Location: Addison County VT

Biographical Sketch of William Slade

William Slade came from Washington, Conn., to Clarendon, Rutland county, about 1780, and three or four years later removed to Cornwall and made his pitch on the land now owned and occupied by John Towle, where he continued to reside until his death in 1826, at the age of seventy-three years. Being of vigorous and energetic nature and withal a born politician, he took an active part in the management of town affairs, and was sheriff of the county from 1810 to 1811. He was a soldier of the Revolution, and was for a time on board the Jersey prison ship. He was a firm supporter of Madison during the War of 1812. His house was the birth-place of the Rev. Henry H. Hudson, the Shakespearean critic and...

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Cornwall Vermont – 1885 Town Officers

The following are the officers elected at the March meeting for 1885: Town clerk, C. H. Lane; selectmen, P. N. Cobb, E. D. Searle, A. S. Bingham; listers, C. H. James, N. B. Douglass, R. A. Foot; constable and collector, A. W. Frost; second constable, H. E. Taylor; treasurer, W. H. Bingham; overseer of the poor, R. A. Foot; superintendent of schools, T. P. D. Matthews; auditors, L. W. Peet and Frank Warner; inspector of wood and shingles, P. N. Cobb; agent to prosecute and defend suits, C. G. Lane; representative, H. F. Dean; town grand jurors, W. H. De Long, C. C. Ward, W. H....

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Biographical Sketch of James Marsh Douglass

The same year James Marsh Douglass, from Cornwall, Conn., pitched in the south part of the town on a lot afterwards occupied by Elias Douglass, and later still by Eli Stevens. He probably remained here most of the time until 1784, when he brought his family from Connecticut. He owned about five hundred acres in different lots in this vicinity, and apparently intended to have his sons settle about him. He died, however, in 1790, and the estate was divided among his...

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Biographical Sketch of Rufus Mead

Rufus Mead, brother of Ezra and Isaac, in 1786 bought of Abel Wright the farm now occupied by Mrs. W. W. Wright, and built, first at the base of the hill and afterward on the present highway. Of his sons, three, Hiram, Martin L. and Charles M., were graduated from Middlebury College, and another, Rufus, was for a number of years editor of the Middlebury...

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Biographical Sketch of Jared Ives

Jared Ives, from Cheshire, Conn., settled in 1787 on the west side of the road, north of David Pratt. Enos Ives lived nearly across the road from him. John Rockwell, jr., came to Cornwall from Ridgefield, Conn., in 1784, and settled on the farm now owned and occupied by his grandson, S. S. Rockwell. He first built on the west side of the road. He gradually acquired an extensive farm, which, after his death at the age of seventy-one years, September 5, 1825, become the property of his son, John Rockwell, who conveyed the farm to his son, the present owner, over a quarter of a century ago. John Rockwell, sr., followed his children to Cornwall, and lived on the place now occupied by W. C. Wallace. He died September 9, 1825, aged ninety-two...

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Cornwall Vermont – Post Office

A post-office was not established in Cornwall until about 1824, when Chauncey H. Stowell was appointed. In 1833 he was succeeded by Samuel Everts, who held the office twelve years. Chauncey H. Stowell was then reappointed. His successors have been Charles Merrill, Rev. G. W. Noyes, Calvin H. Lewis, Loyal L. Wright, and Samuel Everts, the present incumbent. Some time before 1860 an office was established at West Cornwall, by the appointment of Benjamin F. Haskell. His successor was Mr. Hamilton. Mrs. M. A. Hamilton succeeded on the death of her husband in June, 1860, and still retains the...

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Biographical Sketch of Hon. Joel Linsley

Early in 1775 Hon. Joel Linsley, from Woodbury, Conn., made a pitch on a tract which he occupied the remainder of his life. His first log cabin stood sixty or eighty rods east of the building now occupied by Charles Benedict, which he subsequently built. He was a surveyor and became a large land owner. At the organization of the town he was chosen town clerk, and afterwards repeatedly elected, with the exception of two years, until his death in 1818. He represented the town several years in the Legislature; was assistant judge and afterward chief judge of the County Court. His popularity was owing no less to his sociability than to his business energy and...

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Biographical Sketch of Nathan Jackson

Nathan Jackson located on the east side of the road nearly across from Jacob Ingraham, and followed his occupation of blacksmithing. He was a soldier of the Revolution, and prided himself on enjoying the personal confidence of General...

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Biographical Sketch of Dr. Nathan Foot

Dr. Nathan Foot, from Watertown, Conn., made his first pitch in the extreme east part of the town, on the verge of the swamp. The farm is not now occupied, but was afterward owned by his son Nathan, and in 1862 and later by Maria Foot and William Turner. A few years after his arrival here he built a second log house west of the highway, and later still a framed house. He died in Charlotte in 1807. Mrs. William Turner is his great-granddaughter. These surveys were all made in 1774 by Judge Gamaliel Painter, of...

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Cornwall Vermont – Early Roads

One of the earliest and most imperative necessities of the early settlers was the construction of roads and bridges. As in nearly all the towns, a greater number of roads were surveyed than were ever opened, and more were opened than have been continued; so that a thorough acquaintance with the highways as they lead at present throws little light upon their ramifications of a hundred years ago. The main north and south road from Whiting to Weybridge was laid before 1778, nearly as it now runs. A vote was passed in June, 1786, to build a road from between John Holley’s and Isaac Kellogg’s east through the swamp to Theophilus Allen’s. On account, however, of the expense and labor of constructing it the work was delayed many years. It was then prosecuted so slowly that not until 1825, and under the pressure of the necessity of Salisbury, Ripton and East Middlebury for direct communication with the lake, was the highway opened for travel. Some time before 1815 the Middlebury Turnpike Company, so called, which proposed to extend the Hubbardton Turnpike to Middlebury, offered Cornwall the free use of the road provided the inhabitants would work out one-half of their annual tax upon it. Though the offer was accepted the road was never constructed. On the 12th of October, 1784, it was “voted that the north and south roads...

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Biographical Sketch of Samuel Blodget

Samuel Blodget pitched on a lot of one hundred acres on the old North and South road from Cornwall to Middlebury, which was destroyed some time before 1860. M. B. Williamson, R. A. Foot, A. M. Williamson, Mrs. M. M. Peet, and Mrs. Alberton S. Bingham are his grandchildren. He was taken prisoner at the same time as Eldad Andrus, and was bound to a tree and threatened with death. Upon making himself known to a British officer as a Freemason, this fate was averted, and it was reserved for him to be taken to Ticonderoga, “where he suffered all the abuse and tortures usual to captives, and was imprisoned on board an old vessel, which abounded with vermin and filth, until he obtained permission to go on shore and drive team and perform other duties which fell to the lot of captives. He was liberated in the fall, and returned to his family, who by this time had removed to Bennington or Arlington, where they remained until the announcement of peace.” He died on his original pitch in 1838, aged eighty-seven...

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Biographical Sketch of David Sperry

In 1788 David Sperry came from Wallingford, Vt., where he had resided during the war, and settled on the farm now owned and occupied by William Delong. He came originally from New Haven, Conn and was a man of unusual ability. It was his custom, it is said, to wake his sons in the morning with the following roll-call: “Daniel and Levi, David and Lyman, Heman and Dimon, Ebenezer Peck and Harvey, turn...

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Cornwall Vermont – Professional

Many of the lawyers and physicians who have practiced in Cornwall in times past will receive more particular mention in general chapters devoted to their respective professions. Among the former Martin Post stands alone; while representatives of the latter profession are numerous, viz., Drs. Nathan Foot, Frederick Ford, sr., Frederick Ford, jr., Solomon Foot, Abraham Fleming, Horace Brooks, Rodolphus Field, Oliver J. Eells, R. C. Green, C. B. Currier, Thomas Porter Matthews, Marcus O. Porter and Darius Matthews. Descendants of Dr. Mathews now living in town still occupy the old farm, namely, W. H., T. P.D., and Abbie P. Matthews, grandchildren. From them the writer has obtained most of the information for this chapter, as well as from the valuable history written by their father, Rev. Lyman Matthews. The physicians now living in town are Drs. E. O. Potter, a sketch of whom appears in the history of Middlebury, and Dr. George W. Bond. He was born in Crown Point, N. Y., on the 10th of April, 1853, was graduated from the Homceopathic Medical College of Cleveland, O., in 1883; practiced one year in Keeseville, N. Y., and a few months in Champlain, N. Y., and came here January,...

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Biographical Sketch of Jacob Peck

Jacob Peck located on the east side of the road north of the Reeve farm in 1786, and remained there until his death in 1837, aged eighty-four years. He was born in Farrington, Conn., in 1753. He reared a numerous and respectable family and left many descendants, some of whom still reside in town. Captain Alanson Peck, his son, occupies a part of the old homestead; M. M. Peck, Henry T. Peck and Mrs. Henry Lane and Mrs. Anna Sanford are children of Alanson. Edgar Sanford, son of the last named, has grandchildren, thus exhibiting the remarkable co-existence of five...

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Cornwall Vermont – Industry

The most prominent industry in town, and one for which her people are most widely known, is the raising of sheep. Immediately after the importation of Merino sheep from Spain, by Colonel Humphrey, of Connecticut, and later by Consul Jarvis, of Wethersfield, Vt., some of the farmers of Cornwall procured some of the variety for the purpose of improving their flocks. Merrill and A. L. Bingham have been among the foremost of breeders. They began importing French Merinos about 1846. Hon. Rollin J. Jones, who contributes a valuable portion of our general chapter on sheep raising in the county, has been and still is one of the most prominent breeders and dealers in town, Sylvester B. Rockwell being for some time in company with him in introducing the French Merino in the West. M. B. Williamson, H. F. Dean, Rollin Lane, Henry Lane, J. B. and Ira Hamlin, Henry Robbins, C. H. James, John Towle, Arthur Field, B. S. Field, L. W. Peet, W. H. and T. P. D. Matthews, Edgar Sanford and H. E. Sanford are also at present engaged in the...

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