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Addison Merchant (1816 - 1867)

Addison Merchant

Addison Merchant was the eighth child born to Epes and Sally (Thomas) Merchant. He was born on Dec. 24, 1816 and died on March 12, 1867 at the McLean Asylum after having suffered a severe head injury. This injury occurred when he was thrown or fell from a team while in the process of getting in (a wagon), striking his head and a short time later some sort of brain trouble began and he was taken to McLean.

On June 18, 1837 he married Catherine Marriott Plummer, who had been born in Blyfield in 1816. Catherine was the daughter of Nathaniel and Sarah (Higgins) Plummer of Blyfield. Sarah (Higgins) Plummer was originally from Maine. Catherine also had an older sister, Nancy Silloway Plummer who married Henry Merchant, one of Addison's older brothers, in ten years before Addison and Catherine were married.

Addison and Catherine had six children: Catherine Marriott Merchant (Nov. 29, 1838 - Aug. 1, 1894), Emma Clifford Merchant (Jan. 8, 1840 - Nov. 6, 1840), Fitz Henry Merchant (Jun. 12, 1843 - Aug. 16, 1856), Emma Clifford Merchant (Mar. 3, 1845 - Sep. 19, 1846), Ann Judson Merchant (Dec. 13, 1848 - Oct. 25, 1856) and Jesse Plummer Merchant (Jul. 19, 1851 - Nov. 24. 1852).

Most of Addison's adult life was spent in the business of "trader", according to some records. Unlike many of his other brothers and Merchant relatives, Addison never went fishing in his life. [as noted by George E. Merchant, the family historian] He began work as a clerk for his father at the firm of Epes Merchant & Son. This business sold a variety of goods and provisions -- those items needed to fit out a vessel. Epes Merchant and several of his sons also owned all or part of many vessels, and so they were part of that aspect of the fishing trade as well. That firm was ended at the death of Epes, Addison and his brothers Gorham and Samuel formed a new firm under the name of Addison Merchant & Company and continued in a similar line of business. This firm remained active, including sending out fishing vessels, until the death of Samuel (Gorham passed shortly after the new firm was formed) in 1860. At this point in time, it is noted that Addison retired from active business.

As described by family historian, George E. Merchant: "Addison Merchant was of slim build and with a natural feeble constitution."

From the House af Jabez -- Chronicles of the Merchant-Marchant Family by Frank R. Merchant

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