PUBLISHER: J.H.BEERS & CO., CHICAGO; 1903     P.  702

HENRY PALMER RIX, born Jan. 22, 1836, in Preston, New London Co., Conn., is one of the older and much esteemed citizens of Tolland and enjoys the respect his long and useful life so well merits.

Aaron Prentice Rix, father of Henry P., was born March 11, 1802, in Griswold, Conn., and died April 7, 1875, in Norwich.  On Nov. 16, 1824, he married Mary Stanton, who was born Nov. 7, 1804, daughter of Joseph Stanton.  Her death occurred Jan. 14, 1846, in North Stonington, Conn., and Mr. Rix subsequently married Mary Adams, of North Stonington.  They had no children.  To the first union came:  Mary A., born Aug. 16, 1827, who died Jan. 14, 1846;  James P., born June 29, 1829, who died in Rockville, where he had followed the machinist’s trade, and where his widow, Mrs. Martha (Kenney) Rix is still living;  Joseph A., born Aug. 5, 1831, who married Sarah Atchison, and is a farmer in the town of Salem, Conn.; Hannah J., born Sept. 25, 1833, who died Oct. 4, 1854;  Henry P.; Julia M., born May 22, 1838, who died May 5, 1856;  Albert S., born July 15, 1840, who married Helen Bruce, and died in Hartford, where he was engaged in the milk business;  Sarah E., born July 2, 1842, who died July 2, 1863.  The father of this family was a hard-working farmer.  In early life he was a sailor, but he soon returned to land, devoted himself to agriculture, and had a very successful career.  His home was in Norwich.  In politics he was a Democrat, but he never took much interest in the management of party affairs.  He took an active part in the work of the Methodist Church, of which he was a member.

James Rix, the grandfather of Henry Palmer, was born in Griswold, Conn., in what was known as “Rixtown,” and was a very successful farmer.  By an accident he broke his leg, and could not walk for many years before his death, which occurred when he was eighty-seven years old.  Mary Preston, his wife, was born in “Bean Hill,” in the town of Norwich, Conn., and was the mother of the following family:  James, Aaron P., Joel, Asa, Daniel, Hannah, and Sybil.

James Rix, the great-grandfather of Henry Palmer, is supposed to have been born in Griswold.  Two brothers of the name, according to the family traditions, came from Scotland at an early day, one settling in Griswold, Conn., and the other in Massachusetts, and from the first this family in Tolland is descended, though the ancestral line is not very definite.

Henry Palmer Rix was born in Preston, and at the age of three months, was taken by his parents to North Stonington, where the ensuing twelve years of his life were passed.  When he was twelve the family moved to Norwich, where they spent two years, and then located in Mansfield, where his school days ended under the instruction of John M. Turner.  When he was eighteen he left school, and spent two years at farming, when he entered the Rock mill at Rockville, to learn the trade of wool sorter under Hiram Fiske.  Mr. Rix spent the ensuing nine years in that mill, then he worked a year in the New England mill, and another in the American mill.  After this he became “boss sorter” of the three rooms of the E.N. Kellogg Company mill at Hartford, having under his direction seventy-five hands.  For three years this was his work, successfully done, and at the end of this time he retired to farm labors.

Mr. Rix bought the Daniel Chapman farm of a hundred acres in Tolland in 1868, and six years later built the pleasant home where he now resides.  It stands on the site of the “Chapman Hotel,” an important center of travel during the Revolution, and which was built in 1757 on the Rockville and Tolland Road.  In connection with his farming operations, Mr. Rix ran a dairy for twenty-four years, but is now selling the milk to the Vernon creamery, of which he was one of the original stockholders and incorporators.  Mr. and Mrs. Rix are both members of Tolland Grange, and attend the Union Congregational Church, of Rockville, of which Mrs. Rix is a member.  Mrs. Rix is also a member of the Woman'’ Relief Corps of Rockville.

Mr. Rix is a staunch Republican, has served on the board of selectmen for three years, and was assessor for a year.  He has served as grand juror, and in 1884 came within one vote of being elected Representative to the General Assembly, although the town is strongly Democratic.

Mr. Rix was married March 28, 1860, to Miss Lizzie Hale, who was born July 13, 1841, the daughter of Orrin Hale and his wife Sophia Fox, of Glastonbury, and to them were born the following children:  George Henry, born Feb. 12, 1861, who married Sadie Beckwith, and is a farmer and dairyman at Beaumont, Texas;  Charles Prentice, born Aug. 12, 1863, who married Annie Rogers, of Rockville, and is a salesman for a large coal firm in Newark, N.J.;  Frederick Stanton, born Aug. 11, 1865, who died Oct. 26, 1868;  Burt Hale, born Aug. 5, 1867, who married Martha Rogers, of Rockville, and is employed in Royce'’ laundry in Springfield, Mass., taking orders and collecting;  Ella Louisa, born Nov. 5, 1869, who died June 9, 1897, at the home of her parents;  Clara, born Jan. 12, 1872, who died May 3, 1872.

Mr. Rix is essentially a self-made man, and by hard work and unwearied industry has accumulated a very comfortable competence, and won for himself a most enviable standing in the world.  He is one of the most successful and prosperous farmers in Tolland, and as a man and a neighbor is greatly liked by the people of his own community.

Reproduced by:

Linda D. Pingel


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