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Biography of Hon. John Prentiss
Posted By Dennis Partridge On In New Hampshire | No Comments
Hon. John Prentiss, the founder of the New Hampshire Sentinel, and for forty-eight years its editor, died at his residence in Court street, Friday noon, June 6, 1873, at the age of ninety-five years and three months. He came to Keene in March, 1799, at the age of twenty-one years, and established the Sentinel under many embarrassments, and with a list of subscribers numbering only seventy. His first printing office was in a low building standing where S. W. Hales house now stands, and for some time afterwards in the new building south of Dr. Edwardss tavern. Subsequently (in 182 he erected a fine block on the west side of the square, where, in connection with his son, John W., he carried on the printing, publishing and book business up to 1847, when he retired. In 1808 he built his homestead and plan the five elms in front. During his half century of active business life he he various offices of trust, serving as town clerk, town treasurer, representative in the legislature, and a member of the senate. He was also for many ) president of the New Hampshire Historical Society, and during his who life was prominently identified with religious and educational matters. Aft retiring from business in 1847, at which time he was one of the oldest e ors in the United States, he presented to each of the fourteen school district of this town a set of the Massachusetts School Library, of thirty-eight volumes, and his love for and interests in the school never abated. In 18 he traveled over Great Britain and the European continent, attending peace conventions at Frankfort-on-the-Main, as delegate from New H shire. His interesting letters from abroad were published in the Sentinel attracting much attention and interest. For sixty-seven years he was a prominent member of the Masonic fraternity, being made a Master Mason 1806, Royal Arch Mason in 1813, and a Knight Templar in 1867. influence for good which Mr. Pentiss exercised upon the community in w he so long and prominently figured cannot be over-estimated. Strictly tern ate in all things, cheerful, kind and benevolent, with a disposition to encourage and aid every individual, local and general enterprise, he was ever a lea and popular citizen. He was the fearless champion of every good ca and unqualifiedly denounced every wrong and oppression wherever they fisted. He was firm and outspoken on all questions of public policy, and the same time treated with deference the opinions of those who opposed Mr. Prentiss survived all the members of his family, except his daughters Corinna, wife of judge Hopkinson, of Lowell, deceased, and Pamela, wife Judge Henry F. French, of Concord, Mass.
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