Archive for February 23rd, 2013

Amanuensis Monday – Snow Day Happy Dance – Ancestor Thomas Hurlbut

On Thursday, February 21st, 2013, South Central Kansas had a blizzard! Wichita, Kansas had in excess of 14″. My little town, just south of Wichita, received somewhere around 6″ plus.

But it was just enough to declare a “snow day” holiday!  The school kids were all out building snowmen, so I dumped the income tax I’d been working on and hit the Internet beginning with FindaGrave.com looking for ancestors.

I hit pay dirt!

I located one Stocking ancestor’s Memorial after another, (thank you, Find A Grave  and Find a Grave volunteers!!) and then lo and behold, someone had posted some information on my ancestress Deborah Hurlbut Stocking’s Find a Grave memorial, (her info to come on a later post!) along with the source, which led me to a Google search, and a Google book, “The Hurlbut Genealogy,” and that book detailed Deborah’s ancestry, along with her immigrant ancestor, Thomas, who was wounded with a Pequot arrow (see below!).

Do I know that every name and date is correct in Deborah’s ancestry?

No, I don’t. But now I have a new road map of names to hunt up/hunt down and verify! And new family stories to enjoy!

Below is Thomas Hurlbut’s info, Deborah’s ancestor!

“The Hurlbut Genealogy:
Record of the Descendants of Thomas Hurlbut
by Henry H. Hurlbut
Joel, Munsell’s Sons, Publishers, 1888
p. 15 – 18

Thomas Hurlbut (ref # 001) came across the Atlantic, it is supposed, in the year 1635, for he was a soldier under Lion Gardiner, who built and had command of the fort at Saybrook, Connecticut.

Lion Gardiner, it is said, was an Englishman, and by profession an engineer, and had been in Holland in the service of the Prince of Orange, but was engaged by the proprietors of the Connecticut Patent, issued by Charles II to Lord Say and Seal, Lord Brooks and others, granting a large tract of territory on the banks of the Connecticut river, to erect a fortification at its mouth.

Gardiner, said Judge Savage, embarked at London in the Bachilor, of only 25 tons, 11 August, 1635, with his wife and female servant, and eleven male passengers, and after a long and tempestuous voyage, arrived at Boston 28 of following November. It is believed, however, that Gov. Winthrop told that Gardiner sailed in a Norsey barque (a fishing vessel of the coast of Norway), 10 July 1635.

It is supposed that Thomas Hurlbut was one of the 11 passengers above referred to; but who his parents were or when or where he was born, we have not been able to learn. We may yet pretty confidently believe that his birth occurred as early as the year 1610, and I am more inclined to believe that he was a native of Scotland than I am able, perhaps, to show satisfactory evidence for such belief.

Mr. Hurlbut while at Saybrook, in an encounter with the Pequot Indians in 1637, was wounded by an arrow. This appears in a letter of Lion Gardiner, written in June, 1660, some 23 years after the skirmish with the Indians, addressed to Robert Chapman and Thomas Hurlbut, detailing incidents regarding the Pequot war, as far as came within his personal knowledge.

Captain Gardiner, as the communication named, says that Mr. Robert Chapman, Thomas Hurlbut and Major Mason urged him to do it, “and (P. 16) having rumaged and found some old papers then written, it was a great help to my memory.”

The document laid in manuscript until 1833 (173 years) when it was printed in Volume 3, 3rd Ser. of Mass. Historical Soc colls.

The following is an extract (from the manuscript):

“In the 22nd of February, I went out with ten men and three dogs, half a mile from the house (fort) to burn the Weeds, Leaves and Reeds upon the Neck of Land, because we had felled twenty timber trees which we were to roll to the Waterside to bring home, every Man carrying a length of Match with some Brimstone-matches with him to kindle the Fire withal.

But when we came to the small of the Neck, the Weeds burning, I having before this set two Sentinels on the small of the Neck, I called to the Men that were burning the Reeds to come away, but they would not until they had burnt up the rest of their Matches.

Presently there starts up four Indians out of the fiery Reeds, but they ran away, I calling to the rest of our Men to come away out of the Marsh. Then Robert Chapman and Thomas Hurlbut, being Sentinels, called to me saying there came a Number of Indians out of the other side of the Marsh.

Then I went to stop them, that they should not get the Woodland; but Thomas Hurlbut cried out to me that some of the Men did not follow me, for Thomas Rumble and Arthur Branch threw down their two Guns and ran away; then the Indians shot two of them that were in the Reeds, and sought to get between us and Home, but durst not come before us, but kept us in a Half moon, we retreating and exchanging many a Shot, so that Thomas Hurlbut was shot almost through the Thigh, John Spencer in the back into his Kidneys, myself into the Thigh, two more shot dead.

But in our Retreat, I kept Hurlbut and Spencer still before us, we defending ourselves with our naked Swords, or else they had taken us all alive, so that the two sore wounded Men, by our slow Retreat, (p. 17) got home with their Guns, when our two sound Men ran away and left their Guns behind them.”

Gardiner does not mention his estimate of the number of the assailants, but Underwood, in his History, says there were “a hundred or more.”

Mr. Hurlbut was by Trade a Blacksmith…

Mr. Hurlbut was by trade a blacksmith, and after the war with the Pequots, he located and established himself in business at Wethersfield, Ct., and was one of the early settlers of that place, as well as first blacksmith. A single extract from the Colonial Records would seem to indicate that he was a good workman and charged a good price for his work: “March 2, 1642. Thomas Hallibut was fined 40 shillings for encouraging others in taking excessive rates for work and ware.”

But this fine appears to have been “respited” Feb 5, 1643, upon Peter Bassaker’s tryal to make “nayles” with less loss and cheaper rates.He seems to have been a man of good standing in the place; he was Clerk of the “Train Band” in 1640, Deputy to the General court, Grand Juror and also constable in 1644.

It appears on the records that he received various tracts of land in the several divisions of the town, which were recorded together in 1647. In 1660 the Town of Wethersfield granted Thomas Hurlbut Lot 39, one of the “four score acre lots” (in Naubec, east side of the river), which he afterward sold to Thomas Hollister. For his services in the Indian wars, the Assembly voted him a grant of 120 acres of land Oct. 12, 1671.

It is supposed that Mr. Hurlbut died soon after the last named date, as no evidence appears that the land was set off to him during his life. In that early day of the Colony, land was plenty and cheap, and no attempt appears to have been made to avail himself of the bounty, nor even by his sons; it was not until 1694, on the petition of John Hurlbut, Jr. of Middletown, a grandson of the settler and soldier, that it was set off.(p. 18) It is told, and the tradition is not an unreasonable one to credit, that the house in Wethersfield, CT, where Miss Harriet Mitchell resides in 1888, stands upon the site of the dwelling of the first Hurlbut who lived in the settlement. (Miss M. is said to be of the 6th generation from her ancestor Thomas Hurlbut.)

That house of the early settler, as tradition gives, had peculiar attractions for the Indians, whether with the purpose to inspect the architecture of the edifice, or else to get a view of the proprietor of the mansion, for he had been an Indian fighter formerly, I cannot say; but often, when in the village, they were to be seen looking curiously in at the windows.

The Christian name of the wife of Mr. Hurlbut was Sarah, but nothing further is known; no date of birth, marriage, nor death. The dates of birth of five of their six sons are missing; whether there were any daughters or not, is not known.

During the contention that existed in the Church of Wethersfield, the early records of both the Town and Church, it is understood, disappeared.

Thomas and Sarah’s Children:

2. Thomas, Jr. +
3. John, b. 8 Mar 1642
4. Samuel. +
5. Joseph +
6. Stephen +
7. Cornelius

Thomas’ son, John Hurlbut:  http://www.familytreewriter.com/2013/03/amanuensis-monday-john-hurlbut/

The Hurlbut Genealogy: The Descendants of Thomas Hurlbut

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