History of Cumberland County Maine
With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches of
Its Prominent Men and Pioneers
Philadelphia:  Everts & Peck, 1880
First Settlers                                                               Schools
Places of Historic Interest                                           Associations
Villages                                                                      Physicians
Incorporation- Boundaries                                          Lawyers
Officials Added 9 Jan 2004                                                      Military -Added 9 Jan 2004  
Churches                                                                     Biographical Sketch of Jonathan Ingalls photo 9 Jan 04

OTISFIELD GRANT OF THE TOWN

The town of Otisfield originally extended to Harrison village and the outlet of Long Pond, and, including the greater part of Harrison and Naples, was originally granted to the officers and soldiers of Capt. John Gorham’s Company, in 1771, for services in the Canada expedition of 1690.  Thirty families were to be settled within six years, a meeting-house built, and four shares of one sixty-fourth each of the lands of the grant were to be set aside for the grammar school, Harvard College, for the first settled minister, and for a perpetual fund for the support of the ministry.

The unsettled state of public affairs delayed settlement until after the war, when returned soldiers, inured to hardship and privation, sought homes in the new country "to the eastward of Saco River."

In 1774, James Prescott and Stephen Gorham were sent from Boston to compel the town of Raymond to fix the boundary lines between the two towns; and George Peirce (sic) was induced to build a mill at Edes' Falls, then in the southern part of Otisfield, as an encouragement to settlers.  "In the confusion of the times occasioned by the British invasion, in 1775, the proprietors' book was lost." So reads the first page of the subsequent record.  In October, 1776, a meeting of the proprietors was held at " The Bunch' of  Grapes," in Boston, and a second  drawing for lots took place, in which lot 116 was drawn, for the college, 120 for the ministerial, and 71 for the school fund.  It was then voted that the town previously called  “Parkerstown" be given the name of Otisfield, and George Peirce (sic) be appointed to survey and establish the lines of the lots.

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FIRST SETTLERS

The land comprised a dense forest, approachable only on foot or by boats, rising in high broken ridges, between which were numerous ponds, confined above their natural level by the industrious beaver, whose dams still mark the old "meadows," or remain secreted in the timber at the outlet of the remaining ponds, which has grown since they were abandoned.  Benjamin Patch arrived at Mr. Peirce's May 17, 1776, after a four days' journey from Groton, Mass., making that his home while hunting and trapping beaver in the ponds and meadows.  In 1779 he selected lot 92, on the western slope of the high hill now known as Meeting-House Hill, as his future home, spent the fall in clearing land, piled his log heaps while boiling sugar the next spring, and in June of 1780 planted the first crop raised in the town. Daniel Cobb, who was driven from Naples through fear of Indians, moved in the same spring, and located on the top of the hill.  His son, the late Rev. William G. Cobb born at Edes' Falls, Oct. 14,1779, and Levi, son of Benjamin Patch, born Nov.21, 1782, were competitors for the prize of 100 acres of land donated to the first male child born in the town.  The land was awarded to Levi Patch, as an actual resident. He was afterwards the first postmaster of Otisfield.

In 1778, Joseph Spurr, with his sons, Enoch and Samuel, settled at Spurr's Corners.  Zebulon Knight settled on the hill near Mr. Cobb, and was joined by Jonathan Moors, an old soldier.  In 1779, Noah and Samuel Reed locating a mile to the northeast about the same time.  Ebenezer Kemp and John Fife also came in 1779.

A committee was sent to Otisfield during this year, to see if the conditions of the grant were being complied with, and in 1780 Dr. Davis (sic) Ray was sent to erect a saw and gristmill.  In the woods, a few rods below Mr. Holden's mills (where the outlet of Saturday Pond flows through a crevice in the rock, then takes a plunge of thirty feet), these mills, the first in the town, were erected.  This became the central place for business, and at one time supported two stores, but the mill was suffered to decay, and, after 1845, the business was transferred to Bolster's Mills and Spurr's Corners.

Lieut. Joseph Hancock (a cousin of John Hancock, of the Continental Congress) settled, with his two sons, Joseph, Jr., and Thomas, at the head of Parker (now Pleasant) Pond, where his grandson, C. F. Hancock’s store, now is.  Thomas, David and Daniel Thurston located, in 1779, beside the beaver meadow, a mile south of the Spurrs; Mrs. Thurston attending at the birth of William G. Cobb in that year.  Samuel Whiting located in the south part of the town, and in 1782 Mark Knight came.  The proprietors were notified that their lands would be sold at auction for not being settled.  More time was finally granted, and in 1784 Joseph Wight settled at the head of a beaver meadow, near “the willow tree”, with his sons, Joseph, Jr., Benjamin, Thomas, and Nathan.  Samuel Scribner settled on Scribner’s Hill, in the south; Jonathan Britton and Benjamin (father of Joseph and Ireson) Green northwest of Saturday Pond; and in 1787 David Kneeland, Samuel Gammon, and Deacon Stephen Phinney had joined the settlement.

On petition of Dr. Davis(sic) Ray, Benjamin Patch, Joseph Hancock, Jonathan Moors, and Samuel Gammon, a meeting was held, May 15, 1787, at the house of Deacon Phinney, to organize a plantation government.  The officers chosen were David Ray, moderator of the meeting; Joseph Wight, Jr., clerk; David Ray, Benjamin Patch, Noah Reed, assessors Jonathan Moors, collector.

In 1795 the following persons had also become residents of the plantation:  Joseph Cotes, Nathaniel and William Edwards, William Gammon, Elias and Rowland Hancock (a second family of the name, who settled south of Bolster's Mills), Oliver Hapgood, Stephen Johnson, Robert and Henry Knight, Ebenezer Kollock, David Mayberry, Joseph Morse, Dan Morse (the first blacksmith in the town), Edward Scribner (who came in 1791) and his sons Joseph, John, Samuel, and Willoughby (settled on the highest land in the south of the town), Jonathan Smith, John Sawyer, Elisha, Thaddeus, and Simeon Turner, George Walker, Zachariah and Thomas Weston, Nathan Haskell; in 1796, Ichabod Whitham. Nathan Nutting, John Holden;  and by 1803, Thomas Edes, Dennis Lovewell, William Anderson, John and Richard Lombard, Barney and Thomas Sawyer, Benjamin Stevens, Timothy Jordan, Peter and Samuel Wardwell, Zach Morton, Robert Anderson, Edwin, Joseph, and Daniel Scribner were annexed, with their lands joining Oxford County, formerly called Phillip’s Gore, in 1803.

In 1795 there were but 15 houses and 19 barns in the town; George Peirce owned 2 horses, and 19 others owned 1 each.  Among the 66 voters there were but 226 acres of cleared land, exclusive of the beaver meadows which had been partially drained, and furnished excellent pasture or hay.  A careful canvas made in the fall of that year, shows the entire potato crop to have been 86 bushels.

Many of the early settlers were soldiers of the Revolution, and the greater number from the vicinity of Groton, Mass.  In 1812 their descendants readily anticipated the need of the government for troops. and chose Capt. Daniel Holden, Grenfill (sic) Blake. Oliver Pierce, Silas Blake, and Benjamin Wight a committee of safety.  A patriotic pledge, breathing the spirit of the great declaration, was signed, and the citizens responded cheerfully to the first call for troops with men already organized as minute-men.  The oldest settler is John Edwards, who came in 1816, camped three years, brought his family in 1819, and is still living in the north part of the town at the age of ninety one years.

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PLACES OF HISTORIC INTEREST

On the high hill where Daniel Cobb and Jonathan Moors settled, and the first two children were born, the first church, since replaced by a more modern one, was erected in 1797. Saturday, Pleasant and Thompson's Ponds, and the distant Sebago Lake, were the only openings then visible in the wide expanse of timbered valley now broken by farms and numerous villages, and the high range of hills circling the county to the north and west were barely visible through the tops of the surrounding trees.  Across the road the well filled churchyard, selected by the proprietors as a burying ground in 1781, contains the remains of Major Moors, Joseph Wight, Benjamin Patch, and Levi Patch, the first child of Otisfield; Dr. David Ray, first physician of Otisfield ; Samuel Scribner, Joseph Weston, " a soldier of the Revolution," and many other early settlers.  The first male child born in the town- Elder Wm. G. Cobb- rests in the little cemetery (Cobb Hill) south of East Otisfield, beside Pleasant (sic Thompson) Pond, with the early dead of his family.  Half a mile or more to the south is the old first church, deeded to the town in 1845, and moved to its present position by Capt. Otis Fernald, Capt. Roland Holden, and Lyman Nutting, who removed the lower portion. but left the main features.  Still farther to the south, but in sight of the town-house, a large willow tree spreads its branches over the road.

Rev. Thomas Roby, the first minister, brought from Massachusetts two willow sticks, when he first came to Otisfield in 1796.  One he cut in pieces and planted on his own farm, the ministerial lot, between Johnson Knight's corner and Ray's Mill. The other he gave to Mrs. Abigail Wight, who cut it in three pieces, two of which she planted on her  own place.  The third she gave Dr. Joseph Wight, who planted it in front of his residence.  The latter is the tree referred to at the close of the preceding paragraph.

The South Otisfield Cemetery is honored by the grave of William Edwards, one of the first  settlers, who died in  1847, aged ninety four years, and others who shared with him the hardships of pioneer life.

At Spurr's Corners, Mark Knight and David Thurston each donated half an acre of land, previous to 1801, to form the ground where they are buried.  A smaller yard, two miles to the west, was opened after.

Elmwood Cemetery, near the church at Ray's Mill, comprises three acres of land donated by Deacon Eliphilas Wight.  It was incorporated in 1869, and is the most beautiful cemetery in the town.  The other principal burying grounds are the Scribner ground, south of East Otisfield, containing many old granite stones with the simple initials and date, among which is "E-S" (Edwin Scribner) "A- G-101-".  The East Otisfield cemetery of the Wight family, and the North Otisfield, where are buried John and Capt. Elisha Lombard, David Sawyer, Timothy Jordan, and other pioneers.  There is also an old cemetery two miles north of East Otisfield, and a small family ground a few rods east, near the lake, containing the grave of Nathaniel Lamb, who died in 1850, aged seventy one.

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VILLAGES

EAST OTISFIELD,  on Thompson's Pond, contains the saw-, grist-, and shingle mill of Stephen D. Jilson (sic), established 1850, on the site of the old Scribner mill, J. D. Wight's blacksmith shop, store of Horace A. Hall, established 1828, a school-house, and six dwellings.  Mails are received by stage tri-weekly, connecting with Oxford and Portland.  Horace A. Hall, postmaster.

BOLSTERS MILLS, -in Otisfield, contains ten dwellings, I. H. Stuart's lumber- mill, the Hancock House, M. Hancock, established 1859, and F. Chute's blacksmith shop.  It is a part of the main village in the adjoining town of Harrison.

SPURR'S CORNERS, -the Otisfield post office, contains a church, school, the store of R. G. Scribner, closed in 1878, 17 dwellings, Bangs & Co.'s clothing manufactory, established 1871, shoe shop of Benjamin Stone, Jr., established 1874, and half a mile east of the corner the store of C. F. Hancock, established 1849, and the carriage shop of E. A. Holbrook. Mails from Oxford Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and from Portland the alternate days.  R. G. Scribner, postmaster.

Nearly three miles south, on the Mayberry place, is the Oriental Mineral Spring, a new and popular resort for invalids.

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INCORPORATION

In pursuance of the act of incorporation of the town of Otisfield, passed by the Massachusetts legislature Feb.19, 1798, a warrant was issued to Benjamin Patch, yeoman, for a meeting to be held at the public meeting-house, May 28, 1798.  At this meeting, David Ray was chosen Moderator; Enoch Spurr, Clerk; David Ray, Pelatiah March, Zebulon Knight, Selectmen and Assessors; Lieut. Mark Knight, Treasurer; George Peirce, Esq., Constable and Collector; Elijah Turner, David Mayberry, Tithing-Men; Capt. P. March, Jonathan Moors, Nathan Burnam, Fence- Viewers.

A strip, 410 rods wide, was annexed to the northeast side in 1803; that part of the original grant west of Crooked River was taken off in 1805; a part of Naples was taken off in 1834; and 47 acres were added to the east in 1858. The surface, which is low, broken, and well timbered, includes Little, Moose, Saturday, and the greater part of Pleasant Pond.  Otisfield is the most northerly town in Cumberland County (Webmaster’s note until 1979).  It is bounded on the north by Norway, in Oxford County, on the east by Oxford, Thompson's Pond, and between 350 and 400 acres of land not incorporated in, any town,* on the south by Casco and Naples, and on the west by Harrison, Crooked River forming the boundary line.

*The land " unassigned to any towns," is the property of Dominicus J.  Edwards, and has had no resident owner for some years  It comprises 347 acres on the west side of Thompson's Pond, which has never been taxed.

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CIVIL LIST

ASSESSORS OF OTISFIELD PLANTATION

1787 David Ray, Benjamin Hatch, Noah Reed
1788 David Ray, Benjamin Hatch, Zebulon Knight
1789 The same were said to have held over
1790 David Ray, Zebulon Knight, Jonathan Moors
1791 The same were said to have held over
1792-93 David Ray, Benjamin Hatch, Zebulon Knight
1794 Joseph Wight, Jr., Enoch Spurr, David Thurston
1795 Joseph Wight, Jr., David Thurston, Jonathan Britton
1796-97 David Ray, Samuel Gammon, Capt. Pelatiah March

 

SELECTMEN OF THE TOWN OF OTISFIELD
**PelEtiah is spelled PelAtiah below; PIErce is spelled PEIrce, BArrows is spelled BUrrows below

1798 David Ray, Pelatiah March, Zebulon Knight 1799 Capt. Pelatiah March, David Thurston, Jonathan Britton
1800 Pelatiah March, Enoch Spurr, Daniel Holden 1801-2 Enoch Spurr, Daniel Holden Nathanial Burnam
1803 Lieut.Daniel Holden, Dr. Sireno Burnell, Lieut. Robert Anderson, Samuel Scribner, David Thurston 1804 Benjamin Wight, David Ray, Pelatiah March
1805 Enoch Spurr, Zebulon Knight, Lieut. Robert Anderson 1806 Enoch Spurr, Benjamin Wight, Robert Anderson
1807 Enoch Spurr, Zebulon Knight, Benjamin Wight 1808 Enoch Spurr, Stephen Knight, Robert Anderson
1809-10 Daniel Holden, Stephen Knight, Robert Anderson 1811 Daniel Holden, Enoch Spurr, Grinfill Blake
1812-13 Daniel Holden, Enoch Spurr, Benjamin Wight 1814-17 Grinfill Blake, Daniel Holden, Thomas B. Chambers
1818 Grinfill Blake, Nathan Wight, Oliver Peirce, Esq. 1819 Nathan Wight, Francis Chute, Silas Blake
1820 Grinfill Blake, Oliver Peirce, Benjamin Wight 1821 Benjamin Wight, Oliver Peirce, Enoch Spurr
1822 Benjamin Wight, Thomas Shedd, Oliver Peirce 1823 Benjamin Wight, Thomas Shedd, Francis Chute
1824 Thomas Shedd, Roland Holden, Francis Chute 1825 Jonathan Britton, Roland Holden, Benjamin Holden
1826 Thomas Shedd, Benjamin Wight, Roland Holden 1827 Roland Holden, John Phipps, John Linnell
1828 Roland Holden, Thomas Shedd, John Phipps 1829 Roland Holden, Oliver Hancock, Jonathan Britton
1830 Roland Holden, Banjamin Wight, Wyatt Turner 1831-1832 Roland Holden, Wyatt Turner, Harvey Mayberry
1833 Henry Holden, Samuel R. Anderson, Jefferson Bray 1834 Roland Holden, Henry Holden, John Hancock
1835 Roland Holden, Harvey Mayberry, Francis Chute 1836 John Hancock, Jesse Holden, Oliver Spurr
1837 John Hancock, Joseph Hall, Daniel Weston 1838 John Hancock, Daniel Weston, Henry Holden
1839 John Hancock, Henry Holden, George W. Burrows 1840 John Hancock, Paul Stone, George W. Burrows
1841 John Hancock, Robinson Cook, David Andrews 1842 John Hancock, Robinson Cook, Henry Holden
1843 Robinson Cook, Paul Stone, Samuel P. Hancock 1844 John Hancock, Samuel P. Anderson, James Wight
1845 John Hancock, George P. H9olden, Daniel Weston, David Andrews, Stephen Rich ** 1846 John Hancock, David Andrews, George P. Holden
1847 John Hancock, Dan Shedd, David Andrews 1848 John Hancock, David Andrews, William E.F. Linnell
1849 Daniel Weston, Samuel Chambers, Samuel Spurr 1850 William E.F. Linnell, Samuel Spurr, Daniel Holden
1851 Daniel Weston, Robinson Cook, Ebenezer C. Andrews 1852 Daniel Weston, E.C. Andrews, William Lamb
1853 Robinson Cook, William Lamb, Johnson K. Lovewell 1854 William Lamb, Johnson W. Knight, Joseph Green
1855 Daniel Weston, S.LO. Andrews, Alpheus B. Lovewell 1856 William Lamb, William Smith, Francis Holden
1857 William C. Smith, Asa Andrews, J.K. Lovewell 1858 Johnson K. Lovewell, Mark Knight (2d), William Haskell
1859 William Lamb, J.K. Lovewell, William H. Lord 1860 William Lamb, William H. Lord, Johnson W. Knight
1861 William H. Lord, Edward Scribner, Jesse F. Holden 1862 William H. Lord, Johnson W. Knight, Jonathan Wardwell
1863 William Lamb, Daniel Holden, Jonathan Wardwell 1864 Daniel Holden, Jonathan Wardwell Jr, Darius Jordan
1865 E.C.Andrews, A.B. Lovewell, Daniel Holden 1866 Robinson Cook, David D. Scribner, Joseph S. Mayberry
1867 David D. Scribner, Daniel Holden, E.J. Sylvester 1868 David D. Scribner, Albert F. Butting, Daniel L. Brett
1869 A.F.Nutting, D.D. Scribner, Joseph S. Mayberry 1870 Joseph S. Mayberry, David Andrews, Johnson Knight
1871-1872 Johnson K. Lovewell, Daniel Holden, James Maines 1873 Johnson K. Lovewell, James Maines, Moses Hancock
1874 Jonathan Wardwell, Daniel Holden, James W. Holden 1875 Jonathan Wardwell Jr., James Maines, H.H. Huntress
1876 Albert F. Nutting, H.H. Huntress, Fernald J. Sawyer 1877 Albert f. Butting, S.C. Barrows, Benjamin S. Skillings
1878 Jonathan Wardwell, Hosea H. Huntress, Benjamin S. Skillings 1879 Hosea H.Huntress, Daniel L. Brett, Fernald J. Sawyer

** Through a misunderstanding on first ballot,David Andrews & Stephen Rich were sworn in, and the whole five candidates served through the year, though bitter political opponents.

CLERKS- PLANTATION OF OTISFIELD 1787-1798
TOWN OF OTISFIELD 1798-Present Day

1787-1790 Joseph Wight Jr 1792-1793 Enoch Spurr 1794-1795 Benjamin Wight
1796 George Peirce 1797-1798 John Holden    
           
1798-1802 Enoch Spurr 1803 Sireno Burnell 1804-1808 Enoch Spurr
1809-1817 Levi Patch 1818 Thomas B. Chambers 1819-1845 Levi Patch
1846-1848 Benjamin Patch 1849-1850 Johnson W. Knight 1851-1855 Lewis H. Sawyer
1856 Mark Knight 1857-1858 Mark Knight (2d) 1859-1863 Lewis H. Sawyer
1864-1867 Albert F. Nutting 1868 R.G. Scribner 1869-1872 Roscoe T. Green
1873 Russell G. Scribner 1874-1877 Silas Morton 1878-1879 Horace A. Hall
           

TREASURERS- PLANTATION OF OTISFIELD 1787-1798

1794- Lieut. David Ray 1795 Elias Hancock 1796-Lieut. Mark Knight 1797- Benjamin Patch

TREASURERS- TOWN OF OTISFIELD 1798-Present Day

1798- Lieut. Mark Knight 1799-1800- Benjamin Patch 1801-1806- David Thurston
1807-1808 Thomas B. Chambers 1809 Benjamin Wight 1810-1816 Daniel Holden
1817 Thomas B. Chambers 1818-1819 Silas Blake 1820-1821 Thomas B. Chambers
1822-1827 Silas Blake 1828 John Phipps 1829-1831 Samuel P. Anderson
1832 Silas Blake 1833-1837 Merrill Knight 1838 Thomas B. Chambers
1839-1840 John Phipps 1841 Dan Shedd 1842 Merrill Knight
1843 Samuel Chambers 1844-1846 Thomas Chute 1847-1850 Samuel Chambers
1851-1854 Samuel Chambers 1855 Lewis H. Sawyer 1856-1857 Johnson K. Lovewell
1858 Samuel Chambers 1859-1861 Lewis H. Sawyer 1862-1871 Silas D. Andrews
1872-1879 William Lamb    

COLLECTORS- PLANTATION OF OTISFIELD 1787-1798

1787 Jonathan Moors 1788-1793 Stephen Knight 1794 Benjamin Patch & Stephen Knight
1795 Stephen Knight 1796-1797 Jonathan Moors 1798 Stephen Knight


COLLECTORS- TOWN OF OTISFIELD 1798-Present Day

1798-1800 George Peirce Esq 1801-1802 Stephen Knight 1803 Capt.Jonathan Moors
1804 Stephen Knight 1805 Jonathan Sawyer, Stephen Knight (vacancy) 1806 Nathan Wight
1807 Capt Daniel Holden, col., Stephen Knight, cons 1808 Benjamin Stevens 1809 Stephen Knight
1810 Dr. Silas Blake 1811-1813 Maj. Jonathan Moors 1814 Ephrain Kneeland
1815-1821 Col. Francis Chute 1822 Nathan Wight 1823 Capt. Joseph Haskell
1824 Horatio Wight 1825 Harvey Mayberry 1826 Horatio Wight
1827-1828 Harvey Maybery 1829-1830 Robert Edes 1831 Emery Edes
1832 Merrill Knight, Thomas J. Carter, cons 1833 Merrill Knight, Thomas J. Carter, cons 1834 Mark Knight
1835 Moors Hancock 1836 Moses Hancock, Reuben Sampson (vacancy) 1837 Reuben Sampson
1838 Mark Wight, Henry Holden (vacancy), cons 1839 James G. Warren 1840-1841 Dan Shedd
1842-1843 Moses Rogers 1844-1846 Dan Shedd 1847 Job Morton
1848 Dan Shedd, Job Morton (vacancy) 1849 Thomas Shedd 1850 William C. Smith
1851 Francis Holden 1852-1856 William C. Smith 1857-1858 Johnson W. Knight
1859 William C. Smith 1860-1861 Joseph W. Holden 1862 George F. Andrews
1863- 1864 David D. Scribner 1865 B.F. Skillings 1866-1867 Darius Jordan
1868-1870 Moses D. Andrews 1871-1873 Daniel L. Brett 1874-1875 Eastman Bean
1876-1877 Johnson Knight 1878-1879 Zebulon Knight  


CHURCHES

CONGREGATIONALIST
In 1794 the inhabitants of Otisfield agreed to build a meeting-house, and join with the proprietors in hiring a preacher.  Funds were collected, and the first church in the town was erected on the hill just to the east of the present one.  In 1796, Rev. Thomas Roby came from Massachusetts and began preaching to the settlers.  A council convened at the house of Dr. David Ray, Nov.23, 1797. Rev. Mr. Webster, of Bradford, was chosen chairman, and Rev. Mr. Merritt, of Standish, scribe. Rev. Mr. Jewell, of Gorham, was also present.  Thomas Thurston, George Pierce, Elisha Turner, Joseph Hancock, Joseph Spurr, Elias Hancock, Merriam, William, and Enoch Spurr were the first members.  Rev. Mr. Roby was installed pastor, and continued to fill that position until Sept. 4, 1810. Elias Hancock was made deacon in 1798.  During this year the church attempted by a unanimous vote to dismiss Rev. Mr. Roby, for intemperance, but failed in their efforts, and a compromise was effected.  George Pierce, Benjamin Patch, and David Thurston were appointed a committee to finish the church, which was done by June, 1800, at a total cost of 186 12s.  In 1797 persons began to register their names with the clerk of the town to be released from this church, and new members were 348 joined to the society each year.  A second meeting-house was built beside the first in 1839, by Silas Blake, Samuel P. Anderson, and Levi Patch, committee, and the old one given up for the use of the town officers, who had shared in its use since its erection.  Perez Chaplain became church clerk in 1810.  Rev. Josiah G. Merrill was pastor from November, 1814, to November, 1830; Rev. James P. Richardson, from October, 1833, to July, 1858, and was succeeded by Rev. Wm. Davenport, in 1862.  Philip B. Wilcox was pastor from October, 1865, to 1870 ; Charles Morgridge, 1870 and 1871; Rev. H. A. Loring, June, 1873-74; Warren F. Bickford, 1875 ; Geo. H. Dunlap, 1876 ; Daniel Green, 1877.  Present deacon and clerk, Silas Morton.  This church joined with the Free-Will Baptists in the support of their pastor, Rev. J. M. Pease, in 1878.

FREE-WILL BAPTIST CHURCH
In 1799, Deacon Daniel Cobb, Chitman Cobb, Nephtali Cobb, and Jonathan Pepper were given certificates of exemption from the Congregational parish, and in 1802, James Gerrish, John Scribner, Eleazer Chadbourne, “society clerk”, and Rev. Zachariah Leach are mentioned in the town records, and in 1804, Joseph Cates and Daniel Scribner.  Reverend James McOrson was pastor in 1804. TIle church failed for want of support, and was again organized Nov. 16, 1823, in a council which convened at the house of Rev. William G. Cobb.  Andrew, Jonathan, and Hannah Cobb, Eunice Morse, Betsey and Nancy Winship, were organized into a church, and Andrew Cobb was made clerk. The next spring a reformation added many to the church. Rev. Mr. Cobb was succeeded in 1831 by Rev. James Libby, who was succeeded by Rev. Gideon Perkins, in 1833.  Wm. G. Cobb remained with the church until his death in 1850, at the age of seventy years.  He was converted at the age of twenty two, and baptized by Rev. Mr. Leach, in 1801.  He preached his first sermon March 27, 1808.  He was ordained in 1824, and continued to preach until his death.  Rev. Solon Royal assumed the pastorate in 1857 ; John Pinkham, 1860 ; Hubbard Chandler, 1862 to 1865.  The church was reorganized in 1869, under the pastorate of Rev. Joseph Hutchinson, who was succeeded in 1872 by the present pastor, Rev. J .M. Pease, who holds services in the Free-Will Baptist church at East Otisfield, the Congregationalist church and the Union churches at Spurr's Corners, and east of Pleasant Pond.  Deacons Andrew Cobb, 1830  John Winship, Stephen Edwards, 1834; Albert Kemp, 1869; William Lamb, 1870.  Darius Jordan has been church clerk from 1843 to 1879. The present membership is 71.

Officers.-John M. Pease, Pastor ; William Lamb, Albert Kemp, Deacons; Darius Jordan, Clerk, and ex-officio Trustee.

A free meeting-house was erected at East Otisfield by Thomas Jordan, John Knight, John Phipps, Methodist, and Henry Holden, Oliver Hancock, Baptist, trustees, at an expense of $1036, and dedicated by Revs. Clement Phinney, Z. Jordan, and Stephen Waterhouse, Jan. 9, 1829.  This became the property of the Baptist Society in 1869, and was rededicated by Rev. B. F. Hayes, of Bates College.

The Union church at Spurr's Corners was dedicated Jan. 18, 1871, by Rev. Dr. Harris, of' the Auburn, Me., Congregationalist Church, and Rev. L. B. Green.  Trustees in 1879, H. P. Spurr, E. J. Sylvester, Jonathan Ingalls.

THE SOUTH OTISFIELD GENERAL BAPTIST CHURCH  was organized in the South Otisfield school-house, June 16, 1857, by Rev. John A. Bridge and Rev. James S. Potter.  Edward Scribner was made deacon, and John C. Smith clerk.  Among the first members were Mrs. Scribner, A. J. Scribner, Lydia Lunt, Louis Smith, Sarah Burgess, Dorcas Edwards, Harriet Scribner, Deborah Smith. Preaching has been supplied by Revs. Walter Parker, Thomas Strout, 0.Gammon, N. L. Robinson.  Nathan Maxfield was made trustee of' the association in January, 1878.  Their church was erected in 1874, a short distance east of Pleasant Pond, near the Casco line.  It is at present occupied by Rev. Mr. Pease, of the Free-Will Baptist Church.

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SCHOOLS

In 1798, Jonathan Moors, David Thurston, and Benjamin Patch were appointed a committee to dispose of timber on the school lands.  That on lot 15 was sold for $236  In 1800, $70 were voted for the support of schools. The next year a school-house was built on the hill, and Joel Simmons taught the school of 1802-3.  William Swan taught school as early as 1794-95.  By act of Legislature a committee was appointed to divide the ministerial and school lands in accordance with the division which made the town of Harrison.  David Ray was made chairman of the board of five trustees for Otisfield, with power to elect their successors annually; Nepthali Harmon was chairman of the similar organization in Harrison.  The school appropriations have gradually increased from $300 in 1813; $524 in 1842; $600 in 1854; $725 in 1860, to $1200 in 1868.  In 1819 the school fund was $2361.50. In 1826 the town comprised 9 districts and 506 children. There were, in 1879, 13 districts, one of which is a joint district with Harrison, 9 wood and 3 brick school-houses, valued at $2300 ,and 308 school children, 251 of whom attended school ; $1503 have been expended for their support during the year, of which $880 was from tax, and $141 from interest on the school fund.  The schools have been managed by a supervisor since 1876.  Supervisor for 1879, Rev. John M. Pease.

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ASSOCIATIONS

MASONS

Crooked River Lodge No. 152, F. and A. M., organized April 15,1869.  Officers, William Chute, W. M. Fernald J. Sawyer, S. W. ; William Twombly; J. W.; George B. Dorman, Treas. ; Alpheus B. Lovewell, Sec.; Gilman Nutting, S.S.; Leander Dorman, J.S.;  Jonathan Ingalls, Chaplin.  Officers 1879. Stephen C. Maxfield,W.M.; Leander Dorman, S.W.; Isaac Sands, J.W.; S.S.Skillings, S.S.; Cyrus W. Stone, J.S.; Benjamin Skillings, Tyler; Alpheus B. Lovewell, Chaplain.  Membership 67. The lodge own a hall and grounds, costing $1000, in Bolster’s Mills, Harrison, the lower room of which is leased for a store.

PATRONS OF HUSBANDRY

Otisfield Grange, No. 117, organized Feb. 27, 1875, with E.J. Sylvester, Master; Sumner Spurr, Sec; Samuel G. Spurr, Overseer; Otis F. Mitchell, Lecturer; James Maines, Lecturer; Henry P. Spurr, Treas; Elizabeth M. Cane, Ceres.  Officers 1879, Ezekiel J. Sylvester, Master; Sumner Spurr, Sec, and Treas.; Marian T. Sylvester, Ceres.

The early merchants have been ______ Perkins, Jonathan Small at Ray’s Mill; William Swett on Meeting-House Hill; Consider Hill, Ivory Tripp, John Phipps 1820-29; Enos Woodward, Oliver and Daniel Dale, Oliver Cooley, and Dr. Horace Barrows, 1853.  An early store was kept at the town-house by B.Shaw, Rufus Houston, and last by Benjamin F. Wight, T.B. Chambers, and Samuel G. Scribner in 1826.  John Lombard, Jr., R.G. Scribner, and S.L. Gilson were late merchants at Spurr’s Corners, and W.Turner at Bolster’s Mills, 1828 to his death, 1878.  Major Jonathan Moors kept an early tavern near the old church.

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PHYSICIANS

The physicians have been David Ray, 1780 to 1822 Joseph Wight, 1784; Sirenus Burnell, 1803-1804; Silas Blake, 1810 to his death in 1851, succeeded by his son,Josiah M. Blake ; Albion Cobb, 1851-57 ; Horace A. Barrows, for many years previous to his death, in 1852; Jonathan Small, 1854; Dr. Kimball, Dr. Carter.

LAWYERS

Hon. Aaron B. Holden, now judge of probate, Portland, Me., Eastman Bean, Grinfell (sic) B. Holden, a native of Otisfield, admitted to practice in 1865, and since in the "employ of the general government, engaged in lumbering in Wisconsin since 1870.

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MILITARY

SOLDIERS OF THlE REVOLUTION - Added 2 Feb 2004

Lieut. David Ray, born 1742; served until 1779; died at Otisfield, 1822; Lieut. Joseph Hancock; Thomas Hancock; John Holden, Jr. born 1762; served as a waiter boy from the first of the war; died 1828; John Holden, born 1739, died 1806; Robert Anderson, afterwards captain of militia, born 1762, died 1846; Jonathan Britton, Benjamin Green, Ebenezer Kemp. Mark Knight, born 1830, died 1813, buried at Spurr's Corners. Nathan Morse, Jr. Enoch Spurr, born 1762; died 1842, buried at Spurr's Corners. Jacob Thurston. Dr. Joseph Wight, a surgeon on board a privateer. John Winship, died 1848, aged eighty-five. Jonathan Piper. John Knight, universally known as "Snappy" Knight, from his peculiar quickness and sharp ssnapping eyes. Jonathan Moors, afterwards major of militia, born 1756, died 1829. James Sampson, born 1762, died 1851, buried at Elmwood Cemetery. Joseph Weston, born 1756, died 1840, aged eight-four. John Lombard, served on LakeChamplain and at Ticonderoga, died 1853, aged eight-nine.

 

SOLDIERS OF THE WAR OF 1812 Added 2 Feb 2004

Drafted from militia company commanded by Capt. Levi Patch, Lieut. Samuel Knight, in 2d Regt, 1st Brigade, 5th Division, of which Francis Chute was lieutenant-colonel.

Capt. John Kilborn's company, under Col. William Ryerson, drafted Sept 21, 1814; Lieut. John Smith, 1st Sergt. Stephen Edwards, Mark Jordan, David Thurston Jr., Daniel Chute, Enoch Brackett (substitute), Joseph Scribner (sub), Joseph Noble (sub), Calvin Morse, John Noble, Jonathan Kemp. July: Stephen Noble, Apolios Knight, Richard Edwards, Nathaniel Edwards, Jr.

Drafted into Capt. Bailey Bardwell's company, September 1814, for forty days: Thomas Jackson, Samuel Wardwell, Jr., Charles Turner, Shepherd Hawke, William Lamb, Solomon Lamb, Daniel Walker, James Scribner (sub), Thomas Wardwell (sub).

In Capt. Asa Ingalls' company, fourteen days from Sept 14, 1814: Samuel P. Anderson, Samuel Knight, Harvey Mayberry, Caleb Edwards, Oliver Spurr, Joseph Noble.

Drafted Sept 8, 1814: Samuel Knight Jr., fifer; Nathaniel Edwards, Caleb Edwards, John Morse.

Lieut. Samuel Knight, Jonathan Scribner, David Jordan, Nathan Knight, Joseph Haskell.

Drafted Sept 21, 1814: Andrew Cobb, Jonathan Cobb, Thomas Wight, David Thurston, Jr., Daniel Walker, David Lord, Richard Lombard, Thomas York, Jr., Abner Bean, John Lord, Solomon Lamb, John Weeks, ephraim Edwards, Andrew Cates, Sergt. Stephen Edwards, Joshua Goodridge, Joseph Wight; Simeon Libby, Willoughby Scribner, John Scribner, Richard Gardner, James Weston, David Jordan, Sergt. Oliver Spurr, Samuel P. Anderson.

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

JONATHAN INGALLS, son of Cyrus Ingalls, was born in Denmark, Me., Feb. 9, 1814.  At the age of fifteen he began learning the black-smith's trade, and at the age of twenty began business for himself in the village of Denmark, which he continued for twelve years.  He spent several years as a stock-dealer, in which he was quite successful financially.  In 1861 he settled in the town of Otisfield and purchased the farm now occupied by him, since which time he has given his attention to farming and blacksmithing.  He first married Rebecca Swan; she died soon after the birth of her first child, which also died.  In 1862 he married Caroline Barker, of New Hampshire.  Mr. Ingalls served as deputy sheriff for four years in Oxford County, and has served for twelve years in Cumberland County.  He is identified with the Republican party.


Photos added 9 Jan 2004
Scanned for the Internet 7/15/1999 - M.Strout
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