Gazetteer of the State of Maine, 1882 page 159
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Gazetteer of the State of Maine With Numerous Illustrations, by Geo. J. Varney

BOSTON: PUBLISHED BY B. B. RUSSELL, 57 CORNHILL. 1882. Public domain image from


1638 a ship of 300 tons was sent here laden with wine, and the same
year Mr. Trelawney employed 60 men in the fisheries. In the
following year, John Winter, the agent of Trelawney, sent to England,
in the bark Richmond, 6,000 pipe-staves. After the death of
Winter, about 1648, its business declined, and at the breaking out of
the first Indian wrar came entirely to an end. The island contains
about 200 acres, and now constitutes a single farm. In 1637,
by the aid of the proprietors, Rev. Richard Gibson, an Episcopal
minister, was settled on the island, and the necessary appurtenances of
worship in the English form were provided. Mr. Gibson removed to
Portsmouth in 1640, and in 1642 he returned to England. Many years
ago an earthern pot was exhumed upon the Island, and within was
found a number of gold and silver coins of the 17th century, and a
heavy gold signet ring, richly chased, and marked by two initials letters.
This ring has given the title to an historical novel by Dr. llsley, the
chief action of which is placed upon this Island.

The next residents within the limits of Cape Elizabeth were Richard
Tucker and John Cleeves, who located upon Spurwink River in 1630,
carrying on together the business of planting, fishing and trading.
Two years later they wTere driven off by the agent of Sir Alexander
Rigby, who had become the owner of the Plough, or Lygonia Patent,
covering all this section of the coast. They removed to Casco Neck,
where in 1632, they built the first house within the limits of Portland.
Gibson’s successor in bis religious charge was Rev. Robert Jordan, who
married Winter’s daughter and succeeded to his estate. In administer-
ing upon this, for money due Winter on account of services rendered
Trelawney, Jordan obtained an order from the Lygonian government
to seize upon all the estate of the latter, and in this manner he acquired
a title to a large tract of land, including Cape Elizabeth, which has
never been shaken. The first settlers of Porpooduck (that part of
Cape Elizabeth which lies upon Fore River), whoever they may have
been, were driven off in the first Indian war, in 1675. The first re-
settlement appears to have been in 1699 by a few families only. When
the French and Indians under Beaubarin were foiled in their attempt
upon the fort in Scarborough, they turned to Spurwink and Porpooduck.
At the former place, inhabited principally by the Messrs. Jordan and
their families, 22 persons were killed or taken captive. At
the latter place were 9 families unprotected by any fortification,
and at the time of attack not a man was at home; and the savages
here slaughtered 25, and carried away 8 persons. It is said that
the crew of a visiting vessel first discovered these corpses, burying
all in one vault at each place. The settlement upon Porpooduck
Point commenced forty-four years prior King Philips’ war (1775).
Among them were several families by the name of Wallace. After its
destruction in the third Indian war (1703), there seems to have been
no settlement until 1719 or 1720. In 1734 a church was formed, and
the Rev. Benj. Allen settled as minister ; and in 1752 the inhabitants
were formed into a parish. Cape Elizabeth was incorporated as a town
in 1765, but only with “District ” privileges, which did not allow of a
representation entirely its own in the legislature. The town, therefore,
joined with Falmouth in the choice of representatives until 1776. It
was represented in that year for the first time, the member being
James Leach.


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