Thomas Frothingham Letter




Meaning of the Frothingham Name
Biography of Jacob F Spalding
Thomas Frothingham Letter
Richard and Thomas Frothingham Jrís Years in Ellsworth County, Kansas, 1886-1888
First Presbyterian Church, Galesville, Wisconsin


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The following transcription came to me from Don Frothingham, who received it from his grandfather, Donald Y. Frothingham. The elder Donald passed on a great deal of information about Thomas Frothingham and his descendants. This letter was in the possession of the Archbald family of Pennsylvania, probably through Thomasís daughter, Augusta, who married James Archbald. It is believed to have been written by Thomas Frothingham (1755-1827) to his son Gideon, about 1810.

My dear son:

As an outline of the general course of my life may not, at some future time be unacceptable to you, you must know that I am the second son of William Frothingham and that I was born 27th of January 1755. At or about seven years of age, I was put to a common reading school and soon after to writing and common arithmetic , where I continued until between 14 and 15, when I was put apprentice to Benjamin Frothingham to learn the trade of cabinet maker, with whom I remained until the 19th April 1775.

The public mind had been a long time much agitated at the oppressive acts of the British government and the youth of the country, everywhere alert to learn the military art, a number of my age and acquaintance had associated and formed a company of artillery, and to perfect ourselves in the exercises we got a wooden gun and had it mounted on a carriage, procured the necessary implements and deposited them in a secret place, where we held our meetings and got such instructors as were at that time to be procured, by whose instruction we had become some acquainted with the management of artillery. After the 19th April hostilities having commenced and the country beginning to form themselves into the form of an army, my master having taken a commission as Lt. of Artillery under Capt. Chadwick, an old experienced engineer, I enlisted into the company for 8 months. In Janíy 76, my term of office being out, I was entreated by Lt. Frothingham, who was then appointed Captain of the company, to enter for one year and was promised promotion, as on enlistment the most of the old company would enlist. The company was soon again formed, and in April following was marched to New York. In June I was placed in the laboratory, then conducted by Capt. Corsin, the most experienced fireworker to be found in the colonies. On the retreat of our army from N.Y. in the September following, I was appointed Conductor of Military Stores, which office I held until the month of September 1779, when I was appointed by the Board of War a Field Deputy Commissary of Military Stores, and the post assigned to me was West Point, which office I held until the close of the war.

In 1784, then in New York, I formed a connection in trade with Benjamin Gorton, who told me of an intended mercantile settlement on the North River at Claverack Landing, afterward incorporated the City of Hudson. He immediately went forward and engaged a lot of ground and procured the materials necessary for a store, and on the 13th September the same year, I joined him at the Landing, and we proceeded to erect the store. We continued the connection about six years and then by mutual consent, dissolved. The store and stock coming into my hands, I continued the business until 1805 , when a number of gentlemen had associated themselves to establish a glass manufactory somewhere easterly from Albany, and I was invited by a worthy friend (one of the associates) to take the management of the establishment, and on the 5th of July the same year, I commenced my agency.


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Meaning of the Frothingham Name | Biography of Jacob F Spalding | Thomas Frothingham Letter | Richard and Thomas Frothingham Jrís Years in Ellsworth County, Kansas, 1886-1888 | First Presbyterian Church, Galesville, Wisconsin

This site was last updated 01/15/12