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John M. Cole, a well-known farmer and real estate speculator of Plainfield, was born here, August 3, 1836, son of Daniel and Lucinda (Bryant) Cole. The Cole family is of German origin. The great-grandfather of John M. was Ebenezer Cole. The grandfather, Daniel Cole, was one of the prosperous farmers of Plainfield in his day, and also followed the trades of tanning, currying, and shoemaking. He fought for independence in the Revolutionary War, taking part in thirteen engagements; and he received for his services a pension, which after his death was extended to his widow. He and his family came up the river upon a horse sled, and were among the pioneers of this section. At his death he was ninety years old. He married Edith Wilbur, and his family consisted of six children, all now deceased; namely, Stephen, Wheeler, Enos, John, Daniel, and Hannah. Stephen became a physician, and practised in Concord, N.H., for a number of years. He married in that town, and later settled in Vermont, where he passed the rest of his life. Wheeler went to Ohio, and became a prosperous farmer. He married in that State, and left a daughter. Enos married and settled in Burlington, Vt. John was in business in Lowell, Mass., and Nashua, N.H., Lucy Pike, of Concord, N.H. Hannah became the wife of Joseph Spaulding, an extensive farmer of Plainfield, and reared a family.
Daniel Cole, the father of John M., was born in Plainfield. He succeeded to the ownership of his father’s property, and during the active period of his life was engaged in general farming and stock-raising. He served as Overseer of the Poor and Highway Surveyor for a number of years, and was a Justice of the Peace. In politics he supported the Republican party, and his religious belief was the Baptist creed. He lived to be seventy-three years old, and left a good estate, together with a record for honesty and integrity, of which his descendants may well be proud. Daniel Cole was twice married. His first wife was Patty Johnson, who bore him six children; namely, Sarah, Martha, Abel, George, Harriet, and Daniel W. Sarah married Earl Westgate, a farmer of Plainfield, and had a family of six children. Martha wedded Alfred Hannis, a school teacher of Claremont, N.H., and reared a family. Abel, who engaged in farming, wedded Marcia Houghton, of Windsor, Vt. George, who followed agriculture successfully, married Samantha Souther, of Plainfield. Both are now deceased. Harriet is now the widow of Nathan Souther, late of Lowell, Vt. Daniel W. resided upon a farm in Cornish, and died in that town. He married Ardel Spencer, a native of Plainfield; and a daughter survives him. Daniel Cole’s second wife, Lucinda Bryant Cole, became the mother of five children-John M., Homer, Marcia, Wilbur, and one that died in infancy. Homer follows the trade of a painter and paper-hanger in Plainfield. He married Mrs. E. Harris, a widow of Windsor, who has had no children. Marcia, who is no longer living, married George Chase, of Windsor, a mason by trade; and she had two children. Wilbur, who is a prosperous farmer in Cornish, married Clara Hook, of that town, and has one son.
John M. Cole acquired a common-school education, and since early manhood has been engaged in farming. He succeeded to the homestead, where he continued to reside some five years after his father’s death. He then sold it to Charles Kenyon, and bought the Coburn place in Cornish. This property he sold to William Kinsman a year later, and purchased the Woodard farm in Plainfield. He had resided there about fifteen years, when he sold that property to William True, and bought the Jordan farm, located upon the River Road. After disposing of the Jordan place to Ralph Morgan some two years ago, he purchased the Burrage farm, where he now resides. His custom in these transactions was to improve the estate after buying it, and then to sell it at a good profit. He now owns a farm of one hundred acres, with substantial buildings, from which a view may be obtained of the Ascutney Mountains and the village of Hartland, Vt., upon the opposite shore of the Connecticut River. He has made a specialty of raising sheep and cattle, and he has been quite successful in general farming.
Mr. Cole married Jane Bugbee, who was born in Hartland, Vt., December 27, 1836, and was educated at the Kimball Union Academy. Her grandfather was a Revolutionary soldier. Her father, George Bugbee, who was born in Cornish, Vt., in 1813, and was a prosperous farmer in that town, died in 1882. He married Eunice Lanphire, who, born in Hartland, Vt., in 1803, died in 1869, her only child being Jane. Mr. and Mrs. Cole have four children, as follows: George A., born March 14, 1863; Daniel, born March 11, 1867; Samuel W., born March 18, 1868; and Lizzie J., born December 23, 1870. George A., who is engaged in agriculture in Plainfield, married Hattie Royce, and has two sons-Charlie and Leonard. Daniel is a resident of this town. Samuel W., who is a travelling salesman for a jewelry house, married Ida M. Jenkins, of Attleboro, Mass. Lizzie J. married Harley McCrillis, a confectioner of White River Junction, Vt.
Mr. Cole has served upon the School Board and in other town offices. Politically, he supports the Republican party, and in his religious views is a Baptist. He is well informed upon all current topics, and is especially interested in family history and the preservation of relics. He has in his possession several old deeds and mortgages. Among the deeds is one conveying property from Johnson to Cole, bearing the date of December 25, 1819. Another deed is from Walker to Daniel Cole, dated April 4, 1806. He also has the will of his grandfather, dated July 20, 1839, and probated by Judge Putnam, and the paper relating to his enlistment and his discharge from the Continental army.