The Westport-Freetown-Fall River Massachusetts Tripp Family

TRIPP (Fall River family). The Tripp family first at Portsmouth, R. I., among the earliest inhabitants there, soon spread into the adjoining territory both in Rhode Island and Massachusetts, and in the march of civilization advanced with it until they became one of the numerous and substantial families of our country. Hon. John Tripp, the first American ancestor of the family in question, was one of the founders and proprietors of Portsmouth, R. I., 23d of 6th month, 1638. He held various offices in the town and was representative or commissioner to the various courts in 1651, 1654, 1655 and 1661. He was assistant or of the governor’s council in 1648 and 1670, 1673, 1674 and 1675.

In the following is briefly considered a line of Tripps which descended through the settler’s son who located in Dartmouth, Mass., later generations settling in Westport, and a still later generation in Freetown and Fall River. It is with the special Westport-Freetown-Fall River family, the heads of which were Philip J. and Azariah S. Tripp, this article is to deal. These gentlemen were long substantial men and citizens of their respective communities, the former being a resident of Freetown, State senator and much respected citizen, and the latter especially prominent and useful, for years the cashier of the Metacomet National Bank from its inception, in 1853, for seventeen years a member of the school committee of Fall River, prominently identified with many of the manufacturing enterprises and at the time of his death president of the Fall River Savings Bank.

Hon. John Tripp, the Portsmouth settler, born in 1610, married Mary, daughter of Anthony Paine. They died, he’ in 1678, and she in 1687. Their children were:

  1. John
  2. Peleg
  3. Joseph
  4. Mary
  5. Elizabeth
  6. Alice
  7. Isabel
  8. Abiel
  9. James
  10. Martha

Joseph Tripp, son of Hon. John, born about 1644, became a man of prominence in the town of Dartmouth, Mass. He was made a freeman in 1668, became a member of the court of trials in 1677, served as deputy from Dartmouth in 1685, and as selectman in 1686 and 1690. He married Aug. 6, 1667, Mehetable, daughter of Thomas and Mary Fish, and died Nov. 27, 1718. Their children were:

  1. John, born July 6, 1668
  2. Thomas, March 28, 1670
  3. Jonathan, Oct. 5, 1671
  4. Peleg, Nov. 5, 1673
  5. Ebenezer, Dec. 17, 1675
  6. James, Jan. 12, 1677
  7. Alice, Feb. 1, 1679
  8. Abiel, Jan. 8, 1681
  9. Mehetable, Oct. 9, 1683
  10. Joseph, Aug. 24, 1685
  11. Jabez, Nov. 3, 1687
  12. Mary, Aug. 22, 1689; an
  13. Daniel, Nov. 3, 1691.

From this Joseph Tripp of Dartmouth and Portsmouth the descent of the brothers Philip J. and Azariah S. is through Joseph Tripp (2), Philip Smith Tripp, Edmund Tripp and Philip Tripp, and the generations in the order named and in detail follow.

Joseph Tripp (2), son of Joseph, born Aug. 24, 1685, married Oct. 12, 1709, Elizabeth Smith, who died the 14th of 12th month, 1736. He married (second) Abigail Waite, who died 9th of 9th month, 1753. He died 31st of 12th month, 1754. His children were:

  1. Abigail, born Aug. 11, 1710, who married James Cornell
  2. Ruth, born Nov. 6, 1712
  3. Michael Pierce, born May 15, 1715, who died 24th of 10th month, 1731
  4. Dinah, born Nov. 10, 1716, who married 13th of 7th month, 1758, Joseph Saul
  5. Joseph, born May 28, 1719, who married 25th of 4th month, 1740, Judith Mosher
  6. Benjamin, who married Martha Luther
  7. Philip Smith, born April 3, 1725
  8. Hannah, born Aug. 13, 1728, who married 5th of 4th month, 1758, Israel Wood (all to the first marriage)
  9. Reuben

Philip Smith Tripp, son of Joseph and Elizabeth (Smith) Tripp, born April 3, 1725, married 7th of 12th month, 1752, Sarah, daughter of Jonathan and Peace (Davis) Wood. Their children were:

  1. Edmund, born June 1, 1755
  2. Deborah, born Feb. 3, 1757, who married June 30, 1785, Peleg Chase

Edmund Tripp, son of Philip Smith and Sarah (Wood) Tripp, born June 1, 1755, married Dec. 7, 1780, Sarah Estes, born March 31, 1762, daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth (Thomas) Estes, of Portsmouth, R. I. Mr. Tripp and wife, as were his parents before him, were members of the Society of Friends. She died in Dartmouth, Mass., July 1, 1836. They lived in Westport. Their children were:

  1. Abraham, born Aug. 9, 1782, married – May 13, 1824, Margaret Potter
  2. Philip was born in May (7 or 17), 1784
  3. Joseph, born Nov. 23, 1785, married May 30, 1811, Elizabeth Davis
  4. Benjamin F., born Nov. 24, 1787, married Sept. 13, 1810, Nancy Case
  5. Elizabeth, born Nov. 21, 1789, married Aug. 21, 1813, Williams Davis
  6. Reuben, born Aug. 12, 1791, married (first) April 1, 1813, Sylvia Tripp, (second) Nov. 29, 1829, Mary Petty, and (third) in February, 1866, Mary Barker
  7. Hannah married Patrick Potter
  8. Edmund, born Sept. 19, 1797, married (first) Cynthia Case, and (second) Esther Brightman
  9. Daniel, born July 19, 1802, married Ruth Tripp
  10. Thomas E., born May 11, 1805, married Feb. 10, 1833, Edith Tripp

Philip Tripp, son of Edmund and Sarah (Estes) Tripp, born in May (7 or 17), 1784, removed from Westport to Fall River, where he was engaged as mill carpenter and contractor. He resided on and owned the south part of the site now occupied by the store of the E. S. Brown Company, on North Main street. In about 1835 he exchanged his property in Fall River with his brothers-in-law for the ancestral property of his wife in Freetown, and there he resided the rest of his life, engaged in farming. He married (first) Oct. 5, 1806, Margaret, daughter of Nathaniel and Sylvia Kirby; married (second) Oct. 17, 1821, Phila, daughter of Azariah and Sabrina (Andrews) Shove, of Dighton; she died Dec. 16, 1848, and he married (third) Joanna Baker. His children by the first marriage were:

  1. Sarah, born April 29, 1808, married in 1827, Noah Gifford, a farmer, and resided in Westport, where she died in early womanhood
  2. Rebecca, born Aug. 21, 1810, married May 27, 1830, John A. Potter, a merchant, and removed to the State of New York
  3. Elizabeth, born Nov. 21, 1813, married Nov. 5, 1833, John Mitchell, a farmer, and resided in Westport. The children born to the second marriage of Philip Tripp were:
    1. Philip J., born Oct. 28, 1822
    2. Azariah Shove, born Feb. 21, 1826
    3. Edmund Wood, born Jan. 16, 1828, who was educated at the Friends’ School, Providence, and was engaged as a school teacher when he died, Feb. 21, 1849, aged twenty-one years.

Hon. Philip Jervis Tripp, eldest son of Philip and Phila (Shove) Tripp, was born in the town of Westport, Oct. 28, 1822, and passed the early part of his boyhood in Fall River, his parents removing to Freetown when he was thirteen years of age. In that town his parents settled on a farm which for generations had been the property of his maternal ancestors, and there he passed almost all his life, always showing a deep attachment for his home. His parents being members of the Society of Friends, he was educated at the Friends’ Academy (now the Moses Brown School) at Providence. After leaving the academy he taught school for a few years in Fall River and Dartmouth, but his tastes drew him to the life of a farmer, and nothing ever allured him from the home of his love and the profession of his choice. He always adhered to the religion of his fathers, and never left the Society of Friends, retaining to the last a liking for their simple worship and unostentatious living. Mr. Tripp was well known to the community from his interest in public questions. The teachings which he received in his youth that all men are equal, without regard to race or color, led him into the Anti-slavery movement. He was always identified with the Republican party, and was earnestly interested in questions of social reform. During the administration of President Lincoln he was appointed an inspector in the Boston custom house, and held the office for nine years, when he voluntarily retired, saying that he thought he had held the office long enough. In the year 1875 he was elected to the State Sen-ate from the Third Bristol Senatorial district, and would undoubtedly have been re-elected had not the districts been changed by Act of the Legislature. As a senator he was discreet and cautious, and made an honorable record. As a neighbor Mr. Tripp was kind and obliging. He was an intelligent observer of men and events, and kept himself thoroughly informed on all public questions. His energy and thrift were distinguishing qualities, and his sterling, honest life typical of the best elements of New England character, and he was always alive to human sympathies and necessities. Mr. Tripp died at his home in Freetown June 17, 1879, and was buried in the Friends’ cemetery here. On May 2, 1853, he married in Boston, Mass., Elizabeth G. Hathaway, born Oct. 29, 1824, in Freetown, daughter of Isaac E. and Elizabeth W. (Tobey) Hathaway. Mrs. Tripp died in Fall River Dec. 3, 1910.

Azariah Shove Tripp, second son of Philip and Phila (Shove) Tripp, born Feb. 21, 1826, in Westport, was an infant when his parents removed to Fall River, and nine years of age when they removed to Freetown. He received his education in the public schools of the latter place, and in Fall River, later attending the Friends’ Academy, now the Moses Brown School, at Providence. For a short time he taught in public schools in the neighboring towns. He gained his first knowledge of the banking business under the guidance of Joseph Lindsey, in the Fall River Savings Bank, where he became teller. In 1853, when the Metacomet Bank was organized, Mr. Tripp, though still a young man, was one of the organizers and was elected cashier, and he held that same position until his death. At one time he was offered the presidency of the bank, but declined the honor. In 1840 he was elected a member of the Fall River Savings Bank corporation, a trustee in 1879, vice president in 1880, and president Jan. 10, 1888, succeeding William Lindsey. At the time of his death he was also a director of the American Linen Company, the Richard Borden Manufacturing Company, the American Print Works, Anawan, Metacomet, Sagamore and King Philip Mills, Fall River Machine Company, Fall River Steamboat Company, and the Fall River Iron Works. He was president of the Fall River Electric Light Company, and was one of the incorporators of the Fall River Gas Works Company in 1880, and a member of the board of directors. He served for many years on the school committee, 1851-1864, and 1868-1870, in all seventeen years, and at the time of his death was a member of the Sinking Fund commission.

Following the faith of his parents Mr. Tripp always remained a member of the Society of Friends, and the history, traditions and simple faith and life of the Quakers were always dear to him; as long as he lived he attended the Yearly Meeting. For a number of years before his death, however, he attended service at the First Baptist Church.

Mr. Tripp accumulated wealth, and was exact and honorable in all his dealings and of conservative judgment. Probably no other man who ever lived in this community had so large experience in purely commercial and banking matters. He was scrupulous and exact in his dealings and represented genuine old time business integrity. It has frequently been said of him that had he located in his youth in one of the great commercial centers he must have risen to national prominence as a financier. He was always fond of referring to the plain honest teachings which he received at his home and in the Quaker meeting, and to* that spirit of thrift, economy and perseverance which was there inculcated and which he felt to have been the basis of much of his success. Endowed with acute and quick perceptions, strong and logical mental powers and a resolute will, he was especially prized as a sagacious and prudent director in the concerns with which he was connected. His immense experience with banking and commerce made him a much valued commissioner, assignee or adviser in settling bankrupt estates. In all commercial dealings his judgment was especially prized by his associates. He was a member and an officer of the Commercial Club, and constant in attendance at the club rooms. He was fond of reading and was interested in the old Fall River Athenaeum, and was always a promoter of the interests of the public library.

In politics he was a lifelong Republican. Mr. Tripp died Feb. 15, 1888, and was buried in Oak Grove cemetery. At a meeting of the officers of the American Linen Company, Sagamore Manufacturing Company, Metacomet Manufacturing Company, Anawan Manufactory, Fall River and Providence Steamboat Company, Fall River Machine Company, Richard Borden Manufacturing Company and King Philip Mills, held in the Board of Trade rooms on Feb. 17, 1888, the following resolutions were adopted:

Azariah Shove Tripp died at his residence in this city on the 15th inst., in the sixty-second year of his age. By his death the community is deprived of a valuable citizen. He resided here during his entire business life, and closely identified with the interests of this municipality, which he saw grow from a small village to a large prosperous and opulent city. Mr. Tripp was a man of marked character, ability, individuality and acquirements. He was gifted with powers of intellect which were unusual, and in some respects might be called extraordinary, and had been improved by study and careful observation. He was a vigorous and independent thinker, and espoused no cause which his judgment had not commended to him by reasoning satisfactory to his own mind, and when he had reached a conclusion he was bold in his own maintenance of it. The cause of good morals and good government found in him an able advocate and a stanch defender. His influence was always thrown in favor of whatever was for the welfare of this community, and he was for many years actively engaged in promoting educational interests. He exemplified in the best sense the results of New England education and influence. With only ordinary advantages in his youth he nevertheless succeeded by his ability, energy, skill and fidelity to the interests entrusted to his care in reaching a place of well deserved prominence. To the several corporations in which he was a director, the united boards of which are here assembled, he gave freely his time and counsels; and we, his associates in the various directions, do order this memorial to be entered upon our respective records in token of our esteem for him and as showing our sense of the loss sustained in his death by the corporations with which he was connected. It is ordered that a copy of this memorial be sent to his family.

On Jan. 24, 1856, Mr. Tripp was married in Fall River to Elizabeth E. Griffin, daughter of Jonathan and Hepsibah (Hooper) Griffin. Mrs. Tripp was born in Walpole, N. H., Feb. 20, 1831, after the death of her father, and was an infant when her mother came to Fall River to reside with her brother, the late Dr. Foster H. Hooper, in whose family Mrs. Tripp was brought up and for whom she always held a daughter’s affection. Her mother married Azariah Shove. Upon finishing her education in the public schools of Fall River, Mrs. Tripp took up teaching, and taught for several years in the high school. She was gifted with a keen and accurate mind, and although a woman of strong convictions, she was broadminded and always gave fair consideration to opposite views. In the later years of her life Mrs. Tripp did not take an active part in social and educational affairs, but she maintained a deep interest in all public matters. She died Sept. 20, 1910. The children born to Mr. and Mrs. Tripp were as follows:

  1. Phila E., born Oct. 20, 1856, was married Dec. 6, 1882, to Herbert Coolidge, and resides at Watertown. Mr. Coolidge is a member of the firm of Gilmore & Coolidge, insurance agents at Boston. They have four children:
    1. Philip Tripp, born Dec. 5, 1883, graduated from Harvard in 1905, took the course at the Yale School of Forestry, is a technical expert in the employ of the United States government and head of the forestry department of Colorado College, at Colorado Springs, Colo.
    2. Delpha, born Aug. 16, 1884, graduated from Vassar in 1907 and completed her studies in Paris
    3. Elizabeth G., born Nov. 7, 1889, completed her studies abroad
    4. Roger was born Feb. 23, 1897
  2. Mary E., born Sept. 27, 1861, married Nov. 18, 1886, Oliver S. Hawes, of the firm of Oliver S. Hawes & Bro., cotton brokers at Fall River, and they have four children:
    1. Richard Kingsley, born July 21, 1888, who graduated from Yale (1910) and is now attending Harvard Law School
    2. Lincoln Tripp, born March 18, 1895
    3. Oliver Snow, Jr.
    4. Philip Tripp, twins, born July 4, 1897
  3. Philip Edmund.
  4. Elizabeth E., born March 6, 1872, married May 25, 1897, James 1ST. Buffinton, of the firm of Buffinton & Mathewson, insurance and real estate, Fall River, and they have had two children:
    1. Eliot, born June 14, 1898
    2. Azariah T., born Oct. 21, 1900

Philip Edmund Tripp, son of Azariah Shove Tripp, born March 22, 1870, graduated from Fall River high school in 1888, from Exeter in 1889, and from Harvard in 1893. He then entered Harvard Law School, and later read law in the office of Jackson, Slade & Borden, and was admitted to the bar in 1896. In January, 1897, he became a member of the firm, which became Slade, Borden & Tripp ten years later, Mr. Tripp retiring Feb. 8, 1908, when he became treasurer of The Ancona Company. On June 28, 1904, he married Anne Borden Chase, daughter of Simeon B. Chase, of Fall River, and they have two children:

  1. Borden Chase, born April 19, 1905
  2. Judith, July 12, 1907

Representative Men and Old Families of Southeastern Massachusetts: containing historical sketches of prominent and representative citizens and genealogical records of many of the old families. 3 Volumes. Beers & Chicago. 1912.

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