Gravestone Chronicles II: More Eighteenth-Century New England Carvers

A Cemetery Special


History of North Adams.

while it has 7,573 feet of brick arching, in which are 20,000,000 bricks. Its entire costs was $14,000,000 and 195 human lives.

The Pittsfield & North Adams railroad company was originally incorporated in 1843. Nothing was done under this charter however, so it expired and was renewed in 1846. During that year the road was commenced and compleated, at an expense of $450,000, the last rail being laid at 11 o’clock, October 6th 1846.


The Adams National Bank of North Adams was organized in 1832, with Caleb B. Turner as president; William E. Brayton as cashier; and Caleb B. Turner, Josiah Q. Robinson, Nathan Drury, David Anthony, Sanford Blackinton, Edward Richmond, Isaiah U. Hoxie, Samuel Bowen and James Wilbur, directors. The presidents since Mr. Turner, have been Nathan Drury, Daniel Smith, Duty S. Tyler, W. E. Brayton and Sanford Blackinton, who held the office at his death, on the 24th day of July 1885. September 14th Shubael Brayton, the vice-president was elected to the office. The cashier is Edward S. Wilkinson. The, original capital was $100,000, which upon the reorganization of the bank under the national law, in 1865, was increased to $350,000 and has since been increased to $500,000.

The Berkshire National Bank was organized in 1878, with Jarvis Rockwell, president; A. W. Hodge, vice-president; J. Rockwell, A. W. Hodge, James Hunter, A. D. Cady, W. H. Gaylord, S. W. Ingalls, Joseph White, James Chalmers and J. R. Houghton, directors; C. H. Ingalls cashier. About the first of the year of 1885, Mr. Ingalls was obliged to resign the cashiership, because of failing health, and A. D. Cady was appointed in his stead. Upon the death of Judge Rockwell, on the 14th of May 1883, the office of president was made vacant, and in June of the same year, James Hunter was elected to the office. The original capital of the institution was $100,000, which has since been increased to $200,000.

The North Adams Savings Bank, was incorporated in 1848, with William Brayton treasurer, who continued to 1858, when E. D. Whitaker was appointed. The bank has been very successful in all its ventures, and to-day stands at the head of the list as a solid, careful and well managed institution. The present treasurer is V. A. Whitaker, who succeeded his father in the office in 1873.

The Hoosac Savings Bank was organized in 1871 with Austin Bond as treasurer. The present treasurer is W. W. Butler.


On the 21st of October, 1882, an accident occurred in the local freight yard, whereby 35 workmen in the tunnel were killed, or injured severely. The want of a suitable place to care for the injured was severely felt. That same day Messrs W. L. Brown and W. S. Johnson headed, and circulated a subscription paper for the purpose of erecting a hospital in the village. The result of their labor is the present building on the sightly eminence in the northern part of the town. The property comprises the building and 30 acres of land surrounding it, which represents an expenditure of $19,900. Of this amount $11,378 was raised by subscription, $295 for the rent of land for two years previous to the completion of the building, $127 from an entertainment given by Prof. David Roberts, and a loan of $7500 from the savings bank. This left a deficit of $600 to be raised when the building was opened. The building was formally turned over to the board of control, by the building committee, on March 2d 1885 and the building declared to be ready to receive patients. Experienced nurses were engaged from New York, and all the arrangements were of the most complete character. The opening day it was estimated that fully fifteen hundred persons visited the building, where appropriate exercises were conducted, by the local clergymen. Following is the list of the first officers.

President — Mrs. Mary Williams.

Vice-presidents — Mrs. Helen A. Archer, Mrs. Anna W. Richmond, Mrs. Harriet E. Gallup.

Treasurer — Mrs. Isabell S. Millard.

Assistant Treasurer — Mrs. Ella E. Hunter.

Secretary — Mrs. Augustus P. Foster.

Assistant Secretary — Mrs. Louise B. Tyler.

Directors — Mrs. Delia Boland, Mrs. Celia Armstrong, Bridget O’Brien, Mrs. Ellen S. Hodge, Mrs. Sarah C. Read, Mrs. Fannie P. Brown, Mrs. Fannie J. Tinker, Mrs. Jane E. Lawrence, Mrs. Elizabeth D. Thayer, Mrs. Frances E. Swift, Mrs. Julia Sampson, Mrs. Harriet A. Thayer, Mrs. Frances M. Brayton, Ruth E. Millard, Mrs. Delia J. Houghton, Mrs. Carolyn B. Wright.

Clerk — Mrs. Hattie Ballou Cady.

While the hospital was being agitated and before its completion, the question was repeatedly asked, "what are we going to do with it?" Such good work has been done at the institution, that now, less than four months after the opening day, the question is asked, "how have we ever done without it?" Such demonstrates the change of public sentiment.


The first newspaper printed in North Adams was called the

Edited and adapted from the original by Laurel O’Donnell
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