Milton Lumberman Frederick B. Roberts (1863-1943)

By Muriel Bristol | March 28, 2021

Frederick Belknap “Fred” Roberts was born in Milton, March 25, 1863, son of Ira and Caroline C. (Foss) Roberts. (Ira Roberts died of heart disease in Middleton, NH, June 2, 1875, aged sixty-four years. He was a carpenter).

Caroline C. Roberts, keeping house, aged fifty-six years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. Her household included her children, Fred B. Roberts, at school, aged seventeen years (b. NH), and Sadie B. Roberts, at school, aged eleven years (b. NH).

REAL ESTATE TRANSFERS. … S.E. Twombly to F.B. Roberts, Milton. E.E. Roberts to F.B. Roberts, Milton. Joseph Plumer to F.B. Roberts, Milton (Farmington News, February 8, 1889).

MILTON. At the republican caucus Saturday afternoon the following delegates were chosen to the different conventions: State – E.W. Fox and Frank Horner. Congressional – R.M. Kimball and C.D. Fox. Senatorial – Luther Hayes and B.B. Plummer. Councillor – Chas. A. Jones and S.W. Wallingford. County – Fred B. Roberts and C.W. Gross. Town Committee – Chas. H. Looney, president; B.B. Plummer, secretary; Luther Hayes, C.A. Jones, J.H. Avery, W.H.H. Pinkham, Fred B. Roberts, S.W. Wallingford, Charles D. Fox and Charles W. Gross (Farmington News, 1892).

The partnership of Avery, Jones & Roberts appeared in the Milton business directory of 1898, as builders, and as manufacturers of  lumber, shingles, and clapboards. Fred B. Roberts evidently supplied the lumber, Harry L. Avery appears to have kept the store front. (H.L. Avery appeared also in the directory as town clerk, and as one of fifteen Milton justices-of-the-peace). Charles D. Jones‘ role is less clear, although he was also a storekeeper, being specifically a pharmacist, as well as being a medical doctor.

Fred B. Roberts, a contractor & builder, aged thirty-seven years (b. NH), headed a Milton (“Milton Village”) household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his sister, Sadie B. Roberts, aged thirty-one years (b. NH), his brother-in-law, Freeman D. Pike, a day laborer, aged fifty-eight years (b. NH), his sister (Pike’s wife of forty years), Sophia [(Roberts)] Pike, aged fifty-seven years (b. NH), his niece, Addie C. Pike, at school, aged sixteen years (b. NH), his nephew, Lewis F. Pike, at school, aged thirteen years (b. NH), and his boarder, Richard Colbath, a telegrapher, aged twenty-two years (b. NH). Freeman D. Pike owned their house, free-and clear. Sophia [(Roberts)] Pike was the mother of four children, of whom two were still living.

Avery-Jones-Roberts - 1900Avery, Jones & Roberts appeared in the Milton business directory of 1901, 1904, 1905-06, and 1909, as builders, and as manufacturers of  lumber, shingles, and clapboards. H.L. Avery appeared also as town clerk, and as a Milton justice-of-the-peace.

The NH General Court authorized incorporation of the Milton Water Works Company, March 21, 1901, with initial board members Malcom A.H. Hart, Charles H. Looney, S. Lyman Hayes, Charles D. Jones, Fred B. Roberts, Harry Avery, George E. Wentworth, Joseph H. Avery, Ira W. Jones, Arthur W. Dudley, Everett F. Fox, Henry F. Townsend, Freeman H. Lowd, William T. Wallace, Frank G. Horne, Charles A. Jones, and Nathaniel G. Pinkham. It established itself July 19, 1899, with Harry L. Avery as its treasurer (NH Secretary of State, 1901).  

Madokawanda By-Laws - 1926PERSONAL. Fred B. Roberts is spending his vacation at the Roberts farm on the Rochester road (Farmington News, July 26, 1901).

MILTON. At the last meeting of Madokawanda Tribe, No. 21, I.O.R.M., the following officers were elected for the ensuing year: Sachem, H.F. Finnegan; prophet, James Leighton; senior sagamore, Harry Perkins; junior sagamore, G. Frank Davis; C. of W., Fred B. Roberts; K. of W., Fred S. Hartford; C. of R., Edwin L. Leighton; trustee for three years, Fred B. Roberts (Farmington News, January 8, 1904).

Outgoing NH Governor Nahum J. Batchelder swore in Fred B. Roberts and 316 others as NH State Representatives, January 4, 1905. Roberts was Milton’s representative.

Partner Charles D. Jones died of typhoid fever in Milton, July 2, 1908, aged forty-four years, nine months, and ten days. The firm of Avery, Jones & Roberts continued as Avery & Roberts.

AJR Box MaterialFreman D. Pike, aged sixty-eight years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Thirteenth (1910) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of forty-nine years), Sopha N. Pike, aged sixty-seven years (b. NH), and his boarders, Fred B. Roberts, aged forty-nine years (b. NH), and Susan Roberts, aged forty-one years (b. NH). Sophia Pike was the mother of two children, of whom two were still living.

Avery & Roberts appeared in the Milton business directory of 1912, and 1917, as builders, and as manufacturers of  lumber, shingles, and clapboards. H.L. Avery appeared also as town clerk, and as a Milton justice-of-the-peace.

Fred P. Jones, Union P.O. (Telephone 41-15) was State Forest Fire Warden for Milton in 1911-12, 1913-14, and 1915-16. (Jones was the father of theatrical designer Robert E. Jones). Jones’ Forest Fire Deputies were Fred B. Roberts, Milton P.O. (Telephone 23-2); H.R. Jewett, Sanbornville P.O. (Telephone 9-4); Isaac L. Lord, Union P.O. (Telephone 6-21); and F. Leroy Tripp, Farmington P.O. (Telephone 42-15) (NH Forestry Commission, 1912; NH Forestry Commission, 1914; NH Forestry Commission, 1916).

LOCAL. Two cases from Milton were brought before Judge A.H. Wiggin in the local district court on Wednesday of this week: That of State vs. Joseph D. Willey, brought by High Sheriff Edward S. Young on a charge of “keeping for sale,” in which the respondent entered a plea of guilty and the court imposed the minimum fine and jail sentence. Sentence was suspended upon payment of costs. The other case, that of State vs. Robert McIntosh, brought by Fred B. Roberts, wherein the respondent was charged with using derisive language toward the complainant, the respondent plead guilty and was fined five dollars and costs (Farmington News, December 15, 1916).

(McIntosh’s wife would divorce him in the following year. She alleged habitual drunkenness over a period of three years (One must recall always that allegations by themselves are simply that, allegations)).

Avery-Roberts - 1917Fred B. Roberts married in Milton, October 10, 1917, Mary Jane ((Raynor) Burke) Spaulding, he of Milton, and she of Worcester, MA. He was a lumber dealer, aged fifty-four years, and she was a housekeeper, aged forty-one years. Rev. A.T. Everett performed the ceremony. She was born on Prince Edward Island, Canada, circa 1875, daughter of John W. and Mary Ann Raynor. (Mary J. Raynor married (1st) in Milton, June 28, 1899, William E. Burke, both of Milton. Mary J. (Rayner) Burke married (2nd) in Worcester, MA, September 22, 1903, Algernon S. Spaulding (1847-1915), both of Worcester).

Fred B. Roberts, a lumberman (owner), aged fifty-five years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Fourteenth (1920) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Mary J. Roberts, aged forty-three years (b. Canada). Fred B. Roberts owned their farm on Upper Main Street in Milton Village (near its intersection with the Teneriffe Mountain Road). Mary J. Roberts was a naturalized citizen, having immigrated into the U.S. in 1883.

REPUBLICANS FILE FOR NEW HAMPSHIRE PRIMARIES. CONCORD, N H., July 23 – All the candidates for the September primaries, who filed with the Secretary of State today, were Republicans. The list included John H. Garland of Conway, State Senator; James H. Joyce of Somersworth, Fred B. Roberts of Milton, County Commissioners; Ralph W. Davis of Derry. Henry H. Amsden of Concord, Adelbert M. Nichols of Claremont, John E. Dorr of Jefferson, William C. Goss of Henniker, Representatives (Boston Globe, July 24, 1920).

ROCHESTER MAN HIT BY TREE SUES FOR $5,000. Rochester, Aug. 31 – Claiming he received injuries when a tree on the property of Avery [&] Roberts, lumber dealers at Milton, fell on him, Feb 28, 1924, that made it necessary for him to resign as chief of police and deputy sheriff at that place. Arthur F. Remick has brought suit against the firm for $5000 (Portsmouth Herald, August 31, 1925).

Fred B. Roberts, a lumberman (own mill), aged sixty-seven years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Fifteenth (1930) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Mary J. Roberts, aged fifty-two years (b. Canada). Mary J. Roberts was a naturalized citizen, having immigrated into the U.S. in 1894. Fred B. Roberts owned their house on North Main Street, which was valued at $1,800. They had a radio set.

Partner Henry L. Avery died of a sudden cerebral hemorrhage in Milton, September 30, 1936, aged seventy-two years, eight months, and two days.

Here and There. The Milton town pound, one of the few remaining in New Hampshire, which was removed and rebuilt two years ago to permit a change in the location of the highway, has just been marked with a commemorative tablet by Fred B. Roberts, veteran town meeting moderator, and Ira W. Jones. In the early days pounds were common in New England for the confinement of cows and other domestic animals caught running at large. Early records of the town show that in 1803, when Gilman Jewett was town clerk, it was voted that the “town build a pound as near the center of the town as convenient.” The following year the pound was built, according to the records, “on land westerly opposite the town house, by Jonathan Pinkham.” The pound is circular and 30 feet in internal diameter. The walls are of field stone, about six feet high. A wooden gate adorns the front (Portsmouth Herald, July 3, 1939).

Milton Town Pound - 1806Fred B. Roberts, a lumberman (owner), aged seventy-seven years (b. NH), headed a Milton household at the time of the Sixteenth (1940) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Mary J. Roberts, aged sixty-three years (b. Canada). Fred B. Roberts owned their house in the Milton community, which was valued at $1,800.

Fred B. Roberts died of a cerebral hemorrhage on Main Street in Milton, October 31, 1943, aged eighty years, seven months, and six days.

IN MEMORIAM. Fred B. Roberts. Fred B. Roberts, 81, well known Milton businessman and a lifelong resident of that community, died last Sunday, following a sudden illness. Mr. Roberts was a prominent figure in Milton civic affairs for many years. He was the last surviving member of the firm of Avery, Jones and Roberts. Besides operating a women’s furnishings store he was also a lumber dealer. Active in politics, he served the town in the legislature for three terms, held several town offices and was moderator of the town for over twenty years. He was a member of the Masonic lodge in Union and Order of Red Men in Milton. Funeral services were held at Milton Wednesday afternoon. Burial was in Farmington cemetery (Farmington News, November 5, 1943).

CHARTER DRAPED AT OES MEETING. At the Eastern Star meeting Tuesday night, presided over by Worthy Matron Virginia Ham, the charter was draped for Mrs. Mary Roberts of Milton and the altar was draped for Past Grand Patron Howard K. Streeter and Past Grand Matron Mrs. Florence M. Lord, both of Manchester, who passed away recently. This was the last meeting until September. Plans were made to attend the service at Milton Community Church with the Masonic Lodge on June 19 (Farmington News, June 16, 1960).


References:

Find a Grave. (2020, August 18). Harry L. Avery. Retrieved from www.findagrave.com/memorial/214557733/harry-l-avery

Kelleher Auctions. (2020). Nineteenth Century U.S. Patent Envelopes [Page 7]. Retrieved from www.kelleherauctions.com/lot_pdfs/3003/712482.pdf

NH Forestry Commission. (1912). Biennial Report of the Forestry Commission for the Two Fiscal Years Ending 1911-12. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=-A48AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA130

NH Forestry Commission. (1914). Biennial Report of the Forestry Commission for the Two Fiscal Years Ending 1913-14. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=SOhDAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA107

NH Forestry Commission. (1916). Biennial Report of the Forestry Commission for the Two Fiscal Years Ending 1915-16. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=oMArAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA170

NH Secretary of State. (1901). Laws of the State of New Hampshire. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=vJxGAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA781

Worthpoint. (2021). 1926 By-Laws for Madokawanda Tribe N0. 21 Improved Order of Red Men – Milton, NH. Retrieved from www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/1926-laws-madokawanda-tribe-21-1863377734

Author: Muriel Bristol

"Lady drinking tea"

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