Monday, January 31, 2011

¡Gracias Eduardo!

Josefa Rivero and Manuel Martín
photo taken before 1937
(Josefa died 11 November 1937)
Thank you, Eduardo, the mystery cousin for sending this photo of his (and my husband's) great grand parents, Josefa and Manuel, married 23 January 1904 in Villar de Ciervo, Salamanca, Spain. Eduardo kindly sent me a nice email with the family links to their common ancestor. The email has been flying back and forth across the Atlantic Ocean these past days, with lots of photos and information changing hands.

It is amazing how technology can inform and unite long lost families, separated by immigration and distance!

Please see my post from 29 January 2011

Manuel Martín was born about 1880 in Barcelona, and died 10 September 1971 in Villar de Ciervo, Salamanca, Spain. He was the son of Mateo Martín and Manuela Ventura.

Josefa Rivero was born 23 October 1884 in Villar de Ciervo, and died 17 November 1937 in Villar de Ciervo. She was the daughter of Manuel Rivero and Orofila Gonzalez. I was able to find her ancestors online at the new via the scanned and transcribed images of the church records from Villar de Ciervo.

                        4. Jose Ribero
              2. Manuel Rivero
                        5. Agapita Serradilla b. about 1800 in Guadapero
1. Josefa Rivero
                                     12. Ramon Gonzalez
                        6. Agustin Gonzalez, d. 1884
                                    13. Ynez Zamorreño
            3. Orofila Gonzalez
                                     14. Francisco Garcia b. abt 1776
                                                   d. 14 September 1852 Villar de Ciervo
                       7. Ana Maria Garcia
                                      15.  Inocencia Bentura d. bef. 1852

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Mary Dominis from Boston - Amanuensis Monday

Washington Place
Mary Dominis's home in Honolulu
built by her husband, Captain John Dominis in 1846
Mary Lambert Jones, born 3 August 1803 in Boston, died 25 April 1889 in Honolulu; married on 9 October 1824 at the 2nd Baptist Church in Boston to Captain John Dominis of Trieste, now Slovenia. They had three children, two daughters Mary Elizabeth and Frances Ann, and one son John Owen Dominis. Captain Dominis, his wife and son removed from Schenectady, New York to Hawaii in 1837 on board the ship Jones. Their two young daughters were left at boarding school.

In the articles below, it is mentioned that Mrs. Mary Dominis made a return trip to Boston. She was at that time, in 1841, visiting her daughters at school, but by the time she arrived in Schenectady both daughters had died of unknown causes (Mary died 9 May 1838, and Frances on 13 January 1842). I don't know if that was the cause of her trip or not. I do know that Mrs. Mary Dominis returned to Honolulu and never came back to America again. Her husband, Captain John Dominis, died on a voyage to China in 1846. Her son, Governor John Owen Dominis, married Lydia Kamekeha, who later became Queen Lili'uokalani.

Governor Dominis and his wife, then Princess, made a trip to Boston in 1887, on their way to Queen Victoria's Jubilee celebration in London. After she was widowed and removed from the throne, Queen Lili'uokalani returned to Boston in 1897, to visit the Jones family and cousins. Mary Lambert Jones was the sister to my 4x Great Grandmother, Catherine Plummer (Jones) Younger (1799 - 1828). There is no existing photograph or portrait of Mary Dominis.


The Hawaiian Gazette (Honolulu) 1865 -1918

April 26, 1887, page 8 Image 8
Permanent link:

“Editor Gazette- In the notices by your contempories of a reception to be held on the 23d inst., by the esteemed and venerable Mrs. Dominis, in commemoration of the semi-centennial of her arrival at the Islands, in the bark Jones, I notice some errors which it may be worth while to correct.

It is stated that since that time she has not left the island. On the 3d day of December, 1841, she embarked on the Ship Wm. Gray, Capt. Stickney, for Boston. On the 18th, fifteen days out, at 2 o’clock a. m., it being a bright starlight night, the ship barely escaped being wrecked upon Pennryhn Island. She arrived at her destination April 28, 1842. Mrs. Dominis returned to Honolulu in the bark Behring, Capt. B. F. Snow, sailing from Boston Nov. 2d, 1842, and arriving at Honolulu March 17th, 1843.

Captain Dominis finally left the Islands in the brig Henry Neilson on the 5th day of August 1846, instead of 1848, as per Polynesian of Aug. 8, 1846.

The writer was a fellow passenger with Mrs. Dominis and her son by both the Gray and Behring – I also infer from the notices I have read, that the recent mission semi-centennial held here, is supposed by some to have been of the establishment of this mission, which is a mistake. It was a commemoration of the fiftieth arrival of the seventh and largest reinforcement of the mission. The pioneer missionaries of A.B.C.F.M. arrived here in March, 1820, sixty-seven years ago.

S. N. Castle
April 25, 1887”

And in the second column, same page

“Reception to a Worthy Lady

Saturday last was the fiftieth anniversary of the arrival at these Islands of Mrs. Mary Dominis, mother of the Lieutenant-General John O. Dominis, and the event was fittingly observed by her numerous friends. Mrs. Dominis has continued to reside here-with the exception of a visit to Boston, in December 1841, returning to the islands in March, 1843- since her first landing on the Islands. An interesting letter, partly in this connection from the pen of the Hon. S. N. Castle appears in this issue. At 8 o’clock a. m. the venerable lady was serenaded by the Hawaiian Band, which continued to discourse sweet music on the premises throughout the day. At half-past 2 o’clock Mrs. Dominis held a reception, which was continued until close on to 6 o’clock, and a constant stream of friends and visitors called to pay their respects and tender their congratulations to this much respected lady, who received them all graciously and made them all welcome. A large number of the leading citizens of Honolulu were present, among whom were noticed Hon. A. S. Cleghorn and the Princess Ka’iulani, also the members of the Diplomatic and Consular corps. During the afternoon light refreshments were served to all present. “

To see more stories about the Jones, Dominis and Hawaiian royal family, please click on the surnames or HAWAII or LILIUOKALANI in the keywords listed in the right hand column of this blog.
Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Eduardo Zato por favor!

Hola, Eduardo!

Mi esposo es el nieto de María Consuelo Martín y José Garcia Rivero. Vivimos en los E.E.U.U. y yo soy la autora de este blog. Recibí tu commentario que hicistes anonimamente en el articulo de las tres hermanas Martin. Se que eres el nieto de María Joaquina, y hijo de Gerardo en Barcelona.

Por favor, mandame un email a Me gustaria mucho comunicarme contigo y saber más de la familia. Hemos visitado a la familia en Madrid y Villar de Ciervo varias veces pero a Barcelona solo hemos ido una vez, antes de las Olimpiadas en 1992.

Hello Eduardo,

My husband is the grandson of Maria Consuelo Martin y Jose Garcia Rivero. We live in the United States and I am the author of this blog. I received the comment you made anonymously on the post about the three Martin sisters. I know that you are the grandson of Maria Joaquina, son of Gerardo in Barcelona.

Please reply to my email at We would love to communicate with you, and learn about your branch of the family. We have visited the family in Madrid and Villar de Ciervo often, but we visited Barcelona only one time, before the 1992 Olympics.

Last week I was looking at the statistics for my blog, and I noticed many hits on several old posts about my husband’s family in Spain. In the search terms for I noticed that someone was searching for the name “Nicanor Zato”, who was my husband’s great uncle who had passed away in 1993. For several days someone searched for this name. My husband was laughing at me because I was talking to the computer, “Who are you? Leave a message!”

Well, finally, two days ago, someone left a message. It is my husband’s second cousin in Spain. Someone we have never met. But they chose to leave it as “Anonymous” so I have no way of returning the message. Thus, this blog post. I hope it catches his eye, and we hear again from him very soon!

Generation 1. Mateo Martín y Manuel Ventura
Generation 2. Manuel Martín y Josefa Rivero; m. 23 January 1904 in Villar de Ciervo, Salamanca, Spain
Four Children born in Villar de Ciervo:
1. Maria Joaquina Martín b. 21 December 1904, d. 25 October 1989 Madrid, m. Nicanor Zato
2. Nicolás Martín m. Inés Rodriguez Moreno
3. Luisa Antonia Martín b. 13 June 1906, d. 4 March 2004 Madrid, m. Joaquín Garcia Rivero
4. María Consuelo Martín b. 11 November 1908, d. 29 April 2001 m. Jose Garcia Rivero

The blog post about the Martin sisters was posted on 25 August 2010, and can be seen at this link:

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Friday, January 28, 2011

House built in 1676 by William Woodbury

This report was prepared by the Beverly Historical Society in 1970 for my Great Aunt Janet Wilkinson Blades's house on 111 Essex Street in Beverly, Massachusetts. In 1968 her home was sold when she removed to an apartment for elderly residents in another section of Beverly. Janet Wilkinson was born 14 June 1898 in Salem, and died 6 October 1981 in Beverly. She married William John Blades in 1927. He was born 14 June 1894 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and died in 1963 in Beverly. They had no children.

The William Woodbury House
photographed in 2010
Auntie Janet and Uncle Bill bought the house in 1927 from Janet's Aunt Georgia and Uncle Charles H. Marshall, who had previously bought it from his brother, Francis Marshall. It was originally built by William Woodbury and his wife Hannah Haskell, son of Humphrey Woodbury, who was born 1609 in Buddleigh, Devonshire, England and died 11 October 1686 in Beverly. Two of Humphrey's other sons are my 9x Great Grandfathers, Isaac and Humphrey, Jr. Our family has a long history in Beverly! Humphrey's father, John Woodbury, had been granted 200 acres of land in Beverly on 25 January 1635/6.

Inside the William Woodbury House
photograph from a MLS listing
when the house was up for resale
I was born in Beverly, and I was very small when Aunt Janet lived in this house, built in 1675. I remember it was in the old style with very low ceilings and a fireplace big enough to stand in (remember, I was probably in kindergarten!). According to family members, the house was full of antique furniture. Aunt Janet knew she was removing to a small apartment, and asked all the family if they would like any furniture. When no one offered to take the furniture, she had it piled up on the curb to be carted away. Someone told my uncle that it was on the curb, but by the time he and Dad ran over to see what was happening, it had all been taken away by pickers. I can only imagine what that antique furniture would be worth today!

111 Essex Street
Research by Beverly C. Carlman, May 1970
Beverly Historical Society

In 1628, Humphrey Woodberry accompanied his father, John, back to Naumkeag aboard the “Abigail.” It was a momentous trip for the young man who had completed his education in England and for the Massachusetts Colony. Captain John Endicott was also aboard with a rather lengthy letter of instructions for the duties he was about to assume. The efforts of these first settlers are well recorded by history, but Humphrey Woodberry’s will, written in March 1685/6, is the record of his diligence and his children:

“To my loving wife Elizabeth my dwelling house and barne orchard homestead pasture and all my land and meadow adjoining.
To son Richard Woodberry eleven acres and his mothers part after her death.
To son Thomas the lott whereon his house now standeth
To son John that same 40 acre lott which my son now dwelleth upon
To son Isaac the lott of mine which he now dwells upon
To son William other half of middle pasture on the south with the homelott whereupon said William’s house standeth adjoining with my orchard, on the SE by land of John Solace one corner reaching to the land of Mr. Hale.
To son Humphrey my ten acre lot which is now let out to John Drinker
To daughter Susanna Tenny all my land at Bradford that I bought for her
To Daughter Christian, wife of John Trask my two acres of meadow near Longham adjoining eastward to the meadow that was Capt. Lawthrops
To daughter Elizabeth, wife of John Walker 10 shillings having given her portion already
To grandchildren Sarah and Eunice Walker a certain house of mine now rented by Humphrey Horrel.”

His son William had married Hannah (Dodge) Haskell November 20, 1676 and it is probably safe to assume that he built his house at about this time. At his death, his probate was entered February 15, 1711 and his widow Hannah was given the “East room in the dwelling, the west chamber and one-half of the cellar with liberty of the ovens in the other room and her son in law Isaac Gray who purchased ye most of ye real estate shall pay her and provide suitable horse to ride to meeting or elsewhere. He to have ye house, barn, and one-half pasture.”

On March 21, 1759, Isaac and Martha Gray of Beverly husbandman sold “for love and goodwill to my son Isaac Gray, Jr. of Beverly weaver --- my old dwelling house being the same my said son lives in together with land whereon said house standeth also free liberty to use the spring also the right to pass to and from said house to the highway.”

On April 19, 1760 Isaac Gray of Beverly weaver sold to Robert Morgan and John Bond “my brothers in law the west end of the dwelling of my father next to the highway.”

The day before Robert Morgan and John Bond had released to Isaac Gray “all our 2/3 right in estate of Mr. Isaac Gray except the west of the dwelling and the right of our mother Rebeckah Gray.”

In 1763 John Bond and Robert Morgan sold to Thomas Symons of Beverly mariner “the west half of the dwelling of our honored father Isaac Gray.”

On November 30, 1770 Thomas, Mary Symonds mariner sold to Israel Johnson of Beverly fisherman “west half of dwelling and is the half that belonged to Isaac Gray deceased which I bought of Robert Morgan and John Bond.”

On February 9, 1778 Isaac, Abigail Gray of Beverly yeoman, Robert, Hannah Morgan of Spencer yeoman and Lydia Bond of Brimfield sold to William Morgan 2nd of Beverly labourer “east half of dwelling that was formerly our honored father Isaac Gray consisting of one lower room, chamber, and garret and cellar also one acre of land adjoining same.

Westerly on the highway

Southerly on the way to said Gray’s house six poles leaving said way one pole wide

Northerly down to the spring about 2’ westward of said spring 3 poles

Easterly toward Mr. Gray’s house

Southerly Gray’s land 9 poles 15 links

Northerly to Grover’s land 4 poles 17 links

Northerly on said land formerly Grovers 17 poles to the highway.”

In 1785 William Morgan 2nd came into possession of the rest of the house which he bought of Israel and Hannah Johnson mariner. “West half of a certain dwelling in Beverly and cellar and is the one half of the dwelling house that belonged to Thomas Simonds late of Beverly mariner.”

In 1804 William and Mary Morgan 2nd yeoman sold the same to Nathan Dane Esquire though now it was an estate of thirty acres we know that it included the parcel we’re concerned with for it was the same he bought for “Israel Johnson, Isaac Gray, Robert Morgan and others – all the land and buildings in my homeplace where I live.”

Nathan and Polly Dane evidently immediately sold it out to Peter Hill husbandman though the deed was not recorded in 1804 but in 1806. Dane gave Hill another deed “one acre more or less and a dwelling and other buildings thereon
NW by the highway
NE Josiah Woodberry
SE and SW my own
N by a land as wall stands being the same tenement with a small variation of bounds which I gave him by deed May 1804.” However even this was not recorded until 1845.

In 1845 the heirs of Peter Hill sold to Hugh Hill mariner the “remainder of estate. A certain dwelling and land adjoining:
W Essex Street 334’
S Richard Pickett 318’
E Richard Pickett 208’
N Hugh Hill 320’

In 1858 Hugh, Jane Hill yeoman of Beverly sold to Richard Pickett merchant “3 ¼ acres on Essex Street in Beverly with a dwelling house and other buildings – being the estate of Peter Hill.”

Richard Pickett, wood and coal dealer, sold the same to Charles Marshall of Hamilton in 1861 but reserved the right to “the owner of the small dwellings now upon the land to occupy and improve the spot of land until Sept. 15, 1865.”

In 1910 the Marshall heirs sold to Francis Marshall of Hamilton the land on “east side of Essex Street together with buildings thereon
N Essex Street 200’ 12,100 sq. ft.
E 60’
S Poor house farm 200’
W 62’“

In 1922 Francis Marshall sold the same to Charles H. Marshall with the same description.

In 1927 Charles H. and Georgia B. Marshall sold to Janet and William J. Blades “Essex Street Lot A” which was described as
“W Essex Street 84.25’

S land now or formerly Charles Marshall Lot B 65.04’
E John I. Marshall 87.73’
N John I. Marshall 54.78’ “ 111 Essex Street

In 1968 Janet Blades sold to Richard and Nancy Jones the same premises with the same description.

CONCLUSION By deed we can assume that the house now standing at 111 Essex Street is the same that was built by the son of Humphrey Woodberry before 1685. In later years it is interesting to note that three famous privateer Captains made it their home: Thomas Symonds, Israel Johnson, and William Morgan 2nd.

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, January 27, 2011

John Cragin, Scots Prisoner of War 1651 in Woburn, Massachusetts

After the heavy snows of the previous week, this weekend perfect for a drive in the countryside. One of our favorite rides is to the Frye Measure Mill in Wilton, New Hampshire. Since the weather had been bad, I Googled the website for the Frye Measure Mill, and found the schedule and directions, but then (of course!) I was sidetracked by the link labeled “history”. After clicking there, I became enthralled with the story of Daniel Cragin, the founder of the Mill. I was even more surprised to find his ancestor had been a 1651 passenger on board the “John and Sara”.
The Frye Measure Mill
in winter is absolutely beautiful!

I knew the sad story of the “John and Sara” because my own ancestor, William Munroe (1625 - 1718), was on board the same ship. It was full of prisoners of war, Scotsmen captured during the English Civil War, bound for Boston to be sold into servitude. It is one of the few ships of this era to have a fairly complete passenger list, because the human cargo was actually valuable merchandise. For this reason only, the proprietors made a list. Other ships of the era did not keep passenger lists.

wooden measures
According to the Frye Measure Mill website, and the Wilton, NH town history, John Cragin had small pox during the voyage, and was going to thrown overboard. A young English woman, Sarah Dawes, asked for his life to be spared. However, this is easily disproven by one look at the passenger list. There are no women on the list, and no English passengers. The truth is more interesting. Sarah Dawes was a servant to John Wyman in Woburn, and was with child with her second bastard child by another servant in the Wyman household, Daniel Mecrist. She was sentenced to twelve stripes in 1657. He could not marry her because he was already married to a woman he left behind in England. John Craggin married her in 1661, and took in her two illegitimate children, Mary and Benoni Mecrist.

In looking at my own family tree, I saw that John Cragin and Sarah Dawes had eight children, and two of the Cragin siblings married two Skelton siblings, grand children of my own ancestor Reverend Samuel Skelton (1593 – 1634) of Salem, Massachusetts. John Wyman (1621 – 1684), Sarah’s master in Woburn, Massachusetts, was the brother to my own ancestor, Francis Wyman (1617 – 1699). Another one of John Cragin’s daughters, Sarah, married Francis Nurse, Jr. (the son of Rebecca Towne Nurse, hung as a witch in 1692 Salem, her brother Edmund is my 10x great grandfather), my first cousin ten generations removed. There are many, many connections between my own family tree and John Cragin’s descendants.

The Cragin/Craggen/Craggin Family

Gen. 1. John Cragin, b. Scotland, died 27 October 1708 in Woburn, Massachusetts. He was captured at the Battle of Worcester in 1652 and sent to America as a prisoner of war on board the “John and Sarah” to be sold into servitude; married on 4 November 1661 to Sarah Dawes, at Woburn, Massachusetts. Eight Children.

Gen. 2. John Cragin, born 29 September 1677 at Woburn, Massachusetts; died 26 January 1703; filed an intention to marry Deborah Skelton on 13 April 1700. Three children.

Gen. 3. John Cragin, born 25 Mar 1701; married Judith Barker of Concord, Massachusetts settled in the part of Concord which is now Acton, Massachusetts, and then removed to Temple, New Hampshire. Nine children.

Gen. 4. Francis Cragin, born in Acton; married Sibyl Piper. Ten children.

Gen. 5. Captain Francis Cragin, born 24 October 1773; married Sarah Cummings,

Gen. 6. Augustus Cragin born 19 July 1802; died 21 June 1886; married on 14 December 1830 to Almira Boynton, born 5 December 1807, and died 30 October 1883. . Removed to Temple, New Hampshire from Merrimac, about 1837. Ten children.

Gen. 7. Daniel Cragin, born 31 December 1836 in Merrimac; married 20 March 1859 to Jane L. Dolliver, daughter of John Dolliver and Lucetta Draper of Lyndeborough. Was apprenticed at age 17 to John Newell, cabinet maker, of Lyndeborough, New Hampshire. He was engaged in a furniture shop in Wilton three years later. Then he returned to Lyndeborough, with a partner, and purchased John Newell’s business in 1858. In 1876 he began the manufacture of dry measures at his own mill.

Frye's Measure Mill
Wilton, New Hampshire
Frye’s Measure Mill, in Wilton, is on the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance’s 2008 list of “Seven to Save”, among the most endangered Granite State properties. It dates back to a time when mills were made of wood, not brick like those in Manchester, and located along the streams and small rivers of backwoods New Hampshire, not just along the mighty Merrimack. Local manufacturing and locally made products were the backbone of the American economy in the 1800’s. Frye’s Measure Mill has been run by only three families over the years, Cragin, Frye and Savage. There is still a continuing battle to maintain the mill, dam, ponds and outbuildings. In 1982 the Measure Mill was accepted to the National Register of Historic Places.

Built in 1878 by Daniel Cragin, the Frye Mill still produces wooden ware measures, similar to Shaker style boxes also produced there. Using an elaborate system of wooden cogs and leather belts, the energy produced from a small waterfall turns the lathes and machinery that cuts, shapes and shaves the wooden containers that become “measures.” Measures were made in sizes from a dry cup to a quart, and each can be considered a small work of art. The shaker boxes and measures are still made of native maple, hand bent around wooden molds and fastened with copper tacks.

Frye’s Measure mill is one of the few waterpowered mills still operational, and the only measure mill still operating in the United States. Woodenware produced at Frye’s is still made by the mostly water powered equipment. It is located on 12 Frye Mill Road in Wilton, New Hampshire

There is a small display of historical information
about the Mill inside the gift shop, including
information on the Cragin, Frye and Savage families
For more information on the Cragin family or Frye’s Measure Mill:

History of the town of Wilton, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, by Abiel Abbot Livermore and Sewall Putnam, Lowell, Massachusetts: Marden & Rowell, Printers, 1888 (the Cragin Genealogy is on page 353)

The American Genealogist, Volume 15 (1838-9), page 218- 220

Woburn Massachusetts Vital Records

History of Woburn, Massachusetts, by Samuel Sewall, Boston: Wiggin & Lunt, 1868

"Francis and Sarah Graggen Nurse of Reading Massachusetts; with notes on John and Sarah Dawes Craggen of Woburn, Massachusetts and Benoni MacKrest of Salisbury, Massachusetts", by Barbara J. Matthews, The American Genealogist, 1994, Volume 69, pages 81 - 85.

websites:  the passenger list for the “John and Sara” which left London 11 November 1651. the website for Frye’s Measure Mill, Wilton, New Hampshire with historical data, how to book tours of the mill, and shop information

Disclosure:  I have not been compensated in any way by the owners and proprietors of Frye's Measure Mill


To Cite/Link to this blog post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "John Cragin, Scots Prisoner of War 1651 in Woburn, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted January 27, 2011, ( accessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Flint Family of Lyme, NH - Not so Wordless Wednesday

Five generations of the Moses Flint Family resided or were born here in this house in Lyme, New Hampshire.

The Flint Homestead on Flint Road
Lyme, New Hampshire 1890s
Built by Moses Flint (1769-1843) about 1794
pictured are the family of George Flint (1805 -1878), his son

The Flint Homestead, 1913
the wife and daughters of Walter Moses
grandson of George Flint

The Flint Homestead, 2003
The husband and children of Dorothy Uicker Winger,
the granddaughter of the youngest child in the above photo.
They were just visiting.  The house was sold when Walter Moses Flint died in 1957.

Gen. 1. Moses Flint m. Elizabeth Spaulding
Gen. 2. George Flint m. J. Newhall
Gen. 3. Moses Lyman Flint m. Mary Abbie Richards
Gen. 4. Walter Moses Flint m. Elizabeth E. Marston
Gen. 5. Elizabeth J. Flint m. John Joseph Uicker
Gen. 6. John Joseph Uicker, Jr.  m. Ann Schumacher (Dorothy's parents)

There is an article in the Manchester Union Leader newspaper, dated 16 November 1903, about the Lyme house being in the Flint family for 100 years.

Thanks to my readers Dorothy Uicker Winger and her uncle, Tom Uicker, for the information and photos.

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Snellings at Copp's Hill Burial Ground, Boston - Tombstone Tuesday

Three graves from one family, all have the familiar winged skull, 
but each image is slightly different in style

Nathl. Snelling
Son of Mr. Joseph
and Mrs Priscilla
Snelling Died May
26th 1745 Aged 8
Months and 19 Days

In Memory of
Widow of
Who departed this Life
April 2d 1791

Here lyes Buried Ye Body
Dautr. of Mr. JOSEPH and
Who departed this life
Janry. the 30th 1766
Aged 20 Years

For more information on Copp's Hill Burial Ground please see the book Boston's Copp's Hill Burying Ground Guide, by Charles Chauncy Wells, Oak Park, Illinois:  Chauncey Park Press, 1998.  There are many more Snelling graves and Snelling tombs at this cemetery, also listed in the book.  There is even a Snelling Street about one block away.
Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, January 24, 2011

How to set your “Favorites” on the NEHGS search site

There has been an ongoing discussion about the “new” NEHGS website at Actually, this website is no longer new, since it has been around since late last summer. The way things move so quickly with technology, I wouldn’t be surprised to see additional changes by now at the NEHGS site after six months. Most of the genealogists involved with this discussion on Facebook seem resigned to learning and liking the new ways of searching the old familiar NEHGS data bases. These are the same people who see Facebook changing every year, too.

What many people don’t realize is that the new search can be customized. This is a new feature I’ve found invaluable. I learned about it back in the August by posting a plea at the NEHGS fan group. It was immediately answered by Ryan Woods and Judy Lucy. (I love how it is possible to receive personal advice from some of the best NEHGS experts at this group!) I saved Ryan’s email reply, and I’ll pass along his hints here! My favorite database is the Massachusetts Vital Records 1841- 1910. In order to set this as a favorite, you need to follow Ryan’s directions.

When you click on “Advanced Search” you can see that there is a little box above the “Database” field labeled “Favorites only”. When you check this box, it will bring up your favorite or favorites for searching, but only if you have set your profile to remember any favorites.

To set your favorite search data base, in my case, the Mass VRs 1841 – 1910, click on “my profile” at the top of any page. Under the box for “Favorite Databases” you can click on the down arrow and highlight any database (in my case the Mass VR 1841- 1910) and then click the “Add” button. Your selected database (or databases if you select more than one) will show up as a list in the box below.

From now on, when you use the Advanced Search, any you select the box “Favorites only” you search will be limited to just your one or more selected databases. You can do a comprehensive search of those selections simultaneously. This would require three separate searches on the old website.

Please take a look at this help page for more information: and scroll down to “My Profile Page” and “Advanced Search Page Tips”.

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

King Kalakaua in Boston, 1875- Amanuensis Monday

King Kalakua
This statue is located in Waikiki
 I had a surprise the other day when I saw a mention of King Kalakaua visiting Boston on one of his many tours of the United States. I knew he loved travel, and he had a grand trip around the world in 1881. His sister, Queen Lili’uokalani visited Boston twice. The first time was with Queen Kapi’olani on their way to Queen Victoria’s Jubilee in 1887. Her second visit to Boston was when she arrived in January 1896, recently deposed, and on her way to consult with President McKinley about the overthrow of the Hawaiian Kingdom.

I had bought Ralph Kuykendall’s three volume History of The Hawaiian Kingdom in the gift shop at Iolani Palace last summer. It is an enormous work, so I’ve just been using it as a reference. Perhaps I should read the entire thing someday, because there are so many fascinating things I’ve found inside! I was curious. What was Kalakaua doing in Boston? With whom did he visit and socialize? Did he visit with his sister’s family? Members of the “Hawaii Club” of Boston? I'll be looking into this mystery in the next few weeks.

The New York Times, published 4 January 1875, found at Google News Search



Special Dispatch to the New-York Times

BOSTON, Dec. 3.- The King of the Sandwiches
spent a quiet Sunday. This forenoon he attended
service at the Park Street Church, at the invitation
of Hon. Alpheus Hardy, who gave him the mis-
sionary reception, and listed to a sermon by
Rev. George L. Walker D.D., who alluded to the
King’s presence in the prayer, wherein he prayed
that the favor of the Lord might be upon
him and his people. In the afternoon and
evening the King lounged about his
apartments, declining all invitations to go
out, and even to take a sleigh ride on the mill-dam,
but Gov. Kapena, Alderman Clark, Col. Shepard and
Lieut. Palmer took a brisk trip over the course.
To-morrow the King will be hurried about at a
lively pace. In the morning he rides withersoever
the city committee choose. In the afternoon he will
receive the officers of the army and navy at present
in this vicinity, and in the evening will attend the
opening of opera bouffe at the Globe Theater. The
next day he visits the public schools, meets the
merchants of the city in the rooms of the Board of
Trade, goes to see Lotta at the Boston Theatre in
the evening, and the next day he goes to Lowell
and St. Johnsbury, Vt. This is the programme
as at present arranged. It may be changed,
the trip to Lowell being set down for Tuesday instead
of Wednesday.”
Did you know that King Kalakaua was the first monarch to attend a state dinner at the White House? See the story at Time Magazine article, January 19, 2011 "King Kalakaua Goes to Washington, 1874",28804,2043087_2043088_2043115,00.html


Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Friday, January 21, 2011

Follow Friday - More Genea Angel Awards

I have had two close encounters with Genea Angels this week, and I want to recognize both. I had been under weather last week, and getting frustrated on line when the first angel one came to my rescue. The other one swooped in to help me out when I was staying up late, trying to catch up on my blog posts. Two frustrated comments left on Facebook, and then two blogger friends named Carol jumped in to save me!

First, last week I was on line looking in to the ancestry of my daughter’s boyfriend. We had met his parents last month, and his Dad asked me to see what he could find on his immigrant ancestor. This particular ancestor arrived in Boston from Italy in 1880, and was a real stretch for me to research. I have very few immigrant ancestors after 1650, and no experience with Italian genealogy. But I found him in the censuses and vital records, even though every record has his name spelled a different way. I was very excited to find him in several early Boston newspapers (with a completely new spelling!) found via Google News Search. However, I could find no way to print or save the images.

I had put my complaint on the discussion wall at Facebook for the group “Genealogy Bloggers”. To my rescue came Carol Yates Wilkerson from the blog “iPentimento”. (Go there and ask to be part of the group. You have to ask to be invited, but it is well worth it!) I had 22 responses, but Carol stuck with me online as we tried to figure out the problem. Not only did she put her suggestions on the wall, but we emailed privately, too. She snagged the photo using “SnagIt”, put it into a word file and emailed it back to me. Apparently, unless you use software such as “SnagIt” or perhaps the printscreen button there is no way to capture these old newspaper images. I’m looking into buying my own copy of “SnagIt” ASAP!

Secondly, last night I was burning the midnight oil to finish up today’s post. Suddenly I got the message that I could not upload anymore images to my Blogger based blog because my 1024 MB of space had been used up! Panic ensued. This was Wordless Wednesday and I needed my photos. I posted my frustration on my Facebook wall, and Carol A. Bowen Stevens from the blog “Reflections from the Fence” jumped in to action. Many friends put in their 2 cents of advice, but Carol began to send me private messages with solid advice, and she held my hand online and virtually guided me through the process. By the next morning I not only understood the problem, but I was on the way to resolving it.

I had been blithely blogging along not understanding how the Blogger platform was working. All photos were going in a Picasa file limited to 1024 MB. I was taking photos digitally at 5 megapixels and popping them into my posts, which almost always feature one, two, three or more photos! After a year and half it was completely full at 808 photos. There were several solutions. I could pay for extra space on Picasa. I could use Flikr or Photobucket or another similar photo storage in the cloud. But I had to resolve my large file issues, and reduce the photo sizes at least on future posts or I would run into the same problem again.

Carol patiently walked me through understanding all this. I also learned how to downsize my photos first, and how to choose a link for a photo from another storage website, and how to copy the link into my blog. This was all new to me, and probably is getting snide guffaws of laughter from the more technically inclined geeks out there in Bloggerland. I also learned about the editing program “Picnik” which resides inside “Picasa” to reduce the size of the photos currently stored there.

Thank you Carol S. and Carol W.! You deserve golden halos this week!

Please visit the Carols blogs!

Carol Yates Wilkerson

Carol A. Bowen Stevens


Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, January 20, 2011

50 Years Ago Today - A bit of NH Trivia


This information was sent to me by my friend Dean Dexter, Governor of the New Hampshire Mayflower Society, and author of the blog "New Hampshire Commentary"

New Hampshire U.S. Senator and former governor Styles Bridges, the senior Republican in the senate, escorts the incoming first lady to her husband's inaugeration, with outgoing First Lady Mamie Dowd Eisenhower, The White House, January 20, 1961. Archives Life magazine.

This was the Kennedy inauguration. There is a traditional "coffee" at the White House with the in-coming and out-going presidents, just before the inaugural ceremony at the Capitol. Senator Styles Bridges was the top ranking Republican in the U. S. Senate at the time, and on the inaugural committee. He was President Pro-Tem of the senate when the Republicans were in the senate majority in 1952, and chaired by Eisenhower Inagural Committees.

Dean Dexter's page about Styles Bridges is at this link:

eBay Treasures- for Treasure Chest Thursday

The following are things I saw on eBay.  Some have to do with family history, some with local history, and other are just curiosities.  A few of these items I even bid on, but in general I just watch the numbers go up past my limit.  I posted a story last week that was prompted by a postcard seen on eBay.   The idea to search for local history on eBay came from Portsmouth historian J. Dennis Robinson at the blog.   You can catch his last post about eBay at this link
I always check the latest prices on the silver souvenir spoons made by Daniel Low Jeweler’s of Salem. They invented the whole phenomenon of souvenir spoons back in 1892 when they came out with a spoon with a witch figure on it for the tourists. It was the 200th anniversary of the 1692 witch trials in Salem. I remember the Low’s shop, even though I’m not old enough to be an antique. My grandmother, who was born in Salem, collected spoons. (What happened to her spoon collection?) I don’t think she had any spoons worth this much! Most spoons of this type go for $100 - $200 on eBay, but for much less in local antique shops. I would like to have one of these spoons as a reminder of my family heritage, but I’m not paying that much!

Londonderry Lithia Water advertising usually goes for $20 to $50 a page ripped from magazines. This infuriates me because of the destruction to the magazines and ephemera. This destruction happens not just for Londonderry Lithia Water, but for all sorts of old advertising. Very sad.

Ever since the Old Man of the Mountain rock formation fell from Cannon Mountain in 2003 I have been fascinated with old souvenirs with his image.  I saw a great collection of this stuff at the New Hampshire Historical Society Museum in Concord about five years ago and there is a great display at the ranger station/information center in Lincoln, New Hampshire off Route 93, at the head of the Kancamaugus Trail Scenic Byway.  This stuff on eBay is a riot, and very overpriced.  I’ve got the Old Man on my license plate, on a quarter, and a magnet on the fridge.  That will have to do until I win the lottery.
Next, on eBay I sometimes search for family names, because I have several that are quite rare and unique. If they show up, sometimes it is due to a family connection. Sometimes, things show up that are just funny or interesting. For example, here are some British beer coasters labeled with the name Hitchings, which was my maternal grandmother’s maiden name. This would be fun to have or to find for a dollar at a yard sale. A four pack of these cardboard coasters were going for more than $20 the last time I checked on eBay. Fun to have, but not so funny to pay that much for a paper beer coaster!

Genealogy books, town histories, and local records appear occasionally on eBay. Sometimes they are reprints, sometimes originals, and usually as scanned books on CD. Beware! Read the fine print. If you are lucky you might find a family bible.  Here is another bit of local Londonderry history that surprised me.  I never thought boats took tourists for rides on Kendall Pond!

As you can see, I do a lot of looking, but rarely purchase anything on eBay. 
Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wordless Wednesday- The Derry History Museum

A visit to the Derry History Museum is a trip down memory lane....

Militaria from all the wars, from the
American Revolution on up to the present
At the Derry History Museum you can view everything from pre-contact Indian canoes and artifacts rescued from under Beaver Lake, to items astronaut Alan Shepard carried into space.   It was established in 1976 by the Historical Society to celebrate the Bicentennial.  Today it is located in the basement of the Adams Opera House on Broadway.  The shoe factories, the winter festivals, the colonial heroes (Stark, Thornton, Rogers)and the Scots-Irish settlers all left many items of interest for visitors.

Derry's home town astronaut hero
Alan Shepard
has his own room of memorablia

Derry was home to the cows of
H.P. Hood's Dairy

Derry History Museum
29 West Broadway
Derry NH 03038

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Tombstone Tuesday - Friends of Forest Hill Cemetery

Forest Hill Cemetery
and the First Parish Church, Derry
The Forest Hill Cemetery dates to 1722, soon after the settlement of Nutfield, New Hampshire. The “First Settlers” and their descendants are buried on the main road, by the main entrance behind the First Parish Church, on “First Settler’s Street.” If you stroll down this path in the cemetery, the stones marking the oldest graves are generally grouped behind the wrought iron fence marking the historic area. There is even a stone memorial with a map showing the route of the first Scots-Irish Presbyterians from Northern Ireland to New England. Londonderry residents will recognize the names on the nearby stones: MacGregor, Mack, Taylor, Morrison, etc.

The Friends of Forest Hill Cemetery is headed by Dorothy Goldman. The group was founded to preserve and restore Derry’s only cemetery. Many of Londonderry’s first settlers, ministers and characters can be found here, due to our common Nutfield heritage. The cemetery is also home to two funny epitaphs that can be found in Ripley’s Believe it or Not, and veterans of all the American Wars, including a recipient of the Medal of Honor.

Volunteers have been taking workshops, cleaning, reset and straightening the ancient gravestones at Forest Hill. This is a delicate process, but all types of local citizens have been involved, including Boy and Girl Scouts, teens from the Upper Room, and history buffs. The goal is to restore the cemetery to its former glory, making all the stones as restored as possible for families, genealogists, historians and the general public to enjoy. At the latest workshop in June, funded by the Derry Heritage Commission, volunteers cleaned 12 stones, straightened two and reset two.

Dorothy is part of an ongoing projects to photograph, map and catalog every gravestone in the Forest Hill Cemetery, and you can follow the progress of this on the website “Find a Grave” at She has added over 4,400 memorials to this website, from Forest Hills and other local cemeteries. See the Friends of Forest Hill Cemetery website for more information, and to contact Dorothy Goldman, for a tour or especially for donations of supplies and your time and labor.

Monetary Donations may be made to:
Derry Heritage Commission (put cemetery restoration in the memo line)

Mail to:
Friends of Forest Hill Cemetery
c/o D. J. Goldman
P.O. Box 36
East Derry, NH 03041

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, January 17, 2011

Robert Dinsmore, the Farmer Poet of Windham, NH

Londonderry, New Hampshire in Winter
Robert Dinsmore (AKA Dinsmoor) was known as the “Rustic Bard.” He was the great grandson of James McKeen and John Dinsmoor, two Scotsman who had emigrated from Northern Ireland to New Hampshire. Dinsmore’s poetry is full of Scots phrases and vocabulary, which shows how rich the Scots-Irish culture was in this part of New Hampshire, even during his lifetime. Like the Scots Irish music and dancing, which still remain today, the people of Nutfield were still using this dialect 100 years after coming to New England.

Robert Dinsmore is so unknown today there is not even an entry for him on Wikipedia, which has entries for all sorts of esoterica. He was born in the part of Londonderry, New Hampshire which is now Windham on 7 October 1757, and was a soldier at the capture of Burgoyne at the battle of Saratoga in 1777. He was a favorite poet of John Greenleaf Whittier, who lived down the road in Haverhill, Massachusetts (if you follow Rt. 97 across the border). Whittier wrote a chapter to Dinsmore in his book Old Portraits and Modern Sketches: Personal Sketches and Tributes: Historical Papers, which was a seven volume work published in 1866. Whittier compared him to Robert Burns. He wrote that Dinsmore must “be himself what he sings,--part and parcel of the rural life of New England,--one who has grown strong amidst its healthful influences, familiar with all its details, and capable of detecting whatever of beauty, humor, or pathos pertain to it…”

Robert Dinsmore published a book in 1828 in Haverhill, called Incidental Poems. He lived the life of a farmer and died in Windham on 16 March 1836. His brother, Samuel Dinsmoor (1776 – 1835), graduated from Dartmouth College and was governor of New Hampshire in 1831 for two years. Samuel Dinsmoor, Jr. (1799 – 1869), his son, was also a Dartmouth graduate, and served as governor for two terms in 1849 and 1851. Another grandson was Charles Dinsmoor (1834 – 1904), an inventor and lawyer from Pennsylvania, who helped to develop the modern farm tractor.

The Braes of Glenniffer
By Robert Dinsmoor (1757–1836)

Keen blaws the wind o’er the braes o’ Glenniffer,
The auld castle turrets are cover’d wi’ snaw!
How changed sin’ the time that I met wi’ my lover,
Amang the green bushes by Stantley green shaw!

The wild flowers o’ simmer were springing sae bonny,
The mavis sang sweet frae the green birken tree!
But far to the camp they hae march’d my dear Jonnie,
An’ now it is winter wi’ nature an’ me.

Then ilk thing around us was blithsome an’ cheerie,
Then ilk thing around us was bonnie an’ braw;
Now naething is heard but the wind whistling dreary,
Now naething is seen but the wide spreading snaw.

The trees are a’ bare, an’ the birds mute an’ dowie,
They shake the cauld drift frae their wings as they flee;
They chirp out their plaints seeming wae for my Jonnie,
’T is winter wi’ them, an’ its winter wi’ me.

Yon cauld sleety cloud as it skiffs the bleak mountain,
An’ shakes the dark firs on its stey rocky brae,
While down the deep glen bawls the snaw-flooded fountain,
That murmur’d sae sweet to my laddie an’ me.

’T is na the loud roar o’ the wintry wind swallowin,
’Tis na the cauld blast brings the tear i’ my e’e;
For O gin I saw but my bonnie Scot’s callan.
The dark days o’ winter were simmer to me.

From Specimens of American Poetry: With Critical and Biographical Notices in Three Volumes, by Samuel Kettell, Boston: S. G. Goodrich & Co., 1829


To Cite/Link to this post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Robert Dinsmore, the Farmer Poet of Windham, NH", Nutfield Genealogy, posted January 17, 2011, ( accessed [access date]). 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

J. A. Koso's Mace Genealogy Project

J. A. Koso is a distant cousin and has authored a website on the New England Mace Family. He has been researching the descendants of Robert Mace of Gosport (c 1652 - c 1733) from the Isles of Shoals off New Hampshire and Maine, for about three decades.

The project has many lines charted to the 20th Century. Many branches traced throughout the United States. The website also has links for the sharing of Mace family photos:

If you have a Mace in your family, J. A. Koso would like to hear from you. He has been working on a manuscript, and collecting Mace family information. The Genealogy of the Descendants of Robert Mace of Gosport, New Hampshire is in the process of being compiled for publication in both book and CD-ROM.

Here is an excerpt of J. A. Koso's manuscript on the Mace Family Tree:

43. ANDREW4 MACE (Richard3, Andrew2, Robert1) was baptized Hampton, New Hampshire, 25 December 1757,[1 ] and died Readfield, Maine, 6 April 1845.[ 2] He married (1) East Kingston, New Hampshire, 15 March 1779, JANE HALE.[ 3] She was born [town], New Hampshire, around 1756, and died Readfield, Maine, 11 September 1794, at age 38 years.[4 ] She is possibly the daughter of Eliphalet and Elizabeth (-----) Hale who was born Exeter, New Hampshire, 9 May 1751.[ 5] He published for marriage(2) Readfield, Maine, November 27, 1795 and certificate issued Readfield, Maine, December 15, 1795, SARAH/SALLY BROWN. She was born Readfield, Maine, 5 September 1768, and died there, 27 March 1845, at age 77 years.[ 6]

Revolutionary War Service: Private in Captain Ezra Currier's company of Colonel Abraham Drake's Regiment of New Hampshire militia raised to re-inforce the Continental Army near Stillwater September 1777. Served from 8 September 1777 to 16 December 1777 (3 months, 8 days). Corporal in Captain John Eastman's Company of Colonel Thomas Bartlett's Regiment of militia raised by New Hampshire for defense of West Point 1780. Served from 7 July 1780 to 24 October 1780 (3 months, 17 days).[7 ]

He served as sergeant in Capt. Quinby's New Hampshire Company in the Revolutionary War.[8 ]

“Chapter 86: Resolve on the petition of Andrew Mace, Granting him a pension for the loss of his hands while performing military duty. On the Petition of Andrew Mace of Readfield, praying for Relief from Government, for himself, and his family, under the Distressing Misfortune of losing both his Hands, by the discharge of a piece of Artillery, while performing Military duty under the Orders of his Commanding Officer, on the first Tuesday of May - 1804.

Resolved for Reason set forth in said Petition, that there be allowed and paid out of the Treasury of this Commonwealth to Andrew Mace, the sum of twelve dollars a month from the time he received his wounds to the present day, and hereafter the same sum pr. month to be paid him semiannually untill the further order of the General Court.

And be it further Resolved that there be paid to the said Andrew Mace from Treasury of this Commonwealth, the sume of one hundred and fifty dollars, as Compensation for his expense and Suffering, while under the Care of his Phisicians February 15, 1806.”[ 9]

He is listed as a Defendant in an Ejectment Cause in June of 1802 in Readfield.[ 10]

They resided in District 1 - East Readfield where they were members of the East Readfield Methodist Society and appeared on the Readfield Voters List.[11 ]

Children of Andrew Mace and Jane Hale born East Kingston, New Hampshire[12 ]:

i Polly5 Mace, b 15 August 1779; d [place] 25 May 1862; m Readfield, Maine, 22 February 1801, John Young
Children of John Young and Polly Mace born Farmington, Maine[12 ]:
a. Lois Young, b 27 May 1801; m Hiram Cole; 9 children
b. Dolly Young, b 11 March 1803; d - August 1887; m Elijah T. Jacobs
c. Helena Young, b 24 January 1805; m Almond Dillingham
d. Mary Jane Young, b 1807; d 1893; m 1834, Henry W. Priest[14 ]
e. Rosina Young, b 20 March 1809; m [place], 6 February 1838, Joseph A. Bruce; 4 children; res. Creighton, Nebraska
f. John Hale Young, b 5 January 1811; m [place], 17 April 1837, Mary Ann Bruce
g. Eliza Ann Young, b 28 October 1812; m [place, date], Alfred D. Barker
h. Julia Ann Young, b 18 November 1814; m(1) [place, date], John Dyke; m(2) [place, date], ___ Baker
i. Joanna/Joan Young, b 19 July 1817; d 1896; m [place], 1842, John A. Hamblin/Hamlin[ 15]
j. Joel B. Young, b 30 April 1819; shot California/Mexico border
k. Aaron Dudley Young, b 22 April 1821; d 1854; went to California for the Gold Rush
l. David I. Young, b 6 March 1823; m fall 1845, Abbie J. Farnham; 10 Children b, 8 d. y.
m. Abigail Butterfield Young, b 21 December 1824; m Norwich, Connecticut, 3 July 1849, Oren Bennet Gibson; 7 children

80 ii Richard J. Mace, Senior, b 27 July 1781
iii Anne Mace, b 25 January 1783; m pos. Readfield, Maine, c 1803, Abizah Scott
Children of Abizah Scott and Anne Mace born [place][ 16]:
a. Albert Scott; m Alivda Mayo
b. Nancy Scott; m Henry ____
c. Mary Scott; m Hiram Averill
81 iv Andrew J. Mace, b 8 December 1784
82 v Isaac Mace, b 25 February 1786

vi Jane Mace, b 16 July 1789; m pos. Readfield, Maine, 26 December 1809, Joseph Morrill

1 Hampton 1:381

2. Georgia Hewins Lilly, Readfield, Maine, Epitaph, (Hallowell, ME, 1929) [hereinafter Epitaph], Book 2:8; East Kingston Cemetery

3 NHTR, East Kingston, 1:102; Linda C. Buxton, Town Clerk of the Town of Kensington, State of New Hampshire, 95 Amesbury Road, Kensington, NH 03833, "The following is a True Copy of Vital Records located in Kensington, New Hampshire: Marriage between Andrew Mace and Jenny Hale took place in Kensington, NH on March 15, 1779, married by Reverend Jeremiah Fogg, 2:6."

4. National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution Records Book (NEHGS Lib: ME-100-32)[hereinafter DAR, RB] Readfield families, p. 32; Epitaph, Book 2:8; Dale Potter Clark, Old Settlers Series, Readfield, Maine (publication info) [hereinafter Old Settlers Series], p. __; East Readfield Cemetery

5 Charles Henry Bell, History of the Town of Exeter, New Hampshire (Bowie, MD, 1990), p. 63g

6 Letter from Martha D. Vining, Town Clerk, Readfield, Maine, dated 17 May 200 list the marriage record of Andrew Mace and Sarah Brown; DAR, RB, Readfield families, p. 32; Epitaph Book, 2:8; East Readfield Cemetery

7 DAR Application file

8 Old Settlers Series

9 Secretary of the Commonwealth, Acts and Resolves of Massachusetts (Boston?, 1889), pp. 653, 654

10 Kennebec County, ME Court Index 1799-1854, Plaintiff/Defendant, Surname Beginning M, Case #'s 286, 2152, 1:47, Box 9, File 21 (Maine State Archives)

11 Old Settler Series

12 NHTR, East Kingston, 1:102, 526; DAR, RB, Readfield families, p. 32; Epitaph, Book 2:8; Underwood p. 103; NSDAR application file; NHVRs; Hallowell VRs, 4:61

13 Information from Clarence M Cummings; DAR records/DAR PI likely

14 NSDAR ID# 88465

15 NSDAR ID# 67388

16 Information from Clarence M Cummings; DAR records/DAR PI likely

Friday, January 14, 2011

Perusing Google Patents

Technology is moving along at an alarming speed. Just a few years ago a librarian at the Boston Public Library showed me a link to the US Patent and Trademark Office website so I could look up patent reports online. Together, the librarian and I recorded the patent numbers of every patent listed under Peter Hoogerzeil, my 2x Great Grandfather, and then we looked through the volumes of books in the PTDL at BPL (that’s the Patent and Trademark Depository Library at the Boston Public Library) to find each patent application. Then we carefully photocopied each one as we found it. It took hours!  The librarian assured me (at that time) that this was much faster than any other way of doing patent searches.

Then, last summer I wrote a blog post about using the online database at  to search for patent numbers by the name of the inventors. At that time, once you had the numbers, you could input them to see images of the patent applications. Check out the blog post here at and you can see that the process was still a big laborious, but better than my previous search.

Last week, on Deb Ruth’s blog “Adventures in Genealogy”, I read about the new Google Patents website at . Now by just entering Peter Hoogerzeil’s name into the search box, I can pull up all the patent images with one click. I can also find all the other inventions up to now that have referenced his original patents in the 1800s and turn of the century. For example, in 1906, Peter Hoogerzeil of Massachusetts patented an amusement park ride for a giant see-saw. In 1950, Charles J. Jugans of New Jersey patented an “Excercising Toy” referencing Hoogerzeil’s original patent and three other patents. Even more interesting, one of Hoogerzeil’s chimney lamp patents from 1899 was used by the famous Coleman Company in 1984 for a new camping lantern! And one of Hoogerzeil’s 1890 patents for a sliding door in an icebox was used in 1994 by Daewoo Electronics of Korea for a new type of refrigerator.

How fun to see that Peter Hoogerzeil’s inventions are still relevant in today’s world! It is very interesting to think that my Great-Great Grandpa’s tinkering turned out to be so useful! The Google Patent search is very easy to use, and it will also make any inventions by family or ancestors pop up in your regular Google searches. All the patents from the 1790s to those “recently issued in the past few months” are available on this search engine.

For fun, I also looked up my first cousin, umpteen generations removed, Benjamin Franklin, and I was surprised to see that he had no patents recorded on the Google Patent website. I used the regular Google search and pulled up this quote from Benjamin Franklin “as we enjoy great advantages from the inventions of others, we should be glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours; and this we should do freely and generously.” This is why he had no recorded patents of any kind with the US government, even though he was a prolific inventor of all sorts of gadgets and household items.

For more information:

Please see Deb Ruth’s stories about Google Patents here at “Treasure Chest Thursday- Google Patents” and “Treasure Chest Thursday – Steffy Patent”  at

The quote from Benjamin Franklin comes from A Benjamin Franklin Reader by Walter Isaacson, Simon & Schuster, 2005

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Londonderry's Hermit

This postcard found on eBay prompted my story….

Crystal Lake, AKA “Skenker’s Pond” or “Mosquito Pond”, is located in Manchester’s south end off Bodwell Road. The City of Manchester runs a municipal park there with swimming. There is still a fieldstone bathhouse located at Crystal Lake Beach, built in 1942 by the Works Progress Administration, which was renovated in 1987.

Charles Alan Lambert arrived in Manchester in the 1840s from Lincolnshire, England to live the life of a hermit. He bought 40 acres on Mosquito Pond, as it was known then, and built a hut.  It appears that Lambert had failed in his law studies, and at love, and decided to take to the woods as a hermit. He lived a vegetarian lifestyle, wrote poetry and tended sheep. He was a local celebrity, and was sought out by tourists for his home grown herbs.  During his life he amassed a large collection of Indian artifacts, which he showed to visitors. He did not allow himself to drink coffee, tea, or alcohol. (Sampson, 2000) 

Lambert lived in his hut for 60 years, and died at the Sisters of Mercy House of St. John for Aged Men in 1914. He was buried at St. Joseph’s Cemetery with a gravestone marked “The Hermit” (Perreault, 1984) His will stipulated that all his property was to benefit St. Patrick’s Orphanage in Manchester.

The famous Manchester photographer Ulric Bourgeois (1874 – 1963) was known for his photographs of the mill workers and French Canadian immigrants. He also had a series of photographs of the hermit Charles Lambert. Bourgeois read about Lambert in the local papers, and bicycled over to Mosquito Pond with fourteen glass plates to make 28 exposures of the hermit over the years. Lambert was almost eighty years old at the time they met, but over a dozen years he struck up a friendship with Bourgeois and allowed him to photograph his lifestyle.  This postcard is one of Bourgeois's photos.

For more information on Charles Alan Lambert:

“Mosquito Pond, or Life in the Woods”, by R. B. Perreault,  in the The Manchester Journal,  July 4, 1984.
Manchester: the Mills and the Immigrant Experience, by Gary Sampson, Acadia Publishing, 2000, pages 103 – 107.

New Hampshire Curiosities: Quirky Characters, Roadside Oddities & Other Offbeat Stuff , by Eric Jones, Morris Book Publishing, 2006, pages 72-74.

Encyclopedia of New England,  "Hermits", by Burt Feintuch and David H. Watters, Yale University Press, 2005, pages 759 - 760.

Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo