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Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs:
Palmer

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 1286-1289 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 first authentic record of Walter Palmer, emigrant ancestor of the Palmers of Gloversville, New York, is found in Charlestown, Middlesex county, Massachusetts. The traditions are that he was from Nottinghamshire, England, and that Abraham Palmer was his brother, as both he and Walter Palmer were made freemen May 14, 1634, and both were citizens of Charlestown. In 1638 he is recorded as owning "two acres of land in the East Field," with a dwelling house and "other aptinances" together with various other tracts of meadow, wood and tillable land. In 1645 he joined William Chesbrough and bought land in the Pequot country, in what is now Stonington, Connecticut. There was much trouble with titles, which were finally quieted, and he became the undisputed owner of about twelve hundred acres of land. Later church troubles developed, the new settlers not liking the long trip to New London. After several years the troubles between Massachusetts and Connecticut were settled, boundary lines established, and the name of the town, previously Southerton, was changed to Stonington. The will of Walter Palmer, dated May 19, 1658, was approved by the general court of Massachusetts, May 11, 1662. As Stonington (Southerton) was then in Suffolk county, Massachusetts, the will is recorded in Boston, where it may be seen. Walter Palmer married, in England, Ann ————; second (supposedly Roxbury, Massachusetts, where she was member of Rev. John Eliot's First Church), Rebecca Short. He joined the First Church of Charlestown in 1632, Grace, daughter of his first wife, joining at the same time. He died in Stonington, November 19, 1661. Children, by first wife:

  1. Grace, born in England; married Charlestown, Thomas Minor, who came to America in the fleet with Governor Winthrop, June 12, 1630.
  2. John, died unmarried.
  3. William, died unmarried.
  4. Jonas, married (first) Elizabeth Grissell; (second) Abigail Carpenter, widow of John Titus.
  5. Elizabeth, married (first) Thomas Sloan; (second) Thomas Chapman.

Children of second wife:

  1. Hannah, married (first) Thomas Hewitt, who established a West Indian trade and in 1662 set out with a stock for trade in one of the coasting vessels "and was never heard of more." In 1670 his widow petitioned the general court of Connecticut for liberty to remarry, which was granted. She married (second) Roger Sterry, and (third) John Fish, being his third wife.
  2. Elihu, died unmarried, aged twenty-nine years.
  3. Nehemiah, of whom further.
  4. Moses, married Dorothy, daughter of Captain John Gilbert.
  5. Captain Benjamin, married and brought home his wife, August 10, 1691; the fact of his marriage appears in Thomas Minor's diary, but who she was or where she came from does not appear.
  6. Gershom, married (first) Ann, daughter of Captain George and Ann (Borodel) Denison, of an old English family, from whom she inherited such stately and gracious manners that she was commonly called "Lady Ann." He married (second) Mrs. Elizabeth (Peck) Mason, widow of Major Samuel Mason, of Stonington.
  7. Rebecca, married (first) Elisha Chesebrough; (second) John Baldwin, of New London.

(II) Nehemiah, son of Walter and Rebecca (Short) Palmer, was born in Charlestown, Massachusetts, November 23, 1637. He was made a freeman at Hartford, Connecticut, May 10, 1666. He thereafter took a prominent part in the civil affairs of Stonington; was elected deputy to the general court of Connecticut, May 15, 1668, and re-elected for fifteen sessions. He bought and sold much land and is of frequent mention in the public records. He married, in Stonington, November 20, 1662, Hannah, daughter of Thomas and Ann (Lord) Stanton. She was born in 1644, and died in Stonington, October 17, 1717. Nehemiah died February 17, 1717, aged eighty-one years, and is buried in the old burial ground on the east side of Wequetequoc Cove, the inscription being still decipherable. Children:

  1. Lieutenant Joseph, married Frances Prentice.
  2. Elihu, born March 12, 1666, died young.
  3. Jonathan, married Mercy Manwaring.
  4. Daniel, of whom further.
  5. Elihu, baptized December 14, 1674.
  6. Jonathan, December 14, 1674.
  7. Nehemiah (2), married Jerusha, daughter of Captain Joshua Saxton.
  8. Hannah, married her cousin, Captain Ichabod Palmer.

(III) Justice Daniel, son of Nehemiah and Hannah (Stanton) Palmer, was born June 12, 1672, died February 28, 1762. In 1717 his father gave him "for his dutiful care of me, one half of all the land at home where I now dwell." In October, 1724, he was appointed a commissioner to determine the dispute with the people of Rhode Island. He annually received the appointment of justice of the peace for fifteen years. In November, 1719, he was a member of the council, and was repeatedly elected a deputy to the Connecticut assembly. He married (first) March 25, 1701, Margaret, daughter of Nehemiah Smith. She died in Stonington, June 4, 1726. He married (second) January 12, 1732, Mary, widow of William Denison, and daughter of John and Abigail (Chesebrough) Avery. She was born November 14, 1680, and was fifty-two years old at the time of her marriage to Daniel Palmer, whom she survived ten years, dying in 1762. Children, all by first wife:

  1. Nehemiah, married Submit, daughter of Moses and Abigail (Allen) Palmer.
  2. Daniel, removed to Voluntown, Connecticut; married Mary, daughter of Deacon Joseph and Mary (Palmer) Palmer.
  3. Samuel, died aged twenty years.
  4. Dr. Nathan, a leading physician of Stonington; married Phoebe, daughter of Ebenezer and Phoebe (Denison) Billings.
  5. Rufus, married Phoebe Babcock.
  6. Huldah, died aged twelve years.
  7. Lydia, died aged nine years.
  8. James, of whom further.
  9. Rebecca, married Captain Daniel Fish, and removed to Voluntown.

(IV) James, son of justice Daniel and Margaret (Smith) Palmer, was born in Stonington, Connecticut, July 18, 1720, died June 20, 1786. His homestead was about one mile east of the old burying ground. He married, in Stonington, June 14, 1740, Hannah, born June 11, 1732, died October 4, 1814, daughter of William and Lucy (Denison) Chesebrough. Children:

  1. Eunice, married William, son of Samuel and Susannah (Champlain) Stanton.
  2. Hannah, married (being his second wife) Captain Andrew Palmer, son of Dr. Nathan and Phoebe (Billings) Palmer.
  3. Bridget, born November 12, 1755.
  4. Samuel, of whom further.
  5. Margaret, married George, son of Captain Andrew and Lucy (Palmer) Palmer.
  6. William, married Mary, daughter of Captain and Lucy (Palmer) Palmer.
  7. Desire, married Captain Roswell Saltonstall Palmer, son of Captain Andrew and Lucy (Palmer) Palmer.
  8. Lemuel, married Abigail, daughter of John and Abigail (Baker) Davis.

(V) Samuel, eldest son of James and Hannah (Chesebrough) Palmer, was born June 18, 1758. He married, in Stonington, Connecticut, November 9, 1780, Hannah Eells, born September 14, 1760, daughter of Rev. Nathaniel and Mrs. Mary (Darrell) Eells, of Stonington. Children:

  1. Lucy, born October 25, 1783.
  2. Henry, of whom further.
  3. Samuel, August 30, 1785.
  4. James, April 1, 1789.
  5. Joseph, August 24, 1790.
  6. Benjamin, twin of Joseph.
  7. Frank, March 22, 1792.
  8. Betsey, May 8, 1794.
  9. James H., February 3, 1797.
  10. Maria, September 21, 1799.
  11. Emila, April 13, 1803.

(VI) Henry, eldest son of Samuel and Hannah (Eells) Palmer, was born in Stonington, Connecticut, October 9, 1784, died aged sixty-six years six months. He married, June 3, 1804, Mary Kennedy, born April 9, 1786, who survived him twelve years. After his marriage he settled in the town of Johnstown, now Fulton county, New York, on a tract of wild land that he cleared and improved. Children:

  1. Silas, born April 11, 1805, died in Wisconsin, aged sixty-five years; married April 16, 1825, Ruth Read.
  2. Roxana, born June 4, 1807.
  3. Thornton, born July 29, 1808; a carpenter and carriage builder; died in Fulton county, aged seventy-five years; married, October 15, 1834, Ovanda Hubbs; children:
    1. Levi H., married, (first) Emma Huckins; (second) Elizabeth Levally; (third) Minnie Cole;
    2. Albert, married Jane Britt, and had a son, Albert B., born March 9, 1878; by his second wife had a son Carrol.
  4. Robert, of whom further.
  5. Hugh, born December 13, 1811, died November 18, 1880; a tanner and manufacturer of Gloversville, New York; married (first) October 21, 1833, Catherine Chase; (second) Susan Jansen. Children, all by first wife:
    1. Clarissa, married Willard McGregor, and had Margaret;
    2. Martha, died February 4, 1854.
    3. Prudence, married (first) Thomas McCombs; (second) Samuel Senior; by first husband had
      1. Edward, born April, 1871, died in 1908.
  6. Paulina, born January 14, 1813.
  7. Esther, born April 29, 1814, died May 8, 1893; married, November 10, 1833, Adam Fritcher; children:
    1. Alfred P., married Margaret Smith;
    2. James, married Sarah Payne, and had
      1. William, born May 1, 1858, who married, December 10, 1882, Nellie Sprague, and had
        1. Alfred, born August 18, 1886, and
        2. William Sprague, born July 1, 1896.
  8. Alford, born December 27, 1815.
  9. Priscilla, born March 24, 1817.
  10. Rusilla, born April 17, 1821; married William Avery, and removed to Herkimer county; children: Henry and Fred.
  11. Fatima, born June 18, 1822; married, January 9, 1840, Robert Milligan; children: Dorothy and Thomas.
  12. Perlina, born May 27, 1823; married, September 30, 1842, Joseph Back, who died February 16, 1898; children:
    1. Silas, married (first) Cynthia Avery, died October 29, 1877; married (second) Alice Bishop;
    2. Mary Catherine, died July 17, 1844;
    3. Carrie R., died June 6, 1882, married James M. Thompson and had Mark and Carrie;
    4. Eli, died September 25, 1863;
    5. Joseph;
    6. Fannie, married (first) M. Wheeler; (second) Edward Paramore.
  13. Cordelia, born April 2, 1824; married, November 14, 1842, John R. Wood, and has Lottie and Mary.
  14. Henry A., born June 21, 1828; married, November 9, 1851, Angelina Smith, and removed to Wisconsin, where he died.

(VII) Robert, fourth child of Henry and Mary (Kennedy) Palmer, was born in the town of Johnstown, Fulton county, New York, June 21, 1810, and died December 12, 1896. He was educated in the public schools and reared on the farm. He taught school for four winter terms. He learned the tanner's trade, but all his after life followed the occupation of a farmer, excepting the years he spent as proprietor of the Palmer House, a hotel he built in Gloversville and managed until 1891, when he turned it over to his son, Charles. This hotel was always run as a strictly temperance house, no license being asked for and no intoxicating liquors ever having been sold there. He was an active member of the Baptist church and in politics was a Whig and a Republican. He was successful in all his business enterprises and secured for his old age a comfortable competency. He married, October 22, 1835, Betsey Marvel Gage, who was born August 20, 1817, died October 16, 1900; children:

  1. George H., born December 9, 1836, died March 23, 1895; married, July 5, 1857, Jane Erckenbrack; children:
    1. Charles H., married (first) Ella Abrams, (second) Alice Kelly; by first wife has Georgia;
    2. Anna, married Eugene Peck, and has Howard E. and Jane L.
  2. Charles V., of whom further.
  3. Mary Jane, born March 9, 1844; married, 1861, Joseph Thompson; children:
    1. Annie, married Daniel Snell, and had Florence, Minnie, Charles, Augustus, Raymond, Clyde and Bessie;
    2. James, married Cora Bradt;
    3. Frank, married Mary Smith.
  4. Caroline Rucilla, born October 4, 1847, died, April 24, 1848.
  5. James M., born August 1, 1849, died August 22, 1853.
  6. Lydia Ann, born January 25, 1852, died July 6, 1862.
  7. Ervin Milford, born October 19, 1857, died June 29, 1875.

(VIII) Charles V., son of Robert and Betsey Marvel (Gage) Palmer, was born in the town of Johnstown, Fulton county, New York, September 20, 1839. He was educated in the common schools and succeeded his father in the management of the Palmer House at Gloversville, New York, which he successfully conducted. He was sheriff of Fulton county, 1893-95. He married, October 14, 1862, Emmeline Godfrey, born April 5, 1842, daughter of Robert and Emmeline (Rhodes) Godfrey. Children:

  1. Robert J., of whom further.
  2. Archibald, born March 16, 1869; married, November 6, 1895, Annie Y. Fulton, and had
    1. Godfrey R., born May 31, 1897.

(IX) Dr. Robert J. Palmer, eldest son of Charles and Emmeline (Godfrey) Palmer, was born in the town of Johnstown, Fulton county, New York, November 16, 1863. He was educated in the public schools, finishing his preparatory studies in Gloversville at the high school. Choosing the profession of medicine, he entered the Albany Medical College, where he was graduated M. D., March 16, 1887. He at once began practice in Gloversville, where he yet remains, ranking among the best of his profession in the city. Since 1896 he has been coroner of Fulton county, and since 1906 city physician of Gloversville. He is a member of the city and county medical societies; Gloversville Lodge, No. 428, Free and Accepted Masons; and in politics is a Republican.

He married, November 9, 1887, Margaret Rebecca Morris, born September 24, 1868, daughter of Charles H. C. and Louisa (Swart) Morris, and granddaughter of Isaac Morris, of Amsterdam, New York, who married Jane Vrooman, a lineal descendant of Hendrick Meese Vrooman, who was born in Holland and after two removals in New York state, settled at Schenectady in 1677. At the Schenectady massacre of February 9, 1690, Hendrick and his son Bartholomew were slain, he leaving two sons, Adam and Jan, to inherit his estate. Adam, son of Hendrick Meese Vrooman, was born in Holland, in 1649, came to America with his father, and in 1670 bound himself for two years to learn the millwright's trade. In 1683 he built a mill on the Sand Kill east of Schenectady. In 1690, when Schenectady was destroyed, he defended his house bravely and escaped with his life, although his first wife, Engeltje, with her infant child, were killed, and two sons, Wouter and Barent, carried away prisoners. He had three wives and nine sons and four daughters. He was a large land owner and among his possessions was six hundred acres in Schoharie. Peter, son of Adam Vrooman, settled on the tract of land in Schoharie called "Vrooman's Land." He married Gridje Van Alstyne, and had twelve children, and died in 1771. Abraham (Abram), son of Peter Vrooman, was born in Schenectady, New York, January 24, 1759, and died in Schenectady, January 29, 1813. Abraham Vrooman served in Revolution as a private of Company Four of the Wemple Regiment of Schenectady. He was living on a farm in Schoharie in August, 1780, the date of the "Schoharie massacre," when a band of seventy-three Indians and four Tories under Captain Brant entered Vrooman's Land on an errand of murder and pillage. Abraham had a narrow escape from death. He was in the valley with a powerful team and hay rake. He picked up several of the settlers, outstripped the Indians and reached the fort in safety. He married Matilda Vischer, and had several sons and daughters, one of whom, Jane, married Isaac Morris, a shoe manufacturer of Amsterdam. They had ten children, two of whom died in infancy; the others were Lewis, Abram V., Margaret, Tunis, Charles H. C., John, James Stewart and Isaac (2). Charles H. C., son of Isaac and Jane (Vrooman) Morris, born November 24, 1836, married Louisa Swart, and had four children:

  1. Laura Jane;
  2. Robert Tunis, married Laura Van Buren;
  3. Margaret R., who married Dr. Robert J. Palmer; and
  4. Isaac.

(X) Robert Morris, only child of Dr. Robert and Margaret Rebecca (Morris) Palmer, was born in Gloversville, New York, August 25, 1888. He is at present a student at Union College, Schenectady, New York, taking a course for A. B. degree.

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