XX indexVermont  




Kirby is a small, irregularly outlined township located in the eastern part of county, in lat. 44º 29' and long. 5º 4', bounded on the northeast by Burke and the county line, south and southeast by the county line, southwest by St. Johnsbury and west by Lyndon. It was granted by Vermont, October 20, 1786, and chartered October 27, 1790, to Roswell Hopkins, by the name of Hopkinsville, containing 11,284 acres. Subsequently, however, 2,527 acres, known as Burke Tongue, were added from Burke, and the name altered, in 1808, to Kirby. 

       The soil of Kirby, being generally free from stone and consisting of a rich gravelly loam, is well adapted to the raising of all kinds of grain and grass, and in most parts to the growing of Indian corn successfully. With the exception of a range of mountains in the eastern part, the town is susceptible of cultivation; and even those mountain lots, after being cleared of their heavy growth of timber, afford the best of pasturage. Indeed, there is very little waste land in the town. The low lands that in the early settlement were considered too wet and swampy for cultivation, are now the most productive and valuable.  The township is well watered with springs and brooks that rise among the hills, and wind their way through the valleys to the Passumpsic and Moose rivers, the latter of which passes through a corner of the town. Along its borders are a few excellent farms, but no sites for mills. Near the center of the town there is quite a mountain-ridge, which somewhat divides the business. Here is also a small pond, from which issues Pond brook. In the eastern part of the township is an excellent quarry of granite. 

       In 1880, Kirby had a population of 398 souls. In 1886 it had six school districts and five common schools, employing eleven female teachers, to whom was paid an average weekly salary, including board, of $4.39. There were eighty-six scholars, five of whom were attending private schools. The entire income for school purposes for the year was $754.75, while the total expenditures were $738.98, with Miss N. A. Russell, superintendent. 

       The exact date of the first settlement made here is not known. Theophilus Grant and Phineas Page removed thither about 1792, locating near the town line, adjacent to St. Johnsbury. In 1800, Jonathan Leach came into the northern part of the town, then called Burke Tongue, and cut his first tree. He was soon joined by Josiah Joslin, Jude White, Jonathan Lewis, Ebenezer Damon, Asahel Burt, Antipas Harrington, and others, mostly from Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Mr. Leach made his first "pitch " in the town of Burke, purchasing a lot of land near the center of that town. While absent, however, engaged in removing his family from Massachusetts to their new home, the proprietors obtained a new draught of the town, bringing his number some five miles to the southward of the spot where he had commenced clearing, in an unbroken wilderness. Procuring, on his return, the assistance of a neighbor as a guide, he started out in quest of his number, which, after some difficulty, he succeeded in finding. In this new location he commenced his labors, in the month of April, 1800.  He erected, at once, a log house, though, as the reader may readily imagine, “under difficulties,” inasmuch as he was destitute both of shingles and boards, not to mention numerous other articles usually deemed indispensable in convenient and successful house-building. Into this rude structure, and while its gable-ends were still open, he moved his family, consisting of a wife and two small children. Addressing himself now to clearing away the forest about him and preparing the soil for cultivation, he succeeded the first year in raising a sufficient amount of grain to meet the wants of his family. By another year, without the aid of a team, he had subdued enough of the forest to gather in 150 bushels of wheat. By the third year, he had put up a framed barn, the building in which was taught the first school and held the first religious meeting in town. The first saw-mill in town, however, was built by Mr. Leach. 

       The town was organized on the 8th of August, 1807, and on the 29th of the same month the first town-meeting was called to elect town officers. Selah Howe was chosen moderator; Jonathan Lewis, town clerk, which office he held seventeen years; Benjamin Easterbrooks, Joel Whipple and Arunah Burt, selectmen; Philomen Brown, constable; and Josiah Joslin, town representative. 

       Theophilus Grout, a lineal descendant in the fifth generation from Capt. John Grout, who was of Watertown, Mass., in 1640, and Phineas Page, were the first settlers of the town of Kirby. They took adjoining tracts of land on the Moose river, a considerable portion of Grout's land lying low in a  bend of the river, and in that early day considered of but little value. But Grout was born and reared on the banks of the Connecticut river, in Charleston, N.H., and naturally held a more favorable view of bottom lands than the average settler. He took a conveyance of this land in 1792, and it has been in the family ever since; he having conveyed it to his son Josiah Grout, in 1848, who, in 1865, conveyed it to his son George W. Grout, and George O. Ford, his son-in-law, from whom the title came in 1874, to its present owner, William W. Grout, the eldest son of Josiah, who, since his ownership, has made extensive and valuable improvements upon it—building two large new barns and remodeling and rearranging two old ones built by his grandfather; also reconstructing and adding to the house, which was built about fifty-five years ago, and was the fourth upon the premises, including the first, which was of logs; and stood upon the hill near the Concord line, where the first opening was made, in order to be well away from the frosts of the low lands and thus secure a crop of wheat, without which the settler in that wilderness country would have been without bread. The low land along the river has been brought under cultivation within the last fifty years; and within the last ten has been thoroughly drained by its present owner, and is, of course, the best upon the farm. The upland rises in an undulating slope to the north and east, but until recently much of it was kept wet and cold by springs of water flowing out in many places. This, too, has been drained and smoothed and fitted for the profitable use of farm machinery, and the whole cultivated portion of the farm, about 150 acres, is now in excellent condition, and very productive. About seventy-five acres are in timber, and 225 in pasturage, making 450 acres in all, 110 having been added to it by the present owner. The farm is heavily stocked with Jersey and high grade Jersey cows, a flock of good sheep, and a fine family of horses, carefully bred from Morgan, Clay, Hambletonian and Mambrino strains. General Grout spends most of his time on the farm when free from professional and public duties; but since he came into possession of it, in 1874, it has been under the immediate management of his brother-in-law, Captain George O. Ford, who married Sophronia, his eldest living sister, and their attachment for the old farm is hardly less than that fits owner. It is, in short, regarded with pride and affection by all members of the family. Now here is a farm that for almost a century has made a comfortable home for three generations of a family whose success, such as it is, has been won wholly in Vermont, and who still cling to the old homestead. Surely here is a lesson for the young men of Vermont, not only in farming but as showing, also, that here in Vermont, as elsewhere, a reasonable degree of success always attends those who patiently and industriously turn to account the opportunities at hand. 

       Theophilus Grout, the first owner of this property, was twenty-four years of age when he commenced clearing it up, and the whole period of his active life was spent upon it. Indeed, the removal of the forest and bringing this tract of land under cultivation constituted his principal life work. He was, to some extent, honored by civil office, was, upon the organization of the town, its first representative, and was several times subsequently returned to the legislature; was for many years justice of the peace, and at one time collector of U. S. revenue; but of far greater service was he to mankind in establishing here in the wilderness a home, and in rearing children who, in their turn, have performed their part, and nearly all passed off the stage. 

       He was a man of large influence in neighborhood and town matters. He was frank and straightforward in all his transactions. His love of justice and fair play, and his knowledge of affairs made his advice and assistance valuable to those in trouble, and he was frequently consulted by such as were involved in legal controversies. He was a man of fine presence, of strong, erect frame and iron constitution. In politics he was a Democrat. In religion he inherited from his puritan ancestors a devotional turn of mind, and at one time was connected with a Baptist church in Waterford; but later in life his views took a somewhat liberal turn. He was, till his death, a regular attendant at church on Sunday, and took a deep interest in every phase of theological discussion. He lived uprightly in the fear of God, and in love with his neighbor. In early life he married Joanna Willard, of Hartland, Vt., who by him was the mother of eleven children, and who died at the age of eighty-one years. Theophilus Grout died April 5, 1852, at the age of eighty-four years, in the full possession of his mental faculties. The text, which, sometime before his death, he had asked the minister to speak from at his funeral, was the prayer of the publican: “God be merciful to me a sinner.”

       Josiah Grout, sixth child of Theophilus, was born October 20, 1805. He married September 29, 1830, Sophronia, daughter of Carleton Ayer, of St. Johnsbury, who was a woman of superior mental and moral qualities; and after living for a time at Canaan Vt., he removed to Compton, P.Q., whither his father-in-law had gone to reside. There he remained till 1848, when his older brother, Theophilus, who had been at home with the old folks, having died, he returned to the old homestead, took title to it, and spent the balance of his life upon it. While in Canada he did not renounce his allegiance to the United States, and took no part in Canadian affairs — though he came near getting himself into trouble with the Canadian authorities by too freely expressing his sympathy with the Papineau rebellion of 1838. 

       Reared a Democrat, he remained such till 1854, when the Democratic party repealed the Missouri Compromise of 1820, which opened Kansas and Nebraska to the introduction of slavery. This was too much for his party fealty, and with his pronounced anti-slavery convictions, he naturally drifted into the Republican ranks, where he was permanently settled by the War of the Rebellion. He cast his first Republican vote for Abraham Lincoln, in 1864. He was not, however, very active in politics, but found greater satisfaction in the cultivation of his farm and the care of his family. He died at the age of sixty-nine years. There were born to Josiah and Sophronia (Ayer) Grout ten children: —

(1) Helen M., December 17, 1831, married Martin Perkins, and died at Stevens Point, Wisconsin, August 26,1856. 

(2) William W., May 24, 1836. See sketch. 

(3) George W., June 26, 1838, farmer, resides in Derby, Vt.

(4) Josiah, May 28, 1841, lawyer and farmer, resides in Derby, Vt.; was major of cavalry in the late war, has been several times member of Vermont legislature, and was speaker of House of Representatives in 1886. 

(5) Sophronia, September 17, 1842, married George O. Ford, who was captain 8th Vt. Vols. in the late war, and resides on the old homestead in Kirby.

(6) Mary, March 15, 1845, married Charles H. Dwinnell, and resides in Barton, Vt. 

(7) Victoria, September 27, 1846, resides with William W., in Barton, Vt. 

(8) Theophilus, September 3, 1848, lawyer, state's attorney, and member of legislature, resides in Newport, Vt. 

(9) Susan, September 21, 1850, married F. W. Baldwin, of Barton, Vt., died in September, 1879. 

(10) James, July 3, 1852, resides on the old homestead in Kirby.

       The following biographical sketch of William W. Grout, by the pen of Hon. George H. Blake, of Orleans county Monitor, is taken from “The Bar of Orleans County,” a book published by F. W. Baldwin, Barton, Vt.:—

       William Wallace Grout was born of American parents in Compton, Province of Quebec, May 24, 1836. His ancestry is traced back in New England to as early a period as 1640, and the record shows that in each generation the Grouts were distinguished for push, strong common sense and integrity. They held various offices, and occupied prominent places in their different spheres of life. From Massachusetts they found their way into New Hampshire, as the new country opened up, and Theophilus, grandfather of William W., came to Vermont in 1792, and settled in Kirby. Josiah, father of William W., was born in Kirby and resided there most of his life, though he spent a few years in Canada. William Wallace was the second child in a family of ten; his mother was Sophronia Ayer, an intelligent, estimable lady of Scotch-Irish descent, whose marked characteristics were transmitted to her children. 

       William W. Grout, like other Vermont boys, had a fair opportunity to attend the common schools, but was ambitious to obtain an education, and hoped to enter one of the professions. He spent his leisure hours in reading and study, and later procured a good academic education. Having decided upon the profession of the law, he entered the law school at Poughkeepsie, N.Y., where he graduated in 1857. Returning from school, he entered the law office of Hon. Thomas Bartlett, of Lyndon, to spend a few months there, and was admitted to the bar in Caledonia county in December of the same year. The next summer he went to Barton and established a law office of his own. The town at that time was the terminus of the railroad and the business center of the county. Several lawyers resided there, and the bar of the county was honored by many members then, and afterwards, distinguished. The young lawyer was pitted against older lawyers than himself in his own town, and against John P. Sartle, an antagonist who was very jealous of his own standing, and imperious in his bearing and conduct. Local litigation soon gave young Grout opportunity to show what material he was made of, and many well remember the fierce battles that were fought in justice courts when Grout and Sartle were engaged as counsel. Here Mr. Grout began to display that good common sense, unfaltering courage, and indomitable perseverance which have ever been the elements of his success. His practice in the local courts increased, and he soon took respectable standing at the bar, both in Orleans and Caledonia counties. 

       In 1862 he was nominated for state's attorney by the Republicans of his county, but he declined the nomination, having decided to enter the army. He recruited a company in Barton, and at its organization was chosen captain. When the line officers met to choose field officers, Capt. Grout was chosen lieutenant-colonel of the 1st Vermont regiment. The regiment was immediately sent to Virginia, and did much marching and picket duty through the winter, camped and tramped all through the guerilla country, and participated in the Gettysburgh campaign; yet it was singularly fortunate in escaping the perils of battles. Col. Grout made an active and efficient officer, and was foremost in seeking the place of danger; he won the confidence of the officers and the esteem of the rank and file of his regiment. The delicate health of his wife forbade that he remain longer from home, and he was mustered out with the regiment in August, 1863, and returned home to resume the practice of the law. The next fall the legislature created a state militia, and Col. Grout was chosen brigadier-general. During the same year he was elected state's attorney, and held the office two years. The somewhat celebrated Baxter-Hoyt campaign for member of congress occurred at this time, and Gen. Grout, having espoused the cause of Mr. Hoyt, made some enemies, who fought him in politics long afterwards. He was elected to the House of Representatives in 1868, and his town paid him the high compliment of sending him to the legislature three successive years. His career in the legislature was marked by a faithful attention to business, a careful regard for the interests of the common people, and a war against the Shylocks who were trying to raise the rate of legal interest above six per cent. He was chosen a delegate to the national convention which first nominated Gen. Grant for the presidency.  In 1874, Gen. Grout was again sent to the lower house of the legislature, and in 1876 he was chosen to the Senate, where he was made president pro tem. of that body. Two years later, after a very sharp political canvass, he was nominated for representative to Congress over Bradley Barlow. The nomination was bolted by Mr. Barlow. A fusion was made with Greenbackers and Democrats; money was freely used in the campaign, and Gen. Grout was defeated. The injustice of the act was felt all through the state, and the refluent wave of favor was such that, in 1880, both friends and former political enemies made haste to right the wrong, and he not only received an almost unanimous nomination, but a triumphant election to the Forty-seventh Congress. As a first-term member he began his work under disadvantages, but the Congressional Record shows that he was neither an idle nor a silent member. Among the most important measures which he advocated in this congress may be mentioned the creation of a cabinet officer for the head of the agricultural department, the Geneva award, the American shipping bill, the North Dakota Territory bill, and a bill on French spoliations. During the full term of his congressional service he was very faithful to duty, doing a great amount of work, both for the country and his constituents. Just at the close of his work at this time in congress, he was prostrated by a very severe illness which threatened life for some days, and made him unfit for labor several months afterward. The new apportionment had diminished the number of representatives in Vermont to two, and the state had been divided by legislative act into two districts, by a line running along the Green Mountains. This brought Gen. Grout into the second district, and it became to be felt that the interests of the district and the state demanded that he be returned to Washington from this district. At the time the caucuses were held before the district convention, Gen. Grout was busy in Washington, and a few days later prostrate with sickness, so that his canvass was not looked after, and the friends of Judge Poland, taking advantage of the situation, carried a majority of the primary meetings and the convention. Many were dissatisfied with the result, and there was a strong disposition to bolt the nomination. Gen. Grout discountenanced the move and counseled his friends to support the nominee. At the September election a large number of votes were cast for Gen. Grout, but Judge Poland won, and his work in congress was very creditable to the state and to himself. Previous to the time of the district convention in 1884, Judge Poland took himself out of the canvass, and the names of Gen. Grout, Col. G. W. Hooker and Hon. William P. Dillingham were most prominently mentioned for member of congress. Gen. Grout was successful in the convention, and was elected by a majority said to have been the largest given to any congressman chosen from the state in many years. 

  *At this time Gen. Grout is serving his second term in congress; he has been in his place every day of the session, and has won no little credit for himself and the state by his faithful attention to duty. Among the most notable speeches he has made are those on the Fitz John Porter and the Oleo-margarine bills. Should the people again decide to return him to congress, we see no reason why his usefulness and influence may not increase as his opportunities are extended.

      [* Mr. Grout is now on his third term. He was unanimously renominated in 1886, soon after the above article was written, and was elected by an increased majority, running several hundred ahead of the vote for Governor in his district.]

       Gen. Grout's course in congress has been in keeping with his character; he has been very faithful to the interests of his constituents and his friends; he has been ambitious to do well whatever he has undertaken to do, and has succeeded. In this exalted and difficult sphere, Gen. Grout has been able, as in all places where he has been placed, to exceed the expectation of his friends and to disappoint his rivals. 

       While Gen. Grout has been largely engaged in political affairs, he has all the while kept up a good law practice, and has been engaged in many important civil and criminal suits.  Prominent among them were the cases of Hayden and Turner, indicted for murder, and Moore for forgery. Judge Powers, before whom the Harden case was tried, remarked to the writer that Gen. Grout's effort before the jury was one of the most able arguments he ever heard. Turner was acquitted and Moore was released on his own bail after a disagreement of the jury.  Gen. Grout, without disparagement to other counsel, was the chief man on the defense in these important cases. It is a somewhat singular circumstance that in a large practice of several years Gen. Grout only lost a single case where he brought the suit, prepared and tried the case. Whenever he has put himself into a case, he has managed it with admirable skill and with great wisdom. As an advocate he is pleasing, persuasive and able; he seeks to convince a jury by plain and vigorous arguments, caring more to present his case clearly by simple language, than to charm the ear with smooth and elegant phrases. He is intuitively familiar with the principles of justice, and seeks to attain what is right, regardless of the technicalities and the intricacies of law. Had he concentrated his thoughts and his energies upon the law alone, few lawyers would have been his superior. 

       For many years Gen. Grout has been actively engaged in agricultural matters. He purchased the old Grout homestead in Caledonia county, hired his brother-in-law, Capt. Ford, as manager, and commenced both practical and scientific farming. He took the farm in a run down condition, but at once entered upon the work of reclamation. He erected large barns—the largest in the vicinity—he built silos, purchased thoroughbred stock, laid miles of underdraining, and resorted to approved methods of labor without and within. He has been successful, and has far more than attained that most desirable thing which Justin S. Morrill once declared to be worthy the highest aim of the Vermont farmer — “the raising of two blades of grass in the place of one.” His farm demonstrates the fact that intelligent farming can be successful and profitable in Vermont. 

       Gen. Grout married Loraine M. Smith, of Glover, in 1860. She was a woman of most lovely and amiable disposition, and was highly esteemed for her intelligence and womanly virtues. The union was a most happy one. Two children were born as the fruits of the marriage, but they passed away early, and the mother, stricken and bereft, survived them but a brief time and died in 1868. The loss to the husband was irreparable, and he has felt that no other could fill the place of his early love. He remains single, and his home in Barton is in charge of his sister, Victoria Grout. As a citizen Gen. Grout endears himself to his community by his charity, honesty and public spirit. The poor always find in him a friend; he contributes largely to all churches, and his gifts to schools and other institutions have been large. His word is truth and his honor is unquestioned. He is ever ready to assist in any enterprise that promises to be a public benefit.  In religious matters he is liberal, but his liberality does not tolerate anything of infidelity, or sanction aught but the cardinal principles of Bible religion. He is a man who grows in the esteem as acquaintance and association become more intimate.  Industrious, persistent, able, honest, courageous and ambitious, Gen. Grout is made of that stuff and of those elements which always succeed, and which bespeak for the future, should his life be spared, a career that will be an honor to his name, his profession and his state. 

       Dr. Abner Mills was the first and only physician who ever located in the town. The first birth was that of Lovina Harrington, June 2, 1801. The first marriage was that of Nathaniel Reed and Sukey Sweat, February 8, 1804. The first death was that of Henry White, September 3, 1803. 

       Ebenezer Damon, of Ashby, Mass., came to Kirby about 1800, and settled on the farm where H. L. Wetherby now lives, on road 5. He married, first, a Miss Morse, and second, Rhobe Sheldon, and his children were as follows: George, Sally M., Lyman, Eben, Franklin, John, Ruth, Job, Esther and William. The last mentioned married Clara E., daughter of Josiah and Clarissa (Spaulding) Clark, and has had born to him six children, namely, Frances S., William E., Clara E., Rhobe E., Benjamin F. and Charles U. He now resides on road 3. 

       Timothy Locke, a native of Ashby, Mass., came to Kirby in 1803, and settled on road 5, where he remained until his death, April 4, 1850, aged seventy-one years. He married Rebecca, daughter of Joseph Dutton, and was a justice of the peace. Of his six children; Joel was born June 14, 1815, married twice, first, Hannah C. Judd, of Landaff, N.H., who bore him one child, Myron J., and second, Louise, daughter of Joel Harrington, and had born to him two children, Henry and Albert S.   Mr. Locke died in 1859, aged forty-three years. Albert S, married Luvia Mathews, of St. Johnsbury, and resides on the homestead with his mother. 

       Charles Church married Hannah Little, was a resident of Hancock, Vt., and had born to him seven children, of whom James was a native of Springfield, N.H., came to this town in 1814, and was the first settler on a farm on road 23. He married Betsey Willis, of Enfield, N.H., and reared six children. Mr. Willis died in 1875, aged eighty-three years. His son Elhanan W. married Lydia L., daughter of Josiah and Delia (Hibbard) Gregory, and has three children, namely, Celia A., Leis A., and Luvia A. who married Chandler C., son of Lemuel and Philenia (Kibby) Walter, of Burke.  Mr. Church has served as town representative four terms and two special terms, and served as recruiting officer during the late war. 

       Moses Graves, son of Jeremiah and Lucinda (Hubbard) Graves, was born in Conway, Mass., September 17, 1781, came to Kirby in 1814, and was the first permanent settler on the place known as the Graves farm, on road 6. He married Wealthy Carpenter, had born to him two children, Charles H. and Wealthy A., and died October 10, 1854. Charles H. married Mary Goodell, and reared two children. He served as town clerk sixteen years, justice of the peace twenty years, and represented the town six years. His son Preston H. married Almira S., daughter of Lewis and Sarah (Hall) Jenkins, and granddaughter of Lemuel Jenkins, a soldier in the Revolutionary war. His children are Harry S., Nellie M. and Harvey P., and he resides on the homestead. Mr. Graves has been selectman twenty years, justice of the peace sixteen years, town clerk eighteen years, and town representative two years. 

       Russell Risley, son of James who served in the Revolutionary war, was born in Hartford, Conn., in 1800, came to this town in 1827, and was the first one to settle on the Risley farm, on road 16. He married Achsah Wood, and reared seven children, of whom Russell resides on the homestead with his sisters, Hannah and Achsah W.   Russell, Sr., died in 1870, aged seventy years, and his widow died in 1875, aged eighty-three years. 

       Robert Ford, a native of Grafton, N.H., came to this town about 1830, and settled on road 15, where he remained until his death in 1862, aged seventy-five years. He married a Miss Hale, and reared nine children, of whom James married Ann McCoy, and his children were as follows: Alonzo L., Philander C., David W., Capt. George O., Charles W., Laurestine B. and Linette.  George O. married Sophronia E., daughter of Josiah and Sophronia. (Ayer) Grout, has one son, Lew W., and resides on a farm on road 29. He served in the late war, in Co. K, 8th Vt. Vols., and was promoted to captain. He has served the town as selectman. 

       Reuben Bean, son of Daniel, came here in 1833, and was the first settler on the farm where L. Page now lives, on road 16. He married Sally Hale, and reared nine children. He died in Lyndon in 1872, aged eighty years. His son Sewell H., born in 1814, married Miranda Hartwell, and his children were as follows: Martha A., Reuben, Mary E., Amanda C., Lura A., John A. and Charles H.   Mrs. Bean died June 18, 1870, aged fifty-seven years. Mr. Bean now resides on road 12.  Charles H. married Clara M., daughter of Moses and Clarinda (Houston) Emerson, and his children are Emily M., Carrie J. and Luvia L. He resides with his father on road 12. 

       Ichabod Young, a native of Weathersfield, Vt., reared seven children, of whom David married Eusebia Kendall, came here in 1835, and located where his son now resides, on road 8. He died in 1843, aged sixty years. Of his eight children, Huntley D. married Eliza Spaulding, and has had born to him six children, namely, Jeannette A., Eusebia E., Rosella U., Henry H., Rufus E. and David S.   The latter married Leis A., daughter of Elhanan W. and Lydia L. (Gregory) Church, and resides on the homestead with his father. Mr. Young served as town representative in 1861-62, was recruiting officer in the late war, has been selectman several years, overseer of the poor twelve years, and has been justice of the peace. Eusebia E. Young married William H. McGaffey, now at Lyndon Corners, where he has been a merchant many years. 

       Jonathan Houghton, son of Jonathan, was a native of Westminster, Vt., and was the first settler on the farm where his son Jonathan now lives, on road 3. He married Polly Wilder and had born to him three children, Amanda E., Mary A. and Jonathan.  He died at the age of thirty-eight years. Jonathan, Jr., married Emeline W., daughter of Moses and Clara (White) Hosmer, of Burke, who bore him five children, viz.: Amanda E., Helen E., Carlton J., Florence A. and Celia E.  His wife died October 11, 1880.  Celia E. married Bion Humphrey, son of Joseph B. F. and Marilla C. Humphrey, and they have two children, Bertha F. and Marion M. She resides with her father on the homestead. 

       Josiah Brown, a native of Rhode Island, located here on road 11, where he remained until his death, at the age of sixty-four years. He married Susan Willmarth, and reared eight children, viz.: Esther, Abel, Zenas, Hopestell, Mary, Joseph, Ira and Samuel. The last mentioned married Lucy Gale, and had six children. Mr. Brown remained on the home farm until his death, in 1883, aged eighty-one years. His son Josiah married first, Amelia, daughter of John W. and Amelia (Fuller) Brown, who bore him three children, Carrie M., Minnie A. and Mary E.  He married for his second wife Abbie, daughter of Harrison and Betsey (Ward) Weeks, and has had born to him four children, viz.: Addie J., Grace E., Harley J., now deceased, and Florence B. He resides on the homestead. 

       Luther Russell, son of Luther who died in Kirby at the age of ninety-six years, was born in this town. He married, first, Annie Wood, who bore him eight children, and second, Maria Easterbrooks, who bore him one daughter, Annie.  Mr. Russell moved to Sutton, where he died. One son, Palmer W., married Laura J., daughter of Nathan C. and Louise (Farnham) Chase, and had born to him six children, viz.: Nellie A., Flora D., Walter S., William P., Dessie M. and Eugene L., Palmer W., born in Kirby June 9, 1829, went to California and Australia, returned to Kirby, locating on the Deacon Lockefarm, but later bought the Jonathan Jenkins farm, where he died, April 14, 1883, aged fifty-four years. He held many of the town offices, served as lister, selectman, agent, justice, overseer of the poor, served as town representative three times, and held five town offices at the time of his death. He was a member of the Congregational church, at East St. Johnsbury. 

       Archibald Chase, of Royalston, Mass., moved to Concord, Vt., in 1807, married Margaret Nichols, and his children were eighteen in number. He died in Concord, February 15, 1853. His son Elmore married three times, first, Nancy Taggart, who bore him two children; second, Cynthia Hill, who bore him six children, and third, Jane D., daughter of Solomon and Hannah (Dunham) Hudson, who bore him five children, as follows: Lucy J., Frank K., Fred M., Nancy M. and George A.   Mr. Chase died August 27, 1882, aged seventy-five years. George A. lives on the homestead with his mother. 

       Wheeler Richards, a native of Sharon, Vt., married Betsey Marsh, and came to Kirby, in 1844. He afterwards moved to Sheffield, where he died at the age of seventy-five years. His son Joel was born in Derby, Vt., married Lovinia, daughter of John and Alice (Knights) Russell, and had born to him five children, viz.: Alice, Charles, Mary, Celia and Winfield S.  He died in 1880, aged sixty years. Winfield S. married Emily, daughter of Michael and Sarah A. (Stephens) Conley, has two children, Everard K. and Clarence M., and lives on the homestead, on road 27. 

       John C. McGinnis, son of William, and grandson of Joseph, a native of Edinburgh, Scotland, came to America in 1857, and came here about 1861, locating on road 30, where he now resides. He married Ellen, daughter of George and Elsie (Cotton) Drew, and has had born to him seven children, viz.: George, Sherman J., Bertie, Elbina, Frank, Inez and Jennie W. 

       Lewis Jenkins, son of Lemuel, a Revolutionary soldier, was born in Chesterfield, N.H., in September, 1799, was an ordained Methodist minister, and resided in Burke, where he died in 1877.  Milo, one of his eleven children, married first, Amelia, daughter of Jacob and Sally (Pierce) Sanderson, who bore him five children, viz.: Adna, Fred E., Harris E., Charles A. and Willie L. He married for his second wife Ellen A., daughter of Asa and Aseneth (George) Etheridge, and has one daughter, Nellie A. He has served as lister several years, and was town representative in 1882-83. 

       Nathan Wetherby, a native of Westminster, Mass., came to this town and located on the place where W. Damon now lives. He married Tyla Leach, and had born to him three children, viz.: Silas H., Mary J. and Henry L.  He died in town in 1873, aged seventy-three years. His son Henry L. married Emeline, daughter of Alanson and Polly (Haywood) Wright, and has had born to him four children, namely, Revillo W., Elmer E., Alson N. and Eva J. He resides on road 5, where he has lived eighteen years. He is town treasurer, has been selectman four years, and represented the town in 1872 and 1884. Alanson Wright, father of Mrs. Henry L. Wetherby, served in the War of 1812, and died at Lowell, Mass., in 1872, aged seventy-six years. 

       Caleb Baldwin, a native of Claremont, N.H., where he died in 1838, reared eight children, of whom Josiah married Esther Farrington in 1845, has had born to him two children, Hattie I. and Willie C., and resides in St. Johnsbury. Willie C. married Maggie B., daughter of Joseph and Mary (Woodbury) Lamb, and has had born to him two children, Lulu A. and Richie F.  He resides in town, on road 29.  Enoch P. Woodbury, grandsire of Mrs. W. C. Baldwin, was a soldier in the Revolutionary war. 

       Samuel Noyes, a native of Haverhill, Mass., married Sally Rollins, and reared seven children. He moved to Landaff, N.H., while young and remained there until his death, in 1848, aged ninety-three years. His son Daniel married, first, Mehitable Quimby, and had born to him two children, David and Mehitable, and second, Susan, sister of his first wife, who bore him eleven children. He died about 1852, aged seventy-two years. His son Ira has served as selectman many times, married, first, Susan P. Smith, who bore him three children, Charles A., Ira G. and Daniel M., and second, Ann Olcott.  He resides here on a farm with his son Charles A. The latter married Ama H., daughter of Cyrus and Dolly (Colby) Smith, and has one daughter, Susanna. 

       Nathaniel Reed was an early settler of Concord, married Susan Sweat, the first couple married in Kirby, and reared six children, viz.: Willard, Samuel, Louisa, Rosetta, Cynthia and Stephen. He died at the age of eighty years.  Stephen married, first, Polly Chickering, who bore him one daughter, Adelaide, and second, Polly, daughter of Amos and Ruth (Babcock) Hutchinson, and had born to him seven children, of whom Winthrop T. married Celia, daughter of Joel and Lavina (Russell) Richards, has two children, Winifred M. and Ivanilla E., and resides on a farm on road 27. He served in the late war, in 3d Vt. Lt. Art.

       The Congregational church. — In 1812 the Congregational church was organized, consisting of eleven members. Timothy Locke was chosen first deacon, which office he held until his death, in 1850. This church had no pastor ordained over it but was improved a part of the time by itinerant ministers from abroad. In 1824, Rev. Luther Wood united with the church, and continued to preach a portion of the time, until, on account of the infirmities of age, he was no longer able to perform pastoral duties. In 1828 the church erected a comfortable house of worship, in which they continued to meet until about 1840, at which time the church numbered forty-five members. About the same year a new church was formed at East St. Johnsbury. In order to enjoy better privileges and accommodations than what they had hitherto been able to, a portion of the Kirby church asked and obtained dismission from the latter, with a view to uniting with the former. This exodus from the old church left it in such a feeble condition that it was no longer able to sustain stated preaching. Of late years, however, more enthusiasm has prevailed. The building, which is located on road 9, was repaired in 1885, and is now a comfortable structure. The society has twenty-seven members, with Rev. George W. Kelley, pastor.

(Source: Gazetteer of Caledonia and Essex Counties, VT.; 1764-1887, Compiled and Published by Hamilton Child; May 1887, Page 223-229)

This chapter was provided by 

Kirby: Population 350, Census of 1900. "Successful Vermonters: A Modern Gazetteer of Caledonia, Essex, and Orleans Counties." by William H. Jeffrey.