he promised that he would take Notice of it. 
They went to White, Informed him what they had done. He was ex- 
tremely angry. Curst & Swore very Profainly, they dealt him very sharply 
for his Conduct to Ryal. He said that he did nyt know that Ryal was 
free. They told him that he could not know that his Crime alleged against 
Ryal for which he was put in Gaol was true, but that he knew ye (Con- 
trary. He said that all such Danid Neagroes ought to be Slaves. They 
told him that Ryal was as Good a man, & of as much honour as he, at 
which lie was extremely angry & profain. Laid his hand on his Hanger 


by his side. They told him that they had seen Hangers & men before they 
had seen him or his, that they was Ready to answer him any way he pleased, 
that they c-ould not forget his Conduct towards Ryal, that they on sd Ry- 
al's Behalfe should Bring an action of Damage for false Imprisonment, 
that such arbitrary Tyrants & menstealers should not go unpimished. 
They came to Wyman's ye same Day, Gave him ye like trimming. " 

Among the papers* of Gen. Joseph Bradley Yarnnm, who is 
the Capt. Jos. referred in the foregoing nan-ative, there is pre- 
served the declaration of said White regarding Ryal, which 
was probably obtained from White in preparation for the suit 
which was commenced against Wyman. By it, it appears that 
the seizure and imprisonment was in pursuance of a conspiracy 
to ship Kyal south and dispose of him as a slave: 

I, John White, solemnly declare that I purchased a Negro named Roy- 
al of one Joshua Wyman of Woburn, in the county of Middlesex, State 
of Massachusetts Bay, sometime the last of the spring or beginning of the 
summer of 1778, for which I paid him fifty-six pounds lawful money. Sd 
Wyman declared to me on his word of honor that if I would sell the sd 
Ryal to some other southern officer, so that he might never return again 
to New England, he would give me some consideration therefor (as he 
said) on account of his infamous character as a thief &c. And that he, 
tlie sd Wyman, still retains the money from me that I gave him for said 
negro, alledging that he is my slave for life, and that it is my fault that I 
do not make him so. This I solemnly protest to be the truth. 

John White. 

Newbdbvpokt, Sept. 28, 1779. 

There is also this paper, showing that proceedings were com- 
menced against said W^yman, being instructions from Ryal from 
his counsel, Col. James M'. Varnum of Rhode Island, brother of 
Capt. Joseph Bradley Varnum, said paper bearing the caption, 
"Instructions for Silas Royal in his action vs Joshua Wyman, 
to be tried before the October term of Superior Court in the 
County of Bristol, Oct. 1779. " 

• In possession of John M. Varnum. 


1. Take deposition to prove tiie bill of sale made to Wiiite. 

2. Take deposition to prove that "Wyman has confessed that he made 
such a bill of sale, that he was sorry for what he had done. 

3. Make deposition to prove your confinement in irons &c., that Wy- 
man was knowing to it, and that White intended carrying you to South 
Carolina as a slave. 

4. Find out, if possible, who were witnesses to the bill of sale, and 
take their depositions. 

5. Take deposition to prove yt AVyman intermeddled in the affair of 
your release, and endeavored to have those prosecuted who released you. 
Let the witnesses ascertain as near as they can, the date of the bill of sale. 

6. Get a copy of ye whole case at ye Superior Court when your free- 
dom was declared. J. M. Varniim. 

P. S. Desire ye Justices of Peace to be particular in their captions, 
viz : 

A plea of Trespass whereof Silas Royal is Pt and Joshua Wyman Deft. 
Depending before ye Superior Court at Taunton, in Oct. A.D. 1779. 

N. B. Follow your Instructions exactly without minding other people's 
nonsense. J. M. Varnum. 

The suit was brought by Ryal, who claimed damages against 
Wyman to the amount of £5000. Wyman's answer in defence 
was, that the action against him ought not to be maintained be- 
cause sd Royal was purchased by him on the 1st i^ug., 1767, 
and was his negro slave, having been sold to him by Maj. Sam- 
uel Varnum. 

Aside from the personality of the plaintiff, the case is very in- 
teresting from the appearance of so many Varnums, James and 
Jonas being the sons of John Yarnum, whose interest is set 
forth so dramatically in his narrative: Capt. Joseph and Col. 
James M. being the sons of Maj. Samuel Varnum, the original 
master of Kyal, and Joseph Varnum Jr., being the brother of 
Maj. Samuel. In passing, it may add to the story to state, that 
John Varnum the father, and his sons James and Jonas, lived 
near Pawtucket falls in Dracutt; Joseph Jr., near Beaver brook 


or central Dracutt, while Maj. Samuel Yamum and his son, 
Joseph Bradley, lived four miles down the river towards Meth- 
uen, so that it was no small task to get the parties interested 
together to save Ryal from heing carried off out of the State. 

The testimony of James Yarnum was that " sd Royal inlisted 
into the Continental service in January 1776 & joined his Regt. 
at Prospect Hill, & did duty there as a soldier in Capt. Reed's 
Co. and Col. Yarnum's Regt., & until the Regt. was ordered to 
march southward the Ist of April following, when the sd Wy- 
man appeared & made a verbal promise to Royal that as he had 
a bill of sale of him that if he would return home, he would de- 
Hver up sd bill of sale & that he would give him his freedom & 
100 acres of land. Thereupon Royal was released from service 
and afterwards joined a privateer. " 

The testimony of Joseph B. and Jonas Yarnum made before 
Justice John Yarnum was that " sometime in June, 1778, we 
heard from Persons of Yeracity that Joshua Wyman of "Wo- 
buru had sold Silas Royal, and that the Silas Royal was seen 
in a wagon with irons on his hands, between Cambridge and 
Waltham, the sd Royal crying for help, as was supposed; 
But the wagon being drove fast, were not able to make any 
pursuit. Upon this intelligence we set out in order to rescue 
the sd Royal, if possible, from being sent forth as a slave, sup- 
posing this to be the Intent of the Purchaser. " 

Among the papers in the case in the Suffolk County i-ecords 
where the source of these affidavits, and proceedings are to be 
found, appears the following additional paper, being the bill of 
sale given by said Wyman to the said White: 

"Rec'' of John White, Esqr, Quartermaster in Gen. Nixon's Brigade, 
fifty-five pounds for my negro man named Royal, whom I warrant a slave 
from, by or under me, the subscriber, according to the Bill of Sale of the 
same Royal under the hand of Maj. Samuel Varnuni, dated Xov. 4th, 
1767, Reference to the same being had June 9, 1778. Joshua Wyjian. " 

da>^iel: fifth generation. 223 

Alas for the glorious uncertainties of the law! The ease 
was duly tried before an Inferior Court of Common Pleas at 
Taunton, Bristol County, on the second Tuesday of Sept. A.D. 
1779, and Ryal lost his suit being taxed the costs. He appeal- 
ed from this decision and the case was again tried Oct. 10, 1780, 
with the result of a confirmation of the verdict of the lower 

Ryal lived to a good old age, dying in 182G, May 3d, and 
was buried in the little burial ground where rest the remains 
of Maj. Samuel Varnum and his son Gen. Joseph Bi-adley Var- 
num. His expressed wish was to lie beside an Indian, who 
was buried in a remote corner of the ground, asserting his be- 
lief that he was not worthy to lie in the fomily burial lot, where 
it was intended to place his body. He was exceedingly punc- 
tilious as to respect he felt due him as Gen. Varnum's servant. 
If any of the young men of Dracutt failed to take ofl" their hats 
to him when they met him on the road, he would cry out " Boys! 
Where's your manners?" and failing recognition would send his' 
cane after them in double-quick time. 

To his last day he retained the respect of everybody, he being 
a colored man of remarkable dignity of manner, and to whom 
was entrusted all the police of the farm management. 

109. Daniel Varnum^ (Samuel,* JosejJ/,^ SamueJ,^ George') , 
born 22 Feb., 1762; died 31 Dec, 1822; married (1) 3 Mar., 
1789, Persis, daughter of Joshua and Persis Hale of Haver- 
hill, bv his brother, Joseph Bradley Varnum, J.P. She died 
12 Dec, 1796, aged 30 years. 
Four children: 

i. Hannah/ b. G \ov., 1789; <1. 10 April, 1839; m. 13 June, 
1809, Frederick Xoyes of Metlmen. 


Ten children (Noyes") : 

Mary, b. 1 Jan., 1810; m. Brinsley Stevens. 

Hannah Varnum, b. 28 Sept., 1811; m. Moody B. 

Sarah, b. 26 April, 1816; m. Rev. Joseph Burbanli. 
Caroline Persis, b. 31 Mar., 1819; m. (1) James Col- 

liston, (2) Charles Wilson. 
Emily, b. 25 Sept., 1821 ; m. D. F. Shannon. 
Lydia Jane, b. 18 July, 1824; d. 22 April, 1839. 
Ellen Varnum, b. 23 Jan., 1827 ; m. Holsey Bcndick. 
Frederick, b. 5 April, 1829. 
Charles D. Varnum, b. 28 May, 1832; m. Harriet 

Fanny, b. 13 Oct., 1833; m. William Chickering. 

121. ii. Daniel, Jr., b. 21 Aug., 1791 ; m. Nancy Prescott. 

122. iii. Joshua, b. 7 Nov., 1793 ; m. Susan Hildreth. 

iv. Persis Hale, b. 15 Mar., 1796; d. 29 Feb., 1856; m. (int.) 
22 Dec, 1821, James Mitchell, son of Samuel and Abiah 
(Varnum) Barron of Dracutt, b. 16 Jan., 1786, d. 12 Jan., 
1860. No issue. 

He married (2) 26 June, 1798, Polly, daughter of Daniel 
and Polly (Tenney) Butler of Pelham, niece of Mrs. Molly 
(Butler) Varnum, born 2 Mar., 1779, d. 11 July, 1837. 
Children : 

i. Polly, b. 29 June, 1799; m. 27 Nov., 1827, by Rev. Joseph 
Merrill of Dracutt, Paul Tenney of Nottingham West, N. H. 
Two children (Tenney) : 

Augusta Coburn, m. William H. Foran. 
Harriet Varnum, m. Walter M. Hunt, 
ii. Harriet, b. 11 Feb. ,'1801 ; d. unm. 23 Feb., 1884. 
iii. Prudence Gale, b. 1 Dec, 1802 ; d. 4 May, 1882 ; m. 25 Dec, 
1820, Daniel Thissell of Dracutt, b. 4 Oct., 1801, d. 12 Jan., 

Eleven children (Thissell) : 

Daniel Varnum, b. 14 Feb., 1821 ; d. 3 Jan., 1905 ; m. 


(1) Frances Downes, (2) Cynthia Libbie. 

Lydia Ann, b. 3 Aug., 1823; d. unm. 3 Feb., 1898. 

Charles Augustus, b. 13 Jan., 1825 ; d. 3 Apr., 1883 ; 
m. Hester Ann York. 

John Wallace, b. 4 Sept., 1826 ; in. Mary Ann Fox. 

Orphah, b. 3 March, 1828 ; d. 25 Dec, 1891 ; m. Alan- 
son Briggs. 

Franklin Tenney, b. 29 March, 1830; d. 11 June, 1882 ; 
m. Adeline N. Colburn. 

George Nelson, b. 2 Aug., 1832; m. Martha J. Carter. 

Jane Coburn, b. 8 May, 1834 ; m. Richard A. Elliot. 

Mary Ellen, b. 7 Feb., 1839 ; m. Franklin P. Boynton. 

William Henry Harrison, b. 27 July, 1841 ; d. 11 Aug., 

Prudence Augusta, b. 21 March, 1842 ; d. 9 Nov., 1875 ; 
m. Charles E. Brings. 

Mehitable, b. 20 June, 1806; d. 1 June, 1884; m. 2 Dec, 
1829, by Rev. Joseph Merrill of Dracutt, to Franklin Tenney 
of Nottingham West, N. H., brother to Paul Tenney, who 
married her sister Polly, b. 17 Jan., 1803, d. 22 Nov., 1896, 
at AVashington, D. C. 

He lived in Nashua ten years pursuing his trade as harness- 
maker. About 1845, sixteen years after marriage, he re- 
moved to Manchester where he became a member of the firm 
of Tenney & Hubbard, dealers in family groceries. Later he 
became proprieter of the Elm Street and City Hotels in that 
city. In Nov., 1857, he was attracted to Washington, D. C, 
where he leased the National Hotel, whicii had been closed 
nearly a year because of a mysterious and fatal sickness which 
had broken out araoug its guests. This occurrence was just 
prior to the inauguration of President James Buchanan, and 
was a supposed attempt to poison him. Under tiic able and 
judicious management of Mr. Tenney, the hotel early regained 
its former good repute, and because of its proximity to ti)e 
Capitol, and its homelike character, became the favorite abid- 
ing place of prominent men of the nation — Judges of the Su- 


preme Court, Senators and members of Ihe National Congress, 
and during tiie Civil War, the leading Generals of the Army. 
Mr. Tenney was its successful and popular landlord for forty 
years, his death occurring shortly after the relinquishment of 
interest in its management. He was a man who held the 
affectionate regard of all who knew him, of the strictest pro- 
bity, of the broadest sympathy, and of most gentle and kindly 

Two children (Tenney) : 

Georgette Avarina, m. (1) Dr. Warren Chamberlain, 

(2) Dr. Josiah Chamberlain. 
Emma Brown, b. 1 June, 1845; d. 31 Jan., 1879; m. 

30 June, 1870, John Wesley Boss. 

V. James Mitchell, b. 25 Nov., 1809; d. 23 Aug., 1899; m. by 
liev. Amos lilanchard of Lowell, to Sarah Durgin of New- 
field, Me. He was educated at Piiillips Academy, Andover. 
Became a calico printer on the Merrimack corporation, Lowell, 
and afterwards Superintendent of the Manchester Print Works. 
He was, for nineteen years, a member and Captain of the 
Lowell Mechanics Phalanx, prior to the Civil AVar one of the 
crack military companies of the State of Massachusetts. 

vi. Charles Butler, b. 3 Dec, 1812; d. 14 Sept., 1819. 

Major Daniel Yarnum, as he was generally known, lived and 
died on the paternal acres in Dracutt. His military title came 
to him alter the Kevohitionar)' war, in which he was too young 
to serve, fi'om his having been on the staff of his brother, Major- 
General Joseph Bradley Varnum. His father conveyed to him, 
in 1785, when he was twenty-three years of age, 128 acres of 
land and " 1/2 my dwelling-house divided by the middle of 
the chimney, with land whereon the said house stands," having 
previously made a conveyance to his son, Joseph Bradley, of 
the other or western half. About this date the house was de- 
stroyed by fir'e, and Major Daniel erected on the site a very 
handsome house, still standing (1906). It is located on the 


river road to Lawrence, and is one of the best specimens of 
country or farm mansions of that date in Dracutt. His brother, 
Joseph Bradley, had a Httle earlier, erected on land conveyed 
to him in 1772 by his father, the dwelling across the road, in 
which he lived and passed away. The family fires were kindled, 
in the non-sti'iking of the tinder-box, matches not having been 
invented until fully half a century later, by the borrowing of 
live coals from either house. 

Major Varimm represented his native town in the Legislature 
of Massachusetts, during the successive years of 18U9, 1810 
and 1811, and filled many town ofiices with great credit to him- 
self and the approval of its citizens. He was buried in the 
Yarnum burial ground near his house, in the Varnum range, 
in the sixty-first year of his age. 

110. Moses Yarnum^ {John,'' Josej)h? Samuel,^ George^), 
born 8 Aug., 1759; died 30 Dec, 1833; married (1) Lucy 
Mercer, (2) Sarah Dean, born 1762, died 22 Sept., 1833. 

Nine children: 

123 i. Moses,' b. 27 Aug., 1774; m. Sophia Stacey. 
'*''ii. Sarah, b. 175)2; in. 16 April, 182.5, Moses Lemcn. 

124 iii. Jewett, b. G Aug., 1794; m. (1) Kachel Dixon, (2) Ann 

iv. John. 
V. Frederick, ni. 2 Mar., 1820, Susan Gilman. 

125 vi. Justuts Bradley, b. 24 Nov., 1799; m. Sarah Ann Dixon. 
■' vii. Hannah, m. oO Dec., 1822, Josiaii Frost. 

viii. Rebecca, m. Mill Nye of Chester, O. ; 2 children, 
ix. Mary, m. Daniel Barker; 8 ciiildren. 

MosRS Yauxum was born in Dracutt and removed to Maine 
about 1790, becoming one of the early citizens of Belfast. " In 
1802, he and James Badger, both citizens of Belfast, gave to 
the inhabitants and their posterity forever, to be used as a Com- 


mon or Market, the triangular piece of ground at the foot of 
Main street, known as 'Paddle Dock' or Dock Sq:. Yarnum 
was a trader, and had a store fronting the Common. He was 
the jDrincipal owner of lot 35, and through him is derived title 
to some of the most valuable real estate in Belfast."* 

He, early in the century, removed to Marietta, Ohio, and 
finally to Illinois Territory, where he died. 

111. Prescott Varnum^ {Ehenezer,^ Joseph^ Joseph^ 
Samuel,'' George'), born 16 March, 1709; died 26 Oct., 1843; 
married (1) Elizabeth, daughter of Archibald & Elizabeth 
(MacKean) MacAllister of Londonderry, N. 11., born 20 May, 
1770, died4 July, 1810. 
Ten Children: 
i. Mary,' b. 7 July, 1790; in. Jonathan Fletcher of Chelmsford. 
12(3. ii. James, b. 15 March, 1792; m. Elniira Melvin. 

iii. Elizabeth, b. 2 Feb., 1794; d. 9 June, 1867 ; m. 20 Sept., 1820, 
INIarquis de Lafayette, son of Saul & Hannah (Jones) Coburn 
of Dracutt, b. 27 Dec., 1793, d. 28 March, 1867. 
127. iv. Prescott, Jr., b. 24 Feb., 1796; m. (1) Lucy Presbury, (2) 
Elizabeth Clements. 
V. Nancy, b. 1 March, 1798 ; d. 4 Aug., 1827 ; m. 1 Dec, 1815, 
Amos, son of Dr. Amos & Lydia (Jones) Bradley of Dracutt, 
b. 9 May, 1790. 
Four Children (Bradley) : 
George Prescott, b. 24 Apr., 1816; d. U. S. service. 
Amos Lewis, b. 26 Apr., 1819 ; d. in Savannah, Ga. 
Cyrus Augustus, b. 6 April, 1822 ; d. 29 Apr., 1896 ; was 
ordained to the Universalist ministry, 6 Nov., 1845 ; m. 
Lucretia, dau. of Capt. Freeman Foster of Brewster, 
John Varnum, b. 11 June, 1824; d. 12 Feb., 1896; m. 
Augusta Ann Dinsmore. 

vi. Hannah, b. 7 March, 1800 ; d. 13 Dec, 1842 ; m. 3 May, 1821, 

• Williamson " History of Belfast," pp. 139, 683. 

peescott: sixth geisteeatioi^. 229 

Samuel, son of Samuel & Prudence (Wood) Richardson of 
Ten Children (Richardson) : 

Phincaa, b. 11 Nov., 1821. 

Edward E., b. 16 May, 1823. 

Prescott Varnum, b. 8 JNIay, 1825. 

Samuel Wood, b. 11 Jan., 1828. 

Andrew, b. 10 July, 1830. 

George Augustus, b. 5 Aug., 1832. 

Elizabeth Jane, b. 6 Nov., 1833. 

George Augustus, b. 30 July, 1835. 

Calvin, b. 25 July, 1837. 

Cyrus, b. 30 March, 1840. 

vii. Phineas, b. 31 March, 1802. Went to Michigan, 
viii. Susanna, b. 25 April, 1804; d. unm. 4 Oct., 1821. 
ix. Fanny, b. 12 April, 1806; d. 20 Sept., 1874; m. 12 April, 
1834, David, son of Samuel and Prudence (Wood) Richardson 
of Dracutt. 
Four children (Richardson) : 
Franklin, b. 18 Mar., 1835. 
Lorenzo, b. 20 Sept., 1836. 
Frances, b. 10 Jan., 1838. 
Henry Edward, b. 8 Jan., 1841. 

128.x. WiUiam, b. 29 July, 1808; m. (1) Sarah Dinsmorc. 

Married (2) 17 Dec, 1811, Lydia, dan. of Lt. Obcdiah C. 
and Hannah (Ilildreth) Richardson of Dracutt, b. 8 April, 
1789, d. 17 Sept., 1886. 

Nine Children: 

i. Archibald Oakley, b. 9 June, 1812; d. 6 Dec, 1878; m. 8 
Oct., 1838, Anna M. Parker; 1 child, Laura Ann, b. 9 Dec, 

ii. Laura Augusta, b. 22 Apr., 1814; m. Rev. Edward P. Finnell. 

iii. Charlotte Richardson, b. 9 Apr., 1815 ; m. (1) Robert Morrison, 
(2) Charies Baker. 


iv. Clarissa Sophia, b. 18 July, 1818; m. 7 June, 1838, Augustus 

V. Sarah Coburn, b. 20 June, 1821 ; m. EphraimO. Richardson. 

129. vi. John, b. 18 May, 1823 ; m. Nancy E. Green. 

vii. Obediah Richardson, b. 15 July, 1826; d. unm. Dec, 1851. 
viii. Lydia Emily, b. 22 Feb., 1829 ; m. John Jourdan. 

130. ix. Henry, b. 20 Mar., 1832; m. Marietta Lee. 

Prescott Varisttm was Colonel of the 3cl Regt., Second 
Brigade Massachusetts Volunteer Militia, of which Joseph Brad- 
ley Varnum was Brigade Commander. He was chosen Cap- 
tain, 3 May, 1803; Major, 2 April, 1806; Lt. Col. Commanding, 
10 April, 1810; and resigned 3 Oct., 1811. He was succeeded 
by Lt. Col. Simon Coburn. 

One of his grandchildren. Rev. Cyrus A. Bradley of South Brewster, 
Mass., says of him : " As I remember my Grandfather, he was a man of 
sound mind, strong common sense, kind, affectionate, honorable in all 
his dealings. I never heard him disputing on political questions, yet I 
am sure he was deeply interested in all things affecting the public interest. 
I never heard him express his opinion on the religious creeds of his later 
years. His children and grandcliildren differed in religious faith, and I 
think several denominations were represented in his numerous family. He 
seemed glad to know that they were trying to lead honorable and Chris- 
tian lives. I think his religious experiences were of an eminently prac- 
tical nature. I have ever thought of him as a sincere and devoutly religi- 
ous man, charitable to all. When I knew him, his days of active life were 
over, but he was very industrious. My childish mind was indellibly im- 
pressed by the effort he made for the happiness of those around him. I am 
sure all who knew him held him in high esteem. " 

112. Phineas Yaknum^ {Ehenezer,^ Joseph,'^ Joseph^ Sam- 
uel,'' George'), born 21 Nov., 1778; died 13 Oct., 1858; mar- 
ried 13 Aug., 1805, Prudence, daughter of Abijah and Mercy 
(Harris) Fox of Dracutt, born 19 Sept., 1774, died 1 March, 


Three children: 

131. i. Phineas Fox,' b. 22 Sept., 180G ; m. Elizabeth Thomas, 
ii. Prudence Harris, b. 19 June, 1808 ; (1. 22 Aug., 1825. 
iii. Almira Mercy, b. 5 Nov., 1812; d. 22 Aug., 1825. 

Phixeas Yarxuim was the second son of Lieutenant Eben- 
ezer and Hannah (Fox) Varnum of Dracutt — two sons and 
six daughters having been born to them. Prescott, the elder, 
remained on the home farm in Dracutt, while Phineas having 
been apprenticed to the trade of blacksmith, early went to 
Portland, Me., where he became interested in the manufacture 
of iron. He superintended and made all the mountings of the 
guns when Fort Preble was erected. Like his brother he was 
interested in military affairs, and one of his earliest acts in 
Portland was to head a petition on the 9th of June, 1807, to 
the Legislature of Massachusetts for authority to establish 
and oi'ganize a company of artillery in the town of Portland, 
to be attached to the 1st regiment, 2d brigade, 6th division of 
the Massachusetts Volunteer Militia. He was chosen Captain 
of this company when it organized on the 17th June, 1812, 
and it was attached to Lt. Colonel Nichols's regiment, and 
Avas in service from the 7th to the 21st Sept., 1814. It was 
later in service under Major Alfred Weeks in Portland and 
Cape Elizabeth from 28th Sept. to 27th Oct., 1814. This was 
during the war of 1812. He was afterwards promoted in the 
several grades of military service up to Brigadier General in 
1826. Maine separated from Massachusetts and became a 
State in 1820, and his services after that date were as an officer 
rendered to her, and from her he received his commissions as 
Colonel and Brigadier General. 

Mr. ^^arnum Avas one of the original charter members of the 
Maine Charitable Mechanics Association established in 1811 



and was a member for 47 years, up to the time of his decease 
in 1858. This Association erected a large building, with two 
halls for entertainments, and established departments for 
instruction in civil and mechanical engineering, and other 
branches of education. lie was for several years City Street 
Commissioner, and Portland owes to his sagacity and enter- 
prise much of her beauty of streets and avenues. He was for 
many years one of the Directors of the Casco Bank, then as 
now the leading bank of the city. 

The Eastern Argus of 14 October, 1858, gave this obituary 
notice of him: 

" Gen. Varnum was a man of vigorous constitution and strong powers 
of mind. By his enterprise he acquired a large estate to the care of which 
he principally devoted his time for some years. He was at one time a 
member of the Executive Council of the State, and has filled other offices 
of honor and trust. He was a man much respected and beloved by his 
fellow citizens." 

Personally Mr. Yarnum had many characteristics of his 
father. He was a large man with blue eyes. His disposition 
came from a well-balanced organization, never hasty, ahvays 
genial and courteous to every one in his business or social re- 
lations. Every year he and his wife used to journey to Dra- 
cutt, their trunk strapped to his chaise. They thus kept up a 
close intimacy which endeared them to all their relations. He 
was one of the overseers of the poor, and his ear was always 
turned towards tales of distress, with a heart and pocket to 
assist if deserving. In his religious views he was a Unitarian, 
and an owner in the First Church of Portland which, like nearly 
all the early congregational churches became of liberal faith, 
when the doctrines of Priestly and Channing were disseminated 
throughout New England. He died at 80 years. 


113. Joseph Butterfield Vaenum" (Bradley,^ Joseph,"^ 
Jofieph,^ SaiiiueU" George^), born 28 Sept., 1775; died 4 Nov., 
1857; married 28 Dec, 1799, Phebe, daughter of Joel & Phebe 
(Tyler) Spaulding of Chelmsford, born 26 Dec, 1779, died 4 
INov., 1857. j^o issue. 

Joseph Butterfield Varnum was born in Dracutt upon the 
same estate which fell to Colonel Joseph Varnum, on the divi- 
sion of the Samuel Varnum lands with his brothers Thomas 
and John, in 1G99. 

" He was 82 years of age when he died, and until within a 
few months of his decease, had been actively engaged upon his 
farm, participating in all the duties of farm life. His vigor and 
activity were remarkable, and at fourscore years he was not ex- 
celled at the plough by even younger men, and he had the rep- 
utation of being ' the man who could do the best day's work in 
town.' Although not a church member, Mr. Varnum was a 
constant attendant at divine service at the First Congregation- 
al Church of Dracutt, and its most liberal contributor, besides 
leaving to it a handsome legacy in his will. He was universal- 
ly popular, having a large acquaintance young and old. Mrs. 
A'ai-num, who for sometime had been in feeble health, had fre- 
quently expressed the wish that her life might be spared as 
long as that of her aged pailner, and, as if Heaven had an- 
swered her pi-ayers, she expired on the same day in less than 
five hours after he had breathed his last. She was 78 years old 
and for many years had been an exemplaiy member of the 
Church which she and her husband attended. Her amiable de- 
portment and many virtues caused her to be beloved, respected 
and honored."* 

Mr. A^arnum was a man of large means, a director in the larg- 
est bank in Lowell, but not inclined to politics, although very 
public-spirited as a Dracutt citizen. 

♦ Obituary in Lowell Courier. 


114. Bradley Yarnum^ {Bradley,^ Joseph,'^ Joseph? Sam- 
uel,^ Oeoi-ge^), horn 2 June, 1778; died 15 Sept., 1857; mar- 
ried 27 Dec, 1806, Julia, daughter of Col. Louis and Catharine 
(Wimble) Ansart of Dracutt, born 19 June, 1785, died 12 Oct., 

Five children: 

i. Julia Augusta,' b. 17 ,Tuly, 1807 ; d. 30 Sept., 1822. 
ii. Elizabeth Wimble, b. 25 July, 1810; d. unm. 11 Mar., 1845. 
132. iii. Cliarles Bradley, b. 5 Sept., 1815; m. Rebecca S. Gage. 

iv. Julia Ansart, b. 7 June, 1823 ; d. 28 June, 1897 ; m. 12 
Nov., 1845, Abel, son of Timothy & Hannah (Varnum) Co- 
burn of Dracutt, b. 24 Aug., 1815, d. 2 Oct., 1894. 
One child (Coburn) : 
Elizabeth Czarina. 

V. Eleanor, b. 12 July, 1825; m. 1 June, 1859, Oliver Barrows. 
No issue. 

Bradley Varnum was a stonemason. He superintended 
the laying of the foundation of the mills and the walk along 
the Pawtucket Canal in Lowell, Mass., which were built of 
Dracutt granite. 

115. Joseph Varnum^ {Joseph,^ Joseph,'^ Joseph,^ 8am- 
uel,"" George'), born 17 March, 1778; died 1 Nov., 1849; m. 19 
Feb., 1800, Ruth Moody Johnson of ]S"ottingham West, born 
4 Dec, 1772, died 27 March, 1843. 

Six children : 

i. Sallv Johnson,' b.'S Dec, 1800; d. 5 Oct., 1826. 

ii. Harriet, b. 24 Sept., 1802; d. 3 May, 1843; m. 23 Oct., 

1819, Jesse, son of Capt. Nathl. and Mercy Coburn ofTyngs- 

iii. Marv Jane, b. 22 May, 1804; d. 14 Nov., 1814. 
iv. Joseph, b. 31 May, 1806; d. 26' June, 1806. 


V. Ruth Moody, b. 2 April, 1810; d. 18 Sept., 1810. 

vi. Hannah Jane, b. 20 May, 1812; d. 11 Sept., 1838; m. 16 

May, 1834, J. Tyler Fletcher of Clielmsford, b. 28 June, 

1809. No issue. 

116. Samuel Vakxum^ {Jot^eph,^ Joseph,* Joseph^ Scnn- 
uel,^ George^), born 17 Jan., 1787; died 7 March, 1864; m. 
April, 1806, Sarah Jackman of Newburyport, born 27 Nov., 
1785, died 1.3 June, 1859. 

Ten children: 

i. Sarah Ann, b. 25 Jan., 1807; m. ^Ym. T. Jackson. 

ii. Eunice, b. 21 Jan., 1809; d. 3 July, 1859; m. Timothy Os- 

iii, Phebe Spaulding, b. 27 Feb., 1811; d. 22 July, 1855; m. 
Henry Jackman. 

iv. Adaline, b. 24 Apr., 1813; d. 29 Aug., 1814. 

V. Joseph Butterfield, b. 3 Dec, 1815; m. Catharine Howard; 
1 dau., Phebe Caroline. 

vi. Mary Johnson, b. 28 May, 1818; m. Samuel Merrill. 

vii. Martha Bradstrect, b. 21 Apr., 1820; d. 23 Sept., 1879. 

viii. Charlotte Ann, b. 28 June, 1822 ; d. 15 Oct., 1868 ; m. Wm. 

ix. Elizabeth Morse, b. 14 Jan., 1827; d. 26 Sept., 1874; m. 
Elisha Storey. 

X. Hannah Jane, b. 15 Nov., 1830; m. Franklin Storey. 

Samukl Vakxiim went to "West Xcwbury to learn the 
wheelwright trade when fourteen years old. He married and 
settled in Newburyport, and lived near Chain Bridge. 

117. Joseph Bh.vdley Yauxum" {Jostpli Bradley^ Sam- 
uel* Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 31 Jan., 1785; died 
15 Jan., 1867; married 13 Oct., 1824, ISIary Ann, daughter of 
Nathan B. and Jane (Lorimer) Graham of New York, born 
2 June, 1803, died 17 Feb., 1871. 


Seven children: 

i. Mary Jane,' b. 12 Aug., 1825 ; d. 7 Oct., 1905 ; m. 3 Nov., 

1847, Henry A., son of Dr. Valentine and Jane (Wall) VJ^) 
Mott of New York, b. 26 Aug., 1824, d. 6 Feb., 1894. / 

Four children (Mott) : 

Mary, m. Joseph T. Lowe of New York. 
Joseph Varnuin, b. 5 Sept., 1848; d. 23 Dec, 1904. 
Emma, ra. Sidney Whittemore. 
- Henry, b. 22 Oct., 1852; d. 8 Nov., 1896. 
Louisa, b. 5 Sept., 1859; d. 3 Mar., 1885; m. Frank- 
lin L. Gunther. 

ii. Joseph Bradley, b. 15 Dec, 1826 ; d. 13 Aug., 1827. 
iii. Joseph Bradley, b. 29 Dec, 1827 ; d. 4 Sept., 1838. 
iv. Louisa Graliam, b. 4 May, 1830; d. 26 Sept., 1849. 
V. James Lorimer, b. 8 Jan., 1833; d. 7 June, 1835. 
vi. Margarett Ann, b. 15 Aug., 1834; d. 18 Sept., 1875; m. 
23 June, 1855, James Weeks, son of Benjamin Townsend 
and Eliza ( ) UnderhiU of New York, b. 23 Mar., 

1819, d. 19 Mar., 1867. 
Three children (Underbill) : 

Mary Louisa, b. 23 Aug., 1856 ; d. 23 Nov., 1878. 
James Varnum, b. 13 Mar., 1859; d. 19 Oct., 1864. 
Frances Townsend, m. 14 Nov., 1883, Henrietta Graham 
Meyer of New York city. 

vii. Julia Mathilda, b. 17 July, 1840; d. 27 Jan., 1886; m. 27 
Jan., 1870, Edward de Rose of New York city. 
Two children (de Rose) : 

Susan, b. 11 July, 1872; d. 20 Apr., 1873. 

Edward Livingston, b. 17 May, 1876; d. 12 June, 1897. 

Joseph Bradley Varnum 

Merchant and Railroad Pinanciet ' rk City 



By James Mitchell Varnum.'^ 

After spending- some years on his father's farm at Dracutt, 
and attending with his brothers Westford Academy, he re- 
paired to Washington about the year 1810, where he was ap- 
pointed to a clerkship in the War Department under the 
Secretary of AVar, General Dearborn. 

He remained in the position for about a year, and then be- 
coming dissatisfied with the monotony of his duties made ap- 
plication for more active service. 

General Wayne had just concluded his treaty with the Indians 
of the Northwest, one of the stipulations of which, required the 
United States to keep among the Indians, agents to snppiy them 
■with all necessary articles of civilized life at reasonable rates 
in exchange for fnrs, etc. 

Young Yarnnm was appointed to one of these positions, and 
spent the next four years at Fort Dearborn, Fond-du-Lac, 
Mackinaw, and in the neighborhood. He was, of course, 
brought into comnmnication with all the Indian chiefs, amongst 
them with Tecumseh. He acquired the entire confidence of 
the Indians by his fair dealing, and the experience thus acquired 
in the fur trade afterwards proved of great service to him. 

He had many curious adventures and hair breadth escapes. 
On one occasion, travelling to Detroit with a party of other 
horsemen, they discovered about sunset a camp of hostile 
Indians (then in the employ of the British Government), 
several hundred in number, directly before them. Most of the 
other horsemen wanted to retreat, or take a long detour through 
the woods, but Varnum and another prevailed upon them to 
cock their pistols, put their horses to the utmost speed and go 
directly through the camp. So astonished were the Indians at 


this sudden apparition, and at the boldness of the move, that 
they never thought of firing upon them, or giving chase, until 
long after they had passed. 

In passing through Detroit in 1812, he was taken very ill, 
and when convalescent found himself unable to leave, in con- 
sequence of the place being in a state of siege. He was pres- 
ent in the fort when General Hull received a despatch from 
the British commander, informing him that in case the force 
under his command should be obliged to take the town by 
storm, the officers must not be held responsible for any outrages 
which might be committed by the Indian allies, as it was not 
in the power of the English ofiicers to control them. This 
despatch, received at a time when shells were constantly ex- 
ploding around, caused excessive agitation on the part of Hull, 
who was immoderately addicted to the use of tobacco, the 
juice of which streaming out on either side of his mouth and 
mingling with the powder and dust, gave him the appearance 
of anything but a white man. 

Soon after a shell burst and killed an ofl3cer by his side, and 
"Varnum was impressed with the conviction that this occurrence, 
in connection with the previous despatch, led him (Hull) to the 
surrender of the city, for which he was afterwards tried and 
condemned to be shot, but subsequently pardoned. 

Among the prisoners taken on this occasion was the Indian 
Agent Varnum, who was not fully recovered from the effects 
of his late illness and the fatigue and exposure of his subse- 
quent journey to Toronto, together with the loss of an overcoat, 
brought on a return of the complaint, so that he was obliged 
to go into the hospital, where General Brock saw him, and as 
Varnum thought, concluded to discharge him in order to avoid 
the expense of burying him. He returned by stage coach to 
his home in Dracutt, where he arrived just as his father, who 
had just returned from Boston, was in great distress, detailing 


to his mother the intelligence of the surrender of Detroit and 
the captivity and sickness of their son, whose sudden appear- 
ance, of course, changed their sorrow to joy. 

After having thoroughly recovered his health, Varnum next 
repaired to Buffalo under a commission from Gideon Granger, 
Postmaster General, a])pointing him postmaster to the Northern 
army. He organized a service of expresses from Buffalo to 
Washington, through Pennsylvania, and it was from him that 
the first intelligence was sent of cannon having been heard in 
the neighborhood of Bridgewater, Mich., which gave the name 
to the Battle of Bridgewater, although the battle was really 
fought at some distance from that place. It was part of Yar- 
num's duty to pass over in an open boat every day with 
despatches to and from General Gaines, then in command of 
Fort Erie, which was under siege by the British. At one point 
the boat came in sight of the British works, from which a shot 
was invariably fired at him, which he managed to dodge, and 
in like manner he had to keep a sharp lookout for the bomb 
shells, which were constantly bursting over his head, as he 
traversed an open space between the landing and the fort. 

Postmaster Yarnum was present delivei'ing despatches to 
General Gaines when a shell came through the roof and buried 
itself in the floor, then exploding, disabled the latter for the rest 
of the war, but only knocked down and stunned the former. 

In a letter dated Canandaigua, December 24, 1813, Mr. 
Yarnum writes to his mother, as follows: 

" I have just returned to tlic Niagara frontier after witnessing the most 
distressing scene 1 ever Ijeiicld. On the VJth inst. Fort Niagara was 
taken by the enemy, and a great proportion of the troops put to the sword. 
The sick and wounded were all supposed to be massacred. On the same 
day Lewiston, Youngstown and Selosher were burned to ashes, and every 
person who could not escape were cut to pieces by the tomaiiawk or burnt 
in their houses. The scene was awful iu the extreme ; old men, womea 

240 vAE:NTJ]vr genealogy. / 

and children flying in every direction to escape the fury of the merciless 
savages. It was early in the morning, and they had hardly time to put 
on their clothes. Some ran bare foot and others bare headed, leaving 
their all behind to be destroyed by the devouring foe. I fortunately es- 
caped by being obliged to stop a little short of the theatre of blood the 
night before. The inhabitants of this part of the country are all in arms, 
and much exasperated by the fury of the enemy." 

On July 28, 1814, he writes to his father, as follows: 

"On the 23d inst. our army retired back from the vicinity of Fort 
George up to Chipawa, for the purpose of drawing the enemy from their 
stronghold, and to bring him to a field figlit, if possible, before General 
Drummond arrived from Kingston with reinforcements. The movement 
had the effect intended, but unfortunately for us the enemy's reinforcements 
arrived sooner than was anticipated, which enabled him to take the field 
with a superior force against our gallant little army. 

" On the evening of the 25th inst., about an hour before 8undo^^^l, the 
fight commenced near Chipawa, and continued until near 11 o'clock at 
night. A more desperate and bloody battle, for the number of men en- 
gaged, was never fought in America. Our army behaved most gallantly, 
and have acquired a high reputation for bravery and perseverance ; but 
their firmness has almost annihilated the army. The slaughter was dread- 
ful on both sides. The killed on both sides could not have been less than 
seven or eight hundred, besides immense numbers of wounded. Our army 
drove the enemy in every direction, took their artillery from them, and for 
a time the victory seemed complete, but large reinforcements coming to 
the assistance of the enemy enabled him ultimately to recover his artillery 
and cut down our ranks to such a degree that our troops were obliged to 
leave the field. 

" Many brilliant charges were made by our troops, in which they took 
upwards of two hundred prisoners. Among them are Major General Rial 
and suite, one of General Drummond's aids, and fifteen other officers. 
The prisoners are now on their march to Greenbush, except General Rial, 
who is wounded and here. 

" Jlost of our artillery and baggage was saved, but unfortunately many 
of our wounded were left on the field, and fell into the hands of the enemy. 


The full extent of our loss cannot be ascertained as yet, hut it was immense. 
General Brown and General Scott were both severely wounded. Only 
one field officer of the First Brigade escaped death or severe wounds. 
One whole regiment was commanded by a Lieutenant the morning after 
the action, and not fifty men were able to parade. I wdl not undertake 
to give you a just account of the slaughter; it was immense. The First 
Brigade was almost annihilated. 

" The enemy was most sadly cut to pieces, otherwise they would have 
pursued our army, I expect the enemy as soon as they can recuperate a 
little will come up and give u6 anotlier desperate battle. I must confess 
I do not consider ourselves in a good situation to meet them. All our 
best officers are killed or wounded, and most of our well disciplined troops 
are cut up. I have been incessently occupied since the battle in assisting 
the surgeons in dressing the wounded. Many of our officers are desperate- 
ly wounded, some of them in three or four places. They continued on 
the field of battle as long as they could stand. We have now in the hos- 
pital seven or eight hundred wounded men. " 

Soon after the war, Mr. Varnum went west in the employ of 
Mr. John Jacob Astor, who was then largely engaged in the 
fur trade, in which he found Varnum's experience of great ser- 
vice, and wished to take him into partnership, but Yarnum de- 
clined to act in any other capacity than agent, being dissatisfied 
with the other partners with whom Mr. Astor proposed to as- 
sociate him, having reason to believe that some of them were 

lie remained in the business for a couple of years, and must 
have found it profitable, for when he i-eturned he had capital 
enough to establish himself in the dry goods jobbing business 
in New York, which he carried on for many years, first under 
his own name, then under the succesive fiim names of Yarnum 
& Grosvenor, Yarnum, Fuller & Co., and Yarnum, Graham & 
Bebb. lie then became a special partner in the firm of Gra- 
ham, Bebb & Graham, retiring from active mercantile business 
himself. The firms bearing his name acquired great reputation 


throughout the west for their extensive business and fair deal- 
ing, and during the pecuniary revulsions of 1836-7, when al- 
most everybody failed, or was obliged temporai'ily to suspend 
payments, Mr. Yarnum maintained his credit unimpaired. 
His store was at 165 Pearl Street. 

Although out of mercantile pursuits he was by no means out 

of business, for his extensive interests in banks and railroads 

and the disposal of large tracts of western property, of which 

he had become possessed in payment of debts, kept him inces- 

_ lisi^ ^ ""^^ santly occupied. His first connection with railroad enterprises 

If.c.d^UM^' ff f^ , was accidental and enforced, but by degrees his interests ex- 

?./ / H, ^. ^A tended until he became a large stock holder in the New York 

jgJjijUv,- l^ ^ Central, Panama, and several extensive western lines, notably 

^y>C.H.H' ^ the " Wabash, " in which he became one of the largest stock 

i? f-S./l./t '^^' ^^^ bond owners. 

'[^^d^U'C Some ten years after he removed to IS'ew York, Mr. Yarnum 
""^^ -^,/?f^' married Miss Mary A. Graham, a daughter of Nathan B. Gra- 
•* '^ 'v' ham, the family being then one of the best known in social and 

? ^- business circles in the city. 

Mr. Yarnum died in New York, January 17th, 1867, in the 
82d year of his age, leaving a large estate. 

Mr. A^arnum was of quiet and sedate temperament, but like 
many of his ancestors and his own brothers, was a man of large 
frame, handsome face, and courtly manner, and strongly re- 
sembled the portrait of his distinguised father. General Joseph 
B. Yarnum, which now hangs in the corridor of the House of 
Representatives, at Washington, a copy of which is produced 
in this work. 

118. James Mitchell Yarxcm" {Joseph Bradley,^ Samuel,* 
Joseph^ Samuel,^ George^), born 2 Aug., 1786; died 11 Sept., 
1821 ; married 5 Mar., 1811, Mary, daughter of Maj. Augustine 
Pease of Suffield, Conn., born 5 Mar., 1783, died 11 Sept., 181:7. 


Four children: 

i. Mary Butler,' b. 18 Dec, 1811 ; d. 3 Oct., 1859, m. 13 Sept., 
1835, Silas Ilolman Hill, A.M. Dartmoutli College 1832, 
son of John Burleigh and Mary Libby (Maloon) Hill of 
Portsmouth, N. H. He was b. 14 Dec., 1807, and d. at 
Washington, D. C, 13 Oct. 1860. Mr. Hill read law, and 
commenced the practice of his profession in Portsmouth in 
1834. He was offered the position of principal in the leading 
private school in Washington, D. C, founded by Salmon P. 
Chase, afterwards Chief Justice of tiie United States Supreme 
Court, and known as the " Select Classical Academy." Mr. 
Hamilton Smith succeeded ilr. Chase, and was followed by 
Mr. Hill. He subsequently became an official in the Treasury 
Department under the administration of his friend Hon. Levi 
Woodbury, tlien Secretary. 

After a few years ]Mr. Hill resigned, to devote his attention 
chiefly to the care of the family real estate of the Varnuras in 
Washington and to follow literary pursuits of which he was 
an ardent student. He was a m(jmber of the City Council ten 
years, and at one time acting Mayor of Washin<rton. He was 
defeated as a candidate for the mayoralty by tliirteen votes 
only. He lived in a handsome house on the corner of E and 
6th Streets, which after iiis death was purchased and became 
the residence of Chief Justice Chase and his son-in-law Senator 
Spraguc of Khode Island. 
Two children (Hill): 

Helen, m. Dr. John M. McCalla ; during the war a sur- 
geon in the U. S. A. 
Mary Isabel, m. Nathan Sargent. He was appointed to 
U. S. N. A. 23 July, 1866 ; graduated 7 June, 1870 ; 
ensign, 13 July, 1871; master, 10 July, 1874; lieu- 
tenant, 10 Jan., 1881; lieut. -commander, 3 Mar., 
18yi» ; captain, 4 May, 1906. 

ii. Ann Louisa, b. 24 May, 1814; d. 16 Aug., 1816. 
l^S. iii. 'Joseph Bradley, b. 14 June, 1818 ; m. (1) Susan M. Graham; 
m. {2) Helen M. Taylor. 


iv. James Mitchell, b. 14 June, 1820; m. 11 Sept., 1831. He 
was killed by a fall from the roof of his mother's dwelling in 
Washington, whither he had gone to look after his doves. 


By James Mitchell Varnwrn^ . 

James Mitchell, third son of General Joseph B. Varnum, 
was born at Dracutt, August 2d, 1786, was educated in the 
common schools of Dracutt and at Westford Academy. About 
the year 1808 he was brought on by his father to Washington, 
and appointed by Gideon Granger, then Postmaster General, to 
a clerkship in that department during the administration of 
President jNIadison. 

On March 5th, 1811, he married in Washington, Mary, 
daughter of Major Augustine Pease of Suffield, Conn, (an of- 
ficer in the Revolution) and a niece of Mrs. Gideon Granger. 

Mr. Yarnum at this time decided to make Washington his 
permanent home. He became a magistrate, and took a house 
on 8th Street, near the present Market Space on Pennsylvania 
Avenue, and began to make investments in Washington real 
estate, which he continued to do until his death, all of which 
subsequently proved to have been made with remarkable intel- 
ligence and foresight. His father, then a Senator, lived with 
him, and Mr. Yarnum's house became a great rendezvous for 
the delightful society of that period — all the prominent men of 
Congress and the Executive Departments, as well as of the 
Diplomatic corps. 

When war was declared in 1812 and apprehensions were en- 
tertained that the City of Washington would be an object of 
attack, Mr. Yarnum was commissioned by President Madison 
as a Captain, 2d Regiment, District of Columbia Militia, Wil- 


liam Brent, Colonel, and thereafter became generally known 
amongst all the residents of Washington as Captain A^arnum. 
He was in active war service in July, 1813, and from August 
19th to October 8th, 1814. 

When the report came that the British wore on their way to 
Washington (August ISll) Captain Yarnum was ordered to 
report at the Capitol to receive orders, and thence marched 
•with his company to Bladensburg. 

In a letter to his mother dated Camp Washington, August 
31st, 1814, Captain Yarnum says: 

" On the 19tli of the present month tlie citizens of Washington received 
information that the enemy with six or seven thousand men were huiding 
at Benedict on the river Patuxent about 35 or 40 miles from this place, on 
which information the whole of the District militia were called into the 
field, also the troops in the surrounding country. 

" Our troops manccuvred without getting into action until the 24th inst. 
on which day we met the enemy at Bladensl)urg, about five miles from 
this city, with 7,000 strong, in a most advantageous situation to whip the 
enemy — that battle commenced about one o'clock — we mowed them down 
for about fifteen minutes. Nothing was wanted to ensure us a cotnplete 
victory but a General ; but when the enemy were about yielding to us, and 
at a time too, before one-quarter part of our troops were brought into ac- 
tion, our commander through cowardice, imbecility or some otiier cause, 
which may be too black to mention, ordered an immediate and general re- 
treat without order or regularity when only six or seven of our men were 
killed and 15 or 20 wounded. The enemy's loss about 200 killed and 
three or four hundred wounded. Our General was so panic stricken tliat 
he marched the troops fourteen miles from the city. The enemy dis- 
coverered that he was frightened. Admiral Coekburn and Maj. Gen. 
Ross marched into the city at the head of about 200 men, and travelled 
through the streets of AVashington with two or three guards with as much 
safety as if they had been in London. 

"They fired the Capitol, the President's House, the War and Treasury 
Departments, the Navy Yard and all the rope-walks and very many pri- 
vate buildings. 


" Such an indelible stain never was, I am confident, cast upon any coan-' 
try as will be cast upon us by this disgraceful surrender of our capitol with- 
out resistance. The Secretary of War is damned by everybody. He will 
no doubt be removed forthwith. I think Winder, tlie commander of the 
troops, will be court-martialed — nothing can be too bad for him. " 

Captain Vai-mim soon took a position as one of the leading 
citizens of Washington, became interested in every public en- 
terprise, and acquired a reputation for strict business habits and 
unswerving integrity. 

He died suddenly on the 1 Ith day of September, 1821, at 
Washington, leaving one daughter and two sons. 

It may be mentioned as a curious coincidence that Captain 
Yarnuni's father, Gen. Joseph B. Varnum, died at Dracutt on 
the same day and almost at the same hour, that his son James 
M. Yarnum died on the 11th of September ten years later, and 
his widow Mary P. Yarnum also on the same date twenty- 
six years later. 

Captain Yarnum's widow married some years after his death 
the Hon. John Yarnum, a prominent member of Congress from 
Massachusetts, and a second cousin of her first husband, who 
died at Kiles, Mich., 20 July, 1836. 

119. Jacob Butler Yarnum" {Joseph Bradley,^ Sam- 
uel,* Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 13 June, 3778; died 23 
Jan., 187-4; married (1) 2 Sept., 181G, at Mackinac, Mich., 
where he Avas stationed as a Government Agent, Mary Ann 
Aiken, dau. of an English merehant there. She died in child- 
birth, 27 April, 1817, and was buried in a cemetery near Fort 
Denrborn, 111. Her remains were removed to Dearborn Cem- 
etery, and when that became a part of Lincoln Park, were 
again removed (1870) to Graceland Cemetery, Chicago. Mar- 
ried 8 August, 1819, (2) Catherine, dau. of John and Catha- 


nne (Stout) Dodimead, of Detroit, Mich., born 6 April, 1800 j 
died 7 January, 1863, during the investment of Petersburg, 

Two children: 

134. i. George Washington,' b. 7 Jan., 1825; m. (1) Martha A. 
Evans, (2) Anna K. Busby, 
ii. Mary Jane, b. 30 April, 1830; d. 13 Jan., 1840. 

Jacob Butler Varnum, ninth child and fourth son of Gen. 
Joseph Bradley Varnum, was born and passed all his years 
up to manhood on his father's farm in Dracutt, having received 
a portion of his education at Westford Academy near his native 
town. In 1809 he was commissioned by Caleb Strong, then 
Governor of Massachusetts, as Lieutenant in a home company, 
and afterwards as Aid de Camp to his lather commanding the 
3d division of Massachusetts Volunteer Militia. He taught 
school in East Westford and Dracutt in 1810-11. On Aug. 6, 
1811, he was appointed through the influence of his father, 
Government Agent or Indian Factor at the Trading Post at 
Sandusky, Ohio. His long and somewhat perilous trip from 
Dracutt by land and water transportation, is described very 
graphically by him in an autobiography written in 1803 for his 
surviving son. He remained at Sandusky until driven out by 
Indians during the war of 1812. 

In Jidy, 1813, he was commissioned by President Madison 
as Major of the 40th United States Infantry, one of the five 
regiments authorized by Congress for the defence of the sea- 
coast, and was ordered under Colonel Loring to Moose Island, 
near Eastport, Me. While stationed at Fort Sullivan there, a 
large English fleet headed by II. M. Ship Kamallies, unexpect- 
edly appeared and demanded immediate surrender. Captain 
Varnum counselled firing one round at the fleet and then re- 
treating to the mainland, but on being Ibund cut off from that 

248 vAEisruM genealogy. 

expedient, it was decided that to prevent a loss of life it was 
the better part of valor to surrender its little garrison of eighty 
men. These were taken off as prisoners of war to Canada, and 
suffered a long imprisonment. The officers were released on 
parole, the papers being signed by Pilkinson and Thomas 
Hardy, officers who had made their reputations under Lord 
l^elson at Trafalgar. 

Thereafter and until the end of the war Major Yarnum 
was chiefly occupied on Court Martial duty, being also Presi- 
dent of a Couit of Inquiry, sitting at Boston. 

After the ratification of the Treaty of Ghent in 1815, closing 
the war, he resigned from the army, and in August, 1815, was 
appointed Govei-nment Agent at the Trading factory at Fort 
Dearborn, afterwards Chicago, Ills. After long delays in 
transportation, and non-arrival of goods, during which time he 
spent many months at Fort Machinac, Mich., where he met 
and married his first wife, he reached Fort Dearborn. He 
arrived at his post in Sept., I81fi, four years after the massacre 
of Capt. Heald and his command. His first duty was gather- 
ing up the scattered bones of the unfortunate victims and per- 
forming the rites of burial. He says: " The Fort at this time 
presented a most desolate ajjpearance, only the skeletons of 
two buildings remained. The smaller of the two was assigned 
to me and my wife, and after a while was made habitable, 
although very cramped. It was only twenty feet scpiare and 
it was parlor, bedroom and kitchen, all in one." It was occu- 
pied by them until her death in childbirth in 1817. 

He remained in Chicago until ]820, attending to traffic with 
the Indians, at which date, through the hostility of Senator 
Benton of Missouri, Indian factories throughout the country 
were abolished. In the meantime he had visited Detroit, where 
he met Catherine Dodimead, daughter of John Dodimead, who 
had settled in Detroit and become very friendly with the In- 


dians, and made her on August 8, 1819, his second wife. 
After turning over the Government property to his successor 
Major Varnura removed to Washington, D. C, where he was 
engaged in mercantile business up to 1828. He then removed 
to Petersburg, Ta., where he became a ])i'ominent citizen, and 
resided there up to the close of the Civil War. He wasa non- 
combatant during the strife between the North and the South, 
being too old for service, and was shut up in Petersburg during 
the memorable seige, during which he lost his wife and com- 
panion. After the war he came North, but resided principally 
at Washington, where at the jSTational Hotel in 1874: he passed 

120. Ben.jamin Fr.\xklin Varxum" {Joseph Bradley,^ 
ScnnneJ,* Joseph^ Samud^ George^), born 11 April, 179.5 ; d. 
11 Jan., 1841 ; married 11 April, 1820, Caroline, daughter of 
Joseph and Lydia (Worcester) Bradley of Dracutt,born 2 Aug., 
1802; d. IG Nov. 1883. Both were lineal descendants of Josei:)h 
and Hannah (Heath) Bradley of Haverhill. 

Ten children: 

i. Caroline Bradley,' b. 27 April, 1S21 ; d. 27 May, 1875 ; 
m. 8 Aug., 1844, Alpheus R., eon of Ahrani and Eunice 
(Kimball) Brown of Hopkinton, N. H., b. 3 Nov., 1814; 
d. 2 Nov., 1889. He was graduated at Dartmouth Col- 
lege in 18.S6 and received the degree of A. M. He read 
law with Judge Horace Chase of Hopkinton, X. H., and 
William 8mith of Lowell, entering into practice there in 
1839. He represented Lowell in the Maes. Legislature 
in 1852 ; was a member of the Mass. Constitutional Con- 
vention in 1853, and city solicitor of Lowell in 1856 to 
1858. He removed to Boston in 1871, became associate 
judge of the Police Court, in Somervillc, and died at the 
age of 75. Two children (Brown) : Grace Caroline, 
Alpheus Roberts. 


ii. Joseph Bradley, b. 7 Oct., 1823. He went to California 
overland, in 1849, as a member of the "Lynn Sagamore 
Mining and Trading Co., " when he was twenty-six years 
old. He experienced the usual vicissitudes of gold-mining, 
locating finally at Iowa Hill a large mining camp in Placer 
county. In March, 1863, he enlisted in the California 
battalion of the Second Massachusetts Calvary, Colonel 
Charles R. Lowell. The battalion was transferred East 
and joined the Regiment at Readville, Mass., in May. He 
was made sergeant of his company and saw active service 
in the neigborhood of Fairfax Court House, Virginia. 
On the 24 Aug., 1863, while returning from Washington 
with a consignment of horses, his command was attacked 
by Moseby's guerillas at Gooding's Tavern, about four 
miles from regimental lieadquartcrs. In this action Ser- 
geant Varnum was killed and four of his comrades. 
Moseby was badly wounded and for several months inca- 
pacitated for duty. According to Gen. Robt. E. Lee, 
commander-in-chief of the Confederate Army, in the Of- 
ficial Records (vol. 29, pp. 80), Jloseby's guerrillas were 
not at date " mustered into service." This attack was not 
therefore war, but murder. 

iii. Mary Butler, b. 24 Mar., 1826; d. 20 Mar., 1879; m. 
10 Oct., 1867, Moses Giles, son of Rev. Moses How of 
New Bedford. No issue. 

iv. Benjamin Franklin, b. 13 June, 1826; d. 10 Sept., 1875: 
m. Ann Mongovan. One child: Alpheus Franklin, b. 
7 May, 1869 ; d. 24 Dec, 1892. 

V. Henry Clay. 

vi. Lydia Worcester, b. 20 May, 1832 ; d. 17 Mar., 1857 ; m. 
2 Aug., 1853, Moses G., son of Rev. Moses How of 
New Bedford. Two children (Howe) : Alice Lydia, b. 
6 June, 1856, d. 2 Sept., 1859 ; Benj. Varnum, m. Mary 
Belle Howe. 

vii. George Washington, m. Harriet Tibbetts of Lowell. One 

j child: Mary Lydia, m. Dr. Charles A. Sherman. 

viii. John Marshall. " Si queris operam, circumspice." 

Hon. Benjamin Frankllin Varnum 

High Sheriff D/ihe County of MiddUstx, 1831-1841 
From portrait in possession of John M. Vamum 


ix. Rebecca Arms, 26 June, 1838; d. 14 Jfin., 1839. 
135. X. Williiun Harrison, b. 6 June, 1840; m. Sarah Frances 


By John Marshall Varnum.'' 

Benjamin Fkankltn, the youngest son of Gen. Joseph 
Bradley Varnum, attended the district school which was located 
near his home, his grandfather Samuel having donated to the 
town of Dracutt its site. lie finished his education at the 
Westford Academy, of which institution his father was one of 
the incorporators, and on which he l)estowed all the weight of 
his patronage and influence by sending four of his sons there 
to be educated. After graduation young Varnum kept school 
in the same school-house where he had been taught the rudi- 
ments. It is related that one of his pupils, a cousin and a 
neighl)or, Harriet Varnum, one day bungled over her lesson. 
"Don't you know that word, Harriet?" kindly asked her in- 
structor. " Yes, I do, Ben Varnum, just as well as you do," 
was her saucy and defiant reply. 

He remained on the farm occupied with its duties, but made 
a journey at the age of 18 to Washington, where his father 
was a Senator. He Avas thei'e entrusted with some business as 
a clerk to a committee, but did not remain long in that city, as 
in his absence, matters did not progress well at home. None 
of his brothers were there. One by one after they had reached 
manhood they had left the home farm for more active and con- 
genial pursuits. George Washington, the eldest, on whom his 
father seems to have relied to remain at home and take to farm 
life, had gone to Virginia and settled at Lynchburg, where he 
became a prominent man and a member of the State Assembl}'; 
Joseph Bradley had become a clerk at Washington, and later 


had entered the employ of John Jacob Astor; James Mitchell 
had also taken a government position at Washington and mar- 
ried there ; Jacob Butler had, through his father's influence, 
become an Indian agent or factor, and later, Major in the 40th 
United States Infantry; John Hancock had passed awaj' in 
1801. His brother Jacob thus fondly alludes to him in after 
years: "John was a noble, sprightly boy, highly intelligent 
and ambitious. It Avas his pride to compete with me both at 
school and on the farm-acres, and although three or four years 
my junior, he was generally successful. Active and persever- 
ing, he would snffei- none of the laborers on the farm to go 
ahead of him, Avhich was to them a matter of great wonder- 
ment. Had the dear boy lived, I have never doubted that he 
Avould have taken the lead of his brothers, and assumed a con- 
spicuous stand in the family." Benjamin was thus left the 
only son to look after his father's interests, and to him thei-e- 
fore was entrusted the farm management, and the various en- 
terprises of his illustrious father. 

After the retirement of the General from congressional life 
in 1817, when his son was 21 years old, and he himself 67, 
there were still political as well as military matters to engross 
his attention, as he was a State Senator, and senior Major 
General of the State ^lilitia, and on his stafi" with the rank of 
Major was his youngest son Benjamin. In his journal, young 
Yarnum records at this period the perplexities which troubled 
him as to his place in life. Manifestly he was averse to the 
life of a farmer, however attractive it appeared to his father, 
who, having been actively and laboriously engaged in public 
aifairs, turned with satisfaction to the rest and peace of country 
life. He longed to get out into the world of activity and bus- 
tle, and his brothers' successes were a strong incentive. At the 
earnest intercession of his father he finally agreed to remain 
at home to care for him and his mother during their lives, and 
to the end he faithfully performed his trust. 


How methodically and business-like he conducted farm 
aflfairs his books show. In these he carefully noted the cost 
of everything and the details of profit or loss, finally, at the 
year's end, epitomizing the result in a showing of the values 
of land; of stock, in cattle, sheep or swine; of fodder or grain 
or manure. He was thus early a careful business man, and 
the same minuteness of detail he practiced in all his business 
affairs throughout his life. Ilis mind was not on farming as a 
steady pursuit, in fact he could not well follow the plow, for 
his father's standing early brought him into prominence. 

He became a selectman of the town. In 182-1 and 1825 he 
represented Dracutt in the Legislature, and during the suc- 
cessive years up to 1831 he was Senator from Middlesex 

He had a practical knowledge of surveying, and in 1826 was 
appointed a member of the Commission on the part of the 
State to determine the boundary line between Massachusetts 
and New Hampshire, a question which had occasioned con- 
tinued controversy from 1711. He was finally employed to 
set the boundary stones, and so well and accurately did he 
perform his work that his figures were the final authority 
which helped end the controversy in 1885. After the abolition 
of the Court of Sessions, in 1828, he became a member of the 
first Board of Highway Commissioners, known subsequently 
as that of the County Commissioners. In the winter of 1831 
the Legislature passed an act which limited the tenure of the 
ofiice of sheriff" to the term of five years. Under this law, which 
took effect June 1, 1831, Mr. Varnum was appointed Sheriff 
of Middlesex, the most populous county in the State. "No 
appointment," says a contemporary, " could have been made 
more satisfactory to the legal profession or to the community. 
At the exjjiration of his term in 1836 he was reappointed, not 
only without opposition or complaint, but in conformity with 


the well-known wishes of the public. His varied and respon- 
sible duties were performed with decided energy and prompt- 
ness, and at the same time with characteristic urbanity." He 
greatly elevated the tone and dignity of the office, devising a 
court uniform adoi-ned with a handsome button containing the 
insignia of the Commonwealth, the custom having been to ap- 
pear in the ordinary civilian dress. This invested the office 
with some of the ceremony and dignity pertaining to the sta- 
tion in Eugland. 

In 1820, when he was 25 years old, he married Caroline, 
daughter of Joseph Bradley, a prominent man in this section, 
who came of a Haverhill family who were renowned Indian 
fighters. Mr. Bradley's father, Amos, had early settled in Dra- 
cutt, and bought in 1761 the ferry across the Merrimack river 
where Central bridge now spans the stream. This marriage 
proved a most happy one, and in after years Mr. Varnum 
alludes to it thus : " I have abundant reason to thank a kind 
Providence for giving me a partner in all respects equal to my 
wishes. Her virtues shine like the stars of Heaven and direct 
me to that which is good." 

On the 21th of February, 1825, Mr. Bradley and others as 
incorporators, petitioned the General Court of Massachusetts 
for authority to build a bridge across the Merrimack between 
the towns of Dracutt and Chelmsford, and Mr. Yarnum became 
clerk and executive officer of the corporation. The city of 
Lowell came into legal existence the following year, and the 
building of the bridge was a sagacious and far-seeing enter- 

In 1833, after the death of his mother had released him from 
his obligation to maintain a home for her at the home fai-m, he 
began the erection of a handsome and commodious residence 
on Dracutt heights, overlooking the valley of the Merrimack 
and the growing manufactories of the thriving city across the 

Drag u it, 1830 

From original plan made for the Stale of Masiachusetts 
by Ben/. F, I'arnum, Surveyor 



river. Here he had the opportunity and the means to indulge 
his rare tastes in laying out extensive grounds for his residence, 
adorning with trees and shrubs and flowers to an extent at 
that date^very unusual. Hither he removed in 1834 to enjoy 
the luxury of a home I'ashioned after his own cultivated ideals. 
The locality became known as Centralville to distinguish it 
from other sections of the town, and here he entered into many 
projects with Mr. Bradley, who was a large landed proprietor, 
looking to the building up of this section. An Academy 
building and subsequently a large boarding-house for scholars 
was erected, and incorporated as the Centralville Academy, 
with Mr. Bradley as President and Mr. Yarnum as Treas- 
urer. The school house afterwards erected on the site of 
the Academy building was named by the city of Lowell in 
honor of Mr. Yarnum. At the time of his decease in 1841, 
Mr. Yarnum had a project ready for incorporation, to be called 
the " Dracutt Aqueduct Corporation," for the purpose of sup- 
ph'ing the village with pure water. The carrying out of his 
plan would have made Centralville ultimately a choice locality 
for the residence of the well-to-do citizens of Lowell. 

During his term of office as executive officer of the county, 
occurred the assault on and the burning of the Ursuline Con- 
vent in Charlestown. This was the lawless act of an excited 
mob, and it required peculiar tact and discretion to allay the 
popular excitement. It devolved on Sheriff Yarnum to carry 
out the law by the arrest of the leaders, and to preserve the 
peace of the Commonwealth. This he did so successfully as 
to elicit from Governor John Davis a letter of commendation, 
expressing his high sense of confidence and approval. 

Having been chosen two terms of five years each to the 
shrievalty, it was his purpose to retire on the year when he 
])assed away. He was an ardent Wliig, and was chief marshal 
at the famous "log cabin and hard cider" celebration at Con- 


cord in 1840, in the campaign when Gen. Harrison was elected 
President of the United States. Ilis prominence bade fair to 
elect him to Congress, and his ambition was in that direction, 
which but for his untimely death would have been realized. 

Mr. Tarnum came home from his duties at East Cambridge, 
where he had been attending Court, with a violent attack of 
fever, on Friday, the 8th of January, 184:1. It was the method 
of practice at that day to resort to bleeding, on the theory that 
blood letting took away the cause of the disease. It was 
resorted to in his case and proved too drastic a treatment. 
He passed away on the following Monday. 

In an obituary of him in the Lowell Courier of Jan. 14, 1841, 
the following appropriate and just tribute was paid to his 
memory: " The various high offices held at different periods 
by Mr. Varnum have given the public a good knowledge of 
his qualifications, and have never failed to show him a man of 
sound judgment, good practical wisdom, and unsullied integ- 
rity His varied and responsible duties as 

sheriff of the most populous county in the Commonwealth 
were performed with decided energy and promptness, and at 

the same time with characteristic iirbanity 

Mr. Varnum was employed in much public business in his 
native town and elsewhere, and in all relations his conduct 
commanded the highest approbation and resjaect. He was a 
good citizen, an exemplary Christian, a kind neighbor and an 
upright man." 

121. Daxiel Varotjm* {Daniel,^ Samuel* Joseph? Sam- 
uel,^ George^), born 21 Aug., 1791; died 6 April, 1859; mar- 
ried 9 July, 1834, ISTancy Prescott of Lowell. 

Four children : 

i. Daniel Hildreth,' b. 1850 ; d. 12 Oct., 1852. 
ii. Lydia Ann, b. Mar., 1854; d. 11 Oct., 1854. 


iii. Joseph Bnidley, m. Carrie F. Shaw. 

iv. Daniel Hildreth, m. Florence E. Fletcher. 

Daniel Varnum and his family are buried in the Varnum Cemetery at 

122. Joshua Vakxum" {Daniel,^ Samuel,'* Joseph^ Sarri' 
uel,^ Georgt^^), born 7 Nov., 1795; died 27 Mar., 1885; married 
II Sept., 1818, Susannah Hildreth of Dracutt, born 17 Nov., 
1802; died 3 Dec, 1889. 

Seven childreu: 

i. Susannah Hildreth, b. 27 Nov., 1819; m. James Whitte- 

ii. Joshua, b. 16 Dec, 1822; d. young, 
iii. Persis Adoline, b. 17 Nov., 1824; m. Mark B. Fisher, 
iv. James Hildreth, b. 28 Jan., 1827; m. Harriet E. Meader. 
V. Hannah Elvira, b. 20 Jan., 1828 ; m. Albert Viles. 
vi. Joshua Burrage, b. 27 Nov., 1830; d. 22 July, 1877. 
vii. Sarah Helena, b. 21 Mar., 1834:; m. Charles Greene. 

123. Moses Vakxum" (Mose.^,^ John, Jr.,* Col. Joscpli^ 
Samuel^ George}) b. 27 Aug., 1784; d. 20 Oct., 18(35; m. 13 
Dec, 1812, Sophia Stacey, b. 12 July, 1792; d. 3 Feb., 1851. 

Eight children: 

i. John G.,' b. 31 Jan., 1814; drowned in Oliio river 1847. 

ii. Susan Stacey, b. 27 Nov., 1815, at Guyan<lotte, W. Va. ; 

d. 1 Nov., 1884; m. 31 May, 1841, Thomas, son of 

Joseph and Lucy (Nowlan) Turner of Shciiandoah Co., 

W. Va. 

Six children (Turner) : 

Adelaide S., b. 4 June, 1842; m. Reese B. Dillon, 
Albert O., b. 27 Aug., 1844; m. Olivia Cliapdue. 
Victor, b. 27 Nov., 1846; m. Clara Harper. 
Victoria, b. 27 Nov., 1846; d. 27 Dec, 1.S4G. 
Lyman C, b. 27 Oct., 1849; m. Sarah E. Leete. 
Senora, b. 22 Mar., 1853; m. Chas. Dcfoor. 








Anselm, b. 21 July, 1818 ; m. Nancy Ward. 
Leander, b. 14 June, 1821 ; m. Angelina Cole Mason. 
Orlando, b. 25 Mar., 1824; d. in infancy. 
Sarah Ann, b. 5 June, 1826; m. George Drown of Cabell 
Co., W. Va.; d. 14 Mar., 1849. No issue, 
vii. Mary Ann, b. 27 Dec, 1828; m. 18 Mar., 1849, James 
Patterson ; removed to Missouri. 
Five children (Patterson) : 

William E., Emma, John, James, Sarah. 
138. viii. Moses, b. 6 Mar., 1833; m. Mary A. Darling. 


By Girard Gompton Yarnum? 

Moses Vaknum was born August 27th, 1784, in Belfast, 
Maine. At that time Maine was a wilderness, peopled only by 
Indians who lived by traj^ping, hunting and fishing. There 
were no schools, churches, or any other civilizing influences; 
hence the early years of Moses Varnum's life were spent 
among the Indians. He became an expert at trapping and 
hunting and fishing, and as a boy he was a favorite among the 
tribes that inhabited the forests. 

Beaver, otter, mink, together with moose hunting, seem to 
have filled the pages of his early history. One story which 
has been handed down to us, is that while hunting he found two 
kings of the forest, bull moose, with horns interlocked. He 
stole as closely to them as he thought he dared, when he made 
the discovery that they were dead from exhaustion, the I'esult 
of the battle. He went to an Indian camp near by, told his 
story and induced the Indians to accompany him back to the 
place and secured their aid in getting the two animals to town; 
the steaks were traded as a luxury. 

Again, an oflTer was made for the pelt of a very large wolf 


that Avas destroying the sheep of the neighborhood. Grand- 
father tried his skill with the trap and finally captured the 
wolf For this he got $27.00, a fortune in those days, and 
was presented with a fine "Blue Jean Suit" of clothes, and 
was then the best dressed man in Belfast. 

From early manhood until 28 years of age he worked in a 
saw-mill. His father platted the town of Belfast, but found 
the venture a failure, as he could not sell the lots. My grand- 
father becoming disgusted, left the State in a wagon, coming 
overland to Pittsburg and thence by the Ohio river in a flat 
boat to Marietta. He located on the Muskingum river, mar- 
ried Sophia Stacey (my father tells me that he does not re- 
member anything about the Stacey family, and I only remem- 
ber that my grandmother was one of the sweetest dispositioned 
old ladies I ever knew). 

Moses Varnum, the subject of this sketch, built the first 
saw-mill on the Muskingum river at Rainbow Creek, and began 
building keel boats. These boats he would load with produce 
and pole down the Ohio river and sell the boat and load. He 
kept this up until he had built, loaded and sold twenty-one 
boats, and fully as many flat boats, which were loaded with 
corn and sold. In this experience as a river man he lost but 
one boat, that one being wrecked on the Scioto river and the 
load lost. 

In 1821 he bought a farm near Millersport, on the Ohio river, 
and moved to it by keel boat, and there began the business of 
furnishing wood to steamboats (at that early day wood was 
used for firing steamboats). It was in the spring or early 
summer of this year that my father, Leander Varnum, was born. 

Alter eight years on this farm, he bought 320 acres of land 
at ]Millersport, for which he paid $000 cash. He lived on 
this farm four years and then bought a steam mill and fur- 
nished the country for miles around with Hour, meal and lum- 


ber. Fourteen years later he moved back to the farm, and 
spent the latter days of his life living with my father and my 
Uncle Moses, his youngest son. 

His was a nature filled with such hidomitable will power 
and courage and honesty of purpose, that he knew no such 
word as fail. He died at the ripe age of 85, and left a name 
that all who knew him revered and honored. 

124. Jewett Varnum" (Moses,^ JoJin,* Joseph,^ Samuel,^ 
George^) born 6 Aug., 1794; died 23 Aug., 1867; married 10 
April, 1823, Kachel Dixon of JeflFerson Co., Mo., born 21 Dec, 
1805, died 11 June, 1869. 

Four children: 

i. James Mitohcll,' b. 10 Oct., 1824; d. imm. 10 Apr., 1898, 
139. ii. Solomon Dixon, lj. 6 June, 1828; m. Elvira Evans. 

iii. Susan, b. 4 July, 1832 ; d. 4 Mar., 1871 ; m. 1852, Ninian 
E. Tolln. 

Seven children (Tolin) : 

Rufus Loring, John Volney, Lemuel Lee, Edith 
Olive, Emma Louisa, Mary Alice, Nancy Elizabeth, 
iv. Loring Herbert, b. 15 Oct., 1835; d. 16 June, 1885; m. 
1864, Louisa Evans of California. 

He married, second, Ann Shields of Monroe Co., Mo. He 
Was born in Belfast, Me., and when his father removed to Ohio 
with his family, he settled, on attaining to manhood, in Illinois 
and became a farmer and trader, dying at 73. 

125, Justus Bradley Vaexum'' (Moses,^ Jo7m* Joseph,^ 
Samuel,^ Georr/e'), born 24 N'ov., 1799; died 22 Sept., 1861; 
married, 81 Oct., 1830, Sarah Ann Dixon of Jefferson Co., 
Mo., born 31 Dec, 1808, died 4 April, 1862. 

Nine children: 

i. Virginia,' b. 4 Nov., 1881 ; d. in infancy. 


ii. John Carlisle, b. 10 Feb., 1833 ; d. 2 Oct., 18fil. 

iii. Ciiristoiiiier Coluinbus, b. 5 Aug., 1835; d. 4 Aug., 1839. 

110. iv. Austin Dixon, b. 10 May, 1837; m. Sarah E. Bayles. 

141. V. Horace Addison, b. 19 Mar., 1839; m. Agnes A. Druse. 

142. vi. Benjamin Bennett, b. IG Dec, 1841 ; m. (1) Sarah A. Barker, 

(2) Minnie Bocdecker. 
vii. Margaret Isabel, b. 10 May, 1844; d. 4 July, 1845. 

143. viii. Leverett Decatur, b. 4 May, 1846 ; m. Anna Hcsterburg. 

144. Lx. Justus Frederick, b. 29 July, 1849 ; m. Barbara Ellen Judd. 

Justus Bradley Y^uinuim died in ISTew Design, 111. His 
son, Justus Frederick, says of him: "He lived on a farm, and 
by frugal and careful attention to his work, acquired consider- 
able land interests. In connection with his farm-work he fol- 
lowed the occupation of cooper, and turned out a grade of work 
which was sought by millers and packers, because of the ex- 
cellent quality of material and class of Avorkmanship. In 1849, 
when the gold fever raged, Uncle Jus, as he was familiarly 
known, remarked, that he ' had a few more wild oats to sow,' 
and joined a party to California, making the trip overland by 
ox-team, which took a greater part of six months. He re- 
mained in that country nearly two years, during which time he 
accumulated considerable of the pi-ecious metal, retui'uing 
home to his family in the summer of 1851. lie was a man 
scrupulously honest in his dealings, and square with all men. 
He was a favorite at all social gatherings, where, as a performer 
on the violin, he kept one and all in a cheerful mood. His 
qualities of head and heart are best understood in the pro- 
found regrets and deep manifestations at his taking away." 

126. James Varxum' (Pre.9cott,'^ Ebenezer,^ Jofipph* Jo- 
seph;' Samael^- George^), horn 15 March, 1792; died 20 Oct., 
1876; married, 1817, Elmira Melvin of Bridgcwater, JST. II.; 
died at Stark, Me., 22 July, 1883. 


One child: 

Mary/ b. 17 May, 1819; d. 26 Jan., 1839. 

James Varnum, so says a nephew, John Varniim Bradley 
of Portland, who was reared by him, " worked on his father's 
(Col. Prescott Varnum) farm until he was 18 years old, to 
which occnpation he was attached, and would have followed, 
but for an affliction which left him a cripple, and incapacitated 
him for agricultural pursuits. Intellectually, he was well 
adapted to a professional life. He entered the office of Dr. 
Skilton of Pelham, X. H., with whom he studied medicine, re- 
ceiving his diploma as fitted for practice from the Xew Hamp- 
shire Medical Society, as was the custom in that day. He first 
settled in Bridgewater, ]S^. H., where he married. In 1824: he 
moved to Stark, Me., where for over fifty years he practised 
his profession, and where he died in 1876. He was a very 
skilful and successful physician, and was called into the most 
difficult cases for miles around. As a citizen he was veiy 
prominent; many times a member of the Legislature of his 
State, and held office in town and county. He was broad and 
liberal in his views of life, entertaining clergy of all denomi- 
nations. It Avas said of him that he was so benevolent that in 
his long years of ])ractice he was never known to exact a fee; 
yet he acquired a comfortable subsistence. He was very easy 
and genial in temperament, a ready and witty conversationalist, 
and a man of rare discrimination." 

127. Prescott Yarnum' {Prescott,'' Ehenezer,^ Joseph,^ 
Joseph,^ Samuel,- George^), born 21 Oct., 1796; died 20 March, 
1861; married (1) 24 ^ov., 1815, to Lucy Presbnry; married 
(2) 28 Feb., 1820, Elizabeth Clements, born at Cape Ann, 
Mass., 15 Jan., 1795, died at Metamora, Mich., 29 Sept., 1879. 


Six children: 

i. Laura Augusta,' b. 1821 ; in. Dennis Stockcr. 

145. ii. William Nelson, b. l;5 Aug., 1826; ni. Julia H. Russell. 

14(3. iii. Joseph Bradley, b. HI May, 1830; m. Maria E. Vibbert. 

iv. Elizabeth ^lary, b. 1833 ; m. James Hodges. 

V. Zephaniah Sexton, b. 3 Apr., 1838; m. Lucinda Vibbert. 

vi. Elvira, b. 3 Apr., 1838. 

Prescott Yarnuji wcMit from Dracutt to Canada, and 
shortly after the death of his fii'st wife removed to Geneseo, 
N. Y., where he met Elizaheth Clements, whom he married in 
1820. She had settled there with her parents, when it was a 
wilderness, having heen born at Cape Ann, Mass. Some years 
after marriage, in 184:2, she and her hnsband made their home 
in Metamora, La Peer Co., Mich., where she died on the farm 
she had occupied for 25 years. 

128. William Yarxum'' (Pre.-tcott,^ Ehenezer^^ Joseph* 
Joseph,^ Samneli- George^), born 29 July, 1803; died 25 July, 
1881; married 21 July, 1833, Sarah Dinsmore of Anson, Me., 
died 26 Aug., 1883. 

Five children, born at Anson, Me. : 

i. Susan Dinsmore,* b. 22 Mar., 1834; m. 6 July, 1851, Calvin 

P. Knight of Anson, Me. 
ii. Emily, b. 17 July, 183G; ra. 27 Jan., 1850, George E. Mer- 
rill of Biddeford, Mc. 
iii. Mary Elizal)eth, b. 23 Dec, 1842; m. M. Belcher of Bruns-- 

wick. Me. 
iv. Homer Pcrcival, b. 23 Nov., 1845; d. 11 Jan., 1862. 
147. v. William Prescott, b. 12 Mar., 1853; m. Alice M. Dunning. 

AViLLiAM Yaenum lived at Anson, Me., where he was a 
miller. He was a trial justice and Justice of the Peace, hold- 
ing commission from Gov. Dunlap in 1834. He was a great 
worker in the temperance cause, and prominent as a church 


129. JoHM- Vaknum'' (Prescott,'^ Ebenezer,^ Joseph,^ Jo- 
sepJi^^ Smnuel,' George^), born 18 May, 1823; married 10 May, 
18iG, Nancy E., daughter of Sylvanus and Clarissa (Durell) 
Greene of Tamworth, IST. H., born 1 Jan., 1823. 

Seven children: 

i. Mary Elizabeth," h. 22 Apr., 1847, at Troy, N. Y. ; d. 26 Oct., 
1873 ; 111. 11 iS'ov., 1869, Geo. D. Eiitler of Lowell, Mass. 
One child (Butler) : 

Edith May, b. 10 Jan., 1873 ; d. 4 Aug., 1873. 

148. ii. Charles Albert, b. 21 June, 1849, at Troy, N. Y. ; m. Mary 

A. Moore, 
iii. Lydia Ann, b. 25 Sept., 1851, at Dracutt ; d. 11 Sept., 1856. 

149. iv. Jolin Pi-escott, b. 26 Feb., 1854; m. Josephine L. Dyer. 
V. Archibald Oakley, b. 22 July, 1856; d. 17 Feb., 1865. 

vi. Sarah Vivia, b. 29 Jan., 1860 ; m. 3 Oct., 1881, A. J. Collins, 
vii. Henry, b. 19 Dec, 1862. 

Joiry Yaknum entered the army as private in 1861, and 
served through the war, being mustered out as Major. lie set- 
tled in Florida at the close of the war, and engaged in lumber, 
brick and meal and grist in West Florida until 1870. He was 
a member of the State Assembly 1870, and was appointed 
Adj.-Gen. of the State with the rank of Major-General. This 
position he held until 1877, during which time he had charge 
of the Penal Institutions of the State, the quarantine of the 
coast, public buildings and grounds, and the militia. He was 
Treasurer and Director of the Florida Agricultural College, and 
became U. S. Receiver of public moneys at Gainesville, of which 
city he was Mayor in 1882. He lives at Jacksonville, Fla. 

130. He>trt Yaknt'm' (Prescott,^ Ehenezer,^ Joseph,* Jo- 
sep>h,^ Samuel,- George^), married 4 Dec, 1853, Marietta Lu- 
cretia, daughter of Liab and Lydia A. (Howe) Lee of Con- 
cord, Mass. 


Two children: 

i. Helen Carlotta," m. 6 Sept., 1876, Geo. H., son of Dea. 

George and Nancy (Wood) Hovey of Lowell, 
ii. Trnia Lee, m. 4 Nov., 1903, Jolin, son of Jesse L. and Ellen 
(AVood) Fox of Tewksbuiy, Mass. 

Hexry Varxum is a farmer living on the Major Daniel 
Varnum place in Dracutt. 

131. PHnsTEAS Fox Yarkum'' (Phineas,^ Ehenezer,^ Joseph,^ 
Joseph,^ Samuel^' (7eorf/c'), boi-n 22 Sept., 1806; died 24 Jan., 
1892; married 1 Jan., 1834, Elizabeth, daughter of Elias and 
Elizabeth (Widgery) Thomas of Portland, Me. 

Eleven childi-en: 

i. Charlotte Vivia," b. 14 Jan., 1835; d. 19 Apr., 1870. 

ii. Elizabeth AVidgery. 

iii. Prudence Alniira, b. 24 Dec., 1837 ; d. 14 Aug., 1839. 

iv. Phineas Fox, b. 18 Aug., 1839; d. 7 June, 1840. 

V. Gertrude, b. 17 Aug., 1841 ; d. 8 Oct., 1841. 

vi. Phineas Fox, b. 23 Sept., 1842 ; d. in infancy. 

vii. Lawrence Phineas, b. 22 Sept., 1843. He was 2d Lieut. U. S. 

colored troops. Was at seige of Fort Hudson, 
viii. Helen Josephine, b. 20 Sept., 1846; m. 14 Dec, 1877, Louis 

J. Stephens of Jacksonville, Fla. 
One child (Stephens) : 

Phineas Varnura, b. 23 Sept., 1879. 
ix. Elias Thomas, b. 27 Aug., 1847 ; d. 22 Sept., 1848. 
150. x. John Arkwright Marshall, b. 12 Mar., 1848; ra. Margaret J. 

xi. Gcorgianna Julia, b. 4 Apr., 1853 ; m. James A. Gray of 

Saco, ile. 

Phineas Fox Varnuji. " Another of the merchants of the old regime," 
says Eastern Argus, Portland, 25 Jan., 1892, "passed away yesterday 
of pneumonia at the advanced age of 86 years. He was the son of Gen. 
Pliineas Varnum, who came here from Dracutt, Mass., early in 1800, and 


a jijranclson of Lt. Ebenezer Varnum, wlio fouglit in Capt. Peter Coburn's 
Company at Bunker Hill. Mr. Varnum was educated at the celebrated 
Military Academy of Capt. James Partridge, and shortly after graduation 
commenced his career as a merchant here, which he continued until old 
age compelled his retirement. He became a partner of his father, then 
with E. R. Mudge, and later Moulton & Rogers, among the largest and 
most important firms of their day. He served for a time in our City 
Government, being a member of the Common Council in 1835, and Presi- 
dent of that board in 1836. 

Mr. Varnum was a man of the strictest integrity, great energy, and 
exhaustless enthusiasm. He saw into the future in many things beyond 
his compeers. In a speech, made here many years ago, he foretold Chi- 
cago's greatness, and explained the causes which would bring it about. 
Mr. Varnum's magnificent physique will be remembered by our older 
citizens. No man on our streets carried such bulk and weight with the 
same ease and grace." 

132. CiiAKLES Bkadley YAiiNUM' {Bradley,^ Bradhy^ 
Joseph,^ Josepli;^ Samuel^- George^), hovn 5 Sept., 1815; died 
14 Oct., 1861; married 8 April, 1844:, Rebecca S. Gage of Dra- 
cutt, born 1819, died 3 April, 1896. 

Seven children: 

i. Joseph Butterfield,' b. 13 Jan., 1845 ; d. 8 Mar., 1847. 

151. ii. Charles Frederick, b. 28 June, 1846; m. Abbie L. Davis. 

152. iii. Joseph Butterfield, b. 13 Apr., 1847 : m. (1) Isabel G. Mowry, 

(2) Sadie Ketcham. 
iv. George Cornell, b. 19 Mar., 1850; d. 22 Sept., 1857. 
V. Albert Henry, b. 4 Sept., 1852; d. 25 Julv, 1874. 
vi. Edwin Bradley, b. 11 July, 1855; d. 30 jialv, 1857. 
vii. Edwin Bradley, b. 6 Aug., 1857 ; d. 30 Mar., 1863. 

Chaeles Bradley Yarxum was a school teacher for fifteen 
years. He served as a member of the School Committee, and 
was prominently interested in the town affairs of Dracutt. He 
was bilried in the Col. Joseph Varnum burial-ground, near the 
Navy Yard, Dracutt. 

Hon. Joseph Bradley Varnum, Jr.' 

speaker of the Assembly, Stale of New York, 18$/ 
From original portrait id posiiession of James M. Vamum 


133. Joseph Bkadley Yarxum, Jk7 {James MUcliell,^ 
Joseph Bradley? Samuel* Joseph;^ Samuel^- George^), born 
4 April, 1818; died 31 Dec, 1874; married (1) 30 Nov., 1843, 
Susan M., daughter of Nathan and Jane (Lorimer) Graham of 
New York City, born 4 July, 1819, died 20 May, 1857. 

One child : 
153. James Mitchell,' m. Mary W. Dickey. 

Married (2) 16 April, 1863, Helen M., daughter of Robert 
and Susan Taylor of New York, born 1835, died 11 July, 1873. 
Five children: 

i. Susan Graham, m. 7 ^lar., I'JOl, Edward dcEosc of New York. 
One child (deliose) : 

Susan Rose, b. 22 Aug., 1902. 

ii. Robert Taylor, m. 19 Apr., 1906, Catliarine Saunders Ingersoll. 

iii. Helen Louise. 

Iv. Joseph Bradley, b. 10 Mar., 1870; d. 16 Aug., 1870. 

V. Amy Lenox. 


Bi/ James Mitchell Varnum.^ 

Joseph Bradi-ey Yarxum, son of Capt. James Mitchell and 
Mary (Pease) Yai-num, was born in the city of Washington, 
D. C., on the 4th day of April, 1818. After attending "pre- 
paratory schools in New England and at Georgetown College, 
he entered Yale College in 1831, from which he graduated in 
the class of 1838. 

While at Yale, Mr. Yarnum was a popular member of his 
class, a member of the Skull and Bones Society, and especially 
prominent in a literary way, being one of the editors of the 
Yale Literary Magazine, and the author of numerous maga- 
zine articles, and a number of plays, which were performed by 


the students in the Calliopean Society, of which he was a 
member. Some of the programmes of these performances are 
still in the possession of his son. 

In his autobiography, hereinafter referred to, he gives many 
interesting sketches of the men in college, at that time, of the 
college discipline, customs, societies, and rows; and amongst 
the latter, the great fight over the retention of the " college 
bully," — all of which might be most interesting to graduates 
of Yale University, but would hardly appeal to the general 
reader of this sketch. 

Mr. Yarnum, alter graduating from Yale College, spent two 
years in the Yale Law School, and subsequently entered upon 
the practice of the law in Baltimore, being for a time a student 
and clerk in the office of James ]S[ason Campbell, the son-in- 
law of Chief Justice Taney of the United States Supreme 
Court. He subsequently opened an office in Baltimore with 
Mr. George B. Dunkel for a year or so, until he removed to 
New York, which occurred shortly after his marriage to Miss 
Susan M. Graham of New Y^'ork on the 30th of November, 
1843. His wife was the youngest sister of the Miss Graham 
who had married his uncle, Joseph B. Yarnum, and to avoid 
confusion caused by the identity of their names, and the fact 
that uncle and nephew had married sistei's, Mr. Yarnum 
thereafter added the word " Junior " to his name, and was so 
generally known until the death of his uncle, in 1867. 

Soon after his marriage he entered as a student the law office 
of Graham, Hoffinan & Bosworth, the senior partner being his 
brother-in-law. Gen. James Lorimer Graham, the other partners 
in the firm, Edward Sanfoixl and James S. Bosworth, becom- 
ing some years later well known as distinguished judges in 
New Y^ork. 

This firm changed its name to Yarnum, Turney & Appleby, 
and continued, after Mr. Yarnum became a member, under 


different titles, until 190o (over 60 years), his elder son, Judge 
James M. Yarnum, retiring upon his elevation to the bench in 
1899, and his younger son, Robert Taylor Yarnum, withdraw- 
ing in 1905. Mr. Yarnum, during his legal career, was con- 
nected Avith many important litigations, and was the counsel 
for many corporations and individuals. 

Soon after he settled in New York, Mr. Yarnum interested 
himself in politics, and was elected several times to the Legis- 
lature, where he soon took a prominent aiid distinguished place. 
He served in the Legislature in 1849, 1850, 1851 and 1857, and 
in 1851 Avas elected Speaker of the Assembly. 

In 1853 he was the "Whig" candidate for Congress, but 
"went down" with General Scott and all the other Whig can- 
didates. Li politics, Mr. Yarnum was a Whig until about 
1861, when he joined the Republican party, of which he was 
ever after a prominent member in the State of New York. 
He always took a great intci'est in local afFaii'S in New York 
City; was for many years a member of the Board of Educa- 
tion; was a member of the famous Committee of Seventy at 
the time of the overthrow of the "Tweed Ring" in 1871, and 
served for two years as an alderman of the city, being elected 
upon a reform ticket in 1866-7. 

Mr. A''arnum on 20th May, 1858, commenced a series of let- 
ters in a journal form addressed to his son James jNI. Yarnum, 
then a young child, somewhat after the style of the letters 
of Lord Chesterfield to his son, setting forth the occurrences 
and customs of the times from his earliest recollection up to 
1868. He embodied in them his views of life as drawn from 
his own experience, and gave calm and dispassionate sugges- 
tions and advice to his son as to the future. He also included 
a general history of the Yarnum family, that he might incul- 
cate an interest in his ancestry by a knowledge of the lives of 
those of his name who had been prominent in the military 


service and in the upbuilding of the nation. He had a just and 
loyally characteristic estimate to make of those of his name 
who had achieved distinction, and kept in mind dispassion- 
ately the tribute to be paid to their memories. As he was a 
man himself of prominence in public and business life, his 
estimates are of great weight. 

In alluding to his grandfather's family, he says : 

" According to the custom whicli seems to have prevailed in his day, the 
eldest son received a college education, and Joseph Bradley Varnum, be- 
ing destined for a farmer, went to the common school only. Tliis gave 
his elder brother James Mitchell a decided advantage, as he became a 
distinguished advocate, and figured with renown as Judge, Statesman 
and Soldier. He has left a great reputation in Rhode Island and the 
most extraordinaiy accounts are handed down of the eifects produced by 
his addresses, altliough it must be acknowledged that the printed reports 
of his efforts, which have been preserved, do not sustain his reputation. 
This is not remarkable, as the influence exerted by an orator is quite as 
much from his manner, gestures, ready tact in debate, and a thousand 
other things, which the reporters of that day could not give, and which 
even those of the present time often fail in conveying an accurate impres- 
sion to the reader. Joseph Bradley Varnum, the younger brother, had a 
good mind, habits of acute obsei'vation and an exceedingly good stock of 
common sense which made the deficiency of education less apparent than 
might have been expected. He himself seems never to have regarded it 
as a very serious deficiency, and looked upon a liberal education as un- 
necessary for his sons. They never ceased, however, to express their 
regrets over this omission, and to urge upon their father to give their 
youngest brother Benjamin the educational advantages of which they were 
deprived. Gen. Varnum was a Democrat of the Jeffersonian school — a 
class of politicians who cannot be said to exist at the present day, although 
the so-called Democrats profess* to be of the legitimate succession. He 
exercised much influence while in Congress by his tact and sound judg- 

Mr. Yarnum, although the greater part of his life was spent 
in New York, was ever a loving and loyal son of Washington 


— the Capital City of the United States, and his birth-place. 
He was among the first if not the very first, to bring- before 
the public the history of its ince2)tion, the aims and oljjects of 
its creation, the original plans for its foundation and improve- 
ment, and the proper and logical action which should be taken 
on the part of our Government to carry out the high i)urpose 
of its founders and make the capital city of the nation, a " city 
beautiful " as it was planned by Major L'Enfant and its original 

Such action has, in part, been already taken, which will be 
fully carried out, if the plans recently (190G) recommended by 
the committee of Congi-ess as approved by the leading archi- 
tects and landscape gardeners of the country are formally 
adopted by Congress. 

In 1847 Mr. Varnum commenced a campaign before the 
public to secure this ultimate result. He i-ead papers on the 
subject, before the jS'ew York Historical Society, the [Maryland 
Historical Society and an assembly of citizens at Washington. 
He subsequently published articles bearing on the same subject 
in IlnnCs MerchnnU Magazhw, then a leading periodical. In 
the following year he embodied his views more fully in a book 
entitled "The Seat of Government of the United States," being 
a review of the discussions in Congress and elsewhere, on the 
site and plans of the Federal City, with a sketch of its present 
position and prospects. He continued his campaign on be- 
half of the neglected capital city through letters, magazine ar- 
ticles and personal appeals to Congressmen and officials of the 
Government, and later published another work entitled the 
" "Washington Sketch Book," dealing with the same general 
subject, and again appealing to the nation for justice and fair- 
ness to the city which it had brought into being, and to Avhich 
it OAved the natural obligation for sujjport and encouragement 
that a parent owes to its legitimate and helpless offspring. 

272 VAETSrUM gestealogt. 

In 1867, so earnest was his zeal in the cause that he drew up 
an elaborate plan for the takina^ under Govermental control 
the entire District of Columbia throufih a Board of Coinmis- 
sionei's appointed by the President of the United States, admin- 
isterinof through this Board the financial and civic administra- 
tion of the city of Washington; the United States Government 
instead of the municipality being the administrator of its 
affairs. This charter was put ]>efore the prominent citizens of 
the city, and the result was the inauguration substantially of 
the present regime, nearly all of his suggestions being adopted. 
The result has been most gratifying to the nation and has made 
Washington one of the most beautiful capital cities of the 
world. Mr. Yarnum's predictions as to its future are being 
realized. He claimed for it that through its gathering of the 
prominent men in statesmanship in Congressional and Govern- 
mental life; its archives of national history and the literature 
of the United States through the copyright law, and the world 
of books in the National Library; the scientific knowledge 
gathered under Governmental auspices by expeditions and re- 
searches through the Smithsonian Institute ; its National Mu- 
seum of the treasures of mineral and agricultural resources of 
the United States ; its Army Medical Museum, with its vast 
collection of medical and surgical specimens, would become 
the great representative city of the nation in its social and 
educational influence on the men who would be attracted 
thither as a residence. 

Mr. G. W. Bungay in the New York Stm, in 1857, in an 
article on the members of the State Legislature, thus described 
him : 

" Mr. Varnum is very pleasing in his personal relations, and is an effec- 
tive speaker, convincing more by tlie force of his reasoning than by elo- 
quence, peroration or passionate invective, and is as happy in his conclu- 
sion as he is forcible in argument. He is a fine looking man, has dark 


hair, touched with silver; wears a heavy beard, has an honest face, and 
wears spectacles." 

The Century Association, the leading literary and artistic 
club in New York City, paid the following tribute to his mem- 
ory at its first meeting after his death in January, 1875: 

"Among us, too, Joseph Varnum, open as frankness itself, and acute 
and observing with all his bonhommie, showed how energy and usefulness 
in public affiurs spring naturally from the plain candor, the honest pur- 
pose, the zeal for right, that made liis discriminating friendship prized." 

134. George Washington Yaenum^ {Jacob Butler^ 
Joseph Bradley,^ Samuel* Joseph^ Samuel^- George^), born 
7 Jan. 1825; married (1) 1855, Martha daughter of John and 
Eliza (Jackson) Evans of Diuwiddie Co., Ya. 

One child : 

154. i. Joseph Butler,** m. Martha E. Robertson. 

He married (2) 15 Dec, 1868, Annie L., daughter of Louis 
and Elizabeth (McClausham) Busby, of Palmyra, Mo. 
Five children : 

i. Catherine, m. 21 Sept., 1887, George S., son of Samuel and 
Harriet E. (Fyson) Irish, of AVarboys, Hunts, Eng. 
Three children (Irish) : 

Amic Fyson, b. 27 Sept., 1889. 

Cecil Varnum, b. 25 Mar., 18<»1. 

Percy Busby, b. 12 Dec, 1893. 

155. ii. James Edgar, m. 22, Feb., 1894, Mabel D. Starbuck. 
iii. Festus Franklin, b. 12 March, 1874, d. 10 Aug., 1875, 

iv. Lottie Goldsborough, ni. 9 Jan., 1904, Harrv W., son of 
Charles and Maria D. (Whitaker) Ulrick'of Plaiufield, 
N. J. 

V. George Bradley. Lives at Los Angeles, Cal. 


George WASHDfGTOisr Yarnum was born in Georgetown, 
D. C, and was educated in Petersburg, Ya., whither his father 
removed in 1828. He studied medicine at the University of 
Pennsylvania, and after his graduation, in 1845, was appointed 
one of the assistant resident physicians in the Pennsylvania 
Hospital at Blockley. He settled and practised medicine in 
Petersbui-g. In Oct., 1862, he became a contract surgeon at 
St. Louis under R. C Wood assistant Surgeon General U.S.A. 
In Feb., 1803, he received a commission as surgeon U. S. Yol- 
unteers signed by President Lincoln and Secretary Stanton, 
and was assigned to the Ninth Division, Thirteenth Army 
Corps, before Yicksburg. Here he contracted malaria and in- 
capacitating him for service, he resigned in August, 1863. He 
resided for some years in Montgomery City, Mo., and after- 
wards in San Diego, Cal. He now lives in Los Angeles, Cal. 

135. WiLLLiVM Harkisox Yarnum' (Benj. FranJdin,'^ 
Joseph Bradley,^ Samuel* Joseph^ Samuel^ George,^), born 
6 June, 1810; died 23 Apr., 1895; married 6 June, 1874, Sarah 
Frances, daughter of Joseph & Sarah (Stilson) Tibbetts of 

Child : 

i. William Harrison.- At the head (1906) of the Fine Art 
Department of the James ililliken University, Decatur, Ills. 

William Haijrison Yarxum served his apprenticeship in the 
Bank of Mutual Redemption, afterwards becoming Receiving 
Teller in the Bank of the Metropolis, State street, Boston. 
Here he remained some years, finally entering the boot and 
shoe business, having a prominent store on Washington street. 
He was much given to astronomical and microscopical research, 
and began the manufacture of astronomical telescopes in Cam- 
bridge. He was a man of varied natural gifts, of great probity 

leakder: seventh generation. 275 

of character, and universally beloved. lie died of blood pois- 
oning after a short illness, and was buried in the Vaiiium 
family lot in the Lowell Cenieterj'. 

13G. Anselm Yarnum' (J/o.sfts,^ 3foses,^ John,* Joseph^ 
Samuel;- George^), born 21 July, 1818 j married 19 JS'ov., 
1815, Xancy Ward. 
Six children : 

i. Adeline.' Deceased. 

ii. James Ward. Married; has two children. 

iii. Anselm. Married ; has one child. 

iv. John. Killed in a railroad accident at Cincinnati, Ohio. 

V. Susan. Slurried Eiijali Adkins ; has two children. 

vi. Emma, ilarried J. D. Bowan ; has three children. 

137. Leander Varntjm^ {Moses, ^ Moses, ^ John Jr.,'' Col. 
Josepli,^ Samuel,^ George^), born 14 June, 182], on the Ohio 
river, 30 miles from Gallipolis, is still living, and furnished 
most of the information as to his branch of the family; mar- 
ried IG June, 181G, Angelina Cole Mason; died 4 March, 1898. 

Three children : 
UC. i. John Alhim," b. 28 May, 18-17; m. Ellen JIcKnigiit. 

157. ii. Girard Compton, h. 7 Oct., 1848; m. (1) Clara \V. John- 

ston, (2) Emma Bay. 

158. iii. Leander, Jr., b. It) Dec, 1849; in. Annie Griffith. 

138. Moses Yarnum" (Moses," Moses,^ John,* Col. Joseph,^ 
Sainuel;- George^), born G Mar., 1833; mari-ied 19 Dec, 1864, 
Mary A., daughter of Moses and Mary Darling. 

Six children: 

i. Mary Fcnton,' b. 18 Feb., 1865; d. 27 Aug., 1869. 

ii. Nancy 8., b. 16 June, 1867; m. 12 Jan., 1887, J. T. 
Thornburg, of Hiintington, W. Va. One child (Thorn- 
burg) : Frederick. 


iii. Jennie L., b. 3 Oct., 1868 ; m. 16 June, 1890 J. M. Thorn- 
burg of Huntington, W. Va. One child (Tliornburg) : 

iv. Myrtie, b. 27 Aug., 1873 ; d. 3 Mar., 1874. 

V. Carl K., b. 4 Feb., 1880; m. 16 June, 1900, Nannie A. 

vi. Louis C, b. 7 Jan., 1882; m. 24 March, 1906, Retta 

139. Solomon Dixon Varnum' {Jewett^ Moscs,^ Jolm^ 
Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George^), born G June, 1828; married 30 
Ma}'^, 1865, Elvira, daughter of Samuel and Nancy (Lake) 
Evans, born 11 Jan., 1839, died 7 Nov., 1883. 

Six children : 

i. Olive,' b. 2 Mar., 1866, d. 2 Feb., 1874. 
159. ii. Edgar W., b. 2 Mar., 1866 ; m. Blanche M. Whiting. 

iii. Mary, b. 13 July, 1867: m. 15 Sept., 1885, Samuel R. 

Taylor, son of Robert Taylor of Etna, Cal. 

Six children (Taylor) : 

Thomas Edgar, b. 12 July, 1886. 

Samuel Harold, b. 7 July, 1889. 

Agnes Mary, b. 28 Nov., 1891. 

Gladys Bernice, b. 18 Dec., 1893. 

Cecil Varnum, b. 29 Oct., 1900; d. 28 Sept., 1901. 

Gilbert Earl Robert, b. 24 May, 1903. 

iv. Walter Jewett, b. 28 June, 1871 ; d. 19 Jan., 1883. 

V. Arthur Solomon, b. 8 Sept., 1872; d. 21 Oct., 1881. 

vi. Susan, b. 27 June, 1876; m. 4 Sept., 1900, Gustav A. 

Reichman, son o'f E. Reichman of Fort Jones, Cal. Three 

children (Reichman) : 

Anna Irma, b. 3 Aug., 1901. 
Cecil Adolph, b. 15 Dec, 1902. 
Frederick, b. 27 Oct., 1904. 


Solomon Dixon Varnum lived with his father on his farm 
in Monroe connty, Illinois, until nineteen years of age, and 
then enlisted in the Mexican war, in which he was a sergeant. 
At its close he returned home to Illinois and remained there 
until 1852, when he crossed the plains to Portland, Oregon. 
Two years later he went to California, where he engaged in 
mining near Yreka for about a year. He then engaged in 
farming and stock-raising in Scott valley, where he now at 
Fort Jones resides. 

IIO. Austin Dixon Yarnum" (Justus Bradley,'' ^losesj' 
John,* Joseph,^ Sainitel,- George^), born 10 May, 1837; married 
23 Jan., 1861, Mrs. Sarah Ellen (Wallace) Bayles. 
Five children : 

i. Lilly,' b. 23 June, 1863 ; d. 7 May, 1901. 

ii. Mathilda, b. 13 Dec, 1865; m. John Ryan; four children. 

iii. Cyrus, b. 23 Sept., 1867. 

iv. George Alonzo, b. 13 Feb., 1869 ; d. 1.5 July, 1891. 

V. Horace Wood, b. 13 Apr., 1873. 

141. Horace Addison Yarnum'' (Justus Bradley," Moses,^ 
John,* Joseph,^ Samuel j^ George^) of New Design, Illinois, born 
19 Mar., 1839; d. 20 Apr., 1887; married 25 Sept., 1878, 
Agnes A., daughter of Harrison and Agnes (Cockshott) Druse 
of New Design, Ills. 

Child : 

i. Vera,' b. 15 May, 1885. 

142. Benjamin Bennett Yarnum'' [Justus Bradley,'^ 
Moses^ John* Joseph^'' Samuel,^ George^) of Ava, Illinois, born 
16 Dec, 1811. Fanner ; owns 1200 acres of fine land in 
southern Illinois; mari-ied (1) Sarah Ann, daughter of Lewis 
and Sarah (Tolin) Barker of Waterloo, Ills. ; b. 13 Dec, 1843; 
d. 11 Feb., 1878. 


Five children : 

i. Eleanor Elsie/ b. 10 Nov., 1863; d. 17 May, 1864. 

ii. Carrie Lois, b. 4 Nov., 1866; d. 12 Dec, 1867. 

iii. Laura Ethel, b. 29 Sept., 1869; d. 23 Feb., 1893. 

iv. Olive Isabel, b. 28 Mar., 1872; d. 7 Feb., 1891. 

V. Justus Warren, b. 24 Xov., 1874; m. Emma M. Corhorn. 

He married (2) Minnie, daughter of Henry and Minnie 
(Spellmeycr) Boedecker of Waterloo, Ills. 
Nine children : 

i. Floyd Leslie," b. 11 Feb., 1881 ; d. 12 Sept., 1881. 

ii. Edwin Bennett, b. 13 April, 1882. 

iii. Grover, b. 18 Sept., 1884. 

iv. Horace Homer, b. 14 Oct., 1886; d. 27 May, 1891. 

V. James Addison, b. 14 Oct., 1888; d. 23 Sept., 1893. 

vi. Blanchard Banks, b. 14 Oct., 1891. 

vii. Nelson Carlisle, b. 13 Feb., 1894; d. 29 April, 1894. 

viii. Noah Claude, b. 19 Sept., 1896. 

ix. William Jewett, b. 21 Feb., 1900. 

143. Leverett Decatur Varnum' (Justus Bradley,^ 
Moses^ John Jr.,^ Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George^) of New Design, 
nis., b. 4 May, 1846; m. 28 April, 1887, Annie, daughter of 
John and Wilhelmina (Bornermann) Hesterburgof Burksville, 

One child : 

i. Alma Caroline,* b. 29 January, 1888. 

144. Justus Frederick Var^tjm (Justus Bradley,^ Moses^ 
John* Joseph,^ Samuelj' George^). Born in New Design, 111., 
where he lived for many years. Is now (1906) a resident of 
East St. Louis, lU.j married, 6 June, 1882, Barbara Ellen, 
daughter of Charles H. and Martha (Sipe) Judd of Winches- 
ter, Ind. 


Five children: 

i. Nora Viola/ b. 20 May, 1883. 

ii. Gladys, b. 7 June, 1885. 

iii. Edna May, h. May, 1888. 

iv. Earl Frederick, b. 22 March, 1890. 

V. Girard Couipton, b. 16 Dec, 1895. 

145. William N'elson Yarnum^ (FrescottJ Prescotl,^ 
Ebenezer^ Joseph,'^ Joseph,^ Samuel,^ Creorge}), born 13 Aug., 
1826; died at Vassar, Mich., 20 Oct., 1885; married, 31 Oct., 
18i7, Julia Hannah Russell of Viroil, N. Y.; born 19 July, 
1829. ^ 

Seven children : 

i. Lorinda Betsey,' b. 2 Dec., 1848 ; d. 3 Sept., 1869. 

160. ii. Prescott Leonard, b. 25 .July, 1850; m. Delia Steele, 

iii. Laura Elizabeth, b. 29 Dec., 1851 ; d. 7 Feb., 1852. 

iv. Julia Adclia, b. 8 May, 1853 ; m. George Smiley. 

V. William Joseph, b. 22 July, 1856 ; d. 30 Oct., 1856. 

vi. Mary Maroe, b. 26 June, 1858 ; m. Frank Lockwood. 

vii. Russell Douglass, b. 17 Dec., 1805. 

14G. Joseph Bradley Varntjm^ {Prescott,^ Prescott,^ Ehen- 
ezer,^\Tosq)h,' Josoph,^ Samuel,^ George'), born 19 May, 1830; 
died 20 Mar., 1890; married 8 Nov., 1856, ^laria E., daughter 
of Stephen Yibbart of Clyde, St. Clair Co., Mich. 

Four children: 

i. Olin Blanchard." 

ii. Celia. 

iii. Wilbur Fisk. 

iv. Antoinette. 



Adapted from the Michigan Christian Advocate, June 27, 1906. 

Although born in Canada, at Berlin, Waterloo Co., Province 
of Ontario, Mr. Varnura's parents were from Massachusetts. 
His great grandfather was Lt. Ebenezer Varnum, who fought 
in Capt. Peter Coburn's company from Dracutt, at the Battle 
of Bnnlicr Hill, and his grandfather was Col. Prescott Tarnum 
of the Regt. of the Seventh Massachusetts militia. His mother 
was the granddaughter of Col. John Brooks, who was killed 
by the Indians in the early history of our Country. 

In his boyhood he was so closely associated with the Ger- 
man settlers at Berlin, that their language became as familiar 
to him as his mother tongue. In 184:3 his parents removed to 
Metaraora, La Peer Co., Michigan. Here he attended the dis- 
trict school, housed in its building of logs, and also spent a 
term at the school at Romeo, at which place he taught two 
terms. In 18.51 he went to Albion, where he studied three 
years at the Wesleyan Seminary. He was ambitious to take a 
course at the State University at Ann Arbor, but poor health 
and want of means prevented his so doing. 

While teaching school in 1850, he felt impressed by a sense 
of duty, to consecrate his life to his Maker's service. To this 
end he Avas largely led by the influence of a pious mother, 
whose own life in Massachusetts had been moulded by religious 
surroundings. Her teachings guitled him in the paths of 
moral rectitude, and she nurtured the woi'kings of his mind to 
inward light and life. In the conviction that his life should be 
that of self-consecration, he made public confession at a place 
of worship — the same school house where he had studied and 
romped as a boy. He was made superintendent of the Sunday 
school and urged to enter the ministry. He was then twenty 


years old, and was baptized and received into the church at 
Oxford, bj the Kev. George Bradley. Because of his feeling 
of unfitness he declined several times a license to preach. In 
1857, at the earnest intercession of Kev. Joseph Blanchard, he 
took up the work of local preacher at Forrestville, on the Lake 
Michigan shore, from which point he had a circuit of mission- 
ary work reaching from Lexington to Bay City. He proved 
his fitness for his calling, from the very first, winning during 
the first year eighty souls to ('hrist. He formed classes at Port 
Sanilac, Cherry Creek, Forrestville, Sand Beach, Willow Creek 
and Port Austin, and travelled the first year of work 2500 
miles on foot. 

In 1855 he was received as a " practitioner " into the Michi- 
gan, and in 1857 into full membership in the Detroit conference, 
Bishop Waugh confirming him as Deacon. His appointments 
were: 1855, Brockway mission; 1856, Memphis; 1857-8, Rome; 
1859, Franklin. In 1800 he " located " and went to the State 
of Missouri to take work; but the Civil War breaking out, he 
returned to ^Michigan, was readmitted, and ap])()inted to Clarks- 
ton, in 1862 to Goodrich, in 1863 to Lainsburg. On March 
21, 1861, he enlisted in the 2d Michigan Volunteers, and served 
in the Army until mustered out in August, 1865, at the close 
of the War. He was with Granfs army at the siege of Peters- 
burg, and was wounded in the knee and shot through the hip. 

Resuming his life as a pi'eachcr, ho served 1805 at ISTorth 
Branch, 1807-8 at Rochester, 1809-70 at Williamstown, 1871 
at Southfield, 1872 at LTnadilla. In 1873 he was appointed at 
Oakville, but hoping to benefit his health, which had become 
impaired by reason of his wounds in the war, he removed to 
Albion, Iowa. Here he dwelt for eleven years, and having in 
1874 been placed among the "Superannuated," he took up and 
followed the pursuit of dairyman. In 1881, he removed to 
Gale, So. Dakotah, being among the pioneers in that State, 

282 VABisruM genealogy. 

where he became a farmer. He was highly esteemed among 
the settlers, and honored by an election to the State Legisla- 
ture, in which he became a member of influence, having been 
regarded as one of the best speakers in that body. He was 
buried at Gale, S. D., having passed out of life May 26, 1896. 

147. "VViiJ.iAM Pkescott Vakntum* (William,' Prescott,^ 
Ehenezer,^ Josejih* Joi^epli? Samuel,^ George^) lives in Cum- 
berland Mills, Me.; married (1) 1 Mar., 1853, Alice H., daugh- 
ter of Ebenezer and Alice (Stanwood) Dunning of Brunswick, 
Me.; died 15 June, 1881. Two children : 

i. Frank Prescott," m. Mildred M. Waldron. 
ii. Arthur Dunning. 

He married (2) Bertha J., daughter of John A. G. and Abbie 
A. (Negus) Cottrell, b. 7 Jan., 1863, d. 1 May, 1892. He 
married (3) Alice M., dau. of John W. and Charity Harrison 
of St. Stephen, N. B. One child : 

Bertha A., b. 19 May, 1900. 

148. Charles Albert Yarnum* {John, PrescoU,^ Ebene- 
zer,^ Joseph,'* Jof:eph,^ Sanniel,- George^), married 1 Dec, 1886, 
Mary Alice, daughter of Louisa D. and Lydia Moore. 

Three children: 

i. Georgia Moore,' b. at Fort Yates, N. D., 15 Dee., 1887. 
ii. Mary Lydia, b. at Fort Sill, Okla., 1 Jan., 1889; d. 16 

Jan., 1889. 
iii. John Prescott, b. at Fort Riley, Kas., 18 Feb., 1892. 

Charles Albert Yarnum was educated in Dracutt. He 
was appointed cadet at the United States Military Academy, 
1 Sept., 1868, from Florida, and graduated No. 17 in a class of 
fifty-seven, 14 June, 1872, and was commissioned Second Bieu- 
tenant, Seventh U. S. Cavalry, at that date, and made First 


Lieutenant, 5 June, 1876. He sewed as Regimental Quarter- 
master from 14: 'Nov., 1876, to 31 Oct., 1879. He was com- 
missioned Captain, 22 July, 1900; Major, 1 Feb., 1901; Lieu- 
tenant Colonel, 10 Ai)ril, 1905. He sailed under orders for 
the Philipi)ine Islands from San Francisco, 5 Sept., 1905. 

From his graduation uj) to 1890he was in constant and vigilant 
service against the Indians, under the commands of Generals 
Miles, Howard and Custer. He received a medal of honor from 
Congress " for most distinguished gallantry in action at White- 
day Creek, South Dakota, 30 Dec, 1890." This record ap- 
pears in the U. S. Army Register : " This officer was in com- 
mand of Troop B and a part of Troop E, Seventh U. S. Cavalry, 
the regiment then executing an order to withdraw by detach- 
ments before a superior force of hostile Indians. Captain Var- 
num saw that a continuance of the movement would result in 
exposure of another troop of his regiment to being cut o£F and 
surrounded. Disregarding his orders to retire, he placed him- 
self in front of his men, led a charge upon the advancing Indi- 
ans, regained a commanding position that had just been vacated, 
and thus insured the safe withdrawal of both detachments 
without further loss." 

14:9. John Prescott Vaknum^ {John^ Prescott,^ Ehenezer,^ 
Joseith,* Joscfli^ Samud,- George^), born 26 Feb., ISS-i; died 
5 Dec, 1888; married 14 Dec, 1875, Josephine Louise, daugh- 
ter of Christopher and Almira (Littlefield) Dyer of East 
Stoughton, ;Mass. 

Three children : 

i. Charles Archibald,' b.. 2.5 Feb., 1877. 
ii. Grace Dyer, b. 17 July, 1879. 
iii. Edith Christine, b. 9 March, 1883. 

John Prescott Varnum was a leading journalist of Jack- 
sonville, Fla., and connected with several leading papers in 


that State. He was a bright young newspaper man and wielded 
a versatile pen. He gave promise of distinguished success in 
his calling, until overcome by the deadly malaria of Florida. 
He died at his wife's home at Avon, Mass., at the early age of 
thirty-four years. 

150. John Arkwright Marshall Yarntcm' {Phineas 
Fox^ Phineas^ Ehenezer,^ Joseph,^ Joseph,^ Samuel^ Oeorge^), 
born and lives in Portland, Me. He was one of the youngest 
volunteers in the war of the Rebellion, and was mustered out 
of the Invalid Corps at its close; he married 31 Aug., 1865, 
Margaret Irving Stanford of Baltimore, Md. 

Five children : 

i. Elizabeth Josephine,' b. 9 June, 1866 ; d. 31 Aug., 1867. 

ii. LilHan, b. 1 June, 1868; d. 22 Oct., 1869. 

iii. Vivia, b. 18 Mar., 1870; d. 20 Aug., 1891 ; m. 15 Oct., 

1890, Charles L. Lewando of Boston. One child (Lew- 

ando) : 

Reginald Freeman, b. 4 Aug., 1891. 
iv. Charlotte Thomas, b. 12 Sept., 1876. 
V. Elizabeth Widgeiy, b. 1 Nov., 1878; m. 26 Apr., 1906, 

Rev. Herbert B. Pulsifer of Boston. 

151. Cn^uiLES Frederick Varxum® {Charles Bradley,^ 
Bradley,^ Bradley,^ Joseph* Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George,^), car- 
penter and builder; lives in Lowell, Mass.; married 25 Dec, 
1871, Abbie L., daughter of Reuben P. and Elizabeth (Griffin) 
Davis of Gloucester, Mass. 

Five children: 

i. Charles Frederick'," b. 26 Mar., 1873 ; d. 4 July, 1894. 

ii. Alice Davis, b. 20 June, 1878 ; d. 30 May, 1897. 

iii. Mabel Louise, b. 17 May, 1880. 

iv. Thomas Howard, b. 29 Nov., 1885. 

V. Percy Edwin, b. 7 Aug., 1887. 


152. Joseph Butterfield Yarkum® (Charles Bradley,'' 
Bi'adley,^ Bradley,^ Joseph* Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George^), car- 
penter and builder; lives in Lowell, Mass. ; married (1) 5 July, 
1869, Isabel E., daughter of Sherman M. and Sarah (Smith) 
Morey of Lowell ; died 17 June, 1890. 

Four children : 

i. Ethel Gertrude,' b. 6 June, 1870 ; d. 31 July, 1872. 

ii. Gertrude Mary, b. 9 May, 1873. 

iii. Albert Henry, b. 4 May, 1878 ; m. Oma A. Brown, 

iv. Joseph Belfield, b. 18 Apr., 1879; d. 9 Aug., 1879. 

He married (2) 18 Apr., 1892, Zadie, daughter of Stephen 
M. and Caroline (Stacy) Ketcham of Potsdam, N. Y. 

153. James Mitchell Vaenum* {Joseph' Bradley,'' James 
Mitchell,^ Joseph Bradley,^ Samuel* Joseph,^ Saiauel^ George^'), 
married 14 June, 1899, Mary Witherspoon, daughter of Charles 
Denston Dickey of Xew York and Mary Witherspoon his wife 
of Greensboro, Ala. 

James Mitchell Var^tum, eldest son of Hon. Joseph B. 
Varnum of New York, was born in the city of New York, and 
graduated from Yale University in the Class of 1868, and from 
the Law School of Columbia University in 1871. He has since 
been engaged in the practice of the law in the city of New 

In 1879 and 1880 he was a member of the New York Legis- 

In 1880 he was appointed by Governor Cornell as senior 
aide-de-camp on his staff, with the rank of Colonel, and on 
Jan. 1, 1895, he received from Governor Levi P. Morton a 
commission as Paymaster General of the State of New York, 
with the rank of Brisradier General in the National Guard. 

In February, 1899, Governor Theodore Roosevelt appointed 


him Surrogate (Judge of Probate) for the County of New 

Mr. Yarnum was in 1889 the candidate of the Republican 
party for Attorney General of the State, but was unsuccessful, 
although receiving about four hundred and ninety thousand 
votes, and running considerably ahead of his party ticket. 

In 1890 he was the candidate of the Republican and Anti- 
Tammany coalition for Judge of the Superior Court, but failed 
of an election, as did all of his associates upon the ticket. 

In 1891 he was elected as permanent chairman of the Re- 
publican State Convention at Rochester. 

Mr. Yarnum took a prominent part for many years in all 
the great national and international celebrations held in New 
York State and city. 

He was specially deputed by the Governor of New York to 
meet and receive General Grant on behalf of the State, on his 
return from his tour of the world. 

In 1881 he was appointed a member of the State commission 
to receive the distinguished French and German guests of the 
nation at the time of the Yorktown celebration, and as chair- 
man of the reception committee had personal charge of the 
guests during their stay in the State of New York. 

In 1883 he was one of the live gentlemen in charge of the 
centennial celebration of the evacuation of New York by the 
British, and in 1889 one of the five members of the managing 
committee of the great celebration of the centennial of the in- 
auguration of General Washington as President of the United 

In 1893 he was selected, although a Republican, by the 
Democratic Mayor of the city of New York as the manager of 
the great Columbian Naval Ball, given by the city to the officers 
of the fleets of ten foreign nations, at which about ten thousand 
people were present. 


In the same year he was also appointed by the Mayor of 
New York chairman of the sj^ecial reception committee in 
charge of her Koyal Highness the Infanta Enlalia of Spain, 
who was the guest of the nation as the specially deputed rep- 
resentative of the King of Spain to the Columbian Exposition, 
and in that capacity he prepared the plans for and had charge 
of the reception and entertainment of the Princess while in 
New York. 

In May, 1902, he organized and was chairman of the grand 
banquet given by the members of the Society of the Cincinnati 
to the members of the official mission sent by the French gov- 
ernment to this country on the occasion of the dedication of 
the Kochambeau monument in Washington. 

It is somewhat intei-esting to note the fact that Mr. Varnum 
received his commission as Brigadier General of militia 119 
years after his great grand uncle General James M. Vai-nura, 
and 93 years after his great grandfather General Joseph B. 
Varnum, received their similar commissions, and that he was 
appointed in like manner to a judicial position 112 years after 
the former and 10-4 years after the latter. 

General Varnum is a hereditary member of the old Order of 
the Cincinnati, founded by Washington and his officers in 
1783, and in 1800 was elected Vice President of the Rhode 
Island branch of that Order, succeeding in that position, after 
the lapse of 117 years, General James M. Varnum of the Con- 
tinental Army. 

He is also a member of several of the well known American 
patriotic societies and organizations, and is now (lOOG) Gov- 
ernor of the Society of Colonial Wars in the State of New York, 
and in January, 1903, was created by the French Government 
a chevalier of the Legion of Honor of France. 


154. Joseph Butler Yarnttm* {George Washington,'' 
Jacob Butler,^ Joseph Bradley,^ Samuel,^ Joseph^ Samitel^ 
C^eor^e'), lives and is in business in Rochport, Mo. ; married 
10 June, 1885, Martha Elizabeth, daughter of Benjamin F. and 
Mary E. (Gillum) Robertson of Foley, Lincoln Co., Mo. 

Five children : 

George Winthrop,' b. 17 Nov., 1889. 
Franklin Robertson, b. 19 Aug., 1893. 
Elizabeth Winthrop, b. 18 Sept., 1895. 
Varina Dorothy, b. 19 Aug., 1897. 
V. Joseph Bradley, b. 14 Aug., 1906. 

155. James Edgar Varnttm* ( George Washington^ Jacob 
Butler,^ Joseph Bradley,^ Samuel,* Joseph,^ Samuel,' George^), 
lives and is in business in Los Angeles, Cal.; married 22 Feb., 
1891, Mabel, daughter of Milton C. and Tacy C. (Frame) Star- 
buck of Barnesville, O. 

Two children : 

i. Marjorie Clara," b. 1 Nov., 1896. 
ii. Kathryn Starbuck, b. 21 May, 1902. 

156. JoHX Albim Varkiim^ {Leander,^ Moses,^ Moses,^ John,* 
Joseph,^ Samuel,~ George^), lives at Ironton, O. ; married, 28 
Dec, 1877, Ellen, daughter of William F. and Margaret (Hig- 
gins) McKnight. 

Two children : 

i. Frederic,' b. 20 Jan., 1879; m. Harriet Pease, 
ii. Ruth, b. 12 June, 1902. 

157. GiRARD CoMPTON Varitom' (Leander,'' Moses,^ Mbses,^ 
Johji,* Joseph,^ Samuel,^ George^), married 11 July, 1882, 
Clara W.. daughter of Benjamin and I^ancy Johnson, born 26 
Aug., 1852; died 1901. 


Two children: 

i. Benjamin,' b. 1 June, 1S83 ; d. in infancy. 

ii. Ernest Joliuston, b. 7 Nov., 1S8G ; d. 25 June, 1887. 

He married (2) 26 June, 1902, Emma, daughter of Thomas 
and Julia E. (Smith) Bay of Frankfort, O. 

GiEAHD CoMrTON Vaenum enlisted as a private in an Ohio 
regiment in 18(33, at the age of fifteen years, and served until 
Jan., 1866, when he was mustered out. After his return from 
the army he graduated from the National Normal University 
of the State of Ohio, and was a teacher for twelve years. He 
was elected County Auditor of Lawrence County, Ohio, in 
1890. He is now (1906) manager of the Great Atlantic and 
Pacific Tea Co. in Chicago, having under his charge the con- 
trol of eight stores. 

158. Leander Vaknum,* Jr. (Leander,' Moses,^ Moses,^ 
John,* Joseph,^ Samuel," George*), lives in Millers, O. ; married 
1879, Annie, daughter of Andrew and Martha (Dawson) 

Five children : 

i. George,' b. 15 May, 1880; m. Norma Burcham. 
ii. Mattie, b. 13 Sept., 1882 ; d. 2 Jan., 1887. 
iii. Vivian, b. 28 March, 1884. 
iv. Virgil, b. 17 Dec, 1885; d. 28 Oct., 1891. 
V. Jessie, b. 13 Nov., 1887. 

159. Edgar Whiting Varnum^ (Solomon Dixon,'' Jewett,* 
Moses,^ John,* Josephj^ Samuel,- George^) married 23 Nov., 
1902, Blanche M., daughter of Doris D. and Mary E. (Bur- 
gan) Whiting of Fort Jones, Cal. 

Two children : 

i. Doris Dixon,' b. 13 Dec, 1903. 
ii. Edgar Whiting, b. 6 Aug., 1905. 


Edgak Whiting was educated in the schools of San Fran- 
cisco. He is a mining engineer and millwright in California. 
His home is at Fort Jones. 

160. Peescott Leonard' ( William l^elson,^ Prescott,^ 
Prescott,^ Ehenezer^ Joseph* Joseph^ Scanuel,^ George^), 
born 25 July, 1850; lives at Vaesar, Mich.; married 4 Oct., 
1875, Delia Steele of Union, Ontario. 

Three children : 

i. Julia Estclle,'" b. 3 Mar., 1877. 
ii. Guy Nelson, b. 17 Aug., 1879. 
iii. Carrie Adelia, b. 31 Jan., 1884. 

161. George Vaenum" (Leander Jr.,^ Leander^ Moses ^ 
Moses,^ John* Joseph,^ Scmiuelj^ Geoi'ge^), hovn 15 May, 1880; 
a farmer; married 18 Oct., 1902, Norma Burcham. Lives in 
Millers, O. 

Two children : 

i. Inez,'" b. 6 Nov., 1903. 

ii. Girard Conipton, b. 29 June, 1906. 

2Ef)us !)atij hern gatfjcrct into one Jolt all of tfjc name of Uarnum, from 
©eorcje \s\)o, initf) Ijis fcoifc ftfannalj ant 1)13 rljiltren SamticI ant Pjannalj, 
lantet in Ipstoicl) in fflassarljuscttB on or about tlje gear 1635, tofan tfjrongi^ 
Samuel, Jjis son, ant STfjomas, Jiof)n ant J!o0ep{j, fjis grantsona, tofjo fountet 
JBracutt in iHassacljugrtts in 166^. 



[Family of Thomas from 27 to 42 ; of John, 45 to 114 ; of Joseph, 117 to 290.] 



Mary Jane, 35, 36, 308 

Moo4y B., 224 

Nehuraiah, 132 
Adair, Eliza, 97 
Adams, Nathan, 49 
Adkina, Elijah, 275 
Aiken, Ezekiel, 87 

Marv Ann, 184, 246 
Alden, Mary B., 103 
Allen, Alvm B., 104 

Addie Fletcher, 104 

Christopher, 49 

Helen M., 36, 104, 307 
Alvord, Mary, 73 

Ames, , 95 

Anderson, Climeuia, 100, 109 

Peter, 71 
Ansart, Julia, 136, 234 
Armstrong, Agnes, 104, HI 
Atkinson, Mary, 33 

Timothy, 7 1 

Bagley, Ephraim, 134 
Bailey, Elizabeth P., 134 
Baker, Charles, 229 
Baldwin, Cyrus, 68, 137 
Bamford, Mary, 183 
Barker, ]):iuiel, 227 

Sarah A., 261, 277 
Bamett, Anna, 134 

Carleton O., 134 

Clarissa, 134 

Eliza, 134 

Frye Bayley, 134 


Hannah, 134 

John D., 33, 306 

Persis, 134 

Kobert, 133 

Barron, Abiah Varnum, 129 

Abigail, 129 

Benjamin, 129 

Beiijamin Mitchell, 129 

De Lafayette, 129 

Elisha, 129 

Hannah, 129 

James Mitchell, 129,224 

John Varnum, 129 

Joseph Bradley, 129 

Lvdia, 129 

Martha, 129 

Martha Varnum, 129 

Marv, 21, 118 

Oliver, 129 

Samuel, 129 

Samuel Varnum, 129 
Barrows, Oliver, 234 
Bartlett, Moses, 87 

W. T. S., 308 
Batchelder, Joanna, 48 
Bav, Emma, 275, 289 
Bayles, Sarah E., 261, 277 
Belcher, M., 263 
BeU, , 97 

Asa Varnum, 97 

George, 97 


Joseph, 97 

Marv, 97 

Sarah, 97 

Walker, 97 

William, 125 
Bendick, Ilolsev, 224 
Benner, Ida M.,' 101, 110 
Bickford, Carrie E., 99, 108 

Susan. 100 
Blanchard, Ix)cada, 88, 99 
Blaisdell, William, 235 
Blood, Esther, 133 

Robert, 45, 68 

Bodwell, Charles, 33, 306 
Elizabeth B., 306 
Hannah P., 300 
Jane, 306 

Mary Varnum, 306 
Phebe Varnum, 306 
Sarah Ann, 33, 306 
Boedecker, Minnie, 261, 278 
Bovee, Mark, 107 
Bo wan, J. D., 275 
Bowers, Anna, 118, 126 
George, 35, 307 
John, 125 

Jonathan, 34, 35, 307 
Kitty A., 35, 307 
Minnie Brown, 34, 307 
Boyden, Lydia, 45, 66 
Boynton, Frank P., 225 
Braden, Thomas J., 107 
Bradford, Louise L., 94 
Bradlev, Amos, 228 
Caleb, 71 
Caroline, 184. 219 
Cyrus Augustus, 228 
George Prescott, 228 
John Varnum, 228 
Rebecca, 183 
Bragdon. Samuel, 181 
Brazer, Charles Hdward, 72 
Elizabeth Varnum, 72 
Ellen, 72 
Henrietta, 72 
James, 72 
John, 72 

Mary Saltonstall, 72 
William FarwcU, 72 
William Phillips, 72 
Surah Farwell, 72 
Bridges, Eleanor, 51, 78 
Briggs, Alanson, 225 
Charles E., 225 



Brooks, Francis A., 71 
Brown, Alpheus R., 249 

Dorcas, 51, 70 

Eunice. 126, 133, 134 

(jrace Caroline, 249 

Harriet, 99 

Jane, 183 

Josiah, 183, 184 

Marv, 33, 34 

Sarah, 99 

William, 184 
Bryant, Charles, 134 
Burcham, Norma, 289, 290 
Bucte, Henry, 114 
Burbiink, Joseph, 224 
Burroughs, Mary, 134 
Busbv, Anna L., 247, 273 
Butler, Caleb, 71 

Charles Varnum, 71 

Clarissa, 71 

Edith May, 264 

Frances, 71 

George, 71 

George D., 264 

Henrietta, 71 

Mollv, 128, 181 

Polly, 129, 224 

Rebekah, 71 

Sarah, 87 

Susan, 71 

William, 71 
Butterfield, Rachel, 126, 136 

Sarah, 126, 132 

Cahill, Marv, 99, 107 
Carr, Mary A., 101, 110 
Carter, Lydia, 183 

Martha J., 225 
Chamberlain, tlosiah, 226 

Warren, 226 
Chamberlin, Benjamin A., 133 

Dorcas, 133 

Enoch Lane, 133 

Phineas, 133 

Phineas Whiting, 133 

Lydia Smith, 133 
Chandler, Mehitable, 97, 104 
Chandler, Joseph, 73 
Chanpliii, Harriet, 90, 100 
Chapdue, Olivia, 257 
Chase. Roscoe L., 308 

Chickering, William, 224 
Child, Martha, 128, 141 
Clark. Betsey, 99 

James, 99 

Mary L., 99 

Sophronia, 99 

Thomas George, 99 
Clements, Elizabeth, 228, 262 
Coburn, Abel, 234, 306 

Adeline X., 225 

Bartlett, 33, 306 

Benj. Varnum, 73 

Keuj. Sherburn, 73 

Czarina, 33. 305 

Eleanor Bridges, 79 

Elizabeth C, 234 

EmUy, 183 

Ephraim, 183 

Fannv W., 33, 305 

George W., 183 

Hannah Augusta, 183 

Henry Dearborn, 183 


Jeremiah Varnum, 33,305 

Jesse, 234 

John Hancock, 183 

John M.. 35, 305 

Jonas. 68 

Joseph B. v., 183 

I-auretta, 183 

Lillian A., 305 

Marquis de L., 228 

Mary, 126, 133, 183 

Mary Almira, 183 

Mary Jane, 79 

Peter, 3.t, 50. 305 

Peter Sullivan, 33, 305 

Robert Parker, 33, 305 

Samuel A., 79, 183 

Simon, 182 

Thomas Jefferson, 183 

Timothy V,->mtrm, 33,305 
Colburn, Aaron, 27 

Timothy, 27 

Abraham, 21 

Deborah, 27 

Daniel, 27 

Eleazer, 27 

Ezrii, 20, 21 

Hannah, 21, 27 

Jacob, 27 

Colbum (continued) 

James, 117, 118 

John, 21 

Mary, 27 

Ruth, 118 

Samuel, 21 

Sarah, 21, 68, 86, 118 

Thomas, 27, 118 
Colby, 87 
Collins, A. J., 264 
Collision, James, 224 
Colston, Lucy L, 105, 112 
Colton, John Jay, 308 

Nellie Varnum, 35 

Alice Maria, 35 
Corhorn, Emma M., 278 
CottrcU, Bertha J., 282 
Cram, Lucy P., 100, 109 
Craytey, Julia, 105, 111 
Cummings, Ebenezer, 27 
Cutter, .Fohn P., 96 

John Varnum, 96 

Dana, David, 88 

Josiah, 98 

Elijah Varnum, 98 

Frank, 98 

Julia A., 98 

Mary E., 98 
Davis. Abbie L., 266, 284 

Mary Jane, 93, 101 
Darling, Mary A., 258, 275 
Dean, Ichabod, 100 

Sarah, 132, 227 
Dearboi-n, Abigail, 45, 69 
Dcfoor, Charles, 257 
de Rose, Edward, 236, 267 

Edward Livingston, 236 

Susan, 236 

Susan Rose, 267 
Dickey, Albert Prescott, 133 

Charles, 133 

George Reed, 133 

George Wallace, 133 

Gilman, 133 

Hannah W'hiting, 133 

Henry, 133 

James Varnum, 133 

Jane Wallace, 133 

John, 133 

John Pinkerton, 133 



Dickey (continued) 
Mary W., 267, 285 
Matthew Wallace. 133 
Phineas Whiting, 133 
Sarah Clarissa, 133 
William Gage, 133 

Dillon, Reese B., 2o7 

Dinsmore, Abel, 140 
Augusta Ann, 228 
Sarah, 229, 263 

Dixon, Gilbert, 67 
Rachel, 227, 260 
Sarah Ann, 227, 260 

Doble, William, 68 

Dodamead, Catharine, 184, 

Doe, Amos W'., 139 
Charles, 139 
Cyrene, 139 
Harrison, 139 
Leonard, 140 
Mary, 139 
Otis, 139 
Sarah Jane, 140 
Stephen, 140 
William, 140 

Dole, Estella, 108, 114 

Downes, Frances, 225 

Drown, George, 258 

Druse, Agnes A., 261, 277 

Dunning, Alice H., 263, 282 

Durgin, Sarah, 226 

Durant, Sarah A., 73 

Dutton, Er\illa, 93, 101 

Dyer, Josephine L„ 264, 283 

East, Abigail, 68, 86 

Anna, 68, 85 
Eastman, Adeline, 73 
Eaton, Anna F., 78 

Isabel Varnum, 94 

Joseph Giles, 94 

W'. P., 72 
Edwards, Chester C, 113 
Elliott, Clarissa, 87 

Richard A., 225 

Polly, 131 
Emerson, Samuel, 89 
Evans, Elvira, 260, 276 

Louisa, 260 

Martha A., 247, 273 

Fnlkenburg, H. S., 107 

Lydia, 107 
Farrington, Sarah, 49 
Ferguson, James. 139 
Fink, Harriet V. R.C., 102,1 1 
FinneU, Edward P., 229 
Fish, Lydia, 183 
Fisher, Mark B., 257 
Fiske, Betty. 67 

Daniel, 67 

Josiah, 67 

Marv, 67 

Micah, 67 

Nathan, 67 

Sarah, 67 

Varnum, 67 

Walter, 67 
Fletcher, Florence E., 257 

J. Tyler, 235 

Jonathan, 228 

Marv, 72 
Foran, William H., 224 
Ford, Elmer S., 105 

Fowler S., 105 

Jonas Varnum, 105 

Mehitable, 35, 308 
Foster, Lucretia, 228 
Fox, Hannah, 83, 93, 126, 132 

Jenny Maria, 102 

John', 265 

Marv Ann, 225 

Prudence, 134, 230 
Frost, Josiah, 227 

Gage, Abel, 139 

Rebecca S,, 234, 266 
Gale, Benjamin, 78 

Benj. Franklin, 78 

Eleanor Varnum, 78 

James Varnum, 78 

John Varnum, 78 

Levi Bartlett, 78 

Ruth, 78 

Ruth Carter, 78 
Galloway, Irene, 107, 113 
Gates, liarriet S., 105, 113 
Getchell, Abby, 95, 103 
Gibson, Caroline, 78 
Gilman, George AV., 183 

Susan, 227 
Gibson, John, 78 

GUfillan, Jemima, 99-108 

Marietta E , 99, 109 

Mary, 99, 108 
Gilson, Eunice, 85, 95 
Goodenough, Asa, 87 

Jane, 87 

Peter, 87 

Phineas, 87 

Stephen, 87 
Goodhue, Mary, 27, 30 

Rachel, 118, 125 
Gooding, Benjamin, 85 
Graham, Mary Ann, 184, 235 

Susan M., 243, 267 
Gray, James A., 265 

Samuel, 140 
Green, Charles, 257 

Nancy E., 230, 264 
Greenleaf, PhUlip, 134 

Moses, 49 
Griffin, Abigail, 96 
Griffith, Annie, 275, 289 
Gunther, Franklin L., 236 

Hale, Persis, 129, 223 
Hamblett, Abbv, 33, 306 

Cyrus, 34 ,' 306 

Daniel Varnum, 33, 306 

John P., 34, 306 

Oliver, 34, 306 

Theodore, 33, 306 
Hand, Frances M., 105, 112 
Hardy, Abigail, 45, 68 
Harper, Clara, 257 
Harriman, Lydia Ann, 139 
Harris, William, 30 
Harrison, Alice M., 282 
Harvey, Betsey. 98, 106 

Charles D., 100 

Duncan C, 99 

Etta Elvira, 100 

George B. McC, 100 

Lou Ella, 100 

Nellie Mary, 100 
Haskell. Elbridge G., 140 
Hatch, Almira, 133 
Hesterburg, Anna, 261, 278 
HUdreth, 27 

Fisher A., 183 

Josiah, 128 

Prudence, 61, 78 



Hildreth (continued) 

Susannah, 224, 257 
HilJ, Helen, 243 

Mary Isabel, 243 

Silas Holmau, 243 
Hills, Peter, 69 
Hodges, James, 263 
Hotchkiss, H. Maria, 72 
Howard, Charles, 136 

Caroline, 136 

Catharine, 235 

Clarissa, 136 

Mary, 136 

Harriet, 136 

Jacob, 136 
Howe, Alice Lydia, 250 

Benjamin V., 250 

Edward Sawyer, 96 

Mary Belle, 250 

Moses G., 250 
Hovcv, Augustus, 230 

George H., 265 
Hoyt, John, 87 
Huggins, Freeman, 73 
Hull, William H., 73 
Humphrey, Minna, 112 
Hunt, Walter M., 224 

Sarah, 182 

Ingersoll, Catherine S., 267 
Irish, Amie Fyson, 273 
George S.', 273 
Cecil Varnum, 273 
Percy Busby, 273 

Jackman, Henry, 235 

Sarah, 139,' 235 
Jackson, Ann M., 139 

William T., 235 

Robert, 30 
Jewett, Frank E., 307 

Joanna, 21, 27 

Ruth, 21, 117 
Johnson, Anna Moody, 139 

Ezekiel, 134 

Mary Ann, 139 

Nancv, 49 

Ruth'Moody, 138, 234 

William, 138 
Johnston, Clara W., 275, 288 
Jourdan, John, 230 

Judd, Barbara Ellen, 261, 278 

Kelaey, Sarabel G., 101 
Ketcham, Zadie, 266, 285 
Kingsbury, Cyrus, 72 

John Parker, 72 
Kimball, Elizabeth A., 99, 107 
Kinney, Emily, 97 
Kilburn, Martha B., 94, 102 
Knight, Calvin P.. 263 

Ladd, Charles D., 99 

Harvey E., 99 

Seneca, 99 
Lakin, Nathaniel, 103 
Lang, Sarah A., 109 
Lane, Ezekiel, 69 
Langton, Sarah, 16, 20 
Lawrence, Clara M., 99, 109 

Doctor, 97 
Lee, Marietta, 230, 264 
Lemen, Moses, 227 
Leete, Sarah E., 257 
Lewando Chas. L., 284 

Reginald Freeman, 284 
Lindsay, David, 129 
I,ittletield, Nathaniel, 71 
Libbie, Cynthia, 225 
Livingston, William, 139 
Lockwood, Frank, 279 
Lo\ve, Joseph T., 236 
Lowrey, Henrietta A., 103 
Ljnnan, Mary, 72 

Mansur, John, Jr., 131 

Samuel, 129, 131 
Martin, Frances E., 140 
Mason, Angelina C, 258, 275 
Marshall, Horatio W., 34, 307 

Phillis M., 78 
MacAUister, Elizabeth, 133, 

McAdams. Martha, 51, 79 
McCalla, John M., 243 
McCall, Maggie, 108 
McComas.Nannie A., 276 
McCoy, Martha, 73, 93 
McClure, Alexander, 89 

Frederic, 89 

Martha, 89 

Moses Varnum, 89 

McDermid, Archibald, 86 
McDermit, A., 87 
McDole, Robert, 86 

Thos., 85 
McDormitt, 98 
McGaw, Jacob, 50 
McKnight, Ellen, 275, 288 
McLachlin, Charles F., 106 

James, 99 
McLellan, Aaron, 87 

Benjamin, 87 

Daniel, 87, 98 

Dorothy, 87 

Duncan, 87 

Elizabeth, 87 

Hannah, 87 

John, 87 

Joseph, 87 

Julia, 98 

Louis, 98 

Moses, 87 

Rebecca, 87 

Sarah, 87 

WUliam, 87 
McNabb, Alice, 307 
McQuesten, Eliza, 83, 93 
Meader, Harriet E., 257 
Melvin, Elmira, 228, 261 
Mercer, Lucy, 132, 227 
Merrill, Ann Moody, 49 

George E., 263 

Mary, 49, 87 

Samuel, 235 
Meyer, Henrietta Graham,236 
Mitchell, Abiah, 118, 126 

Hannah, 118, 128 

James, 79 
Miller, Jane, 183 
Mongovan, Ann, 250 
Moore, Anna, 85, 97 

James, 133 

Mary Alice, 264, 282 
Moores, Peter, 70 
Morgan, Charles, 183 
MorriU, Elisha, 78 
Morrison, Robert, 229 
Morse, Julia E., 78 

Mary 88, 98 
Mosher, Abijah, 67 
Mott, Emma, 236 

Henry, 236 



Mott (continued) 

Henry A., 236 

Joseph Varnum, 236 

Mary, 236 

Louisa, 236 
Moivry, Isabel G., 266, 270 

Nelson, Lucy, 21 

Noyes, Caroline Persis, 224 

Charles D. Varnum, 224 

Ellen Varnum, 224 

Emily, 224 

Fanny. 224 

Frederick. 223 

Hannah Varnum, 224 

Lydia Jane, 224 

JIarv, 224 

Sarah, 224 
Nutting, Benjamin, 67 

John, 50 
Nye, Mill, 227 

Osgood, Abiah, 51, 73 
Emma W., 96, 103 
Timothy, 235 

Park, Mar)-, 83, 94 
Parker, Anna M., 229 

Charles Frederick, 95 

Edmund, 66 

FredF., 95 

Henrietta E., 95 

Henry Alfred, 95 

Lydia, 66 

Phebe, 45, 48 

Polly, 5 1 

Mary, 128, 139 

Mercy, 183 
Page, Calvin, 139 
Palmer, Emeline, 87 
Patten, Elizabeth, 69, 89 
Patterson, Ebenezcr, 87 

Emma, 258 

James, 258 

John, 258 

Sarah, 258 

William E., 258 
Pcabody, Ephraim S., 98 

Anna L., 96 
Pease, Harriet, 288 

Mary, 184, 242 

Phelps, Timothy, 133 
Pickell, Kate, 104 
Pierson, Mattie A., 104, 111 
Platts. Abel, 118 

Samuel, 117 
Poor, Benjamin, 48 

Betsey, 49 

Dolly, 49 

Dorothy, 49 

Ebenezer, 49 

Elizabeth. 50 

James, 49 

Lvdia, 49 

Pitty, 48, 49 

Persis, 49 

Phebe, 48 

Phebe Varnum, 50 

Samuel, 49 

Susan, 49 

Susannah, 49 

Sylvanus, 49 

William, 49 
Porter, Arabella Coburn, 90 
Potter, Sarah, 90, 100 
Presbury, Lucy, 228, 262 
Prescott, Nancv, 224, 256 

Dorothy, 21, 45 
Prime, Mary, 118, 128 
Pulsifer, Herbert B., 284 

Reed, Phidelia, 87 
Reese, Retta, 276 
Reichman, Anna Irma, 276 

CecU Adolph, 276 

Frederick, 276 

Gustav A., 276 
Richardson, Andrew, 229 

Calvin, 229 

Charles A., 35 

Cyrus, 229 

Dana, 182 

David, 229 

Edward E., 229 

Elizabeth Jane, 229 

Ephraim 0„ 230 

Franklin, 229 

Frances, 229 

George Augustus, 229 

Henry Edward, 229 

Josiah, 27 

Lorenzo, 229 

Richardson (continued) 

Lydia, 133, 229 

Mary, 21 

Phineas, 229 

Prescott v., 229 

Samuel, 228 

Samuel Wood, 229 
Ricord, Lucy, 96 
Robbins, John D., 33, 306 

Fatima, 98, 105 
Robertson, Martha E., 273, 

Robie, Anna. 69, 88 
Rockvvood, "Walter, 182 
Rowe, Lucy, 88, 100 

Samuel H., 134 
Ross, John Wesley, 226 
Rugg, Samuel S„ 33, 306 
Russell, Julia H., 263, 279 
Ryan, John, 277 

Saltonstall, Mary C, 71, 90 
Sanborn, Hiram A., 105 
Sargent, Moses, 70 

Nathan, 243 
Sawyer, Isaac, 100 
Saxon, Susan, 97 
Shannon, D. F., 224 
Shaw, Carrie F„ 257 
Shead, Rebecca, 45, 68 
Sheple, Abner, 95 

Mary, 66 
Shipley, Ella, 107, 113 

Nancv, 85, 95 
Sherman, Chas. A., 250 
Shields, Ann, 227, 260 
Skelton, Benjamin, 96 
Srailev, George, 279 
Smith. William, 183 

Zacheus, 97 
Somers, William W., 106 
Spaulding, Phebe, 136. 233 

Rebecca. 67, 85 
Spencer, Nathaniel, 87 
Stacey, Sophia, 227, 257 
Stanford, Margaret 1 , 265, 

Stanton, Abbv L., 108, 113 
Starbuck, Mabel D„273, 288 
Staule, Ann, 118. 131 
Stearns, Charles Oliver, 73 



Stearns (continued) 

Daniel, 100 

Dorcas Ann, 73 

George Parker, 73 

Laurens, 73 

Luther, 73, 100 

Mary Elizabeth, 73 

Oliver, 72 

Susan M. C, 73 

William Henry, 73 
Stephens, Jennie, 111, 114 

Louis J., 265 

Phiiieas Vamum, 265 
Stevens, Benjamin, 60 

Betsey, 49 

Brinsley, 224 

Dolly, 85, 96 

George, 96 

James, 129 

John Vamum, 50 

Jonathan, 50 
Steele, Delia, 279, 290 
Stocker, Dennis, 263 
Storer, Martha J., 93, 101 
Storey, Elisha, 235 

Franklin, 235 
Swan, Nathan, 49 
Swett, Benjamin H., 182 

Charles, 182 

Daniel, 181, 182 

Elizabeth, 182 

EUzabeth A. A., 182 

EmUy, 182 

Harriet, 181 

Hitty Varnum, 182 

Mary Butler, 181 

Sarah Bradley, 191 

Taylor, Agnes Mary, 276 
Cecil Vamum, 276 
Gladys B., 276 
Gilbert E. R,. 276 
Helen M., 243, 267 
Samuel Harold, 276 
Samuel R., 276 
Thomas Edgar, 276 

Tenney, Augusta Coburn, 224 
Harriet Varnum, 224 
Emma Brown, 226 
Franklin, 225 
Georgette A., 226 
Paul, 224 

Tibbetts, Harriet, 250 

Sarah Frances, 251, 274 
ITiisseU, Daniel, 224 

Daniel Varnum, 224 

Charles A., 225 

Jane Coburn, 225 

John Wallace, 225 

Franklin Tenney, 225 

George Nelson, 225 

Lydia Ann, 225 

M'ary Ellen, 225 

Orphah, 225 

Prudence A., 225 

William H. H., 225 
Thomas, Elizabeth, 231, 265 
Thomburg, Daisy, 276 

Frederick, 275 

J. T., 275 

J. M., 276 
Tolin, Edith Olive, 260 

Emma L., 260 

Lemuel L., 2fi0 

Mary A., 260 

John v., 260 

Nancy E.. 260 

Ninia'n E., 260 

Rufus L„ 260 
Tuck, Ed^vard, 183 
Tucker, Betsey B., 96, 103 
Tufts, Sarah, 183 
Turner. Adelaide S., 267 

Albert O., 2-57 

Lyman C, 257 

Senora, 257 

Thomas, 257 

Victor, 257 

Victoria, 257 
Tuttle, E. Belle, 107, 113 
Tyler, Jacob, 49 

Ulrick, Harry W., 273 
TJnderhUl, Frances T., 236 

James Vamum, 236 

lames W., 236 

Mary Louise, 236 
Underwood, Abby Ann, 96 

Thomas D., 96 

Thomas J., 96 

Vabntm, Abi, 138 

Abiah, 68, 126, 129 
Abiah Mitchell, 137 

Vabntm (continued) 

Abigail, 68,69, 86, 87, 129 

140, 183 
Abraham, 20, 45, 67, 68, 

86 97 
Adeline, 96, 235, 275 
Albert Henry, 266, 285 
Alice, 106 
Almira, 99 
Almira Mercy, 231 
Alice Davis, 284 
Alma Caroline, 278 
Alpheus Franklin, 250 
Amy Lenox, 267 
Ann Louisa, 243 
Anna. 85, 132 
Anne, 95, 100 
Annie Emma, HI 
Anselm, 258, 275 
Antoinette, 279 
Archibald Oakley, 229, 

Arthur Clayton, 36 
Arthur Dunning, 282 
Arthur Solomon, 276 
Asa, 68,85,86,96,97,98, 

104, 138 
Asenath, 139 
Atkinson Clayton, 36, 36 
Augusta, 96 
Austin Dixon, 261, 277 

Benjamin, 68, 131, 289 
Benjamin B., 261, 277 
Benj. Franklin, 99, 104, 

109, 184, 249, 250 
Bertha A., 282 
Bessie, 106 
Betsey, 85, 87, 133 
Betsey Jane, 100 
Blanchard Banks, 278 
Blanche, 113 
Bradley, 126, 136, 234 
Burton Wyman, 114 
Byron Guy, 108, 113 
Bryant, 83' 

Carl R., 278 
Caroline Bradley, 249 
Carrie Adelia, 290 
Carrie Emily, 109 
Carrie Louise, 278 



Varncm (continued) 
Catharine, 273 
Celia, 279 

Charles, 73,96,99, 137 
Charles Albert, 264. 282 
Charles Archibald, 283 
Charles Bickford, 109 
Charles Bradlev, 234, 266 
Charles Butler; 226 
Charles Edwin, 101, lU 
Charles Frederick, 266, 

Charles Henry, 93, 101 
Charles Jnmes, 103 
Charles Payne, 106 
Charlotte, 96 
Charlotte Ann, 235 
Charlotte R., 229 
Charlotte Thomas, 284 
Charlotte Vivia, 265 
Christopher C, 261 
Clara E., 106 
Clarissa, 71 
Clarissa Sophia, 230 
Clark, 107, 113 
Clark Shipley, 113 
Cyrus, 96, 103, 277 
Cyrus David, 104 
Czarina Cobum, 35, 308 

Daniel, 34, 129, 223,224, 

256, 306 
Daniel HUdreth, 256, 257 
Deborah, 30, 118 
Diodamia, 85 
Dorcas, 51, 71, 72, 133 
Doll V, 50, 71, 85, 87,97, 

100, 132 
Doris Dixon, 289 
Dorothy, 45 

Earl Frederick, 279 
Ebenezcr, 126, 132 
Edgar Whiting, 276, 289 
Edith Christine, 283 
Ednah, 33, 306 
Ednah Ilarablett, 35, 308 
Edna Mar, 279 
Edward C„ 101, 110 
Edward Chester, 110 
Edward Payson, 93, 101 

Vakntjm (continued) 
Edwin Bennett, 278 
Edwin Bradley, 2G6 
Eleanor, 79, 183, 234 
Eleanor Elsie, 278 
Electa Isadora, 105 
Elias Thomas, 265 
Elizabeth, 67, 68, 137,228 
Elizabeth Josephine, 284 
Elizabeth Marv, 263 
Elizabeth Morse, 235 
Elizabeth Widgery, 265, 

Elizabeth Wimble, 234 
Elizabeth Wiuthrop, 288 
Elvira, 263 
Ernest E., 112 
Ernest Johnston, 289 
Esther, 28, 106 
Ethel Gertrude, 285 
Ethel Stephens, 114 
Emma, 275 
Emily, 263 
Eugene Murray, 106 
Eunice, 95, 235 

Fanny, 229 
Fanny M., 110 
Festus Franklin, 273 
Franklin, 98, 104, 106 
Frank Benjamin, 104,110 
Frank Louis, 111 
Frank Prescott, 282 
Franklin M., Ill, 114 
Franklin W.H., 105, 111 
Franklin Robertson, 288 
Frederic C, 109 
Frederick, 137, 227, 288 
Frederic Stevens, 108 
Frederick F.. 101 
Freeland Gardner, 101 
Flora Fatima, 106 
Floyd Leslie, 278 

George, 15, 20, 99, 289, 

George A., 101 
George Alonzo, 106, 277 
George Bradley 273 
George Cornell, 266 
George Lawrence, 109 

Varnum (continned) 
George Stevens, 96 
George Washington, 97, 

100, 109, 183, 247,260, 

George Winthrop, 288 
Grace Dyer, 283 
Grosvenor Chanplin,101, 

Grover, 278 
Georgia Moore, 282 
Georgiana, 106 
Georgiana Julia, 265 
Gertrude, 265 
Gertrude Mary, 285 
Girard Compton, 276, 

279, 288, 290 
Gladys, 279 
Guy Nelson, 290 
Guy Robert, 113 

Hannah 16, 20, 28, 33, 
45, 50, 67, 93, 96, 98, 
128, 133, 183,223,227, 
228, 305 
Hannah Elvira, 257 
Hannah Jane, 235 
Hannah Sylvia, 105 
Harold Abbott, 36 
Harriet, 224, 234 
Harriet Ann, 103 
Harriet Chanplin, 1 10 
Harriet Louisa, 104 
Harriet Swett, 182 
Harvey Blanchard, 99, 

Harvev William, 108,113 
Hattie" Ellen, 1 1 1 
Helen, 36 

Helen Carlotta, 265 
Helen Josephine, 265 
Helen Louise, 267 
Hcnrv. 230, 264 
Henry C, 110 
Henry Clay, 250 
Hcnrv Jiiniis, 108 
Hiram Chandler, 104,111 
Hitlv, 181 

Horace Addison, 261,277 
Horace Homer, 278 
Horace Wood, 277 



Varni'M (continued) 
Homer Percival, 263 

Inez, 290 
Irma Lee, 265 
Isaac Kimball, 107 

Jacob Butler, 184, 246 
Jacob Guv, 99, 108 
James 45, 51, 69, 73, 78, 

88, 100, 128, 2-28, 261 
James Addison, 278 
James Brown, 35, 307 
James Edgar, 273, 288 
James Ward, 275 
James Hildreth, 257 
James Lorimcr, 236 
James Mitchell, 128, 141, 

185,226,242,244, 260, 

267, 285 
Jane, 28, 95 
Jane Coburn, 35, 308 
Jane Mary, 107 
Jennette, 112 
Jennie L., 276 
Jeremiah, 33, 35, 306, 308 
Jessie, 112, 239 
Jewett, 132, 227, 260 
Joanna, 27 
Joel, 132 
John, 21, 45, 48, 50, 69, 

71, 85, 88, 89, 90, 95, 

98, 103, 105, 112, 118. 

131, 227, 230, 264, 275 
John Abrara, 105 
John Albim, 275, 288 
John A. M., 265, 284 
John Carlisle, 261 
John Cottrell, 114 
John G.. 257 
John Gage, 104, 111 
John Hancock, 184 
John Hand, 112 
John JaT, 90 
John Marshall, 250 
John Parker, 93, 101 
John Prescott, 264, 282, 

Jonas, 45, 51, 66, 67, 82, 

83, 85, 93. 95 
Jonas Galusha, 105 

Varnum (continued) 
Jonas Parker, 94 
Jonas Spaulding, 85, 95 
Jonathan, 68, 85, 95, 97, 

Joseph, 21, 117,118,125, 

120, 138, 234 
Joseph Bradley, 95, 103, 

128, 181, 184, 235,236, 

243, 250, 257, 263, 267, 

279, 288 
Joseph Belfield, 285 
Joseph Butler, 273, 288 
Joseph Butterfield, 136, 

233, 235, 266, 285 
Joseph Parker, 102 
Joshua, 224, 257 
Joshua Burrage, 257 
Josiah, 69, 88, 100 
Julia, 98, 104. 106 
Julia Adelia, 279 
Julia Ansart. 234, 306 
Julia Augusta. 234 
Julia Estelle. 290 
Julia Mathilda, 236 
Justus Bradley, 227, 260 
Justus Frederiek, 261, 

Justus Warren, 278 

Kathryn Starbuck, 288 
Laura, 106 
Laura Ann, 229 
Laura Augusta, 229, 263 
Laura Elizabeth, 279 
Laura Ethel, 278 
Laurent K., 113 
Lawrence Phineas, 265 
Leander, 258, 275, 289 
Leonard R., 105, 112 
Leverett Decatur, 261, 

Lillian, 284 
Lilli;, 277 

Lizzie Sophronia, 107 
Lorinda Betsey, 279 
Loring Herbert, 260 
Lottie Goldsborough,273 
Louis C, 276 
Louisa, 96 
Louisa Graham, 236 

Vaknum (continued) 
Lucretia, 73 
Lucy, 68 
Lulu May, 113 
Lydia, 49, 66, 100 
Lvdia Ann, 256, 264 
Lyd'.a Emily, 230 
Lydia Jane, 107 
Lydia Worcester, 250 
Lyman, 100 

Mabel Louise, 284 
MadUlaF., 109 
Margaret, 99 
Margaret Ann, 236 
Margaret Isabel, 261 
Margaret Sarah, 99 
Maria Prudence, 35, 308 
Marianne Jane, 110 
Marjorie Clara, 288 
Mark, 99, 108 
Martha, 45, 67, 89, 126, 

Martha A., 106 
Martha Adoline, 96 
Martha BeUe, HI 
Martha Bradstreet, 138, 

Mary, 27, 30, 33, 67, 70, 
118, 128, 129,227,228, 
262, 276 

Marv Anne, 34, 94, 97, 
258, 307 

Mary Bradstreet, 138 

Mary Butler, 243, 250 

Mary Dole, 114 

Mary E., 106 

Mary Eliza, 105 

Marv Elizabeth 36, 263, 

Mary Fenton, 275 

Mary Grace, 36 

Mary Jane, 234, 236, 247 

Mary Johnson, 235 

Mary Locada, 109 

Mary Louise, 102 

Mary Lydia, 282 

Mary ilaroe, 279 

Mary Martha, 106 

Mary Parker, 140 

Mary Pease, 90 



Vaknum (continued) 
Mary S., 98 
Mathilda, 27 7 
Mattie, 289 
Mav, 111 

Mehitable, 28, 131, 226 
Mehitable Maria, 35, 308 
Mercy, 27 , 85, 87, 137 
MoUy, 182 
Moses, 100,109,132,227, 

257, 258, 275 
Myrtic, 276 

Nancy, 228 
Nancy S., 275 
Nathaniel, 83 
Nathaniel Saltonstall, 90 
Nehemiah, 30 
Nellie A., 113 
Nelson Carlisle, 278 
Noah Claude, 278 
Nora Viola, 279 

Obediah Richardson, 230 
Olive, 30, 276 
Olive Isabel, 278 
Olin Blanchard, 279 
Oliver P., 34, 307 
Orlando, 258 
Orrin, 99 

Parker, 51, 70, 73, 93 
Pascal. 98 
Percy Edwin, 284 
Persis Adoline, 257 
Persis Hale, 129, 224 
Peter, 61, 69,89 
Phcbe, 48, 183, 184 
Phebe Parker, 72 
Phebe Spaulding, 235 
Phineas, 88, 99, 134, 229, 

Phineas Fox, 231, 265 
Phineas George, 107 
Phineas Isaac Keys, 109 
Pollv, 71, 83, 89, 100, 

Prescott, 133, 228, 262 
Prescott Leonard, 279, 

Prudence, 78, 87, 98 
Prudence Almira, 265 
Prudence Ford, 36, 308 

Vaiutom Ccontinued) 
Prudence Gale, 224 
Prudence Harris, 231 

Rachel, 30, 85, 88, 125, 

136, 139 
Rebekah, 85, 227 
Rebecca Arms, 251 
Rhoda, 133 
Richard Saltonstall, 90, 

100, 110 
Robert Monroe, 114 
Robert Taylor, 267 
Russell Douglass, 279 
^'Ruth, 87, 117, 131, 288 - 
''^ Ruth Moody, 235 
Sally Johnson, 234 

Samuel, 16,20,27,30.33, 

118, 128, 139, 140, 235 
Samuel Chandler, 1 1 1 
Sarah, 27, 33, 45, 50, 67, 

68,70,86, 106,117,131, 

133, 227, 306 
Sarah Ann, 235, 258 
Sarah Atkinson, 34, 307 
Sarah Uowdoin, 72 
Sarah Coburn, 230 
Sarah Cutter, Ul 
Sarah Elizabeth, 104 
Sarah Helena, 257 
Sarah Vivia, 264 
Sidnev, 105 

Simon Blanchard, 99, 107 
Solomon Dixon, 260, 276 
Sophronia, 99 
Susan, 73, 100, 260, 276, 

Susan Dinsmore, 263 
Susan Graham, 267 
Susan Stacey, 257 
Susannah, 49, 134, 229 
Susannah Hildreth, 267 

Thaddeus Stevens, 112 
Thomas, 21, 27, 28, 31, 
33, 34, 35, 36, 305, 307 
Thomas Barrett, 35, 307 
Thomas Howard, 284 

Varina Dorothy, 288 
Vera, 277 

Varntjm (continued) 
Virginia, 260 
VirgU, 289 
Vivian, 289 
Vivia, 284 

Walter Jewett, 276 
Webster, 109 
Wilbur Fisk, 279 
William, 68, 86, 95, 97 

99, 103, 104, 107, 137 

229, 263 
William Bentley, 94, 102, 

WUbert Francis, 109 
William Francis, 103 
William Harrison,' 251, 

William Jewett, 278 
William Joseph, 279 
William Moore, 97 
William Parker, 83, 94, 

William Prescott, 263, 

William Nelson, 263, 279 
WUliam Wallace, HI 

Zephaniah Sexton, 263 

Vibbert, Lucinda, 263 
Maria E., 263, 279 
Viles, Albert, 257 
Vining, Annie, 307 

Ward, Nancy, 258, 276 
Wasson, Lucy L., 49 
Whiting, Blanche M., 276, 

Phineas, 133 
Whitnev, Rufus B., 36, 308 

Fred A., 35 
Whittemore, James, 257 
Wickman, J. H , 110 
Wilder, Luke, 49 
Williams, Harriet, 224 
Wilson, Charles, 224 
Wimperly, Anna, 97 
Winslow, Charles, 140 

Sidney, 236 
Wyman, Laura P., 98, 104 

York, Hester Ann, 226 


(See Page 16.) 

Samuel Varntjm. "The Old Manse, the home of Rev" 
Nathaniel Rogers, pastor of the 1st Church, is on the site of 
the lot sold by Samuel Yarnum, Sen., to Edward Dean with a 
house, Apr. 8, 1665." (Ipswich Deeds, 2, 245.) Waters' 
Ijmoich (1905) p. 385. 

In diagram (No. 2, page 338) the lot is located on the High 
Street, near Meeting-house Green, and marked Samuel Varnum. 

(See pages 33, 34, 35.) 
6. Thomas YAR^■UM^ born 5 May, 1743; died IJuly, 1805 ; 
married (int.) " Mr. Thomas Varnum entered with me his in- 
tention of marriage with Mrs. Polly Atkinson of Pelham." 
Dracutt T. R., Vol. 2, p. 433. She was born in 1762, died 10 
Feb., 1818. 
Nine children : 
i, Mary,' b. 11 Nov., 1784; d. 8 Sept., 1859 ;m. 29 June, 1813, 
Lt. Peter, son of Hezekiah Coburn of Dracutt, who died 12 
Feb., 1832. 

Four children (Coburn) : 

Robert Parker, b. 6 Oct., 1814; d. 1820. 

Jeremiah Varnum, b. 18 Dec, 1815; d. 1851. 

Peter Sullivan, b. 21 Dec, 1817; d. 27 Feb., 1895; 

m. Lucy Bowman. 
Fanny, b. 27 July, 1823; m. Robert Mills, 
ii. Hannah, b. 29 Aug., 1786; d. 27 Jan., 1844; m. 3 Nov., 
1807, Timotliy, son of Jacob and Lydia (Hall) Coburn, b. 
29 Aug., 1778; d. 14 June, 1819. 
Four children (Coburn) : 

Czarina, b. 14 Aug., 1808; d. 11 Oct., 1S42. 
Timothy Varnum, b. 12 April, 1810 ; d. 19 April, 1860; 
m. Catiiarine P. Hardy. 


Abel, b. 24 Aug., 1816; d. 2 Oct., 1894; m. 12 Nov., 

1845, Julia Ansart Varnum. 
Bartlett, b. 6 July, 1819; d. 18 Aug., 1844. 
iii. Thomas, b. 19 April, 1788 ; m. Mary Brown, 
iv. Sarah, b. 21 Oct., 1790 ; d. 30 Aug., 1853 ; m. 25 Feb., 1810, 
Charles, son of Parker and Hannah (Abbott) Bodwell of 
Mcthuen, b. 25 Aug., 1788; d. 7 July, 1862. 
Six children (Bodwell) : 

Mary Varnum, b. 9 Aug., 1810; d. 23 Oct., 1834; m. 

25 Dec, 1833, Samuel S. Rugg, of Lowell. 
Sarah Ann, b. 11 Jan., 1813; d. unm. 15 Mar., 1885. 
Jane, b. 24 Feb., 1815; d. 1895; m. (1) 19 May, 
1836, John D. Barnett of Barnett, Vt. ; (2) 13 June, 
1843, John D. Bobbins of Lowell. 
Phebe Varnum, b. 3 Dec, 1823. 

Hannah Poor, b. 26 July, 1825; d. 10 Aug., 1903; 
m. (1) John R. Moore of N. H. ; (2) Charles H. 
Elizabeth Baldwin, b. 30 June, 1828; lives (1906) in 
V. Samuel, b. 29 March, 1792 ; d. unm. 7 Feb. 1879. 
vi. Jeremiah, b. 16 Mar., 1794; m. Mehitable Ford, 
vii. Ednah, b. 21 Feb. 1790; d. 1 Feb., 1832; m. 23 May, 1822, 
Theodore, b. 3 May, 1793, d. 30 Sept., 1880, son of John 
and Elizabeth (Perham) Hamblet of Dracutt. 
Five children (Hamblet) : 
Abigail Butterfield, b. 23 Mar., 1823 ; d. 27 Jan., 1892 ; 

m. 31 March, 1846, AVilliam Tuck of Andover. 
Daniel Varnum, b. 18 Nov., 1824; m. 26 April, 1849, 

Helen A. Peasley. 
Cyrus, b. 15 Jan., 1827; m. 1. Jan., 1855, Mary Ann 

Merrill of Tyngsboro. 
John Perham, b. 28 Nov., 1828 ; d. unm. 16 Oct., 1885. 
Oliver, b. 28 Mar., 1831 : d. 22 Dec, 1844. 
viii. Daniel, b. 10 Feb., 1798 ; d. 4 May, 1881, unm. " He was the 
last of a family of nine children, and died in the old ancestral 
home, where he and his brother Samuel, who d. in 1879, aged 
87, lived with their eldest brother Thomas, who d. in 1879." 

ADDB2a)A. 307 

ix. Oliver P., b. Mar., 1805; d. unm. 1 Nov., 1839. He was 
a deeply religious man, a fine performer on the violin, which 
he played at church, regarding it as consecrated to sacred 
music, and none other would he play thereon. 

Thomas Variuira lived and died on the ancestral acres which 
descended from his grandfather Thomas; and lies buried be- 
side his wife in the Woodbine Cemetery, on Varnnm Avenue, 
near his home in Dracutt, now Pawtucketville, Lowell. He 
was a farmer. He was one of the 81 Minute Men, who, under 
Capt. Stephen Kussell, " marched on ye 19th Apr., 1775 against 
the Ministerial Troops." In the same company was his cousin 
Joseph Bradley Yarnum. He left no Avill. His wife was ap- 
pointed administratrix 21 Sept., 1819. His estate was appraised 
by Parker Yarnum, James Yarnum and Thomas Hovey, -Ith 
Oct., 1810, at $5527.90. 

7. Thomas^ Yaknum {Thomas,^ Thomas,'^ Thomas^ Sam- 
uel,'' George'), born 29 April, 1788; died 13 April, 1857; m. 6 
June, 1822, Mary, dau. of Abel and Mary (Barrett) Brown of 
Concord, Mass., born 30 April, 1803, died 1 Oct., 1850. 

Five children: 

i. Mary Ann,' b. 5 Apr., 1823; d. 3 Sept., 1862; m. 9 May, 

1846, Horatio W. iMarshall. 
ii. Thomas Barrett, b. 27 Apr., 1825; d. in infancy, 
iii. Sarah Atkinson, b. 11 Oct., 1826; d. 31 Dec, 1897; m. 25 
Dec, 1850, Jonathan, son of Jonathan and Anna (Coburn) 
Bowers, of Dracutt, b. 2 Mar., 1825; d. 28 Dec, 1894. 
Four children (Bowers) : 

Minnie Brown, m. 12 Sept., 1876, Frank E. Jewett of 

Kittie Annie. 

Jonathan, Jr., m. 10 Dec, 1885, Alice McNabb. 
George, m. 14 Nov., 1888, Annie Vining 
iv. James Brown, b. 17 Feb., 1832; d. in infancy. 
V. Thomas, m. (1) Sarah M. Pierce; (2) Helen M. Allen. 


Thomas Varnum, like those of his name, lived and died on 
the ancestral acres originall}" purchased by Samuel Yarnum at 
the Pawtucket ujiper falls, Dracutt. With him lived his bro- 
thers Samuel, Daniel and Oliver. He was a successful farmer. 
His family burial lot is in Woodbine Cemetery. 

8. Jeremiah" (Thomas,^ Thomaf;,'* Thomas,^ Samuel,^ 
George^)horn 10 Mar., 1794; died 18 April, 1876; married 5 
Mar., 1822, Mehitable, dan. of Timothy Ford and Mehitable 
Kowell his wife, of Hudson, N. H., who died 15 Apr., 1890. 
Children : 

i. jMchitable Maria,' b. 5 June, 1823 ; d. 5 Apr., 1844. 
ii. Prudence Ford, b. 20 Sept., 1824; d. 30 June, 1833. 
iii. Jaue Coburn, b. 23 May, 182G ; d. 15 Jan., 1882; m. Rufus 
B. Whitney. 

One child: Fred A., d. 3 Sept., 1866. 
iv. Atkinson Chiyton, b. 27 Jan., 1828; m. Mary Jane Abbott. 
V. Ednah Hamblett, b. 25 Feb., 1831 ; d. unm. 5 Nov., 1866. 
vi. Maria Prudence, b. 30 Julv, 1834; m. Nov. 13, 1861, John 
M. Coburn, b. 1823, d."l883. 

One dau. : Lillian Arabella, m. Charles Arthur Richardson, 
vii. Czarina Coburn, b. 13 Nov., 1837 ; m. 23 Nov., 1856, John 
Jay Colton, M.D. 
Two daughters : 

Nellie Varnum, m. Roscoe L. Chase. 
Alice Maria, ni. William T. S. Bartlett. 

Jeremiah Yarnum was a farmer in Dracutt. He was chosen 
Elder of the West Church of Dracutt (now the Pawtucket 
Congregational of Lowell), 15 Aug., 1831, and served as an 
Elder until April, 1859. He was a pronounced anti-slavery 
advocate, and in 1834 contributed money with other Dracutt 
men in aid of the cause. He lived in Dracutt on the original 
Shatswell-Yarnum purchase which descended to him through 
Thomas, first son of Samuel. He was a man of sturdy inde- 
pendence of character, which gave him universal esteem. 



MAY 1