Welcome to our news and history blog!

Welcome to our news and history blog!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Deacon Abraham "Potter" Mead

Abraham Mead was born in 1742 who during the American Revolutionary War served as a Captain, assisting in the defense of New York.

But Abraham Mead is best known for the unique pottery he produced from his kiln. The following is reproduced from this link to the Historical Society of the Town of Greenwich:

Deacon Potter Mead was a prominent citizen of Horseneck, the original name for central Greenwich. He was a commissioned captain in the Revolutionary War, town treasurer, real estate agent, deacon and treasurer of the Second Congregational Church, and one of the first Connecticut potters. As a teenager he was apprenticed to Adam Staats, a Dutchman considered Connecticut’s first stoneware potter. Staats kiln was located just south of the Davis gristmill. According to legend, Deacon Potter Mead, from close observation of Staats, discovered the secret of salt glazing. When Staats observed him throwing salt into the kiln, he is said to have exclaimed, “He’ got it! He’s got it!” True or not, Mead is known for his functional stoneware that was sold to the farmers and merchants of the Greenwich area and probably beyond to New York and New Jersey as well. The blue design is typical of his work.

Later in life he served as a deacon in the Second Congregational Church. He died in 1827 and is interred in the cemetery adjacent to the church known as the New Burial Grounds Association Cemetery.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Can you help? Dr. William Mead, Revolutionary War Surgeon, 1st New York Regiment

The Association has received an inquiry from Glenn Hunger of Burnt Hills New York. Can you help? He was referred to us by Anne Young, archivist of the Historical Society of the Town of Greenwich, Connecticut.

Glenn is conducting research on Doctor William Mead, Revolutionary War Surgeon, 1st New York Regiment. Dr. Mead was the son of Benjamin Mead and Martha Ferris, born in Greenwich on October 15, 1747 and died on February 1, 1829. Dr. Mead is buried in Charlton, N.Y. 

Benjamin Mead and Martha Ferris are buried in our family plot at the Mead farm in North Greenwich off Cliffdale Road.

*From Spencer P. Mead’s
History and Genealogy of the Mead Family, William Mead is mentioned on page 404, and as having married Phebe Farrant (b. October 30, 1741, d. October 21, 1776).

*From Daniel M. Mead’s A History of the Town of Greenwich, William Mead is mentioned on page 290 as having William, Abigail and Anne. (Daniel M. Mead continues with names of children not attributed elsewhere to Benjamin Mead.)

Dr. William Mead married Geertruyd Myndertse in Schenectady, N.Y. and had two children - Catarina b. March 7, 1780 and Benjamin b. November 25, 1783.

Glenn wrote,
"I have found two references to Anne Mead. The first reference is in a geneologist’s notes in the Saratoga County Clerk’s Office indicating Anne is the daughter of Dr. William Mead. The second reference is of Anne and Geertruyd Mead’s signatures on a request to the County Clerk in appointing an executor to probate Dr. Mead’s estate in 1829. I have no additional information on Dr. Mead’s other children - William, Abigail, Catarina or Benjamin."
"I’m seeking any information, insights, references, etc. with regard to:
  • Doctor William Mead’s childhood, education (primary, secondary and medical), friends, family, medical practice, etc.
  • the death of Phebe Farrant and the lives of their three children - William, Abigail and Anne,
  • the lives of Dr. Mead’s two children with Geertruyd - Catarina and Benjamin.
I appreciate any help you are able to offer."

If you can assist Glenn please contact him:

Glenn Hunger
PO Box 529
Burnt Hills, NY
Tel: 518-399-9079

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Deacons Silas Hervey Mead: Abolitionist

As this is Black History Month we share an excerpt from a letter dated November 8, 1842 by Deacon Silas Hervey Mead of North Greenwich to Amos Starr Cooke, a Danbury-born missionary to the Hawaiian Islands. The original letter is in the archives of the Hawaiian Mission Children's Society which maintains the Mission Houses Museum in Honolulu:

You speak about the Abolitonists. I will here just state that their enemies gave them the name of persons of one idea and I for one will respond to that name. I hope I never shall have any other idea only to do God's Will without distinguishing whether it is popular or not, and that I believe is true respecting the largest part of the Abolitionists that I am acquainted with.

You say you are afraid some of the Abolitionists zeal for that object blinds their eyes to other benevolent objects, we often hear that said with us, so often, that it would be impossible for us to sleep. The truth is because we do not go and spend all our strength pushing the car where the most are pushing, then we are slandered.

I tell you my friend in a general way show me an Abolitionist, and I will show you a strong Temperance man, and a strong man for keeping the sabbath, and a strong man for God anyway and everyway, a real go ahead Christian. There may be some exceptions, but I should think not many in proportion to the whole.

You say you are afraid I am a getting cold on that subject: no my dear friend, nor shall I ever so long as I have the Bible to read, and my powers of reason left me. I have made up my mind not to foul my fingers with it anyway. I'll not vote for it, but against it, nor will I use the products of slave labor as a general thing neither for eating, or wearing, at home or abroad.

I must say that (as I do by alcohol) that I am opposed to it at all times and places and for anything and everything. And I would say to you hold on against slavery, it does good.

Web Site Update in Progress

The Association's web site is in the process of updating and redevelopment. Some of the features will be simplified. Links to this news-blog and the YouTube channel will also be added. Some of the visuals have been updated. Our hope is that our descendants near and far will further enjoy the web site as our primary educational tool for family and public outreach.