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Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs:
Wright

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 1081-1084 of Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs, edited by Cuyler Reynolds (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1911). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 929.1 R45. Some of the formatting of the original, especially in lists of descendants, may have been altered slightly for ease of reading.]

The earliest American progenitor of the Wrights of Hudson Falls (Sandy Hill), New York, was Deacon John Wright, of Woburn, Massachusetts, 1641. He had been of Charlestown, and there was one of the projectors, thirty-two in number, for settlement of the new church and town. He was one of the first settlers of Woburn, and subscribed for the "town orders" (at Charlestown) December 18, 1640. He was selectman of Woburn 1645-1647, 1649-1658, 1660-1664, 1670, 1680-1681, and commissioner of the tax rate 1646-1671. He was deacon of Woburn church from November 10, 1664, to his death, June 21, 1688. He was deputy 1648. He married Priscilla ————, who died April 10, 1687. Children:

  1. John (see forward).
  2. Joseph, died March 31, 1724; married Elizabeth Hassell.
  3. Ruth, married Jonathan Knight. She survived him and died April 13, 1714.
  4. Deborah, born January 21, 1649.
  5. Sarah, born February 16, 1653; married Joshua Sawyer. They had a son Joshua and several daughters.

(II) John, eldest son of John and Priscilla Wright, was born in Woburn, Massachusetts, where he died April 30, 1714, aged eighty-three years (gravestone Woburn first burying ground). John, with several other members of the Woburn church, was presented by the grand jury of Middlesex county for refusing communion with that church in 1671. He is styled "senior." He was selectman of Woburn in 1690, and tytheing man of the town for "Boggy Meadow End" in 1692. His will, dated May 24, 1701, proved November 11, 1714, names wife Abigail and eight children. Abigail, his widow, died April 6, 1726, aged eighty-four years (gravestone record). Children: John Jr., Joseph, Ebenezer (all living in Chelmsford at date of will); Josiah (of Woburn), see forward; Ruth Butterfield, Priscilla, Deborah, and Lydia, "youngest daughter." He appointed his wife Abigail and son Josiah executors of his will.

(III) Deacon Josiah, son of John and Abigail Wright, died January 22, 1746-47, aged seventy-three years. He was a deacon of the Woburn church from 1736 until his death. He married, September 17, 1700, Ruth Carter, died January 31, 1774, aged ninety-two years "or more." Children:

  1. Josiah, born December 2, 1710; died in the military service at Lake George, July 15, 1758. "Fixed up our fort and Uncle Josiah Wright was exceedingly bad, and he died about four o'clock afternoon, and was buried about dusk and I followed him to his grave as the nighest relation he had there, and saw the last respects paid and thanked them all for their service and returned to our camps." (Lieutenant Samuel Thompson's diary).
  2. Samuel, of Westford.
  3. Ruth, married Samuel Thompson.
  4. John, see forward.
  5. Mary, married Ebenezer Wyman.
  6. Abijah, born May 17, 1713.
  7. Joshua, of Hillis, New Hampshire.
  8. Abigail, married Stephen Parker.
  9. Phebe, died in childhood.
  10. Benjamin, married Mary Wright.

(IV) Deacon John, son of Josiah and Ruth (Carter) Wright, died April 29, 1763. He was a member of the Woburn church before April 6, 1756, and was chosen deacon August 9, 1758. He married Mary Locke, January 4, 1738. She died May 26, 1795, aged eighty-two years, daughter of James and Sarah (Cutter) Locke, and granddaughter of Deacon William Locke, born at Stepney Parish, London, England, December 13, 1628; married Mary Clarke in Woburn, Massachusetts. Deacon Locke died at Woburn, June 16, 1720, aged ninety-one years six months. Sarah (Cutter) Locke was daughter of Richard Cutter, of Cambridge, Massachusetts, who emigrated to America with his wife Elizabeth. Children of Deacon John and Mary (Locke) Wright:

  1. John, married Phebe Tidd; nine children.
  2. Mary, married Jeduthan Richardson; eleven children.
  3. Judah, married Tabitha Hartwell, of Bedford, Massachusetts; seven children.
  4. James (see forward).
  5. Hannah, born March 9, 1741.
  6. Ruth, married Leonard Richardson; (second) Joseph Bruce.
  7. Josiah, twin of Ruth, married (first) Lydia Buckman; (second) Mary White, who bore him five children.
  8. Jesse, born August 11, 1753; married Lydia Parker. He was in the military service under Captain Wyman. They had six children.

Several of the children and grandchildren of Deacon Wright removed to Packersfield, now Nelson, New Hampshire. Others of the family settled at Bedford, Massachusetts.

(V) Deacon James, son of John and Mary (Locke) Wright, was born December 15, 1745, at Woburn, Massachusetts, died in Bedford, Massachusetts, December 24, 1818. He was the first of his family to settle in Bedford. He was a tanner and currier, and a man of prominence. He was deacon of the church and leader of the church singing. "The church met at Deacon James Wright's house and held a conference with each other respecting the unchristian like behavior of the pastor, Mr. Joseph Penniman, on the last Lord's day," and voted "to have Jeremiah Fitch and James Wright sett in the fore seat in the front gallery as they are appointed to begin the psalm of tune." In 1815 the town viol was placed in the hands of "Deacon James Wright" for the purpose of assisting in taking the lead in sacred music. He was a soldier of the revolution. He married, October 6, 1768, Ruth Tidd, born February 7, 1747, died January 6, 1830, daughter of Samuel and Phebe (Sawyer) Tidd, and sister of John Wright's wife. Samuel Tidd was a great-great-grandson of John and Margaret Tidd. Their son John married Rebecca ————. Their son John, born February 26, 1654-55, died August 3, 1743, married Elizabeth Fifield. Their son Ebenezer, born August 31, 1673, married Martha ————. Their son Samuel, born September 24, 1718, married Phebe Sawyer, and they were the parents of Ruth Tidd Wright. Children of Deacon James and Ruth (Tidd) Wright:

  1. Ruth, born August 9, 1769, died September, 1776.
  2. Sally, born December 12, 1771, died August, 1776.
  3. James, born November 2, 1774.
  4. John Tidd, see forward.
  5. Betsey, born August 6, 1789, married ———— Lane, died June 30, 1818; they had no children.

(VI) John Tidd, son of James and Ruth (Tidd) Wright, was born in Bedford, Massachusetts. December 16, 1772. He removed from Bedford to Westfield, later to Lynn, Massachusetts, still later to Springfield, Vermont, where he died. He married Hannah Proctor, a sister of the British General Proctor, according to family tradition. Children:

  1. James, born October 26, 1778, died October 20, 1800.
  2. James (2), see forward.
  3. Ruth, born October 14, 1803, married Eldridge Stearns.
  4. Eliza Ann, born July 1, 1805, died May 20, 1876; married ———— Matthews.
  5. John Newton, see forward.
  6. Nancy, born November 23, 1808, died April 17, 1837.
  7. Sophrona Adelina, born June 22, 1812, died September 24, 1845; married Rev. H. H. Weld.
  8. Betsey, born December 26, 1814, died June 25, 1842.
  9. Glorianna, born August 24, 1817, died March, 1885.
  10. Harriet Louisa, born September 16, 1819.

(VII) Major James, son of John Tidd and Hannah (Proctor) Wright, was born in Lynn, Massachusetts, August 12, 1802, died at Sandy Hill, September 17, 1858. He lived in Massachusetts until he reached his fourteenth year. He then removed to Vermont, attended Middlebury College, later was connected in some capacity with Governor Slade of that state, who taught him the printer's trade. After becoming master of the printer's art as then practiced, he went to Saratoga county, New York, where he was for a time working at his trade in Ballston Spa, but soon settled at Sandy Hill, Washington county, which was his home for many years. In 1821 he purchased the necessary outfit, fitted up a printing establishment, and began the issue of a weekly newspaper, The Washington County (or Sandy Hill) Herald, which he edited successfully for twenty years. On retiring he sold it to Elisha D. Baker. The Herald was a Democratic paper, and was a powerful and popular organ of the party. During his twenty years as editor Mr. Wright did much personal work for the Democracy, and was rewarded with the Sandy Hill post office, of which he was postmaster for fourteen years. He also established a drug business in the village, which he conducted until 1845. He represented Sandy Hill in the state assembly, and was prominent in the National Guard, holding the rank of major. He was an active member of the Presbyterian church, and a highly respected citizen. He married (first) Emerine Caldwell, who died in 1828. He married (second), in 1830, Charity Tillman Baker, born in Sandy Hill in 1804, died June 20, 1894, daughter of Judge John and Elizabeth (Trowbridge) Tillman Baker, granddaughter of Hon. Albert Baker, born in Westchester county, New York; was of New York City until 1768, when he settled on the site of the present village of Sandy Hill and built a house (the first in Sandy Hill) near the Falls of the Hudson. which now bears the name of Baker's Falls. He was the second settler there, James Bradshaw being the first. He took up a tract of six hundred acres of land and at the falls built the earliest grist and saw mill in the town of Kingsbury. He was there eight years prior to the revolution, and during the years of the war suffered great dangers and loss of property. During the Burgoyne invasion of 1777 he fled with his family to more thickly settled and less dangerous regions. During a second invasion of Tories and Indians in 1780 his house, mills and most of his property were burned. A bible, now in possession of his fourth great-grandchild, Charles Clary, was the only thing saved from the house. His family fled to Stillwater, and remained there until peace was declared. He, however, returned after this second invasion and rebuilt his home and mills. He was a member of the constitutional convention held at Kingston in 1777 that framed the first state constitution for the state of New York. He was one of the representatives from Washington county. He died in 1805. His wife, Rachel Sutton Baker, died in 1815. Their son Caleb, the first white child born in the town of Kingsbury, was justice of the peace and a prominent politician. Another son was Hon. John Baker, born in Stillwater, September 29, 1779, was coroner and associate judge of Washington county, member of the state legislature in 1811 and 1821-23. He was engaged in milling and contracting. He built the locks and dams on the Champlain canal that were the finest of their kind at that date. He died in 1824, aged forty-four years. He married Elizabeth Trowbridge Tillman, and they were the parents of Charity T., William T. and John K. Baker. He died March 23, 1824. Major James and Charity T. (Baker) Wright had three sons and four daughters:

  1. James Caldwell, married (first) Maria Miller, who died and left a daughter Kate E., who married Charles Von Wallemenich; married (second) Rachel, sister of his first wife, who left a son Woodward, who married Freda Breniagam.
  2. William E., died 1852.
  3. Silas, see forward.
  4. Margaret, died November 18, 1858; she was the wife of George F. Dean and left two sons, George and William E. Dean.
  5. Frances M., married Henry J. Windsor; children: Harry J. and Frances M.; Mrs. Windsor died June 16, 1858.
  6. Elizabeth B., married Benjamin F. Denton; killed in the civil war at the assault on Port Hudson.
  7. Abbe A., now (1910) a resident of Sandy Hill, New York.

(VIII) Silas, son of Major James and Charity Tillman (Baker) Wright, was born in Sandy Hill, Washington county, New York, September 11, 1842, died May 5, 1910. He was educated in the schools of New York City and Connecticut. He became associated with the paper manufacturing business as salesman principally. He was first with Abraham Van Winkle, in New York City, then with Molleson Brothers. He next formed a partnership with Mr. Simpson under the firm name of Simpson & Wright, but this firm did not long continue in business. Mr. Wright then associated himself with Melvin Hard's Sons. In 1890 he became one of the selling force of F. Breadt & Company, 241 Water street, New York City, who were the agents of Joseph Porritt & Sons, of England, representing that house throughout the United States and Canada. He was one of the best known salesman in the paper trade, his business taking him all over the United States, and bringing him into contact with paper users everywhere. He was a member of the Masonic fraternity for forty-seven years and stood high in the order. He became a Master Mason at the age of twenty-one years in Sandy Hill Lodge, No. 372, Free and Accepted Masons; was a Royal Arch Mason of Sandy Hill Chapter, No. 189; a Knight Templar of Calvary Commandery, Hudson Falls, and a "Shriner" of Oriental Temple, Troy, New York, belonging also to the Masonic Association of the latter city. He was largely instrumental in organizing Calvary Commandery and obtaining a dispensation from the Grand Commandery of the state for its establishment in Hudson Falls. He was of a most friendly, genial disposition and was very popular in his community. On Ascension Day, May 3, 1910, while attending divine service at the Baptist church with Calvary Commandery, Knights Templar, in full Knights Templar regalia, he was suddenly stricken with apoplexy, and quickly passed away. He married (first) Nellie, daughter of Edward F. Fennell; (second) Helen B., daughter of Loraness and Belvedere Clark. Children:

  1. Silas (2);
  2. Charity T.;
  3. Loraness Clark, married Minnie McElligott and has a daughter, Helen Mary;
  4. James William.

(VII) John Newton, son of John Tidd and Hannah (Proctor) Wright, was born in Massachusetts, February 7, 1807, died November 4, 1873. He was educated in the public schools, and was a printer by trade. He was a boy of sixteen years when the family settled at Sandy Hill. He learned his trade with his brother, Major James Wright, and was connected with the Herald for many years. During the administration of President Pierce he was appointed to a position in the New York custom house, serving for many years. He was again appointed under the administration of President Johnson. He was a Democrat in politics, and an attendant of the Presbyterian church. He married, August 12, 1830, Myra Ann, daughter of Doty and Sophia (Bird) Collamer. Children:

  1. Louisa, born May 30, 1831, married John L. Toole, child, Myra, born December 26, 1862, died 1900;
  2. Sophia, May 16, 1833, died August 6, 1910;
  3. Isabella, May 22, 1835, married Charles W. Baldwin;
  4. John Danvers, December 13, 1837, married Elizabeth Hamilton, children, Nellie and John;
  5. Henry Harvey, see forward.

(VIII) Henry Harvey, son of John Newton and Myra Ann (Collamer) Wright, was born April 12, 1843, at Sandy Hill, New York. He was educated in the public schools, and learned the painter's trade, becoming a most expert grainer and decorator. He developed an unusual talent for portrait painting, and has executed a number of portraits that are worthy of an artist of greater pretentions than Mr. Wright. He has exhibited at fairs and associations of his section and has received several prizes for his excellent work. He is a member of Sandy Hill Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons. He married Mollie M. Munson, a native of Stockholm, Sweden; she came to America when twelve years of age. Mr. and Mrs. Wright have one child, Anna M., born December 12, 1889, a graduate of Hudson Falls high school, and now, 1910, attending the State Normal School at Oneonta, New York.

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