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Ancestry of Diane Marie Hitchcock


By Diane Hitchcock-Owens

There were the Scots
Who kept the Sabbath
And everything else they
could lay their hands on

Then there were the Welsh
Who prayed on their knees
And their neighbors

Thirdly, there were the Irish
Who never knew what they wanted
But were willing to fight for it anyway.

Lastly, there were the English
Who considered themselves a self-made nation
Thus, relieving the Almighty of a dreadful responsibility.


My branch of the Hitchcocks descends from Mathias Hitchcock and his wife Elizabeth Nichols through their son John. Mathias Hitchcock was among Rev. John Davenport’s Congregation in London. He lived in the neighborhood of Coleman Street in London. Mathias sailed first with Sir Richard Saltonstall, a strong supporter of the church, in 1635 on the ship SUSAN & ELLEN. Mathias apparently returned to England as there is another record of Mathias sailing on the ship HECTOR that brought John Davenport's party to America in 1637 arriving at Boston, Massachusetts. Among the passengers on the HECTOR were several other families who married into the Hitchcock family later on.

Subsequent generations of the Hitchcock family migrated up the Connecticut River Valley and eventually settled western New York until my grandfather, Hubert Heaton Hitchcock left Syracuse for Utah in 1911.

Mathias's first property was in Watertown, Massachusetts,where he received 23 acres in the "Great Dividends." He then moved south, as much of the group moved away either into Long Island, New York, area or into Connecticut.

In 1639 Mathias is listed among the signers of the "foundamental agreement" of New Haven, Connecticut. He was among five purchasers of the "South End Neck" where he and his family continued to live until after 1651. It is not known how or when Mathias met Elizabeth Nichols but they did come to America together in 1635. I suspect they were part of the St. Stephens congregation on Coleman Street in London and certainly sympathizers to the Puritan movement if not active members.

Elizabeth and Mathias married before 1643 as Mathias is listed with three persons in his family in the New Haven town

The Nichols family were ship builders and sponsored emigrants to the New World. Elizabeth's nephews family settled Rhode Island records.

For more on the Nichols family go to:

Prescott Farm

Mathias and Elizabeth Hitchcock’s son, John Hitchcock, married Abigail Merriman. Abigail was the daughter of Nathaniel Merriman and Joan or Abigail Olney. Nathaniel was a cooper from London who came to America on the ship the WHALE. He was an
indentured servant in 1649. The Merriman family originated in Oxford, England.

John and Abigail moved to Cheshire, Connecticut about 1676.

The Hitchcock migration westward began when John and Abigail Hitchcock moved up the Connecticut River and settled in Wallingford, Connecticut. Their son, John Hitchcock, Jr., married Elizabeth Chatterton, daughter of William and Mary (Clark) Chatterton. T he Chattertons immigrated to America in the
1630’s and resided in Cheshire, Connecticut.

There is mention among some researchers John and Elizabeth resided in Canada for some time. John and Elizabeth’s son Amos Hitchcock, married Sybil Tuttle, daughter of Moses Tuttle and Sybil Thomas. Amos served in the Revolutionary War.

The Tuttle family descends from William Tuttle who married Elizabeth Mathews. They immigrated on the ship the Planter in 1635. William had his hands full with his children. His daughter, Elizabeth, was accused of adultery. Another daughter Mercy killed her seventeen-year-old son. His son Benjamin killed his sister, Sarah. He was executed. Aaron Burr is also a descendant of William Tuttle.

For more on Tuttle family go to:

What Is It with Those Tuttles?

The Dewey family immigrated to America from Sandwich, England, and settled at Windsor, Connecticut, before moving to western Massachusetts where Paul’s father, Israel Dewey, was one of the prominent settlers. He established a lumber mill business that led to a successful business.

Betsy was widowed in 1803. She remarried Pierce and moved to Illinois. Her son John Cortland Hitchcock remained in New York where he married Demaris Graves. They resided in Otisco, New York. Demaris was the daughter of Lucius and Clarissa (Hickox) Graves.

The Graves family descends from Thomas Graves who was a respected engineer. His services were contracted by the New England Company to help build the community in the New World. He apparently had traveled extensively throughout Europe prior to immigrating to America. Thomas was from Gravesend, co. Kent, England, and came to America with Gov. Endicott's Company on the GEORGE BONAVENTURE, which arrived in Salem, Massachusetts in 1629.

Thomas Graves was a member of the Council, on the committee to lay out the town of Woburn, Massachusetts, and one of the first town officers of Woburn. His wife, Sarah Whiting, and their five grown children and two servants came with him. The family moved to New Haven, Connecticut, first, then Hartford. He was one of the founders of Hadley, Massachusetts in 1645. He was well past his seventy-sixth birthday at this point.

The Hickox family traces back to William Hickox who emigrated from Stratford-on-Avon, England. “Wild Bill Hickox” is among his descendants.

John Cortland and Demaris Hitchcock’s son James Bostwick Hitchcock, married Katherine Heaton of Canton, New York. Katherine was the daughter of Elhanan Winchester Heaton and Mary Eliza Boyden.

The Heatons were a prosperous western New York family having settled there in the early 1800’s.The family was among the first settlers of Swanzey, New Hampshire. The first immigrant was Nathaniel Heaton who married Elizabeth Philips in London,1622. They immigrated to Boston, Massachusetts, in the 1630’s. From Boston the family moved westward. Their son, James, married Eleoni Hawes. They resided at Wrentham, Massachusetts.

Their son, James Heaton, married Abigail Rice. James and Abigail moved to Swanzey, New Hampshire, where they were among the early settlers. The area was hard to settle due to harsh winters and Indian conflicts. James died at the age of thirty-four. Abigail was left with four young children under the age of ten years. She returned to her parents, Moses and Sarah (King) Rice, who were residing in Charlemont, Massachusetts. Her father was killed two years later by Indians. Abigail and her mother were left to attend to the farm and family. Her son, James, returned to Swanzey, to carry out his father’s dream of settling that area.

From Swanzey, New Hampshire, the Heaton family moved to Shilburne, Massachusetts. James Heaton served two terms in the Revolutionary War, serving at the Battle of Ticondergoga, 1777. James and his wife, Susannah Grimes, were in Buckland, Massachusetts in 1784 before moving to Waitsfield in 1793. In 1800 the family moved to western New York.

Susannah was the daughter of William Grimes who immigrated from England. It was “admiringly noted that she could walk upstairs, carrying a sixty pound tub of butter under each arm, a
valuable accomplishment in a new country.”

James and Susannah's son, John Heaton, became a successful farmer in Canton, New York. He was also known for his outspokenness on being a Democrat in a predominantly Republican community.

The family continued to live on the farm for over 100 yrs. After John died his brother, Elhanen Winchester Heaton, managed the farm. The farm eventually became part of what is now known as Heaton Hill.

Another descendant, Allen James Treadway, grandson of James and Susannah Heaton, became a US senator and owner of the
Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.

For more stories related to the Heaton family go to:

The Story of Ruth Catlin

James and Katherine Hitchcock’s son, Hubert Heaton Hitchcock, left New York in 1911 to go west to work as a civil engineer in the building of the railroads. He met his wife, Marie Antoinette West, in Salt Lake City.

The West family traces back to Harford/Baltimore county, Maryland, where the first progenitor, Robert West, resided on property that is now where the Mason-Dixon line runs.

Robert West came to America from England at the age of eight years. He arrived at Baltimore, Maryland, and was among the first settlers along the Susquehanna and Hundred Run Rivers. This area eventually became Harford County. There is a well-known ford on the Susquehanna River where a ferry was located at Bald Friar. This is on what was Robert West’s “plantation” known as Maiden’s Mount. In the early 1700’s there was a dispute between Maryland and Pennsylvania over the boundary line. Minutes of the Provincial Council of Pennsylvania record on August 18, 1723, Governor Reith of Pennsylvania said, “I intend to be upon the plantation of Robert West called Maiden’s Mount in Baltimore County, commonly known as Bald Friar on Monday, September 9, in order to take observations.” Whether the meeting took place is not known. This dividing line was later known as the Mason and Dixon Line.

Robert’s son Jonathan West married Eleanor Allender. The Allender is also an early name in Harford County. Their son, James Benjamin West moved to South Carolina where he married Sarah Brashear.

Sarah's parents are not known but there is good speculation she was the daughter of William Brashear. A William Basher/Brashier was in Baltimore County, Maryland, in 1699 when he was taxed on property on the north side of Gunpowder Hundred River. It is likely these people moved to the Carolinas together. It may have been through the influence of the Quakers and Methodists that inspired them to move southward.

The Brashear family was among the French Huguenots who were persecuted by the Catholic Church in France. The Brashear family joined the migration to America in the 1700’s and settled in the mid-Atlantic region of Maryland and southward into the Carolinas.

The West family was in South Carolina where Isaac West, son of James Benjamin and Sarah (Brashear) West was born in Greenville County. Issac went to Kentucky where he married Patsey Meeks whose family also came from South Carolina. Patsey was the daughter of Priddy Meeks. Priddy and his sister, Sarah Meeks and her husband, Paul Meachum were involved in transporting and freeing slaves from the Carolinas to Indiana in the early 1800’s.

The Meeks family traces back to William Meeks of co. Westmoreland, England, who immigrated to Hanover County,Virginia. The family is recorded on the tax list at Middle Plantation , Virginia in 1646.8 Pride Meeks, son of William and Molly (Nolan) Meeks, married Elizabeth Denny.

The Denny family migrated from Albemarle County, Virginia. Samuel Denny, the first immigrant migrated to Surry County, North Carolina, where he settled on Hill Farm on Arrat River at the mouth of Pilot Creek. He married Elizabeth Sudderth by whom he had fourteen children one of which was Elizabeth. After his wife died Samuel apparently went to Kentucky and Ohio with his
family when he was quite old as he is buried in Gallia County, Ohio.

Patsey Meeks-West was widowed after two years of marriage and left with an infant son, William Shelton West. She remarried two times, only to again be widowed and left with 12 stepchildren and 4 of her own. She went to Shawneetown, Illinois, and then on
to Missouri where she spent her remaining years as a recluse on her son’s property in Westville, Chariton County, Missouri.

William Shelton West went to Missouri where he was practicing medicine under Dr. Posey of Shawneetown. There he married Lucretia McGuire, daughter of William McGuire, a state senator of Missouri. William McGuire’s family came from Virginia and migrated to Missouri through Kentucky. His great grandfather, James McGuire was an Indian spy and was killed at the Battle of Blue Licks in Kentucky.

William and Lucretia West’s son, Silas Wright West, was a man of adventure. At the age of sixteen he left Missouri in the middle of the night after witnessing a murder in a late night fight in the bunk house where he was sleeping and headed for Montana with a cattle run. He then went to Utah where he fell in love with the country in the southern part of the state. He became a successful businessman in mercantiling, sheep raising, and iron prospecting. He made and lost a couple of fortunes. One of his adventures took him to Mexico where he escaped with barely his life, leaving his money with a partner who was never found. Another adventure took him to the Philippines and he made plans to take his family to Hawaii. His wife had other plans. So he returned to Utah and eventually moved the family to San Francisco about the time of the earthquake in hopes of selling bricks to help build the city following the devastation. That did not work out too successfully due to the competition.

Silas married Marie Antoinette Haight, daughter of Isaac Chauncy and Eliza Ann (Price) Haight. Isaac was the first Stake President for the LDS at Cedar City, Utah. He had been among Joseph Smith’s first converts in Dutchess County, New York. He found himself in a bit of trouble when following Brigham Young’s orders to attack a wagon train of “Gentiles” coming through his territory backfired on him. He was wanted by the United States government for his involvement in the murder of 150 women and children. Having been abandoned by the LDS Church he went to Arizona Territory where he died in exile.

Isaac’s wife, Eliza Ann Price, was from London, England, where she met her future husband at a “revival” meeting where Isaac was recruiting for the LDS Church. He proposed to her and brought her to America via New Orleans. It was not until she was enroute on a wagon train to Salt Lake City when she learned he had other wives in America. Her daughter’s memoirs state she was too embarrassed to tell her family in England she had been “hoodwinked” so she remained with Isaac and raised a family of ten children.

Silas and Marie Antoinette West’s daughter, Marie Antoinette, met Hubert Heaton Hitchcock when he came to Salt Lake City to help build the railroads as a civil engineer. Hubert alter went to work for Anaconda Copper Company which took him to Chiquiquamata, Chili, where they lived a few years. Just prior to the Stock Market Crash in 1929 they returned to the states and settled in San Francisco where they raised their family of four children. All four of their children served in WWII. Their oldest served with the Marines as a bomb detonator. He was listed as dead after Nagazaki, Japan, was bombed. It was later discovered he was not killed. This event had a profound impact on Hubert. His other sons served in the Merchant Marines in the south Pacific, another son, my father, served in the Air Force with the Flying Tigers in China,and their daughter served in the Navy. She was based in San Francisco.

My father, James West Hitchcock, met my mother Carol Ann Hansell, when he was thirteen years old. They lived on the same street and grew up together going to the same schools and college in San Francisco. He also attended University of Utah before WWII broke out and he joined the Army Air Corps.

Following the war he went to work for his uncle who was a building contractor in the San Francisco area, mainly building housing, which was in great demand following the war. Being in the reserves he was recalled when the Korean War broke out and sent to Greenland for a year. Following the Korean War he decided to remain in the Air Force and become a career officer, attaining the rank of Lt. Colonel. He retired in 1969. He served in a missile squadron during the Cuban Missile Crisis and later flew bombers out of Guam to Viet Nam. He and his wife returned to the San Francisco area where they lived until 1991 when his wife’s health became more than he could manage and they moved to Denver, Colorado, to be near their oldest daughter. Carol died in 1993.
Jim remained in Colorado a few more years and then moved to Simi Valley to live with his son where he presently lives. For more on this family go to:

Home Page of Diane Hitchcock-Owens


For more on my lines go to the following sites.

New England Ancestors

Ancestry of Emily Ann Dean

Haight Family

Silas Wright West (1846-1918)

Ancestors of Paul Robert Owens

Carothers Family of Swissvale, Pennsylvania

The Grand Dame

Ancestry of Lillian Gilkey




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