Abbie Spencer Blood 1868 – 1941

Abbie S Blood was born about 1868 in Plainfield, NH, the daughter of Daniel F Blood and Louisa M Walker.  She was their second child, but her older brother Willie died before she was born.  

The family was listed in the 1870 census living in Plainfield.  Daniel was a farmer, but had no real estate value listed, and only $100 worth of personal property.  They were living with Simon and Lucy S Heath, but in 1870, relationships were not listed in the census. 

Abbie had more siblings join the family, all born in Plainfield.  Minnie was born in 1871, but died of pneumonia at age 9 months.  Bertha was born in 1874, and Daniel in 1877.  They were counted in the 1880 census in Plainfield.  Abbie’s father was a farm laborer, Louisa was “keeping house”, and Abbie was “at home” while other children her age living in the same area, were listed as “at school.” 

The Blood family lived next door to the Lewin family, who had a lodger named Walter Hunt, a farm laborer.  On 31 January, 1885, Abbie married Walter in Cornish NH.  This marriage was listed as the first for both.  The ages were given as 27 and 19 but Abbie was probably only 17.  He was a farmer, and she was a housekeeper.  Abbie and Walter had three children:  Nina born in 1886, Hugh in 1888, and William in 1892. 

Walter Hunt apparently had a drinking problem, and became jealous of a neighbor.  The Vermont Watchman published this story on 21 October 1896:  Irving Smith, a prosperous farmer of Plainfield, N.H., was shot and killed on the morning of October 12 by Walter Hunt, who then shot himself.  The murder was attended with circumstances of unusual atrocity.  Hunt approached Smith while at work in his field, picked a quarrel, and after a few words, shot him down.  So close was the murderer to his victim that the charge of shot tore a hole through his chest.  Hunt then reloaded his gun and again fired, placing the muzzle of the weapon almost against Smith’s head, and blowing away a part of the skull.  Still another shot was fired into the body before the murderer fled.  When people from the nearest house reached the place Smith’s clothing was on fire.  Hunt is said to have threatened repeatedly to kill Smith, of whom he was madly jealous.  Lately he has been drinking heavily and that morning he was under the influence of liquor.  His jail record is bad, and he had served a term in jail for incendiarism. 

More information was printed 13 October in the Tyrone Daily Herald (Tyrone PA)  Murder and Suicide  Plainfield NH Oct 13 – Irving Smith, a prosperous farmer of this village, was killed last night by Walter Hunt, and other villager, who then committed suicide.  Hunt had trouble with Smith over the latter’s attentions to Mrs. Hunt, alleging an undue friendship on his part.  Later Hunt’s farm buildings were burned [probably means Smiths’s buildings] and Hunt was taken into custody on a charge of incendiarism, preferred by Smith, but was discharged on the ground of lack of evidence.  Yesterday, Hunt went into the field where Smith was working, and the double tragedy followed.

On 6 October 1897 in Cornish, Abbie married George R Gassett, son of Reuben Gassett and Mary Staples.  This was George’s third marriage, (he was twice widowed) and her second.  George was a blacksmith, and Abbie was working as a house maid. 

The 1900 census lists Abbie and George living in Lempster, NH, where George was farming.  This record says that Abbie had given birth to one child, who was still living.  This is incorrect – she had one Gassett child by then  – Daniel who was born in 1898, but her three children from her first marriage were in the household.    

Abbie and George had twin daughters, Hallie and Hazel, born in 1902 in Lempster. 

The 1910 census lists George and Abbie in Lempster, where George worked as a carpenter.  The only child with them is her son William Hunt.  By this time, daughter Nina had married and was living elsewhere.  Hugh was also living elsewhere.  However, I have not yet been able to find Daniel, Hazel, and Hallie Gassett in the 1910 census.  This record also says that Abbie has had seven children, with six surviving.  I do not know if the child who died young was a Hunt or a Gassett.

Abbie’s son William died in 1918 of myelitis, a disease involving inflammation of the spinal cord. 

In 1920, Abbie and George lived in Lempster, where George operated a general farm.  Their children Daniel, Hazel, and Hallie were living with them.   Hazel married Raymond Tolbert in 1920, Hazel married Kenneth Holt in 1922, and Daniel married Dorothy Vallient in 1923.  Daniel died in 1926 of a retroperitoneal sarcoma. 

The 1930 census lists Abbie and George in Lempster.  George was working as a carpenter.  They owned a house on Unity Road, which was valued at $250.  George died 11 February 1935 in Lempster.  Cause of death was chronic cystitis.  His occupation was listed as blacksmith, and he was buried at East Lempster.  Their daughter Hazel Tolbert died the same day in Hanover, of pneumonia.

Abbie was counted in the 1940 census in East Lempster, widowed, living with Charles Gassett, her brother-in-law.  She died 29 June 1941.


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