Charles O. Eastman, formerly the Postmaster of Claremont, was born October 25, 1824, in Lisbon, N.H., one of the seven children of Nicholas and Hannah (Baker) Eastman. Until he reached the age of twenty-one years he remained with his parents, receiving his education in the district schools and the Methodist Seminary at Newbury, from which he duly graduated. After leaving the seminary, he taught school for several winters. In 1845 he left home to go to Windsor, Vt., where he remained for five years. Coming to Claremont in 1850, he was first employed in the bookbindery of the Claremont Manufacturing Company. While in their employ he was attacked by a serious illness, from which he never fully recovered during the ensuing thirty-five years of his life. This long period was one of patient suffering and of noble struggle with disease. He was a member of the Republican party. In 1861 President Lincoln appointed him Postmaster of Claremont. Having entered upon the duties of the office on June 17 of the same year, he continued to serve until July 11, 1870, a term of service distinguished by marked ability and faithfulness. He is spoken of as having been most accommodating and exceptionally fitted for the office. Beginning in 1872, he by careful Western New Hampshire. He was a director of no less than four insurance companies of the State, and he was regarded as a safe and wise counsellor.
To quote the words of one who knew him well, Mr. Eastman was “a pronounced and consistent Methodist. Quiet in his demonstrations, the spiritual and temporal welfare of his church held a sacred place in the deeper recesses of his heart.” In his seventeenth year he had joined the Free Baptist church at Lisbon; but, on locating at Claremont, he united with the Methodist church there. He was for thirty-six years the secretary of the Methodist Society, and for twenty-one years its treasurer. Also, for a time he was the Secretary of Claremont Junction Camp Meeting Association. His accounts bespoke faithfulness and accuracy. From the year 1864 he was a prominent member of the Masonic order. October 4, 1893, succumbing at length to the disease which had so long made his life one of patient suffering, he died of cancer at his home in Claremont. He left to the town a perpetual fund, amounting to three hundred dollars, one-half of the annual interest to be used in the purchase of books for the town library, and the balance for the purpose of caring for the family monument and lot. He also willed the same amount to Lisbon, N.H., his native town, to be used in the keeping of his father’s monument and lot in good condition, and for the purchase of books for the town library.
On February 25, 1849, Mr. Eastman married Eleanor Jane Carroll, daughter of John Prince and Rachel (Powers) Carroll, then living at Cornish, N.H. Her father was a grandson of the niece of Aquilla Chase. Aquilla Chase, who was noted for his wealth in England, fled to this country to escape persecution. Mrs. Eastman’s maternal grandfather was Ezekiel Powers, of Croydon, N.H.; and her great-grandfather, also named Ezekiel, was one of the original settlers of Croydon. Her parents had eight other children; namely, Susan, Saphronia, Eliza, Salena, Alonzo, Amanda, Lysander, and Rachel. Susan married J. Wakefield; Saphronia married George Stockwell, of Croydon; Eliza married Moody Hook, of Cornish; and Salena married Carnovas Gage, of Enfield. Alonzo, who was well known throughout the State, spent an active life. In 1868 he entered into business at Warner, taking his son Edward into a partnership that continued for twenty years. Then the business was sold, and he afterward had charge of the Winslow House on Mount Kearsarge and of the Kearsarge House at Warner. An outspoken Republican, he never sought political honors; and he was much interested in the welfare of his town. His reputation was that of a man of high integrity and generous impulses. He died April 21, 1894, leaving a widow and two sons. The former before marriage was a Miss Margaret Adams of Warner. The sons are: Edward H. Carroll and Professor Clarence F. Carroll. Professor Carroll, who is a graduate of Yale College, and was formerly a teacher of the Normal School at New Britain, Conn., is now the Superintendent of Schools at Worcester, Mass. Alonzo Carroll’s first marriage was contracted with Mercy Hale. Amanda married John G. Brockway, whose son, Dr. Fred Brockway, is Professor of Anatomy in the College New York and a writer of some distinction on anatomy. He was the first House Surgeon of the Johns Hopkins Hospital at Baltimore, Md., having been selected for that position on account of his ability and scholarship. He is thoroughly versed in his profession. To increase his knowledge of medicine he travelled abroad and studied with an eminent physician in Scotland. Colonel Lysander Carroll, of Concord, N.H., is a strong and influential Republican and well known in politics. He held the position of Postmaster of Concord for a number of years. Rachel, the youngest child, died young.