Albanus D.Quint, the genial postmaster and merchant at Dewey, Washington, was born in Stark, Somerset County, Maine, October 4, 1849. His father, Joab Quint, born in Maine in 1807, was a farmer and carpenter. He was captain of a militia company in his native state in the early forties. His death occurred in 1851. Elizabeth (Thing) Quint, the mother was born in 1813, in Maine. She was the mother of five children, all of whom are dead but the one whose name heads this biography. Acquiring his education in the school of his native state, Albanus D. Quint then learned the carpenters trade. Before he was fifteen years old he enlisted in Company F, Fourteenth Maine Infantry, serving eighteen months in the Civil War, most of the time with General Sheridan in the Shenandoah valley. Returning home, he went to Wisconsin in 1868, where he worked in the woods and at his trade for nineteen years.
During his residence in Wisconsin he held numerous official positions, was town clerk for three years, justice of the peace three terms, chairman of the township board, and ex-officio county supervisor. Coming to Washington in 1887, he took up 40 acres of land at Deception, a pre-emption claim, and made it his home until 1896. He was offered ten thousand dollars for this property during the boom at Anacortes, but not having proved up on it, could not make the sale. He was appointed postmaster at Fidalgo City, formerly known as Deception, now named Dewey, in 1897, a position which he still holds. He owns and operates a store in connection with the post office. For nearly ten years he has been justice of the peace, and he has also been a member of the school board.
Mr. Quint was married in Wisconsin, September 19, 1873, to Mrs. Jane Hart, born in Scotland, April 11, 1847, the daughter of John Cameron. Mrs. Quint spent her childhood with her father in the West Indies, he being overseer of a large plantation. She was first married in Scotland and there her husband died. Four children were born to this union: Mrs. Frank Lampman, of Anacortes; Mrs. John Marshall of San Francisco; John Hart, a well-known business man of Anacortes; Mrs. Cora Iverson, of Fidalgo. Mr. and Mrs. Quint have two children: Mrs. Maud Grant of Astoria, Oregon, and Jesse Quint, of Seattle, recently married. Mr. Quint has always taken an active part in the affairs of the Democratic party. During his long residence here he had endeared himself to the community by reason of his manifold virtues and his unfailing kindness and courtesy. He has in his possession a relic of price-less value, of which the entire state is justly proud, a homespun flag.
"Perhaps not another flag in the United States possesses a more unique history than does the starry emblem owned by A. D. Quint, postmaster of Dewey. This flag dates back beyond 1790, in so far as the fabrics which compose it are concerned and how much usage the cloth it contains will stand is yet to be told by future generations. The blue part of the flag was made from hemp which was combed, spun, woven and worn by Mr. Quint's grandmother at her wedding in 1790. The red in the flag is wool which was dyed, carded, spun, woven and worn as an underskirt by Mr. Quint's mother at her wedding in 1833, and the white in the flag is cotton woven by Mr. Quint's sister in the first cotton mill established in the state of Massachusetts in 1851, and was worn by her before her death in 1853.
"These relics were made into an American flag by Mr. Quint's mother, and younger sister and was used to celebrate the 4th of July at West Mill, Maine, in 1861, and from under it six brothers and step-brothers enlisted in 1861 and fought until 1865 in the Ninth and Fourteenth Maine Infantry regiments. This flag flew at half-mast for the immortal Abraham Lincoln in the state of Maine. It flew at half-mast for the gallant Garfield in the state of Wisconsin, and was draped in its position over the postoffice for the beloved McKinley in the state of Washington.
"At Dewey, Washington, Mr. Quint's home, and at which place he is the efficient postmaster, this flag is incased and stands above the office fixtures fronting the door. In a maple burl frame on one side of the flag is a picture of Dewey, denoting at the name of the office, in the center is a maple burl frame with a map of Skagit county, denoting the county in which Dewey is located, and at the other end in a burl frame is the picture of Washington, making the display read, 'Dewey, Skagit County, Washington.' Mr. Quint has intended to send this unique display to the Louisiana Purchase Exposition at St. Louis, but owing to the failure of the county display he will not offer it to another county.
"The lumber which constructs the frame work which supports this display was sawed by the Deception saw-mill, the first in Skagit county, and the maple burls which serve as frames for the map and the pictures of Washington and Dewey, are native of Fidalgo island. The flag and the manner in which it is mounted would be an excellent exhibit and it is to be regretted that such a unique affair could not be taken to the exposition."
This story of Albanus D. Quint was received from Mrs. Betty J. Morgan of 1224 Belmont Ave., Vallejo, California in a letter dated October 23, 1972 to Mrs. Hazel K. Parsons. Mrs Morgan is the great granddaughter of Albanus and granddaughter of his son, Jesse Dudley Quint. A picture of the flag was taken by an aunt of hers in December, 1972. Mrs. Morgan sent a picture of the flag for the files. She states: "The flag it refers to is still in my family."
Send mail to Ray Parsons by clicking here.