Issue Date: 11 July 2000
Transcribed from work by Dorothy (Campbell) Poole:
Dorothy Campbell Poole's maternal ancestry: The Rices of New
Dorothy's mother, Clara Edwina Rice, always called "Calla" was of New
England ancestry, her forebears being among the very earliest settlers
Edmund Rice (1594-1663) came to America from Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire,
in 1638/9 during the reign of Charles I and only eighteen years after
the "Mayflower" Pilgrims on Plymouth Rock. The name Rice being of Welsh
origin (Rhys), the family may have originated in Wales. Edmund was
accompanied by his wife, Thomasina and seven children and they settled
near Sudbury, Mass. He shared in three divisions of lend and lived at
the plantation lying near unto Concord (Sudbury} and dwelt on the East
side of the Sudbury River in the Southern part of what is now called
Weyland. His house stood beside a clear spring which still existed in
1850 and had become the annual Mecca of the Rice clan. His wife,
Thmomasina having died in 1654, he married a second time in 1655 a
widow, Mercy Brigham, but they had no children. In 1660 Edmund and
thirteen others petitioned and were authorised to form a new plantation
8 miles West of Sudbury which they called Marlboro: and Edmund removed
there to a lot of 50 acres on which he built his house. It stood in the
Westerly part of the town on the old country road to Northboro and in
the bend round the North side of the pond, a short distance above the
Old Williams Tavern. Here Edmund died May 3/1663 and was buried at
Sudbury. A few years later the settlement at Marlboro was attacked and
destroyed by the Indians, but was restored subsequently.
Henry Rice (1617-1710/11) was born in England and came with his father
to America at the age of 21/22. Four years later, he married in Sudbury
February 1/1643, Elizabeth Moore. Apparently they went back to England
soon afterwards and remained there for 17 years during which their
first seven children were born between 1646 and 1664. At the time of
his father's death they returned to America where three more daughters
were born between 1664 and 1670. Presently, very likely when the
Indians destroyed Marlboro) they transferred to Framlingham, 5 miles
South of Wayland where Henry died Feb.10/1710-11.
His wife Elizabeth had predeceased him in 1705.
Jonathan Rice, the eldest of Henry's only two sons, was born in England
and came back to America with his father as a boy of 10. when only 20,
he married Martha Eames on March 21/1674-5 but she died a year later in
childbirth. He next married Nov.1/1677 Rebecca Watson of Cambridge,
Mass, who bore him 2 sons and 3 daughters, all of whom reached maturity
and married. Rebecca died in Sudbury in 1689. Jonathan then married for
the third time, Feb.12/1690-1, Elizabeth Wheeler and removed to
Framilngham after 1705. She bore him 5 sons and 3 daughters between
1694 and 1713, all of whom, with one exception, grew up and married.
Jonathan died at Framlingham April 12 1725, in his 75th year.
Ezekiel Rice, Jonathan's third son, by his third wife, was born October
14/1700 and married January 23/1722-3, Hannah Whitney who within the
next 15 years bore him 7 sons and 2 daughters. After her death, no date
given, Ezekiel married three times more, in 1753, 1769 and 1772, but
had no other children. The date of his death is not recorded.
Richard Rice (1730-1793), fifth son of Ezekiel, was born October
20/1730 and married January 16/1755 Sarah Drury, born December 5/1734.
He died at Natick, close to Framlingham, June 24 1793, aged 62, and
after his death she removed to Union, Maine, 30 miles East of Augusta,
where she died March 28/1821, aged 86. They had one daughter, Martha,
and a son James.
James Rice (1758-1829) was born June 24/1758 and married June 1/1780
Sarah Perry of Natick, born October 25/1760, and moved to Union, Maine
about 1806, probably to link up with his mother, than 72. He died there
April 23/1829, aged 70. His wife died before him in 1823. Like his
father, he had 1 daughter and 1 son, Sarah and Nathan.
Nathan D. Rice (1784-?) was born August 29/1784, presumably at Natick,
Mass, and married February 10/1806 Deborah Bannister, born June 9/1786,
daughter of Major Barxillai Bannister (born 1750) and Deborah Cushman
Bannister of Framlingham. Probably accompanying his father in 1806,
Nathan and his young wife removed to Union, Maine, where after a hard
struggle in a new and cold country, he became one of the most
substantial farmers in that section of the state. His wife Deborah died
November 1/1843 and Nathan married again, May 5/1851 a widow Abby M.
Emery from Augusta, Maine. He was then 67 and they had no children. The
date of his death is not recorded. His first wife Deborah had born him
7 sons and 4 daughters, between 1806-1828:- Harriet, Albert F., Richard
D., Nathan F., James B., Sarah, Cyrus C., Elisha E., Lyman L., Eveline
and Ann, all of whom attained maturity and nearly all married.
Elisha E. Rice (1820-1885), 6th son of Nathan D.Rice, was born May
7/1820 at Union, Maine, and "resided for some time at Hallowell,
Maine", adjoining Augusta. He probably moved there around 1840 as on
June 2/1842, when only 22, he married Almira W. Sampson, born March
28/1814, of Winthrop, Maine, 10 miles West of Augusta.
She died February 12/1887, in New York. Their children were:-
George Edwin Rice, b.Aug.26/1843, d.March 17/1901 at Nagasaki, Japan.
Nathan E. Rice, b. April 27/1847, d. May 14/1900 at San Francisco.
Annie Rice, b.July 4/1852; d. Jan.11/1884 in Washington, D.C.
The U.S.Census of 1850 for Kennebec County enumerates all but Annie as
residents of Hallowell in 1850.
Elisha was a determined character. He studied law and became a
qualified barrister but never married. He was also a Colonel,
presumably of the Militia, and a Deputy Sheriff, as well as a
successful manufacturers of woolen carpets. An old book about
Hallowell contains an account of a Fourth of July celebration in which
"Colonel Elisha E. Rice was host at his big estate on his wide and well
kept lawns." An informative summary of his life is given in an obituary
in a Washington newspaper recording his death in that city on January
"Col. Elisha Rice died yesterday at his residence, No 941 K Street, of
heart disease, in the 65th year of his age. His funeral will take
place tomorrow afternoon at 2 o'clock. Col. Rice was born May 7th,
1820, at Union Maine. He carried on the business of manufacturing until
the year 1856, when he was appointed Consul at Hakodate, Japan, by
President Pierce and was reappointed under the administrations of
Presidents Buchanan, Lincoln, Johnson and Grant.
Mr. Townsend Harris of New York was sent to Japan to conclude a treaty
with that country and Col.Rice followed him as the representative of
the United Staten Government and was the first foreign official,
barring Mr.Harris, accredited to Japan. He studied law and was
admitted to the bar in his native state in 1845, but never practised
his profession. Col.Rice was in former years a member of the
Independent Order of Odd Fellows and was a Mason at his death.
He was a brother of the late Judge Rice of the Supreme Court of Maine
for more than sixteen years and who held the position of President
of the Maine Central Railroad and Vice President at the Northern
Pacific Railway. Col.Rice was a man of of commanding presence, being
more than 6ft. in height and well proportioned to his height. He was
well-known in Maine, California and here, having resided in this city
for eleven years. He leaves a widow and two sons. The elder is at
present Vice Consul General of the United States at Japan, and the
second son is a practising physician in Illinois."
His wife Almira outlived him by two years and it was probably she who
furnished the authentic information for this obituary. Their only
daughter Annie had died in Washington a year before her father, in her
32nd year, unmarried. She, too, was a physician.
Turning back to Col.Rice's appointment as Consul at Hakodate, Japan had
been closed to foreign intercourse for two hundred years. Commodore
Perry sailed into Tokyo Bay July 8/1853, made certain demands of the
Shogun and withdrew, returning with seven warships in March 1854, and
on March 31st concluded the Treaty of Kanagawa, which opened the ports
of Shimoda (at the tip of the Idzu Peninsula) and Hakodate (in the
Northern Island of Yezo, later called Hokkaido) to United States trade.
The Treaty was promulgated June 1855, and in August 1855 Townsend
Harris was appointed Consul General to Japan. He landed at Shimoda
some months later but was held up there on one pretext or another for a
couple of years before being allowed to proceed to Tokyo where he
arrived in June 1859. Col.Rice was similarly appointed Consul to
Hakodate and appears to have proceeded there in 1856, meeting with no
such obstacles as confronted Townsend Harris. Baron Takahashi Masuda,
recounting his memoirs in 1931, said: "At the age of ten, in 1857, I
went with my grandmother to Hakodate for my education. While there, I
remember seeing the first American Consul whose name was E.E.Rice. He
was a very tall gentleman." The Baron's family returned to Tokyo in
1860 where he became a young attendant at Zempukuji Temple wherein
Townsend Harris had been permitted to establish the first American
Legation in June, 1859.
The Rice family papers do not show when Elisha left Hallowell or
whether any of the family accompanied him to Japan his first trip; but
considering the age of his children and the unknown character of the
country he was bound for, it is likely that he went alone. Moreover, a
leaf from his son George's pocket diary reads:- March 8/1861, Mother
met Father in New York on his return from Japan. Plainly, she had not
been with him. A book published in 1858 about the Rice clan records
that Elisha "resided some time at Hallowell, Maine and removed to
Roxbury, Mass." (Roxbury was in Suffolk, now absorbed into Boston.)
It seems likely, therefore, that on leaving for Japan in 1856 he gave
up his manufacturing business in Hallowell and transferred the family
to Roxbury for the period of his first term in Hakodate, 1856-1861,
either for the sake of better educational facilities or to enjoy a less
rigorous climate than that of Maine.
A family group photograph, taken, apparently, in 1861, "before
going to Japan" shows Elisha to have been an impressive man with a
thick head of hair and a full beard and moustache, either very fair
or grey, tough he was only 41. In later photographs, his beard is
divided and white. His two boys, 18 and 14, were also well setup
for their age.
Another entry in George Rice's diary, penned in San Francisco, reads:
"A.W.R (Almira), E.E.R. (Elisha), and N.E.R. (Nathan) sailed for Japan
in the good ship "Ringleader" on 15th March 1862. March 27, arrived in
Honolulu and were received by the King and Queen, &c.&c. March 29,
sailed from Honolulu April 20, arrived Yokohama. A separate entry on
March 15 reads: "The ship sailed at one o'clock this morning. Bid
the folks good-bye and then got on board the tug-boat. A beautiful
night. We towed them eleven miles to sea. The Golden Gate a splendid
place. Got back to shore at 3.A.M." Obviously George was left behind in
San Francisco at 18 1/2. His diary for March 19th says: "Today closes
the fourth month I have been engaged in business. Like it better every
day." Other notes show he went riding and visiting friends, but missed
the family. From all the foregoing, it seems that between Elisha's
return to New York from Japan in March 1862 and the sailing from San
Francisco in March 1862, he had transplanted the family from New
England to San Francisco, and had resided there long enough to see His
son George through four months of his first job in a store.
Mrs.Rice, Nathan and Annie returned to America after an unknown period
in Hakodate, leaving Elisha at his post. In those days Hakodate was an
important haven for sealers and whalers of all nationalities and
consequently a rough spot. Only a handful of foreign merchants ever
settled there and it must have been rather bleak for the Rice family;
but the Consulate and Residence were staunchly built to withstand
Winter storms. Mrs. Rice and Annie (escorted by her son George and his
wife) returned to Hakodate in April, 1868, but there is no record of
In those days Consuls were not drawn from career officers in the
Foreign Service as they are now, but were appointed or confirmed by
each new Administration. That Col.Rice served throughout nearly five
Administrations is a tribute to the esteem in which he was held.
Towards the end of Grant's second term, Elisha returned to U.S.A. and
retired at No.941 K Street. Washington. This appears to have occurred
in 1874 since his obituary in 1885 states that he had lived 11 years
Washington. He brought his wife and daughter Annie with him, and the
latter, who seems to have been delicate and never married, died there
January 11/1884. How Elisha spent the last eleven years of his life in
Washington, we do not know, though at 54 he would still have been
active, if in good health. Possibly he was still retained by the State
Department. Two years after his death in 1885, his wife Almira died in
New York on February 12/1887, where she had gone to join a married
sister whose name (or that of her daughter Esther) was Blagdon. The
Sampsons were Quakers and Almira's sister always used "thee" and
"thou" in conversation.
George Edwin Rice (1843-1901), elder son of Col. Elisha E. Rice,
was born in Hallowell, Maine, August 26/1843, and lived there until
1856 when the family moved to Roxbury, now a part of Boston, for the
next 5 years. In 1861 his father transferred the family to San
Francisco where George went to work in a store at the age of l8, the
rest of the family going out to Japan. On April 18, 1868, he married
in San Francisco Clara Amelia Cummings, born May 14/1846 at (?) Canaan,
New Hampshire, daughter of Daniel G. Cummings (b.March 5/1812) and his
second wife Amelia Melvina Wallace, (born at Canaan, N.H. December
14/1820, died at San Francisco March 18/1868).
(Amelia Wallace was the daughter of James Wallace (born at Milford,
N.H. Oct.17/1766. Her brother, William Allen Wallace, was the father of
James Burns Wallace of Canaan, N.H., (b.Aug.14/1866) who was therefore
first cousin of George Rice's wife Dorothy's grandmother) and was
Dorothy's only surviving relative in America. He died in Canaan in
February, 1932. He was a graduate of Dartmouth, a practising lawyer,
Justice of the Canaan Courts and a State Senator. He compiled a
voluminous History of Canaan with the genealogies of its families for
fifty miles around; now an invaluable book of reference.) In 1889 he
married Alice Hutchinson but had no children, and late in life adopted
a son, naming him also James Wallace.
Daniel G. Cummings went to California in 1854. His wife Amelia
followed in 1855 with their daughter Clara Amelia, then nine years old.
She was 22 when she married George E. Rice and he 24. In a letter Clara
Amelia wrote to her Uncle Allen in Canaan from Hakodate, Japan, June
5/1886, she tells of her mother's death in San Francisco on March 18th
and added: "The young man to whom I was engaged (George) was obliged to
accompany his mother (Almira) and sister (Annie the latter in delicate
health, to Japan, and of course we were married at once very privately
and left Francisco April 18th for our voyage across the Pacific. We
reached our destination, Hakodate, May 26th, having enjoyed a
delightful trip." She makes no mention of Nathan having accompanied
them to Japan and since he was 21 years old, one may conclude he
remained in San Francisco to pursue his medical studies. We know
nothing more about Nathan beyond that in 1885 he was a practicing
physician in Illinois and died in San Francisco May 14/1900. He
married Lillian McKee (or McKay), and had one son, Malcolm McKee Rice.
On arrival in Hakodate, where his father was U.S Consul, George, a
powerfully built young man, was made Marshall of the Consulate, and he
and Amelia settled down there. They soon had 3 daughters:
Mabel and Lillian (twins) born December 22/1868*
Clara Edwina (called "Calla") born September 21/1871.
Calla believed that her mother took them back to San Francisco in
1872 and that they returned to Hakodate in 1873/4. After that neither
George nor his wife ever saw America again.
Not long after Elisha and his wife retired from Hakodate to Washington,
George Rice brought his family down from Hakodate to Tokyo. Calla
believed this was about 1877 as she recalls being six years old at the
time. They lived at first in Tsukiji, the foreign settlement in Tokyo
and George's wife taught English in the jo Gakko, the Government school
for girls. When this school was abolished, they moved down to Yokohama
and established their residence at No.107 Bluff. George E. Rice was
for 3 years Marshall of the U.S.Consulate at Yokohama and for 8 years
Vice Consul General. He then entered the field of commerce and tried
his hand, unsuccessfully, in two or three business houses in Yokohama,
finally taking a position with either Mitsui or Mitsu Bishi in Nagasaki
where he died not long afterwards on December l7/1901. He was buried in
the Bluff Cemetery in Yokohama beside his wife Amelia who had died a
year earlier, November 19/1900, when only 54. She is remembered as a
slender, handsome woman, with clean-cut features, a fine horsewoman and
an accomplished amateur actress. George Rice was thick-set, square
jawed, with dark hair and moustache and of a forbidding mein, probably
the result of his duties as Marshall.
Their three daughters grew up in Yokohama's pleasant social atmosphere,
learning to ride, enjoying swimming and yachting becoming excellent
tennis players and contributing much to entertainments with their
charming singing. They were not sent home to school, being content with
the simple educational facilities Yokohama possessed.
Mabel Amelia Rice, (twin sister of Lillian Almira) was born December
23/1868 in Hakodate, died October 3O/l952, in London. She married circa
1900 in Yokohama Henry W. Frazer of Inverness, Scotland, accountant of
the Hongkong & Shanghai Banking Corp. at Yokohama. He was presently
transferred to Hongkong and later appointed Manager in New York where
he contracted pneumonia and died July 27/1909. They had no children.
Following his death, Mabel went to his people in Inverness and later
joined her widowed sister Lillian in London. In 1915 she came back to
Yokohama on a visit to the Campbells, after which she decided to take
an apartment and remain there. When Yokohama was wiped out in the
terrible 1923 earthquake, in which she had a narrow escape, she
returned to London, rejoined her sister Lillian, and eventually died in
London October 30/1952 in her 84th year.
Lillian Almira Rice (twin sister of Mabel Amelia) was born December
23/1968 in Hakodate, died June 28/1945 in London. She married December
13/1888 in Yokohama Frank Gillett of Walthamstow, England,
b.Jan.13/1854, d.Dec.9/l900 in England. They resided in Yokohama where
their only child, Evelyn Frances, was born October 12/1889.In June,
1897, when homeward bound on leave in the P.& O. liner "Aden", they
encountered a furious storm in the Indian Ocean as they approached the
Red Sea, the ship was blown off course and piled up on the rocky island
of Socotra where she broke in half in the pounding seas, which swept
half the passengers and crew overboard. For nearly a week they endured
the storm's relentless attrition, the survivors being finally rescued
by a searching destroyer, along them the three Gilletts whose heroic
behaviour preserved their lives. He was ill at the tame and never
fully recovered from the effects of this experience, dying three years
later. Thereafter Lillian made London her home and only once returned
to Japan about l908/9 when she brought Evelyn to Yokohama for a few
months visit. Evelyn studied music in Berlin and Dresden but did not
make it her career. World War I brought her a personal tragedy and she
never subsequently married. After her mother's death in l945, she
continued to dwell in London but eventually bought a cottage in the
country near Storrington, Sussex, where she has lived quietly in frail
Clara Edwina Rice ("Calla"), (Dorothy Poole's mother).
was born September 21/1871, in Hakodate, died September 26/1959 in Ivy
Virginia. Her early childhood was spent in Hakodate, of which she
could recall very little; but from seven onwards she had a very happy
girlhood in Yokohama, enjoying to the full the active, care free life
of those days. She grew into a charming and accomplished lady and was
everybody's favorite. Her pure soprano voice brought her constantly
before the public on the concert and amateur theatrical stages, while
on the tennis courts she became almost unbeatable. In fact she played
on the Interport Ladies Tennis Team, whether in Yokohama, Kobe or
Hongkong, for fifty years, - from the time she was seventeen until she
was sixty seven! On the last occasion she had adamantly refused to play
but twenty four hours before the Kobe team was to leave for Yokohama,
one of the young players fell ill and Calla was drafted. Without any
preparation, she won two out of her four matches!
When she was eighteen she met William Wallace Campbell of Quebec, and
three years later they were married in Yokohama on November 30/1892, as
has already been narrated. She and "Willy-Wally" were always brimming
with wit and gaiety and became the best-loved couple up and down the
China Coast. Excelling in sports as they both did in their respective
fields, they had many devoted friend's both young and old. In fact,
they were young at heart all their days.
They had two children:-
Dorothy May Campbell, born at Yokohama May 18/1895, whose narrative
of her life appears earlier, and
Archibald Kenneth Campbell, born at Yokohama October 2/1896,
whose career has been described under the Campbells of Quebec.
In the years that followed, as already recorded, the Campbells moved
around between Yokohama, Hongkong and Kobe with occasional trips to
England, Canada and America, Calla taking especial pleasure in visiting
her mother's cousins, the James Burns Wallaces, in their homestead in
Canaan, New Hampshire, on the shores of Hart's Pond. "Uncle Burns" and
"Aunt Alice" long cherished the memory of her and the children. Calla
also made long stays in Guernsey when the children were there in school
and took part in everything. When her son Archie was wounded in World
War I, she sped home from Japan and stayed by him many months until
restored to full health. Her final years in Japan were spent with her
husband in Kobe, living first at Ashiya just to the East of Kobe on the
Inland Sea, then at Shioya Beach to the West of Kobe. It was at Shioya
that his health broke down early in 1938, compelling him to retire and
come to live with their daughter Dorothy and Chester Poole in Summit,
New Jersey, where "Willy Wally" died in September. Calla then spent a
year in London with her sisters Mabel and Lil, both widowed, but as
World War II grew worse, was induced to return to Summit, and lived
thereafter with Dorothy and Chester. Under the strains of the last few
years she slowly became afflicted with arthritis and shortly after the
family moved to Virginia, Calla fell, broke her leg near the hip and
never walked again. To one who had been so active it was a cruel fate.
Archie came over from Scotland to see her in 1950 and again in June
1959, and she finally faded away on September 26/1959, sweet and
uncomplaining to the end. She is buried in the graveyard of St.John the
Baptist Church near Ivy, at the foot of the Ragged Mountains.