Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Chapter 18 - The Hamilton Family

The first of my ancestors on my father’s side of the family to settle in the Elmira, New York area were Lebbeus Hammond and his wife, Lucy Tubbs. Lebbeus was noted as a Revolutionary War soldier and an Indian fighter and they settled near Elmira in the 1790s. Their story and the history of the Hammond family is told in Chapter 8. Lucy Tubbs’ parents were Lebbeus Tubbs (also a soldier in the Revolutionary War) and Bathsheba Hamilton. The Tubbs’ family history which includes a look at the early years of Plymouth Colony is told in Chapter 2. This chapter tells the story of the ancestors of Bathsheba Hamilton.

David Hamilton, my 9th great grandfather, was born around 1625 and it is unlikely that the exact year of his birth will ever be determined. Some genealogical sources place the birth date as early as 1620 and as late as 1640 although neither of these dates are realistic. The 1620 date would have made him older than his older brother, Gabriel, and substantially older than Annah, his wife and childhood sweetheart whom he did not marry until 1662. The 1640 date would have made him only eleven years old when he was a soldier in the 3nd English Civil War, which was very unlikely. David was born in the village of Westburn in what was then Lanarkshire County, Scotland, located a short distance from the town of Hamilton and about eleven miles southeast of Glasgow. The Hamilton lineage can be traced back to Normandy, France to before the Norman Invasion of England in 1066. David’s 15th great grandfather is thought to be Robert de Beaumont, who fought alongside William the Conqueror, later King William 1 of England, at the Battle of Hastings. His 10th great grandfather, Walter Fitz Gilbert de Hambleton (1250-bef.1336) was knighted by Robert the Bruce around 1329 and granted for his services and loyalty the title of 1st Baron of Cadzow and the barony of Cadzow (now Hamilton, Scotland) which included vast acreages of land as well as the Cadzow Castle (located about 1 mile southeast of the home of David Hamilton. The ruins of Cadzow Castle are shown in the above photograph. David’s 6th great grandfather, Thomas Hamilton, was the third son, of John Hamilton (1371-1402), the 4th Baron of Cadzow. The lands and the titles however, passed to John Hamilton’s oldest son, James Hamilton. James’ direct descendant, Angus Alan Douglas Douglas-Hamilton, who was born in 1938, is the current 15th Duke of Hamilton. The Duke of Hamilton is today one of the most ennobled individuals in the United Kingdom. While David’s branch of the family tree did not inherit the titles and barony, the family was nevertheless a “Hamilton” which translated in the early 17th century to a family able to enjoy the privileges afforded to members of Scotland’s land-owning upper-class. James Hamilton (1606-1648), the 1nd Duke of Hamilton, was David’s 7th cousin, once removed. The painting to the right shows James Hamilton.

The times into which David Hamilton was born were turbulent both socially and politically. Charles I was crowned King of England on February 2, 1626. Unfortunately, religious conflicts permeated Charles’ reign as did an epic political struggle for power between Charles, who believed in the “Devine Right of Kings”, and the English Parliament. It was during his reign from the period of 1630 until around 1642 when the Parliamentary forces under Oliver Cromwell usurped the power of the King, that almost 25,000 Puritans immigrated to America to escape the unpopular reforms that Charles was imposing on the church. Many in England believed that King Charles was attempting to return the Roman Catholic Church to power in England and Charles gave them fodder for their beliefs by marrying a Roman Catholic and by his aggressive methods (including imprisonment and even torture) to purge the Church of England of its liberal and Protestant, Calvinistic practices. The Puritans on the other hand, believed equally strongly that nothing in the bible suggests that bishops with their rich robes, church ornamentations, elaborate rituals, and even kneeling at communions should be incorporated in religious services. While David Hamilton’s family were Presbyterians they shared with Puritans the conviction that King Charles was trying to move the church in the wrong direction. Presbyterians followed the teachings of John Calvin who advocated a simpler faith that like the Puritans believed that bishops and the “popish” church rituals should not be part of their church. In this period of history one’s religious faith was of paramount importance, enough to go to war to defend if necessary.

King Charles’ struggle for power with the English Parliament centered primarily over the issues of taxation and Charles’ attempt to reform the Anglican Church of England against the wishes of Parliament and the majority of the citizens of England. To go into great detail on the reign of Charles I that lasted from 1625 until his death in 1649, is beyond the scope of this chapter. Briefly however, except for the eleven year period from 1629 until 1640 when Charles had dismissed Parliament, during most of his reign the country was at war, and war required a great deal of money. Unfortunately for Charles the only way to raise the money was through taxation and the right to approve taxes, by English tradition, rested in the hands of Parliament. For the most part Parliament did not approve of his wars and they denied him the money needed to support his armies. When Charles came to power in 1628, the country was at war with France and Spain. In 1639 and again in 1640, Charles sent his military forces into Scotland in a failed attempt to force Scotland and the Presbyterians to accept his mandate that the Anglican Church of England was the only acceptable faith to be practiced in England. Without the funds, Charles was forced to abandon his efforts in this regard. Then in 1641, Charles ordered his military forces to Ireland to put down what he believed was a Catholic attempt to take over Ireland. In the summer of 1642, Parliament disgusted with Charles’ actions without their consent, maneuvered to gain control over the army. What resulted was the creation of two separate armies and the beginning of the England’s First Civil War. Back and forth battles in southern England between the Parliament army and the King’s “Royalist” army lasted until 1646 at which time the Royalist army was defeated and Charles escaped north to Scotland where he surrendered to the Scottish army. This effectively ended of the First Civil War.

In late 1647, Charles completed an agreement with the Scots that promised him military aid in exchange for his agreeing to implement Presbyterianism in England once he was back in power. The 1st Duke of Hamilton, James Hamilton, led an invasion into England with Royalist and Scottish forces but he was defeated by Oliver Cromwell in August of 1648 at the Battle of Preston. James was subsequently tried for treason for his role in the war, found guilty and executed. As far as can be determined our David Hamilton was not with James Hamilton at the Battle of Preston. This event ended the Second Civil War. Shortly thereafter, Scotland turned King Charles over to Parliament. Parliament, or to be more accurate, the militant branch of Parliament, a group that included Oliver Cromwell, set up a “high court of justice”, tried the King for treason, and in January of 1649, the King was beheaded. Oliver Cromwell and Parliament were now firmly in control of England, but the civil wars were not yet over.

Many of the English people, and particularly the Scottish people were shocked that King Charles I was executed. He was after all the King even if his behavior had been unpopular. Scotland, totally disillusioned by the new “Commonwealth” declared by Cromwell, proclaimed Charles’ son, Charles Stuart, as the new King of Scotland (King Charles II), and together they plotted to regain the throne of England. Charles II agreed to impose Presbyterianism in England in exchange for a Scottish army. The Commonwealth army under the command of Oliver Cromwell mounted a pre-emptive invasion of Scotland and defeated a Scottish army at the Battle of Dunbar in September of 1650. This was the beginning of the Third Civil War.

In August of the following year, King Charles II with his Scottish allies began a desperate attempt to invade England and capture London hoping to catch Cromwell’s army off-guard whose forces were still in northern Scotland. Joining King Charles II was a force under the leadership of William Hamilton, the new 2nd Duke of Hamilton, following the death of his father, James Hamilton, who was executed in 1649. James was able to raise a regiment of the men from his vast Scottish estates in Lanarkshire. Included in this regiment composed largely of horse cavalry, was our ancestor, David Hamilton, who would have been in his mid-20s at the time of the invasion. Unfortunately, for the army of Charles II and our David Hamilton, Oliver Cromwell anticipated the invasion and took decisive actions to thwart its success.

David Hamilton undoubtedly knew many of the soldiers called into service by Lord Hamilton. Many of the men were his cousins and friends. Most of them worked on his family’s estate or on the estates of his neighbors. He knew that most of these new soldiers were untrained and totally inexperienced and they had little idea of what was expected of them. Many of the men carried no weapons other than a long wooden pole called a pike. These soldiers were called the Pikemen. Other men were fortunate to carry a weapon called a matchlock musket which when it worked, fired a musket ball that was deadly at close range. These soldiers were called Musketeers and they with the Pikemen, were the army’s foot soldiers. David Hamilton, as befitting his family’s status, rode into battle on his large family horse. Neither David nor his horse wore armor and David’s only weapons were a carbine which he slung over his shoulder with a leather strap, and his sword. Most of the army did not wear matching uniforms. In David’s case, he wore only his normal civilian riding clothes which included his tall leather riding boots. David was a soldier in the Dragoons who formed the army’s cavalry regiment. They were not professional soldiers and few of them had fought in combat or received combat training.

David Hamilton was aware that he might someday be called into military service to defend Scotland and his Presbyterian faith. He was fully cognizant of Lord William Hamilton’s intention to support King John’s military efforts to regain the throne. Furthermore, David’s older brother, Gabriel Hamilton, was on the “Committee of War” for the County of Lanark beginning in the year 1648 and Gabriel was an outspoken advocate for the Presbyterian cause. He kept David fully informed as well as highly motivated to their cause. Nevertheless, when the call to arms finally came to join the invasion army, David had little time to prepare. He departed only with his horse, his weapons, the clothes he wore, and a small quantity of food and water. Where they were headed and how long they would be away he could only surmise by listening to the rumors that abounded among the soldiers in the marching army.

Oliver Cromwell’s army finally caught up with King John’s II Scots-Royalist army on September 3, 1651 in Worcester, England. David Hamilton had walked and rode his horse for almost three weeks and 300 miles on England’s dusty roads. Their army commanders expected additional men would join their cause along the way and the English countryside would provide them with their needed supplies, mainly food, but neither occurred and when they marched into Worcester the men were tried, exhausted, and as it turned out, greatly outnumbered by the Commonwealth army. The Scot-Royalist army had a strength of approximately 16,000 men; Cromwell’s army numbered around 31,000. Furthermore, the Scot-Royalist army consisted largely of untrained soldiers commanded by inexperienced leaders including both King John II and the William, Duke of Hamilton. Oliver Cromwell was a proven commander of many battles and his men were experienced and well trained. The Battle of Worcester was a total disaster for the Scot-Royalist army. While William Hamilton’s troops including David, courageously led an attack on the Roundhead position at Perry Wood, outside the city gates of Worchester, they were forced to retreat into the city. The 2nd Duke of Hamilton was fatally wounded during the retreat. In the biography of Oliver Cromwell written by Antonia Fraser and published in 1973, the conclusion of the battle that ended the English Civil Wars is described as follows: “Refusing quarter, the garrison was overrun, and their own guns now turned towards the city. As a result the wretched Royalists found themselves pressed back into Worcester itself from two directions. The result was carnage. Dead bodies of Royalists began to fill the streets. Crushed in the narrow alleys of Worcester, corpses not only of men but of horses began to block all possible passages like heaps of unnatural refuse. Some Scots, perhaps as many as four thousand, did manage to escape through the inadequately attended north gate. But two thousand were killed to a mere two hundred of Cromwell’s men, and eight or nine thousand prisoners taken.”

King Charles II managed to escape. The Duke of Hamilton’s leg was shattered by a musket ball and he died in agony from his wound. David Hamilton was among the 8,000 captured soldiers who were among the fortunate not to have been seriously wounded. Oliver Cromwell had no intention of allowing any of his prisoners the opportunity to return home to Scotland and live to fight another day. Most of the captured officers of the Royalist army were tried for treason, and then executed. The rest of their prisoners were marched in chains to London until it was determined that their punishment was to be deportation to the colonies in America where they were to be sold as indentured servants. The exact numbers of men sent to Barbados and the other British colonies in the West Indies, and to Bermuda is not known although clearly the fate of many of the men sent to the West Indies probably amounted to a death sentence. What is known is that approximately three hundred men were deported to New England. Fortunately for David Hamilton, and for his future father-in-law, Richard Jackson (who is my 10th great grandfather), they were included on the list of prisoners to be deported to New England.

David Hamilton remained in prison in the London area under despicable conditions with little food or warm clothing and blankets. It was getting cold and damp. Finally on November 8th, 1651, about two months following their defeat at Worcester, the three hundred Scottish prisoners were marched to the port of Gravesend, on the Thames, a short distance from London. There they boarded the ship “John & Sarah” under Master John Greene (a lumber dealer). The ship was consigned to a Thomas Kemble of Charlestown, Near Boston, where the prisoners were to be sold as indentured servants. The trip across the north Atlantic in winter must have been pure hell for the men locked in the ship’s hold below. It is estimated that at least 10% percent of the men died during the voyage leaving around 270 men alive when they disembarked in Charlestown (near Boston) in April of 1652. While their conditions were terrible by any standard, their status as indentured servants was in no way equal to the status of a slave. A 10% death rate on a slave ship would have been considered remarkably fortunate and the African slaves were bound slaves for life with little hope for freedom. Indentured servants on the other hand were in a sense, freemen who had chosen to contract themselves out as unpaid servants until they had worked off the cost of their transportation from England and the cost of their food and housing expenses while “employed.” Once their debt was paid they were freed of any further obligations. The period of the indentureship varied but it usually did not extend more than seven years.

There is no definitive evidence as to exactly where or how long David Hamilton remained an indentured servant. Many of the early historians are content to state that David probably remained in the Boston area and once his debt was paid he moved to Dover (now Rollinsford), in southeastern New Hampshire where the records clearly record his land purchase in 1662. Later records however, reveal that a David Hamilton worked with other Scotchmen, also former prisoners, at the Great Works sawmill in Kittery North Parish, Maine. Kittery North Parish is now part of South Berwick, Maine and it is located on the Salmon Falls River across the river from Rollinsford, New Hampshire where David Hamilton eventually settled and lived with his family for the remainder of his life. It appears probable that David served his indentureship at the Great Works sawmill from 1652 until about 1660. Lumber in the mid-1600s was a huge and prosperous business in Berwick, Maine. The thick forests in the area were filled with gigantic trees some 150 to 200 feet tall. They were cut down and floated down the river to the sawmills that were powered by the rapidly flowing Salmon Falls and Great Works rivers. The trees were called the “king’s pines” because they were used as mast’s for the great English ships. Lumber was a major export to England during this early colonial period. It was not unusual therefore, to discover that the labor intensive sawmills were employers of many of the Scottish indentured servants who had been captured in battle during the Third English Civil War. Indentured servants were obviously an inexpensive source of labor in these remote forested areas of Maine and New Hampshire.

Hamilton family lore has it that David Hamilton married his childhood sweetheart whom he had left behind in Lanarkshire, Scotland when he was banished to America in 1651. Her name was Annah Jackson, and she was the daughter of Richard Jackson, also of Lanarkshire and a passenger with David on the John & Sarah. Whether or not the story is true cannot be confirmed. In the privately written history of the Hamilton family by Samuel King Hamilton published in 1913 he writes for us the following: “. . through the doubt and defeat of that period her love never languished, and when her father, Richard Jackson, who had been banished by the same degree and transported to America in the same vessel with David Hamilton, had worked out his servitude and cleared for himself a little home on the westerly bank of the beautiful and historic Saco, bade her mother, her brother, and herself to join him, she left her desolate home in Scotland with a heart bounding with hope and expectation. July 14th, 1662, after years of sorrow and separation, these childhood lovers, near where the great river mingles its chastened waters with the mighty deep, and without a sigh for their old trysting-place in the home country plighted their troth.” Why say it in a few words when many embellished words will do just as well?

David and Annah Hamilton were to have seven children born between the years 1664 and 1679. David, if he was born in 1625, would have been 37 years old when he married. When his last son was born, Jonas Hamilton, my 8th great grandfather, David would have been around 54 years old. If Annah was David’s childhood sweetheart, it is likely that she would have been no more than five years his junior or about 21 years old when he left for war. If this age is accurate that would have made Annah around 49 years old when Jonas Hamilton was born and 34 years when her first child was born in 1664. These are not typical child bearing ages especially in the 1600s. While there is no reason to doubt that Annah was not the daughter of Richard Jackson, I suspect that that she was probably much younger than David when he left home in his mid-20s. I suppose it is possible that the young 25-year old David Hamilton was in love with a 15-year old Annah Jackson when he set off for war which might explain why he did not marry his “sweetheart” before he departed Scotland. It is more likely however, that they were not sweethearts. Whatever the circumstances, in the wildernesses of southeastern New Hampshire in 1662, there was probably a huge shortage of single women and after years of hardships, David Hamilton must have been out-of-his mind with joy to marry Annah Jackson, even if she were not his childhood sweetheart.

Prior to David’s marriage to Annah Jackson he acquired about twenty acres of land located on the west bank of the Salmon Falls River (which was then called by its Indian name, the Newichawannoch River) south of the present day village of Rollinsford. The Salmon Falls River today marks the boundary between the states of New Hampshire and Maine. Here he erected a house to which he took his new bride. His land was located not far south of the point where the Great Works River enters the Salmon Falls River. The Great Falls sawmill where David was employed as an indentured servant was located less than a mile upstream on the Great Works River. It is entirely possible that David was part of the original crew of men who logged the area where his new home was later constructed. David and his wife and family lived in this house until his death. His occupation for the next 30 years was that of a farmer.

Pioneer life in this part of New England was not easy. Not only did they experience the usual hardships one might expect in the frontier wildernesses of southern New Hampshire in the later part of the 1600s, but their remote location put them in a position of constant Indian conflicts. The area was a focal point for Indian raids during King Philip’s War in 1675. Raids continued though the early part of the French & Indian Wars, from 1689 through 1697. This period is referred to in our country’s history as King William’s War and many of the homes in the community of South Berwick located just north the Hamilton homestead, were burned and many of the colonists were killed. In his journal written sometime after 1691, the Rev. John Pike added the following matter-of-fact comment: “1691, September 28th. David Hamilton, Henry Childs, etc. were slain by Indians at Newichawannoch.” David Hamilton’s life ended in the same tragic fashion that seemed to have permeated much of his life. There are no records to tell us when Annah Hamilton died, although she may have died with her husband at the hands of Indians. Their burial place has never been discovered. The above photograph of the historical marker installed on Sligo Road in Rollinsford marks the location of his land that he called home for many years. David was in his mid-60s when he was killed.

While the historical records are not entirely inclusive, it is general accepted that David and Annah Hamilton had seven children, all sons: David, Solomon, Jonathan, Abel, Abial (or Bial), and Jonas. What is interesting and I found worth researching, was that all of their sons were given Old Testament names. What I learned was that in England in the late 1500s, the more common English proper names originating from the New Testament, such as John, Paul, Peter, and Thomas were considered Roman Catholic names by the rising group of Protestants in England such as the Puritans and the Scottish Presbyterians. They chose to avoid these “Catholic” proper names choosing instead names from the Old Testament. Obviously David and Annah strongly adhered to their Presbyterian faith even in the New World.

When David Hamilton died in 1691 he apparently did not leave a will which left the disposition of his property in the hands of the “selectmen of Dover.” What they chose was to order the property sold and the proceeds used “for the maintaining” of David’s eldest son, also named David Hamilton, for “the Hoole of his life.” It was alleged by the selectmen of Dover that young David was a “town charge”. This was in 1697 at which time the young David was 33 years old. He was obviously not a minor in 1697, therefore the reference to his being a town charge, may have been referring to him as the village idiot. There is no mention in these same records of Annah Hamilton therefore it is likely that she died before 1697. Other than David, only their son Gabriel is mentioned in the town records, and it is noted that Gabriel did not protest the disposition of the family property. The other sons whose ages ranged from around 28 to 32 in 1697 were obviously engaged elsewhere and offered no claims on the family property.

Jonas Hamilton, my 8th great grandfather, was born on his family’s farm along the banks of the Great Salmon Falls in the year 1678. He was the seventh child of David and Annah Hamilton and only 14 years old when his parents were slain by Indians. There are no existing records on Jonas in his younger years until his name appeared in church records in New London, Connecticut on September 9, 1708 recording his marriage to Elizabeth Wickwire. Why he chose to move from Rollinsford, New Hampshire to New London, Connecticut is a mystery. It may be the lack of available land near Rollinsford, the lack of available women from which to choose a wife, or the constant Indian conflicts in the area that drove him from home. The Queen Anne’s War had begun in 1706 and he may have joined the military to fight against the French and Indians which eventually led him to settle in Connecticut. Or possibly, he may have elected to serve on one of the many sailing ships that hauled lumber from the southern coast of Maine to the ship building seaport of New London. We will never know his motives but there does appear to be a consensus that Jonas Hamilton, son of David and Annah, is the same Jonas Hamilton who married Elizabeth Wickwire in 1708.

Elizabeth Wickwire’s parents, John Wickware and Mary Tonge, settled in New London shortly after the King Philip’s War of 1675. John was a soldier in the war and was engaged, probably as an officer, in the Great Swamp fight, the final battle of the war against the Indians. For his services he received from the general court a grant of one hundred and forty acres of land in the New London area where he moved and settled in 1676. John had immigrated to Massachusetts around 1650 from Gloucestershire, England. There is a town in England named Wickwire located about twenty-six miles south of Gloucester named after one of the great English lords of the 13th century, John de la Warre, who is thought to be an ancestor of the Wickware family. John met and married his wife, Mary Tonge, in New London in November of 1676. Mary’s parents, George and Margaret Tonge were early settlers of New London arriving sometime before 1656. George Tonge was an innkeeper (“house of entertainment”) most of his life and it is noted that “ . . only trustworthy citizens were recorded this privilege.” Apparently for the Puritans it was important to have someone “trustworthy” serving them ale. John Wickwire and Mary Tonge are my 9th great grandparents.

There is very little in the historical records about the lives of Jonas and Elizabeth (Wickwire) Hamilton. We know that they were baptized together in New London on June 25, 1710. This would be a more interesting fact if I knew the significance of two adults in their early 30s being baptized. Both of them must have been baptized when they were newborns and Jonas I would think, would have been baptized and raised a Presbyterian. Perhaps, they felt the need to join a church and the fact that they were of different faiths required them to be re-baptized as a condition of joining the church. It is unlikely that Elizabeth Wickwire would have been a Presbyterian and based on the fact that her parents arrived in the New World before 1650 from England, Elizabeth was probably an Anglican. In any case, they were admitted to the church and Jonas and Elizabeth were to have nine children born between the years 1709 and 1731 including my 7th great grandfather and their oldest son, Jonathan Hamilton, born on June 17, 1709.

Jonathan Hamilton married Anna Camp on May 9, 1732. Their first child, Bathsheba Hamilton, my 6th great grandmother, was born on December 1, 1732 (I know, less than 9 months following their marriage, hopefully the birth date is wrong), and their second child, Lucy, was born two years later in October of 1734. Anna Camp died on January 9, 1735 at their New London home. She may never have fully recovered from the birth of her second child. She was only 26 years old when she passed away. Jonathan remarried a year later in 1636 and outlived his second wife as well, but not before she gave birth to seven children. Then Jonathan, still very much in need of someone to take care of his home and his family, remarried for a third time in 1761 at the age of 53 and his new and probably much younger third wife, Phebe, gave birth to six additional children. In all, Jonathan fathered 15 children. He was 64 years old when his last child was born. He died only two years later on February 24, 1778 at his home in Horton Township, King’s County, Nova Scotia, exhausted but with a smile on his face.

Fortunately for the Hamilton family, Jonathan was fairly well off having acquired a large quantity of property and a prosperous farm, or “plantation,” as it is referred to in historical accounts in New London County records of the 1700s. It is interesting therefore, to wonder why Jonathan moved his family to Nova Scotia in 1761 shortly following his third marriage.

The French and Indian War was essentially a European war between England and France that began in 1754 and continued until the early 1760s. English history refers to the war as the Seven Years War. In North America it was essentially a series of battles for control of territory not only in Ohio and the “western” lands that were claimed by the French, but also in eastern Canada. The disputed land in Quebec and what is now the Canadian Maritime Provinces was originally settled by French explorers, fur trappers, and farmers and by the mid-1700s this land had been under French control for over 100 years. During the period of the war, the French with their Indian allies also attacked and created havoc with the English settlements to the south in New York and New England. The war in North America was essentially over by 1758 when the French military was defeated and they conceded control of all of their possessions in North America except for the land along the Mississippi River and its tributaries (Jefferson’s “Louisiana Purchase”). The Seven Years War was officially over in Europe with the signing of a peace treaty in Paris in 1763.

The British at this point did something rather unusual even for the 18th century. Beginning around 1658 the British forcibly began the removal of all of the inhabitants in the areas of present day Nova Scotia and Cape Breton. These inhabitants called “Arcadians” were sent away in ships and resettled in South Carolina, Georgia, and even Louisiana. Their cultivated lands and homes were confiscated without reparations. The British justification for these actions was that the Arcadians had supported the French during the conflict, an assertion that was not strongly supported by the facts. The British however, believed that these fertile lands in Nova Scotia could never come completely under English control as long as the land was occupied by French speaking people. Beginning in the following year, a proclamation was issued offering the sale of land in Nova Scotia at very favorable terms and the interest was immediately widespread and great.
Beginning in 1760 shiploads of emigrants left New England for resettlement in Nova Scotia. It is estimated that more than 70% of the new settlers came from Connecticut with many of them from the County of New London, the home of our Jonathan Hamilton. On Sunday, June 7, 1760 a baby named “Betty” was born to Capt. Peter Wickwire (Jonathan Hamilton’s first cousin) and his wife Rhoda “in the harbor of Horton [Nova Scotia]”. This was the first of Jonathan’s relatives to arrive in Nova Scotia. Many were to following including Jonathan and his new wife, and all of Jonathan’s younger children from his second wife who arrived by ship in mid-1761. The ship was loaded with all of their furniture, household supplies, farm tools and even their livestock. In a 1770 Census in Horton Township in King’s County, Nova Scotia, the Jonathan Hamilton family consisted of 1 adult male, 2 adult women, 3 girls, and 3 boys. When I first began the research on Jonathan Hamilton’s immigration to Nova Scotia, I assumed that he was a “Loyalist” and he retired to Nova Scotia because of the pending Revolutionary War. This was a logical conclusion as thousands of Americans left for British controlled Canada in the period immediately preceding the outbreak of war, when loyalty to the crown was an unpopular and even dangerous position to hold. However, in the case of the immigrants to Nova Scotia in the 1760s this was not the case. During the Revolutionary War these “Connecticut Yankees” in Nova Scotia remained neutral with respect to the war. Jonathan Hamilton was the first High Sheriff of King’s County before his death at the age of 69 on February 24, 1778.

Bathsheba Hamilton was 22 years old when she married 24 year old Lebbeus Tubbs also of New London County, Connecticut in 1654. She moved with her husband and three children with her father and his new wife to Nova Scotia in 1761 where she gave birth to a son in 1762. Lebbeus and Bathsheba are my 6th great grandparents. Lebbeus Tubbs and his brother Samuel are both listed in the group of early settlers of Horton Township, King’s County, Nova Scotia along with his father-in-law, Jonathan Hamilton. It is a total mystery why Lebbeus Tubbs and his family elected to leave Nova Scotia in the late 1760s and return to New London. There they joined join a group of New London settlers immigrating to the Wyoming Valley along the Susquehanna River in northeastern Pennsylvania around 1770. Obviously they must have decided they did not want to be Canadian citizens and subject their future descendents to high Canadian taxes and socialized medicine. On the other hand, it is possible that Lebbeus was sympathetic to the America cause for liberty so they returned to Connecticut. Lebbeus Tubbs was a soldier in the American Revolution and was present at the Battle of Wyoming fought on July 3, 1778. The story of the Tubbs family is continued in Chapter 8. Lebbeus and his wife and family later moved to the Elmira, New York area. He died in 1796; Bathsheba died in 1800.

The daughter of Lebbeus Tubbs and Bathsheba Hamilton, Lucy Tubbs (1758-1844) married Lebbeus Hammond (1754-1826); their daughter Mary Hammond (1774-1859) married John Sly (1764-1856); their son Mathew Sly (1815-1876) married Susan Maxwell (1823-1848); their daughter Mary Sly (1844-1917) married Charles Spaulding (1841-1875); Their son Henry Spaulding (1863-1889) married Ella Reynolds (1863-1935); their daughter Helen Spaulding (1887-1937) married my grandfather, Charles Schenck Baker (1885-1952). The end.

1 comment:

Jack Hamilton said...

Hi, My name is John Hamilton. I am a direct descendant of David Hamilton. He was my 7th great grandfather. Through extensive y dna testing and genealogical research I am unable to confirm the pre 1652 Hamilton history as detailed in the Hamiltons of Waterboro, which appears to be the source of your information. I'm curious as to the basis of your conclusions. For instance I cannot find any connection between David and Gabriel other then the Hamiltons of Waterboro, which is an unsubstantiated link. Through DNA testing I have confirmed that we are descended from "The House of Wettin" so there is Royal Blood in our line. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Wettin But my DNA testing does not tie our branch to Scottish or British Royalty. I look forward to hearing from you!

Your Cousin!

John "Jack" Hamilton