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Friday, November 27, 2015

Mead Brothers Reach Los Angeles (1909)

Source: Greenwich Graphic. Saturday, July 17, 1909. Page 1.

Their Packard Roadster Makes the Trip of 4,175 Miles in Forty-one days.

The Graphic noted at the time of starting the trip of the Mead Brothers to the Pacific Coast by auto. The Los Angeles Times of June 30th in noticing their arrival there has the following description of the trip. There are a number of Greenwich people now residents in Los Angeles, among whom it may be mentioned E. W. Reynolds and the Archers, and the Messrs. Mead found familiar faces to greet them after their long overhaul jaunt:

Covered with the dust of fourteen States, and with the names of several thousand enthusiastic admirers written over the body of their car, E. D. Mead [Everett Mead] and his brother, A.N. Mead [Abram Newton Mead]* of Greenwich Ct., reached Los Angeles yesterday afternoon and a Packard forty-horse-power roadster. They have driven 4,175 miles over the roughest roads in the United States in forty-one days. They will proceed to Seattle and back home, a distance of more than 10,000 miles, before the journey ends.

A 1909 Packard. 

Through the mud that was axle deep, across sandy wastes where there are no habitations for miles, the car and its plucky crew chugged on. The long motor journey is only well begun. They like the life in the open and would rather take their chances on at motor car than in a train.

This adventurous journey was started on May 19th. Soon after reaching New York the going was found to be excellent and through New Jersey and Pennsylvania the two made good time. In Ohio the Packard began to strike rough the roads. The hard part of the trip began after leaving Chicago.

Three days were spent in the Windy City by the autoists, where they were royally received. Mead was given enough information concerning roads and routes to take him around the world. He listened to everything and then did as he had first planned.

Instead of taking a direct route to Seattle the motorist chose a zig zag course. After leaving Chicago Mead drove to Milwaukee and then came southward again, taking up the route followed by the New York-Seattle racers.

On the day the two Fords and the Acme reached Kansas City the Packard and it's crew rolled into town. The Fords left first, but Mead and his brother started with the big Acme, the fourth car in the race. The New York – Seattle racer took the lead and kept it for sixty miles. Then it stuck fast in the mud. The Packard passed the racers stalled on the road with a broken axle.

The car left the regular route at Rawlins, Wyo., and turned southward into Utah, Nevada and California.

For 150 miles these two men fought their way through mud that was almost impassable. Gumbo soil that clung to the wheels and impeded the progress of the Packard had to be scraped away with shovels. It was a severe road battle which the Packard and the crew won after a supreme effort.

Night overtook the travelers in the wilderness of Wyoming after one of the hardest fights of the trip. Miles from any habitation, and with scarcely enough food for their evening meal the undaunted autoists had to take a cold bite and retire on their machine. It was impossible to sleep beneath the car. The country was flooded.

Wolves howled an accompaniment to their chugging motor the following night as they sought to reach a settlement 150 miles away. Again they were obliged to camp out. Wild animals abounded in the lonely region, and came quite close to the motor car during the night. The tracks of bear and mountain lion could be seen in the mud in the early morning.

The mud-begimed travelers were objects of great curiosity in the towns through which they passed. Crowds gathered around the car and curious persons insisted on writing their names on the machine.

Mead came through Nevada by way of death Valley, passing through Goldfield and then crossing the desert to Mojave. The autoist reached this city by way of the San Francisquito Canyon, Saugus, Newhall grade and the San Fernando Road.

Mead will remain in Los Angeles several days. His car is housed at the Western Motor Car Company's Garage, and will be driven through town today, and Mead wants to add other signatures to the thousands which already at adorn the car.

The two will leave the latter part of this week for the Seattle fair, and, after spending several weeks in the north, will make the return journey by the northern route to their home in Greenwich.

* Both Everett Mead and Abram Newton Mead were sons of Solomon and Hannah Mead. They lived in what is known today as the Mead Parish House behind the Second Congregational Church in Greenwich. 

Sample Land Indexes of Mead Family Lands: Greenwich, Connecticut Town Hall

The Sage of New Lebanon: A Man of Public Spirit is Milo Mead (1911)

Source: Greenwich Graphic. Friday, July 21, 1911. Page 1.

His Old House Stands a Reminder of the Past Amid Modern and Elegant Residences Where Once was a Farm is Now a Village

Up on a hill overlooking its more pretentious neighbors stands the home of Milo Mead, known as the sage of New Lebanon. The immediate locality is known as Byram and Byram Shore. Just over the river is Port Chester in New York State. This section of the town goes by a number of names, some it is called East Port Chester, by new residents Hawthorne, and Mr. Mead has given it the name New Lebanon. To the stranger all these names are puzzling and we doubt if there is a spot of the same size in the State of Connecticut that is burdened with so many appellations.

The post office is called Hawthorne but most people when they write to residents of this quarter of the town address their letters East Port Chester. Perhaps no other person has done so much for this locality as Milo Mead. Years ago in earlier times of his house they were but vacant fields and woods which belonged to farms. He could stand, when he was a boy, on the piazza of his house and his view was obstructed by dwellings; his house was far away from any other. To-day he can look from the  porch and an entirely different scene presents itself; houses have built all around his except to the westward. Beautiful and costly residences have been erected and there is a large growth in population and the summer homes of many wealthy men are located within a stone's throw of his house. And this growth is of a substantial nature representing all classes, as well as men of wealth, intelligence and prominent in the world of business.

Mr. Mead is a man of public spirit and has been deeply interested in this growth. Instead of turning the cold shoulder to newcomers and giving them the impression that he preferred to do so, far as he could, keep things in a primitive state, he has extended the hand of welcome to all who desired to buy property in that section and locate there. He has helped many men and times when help was needed in business ways. His advice has been sought for repeatedly and he has hand into his pocket in many cases where he was asked for aid, perhaps too much so for his own financial good. He called the place in New Lebanon because he thought that East Port Chester was too much associated with Port Chester which is in New York State and the name New Lebanon it was suggestive to him of a beautiful spot.

There is a New Lebanon Opera House, New Lebanon Drug Store, New Lebanon Market, New Lebanon Carpet Beating Factory, and other business enterprises named from the place. The improvements about the locality seem to be his hobby and he takes great pride and interest in the people of the place. He has erected several shops and offered their use at ridiculously low sums in order to bring trade to New Lebanon. He said to the GRAPHIC the other day, "I don't want the people to go to Port Chester and trade. The money should stay here if we can keep it here. This is Connecticut and not New York State, and we ought to patronize our own people." He is not a narrow man, but broad in his views, but he will not allow liquor to be sold in any of his buildings.

The Byram road leading to the shore was recently widened fifty feet at his expense, and other thoroughfares have also been improved and straightened him, and in some cases he has cut a street through land at considerable cost to himself. The people of New Lebanon and that locality all speak of him very highly. He lives in the old homestead where he was born and which commands a most beautiful view of the Sound, up-and-down.

The improvements he has made about New Lebanon and cannot fully enumerated and the value of what he has done it for the town and at locality is in estimable. He has seen the elegant residences which are in front of his house along the shore erected. They are owned by Mr. C. R. Mallory, Mrs. H. Mallory, Mr. Robert Mallory, Mr. W. J. Tingue, Mr. John McClave, Mr. James H. Hunt, Mr. Peter F. Meyer and others. Mr. Joseph Milbank is now building opposite Mr. Mead a very elegant mansion, which is said, it will be one of the handsomest along the Sound. It is on the property once owned by Mr. Starbuck.

The old house presents a quaint and picturesque appearance way up on the hill and suggests the past. It is so high up that the view from it can never be obstructed to any great extent. There were three of these charming location to Greenwich which were selected and built upon by the Mead's. One is what is known as Charles Mead's Point, the second, Field Point, where he lived Oliver Mead; the third is the home of Milo Mead. They afforded not only beautiful sites for homes, but were near the Sound, which gave them benefits to be derived from the nearness to the salt water. Then they had many acres of fertile field for farms.

The old house was built by a Mr. Close sometime before the Revolutionary war, and is at least one hundred and fifty years old. Mr. Mead's father bought it of Mr. Close, and Mr. Milo Mead has always lived there. About seventy-five or eighty years ago an addition was made to it. It is better preserved than many of the old houses about Greenwich, for Mr. Mead keeps it in good repair.

To compare it with the modern house across the way would be like placing the old lumbering stagecoach alongside the Saratoga flyer. But yet with it quaintness and age there is a feeling of quietness and rest which comes over one when passing in its doorway that is refreshing after one has been through the modern and elegant dwellings which are its neighbors. It's the difference between the electric light and the tallow candle.

North Greenwich Farms; Silas E. Mead Sells Property (1910)

Source: Greenwich Graphic. Saturday, January 22, 1910. Page 1.

It Is Said That a Syndicate Controlled by the N. Y., W. & B. Road is Buying Property in That Section.

It came somewhat as a surprise to the friends of Assessor Silas E. Mead other residents of Greenwich, when it was announced that he had signed a contract for the sale of his three hundred acre farm On Upper King Street, near Quaker Ridge. It is one of the most sightly sections of this locality of highlands, and one of the few farms remaining in a family who have held the title through half a dozen generations. Some years ago many of the Greenwich farms had come to their owners by descent through the family, the original purchase having been made of the Indians. There are not many left where they have remained in one family so long. The price, report says, is something over $100,000.

There is said to be a boom in farm lands all through this section, due to the proposed building of the New York, Westchester and Boston Railway, the survey which crosses the Mead farm, and as far up Westchester County as Bedford, thousands of acres of land have been sold, through a real estate firm of that section to a syndicate of young wealthy New York men, who see possibilities of making big returns from speculating in these lands, which they expect to sell in large tracts to city men of abundant means, who want to develop the same according to their own peculiar ideas and taste for their suburban homes.

It is expected that the real estate market throughout that entire section will be very active in the coming spring. And fact a like condition has never hitherto existed in Westchester county. Farm lands have brought good prices, but have chiefly been purchased by those intending to follow farming as a means of likelihood. But now and then a particularly attractive property has been taken over by some enterprising New Yorker, who has secured a fine estate. Yet in the present circumstance these lines are not sought for such home sites. And in the near future Westchester county and the adjoining town of Greenwich, will be notable as the finest residential section with the most costly suburban homes anywhere in the vicinity of the metropolis.

Another farm it recently sold by N. A. Knapp is the James Husted Farm at Round Hill, the view from which is the most extended thereabouts, to R. J. Walsh, probably purchased for speculative purposes.