AGRICULTURE IN 1870
In issue 137 we described Agriculture in Crawford using the 1870 agricultural census and the 1873 tax collector’s list. Now we will look at Alexander and Cooper for 1870. This Alexander and Cooper lists include each name in order as found on the original 1870 agricultural census. The number is the dollar value of the farmland. Following the lists we will describe a farm on either end of the economic spectrum in Alexander and farms of three Cooper neighbors.
TAYLOR, Jonathan - $500
TAYLOR, Stillman - $600
SIMMONS, Samuel - $600
HUNNEWELL, Jonathan - $500
BLANEY, James - $400
MCLAUGHLIN, John - $400
GRIFFIN, Hugh - $600
KEEN, Reuben - $500
BOHANON, Jones - $800
ADDISON, James - $400
STROUT, Solomon - $1000
STROUT, Solomon, Jr. - $1000
SPEARIN, John - $800
PERKINS, Elisha - $800
PALMER, Taylor - $700
BAILEY, Josiah - $700
FROST, Thomas B. - $400
FROST, Stephen - $1000
PERKINS, John J. Jr. - $500
PERKINS John J. - $1500
BROWN, Robert C. - $1200
STROUT, Benjamin - $1000
LYONS, Greenwood - $1000
THISTLEWOOD, Robert K. - $1800
SPEARIN, Jeremiah Jr. - $1500
MURPHY, Edward - $2400
ELLSWORTH, Joseph - $900
LIBBY, Asa - $1500
BERRY, Cordelia J. - $700
LOVERIN, Joseph – $1000
BAILEY, Edmund - $700
ROBB, Thomas - $---
BROWN, Joel K. - $400
DAVIS, Gordon - $400
SPRAGUE, Cyrus - $400
PIERCE, David - $900
CARTER, Thomas - $400
KNIGHT, Paul - $500
BROWN, Michael - $800
SPEARIN, Jeremiah (Sr.) $500
BROWN, William - $500
CARD, Charles - $500
TOWNSEND, Almeda S. - $3000
BERRY, Hiram - $1500
BAILEY, Joseph - $1200
SPRING, William - $1500
PERKINS, Joseph - $1200
STEPHENSON, Elisha - $600
TYLER, Belcher - $600
CRAFTS, Hiram - $500
DWELLEY, John - $700
STEPHENSON, Jesse - $500
GOOCH, John - $1000
AVERILL, Sewell C. - $300
CONNICK, Levi - $1000
FLOOD, Wesley - $1000
MACKLAN, John - $1500
LITTLE, Mehitable - $900
GILLESPIE, William - $900
GRANGER, Joseph - $600
GRANGER, Joseph - $600
THISTLEWOOD, Robert K. - $600
FOLEY, Thomas - $600
PERKINS, John - $2000
CARLOW, John P. - $800
BAILEY, David E. - $700
HUFF, Claudius M. - $1000
GODFREY, Joseph - $2000
BOHANON, George - $500
CARLOW, Benjamin - $375
LITTLE, Andrew - $1000
WALLACE, Robert - $300
FENLASON, James - $300
BAILEY, Nathaniel - $400
SCRIBNER, Stillman - $1000
McPHETERS, Joseph - $800
When we compare the range of farm value in Alexander,
Cooper and Crawford, we find a great disparity in Alexander. In
Cooper the poorest farm was valued at $500 and the most valuable at
$1500, three times the poorest value. In Crawford the range was from
$200 for the poorest to $1000 for the richest, or five times the
value of the poorest.
In Alexander, the poorest farm was worth $200 and the
best farm worth $3000, or 15 times the value of the poorest. Almeda
S. Townsend’s farm was worth $3000, but she, widow of Manly B.
Townsend, had come to Alexander 25 years earlier with a pocketful of
money and had hired men.
The other Alexander farm that was valued at $3000
belonged to Isaac Porter Crafts.
[1870 census: Crafts, Isaac 75 farmer, Rebecca 67
keeping house, Emma 25 domestic, Frederic Cottle 23 domestic, Mary
Cottle 19 school, Willie McLean 7 school]. Fred, Maria and Willie
were children of Isaac’s first child, Mary Jane; and yes, Mary
Jane’s second husband was Edward McLean! Fred had a problem in
that he was not allowed to vote, not for rebellion or other criminal
reasons, but maybe because he was mentally ill. His other
grandfather, Samuel Cottle, had died at the Insane Hospital in
Augusta on June 12, 1867. All this complicated mess proves is that
Isaac had little family help on his farm.
Isaac Porter Crafts was the seventh generation of his family to be in America. He likely was born at North Bridgewater, Massachusetts on July 29, 1794. In 1827 he moved from Hebron, Maine to Alexander, Maine when it was almost a wilderness and he cleared up some of the best farmland in Alexander. He and his family lived at the end of what we today call the Tommy Long Road, where Merle and Ruth Knowles reside in 2008. At age seventy-four Isaac bought land on Tomah Stream. Did he plan to farm or log that land? It appears that Isaac continued farming in Alexander because he was here according to the 1870 census
He married Rebecca Ferris March 23, 1826, daughter of
John Ferris and Mary Stillwell. Rebecca was born at Waterborough,
Queens County, NB. on May 25, 1804. Isaac and Rebecca had nine
children of record, 7 girls and 2 boys. Rebecca died at Alexander on
March 16, 1887; Isaac died on Nov. 26, 1878 at age 84. Isaac,
Rebecca and children Frances, Sarah, Rebecca, and Augusta are buried
at the Alexander Cemetery. Details on this family can be found in
Isaac had 100 acres of improved land, 25 acres of woodlot and 60 acres of unimproved land. This was all valued at $3000. His farm implements were worth $100 and the farm paid wages of $150. Considering his age, he did not hire much help.
Isaac’s stock was 2 horses, 7 milch cows, a pair
of working oxen, 7 other cattle, 27 sheep and a swine. Those sheep
produced 115 pounds of wool. His stock was valued at $725. Isaac
grew 60 bushels of oats, 60 bushels of buckwheat, 25 bushels of peas
or beans and 250 bushels of Irish potatoes. His orchard produced a
value of $15 and his market garden another $25. The family churned
400 pounds of butter. Animals slaughtered were worth $425 which gave
a total farm income of $625. One of the most valuable farms in
Alexander had produced just an average income. Why?
[1870 census: Hunnewell, Andrew 37 farmer, Phebe 25 keeping house, Susanna 7 at home, Ida 5 at home, Jonathan 3 at home] Andrew Hunnewell was born on October 9, 1832 in St. Stephen a son of Jonathan and Susannah (Hall) Hunnewell. Jonathan was from Durham, down on the Kennebec River and Susannah was from St. Stephen. Family tradition has it that Jonathan had worked in the shipyard, which brought him to the St. Croix. He apparently was sent by the shipyard in Calais or St. Stephen to Alexander to find ship’s knees. Jonathan and his family were in Alexander on the 1840 census, likely moving here in 1838.
Andrew, second child of ten, married Phebe Dorothy
Hunnewell. She was born on December 11, 1844 at Durham. She likely
was a cousin. They were parents of nine, three or maybe four born
before the1870 census. Town records indicate that Mary Elizabeth was
born July 24, 1868, but she is not on the census. The cemetery stone
lists Andrew 1829 – 1907, Phebe 1844 – 1913, and John
1867 – 1913. Dates don’t always agree!
Andrew acquired lots 18 and 19 on April 15, 1862 from
Charles Whidden of Calais. Hugh and Clarissa Griffin had been the
previous local owners. This likely was the site of his 1870 farm.
His son Joe referred to the neighborhood as ‘Tuf End’.
Was it ‘tuf’ because of the poor soil and small areas of
arable land or because the folks who lived here were poor?
A corner of lot 18 is today the home of Marie and John
Dudley and John’s woodlot is part of lot 19. Hazel (Cousins)
Frost told me years ago that the cellar by the bars to my woods road
was Andrew’s and that there is a well in the cellar. The well
is still there. She also told me that Andrew would lock Phebe in the
cellar when he went out! Why did he do that?
Andrew had 5 acres of improved farmland and 45 acres
unimproved all valued at $200. He owned 1 horse, 1 milk cow, a pair
working oxen and 1 other cattle, all these valued at $250. His
garden produced 3 bushels wheat and 3 bushels of beans or peas. He
grew 75 bushels of Irish potatoes and churned 100 pounds of butter.
His fields yielded 4 tons of hay. All told, the value of his farm
income was $125.
Here the farmers are listed in original order with the
dollar value of their farms (column 5) shown. Readers can compare
this list to the Alexander census in this issue or the Crawford
census listed in issue 137. Following the list we have described
three farms in the North Union neighborhood.
CREAMER, Thomas $750
CREAMER, Thomas, jr. $500
McGEORGE, Warren $800
FOSTER W. W. $800
CARY, George W. $1000
DEWEY, James $550
WADE, William A. $800
MUNSON, Hiram $600
DAY, Sam $1500
McPHETERS, George W. $1000
CARY, Henry S. $500
VINING, Nathan $1000
TUELL, John Q. $800
DOTEN, William B. $800
PALMETER, G. D. $600
SMITH, George W. $500
IRELAND, James $700
SMITH, Haskell W. $1500
SMITH, Eliza $1000
HITCHINGS, Hiram $1500
SADLER, Samuel $1000
RICH, Daniel F $1500
RICH, William A $1000
HITCHINGS, Margaret $1500
HENDERSON, Isaac N. $900
PALMETER, Chas. W. $1400
BURBANK, Thomas J. $1500
HENDERSON, Eldridge $700
HENDERSON, Elmore $550
IRELAND, Abram $800
SADLER, William $600
HENDERSON, Levi $1200
HOWE, David $1000
LEALAND, Moses $800
HAYWARD, Henry $1000
YEATON, Charles N. $800
SADLER, Thomas $750
LANE, Frank $800
McGEE, John $700
SAWYER, Nathaniel $1000
NEIGHBORS IN THE NORTH UNION
HENRY HAYWARD -
[1870 census: Hayward, Henry 59 farmer, Azubah 52 keeping house,
Richard laborer, Harriet 21 at home, Flora 19 school, Manly 14
school, Howard 13 school, Samuel 9 school, Stillman Higgins 19 works
on farm, Esther Higgins 18 domestic].
Stillman and Esther were children of Nathan
Higgins, a brother of Azubah.
Henry Hayward had 50 acres of improved land, 15 acres of woodland and 75 acres unimproved. I expect the improved land to include gardens, fields for crops, hay fields, pastures and the orchard. His farm implements and equipment was worth $150. Column 7 is for wages paid, probably to farm labor. Crawford’s report has no entries for this. Most farmers in Cooper paid wages to someone. The difference, I expect, was in how the census taker regarded the question.
Henry paid $300 wages, maybe to himself or to family
members. At a dollar a day, that is not an unreasonable amount.
Henry had one horse, 4 milch cows, 9 other cattle, 25 sheep, and a
swine, all valued at $650. Henry was tied with Thomas Burbank of
East Ridge for having the largest flock of sheep in town. Henry’s
sheep gave 130 pounds of wool. Interestingly, a tradition is that
Henry had a daughter killed by a ram and she is buried by a spruce
tree across the road from the house.
I chose to describe this 110-acre farm because the old
house still stands at 163 North Union Road. It has been home for
only four families; Haywards until August 1912, Henry Meyn until he
died in August 1915, Leighton-Cousins family until 2008 and recently
Adam Hunnewell. This is where Royce and Alta (Leighton) Cousins had
their greenhouse. An English barn stands across the road.
Henry grew 50 bushels of oats, 6 bushels peas or beans
and 200 bushels potatoes. The peas or beans were likely dried. His
orchard products were valued at $20. His market garden generated
$100, his woodlot $20 and other manufactured goods earned $30. The
value of animals slaughtered was $300. The family churned 600 pounds
of butter. He cut 20 tons of hay. Total of all farm production was
THOMAS SADLER – [Sadler, William 33 farmer, Alice 29 keeping house, Wallis 5 school, Orin 3, male infant 2/12, George Higgins 9 school]. George Higgins was a brother of Stillman and Esther, another child of Nathan Higgins, Jr.
Thomas Sadler had farmland worth $750; 50 acres improved land and 50
acres woodlot. His farm equipment was valued at $50. Tom had one
horse, 3 milch cows, 4 other cattle and 6 sheep for a total value of
$350. He paid no wages, but had machinery worth $50.
He grew 25 bushels of oats, 20 bushels of buckwheat, 4 bushels of peas or beans and 125 bushels of potatoes. The sheep sheared 20 pounds of wool. His market garden yielded $50 profit. Cows milk, or should I write cream, gave 400 pounds of butter. His fields gave 12 tons of hay. Home manufactures were worth $25 and animals slaughters were worth $75. Total farm income was $600.
Thomas Sadler’s house and out buildings are all
gone. They stood at or near 193 North Union Road. This site today is
the home of my Aunt Marjorie (Frost) Crosby, widow of Dale Crosby
who is mentioned in the Cooper Family diaries. It was here that
three A-CHS members, cousins of this writer, grew-up; David, Richard
and Rodney Crosby. This is why I chose this farm census for this
FRANK LANE –
[1870 census: Lane, Frank 36 farmer, Eliza 20 keeping house, Jennie
3, Temperance 67] Temperance was his widowed mother.
Frank Lane was my great-grandfather. The house he built soon after
fighting in the Civil War still stands at 324 North Union Road. It
has been a home to Lane – Crosby family since; the present
occupant is my aunt Hilda (Gillespie) Crosby.
Frank had 30 acres of improved land, 30 acres of woodland and 40 acres of unimproved land. This was all valued at $800. His farming equipment was worth $75. Frank paid $175 in wages; did he hire a man or pay himself?
Frank had one horse, 5 milch cows and 2 other cattle. He had 10 sheep and 1 swine making his stock worth $475. Those sheep yielded 50 pounds of wool. Frank grew 60 bushels of Oats, 20 bushels of barley, 20 bushels of buckwheat, 6 bushels of peas or beans and 200 bushels of potatoes.
Frank’s market garden gave $75 toward the family cash needs. They churned 600 pounds of butter. The fields gave 25 tons of hay. Total farm production was worth $1000 of which $250 came from animals slaughtered and $50 from home manufactures.