The Official Story
Chapter 7

Foster's creditors line up to collect

The court records suggest that Foster's creditors attempted to retrieve what he owed them.

In the Lincoln County Court records for 1788, there are records of a Boston merchant attempting to collect a sizeable debt from Foster. Henry Sewall kept tabs on the case in his diary. He records his correspondence with the Boston merchant's attorney, his attendance at the trial in Pownalborough, and his attendance at the appeal, which Foster lost. (Notice that Henry Sewall was in Pownalborough for other reasons, too. His defamation case with Foster was still brewing.)

Looking through the town's property deeds, we find records showing Isaac Foster sold some unimproved property in 1790 for 60 pounds. He'd acquired the same property a couple of years earlier for 200 pounds, but the town treasurer held a mortgage on the property. It seems Foster was being forced to hand over the land because he was unable to raise the funds required to pay off a 30 pound debt.

Martha's diary entries suggest that the local townsfolk were lining up to make their claims against Isaac Foster.

Foster haggles with the town
The evidence suggests that Foster began looking for another job.

Table of Contents

Walker v. Foster
Lincoln County Court of Common Pleas
June 6, 1788
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June 6, 1788 Page 219 (back)


heard & understood by the Court, they are of opinion that the Defts. plea is bad. It is therefore considered by said Court that the plt. recover possession of the premisses demanded and costs. The Defts. appealed from this Judgment to the next Supreme Judicial Court to be holden at Pownalborough within and for the County of Lincoln, and entered into recognizance with Sureties, as the Law directs, for prosecuting his appeal with Effect.






 Lewis Walker of Boston in the County of Suffolk, Baker, plt. vs. Isaac Foster of Hallowell in the County of Lincoln, Clerk, Deft. in a process of confession, in a plea of the case, for that the said Isaac on the fourth day of February, A.D. one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven, by his note of hand of that date, for value received at said Hallowell, promised one John Lear to pay him on his order, the sum of sixteen pounds nineteen shillings lawful money on demand, with Lawful interest till paid. And afterwards, viz on the same day the same sum and interest being unpaid the said John by his indorsement, on said note, with his own hand subscribed, at said Hallowell, ordered the contents of said note to be paid to the plt. for value