Windham Life and Times – January 27, 2017

100 Years Ago in Windham

Frank Ayer's Cottage about 1898 as shown in the Granite Monthly.

Frank Ayer’s Cottage about 1898 as shown in the Granite Monthly


“WINDHAM, January 23.—Fishing through the ice at Cobbett’s Pond has been largely engaged in this winter. One pickerel 25 inches long is reported.”

“Frank H. Ayer, who recently died in Nashua, leaving a large estate and no immediate family, was the owner of ‘Pioneer Cottage,’ the first summer camp on Cobbett’s Pond, which he and others built in the spring of 1886.” (Died January 12th)


     Frank Hamilton Ayer was born in Nashua N.H., June 21, 1857. His parents were Francis Brown Ayer, M.D. and his wife Anne Marie (Baldwin) Ayer. His boyhood passed in his native city and his preparation for Yale was completed at Phillips Academy, Andover, Mass. From the time of graduation until 1891 he was connected with the Nashua Bobbin and Shuttle Company, of which he was at one time president and treasurer. In the latter year he retired from the above company and became the Eastern representative of the Ironton Door and Manufacturing Company, of Ironton, Ohio. In 1905, he relinquished his position and entered upon the real estate business in Nashua, largely in connection with his own investments and his interest in the development of Nashua. He was an enthusiastic golfer and built the first golf course in New Hampshire. He denies having ever indulged in extended travel, or having engaged in politics or any other avocations which offer themselves to the average citizen, and leaves it to be inferred that he has limited his activities exclusively to his business and family affairs. He married January 26, 1887, Ellen Frances Batchelder, daughter of Orison and Anne Maria (Clark) Batchelder of Manchester, N.H.. They have no children. “He hated sham and was a scornful critic of the bootlicking of his day and generation.” His wife died in 1910. History of the Class of Eighty, Yale Alumni Weekly


      The Nashua Bobbin and Spool Company is a long-established industry. Of its origin and progress in earlier times we have already written. It has supplied mills in every part of the country. Within a few months it has been reorganized with Frank H. Ayer, president and treasurer; G.H. Hatch, clerk; and Ira Cross, superintendent. It makes bobbins, spools and shuttles for all kinds of textile fabrics,–cotton, woolen, silk, linen, hemp and jute; also rollers for skates and other kinds of wood-work. The works are located on Water Street. The floorage of the shops is nearly three acres, and its business this year one hundred and fifty thousand dollars, and in good times twice that amount. White birch and maple are material for spools and shuttles, but of late dog-wood and persimmon are shipped from North Carolina. History of Nashua NH.


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