It isn’t often that I have an opportunity to add more than one generation to any of my New England lines simply because they all arrived in the 1600’s and The New England Historic Genealogical Society is a premier resource.
However, not long ago, I was looking at the pedigree chart I started way back in 1979 – and which is filled in by typewriter – and wondering if any of my New England lines could be extended any further. I haven’t really worked on my colonial lines in years as I’ve kept busy with my husband’s family and the empty branch on my tree that has become a blossoming Scandinavian line.
I’ve written about Henry Burt’s wife’s family – the Huguenot Marche family. My line of descendants lived in Ridgefield, Connecticut as the colonies approached the Revolutionary War. In fact, my Burts were Loyalists who fled to New Brunswick in 1783.
However, the parents of my Loyalist Benjamin Burt were Seaborn Burt and his wife, Susannah. Now, everyone has to love having an ancestor named Seaborn, if for no other reason than he was the only one with that unique name. (His parents were captured by Indians and taken to Canada during the raid on Deerfield, Massachusetts. He was born during the boat journey back home and was thus named Seaborn.)
I had never seen any surname proposed for Seaborn’s wife, Susannah. Seaborn was supposedly born on 4 July 1706 en route from Quebec to Boston, but all I can find is that the trip happened over several weeks in the summer so the birth date is possible, but no record has been located confirming it.
While trolling family trees on line (and we know how accurate many of them are!), I came across multiple trees that said Seaborn’s wife was Susannah Lobdell. Of course, the “sourced” trees gave as the source – Ancestry family trees! If there was a tree that actually had any real proof, I didn’t find it, but the Lobdell family was in the right place at the right time for a member of the family to marry Seaborn.
Next, I looked for a Lobdell family history book on line since it was a fairly unique surname. A quick search brought up Simon Lobdell – 1646 of Milford, Conn. and His Descendants. Nicholas Lobden (Lobdell) – 1635 of Hingham, Mass. and Some of his Descendants by Julia Harrison Lobdell.
Even better, FamilySearch has a digitized version of the book. It didn’t take long to find evidence supporting the marriage of Seaborn Burt to Susannah Lobdell:
Page 14 mentions a land deed filed in Springfield, Massachusetts in book S in 1743 listing the heirs of Joshua Lobdell, father of Susannah Lobdell Burt. FamilySearch has the Massachusetts Land Records 1630-1800 digitized and in the index under “Lobdell,” I find:
There are Lobdells mentioned in Book S, but now I have the page number – 432.
There in Line 3 is what I am looking for – Seaborn Burt and Susannah Burt of Ridgefield, Connecticut. Since the only other Seaborns that pop up are descendants of this first Seaborn, I would say that Seaborn Burt did indeed marry Susannah Lobdell probably in Ridgefield sometime before 31 October 1743.
There was one further page of interest in the Lobdell history. Page 19 includes information from the Burt history. First, it includes the account of the birth of Seaborn on the voyage back to Boston. It also states that Seaborn Burt sold land to his brother Daniel on 12 March 1749/50 and then removed from the town to places unknown:
The information about removing from the town in 1749 is not correct because Ridgefield, Connecticut births found in The Barbour Collection of Connecticut Vital Records to 1870 include all known children up to the birth of Theophilus in 1756.
Children of Seaborn and Susannah Burt, all born Ridgefield:
1. Thankful, born 3 November 1738
2. Benjamin, born 29 December 1741
3. Joshua, born 21 March 1743
4. Mary, born 12 May 1746
5. Susannah, born 18 August 1748
6. David, born 12 February 1750
7. Theophilus, born 14 May 1752; died September 1753
8. Theophilus, born 31 March 1756
I also don’t believe that Seaborn moved away from Ridgefield. Some of the records in Ridgefield are spotty, but there is one more Burt record of interest there, also found in The Barbour Collection. A death record appears for widow Susannah Burt, who died 21 December 1803 “in the 94th yr. of her age.” Susannah Lobdell was born 5 March 1709/1710. There are no other Susannah Burts her age and the 94th year of her age fits well with the recorded birth date of Susannah Lobdell in Milford, Connecticut.
It seems more likely that Seaborn Burt died in Ridgefield, but either no will or probate was completed or the records have been lost.
However, I have proved to my own satisfaction that Seaborn did marry Susannah Lobdell and the Lobdell family history by Julia Harrison Lobdell provided not only the family of Susannah’s parents but her grandparents. Further research found that Nicholas Lobdell was the immigrant and is likely the Nicholas Lobdell who had son Symon baptized in Northam, Devon, England on 23 December 1632.
The clues on the online family trees were accurate, but it would have been nice to find the documentation which I found. It only took about thirty minutes to document the data in this post.