Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Abijah Hitchings' Cow in 1799 - But which Abijah Hitching was it?


The Salem Gazette, Tuesday, 16 July 1799; Salem, Massachusetts; Volume XIII; Issue 829; page 4

This notice of a lost cow (above) appeared in the Salem newspaper in 1799.  I knew immediately that it was one of my ancestors because of the unusual name of Abijah Hitchings.  But which Abijah?  Can you believe that there are five Abijah Hitchings in my family tree, all living in Salem, Massachusetts between 1753 and 1910?  There may have been more that I don't know about, too! 

The first clue is Salem.  The advertisement is from the Salem newspaper, and it includes the wording "Salem, July 5".  Unfortunately, all my Abijah Hitchings lived in Salem, so that was not very helpful.

Next is the date of 1799.  I used the date to eliminate some of the Abijah's in my tree. 

My 5th great grandfather, Abijah Hitchings, lived between 1753 and 1826 

My 4th great grandfather, Abijah Hitchings, lived between 1775 and 1868

My 3rd great grandfather, Abijah Hitchings, lived between 1809 and 1864

My 2nd great grandfather, Abijah Franklin Hitchings, lived between 1841 and 1910. 

From these dates, I can guess that it was either of the two first Abijah Hitchings who lost the cow, since the rest were not born by 1799.  And my 4th great grandfather, Abijah Hitchings was just 24 years old in 1799, and had been married just three years, with one young child living at home (you guessed it - that child was Abijah Hitchings (1798 - 1803)).  His father, my 5th great grandfather, was 46 years old, married since 1775, with four children by two different wives still living at home.  Either one of these could have owned the lost cow.

I know from The Diary of William Bentley, Volume 2, page 468, that Rev. Bentley visited the elder Abijah Hitchings (my 5th great grandfather) often, and in March 1799 he mentioned the "small house on the Hitchens lot on Beckett Street".  This Abijah was veteran of the Revolutionary War, and a housewright in Salem. 

But, just two doors down (according to the 1810 census) Abijah, Jr. lived with his family.  He was a carpenter and a shipwright, and only married once. His first child was named Abijah Hitchings III, but he died young and they named their seventh child (out of eleven!) Abijah Hitchings in 1809 (my 3rd great grandfather).  Rev. Bentley also visited this family very often, and mentioned the visits in his diaries. When he died in 1868 he was the oldest man in Salem. 

Any guesses on who owned the lost cow?

For the truly curious:

Surname Saturday - My HITCHINGS lineage:    https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/2014/10/surname-saturday-hitchings-of-lynn.html   

A blog post about Rev. Bentley's diary and the Hitchings family in Salem:    https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/2010/09/amanuensis-monday-excepts-from-rev.html  

Click here to read all my blog posts that mention COWS!  LOL!    https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/search/label/cows


To cite/link to this blog post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Abijah Hitchings' Cow in 1799 - But which Abijah Hitching was it?", Nutfield Genealogy, posted April 23, 2024, ( https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/2024/04/abijah-hitchings-cow-in-1799-but-which.html: accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

The Odiorne Family, from the Odiorne Burial Ground, Rye, New Hampshire

 These tombstones were photographed at the Wallis-Odiorne Burial Ground on Bracket Road in Rye, New Hampshire.  Most of the inscriptions are legible, but unfortunately the smaller poetry epitaphs are mostly illegible. 

Nov. 4, 1869
Aged 72 yrs, 1 mo. &
8 days.

???? [illegible]

wife of Wm S. Odiorne,
April 7, 1867,
Aged 66 yrs, 3 mos.
Dearest Mother thou hast left us
and thy loss we deeply feel;
But 'tis God that has bereft us,
He can all our sorrows heal.
She sleeps in Jesus and is blest,
???? her slumber may
??? suffering and from sin released
And freed from every ???

Dec. 3, 1831,
Aged 57 yrs, 2 mos.

wife of
Trueman S. Odiorne
Aug. 16, 1894
AEt. 56 yrs,11 mos
12 days


William Seavey Odiorne was born 26 September 1797 in Rye, New Hampshire, the son of Ebenezer Odiorne and Mary Seavey.  He married Mary T. Amazeen on 9 July 1823. She was the daughter of Ephraim Amazeen and Hannah Tarleton.  The Amazeen family goes back in time to the immigrant John Amazeen, who was described as "John Amazeen, an Italian" by Charles Brewer, a Portsmouth historian. William and Mary Odiorne had nine children, and some are buried here in this burial ground.

Truman Seavey Odiorne is the oldest child of William and Mary.  He was born in 1822 in Rye, and married Mary Olive Moulton, the daughter of Joseph Moulton and Lydia Marston on 23 April 1864 in Rye.  She was born in 1837 and died 16 august 1894 in Rye. They had five children: William Wallace b. 11 Sept. 1864; Jonathan Everett b. 18 July 1866; Lydia Ann b. 13 Aug. 1869; Charlotte Seavey b. 3 August 1872; and Mary Amazeen b. 12 Dec. 1873. 

I am an Odiorne descendant, and William Seavey Odiorne is my 4th cousin, 5 generations removed.   Our common ancestor is the immigrant John Odiorne, born about 1625 in Shevlock, Cornwall, England and died 1707 in New Castle, New Hampshire. John Odiorne's parents and siblings first lived on the Isles of Shoals off the coast of Portsmouth, and were later granted land at Great Island, now known as New Castle.  John later purchased the land that is now Odiorne State Park in Rye.  

For the truly curious:

"Surname Saturday - Odiorne" a blog post from 5 November 2011

Find A Grave, Truman Seavey Odiorne:   https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/182148226/truman_seavey_odiorne   

Portsmouth Athenaeum, Truman Seavey Odiorne:     https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/182148226/truman_seavey_odiorne 

Also, a sketch on John Amazeen "an Italian?"   http://kristinhall.org/fambly/Amazeen/JohnAmazeen.html 

To cite/link to this blog post:  Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "The Odiorne Family, from the Odiorne Burial Ground, Rye, New Hampshire", Nutfield Genealogy, posted April 16, 2024, ( https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/2024/04/the-odiorne-family-from-odiorne-burial.html: accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Reverend Ebenezer Coffin, died 1816 Newbury, Massachusetts for Tombstone Tuesday

 This tombstone was photographed at the First Parish Burial Ground in Newbury, Massachusetts.

In memory of
aged 45
Faith, hope and Charity
His soul possesses the three.
Erected by his son
Robert Stevenson Coffin

Ebenezer Coffin was born 15 February 1769 in Newbury, Massachusetts, the son of Reverend Joshua Coffin and Sarah Bartlett. He went to Harvard College, and graduated in 1789. He was ordained as a Congregational pastor at the church in Brunswick, Maine in 1792.   Ebenezer married Mary Newhall on 25 September 1793 in Brunswick. She was the daughter of Samuel Newhall and Elizabeth Sprague of Newburyport. They had five children born in Brunswick and removed back to Newbury in 1802 where he was the school teacher.  Ebenezer died on 26 January 1816.  

Robert Stevenson Coffin was the second child of Rev. Ebenezer Coffin.  He was born in Brunswick and when the family relocated to Newbury he was apprenticed to a printer. During the War of 1812 he was a sailor aboard a ship that was captured by the British and the entire crew was imprisoned, and later released. He worked at a printer in Boston and in Philadelphia. He was a poet known as the "Boston Bard", but later became "intemperate" and died in Rowley, Massachusetts in 1827.  Robert Stevenson Coffin never married. 

Ebenezer Coffin's other children were Newhall, Eloisa, Horace, and Cazneau Bayley, who died in September 1826 when struck by lightning on the ship Hogart off the coast of Texas.   


To cite/link to this blog post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Reverend Ebenezer Coffin, died 1816 Newbury, Massachusetts for Tombstone Tuesday", Nutfield Genealogy, posted April 9, 2024, ( https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/2024/04/reverend-ebenezer-coffin-died-1816.html: accessed [access date]). 

Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Margaret Muzzey, died 1787 in Newbury, Massachusetts


Mournfull Stone is
Erected to ye Memory of
Miss Margaret Muzzey
the only Child of Mr. Joseph
and Mrs Lydia Muzzey
who after a long & painfull
sickness which she bore with
Unexampled patience
Exchanged this Mortal for an
immortal state Decr. ye 8th
1787 In the 23rd year of
her age.
What tho this body turns to dust
It can't disturb my rest
May I but dwell with Christ above
To be for ever blest. 

Margaret Muzzy, born 12 January 1765 in Newbury, Essex County, Massachusetts, and died 18 December 1787 in Newbury, was buried at the First Parish Burial Ground in Newbury.  She was the daughter of Joseph Muzzey (1731 - 1801) and Lydia Stickney (1733 - 1799) married on 26 May 1756 in Newbury.  

We often think that the Puritans, who lost so many babies to childhood diseases, were cold hearted and stoic.  This tombstone shows two parents mourning the loss of an only child.  It is an example of how our assumptions are wrong, and the parents of the eighteenth century were just like us today. 


To cite/link to this blog post: Heather Wilkinson Rojo, "Margaret Muzzey, died 1787 in Newbury, Massachusetts", Nutfield Genealogy, posted April 2, 2024, ( https://nutfieldgenealogy.blogspot.com/2024/04/margaret-muzzey-died-1787-in-newbury.html: accessed [access date]).