Fun Facts

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The Hookers have their own brand of beer!

The Thomas Hooker Brewery A video about the brewery:

Ancestors to U.S. Presidents

Reverend Thomas Hooker and his sisters Dorothy and Anne were each an ancestor to an American President and there is reason to believe that Abraham Lincoln too was somehow a descendant of Thomas Hooker. There is another possibility too which I have not pursued which is from Sara Hooker, via her daughter Sarah Wilson and that woman’s chidren with Josia Torrey. Maybe some bright day….

Roberts, Gary Boyd; Ancestors of American Presidents. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009 published this graphic representation:

America’s first cook book

America’s first cook book was published in Hartford Connecticut in 1796. It featured ingredients/recipes unique to the new nation.

American Cookery is the first known cook book that brings together English cooking methods with American products. More specifically, it contains the first known printed recipes with the substitution of American maize (cornmeal) for English oats in otherwise English recipes. The recipe for Johnny Cake is believed to be the first printed version made with cornmeal. Both corn and oats are cereal grains. It also contains the first known printed recipe for turkey (which is native to North and Central America) with cranberries

Secondly, and probably most importantly, American Cookery is the first known printed American call for the use of a chemical leavening agent that was the precursor to modern baking powder, used to cause dough to rise in baking. At that time, it was known as potash, pearl ash, pearlash, or alkali….

The recipe for “Queen’s Cake” was pure social aspiration, in the British mode, with its butter whipped to a cream, pound of sugar, pound and a quarter of flour, 10 eggs, glass of wine, half-teacup of delicate-flavored rosewater, and spices. And “Plumb Cake” offered the striving housewife a huge 21-egg showstopper, full of expensive dried and candied fruit, nuts, spices, wine, and cream.

Then—mere pages away—sat johnnycake, federal pan cake, buckwheat cake, and Indian slapjack, made of familiar ingredients like cornmeal, flour, milk, water, and a bit of fat, and prepared “before the fire” or on a hot griddle. They symbolized the plain, but well-run and bountiful, American home. A dialogue on how to balance the sumptuous with the simple in American life had begun…”

The Life and Letters of Isabella Beecher Hooker, suffragist, sister of Harriet Beecher Stowe and friend of Mark Twain. John Hooker, husband of Isabella, wrote a tract in 1870 entitled The Bible and Woman Suffrage. His argument in a nutshell: “The opponents of Woman Suffrage draw an argument against it from the Bible. Many of them regard the position of the Bible as clearly and directly antagonistic to it and as alone decisive of the question. Many of the friends of the cause are embarrassed by the claim. I believe that it admits of demonstration, that the passages of Scripture relied upon by the opponents of Woman Suffrage, conceding all that they claim as to their meaning, and as to the permanency and universality of their application, have nothing to do with the question, and must be ruled out of the discussion for irrelevancy.”

John Hooker, husband of Isabella
Edith Houghton Hooker, Suffragist

Courtesy of the Library of Congress

More information about her and the Suffrage Movement can be found at the Library:

The Charter Oak

Do you know what the charter oak is? click on the triangle to find out

The hiding place for the charter granted by King Charles….

The Hooker family snake oil merchant

Dr. Hooker’s Cough and Croup Syrup 1908.

The indications or uses for this product as provided on its packaging:

For croup, coughs, colds, catarrh, whooping cough, hoarseness, and all diseases of the throat and lungs. Also for asthma and incipient consumption.

How about a Hooker apron?

There are a multitude of designs to choose from, but here is a sample:

Jingle Bells and the Hookers?

no direct line, but an indirect one via Mary Hooker Pierpont…

The song is naughtier than you might think. A relatively tame carol today, in its day Pierpont’s tune was the equivalent of a Beach Boy’s song about fast cars, pretty girls and sneaking off to be together in private. It might even be a drinking song, as Medford had a flourishing rum-making industry. Pierpont was also known to imbibe. Not to mention that a sleigh was one of the few places where a boy and girl could be alone and unsupervised.

The second verse is more risqué than the first, describing a boy and girl sleighing together behind the fastest horse they could find, with the lyric:

Now the ground is white

Go it while you’re young,

Take the girls to night

And sing this sleighing song;

James Lord Pierpont did more than write Jingle Bells! Read here AND he published a book of anti-slavery poems.

Charlton Heston plays Henry Hooker in the movie Tombstone

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