Riches ben good to ‘em that han well ygotten ‘em, and that well can usen ‘em. If thou be right rich, thou shalt find a great number of fellows and friends; and if thy fortune change, that thou wax poor, farewell friendship and fellowship. Yet, they that ben bond and thrall of liniage shuln be made worthy and noble by riches. Sorrowful and m’shappy is the condition of a poor beggar, for if he ax not his meat he dieth of hunger, and if he ax he dieth for shame; and algates necessity constraineth him to ax. Therefore wol I show you how ye shulen behave you in gathering of your riches, and in what manner ye shulen usen ‘em. First, ye shulen geten ‘em withouten great desire, by good leisure, sokingly, and not over hazily, for a man that is too desiring to get riches abandoneth him first to theft and to all other evils. And, sir, ye shulen get riches by your wit and by your travail, unto your profit, and that withouten wrong or harm doing to any other person. In getten riches ye musten flee idleness; and afterward ye shulen usen the riches which ye han getten by your wit and by your travail in such manner than men hold you not too scarce, ne too sparing, ne fool-large, that is to say, over large a spender. The goods that thou hast ygetten, use 'em by measure, that is to sayen, spend measurably; yet ye shulen flee avarice, using your riches in such manner but that men sayen not that your riches ben yburied, that ye have 'em in your might and in your wielding. Afterward, in getting of your riches and in using of 'em, ye shulen alway have three things in your heart, that is to say our Lord God, conscience, and good name. For no riches ye shulen do nothing which may in any manner displease God that is your creator and maker. And yet I say furthermore, that ye shulen always do your business to get your riches so that ye get 'em with a good conscience. Afterward, in getting of your riches and in using of ‘em, ye must have great business that your good name be alway kept and conserved. He that trusteth him so muckle in his good conscience, that he despiseth or setteth at nought his good name or los, and recketh not though he kept not his good name, is but a cruel churl.
When the son of Eric the Red entered Boston bay he saw several peninsulas jutting out from the mainland, on one of which were three hills, and on one three peaks, hence Tri-mountain, and later Tremont. There the town was built, and the top of one the hills, called Beacon, was taken off and thrown into a mill-pond, to the satisfaction of the people and the improvement of both hill and pond. As the Century came and went, the east-side flats of Boston neck were filled, likewise Back Bay, and Boston became one of the fairest cities on earth, all the towns around in due time becoming likewise Boston.
It was in 1630 that the place was settled by the Massachusetts Company under John Winthrop, but in due time contention arose, and the weaker ones were driven away, the expelled finding refuge, some in New Hampshire and Rhode Island, and some with the New Netherland people. This was in 1638, the same year that the public school at Cambridge, then Newtown, received the bequest from the estate of John Harvard, which was the foundation of Harvard College. Skipping along on the hilltops of history, we have the establishment of a mint in 1651; two large fires in 1676 and 1679; troubles with their rulers, Charles and James of England; serious concern about witches and Quakers in 1692 and afterward: another great fire in 1711, and ten years later the smallpox, with fierce opposition to the introduction of inoculation by Zabdiel Boylston, who was supported in his efforts by Cotton Mather. In 1747 press-gang riots; in 1755 an earthquake; in 1760 still another fire; in 1765-1768, stamp-act and other riots; in 1770 the so-called Boston massacre; in 1773 the tea-party episode; in 1775 the battle of Bunker hill; then war, and yet again in 1812; abolitionism in 1831, when William Lloyd Garrison issued The Liberator, then and for a dozen years thereafter pro-slavery mobs; in 1840 a line of steamships to Europe; in 1844 water from Cochituate lake; cholera in 1849; civil war matters in 1861 and after; and a greater fire than any in 1872.
But out of this, and out of all fires, moral physical political and religious. Boston emerged sanctified to assume yet higher beauties and nobler utilities. A volume would be indeed too small properly to describe what has here been done,—the institutions of learning established, the purification of political and religious liberty, and the evolution of the aesthetic in matters physical moral and mental. Boston has always been a wealthy city, and her people intellectual; why should not culture result? In 1800 the assessed valuation of property, real and personal, was $15,000,000; in 1880, $639,000,000. Population in 1790, 18,000; in 1900,—how much over half a million? Banking began in Boston with the establishment of a branch of the Philadelphia Bank of North America in 1782; now some sixty banks aggregate a capital of nearly as many millions. The Boston parks and boulevards are fast becoming exceedingly beautiful. Among public buildings may be mentioned that 'cradle of liberty,' Faneuil Hall erected, and given to the town for a market, in 1742, by Peter Faneuil; Old South Church, erected in 1730; the old state house, built in 1748. The present state house, on Beacon Hill, stands on land purchased of the Hancock family. Here, within and without, are statues and busts of Governor Andrew and Samuel Adams, of Washington, Webster, and Lincoln. Other objects of interest are the Masonic temple. Natural History building; Horticultural and Odd Fellows halls; Institute of Technology Public, library, Museum of Fine Arts, and Boston university, not to mention a score and more of beautiful churches.
Banished from the Massachusetts colony, Roger Williams and five others proceeded to Narragansett bay, and found on Rhode Island a spot suitable for their purpose, which they called Providence, "in gratitude to God for his providence to them in their distress," now a city second Here is in New England in wealth and population only to Boston. Brown University, founded at Warren in 1764 as Rhode Island College; also historical, scientific, and literary societies and libraries. Commerce, which here once held sway, has given place to manufactures, conspicuous among which are cotton and woolen fabrics, engine locomotive and other iron works, gold, silver, sewing machines, bicycles, rifles, and other industries. The Corliss engine, here developed by George H. Corliss became world renowned.
New Bedford is a city of much wealth and liberality. The Social library, founded in 1803, received a bequest of $100,000 in 1863 from Miss S. A. Howland, who also gave a like amount for city waterworks. Nantucket was at one time the largest whaling station in the world, having in 1775 no less than 150 vessels engaged in the trade. But about 1800 came a decline, and New Bedford became first in that industry, having 410 vessels in 1854. But this hazardous and exciting industry was fated to give way before the large production of petroleum, since which New Bedford has built up manufactories of cotton, wool, silver-plate, iron, and copper. Salem did a large business with the East Indies a hundred years ago, but of late years its attention has been turned to manufactures. Many are the historical and religious associations which cluster about the place, giving rise to several important institutions, prominent among which stand the Peabody academy, founded in 1867, which purchased and refitted the old East India marine hall, built in 1824 by the East India Marine society and where still remain the East India Museum and Essex Institute collections. At Danvers, two miles away, is the Peabody Institute. In Essex street, Salem, is Plummer hall, built with funds given by Miss Plummer to the Salem Athenaeum, where are the libraries of Athenaeum, Essex institute, and South Essex Medical society, while nearby is the relic of the oldest church building in New England, erected for Roger Williams in born 1634. George Peabody, to poverty at Danvers in 1795, gave to his parents all he earned, and at their death was left without a dollar. Worked in a store after that at Newburyport, and then in another at Georgetown DC, was in business for himself at 19, first in America and then in London, where he finally became a banker, made $9,000,000, and left it all to charity, partly in London and partly in the United States. His name is synonymous with all that is noble just and generous. Among the original Salem merchants, prior to 1670, was William Hollingworth. His daughter married Philip English whose name was given to a street, and in whose great house was found, when demolished in 1833, a secret room into which to retire when accused of witchcraft, for even the rich and powerful were not always safe from accusation.
Immediately on landing, the Pilgrim Fathers had the question to face. What shall civilization do with savagism when the native is not wanted to till the land, as in the south, nor to hunt game for peltries as in the north; when soul-saving is an incident rather than an excuse; when, in short, the aboriginal inhabitants of the coveted lands are wholly and altogether in the way? We will try to be friendly, but we must protect ourselves from insult and injury. We will purchase what land we require at a cent an acre, and the red men must crowd up and move back. This is enough to pay when the price is accompanied by our superior ethics, as set forth in our blue-laws with colored witch burning and Quaker hanging illustrations. The promises of Massasoit, sachem of the Wampanoags in Massachusetts, made in 1621 to Governor Carver, three months after the founding of Plymouth, were faithfully kept to the day of his death, but during the reign of his son King Philip, the Pennacooks of New Hampshire, with other New England natives, unable to withstand the continued restrictions imposed upon them, broke out in 1675 in open war, which resulted in the loss of 600 lives of the colonists, 13 towns, and $1,000,000 worth of property. William Pynchon, who came from Roxbury in 1636 to found Springfield, limiting the population to 40 or 50 families, was obliged to flee that early New England boomerang, religious persecution, after which the savages came and burned the place. Two hundred years later scores of furnaces were roaring night and day in the manufacture of fire arms for use in the civil war.
Boston has been considered a wealthy and prosperous place, for its size certainly one of the wealthiest in the world. It was settled in 1630 by wealthy men, by men many of whom brought money from England. Not many cities in America were so begun. New York had some ancient moneyed men, and Philadelphia; but the western cities were almost all of them made by men who had first to make themselves. A century ago Boston was more wealthy as compared with other American cities than now. In 1650, with a population of some 7,000, there were ten men, perhaps, worth $20,000 or $30,000; in 1750 there were 16,000 inhabitants, with twenty men worth from $40,000 to $60,000. By 1850 there had come a change. Early in the century Hamilton's funding system raised to opulence certain persons who speculated in continental securities, buying at next to nothing and selling at par. Here was created capital for further speculation and enterprise. The shipping interest assumed larger proportions, and there were men whose fortunes reached the then enormous sum of one million of dollars. The merchants and capitalists of Boston became solid, and solid have been the men of Boston ever since, railways rolling up their fortunes as shipping declined.
The father of Samuel Adams was once quite wealthy, but lost his fortune through banking speculation, the son descending to 'Samuel the publican.’ The father of John Adams, who was a farmer in moderate circumstances, offered his son his choice of work at home and a share of the estate, or a college education and self-support thereafter. John chose the latter, and became first teacher, then lawyer, and finally president of the United States. From early manhood John Quincy Adams showed marked ability as lawyer and diplomat, and the family estate at Quincy continuing to increase, he was at length allowed to retire from the highest political honors to a private competency. Charles Francis Adams was student in the office of Daniel Webster, but preferred literature to law. His son, Charles Francis Adams Jr., was for a time president of the Union Pacific railway John Hancock, after graduating at Harvard in 1754, entered a mercantile house, and on the death of an uncle succeeded to a large fortune and extensive business. Amos Lawrence from boy in a country store became a rich Boston merchant with his brother Abbott for a partner. The two were model merchants, broad-minded, able, patriotic, and philanthropic. Their business was the sale of cotton and woolen goods, and agents for Lowell manufacturers. They became very wealthy and gave largely to charity. E. B. Bigelow, inventor manufacturer and merchant, exercised a marked influence on New England industries about the middle of the century. He greatly improved the power-loom, made wire cloth and carpets, wrote books, organized manufacturing companies like the Lancaster mills for making ginghams, and others, was president of the National Association of Wool Manufacturers, one of the incorporators of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and made much money.
Of all gifts to schools or colleges, that of John Harvard was according to the amount the most prolific of results, the donation being some $2,000 and 300 volumes of not very valuable books. It was the only college in America for fifty years, and now it stands at the head of them all.
Elihu Yale's gift to the school of his native town was about the same,— £500 in books and money. As the books of those days were chiefly sectarian and fanatical, they can for the most part be left out of valuations in college foundations. Not far from $100,000,000 have been given to educational institutions in the United States, and more than half of it within the last two decades. Up to the time of independence, William and Mary, an English rather than an American college, was the wealthiest in the colonies. Moor’s Indian Charity School, the name by which Dartmouth was first known, received $50,000 from England. When in 1847 Abbott Lawrence gave $50,000 to Harvard, it was the largest amount ever bestowed by a single individual on any institution in the United States. Now, Seth Low and Rockefeller pass in their millions to Columbia and Chicago universities, in a way which would have astonished the solid men of Boston in the time of the Lawrences. George Peabody gave $1,000,000, Johns Hopkins $3,000,000, Stephen Girard $7,500,000. Harvard was a clergyman, and died at Charlestown, Massachusetts, in 1638. Yale was born at New Haven in 1648, but ten years afterward he was carried by his parents to England, in due time to acquire wealth in India, where he was governor of the East India company. Yale College dates from 1701. The present income of Yale is $800,000 per year. Originally located at Saybrook, Connecticut, it was removed to New Haven in 1716. Large gifts were also made by Asa Parker, founder of Lehigh university; Ario Pardee, of Lafayette college; Joseph C. Green, Princeton; Joseph E. Sheffield, Sheffield institute; Samuel Williston, of Amherst; also Ezra Cornell, Matthew Vassar, Henry F. Durant, Henry W. Sage, and W. H. Vanderbilt; Henry W. Towne, of Philadelphia; Amasa Stone and H. W. Case of Cleveland; George I. Seney of New York, and Nathaniel Thayer, of Boston. Otis, of Connecticut, gave $1,000,000 to heathen missionary work. Slater, of Connecticut, gave $1,000,000 to educate the colored people of the south. Rich gave $2,000,000 to Boston University for young men and women. Neither the great wealth expected, nor the millennium of morals religion intelligence and advancement aimed at has attended, as a rule, community of labor and property. The family of Shakers at Canterbury New Hampshire, consisting of 100 persons, constitute the town, with its cooking-house, school, workshops, library, printing-office, barn, and dwellings.
First of scientific institutions in New England is the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, begun in 1780 in Boston, having a good library but no scientific material. In Boston, likewise, is the Society of Natural History, and in New Haven the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, organized in 1799. In Salem is the Peabody Academy of Sciences elsewhere mentioned, organized in 1867, and having an endowment by George Peabody of $140,000. Among other New England scientific societies may be mentioned the Society of Natural History of Portland. Maine, incorporated in 1850, the museum at Amherst, and the Essex institute, later merged into the Essex County Natural History Society of Salem, incorporated in 1833. Both Harvard and Yale universities have scientific collections, the former a museum of comparative zoology and herbarium, the latter a Peabody museum and Marsh collection of vertebrate fossils. Amherst College, like many others, had its origin in a religious revival. It was at one time not an infrequent occurrence for a rich man to found an observatory or give a great telescope to a college. Of these Alvin Clark and his sons, of Boston, have made several, among the largest being those for the Lick observatory, 36-inch aperture; L. J. McCormick for University of Michigan, 26-inch; Naval observatory, Washington, D C, 26-inch; Princeton college, 23-inch; and Chicago observatory, 18 ½ inch.
Charles Tufts gave 100 acres of land to the college in Medford which bears his name, and later money was received through Silvanus Packard, William J. Warren, Oliver Dean, and others, aggregating $1,000,000. Wellesley college was founded by Henry F. Durant, who gave to it 300 acres of land and $1,000,000, M. H. Simpson. Valeria G. Stone, and George Smith have also given to the college. Durant, whose name originally was Smith, was a boy in Benjamin F. Butler's law office at Lowell. Changing his name he established himself in Boston, took his fees in some large rubber suits in stock, built railroads, and became rich.
New England has large values invested in banking, insurance, railways, and manufactures. As a whole the soil is not very productive, yet wealth abounds, and the land is full of happy homes. There are spots however like the Connecticut valley where good crops are raised and farming is profitable. Indian corn, buckwheat, oats, and tobacco are among the leading products. In Litchfield County are a score or so of iron foundries, with an invested capital of some $3,000,000. Connecticut leads the world in the manufacture of firearms and ammunition, though Massachusetts is not far behind. It may be for all we know that next to industries sustaining life, industries destructive to life are most beneficial to mankind; for were there no more war and no more death-dealing implements, what would be done with the surplus population? However this question be answered, New Haven is happy in having, besides Yale college, some 600 manufacturing establishments, chief among which are guns, hardware, clocks, carriages, and rubber goods. Wealthy London merchants settled here in 1638, and the place has been wealthy ever since. The Dutch built a fort where Hartford is in 1633, and it is now the center of large wealth and social culture. Formerly it shared the seat of government with New Haven, but in 1873 became sole state capital. Leaf tobacco, firearms, bicycles, and insurance are among its leading interests; there are many state, benevolent, and literary institutions. Connecticut also manufactures cotton, silk, and woolen goods, and has large fishing interests, particularly oysters at New Haven. Charles Goodyear, of New Haven, while struggling for eleven years to make India rubber of practical use, and laying the foundation of a great fortune, was once imprisoned for debt; once pawned his clothes to buy food, his children meanwhile gathering sticks for fire to melt the rubber. The spindle city, as Lowell is sometimes called, is great for its cotton manufactures, the water-power of Pawtucket falls being supplemented by steam power. There are also machine-shops and other factories here, as leather, chemicals, woodwork, and cartridges. Concord, the capital of New Hampshire, has a fine park, water and gas works, with statehouse, city hall, state prison, and insane asylum. Portland harbor is seldom closed by ice and so affords fine winter anchor age for the ocean vessels plying between Canada and Europe. The dry-dock is one of the largest in the United States. Portland exports, besides provisions and produce, lumber, copper ore, and cattle.
Prominent as merchants was the Derby family of Salem. Elias Hasket Derby. 1739-1799, son of Richard, and descendant of the Quaker immigrant Roger, losing his ships in the West India trade, in the war of independence, he and his neighbors fitted and sent out 158 privateers, mounting 2,000 cannon, and captured 445 British vessels. He built a superior kind of craft specially for the purpose, having speed; he advanced supplies to the government and helped in forming a navy; did much to restore commerce after the war; and was first to send a vessel to China, whence in 1790 he received 700,000 pounds of tea. Before he died he had 45 ships engaged in the East India trade. Rather than bring slaves from Africa, though the law allowed it, his ships having no other cargo would return in ballast. E. H. Derby, his son, continued the business, setting up the first broad-cloth loom, and bringing merino sheep from Spain. His son, grandson of the first Elias, was a lawyer and author, and assisted in the construction of iron-clad vessels during the civil war. A more distant member of the family was George H. Derby, soldier and humorist, author of Phoenixiana.
The Beecher family were truly great, with the best kind of greatness, the greatness of intellect and right living. No one knows what views Henry Ward Beecher really entertained regarding life, death, and eternity, but he talked well about them, and what he thought does not affect the facts. But beginning with Lyman Beecher, his Connecticut theology and school teaching and eighty-eight years of life, and coming to the son, the most powerful of pulpit orators, and his daughters, Catherine E. Beecher and Harriet E. Beecher-Stowe, whose Uncle Tom's Cabin outsold any work ever written except bibles and prayer books, mounting into the millions, not to mention other descendants of less note, and it was indeed a remarkable family. The Dana name is prominent in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Richard Dana, statesman and jurist, settled at Cambridge in 1640. Fourth in descent from him was still Judge Richard Dana, whose son, Francis Dana, chief justice, was born in 1743. R. H. Dana the elder, was a poet, born at Cambridge in 1787, and father of R. H. Dana Jr., also of Cambridge, a lawyer, and author of Two Year's Before the Mast. Of other families were James D. Dana, geologist, of Yale college, and Charles A. Dana, editor of the New York Sun. The Ames family is one of the most prominent and wealthy in Massachusetts. Oliver Ames was born at Easton in 1804. His sons, Oakes and F. L. Ames made shovels, and made them well, as have most of the family, either by hand or by machinery. Oakes Ames was one of the builders of the Union Pacific railway. He died in 1882, leaving his large manufacturing and other interests to his sons Oakes A. Oliver, and Frank M. Ames. Oliver Ames 2nd, born in 1831, spent some time in the shovel works of Oliver Ames and Sons, and afterward served seven years as lieutenant-governor and governor of the commonwealth. Frank M. Ames, two years younger than his brother Oliver, is principal owner of the Kinsley Iron and Machine Works at Canton and Lamson Consolidated Store Service company, besides having large railroad interests, and a plantation of 12,000 acres on the Mississippi river opposite New Orleans. He is also prominent in political and military affairs.
Alexander Agassiz, son of Louis Agassiz, the ichthyologist, after graduating at Harvard turned his attention first to coal mining in Pennsylvania and then to copper mining at Lake Superior, at which latter occupation he became quite wealthy, and gave it is said, some $230,000 to the Harvard museum. The Perrys of Newport are among the honored names of America.
Christopher R. Perry and five sons all served in the in United States navy, the father the revolutionary war. O. H. Perry in the war of 1812 on Lake Erie, and Matthew C. Perry in the Mexican war. Wendell Phillips was one of the greatest men of his day, great like Lincoln and Washington, like Juarez and Bolivar. He who will stand like a rock for humanity and principle, against the selfish interests and fanaticism of the people, against the howling mob, spending life fortune and the highest talents in the defense of the right, with no prospect of reward, but only because it is the right commands our highest admiration. John Phillips, father of Wendell was the first, mayor of Boston; and when the son saw William Lloyd Garrison dragged through the streets at the end of a rope for daring to express anti- slavery views, Wendell Phillips, the orator and philanthropist, was won to that cause forever.
Large fortunes have been made in inventions in sewing-machines. Among modern efforts those of Elias Howe in 1846 were among the first, the inventors following being John Bradshaw 1848, A. B. Wilson 1850, these of Massachusetts; and later I. M. Singer, W. O. Grover, Gibbs, and several others. Some of the inventors made little or nothing, others secured fortunes of one or two millions. Wm. E. Baker, of Grover and Baker, was a shrewd active business man who joined fortunes with Grover, an inventor. Mr. Baker's country seat near Boston was called Ridge Hill Farms, and the hospitality and entertainments which ruled there took the form somewhat of public benefactions. This same Elias Howe was a lame boy of Spencer, Massachusetts, born into poverty and toil, his father a miller; he worked for a small wage at various occupations until past twenty-one, and married; invented a double-pointed needle having the eye in the middle; but there were many years of penury and privation before the sewing-machine came into use and Howe found himself with an income of two or three hundred thousand dollars a year.
For so great an invention the returns to Charles Goodyear from his vulcanized India-rubber were poor indeed—only empty fame. Thomas Blanchard, of Suttin, finding slow and monotonous the task at which his father set him of heading tacks singly in a vise, set working his brain and invented, and in 1817 patented a machine for cutting and heading tacks, which patent he sold for $5,000. This was followed by twenty other inventions and patents, among which were several for lathes for turning gun stocks and barrels, light-draught steamboat cloth shearing, and a machine for bending timber. There are single factories in the United States which make and ship as many clocks every week as any factory in Europe makes in a year, that is to say 10,000. Nearly all of these great factories are in Connecticut; there is one in Boston and one in Brooklyn, New York.
Among the great works of men in America are tunnels which pierce mountains and ferret under the beds of navigable streams for mining purposes. Among these are the Hoosac tunnel through the Green mountains of Massachusetts, first conceived for the use of a canal to connect Boston with the Hudson river, but made in fact the cost for the railway, the cost to the state, with interest, amounting to about $20,000,000, In Washington, a tunnel was opened through the Cascade mountains in 1888; in California there is the Big Bend tunnel in Butte county, and in Nevada, the Sutro tunnel at Virginia city. Under the Chicago River have been run several tunnels; and under the St. Clair, at Port Huron; and either executed or projected, under the river Niagara, and the Harlem. East and North rivers New York City and numbers of others.
Harvey D. Parker, of the Parker house was first waiter in a small Court street restaurant, then restaurant keeper, then hotel keeper and millionaire. Isaac Rich, a Cape Cod boy, peddled his fish and oysters about the streets of Boston for many years, until one day Boyden, of the Tremont house, loaned him $600 to buy a cargo of salmon. In this transaction the foundation of his fortune was laid. He gave during his life half a million to charity, and left a million and a half to be distributed after his death. Samuel Colt saw somewhere an old weapon which gave him the idea of a revolver, and he set up a factory just at the time when California gold-seekers were taken with the fancy that unless they carried a gun their life was in danger; the result was a million or two for Colt. Joshua Sears was a grocer and trader on Long Wharf, Boston, and amassed a fortune estimated at eleven millions before the great fire. The estate was left to an infant son, under the management of Alpheus Hardy at a salary of $25,000 a year with commissions on income, which revenue he received for 21 years. Alvin Adams came from Vermont to Boston a poor boy, and was long without money and without friends. Finally he was able to buy a season ticket between New York and Boston, and by long and arduous personal application he succeeded in founding on a firm basis the Adams Express company. Alexander G. Bell, inventor of the Bell telephone, was born in Scotland, went to Canada, and thence to Philadelphia, where he first exhibited the invention which made him wealthy in 1876.
A. G. Hazard, who became wealthy in the manufacture of gunpowder, belonged to Rhode Island, and was a relative of D. H. Parry, but his permanent works were at Hazardville, Connecticut. David Hoadley, prominent as president of the Panama railway, was once a druggist in New Haven. This famous railroad, 47 miles in length, costing so many lives and so much money, paid for itself in ten years; many thousand passengers at $25 each and $800,000,000 in specie were conveyed across the Isthmus prior to 1870. James E. English, of Connecticut, worked his way up from humble beginnings to a proud position of wealth and benevolence. William B. Bement was another successful Connecticut man, who later removed to Philadelphia. Charles Morgan, native of New England, and founder of the Morgan Iron Works and the Morgan line of steamers, came of Welsh stock, being of the seventh generation in descent from James Morgan, who came from Wales to Boston in 1636. William M. Evarts was born in Boston, though he practiced law in New York. George F. Hoar, United States senator from Massachusetts, must ever be regarded as one of the foremost men this nation has ever produced. Levi P. Morton, no less prominent in politics than in Wall Street, genius and wealth here uniting, was born in Vermont, and for a time was a merchant in Boston. Benjamin J. Berry took an active interest in the incorporation of the Cape Cod ship canal, the cost of which was estimated at some $8,000,000. J. B. Hoyt of Stamford, Connecticut, left an estate of $6,000,000. E. D. Boylston, of Amherst, after a life of benevolence died leaving $1,000,000. These, and others to be mentioned, are among New England's greatest and most successful men, for what is greatness but success; greatness for good or evil, success for weal or woe? And how men achieve success and become great, who can tell? Surely not the great ones themselves, who least of all comprehend by what many and devious ways they have reached the goal. Ask them, and one will say perseverance and an iron will, which his enemy will call perhaps stupidity and obduracy. Another will speak of application, economy, honesty, or other noble quality, when all the while, unknown to himself be has been building his fortune by meanness and luck. Thinking well of ourselves, naturally we apply to ourselves the best sounding terms.
Among those prominent in the history of New England, and born there, are:—Maine, Jacob Barker, Swan Island, 1779-1871, economist and ship owner; James Brooks, Portland, 1810-1873, journalist; George B. Cheever, Hallowell, 1807, clergyman and author; George S. Hillard, Mechine, 1808, author; Rufus King, Scarborough, 1755-1827, statesman; Henry W. Longfellow, Portland, 1807, poet; Edward Preble, Falmouth Neck, 1761-1807, naval officer; N. P. Willis, Portland, 1806-1867, author. New Hampshire, Nathan Appleton, New Ipswich, 1799-1861, Boston merchant and cotton manufacturer; Samuel Appleton, New Ipswich, 1766- 1853, Boston merchant and philanthropist, gave $1,000,000 to education; Edmund M. Blunt, Portsmouth, 1770-1862, hydrographer; Benjamin F. Butler, Deerfield, 1818, general; Lewis P Cass, Exeter, 1782-1866, statesman and general; Salmon P. Chase, Cornish, 1808-1873, statesman; James Freeman Clarke, Hanover, 1810, clergyman; Charles A. Dana, Hinsdale, 1819-1897, journalist; Henry Dearborn, Hampton, 1751-1829, general; John A. Dix, Boscawen, 1798, politician and general; Samuel G. Drake, Pittsfield, 1798, author; William P. Fessenden, Boscawen, 1800-1869, statesman; John P. Hale, Rochester, 1806-1873, statesman; Charles Francis Hall, Rochester, 1821-1871, arctic explorer; Franklin Pierce, Hillsborough, 1804-1869, president of the United States; Daniel Webster, Salisbury, 1782-1852, statesman; the Wentworths, John and Benning, 1671, etc, statesmen and patriots; Joseph E. Worcester, Bedford, 1784-1865, lexicographer; Noah Worcester, Hollis, 1758-1837, clergyman, author, and fifer at Bunker Hill; T. B. Aldrich, Portsmouth, 1837, poet; Horace Greeley, Amherst, 1811, journalist, founder of the New York Tribune. Vermont, Stephen A. Douglas, Brandon, 1813-1861, statesman; Rufus W. Griswold, Benson, 1815-1857, author; Augustus A. Hayes, Windsor, 1806, chemist; Ethan Allen Hitchcock, Vergennes, 1798- 1870, author; Hiram Powers, Woodstock, 1805-1873, sculptor; Asahel C. Kendrick, Poultney, 1809, author; John G. Saxe, Highgate, 1816, poet; John Todd, Rutland, 1800-1873, clergyman and author; Horace Wells, Hartford, 1815-1848, dentist, discoverer of anaesthesis; Brigham Young, Whittingham, 1801, Mormon leader; Joseph Smith, Sharon, 1805-1844, Mormon prophet; Chester A. Arthur, Fairfield, 1830-1886, president of the United States; George F. Edmunds, Richmond, 1828, lawyer and senator. Massachusetts, Samuel Abbott, Andover, 1732-1812, Boston merchant, founder of Andover Theological Seminary; Charles Francis Adams, Boston, 1807, statesman; John Adams, Braintree, 1735-1826, president of the United States; John Quincy Adams, Braintree, 1767-1848, president of the United States; Samuel Adams, Boston, 1722-1803, statesman; Daniel Appleton, Haverhill, 1785-1849, New York publisher; George Bancroft, Worcester, 1800-1891, historian; E. B. Bigelow, West Boylston, 1814-1879, inventor of power loom; Jacob Bigelow, Sudbury, 1787, physician and writer; Amos Binney, Boston, 1803-1847, savant; George S. Boutwell, Brookline, 1818, statesman; Nathaniel Bowditch, Salem, 1773-1838; James Bowdoin, Boston, 1727-1790, governor, gave name to Bowdoin College; Zabdiel Boylston, Brookline, 1680-1766,physician; William Cullen Bryant, Cummington, 1794, poet; Rufus Choate, Essex, 1799-1859, lawyer; Jos. G. Cogswell, Ipswich, 1786-1871, scholar; Caleb Cushing, Salisbury, 1800, jurist; Francis Dana, Charlestown, 1743-1811, jurist; Timothy Dwight, Northampton, 1752-1817, clergyman and scholar; Ralph Waldo Emerson, Boston, 1803, essayist; William M. Evarts, Boston, 1818, lawyer; Edward Everett Dorchester, 1794-1865, statesman and orator; Eli Whitney Westborough, 1765-1825, inventor of the cotton-gin; Thomas Blanchard, Sutton, 1788-1864, inventor; John Lowell, jurist, 1743, Francis Cabot Lowell, merchant, 1775, Newburyport; John Lowell, Boston, 1799-1836, founder of Lowell institute; James Russell Lowell, Cambridge, 1819, poet; Horace Mann, Franklin, 1796-1859, educationist; William L. Marcy, Stockbridge, 1786-1857, statesman; William T. G. Morton, Charlton, 1819-1868, dentist; Samuel F. B. Morse, Charlestown, 1791-1872, telegraph inventor; George Peabody Danvers, 1795-1869, merchant; Theophilus Parsons, father and son jurists; Wendell Phillips, Boston, 1811, orator; Timothy Pickering, Salem, 1745-1829, statesman; Theodore Parker, Lexington, 1810-1860, orator and abolitionist; Francis Parkman, Boston, 1823, author; Edgar Allen Poe, Boston, 1809-1849, poet; David Porter, Boston, 1780-1843, naval officer; William H. Prescott, Salem, 1796-1859, historian; Israel Putnam, Salem, 1718-1890, general; Josiah Quincy, Boston, 1772-1864, statesman; R. H. Stoddard, Hingham, 1825, author; Joseph Story, Marblehead, 1799-1845, jurist; Edward Bellamy, Chicopee Falls, 1850, author; Cyrus W. Field, Stockbridge, merchant; Austin Flint, Petersham, 1812, physician; Benja min Franklin, Boston, 1706-1790, philosopher and statesman; William Lloyd Garrison, Newburyport, 1804, abolitionist; Edward Everett Hale, Boston, 1822, clergyman and author; John Hancock, Quincy, 1737-1793, statesman; Nathaniel Hawthorne, Salem, 1804-1864, author; Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Cambridge, 1823, author; Edward Hitchcock, Deerfield, 1793-1864, geologist; Oliver Wendell Holmes, Cambridge, 1809, author; Joseph Hooker, Hadley, 1815, general; Harriet G. Hosmer, Watertown, 1830, sculptor; Elias Howe Spencer, 1819-1867, sewing-machine inventor; Thomas Hutchinson, Boston, 1711-1780, governor; Charles T. Jackson, Plymouth, 1805, physicist; Amos and Abbott Lawrence, Groton, 1786, etc, merchants and philanthropists; Benjamin Lincoln, general, Levi Lincoln, statesman, Hingham, 1733, etc; Benjamin Wade, Springfield, 1800-1878, statesman; Charles Sumner, Boston, 1811-1874, statesman; George Ticknor, Boston, 1791-1871, author; Charles Dudley Warner, Plainfield, 1829, author; James Warren, Plymouth, Joseph Warren, Roxbury, 1726 etc, patriots; Elkanah Watson, Plymouth, 1758-1842, merchant; E. P. Whipple, Gloucester, 1819, author and Haverhill, lecturer; John G. Whittier, 1807, poet; John and Samuel Phillips, Andover, 1719 etc, founded Exeter and Andover academies; Aphraim Williams, Newton, 1715-1755, soldier and founder of Williams college; Winthrop, John and Robert C., Boston, 1714 etc, descendants of John Winthrop; Silas Wright, Amherst, 1795-1847, statesman, abolitionist, and governor of New York. Rhode Island, William E. Channing, Newport, 1780-1842, clergyman and author; George W. Curtis, Providence, 1824, author; Nathaniel Greene, Potowhommet, 1742-1786, general; O. H. Perry, Newport, 1785-1819, commodore. Connecticut, Ethan Allen, Litchfield, 1739-1789, general; Benedict Arnold, Norwich, 1740-1801, general and traitor; Amos B. Alcott, Waterbury, 1799-1888, philosopher; Lyman Beecher, New Haven, 1775-1863, clergyman; Henry Ward Beecher, Litchfield, 1813-1887, pulpit orator; Harriet E . Beecher-Stowe, Litchfield, 1812, author; John Brown, Torrington, 1800-1859, abolitionist; Elihu Burritt, New Britain, 1810 scholar; Isaac Chauncey, Black Rock, 1772-1840, naval officer; Nathaniel Chipman, Salisbury, 1752-1843, jurist; Manesseh Cutler, Killingly, 1742-1823, scientist: Jonathan Edwards, East Windsor, 1703-1758, clergyman and metaphysician, David Dudley Field, Haddam, 1805, and Stephen J. Field, 1816, jurists; John Fitch, Windsor, 1743-1798, inventor and pioneer in steam navigation; Nathan Hale, Coventry, 1755-1776, soldier; Fitz-Greene Halleck, Guilford, 1790-1867, poet; Isaac Hull, Derby, 1775-1873, naval officer; Thos. S. Hunt, Norwich, 1826, chemist and mineralogist; Charles Morris, 1784-1856, naval officer; John Ledyard, Groton, 1751-1787, traveler; Frederick Law Olmsted, Hartford 1822, landscape gardener; Peter B. Porter, Salisbury, 1773-1844, general; Theodore Sedgwick, statesman, Hartford, 1746-1818, and John Sedgwick, general, Cornwall, 1813-1864; Jonathan Trumbull, Lebanon, 1710-1785, revolutionist, and whence “Brother Jonathan;" Noah Webster Hartford, 1758-1843, lexicographer; Eleazar Wheelock, Windham, 1711-1779, clergyman and founder of Dartmouth college; Elihu Yale, New Haven, 1648-1721, founder of Yale college; P. T. Barnum, Bethel, 1810-1891, showman; Charles Goodyear, New Haven 1800-1860, inventor of vulcanized India-rubber; Morrison R. Waite, Lyme, 1816-1888, chief justice.
I give herewith some of the wealthy men of Boston of a half century or more ago, as, John Quincy Adams, whose fortune was rated at $400,000; Benjamin Adams, $200,000; Cyrus Alger, iron founder and land owner, $200,000; Charles Amory, $200,000: James Amory, $200,000; Eben T. Andrews, merchant, $350,000; Samuel Appleton, dry goods, $1,000,000; Nathan and William Appleton, each $1,000,000; Samuel T. Armstrong, seller of Scott's Bible, $200,000; Benjamin Atkins, crockery, $150,000; Samuel Austin Jr., $250,000; James T. Austin, lawyer; Eliphalet Baker, dry goods, $150,000; John Ballard, carpets, $200,000; Joseph Ballard, $150,000; John D. Bates, $150,000; John Belknap, merchant, $200,000; Amos Binney, grocer, $300,000; John Borland, $200,000; Ezra A. Bourne, $150,000; Abner H. Bowman, distiller, $150,000; Josiah Bradlee, $300,000; John W. Bradlee, wine, $300,000; Martin Brimmer, $250,000; Peter C. Brooks, insurance and real estate, then the wealthiest man in New England. $4,000,000; Edward Brooks son of above, and before his father’s death, $200,000; Peter C. Brooks Jr., merchant, $200,000; John Bryant, firm Bryant and Sturgis, Northwest Coast shipping, $1,000,000; John Bryant Jr., $150,000; Benjamin Burgen, $150,000; George Burroughs, bank cashier, $150,000; Samuel Cabot, merchant, $300,000; Andrew Carney, clothing, $200,000; Ebenezer Chadwick, $150,000; Jonas Chickering, pianos, $200,000; Charles R. and John Codinan, merchants, each $300,000; Henry Codman, $500,000; Joseph Coolidge, goldsmith, $200,000; Thomas Cordis, $150,000; Benjamin W. Crowninshield, privateering war 1812, $500,000; Edward Cruft, $250,000; John P. Cushing, China trade, $2,000,000; Richard C. Derby, $150,000; John Dorr, merchant, $150,000; Edmund Dwight, $600,000; David Eckley, $250,000; Samuel A. Eliot, $300,000; Samuel Fales, $200,000; Nathaniel Faxon, boots and shoes, $150,000; William Foster $200,000; Ebenezer Francis, merchant, $700,000; Robert, John M., and Robert B. Forbes, China trade, each $200,000; John L. Gardner, married a daughter of Joseph Peabody, $500,000; Henry Gardner, $250,000; Henry Gassett, dry goods, $200,000; Addison Gilmore, from handcart to railroad, $150,000; Nathaniel Goddard, merchant, $300,000; Moses Grant, paper, $150,000; John C., Francis C., and Horace Gray, iron works, $300,000 or $400,000; Copeley, and other Greenes, heirs of Gardner Greene, cotton raiser in Demarara, $3,000,000; John Hancock, inherited from his uncle John Hancock, president of congress and governor of Massachusetts, $300,000; Franklin Haven, bank cashier, $150,000; David Henshaw, druggist, $200,000; Fitzhenry Homer, $150,000; George Howe, merchant, $200,000; Jabez C. Howe, dry goods, $150,000; Benjamin Humphrey, grocer, $250,000; Henderson Inches, merchant, $200,000; Charles Jackson, judge, $150,000; James Johnson, merchant, $300,000; Thomas Lamb, insurance, $150,000; Abbott Lawrence, dry goods, $2,000,000; Amos and William Lawrence, each $1,000,000; Giles Lodge, merchant, $200,000; Elijah Loring, wharfinger, $300,000; Benjamin Loring, stationer, $200,000; Joseph Lovering, $200,000; Charles Lowell, clergyman, $150,000; John A. Lowell. $300,000; George W. Lyman, $300,000; Theodore Lyman, $150,000; William P. Mason, lawyer, $150,000; Samuel May, metals, $500,000; George May, $300,000; David C. Moseley, saddler, $150,000; George Odin, hardware, $200,000; Harrison May Otis, lawyer, $800,000; Peter, James, and Charles Parker, heirs of John Parker, each $700,000; Daniel P. Parker, $200,000; Francis Parkman, clergyman, $200,000; William Parsons, banker, $150,000; Thomas Perkins Jr., China trade, $300,000; Jonathan Phillips, $800,000; Edward B. Phillips, $300,000; William Pratt, merchant, $800,000; Josiah Quincy, $300,000; Josiah Quincy Jr., $400,000; Ruben Richards, metals, $150,000; Jeffrey Richardson, iron, $150,000; Edward H. Robbins, doctor, 5200.000; Nathaniel P. Russell, insurance, $250,000; Samuel Salisbury, $150,000; Samuel Sanford, merchant, $300,000; L. M. Sargent, $150,000; Ignatus Sargent, banker, $300,000; James Savage, lawyer, $150,000; William Savage, physician, $250,000; M. P. Sawyer, $200,000; David Sears, $1,500,000; George C. Shattuck, physician. $500,000; Robert G. Shaw, merchant, $1,000,000; Benjamin Shurtleff, physician, Illinois lands, $200,000; Henry Sigburney, merchant, $400,000; Francis Skinner, merchant, $300,000; Ebenezer Smith, land, $200,000; John Steams, $150,000; Josiah Sudman, merchant, $150,000; W. W. Stone, manufacturer, $200,000; Samuel Swett, $150,000; John Tappan, $200,000; John Templeton, marble, $150,000; John A. Thayer, broker, $300,000; Thomas Thompson, $300,000; Augustus Thorndike, $500,000; John P. Thorndike, builder, $150,000; George Ticknor, $200,000; Joseph Tilden, merchant, $150,000; Mace Tisdale, leather, $150,000; Samuel Torrey, merchant, $150,000; Samuel Wain, $150,000; Enoch, shipping, $150,000: Ezra Trull, distiller, $150,000; John W. Trull, distiller, $250,000; Frederic Tudor, exporter of ice, $150,000; Phineas Upham, $500,000; Josiah Vose, $150,000; Thomas B. Wales, merchant, $400,000; Thomas W. Ward, banking, $300,000; Artemus Ward, lawyer, $200,000; John C. Warren, surgeon, $300,000; Robert Waterston, $150,000; Benjamin Welles, $300,000; John Welles, $700,000; Ezra Weston, merchant, $300,000; William S. White, $150,000; Joseph Whitney, leather, $150,000: Thomas Wigglesworth, merchant, $600,000; John D. Williams, wine, $1,000,000; Moses Williams, $500,000; Benjamin Willis, $150,000: William P. Winchester, provisions, $500,000; Robert Winthrop, $200,000.
There were quite a number of men in Boston from 1845 to 1850 said to be worth $100,000, among them Charles Frederick Adams, merchant; John R. Adan, lawyer; John Albree merchant; Andrew J. Allen, William Amory, John F. Apthorp, banker; Thomas G. Atkins, dry goods; Edward Austin, merchant; Walter Baker, chocolate manufacturer; Aaron Baldwin, banker; Aaron Bancroft; George Bancroft; Benjamin Bangs, merchant; Sidney Bartlett, lawyer; John M. Barnard, distiller; Thomas Bartlett, druggist; Joseph Bell, lawyer; Alpheus Bigelow; Jacob Bigelow, physician; Charles Blake; Edward Blanchard; Noah Blanchard leather dealer; William H. Boardman, merchant; Nathaniel I. Bowditch; Samuel Bradlee, hardware; Gardner Brewer, distiller; John Bumstead; Thomas O . H. P. Burnham, second hand books; Thomas Cains, glass manufacturer; Nathan Carruth, druggist; George B. Gary; Henry Chapman, ship chandler; Jonathan Chapman, lawyer; Theodore Chase, merchant; James Cheever, leather dealer; Benjamin C. Clark commission merchant; Josiah P. Cooke, lawyer; Joseph Cotton, chain cable manufacturer; Thomas Crehose; Uriel Crocker, religious bookseller; George W. Crockett; Andrew Cunningham merchant; Charles Cunningham; Charles P. Curtis, lawyer; Thomas B. Curtis; Pliny Cutler, grocer; Peter R. Dalton, merchant; John Davis; Samuel Davis; James Davis; Daniel Denny, banker; E. H. Derby, lawyer; Franklin Dexter, lawyer; Thomas Dixon, merchant; Tisdale Drake, wood and lime; Daniel Draper, merchant; John Earle Jr., tailor; J. W. Edmunds, merchant; Henry Edwards; Stephen Fairbanks, hardware; Robert Farley, merchant; Augustus H. Fiske, lawyer; Benjamin Fiske; Samuel Frothingham banker; Richard Fletcher, lawyer; James H. Foster, paper hangings; William H . Gardiner, lawyer; Benjamin I. Gilbert; Timothy Gilbert, piano manufacturer; Pevez Gill, lumber; Jonathan Goddard; Benjamin Gorham, lawyer; Francis A. Gray, merchant; Benjamin D. Greene, doctor; W. P. Greenwood, dentist; John Gore; Jacob Hall distiller; Henry Hall; Andrew T. Hall, crockery; Daniel Hammond; Ralph Haskins. distiller; Prince Hawes, commission merchant; John Henshaw, druggist; Charles Henshaw, chemist; David Hill, grocer; George Hill, dry goods; H. M. Holbrook, dry goods; Peter T. Hosmer, dry goods; George J. Hosmer, hardware; Robert Hooper, banker; Samuel Hooper; John Hooper, stationer; James Ingersoll, merchant; James Jackson, physician; Denting Jarvis, glass; Samuel Johnson; Josiah M. Jones; Joseph G. Joy; Nabby Joy; David Kimball; Jesse Kingsbury; George H. Kuhn, merchant; Charles F. Kupfer, hardware, John Lamson, dry goods; Charles C. Little, publisher; Sargent S. Littlehale, merchant; Melvin Lord, bookseller; Caleb Loring, merchant; Charles G. Loring, lawyer; Henry Loring; John F. Loring; Francis C. Lowell, life insurance; Charles Lyman; W . H. Mackay; R. C. Mackay; Philip Marett, banker; Jeremiah Mason, lawyer; William Minot, lawyer; George Morey, lawyer; Lawrence Nichols, confectioner; Benjamin R. Nichols, lawyer; W. J. Miles, stable keeper; Joseph Noble, commission merchant; Henry J. Oliver; Simeon Palmer, tailor; James W. Paige, merchant; Elisha Parks, dry goods; Samuel D. Parker, lawyer; Theophilus Parsons, lawyer; Enoch Patterson; John H. Pearson, merchant; Abel G. Pack, dry goods; Silas Pierce, grocer; Payson Perrin; Abel Phelps, liquors; Solomon Piper; George W. Pratt, stock broker; George Pratt, merchant; William H. Prescott; Benjamin T. Reed, railroads; Joseph W. Revere, coppersmith; James B. Richardson; Henry B. Rogers, lawyer; George C. Shattuck Jr., doctor; Lemuel Shaw, judge; Samuel A. Shurlleff, physician; John Simmons, clothing; Henry B. Smith, lawyer; William D. Sohier, lawyer; Phineas Sprague, merchant; Henry B . Stone, banker; Daniel P. Stone, dry goods; W. W. Story, lawyer; George C. Thatcher, iron; Adam W. Thatcher, insurance; George W. Thayer, banker; Joel Thayer, merchant; Samuel Tyler, commission merchant; Elijah Vose, hardware.
The real estate of Massachusetts is valued at $2,000,000,000. Among the more wealthy of Boston in the year 1900 may be suggested, Charles F. Adams, Alexander Agassiz, William H. Allen, Oliver Ames, John R. Alley, Frank W. Andrews, A. F. Arnold, M. E. Atherton, E. Atkins, Edward Austin. D. P. Babson, W. B. Bacon, J. S. Bailey, C. A. Baker, E. M. Baker, W. H. Baker, F. V. Balch, E. A. Bangs, Francis Bartlett, John D. Bates, James H. Beal, M. E. Bean, J. M. Beebe, J. H. Benton Jr., E. M. Bigelow, George N. Black, M. C. Blake, Charles P. Bowditch, R. B. Brigham, P. C. Brooks, J R. Brackett, John T. Bradlee, A. T. Brown, L. G. Burnham, E. R. Cabot, John Carter, E. M. Chick, C. F. Choate, R. Codman, James Collins, E. S. Converse, C . W. Cutting, L. M. Crabtree. C. P. Curtis, N. Gushing, G. A. Dary, John J. Day, D. L. Demmon, W. S. Dexter, C. H. Dill, G . F. Fabyan, A. S. Faulkner, S. S. Fay, Frank Ferdinand, G. S. Fiske, C. P. Flagg, J. M. Forbes, D. S. Ford, J. Foster, A. F. Freeman, Jonathan French, C. E. Frothingham, C. W. Galloup, G. A. Gardiner, W. A. Gaston, Albert Geiger, J. P. Glover, John Goldthwait, Daniel Goodnow, David S. Greenough, David Greer, J N. Grew, John C. Haynes, J. H. Hecht, G. A. Hibbard, F. L. Higginson, W. H. Hill, S. B. Hinckley. C. F. Hovey, George D. Howe, H. H. Hunnewell, E. W. Hutchins, Samuel Johnson, E . D. Jordan, D. P. Kimball, Franklin King, B. Lancy, A. A. Lawrence, J. L. Little Jr., Henry Lee, A. P. Lawring, J. A. Lowell, Joshua Lovett, F. Lyman.