WILBUR N. HILLS

BIOGRAPHY

AS RECORDED IN:

COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD OF 
TOLLAND AND WINDHAM COUNTIES CONNECTICUT.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF PROMINENT AND REPRESENTATIVE  CITIZENS AND OF MANY OF THE EARLY SETTLED FAMILIES
PUBLISHER: J.H.BEERS & CO., CHICAGO; 1903     P.  1260

WILBUR N. HILLS,  an enterprising farmer of Gilead in the town of Hebron, Tolland county, was born Feb. 10, 1865, in Gilead, a son of George H. and Laura J. (Warren) Hills.

George H. Hills was born Aug. 24, 1835, in Gilead, and was reared upon the farm, working for the farmers in the vicinity as well as upon his father’s property.  Among the men by whom he was employed during his boyhood were Seth Dickinson and Leonard Hale, the latter residing on John Tom Hill, in the town of Glastonbury.  After he attained his majority, the father learned the trade of butchering, and worked in Gilead till 1870, when he went to Meriden, Conn., for three years; he then returned to Gilead and worked at his trade till 1876, when he moved to Manchester, Conn., working for about a year upon a farm.  About this time he returned to Gilead, where he now resides, engaged in farming and butchering, although the latter calling engages the greater portion of his time, as he is an expert in his line, and his skill is widely known.

On May 28, 1860, the marriage of George H. Hills occurred in East Hartford, Mrs. Hills being a daughter of Nathaniel and Sarah (Bidwell) Warren.  Of their children,  (1) Lucy E., born May 12, 1862, is the wife of Charles Milton, a machinist of Hartford, and has five children:  Raymond C., born April 14, 1886;  Retha E., Aug. 17, 1890;  Howard I., May 10, 1893;  Inez, Feb. 25, 1896;  Charles Leslie, March 3, 1900.  (2) Wilbur N.  (3) Ellen M., born Nov. 16, 1869, is wife of Carton B. Jones, of Hebron, a mechanic, and has four children:  Claude W., born June 17, 1894;  George Merle, Sept. 20, 1896;  Elsie M., Jan. 8, 1899;  Carlton H., Aug. 24, 1901.  (4) Merton W., born April 20, 1879, married Dec. 10, 1902, Vera B. Jones, born Oct. 6, 1879, daughter of Dan and Olive (Hoadley) Jones.

Wilbur N. Hills attended the common school in Meriden, Conn., during the residence of his parents there, and when they went to Gilead, he went to the district school of that locality until he was seventeen.  His summers were spent at farm work upon his father’s farm.  Remaining at home until he was twenty-one, he then engaged with William S. Ellis, of Gilead, for a year at farm work, but returned to his father’s farm and remained until his marriage.  At that time, 1890, he rented a small farm on Gilead street, which he farmed on a small scale, and also worked by the day, remaining there for two years.  The he rented the William H. Norton farm in the north part of Gilead and worked that farm, still continuing to hire out by the day.  In 1895, by hard work, he had accumulated sufficient to purchase his present farm, known as the Charles H. Brown place, a tract then consisting of 100 acres, but Mr. Hills has added to the original farm and now has a fine property of 140 acres, which he is constantly improving, and there carries on general farming, dairying and stock raising, and also deals extensively in grain and feed, this latter line having been established in 1897.  The house he occupies is a large, old-fashioned residence which was built previous to the Revolution, and the farm had been in the possession of the Brown family for many generations before it came into the hands of Mr. Hills.

Mr. Hills was married April 17, 1890, to Annie A. Post, born Aug. 28, 1868, a native of Hebron and daughter of Abel and Sarah A. (Rollo) Post.  The Post family is one of the oldest of Hebron.  One child has been born to Mr. And Mrs. Hills, Ethel L., Aug. 6, 1897, a bright, attractive little girl.

Like his father, Mr. Hills is a staunch Democrat, and has served on the board of assessors in 1895-96 and 1899; he has also served on the board of relief in 1898 and 1900.  He attends Gilead Congregational Church, of which he is a liberal supporter.

Mr. Hills descends on his mother’s side from Richard Warren, who came to America in the historic “Mayflower.”  The first Warren house stood in Silver Lane (in East Hartford), so called by the French soldiers, who encamped there at the time of the Revolutionary war, and who, it is said, stored their money in one of the rooms of the Warren house.  The first of the name to settle in East Hartford, where the family is numbered among the oldest, was William Warren, who married Mary Andrews, and settled in that locality in 1664.

Ashbel Warren, great-grandfather of Mr. Hills on the maternal side, married Penelope Pratt, whose mother’s name was Margaret Ely, and to them were born seven children:  Ashbel, who married Abigail Hayes;  William Ely, killed by lightning in 1804, when still a young man;  Harriet, married to a Mr. Camp;  Sarah, deceased unmarried;  Nathaniel, grandfather of Mr. Hills;  Frederick, who went South;  Margaret, who married James Colier.

Nathaniel Warren, the grandfather, was born Aug. 13, 1797, and Aug. 20, 1820, married Sarah Bidwell, who was born June 8, 1800.  By calling a farmer, he resided at the Warren homestead, Silver Lane, East Hartford, where he died May 13, 1877, and his widow died July 13, 1878.  To him and his wife were born:  Harriet F., Jan. 16, 1821, who married Watson Hayes, and lived in South Windsor;  Lucius H., March 20, 1823, who married Abby Miner, and was a resident of Milford at the time of his death;  William Ely, June 17, 1825, who married Louisa (Gillett) Hills, widow of Sherman Hills, and lived in East Hartford;  George Austin, Oct. 27, 1827, who married Almira Risley, was a successful farmer, and resided in East Hartford on the old homestead, where he died Sept. 6, 1898;  Emily A., July 5, 1830, who married Edwin Miner and lived in Gilead;  Leverett D., Dec. 12, 1832, who married Mary Wheeler and lived in Bridgeport;  Alfred Newton, Aug. 8, 1835, who married Ann Eliza Stowe, and lived in Dunlap, Iowa;  Laura Jane, April 21, 1838, mother of Mr. Hills;  Frederick R., Dec. 5, 1840, who married Amelia Milton, and lived in Silver Lane.

Mr. Hills is accounted one of the rising young men of the town and the success which has attended his lifework is certainly the result of his own efforts.  Commencing in life with nothing but his own willing hands, a brave heart and the ability to grasp opportunities whenever presented, he has added little by little to his possessions, until he is now in comfortable circumstances, and stands high in the community.  

Reproduced by:

Linda D. Pingel

 

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