« ForrigeFortsæt »
ed. These manners added to his horrific physiognomy and the stateliness of his person, made him an object of terror to children, among whom there would be a sad scampering when it was announced that old Clagett was coming.
But with all this rough and unpromising outside, he possessed real kindness ol heart, had no malice, and delighted in acts of liberality and kindness even towards his political enemies.
He knew little of farming or the cares of a family and housekeeping. Unfortunately, his wife was as destitute of this useful knowledge as himself, and the interior of few houses was more comfortless in its appearance than his own. His disposition to hospitality, however, continued to the last. His guests were usually entertained at the neighboring tavern, and at his own house, however destitute in other respects, there was never any want of NewEngland rum.
The education of his family was very much neglected. It is believed their only advantages in this respect, were such as the town schools of Litchfield afforded. Perhaps his son Clifton ought to be mentioned as an exception. He was intended for the bar and received in his father's office the most scanty preliminary instruction, which the study of the law requires. The elevation which this excellent man afterward acquired in the State, must be attributed more to his own worth and good fortune, than to his early advantages.
Although for many years much engaged in criminal prosecutions within the state, it does not appear, that his civil business was at any time great, or that he was in much request as an advocate. He could not be classed in the first rank of law. yers, in New Hampshire, at any period of his life.
The Hon. Samuel Livermore, whose name we have already introduced into this memoir, and who was his competitor in the early part of his
practice at Portsmouth, was much his superior, and was without question, during his day, the great man of the state.
His success in the acquisition of property fell probably far short of his anticipations. He labored under the mistake, very common in that period of our history, in imagining that wealth would continue to follow the honors, rather than the industry of the individual. But Mr. Clagett was not avaricious ; he was liberal and careless, and unfortunately connected, for the preservation or increase of property. His real estate at the time of his death, was appraised at about two thousand dollars, and his personal chattels were inconsiderable in value. This real estate was settled on Clifton, and it is believed that the share of an heir did not exceed two hundred dollars. When he moved to Litchfield, he was the proprietor of a fall back chaise, which went to decay, and was never replaced. An indifferent poney became his only vehicle. When on horseback, as the writer has seen him, with his full bottomed white wig, his cocked hat, still retaining some remnants of its gold lace, and his coat, bearing evidence of its antiquity, and as well as the original excellence of its texture, he exhibited a striking picture of dilapidated importance.
The children that survived him were Martha, Clifton, who deceased January 25, 1829, Edward, deceased, and George, Ritta, John and William, still living. Three of his sons, Clifton, Wentworth and William, married daughters of his neighbor, Major · William M'Queston. Ritta married William M'Queston, son of Simon M”Queston, a brother of the major, and who married her mother, the widow of her father, as has already been mentioned. With the exception of Martha, who is somewhat shattered in her mind, the children have, in the main, sustained an unex
ceptionable respectability in life. Wentworth, who died at Newport, a few years since, was an acting magistrate for many years, and Clifton enjoyed some of the first honors of the state, and was, at the time of his death, Judge of Probate for the county of Hillsborough.
We have said that he was a latin scholar. A few specimens are preserved. There is to be seen in the grave-yard at Litchfield, the following Epitaph, written by him on a son that came to his death by the accidental discharge of a gun.
Hic requiescit in pace,
placidus, decorus, sed
plumbeis trans fixus
menses, tantum, vixit. He also wrote the inscription on the Baptismal Vase, presented by the daughters of Col. John Tufton Mason to Queen's Chapel, Portsmouth, viz.
Sarah Catharina et Anna Elizabetha, Johannis Tufton Mason Cohortes Structoris filiæ ornatissimæ, hoc Baptisterium, ex Gallicis manubiis apud Senegallium sub auspiciis predicti Johannis acquisitum Ecclesice Anglicanæ apud
Portsmouth in Provincia vulgo vocata NewHampshire, liberaliter contulerunt, Anno Domini 1761, et vicessimo sexto Predicationis Arthuri Brown, Wiseman Clagett et Samuel Livermore procuratoribus.
In close of this memoir, I observe, that in saying Mr. Clagett was admitted a barrister of the King's Bench, the annals of Portsmouth by Nathaniel Adams, Esq. and the tradition of the family have been followed. But is there not an error in this ? When he left England, he was only 27 years old. In his commission of notary public, and in the will of John Weeks, he is styled gentleman. Had he been a barrister, he would, have been styled Esquire. I infer, therefore, that he was only an attorney. His father, Wyseman Clagett, was without doubt a barrister.
Names of the first settlers of Somersworth,
New-Hampshire. Eld. William Wentworth, Dea.John Hall, Philip Starpole, Jeremiah Tebbets, George Ricker, Maturin Ricker, William Stiles, Maurice Hobbs, Philip Yeaton, Jeremiah Rollins, John Roberts, Hatevil
Roberts, Eben. Roberts, Love Roberts, James Philpot, Jabez Garland, William Downs, Ebenezer Downs, Gershom Downs, Joseph Hussey, Joseph Varney, Samuel Randall, Deacon Thomas Nock, Zachariah Nock, Sylvanus Nock, James Clements, Samuel Jones, Benjamin Mason, Benjamin Twombly, Eleazar Wyer, Nathaniel Perkins. Most of these persons settled in that part of ancient Dover now constituting the town of Somersworth, between 1650 and 1700.
JOURNAL OF THE REV. JOHN PIKE. Wote by the Editor of Messrs. Stevens & Ela's cdition of Dr. Belknap's llist. of New-Hainpshire [Rev. John Pike, whose Manuscript Journal follows, was the
fourth regularly settled minister of Dover. • He was son of Hon. Robert Pike, many years one of the assistants of the colony of Massachusetts, who died 12 December, 1706, at the age of 91. He was born at Salisbury, 15 May, 1653, and received his education at Harvard College, where he graduated in 1975, in the class of which year, his name is placed at the head. He was ordained the 31 August, 1681, and remained at Dover until the desolation occasioned by the Indians in June, 1699, when he removed to Portsmouth, The next year he went to Hampton, and from thence to Newbury, in 1691. He returned to Portsmouth, 6 October, 1692, and entered upon their Najesties' service for Pemaquid fort, for which place he sailed on the 17 of the same month, and arrived there on the 26th. He returned to Portsmouth, 13 July, 1695, and removed with his family to Dover, 11 November, 1698, where having renained nearly four years, he removed to his native town, 21 October, 1702, but again returned to Dover after a year or two, and there. closed his days, 10 March, 1710, in the 57th year of his age. Rev. Jabez Fitch, in his MSS. speaks of Mr. Pike as “a person of great humility, meekness and patience, rauch mortified to the world, and without gall or guile.” Dr. Belknap, in the church records of Dover, p. 16, says that Mr. Pike “ teemed as an extraordinary preacher, and a man of true godliness. He was a grave and venerable person, and generally preached without notes. Those who were well acquainted with him have given him the character of a very considerable divine.” Mather, in the Magnalia, ii. 511, says he “was much beholden to him” for communicating many passages which occur in his history. Some of his manuscript sermons were extant when Dr. Belknap wrote.”]
A memorandum of personal occurrences.
John Pike came to Dover, for the work of the ministry, Nov. 1, 1678.
Married Sarah, the second daughter of Mr. Joshua Moodey, May 5, 1681.