Location: Keene New Hampshire

Biographical Sketch of John Josiah Holbrook

John Josiah Holbrook, son of Daniel Hill and Caroline Lawrence (Prime) Holbrook, was born at Swanzey, December 10, 1844, and died at Keene on the afternoon of Monday, March 24, 1844. He was educated at Mt. Caesar seminary of Swanzey, at the Leland and Gray seminary, of Townshend, Vt., the Keene high school, and then began his preparatory course at New London Literary and Scientific Institution, whence he was graduated in 1865. In 1872 he was graduated from a full course at Brown university, and entered upon a three years course at Newton, (Mass.), theological institute, graduating in 1875. The succeeding two years he held the position of professor of natural science and mathematics at New London academy. Mr. Holbrook preached occasionally between the years 1868 and 1879, was correspondent for several newspapers, wrote many articles on different subjects; but in 1879 he gave his attention to civil engineering and surveying, continuing this with great success until his decease. Of him Prof. Eli W. Blake, Jr., of Brown university, spoke as follows: ” Mr. Holbrook, while at Brown, was one of my special students, and distinguished himself above all others by his tastes and aptitude for experimental science.” He had a fine presence, and was distinguished for his scholarly mind and gentlemanly deportment, and was one well calculated to attract friends and call forth then respect. He was also...

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Biographical Sketch of Frederick Metcalf

Frederick Metcalf was born in Keene, June i 1, 1769. He married Esther Dwinell and reared a family of eleven children-five sons and six daughters. Four of these, Alvah E., Edwin G., William and Mary E., are living and reside in Keene. Mr. Metcalf died September 16, 1849. His wife died February 27, 1847. Mary E. married Arba Kidder and is now a widow. Alvah E. was born October 30, 1813, married Harriet Willis, of Alstead, and has had six children, only two of whom are living. Of these, Alice married C. H. Clark, and Hattie M, resides at home. Alvah E. Metcalf was engaged in the manufacture of pails at South Keene for twenty years and has carried on the lumber business and painting for many...

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Biography of Dr. Algernon Sidney Carpenter

Dr. Algernon Sidney Carpenter, son of Dr. Eber and Judith (Greene) Carpenter, was born in Alstead, N. H., October 16, 1814, and was descended from a family pre-eminently distinguished by the large number of skillful physicians it produced. He was educated in the common schools of his native town, and at Middlebury Medical college, from which he received the degree of M. D., in June, 1837. While acquiring his education he taught school in various places, and was, for a short time, in a store at Chesterfield. With the exception of a few years spent in Gardner and Northfield, Mass., his entire professional life of forty-eight years was passed in Keene. He stood in the front rank in his profession. and enjoyed a success which was unsurpassed by any practitioner in this part of New Hampshire. He was an honor to a profession which he reverently believed reflected high honors upon its members; and during his long, intelligent and conscientious practice, he gained, in an eminent degree, the respect and confidence of those who were the recipients of his indefatigable, ministrations. He was peculiarly sensitive to any violation of the conventional rules of medical etiquette, and was severe in his condemnation of charlatanism. He felt a deep interest in all that pertained to the welfare of Keene, and was prominent in its social life. He was a conspicuous member...

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Biographical Sketch of Hon. Peleg Sprague

Hon. Peleg Sprague became prominent in Keene, in 1792. He was born in Rochester, Mass., December 10, 1756, graduated at Dartmouth college, 1787, and settled in Keene. He was elected to Congress in 1797, to fill a vacancy, and was re-elect-l in 1799. He was taken sick, resigned, returned, and died April 20,...

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Biographical Sketch of Dr. Eben Carpenter

Dr. Eben Carpenter was born in Coventry, Conn., in 1780, married Judith Green, and reared a family of nine children. He located in Alstead, N. H., where he had a large practice. His only surviving son, George H., is a physician, and resides in Cleveland,...

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Biographical Sketch of Hon. Daniel Newcomb

Hon. Daniel Newcomb is first mentioned in the annals of Keene as a delegate to a county convention, held at Walpole, in 1780, of which he was clerk. He was born in Norton, Mass., in 1746, graduated at Harvard college, in 1768, settled in Keene in 1778, and commenced to practice law in 1783. In 1790 he was appointed chief judge of Cheshire county court. He was a justice of the superior court of judicature, from April 6, 1796, to 1798. In 1800 he was elected the first state senator from Keene, and resigned November 21, of the same year. In 1805 he was again elected. He died July 14, 1818. His house, at the south end of Main street, is still known as the “Judge Newcomb house.” It w-.; mainly through his efforts, and those of Noah Cooke, that the first court-house was built, in...

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Biographical Sketch of Nathan Wood

Nathan Wood, son of Joshua, who was one of the early settlers of Keene, was born here May 31, 1800. He was a blacksmith and farmer, married Lorinda Ruggles, of Rutland, Vt.. and bad born to him four children, as follows: Susan E.. widow of Hon. J. J. Allen, Jr., lives in town; Nathan, died December 4, 1861; Julia R. W., widow of Levi Porter; and Sarah L., both in...

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Biography of John Symonds

John Symonds was born in Hancock, N. H., May 18, 1816, and spent his boyhood in that town. In 1836 he commenced work as an apprentice with Elijah Reed, at his tannery in Hancock, and was employed there and at other places till 1841, when he began the tanning business himself, at South Antrim. But before his tannery was well under way it was destroyed by fire. He lost everything and was left $500.00 in debt. He then went to Salem, where he worked at his trade for a time. In 1848 he removed to Marlow, N. H., when he again established himself in business, and soon built up a thriving industry, which added much to the wealth and prosperity of the town. He was frequently chosen to positions of trust, having been selectman and tax collector of the town, a deputy sheriff of the county and county commissioner while residing in Marlow. In 1859 he purchased the Wilson tannery in East Sullivan, which he kept in active operation for thirteen years. He held public positions here, and during the war accumulated a handsome property. In 1872 he came to Keene, purchased the Nims farm in West Keene, and with A. M. Bigelow & Co., extensive tanners of Boston, built the Cheshire tannery, the most extensive one in the state, in such manner as Mr. Symondss experience taught him...

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Biographical Sketch of Archibald Robertson

Archibald Robertson, born in Scotland, in 1708, emigrated to America in 1754 with his wife, Elizabeth, and children. He came to Chesterfield, and December 14, 1775, he was chosen to represent Chesterfield and Hinsdale in the provincial congress, that was to assemble at Exeter, the twenty-first of that same month, being the first person ever chosen by the town for such a purpose. James, son of Archibald, came to Chesterfield in 1762, married twice, first, Sarah Bancroft, and second, Mrs. Mary Snow. Ebenezer, one of his large family of children, was born July 7, 1787, married Phila, daughter of Samuel Walker. Noyes, the third child of Ebenezer, was born November 4, 1818, married for his first wife Evaline M., daughter of David Day, and had born to him one son, Edgar, who died at Springfield. Ill., November 13, 1879. He married for his second wife Helen M. Cobb, who bore him two children, Gertrude E., and Cadmen D., both now living in Keene. Mr. Robertson now resides in this town. His wife died July 14,...

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Biographical Sketch of Dr. Gardner C. Hill

Dr. Gardner C. Hill was born in Winchester, N. H., March 20, 1829, and was educated in the public schools of his native town, and the academies of Chesterfield, Swanzey and Saxtons River, Vt., graduating from the latter institution. He taught school six years; the last year as principal of the ” old high school” at Winchester. He commenced the study of medicine with the late L. L. M. Comings, M. D., of Swanzey. He entered the Castleton Medical college, Vt., in 1853, and graduated with the class of 1856. He commenced the practice of medicine in Warwick, Mass., where he remained ten years, serving nine years on the board of education. He was then in the Medical department of Harvard college, Boston, Mass. In June, 1867, he removed to Keene, where he has since remained in practice. He has served six years as a member of the board of education, and three years as superintendent of schools. He represented the fourth ward in the common council two years, the last year serving as president of that body. He was also city physician, health commissioner for three years, county commissioner two years, and county treasurer. He is a member of the Massachusetts Medical Society and Connecticut River Valley Medical Society. He is married to Rebecca F. Howard, of Walpole, N. H., and has two children, William H. and Rebie...

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Biographical Sketch of W. A. Barrett

W. A. Barrett, son of Luther, was born in Stoddard, came to Keene in 1856, and worked that season for H. Pond & Co., at the brick-making business. He became a partner in the firm in 1857, and with the exception of three years he has been a member of the firm under various titles, until he engaged in the business alone in 1882. He served three years in the war for the Union, in Co. G, 14th N. H. Vols. He has been selectman of Keene, married Maria Fradenburg, October 23, 1850, and has a family of three sons and three...

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Biographical Sketch of John Holbrook

John Holbrook, son of John, was born in Uxbridge, Mass., August, 17, 1788. He married Mercy Hill, came to Swanzey in 1802, and located in the southern part of the town on the farm now owned by Israel Gun. He was a carpenter and wheelwright, and died in 1838. Five of his ten children are living, two of them, Sophia, widow of Carlistine Blake, and Daniel H., residing in Keene. The latter was born at Swanzey January 8, 1806. He received a common school education, and was engaged as a farmer and manufacturer of and dealer in lumber until his removal to Keene in 1865. Here he followed the lumber business two or three years, when he retired from active business. Mr. Holbrook has, up to a late date, taken an active interest in the Keene Water Works, and from the time of his serving on the first committee in 1868, has held the office of commissioner, superintendent or kindred position, and even for the past two years, since he retired therefrom, his advice and counsel has been almost constantly brought into requisition. Mr. Holbrook married, September 5. 1837, Caroline Lawrence, daughter of Josiah and Sophia (Lawrence) Prime, of Swanzey, who died December 5, 1880. The fruit of this marriage was four children,-Ellen Sophia, Chloe Prime, John Josiah and Frances Victoria.-only two of whom, Chloe Prime and Frances Victoria...

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Biographical Sketch of Dr. S. M. Dinsmore

Dr. S. M. Dinsmore was born in Antrim, N. H., June 22, 1836, graduated as an M. D. March, 1860, from Columbian university, of Washington, D. C., practiced medicine in Sullivan and Hillsboro counties for twenty years, and located in Keene in 1881, where he now...

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Biographical Sketch of Henry Coolidge

Henry Coolidge was born in Massachusetts, July 1.4, 1787, and married Calista Pond, who was born September 18, 1791. He came to Keene when quite young, and clerked in Fosters store at Ash Swamp, for a time. He was clerk of the court of common pleas for many years. He was very highly respected, and was often consulted on legal points, although not a lawyer. He was a surveyor, and did a great deal of that business. He died March 20, 1843. Only one of his six children is living, Jane F., who married Dr. A. S. Carpenter, and resides in...

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