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Location: Chester Vermont

Biography of John P. Rounsevel

John P. Rounsevel, formerly a well-known wool buyer of Claremont, was born in Unity, N.H., January 2, 1815, son of Royal and Betsey (Sweat) Rounsevel. Rounseville, the original spelling of the name, was changed to the present form by Joseph Rounsevel about the year 1768. In 1749 Thomas Rounseville wrote from Ottery St. Mary to Philip Rounseville, of England, who afterward came to this country. He settled in Freetown, Mass., and was called by the townspeople King Philip. His son Joseph, who, born January 3, 1737, died in 1827, went to Washington, N.H., between 1768 and 1772, from Middleboro, Mass., having previously resided in East Freetown. Joseph was a good farmer, a well-read man, and a Justice of the Peace. He executed the legal business of the town, and represented Washington with other towns in the General Court. His children were: Alden, Charity, Phebe, John, Rosamond, and Royal. Alden married Hannah Wells. Charity married Manasseh Farnsworth in 1784. Phebe never married. John married Rebecca Chamberlain in 1768. Rosamond married Thomas Putnam in 1787. Royal’s children were: Joseph, Minerva, Elle I., Lyman, and John P. Of them Joseph, who was born in 1796, and died December 24, 1858, married Betsey Laughton, who had by him five children-Sarah, Harriet, Holmes, Lyman, and Marinda. Minerva, born in 1799, who married John Stowell, had no children, and died in July, 1848. Elle I.,...

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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...

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Biography of Henry Marshall Elwell

Henry Marshall Elwell, Chairman of the Board of Selectmen of Langdon, Sullivan County, N.H., son of Robert and Phoebe (Evans) Elwell, was born in this town, April 13, 1839. His paternal grandfather, Benjamin Elwell, a lifelong resident of Langdon, was a wealthy farmer and highly esteemed citizen. He married a Miss Kendall, and had four children, named: Samuel, Betsey, Nancy, and Robert. Benjamin Elwell and his wife died on the same day, within a few minutes of each other; and their mortal remains were buried together in the same coffin. Samuel, the eldest son, lived in Langdon all his life, a well-to-do farmer. He married a Miss Jewett, and had four children-Electa, Sophronia, Nancy, and Samuel K. Betsey, the second child of Benjamin Elwell, married Simon Sartwell, a prosperous farmer of Langdon, very prominent in town affairs; and they had several children. Nancy married Colonel Ansel Glover, of Alstead, a leading Democratic politician, who was at one time a delegate from his party to the national convention in Baltimore. Robert, the father of Henry Marshall Elwell, acquired his education in the schools of Langdon. He began his active career as a farmer, and subsequently engaged in lumbering. He made a specialty of breeding shorthorned cattle, of which he had exhibits at the principal New England County and State Fairs. His farm, one of the largest in Sullivan County, contained...

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Biography of Charles H. Chandler

As state architect Charles H. Chandler had charge of some of the most important administrative and executive functions exercised by the state government. For many years before his appointment to the present office Mr. Chandler was recognized as one of the most competent and successful contractors and architects, and he had rendered valuable service since he became state architect in May, 1909, by appointment from Governor Stubbs. In 1911 he was resppointed by Governor Stubbs and had continued in the position under subsequent administrations. It will serve to indicate the importance of his office to mention some of the larger buildings in the coastruction or remodeling of which he had served as architect. Chief among these should be mentioned the splendid Memorial Building at Topeka, illustrated and described on other pages of this publication. He was also architect for the Gymnasium and Armory at Manhattan; the new Agricultural Building at Manhattan; the Manual Arts Building and the reconstruction of the main building at the State Manual Training Normal School at Pittsburg; the Preston B. Plumb Building at the State Normal School at Emporia; the Sheridan Hall at the State Normal School at Hays; and many others. Charles H. Chandler came to Kansas in April, 1879. He continued his literary education in the country schools of Southern Kansas in Chase County. He was singularly fortunate in having for a teacher...

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Biography of Levi Leland Chandler

Levi Leland Chandler has flgured in the life of Chase County as a farmer, merchant, and in all those activities which sum up the publice affairs of a community. Most of his life since early childhood had been spent in Chase County. He was born on a farm near North Springfield, Vermont, December 3, 1867, and is a son of Roswell Henry and Mary Elizabeth (Leland) Chandler and is a brother of Charles H. Chandler, present state architect of Kansas. The Chandler family were colonial Americans and by grant of King George II the town or township of Chester in Windsor County, Vermont, was given to people of the name. The original Chandler homestead was kept by the family until about forty years ago. Roswell H. Chandler was born in Vermont, married in that state, and in 1876 moved to New Hampshire and in the spring of 1879 to Chase County, Kansas. Here he located on a farm seven miles south of Cottonwood Falls at the trading point known as Bazaar, a station on the old Santa Fe trail. Boswell Chandler and wife spent their remaining years in that community. He was elected in 1893 and in 1895 a representative in the State Legislature and for many years held the office of justice of the peace. Levi L. Chandler grew up on his father’s farm in Chase County from...

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Biographical Sketch of Calvin Holton

Calvin Holton, a native of Chester, Vt., born March 3, 1809, came to Wolcott in November, 1831, and located upon the farm now owned by John Wells, near road 16. Here Mr. Holton erected a log house on his 100 acre farm, for which he had paid $200.00, there being then no wagon road within a distance of three miles. His family lived in this log house eighteen years, when he built a frame dwelling, the same now occupied by Mr. Wells. Mr. Holton is now a resident of Milton county, D. T., having become a pioneer for the second time. Five of his seven children are...

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Biographical Sketch of Rufus Bruce

Rufus Bruce, a native of Chester, Vt., and son of Rev. Rufus Bruce, came to Wolcott on horseback during the summer of 1831, and bought 100 acres of land on road 22 corner 17. paying therefor $200.00. He then hired a man to slash five acres of the heavy timbered land, and returned to Chester, where he soon after, December 14, married Mary Hovey. In January, 1832, he hired a man to bring them and their household effects to Wolcott, where, for the first six months, they resided in the house with John Phelps, on road 17. In August, 1832, however, their log house was completed, and they moved into it, where they resided until 1846, when a new frame building was completed, the same now occupied by their son, M. Bruce. Mr. Bruce was a brick-maker by trade, though he had taught school in Chester for several years. He was one of the nine original members of the Freewill Baptist church society in this town, which has since become extinct. He died June 17, 1874, aged over seventy years. His wife survived his death three...

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