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 Joseph Griswold

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Joseph Griswold

Birth
England
Death
3 Mar 1806 (aged 77–78)
Randolph Center, Orange County, Vermont, USA
Burial
Randolph Center, Orange County, Vermont, USA
Memorial ID
102002891 View Source

From the Gazetteer of Orange County, VT 1762-1888 compiled and published by Hamilton Child (pages 354-355).

Joseph Griswold, the first man by the name that settled in Randolph, was born in 1728, in the southern part of England. He, with two brothers older than himself, emigrated to America about the year 1750. The two brothers being married, they settled. Some two years after their arrival, Joseph was swimming in the Connecticut river, and was seized with a cramp—and a young man in company with him dragged him to the shore. All his efforts to restore him were fruitless, and he hastily covered him with his clothes and ran to the wigwam of an Indian medicine-man for aid. The Indian was not at home; but his daughter, Margery, returned with him, and after a long time succeeded in resuscitating the drowned man. He was so helpless and weak that it was many days before he was able to leave the wigwam. Margery had been his constant and attentive nurse and companion. Her father was skilled in all the lore of a learned Indian, and being the younger brother of a powerful sachem was much respected, not only by his tribe, but had many warm friends among the white settlers in that section of the country, and his medical skill was as frequently taxed by the whites as by the red men. Margery was his only child, and he instructed her in all the arts for which he was so celebrated.
After his recovery Joseph Griswold frequently visited the Indian girl—and at length, in opposition to his brother's counsel, married her, unknown to her father, and moved to Chicopee, Mass., where they lived for many years. Her father became reconciled to the union, and occasionally visited them; but Griswold was not very prosperous—children were born to him, and his wife practiced her father's profession, and rode far and near to attend the sick. But physicians came to settle near, and ridiculed the simple skill of the Indian doctress, and at length was cut off entirely the income derived from her attendance upon the sick. Disheartened by repeated misfortunes, they finally determined to start life anew, and with six children made a pitch in the northern part of Randolph. Their eldest son, Joseph, preferred remaining in Chicopee; and as he was of age, and expected soon to be married, he took the homestead, paying his father £20 "of lawful money''; and, with their worldly goods all packed in a cart, with one yoke of cattle, an old white mare—a present to Margery from her father—and one cow, they started from Chicopee for their new home, Joseph, the eldest, remaining. The names of their other children were Frederick, John, Benjamin, Sylvester, Eunice, and Lois. They were all remarkably athletic and enterprising, and fortune smiled upon them. In a few years they began to accumulate property. Mrs. Griswold's uncle, the sachem, died, and her father succeeded him; but the name was only a sinecure—the glory of the once powerful tribe had departed, and the few feeble remnants were soon dispersed—but their chief, or Dogerill, as the English called him, clung to the homes and graves of his forefathers. Once in two years he came to Vermont to visit his daughter and her family, for whom he always felt the warmest affection. He rejoiced in their prosperity. His last visit was made in the autumn of 1798, and it was a wearisome journey to him. Dispirited and sick, he reached their home; and when he left it the last time—one week later—he was carried in the dead of night, dressed in his chieftain's clothes, and laid in the field south of the house. His daughter's husband and herself hollowed the lonely bed, and, with the help of her two eldest sons, they laid that proud head down, with his gun and hunting knife by his side, and his tomahawk in his hand. Two large stones were afterwards raised to cover the grave, and mark his resting-place.

From the Gazetteer of Orange County, VT 1762-1888 compiled and published by Hamilton Child (pages 354-355).

Joseph Griswold, the first man by the name that settled in Randolph, was born in 1728, in the southern part of England. He, with two brothers older than himself, emigrated to America about the year 1750. The two brothers being married, they settled. Some two years after their arrival, Joseph was swimming in the Connecticut river, and was seized with a cramp—and a young man in company with him dragged him to the shore. All his efforts to restore him were fruitless, and he hastily covered him with his clothes and ran to the wigwam of an Indian medicine-man for aid. The Indian was not at home; but his daughter, Margery, returned with him, and after a long time succeeded in resuscitating the drowned man. He was so helpless and weak that it was many days before he was able to leave the wigwam. Margery had been his constant and attentive nurse and companion. Her father was skilled in all the lore of a learned Indian, and being the younger brother of a powerful sachem was much respected, not only by his tribe, but had many warm friends among the white settlers in that section of the country, and his medical skill was as frequently taxed by the whites as by the red men. Margery was his only child, and he instructed her in all the arts for which he was so celebrated.
After his recovery Joseph Griswold frequently visited the Indian girl—and at length, in opposition to his brother's counsel, married her, unknown to her father, and moved to Chicopee, Mass., where they lived for many years. Her father became reconciled to the union, and occasionally visited them; but Griswold was not very prosperous—children were born to him, and his wife practiced her father's profession, and rode far and near to attend the sick. But physicians came to settle near, and ridiculed the simple skill of the Indian doctress, and at length was cut off entirely the income derived from her attendance upon the sick. Disheartened by repeated misfortunes, they finally determined to start life anew, and with six children made a pitch in the northern part of Randolph. Their eldest son, Joseph, preferred remaining in Chicopee; and as he was of age, and expected soon to be married, he took the homestead, paying his father £20 "of lawful money''; and, with their worldly goods all packed in a cart, with one yoke of cattle, an old white mare—a present to Margery from her father—and one cow, they started from Chicopee for their new home, Joseph, the eldest, remaining. The names of their other children were Frederick, John, Benjamin, Sylvester, Eunice, and Lois. They were all remarkably athletic and enterprising, and fortune smiled upon them. In a few years they began to accumulate property. Mrs. Griswold's uncle, the sachem, died, and her father succeeded him; but the name was only a sinecure—the glory of the once powerful tribe had departed, and the few feeble remnants were soon dispersed—but their chief, or Dogerill, as the English called him, clung to the homes and graves of his forefathers. Once in two years he came to Vermont to visit his daughter and her family, for whom he always felt the warmest affection. He rejoiced in their prosperity. His last visit was made in the autumn of 1798, and it was a wearisome journey to him. Dispirited and sick, he reached their home; and when he left it the last time—one week later—he was carried in the dead of night, dressed in his chieftain's clothes, and laid in the field south of the house. His daughter's husband and herself hollowed the lonely bed, and, with the help of her two eldest sons, they laid that proud head down, with his gun and hunting knife by his side, and his tomahawk in his hand. Two large stones were afterwards raised to cover the grave, and mark his resting-place.


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