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rods; thence south three miles and two hundred and eighty rods to a spruce-tree marked, which is the north-west corner of the town of Waldoborough; thence easterly by said Waldoborough three miles and one hundred and sixty rods to the bound first mentioned.
"To have and to hold the said granted and bargained premises, together with all their appurtenances, free of all encumbrances whatsoever, to him the said John Taylor, his heirs and assigns, as an absolute estate of inheritance in fee simple for ever. And we, the said Thomas Flucker, Hannah Flucker, Isaac Winslow, and Francis Waldo, for ourselves, our heirs, executors, and administrators, do hereby covenant to warrant and defend the afore-granted premises unto the said John Taylor, his heirs and assigns for ever, against the lawful claims and demands of all persons.
"In witness whereof, we, the said Thomas Flucker, Hannah Flucker, Isaac Winslow, and Francis Waldo, have hereunto set our hands and seals this thirtieth day of September, anno Domini one thousand seven hundred and seventy-four, and in the fourteenth year of his majesty's reign.
"THOS. FLUCKER, and a seal.
Signed, sealed, and delivered in presence of us,
Suffolk, ss. Boston, Nov. 17, 1774. — Then the abovenamed Thomas Flucker, Hannah Flucker, Isaac Winslow, and Francis Waldo, personally appeared and owned this instrument to be their act and deed.
"JOHN AVERY, Just. Pacis."
In September, 1774, while Taylor and his men were felling trees in the forest of Maine, and beginning the settlement of a town, the first Continental Congress was in session at Philadelphia. On the 19th of April, 1775, was the battle of Lexington and Concord; and on the 17th of June, that of Bunker Hill. The war of the
American revolution was begun in earnest. Dr. Taylor was an ardent whig, and one of the leading members of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress.1 He was too much interested in political affairs to return immediately. Accordingly, in April, he sent Thomas Wright, who, with the two Butlers, again took possession of the camp, and went to work on the Mill Farm. Wright was soon taken sick, and returned to the West
1 Dr. Taylor was born about the year 1734, probably in Townsend, Mass. He was a physician and trader in Lunenburg, when he purchased the plantation of Stirlington. He was married, by Rev. Wm. Emerson, to Mrs. Rebecca Prescott, of Concord, Aug. 28, 1766. She died March 3, 1772. July 16, four months afterward, he was married, by Rev. Nathaniel Merrill, to Mrs. Anna Dole, of Dunstable, N.H. She died Feb. 1774. He married, July 6, 1777, Ruth, second daughter of John Hunt, Esq. of Watertown; and she died Nov. 39, 1778. He was also once published without being married. After he left Lunenburg, he resided at Pomfret, Ct. and subsequently at Douglas, Mass. He had a son John, born Jan. 1, 1768, and a daughter Betsey. The latter married Josiah Reed. By his second wife, he had a son Daniel, who lived for a time in Belchertown, Mass. was called Doctor, had at least a son and two daughters, and probably moved to the State of New York. According to Phinehas Butler, Dr. Taylor, when a young man, cared little for religious subjects, "till he had a dream about the resurrection. After that he appeared to believe in God and a Saviour." From the Lunenburg town-records, it appears he was one of the selectmen and assessors of that town in 1771, 1772, and 1773. In 1772, he was chosen representative to the Legislature by the towns of Lunenburg and Fitchburg. When he was elected in 1774, these towns, May 20, voted to him patriotic instructions. He was member of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, which convened at Cambridge, Feb. 1, 1775, adjourned Feb. 16, met at Concord, March 22, and continued in session till its adjournment, April 15. It is said to have been through his influence that the adjournment to Concord was effected. Being convened at Concord, April 22, the Provincial Congress adjourned, and met the same day at Watertown, where it was dissolved, May 29, 1775. In the meantime, the battle of Lexington was fought. Dr. Taylor was one of the prominent men of the Congress, on which devolved very solemn and weighty responsibilities. On the journals, his name occurs oftener than that of any man, except Gen. Ward. On the important committees he was associated with Col. Prescott, of Bunker Hill memory, Governor Brooks, of Massachusetts, Vice-President Gerry, and Governor Gill. He was on the committee which drew up the reply to Gen. Gage's proclamation of June 12, 1775, promising pardon to all except Samuel Adams and John Hancock; and was one of the committee to take depositions, after the battle of Lexington and Concord, to be forwarded to Dr. Franklin, in England. He was also a member of the Massachusetts Council, elected May 28, 1777.
ward, as Massachusetts and even New Hampshire were called then, and for a long time afterward. The two young men continued to work through the summer. More trees were cut, principally but not entirely on the north side of the stream. By the labors in the present and the preceding years, a clearing was made from Seven-tree Pond to Crawford's Pond. Towards autumn the felled trees were burnt. Oxen were then hired of William Boggs, of Warren, and ten bushels of rye were sown. This was the first grain ever sown in Union.
The Butlers had toiled in solitude. To them the Lord's Day and the week-day were the same. With each morning they rose to provide or prepare their food and chop trees. It is not to be wondered at that they felt no particular attachment to this mode of life. Accordingly, when they had sowed the grain, they. went to Massachusetts. After their departure, Taylor came, hired Germans and others, lived in the old camp, sowed rye on the remainder of the cleared land, and returned to Massachusetts. Having been absent about two months, during which John Butler lived with Col. Willard, of Lancaster, and Phinehas with Dr. Taylor's father, in Townsend, the two young men returned to Union. It was late in the fall. Taylor hired them out to Benjamin Packard for the winter.
In the course of this season, Benjamin Packard, of Cushing, who came from Bridgewater, Mass. had built a log-house. It was the first house of any kind ever built within the limits of the town, unless some are disposed to dignify by the name of house the shanty or camp which had been put up at the Mill Farm. It was about twenty feet long and eighteen feet wide. It had one room, a cat-and-clay chimney, a stone chimney-back, but no jambs. It was about fifty rods north-west of the island in Seven-tree Pond. Of the three knolls there, the cellar is still visible on the one nearest to the island. Stones were dug out of the cellar-hole in September, 1848. It is supposed they belonged to the chimney, as the cellar probably
was not stoned. In the winter of 1775-6, Packard and the Butlers lived here, getting out lumber for Taylor's buildings at the Mill Stream. The pine-timber was taken chiefly from the west side of Seven-tree Pond, and the oak from the east side, some of it even from the island in Crawford's Pond. Their fare was poor. Packard was a poor provider, and the Butlers suffered with hunger. In the course of the winter, while at work on the island in Crawford's Pond, Phinehas Butler saw by the side of a log something which excited his curiosity. He went to the log, and, as he stooped to see what was there, a bear suddenly thrust his nose up into his face. Butler settled his axe into Bruin, and despatched him forthwith. "After that," says he, "we lived like princes."
PLANTATION HISTORY, 1776.
Philip Robbins's Purchase. - David Robbins's the first Family. Richard Cummings. Taylor again. First Frame House. First Crop of Rye. - Raising of a Barn. -Log-houses of Richard Cummings and David Robbins. - Arrival of the Families of Philip Robbins and Richard Cummings. - Crowded House.-Timber House. Barn. - Taylor's Mills.
WITH the year 1776 came a change. Several persons agreed with Philip Robbins, of Walpole, Mass. to take farms, if he would come east and purchase a tract of land. Accordingly, Robbins made an agreement with Dr. Taylor for about 7,500 acres, at fifty cents an acre. He also agreed to introduce a specified number of settlers. Subsequently, Robbins, in consequence of a misunderstanding with Taylor as to the price, did not take so much. The deed was executed August 1, 1777; in which John Taylor, of Stirlington, conveys to Philip Robbins, of Stirlington, for £1,200 lawful money, a tract of land "in said Sterlingtown,
containing near 4,000 acres more or less, bounded thus: Beginning at a hemlock-tree marked, by Seventree Pond, so called, which is part of St. George's River; thence running west, by the line of the town of Warren 596 rods to a hemlock-tree marked, at Waldoborough line; thence north 7° west, two miles and a half by said line to a birch-tree marked, at the north-east corner of said Waldoborough; thence east, two miles and ninety-six rods to St. George's River, near the mouth of Bowker Brook, so called; thence southerly, by said St. George's River as it runneth, and by Round Pond and Seven-tree Pond as they lie, to the bound first mentioned."1
David Robbins, Philip Robbins's oldest son, had been living two years at Thomaston, on what is called the Kelsey Farm, situated on the west side of the Meadows, and had there built a small log-house. His father offered to give him one hundred and fifty acres more or less, in Union, if he would settle on it; and his
1 Mrs. Mero says, the two parties agreed in the fall that the papers should be made out by Dr. David Fales, of Thomaston. Accordingly, after laboring on his land in the year 1776, and inducing some settlers to come here, Robbins departed for the Westward for the purpose of bringing down his family. The day before he expected to sail, he called on Fales, according to agreement, to sign the papers; but Taylor had gone. Under the circumstances, Robbins hesitated what course to pursue. However, as he had already done much on the land, and there was hardly a doubt that Taylor would abide by his agreement, Robbins concluded to proceed. The next year, Taylor insisted on having about one dollar an acre. Robbins finally took the tract above described. He gave particular charge to his agent at Walpole to pay his debt to Taylor on the very day that it became due; but a violent storm came on, and he did not arrive at Taylor's till the following day. Then, as continental bills had depreciated, Taylor insisted on having specie. Finally, according to Jessa Robbins, Taylor told Philip Robbins he should pay specie, or he would sue him to the farthest court. Robbins told him he would not pay him specie, if he sued him to h-1, and got the d-1 for his attorney. The result was a lawsuit. Robbins "scraped together" some money, besides what he got for his farm at Walpole. After the execution was out, Taylor hesitated to take the pay. The attorney applied to the Judge and Clerk to receive the continental money. It was counted out; Robbins's lawyer had in his hands a demand against Taylor, which amounted to more than the execution; a writ was immediately served, and the money secured to Taylor's creditor.