The French and Indian War lasted from 1754 to 1763 and was the North American phase of the Seven Years' War. The British and French were fighting over claim to the territory between the Appalachians and the Mississippi.
The New England Meetinghouse was the only municipal building in a town. Both worship and civil meetings were held there. It was customary for men and women to sit separately and the town chose a committee once a year to assign seats according to what was paid, age, and dignity.
Mehetable Dwinnell Balch Nelson was born in 1748 and married Cornelius Balch in 1771 and Amos Nelson.
Ruth Dwinnell Holt was born in 1750 and married David Holt in 1771.
Phebe Dwinnell Estey was born in 1755 and married William Estey and resided in Keene, New Hampshire. William also served in Captain Gould's Company.
Abigail Dwinnell was born in 1758.
In 1762 Jacob Dwinnell was seated in church in the third seat below the elders and Mr. Jacob Dwinnell’s wife was in the women’s third seat.
Jacob’s father left him five shillings.
He died on September 16, 1784 in Topsfield of dropsy and is buried with his wife Kezia in Pine Grove Cemetery.
Fort Crown Point was constructed by the French in the 1730s at the south end of Lake Champlain to protect the southern part of New France from British colonial expansion. By the mid-1740s it was an imposing stone fortress. During the French and Indian War, Crown Point was the target of five efforts by the British to wrest control of Lake Champlain from the French.
Mister ( Mr.) was derived from master and Mrs. and Miss were derived from mistress. They indicated people of superior social status in colonial America.
Dropsy or edema, is an abnormal accumulation of body fluids that causes swelling. It is often caused by heart and kidney disease.
The settlement of New Meadows was incorporated as the Town of Topsfield by authority of the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1650. The church "gathered" on November 4, 1663 with the Rev. Thomas Gilbert. The third Meeting House was built on the Common in 1703 with Rev. Joseph Capen as pastor.
Lush forests in Colonial America allowed settlers to build wooden homes.
Copy of Israel’s letter, from the original at Topsfield from Dunnel, p. 21.
(on outside) Mr. To Jacob Donnall Living In Topsfield, N England. post paid.
Camp at Albany June 1st 1760. Ever Honnered father & mother these few Lines Coms with my Duty to you & Love to my Brothers and Sisters. Hopeing through the goodness of god, it will find you all, in as good Health, as it Now Leaves me at this present time, for which I Blesse god. Sr. pray rite to me all opportunity’s you have we are a going to march forward to morrow for Crown point. Sr. I Have Nothing Strange to aquaint you with at present. But it is Very Healthy in the army. and this is all at present from your Dutifull Son,
In Memory of
Mr Jacob Dwinell
who Departed this
Life Seprey 16th
in the 70th year
of his age
Relict of Mr. Jacob Dwinell
died Dec. 29, 1798 ’t. 80.
The Family of Zaccheus Gould of Topsfield
By Benjamin Apthorp Gould
John Gould, b. 1687 Aug. 25; son of John;
m. 1) 1708-9 Feb. 2 Hannah Curtis (d. 1712 Apr. 25);
2) 1715 June 23 Phebe Towne. Will made 1756 Dec. 30, pro. 1762 July 20. Lived in Boxford.
Children by first wife, Hannah:
Martha, b. 1709 Nov. 6 ; m. 1) 1729 John Pritchard; 2
1761 Samuel Perkins; d. 1771.
Mary, b. 1710-11 Jan. 2 ; m. 1731 June 30 Lieut. Thomas
Gould (No. 63); d. 1784 Apr. 29.
John, b 1712 April 9 d. 1712 Apr. 18.
Hannah b 1712 Apr 9 m. 1732 July 9 Samuel Marston (d. 1756-7); d. abt. 1786.
Children: Anna and Elizabeth, d. in infancy (1741 Sept. 17 and 23).
Children by second wife, Phebe:
Phebe, b. 1716 Sept. 22 ; m. 1755 Feb. 25 Eliezer Gould
(No. 87), being his second wife.
Kezia, b. 1718 May 10; m. 1739 Jacob Dwinell; d. 1798.
John, b. 1720 Apr. 6; d. in infancy.
Richard, b. 1722 Apr. 20; m. 1) 1744 ?
2) Roxanna Burnham;
3) Ruhamah; lived in New Hampshire.
Stephen, b. 1724 July 6; m. 1747-8 Jan. 18 Hannah Perkins; d. 1798.
Abner, bapt. Boxford 1726 June; died young.
Ruth, b. 1727 Sept. 16; died young.
Jacob, b. 1728-9 Feb. 6; m. 1751 Elizabeth Towne; d. 1809.
Esther, b. 1732 Aug. 10; m. 1751 Jonathan Towne.
Amos, b. 1735 Aug. 13; m. 1759 Huldah Foster; d.1772.
During Shays' Rebellion the rebels were mostly farmers angered by excessive debt and taxes. Failure to repay debts could resulted in imprisonment in debtor's prison or the state claiming property.
The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783) was between the Kingdom of Great Britain and the 13 colonies which became the newly formed United States.
Smallpox is caused by of two viruses: Variola major and Variola minor. Symptoms include a rash and blisters. The mortality rate for V. major is 30–35% and for V. minor is about 1%. Long-term complications include scars, blindness, and limb deformities.
Diseases have transformed history and the lives of our ancestors.
from Genealogical and Personal Memoirs by William Richard Cutter
Jacob Dwinell, son of Dr. Michael Dwinell. born January 31. 1715-16, died September 16. 1784. He resided in Topsfield in his father’s house. and was called husbandman. His will was dated September 2. 1784. and his son John was executor.
He married, December. 1739. Kezia Gould, born May 10. 1718. died December 29. 1798. daughter of John and Phebe (Towne) Gould, of Topsfield.
1. Israel. born March 2. 1740. died November 16, 1760. in the French and Indian war.
2. Ruth, born 1743. died September 13. 1743.
3. Jacob, born August 6, 1745. married. December 12, 1769. Joanna Clark, widow; was in the revolution.
4. John. born June 15. 1747
5. Mehitable. born April 30. 1748. married (first), April 4, 1771, Cornelius Balch; (second). November 7, 1799. Amos Nelson.
6. Child, died September 2. 1749.
7. Ruth. born February 8, 1751, married. December 13. 1781. David Holt.
8. Child. died March 13. 1753.
9. Phebe, born June 17. 1755. married William Estey.
10.Abigail, baptized July 1. 1758. died June 6,1759
John Dwinell, son of Jacob Dwinell, born in Topsfield, June 15, 1747, died in 1818 of a carbuncle on the shoulder, aged seventy-one years. He married, February 5, 1771, Esther Richards, daughter of Joseph and Mary Richards of Southborough. Her father died when she was an infant, and at the age of ten she was brought by her mother (in accordance with her father's wish) to live with his sister, Esther Estey, wife of Aaron Estey, of Topsfield.
Her father was son of Crispus and Sarah (Collins) Richards of Lynn and grandson of John Richards, a soldier in King Philip's war. Esther attended the school which was held in the house in which her aunt lived on Witch hill, and the school-master's ferule [a flat stick or ruler used for punishing children] and tobacco box is still in the possession of the family.
She was twenty-three years old when she was married to John Dwinell by Rev. John Emerson, who is said to have pronounced them the handsomest couple he ever married. Esther Estey's granddaughter Lydia held the light for her to put on her wedding cap. John Dwinell took his bride to the house built by his father Jacob of the oak trees from the hill in the rear. At that time the elm in front of the house was full grown.
Esther Dwinell died October 31, 1857, aged one hundred and one years, eight months and ten days. Her Aunt Esther, with whom she lived, attained the age of over a hundred years, and her brother John was ninety-seven and her sister Hannah ninety-seven years old when they died.
Two children of Mr. and Mrs. Dwinell died with smallpox.
1. Infant son born December 24, 1771, died young
2. Esther, baptized April 25, 1773, died August 11, 1777, of dysentery
3. John born 1776 died of small pox. October 16, 1777
4. Mehitable, born Mary 4, 1777, died October 18, 1777, of small pox.
5. Esther, born April, 1779, married, 1802 Moses Wildes, Jr. of Topsfield.
6. Infant, born 1780, died young.
7. John born 1782.
8. Jacob born 1786 baptized September 1787; died of dysentery 1788
John Dwinnell was was in the revolution in Captain Joseph Gould's company. Colonel John Baker's regiment, and answered the Lexington alarm, April 19. 1775.
Shays's Rebellion was an armed uprising in Massachusetts in 1786 and 1787. Daniel Shays led four thousand rebels (Shaysites) in rising up against perceived economic injustices.
Daniel Shays and Job Shattuck
from Bickerstaff's Boston Almanack
King Philip’s War was a bloody and costly series of raids and skirmishes in 1675 and 1676 between the Native American people and the colonials. King Philip was the Native American leader Metacom.
Esther Richards Dwinel, the wife of Jacob Dwinell’s son John came to live in Topsfield with her aunt Esther Esty, the widow of Daniel Esty when she was ten years old. Esther Esty lived to be over 100 years old as did Esther Dwinel. Esther Dwinel told the story of Dr. Michail’s seven wives. (Dunnel, p. 31)
Died October 31, 1847.
t. 101 yrs. & 8 mos.
For all flesh is grass,
and all the glory of man
as the flower of the grass;
The grass withereth and the flower thereof falleth away
died July 17, 1818.
The time draws nigh, when from the clouds
Christ shall with shouts descend;
And the last trumpets awful voice
The heavens and earth shall rend.