William Hodges, immigrant ancestor, was born doubtless in England, date unknown. He appears in this country, first in Salem, Mass., where he was appointed on the jury at the court held at Salem, March 27, 1638. He went from Salem to Taunton, Mass., soon after the latter town was purchased by the proprietors and is on the second list of early settlers made out by the town clerk. His name first appears on the town records in August, 1643, in the list of men at Taunton, between the ages of sixteen and sixty, able to bear arms. On March 24, 1643-44, the town voted "that a sufficient carte-way be made from the houses into the woods behind the ground of William Hodges, William Evans and Aaron Knapp, where it is most convenient." He was propounded freeman June 6, 1649, and admitted freeman June 5, 1651. On the last date he was also appointed constable at Taunton. He was on the grand jury June 2, 1653, at Plymouth Court. He was one of the original stockholders of the first Taunton Iron Works, and subscribed twenty pounds for a whole share. He seems to have held considerable property, and there is still on file at Plymouth an inventory of his goods.
He married Mary, daughter of Henry Andrews, one of the original purchasers of Taunton, in 1637. Henry Andrews was one of the first seven freemen of the town, one of the first two deputies to the general court in 1639, deputy also in 1643-44-47-49; one of the first stockholders of the Taunton Iron Works, and in other ways one of the most prominent men of the town. He died in 1653. Mary Andrews was born about 1628, died after 1700. After the death of William Hodges, her first husband, April 2, 1654, she married (second) Peter Pitts, of Taunton. The latter died 1692 or 1693.
Children, born in Taunton:
1. John, born in 1650, in Taunton, died in the same town between May 27, and Oct. 1, 1719. He was bequeathed by his grandfather, Henry Andrews, a certain dwelling house and garden, with land belonging to it, situated in Taunton. He never made this place his home, but lived a short distance west of Taunton Green, on the old Providence road. The house in which he lived was torn down by his son William, and a new one built on the same site as early as 1730. This house and lot have been owned and occupied by his descendants until the preset time . He was one of the original purchasers of Taunton South Purchase (Dighton) bought of King Philip, Nov. 26, 1672. He was on a coroner's jury at Plymouth court, Sept. 20, 1672. He was appointed constable of Taunton, June 3, 1684, and Jan. 5, 1709-10, he gave an acre of land, as an inducement to settle, to the first minister who should settle in Taunton North Purchase (Norton).
He married, 1672, Elizabeth, daughter of George and Susannah (Street) Macey, of Taunton. She died Jan. 25, 1718-19, at Norton, Mass. Her father was one of the original purchasers of Taunton. He was enrolled in the military company there in 1643, and rose through the various grades of those appointed to "order town affairs" in 1648-50-58, and was town surveyor in 1649-55-68, and constable in 1650. He was selectman from 1671 to 1686 inclusive; deputy to the general court from 1672 to 1677 and 1686; and was a magistrate for the county of Plymouth in 1690. He was also on the committee appointed to take invoice of the liquors, powder, shot and lead brought into the town, and was often called upon to take inventories, settle estates, bound lands, etc.
His wife Susannah was a daughter of Rev. Nicholas Street of Taunton. The will of John Hodges was dated May 27, 1719, proved Oct. 1, 1719.
Children, born in Taunton:
1. John, born April 5, 1673.
2. Nathaniel, April 2, 1675.
3. Samuel, May 20, 1678.
4. William, June 6, 1682.
5. George, Nov. 27, 1685.
6. Ebenezer, March 13, 1687-88, died young.
7. Nathan, Oct. 23, 1690.
(III) William (2), son of John Hodges, was born June 6, 1682, in Taunton. He first settled in Taunton North Purchase (Norton), and was among the petitioners, 1707 to 1709, for having the North Purchase set off as a separate church precinct. He built his house near what was then a common, used for many years as a burying ground and training field, not far from the principal highway from Attleborough to Bridgewater. He took up land which was claimed to be a part of the common. The town authorities made protests against this action and offered other land in exchange, but the exchange was not effected until 1728.
After his father's death he removed to Taunton and occupied the fomer's homestead until 1730, when he bulit a new house on the same site. He was a man of inlfuence in Taunton, and captain of the Third Military Company of that town. In 1735 he was one of the founders of the town of New Taunton on the Connecticut, afterwards Westminster, Vermont.
He married (first) Feb. 8, 1710-11, at Taunton, Hannah, daughter of Joseph and Mary (Leonard) Tisdale of Taunton. She was born 1688, died March 7, 1715-16.
He married (second) March 2, 1719-20, at Scituate, Mss., Mary, daughter of Joseph and Abigail (Allen) Clapp. She was born March 6, 1696-97. at Scituate, died April 10, 1756, at Woodstock, Conn., while visiting her daughter. He died June 23, 1766, at Taunton.
1. George, mentioned below.
2. Abigail, born May 4, 1713, at Norton.
3. Job, 1721, at Taunton.
4. Elijah, 1724 or 1725, at Taunton.
5. Abijah, 1728 at Taunton.
6. Mary, 1731 or 1732 at Taunton.
(IV) George, son of William (2) Hodges, was born 1711 or 1712, in Taunton or Norton, died 1786. He married, July 27, 1737, at Taunton, Susannah, daughter of Morgan and Susannah (Willis) Cobb. Six month after his marriage, Feb. 7, 1738-39, his house in Norton was burned, the first destruction of a house in that town of which there is any record. It was doubtless at this time that he moved into his father's house at the east end of the Norton Common Burying Ground, where he lived for a number of years. In 1749 and 1750 he kept a public house. In 1753 he bought one of the pews in the new meeting house. In April 1754, he bought of his cousin, Seth Hodges, sixty acres of land with a dwelling house and other buildings, in Woodstock, Conn., and at some date later than Aug. 11, 1754, he took his family there.
He served in the French and Indian war, from March 27 to Dec. 1, 1760, in Captain Willard's regiment. It is supposed that both he and his wife were buried in the old graveyard at South Warren, Mass.
1. George, born June 26, 1739, in Norton.
2. Silas, Feb. 11, 1741-42, mentioned below.
3. Susannah, 1744 or 1745, in Norton.
4. Elkanah, May 19, 1747, in Norton.
5. Daniel, April 17, 1754, in Norton.
6. Leonard, March 25, 1759, in Woodstock.
(V) Dr. Silas Hodges, son of George Hodges, was born Feb. 11, 1741-42, in Norton. He practiced medicine for a number of years at Woodstock, and afterwards at Dunbarton, New Hampshire, where he was living ta the beginning of the revolution. He served as surgeon in the Continental army, and was some time in personal attendacne on General Washington, who instrusted him with important commissions, and admitted him to a friendly, social relationship.
His granddaughter, Mrs. Emma F. Gillette, remembers accounts of his attending the receptions of Lady Washington, and at times, as her partner, leading the minuet. The sleeve buttons and shirt stud which he wore while surgeon on Washington's staff were presented to the Antiquarian Museum at Rutland, Vermont.
He appears to have had a semi-official connection with some of the New England state governments, and his name occurs frequently in the resolves of the general court of Massachusetts and in other public documents. After the war he practiced medicine in Concord, Mass. About 1784 he moved to Clarendon, Vermont, where he purchased land in the intervals of Otter Creek and resided until his death in a house which stood west of the junction of the Middleton road with the road from Manchester to Rutland. He also bought numerous tracts of land in Addison, Chittendon and Frankin counties. The care of these estates and a mercantile business made it necessary for him to give up his medical practice. He was an able business man, and a financier of foresight and prudence. In politics he was an ardent Federalist and a devoted adherent of President Washington, and as such was charged by his opponents with tendencies toward a monarchy. He held a comspicious position in society and had a large circle of acquaintances.
He married (first) June 3, 1761, in Woodstock, Mary, daughter of Daniel and Abigail Bacon, born March 24, 1744, in Woodstock, died Nov. 19, 1765, in the same place. He married (second) 1767, in Sturbridge, Mass., Rachel, daughter of Samuel and Mary Freeman, born Sept. 9, 1748, in Sturbridge, died between 1772 and 1776. he married (third) 1778, in Concord, Mary, daughter of Henry and Elizabeth (Mirick) Gould, born Jan. 17, 1760, in Concord, died July 19, 1843, in Clarendon. He died Jan. 9, 1804, in Clarendon.
He was in Boston when attacked by his last illness, but was carried to his home before he died. Soon after his death his widow built the house near the bridge across Otter creek, which descended to her children and grandchildren.
Children of first wife:
1. Anna, born Jan. 17, 1762, in Woodstock.
2. Mary, Dec. 7, 1763, in Woodstock.
Children of second wife:
3. Drusus, born March 12, 1768, in Woodstock.
4. Rachel Freeman, July 2, 1771, in Sturbridge.
Children of third wife:
5. Henry, born July 30, 1779, in Concord.
6. Susan, 1783, in Concord.
7. Silas Wyllys, Jan. 25, 1786, in Clarenden.
8. George Tisdale, July 4, 1788, in Clarenden.
9. Hannibal, March 20, 1790, in Clarenden.
10. Sophia, Dec. 19, 1794, in Clarenden.
11. Hyman, 1796.
(VI) Hyman, son of Dr. Silas Hodges, was born 1796, died 1888. He was a farmer, and fought in the battle of Plattsburgh. He married _____ Ryan.
1. Henry R., further mentioned below.
3. Florence Myers.
(VII) Henry R., son of Hyman Hodges, was born in 1825, in Clinton county, New York, in what is now Chazy, ten miles north of Plattsburgh. He received a common school education, and has always been a farmer and lived in his native town. In politics he is a Republican, and in religion a Methodist.
He married Sarah Howes, born in Beekmantown, Clinton county, 1850, died 1875.
1. Chester C.
2. Willis Henry, mentioned below.
3. Lawrence Myers, deceased.
4. Rollin J.
(VIII) Willis Henry, son of Henry R. Hodges, was born in West Chazy, Clinton county, New York, Jan. 20, 1857. He was educated in the town schools and in the Massena high school. He then became a clerk in Plattsburgh, and in 1876 came to Massena, where he went into the drug store of Drs. McFadden and Anderson as a clerk for a time. In 1883 he went to Camden, N.Y., and went into the drug and grocery business for himself. He remained there nine years, and returned to Massena in 1892. At that time he went into the dry goods business and has continued in that line since. He was a director in the First National Bank in Massena, and served as vice-president and manager. He was instrumental in starting the public library and is on the board of trustees. He is serving on the board of education, served as president, and is chief of the fire department. . He is a member of Independent Order of Odd Fellows of Messena, and in religion a Congregationalist.
He married (first) in 1880, Nellie, daughter of Festus Wright, of Messena. She died June 8, 1883, and he married (second) Nellie Hynes.
Eleanor Howe Hodges, born July, 1891, now in Emerson College, Boston.
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