Other Pioneer Sanfords

As mentioned elsewhere on these pages, Thomas Sanford is the subject of a rather voluminous work by Carlton E. Sanford that was privately published in 1911. In the appendix of that work are a number of shorter topics. The following is found under the general heading of "Other Pioneer Sanfords." The first two, Robert and Andrew, are known to be brothers of Thomas and are thought to have arrived in Hartford in the company of their Uncle, Andrew Warner. The next, Zachary, is believed to be a close relative of these three brothers: Carlton speculates that he is either a cousin or younger brother at various places in the book. The next two are forJohn and Richard, neither of any known relation to Thomas. A number of others are included there, but I have yet not started entering them here.

It has been suggested that a much more complete discussion of the origins of these folks be covered here, replete with the arguments of the more adept genealogists of the past and present. I think that would be an excellent endeavour, but in order to get something on line rapidly (and having a copy of Carlton's book at hand) it is Carlton's words that you will find here at this point in time. Should anyone feel moved to make additions to this information, I will be happy to entertain your contributions in as unbiased a fashion as possible.


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The first of these, is that of Robert Sanford, the fourth son of Ezekiel Sanford and Rose Warner. There are at least 255 descendants covered (plus many spouses and in-laws), and they will eventually all be entered here. Carlton's opening narrative on Robert is as follows:

ROBERT SANFORD (Ezechiell, Thomas, Richard) baptized 1 Nov 1615, Stanstead Mountfitchet, Essex Co., England; died June, 1676, Hartford, Ct.; married 1643, Ann, died 1682, Hartford, Ct. He was a brother of Thomas Sanford, the pioneer to this country. (Savage states that this Ann was a daughter of Jeremy Adams, which statement was no doubt based on the statement in Adam's will, calling Zachary Sanford his grandson. Recent research by A. D. Hodges, Jr., of Boston, a most painstaking and able genealogist, convinces him that Ann was not a daughter of Mr. Adams. He finds the Zachary Sanford married Sarah Willett, granddaughter of Jeremy Adams, which would account for his calling him grandson in his will. Jeremy Adams married Silence, widow of Samuel Greenhill, about 1636. There is no record or evidence of a previous marriage. Mr. Adams mentions only Zachary in his will, when there were in 1682 at least 7 living children of Robert and Ann. (See Hartford Deeds, dist. 399. Zachary Sanford on May 30, 1682, petitions on the part of his wife for his share of the Greenhill property.)

Hinman in his work says that Robert was in Hartford as early as 1640. William S. Porter in his Conn. Hist. Notices 1842, p. 40, says that Robert is living on lots 61 and 62, Burr St. in 1655. Savage has him in Hartford in 1645 and the Town Records give the birth of his daughter Elizabeth as Feb. 19, 1645. Mr. Sanford's will was proven September 7, 1676. Mrs. Ann Sanford's will was proven Sept. 7, 1682, and mentions children Zachary, Robert, Ezekiel, Hannah and Abigail, and speaks of Robert, Hannah and Abigail for "their loving care" of her.


The next set of these entries is for Andrew Sanford, also a brother of Thomas, the fifth son of Ezekiel Sanford and Rose Warner. There are at least 440 descendants covered (plus many spouses and in-laws), and they will eventually all be entered here. Carlton's opening narrative on Andrew is as follows (less several obvious typos, which I have taken the liberty of correcting):

ANDREW SANFORD (Ezechiell, Thomas, Richard) baptized 1 Nov 1617, Stanstead Mountfitchet, Essex Co., England ... , died 1684, Milford, Ct.; married (1) Mary ______, died 1662; married (2) Sarah, daughter of William Gibbard, of New Haven, Ct. Her mother was a daughter of Edmund Tapp of Milford, and sister to the wife of Gov. Robert Treat.

The first record of him is in Hartford in 1651. His residence was on what is now lot 74 on Burr St. On May 21, 1657, he was made Freeman and was made Chimney Viewer in June, 1662. It is very likely that he was in Hartford and married as early as 1638 and the first two children born soon thereafter. The records state that Mary, his second child, was of marriageable age in 1667.

He and wife certainly got into serious trouble in Hartford. They were both indicted for witchcraft or for holding public meetings other than those prescribed by the elders or for dealings with "Sathan." The records show that he was "accused" June 6, 1662, and very soon after tried in court by a jury; that the verdict of the jury was, "some thought guilty, some strongly suspected," result, a disagreement.

It further appears that the wife Mary was indicted June 13, 1662, and soon tried, whether with her husband has not been learned. The verdict in her case, it is certain, was "Guilty," which of course meant execution. The actual record of the execution has not been found, but it is morally certain that she was executed. John M. Taylor in his "Witchcraft Delusion in Colonial Connecticut" states that she was executed. In the preparation of that work, as he states, in a letter to Mr. F. A. Sanford, No. 303 in this family [Andrew's], of Nov. 14, 1910, (to whom the author is indebted for assistance in this matter), he (Taylor) had access to the notes of the late Dr. Charles J. Hoadley who made an exhaustive research of some years since on the subject of witchcraft. His vol. of memoranda is now held by Mr. George E. Hoadley of New Haven. For the trial of Mrs. Sanford, see page 151. Andrew's trial will be found in the same volume. See also records of "Particular Court" vol. 2, pages 174-5, in the office of Secretary of State and State Librarian, Hartford, Ct.

The fact, too, that Mr. Sanford not long after these trials, had married again goes to show that his first wife had died.

A recent article (1910) in the New England Historical Magazine refers to the Sanfords of Hartford, Ct. as being "All Quakers." In and under Hartford Colonial law Quakers were classed as and with heretics. Quite a good many Quakers and Heretics were executed in New England in colonial times. So we need not look upon the case of Mary Sanford as a strange one. On going to Milford in 1667 he and his second wife accepted the situation, and joined the church, March 4, 1671. Mr. Sanford left a will dated Sept. 6, 1684. The inventory of his estate is dated Oct. 16, 1684. the will mentions the oldest son Andrew, son Ezekiel, eldest daughter Mary, daughter Hannah, and "the three younger ones." "If any of these die, their portions to go to the remaining daughters." (New Haven Pro. Rec. Book 1, p. 130.)


The next entry in this appendix of Other Pioneer Sanfords, is that of Zachary Sanford. While there is good circumstantial evidence that Zachary is related to the three Sanford brothers noted above, Carlton found no certain evidence of the relationship. That he came from the same area in Essex County, England and used the same names for his children clearly points to some connection, but what that might be remains (to the best of my knowledge) mere conjecture. Here is what Carlton has to say about him:

ZACHARY SANFORD, died December 23, 1668, in Saybrooke, Ct.; married Hannah, daughter of John Rockwell of Windsor, Ct., died January 15, 1665. I find no record of him in Hartford, but he is ever spoken of as having been first in that place. I believe he first settled in Hartford since his wife lived near that place and for the further reason that I believe that Andrew, Robert and Nathaniel Sanford who settled in Hartford were his brothers. He was made a Freeman in 1658, and elected a Representative in 1657-8.

At the time of his death he was in debt to Miles Clay of Braintree, England. After Clay's death John Durrant and John Lomy (Loomis) (on the part of his wife) took out letters of administration on Clay's estate in County Court at Hartford, Ct., so as to enable them to collect the claim against Zachary's estate. The records at Hartford and Saybrooke say nothing further. He went to Saybrooke in 1615. [1645?] This court record in Hartford (see page 65) [ibid.] was and is the only clue the author of this work has found as to whence in England the pioneer Thomas of Milford, Robert, Andrew, and Zachary of Hartford came, and by which the parentage was eventually found of Thomas, Robert and Andrew Sanford. (See article by C. A. Hoppin in front part of book.)


John - coming soon.


Richard - coming soon.


Nathaniel - coming soon.

More ... also coming soon.


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