George Thomas Little.

Genealogical and family history of the state of Maine; (Volume 3) online

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"The Seemly St. Clair." On the roll in the
church at Dives, Normandy, he is alluded to as
"William le blcmde." He followed William
to Hastings, but seems to have disagreed with
his illustrious kinsman and in 1068 left Eng-
land and formed an alliance with Alalcolm III
of Scotland, who made him steward to the
queen and warden of the marches. He and
William became bitter foes and they met in
battle array near the Tweed repeatedly, in
which contests the Conqueror more than once
played a losing card. William lost his life in
one of these sanguinary conilicts. He mar-
ried Doratha Dunbar, daughter of the Earl
of ]\Iarch. and obtained a grant of the barony
of Roslin, in Midlothian. Children : Sir Will-
iam and Henry.

(VIII) Sir William (3). son of William

(2) and Doratha (Dunbar) Sinclair, suc-
ceeded to the baronial title and estate of his
father.

(IX) Sir Henry was a son of Sir W'illiam

(3) Sinclair and took the succession.

(X) Sir William (4) was the son of Sir
Henry Sinclair and died about 1270.

(XI) Sir William (5) was the son of Sir
William (4) Sinclair. He was sheriff of
county Edinburg for life, and sat in the par-
liament of Scone, February 5, 1284. when the
succession to the crown of Scotland was set-
tled after the death of Alexander III, The
same year he was of the commissioners sent
to France to obtain a queen for the king who
was a widower, which resulted in making
Joletta, daughter of Count de Dreux, the
queen. In 1292 he sided with Baliol, who
aspired to the crown, and swore fealty to
King Edward of England; he died in 1300,



STATE OF MAINE.



1771



leaving three sons, Sir Henry, William and
Gregory.

(XII) Sir Henry (2), eldest son of Sir
William ( 3 ) Sinclair, swore fealty to King
Edward of England in the dispute over the
Scottish succession between Baliol and Robert
Bruce, the English monarch espousing the
cause of the former, but Henry subsequently
went over to Bruce. Henry asserted the in-
dependence of Scotland in a letter to Pope in
1320.

(XIII) Sir William (6) was the son of
Sir Henry Sinclair, or St. Clair, as the name
was interchangeably used, and accompanied Sir
James Douglas on his expedition to the Holy
Land and was killed with him in fighting the
Moors in Spain, August 25, 1330. His tomb
is still to be seen in Roslin Chapel and repre-
sents the person of a knight in armor, at-
tended by a greyhound.

(XI\') Sir William (7) was the son of
Sir William (6) St. Clair, or Sinclair. He
married Isabel, daughter of Malise, Earl of
Strathern and Orkney.

(XV) Henry (3), son of Sir William (7)
St. Clair, became Earl of Orkney and in 1379
obtained confirmation of his title from Haco
IV of Norway. This was the island where the
original Rogerwald, the great father of the
race, held sway in 888.

(XVI) Henry (4) was the son of Henry
(3) St. Clair, and was the second Earl of
Orkney and Admiral of Scotland. He was
the chief attendant of Prince James, after-
ward James I, when he was captured at sea
by the British in 1405. The earl was sent to
the tower c! London, but released and per-
mitted to return to Scotland. He was not
living in 1418.

(XVII) William (8) St. Clair, third Earl
of Orkney and Earl of Caithness, the first of
the family to hold that title, was the son of
Henry (4) St. Clair. He held various im-
portant offices in the kingdom, including high
chancellor, and was a laird of vast influence
and an extensive landed proprietor. He re-
sided at Roslin Castle, the scat of the "lordly
line of St. Clairs" for many generations. It
was eight miles from Edinburg. was situated
on a projecting rock overlooking the Eske
valley, being reached by a bridge. It is ruins
now, but all parts are visible and some of it
in a fair state of preservation. In this earl's
day it was noted for its baronial splendor
and open hospitality. Father Hay, a member
of the household, said: "As a prince at his
palace of Roslin Castle he kept a great court
and was rovallv served at his own table in



vessels of gold and silver and was waited
upon by lords. He had his halls and other
apartments richly adorned with embroidered
hangings. His princess, Elizabeth, was served
by seventy-five gentlewomen, whereof fifty-
three were daughters of noblemen, all clothed
m velvet and silks, with chains of gold and
other ornaments, and was attended by two hun-
dred riding gentlemen in all journies : and if it
happened to be dark when she went to Edin-
burg, where her lodgings were at the foot of
Fryars wynd, eighty lighted torches were ear-
ned before her." This earl founded Roslin
Chapel m 1446 and endowed it with lands and
revenues. It is still extant and is a noble
creation of Gothic art. It stands above the
castle a short distance. Beneath its pavement
the old lords of the manor lie buried in ar-
mor. There was a superstition that the night
before the death of anv of the family the
chapel appeared in flames. Sir Walter Scott
has apostrophized the legend :

"O'er Roslin all that dreary night

A wondrous blaze was seen to gleam ■
Twas broader than the watuh-flre light

And redder than the bright moonbeam
It glared on Roslin's castled roik,
^ It ruddied all the copse-wood glen ■
Twas seen from Dryden's groves of oak.

And seen from caverned Hawthoruden.
Seemed all on Are that chapel proud,

Where Roslin's chief uncofflned lie •
Each Baron for a sable shroud

Sheathed in his iron panoply."

The present earl was described as a very fair
man, great stature, broad bodied, the tradi-
tional yellow hair, and well proportioned. He
married Margaret, daughter of Archibald,
fourth Earl of Douglass. He married (sec-
ond) Marjorie, daughter of Alexander Suth-
erland, of Dunbeath. Children by Margaret:
William, and Catherine, who married the Duke
of Albany. ^ By Majorie he had Sir Oliver,
Wilham, his successor in the earldom ; Sir
David, Robert, John. Bishop nominate of
Caithness; Eleanor, Elizabeth. Marion and
Marjorie.

^ (XVIII) William (9), second Earl of
Caithness, was the seconti son of William (8)
and Marjorie (Sutherland) St. Clair. He
was killed at that desperate and death-dealing
bout between the Highlanders and the English
on Flodden field. His marriage was with
Mary, daughter of .Sir William Keith. Chil-
dren : John and Alexander.

(XIX) John, third Earl of Caithness, was
the eldest son of W'illiam (9) and Mary
(Keith) Sinclair. He invaded Orkney and
was met by a body of Orcadians, commanded
by James Sinclair, governor of Kirkwall Cas-
tle, and the earl and five hundred of his fol-
lowers were slain. He married Elizabeth,



STATE OF MAINE.



daughter of Sir William Sutherland, of Duf-
fus. Heirs: William, who died issueless;
George and David.

(XX) George, fourth Earl of Caithness,
was the second son of John and Elizabeth
( Sutlierland ) Sinclair, lie was a cruel, malev-
olent man and imprisoned his own brother.
He was in favor with the crown, however, and
held high offices of trust, with Justiciar of
Caithness and sat as a peer at the trial of
Bothwcll. He died September 9, 1582. He
had married Elizabeth, daughter of Earl of
Montrose, and tlieir i>sue was John, William,
George, Barbara, Elizabeth, Janet and another
daughter.

(XXI) John (2), Master of Caithness, was
the oldest "son of George and Elizabeth Sin-
clair, and died in Girnigo Castle, 1576. In
1543 he obtained from Queen Mary a charter
by wliich the earldom became a male fee to
him and heirs male. He married Jean, daugh-
ter of Patrick, Earl of Bothwell, and (second)
Bessie Gunn. Children: George, James, who
was the ancestor of General Arthur St. Clair
of revolutionary fame, who settled in Penn-
sylvania ; John, Agnes and Henry.

(XXII) Henry (5), youngest son of John
(2) and Jean Sinclair, received a conveyance
from his brother, Earl George, of part of the
lands of Borrowstone and Lybster with the
"miln and fishings," and he made a reversion
of them to the earl September 23, 1606. He
died of paralysis while besieging the castle of
Kirkw-all in 1614. He married Janet Suther-
land and had a son John.

(XXIII) John (3) there is cumulative force
in saying was the son of Henry (5) and Janet
(Sutherland) Sinclair, was born about 1630,
and was in E.xeter, New- Hampshire, in 1658,
living on Wheelwright creek. After many
centuries he landed on the shores of the broad
Atlantic, where mayhap some of his Norse
ancestors, some "viking bold," had moored
his dragon ship. John and his descendants
spelled his name phonetically as Sinkler. It
was a common occurrence for a man in com-
ing to a new country to change the way of
spelling his name. Exeter was settled by in-
voluntary emigrants, led by Rev. John Wheel-
wright, who was ostracised from the old Bay
Colony on account of his Antinionianism. The
Puritans left the other side of the Atlantic
because of religious intolerance and no sooner
had they set foot here than they had troubles
of their own making. They bounced out
Roger Williams.* John Wheelwright, perse-
cuted the quiet Quakers and hung the witches
in old Salem. This was doling out medicine



to their neighbors which they had refused in
iconoclastic England and had traveled far to
avoid, and certainly shows an inconsistency
difficult to explain. It is not known whether
our John was of the Wheelwright set ; at
any rate, the colony was feeble and glad of
any accessions. In 1659 ^<^ purchased sixteen
acres of land, and the town thought enough
of him to grant him "fyften acres"' October 10,
1664, "lying on the old Salesbury way, be-
yond James Walls land," and in 1680 twenty
acres more. They had the usual neighbor-
hood troubles in those da3's and there was a
dispute relative to the line betwixt him arid
Leftenant Hall. It was referred out for set-
tlement, but John sued Ralph Hall for tres-
pass (see Norfolk county records, for New
Hampshire was under Massachusetts jurisdic-
tion). He took the oath of allegiance and
fidelity in November, 1677, and December 6,
1678, he took title to twenty acres of upland
from Daniel Robinson. John Mason had been
granted New Hampshire by a patent from the
crown, and his representative was Edward
Cranfield, an arrogant, arbitrary magistrate,
who ruled his subjects with a rod of iron.
Public feeling ran high against him, and open
rebellion broke out. A petition was sent to
his Majesty, which may be seen in the Mas-
sachusetts archives, praying for relief, and this
petition bears John Sinkler's signature, though
he made a mark to his will. He was a sturdy
man, full of the Scotch traditions of pluck,,
frugality and persistence, and accumulated his
share of this world's goods to cheer his life in
the "sere, the yellow leaf." His province rate
was sixteen shillings and four pence. He w-as
the basic ancestor of most of the Sinclairs and
St. Clairs in America. Their diverging lines
are many, and their abodes are everywhere the
sun shineth. His w-ill was made September
14, 1700, to which he made his mark, a round
robin. The first name of his wife was Mary.
She died, and he next married one Deborah.
She was a shrewd woman, and drove a good
bargain, having an eye to the main chance.
She made a business contract with John be-
fore marriage, anticipating the modern sociolo-
gists. W'e imagine it was not wholly a real
love ai¥air. Issue : James, Mary. Sarah,
Maria and John.

(XXR^) James, eldest son of John (3) and
Mary Sinkler, was born in Exeter, July 27,
1760, and this town, beside the tidal Swam-
scott, was always his home. He was a hus-
bandman. At sixteen he entered the military
service in King Philip's war, in Captain John
Holbrook's company, and took the oath of al-



STATE OF MAIXE.



^771



legiance and fidelity November 30, 1677. He
signed the petition condemning the despotic
Crandall, and his bold signature- may be seen
in the Massachusetts archives. He was a con-
stable in 1694, jur}man in 1703, selectman in
1695, 1700 and 1706. The Indians hung like
a pall over the little community and fell upon
the unprotected settlers unawares. They knew
not of their impending doom till too late. The
home of John Sinkler had been marked for
pillage, but an accidental discovery of the lurk-
ing foe in ambush prevented the terrible catas-
trophe. John was used to the discomforts of
the camp and the sword-play of the field ; for
thirty years of his life was more or less on
the march or the defensive. He bore the title
of sergeant. He was one of the proprietors
of Gilmanton, New Hampshire, and notwith-
standing his blood-letting encounters and his
long, wearying journeys from home and loved
ones, John's life was on the whole a winner
and things ran smoothly and prosperously
enough considering the trying times in which
fate had cast his lot, and as his sun dipped
toward the western horizon he had the where-
withal to make his last days "days of peace."
His will was made July 23, 1732, and his
province rate was two pounds, eighteen shill-
ings and six pence. He married Mary, daugh-
ter of Richard and Prudence (W'aldron)
Scammons, who was born May 31, 1673.
Progeny : John, Joseph, Samuel, Jonathan,
Richard, Ebenezer, Benjamin, Mercy, Martha,
David, Zesiah and Mary.

. (XXV) Joseph, second son of James and
Alary (Scammons) Sinkler, was born in Exe-
ter, 1692. He was one of the original pro-
prietors of Gilmanton, New Hampshire, and
by the will of his father received forty acres of
land in Epping, New Hampshire. His name
is upon a petition in the state house at Con-
cord, New Hampshire, regarding an election
in Newmarket. He lived in South Newmarket,
now Newfields, New Hampshire, on Smart
Creek. "Westward the star of the empire takes
its course.'" Joseph disposed of his holdings in
Newmarket, and being of an adventurous turn,
acquired of the Masonian proprietors a tract
of land on Buck street, in the town of Pem-
broke, New Hampshire, and plunged into the
wilderness. His was lot number one, .of fifty-
nine acres, and was near what is now Sun-
cook, on the banks of the musical Merrimack.
He married Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas
Lyford, of Exeter. Children : Thomas, Jo-
seph. John and James.

(XXVI) Thomas, eldest son of Joseph and
Elizabeth (Lyford) Sinkler, was born in



South Newmarket, now Newfields, in 1721,
and is the first time the name Thomas ap-
pears in the family, which conies from the
Lyford line of his mother. He went with his
father to Buck street, Pembroke, the people
hereaway partially obtaining their living by
fishing for lamphrey eels in the Merrimack.
In order to protect the fish in the river, a
petition was sent to the state government to
restrain fishing on certain days. Thomas
signed this, and we may infer he was a fisher-
man as well as a farmer. This was probably
the first attempt made in the United States to
protect fish by law, and the Buck street peti-
tioners builded better than they knew. . The
roaming spirit was still upon Thomas, and he
purchased, September 21, 1764, a farm in "El-
lonstown," now Allenstown, which adjoined
Pembroke. To this place he transferred his
household abode only to remain one year.
Sanborntown, New Hampshire, was the next
place to enroll him as a citizen, and his farm
of ninety acres was on Steel Hill. He was
surveyor of highways, tythingman, and signed
the Association test in 1776. True to his kin-
dred, he could not remain idle when the smell
of powder was in the air, and we accordingly
find him in Captain Chase Taylor's company.
Colonel Stickney's regiment, and General
Stark's brigade. They joined the northern
continental army, but went only as far as
Charlestown, New Hampshire. Thomas once
was young, whereas now he was getting old
and decrepit. The weight of seventy-two win-
ters that had rolled past rested upon his stoop-
ing shoulders somewhat heavily, and the clouds
of eternity were sweeping down upon him.
He had been a pioneer in four towns, South
Newmarket. Pembroke, Allenstown and San-
borntown. Right nobly he had done the work
of a town builder. It would seem he had but
one more move to make, and that to his last
resting place, but his courage was yet good.
The flow of emigration was still westward,
and Vermont was the objective point of many.
Two of his brothers had already gone there,
also his son Benjamin. Together with his son
James, he went to Hardwick, Vermont, and
living a few years, his bones were laid at rest
in December. 1796, in a cofifin painted black.
The records do not state the name of his wife.
His descendants, named from both classical
and biblical sources, were : Thomas, Sarah,
Bathsheba, James, Zebulon and Constantine.

(XX\'II) Thomas (2), second son of
Thomas (i) Sinkler, was born in Newmarket,
April 14, 1751. He settled in Aleredith, New
Hampshire, on Lake Winnepesaukee. His



STATE OF MAIXE.



home was in the Pease school district near the
Oak Hill church, and the farm he occupied is
now owned by a son of Thomas Veascy.
Thomas was a tall, slender man, and not
blessed with the best of health, which was
contrary to the Sinklers, a robust race. He
died of consumption, a taint which probably
came into the family from other lines. He
attended the Free Baptist church, and though
not a communicant, the reading of the good
Book was a daily custom in his home not hon-
ored in the breach. He was a home body, in-
oflfensive of manner, attended to his private af-
fairs, taking very little interest in public mat-
ters. He married Alary Weed, of Stratham.
New Hampshire, w'ho was born October 25.
1755. 5he died. He married (second) Nancy
Pike, of Meredith, who was thirty-four at the
time. Six of his children were borne by
Mary and two by Nancy. John Meed, James,
Thomas. Mary, William, Joseph, Sarah and
Susan.

(XX\Tn) James (2), second son of Thom-
as (2) and Mary (Meed) Sinkler, was born
in Meredith, New Hampshire, May 9, 1777.
He changed the orthography of the name to
St. Clair, and defying the laws of emigration,
turned his steps eastward, landing at Owls
Head, Thomaston, Maine, December 5, 1803.
This was an undeveloped region, but fast com-
ing into notice as a migrating point for Alas-
sachusetts people. He was a joiner and
worked at his trade in Thomaston, Warren
and Union, Maine. He invested in ninety-six
acres of wild land in Union, and built a log
hut thereon. The new land was rich and fer-
tile, and jjroduced abundant harvests under the
magic touch of the husbandman. Wild beasts
were troublesome, and his wife often fright-
ened away the bears as they were breaking
down the corn. Both husband and wife were
devoted Christians, and the "St Clair path"
over the hill, along which they went to church,
still marks the way. He was dark complex-
ioned, black hair and eyes, six feet and one
inch tall, weighing one hundred and ninety
pounds. He married Sally Wiggin, of Stra-
tham, New Hampshire, who was born Sep-
tember 18, 1778, and died Jime 5, 1868, a
nonagenarian. Posterity: Lavina, Mary,
George Washington, Mehala. Thurza, James
Madison, Erastus, Sarah, Lucy L., Abigail B.
and Guildford D.

(XXIX) Guildford Dudley, youngest son of
James (2) and Sally (Wiggin) St. Clair, was
born in Union, Maine, September 30, 1824,
residing in Camden, that state, and was a ship
carpenter and farmer. He assisted in the con-



struction of many ships for the government in
war time, and was in Maryland and \'irginia
manufacturing ship timber for the northern
market, in 1877 he retired to his farm in
Camden, near Raggcil mountain. He was a
pronounced Republican, taking a deep interest
in public questions of the day, and was an
omniferous reader. He married Leonore
Helen, daughter of Colonel Asa and Hannah
(King) Payson, of Hope, Maine. She was
a schoolteacher, and a w'oman of rare intelli-
gence and much executive ability. Issue :
Ashley, George I'\, Lauriston F., Edna P.,
Eva L., Grace L. and Elmer C.

(XXX) Ashley, eldest son of Guildford
Dudley and Leonore Helen (Payson) St.
Clair, was born in Camden, Maine, IMarch 22,
1847. He was educated in the public schools
of Camden and at the Normal school at Farm-
ington, Maine, where he graduated in i86g.
He came to Calais, where he taught school for
twenty-five years as principal of the high
school. He studied law in the otifice of I Ion.
George M. Hanson, and was admitted to the
Maine bar in 1894, when he formed a partner-
ship w-ith his old law preceptor. He was
elected superintendent of schools for Calais in
1904 and has been relected every year since.
He has been a member of the Calais city coun-
cil, and run one year for the office of county
attorney on the Prohibitory ticket. He is now
a Republican and very active in party coun-
cils. He is a member of the Baptist church,
as also are his family. He is a member of
Calais Lodge, No. 45, Knights of Pythias, of
the Joel A. Hancock Post, No. 34, Grand
Army of the Republic, of which he is past
commander. He enlisted in Company E.,
Second Maine Cavalry, for three years from
November 10, 1863, and served till the end of
the war. His service was in the Department
of the Gulf, under General Banks. His battal-
ion was stationed much of the time at New
Orleans. He had his horse shot from under
him in a skirmish at Marianne, Florida, and
his sabre was shot away from his side at the
same time, in a raid when the rebel legislature
was dispersed. He married, in Philips, JMaine,
September 17, 1871, Sarah Evelyn, daughter
of James and Sarah Tarbox, of Philips. She
was born in Philips in 1850, died Januar\' 20,
1887. Their children were three : Louisa Eve-
lyn, born January 3, 1872, in Philips, married
William A. Holman, of Rockland. Maine; Eda,
born August 18, 1874; Alice Winifred, born
September 2-, 1883, died .August \2, 1885. He
married (second) Mary Louise, daughter of
Isaac and Mary Hanson, of Calais, August 6,



STATE OF MAINE.



1775



1890, and three children resulted from this
union: Mary Phyllis, born December 7, i8gi ;
George Ashley, February 19, 1894; and
Guildford Payson, January 22, 1896. They
are all in the Calais public schools.



This family is not so nu-
HODGKINS merously represented in this
country as many others, but
it was early imported from England, and has
borne its full share in proportion to numbers,
in developing the civilization in the settlement
of the nation. It has been conspicuous in
Maine from an early period and sent out to
other states from this commonwealth many
worthy representatives.

(I) William Hodgkins, immigrant ances-
tor, was born before 1600 in England and
came to Plymouth, New Hampshire, among
the early settlers. He was admitted freeman
in 1634 and served as juryman in 1636 at
Plymouth. It is probable that his first wife
died in England. He married (second) De-
cember 21, 1638, Anne Hynes, at Plymouth,
who deposed March 2, 1641, that she had
lived at the house of Mr. Derby, father of
John and Richard Derby. In 1643, January
2, Mr. Hodgkins placed his daughter Sarah
with Thomas and Winfred Whitney to remain
until twenty years of age. He removed to
Ipswich, Massachusetts, about 164 1, and prob-
ably died there. His children born of the first
marriage were : William and Sarah. Those
of the second : A child born at Ipswich, No-
vember 30, 1647, ^"'J Samuel, 1654.

(II) William (2), son of William (i)
Hodgkins, was born 1622, in England, and
came with his father to Ipswich in 1641. He
resided near Little Neck in the town of Ips-
wich for over fifty years, beginning about
1641, and died December 26, 1693. He mar-
ried Grace, daughter of Osmond Dutch, of
Gloucester, Massachusetts, and they were the
parents of William, Samuel, Mary, Edward,
Hezekiah, Thomas, Christopher, John, Mar-
tha, Abigail and Hannah.

(III) Samuel, son of William (2) and
Grace (Dutch) Hodgkins, was born Novem-
ber 2, 1658, in Ipswich, and settled in Glouces-
ter before 1684. In 1694 he was appointed to
keep the ferry at Tyndall Cove, where he had
already built a house. By trade he was a shoe-
maker. His first wife, Hannah, was born
about 1660, died July 28, 1724, and he mar-
ried (second) May 3, 1725, Mary Stock-
bridge. His children were : Samuel, Han-
nah, John, Philip, William, Adam, Jedediah,.



Patience, Abigail, Mercy, David, Martha,
Anna, Jonathan and Experience.

(1\') Philip, fourth son of Samuel and Han-
nah Hodgkins, was born January 25, 1690, in
CSloucester, and removed to Falmoutli, Alaine,
in company with his brother Jedediah ; the
latter was married in 1722 at Gloucester to
Sarah Millet, of that town, and had born
there before his removal two daughters, Sarah
and Judith.

(V) Philip (2) and Shemuel, probably sons



Online LibraryGeorge Thomas LittleGenealogical and family history of the state of Maine; (Volume 3) → online text (page 25 of 128)