Everts Everts Armsof Schuyler County

 

 

 

Family Data

Contents

 

John Evarts, the first settler in America of that name, came to Concord, Massachusetts where he was made a freeman in 1637. Some in the family say he was born in Wales in 1608. He later purchased land in Guilford, Connecticut (1651) and settled there. He was tillingman in 1667. The precise definition of the word "tillingman" is not present in any of the on-line dictionaries, nor in the big Websters. It may have to do with making sure land owners are farming "tilling" all the land agreed to in their purchase.

One of John's children, Elizabeth, had the misfortune to marry one Peter Abbott, who murdered her and was duly hung for the deed in 1667. Of John's four sons, John, Judah, Daniel, and James, all, save Judah, had children at least one of whom was named John. Its hard to tell why Judah did not follow suit, but there were enough Johns to go around. We are concerned with John Jr.

He married twice and fathered twelve children, ten by his second wife, Mary Bow. His first wife, Mary French, died in 1668 probably giving birth to her second child, another John. All the children's names were biblical, as was usual for these devout Puritans, except his last two daughters who were named Silence and Patience; valued virtues for girls at that time.

Nathaniel Evarts, was born in 1675, the second son of John Jr. He married Miss Margaret Hastings, daughter of Dr. Thomas and Anna (Hawkes) Hastings of Hatfield. This union indicates he was doing well in the world. His worth for taxation in 1716 was 66 pounds, 7 shillings, and sixpence. This was a tidy sum for the early eighteenth century. They lived in East Guilford. His first child was a daughter who was named after his wife. The first son was named, guess what, John.

This generation saw the first use of the spelling "Everts". From vital records and compiled genealogies we can get a glimpse of the interesting life of this John Everts. He was born in 1708 and at age 26 married seventeen year old Submit Stone. They resided in Salisbury Connecticut with his brothers Nathaniel and Sylvanus. John kept a public house and became one of the King's magistrates. Inns, or "public houses"  commonly served as places where local government took place. Inn keepers frequently became active in politics. John served thirteen sessions as representative from his town to the General Assembly. He obtained  charters from Governor Wentworth of New Hampshire for three new settlements; then surveyed, and laid out the towns of Salisbury, Middlebury, and New Haven in what is now Vermont. He was the chief moderator of the first proprietors meeting and was elected treasurer of the town government. Five others of the name were among the proprietors including his brother Nathaniel. This was in 1762. He and Submit had twelve children by then, the last of whom, Sarah, died at age one that same year of  1762, mixing sadness with success. After the birth of his seventh child, Daniel, John had returned to Salisbury, Connecticut where he died in 1786. Submit lived on until 1802. Theirs was a wealthy, respected, and influencial family. We will contunue with the equally interesting life of their son, Daniel Everts who came to Schuyler County in New York to take possession of land he gained by virtue of his war service. 

Before marrying and  raising children, Daniel fought in the Revolutionary War. He joined the New York State Militia as a private in February 1776 under Captain Samuel van Vechten in Colonel Wynkoop's regiment (before the Declaration) and served until 1777.  Then he returned to his home state and served as Corporal in the Connecticut line under Captains Clanghorn, Kirtland, and Humphries in Colonel Simon's Regiment until becoming Lieutenant in the guard of General Putnam. He was discharged May 1, 1780. While in service he said he knew General Wayne, General LaFayette, and many other officers of the regular army. (Revolutionary War Pension Application

Daniel prospered in the fertile section around the Finger Lakes. In all, he was married three times and had children by two wives. His first wife, Charity Van Dusen, died in 1769 in giving birth to a daughter, named for her mother; Charity. It was with his second wife, Polly Hurd, that he had eight children. They were:

  • Aranthes b. May 24, 1782
  • Charles G. b. Sept. 18, 1784
  • Olive b. July 29, 1786
  • Daniel b. August 8, 1788
  • Polly b. Feb. 14, 1791
  • John b. Feb. 24, 1793
  • Asenath b. Sept. 10, 1795
  • Abraham Hurd b. Jan. 17, 1799

An 1879 History of Schuyler County, New York carries this tale:

"Reuben Smith with his sons Jabez and Harry and Daniel Everts left Salisbury, Conn. for the western country and arrived at Peach Orchard...on June 1, 1793. (ed. this country around Seneca Lake was opened up to Revolutionary War veterans at low prices. Many veterans were unwilling or unable to make use of the land so it sold cheaply at $8 per acre. Within a year it was selling for $100 an acre and has continued to increase since.) They commenced a clearing, built a temporary hut, and did their own cooking. Venison, fish, and game of all kinds were abundant. They remained that season, putting in crops of corn and wheat. After harvest they returned to Connecticut. In the spring of 1794 Reuben Smith with his wife and five children, and Daniel Everts with his wife and eight (must be seven counting Charity) children and Grover Smith, commenced their journey to the settlement; Jabez, the oldest son of Reuben Smith and Grover Smith going on foot and driving cattle. The goods were packed on sleighs which were drawn by oxen....Everts settled with his family between Peach Orchard and North Hector." (ed. This spot is on the east side of Seneca Lake.) 

It is a continuing source of amazement to realize the hardships these people underwent just to get to their land. Old maps show what the route of their trip must have been. From Salisbury (in western Connecticut east of Kingston, N. Y.) across the Hudson River and along the Delaware turnpike to its junction with the Newburgh and Chenango trail until at the place where Oxford now is, the so-called Military turnpike was reached; on this through present Ithaca to the site of the old Indian town of Catherine, now Montour Falls. This place at the head of Seneca Lake must have seemed near to their final destination at Peach Orchard. Even today one can follow part of this old route between Ithaca and Montour Falls.

The land around the lakes is very fertile and the lakes create a microclimate making vinyards and orchards of peaches abundant. The lakes give easy access to markets via the Erie Canal and the Great Lakes. Farming flourished here in the nineteenth century.

Seneca Lake

Daniel's first child was Aranthus, born May 24, 1782. He was a nine year old boy during the trip from Connecticut. What an adventure for a boy that age! Aranthus was obviously an adventurous person as seen by his military career. His name appears in the Minutes of the New York State Militia as early as 1807 when he was 25. At that time he was appointed Captain in the Regiment of Colonel Hugh Graham. By 1811 he is 2nd Major of the Regiment, now a part of the 38th Brigade with Hugh Graham as Brigadier. In 1815 he is made 1st Major and later that year Lieutenant Colonel of the 145th Regiment of Infantry, 38th Brigade. Of course, this was during the time of the War of 1812. Promotion came fast in war time.  Probably as a Major of the regiment Aranthus marched from Hector to Buffalo and with his regiment took up the defense of Fort Seneca, a Canadian fort that was a base of supply for a larger fort. (the war was over by early 1815, before Atranthus' promotion to Colonel.) Forts of the time on the frontier were not the stone bastions we usually associate with the word. Rather, they were log stockades generally with towers at the corners, possibly mounting some small artillery. They were constructed for the protection of the frontier settlers from Indian attacks. They usually commanded river junctions or commonly used trails. The one pictured here is fairly typical.1812 fortAranthus made a name for himself in defense of this fort. He was under seige by the British, whose commander  sent in a message asking for surrender and saying "I propose to take my breakfast in your works". To this Aranthus was said to reply, "Attempt it sir, and you will take your supper in hell."

This episode has been often quoted in local histories and was told to me by a descendant of Aranthus. Apocraphal or not, it certainly seems to fit the man. Upon his retirement from the Militia Aranthus took up farming in Hector but remained active in community affairs. He was one of three "School and Gospel trustees" named in an 1818 deed giving title to a plot of land for a school. Part of the bounty land agreements was that local officials would see to it that land was allotted to schools and churches; I suppose an early tax free assurance.  The 1860 census lists Aranthus' real estate value at $11,500 and his personal estate at $12,500. In todays dollars this is a much larger figure. He was a very wealthy man.

Aranthes married Margaret Matthews in 1800 and settled into the life of a farmer. Together they raised six children, five boys and a girl:

  • Alanson G. b. November 7, 1802
  • Robert Emmett b. March 5, 1805
  • Lawrence Manly b. December 6, 1809
  • Clarissa Maria
  • John Russell b. 1815
  • Charles F. b. 1819

Lawrence and John went west around 1844. The 1850 census finds them both in Henry County, Iowa farming. Each had children born five years before in Iowa. Charles F. became a prosperous farmer and raised a family in Schuyler county. He served as Corporal in the 107th New York Infantry in the Civil War from July 1862 until August 1865. Robert started farming and had several children but died in 1852. Clarissa married Samuel Aller and was widowed by 1832 with a daughter. They also went west to Illinois and later Michigan.

Alanson got the farm and it is from him that our family descends. For the sake of brevity we will simply look at Alanson and his wife Anna Leavitt's fourth child of seven. He was named for his grandfather Aranthes and was born in 1829. From them our family descends.

Home