Genealogical and Family History
STATE OF MAINE
Compiled under the editorial supervision of George Thomas Little, A. M., Litt. D.
LEWIS HISTORICAL PUBLISHING COMPANY
[Please see Index page for full citation.]
[Transcribed by Coralynn Brown]
[Many families included in these genealogical records had their beginnings in Massachusetts.]
One of the officers in the army of William the Conqueror at the battle of Hastings whose name is preserved on the roll of survivors in Battle Abby is le Poer, and English history from that time gives an honorable place to the name. According to Herald's College, Richard le Poer, high sheriff of Gloucestershire, in 1187, "was killed while defending the Lord's day." As early as 1711 when King Henry II invaded Ireland he gave to Sir Roger le Poer an "English knight" a chief command and for "distinguished services rendered" the crown bestowed on him large tracts of land. Henry reserved the cities in the county of Waterford for the crown, and the British Parliament had many of the descendants of Sir Roger le Poer in that body, and as his descendants and descendants of native Celts who took the name of the estates, as was the custom of that day, the name Poer became very numerous in that county. In 1222, among those possessed of landed rights as given in the Domesday of St. Paul, William and Walter Poer (Power) appears frequently.
Coming to the name in New England, "The Genealogies and Estate of Charlestown, 1629-1818, Boston, 1879," gives the name of John Power, hosier, who married Sarah and had issue:
Peter, born 4 (9) 1643.
John Power buys of W. Mirable ten acres and Sarah (wife) by power of attorney sells to G. James, house and five acres in 1645. As no further record of John, Peter or Sarah appears, it is reasonable to infer that John, the hosier, returned to England, and his wife, after selling the real estate, also returned with her son Peter and the name was not perpetuated in America.
Thomas Power, a blacksmith, is the next of the name to appear in Charlestown. He married Abigail Fosketh, Feb. 17, 1714-15.
Eliza, John, Thomas, Abigail and Battery.
He owned houses, lands and a slave, but the family in the male line does not appear after 1800.
The name Walter Power appears in the Middlesex county record, of which the town of Charlestown was a part, in 1654, as a boy of fourteen years who on "ye eleventh days of ye first month 1660" was married to Trial, daughter of Deacon Ralph and Thankes or Thankeslord Sheppard at Malden. Tradition in the family preserved in manuscript records that Walter landed at Salem, Mass. Bay Colony, in 1654, and that he married the daughter of a London goldsmith. Ralph Sheppard came from Stepney, London, July, 1635, aged twenty-nine, with his wife Thankes, aged twenty-three, and daughter Sarah, aged two, and settled in Weymouth and later removed to Malden, Middlesex county, where he held office as deacon of the parish church and died aged ninety years, Sep. 11, 1693, as gravesmen in the cemetery at Malden attests. The fact that Stepney Parish is in London, Essex, and that both William and Walter Power appear among the family names of Essex, and that Lord Littleton, for whom Littleton, Middlesex county, Mass., was named, member of parliament for Essex, gives color to the claim of that section as his birthplace.
We therefore assume as follows:
(I) Walter Power was born in 1639, probably in Essex, England, was married March 11, 1661, to Trial, daughter of Deacon Ralph and Thankes Sheppard, who was born Feb. 10, 1641, and that Walter Power died Feb. 22, 1708. He probably had few educational advantages, but had strength and will to establish a home for himself and family. Trial (Sheppard) Power, his wife, was evidently the teacher of her sons, who took prominent places in the affairs of the town in which they lived.
Walter an Trial Power, when they became man and wife, settled on a tract of land at Concord Village, Middlesex county, Mass., which subsequently became known as Littleton. It adjoined the Indian town of Nashobe, which his father-in-law, Deacon Ralph Sheppard, purchased of Lieut. Joseph Wheeler, the ancestor of the general of that name, prominent in the civil war as an officer of the Confederate army, and in the Spanish-American war as a major-general in the U. S. army.
Walter Power built a house on the north side of Quagany Hill, about half a mile from the garrison house and a little distance from Nazog Pond. In 1694 he added to his possessions by purchasing of Thomas Waban and other Indians, one-fourth of the town of Nashobe.
Walter Power died Feb. 22, 1708, and his widow survived him many years and both were buried in the older "Powers burying ground" on the Concord road where the site of the old Powers house and the raceway of the Powers saw mill were yet discernble in 1884.
1. William, born 1661, married Mary, daughter of John and Hannah Bunk (or Bank), of Chelmsford, and died March 16, 1710. As the eldest son, he inherited the home place with saw mill and undoubtedly found burial in the family plot, the stones marking the graves having however been destroyed.
2. Mary, born 1663, married Jan. 1, 1681, Lieut. Joseph Wheeler (1660-1706), who was probably a son of Lieut. Joseph Wheeler, later Captain Wheeler.
3. Isaac, born 1665, married April 14, 1701, Mary, daughter of John Poulter and widow of Samuel Winship Sr. Isaac Power was captain of the militia, a petitioner for the incorporation of the town, moderator of the first town meeting, held various town offices for many years, was twice a member of the general court and was colonial agent for conveying lands. With his brother, Walter, he was on the pew committee to convey pew-rights in the meeting house when completed in 1723. His wife and the wife of Benjamin Shattuck, the first settled minister of the town, were of the same family.
4. Thomas, born 1667, married (first) Elizabeth, whose maiden name is not recorded and who died May 25, 1698, and (second) Mary, daughter of Nathaniel Harwood of Concord, Oct. 25, 1702. Mary Harwood was born Feb. 5, 1676. Thomas Power lived on the westerly borders of the town of Littleton, adjoining the town of Harwood and he lived in Wellington, Hardwick, Quobben and Greenwich, and his descendants were residents of Greenwich, Enfield and Pittsford, Vermont, and the best known of them was Hiram Powers, the sculptor, who was a son of Stephen and Sarah Perry and grandson of Dr. Stephen and Lydia Drew, of Woodstock, Vermont.
5. Daniel (q.v.), born May 10, 1669.
6. Increase, born July 16, 1671, married Hepzibah, daughter of William and Mary Sawyer, of Bolton (S. P.)
7. Walter Jr., born June 28, 1674, married Dec. 16, 1696, Rebecca, daughter of Joseph and Martha (Gould) Barrett, of Chelmsford. Rebecca Barrett was born July 4, 1673, died in 1754. Walter Power Jr., on marrying, located in the town of Littleton, west of Spectacle Pond and adjoining the town of Groton, near "Brown Hill," and after the death of his brother William, he appears to have been the owner of the old plan in Concord Village. In 1723, in awarding the pews, the second "pew place" was awarded him as paying "next to the largest tax." In May, 1853, the old gravestone of "Rebekah in ye eightieth year of her age was found freshly turned over by the plow of Mr. Reed."
8. Jacob, born Dec. 15, 1679, marriage published Sept. 18, 1703, with Sarah Meriam, who died April 15, 1705, and he married (second) Edith, daughter of Jonathan and Leah (Guild) Adams, of Chelmsford and Littleton, and a descedant of Henry Adams, of Braintree. She was born Dec. 1, 1683. Jacob Power lived in Littleton on the south side of the Harvard road near the town line and adjoinin lands of Jonathan Adams, his father-in-law. He held minor town offices.
9. Sarah, born Feb. 8, 1683, married April 8, 1702, Moses Barron.
(II) Daniel, fourth son and fifth child of Walter and Trial (Sheppard) Power, and who adopted the spelling of the surname Powers, was born in Littleton, Mass., May 10, 1669. He married April 8, 1702, Elizabeth, daughter of Jonathan Whitcomb, by whom he had five children. He became owner of a piece of land on the westerly border of the town of Littleton about one mile in width and extending the whole length of the westerly line of the town. His children were probably all born in Nashobe or Littleton, although some of them are found recorded in Groton, the adjoining town.
1. Daniel, born April 21, 1703, married Mary ____, and died in 1789.
2. Jonathan, born 1704, married Hannah Sawyer.
3. Oliver, born 1705, died in the Cuban war.
4. Peter (q. v.), born 1707.
5. Hannah, born Feb. 22, 1709, married Barnabas Davis.
His wife Elizabeth died after Feb. 22, 1709, and he married as his second wife, in 1711, Martha Bates.
Children of 2d wife:
6. William, born April 12, 1712, lived in Woodstock, Connecticut.
7. Sepheron, born 1714.
8. Timothy, born 1716, died in the Cuban war.
9. Jerahmeel, born Feb. 18, 1718, married Eunice Bennett. He was a business man of prominence in Shirley, was commissioned by Governor Wentworth lieutenant and served in the French and Indian war, and later in life removed to Leicester, Vermont, where he lived for many years, but died at the home of the daughter in Seneca, New York, after he had passed the eighty-sixth year of his age.
10. Martha, born 1720, married a Mr. Barnes.
11. Abigail, born 1727, married ____ Wheeler.
12. Tryphena, married Dec. 8, 1742, Samuel Flood, of Andover, and died Aug. 8, 1758.
(III) Captain Peter, fourth son of Daniel and Elizabeth (Whitcomb) Powers, was born in Littleton, Mass., in 1707. He spent his boyhood days on his father's farm, and in 1728 married Anna Keyes and removed to Dunstable, locating in that part of the town now known as Nashua, and he was commissioned captain of the militia by Governor Wentworth. During the summer and fall of 1730 he made the first clearing and built the first house in what has become Hollis, New Hampshire, and he removed with his young wife and two children, Peter and Stephen, through the unbroken forest, and became the first settler of what became a thriving own. Here Anne, their first daughter, was born, and first child of English descent born in this town. In 1738 there were forty families in the present limits of the town and he joined the other settlers in petitioning for a town charter. He was prominent in town offices and led in the building of a meeting house and securing a preacher. In 1754 he headed an expedition to explore the Connecticut River Valley, but his report, owing to Indian troubles, was never published, but has been preserved by his descendants and the Rev. Grant Powers cause it to be deposited in the rooms of the Conn. Historical Society at Hartford.
In 1755 he raised a company of men mostly from Hollis to march under Colonel Joseph Blanchard against the French at Crown Point, and in the company were: Jonathan, Levi, Stephen and Whitcomb Powers, all of Hollis, the last three being sons of Captain Peter. In 1758 Whitcomb and Thomas Powers, of Hollis, joined the expedition against Louisburg.
Captain Peter Powers died soon after the close of the French and Indian war.
Children of Capt. Peter & Anna (Keyes) Powers, of Coos county, N. H.:
1. Peter, born in Nashua, Nov. 29, 1728, became a clergman at Haverhill, N. H., and Deer Isle, Maine; died in January, 1802.
2. Stephen, born in Nashua, Oct. 28, 1729, married Jan. 5, 1757, Lucy Cummings, who died July 15, 1775, at Hollis, and he died at Hollis seven days before the death of his widow, the date bein July 8, 1775.
3. Anna, born in Hollis, N. H., March 9, 1732, married Benjamin Hopkins, a wealthy farmer of Milford, N. H., and died in 1813.
4. Whitcomb, born Oct. 10, 1733, married (first) Mary Dollover, May 20, 1755, and (second) Elizabeth Lawrence, in 1759. He lived in Brookline, N. H., and possessed remarkable physicial strength, and of his exploits in the use of his strength there are many anecdotes.
5. Phebe, born Feb. 5, 1735, married April 8, 1756, Joseph Bates, and they resided in Jeffrey, N. H., where she died at an advanced age, leaving children.
6. Alice, born Dec. 30, 1736, died in Hollis, N. H. Feb. 13, 1825.
7. Levi (q.v.), born June 3, 1739.
8. Nahum, born April 11, 1741, married (first) Mary Wheat, Feb. 7, 1769, and died at Malahide, Upper Canada, and for his second wife he married ____ Cummings, a widow, and sister of Lucy Cummings, who married his brother Stephen.
9. Francis, born July 15, 1742, married May 4, 1763, Elizabeth Cummings, and died in Hollis, N. H. in 1796.
10. Fanny, born April 19, 1744, died young.
11. Phillip, born May 20, 1746, died 1763.
12. Samson, born March 22, 1748, married Aug. 4, 1774, Elizabeth, daughter of Benjamin Abbott, of Andover, and widow of Mr. Nutting. She was born Feb. 22, 1751, and died Feb. 19, 1836.
13. Fanny, born March 22, 1749, lived in Dublin, N. H., but late in life removed to Potsdam, New York.
(IV) Levi, fourth son and seventh child of Capt. Peter and Anna (Keyes) Powers, of Coos county, N. H., was born June 3, 1739, married and removed to Sidney, Kennebec county, Maine, where he was a prosperous farmer, and had a family of ten children.
1. Anne, born April 16, 1766, married Benjamin, son of Joseph and Emma (Farnsworth) Weston, of Concord, Mass., who was born Feb. 3, 1765, died April 7, 1851.
2. Levi, born March 20, 1768, married Margaret Hood, and their daughter, Betsey Powers, married Joseph Noble and had several children, and their son, Jonathan, married Belinda Adams.
3. Mary, born March 28, 1770, died unmarried in 1858.
4. Phannier, born June 4, 1772, married J. Goodwin, of Canaan, Maine.
5. Phillip (q. v.), born March 12, 1774.
6. Francis, born April 1, 1776, married in 1810, Joanna Brown. He was a Baptist preacher in Anson, Maine, wehre he died in Dec., 1849.
7. Peter, born June 13, 1778, died in 1788.
8. Adam, born Aug. 15, 1780, married in 1808, Keziah Rogers, who died July 15, 1823; Adam Powers died Aug. 25, 1841.
9. Samson, born 1783.
10. Phebe, born March 21, 1786, married Thomas Symonds, of Canaan, Maine.
(V) Phillip, second son and fifth child of Levi Powers, of Sidney, Maine, was born March 12, 1774. He married Lucy Hood and lived in Sidney, Maine.
1. Hiram, born in 1804, married in 1829, Electa Tozier; resided in Pittsfield, Maine, and dided in 1843.
2. Annie, born in 1806, died unmarried in 1835.
3. Levi, born 1808, married in 1845, Jane Brittain, and resided in Aroostook county, Maine.
4. Arba (q.v.), born April 11, 1811.
5. Phillip, born in 1814, married Dec. 25, 1839, Saphronia Mathews, b. July 24, 1818; they lived in West Pittsfield, Maine.
6. Urbane, born 1817, married Jefferson Spaulding, of Canaan, Maine, had two children who removed to California; she died in Sept., 1852.
7. Abner Prescott, born in 1824, married in 1850, Sarah Fish, of Hartland, Maine. Abner Prescott Powers was sheriff of Somerset county, Maine.
(VI) Arba, third son and fourth child of Philiip and Lucy (Hood) Powers, was born in Sidney, Maine, April 11, 1811. He was married in the spring of 1836 to Naomi Mathews, born in July, 1813. They lived in Pittsfield, Somerset county, Maine.
Children, b. in Pittsfield:
1. Llewellyn (q.v.), (1836-1908).
2. Cyrus M., born June, 1838, married in 1865, was a lawyer in Aroostook county, had a family, including a son Arba Eugene.
3. Gorham, born Sept. 14, 1840, married Nov. 7, 1865, Abbie M, Ireland; was a lawyer in Granite Falls, Minnesota, and served in the state senate in 1879, and is now district judge.
4. Amos, born July, 1842, married in 1870, removed to California where he had a family, and engaged in teaching.
5. Sceva, born in May, 1844, engaged in mining at Gold Hill, Nevada.
6. Cassius Clay, born Feb., 1846, graduated at Bowdoin, A.B., 1869, became a practising lawyer in Boston, Mass., and married Annie Orr.
7. Hortense B., born Feb., 1848, was a teacher in Oakland, California, where she died March 31, 1879.
8. Don Arba Horace, born Dec. 8, 1850, graduated at Bowdoin, A.B., 1874, became a lawyer in Houlton in partnership with his brother Llewellyn and Frederick Alton and in Newport, Maine, and married Dec. 8, 1878, Frances Shaw.
9. Loantha A., born May 23, 1853, died Nov. 15, 1869.
10. Frederick Alton (q.v.), born June 19, 1855.
Arba and Naomi (Mathews) Powers were ambitious for the welfare of their children. They gave them all a thorough education, and six afterward became prominent lawyers.
(VII) Llewellyn, eldest child of Arba and Naomi (Mathews) Powers, was born in West Pittsfield, Somerset county, Maine, Dec., 1836. He received his preparatory school training at the Corinna Academy. He then matriculated at Waterville College and passed through his freshman and sophomore year when he left to take a course in law at the Albany Law School, where he was graduated LL.B. 1860. He was admitted to the bar of the state of New York the same year, and in Jan., 1861, was admitted to the bar of Maine and began the practice of his profession in Houlton, that state. He was at once recognized as a coming lawyer, and was elected prosecuting attorney for the county of Aroostook in 1865, retaining the position for six years, 1865-71. He was collector of U. S. customs for Aroostook district, 1868-72. In 1868 he was admitted to practice in the U. S. district and circuit courts, and in 1888 to the Suffolk bar in order to practice in Boston, Mass. His brothers, Don Arba Horace and Frederick Alton, became his law partners in Houlton.
He represented the fourth congressional district of Maine in the forty-fifth congress, 1877-79, having previously represented his district in the Maine legislature in 1874-75-76. He was again a representative in the state legislature 1881-92-95, serving as speaker of the house in 1895. He was elected governor ofo Maine in 1896 by a majority of 48,696 and re-elected in 1898 by a majority of 28,000, the former being the largest majority ever given a candidate for governor. He served as governor of Maine 1897-1901, and in April, 1901, was elected representative from the fourth congressional district of Maine to the fifty-seventh congress to complete the term of C. A. Boutelle, who had resigned his seat in that congress by reason of ill health. He was returned to the fifty-eighth, fifty-ninth and sixtieth congress, serving on the committees of banking and currency, on elections and on territories.
He died in 1908 before the close of the sixtieth congress.
Governor Powers received the honorary degreeof A.M. from Colby University (Waterville) in 1870, and later that of LL.D. He early affiliated with the Masonic fraternity and received the chapter degrees, and was a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
His large holdings of timber and other lands in Aroostook county brought him in relationship with the banks and other financial and manufacturing corporations of Maine, and he served as president of the Farmers' National Bank of Houlton and as a director in various other banking institutions.
He was married in 1863 to Jennie, daughter of Benjamin Hewes, of Levant, Maine, by whom there were no children. He married (second) Dec. 25, 1886, Martha G., daughter of Luther E. and Eliza L. (Garvin) Averill, of Lincoln, Maine.
Walter A., Martha Pauline, Doris Virginia, Ralph A. and Margaret L.
Mr. Powers died July 28, 1908.
(VII) Frederick Alton, youngest child of Arba and Naomi (Mathews) Powers, was born at the old homestead in West Pittsfield, Somerset county, Maine, June 19, 1855. He receive his early school training in the local schools of his native town and was graduated at the Maine Central Institute, Pittsfield, in 1871, and from Bowdoin College, A.B., 1875. He studied law in the office of his brother, Llewellyn, in Houlton, and was admitted to the Maine bar in 1876. He was associated with his brothers, Llewellyn and Don Arba Horace up to 1891 when he was appointed judge of the supreme judicial court of Maine and he resigned from the bench March 31, 1907. He did not re-engage in the practice of law, but gave his time to the management of his extensive interests in Aroostook county.
He married (first) Jan. 7, 1879, Mary, daughter of Sylvanus Hussy, of Houlton.
Llewellyn H. and Paul H., both graduates of Bowdoin College. Their mother died May 28, 1901, and Judge Powers married (second) Virginia Hewes, of Danforth, Maine, and by her he had no children.