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The elusive Benjamin Nichols Dyer

18 February 2011 2 comments

I am trying to look into the Dyer family who lived in what was Stephentown, but I don’t believe any of them lived within the current Stephentown limits.  I’ve done pretty much all the research I can do remotely, and I’m not sure what sort of records exist for early Stephentown/Petersburg/Rensselaer County.  Ideally, I would like to see some land or court records, wills, births, any documents, really.  I’m looking for proof of the relationship between who I believe are son, father, and grandfather.

I’m looking for information regarding George Dyer (if he ever resided in Stephentown) and any sons who lived in Stephentown (Benjamin Nichols Dyer and any others).  I’m looking for the name of Benjamin Nichols Dyer’ wife (and any other information about her), and for proof that Benjamin Nichols Dyer was the father of Benjamin Wood Dyer and Burton Hammond Dyer.  There was a lot of moving around, so I want to outline all of it so hopefully it helps with where to start.

George Dyer married Anne Nichols on 25 Dec 1760 in West Greenwich, RI.  They had at least 7 sons and 3 daughters in RI.  One of the sons was named Benjamin Nichols Dyer, who was born 3 Sept 1762, according to FHL film 925978 (record has “Benjamin Nichols Dyre” as name, so middle name is confirmed).  Another son was George (jr), born 4 Mar 1769.  After 1790, after the death of his wife, George Dyer Sr left RI and settled in Rutland County, VT.  George was still in West Greenwich with 2 females at 1790 US Census.

In regards to North Petersburg, this might be him: (http://history.rays-place.com/ny/ren-petersburgh-ny.htm)

David Russell of Salem built the old grist mill which originally was conducted by Nathan Hakes, and which was abandoned about 1825. Among the first tavern-keepers of the village were men named Lewis and Dyer.

There was a Benj N Dyer was living in Stephentown in 1790, near Nathan Hakes.
There was a Benjn N Dyer was living in Stephentown in 1800 census
There was a Benjamin Dyer living in Windham, Windham, CT in 1810 census
There was a Benjn Dyer living in Onondaga, NY in 1810 census

In 1798, a Benjamin N Dyer was a member of the military from Rensselaer County:

A Benjamin Dyer is buried in the Old Congregational Cemetery in Pittsford, VT.  His gravestone inscription says he died July 11, 1819, in his 57th year, which would match up to the RI birth record.
There are also Benjamin Dyers from the time period buried in Wiswell Cemetery, West Townshend, Windham, VT (no data on inscription) and a Capt Benjamin Dyer who died 19 Jan 1856 a 77y, buried in the Shaftsbury Center cemetery, near Baptist church, Shaftsbury, Bennington, VT.

Benjamin Nichols Dyer is rumored to have married his wife in Hancock, Berkshire, MA before their first child was born in 1790.

A George Dyer (probably George Jr) married a Wait Gardner in Hancock, Berkshire, MA on 7 Apr 1796.  Waity Dyer died in 1843 in Rutland, VT.  In 1810 census, both George Sr & Jr lived in Rutland.  In 1817, George Sr died in Clarendon, Rutland, VT.  On 20 Jul 1843, George Jr died in Rutland, VT.  George Jr had a son Alanson, b 1800.  Alanson is listed in an 1861 Vermont Supreme Court case as the father of a Benjamin N Dyer.

Benjamin Nichols Dyer’s sons I believe include Benjamin Wood Dyer and Burton Hammond Dyer.  I believe Benjamin Wood to be born in Petersburg on 1 Sep 1797, but I’m not sure if Burton Hammond Dyer was born in New York or Vermont.  Benjamin Wood and Burton Hammond Dyer moved to Madison County, NY.

I looked in the publication “Records of Stephentown Baptist Church, 1795-1816” but it did not have any Dyers.  On April 9, 1820, the Wampsville Presbyterian Church society was formed, and Burton and Benjamin Dyer were supporters at that time.

Benjamin Wood Dyer married Mahala Barnard maybe in 1833.  She was the daughter of Pardon & Mahala/Polly/Dolly (Cadwell) Barnard, who resided in Madison County, NY from 1807-1840.  Benjamin Wood died 17 Feb 1888 and buried in Lenox, Madison, NY.  Benjamin Wood has a son, Benjamin Nicholas Dyer (born about 1836).  Benjamin Nicholas Dyer has a son Benjamin N Dyer (b about 1877)

Burton Hammond Dyer married Rebecca Walker Johnson of Sangerfield, NY on 15 May 1835.  He lived in Oneida at that time.  He died 23 Apr 1892 in Oneida.

Ezekiel Johnson of Hollis, NH

14 February 2011 1 comment

In the book White Family Quarterly, Volume 3, page 18, there is an entry for

Rebecca Hartwell, b in Fitzwilliam NH, July 13, 1783; m pub June 27 1803, with Ezekiel Johnson of Hollis, NH.  They settled in Lexington, Mass, but removed soon to Sangerfield, NY.
Children
Luther H Johnson
William S Johnson
Franklin Johnson
Josiah Johnson
Rebecca W Johnson
Sullivan Johnson, d 1819

My next task was to find out more about “Ezekiel Johnson of Hollis, NH.”

In the time before their marriage, there were two Johnsons in Hollis, New Hampshire census records: Samuel Johnson and Edward Johnson.

In 1790, a Samuel Johnson was recorded with 1 free white male under 16, 1 free white male over 16, and 5 free white females. There was no Edward.  I assume that the head of the house, Samuel Johnson, was the male over 16, and that his wife was one for the 5 females.

In 1800, a Samuel Johnson was recorded with 1 male 16-25, 1 male 45 & older, 1 female 10-15, 1 female 16-25, and 1 female 45 & older.  I assume that the head of the household was the male 45 & older and that his wife was the female 45 & older.  That leaves what seems to be one son 16 to 25, one daughter 10 to 15, and another daughter, aged 16 to 25.  Between this census and the 1790 census, it would make the son be born between 1775 and 1784.

In 1800, an Edward Johnson was recorded as having 1 male 26-44, 2 females under 10, and 1 female 26-44.  I assume that the head of the house is the one male age 26-44 and his wife is the one female 26-44, and the two young females are their daughters.

According to Revolutionary War records, there was a Samuel and an Edward in Hollis in 1775 and 1776.

According to CAPTAIN EDWARD JOHNSON, OF WOBURN, MASS., AND SOME OF HIS DESCENDANTS by Hon. Edward Francis Johnson (The New England historical and genealogical register, Volume 59, on pages 275-6), an Edward Johnson went to Hollis, NH with his nephew Samuel around 1770. This Edward died in 1779, and had two sons: Miles and Edward.  Accordingly, this would make the Edward Johnson in the census be the son of the Edward Johnson who participated in the Revolutionary War in 1775 and 1776.

Since these are the only two Johnsons in Hollis, and Edward Sr did not have a son named Ezekiel, I’m assuming that Ezekiel Johnson was Samuel’s son.

The next step is to look into the identity of Samuel Johnson of Hollis, NH and to learn about his family.

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