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The Story Behind the Story. The TextBook of the Washington Benevolent Society




The Story Behind the Story. The TextBook of the Washington Benevolent Society. Concord {New Hampshire} 1812. Signed E Bullock, Secretary. (After research, ‘E Bullock’ was determined to Be Experience Bullock, the only “E Bullock” located during this time period in the county. Noted in Before Equal Suffrage that there was evidence that ladies in Boston attended functions held by the Washington Benevolent Society and in 1812 describes a local gathering of women in Vermont, perhaps indicating that women were involved in the Society.) Experience Bullock (1792-1832) daughter of Mary Martin and Seth Bullock, married Merrill Hoyt in 1814. She was a niece of Sylvester Martin (1765-1856) whose Membership certificate is found within (certifies that  Martin has been regularly admitted a member of the Society…established at Grafton New Hampshire on the twentieth day of February 1812.  A painter by trade, he was a son of Mary Horton (1744-1805) and Seth Martin (1745-1817). In 1772, when the first 12 settlers arrived in Grafton, Seth Martin was among them with Captain Joseph Hoyt and Hezekiah Bullock. On April 18, 1774, they met at the home of Martin to vote on a warrant to formally allocate the twelve lots required to be settled in the charter. Seth Martin received the NO. 12-13 lots which was to become Razor Hill and where he is buried. Seth served in the Revolutionary War, and appears  on the payroll of Col. Jonathan Chase's Regiment, which reinforced the Northern Continental Army at Ticonderoga by General Falson's order May 7, 1777. Seth appears on the payroll in Col. Jonathan Chases's Regiment, which marched from Cornish in Sept. 1777 and joined the Continental Army under General Gates near Saratoga. They descend from Ephraim Martin (1676-1734) a minister in Rehoboth, son of immigrant John Martin (1634-1713). It is believed the signature of the Society’s President was E. Blasdell, presumably Elijah Blasdell born in 1782. After working as a shoemaker he began to study law. He was in Grafton briefly and in the fall of 1812 removed to Canaan. He began in politics as a Federalist and held the office of judge of probate, and represented Canaan in the legislature. The Washington Benevolent Societies were grass-roots political clubs with a semi secret membership; set up 1808-1816 by the Federalist Party in the U.S. to electioneer for votes, the first of these societies was "instituted in the City of New York, July, 1808. Contains a biography of George Washington, his Farewell Address to the people of the United States and the Constitution with amendments, portrait of Washington as frontispiece “his path be ours”. Published by George Hough (1757-1830) a private in the New Haven Alarm on 9 July 1779, he became a printer who started The Vermont Journal in 1783, later moved to Concord, NH, and started the first paper there, The Concord Herald, in 1787. Interesting to note the membership was Feb 20th and not the 22nd which would have been Washington’s 80th birthday.     900


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