Location: Pittsfield Massachusetts

Ancestors of John Richardson Bronson of Attleboro, MA

JOHN RICHARDSON BRONSON, M. D., who for over half a century was one of the best known practitioners of medicine in southern Massachusetts and part of Rhode Island, and who for upward of fifty years was a resident of Attleboro, was a native of Connecticut, born in the town of Middlebury, New Haven county, June 5, 1829, son of Garry and Maria (Richardson) Bronson.

The Bronson family was early planted in the New World. John Bronson (early of record as Brownson and Brunson) was early at Hartford. He is believed, though not certainly known, to have been one of the company who came in 1636 with Mr. Hooker, of whose church he was a member. He was a soldier in the Pequot battle of 1637. He is not named among the proprietors of Hartford in the land division of 1639; but is mentioned in the same year in the list of settlers, who by the “towne’s courtesie” had liberty “to fetch woods and keepe swine or cowes on the common.” His house lot was in the “soldiers’ field,” so called, in the north part of the old village of Hartford, on the “Neck Road” (supposed to have been given for service in the Pequot war), where he lived in 1640. He moved, about 1641 to Tunxis (Farmington) He was deputy from Farmington in May, 1651, and at several subsequent sessions, and the “constable of Farmington” in 1652. He was one of the seven pillars at the organization of the Farmington Church in 1652. His name is on the list of freemen of Farmington in 1669. He died Nov. 28, 1680.

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Grinnell Family of New Bedford, MA

Since the early settlement of Newport and Portsmouth, R. I., shortly after 1638, the Grinnells have been identified with Rhode Island and Massachusetts history, the earlier generations living largely in the towns of Newport county, R. I., and for the past hundred and more years branches of this southern Rhode Island family have been representative of the best citizenship in the old Massachusetts town of New Bedford. At New Bedford lived Capt. Cornelius Grinnell, a patriot of the Revolution, and long engaged in the merchant service, who married into the old historic Howland family, and one of whose sons, Joseph Grinnell, for almost a decade represented the New Bedford district in the United States Congress, and was long prominent as a merchant and manufacturer and banker of the town; and there lived the late Lawrence Grinnell, father of the late Frederick Grinnell, who so long was at the head of the Providence Steam and Gas Pipe Company and the General Eire Extinguisher Company, a man of genius in mechanical lines, whose inventions gave him distinction, and one of whose sons, Russell Grinnell, is at this time vice president of the General Fire Extinguisher Company. It is with this New Bedford branch of the Grinnell family this article deals.

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Biography of Henry Harrison Edwards

Henry Harrison Edwards, a watchmaker of acknowledged ability, who is now residing in Allenstown, was born in Laconia, N.H., July 28, 1840, son of Nathaniel and Rachel (Ranlett) Edwards. His grandfather, Ebenezer Edwards, who in his earlier years followed the sea, subsequently learned the hatter’s trade, and followed it in Laconia for many years. Another source of income to him was the Martha Watson, a native of Dover, N.H., who also died at the age of sixty-eight. Of their eleven children David, William, Charles, Eben, Mary, and Pierpont are living. Nathaniel Edwards, father of Henry H., was born in Plymouth, N.H., December 7, 1813. He learned the shoemaker’s trade in New Market, N.H., and followed it for several years in his native town. Later he became assistant superintendent of the Lake Water Company. In politics he was originally a Whig, and later became a Republican. He served as Tax Collector for some time, and was Chief of the Fire Department for a number of years. In his latter years he attended the Baptist church. He died at the age of seventy-two years. His wife, Rachel, who is a native of Gilmanton, N.H., became the mother of three sons-George W., Henry H., and Frank A. George W., now deceased, married for his first wife Miss Lawton, of Pittsfield, Mass., who had no children. His second wife, Ida Mills Edwards, of...

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Biographical Sketch of Dr. Edward Horatio Foster

Dr. Edward Horatio Foster, formerly a well-known medical practitioner of Concord, was born October 13, 1839, in Canterbury, N.H., son of David M. and Sarah (Bradley) Foster. He is a direct descendant of Reginald Foster, who settled in Ipswich, Mass., in 1635. His grandfather, Asa Foster, served in the French and Indian War, and under General Pepperell was at the capture of Louisburg. During the Revolutionary War Asa was one of General Arnold’s body-guard at the time of the General’s desertion. When he died in Canterbury in 1862, he was ninety-six years old. His son, David M. Foster, a native of Canterbury, followed the occupation of school teacher in his earlier days, and was greatly interested in politics. David’s wife, Sarah, was born in Brunswick, Me. Edward H. Foster attended public and private schools in his native town, and then entered Pittsfield, Mass. He graduated from Bowdoin College, Maine, in 1866. Dr. Foster first located in Bradford, Vt., remaining one year. For three years thereafter he was located in Marblehead, Mass. In July, 1872, after spending a year on the Pacific Coast, he came to Concord, where he practised for the remainder of his life. In politics Dr. Foster voted independently. He was President of Pass Creek Ranch Company, of Wyoming, and also of the Eureka Headache Cure Company, of this city. Dr. Foster was twice married. His first...

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Biography of Jacob Newton Butler, M.D.

Jacob Newton Butler, M.D., of Lempster, N.H., one of the best known physicians in this part of Sullivan County, was born in Lyndeboro, Hillsborough County, this State, February 6, 1821, son of Jacob and Sarah (Blanchard) Butler. His great-grandfather, William Butler, came, it is said, from England, and settled in Essex County, Massachusetts. He married, so we are informed, Sarah Perkins, and had seven children, three sons and four daughters. The three sons enlisted in the War for Independence, and one never came back. One was taken prisoner and carried to Halifax, N.S., where he died of small-pox. The other son, Jonathan Butler, grandfather of Jacob N., was born in Gloucester, Mass., and was the first of the family to settle in Lyndeboro. He served in the battle of Bunker Hill and in many other engagements during the War for Independence. While in the service he worked at his trade of a blacksmith nine months, and later followed his trade in connection with farming. He was Town Clerk for a great many years. He died in 1844, aged ninety-two years; and his wife, Lois Kidder Butler, died in 1846, aged eighty-six years. They were the parents of twelve children, as follows: Sarah, born January 11, 1779; Hannah, born October 27, 1780; Jacob, first, born December 30, 1782; Jonathan, born March 1, 1785; Lois, born April 27, 1787; Rachel, born...

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Biographical Sketch of P. H. Monahan

P. H. Monahan, the father of the broom corn interests of Arcola and a highly esteemed citizen of that place, was born in County Galway, Ireland, February 19, 1837. His parents were John and Mary (Shiel) Monahan, natives of the same County. At the age of thirteen years young Monahan emigrated from his native land to America and settled in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. Later he came west and located in Arcola, which at that time was a mere hamlet. Here Mr. Monahan was married to Hannah Quirk, who was a native of Douglas County and a sister of the late John Quirk, of Arcola. To Mr. and Mrs. Monahan have been born four children : Marie, now residing in New Mexico; Thomas, the present mayor of Arcola, and Henry and Katie. P. H. Monahan has served in the town council and was chairman of the board. His mother died in 1862, and his father died when Mr. Monahan was only three months old. He is one of the old landmarks of Arcola, having resided here nearly half a century, and is universally respected by...

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Biographical Sketch of Allen, Thomas

Allen, Thomas, son of Thomas and Anne C. (Russell ) Allen, was born October 19, 1849, at St. Louis, Mo. He was educated at the high school, Pittsfield, Mass., at the Williston Seminary, Easthampton, and then entered the Washington University, St. Louis, Mo., after which he studied art at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, at Dilsseldorf, Germany, where he graduated from the master class in 1878, and afterward studied three years in France. He first exhibited his work in New York, at the National Academy of Design, in 1877, and has been represented in the National Academy at almost every exhibition since then. In 1882 and in 1884 was made an associate of the National Academy of Design. In 1880 he was elected a member of the Society of American Artists. His specialty is landscape and animal painting. After nearly ten years of foreign study, he opened his studio in the Pelham Studio on Boylston Street, Boston; not finding it sufficiently commodious, however, and meeting with marked success as a painter, he purchased a house on Commonwealth Avenue, in 1883, for a permanent home, and there built a large studio at the top of the house which he now occupies. Mr. Allen was first married in 1880, in Northampton, to Eleanor G., daughter of Prof. J. D. and Louisa (Goddard) Whitney of Cambridge, who left him one child;...

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Biography of Frank Levi Root

Frank Levi Root has lived in the vicinity of Oketo for thirty years. he had prospered in a degree sufficient to meet his sanguine expectations, and not only owned and controls a large body of rich farming land in Marshall County but is also actively identified with Oketo’s business affairs and its civic and community life. Mr. Root was born in Cedar County, Iowa, May 21, 1865. His father, Levi Root, born in Ohio July 9, 1832, grew up in his native state and when a young man moved to Iowa. He was married in Cedar County and had a large farm in that and Jones County. He was an expert foundryman by trade, and in 1867 he left Iowa and went to Pittsfield, Massachusetts, and for ten years was employed in a foundry, returning to Iowa in 1877. For a year before his death he had visited his son in Oketo, and while returning to the home of his daughter Mrs. Ida. M. Belcher in Iowa he died at Ottumwa March 4, 1910. Politically he was a democrat, and was a member of the Masounic order. Levi Root married Eliza Cruise, who was born in Ohio January 24, 1842, and died in Cedar County, Iowa, September 20, 1906. They have three children: Ida, who lives in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. wife of Byron Belcher, a farmer; Frank L.; and...

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Biographical Sketch of William Erastus Cushing

Cushing, William Erastus; lawyer, born, Cleveland, Sept. 23, 1853; son of Henry Kirke and Betsy Maria Williams Cushing; educated Western Reserve College, A. B., 1875; Harvard Law School, LL. B., 1878; married, Pittsfield, Mass., June 4, 1884, Carolyn J. Kellogg; served a number of years as member of Ohio State Board of Commissioners on Uniform Laws, member law firm Cushing Siddall & Lamb; trustee University School, Adelbert College, First Presbyterian...

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Biographical Sketch of Frank Ray Walker

Walker, Frank Ray; architect; born, Pittsfield, Mass., Sept. 29, 1877; son of Frank and Helen Theresa Rauous Walker; educated, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; post graduate work in design; pursued study of architecture in France and Italy, 1903-1904; Walker & Weeks, architects; member Cleveland Engineering Society, Chamber of Commerce, Cleveland Chapter, American Institute, M. I. T., Alumni Ass ‘n, Northern Ohio; member Hermit, Athletic, M. I. T. Clubs, New York City; East End Tennis Club, Cleveland Y. M. C....

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Biography of Charles S. Ferry

CHARLES S. FERRY – The firm of Charles S. Ferry & Son, lumber dealers of Pittsfield, which has been conducting one of the largest concerns of its kind in Western Massachusetts, was established by the late Charles S. Ferry, in 1886. In the rapid growth of Pittsfield during the past years this firm played a most important part, because it supplied the lumber and the builders’ materials for much of the construction work that has been done in Pittsfield and the surrounding country. It is over three and a half decades since Charles S. Ferry took over the business from Wadhams Brothers, who had conducted it for a number of years, and established the firm of C. S. Ferry & Son. Charles S. Ferry was born in 1825, in Chicopee, Massachusetts, and died at Salt Lake City, March 30, 1899. He was for over thirty years a lumber dealer and planing mill proprietor in Springfield, Massachusetts, and his business is today being successfully carried on by his sons, the firm consisting of C. K. Ferry, president, and F. G. Ferry, treasurer, the firm name, however, remaining unchanged. The yards are located on Center and Church streets, and cover in all about 85,000 square feet of ground and floor space, the plant consisting of the main storage shed and offices of the firm, and another large shed directly opposite, on...

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Biography of William Edward Staples

WILLIAM EDWARD STAPLES – The same energetic characteristics that were the means of conquering all hardships that apparently stood in the path of Mr. Staples’ career during the earlier part of his life have proven the dominant feature of his activities, and have accompanied him throughout an interesting course both of service and of leadership in the business and the political world. He is conceded to be one of the Western Massachusetts captains of industry and of civic advancement, who, beginning life with but few advantages of a material kind, overcame all difficulties by sheer hard work, pluck, and native resourcefulness, and achieved his present place of high esteem among his fellowmen. The community has been the gainer because of his enterprising relationships to the advancement of the business interests of Pittsfield. Not only has he frequently been accorded offices of trust in local business and politics, but in the State Legislature he continues to fulfill the highest anticipations of his many friends. He is a son of Chauncey Staples, who by occupation was a farmer, and of Bridget (Shannon) Staples. William Edwards Staples was born in Adams, March 31, 1866, and he attended the Richmond district schools until he was about eleven years of age when, as his father had died while he was a child, it became incumbent upon him to go to work in cotton mills...

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Biography of Thomas Patrick Hennelly

THOMAS PATRICK HENNELLY, advancing in the forefront with his profession in Western Massachusetts, specializing in its surgical department, and allying his methods with those of up-to-date discovery and incentive, is a surgeon and physician of widely recognized talents and ability. Established in his practice at Pittsfield for a period of sixteen years, the repute of his skill is not confined to this section, and among honors that have come to him are those of association with some of the foremost medical fraternities of State and Nation. Thomas Patrick Hennelly was born in Waltham, Massachusetts, March 18, 1882, the son of Thomas and Margaret (Creavin) Hennelly, and received his education at the schools of his native place and at Boston College. He afterwards matriculated at Tufts College, and graduated there with the class of 1904, receiving his degree of Bachelor of Arts. In preparation for his chosen vocation, he graduated at the Harvard University Medical School in the class of 1908, with the degree of Bachelor of Medicine. He then for some time enjoyed the advantages attaching to interne and house surgeon practice at both the Free Hospital For Women and the City Hospital in Boston, and meantime was appointed investigator for the Massachusetts State Board of Health. He began the practice of medicine in Pittsfield, in 1910, a practice that is for the larger part surgical. Since 1922 he...

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Biography of Alfred Chester Dale

ALFRED CHESTER DALE – Having come from South Dakota to Massachusetts a little more than twenty-five years ago, when he was thirteen years of age, Alfred Chester Dale, of Pittsfield, is today secretary of the Dale Brothers’ Laundry, Inc., whose branch in that city is only one of five which the corporation operates in this State. The remarkable expansion of the Dale Brothers’ business covers a wide range of territory in two States and in four counties, not to mention the overlapping of much of the contiguous area. Mr. Dale was born in Wilmot, South Dakota, April 17, 1882, and removed to Springfield in 1897. In that city Mr. Dale’s father and his brother began to engage in the laundry business and it was but a comparatively short time until they had become favorably known and firmly established. Starting on an humble scale, they kept pace with the increase in business with more commodious and better quarters and improved machinery. Later they enlarged the field of their operations by establishing an additional laundry in Springfield. Soon they found that there was a demand for their class of work in other cities and towns, and opened a laundry in Ware, where they catered to the people of that industrial community and its vicinity in Hampshire County, their first laundry, in Springfield, being in Hampden County. With these three laundries in...

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