Milton Mills’ Block Printer John Meikle (1835-c1904)

By Muriel Bristol | July 25, 2021

John Meikle was born in Glasgow, Scotland, circa April 1835, son of James and Jane Miekle.

John Meikle married, circa 1856, Mary McArthur (or McCarthy). She was born in Scotland, circa May 1836.

Daughter Mary J. “Jennie” Meikle was born in Milford, NH, in October 1858.

John Mickel, a machine printer, aged twenty-six years (b. Scotland), headed a Lowell, MA, household at the time of the Eighth (1860) Federal Census. His household included Mary Mickel, aged twenty-two years (b. Scotland), and Jane Mickel, aged two years (b. MA [SIC]). John Mikel had personal estate valued at $80.

Son John Miekle, Jr., was born in Massachusetts, probably Lowell, MA, in October 1860.

John Meikle, a calico printer, aged twenty-six years (b. Glasgow, Scotland), enlisted in the NH Militia in Milford, NH, October 24, 1861, for the term of three years. He was 5′ 7½” tall, with blue eyes, light hair, and a fair complexion. He was mustered into Co. B, of the 8th NH Volunteer Infantry Regiment, in Manchester, NH, December 20, 1861. He was promoted to Corporal, July 16, 1862; wounded at Port Hudson, LA, June 14, 1863; and mustered out at New Orleans, LA, October 24, 1964 (NH Adjutant, 1895).

Son Andrew J. Meikle was born in Milton Mills, May 30, 1866. (At the time of his death, in 1934, it was said in his death certificate that his father had been a dye mixer).

Daughter Jeanette “Nellie” Miekle was born in Milton Mills, circa September 1868.

John Meikle, a printer in woolen mill, aged twenty-eight [thirty-four] years (b. Scotland), headed a Milton household at the time of the Ninth (1870) Federal Census. His household included Mary Meikle, keeping house, aged twenty-eight years (b. Scotland), Jane Meikle, at school, aged eleven years (b. NH), John Meikle, at school, aged nine years (b. MA), Andrew Meikle, aged four years (b. NH), and Jennette Meikle, aged two years (b. NH). John Meikle had real estate valued at $700 and personal estate valued at $300.

John Meikle appeared in the Milton business directory of 1871, as a Milton Mills dyer and table-cover printer (or painter). He appeared in the directories of 1873, 1874, 1875, and 1876, as a Milton Mills table and piano cover manufacturer. (It is unclear whether or not he was involved also with the woolen mills already there).

John Miekle of the I.O.O.F. Miltonia Lodge, No. 52, was inducted into the I.O.O.F. Grand Lodge, in Manchester, NH, October 13, 1875, he being a former Grand Master.

John Meikle would later be said (in 1907-08) to have built the Union Felt mill in Wakefield, NH, some thirty years before, i.e., circa 1876-77.

The woolen mill of Arthur L. Taft at Union was built by John Meikle, about thirty years ago. For twelve or fifteen years, Mr. Meikle manufactured felt and carried on block printing there, until the plant came into the possession of the Star Woolen Co., which remained only a few years (Mitchell-Cony, 1908)

.On March 1st , 1876, an agreement was made between John Meikle of Wakefield and Robert Taylor of Sanford, Maine to form a partnership under the name of “John Meikle and Company” at Union for the purpose of manufacturing and printing felt and woolen goods. The capital amounted to $9000, with Mr. Meikle investing $6000 and Mr. Taylor $3000. The two parties agreed to share the profits and losses in that ratio – Mr. Meikle to be the manager of the manufacturing and printing department and to have exclusive control of the operations. They bought one mill privilege and 242 acres of land from Robert H. Pike. The mill, known [later] as the Star Mill, was a 4 story building in Union (MacRury, 1987).

Meikle’s partner Taylor was a native of Lancashire, England, and had arrived in New York, NY, August 16, 1863. Robert Taylor, a printer in a mill, aged twenty-nine years (b. England), resided in 1870 in the Milton household of Cyrus F. Hart, a farm laborer, aged forty-nine years (b. NH). Taylor was naturalized in Alfred, ME, September 27, 1874.

Meikle’s Union Felt Mill ran into financial difficulties fairly quickly. One might say nowadays that it had a “cash flow” or “liquidity” problem, rather than any basic unsoundness. Meikle did surmount these initial difficulties, but the ensuing legal snarl provided us with a unique snapshot of his mill, suppliers, equipment, materials, and consigners. (More than we have for the Brierley mill, the Townsend mill, or the Miltonia mill).

John Meikle of Wakefield, NH, “assigned” his assets to Nathan Wimpfheimer of Somersworth, NH, May 15, 1877 (Carroll County Probate, 25:196). As they would have said at the time, Meikle’s business had become “embarrassed,” i.e., it could not pay its debts, and Wimpfheimer had been appointed by the court to run the business, or even liquidate it if necessary, in order to settle the outstanding accounts, either in full or to the extent possible. (Original partner Robert Taylor was not mentioned).

Nathan Wimpfheimer appeared in the Great Falls, [Somersworth,] NH, directory of 1878, as working for Wimpfheimer & Co., with his house on High Street (opposite the Great Falls Hotel). Wimpfheimer & Co., a partnership consisting of Nathan Wimpfheimer and H.A. Hayes, were dry goods merchants at 12 Central buildings on High Street. His partner, H. Ansel Hayes, had his house on Pleasant street.

First, Wimpfheimer sought to determine to whom Meikle owed money and in what amounts.

A list of the names and residence of all the creditors of said John Meikle the debtor and the amount and nature of their respective claims.

Chamberlain Bros., Boston, Mass., Account, $691.58; W.S. & F. Cordingley, Boston, Mass., [Account,] $315.84; Davis & Furber, Andover, Mass., [Account,] $3.60; C&W Slade, Boston, Mass. [Account,] $1839,68; Rawitser Bro’s. & Co., New York, [Account,] 760.82; Joseph Plummer, Milton, [Account,] $77.60; A&W Smith, Providence, R.I., [Account,] $2159.72; Holbrook Manfg. Co., New York, [Account,] $70.12; Tibbetts Bro’s., Great Falls, N.H., [Account,] $73.10; Richard Rothwell, Dover, N.H., [Account,] $250.00; John F. Titcomb, [Blank,] Labor, $18.00; Sullivan & Bowman, Newton Lower Falls, Mass., [Account,] $270.90; J.H. Roberts, Boston, Mass., [Account,] $3.47; Townsend & Co., Milton Mills, N.H., [Account,] $84.81; E. Briely & Co., Milton Mills, N.H., [Account,], $34.21; J.J. Duxbury, Dover, N.H., [Account,] $42.34; Wombeck Manf’g Co., Milton Mills, N.H., [Account,] $11.69; Benjamin Edgerly, Wakefield, N.H., [Account,] $34.38; James F. Baxter, Boston, Mass., [Acct.,] $4.15; Hagen & Co., Boston, Mass., [Acct.,] $10.04; W.D. Carpenter, Rochester, N.H. [Acct.,], $9.72; James Jenkins, Wakefield, N.H., [Acct.,] $2o.99; Robert H. Pike, Wakefield, N.H., [Acct.,] $242.98; Eastern Railroad, [Blank,] Freight, $48.39; Eben Osgood, [Blank], Acct., $40.00; Swamscott Co., Newmarket, N.H., [Acct..] $100.00; Amount carried over, $7216.12.

Meikle’s New York creditors appeared in the New York, NY, directory of 1877, as Holbrook Manuf. Co., soap, 62 Church street; and Rawitser & Brother, wool merchants, 92 Warren street.

Meikle’s Providence creditor appeared in the Providence, RI, directory of 1877, as Albert W. Smith, wool and waste merchant, at 13 Exchange place.

Meikle’s Boston creditors appeared in the Boston, MA, directory of 1877, as James T. Baxter, wool broker, at 152 Federal street; Chamberlain Bros. & Co., cotton and wool commission merchants, at 114 Federal street; William S. & Frank Cordingley, dealers in wool, waste, etc., at 490 to 496 Atlantic avenue; Hagar & Co., paper merchants, at 35 Arch street; James H. Roberts & Co., machinery, 118 and 120 Merrimac street; and Slade Dye, wood and dye stuff mills, at New street, near Sumner street, East Boston.

Meikle’s North Andover creditor was the Davis & Furber Machine Co. It specialized in woolen mill machinery.

Meikle’s Dover creditors appeared in the Dover, NH, directory of 1876, as John J. Duxbury, commercial agent manufacturing supply, house at 1 Union street; and Richard Rothwell, machinist, house at Young street, near Water street.

Meikle’s Great Falls creditors appeared in the Great Falls directory of 1876, as Tibbetts & Bro., hardware, iron and steel merchants, at 20 Market street.

Meikle’s Milton creditors were: Ebenezer Osgood, a Milton Mills blacksmith; Joseph Plummer, a Milton farmer; and John F. Titcomb, a Milton Mills carpenter.

Meikle’s Wakefield, NH, creditors were Benjamin Edgerly, a hardware dealer; James H. Junkins, a blacksmith; and Robert H. Pike, a hotel proprietor.

Next, Wimpfheimer took an inventory of the assets belonging to the troubled business. It included Meikle’s assets, including his property, machinery, stock, materials and debts owed to him.

Schedule of all the property embraced in the assignment of John Meikle to Nathan Wimpfheimer, for the benefit of all said Meikle’s creditors, dated May 15, 1877, a copy of which assignment is hereto annexed as follows, viz.

Real Estate. Felting Mill, Mill Privilege, Dam & Land connected therewith, and the fixed machinery in said mill, all situated on Union River, so called, at Union Village in Wakefield in the County of Carroll and State of New Hampshire, being the same mill and property heretofore occupied by the said Meikle estimated to be of the value of Four thousand dollars; $4000. Said property is subject to a mortgage of Robert H. Pike to secure said Meikle’s two notes for the sum of three hundred dollars each, and the interest that may be due thereon. Also subject to a mortgage to the Wolfeborough Savings Bank to secure said Meikle’s note for the sum of Three thousand dollars on which interest is paid to June 2d 1877. Also to a lien of the Swamscott Machine Company on the Steam Boiler in said mill, for the sum of Five hundred dollars and the interest thereon.

Swamscott Machine Boiler
Swamscott Machine Company Corliss Steam Boiler

Personal Property. Movable Machinery. Embossing Machine, $400.00; 3 Embossing Plates, $125 e., $375.00; 3 Hand Presses, $100.00; Printing Blocks, $100; [Total,] $975.00.

Manufactured Stock. 360 yds. Red Felting, .25, $90.00; 1785 yds. Lining Felt, .35, $624.75; 582 do. [Lining Felt], .35, $203.70; (in hands of Robert H. Peirce, Boston); 323 Table Covers, .50, $161.50; 288 do. [Table Covers,] 0.60, $172.80; (in hands of H.B. Claflin & Co., New York); 39 yds. Carpeting, .60, $23.40; 40 yds. Duck, .30, $12.00; [Total,] $1288.15.

HB Claflin Dept Store, New York, NY
Stereoscopic View of H.B. Claflin Department Store, New York, NY

Robert Pierce, in whose hands the felting lay, appeared in the Boston directory of 1877, as a commercial merchant at 17 Kingston street, with his house at Melrose, MA. Horace B. Claflin, in whose hands the table covers lay, appeared in the New York, NY, directory of 1877, as a dry goods merchant at 140 Church street, with his house at 55 Pierpont street, Brooklyn, NY.

Unfinished Goods. 324 yds. Felting, .20, $64.80; 94 do [yds.] Carpet Felt, .45, $42.30; 54 do. [yds.] Felting, .25, $13.50; [Total,] $120.60.

Wool and Shoddy. 560 lbs. Wool, .50, $280.00; 250 do. [lbs.] Blk do. [Wool], .30, $75.00; 148 do. [lbs.], Wool and Shoddy Mix, .25, $37.00; 1095 do. [lbs.] Shoddy, .17, $186.45; 578 do. [lbs.] Black do. [Shoddy], .08, $46.24; 100 do. [lbs.] do. [Black Shoddy], .15, $15.00; 150 do. [lbs.] Card Waste, .05, $7.50; 800 do. [lbs.] Felt Rags, .12, $96.00; 125 do. [lbs.] Grey [Rags], .08,; 80 do. [lbs.] Black Shoddy, .08,; Packing Cases & Wood,,; 5 Cords Soft Wood, 1.50,; 50 Packing Cases, 0.38,; Dyewoods, Dyestuffs, Chemicals &c.,,; 44 galls. Fastic, 4½,; 125 lbs. Grey Rags, .08, $10.00;  80 do. [lbs.] Black Shoddy, .05, $7.50; .08, $6.40.

The crossed-out error would seem to have been a “category error.” Wimpfheimer had begun to include packing materials and dyestuffs under wool and shoddy materials, rather than in their own category.

Packing Cases & Woods. 5 cords Soft Wood, 1.50, $7.50; 50 Packing Cases, .38, $19.00.

Dyewoods, Dyestuffs, Chemicals &c. 44 galls. Fastic, 4½, $1.98; 44 do. [galls.] Extr. Sapan, .15, $6.60; 10 do. [galls.] Archel, .25, $2.50; 12 lbs. Oxalic Acid, .75, $9.00; 6 do. [lbs.] Blue Stone, .12, $.72; 6 do. [lbs.] Bro. Potash, .20, $1.20; 40 do. [lbs.] Cochineal, .75, $30.00; 4 do. [lbs.] Sal Ammoniac, .16, $.64; 6 do. [lbs.] Calorinc, .20, $1.20; 270 do. [lbs.] Alum, .03, $8.10; 100 do. [lbs.] Tin Crystals, .18, $18.00; 6 galls. Extr. Indigo, .20, $1.20; 18 lbs. Gum Arabic, .35, $6.30; 18 do. [lbs.] Block Tin, .25, $4.50; 400 do. [lbs.] Pipe Clay, .01¾, $7.00; 500 do. [lbs.] Fulling Soap, .07, $35.00; 60 galls. Red Liquor, .20, $12.00; 25 do. [galls.] Chlorite Potash, .20, $5.00; 60 do. [galls.] Extr. Logwood, .32½, $19.50; 55 do. [galls.] Red Liquor, .20, $11.00; 400 lbs. Soda Ash, .04, $16.00; 10 do. [lbs.] Nitric Acid, .60, $6.00; 150 do. [lbs.] Muriatic do. [Acid], .02½, $3.75; 25 do. [lbs.] Picric do. [Acid], .40, $10.00;; 12 do. [lbs.] Copperas, .01½, $.18; [Total] $1003.46; 6 lbs. Flavin, .60, $3.60; 188 do. [lbs.] Starch, .06, $11.28; [Subtotal,] $14.88; 2 Scales, $12.00; Horse Waggon, Sleigh & Harness, $100; 150 lbs., Chloride of Lime, 0.04,  $6.00.

Accounts Due. Jordan Marsh &Co., $248.00; F.E. Duglas, 43.50. [Total,] $1811.59.

Jordan, Marsh & Co. was a well-known Boston department store right up until a few years ago. They presumably carried Meikle’s products in their store. (See the References for a link to their lunch counter’s blueberry muffin recipe).

The assignment’s outcome was not clearly explained, but Meikle seems from the following to have been up and running not long thereafter.

UNION. Will you please accept a few lines from old Union. Although we have no great enterprises here yet we are a stirring people, and trying to keep pace with the outside world. We support four stores and two blacksmith shops. For manufacturies we have the Union Felt Mill, John Meikle Prop’r, Union Lumber Co., Union Marble Works, and Excelsior Mill of S.H. Buzzell (Farmington News, March 21, 1879).

UNION. The Union Felt Mill, John Meikle proprietor, is running on full time manufacturing carpets, table covers, and shoe linings (Farmington News, May 2, 1879).

UNION. The Eastern Railroad Company are putting a large stone culvert across the railroad and the main road between the Freight house and Passenger station, to turn the brook that comes down back of the station into Meikle’s mill pond. Hitherto it has run under the Freight house, through Mr. Gilman’s land, and thence across the street and flowed into the river below the Felt mill. What little business we have here looks as though it would be good during the fall and winter, as both the Felt and Excelsior companies have quite a number of  orders for goods, and are receiving more by nearly every mail (Farmington News, October 10, 1879).

John Meikle, felt mill, aged forty-four years (b. Scotland), headed a Wakefield, NH, household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. His household included Mary Meikle, keeping house, aged thirty-nine years (b. Scotland), Jane Meikle, a bookkeeper, aged twenty-one years (b. NH), John Meikle, works in felt mill, aged nineteen years (b. MA), Andrew J. Meikle, at school, aged fourteen years (b. NH), and Nellie Meikle, at school, aged twelve years (b. NH).

Other Wakefield inhabitants identified in 1880 as working in the felt mill were Henry W. Burnham, brothers George B. and John E. Corson, Charles W. Horne, Anson A. Moore, and Herbert D. Stevens, as well as Miekle’s brother, William Meikle, and a niece’s husband, Ogilvie Heggie. (Heggie was married to Mary Mickle, i.e., Miekle). The felt mill employees appeared in a cluster on the same Union village page as Meikle, as did his creditor, Robert H. Pike, hotel proprietor, aged fifty years (b. NH), several railroad employees, and Daniel S. Burley, commission business, aged thirty-eight years (b. NH), or on the following page.

William Miekle, works in felt mill, aged forty years (b. Scotland), headed a Wakefield, NH, household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Catherine Miekle, aged thirty-eight years (b. Scotland), and his children, John S. Miekle, at school, aged eight years (b. ME), William A. Miekle, at home, aged five years (b. ME), Mary A. Meikle, aged four years (b. NH), and Ellen W. Meikle, aged nine months (b. NH). Their daughter, Catherine E. Meikle, at school, aged ten years (b. NH), boarded with Rhoda Burley, keeping house, aged sixty-eight years (b. NH).

Ogilvie Heggie, works in felt mill, aged thirty years (b. Scotland), headed a Wakefield, NH, household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Mary Heggie, keeping house, aged twenty-five years (b. Scotland), and his children, Andrew M. Heggie, aged four years (b. Scotland), and Ellen Heggie, aged two years (b. Scotland).

UNION. John Meikle, proprietor of the felt mill, had just erected a brick picker house, which is the first brick building ever erected in this place. Mr. Meikle now gives employment to over twenty hands, and he intends to increase the number as soon as he can put in more machinery. He is manufacturing crumb cloths principally with a few robe linings and table covers. Varney & Drew are doing a driving business at their mill. Mr. John Hart of Milton Mills has purchased an interest in the saw mill here, and, it is reported, contemplates going into the excelsior business. Reuben Sanborn, our popular chair manufacturer, is about to put up a new mill. Success to all of the above parties (Farmington News, December 17, 1880).

UNION. Mr. Meikle is now putting additional machinery into his Felt Mill, preparatory to doing a more extensive business (Farmington News, January 14, 1881).

UNION. Mr. Geo. E. Prescott, second hand in the card room of the Union Felt Mill, got his left hand caught in the cards on Monday of last week, and nearly the whole hand was drawn in before he could extricate himself. The flesh on the inside of the hand was very badly lacerated and at first it was thought that he might lose the use of his hand, but hopes are now entertained that it will be saved. Mr. Prescott is a young man about 18 years of age and is full of courage. He is under the care of Dr. John E. Scruton (Farmington News, March 25, 1881).

The unfortunate Prescott was a son of Jonathan and Deborah (Gile) Prescott of Lebanon, ME. (He would later be a carpenter in Alton, NH).

UNION. Business is still good with us, though a few of the hands at the Felt Mill are working on short time while some changes are being made in some of the machinery, but they will be going full blast again before this is in print (Farmington News, August 12, 1881).

UNION. Mr. John Meikle is putting additional machinery into his felt mill (Farmington News, January 12 1883).

John Mickle of Union, [Wakefield,] NH, appeared in a list of American textile manufacturers published in Dockham’s Directory in 1884.

Despite John Meikle’s initial opposition, his son, Andrew J. Meikle, went to work in 1884 as a brakeman for the northern division of the B&M railroad.

Meikle, Andrew J - PH340728FIFTY YEARS IN LOCOMOTIVE CAB. Engineer Meikle Rounds Out Half Century Of Railroad Life With Fine Record. Fifty years in the cab of a locomotive as fireman and engineer without an accident is the record of engineer Andrew Meikle of North Conway who hauls to North Conway and Portsmouth passenger trains No, 2916 and 2917. His first railroad work was that of a brakeman on the Wolfeboro branch where he labored for only a short time. When a boy he was always around where he could watch the operation of a locomotive and wondered if he could ever handle the throttle valve of one of the old wood burners that hauled the trains by his home in Milton Mills. The time came in 1884 and he  reached the height of his ambition when he began throwing wood into the fire box of one of the old Northern Division locomotives. He was promoted to engineer in 1889 and with the exception of five years when he ran between North Conway and Boston, he has been on the now Conway branch in both passenger and freight service. In going back over his railroad life he tells of some interesting experiences with the old wood burning engines and what heavy snow storms meant to the operation of trains on the branch line of 71 miles. His father was always opposed to him engaging in railroad work but he could see that the son was bound to be a railroad man and with some degree of reluctance finally gave his consent. He was then 18 years old and admits the day he received word from the late John W. Sanborn, superintendent of the division, that he was to become an employe of the old Eastern Railroad was the happiest day of his life. He has never been in any accident through any fault of himself or any locomotive he has piloted over the rails in a half century. He is a native of Milton Mills and makes his home in North Conway (Portsmouth Herald, July 28, 1934).

UNION. Our old friend David E.D. Frost, the veteran schoolmaster of Middleton, has obtained a situation as night watchman at the felt mill (Farmington News, May 21, 1886).

UNION. Mr. John Meikle is giving his felt works a new coat of paint. That veteran knight of the brush, Albra P. Hanson does the work (Farmington News, September 10, 1886).

John Meikle, Sr., a merchant, aged fifty-two years, and John Meikle, Jr., a clerk, aged twenty-seven years, both U.S. citizens, on their return trip from Paisley, Scotland, traveled in a first class cabin on the Anchor Line’s S.S. Devonia from Glasgow, Scotland, to New York, NY, arriving January 27, 1887.

UNION.  We hear that J.W.S. Clark & Co. are putting in new machinery at the felt mill for the manufacture of shoddy. … It is reported that if satisfactory arrangements can be made a new mill will be erected soon below the felt mill, for the manufacture of hosiery (Farmington News, August 19, 1887).

J.W.S. Clark was agent for the Elmira Woolen mill of Elmira, NY. His brother, Thomas M. Clark, was superintendent for the Sawyer Woolen Company of Dover, NH. (They were natives of Scotland).

Son Andrew Meikle married in Conway, NH, April 28, 1888, Nellie C. Francis, he of Conway, NH, and she of Livermore, ME. He was a [railroad] fireman, aged twenty-two years, and she was aged twenty-four years. Rev. M.E. King performed the ceremony.

4-Set Mill For Sale - 1889John Meikle advertised for sale or lease his 4-set mill building in the Fibre & Fabric trade periodical in 1889. He offered good water and steam power, but no machinery. It was situated at the Union railroad depot.

FACTS WHITTLED DOWN. The picker at the felt mill in Union, N.H., was set on fire by a pair of small shears getting into it. The room was damaged before the flames were extinguished (Fibre & Fabric (Boston, MA), April 20, 1889).

UNION. John Meikle has started up block printing at his old printery. It is hoped Mr. Meikle will make things lively around there soon (Farmington News, January 23, 1891).

UNION. Mrs. John Meikle is visiting her niece, Mrs. O’Heggie, in Dover (Farmington News, April 17, 1891).

Mary Mickle married in the High Church in Paisley, Scotland, September 22, 1875, Ogilvie Heggie. (The Farmington News reporter meant presumably Mrs. O. Heggie, rather than O’Heggie). Ogilvie Heggie, works in felt mill, aged thirty years (b. Scotland), headed a Wakefield, NH, household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Mary Heggie, aged twenty-five years (b. Scotland), and his children, Andrew M. Heggie, aged four years (b. Scotland), and Ellen Heggie, aged two years (b. Scotland).

UNION. Miss Jean Meikle came home from Dover to spend the Fourth with her parents (Farmington News, July 10, 1891).

UNION. Mr. John Meikle, Sr., returned home on Saturday from a ten days’ trip to New York and New Jersey (Farmington News, July 24, 1891).

The Union Felt mill was said in 1891 to be not in operation, at least it was no longer operated by John Meikle. (Meikle had run it for about twelve to fifteen years). The Runnells brothers (Jay and Samuel W. Runnells) took it over next and ran it as the Star woolen mill.

UNION. All our mills here except the old Felt mill are in operation (Farmington News, August 21, 1891).

UNION. The old felt mill is being put in readiness to run for the manufacture of woolen goods. Miss Jean Meikle was at home from Dover over Sunday (Farmington News, November 6, 1891).

UNION. John Meikle, Jr., is at home on a week’s vacation from Rahway, N.J., and his sister, Jennie, was at home over the Sabbath and Monday from Dover (Farmington News, July 8, 1892).

Son John Meikle, Jr., married in the United Methodist Church in Rahway, NJ, September 7, 1892, Jane B. Thompson, she of Clark, NJ. He was a mechanic, aged thirty-two years, and she was aged twenty-three years. Rev. R.F. Hayes performed the ceremony.

UNION. The Star Woolen company are now making an average of over 1000 yards of cloth per day, giving employment to over thirty hands, They intend to put in more machinery in a short time. Mr. Jay Runnells, who was in the blacksmith business at Wolfeboro Junction for a number of years, is proprietor and his brother, Samuel W. Runnells of Cherry Valley, Mass., is superintendent. The finishing room is in charge of William Byrnes, recently of Lisbon, Me. He has four men with him. The card room is under the care of Joseph Boocock of Sandford, Me. He has three hands with him and Mr. Storer of Limerick, Me., has charge of the weave room, which employs fourteen hands. Then there is the picker room and spinning department (Farmington News, September 30, 1892).

UNION. John Meikle, wife and daughter are visiting relatives in Dover (February 3, 1893).

UNION. Mrs. John Meikle has been visiting her son Andrew at North Conway (Farmington News, March 17, 1893).

UNION. Mr. John Meikle returned home from Patterson, N.J., Saturday. Miss Jennie Meikle of Dover and Mrs. Andrew Meikle and baby Ruth of North Conway, spent Sunday week with their mother, Mrs. John Meikle (Farmington News, April 7, 1893).

This would seem to be the last mention of Union being the “at home” location for John and Mary Meikle. They moved to Clark, NJ, where their eldest son was living, or at least they began wintering there prior to a move. (Their daughters, Mary J. “Jennie” (or “Jean”) Meikle and Jennette Meikle, seem to have remained in the area until after the 1898 marriage of Jennie Miekle; their younger son, Andrew J. Meikle, lived in [North] Conway, NH).

UNION. Miss Jean Meikle is at home for a week’s vacation from her work in Dover (Farmington News, May 5, 1893).

John Mickle, Sr., aged over-60 years, headed a Clark, NJ, household at the time of the NJ State Census of 1895. His household included Mary Mickle, aged over-60 years. They were both foreign-born of “all other nationalities,” the other choices being Irish and German. They shared a two-family residence with the household of John R. Mickle. John R. Mickle was native-born, aged 20-60 years. His household included Jennie Mickle, native-born, aged 20-60 years, and Mary E. Mickle, native born, aged 5-or-younger years.

Jennie Miekle, aged thirty-seven years, and Jenett Miekle, aged twenty-seven years, traveled second cabin, i.e., second class, on the White Star Line’s R.M.S. Majestic, departing New York, NY, June 26, 1895, bound for Liverpool, England. Jeanie Mickle, Janet Miekle, and Kate Allan, all adults, traveled second cabin on the Allan Line’s State of California, departing Glasgow, Scotland, August 16, 1895, bound via Moville, [Northern] Ireland, for New York, NY, arriving there August 26, 1895.

Daughter [Mary J.] Jennie Meikle married in Wakefield, NH, March 26, 1898, Edward E. Lynn, she of Wakefield and he of Fall River, MA. She was a pantographer, aged thirty-nine years, and he was an engraver, aged forty-nine years.

UNION. There are unclaimed letters at the postoffice for Herbert Tanner, John B. Shirley, Mrs. Lizzie May, Miss Janett Meikle, Arthur Denis, Melisa Downing (Farmington News, September 30, 1898).

The Star Woolen Co., which had taken over the Union Felt Co. mill from John Meikle in 1891, ran only for a “few years” (Mitchell-Cony, 1908). In 1899, the mill was converted for a time to the manufacture of excelsior.

UNION, NH. The “Star” woolen mill is being converted into an excelsior mill (Fibre & Fabric, December 30, 1899).

“Excelsior” was a packing filler consisting of thin strips of wood shavings, a natural material then used in the same manner as modern Styrofoam “popcorn” packing materials.

Arthur L. Taft acquired the mill property next and converted it back to woolen manufacturing, or at least something like it. He appeared in the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census of Wakefield (“Union”), NH, before he took over, as a satinet manufacturer, aged forty-eight years (b. MA). (Satinet is a satin-like material made of mostly cotton with some wool).

UNION. It is reported that the Star mill, which has recently been bought by A.F. Taft, is soon to be started up (Farmington News, September 20, 1901).

John Meikle, a block printer, aged sixty-four years (b. Scotland), headed a Clark, NJ, household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of forty-three years), Mary Meikle, aged sixty-three years (b. Scotland). John Meikle rented their house. Mary Meikle was the mother of five children, of whom four were still living. They had both immigrated into the U.S. in 1856.

John Miekle of Cranford, NJ, made his last will, January 31, 1903. He devised all his real and personal property, wherever found, to his wife, Mary Meikle, whom he named also as executrix. John Meikle, Jr., Jeanette Meikle, Jennie Lynn of Providence, RI, and Mary Heggie of North Adams, Mass., signed as witnesses. He died at sometime between that January 31, 1903 date and January 18, 1905, when his will was proved in the Union County Surrogate’s Office in Elizabeth, NJ. Jeanette Meikle then and there swore that she saw the testator sign the will in the presence of herself and the other witnesses. George H. Parrott authorized Mary Meikle to proceed as executrix (Union County Probate, T:489).

Mary Meikle, a housewife, aged sixty-nine years (b. Scotland), headed a Garwood, Elizabeth, NJ, household at the time of the NJ State Census of 1905. Her household included her daughter, Jeanette Meikle, a milliner, aged thirty-two years (b. NH). Mary Meikle owned their house of Centre Street, free-and-clear. She had been in the U.S. for fifty-one years.

Son-in-law Ernest E. Lynn died in Providence, RI, May 28, 1906, aged fifty-nine years.

Arthur L. Taft’s Union Woolen mill burned in 1908 (Guild & Lord, 1908).

UNION. Miss Jeanette Meikle is visiting her brother Andrew at North Conway this week (Farmington News, April 30, 1909).

Mary Meikle, own income, aged seventy-three years (b. Scotland (Eng.)), headed a Garwood, NJ, household at the time of the Thirteenth (1910) Federal Census. Her household included her daughter, Jennett Meikle, own income, aged forty years (b. NH). Mary Meikle owned their house at 306 Centre Street East, free-and-clear. She was the mother of four children, of whom four were still living. She reportedly immigrated into the U.S. in 1854.

UNION. Jeannette Meikle of Garwood, N.J., was called here by the illness of Mrs. Mary Horne. Mrs. Mary F., widow of the late Charles W. Horne, died of typhoid fever Saturday, Jan. 18, after a few days’ illness. She had been a resident of Union for many years and will be greatly missed in the community. Funeral services from the church Tuesday under the direction of Unity Chapter, O.E.S. Rev. R.H. Huse conducted the service (Farmington News, January 24, 1913).

Charles W. and Mary F. (Allen) Horne had been next-door neighbors of the Meikles in Union village, and Charles W. Horne had worked for a time in the Union Felt mill.

Mary Mickle, retired, aged seventy-nine years (b. Scotland), headed a Garwood, NJ, household at the time of the NJ State Census of 1915. Her household included Jennie Lynn, retired, aged fifty-six years (b. NH), and Jeanette Mickle, aged forty-six years (b. NH). Mary Mickle owned their house at 306 Centre Street, free-and-clear.

Mary (McArthur) Meikle died October 15, 1915, aged seventy-nine years.

Jenette Meikle, aged fifty-one years (b. NH), headed a Garwood, NJ, household at the time of the Fourteenth (1920) Federal Census. Her household included her sister, Jennie Lind [Lynn], a chemical factory matron, aged sixty-one years (b. NH). Jeannette Meikle owned their house at 306 Center Street, free-and-clear.

Personal Paragraphs. Miss Jeanette Meikle and her sister, Mrs. Jean Lynn, have returned to their home in Garwood, N.J., after visiting local relatives (North Adams Transcript (North Adams, MA), August 28, 1926).

Jeannette Meikle, aged sixty-one years (b. NH), headed a Garwood, NJ, household at the time of the Fifteenth (1930) Federal Census. Her household included her sister, Jennie Lynn, a widow, aged seventy-one years (b. NH), and her roomer, Hans E. Stacey, a piano co. cost clerk, aged thirty-two years (b. Australia). Jeannette Meikle owned their house at 409 Center Street, which was valued at $9,000. They had a radio set.

North Conway Station - 1958
Boston & Maine Railroad Station, North Conway

RAILROAD NOTES. Andrew Meikle, engineer on the train which runs between this the city and North Conway, had the misfortune to break his leg of Friday. He had gone from his home in North Conway to Intervale in his car to get a lawn mover which he had left to be sharpened. While lifting the lawn mower into the rumble seat of the car his foot slipped from the step and he fell, resulting in a bad fracture to his leg. His place on this run is being taken by a spare engineer from the Dover board (Portsmouth Herald, [Tuesday,] June 21, 1932).

Son Andrew J. Meikle of North Conway, NH, died in the Portsmouth Hospital in Portsmouth, NH, November 7, 1934, aged sixty-eight years.

VETERAN OF B&M RAILROAD DIES IN HOSPITAL. Andrew Meikle, Engineer, Stricken After His Regular Run To This City. Andrew Meikle, veteran locomotive engineer for the Boston & Maine railroad, died on Wednesday night in the Portsmouth Hospital where he was removed earlier in the day. After completing the morning run between North Conway and this city he suffered an ill turn in a passenger car in the railroad yard. Dr. Luce was called and he ordered him to the hospital where he remained unconscious and passed away shortly before 11 p.m. He was a native of Milton Mills but has resided for some years in North Conway. His railroad life covers a period of 60 years, 50 of which he has been employed as fireman and engineer. His first work was as brakeman on the Wolfeboro branch. With the exception of five years when he worked on the main line between North Conway and Boston, he has run on the Conway branch in both freight and passenger service. He has never been in any accident, through any fault of his own. He was highly respected in the town where he lived and among railroad workers in general. He was a member of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers, New England Railroad Veterans Association and Masons. He is survived by his wife and one daughter, Mrs. Ora McCrellis of Sanbornville. He recently received a gold pass from the railroad in honor of his long and faithful service (Portsmouth Herald, November 8, 1934).

Daughter Jeannette Miekle died in Rahway, NJ, October 6, 1938, aged seventy years.

Sister Is Beneficiary. (Elisabeth Bureau of The Courier-News). Elizabeth – Miss Jeannette Meikle, who died Oct. 6 in Garwood, left her estate to a sister, Jennie M. Lynn, according to the will which was admitted to probate yesterday by Surrogate Charles A. Otto Jr. The decedent was the aunt of Hazel M. Meyers and Miss Jeannette Meikle, both of 7 Picton St., Westfield, and Charles Meikle, Clark Township (Courier News (Bridgewater, NJ), January 21, 1939).

Son John Meikle, Jr., died in New Jersey, in 1939, aged seventy-nine years.

Andrew Heggie, a post office mail carrier, aged sixty-two years (b. Scotland), headed a North Adams, MA, household at the time of the Sixteenth (1940) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Elizabeth Heggie, aged sixty-eight years (b. NY), his children, Norman Heggie, a taxi proprietor, aged thirty-four years (b. MA), and Edith Heggie, a high school physical instructor, aged thirty-three years (b. MA), and his cousin, Jennie Lynn, a widow, aged eighty-one years (b. NH). Andrew Heggie owned their house at 24 Jackson Street, which was valued at $2,500. They had all resided in the same house in 1935, except Jennie Lynn, who had resided in Garwood, NJ.

Daughter [Mary] Jean “Jennie” (Meikle) Lynn died in Clark, NJ, June 1, 1944, aged eighty-five years.

Mrs. Jennie Lynn, Clark Township. Funeral services for Mrs. Jennie Lynn, 85 years old, who resided with her nephew and niece, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Meikle of Grand St., were held Saturday afternoon from Gray’s Funeral Home, Westfield. The Rev. R.E. Potter of Rahway conducted the service, and interment was in Rosedale Cemetery, Linden. Mrs. Lynn died Thursday (June 1, 1944) after a short illness. Mrs. Lynn, widow of Ernest Lynn, had resided in Clark Township five years, and prior to that lived in Garwood 25 years. She was a native of Milton Mills, N.H. Surviving are nephews and nieces, including Charles and Herbert Meikle of Clark, John Meikle of Rahway. Mrs. Hazel Meyers, Miss Jeannette Meikle of Clark, Mrs. Charles Bloom of Watsonville, Calif., and Mrs. Ora McCrillis of North Conway, N.H. (Courier News (Bridgewater, NJ), June 5, 1944).

Many a mickle makes a muckle.


Find a Grave. (2013, January 6). Andrew Meikle. Retrieved from

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Find a Grave. (2013, January 14). Mary Miekle. Retrieved from

Find a Grave. (2014, February 28). Edward Edward Lynn. Retrieved from

Find a Grave. (2012, March 7). Robert Taylor. Retrieved from

MacRury, Elizabeth B. (1987). Footsteps of Pride to the Past, 1774-1974, Wakefield, New Hampshire. Wakefield, NH: Wilson’s Printers

Mitchell-Cony. (1908). The Town Register: Farmington, Milton, Wakefield, Middleton, Brookfield, 1907-8. Retrieved from

New England Today. (2020). Jordan Marsh Blueberry Muffins. Retrieved from

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Author: Muriel Bristol

"Lady drinking tea"

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