Cousin Clarence, the Monadnock Bachelor Farmer

While looking for more information on George Smith Harrington, the machinist from Woodstock, Connecticut who married both of great great grandfather Leonard Smith’s sisters (not at the same time), I found a brief excerpt from “Annals of the Grand Monadnock”, a book published in 1936. One section of the book tells, lot by lot, the history of various properties on the mountain. The excerpt provided by Google recounts George’s purchase of a lot on the eastern slope of Monadnock from the estate of Joseph Eveleth in 1868, and notes that “he lived there until he died in 1896. He was succeeded by his son Leonard W. Harrington who married Eugenie Ann Burpee, a daughter of his next door neighbor. Their children still own the property.”

The property was a portion of lot 11, range 1, which is located at the end of Burpee Road. The road was named for the owners of the rest of lot 11, the Burpee family. George and Leonard farmed 140 acres, and had 400 sugar maples, according to the 1885 Cheshire County Gazetteer. George died in 1916, and his wife Margaret followed soon after. Leonard and his wife Eugenie Ann eventually raised six children on the farm- five daughters and a son. By 1920, three of the daughters had moved on, but Leonard’s son Clarence had stayed on, along with sisters Eva and Hannah.

By 1936, when the “Annals” were written, Leonard and Eugenie’s “children” were getting on in years- Clarence was 55, Hannah 61, and Eva 60. None had married. Six years later, when Clarence was required to register for the “Old Man’s Draft” in World War II, he and Eva were apparently still living on the farm, although it may not have been a working farm any more. Clarence listed his employer as Charles Ernest Chamberlain of Jaffrey Center. (Chamberlain, born in 1896 was also required to register for the draft- he lists his employer as “L. H. Wetherell, 1A Acorn St., Boston”. Lawrence H. Wetherell was a wealthy partner in a steel company, Wetherell Brothers. He and his wife owned what had been the Cutter place in Jaffrey Center, which served as their summer residence. Chamberlain was the caretaker, so Clarence probably worked as a handyman there.)

Dublin1892AtlasMapDetailYou can see the location of the Harrington farm on the map- click on the image to enlarge it. The map is from the 1892 New Hampshire Atlas, and is oriented with North to the right, rather than the top. Just below “Monadnock Mountain” is the label for the farm of “L.W. Harrington”. Just to the east (down) is the Burpee place.

Another interesting item on the map is the label “Mrs. E. Cogswell” that appears in the bottom right of the map- it marks the residence of Elmira Cogswell, widow of Rufus Cogswell, who died in the Civil War. Rufus was the brother of Lydia (Cogswell) Smith, wife of Leonard Smith, who was the brother of George Smith Harrington’s wives.

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