Boscawen New Hampshire: From Carter’s Tavern to The Kettle & Crane

The Old Homestead Inn, Boscawen NH, formerly Carter's Tavern, aka The Kettle & Crane

In this postcard being called “The Old Homestead Inn,” Boscawen NH, was first known as  Carter’s Tavern, later the The Kettle & Crane, today known as the Winthrop Carter House.

Taverns, inns, and houses of entertainment were an integral part of early colonial America society. They were not only a resting place for travelers, but also an important gathering place where local and national news could be gained and shared. Whether you traveled on foot, horseback, by oxen-drawn cart or later by horse-drawn stagecoach, the sign of an inn was often a welcome sight for the weary or thirsty. Licenses to provide liquor were purchased of the town by the inn owners. Mail packets were left at these places to be picked up at a later date by the intended recipient.

These essential stopping-off places dotted the trails, post roads, toll-roads, turnpikes and highways of New Hampshire.  Stage-coach routes developed, with Boscawen being one of the important locations for those traveling both south-north and west-east within the state.  The advent of the railroad rang the death knoll for many of these small hostels.

One ancient tavern (located at 215 King Street in Boscawen NH) continued to be used as both a family dwelling, and off-and-on as an inn and rooming-house, into the 20th century. The lovely building, still known today by locals as the old Kettle and Crane Inn, should really be called the Winthrop Carter Homestead.  The structure was the second frame building built in the town of Boscawen, New Hampshire, in 1764 by Lieutenant Winthrop Carter.  He built the front part of the current building, and planted an elm tree nearby.  He is noted as applying for a tavern license as early as 12 Oct 1790,  and in 1794 he was licensed as a taverner to sell ‘spiritous liquors’ (sic). [Editor’s note: In December 2014 it was purchased with the new owners calling it the Winthrop Carter House — finally named after its original owner].

Lieut. Winthrop Carter on the payroll during the American Revolution

Lieut. Winthrop Carter on the payroll during the American Revolution

WINTHROP CARTER [built 1764, tavern as early as 1790]
Winthrop Carter was my 5th great grand uncle–his sister Anne Carter married William Corser, my direct ancestors]. Winthrop Carter was an important man in Boscawen and New Hampshire history. The History of Boscawen & Webster NH, by Coffin, page 111 related that: “Under Captain Henry Gerrish, Winthrop Carter was one of the men on 21st who were on the march after the attack of the British at Lexington on April 21, 1775.
We may think of them as assembling at Fowler’s tavern, at the lower end of King Street, with their guns and powder-horns, and possibly, here and there, a citizen carried a knapsack. They fill their canteens with rum at Mr. Fowler’s bar, and take a
parting drink with their neighbors. We see them crossing ‘Town-house Brook,’ and hear the tramp of their marching as they pass over Contoocook bridge. The news must have reached town on the morning of the 20th. Captain Peter Coffin saddled his horse and started for Exeter where we find him on the 21st, in consultation with sixty-eight other delegates–“to consult what measures shall be brought most expedient to take in this alarming crisis.” During the American Revolution, Winthrop Carter signed the Association Test in 1776 for the Town of Boscawen, and was mentioned in the diary of Captain Henry Gerrish. Also during the American Revolution he participated in the Winter Campaign on the Hudson, and the Defense of Rhode Island.  He was a Town Officer in 1771.  More details of his life below.

GENEALOGY:  Winthrop Carter (Thomas-4, Thomas-3, John-2), son of Thomas & Judith (Colby) Carter, Jr. was born in 1736, and died 8 June 1808.  He married in 1757 to Susannah Eastman-4 (Joseph-3, Benjamin-2, Roger-1).  She was born in Boscawen NH in 1738, daughter of Joseph & Dorothy Eastman, and died 9 May 1828. They lived in Boscawen, N.H.  Lieutenant Carter held various trusts and offices in town, was a large landholder in Boscawen and Canterbury, N.H. In the 1750s [French and Indian War], Winthrop carter was one of a company commanded by Capt. Joseph Eastman, along with Moses Manuel, Samuel Manuel, Joseph Eastman, Andrew Bohonnon, William Jackman and John Fowler. He was licensed as an innkeeper October 12, 1790, and kept a tavern “in house lately occupied by N.S. Webster,” the front part of which he built, and planted the elm standing near.  In 1797 he was one of the selectmen of Boscawen who signed the agreement setting the boundary between the towns of Boscawen and Concord NH.  In 1802-3 he on list of people offering sums to have the state of New Hampshire’s capital building built in Boscawen (as history shows it ended up being built elsewhere). Winthrop and Susannah are buried in Plains Cemetery in Boscawen NH.  His tombstone reads: Near this spot rest the remains of WINTHROP CARTER, Settler of the Revolution. Died June 8, 1808, aged 72 years. Susannah Eastman his wife died 9 May 1828, aged 90 years. [some of this information from History and Genealogy of the Eastman Family of America, Volumes 1-5, by Press of I.C. Evans, 1901, page 104].
From the History of Boscawen & Webster, New Hampshire
page 108
In 1773 he is called “Constable Winthrop”
In 1783 a newspaper article for non payment of taxes identifies him as Constable.
In 1794 a newspaper article noted on 20 February a public auction to be held “at the house of Lt. Winthrop Carter, innhold in Boscawen” [Mirrour, Concord NH, 24 February 1794, Vol II, Issue 70, Page 4]
page 251
Boscawen furnished three soldiers for the winter campaign on the Hudson–Lieut. Winthrop Carter, John Uran, Samuel Burbank.
page 148
1793. “The following taverners were licensed to sell spirituous liquors during the year, showing that the public were accommodated with at least four hotels: Simeon Atkinson and Col. Henry Gerrish on Fish street, Capt. Thomas Choat on High Street, and Winthrop Carter in the house now occupied by Nathaniel Webster, on the Plain…..”
Children of Winthrop & Susanna (Eastman) Carter:
i. Jesse Carter, b. Aug 17, 1758, d. Aug 17, 1828
ii. Daniel Carter b Dec 19, 1759; d. March 4, 1840; m. Polly Atkinson.
iii. +Nathan Carter, b. April 6, 1761; d. Sept 25, 1840 [kept tavern at the place now occupied by C.C. Hall; m. Sarah Farnum, West Concord. This is probably not his father’s estate, as during the same time period David Elliot is mentioned as owning the Carter homestead.] [notes from Henrietta Kenney, Boscawen Historical Society: “now 174 King Street.  Winthrop first sold to Jeremiah 1791, he died 1801, went to Nathan 1802.  Last John Greenough 1815.  He was on Water Street in Doug Hartford’s house from 1826 – 1840 (BHS 1983 History)”]
iv. Dorothy Carter, b. 1762; m. Josiah Eastman of Bradford VT
v. Jeremiah Carter, b. April 26, 1764; d. July 28, 1801; m. May 27, 1795 Hannah Gerrish
vi. Judith Carter, b. 1766; d. May 16, 1785
vii. Sarah Carter, b. April 6, 1769; d. May 12, 1796; m. Joshua Jackman
viii. Humphrey Carter, b 1771; Left home and never heard from
ix. Mary Carter, b. May 7, 1773; m. John Gile (Gill) and died March 27, 1850
x. Betsey Carter, b. –; m. Albert Flanders and died in Hyde Park VT
xi. Naomi Carter, b April 9, 1780; d. Aug 12, 1852; m. Caleb Putney
xii. +Susannah Carter, b May 25, 1782; d. Feb 2, 1858/or 1855; m. David Elliot [David-5 Elliot, John-4, John-3, Francis-2, William-1) was b. 1776 in Boscawen NH and d. 4 March 1871 in Boscawen.

 MOSES SWETT [1 August 1795 store, English, West-India Goods, Crockery and Glass Ware, probably in a different location on the Plains.  In January of 1796 he owns the Carter Tavern, using it as “A House of Entertainment.” He sells this establishment in 1798.]
Moses Swett, son of Abraham & Sarah (Bradley) Swett, was born 17 May 1770 in Haverhill MA; d. 14 Sep 1819 in Concord NH [newspaper account says he died in Louisiana].  He m. 4 April 1792 in Concord NH to Sarah “Polly” “Sally” Hanaford, dau of Benjamin & Ruth (Page) Hanaford. She was born 16 April 1771 in Concord NH, and d. 19 Dec 1863 in Lynn, Essex Co. MA.  He served a clerk for William Duncan circa 1791, and in 1792 dissolved a co-partnership with his brother Joseph a store of “India, English and other Goods, as cheap as can be afforded.” He purchased the former Carter’s Tavern in 1795, and sold it in 1798. Moses was Lt. in U. S. Army in 1799, Capt. in 1807, and Brevet Major in 1817 (Stackpole’s “Swett Genealogy”).
Concord Herald, Concord NH March 16, 1791, Vol II, Issue 9, page 4
Advertisement by William Duncan for whom Moses Swett served as a clerk, left him.
Concord Herald (Concord NH) April 18, 1792, Vol III, Issue 12, page 3
MARRIED, on Wednesday evening the 4th instant, Mr. Moses Swett, of Haverhill, Massachusetts, to Miss Sally Hannaford, daughter of Benjamin Hannaford, of this town.
Columbia Centinel (Boston MA) Vol XVII Issue 42, page 167
Saturday, August 4, 1792
The Co-partnership of Joseph & Moses Swett, was by mutual consent, dissolved this day. All persons having demands, or who are indebted to said Company are desired to settle the same with Moses Swett, one of the late partners. [signed] Joseph Swett, Moses Swett. N.B. Said Moses Swett continues his business as usual, in the same store late occupied by the company. Where he has for sale, India, English and other Goods, as cheap as can be

from August 29, 1795 Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH) Vol VI, Issue 30; Page 4

from August 29, 1795 Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH) Vol VI, Issue 30; Page 4

afforded. Haverhill, July 27, 1792.
August 29, 1795 Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH) Vol VI, Issue 30; Page 4
Informs the Public, that he has
opened a Store, in Boscawen,
on the Plain between Mr.
Dix’s Store [170 King] and Esq.
Fowler’s Tavern,
Where he has for Sale,
English and West-India
Crockery and Glass Ware,
Iron and Steel,
[and more see notice]
dated August 1, 1795
Monday, January 25, 1796
Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH), Vol VI, Issue 51, page 4
Informs the public, that he has opened
A House of Entertainment,
at that convenient stand lately occupied by Lieut. Winthrop Carter, on Boscawen Plain, nine miles from Concord; where the utmost attention will be paid to Travellers and Everything provided for the comfort and convenience of Man and Beast. (the ad goes on to note what he has for sale)
Boscawen, Dec. 28, 1795.
November 17, 1798– NOTICE
Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH) Saturday, November 17, 1798;
Vol IX, Issue 42, Page 2
That excellent stand for a Tavern,
situate upon the plain in Boscawen (having a genteel house, convenient
out-houses, fine privilege of water, and ten acres of good land) lately occupied
by Mr. Moses Swett.
Terms, the most liberal, may be known
by applying to the subscriber, living
within 60 rods of the premises.
Boscawen, Nov 3, ’98 [1798]
Mirrour (Concord NH) Vol VII, Issue 322, Page 1
Monday December 31, 1798
Informs the public, that he has removed
from Boscawen to Salisbury, and taken that
eligible situation a few rods east of the Congregational
Meeting-house where he keeps a House of Entertainment
[see notice]
Salisbury, Dec 11, 1798.
New Hampshire Patriot and State Gazette (Concord NH) — Nov 9, 1819, page 3–Obituary: At the Bay of St. Louis (Louisiana) Major Moses Swett of the Corps of U.S. artillery, and formerly of this town–“correct as an officer and amiable in his deportment.”
Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army, from it’s Organization, September 29, 1789, to March 2, 1903 by Francis B Heitman [from Fold3]
page 792
Swett, Moses, NH. NH. 2 lt 16 inf 8 Jan 1799; hon discharged 15 June 1800; lt 2 arts and engrs 16 Feb 1801; arts 1 Apr 1802; capt 30 June 1807; tr to corps art 12 March 1814; hon dischd 15 June 1815; reinstd in corps art 2 Dec 1815; bvt maj 30 June 1817 for 10 yrs fai ser in one grade; died 14 Sep 1819
Thursday, October 16, 1800
Columbian Minerva (Dedham MA)
Vol V, Issue 210, page 2
Death of daughter [see notice]
Children of Moses & Sarah (Hanaford) Swett:
1. Sally Swett/Swete, b. 17 February 1793 in Concord NH; died 1800 [see newspaper notice, “killed by a cart.”
2. Frederick William Swete, b. 14 Dec 1794 Concord NH
3. Mary Eastman Swett b 13 July 1796; m. 27 Oct 1819 in Lynn MA to Nathan Breed; had several children.
4. Benjamin Hanaford Swett b 1798 Concord NH; d. 23 Feb 1868 at Lynn MA; shoemaker; He married Mehitable –. She b. abt 1804 MA; children: Lucy Turner b 31 Aug 1823 Concord NH) Daniel Moses (b 7 Jan 1825 Concord NH), Mary Elizabeth (b 8 June 1826 Concord NH), Sarah Frances (b 4 Dec 1827 Concord NH), Ann Maria (b 16 May 1830 Concord NH), James Edward (b 15 April 1838 Concord NH) [and possibly others]
5. Abraham Swett b 1802 in Concord NH

THOMAS GILMORE [He preached in Boscawen as early as 1802; owned the

Oracle Post, Portsmouth NH, Tuesday February 5, 1805; re: Fourth N.H. Turnpike

Oracle Post, Portsmouth NH, Tuesday February 5, 1805; re: Fourth N.H. Turnpike meeting

tavern as early as 1805, known then as GILMORE’S TAVERN, a stagecoach stop.  The town’s whipping post was located nearby.  In 1803 He was one of those pledging funds hoping to have the ‘new’ NH legislative building built in Boscawen. In Sept of 1804 Timothy Dix placed an ad stating he was moving to Portsmouth and included in his sales offerings was the “stand now occupied as a tavern by Mr. Thomas Gilmore (see). In February of 1805 an annual meeting was held at Gilmore’s Tavern to discuss the Fourth N.H. Turnpike. On 8 August 1809 Thomas Gilmore was appointed Deputy Sheriff, residing Boscawen].
History of Boscawen & Webster (by Coffin), page 170
Whipping was one of the punishments prescribed by law for minor offenses. The public whipping-post stood near Gilmore’s tavern (the house now occupied by Nathaniel Webster), a few rods north of the same. The only instance of a public whipping of an offender occurred in 1809.
1802 Thomas Gilmore signed contract with Rev. Samuel Wood for payment to preach in town [Boscawen Religious Society, page 230, History of Boscawen & Webster NH]

Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH) Oct 10, 1804 Timothy Dix ad to sell property and settle debts as moving from Boscawen NH to Portsmouth NH.

Courier of New Hampshire (Concord NH) Oct 10, 1804 Timothy Dix ad to sell property and settle debts as moving from Boscawen NH to Portsmouth NH.

Farmer’s Cabinet (Amherst) April 23, 1805 page 3
The public are hereby informed that a STAGE is erected and will commence running on Tusday, the 16th inst. from Nashua Village in Dunstable N.H. thro’ Concord, N.H. to Boscawen, twice a week, in the following order, viz.–Leaves Mr. Thomas Gilmore’s tavern, in Boscawen, on Monday mornings, at 6 o’clock, will stop and breakfast at Mr. Gale’s tavern, in Concord, will dine and exchange horses at Mr. Gillis’s tavern, in Bedford, at noon, and arrive at esqr. Taylor’s tavern, Nashua village, the same evening,–returning leaves said tavern on Tuesday mornings at 7 o’clock, dine and exchange horses at Mr. Gillis’s in Bedford, and arrive in Boscawen the same evening. The same route will be performed on Fridays and Saturdays.–The price is six cents per mile, with fourteen lbs. baggage.
Thomas Gilmore, son of James & Molly (Wilson/Wyman) Gilmore, b. 28 Feb 1763 in Pelham NH; d. probably before Oct 1814 in Burlington, Chittenden Co. VT; He married 24 Sep 1792 in Merrimack, Hillsborough Co. NH to Tabitha “Tabby” Wilkins, daughter of Daniel & Tabitha (Weston) Wilkins. She was b 28 Oct 1774 in Amherst NH and died 16 Sep 1848 in South Marlow NH. She married 2nd) Mont Vernon NH 30 March 1825 to Deacon John Carleton, son of Deacon Oliver & Amy (Washer) Carleton. He was b. 16 Oct 1762 in Mont Vernon and died 20 Dec 1838. [John Carleton had married for his 1st wife, Judith Weston dau of Daniel & Mary (Hartshorn) Weston, b. 29 March 1763 and d. 25 Nov 1824].
Wednesday, August 4, 1875 — Farmer’s Cabinet (Amherst NH), Vol 74, Issue 4, Page 2
DEATH OF A PROMINENT NATIVE OF AMHERST.–Mr. Thomas Weston Gilmore, one of the most prominent men of his town and country, died at Newport [NH] on Tuesday, the 27th. He was born in Amherst [NH] March 27th, 1794, and was the eldest of the eight children of Thomas and Tabitha (Wilkins) Gilmore. In 1802 the family removed to Boscawen, where the father was an inn keeper and deputy sheriff, and during the war of 1812 was connected with the Commissary Department of the U.S. In 1808 the subject of this sketch, having received but a limited common school education, commenced an apprenticeship in the large store of Andrew Lovejoy, at Sanbornton Square, which he in time became the owner of. He removed to Goshen in 1822, and to Newport in 1826, where he continued in active mercantile business until 1831, when he retired but continued a special partner in several firms. He was afterwards Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas and Superior Court for many years, and succeeded Gov. Metcalf as president of the bank at Newport in 1856; and continued in the same position under the National organizations. He was one of the most upright and successful business men of Sullivan county, his whole career being marked by a rigid integrity and conscientiousness of purpose and action. He was a liberal giver to benevolent objects. His estate, including large distributions in his life time among his heirs, was the largest ever devised in Newport. He left a widow, who was his second wife, and four children. Mr. Gilmore was a frequent visitor in Amherst, Mrs. Sophia Jones, the late widow of Col. Levi Jones being his sister.
Children of Thomas & Tabitha (Wilkins) Gilmore: [possibly 3 more children not listed]
1. Thomas Weston Gilmore, b. 27 March 1794 Amherst NH; d. 27 July 1875 Newport NH [see obituary above.]. He married 18 March 1804 to Hannah Batchelder Lovejoy.
2. Sophia Gilmore, b. 29 January 1796 Amherst NH; d 13 April 1875 in Amherst NH; m. Col. Levi Jones, resided Amherst NH
3. Mehitable Codman Gilmore, m. 30 April 1818 in Manchester NH to Joshua Mitchell. According to the History of Mont Vernon NH, he was a mechanic and they moved to Woodstock VT where they had children: Sarah Mehitable Mitchell, b. 24 Jan 1819, and Thomas Gilmore Mitchell, b 19 nov 1820, grad Dartmouth College, a congregational clergyman in Maine
4. Daniel Gilmore, b. 1801 Sanbornton, Belknap Co. NH; d. 13 June 1849 NY; buried Centre Cemetery, Sanbornton NH; he married 25 Oct 1827 to Hannah Taylor
5. Mary A. Gilmore, b. 21 July 1805 in Mont Vernon NH, and died 17 Nov 1878 in Griggsville, IL; m. 17 Oct 1843 to Reuben Hatch.

Moses Gill  was the next owner of the building. A 1995 newspaper article states: “The property remained in the Carter family for 20 years after his death in 1808 and eventually was sold in 1830 by Moses Gill, to Nathaniel Webster, whose father was a first cousin of Daniel Webster. ” In 1828 Moses Gill owned the tavern sold it in 1830 to Nathaniel Webster. He was probably related to the original Carter family owners (one of Winthrop Carter’s daughters married a Gill).
Moses-3 Gill (Bradbury-2, William-1) m. Harriet Putney, 18 Dec 1825, and settled on the Plain, where their son now lives; for a time he was superintendent of the city farm in Concord, where he and his wife gained many friends, and their labors in caring for the poor were duly appreciated.  His Son Hamilton P. Gill, b. 26 Oct 1826; m. Lydia A. Davis of Concord 12 Sep 1850; resides on the homestead inherited from his father.[History of Boscawen NH says, “Benjamin Eastman [son of Joseph] b 9 Sep 1730; lived where Hamilton P. Gill now lives.]

NATHANIEL G. WEBSTER [purchased the tavern in 1812. In addition to being a distant cousin to Daniel Webster (statesman), Nathaniel’s brother Ebenezer had married Daniel Webster’s sister Sarah; also Daniel’s first attorney office was located across the street, so he was a frequent visitor to the tavern.]

An 1896 article in the New York Times describes the homestead” “When Webster Visted Boscawen, Anecdotes a Relative Tells of the Great Statesman.”  Here Daniel and Ezekiel Webster made frequent visits. The house was the second frame dwelling house built in Boscawen. It was erected a short time prior to 1775 by Winthrop Carter, who died in 1808. Here Mr. Carter kept a tavern. A young son of Mr. Carter, about sixteen years of age, went to Bennington with Gen. Stark…. The mansion is on the old stage road from Concord to Haverhill and Hanover. It was purchased in 1812 by Nathaniel Webster, father of Nathaniel S. Webster, the present owner.”

 Nathaniel G. Webster, son William & Ruth (Greeley) Webster, and grandson of Ebenezer & Susanna (Batchelder) Webster,  b 15 Feb 1781 Salisbury NH, died 8 Aug 1828 Boscawen NH; m. 1 Nov 1815 at Salisbury NH to Betsey Sawyer, dau of Moses & Ann (Fitz) Sawyer of Salisbury. She was b. 8 Aug 1828 and died 20 October 1880 at Palmyra NY.
Children of Nathaniel & Betsey (Sawyer) Webster:
1. Betsey Sawyer Webster b 11 Feb 1817 Boscawen NH, d. 8 Sep 1825 Boscawen NH
2. +Nathaniel Sawyer Webster, b. 11 May 1818; m. Lucy Ann Lord, 2 July 1846; representative in 1876 and 1877. Two children–Julia A. and Charles I.
3. William Webster, b. 20 Feb 1821; d. 8 Aug 1826
4. Ann Ruth Webster, b. 26 Nov 1823 Boscawen NH; m. Rev. Horace Eaton, D.D., Palymra N.Y. Three children.

NATHANIEL SAWYER WEBSTER [next owner of the home as described in the 1899 story above in the New York Times.]
Nathaniel Sawyer Webster
, b. May 11, 1818 in Boscawen NH, d. 7 Dec 1898 in Boscawen NH.  [tombstone] He married June 1846 in Epsom NH to Lucy Ann Lord, dau of Edward Dearborn & Betsey (Osgood) Lord. She was b. 28 February 1821 in Epsom, Rockingham Co. NH, d. Nov 17, 1901.
1860 US Census > NH > Merrimack > Boscawen
Nathaniel S. Webster 42 M Farmer 2500 1500 NH
Lucy A. Webster 37 F NH
Julia A. Webster 7 F NH
Charles I. Webster 4 M NH
Betsy Webster 67 F NH
1870 US Census > NH > Merrimack > Boscawen
Nathan’l S. Webster 52 M W Farmer 6500/4000 NH
Webster, Lucy A. 48 F W Keeping House NH
Webster, Julia A. 17 F W at school NH
Webster, Charles I. 14 M W NH
1880 US Census > NH > Merrimack > Boscawen
Webster, Nathaniel S W M 62 Farmer
Webster, Lucy A. W F 59 wife keeping House
Webster, Charles I W M 24 son Teacher
Lord, Betsey W F 84 mother in law, no occupation
1900 US Census > NH > Merrimack > Boscawen
Webster Lucy Head W F Oct 1823 76 widow 1 ch 1 living NH MA MA
Children of Nathaniel S. & Lucy A. (Lord) Webster:
1. +Julia Appleton Webster, b April 1853 NH; she married Clarence Franklin Carroll. He b. 1 Apr 1851 in Grafton NH and d. 14 June 1912 in Warner NH.
2. Charles I. Webster, b. abt 1856 NH; He married Abbie Dodd, dau of Ira & Mabel E. (?) Dodd. Children: Alice, Grace, Thornton J., Lucille, Charles J.; in 1920 & 1920 living in East Orange NJ an educator and principal in public schools.  In 1892 when the Library was dedicated, “Charles I. Webster, the son of a noble old Boscawen family, who has made a name for himself as an educator in New Jersey, joined heartily in the felicities of the day and the high tributes to the generous donors.” [2nd history of Boscawen NH]

CLARENCE F. & JULIA A. (WEBSTER) CARROLL [The tavern and property remained in the Webster family until at least the late 1800s, through Julia A. Webster who married Clarence F. Carroll. Julia’s funeral was held from this homestead.] Julia Appleton Webster, daughter of Nathaniel S. & Lucy A. (Lord) Webster [see above] born April 1853 Boscawen, NH, probably named after the daughter of Daniel Webster, statesman; died age 82 on 11 May 1935 in Reading MA. She is buried in Plains Cemetery in Boscawen NH. Julia married 20 May 1872 in Boston MA to Clarence Franklin Carroll, son of Alonzo & Mercy (Hale) Carroll. He b. 1 Apr 1851 in Enfield, Grafton NH,  and d. 14 June 1912 in Warner NH. He was an educator per his daughter’s marriage cert. In 1900 Superintendent of Schools in Worcester MA.
1900 US Census > Massachusetts > Worcester > Worcester
Clarence F. Carroll M 49 NH Apr 1851 49 married 28 yrs NH NH NH Superintendent of Schools
Julia W. Carroll F 47 NH April 1853 47 married 28 yrs 4 ch 4 living NH NH NH
Stella J. Carroll F 26 NH dau W F Aug 1874 25 single NH
Harry C. Carroll M 20 CT Dec 1880 19 single CT
Carl H. Carroll M 18 CT Dec 1882 17 signel CT
Libbie Martin F 26 Servant March 1874 single —
Worcester Daily Spy, Worcester MA, August 18, 1903, page 5
Mr. and Mrs. Clarence F. Carroll of Rochester, NY, announce the engagement of their daughter, Stella Webster, to Lawrence P. Tolman of Kansas City, Mo.
Boston Herald, May 12, 1935. OBITUARY: Mrs. Julia Carroll. Reading Woman Was Oldest Relative of Daniel Webster.  READING.  May 11–Mrs. Julia Carroll, believed to be the oldest relative of Daniel Webster, died today at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Lawrence P. Tolman, at 21 Scotland road, Reading. She was 82, the widow of Clarence F. Carroll, educator and former superintendent of schools at Worcester, Marblehead and Rochester NY.  She was born at Boscawen NH the daughter of Lucy and Nathaniel S. Webster. Her great-grandfather was an uncle of Daniel Webster.  She is survived by two daughters, Mrs. Tolman with whom she made her home for the past year, and Mrs. Almon G. Harris of Penacook NH, and two sons, Carl H. Carroll of Arlington and Harry C. Carroll of Chicago, and 13 grandchildren.  Funeral Services will be held Tuesday at 2 pm in the homestead at Boscawen.
Children of Clarence F. & Julia A. (Webster) Carroll:
1. Stella Webster Carroll, b. 3 Aug 1874 in Boscawen NH; In 1899 a writer, author and co-author of several books including, “Boys and Girls of the Philippines, 1899.” She was a teacher in the North Adams MA school system.  She married Lawrence Powers Tolman, son of Eugene & Mary F. (Powers) Tolman on 5 April 1904 in Rochester NY where she was living [brief newpaper notice]. They had 3 children, one died young, and two daughters, including Margaret D. Tolman, b. 19 Jan 1910 in Seattle WA.
2. Margaret Ethel Carroll, b 29 June 1888 Boscawen NH; married 1st) 3 Oct 1912 in Boscawen NH to Almon Greene Harris, son of Ezra Sheldon & Sarah (Green) Harris; had 3 children [see link] ; as a widow she m2) 30 March 1946 in Concord NH to William P. Bair, son of William M. & Rosa (Cook) Bair. Her marriage cert states she was president of Emery Harris Co.
3. Harry Clarence Carroll, b Dec 1880 in CT; m. Valla Hope Wycoff; children Hope (b 1913) and 2 others
4. Carl Herman Carroll, b Dec 1882 in NH; m. 7 May 1908 in VT to Lena N. Cushman; had 3 children. In 1908 at marriage living in Burlington VT, in lumber business

CLARA PIERCE owned the building from 1939-1946.  She lost a son in the 2nd World War.  She sold the building to William Van Arsdale.

[Editor’s Note, DOROTHY L. BROWN [Owner of  a different “Kettle & Crane” Inn in Boscawen from about  1922-1942.  According to local authority, Henrietta Kenney that building was down the street (from the Carter Estate) where Dunkin’ Donuts now sets.  That house was moved to New London and later burned.  It had been built by Robie Morrill for his son Joseph Morril.  First marriage in 1790 to Judith Atkinson, 2nd marriage to Lydia Jacques Pearson, 1804, BHS 1983 History page 185.

.WILLIAM K. & PAULINE G. VAN ARSDALE [Lived on the property circa 1943-1947, Van Asrdalen Farm, owned it for a short time.]
1939 NH Directory > FRANKLIN
Granite State Inn Frank J.Van Arsdale Prop tourist home 254 S. Main
1947 NH City Directory Concord > S
VAN ARSDALE, WILLIAM K. (Pauline G.) prop Asrdalen Farm h King

FLORENCE “FODIE” BURLINGHAM [Resided in house circa 1947; from 1939-1946 she ran a boarding house in the Pembroke/Concord area].  Rented, not owned the building. It was known as the Old Homestead Inn and Tea Room during her stay there.
Florence MacNair
, dau of William & Marion (Goodwin) MacNair, b abt 1892 in Massachusetts; stenographer; married 22 March 1915 in Los Angeles California to Ralph P. Burlingham, son of J. Burlingham & Helen C. Cook.  They divorced.
1939 Concord City Directory:
Burlingham Margt boarding and rooms Pembroke RD4 Concord h do
1941 Concord City Directory:
under Boarding and Rooms: Burlingham Florence Mrs. Pembroke, RD4 Concord
1941 Concord City Directory:
Burlingham Gordon E r Mrs. F. Burlington [sic]
Burlingham Mrs. boarding and rooms; Pembroke RD4 Concord h do
1947 Concord City Directory: Burlingham, Florence Mrs. h King

.FRANKLIN E. SCOTTY [Owner 1948 and before 1952.  He removed to Rye in 1952 per a newspaper article below]
Franklin E. Scotty, son of Charles E. Scotty, b. 8 Oct 1897 and d. 3 Oct 1970 in Rye NH
He m. 18 Dec 1929 in Exeter NH to Edith G. Macbrine, dau of John Wilmot & Julia (Scallen) Macbrine.
In 1940 he and wife was living in Belmont, Middlesex Co. MA
1944 living in Belmont MA [city directory]
1958 Exeter NH
PORTSMOUTH HERALD, Monday Oct 5, 1970
RYE–Franklin Earl Scotty, 72, of 430 Central Road, Rye, died at Portsmouth Hospital, Saturday. He was born in Enid, Okla, Oct 8, 1897, son of the late Charles and Daisy Scott, and resided in Boscawen before coming to Rye in 1952. During World War II he served as a glider pilot in the USAF and was one of the organizers of Seacoast VFW Post of Rye in which he was service officer for several years. He is survived by his widow Mrs. Edith (MacBrine) Scotty; three nieces and one nephew.

HAROLD G. & IRENE VITAGLIANO [Owners of “Kettle and Crane Inn” from at least 1956-1964 when there was a fire, and possibly later. Apparently they closed the inn during the winter months.] According to Henrietta Kenney, they rebuilt the center of the house and rebuilt the paneling in 1952 after the fire (when the furnace ran out of water).
Harold Guy Vitagliano, son of Antonio & Anna M. (Doyen) Vitagliano was b 24 Apr 1907 in Concord NH, and died 14 September 1995 in Concord NH;  He married 7 Dec 1927 in Concord NH to Irene Katherine Saidel, daughter of Isaac & Grace (Tucker) Saidel. One of their children, H. Douglas Vitagliano, helped design space telescopes.
1953 NH Directory > Concord & Penacook
Kettle & Crane, Harold Vitagliano prop dining room and guest house D W Highway
October 23, 1956 Boston Herald, page 19
“I was happy to hear from Harold and Irene Vitagliano, Kettle and Crane Inn, Boscawen, N.H. that when they polled their guests as to pie preferences it went: apple, blueberry, rhubarb, chocolate cream and custard. That is where custard ought to be.”
1957 The Kettle and Crane Inn
Harold G. and Irene S. Vitagliano, Hosts
Table d’Hote Dinners
Weddings and Special Parties
Guest Rooms
Liquor License
8 Miles north of Concord
Daniel Webster Highway, Rtes 3 and 4, Boscawen NH
December 19, 1961 Boston Herald, page 20
Mrs. Irene Vitagliano, of the Kettle and Crane Inn, Boscawen N.H. is looking for a recipe for Boiled Cider Applesauce Fried Pies.
February 15, 1964 See newspaper ad about Closed Inn Burning.

1970′-1990s: CONTINUES TO BE CALLED “Kettle and Crane” and used as an inn.
Per Henrietta Kenney: James and Janet Moore owned the building sold some of the land to Black Forest nursery

1971: NH Manual, called Kettle and Crane (hotel)
1975: Kettle & Crane in Yankee Magazine’s Guide to New England
The NH State Department web site shows that the “Kettle and Crane” as a business dissolved 7/3 1994

A 1995 newspaper article speaks of this house: “The Kettle and Crane reflects the Georgian style of architecture prevalent in 18th century New Hampshire with the two-story structure capped by a hipped roof and featuring a massive center chimney with five fireplaces, as well as wide pine floors on the second floor.  One unique feature of the Kettle and Crane are the clapboards, wider at the top than at the bottom of the building in order to fool the eye into seeing a symmetry and providing greater protection from the elements at the lower level.

Photograph of the sign for the Winthrop Carter House in Boscawen NH, courtesy of Loren Magee. Used with permission.

Photograph of the sign for the Winthrop Carter House in Boscawen NH, courtesy of Loren Magee. Used with permission.

2014: Owned by Robert W. Graham and Joy N. Steinberg, who offered it for sale.   “Beautiful Georgian Colonial home with 5 plus bedrooms, 2 full and 2 half bathrooms, large dining/living areas and a screened-in porch. With over 4000 square feet of bright, sunny living space this home has perfect in-law potential. This property is currently residential but also zoned as commercial with great traffic patterns so bring your B & B, restaurant or home business ideas. Big kitchen offers 3 sinks, refrigerator…”

2015-TodayIt was purchased in December 2014 by Colm and Katy Brophy, who have renovated the home.  In September 2015 they have opened it as a “event venue” for weddings, cocktail or tented reception location, now known (more appropriately) as the “Winthrop Carter House.”  [They also own the Long Look Farm in Sanbornton NH].

Photograph of the Winthrop Carter House, opened in September of 2015. Formerly the Kettle and Crane. Photograph courtesy of Loren Magee. Used with permission.

Photograph of the Winthrop Carter House, opened in September of 2015. Formerly the Kettle and Crane. Photograph courtesy of Loren Magee. Used with permission.

See Winthrop Carter House on FaceBook | See on “Home Away” |


The home has felt the footsteps of many families, from patriots of the American Revolution, to second generation immigrants.  It has all the bells and whistles of an updated home, and yet retains the sense of stepping back in time when you enter it.  This seems like the perfect fit for a family wanting to live in a lovely, small town in a historic building.

ENDNOTE: I am deeply grateful to Henrietta Kenney of Boscawen NH, without whose assistance I would not have been able to complete this story.  Her knowledge and insight into the people and places of Boscawen is simply amazing.  Thank you Mrs. Kenney!

[Story originally written in August of 2014, updated December 2015].

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2 Responses to Boscawen New Hampshire: From Carter’s Tavern to The Kettle & Crane

  1. Pingback: Salisbury New Hampshire Lawyer, Orator, Statesman: Daniel Webster (1782-1852) | Cow Hampshire

  2. Lei Spencer says:

    My family lived in Boscawen NH from 1959-1964. I remember the fire that damaged The Kettle & Crane during that time. I helped the owner haul damaged wood & debris away from the structure as a young boy. I think that was either 1961 or 1962. I remember several important possessions that were hauled outside, specifically a burned record player that was charred, but still operable. As the owner and others worked cleaning up the debris they were treated to the music from the owner’s record collection….

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