Tributes to
Residents of the Cranberry Isles
Who died in 1925

Very likely written by
Professor William Otis Sawtelle
in 1926

These tributes contain a great deal of detail of the genealogy of most of the early families -- Stanley, Gilley, Bunker, Spurling, Bulger, Lurvey -- on the Cranberry Isles.
-- Hugh L. Dwelley, August 16, 2003

This document courtesy of Hugh Dwelley and the Islesford Historical Society

My copy of the document is marked on top, as follows:

The records of the town clerk as published in the last report of the Town of Cranberry Isles lists the following adult deaths during the year 1925:

January 28 - Charles E. Spurling, aged 74.
January 31 - Hannah G, Bunker, aged 88.
April 25 - Mary L. Bulger, aged 90.
May 9 - Nettie A. Stanley, aged 64.
October 25 - Lucinda G. Stanley, aged 92.

Thus stand the records; even in their brevity, considering the age reached by some of our townspeople, replete in significance.  We would be remiss did we not pay tribute to the memory of our friends to whom the gates have opened.

In the eighth chapter of the Book of Job, eighth verse, it is written: Inquire, I pray thee, of the former age and prepare thyself to the search of their fathers.

In making the inquires momentary glimpses of the past will be afforded, and a resultant realization will come to us of our own continuous connection, through family ties, with days gone and long, long gone.

CHARLES EATON SPURLING, born July 9, 1850, at Cranberry Isle; died January 28, 1925, at Cranberry Isle; son of Joseph and Matilda Young Spurling; grandson of Robert and Mary Stanley Spurling; great grandson of Benjamin and Fanny Guptill Spurling.  Benjamin Spurling, first of the name on the Cranberry Isles, removed from Gouldsboro with his wife and young children in 1787.  He was one of the Mount Desert settlers who received a deed of land from Marie Therese de la Mothe Cadillac, and portions of his grant are still occupied by descendants.

In 1728, a James Spurling was a taxpayer in Newcastle, New Hampshire, and his descendants dwelt in Madbury parish, Dover.  Benjamin and his brother James removed from Dover to Gouldsboro where the former was a land owner as early as 1777.

Virginia records show that a Richard Spurling, of the city of London was in America as early as 1623, while later generations took root in Maryland, Bermuda, and New Hampshire.

On his mother's side Captain Charles was descended from the Youngs of York, Maine, and of the Guptills and Goodwins of Berwick.  His maternal grandmother, Mary Stanley, was the daughter of Thomas and Hannah Manchester Stanley who were the founders of the Great Cranberry Isle branch of the Stanley family.  Thomas Stanley was a nephew of John Stanley who with his wife, Marguerite La Croix, were the first permanent settlers on Little Cranberry.  To Samuel Sewall, administrator of the estate of John Stanley, deceased, Madame de la Gregoire deeded, 1792, the western end of LCI.

Charles Spurling's Manchester line runs back to participants in many of the Indian and Colonial wars and in the Revolution; and finally to Thomas Manchester, immigrant from England who was at New Haven, Connecticut, 1639.

John Manchester, of Thomas of New Haven, removed from New Marblehead, now Windham, Maine, to Machias and a few years later to what is now Manchester's Point, Northeast Harbor, an early settler.  His wife was Comfort Bunker, of the family mentioned by Governor Francis Bernard in his diary as living on the Cranberry Isles, 1762.

Captain Charles Eaton Spurling is well and pleasantly remembered by many friends and acquaintances.  For many years he, conducted the Clifton House dock at Northeast Harbor.  At one time he followed the sea, mate on a vessel commanded by his father in law.  Merchant on Great Cranberry, he occupied a prominent position in the community.  His wife, Frances Bulger, daughter of Samuel and Mary Lurvey Bulger, and granddaughter of Michael and Dorothy Newman Bulger, survives him, also numerous children and grandchildren.

HANNAH GILLEY BUNKER, born June 3, 1836, at Cranberry Isles; died January 31, 1925, at Great Cranberry; daughter of Elisha and Hannah Manchester Stanley Gilley, of Baker's Island; granddaughter of William and Hannah Lurvey Gilley, first settlers on that island, 1806; great granddaughter of William and Eunice Bunker Gilley, Mount Desert pioneers.

Willaim Gilley, the first, was at Mount Desert prior to 1770, and in a document dated 1777 he is described as "of Cranberry Island, the Mass. State Fisherman."

Eunice Bunker was the daughter of John and Hannah Drew Bunker of Dover, New Hampshire.  John and his five sons, all mature men at the time of the Revolution were in this region in the seventeen sixties.  A Jonathan and a Benjamin are mentioned in Governor Bernard's surveyor's field notes, 1763, living on Deadman's Point, Great Cranberry.  John Bunker the elder, was a grandson of James of Dover, early proprietor of that town, whose successful defense of his garrison house at the time of the Oyster River massacres forms an important bit of Indian war history.

Hannah Gilley's maternal grandparents were John and Phebe Rich Stanley; great grandparents, John and Marguerite La Croix Stanley; first permanent settlers on Little Cranberry Isle, whose hearth stones still remain undisturbed in the field just north of the Head.  Both John and Marguerite are buried on Maypole Point.

Phebe Rich was the daughter of John and Emma Cross Rich, early settlers at Bass Harbor, who came from Marblehead and settled on what is now Lopaus Point.  Her grandparents were Jonathan and Phebe Bruges Rich, of Marblehead.

All that is known of Marguerite is that she was very beautiful, with dark eyes and jet black hair; that it was she who introduced May Day festivities to the islanders, who, for many years, on the first of that month gathered around a May pole erected on the south-west part of Little Cranberry, still known as Maypole Point.

John Stanley's is the oldest marked grave on the islands.  A replica of the original stone marks the spot not too far from where Marguerite's May pole stood.  Descendants of John and Marguerite, now in the eighth generation, are today living in the town.

On July 23, 1853, Hannah Gilley married William P. Bunker, son of Beniah, grandson of Joseph.  They were the parents of a family of eleven; and of Hannah Gilley Bunker, as of the virtuous women of Proverbs, it may be well said, Her children children arise up and call her blessed.

MARY LURVEY BULGER, born November 24, 1834, at Cranberry Isles; died April 25, 1925, at Great Cranberry; youngest child of "Skipper Tom" Stanley and his first wife, Mary Lurvey; granddaughter of Thomas and Harriet Manchester Stanley, first of the name on Great Cranberry.  She was the widow of Samuel Bulger, son of Michael and Dorothy Newman Bulger.  Her maternal grandparents were Jacob and Hannah Boynton Lurvey, who with their five daughters left Newburyport in 1791 for Southwest Harbor in a vessel which Jacob had built with his own hands for the purpose.

Peter Lurvey and his wife Mary were at Ipswich, Massachusetts as early as 1670.  He is said to have been a Russian Jew from Archangel, Russia, who, after living for a time in England, determined to migrate to America.

The immigrant Boynton, William by name, was born at East Riding, Yorkshire, 1606, and arrived at Rowley, Massachusetts, 1636.  He was a schoolteacher, probably the first in the town; also described as planter, weaver, and tailor.  His son Joshua was a soldier under Major Appleton in the Narraganset war, 1675; he also saw service under Captain Brockelbank at Sudbury, 1676.  A grandson of Joshua, Enoch, fought at Louisbourg, 1745; and this Enoch was Mary Lurvey Bulger's great grandfather.

Jacob Lurvey, her grandfather, served in the Revolution, first as a private in the Massachusetts line, and later, in the Navy under Captain Manley.

As a youth Jacob was apprenticed to Enoch Boynton, then of Byfield, Massachusetts, who, among other things, agreed to give him the opportunities of obtaining an education.  In this particular Boynton failed; but his daughter Hannah seems to have supplied the deficiency by falling in love with the young man whom she afterwards married; then diligently instructed him in the various branches of learning.

Hannah Boynton Lurvey was a remarkable woman; well educated and endowed by nature with a superior intellect.  Her influence in the then newly incorporated town of Mount Desert cannot be overestimated, while the qualities transmitted to her descendants have resulted in far reaching consequences in the annals of the region.

Hannah Lurvey, her daughter, was the wife of William Gilley, of Baker's Island.  To him she bore six sons and six daughters, all of whom grew to maturity, while all but two of them married and had children.  John Gilley was her son.

Rachel Lurvey married John Carroll, of Southwest Harbor.  One of her daughters, May Ann Carroll, who is still living, taught school in the Mount Desert region for fifty three consecutive years.

Sarah Lurvey was the wife of Moses Ladd, and Mary Lurvey married Skipper Tom Stanley.

Mary Lurvey Bulger was worthy of her intellectual, rugged, Godfearing New England ancestors.  She was long a member of the Congregational Church of Great Cranberry Isle, and ever active, during the course of her long and useful life, in good works.  Of her it may be well said: She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and her tongue is the law of kindness.

NETTIE AUGUSTA STANLEY, born September 15, 1861, at Cranberry Isle; died May 9, 1925, at Cranberry Isle; wife of Hiram Ladd Stanley, son of Jonathan and Irene Ladd Stanley; and daughter of Benjamin and Asenath Dolliver Stanley; granddaughter of Enoch and Hannah Newman Spurling; great granddaughter of Benjamin and Fanny Guptill Spurling.

Her grandfather, Enoch Spurling, took a most active part in the affairs of Mount Desert.  Ship owner and master, he made many foreign voyages.  Actively interested in civic affairs, he was selectman of the town of Mount Desert, and his name is of frequent occurrence in the records.  It was he who was largely responsible for the separation of the Cranberry Isles from the town of Mount Desert, and he served on the first board of selectmen of the town of that name, and was also the first town clerk.

Her mother was a Dolliver, whose ancestry runs back to Wales by the way of Dorsetshire, England.  Joseph Dolliver, the immigrant, was a son of Robert, of Stoke Abbott, Dorset.  He was early in Salem, Massachusetts, where he was constable, 1648, but later removed to Marblehead.

The Mount Desert pioneer was Peter Dolliver, Revolutionary War soldier, who married at Marblehead Margaret Stanley, first child of John and Marguerite La Croix Stanley, pioneers of Little Cranberry.

Her paternal grandmother was Hannah Newman, daughter of Joseph, of Gouldsboro, whose immigrant ancestor, Thomas Newman, came to America from Bristol, England, in the Mary and John, 1634.

Nettie Augusta Stanley was for more than a quarter of a century postmistress of Cranberry Isle.  Cordial, courteous, and sympathetic; a veritable tower of strength to those in trouble, she made and kept innumerable friends; she was long a member of the Congregational Church, faithful and untiring in her influence for what was good and righteous.

Give her the fruit of her hands and let her own works praise her at the gates.

LUCINDA GOTT STANLEY, born September 12, 1833, at Cranberry Isle; died October 25, 1925, at Cranberry Isle; daughter of Jonathan and Irene Ladd Stanley; granddaughter of John and Phebe Rich Stanley; great granddaughter of John and Marguerite La Croix Stanley; widow of Jonathan Stanley, son of "Skipper Tom" and Mary Lurvey Stanley, and brother of Mary Lurvey Bulger.

On her mother's side her line traces to Daniel and Ann Ladd who sailed from England for America in the Mary and John, 1633.  Her grandfather, Moses Ladd, first of the name at Mount Desert, served in the War of 1812, and died of disease at Plattsburg, New York, 1813, leaving a widow who was Sarah, daughter of Jacob and Hannah Boynton Lurvey.

Samuel, son of the immigrant, and ancestor of Lucinda Gott Stanley, served in the Colonial wars and met death at the hands of the Indians, 1698.

For more than ninety two years Lucinda Gott Stanley lived in the Town of Cranberry Isles -- and from 1856 until the time of her death on Great Cranberry -- the span of her long and useful life extending over practically the town's period of existence.

She spared not herself for others, and to her great heart she gathered little children bereft of parents, bestowing a home, with affection and love, upon those who were not to know the tender care of an own mother.

She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.

Thus exemplified by these more extended, though incomplete, records do the Cranberry Isles impressively preserve their pioneer identity.  Here, descendants of the earliest settlers still possess, through inheritance, the praiseworthy English and Colonial qualities.  Here, for generations, have they dwelt upon ancestral lands, gazed upon the same imposing scenes of natural grandeur, and done their part in the development of this portion of the State of Maine.

The women have made the home, faithfully performing the innumerable attendant tasks, looking well to the ways of the household, and eating not of the bread of idleness.

Of our people it has been written, and by him who loved Mount Desert -- whose spirit took flight but a few days since -- that their lives "contain the material and present the scene of normal human development through mingled joy and sorrow, labor and rest, adversity and success, through the tender loves of childhood, maturity and age."

The greatest legacy is that of a good name.  This is the bequest to Cranberry Isles from Charles Eaton Spurling, Hannah Gilley Bunker, Mary Lurvey Bulger, Nettie Augusta Stanley, and Lucinda Gott Stanley.

Return home___