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Richard Chamberlin
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Birth: Jul. 9, 1714
Massachusetts, USA
Death: Sep. 16, 1784
Orange County
Vermont, USA

Per a book written by Eunice Miena Barber:

Richard, eldest son of Nathaniel & Elizabeth (Hunkins) Chamberlin, was born @ Oxford, Mass, on 7/9/1714; lived @ Northfield, Mass., from 1731-1753. In 1744 he helped to build Deacon Ebenezer Alexander's "mound" or fort, receiving from the town of Northfield 16 shillings for two days' work. He was in Capt. Phineas Stevens' company of 66 men garrisoned at "Number 4" (Charlestown, NH) withstanding a desperate siege by the French & Indians under one Debeline in 1747; also in Capt. Salah Barnard's Co., Colonel William Williams' Regiment for the reduction of Canada 3/13 to 12/13 of 1758, with his son Abiel.

He lived in Hinsdale, NH (the town adjoining Northfield & formerly a part of it), in 1755, & removed to Newbury, VT., in 1762. Wells' History of Newbury, from which some of this record is taken, says: "In June, 1762, came up Richard Chamberlin from Hinsdale (NH) with a family of 13 children. Seven only, came with the parents, the rest afterwards. Richard & family landed about noon at the old ferry. Before night a hut of posts, bark, etc., was erected, in which they lived 3 mo's. A large stump in the middle, covered with a board, served for a table. He settled upon Musquash meadow & kept a ferry between Newbury (VT) & Haverhill (NH) for many years."

By a vote of the town, on 5/18/1773, he was given charge of the ferry "which is by his house across Connecticut River" he to receive "the profits for ferrying, three coppers for man & horse, & one copper for a man alone, & allowing the use of his boat on the Sabbath for Newbury & Haverhill to pass & repass to the public worship of God, the boat being made good. After him his sons kept the ferry until the bridge was built in 1796.

One of his daughters, who had crossed the river in her father's boat one day, returned in the dusk of the evening. After pushing the boat into the stream, she found that an animal in the further end of the boat which she had supposed to be a dog, was a young bear. The girl screamed & the bear leaped over the side of the boat & disappeared with a great splash. Which of the two, the girl or the bear, was the most frightened is not known.

One of the sons of Richard Chamberlin related in his old age that they seldom arose in the mornings of that long winter (about 1762-1763) without seeing the tracks of bears & wolves in the snow around their cabin on Musquash meadow. Few of the cabins had doors, for as yet there was no sawmill, but a coverlid suspended over the entrance kept out some of the cold. Sometimes wolves would lift this curtain & thrust in their heads. The cattle had to be shut in pens built strongly enough to resist the attacks of bears. Yet the people seemed to have got through the winter very well.

No one died & we do not know that any went back in the spring disheartened to the older settlements. The men worked hard at healthy, vigorous labor in the open air, chopping & clearing land & hunting. They seemed to have had plenty of food; they were all young & took their privations as a matter of course. Richard Chamberlin was the only man past 45 & he was accustomed to pioneer life.

Richard Chamberlin, as well as his sons Joseph & Abiel, was one of the original grantees of the town of Newbury, by deed from Gov. Benning Wentworth of NH on 3/18/1763. Richard with other Grantees, signed in 4/1768, a deed of land in Newbury to Benjamin Whiting, & the attached is a facsimile of his signature to that instrument, the original of which is preserved by the New England Historic Genealogical Society.

The first local town meeting of Newbury was held at General Bayley's house on 6/12/1764, at which Richard Chamberlin & Simeon Stevens were chosen as tything-men, a sort of local police whose duties were to inspect taverns, keep an eye upon strangers & suspicious person & they could arrest without a warrant, offenders against the law. It was their duty to detain travelers upon the highway on the Sabbath & keep order in public assemblies, particularly in the meeting-house on the Lord's Day. When on duty, they carried a wand or staff five feet long. A number of duties which are now performed by other officers were then attended to by the tything-men. This office was considered very important & only the most staid & substantial citizens were elected to it. They usually held the office several years in succession.

At the age of 61 Richard Chamberlin was a member of the first company of Minute-men organized by Capt. Thomas Johnson in Newbury for service in the Revolutionary War; but probably did not see actual service. Six of his sons, Joseph (Second Lieutenant), Abiel, Er, Nathaniel, Silas & Richard Jr., went with Capt. Johnson's company to Saratoga in 1775.

He married Abigail, daughter of Remembrance Wright, born 4/27/1719, who was one of the earliest members of the Congregational Church of Newbury. She survived her husband several years, as she is mentioned as late as 1795 in Dr. Samuel White's account book as "Widow Richard Chamberlin" but the date of her death is unknown. He died @ Newbury 9/16/1784, & was buried in the cemetery there, where his gravestone may still be seen.
Family links: 
  Abigail Wright Chamberlin (1719 - 1795)*
  Abigail Chamberlin (1736 - 1815)*
  Joseph Chamberlin (1738 - 1815)*
  Abiel Chamberlin (1739 - 1787)*
  Er Chamberlin (1744 - 1831)*
  Nathaniel Chamberlin (1746 - 1801)*
  Benjamin Chamberlin (1747 - 1832)*
  Eri Chamberlin (1761 - 1773)*
*Calculated relationship
Oxbow Cemetery
Orange County
Vermont, USA
Maintained by: DMLeForce
Originally Created by: Robin Parker
Record added: Jan 19, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 33068390
Richard Chamberlin
Added by: Donna Bickel
Richard Chamberlin
Added by: Donna Bickel
Richard Chamberlin
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Bill McKern
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.

- Melinda Morey Gregory
 Added: Jul. 25, 2017

- Deborah Barber
 Added: Nov. 14, 2013
Thanks for the pics. This is my 6th gt-grandfather. :)
- Catherine Selle-Hesselbacher
 Added: Sep. 9, 2012
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