The Town of Orford, N.H.

From the files of Stephen M. Lawson

A very informative and enjoyable small volume was published following the 1865 celebration of the centennial of the founding of Orford, NH. The main text includes arrangements and proceedings, orations, poetry, and letters. The complete Appendix of Biographical Sketches is presented here.

Composition note: The texts of the biographical sketches were scanned from the book. It is probable that OCR errors have been missed; updates will be made as errors are found. Only minor and obvious typographical errors have been changed from the original. Some formatting is changed from the original for ease of presentation. - S. Lawson.


[On reverse of title page]
Manchester, N. H.

[Undated. The latest date found in the text (on page 145, the last page) is 1866, when Schiller Hosford graduated from Dartmouth College. It is believed the book was published late 1866 or early 1867.]



It was thought that it might contribute largely to the interest and value of this publication, if brief sketches of the early families of Orford and their descendents could be added thereto. Accordingly the chairman of the Committee of Arrangements sent special requests to the different families to furnish their family records, with such additional remarks as might be deemed proper. Many did not respond; some could not, not having the necessary data at hand. After waiting a reasonable length of time, the following were received, and the only regret is that all could not, or did not comply with the wishes of the committee.


[pages103-142, plus 3 unnumbered pages]


Deacon Simeon Avery was born in Groton, Conn., in 1730.

His wife was Sarah Niles, born in 1734. Came to Orford at an early day, and settled on the place known as the Capt. Pratt place. Was one of the first inn-keepers in town, and kept the first ferry across the Connecticut. He died in 1790; his wife in 1783.

They were parents of Deacon Silas Avery and Jesse Avery, pious, worthy and much respected citizens. Jesse died in 1824; Silas a few years later.


Col. Edward M. Bissell, son of Simeon B. Bissell, was born in Fairlee, Vt., in 18OO. His mother was Martha, daughter of Gen. Israel Morey, and the first female born in Orford. He was the eldest of four brothers, Israel M., who is a merchant and resides in Philadelphia; Simeon B., a Captain in the United States Navy; George W. P., who was, for many years, in command of ships in the merchant service, and subsequently became an extensive banker in San Francisco, Cal., where he died a few years since. Edward M. came to Orford in early life, and was for many years, prominent in mercantile business. Affable and gentlemanly in deportment, he was universally esteemed. An ardent admirer of the beautiful, to his taste and judgment may be justly attributed much which adorns and beautifies the village.

He was, for a number of years, Representative of the town in the Legislature. He was twice married-first to Elizabeth M., daughter of William Howard, who died January 10th 1845; second to Catherine M., daughter of Hon. A. G. Britton. He died April 16th, 1857.


Stephen Blood was born in Charlton, Mass., May 3d, 1762; he was the sixteenth, and the youngest in the family. Bethiah Cole was born in Boxford, Mass., June 27, 1764. She, also, was the sixteenth, and youngest of the family. Mr. Blood was married to Miss Cole, January 11, 1784. They became citizens of Orford early in the summer of 1784. There were born unto them fourteen children; of whom three died in early infancy-three others before attaining to majority of years, and three others after having been married and having families. Five out of the fourteen still live-Sylvester and Samuel in Orford, Martha D., in Wisconsin, Sarah D., in California, and Daniel C., in Ohio.

The hardships endured by this family, in common with others, in the early settlement of the town, might easily be wrought into a considerable volume, wherein truth would seem stranger than fiction. They were repeatedly without bread for several days in succession, and twice they lost nearly everything by the burning of their house. But as Orford improved, their circumstances became easier, and for many years they were strangers to want. The youngest son, Daniel C., was graduated at Dartmouth College in 1828, and at Andover Theological Seminary in 1831, and has been a successful minister of the gospel at the West, for more than thirty-four years.


George Corliss was born in England, about the year 1617, and came to this country in 1639. Ile is believed to have been the first one of the name who came to this country, and the ancestor of most, if not all, of that name in New England. He married Joanna Davis, October 26, 1645. She came from that part of England called Wales. Theirs was the second marriage in the town of Haverhill, Mass.

In 1640, he settled upon a tract of land in the west part of Haverhill, which has been handed down from father to son to the present time, and is now owned and occupied by Charles Corliss, (of the seventh generation) and is known as "Poplar Lawn." He was an enterprising and industrious man, and well qualified to take a prominent part in the settlement of a new town, and at his death was possessed of a large landed property. He owned most of the land on both sides of the old "Spicket Path," as it was then called, for more than three miles

He died October 19, 1686, leaving an extensive farm, which be divided by will, among,, his children, giving his home farm, "Poplar Lawn," to his only son, John.

One of his daughters (Mrs. Mary Neff) was taken by the Indians with Mrs. Dustin, and remained with her through the whole captivity. To her he gave the farm where William Swasey now lives, one mile east of "Poplar Lawn."

John, only son of George, born March 4, 1647; married Mary Milford, December 17, 1684.

Jonathan, fourth son of John, born July 16, 1695 married Betsey Moore, March, 1717.

John Moore, twelfth child of Jonathan, had three wives; married for his first wife, Lydia Sanborn, who died in Alexandria, N. H., in 1770, leaving three sons, Ellihu, Daniel and John Moore, Jr.

John Moore and his brother, Jonathan, were the first settlers of the town of Alexandria, N. H., and at the time of his first wife's death, were the only men in the town.

They cut a log from a pine tree, and dug it out for a coffin, and buried her in the  woods. In 1852, while repairing the roads, her remains were found, and buried by the side of her husband. Her hair was in a good state of preservation, only changed from black to a flax color, though having been buried over eighty years.

John Moore was a man of uncommon physical strength, and was called in his day "a double-jointed man." When young, his hair was black, at eighty it was white; it then began to turn dark, and at the age of ninety-three, (the time of his death) it was black and glossy as a young person's.

Elihu, first son of John Moore, born March 22, 1758. In 1775, he enlisted in a company of volunteers, and marched with all speed for Boston, and met the Americans at Charlestown, as they retreated from Bunker Hill. Ile married Sarah Gordan, and first settled in Alexandria, and moved to Orford in 1792, and died September 20, 1844, aged 86. They had eleven children, all but one of whom lived to adult age. Alexander was born October 1, 1784; married Abigail Marsh, March 14, 1810. Settled in Orford as a farmer, and died October 20, 18-58, aged 74.

John Moore was born March 24, 1786; married Rosamond Dame, November 30, 1809. Settled in Orford, and died August 19, 1850, aged 64. In 1848, he married a second wife, Abigail Eaton, who now lives in Bradford, Vermont. Lydia, the third child, died February 20, 1842, aged 54.

Elihu Jr., was born February 18, 1790; married widow Harriet Clark, (a daughter of James Dayton, Esq., of Orford),, December 18, 1823, and died September 28, 1858, aged 68.

Amasa died a young ]ad. Daniel emigrated to Ohio when a young man, and subsequently settled in the town of Parkman, and married widow Glass, and died in 1855. James, also, went to Ohio, and died there while yet a young man.

Willard married Clarissa Hatch, who died in 1888. He now. resides in Newport, N. H., and is the only One Of the family now living. Hannah married Sylvester Blood of Orford. Ebenezer married Laura Drake, and died at Lisbon, N. H., December, 1832.

Sarah went to Ohio with her brother, Daniel, in 1836, and married there; but died a few years after.

Of the grandsons of Elihu, there are now living Daniel G. Corliss, Cincinnati., Ohio, John S. Corliss, Orford, N. H., sons of Alexander. Levi D. Corliss, Orford, N. H., John M. Corliss, Troy, N. Y., sons of John M. Elihu Al., Arizona Territory, John M., Fairlee, Vermont, sons of Elihu, Jr. Elihu G., Troy, Ohio, son of Daniel; George II., Newport, N. H., son of Willard; James, Thetford, Vermont, son of Ebenezer. Of the great-grandsons, two only, have arrived at manhood-Wilbur F., Cincinnati, Ohio, Charles H., New York-, sons of John M., of Troy.

Rosanna Corliss, sister to Levi D. and John M., married Daniel C. Houghton, and died some years ago. Rosamond, another sister, married the late Rev. 0. H. Tillotson, and now lives at Northfield, Vermont, with her only son. Levi D. is a farmer, residing at Orford-a man of strict integrity and great energy of character.

John M. is a successful merchant in Troy, N. Y., where he is much respected.

The Corliss family has long been an influential one in the town of Orford.


Bethuel Cross, a nephew of Daniel Cross, was born in Mansfield, Conn., February 15, 1768. At the age of three years, his parents moved from that place to Wentworth, near the border of Orford. His mother died soon after their arrival, leaving several small children. His father, feeling disheartened, was induced through the entreaties of Capt. Post and wife, of Orford, to give Bethuel to them, as their child-they having no children. At the age of four years, accompanied by a little sister a few years older, he started on his journey to his new home, on foot, there being no road-no guide, but marked trees. He has often been heard to relate, in his cheerful, affable manner, the adventures of his journey through a wilderness of twelve miles, and exclaim with a merry laugh-"boys at the present day would shrink with horror at so perilous an undertaking." He had resided in his new home but a few years, when his adopted father was called forth to fight for the liberties of his country. He was killed in the battle of Bennington, Vermont.

At the age of ten, his adopted mother was married to Governor Spooner, of Hartland, Vermont, where they went to reside. This connection proved a very great benefit to him, as his new guardian took a great interest in his education. He taught him many things which he could not obtain in a common school. At the age of 18, in compliance with the wishes of his adopted mother, he came back to Orford, to superintend her farm and business here. Naturally possessed of great energy and perseverence of character, he was capable of doing a vast amount of business. It has often been said that no man in town, from the ordinary pursuits of life, accomplished more than he did. At the acre of 19, he was chosen constable; later in life be held the office a number of years, of deputy sheriff for the county of Grafton. During the war of 1812, he was chosen custom-house officer and assessor of taxes for the county of Grafton; also, many town offices. He was an upright man, and interested in whatever pertained to the best good and prosperity of the town.

June 25, 1795, he was married to Electa Taylor, of Hartland, Vermont. She died within two years after their marriage. His second marriage was to Hannah Alexander, of  Northfield, Massachusetts. By her he had seven children, viz. : Electa Taylor, born February 22, 1796; Nancy Ann, October 16, 1798; Bethuel Taylor, November 14, 1800; Hannah, August 12, 1802; Eliphas Alexander, June 4, 1804; Henry Holiday, May 30, 1806; Fanny, May 31, 1808.


James Dayton was born at Glastenburg, Conn., in 1768. Served an apprenticeship at the clock manufacturing business at Hartford, Conn., and came to Orford in 1792, and commenced the business of carding and cloth dressing, much to the convenience of the inhabitants. The town can boast of but few superior men. With a commanding voice and person, be was a leader in public assemblies; was often called to preside at meetings of the town. His honor and integrity were unquestioned. He died August 2, 1854. He married Lucinda Morey. They had nine children; six now survive. James resides at the old homestead; Caroline married Hiram Powers, and resides at Orford, as does Henry, who married Julia Whitcomb. Maria married Ida Hodge, and lives at Bath; Eliza resides at Orford. Daniel is a physician, and lives at South Bend, Indiana.


Nathan Dewey and his wife, Mendwell, moved from Hebron, Conn., to Orford, about the year 1765. He was a blacksmith, and lived and carried on his trade opposite where is now the hotel in Orford street. He died in 1779. His sons Nathan and Abel, both lived and died in Orford. The former sustained the office of deacon in the church for many years with fidelity and usefulness; the latter was a hard-working farmer, and always resided in Orford.

Nathan, senior, was the grandfather of T. M. Dewey, formerly a resident of Orford, and now a member of the Massachusetts bar, who has earned a good reputation throughout the Now England states as a teacher of music at the present day, and who takes a high rank as a conductor of musical societies, as well as faithful interpreter of the English ballad.


Sylvester Dana was born at Ashford, Windham county, Conn., on the 4th of July, 1769. He was the great-great-grandson of Richard Dana, a French Protestant, who fled from persecution in France; went first to England, and from thence came to America about the year 1640; and settled in that part of Cambridge now included in the town of Brighton, Massachusetts. Richard Dana bad a son and a grandson, both named Jacob Dana. Jacob) Jr., had a son named Anderson, who was a lawyer by profession, and who married Susannah Huntington, of Lebanon, Connecticut. They were the parents of eight children, of whom Sylvester was the seventh. In the autumn of 1772, the Dana family removed from Ashford to the Wyoming Valley, on the Susquehanna river, which is now included in the state of Pennsylvania. Though but three years of age, Sylvester ever distinctly remembered riding on horseback behind his mother, who carried an infant in her arms while making that journey of nearly 300 miles-the last fifty of which was through a wilderness, with only marked trees for a guide. The family settled in Wilkesbarre, the principal town in that beautiful valley, and for six years were highly prospered. The Wyoming Valley was then claimed by Connecticut under an old charter of King Charles Second, and was chiefly settled by people from Connecticut, who lived many years far removed from other settlements of white men. Representation was allowed in the General Assembly of Connecticut, and in 1778, Anderson Dana was elected to represent the town of Westmoreland in that body. After au absence of eight weeks, he returned to his home, to become an actor and a victim in the tragic scene which desolated that valley. In the summer of that year, a band of British and tories, led on by Col. John Butler, and accompanied by 700 Indian auxiliaries, attacked and utterly destroyed the settlements of that valley. Most of the men were slain; all their property was either destroyed or carried away, and the women and children, who escaped massacre, fled through the wilderness to the nearest white settlements. Among the slain were Anderson Dana and his son-in-law, Stephen Whiton. Mrs. Dana, after filling a pillow-case with her husband's more valuable papers, commenced her flight on foot through the wilderness, accompanied by seven of her children, including Sylvester, who was then nine years old. They at length reached Ashford, after enduring great hardships, and the children were placed in various families where they could be of service. Sylvester labored on the farms of several persons, until he attained the age of about 17, when, with his older brother, Aziel, he returned to Wilkesbarre, and commenced cultivating their father's lands. Their scanty stock of provisions was soon exhausted, and as no supply could be obtained in that desolated valley, the family were compelled to subsist for six weeks on parsley and milk exclusively, until the growing corn was fit to roast. During the latter part of the same year, (1786) their mother, and the next spring, their brother, Anderson, joined them. The three brothers purchased considerable real estate for small amounts, and were well rewarded for their industry during the ensuing five years. Then, as Sylvester afterwards said, "the thought struck me one day if I could dispose of what property I have gained, it might be sufficient to carry me through college and preparatory studies for preaching the gospel to my fellow creatures." He accordingly disposed of his interest in his property to his brothers, returned to Connecticut, where he completed his preparatory studies, and entered Yale College in 1793, at the age of 24. He was, during the succeeding spring, visited with severe sickness, and brought very near the grave, but he recovered so as to go on with his class. During his sophomore year, he was admitted to the college church. In 1797, he graduated with his class, which wag one of eminent talent-containing among its members Rev. Lyman Beecher, Prof. James Murdock, Judge Henry Baldwin, of the United States Supreme Court, Hon. Horatio Seymour, of Vermont, and others.

After graduating, Mr. Dana immediately commenced his theological studies with the Rev. Charles Backus, of Somers, Conn., and on the 5th of June, 1798, he was licensed to preach. During that summer, he preached in various places in Connecticut, and at Wilkesbarre and Hanover, Penn., during the following year. In the winter of 1799 and 1800, he was employed by the Connecticut Missionary Society, to preach among the new settlements of western New York, and fulfilled  his mission acceptably. In the spring of 1800, he preached at Windsor, Vermont, three months. and subsequently at Haverhill and Orford, New Hampshire, from each of which places he received a unanimous call of the people to settle.

On the 20th day of May, 1801, he was ordained minister of Orford, in presence of nearly the whole population of the town; and for about, 21. years he sustained that relation, usually preaching at the East and West meetinghouses alternately. At the expiration of that period, a new Congregational Society was organized, comprising people in the western part of Orford, and in the adjacent town of Fairlee, Vt., and over it, and the church connected with it, Mr. Dana was settled February 19th, 1823, and continued until 1833, when he resigned his pastoral charge. During the four subsequent years, he preached at Thornton, N. H., and witnessed considerable accessions to the church. In August, 1837, being 68 years of age and somewhat infirm, he retired from active labors in the ministry, and removed to Concord, N. H. There, he quietly passed the evening of life, respected and beloved by all who knew him. In the autumn of 1839, he visited the Wyoming Valley, where he passed the ensuing winter in preaching occasionally.

In September, 1844, the house in which he resided at Concord, was destroyed by fire, and a large portion of his worldly effects, including more than 500 volumes of his library, were consumed, together with all his manuscript sermons, a carefully written system of theology, and a history of the Wyoming Valley. He narrowly escaped the flames with life.

In the autumn of 1846, he again visited his brother Anderson, on the old farm at Wilkesbarre, and extended his journey to Virginia; and in the following year, he attended the Commencement at Yale College-it being the fiftieth anniversary of his graduation, and there met 12 of the 24 survivors out of a class numbering 37. "The meeting was intensely interesting."

In his domestic relations, Mr. Dana was happy. He married, March 2d, 1802, Miss Hannah Kimball, of Concord, daughter of Deacon John Kimball. Mrs. D. suddenly deceased November 16th, 1846, during the absence of her husband on his last visit to Wyoming. They were the parents of nine children, five of whom died in infancy. Their daughter Anna, married Dr. Reuel Barrows, of Fryeburg, Maine. She survives her husband, who died July 18th, 1857. Their son, Charles Backus, a graduate of Dartmouth College, and of the Andover Theological Seminary, was for a long time, Rector of Christ's church, at Alexandria, Virginia-the church with which Washington himself was connected, and is now having a similiar charge at Port Gibson, Mississippi. Their youngest son, Sylvester, also a graduate of Dartmouth College, entered the profession of law at Concord, and is now Police Justice of that city. Hannah, the youngest daughter, married Rev. S. S. Tappan, then of Conway, N.H. She died April 19th, 1855, at Providence, R. I.

The mother of Mr. Dana passed the last seven years of her exemplary and useful life at his house. She died, and was buried at Orford in February, 1818, at the ripe age of 87.

Late in 1847, Mr. Dana wrote to one of his classmates as follows: "Fifty-three years have passed away since I made a public profession of religion, during which period I have generally enjoyed a comfortable state of mind; not having been carried with St. Paul to the third Heaven, nor with Cowper, deeply depressed; but have been enabled to go on my way rejoicing in God, my Savior. At times I am almost ready to adopt the language of Rev. John Newton, who said he was like a letter-written, folded, superscribed, sealed-waiting for the carrier. Surely, I shall not have occasion to wait long for the carrier." The carrier did not long delay, for during the following year his health became much impaired, and he very gradually approached his expected death, with much bodily suffering, incident to a general decay of his physical system, while at the same time, his mind retained its accustomed vigor. In May, 1849, he received all invitation to attend the ordination there of Rev. William Clark. With great pain, he arose from his bed, and wrote his last letter in reply, in which he used the following language: "Were it possible for me to be present at the contemplated ordination at this noon of the 19th century, how few, alas! should I be able to find who were present on a like occasion at its dawn. Where are now the people of Orford of mature years who attended at the East Meeting House 48 years ago this present month to witness my own ordination? Where are those who were accustomed to assemble from Sabbath to Sabbath for religious worship? Where are those who there were wont to gather around the communion table of our blessed Savior, to celebrate his dying love? Departed! nearly all departed to the world of Spirits. The tide of time will soon waft each of you to another world. Whatever, then, you would do for God and your fellow mortals, do quickly, for the grave, the house appointed for all the living, will soon be yours."

Mr. Dana calmly expired on the 9th day of June, 1849, lacking but a few days of 80 years of age. His funeral was largely attended by the clergy and people of all deDominations, and the Rev. Dr. Bouton preached an appropriate funeral discourse. His remains he in the old cemetery at Concord, while his spirit can undoubtedly testify to the truth of his last words There is rest in Heaven."


Under this name, we present portions of two letters addressed to the Chairman of the Committee, as follows

                          WENTWORTH, Nov. 90, 1865.
Mr. Howard,

DEAR SIR : My father removed from Rumney to Orford in 1788. His nearest neighbor in Orford was Mr. Wyer, who lived three miles distant. The nearest on the other side, and equally distant, was Gen. Betters, of Wentworth.

My father harnessed the cow into the sled one winter, and took my mother and went a visiting to Mr. Wyer's, and spent the evening. He used to go across to Maj. Todd's, earn a bushel of corn and bring it home on his back the same day. My mother earned a dollar a day, weaving, besides taking care of four children. My father died in 1826, aged 78 years. My mother went to Michigan in 1835. She died in less than one year after. They had a family of eight children. They are all dead but myself and two sisters, Mary and Ruth, who live in Michigan. I lived in Orford 71 years. I have had three wives. They are all dead. I have had nine children, and they are all living but two. I am 79 years old last July. Yours, &c.,


                                    CAMBRIDGEPORT, Mass., Nov. 29, 1865.
H. H. Howard, Esq.,

DEAR SIR: My father, Samuel Davis, was born in Salisbury, N. H., August 8th, 1772. He went to Orford in 1795, and died there, March 6th, 1849. ILly mother, Polly Grimes, was born in Maine, August, 1779. She went to Orford in 1795, and there died in April, 1831. My parents both lived with Capt. Jared Mann from the time they went to Orford, till they were married in 1798. I think that they were married at his house, by John Mann, Esq., but am not certain. They lived in Orford from the time of their removal there till they died.

Truly yours,


Jared It. Davis enlisted in Co. E, 5th New Hampshire Volunteers; served as Sergeant two years in that regiment; lost his left arm in the battle of Chancellorsville, May 3d, 1863. In January, 1864, he was appointed 2d Lieutenant, and was in the service three years and three months.


Eliphalet Kimball was born. at Bradford Massachusetts, in 1769, and came to Orford in 1790. Commenced the practice of medicine, and was for many years, the principal physician. At that early day the roads were poor, the population sparse. A physician's task was no holiday recreation. It required a person of energy and perseverance. Such was the subject of this sketch. Kind hearted and generous, the poor as well as the rich shared alike his professional services. He was for many years, own Clerk, and died in 1843, leaving a blessed memory.

He married Elizabeth C. Porter, or Plymouth, N. H. She died in 1839. They had nine children: Joint Porter, Eliza Livermore, Eliphalet, Hazen Spofford, Sarah Martin, Mary Woodman, Margaret Dennie, Jane Porter, Laura Wheelock.

John P. was a physician, and died at Now Orleans, La., December 2, 1843. Eliza married Dr. Alfred Pixby; he is dead. She resides at Enosburg Falls, Vt. Eliphalet is a physician, and living. Hazen S. is superintendent of extensive silver mines at Zaceticas, Mexico.

Sarah M. married W. B. Westbrook, Esq. She is a widow, and resides at Accord, N. Y. Margaret died at Galveston, Texas, January 2, 1840. Jane P. married S. W. Hale, and is now a resident of Orford. Charles P. married Helen Page, of Sharon, Vt., and resides at Northfield. Laura married Harry Allen, and died in New York, May 12, 1847.


Jeremiah Marston was born at Hampton, N. H., February 22, 1745. Came to Orford in 1769, in company with Gen. Israel Morey, and the same year assisted to survey the town into lots. His wife was Hannah Towle. They had three children-Sarah, Jeremiah and Hannah. Jeremiah is the only one living. He was born October 27, 1780, and still lives on the place of his birth, respected and beloved in his old age, by all the inhabitants of the town. Capt. Marston has ever been regarded as one of the most substantial citizens of Orford. He has occupied responsible positions, always with honor to himself and satisfaction to his fellow townsmen. He was Selectman during eleven successive years. He remains, one of the fathers not yet passed away-a worthy representative of a generation that acted their part well in life, and have transmitted a goodly heritage to their children. Blessings upon the head, of' the venerable fathers who still remain.

He was twice married; first to Betsey Gilman, December 7, 1806. She died December 20, 1807. Second to Theda, daughter of Ichabod Sawyer. They bad five children, viz.- Gilman, Charles, Arthur, Jeremiah and Harriet. Gilman is a conspicuous member of the New Hampshire Bar, Representative in Congress, and was a General ]it the late war. Charles is a farmer, and resides at Craftsbury, Vt. Jeremiah is a lawyer, residing at Hannibal, Missouri. Arthur is a farmer at the old homestead in Orford. He is a worthy citizen, and a Representative of the town in the State Legislature. Harriet married George P. Marston, and resides at Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin.

The following sketch of another branch of the Marston family, was furnished by Stephen Marston, Esq., of Hartford, Conn. Stephen Marston IS one of the noble spirits that have gone out from Orford, and is highly respected in the city of his adoption. He is an extensive lumber merchant, and very successful in business.

My father, Thomas Marston, was born in Hampton, N. H. His ancestors were among the first settlers of that old town, and were from the same family of Capt. Jeremiah Marston of your town, also those III Fairlee, bearing the same name. They were good citizens, industrious and hottest, and of an obliging disposition, more often sinned against than sinning against others, and it was hard to say no to any calls for charity made to them. illy father, when a young man. purchased a lot of land near Mount Cube, for a farm. On the opposite side of the road where the house he built now stands, a man by the name of Porter lived in a log hut. One night, Porter was awakened by a great outcry from his pig-pen, and on looking out, he saw a huge bear deliberately walking off with one of his hogs between his fore paws. He immediately sprang out of bed, and without stopping to dress, seized his ax, and gave chase to bruin, who was glad to drop his prize and make his escape. The hog was so much injured it was found necessary to kill it. Father bad a field of wheat greatly injured by some animal, and set a gun loaded, in his path, and soon had the satisfaction of killing the destroyer of his crops, which proved to be a large bear.

Such were some of the incidents common with the early settlers of our town. My father died in May, 1841, aged 68 years. My mother's maiden name was Hannah Merrell. Her father, John Merrell, held a Sergeant's cornmission under Capt. Post, of your town, who was killed at the battle of Bennington. The last time we saw him, nearly forty years since, he said in relation to that battle, that Col. Baum, the Hessian commander, had two artillery piece-, and our forces had none; but Col. Stark had four met) stationed behind some trees, as sharp-shooters, and when one of their artillery men swung his match to discharge his piece, he was shot dead, and when several had been shot that way, they abandoned their pieces, and they were afterwards taken 'loaded. Col. Baum, when he found tire fortunes of the (Jay were likely to go against him, resolved to make one more effort to win the (Jay, and for that purpose put himself at the head of his men, and ordered them to draw their sabres, and advance on our forces. He immediately received a mortal wound, and fell. My grandfather and another man stepped forward to take him prisoner; but he was for asserting his dignity, and says, "I am a nobleman born." Grandfather replies, "Had you remained in your own country, you could be a nobleman still; but you are my prisoner now." We think be said it was in that charge that Capt. Post received his mortal wound. This battle, not great in numbers engaged, was great in results, as it was the first check Burguoyne received, and contributed much towards his final surrender. One word in relation to the battle of Bennington. Probably no one event, save the surrender of Corn. wallis, contributed more to our national independence than that, for had Burguoyne seized the provisions stored there, be would have been able to hold out until he could have formed a junction with the forces under Sir Henry Clinton, and then the plans of the British Ministry would have been consummated, to divide the Eastern from the Southern and Middle states. Our recognition by the French Government followed the surrender of Burguoyne.

My mother, who is now living, was seven weeks old when her father enlisted. Grandfather Merrell was a man of no ordinary stamp. Having no advantages for education, he became his own teacher, and educated himself, and was well informed and possessed of good common sense. He was a patriot. In the war of 1812, when over 60 years of age, he volunteered, and served two years in the army, as Captain most of the time. He died in February, 1839, aged 87 years and six months. My grandmother lived to be 98 years and six months. Mother, who is now living, and quite well, is in her 89th year. She had a brother who died last year, aged 90. My brothers and sisters have all died young. Of nine children, non--, excepting myself, have attained to the age of 36 years. John Merrell, before referred to, was born in Haverhill, Mass. At the time of his enlistment under Capt. Post, he lived at Haverhill, N. H., or Newbury, Vt., we are not sure which. After the close of the Revolutionary War, he removed to Brunswick, Vt., where he died.


The following letter contains all the information of the Merrill family in the hands of the Committee, and is therefore inserted in this place.

Mrs. Stephen Merrill:  NASHUA, December 2, 1865.

Stephen Merrill, your husband's great-grandfather, lived and died in Boxford, Mass. He was a farmer, and lived to a good old age, bearing a most excellent character. His wife's given name was Keziah-a good woman and notable house-keeper.

They had five children-three sons and two daughters. Their names were Asa, Jesse, Stephen, Betsey and Mehitable. His second son, Jesse, married Phebe Pearl. They lived in Salem, N. H. He was a farmer, likewise, and had four children, Timothy, Richard, Elizabeth and Dorcas, (the present Mrs. John Gage). Timothy, the eldest son, married Marcia Gage, daughter of Josiah Gage, Esq., who was brother to Benjamin Gage, who was father to the present John Gage, making your husband's mother, Marcia, and father Gage, own cousins. Timothy Merrill and family moved to Orford, mother thinks, in 1794, and was followed in the year 1802, by his father, Jesse Merrill, with the rest of his family, and in company with John Gage.

They settled in the middle of the town, on the farm now occupied by Nathaniel Russell. Jesse Merrill moved twice after that, and died in the house occupied at the present time by Henry Perrin. He died fifty years ago, on January 1st, 1816, aged 73. Rather singularly, his birth and death occurred at the same hour, on Sunday, the first day of the week, and the first day of the first month of the year.

Timothy's family was large. He had seven sons and four daughters, Jesse, Richard. Josiah, Asa, Phebe, Martha, Mercy, Abigail, Pearl, Silas and Stephen, who is the last remaining of the family in Orford.



By way of correction, the following is added to the above letter:

"There were nine sons in Timothy Merrill's family. Jeremiah is omitted in the letter. He was twin brother to Josiah. Timothy, another of the brothers, is not mentioned. It must have been before 1794 that they moved to Orford, as all the children were born. here, the oldest in 1788.  A. T. MERRILL."


Gen. Israel Morey was born at Hebron, Conn., May 27th, 1735. Died at Orford, August 10th, 1809.

He was married to Martha Palmer, at Hebron, Conn., July 14th, 1757, who was born May 4th, 1733, and died at Fairlee, Vt., January 12th, 1810. Removed with his family to Orford, January, 1766. They made the long, tedious and toilsome journey with an ox team-the wife carrying in. her arms an infant of- six months. Settled on the firm afterwards occupied by Capt. Joseph Pratt, now owned by Tillotson and Cushman. The, house was standing until within a few years. He procured a charter for the first ferry across the Connecticut, which was located at that place. Afterwards removed to Fairlee, and was an extensive owner of timber lands. He built the mills on the Pond Brook-the first in town. Returned to Orford, and erected a dwelling, where Dow stands the house of the late Judge Wilcox.

He had seven children, Israel Morey, born at Hebron, Colin., June 10, 1760, and died at Orford, January 25, 1820. The only survivor of that branch of the family, is Geo. A. Morey, Esq., residing at Fairlee. Capt. Samuel Morey, born at Hebron, Conn., October 23, 1762, and died at Fairlee, Vt., April 17, 1843. His wife was Hannah Avery. The only daughter married Hon. Leonard Wilcox. Moulton Morey, born at Hebron, Conn., July 4, 1765; died at Fairlee, Vt. Graduated at Dartmouth College in 1789; was a lawyer, and for some years, judge of the Orange County court. Of a large family, the only one living is Samuel P. Morey Esq., a resident of Fairlee, Vt. Darius L. Morey, born at Orford, August 5, 1771. Died at Fairlee, Vt., July 25, 1825. Martha Morey, born at Orford, December 20, 1767. She was the first female child born in town. Married Simon B. Bissell, Esq. Sarah Morey, born at Orford, November 6, 1777; married Dr. Edward Tudor. Died at Middlebury, Vt. William Pitt Morey, born at Orford, November 6, 1774; died January 28, 1807.


William Howard, son of William and Martha Howard, was born at New London, Conn., May 20, 1775; he well recollected witnessing the burning of New London by the British and the surrender of Fort Griswold, where the garrison was brutally massacred by the victors, Col. Ledyard being run through the body with his own sword after handing it to the commander of the British forces. At the age of fourteen, he was apprenticed to learn the hatting business at Norwich, Colin., where he remained until 21 years of age. He came to Orford in 1799, and commenced the manufacture of hats, which he successfully prosecuted for many years. He bore the reputation of an industrious, honest, worthy citizen, with uncommon energy and perseverance, and no aspiration for public preferment. His highest ambition was to attain success in his legitimate employment, that he might contribute to the prosperity and happiness of those dependent upon him, and the general welfare.

He was selectman of the town, and for thirty years, postmaster. He died October 20, 1848, at the age of 74 years. He was twice married,--first to Betsey Pierce, July 5, 1802, who was born in Chester, N. H., in 1775, and died September 20, 1819. They had seven children, William, Henry Hampstead, Elizabeth Martha, Mary Pierce, James Pierce, John and Nancy.

William married Sarah E. Page, of Sharon, Vt. He is a merchant, and resides at Orford. Henry H., Mary P., and John are residents of Orford. Elizabeth M. married Edward M. Bissell, and died January 10, 1845. Nancy died June 5, 1847. James P. was a lawyer by profession, and died at San Francisco, Cal., January 12, 1850.

Mr. Howard's second marriage was to Abigail Stratton, of Fairlee, Vt., June 13, 1820. They had five children, Louisa, Thomas, Sarah, George and Jane. Louisa died May 1, 1843; Sarah died June 20, 1848; George died at Natchez, Miss. Thomas resides at Orford. Jane married Daniel G. Corliss, and is a resident of Cincinnati, Ohio.

The name of Howard has always commanded great respect and influence in the town.


Four of this name were among the early settlers of Orford-Ichabod, the date of whose Coming to the town I am unable to learn; Moses, who came in 1773 or 1774; Nathan, who came about the same time, and Nathaniel, who came in the spring of 1789. Of Ichabod Palmer, I have very little definite information. He was a nephew of Moses Palmer, and cousin of Nathan and Nathaniel. He married Esther Strong.

Moses Palmer was born in Eastern, Connecticut, in 1726. He first settled ill Warren, Conn., and moved to Orford after the birth of his four children. He died at Orford, in 1819, aged 98.

Nathan Palmer, a nephew of Moses, was born in Eastern, Conn. Soon after coining to Orford, he married Jemima Strong, of Lyme. About the time Nathaniel Palmer came to Orford, Nathan having sold out his property to Nathaniel, returned to Connecticut, and some ten years later, removed to Ohio.

Nathaniel Palmer, an older brother of Nathan, was born at Scotland, Windham County, Conn., in 1742. His eight children, seven sons and one daughter, were all born ill Connecticut, and came with him to Orford. He was all earnest, christian mail, and occupied a prominent position in the infant church of his adopted town. I find his name in the list of those who protested against the doctrinal errors of Rev. Mr. Forsyth. He died at Orford in 1S15, aged 73.

The descendants of Moses and Nathaniel Palmer have many of them, been found among the most thoroughly respected citizens of Orford.

Moses Palmer left one son, Moses. His grandsons Asa and Moses Palmer, remained in Orford. Moses died some years since. The last years of his life, he was the unhappy victim of incurable blindness. His only child, a daughter, is settled in Massachusetts. Asa Palmer is still living near Orfordville, the father, of a large family of worthy and enterprising sons and daughters-himself one of the few remaining "pillars of the church" at Orfordville. Several of his children are in Massachusetts. One is now engaged in the study of medicine, and one, Asa Burton, whose pointed and most excellent address to the children, Centennial day, none can have forgotten, is now on the paternal homestead, and one of the most intelligent farmers of his native town. The earlier years of his manhood he spent in teaching in Cleveland and Toledo, Ohio, a chosen profession, for which he was admirably fitted, which ill health compelled him to abandon.

Jared Palmer, the oldest son of Nathaniel, lived in Orford, to the advanced age of 87 years. For nearly half a century, he was a deacon in the Orfordville church, and at all times, all active christian, He was always at his post in religious meetings, week days as well as Sundays; and often selected as a delegate to 'ecclesiastical councils. None of his numerous descendants remain in Orford. He was the father of eleven children, six of whom are still living. His surviving son, Samuel Palmer, is a well known citizen and christian man in Cambridgeport, Mass.

Calvin Palmer, second son of Nathaniel, spent considerable part of his life in northern Now Hampshire, where he died in 18 '50. One of his sons, Alexander, has recently lived at Lisbon-an estimable citizen, superintendent of the Sabbath School, &c., &c.

Stephen Palmer, third son of Nathaniel, came to Orford with his parents, when a boy of thirteen or fourteen years, and from that time retained the same home-the farm first purchased by his father, till the last day of his life. He died in 1857, at the age of 81 years. During the greater part of his life, be was well known up and down the Connecticut river, as the efficient builder of the heavy-timbered bridges common at that time. He was the fattier of two children. His daughter died at 18. His son, William S. Palmer, having graduated at Dartmouth College in 185.3, and taught several years in different institutions in New England and Ohio, is now settled in the ministry at Wells River, Vt., an honor to his church and his profession.

Elijah Palmer, fourth son of Nathaniel, spent most of his life in Orford, dividing his time between farming and mechanical labor. His home was in Quinttown through the years of his greatest activity. When an old man, he removed to Piermont, with his youngest son. When about 80 years old, he became a member of the Congregational church, at Piermont. He died in 1864, aged 82. Only one of his sons is still living In Orford, Austin Palmer, for some years past selectman and justice of the peace, and he has recently purchased the celebrated Hazen farm in Newbury, Vt. Nathaniel Palmer, his oldest son, died when a young man, at Orford; not, however, until he had won an enviable reputation, as a man of remarkable genius and signal general intelligence.

John N. Palmer is in Wisconsin. E. West Palmer died some years since, in Boston. George Palmer is in Nashua, and Henry is a very successful farmer in Piermont. Horace Palmer, fifth son of Nathaniel, spent his life in Orford, most of it in the West Parish. He died in 1856, aged 76. He was the father of eleven children-Done of whom have resided in Orford for several years. One son, I believe, is in New York, and one in Minnesota. Two daughters are in Minnesota, and three in Massachusetts.

Clara Paliner, the only daughter of Nathaniel, was married to a Mr. Hosford, and removed to Balh. Her son, Elisha Hosford, died in Kentucky; and her daughter is now Mrs. Dr. Hosford, of Orford-the only descendant of Nathaniel Palmer who has, at present, a permanent home in the town of his adoption, withal, a most worthy representative of the family.


John Nowell was born in Salem, Mass., January 31, 1768; married Eunice Corliss, of Alexander, Mass., Sept. 1, 1791, and moved to Orford and bought a farm in the East part of the town, where be resided for nearly sixty years. In 1851, he went to Woodstock, Ill., where he died at the age of 90 years and 6 months. He lived more than 60 years a worthy christian, always cheerful and contented, ever ready to speak a word in behalf of the christian cause. His wife died about three years after, at the age of 89. Amidst the changes and sorrows of a long life, she had the cheering presence of her Savior. They had twelve children-three died in infancy. John, Eunice and Lorensa are now living. Lucy married Benjamin Finney, a farmer. Emily married James Hutchins, a merchant at Woodstock, 111. Daniel went to New York City, and married Annalanah Richie, he was the pastor of a Presbyterian Church some twenty years, when. ill health compelled him to seek other employment, and he became the proprietor and editor of the Family Circle and Parlor Annual. David marred a Miss Hall, moved to New York, as a broker and banker. Sally married William Stetson, of Orford, a farmer. Benjamin married Polly Fifield, and lived in Piermont, N. H., as a carriage maker. Eunice married Samuel Niles, of Orford, a farmer. Mrs. Niles married for her second husband, M. Ramsey, and now reside in Woodstock, Ill. Lorensa married Porter Cutting, and lives in Woodstock, 111. John, Jr., married Betsey Stetson, of Lyme, N. H., and in 1821, purchased a farm near his father's in Orford, upon which he lived till 1863, when he moved to Manchester, N. H., where they now live at an advanced age, frugal and industrious, and in the enjoyment of a good degree of health. They were the parents of six daughters, to whom they gave good advantages for education, and at the same time not neglecting to impart to them useful and practical lessons in liouse-keeping. One thing is worthy of note, that of the family gathering during the month of August, which has been observed for more than 20 years, and is still kept up, much to the pleasure of both, parents and children. Hattie A., married James Huse, lives in Enfield, N. H., manufacturer of bedsteads. Louise M., married G. W. Follansbee, lives in New York City, clerk at the Astor House. Lorensa S., married G. W. Boynton, lives in Manchester, N. H., watch maker and jeweller. Mary S., married B. Frank Niles, of Orford, a farmer, she died in Nov. 1862. Lizzie E., married Henry A. Gage, printer and publisher at Manchester, N. H. Anna R., married H. A. Horton, and lives on the old Homestead in Orford.


My father was born in Salem, Mass., in 1745, and died in Orford, December 12th, 1832. He removed from Salem to Orford in 1792. The eastern part of Orford was then but partially settled. Our nearest neighbor, if I recollect right, was Col. Simpson, who then lived near where Judge Wilcox -used to live, and where he died. There was then a one story meeting house between where the Universalist meeting house now stands, and the river. The Rev. Mr. Sawyer preached there when my father came to Orford. He died, I believe, at the age of 100 years. I believe the two eldest men then in Orford, were Deacon Strong, Mr. E. Strong's grandfather, and Deacon Tillotson, Obadiah Tillotson's grandfather.

At the time my father came to Orford, wolves and bears were quite plenty. My oldest brother, Joseph, went into the barn yard near the house one night, and found a wolf in the yard. At another time, two wolves came in the night, and carried off one of our sheep.

There was no post office in Orford when my father came there. Gen. Pickering was Post Master General under Washington's, administration. He was a near neighbor to my father, in Salem. He gave my father the Post Office for Orford; but having much other business to attend to, he let Major John Mann the office, who kept it for a number of years.

My mother was born in the year 1743, and died in Orford in 1809. I have frequently heard her relate the landing of the British troops in Salem, at the beginning of the Revolutionary War. Col. Leslie commanded the British troops. They were sent there by Gen. Gage, from Boston, with orders to take possession of the cannon known to be deposited there. The troops landed on Sunday, in the month of January. My father, I believe, was absent. The alarm was given by the beat of the drum. My mother was in the Rev. Mr. Bernard's meeting house when the alarm was given. As she turned the corner of the street to go home, she met Col. Leslie, with his troops, marching up. They halted near a house where a man lived, who was said to be a tory. The British troops were soon surrounded by two thousand people. My mother said the soldiers looked pale. The selectmen of Salem asked Col. Leslie about his business in coming on the Sabbath day under arms. He told them that he bad orders from Gen. Gage to take the cannon deposited there. They told him the cannon belonged to the state of Massachusetts, and he could not have them. In We meantime, the boats had
been rendered useless, and the bridge draw was up. Col. Leslie then marched down to the bridge, in order to Cross and take. the cannon. When he got on the bridge, and found he could not cross, he rode back in a rage, and said if they did not let down the draw, he would fire on the multitude that followed him down to the bridge. The bead men of the town told him if he did fire on the people, not one of his men should go off the bridge alive. He then rode back and consulted his officers, and then came back and said if be did not obey the command of Gen. Gage, his head must come off; he also said if they would let down the bridge, and let him pass so inany rods from it, he would give his word and honor that he would turn back, and not meddle with the cannon, and would leave the town immediately. The draw bridge was then let down. He marched to the place, and wheeling around, took off his bat-bid the people good-bye, and left for Boston.

My father made his first voyage on the ocean when he was fourteen years old. He continued in this employment about thirty years. He commanded a merchant vessel a number of years. After the Revolutionary War began, he was taken prisoner, by a British man-of-war. While a prisoner, the vessel in which he was confined, had a running fight with a French man-of-war. The English Captain set him and the officers on Martha's Vineyard, near Boston, allowing him only what he could put into a chest. The rest of the crew were sent to Halifax. He afterwards took the command of a ship of war, called the Grand Turk, carrying twenty guns, with a crew of 100 men. The vessel was owned and fitted out by Capt. E. H. Derby, of Salem. He sailed in this vessel three years. He visited Biboa, in Spain, and was in the English Channel, but never landed in England. In the time of the Revolutionary War, a large English Frigate kept cruising near Massachusetts Bay, and had taken many American vessels - sending their crews to

Halifax. Before my father left Salem to go to sea, he beard that this man-of-war was cruising in Massachusetts Bay; but as his ship was a fast sailing one, he was confident he could outsail. her, and escape, as he thought it would be hopeless to fight with so large a vessel of war. As be sailed out on a cruise, he came in sight of this large English Frigate that had taken so many American vessels. When my father came within bailing distance, the Captain of the English Frigate called out through his speaking trumpet: "You Yankee rascal, strike your flag, or I will blow you into the air." A favorable wind at that moment brought the Grand Turk, with her ten guns on a side, close to the Frigate. My father gave the word to be ready to fire. The Captain of the Frigate called out and said: "For God's sake, don't fire-if you do, you will sink us immediately." He then hauled down his flag, and then my father, followed by the marines, sprang on board of the Frigate. The Captain met him, and handed his sword to him. In the evening, the Grand Turk, with her prize, returned to Salem.

One dark night, while sailing on a cruise, be came in sight of a man-of-war. He could judge of her size only by the lights she carried. The men on board his vessel were loth to engage her. My father thought he would see what she would do. He ordered the gun to fire to the right, then to the left of the vessel, and then to fire as near as he could, right into the center of the vessel. The light of the man-of-war then went up, as a signal to fire; but they did not fire, and hauled down their flag. When they came to see the size of my father's vessel, they exclaimed-" We are kidnapped." The prize was then brought safe into Salem.

Three of my father's family died in infancy. My oldest brother died in Orford. Jonathan died in Providence, R.I., in 1847. Henry died in 1827, and Margaret in 1859.


Samuel Phelps was born at Hebron, Conn., July 6th, 1.742, and died May 2d, 1815. Married to Lydia Morey, of Lebanon, Conn., May, 1764. She died January 23d, 1832. They lived together in the marriage relation, more than fifty years. Came to Orford in April 1771. They had thirteen children-Samuel, born December 2d, 1776; was three times married, first to Patience Cook; second to Fanny Stevens, third to Anna Bartholomew. They had eight children, one died in infancy. Three are now living. Anna married Oliver Mitchell, and resides in Orford. Abner, a lawyer, resident of San Francisco, Cal., and Timothy B., who resides in Lyme.

Benona, born March 31st, 1768; died February 1st, 1770. Benona, born June 21st, 1775; died July 22d, 1775. Joel, married Saphronia Dodge; died September 1st, 1822. Nathaniel, born September 18th, 1780; died 27th of the same month. Nathaniel, born July 4th, 1782, and died a few years since. George Morey, born January 2d, 1788, and died a few years since, at Hill, N. H. He was a lawyer, and was twice married, first to Lydia Thurston, and second to Sarah W. Fitch. He had six children by his first wife, and one by the second.

Orenda, born April 10th, 1765. Married Samuel Bliss, and died November 27th, 1821. They had ten children.

Bridget, born October 26th 1769; died August 13th, 1842. She married Joseph Archer. They had ten children - five of whom died in infancy.

Lydia, born August 9th 1771. Married Hazel Russ, and died October 26th, 1840. They had eight children.

Mary, born June 20th, 1773; died September 1st, 1774. Assenett married Thomas Stevens, born May 13th, 1777; died February 1st 1835. They had nine children, three of whom died in infancy.

Mary, born April 30th 1774; died a few years since. Married Joseph Dutton.


Benjamin Quint came to Orford in 1792, and settled in the easterly part of the town, called Quinttown, from whom it derived its name. He raised a large family. Some of his descendants are now residents of Orford. He was in the war of the Revolution, and served with John Paul Jones; was aboard the Bon Homme Richard in the action with the Serapis. He died many years since at an advanced age.


Nathaniel Rogers, a son of Rev. John Rogers, minister at Boxford, Mass., was born June 7, 1718; was graduated at harvard College; settled at Leominster, Mass., as a farmer; removed to Orford, N. H., in 1770, and was alive in 1784.

Nathaniel Rogers, son of the preceding, was born at Leominster, about 1750; came to Orford about 1770, and died October 11, 1820. He was a farmer, and was many years one of the selectmen of the town. He was a sergeant in the army of the American Revolution, in the company commanded by Capt. Jonathan Chandler, in the regiment commanded by Col. Jonathan Chase. He fore a high character for integrity and sound judgment. His wife was Eunice Allen. She survived him many years and died at an advanced age. He left five children, John, Hannah, James, Eunice and Charles.

John Rogers, son of the preceding, was born May 11, 1782, and married Lucy Swinerton, May 8,m 1810. He was a lawyer several years, and afterwards retired from practice, and became a farmer. He was for many years a selectman of the town, and a representative to the state legistlature. His wife died December 5, 1856, aged 77. He died December 28, 1859, also at the age of 77. He had six children, John, George, Charles, William, Louisa and Edward.

Hannah married Heman Ford, of Piermont, N. H., by whom she had thirteen children: Alden, John, James, Lucy, Hannah, Charles, Absalom, Heman, Mary, Eunice, Belinda, Almira, and a second John.

James married Joanna Dewey, by whom he had four children, Eunice, Rhoda, nathaniel and Samuel. He died about thirty years since. Nathaniel is a mason, residing in Fairlee, Vt. Samuel is a clergyman of the Dutch Reformed Church, in Michigan.

Eunice married Timothy Sargent, of Orford, and had five children, Eunice, Nathaniel, Hannah, Ellen and Timothy. Nathaniel, who is now the post master at Orford, is the only survivor. He is married.

Charles married Amelia Ramsey, and is still living at Bradford, Vt. He had seven children.

Of the children of John Rogers, named above, John was born January 10, 1811. He is a farmer, and still lives at Orford. He has also filled the offices of selectman and representative to the state legislature. He married Eunice Ford, and has two children, Alice and Charles.

George was born November 29, 1812; went to New York city when he was about 21; and falling ill of consumption, went to Mobile for his health, and died on board ship in Mobile Bay, February 4, 1837.

Charles was born February 8, 1815. He is an artist, and resides in San Francisco, California, where he married. William was born April 4, 1817. He is a lawyer, living in Boston. He married Margaret Mitchell, and after her death, Ellen Mary Gavett, and after her death, Nancy Rebecca Holmes. His children are five: Walter F., Mary Ellen, Edwin A., George E. and Ida.

Louisa was born October 17, 1821, and died of consumption, June 19, 1842.

Edward was born January 17, 1825. He served in the army of the United States, in the war of the rebellion, and was commissioned a Lieutenant of colored troops.

Of the children of Heman and Hannah Ford, named above, Alden is a farmer, and lives in Orford. He married Sally Phelps, and has had four children, Abraham, Alden, Absalom and Edward.

Eunice was married to John Rogers, Jr., as above stated.

The first Nathaniel Rogers named above, was a son of Rev. John Rogers, of Boxford. His brother, named John, was minister at Leominster, Mass. His grandfather was Jeremiah Rogers, of Salem, who died in 1729 or 1730. Jeremiah was a nephew or grand nephew of Rev. John Rogers, who was president of Harvard College in 1682. The father of the latter was Rev. Nathaniel Rogers, of Ipswich, Mass., who was son of Rev. John Rogers, of Dedham, England. The last named John Rogers died in 1639, and was said to be a grandson of John Rogers, the martyr, who was burned at Smithfield, in Queen Mary's reign, February 14, 1555.


Col. William Simpson was born at Portsmouth, N. H.  For some years was in command of a vessel in the West India trade. He came to Orford at an early day. Was quite an extensive land owner. Of cammanding and dignified bearing, he was a very prominent man in townacting for many successive years as moderator of town meetings, and filled various town offices, and was for a number of years a representative in the Legislature. Ile died at Portsmouth, at an old age.


Daniel Tillotson was born in England, April 1, 1721. He came to this country early in life; married Mindwell Hosford, and settled in Connecticut. He was a descendant from John Tillotson, an English prelate, who was born near Halifax, in 16-30. John Tillotson is well known in history as an eminent preacher and divine, a man of great ability, and whose spirit and christian views were remarkably liberal for his time. Notwithstanding he opposed the king, Charles II, in some of his declarations, and gave utterance, to doctrines not in strict accordance with the creed of the popular church, at one time "openly preaching a sermon before the queen against the absolute eternity of hell torments," still he held high positions in the church; was appointed Archbishop of Canterbury, and ever had a wide influence in the church, and upon the religious opinions of the age. He died of a paralytic stroke, in 1694.

His biographer says of him:-"Dr. Tillotson was open, sincere, benevolent and forgiving; and although in some points too compliant, and liable to the charge of inconsistency, his intentions seem to have been pure and disinterested. His sermons maintain, a place among the most popular of that class of composition in the English language, displaying great copiousness of thought and expression, and abounding with passages which strongly impress the mind."

Daniel Tillotson was a man of strong religious character, an officer in the church for many years, and was esteemed as one of the "shining lights therein." He was a man of of great strength of character and purpose, and a most estimable citizen. He was the father of a large familywhose names follow in order :-Mindwell, Deborah, Daniel, Martha, Anna, Lydia, Aseneth. and Amelia.

Mindwell married Dr. Samuel Hale; Deborah married Col. Frye Bailey; Daniel married Mary Sawyer; Martha married Theodore Dame; Anna married Samuel Cole; Lydia married John Hale; Aseneth married Timothy Sargent; Amelia married Alexander Strong.

The above were all farmers except Dr. Hale, and all settled in Orford save Col. Bailey, who lived in Newbury, Vt.

The second Daniel Tillotson was born in Hebron, Conn., in 1750. He came to Orford about the year 1768, and soon after married the daughter of Thomas Sawyer, as mentioned above. He was one of the substantial and influential men of the town, possessed of many virtues, and great force of character. The following are the names of his children, only one of whom is now living, viz:-Mary, John Morris, Daniel, Deborah, Samuel, Susannah, Mindwell, Obadiah, Hepsibah and Thomas Sawyer.

Mary married Jesse Cole; John M. married for his first wife, widow Cargill, and for his second, Eliza Sabin; Daniel married Abigail Bailey; Deborah married Increase Batchelder; Samuel married Betsey Wallace; Obadiah married Betsey Marshall; Hepsibah married Thomas Savage; Thomas S. married Abigail Stevens.

The above were mostly farmers, with the exception of John M., who was a lawyer, and resident in the upper part of the state. Susannah died in 1797; Mindwell. died in 1860.

The third Daniel Tillotson, who married Abigail Bailey, a most estimable woman, lived and died on the old homestead in Orford, where his only son now resides. He was a Man of sterling character, great business capacity, and influential in the town.

Obadiah Tillotson, the only, member of the family living, resides at Orford, with his daughter, Mrs. Corliss. He is the oldest person living in Orford, who was born in the town. Venerable in years, having outlived his generation, be is waiting the summons to join those who have gone before him. He has finished his work, and is ready to depart. Betsey Marshall, his wife, was born in Northumberland in 1784, and died in Orford in 1852. She was a woman of true piety, noble nature, and a devoted, faithful mother. She endeavored to give her children a thorough moral and religious training. A large family was placed under the care of these parents. The following are the names of the children: Susannah M., Betsey, John M., Obadiah ff., Bradley P., Benjamin AT., Sarah S., William G., George W., Daniel 0., Charles H. and Mary H.

Win. G. and Daniel 0. died in infancy. Mary ff. died at the age of four years. George W. died at the age of sixteen years. John M. married Betsey G. Sargent, and died at Orford in 1848. She lives at Nashua, and has two children, John and Mary. Obadiah H. married Rosamond D. Corliss, and died at Northfield, Vt., in June, 1863. he was a preacher of the gospel, and had been settled over several societies, to all of which he ministered with ability and success.

Betsey resides with her sister Corliss, at Orford.

Bradley P. married Laura Ripley, and is a farmer residing at Hanover.

Sarah S. married Ebenezer C. Woodbury, and resides at Orford.

Charles H. married Lauretta G. Woodbury, and resides at Orford.

Benjamin M. married Corrilla W. Butler, of St. Johnsbury, Vt. After completing his studies at Meriden, N. H., and Newbury, Vt., and teaching two or three years, be entered the ministry, and has been settled in Manchester, N. H., over a large society, more than twenty years; all but two years of his ministry, or a little more, during which time he was settled over a large society in Philadelphia. He has two sons, Edward M., and Frank B. Tillotson.

Mrs. Elizabeth M. Chadwick, daughter of John M., resides at Fairport, Monroe Co., N. Y.

Martha, of Now York, and William, Mary and James of Warren, Vt., are the children of Samuel.

Mrs. Mary Gordon, of Whitefield, Mrs. Amanda Tillotson, of Orford, and Charles 0., of Freemont, Ohio, are the children of Thomas.

D. Frye Tillotson, son of Daniel, who married Amanda, now lives at Orford, and is one of the most enterprising and successful business men in the town. His father left him a handsome property, to which he has made large additions. He is widely known as a business man, and esteemed for his activity and enterprise, and his many social qualities. He has one son.


Capt. John Brooks Wheeler removed from Grafton, Vt., to Orford, in 1806. Engaged extensively in merchantile pursuits, which he prosecuted very successfully for many years. By energy and persevrence, with uncommon financial ability, he accumulated a fortune seldom realized in a country business. He was a prominent and influential citizen-filling acceptably, many responsible offices, and represented the town in the state legislature. He died August 26, 1842. Mrs. Wheeler died soon after his re moval to Orford. His sons were graduates of Dartmouth College. John Wheeler, ail eloquent and distinguished clergyman, was some years settled at Windsor, Vt., afterwards president of Vermont University. He died at Burlington, Vt., a few years since.

David Everett Wheeler, a member of the legal profession, held in high esteem not only as ail able and successful lawyer, but for his many genial social qualities, has resided for many years in New York; and is still in active business, associated with his son, Everett P. Wheeler, a young man of rare ability and much promise. The eldest daughter married John Francis, Esq., of Royalton, Vt. He died some years since. She now resides at Burlington

The second daughter was the wife of Stedman Willard Esq., of Orford. She died May 8, 1837. The youngest, a much beloved and accomplished young lady, died February 15, 1827, at the age of 19 years.

The second Mrs. Wheeler was a model lady, with all the virtues so nicely blended, it could hardly be known which shown most conspicuous. It was often said that suffering and want never left her door unrelieved. She died at New York, May 6, 1853. A daughter, Mrs. Brodhead, the counterpart of her mother, is a resident of New York.


Jonathan Strong, one of the first settlers of Orford, was born at Bolton, Cohn., May 19, 1725. Married Mary, daughter of Ebenezer Northam, of Colchester, Colin., Julie 8, 1750. They had children :-Hannah, born July 15, 1751, Mary, born November 25, 1752, Sarah, born July 291 1755, Esther, born November 3, 1758, Alexander, born January 15, 1761, and Jonathan, born September 4, 1764. Mr. Strong moved his family 0 Orford Julie, 1772, and died September 17, 1807, in his 83d year. His wife died December 20, 1817, aged 93 years.

Alexander Strong, Esq., son of Jonathan Strong, moved to Orford with his father in 1772, and was one of the most respectable men of the town. He died in the year 1836. Married Amelia Tillotson, of Orford, who died in the year 1838. They had two children-Ebenezer N., born March 23, 1785; Emily, born May 12, 1788.

Ebenezer N. is now living on the old homestead, at the advanced age of eighty years. Has been one of the most prominent men of the town. Married Mira Bailey, June 3, 1817, who died August 22, 1861. They had four children-Ephriam B., born August 31, 1819, Alexander, born September 4, 1821, Amelia, born March 19, 1824, Lucy B., born May 23, 1827. Ephriam B. now resides with his father. Has held town offices for many years in succession, and is now one of the sheriffs of Grafton County. He married Amanda J. Page, July 15, 1845. Has three children, Mary, born December 4, 1854, Emily W., burn November 29, 1859, Charles, born July 23, 1861.

Alexander married Lucinda Stone, December 18, 1850, He is one of the thriving farmers of the town. Has two children, Edward A., born April 3, 1852, Henry, born Docember 26,1864. Amelia now resides with her father, unmarried. Lucy B. married Chester F. Ladd, of Bradford, Vt., May 24, 1849, who died January 27, 1853. Married for her second husband, Jerome B. Bailey, Esq., of Fairlee, Vt., June, 1855. Have one child, George W., born 1859. Emily Strong, daughter of Alexander, married for her first husband, Daniel Wheeler, November 3, 1809, who died November 23, 1810. Had one child, Daniel Prescott, born September 2, 1810. Married for her second husband, Asa Wheeler, who died July 20, 1860, she outliving both of her husbands, died February 28, 1861. They had three children, Alexander Strong, born August 7, 1820, Susan Emily, born June 10, 1822, John Lee, born October 22,1824. Daniel P., son of Daniel and Emily, has always been a resident of Orford, and one of her most worthy and respected sons. Was engaged twenty five years in the mercantile business. Held many town offices; represented the town five years in the legislature of the state, and is now United States collector of Internal Revenue for the third District of New Hampshire. Ile married Mary Ann Wheeler, February 6, 1833. They had two children, Dan iel, born December 8, 1836, Charles, born February 8, 1839. Daniel married Harriet Frances Curtis, of Roxbury, Mass., November 13, 1861, and is now doing an extensive wholesale business in boots, shoes and leather, Boston, Mass.

Charles graduated at Dartmouth College in 1860. Ile studied the profession of law, and is now connected in business with James B. Richardson, Esq., Boston, Mass.

Alexander Strong, son of Asa and Emily Wheeler, graduated at Dartmouth College in 1840. Married Autista Hurd, of Charlestown, Mass. They have two childrenHelen and Henry. Is now resident of Boston, Mass., and is doing an extensive law business in connection with Henry C. Hutchins, Esq.

John Lee went South many years ago. His residence is unknown.


Thomas Sawyer was born at Hebron, Conn., in 1714. With his two eldest sons, came to Orford in the spring of 1765; remained during the summer felling the forest and making preparation for the removal of his family. In the fall returned to Hebron, and remained during the winter. In June, 1766, came to Orford with his family, consisting of his wife, Hepsibah, and seven children, Jonathan, Edward, Ichabod, Abel, John, Hepsibah and Mindwell. He died September 8, 1785. His wife died March 22, 1792.

Edward married and settled in Piermont. He was the father of Hon. Joseph Sawyer. Ichabod was born at Hebron, Conn., in 1740, and died October 27, 1826. He married Anna Palmer. She died August 7, 1845, aged 88 years. They had eight children, Isaac, Theda, Bela, Jared, Anna, Aseneth, Patty and Ichabod. Theda married Capt. Jeremiah Marston. She died April, 1864. Bela died May 8, 1815. Jared married Cynthia Dewey. She died April, 1862. They had three children, Sarah Ann, Bradley and Bela. Sarah Ann married John Richardson. She died December 12, 1857. Bradley died October 7, 1839. Bola married Deborah Josslyn, and resides at Lyme. Anna married Peter Marston, of Fairlee, Vt. She died August, 1862.  They had five children, Dan'l G., Sarah Ann, William Edward, Edward William and Henry. Daniel G. is a physician, and resides at Orford. Sarah Ann is married, and lives at Grand Rapids, Michigan. Williain E. is married; resides at Troy, N. Y. He is a successful merchant. Edward W. lives at Norfolk, Va. Henry resides at Lawrence, Mass. All are married. Abel Sawyer was born at Hebron, Conn., in 1753. Married Mary Strong.  He died March 29, 184.5, aged 92 years. His wife died August, 15, 1841, aged 89 years. He was father of Benning and Jonathan S. Sawyer. John was a clergyman, and died a few years since at the age of 103 years.

Jonathan married Tabatha Palmer; was the father of Leonard and Benjamin C. Sawyer.

[Composition note: The texts of the biographical sketches were scanned from the book. It is probable that OCR errors have been missed; updates will be made as errors are found. Only minor and obvious typographical errors have been changed from the original. Some formatting is changed from the original for ease of presentation. - S. Lawson.]

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