Happy Birthday Samuel Wolcott Sr.

April 16

Brown-Sanford-Parsons-Wolcott Line
By Don Taylor

Today, I remember my 9th great-grandfather, Samuel Wolcott. No mistake, he is the third Samual Wolcott whose birthday is this week. His son, Samuel Wolcott, celebrated his birthday last Monday and his grandson’s birthday was last Wednesday. This Samuel Wolcott was born on 16 April 1656 in Windsor, Hartford, Connecticut Colony, British Colonial America. He was the first ancestor in my Wolcott line born in America. Samuel married Judith Appleton on 6 March 1678; they had nine children.

He died on 14 June 1695 in Wethersfield, Hartford, Connecticut Colony, and was buried at the Village Cemetery in Wethersfield.

For more information on Samuel Wolcott (Senior) see:

If you have an image of Samuel Wolcott (Senior), I would love to hear from you.

If Samuel Wolcott (Senior), is your ancestor, and would like to learn what I find out about him. Please let me know how we are related. Subscribe to this blog, like me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, or comment at the bottom of this post.

Happy Birthday Samuel Wolcott, III

April 13

Brown-Sanford-Parsons-Wolcott Line
By Don Taylor

Image of marker of Samuel Wolcott
Marker of Samuel Wolcott (1713-1800) at Find-a-Grave.

Today, I remember my 7th great-grandfather, Samuel Wolcott. He is the son of Samuel Wolcott whose birthday was last Monday.. He was born on 13 April 1713 in Wethersfield, Hartford, Connecticut Colony. Samuel married Mary Wyatt on 11 March 1735 in Connecticut Colony. He died on 11 April 1800 in Hartford County, Connecticut and was buried at Wethersfield Village Cemetery.

For more information on Samuel see:

There are no known photos, paintings, or drawings of Samuel Wolcott (1713-1800). If you have an image of Samuel or know more about his life, I would love to hear from you.

If Samuel Wolcott (1713-1800) is your ancestor, I would love to share information with you. Please let me know how we are related. Also, like me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, or comment at the bottom of this post.

Happy Birthday Samuel Wolcott, Jr.

Brown-Sanford-Parsons-Wolcott Line

April 11

Drawing of a bench type marker of Capt. Samuel Wolcott
Wolcott Genealogy – The Family of Henry Wolcott by Chandler Wolcott – c. 1912 – Page 66 – Markers for Capt Samuel Wolcott

Today, I remember my 8th great-grandfather Samuel Wolcott. He was born on 11 April 1676 in Wethersfield Hartford County, Connecticut. Samuel married Abaigail Collins on 27 December 1705. Captain Wolcott commanded a company during the French and Indian Wars. He died on 15 September 1734 at the age of 58, in Wethersfield, Connecticut Colony, and is buried at Wethersfield Village Cemetery.

For more information on Samuel Wolcott see:

There are no known photos, paintings, or drawings of Capt Samuel Wolcott, Jr. If you have an image of Samuel or know more about his life, I would love to hear from you.

If Samuel Wolcott (1676-1734) is your ancestor, I would love to share information with you. Please let me know how we are related. Also, like me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, or comment at the bottom of this post.

Wolcott – Surname Saturday

By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.Ancestry indicates that the surname “Wolcott” is a Habitational name for someone from Wollcot in Somerset, England. Possibly so named from the Middle English wolle meaning “spring” and cot, meaning “cottage” or “shelter.” Forebears indicate it is derived from a person from Wollscott in Warwickshire.


Approximately 7,775 people worldwide bear the surname Wolcott, and 7,650 of them live in the United States. With the most living in New York, California, and Florida.

Wolcott Ancestors

I have eight known Wolcott ancestors:

    • 5th Great-grandmother: Mary Wolcott(1767-1857) b. Mass., d. New York
    • 6th Great-grandfather: Samuel Wolcott (1736-1802) – b. & d. Connecticut.[i]
    • 7th Great-grandfather: Samuel Wolcott (1713-1800)
    • 8th Great-grandfather: Samuel Wolcott (1679-1734)
    • 9th Great-grandfather: Samuel Wolcott (1656-1695)
    • 10th Great-grandfather: Henry Wolcott (____-1680)
    • 11th Great-grandfather: Henry Wolcott (____-1655)
    • 12th Great-grandfather: John Wolcott (____-____)


Mary Wolcott was born in Massachusetts and died in New York.

Her father, Samuel Wolcott, was born and died in Connecticut.

I do not have birth locations for the earlier ancestors; however, Henry Wolcott was one of the founders of Windsor, Connecticut, and was identified as one of the original persons identified in the 1662 Charter of Connecticut (the basis of Connecticut being the “Constitution State”).

Wolcott Descendants

I have 867 known descendants of John Wolcott; 121 Brown, 94 Wolcott, 31 Parsons, 17 Berg, 16 Hanson, 16 Larson, and 15 Briggs descendants. Six hundred eighty of those descendants are known descendants of Mary Wolcott. I have previously written about 5 of them.

Famous Wolcott’s

Wikipedia indicates fifteen famous Wolcott’s, including three governors, two senators, a representative, and a signer of the Declaration of Independence, Oliver Wolcott. There are also eight places named “Wolcott” in the US.


Ancestry Surname Page: http://www.ancestry.com/learn/facts.
Forebears Surnames Page: http://forebear       s.io/surnames.
Ancestry – Don Taylor’s Roberts-Brown tree on Ancestry.
Wikipedia – Wolcott.


[i] Ancestors before Mary Wolcott (1767-1857) have been potentially identified but not confirmed through my personal research.

Mary Parsons – The 1855 New York Census opened a Brick Wall

Census Sunday
By Don Taylor


Following families in the early census records is always tricky, and following widows can be particularly difficult. I had been unable to find her in several early census records after her husband died. So, I thought I’d try approaching finding her using a different approach.

What I think I know

Mary (Wolcott) Parsons migrated to Windham, Greene County, New York in the spring 0f 1802.[i] Her husband John Parsons, Jr., died on 7 April 1813.[ii] Mary died in 1857[iii]. I was not successful in finding Mary Parsons in the 1820 Census, so I thought I’d try finding her in the last census before her death.

Census Reviews

1855 New York Census

Samuel Parsons in the 1855 New York State Census, for Windham, Greene county

Luckily, New York had an 1855 State Census. The 88-year-old Mary is recorded living with her son Samuel[iv]. Samuel was reported as being 65 years old, born in Mass. He was a farmer who had lived in Windham for 50 years. He voted and owned land.

In the same house, but making a different household, is Mary’s youngest daughter, Prudence, and her husband, Benjamin Miller. The census shows “Brudence” as 44-years-old and a resident of Windham for 44 years. Her husband Benjamin was 54-years-old and a resident of Windham for the previous 20 years. Benjamin was a voter but did not own land.

1850 Census

Samuel and “Polly” Parsons in the 1850 Census.

Having been unsuccessful in finding Mary Parsons in the 1850 Census previously, I decided to look for her son Samuel Parsons. There he was, Samuel “Persons.”[v] Living with him was 83-year-old “Polly Persons.” Polly is an alternate/nickname for Mary[vi].

The 1850 Census doesn’t show relationships, but the household appears to include 66-year-old Samuel and 83-year-old Polly Persons.

1840 Census

1840 Census showing Albert and Mary Parsons households

The 1840 Census finds Mary Parsons enumerated as a female 60 thru 69. In her household is a male 50 to 59. Samuel does not appear to have been enumerated elsewhere, so I am confident the male in the household is Samuel. Interestingly, the next person enumerated on the page appears to me to be Benjamin Miller. That household seems to have Benjamin (age 30-39), a female (age 20 to 29), and a boy (age 10 to 14). If the 1855 Census were correct, Benjamin would be 39 in 1840, and Prudence would be 29, fitting this entry.

1830 Census

Mary does not appear to be listed in the 1830 Census with Samuel. Samuel is listed as being 40 to 49 (as expected). With him is a female 10 to 14. This is an unknown female in his household. However, there is an Albert Persons (age 20 to 30) living in Windham. His household includes a female 50 to 59, which fits the age for Mary. Could this be a here-to-fore unknown child of Mary?  More research is needed to determine who Albert is. Because they are next to each other in the 1840 Census, I’m confident Mary is the 50 to 59 year old female in his household.


The 1820 Census reports three Parson’s households in Windham, Greene County, New York.

    • Albert Parson’s profile is:     1 1 0 1 0 0 | 0 1 1 0 0
    • Samuel Parson’s profile is: 0 0 0 0 1 0 | 0 2 0 0 0
    • Orrin Parson’s profile is:      1 0 0 1 0 0 | 0 0 1 0 0

None of the families enumerated appear to have a woman over 29, let alone the 53-year-old Mary. That Albert’s household did not include an older woman in 1820 but did in 1830, shows that the older woman moved into his household sometime between 1820 and 1830.

Mary’s Age Shifts

    • In 1830, 63-year-old Mary appears to have been enumerated as 50-59, four years younger.
    • In 1840, 73-year-old Mary was enumerated as 60-69, four years younger.
    • In 1850, 83-year-old Mary was enumerated as 83.
    • In 1855, 88-year-old Mary was enumerated as 88.

I find the four-year shift in Mary’s age is relatively common for women during their middle years to report be a few years younger than they are. Likewise, older people often seem to add a few years and say they are slightly older.


Based on the 1830 Census, it appears that Mary may have had a son, Albert, that I didn’t know of before. If so, Albert would have been born between 1800 and 1810 and could have been born in either Massachusetts or New York. The Parsons moved to New York about 1802; I haven’t found a birth record for Albert. Further research is needed to confirm this potential relationship.

Finding Mary/Polly in the 1840, 1850, and 1855 censuses vastly improves my understanding of her life. Again, I feel I’ve located Mary in the 1830 Census with Albert, but that feeling is tentative at best.


Research Land records for the Parsons owning land in Greene County, New York, during the early 1800s, particularly Samuel Parsons.

Did Mary have a son, Albert, who was probably born between 1802 and 1810 in New York?


[i] History of Washtenaw County, Michigan (Chicago, Chas. C. Chapman & Co., 1881), Google, Pg 1405. Chas. C. Chapman & Co. (2012). History of Washtenaw County, Michigan: Together with sketches of its cities, villages and townships, educational, religious, civil, military, and political history ; portraits of prominent persons, and biographies of representative citizens : history of Michigan : embracing accounts of the pre-historic races, aborigines, French, English and American conquests, and a general review of its civil, political and military history. Salem, MA: Higginson Book Company.

[ii] Ibid.

[iii] Find a Grave, database and images (www.findagrave.com/memorial/118318771/mary-parsons : accessed 23 April 2021), memorial page for Mary “Polly” Wolcott Parsons (20 May 1767–26 Mar 1857), Find a Grave Memorial ID 118318771, citing Pleasant Valley Cemetery, Ashland, Greene County, New York, USA ; Maintained by Mookie (contributor 47515129) .

[iv] New York, US., State Census, 1855, Ancestry, Greene County, Windham, Image 8 of 34, starting at Line 7 – Samuel Parsons.

[v] In early records, the surname “Parsons” and “Persons” seem to be interchangeable.

[vi] BuzzFeed has a nice little article about “12 Weird Short Forms of Popular Names That Make You Go ‘Huh?’” which mentions why Polly is short for Mary.