The Wisconsin Cartters - Chapter Three
The early settlements of Westfield, Springfield, and Hadley in western Mass., Farmington and Hartford in Conn., were destined to play an important role in the lives of many pioneering families who were intent on moving westward. The location of these settlements in the Connecticut River Valley placed them in the natural path of westward migration. Of these settlements, Westfield was particularly important as the starting base for a westward-looking Cartter family. Here two families, descendants from early immigrant pioneers, were united through marriage. These two pioneer immigrants were: Rev. Thomas Carter of Woburn, Mass and Lieut. Joseph Kellogg of Farmington, Conn.
The unions of these two families came about on September 8, 1768, when Mary Kellogg, oldest daughter of David Kellogg married Nehemiah Cartter who had recently arrived at Westfield from Leominster in Mass. It was the family of Nehemiah and Mary Cartter that constituted the fifth generations in America of both families and gave birth to the Cartter family whose descendant James Bruce (2) was to arrive in Wisconsin in 1843. But first a bit about these two early families.
The name Carter is a very common one in early New England history and therefore has made it difficult for genealogists to always keep relationships clear. For a background of the name let’s turn to a most recent book A History of the Carter Family published in 1972 by the American Genealogical Research Institute where we find the following quotes:
“The evidence and circumstances of a number of ancient records, plus an understanding of British history, allows us to make a number of fairly safe assumptions about the family line. Chief among these is a consideration of the family name Carter, which according to all recognized authorities is one of the great class of family names which was derived from the occupation of its first bearer. Undoubtedly, the name Carter originated in its application to the tender or driver of a cart or small wagon, and we can safely say that the use of the term “carter” as describing that person who drives a cart probably had its origin sometime during the great crusades. This period of English history 1096 to 1204, was the period of the flowering of the English feudal society, one of the most important developments of that period was the rise of the middle class, particularly the urban middle class. Where only a few generations before these people had made their living from working the land, by 1100 they were beginning to be keenly interested in trading and merchandising and in other occupations which sustained trade. One of the most important of these was transportation involving wagons and carts. Thus it was probably during this time that the first Carter founded the family name. - - - They (the Carters) along with thousands of other Englishmen left Britain during the seventeenth century in what has come to be known as the “Great Migration.” Generally, this period ran from 1607 to 1650, and it followed a period of economic and political turmoil.”
The first Carter recorded as coming to America came on the good ship Mayflower in 1620. His name, Robert, may be found on the original Mayflower list. He was a young man and unfortunately failed to survive the rigors and sickness of that first winter. There is no indication as to his point of origin in England or his family background.
Thomas, later to be known as Rev. Thomas, arrived in the Massachusetts Bay Colony from England late in 1635 at the age of 26 years. Genealogists point out that at least three other Thomas Carters arrived in the colonies during the same year, a fact which caused much confusion as to family records. Howard W. Carter in his book Carter Genealogy published in 1909 discusses in some detail this problem of identity and helps to clear up some details as to Rev. Thomas Carter’s early life in the Colonies. It is Rev. Thomas with whom the Cartter family in Wisconsin identifies.
A genealogy of the Rev. Thomas Carter family prepared by the author, is to be found in part II of this book. This record brings together that information which he has been able to identify as relating to the family down to the eleventh generation.
Following are listed the male descendants in the direct line through the fourth generation to the point where our Cartter story picks up with Nehemiah and Mary (Kellogg) Cartter of Westfield, Mass.:
1st Generation THOMAS was the son of James Carter, yeoman of Hinderclay, Suffolk County, England. He was born in 1610: was graduated from St. John’s College, Cambridge University with B.A. and M.A. degrees. He was a fellow student of John Harvard, founder of Harvard College in Mass. Both came to America about the same year. Thomas settled first at Dedham, Mass., then moved to Watertown and on Nov. 22, 1642 he was ordained as the first minister of Woburn, Mass., a charge which he served the remaining forty-two years of his life. His was reported to be the twenty-fifth Congregational Church established in America.
Rev. Thomas married Mary Parkhurst, eighth child of George Parkhurst, who had also arrived in New England about 1635. She had been born in England and came to the new country with her father. Rev. Thomas and Mary Carter had a family of nine children, all but the oldest having been born at Woburn.
2nd Generation Rev. SAMUEL, oldest son of Rev. Thomas, was born in Watertown August 8, 1640. He received a liberal education and was graduated from Harvard College in 1660. He held a number of positions in the settlement of Woburn; was commissioned to set up a grammar school, the village having increased in size to over one hundred persons. He later acquired property in the new settlement of Lancaster, Mass. He supplied the pulpit there for some time until a regular minister was secured. His signature appears on a petition May 18, 1653 to name the town of Lancaster. In 1692 he received a call to the ministry at Groton, Mass. He died in 1693 at the age of 53. He married Eunice brooks Oct. 10, 1655, daughter of John Brooks of Watertown. They had eight children.
3rd Generation SAMUEL, born January 7, 1678 the oldest son of Rev. Samuel, moved with his family from the Woburn - - Watertown area to the incorporated settlement of Lancaster. At least two of his brothers did likewise. He settled in a new section of Lancaster later known as Leominster. It was here that at least four of his sons settled on farms. Leominster was a hotbed for Indian troubles. At one time it had to be vacated for a period of from three to five years after 50 to 55 settlers had been killed and virtually all buildings burned. Samuel married Dorothy Wilder, daughter of Nathaniel and Mary Wilder, and they had twelve children.
4th Generation NATHANIEL, second son of Samuel and Dorothy was born in Lancaster; lived there and in Leominster all of his life. He owned a farm on what was then known as Bee Hill and was active in town and church affairs. It is he to whom Nehemiah, mentioned earlier in this chapter, is related either as a son, or as a nephew whom he raised. Genealogists are not clear on this relationship.
Nathaniel married first Thankful Sawyer daughter of Elisha Sawyer, second Dorcas Spofford, and had either eleven or twelve children.
The first members of the Kellogg family had come to New England between 1635 and 1650. Four sons of Martin Kellogg: Nathaniel, Joseph, Daniel and Samuel came to America from Braintree, County of Hertford, England according to information found in the book The Kelloggs In The Old World And The New World, written by Timothy Hopkins in 1859 and found in three volumes. No definite record is available as to whether they came together or separately.
Martin Kellogg was a weaver or cloth worker, and consequently he and his family were seriously affected by the 1637 depression of the weaver’s trade upon which Braintree’s economy was largely based. This may have accounted for the brothers’ move to the new world. Nathaniel, the oldest son of Martin is known to have been at Hartford, Conn. in 1639. Joseph, his next younger brother is first known to have been in Farmington, Conn. in 1651. It is thought that Daniel may have come over with Joseph, but if he did their paths soon separated, he being one of the early settlers at Norwalk, Conn., which was incorporated in 1651. Samuel’s path was very similar to
that of Joseph.
1st Generation of Kelloggs (from whom Mary was descended)
LIEUT. JOSEPH, son of Martin was baptized in Great Leighs, England April 1, 1626. He married Joanna – probably in England. She died Sept. 14, 1666. He married 2nd Abigail Terry of Windsor, Conn. He was in Farmington, Conn. in 1651, where he was an early settler and served several terms as selectman. He sold his property in February 1655 and removed to Boston, Mass. With his family he moved to Hadley, located in western Mass. on the Connecticut River and became one of the proprietors. In 1661 the town made an agreement with him to keep the ferry between Hadley and Northampton. He built his house on a small “home lot” which had been reserved by the town for the “Ferry Lot.” Joseph, his son John, and grandson James Kellogg kept the ferry until 1758, almost a century. Stephen Goodman, who married a daughter of James Kellogg kept it still later and from him it received its last name “Goodman’s Ferry.” Joseph was selectman in Hadley for six years.
Early in the history of New England, military companies or “train bands” were formed to protest the settlers. Hadley voted “there should be a training.” Oct.7, 1678 Joseph was commissioned Lieutenant of this company. His military service extended for twenty-nine consecutive years.
Joseph was the father of twenty children nine by his first wife and eleven by his second. Fourteen of these children reached maturity. He died in 1707 or 1708.
2nd Generation JOHN, son of Lieut. Joseph was baptized in Farmington, Conn., December 19, 1656. He married first Sarah Moody b. 1660 daug. of Samuel and Sarah Moody. She d. Sept. 10, 1689 and he m. 2nd Ruth _____. He resided in Farmington and Hadley and succeeded to the ferry in Hadley. His name appears in a list of those owning the largest estates in Hadley in 1720, when it was valued as 114 Pds. 16 s. John was father of eleven children, five by his first wife and six by the second. He died between 1723 and 1728.
3rd Generation CAPT. SAMUEL, third son of John b. April 1, 1687 m. 1st – Mary Ashley, his cousin, July 8, 1774, she died April 8, 1728. He m. second – June 3, 1728 – his cousin Rachel Ashley. He moved to Westfield, Mass., where he is first mentioned in the records of March 10, 1712. He established quite a reputation as a builder, a mill operator, and an ardent hunter. He died May 27, 1761 and was buried at Westfield. He had twelve children, eight by his first wife and four by his second.
4th Generation DAVID, third son of Capt. Samuel was born in Westfield, May 30, 1721, married April 1747 to Elizabeth Jones of Enfield, Conn. He was resident of Westfield and served under General Amherst in the expedition for the invasion of Canada, was impressed April 6, 1759.
He had eleven children of whom Mary was the oldest. He died March 6, 1776.
Westfield, Mass. was truly frontier and the edge of civilization for over fifty years. Its first settlers arrived in 1633. A trading post was located here in 1640; and the town of Westfield authorized in 1669. It is located about 100 miles west from Boston and ten miles west of the Connecticut river which seemed to roughly mark the western boundary line for early settlement from the east. It was Indian country but fairly good relations were established as long as hunting rights were honored. This may be symbolized by the name Westfield which reportedly, in Indian language was “Warwunockoo” meaning “it is good hunting” which in truth it was in those early days.
Henry Martyn Burt in Volume I of First Century of the History of Springfield, Mass. writes:
“In the years 1634-35 movements looking toward permanent settlement in the Connecticut valley had begun, but it was not until 1636 that there was anything like a concert of action to found towns as far westward from Boston as Springfield (approximately ten miles east from Westfield and on the Connecticut river). - - - John Winthrop describes his journey from Boston to visit Mr. Pynchon some time later. “ - - - His route was from Boston to Lancaster and thence up the valley of the Nashua river - - - He traveled on horseback and was part of three days enroute.”
In Timothy Hopkins’ genealogical record of the Kellogg family entitled The Kelloggs in the Old World and the New World appears the following statement concerning the migrations that followed the Kellogg brothers’ early settlement in the Connecticut River Valley.
“From their homes in the Connecticut Valley the descendants of Joseph and Samuel (Kellogg) began their migration to that west where so many are now found. Until 1733 Westfield had been the most western town in Massachusetts. In that year Sheffield (in the S.W. corner of Mass., west of the Berkshire Hills) was incorporated and the first road to the west was from Westfield, following the Indian path over the hills to Lower Houstannick, as it was then called. Soon after this we find among the leading men of that town the name Kellogg. Here the migrants were met by their cousins from Connecticut who had followed the valley of the Houstannick and Farmington rivers after having first tried an eastern migration to Brookfield. - - - Soon after the revolution a new West was found, and the tide of emigration from New England was directed to this new territory. Some of the Kelloggs took their way over the mountains and through the valleys to the Hudson, and then by the shores of Lake Champlain to Canada; others followed the Mohawk to the fertile fields of central New York; and still others to the wilderness of Saratoga County. Here again there was a meeting with some descendants of Daniel of Norwalk, and together they have continued their westward march, until now there is not a state or territory in the west even to and beyond the pacific, which has not had a Kellogg among its early citizens.”
The Connecticut River Valley region served as a uniting spot for branches of the Kellogg family who had chosen between Mass., and Conn. for their first point of settlement. This early decision had no doubt been made at least partially, because of religious differences expressed in the two states. In the Conn. River Valley the Puritanical lines sis not seem to be so tightly drawn.
For some insight into ethics of the day here is a paragraph from Alice Morehouse Walker’s book Historic Hadley.
“Until 1675 – 50 families composed the Hadley settlement. (Northernmost on the Connecticut River at that time) They governed their unruly members with a steady hand. The law of the general court, that persons whose estates did not exceed 200 pds. should not wear gold or silver lace on garments made of silk, was rigorously enforced. The wives of John Westcan, Joseph Barnard, Thomas Wells Jr,. Edward Grannies, and Joseph Kellogg and Maiden Mary Broughton were arraigned before Northampton judges as person of small estate “wearing silk contrary to the law” and were fined, admonished or acquitted according to the gravity of the offense.
Later certain young men were convicted of wearing long hair, and were reprimanded by the court.”
We might add that Hadley, organized in 1659, was settled by Puritan members of churches in Hartford and Wethersfield.