HISTORY OF GOSSVILLE AND
This history of the
The second source are
notes made by Benjamin M. Towle in 1936 of his
recollections of the homes and families living on
The Gossville bounds
start with the Bickford homestead on the east end and following west on Route 4
to the old Suncook Railroad bed, then north to the
The earliest settlements in Epsom were on Center Hill, with the
first road having been built there about 1733 when the proprietors designated
East Street the name of the road from the meetinghouse towards Nottingham
(later Deerfield), and in the opposite direction, West Street. Early on the
In September of 1772, the Epsom proprietors voted to lay out a
road from the end of
Not convincing the State, the new road, the First New Hampshire Turnpike, was laid out through town, but with perhaps one alteration. The following story has been passed down, and told by George H. Yeaton in his writings on Epsom town history.
“The legend is that in building this road the company in charge of
its construction had planned to build it on the level ground just back of the
Richard bought additional property in 1775 (part of lots 117 and
118) and again in 1788 (part of lot 119). William bought part of lot 113 in
1790, and Richard additional land in lot 110 in 1796. The
Early settlers in the boundaries of Gossville was Samuel Bickford who lived where the current Bickford house stands. The lot was bought by 1760 by Thomas Bickford, selling 50 acres to his brother Samuel. The farm was sold to son Samuel Weeks Bickford in 1816.
In 1761 Jeremiah Prescott settled in the area on part of lot 94 in
the area near the
About the turn of the century, Abel Lamprey built a shop across from the old tavern, now the Gossville Hotel, and in 1902 the Epsom Public Library was built. Upon his death in 1887, the heirs sold the majority of his holdings to Charles Sumner Hall.
Hall continued to build, including his own house which was erected
opposite the parsonage replacing an existing structure, and three small houses
were built as rentals just over the Little Suncook River on
Upon his death his property was broken up. The hotel became the
Pine Grove Inn, the lace factory was rebuilt across the Little Suncook River,
and the three houses, along with others, were sold. The old Lamprey shop became
Huckin’s garage. With these changes, the
Work was done in 1991 by the New Hampshire Division of Historical
Resources to identify and present this area as the Gossville
Historic District for possible inclusion in the National Register of Historic
Places.. The area was surveyed and all the relevant
houses and structures were researched, based primarily of the owners shown on the
1892 map of the town. The area included the Bickford homestead property from
the west side of Locke’s Brook, being the eastern end of the 160 acre district.
The western end was on
Thomas Bickford and his wife Esther Adams raised their family in
Though the deed when Thomas bought lot 95 from William Johnson is
dated October 14, 1761, he sells 50 acres of the land “I bought of William
Johnson” to his brother Samuel Bickford March 18, 1759. Samuel bought land from
the town of
Samuel, who married Abigail Cook
Mehetable, who married Simeon Page
Benjamin, who married Hannah Locke
Thomas, who married Olive Haynes
Mary, who married Jonathan Elkins
John, who died young
Joseph, who married Hepzibah Marden
Son Thomas and his wife Olive inherited the homestead and raised seven children:
John, who married
Samuel Weeks, who married Lucy Coolidge Learned
Nathan, who married Eliza Dickey
Olive, who married Simeon Philbrick
Daniel C., who married Jane Staples
Mehitable, who is buried in the
Dearborn, of whom nothing is known
Olive Bickford remarried after the death of her husband, Francis Locke. Most all of the male children remained in Epsom.
Thomas died in 1819, and in 1816 before he died, deeded 25 acres and half of the buildings to his son Samuel Weeks Bickford. Shortly thereafter, Samuel built the current house that stands on the homestead. Samuel Weeks Bickford and his wife Lucy had seven children:
George, who married Eliza King
Caroline M., who married Jonathan Curtis Sanders
Charlotte who married Jonathan H. Downing
Lucy Coolidge who married Capt. James Sherburne Moses
Charles, who married Mary A. Downing
Horace Grafton, who married Emily G. Sanders
Eliza D. who married Charles Horace Learned
Samuel Weeks Bickford, in his will, left the homestead to his youngest son Horace, who married about 1866 Emily G. Sanders, daughter of William and Rachel B. (Wallace) Sanders. Together they had one son, Samuel W. Bickford. On September 4, 1889, Samuel W. married Emma Janette Philbrick, daughter of Jackson C. and Eliza (Crawford) Philbrick. There were three children, Harold S., who married Laura M. Young; Helen, who died young; and Hester E., who inherited the homestead and married in 1952, Vivian Lee Pickard. The large barn that was part of the property was taken down in 1990.
This lot is almost an acre in size and was part of the property
owned by Morrill D. Bickford. After his death, his widow Eliza’s estate was
handled by Horace Edmunds, who had married their daughter
MORRILL D. BICKFORD HOUSE
Morrill D. Bickford was born in 1836, son of Nathan and Eliza (Dickey) Bickford. The families lived on Route 28 south and Morrill learned a successful lumber business from his father. According to the Stearns genealogy, he built a dwelling house in Gossville, and in 1881 erected a residence on his home farm. He married November 28, 1862, Eliza J. Hoyt, daughter of Morrill and Ruth (Sargent) Hoyt of Northwood. They had two children, Susie A. Bickford (1866-1897) who died unmarried; and Adelaide E., who in 1891 married Horace Wells Edmunds, son of Jefferson A. and Sally G. (Goss) Edmunds.
Morrill D. Bickford bought land from William Goss in 1883 and there erected a house for himself and his wife for their later years. Morrill died in 1912, and his wife Eliza in 1917. She inherited the house at the time of his death and sold it to her son-in-law Horace Edmunds in 1913. Following her death, Horace sold the land and home to John C. Brown in 1918. The house remained in the family passing to his son Robert Mason Brown, and to his son John Robert Brown. The home left the family in 1962 when it was sold to Robert and Ann Wilcox.
JOSEPH LAWRENCE HOUSE
William Goss sold ten thousand square feet of land to Joseph
Lawrence August 24, 1883 which bounded the land he sold that same year to
Morrill D. Bickford.
The house was occupied by the Quimby’s for almost 20 years. Walter, son of Sylvester and Georgie Ann (Bickford) Quimby, married first Effie Bryant, and second, Jennie R. Moore. It was sold to Clayton Heath and Fred Smith in 1956, and sold by Fred and Lillian Smith to Paul Jackson in 1958. Paul and his wife Charlotte ran the Hi-Way Grill restaurant across the street.
A town warrant asked the town to add a basement to the town hall
and make space to house three fire trucks. At the time, Epsom’s two trucks had
been housed there, but fire destroyed that portion of the bulding.
Apparently the warrant article failed as the town of
The site originally was the location of a carriage shed, and later housed a hearse that the town bought in 1889. Town reports included payments for driving the hearse, often to A. D. Sherburne and continued through at least 1927.
William Goss sold an acre of land to Mrs. Lizzie M. Warren in
October of 1883. It is at this time the house was likely built. Lizzie, was Mary E. Holmes, sister of Hiram A. Holmes and
daughter of Joseph and Sophia (Stevens) Holmes. She married in
George Warren was a carpenter and also worked at the nearby sawmill and lace factory. His son Roscoe fixed tools and did metal work.
Addison S. Davis was born in
The area of
The buildings in the survey included:
The Free Will Baptist Church which was originally erected in 1834 and replaced with a new building in 1861. The original building was moved to the site of the former Gossville Store and post office. Several years prior to the building of the second church building, a parsonage was erected, in part from buildings across the street owned at the time by Aaron Estabrook.
The Shoe Factory was established in 1881 by 26 individuals buying
shares at $25.00 per share. The largest shareholder was William Goss with 32, and Silver & Robinson with 20. The first firm to
lease the factory was that of Hill and Puffer, both from
The Nathan Goss house was built about the time the shoe factory was established, just across the Little Suncook River from there the factory was built. Nathan was a son of William Goss who married in 1886, Ida M. Leighton. Nathan died in 1910 and his wife eventually moved to the west coast, and sold the property in 1942 to her daughter Ethel,who had married William E. Davis. In 1948 Ethel sold the home to the fledgling Gossville Textile Company, and it bought from them by Richard and Thelma Boyd in 1957.
Next to the Goss House was what became the silk
mill, the location of the Barmer Narrow Fabric
Company after being housed in the old shoe factory which burned in 1916.
According to Benjamin M. Towle’s memoirs of
The other half of the long house was first occupied by Jonathan Marden who bought it from Jonathan Goss in 1888. They sold the house in 1896 when it went through several owners until it was sold to Clarence and Hannah Pennell. It was then bought by Robert Zinn who owned it until 1946.
Across the street on the west side of
This house is on part of the original lot 94 which was owned by
Col. Daniel Cilley. At the time of his death in 1842,
there were few buildings on the property besides the tavern and its out buildings. The family estate was eventually sold to
William Goss, but at least three parcels were excluded. One parcel was where
the second Cilley school house,
later the Gossville District 2 school is located.
Another parcel was sold and used as the site of the Free Will Baptist
parsonage. The third was just past the schoolhouse and sold to Aaron Estabrook of
It is possible that one of the buildings was a home to William P. Cilley or one of his brothers. The parsonage across the
street was erected a year later in 1853 and included part of the buildings
owned by Estabrook, and is described in a deed as a
‘certain building attached to my dwelling house in said Epsom commonly
designated as the store part, thereof, being thirty feet in length by twenty
feet in width, two stories in height.‘ It would seem that Estabrook
purchased a dwelling house with a store attached. Estabrook
was a painter by trade and married in Lawrence, MA.,
Martha Jane Ham, born in Epsom, daughter of George Benson and Olive Ann
(Bickford) Ham. The Estabrooks left Epsom after about
seven years selling the home to Nathan Bickford in March of 1859. Nathan had a
large home on Route 28, and sold this house and property to his son Morrill D.
Bickford in November of that same year. The Bickford’s may have bought the
property for speculation, as in August of 1860, the house was owned by William
Ham, who owned a farm on
William Ham owned the house until his death in 1872 when Horace Bickford, representing the estate, sold the property to John C. Brown. Brown only held the property for about a year when he sold it to John A. Goss, son of William Goss. Whether John A. Goss and his family occupied the house is unknown, but it was sold in 1873 to Jacob F. Robinson, part of the partnership of Silver and Robinson who took over the Goss store.
According to the Analectra newspaper of
February 13, 1884, Mr. [Jacob] Freeze Robinson is moving his family to Suncook
where he has gone into the Dry Goods business with the Messrs. Johnson of that
place. He has been in company with Mr. Silver at Gossville
for the past 12 years, but sold out to Sumner Hall a few months ago. He sold
the house to Charles Sumner and Ellen (Dolbeer) Hall
November 17, 1883. The Hall’s tore down the house and built the Victorian style
house that remains today. Mrs. Ellen Hall died in 1914, and Charles Sumner Hall
continued to live in the house, which he sold to his nephew George Hall
September 10, 1925. He died 25 days later. His nephew inherited his estate and
sold if off in various sales, with the house being sold to Lillian E. Morrison of
Charles S. Hall was the son of John C. and Martha (
Lillian Morrison was well to do, and a major benefactor to the
THE ROYAL/BICKFORD HOME
This house was probably built by William Goss, who sold land and
buildings, the parcel ‘at the northwest corner of the Freewill Baptist
parsonage,’ in 1886 to Jacob L. Langley of
After the death of Charles S. Hall, the estate sold the house to George W. and Chloe (Burnham) Atwood. George died in 1932 and Chloe married George H, Haynes. The house was sold in1943 to Henry Dearborn who sold it the next year to Elmore and Hattie (Ambrose) Bickford.
The original schoolhouse for what was called the Western or Cilley District (also School District No. 2) was on
GEORGE H. YEATON HOME
The house occupied by George H. Yeaton from about 1930 until his death in 1970. The house was built by the Goss family around 1880, perhaps as a rental property, and on the death of William Goss, was part of the estate which was disposed by his son John A. Goss. Upon the death of his father, the house was sold to his step-mother (the second wife of William Goss) Sally Rebecca (Randall) Goss and her sister, Ruth Elizabeth (Randall) Prescott. The date was September of 1887. Sally Rebecca Randall had married previously John K. Crockett, by whom she had one daughter, Annie Rebecca Crockett, who married as his second wife, James A. Yeaton in 1874. His first wife, Martha A. Randall, was a sister to Sally Rebecca Randall.
After the deaths of the two sisters, Annie R. (Crockett) Yeaton was the sole heir, and upon her death in 1915, the property passed to her two surviving children, Helen E. P. (Yeaton) Steele and her brother George H. Yeaton. Helen E. P. Steele deeded her one undivided half to her brother George H. in September of 1937. George H. Yeaton married in 1909, Ada Lucy Brown of Gilmanton and they had three children, Esther Ruth, John Brown (Johnny B.) and Marjorie A. Yeaton.
HEATH/FRED KNIGHT HOUSE
In August of 1886, William Goss sold to Isabel F. Heath, 10,000
square feet of land just east of his Suncook Valley House. She was Isabel Fifield who married in 1885, Alonzo Smith Heath, son of
Christopher S. and Rosilla W. (Clough) Heath. The
young couple occupied the house for over a dozen years before selling it to the
widower, William G. Hoyt of
Grace sold the premises to Horace Edmunds in May of 1924, moving
just up the road to a small home, probably rented from Charles Sumner Hall, as
is was near his office. Horace would have been familiar with the property. His
parents were Jefferson A. Edmunds and his wife, Sally G. Goss, sister of William
Goss. He married Adelaide E. Bickford, daughter of Morrill D. Bickford and
Eliza J. Hoyt. Eliza was the daughter of Morrill Hoyt, and her brother, William
G. Hoyt, had bought the house in 1899. His wife
Horace Edmunds died in 1935, and as his heir, his son Bruce R.
Edmunds, sold the house to J. Fred and Katherine (Chase) Knight. Katherine was
for many years a teacher at the
THE CILLEY TAVERN
The Cilley Tavern was located on lot #94
in the third range, the original right of Col. Shadrach Walton of
Col. Jeremiah Prescott, son of Jeremiah, sold one half of the lot
‘being the same land that I bought of my honored father Jeremiah Prescott, late
of Epping, deceased with all the buildings standing on said premises’ to Joseph
Cilley of Nottingham. General Joseph Cilley and wife Sarah Longfellow,
raised a family of ten children, including son Daniel Cilley
who married Hannah Plumer in 1790 and built his
tavern on lot 94, and inherited the property on the death of his father in
1799. On May 27, 1799 Col. Daniel Cilley received a
tavern license from the town of
The Cilley’s had nine children: Polly Dole who married Robert Knox; Bradbury, who married first Sally Wiggin, and second a Mary Smith; Samuel Plumer who married Hannah W. Critchett; Joseph who died young; Daniel who died young; Reverend Daniel Plumer, who married Adelaide Haines; a twin sister Hannah Plumer who died young; William Plumer who married Emeline Whitney; and his twin brother Jonathan Longfellow, who married Harriet Whitney. Harriet and Emeline were sisters, daughters of Samuel and Abigail (Goss) Whitney.
The tavern was almost lost in 1833 when three barns and a shed were set ablaze by an arsonist, with the house barely having been saved. The lost buildings prompted a reward being offered by the Selectmen for information leading to the conviction of the incendiaries.
Daniel Cilley died in 1842 and the
family continued the operation of the tavern until the death of his widow in
1850. Son William P. Cilley was the executor of the
estate and sold off several smaller lots before selling the balance of the
estate, including the tavern, to William Goss, March 12, 1855. The only son to
remain in the area was Samuel Plumer Cilley, who lived at various times at different locations
in Epsom and
SUNCOOK VALLEY HOUSE
At the time William Goss bought the estate of Daniel Cilley, several small parcels of land had been sold. One was land for the Free Will Baptist parsonage in 1853; a land an buildings across the street to Aaron Estabrook in 1852; and the relocation of the Cilley District School next to the Estabrook property in 1852. The original Free Will Baptist Church was still in use on this lot. This is as it appears in the map of 1858.
For the first three years that William Goss owned the former Cilley estate, few changes were made. It was nearly a year before Goss opened the tavern, newly names the Suncook Valley House. His day book starting late 1855 survives and provides an approximate date of his opening, December 7, 1855.
James M. Sherburne, who owned property on the hill behind the Goss tavern and farm, kept a diary. In the year 1859 he writes that on Thursday, May 26th, the William Goss barn was burnt. He does not state how badly it was damaged, but he is paid in June of that year for a couple days work shingly the barn. This would likely be a barn rebuilt by Daniel Cilley after his barn fire in 1833.
It was not long after Goss bought the property he began to build
upon it. He moved houses to the area, including his father's house from the
Fowler District; built a house for his son John, and
in 1861, bought the old Free Will Baptist church and moved it to what was later
William Goss was born in Epsom, the son of Jonathan and Sally (Yeaton) Goss. The Goss family got their foothold in Epsom with brothers Joseph and Samuel Goss. Samuel married Abigail Lucas and among their nine children was son Jonathan born July 16, 1793. Jonathan married Sally Yeaton, daughter of William and Hannah (Towle) Yeaton in 1816. Their children included Noah, who died young; William; Hannah who married Nathaniel S. Edmunds; Nancy who married Edward Edmunds; Sally G., who married Jefferson Edmunds; Mary, who married George W. Morse; and Andrew J. who married Lucy Barnhouse.
William married first, Maryetta Abott, son of William and Esther (Fowler) Abbott in Pembroke, July 2, 1846. They had four children: John Abbott who married Electa Ann Carpenter in 1869; daughter Elizabeth J. Goss who married Alfred Porter Bickford; Noah William who married Clara Jackman; and Nathan Jonathan who married in 1886, Ida M. Leighton. William's wife Maryetta died in 1873, and he married as his second wife, Sally Rebecca Randall, daughter of Francis D. and Betsey (Sanborn) Randall. She was previously married to John K. Crockett, by whom she had a daughter, Annie Rebecca Crockett. This daughter married James A. Yeaton in 1874 as his second wife. His first wife, Martha A. Randall, died in 1869. She was a sister to the second wife, Sally R., of William Goss.
The shoe factory brought the need for additional housing, and William Goss sold land and buildings during this period which included the later homes of Robert M. Brown, Walter Quimby, Roscoe Warren, Elmore Bickford, Fred Knight, George H. Yeaton, and the earlier Addison Davis house.
William Goss died in 1887 and the family for a time continued to
run the Suncook Valley House. The 1892 map of Epsom shows son Noah W. Goss
residing there with his mother located in the later George H. Yeaton house next to the
John A. Goss sold the hotel and land to Chapin H. Osgood of Loudon, October 22, 1894.
Not quite two years into his ownership, fire struck the property on April 5, 1896, as described in a newspaper account:
Saturday April 11, 1896 Epsom News-Letter
Old Goss Stables with fifteen head of Cattle Destroyed.
The village of Gossville in the town of Epsom was visited by the fire fiend about six o’clock Sunday night, and the two large barns, stable and sheds connected with the old hotel stand, owned for many years by William Goss, and now owned by Mr. Osgood, were burned to the ground , together with 14 cows, a calf and several tons of hay. The house was saved after a long fight. The origin of the fire is a mystery as no light had been used about the barn for 24 hours.
The barn and stable were a total loss, and the dwelling had partial damage, according to the Town Fire Log, which listed Chapin H. Osgood as both owner and occupant. Newspaper ads for 1896 show that the hotel may have been leased by C. J. Brown - ‘Suncook Valley House, Gossville, Epsom, NH near Railroad Station. Board by the week; $1.00 per day; single meals .25 cents.Livery stable connected. C.J. Brown, Manager’ Brown also ran from the hotel an Epsom-Northwood stage during this same period. A newspaper account described a newly added stage coach, as seen in this partial article:
June 1896 Epsom and Northwood Stage New stage christened: The elegant new stage just placed on the Northwood and Epsom line was christened last week Thusday by a free ride given to a number of our town officials and prominent citizens by special invitation from the proprietor, C. J. Brown. The party numbered 17 and started from the Epsom depot on the arrival of the up train at about 11:30 o’clock. The stage was gaily decorated and drawn by four handsome horses driven by the proprietor himself. Several members of the party were provided with fish horns, cow bells and other musical instruments, which awoke the echoes along the hills and announced their progress to the wondering inhabitants along the route. Arriving at Gossville, the store of Silver and Hall was visited, and all were refreshed by cool lemonade provided by Mr. Silver. Here the party separated with many compliments for the new coach and thanks to the genial proprietor for a most enjoyable outing. The new coach is a beauty, strong and serviceable. It has three seats inside, and accommodations for a number of outside passengers. It is handsomely painted and upholstered and is a credit to the builders and to the enterprising proprietor. The change is one which will no doubt be fully appreciated by all who have occasion to patronize the route.
On August 15, 1897, lightning struck the rebuilt stables which
were again totaled. The dwelling and hotel also caught fire but were saved,
though they received partial damage. In October of 1897 Osgood took a mortgage
with Charles Sumner Hall. Newspaper ads showed a change in December of 1897
when the facility was likely leased to Edgar F. White, who changed the name to
the Gossville Hotel. Dec. 4, 1897 Gossville Hotel,
Edgar White continued as proprietor of the newly named Gossville Hotel. Documents do not show just when the ownership left the hands of Chapin Osgood, but it is possible the mortgage to Charle Sumner Hall defaulted. Hall rebuilt the barns which were earlier lost to fire. The 1900 US Census for Epsom shows Edgar White and his family still managing the hotel, renting the business. He buys and mortgages the business, which at this time included only the hotel property and not the lands associated with the Goss estate. The property is acquired from and mortgaged by Charles Sumner Hall in June of 1903. A half dozen years later Edgar White sells the business back to Charles Sumner Hall, April of 1908. From 1909 to 1911 the hotel is managed by Ezra Bennett. By 1916 the hotel is operated by C. S. Hall.
In 1916 the old Gossville Hotel was
being run by
George H. Yeaton in his writings and memories of Epsom history mentions the history and his recollections of the hotel. Among them are the following excerpts:
At one time the mailstage went from
The stage carrying the mail, express and passengers would leave
I can picture the long table with the farm help and some of the men boarders, who worked at the Shoe Factory, seated around this table eating their evening meal.
The women boarders and transients would eat in an adjoining room.
Then in memory I can see the large fireplace, in the front room, used as the office, just off the kitchen, also the set kettle and dutch oven in the back room, the long veranda on the front of the house, and many other recollections come to my mind, like the large corn barn that was on the opposite side of the highway, the long neck gander who chased me and of other happenings in the days now long gone, when I was a small boy. I can remember standing near the large stove in the tavern kitchen, watching my Aunt Elisabeth frying the rye crullers in a kettle of deep fat.
Charles Sumner Hall constructed a house to the east of his home as
a rental property, purchased the house across the street which he also rented.
He started a box shop at the site of the old shoe factory building and leased
part of it to Robert Zinn who started his lace
factory business. Shortly before his death he constructed three small houses
just over the
PINE GROVE INN
When the estate of Charles Sumner Hall was sold, the farm and land
was purchased by M.C Ford and later by Charles Doherty. The hotel was purchased
by Ernest I. Bent of
The original structure that later became Huckin's Garage does not appear on the 1892 map, and was constructed about 1895 by Charles Sumner Hall. By 1900 it included a residence that was later attached to the business, and it was rented by Abel B. Lamprey, his wife Ann L., and her father Moses Sanborn. Abel Lamprey was a blacksmith and ran his blacksmith shop and the Gossville Carriage Company. Moses Sanborn died in 1910 and does not show in household in the 1910 census. By 1920, Ann Lamprey had died, and Abel still rented the property, with his mother now living with him. Abel died in 1925 and had left the business which was sold to Charles N. Huckins July 12, 1924 by C.S. Hall. The deed stipulated that for 25 years ‘no building or structure whatever shall be erected or moved upon those portions of the premises which lie easterly and westerly of the buildings now on said premises’….the object being to keep the present view from the Gossville Hotel. The deed gives the property as comprising of ‘a dwelling house, shed, blacksmith shop and the Gossville Garage, now occupied by the grantor.’
According to information given to the Gossville
Historic District by Ivan Rutherford, (Charles) Huckins
worked for a time as a clerk in the nearby store of Silver and Hall. He pursued
a hobby of fixing motorcycles in the old blacksmith shop near his house. As
automobile travel became more common, this hobby expanded into a business and Huckins established the Gossville
Garage during the late 1920’s. The garage grew rapidly to include an automobile
dealership and service station. He operated the garage until 1958 and it was
then continued by Doris Huckins, and with a newer station being built in
The property across the street, including the large barn, was part of the Doherty farm. Charles S. Hall had separated the farm from the hotel business, and his heirs sold the farm to Sarah G. Ford in 1926, and she sold the property to Charles and Beaulah K. Doherty. This property, including a house, barn and land behind the garage, to Doris Huckins in 1943. The barn and subsequent parking area became the dealership portion of the of Huckins Garage. Heirs Gordon (Tommy) Huckins and his sister Virginia H. Yeaton sold the barn and lot to Eric Keeler and David Mihachik Jr., in 2000. The barn was lost to arson July 21, 2008.
The heirs of Charles S. Hall sold the farm (house, land and barn, excluding the hotel lot) to Sarah G. Ford in 1926. Two years later it was sold to Charles and Beaulah K. Doherty. They struggled for many years to keep the property, but lost it to foreclosure. With the exceptions of a couple small lots, the finance company sold the property to Doris E. Huckins on April 10, 1943. The barn and subsequent parking lot were used as part of the Huckins Garage complex as a dealership.
One small portion of the Doherty farm sold included, with buildings, a small parcel to Charles H. Chase which was operated as a store. Other buildings nearby included a building referred to as 'the bungalow.' The store property was sold by Ethel Cousins, administrator of Adelaide M. Chase, to Charles N. Huckins in 1953.
The Doherty house was originally a wing of the Gossville Hotel which was removed by C.S. Hall to this location, and at a later date was raised to a two story dwelling.
In photo above the house is on the right before it was added to.
This small building was used as storage for the nearby Silver and Hall store. It was acquired from John E. Chesley in 1895. The only building mentioned on the deed is the wheelwright shop, occupied by 1892 by Hiram Parker who lived in one of the nearby houses. There are no deeds, but it would appear John E. Chesley acquired both his buildings. Silver and Hall sold to Harry Silver and Burt Young, and Burt Young sold this small parcel ‘being the premises on which the store house of Silver and Young is located’ to Howard Saturley 1947. He used the building for a small shop before selling it to Harold S. Bickford in 1953. Bickford sold it to his wife Laura Mae (Young) in July of 1955 where she established a gift shop – The Pine Shop. Harold Bickford died the next year, and she married for a second time Edward Beane. She sold her shop in 1958 to Marguerite Hallett of Concord. By 1972 she, as Marguerite R. George, sold the business to the Yeaton family which operated Wagon House Gifts. Since about 1980 it has been occupied by Suncook Valley Artisans.
Laura Mae (Young) Bickford Beane was the daughter of Burt D. and Lottie M. (Dempsey) Young. Burt and his wife had four children, Mable who married Allie Bartlett; Laura Mae; Lester B. who died tragically when as a cather, a foul ball hit him in the chest, he was 24; and Hazel M. who married Millard Yeaton.
The house on this lot was part of the lot bought by Howard Saturley. It is unclear when the house was built, but it was occupied for a time by the Saturley family and then rented. The house was sold in May 1963 to Walter F. and Hattie B. (Zinn) Heath. The Heath’s held the property for a little less tha a year, selling the house in April of 1964.
ANDREW SILVER HOME
The house was likely moved to this site at about the time William Goss deeded the land and buildings to his son John in March of 1868. At the time there were already other buildings in the immediate vicinity. The old Free Will Baptist Church was moved in 1861 and the southerly half of it, being used as a carriage makers shop, was part of the property deeded to John. Another building mentioned is a blacksmith shop, but its location in the area is not given.
John A. Goss went into the store business with his father, having
converted the carriage makers shop. He got involved in banking and moved to
HARRY SILVER HOME
William Goss moved and built houses to accommodate members of his
family. The land to the left of where the old
At the time there had to be few burials in the area, and the
mother of William Goss is among the early graves having died in 1864. William
Abbott and his second wife, Nancy (
Jefferson A. Edmunds was the son of Edward and Betsy (Lane)
Edmunds of Chichester. The family moved from former
Goss land across town to Gossville. Their children
included Frank Lafayette who died young; Frank Warren; Ada,
who married Elmer Cobb; Cora A. who married John K. Stokes and lived in Epsom;
Florence N. who died young; Willie G. who did not marry and died at age 24;
Grace D. who married Arlie Oliver; Walter; Horace W. who married first, Adelaide
E. Bickford, and second, Sadie R. Reed, resided in Epsom; and John L. Edmunds.
The property is described in the deed as 'a tract of land with the buldings thereon wituated in
Epsom and bound north by the
Harry Silver was an only child of Andrew and Juliette E. (James) and was born in Epsom in 1882. In December of 1906 he married Alice Bertha Yeaton, daughter of Daniel Towle and Ann Bray (Rowell) Yeaton. They had no children, and Harry Silver died in 1966. His widow continued to live in the house until she died in 1978. LaFayette Pinckney was the administrator of her estate who sold the house to Ernestine Faith Wilson in December 1978. Ernestine already owned the former Andrew Silver house. She sold this property in 1998, and the house has changed hands many times since.
The two Silver homes along with that of Charlie Huckins (Huckin’s Garage) were the first homes in Epsom with electricity, provided with a generator owned by Charlie Huckins. There is some debate as to the age of the house. There has been a house on this site since 1866, but it is not known if the house was built there, moved there, or replaced since it first appeared. The town property card dates the house as 1803, which information came from Ernestine Wilson. If she is correct, it had to have been moved to this spot after 1858 (as it is not on the map for that year) and before 1866 when it was sold to William Abbott.
The first store in this part of town was actually very near the Cilley Tavern. In 1802 Mark French bought a half acre lot
52 rods from the house and tavern of Daniel Cilley
and erected a building there. He sells it in 1815 to John B. Girard,
A few years after Goss bought the Cilley
estate and began running his Suncook Valley House and the large farm, he helped
the Free Will Baptist Church with construction of a new meetinghouse by buying
the old one built in 1834. The old building, intact, was moved west to the
From the Valley Times March 17, 1870
New Store New Store
The subscribers offer for sale at their new Store just opened at
Goss' Village in Epsom, a good variety of West India Goods and Groceries at
extremely low prices. Having purchased goods for cash in
Motto, Quick Sales and Small Profits.
Wm. & John A. Goss. Epsom, Feb. 28, 1870
For whatever reason, the father and son team elected not to
continue to run a store, and the next year William Goss sold the northerly half
of the store and the horse shed that the duo of Silver and Robinson already
occupied. A few months earlier John A. Goss sold to Silver and Robinson his
southerly half of the store. The partnership of Silver and Robinson lasted for
ten years. In November of 1883, Jacob Robinson left Epsom for Pembroke and sold
his half of the business to Charles S. Hall. Hall was the son of John C. and
In 1882 the Gossville Post Office was established with Andrew J. Silver, postmaster. Just prior to Robinson selling his half of the store, a major change was made to its appearance. The one story building was raised, with the original church becoming the second floor, and it opened as the Grand Army of the Republic Hall and was dedicated by the post September 20, 1883, in which they held their meetings. Some months later it was announced in a newspaper dated November 1, 1883: The old Freewill Baptist meeting house, at Gossville in Epsom, has had a story added which will be used as a G.A. R. hall and Good Templars' lodge room. So the second story was not added until some 22 years after it was moved from its original location, and was used as a single story store for 13 years. The business grew and additional property was bought from John E. Chesley across the street which included a wheelwright shop which was converted later for use as storage.
Silver and Hall continued their operation for nearly thirty years until selling in 1914. Half of the business was sold to Andrew Silver’s son Harry Silver; the other half to Burt D. Young. Again, this partnership lasted over thirty years, and the store was sold in 1946 to Frederick Burnell. Now known as the Gossville General Store, Burnell sold to Herbert R. Seldon in November of 1950. Seldon ran the store and post office for nearly a decade before selling to Melvin and Rowena Severance in 1959. The old horsesheds became a local Laundromat and the post office assigned a zip code of 03239. The Severance’s sold the store Farrell Hahn in 1971.
Shortly after William Goss bought the Cilley
estate and moved to Gossville, his father Jonathan
sold the family home in the Fowler District to James Yeaton.
The deed specifically mentions a family burying ground on the Goss homestead,
the original home of Samuel Goss Jr. and his wife Abigail Lucas. By deed in
1866, when William Goss sells a house and land next to what was to become the Gossville Store, one of the bounds is a cemetery. Cemetery
stones in the
The Epsom Cemetery Association had to be established about the same time, though its earlier records are lost, a book of minutes survives starting in December of 1912. At that meeting, the constitution of the association was read and it was repeated at their April 1914 meeting when it was decided to revise the constitution, with Alice Silver, Lizzie Bickford and Lavinia Marden chosen to do the revision. It was written into the minutes and signed by all the members on April 14, 1915 as the Gossville Cemetery Association. Officers at the time included President Mrs. Emma Hall, Vice President, Mrs. Carrie Marden, Clerk, Mrs. Alice Silver and Treasurer Mrs. Sadie Edmunds.
Previously, in 1888, Mrs. John F. Hopkinson and son George W.
donated money and had an iron fence with an arched opening built. Her maiden
name remains unknown, but her first name was Delia, born in
The cemetery is primarily a Civil War era burying ground, though
there are some earlier dates that precede the war. Most of these were added to
later monuments as several families had burials from earlier family plots added
to their newer markers in the
The large two family house opposite was originally the
If William Goss moved the blacksmith shop from near where the old
library stands, it would have been one of the first buildings he moved, and
would have been part of the old Cilley tavern
buildings. A blacksmith shop was sold by William to his son John in 1868, along
with his right to use it and the tools during the term of his natural life.
John sold the blacksmith shop back to his father in 1873, ‘standing in
The original wheelwright shop was the old Freewill Baptist church building which in 1870 was made into a store, and the new shop is what was probably the Thomas house. At the time of the sale back to his father, the blacksmith was Eleazer Twombly. William Goss retained ownership until his death, and his son John, as administrator of his estate, sold the land and buildings, one half acre, to Mary I. Sanders. Sanders owned what was later the Thomas House. It would appear that both Goss and Sanders rented the building to various blacksmiths, all who lived in the area. At the same time, Mary I. Sanders mortgaged the same property which in part read ‘seven thousand shingles and one lot of pine boards to finish now in new building and lot, one ox sling complete, one bellows complete and one forge as it is now in blacksmith shop on said land.’ This was in 1889. It would appear that the old blacksmith shop may have been removed and the ‘new building’ used to replace it. This would coincide with the findings of the Gossville Historic District survey which dated the building from circa 1890. During this time Moses Q. Burnham was the blacksmith. The last blacksmith to work the shop was John Boyce, who was there into the 1940’s and perhaps later. The building remained part of the Thomas homestead property.
The Thomas house was originally the James Clark house which was
located very near the old Towle/Colby house on
Mary moved, and while in
The Water Tank House was built by the
The book The Blueberry Express (1985 by the Suncook Valley Railroad Historical Society) gives the following caption for this photo -'A 1930's overview at Epsom shows the freighthouses and (foreground) a shed made from Manchester and Lawrence boxcar #75. The depot was left of the picture.'
The Suncook Valley Railrod sold the
freight buildings to the Merrimack Farmer's Exchange in 1946 with access from
both Route 4 and
Much of the land owned by the railroad,
including the depot, were bought by the Huckin's
family in 1953, with the depot becoming part of the Huckins
Oil Company. Additional buildings were enlarged and added, including some with
Towards Chichester from the old
SARAH BENNETT HOUSE
There is some uncertainty as to where the “Red House’ was on
Billy Bennett died in 1884 and his widow married Sewell Dickinson Batchelder in 1904. The next year she sold the house to Nathan A. Bickford. Nathan Almont Bickford was the son of Alfred Porter Bickford and Elizabeth J. Goss, daughter of William Goss. Nathan died in 1918, and through his widow and estate, the house was sold to Burt D. Young, adjoining his homestead property. Various people occupied the residence over the years, including the Waterhouse family about 1910; John Boyce, blacksmith in the 1940’s; and Ethel Much, a long time school teacher in the 1950’s. The house, now including the Millard Yeaton home, was sold to Melvin Severance by Millard Yeaton in 1966, and sold by him to Richard J. Day in 1970.
Just to the east of the Sarah Bennett house is another home which remained part of the property on which William Goss relocated his family home. It is not known when it was built, but was a rental property, and in the 1930’s was occupied by Allie Bartlett, to whom Burt Young sold the house in 1946. Only the Bennett house is shown on the map of 1892.
Allie Bartlett was the son of George W. and Sarah E. Bartlett, and
married in 1911 Bessie Wasson. She died the next year and he married second, in
1914, Mable Young, the daughter of Burt D. Young and Lottie Dempsey. The house
passed to their daughters Myrtle (Cass), Dorothy (Smith). The property left the
Next to the Billy Bennett house is the house now owned by Bert Young. This house was the Goss place in the Fowler District and formerly stood opposite the house of William Fowler. William Goss moved it out to Gossville and set it up. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
William Goss moved from his childhood home in the Fowler District in 1855 when he purchased the former Cilley property. In 1857 his father sold the homestead to James A. Yeaton, who in turn sold it back in 1862. It was probably around this time that William Goss moved the family home, along with the graves in the family cemetery, to Gossville. His mother, Sally (Yeaton) Goss died in 1864, his father Jonathan in 1872. In 1877 William Goss sells this house and land to James A. Yeaton, who had occupied the house when it was back in the Fowler District. James A. Yeaton's first wife, Martha (Randall), was a sister to William Goss' second wife, Sally R. (Randall), his first wife Maryetta (Abbott) died in 1873. Before Sally married William Goss, she had been married to John R. Crockett, by which they had one daughter, Annie R. Crockett, born 1853. James A. Yeaton's first wife Martha died in 1869, and he married as his second wife, Annie R. Crockett in 1874. He had three children by each. With his wife Martha he had James A. who died young; Edwin R; and John L. who died young. With his second wife Annie he had John C., Helen E. P.; and George H. Yeaton. George H. wrote down many memories of Epsom, including the following:
About the date of the beginning of the Civil War, the farm was sold to James Yeaton, who with his family lived for a number of years, until the death of his first wife in the year 1869. Shortly after her death, he left the farm. In later years, after William Goss had moved the house to the village at Gossville, James Yeaton owned the original Goss house. At the time when William Goss was living on the farm at Gossville, he had the misfortune to break one of his legs. It was at this time that James Yeaton, my father, took over the management of the farm and the help. My father and mother lived in the ell on the west end of the old tavern, and my older brother, John C. Yeaton, was born in that part of the house.
The next owner of the house was Hiram Parker who took out a
mortgage with the Farmers Exchange Bank of
Hiram Parker likely was living in the house by 1907. His wife was
Hiram Parker apparently did not record any deeds, but the property is sold by John E. Chesley in 1908 to Burt D. Young, and the next year he deeds the property to Andrew J. Silver and Charles S. Hall. When Andrew Silver and Charles Hall passed the ownership of their store to Harry Silver and Burt D. Young, the house and land was part of the property. This was in 1914, and two years later, Harry Silver deeded his half to Burt Young, making him sole owner.
Burt D. Young and his wife Lottie M. Dempsey raised their family in this house. In 1946 the house was deeded to Millard J. Yeaton who married in 1922, Burt's daughter Hazel and they moved into the house which was divided into a two family residence. Millard, his son in law, worked for many years for the Silver and Young store. Millard J. Yeaton sold the homestead to Melvin and Rowena Severance in 1966. The original structure has been replaced.
House owned by Mrs. Beckley, now Mrs. Rand. This was formerly the home of old Mrs. Westcott (Stephen, I believe). It was built new and on to from an old shop. It is now owned by the heirs of Moses Burnham. Mr. Westcott was a wheelwright. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
William Goss sold a parcel of land, about one half acre, to
Stephen O. Wescott in 1875, and there were no
buildings mentioned. Wescott may have added the house
at the time. He and his wife were from
Hildreth and his family left Epom
selling the house and land to Fred C. Burnham in July of 1889. Fred and his wife
Estelle may have occupied the house while their children were born, Bessie in
1886, Ernest in 1887, and Dorothy in 1899. The family sold the home in 1891 to
Nancy V. Follansbee of Epsom. She died a widow in
Martha Knowles was the wife of George C. Knowles who owned a busness and land around the Epsom Traffic Circle. They had two daughters, Catherine A., who married Ernest R. Marden in 1905; and Maud E. who died in 1894, unmarried. George C. Knowles died in 1898, and his wife Martha in 1912. As sole heir, Catherine K. Marden sold the house to Moses Q. Burnham whose homestead was right next door, in 1915. The Knowles family most likely rented out the property, as did the Burnhams.
The 1900 US Census includes a Blaisdell family, a rail station agent; in 1910 and 1920, Charles H. Pike and wife Eliza. In 1930 the house was occupied by Lovetta R. Rand.
Charles H. Pike married in 1896, Eliza A. Burnham, sister to Moses
Q. Burnham. Lovetta R. Rand was a daughter of Luke R.
and Mary (Morrine) Plumb. She was living in 1920 in
The Burnham estate was handled by their only daughter, Marion, and
the house was sold to Nellie B. Brown, widow, of Epsom, in 1949. Nellie also
purchased the house on the opposite side of the Burnham homestead. Nellie was
the daughter of John Robinson and Lucinda (Hall)
Dow, who married Charles F. Brown of Lee in
Nellie Brown sold the small home to Laura Bickford in 1958. Laura was the wife of Harold S. Bickford and daughter of Burt and Lottie Young. Her husband Harold died in 1956, and a year after she purchased the house she married as her second husband, Edward E. Beane in 1959. They occupied the home until Laura Beane sold it in 1968 to Donald and Doloris Loven.
North of the Westcott house is the house where Moses Burnham lived, now occupied by his heirs. Morrill Bickford built this house for a blacksmith named Twombly, a Frenchman (Probably about ’75 or ’76). “Billy Burnham” bought it and lived and died there, his widow went to live with her son Fred in Penacook. Moses bought it next I think. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
MOSES Q. BURNHAM HOME
William Goss sold a small tract of land, about threre fourths of an acre to the blacksmith Eleazer Twomby in December of 1876. His name is mentioned in a deed of 1873 when John A. Goss sells the blacksmith shop back to his father as 'occupied by the present time by Eleazer Twombly.' Within the year he places mortgages on the property - one March 12, 1877 to William Goss for just land; another to William Goss for 'one dwelling house new and partly finished;' and a third to Morrill D. Bickford in April of 1878, for 'a house one and one half stories high with an ell new and nearly finished.' It was back in the hands of William Goss in 1882 when he sells the house to Morrill D. Bickford. In just a few months, it is sold to William Burnham, as 'the Twombly place.' This is William E. Burnham, son of Jeremiah G. and Sarah (Worth) Burnham, and his wife Emma Wells.
William E. Burnham married Emma Clara Wells in 1860 and had one son, Fred W. Burnham, who later also buys land and buildings in this part of Gossville. William sells the house to his nephew Moses Quimby Burnham, son of James McCutcheon and Mary Jane (Wells) Burnham. Mary Jane and William E.'s wife Emma were sisters. Moses Quimby and his wife had only one child, a daughter Marion S. Burnham, born in 1894. They may have occupied the buiding before they bought it in 1903. Moses died in 1930 and his wife, Josie B. Shaw, whom he married in 1893, died in 1948. The estate was administered by their daughter Marion who married in 1919, Edward H. Burnham, son of Edward J. Burnham (son of John C. Burnham, son of Jeremiah Gordon Burnham). She sold the homestead to William and Addie Young in 1950, who sold it a few months later to George Chelland. On August 23, 1951, it was bought by Henry Dowst Jr. and his wife Roberta. Henry was the son of Henry and Emma (Dauth) Dowst who married in 1944, Roberta C. Cross. They had two children. The house was sold in 1987.
Frank Hall, section boss for thirty years or so built the house beyond Moses Burnham’s on the same side and lived there until his death. His wife still lives there. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
FRANK HALL HOUSE
This piece of land, in the form of a triangle, was part of the
William E. Burnham property that was later that of Moses Q. Burnham. It was sold
in 1883, without buildings, to Robert A. Edwards. Edwards,
Emma Hall died in 1943, and an heir, Edna M. Staples, along with Sadie Thompson, widow; Gertrude E Simpson, widow; and Leonia Lakeman, sold the house to Emma's sister, Nellie Brown in 1945. She sold the property to Charles N. Huckins in June of 1849. Huckins transfers the property to Robert Cutter in 1950, and Cutter sells the house to Gregory Hurd early in 1952. Gregory and Helen Hurd occupied the premises until sold in October of 1968 to Glenn and Diana Burton.
Just beyond this house (Frank Hall) a road turns eastward and runs up to the Sherburne place. Mrs. Lucy Sherburne, a widow, lived there and taught school in the old schoolhouse which stood where the present two room building stands. There was a path down thro’ the pasture which belonged to the Goss farm (the old Cilley place) now the hotel, through which she used to come to school. Her younger son Bert remained there and Mrs. Sherburne lived with him. Picnics used to be held in a grove known as Mrs. Sherburne’s woods – her husband died with consumption and she brought up her three children, Lula, Horace and Bert.
A still older schoolhouse is said to have stood on the east side just beyond the road to the Sherburne place. My father said he used to play in the swamp between the cemetery and the railroad and chased rabbits there. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
Mark Moses was likely in Epsom by 1762 when William Wallace deeded
30 acres of and, part of lot 95 to his daughter Jane Wallace, who had married
Mark Moses. In 1778 Mark Moses bought addition land in lot number 96 of John
and Ward Cotton Weeks of Greenland. Part of this land was deeded to sons Sylvanus, who married Miriam Young in 1776; and James, who
had married in 1780, Elizabeth Sherburne. According to historian John Mark
Moses, Sylvanus (1754-1832) and James (1758-1819),
succeeded him and added to the estate till it included some two hundred acres,
reaching from the river to the New Orchard road. Sylvanus
lived near the river: James, at A. D. Sherburne's place. James and his wife
Elizabeth had six children: Mark, who married Betsy Cate,
died age 30 in 1811; James who married Betsy Chesley
and died age 29 in 1812; daughter Jane who did not marry; Betsy Sherburne
Moses, who married David Sherburne in 1807; Mary who married John Morrison in
1814; and Sarah who married John Lake of Chichester
in 1814. James Moses died in 1819, and his wife in 1826,
and both are buried in a family cemetery not far from their home. There are no
deeds, though the property next was probably held by James and
It appears that part of the homestead of James Moses was also given to David Sherburne, brother to James M. Sherburne by their father. This land was sold by David to Edwin M .Sherburne, his nephew and son of James M. Sherburne. The description is as follows: A parcel of land with the buildings thereon in Epsom, bounded northerly by the Cross road and land of the heirs and widow of James M. Sherburne, easterly by said land and southerly by land of William Goss, the same being known as the Front field land and pasture and weas field. Also my title in the two barns situated on the James Moses place so called. Meaning this deed to convey said above described premises and all my right title and interest in said Moses place.
This was in 1869, and the next month he sold the same, less mention of the barns, to Horace Bickford. He holds the land for 20 years and sells It back to A. D. Sherburne to once again become part of the homestead farm. This deed is also interesting as it crosses the backyards of much of the Gossville Village homes, it states: a parcel of land in Epsom bounded beginning at the northwest corner of land of Morrill D. Bickford and running southerly by said Bickfords land to land of the heirs of William Goss, late of Epsom; thence westerly by land of said heirs and land of Mrs. Warren Sanders, Hiram A. Parker, Gorham P. Rand, William L. Hildreth, William Burnham and Frank Hall to the Goboro road, thence northerly and easterly by the private way leading from said road to the dwelling house of the heirs of James M. Sherburne and by land of Horace Bickford to the first mentioned bound, containing 10 acres more or less.
The homestead is deeded to A.D. Sherburne in 1889 when the family (Horace B. Sherburne and E. Jennie his wife; Lucy L. Johnson and Frank O. Johnson, husband) sign their interest in the premises consisting of the real estate of James M. Sherburne at the time of his death. Albert David Sherburne and his wife Hattie had one daughter, Nellie F. Sherburne. On her death she deeded the homestead to Alfred and Joyce Bickford.
The next house on the east side of
GEORGE AND GERTRUDE STEVENS RESIDENCE
In 1886 Rufus D. Doe sold his daughter
The deed included the rights to a well ten feet north of the
JOHN C. CLARK HOUSE
Part of the Sylvanus Moses estate was
sold by Arthur C. Locke to John Wallace, trader, of Epsom in 1854. It was part
of lots 96 and 97 and included some 24 acres. In 1858 William Goss, who owned
adjoining property bought as part of the Daniel Cilley
estate, sold Wallace 6 acres with buildings reserving a right of passage to a
pasture 'near the residence of John C. Clark.' John Wallace ran a store
Just before the Judge White house was the Rufus Doe house. Rufus Doe lived there and married Orson or Orison Abbott’s daughter and raised a family there,
Edgar Annis has built a modern house in the field back of the Rufus Doe place. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936
THE RUFUS DOE HOUSE
On the 1858 map this property is occupied by J. and J. Clark. This is John C. Clark and probably his father James M. Clark. This land appears to have been two pieces, one owned by William Goss and sold to John Wallace, the other bought from John Wallace which he acquired from Arthur C. Locke. The Goss land, part of the Cilley estate is of interest. Joseph Cilley, Daniel Cilley’s father, bought this land from William Nason in 1793, part of lot 95 being the land he now lives on.
Exactly where Nason’s house was is lost
now over time, but it does help show the early settling of
Rufus D. Doe was a son of Joseph A. Doe, who owned property
further up the road. He married Viola A. Abbott in 1859, she being from
THE EDGAR ANNIS HOUSE
Edgar C. Annis of Raymond first bought land in Epsom in 1913 from Roland S. Hall, where he and his wife Mary C. lived with a daughter, Gladys M. Annis. He married in Hudson, Mary C. Durant who was a sister the the second wife of Charles Palmer, Ida M. Durant. They had one daughter, Gladys May Annis who was born about 1903. She married in Epsom, Frank W. Wheeler, February 22, 1928, he being the son of Frank W. and Ida B. (Butterfield) Wheeler.
Charles H. Palmer after the death of his wife Myra L. (Doe), married in 1911, Ida M. Durant. Charles died in 1927, and his widow sold land behind the Doe homestead to Edgar Annis in 1930, land and buildings. The deed reserved the right of John W. Edwards to have a right of way to his buildings. His widow sold the property in 1959 to A. Lloyd Hill. It was sold to William and Dorothy Smith in 1959.
Next was the house where “Judge” White lived. Judge White agreed to saw wood for the ___ building the railroad as fast as they could use it. Not quite sure whether he could or not. His daughter married Sam Batchelder and the Batchelder’s lived there. Ed Batchelder later of Northwood renovated the house and kept it for some years. Now occupied by Thayer (Thake). Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
SAMUEL BATCHELDER HOUSE
Samuel B. Batchelder was the son of
Dearborn and Sally (Neally) Batchelder,
born in 1824. He married in
In 1860 the family was living near the
Samuel Batchelder died in 1891, and in 1900 his widow Keziah is alone in the homestead. She died
in 1911, and it appears the house remained unoccupied for a time.
The homestead stays in the family until 1925 when son Edwin sells
to Catherine Thake (not Thayer as given by Benjamin Towle) of
THE JOSEPH A. DOE HOUSE
The Joseph A. Doe family was from
They bought a house from Benjamin G. Howe in June of 1863. Tracing
this house back presents a couple mysteries. Arthur Locke when selling the
former Sylvanus Moses estate sells an acre of land to
Ephraim Gray with the proviso to fence it in. The land is sold May 3, of 1854.
In August of 1856 he sells his house and land to Gorham and Parsons Rand which
owned property nearby. The two deeds have the same description, which is often
the case. In December of 1854, Arthur C. Locke sells a piece of land to Samuel Batchelder, apparently next to that of Ephraim Gray. When
Gorham Rand sells the Ephraim Gray property to Benjamin G. Howe in April of
1863, the description has changed to land with buildings, bordering southerly
The mystery is that the 1850 census shows Ephraim Gray already living on Goboro Road in the same proximity as an S. (Smith) Willey, D.M.Carpenter and William Bickford. The house is not shown on the map of 1858. Additionally, the census also shows a Simeon E. Brown in the area, and this house also does not show of the map of 1858. Interestingly, both the Gray and Brown families move to Northwood by 1860. Perhaps the homes were unoccupied by 1858, and with no families present, not added to the map. Joseph A. Doe added twice to his property buying additional land from William Goss in 1864 and again in 1869. In 1870 he is living in the house with his wife and daughter Susan and her husband Orison Abbott. He and his wife move to Gilmanton and sell their Epsom home in 1872, to their daughter Sarah who had married Allen F. Young. Two years later she sells the house to her brother Thomas J. Doe of Epsom. The selling to family members continued when Thomas mortgages the property to Nancy A. Doe, wife of his brother Charles W. Doe, in 1880. It is not known exactly when Charles and his wife took ownership of the house, but they are living there by the 1900 census, nor is it clear when they gave up ownership. The house next appears in a deed of 1920 when George H. Yeaton sells ‘a tract of land in Epsom formerly belonging to Charles W. Doe'. The sale is made to Elmer H. Palmer. On April 18, 1928, a barn fire destroyed most of the buildings and is when the current house was constructed.
Elmer Hoyt Palmer was a son of Charles Harriman Palmer and his wife Myra L. Doe. Rufus D. Doe was his grandfather, and Joseph A. Doe his great-grandfather. He married in Epsom, April 19, 1913, Esther Louise Waterhouse, daughter of Daniel C. and Mertie (Marden) Waterhouse. Their children included Melba, who never married and died in 1927 aged 11; Leon Charles who married Goldie May Maxfield; Elmer H. who married Mabel V. Jones in 1944; and Myra K. who married in Pembroke in 1846, Henry W. Munroe. Elmer died in 1931 and his wife Esther married Clayton Mason. The house stayed in the family for two more generations.
Alice Emerson lives in an old shop beyond the Doe place. This was not there in earlier days. Isaac Hall lived and died there. He was married to a sister of Arthur Marston. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
The 1892 map shows a J. Hall, which probably should be I. Hall for
Isaac. Little is known of Isaac Hall, but according to the deed of Lizzie U.
Bickford to Charles A. Welch in 1904, his purchase excludes 'one half acre sold
to Isaac Hall'. There is no mention of a building, and no deed found, and is
possible he built the house on this small lot. His sister, Nancy A. Hall, was
the wife of Charles W. Doe who lived next door. Isaac Hall is found on the
voting list in 1893 and vital records shows his death
in Epsom April 14, 1897. He married in
Lizzie U. Fellows sold a small piece of land to Nathan A. Bickford in 1900 which included ‘one 1 story dwelling house containing two rooms below and one chamber.’ In October of 1903 the house is sold to David G. Emerson of Epsom and is mortgaged to Nathan A. Bickford. In 1914 Bickford went to court to obtain the property back, having to serve the children of David, he having died in 1911 (his wife in 1881), Alice Delia and Nelson D. Emerson. David Goss Emerson was from Northwood, son of Richard Fitts and Delis H. (Goss) Emerson. He married in 1869 Ellen M. Lynn. Nathan, having obtained the property back, was sold by his estate to Burt D. Young. He held the property until 1945 when he sold it to David and Mildred Roberts. His wife died in 1957, and her nearest next of kin, Hazel Gertrude Brockway Stevens, quitclaimed the property to the widower David Roberts. The property was next sold to Donald and Veronica Sheridan in 1984. It is not known when the original house was replaced.
Lizzie U. Fellows married in 1866 Josiah F. Fellows, who is seen
in most records as Franklin J. Fellows. He was from
THE STEPHEN RAND FARM
Stephen Rand of Epsom married Betsey Wood Rand, daughter of
William and Sarah Rand of Epsom in April of 1808. It is not known where the
young couple resided during the early years of their marriage. In 1817 he
bought land from Richard Rand, including buildings. The land was the lower end
of Richard’s homestead property and bordered the
Stephen had 6 surviving children with his wife Betsey, who died in
1831. Her death brought yet another suit to Stephen over the guardianship of
his minor children, Rice H. and Sewel Rand, minors
over fourteen years of age and Silver A. and Charles W. under fourteen years,
and one daughter Judith P. Rand. The issue was over their legacy as bequeathed
to their mother by her father, William Rand. Stephen is awarded guardianship
and marries Mary Holmes, daughter of Jeremiah and Elizabeth (Lewis) Holmes. His
second wife died in 1844, and he married third, a Mary Fogg
Rice Rand died in 1872, and the next year Silver A. Rand deeded
his portion of the homestead to his brother Charles W., and Charles deeded his
portion of the William Bickford place to Silver. Charles W. Rand had married
Jennie L. Case, though the date and place is not known. Charles may have become
ill by 1886 as the homestead was deeded to Thomas Rand of Epsom and back to the
Charles’s wife Jenny on the same day. Charles died in February 1886 and the
next month his widow Jennie sold the farm to William Goss. His heirs sold the
property in 1887 to Mary Labonta of
On the west side lived William Bickford. The house is now gone. It
WILLAIM BICKFORD HOUSE
William Bickford was born in 1801, a son of Joseph and Catherine
(unknown) Bickford of Chichester. Joseph’s father,
also Joseph, was a brother to John Bickford of Barnstead, Thomas Bickford of
The next year Richard Rand, through a bond by Joseph and his son
William, gives to Polly Bickford, wife of William, two tracts of land bordering
that of Stephen Rand, north of the old
This land owned by Stephen Rand was sold to him by Richard Rand in 1817, and in December of that year, he sells to his son John, all his land and buildings as long as he is cared for during his natural life. His son John sells the same back to his father in 1820, ‘being all of the homestead occupied by said Richard Rand.’ This is the parcel, the original Richard Rand homestead, that comes to be owned by William and Polly Bickford. In 1845 there is a petition to the Probate Court, asking to approve part of an incomplete conveyance of the property by his father Joseph dated 1837, his father Joseph having died suddenly in 1838.
William married Polly Rand in Epsom in January 1826. She was the
daughter of Richard and Anna (Lake) Rand, a different line of descent from the
William Bickford deeded the homestead to his daughter in 1879, and her husband sold it to Gorham P. Rand June of 1893, shortly after her death. The property became part of the Gorham Rand estate, which was sold by his daughter Cora to Herbert W. Etheridge in 1899. The house is no longer standing.
Gorham Rand lived next on the west side. He had trouble with his wife caused, so it was said, by her propensity to wave to the train as it went past. Aided By Lemuel Towle, she went away leaving her child Cora. Cora grew up there with her father. For many years Gorham used to set pumpkins on the gate post and label them “Lem Towle.” This place now owned by Etheridge. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
John Rand was the sole surviving son and heir of Richard and Mary Rand. Richard first bought land in 1775, part of two lots, 117 and 118. Additionally he bought parts of lots 119 and 120 on which he settled and had a home. He sold part of his homestead to Stephen Rand, and the remainder to William and Polly Bickford. His son John married in 1818 Judith Parsons Gray, and that same year bought part of lot 116 from Tobias T. Rand, land and buildings. There were many transactions that day as John immediately deeded two thirds of the property to his wife Judith, and Sarah Rand, wife of William Rand, deeded the same property to John.
Tobias had purchased the lot from his father William in 1814,
already with buildings. This land appears to part of the original lot William
bought with Samuel Rand from the Mardens in 1774.
John mortgages his house and land to William Parsons of
John and Judith raised a family of seven, including William who moved to Rochester and remained unmarried; Susan who married Albon W. Perkins in 1847; James Gray who married Hannah Spofford and died at age 30; Charles Parsons who married Katherine Page in 1857; Mary G. who married Nathan S. Edmunds of Chichester in 1858 as his second wife, he having married first Hannah Y.Goss, sister to William Goss; Caroline who had a son James E. Rand; and Gorham Parsons Rand who married Theresa M. Hayes.
Judith Parsons (Gray)
In the east side was the Sanborn place. Here Henry [this is incorrect,
it was Jeremiah Sanborn] known as ‘Forty foot” lived. “Forty foot” was so
called because he was very short. He always wore a tall silk hat. He married Shuah (Evans) probably
THE JEREMIAH SANBORN HOME
Names on deeds for this property included Climena
Willey, Climena Parsons and Climena
Sanborn. In 1852 Climena Willey, wife of Samuel S.
Willey, bought from George Robey of Chichester, 27 acres of land, including buildings, part of
lot number 115. Robey had bought the land, already
with buildings, from Joseph Wood in 1849. The property bordered
Five acres of the lot where sold by Climena
B. Parsons of Epsom to Benjamin G. Howe in 1860, being part of her homestead
farm. In 1868, Eunice Little, Noah D. Willey and his wife Lucy A., and Sarah F.
Cummings deed to Jeremiah Sanborn, the same land owned by Climena
Sanborn, late of said Epsom, deceased. These grantor’s
were siblings of Climena, and children of Daniel and
Climena Sanborn died in Epsom September 11, 1868.
She married Jeremiah Sanborn, as her third husband January 16, 1862. Her death
record identifies her maiden name with the last name of her father, Sargent. Her second husband was Samuel S. Willey who she
Jeremiah then, in 1868, owned his wife’s property, and he
remarried in 1869, a Shuah (Evans) whose first
husband was William H. P. Davis. They mortgaged the property in 1875, and added
a small portion of land from Andrew M. Heath that same year. Jeremiah sold land
and buildings, being the same that formerly belonged to Climena
Willey, ‘afterward the wife of Jeremiah Sandborn’
consisting of thirty acres, to Daniel Rowe. Rowe only kept the house about a
year when he sold it of Almah C. Leavitt of
THE CAPT. JAMES SANBORN FARM
Lot 114 on
On September 6, 1862, James Sanborn, age 41, son of Capt. James
Sanborn, enlisted as a Private in Company D, 15th New Hampshire Infantry
The Andrew Heath place on the east side of the road was occupied
by Andrew Heath the elder and his son Andrew. The farm with the barn was sold
to Sanborn, but the house was reserved and Andrew Heath the elder remained
there. His son Andrew died rather young leaving three children I think. Will C.
The Sanborn’s finished off a room or two in the shed adjoining the barn and lived there somewhat. Later the Etheridges bought this. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
THE ANDREW McCLARY HEATH HOUSE
The 1870 US Census for Epsom shows the family of John M. Heath
(with wife Abigail and daughter Mary E.) living in the same house as his son
Andrew McClary Heath with his wife Lucy, daughter
Minnie and son Willie C.. John McClary
Heath was the son of Capt. Simon Ames Heath and Elizabeth McClary,
and grew up in the old tavern on Center Hill. He married in 1823 Abigail M. Cate, daughter of Deacon John and Mary (Towle)
Cate. Together they had three children, Mary E., who
did not marry; Abby J. and son Andrew McClary Heath.
Andrew was a soldier in the Civil War, 12th NH Regiment and was twice wounded.
After the war he resumed farming with his father and teaching school some
winters. He married Lucy Russell Green of
Andrew sells two lots of his farm. First, 40 acres of land, part of the farm formerly owned by William Howe to George H. Rand in November, 1874, and an additional 16 acres by a separate deed the same day. Additionally a third lot of 55 acres was sold to Shuah Sanborn. The sell off of his property continued into January of 1875 when another 70 acres was sold to William Lake of Chichester. Lemuel Towle and Charles H. Carpenter together bought 80 acres from Heath that same month with a right of way near Heath’s house. Again, Lemuel Towle purchases land that was ‘part of the homestead farm of said Andrew M. Heath.’
Another tract of land was sold to Jeremiah Sanborn the end of January 1875. It was described in part as ‘commencing at the highway leading from Chichester Pine Ground to Epsom past the dwelling house of said grantor and about one foot from the south side of the barn and standing opposite said Heath’s house, containing one half acre including the shed.’
Andrew M. Heath died in July of 1875. His widow Lucy within a
month of his death sells the remaining land that he bought of William Howe, to
his father John McClary Heath, including the house,
the property having been left to her by his will. A few years later in 1879,
she passes away. John M. Heath died October 1882 and in his will left the
homestead to his wife Abigail and their daughter, Mary E. Heath. In December of
1882, they sold the remaining homestead to George H. Rand. The Heath's are
On the same side was an old house where “Jim” McGuire lived and the Marston’s once lived there. George Henry Rand acquired this and it burned. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
THE JAMES McGUIRE HOUSE
Little is known of this house. It appears as part of a deed when
William Howe sells land to Andrew M. Heath in 1865, reserving a four acre plot
which he sold to Jim McGuire with buildings. There is no recorded deed for the
transaction. In the 1870 US Census for Epsom, James McGuire is on
In 1867, William Howe sold land, again four acres, to Charles H. Carpenter, with the description that is was the field ‘on which the house now or formerly occupied by True B. Marston stands.’ It is likely the same piece of property. The same description of the boundaries appears in a sale from Charles H. Carpenter to George H. Rand in 1872, being the same premises ‘occupied by James McGuire.’
True B. Marston appears in the 1860 US Census in Epsom on
True B. Marston is also on
On the left (west) was the home of George Henry Rand. This now belongs to an Etheridge. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
THE GEORGE HENRY RAND
William Rand, along with Samuel Rand, bought in Epsom lot 116 in
Epsom in 1774. William sold part of this lot to his son Tobias T. Rand in 1814,
the remainder of the lot stayed in the family for two more generations. He
probably lived on this lot as when it was sold to Tobias it came with
buildings. In 1790 William bought a parcel of land in lot 113 and in 1810 land
in lot 114. He moved to this lot and it became the
A family paper, by one of William’s grandchildren, Samuel G. Rand, son of William’s first son William, records the following account of his grandfather: He went to a neighbor one day, the path through the woods was by spot trees. It snowed, and on his return he could not see the spot trees. He lost his way and wandered about in the woods all night, froze both legs and had them taken off just below the knees. He was a large, powerful man. He is seen often with the middle name Hodskins/Hodgkins/Hodger/Harger.
William Rand deeded his homestead farm in Epsom on lot 113, along
with the parcel he still owned on lot 116, to his son Thomas in 1826, a total
of some fifty acres. Thomas married a Sarah Batchelder
of Loudon, in
Thomas sold the homestead farm to his son George May 7, 1864. The
deed shows the land was bordered on the north by Lemuel
B. Towle, Thomas J. Ingalls and George Grant, on the
east and south on
George Henry Rand married Sarah A. Ordway of Sanbornton about 1857 and raised their family on the family farm. They had nine children of whom four died young – Frank E. and George N. in 1862, Nettie F. in 1865 and Willie B. in 1867. Of the surviving children, Edwin N. born 1865, married Mary A. Breen and moved to Massachusetts, having no children; Frank L. born 1868, who did not marry; George Walter, born 1869 and was unmarried; daughter Jessie C. born in 1870, who married in1892, Marcus H. Gamage; and Richard Gilbert Rand who was born in 1873 and married Virginia Reed and resided in North Carolina. George Henry Rand died in Epsom in 1888 and his wife Sarah in 1890.
Members of the family signed off on various parts of the homestead, including the two younger children who were wards of Mary Tripp of Epsom, George W. and Dick G. Rand. Their portion was sold in 1893 to their brother Edwin. Frank L. Rand and his sister Jessie Gamage turned their portions over to Edwin the same year. Two years later in 1895, the entire homestead was sold to Daniel J. Etheridge by Edwin N. Rand. In 1907 Daniel sold the land and buildings to Ambrose Clifford Etheridge and his wife Etta F. Frost.
The Etheridge’s came to Epsom from
Ambrose was still in Epsom in 1940 with wife Stella and sister Mabel (Crocker). Ambrose died in 1951 and his second wife and widow, Stella, sold the farm to Herbert and Gladys Whiting in 1954 who sold it the same year to Alfred and Barbara Preve, the last family to farm the property. The Preve family left the farm in 1972 and it later became Lazy River Campground.
STEPHEN F. WEEKS HOME
The original house on this lot was probably built by George H.
Rand for his wife just before he entered the Civil War. His father died after
he returned and left him the family home. The small lot with the house was
likely sold, though no deed is on record, and by 1870, according to the census
of that year, it was occupied by Stephen F. Weeks with his wife and family. In
1880 he is in the same location with no wife, his daughter Mary Stafford, son
Walter and two granddaughters, children of his daughter Mary by different
The Ingalls place has been lived in by various transient people and has stood empty a good part of the time. Benjamin M. Towle, 1936.
THE FRANK S. WEEKS HOUSE
Thomas J. Ingalls is living in Chichester
in 1850 with his wife Nancy, and in 1860 is living in Epsom on
As few records exist for him, there are even fewer deeds. The only deed is from 1869 when he allows land for the Suncook Valley Railroad. This at least proves his ownership of the house, and it appears after his death is was sold to Stephen F. Weeks, and according to the 1892 map was occupied by his son Frank S. Weeks. Both Stephen’s and Frank’s house were part of Stephen’s estate which passed to his daughter Mary who sold the house to John J. Clark in 1897. John J. Clark, a son of Samuel J. and Susan (Alden) Clark had married Hattie B. Weeks, daughter of Frank S. and his first wife Maria Brown. John James Clark married Hattie in 1894, and sold the house to Joseph Marston in 1902. Before the end of that year, Frank S. bought the house and moved in with his family and his second wife, Lizzie (Locke), this being her third marriage. Her second marriage was to William Duplaise (Duplace) and their son, Roscoe, married Ella M. Frost in 1913. Frank and Lizzie sold the house to Roscoe and Ella Duplace in 1917.
George H. Yeaton handled the estate of Ella Duplace and sold the home to Gilbert and Ellen Marston of Epsom in 1937. In 1941 they sold the house to George R. Little of Concord who only kept the house four years. Clarence Briggs purchased the house in 1946 and sold it to Maurice and Carolyn Patterson that same year.
The old Lemuel Towle place is owned by Mrs. Mabel Bartlett. Lemuel Towle lived here succeeded
by George who went to the
The Lemuel B, Towle farm is located on parcels of land that were part of
original lot numbers 111 and 112. These lots stretched from
(not to be confused with the Benjamin M. Towle line,
which share the common anestor Jonathan Towle) was a son of Jonathan Towle
and Elizabeth Jenness and a brother to Simeon M. Towle who settled on
Lemuel B. Towle and
Mary Ann Prescott, daughter of John Sherburne and Lydia H. (Drake) Prescott,
where married in 1836. They had four children: Ann Maria who died about age 2;
Charles Clinton who died in 1914, unmarried; Frank Clifton Towle,
who married in 1870 Myra Gault, he died in 1895; and
George Convers who married in 1882, Annie S. Shaw of
Lemuel raised his family on the homestead, which
was located very near the Chichester Railroad depot
and served as a boarding house as the Suncook Valley House. (The first Suncook
Valley House was operated by William Goss in Gossville).
He died intestate and the full settlement of the estate was not fully settled
for some time. Son George Convers left for
Elbridge and Mabel had children MacBeth G.; Eleanor Elizabeth; Milton E., who died young;
Elbridge M. (Jr.) and Carroll F.
The house where Mark Wood lived is partly in Epsom and partly in
THE JAMES WOOD HOUSE
If the 1850 US Census recorded homes in order, they appear at the
end of Goboro as Lermuel B.
Towle, Benjamin Towle, and
James W. Towle. This would place Benjamin in this
house while his son Lemuel has what was called the
Suncook Valley House. It is not known which house was built first, but they
were both in the family in 1850. The 1858 map shows these same homes as L.B. Towle and Misses S. & R. Towle
(his unmarried sisters Sally and Rhoda); James Wood; and James W. Towle, the unmarried brother of Sally and Rhoda and brother
to Lemuel. This middle house was sold by Lemuel B. Towle to James Wood in
1857. The deed describes the lot of 8 acres with buildings, situated partly in
Epsom and partly in Chichester on the northerly side
of the road leading from
James Wood was a son of Joseph and Abigail (Bickford) Wood and was
born in Epsom in 1824. His grandmother was Mary (McCoy) Wood, daughter of
Charles McCoy, and the first child born in Epsom. James never married and died
February 6, 1900, and John H. Dolbeer, administrator
of his estate sold the house to Abraham L. West of
THE JAMES W. TOWLE HOME
The 1858 map showing residences includes one for James W. Towle that is gone by the map of 1892. The house was located on part of four lots, numbers 17, 18, 19 and 20. Each of these lots was 30 acres, and were set aside and chosen by those first 20 proprietors who chose home lots on Center Hill to settle the town. Over time these lots were bought by Joseph Sherburne, and 50 acres from these lots were sold to his son Joseph Jr. in 1791.
The elder Joseph married Olive Pitman sometime before 1769 and
made their home on
By 1835 the land and buildings no longer belonged to Olive Wood, and a portion of the property is in the hands of Benjamin Towle’s son Lemuel in 1851. A flurry of deed activity takes place in August of that year, with Lemuel selling 65 acres with buildings in the fourth range, lots numbered 17, 18, 19 and 20 to James W. Towle. At the same time, there is a bond where James W. Towle is to take care of his sister Rhoda ‘one of the legatees named in the will of Benjamin Towle, late of Epsom, from Lemuel Towle as the executor, that he furnish her with suitable accommodations in his own dwelling house in lieu of her right to use and occupy part of the deceased dwelling house as named in Benjamin Towle’s will’.
James Wood Towle died in 1857, his sister Rhoda in 1863.