In my quest to find out more about my patriot ancestor, Elisha Freeman, I revisited Robert R. Freeman’s Freeman Families of New England in the 17th and 18th Centuries to look up references. I found rather interesting references, a family record called “Freeman-Hedges, Vermont”, published in the American Genealogist and seems to be the only known record of my fourth great-grandfather’s birth, David Freeman, born 9 May 1793 in Norwich, VT.
Before Elisha Freeman had children in Norwich, he lived across the river in Hanover, New Hampshire. Another reference made to him was in Gilman Dubois Frost’s Genealogical Records of Hanover, New Hampshire. Frost noted that he paid the Hanover Poll Tax in 1773. It referenced his marriage to Lucy Bartlett in the Hanover Town Records which I obtained a photocopy of. Frost thinks Lucy Bartlett may have been the sister of Nathaniel Bartlett, who married Susanna Clark of Canaan, and the aunt of Nathaniel Bartlett, who married Lucy Bridgman in 1806.
I spent a lot of time in the Hanover Town Records, researching the Freemans. NEHGS also had an index to the NH town records. He was referenced seven times. He helped build the first roads in Hanover.5 On 2 Mar 1773, Elisha Freeman was elected fence viewer and constable.6 8 Mar 1774, he was elected constable of the town and was paid a pound for “warning out” and “conveying” three people to Lebanon, NH.7 In New England, warning out a person from the town meant they told them to leave because the town did not want to add on to their burden and provide for someone who wasn’t economically viable. Talking to the experts, I learned about early New England townships when I asked them to interpret town records.
Searching more through the town records, I was able to find maps of the early surveys of Hanover, New Hampshire. It had a map of all the divided lots in Hanover, showing who lived on each lot. I also found survey descriptions of each of the original Freeman grantee’s land.
Fig 1. Geographic Boundaries of Hanover, Town Records, 1:6.
Fig 2. Proprietor’s Plots of Land, Hanover Town Records, 1:262-63.
Here is an example of the surveyor’s descriptions:
Fig 3. Boundary description of plot granted to Hanover proprietor Silvanus Freeman
1Donald Lines Jacobus, “Freeman-Hedges, Vermont,” The American Genealogist 10 (1933): 127, cited in Robert R. Freeman, Freeman Families of New England in the 17th and 18th Centuries, (Bowie, Maryland: Heritage Books Inc., 2005), hereafter cited as Freeman Genealogy).
2 Gilman Dubois Frost, Microfilm Edition of Dr. Gilman Frost’s Genealogical Records of Hanover, New Hampshire, (Hanover, New Hampshire: Dartmouth College Library, 1972), (hereafter cited as Gilman Frost, Genealogical Records of Hanover, New Hampshire).
3 Genealogical Society of Utah, State of New Hampshire Town Records (Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1950), Town Records of Hanover, New Hampshire Volume 1, page 36, (hereafter cited as Hanover Town Records).
5 Hanover Town Records 1:57; Hanover Town Records 1:106; Hanover Town Records 1:108.
6 Hanover Town Records.
7 Hanover Town Records, 1:287-88.
Copyright (c) 2015 by Jake Fletcher