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to the continuation of the Stilson/Stillson A Family History 1646 - 1993, by Christie Stilson, page maintained and put on web by Margaret Lee. These pages will consist of Henry Stilson 1784/bef.1862, son of William Stilson and Joseph Stilson 1815/1885, son of Abel & Sarah. Created on Sept. 8, 2000.

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(Vincent 1; James 2; James 3; James 4; William 5; Henry 6)

VI. HENRY STILLSON,was b. May 23, 1784 and m. 1806, at Lee, N.H., Abigail "Nabby" Randall. From the History of Durham we have that they were married by Rev. John Osborn, Elde, Lee, Stratford Co., N.H. He died before 1862 possibly in Lee, N.H. Abigail was the daughter of Job (b. Jan 7, 1761, son of Miles) and Sarah (Langley) Randall. The record shows they had seven children born between about 1810 and 1830, all in Lee, N.H. Information from Frank Stilson lists five children. See Generation VI.

    1.Philena Stillson b. unknown in Lee, New Hampshire and married about
    January 26, 1846 to Frederick A.M. Perry.

    2. Daniel B. Stillson, b. about 1808 in Lee, New Hamphsire. Married Adaline _____.

    3. Hannah Stillson b. February 23, 1814 in Lee, NH. Married June 11, 1843, in Lowell
    Massachusetts to William Bunker

    4. John Stillson b. about 1820 in Lee, NH. Married May 20, 1848 in Barrington, NH to
    MaryTuttle. He d. about 1863 in Newmarket, NH. Information from Frank Stillson
    and also from New Hampshire history lists John m. to Mary "Bunker" who was b. in
    Lee in 1813.

        a. Mary Stillson b. about 1850 in Lee, NH.

        b. Sherman Stillson b. about 1852 in Lee, NH and m. August 4, 1879 in New Market
        toLuella Almora Bennett. He d. May 7, 1931. This information was provied by
        Frank Stillson. Other information found on this family in New Hampshire History
        records had listed Sherman b. April 2, 1847 in Newmarket, Rockingham Co., NH,
        which would have been before the above mentioned marriage date. The same
        historical information mentions that he died in Epping, NH at age 84 years, 1 month
        and 5 days on May 7, 1931 in Epping, NY and per Vital Records he is buried at
        Prospect Cemetery in Epping. These records tell that he m. Luella Almora Bennett
        who was b. 1855/1856 in Durham, NH and that she died June 3, 1903 in Epping at
        age 47 years and that she is also buried in Prospect. Her father is unknown, her
        mother was named Sarah. These records show they had children:

            William S. Stilson b. November 16 1879 at Newmarked, N.H., d. January 7,
            1932 at Epping, NH. He m. September 21, 1899 to Francis L. Trombly, they
            divorced. Frances was the daughter of Frank P. and Mary (Jones) Trombly.
            Frank was b. in Dover, N.H. Mary in Milton, VT William S. Stilson and Frances
            had children: Ernest Chesley b. January 7, 1900 in Newmarket, Elsie G. b.
            October 12, 1904, d. August 18, 1905 and Gladys A. b. September 18, 1919 in
            Brentwood, N.H., d. November 25, 1919 in Exeter, N.H.

            Annie Mary b. February 26, 1882. She m. 1)___ Fieldstone and had daughter
            Grace b. 1814.

            Freddie b. October 24, 1884, d. January 5, 1885 at Epping.


            Freddie V. b. Feb. 23, 1887 at Epping, d. Dec. 13, 1892

            Charles Henry b. Sept. 7, 1888 at Epping, N.H.

            John Frank b. April 7, 1891 at Epping

            Ida F. b. Dec. 31, 1893 at Epping

            Corella b. March 26, 1896 at Epping

            Helen Beatrice b. May 22, 1899 and d. July 24, 1902 at Epping

        c. Charles Stillson b. about 1854 in Lee, NH. He m. Abbie J. Rollins

        d. Josephine Stillson b. about 1856, m. November 22, 1875 in Newmarket,
        NH to John Smith

        e. Frank Stillson b. May 1858 in Lee, NH and died Oct. 16, 1912 in beverly
        Massachusetts. His wife was Emma B. Tinker, the daughter of John Tinker and
        Mary Clark. emma was born in Amesbury, Massachusetts about May 1864.
        She died in Beverly, MA on April 19, 1919. See Generation VII.

5. William H. Stillson b. about 1823 in Lee, N.H. He married Lizzie E. ______.



(Vincent 1; Hugh 2; Vincent 3; Abel 4; Abel 5; Joseph 6)

VI. JOSEPH STILSON, the son of Abel and Sara Wetmore Stilson. According to records of Bertha Taft Keith, he died unmarried. However this was incorrect. Joseph was b. August 8, 1815 in Newtown, Connecticut and he d. at Bedford Indiana, September 15, 1885. Eliza Jane Reddick was b. Harrodsburg, Indiana in 1823. She married in 1841. She died Bedford, Indiana, April 15, 1891 at the age of 68.

Abel Stilson family recorded in a small notebook in original handwriting is found on film 862, 789 it 4, pp 11-14. It lists that Joseph Stilson left four heirs. Information lists Joseph: Mary M. Bedford, Indiana, Joseph O. of Indianapolis, Ind., Sarah Ann of Rangas City, MO., and Hamilton of Red Bluff, California.

Records of Hamilton Reddick Stillson, the youngest son, penned in 1933, contained more than a dozen typewritten pages of family history. He writes, A little over a year after Abel, the son of Abel, married Sarah Ann Wetmore, their first son, Eli was born. and Two years after Eli, their son Joseph was born. The babies kept coming along every two or three years, so that when young Joseph was about fourteen years old, the seventh baby was born in the family and Joseph evidently thought there were more than enough people on one little rock farm, so he ran away from home and came west.

Hamilton continues, "in the Bedford Democrat of September 19th, 1885, it is stated that he came to Bedford in 1836 at the suggestion of Dr. Winthrope Foote of Bedford, who was born and reared at Newtown and who knew the Stillsons at Newtown. But this is questionable. Father left Newtown in 1829, and I have a dim recollection that he stated that after he ran away from home at the age of fourteen, he worked his way through high school and an Academy in Ohio, where he taught in his senior year. Certainly there were seven years between the time he left home and the time he arrived at Bedford. Moreover, his first occupation at Beford was teaching. It is probable that soon after he arrived at Bedford, he not only taught in the seminary, but also studied medicine with Dr. Foote. I have often heard him mention his tutelage with Dr. Foote, helping Dr. Foote with his office work, sweeping the floors, helping with the books and medicines, and sleeping in a little room at the rear of the office. The chronology of it would run about like this: Left Newtown in 1829, worked his way through school for seven years, arrieved at Bedford in 1836, taught in the seminary for three years, studying medicine with Dr. Foote in the meantime. Graduated in Medicine 1839. Began his practice of medicine at Nashville, Brown County, 1840, and at Harrodsburg also the same year. Became a partner with his old preceptor, Dr. Foote, 1841. Continued at Beford till the time of his death, September 15, 1885."

Hamilton writes, Joseph "studied medicine, attending medical college at the University of Louisville in the winter and assisting Dr. Foote during the summer. I don't know how many terms, but I imagine that he got through in two terms, since medical diplomas were more easily obtained in those days, but I know he was about 26 years old when he married and that he married about 1841, and that he was in very active practice as a physician when he married. He married Eliza Jane Reddick, a fine Irish lass about 18 years of age, daughter of Squire Hamilton Reddick near Harrodsburg, Indiana. The story goes that the young doctor was so busy that he hardly had time for the ceremony. Mother used to say that her honeymoon was a vestal honeymoon. There was an epidemic of sickness in the neighborhood. The young doctor was in the saddle day and night. He merely had time, the day of the wedding, to ride up to the young lady's house, throw his bridle-rein over the hitching post, walk into the house and go thorough the ceremon, kiss the bride and ride away to his patients, not to show up again for several days. That young doctor was certainly devoted to his business."


A half dozen pages, typed, single space, and written by Hamilton Reddick Stillson describe his father and life of the times. The following is an excerpt of some of the more intresting and amusing portions.

"-- always burdened with more patients than he could well attend to. He had very little time to devote to his children or his home, but there were two days in the year when he insisted in having a little fun, one was the Fourth of July, the other the Pigeon Shoot. The Pigeon Shoot came about annually in this way: Once each year there would be a migration of pigeons in Indiana. Vast numbers of pigeons would fly across the state - so many that at times the sky would actually be clouded with them. They had a favorite roosting place down West of town, and when they would settle among the trees they would actually break the limbs of the trees at times. This roosting place was near a brewers, and father would throw a couple of gunny sacks in his buggy and join the crowd of hunters at the brewery. After they had all fortified themselves with a sufficient number of drinks, they would go out under the trees and blaze away their old shotguns. Of course, scores of birds would fall at every shot; and after the brave hunters had filled up on beer some more, those that could do so would come home 'loaded.' Let me say a word or two here in extenuation of 'this drinking business,' as Harry Lauder would say. It was not considered disgraceful, in those days, for a man to get 'full'. Especially the doctor. The life of the pioneer physician in Indiana was a hard life. The roads were exceedingly bad; the weather, especially in winter and early spring, was vile - cold and wet; the rides were usually long and depressing and fatiguing, so when the doctor arrived at the patient's house, it was the custom to have a hot drink ready for the doctor. After he had made several such calls, he would usually become pretty well ginned up, but no one considered that drinking interfered with his professional skill. Practically every family had whiskey in the house. Malaria was prevalent, and a mixture of whiskey and quinine was considered absolutely necessary for its cure. ... They used a good deal of 'mulled cider too. They would let apple cider become 'hard' then they would thrust a red-hot poker into a mug of it and let the poker burn out the bitter taste. The cider would taste quite mellow and rich. They made a good deal of blackberry wine and cordial, too in those days. Father used to make kegs of them which he would store in the cellar and use in making bitters, cough mixtures, etc. Some of those old cough patients thought father was a wonderful doctor, and would keep coming back for more of 'that cough medicine' as long as the keg would hold out.

THEY KISSED HIS HAND: I should like to have you revere my father's name. Of course, viewed in the bright light of modern science, he was ignorant of many things in medicine, but he was devoted to his patients and to the best he could practice in his profession. It was really touching to witness the faith his patients had, and to see how grateful they were to him. Many a time the patients would kiss his hand at the bedside and croon an expression of gratitude. Gratitude was all that some of them had to give, and some of them even failed to give that. In settling up his estate for him, I found cases where he had brought a baby into the world, had attended the child through various sickness incident to childhood and had officiated at the birth of the young man's first baby, all without ever having received so much as a thank you for his trouble. It was noticeable that the patients who had not paid and who never expected to pay were the very ones who were the most exacting in their demands for his time and attention, but father gave them all the best he had.

A SHARK FOR WORK:My father was a shark for work at his profession. I have to smile when contrasting his career with that of modern physicians who refuse to answer the phone after certain hours, who take a day or tow off for golf every week, who go fishing whenever they want to, etc. My father was on the job day and night - all the time. Of course it was not good for him to work so hard, but there was always sever sickness in the neighborhood, and it seemed as though he could not refuse to answer the calls. One trouble was that it gave him so little time for sleep. He used to say that often he would be followed up by messengers who would overtake him and hurry him from one case to another without


letting him come homer for several days. So common was this, that he would often hide away while making his visits - sleep in someone's barn, get off his horse, spread his horse-blanket in the corner of the fence for a short nap and hide away at some friend's house on the way home, etc. On familiar roads,a nd few roads were not familiar, he could sleep in the saddle, trusting his horse to bring him home. One old saddle mare was especially to be trusted. "Kate" was her name. She was named for my little sister, Kate, who died, and who was a dear little thing.

Father told me that Kate was a 'bull-pup'. I never knew just what kind of horse a bull-pup was, but Kate seemed to be a mixture between a thoroughbred and a mustang. She certainly was a sagacious animal. She not only knew the roads better than father did, but she could feel her way in the dark better than he could. Trees often fell across the trail they were traveling. IF the night was too dark for these trees to be seen, old Kate would toss her head from side to side or up and down when she would come to a fallen tree and thus locate it before running into it.

THE ONE HORSE FERRIES: All of father's horses could swim. There were very few bridges across the streams in those days, but most of the streams were low in the dry season; but when fall rains came, the streams often would rise suddenly to great heights. Of course, swollen streams could not be permitted to stop the doctor, so when father would come to a swollen stream, it it were too deep to ride across, he would fasten his saddle-bags to the pommel of the horse, ride in as far as he could, give the horse the reins, slide off the horse, grab the tail and let the horse ferry him across the stream. Saddle-bags well a doctor's saddle-bags in those days consisted of a couple of leather receptacles joined by a layer of leather, which were thrown across the saddle, and on which he sat. These receptacles held his medicines etc. Preachers also used to use a similar kind of pack when they would go around from one town to another as "circuit riders" as they were called, but the preachers used the packs to bring home donation of bacon, spuds or whatever the church members could give. From this custom arose the expression "bringing home the bacon." I must confess that father, too, used to be glad to bring home a slab of bacon or a fat hen, or what have you, from some of his patients. Many of them never seemed to be able to save up any money for the doctor, but many could spare something to eat.

Father like to work with machinery. He had all sorts of machines rigged up. I remember one that I thought was wonderful. It was a feed ginder that was run by means of a horse that walked around and around in a circle. It would grind into meal the corn, cob and all. Another was a "fodder hog" that would tear into small shreds the dried cornstalks. I used to get into troubl playing with the various machines when no one was looking....My father ws quite ingenious, not only with machines, but with medicines. He originated several "medicines" - Dr. Stillson's Pepsin and Stillson's Liver Pills - were two that would have made him famous if he had advertised them. Father was ingenious with the cultivation of plants - fully as ingenious as Burbank was as far as father experimented. After years of careful breeding and selection, he produced a king of sugar-corn that was large, prolific and delightfully sweet. He was similarly successful in the cultivation of a new and superior kind of garden pea, and so on."

The description of Joseph Stillson ends with the following:

p. 132

AND UNSELFISHNESS: My father was one of the most self-sacrificing men I ever knew. He literally wore himself out in the service of others. The hard work and severe exposure incident to the practice of his profession brought on a stroke. The stroke was so severe that we hardly expected him to recover. But he did - and instead of learning by the stroke, to be careful of his health, he soon was as active as ever. Another stroke followed from which he never fully recovered, one arm and one leg continued to be more or less paralyzed. This paralysis became worse, and finally, he fell asleep in his wheelchair, never to wake. Thus he died, Bedford, Indiana, September 15, 1885, in his seventieth year of age."

Even more text is devoted by Hamilton Reddick Stillson to his mother. The following is an excerpt:

MY MOTHER: I want you to revere my mother, too. I suppose everyone thinks his mother is the best mother in the world, but, in my case, it seemed literally true. She certainly was a wondeful mother to me. She was the eldest daughter of Squire Hamilton Reddick of Harrodsburg, was nineteen years old when she married father, and must have been a very sweet and winsome Irish lassie. I remember that even when she was a comparatively old woman, she still retained that schoolgir complexion, clear skin, peaches and cream complexion and rosy cheeks... The Reddicks were quite prominent people in those early days as I understood from what mother said about them. The original Reddick homestead was a tract of two hundred and eighty acres of fertile land through which the first State Pike (main highway) from Indianapolis to New Albany extended. Squire Reddick, my mothers father, extablished a bus station (where the horses and passengers were accommodated, and around this bus station quite a community grew up. I am sorry I did not record what mother said about where the Reddicks came from, but I think they came originally from Pennsylvania. Mother had two sisters and three brothers, all of whom became prominent and influential. John, the first born, was a smart man. He became a lawyer and was elected to Congress from Paducah, Kentucky. James, the next son, also was a lawyer of great promis, but died early in his professional career. Washington, the third son, became a physician, interrupted his practice at Harrodsburg to take part for a year or so in the Gold rush to California. Upon his return to Indiana, he settled at Winnamac, Indiana, where his son, Hamilton, became a prominent educator and was associated with me in conducting the Red Bluff College, at Red Bluff, California. Aunt Marry married John Bickel, whose name was variously spelled and variously pronounced from Beecel, Peecel and Bickel to Pickel, but who was a well though of farmer on the old Reddick homestead, or what remained of it after the various heirs had their shares. Aunt Mary married John in 1850 when she was twenty-eight.

MOTHER'S ACCOMPLISHMENTS: In comparison with modern co-eds, mother was not very highly educated. There were no common schools in those days as we know them. In fact, there were only three or four schools of higher learning in the state.... Certainly when she was dressed in her stiff, shiny silk brocade dress, had on those long dangling ear-bobs, and the wonderful cameo brooch at her throat, her big ostrich feather fan, perfumed with oil of bergamot, waving to and fro in stately grandeur, she was a very impressing, and to me, rather awe-inspiring spectacle. You see, she was the wife of a physician, and the wives of physicians had to fulfill traditions and to maintain prestige for the physician in those days, ws quite a superior person, you may be sure...

My mother was a Democrat, but she always hastened to explain that she was a "Douglas Democrat" not a "Davis Democrat and certainly at that time the doctrine of States Sovereignty as advocated by Douglas, seemed to be granted by the Constitution. She used to say, "If the doctrine is not right in principle, why was the charge of treason not pushed in the trial of Jefferson Davis?" That is to say: IF secession was not a right granted to the states by the Constitution, why was the secession of the Southern states never

Cont. of 6th Gen. and this story

cont. 6th GENERATION







Last Updated Thursday, 21-Sep-2000 18:00:36 MDT