Joseph Dow's History of Hampton: Bride Hill Sawmills
Bride Hill Sawmills
Originally, the property of each mill was divided into eight shares; and this arrangement still holds with regard to the lower mill, the present shareholders being: Elias D. Elkins, three shares, George N. Batchelder, Mary C. Chase, Norman Marston, Ralph S. James and John A. Towle, each one share. The mill has been silent for two years; but is now about to undergo repairs, and be restored to its former activity.
In course of time, all the shares in the UPPER MILL came to be owned by two men, namely: John Dearborn, six shares, and Stacy Towle, two shares. Subsequently, Jonathan Philbrook, of North Hampton, owned all the shares; and of his heirs, Walter L. Drake bought the whole property in the fall of 1870, since which time this mill has been generally known as DRAKE'S MILL. Mr. Drake owns the adjoining pastures, and therefore has the right of flowage.
Little River Mills
Peter Johnson's Gristmill
This is very nearly the site of the present middle sawmill, owned by R. L. Moulton, and built over in 1855.
The Upper Sawmill
The town granted to the members of the company the benefit of the water-power and a suitable mill-yard, to be held by them, their heirs and assigns, so long as they maintained a mill there, and also guaranteed that no dam should be built between their mill and Peter Johnson's old grant. In consideration of this, the grantees agreed to give the town eight thousand feet of merchantable pine boards out of the first ten thousand feet that should be sawed, and to deliver the boards at the Meeting-house Green, on or before the last day of May, 1694.
The mill-privilege here granted -- where the upper sawmill on Little river stands -- has been occupied by a succession of sawmills from the date of the grant till the present time.
The mill has long been owned by Nathaniel B. Marston; but this year, 1892, he sold it to John F. French, fourth son of Rev. Jonathan French, D.C., more than fifty years pastor of the church at "North Hill." [North Hampton].
An Ancient Site, and the Present Lower Mills
John Smith's Mills
The fate of the proposed fulling-mill is not known.