Sheppard's second purchase: 1806

orris F. Sheppard’s Second Purchase In 1805 Abraham Wagener began to sell off his land in the northeast quarter of lot 37 in fairly big chunks. In 1806 he formally deeded the northernmost 20 acres east of Main Street to his cousin’s husband Morris F. Sheppard. Actually there is some verbal evidence that he gave Sheppard 10 acres as early as 1801 when he first arrived here from Pennsylvania, but there is no recorded deed to that effect. The picture to the right shows the extent of Sheppard’s property east of Main Street. It extended east all the way to the boundary of lot 37, about 400 feet east of modern Sheppard Street. Main Street was laid out in 1799, but that was all; the colored area of Sheppard’s property is laid over a sketch showing modern roads and lot lines. Sheppard built a double log house on this property and lived in one half and ran a tannery from the other half. The tannery, which a few years later became a fulling mill, was on the bank of Jacob’s Brook, and Sheppard made a lane down to it from Main Street that was later called Mill Street; the “back street” now Linden Street, was laid out in 1824 and called Second Street and then Jackson Street. Sheppard bought another parcel on the west side of Main Street and moved into a small frame house he built that was apparently painted yellow, as it was always called the Yellow House. He retained the tannery and the fulling mill that succeeded it until his death, but he sold off the Main Street frontage in a number of smaller parcels. These are shown in the map: parcel “A” in medium blue was commercial property for decades. Parcels “1,” “2” and “3” were all sold to William Babcock on the same day in 1814. The gap between 2 and 3 was sold to Mariah Sabin; it contained a log house that may have been Sheppard’s own. The other gap, between 1 and 2, was only 30 feet wide and was where the lane down to the mill cut through. The right of way is now only about 15 feet wide.

Morris F. Sheppard, who already owned the land west of Main Street and an acre or so on the east side, bought 20 acres to complete his purchase of all the land at the head of Main Street.

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Above: The western part of Sheppard's 20-acre purchase is overlaid on the above map of the northeast quarter of Lot 37, showing the frontage on Main Street. The eastern boundary was the same as the eastern boundary of the lot, over east of where Sheppard Street is now.

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