Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Chapter 67 - Our Coon (MacCoone) Family Ancestors and their Emans and Van Salee Ancestors

My 9th great grandfather, John MacCoone (1630-1705), was undoubtedly one of my very few ancestors if not my only ancestor, who came to America from England against his wishes. He was, along with many other Scottish soldiers who were prisoners, forced onto a crowded ship in the year 1651 or early 1652 which then sailed to America where they, the prisoners, were all forced to work as unpaid servants for a period of up to six to eight years to help pay for their unwanted voyage. John was a young boy, barely 21 years old, when he joined a Scottish military army. He was undoubtedly soon forced to engage in a battle that was quickly lost by his side wherein thousands of his fellow soldiers were killed in action, and hundreds more died when they were forced to march south in England as prisoners. There they soon boarded a ship headed for America where again dozens more died during their crowded voyage across the Atlantic Ocean. Not a good beginning for anyone much less one of my great grandfathers. At least he survived.

English Civil Wars
Without going into a lot of details, it should be noted that the war in England now known as the English Civil Wars started back around the time that John MacCoone was only three years old. It began as a major war between the then King of England, King Charles I, and the Parliament of England under the leadership of Oliver Cromwell, an intensely religious Puritan man. Numerous battles occurred for many years until King Charles I was captured in the year 1648 and then tried for high treason, found guilty, and then beheaded on 30 January 1649.  King Charles I's son, King Charles II, was then proclaimed by some to be the next King of England, a fact that was not accepted by Oliver Cromwell and his followers who currently were controlling the English government. Jumping ahead a bit, Charles II hoping to regain control of England and becoming the king to replace his father, joined forces with the Scottish army in 1650 which undoubtedly included in their forces my 9th great grandfather, John MacCoone, as one of its many soldiers, and they soon moved south against the British army. Cromwell's English forces defeated them at the Battle of Dunbar on 3 September 1650. This is where many believe that John MacCoone and many other Scottish soldiers were captured. It is written that during the many years of the English Civil Wars from 1641 until about 1651 over 100,000 people were killed and it was not until 1660 that Charles II was formally acclaimed as the King of England. At this point however, the British Parliament and not the king now strongly controlled the governing of England as it obviously still does to this day.

Rendering of Cambridge around year 1650
Harvard in bottom of rendering
The exact date of John MacCoone's arrival in America is not known for certain although most historians agree that it took place sometime in early 1652. Exactly where John was taken and for whom he may have worked as an indentured servant after his arrival in America is not known and in fact the first record of John in America was his marriage to a woman named Deborah Bush that took place in Cambridge, Massachusett on 8 November 1656 almost five years following his arrival. Apparently his role as an indentured servant was shorter than the average. Cambridge was originally founded by Puritans back in 1630 so at first we found it interesting that John MacCoone who was a Scottish Presbyterian and who had fought against the English Puritans would have spent most of his life in America living in the Cambridge area. We also learned that Harvard University (then Harvard College) that was founded in Cambridge in 1636 was organized initially as a place to train Puritan clergymen. Subsequently however in 1654, Harvard abandoned Puritanism in favor of the "English Baptist faith" which we concluded would mean that our John MacCoone's Presbyterian faith might have blended in more readily with the other local faiths at the time of his first marriage in 1656. It is also very possible that John as a young man when he left Scotland for America, had not retained any strong loyalty to the Presbyterian faith and there were definitely no local Presbyterian churches in his area of Cambridge at least in the early part of his life. We assume of course, and it would seem highly likely, that John's first wife, Deborah Bush, was a daughter of a Puritan family especially considering the fact that Deborah's parents were among the earlier settlers of Cambridge. Whether or not they were Puritans we do not know for certain, although one thing that we did learn in our research is that Deborah's parents are often credited with being ancestors of two of our former Presidents, George W. Bush and his father George H.W. Bush. Unfortunately while Deborah gave birth to four children before her early death on 20 February 1664, none of these children were my great grandparents and consequently I do not share any common ancestors with these two former Presidents.

Almost all family trees and stories about our great grandfather John MacCoone report that he was married three times, first in 1656 to a girl named Deborah Bush, second in 1665 to a girl named Sarah Ford or Wood, and then after Sarah's death, he married in 1668 my 9th great grandmother, a girl named Mary (last name unknown). While at first we had no reason to question these three marriages, we were a little confused later after reviewing his final Will written just before his death in 1705 wherein he wrote ". . . that all the amongst all rest of my Estate shalbe Equally divided my children both by my former & Latter wife, .." This statement in his will seems to imply that he had only two wives, a former wife who died and his current wife Mary whom he mentions in his will and who was living at the time of his death. His will also gives us the names of only two of his children, his first or possibly his second oldest daughter Deborah and his oldest son John. While he clearly states in his will that there are other children, their names are not provided including the name of my 8th great grandfather and the son of his wife Mary, Peter MacCoon (1673-1759) who was born on 21 February 1673. Many of the family trees imply that with Mary he had at least seven or eight additional children including his last child, a son named Joseph who was born in 1683 when John was 52 years old and Mary probably not that much younger. What this implies is that we really do not have a lot of proven accurate details about the marriages of John MacCoone and the number and names of his children. Fortunately almost everyone states that one of his children was named Peter MacCoon.

Considering the controversy regarding the number and names of his wives, it is also not surprising that we could learn little about the life of our John MacCoone. We spent almost an hour looking through a book titled "History of Cambridge, Massachusetts" written by a man named Lucius R. Paige back in 1877, and we found no mention of a man named John MacCoone. It is possible of course, that we may have missed seeing his name but in either case it is clear that our John MacCoone was not a major leader within his community. This fact should not be surprising considering that he was a Scotsman and not an English Puritan. In various other sites we found references to his land purchases in Cambridge beginning as early as 1665 as well as in 1676, 1683, and 1688. The 1676 land purchase was made from the wife of the late Richard Wood, a woman named Sarah Wood, who some family historians suggest was either the second wife of our John MacCoone or her daughter Sarah was John's second wife. Who knows? There is also a family historian who reports that our John MacCoone was a juryman in Cambridge in 1681 and on the Cambridge tax rolls in the year 1688.

What is perhaps more interesting and perhaps more confusing was to read that our John MacCoone was an early landowner and some suggest even an early resident in the town of Westerly, Rhode Island located almost 100 miles southwest of Cambridge on the Atlantic coastline. These historians claim that as early as 1661 he took an Oath of Allegiance in Westerly and agreed to purchase land and that by 1669 he was actually listed as an inhabitant. Considering that he was not a Puritan but was living in the largely Puritan community of Cambridge, moving out of Cambridge during this time period was not that unusual. However, considering the subsequent land purchases that he made in Cambridge that we previously mentioned and considering the fact that all of his many children were born in Cambridge, a large family move to the remote and faraway settlement of Westerly, Rhode Island would seem highly unlikely. On the other hand, both of his two older sons eventually moved to and later married women in Westerly suggesting that it is entirely possible that their father had indeed purchased land in Westerly which he eventually years later turned over to his sons. It is possible of course, that if our John MacCoone had indeed had plans to move to Westerly, after considering his large family, the wilderness of the area, and the King Philip's War against the Indians that took place between 1675 and 1678, he was soon convinced to remain in Cambridge with his large family. Our John MacCoone did in fact remain in Cambridge until his death on 8 October 1705 at the age of 74 years old. Strangely perhaps, there are no records that we could uncover that tell us when my great grandmother Mary died although it is generally assumed that she outlived her husband and undoubtedly they are both buried side by side in a cemetery near their hometown.

Gravestone of Thomas Coon (1700-1761)
Unfortunately very little is known about the life of their son and my 8th great grandfather, Peter MacCoon, and much of what is written about him seems to be wrong. For example, while we know that he was born in Cambridge in the year 1673, many of the family trees on show that he moved to Westerly in Washington County, Rhode Island probably with his brothers John and Daniel and later married a girl named Anne Larkin in the year 1692. The problem with this marriage is that additional research shows that Anne Larkin was actually the wife of Peter's older brother, John MacCoon, who actually married Anne in the year 1692. It seems that Peter did get married sometime around that same time period but the name of his wife is unknown. All that we know is that she gave birth to a son, our 7th great grandfather, Thomas Coon (1700-1761), in the year 1700 and she may very well have died before her and Peter had another child. Nothing more is written about our Peter MacCoon other than his death is recorded as having taking place on 20 Match in 1759 in the town of Bound Brook in Somerset County, New Jersey. When and why Peter moved to New Jersey is not known although it obviously took place sometime before the year 1720 which is the year that his son Thomas Coon was married in Bound Brook to my 7th great grandmother, Catharine Emans (1701-1791). It is interesting that Peter MacCoon moved with his son to Bound Brook which from Westerly, Rhode Island is a distance of almost 200 miles. Quite a distance to travel back in the early 1700s. What is also interesting is that Bound Brook was originally settled as a Dutch community back in the year 1681 so it is hard to imagine what may have motivated Peter to move there especially so far away from his many brothers and sisters many of whom were currently living in the Westerly, Rhode Island area. What Peter may have done for a living is unknown although Bound Brook was originally noted for its apple orchards so Peter may very well have been a farmer who raised apples. There is also no evidence that Peter ever remarried which would be quite unusual. What is known is that he lived to the advanced age of 86 years old, finally dying on the 20th day of March in the year 1759. Where he is actually buried is also unknown but hopefully he lived a good life before his eventual death at a ripe old age.

We mentioned above that our Thomas Coon married my 7th great grandmother Catherine Emans in the year 1720, however we need to point out to be completely honest, that there is some controversy as to whether Catherine's surname was in fact "Emans". Here are some of the issues that lead some to question whether Thomas's wife surname was in fact Emans. While Catherine Emans is reported to have been born in Gravestead in Kings County, Long Island she undoubtedly moved with her father and her stepmother to Colts Neck, New Jersey when she was still a child. Colts Neck is about 30 miles or so south of her future husband's home in Bound Brook, New Jersey so how they actually met is somewhat of a mystery considering that 30 miles was a fairly long distance in the early 1700s. There is also the claim by a few family historians that Catherine Emans actually married a man named Abraham Birdsall although after some time spend trying to uncover information about a man named Abraham Birdsall born around the year 1700, we learned absolutely nothing. One of the family tree items that convinced us that Thomas Coon had in fact very likely married a girl named Catherine Emans is that they named one of their sons Abraham Coon obviously after Catherine's father, Abraham Emans (1670-1756), my 8th great grandfather and they also named one of their sons John after Catherine's oldest brother. These names may be just coincidences as they are obviously very common names, although it did help convince us that is it was worth reviewing some of our Emans ancestors, Catherine's parents and grandparents.

Old map showing location of Gravesend on 
southwestern end of Long Island
Catherine Emans' great grandfather and my 10th great grandfather, Andries Emans (1614-1661), came to America from his home in Leyden, Holland in the year 1661 sailing on the ship St Jean Baptist and eventually landing on Long Island, New York, home of many Dutch families since the early 1620s. Traveling with Andries Emans were his wife, whose name is unknown, and his four sons including my 9th great grandfather, Jan Emans (1639-1715) who was at the time of their arrival in his early 20s. They soon settled in the town of Gravesend which was located in the southwestern end of Long Island and had been originally founded back in 1645 primarily by English immigrants who were trying to seek religious freedom. While the Dutch were the original settlers in the area, they very much encouraged new settlers even if they were English as the area was heavily populated by Indians and new Dutch settlers had been rapidly diminishing by this time period. As it eventually turned out in any case, the English assumed control of "New Amsterdam" in 1664 only three years following the arrival of our Emans ancestors. The Emans family settlement in Gravesend obviously suggests that our Emans family were actual of English descent and that they had originally moved to Holland like so many others to escape the attacks on Puritan families in England that was so common in the early 1600s. Unfortunately, my great grandfather, Andries Emans, soon died following his arrival in America.

His son Jan Emans married not long after his family's arrival in America a girl by the name of Sarah Antonise van Salee (1636-1715), my 9th great grandmother. Normally we may not have spent a large amount of time researching Sarah's ancestry as her parents had arrived from Amsterdam, Holland in the year 1630 and normally we would expect that very little would be known about her ancestry. We were amazed however, to discover that both her father and her grandfather had separate and very detailed stories about their lives on Wikipedia and multiple other websites. Her father's name and my 10th great grandfather was Anthony Janszoon van Salee (1607-1676), and her grandfather's name and my 11th great grandfather was Jan Janszoon van Haarlem (abt. 1570- abt. 1641). It would be foolish to simply copy what is written on these Wikipedia websites so we will only summarize the stories about each of their lives. We do strongly suggest however, that anyone interested in their ancestry should read these very interesting and detailed family histories on Wikipedia or one of the other many websites.

Pirate Jan Janszoon
Much is written about my great grandfather, Jan Janszoon van Haarlem, simply because in the early part of the 17th century he became a very powerful and a very wealthy pirate. Jan was born around the year 1570 in the village of Haarlem in North Holland. His birth was followed several years later by an attack on his town by the Spanish army which ultimately led to a major defeat and surrender of the town followed by the death of many of its local citizens plus the destruction of much of the village. This was all part of a war between the Dutch and the Spanish that took place between the years 1568 and 1648 called the Eighty Years' War. Much of Jan Janszoon's life took place during this time period and this continuous war no doubt had much to do with his ultimately became a ship's captain and soon afterwards, a pirate.

Jan Janszoon is known to have married a Dutch girl named Soutgen Cave around the year 1595 and they are believed to have had at least one child and possibly two before Jan deserted his family in the year 1600. What he apparently did at that point was to become a Dutch privateer who then sailed on ships that attacked Spanish ships, all part of the long lasting war that had been taking place between these two counties during the past 30 plus years. Very surprisingly, Jan is believed to have soon married or at least became very involved with a dark skinned Moorish woman believed to be named Margarita, my 11th great grandmother, whom he meet in Cartagena, Spain sometime in the later part of the year 1600. With Margarita he is believed to have had four children born between the years 1602 and 1608 including my 10th great grandfather, Anthony Janszoon van Salee, their third child, whom we mentioned above.

Map showing location of Sale in Morocco
on the western coastline of Africa.
Obviously Jan's role as a privateer was occasionally interrupted by his life as a father most likely during the winter months. Since there are already so many stories online about my great grandfather, we are not going to go into a lot of details about his life as a pirate other than to note that after his being captured in the year 1618 at one of the Canary Islands off the northwestern coast of Africa, he was taken to Algiers as a captive. Algiers is located in the present day country of Algeria located on the southern coastline of the Mediterranean Sea. It was here that he was soon forced to or at least he was soon convinced to convert to becoming a Turk or a Muslim, and with this change his role as a pirate meant that he now advanced his actions against all of the European powers. In the year 1619 he moved to the ancient port of Sale' located on the Atlantic coastline of Morocco, Africa almost 800 miles west of Algiers. It was here in Sale' that he soon became the leader of a government that consisted of 14 pirate leaders and hundreds of pirate sailers. Our 11th great grandfather, Jan Janszoon van Haarlem remained a powerful leader and pirate until his death sometime on or just after the year 1641. We also need to point out that records show that his son and my 10th great grandfather, Anthony Janszoon van Salee, was with his father in the year 1624 and possibly even earlier, and it is very likely that he and his brothers also joined with their dad on his many piracy activities at least during their youth.

Jan's son Anthony was around 22 years old when he made the decision to move to America. Undoubtedly he had his father's approval as the numerous biographies about the life of my 10th great grandfather report that he was quite wealthy as a new resident in New Amsterdam in the year of his arrival in 1630. Obviously at this young age he had obtained his wealth from his pirate father and perhaps from his own services as a pirate. Most historical records tell us that Anthony Janszoon van Salee married a German girl named Grietse (or Grietje) Reyniers (1602-1669), my 10th great grandmother) in Amsterdam either shortly before he departed for America or onboard the ship headed to America. She was older than Anthony by five years and it was her second marriage as her first husband had apparently died.  New Amsterdam had only been settled six years before their arrival in 1630 and the small fort that served as the trading center within the small village had only been constructed two years earlier in 1628.  Almost all of the residents of New Amsterdam at this point were Dutch so Anthony with his dark skin and Moorish appearance and his German wife, immediately stood out in a very negative way. It also did not help Anthony one bit when the local residents soon discovered that Anthony was not brought up as a Christian.

Here again, much has been written about the life of Anthony Janszoon van Salee and his wife and the stories are easily found online. For that reason we do not believe it necessary to send a lot of time trying to describe his life in America. We need to point out however, that neither he nor his wife were readily accepted in New Amsterdam. One of the reasons was due to the simple fact that neither he nor his wife were considered to be Dutch and also he was not a born as a Christian despite the fact that he tried to attend the local Dutch Reformed Church. In fact, it was the local church minister who was one of our ancestors' biggest critics. Grietse was accused by the church leader of having wild sexual ways and even being a whore. Anthony was taken to court multiple times with accusations such as  pointing a gun at slave overseers, stealing wood, slandering multiple people, and allowing his dog to kill a neighbor's dog. It is written that during the short period that Anthony and Grietse lived in New Amsterdam, Anthony was taken to court more than any of the other local citizens and thus by the year 1638, they were both ordered to leave New Amsterdam. After fighting this issue in court for a year or so, they were allowed to move south of New Amsterdam where they eventually settling in the southwest corner of Long Island in a settlement later to be known as Gravesend located at the southern end of the future borough of Brooklyn. Here they purchased a large amount of land, over 200 acres, and raised their family which consisted of four daughters including my 9th great grandmother, Sarah Antonise Jansen van Salee (1635-1715), future wife of Jan Emans as we previously mentioned.  My great grandmother Grietse Reyniers died in the year 1669. Anthony, perhaps just to show that he was still an important man, returned to New Amsterdam after his wife's death, and there he soon married for a second time. He eventually died in the year 1676 and is buried in New Amsterdam. Anthony and his father have to be among the most strange and unusual of all of my family ancestors and if they are your ancestors as well, we strongly recommend that you read more online about their very unusual lives.

Their daughter Sarah married Jan (or later known as John) Emans shortly following his arrival in America and his eventually settlement in Gravesend sometime after the year 1661. They were both in their mid to late 20s at the time of their marriage and we have to believe that it was possibly an arranged marriage as they obviously had known each other for only a short period. Nevertheless, Jan Emans eventually became a fairly important individual in their town of Gravesend. Historical records list him as a town clerk, deputy mayor, constable, clerk of the courts, court juror, as well as his fulltime job as a master cooper over the numerous years he resided in Gravesend up until his eventual death at the age of around 76 in the year 1715. My 9th great grandmother, Sarah van Salee, on the other hand was very busy as a mother having at least seven children born between the years 1665 and 1677 including my 8th great grandfather Abraham Emans (1670-1756). Unfortunately it is written that Sarah died not long after the birth of her last child at the fairly young age of only 45 years old. Obviously almost continuous childbirth and constant child care was a lot of hard work especially in the 1600s. It is written that Jan Emans married shortly following my grandmother's early death and had a least one more child with his second wife.

Around the time of the marriage of my 8th great grandfather, Abraham Emans, to my 8th great grandmother, Rebecca Stillwell (1675-1702) that took place in Gravesend on 20 October 1693, the population of what was then called Kings County in the western end of Long Island had grown to around 2,000 people. About half of these settlers were still Dutch and the others came from Germany, England, France, and Scandinavia. Also a large portion of the population were black African slaves and many of the farmers in the area including possibly our Emans ancestors were slave holders and used their slaves to work on their farm lands. In the year 1700 the greater New York area with its population of almost 5,000 people was considering to be the second largest city in America, second only to Boston with its population of around 6,700.

Rebecca's grandfather and my 10th great grandfather was a man named Nicholas Stillwell (Abt.1603-1671) who is recorded as being among the earliest settlers of Gravesend arriving sometime around the late 1630s. He traveled with his family including his son, my 9th great grandfather, Nicholas Stillwell (Jr.) (1636-1715) who obviously was still a baby when they arrived in America. Nicholas Sr was apparently a Protestant and thus to escape religious persecution in England which at that point in the late 16th century was under the control of a Roman Catholic king, he, like the many English "Puritans" who had also left England, moved with his family to Holland. There in Holland he apparently offered his services as a soldier to Elizabeth Stuart, Queen of Bohemia, and her husband King Frederick V and then he fought in what is now known as the Thirty Years War (1618-1648) which consisted of many battles between the various Protestant and Catholic states in Europe. The Thirty Years War continued until the year 1648, so obviously our Nicholas Stillwell was tired of fighting or perhaps losing battles including the Battle of White Mountain which took place in 1620 and he eventually left Europe and immigrated to America. Most likely a very wise decision.

As we previously mentioned, Nicholas Stillwell was a very early settler in Gravesend where he owned a considerable amount of land and operated a farm as did many of the original settlers. It is also written that he did not give up his role as a soldier as he fought and commanded soldiers both in a war against the Indians in Virginia and later he served as a commander and lieutenant in charge of the expedition against the Indians in what is now known as the Esopus War which took place on Long Island in the year 1660 and again in 1663. Our great grandfather was apparently a well known and probably a highly respected individual and it is said that he was a friend and confident of the then Governor of the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam, a man named Peter Stuyvesant.  Nicholas Stillwell Sr. died on 28 December 1671.

Nicholas' son and my 9th great grandfather and the father of Rebecca Stillwell, Nicholas Stillwell (1636-1715), like his father was also a soldier and an important individual in the Gravesend community. He served as a justice and a constable for a number of years and from 1691 until 1698 he was a member of the colonial assemble from King's County which by that point was under the control of the English. In one story about his life they wrote that "he was a man who received many honors during his lifetime and he was also well educated which was an exception in the times in which he lived." Nicholas Stillwell Jr married a recent widow and my 9th great grandmother, Catherine (Catalyntje) Huyberts (1644?-1703) in the year 1671 and together they had around seven children including their second child and my great grandmother Rebecca Stillwell. We do need to point out that there is a lot of confusion about the birth and death dates of my great grandmother Catherine although considering the historical time period this is not all that unusual. Her death date of 1703 is probably correct in that many historical writings state that Nicholas married a woman named Elizabeth in 1703 and her name Elizabeth is mentioned in Nicholas' will dated 5 March 1715. Unfortunately not mentioned in Nicholas' will is his daughter Rebecca who had died a few years earlier than her father back in 1702. What is mentioned in his will however, is his granddaughter Catherine Emans, daughter of his daughter Rebecca and her husband and my 8th great grandfather Abraham Emans.

Abraham and Rebecca had five children together including their youngest child and only daughter, Catherine Emans (1701-1791), my 7th great grandmother. Unfortunately my great grandmother Rebecca died shortly following the birth of Catherine. She was only 24 years old at the time of her death.  Abraham remarried shortly following Rebecca's death and had six additional children before his own death in 1756 at the age of 86 years old.  It was somewhat fascinating to discover that Abraham's second wife, a woman named Grietje Willemsen, just happened to be one of my 7th great aunts as her parents Willem Willemsen (1653-1722) and Mayken Pieterse Wyckoff (1653-1721), also both residents of Gravesend, were my 7th great grandparents. Small world in the 17th century. It is written that in the year 1713 Abraham and his second wife and their children including his first daughter Catherine, moved to Colts Neck, Monmouth, New Jersey, a distance of around 50 miles. Catherine was only twelve years old at the time.

As we previously mentioned, Catherine Emans married Thomas Coon in the year 1720 in the town of Bound Brook, New Jersey. Unfortunately we uncovered very little information about the lives of my 7th great grandparents other than they lived their entire married lives in Bound Brook and together they had eight children, six boys and two girls including my 6th great grandfather Thomas Coon (1723-1785). Thomas Sr. undoubtedly was a farmer but as far as we could determine he did not participate in managing his community at least not to the extend that his services were ever recorded. Thomas also died at the fairly young age of only 61 and he was likely a Presbyterian as his burial and the burial of his wife Catherine are both listed as being in the Old Presbyterian Cemetery in Bound Brook. One thing that we did find interesting while researching the life of Thomas Coon is that he mentioned three men in his final will all of whom are on my family tree on Jacob Cossart (1701-1772), my 6th great grandfather, and his son Anthony Cozad who married Katherine Coon (1746-1824) who was Catherine's and Thomas's granddaughter and my 5th great grandmother. He also named a man named Thomas Urmston who was one of their son-in-laws as he married their daughter Hanna (or Anna) Coon. Catherine Emans Coon outlived her husband by about thirty years finally dying in the year 1791 at the age of 90 years old. She undoubtedly was well taken care of by one of her children.

Unfortunately we also know very little about the second son of Thomas Sr and Catherine, my 6th great grandfather, a boy named Thomas Coon Jr. Thomas Jr was only 20 years old when he married a girl whose name is believed by many to be Elizabeth Bush. Elizabeth's age at the time of her marriage to Thomas is an even bigger mystery as she is reported to have died at the age of 67 years old in the year 1804 which would make her birth year in 1737. Their marriage year is thought to be around 1743 or 1744 based on the birth year of their first child which would have made her only seven years old when she married which is of course, ridiculous. Obviously not all of our ancestors have good surviving historical records. What is believed to be accurate however, is the claim that Thomas and Elizabeth had nine children together including my 5th great granddaughter, Katherine Coon (1746-1824). It is also well recorded that they spent their entire lives living in Broad Brook and based on Thomas Cook's final will and testament, he, like his father, was not a wealthy individual leaving very little money to his wife and children and to his two oldest sons his land and "the mill". Thomas died at the age of only 62 years old.

One of the very interesting things about life in Bound Brook is that during the American Revolutionary War, Bound Brook was the site of a major engagement between the British and the Americans and records show that our Thomas Coon was a private in Capt. William Moffatt's Company under the leadership of Col. Roderick Frelinghuysen of the 1st Regiment of Somerset County Militia. While it is unlikely that our Thomas Coon played a major role during the war, he has been accepted as a Patriot of the Daughters of the American Revolution, DAR #A025675. The Battle of Bound Brook took place on 13 April 1777 and it consisted of a surprise attack by the British forces consisting of almost 4,000 men against a 500-man garrison of American troops. Most of the 500 Americans escaped before the British took control and plundered their outpost. It is only a guess that our Thomas Coon was with the Americans in the garrison although it would seem highly likely that he was. Thomas Jr. died at the fairly young age of 62 years old in the year 1785 and he and his wife like his parents are both buried in the Old Presbyterian Cemetery in Bound Brook.

Gravestone of Katherine Coon
located in Starkey, Yates Co, NY
As we previously mentioned, our 5th great grandmother, Katherine Coon, married my 5th great grandfather, Anthony Cozad (1740-1790) in 1762 when Katherine at the time was but 16 years old. Their story and the story of our Cozad ancestors is told in Chapter 41 "Our Cozad/Cossart Ancestors" therefore there is no reason to repeat the details. Katherine's and Anthony's daughter and my 4th great grandmother, Hannah Cozad (1782-1880) married a man named Samuel Harpending (1778-1852) and their story is told in Chapter 9 "The Harpending/Baker Family". The family line from our Coon family down to the present day is as follows:

Katherine Coon          m  Anthony Cozad
(1746-1824)                   (1740-1790)
Hannah Cozad           m  Samuel Harpending
(1782-1880)                    (1778-1852)
Asbury Harpending    m  Mary Sayre
(1814-1853)                    (1818-1877)
Hannah Harpending   m  Charles S. Baker
(1842-1891)                    (1835-1891)
Asbury H. Baker        m  Helena Rappleye
(1860-1933)                    (1860-1944)
Charles S. Baker        m  Helen M. Spaulding
(1885-1952)                    (1887-1937)
Charles A. Baker        m  Marian C. Baker
(1916-2000)                     (1916-1973)
Charles A. Baker Jr (1942-  )
Anne Baker Fanton (1943-  )
Joan P. Baker (1950-  )

And so ends another ancestral story . . . . .

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Chapter 66 - Our Hoag Ancestry

We have to admit that after researching and writing over 60 chapters about our ancestors, it has now become a great deal more difficult to uncover new ancestral families with sufficient information about their lives to make it fairly easy to write a reasonably detailed story. For this chapter we have chosen our Hoag family ancestry although we have to admit that while there is much written about this family, what is written is often contradictory. Because of these contradictions we have had trouble knowing exactly which "historical facts" are accurate and which ones are just guesses. So after admitting this problem, we will simply try and write what we believe makes the most sense and hopefully we will not be totally wrong. Perhaps when we encounter one of our Hoag family ancestors up in Heaven many years, I hope, in the future, that they will set us straight as to our accuracy. Anyway, we shall now begin their story.

King Charles 1 became King of England in the year 1625 and in the year 1629 he disposed the British Parliament, and perhaps as a result of his having married a Roman Catholic woman, he soon became a strong opponent of such "reformed" religious groups as the English Puritans. It is not surprising therefore, to learn that around 80,000 Puritans left England for other countries between the ten year period between 1630 and 1640 including around 20,000 Puritans who moved to New England in America. Their departure from England eventually slowed down considerably following King Charles's loss of power in the early 1640s and in fact it is written that as many as 7% to 10% of the Puritans actually returned to England following the defeat and departure of King Charles 1. We mention all of this because it helps us understand and believe that our first Hoag ancestor moved to New England around the year 1636 and not in the year 1640 as reported by some family historians.

1st Church in Boston, 1732
My 9th great grandfather, Richard Hoag (? - 1728?), who was likely a Puritan, is believed to have landed in Boston sometime in the year 1636. We do not know for certain the exact year of his birth but he was probably no older than 25 years old when he arrived in America. Some stories however, report his birth year as early 1602, although considering he was probably single at the time of his arrival, this early birth date would seem unlikely. In any case, he soon married a girl named Joan, who was my 9th great grandmother and together they had three children who survived their births including my 8th great grandfather, John Hoag (1643-1728).  Records show that a Richard Hoag was made a Freeman in 1640 and owned land in Boston by 1646. Also he and his wife are listed as being members of the 1st Church in Boston which was founded back in 1632 and his children are listed in the old church records as having been baptized in this church. Another one of this church's early members was a famous man named John Winthrop, who was an early governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, an English Puritan leader, very wealthy, and quite possibly a friend of our great grandfather. Unfortunately from an historical perspective, following the year 1652 all records about our Richard Hoag in the Boston area have disappeared. Most family historians however, conclude that his disappearance was simply because Richard Hoag and his family, except for his son John Hoag, returned to England. Considering the demise of King Charles I in England and his prior persecutions of the Puritans, the return of our Hoag ancestors to England is entirely possible. We do however, have one serious issue about Richard Hoag's return to England that makes us kind of dislike my 9th great grandfather. His son John Hoag, my 8th great grandfather, who would have been under ten years old when his parents returned to England, was apparently working as an apprentice to a leather dresser and glove maker, and when his parents asked that their son be released from his role as an apprentice, his master apparently refused his release. The fact that Grandpa Richard Hoag then accepted this refusal and soon departed for England leaving John Hoag alone in America, is totally disgusting. Apparently the family never returned to America and it is entirely possible that the family died as a result of the various plaques that swept through England during this time period following their return. This is just a guess (or perhaps wishful thinking.)

Early apprenticeship
It is not known exactly how long young John Hoag served as an apprentice especially considering the rather young age that he started his training, but undoubtedly his service was completed on or before his twenty-first birthday. Typically apprenticeship durations during this time and place in history lasted only around seven years, so if John Hoag was an apprentice at the time of his parents' departure in 1652 and he was only nine years old at the time, this would suggest that he completed his program at the age of around 16 years old. This young age would seem highly doubtful which strongly suggests that our John Hoag may have been born earlier than the year 1643. If this is possibly the case, then what we wrote in the prior paragraph about John's parents and especially the dates of their marriage and John's birth, may be incorrect. Anyway, following his apprenticeship program, John Hoag began a business where he might be listed as a "leather-dresser, glove maker, or weaver," services that were most likely in high demand during this period of our country's history.

We do not know exactly when John Hoag moved about 30 miles north of Boston to a village now known as Newbury, but it was probably shortly following the conclusion of his apprenticeship and it was probably where he first either started up his new business or more likely went to work for an existing company. With his parents long gone by that point, it is very unlikely that he had any financial networth which would have made it very difficult to start a new business much less even purchase property.  The town of Newbury was originally settled in 1635 so by the time of John's arrival about 30 years later, it was probably a fairly well developed village with a population of at least 300 or more residents who were described on one website as being "staunch middle class" citizens.

One of the earliest settlers of Newbury was a man by the name of John Emery (1598-1683), my 9th great grandfather, who with his brother Anthony Emery, and their families arrived in Boston on the ship James on 3 June 1635 and soon after settled in the new town of Newbury. With John Emery was his wife Alice Grantham (1599-1647) and their four children. Alice was not my great grandmother. John Emery was quite active in his community during most of his life in America including serving on a number of juries, being a constable, a town officer, and generally accepted as a "solid citizen."  He was also noted as being fairly wealthy although his jobs as a carpenter and as an innkeeper might suggest that he was not really that wealthy but better described as being reasonably well off. John's wife Alice died in early 1647 and less than a year later John married a woman named Mary Shatswell (1606-1694), my 9th great grandmother, who like her new husband had just recently lost her spouse, a man named John Webster. Not surprisingly perhaps, Mary brought her six (or so) children with her when she married John and most likely she also brought with her some property and a certain amount of wealth. Together, Mary and John had two children including my 8th great grandmother, Ebenezer Emery (1648-1694), who was later to become the wife of our John Hoag. Ebenezer Emery and John Hoag were married in Newbury on 21 April 1669 and undoubted her parents, and her step-brothers and sisters, all attended the wedding.

One controversy that we believe should be pointed out is that many family trees and other Emery family history stories state that Ebenezer Emery is actually the daughter of John Emery's first wife, Alice Grantham and not his second wife Mary Shatswell. We can well understand the confusion considering the lack of historical records and dates of deaths and marriages, however, in Mary Shatswell Emery's last will and testament written in 1694, she writes "to my daughter Ebneser the rest of my wearing clothes" which we doubt would have been stated in her death will had not Ebenezer actually been her birth daughter. Furthermore, the other children listed in her will were not the children of John Emery and Alice Grantham but her children from her prior marriage.

Quite honestly, we could not uncover a lot about the history of our great grandfather John Hoag. We know that he became fairly successful and prominent in his community and for awhile he served as a County Magistrate and Judge. Historical records informed us that his role as a judge occurred during the period of the Salem Witch Trials and while we could not find the exact date and details of the trial in which he participated, we know that it occurred sometime between February 1692 and September 1693. We have gained a lot of respect for our great grandfather when we learned that his outspoken opposition to the Witch Trials resulted in him losing his job as a judge. One family historian wrote the following" "John Hoag was a man of fine natural abilities and filled the place of Side Judge in the County Court until the accusations and arrests of folk for witchcraft which he opposed with such steadfastness and resolution that he lost his seat." In the end at least 19 were found guilty of witchcraft and hanged including 14 women and 5 men, plus at least 200 others were accused of being witches and imprisoned until ultimately released when the whole concept of witchcraft lost public support. We must praise our great grandfather John Hoag for his opposition to these absurd actions on the part of some of our early American settlers.

We do not know for certain the number of children born to John and Ebenezer Hoag although most family historians list somewhere between ten and twelve. Part of the problem with counting the number of children born during this time period, is that far to many children died shortly following their birth and some before they were given names and were baptized and thus no records were recorded. Their second child, a boy named Jonathan Hoag (1671-1747) is my 7th great grandfather. One of the interesting things to read about the Hoag family at this point is that many of their children became Quakers including their son Jonathan, and thus departed from their Presbyterian or Puritan upbringing. The Quakers differed from the Puritans primarily in the fact that the Quakers opposed the central church authority and they did not believe that it was necessary to attend formal church services. They were also opposed to slavery and they believed in sexual equality. Initially the Puritans attacked the Quakers beginning around the year 1650, and even several Quakers were hanged, but by the time that the Hoag children began to convert around the 1720s, Quakers had their own meeting houses and were allowed to openly worship as they chose without being persecuted by the Puritans.  We found it somewhat interesting however, that the Hoag parents did not formally convert along with their children, at least not until John Hoag made the decision to become a Quaker not long before his death which occurred at the age of 85 in the year 1728. There are no records that we could find showing that my great grandmother Ebenezer ever agreed to convert although her father got in trouble once for entertaining Quakers in his house as early as 1663 so obviously her family was not opposed to Quakerism. Unfortunately, we have no idea when Ebenezer died as her death dates are all over the place beginning as early as 1694 and as late as 1729.

Jonathan Hoag, my 7th great grandfather, married my 7th great grandmother, Martha Goodwin (1685-1747), on 15 September 1703 most likely in her hometown of Amesbury, Massachusetts located around 10 miles north of Jonathan's hometown of Newbury. Despite the distance between the cities, the Hoag and Goodwin families had probably gotten to have known each other quite well as Martha Goodwin's twin sister, Sarah Goodwin, four years later in 1707 married Jonathan's younger brother, Joseph Hoag (1676-1760). These were good marriages for both of the Hoag brothers, as our Goodwin ancestors were quite well known and financially successful. Martha's and Sarah's grandfather, a man named Edward Goodwin (?-1672), my 9th great grandfather, is believed to have landed in the Boston area from England in or just before the year 1640 and we suspect that he was quite young at the time of his arrival.  His first marriage was to a young girl believed to be named Joanne Hart, my 9th great grandmother, which took place we believe in the year 1653 around 13 years following Edward's arrival. Their first and only son and my 8th great grandfather, Richard Goodwin (1654-1729) was born a year or so following his parents' marriage. Unfortunately, Joanne died soon after or at least before giving birth to additional children, and Edward later followed with a second marriage in 1668 to a widowed woman named Susanna Stowers. Together Richard and his second wife Susanna had at least two children.

Early boat ferry in Boston Harbor
Edward Goodwin is known to have operated and co-owned a boat ferry business soon after his arrival in Boston that operated sailing vessels from Boston across the bay to the village of Winnetsemet (now known as Chelsea). Apparently their business was not to successful for in the year 1644 they were short of money and had failed to make payments on their investment.  It would appear that our Edward Goodwin did not give up his desire to be a "shipwright" for when he later moved north up to Amesbury, he became a shipbuilder and operated a successful and an apparently prosperous business along the Merrimac River. The Merrimac River flowed down to the Atlantic Ocean and the distance from Edward's business and his home to the ocean along the river was less than five miles. It was interesting to read in a History of Amesbury that the first major industry in their area was ship-building and that over 600 wooden ships were built between the period beginning around the time of Edward Goodwin's arrival and the time of the American Revolution.
"Shipwright" - ship construction

Their son, Richard Goodwin was only 18 years old when his father died in 1672 and as the oldest child and son he ended up inheriting his father's property and his father's shipwright business. Five years later on the 14th of November in the year 1677 he married my 8th great grandmother, Mary Fowler (1650-1729). Quite interestingly, Mary's father, Samuel Fowler (abt 1618-1711), my 9th great grandfather, had come to America with his parents at the age of only 16 years old in the year 1618 onboard the ship "Mary and John" and like his future son-in-law, he too is listed as having been a "shipwright" and it is certainly possible that he and his future son-in-law, Richard Goodwin, had known each other prior to Richard's eventual marriage to his daughter.  Samuel is known to have purchased land in Amesbury in 1673 and was a known to be a resident of nearby Salisbury, Massachusetts.

Richard Goodwin and Mary Fowler Goodwin had at least five children together including their youngest daughter Martha Goodwin who was born on the 9th day of June in the year 1688 probably in their home in Amesbury in Essex, Massachusetts. As we previously mentioned, Martha married Jonathan Hoag on 15 September 1703 and over their lifetimes they had as many as twelve children including their second child and my 6th great grandfather, a boy named David Hoag (1712-1785). As far as we could determine they spent their entire lives living in Newbury, Massachusetts although some family trees incorrectly record their death locations as Hampton Falls, New Hampshire. This mistake was probably caused by the fact that one of their sons named Jonathan Hoag, obviously named after his father, married a girl named Elizabeth Dow and for awhile they lived in Hampton Falls.

Unfortunately we know very little about the life of my great grandfather Jonathan Hoag. His older brother, John Hoag, most likely inherited their father's business but we could uncover nothing that mentioned what Jonathan may have done as a business other than he was most likely a farmer. As previously mentioned in a prior paragraph, Jonathan joined his brothers in becoming a Quaker around the 1720s although prior to this major change, he is recorded as having served in the "2nd Company" militia for a period of only 11 days in the year 1708. His militia company was obviously engaged in the Queen Anne's War that took place between the years of 1702 and 1718, wherein the British and American troops battled the French and Indians. Fortunately for our great grandfather, there is no evidence that his militia company ever actually engaged in any battles. We did find one other interesting historical fact that recorded that in the year 1722, Jonathan Hoag was fined "for refusing to train" meaning that since he had by that point concerted to Quakerism, he was no longer interested in training for the military.  There is a little confusion as to the actual year of Jonathan Hoag's death although most historians have it listed as the year 1747. My grandmother, Martha Goodwin Hoag, is listed as having died in the same year as her husband.  Again, who knows if this is accurate, nor do we know, unfortunately, exactly where they are buried other than it was most likely in a cemetery near Newbury.

David Hoag, my 6th great grandfather, married my 6th great grandmother, Keziah Jenkins (1714-1758) on the 11th day of October in the year 1734 (although there is some controversy about this date as we will explain below.) Keziah grew up in the Village of Dover in Strafford County, New Hampshire located around 40 miles north of David's home in Newbury, Massachusetts, and we could not determine how they would have meet each other considering the distance between their homes. It is possible of course, that their marriage was arranged by their parents all of whom were Quakers. Keziah at the time of her marriage was only 19 years old which certainly would suggest an arranged marriage.  Anyway, our research of the ancestors of our Keziah Jenkins yielded us a lot of very interesting history about this side of our family.

Map showing location of Richmond Island, Maine
Keziah Jenkins' great grandfather and our 9th great grandfather was a man by the name of Reynold (or Reginald) Jenkins (1608-1683) who arrived in America on the ship "Agnes" in the year 1636. Their ship landed on a remote island later to be named Richmond Island located off the coast of the future state of Maine. This island was originally visited by the famous French sea captain, Samuel de Champlain, back in the year 1605. At the time of Reynold Jenkins' arrival the island had become a major fishing village and as far as we could determined, Reynold remained there as a fisherman until at least the year 1640 and maybe later, at which time he moved about 50 miles south to the coastal settlement of Kittery located today on the Maine/New Hampshire border. Kittery was also located on a major river and close to the ocean so it is highly likely that Reynold continued his occupation as a fisherman. It was here that he probably met and married my 9th great grandmother, a woman named Ann, and together they had at many as five or more children including my 8th great grandfather, Stephen Jenkins (1653-1694). Incidentally, some family historians claim that Reynold married his wife Ann in England before he departed to America, however we believe that this assumption is highly unlikely. Records show Reynold Jenkins as being a Quaker and like many others during this time period he got in trouble, was taken to court, and paid a fine for failing to attend the local church services. Records also show that in 1652 he took an Oath of Allegiance.  Reynold Jenkins died at the age of 75 years old in the year 1683 outliving his wife by about 5 years. Where they are buried is not known.

It is unlikely that their son Stephen Jenkins inherited any money or land from his parents as his father was not wealthy and typically the largest inheritance was given to the oldest son which was not our Stephen. Stephen married my 8th great grandmother, Elizabeth Pitman (1660-1687), in the year 1678. She was only 18 years old when she married. Her father, William Pitman (1632-1682) arrived in America in Boston in the year 1653 and shortly after his arrived he married Elizabeth's mother, Barbara Evans (1634-1660). Unfortunately my 9th great grandmother Barbara Evans died shortly following Elizabeth's birth in 1660. Elizabeth was her fourth child. Her father remarried two more times and had at least eight more children before he died in the year 1682 at the age of only 50 years old. In his final will he left his daughter Elizabeth only 15 shillings. Apparently his service as a blacksmith did not yield him a lot of wealth.

We do not know exactly when and for that matter why, Stephen Jenkins moved with his family from their home in Kittery, Maine to an area then known as Oyster River Plantation and now known as Durham, New Hampshire, a distance west of around 14 miles. The Oyster River Plantation had originally been settled back in 1635 although it is likely that Stephen Jenkins was attracted to the rather rural area because large acres of land could be purchased at a rather low price. Unfortunately things did not go well for our Jenkins family. For whatever reason, my grandmother Elizabeth Pitman Jenkins apparently and deliberately drowned herself in the Oyster River in the year 1687. She was obviously not satisfied with her life. To make matters even worse, during the King William's War, on July 18, 1694 our ancestors' village was attacked by around 250 Abenaki Indians and 45 of the residents were killed including our Stephen Jenkins and one of his daughters and 49 other residents were captured and taken to Canada. Another history story claims that 104 residents were killed and only 27 taken captive. Most of the homes and crops in the area were burned to the ground and all of their livestock were killed. Included in those captured was Stephen Jenkins second wife, Ann Tozier and Stephens' surviving children including my 7th great grandfather, Joseph Jenkins (1685-1777) who was at the time around 9 years old. Fortunately Ann Tozier was able to later escape from the Indians along with the captured children and some of the other residents.

There are no historical records that support the likelihood that young Joseph Jenkins was among those captured by the Indians following the death of his father other than a later statement by his stepmother claiming that her husband's children were also taken by the Indians. All that is really known is that in 1704 Joseph married my 7th great grandmother, Hannah Merrow (abt 1669-1743) apparently in the village of Dover in Strafford, New Hampshire where their family eventually lived for many years. Considering that Hannah grew up in Reading, Massachusetts around 70 miles south of Dover, how they actually met is a total mystery although several of Hannah's siblings eventually ended up in Stratford. What we find quite interesting assuming that their birth dates are accurate is that Joseph was only around 19 years old when he married Hannah who was then about 35 year old. If her birthdate is accurate, she gave birth to her youngest son when she was 45 years old, which frankly seems highly unlikely back in 1715, but then, who knows. Anyway, Joseph and Hannah had six children including their daughter and my 6th great grandmother, Keziah Jenkins (1714-1758) who was born on 1 November 1714. My grandmother Hannah Merrow died in 1743 at the age of around 74 year old. Her husband, my grandfather Joseph Jenkins, remarried shortly following Hannah's death, a woman named Tabitha Weymouth. He lived for many more years working for a long period as a preacher "among the Friends" until finally dying in the year 1777 at the age of 92 years old, quite remarkable at that time of our history.

We mentioned in a prior paragraph that my 6th great grandmother Keziah Jenkins married my 6th great grandfather David Hoag in the year 1734 and that she was 19 years old at the time of their marriage. We did find it confusing however, that in the last will and testament of her older brother Joseph Jenkins that was dated 26 Jan 1730, she is listed as already being the wife of David Hoag which definitely tells us that she was already married by the year 1730. If that is accurate and her birth year was actually 1714, then she was married by the age of 16. Unfortunately this just shows how hard it is sometimes to research the facts about our ancestors. Anyway, one of the very interesting things that we learned about our David Hoag and his family is that sometime around the year 1640 he joined with a large number of other Quakers in his area who had left their home and moved around 200 miles southwest into a new community later known as Quaker Hill located in Dutchess County, New York. Around the time of their arrival the community was populated by around 40 to 50 other Quakers families, the majority of whom had recently moved from the New England area. Joining David in his move south besides his wife and their two recently born children were at least two of his brothers and one of his cousins and their families. From this point forward we were unable to uncover much about the life of our David Hoag. We know that he had a total of around nine children with most of them born in Quaker Hill (sometimes called Oblong) including my 5th great grandfather and their fourth child, Samuel Hoag (1744-1841).

Oblong Friends Meeting House
David Hoag was undoubtedly a farmer for most of his life but he probably was also an active participant in the Quaker faith. He most likely attended religious services held at their local Oblong Friends Meeting House that had been constructed not long after his family's arrival.  One interesting thing we learned about the Quakers in this area was that they refused to participate in the French and Indian War that took place between 1754 and 1763 and by the 1760s their community had refused to do any more business with slaveholders. They also totally ignored, as much as possible anyway, the American Revolutionary War. My great grandmother Keziah Jenkins Hoag died in the year 1758. Our grandfather David Hoag died many years later in the year 1785. We strongly believe that they are both buried in the Quaker Hill Cemetery although their gravestones have long been lost. It is also possible of course, that they were buried in their own backyard, which at the time was not an uncommon practice.

Their son, Samuel Hoag, married my 5th great grandmother Anna Haviland (1769-1793)  on the 24th of May in the year 1768. Not surprisingly, Anna's family were also Quakers going back for many generations and we have to believe had this not been the case, their marriage would not have taken place. Her great, great grandfather and my 9th great grandfather, a man named William Haviland (?-1697) came over to America from England sometime around 1639 or 1640 and soon settled in the town of Newport, Rhode Island. It was here that he met and married my 9th great grandmother, Hannah Hicks (1638-1688) in the year 1653. What is quite interesting about Hannah's parents and my 10th great grandparents John Hicks (abt 1612-1672) and Herodias (last name unknown) (1623- before 1705) is that around four years following Hannah's birth they got divorced and some historians report that their divorce was "the first divorce in the New Colonies."  We are not sure that if this is true that we should be proud of our great grandparents for their historic first American divorce. Anyway, other than this brief and very goofy description of Anna Haviland's ancestry, we have decided to forgo a detailed description of her ancestry and save it for another chapter.

Samuel and Anna Haviland Hoag had around ten children born between the years 1769 and 1789 including their third child and my 4th great grandmother, Jane Hoag (1772-1849) who was born on 25 September 1772.  Here again, we were unable to learn much in the way of details about the life of Samuel Hoag. He was, like his ancestors and the ancestors of his wife, a Quaker, which meant that despite his relativity young age at the time, he refused to become a soldier during the American Revolution. During our research while trying to learn more about Samuel we came across Samuel's name in a book titled Quaker Hill written by a man named Warren H Wilson and published in 1907. In the book it is written that a "Samuel Hoag is appointed to take care of the (Oblong) Meeting House and to keep the door locked and windows fastened, and to nail up the hole that goes up into the Garratt."  Apparently what the local Quakers were trying to do at the time was to keep the local Tories from hiding in their meeting house and the Quakers wanted nothing to do with the them or the Revolutionary War that was currently taking place. The Tories during the American Revolutionary War were American colonists who supported the British side. Unfortunately for the local Quakers and despite their efforts to stay as far away from the war as possible, their meeting house was later seized by the American soldiers and turned into a hospital for wounded American soldiers.

Samuel Hoag was undoubtedly a farmer during most of his life as were most of his friends and neighbors although some may have been blacksmiths, shoemakers, candlemakers, cabinetmakers and the like. One very surprising thing about both my great grandfather as well as my great grandmother is that they both lived to remarkably old ages. Anna Haviland Hoag lived to the age of 79 years old passing away on 26 April 1818. Her husband Samuel died at the age of 97 years old outliving at least four of his children. The records show that they are both buried in the Quaker Cemetery in Dutchess County, New York undoubtedly located not far from their home.

My 4th great grandmother, Jane Hoag, was around 69 years old when her father died. She had married my 4th great grandfather, Gilbert Titus (1762-1847) when she was 20 years old and by the time of her father's death she had given birth to around 10 children. Jane and Gilbert moved away late in their lives from their home in Dutchess County to a new home in Cayuga County, New York located just east of Cayuga Lake now part of the Finger Lakes in Central New York State. Both Gilbert and Jane Hoag Titus were Quakers so their move away from the Dutchess County area is a little confusing other than it is generally recorded that by the time of the moving, Dutchess County had become somewhat over populated and the Quaker faith was on the decline. A brief description of our Titus ancestry is told in Chapter 19 in this blog titled Ancestors of Marian Coapman. Our relationship to our Hoag ancestors is as follows:

5th Great Grandparents:   Samuel Hoag  m  Anna Haviland
                                       (1744-1841)         (1748-1828)
4th Great Grandparents:   Jane Hoag      m  Gilbert Titus
                                       (1772-1849)         (1762-1847)
3rd Great Grandparents    Lydia Titus      m  Jacob Coapman
                                       (1810-1874)        (1803-1847)
2nd Great Grandparents:  David Coapman  m  Elsie Ann Yawger
                                       (1844-1910)             (1844-1918)
Great Grandparents:        Marian Coapman  m  Eugene H. Ferree
                                       (1867-1895)               (1866-1952)
Grandparents:                Florence Ferree  m  Douglas Patterson
                                       (1891-1938)                 (1888-1979)
Parents:                         Marian C. Patterson  m  Charles A. Baker
                                     (1916-1973)                     (1916-2000)
                                     Charles A. Baker Jr.
                                     Anne R. Baker
                                     Joan P. Baker

And so ends another story . . . .




Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Chapter 65 - Our Diller and Baker Ancestry

My mother's 3rd great grandfather on her mother's side of her family was a man named  David Ferree (1772-1832) who in the year 1794 married a woman by the name of Mary Baker (1775-1858), my 4th great grandmother.  Knowing, obviously, that my mother married a man with the surname of Baker, it made me immediately wonder if perhaps my parents were actually distant cousins. After a brief research however, I soon discovered that my mother's Baker ancestors were of German descent and that they came to America landing in Philadelphia sometime in the early 1700s.  Their surname at the time was spelled or pronounced as "Becker" which quickly was changed to the more English surname of "Baker".  My father's Baker ancestors on the other hand, immigrated from England into the Boston area in the early 1630s so obviously the Beckers and the Bakers were not related.

My Ferree family ancestry is told in Chapter 6 of this blog and it is here in this story that we noted that our early Ferree ancestors settled in what is now known as Lancaster County, Pennsylvania back in the year 1712. They were among the earliest European settlers in this area which at the time was inhabited almost entirely by Native American Indians. The David Ferree who married Mary Baker was in fact the great, great grandson of Marie Warenbuer Ferree (1653-1716), my 8th great grandmother, who first brought her family to what would eventually be named Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. This current chapter will cover what is known about the ancestors of my 4th great grandmother, Mary Baker.  Her parents were Frederick Baker (abt. 1749-1814) and Margaretta Diller (1755-?). We shall begin our family history story with our Diller ancestors.

Alsace, France/Germany in lower left corner
Margaretta Diller's grandfather was a man by the name of Casper Elias Diller (1696-1789) and he is my 7th great grandfather. Quite surprisingly a great deal is written about the life of this man especially in a detailed book titled The Diller Family published back in November of 1877. Unfortunately, there are many contradictions in the various biographies about his life and thus the actual facts cannot be determined for certain. Casper Elias Diller is believed to have been born in Alsace, France located on the border of what is now Germany. In the 1600s, the residents of Alsace were mostly German speaking people and in fact the region had passed between French and German control several times following the Edict of Fontainebleau that was issued by the French King in 1685. The Edict of Fontainebleau in effect had outlawed the Protestant or Huguenot faith in France. The Diller family, as were most of the residents of Alsace at the time, were Protestants as opposed to French Roman Catholics and therefore following the issuance of the Edict of Fontainebleau it is written that the population of the Alsace area decreased dramatically as the residents were forced if they wished to survive as Protestants, to leave France and escape to Holland, Germany, or England. It would seem logical that based on Casper's 1696 birthdate that his parents must have already departed from the French controlled area of Alsace prior to his birth and in fact we believe that Casper was likely born in Germany located just east of France and not in Alsace. The Diller Family book that we previously mentioned, reports that the Diller family with Casper and their other children initially escaped France and moved to Holland and then later moved to England. It is then written that in England following Casper's parents deaths, that he married an English woman and subsequently he moved with his new wife back to Germany. We do not believe that any of this is factually accurate. What does seem to be known for certain is that Casper married a German girl by the name of Anna Barbara Dornis (1703-1766), my 7th great grandmother, on the 23rd day of October in the year 1719. Their marriage is well documented as having taken place in the Village of Gauangelloch in Germany located about 100 miles northeast of Alsace in France. She was therefore not an English woman as claimed in The Diller Family biography.

Anna Barbara and Casper Elias Diller soon moved following their marriage to the nearby town of Heidelberg, Germany where Casper operated a farm and allegedly was a cobbler who made wooded shoes while his wife raised their children including their oldest son, Philip Adam Diller (1723-1777), my 6th great grandfather. Why Casper elected to move to America in the year 1733 is unknown. He was by that point 37 years old, fairly successful as a farmer and merchant, married for almost 14 years, and had four surviving children. Obviously by the year 1733, America was no longer a mystery and the fact that many Germans had already immigrated to America and settled in Pennsylvania was well known. Also word had already gotten back to Germany that religious freedoms in America were promised and good farm land was readily available.  Casper took his wife and by then four children ages 2 to 10 years old, on a long trip from their home up to Rotterdam in the Netherland, a distance of around 330 miles, where they then boarded a ship named the "Samuel" and headed for America. On board the ship were around two hundred and ninety-one persons including men, women, and children, almost all of whom were Germans. The ship departed from Rotterdam on 4 April 1733 and finally landed in Philadelphia on 17 August 1733 after a little over four awful months at sea.

Counties in Eastern Pennsylvania
including both Lebanon and Lancaster Counties
There is a little confusion as to where Casper Elias Diller and his family first lived after their arrival in Philadelphia but it is clear that they ended up owning land and building a home located just west of what is now the Village of Lebanon, in what is now Lebanon County, Pennsylvania located around 80 miles northwest of Philadelphia. There are records that show that in 1743 Casper actually had a claim on 268 acres of land in what would later become the city of New Holland in Lancaster County, however it is stated that he never actually purchased the land in New Holland. Family trees that show that many of his children were born in New Holland appear to be incorrect. Lebanon on the other hand, was first settled almost entirely by Germans beginning around 1720 so it is not at all surprising that this is where our Diller family eventually settled.

Casper Elias Diller's gravestone
Records show that Casper was among the early members of the Hill Lutheran Church that is located just west of Lebanon. The church was first established in 1733 which pretty much confirms that our Diller family members were early settlers in this area and the fact that Casper Elias Diller is buried in the Hill Church Cemetery located in what is now the Town of Cleona totally confirms where they lived for most of their lives in America. There are some historical records that state that Casper and his family first lived in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania rather than in Lebanon County. While this is a little misleading, it is technically correct since at the time of their arrival in 1733, Lebanon County did not exist and the land where the family lived at the time was a part of Lancaster County. It was however, separated from part of Lancaster County and made into a new and separate county in the year 1813. Anyway, Casper Elias Diller according to most historical writings became a fairly large and financially successful farmer. There are no records however, that show that he was in any way involved in the political, social, or religious leadership in his area.  Casper and my great grandmother Anna Barbara had around four to maybe six more children born in America following their arrival. Unfortunately Anna Barbara died fairly young although we do not know the exact year of her death. We believe that her death possibly following the death of a daughter born in 1746 as her name does not appear as being present at her daughter's baptism. If true, she would have been around 43 years old when she died, a far to common occurrence back in the early days when women had many, many children and doctors and hospitals did not exist and an early death following a child birth was not that uncommon. Casper is recorded as having a second marriage to a woman named Eva Magdelena Meyer in the year 1766. Casper died in the year 1787 at the age of 91, almost 22 years after his second marriage and later than the death of many of his children including his son Philip Adam Diller, my 6th great grandfather, who died in the year 1777, ten years before his father.

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Philip Adam Diller was around ten years old when he arrived in America and the voyage, and the ruralness, and the lack of a home for the first several years following their arrival must have been quite confusing for such a young boy. In the year 1745 when Philip was around 22 years old he married my 6th great grandmother, Maria Magdalena Ellmaker (1727-1807). Maria's parents and my 7th great grandparents, John Leonard Ellmaker (1697-1782) and Anna Margaretta Hornberger (1703-1779) were married in Germany on the 6th day of May in 1726 and then six days following their marriage they boarded a ship headed for America and Philadelphia. Soon after their arrival, they, like so many other Germans, moved to Lancaster County eventually settling in what would later be called Earl Township located about 2 miles north of New Holland and about 30 miles southeast of Cleona, home of Maria's future husband, Philip Adam Diller. Maria Magdalena Ellmaker was born on 9 August 1727 about a year following her parents arrival in America. Here again, we find it interesting to read where some of the history stories about our Ellmaker family report that their daughter Maria married a "close neighbor" by the name of Philip Adam Diller, again suggesting that our Diller family at the time might have been living in the nearby town of New Holland or perhaps even in Earltown. We do not believe that this is accurate and considering the rather scarce population at the time and the many large landholders including both the Diller and the Ellmaker families, finding a wife that lives 30 miles away would not be that unusual even in the year 1745.

Gravestone of Phillip Adam Diller
It does appear on the other hand, that following their marriage, Philip and Maria remained in the New Holland area for the remainder of their lives. They had at least eight children during their marriage including my 5th great grandmother and their fifth child, Margaretta Diller (1755-?) who was born in the year 1755. The area where Philip and Maria lived was originally founded back around 1728 when the first settlers arrived and at the time the land was largely covered by a forest of ash, oak, walnut, and chestnut trees. We have to believe that when Philip first acquired his land that a lot of work would have been necessary to create the large farm that he eventually owned that allowed him to become a fairly prosperous individual. Undoubtedly his sons and maybe even his daughters helped on the farm. Unfortunately we do not know a lot about his life other than that he was a farmer, a member of the Trinity Lutheran Church in New Holland, and shortly before his death in 1777 he served in the Lancaster County militia along with two of his sons during the American Revolution. It would seem unlikely however, that at his age he actually was engaged in any battles against the British especially considering their rather remote location in Pennsylvania. Philip Adam Diller died in September 1777 at the fairly young age of only 54 years old and he is buried in the cemetery by the Trinity Lutheran Church in New Holland. My 6th great grandmother, Maria Magdalena Ellmaker, outlived her husband by around 30 years. Unfortunately we know nothing about her life following Philip's death although she most likely lived with one of her children up to the time of her death.

Their daughter Margaretta Diller was around 18 years old when she married Frederick Baker. Unfortunately the history of our Baker, or perhaps more accurately our Becker ancestry, is not well known. Frederick's father was a man also named Frederick Becker (abt. 1721-abt 1755) who was from Germany and who is reported to have arrived in Philadelphia on board the ship "Loyal Judith" in November of 1740. The ship records reported that he was 19 years old at the time and traveled with a number of other men named Becker including a man named Peter Becker, age 22, who was most likely his brother or as some family historians report, his step-brother. Unfortunately the women and children onboard the "Loyal Judith" are not named although based on the number of children listed in his will that was written only 15 years later, it would seem likely that he was traveling with his wife and perhaps two or three children. All that we know about Frederick Becker's wife is that her name was Christina and she was likely my 6th great grandmother. We know that Frederick and Christina Becker left Philadelphia and eventually settled in what is today named Exeter Township in Berks County, Pennsylvania located about 24 miles north of New Holland in Lancaster County.

One of the things that we probably should have mentioned earlier is that much of the land originally settled by the Germans in Pennsylvania including the land of our Diller and Baker/Becker ancestors, was originally owned by William Penn. William Penn was granted land in the area in the year 1681 by the English King Charles II in exchange for money that had been loaned to the king by William Penn's father. At the time no one in all of America owned as much land as did William Penn and it is no wonder that they named the State of Pennsylvania after him. It is believed that he originally owned as much as 40,000 acres. Anyway, William Penn soon began encouraging settlement on his land and it is believed that he even encouraged as many as 30,000 or more Germans to immigrate to America beginning around the year 1683 and continuing until around the mid-1700s.  All of the new immigrants as they arrived in Philadelphia were required to take an oath of allegiance to the British crown and to agree to obey the laws of the province.

We unfortunately know almost nothing about the life of my 6th great grandfather, Frederick Becker other than based on his will he was a fairly successful farmer, and that he and his wife Christina had seven children at the time that his will was written in the early 1750s including my 5th great grandfather and their only son, Frederick Baker (Jr) (Abt. 1749-1814) who was granted his father's land and most of his possessions obviously to be granted to him when he reached his adulthood. Frederick's mother also unfortunately died only a few years later than his father and records show that Frederick Jr. was then placed under the guardianship of a man named Peter Baker, who we learned earlier was likely his father's older brother. One really fascinating thing that we learned about our great uncle Peter Baker is that he married a girl named Leah Ferree who was the granddaughter of my 8th great grandparents, Daniel Ferree and Marie Warenbuer Ferree (see Chapter 6) both of whom came to America in 1708. While Leah Ferree is obviously not one of my great grandmothers, her marriage to Frederick Baker's brother Peter shows what a small world it was back during this time period.

When young Frederick Baker who had just lost his father and mother, was sent to live with his Uncle Peter Baker, he was one of the youngest within his new family and his closest new "brother" or really his closest cousin with respect to age, was a boy named Peter Baker who was around seven or eight years older than Frederick.  Whether or not they were close friends we can not determine, but quite interesting was the fact that they married sisters: Peter's wife was Christina Diller and Frederick Baker married her younger sister, Margaretta Diller, my fifth great grandmother, around the year 1773. It would appear that Frederick Baker must have inherited money from his father for soon after his marriage to my grandmother, he purchased around 225 acres (one source says 300 acres) of land in Pequea in Salisbury Township, Lancaster County located about seven miles south of New Holland and around two miles north of the Village of Gap. His land was apparently along the banks of the Pequea Creek for it is reported that in order to water the land on his large farm he damned the Pequea Creek at a considerable expense. In the book "The Diller Family" it is written that our Frederick Baker "had some capital, was intelligent and energetic, and quite a scientific farmer." The book further reports that he was an early and active member of the Saint John's Church in the nearby village of Compass and that he died in Philadelphia in 1814 after undergoing a painful and dangerous surgery. It is also noted that he is buried in the Christ Church Graveyard in Philadelphia following his failed surgery. We could not verify his burial location but it was interesting to learn that also buried in the Christ Church Graveyard is Benjamin Franklin who died in the year 1790. Incidentally, there was a least one other family historian who wrote that Frederick Baker was buried in the Christ Church Cemetery in Compass in Lancaster County and not in Philadelphia, so who knows where he was actually buried. One other historical story about the life of Frederick Baker notes that he was a soldier during the American Revolution. While this claim would seem highly likely considering his fairly young age at the time of the war, there are no records that we could uncover that list his name or for that matter show that any militia troops in the rather remote Lancaster County were engaged in any major battles outside of their area. What we did find interesting however, while searching for any military records, was that when the British troops occupied Philadelphia in the early part of the Revolutionary War, the village of Lancaster was declared the "capital" of the country for a short period apparently because it was the largest inland town in America at the time. The population of Lancaster was around 4,200 residents and was located less than twenty miles from the home of our great Baker grandparents.

Diller Baker Ferree gravestone
Frederick and Margaret Diller Baker had at least six children during their marriage including their second child and my 4th great grandmother, Mary Baker (1775-1858) who was born around the beginning of the Revolutionary War on 12 May 1775. Considering that at least four of Frederick's and Margaret's children were born during the war would lead us to conclude that our Frederick Baker did not spend a lot of time away from his home and family defending his county against the British army. As previously mentioned, Frederick died at the fairly young age of 63 years old. When my grandmother Margaretta Diller Baker died we do not know, but hopefully they both attended the marriage of their daughter Mary and her new husband, David Ferree (1772-1832) which took place on 21 August 1784. We are going to end our story of our Baker and Diller ancestors at this point although it is worth stating that the first child of Mary Baker and David Ferree who was also my 3rd great grandfather was a boy named Diller Baker Ferree (1796-1865) who was obviously named in honor of both of his great grandparents. A really nice way to honor his grandparents.

From our Diller/Baker ancestors to the present time our ancestral tree is as follows:

4th Great Grandparents:  David Ferree  m  Mary Baker
                                      (1772-1832)         (1775-1858)
3rd Great Grandparents:  Diller Baker Ferree  m  Elizabeth Dewees
                                      (1796-1865)                   (1799-1844)
2nd Great Grandparents: David D. Ferree  m  Mary R. Hutchinson
                                      (1826-1869)               (1825-1901)
Great Grandparents:       Eugene H. Ferree  m  Marian E. Coapman
                                     (1866-1952)                 (1867-1895)
Grandparents:                Douglas Patterson  m  Florence Ferree
                                     (1888-1979)                 (1891-1938)
Parents:                        Charles A. Baker  m  Marian C. Patterson
                                     (1916-2000)                (1916-1973)
Living Generation:          Charles A. Baker Jr
                                    Anne Rappleye Baker
                                    Joan Patterson Baker

And so ends another story. . . .