Tuesday, July 16, 2013

William Tuffs Part 2: who are you?

Searching for the family of William Tuffs has been just as interesting as searching for his military record(http://tuftsgenealogy.blogspot.com/2013/03/william-tuffs-history-or-mystery.html)
This Revolutionary hero and veteran in Elkhart Indiana left few records of his family origin.
Tufts Kinsmen states he was the son of James Tuffs (Kinsmen numeration; 12-5) of Medford Massachusetts and Piscataqua (Portsmouth, New Hampshire area).  Kinsmen states James was a lumber trader living in the woods of New Hampshire and sending lumber back to Medford by ship. Carl Mauck states in Portrait of a Patriot that, according to William’s own testimony, William’s father was John Tuffs an innkeeper in Mystic (Medford) and Boston. The History of the Tuffs Family by Patricia Tuffs Snyder states the Tuffs family was from Glasgow, England [sic] and were of Scottish and English descent. They were early settlers of New Hampshire, living off the land in the wilderness. We may assume that Snyder meant Glasgow, Scotland (there is no Glasgow, England).This part of her book isn’t laden with facts. She claims there were three Williams who served in the Revolution and that they were grandfather, father, and son. This information is not confirmed but there were many William Tufts who served.

The search for William’s father John Tuffs/Tufts of this time period is confusing. I would like to trust the research of Adams in Kinsmen, but too many records conflict. 
There is Deacon John Tuffs/Tufts of Windham, New Hampshire and Belfast, Maine whose story is told in my previous blog: http://tuftsgenealogy.blogspot.com/2012/10/here-is-my-first-attempt-at-article-on.html
That story tells the conflicting stories of Deacon John either belonging to the Tufts of Medford from Peter the immigrant or being an immigrant from Ireland who was shipwrecked off Nova Scotia. In the New Hampshire records, I have found a John Tufts of Newbury who bought 2 parcels of land in Chester, New Hampshire in 1744. This describes him as a trader, no age given.  There was also a John Tufts of Newbury who was a minister of great renown who can be clearly tied to the Medford Tufts family through Peter the immigrant’s son Peter.
If we assume William was born in 1750 (even though he once stated he was born in 1740) we have the following John Tufts who could be William’s father:
I have attached the numbering for each person here from Kinsmen 2010 to better understand them. The first digit indicates the family number and second indicates the number in his family. They are all from Peter Tufts (A-3) the immigrant. His first son being 1-1 and second (James) being 1-2. The William Tuffs/Tufts subject of this story is 35-8.

      John Tuffs (12-3),  born Feb. 1704 in Piscataqua (New Hampshire) to James Tufts (4-1) and Hannah Woodman, descended from James(1-2) and Peter (A-3). This is the John who married Agnes Foote in 1731 in Newbury and raised the family in West Brookfield Massachusetts. This John was also the brother of James (12-5) who Kinsmen states is William’s father. Dr. James Hayden Tufts believed this John Tuffs was from Ireland, of Scots-Irish descent. 

 John Tufts (13-2), born in Feb. 1705/6 in Charlestown, Massachusetts was the son of James Tufts (5-1) and Ruth Grimes. He was descended from Jonathan (1-7) and Peter (A-3). This James was previously believed to the James above (4-1) but Kinsmen 2010 reversed them. This John (13-2) was a mariner, married twice, and raised a family in Medford, Massachusetts from 1727-1745, then removed to North Yarmouth, Maine where his second family was born. His children born in Medford included a William (1727) (37-1), John (1729)(37-2), and James (1738-1739)(37-6), all of whom could be our William Tuffs’ father (except James 37-6 who died young). John, the son, (37-2) was an innkeeper in Boston running the Yankee Hero. He married Mary Collins of Boston and had four daughters. He is mentioned in later court records regarding a divorce and indenture for property. His daughters all lived, had families, and died in Boston (1756-1828) . William certainly could be this John’s son born in 1750 (before the daughters) but no record of this has been found. John’s name also appeared on a loyalist list but he was later a constable so he must have only been suspected. If he was William’s father it would have been turbulent in that home if William’s claims of taking part in the Boston Tea Party are true.

John Tufts (3-3), born in Feb. 1688/9 in Medford was the minister mentioned above. He lived in Newbury, Massachusetts and raised a family of four from 1715-1726. He was the son of Peter (1-1) from Peter (A-3).  He died in Amesbury in 1750. John (3-3) had two sons, Joshua, who was in the ministry, and John, who only lived one year. It is unlikely that John (3-3) was William’s father and he was probably not the buyer of land in Chester in 1744, so there could have been two John Tufts in Newbury.        

John Tufts (16-1), born in 1723 in Medford is the Deacon John who raised two families in Windham, New Hampshire and Belfast, Maine. He was also the subject of the shipwreck mystery. His son, John, was a captain and master mariner. The younger John had two families in Newburyport from 1787 to 1794 but being born in 1749 would have been too young to be William’s father. Deacon John descended from John (6-2) and John (1-10) and Peter (A-3) or came from Ireland according to legend.

John Tufts (17-6), born in Feb. 1726/7 in Charlestown, Massachusetts, was the son of Nathaniel ((6-3) from John (1-10) and Peter (A-3). He married Rebecca Tainter in 1759 in Boston and died in 1760 in Maine. They had no children of record and were married after William’s birth date(s).  

Any other John Tufts were born after 1730 and would have been too young to have been William’s father. The other note I made from these records is that William’s service in the Revolutionary War claimed he had experience as a mariner. During the Champlain Valley conflict, William was in Skeenesborough on Lake Champlain, New York building boats; he also served aboard the Trumbull and the Royal Empire. This would indicate to me that he was from one of the families that were seafaring men, such as John 12-3 or John 13-2.

William was said to have married in Boston but no record has been found of it (yet). He is credited with daughters Helen (Sally),  and Mary (Ann or Polly).; sons, William James Tuffs (1794-1865), and Dexter and possibly a second, John. William is listed in the 1790 census in Schoharie, New York. By 1820 he had moved to Medina County, Ohio. He was in Portage, Ohio in 1830 and his pension application was filed there in 1832 but none of these censuses list his spouse by name or enumerate any children. Most trees on the ancestry.com link William to James (12-5) as stated in Kinsmen, but I have seen no sources to prove it, so these trees could originate from the Kinsmen record. When it comes to William’s family, there are varying family trees. Some indicate the children as stated above. One tree of Olmstead families indicates his wife was Katherine. History of the Tuffs family by Patricia Tuffs Snyder does not detail any of William’s children besides the son William James (1794-1865). For the purposes of this story we will follow that history and refer to the Williams as follows:
William Tuffs (I) (1750-1848) (The war hero and subject of this story)
William James Tuffs (1794-1865) His son with unknown mother
William Tuffs (II) (1824-1865) child of William James and Phylinda Olmstead
William Wallace Tuffs (1853-1925) child of William (II)

William’s (I) children

Helen (Sally) Tuffs (1785-1840) (These dates are estimated from various family trees.) No records of birth and death have been located. It is agreed that she married Jonathan C. Braman about 1820 and had up to seven children. The only record of such is:
 Eunice Marilla Braman. Her record of marriage to Joseph Preserved Eastman is recorded in History and genealogy of the Eastman family of America….. available online. It records their marriage in Wyoming, New York on September 5, 1841 and her birth as Mar 1, 1822 and her parents as Jonathan and Sally (Tuffs) Braman. According to the Elsie Eastman family tree on ancestry.com, the records document the following family: Eunice and Joseph lived in New York then New Berlin, Wisconsin in 1850. They divorced, and in 1860 they both lived in Muskegon, Michigan but Eunice and the boys lived with her second husband, Edmund Towne. In 1870, Eunice and Edmund were in Owatonna, Minnesota where she died in 1879. Joseph Eastman remarried twice after divorcing Eunice and Towne was married twice before and once after Eunice. Eunice and Joseph’s children were: Oliver O. and Jonathan Orson Eastman. Eunice and Edmund Towne had Mary Merilla Towne in 1862 who died in Los Angeles in 1954

Oliver Orange Eastman was born March 2, 1843 in Attica, New York. He followed the family to Wisconsin and Michigan where he married his step sister Anna Elizabeth Towne in 1862. He served in Company H, Michigan 9th Cavalry Regiment on 14 March 1863 and mustered out on 20 May 1863. He then enlisted in Company Battery L, Michigan 1st LA Batty L Light Artillery Battery on 20 May 1863. He was promoted to full Corporal on 27 May 1865 and mustered out on 22 Aug 1865 in Jackson, MI. Because he had lost his leg, he received an invalid pension. Oliver and Anna lived in Iowa and Minnesota before removing to Snohomish, Washington where he lived his last days. They had:
               Marion Leroy EASTMAN 1866 – 1944 Spouse & Children: Mamie Marie JEWETT 1872 –                      1923
            Elma May EASTMAN 1896 – 1977
            Roy Winfield EASTMAN 1898 – 1956
            Sylvia Irene EASTMAN 1902 – 1931
            Cecil Clinton EASTMAN 1905 – 1912
            Lloyd Marian EASTMAN 1913 – 1914

             Ella Merilla "Ellie" EASTMAN 1868 – 1955 Spouse & Children: Carmi Bert CRAMPTON                        SR 1860 – 1901
Carmi Bert CRAMPTON JR 1886 – 1984
Bertha "Berta" CRAMPTON 1887 – 1969
Anna Amelia CRAMPTON 1888 – 1911
Bernice Marian CRAMPTON 1890 – 1980
Frederick James "Fred" CRAMPTON 1893 – 1969
Harold Paul CRAMPTON 1895 – 1943
Oliver Dewey CRAMPTON 1898 – 1901

Spouse & Children: Franklin Granger "Frank" MULLIKEN1865 – 1948
Gladys Irene MULLIKEN1903 – 1972
Ralph Franklin MULLIKEN1906 – 1951
Alta Margaret MULLIKEN1908 – 1993
Evelyn Maud MULLIKEN1908 – 1908
Charles G MULLIKEN1911 – 1913

     EDMOND OLIVER EASTMAN SR 1871 – 1952 Spouse & Children: MARY MAUDE                    OVERHOLT 1880 – 1965
                 Edmond Oliver "Ollie" EASTMAN JR1910 – 1962
                 Etta Elizabeth EASTMAN1916 – 1980
                 ELSE VIRGINIA EASTMAN1920 – 2009

     Franklin Burnett "Frank" EASTMAN1877 – 1964 Spouse & Children: Mary May                                UNZELMAN1888 – 1963
                Jasper A EASTMAN1912 – 1930
                Naomi Valeria EASTMAN1914 – 2002
                Elaine Evangeline EASTMAN1916 – 1989

    Clyde Garfield EASTMAN1880 – 1923 Spouse & Children: Fredolyn "Freda" Naomi                           UNZELMAN1884 – 1941
               Ray Clyde EASTMAN1906 – 1967
               Buelah May EASTMAN1907 – 1990
              William G "Willie" EASTMAN1908 – 1993
              Ivy Freda EASTMAN1909 – 1930
              Clyde Guy EASTMAN1910 – 1997
              Dewey Gordon EASTMAN1911 – 1992
              Daisy Viola EASTMAN1913 – 1929
              Marcelious "Marcy" Orange EASTMAN1916 – 1965
              Marion Oliver "Red" EASTMAN1916 – 2001
              Oral O EASTMAN1917 – 1979
              Orval Harold EASTMAN1920 – 2002
               Goldie Ione EASTMAN

            Jonathan Orson Eastman was born in 1846 in Ohio and followed the family through Wisconsin,                 Michigan, and Minnesota. He did not go to Washington and died in Owatonna, Minnesota in 1938.               He married Anna Catherine Snyder in 1870 in Wisconsin and had;
              Elizabeth Merilla EASTMAN1872 – 1921
              Anna Amelia EASTMAN1876 – 1878
              Mabel Eunice EASTMAN1878 –
  Olive Anna EASTMAN1880 – 1966 Spouse & Children: Byron Miton BOWE1881 – 1957
Harold Melvin BOWE1909 – 1991
Kenneth Eastman BOWE1913 – 2011
Sergeant Stanley Ervin BOWE1915 – 2002
              Etta E EASTMAN1883 – 1960 Spouse & Children Orlie William FARNHAM1884 – 1966
(Unknown child)
Donna May FARNHAM1908 –
Evelaide FARNHAM1911 –
Everett L FARNHAM1915 – 1989
Dorothy L FARNHAM1916 – 2001
William John FARNHAM1920 – 2003

Elements of these families must exist today in the state of Washington. Any information about their ancestor William Tuffs would be appreciated. The Elsie Eastman tree has many pictures of these descendents on ancestry.com. Please feel free to add or correct these families in the comments section for everyone to see.

Mary Marilla Towne (1862-1954), Spouse & Children:
Alfred Lane 1864 –
Eunice Halvorson Lane 1881 –

James B. Belvidere
Eva Smedley Belvidere 1888 –

Charles C. Hoff 1862 –
Marilla Hoff  1903 – 1905
These marriages and children are not confirmed. I am looking for any information on them or their descendents.

William (I) Tuffs children: (continued)

William (James) Tuffs was born 31 March 1794 in Schoharie, New York and died 23 May 1865 in Byron Township, Michigan. In 1823, he married Phylinda Olmstead and soon after removed to Michigan. William was a farmer, born in New York in 1792” (or 1794) according to jabezolmstead.com William and Phylinda may have lived first in Saginaw, Michigan, but by 1844 they had settled in Byron Township, Kent County, Michigan. An historical sketch of Byron Township quotes “Mrs. Tuft” as saying that they moved onto their place on the last day of December 1843 and the only sign of a house was a small sled load of lumber.  Their children were George, William, Elizabeth and Eliza. William may have served in the war of 1812 but it is not clear which of the Williams are which in the records available on ancestry.com (see part 1).  William also may have served in the Mexican War (according to Tuffs Family History). William and his son William (below) died within days of each other in 1865.

Researchers of the Olmstead family have discovered more about this family in recent years and have shown the family to be as listed below. The Olmstead family researcher, Doreen Dolleman, recorded the main differences relating to Phylinda’s marriage to William James was that the children were her own and not from his previous marriage as stated in Patricia Snyder’s article. Doreen Dolleman discovered Phylinda and William’s marriage record of 1823. Both of the above articles are available by internet search and are quoted below. At http://jabezolmsted.com/VOL_9.2/JOB_OLMSTED_UPDATE.htm

“La William Reynolds Clerk of Common Pleas of Stark County July 12, 1823. I joined William Tuffs and Philinda Olmstead in holy bounds of matrimony according to law. Orlando Metcalf Justice of the Peace”

William James Tufts children:

 Mary (Ann or Polly) Tuffs (1832-Ohio). She married Samuel B. Osgood which is confirmed by a Michigan marriage record but other records of Samuel are difficult to find. One states that Samuel B Osgood was the son of Hiram Osgood of New Hampshire and his wife Eliza Edgerley of Exeter, NH. Samuel and Mary are enumerated in the 1850 Newaygo, Michigan census with an infant (Ellen?).The Edgerley family tree on which I found the connection to Hiram also states Samuel died in 1862 by drowning in the Ohio River. There are also records of Mary marrying Thomas Ainslie of England and possibly having a family. Two Osgood children (Hiram and Clara) are listed in the 1870 Byron Center census with Phylinda Tuffs in the home of William and Elizabeth (Tuffs) Evans. Please contact me with any information on their descendents.See the notes in comments below

George (?) Not much info has been found on this son. He possibly died in Middlebury, Indiana after 1850 (Kinsmen). Adams discontinued the line from here. (Possibly confused with George Tufft-below)

William (II) (1824-1865) was born in   Ohio and followed family to Byron Township. He died about May 21, 1865 from disease contracted in the Civil War as a prisoner of war. He had been released and made it home but succumbed after hearing of his father’s death. He married Almira Jane Cronkright and his sons William Wallace and Alonzo Tuffs were born in 1854 and 1856 in Byron.  A graphic description of this couple’s pioneer life in Ohio is in “History of the Tuffs Family as told in 1985 by Patricia Tuffs Snyder. Further research has found some variations in this story but it really tells the story of this pioneer family.

When they moved into t heir new home, they had one corner with pine needles spread on the floor for a bed. Their table was a large block of wood, with two smaller ones to sit on. They had a fork and spoon, a large ladle, an iron (spider) skillet, and an iron kettle. Until a well was dug, she carried her wash to the big spring at Spring Grove a mile and a half from the cabin. This is the same place where the Tuffs family had their reunions for many years.
William and Almira cut wood and hauled it to Grandville. Each trip they were able to buy something for their home. They bought a cow, a pair of geese, and windows for their cabin. They worked from sun up to sun down because as yet they had no candles or lanterns.
One day while eating, a large skunk wandered through the cabin, in the back door and out the front, before he left he sprayed them both with his scent. From that day till her death, Almira had her own personal war with skunks. She would hunt them down no matter where they might be. It was a joke for many years among family and friends if any one saw or smelled a skunk they would say “send for Almira, she’s a good skunk hunter”.

William often took his sons to visit his father and sister. Sometimes Almira would go but she’d rather stay home and accomplish some of her goals. She could not stand her sister-in-lay, Elizabeth. Elizabeth had married William Evans. They lived with her and William’s father in Byron Township. Elizabeth had to be waited on for the least little task. She never split wood, carried water, killed chickens, or planted fields as Almira did. The two women had very little in common. Elizabeth had become addicted to morphine in her early teens. A doctor had given it to her for some minor ailment, (at least in Almira’s mind). This addiction lasted her whole life. Everyone in her family suffered her change in moods.
When William went to visit his father, Almira always got a surge of ambition. Anything from cutting and splitting a huge pile of wood, to building a chicken coup. She did not waste good strength on resentment.
The one thing that Elizabeth Evans made that Almira admired was the family “hair wreath”. This was made from locks of hair of all the family members, woven into flowers and buds that were mounted on satin or velvet and framed. Elizabeth Tuffs Johnson, (grand daughter of Almira) has the Tuffs family Hair Wreath today. It truly is a work of Art. The last hair to be put into it was Libby’s (daughter of Alonzo), and Francis (son of Wallace).
Their children:

William Wallace Spouse & Children: Ellen C (Ella) Leonard1873 – 1949
Francis Tuffs1903 – Spouse & Children Hazel M (Brown) Tuffs1900 –
Muriel A Tuffs1923 – (1940 census Wyoming Michigan)

Lawrence J. Tuffs1905 – 1905
Lewis Leonard Tuffs1907 – 1908
Elizabeth Tuffs1910 –
Patricia Tuffs1913 – 1995 Spouse & Children: Stanley Harry Snyder1917 – 2004
Damian Lawrence Snyder1941 – 1999
(presumably the author of History of the Tuffs Family)

Eliza (1824) married Robert Konkle and had a large family in Michigan and died in 1897 in Byron Michigan. Spouse & Children: Robert KONKLE1822 – 1886
Sophronia Phylinda KONKLE1846 – 1874
Abram W KONKLE1848 – 1913
Wallace Robert KONKLE1851 – 1927
Ella Elagan KONKLE1853 – 1913
Hallie Dellaphine KONKLE1855 – 1873
Sidney James KONKLE1858 – 1925
Catherine E KONKLE1860 – 1860
Myrtle A KONKLE1864 –

Elizabeth (1837) married William Evans and died in 1925 in Michigan. Spouse & Children: William I EVANS1837 – 1907. (no records of family have been found)

William (I) Tuffs children: (continued)
 John Tuffs, born about 1800 was said to live in Elkhart, Indiana and one census records this. It does not, however, enumerate who his spouse and children are. John is nowhere to be found after 1850 and at least one tree notes he must have died before then. We do find records of his son George who went by the spelling TUFFT. George was in the Civil War; he enlisted in Company A, Michigan 13th Infantry Regiment on 17 January 1862.Mustered out on 04 July 1865. One tree, which states George’s death record, indicates his father was Simon Tufft and his mother was Esther Draper.  That record can be seen at the Michigan site http://cdm16317.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/search/collection/p129401coll7
If anyone has more information on this family, please forward it.
Family of George Tufft: Spouse & Children: Sarah A. Phillips1846 – 1926
Clara Edna Tufft1874 – 1930
                        (married three times)Spouse & Children: Samuel Eugene Hanson1871 – 1957
Spouse & Children: Joseph Smith1867 –
Milo Allen Smith1893 – 1952
Harley Smith1898 – 1978
Spouse & Children: Charles Mathew Mahoney1866 – 1918
Max Leo Mahoney1901 – 1961
Lloyd Mahoney1904 – 1963
Clifford E Mahoney1908 – 1971

     George Emery Tufft1879 – 1943 (no family found)
     Clifford Jacob Tuffts1885 – 1961Spouse & Children: Helen Viola GARNER1868 –
Roland G Tuffts1909 – 1978
Elements of this family may exist in Michigan today. George may have lived in Lee in Allegan County, Michigan.

Dexter Tuffs. There is no record of a Dexter Tuffs, son of William or any other Tuffs. There is the possibility that this name comes from a record of George Elbert Reed’s application for the Sons of the American Revolution under William Tuffs the Revolutionary hero.

This is the only mention of a Dexter I have found regarding the Tuffs family but it is a last name in this record. It appears to show an additional daughter of William. If that is the case, she married a Dexter and had a daughter who married a James Fisher. Their daughter Harriet married Ira Reed and their son George is the applicant. There are records of Ira Reed but they list no family of his wife Harriet. Census records of 1870 and 1880 show that Ira and Harriet lived in Jamestown, Indiana and her parents (James Fisher and Unknown Dexter) were from Ireland and New York (respectively).
Again I have to ask if anyone has information on these families, please contact me to fill in the blanks. What I really seek is anyone who may have more information on the patriarch of this family William Tuffs the soldier and hero of many battles. If he is from our Tufts clan he joins many other soldiers and patriots. The family he is assigned to by many researchers is already full of soldiers and patriots and,  if William Tuffs is not from our group, we still salute his service. I would especially like to hear if any of this family state they are of Irish descent (Scots-Irish).
I am sure there are records I have missed and clues that may lead me to them. At some point in one’s research there comes a point at which you must publish what you have and hope it opens up some more doors. Please feel free to distribute this article to fellow researchers or suggest avenues for me to pursue. For now William Tuffs remains memorialized in history and remembered by family and others.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

William Tuffs History or Mystery?

Was William Tuffs a Revolutionary soldier or just a storyteller? Was he from the Medford, Massachusetts TUFTS family or from another family? Was he even of Irish descent? 

I will present this story in two parts, the first about William’s service record and the second about his family.

Recently I received an inquiry about William Tuffs who passed away in Indiana in 1847. The local Daughters of the American Revolution chapter, which is named for William, is planning a 90th anniversary and was looking any information about him. I knew the story of William and thought this would be an easy project on which to put some information together. How wrong I was. I am still trying to track down his story and would welcome any help anyone can give me.

William Tuffs (1750-1847) claims to have taken part in the Boston Tea Party, served in the Revolution, and the War of 1812. His grave in the Bonneyville cemetery in Bristol Indiana is marked by a large stone and has two plaques provided by the Improved Order of Red Men and the Sons of The American Revolution. 
He apparently loved to tell stories about his grand service.  The marker reads:  
“[He was] present at the battles of White Plains, Germantown, Lundy’s Lane, Monmouth and Bunker Hill and [was also] … present at the time of throwing overboard the tea at Boston.” (December 17, 1773) and served in the war of 1812 (at age 72).
In 1845 he related a story to a reporter of the Goshen Indiana Democrat of being captured from a privateer in the Revolution and carried to England as a prisoner. He also recounted being captured at the Battle of Ticonderoga and bearing a scar on his face from that battle. His tea party story was in the Democrat on December 17, 1840 as related to the editor Dr. E.W.H. Ellis. Perhaps his greatest tale was that he spent the winter at Valley Forge “joking with General Washington”. I have not seen the source of that story.
I have no problem believing any of his stories and trust that any skepticism would have been expressed at the time of telling. He surely could have exaggerated but without any proof that the stories are not true, I recognize his service and am proud of him. Soldiers like William are what have made our country great. A little exaggeration should be allowed an old patriot in his later years, as well as a few mistakes on details.

I am not the first person to research or believe this old soldier. There are several references I have used in my search for the truth, including the standard Tufts Kinsmen 2010 by Herbert Adams and the Tufts Kinsmen Association, William Tuffs Portrait of a Patriot by Carl Mauck, (a pamphlet written in recent years and held in the Elkhart library in Indiana), and The History of the Tuffs Family As Told in 1985 by Patricia Tuffs Snyder.  I also searched the usual online sources such as ancestry.com and some military records websites. I did not find any solid records confirming his military service, but feel they may be found.

The records that are available are his pension applications. They were made when he was in his 80s and are somewhat inversed in the timeline. The first application relates his later service and the second covers his early enlistments.
The first application is in September 1832 from Ohio but lists his service place as New York. The pension was rejected. At that time he was living in the township of Parkman, County Geauga, Ohio. This application is interesting because it details his testimony of service in much more detail than any of the newspaper articles or other stories. The rejection states his account is in variation with well known facts

“Say to the man that the whole narrative is to (too?) at variance with with well known facts ….? of this Dept. that his claim cannot be allowed-place the papers on file”

This testimony states:

Enlistment in the spring of 1776 from Albany NY in the company of Captain Cornelius Sanford in Col. Gansevoort’s Regiment and upon arrival at Fort George was sent to Skeenesborough to assist in building ships. He was assigned to the row galley Trumbull and fought (or dodged) the British fleet in battle on Lake Champlain. The ship escaped to Fort Ticonderoga and joined Benedict Arnold despite their Captain being killed in the action. This conflict is verifiable by simple historical research. On Wikipedia, I found the Trumbull listed as one of the row galleys in the action on Lake Champlain.

                     Tuffs’s narrative goes on to relate the action after evacuation of Ticonderoga and of and of his capture after the Trumbull was blown up. He escaped after one month and returned to his home in Mystic (Medford) near Boston. This was a common story in the guarded retreat from the Champlain Valley conflict. I recently read Rabble in Arms by Kenneth Roberts which describes incidents such as this in fictional but accurate detail.

His next statement of service is enlistment at Boston in Col. Jackson’s regiment where he marched to Rhode Island then crossed the Hudson at Kings Ferry and went to White Marsh New Jersey. This portion continues to tell about the winter of 1777-78 when he was employed as a teamster around Valley Forge until rejoining his unit at Philadelphia. After that his unit was in the Battle of Monmouth June 28, 1778. It was not uncommon for soldiers to return home after major battles. Some ended up listed as deserted, some returned to harvest crops, and for other reasons, but often, they returned to service in another company. In this period, I found variation of facts. Tuffs states they went to Long Island next when history records the regiment was at Staten Island and later at Rhode Island before taking winter quarters in 1778 near Morristown NJ. Col. Jackson’s regiment was called the 16th or Jackson's Additional Continental Regiment and the history is well recorded. Francis Tufts was the Adjutant for this company. I would love to find out that he recorded William’s service but he was adjutant in 1780. Francis was promoted in the field after heroic action in battle (story to come).

After obtaining a furlough in May 1779 Tuffs returned home and signed on a privateer named Royal Empire and after early success was later captured and spent 7 months in Mill prison in England. He details that escapade more in his 1845 Democrat article I have been unable to find the records of the ships William recalls in his testimony about being a privateer and spending time at Mill prison in England. There are some names similar to his recollection but more research is required.

        William’s second application for pension is 1834 in Portage County Ohio. He states under oath that he was drafted in April 1775 in Capt. William Wentworth’s Company with Lt. John (?) serving the 3 month enlistment near Castle William in Boston harbor. He further testifies that he served in May 1776 in Capt Cornelius Sanford’s Company under Lt. Aldrich Vaughn carrying provisions across Lake George. I have found no record of a Captain William Wentworth. There was a Captain Wentworth Stewart (or Stuart) and many other Wentworths of Stoughton MA who served with Col. Gill. Benjamin Gill of Stoughton MA served his country proudly. He commanded the 3rd Suffolk County Militia Regiment, which had service at Boston in 1776 and in the Saratoga campaign in 1777 which matches William’s testimony. It was disbanded in Dec. 1777 in Albany NY.

      Tuffs continues that he was released from that company in December or January in Albany, NY. He then describes how, in early summer 1777, he went out from Mystic in Captain Samuel Tucker’s company under Lt. Peter Smith, and was in the Battle of Rhode Island. If Tuffs had the dates and some of the names of his officers incorrect, this would explain why his testimony could not be matched to that of the officers he named. And if, when he was discharged from Col. Gill’s regiment, he joined up with the NY regiment of Col. Gansevoort, his record could be confirmed. It appears he made the mistake of confusing years 1776 and 1777.

If the dates were recalled incorrectly then his next assignment would have been with Col. Jackson’s regiment enlisting from Boston in 1778 and proceeding to NJ and Valley Forge, which matches historical records of the movements of Col. Jackson’s additional Continental Regiment (16th) as stated above.

        In conclusion William Tuffs made some errors in his testimony about his service but, as I stated before, he was over eighty years old when he made these reports. If he was incorrect in his dates and some of his officer’s names, he could have still served and his records might be found. His name was not listed in the Mason’s Lodge in Boston so Herb Adams insists in Tufts Kinsmen that William was probably not at the tea party. This does not mean he wasn’t and I hope to research this question further at the new Tea Party museum in Boston. A youth of his age (23 years old in 1773) in Boston certainly could have been involved in that protest and certainly would have turned out in April 1775 for the battles of Lexington and Concord, Bunker Hill, and the siege of Boston. Young men at this time mostly joined their own towns’ militias, so I wonder why William wasn’t among the nine Tufts minutemen of Medford. It is unknown why he took up with Captain Wentworth and to what regiment Captain Wentworth’s company was assigned in the action at Castle William in Boston Harbor. 
        If William’s next service was from Mystic in 1775, not 1776 in Captain Sanford’s company at Lake George, NY, I should be able to find the records of the correct regiment. Transporting provisions across Lake George would have been in support of the ill-fated attempt to capture Canada. Next William states that he was discharged at Albany, NY. If the correction of the years is assumed, it would make William’s first application statement correct in saying that he joined the NY regiment in 1777 and was also present in the Champlain Valley conflict. 
        From there on it is certainly a muddled record but if the regiments can be traced, William Tuffs would have followed the action in Col. Jackson’s regiment and maybe Captain Tucker and Lt. Smith can be found. The ships’ records may be even harder to find. A quick search came up empty for the names Royal Empire and Black Prince but there were some ships of the same name in different circumstances and the spelling as copied from the pension application is hard to decipher. The details stated in the newspaper article about his escape from the prison ship in New York are gripping and specific.

William’s claim of service in the war of 1812 are even harder to find. There are at least 2 William Tufts that served and one from Maine died in service. There are several resources for finding soldiers in this conflict. One is U.S. Army, Register of Enlistments, 1798-1914 in the National Archives. Another is Index to the Compiled Military Service Records for the Volunteer Soldiers Who Served During the War of 1812. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration-M602, 234 rolls. It is difficult to assign to the correct persons but an attempt is made here.

This record of Enlistment shows the record of 3 William Tuffs/Tuffts/Tufts.
The first record; (William Tuffs) states on Roll at Fort Independence July 24 1814 and prisoner of war captured at Forty Mile Creek and arrived from Halifax under command of Capt. Geo. ? …discharged Aug 1814 term expired. Fort Independence was in Boston harbor, Forty Mile Creek was a battle around Stoney Creek Ontario. This subject is listed as 19 years old and certainly could not be William Tuffs as he claimed he was at the battle of Lundy’s Lane (near Niagara NY) at this same time.
The second record; (William Tufft), appears to state he was 39 years old from Medford enlisted at Utica NY but rejected and discharged.  This could be William but he would have had to disguise his age (72).
The third record; (William Tufts) states Captain Brookes Company Aug 1813,Return of dead and diseased men Sac.Har. NY (Sackets Harbor New York) Feb 17/1814 died in the service Sept 30/1813…unreadable. This may be the record of William from Belfast Maine, below as it matches his death date. No regiment is listed. (William Tufts of Belfast, Maine was born 14 May 1772 and died while in service in the War of 1812 on September 30, 1813. He was the son of John Tufts and Mary Campbell from Windham NH and Belfast, the subject of my shipwreck mystery story.)(http://tuftsgenealogy.blogspot.com/2012/10/here-is-my-first-attempt-at-article-on.html )

In conclusion, these records do not seem to confirm any service of William Tuffs, the subject of this story, but definitely leave clues for research.

There is certainly a lot of information contained in William’s tales to give me clues to find his actual record. I would love any suggestions about where to keep looking. The DAR chapter in Indiana would certainly like to correct the record as well. In part two of this story I will try and cover William’s ancestry. Kinsmen assigns him to the family of James Tuffs/Tufts of Medford and Piscataqua (Portsmouth NH) which is a family full of patriots and soldiers. Carl Mauck states that William’s father was John. Other TUFFS I have encountered in my research often include the possibility of Irish ancestors. Perhaps even the John Tuffs/Tufts of the shipwreck story or the Brookfield Massachusetts family who claim Irish ancestors. There were many descendants of William and others who have researched them, so I hope to have a full story in part two.

Friday, March 8, 2013

In honor of International Womens Day 2013; Eleanor Tufts


            Eleanor May Tufts was born February 1, 1927 in Exeter New Hampshire. She was the first daughter of James A. Tufts Jr. and Hazel (Weinbeck) Tufts. I am sure they had no idea at that time the impressive career she would have. She followed a thorough education, with different teaching opportunities and a writing career. She was a nationally recognized authority on women artists and art history.
            Life must have been busy at the farm, as Jim was starting his nursery, but he seemed to have time for his children, as evidenced by his early photos.

1930 Census

Eleanor attended the Robinson Female Seminary and pursued her higher education at Simmons College where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree. She then studied at Radcliffe for her Masters from Harvard.  After working with different educational organizations around New York City, she began her teaching posts at The University of Bridgeport and Southern Connecticut State College. She earned her PhD from New York University in 1971, This more thorough description of her career is from DICTIONARY OF ART HISTORIANS, A Biographical Dictionary of Historic Scholars, Museum Professionals and Academic Historians of Art at http://www.dictionaryofarthistorians.org/tuftse.htm
“ Her thesis was written with the assistance of Millard Meiss (q.v.) and Jakob Rosenberg (q.v.). Tufts was then hired at the Council on International Educational Exchange in New York City as director of program development. She moved to World University Service, New York, as associate director in 1960. In 1964 she became assistant professor of art history at the University of Bridgeport, Bridgeport, CT. In 1966 she joined Southern Connecticut State College, New Haven as an associate professor of art history. Tufts continued working on her Ph.D. at New York University, which was granted in 1971. Her dissertation, written under José Lopez-Rey (q.v.) was on the Spanish artist Luis Meléndez. 1974 was a watershed year for her. She was appointed professor of art history, Chair of the Division of Art at Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX, along with Alessandra Comini (q.v.); she published her important book, Our Hidden Heritage: Five Centuries of Women Artists, and was awarded a summer National Endowment for the Humanities grant. Tufts and Comini became partners, the two developing and sharing feminist approaches toward art and a home in Dallas. The two spent summers tracking down works by women artists for the books and to raise curatorial awareness of important works by women languishing in storage. Tufts helped organize the National Academy of Design's exhibition on her dissertation topic, Meléndez, in 1985. In 1987 the first director of the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Anne-Imelda Radice, asked Tufts to curate the inaugural traveling exhibition, "Women in the Arts, 1830-1930." The show received extensive and controversial coverage. She contracted ovarian cancer and died at age 64.”

Simmons College years

With my father J. Arthur Tufts on front porch at High Street

Mrs. Hazel Tufts, daughters Lib and Ellie, twins Chuck and Ken and US Marine Ralph Tufts

            Eleanor wrote five books, specializing in Spanish artist, Luis Melendez, and in the work of women artists, striving to get them the recognition she felt they deserved. She was also active in women’s issues and worked with various museums. Dr. Tufts was the curator of "American Women Artists, 1830-1930," the exhibition that opened the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, D.C., and toured the United States. She lectured and attended conferences, including speaking at the dedication of the new public library in Exeter New Hampshire. She was well-traveled, often visiting different parts of Europe in search of artists and their work, particularly women artists, and then returning home to lecture, teach, and write.

            Eleanor shared a home in Dallas Texas and taught at Southern Methodist with Alessandra Comini, also a very accomplished educator, lecturer, author, and art historian. They visited Exeter in their extensive travels and were often there for the traditional family holiday gatherings. As a child I was thrilled for Aunt Ellie’s visits. She brought tales of travel in Europe and often gifts at Christmas and birthdays.  One of Allesandra’s own books was a favorite gift of my youth.
Eleanor and Alessandra 

Eleanor’s legacy continues at Southern Methodist. The Art History Department awards the Eleanor Tufts Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, a two-year national award created to support outstanding graduate students in Art History in the completion of their dissertation and in their transition to professional academic careers. There are also other book awards in her honor and things I have not uncovered I am sure. Her papers are stored at Southern Methodist library and indexed online at:

The Eleanor Tufts papers consist of biographical data, images, correspondence, professional material, essays, articles, reports, manuscripts, and artist catalogues covering the years between 1927 and 1991, with the bulk of the materials from 1970-1988. The collection illustrates the career of a prominent feminist art historian and professor at Southern Methodist University.

The majority (70%) of this collection is Dr. Tufts' research notes.

Included is Dr. Tufts' dissertation on Luis Meléndez. Also included is a vast collection of research regarding women artists from the fifteenth to the twentieth century.
Tufts - Personal  
Box 31  
  Car Accident 1981 
  Comini/Tufts Residence 
  Disposition of Exeter Hsc. 14 Ash St. 
  Personal - Comini/Tufts House Plans 
  Personal - Correspondence 
  Personal - Eye Glasses and Birth Announcement 
  Personal - Family History 
  Personal - Legal Documents 
  Personal - Misc. 
  Personal - Photographs 
  Tufts Book Stamp 
  "Vogue Magazine," January, 1985 

If anyone is near or visiting Dallas TX and loves art. The Dallas Museum of Art has a wonderful statue found by Eleanor in a Massachusetts backyard and donated by Alessandra Comini in her honor.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Tufts’ ancestors: The Labaree family

I find it interesting that at least three of my original immigrant ancestors were named Peter: Peter Tufts, the first Tufts came from England; my Grandfather Staples’ immigrant ancestor, Peter Staples, came from England to Kittery, Maine; and Peter Labaree arrived in Salem, Massachusetts from France. All arrived before 1700.
My ancestor Jonas Tufts of Charlestown, NH married Sarah Labaree. Her grandfather, Peter Labaree (not Peter the immigrant mentioned above), was one of the first settlers of Charlestown, New Hampshire in 1750.  In 1754, he was captured by Indians.
Peter Labaree was born April 21, 1724 in Salem, Massachusetts. His father, Peter the immigrant, (1690-1740) was a French Huguenot who escaped religious persecution in France and settled in Salem. Many people have searched for more information on Peter the immigrant, but few records have been found. The history of the Huguenot persecution in France and where they escaped to is written in many references. Captive Peter (1724-1803) was early employed as a ship’s carpenter and married Ruth Putnam in 1746. (My ancestor John Tufts married Mary Putnam also of Salem. I have yet to make the connection between them.) Peter and Ruth had 9 children. The first 2 children were born in Salem and made the trip on horseback to Charlestown, NH about 1750. They are mentioned frequently in The History of Charlestown NH….1876, by Henry Hamilton Saunderson

Peter Labaree’s descendants compiled a rare book detailing the families he left and his story. History of the descendants of Peter Labaree, Charlestown, New Hampshire: genealogies and sketches of families from the French and Indian War of 1754 to the present time by Jane Labaree.  There are photocopies of this book available and it can be found at the Tuck Library in Concord, (part of the NH Historical Society-nhhistory.org) There is also a diary kept by Peter, but I do not know where it is. I believe pages of it are privately held. If anyone has information on the diary, please let me know.

The best story I have found about his capture is A Narrative of the Captivity of Mrs. Johnson:  Together with a Narrative of James Johnson, Indian Captive of Charlestown, NH – 1757, a very well-written, easy-to-follow account written by Peter’s fellow captive, Mrs. Susanna Willard Johnson.

The story of their capture and trip to Canada is eventful. Mrs. Johnson gave birth to a child while on the trail (and named her Captive). The Indians were brutal but showed compassion for the mother. (They also knew they would receive more ransom money in Montreal if the captives lived.) Mrs. Johnson was eventually was settled in St. Francis, a large Abenaki village in Quebec. In 1757, she returned to America after suffering severely in Canadian jails. Her husband was James Johnson, a soldier, who also returned and was killed at Fort Ticonderoga in 1758.

Peter Labaree escaped from Montreal in a much different manner than Mrs. Johnson. Peter was indentured to a carpenter in Canada and won his freedom in three years time, but because of the French and Indian conflict, he was held as a prisoner of war. He finally made his escape and travelled on foot through New York in the most difficult of circumstances, unable to build fires or travel the usual Indian routes due to fear of recapture.  In 1757, Peter returned to Charlestown and his wife.

 Another descriptive version of this story can be found in Historical address at the dedication of a monument in Charlestown, N.H. 1870 by Benjamin Labaree. The address, which is quite lengthy, details some of the history of Charlestown and stories of the captivity. The audience must have had quite a bit of patience to sit through it but it’s great to read about the era, and Mr. Labaree was an eloquent scholar. Photocopies of this book can also be found from online sources (eBay).

Labaree farmhouse Charlestown NH


Peter and Ruth raised their family of nine children in a home Peter purchased in 1780. While some later families settled in Canada and Vermont, the old homestead was held in the family for many generations.  Peter and Ruth’s son Benjamin lived and died at the old home and had it moved closer to the road. His son, James, had the brick home built in 1830. It was last in posession of his grandson Carl Carey, but was finally sold out of the family in 1905.
For many years a grandfather clock was maintained in the home. It was built in 1780 by Stephen Hassam who also made numerous steeple clocks in the Connecticut River Valley. The “Labaree hall clock” was handed down from the Labaree to the Tufts family, and is still in working condition today.  A painting of one Labaree has also made it to the Tufts family but we have not determined if it is Peter the captive or one of the Benjamin Labaree descendants. Benjamin Woods Labaree of Newburyport, MA suggests it is the portrait is of Benjamin Labaree who was the president of Middlebury College from 1840 to 1866. He was also the author of the address at the dedication of the monument (above). This line of the Labaree family is full of very accomplished educators.

Peter and Ruth’s graves are in the old cemetery in Charlestown, where the monument dedicated to the captives is located.



Sarah Labaree Tufts was born May 1, 1799, daughter of Benjamin and Hannah (Farwell) Labaree. She died in 1893. Here is some information about Sarah Labaree Tufts:
“She died on her Ninety-Fourth birthday and the Seventieth anniversary of her marriage. She possessed a buoyant and radiant nature, responsive, communicative, sympathetic, with an overflow of greeting and hearty recognition at her own door, and never laying aside her active participation in the great charities of her own communion. She was an active reader and listened to reading with great avidity. She was a constant and consistent member of the Congregational Church in Walpole. We record with special interest, as one of her last benefactions, her generous gift toward the restoration of the house of God in Walpole. She had served many years in the Sabbath School as a teacher of rare intelligence of an enterprising and independent study of the word of god while her loyalty to her denominational tenets remained steadfast to the end. (” History of the descendants of Peter Labaree, Charlestown, New Hampshire: genealogies and sketches of families from the French and Indian War of 1754 to the present time by Jane Labaree.)
Robeson/Tufts home; Walpole NH
Tufts Kinsmen 2010 quote:
b.   1, Sep. 1798 in Charlestown [Somerville], Mass.
d.   3, Sep. 1879 in Walpole, N. H.
m   1, May  1823 in Charlestown, N. H.
dau of Dr. Benjamin and Hannah (Farwell) Labaree
b.   1, May 1799 in Littleton, N. H.
d.   1, May 1893 in Walpole, N. H.
had 1) Timothy, 2) Sarah, 3) James, 4) Martha F., 5) Clarissa J., 6) Susan
   JONAS originally moved to South Charlestown, N. H. where he owned a large brick house which stood on the meadow. His wife, Sarah, was a descendant of Peter Labaree who was captured by Indians with the Johnson family in 1754 and taken to Canada.  She was sister to Rev. Benjamin Labaree, who was President of Middlebury College for 20 years. They first moved to Prospect Street in Walpole but in 1876 Jonas bought the widow Susan Robeson’s house on Westminster St. East, corner of Elm, a home as steeped in patriotism as Barbara[Frietchie] . The story is told in the Walpole history: On the night of Mrs. Robeson’s death it so happened that there was to be a brilliant torch light procession to encourage the election of Abraham Lincoln for president (first term).  Every house around the Common was to be brightly lighted. As the twilight settled down, she asked why her windows were not lighted. When it was explained that she would perhaps rest better in a dimly lighted room, she smiled and said “Let every panel of glass in every window of this house be lighted at once if there are candles enough in town to do it.”  She died before morning. [HWAL 1:120]  Jonas was described as parsimonious.  His daughters had but one silk summer dress between them.  After he died, widowed Sarah is said to have blossomed out!
Labaree website:
and blog:
Nutfield genealogy also has brief story on the fort at Charlestown: