Philip Sargent, a retired brick manufacturer of Allenstown and an ex-member of the New Hampshire legislature, was born in Allenstown, N.H., August 16, 1822, son of Sterling and Sally (Gault) Sargent. The Sargents are of English descent, and the origin of the family dates far back into the Middle Ages. Its history is directly traced, however, through eight generations to Richard Sargent, who is supposed to have been an officer in the Royal Navy of England. His son William came to America, and located in Ipswich, Mass., in 1633. From Ipswich he went to Newbury, Mass., and later to Hampton, N.H. He was a pioneer in the two last-named places, and was one of the first in each to receive land grants. He finally settled in that part of old Salisbury, Mass., which in 1668, as a separate town, received the name of Amesbury. His first wife was Judith Perkins, and his second was Elizabeth Perkins; and it is supposed that they were sisters. His sons were by his second union. William Sargent, Jr., the next in this line, was born in Amesbury, Mass., January 2, 1646. On September 23, 1668, he wedded Mary Colby, who was born September 19, 1647, daughter of Anthony Colby. Philip Sargent, son of William Sargent, second, was born in Amesbury, August 12, 1672. The maiden name of his wife was Mary Tewksbury, and she was also a native of Amesbury. It is supposed that several children were born of this union, but Jonathan is the only child of whom there is any record. Jonathan Sargent and his wife Jemima had two sons-Jonathan, Jr., and Sterling.
Sterling Sargent was born in Salisbury, Mass., May 25, 1731. When a young man he settled in Allenstown, N.H., where he followed agricultural pursuits during the active period of his life; and he lived to reach a good old age. He was three times married. By his union with Lydia Coffin, his first wife, he had five children, his son Philip being the youngest. His second wife, Mehitable Davis, with whom he was united September 24, 1785, was a native of Amesbury. His third wife, Mary Andrews, of Pembroke, N.H., whom he married on February 11, 1788, died in February, 1820.
Philip Sargent, first, son of Sterling Sargent and grandfather of the subject of this sketch, was born in Allenstown, March 21, 1765. He was a prosperous farmer and a lifelong resident of this town. On September 22, 1793, he married Sally Perrin, a native of Pembroke. The only child of this union was named Sterling. Philip Sargent, first, died February 21, 1820.
Sterling Sargent, second, was born in Allenstown, in 1794. He enlisted for service in the War of 1812, joining Captain Samuel Collins’s company in 1814, and serving in John Montgomery’s brigade, under General Nathaniel Fiske. He was a good musician, and is thought to have been commissioned a Drum Major. After his return from the army he engaged in the manufacturing of brick in Allenstown, and followed that business successfully for many years in connection with farming. He was one of the stirring business men and prominent citizens of his day, and as a stanch supporter of the Democratic party he took a leading part in public affairs. For a number of terms he was a member of the Board of Selectmen, and he represented this district in the legislature for eight years. He was well advanced in Masonry. Sterling Sargent died at his home in Allenstown at the age of seventy-four years. His wife, Sally Gault, whom he married December 29, 1814, was a daughter of Matthew Gault, of Hookset, N.H., who served as a soldier in the Revolutionary War. She became the mother of eleven children, and of these five are living, namely: Philip, the subject of this sketch; Mrs. Sally Hartwell; Mrs. W. F. Head; Warren Sargent; and Abbie, who is the wife of Nathaniel B. Emery, of Pembroke, N.H., and has two children-Frederick P. and Nathaniel B., Jr. Mrs. Sally Gault Sargent died at the age of sixty-seven years. Both parents were attendants of the Methodist Episcopal church.
Philip Sargent began his education in the common schools, and completed his studies at Pembroke Gymnasium. He assisted his father for a time, later becoming a partner in the business and being associated with him for a number of years. For a time he carried on a brick manufactory alone; and later, in partnership with his brother Warren, he conducted a thriving and profitable business for a period of thirty years. In 1891 he retired from active pursuits, and has since been enjoying a well-earned rest.
On December 31, 1849, Mr. Sargent was united in marriage with Phœbe A. Williams, daughter of Charles K. and Abbie (Emery) Williams. Mrs. Sargent is the mother of one daughter, Ellen F. Politically, Mr. Sargent is a Democrat. He has always been active in forwarding all measures conducive to public improvement, but has never aspired to any of the town offices. He was persuaded to accept the nomination for Representative to the legislature in 1878, and, being elected, served with ability for one term. Mr. and Mrs. Sargent attend the Methodist Episcopal church.