In my youth I was accustomed to hear my father, and other aged people, relate the incidents of olden time, in which I was always interested, and therefore remembered. When Dr. Charles Bell’s “Facts in Relation to the History of Chester” appeared in the seventh volume of the N. H. His. Soc. Coll., it was so small in compass, containing little or nothing respecting the Long-Meadows, I thought of collecting and preserving the traditional history of that part of the town.
Upon mentioning the subject to the Hon. Samuel D. Bell, he insisted that we should have a history of the whole old town, and have it published, and wished me to undertake the work. I at first declined, but seeing that the alternative was presented of my doing it or having all the traditional part pass away and be lost, I at length consented, having the assurance of Judge Bell that he would aid me. He has done me the favor of perusing most of the work as it has been written, and has greatly aided by his advice and suggestions. Upon our comparing notes, our ideas have run nearly in the same channel. He furnished most of the materials for the notice of the grantees of Chester. I greatly regret that he did not live to see the work completed.
|Title:||History of old Chester from 1719 to 1869|
|Digitizing Sponsor:||University of New Hampshire Library|
|Contributor:||University of New Hampshire Library|
I have endeavored to ascertain and show who the early settlers were, who their ancestors were, where they came from, the identical spot where they settled, who their children were, and what became of them. To do this, it was necessary to examine thoroughly the records of deeds and probate, and also to have a map of the town as laid out into lots, which is an important part of the history of the town. These locations are thus fixed for all time.
I am aware that many will object to so much space being taken up with the genealogy. It was according to my own taste and that of Judge Bell, and may be an aid to descendants of Chester abroad, in tracing back their lineage. I have suppressed many dates, and much respecting the later generation which I had, or which was easily accessible, that many will yet wish had been printed. I have attempted to show how those pioueers lived, what they did, and the energy they exerted, &c., not in a poetical style, being sadly deficient in imagination, but by a plain statement of facts.
Where documents are copied, they are literal copies, capitals, orthography and abbreviations, and are indicated by quotation marks. I have used the orthography of names as found on the records from which I was copying. Judge Bell, when residing in Chester forty-five years ago, collected the tradition of some of the old families from Col. White and others, of which collection I have availed myself. Stephen Chase, Esq., kept a diary from 1784 to his death in 1819, from which I have derived a good deal of information. I would gratefully acknowledge the courtesies extended to me by those having charge of the various public offices I have had occasion to examine. I am greatly indebted to Capt. William F. Goodwin, late Librarian of N. H. His. Soc, for finding and copying documents in the Secretary’s office. While all of whom I have made inquiries have treated me courteously, and cheerfully given such information as they possessed, I cannot refrain from acknowledging my great obligations to Miss Margaret Shirley for the information given respecting the ancient families; she and her sister having much more traditional knowledge than any other persons consulted. I am indebted to Henry M. Eaton, Esq., for aid in putting the names of the early settlers of Candia on the map, and also to John Brown, Esq., and the Rev. Joseph Fullonton for those of Raymond. Last, though not least, I would acknowledge my obligations to the compositors and proof-reader for their skill and patience in deciphering bad copy.
I lay no claim to literary merit for the work. There are, no doubt, many errors, some merely clerical or typogiaphical; others, from uncertain and sometimes conflicting traditions; and probably I did not always understand the idea meant to be conveyed; besides, when I have made statemeuts from my own recollection I may have fallen into error.
The work has greatly exceeded my expectations when I commenced, and the labor of preparing it many times what I then anticipated; but I have never regretted the undertaking. Whatever may be its merits or demerits, or the labor bestowed upon it, I have derived a great amount of satisfaction in its compilation, and if the reader shall derive a quarter as much in reading it, he will be amply repaid for his money and time expended.
Table of Contents of History of old Chester from 1719 to 1869
- The Proprietary History from 1719 to obtaining the Charter, May 8, 1721
- The First Settlement and Laying out of the Lots
- Original Grantees and their Lots
- Settlement of the Lines
- Settling Ministers – Presbyterian Controversy – Closing the Proprietors’ Affairs
- History of the Town of Chester from 1737 to 1773
- History of the Town continued, from 1774 to 1800
- History of the Town continued, from 1800 to 1868
- History of Roads
- History of Mills
- Pauperism – Rates or Taxes – Mail and Stage Facilities
- Literary and Professional History
- Ecclesiastical, Religious and Moral History
- Military History
- How the Early Settlers Lived, or the Industrial History
- Town Officers, or Official History
- Genealogical and Biographical History
- History of Candia
- History of Raymond
Notes About History of old Chester from 1719 to 1869
- Table of Contents
Surnames from History of old Chester from 1719 to 1869
Surnames of families that appear in the biographical and genealogical section. The index has a more complete list of everyone mentioned in the manuscript.
Aiken, Ambrose, Anderson, Andrewson, Arwin, Bachelder, Badger, Bartlett, Basford, Bean, Bell, Berry, Blake, Blanchard, Blasdell, Blunt, Boid, Bradley, Bradshaw, Bradstreet, Bricket, Brown, Burley, Burpee, Buswell, Butterfield, Calef, Calfe, Campbell, Carr, Chase, Clark, Clay, Clifford, Colby, Craige, Crawford, Critchet, Crombie, Crosett, Currier, Dalton, Davis, Dearborn, Dexter, Dickey, Dinsmore, Dolby, Dudley, Dunlap, Dustin, Eaton, Elliot, Emerson, Emery, Field, Fitts, Flagg, Folsom, Forsaith, Foss, Fowler, French, Fullonton, Fulton, Gage, Gambel, Gault, Gilchrist, Gilcreas, Glen, Glidden, Glinn, Glyn, Goodhue, Gordon, Graham, Greenough, Griffin, Hall, Harriman, Haseltine, Head, Healey, Heath, Hills, Hodgkins, Hoit, Ingalls, Jack, Karr, Kelly, Kent, Ker, Kerr, Kilchrist, Kimball, Kittridge, Knowles, Lane, Leatch, Linn, Locke, Long, Lufkin, Lunt, Marden, Marshal, Martin, McClallon, McClento, McClure, McDuffee, McFarland, McFarten, McFerson, McGee, McKinley, McMaster, McMurphy, Melvin, Merril, Miller, Mills, Moore, Morrill, Morse, Moulton, Murray, Norton, Nutt, Orr, Otterson, Patten, Pearce, Pierce, Pillsbury, Poor, Powel, Prescott, Presson, Quanton, Quimby, Rand, Richardson, Robie, Rowe, Rowel, Russel, Sanborn, Sargent, Scribner, Seavey, Severance, Shackford, Shannon, Shaw, Shirley, Silsby, Silver, Sleeper, Smith, Stickney, Sweetser, Templeton, Tenney, Todd, Tolford, Towle, Townsend, True, Turner, Tyler, Underhill, Varnum, Waddel, Wason, Webster, Weeks, Wells, West, White, Whittier, Wilson, Witherspoon, Wood, and Worthen.