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David Morse (1826-1859)

Updated: Aug 22, 2021

David Morse was born in 1826 in Walpole, the third child of David Morse (1787-1852) and Nancy Gay Morse (1787-1849). His father, David, was the proprietor of the then well-known tavern, store, and post office in East Walpole. In 1848, at the age of 22, David married Sarah Sumner (1826-1849), the 21-year-old daughter of Moses and Catharine Gay Sumner. Sarah Sumner Morse died the following year on November 11, 1849. In November, 1852, David married Mercy M. Bates, the daughter of Capt. Thomas Bates, of Kingston, Plymouth, Massachusetts.

In 1853, Morse purchased land on Walpole Street from Samuel E. Pond and Isaiah Merrifield. David immediately sold half the land, including water rights to a spring on his property, to his brother, Anson.

Morse raised his house on Walpole Street in the fall of 1856. A year earlier, he had begun working at W. W. Everett & Company furniture makers. That business was owned in part by his brother-in-law, Willard Everett, who had married David’s older sister, Sarah Morse, on November 28, 1844.

W. W. Everett & Company furniture makers

David and Mercy Morse moved into their Walpole Street home on April 29, 1857. In November of that year, brother-in-law Willard Everett died of typhoid fever, leaving Sarah Morse Everett a widow at 35.

Two years later, on April 10, 1859, David Morse died of consumption at the age of 32. His funeral was well attended with a large contingent from the Sons of Temperance and many men from the Everett Mill. He was interred in Old Parish Cemetery along with his first wife, Sarah, in the Sumner family lot. Mercy Bates Morse, David’s widow, apparently returned to her father’s home; she remarried in May, 1866, to one Martin Sampson. Mercy Bates Morse Sampson died in 1898 in Boston.

According to family records, David Morse’s furniture and household goods were sold at auction. On May 3, 1859, Sarah Morse Everett moved into the house she had purchased from her brother, David, a few months before his death. Sarah Morse Everett lived in the home at 143 Walpole Street until her own death in 1916. At that time, Sarah, at 94, was the oldest person in town. She is interred in Highland Cemetery.

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