Sunday, December 12, 2010

Alonzo Fairchild was the father of my grandfather, John Fairchild. My cousin Reuben was born the same day (many years later) and his middle name is Alonzo.
Alonzo Merritt Fairchild was a Carpenter. He was
born on 1 Apr 1861 at Sherman, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of
America. He appeared on the census of 1870 in the household of George
Joseph Fairchild and Mary Ann Stevens at Sherman, Fairfield,
Connecticut, United States of America. He appeared on the census of 1880
in the household of George Joseph Fairchild and Mary Ann Stevens
at Sherman, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America. He
lived between 1886 and 1887 at 80 Franklin St, Danbury, Fairfield,
Connecticut, United States of America. He married Elizabeth R Meeker, daughter of Edward Meeker and Ylida Yardner, either 8
May 1886 or 9 May 1886 at Patterson, Putnam, New York, United States of
America. He lived between 1888 and 1890 at 9 Starr Avenue, Danbury,
Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America. He declared
bankruptcy in 1898. Supposedly he served in the
Spanish-American War. There is no military record of this and he was living
in Bridgeport during this time period. He supposedly made a second marriage, but there is no record. He and Elizabeth R Meeker (2070) were divorced on 28 Jun 1905 at Bridgeport,Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America. He married Carrie Jane
Durgy, daughter of John J Durgy and Clarinda L Wildman,
on 29 Jul 1905 at Patterson, Putnam, New York, United States of America.
He and Carrie Jane Durgy appeared on the census of 1910 at New
Fairfield, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America. From the newspaper - New
Fairfield - The condition of Alonzo Fairchild, who has been ill of
pneumonia for the past week, is critical at the present writing on 5 Apr
1916 at New Fairfield, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America.
He died on 13 Apr 1916 at Middletown, Middlesex, Connecticut, United States
of America, at age 55. He died on 13 Apr 1916 at New Fairfield, Fairfield,
Connecticut, United States of America, at age 55.
Alonzo M. Fairchild, of New Fairfield, died at his home there about two
o'clock yesterday afternoon, following an illness of pneumonia. Mr.
Fairchild was born in Sherman, April 1, 1861. He is survived by his wife
and five children, Mrs. B.B. Segur, of New Milford, Eli K. Fairchild, of
Las Animas, Col.; Mrs. R.F.Baker, Danbury, George A. Fairchild, Bridgeport,
and John A. Fairchild, of New Fairfield. A step-daughter, Mrs. Frank Lee,
and a step-son, Morris Ballard, three brothers, William H. and Charles E.
Fairchild, of Danbury, John J. Fairchild, of Branchville and two sisters,
Mrs. John E. Sherman and Mrs. Joseph H. Hamilton, of Danbury, also survive.
Mr. Fairchild was a carpenter by trade and worked until his last sickness.
The funeral will be held at the late home, in New Fairfield, at one o'clock
Sunday afternoon. Interment will take place in New Fairfield on 14 Apr 1916
at Danbury Newstimes, Danbury, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of
America. Death Notices
Fairchild - In New Fairfield, April 13, Alonzo M. Fairchild, aged 55 years
and 13 days.
Funeral at the late home, in New Fairfield Sunday afternoon at one o'clock.
Interment in New Fairfield. He was buried on 17 Apr 1916 at Mountain View
Cemetery, New Fairfield, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving - Mayflower ancestors

Some of the Mayflower's passengers are ancestors of my husband or myself.
*my husband's father is a descendant of John Alden, William Mullins, his wife Alice and their daughter Priscilla who is also the wife of John Alden.
*my husband's mother is a descendant of Richard Warren, Edward Doty, and Captain Miles Standish
*my mother is a descendant of Captain Richard More (also known as the Mayflower Bastard)

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Witches in the Family

Many of the accused witches in Salem are ancestors through Allan's mother's family. Anne, wife of Andrew Foster, who died in Salem jail waiting for trial is a direct ancestor. Mary Clements, wife of John Osgood, was accused of witchcraft, but managed to outlast the frenzy. Elizabeth Jackson, wife of James Howe, is another direct ancestor through Connie's Howe line. She was hung on Jul 19, 1692 protesting her innocence. Her daughters received compensation in 1711.
Other relations who were accused include: Martha Allen, wife of Thomas Carrier and daughter of Andrew and Faith (Ingalls) Allen (direct ancestors of Connie), who was hung on Aug 19, 1692; Susannah North, wife of George Martin (direct ancestor of my mother), who was hung with Deborah Jackson Howe; Mary Perkins, wife of Thomas Bradbury and sister to ancestors of my father and Allan's mother, who was accused but not punished; and Martha Sprague, wife of Richard Friend and sister to another ancestor of Connie.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Richard de Clare, Strongbow

Richard de Clare, better known as Strongbow, was one of my father's ancestors.
Richard de Clare and Dermot MacMurrough, King of Leicester, Ireland, made an
agreement to take Dermot's daughter in marriage and later inherit the title
in return for helping to drive the Danes out of Leinster. He He was known
as Strongbow, 2nd Earl of Pembroke. He was often called Earl of Striguil,
Justiciar of Ireland. He was also known as Richard Fitz Gilbert.
He was buried at Holy Trinity Church, Dublin, Leinster, Ireland. He was
born circa 1130. Richard escorted the Princess Maud to the Continent
for her marriage to the Duke of Saxony in 1168. Richard sailed from
Milford Haven, landing near Waterford on 23 Aug 1170, capturing that place
and later marched on Dublin, the chief Danish stronghold, which also fell
on 23 Aug 1170. He After the death of Dermot he faced rebellion from the
Irish and the jealousy of Henry II of England. It was agreed he would do
homage to Henry II and accept Leinster in fee after 1 May 1171. He married
Eva MacMurrough, daughter of Dermot MacMurrough, circa 26
Aug 1171 at Waterford, Leinster, Ireland. He Joining the king in Normandy
he was granted custody of Ireland at Rouen in 1173. He He invaded Munster,
was forced back by the Irish, but did gain undisputed supremacy in Leinster
in 1174. He died on 20 Apr 1176 at Dublin, Leinster, Ireland.
Richard and Eva (or Aoife)'s daughter Isabel married William the Marshall. Thru Eva, the family line goes back to Brian Boru.

Rev Richard Mather

My mother is descended from Rev. Richard Mather thru his Taylor descendants (some of the original founders of Danbury)
from Wikipedia:
Mather was born in Lowton, in the parish of Winwick, Lancashire, England, of a family which was in reduced circumstances but entitled to bear a coat-of-arms.

He studied at Winwick grammar school, of which he was appointed a master in his fifteenth year, and left it in 1612 to become master of a newly established school at Toxteth Park, Liverpool. After a few months at Brasenose College, Oxford, he began in November 1618 to preach at Toxteth, and was ordained there, possibly only as deacon, early in 1619.

In August-November 1633 he was suspended for nonconformity in matters of ceremony; and in 1634 was again suspended by the visitors of Richard Neile, archbishop of York, who, hearing that he had never worn a surplice during the fifteen years of his ministry, refused to reinstate him and said that "it had been better for him that he had gotten seven bastards."

He had a great reputation as a preacher in and about Liverpool; but, advised by letters of John Cotton and Thomas Hooker, he was persuaded to join the company of pilgrims in May 1635 and embarked at Bristol for New England.

On June 3, 1635, Richard, wife Katherine, and children Samuel, Timothy, Nathaniel, and Joseph, all set sail for the New World aboard the ship James. As they approached New England, a hurricane struck and they were forced to ride it out just off the coast of modern-day Hampton, New Hampshire. According to the ship's log and the journal of Increase Mather, the following was recorded;

"At this moment,... their lives were given up for lost; but then, in an instant of time, God turned the wind about, which carried them from the rocks of death before their eyes. ...her sails rent in sunder, and split in pieces, as if they had been rotten ragges..."

They tried to stand down during the storm just outside the Isles of Shoals, but lost all three anchors, as no canvas or rope would hold, but on Aug 13, 1635, torn to pieces, and not one death, all one hundred plus passengers of the James managed to make it to Boston Harbor.

He arrived at Boston on August 15, 1635, in the midst of one of the most catastrophic hurricanes of the colonial era. He was the pastor of Dorchester until his death in 1669.

Monday, May 31, 2010

George Alonzo Fairchild

George Alonzo Fairchild (2608) was born circa 1895. He witnessed the
divorce of Alonzo Merritt Fairchild (689) and Elizabeth R Meeker (2070) on
28 Jun 1905 at Bridgeport, Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of
America. He appeared on the census of 1910 in the household of Alonzo
Merritt Fairchild (689) and Carrie Jane Durgy (690) at New Fairfield,
Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America. He, George Fairchild, son
of Alonzo Fairchild, has entered the United States navy and is at present
stationed at a training school near Newport on 31 Aug 1910. He was a
witness Alonzo M. Fairchild
Alonzo M. Fairchild, of New Fairfield, died at his home there about two
o'clock yesterday afternoon, following an illness of pneumonia. Mr.
Fairchild was born in Sherman, April 1, 1861. He is survived by his wife
and five children, Mrs. B.B. Segur, of New Milford, Eli K. Fairchild, of
Las Animas, Col.; Mrs. R.F.Baker, Danbury, George A. Fairchild, Bridgeport,
and John A. Fairchild, of New Fairfield. A step-daughter, Mrs. Frank Lee,
and a step-son, Morris Ballard, three brothers, William H. and Charles E.
Fairchild, of Danbury, John J. Fairchild, of Branchville and two sisters,
Mrs. John E. Sherman and Mrs. Joseph H. Hamilton, of Danbury, also survive.
Mr. Fairchild was a carpenter by trade and worked until his last sickness.
The funeral will be held at the late home, in New Fairfield, at one o'clock
Sunday afternoon. Interment will take place in New Fairfield with Alonzo
Merritt Fairchild (689) on 14 Apr 1916 at Danbury Newstimes, Danbury,
Fairfield, Connecticut, United States of America. He died on 20 Apr 1918.
He United States Army
In Memory Of
Private 1st Class George A. Fairchild Co E 102nd Infantry who was killed in
battle April 20th 1918. He bravely laid down his life for the cause of his
country. His name wll ever remain fresh in the hearts of his friends and
comrades. The record of his honorable service will be preserved in the
archives of the American Expeditionary Forces.
John J Pershing
Commander-in-chief on 20 Apr 1918. He Fairchild, George A.
64,571 White
RFD 20,
Danbury, Conn.
Ind NA Danbury, Conn. Sept 7/17. Br Bridgeport, Conn. 23 2/12 yrs. Co M 304
Inf to Sept 19/17; Co E 102 Inf to death. Pvt Sept 7/17; Pvt lcl Feb 1/18.
Chanegnow; Seicheprey. AEF Sept 22/17 to death. KIA Ar 20/18. Notified Mrs.
Alpheus B. Durgy, Aunt, RFD 6, Danbury, Conn on 20 Apr 1918. He was buried
at Cypress Hills National Cemetery, 625 Jamaica Avenue, Brooklyn, Kings,
New York, United States of America. He Geo. Fairchild First to Die
New Fairfield Man loses life in Battle on French Front

May 2, 1918 - George C. Fairchild of New Fairfield, one of the first
selective service men from this district to enter the army, was killed in
action on the western front of France, on April 20, 1918. A telegram from
the war department at Washington, received by his relatives in this city
last evening, brought first news of the young soldier's death.
Mr. Fairchild, who was a private in the 102d infantry, was the first man
from this exemption district to lose his life in battle. While not actually
a Danburian, a portion of his boyhood was spent in this city, and he had
many friends and acquaintances here.
George C. Fairchild was twenty four years old and was born in Bridgeport.
He came to Danbury with his parents when about ten years old and attended
New Street School. After the death of his mother his father re-married and
the family moved to New Fairfield. When he was seventeen years old he
joined the navy, serving an enlistment of four years, and receiving
honorable discharge. He is highly spoken of by his friends and
The message from the war department was addressed to Mrs. Alpheus Durgy a
sister of the young man's step-mother whom he had looked up as his guilding
hand. It was signed by M. C. Cain adjutant general and read as follows:
"Deeply regret to inform you that Private George Fairchild, infantry, is
officially reported as killed in action, April 20."
While there is no present means of obtaining further information in regard
to the death of Private George Fairchild, it is assumed that he was killed
in the vicinity of Seichepry, where the 102d is understood to have taken
part in a furious battle that Captain Locke of Hartford, commander of
Company M. of the same regiment whose death was reported on Wednesday, was
The 102d infantry is the former First Connecticut infantry, in which there
are several Danbury men and scores who have relatives or acquaintances
Private Fairchild went from this city to Camp Devens, at Ayer Mass. After
he was selected for service and with Cornelius J. Culhane and Arthur Crest
of this city, was transferred to New Haven with a detachment of men to
become members of the 102d. They started for Europe last fall but a mishap
to the boat on which they sailed made it necessary for them to return to
the port at which they embarked. They were sent to Fort Totten where they
remained two weeks, sailed for France at the expiration of that time.
During the time of his stay at Fort Totten Private Fairchild was given a
nine day leave of absence, which he spent at the home of his sister, Mrs.
R.F.Baker, of 37 Stevens St. of the city.
A brother of Private Fairchild, Eli K. Fairchild, has served eight years in
the navy and is now an instructor in the nautical school in Brooklyn. Mr.
Fairchild is also survived by two sisters, Mrs. Baker of this city and Mrs.
Benjamin Segur of Kent and a half brother, John Fairchild of New Fairfield.
Mrs. Joseph Hamilton of George St. and Mrs. John Sherman of 74 Balmforth
Ave. are the aunts of the young man. John Fairchild of Branchville and
William Fairchild of New Fairfield are uncles.
An interesting letter written by Private Fairchild to his sister, Mrs.
Baker, under the date of April 18 was received by the News yesterday before
news of the young man's death arrived and was prepared for publication
today. This letter which now has unusual interest was written only two days
before Private Fairchild's death.
Dated "Somewhere in France," the letter reads as follows:
"I am writing to let you know that I feel o.k. as well as the rest of the
boys who left Camp Ayers with me. That is, the Danbury boys, Connie Culhane
and Artur Cresci. We have been here almost six months and during that time
have seen some lively times.
"I have heard that in an article in the Danbury News they stated that the
Danbury boys were in a very heated argument with Fritz, mentioning the
names of Connie Culhane and others, but not Cresci and myself. Now I want
to say that we three have been together since leaving Ayer. Cresci and I
are in the same company, "Galloping" Company E. and Culhane is in Company
F. You can just bet that this war is not all gravy for the allies. But
before it is over, Heinie will have to turn over the whole of Germany to
the allies in payment for the damages he has done.
"But he still insists upon keeping us just so uneasy. We are in back of the
firing line, on reserve, after having done our third bit in the front
lines. Only last night just as we had nicely settled, Heinie had to start
in shelling us to disturb our slumber and believe me he came very near
doing so. But the old reliable American artillery just opened upon on him
and he shut up like a clam.
"I have not seen a Danbury newspaper since I have been here, so I do not
know very much about what is going on in the old Hat Town. When a fellow is
in the front line trench and he is expecting something to happen every
minute, no, every second, for it takes the short end of a second for the
fireworks to commence, he doesn't fee any too good.
"I am writing this in the Y.M.C.A. which is our only place of amusement. A
great deal of praise is due them for their good work but tobacco is our
greatest need at this stage of the game. Well, anyhow, I expect to see all
the folks once more very soon, perhaps a year and a half.
"Culhane, Cresci and myself would be tickled to death to receive the
Danbury News, even if you can only send the weekly. It can be sent to any
one of us and we can pass it around. You know on the 15th of March it will
be six months that we are in the world's war and we want to know something
about our home town.
"Will close now with love to all and my regards to good old Danbury. Also,
tell the Danbury people that her boys over here are among the best and I
will tell the kaiser that he had better watch out as there are more Danbury
boys coming.
"P.S. Watech the papers for news about the New England troops and you can
tell when we are in the fight" on 2 May 1918 at Danbury, Fairfield,
Connecticut, United States of America.

Memorial Day Remembrances

Here is a list of some of the relatives that have served in the military over the years with apologies for anyone I might have missed:
Vietnam war
Robert Fairchild (Uncle Bob)

Korean war
George Fairchild (Uncle George)

World War II
Ken Williams (my dad)
Lester Fairchild (Uncle Les)
Charles Williams (Uncle Cy)

World War I
Millard George Moors (Allan's grandfather)
Leroy Jones (my great uncle Roy)
George Alonzo Fairchild (KIA) my great uncle

Civil War (just direct ancestors from here on - many other siblings, etc)
William Henry Chellis (Allan's great grandfather)
Charles Henry Howe (Allan's great great grandfather)
James Merwin Beers (my 3rd great grandfather)
Levi Burdick (2nd great grandfather)

War of 1812
Heman Benedict (my line)
Capt Ira Sherman Betts (my line)
David Burdick (my line)
Capt Benjamin Fitts (Allan's line)

Revolutionary War
Gideon Chase (my line)
Timothy Way (my line)
James Bartram (my line)
Dudley Currier (Allan's line)
Lt John Benedict (my line)
Capt Benajah Benedict (my line)
Lt Nathan Fitts (Allan's line)
Major Jabez French (Allan's line)
Capt John Emerson (Allan's line)

French & Indian wars, Dutch wars, various expeditions
Lt. Philip Chellis
Capt Joseph Chadbourne
Henry Botsford
Lt James Bennett
James Way
Ephraim Beers
Abraham Fitts
Samuel Hills
Thomas Tibbals
Capt Nathaniel Seeley
Lt Robert Seeley
John Shaw
John Taylor jr
Ensign Thomas Taylor
Ensign Phineas Sprague
Sgt John Chadwick
Sgt John Hoyt
John Eaton
Aquila Chase
William Churchill
Capt Jonathan Samborne
William Ward M.D.
Jonathan Fanton
Joseph Conger
Josiah Heath
John Gould
John Brooks
Thomas Cheney
John Shaw
Ensign Francis Chickering
Capt Josiah Starr

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Captain Abiel Lovejoy 1731-1811

Captain Abiel Lovejoy (Allan's fifth greatgrandfather) -
His father died when he was about twenty years
old and Abiel and his brothers were left dependant entirely upon their own
resources. He had no "head start" in life.
Abiel is listed, as early as 1755, in the records of Massachusetts Colonial
Soldiers. He first appears as a sergeant on a muster roll of Captain
Goodwin's Company which had been "scouting eastward and guarding stores of
Fort Halifax." This roll was dated at Boston Dec. 27, 1755 and sworn to Dec
31, 1755 in Suffolk County, Boston. In 1756 he is listed twice as a
sentinel on "A Muster-roll of the Company in His Majesty's Service Under
the Command of Samuel Goodwin, Capt." But by 1758 Abiel is listed as a
captain. The muster roll of Colonel Nichols' regiment has the names of the
12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, and 17th men listed on this roll shown as
belonging to Captain Lovejoy's company. In August 1771 a "List of Officers
for the first Regiment of Militia in the County of Lincoln" has " Abiel
Lovejoy, captain" of the "2nd Company, in Pownalboro" It is therefore
evident he obtained his captains commission before 1758 and held it for at
least thirteen years in the Pownalborough company of the regiment assigned
to Lincoln County, then in the state of Massachusetts Bay, but now in the
state of Maine.
Just before his marriage in 1758 Abiel bought a negro slave called
"Boston". Abiel's wife, Mary, also received from her father as a wedding
present a young negress slave, who afterwards married Boston and who with
Boston formed part of many true stories and legends. Mary probably
accompanied her young husband on several cruises while he was still a ship
captain, sometimes to Annapolis Royal on the Bay of Fundy and other times
down the Coast and once or twice even to the West Indies. When in port they
lived at Nathaniel Brown's "Three Cranes Tavern" which stood on the spot
now a public park in Charlestown Square.
In 1760 Captain Abiel (then termed "mariner of Charlestown') purchased on
Sept 29 of "Ann Spaulding, spinster" thirty-five acres of land in the newly
incorporated town of Pownalborough, Me. formerly called "Frankfort
Plantation." Pownalborough was made the shire town in the new Lincoln
County which before 1760 had been the eastern part of York County. The
place was a frontier. Only one settlement Cobbisecontee (now Gardiner, Me.)
was above Pownalborough on the Kennebec and that was settled only a year
previous. In 1754 the entire country was unbroken wilderness between Fort
Richmond, opposite Pownalborough, and Canada. In that year Fort Western,
now Augusta, and Fort Halifax, now Winslow, Me, were built and occupied as
defences and protection from attacks by the Indians who, spurred on by the
French in Canada, were becoming more than usually hostile to the English
settlers. The hardships, privations and suffering of these pioneers can
never be fully understood by their descendants. Not until 1759 was the
outlook encouraging for them. The capture of Quebec that year from the
French by the Americans was the culmination of the fighting. There were no
luxuries of civilization and very few comforts. Most settlers were
extremely poor, lived in miserable huts, had no schools, no religious
organizations, no ministers, and no teachers.
It was to Lot # 11 on the east side of the Kennebec River on a peninsula
between Kennebec and Eastern Rivers and later within the limits of the town
of Dresden, Me, that Captain Abiel and Mary moved with their two young
children in 1761. He devoted himself to agriculture and mercantile
pursuits. In May, 1761, he was, by his majesty's court of General Session
for the County of Lincoln, admitted an inn holder and licensed to sell tea
and coffee. He bought more land along the Kennebec, and built a large house
which was furnished "in a sumptuous manner," richly and tastefully, with
the help of gifts from his father-in-law who was prospering with his
Charlestown tavern. Mary received from her father two more Negro slaves,
Salem and Venus, and Mary also had as housekeeper and companion, an English
woman, Elizabeth Millner.
In March 1762 he was made a selectman of Pownalborough as he continued
becoming a leading citizen of the community. He owned Swan Island in the
Kennebec, later the town of Perkins, Me., which when first discovered by
white men was the home of Sebenoa, the Indian Sachem. In 1763 he was termed
"merchant" but more frequently "gentleman." He operated a ferry across the
Kennebec and was regarded as the appropriate citizen to entertain those
gentleman travelers who desired accommodations. He was made a selectman
again in 1764 and acc. to Lincoln Co. records, was appointed guardian over
several children by the probate judge. On Nov. 12, 1764 Captain Abiel and
his father-in-law, Nathaniel Brown, purchased half of a saw mill and
adjoining land and a half interest in a dam on a small stream eight miles
above Fort Western. More and more Abiel began to buy large tracts of
neighborhood land and to take first mortgages on parcels. His interests
were many. He built a number of river ships which plied between
Pownalborough and along the river and coast to Boston. he marketed his
manufactured lumber in Boston. He owned several slaves and employed many
other laborers as farmers, mill men and saw-men. His house on Lovejoy
Landing, managed by his handsome, cultural wife, Mary, was widely known for
its genial hospitality. At the time of the Pownalborough census, June 19,
1766, he owned a two-story house with 152 squares of glass, one chimney,
three rooms with fire places, supported seven persons under sixteen years,
and ten persons above sixteen years and he owned one other house one story
high with 44 squares of glass and two fireplaces. The river near Lovejoy
Landing was termed Lovejoy's Narrows, a term still used. Early church
services in the town of Pownalborough were held at the Lovejoy mansion,
Rev. Jacob Bailey mentioning the fact in his diaries of 1772.
During 1776 Captain Abiel and Mary moved to Vassalborough, settling on the
west side of the river on the farm which, when it passed out of Lovejoy
hands some decades later, became owned by the Sherman family. They made
this move from Pownalborough up the river to Vassalborough by packing their
goods, etc. on flat boats and scows which were towed by row boats. One
boat, on which was packed all the Lovejoy "best furniture," was left for
the night tied up to the bank but a severe storm of wind and rain before
morning sank the boat and the furniture and valuable brocades were
irreparably damaged. Captain Abiel sold out all his Pownalborough property
to his father-in-law but proceeded to buy new tracts in Vassalborough.
The Vassalborough town records there show that Captain Abiel was on the
Committee of Safety and Correspondence in 1776; a highway surveyor in 1776
and again in 1777; a grand juryman; in 1779 on a committee to settle with
the women on account of supplies ordered to the soldiers families by the
General Court; in 1780 moderator of town meetings; in 1781 town treasurer;
in 1779-80 a selectman; in July 1779 a delegate to the Convention at
Concord; in 1781 a delegate to the county convention at Wiscasset; in 1782
town collector, and surveyor of lumber; in 1787 and 1790 a selectman, in
1790 member of committee to divide the town into districts. After Sidney
was set off from Vassalborough in 1792, Captain Abiel on May 7, 1792 was on
a committee to settle with Vassalborough regarding the township of Sidney;
in 1794 field driver, member of fish committee and collecting agent, also
on committee to build a pound, in 1798 member of school committee for
second district, also member of fish committee; in Sept 1777 he signed a
petition to the Honorable Council and House of Representatives of the State
of Massachusetts to abate the taxes of the inhabitants of Vassalborough. In
1777 he was one of three petitioners to the Massachusetts Government to
extend the postal service to Thomaston and he was one of a committee of
three authorized to agree with some suitable person to arrange for the
postal service. The records of the Court of Common Pleas show he was
plaintiff in a number of suits brought against men who owed him for goods
from his Pownalborough store.
In 1781 he was appointed Justice of the Peace for the first time and
solemnized a number of marriages thereafter. Henceforth he became known as
Esquire or Squire. He assisted in building another saw mill at
Vassalborough on the east side of the river and owned about 800 acres of
land on both sides.
Captain Abiel Lovejoy was accused in 1781-2 by a handful of Sidney
citizens, over whom he had probably triumphed in business and land
transactions, of being "inimical" to the government, and his election was
unsuccessfully contested. Captain Abiel had been elected year after year to
the Great and General Court of the State of Massachusetts Bay but in 1781 -
1782 these elections were contested by some of his townsmen on the grounds
that illegal votes were received, and also, that Lovejoy "was not friendly
to the cause of America." It was voted that the election of Abiel Lovejoy
was not proved to be illegal and a trial as to his character would be held
next session. Abial "settled" the affair with the principal petitioners, by
agreeing that "he would not attempt to sit in the honorable House again."
No further proceedings took place. It will be noted that he was clearly and
plainly elected and seated each of these years. The allegations were
evidently not regarded in the House as of any great importance and they
probably emanated from some business competitors or rival land owners.
Moreover, the war had been in progress for more than six years, since 1775,
and Captain Abiel, although an ex-soldier, might only have been expressing
his hopes for an early peace instead of being outright "inimical."
The true record throughout, shows him beyond question, to be a fiery
American patriot. In 1774 the Church of England people and their missionary
rector at Pownalborough were abused and annoyed by neighboring inhabitants
over the matter of continuing allegiance to the British crown. In a letter
in Oct. 1774, Rev. Jacob Bailey wrote of the "furious mobs" of American
patriots who at the instigation of Captain Abiel Lovejoy directed their
rage at several English loyalists including Parson Bailey because the
British sympathizers opposed the colonies.
In Sept 1775 Benedict Arnold's army passed up the Kennebec River on its
perilous and ill-fated expedition to Canada. Many Lovejoys are familiar
with the tradition that, when Arnold's soldiers were at Pownalborough,
Captain Abiel Lovejoy exchanged sums of "hard money" with a great number of
them for the Continental paper money which would be of no value as currency
when the soldiers reached Canada. He also changed a large sum of money for
Colonel Arnold and other officers and was induced to accommodate these
soldiers "first, because his patriotism was at flood tide at this period
and, secondly, by the fact that the paper money was variously discounted to
him." Two years later it required $30 in these Continental paper money
bills to equal one in "hard money" specie. It is, of course, an historical
fact that the provincial government was not able to redeem this currency
and the possessors were the losers. Captain Abiel Lovejoy lost some $30,000
this way and afterwards papered a room in the Lovejoy homestead with this
"worthless money."
On New Year's Day, 1776, Parson Bailey wrote that men and boys at
Pownalborough erected a liberty pole to express their defiance to the King
and affront the parson and that Captain Lovejoy tried to insist that Parson
Bailey, the British sympathizer, be forced to consecrate the pole by
prayer. Hence, ample evidence is found to refute the allegations that
Captain Abiel Lovejoy was "inimical".
The housekeeper-companion, Elizabeth Millner, died in 1784, leaving her
possessions for the most part to Captain Abiel and making him sole heir and
executor. To Abiel's children she bequeathed 13 pounds, to Nathaniel
Lovejoy, 40 pounds for Stephen Lovejoy's education; and to Sarah Lovejoy,
she gave "my Green Damask Gown and Petticoat and red quilted Petticoat, and
one pair of staves..." Captain Abiel erected a stone over her resting place
on the farm that stood for many years.
That part of Vassalborough in the west side of the Kennebec was
incorporated as Sidney in 1792 including his home farm, the saw mill and
much of his timber land.
He was always described as a man of strong will with much determination and
decision of character except that he used liberally intoxicating liquors as
was the custom of the times in which he lived. Once he consulted physicians
in Boston about his failing eyesight which rendered him blind about 1796 or
97 and he was admonished by them to abstain from anything more than a "very
moderate use" of stimulants. It is related that not long afterward Captain
Abiel poured out a glass of brandy one memorable day and holding it out at
arm's length and looking at it said "Good-bye, eyes" and drank it all.
On January 20, 1803 his sons, Nathaniel, Abiel, Thomas, Stephen, Jacob,
William and his eldest daughter, Fanny Smiley, petitioned the judge of
probate for Kennebec Co. to appoint a guardian for their father, giving as
a reason for their request that "he was distracted in his mind or non-
compose and incapable of taking care of himself or his property." The
selectmen were ordered to examine into his mental condition and, following
their report, the judge appointed Abiel' son-in-law, Samuel Dinsmore, as
his guardian. In July, 1806, the guardian petitioned the judge to be
relieved from the guardianship as he said "Mr. Lovejoy was restored to his
reason and capable of taking care of his property." The selectmen of Sidney
were of the same opinion and the guardianship was removed.
In Aug. 1806 Captain Abiel deeded shares in two of his saw mills and 100
acres to his sons, Stephen and William, who were to care for Captain Abiel
and his wife, Mary, alternatively, which arrangement continued as long as
the parents lived. In 1808 Abiel and Mary deeded Lot #40 in Sidney to their
son, Francis.
The exact date of Captain Abiel's death is not definitely known but
probably was 1811. It is thus described: - "One hot day in July he would
sit out in the little entry where the wind blew on him and it was thought
he might have taken a sudden cold the next day. All at once he was
discovered to be breathing very hard. Some one went immediately to him but
he was not conscious and was dead on July 4th.

Captain Abiel and Mary were buried on a plot on their farm in Sidney on the
slope down to the Kennebec River, common field stones first being placed to
mark the spot. An infant child, born and died 1784, was buried there and
also their negro slaves, Boston and Venus, who died before them and Salem
who died later. As similar stones marked the burial place of the negroes,
it is impossible to know which are the graves of the master and mistress
and which are the graves of their servants.

Many family stories and legends are told about Abiel Lovejoy. There is a
familiar tradition that when a young man Abiel lived with the Indians for
two or three years, hunting and trapping. After a time the Indians became
suspicious that he was "over-reaching" them in their business transactions.
They became jealous because he obtained more furs than they, and resolved
to take his life. One old squaw, who had taken a fancy to Abiel, because
she had lost a son about his own age, told Abiel they intended killing him
when they were hunting together the following day but if no opportunity
presented itself while hunting they intended to murder him that night while
he was sleeping. Abiel consequently feigned illness the next morning, did
not join the hunting party and started with all speed for the nearest white
settlement. At nightfall he climbed a high tree concealing himself in the
branches. The Indians, returning early from the hunt, started in pursuit,
arrived at the foot of the same tree where he was hiding and they danced
and yelled about all night, throwing their tomahawks at the tree and
telling what they would do to him when they got him, all ignorant of the
fact that he was over their heads. Later by another route he reached the
white settlement and was safe.
A clipping from an old Sidney newspaper relates the story which is as
follows: though the practice of keeping slaves was not generally prevalent
in the early development of the Kennebec Valley, at least one settler,
Abiel Lovejoy, owned a number of negroes and it is told that when he
received word that Massachusetts had passed an act freeing the slaves he
called two of the oldest, Salem and Venus, and offered them their liberty.
They refused to leave and Salem's answer to the Squire was "You've had all
de meat, now pick de bones."
Still another story is that Captain Abiel once went into the fields where
his slaves and employees were cutting hay and carried a jug of liquor which
was thought in those days to be quite indispensable. Criticizing the work,
he demanded "Who mowed this swath?" Anxious to escape any censure some
employees replied, "Boston" meaning the old negro slave. Captain Abiel
demanded who mowed this and that and each reply was "Boston." "Very well,"
old Abiel said, "as Boston has done all the work, he shall have all the
Another Lovejoy slave once was attacked by wolves while driving a yoke of
oxen and a load of hay. When they found the dead man, they also found the
carcasses of seven wolves killed by his pitchfork showing how desperately
the poor slave had fought for his life.
Another old story familiar to Maine Lovejoys runs like this: one dark night
as Captain Abiel was piloting his lumber boat down the river on the way to
Boston the devil appeared on the water and demanded Captain Abiel's soul in
payment for his sins. The crew was terrified but Abiel took off the round
garters which held up his long stockings and tossed them to Satan saying "
that is all you are going to get. Now be off with you."

He was born on 16 Dec 1731 at Andover, Essex, Massachusetts, United
States of America. He married Mary Brown, daughter of Nathaniel
Brown and Abigail Colesworthy, on 14 Dec 1758 at Charlestown,
Suffolk, Massachusetts, United States of America. He died on 4 Jul 1811 at
Sidney, Kennebec, Maine, United States of America, at age 79.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Williams lines/DNA

My brother Kenny kindly volunteered his DNA to see if we could match to any other Williams families. We did find matches to two other Williams lines, a degree away so we share a common ancestor probably 8-12 generations back. One of the Williams family was from Carmel, as far as he could trace the line, and the other was from nearby Kent, New York.
From the records I've traced our line also comes from Kent, New York. There is a lot of Williams family members that helped settle Kent, but I have not been able to tie our Williams line to the others in records. The DNA shows that we are connected in some way, so I've started to trace those lines back in hope that I can find some relationship to our line in the records.
My grandfather was Anson Levi Williams, the son of Anson S Williams and Charlotte Burdick.
Anson S Williams was born June 1, 1854 in Brewster, New York, the son of Richard Williams and Calista Bailey.
Richard Williams was born August 26, 1832 in Carmel or Kent, New York, the son of Squire Williams and Mary Ann Baxter. His first wife, Calista, was from the Bailey family who helped settle Southeast. Anson S was their oldest son, then daughter Sophia J, son Charles E, son James Henry, son William Roger, and youngest daughter Lillian M. They eventually moved to Danbury where Calista died. Richard married Sarah March and died in Bethel, Connecticut.
Squire Williams was born about 1789 in New York, the son of Abram Williams and Sarah.
Squire Williams was called this in every record, except the 1860 census which says Squire and has a small notation that looks like Eli, so it's possible that Squire was a title. But Squire Williams was also a name used by descendants of Roger Williams of Rhode Island, so it's equally possible that Squire was his name. A hint might be that his grandson Anson S Williams had a middle name of S if he was named for his grandfather and that his other grandson was named William Roger.
Squire Williams settled in Kent, New York between 1830-1840 and lived there for many years. He and Mary Ann had three children, a daughter Sarah J who never married, a daughter Nancy (this always shocks me that I have an ancestress named Nancy Williams) who married Ebenezer Barrett who died in the Civil War, and their son, Richard, our direct ancestor. They eventually all moved to Southeast, New York and died there.
I know very little of Abram and Sarah, Squire Williams' parents. They also lived in Kent and it's possible that Abram was born in Connecticut, according to one record.

Genealogy Club of Newtown

Matthew Bielawa spoke at our May meeting about Eastern European genealogy. I don't have any relatives from that area in either my or my husband's family, but it was a very interesting presentation. Matt was a great speaker and I learned a lot about the history and resources available in that area of Europe. Matt's website is
A great blog to follow on this topic is Steve Danko's:

Saturday, April 24, 2010

My Uber Family

One of the amazing things about our families is that most of them came to New England early, in the 1600's, and pretty much stayed here. As a result there was much inter-marrying in the early years especially that have crossed the family lines. The best example of this is the Phillip Fowler family who came to Ipswich, Massachusetts from Marlborough, England.
The daughter, Margaret Fowler, and her first husband, Christopher Osgood, are the 8th great-grandparents of my father-in-law, Frank Moore, through his Lovejoy line.
Margaret and her second husband are the 9th great-grandparents of my mother, Eleanor Fairchild, through her Wildman-Way line.
Margaret and her third husband, Thomas Coleman, are the 9th great-grandparents of my father, Kenneth Williams through his Burdick line.
Margaret's brother, Thomas Fowler and his wife, Hannah Jordan, are the 6th great-grandparents of my mother-in-law, Constance Howe.
There are other connections, but it's not unusual since the pool of possible relationships was so small in early New England. But I find it interesting that the family of Phillip Fowler has direct ties to my mother, father, mother-in-law, and father-in-law.
Margaret Fowler married four times, dying by 1694 on Nantucket.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Hannah Emerson Duston

We were watching The Generations Project (Sort of a Who Do you Think you Are for non-celebrities) and they were talking about the Studebaker family in PA who were taken by Indians. Allan was unaware that his family had a lot of interaction with Indians in Maine and New Hampshire, the most famous being Hannah Duston.
Hannah and her husband, Thomas, lived in Haverhill, MA on the NH border. She had just had her twelve child when Indians attacked. Her husband was able to get the eleven older children to the garrison, but Hannah, the baby Martha, and a neighbor woman, Mrs. Neff, were captured. The baby was killed by dashing her brains against an apple tree and the captives marched northward to Canada.
Far north in New Hampshire, Hannah resolved to escape. She, Mrs Neff and a boy managed to kill the Indians while they were sleeping (ten, while a woman and boy escaped). She scalped them and they took a canoe, floating down the Merrimack River. They made it to Nashua, NH. Hannah received twenty-five pounds (a considerable sum) for her scalps. A statue was erected for her in Haverhill, the first statue for a woman in the USA.