New Hampshire WWI Military: Private George Clayburn of Piermont

Photograph postcard: “Arrival of Lightning
[78th] Division in Semur-en-Auxois” After
Armistice, 1918-1919. WWI Scrapbook, College
of William & Mary Digital Archive.

Piermont New Hampshire had less than 600 residents during World War I. Following that war the number of citizens would plummet to 475 by 1930 and then rise and fall until there was continuous slow growth beginning in 1980. The town sent around 10 men–its full quota that was less than 2% of its total population. Besides George Clayburn, those from Piermont who enlisted and were sent to Europe were John A. Ames (134th Field Artillery), George’s brother William Albert Clayburn (Co E, 14th Railway Engineers to Company D, 11th Engineers), Edward S. Lebeaux (Co K, 103rd Infantry), and Harry A. Wilson (Co. C, 103rd Infantry). Continue reading

The Face of Zora (Drown) Dodge of Piermont New Hampshire (1838-1872)

Zora Drown, later Zora Dodge of Sheffield VT and Piermont NH. The photograph is dated to the years of the Civil War.

Zora Drown, later Zora Dodge of Sheffield VT and Piermont NH. The photograph is dated to the years of the Civil War.

She was born Zora Drown in the village of Sheffield in Caledonia County Vermont, the 8th of 12 children born to Amos & Olive (Crouch) Drown. She married George Dodge, a farmer, and moved with him to Piermont in Grafton County, New Hampshire.

Even today that town has a small population, only 790 residents. During the summer, and also during the autumn tourist season, the population swells a bit.

Zora would have lived in Piermont before New Hampshire really even had a tourist season. In 1850 the town had 948 people, a drop of 10% from the year before. By 1860 the town had only gained one person to 949. By 1870 numbers dipped again to 1792 and the census continued its downward trend to 1970 when it saw 475 people. Continue reading

Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient: Piermont NH’s Nathaniel Churchill Barker (1836-1904)

A sketch of Sergeant Nathaniel C. Barker from Boston Herald (Boston MA), Thursday, October 14, 1897, page 9.

A sketch of Sergeant Nathaniel C. Barker from Boston Herald (Boston MA) in 1897, when he received his Medal of Honor.

The town of Piermont is celebrating the 250th anniversary of its founding this year (2014).   According to the Gazeteer of Grafton County NH by Hamilton Child, in 1880 Piermont had a population of 752 souls. By 2010 it had only 38 more residents for a total of 790.

Nathaniel Churchill Barker was born in that tiny New Hampshire town on 28 September 1836, the son of carpenter, Samuel Barker and his wife Sally Jackson. He received at least a basic education in the local schools before his family moved to Manchester, NH, evidenced by the diaries that he kept during the Civil War. Of the 3,464 Medals of Honor awarded to date, 1522 were awarded during the American Civil War. One of these recipients was Nathaniel C. Barker.  Continue reading