Biography of Hiram Parker
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Hiram Parker, Postmaster of Lempster, and an ex-member of the New Hampshire legislature, was born in this town, July 3, 1830, son of Benjamin and Olive (Nichols) Parker. His grandfather, Joseph Parker, moved his family from New Ipswich, N.H., to Lempster, first settling in the northern part of the town. At a later date Joseph removed to the farm now owned by his grandson. While he owned and successfully conducted a farm, he was also engaged in the manufacture of potash. His death occurred March 14, 1825. He married Sarah Wright, a native of Washington, N.H.; and his children were: Sally, Jeremiah, Joseph, Benjamin, Jonas, Bateman, Almena, George, and Hiram.
Benjamin Parker, who was born in New Ipswich, came to Lempster when he was three years old. He was engaged in farming; and he attained prominence in public affairs, serving 1845. His wife, Olive, was a daughter of Timothy and Ann (Carey) Nichols, of Lempster, who had eight children; namely, Polly, Cynthia, Eunice, Olive, Lavina, Niantha, Timothy, and Troop. Benjamin Parker’s children were: Emily L., Hiram, and Hosea W. Emily is now the widow of Ransom P. Beckwith, late of Lempster, and has two children-Walter P. and Hira R. Walter P. Beckwith, who is the principal of the State Normal School in Salem, Mass., wedded Mary Sails, of Adams, Mass., and has one daughter, Fanny. Hira R. Beckwith, now an architect and builder in Claremont, married Libbie Martin, a native of Springfield, Vt. The Hon. Hosea W. Parker, who was a member of Congress, and is now an attorney in Claremont, married Louvisa Southgate, of Bridgewater, Vt. His only daughter, Lizzie S. is now the wife of the Rev. Lee McCollester, of Detroit, Mich., and has two children-Parker and Catharine. Mrs. Benjamin Parker died March 10, 1887.
Hiram Parker acquired a common-school education. He was but fifteen years old when the death of his father made it necessary for him to take the management of the homestead farm. In 1887 he moved to the village, and engaged in business at his present stand. His store, stocked with a good assortment of general merchandise, is largely patronized, and brings him a good income. At the same time conducting his farm of one hundred and fifty acres, he is one of the busiest men in town. Politically, he supports the Democratic party; and he is a leading spirit in local public affairs. For thirteen years he has been a member of the Board of Selectmen. He was Town Clerk and Treasurer for two years, he served on the School Board for six years, he represented this town in the legislature in 1863 and 1864, he served on the State Board of Agriculture for nine years, and he has been Postmaster for the past four years. Actively interested in the Patrons of Husbandry, he was formerly Master of Silver Mountain Grange, No. 196, and is now a member of Pomona Grange of Sullivan County. Both he and Mrs. Parker are members of the Universalist Society, which he serves in the capacity of secretary.
On October 11, 1854, Mr. Parker was united in marriage with Helen G. Moore. She was born in Lempster, June 16, 1836, daughter of Charles and Aira (Beckwith) Moore. Her father, who was a native of Bolton, Mass., settled upon a farm in this town soon after his marriage. He died in 1870; and his wife, who was born in Unity, N.H., died in 1882. They were the parents of four children, namely: Harriet, who became the wife of J. N. Butler, M. D., of Lempster; George, who married Almina Weed, of Unity; Helen G., who is now Mrs. Parker; and Charles Austin, a travelling man, who married Ella Smith, of Ludlow, Vt., and resides in Rutland. Mr. and Mrs. Parker have had four children, namely: Fred C., born June 27, 1858; Frank B., born May 29, 1860, who died in 1863; Jennie L., born November 10, 1864; and Carl Austin, born April 28, 1879. Fred C., who graduated from the Agricultural College in Hanover with the class of 1880, is now a merchant in Acworth, N.H. He wedded Mary Stafford, of Lempster, who has had two children: Bertha, born in March, 1893, who died in infancy; and Leslie Hiram, born November 13, 1895, who died January 5, 1897. Jennie L., a graduate of the Claremont High School, is now the wife of Herbert F. Olmstead, Sutton, Canada, and a dealer in musical instruments in Lempster. She has one son, Percy F., born May 14, 1893. Carl Austin Parker is attending the Kimball Union Academy in Meriden.