Category Archives: Stewart/Stuart Family

Stewarts of Dutchess County, NY, Pre-Revolutionary War Era

Finding pre-Revolutionary War records relating to my Loyalist, Walter Stewart, has been a frustrating experience for years.

Therefore, I am trying a different approach, collecting ALL the Stewart records I can find in Dutchess County, New York in the 1700s up through the Revolutionary War.

In spite of the fact that Stewart/Stuart is not an uncommon surname, it isn’t often found in Dutchess County in the 18th century.

Here are the bits and pieces I’ve been able to cobble together:

Walter Stewart, my Loyalist ancestor, was born c1750, reportedly in Scotland although I’ve never been able to prove it. He married Elizabeth Briggs on 3 March 1774 in The Flats, Poughkeepsie, Dutchess, New York. His marriage is recorded in the records of the Dutch Reformed Church. Walter is found on the 1783 muster roll of the Loyal American Regiment, where he served under Colonel Beverly Robinson and sailed to Canada in the fall 1783 fleet. Walter settled in Sussex, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada, where he spent the rest of his life, passing away c1820.

It is believed that Elizabeth Briggs had no surviving children, if any at all, and that all of Walter’s known children were born in New Brunswick, Canada.

Walter is said to have been a farmer, like his brothers, but I’ve found NO land records for Stewarts in Dutchess County in the right time period.

However, in Canada, Loyalist James Stewart settled in Nashwaak, York, New Brunwick. He was born c1750 and died 1 June 1837. He married Catherine (reportedly Jones) in 1772 in New York, but no record in New York has been uncovered. Widow Catherine Stewart filed for a war pension in Canada c1837 and gave the particulars. James Stewart also served as a corporal under Colonel Beverly Robinson in the Loyal American Regiment.

It is very likely that James is a brother of Walter’s. Besides military service in the same regiment, a distant cousin of mine through Walter Stewart shares DNA with descendants of James. When she notified me about the shared matches, I checked my distant cousins and I, too, share DNA with James’s descendants.

I’ve been able to build families and descendants of Walter and James, but today’s goal is to share pre-war details.

Therefore, I will move on to Isabella Stewart, possibly the widow of a Henry Stewart, who lived in Dutchess County, New York by the 1770s.

This was a Patriot family, given that Isabella’s reported son, William, is in the DAR Patriot Index.

William Stewart was born 23 June 1738, in Scotland, and died on 10 March 1788 in the North East portion of Dutchess County, New York. Like Walter Stewart, William’s marriage record is found in the Dutch Reformed Church. He married Catherine Rowe on 3 December 1771.

I don’t want to read too much into the fact that Walter and William married just over 2 years apart in the same church. That area was heavily settled by German and Dutch immigrants and it may be that the Dutch Reformed Church was the closest church in which they could marry.

William and Catherine had five known children:

1. Catherine, born 16 January 1774, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York; died 26 November 1848, Milan, Dutchess, New York; married William Hermans. This couple is in the DAR Patriot Index.
2. William, born 9 September 1778, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York and baptized on 1 November 1778 in the Reformed Church.
3. Isabella, born 9 October 1780 and baptized on 2 November 1780, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York in the Reformed Church.
4. James, baptized 15 September 1782, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York in the Reformed Church.
5. Henry, married Phebe Sherrill and is in the DAR Patriot Index.

Isabella’s second son, James Stewart, was born c1755. He married Mary Rowe, 30 November 1778, The Flats, Poughkeepsie, Dutchess, New York.

James and Mary were the parents of four known children:

1. Henry, born 13 May 1779, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York in the Reformed Church.
2. John, born 9 December 1780 and baptized 28 October 1781, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York in the Reformed Church.
3. Isabella, born 5 December 1872 and baptized 23 January 1785, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York in the Reformed Church.
4. William, born 19 September 1784 and baptized 23 January 1785, Rhinebeck, Dutchess, New York in the Reformed Church.

There is one more Stewart marriage found in the Dutch Reformed Church records. John Stewart married Mary Granier/Grennier on 25 December 1778 with the notation that both lived in Fishkill, Dutchess County.

This couple left the area and their only known children were baptized at the 1st and 2nd Church in New York City:

1. Margaret, born 29 September 1783 and baptized 14 December 1783.
2. Charles, born 19 February 1786.

Nothing further is known about this family.

Land deeds for Stewarts in Dutchess County have eluded me so far. I don’t know if they were tenant farmers or if they might have received land grants that I haven’t been able to track.

However, Clifford Buck published Dutchess County, NY Tax Lists: 1718-1787 in 1991. There are no copies of this book near Tucson, but I have to thank my longtime genealogy buddy, Nancy Maxwell. She is the genealogy librarian at the Grapevine Public Library, where a copy of Buck’s book resides. She very kindly looked up Stewart entries for me. I was not surprised that there are not many:

  1. Stewart, James, Rhinebeck Precinct, Feb 1747-Jun 1747
  2. Steward, John, Rhinebeck Precinct, 1769
  3. Stewart/Steward, William, North East Precinct, 1771-1779
  4. Steward/Stewart/Stuart, Abraham, Jun 1768-1771, Nine Partners/Crum Elbow Precinct
  5. Steward/Stewart/Stuart, Thomas, 1777-1779, Nine Partners/Crum Elbow Precinct
  6. Stewart/Steward, William, Jun 1769-1770, Nine Partners/Crum Elbow Precinct
  7. Stewart/Steward, Thomas, town of Clinton, no year but probably 1787

I am quite sure that William in the North East Precinct from 1771-1779 is William who married Catherine Rowe and died in 1788 in the North East Precinct.

Probate records haven’t been of much help either, Aside from Catherine (Rowe) Stewart administering the estate of William in 1788, no new clues have been found.

If you have Stewarts in Dutchess County, New York and can add to my knowledge about them, I’d appreciate a comment. 🙂

1861 Deed by Elida Stuart: Help Needed!

UPDATED TRANSCRIPTION – Scroll down to the bottom!

Sometimes, we win the handwriting lottery in old documents and, other times, we don’t. I definitely didn’t win with this deed, created in Calais, Washington, Maine, but filed in Kent County, New Brunswick, Canada.

All I can say is the county clerk shouldn’t have been fired, he should never have gotten the job!

This deed is mercifully short, but there are still a handful of words I haven’t been able to figure out, even though I’ve worked on this for three days!

If you are challenged by hieroglyphics, this is your chance to test your skills!

Here is my transcription, but see below for a crop of the above deed:

Know all men by these presents that I Elida Stuart of the Town of Meddybemps in the County of Washington in the State of Maine for and inconsideration of the sum of twenty pounds lawful money of New Brunswick to me paid by Mariner Hicks of the Parish of Wellington in the County of Kent and Province of New Brunswick the receipt whereof I do hereby acknowledge have granted bargained and sold and by these presents do grant bargain and sell unto the said Mariner Hicks his heirs and assigns one certain piece or parcel of Land situate lying and being on the West side of the Little Buctouche River in the County of Kent aforesaid being all my right title share and interest of in and to all that certain (?) and (?) Land owned by my late father Israel Hicks and bounded on the Westerly Lands occupied by Andrew (Jenet?) and on the East by Lands occupied by the heirs of the late Ira Hicks and containing in the whole ninety acres more or less. To have and to hold the same Lands and premises with the appurtenances to the said Mariner Hicks his heirs and assigns and (?) every (?) who of forever and I do for(?) and (?) with the said Mariner Hicks his heirs and assigns that he is seized of the premises as a (?????) estate of inheritance in fee simple free of and from all manner of encumbrances whatsoever and that I have a good right (?) power and (?) (?) to (?) bargain and sell the same in manner and form as (?) within.

In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this third day of June in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty one.

Elida Stuart (seal)
Signed sealed and
delivered in presence of
ER Chase

State of Maine – Calais June 3rd 1861

Personally appeared Elida Stuart the person who signed (?) and of her own free will acknowledged that she understood the meaning of the above written instrument and that it was her own (free will?) and deed.

Before me ER Chase Mayor of the City of Calais

Here is an enlarged crop of the second half of the deed, where I am missing the most words:

The text (updated after K made several suggestions with which I agree). Note that I have looked for this Andrew in the 1851, 1861 and 1871 censuses of Kent County, New Brunswick. I can’t find him OR any surname that looks anything like what is written in this deed. I also figured out a couple more words.:

occupied by Andrew (Jenet? Gand?) and on the East by Lands occupied by the heirs of the late Ira Hicks and containing in the whole ninety acres more or less. To have and to hold the same Lands and premises with the appurtenances to the said Mariner Hicks his heirs and assigns and with every (?) (who of?) forever and I assign my heirs executors and administrators (???) with the said Mariner Hicks his heirs and assigns that he is seized of the premises as a good indispensible estate of inheritance in fee simple free of and from all manner of encumbrances whatsoever and that I have a good right with power and lawful (?) to (?) bargain and sell the same in manner and form as (?) within.

I would appreciate any help you can provide – even if it is only a word or two. It takes a village and the indecipherable words are being decoded bit by bit. Thank you! 🙂

Loyalist Walter Stewart: Big Update, Part 4!

This is the final post covering the grandchildren of Loyalist Walter Stewart by his third wife, Althea (Wetmore) (Craft) Stewart.

They had six children:

1. Elizabeth Ann, born c1804; died after 1848, when Harriet was reportedly born; married William Wetmore, 7 June 1823. William was reportedly born 4 September 1795; died 3 December 1853 in New Brunswick, Canada. However, I can’t find this family in 1851. They apparently lived in Saint John and that census is missing. I don’t know the source for these children, but John and Susanna both have Massachusetts death records naming their parents.

Children:

1. John W., born 1830, St. John, New Brunswick, Canada; died 9 November 1901, Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts; married Abigail Verrill, 16 October 1855, Portland, Cumberland, Maine. They had five children – Wallace E., Charles O., Charlotte E., Ulysses S. Grant and Alfred Thomas.
2. Charity Amelia, born 20 July 1832, New Brunswick, Canada; died 29 December 1917, Berkeley, Alameda, California; married William Puddington Wetmore. They had 6 children – Charles William, Frederick Ward, Mary J., Hattie Elizabeth, Lily May and William Nelson.
3. Susanna Jane, born 1835; died 12 February 1907, Woburn, Middlesex, Massachusetts; married John William Munroe, 3 October 1856, Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. They had 5 children; Aaron William, Mary Elizabeth, Reuben Jesse, Harley titus and Charles Everett.
4. James Blakeney, born 8 March 1841, New Brunswick, Canada; died 28 August 1901, Spring Lake, Ottawa, Michigan; married Miriam Munroe, 1863, Kings County, New Brunswick, Canada. Miriam was born 1 March 1844, Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada; died 12 August 1930, Fettysburg, Ottawa, Michigan. This family moved often with children born in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, Boston, Massachusetts, Cincinnati, Ohio, Liberty Township, Ohio, Hillsboro, Ohio and possibly Kentucky. They had 8 children – Samuel Ivan, Mary Adelaide, Miriam R., Annie Lyle, James Blakeney, Elizabeth Sarah, and Milton Thomas.
5. William Thomas, born 11 January 1844, New Brunswick, Canada; died 29 November 1926, Chicago, Cook, Illinois; married Sarah Susan Troutwine. They had 5 children – Carrie May, Frances Estella, Harriet A., Charles Quinn and Nellie Lou.
6. Harriet E., born c1848; no further information

2. Caleb James, born c1809; reportedly died 7 February 1878, but I can’t find him in any census after 1851; reportedly went by James; married Amy S. Golding, 13 November 1830. She was born c1830; died 19 March 1859.  In 1851, the family lived in Hampton, Kings County. If going by James, he may be the 1861 James Stewart, 49,  living in Sussex, Kings County, New Brunswick with wife Ellen, aged 28 and children John 8, James 7, William H. 5 and Mary E., also 5.

Children:

1. John Henry, born c1833; died after 1851; no further information
2. Charles, born c1835; died after 1851; no further information

3. Charles – I don’t know the source of attributing a son
Charles to Walter and Althea Stewart, but he apparently died young, unmarried and left no descendants.

4. Deborah Catherine, born c1808-1810, per census records; died 11 February 1873, probably Kings County, New Brunswick; married George Puddington, 16 May 1823, Kingston, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada. George was born 19 June 1805; died 8 November 1883 and is buried in Sussex, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada. The newspaper reports that George was 16 and Deborah 13 when they married!

The Kings County census records are not available on the LAC website, but this is a list of their supposed children, which I haven’t been able to verify.

Children:

1. Clarissa J., born 1825; died 1918; married Charles Williams, 3 July 1845, Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. They had 8 children – Levinia, Malvenia M.G., Charlotte Annie, Melissa Ethelinda, Mary E., George Thomas Penn, Charles Edward, Frederick, and Burnham
2. James, born 1827; died 1853; no further information
3. Mary Ann, born 9 February 1830; reportedly died 1903, but I have no further information
4. Margaret, born 1833; died 19 February 1881, probably Queens County, New Brunswick, Canada; married William David McConchie, 16 February 1854, Kingston, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada. They had 8 children – Eliza, Phebe, Adelia, Anne A., Henrietta, William Gordon, Alice M. and Amy Alberta.
5. George H., born 1834; died 1896, probably Queens County, New Brunswick, Canada; married Phebe Brown. They had 9 children – Elizabeth Ann, Orland Herbert, William Ernest, George Clifford, Ruth, John Henry, Drucilla Phoebe, Eliza Jane and Gilbert.
6. Thomas Edwin, born 2 October 1837; died 2 October 1912, Rochester, Ulster, New York; married Rhoda A. Crowell, 11 November 1863. They had four children – Arthur Wesley, Harriet Stewart, Bessie Lillian and Harry Hudson.
7. Edmund, born 1 January 1840; died 1902; married Sarah A. Campbell. They had one child – Percy B.
8. Oscar Wellington, born 28 October 1842; died 20 October 1905; married Frances Jane Smith, 1 March 1866, Windsor, Hants, Nova Scotia, Canada. They had ten children – Florence, Deborah Martha, Araminta, William Oscar, Edmund Kelly, Geoerge Arthur, Jennie Wetmore, Lucy Madeline, Emma Stewart and Katherine Stewart.
9. Benjamin, born 1845; died 1847
10. Alfred E., born 1850; died 1851
11. Deborah Catherine, born 7 July 1854, Clifton, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada; married (1) David Erasmus Wetmore, 30 June 1875 (2) Samuel Codner, 1897, St. John, New Brunswick, Canada. David and Deborah Wetmore had four children – Oscar Wainwright, Irene Beatrice, Eugenia Mildred and Mabel Evelyn. Samuel and Deborah Codner had no known children.

5. Althea Jane Wetmore, born c1813; died 4 February 1875, Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada and called widow of David in the Saint John Daily News; married (1) William Branscombe, 5 April 1841 (2) David Ross, c1853.

Children (Branscombe):

1, Lavinia A., born c1841; at home with David and Jane Ross in 1861; no further information
2. Charles Edwin, born c1842; died after 1881; married Elizabeth (MNU), c1870. They had 4 children – Abigail, Weethy, Anna and Mary
3. John Walker, born January 1846; died 12 August 1863, aged 17 years, 7 months.
4. Elizabeth Ann, born December 1850; likely died young as she is not at home in 1861.

Children (Ross):

1. George, born c1854; probably Kings, New Brunswick, Canada; died after 1871; no further record
2. Frederick, born c1857, probably Kings, New Brunswick, Canada; died after 1871; no further record

6. Esther Susannah Wetmore, born 11 April 1815, Kingston, Kings, New Brunswick, Canada; died 29 August 1908, Richmond, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada; married Thomas William Golding, 13 January 1835, probably Kings County, New Brunswick, Canada.

Children:

  1. Charles Stephen, born 31 March 1836; died 12 September 1871, Woodstock, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada; apparently unmarried.
  2. Rebecca Ruth, born 1838; died 1862; apparently unmarried.
  3. Frances Elizabeth, born 30 May 1840; died 28 February 1928, McAdam, York, New Brunswick, Canada; married (1) William Dyer, 17 February 1863, Woodstock, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada (2) John E. Casey, 17 August 1886, York, New Brunswick, Canada. Frances apparently had no children with either William Dyer or John Casey.
  4. Thomas William, born 6 October 1842; died 14 October 1927, McAdam, York, New Brunswick, Canada; married Ellen Jane O’Neill, 4 October 1873, Houlton, Aroostook, Maine. They had 9 children – Angus Victor, Charles Albert, Amelia Frances, Alice Maud, Ruth Rebecca, Mary Pearl, John Frederick, George William and Thomas Allen.
  5. Harriet E., born 12 May 1847; 27 July 1927, McAdam, York, New Brunswick, Canada; married (1) Joseph Crawford, c1872 (2) George Cook, 15 February 1922, York, New Brunswick, Canada. Joseph and Harriet had 2 children – Mary Ann and Ernest S.
  6. Esther Ann, born February 1849; died 23 June 1929, McAdam, York, New Brunswick, Canada; married John Lenahan, 26 December 1880, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada. They may have divorced and had no children. No further information.
  7. George Marshal, born 3 May 1850; died 4 August 1936, McAdam, York, New Brunswick, Canada; married Octavia Lilley, 16 August 1888. They had one son, Thomas William.
  8. James Franklin, born 6 February 1855, Carleton New Brunswick, Canada; died 18 September 1936, McAdam, York, New Brunswick, Canada; married Augusta Amelia Lovelace, c1880. They had 6 children: Mabel Alice, Althea Jane, Ida May, Mary Elizabeth, Augusta Ann and James Adelbert.
  9. Charlotte Amelia, born 18 July 1859, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada; died 20 March 1946, Cumberland Bay, Waterborough, Queens, New Brunswick, Canada; married Thomas Warren Letson, 1894, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada. They had 9 children – Bertha E., Lena Louise, Robert Roy, George William, Annie Hazel, Minnie Pearl, Gladys Lillian, Viola Octavia and Birkett Elwood.
  10. John Frederick, born 8 November 1861; died 11 March 1863, Woodstock, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada
  11. Emily Jane, born 25 September 1863Woodstock, Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada; died 1940, Massachusetts; married Alexander Wellington McCullah, 11 April 1887, New Brunswick, Canada. They had 3 children – Rollie R., Mary Esther and Robert W.

As you can see from all these grandchildren and great grandchildren, Walter Stewart has many descendants today. If you are one of them, please leave a comment.