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 220

received of him; of which the said Isaac afterwards on the same day at said Hallowell had notice, and thereby became liable by Law to pay the same sum of Interest to the plt. according to the Tenor of the same Note, and accordingly, afterwards at said Hallowell on the same day, promised the plt. to pay him the same on demand; yet the said Isaac though often requested, has not paid the same sum or Interest, but neglects it. To the Damage &c. And the said Isaac by William Lithgow Junr. Esq. his Atty. comes and defends the force and injury, when and where &c. and for plea says he never promised in manner and form, the plt. declares, and thereof puts himself on the Country. And the said Lewis Walker doth the same likewise. Whereupon issue being joined the case after a full hearing was committed to a Jury sworn according to Law to try the same, who returned their Verdict therein upon oath, that is to say, they find the Deft. never promised. It is therefore Considered by said Court that the Deft. recover against the plt. Costs. The plaintiff 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 220