Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Weathervane Wednesday ~ A Flock of Birds

I post another in a series of weather vane photographs every Wednesday.  This started with images of weathervanes from the Londonderry, New Hampshire area, but now I've found interesting weather vanes all across New England and across the globe.  Sometimes my weather vanes are whimsical, or historical, but all are interesting.  Often my readers tip me off to some very unique or unusual weathervanes, too!  If you know a great weather vane near you, let me know if you'd like to have it featured on this blog.

Today's weather vanes were photographed in New Hampshire.  Two on one house!

Do you know the location of weathervane post #316?  Scroll down to find the answer.

The three geese are on the building to the left,
and the heron is on the building to the right

These two lovely bird weather vanes were seen on a farmhouse on Meetinghouse Road in Bedford, New Hampshire.  This is a large home in the "Big House, Little House, Back House, Barn" style, with an additional garage.   These weathervanes were both installed on cupolas above the roof ridges.  This home dates to 1826.

Over the garage is the elaborate weather vane with the three flying geese.  Birds of all types are popular weathervanes in New England, and usually I see one eagle or one goose, but this group of three is especially nice.   Over the larger barn building is the heron weathervane.  Both weathervanes feature the birds in flight, which ties them together nicely.

I have driven by these two weathervanes many times in the past few years, but finally in April we found a place to pull over so we could walk to the road in front of this home to take photographs.  When the trees leaf out it will be difficult to see these.

Click here to learn more about the typical New England "Big House, Little House, Backhouse, Barn" style of farmhouse:

Click here to see the entire Weathervane Wednesday series of posts!


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Weathervane Wednesday ~ A Flock of Birds", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 21, 2017, ( accessed [access date]).

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Tombstone Tuesday ~ A Young Man and his Infant Daughter

These gravestones were photographed at the Riverside Cemetery, on Rt. 3A, in Hooksett, New Hampshire.

Dau. of
N.K & M.
Aug. 20, 1849
AE 1 yr 10 mo.
How gloomy all where
She sweetly smil'd

Dec. 2, 1847
AEt. 27
Here lies one we lost so dear
His loss to us it seems severe
But in the silent grave we must leave him
Till the resurrection morn
Then our Saviour will receive him
And restore his lovely form. 

Hazen Davis, born 1796, died 4 May 1858; married Sally Kennerson.  She died 19 June 1854.  They had five children including Nehemiah Kennerson Davis.  Nehemiah was born in 1820 and married Maria French in 1843.  When he was only 27 years old he was killed on the railroad in Hooksett on 2 December 1847.  According to A Genealogy of the Descendants of Abraham Colby and Elizabeth Blaisdell, by Harrison Colby, 1895, page 113 “He was a captain of the militia, in which he took much delight.”   Nehemiah had one child, Alice, born 20 October 1847, barely a month and a half before his untimely death.  She died 20 August 1849 aged 1 year and 10 months.

According to “AuntieJ” at Find A Grave, this headstone was standing upright in 2012 when she photographed it and wrote this note “Nehemiah is buried near Hazen Davis.  Grave stone is close to the fence, making an odd angle necessary in order to get a shot of the entire stone.”  Apparently, sometime in the last five years this stone fell and was placed face up.  

Nehemiah K. Davis at Find A Grave:

Alice Davis at Find A Grave:


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Tombstone Tuesday ~ A Young Man and his Infant Daughter", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 20, 2017, ( accessed [access date]). 

Monday, June 19, 2017

Joshua Burnham Proves his Military Service

The Colonel Burnham Homestead in Milford, New Hampshire

Joshua Burnham, my 5th great grandfather, served in the American Revolutionary War, and in 1818 he decided to apply for a military pension.  Lest you think that paperwork, red tape and bureaucracy are anything new, you should read this blog post.

Joshua Burnham, son of Stephen Burnham and Mary Andrews, was born In Gloucester, Massachusetts on 26 January 1754.  He served in the Revolutionary War in 1775 for eight months, and re-enlisted for 1776- 1777 for a term of one year.  In 1779 he married Jemima Wyman, the daughter of Increase Wyman, in Wilton, New Hampshire.  They lived on a large farm in Milford, in a beautiful old homestead which is still standing today as “The Colonel Joshua Burnham Tavern”.  

It appears that Joshua Burnham sold his land and homestead.  He ran into hard times and in 1818 he had to apply for a military pension.  Here are some of the documents he submitted to prove his military career.  Below you will see a sworn affidavit from Joshua, and another three depositions from three friends who served in the military with him during the Revolution.  Each affidavit also has another sworn statement by a court clerk, guaranteeing that the signatures of the friends are genuine. 

I Joshua Burham of Milford in the Coun-
ty of Hillsborough and State of New Hamp-
shire aged sixty four years, declare and
say That in the month of April in the
year one thousand seven hundred and
seventy five at said Milford, then called
Amherst, I enlisted as a private soldier
In Capt. Josiah Crosby’s Company in Col.
James Read’s Regiment in the New Hampshire line in the American
Army to serve eight months and served
the whole of said eight months in said
Crosby’s Company- at the end of which
I enlisted as a private soldier in Capt. ----
Jones’ Company in said Read’s Regiment
To serve one year and served the whole
Of said year in said Jones’ Company-
Serving all said time of service.  I served
at Bunker Hill, New York, Philadelphia, and
in Canada ?? said was in the battle at
Bunker Hill & I was discharged from the
Service with others by the ???
of the Officer, at a place called Aesapus farmer
But known by the name of Kingstown in
the State of New York.
I further declare that I am in reduced
circumstances, have no property, and
am in need of relief and support having
no way to support myself but by my labor,
and my health is very poor beside being
lame in one of my ankles & which has
been a confirmed complaint for about
four years last ??
Witnesses to signature                       Joshua Burnham
Solomon Kittridge
Nathl. Shattuck              sworn to this ????
                                         Before me G. Smith        Associate Justice of the
                                                                                   Court of Common Pleas

I Israel Burnham of Lyndeborough in the
County of Hillsborough do solemnly swear
that I am well acquainted with Joshua Burham
who has given his affidavit on the other side of this
that I know him to be the same person who
served with me in the Continental establish-
ment faithfully for the term of one year in Capt.
Jones’ Company in Col. James Reed’s Regt. In the
New Hampshire Line his service commenced in
Jan. A.D. 1776 & ended in Jan. A.D. 1777.  I was dis-
charged on account of sickness about one fort-
night before my time expired.    ?? the said
Joshua in the service I have no doubt in my
mind but he served out his time.  I was honestly
discharged as he did not return home for about
three weeks after my return.  We both lived
in the same town.
Sworn to this 6th day of July 1818                       Israel Burnam
Before me   J. H. Smith           Associate Justice of Court of C. Pleas

I Nathl. Shattuck of Amherst depose and say
That I have been acquainted with Joshua
Burnam before mentioned for about four-
teen years- I further say that I have had op-
portunity to be acquainted with his property
and know that by misfortune in the
business of a trader he has become poor
and wholly destitute of property, and stands
in need of relief- that he is old and infirm
in health and lame in one of his feet.
Sworn to this 31st day of March AD 1818                    Nathl. Shattuck
before me                J. H. Smith  Associate Justice of the Court
                                                        of Common Pleas

I Joseph Leavitt of Amherst in the County
Of Hillsborough aforesaid do solemnly swear
That I am well acquainted with Joshua Burham
And who has given his affidavit on this sheet
I know him to be the same person who served
In the Continental establishment for the term
Of one year commencing the first part of
Jan. A. D. 1776 & ending the fore part of Jan.
A.D. 1777 his service was alone in Col Reed’s
Reg. in the New Hampshire Line in Capt.
Jones’ Company at which time I served in the
Same Regt. And left the said Joshua in the
Army as he was sick & unable to travel when
I was discharged.  I ??ed to the same Town
With him, now it, Amherst
Sworn to this 6th day of                   Joseph Leavitt
July 1818 Before me                        J. H. Smith -  Associate Justice
                                                                                   The Court of C. Pleas

This certifies that Nathaniel Shattuck, Israel Burnham,
And Joseph Leavitt are all credible witnesses in
Court of Law -             J. H. Smith -            Associate Justice of the
                                                                       Court of Common Pleas


Joshua Burnham was granted his pension in July 1818.  He died in 1835 and his widow applied for a pension which she received until her death in 1843.  I’ll blog more about this next week, because poor widow Jemima Burnham had to do even more paperwork to prove her marriage and her case for her widow’s pension. 

Click on this link for a previous blog post about Col. Joshua Burnham:


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, “Joshua Burnham Proves His Military Service”, Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 19, 2017, ( accessed [access date]). 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Sail Boston 2017 ~ The Tall Ships Have Arrived!

Eagle, US Coast Guard

Yesterday, Saturday June 17, the Sail Boston parade of Tall Ships was delayed about an hour because of heavy fog.  We viewed the parade from the 26th floor observation deck of the Boston Custom tower, and from the 12th floor.  The parade was led by the American coast guard tall ship Eagle, which docked at the Charlestown Navy Yard. 

The tall ships will be in port in Boston until Thursday, June 22nd.  You can view them in their berths from the Navy Yard all the way down to the seaport district at various wharves.  You can visit them in their berths, walk the seaport and view them, or take a water tour which will take you up close to the ships. We did all three!  Many seaport and waterfront restaurants have excellent views, too.

Check the website for more information. 

The Eagle

A cannon salute!

Yes, those are sailors in the rigging
Esmeralda, from Chile

El Galeon from Spain
Click this link to see a blog post about El Galeon's 2016 visit

Oliver Hazard Perry from Rhode Island

Alexander Von Humboldt II, Germany

Nantucket Lightship, not part of the parade of Tall Ships
but it is berthed in East Boston

We viewed the Parade of Sail
from the Custom Tower before our cruise

Boston, seen from the middle of the inner harbor

Navy Yard full of Tall Ships

USS Constitution, in dry dock in the
Charlestown Navy Yard, and the
Bunker Hill Monument

The Coast Guard Eagle berthed in the Charlestown Navy Yard

Custom Tower and
The Old North Church

Europa, from the Netherlands at the
Boston Harbor Hotel seen from the water

The arch at the Harbor Hotel
seen from Atlantic Avenue and
the Europa

Lots of Tall Ships can be seen along the harbor walk near the
Federal Court House in the seaport district


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Sail Boston 2017 ~ The Tall Ships Have Arrived!", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 18, 2017, ( accessed [access date]).

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to all the fathers, grandfathers, stepfathers, "just like fathers", and other special men in the family!

I miss my Dad every Father's Day
Here he was, Jack Wilkinson, as a very young man in 1972
camping at "Maurice's" in Eastham, Massachusetts on Cape Cod

Here's my maternal grandfather, Stanley Allen,
with me and my little sister
at his house in Hamilton, Massachusetts 1975

Vincent, a few minutes after becoming a new father!  1987


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Happy Father's Day", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 18, 2017, ( accessed [access date]). 

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Surname Saturday ~ BLACKMAN of Stratford, Connecticut


Adam Blackman, my 10th great grandfather, is of unknown origins, but it is thought he might be from Staffordshire, England. He matriculated at Christ’s College at Oxford University on 28 May 1617 at age 19.  He was ordained as a priest of the Church of England, and he preached at Great Bowden, Leicestershire and in Derbyshire.  During the 1630s he began to follow the Puritan movement. 

It is not known when he came to New England with his family.  He might have traveled under an assumed name since he was a “non-conformist”.  In 1638 he lived at Scituate, Massachusetts. A plantation was ordered in Connecticut in 1639 and Rev. Adam Blakeman was installed as the first minister at Stratford.  He was granted a four acre house lot across from the meetinghouse.  He served as minister there until his death on 7 September 1665. 

His daughter, Mary, is my 9th great grandmother, and his grandson, Joshua Atwater, is my 8th great grandfather.  Rev. Blakeman’s will mentions Joshua Atwater:

“Item.  Concerning my books which I intended for my son Benjamin, seeing his thoughts are after another course of life--that his thoughts be not to attend the work of Christ in the ministry, my wish is that my son Atwater (son-in-law) make his son Joshua a scholar and fit him for that work. I give unto him all my Latin books; but if not they shall be put into my estate and disposed of as my wife any my overseers shall think fit."

Some resources for Rev. Blackman:

The Descendants of Reverend Adam Blackman (1598 - 1665) and His Wife Jane, by Ellwood Count Curtis, Galactic Press, 2006

History And Genealogy Of The Families Of Old Fairfield, by Donald Lines Jacobus,   (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1976) Pp. 81-84

History Of Stratford, Connecticut, 1639-1939 by William Howard Wilcoxson,  (The Stratford Tercentenary Commission, 1939) Pp. 69, 80-81. 

My BLACKMAN genealogy:

Generation 1:  Reverend Adam Blackman, born about 1598 in England, died 7 September 1665 in Stratford, Connecticut; married to Jane Unknown.  Six children.

Generation 2: Mary Blackman, born about 1635, died 9 March 1709 in Salem, Massachusetts; married 6 May 1651 in Stratford to Joshua Atwater, son of John Atwater and Susan Narsin.  He was baptized 2 June 1611 in Lenham, Kent, England and died 16 May 1676 in Boston, Massachusetts. Ten children.

Generation 3: Joshua Atwater m. Rebecca Unknown
Generation 4: Rebecca Atwater m. Lemon Beadle
Generation 5: Rebecca Beadle m. John Becket
Generation 6: Hannah Becket m. Joseph Cloutman
Generation 7: Mary Cloutman m. Abijah Hitchings
Generation 8: Abijah Hitchings m. Eliza Ann Treadwell
Generation 9: Abijah Franklin Hitchings m. Hannah Eliza Lewis
Generation 10: Arthur Treadwell Hitchings m. Florence Etta Hoogerzeil
Generation 11: Gertrude Matilda Hitchings m. Stanley Elmer Allen


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, “Surname Saturday ~ BLACKMAN of Stratford, Connecticut”, Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 18, 2017, ( accessed [access date]). 

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Flag Day 2017 in the Manchester Millyard, New Hampshire

Back in 1914 Amoskeag Manufacturing mill workers gathered in front of this big flag, for an iconic image that has become part of American folklore.  This photograph by Harlan Marshall has been seen in documentaries, museums, textbooks and advertisements.  I've always loved this photo, especially all the excited mill workers hanging out of the windows!

photo from the Manchester Historic Association website 

Today, Flag Day, at 11:30 this morning, the Brady Sullivan Properties unveiled another big flag in the millyard on the west bank of the Merrimack River.  It is on the Lofts at Millyard West apartment complex.  It will remain here until Monday, June 19th, and will be illuminated at night. Anyone driving through Manchester on the Everett Turnpike (Rt. 293) will have a great view.

Seen from Arms Park across the Merrimack River

Click on this link for a previous blog post about this famous image, and the history of this photograph:

A story about "The Great Flag" and today's ceremony from the Manchester Ink Link website:

Arms Park, with the flag across the River

The famous 1914 image recreated in Lego at the SEE Museum in the Manchester Millyard


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Flag Day 2017 in the Manchester Millyard, New Hampshire", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 14, 2017, ( accessed [access date]).

Flag Day!

This flag was photographed in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts

The steeple to the left is the First Parish Congregational Church, and the flagpole is located in the little park just in front of the town hall.   If you look close you can see two weathervanes in this photo, too!

The church weathervane was previously posted at this link:

The almost indecipherable fire engine weathervane near the flagpole is above "Seaside #1", an old fire station now part of the Manchester Historical Society, and I have a previous "Weathervane Wednesday" post about this weathervane at this link:


Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Flag Day!", Nutfield Genealogy, posted June 14, 2017, ( accessed [access date]).