Obliged to Ask for Relief, the Journal of Cheshire County, New Hampshire Pauper Records from 1885-1900 - Milli S. Knudsen. From its beginning as a state, New Hampshire provided for the poor and unfortunate who resided in its towns. Individual towns had systems in place for dealing with the fate of indigent persons: support, punishment or removal. Major towns and cities had an official Overseer of the Poor who either resided at the poor farm or who arranged for the lodging and care of town paupers. County and city poor farms had been established throughout New Hampshire by the mid-1800s. In 1883, the state began to require a standard affidavit which covered the person's age, place of birth, the times and places of residence, plus times and places where support had been previously received.
This book presents a transcription of a clerk's notebook from Keene, New Hampshire, which recorded interviews held for those who came seeking assistance from Cheshire County between 1885 and 1900. Entries typically contain: applicant's name, present residence, age, place of birth, places lived, and sometimes the circumstances that led to the need to ask for help, the date of the application, and when the case was adjudged. Three indices augment the records: a subject index for frequently mentioned topics, a place name index, and a full name index. A woman may be listed twice in the full name index if both a maiden name and a married name are recorded.
2009, 5½x8½, paper, index, 410 pp.