lies in the southern part of Washington county, in latitude 44° 8'
and longitude 4° 2', and is bounded northerly by Berlin and a part
of Moretown, easterly by Williamstown, southerly by Roxbury, and westerly
by Waitsfield. The township was chartered by Gov. Thomas Chittenden, in
the name and by the authority of the freemen of Vermont, October 10, 1781,
to Joel MATTHEWS and sixty-four associates, with the usual reservation
of the college, county grammar school, and first settled minister's rights,
and right for the propagation of the gospel. The original grant contained
18,518 acres. November 7, 1822, the area of Northfield was enlarged by
annexing to it about 6,000 acres taken from the east part of Waitsfield.
The surface of Northfield is uneven, hilly, and in part mountainous.
Two ranges of highlands extend north and south across the township, one
on each side of Dog River valley. The soil is generally good. The timber
was principally maple, beech, birch, hemlock, and spruce, with a mixture
of fir, pine, ash, and butternut in some places.
Dog river is the principal stream, which, with its numerous tributaries
from the highlands and springs, affords an abundant supply of pure water
to the entire population. The river is formed in Northfield by the union
of several streams, principally from Roxbury and Brookfield, and takes
a northerly course through Berlin and enters the Winooski about half a
mile below Montpelier. In its descent it affords numerous fine water-powers.
The rocks that form the geological structure of this town are of
the talcose schist, clay slate, and calciferous mica schist formation.
The latter predominates and occupies more than half of the territory in
the western part of the town. Adjoining this is a broad belt of clay slate
that extends across the town, and the extreme eastern edge, along the line
of Williamstown, is formed of calciferous mica schist. There is a bed of
serpentine in the western part of the town, and traces of gold in alluvium
are found along the brooks. There is also a quarry of silicious talcose
schist, from which an excellent quality of scythestones have been made.
This quarry is near the junction of the talcose schist and clay slate,
and about three-fourths of a mile northeast of the village.
The first meeting of the proprietors of the township was held at
the house of William GALLUP, in Hartland, Vt., November 11, 1783. Later
they held meetings from time to time in Hartford, Windsor, Hartland, and
Pomfret, until the town government was organized in 1794. At one of these
meetings the proprietors
"Voted that Mr. Marston CABOT be allowed 27
days in surveying Northfield."
|"At 9s per
|"And 18s expense
|"And for three
gallons of West India rum at 8 / per gal. and one of New England ditto
at 5 / 6 per gallon
At a meeting of the proprietors held at Burch's inn, in Hartford,
Vt., the second Tuesday of November, 1784, it was voted that Elijah PAINE
should have the privilege of pitching at his option the 200 acres in Northfield
if he would build a good saw-mill in said Northfield within eighteen months,
and 200 acres if he would build a grist-mill in a year. He selected for
the purpose a site in the ravin on a brook near the road to Williamstown,
where he built the mills, and this grist-mill was the only one in the town
for many years. Again, on the 5th of August, 1788, as an inducement for
permanent settlement, "Voted that the proprietors of Northfield will give
to the wives of Stanton RICHARDSON and William ASHCROFT, each, one Lot
of land in the second division of Northfield, to be to them, their heirs,
and their assigns forever; on condition that said STANTON and WILLIAM shall
continue to live in Northfield five years each, and the above women to
have an equal share in the second division."
The first permanent settlement was made by Amos and Ezekiel ROBINSON
and Stanton RICHARDSON, in May, 1785. Kezia, daughter of Amos and Batheny
ROBINSON, in 1787, was the first child born in Northfield. She married
Ira SHERMAN, of Waterbury, and died in 1877. The first town meeting was
convened at the house of Dr. Nathaniel ROBINSON, March 25, 1794, by the
order of Cornelius LYNDE, Esq., of Williamstown. At said meeting
the following list of officers was elected : Cornelius LYNDE, moderator
; Nathaniel ROBINSON, town clerk; Stanton RICHARDSON, Amos ROBINSON, Ezekiel
ROBINSON, selectmen; David DENNY, constable ; William ASHCROFT, Stanton
RICHARDSON, Ezekiel ROBINSON, listers; David DENNY, collector of taxes;
Aquillo JONES, Samuel RICHARDSON, highway surveyors.
The town was first represented in the legislature in 1801, by Amos
ROBINSON. The total amount of the grand list of 1794, which is the first
on the records of the town, is £295, 5s. In 1797 the grand list was
first given in decimal currency, -- amount, $1,738.35. The amount of the
grand list for 1888 is $11,672.42. The first recorded freemen's meeting
was held September 1, 1801.
Rev. John GREGORY states, in his history of Northfield, that in
1800 the first votes were cast in Northfield for governor, lieutenant-governor,
and twelve councilors; that each received twelve votes, on the ticket headed
by Isaac TICHNOR for governor, showing a complete unanimity of the voters.
He adds, "which must have been near the number of legal voters in town."
The next year (1801) three school districts are reported, with an aggregate
of ninety-six children of school age, and the names of twenty-nine men
who were the fathers of these children. By the census of 1791 we find that
Northfield then had a population of forty souls, and in 1800 two hundred
and four. This would, by Mr. GREGORY's estimate, make the ratio of the
voters as one to seventeen, when, in fact, it would be about as one to
five; and instead of there being but twelve voters in Northfield in 1800,
there must have been forty at least.
It is not certain who cut the first tree and cleared the first acre
in Northfield, although Judge PAINE is credited with that honor. Judge
Paine DID not receive the proposed grant of land for building mills (before
mentioned) until the close of the season for clearing land, and we find
that Amos and Ezekiel ROBINSON, with their wives, were here in May, 1785.
Dr. Nathaniel ROBINSON was the first physician and first town clerk of
Northfield. He settled on East hill, was a good doctor and very popular,
and died of measles in 1813. John L. BUCK was admitted to the bar in Montpelier,
in September, 1825, settled in Northfield some time in the next month,
and was the first permanent lawyer in the place. He had been preceded by
Simon SMITH but a very short time, who soon moved away.
The first church edifice erected in Northfield was the Union meeting-house,
built by the united efforts of the town in 1820. All but twelve of the
fifty pews were sold at auction for $760. This house was very plain, without
a steeple, and was painted yellow. It is said to have resembled a barn.
Hence, in derision, it had in the mouths of the wicked and ungodly the
sobriquet of “God's yellow barn."
The early civil history of Northfield, like that of other towns,
is a record of town meetings, levying necessary taxes, laying out highways,
organizing school districts, records of people warned out of town, whether
sick or poor, that they might not become a charge to it as paupers, and
records of births, deaths, and marriages. Its pioneer settlers were hardy,
energetic, and generally young men who came from the southeastern part
of Vermont, New Hampshire, and the older Eastern states. They were not
afraid of the labor and hardships necessary to level the forest and build
a town. They cut down the giant trees, built houses, barns, school-houses,
and manufactories, good highways and turnpikes, and established mail routes
and stage lines. They drove out the bears and wolves, and reared sleek
horses, cattle, and sheep. They were prudent, honest, and plain; their
means were generally small, but their wants were few. The skillful housewives
and their industrious daughters spun, wove, and made the clothing for their
families. Their tables were supplied with bread and vegetables from their
own fields, and with pork and beef of their own growing. And they were
so habituated to toil that labor to them was no hardship. They were healthy,
and consequently happy. "Why," said an old settler, "the forest lands,
where we were generally at work, smelt so pure and sweet that we drank
in health at every breath, and the doctors found mighty poor picking."
In 1880 Northfield had a population of 2,836. In 1888 it had sixteen
common school districts and one Union graded school district, and employed
two male and thirty-five female teachers, at an average weekly salary of
$23.83 for the former and $4.78 for the latter. The whole number of scholars
who attended any school during the year was 575, of whom thirty-nine attended
private schools. The entire income for all school purposes was $6,773.30,
while the whole amount expended was $5,070.95, with I. P. BOOTH, superintendent.
NORTHFIELD (p. o.), commonly called the Depot Village, is incorporated,
and has the usual complement of municipal officers. It is located a mile
and a half or two miles east of the center of the town, on Dog river and
the Central Vermont railroad. This village mainly sprung into existence
on the completion of the Vermont Central railroad, and the establishment
of the offices and shops of that corporation here, about 1848. The village
enjoyed a very prosperous existence from that time until the offices and
shops were removed to St. Albans. Since then its manufacturing interests
have materially declined, but it is still an attractive village. It is
built partly upon the Plain near the river, but mainly upon irregular and
elevated terraces from thirty to 150 feet above that stream. It contains
a fine park (Central Square), five churches (Congregational, Episcopal,
Methodist, Roman Catholic, and Universalist), a National bank, a Savings
bank, fifteen or twenty stores, a good graded and and High school, Norwich
University, and is still a place of considerable manufacturing. Besides
its excellent schools Northfield village supports a circulating library
of 1,000 volumes.
GOULDSVILLE (p. o.) is near the north line of Northfield, and is
also on Dog river and the railroad. The leading industry of this little
village is the woolen-mills of J. GOULD & Son, and which is the main
support of the place.
SOUTH NORTHFIELD (p. o.) is situated on a mill stream, and has a
main street extending along the brook which furnishes the power to run
a sash and blind shop, grist-mill, and other machinery. It contains a school-house
and from twenty to twenty-five dwellings.
NORTHFIELD CENTER is a hamlet just south of Northfield village.
It contains a store and about thirty dwellings, built around a level three-sided
park or common.
The proprietors of Northfield saw that they could serve their own
interests in the sale of their lands if they could provide a saw-mill to
cut lumber for the pioneers to build their cabins, and a grist-mill to
grind their grain. Hence they made provision for building both, several
months before there was a single inhabitant in town. Soon after Judge PAINE
built the first mills in town, Aquillo JONES built a saw-mill near the
Williamstown line, on the same stream, near the outlet of Bennett's pond.
When the water is very high a stream also runs north from it into Berlin
pond. As the settlements of the town increased saw-mills were built at
convenient distances, so that the inhabitants of Northfield escaped the
hardships of going long distances for the indispensable necessaries of
food and lumber. J. K. EGERTON says: "There have been seventeen saw-mills
in Northfield, and nine grist-mills at different times." Wool-carding and
cloth-dressing was also one of the early industries. Judge PAINE built
a woolen-mill, to manufacture broadcloth, at a cost of $40,000, so early
that it is said to have been built in the woods. He employed from 175 to
200 operatives. Brickmaking was once an important industry.
The Northfield Black Slate Company was incorporated in July, 1885,
with George NICHOLS, president; C. A. EDGERTON, clerk and treasurer; and
A. E. DENNY, manager. The quarry is located near Northfield village, and
was opened about twenty years ago by parties from Boston under the firm
name of "Adams Slate and Tile Co.," which continued the business about
fifteen years, when it was succeeded by the Hillside Slate Co. This firm
continued the business until the property passed to the present company.
The production is now about 3,000 squares per year. For depth and durability
of color, softness and tenacity of texture, this slate is unsurpassed by
any in America.
Albert C. CHASE's carriage shop, opposite the depot, was built about
1870. Mr. CHASE, with various partners, carried on the business the ensuing
eight years. The last ten years Mr. CHASE has conducted the business alone.
He gives his attention to building fine carriages to order. His specialty
is in manufacturing hearses, top-buggies, and sleighs.
J. GOULD &' Son's woolen-mills are located at the village of
Gouldsville, on Dog river, which furnishes the power, with steam as auxiliary.
This firm manufactures white flannels, and employs sixty-five hands in
all departments. The mills contain forty-six looms, and the necessary carding
and spinning machinery. In the language of the manufacturers it is a "five
set" mill. As early as 1833 or '34 James GOULD and Erastus PARKER were
manufacturers here, and on the same site. John GOULD and William MOORCROFT
operated the mills from 1852 to 1857, when Joseph GOULD purchased the entire
property. In 1866 Joseph W. GOULD became a partner with his father, with
the firm name of J. GOULD & Son. Under this title this leading industry
of Northfield has since been conducted. In 1868 J. GOULD & Son purchased
the mill built by Walter LITTLE, standing just below theirs, which added
two sets of machinery to their manufacturing capacity, and increased it
to five sets. These buildings were all of wood, and were entirely destroyed
by fire January 31, 1873. The present first-class brick buildings were
erected in 1874. The main building is 110x55 feet, four stories and basement.
Attached is an ell two stories high and 25x40 feet.
G. B. ANDREWS's saw and grist-mills are located on the east branch
of Dog river, on road 33, and have been owned and operated by him since
1879. He has rebuilt both of these mills. The grist-mill is furnished with
one run of stones, driven by water-power with a fall of twenty-three feet.
He sells from six to twelve car-loads of corn and meal, six of feed, and
one of flour per year. He also grinds for merchants about fourteen car
loads of corn, and besides does a large amount of custom grinding annually.
His saw-mill, with a fifteen-feet water-fall, turns out of rough lumber
annually from 100,000 to 300,000 feet, and his shingle-mill, with a water-fall
of eighteen feet, cuts 2,500,000 shingles. Mr. ANDREWS employs from six
to eight men. George F. GLIDDEN's steam saw-mill, located on road 19, has
been owned by him since 1865. He built his present mill on the site of
the old one, in 1872, and a few years later put in steam-power. The mill
is fitted with sawing, planing, matching, shingle, and clapboard machinery.
In 1887 Mr. GLIDDEN cut about 300,000 feet of lumber and 300,000 shingles,
and employed three hands.
Thomas SLADE's grist and flouring-mill is located at the South village,
on the east branch of Dog river, which affords the power. This is the only
flouring-mill in town. The mill has three runs of stones, and grinds over
5,000 bushels of wheat and about the same amount of custom provender per
annum. Mr. SLADE sells about 5,000 bushels of corn and meal and three car
loads of shorts yearly.
Harvey M. CUTLER's saw-mill, on road 9, was purchased by him about
1869, and has been mostly rebuilt. He manufactures about 200,000 feet of
rough and dressed lumber and 250,000 shingles per year. He also does general
millwright work and repairing.
J.B. SHORTRIDGE manufactures doors, sash, blinds, and builders'
furnishings. He commenced business in Northfield, in 1856, and removed
to his present quarters in Paine factory, from Union street, in 1870.
F.J. HOUSTON's grist and planing-mills and spring bed factory are
located on Union street. Mr. HOUSTON has owned this property about seven
years. He has a provender-mill, grinds and sells about a car load of corn
meal and feed per month, and also does custom grinding and planing. He
manufactures, as a specialty, the Monitor spring bed. He sells about 500
of these and 200 mattresses per year.
George H. FISHER's carriage shop, on road 3, was built about 1848,
by Alpheus KATHEN. Mr. FISHER has been its proprietor the past fifteen
years. He manufactures carriages, farm wagons, and sleds, and does repairing.
He also manufactures from 100,000 to 200,000 shingles per annum.
C.W. NELSON's butter tub shop, on road 29, was built in 1887, and
is run by water-power. He manufactures spruce butter tubs.
The firm of F. L. HOWE & Co. was formed in 1881. They have shops
on Main street, where they are manufacturing monumental marble mork, and
dealing in granite monuments, curbing, etc.
Alfred F. SPAULDING established a machine shop on Main street about
1877, where he does general jobbing in machine work and repairing. He also
manufactures his powerful force pump and angular and upright- drills. Of
these he is the inventor and sole proprietor.
Charles D. SAWYER, a marble worker, has been engaged in the business
the last eight years in Northfield, where he still does all kinds of monumental
L.P. HARRIS's grist, saw, and planing-mills, located at Paine factory,
have been conducted by him since 1885. He cuts from 100,000 to 300,000
feet of lumber annually, and does custom planing. He grinds about 20,000
bushels of grain and handles about 12,000 bushels of Western corn per year.
Martin COBLEIGH has shops located at South Northfield, where he
manufactures doors, sash, blinds, and cabinet work. He has been at this
location since 1866. His buildings were burned January 14, 1887, but he
has since rebuilt and put in new machinery.
Charles H. NEWELL's wood turning shop is located at Paine factory.
Mr. NEWELL manufactures fork, hoe, and broom handles, and chair stock.
He consumes from 50,000 to 75,000 feet of rough lumber annually.
Frank I. HARRIS's jobbing machine shop has been conducted by him
Alfred O. Chase has conducted a carriage and repair shop on Main
street since 1878. He does custom work in building and repairing carriages,
wagons, and sleighs.
Northfield National bank was organized in 1866, at the closing up
of the old Northfield bank, which was organized in 1854 under state laws,
and was the first bank chartered in the town. The Northfield National bank
commenced business with a capital of $75,000, which was increased to $100,000
in 1869. Since its organization the bank has paid regular semi-annual dividends.
Dr. George NICHOLS is president and C. A. EDGERTON, cashier.
Northfield Savings bank was organized in 1869, and received its
first deposit May 29, 1869. The aggregate deposits, February 1, 1888, were
$348,993.02. George H. CRANE is president, and J. C. B. THAYER, treasurer,.
who has held the position since the organization of the institution.
Northfield Graded and High School. -- The following has been compiled
from a description by James N. JOHNSON, Esq.: --
The Northfield Graded and High School, the most important public
school in Dog River valley, was established in nearly its present form
in 1870. The High School is the successor of the Northfield Institution,
formerly Northfield Academy, chartered by the legislature in 1846. Gov.
PAINE donated the site in 1850. Through his exertions, aided by Heman CARPENTER,
John L. BUCK, James PALMER, George R. COBLEIGH, Benjamin PORTER, Leander
FOSTER, and the subscriptions of nearly a hundred other public spirited
men, $2,400 was raised for erecting a school building, which was accomplished
in 1851, at a cost of $2,600. The house was dedicated and opened, in September
of the year last named, as Northfield Academy. In 1854, by the act of the
legislature, the name was changed to Northfield Institution. The school
had a successful existence until during the war of the Rebellion, when,
not having any endowments, it began to decline. In 1870 a permanent arrangement
was made with the village school district to take the building, repair
it, and institute in its stead a graded and High school, free for all pupils
in the district. This was accomplished through the friends of popular education,
notably Heman CARPENTER, James N. JOHNSON, Rev. William S. HAZEN, T. L.
SALISBURY, A. S. BRAMAN, and J. S. RICHARDSON. The school opened in September,
1870, with 331 pupils. This building was burned in 1876, and the season
ensuing the present fine building was erected in its place, at a cost of
about $11,000. It requires a yearly outlay of from $2,500 to $3,000 to
sustain this school. But it makes it possible for every boy and girl in
the district to obtain a good academic education and prepare for college.
The number of different scholars in all grades the past school year was
271, fifty-six of whom attended the High school, four studied Greek, sixteen
studied Latin, eight French or German; four graduated, and two are going
to college. The school library contains 463 volumes.
Norwich University. -- This institution was founded by Capt. Alden
PARTRIDGE, in 1819, and was known as the American Literary, Scientific,
and Military Academy. It retained the name until November 6, 1834, when
a charter of incorporation was granted it by the state of Vermont under
the name of Norwich University. Thus was founded the first scientific,
classical, and military college in the Union. This new departure met with
universal favor, and its halls were soon crowded with young men from every
state in the Union. In March, 1866, the university buildings at Norwich
were destroyed by fire and the university was removed to Northfield, Vt.,
where the citizens offered fine grounds and commodious barracks. Here the
same system of instruction and military discipline is maintained, and many
young men have been enabled to go forth to fill high positions in various
professions. This was the first institution in the country to lay down
a purely scientific course of study, and up to the time of the Rebellion
the only one which embraced in its curriculum thorough military, classical,
and scientific courses. By her work for half a century Norwich University
merits the general confidence of the public. Special attention having been
given to military science and engineering, her graduates have become particularly
distinguished as army officers and civil engineers, some having risen to
the foremost ranks of military commanders. The Roster of Alumni and Past
Cadets contains more than fifteen hundred names, and the institution is
to-day in a most prosperous condition. When, in 1861, the nation called
for defenders, the graduates of Norwich University were sought for throughout
the loyal states as officers, and the long list of names on her army-roll
shows how nobly they responded. So generously did the under-graduates respond
to the call upon the institution, that for two years there was no commencement,
all of the senior class and many from other classes having gone into the
army. The Norwich University roll of honor contains the names of twelve
general officers, forty colonels, and a host of officers of lower grades,
brave men and true, a large number of whom laid down their lives that their
country might live. It has ever been the design of this university, while
disciplining the minds of young men, to give them, at the same time, that
practical instruction that best fits men for business life. How well this
work has been done let the story of the lives of those who have gone out
from her halls bear record.
In the late civil war Northfield nobly responded to the President's
call for help. May 2, 1861, the "New England Guards of Northfield" were
mustered into the service of the United States, and were soon on the way
to the seat of war. The company was composed as follows: William H. BOYNTON,
captain; Charles A. WEBB, first lieutenant; Francis B. GOVE, second lieutenant;
Charles C. STEARNS, Joseph C. BATES, John RANDALL, Silas B. TUCKER, sergeants;
Wesley C. HOWES, John H. HURLEY, John L. MOSELEY, Adin D. SMITH, corporals;
and thirty-two privates. According to the Adjutant-General's Report, Northfield
furnished during the war seventy-four nine months' men, 188 for three years,
three for one year; thirty-nine reenlisted, twenty-one were drafted; seven
of these procured substitutes, two of them entered service, and seven enlisted
into the United States navy.
[*from the American Encylopedia] was born in
Brooklyn, Conn., January 21, 1757, and died in Williamstown, Vt., April
28, 1842. He graduated at Harvard College in 1781, and removed to Vermont
in 1784. Mr. PAINE was a scholar, a well read lawyer, and also a farmer,
a road maker, and a pioneer in the manufacture of American cloths, for
which purpose he constructed an establishment in Northfield. He was a member
and secretary of the convention to revise the constitution in 1786 ; member
of the legislature in 1787-91; a judge of the Supreme Court in 1991-95;
United States Senator in 1795-1801; and United States judge, "appointed
by President John Adams," in 1801. In 1789 he was one of the commissioners
to settle the controversy between New York and Vermont; president of the
Vermont Colonization society, of which, as well as to Dartmouth College
and the "University of Vermont," he was a liberal benefactor ; and Fellow
of the American and Northern Academies of Arts and Sciences. In 1782 he
pronounced the first oration before the Phi Beta Kappa society of H. U.,
and was elected its president in 1789 "Mr. PAINE built a factory in Northfield
to make broadcloth, when it was a wilderness, at a cost of $40,000. This
factory was 180 feet long, forty-two feet wide, and contained six sets
of woolen machinery, employed from 175 to 200 workmen, and indirectly several
Ithamar ALLEN, from Gill, Mass., settled in the eastern part of
Northfield with his family at a very early date. His son Ithamar, Jr.,
married Nancy, daughter of Aquillo JONES, and about 1803 located upon and
cleared the farm west of the river, at the falls village, and it is still
occupied by his descendants. The whole valley of Dog river from the depot
village to the Berlin line was then covered with forest. The children of
Ithamar, Jr., and Nancy ALLEN were Elijah, born in 1803; William, born
in 1805; Charles, born in 1808; Sally, born in 1811; Chloe, born in 1812;
Amanda, born in 1814; Edna, born in 1816; Warren, born in 1819; and Adaline,
born in 1825. William ALLEN is now the oldest survivor, and lives upon
the farm where he was born. William married Esther E. LIBBY, of Strafford,
and had two sons, Harrison P., who served three years in the late war,
and John W., and three daughters, viz.: Emma (Mrs. C. W. CHANDLER), Edna
(Mrs. LOCKLIN), and Miss Marietta C. Nancy, the eldest daughter of William
ALLEN, married James SMITH, and had one daughter, Hattie E. (Mrs. F. U.
Capt. Abel KEYES was born in Putney, Vt., September 11, 1773. He
was a carpenter and builder, and in 1790 settled in Northfield, with the
impression that its fine water-power would make of it a great manufacturing
town. In the spring of 1791 he bought of Judge PAINE 100 acres of land
on East hill, including the mills. Here he remained about five years, improved
the mills, and sold his land to his brother William, and the mills to Judge
PAINE. In 1807 Capt. KEYES bought a saw-mill and a few acres of land of
David DENNY, in South Northfield. He enlarged and improved the saw-mill,
built a grist-mill, potashery, and several dwellings. In three years (1810)
he sold his property to C. W. HOUGHTON, of Montpelier. Through his energy
he had made an active and flourishing little village of the place in three
years' time, known as "Slab City." In 1839, after moving from one location
to another, this pushing, restless, industrious, enterprising man emigrated
to Illinois, and in one year more moved to Lake Mills, Wisconsin, where
he died in 1848, aged seventy-five years. Capt. KEYES was for nearly forty
years one of the most thoroughly active men in Northfield. About forty
buildings that he erected in Northfield are his testimonials as an active
builder. The old yellow meeting-house was ono of them. While in Northfield
he was captain of militia, justice of the peace, selectman, and representative.
David DENNY was born in Windsor, Vt., January 7, 1764, and was one
of the earliest settlers in Northfield. He was a collector of taxes, and
held a number of town offices. He located on the hill, near the South village,
where his grandson David now resides. The numerous family of DENNYs in
Northfield are his descendants. He married Betsey SPOONER, and they had
nine children, viz.: Paul S., born in 1792; Asenath, born in 1794; Adolphus,
born in 1796; Amasa, born in 1798; Sally, born in 1800; Samuel, born in
1803; Harriet, born in 1805; Eliza, born in 1807; and Joseph, born in 1810.
Mr. Denny died in 1821.
Aaron MARTIN, of Scotch descent, was born in Windham, Conn., in
1742. He married Eunice FLINT. Mr. MARTIN died in Williamstown, Vt., March
12, 1819. Mr. and Mrs. MARTIN had born to them eight sons and seven daughters,
fourteen of whom reared families. The sons all settled in Williamstown
about 1793, and their descendants are the most numerous of any family in
that town, and are also numerous in the adjacent towns. Aaron MARTIN, Jr.,
came to Randolph as early as 1791, remained one season, and returned to
his home in Connecticut on foot, in three days, a journey of sixty miles
per day. He located his home on West hill, where he resided until the close
of his life, April 13, 1865, aged eighty-nine years. He was prominent in
town affairs, and held several of the offices. He was thrice married. His
first wife, Harriet MARTYN, was the mother of two sons and a daughter.
His second wife was Hannah WISE. His third wife, Polly BURNHAM, was the
mother of two sons and four daughters. Allen MARTIN, second son of Aaron,
Jr., was born June 21, 1798. He married Betsey NELSON, of Orange, and settled
on a farm in Barre, in 1822, where he resided until his death, fifty-five
years after. Mr. and Mrs. MARTIN were parents of eight sons and two daughters.
Their son Newton, of Gouldsville, now owns the old homestead in Barre.
He was selectman in Northfield in 1885 and '86. Mr. MARTIN married Martha
William COCHRANE came to that part of Northfield which was annexed
from Waitsfield about 1799. His son Stephen, born in September, 1801, was
the first child born in that part of this town, and is the oldest living
man born on Northfield soil. Stephen COCHRANE is the only survivor of the
eight children of William, and the only one that ever married. He was a
merchant tailor, commenced business in 1827, (the first in Northfield,)
and continued over forty years.
Elieda and Justus BROWN were among the first settlers in Dog River
valley in Berlin. They located upon the farms now owned by William and
Charles DEWEY, about 1790. They were from Windham, Conn. Elieda was twice
married, and raised a large family. He had served through the Revolutionary
war before he was married, and late in life drew a pension. He died in,
Wisconsin, aged ninety-four years. His son, Anson D. BROWN, was a harnessmaker,
and was in business in Northfield six or eight years. He died in, Gouldsville.
His son, Albert H. BROWN, has been engaged in harnessmaking, in Gouldsville
Edward RYAN was born in County Cork, Ireland, in 1826, came to America.
in 185x, and soon settled in Northfield. In 1858 he married Ellen LEAHY,.
and has five sons and two daughters.
Gov. Charles PAINE was born in Williamstown, Vt., April 10, 1799!
At the age of seventeen years he entered Harvard College, where his father
had graduated in his early manhood and became one of the most noted men
of his time in Vermont. After a four years' course he graduated with honor,
and was regarded with respect and esteem by each and every one of his fellow
students. "On his return from college," said Hon.. John WHEELER, of Burlington,
and a former president of the university, "he showed no inclination for
professional study, but asked to enter upon the employment of practical
life, both to lessen the labors of his father and to advance his own interests.
This was allowed without much thought, but it was thought he would soon
grow weary of it and call for a different mode of employment. ` I was greatly
surprised,' said his father, `at the readiness with which he took hold
of labor, the energy with which he followed it, and the capacity and completeness
with which he finished it. I found he could do as much and as well as I
could in my best days.' Those of us who live in Vermont know that such
a parent could scarcely give higher praise." Charles PAINE was elected
governor of Vermont in 1841 and '42.
Hon. E. P. WALTON said of him at his funeral: "The youngest man,
I think, in the gubernatorial office in the state, I am sure there never
was any man who more highly esteemed the claims of age and wisdom and experience,
or was more ready to distinguish and encourage whoever among the young
gave hopeful promise of an honorable and successful public career." He
gave his great influence in the community of Northfield to build up its
schools and churches, and contributed generously from his abundant means.
He built a church near his mills from his own funds, for the benefit of
his operatives and their families, which was open for the entire public.
He gave the site for the first academy, and $500 towards erecting a suitable
building. The great event of his life and his crowning glory was the building
of the Vermont Central railroad, and to him more than any other man should
be ascribed the honor of the achievement, although he was ably assisted
by James R. LANGDON, E. P. WALTON, E. P. JEWETT, and the late Daniel BALDWIN.
The road was built, but in a financial view (and in that view only) it
was disastrous to those who were stock owners. We again quote from Mr.
"His ambition in that great undertaking was of a character
which the world justly esteems to be noble; he aimed to win for himself
an honorable public name, by rendering a great public service. However
much of direct personal advantage he naturally and properly may have expected
from it, I am sure his chief purpose was to win an honorable name. In the
brightest days he looked joyfully to this reward, and in the darkest, when
every other hope seemed to fail, this remained to solace him. It was on
one of these darkest days, and at a time when courage, hope, and health
were all failing, that he said to me, in his familiar mode of conversation,
`Well, Walton, whatever may become of the corporation, they cannot rob
us of the road! It is done; it will be run; and the people will, at any
rate, reap the blessings which we designed. Oh ! if it were not for that,
I really believe I should die."'
The Hon. Heman CARPENTER truthfully and appropriately said in his
eulogy of him, in referring to the building of this stupendous work, "There
is his monument!" He loved his fellow men, and he avowed the significant
poem, "Abou Ben Adhem," was his religious creed.
Joel HILDRETH came from New Hampshire to Roxbury in 1802, and settled
in the northwestern part of the town. His was the fifteenth family in Roxbury.
His son Jared, who married Arthusa RICE, was then but twelve years old.
They were parents of one son, Samuel M. HILDRETH. Jared HILDRETH was a
soldier six months in the War of 1812, and his father was a volunteer and
went to Plattsburgh when it was invaded by the British.
Josiah W. WILLIAMS, born in Strafford, Vt., in 1818, came with his
father, John WILLIAMS, to Northfield in 1832. John WILLIAMS made the first
clearing on the farm where his son Josiah W. now lives. He was a volunteer
from Strafford to defend Plattsburgh in the War of 1812, and died in Roxbury
at the age of seventy-two years. He was the father of seven sons and three
daughters. Josiah W., before mentioned, married Delight SMITH, of Roxbury.
He bought the farm where he now lives, in 1846. Mr. and Mrs. WILLIAMS have
had ten children born to them, and reared three to mature age, viz.: Van
Ness F. (deceased), Etta M. (Mrs. Willie DUNSMOOR, deceased), and Ella
M. (Mrs. Herbert W. KIBBE), of Utica.
Sampson BATES was an early settler in the east part of Roxbury.
He married Keziah WARDEN, and reared three sons and three daughters, viz.:
Orin, Jacob W., Joseph, Emily, Lucinda, and Olive M. Orin married, first,
Lucretia WEBSTER, who was mother of three children. His second wife was
Louisa M. HEDGES. Their children are G. C., Jacob, Frank, and one daughter.
Jacob, a farmer, is deceased. Joseph is a farmer in Roxbury. Emily (Mrs.
Loyal. C. RICH) has two sons, Alonzo L. and Elmer W., and one daughter,
Rose P. Lucinda married George BLISS, and is a widow. Olive M. died unmarried.
David HADLEY was born in Sandwich, N. H., in 1778. In 1803 he married,
and the next, year he and his wife, Hannah HADLEY, settled in Northfield
on the farm now owned by his son judge David W. Mr. HADLEY died in 1811,
at the early age of thirty-three years. In 1816 Mrs. HADLEY united in marriage
with John BROWN, and lived to the advanced age of nearly ninety-two years.
Judge David W. HADLEY, before mentioned, was born in 18o8. He married
Louisa BROWN, of Williston, Vt., and settled on the homestead. Their children
are Helen M., Louisa J., Jane E., Lucina A., Caroline A., Mary E., George
W., and Flora L. Judge HADLEY, now at the age of four-score years, has
the satisfaction that in his long life he sustains a well earned and enviable
reputation, and has been honored by his townsmen with many positions of
trust. He represented his town in the legislature of 1843, '45, '56, and
'70; was assistant judge of Washington County Court in 1850 and 1851; and
has served his town as selectman nineteen years.
Joseph WILLIAMS, a pioneer of Northfield, married Pamelia ROBINSON,
and settled on the farm where his grandson, A. L. WILLIAMS, now lives.
His children were Phebe, born in 1806 ; George, born in 1807, settled in
Roxbury; Sally, born in 1809, married George HARLOW; Ira, born in 1812;
Oliver, born in 1814, and died in Middlesex; and Alta, who died in Roxbury.
Ira married Emeline THRESHER, and passed his life upon the paternal homestead.
He died in 1851, aged thirty-nine years.
Eleazer LOOMIS was a soldier in the Revolutionary war and a company
officer under Capt. Paul BRIGHAM, afterwards lieutenant-governor of Vermont.
Mr. LOOMIS was granted a tract of land for his service in the army, located
in Norwich, Vt. This land he exchanged with Gov. BRIGHAM for land in Northfield,
which he transferred to his sons Eleazer and Dyer. When these sons were
respectively aged nineteen and seventeen years, they left their home in
Hinsdale, Mass., and came to Northfield and settled on their land on the
mountain. They experienced the hardships and privations incidental to pioneer
life. The mountains and forests were then infested with bears, wolves,
and catamounts. Their howlings made night hideous, and, as they said, made
their hair stand on end. Eleazer went to his corn-crib one morning when
a huge bear, more bold than welcome, jumped down from the crib. This alarmed
the young man, and to avoid bruin he ran round on the other side, and the
bear and he met face to face. They at once conceived a mutual dislike for
each other's company, and turned and ran round the crib again. From their
elevation they could look down into. the beautiful valley of Dog river,
which was then a primeval forest. After a few years these brothers moved
to the "North Corner," where William H. LOOMIS, son of Eleazer, now resides,
and where he was born in 1818. Eleazer, born in 1785, married Polly BUCK,
who was born in 1787, in Connecticut. Their children were Roxana, Eleazer,
Louisa, Cynthia, William H., Mariette, and Adaline. Mr. LOOMIS died in
1866, and Mrs. LOOMIS in 1835. Dyer LOOMIS was born in 1787. He married
Lucy, daughter of Thomas AVERILL. In 1824 he removed to Middlesex, Vt.,
He was a successful farmer, and acquired a competence. Mr. and Mrs. LOOMIS
were parents of eleven children. Mr. LOOMIS died in 1895, and his wife
in 1877. William H. LOOMIS, son of Eleazer, before mentioned, married,
in December, 1847, Miss Eliza M. ANDREWS, of Berlin. He taught a school
ten winters, and has served as justice of the peace a long term of years.
The children of Mr. and Mrs. William H. LOOMIS are George B., Jennie E.,
and Edmund A.
Silas RICE, a Revolutionary soldier and pensioner, moved into Northfield
in 1810, and settled on West hill. His son Silas, Jr., from Acworth, had
settled in the neighborhood a short time before. Soon after Silas, Jr.,
sold out to Harry AINSWORTH and returned to New Hampshire. Titus RICE,
son of Silas, Sr., was born in Rockingham, Vt., August 2, 1798. He married
Louisa JONES, who was born in Charlestown, N. H., May 1, 1801, and settled
on the homestead with his aged parents. He was industrious and a hard worker;
and later in life was crippled with rheumatism. Mrs. RICE's mother lived
to the great age of ninety-eight years, and could read at that age without
spectacles. It happened that Mrs. RICE was alone with an invalid son of
her own, and Mr. RICE's father and mother, who were so aged and , infirm
that they were unable to do anything for themselves. At this time the wind
was blowing strong. Mrs. RICE thought she heard the crackling of fire,
and looking about she found the roof of their house in flames. With admirable
presence of mind she carried water quite a distance to the attic, and put
the fire out on the inside so she could open the scuttle. She then climbed
to the roof and quenched the fire there also.
Ariel EGERTON was born in Norwich, Conn., June 8, 1796. His father
moved with his family to Brookfield, Vt. Mr. EGERTON came to Northfield
in the fall of 1811. The following winter he taught school on the East
hill, and the next he taught near Judge PAINE's factory. In 1815 he built
a house and store at the Center village. His store was the first building
erected in that village for business purposes. He continued there in trade
until the year 1819. In 1824 he bought of judge PAINE the grist-mill on
the East hill, which he carried on about five years, when the mill was
abandoned. In 1829. he bought a large building at the South Village, and
started a chair factory, which he kept in operation about five years, and
then removed from Northfield. Mr. EGERTON was among the first in this vicinity
to 'observe the injurious effects arising from the use of liquors, and
very early he became active in the cause of temperance. In the winter of
1826 he invited the people living in his neighborhood to meet at their
school-house and listen to some statements with regard to the use and abuse
of intoxicating drinks. About forty people were present, and that was,
as we believe, the first attempt in this state, aside from pulpit addresses,
to present the temperance question in a. public lecture. In 1828 about
twenty of the citizens of the town united to form a temperance society.
Mr. EGERTON was elected its first president, and Orange HOVEY, secretary.
Mr. EGERTON delivered an address in the Center meeting-house, which was
published in the Montpelier Watchman and other papers in the state. Mr.
EGERTON died in Quechee, Vt., in 1859. In November, 1813, he united in
marriage with Abigail P., only daughter of Captain Abel KEYES, who was
born in Putney, Vt., August 11, 1796. Their children were Almira E., Laura
E., Olive S., Cynthia M., Abby S., Charles B., John S., and Joseph K. Joseph
Keyes EGERTON lived in Quechee, Vt., until the death of his father, when
he moved to Norwich, Vt., where he resided fifteen years, then came to
Northfield in March, 1877. He married Sarah F. TYLER, of Claremont, N.
H., in 1856, and they were parents of two children, viz.: Edith K., born
in 1858, and Fred T., born in 1862. Mr. EGERTON has had a number of offices
conferred upon him, Which he has filled with credit to himself and to his
fellow citizens. He was clerk in J. C. BROOKS's store, in Hartford, four
years, one in Cleaveland's, at Brookfield, and one year with CAMP &
THAYER, in Northfield. He was postmaster at Quechee from 1853 to 1861,
then removed to Norwich; was town agent, town treasurer, and justice of
the peace; joined the Odd Fellows in Northfield in 1852, and the Masons
in 1854, and was Grand Lecturer of the Grand Lodge of Vermont three years,
from 1867 to 1870. He is now engaged in the insurance business, and is
the clerk of the town of Northfield.
Thomas COBURN came from Brookfield, Me., and settled on West hill,
in Northfield, in 1815. He bought wild land and cleared it for a farm.
He married Rebecca WARREN, of Monmouth, Me. Their only son, Washington,
born in August, 1816, has always lived in Northfield. He married Harriet
N. THOMPSON. He and three of his sons, George F., Benjamin F., and Charles
H., served in the late war for the Union. Benjamin F. COBURN married Lucinda,
daughter of William SULHAM, of Cabot.
Joel SIMONDS settled in Northfield in 1816. His permanent location
was east of Paine Mountain, and the homestead is now owned by his son,
Rev. Joel SIMONDS. The old farm house, built by Mr. SIMONDS in 1828, is
still standing. Mr. SIMONDS was one of the founders of the Christian church
and one of its deacons, and was influential in building the first school-house
in the Loomis district. He died at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Luman
JUDD, in Strafford. He married Lydia, daughter of John BRALEY, and their
children were Daniel, Polly, Joel, Horace, Albert, Clark, Charles, Rufus,
Seth, John, Lydia, Harriet, and John. Rev. Joel SIMONDS, their son, resides
at the Center village, is a minister of the Christian church, and has spent
most of his past life in Northfield. He married Olive, daughter of Jonathan
and Betsey (CUMMINGS) PITKIN, of Hartford, Vt., from Hartford, Conn. Rev.
Clark SIMONDS, another son, married, first, Abagail DREW, and for his second
wife Rhoda MCDONALD. He has been a Christian preacher forty-eight years.
Samuel DUNSMOOR came with his bride (Anna POWERS) from Charlestown,
N. H., and settled on West hill, in Northfield, in 1814. He cleared the
farm where he first settled, and resided on it until 1848. He enlisted
in the War of 1812, was a volunteer to go to the battle of Plattsburgh,
and in consequence was a pensioner. Mr. DUNSMOOR was a member of the Free
Baptist church. His youngest son, Edwin, born in 1835, served three years
in the late war. William, son of Samuel DUNSMOOR, was born in 1815, married
Maria AINSWORTH, and died at the age of sixty-eight years. His children
were Walter H., Alice, Elsie, Francis, Victoria, Willie E., Ida, Mary,
Frank, Ella, and Kate, and three who died in infancy. Walter H. DUNSMOOR
married Julia, daughter of Samuel WALES, of Roxbury. The issue of this
marriage is four daughters and two sons.
Samuel DOLE, a native of Bedford, N. H., removed from Danville,
Vt., to Northfield, in 1818, and settled on Dole hill. After a residence
there of ten years he removed to the South village, and conducted a saw-mill
and a grist-mill. Mr. DOLE returned to Dole hill in 1838 of '39, and died
there in August, 1841, aged fifty-three years. He married Mary SARGENT,
of Danville, and their children were Christopher, Jane, Mary, Cynthia,
Harriet, Samuel, George, Jason, and French. Christopher married Harriet,
daughter of Amos A. HOWES, and spent his life on the farm now owned by
his son, Rev. Walter HOWES. He died in June, 1888, aged sixty-six years.
Their children were Charles, Heman, Walter, Harry C., Mary M., Martha A.,
and Jason E. Charles DOLE was seventeen years professor of political economy
in Norwich University, and nine years superintendent of schools. Heman
died in the Union army. Rev. Walter is a Universalist clergyman, and Harry
C. is a journalist. Jason E. DOLE married Anna S. PIKE, of Stowe, in 1863.
Their children are Ella M. (Mrs. DES ROCHERS), Hermon E., Amy A., George
W., Fred J., and Arthur L.
Samuel FISK was born April 13, 1795. He married Keziah, daughter
of Thomas AVERILL, September 7, 1820, and settled at once on Dog river.
March 7, 1831, he removed to the farm where his son Elliott C. now lives,
on West hill. He was a substantial farmer and highly respected. Mr. FISK
died July 24, 1848. His children, all born in Northfield, were Levina A.,
born in 1821; Eveline M., born in 1827; Elliott C., born in 1832; and Elizabeth
A., born in 1836. Mrs. FISK survived her husband many years and resided
with her son Elliott C. on the homestead. She was honored by a surprise
party on her eightieth birthday. Levina A., her daughter, married Daniel
D. DYKE, in 1840. Mr. DYKE came to Northfield from Cavendish in 1831, and
died in 1873. The children of Mr. and Mrs. DYKE are Frederick C., Maria
E., Elliott C., who enlisted in Co. H, 17th Vt. Regt., and died at City
Point, Va., August 25, 1864, Samuel J., Ella L., and Carlos E. Eveline
M. FISK married Almon LATHAM, who was born in 1821. Their children now
living are Emma L., Eunice M. (ROBERTS), Addie E., and Eva L.
Charles H. DUTTON, son of Ashley H. DUTTON who was an early settler
in Moretown, was born in Moretown in 1843. He has been a farmer and employed
in woolen-mills generally. In the late war he was a soldier in the 3d Vt.
Battery, where he served to the close of the war.
Isaac KINSMAN moved to Northfield from Williamstown in 1820, and
settled on West hill. He died at Gouldsville. He married Matilda KNAPP,
who bore him eleven children, of whom Mrs. Zilpha BALCH, Mrs. Philura CARPENTER,
and Mrs. Diantha CHAMBERLIN are living. Zilpha, his second daughter, married
William D. BALCH, who served in the war for our Union,. and died in the
service of his country, at New Orleans, October 12, 1862. Seven of their
ten children are now living.
David and Jonathan RICH were born in Strafford, Vt., where their
ancestors from Connecticut were pioneer settlers. About 1820 David and
Jonathan wended their way to Washington county. December 5, 1822, David
married Sophia COBURN, and settled in the southwestern corner of Berlin.
They enjoyed the unusual long period of sixty-five years of wedded life,
and reared six sons and three daughters. Three of their sons, Alden, Luther,
and Hollis, and two daughters, Luvia (Mrs. LOCKLIN) and Julia (Mrs. SMITH),
still survive and reside at Northfield falls. Jonathan RICH married Prunella
COREY and settled in Northfield. They were parents of ten children, two
of whom,. Eugenia and Anna, reside at Northfield falls.
Samuel U. RICHMOND, Esq., born in 1803, came to Northfield with
his father in 1823. He was prominent in the Methodist church, and a leader
in the Democratic party. No man was ever turned hungry from his door. He
was prompt, industrious, well regulated, and his word was as good as his
bond. He moved to the depot village in 1867, and died very suddenly in
1873. He married Sophia. daughter of Capt. Henry KNAPP.
Samuel L. ADAMS, born in Brookfield, in October, 1796, married Harriet
COBLEIGH, in July, 1828, and settled in Northfield. He was a believer in
the doctrine of the restitution of all things, and a good Mason. His wife
died in 1849. Mr. ADAMS died at the home of his oldest daughter, in Revere,
Mass., in December, 1877, aged eighty-one years. His remains were brought
to Northfield and buried at the Center cemetery with Masonic honors.
Hiram HENRY was born in Alstead, N. H., January 14, 1804. He came
to Northfield and settled on West hill. Afterwards he bought the Col. ROBINSON
farm, on East hill, where his son John now lives, and where he died in
1851. He married Polly BEAN, of Gilmanton, N. H., who was born January
8, 1805. Their children were Jane A., born in 1828; Johnson H., born in
1829; John, born in 1833; Mary, born in 1844; and Martha, born in 1846.
All were born in Northfield. John Henry, son of Hiram, married Helen M.
FOSS, (who was a native of Concord, N. H.,) in January, 1859. He has lived
at his present home the last fifty years, and has reared five daughters
and three sons.
Amos HOWES was born in Windham, Conn., in 1792. He married Melinda„
daughter of Libbeus BENNETT, Esq., who was born in Bernardston, Mass.,
in 1799. Their children, all born in Chelsea, are Augusta, born in 1820;
Harriet, born in 1822; Fannie, born in 1827, Lucinda, born in 1830; Maria
M., born in 1832; Elizabeth, born in 1834; Seymour, born in 1837 Adelia
L., born in 1840; Edward H., born in 1843; and Libbeus, born in ,1847.
Edward H. HOWES married Susan S. PUTNEY and has two sons.
Caleb WINCH, from Troy, N. H., settled on a farm on Starkweather
hill, Northfield, in 1826. He married Lucy FARRAL, and their children were
Eliza, William, and Caleb M. His son William, born in 1819, an honored
deacon of the Congregational church, married Lydia NYE and settled on the
home farm. Their children are George W., born in 1845; Caleb M., born in
1847; Susan E., born in 1850; John H., born 1855; and Samuel W., born in
1858. Dr. John H. WINCH, son of William, began the study of medicine with
Dr. W. J. SAWIN, of Chicopee Falls, Mass., graduated from the Medical department
of the University of Vermont in the class of 1880, and located for the
practice of his profession, in Northfield. In November, 188o, he married
Ella M. SYLVESTER, of his native town.
Dr. Daniel JOHNSON was born in Sheldon, Vt., in 1853, fitted for
college at the Vermont Methodist Seminary, graduated from Dartmouth College
in the class of 1878, and from the Medical department of that institution
in 1881. He began practice in Highgate, Vt., and about two years after,
in April, 1883, he settled in Northfield, where he has a constantly increasing
practice. In 1881 he married Miss Minnie E. GREGG, of Northfield.
Marvin SIMONS, Esq., was born in Williamstown, Vt., December 11,
1806, and settled in Northfield in 1829, where he resided until his decease,
in 1829. He was one of Northfield's most respected citizens, and had shared
in the honors and responsibilities of the town's affairs. He served nineteen
years as justice of the peace, was selectman twelve years, and held during
his life many positions of trust involving large amounts of property. His
sound judgement and unswerving integrity fitted him to discharge impartially
and acceptably all the duties delegated to him by his townsmen. March 24,
1829, he was united in marriage with Olive FISK, of Williamstown, who was
born December 11, 1806. Their children were Marcellus M., Lycurgus L. (deceased);
Darwin A., Cordelia J. (Mrs. J. W. GOULD), Olive M. (deceased), Alma A.
(Mrs. D. R, MELCHER), of Cambridgeport, Mass., and William G. Darwin A.
and William G. SIMONS are extensive dealers in house furnishings at Manchester,
N. H. Olive, widow of Marvin SIMONS, still survives, at the great age of
eighty-two years, and resides at Gouldsville.
James STEELE was born in Antrim, N. H., in 1793. In 1815 he married
Esther SMITH, in East Roxbury. In April, 1829, Mr. STEELE, with his wife
and three children, removed from Brookfield to Northfield. He drew his
goods the last two miles on a hand sled, through the woods, without a road,
to his log cabin covered with hemlock bark. This domicile had neither floor,
doors, windows, or fireplace. Their fire was built on the ground in the
center of the cabin; the smoke escaped through an aperture in the roof
; light was admitted through oiled paper pasted over holes cut in the walls;
and a blanket was hung up for a door. Mr. STEELE died at his homestead,
April 16, 1869. Mrs. STEELE survived until December 29, 1875. Their children
are Fannie E., Sylvanus, Marcia M., James E., S. Warren, and Frederick
W. James, Jr., married Esther SMITH, and settled on West hill in Northfield.
John H. BLODGETT, a native of New Hampshire, came with a family
to Roxbury. At the age of twenty-one years he went to work for Judge PAINE,
in his factory, and remained in his employ about five years. He married
Lucinda ROYCE, and they were parents of Orlando F., born in 1832, and Cordelia
E., born in 1838. Mrs. BLODGETT died in 1877.
Michael Wentworth LEAVITT, the youngest of a family of eight sons
and one daughter, was born in Deerfield, N. H. He was a soldier in the
War of 1812, stationed at Portsmouth, and was discharged from service in
February, 1815. He settled in Northfield in 1827, and died in Chelsea in
1845. His widow, Sally (COLLINS) LEAVITT, born in Salisbury, N. H., in
June, 1796, still survives, and is one of the oldest persons living in
Oscar O. MILLER was born in Charlestown, N. H., and was brought
by his uncle, Hoit GLIDDEN, to Northfield in 1832. He was then an infant,
and was reared in his uncle's family. Mr. MILLER settled on the farm where
he now lives, in 1851.
David C. ROBERTS was born in Westmore, Vt., in 1812, and married
Fanny E. STEELE. Their sons are Francis H., who married Eunice M. LATHAM,
and James H.; their daughters are Alice (Mrs. W. H. H. SLACK), Esther E.
(Mrs. W. W. SPEARIN), Ann O. (Mrs. Henry A. CULVER), and Mary R. (Mrs.
Chandler CULVER). Mr. ROBERTS came to Northfield in 1832. He died in October,
Stephen THRESHER was born in Connecticut, in 1788. He settled on
West hill, in Northfield, in 1831, on the farm now owned and occupied by
Jonathan EDWARDS. His place was then a wilderness, which he cleared and
converted into a home. His son Freeman, then a lad of twelve years, drove
the only cow, with a young calf and some other stock, alone, and the last
four miles through the woods after dark. Later he gained notoriety as a
school teacher. Mr. THRESHER married Sally SMITH, of Randolph, who was
born January 11, 1790. He died in 1857. Mrs. THRESHER survived until 1878.
They were parents of ten children, viz.: Lewis B., Lyman, Mary M., Emeline,
Freeman, Betsey, Cephas, Fidelia, Wilbur, and Infant. Lyman settled where
A. GRANDFIELD now lives, on road 4, and raised three sons and two daughters.
Gurdon RANDALL, a native of Scotland, Conn., born in 1795, married
Laura S. WARNER, of Putney, Vt., who was born in 1803, and settled in Northfield
in 1832. In early life he studied medicine, but never practiced. He followed
the vocation of millwright and carpenter, and held the office of justice
of the peace. He died in r861. Mrs. RANDALL survived until February 16,
1880, aged seventy-six years and nine months. Their children are Gurdon
Paine, born in 1821; Frencis Voltaire, born in 1824; Laura T., born in
1825; Jean J. R., born in 1828; Maria M., born in 1831; Rouena M., born
in 1834; Edward H., born in 1837; Citizen Francis Voltaire, born in 1839
; and Charles Rush, born in 1842. Gurdon P. RANDALL was an architect. He
removed to Chicago, and died there September 20, 1884. Laura T. married
Samuel HILDRETH, of Roxbury, now deceased. J. J. R. RANDALL is an architect
in Rutland. Maria M., who married W. H. MORRIS, is deceased. Rouena M.
is the wife of Col. C. H. JOYCE. Rev. Edward H. is the rector of St. John's
Episcopal church, of Poultney. C. F. V. RANDALL was train dispatcher for
Central Vermont railroad. Charles R. was drowned in childhood.
Hoit GLIDDEN came to Northfield from Unity, N. H., in April, 1832,
and settled on a farm of forty-five acres, which he bought of David CARPENTER.
His purchase included a small clearing and a log cabin. About three years
later he built a more commodious house, in which he lived the remainder
of his life. He died in August, 1884. His widow, Drucilla P. (PIERCE) GLIDDEN,
now (1888) aged eighty-one years, resides with her son George F. Their
daughter Malvina is the wife of Rev. E. W. CULVER.
Wallace FELCH was born in Henniker, N. H., and came to Northfield
in 1852. He married Estella HOUGHTON, daughter of James. Their only daughter,
Della M., married Walter ORDWAY, of Barre. She died February 5, 1888, and
left one child.
Lyman L. PUTNEY was born in New Hampshire in 1825. In 1834 he went
to Northfield and resided in the family of Rev. Joel WINCH. He married
Orinda, daughter of Israel BRIGGS, and their children are Elwin L., Susan
S. (Mrs. E. H. HOWES), and Clara E. (GLIDDEN).
Dan GUILD was born in Coventry, Vt., in 1816, where he resided until
1875. He then removed to Northfield. His first wife, Sophronia (SIAS) GUILD,
bore him six children. In 1866 he married Lucretia R., widow of Theodore
L. SMITH, and daughter of Chester BANCROFT, a descendant of an old family
in Barre. Her two daughters by her first husband are Dora L. (Mrs. W. W.
HOLDEN), and Miss Minnie E. SMITH, a milliner in Northfield.
Gen. Alonzo JACKMAN, LL. D., was born in Thetford, Vt., March 20,
1809. He was the son of Joseph and Sarah (WARNER) JACKMAN. Alonzo's father,
a worthy farmer, died when he was only three years old, and left his mother
in destitute circumstances with three small boys, Enoch, Alonzo, and Joseph.
Young JACKMAN's early life was spent in hard labor for his support, and
with but little opportunity for schooling. In 1820, at the tender age of
eleven years, he and one brother left home never to return again, with
this parting admonition from their mother: "Go for yourselves and remember
there is a God." She had married Eli CLARK in 1816. At the age of twenty-one
Alonzo received from his employer the munificent sum of $4, and two days'
provisions for six years' hard labor. The contract with his employer was
that he should have three months each year at school, which he received
only in part. He passed the next three or four years at labor, with an
occasional term at school. About December 1, 1833, he entered Franklin
Seminary, at Norwich, with the determination of pursuing a regular course
of study. While he was pursuing his own studies in the academies lie taught
mathematics, his favorite branch, to pay his way. Norwich University had
been opened in 1834, and in December, 1835, he entered the senior class
of that institution, and graduated with the degree of A. B. in August,
1836. He was the only graduate that year, and the first from that institution.
Soon after he accepted the chair of mathematics in the "N. U.," and remained
in connection with the university, with the exception of two periods of
about three years each, until his death, February 24, 1879. He wrote and
published an article on the subject of a submarine oceanic magnetic telegraph,
in which he gave detailed plans for the construction and the method of
laying the cable across the Atlantic. The same year (1846) Hon. Amos KENDALL,
president of a telegraph company at Washington, D. C., communicated through
a Philadelphia paper the difficulties of crossing large bodies of water
with a telegraph. Mr. JACKMAN wrote Mr. KENDALL how all difficulties could
be surmounted, and sent the article to periodicals in Washington, Philadelphia,
New York, and Boston, but the editors refused to publish it as too visionary.
He procured its publication in the Vermont Mercury, of Woodstock, Vt.,
in the number issued August 14, 1846. He sent copies of this number to
scientists and prominent men in the United States, Canada, England, and
France. Thus he secured the credit to himself of being the originator of
the plan of this gigantic and beneficent enterprise.
Prof. JACKMAN was an excellent tactician and drill-master, and was
appointed by the governor of New Hampshire brigade drill-master with the
rank of major, and drilled the officers of the militia of that state in
1847 and '48. In 1857 the cadets of Norwich University were organized as
an infantry company under the malitia law, and Prof. JACKMAN was commissioned
captain. In 1859 he was commissioned colonel of the Second Regiment, and
the next year the Vermont militia were consolidated into one brigade and
he was its brigadier-general. At the beginning of the late war Gov. FAIRBANKS
summoned him, with Generals BAXTER and DAVIS, to St. Johnsbury, for consultation.
The Governor offered Gen. JACKMAN any position in his power to grant if
he wished to go to the front, but wished him to remain and prepare others
for duty. In this field he was untiring. He prepared and got the old militia
in readiness, organized new regiments and sent out cadets to drill new
companies in all parts of the state, and gave clear, precise, and thorough
instruction to officers. Honor is therefore due the General for the good
results for the state and Union.
James HOPKINS, from Scotland, was an early settler in Williamstown,
where he reared a large family and lived to an advanced age. His grandson,
Marshall HOPKINS, was born in Williamstown, in March, 1816. In 1840 he
married Prudence JONES, and three or four years afterward settled in Northfield.
Their children were Edwin B. (deceased); John G., a farmer in Northfield;
and Francis H., a manufacturer of granite in Barre.
Michael CRESSY, from Chesterfield, N. H., moved to Berlin, in February,
1828, and settled on West hill. He reared six children, and died at the
age of sixty-nine years.
Andrew J. MORTON was born in Ellsworth, N. H. He came to Northfield
in 1858, where he has since resided. He married Sarah E. AVERY, and four
of their six children are row living.
Jacob WARDNER, born July 20, 1752, and his wife, Olive, born August
9, 1759, of Alstead, N. H., settled first in East Roxbury. He died December
10, 1822. Mr. and Mrs. WARDNER were parents of thirteen children. His son
Joseph, born August 25, 1798, was a farmer in Brookfield, married Lovinia
SMITH, and reared four sons and five daughters. Amos WARDNER, son of Jacob,
born October 30, 1791, married Elizabeth BELCHER. He and his brothers Joel
and Joseph came from Randolph, Mass., and early settled in East Roxbury.
His children were Amos and G. Washington. Amos, Jr., married Mary E. PIKE,
and they are the parents of Mrs. T. B .R. HILDRETH. G. Washington married
Mary C., daughter of Rev. Joel WINCH, and settled in Northfield about 1847.
In that year he was accidentally killed in a grist-mill, located where
G. R. ANDREWs's mill now stands. His children are Sarah B. (Mrs. BINGHAM),
Ursula (Mrs. L. W. CHASE), and Mary A.
Leonard PEARSONS was born in Windsor, Vt., in 1819, and came to
Northfield in 1842. He is a shoemaker and stone mason. He enlisted in Co.
I, 11th Vt. Regt., in July, 1862, and served until he was discharged for
disability. In 1844 he married Fanny A., daughter of Thomas HOUGHTON, who
came from Putney, Vt., to Northfield, in 1821. Their children are Dennis,
Ellen (Mrs. John NICHOLS), Betsey Ann, Hattie (Mrs. Loring BROWN), Ella
F. (Mrs. S. H. STONE), and Marion F., and seven deceased.
Charles E. QUIMBY was born in Chelsea, Vt., in September, 1848.
He engaged in the service of the Central Vermont railroad at the age of
nineteen years, and was promoted to the position of conductor when only
twenty, and has held that responsible place the last nineteen years. December
30, 1869, he united in marriage with Ida, daughter of D. F. ANDREWS, and
they have a family of three sons and one daughter.
Theophilus G. CASS was born in Epsom, N. H., in 1804. His father,
Theophilus G. CASS, Sr., was a soldier in the Revolutionary war, and served
through that prolonged and sanguinary struggle for our independence. The
subject of this sketch early engaged in the occupation of stone mason,
which he has followed through a long and active life. He built the stone
work of that portion of the Lowell railroad between Lowell and Billerica,
Mass., the first railroad in New England. In 1836 he removed to Barre,
Vt. Nine years later he removed to Northfield, and at once engaged in business.
He has constructed the stone work for over a hundred buildings, mills,
and dwellings in Northfield, all the stone work upon the Montpelier &
Wells River railroad, and superintended the stone work upon the Niagara
& Hamilton railroad in Canada. He has had numerous other large contracts.
The last sixteen years he has resided in Gouldsville. He married Lavinia
WEBSTER, of Kingston, N. H. Their children are Ellen (Mrs. Frank THAYER),
Abbie (Mrs. Calvin SMILEY), George (deceased), Lewis, David, Emory (Mrs.
Horace W. THRESHER), Emma (Mrs. C. H. DUTTON), Jeannette (deceased), Walter
(deceased), Zora (Mrs. COCHRAN), and George W. LEWIS served as a soldier
in Co. K, 4th Regt. Vt. Vols., in the late war.
Hon. Edwin K. JONES, son of Daniel and Rhoda (PRATT) JONES, was
born in Randolph, Vt., in 1828, and raised in Warren. At the age of twenty
he located at Northfield village and engaged in carpentry. In 186o he removed
to the South village, to settle the estate of his brother-in-law, George
S. EDSON,. merchant. He soon engaged in mercantile business, and continued
in trade twenty-seven years. He has also been engaged in lumbering and
chair manufacturing. Mr. Jones has also been honored and entrusted by his
townsmen with most of the offices in their gift. He has served as selectman,
justice of the peace, notary public, representative in 1866, and senator
from 1882 to 1885. He has been interested in the success of the Dog River
Valley Fair association since its organization, and has served as its president
and secretary. In 1852 Mr. JONES united in marriage with Miss Harriet E.
DODGE. Their children are Fred A., Susie E., Minnie H., and Jessie A.
Perley BELKNAP was born in Randolph in 1807. He was reared a farmer,.
and was a tiller of the soil until he was thirty-five years of age, when
he came into the possession of an iron foundry, which he conducted until
1848, when, at the solicitation of Gov. Charles PAINE, he removed to Northfield
and established a foundry and machine shop, to do the repairing and building
for the Central Vermont railroad. He made the castings for nearly all the
railroad work until the death of Gov. PAINE, and employed as many as fifty
men. Mr. BELKNAP has been largely interested in erecting several of the
principal buildings in Northfield, notably the Paine block and Norwich
University. He was instrumental in. the organization of Northfield bank,
and was its second president, and held the position when it was converted
into the Northfield National bank, and was the first president of the new
organization. He also assisted in the organization of the Northfield Savings
bank. He, in company with Alvin BRALEY and T. L. SALISBURY, built a woolen
factory, which they operated five years. Mr. BELKNAP was among the first
to open a slate quarry, and has largely given his aid to develop this industry
in Northfield. He married Huldah, daughter of Dr. John EDSON, of Randolph.
Rev. Edward BOURNS, late president of Norwich University, was born
in Dublin, Ireland, October 29, 1801, and was of Scotch-Irish descent.
He graduated with the degree of A. B. from Trinity College, July 9, 1833,
and passed the theological examination in June, 1834, but did not then
take orders in the ministry. He emigrated to America in 1837. In 1838 he
went from Philadelphia to Geneva, N. Y., and received the degree of M.
A. from Geneva College, and that year was made adjunct professor of Latin
and Greek. In 1841 the same college conferred on him the degree of LL.
D., and March 12, 1842, he was ordained a priest of the Protestant Episcopal
church. In September, 1850, he was elected president of Norwich University,
which place he held for the ensuing fifteen years, and discharged the duties
professor of Latin and Greek from 1850 to near the time of his death, July
14, 1871. Dr. BOURNS was a ripe scholar, an able, classical teacher, and
a clear and forcible sermonizer.
Rev. John GREGORY was born in Norwalk, Conn., November 18, 1810.
He went to Albany; N. Y., when a lad, and served an apprenticeship of seven
years at fancy painting. He commenced to study for the ministry of the
Universalist denomination when he was twenty-one years of age, and made
his first settlement in the ministry in Salisbury, N. Y., where he was
ordained in 1832. He had several locations up to 1850, and seems to have
been a good deal of an itinerant, and remained from one to three years
in a location. About 1838 he went to Charleston, S. C., where he was editor
of the Southern Evangelist, and supplied the pulpit of that city one year.
In 1842 he was pastor of a church in Quincy, Mass., and represented that
town in the legislature. In I850 he made a permanent settlement on a farm
in Northfield, where he became a prominent stock grower, and was noted
for raising Morgan horses, French Merino sheep, Hereford, Devon, Ayrshire,
and Shorthorn Durham cattle, and for a quarter of a century occasionally
preached in the vicinity of Northfield. In 1850 he represented his town
in the legislature. In 1856 he was a senator of Washington county, and
was reelected in 1857. During the administration of President Lincoln he
received the appointment of assistant U. S. assessor, was reappointed by
Andrew Johnson, and was in service ten and one-half years. Mr. GREGORY
was an active worker in the two great reforms, human freedom and temperance.
He died at his residence on Main street, in Northfield, September 25, 1881.
Robert M. GREGG, a native of Johnson, Vt., in early life was an
engineer on the Boston & Maine railroad. He settled in Northfield in
1852, and was an engineer in the employ of the Central Vermont railroad
from that time until his death, in 1880, a period of nearly twenty-nine
consecutive years. He married Eliza J. BUXTON, of New Boston, N. H. Their
children are Minnie (Mrs. Dr. JOHNSON); Charles A., a machinist at St.
Albans; Fred W., a graduate of Dartmouth College, and a lawyer in San Bernardino,
Cal.; and Fannie, deceased.
William STONE was born in Windsor, Vt., in August, 1829. In early
life he was employed in various capacities by the Sullivan railroad, and
later by the Central Vermont. In 1862 he enlisted in the service of the
United States, in the 15th Vt. Regt., where he served his term. In September,
1863, he reenlisted in the Third Battery and served to the close of the
war. He married Lucy M. KEYES, of Windsor, and has three daughters and
one son. His residence has been in Northfield for thirty-five years.
Hon. Philander D. BRADFORD, M. D., was born in Randolph, Vt., April
11, 1811. His father, John BRADFORD, was born in Kingston, Mass., December
26, 1765, married Lucy BROOKS, January 9, 1799, settled in Alstead, N.
H., and later removed to Randolph, where he died November 19, 1814. Four
years later his mother died. Orphaned at the age of seven years, he was
cared for by the relatives of his mother in Alstead. He returned to Randolph
when he was fifteen and entered the Orange County Grammar School, where
he received his education preparatory to the study of his profession. At
the age of twenty he commenced the study of medicine in the office of his
brother, Dr. Austin BRADFORD. In 1834 he graduated at the medical school
in Woodstock, (a branch of Middlebury College,) and received the degree
of A. M. from the University of Vermont in 1850. He permanently settled
in Northfield in 1854, where he still resides, and has the reputation of
being a skillful physician. In 1853 and 1854 Dr. BRADFORD represented Randolph
in the state legislature, and was a prominent member of the Free Soil party,
and remained steadfast and true to its interests and the cause of human
freedom. In 1854 and 1855 he was elected commissioner of insane. In 1857
he was elected to the chair of professor of physiology and pathology in
the medical college at Castleton, where he continued until that institution
was suspended, in 1862. He accepted from Gov. Holbrook the commission of
surgeon of the Fifth Regiment Vermont Volunteers, in December, 1862, but
on account of illness he was compelled to resign the position in the following
March. In 1862 and 1863 he was a state senator, and also president of the
Vermont Medical society the last named year. In 1860 he was Grand Master
of the Grand Lodge of I. O. O. F. of his state, and in 1861 was the head
officer of the Grand Division of the Sons of Temperance of Vermont. He
was elected a trustee, also professor of physiology, in Norwich University
in 1867, and was a member of the Grand Lodge of the I. O. O. F. of the
United States in 1875-76. He identified himself in early life with the
cause of human rights and temperance, and is always ready to aid and encourage
every enterprise that has for its object the improvement of the human race.
Dr. BRADFORD is quite a relic hunter, and has gathered an extensive collection
of the most unique and curious “old things" found in any private cabinet
in Vermont. The Doctor is an able physician, a good and instructive conversationalist,
and a genial companion.
Hon. George NICHOLS, M. D., was born in Northfield, April 17, 1827.
His parents were James and Annis A. (DOLE) NICHOLS. His father was born
in Putney, Vt., in 1796 ; came to Northfield with his father, Eleazer,
in 1809; was an industrious and worthy man; followed the trade of carpenter
and joiner; and died in 1873. Dr. NICHOLS was educated at the common school
and Newbury Seminary, fitted for college, but never entered, having determined
to study medicine, and could not see the way clear to pursue both courses.
He commenced teaching school previous to his fifteenth birthday. In 1848
he was appointed state librarian by Governor Coolidge, and received successive
annual elections till 1853. He studied medicine with Dr. S. W. THAYER ;
graduated at the Vermont Medical College, at Woodstock, in 1851; commenced
business in his native town, combining with it that of apothecary and druggist
in 1854, which latter business he still retains, and continued in the practice
of his profession with eminent success till his return from the army, in
1863, having served as surgeon of the 13th Regt. Vt. Vols. In 1865 he was
appointed secretary of state by Governor SMITH, which office he has since
continuously held. In 1870 he was a member and president of the Constitutional
Convention; in 5872 a delegate to the National Republican convention, was
made a member of the National Republican committee, and has been a member
and secretary of the Republican state committee since that year. In 1868
he was elected director, and in 1874 president, of the Northfield National
bank; in 1872 chairman of the board of commissioners to receive subscriptions
to the capital stock of the Central Vermont Railroad Company, and has been
clerk of the same since its organization. The Doctor has been repeatedly
honored by election to the various municipal offices of trust and responsibility,
and what may be worthy of mention, with the exception of the years 1856,
'58. '59, '63, and '66, has been moderator of the annual town meeting since
William H. BOYNTON was born in Pepperell, Mass., March 25, 1832.
His father was a butcher, and Mr. BOYNTON was engaged in that business,
and buying cattle for market. He was well known as a live stock buyer throughout
the county. In 1859 he married Laura A. MEAD, and they are parents of one
son, William H., Jr., who is now in the employ of the Central Vermont railroad.
He settled in Northfield in 1859, and there passed his after life. He was
the captain of a military company of Northfield when the war broke out,
and he and his company. were among the first to offer their services to
the government, and went to the front as Co. F, of the 1st Regt. Vt. Vols.
He participated in the battle of Big Bethel, and served the term of his
Charles A.. TRACY was born in Stowe, Vt., spent his boyhood in Middlesex,
and settled in Northfield in 1850. He married Ellen J. RICE. Their children
are Kate M. (Mrs. CHASE) and Mary L. Mr. TRACY has held the offices of
lister for four years and selectman three years.
Sylvester MARTIN came from Rehoboth, Mass., and settled in Grafton,
N. H., before 1789. His son Eleazer was born in that town, in August of
that year, and spent most of his. life in Canaan in trade with his brother
Jesse. Eleazer MARTIN settled many estates, served as judge of the Probate
Court of Grafton county a long term of years, and generally held some town
office. He died in Manchester, N. H., in May, 1865. He married Polly, daughter
of John KIMBALL, of Grafton, and their children are Nancy B., Albert, Celina,
Sophia H., and Lucien E. Nancy B., in 1848, married William P. DOWNING,
then a merchant in Canaan, and removed that year to Washington, Vt. In
1871 they located in Northfield. Their children are Sarah (Mrs. GOSS),
Fred B., Florence C., and Arthur E.
Dr. William B. MAYO, born in Moretown, January 3, 1854, passed his
boyhood days on his father's farm and in attendance at the common school
and Randolph Normal School. He commenced the study of medicine with Dr.
H. C. BRIGHAM, of Montpelier, and graduated at the Homeopathic Medical
College of New York, March 8, 1877. In April ensuing he located for the
practice of his profession in Northfield, where he has gained the confidence
of the people, and has a large and lucrative practice. February 13, 1878,
he married Emma, daughter of Judge John LYNDE, of Williamstown. Dr. MAYO
has served on the board of directors of Northfield graded school six years,
and represented the town in the legislature from 1884 to 1888. His. grandfather,
Barnabas MAYO, from Acworth, N. H., settled in the forest in Moretown about
1811. His father, Barnabas, Jr., resides on the homestead.
Prof. Jesse M. HITT was born in Martin county, Indiana, in 1854.
His father was Gen. Caleb HITT, who served as brigadier-general in the
Army of the Cumberland in the late war, and died in the service. Prof.
HITT graduated at the Wesleyan University, Middletown, Conn., in 1876,
engaged in his chosen profession of teaching, and spent the next four years
in Indiana. In 1880 he was professor of sciences in the Vermont Methodist
Seminary. In the fall of that year he accepted the position of principal
of Northfield graded and High school, which he held until the spring of
1888, when he resigned to take a position in a publishing house in Boston.
John S. GREEN was born in Williamstown, Vt., in May, 1841. His father
died just before he was born, and left a wife and five other children.
Mr. GREEN's mother died when he was but six years old, and from that time
until he was fourteen this orphan boy had a home with Dr. WALDO, of Williamstown.
He then went to Chicago and engaged in canvassing. When but sixteen years
old he was employed by a wholesale firm of St. Louis as a collector and
buyer, and filled the position about three and a half years, and until
about the time of the late war between the North and South. Mr. GREEN then
enlisted in the 4th Vt. Regt., and served three years and received three
wounds. Most of the time of his service he was the head clerk of the provost-marshal's
office. After the war he was a book-keeper, in the employ of the Miles
Manufacturing Co., of New York. Since 1880 he has made a home in Northfield.
Mr. GREEN married Annie P., daughter of Richard L. MARTIN, of Williamstown.
They are parents of a daughter and two sons.
The First Congregational church of Northfield is located on Main
street and Central square in the village of Northfield. This church was
organized by Rev. Elijah LYMAN and Rev. Ammi NICHOLS, May 27, 1822, and
was composed of the following nine members: Josiah B. STRONG, Virgil WASHBURN,
Moses B. DOLE, Samuel WHITNEY, Thomas HOUGHTON, Lucy WHITNEY, Clarissa
STRONG, Rizpah WHITNEY, and Betsey HOUGHTON. Rev. Calvin Granger was their
first settled minister, in 1836. In 1836 Gov. PAINE erected a meeting-house
and invited the church to worship in it. This they occupied six years,
when the society built a meeting-house at the Center, and dedicated it
in August, 1843. In 1854 the society bought of the heirs of Gov. PAINE
the meeting-house which he had erected in 1836, and has since worshipped
there. The church, in 1887, had a membership of 135. Their church will
comfortably seat 350 people. The Sunday-school has in attendance of l00
scholars and twelve teachers, and has a library of 350 volumes.
The Methodist Episcopal church of Northfield. In 1804, eight years
after the introduction of Methodism into Vermont, Barre circuit was formed,
and Northfield was included in this circuit, and the "circuit preachers"
had regular appointments in the town. Rev. Oliver BEAL was the first regularly
appointed minister. In 1805 Rev. Elijah HEDDING, afterwards a bishop of
the church, and Rev. Dan YOUNG were appointed to the circuit. They held
their meetings in school-houses, private dwellings, barns, and groves.
In 1820 the first meeting-house (Union) was built in town, and the Methodists
occupied it their quota of time. In February, 1840, Gov. Charles PAINE
tendered to the use of the Methodist society the meeting-house owned by
the Northfield factory, which the society gratefully accepted and continued
to occupy until the death of Gov. PAINE. In 1854 this house was sold by
Gov. PAINE's heirs to the Congregationalist society, and the Methodist
society immediately set about building their present church edifice, which
they completed at a cost of $4,734 and dedicated in December, 1854. The
estimated value of the property, including buildings and grounds, at the
present time, is $10,000. The house will conveniently seat 400 people.
The Sunday-school has an average attendance of 129 scholars, with 18 teachers,
and owns a large library. The Methodists of this district have a fine camp-ground
near the village, on which there are about thirty cottages. Camp-meetings
are held on these grounds yearly.
St. John the Baptist Roman Catholic church in Northfield. Before
any permanent mission was established this place received occasional visits
from the Rev. Fathers O'CALLAGHAN, DALY, DROLET. MALONEY, and COOPMAN.
Father R. J. MALONEY purchasers the old yellow Union meeting-house in 1855,
-- the first meeting-house built in town, -- and had it removed to
a lot given to the Catholics, by Gov. PAINE, which is still used as a burying-ground.
Rev. Z. DRUON, of Montpelier, attended this parish every other Sunday from
1856 to 1864. He commenced to extensively remodel the old church in 1863,
which was finished and dedicated by Rev. F. CLAVIER in October, 1870. The
church was struck by lightning and entirely consumed in July, 1876. Father
CLAVIER, soon after he was appointed pastor of this parish, purchased a
fine residence, and on his lot near his own house he built a large chapel
for weekday service, and which served as a temporary church while the present
church was in process of construction. Rev. John GALLIGAN went to reside
in Northfield in October, 1876, and erected their present beautiful church,
which was blessed on October 24, 1877. This handsome church, the finest
in town, is constructed of wood, at a cost of $10,000, and including grounds
and all other church property is valued at $20,000. The church is located
on Vine street, has seats for about 600 persons, has a large number of
communicants, and is under the pastoral care of Rev. J. BRELIVET.
St. Mary's Parish of Northfield (Protestant Episcopal) was organized
April 10, 1851, by Rev. Dr. Josiah PERRY, who died a few months later.
The first service was conducted in a school-house, but after Dr. PERRY's
death no services were conducted until the winter of 1856-57. At this time
there were but four communicants. The summer following a change was made
from the Center to their church edifice standing on Main street, in Northfield.
This house was formally opened for worship by the Rt. Rev. John Henry HOPKINS,
D. D., LL. D., on Christmas day, 1857, and on the following day was solemnly
set apart as a church. Rev. William C. HOPKINS was the first rector, with
H. H. CAMP, senior warden; Perley BELKNAP, junior warden; George NICHOLS,
cler ; and Ozro FOSTER, treasurer. The following is a list of the rectors:
Rev. W. C. HOPKINS, 1855-64; Rev. John B. PITMAN, 1865-66; Rev. Roger S.
HOWARD, D. D., 1869-72; Rev. George C. V. EASTMAN, A. M., 1873-75; Rev.
William Lloyd HIMES, 1875-77; Rev. Franklin W. BARTLETT, 1877-82; Rev.
Frederick C. COWPER, 1883-85. The present rector, Rev. Homer WHITE, commenced
his pastorate in May, 1886. Their church edifice was constructed at the
cost of $1,100, and with grounds and all other church property is valued
at about $3,000. It will comfortably seat 200 people. The church has sixty-seven
members, and the Sunday school six teachers and forty-two pupils.
Of Washington County, Vt. 1783-1899,
and Published by Hamilton Child,
By William Adams.
Journal Company, Printers and Binders.
N. Y.; April, 1889.
by Karima Allison, 2003