Higby had a lawsuit about a boat which he bought on Long Island, and the case was tried at New Haven before a court held by the magistrates l8 Oct. Richard Mills of Stratford, now in Court, testyfieth upon oath, that he had bought of the wife of Jonas Wood, called Halifax Jonas 6 , several goods in her husbands absence, which her husband hath aloud of and received of him for them, also he hath bought goods of the said Jonas and in his absence, upon her demand, hee hath paide her for them, which he hath alowed also.
As Jonas Wood was not present the case was postponed. It was again taken up in May The case was again taken up 28 Sept. Whether Higby and Wood actually gained the knowledge of court practice which the court so happily discovered at this point is a question. However, Higby and Wood talked the matter over and settled the case. It is probable that Higby either got his boat back, or the money was refunded.
Higby was in business later with a Jonas Wood, but it was not this "Halifax Jonas.
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Edward Higby did more than frequent the harbors of Long Island. His name appears in the list of the first inhabitants and landowners of Cow Harbor, in the town of Huntington. This was probably as early as Higby's land was probably near where Centerport now is. Two years later he is given as an inhabitant of Cold Spring Harbor, about eight miles farther west.
It is evident that Edward Higby was in business in this section prior to from the following affidavit, made for the purpose of showing that Capt. Thomas Matthews, Higby's cousin, was not a partner with Higby and Wood. The statement curiously enough was sworn to before Jonas Wood, "Halifax Jonas," and a Jonas Wood was party to the matter:.
Mathers answered stay he could not tell and this deponent and jonas wood and Mathews sete downe and Mr. Mathewes sayd to Edward higbe corm helpe and they 2 went to sid that is to say Mr. Mathers and Edward higbe and we sate together and take a pipe of tobackow so when Mr. It is evident from this affidavit that Higby and Wood, at least, were associated in business; but in the record of a matter before the court of Huntington 29 July , when Thomas Matthews brought an action against Joanna Strickland Wood, widow and administratrix of the estate of Jonas Wood, deceased, it appears from the books of account of Capt.
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Matthews that "six pipes of wine and pipe of rum were delivered aboad the boate upon account of Edward higbe, jonas wood" and himself. It seems that they were trading with the West Indies, carrying barrel staves thither and bringing back rum, sack and other goods. He was clerk of the town of Huntington, and represented this town and other towns along the north shore of Long Island in the General Assembly of Connecticut.
This was before It is the first lawsuit recorded there, and is in book, "Sessions No. I," the first entry in the book, now kept at Riverhead, Long Island. Skidmore and this Wood were among the corporators of the town of Huntington under the jurisdiction of New York in ; and Skidmore remained in the town until Then he returned to Connecticut, dwelling at Fairfield where he died two years later, leaving property there to his grandson John Higby.
Skidmore was married three times. Edward Higby continued to reside at Cold Spring Harbor; but in he failed to return from one of his trading voyages. He was gone much longer than usual and no word coming from him he was thought to be lost at sea, as shown by the action taken by the court at Huntington:. It was also agreed by the same corte that thos that are to prize the estate of Edward higbee that they shall leve sufficient unprized as to leve his wife on seut of clothes for Lordes dayes and allso that which is convenient to cloth the children that is to say to paralel with thar mothar it was also ordered by the sam corte that Thomas Skidmore junear wase to have the disposing of Edward Higbee's 4 children tell they are of age to provide for them selves, in case theyr father by his coming se not case to allter what the cort has don.
Fortunately he was not lost at sea. He lived to return to his family, but I have not found the exact date. It is related as a bit of history of the event that he arrived home on Sunday, and not finding his wife and children there, he made inquiry, and borrowed a horse and rode to the place where they were staying. On his arrival his wife rushed out to meet him, and as he dismounted he embraced and kissed her. It was Sabbath! For a husband to kiss his wife on the Sabbath was against the law. And the story goes that he was arrested and fined.
This must have been while Long Island was yet under Connecticut law 9. There is evidence, however, that he returned soon after his will was probated; for on 17 Oct.
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The record does not state which he did, but this case seems to have led to another:. It is the father Edward Higby here referred to, as the son Edward was not yet ten years old; hence, he must have returned to Huntington before the date of the first of these two cases. It is believed that his wife Jedidah died shortly afterwards. Patterson, a prominent genealogist, whose father's sister Ann married Anson Higby states in his manuscript notes on the Higby Family that the church records of Middletown, Conn.
I have searched for her name in the church records of Hartford, but have not found it. I called in the assistance of Dr.
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Arthur Adams 11 , who knows the history of the Hartford churches and who is also an able genealogist and particularly interested in the early history of the Higby Family, as Abigail Adams of his Family married Edward, the son of the first Edward Higby; but he was not able to find Lydia's name in the church records of Hartford, or the date of her marriage with Edward Higby. It is not doubted that Edward Higby removed to Middletown as early as , for shortly thereafter he bought a tract of land near Middletown, as shown by the following record:.
Sachem, owner a true proprietor of a large tract of land in the woods toward New Haven at and about the land now in possession of Mr. Jonathan Gilbert, entitled and known by the name of Meriden, do sell Edward Higby one parcell of land adjoining to the lands of Jonathan Gilbert 12 aforesaid, hills, rocks, brooks, swamps, and all other appurtenances, bounded and conformably delivered by marked trees and by land of the sayd Jonathan Gilbert and Pilgrims Harbor or River, all which sayd parcell of land with prerogatives, privileges and any kind of appurtenances thereon and thereunto belonging.
It shall be lawful for the sayd Edward Higby, his heirs and assigns, to improve, possess, enjoy and that forever, as fully and freely as the sayd Scankeet ever did or might have done. In witness whereof by these presents I bind myself, my heirs and assigns quietly and peaceably to leave in full possession of all the premises the sayd Edward Higby never to be molested by me the sayd Scankeet, my heirs, or any other Indian or Indians whatsoever, and so subscribe my name.
In presence and witness of the mark of Scankeet. This land is just west of Middletown. Higby Mountain, on which is located the reservoir of the water system of Middletown, is a part of this purchase.
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Besides buying the land from Scankeet, Higby petitioned the General Court of Connecticut, held at Hartford 6 July , to set off to him this tract of land; and the Court appointed Nathaniel White, Samuel Stocking and Samuel Bowman "to view a tract of land that Goodman Higbe hath petitioned for to the Court, and to make report to ye Court at October Sessions on what they find it to be. The following year the General Court granted him exoneration of "country rates for two years for making and maintaining the way over Pilgrim's Harbor [Harbor Brook] passable for man and horse" during that time; and Middletown voted 12 Feb.
And 8 May Edward Higby took the freeman's oath before a court of election at Hartford with 29 others, thus becoming fully qualified as a citizen. The first church record I find after he removed to Middletown is of the baptism of his son Samuel. This entry was made 12 Mar.
Middletown Church Records. It is probable that Samuel and William were his youngest children, and that his other children were baptized elsewhere. It may be that Nathaniel and Sarah were also born at Middletown. It is rather to be believed that his daughter Lydia was his first child by his second wife. I feel that Patience was the last child by Jedidah, and she was perhaps born shortly after the father's will was called out of the hand of Jonas Wood, for at that time Edward had only four children. On 14 Oct. On 20 Feb.
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He conveyed to his "son Thomas Higby of Middletown," 16 Aug. The next year he was chosen ordinary keeper in Middletown. And, finally, 29 Sept. Newton's land.
In addition to these pieces of land he received from Abraham Smith thirteen head of cattle. This exchange of property with Smith closed out all of Higby's lands at Middletown, except six acres of upland in Westfield Society and a piece of meadow land adjoining it, which land was bounded on the south by "land of Thomas Higbe his son. A grant by letters patent, dated 17 May , and recorded in book 5, page , at Jamaica, was received from the State of New York by Edward Higby and others in confirmation of the territory of the town of Jamaica.
He and his wife Lydia continued to reside in the town of Jamaica until his death, which occurred probably just a few days before 23 Sept. It is recorded at Jamaica in deed book A, page , reversed. Diligent search was made there in for the will itself, but none of the county officials was able to find the original instrument. Wills in the early days after being registered were returned to the owners. It may be taken that the record shows all of the textual features of the will.
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