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John and Lydia’s Story: The Journey North

By Sarah Rooker on December 18, 2013 in Flow of History

Overview: In 1765 John and Lydia Mann set off from their home in Hebron, CT, to settle in Orford, NH. They traveled by horseback along the Connecticut River, stopping to rest along the way. This lesson provides students with a personal story of settlement.

Focusing Questions

How did the first settlers travel to their new land?

Topical Understandings

Towns were chartered by the Governor.
Settlers to the the Upper Valley came from Connecticut.
There were no roads and people traveled by horseback along narrow paths.

Background Information

Who settled here and how did they live?


John Mann Account for 4th or 7th grade; 1 – 5
4th grade version
7th grade version
Students’ Abenaki Homeland/Colonization maps
Visualizing the Story graphic organizer


Paragraph 1: Family Migration
hand drawn map

  1. Read the first paragraph of Joel Mann’s family story.
  2. As a class, create a family tree to diagram the Mann family over time. Use a different color for each generation and write in the dates when you know them).
  3. Hand out to each student their Abenaki Homeland/Colonization maps. Trace the Mann family’s migration from Plimoth to Hebron, CT, up the Connecticut River to Orford. Mark each location.
  4. Discussion: How does the Mann family story match what you have already learned about colonization?


Try the online activity

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