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Biography of Abiathar Richards

Abiathar Richards, a retired merchant of Newport, was born here, October 8, 1825, son of Seth and Fanny Richards, of Dedham, Mass. He is descended from Edward Richards, one of the twelve immigrants bearing that surname, who, England to this country at different times in the period between 1630 and 1728, and whose descendants are to-day represented in the learned professions, the arts, commerce, and the general business of the country. Edward Richards, who arrived in 1632, was the sixth of the twelve referred to. With him, a fellow-passenger on the ship “Lion,” was his brother Nathaniel, who afterward joined the party led by the Rev. Mr. Hooker through the wilderness to the valley of the Connecticut, and was among the founders of Hartford. While a resident of Cambridge, Mass., on September 10, 1638, Edward married Susan Hunting. He was afterward one of the sixty-two original proprietors of the town of Dedham, near Boston, where many of his descendants are to be found to-day. He spent the rest of his life in Dedham, and died there in 1684. From Edward the line of descent comes through John (first), John (second), John (third), and Abiathar to the sixth generation, represented by Sylvanus, who in the beginning of this century moved with his family to Newport, N.H., and settled on a large tract of land in the western part of the township, on what is known as the “old road” to Claremont. Sylvanus Richards was for some years one of the largest land-owners and tax-payers in the town. In addition to conducting his farm he kept a wayside inn. About the...

Biography of Timothy B. Rossiter

Timothy B. Rossiter, one of the wealthiest men in Claremont, was born there, September 18, 1807, son of Sherman and Olive (Baldwin) Rossiter. Sir Edward Rossiter, the founder of the family, with his son and son’s wife, Dr. and Mrs. Bray Rossiter, embarked from Plymouth, England, on the ship “Mary and John,” March 20, 1630, and arrived at Nantasket, Mass., May 30, 1630. They began a settlement at Mattapan, and in the spring of 1636 removed to Windsor, Conn. Sir Edward Rossiter, who was chosen in London in 1629 to serve as an assistant to Governor Winthrop, died soon after his arrival in the colonies. Dr. Bray Rossiter, his son, removed in 1650 to Guilford, Conn., where he became a planter, and purchased in 1651 the Desbourough estate. Dr. Rossiter died September 30, 1672, leaving ten children. Josiah Rossiter, a son of the Doctor, born at Windsor, removed with his father to Guilford. For ten years, between the years 1700 and 1711, he was Assistant Governor in the colony of Connecticut, and for some years Recorder and Justice of the Peace. He had seventeen children. His death occurred January 31, 1716. Theophilus, his son, born February 12, 1696, married Abigail Pierson, November 18, 1725, became the father of fourteen children, and died April 9, 1770. His son, Captain William, who was born February 11, 1740, married Submit Chittenden, February 18, 1768, and died December 28, 1820, leaving eleven children. Sherman Rossiter, the father of Timothy B. Rossiter, born April 20, 1775, leaving Guilford, Conn., came up the Connecticut River to Claremont when that section was nearly all wilderness. He...

Biography of Henry Tubbs

Henry Tubbs, a successful dentist practising in Newport, was born in Peterboro, N.H., February 24, 1831, son of Joseph and Azuba (Monroe) Tubbs. The family is traced back to one William Tubbs, who came to the Plymouth Colony from London, England, in 1635. The paternal grandfather of Dr. Tubbs was Captain Joseph Tubbs, of Marlow, N.H., an early settler, a successful farmer, a good citizen, and a Captain in the old State militia. He died at the age of eighty years. Joseph Tubbs, son of Captain Tubbs, in company with Thomas Baker owned the Eagle Mills at Peterboro, N.H., where he manufactured cotton goods, ginghams, etc., from the rough cotton. Successful at first, the firm met with disasters from various causes; and the business was wound up after several years of existence. Joseph Tubbs then turned his May 22, 1859, at the age of seventy years and three months. His wife was a daughter of Dr. Joseph Monroe, of Hillsborough. She died at Hancock, N.H., January 16, 1871, at the age of seventy-five years and eight months. They were both Unitarians. They had six children, of whom three are deceased, namely: Thomas B., who died in 1894, seventy-nine years old; Elijah M. Tubbs, who died in 1881, fifty-eight years old; and Mrs. Sarah W. Merriman, who died at the age of fifty-five years. The others are: Mrs. Maria T. Blood, who resides in Hancock, N.H.; Louisa A., also a resident of Hancock; and Henry, the subject of this sketch. Henry Tubbs, the subject of this sketch, the youngest of his parents’ children, was a student for a time in...

Biography of Frank T. Vaughan

Frank T. Vaughan, one of the younger lawyers of Newport, was born May 4, 1864, in Woodstock, Vt., son of Edwin and Elizabeth L. (Tenney) Vaughan. The father, who graduated at the Albany Law School, New York, followed the legal profession, and at the time of his death was Judge of Probate. Edwin Vaughan commenced his law practice in New York City; but in 1859 he removed to Claremont, N.H., and entered into partnership with Colonel Alexander Gardner. In 1861 he enlisted in the New Hampshire Battalion of the First Rhode Island Volunteer Cavalry, and was afterward transferred to the First New Hampshire Cavalry, with the rank of Captain. He remained in the service throughout the late war, acting at one time as Provost Marshal. Claremont, and was thereafter engaged in his profession until 1869. In that year he was appointed United States Consul to Canada, a post which he efficiently filled for twelve years. Upon his return to Claremont he was made Judge of Probate, and he afterward served as Representative to the State legislature. He was largely interested in educational matters, was liberal in religion, and he was a member in good standing of the A. F. & A. M. He died December 18, 1890. He and his wife had three children. One died in infancy; and Charles Edwin died at the age of twelve years, from the injuries resulting from the kick of a horse. The mother still survives. Frank T. Vaughan spent twelve years of his early life with his father in Canada, where he received his early education. After graduating from the St. Johnsbury...

Biography of Albert S. Wait

Albert S. Wait, of Newport, the oldest lawyer in active practice in Sullivan County, was born in Chester, Windsor County, Vt., April 14, 1821, son of Daniel and Cynthia (Reed) Wait. His grandfather, John Wait, was among the early settlers of Mason, N.H. John moved to Weston, Vt., and was a sturdy farmer of that Green Mountain town and a highly respected member of the community. He died in Weston at a good old age. His children were: James, John Sumner, Daniel Amos, Lucinda, and Mrs. Davis. Daniel Wait, who followed the trade of blacksmith, was a Brigadier-general in the State militia and in his last years a Justice of the Peace. He first settled in Chester and afterward in the village of Saxton’s River, Rockingham, Vt. He was grand juror of the town of Rockingham, which is an office peculiar Vermont. A man of good judgment, he had the esteem of his fellow-townsmen. In religion he was a Universalist. He was a Democrat in politics, and one of two men in Chester village who voted for Andrew Jackson. He died in 1856 or 1857, at the age of seventy. His wife, who belonged to the Methodist Episcopal church, died when ninety-two years of age. Their children were: Martha E. Spaulding, who lives in West Springfield, Mass.; Sarah A. Spaulding, now deceased; Otis F. R., who was a prominent man of Claremont, an historian and Justice of the Peace, and died in 1895; Albert S., the subject of this sketch; and Daniel H., who died at the age of nine years. Albert S. Wait spent his boyhood in Chester...

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,...

Biographical Sketch of Moses F. Knowlton

Moses F. Knowlton, a wellknown livery man of Sunapee, N.H., was born in this town, July 24, 1845, a son of Dennis G. Knowlton. His grandfather, Samuel Knowlton, who was a lifelong resident of Sunapee, had three sons-Dennis G., Moses F., and John P. Dennis G. Knowlton had two sons-Charles A. and Moses F. Moses F. Knowlton was educated in the schools of his native town. When he first went to work for himself, he took up general farming. Subsequently he kept a general store in Sunapee for about ten years in company with his father. He then went into the hotel business in Newport, N.H., where for four years he successfully conducted the Phenix Hotel. Finally, returning to Sunapee, he engaged in the livery business, to which he has since given his attention. He keeps a thoroughly up-to-date establishment, and some of the finest steppers and most stylish turnouts anywhere to be found may be obtained of him. As the natural result of his enterprise and ability he has been very prosperous in business. Mr. Knowlton is a public-spirited 1890-91 he represented the town in the legislature. He served four terms as Selectman, and he was Town Clerk for three years. Mr. Knowlton is a member of the I. O. O. F., No. 79, at Sunapee, and also belongs to the encampment at Newport. His religious opinions are liberal, and in politics he is a Democrat. He married February 22, 1882, and has one son, John D., who was born in Newport, July 11,...

Biography of Hon. Isaac Darwin Merrill

Hon. Isaac Darwin Merrill, a well-known public man of Contoocook, is a son of Isaac and Mary (Wyman) Merrill, born October 1, 1814, in Hopkinton village, N.H. The father, a native of Hollis, Hillsborough County, born June 15, 1784, was a cooper by trade, and worked in Boston, Portland, and Troy, N.Y. When Isaac D. was about a year old, the family moved from Hopkinton to Hillsborough Bridge, where his father was employed at his trade. Later, more than sixty years ago, he settled in Contoocook, built the house where the subject of this sketch now resides, worked at his trade for some time longer, and died there, September 8, 1883, aged ninety-nine years, two months, and twenty-four days. He is well remembered in the community, among whom he is still spoken of as “Boss Merrill .” He was a man of strong frame and good health, industrious and apt to outdo his coworkers. Shortly before his death he became blind; and his last years were spent quietly at the homestead with his son, Isaac Darwin Merrill. He had three wives, whom he outlived. His first marriage was made with Mary Wyman, of Deering, who died May 31, 1843. She had eight children, six of whom, three sons and three daughters, reached maturity. The eldest, Clarinda, married Joseph L. Upton, of Contoocook, where she died after passing her eightieth year. Her husband, who was a wheelwright, built their house in Contoocook. The second child, the subject of this sketch, is the only one of this Milton Wyman, who did not marry, resided with his father, and died in 1856,...

Biography of David M. Currier, M.D.

David M. Currier, M.D., a successful physician of Newport, was born in Grafton, Grafton County, September 15, 1840, son of David and Rhoda (Morse) Currier. The grandfather, David Currier, presumably came from Salisbury, Mass., and located in Canaan, where he became the owner of a good tract of land, and died at the age of seventy-one years. He married February 2, 1797, Ruth Stevens, David, born February 8, 1803; Edward, born June 12, 1805; Aaron, born September 10, 1813; Dorothy, born January 28, 1799; and Hannah, born June 23, 1800. David, the father of Dr. Currier, was also a farmer. His active life was spent in Canaan and in Grafton. At a later date he moved to the farm, where he died July 2, 1862. His death resulted from injuries from the fall of a tree upon him while at work in the woods. He married Rhoda Morse, who was born in Enfield in 1807, and died March 31, 1894. He was a Free Will Baptist. In his last years he was a Republican. His children were: Rhoda M., who died when two years old; Amanda M. Hadley, who died sixty years of age; Ruth S. Leeds, who lives in Orange, N.H.; Mary Y. Diamond, also a resident of Orange; David M., the subject of this sketch; and William H. Currier, who is a travelling salesman, residing in South Braintree, Mass. Having received his early education in the schools of Grafton and Sanbornton Bridge (now Tilton ), N.H., David M. Currier went into the McLean Insane Asylum, formerly in Somerville, Mass., as an attendant. Here he began the study...

Biography of Charles H. Courser

Charles H. Courser, a retired business man of Henniker, was born in Boscawen, now Webster, N.H., May 19, 1827, son of John and Keziah (Shepard) Courser. The first ancestors of the family were English. His grandfather, John Courser, was a resident of Merrimack County. The father passed the greater part of his life in Boscawen, and died there at the age of ninety-two years. The mother, who was a daughter of John Shepard, a native of Derry, N.H., lived to be eighty-two. Of her children the only survivor is Charles H. Charles H. Courser passed his boyhood in attending school and assisting upon the farm. When about seventeen years old he was apprenticed to the trade of carpenter and millwright. After serving for three years he was employed as a journeyman carpenter and millwright in Boscawen. In 1853 he came to Henniker, and, securing the site of an old privilege, erected a saw and grist mill, and conducted them for fourteen years. He then sold them, and erected in Newport, N.H., another mill, which he sold before it was completed. Soon after, in Pittsfield, N.H., he bought a mill which he rebuilt and operated for nine years, but still resided in Henniker. When his former mill in this town was subsequently offered for sale, he and his son, Fitz H. Courser, bought the property, built a saw-mill upon the opposite side of the river, on the site of the present shoe factory, and were thereafter engaged in custom grinding and the manufacture of short lumber until the retirement of the father some six years ago. His original mill was...
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