Monday, November 22, 2010

Caleb S. Haskell - One of the Oldest Twins in the U.S.

Many of my Haskell ancestors lived in New Gloucester, Maine. I have found several interesting old newspaper articles in the Lewiston Evening Journal at the Google News site that provide some interesting glimpses into the past of this town. Here is an April 16, 1903 article about the death of Caleb S. Haskell  who had the distinction of being one of the oldest twins in the United States at the time of his death. 

Here is my transcription of the article

Caleb S. Haskell, Was One of New Gloucester's Oldest Citizens.
A Sister Survives Him, Aged Eighty-nine Years.
They Had the Distinction of Being the Oldest Twins in the United States.
     NEW GLOUCESTER, Me. April 16 (Special). -- Caleb S. Haskell of this town died early this A.M. after a short illness. He was stricken on Wednesday with acute kidney trouble. His family was hopeful of his recovery until Monday, when new complications developed.
     Wednesday he showed a marvelous revival of strength. But the power to hold this new condition failed rapidly and he lost his hold gradually on life, passing away quietly as one going asleep. This was just six days after taking his bed.
     Mr. Haskell in personal characteristics was a most affectionate and cherished husband and father.
     By reason of his age and his keen mental faculties Mr. Haskell was considered an authority on local history. Throughout the village he was known for his kindness of heart and benevolence to the poor and suffering.
     Mr. Haskell is survived by a twin sister, Mrs. Judith P. Bradbury, now living in Roxbury, Mass. Before Mr. Haskell's death, they had the distinction of being the oldest living twins living in New England and probably in the United States.
     They were born in New Gloucester, Aug. 14, 1814. Their parents, Caleb and Judith Collins Haskell had 12 children of whom 10 grew to maturity. Five of them were black-eyed and five blue; five right-handed and five left-handed. Their father, who lived to the ripe age of 91, had a twin sister who reached the age of 87.
     Caleb S. Haskell always was a resident of New Gloucester, except for a short time when he worked at the mason's trade in Boston, and was employed in the construction of the Boston custom house. He worked as a carpenter considerably and also devoted much attention to farming. Feb. 10, 1840, he married Martha P. Rowe, a daughter of Jonathan and Sarah Pierce Rowe of New Gloucester, who survives him. Both Mr. and Mrs Haskell were for many hears members of the choir of the New Gloucester Congregational church. Mr. Haskell never found it necessary to use glasses. He always totally abstained from the use of both tobacco and intoxicants. Of their three children the only one living is Newell P. Haskell, deputy collector of internal revenue with headquarters in Portland.

© 2010, copyright William C. Haskell

No comments:

Post a Comment