John Smith was born at Voluntown (now Sterling) Windham Co. Ct. March 7th, 1749. He was the seventh son of Lemuel and Martha COIT Smith. As his father died when he was ten years old he probably lived with his stepfather Mr. Humphrey Avery at Poquetonock, 7 miles south east of Norwich, and 6 miles south west of Preston, until he went to college. He and his brother Isaac graduated from Princeton (then called the “College of New Jersey”) in 1770 when James Madison was attending. Founded by Presbyterians anxious to assure that educated ministers would fill the Pulpits of their rapidly increasing churches, he and his brother Isaac studied theology under Dr. Witherspoon, as the Seminary was not established till 1812. Witherspoon was the only ordained clergyman to sign the Declaration of Independence, and for six years thereafter he was an active and influential member of the Continental Congress. Under President Witherspoon commencement took on a revolutionary flavor. In 1770, among other things, the entire graduating class wore American-made clothes.
John Smith became a Congregational minister, and on the 22nd of April 1772 he was settled at Dighton, Bristol Co. Mass. As assistant pastor to Rev. Mr. Nathaniel Fisher, with a settlement portion of 180 English pounds to be paid in 3 years, one third each year, and a salary of 75 English pounds per year. Mr. Fisher was allowed a salary of 26 English pounds. Mr. Fisher died five years later on Aug. 30th, 1777, aged 91.
July 8th, 1773, Rev. John Smith was married to Alice Andrews of Dighton by the aged pastor Mr. Fisher. They had 10 children, 8 sons and 2 daughters, the youngest born in 1797.45
The Dighton Company was organized in the winter of 1788 to purchase two townships of land in Ontario County, New York in the present towns of Richmond and Bristol, (named after Bristol Co. Mass.) west of Lake Canandaigua. The land conveyed was actually about 2 ½ townships, a tract of about 6 miles by 15, or about 90 square miles, approximately 60,000 acres. (Turners book says 46,020 acres). The title was taken for the company in the names of Calvin Jacobs and John Smith. In 1789 John Smith and others went to the new purchase by the Susquehanna route. On their arrival at Canandaigua, Smith preached the first sermon there, and the first in all the Genesee country save those by Indian missionaries and by the chaplain at Fort Niagara and at Brant’s Indian church at Lewiston.46
April 4, 1801 John Smith tendered his resignation as minister of the Dighton church and moved to Canandaigua the same year. After this he accepted no permanent pastorate, but served the rest of his life, traveling from place to place, as a missionary of the church. Shortly after his arrival at Canandaigua, and by his advice, a number of settlers from different parts of the Genesee country, who had been members of the churches of the Eastern States, met at Canandaigua and were organized as a church by Mr. Smith and celebrated the Lord’s Supper. The organization was not permanent, apparently having been made because it was supposed by them that the Lord’s Supper could not lawfully be celebrated otherwise. The members of the church were few and widely scattered, and could not conveniently come together every week for religious services. Indeed it does not appear that they ever met again.47 48
We find the name of John Smith as a member of the church at Bristol about nine miles southwest of Canandaigua, and nearly the geographical center at the Dighton Company’s purchase, so that it seems probable that it was here that he established a permanent church.48 He also gave a deed of 6,000 acres of land to found a seminary of learning at Canandaigua.49
John Smith, however soon moved from Bristol for we find him, before 1805 preaching at Painted Post, in Steuben County, New York, about 50 miles east of Bristol, and at the village of Newtown (now Elmira) about 15 miles farther east.50 He must have remained some years in this vicinity for his wife Alice ANDREWS
Smith died at Elmira July 14, 1811, 53 years old.51
It is probable that most of the children were by this time provided by him with property of their own, and that many of them were already married and settled in their own homes. At the death of their mother but two of them, Benjamin and Thomas were children, 17 and 14 years. The youngest daughter, Martha, was 20 years old and possibly already married.
The Rev. John Smith now began to cover a wider field in his missionary work. We next hear of him in him in Lycoming county, Pennsylvania, 30 or 40 miles further south where he stayed until 1812, and the following year in Kentucky, where he was a member of the State Synod in 1813.52 Of his labors in Kentucky we know nothing save that he lived for a time in Nelson county, about 100 miles southwest of Cincinnati and near the center of the state. He died in Kentucky in 1820, 71 years old.53
The gravestone transcriptions found on the wonderful “Tri-County” site states he died in 1817 at 68 years old, viewable at:
Children of Rev. John Smith and Alice ANDREWS Smith, all born in Dighton, Massachusetts.54
i. John Smith born October 31, 1774 Monday 1 o’clock A.M.
ii. Joseph Coit Smith born February 3, 1777 Thursday 6 o’clock P.M.
iii. Alice Smith born May 30, 1779 Sabbath 5 A.M.
iv. Elkanah Smith born June 10, 1781 Monday 11 P.M.
Elkanahs Gravesite transcription can be found at: http://www.rootsweb.com/~srgp/cemb/oakhil20.htm
v. Henry Smith born December 10, 1783 Thursday 10 P.M.
vi. Francis Smith born January 17, 1786 Monday 4 P.M.
vii. Lemuel Smith born May 25, 1788 Sabbath 4 P.M.
viii. Martha Smith born June 27, 1791 Sabbath A.M.
ix. Benjamin Smith born April 20, 1794 12 M.
x. Thomas Andrews Smith born August 25, 1797
With the exception of our ancestor Henry Smith we know but little of the history of these children of Rev. John Smith. It is possible that a more careful search of the records of Dighton and Bristol county, Mass. May reveal some facts concerning one or two of the older ones, but it is probable that all of the children went west with the family in 1801.
In the settlement of the estate of Thomas Andrews, brother of Alice ANDREWS Smith, the court succeeded in tracing descendants of five of the above children of Alice.
Thomas Andrews left his estate to his wife for her lifetime and after her death to the children of his 7 brothers and sisters. The widow lived to be 97. He died in 1822 she in 1871, 49 years later! In the meantime the heirs became numerous and widely scattered. The estate was nearly $49,000, but 95 percent was used for probate expenses and cost of division among the heirs. The Bill of Equity that contains a partial list of the descendants of Alice ANDREWS Smith is on the following page.
Descendants of Alice ANDREWS Smith, with the share of the estate to which pg. 3
each was entitled, from the report of Samuel Peckham, Master in Chancery, to the
Supreme Court of Rhode Island, Bill in Equity No. 1189.
Heirs of Elkanah Smith, son of Alice
Abigail Smith, widow of Elkanah, Ithaca, New York 1-105
Elizabeth Leary, Chicago, Ill., great grand daughter 2-2205
Alice Kline, Chicago, Ill., great grand daughter 2-205 (see Alice and Johns mother Alice A.
John G. Kline, Oberlin, Ohio, great grandson 2-2205 Smiths 1830 marriage records
Charles Smith, Rockford, Ill., grandson 2-735 shown and linked on the bottom
Julia McD Smith, Prescott, Wisc., (Widow of John, grandson) 2-2205 of pg. 5)
Charles Smith, Prescott, Wisc., (son of John) great grandson 1-2205
Mary Smith, Prescott, Wisc., (daughter of John) great grand daughter 1-2205
Jenny Smith, Prescott, Wisc., (daughter of John) great grand daughter 1-2205
Abby Smith, Prescott, Wisc., (daughter of John) great grand daughter 1-2205
Smith, Troy, Pa., (widow of Francis, grandson) 2-2205
Eliza Rockwell, Troy, Pa., (daughter of Francis) great grand daughter 2-2205
Lucy Smith, Troy, Pa., (daughter of Francis) great grand daughter 2-2205
Cyrus T. Smith, Bethlehem, Pa., grandson 2-735
Theodore Smith, Montrose, Pa., grandson 2-735
Abigain B. Barden, Ithaca, New York, grand daughter 2-735
Children of Henry Smith, son of Alice
Henry B. Smith, New York, grandson 1-105
Horatio S. Smith, Brooklyn, New York, grandson 1-105
Frederic P. Smith, minor, great grandson 1-105
Children of Francis Smith, son of Alice
John A. Rhone (Smith) Galesburg, Ill., grandson 1-210
Susan A. Parker, Monmouth, Ill., grand daughter 1-210
Martha S. Worrell, Monmouth, Ill., grand daughter 1-210
Stella Smith, Monmouth, Ill., grand daughter 1-210
Virginia Few, Monmouth, Ill., grand daughter 1-210
Frances H. Smith, Monmouth, Ill., grand daughter 1-210 Most of this Smith family information
was compiled by Henry Smith Munroe
Children of Lemuel Smith, son of Alice with aid from Alice Durant Smith
Samuel B. Smith, Hilton, Ill., grandson 1-245 submitted by Evan Smith
Frances H. Smith, Brimfield, Ill., grandson 1-245 795 Townsend Ave.
John B. Smith, Gridley, Ill., grandson 1-245 New haven Ct. 06512
Alice Smith, Chenoa, Ill., (daughter of Feldon) great grand daughter 1-245 firstname.lastname@example.org
Carrie Smith, Chenoa, Ill., (daughter of Feldon) great grand daughter 1-245 on 3/5/03
Rachel F. Smith, Chenoa, Ill., (daughter of Feldon) great grand daughter 1-245
Adeline Shotty, Kirkwood, Ill., grand daughter 1-245
William J. Smith, Kirkwood, Ill., grandson 1-245
Rachel Smith, Kirkwood, Ill., granddaughter 1-245
Daughter of Martha (Smith) Hinckley, daughter of Alice
Mary S. Hinckley, Kansas City, Mo., grand daughter 1-35
Beside the above, Lieut. Commander Archibald N. Mitchell, who served in the
navy during the civil war, and his sister Alice Mitchell, of Monmouth, Ill. Were
descendants of Alice (Andrews) Smith, probably great grand children,
but the line of descent is not known.
Rev. John Smith was the grandfather of Professor Henry B. Smith pg.4
of the Union Theological Seminary, New York.
Henry Boynton Smith
SMITH, Henry Boynton, clergyman, born in Portland, Maine, 21 November, 1815: died in New York City, 7 February, 1876. He was graduated at Bowdoin in 1834, and studied theology at Andover theological seminary, where his health failed, at Bangor theological seminary, and, after a year (1836—1837) as librarian and tutor in Greek at Bowdoin, and subsequently at Halle where he became personally intimate with Tholuck and Ulrici, and in Berlin, under Neander and Hengstenberg. He returned to America in 1840, was a tutor for a few months (1840—1841) at Bowdoin, and in 1842, shut out from any better place by distrust of his German training and by his frank opposition to Unitarianism, he became pastor of the Congregational Church of West Amesbury (now Merrirnac), Massachusetts in 1842-'7. In 1847—1850 he was professor of moral philosophy and metaphysics at Amherst. Of the old school of the - New England Theology,” Smith was one of the foremost leaders of the new school Presbyterians. His theology is most strikingly contained in the Andover address, “Relations of Faith and Philosophy,” which was delivered before the Porter Rhetorical Society ~n. 1849. He always made it clear that the ideal philosophy was Christocentric: he said that Reformed theology must “ ‘Christologize ‘ predestination and decrees, regeneration and sanctification, the doctrine of the Church, and the whole of the Eschatology.”
In 1850—1854 he was Washburn professor of Church history, and in 1854—1874 Roosevelt professor of systematic theology, at Union Theological Seminary. He was moderator of the assembly of the new-school Presbyterian Church in 1863, and at the general assembly of the next year delivered a discourse, which was published under the title of the "Reunion of the Presbyterian Churches" (New York, 1864). He was subsequently a member of the general assembly's committee on reunion with the old-school branch of the church, and presented a report on a doctrinal basis of reunion (The reunion of the Presbyterian churches 45 p. 23 cm., New York, Sherwood, 1867). Which can be viewed in total online in the “Making of America” collection at:
He read a " Report on the State of Religion in the United States" before the Evangelical alliance which met in Amsterdam in 1867, to which body he was a delegate. He founded the "American Theological Review," and was its editor from 1859 till 1862, when it was consolidated with the " Presbyterian Review," which he edited till 1871. The University of Vermont gave him the degree of LL.D. in 1850, and Princeton that of D.D. in 1869. His principal works are "The Relations of Faith and Philosophy" (New York, 1849): "The Nature and Worth of the Science of Church History" (1851); "The Problem of the Philosophy of History" (1853) ; "The Idea of Christian Theology as a System" (1857); "An Argument for Christian Churches" (1857); " History of the Church of Christ in Chronological Tables" (Charles Scribner, 1859); a new edition of the Edinburgh translation of Greseler's "Church History," volumes iv, and v. of which he chiefly translated (5 vols., 1859-'63); a revision of the Edinburgh translation of Hagenbach's " History of Christian Doctrine" (2 vols., 1861-'2) ; a new edition of Stier's" Words of the Lord Jesus," with James Strong (1864 et seq.); and, with Roswell D. Hitchcock, "The Life, Writings, and Character of Edward Robinson" (1864). His health failed in 1874 and he died in New York City on the 7th of February
See E. L. (Mrs. H. B.) Smith, Henry Boynton Smith, His Life and Works (New York, 1881), and Lewis F. Stearns, Henry Boynton Smith (Boston, 1892), in the American Religious Leaders series.
The Life of Dr. Henry Boynton Smith, by Prof. Timothy Dwight: pp. 792-809
Title: New Englander and Yale review. / Volume 40, Issue 163 Publisher: W. L. Kingsley etc. Publication Date: November 1881 City: New Haven Pages: 852 page images in vol.
Rev. John Smith was the great grandfather Henry Goodwin Smith, son of Rev. Henry B. and Elizabeth Lee (Allen), b. N. Y. City, Jan. 8, 1860. M. A., A. C., 1884; D. D., Maryville, 1895; Wabash, 1899. Psi Upsilon.
Prepared Emerson's Collegiate Acad., N. Y. City; Columbia, 1877-78; A. C., 1878-81. Union T. S., 1881-84; post-grad. work Union and Andover T. S., 1884-85; ordained, Ap. 15, 1886; p. Presb. Ch., Freehold, N. J., 1886-96; studied U. of Edinburgh, 1896; prof. of systematic theology, Lane T. S., O., 1896-1903; p. Unitarian Ch., Ottawa, Canada, 1907-09; Unitarian Ch., Northampton, Sept. 23, 1909- June, 1923. Four Minute Man, 1917-18.
From notes of his lectures, William S. Karr prepared two volumes of Dr Smith’s theological writings, Introduction to Christian Theology (1883) and System of Christian Theology (1884)(revised and published this book written by his father). Dr Smith contributed articles on Calvin, Kant, Pantheism, Miracles, Reformed Churches, Schelling and Hegel to the American C’yclopaedia, and contributed to McClintock and Strong’s Cyclopaedia; and was editor of the American Theological Review (1859 sqq.), both in its original form and after it became the American Presbyterian and Theological Review and, later, the Presbyterian Quarterly and Princeton Review.
See E. L. (Mrs. H. B.) Smith, Henry Boynton Smith, His Life and Works (New York, 1881), and Lewis F. Stearns, Henry Boynton Smith (Boston, 1892), in the American Religious Leaders series.
Rev. John Smiths parents are Lemuel and Martha (Coit) Smith. Lemuel
was born in Plainfield Ct., Feb.25th, 1710-11.
He died Sept. 21st, 1759. His tombstone in the Oneco cemetery reads:
As I fought A house to haf
Deth found me one here
In this grave
here to lie till ye loud cri
Rols down ye Ski: arise ye dead
Martha (Coit) Smith is the only daughter of Rev. Joseph Coit and was born in Plainfield Ct. circa 1713 and died at the home of her eldest son, the "Hon." Francis Smith, in Plainfield New Hampshire. Lemuel and Martha had 11 children!
Rev. John Smiths wife Alice Andrews is the daughter of Elkanah Andrews
(b.Dighton, Mar. 4th, 1731) and Alice Beal (b. Hingham, Nov. 2nd, 1739)
Funny to note that Rev. Johns son Elkanah Smith married one Abigail Beal. Their graves can be found at:
And I find Elkanah and Abigail's daughter Alice A.(Andrews?) Smith marriage to William Kline in 1830 at:
Elmira Gazette 1830-1831
From Marriages and Deaths July 17, 1830 to July 28, 1832. Elmira Gazette, Elmira NY Abstracted by Isabell Rydel republished on Tri-Counties Genealogy & History Site by Joyce M. Tice
1830 2 OCT M Kline, William m in this village on Tues evening last, by the Rev. E. Lathrop, Mr. William Kline to Miss Alice A. Smith, dau of Elkanah Smith.
Sincerely, Evan Smith
Your Tri-County website has been very helpful in tracing the trails of my 4th great granddad, Rev. John Smith. (More CT. Smiths) Since he was one of your "first settlers" I have attached a MS Word file containing some of his history as I currently know it. I hope some of this information will be of some use to your site and its users as well as possible Smith relations. Some initial observations are:
Regarding naming the numbers on the 1810 census of Smithfield Township,
my best guess to date (3/5/03) is as follows:
"SMITH Rev. John Smith and Alice Andrews removed from Dighton, Massachusetts to Wells, related to be the first settlers. Their residence was in central Wells on warrant parcel 1388 and 1394 as evidenced by deed (10:50) in which Samuel Criss sold 200 acres to John Egbert "on which Rev. John Smith formerly lived." He is presumed to be the Rev. John Smith enumerated in Smithfield Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania in 1810 (Bradford County and Wells Township had not yet been formed). If this was the same Rev. John Smith there was a male child of age 10 and under age 16,"(Thomas Andrews Smith, 13 years old in 1810) "two male children of age 16 and under age 26,"(Benjamin Smith, 16 and Lemuel Smith, 22) "and two females of age 16 and under age 26 in their household" (Martha Smith, 19 and Alice Smith, 31; Can we suppose that a woman still unmarried and living at home at 31 might reasonably have reservations about occupying the "up to 45" category?).
"Alice (Rev. John Smiths wife) d. 11 July 1811 54y 6m (ts)."
"John petitioned with others in 1812 to create a road in the Seeley Creek Valley from the state line extending south through Wells and on to Sugar Creek near Troy."
"John d. 15 May 1817 68y (ts)" (Our family records state he died in 1820 in Kentucky at age 71) "buried in the old Baptist Church yard or known as the Wisner Burying Ground in Elmira, New York with Alice. Bodies removed from this cemetery for a park and the Smiths were reintered in Woodlawn Cemetery, Elmira."
"Francis Smith was of Wells in 1812 when he petitioned with others for a road in the Seeley Creek Valley from the state line to Sugar Creek. Francis appears on the 1812-13 and 1814 assessments but not thereafter." (Son Francis would be 26 years old in 1812.)
Eldest son John would be 36 in 1810 (see MS Word file for more info
Son Joseph would be 33 in 1810
Son Elkanah would be 29 in 1810
Son Henry would be 27 in 1810 and may have gone west with the rest of the family but he settled in Portland Me.
Son Francis would be 24 in 1810
"John Smith appears on the 1816, 1817, 1818, and 1819 assessment lists of Wells." (The years 1818 and 1819 may support his Death in 1820 rather than the 1817 transcribed from the gravestone, or this could be the eldest son who would be 42 years old in 1816.)
Maybe he kept a home here while "wandering" Kentucky as a Missionary?
Records at Princeton state that "he became a Missionary in the neighbourhood
of Canandaigua, New York. He gave a deed of six thousand acres of land
to form a seminary of learning in Canandaigua. Afterwards, Mr. Smith removed
to Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, where he remained till 1812, when he
removed to Nelson County, Kentucky, acting as a Missionary in both places.
He died in Kentucky in 1820."
Some Princeton records for brothers Isaac and John viewable at:
"Two other families, one or both by the name of Reeder, followed Smith, and built their cabins where we have the village of Wells; one was opposite the present residence of C. L. Shepard, and the other where John Roy lives. In 1795, Rev. Daniel Thatcher organized a Presbyterian Church at Elmira, and constituted the adult members of these three families a branch of the same. This was the first religious organization hereabouts, but did not long continue, for the Reeders soon moved away. They left a little grave where C. L. Shepard has his garden, which probably indicates the first death in town."
DO WE KNOW WHO LEFT THE GRAVE, THE REEDERS OR THE SMITHS? Is there any inscription on the marker? (The youngest child was Thomas Andrews Smith who was 4 for his own Journey west in 1801).
What’s this about giving six thousand acres of land to form a seminary of learning in Canandaigua? . I read that the "The Ontario Female Seminary was founded in 1825. Its buildings are commodious, and pleasantly situated upon grounds containing 7 acres." Maybe the Seminary sold the other 5,993 acres to fund the "pleasantly situated, commodious buildings," etc? Any ways, my 4th great granddad must have found some "gold plates" while wandering the wilds and sold them to some "other Smiths" 9 miles away in Manchester, or up at Palmyra, cause if the Dighton Co. bought from Gorham and Phelps at 50 cents an acre, that’s…um…er…ah…$3000. in mid to late 1790’s dollars! So that's where my trust fund went!
Nice picture of The Ontario Female Seminary
But…Rev. John Smith probably didn't give the land to The Ontario Female
Seminary if this is true:
"Ontario Female Seminary incorporated in the village of Canandaigua in 1824 and constructed the following year on land donated by the manager of Ontario Bank, Henry B. Gibson."
Or was the "academy" the alleged recipient of the aforementioned six thousand acres? But I read "this academy was founded in 1795, by Gorham and Phelps." (And as of 1860) "It is in a prosperous condition."
Taken from HISTORICAL AND STATISTICAL GAZETTEER OF NEW YORK STATE; J.
H. French; 1860; R. P. Smith, publisher; Syracuse NY;
And I didn't find anything here:
Ontario County Deeds Index Letter "SM to SN"
YEAR Grantee SURNAME FIRST NAME GRANTOR SURNAME FIRST NAME LIBER PAGE
1836 SMITH Arabella ONTARIO FEMALE SEMINARY
1792 SMITH John PHELPS Oliver 1 290
1793 SMITH John LATTA James 2 30
1803 SMITH John WILLIAMSON Charles 9 165
1803 SMITH John WILLIAMSON Charles 9 167
1804 SMITH John MAGEE Henry 9 620
1807 SMITH John PHELPS Oliver 11 451
1807 SMITH John PENWELL Joseph 12 84
1808 SMITH John PULTENEY Sir James 13 534
1810 SMITH John PHELPS Oliver 14 339
1811 SMITH John PORTER Arnold 16 77
1814 SMITH John WILDER Gamaliel 21 258
1815 SMITH John AUGUSTUS Ernest 22 475
1815 SMITH John JOHNSTONE Sir John L. 23 445
1818 SMITH John SMITH Charles 30 334
1791 SMITH John GORHAM Rebekah 1 187
1820 SMITH John M. LEAVITT David 36 247
1803 SMITH John W. BALDWIN Samuel 9 39
1794 SMITH Jonathan SMITH Joseph 3 31
1796 SMITH Jonathan SMITH Stephen
So the question remains about the "6000 acres." (I have submitted queries with the Ontario Co. records and archives center.)
Also do you know of any record of John Smith and Calvin Jacobs holding title of the lands for "The Dighton Co."?
I'm also searching for any known descendants of Rev. John Smith
I see in a Bill of Equity that the widow of grandson Francis and his two daughters Eliza Rockwell and Lucy Smith were still living in Troy Pa. in 1871 (descendants of Elkanah).
Any information or reflection would be greatly appreciated.
Princeton and the Presbyterian Church Historians are currently looking into the History of Rev. John Smith. I hope to learn more especially where he went in Kentucky.
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