Sunday, July 13, 2014

Jane Noyes Lunt and Joseph Lunt. Not Lost To Memory

A Personal Reflection

     On Tuesday, my husband Joel and I took our grandson Aidyn  on Gramp's 15 foot aluminium boat out to Fort Gorges to explore.  It was a gorgeous day and a first for our grandson. who, though a bit reluctant, had a great experience and used my camera to capture the old fort.  Later, we decided to explore Back Cove,  so off we went travelling under the old trestle bridge.  At the top, standing watch was Pappa Osprey, the sentry.  At the magnificently constructed nest, keeping a watchful eye on us as we sailed by, was Momma.  Unfortunately, my telephoto lens decided to act up and would not retract; thus, no pictures.  

     Although not specific to our story of East Deering and the Grand Trunk Cemetery, I thought that readers who have never gone out to explore Fort Gorges on Hog's Ledge  Island might enjoy some of the photos taken by my grandson before my camera stopped working.

For Gorges was built to support other existing forts in Casco Bay after the War of 1812.
However, Congress did not fund the construction until 1857 and the fort
 was finally completed in 1865 after the end of the Civil War.
  Here is the entrance.

The path leading to the parade ground and interior.
The Fort was named for Sir Ferdinando Gorges, a colonial proprietor of Maine.
The Fort's armament consisted of thirty-four 1o - inch Rodman guns mounted in the fort's casemates.  There is but one remaining survivor; a 10 - inch Parrott rifle, Civil War vintage, which remains in place at the top level of the fort.

Fort Gorges was last used during World War II, when
it was a storage facility for  submarine mines.  In 1960, it was acquired by
the city of Portland and placed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Boy reflecting!

     As we were leisurely moving through the calm water, I (being a visual and imaginative person) began to look at the expanse of theCove as it might have been to those first emigres from the Colony who settled in the back country.  No Tukey's Bridge(until 1796) to connect the peninsula to East Deering!  No busy roads with vehicles.  Few houses and schools or Bean Factory.  Only trees, marshland and  meadows that had been cleared for planting, a few farms for the subsistence of families who came to settle and build their lives., a few boatyards.

      I thought about the first, predominately English, Scots and Irish men who came to the Northern district of Maine from Newbury or Gloucester, and settled in East Deering, and who bought property from some of the old proprietors of Ancient Falmouth.  Among the names we recognize are:  Isaac Sawyer, Sr and Jr., Col. Isaac Illsley and Col. Joseph Noyes, Anthony Sawyer and his brothers, and Capt. James Lunt, Timothy Galvin and others, who settled in the villages around the Cove. 

This is the monument dedicated to the first settlers of Newbury, Massachusetts.
Many of the names are those of the forefathers of our own
East Deering Village settlers.

     I thought about how people traveled the long way around the Cove to get to the busy Port or to other areas that connected them to business and craftsmen,  places of worship, entertainments, and to other settlements.  I thought about the tidal inlets, some of which are all but gone today, covered over by pavement, or filled in to accommodate modern life.

     Into my reveire, crept an image of the old Meadow Road (today's Washington Avenue) the main thorough fare for East Deering residents and Lunt's Corner, the connector to the Old Back Cove Road (Ocean Avenue) to travel to West Falmouth ( there was  no Presumpscot Street) or in the opposite direction, to Woodford's Corner to Green (Forest Avenue) to Sacarrapa (Westbrook)  and other routes to take them to Stroudwater Village.  When  Quaker Lane was brought down to meet the Meadow Road at Abbots Corner (Allen Avenue) it allowed another route to Stevens Plain.  

     The leisurely little boat trip somehow connected all that I have been reading and researching about Jane and Joseph Lunt and has enhanced my historical perspective.  As I have said so often, those mischief-makers who destroyed the old monuments at the East Deering/Grand Trunk Cemetery robbed us of so much history and the stories of those early settlers.  The only indication of where Jane and Joseph were actually interred is in a partial surviving list that gives Section I as the area of burial.  Where is Section I; we have no clear idea. 


     I want to begin by acknowledging the sources I used for this post, to give readers a place to go if they want to pursue their own research.  First of all, Theodore Sawyer's Back Cove to Quaker Lane  gives an accurate account of the people, places and transactions that were important to the history of East Deering.  Maine Historical Society Library has this manuscript.  A new favorite source for me is the book Deering;  A Social And Architectural History by William David Barry and Patricia McGraw Anderson.  A third source of information about the Lunt family is The Ancestry of Abel Lunt of Newbury, Massachusetts, 1769 - 1806, by Walter Goodwin Davis.  

Jane Noyes Lunt

     Jane Noyes was born c. 1754 to Col. Peter Noyes and Hannah (Merrill) Noyes in Falmouth, York County, Maine.  She was the only daughter of four children born to the couple.  Her brothers were Amos, Hutchinson, and Dean Noyes.  Her paternal Grandparents were Capt. /Col. Joseph Noyes and Jane (Dole) Noyes.  Her maternal Grandparents were Peter Merrill and Mary (Bayley/Bailey) Merrill.

     Jane married Joseph Lunt on February 22nd, 1785.  The couple were married by Rev. Samuel Dean according to the old marriage record.

     Joseph and Jane had one son, Peter who was born in 1786.  The Lunt house, according to Theodore Sawyer, was on the "northeast corner of the Meadow Road (Washington Avenue) and the Back Cove Road (Ocean Avenue).  I will share the photograph taken by Leonard Bond Chapman, around 1898 of the Lunt home.

     The Noyes homestead, according to Ted Sawyer, "was on the easterly side of our Morse Street at the juncture of the Old Back Cove Road (Ocean Avenue).  The two families intermarried so those names are evident." 

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find any surviving photographs.

     Before going into the lineage of Jane and Joseph, we'll skip ahead to April 30, 1811 and Theodore Sawyer's account of the division of property from the estate of Jane's brother, Amos Noyes and its connection to the East Deering/Grand Trunk Cemetery.

     Amos Noyes will is interesting to me because there is no mention of his brother, Dean.  Perhaps he had died by then.  It also mentions Peter Noyes, who I assume was his father since I could find no other Peter Noyes.  However, Col. Peter Noyes died on March 5, 1755.  How long before Amos's death he wrote his will, I haven't been able to determine.  

     The document is also interesting because, Timothy Galvin was engaged to plot out the division of property for the five heirs.  Tim Galvin was a school Master who was a very gifted mathematician and surveyor.  It is also interesting to note that Peter Lunt's portion seemed to encompass the entire cemetery.

Joseph Lunt

     Joseph Lunt was born on April 3, 1757 to Capt. James Lunt and Hannah (Noyes) Lunt.  He was the youngest of four sons.  His paternal Grandparents were:  Benjamin Lunt and Hannah (Noyes) Lunt. ( The family relationships will be clearer when I include the lineage.)  Joseph's maternal Grandparents were:  Capt./Col. Joseph Noyes and Jane (Dole) Noyes. (Note:  Joseph Lunt is referred to in some original documents as: Captain Joseph Lunt.)

     I believe this may refer to his ownership of a sailing vessel, not a military rank.  Joseph Lunt died at the age of 47 years on September 15, 1804.  He predeceased his wife Jane, who died on September 12, 1834 by 30 years.  She was 80 years old at the time of her death.  There is no indication she ever remarried.

No doubt about the close relationships between the Noyes and Lunt Families.

      I am including this portion of Benjamin Lunt's will because of the interesting piece about Capt. James Lunt and how he came to Old Falmouth.  It's possible he was the gentlemen who established the Lunt homestead, and from whom Lunt's Corner received its name.  Capt. James Lunt, Col. Peter Noyes, Col. Joseph Noyes, Amos Noyes and others listed in the genealogies of both families served either in the Continental Army or the local Militia during the Revolutionary War. 

      Special Note:  it is possible that Joseph Lunt also served in the Cumberland Company of the Militia with the rank of Corporal.  If we can verify his service, we maybe able to petition for a government issued memorial stone.

     I have much more to share about the Lunts of East Deering Village that could fill many more pages.  For now, I'd like to share this piece from the Lunt genealogy about Joseph Lunt's death.  It is a rare glimpse into the character of the man and how he was regarded by others.