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Title: Quaker Hill - A Sociological Study
Author: Wilson, Warren H. (Warren Hugh), 1867-1937
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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Literature in Agriculture (CHLA), Cornell University)

               QUAKER HILL

         WARREN H. WILSON, A. M.


                IN THE


               NEW YORK

           COPYRIGHT 1907,
           WARREN H. WILSON.








Sources                                                              5


The Locality                                                         8


The Assembling of the Quakers                                       16


Economic Activities of the Quaker Community                         20


Amusements                                                          28


The Ideals of the Quakers                                           32


Morals of the Quaker Community                                      38


Toleration of Hostile Forces                                        50



OF AKIN HALL, 1828 TO 1880.


Communication,--The Roads                                           63


Economic Changes                                                    69


Religious Life in Transition                                        79



TIME, 1880 TO 1907.


Demotic Composition                                                 88


The Economy of House and Field                                      98


New Ideals of Quakerism, Assimilation of Strangers                 112


The Common Mind                                                    118


Practical Differences and Resemblances                             130


The Social Organization                                            135


The Social Welfare                                                 141




Appendix A:--Heads of Families in Oblong Meeting, 1760             155

Appendix B:--Names of Customers of Daniel Merritt, 1771            158

Appendix C:--Deeds of Meeting-House Lands                          167


Fourteen years ago the author came to Quaker Hill as a resident, and has
spent at least a part of each of the intervening years in interested
study of the locality. For ten of those years the fascination of the
social life peculiar to the place was upon him. Yet all the time, and
increasingly of late, the disillusionment which affects every resident
in communities of this sort was awakening questions and causing regrets.
Why does not the place grow? Why do the residents leave? What is the
illusive unity which holds all the residents of the place in affection,
even in a sort of passion for the locality, yet robs them of full
satisfaction in it, and drives the young and ambitious forth to live

The answer to these questions is not easily to be had. It is evident
that on Quaker Hill life is closely organized, and that for eighteen
decades a continuous vital principle has given character to the
population. The author has attempted, by use of the analysis of the
material, according to the "Inductive Sociology" of Professor Franklin
H. Giddings, to study patiently in detail each factor which has played
its part in the life of this community.

This book presents the result of that study, and the author acknowledges
his indebtedness to Professor Giddings for the working analysis
necessary to the knowledge of his problem, as well as for patient
assistance and inspiring interest. The gradual unfolding of the
conclusions, the logical unity of the whole, and the explanation of that
which before was not clear, have all been the fruit of this patient

The study of human society is at the present time little more than a
classifying of material. Only with great reserve should any student
announce ultimate results, or generalize upon the whole problem. For
this period of classifying and analyzing the material, such study of
limited populations as this should have value. The author makes no
apology for the smallness of his field of study. Quaker Hill is not even
a civil division. It is a fraction of a New York town. Therefore no
statistical material of value is available. It is, moreover, not now an
economic unit, though it still may be considered a sociological one.
This study, therefore, must be of interest as an analysis of the working
of purely social forces in a small population, in which the whole
process may be observed, more closely than in the intricate and subtle
evolution of a larger, more self-sufficient social aggregate.

The descriptive history of Quaker Hill, which it is my purpose in this
book to write, comprises three periods; and the descriptive sociology
records two differing yet related forms of social life, connected by a
period of transition. This study will then be made up of three parts:
First, the Quaker Community; second, the Transition; and third, the
Mixed Community. The periods of time corresponding to these three are:
The Period of the Quaker Community, 1730 to 1830; second, the Period of
Transition, 1830 to 1880; and third, the Period of the Mixed Community,
1880 to 1905.

The Quaker Community, which ran its course in the one hundred years
following the settlement of the Hill, presents the social history of a
homogeneous population, assembled in response to common stimuli,
obedient to one ideal, sharing an environment limited by nature,
cultivating an isolation favored by the conditions of the time,
intermarrying, and interlacing their relations of mutual dependence
through a diversified industry; knowing no government so well as the
intimate authority of their Monthly Meeting; and after a century
suffering absorption in the commerce and thinking of the time through
increased freedom of communication.

The Transition follows the Division of the Quaker Meeting in 1828, the
building of turnpikes, and the coming of the railroad in 1849. A
cultured daughter of Quaker Hill, whose life has extended through some
of those years, has called them "the dark ages." It was the middle age
of the community. The economic life of the place was undergoing change,
under the penetrating influence of the railroad; the population was
undergoing radical renovation, the ambitious sons of the old stock
moving away, and their places being filled at the bottom of the social
ladder by foreigners, and by immigration of residents and "summer
boarders" of the "world's people." Above all, the powerful ideal of
Quakerism was shattered. The community had lost the "make-believe" at
which it had played for a century in perfect unity. With it went the
moral and social authority of the Meeting. Two Meetings mutually
contradicting could never express the ideal of Quakerism, that asserted
the inspiration of all and every man with the one divine spirit. This
schism, too, was not local, but the Monthly Meeting on the Hill was
divided in the same year as the Yearly Meeting in New York, the
Quarterly Meetings in the various sections, and the local Monthly
Meetings throughout the United States.

The Period of the Mixed Community, from the building of Akin Hall and
the Mizzen-Top Hotel in 1880 to the year 1905 has been studied
personally by the present writer; and it is his belief that during this
short period, especially from 1890 to 1900, the Hill enjoyed as perfect
a communal life as in the Period of the Quaker Community. The same
social influence was at work. An exceptionally strong principle of
assimilation, to be studied in detail in this book, which made of the
original population a century and a half earlier a perfect community,
now made a mixed population of Quakers, Irish Catholics and New York
City residents, into a community unified, no less obedient to a
modified ideal, having its leaders, its mode of association, its
peculiar local integrity and a certain moral distinction.

This period appears at the time of this writing, in 1907, to be coming
slowly to an end, owing to the death of many of the older members of the
Quaker families, and the swift diminution--with their authority
removed--of the Quaker influence, which was the chief factor in the
community's power of assimilation.

If one may state in condensed form what this study discovers in Quaker
Hill that is uncommon and exceptional, one would say that the social
peculiarity of the Hill is: first, the consistent working out of an idea
in a social population, with the resultant social organization, and
communal integrity; and second, the power of this community to
assimilate individuals and make them part of itself.


The Quaker Community, from its Settlement in 1728, to the Division in 1828.



The sources of the history and descriptive sociology of Quaker hill are,
first, the reminiscences of the older residents of the Hill, many of
whom have died in the period under direct study in this paper; and
second, the written records mentioned below. At no time was Quaker Hill
a civil division, and the church records available were not kept with
such accuracy as to give numerical results; so that statistical material
is lacking.

The written sources are:

    1. The records of Oblong Meeting of the Society of Friends until
    1828; of the Hicksite Meeting until 1885, when it was "laid down";
    and of the Orthodox Meeting until 1905, when it ceased to meet.[1]

    2. Records of Purchase Meeting of the Society of Friends for the
    period antedating 1770.

    3. Ledgers of the Merritt general store of dates 1771, 1772, 1839.

    4. Daybooks and ledgers of the Toffey store of dates 1815, 1824,

    5. The "Quaker Hill Series" of Local History, publications of the
    Quaker Hill Conference. In particular Nos. II, III, IV, VII, VIII,
    IX, X, XI, XIII, XIV, XV, XVI and XVII.[2]

    6. Maps of Fredericksburgh and vicinity by Robert Erskine in the De
    Witt Clinton Collection, in the New York Historical Society

    7. Papers by Hon. Alfred T. Ackert, read before the Dutchess County
    Society in the City of New York, 1898 and 1899.

    8. An Historical Sketch. The Bi-Centennial of the New York Yearly
    Meeting, an address delivered at Flushing, 1895, by James Wood.

    9. A Declaration of some of the Fundamental Principles of Christian
    Truth, as held by the Religious Society of Friends.

    10. James Smith's History of Dutchess County.

    11. Philip H. Smith's History of Dutchess County.

    12. Lossing's "Field Book of the Revolution."

    13. Bancroft's "History of the United States."

    14. Irving's "Life of Washington."

    15. "Gazetteer of New York," 1812.

    16. Akin and Ferris, Wing, Briggs and Hoag Family Records.

    17. De Chastellux's "Travels in North America."

    18. Anburey's "Travels in North America."

    19. Thatcher's "Military Journal of the Revolution."

    20. Wilson's "Rise and Fall of the Slave Power."

    21. Barnum's "Enoch Crosby."

    22. "The Writings of Washington," especially in Fall of 1778.

    23. Proceedings of the New York Historical Society, 1859, etc.

    24. New Milford Gazette, 1858, Boardman's Letter.

    25. Poughkeepsie Eagle, July, 1876, Lossing's Articles.

    26. Fishkill (New York) Packet, 1776-1783.

    27. New York Mercury, 1776-1783.

    28. Tax-lists of the Town of Pawling, New York.

[1] The oldest records of Oblong meeting are contained in the
records of Purchase Meeting, the mother society, from the earliest date,
about 1741, at which Oblong is mentioned, to 1744, when it became an
independent monthly meeting. Most of the early settlers on the Oblong
came through Purchase, married there and left their names on its pages.
From the year 1744 Oblong Meeting was a meeting of record, but for
thirteen years the minutes were written on loose sheets, which have been
lost. They may indeed be in existence, for in 1760 the meeting directs
Clerk Zebulon Ferriss to record the minutes for the time he has been
clerk; and appoints two to record the previous minutes from the
establishment of the meeting. If those two did as they were directed,
there should be a book of the oldest records of the Hill in existence;
and in any case there may be in some old leather bound trunk, leaves of
records from 1744 to 1757, whose value is beyond calculation. The
minutes of the Meeting from 1757 until the division, and from that date
until the Hicksite Meeting was laid down in 1885, are in the possession
of John Cox, Librarian of the Yearly Meeting (Hicksite). From 1828, the
year of the division, until the present year, the minutes of the
Orthodox Friends are in the possession of William H. Osborn. The minutes
of the Women's Meeting previous to 1807 are missing; one volume, from
9th Mo., 14th, 1807, to 3rd Mo., 16th, 1835, is with John Cox. In the
same place are three volumes of the record of Births, Marriages and
Deaths: one from 1745 to 1774; then, after a gap, due to the absence of
a volume, is the second, from 1786 to 1866; and a third volume of births
and deaths alone from 1828 to 1893. Volumes lacking in this collection
are the records of births and deaths previous to 1828: and of marriages
from 1774 to 1786.

The records of the present Orthodox Meeting in full, as well as the
following two volumes of the records of the Preparative Meeting of
Ministers and Elders at Oblong, are in the possession of William H.
Osborn on Quaker Hill; first from 10th month, 12th, 1783, to 1st month,
13th, 1878; and second from 1878 to present time. Last of all, the
record of births and deaths of the meeting, from 1810 to the present
day, following the line of the Orthodox society, is in the possession of
the Post family on Quaker Hill.


David Irish--A Memoir, by his daughter, Mrs. Phoebe T. Wanzer, of Quaker
Hill, N. Y.

Quaker Hill in the Eighteenth century, by Rev. Warren H. Wilson, of
Brooklyn, N. Y.

Quaker Hill in the Nineteenth century, by Rev. Warren H. Wilson, of
Brooklyn, N. Y.

Hiram B. Jones and His School, by Rev. Edward L. Chichester, of
Hartsdale, N. Y.

Richard Osborn--A Reminiscence, by Margaret B. Monahan, of Quaker Hill,
N. Y.

Albert J. Akin--A Tribute, by Rev. Warren H. Wilson, of Brooklyn, N. Y.

Ancient Homes and Early Days at Quaker Hill, by Amanda Akin Stearns, of
Quaker Hill, N. Y.

Thomas Taber and Edward Shove--a Reminiscence, by Rev. Benjamin Shove,
of New York.

Some Glimpses of the Past, by Alicia Hopkins Taber, of Pawling, N. Y.

The Purchase Meeting, by James Wood, of Mt. Kisco, N. Y.

In Loving Remembrance of Ann Hayes, by Mrs. Warren H. Wilson, of
Brooklyn, N. Y.

Washington's Headquarters at Fredericksburgh, by Lewis S. Patrick, of
Marinette, Wis.

Historical Landmarks in the Town of Sherman, by Ruth Rogers, of Sherman,



In the hill country, sixty-two miles north of New York, and twenty-eight
miles east of the Hudson River at Fishkill, lies Quaker Hill. It is the
eastern margin of the town of Pawling, and its eastern boundary is the
state line of Connecticut. On the north and south it is bounded by the
towns of Dover and Patterson respectively; on the west by a line which
roughly corresponds to the western line of the Oblong, that territory
which was for a century in dispute between the States of New York and
Connecticut. Its length is the north and south dimension of Pawling.

This area is six and a half miles long, north and south, and irregularly
two miles in width, east and west. Quaker Hill can scarcely be called a
hamlet, because instead of a cluster of houses, it is a long road
running from south to north by N. N. E. and intersected by four roads
running from east to west. The households located on this road for one
hundred and sixty years constituted a community of Quakers dwelling near
their Meeting House; and until the building of the Harlem Railroad in
the valley below in 1849, had their own stores and local industries.

Before the railroad came, Quaker Hill was obliged to go to Poughkeepsie
for access to the world, over the precipitous sides of West Mountain,
and all supplies had to be brought up from the river level to this
height. At present Quaker Hill, in its nearest group of houses at the
Mizzen-Top Hotel, is three miles and three-quarters from the railroad
station at Pawling. Other houses are five and seven miles from Pawling.
On the east the nearest station of the New York, New Haven and Hartford
Railroad, New Milford, is nine miles away. The "Central New England"
Branch of the N. Y. N. H. & H., running east and west, is at West
Patterson or West Pawling, seven and eight miles.

The natural obstacle which does more than miles to isolate Quaker Hill
is its elevation. The "Mizzen-Top Hill," as it is now called, is a
straightforward Quaker road, mounting the face of the Hill four hundred
feet in a half-mile. The ancient settler on horseback laid it out; and
the modern wayfarer in hotel stage, carriage or motor-car has to follow.
Quaker Hill is conservative of change.

The mean elevation is about 1,100 feet above the sea. The highest point
being Tip-Top, 1,310 feet, and the lowest point 620 feet. The Hill is
characterized by its immediate and abrupt rise above surrounding
localities, being from 500 to 830 feet above the village of Pawling, in
which the waters divide for the Hudson and Housatonic Rivers. On its
highest hill rises the brook which becomes the Croton River. From almost
the whole length of Quaker Hill road one looks off over intervening
hills to the east for twenty-five miles, and to the west for forty miles
to Minnewaska and Mohonk; and to the north fifty and sixty miles to the
Catskill Mountains.

One's first impressions are of the green of the foliage and herbage. The
grass is always fresh, and usually the great heaving fields are mellowed
with orange tints and the masses of trees are of a lighter shade of
green than elsewhere. The qualities of the soil which have made Quaker
Hill "a grass country" for cattle make it a delight to the eye. Well
watered always, when other sections may be in drought, its natural
advantages take forms of beauty which delight the artist and satisfy the
eye of the untrained observer.

The Hill is a conspicuous plateau, very narrow, extending north and
south. It is "the place that is all length and no breadth." Six miles
long upon the crest of the height runs the road which is its main
thoroughfare, and was in its first century the chief avenue of travel.
Crossing it at right angles are four roads, that now carry the wagon and
carriage traffic to the valleys on either side; which since railroad
days are the termini of all journeys. The elevation above the
surrounding hills and valleys is such that one must always climb to
attain the hill; and one moves upon its lofty ridge in constant sight of
the distant conspicuous heights, the Connecticut uplands east of the
Housatonic on one side, and on the other, the Shawangunk and Catskill
Mountains, west of the Hudson, all of them more than 25 miles away.

Unsheltered as it is, the locality is subject to severe weather. The
extreme of heat observed has been 105 degrees; and of cold--24 degrees.

Quaker Hill possesses natural advantages for agriculture only. No
minerals of commercial value are there; although iron ore is found in
Pawling and nearby towns. On the confines of the Hill, in Deuell Hollow,
a shaft was driven into the hillside for forty feet, by some lonely
prospector, and then abandoned; to be later on seized upon and made the
traditional location of a gold mine. The Quaker Hill imagination is more
fertile and varied than Quaker Hill land. No commercial advantages have
ever fallen upon the place, except those resultant from cultivation of
the fertile soil in the way of stores, now passed away; and the
opportunity to keep summer boarders in the heated season.

Interest which attaches to Quaker Hill is of a three-fold sort:
historical, scenic and climatic. The locality has a history of
peculiarly dramatic interest. It is beautiful with a rare and satisfying
dignity and loveliness of scene; and it is the choice central spot of a
region bathed in a salubrious atmosphere which has had much to do with
its social character in the past, and is to-day very effective in making
the place a summer settlement of New York people. The population is
increased one hundred per cent. in the summer months, the increase being
solely due to the healthful and refreshing nature of the place.

The history of the locality is associated with the quaint name, "The
Oblong." This was the name of a strip of land, lying along the eastern
boundary of New York State, now part of Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess
Counties, and narrowing to the northward, which was for a century in
dispute between New York and Connecticut.

There had been a half century in which this was all disputed land,
between the Dutch at New York and the English in New England. Then
followed a half century of dispute as to the boundary between sister
colonies, which are now New York and Connecticut. As soon as this was
settled in 1731 the immigration flowed in, and the history of Quaker
Hill, the first settlement in the Oblong, begins. It was granted to New
York; and in compensation the lands on which Stamford and Greenwich
stand were granted to Connecticut after a long and bitter dispute. The
end of the dispute and the first settlement of the Oblong came, for
obvious reasons, in the same year. The first considerable settlement of
pioneers was made at Quaker Hill in 1731, by Friends, who came from
Harrison's Purchase, now a part of Rye.[3]

The historical interest of the locality dwells in the contrast between
the simple annals of Quakerism, which was practiced there in the
eighteenth century, and the military traditions which have fallen to the
lot of peaceful Quaker Hill. The "Old Meeting House," known for years
officially as Oblong Meeting House, experienced in its past, full of
memories of men of peace, the violent seizures by men of war. That
storied scene, in the fall of 1778, when the Meeting House was seized
for the uses of the army as a hospital,[4] has lived in the thoughts of
all who have known the place, and has been cherished by none more
reverently than by the children of Quakers, whose peace the soldiers
invaded. Both the soldier and the Quaker laid their bones in the dust of
the Hill. Both had faith in liberty and equality. The history of Quaker
Hill in the eighteenth century is the story of these two schools of
idealists, who ignored each other, but were moved by the same passion,
obeyed the same spirit. It is said that a locality never loses the
impression made upon it by its earliest residents. Certain it is that
the roots of modern things are to be traced in that earliest period, and
through a continuous self-contained life until the present day.

In the eighteenth century Quaker Hill was the chosen asylum of men of
peace. Yet it became the rallying place of periodic outbursts of the
fighting spirit of that warlike age; and it was invaded during the
great struggle for national independence by the camps of Washington.

There is a dignity common to Washington battling for liberty, and the
Quaker pioneers serenely planning seven years before the Revolution for
the freedom of the slave. But he was a Revolutionist, they were loyal to
King George; he was a man of blood, brilliant in the garb of a warrior,
and they were men of peace, dreaming only of the kingdom of God. He was
fighting for a definite advance in liberty to be enjoyed at once; they
were set on an enfranchisement that involved one hundred years; and a
greater war at the end than his revolution. Their records contains no
mention of his presence here, though his soldiers seized and fortified
the Meeting House.[5] His letters never mention the Quakers, neither
their picturesque abode, their dreams of freedom for the slave, nor
their Tory loyalty.

Each cherished his ideal and staked his life and ease and happiness upon
it. Each, after the fashion of a narrow age, ignored the other's
adherence to that ideal. To us they are sublime figures in bold contrast
crossing that far-off stage: Washington, booted, with belted sword,
spurring his horse up the western slope of the Hill, to review the
soldiers of the Revolution in 1778; and Paul Osborn, Joseph Irish and
Abner Hoag, plain men, unarmed save with faith, riding their plough
horses down the eastern slope in 1775, to plead for the freedom of the
slave at the Yearly Meeting at Flushing.

What effect the beauty of the place had upon the pioneer settlers it is,
of course, impossible to say, for they have left no record of their
appreciation of its beauty. Probably their interest in the picturesque
was the same as that of a Quaker elder, of fine and choice culture after
the Quaker standards, who said to the author, with a quiet laugh:
"People all say that the views from my house are very beautiful, and I
suppose they are; but I have lived here all my life, and I have never
seen it." A Quakeress confessed to the same indifference to the beauty
of the Hill, until she had resided for a time in another state, and had
mingled with those who had a lively sense of beauty of scene; returning
thereafter to the Hill, it appeared beautiful to her ever afterward.

The land has been for several generations under a high state of
cultivation. The keeping of many cattle has enriched the broad pastures;
and the dairy industry has been carried on with constant fertilizing of
the lands; so that the great fields, heaping up one upon another, high
above the valley, and plunging down in steep slopes so suddenly that the
falling land is lost from view and the valley below seems to hang
unattached, are covered with a brilliancy of coloring and a variety of
those rich tints of green and orange which spell to the eye abundance,
and arouse a keen delight, like that of possessing and enjoying.

There is also a large dignity in the outlines of every scene, which
constantly expands the sensations and gives, on every hand, a sense of
exhilaration and a pleasurable excitement to the emotions, which seems
in experience to have something to do with the industry and application
characteristic of Quaker Hill.

With this the atmosphere has had much to do, no doubt, being dry and
soft. The first sensation of one alighting from a train in the town is
one of lightness and exhilaration. This sensation continues through the
first hours of one's stay on the Hill.[6] After the first day of
exhilaration come a day or more of drowsiness, with nights of profound
sleep. In some persons a heightened nervousness is experienced, but in
most cases the Hill has the effect upon those who reside there of a
steady nervous arousal, a pleasure in activity, and a keen interest in
life and work.

Whether the early settlers, in selecting the highest ground in this
region, had a sense of this excellence of the climatic effect we do not
know; but their descendants believe that such was their reason for
settling the highest arable land on the Hill before the valleys or the
lower slopes were cleared.

It is the common tradition that they settled on the Hill first, and on
its highest parts, in order to avoid the malaria of the lowlands; as
well as because they thought the hill lands to be more fertile.

The excellence of the climate is witnessed in the long lives of its
residents. There were living in 1903, in a population of four hundred,
five persons, each of whom was at least ninety years of age; and
fifteen, each of whom was more than seventy-five years of age.

[3] Mr. James Wood, in his Bicentennial Address in 1895, thus
described the Oblong:

The eastern side of the country had been settled by Presbyterians from
Connecticut, and the western side along the Hudson River by the Dutch.
The feeling between them was far from friendly. Their disputes had been
very bitter, and Rye and Bedford had revolted from New York's
jurisdiction. Their whipping-posts stood ready for the punishment of any
from the river settlements who committed even slight offenses within
their limits. As the two peoples naturally repelled each other they had
left a strip of land, comparatively unoccupied, between them. This
continued in nearly a north and south line, parallel with the river, and
a little more than midway between it and the Connecticut and
Massachusetts lines, as far as they extended. Into and through the strip
of land the Quaker stream flowed, like a liquid injected into a fissure
in the rocks. Each Quaker home as it settled became a resting place for
those who followed, for it was a cardinal principle of Quaker
hospitality to keep open house for all fellow members, under all

[4] "One First Day morning, in the mellow October days of that
year, the worshipping stillness of the Friends' Meeting was broken by
the tramp of horses, and the jangling of spurs, as a band of soldiers
rode up, dismounted and entered the building. They remained quiet and
reverent, till the handshaking of the elders closed the meeting; then
the commanding officer rose, and in the name of the Continental Congress
took possession of the building for a hospital for the troops, and as
such it was used all that winter. After this meetings were held in the
'great room' in the house of Paul Osborn, and were often frequented by
soldiers stationed in the place, who listened attentively to the
speaking, and left quietly at the close of the meeting."--Richard
Osborn--a Reminiscence, by Margaret B. Monahan, Quaker Hill Local
History Series, No. VIII.

[5] In the garret of the Meeting House rifle-ports, cut through
the original planks, were discovered by the present writer.

[6] "Bodily functions are facilitated by atmospheric conditions
which make evaporation from the skin and lungs rapid. That weak persons
whose variations of health furnish good tests, are worse when the air is
surcharged with water, and better when the weather is fine; and that
commonly such persons are enervated by residence in moist localities but
invigorated by residence in dry ones, are facts generally recognized.
And this relation of cause and effect, manifest in individuals,
doubtless holds in races."--Herbert Spencer, Principles of Sociology,
Vol. I, p. 21.



The social mind of the Quaker Hill population was formed, at the
settlement of the place, in a common response to common stimuli. The
population was congregated from Long Island and Massachusetts
settlements, by the tidings of the opening of this fertile land of the
Oblong for settlement in 1731. I infer from the fact that settlements
were previously made on both sides, at Fredericksburgh on one side, and
at New Milford on the other,--at New Milford there was a Quaker Meeting
established in 1729, fifteen years before Quaker Hill--that the value of
the lands in the Oblong was well advertised. From the fact noted by
James Wood (The Purchase Meeting, p. 10) that "the first settlement in
any considerable numbers was upon Quaker Hill in the Oblong," I infer
that the uncommon promise of this hill land had been made known to the
Quakers then assembling at this "Purchase in the Rye Woods," and that
Quaker Hill was settled in response to the stimulus of valuable, fertile
lands offered for occupation and ownership.

It seems to have been the desire of the first settlers to form a
community where they could live apart, maintain their form of religion
and possess land fertile and rich. The Quakers are always shrewd as to
economic affairs, and the business motive is never lost sight of in the
spiritual inner light. In choosing Quaker Hill soil they selected ground
which after one hundred and sixty-seven years is the richest in the
region, sustains the best dairies, and is able longer than any other in
the neighborhood in time of drought to afford abundant green grass
and verdure.

[Illustration: MAP No. I.

QUAKER HILL AND VICINITY. (From Robert Erskine's Map, 1778-1780, in De
Witt Clinton Collection, New York Historical Society.)]

[Illustration: MAP No. II.

QUAKER HILL AND VICINITY. (Based on a tracing of United States
Geographical Survey.)]

To this place thus secluded, came Benjamin Ferriss in 1728, and Nathan
Birdsall. They settled upon the sites marked 31 and 39; which are 1,200
and 1,100 feet above the sea, and very near the highest ground for many
miles. There was at this time, 1729, a meeting of Friends at New
Milford, nine miles away; but these two men came from Purchase Meeting
in the town of Rye, forty miles directly to the South. There soon
followed others, bearing the names, Irish, Wing, Briggs, Toffey, Akin,
Taber, Russell, Osborn, Merritt, Dakin, Hoag. In ten years the tide of
settlement was flowing full. In forty years the little community was
filled with as many as could profitably find a living.

Complete records of the sources of this immigration are not available.
John Cox, Jr., Librarian of the Yearly Meeting of Friends, says "the
records do not show in any direct way where the members came from. A few
came from Long Island meetings by way of Purchase, but most of them from
the East, and I believe from Massachusetts. Indirectly the records show
that the members occasionally went on visits into New England, and took
certificates of clearance there (to marry)." Dartmouth, Mass., a town
between Fall River and New Bedford, was the original home of so many of
them that it easily leads all localities as a source of Quaker Hill
ancestry. The Akin, Taber, Briggs families came from Dartmouth, which
was in a region of both temporary and permanent Quaker settlement.
Quaker Hill, R. I., is within fifteen miles of Dartmouth. The residents
of Quaker Hill, New York, preserve traditions of the returns of the
early Friends "to Rhode Island." There is a Briggs family tradition of
the first pair of boots owned on the Hill, which were borrowed in turn
by every man who made a visit to the ancestral home at Dartmouth.

It is probable also that some of the original residents came from Long
Island, though from what localities I do not know. The minutes of
Purchase Meeting at Rye, through which meeting most of the Quaker Hill
settlers came, indicate in only a limited number of cases that the
immigrant came from a farther point; and leave the impression that the
Friend so commended to the Oblong was already a resident of "the
Purchase," or of its related meetings at Flushing on Long Island. An
example is the case of William Russell and his wife, notable pioneers,
the earliest residents of Site 25, whose letter from Purchase Meeting in
1741 indicates only that they came to Oblong from Purchase.

The settlement of the Hill continued from the early years, 1728-1731, at
which it began, until 1770, when the community may be said to have been
complete. The land was supporting by that time all it would bear. Since
that time the number of houses on the Hill has remained about the same,
as will be seen from a comparison of the Maps I and II, the one made for
Washington in 1778-80 and the other being a tracing of the map of the
Topographical Survey of the United States Government of recent date.

The extent of this population resident upon the Hill is shown in the
lists of persons whose names appear in Appendix A, which is a census of
the heads of families in the Meeting in the year 1761; added to which is
a list of names which appear in the minutes of the Meeting in years
immediately following. These lists show the growth of the population
under study, in the years from 1761 to 1780, for there are whole
families omitted from the list of 1761, who are named in the minutes in
succeeding years. An instance is that of Paul and Isaac Osborn, who came
from Rhode Island in 1760.[7]

As this list of members of the meeting shows the actual size of the
population resident upon the Hill in 1761, the other list published in
Appendix B, containing the names of those who traded at the Merritt
store in 1771, exhibits, with startling vividness, the importance of
Quaker Hill at that time. Little as the place is now, and geographically
remote and hard of access always, it was evidently in the years named a
center of a far-reaching country trade. This list is published in full,
exactly as the names appear on Daniel Merritt's ledger, to convey this
impression; and by contrast, the impression of the shrinkage in the
years since the railway changed the currents of trade. It is published
also as a basis of this study, being a numerical description, in the
rough, of the problem we are studying. And a third use which such a list
may serve is that of information to those interested in genealogy. It is
a veritable mine of information, suggestion, and even color, of the life
of that time--as indeed are the ancient ledgers, bound in calf, and kept
with exquisite care, by this colonial merchant. In these old records are
suggested, though not described, the lives of a hard-working, prosperous
population, filling the countryside, laying the foundations of fortunes
which are to-day enriching descendants. It was a community without an
idler, with trades and occupations so many as to be independent of other
communities, hopeful, abounding in credit, laying plans for generations
to come, and living bountifully, heartily from day to day.

Every item in these mercantile records is of interest and full of
suggestion, from the names of the negro slaves, who had accounts on the
books, to the products brought for sale by one customer after another,
by which they liquidated their accounts; from the "quart of rum" bought
by so many with every "trading," to the Greek Testament and Latin
Grammar bought by solid Thomas Taber, who wrote his name in real estate
by his thrift and force, if he did not write it in dead languages.

[7] Richard Osborn--A Reminiscence, by Margaret B. Monahan,
Quaker Hill Local History Series, No. VIII, p. 10.



The economic activity of the early Quaker Community was varied. All they
consumed they had to produce and manufacture. Though the stores sold
cane sugar, the farmers made of maple sap in the spring both sugar and
syrup, and in the fall they boiled down the juice of sweet apples to a
syrup, which served for "sweetness" in the ordinary needs of the

Every man was in some degree a farmer, in that each household cultivated
the soil. On every farm all wants had to be supplied from local
resources, so that mixed farming was the rule. The land which its modern
owners think unsuited to anything but grass, because it is such "heavy,
clay soil," was made in the 18th century to bear, in addition to the
grass for cattle and sheep, wheat, rye, oats and corn, flax, potatoes,
apples. Of whatever the farmer was to use he must produce the raw
material from the soil, and the manufacture of it must be within the

Two lists which come to us from early days cast light on the population
and occupations of the early period. One is the sheriff's list of
landowners in Dutchess County in 1740, on which is no name of any farmer
then resident on Quaker Hill. The other list is that of those who
claimed exemption from military duty in 1755; 38 are from Oblong and 21
from Beekman, many of them being Quakers resident on the Oblong. This
list is as follows:

Joshua Shearman, Beekman Prec'nt, shoemaker; Moses Shearman, Beekman
Prec'nt, laborer; Daniel Shearman, Beekman Prec'nt, laborer; Joseph
Doty, Beekman Prec'nt, blacksmith; John Wing, Beekman Prec'nt, farmer;
Zebulon Ferris (Oblong), Beekman Prec'nt, farmer; Joseph Smith, son of
Rich'd, Beekman Prec'nt, laborer; Robert Whiteley, Beekman Prec'nt,
farmer; Elijah Doty, Oblong House, carpenter; Philip Allen, Oblong,
weaver; Richard Smith, Oblong, farmer; James Aiken, Oblong, blacksmith;
Abrah'm Chase, son of Henry, Oblong, farmer; David Hoeg, Oblong, ----;
John Hoeg, Oblong, farmer; Jonathan Hoeg, Oblong, blacksmith; Amos Hoeg,
son of John, Oblong, laborer; William Hoeg, son of David, Oblong,
farmer; John Hoeg, son of John, Oblong, farmer; Ezekiel Hoeg, Oblong,
laborer; Judah Smith, Oblong, tailor; Matthew Wing, Oblong, ----;
Timothy Dakin, Oblong, farmer; Jonathan Dakin, Oblong, laborer; Samuel
Russell, Oblong, laborer; John Fish, Oblong, farmer; Reed Ferris,
Oblong, shoemaker; Benjamin Ferris, Junr., Oblong, laborer; Joseph Akin,
Oblong, blacksmith; Israel Howland, Oblong, farmer; Elisha Akin, Oblong,
farmer; Isaac Haviland, Oblong, blacksmith; Nathan Soule, son of George,
Oblong, farmer; James Birdsall, Oblong, laborer; Daniel Chase, Oblong,
farmer; Silas Mossher, Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; William Mosher,
Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; Silvester Richmond, Oswego in Beekman
Prec't, farmer; Jesse Irish, Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; David
Irish, Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; William Irish, Oswego in
Beekman Prec't, farmer; Josiah Bull, Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer;
Josiah Bull, Junr., Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; Allen Moore,
Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; Andrew Moore, Oswego in Beekman
Prec't, farmer; William Gifford, Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer;
Nathaniel Yeomans, Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; Eliab Yeomans,
Oswego in Beekman Prec't, farmer; William Parks, Oswego in Beekman
Prec't, farmer.

This list mentions six occupations: the farmer, blacksmith, tailor,
shoemaker, carpenter and laborer. With these six a frontier community
could live, for every man of them was a potential butcher, tanner,
trader. There is record of others in later years, when the communal life
had become differentiated. There were at various times in the Quaker
century stores at four places on the Hill. The Merritt store, at Site
28, descended to the sons of Daniel Merritt, and finally to James Craft.
There was a store in Deuell Hollow, kept by Benjamin and Silas Deuell
for several years. There is extant one bill of merchandise purchased by
them of Edward and William Laight, merchants of New York, the amount
being £200 and the date Feb. 25, 1785. The Akin stores at Sites 47 and
46, were kept by Daniel and Albro Akin, and the store at Site 53, by
John Toffey. These stores during the period of the Quaker community were
in trade largely by barter, taking all the commodities the farmer had
beyond his immediate use, and selling sugar, coffee, cloth and other
commodities which after 1815, as will be shown later, rapidly increased
in number and in quantity. The use of money increased at the same
period. The phrase still lingers in Quaker Hill speech: "I am going to
the store to do some trading," though the milk farmer has engaged in no
barter for fifty years.

In the culminating period of the Quaker Community, which followed the
Revolutionary War, the following were some of the occupations practiced
on the Hill, the record or remembrance of which is preserved:[8]

Abram Thomas was a blacksmith, at Site 14,[9] and is said to have made
the nails used in building the Meeting House. George Kirby, at Site
99-1/2, had a blacksmith shop; there was another at Site x100, now
abandoned on Burch Hill, kept by Joel Winter Church, where Washington's
charger was shod, and the bill was paid at the close of the war.

But the most notable smithy was at Site 41, where now stands one of the
oldest houses on the Hill. Here Davis Marsh wrought in iron, and the
sound of his trip-hammer audible for miles smote its own remembered
impression upon the ears of those ancient generations. Doubtless the
favored location of Marsh's shop in the neighborhood most central, as is
shown in Chapter III, Part III, gave it greater use. There was at one
time a forge in the Glen at Site 66, to which magnetic ore was hauled
from Brewster to be worked.

A "smith shop" is also noted on Erskine's map for Washington in 1778 at
Site x111. The most important manufacturing business of the community,
however, was the wagon-worker's shop at Site 45, kept by Hiram Sherman.
Under the general title of wagon maker he manufactured all movables in
wood and iron, from fancy wagons to coffins.

Other trades were of increasing variety as the century of isolation
proceeded. Shoemakers went from house to house to make shoes for the
family, of the leather from the backs of the farmer's own cattle, tanned
on the farm or not far away. Reed Ferris was a shoemaker, in whose
residence at Site 99 Washington was entertained in September, 1778,
until he took up Headquarters at John Kane's. Stephen Riggs was a
shoemaker. Three tanneries were maintained on the Hill in the bloom of
the Quaker community by Ransom Aldrich about Site 13; Amos Asborn, at
Site x21, who also made pottery there; and Isaac Ingersoll, at Site 134.

Albro Akin had a sawmill in the Glen, and a gristmill was also located
there in an early period. William Taber had a gristmill and also a cloth
mill, consisting of carding machine, fulling mill, and apparatus for
pressing, coloring and dressing cloth. John Toffey, at Site 53, and
Joseph Seeley, at Site 15, and some of the Arnolds, near Site 12, were
hatters. Jephtha Sabin, at Site 74, and Joseph Hungerford were saddlers
and harnessmakers.

Every farmer and indeed every householder raised hogs. Pork was salted,
as it is to-day, for winter use, in barrels of brine. Hogs also were
extensively raised and butchered for market, at a year and a half old,
the meat being taken to Poughkeepsie by wagon, and thence to New York.
Many who raised more pork than their own use demanded exchanged it at
the stores. Fields of peas were raised to feed the hogs.

Sheep also were raised for their wool; their meat afforded an acceptable
variety in farmer's fare and their hides had many uses. David Irish,
Daniel and David Merritt, Jonathan A. Taber and George P. Taber were
farmers whose product of wool was notably fine and abundant. Jonathan
Akin Taber "kept about eleven hundred sheep, some merino and some

Butter and cheese making were an important part of the business and
income of the farmer's family, the butter being packed and sent weekly
to the Hudson River boats for New York markets, or to Bridgeport or New
Haven--a two-days' journey in either case. The cheese was ripened, or
cured, being rubbed and turned every day, and kept until the dealers
came around to inspect and purchase. On every farm was kept a flock of
geese, which were picked once in six weeks to keep up the supply of
feather beds and to furnish the requisite number for the outfit of each
daughter of the family.

In the year 1767, Oblong Meeting took action which resulted, after seven
years of agitation, in the clear declaration by the Yearly Meeting of
New York, earliest of such acts, in favor of the freeing of slaves. This
was one hundred years before the Emancipation Proclamation.

Wilson's "Rise and Fall of the Slave Power in America" says that
"Members of the Society of Friends took the lead in the opposition to
slavery." There had been action taken in 1688 by a small body of
Germantown Quakers, in the form of a petition to their Yearly Meeting
against "buying, selling and holding men in slavery." But to this the
Yearly Meeting, after eight years of delay, replied only that "the
members should discourage the introduction of slavery, and be careful of
the moral and intellectual training of such as they held in servitude."

Meantime the Quaker Meetings on Long Island, in New York and
Philadelphia took action recognizing slavery, with only a gradual
tendency to regard the institution of slavery with disfavor. Now the
time had come for putting the denomination in array against the

There was a preacher of the Quakers who traveled much from 1746 to 1767
through the colonies, proclaiming that "the practice of continuing
slavery is not right;" and that "liberty is the natural right equally of
all men." In the last year of his propaganda occurred the event notable
in local history. This was thirteen years before the action of the State
of Pennsylvania, which initiated the lawmaking for emancipation among
the northern colonies. It was "twenty years before Wilberforce took the
first step in England against the slave-trade." The record of this
action is as follows:

"At a (Yearly) Meeting at the Meeting House at Flushing the 30th day of
the 5th month, 1767, a Querie from the Quarterly Meeting of the Oblong
in Relation to buying and Selling Negroes was Read in this meeting and
it was concluded to be left for consideration on the minds of friends
until the Next Yearly Meeting. The Query is as follows: It is not
consistent with Christianity to buy and Sell our Fellowmen for Slaves
during their Lives, & their Posterities after them, then whether it is
consistent with a Christian Spirit to keep those in Slavery that we have
already in possession by Purchase, Gift or any otherways."

The year after, not without due hesitation, a committee was appointed
which "drew an Essay on that subject which was read and approved and is
as follows: We are of the mind that it is not convenient (considering
the circumstances of things amongst us) to give an Answer to this
Querie, at least at this time, as the answering of it in direct terms
manifestly tends to cause divisions and may Introduce heart burnings and
Strife amongst us, which ought to be Avoided, and Charity exercised, and
persuasive methods pursued and that which makes for peace. We are
however fully of the mind that Negroes as Rational Creatures are by
nature born free, and where the way opens liberty ought to be extended
to them, and they not held in Bondage for Self ends. But to turn them
out at large Indiscriminately--which seems to be the tendency of the
Querie, will, we Apprehend, be attended with great Inconveniency, as
some are too young and some too old to obtain a livelihood for

Here, then, is the first action in a legislative body in New York State,
upon the freeing of slaves. The "Querie from Oblong" had secured a clear
deliverance in favor of the essential right of the negro as a man, in
favor of his being freed "where the way opened," and against the holding
of man for the service of another. The only hesitation of the meeting
was frankly stated; emancipation was not to be pushed to the point of
division among Christians, and was not to be accomplished to the
impoverishment of the negro.

Yet if this action seems to any one like "trimming," it was followed by
other deliverances increasingly clear and emphatic. Three years later
Friends were forbidden to sell their slaves, except under conditions
controlled by the Meeting. Throughout the communities of Friends the
agitation was being carried on, and the meetings were anxious to purge
themselves of the evil.

Finally in 1775 came the clear utterance of the Yearly Meeting in favor
of emancipation without conditions: "it being our solid judgment that
all in profession with us who hold Negroes ought to restore to them
their natural right to liberty as soon as they arrive at a suitable age
for freedom." At this meeting the Oblong was represented by Joseph
Irish, Abner Hoag and Paul Osborn.

It only remains to picture the rest of the process by which slavery was
purged away on Quaker Hill. In 1775 the practice of buying and selling
slaves had come to an end, and no public abuse was noted by the Meeting
in the treatment accorded to slaves by their masters. The next year
there was but one slave owned by a member of the Meeting; and the day he
was freed in the fall of 1777 was counted by the Meeting so notable that
the clerk was directed to make a minute of the event. The owner had been
Samuel Field, and the slave was called Philips. Another manumission in
1779 is recorded, but it was doubtless in the case of a new resident of
the Hill, for it is recorded without signs of the joy exhibited in the
freedom of Philips.

In the years 1782-3 the final act in emancipating the local slaves was
taken, in the investigation by a committee of the Meeting into the
condition of the freed slaves, and the obligations of their old masters
to them. It was not very cordially received at first, but in the third
year of the life and labors of the committee it was reported by them
that "the negroes appear to be satisfied without further settlement." So
the first American community to free herself from slavery required but
sixteen years of agitation fully to complete the process.

[8] See "Some Glimpses of the Past," by Alicia Hopkins Taber,
1906; Quaker Hill Series.

[9] See Map II.



The Quaker community had little time for amusements, and less patience.
The discipline of the Meeting levelled its guns at the play spirit, and
for a century men were threatened, visited, disowned if necessary, for
"going to frollicks," and "going to places of amusement." The Meeting
House records leave no room for doubt as to the opinion held by the
Society of Friends upon the matter of play.

An account is given elsewhere of the discipline of the Meeting in its
struggle against immorality and "frollicking." The following quotation
from James Woods' "The Purchase Meeting," vividly depicts the confused
elements of the social life of that time: "On great occasions such as
the holding of a Quarterly Meeting, the population turned out _en
masse_. Piety and worldliness both observed the day. The latter class
gathered about the meeting house, had wrestling matches and various
athletic sports in the neighboring fields, and horse races on the
adjacent roads. The meetings regularly appointed committees as a police
force to keep order about the meeting house during the time of worship
and business."

The stories told by old Quaker Hill residents of the gatherings about
the meeting house, even on First Day, or Sunday, confirm the above
quotation. The field opposite the meeting house, for years after 1769,
when the earliest meeting house was moved away from that site, was used
as a burial ground, and later, no headstones being placed in those early
days, as a space for tethering horses. An old resident tells me that
crowds of men were always about the meeting house before and after
meeting, and even during meeting, and that in later years the resident
of Site No. 32, who owned valuable horses, used to exhibit a blooded
stallion on a tether, leading him up and down to the admiration of the
horse-owners present, and to their probable interest.

These conditions seem to have continued through that whole century. The
play spirit had no permitted or authorized occasions. It had to exercise
itself with the other instincts, in the common gatherings. It was, as
far as we can see, a time of asceticism. Men were forbidden rather than
invited, in those days.

The Meeting not only provided no play opportunities, but it forbade the
attendance of its members upon the "frollicks," which then were held, as
nowadays they are held, in the country side. A gathering with plenty to
eat, and in those days a free indulgence in drink on the part of the
men, with music of the fiddler, and dancing, this was a "frollick"--that
horror of the meeting house elders. Indeed, it was of incidental moral
detriment; for it was outlawed amusement, and being under the ban, was
controlled by men beyond the influence or control of the meeting. The
young people of the Quaker families, and sometimes their elders, yielded
to the fascinations of these gatherings. The unwonted excitement of
meeting, the sound of music, playing upon the capacity for motor
reactions in a people living and laboring outdoors, inflamed beyond
control by rum and hard cider, soon led to lively, impulsive activities
and physical exertions, both in immoderate excess and in disregard of
all the inhibitions of tradition and of conscience. That there was a
close relation of these "frollicks" with the sexual immorality of the
period is probable.

Of more concern to us here is the observation, which is made with
caution, that the attitude of the community to amusements was not
conducive to moral betterment, because amusement was not specialized.
The repression of the play spirit, offering it no occasions,
recognizing no times and places as appropriate for it, disturbed the
equilibrium of life, forced the normal animal spirits of the population
to impulsive and explosive expressions and deprived them of the
regulative control of the community.

It is probable that that early period had modes of amusement the record
of which is wholly lost. There are few sources existing to inform us of
the amusements of laboring classes. Hints occur in such records as that
of the sale of powder and shot, of fishhooks and a quart of rum, at the
Merritt store, in 1771, to the Vaughns. Seven years later the Vaughns
were the Tory "cowboys," who robbed the defenceless neighborhood, until
their leader was killed by Captain Pearce, during the Revolution.

It is probable that then the community wore the aspect which now it
wears, of industry without play; and that members went elsewhere for
their amusement, the acknowledged leaders in which were resident in
other neighborhoods and communities.

The recreation of the body of working population of the Hill was
incidental to the religious assemblies. In these meetings they took an
intense and a very human pleasure. Their solitary, outdoor labor was
performed in an intense atmosphere of communal interaction. He who
raised hogs was to sell them, not to a distant market, but to Daniel
Merritt, or John Toffey, the storekeepers. He who made shoes went from
house to house, full of news, always talking, always hearing. He who
wove heard not his creaking loom, but the voice of the storekeeper or of
the neighbor to whom he would sell. The cheeses a woman pressed and
wiped in a morning were to be sold, not far away to persons unseen, but
to neighbors known, whose tastes were nicely ascertained and regarded.

The result was that meetings on First Day and Fourth Day were times of
intense pleasure, occasions of all-around interest: not mere business
interest, but incidentally a large satisfaction of the play instinct,
especially for the working and mature persons. The young, too, had their
happiness and enjoyment of one another in a multitude of ways, in
addition to those boisterous games described above by Mr. James Wood.
Their intense friendships and lively enterprises were probably not so
easy to confine to the bounds of sober, staid meetings, but no less did
their merry good spirits fill those assemblies. The galleries of the old
Meeting House were built in 1800 for the young, who were expected to sit
there during meeting. The wooden curtains between the "men's part" and
the "women's part" are especially thorough in their exclusion of even an
eyeshot from one side to the other.



In the Introduction to Professor Carver's "Sociology and Social
Progress" is a passage of great significance to one who would understand
Quaker Hill, or indeed any community, especially if it be religiously
organized. The writer refers to: "a most important psychic factor,
namely the power of idealization. This may be defined, not very
accurately, as the power of _making believe_, a factor which
sociologists have scarcely appreciated as yet. We have such popular
expressions as 'making a virtue of necessity,' which indicates that
there is a certain popular appreciation of the real significance of this
power, but we have very little in the way of a scientific appreciation
of it.

"One of the greatest resources of the human mind is its ability to
persuade itself that what is necessary is noble or dignified or
honorable or pleasant. For example, the greater part of the human race
has been found to live under conditions of almost incessant warfare. War
being a necessity from which there was no escape, it was a great
advantage to be able to glorify it, to persuade ourselves that it was a
noble calling--in other words, a good in itself.

"Another example is found in the case of work. Work is a necessity as
imperious as war ever was. Looked at frankly and truthfully, work is a
disagreeable necessity and not a good in itself. Yet by persuading
ourselves that work is a blessing, that it is dignified and honorable,
our willingness to work is materially increased, and therefore the
process of adaptation is facilitated--in other words, progress is
accelerated. Among the most effective agencies for the promotion of
progress, therefore, must be included those which stimulate this power
of idealization. In short, he who in any age helps to idealize those
factors and forces upon which the progress of his age depends, is
perhaps the most useful man, the most powerful agent in the promotion of
human well-being, even though from the strictly realistic point of view
he only succeeds in making things appear other than they really are.
From the sociologist's point of view this is the mission of art and
preaching of all kinds."

The quotation from Professor Carver bears the impression of
incompleteness, or rather of suggestiveness. If "making a virtue of
necessity" is idealization, is not symbolism also a form of "make
believe." If the "ability to persuade oneself that what is necessary is
noble or dignified or honorable or pleasant," is exhibited on Quaker
Hill as a "most important psychic factor," so is also the idealization
of the commonplace the "making believe" that peace and plainness, that
simple, old-fashioned dress, and seventeenth century forms of speech are
spiritual and are serviceable to the believing mind. The power of
idealization is nowhere exhibited as a social force more clearly than in
a Quaker community. Professor Carver's word, "make believe," is most
accurate. Quakers act with all sincerity the drama of life, using
costume and artificial speech, and attaching to all conduct peculiar
mannerisms; casting over all action a special veil of complacent
serenity; all which are parts in their realization of the ideal of life.
Their fundamental principle is that the divine spirit dwells and acts in
the heart of every man; not in a chosen few, not in the elect only, but
in all hearts. Quaker Hill to this day acts this out, in that every
person in the community is known, thought upon, reckoned and estimated
by every other. Towns on either side have a neglected population area,
but Quaker Hill has none. Pawling in its other neighborhoods has
forgotten roads, despised cabins, in which dwell persons for whom nobody
cares, drunkards, ill-doers, whom others forget and ignore. Quaker Hill
ignores no one. There are, indeed, rich and poor, but the former employ
the latter, know their state, enjoy their peculiarities, relish their
humor. It has apparently always been so. Elsewhere I have described the
measures taken by popular subscription to replace the losses suffered by
the humbler members of the community, in the tools of life (see Chapter
VII). It need not be said that the poorer members bear the rich in mind.
Every person resident on the Hill has come to partake in this sense of
the community, this practice of new Quakerism. No one is out of sight
and yet there is no dream of equality behind this communal sense. It is
as far from a communistic, as from a charitable state of mind. It is the
result of years of belief in common men and common things.

This "make believe" that commonplace things are the spiritual things was
a corollary of George Fox's life as much as of his doctrine. He opposed
pomp and ritual, salaried priests, ordinations and consecrations; he
disbelieved in "the imposition of hands." His followers therefore went
so far as to find in plainness a new sanctity. They adapted at once the
"plain garb" of the period of William Penn and Robert Barclay, and the
generations of men who followed felt themselves morally bettered by a
drab coat and breeches, a white neck-cloth, and a broad-brimmed brown
hat; the women by dresses of simple lines, low tones of color, bonnets
of peculiar shape, shielding the eyes on either side.

Of course in time this exceptional garb by its uniqueness defeated the
very desire George Fox had for "plainness." It was not commonplace but
extraordinary. Roby Osborn's garb is thus described by her biographer:
"Her wedding gown was a thick, lustreless silk, of a delightful
yellowish olive, her bonnet white. Beneath it her dark hair was smoothly
banded, and from its demure shelter her eyes looked gravely out. Her
vest was a fine tawny brown, of a sprigged pattern, both gown and vest
as artistically harmonious as the product of an Eastern loom. Pieces of
both were sewn into a patchwork quilt, now a family heirloom."[10]

For more than a century now "plainness in dress" has been extravagance
in dress. A proper Quaker hat for man or woman costs twice or thrice
what plain people of the same station in life would pay. But be it so.
In its day, which is now gone--for only one person now wears "plain
dress" on Quaker Hill--it was a true expression of the "make believe" of
sanctity in plainness. The quiet colors, the prescribed unworldliness
involved a daily discipline, and infused into the wearer an emotional
experience which mere economy and real commonness would never so
continuously have effected.

The "plain speech" has the same effect. It is part of the same dramatic
celebration of an ideal. It is a use of quaint and antique forms, not
grammatically correct nor scriptural, in which "thee" takes the place of
"thou" and you in the singular, both in the nominative and objective
cases. It is not used with the forms of the verb of solemn style, but
with common forms, as "thee has" instead of "thou hast." Another element
of the "plain speech" is the use of such terms as "farewell" for "good
day"--which is declared to be untruthful on bad days! The Quakers also
address one another by their first names, and the old-fashioned Friends
addressed everybody so, refusing to use such titles as "Mr.," "Mrs.," or

Of late years the younger members of the Meeting, while maintaining
their standing there, have used with persons not in the Meeting the
ordinary forms of speech, as they have refused to assume the Quaker
plain garb. With fellow-Quakers and with members of their own families
they say "thee."

Before the period of the mixed community this power of idealization, of
"making believe," had wrought its greatest effects, but it still has
full course and power without the highest direction. The minds of the
residents of the Hill are very suggestible; but the persons who have the
power to implant the suggestion are no longer inspired as of old, with a
sublime and unearthly ideal. They are only animated with an economic
one. But the result is the same. It is social, rather than religious. It
was one thing for the early Friends to cement together a community
through the feeling that in every man was the Spirit of God. A wonderful
appetite was that for the assimilation of new members coming into the
community. It was a doctrine that made all the children birthright
members of the Meeting and so of the community.

But in our later time, between 1895 and 1905, this power of "making
believe" had suffered the strain of a division of the meeting. It was
harder to believe that the Spirit of God was in all men, when half the
community was set off as "unorthodox." It had suffered the strain of
seeing the wide social difference caused by money. Yet it bravely played
the game. Children are not more adapt at "making believe" than were
these old Friends. They deceived even themselves; and their "pretending"
assimilated into the communal life every newcomer. For it created
underneath all differences a sense of oneness; it kept alive, in all
divisions, many of the operations of unity. It compelled strangers and
doctrinal enemies to "make believe" to be friends.

I find it difficult to describe this elusive force of the communal
spirit in the place, just as the communal character of the place is
itself evanescent, while always powerful. I know clearly only this, that
it proceeded, and still on Quaker Hill proceeds from the old religious
inheritance, and from the present religious character of the place; that
it tends directly to the creation of the community of all men, of all
different groups, and that it is ready at hand at all time, to be
called to the assistance of anyone who knows how to appeal to that
communal unity; and that it is a power of idealization, meaning by that
"a power of making believe." In this power, I recognize this community
as being more expert and better versed than any I have ever known.

The dramatic expression of an ideal has had great social power. Upon the
casual observer or visitor it has wrought with the effect of a charm to
impress upon them in a subtle way the ideal of Quakerism. Expressed in
words, it would have no interest: acted out so quaintly, it awakens
admiration, interest, and imitation, not of the forms, but always in
some degree of the substance of the Quaker ideal.

Thus the Quaker ideal has given authority to the Friends, especially to
the older and more conservative of them; has furnished a subtle
machinery for assimilating new members into the community and thus has
been an organizing power.

[10] "Richard Osborn--a Reminiscence," by Margaret B. Monahan;
Quaker Hill Series, 1903.



From the first the members found themselves subjected to a clear, simple
standard of morals. Its dominion was unbroken for one hundred years, and
came to an end with the Division of the Meeting; though that event was a
result as much as a cause of its termination. For one hundred years a
local ethical code prevailed. While they lived apart the Quakers in
their community life rejoiced in the unbroken sway of a communal code of
morals, the obedience to which made for survival and economic success.
When, with better roads to Poughkeepsie and to Fredericksburgh,
newcomers began to invade the community; when in 1849 the railroad came
to the neighborhood, immersing the Quakers in the world economy, the
Quaker code was insufficient, retarded rather than assisted survival,
and rather forbade than encouraged success. It therefore lost its force.
Only in a few individuals has it survived.

The residents of the Hill, from their earliest settlement in 1728 to the
time of the Division in 1828, knew no other government than that of the
Meeting. They accepted no other authority, hoped for public good through
no other agency, even read no other literature, than that of the Quaker
Monthly Meeting of the Oblong. The religious Meeting House was also the
City Hall, State House, and Legislature for the patriotism, as it was
the focus of the worship and doctrinal activity of this population. This
cannot be stated too strongly, for there was no limit to its effect. It
explains many things otherwise diverse and unexplained.

During all the periods of war the Quakers showed their separateness by
refusing to pay taxes, lest they contribute to the support of armies. In
the Revolution, the Meeting exercised unflinching discipline, for the
purpose of keeping members out of the patriot armies, and punished with
equal vigor those who paid for the privilege of exemption from military
duty and those who enlisted in the ranks. In every act of the discipline
of the Quaker Community appears the purpose of the Meeting, namely, to
keep its members to itself and away from all other moral and spiritual
control. This will appear in definite illustrations below.

The standard of morals which the Meeting thus upheld with jealous care
was a simple one, and logically derived from the distinctive doctrine of
the Society of Friends. That the Spirit of God dwells in every man was
their belief,[11] and from 1650, when Fox was called "a Quaker" before
Justice Bennett at Derby, England, to the Division in 1830, they applied
this doctrine in practical, rather than in metaphysical ways. They were
a moral, rather than a theological people. It will appear in this
chapter that only when the moral grip of the Meeting was broken in a
division did doctrinal questions come to discussion on the Hill.

The moral bearing of the one cardinal doctrine of Quakerism is well
expressed in the following quotation from a Friend qualified to speak
with authority:

"The Friends have been consistent in all their peculiarities with one
central principle, the presence and inspiration of the Divine Spirit in
the human soul. This has been the reason for their opposition to
slavery. They felt, You cannot hold in slavery GOD! And God is in this
black man's life, therefore you cannot enslave God in him. So you must
not inflict capital punishment upon this man in whom is God.

"The same argument dignified woman, who was made the equal of man. The
same argument applies to the impossibility of war. You cannot think of
God fighting against God. The Quaker had no sentimental idea of
suffering; but he believed that you cannot take life, in which is God.

"The same argument applied to weights and measures; the Quakers early
demanded that they be officially sealed. So they believed in only one
standard of truth, rather than one for conversation and one for a court
of justice. No oaths were necessary for those who spoke for God all the

In this belief one sees the principle on which were selected the reforms
in which the Quaker Preacher was interested. "He appears to have had ...
his mind strongly influenced to an active protest against the evils of
slavery, war, capital punishment and intemperance."[13] Each of these
reforms was inspired by reverence for human life, which was thought to
be desecrated or abused.

This simple code expressed itself in abstinence from practices believed
to defile the body. Members of the Meeting early adopted a strict rule
against the use of intoxicating liquors. It is said of the ancestors of
Richard Osborn that: "Of these six generations not a man has ever been
known to use spirituous liquors, or tobacco, to indulge in profanity, or
to be guilty of a dishonest action."[14]

A sense of personal degradation underlay their opposition to poverty
among members. There is record of an order of the Meeting, in 1775, for
the purchase of a cow "to loan to Joseph ----." The practice thus early
observed has since then been unbroken. The member of the community who
comes to want is at this day taken care of by popular subscription.
Through the early century the Meeting accomplished this end, sometimes
by formal, sometimes by informal methods. In the later years of the
nineteenth century it was accomplished by special funds to which
everybody gave. Thus simply was poverty forestalled. The family assisted
soon came to self-support again. No debt was incurred, and no obligation
remained to be discharged; but every member of the Meeting and of the
community felt obliged to give and was glad to give to this anti-poverty
fund. The basis of it seems to have been respect for human embodiments
of the Divine Spirit.

This ideal of personality, divinely indwelt, created a sense of personal
duty, even in opposition to all men. In the years of anti-slavery
agitation David Irish and his sister "made their protest against slavery
by abstaining as far as possible from slave-made products; and together
they made maple, to take the place of cane sugar, and used nothing but
linen and woolen clothing (largely homespun)."[15] This later Quaker,
possessed of the spirit of the community of his fathers, shows his inner
conflict with the ideals of a competitive age in the expression "so far
as possible." It was not as practicable in 1855 to "abstain from
slave-made products," as it would have been in the year 1755.

The hospitality of the neighborhood expressed this simple code. It was
the custom to entertain the traveler in any house to which he might
come. It would have been wrong to exclude him; he was welcomed with a
dignified and formal respect by these old Friends, because entertainment
of guests in those days was a vital reality, as well as a religious
practice. These settlers in the wild forests believed that in every
wayfarer was a divine voice, a possible message from heaven. They also
treated every traveler as a possible object of their "preachments," and
spared not to "testify" to him of their peculiar beliefs and "leadings."
It was the Friends' method of propagating their gospel to send men and
women on journeys, without pay, to distant states and provinces. This
religious touring was not peculiar to them, but it was made by them an
official agency of great power in evangelizing the Colonies.

As an itinerant Friend, Woolman, the anti-slavery apostle, came to the
Hill in 176-. So Paul Osborn joined himself to a party of Friends
"travelling on truth's account," and with them visited the Carolinas, in
the years before the Revolution. The same pioneer left in his will
directions for the entertainment of such travellers upon his estate

This religious itinerating was a part of the economic life of those days
as well; for the Friends never separated the one from the other.
Wherever they went they "testified," and to every place they came with
shrewd appreciation of its value as a place of settlement. Says James
Wood: "Each Quaker home as it was settled became a resting-place for
those who followed, for it was a cardinal principle of Quaker
hospitality to keep open house for all fellow-members, under all

The development of the hospitality that was a part of the religion of
the Quakers would be itself a sufficient study. It has furnished some of
the most interesting chapters of the history of the Hill. It is now
completely transformed, through the pressure of competitive economic
life; and, with undiminished activities, has become a means of revenue
in "the keeping of boarders." Seven of the old Quaker homes, in the
period of the Mixed Community, took on the aspect of small hotels. For
this business the Quakers have a preparation in their history and
traditions. They have an inbred genius for hospitality. They have also a
thrift and capacity for "management" which have made their efforts
successful. One is impressed in their houses by a union of abundance
with economy, impossible to imitate.

Like other American pioneer neighborhoods, of a religious type, the
Quaker community at Oblong had a history in the matter of sexual
morality. The relations of the sexes offered to the Friends a field in
which their favorite doctrine of the indwelling divine spirit produced
moral harvests. The records of Oblong Meeting are filled with cases of
moral discipline. There is scarcely a meeting in whose minutes some case
is not mentioned, either its initial, intermediate or final stages. No
family was exempt from this experience. The best families furnished the
culprits as often as they supplied the committees to investigate and to

The regular method of procedure in marriage will best exhibit the moral
standards of the time. When a couple would marry, they indicated to the
Meeting their intention; and a committee was at once appointed to
investigate their "clearness." That is, these two must be free of other
engagements, and must be free of debt or other incumbrance of such sort
as would render marriage impossible or unadvisable. At the next monthly
meeting the report of the committee advanced the case one stage; and if
they were found "clear of all others," another committee was appointed
"to see that the marriage was orderly performed."

The parties on the day set appeared before the Meeting,[18] and in its
regular course, stood up and said the words of mutual agreement which
made them man and wife. A certificate was used, and to it the guests
signed their names. But no minister had official part in the ceremony.
It was their belief, to which they adhered with logical strictness, that
the divine spirit in each of the parties to a marriage made it sacred,
and that in marrying they spoke the will of the Spirit.

Entire continence was expected of every unmarried person, and the
strictest marital faithfulness of man and wife, because of the
sacredness of personal life. But in a pioneer society, through those
rough early decades, when for long times war was disturbing the serenity
of social life, the conduct of men and women, not mindful of propriety,
was determined by the strong, masterful passions of an out of door
people. Besides, the government of the Meeting was contrary to the
general opinion of the countryside, and the Meeting House members were
immersed in a population whose standards were looser, as well as
sanctioned by authorities not recognized by the Meeting. The result was
that in the first century of the Hill, 1728-1828, there were many
instances of sexual immorality, many accusations of married persons
untrue to their vows, and a resulting attention of the whole community
to this theme which we do not know to-day. Frankness of discussion of
these matters prevailed. The punishments inflicted, the public
confessions demanded, the condemnation of specific and detailed offences
read from the steps of the Meeting Houses, were all as far from present
day approval as the offences themselves from modern experience. The
writer is sure that, comparing the records of the Quaker Community with
his own knowledge of the annals of the Mixed Community, there were more
offences of this kind considered by the Monthly Meeting of Oblong in any
one year, 1728-1828, than were publicly known in a population of the
same extent in the ten years 1890-1900. The commonest of these offences
were simple cases of illicit relations between unmarried persons, or
between persons, one of whom was married; the offence often being
associated in the minds of the accusers with "going to frollicks." In
these, as in all cases, the Meeting received the complaint and appointed
a committee to investigate and to labor with the accused. On receiving
its report, if guilt was evidenced, the Meeting pressed the matter,
often increasing the size of the committee. It always demanded an
expression of repentance, and the restoration of right conduct, without
which no satisfaction was to be had. If the accused persons, being found
guilty, did not repent, they were in the end "disowned." The disownment
by the Meeting was a serious penalty. It diminished a man's business
opportunities, it shut the door of social life to him, and it
effectually forbade his marriage within the Meeting.

Its power is shown in a number of cases recorded in the minutes, in
which the ban of the Meeting had been laid upon some one, who was
compelled later to come to the Meeting, make a tardy acknowledgement,
and be restored, before he could proceed freely in some of the communal
activities controlled by the Meeting. Often the committee appointed by
the Meeting reported that they were not satisfied with the repentance
offered, seeing in it evidently more of policy than penitence. Usually
they received, in later visitations of the accused, sufficient tokens
of submission, and the Meeting was satisfied; but not always.

The most curious instance of the working out of this control exercised
by the Meeting, especially over the sexual relations, is in the marriage
of Joseph ---- with Elizabeth ----. The first act in the little drama
was the formal written statement of Joseph that he was sorry for "having
been familiar with his wife before his marriage to her." The Monthly
Meeting appointed a committee, as usual, after making record of this
"acknowledgment." After a month the committee reported that they had
visited Joseph, and found his repentance sincere; and another committee
was appointed to draw up a testimony against his former misconduct, to
which Joseph was required to subscribe; and in a later month to hear it
read from the steps of the Preparative Meeting in the neighborhood where
he lived--or perhaps in that in which the offence was best known. After
this had all been done, with patient detail, and reported and recorded,
a further month elapsed, and then announcement was made at the Meeting
of the intention of Joseph and Elizabeth to marry. The reader is
astonished, thinking that Joseph has already evidenced his loyalty to
his wife. A closer re-reading of the stages of the incident shows that
the wife mentioned in the original offence was now dead; but that the
offence was not dead. Joseph had to be restored to the Meeting before he
could marry Elizabeth, who was very evidently a devoted member. To win
his new wife, he had to make acknowledgment of the offence which
preceded his former marriage.

This incident illustrates the whole attitude of that community toward
these moralities. They were thought to be defilements of the body, the
temple of God. No change of outward condition could eliminate the
offence, which must be wiped out by repentance, public acknowledgment
and formal restoration.

It is evident from the foregoing that the Meeting maintained control
over the community, at least of its own members, by possessing an
effective power to approve or to disapprove of the economic and the
marital condition of each individual.

The code of morals practiced in this community required strict business
honesty. The Quaker has moral discretion in economic affairs. He
"expects to get what he pays for, and he expects to give what he has
agreed." The honesty of "stroke-measure," by which bushels are topped
off, the faithful performance of contracts and payment of debts were
inculcated by the Meeting and enforced by its discipline.

This chapter may fitly close with a statement of the anathema of
Quakerism, pronounced many times in a year, during the century. The
offence selected shall be a moral one:

"Whereas, Jonathan Osgood hath had a right of membership among us, the
people called Quakers, but not taking heed to the dictates of truth,
hath so far deviated from the good order established among Friends as to
neglect attendance of our religious meetings for worship and discipline,
to deviate from the plain scripture language, and to refuse to settle
with his creditors, and pay his just debts; and hath shut himself up
concealed from the civil authorities, therefore for the clearing of
truth and our Religious Society we do testify against his misconduct,
and disown him, the said Jonathan Osgood, from being any longer a member
of our Society, until he shall from a true sight and sense of his
misconduct condemn the same to the satisfaction of the Meeting. Which
that he may is our desire for him. Signed, in and on behalf of Purchase
Monthly Meeting this th day of the th month."

The above wording except the name is taken from the minutes of Purchase
Meeting; and some of the offences mentioned in a few pages of those
minutes, for which men were disowned, or for acknowledgment pardoned
and restored, are the following: "deviating from plainness of speech and
apparel"--"not keeping to the plain scripture language;" "going to
Frollicks," "going to places of amusement," "attending a horserace;"
"frequenting a tavern, being frequently intoxicated with strong liquor;"
"placing his son out apprentice with one not of our Society;" "leaving
his habitation in a manner disagreeable to his friends;" "to use profane
language and carry a pistol, in an unbecoming manner;" "bearing arms;"
"to challenge a person to fight;" "to marry with a first cousin;" "to
keep company with a young woman not of our Society on account of
marriage;" "to be married by a magistrate;" "to marry with one not of
our Society before a hireling priest;" "to join principles and practice
with another society of people;" "to be guilty of fornication;" "to be
unchaste with her who is now my wife" (the person afterward married by
the accused). Oblong minutes: "to have bought a negro slave," "to have
bought a negro wench and to be familiar with her."

It was the operation of this code of morals, and of its ecclesiastical
checks and curbs, that made the Quaker Hill man and the Quaker Hill
sentiment what they are. And having done its work this code at the last
tended to weaken the Meeting, as it had strengthened the public
conscience. In talking recently with a sweet old lady past eighty, I
asked her, "Did you ever hear anyone disowned in meeting?" "No," she
never had, and "doubted if there had been many." Later, her daughter
said, "Why, Grandmother, you married out of meeting yourself!" Whereupon
I asked again, "Well, what did they do with you then?" "Oh," she
replied, not at all embarrassed, "they turned me out!"

"But what was the outcome of it all?" asks James Wood, in the closing
sentences of his monograph, "The Purchase Meeting." He continues: "As a
church the Quakers here missed their great opportunity. As settlers
came among them in increasing numbers, the Friends became solicitous to
preserve the strictest moral observance among their members. They
withdrew from contact and association with the world about them and
confined their religious influence and effort to themselves. The
strictest watch was maintained over the deportment of old and young.
Members were dismissed for comparatively slight offences. Immigration
further reduced their numbers. Hypercriticism produced disagreements
among themselves. Finally, doctrinal differences arose which resulted in
a disastrous separation into two bodies in 1828."

[11] Francis B. Gummere of Haverford college says of George
Fox, the founder of the Society of Friends: "The central point of his
doctrine is the direct responsibility of each soul to God, without
mediation of priest or form, because of the presence of the Holy Spirit
in the heart of every human being." Johnson's Universal Cyclopedia,

The following is authoritative for the Society: "We believe in no
principle of life, light or holiness, but the influence of the Holy
Spirit of God, bestowed on mankind, in various measures and degrees,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. It is the capacity to receive this
blessed influence, which, in an especial manner, gives man pre-eminence
above the beasts that perish; which distinguishes him, in every nation
and in every clime, as an object of the redeeming love of God; as a
being not only intelligent but responsible;..."--"A Declaration of Some
of the Fundamental Doctrines of Christian Truth, as held by the
Religious Society of Friends."

[12] Mr. James Wood, in an address at Quaker Hill Conference,

[13] "David Irish, A Memoir," by Mrs. Phoebe T. Wanzer.

[14] "Richard Osborn, a Reminiscence," by Margaret B. Monahan.

[15] "David Irish, A Memoir," by Mrs. Phoebe T. Wanzer.

[16] To "friends travelling on truth's account" the doors of
the old house always swung wide. Paul Osborn kept open house for "his
friends, the people called Quakers," during his lifetime, and his will
provides in the most minute and careful manner for his wife "the better
to qualifye her to keep a house of entertainment for friends." ... The
"littel meadow in lot 29" he gave to Isaac Osborn, that "he shall keep
well all horses of friends my wife shall send him;" and should Isaac
"neglect the injunctions herein enjoined," and cease to keep such house
of entertainment for friends then his right to certain legacies "shall
descend and revolve to them, him or her that shall truly fulfill them."
All his lands in the latter case Paul gives to the "Yearly Meeting for
Friends, the people called Quakers, of Philadelphia."--"Richard Osborn,
a Reminiscence," by Margaret B. Monahan.

[17] "The Bi-Centennial of the New York Yearly Meeting, An
Historical Sketch," by James Wood, 1895.

[18] "It was Wednesday, the day of the regular mid-week
meeting, and the house was crowded. The young people took their places
upon the facing seats, and the meeting began. Daniel Haviland was
minister and he spoke at length. Then, after a short pause, Richard
Osborn and Roby Hoag arose, and clasping hands, spoke alternately the
solemn sentences of the Friends' marriage ceremony, which have united
them for sixty years. Then was brought forth the marriage certificate,
fairly engrossed in the bridegroom's own hand, and many names of those
present were affixed, after which it was read aloud. This being done,
and kindly greetings offered, Richard and Roby Osborn drove back to
their home. The wedding was well furnished with guests, and four fat
turkeys graced the board that day."--"Richard Osborn, a Reminiscence,"
by Margaret B. Monahan. Quaker Hill Series.



Quaker Hill has been always a place of peace. The earliest settlers came
to make an asylum for the propagation of the principles of peace. I have
spoken elsewhere of their consistent belief and practice of this

The community always acted promptly in response to the known injury of
its members. The Quakers have a "Meeting of Sufferings," at which are
related and recorded the persecutions from which they suffer. This
community, which for one hundred years was Quaker, has always been
prompt to act "solidly and judiciously" in support of the injured. An
illustration is the riot in opposition to Surgeon Fallon, who in
January, 1779, was left here with convalescent soldiers in the Meeting
House. It is very interesting as showing the length to which men will go
in the interest of peace, even to the use of violence. It illustrates
also the fact that kindness to the sick and wounded, simply because they
are helpless and needy, is modern, a humanitarian not a dogmatic

To superior power the Quakers of this place have always submitted. Their
forefathers were loyalists in England, and they in America, till far
into the Revolution. But see the resolutions passed in April, 1778:

"The answering of the 14th Query Respecting the Defrauding of the King
of his dues is omitted by reason of the Difficulty of the times
therefore this meeting desires the Quarterly meeting to Consider whether
it would not be well to omit the answering that part of the Query in
future until the way may appear more Clear." This action was taken by
the meeting five months before the coming of Washington to the Hill,
immediately after the heroic winter of Valley Forge and just before the
British retreated from Philadelphia. An official body which could speak
of dues to the king at that time, after their country had been separated
from him for three years, surely represented a community in which the
great majority were Loyalists, and the disorderly and violent were

But the non-resistant character of the neighborhood, perched between the
Connecticut Yankees, who took ardent interest in the Revolution, and the
aggressive settlements of Pawling, Fredericksburgh and Beekman, rendered
the Hill at times an asylum, strange to say, of the most adventurous
forces. Whenever in Colonial days an adventurer or soldier sought a
peaceful region in which to recruit his forces, he thought upon Quaker
Hill; and in four memorable instances used the Hill as a place of safe
refuge. There no one would by force resist his enjoyment of a time for

The first instance of this is the so-called "Anti-Rent War," which in
1766 excited the inhabitants of Dutchess and Columbia Counties. Its
sources were in the land grants made by the Crown, and in the
independent character of the settlers in this state. The series of
disturbances so caused continued until well into the years of the
nineteenth century. They concern the local history only in one year,

The Anti-Rent War of 1766 is a forgotten event. But in that time it
aroused the Indians and the white settlers to revolt. Bodies of armed
men assembled, British troopers marched from Poughkeepsie to Quaker
Hill, to seize a leader of rebellion; and at the time of his trial at
Poughkeepsie in August, 1766, a company of regulars with three
field-pieces was brought up from New York.[19]

The prime cause of this insurrection was the granting of the land in
great areas at the beginning of the century to favored proprietors, so
that the actual settlers could not become owners but only tenants.
Fragments of such great estates remain in the hands of certain families
till our time. The ownership of Hammersley Lake by the family of that
name is an example. The exercise of authority by these monopolists of
natural opportunities drove the actual tillers of the soil, who had
given it its value, to desperation. I have shown that in 1740 no land
owners were enrolled on Quaker Hill, and that the list of its most
representative citizens in 1755 contained few landowners.[20] A further
cause of this conflict may have been that, in the year of the settlement
of the boundaries of the Oblong it was granted to one company by the
British Crown, and to another by the Colony of New York. This brought
the title of all the lands on the Oblong into dispute. Moreover,
boundaries were carelessly indicated and loosely described, a pile of
stones or a conspicuous tree serving for a landmark. All this worked
great confusion, for the settlement of which in a crude community courts
were ineffective.

Finally the popular discontent broke out to the north in armed refusal
of settlers to pay the rents exacted. The movement spread from Dutchess
to Columbia County. William Prendergast, who is said to have lived in a
house standing on the ground now part of the golf links in Pawling, was
the leader of the insurgents in this county. He assembled a band on
Quaker Hill so formidable that the grenadiers at Poughkeepsie waited for
reinforcements of two hundred troopers and two field pieces from New
York before proceeding against him. The sight of the red coats was
enough. Prendergast surrendered. But so great was the local excitement
that, to forestall an attempt to rescue, he was taken a prisoner to New
York. In July he was brought back for trial; and on the same boat with
the King's counsel, judges, lawyers and prisoner came a company of
soldiers to put down the continued disturbance in Columbia County.[21]

The trial occurred the first fortnight of August. Prendergast was
assisted in his defense by his wife, who made a strong impression on the
jury, proving that her husband, before the acts of which he was accused,
was "esteemed a sober, honest and industrious farmer, much beloved by
his neighbors, but stirred up to act as he did by one Munro, who is
absconded." So ardent was this woman advocate that the State's attorney
forgot himself and moved that she be excluded from the court room. The
motion was denied, and the mover of it emphatically rebuked. But there
was not lacking proof of the fact of treason, and Prendergast was
convicted and sentenced to be hanged in six weeks. Then this valiant
woman's energy and perseverance rose to their highest. She set off for
an audience with the Governor, Sir Henry Moore, Bart., and returned
about the first of September with a reprieve. Just in time she arrived,
for a company of fifty mounted men had ridden the whole length of the
county to rescue her husband from the jail. She convinced them of the
folly of such action as they proposed, and sent them home, while she
turned to the task of obtaining a pardon from the King. Here, too, she
was successful; for, six months later, George III, who required six
years to be subdued by a Washington, released her husband. They arrived
home amid great popular rejoicings.

William Prendergast and Mehitabel Wing, whose descendants settled later
about Chautauqua Lake, New York, were bound to the Quaker Community by
ties of marriage and of trade. William was not, so far as I can learn, a
member of the Meeting; but Mehitabel was a daughter of Jedidiah Wing,
whose family was devoted to the Society from 1744 until the "laying
down" of the Meeting in 1885. William Prendergast was, however, a member
of the community. His name heads an account in the ledgers of the
Merritt store, in 1771 and 1772, and his purchases indicate that he was
a substantial farmer whose trading center was Quaker Hill.[22]
Prendergast was an Irishman.

Before the Revolution he with his family and possessions, a caravan of
seventeen vehicles and thirty horses, emigrated westward, going as far
south as Kentucky, then north through Ohio and New York. A part of the
family company proceeded to Canada. His son James settled, with other
Prendergasts, on Chautauqua Lake, and became the founder of Jamestown,
where his family, now extinct there, has given the city a library. When
William Prendergast and Mehitabel Wing, his resolute wife, died, is not
known. None of that name is later found on or near Quaker Hill.

The motive of their hegira appears to have been chagrin and a sense of
humiliation at the sentence of death pronounced upon the head of the
family. In the Prendergast Library at Jamestown is a book containing
family histories, which came from the Prendergast private library. From
this book two pages had been cleanly cut away. The Librarians set
themselves to replace the lost material, and after patient efforts in
many quarters, discovered another copy, and had typewritten pages made
and pasted in. Upon the missing pages, thus replaced after the
extinction of James Prendergast's family, was found the account of
William Prendergast's sentence to be hanged. His descendants, had they
lived longer, might have been more proud than ashamed of his rebellion
against injustice.

The Quakers, because they would passively tolerate an intrusion, were
forced to harbor another rendezvous of turbulent men. It is said that
Enoch Crosby, the famous spy of the Revolution, who is believed to
have been Cooper's model for the hero of the novel, "The Spy," came to
Quaker Hill during the Revolution, in pursuance of a plan he was at that
time following, and got together a band of Tory volunteers, who were
planning to join the British army; and delivered them to the Continental
authorities, as prisoners. In this he was assisted by Col. Moorehouse,
who kept a tavern on a site in South Dover, opposite the brick house
which now stands one-half mile south of the Methodist Church.



I have spoken above of the sullen loyalty of the Quakers to the British
Crown during the Revolution. It may have been in part owing to their
loyalty that their neighborhood became more congenial for the Tories who
during that period harried the country-side. The Quakers were Tories,
and are so called in the letters of the period; but the word "Tories"
remains in the speech of Quaker Hill as a name of opprobrium. It
describes a species of guerrillas who infested parts of New York and

The "Tories" of the Revolutionary days furnish the substance of the
stories of violence that are told about the fireside to Quaker Hill boys
and girls. It is difficult, however, to persuade those who have heard
these tales to relate them. Those who know them best are the very ones
who cannot recall them in systematic or orderly form. I mention only one
more of the free lances of the time. The chiefest of all bandit-leaders
of those turbulent times was Waite Vaughn. It is related that this
fellow was the head of a band of Tories, which means locally the same
that the term "Cowboys" or "Skinners" means in the history of
Westchester County. The latter were lawless bands who infested the
regions in which the armies made civil life insecure, and subsisted by
stealing cattle, plundering houses, robbing and often murdering
citizens. "They seemed," says a writer, "like the savages to enjoy the
sight of the sufferings they inflicted. Oftentimes they left their
wretched victims from whom they had plundered their all, hung up by
their arms, and sometimes by their thumbs, on barndoors, enduring the
agony of wounds that had been inflicted to wrest from them their
property. These miserable beings were frequently relieved by the
American patrol."[23] Waite Vaughn lived in Connecticut in the part of
New Fairfield known as Vaughn's Neck. Under the house, recently
demolished, in which "Dr. Vaughn," his brother, is said to have lived
during the Revolution, was found rotted linen below the cellar floor.
Behind the great heap of the chimney also was found a secret cellar, for
years forgotten, in which, among other rubbish of no significance, are
said to have been found counterfeit coins of the Revolutionary period
and other evidences of outlaw practices in that time.[24]

Vaughn used to ride at night with his troop to Quaker Hill, through
Connecticut neighborhoods, which knew the sound of his passing. The
Pepper family still relate the tradition of his riding up "Stony Hill,"
past the point where stands Coburn Meeting House, in the night, while
they and their neighbors stayed discreetly indoors. This rendezvous was
a place in the woods on Irish land, about half way between Sites 96 and
120, now known as "The Robber Rocks." Here the Vaughns are said to have
concealed booty at times, and from this point they made forages upon
farmhouses in the richest neighborhoods of this vicinity. Probably they
spared the Quakers. I will speak later of the fact that Quakers have
ways of their own for protecting themselves against intruders. Moreover,
their men were not gone to the war.

The record of these years, on the pages of the clerk's minute-book, are
a disappointment. One searches in vain for even the slightest trace of
the presence in the Meeting House of the troops. There is no record of
the presence in the Meeting House of the "Tories" or guerrillas of the
Revolution; and not a word about the makers of the rifle-ports in the
gables of this building which the present writer discovered there,
unless it be the unruffled and serene utterance, under date of 8th
Month, 9th, 1781, the very period at which the "Tories" must have been
at their worst: "Samuel Hoag is appointed to take care of the Meeting
House, and to keep the door locked and windows fastened, and to nail up
the hole that goes up into the Garratt." The "Tories" robbed the store
on Site 28. They had hidden for that purpose in the loft of the Meeting
House and were discovered by some young Quakers who were skylarking in
the Meeting House under pretense of cleaning it. The story is that one
of the young men, being dared--of course by a maiden--to open the
trap-door into the garret, and look for the Tories, found them hiding
there. The bandits, being discovered, tumbled down the hole from the
garret, and compelled their discoverers to go with them to the store;
and proceeded at once to plunder it, relying no doubt on the
non-resistant character of the people of the Hill. They stacked their
arms at the door and went about their business in a thorough manner. But
there was that in the blood of some Quakers there that could not contain
itself within the bounds of non-resistance, and one of them, Benjamin
Ferris, cried out, "Seize the rascals." In the scrimmage that resulted
from the excitement of this remark, the leader of the Tories was
recognized by the young lady who had by her challenge to the young man
discovered them, and being taunted by her was so incensed that he
stabbed her. It is only said in closing the story that the blood of both
the fair and adventurous young Quakeress whose abounding spirit brought
on all the trouble, and that of the leader of the "Tories," flows in the
veins, of some who live on the Hill in the twentieth century.

Samuel Towner, a relative of Vaughn, resident in the region of
Fredericksburgh (now Patterson), returning from a trip, once found
Vaughn at his home, and urged him at once to leave, as his property
would be confiscated, if Vaughn's presence there were tolerated.

Vaughn was once pursued by farmers near Little Rest, and was sighted and
surrounded in a lonely road. He turned upon his pursuers coolly and
said: "Now, gentlemen, you can arrest me, or kill me, but you must take
the consequences; for I will kill some of you." Daunted by his
resolution, they stood motionless while he crossed a fence and a field,
and disappeared among the trees of a wooded hill.

Quaker Hill became known as Vaughn's rendezvous, and here he met his
end, I think about 1781. His band had robbed the home of one of the
Pearce family, then as now resident in the valley where Pawling village
stands. The victim was hung up by his thumbs till life was almost
extinct. The next day, Capt. Pearce, of the Revolutionary army, returned
unexpectedly to his home, and set off with armed assistance for the
Robber Rocks on Quaker Hill. Near that spot, in the fields east of Site
97, on the Wing lands, Vaughn and his men were resting, some picking
huckleberries, and some playing cards on a flat stone. Pearce gave no
warning, but opened fire at once. Vaughn fell mortally wounded. He was
carried to John Toffey's residence, Site 53, where he soon died. He is
buried under the trees outside the "Toffey Burying Ground," beside the
brook, in the very heart of Quaker Hill, into which he had intruded
because in that peaceful neighborhood he had for a time a safe asylum.
With his death it is believed that his band dispersed, and their
depredations ceased.

A peaceful people like the Quakers must find means of their own to
protect themselves against intruders. No one can live long on Quaker
Hill without knowing that they have done so. One may brusquely intrude
once, but he will be a violent man indeed, not to say a dull one, who
continues to enjoy invading the preserves of the "Friends." The fourth
instance of a forcible invasion of the Hill was that of Washington's
army, which encamped in the vicinity in the fall of 1778, the
Headquarters being in John Kane's house, on a site now within the
borders of Pawling Village. See on Map I, "HeadQrs."

On his arrival, September 19, 1778, Washington,[25] with his bodyguard,
was entertained for six days at the home of Reed Ferris, in the Oblong,
Site 99,[26] an honored guest, when he moved to the place designated as
his Headquarters on his maps by Erskine. His letters written during his
residence here are all dated from "Fredericksburgh," the name at that
time of the western and older part of the town of Patterson.
Washington's general officers were quartered in the homes of various
residents of the neighborhood. One was so entertained by Thomas Taber,
at the extreme north end of the Hill. It is natural to suppose that
others were housed in nearer places. That Lafayette was entertained at
the home of Russell, who lived at Site 25, now the Post-office, is
reliably asserted. The brick house standing at that time was torn down
by Richard Osborn, who erected the present house. That Washington, with
other officers, was entertained at Reed Ferris's home is asserted by the
descendants most interested, and is undoubtedly true.

The Meeting House was appropriated by the army officers for a hospital,
because it was the largest available building. The only official record,
says Mr. L. S. Patrick, is that of Washington's order, Oct. 20th, "No
more sick to be sent to the Hospital at Quaker Hill, without first
inquiring of the Chief Surgeon there whether they can be received, as it
is already full." Arguing from the date of Washington's order above,
Oct. 20, and from that of Surgeon Fallon below, this use of the
building for a hospital continued three and perhaps five months.
Meantime the Friends' Meetings were held in the barn at Site 21, then
the residence of Paul Osborn. This barn had been the first Meeting House
erected on the Hill in 1742. It was removed to Site 21 in 1769, when it
was used as a barn till 1884, when it was removed by the present

There is no mention, even by inference, in the records of Oblong Meeting
that proves this occupation of their building by soldiers. It was not
voluntarily surrendered; other records show that the use of the building
was supported by force; its surrender was grudging, not a matter to be
recorded in the Meeting. It is characteristic of the Friends that they
ignored it.

This toleration of the Hospital was never sympathetic. A letter of great
interest to the student of those times was written to the Governor of
the State of New York, Hon. George Clinton,[28] by Dr. James Fallon,
physician in charge of the sick which were left on Quaker Hill, in the
Meeting House, after the departure of the Continental army. He could get
no one to draw wood for his hospital in the dead of winter, till finally
"old Mr. Russell, an excellent and open Whig, tho' a Quaker," hired him
a wagon and ox team. He could buy no milk without paying in Continental
money, six for one. He declared that "Old Ferris, the Quaker, pulpiteer
of this place, old Russell and his son, old Mr. Chace and his family,
and Thomas Worth and his family, are the only Quakers on or about this
Hill, the public stands indebted to." The two pioneers of the Hill, the
preacher and the builder, were patriots as well. He denounces the rest
as Tories all, the "Meriths," Akins, Wings, Kellys, Samuel Walker, the
schoolmaster, and Samuel Downing, whom he declared a spurious Quaker and
agent of the enemy; also the preacher, Lancaster, "the Widow Irish;"
and many he called "half-Quakers," who were probably more zealous, and
certainly more violent for Quaker and Tory principles than the Quakers

The trouble culminated in Dr. Fallon's impressing the wagons of Wing,
Kelly and "the widow Irish," to take fourteen men to Danbury and
Fishkill to save their lives. The former impress was not resisted; but
the soldiers who took the Irish team had to battle with a mob, headed by
Abraham Wing and Benjamin Akin, who used the convalescent soldiers
roughly, but could not prevent the seizure. They were not the first men
to do violence for the sake of the principle of non-resistance. One can
see, too, that modern Quakerism has taken a gentler tone.

The small violence done by Abraham Wing and Benjamin Akin, like that of
young Ferriss to prevent the robbery of the Merritt store, was
ineffective. But the Quaker mode of self-protection was more effective
than violence. They "froze out" the doctors and their soldiers from the
Meeting House, by leaving them alone in the bitter winter, by letting
them starve. The bitterness of their Toryism, and the zeal of Quaker
ideals, the ardor of their "make-believe," carried them too far. They
forgot mercy for the sake of opposing the cruelty of war.

Among the soldiers who lay sick in the Meeting House many are said to
have died. They were buried in the grounds of the resident on Site 32,
in the easterly portion of the field facing the Meeting House. No stones
mark their place of rest, as none were ever placed in the cemetery of
the early Quakers in the western part of the same field. Over them both
the horses of persons attending meeting were tethered for many decades.
The ploughman and the mower for years traversed the ground. But it is
not forgotten who were buried there.

Says L. S. Patrick in his attempt to estimate the amount of sickness
and death of soldiers on the hill that winter:[29] "Of the conditions
existing, the prejudices prevailing, and the probable number in the
Hospital, Dr. Fallon's letter to Governor Clinton furnishes the only
account known to exist: 'Out of the 100 sick, Providence took but three
of my people off since my arrival.' On the occasion of the arrival of
Col. Palfrey, the Paymaster General, at Boston from Fredericksburgh,
General Gates writes to General Sullivan: 'I am shocked at our poor
fellows being still encamped, and falling sick by the hundreds.'

"The death list--out of the oblivion of the past but four names have
been found--John Morgan, Capt. James Greer's Co., died at Quaker Hill
Hospital, Oct. 19, 1777(?); Alexander Robert, Capt. George Calhoun's
Co., 4th Pa., Nov. 6, 1778; James Tryer, Capt. James Lang's Co., 5th
Pa., Oct. 22, 1778; Peter King, 1st Pa., enlisted 1777, Quaker Hill
Hospital, N. J.(?) 1778 (no such hospital).

"Some doubt may exist as to two of these, but as the hospital is named,
an error may exist in copying the original record."

[19] "Dutchess County in Colonial Days," 1898, and "Dutchess
County," 1899, papers read before the Dutchess County Society, in the
City of New York, by Hon. Alfred T. Ackert. Also, "History of Dutchess
County," by James H. Smith.

[20] See pp. 20 and 21.

[21] See "New York Mercury," July 28, 1766, August 18 and 25,
1766, September 15, 1766. See also "Dutchess County," by Alfred T.
Ackert, 1899, p. 5.

[22] See Appendix B.

[23] Thacher's "Military Journal of the Revolution."

[24] The narrative of Vaughn is gleaned from old residents,
Almira Briggs Treadwell, Archibald Dodge, Jane Crane, and others.

[25] "Washington Headquarters at Fredricksburgh," by L. S.
Patrick; Quaker Hill Series, 1907.

[26] This matter is very fully treated in "Washington's
Headquarters at Fredericksburgh," by Lewis S. Patrick. Quaker Hill
Conference Local History Series, XVI. 1907.

[27] See No. III, Quaker Hill Series, pp. 12, 42, and No. VIII,
pp. 16, 17.

[28] "Letters of Governor George Clinton," New York State

[29] "Washington Headquarters at Fredricksburgh," by L. S.
Patrick, 1907.


The Transition.



The roads were originally bridle paths, and to this day many a stretch
of road testifies in its steep grade to its use in the days of the pack
saddle. No driver of a wheeled vehicle would have selected so abrupt a

In the early days the roads had a north and south direction. In the
Period of Transition, with the diversion of commerce to the railroad in
Pawling, the roads of an east and west direction became the principal
roads, though the one great Quaker Hill highway north and south is still
the avenue of communication on the Hill.

As the years passed wagons were used; indeed, by the time of the
Revolution, in the second generation, they were bearing all the
transportation. The state of the roads is shown, however, by the fact
that Daniel Merritt was accustomed to pay, in 1772, £1, or $5, for
carting four barrels of beef to the river; that is, about 1,000 lbs.
constituted a load. At the present state of the country roads, a Quaker
Hill employer would expect 2,000 lbs. to make a load. The state of the
roads before the turnpikes were made, that is, before 1800 to 1825, is
described by a resident as follows: "The road was so full of stones,
large and small, that people of to-day would consider impassable for an
empty wagon, to say nothing of drawing a load over it. In the fall of
the year it is said that toward evening one could hear the hammering of
the wheels of the wagons on the stones of the road a distance of four
or five miles."[30]

I cannot learn that Quaker Hill was during the Quaker Period on any main
line of country travel. Marquis De Chastelleux records in his "Travels
in North America," that he journeyed in 1789 to Moorehouse's Tavern (see
Map I) along the Ten Mile River, two or three miles from the Housatonic
to "several handsome houses forming part of the district known as _The
Oblong_. The inn I was going to is in the Oblong, but two miles farther
on. It is kept by Col. Moorehouse, for nothing is more common in America
than to see an inn kept by a colonel ... the most esteemed and most
creditable citizen." There was no inn on Quaker Hill and no colonel. The
Quaker aversion to military titles was then as great as to the sale of
rum. The houses referred to by the French traveller were probably the
northern boundary of the Quaker community, at what is now Webatuck. I
cannot find record of any post road coming nearer than this, until in
the 19th century a stage was maintained between Poughkeepsie and New
Milford, by way of Quaker Hill, making the journey every other day, and
stopping at John Toffey's store at Site 53.

The building of turnpikes became, in the years following 1800, a popular
form of public spirit. Says Miss Taber: "In fact, turnpikes seemed to be
a fad in those days all over the state and probably a necessary one. The
longest one I learn of in this part of the country was from Cold Spring
on the Hudson River to New Milford in Connecticut. The turnpike in which
the people of this neighborhood were most interested was the one
incorporated April 3, 1818, and reads, 'That Albro Akin, John Merritt,
Gideon Slocum, Job Crawford, Charles Hurd, William Taber, Joseph Arnold,
Egbert Carey, Gabriel L. Vanderburgh, Newel Dodge, Jnrs., and such other
persons as shall associate for the purpose of making a good and
sufficient turnpike road in Dutchess Co.' It was named as the Pawlings
and Beekman Turnpike, being a portion of what is known as the
Poughkeepsie road passing over the West Mountain, but we do not find
that anything was done until after the act was revived in 1824, when
Joseph C. Seeley, Benoni Pearce, Samuel Allen, Benjamin Barr and George
W. Slocum were associated with them."

The Pawlings and Beekman Turnpike maintained a tollgate till 1905, when
it was burned down; and the company, which had long discussed its
discontinuance, then abandoned its private rights in that excellent
stretch of road. The turnpike which crossed Quaker Hill ended at the
Jephtha Sabin residence, known to the present generation as "the Garry
Ferris place," Site 74. The roads of the neighborhood were the same in
1778-80 as at the present day, as will be seen from a comparison of Map
I, made by Erskine for Washington, and Map 2, which is a copy of the U. S.
Survey; except the road from Mizzen-Top Hotel to Hammersley Lake,
made after the hotel was erected. The comparison of maps shows also, to
one who knows the use of these roads, that they have changed from a
north and south use to an east and west use; the highway on the
northward slope of the Hill in Dover, and on the southward slope in
Patterson, being but little used to-day. The road from the Meeting House
and cemetery westward, which was once much favored, is now scarcely ever
used, and being neglected by the authorities, is little more than a
stony gutter.

The whole character of the neighborhood was changed by a revolution in
transportation. Not turnpikes effected the change, but railroads. The
early years of the nineteenth century were filled with expectation of
new modes of travel. Robert Fulton was building his steamboat amid the
derision of his contemporaries, and to their amazement steaming up the
Hudson against the tide. At first canals seemed to country folk the
solution of their problem. They occupied in the dawn of the 19th century
the place which trolley cars occupy in the minds of promoters to-day. A
canal was planned to run through the Harlem valley, where now Pawling
stands, and Quaker Hill men were among the promoters of it, among them
Daniel Akin and Johnathan Akin Taber.

Presently, however, came the promotion of railroads, and many of the
same men who had favored the canals, entered heartily into the new
projects. The foundation of Albert Akin's fortune was made when, about
1830, he began to borrow money of his neighbors and invest in the
rapidly growing lines of steam-cars in New York State. There were those,
however, who foresaw dire things from the new iron highway, and old
residents tell of "one man who said that whosoever farm that locomotive
passed through would have to give up fatting cattle, as it would be
impossible to keep a steer on the place."

For many years the railroad came no nearer than Croton Falls. Richard
Osborn used to tell the story of one resident of the Hill who boasted
that he could go to New York and return the same day. This he finally
attempted and accomplished by driving with a good pair of horses to
Croton Falls in the morning, taking an early train to New York,
returning in the evening, and driving home before night. This story,
which is well authenticated, proves the good condition of some of the
roads before 1849, for the drive to Croton Falls is about twenty miles.
Among leading Quaker Hill residents who promoted railroads in the valley
were Jonathan Akin, Daniel D. Akin, J. Akin Taber, John and Albert J.
Akin. The two men who were most influential in completing the last link
of the road--from the local viewpoint--were Albert Akin and Hon. John
Ketcham, of Dover, both recently deceased. They supplied cash for the
continuation of the road from Croton Falls to Dover Plains. To Mr.
Akin the promise was made that if he would supply a building for a
station the road would place an eating house at the point nearest Quaker
Hill. There was then no such village or hamlet as Pawling, the locality
being known as "Goosetown." Patterson was an old village, west of its
present business center one mile, and was known as Fredericksburgh.
Dover also was a place of distinction in the country-side. Mr. Akin,
with several yoke of oxen, hauled a dwelling to the railroad track from
the site on which Washington's Headquarters stood in 1778; and thus was
initiated the settlement of the village which is now among the most
thriving on the road.

[Illustration: A QUAKER GENTLEMAN]

At that time Quaker Hill was the most prosperous community for many
miles around. A description of its industries will be found elsewhere,
in Chap. IV, Part I. The coming of the railroad changed the whole aspect
of things. The demand for milk to be delivered by farmers at the
railroad station every day, and sold the next day in New York, began at
once. It soon became the most profitable occupation for the farmers and
the most profitable freight for the railroad. Eleven years after the
first train entered Pawling came the war, with inflated prices. The
farmer found that no use of his land paid him so much cash as the
"making of milk," and thereafter the raising of flax ceased, grain was
cultivated less and less, except as it was to be used in the feeding of
cattle, and even the fatting of cattle soon had to yield to the lowered
prices occasioned by the importation of beef from western grazing lands.
The making of butter and cheese, with the increased cost of labor on the
farms, was abandoned, that the milk might be sold in bulk to the city
middleman. The time had not come, however, in which farmers or their
laborers imported condensed milk, or used none. Quaker Hill farmers lived
too generously and substantially for that; but they ceased, during the
Civil War, when milk was bought "at the platform" for six cents a quart,
to make butter or cheese.

Thus the Harlem Railroad transformed Quaker Hill from a community of
diversified farming, producing, manufacturing, selling, consuming,
sufficient unto itself, into a locality of specialized farming. Its
market had been Poughkeepsie, twenty-eight miles away, over high hills
and indifferent roads. Its metropolis became New York City, sixty-two
miles away by rail and four to eight miles by wagon road.

With the railroad's coming the isolated homogeneous community scattered.
The sons of the Quakers emigrated. Laborers from Ireland and other
European lands, even negroes from Virginia, took their places. New
Yorkers became residents on the Hill, which became the farthest terminus
of suburban traffic. The railroad granted commuters' rates to Pawling,
and twice as many trains as to any station further out. The population
of the Hill became diversified, while industries became simplified. In
the first century the people were one, the industries many. In the
Period of the Mixed Community, in the second century, the people were
many and the industries but one. I speak elsewhere of these elements of
the mixed community. Suffice it to have traced here the simplifying of
the economic life of the Hill, by the influence of the railroad, which
made the neighborhood only one factor in a vaster industrial community,
of which New York was the center. When the Meeting House and the Merritt
store were for a century the centers of a homogeneous Quaker community,
it was a solid unit, of one type, doing varied things; when Wall Street
and Broadway became the social and industrial centers, a varied people,
no less unified, did but one thing.

[30] "Some Glimpses of the Past," by Alicia Hopkins Taber.



The transition from the mixed or diversified farming of the Quaker
community to the special and particular farming of the mixed community
is written in the growth of the dairy industry, which in the year 1900
was the one industry of the Hill. In 1800 dairy products were only
beginning to emerge from a place in the list of products of the Quaker
Hill lands to a single and special place as the only product of salable
value. While the Hill people constituted a community dependent on itself
and sufficient unto itself, the exceptional fitness of the "heavy clay
soil" to the production of milk, butter and cheese did not assert
itself, and wheat, rye, flax, apples, potatoes were raised in large
quantities and sold; but in the period of opening communication with the
world in general, exactly in proportion as the Hill shared in the growth
of commerce, by so much did the dairy activities supplant all other
occupations. The order of this emergence is a significant commentary
upon the opening of roads and the development of transportation. The
stages are: first, cheese and butter; second, fat cattle; and third,
milk. At the end of the Quaker community, when the best roads were of
the east and west directions, and Poughkeepsie was the market-place,
cheese and butter were made for a "money crop," by the women, who
retained the money for their own use.

There is a story told in the Taber and Shove families, which prettily
shows the customs in the Quaker century. Anne Taber, wife of Thomas
Taber, substantial pioneer at the north end of the Hill, "had a fine
reputation as a cheese maker." Being a New England woman, she was of the
few who in Revolutionary days were in sympathy with the Colonies, and
she gave forth that she would present a cheese to the first general
officer who should visit the neighborhood. "One day, being summoned to
the door," writes one of her descendants, "she was greatly surprised to
find a servant of General Washington, with a note from him claiming,
under conditions of the promise, the cheese. Of course it was sent, and
the General had opportunity to test her skill in that domestic art."[31]

The Taber family did not preserve that note; but in the Treasury
Department of the United States, among Washington's memoranda of
expenditures, is the item under date of Nov. 6, 1778, "To Cash paid
servant for bringing cheese from Mr. Taber, 16 shillings." It would seem
that the fame of Anne Taber's cheeses had won her a market with the
officers at Headquarters, for sixteen shillings was payment "for
bringing cheese" in large quantity, and the date is six weeks after the
arrival of Washington for his stay in the vicinity.

In the ledger of the Merritt store, under date of Nov. 6, 1772, Thomas
Taber, Esq., is credited as follows: "By 29 cheses wd. 484 lb. at 6d.,
£12 2s." In that year Thomas Taber, Esq., satisfied his account with an
ox, £6 16s.; cash, £10; three pounds and nine ounces of old pewter, 4s.
6d.; seven hogs, £20 11s. 6d., and the above 29 cheeses. So that
approximately one-fourth of the "money crop" of this substantial farmer
was in the form of a dairy product. In the year 1895, the average Quaker
Hill farm was producing, as will be shown in Chapter III, Part III,
ninety per cent. of dairy product, namely milk.

The second phase of the industry proper to Quaker Hill was that of
raising fat cattle. This culminated at the end of the period of the
Quaker Community. In this industry were laid the foundations of some
large fortunes. It brought in its day more money into the neighborhood
than any other occupation had ever brought. It disappeared with the
coming of the railroad into the valley, bringing, in refrigerator cars,
meat from western lands, and killed in Chicago. Then the cattle were
fattened on these hills, in the rich grass, and driven to New York to be
killed and sold there.

In "Some Glimpses of the Past," Miss Taber says: "But the chief business
of most farmers was the fatting of cattle. The cattle were generally
bought when from two to three years old, usually in the fall, kept
through the winter and the following summer fattened and sold. They were
the only things that did not have to go to the river to reach the
market. From all over the country they were driven to New York on foot,
and the road through the valley was the main thoroughfare for them.
Monday was the market day in New York and all started in time to reach
the city by Saturday. From Pawling the cattle were started on Thursday,
and those from greater distances planned to reach this part of their
journey on that day. It used to be said that the dealers could tell what
the market would be in New York on the following Monday by watching the
cattle that passed through Pawling on Thursday. The cattle were
collected and taken to the city by drovers; theirs was a great business
in those days. Hotels or taverns were provided for their accommodation
at frequent intervals along the road. Ira Griffin was a drover and Mr.
Archibald Dodge remembers when a boy going to New York with him and his
cattle, walking all the way. There were also droves of cattle other than
fat ones, on the road, some called store cattle, and the books of Mr.
Benjamin V. Haviland, who kept one of the taverns, show that in the year
1847 there had been kept on his place 27,784 cattle, 30,000 sheep and
700 mules, and it is said that occasionally there would be 2,000 head
between his tavern and that of John Preston's in Dover. When Mr. Albert
J. Akin was a young man he was considered an expert judge and buyer of
steers for fattening, and generally had the finest herd of fat cattle."

This reference is to the business at its height and applies to the years
1800-1850. In the books of John Toffey's store are frequent references
to the business.

Interesting material is furnished for the study of the period of
transition, in the records of the store kept by John Toffey at Site No.
53. These old day-books and ledgers are incomplete, but they cover
spaces of time in the years 1814, 1824, 1833; and their account of the
purchases made by John Toffey's customers furnishes a record, we may
suppose, of the goods brought into the households on the Hill at that
time, from other communities; as well as the actual exchange of
commodities on the Hill, where at that time diversified industries were
carried on.

The growth of trade in these respects, from the period 1814-1816 to the
period 1824-1833 will be considered in four lines, as it is exhibited in
the commodities: first of Costume, second of Food and Medicine, and
third of Tools and Material for Industry, fourth, of House-furnishings.
It is assumed that John Toffey kept a representative store, and that the
growth in his trade corresponded to the growth in the commercial
interchange in the community.

In 1814-1816 the imported goods kept and sold by John Toffey are cloth
(perhaps in part locally manufactured), indigo, thread, cambric,
penknives, knitting needles, spelled "nittenneedels," plaster, fine
salt, molasses, tea, apple-trees, nutmeg, shad and occasionally other
fish. The list is brief, and its proportion to the other commodities
sold in the store evidences the simplicity of a community dependent
chiefly upon itself, and living a life of rudeness and content.

Among prices which change in the twenty years recorded in John Toffey's
books are those of molasses which was in 1814-1816 $2.00 per gallon, and
fell to $1.25 and in 1824 to 35c. per gallon. "Tobago" was sold in 1814
at $2.75 per pound, and later for 62c. Flour was sold in 1814 for $18
per barrel, or 9c. per pound; wool hats at $4; fine salt 10c. per pound;
plaster $3.25 per hundredweight; boots at $9.00; tea at $2.75 per pound.

A day's work for a man in 1814-1816 was from $1.00 per day for ordinary
work, to $1.25 for driving oxen, or $1.50 for "digging a grave," or the
same amount "for going after the thief."

House-rent is recorded at the rate of thirty dollars a year.

One may explain the high rates of many of these commodities, and the
relatively high rate paid for labor by the prevalence of war prices at
the time. Commodities such as molasses would be expensive as a result of
the stoppage of sea-trade; and the labor market was exhausted to supply
the army with soldiers.

In 1824 Toffey imported, for Costuming, shawls, crepe at $1 per yard,
silk, skein-silk, twist, ribbon, velvet at 90c. per yard, drab-cloth,
flannel, braid, handkerchiefs, buttons and button-moulds, gloves,
suspenders, calico, vest patterns, pins, chrome-yellow, "bearskin" at
82c. per yard, dress handkerchiefs, beads, buckles, silk flags and
morocco skins.

Of new foods he imported molasses at 35c. per gallon, oranges at 2c.
each, which he seems to have sold only one by one, sugar at 6c., tobacco
at 12c., alum, tea at 85c., salt at $1 per bushel, pepper, all-spice,
raisins, salt-peter, pearlash, castile soap, hard soap, paregoric,
ginger, logwood, vitriol, cinnamon, snuff, sulphur, cloves, mustard,
opium, coffee, loaf sugar, watermelons, and seeds for beets, lettuce,

Of House-furnishings, he had for sale, knives, forks--one set of knives
and forks selling for $13, plates, bowls, pitchers, mugs, teacups,
teapots, decanters, almanacs, brooms, oilcloth, glass and putty,
inkstands, bedsteads, spoons in sets, sugar-bowls, tin pans.

Of Tools and Materials for Industry he sold nails by the "paper," by the
hundred and by the pound, files, oil at 75c. a gallon, locks, slates,
paper, pocket-books, pencils, turpentine, raw steel and iron, spectacles
at 34c., sandpaper, shovels and spades, screws, gimlets.

Rum, brandy and gin appear also, with powder, shot and fishhooks, as
tributes to the convivial and adventurous spirit. But the convivial
spirits were the better patrons, for there was scarcely an entry in
certain years in which was not an item of alcoholic spirits. The
sporting goods were only occasionally purchased.

In 1833 for Costuming, cotton-batting had appeared, and canton flannel,
canvas, blue jeans at 83c. per yard, brown Holland, cloth at $3.64 per
yard, hats at 44c. each, hooks and eyes, pearl buttons at 10c. a dozen,
side combs, bandanna handkerchiefs; while sole-leather was still sold in
quantity, with buckskin mittens, which were scarcely made on the Hill.

For Industry, behold the arrival of pincers, gum arabic, "Pittsburgh
cord" at 21c. per yard. In Housings, candles, frying pans, tin pails,
dippers, tin basins, wash-tubs made their appearance; and in this year
for the first time window-blinds were sold, for 75c.

For Food and Medicines John Toffey offered at this time codfish, coffee,
souchong tea, crackers, castor oil, camphor gum, Epsom salts.

Meantime, a day's wages had fallen from $1 and $1.50 to 65c. and 75c.
per day.

The growth of trade in John Toffey's store is summarized in Table I. In
this table may be seen also the growth of economic demand. The increase
of the number of kinds of commodities in each evidences the acquirement
of varied tastes by this people of the Hill.

 Commodities         | 1814-16 |  1824  |  1833
 Costume             |    5    |   25   |   38
 Food and Medicine   |    5    |   29   |   36
 Tools and Materials |    5    |   18   |   21
 House Furnishings   |         |   18   |   24
 Daily Wage          |$1.-$1.50|        |65c.-75c.

The above summary of the importations to the Hill in the years 1814-1833
casts light upon the social and religious history of the period in
question; in which occurred the greatest social convulsion this
community has ever known. In the year 1828 the Religious Society of the
Friends was divided, never to be united, the integrity of the community
as a social and religious unit was ended, the ties of a century were
severed, and instead of the "unity" of which Quakers are always so
conscious, came mutual criticism, recrimination, and excommunication of
one-half of the community by the majority of the Meeting. Thus ended the
communal life of Quaker Hill, and began the disintegration of the
community which is now almost complete.

It is true that this schism was general throughout the denomination, in
all the United States; and that it was shared in its doctrinal
influences by the Congregational churches, the Unitarian Association
having been formed in Boston in 1825. But nevertheless it had roots on
Quaker Hill in an economic condition; and that economic condition may
have been general throughout the Eastern States.

Let the doctrinal causes of this schism be considered elsewhere.[32]
Economic causes are hinted at in the above paragraphs. There came in
many embellishments of life which must have seemed to early Friends mere
luxuries, and to the stricter few must have appeared instruments of sin,
as "beads," "ribbons," velvet, silk, braid, crepe, shawls, dress
handkerchiefs, buckles, silk flags, pearl buttons--these are expressions
of new states of mind. The economic change underlying the social
convulsion is seen in the increase of varied stuffs for costume,
articles and materials for the food and medicine cupboards of the
farmhouses, and in more varied tools and materials both for industry and
house furnishing.

Even more influential than the exciting power of luxuries would be the
quieter and more pervasive stimulus of comfort. Houses that are glazed
and ceiled and furnished with well adapted implements in every room;
tables set with all the wares of leisurely and pleasurable feeding speak
a new state of affairs. The people so clothed and so fed begin to
produce in every family some members of cultured tastes, some of
independent thought, who are restive under the denials of Quakerism.

Business and industry too become more varied; and the effect of this
prosperous and varied industry shows itself in active and critical
minds. Importation from places beyond Poughkeepsie awakened imagination
and invited reflection upon the state of the world.

All this time the daily wage continued to fall, from $1 and $1.50 in
1814 to 50c., 65c. and 75c. in 1833. It is said that men bitterly
commented, in those days of the rapid development of the country, that a
farmer who paid a laborer fifty cents for a day's labor in the hay-field
from daybreak to dark, would pay the same amount, fifty cents, for his
supper on the Hudson River boat, when he made his annual visit to the
great city of New York.

We have, then, in John Toffey's daybook a reflection of conditions
which had to do with the break-up of the community, as truly as did the
theological difference between Elias Hicks and the Orthodox. Comfortable
living, diversified and intensified industry, importation of expensive
and stimulating comforts, leisure with its sources in wealth, and its
tendencies toward reflection, and especially a differentiation of the
homogeneous community into diverse classes, owing to lowered wages and
multiplied embellishments of life, made up altogether the raw materials
of discontent, criticism and division.

These factors go with a state of growing discontent and disintegration.
The men and women possessed of leisure cultivated a humanist state of
mind, with which arose a critical spirit, a nicer taste and a cultured
discrimination. They were offended by literalism, bored by crudeness
however much in earnest, and disgusted with the illogical assertions of
pietists. The imperative mandate of the meeting awakened in them only
opposition. They found many to sympathize with their state of mind.

On the other side there were those who seriously feared the incoming of
luxurious ways. They distrusted books, remembering the values of one
Book to the laborer who reads it alone; they believed in plainness, and
their minds associated freedom of dress with freedom of thought. They
resented also the new privileges conferred on some by wealth, because to
most had come only harder work with discontent.

The schism which rent the community was an economic heresy, the belief
in the use of money for embellishment of life. All the Quakers regarded
with favor the making of money. The Liberals, however, saw ends beyond
money, and processes of ultimate value beyond administration and
business. They looked for household comforts, books, travel, and the
leisure with great souls who have written and have expressed the
greatest truths. They believed in a divinity such as could have made,
and regarded with favor, the whole teeming world.

The Orthodox saw the values of prosperity only in plainness of life,
recognized no divinity in humanized manners, and sternly but
ineffectually called the community back to idealized commonplaceness,
and to hear the utterances of rude ploughmen and cobblers in the name of

One ventures to believe, too, that there was a falling away from all
religious exercises at this time, and that the pious of both schools
were troubled about it, and accused one another. The poor were too hard
worked and too poorly paid to feel anything but discontent; and the
leaders of the community differed as to the solution of the religious
problem. Hence came division.

The Quakers are conscious of religious "unity," but their mode of life
is a true economic unity. The Quaker Community was re-arranging itself
economically, but the members felt a religious change. Class division
was coming upon them, and they felt it as a sectarian division. It was
indeed the end of the old community ruled by religion, and the formation
of a new neighborhood life; a new Quakerism, ruled by economic classes:
the persons of influence being invariably persons of means, and the
dominating leaders rich. Doubtless the Quakers who led in the Division
of 1828 hoped, in each party equally, to maintain the old religious
domination. The community has never granted that leadership to the
divided Meeting, neither to the Orthodox, nor to the Hicksites. The real
power has, since a period antedating the division, been in the hands of
those who have owned farms centrally located; who in addition to owning
land centrally located have been possessed of large means: the "rich
men" and "wealthy women" have possessed a monopoly of actual leadership.
If also, they have been religiously inclined, their leadership has been

[31] "Thomas Taber and Edward Shove--a Reminiscence," by Rev.
Benjamin Shove; Quaker Hill Series, 1903.

[32] The matter is fully treated in "Quaker Hill in the
Nineteenth Century," by Rev. Warren H. Wilson; Quaker Hill Series of
Local History No. IV.



In religion the solidarity of this country place has been best shown in
the fact that, during most of its history, it has had but one church at
a time. For one hundred years there was the undivided meeting. From 1828
to 1885 the Hicksite--Unitarian, branch of the Friends held the Old
Meeting House, with diminishing numbers. The Orthodox had their smaller
meeting house around the corner, attended by decreasing gatherings. In
1880 was organized Akin Hall, in which till 1892 were held religious
services in the summer only. Since that time religious services have
been held there all the year round. The early united meeting had a
membership of probably two hundred, and audiences of three hundred were
not uncommon.

The church in Akin Hall, named "Christ's Church, Quaker Hill," had in
1898 a membership of sixty-five, and audiences of fifty to two hundred
and fifty, according to the occasion and the time of year. In the past
the general attitude of the community toward religion has been reverent
and sympathetic. It is no less so to-day.

Of religious ceremonies the Quakers claim to have none. But they are
fond of ceremoniousness beyond most men. The very processes by which
they abolish forms are made formal processes. They have ceremonies the
intent of which is to free them from ceremony. The meeting is called to
order by acts ever so simple, and dismissed by two old persons shaking
hands; but these are invariable and formal as a doxology and a
benediction. They receive a stranger in their own way. A visiting
minister is honored with fixed propriety. An expelled member is read out
of meeting with stated excommunicatory maledictions.

Worship has had on Quaker Hill a large place in characterizing the
social complexion of the people. By this, I mean that the peculiarities
of the Quaker worship, now a thing of the past, have engraved themselves
upon character. Those peculiarities are four: the custom of silence; the
non-employment of music, or conspicuous color or form; the separate
place provided for women; the assertion and practice of individualism.

The silence of the Quaker meeting is far from negative. It is not a mere
absence of words. It is a discipline enforced upon the lower elements of
human nature, and a reserve upon the intellectual elements, in order
that God may speak. I think that in this silence of the meeting we
discover the working of the force that has moulded individual character
on Quaker Hill and organized the social life. For this silence is a
vivid experience, "a silence that may be felt." The presence and
influence of men are upon one, even if that of God be not. The
motionless figures about one subtly penetrate one's consciousness,
though not through the senses. They testify to their belief in God when
they do not speak better than they could with rhetoric or eloquence. It
is the influence of many, not of one; yet of certain leaders who are the
organs of this impression, and of the human entity made of many who in
communion become one. The self-control of it breathes power, and
principle, and courage. One would expect a Quaker meeting to exert an
imperious rule upon the community. It is an expression of the majesty of
an ideal. I believe that the Quaker Hill meeting has been able to
accomplish whatever it has put its hand to do. The only pity is that the
meeting tried to do so little.

The original religious influence of Quakerism, carried through all
changes and transformation, was a pure and relentless individualism. It
was the doctrine that the Spirit of God is in every heart of man,
absolutely every one; resisted indeed by some, but given to each and
all. With honest consistency it must be said, the Quakers applied
this--and this it was they did apply--to the status of women, to the
question of slavery, to the civic relations of men. This it was that
made Fox and Penn refuse to doff their hats before judge, or titled
lord, or the king himself.

The character of the common mind of the community has been much
influenced by the fact that the Quakers made no use of color, form and
music either in worship or in private life; that they also idealized the
absence of these. They made it a matter of noble devotion. In nothing do
local traditions abound more than in stories of the stern repression of
the aesthetic instincts. One ancient Quakeress, coming to the well-set
table at a wedding, in the old days, beheld there a bunch of flowers of
gay colors, and would not sit down until they were removed. Nor could
the feast go on until the change was effected. So great was the power of
authority, working in the grooves of "making believe," that those who
might have tolerated the bouquet in silence, as well as those who had
sensations of pleasure in it, supported her opposition.

I have spoken elsewhere of the effect of this century-long repression
and ignoring of the aesthetic movements of the human spirit, in banking
the fires of literary culture in this population. The present
generation, all inheriting the examples of ancestors ruled in such
unflinching rigor, has in none of its social grouping any true sense of
color or of the beauty of color. Neither in the garments of those who
have laid off the Quaker garb, nor in the decorations of the houses is
there a lively sense of the beauty of color. None of the women of Quaker
extraction has a sense of color in dress; nor can any of them match or
harmonize colors. I except, of course, those whose clothing is directly
under the control of the city tailor or milliner. The general effect of
costume and of the decorations of a room, in the population who get
their living on the Hill, is that of gray tones, and drab effects; not
mere severity is the effect, but poverty and want of color.

In forms of beauty they know and feel little more. I do not refer to the
lack of appreciation of the elevations and slopes of this Hill itself--a
constant delight to the artistic eye. Farmers and laborers might fail to
appreciate a scene known to them since childhood. But there is in the
Quaker breeding, which gives on certain sides of character so true and
fine a culture a conspicuous lack in this one particular.

As to music, even that of simplest melody, it has come to the Hill, but
it "knows not Joseph." An elderly son of Quakerism said: "You will find
no Quaker or son of the Quakers who can sing; if you do find one who can
sing a little, it will be a limited talent, and you will unfailingly
discover that he is partly descended from the world's people."

The effect of this aesthetic negation appears, it seems to the present
writer, in a certain rudeness or more precisely a certain lack in the
domain of manners, outside of the interests in which Quakerism has given
so fine a culture. This appears to be keenly felt by the descendants of
Friends. Not in business matters; for they are made directors of savings
banks and corporations, and trustees, and referees, and executors of
estates, in all which places they find themselves at home. Nor is it a
lack of dignity and composure in the parlor or at the table. Nor is it a
lack of sense of propriety in meetings of worship. But it is in matters
ethical, civic and deliberate, and in the free and discursive meetings
of men, in which new and intricate questions are to arise; in positions
of trust, in which the highest considerations of social responsibility
constitute the trust; in these, the men and women trained in Quakerism
are lacking throughout whole areas of the mind, and lacking, too, in
ethical standards, which can only appeal to those whose experience has
fed on a rich diversity of sources and distinctions.

In this I speak only of the Quaker group and of those who have been
under its full influence. It does not apply to the Irish Catholics, nor
to the incomers from the city. The Quakers and their children lack
precisely those elements of aesthetic breeding which would be
legitimately derived from contemplation and enjoyment of beauty aside
from ethical values. Ethical beauty, divorced from pure beauty, a stern,
bare, grim beauty they have, and their children and employees have. But
they have little sense of order in matters that do not proceed to the
ends of money-making, housekeeping and worship. They do not seem to
possess instinctive fertility of moral resource. It may be due to other
sources as well, but it seems to the present writer that the moral
density shown by some of these birthright Quakers, upon matters outside
of their wonted and trodden ethical territories, is due to their long
refusal to recognize aesthetic values, and to see discriminations in the
field in which ethics and aesthetics are interwoven.

They made red and purple to be morally wrong, idealizing the plainness
of their uncultured ancestry, and sweet sounds they excluded from their
ears, declaring them to be evil noises, because they would set up the
boorishness of simple folk of old time as something noble and exalted,
"making believe" that such aesthetic lack was real self-denial and
unworldliness. It is not surprising that in a riper age of the world,
after lifetimes of this idealization of peasant states of mind, their
children find themselves morally and mentally unprepared for the
responsibilities of citizenship, of high ethical trust and of the varied
ways of a moral world, whose existence their fathers made believe to
ignore and deny.

Women have always occupied in Quakerism a place theoretically equal to
that of the men, in business and religious affairs. George Fox and his
successors declared men and women equal, inasmuch as the Divine Spirit
is in every human soul.

After the influence of the early Friends ceased, the place of woman
began to be circumscribed by new rules, and crystallized in a reaction
under the influence of purely social forces; so that this most sensible
people made women equal to men in meetings and in religious legislation
through a form of sexual taboo.

Following the custom of many early English meeting houses, the men and
women sat apart, the men on one side of the middle aisle, and the women
on the other, so that men and women were not equals in the individualist
sense, as they are for instance, in the practice and theory of
Socialism, but were equals in separate group-life; to each sex, grouped
apart from the other, equal functions were supposed to be delegated.
Oblong Meeting House, on Quaker Hill, had seats for two hundred and
fifty people on the ground floor, and in the gallery for one hundred and
fifty more. The men's side was separated from the women's, of equal size
and extent, by wooden curtains, which could be raised or lowered; so
that the whole building could be one auditorium, with galleries; or the
curtains could be so lowered that no man on the ground floor could see
any woman unless she be a speaker on the "facing seats"; nor could any
young person in the gallery see any one of the opposite sex; yet a
speaker could be heard in all parts. The curtains could be so fixed,
also, that two independent meetings could be held, each in a separate
auditorium, even the speakers being separated from one another.

It was the custom for women to have delegated to them certain religious
functions, at Monthly Meeting and Quarterly and Yearly Meetings, on
which they deliberated, before submitting them to the whole meeting.
This old Oblong Meeting House is a mute record and symbol of the
century-old contest of the Puritan spirit among the old Quakers,
striving for an inflexibly right relation between the sexes. They
attained their ends through the creation of a community, but not until
the community dissolved.

The position of woman among Friends is another eloquent tribute to the
two-fold "dealing" of Quakerism with women. She is man's equal, but she
is man's greatest source of danger. She must be on a par with him, but
she must be apart from him. The relations of men and women are therefore
very interesting. In doctrinal matters, in discussion, in preaching and
"testifying," men and women are equal, and the respect that a man has
for his wife or sister or neighbor woman, in these functions of a devout
sort is like that he has for another man. Generally the men of the
Quaker school of influence believe as a matter of course in the
intellectual and juristic equality of women with men; and in the
religious equality of the individual woman with the individual man. But
in the practical arts and in business a woman is a woman and a man is a
man. Here the women are restricted by convention to housekeeping, which
on large farms is quite enough for them; and the men have the outdoor
life, the "trading," and the gainful occupations--except the boarding of
city people. There is no especial respect for the "managing woman" who
"runs a farm"; the community expects such a woman to fail.

Moreover, between the sexes there is no camaraderie, no companionship of
an intellectual sort between husband and wife, no free exchange of ideas
except in circles made up of the members of one sex. In any public
meeting the men habitually sit apart from their wives and from the women
members of their families, even though the audiences be not bilaterally

The orbits of man's and woman's lives are separate, though each ascribes
to the individuals of the other sex an ethical and religious parity. The
effect is seen in the diminishing of the numbers of men on the Hill, in
the group-life of the women, and in the type of woman. It may be well to
consider these in reverse order.

The individual Quaker Hill woman, so far as she differs from women
generally, may be described as a woman almost perfectly conformed to
type, presenting fewer variations than elsewhere, either in the form of
youthful prettinesses and follies, or in the strenuous opinion of mature
years. She is neither a flirt as a girl, nor a radical as a woman. Color
has not yet come into her maidenly days, nor violence of opinion into
her womanly years. She affects neither fashion nor intellectual
eccentricity. Yet she attains to a better average of reasonable,
sensible action than she could otherwise do. She knows less of the
impulsive, emotional prettiness of adolescence than women of other
country communities, and in later years gives herself less to
intellectual vagaries. Women's rights are established on the Hill; it is
impossible to be strenuous about them.

The numerous groupings and associations of women are especially
interesting in view of the fact that the men of the Hill have no
associations whatever, now that the stores are closed; and are assembled
in no fixed groupings. It has never been possible, so far as records go,
to maintain a society of men on the Hill. In the early part of the
period under study a literary and debating society was organized, with
social attractions; but it was feeble and short-lived. There are not
enough leaders among the men to make such group-life possible. They are
related by ties of labor, rather than of class-fraternity; and they have
never acquired any interest common to their sex to assemble them in
groups and companies; the discipline of the religion known to the Hill
has discouraged and outlawed it.

This contrast may have something to do with the departure of men from
the Hill. So long as the stores were in operation, at Toffey's, Akin's,
and Merritt's places, the men could meet there, and had in their
assembling a natural group-life, which satisfied many with life in the
country. But with the closing of the stores after the coming of the
railroad in 1849, this also failed, and the men having no capacity for
general association with one another, and few interests possessed in
common with the women, have been the more impelled to leave the Hill.
Economic advantage had only to be as good elsewhere, and the man
emigrated. I have not known those who have left the place, in my
knowledge of it, to give as a reason inability to make a good living
there; but always they have spoken most emphatically of the bareness and
lack of interest in the social life of the Hill as their reason for
emigrating to the city or large town.

Part III.

The Mixed Community, from 1880 to the Present.



There are ninety-three dwellings on Quaker Hill, as defined above, and
illustrated in Map II. The shaded area alone is referred to here as the
area proper to the term "Quaker Hill." In these dwellings live four
hundred and five persons. This gives a density of population of 26.667
per square mile. In the summer months of July and August there come to
the Hill at least five hundred and nineteen more, increasing the density
of population to more than 61 per square mile.

There is a steady emigration from the Hill, due to the departure of
working-people and their families in search of better economic
opportunities. This has in ten years removed thirty-nine persons. Death
has removed or occasioned the removal of twenty-seven more, while only
three have been removed by marriage.

Over against this there has been an immigration in the years 1895-1905
of thirty persons; of whom eleven have come in to labor, and nineteen
for residence on their own property.

There were resident in 1905 on Quaker Hill the following social-economic
classes: Professional men, three; one minister, two artists; wealthy
business men, three; farmers, thirty-eight; laborers, forty (heads of

There were fifty-three births in ten years, 1895-1905, of which fourteen
were in the families of property-owners, and thirty-nine in families of
tenants. There were in these ten years thirty-one deaths, of which
twenty-five were in the families of property-owners, and only six in
those of tenants. Thus the tenant class, bound to the community by no
ties of property, contributed 73 per cent. of the births and only 20 per
cent. of the deaths, while the property holders suffered 80 per cent. of
the deaths and were increased by only 26.4 per cent. of the births. The
number of persons in the families of property holders in 1905 was 184,
and in those of tenants 221. These are as one to one and one-fifth. This
difference is not enough to account for the great disparity in births
and deaths between the two classes of families. For, allowing for this
difference, births are two and one-third times as numerous in the
working and landless class as among the landowners; and deaths are
almost three and a half times as many among the landholders as among
their servants and tenants.

The present population of the Hill is of a composition which is
explainable by migration, and by the effect of the topography of the
Hill upon that population. There is every evidence that before the
coming of the railroad in 1849 the population was unified, and the
community freer of neighborhood groupings. The lists of customers who
traded at Daniel Merritt's store, given in Appendix B of this volume,
indicates the centering on the Hill of a wide economic life. Every
record and tradition of a religious sort indicates that the Oblong
Meeting House was also the center of a religious community as
wide-spread as the business of the stores. The Hill was one neighborhood
until 1828, when the Division of the Meeting occurred; and 1849, when
the railroad came to Pawling. It is not now one neighborhood. Three
groupings of households may be discerned, roughly designated "The North
End," "Quaker Hill Proper," and "Wing's Corners." The second of these,
being the territory most under scrutiny in Part III, might again be
divided into the territory "up by the Meeting House," and that "down by
Mizzen-Top." The difficulty one experiences in naming these groupings
of houses is a token of the indefiniteness of these divisions. They are
accentuated by events occurring in the more recent history of the Hill.
The older history which shapes the consciousness of the community does
not know these neighborhood divisions. Yet the change of the emphasis of
travel to the roads running east and west, from those north and south,
has separated these neighborhoods from one another. "The North End,"
therefore, is composed of those households between Sites 1 and 15, who
go to the village of Pawling for "trading" and "to take the cars," along
the road which passes Sites 16 to 18. They include Hammersley Lake and
Hurd's Corners in their interests.

The "Middle Distance," or as I would call it "The Meeting House
Neighborhood," is composed of those households from Sites 21 to 41; "the
Hotel Neighborhood," of those from Site 42 to 95; and these all, whether
regarded as one or as two sections, go habitually to the village by the
"Mizzen-Top road," past Sites 99 and 113.

"Wing's Corner" is properly the name of Site 100, but it may serve for a
title of the southern neighborhood from Site 122 to 104. From this
neighborhood all travel to the valley by the road westward from the

The "North End" and "Wing's Corners" are settled almost entirely by
Americans, and until within the past two years, by families derived from
the original population. "Quaker Hill Proper" is the place of residence
of the Irish-Americans. It has been also the place of residence of the
last of the Quakers during the period, just closed, of the Mixed
Community. It is also the territory in which land has the highest value.
Here also are the residences of all the persons of exceptional wealth.

The community most cherishes the central territory, lying upon the two
miles of road between the Mizzen-Top Hotel and the Meeting House, and
extending beyond these points and on either hand one-half mile. Within
this area land is nominally held at a thousand dollars an acre.

"The proximate causes of demotic composition," says Professor
Giddings,[33] "are organic variation and migration. The ultimate causes
are to be looked for in the characteristics of the physical
environment." The Quaker Hill population, drawn originally from a common
source, was in 1828 perfectly homogeneous. The very intensity of the
communal life had effected the elimination of strange and other
elements, and preserved only the Quakers, and those who could live with
the Quakers. Since 1849 this population has become increasingly
heterogeneous. It is not yet a blended stock. There is but little vital
mixture of the elements entering into social and economic union here.
They do not generally intermarry. They are related only by economic
facts and by religious sympathies, so that the effect of organic
variation does not yet appear among them. But in this chapter the effect
of immigration will be indicated.

The influence of the physical environment is worthy of brief notice.
Between one and another of the three neighborhoods lie stretches of
land, nearly a mile wide, valued less highly than that on which the
clusters of houses stand. In the days before the railroad, the
population passed over this territory to the centers of the community in
the three stores at Toffey's, Akin's and Muritt's places, and to the
Meeting House. But with the necessity of driving westward to the
railway, the stretches of road passing poorer land had diminished use,
and the clusters of households, once closely related, ceased to
interchange reactions and services; so a segregation of neighborhoods
began, which is increasing with time.

The list of members of the Meeting in Appendix A, and that of customers
of one of the stores in Appendix B, will serve to show the extent of the
community, religious and economic, in the eighteenth century. A steady
shrinkage has drawn in the margins of this communal life. At this date
Quaker Hill receives no tribute from any outer territory; and might be
confined to the limits of "Quaker Hill Proper," as some indeed call the
"Middle Distance." The present writer, while not so limiting the Hill,
has omitted both Burch Hill to the south and the stretches toward
Webatuck to the north, which lie in other towns.

Just a word about neighborhood character. There is no especial character
localized in the Wing's Corners neighborhood. The central territory has
been fully described in this book, and especially in the chapters on
"The Common Mind," and "Practical Differences and Resemblances." "The
North End" is the most isolated of any neighborhood included within the
Hill population. Its families are less directly derived from Quaker
stock. The older Quaker families once living there have disappeared. It
is a genial, kindly, chatty neighborhood, without the exalted sense of
past importance or of present day prestige which affects the manners of
"Quaker Hill Proper." It has, moreover, none of the Irish-American
residents, and until recently no New York families. The seven family
groups resident in these fifteen houses have been long acquainted, and
have become used to one another. A kindly, tolerant feeling prevails.
Gossip is not forbidden. Standards of conduct are not stretched upon
high ideals, and a preference for enjoyments shows itself in a greater
leisure and a laxer industry than in the central portion of the Hill.

The greater distance from the railway also forbids some of the
activities of "Quaker Hill Proper." The milk wagon which in 1893-1899
was driven each day from Site 1 to the railway, gathering up the milk
cans on the successive farms, has been discontinued, and in winter the
road between Sites 15 and 21 is often blocked with snow for weeks. The
resident at Site 3 has for about twenty years maintained a
slaughter-house and a wagon for the sale of meat, using his land for
fatting cattle and sheep, and selling the meat along two routes. The
resident at Site 15 maintains a fish-wagon, buying his fish at the
railways and selling at the houses along selected routes, through the
summer. The other residents follow the diversified farming, based on
grazing, which in this country includes fatting of calves and pigs,
raising of poultry and other small agricultural industries. One family
only in this neighborhood takes boarders in the summer.

The peculiar religious character of Quaker Hill had by 1880 drawn in its
margins to "Quaker Hill Proper," though the population in these outlying
neighborhoods had a passive acquiescence in it. They still respond to
the activities which are centered in the focal neighborhood. Of
themselves, none of these neighborhoods originates any religious

In this connection mention should be made of the Connecticut
neighborhood known as Coburn, in which a certain relation to Quaker Hill
has always been maintained. It is not here regarded as a Quaker Hill
neighborhood. Its characteristics are those of Connecticut, and its
traditions are not Quaker, in a pure sense; but Quaker Hill has
influenced it not a little, religiously. In Coburn remains a measurable
deposit of Quaker Hill population.

Among the changes wrought by the railroad was the introduction of new
social elements into the community. The Quaker population had become
divided into rich and poor, but all were of the same general stock. The
parents of all had the same experience to relate. Their fathers had come
to Quaker Hill in the early or middle part of the eighteenth century,
had endured together the hardships of pioneer days, had known the
"unity" of Quaker discipline for one hundred years, and had held loyally
to the ideas and standards of Quakerism.

With the approach of the railroad came Irish laborers, who settled first
in the valley below, generally in the limits of Pawling village, and
later came on the Hill as workers on the farms in the new forms of dairy
industry to which the farmers were stimulated by the railroad. This
immigration continued from 1840 until 1860. In that time, a period of
about twenty years, there came laborers for almost all the farmers on
the Hill. I am informed that in the decade following the Civil War the
work on all the farms, "from Wing's corner to the North End," was done
by young Irishmen.

The first Irishmen of this immigration whose names appear upon the
tax-lists of the town of Pawling are Owen and Patrick Denany, who are
assessed upon one hundred acres in 1845, the land upon which they first
settled being in the western part of the town. These two brothers came
before the railroad was extended to Pawling, in 1840. In 1867 Patrick
moved to Quaker Hill and bought a place, midway between Sites 128 and
131. Thomas Guilshan in 1858 and years following was taxed upon nine
acres, the land upon which his widow still lives, at Site 93. John Brady
lived for years at Site 71, and in a house now removed except for traces
of a cellar, about fifty feet southeast of the Akin Free Library, lived
Charles Kiernan. Among the earliest Irish Catholics came James Cullom
and Margaret, his wife, who acquired land at Site 34. Other names of the
earlier Irish generations are Hugh Clark, who acquired land at Site 116,
James Rooney, Fergus Fahey, James Doyle, Kate Leary, James Hopper, who
settled in Pawling or Hurd's Corner, and David Burns, who became a
landowner at Site 117.

The Irish Catholics early differentiated into two classes, only one of
which, with their children, remains to the present day. There were the
"loose-footed fellows," who followed the railroad, worked for seasons on
the farms, drifted on with the renewal of demand for railroad laborers,
and disappeared from the Hill. Their places were taken, in the years
following 1880, by American laborers, and a very few other foreigners,
of whom I will speak below. The other class of Irish Catholics sought to
own land. The details given above indicate their promptness in acquiring
interest in the soil. From them has been recruited almost all the
present Catholic population of the Hill, which in 1905 amounted in all
to twenty-five households and one hundred persons.

Whereas the early immigration of Irish worked in all the dairies from
one end of the Hill to the other, the land owned by Irish-Americans now
is all in the central portion of the Hill, within a radius of one mile
from Mizzen-Top Hotel. Within this mile also all the Irish laborers
employed on the Hill are at work. They are employed about the Hotel, on
the places of the wealthier landowners of the Hill, and in such
independent trades as stone-mason, blacksmith or wheelwright. Only an
occasional Irish-American is found among the hired hands on the dairy

In contrast to the indifference of the original population of the town
to education, it is worthy of note that the grandson of an
Irish-American named above promises at this writing to be the first
youth born in the town to graduate from a higher institution of
learning, being in his last year at West Point.

The Irish population who have remained on the Hill are singularly
homogeneous, and thoroughly imbued with the spirit of the place. In the
chapter on "The Ideals of the New Quakerism," I have commented on Irish
acquisition of a character like that of the Quakers. The gentleness of
manner, the quickness of social sympathy and the industrious quietness
of the Quakers have come to be theirs. Yet they are loyal Catholics, and
with very few exceptions support their Church in the village regularly.
Many of them who have not conveyances have for years employed a
stage-driver to transport them on Sunday morning to St. Bernard's
Church. This church has been built by the Irish and Irish-Americans. At
the time of their coming in 1840-1850, there was no Catholic church, and
"if you wanted to hear mass said, you had to drive to Poughkeepsie."
Later, a tent was erected for a time, for the Catholic services, then a
Baptist church building was purchased. This building was destroyed by
fire about 1875, and the present structure in the village was erected.

The Catholic population of the Hill is now equal to the Quaker
population, there being of each twenty-five households; the old and the
new. But each has gone through striking changes since the Catholics
came, sixty years ago. "When I was a boy," says a prominent
Irish-American, "you could hardly see the road here for the carriages
and the dust, all of them Quakers going to the Old Meeting House, on
Sunday, or to Quarterly Meeting. But now they are all gone." The
religious faithfulness of those Friends of two generations ago has
descended upon no part of the population more fully than upon the
handful of Catholic families, who now drive to Pawling every Sunday in
great wagon-loads, while the members of the Quaker households have
closed their meeting houses forever.

Of the Irish-Catholic population here described only eleven are Irish
born. The rest, about ninety in number, are American born of Irish

The other elements who have been adopted into the Quaker Hill population
are small in number in comparison with the Irish. They are among the
working people, one Swiss, two Poles, who have bought small places at
Sites 42 and 75, respectively; and two New York ladies who about 1890
purchased places at Sites 41 and 35, who have become a strong influence,
being socially and religiously in sympathy with the original Quaker
population. Their influence is described in the chapter upon "The Common
Mind of the Mixed Community." Purchases of land have been made in the
years 1905-1907, more than in the preceding decade, by persons coming
from outside the Quaker Hill population, all of the buyers being from
New York City. These purchases are all upon the outer fringes of the
Hill territory, at Sites 107, 108, 111, 118, in the southwestern part,
and Sites 6 and 10 in the "North End," and in the Coburn neighborhood,
Sites 88 and others near the Meeting House, Site 139. The land in the
central section has changed hands, in the years 1890-1907, only through
the increase in the holdings of those who owned large estates before the
period of the Mixed Community.

[33] Descriptive and Historical Sociology, p. 118.



The hospitality of the Quakers is worthy of a treatise, not of the
critical order, but poetic and imaginative. It cannot be described in
mere social analysis. It has grown out of their whole order of life, and
expresses their religious view, as well as their economic habits. I
showed in Chapter VII, Part I, that the hospitality of the Friends
acquired religious importance from their belief that in every man is the
Spirit of God. With the simplicity, and direct adherence to a few
truths, which characterized the early Friends this belief was practiced,
and became one of the religious customs of the Society. They entertained
travellers, "especially such as were of the household of faith." They
made it a religious tenet to house and welcome "Friends travelling on
truth's account."

With equal directness they proceeded further to welcome every traveller,
and to endure often the intrusions of those who would not be desired as
guests, because they believed that such might be acting by the divine

The hospitality, therefore, of such a community is very beautiful. For
they have their ways of asserting themselves, in spite of
non-resistance. They open their doors, they set their table, with a
religious spirit. A thoroughness characterizes all their household
arrangements, a grace is given to all their housekeeping, which infuses
an indescribable content into the experiences of a guest in these homes.
Their hospitality to one another has been therefore a powerful enginery
for continuing and for extending the domains of Quakerism.

On Quaker Hill the living generations have known this hospitality in two
notable ways only, in the Quarterly Meetings, and in the transformed
hospitality of the boarding-house. The Quarterly Meeting is now gone
from the Hill. Both the Hicksite Meeting, which was "laid down" in 1885,
and the Orthodox Meeting, which ceased to meet in 1905, brought in their
day to the Hill, once in the year, an inundation of guests, who stayed
through the latter days of a week, and then went their way, to meet
quarterly throughout the year, but in other places, until the season
came again for Quaker Hill.

The Quaker Hill Quarterly was in August, and "after haying." "The roads
were full of the Quakers going up to the Meeting House." In every Quaker
home they were welcomed, whether they had written to announce their
coming, or whether they had not. All through the days of the Meeting,
they would renew the old ties, and discuss the passing of the Society,
the interests of the Kingdom, as they saw it, "the things of the

They meet no more. In the Quarterly Meeting, which comprises the Monthly
Meetings of an area comparable to Dutchess County, there are still some
Friends, and some meetings which are not "laid down." But they come no
more, at "Quarterly Meeting time" to Quaker Hill. Many of the older
members are dead. Of the younger members many have only a passive
adherence to Quakerism, only sufficient to excuse them from undesirable
worldliness, and from irksome responsibility in other religious bodies.

The hospitality of the old Quaker assemblings has passed over into the
business of boarding city people. The same table is set, the same
welcome given; but to the paid guest.

The passing of the old hospitality of the Friends was illustrated in the
years of the writer's residence on the Hill, in the person of an old
peddler, known as Charles Eagle. It had been the ancient custom to
entertain any and every wayfarer; and Eagle journeyed from South to
North about once a month in the warmer seasons, for many years. He had
enjoyed the entertainment of the Quakers, following the ancient line of
their settlements along the Oblong, and stopping overnight in their
ample, kindly households. He carried a pack on his back and another
large bundle in his hand. His pace was slow, like that of an ox, but
untiring and unresting, hour after hour. His person, sturdy and short,
was clothed in overall stuff, elaborately patched and mended. At first
sight it seemed to be patched from use and age; but closer inspection
showed that the patches were deliberately sewed on the new material. He
wore a straw hat in summer, decorated with a bright ribbon, in which
were flowers in season. He wore also a red wig, tied under his chin with
a ribbon. His face was like that of an Indian, with broad cheek-bones
and small shifting eyes.

Eagle was French, and professed to be a refugee, a person of interest to
foreign monarchs. On the inner wrapping of his pack was written large,
"Vive le Napoleon! Vive la France! Vive!" He had little hesitation about
speaking of himself, though always with stilted courtesy, and always

He made a study of astronomy, and every night would ask his hostess,
with much apology but firm insistence, for a pitcher of water, and for
the privilege that he might retire early to his room, open the window
and view the stars. Strange to say, in this he was not merely eccentric;
for his reading was of the latest books on the science, and he exchanged
with Akin Hall Library a Young's Astronomy for a Newcomb's, in 1898. He
accompanied the presentation of the later book, in which was the
author's name inscribed with a note to Mr. Eagle, with a demonstration
of a theory of the Aurora Borealis.

Eagle never tried to sell his goods on the Hill, and indeed it is
doubtful if he carried them for any other purpose than to conceal his
real commodities, which were watches. Of these he carried a good
selection of the better and of the cheaper sorts, all concealed in the
center of his pack, among impossible dry goods and varied fancy wares.

An attempt was made to rob him, or at least to annoy him, by some young
men; and he shot one of his assailants. For this offence he was, after
trial, sent to the Asylum for the Criminal Insane.

His earlier journeys over the Hill found him a welcome guest at the
Quaker homes. But the substitution of boarding for the ancient
hospitality made the peddler unwelcome; and he passed through without
stopping in his later years.

The Quarterly Meeting of the Society of Friends was the annual
culmination of the hospitality of the Hill population. Coming in August,
"after haying," it was for a century and a half the great assembly of
the people of the Hill, and of their kindred and friends; and until the
Orthodox Meeting ceased to meet, in 1905, there was Quarterly Meeting in
the smaller Meeting House. The old hospitality was never diminished by
the Quakers as long as their meetings continued. Even though the same
house were filled with paying boarders, the family retreated to the
attic, the best rooms were devoted to the "Friends travelling on truth's
account;" and the same house saw hospitality of the old sort extended
for one week to the religious guests, and of the new sort faithfully set
forth for the guests who paid for it by the week.

The Quakeress and daughter of Quakers has produced the summer
boarding-house; which is no more than the ample Quaker home, organized
to extend the thrifty hospitality continuously for four months, for good
payment in return, which has always been extended to Friends and
visiting relatives for longer or shorter periods in the past, as an act
of household grace.

The Quaker Hill woman is a good housekeeper. The substantial farmhouses
on the Hill are outward signs of excellent homes within. The table is
well spread, with a measured abundance, which satisfies but does not
waste. The rooms are each furnished forth in spare and righteous
daintiness, over which nowadays is poured, in occasional instances, a
pretty modern color, timidly laid on, which does not remove the prim
Quakerness. Ventures in the use of decoration, however, have been crude
in most cases, and the results, so far as they have been effected by the
taste of the woman of the Hill, are incongruous in color, and
ill-assorted in design. It is in house-furnishing that the tendency of
the daughter of the Quakers shows the most frequent variation.
Occasionally one sees the outcropping of a really artistic
spirit--peculiarly refreshing because so rare--which has only in a
woman's mature years ventured to indulge in a bit of happy color; but
the venture if successful is always reserved and simple; and the most of
such ventures are of unhappy result.

The housekeeping arts have reached a high degree of perfection on the
Hill. Cooking is there done with a precision, economy and tastefulness
in sharp contrast to the non-aesthetic manner in which the Quakers
conduct most occupations. It is, moreover, a kind of cooking after the
Quaker manner, at once frugal and abundant. For of all people, the
Quakers have learned to manage generously and economically.

The outcome of this housekeeping is the diversion of much of the
business energy of the Hill to the "keeping of boarders." Seven of the
old Quaker families, and one Irish Catholic household are devoted to the
keeping of boarders; five of them being supported in the main by this
business. Of these five families, however, four reside upon farms of
more than one hundred and fifty acres apiece. These families sell at
certain times in the year, a certain quantity of milk, or make butter,
or fatten calves, but not as their central means of support.

To these farmhouses come year after year the same paying guests, each
house having its own constituency, built up through thirty years of
patient and unbroken service. The charm of the Quaker character, the
excellence of the cooking and the enjoyable character of the other
factors of the household, bring patrons back; while the benefits of the
elevation and pure air are, to city dwellers, material returns for the
moneys expended. For this board, the price charged is, in the Irish
Catholic household, five dollars per week; in one of the oldtime Quaker
houses, six dollars, and in the others from eight to ten or twelve
dollars per week.

The season in which boarders can be secured in paying numbers is a
period extending from June fifteenth to October first, with the houses
filled only in the months of July and August. For this period, which is
one continued strain upon the housekeepers and their aids, preparation
begins as early as the month of March. The housework is generally done
by the women of the family, with some employed help, of an inferior
sort. The horses and carriages on the farm must be used for the
transportation of guests, and for hire to those who drive for pleasure.
On one farm sheep are kept; though most of the boarding-houses buy their
meat supplies of the dealers mentioned below.

Of late years the help employed in these boarding-houses, in addition to
members of the family, has come to be negroes from Culpepper County,
Virginia. These employees come each spring and return in the fall.

The one Irish Catholic boarding-house is for the entertainment of the
hired men on the lower part of the Hill, near the Hotel. It is
maintained throughout the year, with a varying number of guests, by a
woman ninety years of age, who in addition to the management, does much
of the hard work herself.

The conservatism of the Hill families is shown in the fact that the
boarding-house business has never been extended. No house has ever been
erected for that purpose alone; but the present business of that sort
is carried on in the old Quaker homes, each receiving only as many paid
guests as it was used to receive of its hospitable duty, when the
Quarterly Meeting brought Friends from afar, once in the year.

Mizzen-Top Hotel is perhaps an exception, if, indeed, a large hotel,
with quarters for two hundred and fifty guests, and at prices ranging
from three dollars per day up, be an exception. It has grown out of the
same conditions which transformed the farmhouses into boarding-houses,
save that it has never been managed at a profit, and they never at a
loss. It is, however, an institution by itself, and will be treated in
another place.

The Mizzen-Top Hotel has always been a sober institution, influenced
thereto by the pleasureless spirit of the Hill. Baseball, tennis, and
golf in their times have had vogue there, but under every management it
has been hard to arouse and maintain active interest in outdoor or
indoor sports. The direct road to Hammersley Lake, formerly called
Quaker Hill Pond, has made possible a moderate indulgence in
carriage-driving. The laying out of the golf links in 1897 set going
that dignified sport, just as the Wayside Path in 1880 occasioned some
mild pedestrianism. But the Hotel diminishes rather than increases in
its play-activities; and only games of cards retain a hold upon the
guests, who prefer the piazza, the croquet ground, the tennis court, and
the golf links in rapidly diminishing proportion.

Intemperance was common in earlier times, and drinking was universal.
Every household made and stored for winter many barrels of cider. Rum
and wine were freely bought at the store. Their use in the harvest field
was essential to the habits of agriculture which preceded the times of
the mower and reaper. This free use of cider, with accompanying
intemperance, survives in only two houses on Quaker Hill.

Miss Taber's account, in "Some Glimpses of the Past," describes the
drinking habits of the older period: "It was customary to have cider on
the table at every meal, the ladies would have their tea, but most of
the men drank cider largely, many to excess, consequently there were
great quantities made in the fall and stored in the cellars during the
winter. A large farmer would lay out a great deal of work, gathering
from ten to twenty cartloads of apples, hooping and cleaning barrels,
and many ground and pressed their own cider, then the large casks were
drawn to and placed in the cellars. This usually occupied a large part
of the month of October. In the spring a portion of the hard cider would
be taken to a distiller, and made into cider brandy to be used in the
haying and harvest field, at sheep washings, butchering, raisings,
shearings and on many occasions. Some was always on the sideboard and
often on the table. In most households there were sideboards well
furnished with spirits, brandy, homemade wine, metheglin, etc., which
were offered to guests. It was a fashion or custom to offer a drink of
some kind whenever a neighbor called.

"My grandfather being obliged to have so many men at least two months
each year became disgusted with the custom of furnishing so much cider
and spirits to the men in the field, as many of them would come to the
house at supper time without any appetite and in a quarrelsome mood.
There would be wrestlings and fighting during the evening and the chain
in the well could be heard rattling all night long. So one year,
probably about 1835 or '36, he decided that he would do it no longer.
His brother and many of his neighbors tried to dissuade him and
prophesied that he would not be able to get sufficient help to secure
his crops, but he declared he would give up farming before he would
endure it any longer, and announced when securing his extra help for
that summer that he would furnish no cider or spirits in the field, but
that coffee and other drinks would be carried out and that every man
should have a ration of spirits at each meal. Most of the men he had had
in past years came back and seemed to be glad to be out of the way of
temptation. The next year he dispensed with the ration at meal times,
and the custom grew among his neighbors with surprising rapidity; it was
but a few years when it became general, with a few exceptions, where the
farmer himself was fond of it, until to-day such a thing is not heard
of, and in fact, the farmer, like the railroads and other large
corporations, do not care to employ a man that is in the habit of using
spirits at all."

In the years 1890-1905 there were only two families on the Hill which
followed primitive custom in "putting in cider" into the cellar in
quantity for the winter. In five more a very small quantity was kept. In
the other cases it was regarded as immoral to use the beverage. The
writer was only once offered a drink of alcoholic beverage in six years'
residence on the Hill.

In respect to the standard of living which is regarded as necessary to
the maintenance of respect and social position, the Hill exhibits two
strata of the population. The city people, and the farmers and laborers.
The former class, besides the Hotel and its cottages, comprise seven
households, who have formed their ways of living upon the city standard.
The others, resident all the year round upon the Hill, live after a
standard common to American country-people generally of the better

The economic ideas and habits are in no way peculiar to the Hill. There
survive in a few old persons some primitive industrial habits. One old
lady, now about ninety, amuses herself with spinning, knitting and
weaving; keeping alive all the primitive processes from the shearing of
sheep in her son's field to the completed garment. Axe-helves are still
made by hand in the neighborhood.

The practical arts of the community are agriculture, especially the
cultivation of grass for hay, cooking and general housekeeping, and the
entertainment of paid guests, as "boarders" in farmhouse and hotel.
There is in addition on one farm, at Site No. 3, a slaughter-house, at
which beef and mutton and pork are prepared for market, the animals
being bought, pastured, fattened and killed on the place, and the meat
delivered to customers, especially in the summer months, by means of a
wagon, which makes its journey twice a week, over the length of the Hill
and in the country eastward.

There is also a fish-wagon owned and maintained by the resident at Site
No. 15, which buys fish during the year and maintains by means of a
wagon a similar trade. These two are the only food supply businesses
maintained on the Hill.

Economic opportunity has always appealed strongly to the Quaker Hill man
and woman. In 1740 John Toffey settled at the crossing of ways which is
called "Toffey's Corners," and began to make hats. Other industries

In recent years, in almost every Quaker house boarders have been taken,
and a better profit has been made than from the sale of milk. For
twenty-five years the Mizzen-Top Hotel, accommodating two hundred and
fifty guests, has represented notably this response to opportunity. The
beautiful scenery, which the Quaker himself does not appreciate, because
he has educated himself out of the appreciation of color and form, has
offered him an opportunity of profit which he has been prompt and
diligent to seize. All through the summer every one of the six largest
Quaker homesteads is filled with guests. The fact cited above that in
the summer there comes to the Hill a greater transient population than
dwells there through the year, a population of guests, illustrates this
lively economic alertness.

The emigration from the Hill since 1840 of so many persons, notably the
younger and more ambitious, is in itself a token of this response. The
railroad brought the opportunity; the ambitious accepted it; many whole
families have disappeared. Their strong members emigrated; the weaker
stock died out. The Merritt, Vanderburgh, Irish, Wing, Sherman, Akin,
and other families offer examples. In the place of those who departed
have come others, to fill the total population. There were in 1905 on
the Hill twenty-five old families with seventy-five persons, and
twenty-five Irish Catholic families with one hundred persons.

The response to economic opportunity has often been too keen, and the
attempt too grasping. In 1891 wealthy New Yorkers offered for certain
farms so located as to command beautiful views, prices almost double
what they are worth for farming. The reply was a demand in every case of
one thousand dollars more than was offered; and the result was--no sale.

Land is valued, though few sales are made, at $1,000 per acre, near the
Hotel. The acre numbered 42, one mile from Mizzen-Top, on Map II, was
sold in 1893 to a laboring man for $250. At 53, land was sold in 1903
for $700 per acre. At 52, three acres were sold by sisters to a brother
in 1895, the asking-price being $1,000 per acre, and the price paid $800
per acre. For farming, this land is worth $50 and $75 per acre. Four
miles further inland as good recently sold for $10 per acre. Quaker Hill
has not neglected its economic opportunities.

Nearness to the soil has, under the influences of Quaker ethics and
economic ambition, cultivated in this population a patient and steadfast
industry, which expresses itself in the milk dairy, a form of farming by
its nature requiring early hours and late, with all the day between
filled by various duties. I have shown above that this industry is
losing its hold on the farmers of the Hill, but for two generations it
has been the distinctive type of labor on the Hill. To rise at four or
even earlier in the morning and to prepare the milk, to deliver it at
the station, four to eight miles away, to attend to the wants of cows
from twenty to one hundred in number; to prepare the various
food-products, either by raising from the soil, or by carting from the
railroad,--these activities filled, ten years ago, the lives of one
hundred and four of the adult males of the community; and these
activities at present fill the time of sixty of the adult males of the

While "the milk business" is a declining industry, other things are not
less engrossing. The land must be tilled, and is tilled. Hay is the
greatest crop, and the mere round of the seasons brings for a community
used to agriculture a discipline and a course of labor, which make life
regular and industrious.

Farming, as stated above, is carried on with a view to the production of
milk for the city market. It is a laborious and exacting occupation. The
dairy cow, generally of the Holstein stock, or with a strain of Holstein
in her blood, is the most common variety; though the grass of the Hill
is so good that very rich milk is produced by "red cow, just plain
farmer's cow," as the local description runs; and the demands of the
middlemen have brought in some Jersey cattle, which are desired, because
of the greater proportion of cream they produce. The largest profit from
the "making of milk" is secured by those farmers who keep as many cows
as can be fed from the land owned by them. But the more ambitious
farmers rent land, and in a few cases on a small farm keep so many
cattle that they have to buy even hay and corn. It is necessary for the
farmer, in order to meet the demands of the city market, to feed his
cattle on grains not raised on the Hill. One hundred years ago the lands
of the Hill were planted in wheat, rye, corn and other grains, but
to-day the farmers buy all grains, except corn, of which an increasing
quantity is being raised, and oats, of which they do not raise enough
for the use of their horses. There are no silos used on the Hill, the
city milkmen having a standing objection to the milk of cows fed on

The labor problem created by the milk business is an acute one. One man
can milk not more than twenty cows, and he is a stout farm-hand who can
daily milk more than twelve or fifteen. As a farmer must keep between
twenty and forty cows to do justice to his acreage, on the average Hill
farm, there must be at least two men, and often there must be five or
six men employed on the farm. To secure this number of capable men, to
keep them, and to pay them are hard problems. Their wages have risen in
the past twelve years, from fourteen dollars a month and board to
twenty-three dollars and board; or for a married man, who has house
rent, wood, and time to cut it, garden and time to tend it, and a quart
of milk a day, the wages have risen from twenty-eight to thirty-five
dollars a month.

These men are recruited from a class born in the country, and of a
drifting, nomadic spirit; and from the city, the latter a sinister,
dangerous element, whom the farmers fear and suspect. On a large farm,
with five men in employ, the farmer may expect to replace one man each
month; and to replace his whole force at least once a year. So
changeable are the minds of this class of laborers.

Those who are married are somewhat more stable; but of the others it is
asserted by the farmers that out of their wages they save nothing.

There has been a rise in the price secured by the farmers for their milk
in the past ten years, but it has been only for limited periods. The
variation was from 1.9 cents and 2 cents, the price in 1895-98, to 3
cents, the price paid in the winter of 1907. In the summer the price is
always lower. The farmers have no control over the price paid them for
milk, nor have they control over the prices to be paid for labor,
though of course in this matter, there is room for a certain skill in
bargaining and for the lowering of the total wages paid on the farm
through the skillful employment of the cheaper kinds of hands.

There is also a difference in the price paid for milk by "the Milk
Factory," a plant established at the railway in the past ten years, in
each dairy-town. This establishment takes milk from the poorer dairies
under conditions less exacting than are laid down by some buyers, and in
consequence pays a price correspondingly lower than the market rates for
milk and the higher prices secured by the better farmers.

One energetic farmer, who has in the past five years had large farms to
manage, on hire, or on shares, has prepared milk for hospital use in the
city, meeting the exactions of inspection, and the prescribed care of
stables, animals, workmen and receptacles in a way intolerable to the
average farmer. He receives in return a price twenty per cent above the
market rate.

The effect of the above conditions is seen in the fact that in the
twelve years under study nine owners of large farms have "given up the
milk business," have sold their cows, or keeping them have made butter
and fatted calves for market. The profits to be made in dairy-farming
are so small, unless the farmer conduct his dairy in an exceptional
manner, or on a very large scale, that the average man on the Hill
cannot continue it. Indeed, the average farmer on the Hill is unable
through lack of vitality or incapacity for application, to conduct any
business, successfully, against competition. The state of mind of such
men, in the worst cases, is illustrated by the remark of one of them who
approached a successful dairyman, saying: "I am going to cease to make
milk for the city market, and I thought I would come to you and find out
something about the way to make butter--not the best butter, such as you
make, but a sort of second-class butter."

[34] Mr. E. I. Hurd is my authority for the following
statement. "In the total income of the farmers of Pawling, nine dollars
are paid them for milk for every dollar in payment for other products."



Quaker Hill has always been a community with great powers of
assimilation. The losses suffered by emigration have been repaired by
the genius of the community for socializing. Whoever comes becomes a
loyal learner of the Quaker Hill ways. I think this is a matter of
imitation. Personality has here made a solemn effort to perfect itself
for a century and a half; and the characters of Richard Osborn, James J.
Vanderburgh, Anne Hayes, David Irish and his daughter, Phoebe Irish
Wanzer, ripened into possession of at least amazing power of example. I
must be sparing of illustration here, where too rich a store is at hand.
I will offer only this striking fact, observed by all who know the Hill:
the Irish emigrant and his American-born children, of whom there are now
as many as remain of the original Quakers, have come to be as good
Quakers in character--though still loyal Catholics in dogma--as if they
said "thee and thou," and wore drab. They are peaceable, gentle folk,
sober and inoffensive; and the transforming influence of Quaker
character is seen in certain of them in a marked degree.

The same statement may be made of the pervasive example of the Quaker
character upon other areas of population; servants who come from the
city, summer guests, artistic people who love the Hill for its beauty
and suggestiveness, ministers and other public teachers who come hither.

The area to the southeast, called "Coburn," settled to a degree by those
who have worked on the Hill in times past as employees, is touched with
the same manner. Its meeting house, erected over sixty years ago, even
retains the Quaker way of seating the men and women apart.

The Quaker Hill Conference, now in its ninth year, is another
illustration of the charm and reach of the gentle influence of the
Quaker Hill ideal upon personal character.

Suggestion also explains much. In such a social whole, manners and
customs are fixed. The newcomer is often fresh, ingenuous, and sometimes
intrusive. Little by little he becomes socialized. Ways of action are
fixed for him, and a range of performance comes to be his. In harmony
with this range, suggestion is very fertile; but one learns after a time
that there is a limit to its force beyond which individuals will not go.
Suggestion, to be effective upon the many, must come from the sources
which embody the community's religious and economic ideal.

Ideas, once broached, are usually, if they contemplate action, opposed,
at least by inertness; but after a time they reappear as if native to
the minds which would have none of them by reasonable approaches. This
process is accelerated if the suggestion begins to travel from mind to
mind. Some individuals are less slow than others; and the leaders of
Quaker Hill thinking have always been able to work by the plan of
academic proposal--to avoid rejection--followed by incitement of popular
action in particular quarters. Quaker Hill cannot bear to be divided;
and that which comes to be successful in one quarter soon comes to be
universal. Things can be done by social suggestion which could never be
accomplished by appeal or rational discussion.

The word that has formed the social mind of Quaker Hill has been, not
"the Spirit," not "the inner light," but "orthodoxy" or "plainness." For
this community, it must be remembered, had no great thinkers. It
discouraged study, stiffened reason in formulas and dissolved thinking
in vision. To its formulas the Hill has been exceedingly devoted. He
who upheld them was accepted, and he who rejected them, as well as he
who ignored them, was to the early Quaker Hill as if he did not exist.

This shibboleth has indeed always been religious. Even to-day the way of
direct access to the common heart is a religious one. Catholic as well
as Protestant, Quaker no more and no less than "the world's people,"
welcome religious approaches, respect confessions, and believe
experiences. Nothing can assemble them all which does not originate in
religion and clothe itself in religious sanction. History is religious
history. Business prosperity is approved when the prosperity has
followed religious profession.

I do not mean to say that there are not other symbols than those of
religion. Prosperity has spoken its shibboleths as well as orthodoxy.
"Business is business" on Quaker Hill. Not "to save money" is an
unforgiven sin--and a rare one!

Much has been done in forming the common mind of Quaker Hill by
antipathies and sympathies, chiefly again of a religious order modified
by the economic. The community is markedly divided into rich and poor,
and into orthodox and not-orthodox. These have no inclination one to
another. Each group has its symbols and pass-words, and while
neighborly, and answering to certain appeals to which the community has
always responded, each resident of the Hill lives and dwells in his own
group and has no expectation of moving out of it. So long as a man stays
in his group he is, by a balancing of antipathy and sympathy, respected
and valued. If he venture to be other than what he was born to be, he
suffers all the social penalties of a highly organized community.

Authority, working along the lines of belief and dogma, has almost
irresistible force for the Quaker Hill social mind. A visitor to the
Hill said "These are an obedient people." Any barrenness of the Hill is
to be attributed rather to the lack of leaders who could speak to the
beliefs and in harmony with the dogmas, than to lack of willingness to
obey authority. From the past the families on the Hill inherit their
willingness respectively to command and to obey. This is true socially
of certain families and religiously of others. That to-day some are not
led is due solely to the decadence of initiative in the households
which, by reason of wealth or dogmatic rectitude, inherit and claim the
first place.

It was said above that Quaker Hill has shown great power of assimilating
foreign material, and of causing newcomers to be possessed of the
communal spirit. The agency which from the first accomplished this was
religious idealization, embodied in the meeting, the dress, language and
manners of Friends. Generally the Meeting was recruited from births, and
members were such by birthright. In former times the community and the
Meeting were one. This assimilating of foreign material by social
imitation to the Quaker type, and into organic subjection to the Quaker
Hill community, was wrought by six agencies. They were language,
manners, costume, amusements, worship, and morals. In each of these the
Quakers were peculiar. In the use of the "plain language" the Quakers
had a machinery of amazing and subtle fascination for holding the
attention, purifying the speech, and disciplining the whole deportment
of the young and the newcomer. No one has ever been addressed with the
use of his first name by grave, sweet ladies and elderly saints, without
its beginning an influence and exerting a charm he could not resist; the
more so that the Quaker in so doing is guarding his own soul, rather
than seeking to save his hearer.

The grave manners of the Quakers, both in meeting and without, are
framed upon their belief that all days are holy, and all places sacred.
Their long and triumphant fight against amusements is a tribute to the
gravity of life. The contest to which I have elsewhere referred for pure
morals, in matters of sex, of property and of speech, was a victorious

In all these matters Quaker Hill was a population socialized by
religion. Central to it all was the worship of the Meeting on First Day,
and on other occasions; and the great solemnity of the annual Quarterly
Meeting. Fascinated by that "silence that can be felt," men came from
far. They would come as readily to-day. They went away under the
domination of that idea of pure and spiritual faith, which kept a whole
houseful of men silent for an hour in communion.

As I have looked into this matter it has seemed to me that the induction
to be drawn from the history of Quaker Hill is this: Religion was a true
organizing power for this social population. Whatever the meeting
determinedly strove to do it accomplished. If it had tried to do more it
would have succeeded.

This was a gain, moreover, without corresponding losses; a total net
gain in all the moralities. The whole area on which this meeting exerted
its influence was by it elevated to a higher moral and social tone, and
organized into a communal whole, characterized by a loftier and cleaner
standard than that of surrounding populations.

Why, then, did it die out? First, because of the bareness of its
worship, the lack of music, color and form; through which it lost in the
nineteenth century some of its best families. Then through dogmatic
differences, of no interest to human beings, it lost its primacy in the
community and so its authority.

In the chapter on "Ideals of the Quakers," I have dwelt upon their
dramatization of life. They "made believe" that "plainness" was
sanctity. They fixed their minds upon the commonplace as the ideal. It
is probable that the early population were men and women of no such
talents as to disturb this conviction; and the variations from plainness
in the direction of gayety were sternly denounced as immoral. Also the
struggle with the wilderness occupied and exhausted the powers of the
exceptional as well as of the average man. But when with wealth came
leisure, there were born sons of the Quakers who rebelled against the
discipline of life that repressed variation, who demanded
self-expression in dress, in language, in tastes, and in pleasures.
Gradually but surely, as the outside world was brought nearer, these
persons were influenced in their restiveness by books and examples, by
imitation and other stimuli from new sources, until they cast off in
their minds the Quaker ideal of plainness. To be ordinary no longer
seemed to them a way of goodness. They were oppressed and stifled by the
ban of the meeting upon variation. And though the ideal of plainness has
subtly ruled them even in their rebellion and freedom, it has done so by
its negative power, in that the community has never furnished
exceptional education. The positive dominion of the meeting broken, the
negative "plainness" of the community rules all the children of the Hill
to this day. So few are the sources of individual variation furnished,
in the form of books, music, education, art, that no son or daughter of
Quaker Hill has attained a place of note even in New York State. The
ideal of "plainness" has been an effectual restraint.



The common mind has been formed to a great degree by strong
personalities; for the common mind has held an ideal of perfection in a
person. The force which at the beginning assembled its elements was
personal. The type represented by George Fox, as interpreted by Barclay,
embodied this influence. In all the history of the place response to
strong personality has been immediate and general. The past is a history
of names. William Russell led the community in erecting a Meeting House,
and then a second one--which still stands. Ferriss, the early settler,
located the meeting house on his land, as later Osborn located the
Orthodox Meeting House, at the Division, on his land. Judge Daniel Akin,
in the early Nineteenth Century, was a leader of the economic activities
of this Quaker community, then differentiating themselves from the
religious. So, too, his nephew, Albert Akin, in the last half of that
century was a leader, gathering up the money of the wealthy farmers to
invest in railroads, founding the Pawling Bank, the Mizzen-Top Hotel,
and launching Akin Hall, with its literary and religious basis.

David Irish, the preacher of the Hicksite Meeting in the middle of the
nineteenth century was leader and exponent of the most representative
phases of Quakerism, for at that time it was still possible for the
business and the religion of Quakerism to be united in the minds of the
majority; Unitarian Quakerism was the result, and of this David Irish
was the ideal embodiment.

The respect paid by the community to leadership is shown in the place
assigned to Admiral John L. Worden, commander of the "Monitor," who
married a Quaker Hill woman, Olive Toffey, spent the summers of his
life on the Hill, and is buried in the Pawling Cemetery. There was
universal pride in his charming personality, interest in his sayings,
and no pious condemnation of his warlike deeds. His nautical names of
the high points on the Hill have been generally accepted; so that the
Hill rides high above all surrounding lands, her heights labelled like
the masts of a gallant ship: "Mizzen-Top," "Main-Top," "Tip-Top."

There is indeed by contrast a corresponding unwillingness to be
impressed by great personality. The residence of Washington with his
troops in the neighborhood left no impression on the records of the
Meeting, though he turned out the worshippers and filled the place with
sick soldiers; no impression upon the devout tradition, except the story
of his being seen once in the woods alone on his knees in prayer; and no
impression upon the social tradition, except the cherished claim of one
family that he used their residence as his headquarters. Washington was
the embodiment of all that this community opposed, and he was ignored.

Another instance of grudging allegiance was the following given to a New
York broker, who set out to build a modern schoolhouse, and was
permitted only by a packed school-meeting, and by paying two-thirds of
the expense himself, to build in 1892 the comely structure at 43, with
which Quaker Hill is content.

The same resident was discouraged from further acts of public service,
in 1894, by the declining of his offer made to the town of Pawling, to
build one mile of macadam for every mile built by the town. He had
constructed in 1893, at 113, a sample piece of such road, covering at
his own expense an ancient sink-hole in the highway, through which
during two months in every year for a century and a half Quaker Hill had
wallowed; and he desired with this object-lesson to convince the
town,--to win the support of at least his neighbors,--to the proposal
to transform the highways into good roads. But there was never a
response, and even his neighbors on the Hill, who cheerfully enjoy his
smooth stretch of stone road over the ancient wallow of their fathers,
manifested no active appreciation of his generosity. The generous
resident had purchased a stone-crusher and other necessaries for the
work; but they have been used only on private grounds.

The most conspicuous instance of following leadership in recent times
has been the measured devotion given by the community to the activities
which have centered in Akin Hall and in the institution known as Hill
Hope, on Site 35. The leaders in this activity have been themselves
under the influence of New York city ideas. Two of the three most
conspicuous persons are of this neighborhood, but have resided in New
York for years, returning to the Hill for the summers. The third is a
New Yorker by birth, and trained in Presbyterian religious experience
and especially in charitable activity.

Akin Hall has in the years 1892-1905 expressed the leadership in
religious confession and worship, after the forms of the Reformed
Christian order, and has embodied this leadership in the conventional
activities of a vigorous country parish.

For ten years Hill Hope, supported personally by the third member of
this group of leaders, was, until it was closed in 1904, a country home
for working girls. By a liberal policy it became also a center of much
interest and of a pervasive influence to the neighborhood. Meetings of a
social and devotional character were held there, to which the residents
were pleased to come, and in which the young women from the city met and
mingled with the Protestant residents of the Hill, especially with those
of the Quaker stock. The influence of Hill Hope was very marked, and its
power in representing to people of a narrow experience the ideals of a
richer and broader life was obvious to any one who saw the place it held
in the interests of the whole resident community.

These influences, thus compounded of the humanitarian, the
liberal-orthodox and the devotional, but in all things confessedly
religious, exerted themselves for the ten years named, unbroken. The
death of one member of this group of leaders, the head of one of the
three households peculiarly identified with its work, appreciably
weakened the group. But in the thirteen years of its influence, it
united the whole community in the formation of a church, to some of
whose services came all the Protestant population; in whose membership
were representatives of all groups of the Protestant residents; and
which was able at least once a year to call the Catholics also together
at Christmas festivities.

To this group of leaders a guarded, though at times cordial following
was given by Orthodox Friends, the Hicksite group, the farmer class,
laborers, Catholics and Protestants, and summer people. It was generally
inert and negative in spirit, seldom actively loyal. At its best it was
willing that leaders should lead and pay the price, and be more admired
than upheld. At its worst it was alert to private and blind to public
interests, peevish of change, incapable of foresight.

I do not think that Quaker Hill people have much expectation of benefit
from social life. They are habitually skeptical of its advantages,
though eager to avail themselves of those advantages when proven. Almost
every person on the Hill, however, is a member of some secret society,
to which he is drawn by anticipations of economic advantage, or of moral

Nor can I say that there is prompt or general reaction to wrongdoing,
either of one or of many. I might illustrate with two cases. In one a
rich man perverted a public trust, openly, to his own advantage; and a
conspiracy of silence hedged his wrong about. In the other, a youth
entered in one winter every house on the Hill in succession, and there
was no one to detect or to punish him.

The Hill does not exhibit the highest type of social response in the
recognition of impersonal evil, in the quest of knowledge, or in free
discussion. Almost two centuries of dogma-worship, with its
contemplation of selected facts, has made it now impossible to secure
from one thoroughly socialized in the spirit of the place the exact
truth upon any matter. It seems to be reserve which conceals it, but it
is rather the effect of continued perversion of the sense of right and
wrong, and indifference to knowledge for its own sake.

The ideal of the common mind of Quaker Hill is the practice of inner and
immaterial religion. It looks for the effects of certain dogmas, effects
expressed in emotions, convictions, experiences. The ideal contains no
thought of the community or of its welfare. It is purely individual,
internal and emotional.

It was expressed in the comment of one excellent representative citizen
upon another, "He does not seem to me to be the man he once was. He does
not say in meetings the things he used to say. He used to be very
helpful in his remarks." This was said at a time when the citizen
commented on was laboring heroically for a public improvement by which
the citizen speaking would chiefly be benefited.

The Quaker Hill man and woman desire to make money. They instinctively
love money, though not for any other purpose than saving. They cherish
no illusions of an unworldly sort about it. This is true of Quaker and
Catholic, laborer and summer resident. It is true of the small class of
cultivated intellectual-aesthetes, who might be expected to be less
mercenary. They all value money; but not for display, not for luxury,
scarcely for travel; not for books or the education of children. Quaker
Hill men and women would accumulate money, invest and manage it wisely
and live in respectable "plainness." This characteristic is written
largely over the whole social area. It is an instinct.

The emotional nature of this population has been by long-continued
application of an accepted discipline, economic and religious,
restrained and schooled. More beautiful personalities than some of the
Quaker and Irish women of the Hill, schooled in a discipline which
produces the most charming manners, the gentlest kindness, one may never
see. There is no cloud in the sky of these women's justice,
truthfulness, goodness. One may remember, even with them, a day of
anger, of indignation; but it was a storm restrained; the lightnings
were held in sure hands, and the attack was eminently just.

But this very discipline has resulted, in other persons, in an explosive
emotionality. One person suffers this explosion in a periodic lawsuit--a
rare action for the Hill; another in an almost insane family quarrel,
another in an occasional fury of futile violence, another in periods,
increasing in frequency as he grows older, of causeless and uncontrolled
anger, or extravagant grief; and when weightier occasion is lacking, in
torrents of language poured forth from the treasuries of an exhaustless
memory. The very serenity and placidity which Quaker worship and
industry produce in the true Quaker have resulted in the emotional ruin
of some, and in the subconscious volcanic state in others.

Strange to say, the immigrants, Irish and American, have in this
conformed to the better type; so that gentle manners, placidity of
character and restraint of emotion may be said to prevail among them.

As for judgment, on economic questions and matters of benevolence the
judgment of Quaker Hill people is sound. They use money sanely and with
wisdom. They act wisely in matters of poverty and need, or appeal on
behalf of the dependent. On other matters, outside the range of the
social discipline in which the community has been to school, not so much
can be said.

The judgment of the community is not determined by evidence in any other
matters than economic. The Quaker Hill mind works subjectively on the
lines of instincts and habits inherited and inbred. Auto-suggestion has
been a great force in this community. Men and women have had an
impression, "a leading," believed to come from the Divine Spirit, and
have acted upon it and have led others with them. So that the prevailing
determination of the social judgment has been by personal suggestion,
and the appeal of inner convictions, fortified by alleged divine
influence. It must be said that this is a disappearing habit. Even those
born Quakers, now that the Hicksite Meeting has been discontinued since
1885, and the Orthodox since 1903, and the Quarterly Meetings of both
societies have ceased to come to the Hill, do not so often see visions
or act upon "leadings." The influence of non-Quakers in the place has
been of late to quarantine such "leadings" and prevent social contagion.

Frugality is universal. Almost every resident laboring man has a bank
account. Indeed, these laborers have done more in saving than have the
farmers. But the tastes of all are simple. Clothing is never showy or
expensive, and housekeeping is carried on with the most sparing use of
purchased articles.

Cleanly most of the people of the Hill are, in person and in their care
of house and grounds, of carriages, horses and other properties. The
houses and barns are always freshly painted, and an appearance of
neatness pervades the community.

For reasons which I will mention in a later paragraph the men and women
trained under Quakerism are not orderly, either in the use of their time
or in the management of their labor, or in anything, save in the
discipline of their religion and in the economic system to which they
give themselves.

The community has grown in compassion since the days when Surgeon
Fallon's soldiers were starved and neglected in the Meeting House.
To-day I am sure no class of men in real need could appeal to the
community, or to any constituent group of it, in vain. The growth has
been along lines which, beginning in a group-compassion that has from
earliest days recompensed any poor member of the Meeting in his sudden
losses of property, have widened first to Quakers of other places, then
to other Christians, then to other men, and last of all to Quakers of
the other Quaker sect; and from Protestant to Catholic and Catholic to

Property seems to be sacred. Doors of houses and barns do not require
locks, but one winter there was a series of house-breakings, in which
almost every summer residence on the Hill was entered. Contents were
inspected, but nothing was stolen. But the honesty here is a passive
honesty. It is not the aggressively just fulfilment of obligation which
one finds in New England.

The Hill is a community with a high level of chastity. This may be said
of all classes, though not uniformly of all. Yet it was not always so.
The first century of the life of the Quakers here is recorded in the
minutes of Oblong Meeting as one long struggle of Quaker discipline
against unchastity. There is an amazing frankness about these records,
and a persistence in the exercise of discipline, a frequency of
accusation, proof, conviction, expulsion from the Meeting, which is
astonishing to the twentieth century reader. The best families furnished
the culprits almost as often as they supplied the accusers and
prosecuting committees. So many are the cases and so frequent the
expulsions, often for matters which might better have been ignored, but
generally for substantial offences, that one wonders who was left in the
Meeting. But men often confessed and were received again, and the
Meeting held its ground. In general it may be said that often in the
eighteenth century there were more cases of unchastity dealt with in a
year by the Meeting, in a population no larger than the present, than
have come to public knowledge in the past ten years in this community.
The change shows also in a reserve of speech upon these matters.

The characteristic pleasures of the community, as a whole, are few.
There is a group of women of leisure, of course, devoted to
bridge-whist, who come in the summer and do not go far from the Hotel.
Young men go hunting, and a few grown men are fond of fishing. The
typical person provides himself with no pleasures outside of his family
and home. Men and women are too busy to play, and the Quakers educated
themselves out of a playful mind.

There are a few pleasures which are native and general. One of these is
public assembly, with an entertaining speaker as a central pleasure.
Quaker Hill audiences are alert and keen hearers, and indulgent critics
of a public speaker. There are only two other forms of public
entertainment more pleasing to them. The first is a dramatic
presentation. Many of the Quakers are excellent actors, and the Irish
are quite their equals, while the other newcomers are equally
appreciative. The Christmas play in Akin Hall is a great annual event,
assembling all the people on the Hill of all classes and groups, for it
embodies very many of the appeals to characteristic pleasure. Only one
other attraction is more generally responded to; I refer to a dinner.
Something good to eat, in common with one's neighbors, in a place
hallowed by historic associations, under religious auspices--here you
have the call that brings Quaker Hill all together. On such a day there
will be none left behind.

Of all these sorts is the attraction the Quaker Hill Conference has for
the people of the neighborhood. It is a universal appeal to the capacity
for pleasure in the community. It presents famous and eloquent speakers
through the days of the week. Matters of religion, farming, morals,
literature, are discussed, by men of taste and culture; and the
closing day is Quaker Hill Day. On this day, after an assembly in the
old Oblong Meeting House, erected in 1764, at which the neighborhood has
listened to papers descriptive of the past of the Hill, all adjourn for
a generous dinner under the trees of Akin Hall, or latterly under a tent
beside the Meeting House, partaken of by four hundred people, of all
groups and classes, and followed by brisk, happy speeches by visitors
present. This, after almost two centuries of keen interest in the
question of amusements, is the last and most perfect expression of the
capacity for amusement in the community.


[Illustration: MEMORIAL STONE]

Of active pleasure-taking, Quaker Hill, purely considered, is incapable.

It should be said that the Roman Catholic Church in Pawling provides its
people with a yearly feast, parallel with the Conference, which was for
years held in a grove on the borders of Quaker Hill.

Traits of character which are general or even common among Quaker Hill
people are worthy of mention under the heads of regular industry,
frugality, cleanliness, temperance, chastity, honesty as to property,
and compassion.

Politically the Hill was until the year 1896 inclined to be Democratic.
For years a number of the Protestants on the Hill have been

Primitive notions of morals survive in spite of what has been said
earlier, in isolated instances, or tend to recur in certain families.
Until twelve years ago members of certain families maintained the right
to catch fish with a net in Hammersley Lake. Over the line in
Connecticut this practice, and that of taking fish with a spear, survive
in spite of law. But this primitive method was forcibly ended by the
attempt to arrest the chief offender. He made his escape from the
officers, but has never returned, and the practice has not till this
date, 1905, been resumed on Quaker Hill.

Primitive moralities of sex appear in certain families, in which in each
generation there appears one illegitimate child, at least; as it were a
reminder of their disorderly past. The chari-vari survives among the
better class of working people, a strange, noisy outbreak for a Quaker
community, with which a newly married pair are usually serenaded.

I find also no animistic ideas, or practices; no folk-lore and no magic.
The Quaker Hill imagination has been disciplined.

The preferred attainment in this community is neither power, splendor,
pleasure, nor ceremonial purity; nor yet justice, liberty or
enlightenment; but rather, first of all, prosperity, a well-being in
which one's good fortune sheds its favors on others; secondly,
righteousness, to be enjoyed in religious complacency; and thirdly,
equality. This last is one of the few elements of a social ideal
actually realized. Even among the women of the place there is a simple
and unaffected democracy in the religious and communal societies, which
is quite unusual in such a place.

Of sacred places there are avowedly none. But the historic sense of the
community is reverent, almost religious, in its regard for the past; so
that the Oblong Meeting House, cradle of the community, and for over a
century its home and house of government, is chief in the affections of
all. In the summer of 1904 this place was marked for all time by the
placing there of a boulder of white feldspar, bearing a bronze tablet
inscribed with the important facts of the history of that spot.

Quaker Hill does not desire to expand. The type of community preferred
is the simple, small, and exclusive. In this all agree, whether they
confess it or not. No expansion will ever come by native forces or
conscious purpose.

Quaker Hill reveres leaders, not heroes; and not saints, for men have
been cherished for their leadership in dogmatic activities, rather than
for their abstract goodness or human value. The type of the social mind
that has been most esteemed is the dogmatic-emotional. Even Albert J.
Akin, whose dogma was the union of all Christians, had no patience with
any divergence in religious experience from this, his dogma.

The forms of complex activity that are chiefly cherished are, first, the
economic arts; second, religion; third, morals; and fourth, things
pertaining to costume. The institutions chiefly prized are the family
and marriage, the economic system and the cultural system, especially
the church.

Social welfare is conceived of under forms of peace, the increase and
diffusion of wealth, industry, and by a minority, culture. High morality
is most valued as an element in the social personality. Next after it is
a highly developed sociality. Social policies would be favored on the
Hill as they represented authority and individualism. Conversion is the
accepted means of modifying type.

Practical politics may be said to be foreign to Quaker Hill, for reasons
drawn from its isolation and religious offishness. An exception was in
the early part of the nineteenth century, when Daniel Akin, apparently
in consequence of mercantile position, was elected County Judge. After
him, his brother Albro was appointed to the office.

The consciousness of kind on Quaker Hill is stronger in the group than
in the community. Yet the general sense of "unity" is very strong and it
often comes into play.

The chief social bonds which unite the whole community are, first of
all, imitation, in which process it seems to me the Quakers are a
peculiarly subtle people. Second, a good-will which pervades the Hill
like a genial atmosphere. Third, kindness, which on certain occasions
draws the whole community together in unusual acts of helpfulness to
some member in need.



The prevailing type of mind among Quaker Hill folk is the
Ideo-Emotional; for these folk are a gentle, social sort of persons,
ready of affection, imaginative and analogical in mental process, weak
and complacent in emotionality, with motor reaction rather inconstant,
and of slow response. Of these I find thirty-seven families.

The next category is that of the Dogmatic-Emotional, in which I observe
twenty-two families. These are composed of persons in whom austere and
domineering character proceeds from a dogmatic fixity of mind, and
expresses itself in the same inconstant application shown by the former

A few of the more notable of the personalities produced by Quaker birth
and breeding belong, I think, in the Ideo-Motor class. I find only seven
families of that type, but the forceful character, of aggressive bent,
moderate intellect and strong but well-controlled emotion, is distinctly
present; and this class has furnished some of the most successful of the
sons of Quaker Hill.

I have known only six persons resident on the Hill in the twelve years
under study who could be described as Critically-Intellectual. Of these,
four have been bred in the larger school of the city, and only two have
lived their lives upon the Hill. Of these six, five are women.

There is, of course, only one language spoken in Quaker Hill. Indeed
only one or two persons have any other than English as their native
tongue.[35] And very few have acquired any other as a matter of culture.
The vocabulary used is limited. An intelligent observer says: "The
vocabulary of the native community is the meagerest I have ever known,
except that of the immigrant." There are, however, very few
illiterates; none, indeed, in the literal meaning of the term.

Manners on the whole are uniform for the resident population. Of course
the summer people have the conventional manners, or lack of manners, of
the city. So far as religion has shaped the manners of the old Quaker
group, they are often gentle and refined; but as often blunt and
imperious. The Irish have the best manners, I observe, and the more
transient summer people and farm-hands the worst. In both the last two
classes there is too often a pride in rudeness and vulgarity which the
native of mature years never exhibits. The Quaker and the Catholic are
equally ceremonious in inclination. The latter always desires to please.
The Quaker, when he desires to please, is capable of very fine courtesy;
but he does not always desire, and he has less insight into the essence
of a social situation.

The community has had a history, of course, in the matter of costume.
The Meeting House law made costume a matter of ethics for a century. But
to-day there is great diversity. Probably this is a sign of the
transition from the Quaker to the broader human order. But all one can
say upon costume is that there is now no dress prescribed for any
occasion. At one extreme there are a few, in 1905 only three, in 1907
only one, who wear the Quaker garb. At the other extreme are outsiders
who dress as the city tailor and milliner clothe them. And between these
there is liberty.

The dispositions again are varied. One finds the aggressiveness of five
stirring men and three capable women sufficient to give character to the
place. Many functions of the community are still vigorously upheld, yet
the number of aggressive spirits is diminishing. The instigative type is
present in three, and its processes give pleasure to all who behold. The
domineering type is present in eight members, especially in those
families which claim by right of inheritance either social or religious
leadership. And, as to others, as I quoted an observer above, "They are
an obedient people." I do not know any creative minds, much less any
class with original initiative. If there had been any such, Quaker Hill
would have produced artists, great and small, and writers, not a few.
There is a consciousness of material for creation, and in certain
families the culture which creation presupposes; but something in
Quakerism has quieted the muse and banked the fires.

As to types of character, there are forceful persons, a very few, nine
at the utmost being of this type. Austere persons, who have in the past
given to the Hill much of its character, have almost disappeared, not
more than four being within that category, among the population under
study in this part of the book.

The number of the rationally conscientious is as small as is that of the
convivial. The Meeting, which was for over a century the organ of
conscience for the community, denied to the convivial their license, and
released the conscientious from any obligation to be rational. The
Meeting has now but recently passed away, and its standards of character
speak as loudly as ever. I find three women who may be called rationally
conscientious, one a Quakeress, one a New Yorker, and one of Quaker
birth and worldly breeding. I find also three who are truly convivial in
type, one a son of Quakers, and two who are Irish Catholics; while
to these might be added two whose designation ought to be
Industrious-Convivial, hard-working men who are fond of social pleasure
as an end of life.

A few in certain households, three in number, are intellectually
aesthetic in a passive way, fond of art and books, but creating nothing.
Two artists of note have in the past twelve years come to the Hill,
bought places and made it at least a summer home.

It must not be inferred from the foregoing that there is not a wide
range of mental difference among Quaker Hill men and women. In the
matter of quickness and slowness of action this variation appears even
among the members of any one group. In the same family are two brothers,
both farmers, both tenants. One is able to farm a thousand acres more
successfully than the other can cultivate two hundred. The one is
instant in judgment, swift in action, able to compress into an hour
heavy physical labor and also the control of many other men. The other
is leisurely, indolent in movement, though a diligent man, and is as
much burdened by increase of responsibilities as the former is
stimulated. These two men are not exceptional, but typical. The extreme
of slowness is indeed represented in one man whose tortoise pace in all
matters dependent on the mind and will is oddly contrasted with his
vigor and energy of manner. His movements are a provocation of delighted
comments by his neighbors; I think partly because they are felt to be
representative of what is latent in other men, and partly because he is
surrounded by others more alert. Such men are the outcropping of a vein
of degenerate will. It is not immoral degeneracy, but its weakness is
incapacity for action of any kind, inability to see and do the specific
task. This degenerate will does not extend to traditional morals, and
does not always affect whole families. But its pervasive effects are
seen in almost all the representatives of three large families of the
old Quaker stock. Contrasted to these are some of the old stock, who
though slow of thought and barren of mental initiative, are swift of
action, sure in synthesis of a situation, and instant in performance of
precisely the requisite deed.

One finds on the Hill many examples of native administrative ability of
a high order--for a farm is as complicated a property as a railway is.
There are fully as many others who would be burdened with the cares of a

Not a few on the Hill are like the farmer who, sent on an errand to
bring some guests from a train to a certain house, spent half an hour
after meeting the guests in conversation with them in the railway
station before mentioning his errand; and would have made it an hour had
they not inquired of him for a conveyance. Yet a neighbor of his, in the
same social group, closely related, has unusual capacity for affairs.

The instincts of the people of the Hill are not, I think, so varied.
They involuntarily respect religion, when expressed with sincerity, and
incarnated in strength of character. It must have the authority,
however, of strength, at least passive strength, to appeal to local

[35] In 1905-7 six Swedes and Poles also have come, as laborers.



The members of the community have organized themselves into associations
for the carrying on of special forms of activity to a degree which is
worthy of record. As one might expect, the societies of most vigor are
those maintained by the women, since the men have never been able
spontaneously to organize, or to maintain, any society on the Hill.

Central to all this organization, through the period of the Mixed
Community, has been Akin Hall Association, created by one man, and
endowed by him. Under its shelter a church and library live, and a
yearly Conference is maintained for five days in the month of September.
In this chapter we will consider first the incorporated, then the
unincorporated societies.

The chief incorporated institution on Quaker Hill is Akin Hall
Association, founded in 1880 by Albert J. Akin. It was his intention to
create an institution of the broadest purpose, through which could be
carried on activities of a religious, literary, educational, benevolent
and generally helpful order. "Albert Akin endowed," said a visitor, "not
a college or a hospital, but a community!" The charter of the
Association, which was from time to time, on advice, amended, up to the
time of Mr. Akin's death in 1903, provided for the most catholic
endowment of Quaker Hill, in every possible need of its population.

The particular directions in which this endowment has been used are two.
A library and a church are in active use by the neighborhood, the former
since 1883, and the latter since 1895, of which I will speak in detail

Akin Hall Association is a corporation consisting of five trustees, a
self-perpetuating body, and eleven other "members." The number of
trustees was originally sixteen, but Mr. Akin early yielded to legal
advice in concentrating authority in five persons; while continuing the
remaining eleven as a quasi-public to whom the five report their doings,
and with whom they regularly confer. The annual meeting of the
Association is upon the birthday of the founder, August 14th. At that
time the trustees assemble at two p. m. for the transaction of business,
election of members and of officers; and at 3 p. m. the members' meeting
is called to order, the officers of the trustees being officers of the
whole body. Members are permitted and expected to inquire as to
activities of the Association, its funds and its work in general, and to
vote on all matters coming before the body for its action. Only no
action involving the expenditure of money, or the election of trustees,
shall be valid without the concurrence in majority opinion of a majority
of the trustees.

The chief interest of the trustees has always been the care of the
property of the Association, which includes invested funds, and the
following buildings, with about thirty acres of land: a hotel, having
rooms for two hundred guests, a stone library, a chapel, and seven
cottages. The hotel is usually rented to a "proprietor," and the duties
of the library and church are laid upon a minister, the earliest of
whom, Mr. Chas. Ryder, was called the "Agent."

The Akin Free Library, consisting of about three thousand books,
selected with uncommon wisdom by committees of ladies through about
twenty-five years, was originally established by the ladies of the Hill,
in the early eighties, through a popular fund. It has ever since been
funded by the Akin Hall Association, who have also given it quarters,
and care, in the Chapel known as Akin Hall. It will soon be moved into
the stone Library, erected in 1898, but only finished in 1906, and it is
reasonable to suppose that it will there have a wider scope and an
increasing use.

The Library has been managed primarily for the use of "the Summer
people," and the books have the excellence of their selection, as well
as the proportion of certain kinds of books, determined by the
preferences of the Summer residents. No adequate records are kept of the
books used; so that it is impossible to give statistics of the specific
utility of the library. But it occupies a real place in the community,
and is drawn upon by families from every section of the population.

The fact that it was originally assembled by popular subscription, and
only later sustained by the Akin endowment is a token of the exceptional
latent interest in literature, and the passive culture, to which tribute
has been paid in this study of the Quaker Hill population. It is fair to
say, however, that such interest has been confined to a small group of
the population, now fast disappearing.

There is a small corporation, formed for the purpose of holding and
caring for the "Old Meeting House." It is known as Oblong Meeting House,
Incorporated. To this corporation, consisting of three trustees, a
self-perpetuating body, the Yearly Meeting of Friends[36] handed over in
1902 the building and grounds known as the "Old Meeting House," at Site
28. This ancient building, erected in 1764, is probably the oldest
edifice on the Hill, and is the embodiment of the religious and
historical traditions of the community. These trustees attend to the
repair of the Meeting House, which is maintained in exactly the
condition in which it was used for over a century. No meeting of worship
is held now in this building, the "monthly meeting" having been "laid
down" in 1885. The building is, however, the center of frequent
pilgrimages during the summer, by the visitors to the Hill and boarders,
who delight in its quaint interior. It is used for occasional "sales"
for the "benefit" of some public interest. Once a year at the close of
Quaker Hill Conference, it is the place of "Quaker Hill Day" exercises,
at which addresses and papers are presented, in celebration and
commemoration of the past history of the community.

The Hill has record of few revivals. Quaker ways preclude surprises, and
revivals usually arise from new things. There was, however, during five
years, 1892-1897, a religious awakening, prolonged month after month,
for five years with undiminished force. The cause of it seems to have
been the study of the Bible in the historic method; a new mode of
awakening traditional religious interest. During that time the whole
community was keenly alive, old and young; and in certain cases a change
of life became permanent. In many young persons a definite religious
impulse was the result.

This quickened religious interest involved all the Quaker influence,
both Orthodox and Hicksite, and it was reinforced by several strong
personalities from outside the Hill, persons trained in church work in
New York and elsewhere. It crystallized in the organization of "Christ's
Church, Quaker Hill," in the Spring of 1895, which received at the
beginning adherents of all the religious groups represented on the Hill.
Within three years it had grown to a membership of sixty-five, among
whom were members or adherents of the following religious bodies,
Protestant Episcopal Church, Anglican and Roman Catholic Churches,
Quakers, Hicksite and Orthodox, Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist
Episcopal, Congregational, Disciples and Lutheran.

This church is served by the minister employed in Akin Hall, and it has
therefore a peculiar place. Its membership is drawn from the population
resident on the Hill. Its doctrinal truths are simple, namely the
Apostles' Creed. Its ordinances are elastic, baptism being waived in the
case of those who, being trained as Quakers, do not believe in water
baptism; and by the conditions affixed to Mr. Akin's endowment, that no
denominational use should ever be made of Akin Hall, it is without
sectarian connections.

The religious services in Akin Hall have in Summer been attended since
1880 by numbers of "summer people," from Mizzen-Top Hotel and the
boarding-houses. A Sunday School was maintained from 1890 to 1905, a
Christian Endeavor Society from 1894 to 1903. Both have been
discontinued, owing to lack of members.

The church has also a diminished membership, especially since 1903,
owing in part to mere removal of population; and even more to the death
and removal from the Hill of persons of forceful, aggressive type, and
the impoverishment of the population in respect of initiative and

The other agency carried on under the patronage of Akin Hall Association
is the Quaker Hill Conference. Founded in 1899 by Mr. Akin, entertained
by Miss Monahan, this assembly has made September of each year a focal
point in local interest. For five days of public meetings, Bible study,
addresses upon religion, social and economic topics, culminating in a
great dinner, of which four hundred partake, it is the modern successor
of the now extinct Quaker Quarterly meetings. It expended in 1907 about
$1,400, of which about half was contributed by Akin Hall Association,
and the remainder by individuals.

The groups in which the women of the Hill are associated are of great
interest. The Roman Catholic women have only their kinship associations,
and no voluntary associations, being generally in the employ of
Protestants, and having their church center away from the Hill in
Pawling village.

The King's Daughters is the largest association, and most representative
of the Hill, both in its numbers, frequency of meetings and variety of
interests; though it is not the oldest. It has a membership of forty,
and is actively devotional, charitable and benevolent. It serves also a
useful purpose in providing social meetings, bazaars, sales and other
occasions throughout the year which bring neighbors together; and uses
their assembling for the assisting of the poor, ignorant or needy.

This society, as well as the one to be mentioned next, exemplifies the
real democracy in which the women of the Hill meet and plan for common
local interests; a fine spirit and practical efficiency characterizing
their meetings, and each woman, however, humble, having a part with the
best in the general result.

The Wayside Path Association is smaller in number of members, as well as
older than the King's Daughters; indeed, it has perhaps no fixed
membership, but is an assembling of the women of the place about a small
group as a working center for a yearly duty. Its purpose is to maintain
a dirt sidewalk, over three miles in length, which follows the road
northward and southward, from the Glen to the Post Office, with
branches. Once a year the Association meets, gathers funds by a "sale"
or by subscription, hires a laborer to repair the Wayside Path; then for
a year lies dormant. In 1898 there was a general effort made to
transform this association into a general Village Improvement Society,
with diversified interests, into which men would come, but it failed,
and no such society exists.

The West Mountain Mission is an association of ladies of the Hill, who
through sales and bazaars, supplemented by gifts, contribute to the
support of a chapel of the Protestant Episcopal Church, two miles west
of Pawling. This association draws its membership from the hotel guests
and from residents in the cottages; and but little from the essential
Quaker Hill households.

The same may be said of whist clubs maintained in the summer at the
hotel and cottages.


[36] The Hicksite or Unitarian body held possession of the
Meeting House in 1828, and until the above action.



Quaker Hill is an example of the working of a religious and economic
system toward its inevitable results in social welfare. The results
consciously sought were mainly personal. They were not seeking culture
or security or equity, and not attempting to create a community, those
early Quakers; but they sought with all their heart and mind after
prosperity, individual and communal; after vitality, morality and that
self-expression which is in the form of self-sacrifice or altruism in
"the service of others." The conscious mind of the Quaker fathers of
this community was other-worldly, except in the matters of business--of
which more later. That "spiritual" state of mind was intensely
individual. All the interests it regarded were of the self, conceived as
an inner, immaterial duplicate of the body, destined for heaven after
death, and now enjoying interchanges of experience, especially of
emotion and intelligence, with the Deity, during life.

It was a mind consciously framed to serve personal development, with no
thought of public or common interests. Yet subconsciously the Quaker was
acutely aware of common interests. A Quaker frequently uses the
expression "I feel myself in unity with them." Their doctrine of the
indwelling of the divine in every man made them quick to feel common
emotion. Their group-sympathy was lively and strong. They felt the
community, though they never thought upon it. Subconsciously, though not
consciously, they were public-spirited. They acted upon a fine social
spirit, thought they taught no social gospel.

"The supreme result of efficient organization,"[37] says Professor F.
H. Giddings, "and the supreme test of efficiency is the development of
the personality of the social man. If the man himself becomes less
social, less rational, less manly; if he falls from the highest type,
which seeks self-realization through a critical intelligence and
emotional control, to one of those lower types which manifest only the
primitive virtues of power; if he becomes unsocial, the social
organization, whatever its apparent merits, is failing to achieve its
supreme object. If, on the contrary, the man is becoming ever better as
a human being, more rational, more sympathetic, with an ever broadening
consciousness of kind, then, whatever its apparent defects, the social
organization is sound and efficient." Let us consider whether Quaker
Hill has met this test. It has been well organized. It has had definite
purposes. What has been the type of welfare enjoyed as a result? What
kind of man has emerged from almost two centuries of cultivation of a
religious and economic ideal?

In economic operations the Quakers dwelt in this world. They sought a
living and they sought wealth--not for the services wealth can render in
culture and education, but to accumulate it, possess it, invest and
manage it, and to live "in plainness."

Yet they subconsciously did also seek after a prosperity that should be
general. Not closely, not in any declarations or definite teachings of
their code, but still in a real way, as a by-product of their code of
life, they acted so that none in their community should be in want. This
they did with profound wisdom--for they taught no communal doctrine--and
the details of their action toward weaker members of the neighborhood
were uncommonly shrewd and sensible. I will show later the effects of
this in the fact that the population under our study shows the absence
of defective classes in a significant degree. There are no idiots, no
defective, no criminal, no pauper classes among the Quaker Hill

The mind of the community had, indeed, an active interest in liberty and
the contribution noted above (see Ch. IV. Part I) in the agitation for
the abolition of slavery in this state was an act of public spirit along
the lines of a great national experience. The fact that the meeting of
Friends in 1767 was held on Quaker Hill, which initiated effective
action against slave-holding, is much cherished on the Hill, and is
commemorated in a stone and bronze memorial at the Meeting House.

Equality of suffrage and universal suffrage are jealously believed in,
owing to the Quaker teaching as to woman's parity with man. Yet in the
school-meeting, in which women have the same right to vote that men
have, there are seldom any women present. Indeed, except for a packed
meeting once in a decade, to decide some agitated question, few women
attend school-meetings.

The size of the holdings of land on the Hill, and the curve of increase
and decrease for seventy years, are exhibited in Table II.


_Land-Holdings on Quaker Hill: Acreages on which Owners are taxed._

 Years            1835    1845    1865    1875    1890    1900    1906
 No. Owners         31      26      39      51      48      53      42
 Highest Acreage   610     540     445     420     540     540     540
 Higher Quartile   378     260     225     225     183.5   222.5   265
 Average           222     206     150.5   147.8   137.8   154     184.2
 Median            187     150     131     120     104     120     155.5
 Lower Quartile     80     100      59      52      43.5    57      90
 Lowest Acreage      1      42       3       6       5       1       6

The above table gives in a graphic manner the tendency of wealth to
increase, on the Hill, so far as wealth is represented in land. It is to
be noted that these figures, taken from the Tax-Lists of the town of
Pawling, are not precisely accurate, especially in the lower ranges.
There is an evident inaccuracy in the reporting of the smaller places.
Yet from them the following may be inferred: First, that from the
beginning of the reports, which was about the end of the period of the
Quaker Community, there was a shrinkage in the size of the land-holdings
on the Hill; and from the beginning of the period of the Mixed Community
a rise in the general averages. The lowest of the curve is about 1890,
in the Median, the average and in each of the quartiles. Second, the
incoming of the Irish immigrants, who began to be land-holders about
1850, multiplied the number of small holdings of land.

Just what cause has operated in the years 1890-1906 to increase the size
of the holdings of land it is hard to say, unless it be the expectation
that land would have a value, which is aroused by the presence on the
Hill every summer of visitors to a number equal to the numbers of the
resident population. It is evident at the present time, when the "milk
business" has been reduced to half in the past five years, that the
farmers are holding their lands with a hope of selling.

It is worthy of remark that the tax-list of the town furnish no other
data of reliable value, or even of suggestion, being obviously
inaccurate and uneven in their reports of the values of land, and of the
holdings of personal property.

The fact that is not recorded in the above statistics is this: that
certain owners, associated in close family ties, own all the land of
greatest value. Seven family groups possess, in the names of eleven of
the above owners, all the land near the Hotel, all the land for which
any one has ever thought of charging more than fifty dollars an acre.
These eleven owners of all the land of greatest value possess probably
nine-tenths of the personal property.

Holdings of property on Quaker Hill are very unequal. The smallest owner
of real estate has an acre, and the largest about six hundred acres.
Contrasts here are sharp and permanent. The same families have possessed
certain properties for many decades, often for two centuries; and
generally Quaker Hill families do not sell till they all die or move

Wealth is increasing on Quaker Hill in the slow course of years, and
probably along the lines of present growth, will increase. It is
distributed with marked inequality. The tendency, especially in central
territory, is toward increasing inequality. There is "a small group at a
high degree."

Yet the community is generally prosperous and well-to-do. There are none
poor. Indeed, the wealthy women who began to come to Mizzen-Top Hotel in
1880, looking about for some poor to assist, were obliged to go off the
Hill to the south, and lay hold of a lonely female with a curious
nervous malady but self-respecting withal, and deliberately pauperize
her. To this process, after some initial struggles, she has submitted
through these intervening years. She has now for years been pensioned by
the church in Akin Hall through the year, visited in summer by people in
carriages, has maintained an extensive begging correspondence through
the mails all winter, and has been generally despised by her neighbors.
But she has represented to interested clergymen and charity workers on
their summer vacations the fascinating and mysterious problem of

Very few indeed have been the defectives. I know of none in ten years.
The prevailing vitality of the community is high. There were living two
years ago five persons past ninety; and one of them died in his
hundredth year. Octogenarians drive the roads every day, and manage
their estates with ripe discretion and unabated interest in affairs. The
religious revival referred to (see Chapter VI) brought into the church
an active man of great wealth of ninety-five years of age.

There are no blind persons. One old man, who suffered from cataract,
lost an eye in an operation at eighty-five years of age; and refused to
submit the other eye-ball to the surgeon. There are no deaf and dumb.

People on Quaker Hill are well-born. I suppose this may be in part due
to the high morality of their fathers. I attribute it, in view of the
contrast in this respect to the contiguous population in Sherman, Conn.,
to the highly organic communal life of Quaker Hill. Connecticut people,
some of them of the same original Quaker stock, have settled on small
holdings of lands, and held them till isolation and poverty have driven
them to suicide, insanity or other miseries. Quaker Hill was from the
beginning differentiated into a healthier diversity, and it has been the
better for her people.

There are few mentally abnormal persons in the community. One may
designate three persons as unbalanced, two of them unmarried women; and
another such as probably insane, though residing at home. But even the
aged do not die first in the head. There are no idiotic persons.

The prevailing morality is high. Very few would be classified as
immoral, by the public disapproval of their conduct. Individuals have
committed theft, or an act of cruelty, or adultery, in the years
1895-1905. They do not constitute classes.

The sociality of Quaker Hill seems to the writer relatively high.
Response to a case of real need is prompt, wise and abundant; and common
action for others is heartily begun and completed. There are no
unsocialized persons; neither paupers, criminals, nor degraded, in the
community; at least no class or classes of such. There is a man who
perhaps drinks too much and too often; but even he is too far from the
saloon to attain to the dignity of neighborhood drunkard.

Quaker Hill has not been of a mind to contribute institutions or
resources to the public. Toward war hostile, toward the state always
impassive, sometimes actively disloyal in times of war, Quaker Hill has
lived a life apart.

Common school privileges are offered to all in the three school houses
at Sites 12, 43 and 101 (school districts No. 1, 3, 4) and the
advantages offered are generally studiously appropriated by the young.
In the ten years under study two families alone have been unwilling to
take full advantage of the school opportunities.

In the school at Site 43, for which alone an improved, modern building
has been erected, there was, beginning in 1893, a determined effort made
to provide a school better than the ordinary country school. By the
co-operation of certain farmers with children in school, and through
contributions of citizens of means who had no children, better teachers
were employed, at increased expense, for the space of twelve years.
During two years the school was graded, employing two teachers. But the
effort in this direction seems to have ceased with the close of the year
1905-1906. This school has had, for the years 1904-6, only one
Protestant child, in an enrollment of twenty to thirty.

The other school-districts are maintained "in the old back-country way,"
their attendance is small and no effort is made to raise the standard of

It has been accepted for generations among the authoritative leaders on
Quaker Hill that "higher education was not good for the poor." Of this
doctrine, Albert Akin, generally progressive, was a firm believer. He
insisted, and other representatives of the leading families have done
the same, that "to offer them higher education only makes them
discontented"; "they won't work if you get them to studying--and
somebody must do the work."

It seems in strict harmony with this opinion, which I never heard
opposed on the Hill, that Quaker Hill has never until 1904 sent a young
man or woman through the college or university. Albert J. Akin, 2d, was
a member of class of 1904 of Columbia University, but he was not born on
the Hill, and never long resided there. Indeed, the town of Pawling has
not another college graduate among its sons. There have been, however, a
few who have gone to school to the grade of high school and no normal
schools. In the past ten years ten young men and women have done so. One
youth all but completed a college course in 1906. Two young women are
just completing courses as nurses.

Personality is the field in which the conscious purpose cherished on
Quaker Hill would have wrought its best efforts. But personality was
always on Quaker Hill inhibited, restrained and schooled into
mediocrity. Variation was repressed. Spontaneity was forbidden.
Ingenuous spirits were firmly and effectively directed into channels
believed to be harmless.

The result has been that mediocre people have both lived on the Hill,
and gone away from it, in voluntary exile from its beautiful scenes, but
not in exile from its spirit of plainness. No person of brilliant mind
or of uncommon talents has ever come of the Quaker Hill population.
There is not among the sons or daughters of this place one whose name is
of lasting interest to any beyond the limits of Pawling. No artist or
poet has ever ventured to express the intense feeling of the aesthetic
which pervades the place, but has always been hushed from singing,
restrained from picturing.

I think the end for which the Quaker Hill population have lived could be
called Individual-Social. They are consciously individual, and
unconsciously, inevitably social. These people have sought generation
after generation for personal salvation and personal gain. "And that,"
says a resident, "that is why the place is dying." Yet the common
interest was a logical corollary of the Quaker doctrine of God in every
man, and therefore a community was formed, a community indeed which was
no one's conscious care. In the chapter upon "The Common Mind," above,
I have showed that all the leaders of the community as a whole, save
one, have been outsiders, who came to see the integrity of the community
with eyes of "the world's people," and these leaders in communal service
have been grudgingly followed.

That one, Albert J. Akin, who founded Akin Hall Association, lived away
from Quaker Hill, in New York City, the most of the months of fifty
years, 1830-1880, and fell under the influence of outsiders.[39]

Indeed, a rare beauty characterizes these children of the old Quaker
Community; and a fine harmony blends the members of the Mixed Community
into one another. The type of country gentleman and lady was perfectly
embodied in James J. Vanderburgh, who died about 1889, in his residence
at Site 30. He was a good man, hospitable, large-minded, well read,
humane; he was sufficiently reverent to be good neighbor to the
Orthodox; and he was sufficiently wealthy to express the Quaker economic
ideal. He had the Quaker genius of thrift expressing itself in bounty.

Mrs. Zayde Akin Bancroft, resident at Site 32, who died in 1896, was an
example of the ideal Quaker Hill lady. A woman of leisure and culture,
accustomed to the possession of wealth, and enjoying it in books and
travel, she surrounded herself for several of her last years with an
atmosphere, and secured for herself enjoyment, of the highest
aspirations of the Quaker Hill economic ideal.

No one quite so much embodied that ideal as Albert J. Akin, who died in
his hundredth year, in January, 1903. His fortune, which amounted at his
death to more than two million dollars, was the culmination of the
wealth of his family, acquired since his great-great-grandfather, David
Akin, the pioneer, came to Quaker Hill about 1730. He was a far-seeing
and brilliant investor, and through his long business life, which lasted
until 1901, he followed the growth of railroads in the United States
with steady optimism, and almost unvarying profit. After the year 1880
he came to live on Quaker Hill, in the interest of his health, more
constantly than he had in the preceding fifty years. He at once
interested himself in local enterprises, and Akin Hall Association and
Mizzen-Top Hotel were at that time founded by him and others. Until his
death, twenty-three years later, he was the leading citizen and the most
interesting personality among this social population. Such was his place
and so masterful as well as constructive his influence that it was a
true expression of the feeling of all which one resident wrote at that
time to another: "The king is dead, the man on whom we unconsciously
leaned and whom none of us thought of disobeying, though only his
personality held us to allegiance, is gone from us. And I for one feel
that I have lost a dear friend."

[Illustration: ALBERT JOHN AKIN BORN 1803, DIED 1903]

These three illustrations will serve to indicate both the kind of
persons who have come of the Quaker Hill community, and one of its
tendencies. They illustrate also the spirit of the community toward its

Personalities of the austere type, men and women of the devotional side
of Quakerism, may be cited in the cases of [40]David Irish and
[41]Richard T. Osborn. The former was the last minister of the Hicksite
Society of Friends on the Hill. His preaching covered the years of its
separate existence, for he was made a minister in 1831, three years
after the Division, and he died in 1884, at the age of ninety-two. One
year after his death the Meeting was formally "laid down," in Oblong
Meeting House, and from a place of worship it became a house of

David Irish was austere. Believing that slavery was wrong, "he made his
protest against slavery by abstaining, so far as possible, from the use
of slave-products ... made maple to take the place of cane sugar, and
used nothing but linen and woolen clothing (largely home-spun). This
abstaining he continued for himself and family until slavery was
abolished." Yet "he never felt free," continues his daughter and
biographer, "to join with anti-slavery societies outside his own,
believing that by so doing he might compromise some of his testimonies."
He welcomed in his home the fugitive slave fleeing from the South, and
"there must never be any distinction made in the family on account of
his color; he sat at the same table and was treated as an equal."

David Irish was equally opposed to war, and to capital punishment. He
wrote, "testified" and "suffered" for these principles. "In the time of
the Civil War he allowed his cattle to be sold by the tax-collector, not
feeling free to pay the direct war-tax." His biographer enumerates
further his hospitality, his fondness for books, his humor, and mentions
with a pride characteristic of the Quaker that he "was often entrusted
with the settlement of estates, showing the esteem in which his business
capacity and integrity were held by the community."

Richard T. Osborn was the Elder of the Orthodox branch of the Friends
during the same period, subsequent to the Division, as that covered by
David Irish's life. Born in 1816, he was conversant as a child with the
period of the Division. The seceding members of the Meeting met in his
father's house and barn until the Orthodox Meeting House could be
erected on the land upon which, at his marriage in 1842, he erected his
house. Richard Osborn was "the head of his family." Strong of will,
austere, convinced, he lived in the world of Robert Barclay and William
Penn, and for years never hesitated to rebuke young or old Quakers or
"world's people," whom he found violating "the principles of truth." A
summer boarder who played a violin upon his premises was silenced, and
the singing of a hymn in the Meeting House of which he was Clerk was
once sternly "testified against."

But Richard Osborn was kindly. He had a gentle and appreciative humor;
and about 1890 there come influences in the presence of neighbors to
whom he was strongly drawn, as well as the constant presence in his
house of boarders from New York; so that his later years were spent in a
mellower interest in dogma, and an ever keener interest in the history
of Quakerism and of the community in which he lived. His wife, Roby, was
a Quakeress of rare sweetness and exquisite gentleness of character.
Together this strong, dominating man and his gentle wife constituted an
influence, while they lived, which held the community together, and
disseminated their principles more successfully than if he had been
eloquent, instead of terse, and she an evangelist instead of a meek and
demure Quakeress.

These persons were conspicuous examples of the best social product of
Quaker Hill. They were not famous, nor great. Their philosophy was one
of self-repression and required them to reduce their lives and those of
other men to mediocrity. Quaker Hill taught and practiced the prevention
of pauperism--and the prevention of genius! The ideals of the place
discouraged higher education. The leading personages distinctly opposed
the offer of higher education to the young.

Therefore this community, which has been exceptionally wealthy for one
hundred and fifty years, has done nothing for general education; and has
not educated its own sons. As noted above, no person born on Quaker Hill
ever completed the courses for a degree in college or university, and
though the community has had for a century families with aesthetic and
literary tastes, no member of the community has painted a picture,
written a song, or published a book.

The personages briefly described above are named for another reason.
Their deaths, with the deaths of certain others whom they represent,
have brought to an end the period of Quaker Hill's history which I have
called "The Mixed Community." The others who with them made up this
group were Jedediah and Phoebe Irish Wanzer, Anne Hayes, Olive Toffey
Worden, and six other persons still living, of whom four are past eighty
years and two are very near one hundred years of age. This group of
persons were the center of that Mixed Community. They possessed the
actual authority which this population always has required in its
leaders. The piety, the austerity, the forcefulness, the ownership of
the land of greatest value, and even the available wealth of the
community, were so largely possessed by this group that in the years
1890-1900, in which this group was still intact, its leadership was such
as to unite the community and consolidate the whole population for
whatever interests the leaders of this group approved. Of that period it
was said: "Everybody on Quaker Hill goes to everything!"

With the death of those who have passed away in the latter part of the
period under study the power of initiative has gone. New proposals are
hushed. Variation is discouraged; the rut of custom and convention is
preferred. And a subtle stifling air of the impossibility of all active
purposes pervades social and religious and business activity on the

Religiously speaking, attendance upon public services have decreased by
twenty per cent., while the Protestant population has only decreased
five per cent.

In business activity reference is made above to the fact that the number
of milk dairies has decreased from eighteen to nine, a decrease of fifty
per cent. At the same time the largest dairy on the Hill which in the
decade 1890-1900 "was milking one hundred cows," has for the years
1903-1907 "made milk" from only forty and fifty cows, although the owner
has more land than his predecessor.

The population which now remains on Quaker Hill contains only a few
persons of force and leadership, and they are no longer so grouped as to
command. The majority have no ability to follow unless authority be an
element in the leadership; and authority to command the whole community
has not existed since 1903. "The king is dead."

[37] Descriptive and Historical Sociology, p. 541.

[38] S. P. died 1906.

[39] An analysis of the sources of Mr. Akin's leadership,
written for the Memorial Service after his death in 1903, is of interest
here, as showing the influence of persons upon him who were not of
Quaker Hill ancestry or of Quaker breeding:

"In all the years he lived on the Hill he had to do with every movement
and was in touch with every person on the Hill. He made himself a party
to every public interest. When the building of the Hotel was suggested,
he put himself at the head of the movement, invested the most money in
it, and later obtaining entire control, deeded it to his Akin Hall
foundation. When the library enterprise was broached, which has grown
into Akin Free Library, he organized and incorporated the institution
required, endowed it generously; later reorganized it, upon legal
advice; thus accepting ideas from Admiral Worden, William B. Wheeler,
Cyrus Swan, Judge Barnard, and others of his neighbors, and contributing
his own patient and unflagging executive faculty. When it was thought
best, in 1892, to continue the church services throughout the winter
under the leadership of Mrs. Wheeler and of Miss Monahan, and the growth
of the Sunday school and permanent congregation seemed to require the
employment of a resident pastor, Mr. Akin acquiesced; at first as a
follower, but steadily and increasingly as a leader, he identified
himself more and more every year until his death, with the religious
life of Akin Hall and Christ's Church. He was a good leader, for he
confessed himself a follower in the enterprise which he was in a
position absolutely to control. He eagerly availed himself of the
suggestions of others, took a quiet and lowly place with entire dignity,
and exerted without arbitrariness a determining influence.

"When Mr. Akin was about sixty years of age, he bought a residence in
New York, and went there to live in the winters. He had as a neighbor a
Quaker preacher named Wright, who was accustomed to come to Oblong
Meeting in the course of the year. With him Mr. Akin had many
conversations on matters of duty and worship.

"He began also to attend the Oblong Meeting in the summer, though the
Sunday meetings were not at that time largely attended.

"Later when his residence was at Fifty-sixth Street he became the fast
friend and devoted admirer of Dr. John Hall, who used often to call upon
him. For years Mr. Akin was carried into Dr. Hall's Church; but after
Dr. Hall died, and even before, he had ceased from that custom.

"The growth of the church on Quaker Hill, under the leadership of Mr.
and Mrs. William B. Wheeler and Miss Margaret B. Monahan took strong
hold on Mr. Akin's heart, and exerted over no one a more vital influence
than on this old man."--Albert J. Akin--A Tribute, by Rev. Warren H.
Wilson, Quaker Hill Conference, 1903.

[40] David Irish--A Memoir, by Mrs. Phoebe T. Wanzer, Quaker
Hill Conference, 1902.

[41] Richard Osborn--A Reminiscence, by Margaret B. Monahan,
Quaker Hill Conference, 1902.

Part IV.

Appendices: Original Family and Church Records.


A List of the Heads of Families in the Verge of our Monthly Meeting held
on the Oblong and in the Nine-Partners Circularly taken in the 3 mo.
1760. (This date should be 1761. The Monthly Meeting directed the list
to be made 4, 16, 1761.[42])

 1st          At New Milford
 Dobson Wheeler and his Wife
 Aaron Benedick and his Wife
 Joseph Ferriss
 Gaius Talcott
 James McKenney
 Lydia Norton
 Anna Philips

 2d           At Oblong
 John Bull and his Wife
 Wing Kelley and his Wife
 Oliver Tyron and his Wife
 John Wing and his Wife
 John Hoag ye 2d and Wife
 Benjam Hoag and his Wife
 Abner Hoag and Wife
 Philip Allen and Wife
 Moses Hoag and Wife
 George Soule and Wife
 Wm. Russell and Wife
 David Hoag and Wife
 Ebenezer Peaslee and Wife
 Nehemiah Merritt and Wife
 Nehemiah Merritt Junr. and Wife
 Elijah Doty and Wife
 Henry Chase and Wife
 Abraham Chase and Wife
 Benjam Ferriss and Wife
 Timothy Dakin and Wife
 Elisha Akin's Children
 Reed Ferriss and Wife
 Zebulon Ferriss and Wife
 John Hoag, Senr. and Wife
 John Hoag, Junr. and Wife
 Jedidiah Wing and Wife
 Josiah Akin and Wife
 Stephen Hoag and Wife
 James Hunt and Wife
 Prince Howland and Wife
 Isaac Haviland and Wife
 Nathn. Birdsall and Wife
 Nathn. Birdsall, Junr. and Wife
 Daniel Chase and Wife
 Edward Wing and Wife
 Abraham Wing and Wife
 Israel Howland and Wife
 David Akin and Wife
 Jonathan Akin and Wife
 Joseph Jinnins and Wife
 Robert Whitely and Wife
 Nathanael Stevenson
 Joseph Hoag
 Abraham Thomas
 Isaac Bull
 Patience Akin
 Desire Chase
 Mary Allen, Widow
 Mersey Fish
 Margaret Akin
 Margery Woolman
 Dinah Gifford, Widow
 Elizab Hunt, Widow
 Abigail Gifford
 Phebe Boudy
 Ann Hepbern
 Sarah Davis
 Ann Corban
 Hannah Birdsall

 3dly  At Nine Partners
 Peter Hallock and Wife
 Moses Haight and Wife
 Aaron Haight and Wife
 Joshua Haight and Wife
 George Soule and Wife
 William Palmer and Wife
 Reuben Palmer and Wife
 Nehemiah Reynolds and Wife
 Peter Palmer and Wife
 Aaron Vail and Wife
 Joseph Haight and Wife
 John Lapham and Wife
 Jonathan Holmes and Wife
 Jonathan Hoag and Wife
 Israel Devil and his Wife
 John Kees and Wife
 Nathaniel Brown and Wife
 Anthony Arnold and Wife
 Caleb Norton and Wife
 Micah Griffin and Wife
 Jacob Haight and Wife
 John Haight and Wife
 Stephen Haight and Wife
 Micah Palmer and Wife
 Andrew White and Wife
 Stephen Hicks and Wife
 Daniel Tobias and Wife
 Ezekiel Hoag and Wife
 William Haight
 Joseph Reynolds
 Obadiah Griffin
 Solomon Haight
 Benjam White
 John Hallock
 David Arnold
 Nathan Bull
 Hannah Thorn
 Hannah Tripp
 Margaret Allen
 Rose Barton
 Sarah Collins
 Bersheba Southerlin
 Sarah Jacocks
 Ruth Mabbit
 Patience Green

 4thly        At Oswegoe
 Samuel Dorland and Wife
 Richard Smith and Wife
 Joseph Smith and Wife
 Samuel Hall and Wife
 Allen Moore and Wife
 John Thomas and Wife
 Lot Tripp and Wife
 Ebenezer Shearman and Wife
 Joshua Sherman and Wife
 Daniel Shepherd and Wife
 John Thomas and Wife
 Josiah Bull
 Zebulon Hoxsie
 Ichabod Bowerman
 David Irish
 Andrew Moore
 Joseph Waters
 Eliah Youmans
 Othniel Allen
 John Carman
 Jesse Irish
 Deborah Reed
 Martha Gifford
 Abigail Adams
 Mary Moore
 Catharine Leaven
 Mary Youman
 Mehetable Devil

 5thly  At Peach Ponds
 Samuel Field and Wife
 Elias Palmer and Wife
 David Palmer and Wife
 Samuel Coe and Wife
 Stephen Field and Wife
 Solomon Field and Wife

Additional names which occur in the minutes of Oblong Meeting, in the
years 1742-1780 (obviously an incomplete list of members):

 Akin, Nathan Fields
 Akin, James
 Akin, Timothy
 Birdsall, Timothy
 Briggs, Zebedy
 Brundige, Edward
 Bunker, Annie
 Chase, Johnan
 Chase, Phynehas
 Clement, James
 Comstock, Thomas
 Dakin, Preserved
 Dickerson, Isaac
 Dickerson, Henry
 Mehitable Devil, Devill, Duvall or Deuell
 Franklin, Thomas
 Falyer, Abraham
 Haviland, Daniel
 Haviland, Benjamin
 Hoag, Enoch
 Hoag, Samuel
 Hall, Joseph
 Hunt, Josiah
 Irish, Joseph
 Irish, Jessee
 Jenkns, Volunteer
 Lancester, Aaron
 Lester, Murray
 Laurelson, Aaron
 Mosher, Wm.
 Moore, Allen
 Norton, Robert
 Osborn, Paul
 Osborn, Isaac
 Peckham, Jos.
 Sherman, Joshua
 Smith, Denten
 Shove, Edward
 Stedwell, Roger
 Sweet, Elnathan
 Benony Sweet
 Taber, Jeremiah, married Delilah Russell
 Wanzer, Moses
 Wing, William
 Wing, Elisabeth
 Wing, Daniel
 Whiteley, Pardon
 Wood, Drusilla, married Israel Howland of Purchase.

[42] Correction of date is by John Cox, Jr., the Librarian of
the Yearly Meeting of the Society of Friends, 315 Rutherford Place; in
whose charge is the original.


The following are the names of those who had accounts at the store of
Daniel Merritt, on Quaker Hill, in 1771, as the names appear in his

 Akin, John, Esq.
 Akin, David, Jr.
 Akin, Thomas
 Allen, Mary, George's mother
 Akin, James
 Akin, Josiah
 Akin, Elisha
 Akin, Stephen
 Akin, Jonathan
 Akin, Abraham
 Akin, Timothy
 Allen, Ephraim
 Allen, Alexander
 Allen, Moses
 Allen, Samuel
 Allen, Thomas
 Allen, George
 Allen, Daniel
 Allen John, Elisha's son
 Allen, John Taylor
 Allen, Elizabeth, widow
 Allen, Mary, Elisha's mother
 Allen, Mary, Elisha's daughter
 Allen, Elisha
 Allen, Sarah, George's wife
 Ashby, Anthony
 Arnold, Joseph
 Arle, Nath., II
 Ackley, David
 Arle, Rebecca
 Andras, Thaddeus
 Alderman, Elisha
 Arnold, Nathaniel
 Briggs, Edward
 Briggs, Jeremiah
 Briggs, William
 Briggs, Henry
 Briggs, Elkanah
 Briggs, Phoebe, widow
 Briggs, Zepheniah
 Briggs, Edward, Junr.
 Briggs, Jeremiah
 Briggs, Thomas, Senr.
 Briggs, Prince
 Briggs, Thoms, Junr.
 Briggs, Anthony
 Briggs, John
 Birdsall, Nathan
 Birdsall, Nathan, Junr.
 Birdsall, James
 Birdsall, Thomas
 Birdsall, Benjamin
 Birdsall, Lemuel
 Bennet, Benj., of Patent
 Brownson, Libe
 Bostwick, Daniel.
 Boult, John, Senr.
 Barnum, Timothy
 Benedic, Aron
 Bowdish, Nathaniel
 Buck, Lydeal, Junr.
 Bostwick, Daniel, Junr.
 Brown, John
 Bennet, Benjamin
 Barnum, David
 Buck, David
 Betts, William
 Birdsley, Johiel.
 Beardsley, Josiah
 Barnum, Zadoc
 Burret, Daniel
 Barley, Abigail
 Boult, John, Junr.
 Billings, Increase
 Brush, Thos., Esq.
 Bosworth, Nathanael
 Beach, David
 Bump, Stephen
 Bowdy, Nathanael
 Bennet, Henry
 Brush, Thomas, Junr.
 Beardsley, Nehemiah
 Boom, Sarah
 Burdick, Ephraim
 Brown, Joseph
 Burtch, Nathanael
 Bull, Abraham
 Brownell, William
 Barlow, David
 Bass, Thomas
 Burrett, Israel
 Burtch, Increase
 Birchard, Jonathan
 Beers, James
 Brayton, Gideon
 Burdick, Nathan
 Brady, William
 Bostwick, Ichabod
 Botheford, Joel
 Bowdy, Moses, Junr.
 Bennet, Richard
 Bush, John Newfair
 Bostwick, Amos
 Benson, Benj.
 Bull, Isaac, Junr.
 Barley, Daniel
 Brownson, Peter
 Bennet, Amos
 Birdsall, Lemuel
 Brown, Wm., schoolmaster
 Burdick, Jessee
 Brownin, Benj.
 Benedic, Abner
 Bracket, John
 Bull, Thomas
 Butler, Nathanael
 Butler, Truelove
 Buck, John.
 Bacon, Wm.
 Bradshaw, James H.
 Beardsley, Elihu
 Brownen, Wm.
 Batchford, Jonathan
 Batchford, Joel
 Brown, Wm. (Dover)
 Buck, Isaac
 Buck, Lydeal
 Burten, Oliver
 Bump, George
 Bowdy, Moses, Junr.
 Barnes, James
 Burteh, Jonathan
 Bennet, David
 Beemus, Thomas
 Brownson, Sarah
 Burtch, Jonathan, 2nd constable
 Burtch, Isaiah
 Bostwick, Robert
 Burdick, Robert
 Burdick, Ephraim
 Bangs, John
 Bruce, James
 Chase, Daniel, Senr.
 Chase, Daniel, Junr.
 Calkin, Elijah
 Close, Reuben, Senr.
 Close, Reuben, Junr.
 Church, Ebenezer, hat maker
 Congo, Joseph
 Chase, Henry
 Chase, Benjamin
 Corbin, Peter
 Covel, Micajah
 Cook, Thomas, laborer
 Camp, Enos
 Croch, Widow
 Campbell, Archabel
 Chase, Joseph
 Chase, John
 Chase, Nathan
 Caswell, John
 Clarke, Richard
 Conger, Jessee
 Conger, Joel
 Campbell, Dunkin
 Corbin, Sarah
 Conger, Joel
 Close, Gideon
 Corbin, Thomas, Junr.
 Cary, Rhoda
 Chase, Benj., Junr.
 Caswell, Reuben
 Collins, Amos
 Covel, Zacheus
 Caswell, Amey
 Carey, Lucy
 Caswell, Robert, Senr.
 Caswell, Robert, Junr.
 Cary, Nathan
 Cary, Rhoda
 Crowfoot, Gideon
 Covel, Seth
 Chase, Stephen
 Coller, Elisha
 Calkin, David
 Chase, Phinehas, Junr.
 Curtis, John
 Cook, Abial
 Chamberlin, John
 Chase, Elizabeth, widow
 Cummins, Isaac
 Calkin, John Doet, doctor
 Canfield, Zarobabel
 Crouch, William
 Churchel, Joseph
 Collins, Caleb
 Calkin, Simon
 Calkin, Nathaniel
 Cary, Lemuel
 Corbin, Thomas, Senr.
 Corbin, Sarah, widow
 Cummins, John
 Caswell, Robert
 Crane, Daniel
 Caswell, Nathan
 Coon, Matthew
 Chase, Abner
 Cummins, John, Ten Mile Hills
 Calkin, James
 Dakin, Thomas
 Deaveal, Joseph
 Dakin, Ruth
 Dakin, Timothy
 Dakin, Preserved
 Dakin, Wooster
 Dakin, Mercy
 Dakin, Simon
 Deaveal, Phillip
 Deaveal, George
 Deaveal, Hannah
 Deaveal, Benj., Junr.
 Deavil, Jonathan
 Deaveal, Abigail
 Deaveal, Michael
 Deaveal, Benj., Senr.
 Deaveal, John
 Deaveal, Abraham
 Doty, Elijah
 Dunk, Thomas
 Darling, Ebenezer, Junr.
 Dutton, Joel
 Dowglass, Thomas, Senr.
 Dowglass, Thomas, Junr.
 Dowglass, Jonathan
 Daviss, Paul
 Dowgleess, Dominy
 Daviss, Henry
 Daviss, Deliverance
 Daviss, Wm.
 Daviss, Benjamin
 Deen, Samuel
 Drinkwater, George
 Dolph, Edward
 Dwalfe, Ezra
 Dubois, Matthew
 Evens, John
 Elliott, David, Senr.
 Elliott, David, Newfairfield
 Elliott, Benj., Senr.
 Elliott, Benj., Junr.
 Elliott, John
 Elliott, David, Junr.
 Elliott, Jonathan
 Elliott, Daniel
 Edwards, Talmage
 Eastman, Joseph
 Eastman, Benjamin
 Eastman, Azariah
 Eastman, Azariah
 Eldeston, Joseph
 Eastman, Hezekiah
 Evens, Thomas
 Eady, Joshua
 Ellwell, Sam. Sen
 Eldridge, Elisha
 Ferriss, Benj., Senr.
 Ferriss, Benj., Junr.
 Ferriss, Benj., 3rd
 Ferriss, Zebulon
 Ferriss, Joseph, Junr.
 Ferriss, Matthew
 Ferriss, Zachariah
 Ferriss, Zebulon
 Ferriss, Gilbert
 Ferriss, Reed
 Ferriss, David
 Field, John
 Field, Samuel
 Finch, Reed
 Finch, Ebenezer
 Flint, Asa
 Franklin, Walter
 Franklin, John
 Fisher, Nathaniel
 Foster, Josiah
 Fuller, Jonathan
 Fairchild, Eleazer
 Fairchild, Alexander
 Giddings, Joseph
 Giddings, Jonathan
 Giddings, Zebulon
 Gregory, Samuel
 Gregory, Ralph
 Gregory, Rivevias
 Gregory, Jeremiah
 Graves, Jedediah
 Graves, Russell
 Gifford, Benj., Senr.
 Gifford, Benj., Junr.
 Gifford, Gideon
 Gifford, Joseph
 Gaylord, Ebenezer
 Gaylord, Benjamin
 Gaylard, William
 Gaylard, Aaron
 Gaylard, Phebe
 Griffin, Phillip
 Gillet, Hezekiah
 Gourham, Ichabod
 Garlick, Reed
 Gray, William
 Garrett, Thomas
 Green, David
 Halaway, John
 Halaway, William
 Howland, Azariah
 Howland, William
 Howland, Israel
 Howland, Prince
 Howland, Nathaniel
 Howland, Sarah
 Howland, Charles
 Howland, Cook
 Howland, Nathaniel, Junr.
 Howland, Peleg
 Howland, Samuel
 Howland, John
 Howland, Silvey
 Howland, Anne
 Hunt, William
 Hunt, Samuel, farmer
 Hunt, Stephen
 Hunt, Elizabeth
 Hunt, Abel
 Hunt, Daniel, Junr.
 Hunt, Timothy
 Hunt, Daniel, Senr.
 Hall, James
 Hall, Lewis
 Hitchcock, John
 Herrington, Moses
 Hatch, Maltier
 Hatch, Benj.
 Holister, Nathaniel
 Holister, Abel
 Holister, Jonathan
 Howard, Edward
 Howard, Edward, Junr.
 Howard, Stephen
 Howard, John
 Hoag, Lydia, Benj. daughter
 Hoag, Amos
 Hoag, David, Junr., carter
 Hoag, Abner, 2
 Hoag, Samuel
 Hoag, John, merchant
 Hoag, Abner, 1
 Hoag, William, carter
 Hoag, Timothy
 Hoag, Elijah
 Hoag, Abigail
 Hoag, Stephen
 Hoag, Joseph
 Hoag, John, merchant
 Hoag, John, 1st
 Hoag, John, 2nd
 Hoag, John, 5th
 Hoag, Ruth S., daughter
 Hoag, Enoch
 Hoag, Peter
 Hoag, Elisha
 Hoag, Sarah N., Benj. daughter
 Hoag, Ebenezer
 Hoag, Abbigail
 Hoag, Wm., Joseph's son
 Hoag, David, Senr.
 Hoag, John, D. son
 Hoag, Daniel
 Hoag, Paul
 Hoag, Tabithy
 Hammond, Jonathan
 Hammond, William
 Hammond, Samuel
 Hammond, Jonathan, Junr.
 Hammond, Benj., cooper
 Hammond, Mary
 Hammond, Elizabeth
 Happern, Anne
 Happern, George
 Hubbell, Gaylard
 Hubbell, Dennis
 Hubbell, Shadrick
 Hubbell, John
 Hubbell, Ephraim
 Hubbell, Eleazer
 Hubbell, Gideon
 Holdridge, Thomas
 Hungerford, Josiah
 Hungerford, Thomas
 Hungerford, Samuel
 Hungerford, Miriam
 Hurd, David, tailor
 Hurd, George, doctor
 Hurd, William
 Howard, Ruth
 Hill, Anne
 Hill, George
 Hill, Henry
 Hill, John
 Hill, Stephen
 Haviland, Dan
 Hill, Caleb, carter
 Haviland, Isaac
 Haviland, Susannah
 Haviland, Solomon
 Haviland, Mary
 Haviland, Joseph
 Haviland, John
 Haviland, Stephen
 Haviland, James
 Holaway, Joseph
 Haviland, Roger
 Haviland, Benj.
 Haviland, Jacob
 Hull, Daniel
 Hains, Solomon
 Hadden, Bartholemew
 Hendrick, John
 Haws, Edmund
 Hilks, Edmund
 Holmes, Thadford
 Hollister, Joseph
 Halms, Thadford
 Hart, Lydia
 Hatfield, Barns
 Hicks, John
 Hicks, Benjamin
 Hawley, Isaac
 Hillerd, Nathan
 Handy, Jude
 Irish, Joseph, farmer
 Irish, Isaac
 Irish, John
 Irish, Jedediah, Senr.
 Irish, Jedediah, Junr.
 Ingersol, Daniel
 Ingersoll, Josiah
 Jewett, Jedediah
 Jewit, Aaron
 Jewit, Isaac
 Johnson, John
 Johnson, Sabin
 Jeffers, Robert
 John, June, Jr.
 Joyce, John
 Kelly, Wing
 Keeler, Ezra, carter
 Kaysson, James, wheelwright
 Kane, John, merchant
 Ketcham, Elihu
 Kent, Seth
 Knapp, Moses
 Knapp, Moses
 Lake, Thomas
 Lake, Judah
 Lake, Thomas, Junr.
 Loveless, Joseph
 Lee, John
 Lee, Asahel
 Lee, John, Jr.
 Leach, Ebenezer
 Leach, Ephraim
 Leach, John
 Leach, James
 Leach, Ichabod
 Leach, Miriam
 Lee, Catherine
 Leach, Simeon
 Leach, Amos
 Leonard, Moses
 Leonard, Isaac
 Leonard, David
 Luddington, Henry
 Langdon, John
 Lester, Murray
 Lewis, Sam.
 Lamphire, Jessee
 Lamphire, Elisha
 Lamphere, John
 Lowrey, John
 Lancaster, Aaron
 Lum, Samuel
 Lacey, Seth
 Loveless, Joseph
 Martin, Aggrippa
 Martin, Ephraim
 Marten, Manasah
 Martin, James
 Mosher, Benj.
 Mosher, Daniel
 Mosher, Lavinia
 Mosher, Jonathan
 Mosher, Hannah
 Mosher, Mary
 Millerd, Phebe
 Millerd, Joshua
 Millerd, Joshua
 Millerd, Jonathan
 Millerd, John Phillips
 Millerd, Robert, Jr.
 Millerd, Jacob
 Menzies, Thomas
 Morgan, Joseph
 Menzies, Alexander
 Menzies, Thomas
 Morgan, Consider
 Miles, Sam.
 Marsh, John
 Marsh, Elihu
 Marsh, Eunice
 Morison, Malcum
 Marsh, Samuel
 Munroe, Sam., Jr
 Munroe, Nathan
 Mead, Daniel, Jr.
 Mead, Jessee
 Man, Sam.
 Man, Dependence
 Merritt, Nehemiah, Jr.
 Millerd, Benajah
 Munroe, Daniel
 Morehouse, John
 Mead, Daniel, Senr.
 Malary, Caleb
 McHerty, Mancey
 Marsey, Ebenezer
 Milk, Job
 McMan, Cornelius
 Noble, Asahel
 Northrop, Amos
 Northrop, Abraham
 Northrop, Salmon
 Northrop, Amos, Jr.
 Northrop, Johannah
 Northrop, Moses
 Northrop, Thomas
 Northrop, David
 Noble, Zadoc
 Noble, Thaddeus
 Noble, Stephen
 Noble, Morgan
 Noble, David
 Noble, Gideon
 Negro, Sip, slave
 Negro, Tone, slave
 Negro, Kajah, slave
 Negro, Jethro, slave
 Nicholas, Rowland
 Nicholas, John
 Nicherson, Seth
 Nickerson, Seth, Jr.
 Norton, Rowland
 Norton, Lydia
 Neerings, John
 Odle, Daniel
 Osborn, Jonathan, Senr.
 Osborn, Paul, potter
 Osborn, Isaac
 Osborn, Jonathan, Jr.
 Osborn, Amos, potter
 Osborn, Aaron
 Osborn, Stephen
 Price, John
 Peasely, Ebenezer
 Picket, Benjamin
 Pickett, Ebenezer
 Peasely, John
 Peasely, Isaac
 Potter, James
 Potter, William
 Potter, Judah
 Pepper, Stephen
 Parce, Jonathan
 Perce, Wm.
 Pepper, John, Jr.
 Pepper, John
 Page, Jonathan, Senr.
 Page, John
 Page, William
 Page, Lydia
 Page, Sarah
 Prindle, Aaron
 Prindle, David
 Prindle, John
 Prindle, Gideon
 Prince, Job
 Parks, Whiten
 Parks, Richard
 Pendegrass, William
 Perry, Sam.
 Perry, Rowland
 Prindle, Dan, Jr.
 Peasely, John
 Prindle, Samuel
 Pourham, John
 Perry, John
 Perry, George
 Parks, Daniel
 Penfield, Peter
 Platt, Samuel
 Penny, Ammial
 Phillips, Samuel
 Patterson, James
 Patterson, Andrew
 Penny, William
 Phillips, Mifford, Jr.
 Pennen, Wright
 Patterson, Alexander
 Palmer, Phinehas
 Putnicholos, Nathan
 Porter, Joshua
 Phelps, Barney
 Phelps, William
 Peek, Phinehas
 Peek, Samuel
 Prosper, Ichabod
 Palmeter, Silvenus
 Pearce, Nathan, Esq.
 Precinct by Andrew Morehouse
 Quinby, Ephraim
 Russell, Elihu
 Russell, William
 Russell, Margaret
 Russell, Samuel
 Russell, Elizabeth
 Ross, Zebulon
 Ross, Daniel
 Ross, Zebulon, Jr.
 Ross, Matthias
 Ross, Hugh
 Richardson, William
 Rennolds, Jeremiah
 Ruggals, Lois
 Ruggals, Joseph
 Rundle, Joseph, Senr.
 Stephens, Thomas
 Stevens, Benj.
 Stephens, Joseph
 Shaw, Phallice
 Shaw, Joseph
 Shaw, Benannuel, farmer
 Shaw, Benj.
 Stewart, Lemuel
 Stewart, James, Jr.
 Stewart, James, Senr.
 Stewart, Alexander
 Stewart, Alexander, 2nd
 Stewart, Samuel
 Stewart, Nathaniel
 Sweet, Ezekiel
 Sweet, Charles
 Sweet, Benedic
 Scribner, Abel
 Scribner, Abraham
 Springer, Richard
 Springer, John
 Scribner, Zadoc
 Springer, Elizabeth
 Sherwood, Daniel
 Stephens, William
 Sherwood, Nathan
 Stevens, William, Jr., carter
 Stillson, Nathan
 Stillson, Enoch
 Stillson, Moses
 Stillson, John
 Smith, Mary
 Smith, John
 Smith, Daniel
 Sprague, John
 Stevens, Peter
 Smith, Richard
 Soule, George
 Soule, Nathan, Jr.
 Soule, John
 Soule, Elizabeth
 Soule, Nathan
 Soule, Joseph
 Shearman, Benj., farmer
 Shearman, Jabez
 Shearman, Justin
 Shearman, Mary W.
 Shearman, Job
 Shearman, Joshua
 Stephenson, Nathaniel
 Stephenson, Nathaniel, Jr.
 Shelden, Isaac
 Shelden, George
 Shelden, John
 Shelden, Joseph
 Shelden, Gideon
 Shelden, Benj.
 Sheldon, Thomas
 Sheldon, Potter
 Sheldon, Sarah
 Seelye, Nathaniel
 Seelye, Benj., Senr.
 Seelye, Ebenezer
 Seelye, Eleanor
 Seelye, Abel
 Seelye, Bradley
 Seelye, Elizabeth
 Spaulden, Nathan
 Spalden, Samuel
 Spaulding, Abijah
 Sill, Elijah
 Starke, William
 Shannon, George
 Slocum, Abraham
 Sill, Uriah
 Slocum, Elizabeth
 Sill, & Bangs
 Slocum, Benj.
 Stephenson, James
 Shove, Edward
 Sturdevant, Jonathan
 Sturdevant, Nathan
 Sturdevant, John
 Sturdevant Esther
 Smith, Noah
 Smith, Gaius
 Starke, James
 Starke, Christopher, Jr.
 Slone, Sam.
 Salsbury, Sarah
 Salmon, Hannah
 Storker, Seth
 Seamen, Stephen
 Stedwell, James
 Stedwell, Gilbert
 Salmon, John
 Sweet, Benedic
 Sabin, Jeremiah, blacksmith
 Seaman, Moses
 Stone, Eathael
 Starke, Aaron
 Shed, Martha
 Sabin, Jeremiah, Senr.
 Shapparoon, Peter
 Stone, Ebenezer
 Thomas, John
 Thomas, Benj.
 Thomas, Abraham
 Thomas, Lewis
 Tripp, John
 Tripp, Experience
 Tallcott, Gaius
 Tripp, Lott
 Towner, Dan
 Towner, David
 Towner, Lois
 Towner, Sam, Senr.
 Towner, Mary
 Towner, Zacheus
 Thatcher, Partridge
 Taber, Job
 Taber, Hannah
 Taber, Thomas, Esq.
 Tuttle, Ebenezer
 Truman, Jonathan
 Tryon, James
 Tryon, Asahel
 Trowbridge, Seth
 Trowbridge, Billey
 Trowbridge, Caleb
 Towner, Sam, Jr.
 Trim, Moses
 Thornton, John
 Tayler, Nathaniel
 Tyler, Bezaleel
 Tryon, Elisabeth
 Ter Boss, Daniel
 Toffey, John, hat maker
 Terry, Peter
 Vaughn, William
 Vaughn, Joseph, weaver
 Vaughn, Benjamin
 Veal, Michael
 Wing, Elisabeth
 Wing, Elihu
 Wing, Thomas
 Wing, Gershom
 Wing, Edward
 Wing, Elisha
 Wing, John
 Wing, William
 Wing, Abram Thomas
 Wing, Prince
 Wing, Russell
 Wing, Daniel
 Willcox, Louis, laborer
 Willcox, Thomas
 Willcox, Eunice
 Willcox, Joshua
 Willcox, Stephen
 Willcox, Rebecca
 Willcox, Rebecca
 Willcox, Jeffrey
 Willcox, Handy
 Willcox, Isaac
 West, Mary
 West, Elijah
 West, Delight
 West, Aaron
 West, Clement
 West, Sarah, Clement's wife
 West, Benajah
 Welch, Paul
 Willcox, Mary
 Willcox, Antras
 Willcox, Sarah
 Willcox, Amos
 Wheeler, Enoch
 Wheeler, Joseph
 Wheeler, Samuel
 Wright, Samuel
 Wright, Kent
 Wright, Dennis
 Wright, Deborah
 Wright, Mary
 Wright, Uriah
 Wright, Abigail
 Wright, Samuel, Jr.
 Weed, Jacob
 Weed, Judah
 Wanzar, Moses
 Wanzar, Abraham
 Wanzar, Anthony
 Wanzar, Abigail
 Wanzar, Abraham, Jr.
 Wanzer, Chester
 Wanzer, Darkis
 Wanzer, Elizabeth
 Warner, Lemuel
 Warner, Oliver
 Warner, Orange
 Wood, Wilber
 Wickham, David
 Wickham, Phebe
 Wilkinson, Ebenezer
 Wickham, Gideon
 Whitely, Robert
 Wickham, John, weaver
 Woodward, Jonathan
 Whitely, Martha
 Weed, Jacob
 Woodard, Joseph
 Woodard, John
 Woodard, Elisabeth
 Woodard, Ephraim
 Williams, Daviss
 Wallace, Nathaniel
 Walsworth, William
 Wade, Jonathan
 Wallups, Jonathan
 Wheeler, Hezekiah
 Washburn, Joseph
 Woolman, Hannah
 Waldo, Jonathan
 Welch, John
 Wilkerson, Robert
 Williams, Marke
 Willmut, Lemuel
 Yates, Paul



Discovered 1906 by WILLIAM RYDER, of Brewster, N. Y.


Zebulon Ferriss, of Oblong, to Benjamin Ferriss, David Akin, Ebenezer
Peaslee, David Hoag, Joseph Irish, Nehemiah Merritt and Abraham Wing,
all of Beekman's Precinct, Dutchess County, 5280 square feet, being 132
feet frontage on north side of road, and 40 feet deep, east of Zebulon
Ferriss' acre lot. Consideration four (4) pounds. Dated, 4.16.1764.
"Recorded in the First Book of Friends' Records for Dutchess County in
the Province of New York, the 24th of ye 4th Mo. 1764, in Folio 89, 90."


William Russell of Oblong, to same grantees, 40 square rods, being 5
rods frontage on north side of road, opposite Friends' old meeting
house, and 8 rods deep. Consideration 8 pounds. (These two deeds seem to
conflict as to direction and area.)

Recorded 4.24.1764 in same volume, page 87 and 88.


Joseph Ferriss and Nathan Gaylor, both of Town of New Milford,
Litchfield Co., Conn., to Dobson Wheeler, and Gaius Talcott of same
town, Benjamin Ferriss, David Akins, Henry Chase, Timothy Dakins, George
Soule, Abraham Wing, Reed Ferriss and Zebulon Ferriss, of York
Government, land in New Milford "in the Common Field, by the side of the
Great River at the south end of the Indian Field lots, a top of the hill
East of the road, as goes to Danbury. The Meeting House of the People
called Quakers' Stands, on the said land. We had it of Benjamin Ferriss
and David Noble the quantity to be seen on the records and it all the
Land we are possessed of on the East Side of that Road bounded North and
West on the road that goes to Danbury, East on the River." Dated July
6th, 1762.


Acknowledged before John Hitchcock, J. P. Recorded July 7, 1762, in New
Milford, 9th Book of Records, page 667.


Nicholas Wanzer of New Fairfield, Fairfield Co., Conn., to "the society
of people called Quakers," one acre in New Milford, with Meeting House,
etc. thereon. Consideration 2 pounds, 10 shillings. Dated 11.21.1788.
Recorded in New Milford, 16th Book of Records, page 484. This does not
seem to be the property described in above deed of Joseph Ferriss, this
being on the "west side of the Grate Rode that goes north and south
through the plain."

Daniel Haviland of Southeast precinct, Dutchess County, to Joseph Irish,
Edward Shove, Reed Ferriss and Wing Kelley, of Pawling's precinct and
Elnathan Sweet and Joseph Lancaster, of Beekman's precinct and Benjamin
Ferriss of New Milford, Conn., for the people called "Quakers," one acre
and 70 rods, in South East precinct. Consideration, love of the Society.
Dated 8.12.1782. Not recorded.


Roger Haviland, of New Fairfield, Conn., to same grantees, one acre and
30 rods in South East precinct. Consideration, love of the Society.
Dated 8.12.1782. Not recorded. This would seem to join the property
given by Daniel Haviland.


John Hoag, of Pawling's precinct, to Nathan Soule, Edward Shove and
Thomas Haight, of Pawling's, 42 rods, on East Side of the highway in
north end of Lot 38 of the Oblong. Consideration, love of the Society.
Dated, 2.12.1784. Recorded in Oblong M. M. minutes for 2nd month, 1784.


Isaiah Hoag, of Pawling's precinct to Nathan Soule, Edward Shove, Abner
Hoag, Thomas Haight, Azariah Howland and Isaac Osborn, of Pawling's
precinct, 1-1/2 acres in Pawling's precinct, for pasturing Friends'
horses, etc. Consideration 10 pounds. Dated 7.30.1786. Not recorded.
(Branch Meeting House.)


Daniel Wing, of Pawling's precinct, to same grantees as above, 45 rods,
for building a meeting house, etc. Consideration 5 pounds. Dated
9.18.1786. Not recorded. (Branch Meeting House.)


Abner Hoag of Town of Dover, Dutchess Co., to M. M. of Oblong, 27 rods,
adjoining the meeting house lot, "now called Branch Meeting."
Consideration $7.50. Dated 5.21.1811. Not recorded.

List of Deeds belonging to Oblong M. M. 5th Mo., 1788.


The author of this dissertation was born May 1, 1867. He received from
Oberlin College the degree of A. B. in 1890, and that of A. M. in 1894.
He graduated from Union Theological Seminary in 1894, and has since
served as an active pastor at Quaker Hill and in Brooklyn, New York.
While in the Seminary and also during the years 1903-1905 he was a
graduate student in Columbia University, having especial interest in the
lectures of Professor Franklin H. Giddings; to whom as to his associates
on the Faculty of Political Science, he owes a debt of gratitude for a
conception of the common life of men on the earth.

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allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.