|William the Conqueror|
|Current map of drive from London to Stansted Mountifitchet|
Likely burial location of Thomas and Mary Sanford
St Andrew and Holy Cross Church
Not surprisingly considering that my Sanford ancestors from England were neither wealthy nor important political individuals, we learned very little about the life of my 9th great grandfather, Ezekiel Sanford and most of what has been learned was obtained from old church records. We know that as the eldest son of his parents that he inherited a small amount of land in Stansted Mountifitchel when his father died, however, at the young age of around 20 or 21 he moved to the nearby village of Hatfield where he soon met and married 19 year old Rose Warner (1588-before 1707), my 9th great grandmother. Their marriage is estimated to have taken place in the year 1607. Ezekiel's lack of wealth was pretty well confirmed by the fact that following his marriage to my great grandmother, he and Rose lived with her parents at their home in Hatfield at least until the birth of their first two sons which took place sometime between their marriage date and maybe 1609. Unfortunately most of the church and other records that might have recorded information about the life of the Sanford family in Hatfield and then later around 1614 back in Stansted Mountifitchel have been lost so that nothing much is known about the life of Ezekiel including exactly where he and his family lived, nor anything about his trade or occupation. Many family historians report that Ezekiel and Rose had as many as eight children (some say even more) including at least three sons who emigrated to America including my 8th great grandfather, Robert Sanford (1615-1676). Ezekiel Sanford is believed to have outlived his wife by many years and then finally dying at the age of 96 years old in 1683.
|Early New England settlements|
|Map of Hartford showing original founders|
(Picture can be clicked to enlarge)
The first mention of Robert Sanford in Hartford and in America for that matter was the birth of his son and first child Zachariah Sanford in 1644. It is estimated that he married my 8th great grandmother, Hannah "Ann" Sarah Adams (1624-1682) in Hartford in 1643 when she was around 21 years old. Ann Adams according to many family historians was the daughter of Jeremy Adams (1604-1683) and Rebecca Taylor (1608-1678), my 9th great grandparents, and Jeremy's name also appears on the list of the original Hartford founders. It probably needs to be mentioned that there are also many family historians that adamantly dispute any claim that Robert Sanford's wife Ann was a daughter of Jeremy Adams and his wife. They may be right, therefore we will not spend any time describing this side of our ancestry. It is a well known historical fact that Hartford was originally settled by Puritans under the leadership of the Rev. Thomas Hooker. Hooker had encouraged his Puritan followers to leave the Boston area because he was very much disturbed with the "undemocratic ways" of the colony's government. What we found interesting in our research of the Sanford family as well as the Andrew Warner family for that matter, is that there was no mention of either of these families ever being Puritans. While it may be unlikely that Robert Sanford was an avid Puritan when he emigrated to America at the age of only 16 or 17, it would seem highly likely that he ultimately became a strong proponent not only having moved to Hartford but also because his new wife as the likely daughter of a Puritan and an early Hartford settler was undoubtedly herself a Puritan.
We unfortunately do not know a great deal about the life of our Robert Sanford although he was known to have been granted land in the Hartford area as well as land in nearby Windsor. He does not appear to have been in any major leadership positions in his town's government and when it comes to his occupation we learned only that he was a chimney inspector (or chimney viewer) in 1651/52, a leather sealer in most years between 1658 to 1672, and finally a fence viewer between 1662 and 1674. On the other hand he was an apparent leader in his family as between 1644 and about 1665 he and Ann had eight children which meant that Ann was pregnant about 30% of the time during her child bearing years. Their third child, Ezekiel Sanford (1648-1716) is my 7th great grandfather. Unfortunately Robert Sanford died fairly young at the age of 60 in the year 1676. His death is known to have hit him fairly quickly and unexpectedly as he only partially completed his last will and testament before he died. My great grandmother Ann only outlived Robert by a few years finally dying herself in 1682. It is assumed that they are both buried in an old "Ancient Burying Ground" in downtown Hartford known as the Center Church Graveyard. Unfortunately both of their gravestones have long ago been lost.
|Hanging a Witch|
|Original Sanford home still exists today|
|Old photo of Ezekiel Sanford bridge over Sagg Pond|
|Sagg Pond flowing to the Atlantic Ocean|
|Howell's Water Mill, Southampton, NY|
One of the fascinating things that our great grandfather Edward Howell accomplished during his time in Southampton was that he built a water mill for grinding grain, rye, and wheat into flour. This mill still exists today as an historical structure and it is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. Obviously our great grandfather was during his lifetime an extensive landowner, a fairly wealthy man, and generally credited with being the leader of the first English settlers in the future state of New York. The first settlers of New York before the English were of course the Dutch living in New Amsterdam. Edward's wife and my 9th great grandmother was Francis Paxton (1584-1630) and they had six children including my 8th great grandmother, Margaret Howell (1622-1707). Our Howell ancestry is described in far great detail in Chapter 45 of this family blog.
|Moore Home in Newtown before it was torn down|
|The Old Hasley House built by Thomas Hasley about 1648|
Joseph and Sarah Halsey Moore lived the rest of their lives following their marriage in Southampton. We do not know all of the names nor the exact number of children who were born to our great grandparents although only four children were named in Joseph's will that was "proved" on 30 May 1726 and originally written in 1723. Records show that their oldest daughter and my 6th great grandmother, Elizabeth Moore (1681-1738), was born or baptized on 29 October 1681. Elizabeth Moore as we mentioned earlier in this chapter was later to become the wife of my 6th great grandfather, Ezekiel Sanford (1681-1755). Also mentioned in Joseph's will is the fact that he lived next door to his then son-in-law Ezekiel Sanford and that he gave his slave Peter a half acre of land. Joseph Moore was also apparently fairly well off financially or at least enough to be able to own a slave and a considerable amount of land. Incidentally it is recorded that Long Island had the largest slave population of any rural or urban area in the north during the colonial period and that the future state of New York slave population had grown to almost 20,000 about the time of the Revolutionary War.
So we now again return to the story of our Sanford ancestors. Elizabeth Moore married Ezekiel Sanford in Bridgehampton early in the year 1705 and their first child was born in October of that same year. Ezekiel's father only a few years earlier had become quite well known in Bridgehampton having recently completed a new bridge over the Sagg Pond. We do not know for certain what Ezekiel did for a living although most of the families living in Bridgehampton during this time period were farmers including the leaders of the community. Ezekiel was undoubtedly a farmer. The original settlers of both Southampton in 1640 and later in Bridgehampton were Puritans who had moved from Connecticut. By the time of Ezekiel's birth however, most of the residents of the area were thought to be Presbyterians and we believe that the only church in Bridgehampton at the time was a Presbyterian church. Originally the eastern end of Long island was under the leadership of the Colony of Connecticut, however in 1665, then Governor John Winthrop Jr of New York announced that the towns on the eastern end of Long Island were now part of New York. All of these changes of course took place before Ezekiel's birth and the local citizens by the late 1600s were undoubtedly by that point accustomed to the changes. Some records of Ezekiel Sanford's public life report that he was at some point a local constable and that he had held a few town offices. He is also noted to have been a "lieutenant of the third Militia Company" although there is no record that he ever participated in any local battles The French and Indian War began in 1754 shortly after his death in 1748,
Elizabeth and Ezekiel Sanford were know to have had around seven children as mentioned in Ezekiel's will although some other records show that they had eight children between their marriage in 1705 and Elizabeth's rather early death at the age of 57 in the year 1735. Not surprisingly, Ezekiel remarried following his wife's death. He finally died in 1755 at the age of 74. The daughter of Elizabeth and Ezekiel Sanford, Abigail Sanford (1712-1748) is my 5th great grandmother.
Abigail Sanford was 20 years old when she married my 5th great grandfather, Silas Sayre (1708-1747) in Bridgehampton in 1732. The story of my Sayre family ancestry is well told (I hope) in Chapter 13, "The Sayre Family" in this blog. What we learned is that Silas Sayre's great grandfather, Thomas Sayre (1597-1670) is one of the original settlers of Southampton back in 1640. We also just learned that two of Thomas' sons, Daniel Sayre (1633-1708), who was Silas Sayre's grandfather, and his brother Job Sayre (1637-1694), are both my great grandfathers. When we wrote the chapter about our Sayre ancestors, Chapter 13, we were not aware at the time that Daniel Sayre was also a great grandfather. Another interesting but surprising connection that we discovered is that one of Job Sayre's sons, a man named Job Sayre (Jr) (1672-1755) married a girl named Susannah Howell (1680-?) who was the great granddaughter of Edward Howell (1584-1655) who we mentioned earlier in this Sanford Ancestry chapter and who was also an original founder of Southampton. Obviously these communities were all quite small back in the early 1600s so it should not be surprising that find that one's children and grandchildren married their neighbors' children and grandchildren.
Anyway, the marriage of Abigail Sanford to Silas Sayre marks the end of my Sanford ancestry. My relationship to my Sanford ancestors is shown below.
5th Great Grandparents: Abigail Sanford m Silas Sayre
4th Great Grandparents: Elizabeth Sayre m Nathaniel Seeley
3rd Great Grandparents: Elizabeth Seeley m Archibald Campbell
2nd Great Grandparents: Jane Campbell m Joshua Rappleye
Great Grandparents: Helena E. Rappleye m Asbury H. Baker
Grandparents: Charles S. Baker m Helen Spaulding
Parents: Charles A. Baker m Marian C. Patterson
Living Generation: Charles A. Baker Jr.
Anne Baker Fanton
Joan Patterson Baker
And so ends another story . . . . . .