Archive for the 'Obituary' Category

George Dunbar Dies at Home in Westfield

[Adapted from the Berkshire Eagle, 19 February 1943.]

Local Native Kept Family Diary for 62 Years

Westfield.—George Clinton Dunbar, 75, a native of Pittsfield and for 18 years superintendent of the Westfield Power Company and formerly a stationary engineer with the American Writing Paper Company of Holyoke, died yesterday afternoon at this home, 12 State Street. At one time Mr. Dunbar was employed by the Pittsfield Electric Company.

Mr. Dunbar was frequently in the news — for one reason, because he had kept a family diary for about 62 years. He started making his chronicles Jan. 1, 1881. At the request of his family, he started typing duplicate copies of the diary in 1932. In the diary he had a complete section on the blizzard of 1888 and another on World War I.

Valentine Legend

On St. Valentine’s Day, 1941. the late Mrs. William B. Foote of 41 Reed Street received through the mail from Westfield, a valentine whose first trip was started in 1877 by Mr. Dunbar.

In 1876, Mrs. Foote — she was then Mary L. Peirson — had a classmate in the Elizabeth Street School. His name was George C. Dunbar. On St. Valentine’s Day of the following year, Mary Peirson sent to George Dunbar a little pink and white valentine, embossed in lace design, with an oval of colored flowers in the center, framing the words, “I Love Thee Dearly.”

It was Mr. Dunbar’s first real valentine, and he treasured it for 24 years. In 1901, he mailed it back to its sender. Mrs. Foote kept it for 28 years, and in 1929 seh again sent it to Mr. Dunbar, suggesting that since both of them valued it, each should retain it for a year, sending it back to the other on St. Valentine’s Day.

And so in 1941, from Westfield, where Mr. Dunbar was living, the valentine made its 15th trip in 64 years.

Mr. Dunbar was the son of the late George Samuel and Anna H. Dunbar. He lived in Westfield 40 years. He was a member of the Second Congregational Church and the men’s club of that church. He had been retired four years.

The survivors are a daughter, Miss Alice C. Dunbar of Westfield; two sons, Robert H. Dunbar of Providence, R. I., and Charles O. Dunbar of Arendtsville, Pa.; a sister, Mrs. Alice Dutton of Amesbury and five grandchildren.

The funeral will be held at the Lambson Funeral Home Sunday afternoon at 2.30, with Rev. E. L. Fransworth officiating. Burial will be in Pittsfield Cemetery Monday at 11.


Native of Hinsdale Dies at Age of 101

[Adapted from the Springfield Republican, 12 February 1922.]

Pittsfield, February 11.—Mrs. Irene Cockefair, who would have been 101 years olf on Wednesday died last night at Bloomfield, N.J. She was the widow of Samuel Cockefair. She knitted socks and sweaters for soldiers during the World War. She was born at Hinsdale, spent her early girlhood days in the town of Washington and since her marriage had lived at Bloomfield. She had three daughters who died. Milton T. and Stephen B. Abbott of this city and Fred E. Abbott of Becket are nephews.


William Mahar Dies.

[Adapted from the Springfield Republican, Feb 12, 1922.]

Northampton, February 11.—William Mahar, 66,died at his home on Summer street tonight after a long illness. He leaves his widow, a daughter, Mrs. Herbert Cooper, three sons, Thomas and William of Northampton, a son in the West, and a brother, Michael of Bay State. The funeral will be held Monday morning at 8:15 at the home, followed by services at Blessed Sacrament church. Burial will be in St. May’s cemetery.


Death of a Civil War Veteran

[Adapted from the Springfield Republican, 10 February 1922.]

Great Barrington, February 9.—Philo Blake, 87, died at his home in Sheffield late Wednesday night from an illness due to old age. He was born November 9, 1834, in Litchfield, Ct. On October 25, 1862, he enlisted as a private under Capt. John Edward, Cc M, 3rd regiment, artillery. He was honorably discahrged April 23, 1864, and on the same day, re-enlisted. He served in the Battle of Fredericksburg, Jackson, Campbell’s station and the seiege of Knoxville. He is survived by his widow and two daughters, Mrs. Ida Jennings and Mrs. Stella Rope, both of Bridgeport, Ct., and a son, Philip of this town. The funeral will be held Saturday afternoon at 2 at the home. Burial will be in Elmwood cemetery, Great Barrington.


Octave Merriam Passes Away

[Adapted from the Springfield Republican, 07 February, 1922.]

Old Resident of City Dies Following a Shock.

Pittsfield, Feb 5.—Octave Merriam, 72, died this morning of a shock at the home, 93 Lebanon avenue after an illness of 10 days. He was born in Montreal P.Q., came to Pittsfield with his parents when he was two years old and had made his home in the west part of the city for 70 years. He was a carpenter by trade. Mrs. Merriam died two years ago. Survivors are one daughter, Miss Emma P. Merriam, a trained nurse; seven sons, O. Hentry, Emery C., Joseph G.C., David F., William H., Walter L. and Edward H. Merriam; seven grandchildren, two sisters, Mrs. Katherine Durwin and Mrs. Julia Baker of Pittsfield. The funeral will probably be held Tuesday morning at Notre Dame church with burial in St. Joseph’s cemetery.

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C. T. Holt, Long A Resident Here, Dies

[Adapted from the Springfield Republican, February 3, 1922.]

Was Baptist Minister at One Time and Also Member of Massachusetts House.

Rev. Charles T. Holt, 77, a retired clergyman and former member of the Massachusetts House from the old 6th Hampden District, died yesterday noon at the home of his daughter Mrs. Mabel L. Putney of 153 Fort Pleasant avenue. He had been in failing health for three years, but until recently had preached regularly in Wales.

Mr. Holt was born in Petersham in 1845, the son of Daniel and Sophronia Briggs Holt, descendants of early settlers of that town. Mr. Holt’s grandfather, Thomas Holt, was pastor of the church in Hardwick many years.

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