Stories about Early People in Fayette, Wayne and Mt. Vernon, Maine from Sprague's Journal

The Descendants of Rev. John Lovejoy in Maine,
& Reminiscences of Early Maine Times
by Josephine Richards, May 1915
printed in John Sprague's Journal of Maine History
Vol 3 #1 pages 112-114


Page 112 ~ Sprague's Journal of Maine History

    Rev.  John Lovejoy came from the north of England and settled in Andover N. H. in the 16th century.  He was the first of the name to come to this country.  At the beginning of hostilities between the British and Americans, his son, Hezekiah, (Captain) and grandson (Lieutenant John), pledged "their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor," in favor of the Colonies.
    At the close of the war they had their lives and honor left, but their fortunes were gone Lieutenant John Lovejoy placed his, belongings, which consisted mostly of a wife and nine children, in an ox team and moved in that manner to Fayette, Maine, from Amherst, New Hampshire.  He bought 200 acres of land for $30.00 and a small frame house for $I2.00, making $42.00 for land and betterments.  Closely
adjoining the land is a pond,, long known as "Lovejoy pond." In late years it has been rechristened as "Sleepy Hollow," by students from Kent's Hill Seminary.  It is related that Great Grandmother Lovejoy would sometimes get lonesome and homesick and would go to the shore of the pond and call to a woman who lived on the other side of the pond who could hear and would answer and go down to the shore and the two women would visit in that manner!

    I have heard my father, who lived in Mt.  Vernon, say that the first settlers who came to that neighborhood, spent their first night under strips of bark leaned against a tree.  I think their name was Blake.
   In those days grist-mills were few and far between, so when my grandfather, Levi French, wanted some grain ground, he put his bag on the back of his horse and rode to Winthrop, ten miles away. On his return journey, one time, he was followed by three bears, but when he reached the bars in front of the house, his good horse didn't wait for them to be taken down, but jumped over, and the bears kept on the road.  At another time he was in the woods making shingles & Grandmother carried his lunch to him and was followed by a bear.  How she escaped I never heard.

Page 114 ~ Sprague's Journal of Maine History

   David French, my father's uncle, youngest son of Abel French of So. Hampton, N. H., was born in 1764.  He married Comfort Ring (b. 1763) in 1783.  She was a poor girl, left an orphan in infancy, given a home by an uncle who exacted from her all the labor she could endure, and for school privilege, she was allowed just to step across the road to the school house, read with her class, and immediately return to her work, however, she was allowed to work in a neighboring family before she was married, long enough to
buy a large fire shovel and tongs, a kettle and spider, with which she began housekeeping, her only cooking utensils for years.  They emigrated to Maine, settling in the western part of Mt.Vernon,
built them a log cabin in the woods and cleared up a farm which they occupied for the long period of seventy years, both dying in 1853.  Their children were William, Polly, Betsey, Sally, Nancy, Lucinda and David.  The first year or two the father worked in Winthrop, a distance of ten miles from home, returning Saturday nights to buy hay to keep the cow and going back to his work Monday morning, leaving poor Comfort to care for the children, milk the cow, tend the corn and drive the bears out of it, as I have been told she did, they were so plenty in those days.
   My grandmother French's uncle, Job Fuller and his wife Elizabeth Wing rode horseback from Sandwich, Mass., to Wayne, Maine, going all the way, or nearly so, from Portland by spotted trees.  She had a child in her arms and he had their household goods.  The next year they buried their goods, for safe keeping and went back to Sandwich to visit their people.  Their daughter Mary was the first white child born in the town, which was first called New Sandwich.
   Simeon Wing was another one active on the side of the Colonies in the struggle with the English and lost his property.  He emigrated to Wayne, Maine, with his family, which included seven sons.  They all settled around the pond which took the name of "Wing  pond." It is now called "Pocassett Lake," I believe. One of the sons, Moses, was a surgeon in the Revolutionary Army. Elizabeth, wife of Job Fuller, was daughter of Simeon Wing. The former chief justice of Maine, Lucilius A. Emery, was a great grandson of Simeon Wing.

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