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Biography of Charles F. M. Stark

Charles F. M. Stark, a wellknown resident of Dunbarton, Merrimack County, was born in this town, February 18, 1848, son of John and Caroline J. (Morris) Stark. He is a great-great-grandson of General John Stark, the famous victor of Bennington. John Stark, the father, was a lawyer, who practised his profession in Galena, Ill., and in New York City. He died in Washington, D.C., at the age of forty-two years. His wife, Caroline, was the youngest daughter of Thomas Morris, and a grand-daughter of Robert Morris, signer of the Declaration of Independence and first Secretary of State of the United States. Charles F. M. Stark was a student at St. Paul’s School in Concord. After leaving school, he resided for a number of years in New York City, and for a time was interested in insurance in New York and Boston. He finally returned to the family homestead in Dunbarton, where he has since resided, it having become his property through inheritance. The house was built by his great-grandfather, Major Caleb Stark, a son of General John Stark, and who did good service to his county in the Revolutionary War. It was built after the model of an English manor house, and is a quaint and interesting piece of architecture. Every room it contains is replete with historic memories. Heirlooms and relics both of the Stark and Morris families abound on every hand. In the north-west corner room, on the second floor, is the four-posted mahogany bed, with canopy top, in which Lafayette slept while on a visit here. About half a mile away from the house is the...

Biography of Albert Stevens

Albert Stevens, a farmer of Concord, was born at Canterbury, N.H., January 24, 1833, and is a representative of the third generation of the Stevens family born in this town. His paternal grandfather, whose name, it is believed, was Simeon Stevens, was a farmer and lifelong resident of Canterbury. He attained an advanced age, and was the father of six sons and four daughters. Three of the sons-Moses, John, and Thomas -went West, and settled in Princeton, Ill., where they grew prosperous and married. John Stevens had a son who became extremely wealthy, and two of the sons of Simeon Stevens became members of Congress. Jesse Stevens, father of Albert, remained in his native town when his brothers went West, and in course of time became one of its leading citizens. Early in life he began to teach, and he followed that occupation for some years. He lived to be sixty-one years old, and at the time of his death had been Selectman of the town for many years. He married Abigail Sherborne, of Epsom; and they had seven children-Harriet, Mary A., Sylvester, Caroline, Susan T., Nancy, and Albert. Mary is the wife of Rufus Virgin, a sketch of whom appears elsewhere in this work; Sylvester lives in East Concord; Caroline, who is the widow of Stephen Clark, resides at Littleton, Mass.; Nancy, who lives in Concord, is the wife of Moody S. Farnum; Harriet and Susan are deceased. Albert Stevens, who was the youngest son of his parents, received his education in the schools of Concord. He then took up farming, and besides he was for some time...

Biography of Rev. John Vannevar

Rev. John Vannevar, born in South Malden, now Everett, Mass., on June 23, 1857, was the youngest of three children of Aaron B. and Dorothy G. Vannevar, both of whom were born in Amherst, Mass. He lived in the place of his birth until twelve years of age, when the family moved to Summer Street, Malden. He was educated in the public schools, completing the college course in the Malden High School and graduating in 1876. He then entered Tufts College, graduating with the degree of Bachelor of Divinity in 1880, and taking a post-graduate course of one year. He was ordained to the work of the Christian ministry of the Universalist church in the home church of that faith in Malden on November 23, 1880. Called to the pastorate of the Universalist society in Amesbury in the summer of 1881, he remained there two years, during which period he was married to Gertrude F. Swasey, of Malden. Because of impaired health the winter of 1883 and 1884 was spent in Florida. Soon after returning, he accepted a call to the pastorate of the First Universalist Society of Canton, Mass., where were born a son and a daughter. In the winter of 1887, because of a bronchial affection, a leave of absence was granted him; and he spent a portion of the cold season in Southern California, but was suddenly called home by the illness of Mrs. Vannevar’s mother. The month of March was passed in Lakewood, N.J., where so much benefit was received that pastoral work was immediately resumed. In the fall of 1892 he resigned the Canton...

Biography of Rufus Virgin

Rufus Virgin, a prosperous farmer and well-known citizen of Concord, was born on the Virgin homestead, where he now resides, January 7, 1818, son of Isaac and Susan (Batchelder) Virgin. He is a descendant of Ebenezer Virgin, second, one of the old proprietors of New Hampshire. The Virgin family has been closely identified with the history of Concord since the town was first settled. Jonathan Virgin, grandfather of Rufus, took up new land here, cleared it, and became the owner of a large farm. He died at about sixty years of age. His wife, in maidenhood Sarah Austin, was the mother of four sons and one daughter. Isaac Virgin was brought up to agricultural pursuits, and received his education in the district school. The school-house was a long distance from the farm; but, not discouraged by that, he was a regular attendant as well as a diligent student. When he came into possession of the farm, which he did previous to the War of 1812, he built a substantial set of buildings, which are standing to-day, but little the worse for the ravages of time. He died June 12, 1870, Susan, was born March 4, 1790, and died in 1876. She was the mother of four children-Susan C., Eliza J., Rufus, and William H. Susan C. married the Rev. Caleb Fales, a Methodist minister, and died not long after her marriage. Eliza J. became the wife of W. K. Holt, of Loudon, but is now deceased. William died at the age of seventeen. Rufus Virgin received a public-school education, and also studied at a select private school. He has...

Biography of Irving Allison Watson, M.D.

Irving Allison Watson, M.D., of Concord, born at Salisbury, this State, September 6, 1849, is a son of Porter Baldwin, born at Corinth, Vt., July 13, 1825, and Luvia E. (Ladd) Watson; grandson of Ithamar Watson, born at Weare, N.H., September 17, 1784; and great-grandson of Caleb Watson, born at Hampstead, N.H., December 6, 1760, who was a soldier in the Revolution. Having received his preliminary education in the common schools of New Hampshire and at the Newbury (Vt.) Seminary and Collegiate Institute, he commenced the study of medicine in 1868 with Dr. Cochrane, of Newbury, Vt., and continued it successively with his uncle, Dr. H. L. Watson, and Dr. A. B. Crosby, of New York. Then he attended lectures at Dartmouth Medical College and at the medical department of the University of Vermont, graduating a Doctor of Medicine from the latter institution in 1871. Afterward, in 1885, Dartmouth College conferred on him the degree of Master of Arts. Immediately after graduating in medicine, Dr. Watson commenced practice at Groveton (Northumberland), N.H., where he remained ten years. In that period he was Superintendent of Schools for some years, in 1879 and 1881 he was in the State legislature, and he was surgeon to the Grand Trunk Railway. In the legislature he was largely instrumental in securing the passage of the act creating the State Board of Health. Of this body he was appointed a member; and at its organization in September, 1881, he was elected its Secretary and executive officer. In October of that year he removed to Concord, where he has since resided, still holding the office of...

Biography of Leonard Wood Peabody, M.D.

Leonard Wood Peabody, M.D., of Henniker, one of the oldest medical practitioners in Merrimack County, was born in Newport, Sullivan County, September 13, 1817, son of Ami and Sarah (Johnson) Peabody. He is a descendant of Francis Peabody, who, born in England in 1614, came to New England on board the ship “Planter” in 1635. This ancestor, after residing in Ipswich, Mass., for a while, removed to Hampton in 1638, and in 1651 settled in Topsfield, Mass. From him the line of descent comes through Captain John Peabody, who was born in 1642, Ensign David Peabody, born in 1678, John Peabody, born in 1714, to Jedediah Peabody, born in 1743, who was the grandfather of Leonard W. Jedediah served in the Revolutionary War, and participated in the battle of Bunker Hill. In 1781 he moved his family from Boxford, Mass., to Warner, N.H., where he resided for many years. The maiden name of his wife was Alice Howlet; and their last days were spent in East Lebanon, N.H., where they died at an advanced age. Their children were: Ami, Lydia M., Mary, Moses, Susannah, Thomas, Alice, Andrew, Frederick, Betsey, and John. Of these, one, Alice, who married Eleazar Whitney, remained in Merrimack County. Ami Peabody, born in Boxford, Mass., in 1769, was twelve years old when his parents moved to New Hampshire. When a young man he settled in Newport, N.H.; and his death occurred in that town, January 27, 1845. The first of his two marriages was contracted in Henniker with Patty Rice. She had two children, namely: Lucy, who married Leonard Wood, of this town; and Martha,...

Biography of Robert W. Hoit

Robert W. Hoit, of Mast Yard, Concord, N.H., son of Robert B. and Hannah (Goodwin) Hoit, was born July 15, 1859, on the ancestral estate on Horse Hill, Penacook, where he still makes his home. His great-grandfather, Oliver Hoit, born in November, 1747, married first Rebecca Gerald, and second widow Rhoda Hoit Whittier. He had by his first wife fifteen children, thirteen of whom lived to maturity. Mrs. Rebecca G. Hoit died in 1808, aged fifty-eight years; and Mrs. Rhoda Hoit died in 1851. Oliver Hoit died September 11, 1827. Oliver Hoit settled in 1772 on Horse Hill in the northwestern part of Concord, being the first settler in that part of the town. On March 7, 1775, a parish of Concord voted to lease him the eighty-acre school lot for nine hundred years, he paying six dollars annually; but this vote was reconsidered March 4, 1777, and the Selectmen were directed to receive of him one hundred dollars in full consideration for said lot. The son Enoch, born to Oliver and Rebecca, August 16, 1783, eventually came into possession of the farm. He married a widow, Mary French Hoyt, who had five children by her former husband; namely, Freeman, Sewall, Mary French, William, and French Hoyt. The children of Enoch and Mary Hoit were as follows: Robert B., Gillman T., Oliver, Priscilla, Rosette and Jeanette (twins), Henry, Enoch, and Wyette. The twin to Oliver died young. Enoch Hoit was an industrious farmer, and added many improvements to the farm. He died July 31, 1856. His wife Mary died August 1, 1848. Their son, Robert B., the next proprietor...

Biography of Elder John G. Hook

Elder John G. Hook, of Concord, N.H., was born in Chichester, this State, February 13, 1820, the son of Jacob Hook. Elder Hook’s grandfather, Francis Hook, was born in Salisbury, Mass. He was a fisherman by occupation, and he also ran a horseback express from his native town to Newburyport. He finally bought a large tract of land in Chichester, and started all his five sons in life with a comfortable farm. Jacob Hook, father of Elder Hook, was the eldest of the family. He was educated in the Salisbury public schools, and was engaged in farming all his life. At the time of his death he was exactly ninety-two years and six months old. He married Hannah Griffin, of Northwood, N.H. Six children were born to him: Esther B.; Asa J.; Mary A.; Elvira, who died at the age of five; John G., the subject of this sketch; and William P. Elder Hook is the only survivor of this 1839 he started for the Far West. On the way he met some kinsfolk, among them an aunt and several cousins, and stayed with them in the town of Marcellus, N.Y., where he was providentially converted to the Christian religion, largely through the influence of his devoted aunt. Word reached his parents in the East that he had been murdered, and his mother was saved from dying of grief through the timely arrival of a letter from her son. After his return to Concord he attended some religious meetings conducted by Elder Joshua B. Hines, of Boston, who came here with a mammoth tent, the largest then made in...

Biography of Rev. Isaac G. Hubbard

Rev. Isaac G. Hubbard, at one time the rector of Trinity Church, Claremont, was born here, April 13, 1818, son of Isaac and Ruth (Cobb) Hubbard. His grandfather, George Hubbard, who was a Lieutenant in the Revolutionary War, came to Claremont in 1778 from Tolland, Conn. Judge J. H. Hubbard, of Windsor, a son of George, was one of the ablest lawyers in New England. He was a powerful man, and as a pleader at the bar he had few equals. Isaac Hubbard, another son, who settled in Claremont, became a successful farmer and stock-raiser. He was an influential man, served in different town offices, did much legal work, was Justice of the Peace, was considered a practical lawyer, and was prominent in the Episcopal church. He died in January, 1861, leaving a fine estate of some four hundred acres. By his first wife, a daughter of Ezra Jones, there was one child, a daughter, who married Charles F. Long, and had four children: Caroline, who died young; Charles H.; Isaac G.; and Charlotte B. The three last named are still living. His second wife, in maidenhood Ruth Cobb, daughter of Samuel Cobb, of Springfield, Vt., had four children. Amos, the eldest, now deceased, who was in the nursery business in Detroit, Mich., married Catharine, daughter of Samuel Fiske. She was half-sister of Philip Fiske, the donor of the Fiske Library in Claremont; and her mother was a sister of Paran Stevens, the famous hotel man of that place. The second child of Isaac Hubbard was Sarah M., who married the Rev. Joel Clapp, an Episcopal minister. Charles H....

Biography of Abraham Gates Jones

Abraham Gates Jones, a wellknown gentleman of Concord, N.H., formerly engaged in the printing business, but now retired from active business affairs, was born in the town of Bow, five miles south of this city, October 21, 1827, son of Philip and Sarah M. (Gates) Jones. His paternal ancestors for many years were residents of Merrimack County, while the maternal progenitors came from Massachusetts. Philip Jones, father of the subject of this sketch, was the son of Joseph Jones, and was a merchant in Hookset. He died on January 26, 1836. His wife, Sarah M. Gates, was a daughter of the Rev. Abraham Gates, a clergyman, who came to New Hampshire from Massachusetts, and after staying a short time in Claremont settled at Bow, where he bought a farm, the same on which his grandson and namesake was born. Abraham G. Jones was left fatherless at the early age of eight years. In 1839 he came to Concord, where he attended the public schools, and subsequently the academy, from which he was graduated in 1844. He soon entered the service of Isaac Hill & Sons, editors and publishers of Hill’s New Hampshire Patriot, remaining in their employ about two years. Thence onward until 1854 he was a journeyman printer in various offices. In that year he formed a partnership with P. B. Cogswell in the printing business. Four years later he sold out to Mr. Cogswell, who, in 1893, became Mayor of the city. Mr. Jones, in 1859, went into partnership with Fogg & Hadley, editors and publishers of the Independent Democrat, the association continuing for eight years. From...
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