Remembering Our Ancestors: John Case

John Case, our 10th and 11th great-grandfather in the Snyder line, immigrated to the New World in the first half of the 17th century.

John Case was born on 25 Jul 1616 Aylesham in the Dover District in England, that’s tomorrow 404 years ago.  We don’t know much about his childhood, but the Case family, father, mother and four sons, left Gravesend, England, bound for Boston on the ship Dorset, of the Winthrop fleet, in 1635, when John was 19 years old.  The father William (properly John William Richard) died en route in September of that year, but the rest of the family settled largely in what today is the area of Hartford, CT.

John married Sarah Spencer, whose family had been living in the colonies since the 1630s as well, around 1655, and in 1656 their first daughter Elisabeth was born.  Nine more children were to follow.  In the early years of their marriage, John, Sarah and their children lived in the settlement of Massacoe which had 13 permanent residents in 1669. People appeared to be have been hesitant to settle there in the first years.  John was appointed to the position of constable of the ‘plantation’, this being the first recorded civil office held by residents of the area.  John also appears to have been instrumental in the process of turning the settlement into a town of Connecticut, which happened on 12 May 1670 when the plantation was ordered to be called “Simmsbury“.  The boundaries at that time were Farmington on the south side and Windsor on the east side, with the extent of Simsbury running 10 miles north of Farmington and 10 miles west of Windsor.

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One can surely say the family were American pioneers, and it appears that for most of his life, John played an active role in the community life of his plantation / village / town.

Following Sarah’s death on 3 November 1691, John married Elizabeth Moore, the widow of Nathaniel Loomis, but they had no children together, Elizabeth already having had 14 children by her first husband.

John in turn died on 21 February 1704 in Simsbury and it is believed that he was buried next to Sarah in an unmarked grave on Simsbury Cemetery.

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Requiescat in Pace, Great-Grandpa John.  It’s hard to imagine what life must have been like for your family, setting out into the New World and losing the father before you even got there, and then going on to build a community where there had been uninhabitable wilderness before.  On your shoulders we stand, and we hope to live in such a way that you do not have to be ashamed of us.

Remembering Our Ancestors: John Phillips

The Phillips family had been in the New World for two generations already when John was born in 1776: The first Phillips of this line, James, immigrated during the first decade of the 18th century from Suffolk in England.

Did you spot it?  Did the dates ring a bell?  Our 5th and 6th great-grandfather John Phillips, whose great-great-granddaughter was our (great-)great-grandmother Goldie Fouts, was born during the Revolutionary War and died during the Civil War.  But let’s not jump ahead too far.

John Phillips was born in Hagerstown, Washington Co., Maryland on 26 June 1776, today 244 years ago, just eight days before the Declaration of Independence.  The town was called Elizabethtown at the time:  Jonathan Hager, a German immigrant, had bought 200 acres of land in the Great Appalachian Valley in 1739, called it Hager’s Fancy and named the town he founded there in 1762 after his wife Elizabeth.  In 1814, it was renamed Hagerstown, following popular use.

But by that time, John Phillips was not living in Hagerstown anymore.  We are not sure when he left the area, but records show that his parents already went west towards the Old Northwest, with little John and his siblings no doubt.

By the beginning of the 19th century, we find John marrying west of the Ohio River in Barnesville, today located in Belmont Co., Ohio.  Funnily enough, Barnesville was named after one James Barnes who happened to have been born in Maryland and was the first settler in the Barnesville area.  Go figure.

Regardless, John Phillips married Catherine McFarland, daughter of Irish immigrants, in Barnesville on 12 September 1809, at a time when warriors of Tecumseh’s Confederation, armed by the British, hoped to rid the territory of American settlers and increasingly raided their towns and farmsteads.  John, by then father of two and the third on the way, enlisted in the War of 1812 on 4 September 1812; the necessity to defend his homeland surely did not need to be impressed on him, but we do not know any particulars about his life as a soldier.  He survived the war, this much is sure, and the family stayed in Barnesville where six more children were born to John and Catherine.

John Phillips passed away in his 87th year on 9 June 1863, smack-dab in the middle of the American Civil War.  His life was indeed framed by armed conflicts on American soil.

Requiescat in Pace now, Great-Grandpa John.

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Remembering Our Ancestors: Mary Gardiner

Mary Conkling, daughter of Lion Gardiner and our 9th and 10th great-grandmother, passed away this week 293 years ago.

Mary Gardiner, our 9th and 10th great-grandmother in the Mulford line, was born on 30 August 1638 in Old Saybrook, CT, to Lion Gardiner, 1st Lord of the Manor on Gardiner’s Island, and his wife Marielven Willemson Deurcant, quite obviously of Dutch descent.

It is safe to assume that Mary and her two siblings, her older brother David and her younger sister Elisabeth, grew up on Gardiner’s Island.  Lion Gardiner purchased the island the year after Mary’s birth, in 1639, and gained the “right to possess the land forever” from the King of England.

Mary was named after her mother, whose Dutch name quite plainly translates to ‘Mary’, and we do not know much about her life until in 1658.  In that year Mary’s sister Elizabeth died (in February), and Mary married Jeremiah Conkling, most likely in East Hampton on Long Island, NY, where they then lived and raised their family.

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Their first child was a daughter and they named her Mary Gardiner Conkling, thus giving her her mother’s maiden name as a middle name.  This was not altogether uncommon, it seems:  It happened in the same way to Elizabeth Wise Speer and Sally Wise Felton in the Denney line of our family tree.  Mary Gardiner Conkling went on to marry into the Mulford line, and there you have three prominent names of the 17th century Suffolk County together: Gardiner, Conkling, Mulford.

Altogether, Jeremiah and Mary had five or six children, accounts vary, and they appear to have stayed in East Hampton where Jeremiah was an upstanding member of the community.  He passed on 16 years before Mary, in 1711, and she followed him on 15 June 1727 when she was 88.  She was laid to rest with Jeremiah in South End Cemetery in East Hampton.  The inscription on her tombstone reads:

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Here lyeth the body of Mary Conkling wife of Jeremiah Conkling who died June 15, 1727

Requiescat in Pace, Great-Grandma Conkling.  To have lived to the ripe old age of 88 in 17th and 18th century colonial America is quite the achievement!

 

Remembering Our Ancestors: Relief Howe

Relief Howe Everton was our 4th and 5th great-grandmother in the Denney line.

Our great-grandma Relief Howe was born on 10 October 1764, in Dover, New Hampshire.  Apparently, her family called her Leafy.  I must say that “Relief” is a very interesting first name.  Why might parents name their daughter “Relief”?  In this case, she was named after her own mother, but the question remains.  Whatever the reasons, however, Relief was to name one of her own daughters Relief as well, so it can rightly be said that this first name, much like Polly, Sally, Molly and other more common names of that time, runs in the family.

Relief and her three siblings grew up in the very north of this country, in the area of New Hampshire and later Maine, just when Colonial America was turning into an independent state:  The Declaration of Independence was signed when Relief was 11, going on 12 years old.  How much of what was going on did she see or realize, one has to wonder, and was her father involved at all?

One day before her 20th birthday, on 9 October 1784, Relief married Thomas Everton Sr. in Maine.  In the next 20 years, Thomas and Relief had ten children together (naming one of their daughters “Relief”, as mentioned), but they apparently left Maine around 1787 and lived in New York State for a while before settling in Rutland, Meigs Co., Ohio around the turn of the century.  Her husband Thomas was known in the community there as “Deacon Everton”: They belonged to the Regular Baptist Church in town, according to the “Pioneer History of Meigs Co, OH” by Stillman Carter Larkin.

Their third daughter, Jane Howe, born in 1790 in Oneida, NY, in time became Harvey Hamilton Lindsey‘s grandmother, who in turn was our great-grandfather (and 2nd great-grandfather) via Grandma Irene.

Relief Everton née Howe died this week 179 years ago, on 1 June 1841 at the  age of 76.  We assume that she lies buried in Rutland, but we have no record of her burial place, or that of her husband.

Rest well, Great-Grandma Relief, wherever they laid you to rest.

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Remembering Our Ancestors: Susanna Trevilian and Eunice Porter

Our 10th and 11th (and 11th and 12th) great-grandmothers Chidester both died around the same date, albeit a quarter of a century apart.

James H. Chichester, born in England and present in the New World as early as 1643, lost his mother Susanna as well as his wife Eunice in this third week of May, the former in 1636, the latter in 1661.

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Susanna Trevilian, our 11th and 12th great-grandmother in the Snyder line, was born on in 1585 in Somerset, England.  William Chichester, our 11th and 12th great-grandfather, was her second husband:  With her first husband Richard Carpenter, she had already had more than 10 children.  But our direct ancestor was among the sons of William, whom she married after her first husband had died.  Susanna’s mother was a Chichester by birth.  It can be therefore assumed, that William was one of Susanna’s cousins, but more research is necessary to confirm this assumption.  Susanna died on 20 May 1636 in Widworthy, Devon, at the age of 51.

After Susanna’s death, her sons William Jr. and James Chichester, who was nine years younger than his brother, apparently set sail in their own boat for the New World.  Both men were seafarers, it is said, and both lived in the Puritan community in Massachusetts, more precisely in Salem, for a while.  There, James met and married Eunice Porter, daughter of Jonathan Porter who had immigrated to Massachusetts from England before 1632.  Eunice was born in 1621, presumably still in England, and married James H. Chichester in 1643 in Salem.

It appears that Eunice and James, although Puritans when they arrived in the New World, joined the Quakers eventually and thus moved away from Salem to settle in Huntington, NY, although they had little to do with and apparently little love for the Dutch there.  Eunice died on 21 May 1661, one day and 25 years after her mother-in-law, in Huntington at the age of 40.  Through their son David, our line goes straight to Sarah Chidester, who married Abraham Snyder Sr. on 10 June 1797.

Requiescat in Pace, dear Great-Grandmothers Chichester.

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Remembering Our Ancestors: Elizabeth and Nathaniel Kellogg

Our 9th (and 10th) great-grandparents appear to have both died on April Fool’s Day, and it’s not a joke!

What happened on 1 April 1762 in East Windsor, CT?  This is one of the mysteries in our family tree, the kind that hobby genealogists know only too well.  The records indicate that our 9th (and 10th) great-grandparents in the Andrews-line, Nathaniel Kellogg and his wife Elizabeth Williams, died both on the same day, so the question is, what happened to them on that day?  We have not been able to find out thus far.

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Elizabeth Williams was born on 13 February 1703, and her later husband Nathaniel Kellogg shortly thereafter on 8 May 1703, both in Colchester, CT, a little speck of a place that only four years previously had been named so, after the port city of Colchester in Essex, England.  In the year of Nathaniel and Elizabeth’s birth, it was ruled that the settlement could organize a church body there, and within a few years, several grist mills and saw mills were built to provide grain and lumber for the settlement.  In 1706, the first street was laid and called Town Street.  By 1714, there were nearly 50 English colonial families in town, among them our Kellogg’s and Williams’ ancestors.

Nathaniel and Elizabeth got married on 1 July 1725 in Colchester, just before Elizabeth’s mother Elizabeth Weeks, wife of Charles Williams, died.  The couple had eight children altogether, their daughter Delight, who married Lt. Robert Andrews, being our 8th (and 9th) great-grandmother.

The family lived in Colchester, CT for many years, but shortly before Nathaniel and Elizabeth died, they moved to East Windsor, CT, possibly with Delight and Robert who were living there by 1756.  Robert’s family was one of the founding families of Hartford, CT and among the first settlers in Windsor as well.

As mentioned, both Nathaniel and Elizabeth died on 1 April 1762, in Windsor, Connecticut.  She was already 59 by that time, and he was still 58.

Requiescat in Pace, Great-Grandparents Kellogg.  Maybe it is for the best that we do not know how you died.

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Remembering Our Ancestors: Margaret Ann George

People endure much in life.  Let us not forget them and their stories.

When Margaret Ann George was born on 16 May 1760 in Bedford, PA, little did she know that by the age of 16, her colony would become an independent country in its own right.

On 5 June 1778, she married Lt. John George Longstreth in Bedford, who had been a soldier when they married, and who continued to be a soldier off and on.  They had 11 children between 1778 and 1800, and their great-granddaughter Rebecca married William David Christman, our maternal 2nd (and 3rd) great-grandfather.  Margaret passed away this week 183 years ago, on 18 February 1837, in Deavertown, Ohio at the age of 76 years, and was buried there.

margaret Longstreth 1837 new marker
This marker was erected by family members of Margaret and John Longstreth across the street from Christ Church Cemetery where Margaret lies buried.  John was buried, it is believed, in Green County, PA.

The family lived in Bedford, PA, so how can it be that Margaret ends up being buried in Morgan Township, Ohio, while John rests in Green County, PA?

There are two versions of the story of John and Margaret going around.  Their common denominator is that John, being a soldier, eventually stayed away from home for an unusually long time.  Apparently, he left in 1800 and was neither seen nor heard of for 17 years, and rumors reached Margaret that he was dead.

According to one version of the story, when other Longstreth family members moved to Ohio around 1820, Margaret and her children, thinking John dead and gone, went with them.  John, not at all dead, eventually returned home only to find his wife and children gone and nobody knew where they went, so John stayed in the Bedford area and died there in 1834.

The other version of the story says that Margaret, thinking her husband had died, married again (although we have found no record of this anywhere).  When John, after enduring many hardships and looking much like a tramp, returned home and asked for some food and a bed for the night, it was refused.  When he made himself known by asking for an apple from one of the trees he had planted with his own hands almost 20 years previously, Margaret recognized him and asked him to stay, but he did not, seeing how she had a new life now and not wishing to be in her way.  He left, and died a lonely old man in 1834.

The second common thing of the two stories is, obviously, that in either case John lived alone for the last years of his life and died at the age of 83.

Wherever the truth lies in these stories, in one or the other or some place in between, it appears their relationship was somewhat tragic towards the end.  People endure much in life.  Let us not forget them, their joys and their sorrows, and their stories.

Requiescat in Pace, Margaret and John.  We hope you found each other again on the other side.

** The featured image shows Margret’s original sandstone grave marker.  As can be seen, it is quite hard to determine what it once said. **

Lt. John Longstreth
Lt. John Longstreth (1751–1834)

 

Remembering Our Ancestors: William Southard

Our 11th (and 12th) great-grandfather William Southard immigrated from England to the colonies some time before 1640.

Today we remember an ancestor who died this past Monday 305 years ago in Virginia.

William Southard, father-in-law of the first Denny in our direct paternal line to settle in the Colonies, was born in February 1619 in Kirkham, Lancashire, England, where he was baptized on 20 February of that same year.  Some sources say he was born in Leyden in the Netherlands, but that seems rather unlikely, given that his baptism is recorded in the parish records of Lancashire, although William did move to Leyden at some point before he turned 20.

His parents never crossed the Atlantic Ocean:  William’s mother Margareth Lyvesey (a prominent Lancashire last name) died in England around 1624, and his father Thomas passed on in 1640 in Leyden in the Netherlands when William was 21 and possibly already married.  It is conceivable that he and his father both planned to go to the colonies from the Netherlands as many did back in the day, but his father did not actually make the journey.  William’s daughter Mary was born in the Colonies in 1642.  Who William’s first wife was, we have not been able to find out, but we do know that he married again later in life when he was already 69 years old.  His bride then was Margaret Lewis, and they got married in Christchurch, Virginia on 17 April 1688.

William was blessed with a long life.  His son-in-law Samuel Denny, also an English immigrant whom his daughter had married around 1660, had already passed on in 1710, his grandson David Denny was already 50 years old, and his daughter Mary would die only two years after him:  William lived to be 95, and died on 6 January 1715 in Christchurch, Virginia.

It takes a sturdy condition to live that long even under altogether favorable living conditions, and one can imagine that the 17th century did not exactly offer those, especially not for colonists.

Rest in Peace, Great-Grandpa Southard.

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Remembering Our Ancestors: Robert Loveland

The Lovelands are another early American family of Hartford, CT that belongs to our family tree.

Today, we remember our 9th (and 10th) great-grandfather Robert Loveland who passed away on this day 251 years ago, in 1768.

Robert Loveland, son of the English immigrant Thomas Loveland, was born in Wethersfield, Hartford Co., CT in 1673.  Thomas Loveland had immigrated with his parents, his two brothers and one sister in 1639 at the age of 4, but his father died at sea, wherefore his mother was known in the New World as the Widow Loveland.

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This is the church that is believed to be the church that the original Lovelands attended. The name of the area is called Farmington, but the names were changed often. The town of Farmington was once a part of Hartford. The First Church of Christ in Farmington has a long and distinguished history that began in 1652.

So Robert Loveland, first-generation American born, grew up in the area around Hartford and on 19 Aug 1697, he married Ruth Kilham in Glastonbury, CT, which is also where his father Thomas was living at that time.  Eventually, the Loveland family settled a little further south-west, in Hebron, CT.

Robert and Ruth had five children together, John, ‘Little’ Ruth, Lot, Robert Jr. and Hannah. When ‘Little’ Ruth was grown up to be ‘Just’ Ruth, she went on to marry our 8th (and 9th) great-grandfather Elisha Andrews, and they were the parents of Lieutenant Robert Andrews who took part in the Battle of Lexington.  Robert Jr. appears to have built the first grist mill in Marlborough, Hartford Co., CT around 1750.

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John Warner Barber, South view of Hebron, CT., ca. 1836 – Connecticut Historical Society

Robert Loveland Sr. died on 6 December 1768 in Hebron, and we assume that he was laid to rest there.  One cannot be sure as times were unsettled in 1768, after all.

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Gay City State Park, Hebron: Ruins of Hebron’s industrial past can be found in Gay City State Park, which takes its name from the abandoned mill town that once stood within its boundaries.

Rest in Peace, Great-Grandpa Loveland.

 

Thanksgiving Proclamation, 3 October 1789

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor…

 

Thanksgiving Proclamation

[New York, 3 October 1789]

By the President of the United States of America. a Proclamation.

Whereas it is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore his protection and favor—and whereas both Houses of Congress have by their joint Committee requested me “to recommend to the People of the United States a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many signal favors of Almighty God especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness.”

Now therefore I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be—That we may then all unite in rendering unto him our sincere and humble thanks—for his kind care and protection of the People of this Country previous to their becoming a Nation—for the signal and manifold mercies, and the favorable interpositions of his Providence which we experienced in the course and conclusion of the late war—for the great degree of tranquillity, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed—for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national One now lately instituted—for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.

And also that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech him to pardon our national and other transgressions—to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually—to render our national government a blessing to all the people, by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed—to protect and guide all Sovereigns and Nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us) and to bless them with good government, peace, and concord—To promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue, and the encrease of science among them and us—and generally to grant unto all Mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as he alone knows to be best.

Given under my hand at the City of New-York the third day of October in the year of our Lord 1789.

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