JOHN DEXTER FLINT (deceased), merchant, trader, philanthropist and churchman, of Fall River, was in many ways a most remarkable man, one that perhaps crowded more into his three-score years of active business life in the city of his adoption than any of his contemporaries; among the foremost leaders in business lines of those who wrought with him, he no doubt was first in generous gifts to religious and church work and lines akin to it. Born April 26, 1826, in the town of North Reading, Mass., Mr. Flint was a son of Henry and Mary (Sanborn) Flint, most estimable people but of limited means. The Flints were of good Puritan stock, the North Reading family descending from (I) Thomas Flint, who, with his brother William, was here in New England probably before 1642. William became a large land owner in the vicinity of Flint street, Salem, while Thomas was one of the first settlers in that part of Salem Village which became Danvers, buying land there as early as 1662.
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.
Among the most prominent law offices in southern Massachusetts is one which by lineal succession has existed for nearly, if not quite, a hundred years, and in which three generations of the Clifford family have been represented. The members of the Clifford family who have been such important factors in this old and prominent law firm came of a distinguished ancestry. The late John H. Clifford was a direct descendant in the eighth generation from George Clifford, who came with his wife Elizabeth and son John from Arnold village and parish, Nottinghamshire, England, to Boston in 1644.
Being a history of the descendants of Richard Dexter of Malden, Massachusetts, from the notes of John Haven Dexter and original researches. Richard Dexter, who was admitted an inhabitant of Boston (New England), Feb. 28, 1642, came from within ten miles of the town of Slane, Co. Meath, Ireland, and belonged to a branch of that family of Dexter who were descendants of Richard de Excester, the Lord Justice of Ireland. He, with his wife Bridget, and three or more children, fled to England from the great Irish Massacre of the Protestants which commenced Oct. 27, 1641. When Richard Dexter and family left England and by what vessel, we are unable to state, but he could not have remained there long, as we know he was living at Boston prior to Feb. 28, 1642.
Alexander Bisset Munro was born 25 Dec. 1793 at Inverness, Scotland to Donald and Janet (Bisset) Munro. Alexander left Scotland at the age of 14, and lived in Dimecrana in the West Indies for 18 years. He owned a plantation, raising cotton, coffee and other produce. He brought produce to Boston Massachusetts on the ship of Solomon Dockendorff. To be sure he got his money, Solomon asked his to come home with him, where he met Solomon’s sister, Jane Dockendorff. Alexander went back to the West Indies, sold out, and moved to Round Pond, Maine, and married Jane. They had 14 children: Janet, Alexander, Margaret, Nancy, Jane, Mary, Solomon, Donald, John, William, Bettie, Edmund, Joseph and Lydia.
The next place and house was that of Francis Grant, who came from the Kennebec and married Mercy Gray, Sept. 2, 1812. He gained his livelihood by farming and fishing and the children were: Thomas, Moses, George, Lydia, Francis and Mercy. Mention is also made of Francis’ brother, Isaac.
Muster Roll of Captain James Clark’s Company of Light Infantry in the Detachment of drafted Militia of Maine, called into actual service “by the State, for the protection of its Northeastern Frontier, from the twentieth day of February, 1839, the time of its rendezvous at Bangor, Maine, to the eleventh day of May, 1839, when discharged or mustered.