Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Tombstone Tuesday ~ 1834 Drowned in Windham, NH

This tombstone was photographed at the Cemetery on the Hill, Windham, New Hampshire

In memory of
Who was drowned in
Cobbets Pond, when
returning from meet-
ing on sunday afternoon
Nov. 2, 1834
Aet. 37

When I saw this stone, I knew there must be quite a story to this, since Capt. Dinsmore was obviously not taking a swim after church in November in New Hampshire!  I turned to my copy of Leonard A. Morrison's History of Windham in New Hampshire, 1884, for a clue but it is a rather lengthy book. Then I remembered that there is a digital copy on Archives.org which can be searched via key words.  Within moments I had my answer!

page 179 "1834, Nov. 2 - Rev. Jacob Abbott and John Dinsmoor were drowned in Cobbett's Pond while returning from church, an account of which will be found in the record of the Abbott and Dinsmoor family."

The genealogy of the Abbott family is on pages 300 - 304.  On page 301 is this excerpt "The circumstances of Mr. Abbott's death were painful in the extreme.  On Sunday, Nov. 2, 1834, as he was crossing Cobbett's Pond on his return from meeting, the boat was upset, and he and John Dinsmoor were drowned.  His age was 66 years, 9 months, 26 days."

The Dinsmoor genealogy is quite lengthy, and it begins on page 437.  The story of Captain John Dinsmoor is on page 478, the only child of John Dinsmoor and Isabella Hemphill, who were left childless in their old age. I was very happy I was searching the digital version of the book, because this family had many, many descendants named "John Dinsmoor" in Windham!

Copyright 2012, Heather Wilkinson Rojo


  1. What does aet 37 mean? I'm confused because I thought it had something to do with estimated age at the time of death.

  2. Oh, I see, it was Abbott who was 66. Sorry!

  3. Rev. Abbott was probably one of my and Tim Abbott's cousins. Interesting story!