Help reading a 1735 Boston newspaper

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Mon Feb 11 19:42:37 UTC 2013

I now agree with the "s".

But I still doubt Coos County.  1763, when
Haverhill NH was incorporated, is 30 years after
my newspaper.  And the word "incorporation" does
not mean there was a developed town.  It was only
after the end of the French and Indian War that
settlement that far north began.  In 1761 NH made
several grants of townships. 1763 is the date of
the charter of the Township of Haverhill, when 75
persons were granted shares.  The earliest
settlers were apparently in 1761.  [History of
Haverhill, N. H., by John Quincy Bittinger, pp. 35-38, 42-44. GBooks.]

Rather, as suggested to me elsewhere, my
speculation is the Greek Island "Coos" = "Kos",
as a place a doctor calling himself "Esculapius"
might pretend to write from, particularly when I
read (in Wikipedia) that in addition being
"famous for its sanatoria" it was where Hippocrates may have begun his career.


At 2/11/2013 01:18 PM, Nathaniel Sharpe wrote:
>Yes, I checked the page as well and agree that the last letter is most
>likely "s."
>The second letter is a bit more iffy, but closer to "o" than "e," in my
>As "Coos" seems the likeliest candidate, here's some more history on the
>name's connection with New Hampshire:
>A bit of geography; Coos (pronounced k´· oös) originally Cohos or
>Cohoes, and sometimes Coös---even Cowass---is now the name of the
>northernmost county in New Hampshire. Haverhill, incorporated in 1763,
>was the original county seat. Before the final county boundaries were
>drawn in 1803, the entire area along the Connecticut River, from
>Charlestown, or Fort #4---the first settlement in New Hampshire---in the
>south to an undefined area in the north was known as Coos.
>The earliest instance of Coos as a geographic location that I saw was
>from January 24, 1766 in the New-Hampshire Gazette (Portsmouth, NH),
>talking of "making a Road or High-way from Durham to Coos, in this
>On 2/10/2013 6:18 PM, John McChesney-Young wrote:
>>---------------------- Information from the
>>mail header -----------------------
>>Sender:       American Dialect Society<ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>Poster:       John McChesney-Young<jmccyoung at GMAIL.COM>
>>Subject:      Re: Help reading a 1735 Boston newspaper
>>Could it be "Coos," as in Coos County, New Hampshire? The word on that
>>page in the _Boston Gazette_ looks to me like either that or "Ceos";
>>the right side of the second letter is so faint it's not clear which,
>>but the last letter looks more like an "s" to me than a "t." See:
>>(_Gazetteer of the state of New-Hampshire_, 1817)
>>for Coos County's entry.
>>I see nothing promising in Massachusetts at:
>>On Sun, Feb 10, 2013 at 1:23 PM, Joel S. Berson<Berson at>  wrote:
>>>I ask for help from those with access to EAN in reading a dateline in
>>>the Boston Gazette of 1735 Oct. 6.  On page 4, col. 1, is the end of
>>>a letter signed and dated --
>>>????, -------- 1735                     ESCULAPIUS
>>>I am at a loss for the first four characters, which look a little
>>>like "Ceot" but might be otherwise; and therefore also for a possible
>>>meaning.  Normally, I would expect a place name, in this case in
>>>Massachusetts or (less likely, from the text
>>>of the letter) New Hampshire....
>>John McChesney-Young ** Berkeley, California, U.S.A.
>> **
>>The American Dialect Society -
>The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list