Location: Belchertown Massachusetts

Biography of Josiah Edwards Dwight

Josiah Edwards Dwight, a member of the noted old New England family to which President Timothy Dwight of Yale College belonged, is one of the leading Concord, N.H. Born in Belchertown, Mass., May 17, 1839, son of Harrison D. and Sophia (Cook) Dwight, he traces his lineage through his mother, also, back to the early days of the New England colonies. On the paternal side his first ancestor to settle in this country was John Dwight, who came from Dedham, England, in 1634, and located in the part of Massachusetts afterward named Dedham. He was the second man of wealth in the settlement, and with eighteen others owned the land comprising later the town of Dedham and about nine surrounding towns. His daughter Mary was the first white child born in the town of Dedham. John Dwight’s son Timothy, from whom the subject of this sketch is directly descended, was born in Dedham, England, in 1629. He inherited the estate and virtues of his father, and was one of the prominent men of his day. A sturdy soldier, he was cornet of a troop in his younger days, and was afterward commander of a company of foot, and is commonly alluded to as Captain Timothy Dwight. His title was no empty honor, for he was engaged in ten expeditions against the Indians; and in 1660 he was one of...

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Biography of Frank Lyman Gold

FRANK LYMAN GOLD-A man of wide and varied activities, each of which he has carried on successfully after he had gained full knowledge of the field of business into which he was entering, the story of Frank Lyman Gold is full of interest. (I) He belongs to a notable old New England family, whose founder was Joseph Gold, born in London, England, who came to America when he was nineteen years old. According to family records, he served for seven years in the Revolutionary War, lived for a time in Northbury, Connecticut, and died in Roxbury, Vermont, in 1829. He married, in Northbury, Patience Goodenough, who died in 1826. One of his children, Joseph, is of further mention. (II) Joseph Gold, son of Joseph Gold, married, and his son, Miner, is of further mention. (III) Miner Gold, son of Joseph Gold, was born in Pelham, Massachusetts, in 1802, and died in Belchertown in May, 1882. He was a scholar, teacher, and good business man, and taught mathematics at Amherst College, besides writing an arithmetic text used in New England schools. Miner Gold married Olivia Conkey, who died in 1878, and among their children was a son, Theodore, of further mention. (IV) Theodore Gold, son of Miner and Olivia (Conkey) Gold, was born in Pelham, Massachusetts, in 1837, and died January 4, 1889. After his marriage he moved to Belchertown,...

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Biography of David Hawes

David Hawes, the subject of this biography, father of Major Chas. W. and Frank B. Hawes, was born in Belchertown, Massachusetts, October 19, 1809, and died in Rock Island, Illinois, April 20, 1900, aged ninety years six months and one day. In all that makes for good citizenship, it may be truly said that David Hawes was a model. He was one of the earliest settlers of Rock Island His grandfather, John Hawes, was a Revolutionary soldier, fighting with the American patriots at Lexington and Bunker Hill, and later participating in the capture of Ticonderoga, being wounded in this latter engagement. David Hawes resided in Massachusetts until 1835, when, in company with Lemuel Andrews, his brother-in-law, he set his face westward. He reached St. Louis a month later, and in October of 1835, arrived in Rock Island. Rock Island, at the time of his arrival here, was a trading post for the Sac and Fox Indians. There were but ten houses in the village inhabited by white men. In December of 1835, Mr. Hawes returned to St. Louis, overland, accompanied by Mr. Andrews. They followed the old Indian or “Cow” trail. The trip was one filled with hardships. Lost in a blizzard, Mr. Andrews almost succumbed and Mr. Hawes struggled through the storm to the nearest settlement. Mr. Andrews was rescued in the nick of time. In January of...

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Biography of Harold Burnett Ketchen

HAROLD BURNETT KETCHEN, prominent in business circles in Belchertown, Massachusetts, and associated with worthwhile achievements for the betterment of the city, is of a family long established in New England. (I) Andrew Ketches, the first American representative, was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, and died in Torrington, Connecticut, then called Wolcotville, in 1866. He came to America in 1822 to practice his trade of carpet weaving. After spending a short time in Seekonk, Rhode Island, he settled for the remainder of his life in Torrington. (II) Andrew Gilmore Ketchen, son of Andrew Ketchen, was born in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, April 22, 1824, and died in Belchertown, Massachusetts, July 13, 1913. A carpet weaver like his father, he lived in Torrington and other New England towns. For fifteen years he had a business of his own in Torrington, weaving rag carpets. His last fifteen years were spent with his son, Arthur, in Springfield and Belchertown. He married (first) Caroline Mead, who died in May, 1867; (second) Eliza Hart. (III) Arthur Robert Ketchen, son of Andrew Gilmore Ketchen, was born in Hartford, Connecticut, November 30, 1860. He was educated in the Torrington schools, and worked on neighboring farms as a boy. When he was twenty-three years old he became a fireman, later an engineer on the Boston & Albany Railroad, remaining thus employed for ten years. In West Springfield and later Springfield,...

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