History of Newfield, Maine
From
A Gazetteer of the
State of Maine

By Geo. J. Varney
Published by B. B. Russell, 57 Cornhill,
Boston 1886





Newfield, in the north-western part of York County, is a part of the tract conveyed to Francis Small of Kittery, Indian trader, by Captain Sunday, a sagamore in the region in 1668. The tract lay between the Ossipee and Little Ossipee rivers, which when laid out into townships were generally spoken of as the five Ossipee towns. From all the information now attainable, it appears that the larger part of landed estate in town is held by titles derived from the Francis Small and Cape Ann rights. A survey of this tract was made in 1778, by John Wingate, and the number of acres found to be 14,543. The territory was enlarged in 1846 by the annexation from Shapleigh of 600 or 800 acres in the south-eastern part of the town, below the Little Ossipee river. For a number of years it was called Washington Plantation. At its incorporation in 1794, the present name of Newfield was adopted.

Of the early settlers, Nathaniel Doe came in the year 1777; Zebulon Libby and Paul McDonald in 1777; Leander Nelson came in 1780, settling in West Newfield. Rev. John Adams moved his family here in 1180. William and Eben Symmes of Ipswich, Revolutionary soldiers, came about 1780. Samuel Dam of Waterborough, built a grist-mill and saw-mill at what is now Newfield village, between 1780 and 1784. Josiah Towle came from Epping, N. H., to Hiram, thence to Limerick, and in 1790, to Newfield, where he opened a store. He was the first representative to the General Court of Massachusetts. William Durgin came from Limerick with his father and a brother about 1798. He built a saw-mill and grist-mill at the upper village, and in 1801 a store. Other Revolutionary soldiers who settled in Newfield, were Robert Thompson, William Libby, Nicholas Kennison, Stephen Wood, James Heard,William Campernell, Sirneon Tibbetts, and others. Ten men from the militia were called to the defense of the seaboard in the war of 1812. Newfield furnished 96 men for the army during the war of the Rebellion, 20 of whom were killed in battle or died of wounds or sickness. Other eminent citizens were Thomas Adams, son of Rev. John Adams, Gamaliel E. Smith, and Nathan Clifford; and of natives who became eminent in their sphere are Caleb R. Ayer and Ira T. Drew, prominent lawyers of the York County bar, Charles W and Horace Tuttle, formerly connected with the Harvard College Observatory, the former connected later with the Boston bar, and the latter in the navy. James Ayer, M.D., settled in town in 1805, Dr. N. L. Marston settled in 1824, Dr. Stephen Adams in 1829.

The business centres are Newfield village on the Little Ossipee river in the eastern part of the town, West Newfield, a little west of the centre, and North Newfield midway of the line on the northern side. At the village are two grist-mills, lumber, stave, shook and planing mills, carding machine; West Newfield has saw, grist and stave mills, one of each; at North Newfield, the principal business is the mining and preparation of a mineral used in the manufacture of stone, earthen, porcelain and glass ware, and for polishing lustre. Silver and iron have been mined in town, but not with profit. Limestone is found in a few localities. The Free Baptists and Congregationalists have each a church in town, and the Methodists have two. The town has eight public schoolhouses, valued at $5,000. The valuation of estates in 1870 was $298,895. In 1880 it was $264,577. The population at the same date was 1,493. In 1880 it was 995.

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