The Portsmouth Historical Society website has a wonderful resource if you are trying to get a sense of what Portsmouth was like a hundred years ago. Scans of the town directory for 1916 and 1919 are located under the “Resources ” category. I looked to the directory to see who was listed as farmers a century ago. There were no house numbers in those days, but they do list some street information like “Middle Road by Jepson Lane.” There are certainly names listed in the directory that are familiar to us today. Their families are still among us. I will list these farmers from 1919 in blogs to follow and I will highlight some of the farmers’ stories that I have found.

George Hazard Albo: Braman’s Lane
William Albro: Milk producer, Braman’s Lane
Gaetanas Almeida – Jepson Lane
Edward Almy – Union at West Road
Henry Almy – (Almy Bros) farmer milk producer boards with William Almy
William Almy – (Almy Bros) poultry raiser and milk producer Union St. by East Main Road
Jacob Almy – Poultry dealer 27 Glen
Manuel Alvenas – Mill Road
Benjamin Anthony – Bradford Ave and West Main
Borden Anthony – East Main Rd and Town Hall
Charles Anthony – boards with William Anthony
George Anthony Jr. – East Main Road
Henry C. Anthony – market gardener – Park Avenue
Ralph Anthony – Dexter and Turnpike
William Anthony – E. Main Road

Anthony Seed Catalog

Henry Clay Anthony was a noted seed farmer. He was born in Portsmouth in 1852 and received a business education at Scholfield’s Commercial College in Providence. He made his home at “Elm Farm” on Park Avenue.

Agriculture was his family heritage, but he was scientific and practical as he aimed to create the best results in seed production. He was the largest seed grower in New England and he had large farms throughout the area – not just in Portsmouth. He had 800 acres of land in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. His seeds were in demand throughout the United States and Canada.

Anthony Seed Farm Field

Like many Portsmouth farmers, Henry Clay Anthony served the community in the State Assembly and on the Portsmouth Town Council.

Visit Denise Wilkey’s Pottery Shop on East Main Road to see some of Henry C. Anthony’s seed bins.