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The Town & the City: Lowell before and after The Civil War

Originally created to be a digital archive for Lowell documents from 1826 to 1861, this website has grown to cover many periods and events in Lowell's history.



Hannah Hanson marries Ward Witham


Hannah gives birth to first child, a daughter



Hannah gives birth to second child, a son


Ward, Hannah, and their two children move from Portland to Dover, Maine

Later Ward  moves to Boston by himself and stays for two years

Hannah hears that Ward started a new life as a single man



June 4
Rev. Enoch W. Freeman is installed as Pastor of the First Baptist Church in Lowell


Rev. Enoch W. Freeman chosen for School Committee at a Town Meeting in March (also chosen in 1830 and 1831)

Rev. Freeman edits "A Selection of Hymns: including a few originals, designed to aid the friends of Zion in their private and social worship," which includes seven hymns that he has written.


Hannnah moves to Boston without her children and works as a seamstress
Her children remain in Dover



Decree of divorce is granted and Hannah is awarded custody of three children

Hannah visits Lowell with George T. Kinney

Her brother tells her that her cousin, Reverend Enoch W. Freeman is there
She insists on seeing him



September 23
Marriage of Hannah [Hanson] to Rev. Enoch W. Freeman

Enoch and Hannah board at Mrs. Charlotte Butler's boarding house on Charles Street
Mrs. Butler was a widow and the mother of Benjamin F. Butler

Detail of 1840 map of Lowell
The First Baptist Church is #2 on the corner of Church and George Streets
Mrs. Butler's is on Charles Street, not identified


Rev. Freeman delivers a lecture before the Lowell Moral Lyceum - Social morality; or, The proper and improper use of the tongue
, which is also published
Death of Rev. Freeman’s father in Maine during a visit from Enoch and Hannah

September 22
Death of Enoch W. Freeman
There is some suspicions of poisoning, but the examination seems to have stopped and the death was listed as cholera morbus

Hannah remains in Lowell and runs a Dress-maker, millinery & dry goods shop at 63 Exchange Building Central street


Hannah leaves Lowell and goes to Boston.



April 25
The names of Hannah’s three children are changed from Witham to Freeman

November 26
Hannah marries George T. Kinney



August 8
Death of George T. Kinney

The case is heard before a Police Court, Coroner's Jury, and Grand Jury

c. August 17
Rev. Freeman's body in exhumed and examined in Lowell (the findings are not presented at the December trial)

Hannah was held in prison for four months awaiting trial

December 21
Trial of Mrs. Hannah Kinney begins

December 25

Hannah is found not guilty after the jury deliberates for three minutes


Hannah Kinney publishes her book


Ward Witham’s book published

c. !843

Hannah moves to New York City and lives there for 25 years


January 4
Hannah Freeman is admitted to the almshouse in New York City

June 18
Hannah Freeman dies in the almshouse in New York City

Newspaper articles in chronological order


September 30, 1834   Boston Traveler                           Marriage


July 17, 1835               Christian Watchman                   New Publications

September 25, 1835   Lowell Patriot                               Dr. Freeman obituary

September 29, 1835   Salem Gazette                             Death notice

October 9, 1835          Christian Watchman - 1              Circumstances of his death - 1

October 9, 1835          Christian Watchman - 2              Circumstances of his death - 2

October 9, 1835          Christian Watchman - 3              Circumstances of his death - 3


February 12, 1836       Christian Watchman                   committee to prepare a memoir


August 22, 1840          Boston Daily Times                     Singular and Suspicious Circumstances/Mysterious

August 28, 1840          Boston Traveler                           The Late Mr. Kinney

August 29, 1840          Springfield Republican                Terrible Suspicions

August 29, 1840          Gloucester Telegraph                   Singular and Suspicious Circumstances

September 1, 1840      Boston Traveler                           The Poisoning Case/Return of Mrs. Kinney

September 2, 1840      Boston Investigator                      Singular and Suspicious Circumstances

September 2, 1840     Boston Semi-weekly Advertiser  The Poisoning Case

Boston Semi-weekly Advertiser - September 2, 1840
(the findings were not presented at the December trial)

September 2, 1840     Gloucester Telegraph - 1              Mrs. Kinney - 1

September 2, 1840     Gloucester Telegraph - 2              Mrs. Kinney - 2

September 3, 1840     Boston Courier                              Return of Mrs. Kinney

September 4, 1840     Christian Watchman - 1              The Late Mr. Freeman - 1

September 4, 1840     Christian Watchman - 2              The Late Mr. Freeman - 2

September 5, 1840     Gloucester Telegraph                  Mrs. Kinney

September 5, 1840      Boston Statesman                       Police Court/Return of Mrs Kinney to Boston

September 5, 1840      Boston Statesman                      The Poisoning Case (From the Lowell Courier of Saturday)

September 9, 1840     Hampshire Gazette                     The Poisoning Case

September 11, 1840    Barre Gazette                             Mrs. Hannah Kinney

September 13, 1840   The Times Picayune                    The Poisoning Case

The Colonial Gazette (London), October 7, 1840

Sept. 22 & 24, 1840    A Model Pastor (excerpt)             A memoir - 1894

October 7, 1840          The Colonial Gazette (London)   Untitled - under “THE UNITED STATES”

November 24, 1840     Boston Traveler                          Mrs. Kinney

November 26, 1840    Boston Morning Post                  A pious and poetical prisoner (4th column)

December 22, 1840     Boston Traveler                         Capital Trial

December 22, 1840    Boston Morning Post                  Trial of Mrs. Hannah Kinney (cols. 5 & 6)

December 23, 1840    Boston Semi-weekly Advertiser Trial of Mrs. Kinney for the Murder of her Husband (cols. 1 - 6)

December 24, 1840    Commercial Advertiser                Trial of Mrs. Kinney

December 25, 1840     Boston Daily Times                     Trial of Mrs. H. Kinney (pt. 1)   

December 25, 1840     Boston Daily Times                     Trial of Mrs. H. Kinney (pt. 2)      

December 25, 1840     Boston Daily Times                     Trial of Mrs. H. Kinney (pt. 3)

December 26, 1840     Boston Daily Times                     Trial of Mrs. H. Kinney 

December 28, 1840    Am. & Comm. Daily Advertiser   Trial of Mrs. Kinney

December 28, 1840    The New York Herald                  Portrait of Mrs. McKinney of Boston

December 29, 1840    Portland Weekly Advertiser - 1    Mrs. Kinney's Trial - 1

December 29, 1840    Portland Weekly Advertiser - 2    Mrs. Kinney's Trial - 2

December 29, 1840     Boston Traveler                           Mrs. Kinney’s Trial  

December 31, 1840    Lincoln Telegraph                        Mrs. Kinney Acquitted


January 12, 1841         Boston Traveler                           Acquittal                                          

January 27, 1841         Boston Daily Times                     Mrs. Kinney’s Trial – Pamphlet

February 12, 1841       Boston Traveler                           Mr. Austin of Boston

July 12, 1841                Boston Daily Times                     Mrs. H. Kinney Wishing to Close

July 13, 1841                Boston Daily Times                      Advertisement


February 9, 1842        The Madisonian                             communication from the State Attorney General

April 15, 1842              Boston Daily Times                       H. Kinney Would Give Notice

May 18, 1842              Bangor Daily Whig and Courier      Just published

November 12, 1842    Boston Post                                     Mortgage Sale - Stock of Mrs. Hannah Kinnney

November 16, 1842    Boston Post                                     Mortgage Sale - Stock of Mrs. Hannah Kinnney

Gravesites &c.

Please note: The information including family members on the webpages contain inaccuracies an omissions and should not be used without verifications from primary sources and other documents.


Rev. Enoch Weston Freeman (1798 - 1835) -
Hannah's second husband

The Rev. Enoch W. Freeman was interred at the Lowell Cemetery in the Baptist Society Lot #’s 57-58-59 on Washington Avenue on May 9, 1871. The lot card indicates that he was a removal from another cemetery. His removal was not recorded by the City. 

An Obituary Record of Graduates of Colby University (Waterville College till 1866) from 1822 to 1870


Ward Witham (1802 - 1888) -


Clementine Dorcas Freeman Leach (1830 - 1904) -
The oldest child of Hannah and Ward Witham


George T. Kinney (1800 - 1840) -
Hannah's third husband


Elbridge Gerry Leach (1814 - 1898) -


Paulina Dorcas Hanson Leach (1818 - 1845) -
One of Hannah's younger sisters


Nathan Hanson (1778 - 1864) -
Hannah's father, died in Lowell at age 86


Dorcas True Hanson (1780 - 1828) -
Hannah's mother


Hannah Freeman (1805 - 1868)

Almshouse Ledger Collection - Certificates of Death Ledger

From Proceedings in the city of Lowell at the semi-centennial celebration of the incorporation of the town of Lowell, March 1st, 1876 (pages 129 - 130)


Almshouse Ledger Collection



Detail of page above