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Goodwin Farm on Bragdon's Ridge in Shapleigh

On beautiful, scenic, Bragdon’s Ridge lies one of the oldest farm homesteads in Shapleigh.  The research on the old deeds, relative to this farm was done by Mrs. Arthur Goodwin, wife of the present owner.  The “parcel of land” deeds, so-called, goes back to 1781.  The first mention of buildings there on, is in a deed dated 1836.  There must have been earlier buildings, but the old deeds are vague.  As near as can be determined, families of Bragdons lived here in the seventeen hundreds.  The farm originally ran to the shores of Mousam Lake.

In May 1881, Edmund Goodwin purchased the farm from Betsy Bragdon and Adeline Worster who were sisters, for $2,100.00.  The deed states 90 acres, more or less.

One deed was found where the property had been willed to the above sisters, by their father, Levi Bragdon in 1823.  Another deed was found from Seth Littlefield to Arthur Bradgon, Jr. dated 1782 or 1785.  It is possible that this is the first of the longline of Bragdons to live on the place.

Since the farm was purchased by Edmund Goodwin in 1881, the same family of Goodwins have lived there, generation after generation.

Catherine, Arthur Goodwin’s mother, who came here as a young bride, is now nearly 88 years of age, and she remembers when the ell part of the house was remodeled.  The house has no studs and the walls are of three inch planks, vertically placed.  The original kitchen had an open fireplace and old Dutch Oven.  The main part of the house still has the original fireplaces and the front door has the old wooden pegs in it.  The original barn burned and the barn now standing there was torn down and brought from the Marland Nason Place and then rebuilt.

Edmund Goodwin and his wife, Anna Parker Webber, great grand-parents of Arthur Edmund Goodwin, present owner of the Goodwin farm, owned and operated a shook mill and shop in Emery Mills.  He owned several other buildings and lived in a large house which has been torn down to make way for the present commercial structure “Ted’s Fried Clams.”  They had six children.  Roy, who had a daughter, Ina Goodwin of Springvale; Orren, who married Annie Merrill of Malden, MA; Eddie, John, who married Jennie Goodwin of Shapleigh – their son, Moses Goodwin, owned and operated a drug store in Sanford for many years; Celesti married Clarence Taylor of Springvale.  Orren and Annie Goodwin had eight children: Charles Edmund, Annie, Myra, George, Minnie, Nellie and Elmer (one boy, Elmer, died and the same name was given to the next infant son).

Charles Edmund, a farmer, married Catherine Smith of Sebago, ME and their children were Lillian, Blanche, Leon (now deceased), Edith, Arthur, Myra, Geneva and Annie.  The present owners of this property are Mr. & Mrs. Arthur Goodwin.  Mrs. Goodwin is the former Esther LaCross of Lebanon, ME.  They have one son, Norman, head of the Business Department in the Cherry Hill New Jersey High School.  He also heads the program for trainable retarded children of high school age.  There are two daughters, both licensed practical nurses, Mrs. Lois Greenleaf of Shapleigh, ME and Mrs. Janet Morrow of Melrose, MA.

~ I am deeply indebted to Mr. & Mrs. Arthur Goodwin for the above information given to me in 1970.  My sincere thanks.

~Della M. Welch~

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