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Windham County Connecticut
WINDHAM COUNTY HISTORY RECORDS
In 1631, Governor Winslow, of Plymouth, appears to have had his attention drawn to the settlement of Connecticut, and he made a journey to Connecticut soon after, and discovered Connecticut River. In 1632, some of the people of New Plymouth were in Connecticut, and soon after determined to erect a trading-house at Windsor, as an advantage to commencing the future colony. The Indian name of the River was Quonehtacut, (long river) from this the Colony took its name.
In 1634, and for many years after, all the settlers for New England landed in the colony of New Plymouth, or Massachusetts, and emigrated from thence to Connecticut. For several years after 1635, there were no settlements by the English in the Colony, except in the towns of Windsor, Hartford and Wethersfield, and a few at Saybrook.
In the spring of 1636 the emigration began again in companies from Massachusetts to Connecticut, and sent their provisions by water. By September 1636 the three towns upon the River [Windsor, Hartford and Wethersfield] were permanently settled by many inhabitants. All emigrants to Connecticut, until the settlement of New Haven, came first to Hartford, and afterwards settled other towns, as they did Stratford, Fairfield, Norwalk, etc.
Here were three towns located in the wilderness, with a large number
of inhabitants, without any law to govern them, either civil, military,
or criminal; and the principles and much less the practice and forms
of an independent government, in a great measure unknown to men who
had been educated under the Crown of England and had learned only to
obey. The first year (1635) no courts were organized, not even a town
organization formed, and much less any thing like a General Court to
enact laws and punish offences. The officers of the several churches
governed their own members according to the rules and discipline of
the church; and as no other law existed in the Colony, all offenders,
if any were tried before 1636, must have been tried by the Mosaic law,
by the churches. But as the law of Moses made no provision to punish
a white man for selling a gun to an Indianit therefore became
necessary that some civil body of men should be so organized as to
enact such laws as would prevent or punish offences not provided for
in the Bible. The placing of firearms in the possession of the Indians
was considered one of the most culpable offences in the Colony, which
endangered not only the property but the safety and lives of the English
settlers. At this time it was discovered that Henry Stiles had traded
a gun with the Indians for corn. Therefore on the 26th day of April,
1636, a court was organized by five of the best men in the Colony whether
they constituted themselves a court or were elected by the people,
the record gives no account. The Court consisted of Roger Ludlow, as
chairman, and Mr. Westwood, John Steel, Andrew Ward, and William Phelps,
The General Court soon discovered the propriety of adding a House
of Representatives to the first court formed in 1636, particularly
upon great occasions. Therefore, in May 1637, the several towns were
represented at the
The General Court took cognizance of divisions in churches
of all criminal offences of all civil matters the appointment
and confirmation of all officers in the jurisdiction declared
regulated commerce formed and
As early as 1640 the General Court intended that the inhabitants
should measure their apparel by the length of their purses the
Court being the judges. The constable in each town was ordered to take
notice of all persons, and if he judged any persons exceeded their
rank and condition in life, in their attire, to warn them to appear
before the Particular Court to answer for the offence. Most of the
penalties attached to the criminal laws, were accompanied with flogging
and pillory; so much so that a law was enacted in 1643, which made
it imperative upon all the towns on Connecticut River to appoint a
whipper to do execution upon offenders. The Puritans appear to have
punished offenders by whipping, with the same object that a parent
corrects his children, only to improve their habits,
As Massachusetts and Plymouth were settled a few years earlier than Connecticut, and had become somewhat organized as a government, many of their laws were copied into the code of laws enacted by Connecticut. Labor and dress were regulated by law in those colonies before it was in this. Their laws upon these subjects were much more severe than in this jurisdiction. They had a law that ladies dresses should be made so long as to cover their shoe buckles. They prohibited short sleeves, and ordered the sleeves to be lengthened to cover the arms to the wrists. They forbid by law, immoderate great breeches, knots of ribbon, broad shoulder bands, silk roses, double ruffs and cuffs. Evan as late as 1653, John Fairbanks was solemnly tried for wearing great boots. He probably shewed that he was afflicted with corns on his toes, and therefore he could not comfortably wear small ones, as he was acquitted on trial. The colonies were poor, and it appears the object of the law was to prevent all kinds of extravagance, and to compel the inhabitants to govern their living, strictly by their means.
As there were no printing presses in the colony or country in the
early settlement of Connecticut, the laws enacted at each session of
the General Court were sent to the constables at each town and read
by them at public meetings to the people. This inconvenient practice
was continued in the Colony nearly forty years, until 1672. This year
all the laws in force were prepared and sent to Cambridge to be printed,
and bound with blank paper interspersed in
WINDHAM PEOPLE MENTIONED:
Abbe, Samuel, of Windham, Abraham Mitchell, married his widow, he and Mary Abbe, were administrators on the estate of Samuel Abbe in 1698. John Abbe, of Windham, died Dec. 1700; he left a widow and children, and married a widow who had children by her first husband. The name of Abbe is first found in the colony at Wethersfield; the names of Hebard or Hibbard and Ripley are first found at Windham.
Abbey, Samuel, Windham died in 1698 wife Mary. His children were, Mary, 25 years of age, Samuel 23, Thomas 20, Eleazer 18, Ebenezer 16, Mary 14, Sarah 13, Hepzibah 10, Abigail 8, John 7, Benjamin 6, and Jonathan 2.
Ashley, Jonathan, senr., Hartford died in 1704. His son Joseph was his executor. He married a daughter of William Wadsworth, senr. His children were Jonathan, Joseph, Samuel, Sarah an Rebecca. He gave four score acres of land in Plainfield to his son Samuel. His family appear to have been a distinct family from that of Robert, of Massachusetts.
Backus, Stephen, Norwich, 1660 married Sarah, a daughter of Lyon Gardiner, the first Lord of Gardners Island. His sons, Stephen born in 70, and Timothy in 82. Stephen moved to Plainfield, afterwards to Canterbury. F.M. Caulkins. William, was early found at Saybrook, and made free in 63. The name was at Saybrook at a much earlier period, (in 38); he afterwards became a proprietor of Norwich.
Bement, John first settler on lot now occupied by his descendants came in 1682 [to Enfield], d. 1684, left three sons. John, d. 1703, had two sons Benjamin, b. 1698, m. Elizabeth Abbe, 1723, removed to Simsbury. John, b. 1701, history unknown. William, 2d son of John, senr., m. Hannah Terry, daughter of Capt. Samuel Terry, 1707, settled in the east part of the town, died 1728, left four sons. William, b. 1708, m. Phoebe Markham, and removed to WINDHAM. Samuel, b. 1720. Ebenezer, b. 1723. Joseph, b. 1725, settled and died in Enfield, without children. Edmund, 3d son of John, senr., m. Prudence Morgan, 1700 and Priscilla Warner 2d wife, 1703, d. 1745, had three sons; jonathan, b. 1705, removed to Suffield, d. in the Cape Breton expedition; Dennis, b. 1711, m. Mary Abbe, daughter of Thos Abbe, 1737, d. 1789, had two sons Dennis and Edmund, both settled and died in Enfield. Edmund, 3d son of Edmund, senr., b. 1713, settled in East Hartford.
Bingham, Thomas, is first found at Norwich as a proprietor in 1660, after which he married, and had eleven children. The name yet remains in New London county. Thomas, of Windham, 97.
[Cogswell]. Davenport, Rev. John, of Stamford, was the only son of
Rev. John Davenport,one of the founders of New Haven. Rev. John, of
Stamford, had a daughter, Sarah, who married Rev. Eleazer Wheelock,
D.D. of Lebanon. Dr. Wheelock was known as the founder of Moors
Charity School for Christianizing the Indians. Sarah married
Rev. Mr. Maltby, of New Haven, by whom she had a son and two daughters;
the son became a minister, and settled in Bermuda in the West Indies,
and afterwards settled in Charleston, S.C.; one of the daughters died
young, the other married Doct. Betts, of Norwalk, Conn. After the death
of Mr. Maltby, she married Dr. Wheelock, while a widow, and by her
2d marriage had three children, viz. Theodora, Ruth and Ralph. Theodora
married Alexander Phelps, Esq., of Hebron, who afterwards removed to
Oxford in New Hampshire;
Conant, Exercise and Sarah, Windham, as early as 1697. This name is first found at Windham perhaps the name might have been at New London earlier.
Crane, Benjamin, senr., Wethersfield juror in 1664 he died in 93. His eldest son was Benjamin -- he had other children. John, of Wethersfield, died in 94. Jonathan, of Windham, 97.
Deane, William, of Plainfield, had a deed of land of William Blanchard, of Hartford, in 1720. Relation not found.
Fowler, Jonathan, of Windham died before 1698. His widow, Elizabeth, administratrix. Children, Elizabeth, Joseph, Sarah and Jonathan.
Fyler, Lieut.Walter, of Windham died in 1683, Wife, Jane.
In his will he gave the use of his estate to his wife, Jane, during
her life; he also gave her 100 [English pounds] in cash to bestow upon
another husband, or to reserve it to herself to bestow upon whom she
pleased. He left two sons and no daughters. His sons were, John and
Zerubbabel. He gave his grandson, Thomas, 20 [English pounds], and
his other three grand children 5 [English pounds] each. Estate 318:
6: 10 [English pounds]. Jane, his widow, died in 1690, not having married
a second time. She had a grand child, Jane Fyler. The money her husband
gave her to purchase a second husband, she carefully saved for her
children and grand children. Zerubbabel Fyler, of Windsor, son of Walter,
died in 1714. Wife
Hebard, (see also Samuel Abbe). Hebard or Hibbard, Robert, of Windham died previous to 1710,
Hibbard, (see Hebard) (see Samuel Abbe)
Kates, John, Windham died in 1697. He gave in his will 200 acres of land, by entailment, to the poor of Windham, and 200 acres for a school house for the town. He gave his negro to Rev. Samuel Whiting, of said Windham, and other personal property. To the church of the town he gave 10 [English pounds] in money. He made Mary Howard executrix, and gave her the remainder of his estate, unless his child, or any of his children then in England, should come to New England, and if so, such as should come should have all his estate. He was the first of the name in the colony. This name is spelt Kates, on record, and by himself in his will but he was the same Lieut. John Cates who served under Oliver Cromwells administration of the British Government. His negro Jo. Whom he gave to Mr. Whiting, he procured in Virginia, where he first landed. He escaped his pursuers in Virginia, and came to Norwich, yet feeling unsafe, he went to Windham, when a wilderness and in 89 raised the first house, where he closed his life in safety from punishment by Charles II. He gave no silver plate to any person, as has been stated by some historians.
[Kingsbury]. Cole, Samuel, married Mary, daughter of James Kingsbury, of Plainfield, in 1693.
[Morris, Ebenezer] Killam, Lot a first settler in the south
part of the town [Enfield],d. 1683, aged between 40 and 50 the
first person who died in the settlement; left one son, James, who settled
and died in Enfield, 1761, aged
Ripley, (see also Samuel Abbe). Ripley, Joshua, of Windham, was one
of the early settlers of the town, and was a commissioner there before
1697. He was a leading man, and well educated. He is the first of the
name found in the
Wade, Robert, of Windham died in 1696. Peter Cross, administrator. [a note at the end referred you to another page: Wade, Robert, Hartford, 1639 of Saybrook in 57. He was divorced from Joanna his wife, who had refused to fellowship with him in England and America for 15 years. This was the second divorce granted in the colony. He held 10 acres of land in Hartford in 39. This was a highly respectable name in Massachusetts and Connecticut.]
Waldo, John, Windham died in 1700. This family appears to have come late into the colony. He had a son John in Windham perhaps other children. He left an estate of 292 [English pounds]. It was a family of respectability, and probably he was the ancestor of L.P. Waldo, Esq., of Tolland.
[Welch, Jonathan Ashley]. Ashley, Jonathan, son of David, married
Abigail Stebbins, of Springfield, 1699, and had children, Abigail born
1701, Azariah born 1704, Mercy 1707, Lydia 1710, Jonathan 1712, Benjamin
1714, Ebenezer 1717, Phineas 1729. Jonathan, son of David, died 1749.
The above Jonathan, the son of Jonathan, graduated at Yale College
in 1730, in the same class with three other cousins, viz. Israel, John
and Joseph Ashley. This Rev. Jonathan, son of Jonathan, was ordained
at Deerfield, Mass., in 1732. He married Dorothy Williams, daughter
of Rev. William Williams, of Hatfield. She was born in 1713. He was
the second ordained minister at Deerfield, and became a celebrated
preacher and divine. Their children were, William, born July, 1737,
died in 1737, Jonathan born Jan. 6, 1738, William born 1740, died same
year, Dorothy born Apr. 3, 1743, married Dea. William Williams, of
Dalton, Mass., Elizabeth born June 9, 1745, married Maj. David Dickinson,
of Deerfield, 1783, Solomon
WINDHAM PEOPLE mentioned in A Part of the Early Marriages, Births, and Baptisms, in Hartford, Ct., from Record.
Cole, Samuel, m. Mary Kingsbury, dau. of James, of Plainfield, Jan. 2, 1693.
Demmon, Benjamin, of H. M. MARY Palmer, of Windham, Nov. 5, 1740 son David b. July 30, 1744.
PASSENGERS OF THE MAY FLOWER IN 1620
A List of the Names of the Passengers of that noted vessel, the May Flower, on her first voyage to this country, in 1620, and landed her passengers at Plymouth Rock, (now in Massachusetts,) on the 11th day of December, O.S., 1620.
Alden: (see also Mullins)
Butten (see Fuller)
Cushman (see Allerton)
Howland (see Carver)
Maverick (see Allerton)
Snow (see Hopkins)
Soule (see Winslow)
Thompson (see White)
Winslow: (see also White) (see also Chilton)
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