Friday, July 20, 2018

Charged With Beating his Wife – Thomas Dutton

B. 6 Oct 1621 in Dutton, England
M. about 1647 in Billerica, Massachusetts
Wife: Susannah
D. 22 Jan 1687 in Billerica, Massachusetts

Thomas Dutton found himself at the center of a scandal when neighbors claimed he viciously struck his wife. He started out life in the village of Dutton, England when he was born there on October 6, 1621. His parents were John Dutton and Mary Neeld, and the family migrated to New England with the Winthrop fleet, settling in Reading.

In about 1647, Thomas married a woman named Susannah; her maiden name is unknown. Between 1648 and 1669, they had nine children. In 1659, they moved to Woburn, and it was there Thomas seemed to be at odds with one of his neighbors, John Carter. The incident began on September 29, 1661 when Carter’s two teenaged daughters said they saw Thomas attack Susannah with a stick. The girls said Thomas’ wife was holding a child as he hit her repeatedly, and she told him she feared he would kill the child. Carter’s wife Elizabeth and a servant both said they heard Susannah “crying out between the blows.” Meanwhile, the Duttons 10-year-old daughter Mary ran to the Carters house and hid there, afraid of her father.

The following morning, Carter along with another man went to Thomas’ house and confronted him. They could see Susannah had been crying because her eyes were swollen, but he seemed to deny being guilty of anything. Later that day, Susannah visited the Carters and she seemed terrorized, saying she could still feel his blows upon her arms.

Thomas was charged with assault and the case was presented in court that December. The Carters and their servant were the only witnesses against him because Susannah wouldn’t testify against her husband, claiming it never happened. Thomas had a document signed by 21 people from Reading saying that when he lived there, he was “tender and loving” to his wife and he displayed no evidence of violence against her. Another document signed by 11 people, presumably from Woburn, stated the same thing. Thomas also challenged the credibility of Carter’s servant by accusing him of being a drunkard. But the court decided that was that Thomas was guilty, and he was fined £5 for his crime.

Thomas was involved in another strange case in 1668, when a man named Michael Bacon claimed he stole “a napkin and a spoon.” Presumably these were valuable items, because Thomas sued Bacon for slandering him. This time Thomas won his case and Bacon was fined £15. Again it was the men of Woburn who came to his defense by saying that he was an “industrious” man who would never steal anything.

In 1669, Thomas and his family moved to Billerica, and Susannah died there in 1684. He remarried within a few months, on November 10, 1684 to a widow named Ruth Hooper. Thomas died about two years later on January 22, 1687.

1. Thomas Dutton – B. 14 Sep 1648, Reading, Massachusetts; M. (1) Rebecca Brabrook (1648-1721), 10 Jan 1679, Billerica, Massachusetts; (2) Sarah Converse (~1648-1738), Nov 1721

2. Mary Dutton – B. 14 Sep 1651, Reading, Massachusetts; D. 9 Jul 1678, Billerica, Massachusetts; M. Jacob Hamlet (~1641-1703), 21 Dec 1669, Billerica, Massachusetts

3. Susannah Dutton – B. 22 Feb 1654, Reading, Massachusetts; D. Dec 1723, Billerica, Massachusetts; M. (1) John Durrant (1650-1692), 16 Nov 1670, Billerica, Massachusetts; (2) Justinian Holden (1644-1699), 6 Dec 1693, Woburn, Massachusetts

4. John Dutton – B. 2 Mar 1656, Reading, Massachusetts; D. 7 Apr 1735, Billerica, Massachusetts; M. (1) Sarah Shedd (1658-1721), 20 Sep 1681, Billerica, Massachusetts; (2) Ruth ?-1738), May 1721, Billerica, Massachusetts

5. Elizabeth Dutton – B. 28 Jan 1659, Woburn, Massachusetts; D. 7 Apr 1698, Concord, Massachusetts; M. William Baker (1650-1702), 5 May 1681, Woburn, Massachusetts

6. Joseph Dutton – B. 25 Jan 1661, Woburn, Massachusetts; D. 24 Jan 1734, Haddam, Connecticut; M. (1) Rebecca Merriam (1662-1693), 19 Aug 1685, Reading, Massachusetts; (2) Mary Cutler (1663-1744), 7 Dec 1693, Charlestown, Massachusetts

7. Sarah Dutton – B. 5 Mar 1662, Woburn, Massachusetts; D. about 1757, Malden, Massachusetts; M. Samuel Lewis (1641-1698), 1683, Charlestown, Massachusetts

8. James Dutton – B. 22 Aug 1665, Woburn, Massachusetts; D. 12 Jul 1755, Chelmsford, Massachusetts

9. Benjamin Dutton – B. 19 Feb 1669, Woburn, Massachusetts; D. 11 Feb 1693

Sex in Middlesex: Popular Mores in a Massachusetts County, 1649-1699, Roger Thompson, 1989
Find A Grave

Builder in Early New France – Paul-Charles Chalifour

B. 26 Dec 1612 in Périgny, France
M. (1) 10 Apr 1644 in La Rochelle, France
Wife: Marie Jeannet
M. (2) 28 Sep 1648 in Quebec City, New France
Wife: Jacquette Archambault
D. 13 Oct 1680 in Quebec City, New France

When an effort was being made to populate New France, men were needed with useful skills, and Paul-Charles Chalifour fit that profile. He was born on December 26, 1612 in Périgny, France, which bordered La Rochelle. His parents were Paul-Mathurin Chalifour and Marie Gabourit, but nothing else is known of Paul-Charles’ family except for that his parents had him baptized in the Calvinist church.

At some point, Paul-Charles learned the trade of building construction, and it’s likely that he got well-experienced at it. On April 10, 1644, he married a woman named Marie Jeannet in La Rochelle. The day of the wedding, he renounced his Protestant religion so he could become a Catholic. The young couple had a daughter born the following year, but within a couple of years, both his wife and his child seem to have died.

Some major events in Paul-Charles’ life happened in 1647. On May 1st of that year, he was imprisoned at the palace of La Rochelle for an unknown crime. Then shortly after he was released, he decided to migrate to New France; no doubt his expertise in carpentry was a big factor in why he was recruited. The exact dates of his trip, and the name of the ship that brought him are missing from the records. His arrival in New France must have been before September 15th, though, because he and a friend were hired that day to build a house and a barn on the Ile d’Orleans. For their work, the two men were paid 800 livres and 20 pots of brandy to divide between them.

At age 35, Paul-Charles decided to find a new bride, and he married the 16-year-old daughter of a Quebec City settler, Jacquette Archambault, on September 28, 1644. Jacquette’s 12-year-old sister was married to another man on the same day, so it was a double ceremony. Paul-Charles and Jacquette had fourteen children together, born between 1649 and 1673, only one of whom died as an infant.

Paul-Charles had several construction contracts over the next few years; he specialized in the framework for buildings. In 1649, he worked on a windmill for Jacques LaNeuf for a payment of 1,000 livres, two barrels of flour and a barrel of lard. A few years later, in 1653, he made the frame for a building that was 20’ x 18’. The following year he did the same for two houses on some settlers’ properties. In another project that year, he constructed a cellar for a house. He needed help on these projects and he hired an apprentice to work with him.  In 1652, he built a house for own family on a grant of land he received in a section near Quebec City called La Canardiere. The property had 3 arpents of river frontage and was 40 arpents deep.

Constructing buildings wasn’t the only occupation Paul-Charles had; he dabbled for a time in eel fishing. He also maintained a farm, reporting in the 1666 census that he had 14 arpents under cultivation. He continued into the 1660s and 1670s as a carpenter, and he constructed the framework on at least two more windmills.

Among Paul-Charles’ fourteen children, the first seven were all daughters, which meant they would each need a husband. In New France, girls often got married in their teens to older men, and the first of the seven girls was barely 13-years-old when she married. The pattern continued with the other six girls each marrying before they were 17. How much of a hand Paul-Charles had in finding husbands for his daughters isn’t known, but given the girls’ ages, it’s very likely they were all arranged marriages.

Paul-Charles made out his will on December 15, 1678, leaving half of his property to his wife and the other half to be split among his surviving children. He died on October 13, 1680. Jacquette lived another 15 years, passing away in December 1705.

Children by Marie Jeannet:
1. Marie Chalifour — B. about Jun 1645, La Rochelle, France; D. (probably) young

Children by Jacquette Archambault:
1. Marie Chalifour — B. about Oct 1649, Quebec City, New France; D. 12 Oct 1663, Quebec City, New France; M. Joachim Martin (~1636-1690), 5 Nov 1662, Quebec City, New France

2. Marguerite Chalifour — B. 23 Apr 1652, Quebec City, New France; D. 28 Dec 1705, Quebec City, New France; M. Jean Badeau (1636-1711), 28 Oct 1665, Quebec City, New France

3. Jeanne Chalifour — B. 22 Feb 1654, Quebec City, New France; D. 1682, Trois-Riviéres, New France; M. François Bibaut (1642-1708), 17 Aug 1671, Quebec City, New France

4. Simone Chalifour — B. 18 Oct 1655, Quebec City, New France; D. 26 Oct 1695, Quebec City, New France; M. Julien Brosseau (1640-1713), 28 Oct 1668, Quebec City, New France

5. Françoise Chalifour — B. 4 Dec 1657, Quebec City, New France; D. 5 Jul 1697, St-Pierre, New France; M. Jacques Nolin (1641-1729), 18 Nov 1671, Quebec City, New France

6. Jeanne-Anne Chalifour — B. 25 Sep 1659, Quebec City, New France; D. 18 Jan 1703, Quebec City, New France; M. Germain Langlois (1642-1749), 14 Jul 1675, Quebec City, New France

7. Marie-Louise Chalifour — B. 3 Sep 1661, Quebec City, New France; D. 29 May 1735, Quebec City, New France; M. Josef Van Den Dyck (1653-1725), 18 Apr 1678, Quebec City, New France

8. Paul-François Chalifour — B. 13 May 1663, Quebec City, New France; D. 29 May 1718, Quebec City, New France; (1) Catherine Huppe (1668-1685), 22 Jan 1685, Quebec City, New France; (2) Marie-Jeanne Phileau (1665-1708), 28 Nov 1686, Beauport, New France; (3) Marie-Madeleine Brassard (1676-1752), 4 May 1711, Quebec City, New France

9. Marie-Madeleine Chalifour — B. 24 Mar 1665, Quebec City, New France; D. 2 May 1682, Quebec City, New France

10. Etienne Chalifour — B. 21 Mar 1667, Quebec City, New France; D. 10 Nov 1687, Quebec City, New France; M. Claudine Bourbeau (1671-1688), 29 Oct 1687, Charlesbourg, New France

11. Pierre Chalifour — B. 12 Dec 1668, Quebec City, New France; D. 25 Mar 1715, Charlesbourg, New France; M. Anne Mignier (1672-1743), 17 Oct 1689, Charlesbourg, New France

12. Anne Chalifour — B. 15 Apr 1670, Quebec City, New France; D. 13 Dec 1730, Beauport, New France; M. (1) Jean Normand (1661-1691), 6 Jun 1686, Quebec City, New France; (2) Jean Delage (1667-1724), 7 Feb 1692, Beauport, New France

13. Jean-Baptiste Chalifour — B. 9 Jan 1672, Quebec City, New France; D. 25 May 1672, Quebec City, New France;

14. Claude Chalifour — B. 30 Jan 1673, Quebec City, New France; D. Feb 1723, Quebec City, New France

Dictionnaire généalogique des familles canadiennes depuis la fondation de la colonie jusqu'à nos jours, Cyprien Tanguay, 1890
Quebec, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1997
Our French-Canadian Ancestors, Gerard Lebel (translated by Thomas J. Laforest), 1990

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Noblewoman Turned Puritan – Elizabeth St. John

B. about Jan 1605 in Keysoe, England
M. 6 Aug 1629 in Boston, England
Husband: Samuel Whiting
D. 3 Mar 1677 in Lynn, Massachusetts

Elizabeth St. John came from a noble family and was a direct descendant of Henry I of England, but she was also a Puritan who migrated to the Massachusetts colony. She was born in about January 1605 in Keysoe, England, a village in Bedfordshire. Her father, Oliver St. John, was a member of Parliament serving in the House of Lords. Her mother, Sarah Bulkeley, was the daughter of a minister with Puritan beliefs; she died when Elizabeth was only six years old. Elizabeth had two brothers.

Because of her family’s status, Elizabeth received a good education and developed a life-long love of books. This was during a time when few girls were educated at all. She was said to be known for “her beauty, her dignity, and her commanding presence.” She remained unmarried until she was 24-years-old, when she found a husband in a widower named Samuel Whiting. Their wedding took place in Boston, England on August 6, 1629.

Like Elizabeth’s grandfather, Samuel was a minister with Puritan beliefs. At the time of their marriage, he had a rectorship at Skirbeck, a town near Boston, but got into trouble because of he refused to give up his non-conformist views. Elizabeth gave birth to their first child in 1633. A couple of years later, Samuel sold their property, and the family, which included a daughter from his first marriage, moved to New England.

After arriving in Massachusetts on May 26, 1636, the Whitings settled in the town of Saugus. Samuel was installed as minister and the town was renamed Lynn in honor of Kings Lynn, a place Elizabeth’s husband had preached in England. Elizabeth had another child in 1637, and two more by 1645. They were said to have had two other children who died young.

Samuel and Elizabeth’s home in Lynn was across the road from the meetinghouse, and was noted for its gardens, which produced a variety of fruit and vegetables. Along with caring for her home and children, Elizabeth also had the duties of a minister’s wife. She was said to have helped her husband with his writings and held classes for young girls who lived in the community. Also, she and her husband took in an Indian girl who became part of the family for a time during the 1640s.

Back in England, Elizabeth’s brother Oliver became a prominent figure. He was a lawyer who married into Oliver Cromwell’s family, served in the House of Commons, then sided with the Parliamentary side in the English Civil War. In 1648, he was made Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, the second highest court in England. He lost his position in 1660 when the crown was restored to power.

Elizabeth’s three sons all became ministers in New England, and her daughter married a minister. On March 3, 1677, Elizabeth died at their home in Lynn. Her husband lived a couple more years, passing away in 1679. Elizabeth was an ancestor of Calvin Coolidge, Bette Davis and John Kerry among other famous relations.

1. Samuel Whiting – B. 25 Mar 1633, Skirbeck, England; D. 28 Feb 1713, Billerica, Massachusetts; M. Dorcas Chester (1637-1712), 12 Nov 1656, Wethersfield, Connecticut

2. John Whiting – B. 1637, Lynn, Massachusetts; D. 11 Oct 1689, Leverton, England; M. Esther ? (1639-1689), 1653, Salem, Massachusetts

3. Joseph Whiting — B. 6 Apr 1641, Lynn, Massachusetts; D. 7 Apr 1723, Southampton, New York; M. (1) Sarah Danforth (1646-?); (2) Rebecca Bishop (1663-1726)

4. Elizabeth Whiting — B. 1645; D. 1733, Hartford, Connecticut; M. Jeremiah Hobart (1630-1715)

Memoir of Rev. Samuel Whiting, D.D., and of his wife Elizabeth St. John, William Whiting, 1873
Oliver St. John (Wikipedia article)
Find A Grave

Monday, July 16, 2018

The Creole Way of Life – Louis Favel Ravellette

B. about 1758 in Detroit, New France
M. 2 Aug 1784 in Vincennes, Virginia Territory
Wife: Françoise Agnes Godere
D. 1835 in Vincennes, Indiana

Louis Favel Ravellette was one of the early French settlers in Vincennes, part of a culture that came and went within a few generations. He was born in the Detroit River area to Jean-Baptiste Ravellette and Rosalie Marie-Françoise Fauvel; his parents got married in September 1758, but he may have been born before their wedding. Louis had at least one brother and four sisters. The family moved to Vincennes by 1767, where two of Louis’ sisters were born.

England took control of New France during Louis' childhood, then as he came of age, the American Revolution began. In 1778, French men living in Vincennes, including Louis, pledged an oath of allegiance to support their cause. The following year, George Rogers Clark fought a victorious battle to take Vincennes from the English, and did so with the help of the French inhabitants. It’s likely that Louis, at about age 20, was one of those who joined in.

In the spring of 1783, Louis got involved with a 16-year-old girl named Françoise-Agnes Godere, and she became pregnant. To make things right, Louis agreed to a contract where he promised to marry her. On a document dated September 1, 1783, he committed to having 150 livres paid from his estate if he died before the wedding took place. Their baby was born in January, a girl they named Marguerite, and on August 2, 1784, Louis married Françoise-Agnes at St. Francis Xavier church in Vincennes. The couple went on to have 11 more children over the next 20 years.

Louis was part of a French Creole culture that was vastly different from that of the Americans who were moving into Vincennes. French farmers kept their cattle on common land, a system that had to be abandoned under the Americans. They didn't live on their farms, but instead had their houses clustered together with their neighbors in town; Louis' house in 1790 was on a lot that was little more than 1,000 square feet. Living in close proximity to each other, families sought to balance farming with enjoying a lively social life.

With the rush of new settlers moving to the Vincennes area seeking to buy land, the new American government needed to verify the French settlers’ ancient claims to their property. It was a process that dragged out for years. Louis had two land claims rejected, one for 400 acres and one for 68 acres. A claim that he had for 136 acres was validated, so Louis did end up with some land, but it was too much work to clear much of it, and he sold it off within a few years. For the French settlers, this period began a downward spiral, where they found themselves selling off acres to pay living expenses, and it wasn’t long before their tracts of land shrunk to small amounts.

Louis died in 1835, and by that time, the French settlers of Vincennes were in the minority. With few exceptions, non-French people formed the leadership and society of Vincennes. It was a sad outcome for the people who were the earliest settlers of the town.

1. Marguerite Ravellette — B. 25 Jan 1784, Vincennes, Virginia Territory; M. Jean Mominy, 16 Aug 1802, Vincennes, Indiana

2. Louis Ravellette — B. 20 Feb 1786, Vincennes, Virginia Territory; M. Helene Campeau, 1 Oct 1810, Vincennes, Indiana

3. Pierre Ravellette — B. 24 Jan 1788, Vincennes, Northwest Territory

4. Antoine Ravellette — B. about Oct 1790, Vincennes, Northwest Territory; M. Adelaide Cabassier, 6 Jul 1818, Vincennes, Indiana

5. François Ravellette — B. 9 Nov 1791, Vincennes, Northwest Territory; D. 7 Dec 1857, Vincennes, Indiana; M. Elizabeth Turpin (1798-1835)

6. Andre Ravellette — B. 4 Feb 1794, Vincennes, Northwest Territory; D. 17 Oct 1794, Vincennes, Northwest Territory

7. Françoise Ravellette — B. 19 Aug 1795, Vincennes, Northwest Territory; François Bono, 16 May 1816, Vincennes, Indiana

8. Marie-Theotiste Ravellette — B. 19 Aug 1795, Vincennes, Northwest Territory; M. Pierre Renaud dit Deslauriers, 12 Nov 1813, Vincennes, Indiana

9. Agnes Ravellette — B. 30 Sep 1797, Vincennes, Northwest Territory

10. Helene Ravellette — B. 25 Feb 1799, Vincennes, Northwest Territory

11. Marie-Amable Ravellette — B. 13 Jun 1802, Vincennes, Indiana Territory; M. Pierre Meteyer, 2 Oct 1820, Vincennes, Indiana

12. Elizabeth Ravellette — B. 26 Mar 1804, Vincennes, Indiana Territory; M. Pierre Cabassier, 24 Jul 1820, Vincennes, Indiana

History of Knox and Daviess Counties, Indiana, 1886
St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church Records: Baptisms 1749-1838, Barbara Schull Wolfe, 1999
St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church Records: Marriages and Deaths 1749-1838, Barbara Schull Wolfe, 1999
Indiana: A Redemption from Slavery, Jacob Piatt Dunn, 1888
American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States, Part 8, Volume 7, 1860

A Farming Heritage in Quebec — Joseph Mignot dit LaBrie

B. about 1782 in (probably) St-Jean-Port-Joli, Quebec
M. 19 Oct 1812 in St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy, Quebec
Wife: Marie-Charlotte Dubois
D. July 15, 1846 in St-Norbert, in Quebec

Joseph Mignot dit LaBrie's ancestors farmed in Quebec for generations. He was born to Joseph-François Mignot dit LaBrie and Marguerite Chouinard in about 1782 probably in St-Jean-Port-Joli, Quebec. His parents had been married there in 1779, but Joseph’s baptism is missing from church records. He had at least two siblings, plus three half-siblings from his father’s previous marriage.

Joseph didn't get married until he was about 30-years-old. His bride, Marie-Charlotte Dubois was only 15, and the wedding took place on October 19, 1812 in St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy. For a few years, Joseph had a farm in the same community where he was married. By 1822, the family moved to Arthabaska, but in 1825, the census showed them back in St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy, living next to the households of Marie-Charlotte’s brother and uncle. The couple had a total of 12 children born between 1813 and 1838; only the first-born and the last-born children died young.

In about 1830, Joseph moved his family to a farm near where he was born, in St-Jean, Dorchester County. The 1831 census indicated that he was the proprietor of a 60-acre farm, and he paid rent for it amounting to 3/8 of his earnings. His farm was under an antiquated tenant system where farmers leased their land from seigneurs (or landlords); within a generation, the system would be abolished.

On 24 acres of his farm, Joseph produced 100 bushels of potatoes that year. While many of his neighbors grew wheat, oats and peas, potatoes were Joseph’s only crop. The farm also had 8 head of cattle, 2 horses and 4 pigs. Marie-Charlotte’s brother and uncle were living close to them just as they were in St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy. Joseph and his family are missing from records of the 1842 census, likely because the originals have been lost for many communities in Quebec.

Joseph died in St-Norbert on July 15, 1846 and was buried at the church cemetery there. His wife Marie-Charlotte passed away sometime before 1864. None of Joseph’s surviving sons remained in Quebec, with most of them ending up in the United States; if they became farmers, their land was far away from the fields their father had planted. 

1. Joseph LaBrie – B. 19 Sep 1813, St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy, Quebec; D. 19 Dec 1820, St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy, Quebec

2. Genevieve LaBrie – B. about 1815, Quebec; D. 15 Mar 1881, West St. Paul, Minnesota; M. Flavien Roberge (1813-1894), 8 Nov 1834, St-Jean Chrysostome, Quebec

3. Louis LaBrie – B. Nov 1818, Quebec; D. 22 Feb 1903, Minneapolis, Minnesota; M. Julie Fortier (1821-1904), 14 Sep 1841, Sylvestre, Quebec

4. Benjamin LaBrie – B. about 1821, Quebec; D. Barron County, Wisconsin; M. Marie Vachom, 3 Nov 1864, Tlingwick, Quebec

5. Henriette LaBrie – B. 9 Sep 1822, Arthabaska, Quebec; M. Jean-Baptiste Boucher dit Morency (1819-1873), 27 Apr 1841, Sylvestre, Quebec

6. Jean-Baptiste LaBrie – B. 9 Sep 1822, Arthabaska, Quebec; D. 13 Jun 1905, Barron County, Wisconsin; M. Perpetue Demers (1827-1899), 27 Feb 1843, Blandford, Quebec

7. Marie-Marguerite LaBrie – B. about 8 Mar 1826, St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy, Quebec; D. about 1888; M. Olivier Demers (~1822-?), 12 Jan 1847, Arthabaska, Quebec

8. François A. LaBrie – B. 15 Jan 1828, St-Joseph-de-la-Pointe-Lévy, Quebec; D. 27 Dec 1909, Minneapolis, Minnesota; M. Eliza Furlong (1830-1912), 23 Jan 1854, St. Paul, Minnesota

9. Marie-Adelaide LaBrie – B. 15 May 1832, St-Jean Chrysostome, Quebec; D. 24 Apr 1915, Yreka, California; M. François Dassisi LeMay (1820-1880), 7 Feb 1853, Ramsey County, Minnesota

10. Edouard LaBrie – B. about 18 Jul 1834, St-Jean Chrysostome, Quebec; M. (1) Catherine Couture, 24 Sep 1860, Tlingwick, Quebec; (2) Josephine

11. Marie-Heloise LaBrie – B. about 16 Oct 1838, St-Jean Chrysostome, Quebec; D. Jul 1839, Quebec

Quebec Catholic Parish Registers, 1621-1979,
U.S Federal Census records, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880 and 1900
1825 and 1831 Canada census records
Canada Census (Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta) 1906
Seigneurial System, The Canadian Encyclopedia (website)

Friday, July 13, 2018

Dutchman Imprisoned in New France – Denys Hegeman

B. 1658 in Flatbush, New Netherland
M. about 1680 in Maine
Wife: Grace Dollen
D. about 1702 in New York

Denys Hegeman had the unusual distinction of spending time in three 17th century colonies: New Netherland, New England and New France. He was born in about 1658 in Flatbush, New Netherland. His parents, Adrian Hegeman and Catharina Margetts, migrated from Holland in 1652. Denys had six brothers and one sister.

In 1673, Denys Hegeman was a private in Captain Stemnek's company of the Reformed Dutch Church in Flatbush. He moved to Pemaquid, Maine, possibly having been sent there as a member of the militia, and in about 1680, married Grace Dollen, a woman born to English settlers there. In a valuation made October 14, 1687, Denys had an estate in the town of Jamestown, Maine. Another undated document, supposedly about 1688, mention is made of "a Certaine Tract of upland lying upon ye westwards side of Pemaquid River between ye lotts of Henry Hedger & Denise Higaman."

Denys and Grace had four children born in Pemaquid between 1681 and 1688. Then on August 2, 1689, Pemaquid was assaulted by the Indians, and among the inhabitants taken prisoner were Denys' wife Grace and their daughter Jane. It’s unknown what became of the child, but Grace was held captive by the Indians for three years. She was moved from place to place, then she was taken to New France and sold to the French, who held her in Quebec City for another two and a half years.

Meanwhile Denys Hegeman returned to New York, probably with the rest of their children; his name is on a document from April 16, 1690 regarding his mother's estate. In 1691, he obtained permission from Governor Slaughter to make a trip to Pemaquid to see if he could make contact with Grace again. The following year, Governor Slaughter arranged for a small ship to take Denys to Pemaquid. The intention was to find a way to deal with the Indians who took Grace. When he arrived, though, he was taken prisoner by a Frenchman and transported to Quebec City.

While Denys was in Quebec City, he was joined by Grace, and on March 4, 1693, their son Joseph was born. Denys was then moved to France, leaving his wife and son behind in New France. Later he wrote, in a petition to authorities to get Grace released, "I have been a prisoner in all said place about three years to the great hardship durance & damage of your petitioner who is a lame man having but one arm." It is not known when he lost his arm.

Denys was released from captivity in about 1694 and returned to Flatbush. Grace left Quebec City on September 4th, spent the winter in Port-Royal, Acadia, and made it to Boston in May 1695. She returned to Denys in Flatbush where they had a son Jacobus born in 1699. The family was listed in the census consisting of one man, one woman and five children.

It is believed that Denys died in about August of 1702 because there is a record showing that money was paid for his shroud. Grace had a child born the following year and she named him Denys. On April 13, 1703, she filed a petition asking for money as a reward for the years of service of her late husband.

1. Dollens Hegeman – B. about 1681, Pemaquid, Maine; D. 1760; M. Geertruydt ?

2. Adriaen Hegeman – B. about 1683, Pemaquid, Maine; D. Aug 1762; M. (1) Elizabeth Van Wyck (?-bef 1719), 15 Dec 1706, Flatbush, New York; (2) Sarah ?, about 1719

3. Catharina Hegeman –  B. about 1688, Pemaquid, Maine; M. (1) Hendrick Vonck (1681-bef 1735), 12 May 1706, Flatbush, New York; M. (2) Anke Lefferts Haughwot, 30 July 1735

4. Jane Hegeman – B. about 1687; D. about 1699, (probably) Maine

5. Joseph Hegeman – B. 4 Mar 1693, Quebec City, New France; M. Alida Andriesz, 4 Jun 1714, Flatbush, New York

6. Jacobus Hegeman – B. 18 Jan 1699; D. 25 Sep 1736; M. Jannetje Van Vegten (1701-1778), 13 May 1721

7. Denys Hegeman – B. about Jun 1703

"The Tribulations of Denys Hegeman," Richard W. Cook, Genealogies of New Jersey Families: A-Z, pre-American notes on New Netherland families, 1996
Register of the Early Settlers of Kings County, Long Island, N.Y., Teunis G. Bergen
Genealogy website of John Blythe Dobson, which cites many sources

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Founding a Colonial Tavern – John Lyman

B. 1 Aug 1660 in Northampton, Massachusetts
M. 19 Apr 1687 in Northampton, Massachusetts
Wife: Mindwell Shelton
D. 8 Nov 1740 in Northampton, Massachusetts

John Lyman not only passed his home to his descendants, he passed his profession as well. He was born in Northampton, Massachusetts on August 1, 1660, the oldest son in the family of John Lyman and Dorcas Plumb. The Lymans had settled in Northampton only a couple years before John’s birth; he had two older sisters and would have seven younger siblings. John’s father was a leader in the militia and was a lieutenant during King Philip’s War.

John married another Northampton resident, Mindwell Sheldon, on April 19, 1687; she had been previously married to John Pomeroy, who died two years earlier. The newlyweds settled at the southern end of Northampton in a place called South Farms, not far from Smith’s Ferry (the location is in present-day Holyhoke). Ten children were born there between 1688 and 1713. Along with running a farm, John opened up his home to travelers coming and going to Northampton. It’s not known exactly when John began what became known as Lyman’s Tavern, but it was said that he operated it until the end of his life.

During the 1690s, John served in the militia and was involved in King William’s War. England and France were at war in Europe, which led to threats of invasion from New France. John was one of 19 men from Northampton who went to Deerfield, the northernmost town in western Massachusetts. On September 16, 1696, Indians who sided with the French raided settlers nearby, capturing and killing several people including women and children. John was very likely part of the force who pursued the attackers afterwards.

John returned home to South Farms and resumed his life as farmer and innkeeper. His son Phineas attended Yale in 1725, but he died while a student there. John’s wife Mindwell passed away in 1735, and John died on November 8, 1740. After his death, his son Elias took over the homestead, continuing as a tavern keeper, and when he died in 1790, his son Joel took over the business. It was said that Lyman’s Tavern remained in the family for over 125 years.

1. Mindwell Lyman — B. 30 Aug 1688, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 4 Apr 1713, Hadley, Massachusetts; M. John Montague (1681-1722)

2. Dorcas Lyman — B. 11 Aug 1690, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 15 Nov 1770, South Hadley, Massachusetts; M. John Alvord (1685-1757), 29 Dec 1708, Northampton, Massachusetts

4. John Lyman — B. 12 Oct 1693, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 3 Jan 1783, Hadley, Massachusetts; M. Abigail Moseley (1697-1750), 1 Jan 1717, Northampton, Massachusetts

3. Mary Lyman — B. 1696, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 3 Nov 1778, Enfield, Connecticut; M. (1) John Pomeroy (~1695-?); (2) Samuel Dwight (1696-1763), 18 Jun 1719

5. Esther Lyman — B. 15 Feb 1698, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 23 Aug 1736, Connecticut; M. Benjamin Talcott (1702-1785), 26 Aug 1724

6. Gideon Lyman — B. 19 Mar 1700, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 3 Apr 1775, Northampton, Massachusetts; M. (1) Esther Strong (1702-1740); (2) Catherine King (1701-1791)

7. Elizabeth Lyman — B. 8 Dec 1702, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 19 Apr 1778; M. (1) Abner Moseley (1699-1766), 5 Jun 1722, Glastonbury, Connecticut; (2) John Potwine (1698-1792), 1771

8. Phineas Lyman — B. May 1706, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 10 Feb 1725, New Haven, Connecticut

9. Elias Lyman — B. May 1710, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 17 Apr 1790; M. Hannah Allen (1714-1771), 1736

10. Gad Lyman — B. 13 Feb 1713, Northampton, Massachusetts; D. 24 Oct 1791, Goshen, Massachusetts; M. Thankful Pomeroy (1711-1790), 22 Jun 1738, Northampton, Massachusetts

Massachusetts Births and Christenings, 1639-1915,
History of Northampton, Massachusetts: From its Settlement in 1654, Vol. 1, James Russell Trumbull and Seth Pomeroy, 1898
Antiquities, Historicals and Graduates of Northampton, Solomon Clark, 1882