Number Twenty- Eight - The Baldwin Family Cont'd
Written by Joshua G. Borthwick and originally published
on April 21, 1883, in the Catskill "Examiner". Copy
provided by the Durham
Center Museum and retyped by Annette Campbell
A few things mentioned in the last sketch seem to require attention. I fear
that the "curious fact" in regard to the remnant of the Baldwin
family in this town will not be understood. The fact is this: that while the
blood of the Baldwins is still coursing through the veins of
several families in Durham, yet the Baldwin name is
represented here by only Noah Baldwins descendants, viz: Hezekiah,
and Elizabeth, William and his family, and Lewis
and his family---ten in all. There are a few mistakes also, which ought
to be corrected. Betsey Baldwin was 87 years of age at her
death. Mabel Jones was the daughter of Seth Jones,
not "Setty", as printed. James J. Baldwin
married Carrdace Beach, not "Caudace", and while Stephen
Tibbals and Fanny, his wife, had five children, now
only two---Hezekiah and Jonathan remain.
The mother is also dead. In Sketch No, 26, it is said that Dwight
Baldwin was the eldest son of Abiel Baldwin, Sr. He was the son
of Seth Baldwin, and a grandson of Abiel Baldwin, Sr.
Now we will turn to the history as commenced in Sketch No. 27.
Mehitable Baldwin was the tenth child of Noah
Baldwin, Sr., and was born in Durham, Conn., June 22, 1776. She
married Luther Hayes, who was born in Middle Granville,
Mass., in 1772. They came to Durham, NY, early in the history of the
town, and lived in the house now owned by K. Baker in the
village. He was a tinware and hardware merchant, and by honest industry he acquired
a competence. He united with the Presbyterian church June 17, 1810.
He was chosen Elder in the church, and was installed Nov. 18, 1830. He was a
faithful christian man. He became so feeble in his old age that he could not
kneel down in prayer at family worship, and it was his custom to sit in his
chair and thus offer his prayers while the family knelt about him. He died May
4, 1858, aged 86. "Aunt Hetty", his wife, was
a very cheerful, pleasant little woman, and an earnest, trustful christian.
She united with the church in 1822, and died in 1860, aged 84. They had nine
children, viz: Philo; Eveline married Lucius
Hitchcock of Big Hollow. Luther, married twice, and
now lives in Greenville. He has a son John Newton, who is a
missionary to China. Climera married Eli
Spencer, and died in 1862. Newton F. married and
removed to Gloversville. Harriett L. married Nehemiah
Ramsdell, of Norton Hill. William B; Addison H. succeeded
to his father's business and also to his office in the church; and was
supervisor of the town, and was much respected. He married Evangela
Everett, a sister of Capt. J. H. Everett, of
Kingston, NY. In 1866 he removed to Kingston, and afterward to Catskill, where
he died. His widow still survives. Vestina Z. married William
Noble, of Roxbury, NY.
Rhoda Baldwin was the eleventh and youngest child of Noah
Baldwin, Sr., and was born in Durham, Conn., about the year 1779. She
married Constant Bushnell, of Saybrook Conn., and they came
to Durham, NY., about the year 1800, and settled on land now owned by Mr.
Fletcher Smith. The house stood on the South side of the road,
about ten rods S.E. of the residence of Mr. Dwight Hull.
They were members of the same church, and in 1815 they removed their
membership to Sullivan, Madison county, NY. They afterward removed to
Marshall, Mich. We can give names of nine children, viz: Sarah,
Adah, Ruth, Lavinia, Rachel, Jonas, Linus, Andrew, and Noah.
There were other Bushnell's in the town at that
time, but how they were related is uncertain. Calvin Bushnell,
became a minister. Maria Bushnell married a Freer,
and removed to Windham, and Reuben, Stephen and Wealthy
Bushnell were all at one time residents of this town.
The name Baldwin can probably be traced further back in
history than any other modern name. It is claimed by several
nationalities: English, French, Italian, German and Danish. It seems
however, to have originated in Flanders as early as the year 864. The
first Count of Flanders married Judith, the daughter of Charles
the Bald, of France. His first name, it appears, was Baldwin,
and he was surnamed Bras de Fer (Iron Arm). He died in
879, and his successors were called Baldwin II, III, IV, V, and
so on until we reach Baldwin IX, who became the first Emperor
of Constantinople after her subjugation in the fourth Crusade. He was
succeeded by his nephew, Baldwin II. Their united reign
lasted from 1204 to 1261. Baldwin seems to have been a
favorite name among the Crusaders---a sort of kingly title given to the
rulers. Where Jerusalem was captured by the Crusaders in 1110 there were
five successive kings of that city who wore that name as a title---from Baldwin
I to Baldwin V, and from the years 1110 to 1187.
After the Conquest of England in 1066 by the Normans under the command of William
the Conqueror, the name occurs frequently in that country. Even William
himself married Matilda, the daughter of Baldwin V., one
of the Earls of Flanders. Surnames, however, were not used in England at
this early date. The first mention of Baldwin as a surname
was in 1198, when Robert Fitz Baldwin was spoken of as owning
land in Bucks Co., Eng. In 1204 Michael Fitz Baldwin,
in 1254 John Baldwyn, in 1342 Richard Baldwyne,
and in 1445 John Baldewyn are spoken of land owners.
In 1545 Sir John Baldwin died at Aylesbury, Bucks Co, Eng.
He was Chief Justice of the Court of Common Pleas, and a very wealthy man.
He left most of his property to two of his grandsons, Thomas
Packington and John Burlacy, perhaps the original of
the present name Lacy.
And now, according to the best information obtainable, we come to the history
of the ancestors of the Baldwins in Durham, NY, of whom we
have been writing. We are indebted to Mr. C.C. Baldwin, of
Cleveland, OH, for a large portion of the history already given as well as for
what remains. In 1552 there were two brothers, Richard and John
Baldwin, living in Dunbridge, Bucks Co., Eng. It is thought that they
were nephews of Sir John Baldwin, but that is
uncertain as yet. Richard died in 1552, and Ellen,
his wife, died in 1566. They had three sons and four daughters.
His son, Richard was a weaver, and died in Cholesbury, Bucks
Co., in 1633. His wife's name was Isabelle. He had three
sons, Timothy, Nathaniel, and Joseph and
four daughters, Mary, Hannah, Christina, and Sarah.
After their father's death the three sons emigrated to America and settled in
Milford, Conn., in the year 1639. They were members of a large colony,
many of whom were Baldwins, who bought lands of the Indians
in Milford that year. One of their number, Sylvester Baldwin,
died on ship-board June 21, 1838. His son Richard settled in
Milford and was the ancestor of Mr. C.C. Baldwin, above
referred to. Of Timothy and his descendants but little
is known at present. Nathaniel was a cooper; married first Abigail
Camp and second Mrs. Joanna Westcoat. He died
in 1650. His descendants are very numerous, and several of them reached
high positions in life. Moses was pastor of one church
on Long Island fifty years. Abraham was a chaplin in
the Revolution, member of the Georgia Legislature, member of Congress and U.S.
Senator from Georgia. John C. Baldwin, of Orange, NJ,
was a very benevolent man. It is said his benefactions amounted to $800,000.
His brother Henry P., was Governor of Michigan and U.S.
Senator (We had the pleasure of an introduction to him at his home in Detroit
in 1872). Henry, of Erie, PA, was M.C. and Judge of the
U.S. Supreme Court. Heber was a brigadier-general in
the late war. Joseph G. was a member of the Alabama
Legislature and Judge of the Supreme Court of California. Alexander
W. was appointed Judge of the Supreme Court of Nevada by Andrew
Johnson. Cyrus was a member of the Mississippi
Legislature, and died in the Confederate Army.
Joseph Baldwin, the youngest brother of Timothy and
Nathaniel, was the first American ancestor of the Baldwins of
this town. He was one of the first settlers of Milford, Conn., and was a
free planter, which means that he was a church member, and consequently was
permitted to vote and to take part in the general government of the colony. He
was married three times. His first wife was Hannah _____,
his second, Isabel Northam, and the third, Elizabeth
Warriner. He died in 1684. He had nine children: Joseph,
Benjamin, Hannah, Mary, Elizabeth, Martha, Jonathan, David and Sarah.
Jonathan, his son, was born Feb 16, 1649, married Hannah
Ward. His second wife was Thankful Strong,
daughter of Elder John Strong and Abigail (Ford)
Strong. (See Sketch No. 5) He had thirteen children: Jonathan,
John, Joseph, Hannah (died young), Daniel, Joshua, Abigail,
Hannah, Martha, Ebenezur, Noah, Phebe and Ezra.
One of his descendants, Rev. William C. Fowler, LLD, is
the author of "History of the Town of Durham, Conn", from whom we
have received much information.
Ezra Baldwin was the youngest son of Jonathan and
Thankful Baldwin and was born in Sept. 1706. His wife's name
was Ruth ____. About the year 1743 he removed to
Durham, Conn., where he died in 1782. He had ten children: Abiel,
Sr., of whom we have already written, Phebe, Ebenezer, Ezra,
Noah, Sr., of whom we have already written, Ruth (died
young), Amos, Elnathan, Reuben, and Ruth.
This brings us out of the wilderness to the place of beginning, and
it gives us ten generations, to wit: 1. Richard of Dunbridge,
Bucks Co, Eng. 2. Richard, his son. 3. Joseph,
his son, settled in Milford Conn. 4. Jonathan, his son.
5. Ezra, his son, settled in Durham, Conn. 6. Abiel
and Noah, his sons. 7. Their children who
settled in Durham, NY. 8. Their children. 9. Their children.
10. Their children. The descendants of Joseph Baldwin
(who came from England in 1639) now number 2,879, according to C.C.
Baldwin, of Cleveland, Ohio.
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