Abigail Woolsey Taylor


Benjamin Woolsey and Abigail Taylor

Colonial Neighbors, by Georgiana M. Clapham
Long Island Forum, by Dr. Clarence Ashton Wood
Will of Rev. Benjamin Woolsey
Will of Dr. Henry Taylor, Chyrurgeon
Will of Major Daniel Whitehead, II
Will of Daniel Whitehead
Colonel Melancthon Taylor Woolsey

Reverend Benjamin Woolsey
(19 Nov 1687, Dosoris LI NY)
(15 Aug 1756 LI NY)
(son of Captain George Woolsey and Hannah Van Zandt)
+ Abigail Taylor 1714, LI NY
(1695, Jamaica LI NY)
(29 Mar 1771, NY)
(daughter of John Taylor and Mary Whitehead)

Colonel Melancthon Taylor Woolsey (8 Jun 1717 - 28 Sep 1758)
Sarah Woolsey (17 Apr 1719 - 3 Sep 1760)
Benjamin Woolsey (12 Feb 1720 - 9 Sep 1771)
Mary Woolsey (Bef. 1721 - Abt. 1756)
Abigail Woolsey (1723 -)
Hannah Woolsey (1724 - Aft. 1746)
Abigail Woolsey (31 Oct 1730 - 28 Oct 1811)
Theodosia Woolsey (1733 - 26 Sep 1747)
Theodosia Woolsey (Abt. 1735 - Abt. 1750)

Colonial Neighbors, by Georgiana M. Clapham, 1893

A most interesting phase of our common country history is that which traces the migrations of families, -- whence they came, whither they went, and wherefore. The annals of Long Island and Connecticut in colonial days are connected in a most neighborly fashion and are full of romantic incident. Many a lover used the Sound as his only pathway to the sweetheart living across the water, and by this route the Quaker maidens were thus transplanted to Puritan by the sturdy New-Englanders. Using the same pathway, the men who discovered the sweetness and thrifty ways of the maid who said her "thee" and "thous" with such grace saw how much more fertile and yielding the land there than the rocky hills which only his faith and unflagging, stubborn industry could have made productive; and seeing this, he often transferred his belongings as well as his affections. To-day his descendants often own the land where he settled when love made him captive. But the men of literary tastes and pursuits, college-bred men, who had fitted for a profession, these often migrated from Long Island to New England, and thence sometimes to Southern and Western cities.

A family identified with both sides of the Sound, and notable for its long line of honored and illustrious names, is the Woolsey family. At the extreme north of Glen Cove, Long Island, its water frontage facing the Connecticut shore, is a large tract of land still called "Dosoris," as named by the Rev. Benjamin Woolsey when he received it with his wife, Abigail Taylor, as her portion; Dosoris, from "Dos moris," meaning "wife's dower." This name, given as long ago as 1736, has never been changed nor merged into Glen Cove, of which village it now forms a part.

In 1707, Benjamin Woolsey graduated from Yale; and in 1846 his great-grandson, Theodore Dwight Woolsey, was made president of the college to which the Rev. Benjamin owed much of the scholarly elegance for which he was so noted. The value of a college course he impressed on all young men brought under his influence. The Southold records show the effect of this influence in raising the standard of the young men, and leading them to the best training.

It is interesting and curious that his descendants are everywhere except on Long Island, though there is nowhere in the country a more charming spot than Dosoris. The old manor house, rejuvenated by modern changes, may well be the rooftree for several generations yet. East and west of the house are buried, in small enclosures reserved for the purpose, members of the Rev. Benjamin's family and those of later Woolsey generations; but in Connecticut are by far the larger number, both of the living and the dead. Did the blue shores across the Sound exert some magnetic influence combining with the affection loyal students always feel for the college which has been the starting point of their intellectual life, and whose stimulus was Connecticut?

For many years this locality kept its ancient beauty of dignified seclusion, but such rapid strides have been made in the past six years in the way of modern "improvements," that its quaint old-time charm is fast disappearing. Yet there lingers still a rare harmony of past and present, place and people.

The old house stands to the east of a picturesque section, which has so rapidly changed its character that a few years hence the new people will have a new place, with no memory or likeness of the old. Dosoris Lane, formerly one long avenue, was like a bower, its trees arching overhead, making on hottest days a delightful cool twilight. It is quite another affair to-day. Smart little modern cottages meet you at its entrance; farther on, saloons, and, as one progresses, a primitive-looking meeting-house demurely waits by way of contrast within its shelter of trees. Passing a woody stretch, the lane opens to a break of meadow land on either side, with a distant background of trees whose proportions suggest a century's growth. Near the end of the lane are the modern changes: open lawns with wide water views; to the right, on a gently rising knoll, stands the old Cobes mansion, purchased a few years ago by Brooklyn's lamented philanthropist, Charles Pratt, a man of New England birth and training. Opposite its entrance are the velvety lawns of the places owned by his sons; and stretching west to the water is the magnificent park, the last gift of Mr. Pratt to Glen Cove.


The land ends at the cross roads, and faces the hill-top cemetery of the later Woolseys; to the left a winding road leads down a shady hill to the "Sisters," or East and West Islands, as they are commonly called, -- West Island famous for its elaborate landscape gardening and high cultivation, under the ownership of Charles A. Dana, another New England man. The upper road is straight for a mile, then gradually descends and winds untill the valley and ancient Lattingtown are reached; here brooks, ponds, and primeval trees make fit surroundings for the quaint, old-time houses.

Between Lattingtown and the Island road is a short lane, flanked on either side by an irregular hedge of trees that half hide the fields. It leads direct to the manor house whose back door faces the shores of Connecticut, plainly visible, while its front door opens to thelane and the undulating land, marked on every side by giant trees, every one speaking of age and long tradition. Like most of the houses of a hundred years ago, this bears the evidence of the usual mathematical work in architecture, -- of subtraction and addition; yet with all the changes there is more than one thing to tell the story of the old days when the Rev. Benjamin Woolsey was a marked feature of clerical and country life here.

That Rev. Benjamin Woolsey was a man before his times, there is evidence in all the old records; and his tombstone eulogy, despite the century's storms, is a clear testimony. He was spoken of at the time as a "dissenting Protestant Congregationalist." This was because he was willing to preach in any edifice devoted to the worship of God, and was friendly to all religions. It is further stated that when he held services at his Dosoris home, he not only gave fine sermons, but to those who came from a distance a bountiful dinner. Would it be easy to-day to find in a country parish a man of such recognized talents and unusual wealth, not only riding a distance of thirty miles each Sunday, during a pastorate of twenty years, but adding to this a gratuitous service at his home, providing for the physical as well as spiritual needs of the comers? While he was pastor for the Hempstead parish his son Melancthon Taylor Woolsey died, "engaged as a colonel in the service of his country, fighting against the French in Canada." The news must have been received late in the week, too late to enable the father to supply the pulpit in his absence; and the record states that "he left his family in their affliction and performed his usual ministerial duties." He had but two sons, Melancthon being the youngest.

Abigail Taylor Woolsey and Lady Cornbury, wife of Lord Cornbury, governor of New York and New Jersey, agreed to name their first daughts respectively after each other. Through this pretty bit of sentiment came first the name of Theodosia and Theodore in the Woolsey family.


While State and county records give a condensed history, after their sort, of the Rev. Benjamin Woolsey, there are few of the personal details one always likes to know; and there exists no silhouette or likeness of any sort, unless the sculptured image on his tombstone was itended for one. Of his wife Abigail there is a fine portrait in the possession of one of her great-great-grandsons, and it is worthy of study as showing a type of womanhood that our generation may honor. The repose quiet dignity, and gracious womanliness are in contrast to what is seen in many cases of the typical faces of today. Much was accomplished by the women of those struggling times, and without any of the labor-saving devices of our day; yet as a rule the faces tell no story of restlessness, hurry, worry, or the nervous eagerness too apparent in many of the women of this electrical age.

Lacking in details as is the history which we have of the Rev. Benjamin Woolsey, there is still much of interest; for, living as he did in an age of prejudice and bigotry, his life and teachings were such as to make him a conspicuous figure, as he would be even to-day, when the widest latitude is given to religious thought and action. It is related that in his first short and troubled parish ministration, after his graduation at Yale, he preached in an Episcopal church at Jamaica, Long Island. He was then called "an independent student and approbationer." At this time, in Jamaica, there was a feeling of antagonism between the Episcopal church, the Quakers, and the Presbyterians. The church were Woolsey preached was presided over by Thomas Payer, sent from England. Sects were many, and buildings devoted to religious worship were few, and there were frequent dissensions among religious bodies. The governor refused to take cognizance of them, when urged, and for this was denounced by some of the malcontents and "accused of wrong doing."

This freedom at Jamaica was the first evidence of the liberality which afterwards characterized the thoughts and actions of the Rev. Benjamin Woolsey. Not finding his first parish work to his liking, he settled in Southold, where his labors were among a people too poor to support a minister, yet where he found a wide and satisfactory field. He needed all the virtues he possessed, for previous to his pastorate there had been little to encourage a minister; yet in this small, ill-paid field he labored for sixteen years, and the good influence of his fine mind and untrammelled thought the local history duly acknowledged.

After establishing his home at Dosoris, he again became active in parish work. His parish was in the village of Hempstead, where for twenty years he went and came, most likely on horseback, if his wife accompanied him, as she doubtless did, it must have been in the quaint old pillion. Horses in those days must have had "staying" qualities; the work exacted of them demanded not only strength and endurance, but speed.


The tombstone eulogy of this old-time parson, and the obituary notice in "Hugh Gaines Mercury" acquaint us with a man who, in times of great narrowness, "was equable, above and beyond all narrow limitations of creed, recognizing worth whenever and wherever found." It must have been a privilege to listen to a man whose "intellectual powers were above the common level, and improved by a liberal education. His universal acquaintance with sacred literature rendered his public performances peculiarly edifying and instructive. His sentiments were just and noble, his reasoning clear and conclusive, his pulpit elequence manly and nervous and strong. The zeal and pathos that animated his discussions added peculiar grace and dignity to his address; while it engaged the attention, his hearers discovered the sincere piety and fervent devotion that warmed and governed his own heart. He loved good men of every profession, and owned and admired sincere piety under whatever form or denomination it appeared. Justice, charity, consideration, hospitality, and public spirit were virtues to which he paid most sincere regard. In discharge of the many duties which constitute the tender and affectionate husband, the indulgent, kind parent, the mild, gentle master, the obliging neighbor, the sincere, faithful friend, he had few equals and no superior."

Surely a good record! His will indicated the character of the times in which he lived, for he leaves his wife "five negroes to be sold and the money placed at interest." She is also to have the use of "ye wainscot room and ye bedroom adjoining."


In the rebuilding, these two rooms did not lose their character of ornamental nor the colonial white paint. When the chimney was repaired by the late owner, an old brick was found with the date "1734," and the initials "M.W." cut in bold lines, -- probably to commemorate the rebuilding by Melancthon Taylor Woolsey. This son must have had the house and a land portion given him, as there is recorded a deed of conveyance from Benjamin Woolsey and his wife Abigail, -- a portion having been reserved for the occupancy of his parents during their lifetime. In whatever changes have been made in the old manor house, the original timbers and old chimneys were retained, and many rooms, such as the "wainscot room," were restored intact. Its later owners have retained in its large, hospitable rooms the atmosphere of the past, the well-preserved old furniture doing its part. Over the fireplace of the "wainscot room" hangs a fine portrait of Washington, the work of Rembrandt Peale, and his first copy of his original painting, for which Washington gave sittings. The heavy, severe look, so common to most of the portraits of Washington, is absent from this; the coloring is soft and warm; and the portrait is devoid of all harshness in line or expression; there is a gentle dignity and a suggestion of that common human nature which makes one lovable as well as admirable. So highly is this painting prized by the family that no persuasive eloquence has ever won it for a "loan exhibition."

Opposite the entrance door of this room is the door where the impromptu execution of Gen. Nathaniel Coles by hanging in the doorway was so clumsily managed by the Connecticut raiders that he was rescued before it was too late; although it is recorded that "he being a man of unusual stature could easily have effected his own release."

Adjoining this east room is the dining-room with its quaint, handsome, cavernous fireplace. Down its great space, on summer nights, the moonbeams stream over the andirons out upon the floor.

From the windows here can be seen the long sand beaches, the near marshes with the winding estuaries of the Sound, giving shelter to water fowl, and making a very paradise for gunners. A long continuous view of the Sound is like a panorama, constantly changing, even in the coloring of its background, the Connecticut shore.


Curious neighbors are the old house and its front-door decorations. On either side of the door are the bases of two columns, once in the palace of the Caesars. They were brought from Egypt when the New York obelisk was transported under Capt. Garringe's command, -- Mr. Price having been on the expedition. One age thus vies with another here in claims for honor.

The house has never since its occupancy by the Rev. Benjamin losts its intellectual individuality. Interest in many literary and scientific movements still goes out from the neighborhood of the quiet grave of the man who appreciated the worth of mind over matter, and whose life exemplified such rare moral qualities. Volumes bear witness how worthy of him are his descendants.

Overlooking this historic place are old trees of superb proportions, towering over those of later growth with an imperial dignity and stateliness. Near the house is a large cottonwood, said to be the only one on Long Island. It lifts its great top from an immense length of trunk, commanding instant attention and admiration.

The ascending west path, leading to a lovely outlook over the water, is notticeable for two colossal bunches of box, the coat-of-arms of our past. To the east winds the farm road past the locust grove where the wonderfully preserved tombstone has for over a century borne its record of the man who once trod the soil now holding his ashes. What a record of the generations and the families whose lives have had their starting point on this old inheritance, "The Wife's Dower"! Here the Rev. Benjamin Woolsey left the impress of his vigorous nature on his immediate descendants and from here came that line which has become more famous in the succeeding years in the State whose line could be seen from the old manor house. In the later years the father of its present owners, Mr. George James Price, brought to it the atmosphere of literature and intellectual life, entertaining such men as Bishop Horatio Potter, George William Curtis, Emerson, Bryant, Horace Greeley, Henry J. Raymond, and others of equal worth; and to this historic house his son brings the vestiges of a past whose date is before Christ. It brings one under a strange spell to start from the old house between gateways of Egypt toward the ancient trees which shade the grounds.

Long Island Forum, by Dr. Clarence Ashton Wood

After a twenty years pastorate at Southold, Rev. Benjamin Woolsey retired and without the responsibilities of a parish, whiling living with his wife Abigail from 1736 to 1756 at Dosoris, her 300 acre patrimony now lost within the precincts of the city of Glen Cove, continued at times to hear marital vows, console his afflicted neighbors, bury their dead and frequently preach at Hempstead, or more often at some private residence, without a collection.


What is more and most unusual, the Woolseys often provided a free dinner in their hospitable home to those who came from a distance to har the dominie's discourse. There is no record of like generosity during their earlier domicile of sixteen years, 1720 to 1736, at the East End village, where Rev. Woolsey served as the third pastor of its then Congregational Church.

The generous parson and good wife were of course differently circumstanced during their earlier years at Southold than later at old Musketa Cove. They had arrived at Southold with three small children, Melancthon, Sarah and Benjamin. Later additions to the family were daughters Mary, Abigail and Elizabeth.

Within a few years after the relocation of the family at Musketa Cove in close proximity to the shore of Long Island Sound, the two eldest Woolsey children married into the Lloyd family of Lloyd Neck.

Melancthon Taylor Woolsey married in 1742 Rebecca, daughter of Henry and Rebecca (Nelson) Lloyd, owners of the Neck. The young couple named their first child Theodosia which name thereafter occurs frequently in all branches of the Woolsey family.

Sarah Woolsey, the preacher's eldest daughter, in 1741 married John Lloyd, brother of Rebecca. John became a gentleman farmer like his father on the Neck. During the Revolution he was employed as commissary for the State of Connecticut.

Henry Lloyd, the father of John, wrote the following lettter Oct. 10, 1741 to his neighbor Rev. Woolsey at Dosoris relative to the romance approaching full bloom between John and Sarah:

"Sir: As my son John has sometime made suit to your daughter, Miss Sarah, I conclude it is with your and Mrs. Woolsey's approbation; and, at his request, I hereby signify mine, hoping if they come together, it may be to their mutual happiness and with the good liking of all concerned. His circumstances being such as to enable him to live comfortably without any immediate dependence on me, I think little need be said on that head, only thus far - as he is my son and has much of my affection, I have, in the disposition of what estate I possess, considered him as such, without being over-concerned to make an older son to the disinheriting of the younger children. And I shall trust that Mrs. Woolsey and you will provide for Miss Sarah, as your daughter. I pray our best regards may be acceptable to yourself and lady, not forgetting your young lady. I am, sir, your very humble servant."


Sarah's younger brother Benjamin Woolsey married Ann Muirson, daughter of Dr. George Muirson, physician at Setauket. Mary Muirson Woolsey, daughter of that couple married March 3, 1777, Timothy Dwight, president of Yale College, 1795 to 1817.

Rev. Benjamin Woolsey was the son of Capt. George Woolsey, born on western Long Island in 1652, and grandson of George Woolsey, born at Yarmouth, England, in 1610, who was a grandson of an earlier Rev. Benjamin Woolsey, minister at Rotterdam, Holland.

Captain George Woolsey of Yarmouth had become an early resident of New Amsterdam and in 1647 had purchased a plantation and house at Flushing for his recent bride Rebecca Cornell. In 1664 he acquired land at Jamaica from the town. There in 1673 he was chosen town clerk. He died 1698.

Benjamin, the future clergyman, was born at Jamaica in 1687 and graduated from Yale in 1709 at the age of 22. He and Abigail, daughter of John Taylor of Oyster Bay, were married 1714. Six years later he was installed in the Southold Church.

Two years after the settlement of the Woolseys at Southold, Rev. Woolsey bought for 300 pounds the land at Beaver Ponds, Jamaica, which his father had inherited. He also bought the old school house for twelve shillings.

In 1735 Abigail, the pastor's wife, inherited several hundred acres at Musketa Cove and the next year with their six children removed to that estate, which Abigail's father had bought from his father-in-law, Daniel Whitehead of Oyster Bay, for 300 pounds. Whitehead had acquired it for a like sum from Lewis Morris of Barbadoes.


The Woolseys named their new abode Dosoris, a contraction from dox uxoris, meaning wife's dowry. Capt. George Woolsey, Benjamin's father, soon came to live with them. Rev. Benjamin Woolsey died in 1756 while Abigail lived until 1771, dying at Stamford, Connecticut. Three fifths of Dosoris was devised to their son Melancthon and the remainder to his brother Benjamin. In 1760 Nathaniel Coles bought Dosoris, paying Melancthon 4,000 pounds for his shares and Benjamin 3,600 pounds. Thereafter the property was bequeathed to John Butler Coles and General Nathaniel Coles.

Rev. Woolsey was interred in a private burying ground located on a knoll about 200 rods northeast of the Dosoris residence where sixteen years earlier his father had been buried. Dr. Epher Whitaker a century or more later found the burying ground a grove of locust trees while Dr. Benjamin Woodbridge Dwight of Clinton, N.Y., a descendant, described Dosoris as being in a most "forlorn and forbidden state."

old buildings

In 1850 the property was acquired by George James Price. The mansion, which had been enlarged eight years before, was then a double two-story structure with a wide hall running through the center from south to north, the west end having been the home of Rev. Benjamin and Abigail (Taylor) Woolsey. The building has since been demolished.

Yale Biographical Sketches, 1709, pp.93-97

Benjamin Woolsey, son of Captain George and Hannah Woolsey, of Jamaica, Long Island, was born in that town, November 19, 1687. His grandfather, George Woolsey, emigrated from Holland in 1623, and married in New York in 1647.

His parents were Presbyterians; and immediately after graduation he began the study of theology and appears to have continued it at home, though the Jamaica dissenters were then without a pastor.

By the summer of 1710 he had married Abigail Taylor, the only child of John and Mary (Whitehead) Taylor, of Oyster bay, Long Island. Her father was long since dead, and her mother was now the widow of the Rev. William Urquhart, the Episcopal missionary to Jamaica from 1704 to 1709.

In 1711 we hear of Mr. Woolsey as preaching for a single Sunday to the Presbyterians of Hopewell, New Jersey (where his elder brother resided), occupying for the purpose the Episcopal church and so causing a great scandal.

In 1714 he was invited to become a colleague-pastor of the church in Huntington, Long Island, but declined the invitation. In January, 1714-15, he describes himself as "of Dosoris," an estate nearly two miles north of the village of Glen Cove, where his wife's father had owned much land, and where he himself eventually settled on a farm containing upwards of a thousand acres. The name Dosoris has been variously interpreted, as an Indian name, or as a Latin designation given by Mr. Woolsey (dos oris or dos uxoris); it is said to have been used, however, before his time.

He was ordained and installed in Southhold, Long Island, about the middle of July, 1720, succeeding the Rev. Joshua Hobart (Harv. Coll. 1630), who died February 28, 1716-17. In 1736 he resigned his pastorate, that he might return to Dosoris and cultivate the estate left to his wife by her father. Here he lived for the rest of his days, preaching as opportunity offered, and during much of the time regularly in his own house.

He died at Dosoris, of a disease of the kidneys, August 15, 1756, in his 69th year.

His tombstone commemorates him as one

who, in the United Character of the Gentleman, the Christian, the Divine, shone with distinguished Lustre and adorn'd every Station of public and private Life with Dignity and Usefulness. Early devoted to the Work of the Gospel Ministry, endowed with the Gifts of Nature and Grace, he Employ'd His Superior talents in the Service of his Divine Master with Fidelity and Zeal.

A notice in the New York Mercury, soon after his death, has this just tribute of praise:-

Oysterbay, on Long-Island, August 20, 1756. Last Lord's Day Morning, departed this Life in the 69th year of his Age, and on Tuesday was decently interred, the Revd. Mr. Benjamin Woolsey, of this Place. He was a Gentleman whose intellectual Powers were much above the common Level. These improved by a liberal Education, and early sanctified by divine Grace, eminently furnished him for the Service of God and his Generation, in the sacred Office of the Gospel Ministry; to which he accordingly devoted himself, and was ordained a Pastor of the first church in Southhold.

Will of Rev. Benjamin Woolsey

Page 205.--In the name of God, Amen, April 20, 1755. I, BENJAMIN WOOLSEY, of Dosoris, in Oyster Bay, in Queens County, "Clerk," being somewhat disordered in body. I yield and surrender my immortal Soul to God, hoping for a favorable reception through the merits of a Glorious Redeemer." I leave to my two sons, Melancthon Taylor Woolsey and Benjamin Woolsey, all my wearing apparell and farming implements, and four large Folios, viz., "Poole's Annotations," "Berket upon the New Testament," and Willard's "Body of Divinity," to be divided or used in common, at their discretion. I leave to my wife Abigail the use of all the rest of my movable estate for life. My five negroes are to be sold, and the money used for my wife. My sister, Hannah Bayles, to have 5. And if my wife inclines to live where she now is, she shall have the use of the wainscot room and the bed room. After the death of my wife all my movable estate is to be divided into three lots. Out of the first 1/3, 100 are to be paid to my grand daughters, Elizabeth and Abigail Smith, and the rest to my daughter Muirson, the mother of my said grand children. The second 1/3 is left to my daughter, Sarah Lloyd. The remaining 1/3 to my daughter, Abigail Welles. I make my wife, and my son, Melancthon Taylor Woolsey, and my son in law, John Lloyd, executors.

Witnesses, Jacob Carpenter, John Weeks, Abigail Caverley. Proved, March 1, 1757.

Will of Dr. Henry Taylor, Chyrurgeon
Father of John Taylor; Grandfather of Abigail Taylor

[Dr. Henry Taylor was a physician of recognized merit while in Boston. The only way at that time of obtaining medical education was through apprenticeship to a physician. It is said that not a medical college existed in the Colonies prior to 1765. The profession at its best was crude; remedies were few, and bleeding was resorted to for almost every ill. Let us hope that Dr. Dyer was more skillful that a certain physician of his day in New Hampshire of whom it is said that he "began by doctoring cattle; later, with more or less suceess, he treated humans.]

New York City Wills, 1708-28
Page 94.--DR. HENRY TAYLOR. In the name of God, Amen. I, Henry Taylor, of Flushing, in Queens County, Chyrurgeon, being infirm in body. I leave to my wife Sarah the use of all my estate, houses and lands and monies due to me, I leave to my eldest son, Joseph Taylor, 20 shillings, and to my son Benjamin, 5, and all my wearing apparell. I leave to my grand daughter, Abigail, wife of Benjamin Woolsey, 20 shillings. I leave to my grand son, William Doughty, 3, to buy him a saddle and bridle. I leave to my grand sons, William Doughty, Jr., son of my daughter Phebe, deceased, and William Marsh, Jr., son of my daughter, Sarah Marsh, all my houses, lands and tenements, "situate in any part of the world, or the Province of New York." I leave one third of all my personal estate to my wife Sarah, and the rest to my daughter Sarah, wife of William Marsh, my grand son, William Doughty, my daughter Mary, wife of Francis Willett, of Rhode Island. I leave to my son Benjamin, all my right and interest to a certain tract of land in the township of Rye, in Westchester County, being part of what I lately purchased of William Lawrence. Provided that he shall within six months, deliver to Richard Smith, of Smithtown in Suffolk County, a release and quit claim for my parcel of land and meadow at Uncachoge, in Meridian neck, in Suffolk County, which at any time did belong unto me. And he shall also give to my grand sons, William Doughty and William Marsh, a quit claim for all right in the farm, whereon I now live in Flushing. I make my brother-in-law, John Palmer, of Westchester, and my friends, John Stephenson, of Westchester, and James Clement, Jr., of Flushing, executors.

Dated July 28, 1716. Witnesses, Thomas Willett, John Rodman, Jr., Robert Pines.

Codicil. Dated July 5, 1718. Confirms the foregoing will, and adds a few directions concerning personal property. Mentions "the Ferry boat," which he gives to his wife.

Witnesses, Charles Doughty, Mary Almy, Elizabeth Doughty, Joseph Ludlam. Proved before Peter Schuyler, President of Council, May 19, 1719.

Will of Major Daniel Whitehead, II
Father of Mary Whitehead; Grandfather of Abigail Taylor
Abstracts of Wills Vol I 1665-1707
Page 205.--DANIEL WHITEHEAD. In the name of God, Amen. I, Daniel Whitehead, of Jamaica, in Queens County. I leave to my son, Jonathan Whitehead, besides what I have formerly given him by deed, all my lands, tenements, and appurtenances in Jamaica, between the mill and Wellins path, lying westward of the mill, to John Okeys land, and southwest so far as my land runs. And also all my land on Cow neck in the Town of Hempstead. And all that my 1/4 part of the mill standing on Gildersleve Creek, in said neck. And also all my meadow on the Old Town neck, in Jamaica, except that meadow I purchased of Mr. Anthony Waters, deceased, with all the hereditaments, To him my son Jonathan and his heirs, and in default of issue, then to my son Thomas Whitehead and his heirs. I also give to my son Jonathan, my negro man Joe.

I leave to my loving wife, Abigail, my dwelling house I now live in, with the land adjoining, bounded on the south by the road to the ferry, on the west by Thomas Smith, north by Anthony Waters, And so much of my meadow as she shall have occasion for, during her life, and after her decease to my son Thomas and his heirs, and in default of such, then to my son Jonathan. I leave to my wife, my negro woman Mary, for life, and then to my daughter Deborah, wife of Thomas Hicks.

I leave also to my son Thomas, all that my lot of land lying in the town of Jamaica, by the land of Colonel Henry Filkin; Also all my land on Stewards neck and Quarelsome neck, in Jamaica; Also the lot of land Thomas Chambers now lives on, and my other three lots of land lying by the same, within the bounds of the Township of Flushing; Also all that my lot of land lying as well within as without the Long neck fence in Jamaica; As also all my meadow in Long neck, And all my land and meadow in Hewtree neck, in the bounds of Jamaica, with all the privileges, etc., And also my Indian boy named Cupid.

I leave to my grand son, Whitehead Hicks, the second son of my son in law, Thomas Hicks, the husband of my daughter Deborah, all that my land and meadow lying and being within the bounds and Township of Flushing, except the four 20 acre lots given to my son Thomas, To him and his heirs, and in default of such heirs, then to my daughter Deborah and her heirs.

I leave to my son in law, Anthony Waters, the present husband of my daughter Elizabeth, all that land now in the possession of my brother, Daniel Whitehead, lying on the east side of the Plain run, joining to Hempstead bounds, That is to say, after the death of my said brother; And also all that my meadow lying in Old Town neck in Jamaica, which I bought of his father, Mr. Anthony Waters, deceased; And also all that my lot of land on the Hills in Jamaica, which was formerly Joseph Thurstons, deceased, To him and his heirs.

I leave to my daughter Mary, widow of Thomas Burroughs, all my land at a place called Quaspack, in Orange County, up Hudson river, with all the privileges, during her life, and then to her daughter, Mary Burroughs, and to her heirs.

I leave to my son in law, Jacob Doughty, the husband of my daughter Amy, 50.

I leave to my wife Abigail, one third of all goods and chattels and the rest to my children above mentioned and to Mercy, wife of Thomas Betts.

I leave to my friend, John Hubbard, all that my 1/3 of meadow lying at Oldfields Island, which I bought with my brother, Thomas Oakley, and John Bayley, with all the rights thereto belonging, during the time of his continuance in the work of the ministry in this town of Jamaica, and if he continue in the ministry here till his death, then to his heirs, but if not then to my son Jonathan.

I give to the town of Jamaica the sum of 20, towards the maintenance of a Grammar School, for the education of youths within the said town; to be paid in three years after my decease, if there be such a school erected in said town. If not, then it is to be put at interest for three years longer, but if the school is not then established, then to go to my heirs.

I leave to my brother, Daniel Whitehead, 20.

To Jonathan, son of Jonathan Stevenson, of Norwalk, Connecticut, deceased, 20.

I give the 30 which is due to me from the estate of my son in law, Daniel Denton, unto his children, and to Gabriel Lassee, "begotten upon the body of Deborah Lassee, the present wife of Gabriel Lassee;" viz., to Daniel Denton, Abigail Denton and Deborah Denton, and to Abigail and Mary Stebbins daughters of Benjamin and Abigail Stebbins, my son and daughter in law. I leave to Catharine, daughter of my brother, Daniel Whitehead, two cows. All the rest of my lands, whether in Queens County or in Nissequogue [Smithtown] in Suffolk County, or elsewhere, are to be sold by my executors.

I appoint my wife and son Jonathan executors, and I leave to my loving friends, Thomas Stevenson and Lieutenant Thomas Smith, each 5, and make them overseers.

Dated November 13, 1703. Witnesses, Andrew Gibb, J. Lenoir, S. Clowes.

Codicil. I also give to my daughter Mary, widow of Thomas Burroughs, all that my certain lot of land in Jamaica town, next to the house and lot of Colonel Filkin, containing 2 acres, to her and her heirs and assigns. I also give to my daughter Amy, wife of Jacob Doughty, all that my certain house and lot in Jamaica now in tenure of Samuel Reisow. I leave to Mercy, wife of Thomas Betts, 50.

Dated December 9, 1703. Witnesses, John Freeman, S. Clowes, David Waters. Proved in Jamaica, October 30, 1704.

Will of Daniel Whitehead
Father of Major Daniel Whitehead, II
Grandfather of Mary Whitehead
Greatgandfather of Abigail Taylor

[Daniel was a proprietor in Hempstead, New York in 1647. In 1650 he was a Major and patentee in Smithstown. In 1652 he was imprisoned by the Dutch in New Amsterdam, but soon released. In 1653 he was an early patentee in Huntington. Between 1653 and 1663 he purchased lands in Oyster Bay, Smithtown, Huntington and Lloyd's Neck from the Indians. He was a patentee of Newtown, New York, where he was an overseer of the town, a surveyor and magistrate, and much engaged in public office. His will was dated 10 Nov 1668, but there is no record of it being probated.

After the death of Major Whitehead, his wife, Abigail Stevenson, married Daniel Denton, the son of Rev. Richard Denton, one of the first Presbyterian ministers in the country]

Abstracts of Wills Vol I 1665-1707
DANIEL WHITEHEAD, of Maspeth Kills, in Newtowne, left will, and made his wife (not named) executrix. She renounced the right, and Letters of Administration were granted to Stephanus Van Cortlandt, March 31, 1669.

Colonel Melancthon Taylor Woolsey

Colonel Melancthon Taylor Woolsey (1717-1758)
+ Rebecca Lloyd (1718-)

General Melancthon Lloyd Woolsey (1758-1819)
+ 1779 Alida Livingston (1768-1843) (dau of Dr. Henry Livingston, Sr. + Susannah Conklin)

Abstracts of Wills Vol V 1754-1760
Page 175.--In the name of God, Amen. I, MELANCTHON TAYLOR WOOLSEY, of Dosoris, in the town of Oyster Bay, in Queens County, taking into consideration the uncertainty of life and being in health. I leave all my lands in Dosoris and the house wherein I dwell, with all buildings and all movables and personal estate, to my wife, Rebecca Woolsey, and my brother, Benjamin Woolsey, and my brothers in law, John Lloyd, of Stamford, Connecticutt, and Joseph Lloyd, of Queens village, in Queens County, To them and their successors, In Trust as follows: They are to sell all the real estate, houses, and lands, and buildings, for the most they can; and the money and all my movables are to be divided among my wife and my two daughters, Theodosia and Rebecca, But if my wife shall have a son, it is to have one half. I appoint the said Trustees my executors.

Dated August 15, 1757. Witnesses, Abigail Coverley, Elizabeth Smith, Jacob Valentine.
Proved, November 7, 1758.

Papers of the Lloyd Family of the Manor of Queens Village, Lloyds Neck, Long Island, NY, 1654-1826 (The New York Historical Society, Collections 1927)

2 Decanters & 10 Glases
1 Burnt Cheina Bowl
Tea Tackling
1 Tea pot & Sugar pott &c
2 Glass Salts
1 Jugg Earthen
10 knives & forks
1 horse whip (cat gut)
1 Bareskin Muff
2 hoes @2/6
1 Negro Man Namd Ishmael
1 Negro Woman Woman Named Saul and Child Names Prissila
1 Negro Boy namd Jack
1 Negro Girl Named Patience
Flax in the Sheaf
1 Leach Tub
120 Bushell Wheat in Stack @5
120 Bushell of Oats @ 1/6
50 Bushell of Indian Corne
1 Canoe
1 Grind Stone


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