Saturday, October 26, 2013

Surname Saturday: DICKINSON

DICKINSON is a true patronym; a name derived from "son of Dickin." It can also be spelled "Dickenson." It was a common name in Northern England. Dickin or Dicken is a pet form (nickname) of Dick. The name Dick can have two origins; it can be a nickname of Richard, which means "rich-hearted"; or its own origins are a derivative of the word "thick," with similar meanings including "fat," "strong," and "stout." It can also mean someone who lives near a thicket.

Stories and History:

Ahnentafel #8960 - William DICKINSON (1570 - 1628) - born in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England, he married Sarah STACY (dates unknown) in 1594. He died in Ely, Cambridge, England. Although I have seen information taking William's line back another thirteen (!) generations, I do not know the accuracy of this. William's descendancy has been well-documented by genealogists, including those of the New England Historic and Genealogical Society, so I am beginning my family tree with him.

Ahnentafel #4480 - Nathaniel DICKINSON, I (c. 1600 - 1676) - born in Ely, Cambridge, England, he married Anna [--?--] (d. bef. 29 May 1676) in January 1629/30 in East Bergholat, Suffolk, England. She was a widow of [--?--] GULL, and had one son, William GULL. The Dickinsons immigrated to the Massachusetts Bay Colony, where the first three of their eleven children--nine sons and two daughters--were born in Watertown, Middlesex County. Later, they moved to Wethersfield, Hartford County in the Connecticut Colony, where their remaining children was born. Wethersfield is the oldest European settlement in Connecticut. Nathaniel was probably a part of a discontented Puritan group of families from Hartford and Wethersfield who petitioned to start a new colony after controversy over local church doctrine. These families removed to Hadley, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts Bay Colony. When Nathaniel died, he was buried in the Old Hadley Cemetery, but apparently has no marker. Tradition has it that since he died during the days of frequent raids by Native Americans, he was buried at night with no marker. This was common at that time, so that the Natives would not know how many colonists had been killed.

During Nathaniel's lifetime, the King Philip's War greatly affected not only his own generation, but his children's and grandchildren's as well. This was an armed conflict between Native American inhabitants of present-day New England, and English colonists and their Native American allies in 1675-8. King Philip was the English name of the main leader on the Native American side, Metacom(et). He was the second son of Cheif Massasoit, who had been a friend to the Pilgrims and Puritans. A fifty-year treaty that the Pilgrims and Massasoit had agreed upon was broken, as the Natives became alarmed at the expansion of the colonists upon their land. In less than a year, twelve of the region's towns were destroyed and many more damaged, the colony's economy was all but ruined, and much of its population was killed, including one-tenth of all men available for military service. About 30 years later, another conflict, Queen Anne's War, occurred between the French and their Native allies and the English colonists. This was the second of four major conflicts between the French and the British in North America. The most destructive event during this war was probably the sacking of Deerfield, Massachusetts on 29 February 1704. The third of the French and Indian Wars is referred to as King George's War (1744-8); this also affected my DICKINSON family.

Nathaniel and Anna's oldest child, John (1630 - 1676) was killed 19 May 1676 in the Battle of Turner's Falls during the King Philip's War. John's daughter, Hannah, married Samuel GILLETT, who was also killed the same day as his father-in-law. Hannah then married Stephen JENNINGS. On 19 September 1677, Hannah and two of her step-children were captured by the Natives and taken to Canada when Hatfield, Massachusetts was sacked. While in captivity, Hannah had a daughter, whom she named Captivity JENNINGS. Captivity grew up to marry Abijah BARTLETT. During Queen Anne's War, Abijah was killed by Natives on 13 October 1708 at Brookfield, Massachusetts. John DICKINSON's sons, Stephen and Benjamin, were killed by Natives on 22 July 1710, also at Brookfield. John's daughter, Sarah, married a widower, Martin KELLOGG. During the sacking of Deerfield, Martin, his son Martin, Jr. from his first marriage, and three of Martin and Sarah's children, Joseph, Joanna, and Rebecca, were captured and forced to mark 300 miles to Canada. Sarah hid her youngest son Jonathan and herself in the cellar. The Natives heard her son crying, found and killed him, and set fire to the house. Sarah escaped with her step-daughter, Anna KELLOGG. In 1706, Martin KELLOGG, Sr. returned to Deerfield. After his capture, Joseph DICKINSON spent two years with the Natives and eight years with the French. He spent the rest of his life as an interpreter between the Natives, French, and English. Joanna DICKINSON married the chief of the Cahnassaga tribe of Mohawks and remained with them for life. Rebecca DICKINSON chose to stay with the Natives until 1728; she devoted the rest of her life to work among and advocate for the Natives, chiefly at Stockbridge, Massachusetts.

Nathaniel and Anna's second child, Joseph (1632 - 1675) served in Captain Beer's Company in the King Philip's War and was killed on 5 September 1675 while trying to relieve the fort at Northfield, Massachusetts.

Nathaniel and Anna's fourth child, Hannah (1636 - 1712/3) married John CLARY. He was killed by Natives on 16 August 1688 at Northfield, as well as their daughter, Sarah. Earlier, Hannah and John's son, John CLARY, Jr., had been killed by Natives on 3 April 1671. Hannah and John's daughter, Mary CLARY, married Moses HUTCHINSON. Moses and their son Moses, Jr., were both killed by Natives on 13 May 1704 at Deerfield.

Nathaniel and Anna's sixth child, Obadiah (1641 - 1698) married Sarah BEARDSLEY. He was a sergeant during the King Philip's War. In the same 19 September 1677 raid on Hatfield in which Obadiah's niece, Hannah and her two step-children were captured, Obadiah's house was burned, and Sarah was wounded and left for dead. She did escape. Obadiah and one of their children (possibly a daughter, also named Sarah) were taken captive and forced to march to Canada. They were eventually ransomed and returned to Hatfield in the spring of 1678. There is no death record for daughter Sarah; it is believed she died in 1677 during captivity. In the 1680's, Obadiah and Sarah had another daughter, whom they also named Sarah; a common practice in those days.

Finally, Nathaniel and Anna's tenth child, Azariah (1648 - 1675) was killed by Natives on 25 Aug 1675 in Hatfield. His grandson, Obadiah FRARY, was killed by Natives near Fort Edward, Massachusetts.

Ahnentafel #2240 - Nathaniel DICKINSON, II (1643 - 1710) - born in Wethersfield, Hartford Co., Connecticut, he was the seventh child of Nathaniel DICKINSON, I and his wife, Anna [--?--]. He was married three times; his first wife was my ancestor, Hannah BEARDSLEY (1642 - 1679), whom he married in 1662 in Hatfield, and with whom he had six children. His second wife, Elizabeth HAWKS (d. c. 1684), whom he married in 1680, was the widow of Joseph GILLETT. His third wife, Elizabeth BURT, whom he married in 1684, was the widow of Samuel WRIGHT, Jr. Both Joseph GILLETT and Samuel WRIGHT were killed by Natives on different days in September of 1675. Nathaniel DICKINSON, II died in Hatfield

Nathaniel and Hannah's third child, John (1667 - 1761) married Hepzibah WELLS, who in 1693 was tomahawked by Natives and left for dead, but survived to a ripe old age.

Ahnentafel #1120 - Nathaniel DICKINSON, III (1663 - 1751) - born and died in Hatfield, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts Bay Colony. He married Hepzibah GIBBS (1664 - 1713), who was from Windsor, Hartford Co., Connecticut Colony. They had nine children.

On 15 July 1698, a small group, including Nathaniel and oldest sons Nathaniel IV and Samuel, were hoeing corn in the Hatfield meadow when they were fired upon by Natives. Nathaniel IV was killed and Samuel was taken captive but later rescued (more in next paragraph). Nathaniel III's horse was shot from under him, but he escaped. Later, Nathaniel III and Hepzibah had another son, whom they also named Nathaniel.

Nathaniel and Hepzibah's second son Samuel (1687 - 1761) was captured as mentioned above. He was recovered in the Pomeroy Pursuit. He was captured again 11 October 1723 at Northfield, Massachusetts and taken to Canada. He returned in June 1724. Samuel's wife, Hannah FIELD, and their daughter Hepzibah, were drowned 3 September 1740 while fording the Dearfield River on horseback.

Nathaniel and Hepzibah's sixth child and second son to bear the name Nathaniel (1698 - 1747) was scalped and killed by Natives at Northfield, Massachusetts on 15 April 1747, as part of King George's War. A monument commemorating the victims of the attack of 1747 was erected on Patchogue Hill in Northfield in 1872.

Nathaniel and Hepzibah's youngest child Catherine (b. 1706) married Caleb CHAPIN. He was killed at Lake George, New York by Natives on 8 September 1775, along with two of their sons, Joel and Hezekiah.

Ahnentafel #560 - Ebenezer DICKINSON (1690 - 1774) - born in Hatfield, he married his first cousin, Sarah DENSLOW (b. 1694) in 1716 in Hatfield. Ebenezer's and Sarah's mothers were the GIBBS sisters. They had nine children, probably all born in Hatfield. Later they removed to Litchfield, Litchfield Co., Connecticut Colony.

Ahnentafel #280 - Elisha DICKINSON, Sr. (c. 1730 - aft. 1790) - born in Hatfield, he married Elizabeth BARNES in 1769 in Cornwall, Litchfield Co., Connecticut Colony. They had five known children. Elisha served in the Revolutionary War from Cornwall.

Ahnentafel #140 - Philip DICKINSON (1770 - 1859) - born in Cornwall, he married Phoebe HUTCHINSON (1772 - 1858) in 1791. They had 14 children! Philip served in the U.S. Marines during the War of 1812. Later, he and his wife and most of their children settled in Trumbull Co., Ohio, which was part of the Connecticut Western Reserve, land claimed by Connecticut Colony, originally granted by King Charles II. Philip and Phoebe both died in Fowler, Trumbull County.

Ahnentafel #70 - Ezra DICKINSON (1800 - 1886) - a Civil War veteran; read his AnceStory here

Ahnentafel #35 - Lucy May DICKINSON (c. 1842 - 1873) - one of the youngest of 12 children, Lucy was born in Hicksville, Defiance Co., Ohio. She apparently migrated with her adult brothers to Western Michigan. There she married Benjamin Henry KIMBALL (1845 - 1924) in 1863 in Newaygo County. Her husband enlisted in the Union Army. After his return from war, they had four children. Lucy passed away shortly after the birth of her youngest child, Mary.

Ahnentafel #17 - Mary May KIMBALL (a.k.a. Lula WEAVER) (1873 - 1950) - when her mother died shortly after childbirth, Mary was raised by her maternal aunt. I have written a detailed AnceStory for her on my website here.

Ahnentafel #8 - William Bryan ROBBINS, I (1896 - 1972) - served during WWI in North Russia as a Polar Bear. Read more here. I've also written extensively about his experiences in North Russia on this blog.

Ahnentafel #4 - Robert Lewis ROBBINS (1920 - 2003) - a WWII veteran, and you can read all about him here. I remember how well he could ride a unicycle!

Ahnentafel #2 - my father (living)

Ahnentafel #1 - myself

More About the DICKINSON Family:

1. Online database (I update this at least once a month): DICKINSON ancestors and relatives (no info on living persons available)

2. Posts about DICKINSON ancestors and relatives on this blog

3. Some scanned 

4. Some scanned 
DICKINSON documents

5. My 
DICKINSON Virtual Cemetery on Find A Grave

My DICKINSON Immigration Trail:

Cambridgeshire, England > Suffolk, England > Massachusetts > Hartford Co., CT > Hampshire Co., MA > Litchfield Co., CT > Trumbull Co., OH > DeKalb Co., IN > Defiance Co., OH > Newaygo Co., MI > Muskegon Co., MI > Ottawa Co., MI > AK > Stevens Co., WA > Spokane Co., WA

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