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Welcome to our news and history blog!

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Their Golden Wedding: Mr. and Mrs. I.L. Mead Receive Congratulations (1905)


Source: Greenwich Graphic: December 2, 1905, Page 5.

Mr. and Mrs. I. L. Mead Receive Congratulations-Talks with Graphic About the Greenwich of 50 Years Ago. 

Mr. and Mrs. Isaac Lewis Mead held an informal reception at their home last Monday in observance of the fiftieth anniversary of their wedding. During the day more than a hundred persons paid their respects to the couple. Besides these Lombard Post G. A. R. called in a body, the deacons of the Congregational Church and the school visitors, as well as representatives of Acacia Lodge A. and F. M. 

Many pretty presents were received by the pair. Among them were a gold Grand Army badge presented by Lombard Post, a gold lined silver fruit dish presented by the visitors and a  gold masonic emblem for Mr. Mead and a gold brooch for Mrs. Mead presented by Acacia Lodge.

The Isaac Lewis Mead Building, Greenwich and West Putnam Avenues. 

Mr. Mead is a native of Greenwich, there can hardly be found a man who has for so many years kept in such close touch with the town. His naturally fine intellect has preserved all its keeness and his physical faculties have not been impaired by age with exception of his eyesight which he has almost entirely lost.

"There has been a great change in Greenwich since 50 years ago to-day," said he reminiscently to the GRAPHIC. "At the time I was married it was but a little village which had but little intercourse with the outside world. The railroad
had been put through but a short time and a trip to New York was infrequent indeed to the average Greenwichite. 

"I think at that time there were but six houses on what is now Greenwich Avenue. The avenue was a mere road from the Post Road down to what is now the Steamboat dock. There were no sidewalks and the road was often in such a condition that it was necessary to walk out into the lots to get out of the mud. The road was considerably used used even before the railroad was put in, in going from the upper part of the town to Captain Caleb Merritt's sloop wharf.

"This sloop of Captain Merritt's plied between here and New York and was for a great many years a much used mode of transportation, not only of freight but of passengers. The sloop ran once a week. It started in the evening and if the weather was good generally arrived in New York somewhere near dawn.

"The business section of the town for the most part was near the corner of Sherwood Place and Putnam avenue though there were one or two stores adjacent to the building which is now called the Lenox House. The hotel was called the Mansion Hotel and was kept by Mr. Augustus Lyon. It was the only hostelry in this part of the town.

"There were no public improvements in town then, if you accept the roads. There were not even lights. I remember the first time lights were put on Greenwich avenue. I think it was just prior to the war, when the 8th regiment of the militia was camping on Mr. Sandford Mead's lot. I was then a member of the Board of Burgesses and I realized that there would be a great many people passing between the railroad and the camp ground and that there ought to be lights on Greenwich avenue. At that time the Americas Club had a club house on Indian Harbor Point where Mr. Benedict's place is now. They used a great many lamps to light the woods up when they held an entertainment of any sort. I went to the club as it was about time for it to close for the year, asked for the use of the lamps. When I got them I had them fixed to the trees all along Greenwich avenue. Those were the first lights on the avenue, but it was a long time before any were permanently places there.

"Practically no one outside knew of the town, then, as a summer resort. One of the first people to make a summer home here was William L. Tweed. It was he who brought the Americus Club out here and it was the Americus Club which through its members helped spread the fame of Greenwich as a beautiful summer place.

"Then of course other people traveling through the town on the railroad noted its beauties and came here to try them. There was a rather amusing story told of the late Mr. H. M. Benedict, brother of Mr. E.C. Benedict whose elegant villa here is one of the most magnificent in the country. For some reason or other Mr. Benedict had come to town and he visited the cemetery. Going through it and reading the various inscriptions, he remarked that there were an almost amazing number of persons who had died in the ages of eighty or ninety or even older. "Ha," he said with a smile, "if the place is so healthful that they all live to be eighty or more, its just the place for me." Somewhat later he came to live here, whether partly because of the incident or not, I don't know. Seven years ago he died at an age that was not less than those he had marveled at, graven in the old cemetery." 

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Union Cemetery: Year 2020 Preservation and Restoration

Located off Milbank Avenue at the intersection with Davis Avenue, Union Cemetery was originally called Burying Hill, and it was an old Mead family plot. 

One hundred and sixty-nine years ago on the 2nd day of November, 1851, Robert W. Mead deeded three adjoining acres of land he owned on the south and and east side of that cemetery. Since then, Union Cemetery has been under the management and control of the Second Congregational Church of Greenwich. 

Starting May 2, the church initiated a project to clean up, spruce up and restore Union Cemetery. 

The cemetery includes a number of Mead family plots representing various branches of the family. 

This is from Spencer P. Mead's record of tombstones in the Town of Greenwich dated October, 1908:

This cemetery was originally called BURYING HILL, and it was an old family plot. On the second day of November, 1851, Robert W. Mead, the owner of the adjoining land on the east and south of the old plot, deeded to the Second Congregational Society (now the Second Congregational Church) three acres of land, in trust nevertheless, as a burial ground and for no other purpose, to be under the charge and superintendence of a committee of three persons to be appointed by said society from among those of its members who are of the church.

Union Cemetery is quite popular with local residents, including a fair share of walkers. 

The gate to Elkanah Mead's graves site. He is the founder of the 
insurance company that bears his name. 

This image was captured in the first week of May, 2020. The cemetery features fine examples of tall specimen trees and flowering bushes, such as the azaleas pictured here. 

This image was captured in first week of November, 2020. It shows the area of the cemetery near the intersection of Milbank and Lincoln avenues at the traffic light. 

This image was captured in first week of November, 2020. It shows the area of the cemetery near the intersection of Milbank and Lincoln avenues at the traffic light. 

This is the scene in Union Cemetery on the north end closest to Davis Avenue facing south. Note the vivid red colors of the Japanese maple trees. This was captured in the first week of November, 2020. 

This is the gravestone of Hannah Mead. The stone lay buried under four inches of soil and sod for many years. Eventually it will be uprighted again. 

The Second Congregational Church of Greenwich, Connecticut -founded in 1705. The cemetery in the foreground is not Union Cemetery. It is known as the New Burial Grounds Association Cemetery, one of the first independent cemetery associations in Greenwich. 

Friday, November 13, 2020



Suggestions to Voters: Mr. George H. Mills and Mr. Solomon S. Mead Have Something to Say on the Coming Election (1900)

Source: The Greenwich Graphic

Saturday, November 3, 1900, Page 1. 

(Only Solomon S. Mead's Comments Featured Here) 


Editor of the Graphic:

Dear Sir- With your permission I would like to say a few words to your readers. Election for President is fast approaching and it is well for us to stop and consider the position in which we are placed. We have had a remarkable administration for the past four years. There has been a great boom in labor-a very great demand for every kind and at the very best prices; insomuch that people could not bear prosperity, but like a full-fed, vicious horse, they have balked and kicked at their prosperity. Unions have been formed and endorsed by the masses.  Strikes have sprung up where there was  no cause for complaint; and I feel that capital was somewhat to blame. When my men said they would not work with non-union men, I told them to get, and I had no difficulty in getting my work done. No longer than yesterday I had an application from the plumbing house of Charles Sherwood of White Plains to d my work and work with union and non-union men. That is all right; but if I was a contractor, or wanted to have wok done, do you suppose I would stand and consider for one second any such proposition was made by a local tinner last summer? I said that I did not want a man of that character for one cent per day. We used to get good honest to do all our work, and work ten hours each da, for good, suitable wages; now men say, "I will only loaf around on your place eight hours and I must have the highest wages-say for three or four dollars per day- and the longer the job can be made to last, the more money there is in it for me."

Now this has all come about in the administration of McKinley. Now who ought to complain-capital or labor? My experience teaches me that very few know when they are well off, and as soon as a person finds his services are useful he makes a sudden bolt for liberty, to lose his job and look for another.

Now I am very willing to divide with labor and give labor a full half of the income, but I am not willing to give all the profit and the principal in the bargain, and that is why I protest against unions, as they now are, and strikers. Every man is at liberty to leave my employ at any time, but I deny his right to tell me who I shall employ or how I shall spend my money.

Where we have plenty of prosperity now, but a short while ago, in another administration, we had soup houses and no work.

I think I have said enough to give you my opinion of this wort of work. I think that every man has a right to his opinion honestly and justly formed, and as soon as I discover a person has no respect for my opinion I have less for his, and all he can say would make no more impression on me than pouring water over the back of a duck. I would have no regard for him of his opinion.

Now, Mr. Editor, will you allow me to ask you a question or two: What has become of the great "hullabaloo" we heard about during that hot day, July 18th? Now I feel interested in the "hullabaloo" as I voted directly for the officers who are charged with that complaint with a shortage of town funds. I will not call it rascality, for I may be wrong. These men were licensed by the town to give or take as they pleased. I blame the town and its counsel more than the officers. My experience has been that no man can be trusted. I find it so in very day's business transactions with my fellow-men, and more with lawyers than any other class of men, because they are educated how ti get evidence, matters and things.

When I undertook to get justice in the courts of White Plains, I told the sheriff and officers in White Plains court house that if I wanted justice, I would sooner go to h--l for it than to come over there among them.

I remember that a highly-esteemed minister of Brooklyn, Henry Ward Beecher, once said- "The most unjust thing in God's earth is justice," and I fully agree with him.

Now I voted for each and all of these men, with full confidence that they were good ones-true to their trust. Now it is the duty of the town not to consent to anything dishonest, but to make a full investigation and find where and who is wrong in this mater and let it be settled as it should be.

I thank my fellow-townsmen, George H. Mills, A.A. Marks, Luke Lockwood, and all others, not forgetting E.C. Benedict, for the interest they have taken in having the frauds of Greenwich town fully investigated. 

A god any years ago there was a Judge Morris, who was the founder of Morrissania. He was a judge of the courts sitting alternately at Bedford ad White Plains. At North Castle, close to the corner of Morris W. Brundige's blacksmith shop, was a stage house and hotel, kept by Captain John Smith. Judge Morris was in the habit of driving from Morrissania to Capture. John Smith's hotel to-day, and on the morrow would drive to Bedford in time to open court. On one of these drives, while sitting in the hotel parlor together, "Captain Smith," said to Judge Morris, "I would like to ask you a question, bit I feel timid; you might get angry." "Go ahead," said Judge Morris, "I promise you I will not be angry at any question you choose to ask." "Well," said Captain Smith, "I would like to know how you came to marry the woman you did."

It was a poser, and Judge Morris looked Captain John thoughtfully in the face for a period of time and said: "Captain John, did you ever know a man in your life but what some time in his life made a d---d fool of himself?" The question was fully answered.

Now I would say, in the coming election, for every voter to ponder full well the question and not let himself be misled into voting the straight ticket.

He should say to himself, after comparing the different candidates, I must pick out the best on either ticket and not stop for Republican or Democrat, nor for religious belief. Vote for the best men, and also remember, if your choice is for honest men, to keep them so ever after.

Yours truly,


Quaker Ridge Farm

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Maplewood, Home of Elkanah Mead, Sr., 411 Stanwich Road Greenwich


"Maplewood," home of Elkanah Mead Sr. (son of Amos Mead), 411 Stanwich Road (by intersection with Guinea Road), with horses in front. 

Friday, April 24, 2020

Daniel S. Mead House, Greenwich Avenue

This is the Daniel S. Mead House. It was located on the east side of Greenwich Avenue in the area where Richard's Store is today. (Photo credit: Greenwich Historical Society).

We are assuming that the picture above includes Daniel S. Mead and his wife, Huldah, who died in 1882. 

Their shared gravestone is located on the north side of the New Burial Grounds Association Cemetery next to the Second Congregational Church.