Milton Mills and Milton’s C.H. Prescott Boarding Houses, 1887-c1908

By Muriel Bristol | September 15, 2021

Crosby Hanson Prescott was born in Acton, ME, October 7, 1850, son of Sewall W. and Marilla M. (Hersom) Prescott.

Sewell W. Prescott, a farmer, aged fifty-two years (b. ME), headed an Acton, ME, household at the time of the Tenth (1880) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Marilla M. Prescott, keeping house, aged forty-six years (b. ME), and his son, Crosby H. Prescott, a farmer, aged twenty-nine years (b. ME).

Crosby H. Prescott married in Rochester, NH, October 15, 1885, Annie F. Hurd, both of Acton, ME. He was a waiter, aged thirty-five years, and she was aged thirty-five years. Rev. Edward C. Bass performed the ceremony. She was born in Acton, ME, September 26, 1854, daughter of Mark C. and Rhoby P. (Ricker) Hurd. (Mark C. Hurd was a farmer and postmaster of Acton, ME).

Crosby H. Prescott worked at some point at the Crawford House hotel, likely as a waiter. The Crawford House was one of New Hampshire’s “Grand Summer Resorts.” It had been founded in Crawford Notch in Carroll, NH, in 1851. After a disastrous fire, it had been rebuilt in 1859 as the then largest hotel in the state, and run successfully until closed in 1975.

Crawford House - 1910This [Crawford House] is a good hotel of the first class, 1,900 feet above the sea, with broad and almost interminable piazzas, cool and airy halls, post-office, telegraph-office, livery-stable, bowling-alley, gaslights; environs which the landscape-gardener has justly approved; and a dining-room where even Epicurus or Uncle Sam Ward need not famish …. Near the front of the house is the pretty little Saco Lake, the cradle of the Saco River, and so far widened and deepened by art as to give a reason for being for the boats which float on its crystal tide. The rugged forest between the lake and the overhanging mountain has been combed and brushed and perfumed, and otherwise adorned for a summer pleasaunce, so that it has won the happily suggestive name of Idlewild (Chisholm’s White-Mountain Guide-Book, 1887).

Crosby H. Prescott and his wife established together a series of smaller hotels and summer boarding houses in Milton Mills and Milton. They catered largely to a relatively new clientele: rusticators.

Hotel Prescott

SUMMER RESORTS. HOTEL PRESCOTT – Pleasantly situated; a desirable home for those seeking health, comfort and pleasure; good fishing and gunning; nice drives; good livery connected with the house; terms, $5 to $9 per week; transient $2 per day. C.H. PRESCOTT, Proprietor, Milton Mills, N.H.; formerly of the Crawford House, White Mountains. SSuTTh6t* jy16 (Boston Globe, July 17, 1887).

C.H. Prescott appeared in the Milton business directory of 1889, as proprietor of the eponymous Prescott House hotel (and livery stable) in Milton Mills.

SUMMER RESORTS. SUMMER BOARD for ladies or gentlemen can be obtained in a beautiful village in New Hampshire; home comforts; close to 3 churches and post office, organ, Boston papers, good livery, etc.; board $4 to $7 per week. Address C.H. PRESCOTT, Milton Mills, N.H. SuWF15t* jy13 (Boston Globe, July 16, 1890).

SUMMER RESORTS. HOTEL PRESCOTT – Pleasantly situated; a desirable home for those seeking health, comfort and pleasure; nice drives, good livery connected with the house ; terms $5 to $6 per week; transient $2 per day. C.H. PRESCOTT, Proprietor, Milton Mills, N.H. ThSu4t* au20 (Boston Globe, August 20, 1891).

C.H. Prescott appeared in the Milton business directory of 1892, as proprietor of the Hotel Prescott in Milton Mills. He appeared in the Milton business directories of  1894, and 1898, as proprietor of a summer boarding house at Milton Mills.

Crosby H. Prescott, a hotel headwaiter, aged forty-nine years (b. ME), headed a Milton (“Milton Mills Village”) household at the time of the Twelfth (1900) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of fifteen years), Annie F. Prescott, aged forty-five years (b. ME), his children, Lillian A. Prescott, at school, aged fourteen years (b. ME), Marion M. Prescott, at school, aged twelve years (b. NH), and Ruth H. Prescott, at school, aged eight years (b. NH), and his boarders, Clara A. Perkins, closing on shoes, aged twenty-six years, and Nellie B. Pike, a shoe lining maker, aged twenty years (b. ME). Crosby H. Prescott rented their house. Their household appeared in the enumeration between those of Sarah A. Witham, a home-keeper, aged eighty-six years (b. NH), and Frank J. Hurd, a factory fireman, aged forty-eight years (b. ME).

Western Avenue Cottage

C.H. Prescott appeared in the Milton business directories of 1901, as proprietor of a summer boarding house at Milton Mills.

Milton. WESTERN AVE. COTTAGE. Mrs. C.H. Prescott, owner. P.O. address, Milton Mills; railroad station, Union. Price $6 per week; accommodates 12 guests. Open all the year (Rollins, 1902).

Miltonia House

The Prescotts transferred their summer boarding house operation from Milton Mills to Milton Three Ponds, at sometime between 1902 and 1903. (Their boarding house did not appear in the directory of 1904).

SUMMER RESORTS. NEW HAMPSHIRE. MILTONIA HOUSE, Milton, N.H. -located on Miltonia lake, which for bass, white perch, pickerel and other varieties of fish, cannot be surpassed in the state; parties desirous of passing their vacation in the country should avail themselves of the excellent privilege this house affords; fine country scenery, pleasant drives, boats, telephone, postoffice, drug store, RR station close to house; terms $7 per week. C.H. PRESCOTT, Miltonia House, Milton, N.H.  (Boston Globe, August 7, 1904).

C.H. Prescott appeared in the Milton business directories of 1905-06, as proprietor of Miltonia House, at 50-52 Main Street in Milton, i.e., at Milton Three Ponds rather than, as formerly, at Milton Mills. He resided at the same address.

Prescott, CH - Miltonia HouseC.H. Prescott appeared in the NH Register, State Year-book and Legislative Manual directories of 1906, and 1907, as proprietor of the Miltonia House hotel.

C.H. Prescott appeared in the Milton directory of 1909, as having removed to Rochester, NH. (It would seem that he had actually gone to Farmington, NH).

Farmington, NH

Chester A. Bodwell, a shoe factory stitcher, aged twenty-two years (b. ME), headed a Farmington, NH, household at the time of the Thirteenth (1910) Federal Census. His household included his wife (of three years), Ruth H. Bodwell, aged eighteen years (b. NH), his daughter, Frances L. Bodwell, aged three months (b. NH), his father-in-law, Crosby H. Prescott, a shoe factory treer, aged fifty-nine years (b. ME), and his mother-in-law, Annie F. Prescott, aged fifty-five years (b. ME). (They had been married for twenty-five years). Chester A. Bodwell rented their house on North Main Street. Ruth H. Bodwell was the mother of one child, of whom one was still living. Annie F. Prescott was the mother of four children, of whom three were still living.

Crosby H. Prescott, a janitor, aged sixty-nine years (b. ME), headed a Farmington, NH, household at the time of the Fourteenth (1920) Federal Census. His household included his wife, Annie F. Prescott, aged sixty-five years (b. ME), and his grandchildren, Frances L. Bodwell, aged ten years (b. NH), and Donald C. Bodwell, aged six years (b. NH). Crosby H. Prescott owned their house at 24 Elm Street, with a mortgage.

(The grandchildren’s father, Chester A. Bodwell, a shoe shop foreman, aged thirty-one years (b. ME), was one of five boarders in the Farmington, NH, household of Henrietta Noyes, a laundress, aged forty-seven years (b. NH). He divorced Ruth H. (Prescott) Bodwell in Strafford County, February 27, 1923).

PERSONAL. C.H. Prescott who has been ill for several months, was up town on Tuesday, the first time since February (Farmington News, May 21, 1920).

TO LET. Convenient tenement at 24 Elm St. Apply to C.H. Prescott (Farmington News, May 21, 1920).

Bertrand E. Twombly, his wife Bessie P. (Plummer) Twombly, and their two sons, took up residence in the Farmington, NH, household of C.H. Prescott over the winter of 1920-21.

LOCAL. B.E. Twombly and family are moving from their farm at West Milton to the C.H. Prescott house on Elm street for the winter (Farmington News, November 12, 1920).

WEST MILTON. Mrs. Annie Cook spent part of last Friday with Mrs. C.H. Prescott in Farmington. Mr. Prescott is still in poor health (Farmington News, June 17, 1921).

Crosby H. Prescott died of angina pectoris in Farmington, NH, December 8, 1921, aged seventy-two years, two months, and one day. He had been a resident of Farmington for twelve years, i.e., since circa 1908-09, having formerly resided in Milton. E.S. Huntress, M.D., signed the death certificate.

Annie Prescott, a widow, aged seventy-five years (b. ME), headed a Rochester, NH, household at the time of the Fifteenth (1930) Federal Census. She owned her house at 36 Winter Street, which was valued at $1,600. She did not have a radio set.

Annie F. Prescott appeared in the Rochester, NH, directory of 1933, as the widow of Crosby H. Prescott, with her house at 36 Winter Street.

Annie F. (Hurd) Prescott died of lobar pneumonia at 36 Winter Street in Rochester, NH, August 10, 1933, aged seventy-eight years, ten months, and fifteen days. She had been a resident of Rochester, NH, for ten years, i.e., since circa 1922-23, having formerly resided in Farmington, NH. Edson M. Abbott, M.D., signed the death certificate.


References:

Rollins, Frank W. (1902). Tourists’ Guide-book to the State of New Hampshire. Retrieved from books.google.com/books?id=olz9I0XJhncC&pg=PA72

Author: Muriel Bristol

"Lady drinking tea"

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