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Biography of William Hall

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William Hall, a retired merchant of Plainfield, was born in Cornish, N.H., February 28, 1846, son of Israel and Elizabeth D. (Demming) Hall. He is a descendant of Willis Hall. His grandfather, Jonathan Hall, who was a native of Connecticut, was the first of the family to ascend the river for the purpose of settling. Jonathan, who was an extensive farmer, married Mercy Cady; and his children were: Israel, Sophia, Alfred, and Susan, all of whom were born in Windsor, Vt. Sophia married Sullivan Blood, of Windsor, and with her husband made the journey from Vermont to Missouri by horse and chaise. Sullivan Blood was for some years captain of steamboats of the Mississippi River. Afterward he settled in St. Louis, where he became prominent in the real estate business. The owner of many slaves at one time, he liberated them previous to the Rebellion. In politics he was a stanch Republican. He died a millionaire, and two of his four children are living. Susan always remained at home and cared for her mother, who in her later years suffered the loss of her sight. Alfred succeeded to the homestead, and always resided in Windsor. A leading business man, he was President of the Windsor Savings Bank and of the Bridge Company. He was also prominent in public affairs. He married Catharine Morgan, daughter of Captain Morgan, of Windsor, and had a family of five sons and one daughter, to whom he left a large estate.

Israel Hall, William Hall’s father, was born in 1792. When a young man he associated himself with a Mr. Marcy, and carried on a general mercantile business in Cornish, N.H., for a number of years. Selling out then to his partner, he engaged in the hotel business in Cornish, and conducted it for some time. He finally became a man of affairs, and his time was occupied in attending to his various enterprises. He settled estates and acted as trustee, and was guardian for minors and persons not competent to take care of property. At one time he was President of the Windsor Savings Bank and of the Bridge Company. He also carried on a farm. Prominent in politics, he served as a Selectman until forced to decline further nomination, represented Cornish in the legislature, was Postmaster for several years, and he acted as a Justice of the Peace and Notary Public. He attended the Episcopal church, sang in its choir, and generously contributed to its support. He was a natural musician, and for some years played a bass-viol in church. When sixty years old he purchased a seraphine for the use of the church. As the party selected to play it was unable to do so, he took a few lessons on the instrument and played it himself. Israel Hall died October 29, 1863, aged seventy-one years, leaving a large amount of property to his family. Having stood high in the community as an honest, upright business man and a faithful public servant, his descendants have every reason to look upon his record with pride. The first of his three marriages was contracted with Mary Chase, Sarah Chase, both of whom were daughters of Israel Chase, of Cornish. On the third occasion he was united to Elizabeth D. Demming, daughter of William Demming, a prosperous farmer of Cornish. The children of this marriage, all born in Cornish, were: Charles, Israel D., William, Edward, and George. Charles died in infancy. George died February 13, 1863, aged eleven years. Israel D., born May 17, 1843, who completed his studies at the Windsor High School, and then took a course at Eastman’s Business College in Concord, is now carrying on a large general store in Claremont, N.H., is connected with other enterprises, and is President of the Bridge Company in Windsor. He has represented Claremont in the legislature, has served upon the School Board for a number of years, is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and attends the Congregational church. He married M. Belle Redfield, daughter of S. Frank Redfield, of Claremont, and has one daughter, Alice Elizabeth, who is now Mrs. Scott, of that town. Edward Hall, who was born July 3, 1849, attended the Windsor High School. Prevented by his failing sight from entering upon a business career, he engaged in farming in Plainfield for some years, and is now living in retirement. He married Emily Lewin, now deceased, who was a daughter of Erastus Lewin, of Plainfield. Mrs. Israel Hall, who lived to be sixty-seven years old, died January 22, 1875.

William Hall acquired a good education in the common schools of Cornish and in the Windsor High School. He had intended to enter Dartmouth College, and was about to graduate from the high school, when, seeing an unusually promising business opportunity open to him, he decided to embrace it. When, by the destruction of the Windsor Bridge by a flood, communication between that town and Cornish was cut off, he immediately established a general store in the latter town, and had a profitable trade until the bridge was rebuilt. He then bought a store in Plainfield, to which he moved his stock, and was in company with his brother, Israel D., for four years, when Israel retired. After carrying it on successfully for nineteen years longer he retired. He has served with ability as Town Clerk and Treasurer, and has frequently been solicited to accept other town offices, but declined.

Mr. Hall married Amanda M. Gallup, of Plainfield. She was born February 28, 1846, which is also the date of her husband’s birth. Mrs. Hall is a daughter of Charles F. and Amanda M. (Kingsbury) Gallup. Her father was a leading citizen of Plainfield, and represented this town in the legislature. His wife was a daughter of Asa Kingsbury, one of the early settlers of Plainfield. The name of Kingsbury is now extinct in this town, but three grandsons of Asa Kingsbury are living, namely: Benjamin C., a mine owner in Spokane, Wash.; Byron F., a railroad station agent in Taunton, Mass.; and Charles G., the superintendent of the American Express Agency in Cincinnati, Ohio. Mr. and Mrs. Hall are the parents of three children, who were born in Plainfield, as follows: William Israel, April 14, 1868; Halliene Elizabeth, April 7, 1872; and Charles Gallup, January 9, 1880. William Israel, who completed his education at the Saxton’s River Academy in Vermont, studied art and vocal culture in Boston, and is now singing at one of the large churches in Trenton, N.J.; he married Elizabeth Sprecklen, of New Jersey. After receiving her education in a private academy, Halliene Elizabeth studied music at the New England Conservatory in Boston, and graduated June 25, 1894. United States. Charles Gallup is being educated under a private tutor.


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