Location: Pembroke New Hampshire

Narrative of the Captivity of Mrs. Isabella M’coy – Indian Captivities

Narrative of the Captivity of Mrs. Isabella M’coy, who was taken Captive at Epsom, N. H., in the Year 1747. Collected From the Recollections of Aged People who knew her, by the Rev. Jonathan Curtis, a Minister of that Town, about Seventeen Years ago, and by Him Communicated to the Publishers of the New Hampshire Historical Collections. The Indians were first attracted to the new settlements in the town of Epsom, N. H., by discovering M’Coy at Suncook, now Pembroke. This, as nearly as can be ascertained, was in the year 1747. Reports were spread of the depredations of the Indians in various places; and M’Coy had heard that they had been seen lurking about the woods at Penacook, now Concord. He went as far as Pembroke; ascertained that they were in the vicinity; was somewhere discovered by them, and followed home. They told his wife, whom they afterwards made prisoner, that they looked through cracks around the house, and saw what they had for supper that night. They however did not discover themselves till the second day after. They probably wished to take a little time to learn the strength and preparation of the inhabitants. The next day, Mrs. M’Coy, attended by their two dogs, went down to see if any of the other families had returned from the garrison. She found no one. On her return, as...

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Biography of Dr. Rufus Merrill Weeks

Dr. Rufus Merrill Weeks, who resides in the village of Suncook, and is a well-known dentist in the town of Pembroke, was born in Gilford, N.H., December 15, 1854, son of William and Lizzie (Hutchinson) Weeks. Benjamin Weeks, the grandfather of Dr. Weeks, in his younger days was a farmer. He later learned Gilford. He became prominent in business circles and in public affairs, holding various town offices; and he was connected with the old State militia. In politics he was a Whig. He married, and reared a family of seven children. Of the latter the only survivor is Mrs. Harriet Gilman, who resides in Gilford. Benjamin Weeks and his wife lived to a good old age. He left with a good estate the reputation of an able and successful business man. William Weeks, a native of Gilford and the third-born of his parents’ children, was brought up on a farm. At an early age he displayed a natural aptitude for agricultural pursuits. The active period of his life was spent in tilling the soil of a good farm in Gilford, and he attained prominence as a practical and successful farmer. In politics he acted with the Republican party in his later years. He served as a Selectman for some time, and represented his district in the legislature. His wife, Lizzie, became the mother of eight children, of whom...

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Biography of Samuel Smith Page

Samuel Smith Page, who for more than forty years was one of the most esteemed residents of Hopkinton, was born September 30, 1822, in Dunbarton, N.H. He is a descendant of Benjamin Page, who was born in 1640, in Dedbam, fifty-seven miles north-east of London, England. In 1660, on account of religious differences, Benjamin came to America, locating in Haverhill, Mass., where on September 21, 1666, he married Mary Whittier, who belonged to the family from which the poet, John G. Whittier, sprung. Their son, Jeremiah, the eldest of a family of sixteen, born September 14, 1667, was the next ancestor. He married Deborah Hendrick, of Newburyport, Mass., July 2, 1696; and they reared seven children, Caleb and Joshua. He died in 1752. Caleb Page, the next in line of descent, was born August 16, 1705, and died in 1785. He married in 1728 or 1729 Ruth Wallingford, of Boston, who died in 1738. In 1740 he married a widow Carleton, of Newburyport, who weighed three hundred and fifteen pounds. She, together with a huge arm-chair, now in the possession of the Stark family, had to be carried to meeting on an ox sled. In 1749 Caleb Page removed from Haverhill, Mass., to Atkinson, N.H., where he is said to have owned land measuring one mile in opposite directions from the site of the present academy. In 1751 he...

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Biography of William F. Head

William F. Head, an extensive manufacturer, lumber dealer, and agriculturist of Hookset, N.H., is well known as one of the most enterprising and successful business men of Merrimack County. He was born in Hookset, September 25, 1832, son of John and Annie (Brown) Head, and is a younger brother of the late ex-Governor Natt Head, with whom for thirty years, 1852 to 1883, he was associated in business. The Head family, although not one of the oldest in New England, has a history in this country of more than two hundred years. The emigrant ancestor was Arthur Head, a native, it is supposed, of Wales, who settled at New Castle, N.H., in 1671, and died there in September, 1711. He was survived by his wife, Sarah, who died not later than 1718. They reared five children, the eldest of whom was James Head, the great-great-grandfather of William F. James Head was born at New Castle in 1683. In 1707 he removed to Bradford, Mass., where he made his home until his death in 1743. He was twice married, and had three children by his first wife, Sarah Atwood, who died in 1717, and three by his second wife, Elizabeth Atwood, his first wife’s sister, Major James Head, the next in line of descent, being the last-born. Major James Head lived in Bradford, Mass., the place of his birth, until...

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Biography of Hon. George Peabody Little

Hon. George Peabody Little is an influential citizen of Pembroke, N.H. In his veins flows the blood of two old and reputable New England families, the Littles of Newbury, Mass., and the Peabodys of Danvers, the famous banker and philanthropist, George Peabody, having been his kinsman. Mr. Little was born in Pembroke, N.Y., June 20, 1834, a son of Dr. Elbridge G. and Sophronia Phelps (Peabody) Little. He is of the eighth generation of Littles in this country, tracing his descent from George Little, who settled in old Newbury, Mass., in 1640 or soon after. George Little was a tailor by trade, and, like most of 1650 he bought the freehold right in Newbury of John Osgood, Sr.; and he subsequently made many other purchases of land. The date of his death is uncertain, but is probably 1693 or 1694. He married first Alice Poor, who came from England in 1638. She died December 1, 1680, aged sixty-two. She was the mother of all his children, five in number. His second wife, Eleanor, widow of Thomas Barnard, of Amesbury, Mass., survived him, dying November 27, 1694. Joseph, the second child and eldest son of George and Alice (Poor) Little, is next in line of descent. He was born in Newbury, September 22, 1653, and was a permanent resident of the part of the town now called Newburyport from 1700...

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Biography of George Oliver Locke

George Oliver Locke, of Pembroke, an ex-member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, was born in South New Market, N.H., September 19, 1826, son of Simeon and Clarissa (Tash) Locke. His great-grand-father, David Locke, who was a native of Yorkshire, England, became an early settler in Rye, N.H., where he owned a good farm, and resided there until his death, which occurred at a good old age. Simeon Locke (first), grandfather of the subject of this sketch, followed farming in Epsom for a time. Later he moved to East Concord, N.H., and there spent the rest of his life. His habits of thrift and industry enabled him to acquire considerable property. In politics he voted with the Democratic party, but his retiring disposition would not permit him to take any active part in public affairs. He attended the Congregational church. At his death he was seventy-nine years old. He married Abigail Blake, a Epsom, who attained the age of seventy-three, and was the mother of nine children. Of these the third, Simeon Locke (second), was born in East Concord. He settled in South New Market, and there followed his calling of mechanic for the rest of his active period. He was an able business man as well as a good mechanic, and by making proper use of his opportunities he realized excellent financial results. He was a Democrat...

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Biography of Benjamin Lyman Culver

Benjamin Lyman Culver, late a retired resident of Pembroke, Merrimack County, N.H., who died December 6, 1896, was born in Norwich, Vt., August 10, 1830, son of the Rev. Lyman and Fanny (Hovey) Culver. The Culver family is of French origin, and is said to have been founded in America by Benjamin L. Culver’s great-grandfather, John Culver, who, it is thought, emigrated from Paris, France. He settled in Connecticut, where he engaged in agricultural pursuits for the rest of his life. His son, James Culver, grandfather of the subject of this sketch, was born in Connecticut; and in early life he settled in Vermont. He served in the French and Indian War. The active period of his life was spent in tilling the soil. He married; and he and his wife, who both lived to a good old age, reared a family of eight children. The parents were members of the Methodist Episcopal church and noted for their religious zeal. Two of their sons became ministers, and the Rev. David Culver preached in Pembroke in 1824. Lyman Culver, Benjamin L. Culver’s father, was born in Willington, Conn.; and at the age of seven years he accompanied his parents to Norwich, Vt. His boyhood and youth were passed upon a farm, and his leisure hours were devoted to study. He was practically a self-educated man; and at the age of...

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Biography of James Dodge

James Dodge, who cultivated a good farm in Pembroke, and owned considerable real estate in this and other towns, was born in Goffstown, N.H., November 14, 1829, son of John G. and Polly (Tallant) Dodge. His great-grandfather, Antipas Dodge, who lived to be one hundred and one years old, and died on Independence Day, was a native of Haverhill, Mass., and an early settler in Goffstown. The first wife of Antipas, Margaret Boise Dodge, was the mother of James Dodge, grandfather of the subject of this sketch. The names of his second wife and her children are unknown. James Dodge, who was a lifelong resident of Goffstown, and spent his active period in tilling the soil, married for his first wife Peggy Gordon, and reared a family of six children, none of whom are living. One of them was the mother of the famous midget, Commodore Nutt. James Dodge lived to be eighty-five years old, and his wife died at sixty-nine. John G. Dodge, born in Goffstown, was brought up to farming. At an early age he displayed a liking for agricultural pursuits. Subsequently he became a successful farmer. He was a prominent man of Goffstown in his day, serving as a Justice of the Peace for many years. In politics he supported the Democratic party. His entire life was passed in his native town, and he lived to...

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Biography of Albion H. French, M.D.

Albion H. French, M.D., a wellknown physician of Pittsfield, was born in Gilmanton N.H., March 27, 1847, son of Thomas H. and Sarah Ann (Brown) French. His great-grandfather, Ezekiel French, an Englishman, who was a pioneer of either Loudon or Hampton, N.H., spent his last days in Loudon, where he owned a farm. The second of Ezekiel’s two marriages was contracted with Sallie Smith. His son John was a native of Loudon. When a young man, John settled in Gilmanton, where he became a wealthy farmer, and died at the age of seventy-five years. He married Lucy T. Prescott, who lived to the advanced age of ninety-three or ninety-four years. She reared five children, of whom Thomas H., Albion H. French’s father, was the eldest. Of these children the survivors are: Ann M., the widow of William Brackett, late of Epsom, N.H.; and Warren B. The other two sons, John O. and Samuel P., were graduates of Dartmouth College and physicians. In the latter part of his life the father was a Republican. Both he and his wife were members of the Congregational church. Thomas H. French was born in Gilmanton in 1815. In early manhood he engaged in agriculture with a determination to succeed. He was rapidly becoming prosperous when he died, in the prime of life, aged thirty-seven years. He held a Captain’s commission in the State...

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Biography of Nathaniel Head

Nathaniel Head, Governor of New Hampshire from 1879 to 1881, was born May 20, 1828, son of John and Annie (Brown) Head. Having completed his education in the schools of Pembroke, he began life as a farmer and lumberman at a very early age, remaining on the old homestead. His military career commenced on September 1, 1847, when he was appointed Drum Major of the Eleventh Regiment, Third Brigade, First Division, of the State militia, in which he served four years. He was an original member of the famous Horse Guards, in which he was Drum Major and Chief Bugler during the existence of the corps. He was likewise connected with the Amoskeag Veterans of Manchester, N.H., and was an honorary member of the Boston Lancers and of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of that city. During his early life he served in various public capacities, being Deputy Sheriff many years, and in 1861 and 1862 representing his town in the State legislature. On March 26, 1864, he received an appointment that brought him more conspicuously before the public, Governor Gilmore making him Adjutant, Inspector, and Quartermaster-general. In 1875 occurred the celebrated controversy in the Senatorial district over the spelling of his name, so many of the votes being cast out that he failed of election; but on the following year his constituents, careful that a like mistake...

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Biography of Joseph Wilkins

Joseph Wilkins, a resident of Pembroke and a veteran of the Civil War, was born May 24, 1844, son of Jeremiah Hall and Mary (Thompson) Wilkins. He is not only a representative of an old New Hampshire family, but a lineal descendant of ancestors who were first settlers in this country. Bray Wilkins, who came from Wales, Brecknock County, was a descendant of Lord John Wilkins, who belonged to a family that traced their lineage back to 1090 and had borne many honorable titles. Lord John was a connection of the Bishop Wilkins who married the sister of the Protector, Oliver Cromwell. Bray, at the age of twenty, is supposed to have come to this country in the same ship with Endicott, about 1630, and to have first settled in Dorchester, Mass. Before 1659 he bought from Governor Richard Bellingham seven hundred acres of land called Wills Hill, which in 1661 was within Salem’s six-mile limit. He died in 1702, a patriarchal land owner, amidst the farms and homes of his sons and daughters. The portion of Bray’s son, John Wilkins, was situated in Danvers, Mass. John, son of John, who was born about 1689, went with his wife, Mary Goodale Wilkins, and two sons to Marlboro, Mass., in 1740. His eldest son, Josiah Wilkins, married Lois Bush, whose grandparents settled in Marlboro in 1690. Of Josiah’s five sons,...

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Biography of George W. Wilson

George W. Wilson, who owns a productive farm in Franklin, was born in Salisbury, N.H., July 15, 1824, son of Dr. Job and Nancy (Farnum) Wilson. His grandfather, Captain Nathaniel Wilson, who served as an officer in the Continental army during the Revolutionary War, settled in Gilmanton, N. H., where he spent the remainder of his life. He was an able Job Wilson, M.D., the father of George W., was born in Gilmanton. After graduating. from college, he began the practice of medicine in Boscawen. Later he moved to Salisbury and in 1831 to Franklin, settling on the farm which his son George W. now owns. The farm was tilled by hired assistants; and he continued to practise his profession with success until his death, which occurred in September, 1851. He was a physician of ability, and he provided his children with a good education. His wife, Nancy, who was a native of Concord, N.H., became the mother of ten children, of whom the only survivor is George W. Their son Benjamin died in infancy. Benjamin F. died in Battle Creek, Mich. Their daughter Lucinda Conant married Thomas Eastman, and died in West Concord. Abigail died in Salisbury, at the age of seventeen years. Lydia married Grove Stevens, of Haverhill, N.H., and died in that town. Jeremiah practised medicine in Contoocook, and died in May, 1896. Job P., who was...

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Biography of Charles A. Bailey

Charles A. Bailey, an able business man of Merrimack County, New Hampshire, and an esteemed resident of Hookset, was born in Pembroke, November 11, 1847, son of Charles and Sarah A. (Edmunds) Bailey. His paternal grandfather, Josiah Bailey, was born in Chester, Rockingham County, this State, on February 11, 1766. When a young man he removed with his family to Pembroke, Merrimack County, and was there engaged as a miller until his death, February 19, 1854. His wife, whose maiden name was Ruth Frost, was born March 8, 1769, in Tewksbury, Mass., and died in Pembroke, N.H., November 28, 1835. They were married November 15, 1792, and were the parents of ten children. Charles, the youngest child, was born in Dunbarton, N.H., September 28, 1810, and when but four years of age accompanied his parents to Pembroke, where he grew to manhood and was educated. He followed farming in connection with brickmaking for many years, coming from Pembroke to Hookset in 1852. Here he purchased the estate now owned and occupied by his widow, and was engaged in his two occupations until his death, June 2, 1896, being a most successful business man. He was highly esteemed wherever known for his uprightness of character. Politically, Pembroke served as Selectman two terms. Both he and his good wife early united with the Methodist Church of Suncook. On April 1, 1841,...

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Biography of Henry M. Baker

Henry M. Baker, of Bow, Merrimack County, lawyer and Congressman, and son of Aaron Whittemore and Nancy (Dustin) Baker, was born in Bow, January 11, 1841. He comes of patriotic and heroic ancestry. His great-great-grandfather, Captain Joseph Baker, a Colonial surveyor, married Hannah, only daughter of Captain John Lovewell, the famous Indian fighter, who was killed in the battle of Pigwacket, May 8, 1725. A few years later the township of Suncook, or Lovewell’s town, which included much of the present town of Pembroke, was granted by Massachusetts to the surviving participants and the heirs of those killed in that battle. As its boundaries conflicted with those of the town of Bow, chartered May 10, 1727, by Governor Wentworth, of New Hampshire, the grantees never received the full benefits of the grant. The resulting contention was terminated December 13, 1804, when that part of Bow east of the Merrimac River was annexed to Pembroke and Concord. The Colonial heroine, Hannah Dustin, was a maternal ancestor of Henry M. Baker. Another maternal relative was Walter Bryant, who surveyed many of the townships and the eastern boundary of the State, and was prominent in Colonial affairs. Captain Baker’s son, Joseph, married a descendant of one of the Scotch Covenanters, and settled in Bow. He was among the first to locate there, and the acres he cleared and cultivated are a part...

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Biography of Alger, William Rounseville

Alger, William Rounseville, son of Nahum and Catherine Sampson (Rounseville) Alger, was born in Freetown, Bristol County, December 28, 1822. He attended the common schools from the age of four to ten, then began to work for a livelihood; he worked five years in a cotton mill at Hookset, N. H., studied attentively in all available house, educating himself in the various branches of an academic course. He attended an academy in Pembroke, N. H., two years, and one year at Lebanon, N. H. He entered the divinity school of Harvard University in 1844, and was graduated in the class of 1847. He was pastor of the Unitarian church in Roxbury, from 1847 to 1855; then settled in Boston until 1873; then four years minister of Church of the Messiah in New York City. He is now engaged in preaching, lecturing and literary work. Mr. Alger was married in Roxbury, in September 1847, to Anne Langdon, daughter of Giles and Abigail Harris (Langdon) Lodge. Of this union were seven children: Henry Lodge, Abby Langdon, Caroline Rounseville, Arthur Martineau, William Ellerton, Philip Rounseville and Anne Langdon. He has held many offices and delivered many addresses in Masonic bodies and lectured for twenty-five years very extensively through the country before lyceums and literary societies. When chaplain of the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1863, the prayers he offered were so much...

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