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    Volume 2 Issue 2 April 1997   


Research Update

Sorry about the delay in this newsletter, I have been recovering from a bout of annoying illnesses.

Not much new on Benjamin Wiser Sr. We located the personal and military records of Timothy Bedel Esquire who was the Colonel of the Company in which Benjamin Wiser served. Benjamin's pay commenced 6 April 1778 and he served for 11 months and 25 days. The company was raised for the defense of the frontiers on the Connecticut River. Unfortunately, there was nothing mentioned about Benjamin in the papers.

The majority of the early settlers of Haverhill, NH and surrounding towns were originally from the Haverhill, MA area. I have checked vital records of Haverhill, MA and surrounding towns, but find no mention of any Wisers. Benjamin remains a mystery. Anyone who finds any mention of early Wisers in the NH, Vermont, Maine and MA area would you please contact me.


James Babcock

Betsey Babcock, the daughter of James and Temperance (Decker) Babcock, married Samuel Wiser and is the ancestor of many Wisers. James was the son of James and Sarah (Sheldon) Babcock, and was born 22 Jun 1755 in Exeter, RI. James and family moved to New York, and James Jr. served in the Revolutionary War. His military record states that he was born in Rhode Island, age 20 years, trade, cordwainer [shoemaker], enlisted in Captain Denton's Company, 3rd Regiment of NY at Goshen, Orange County, New York, 7 Jul 1775.

On the 16 Feb 1777, at the First Presbyterian Church at Goshen, James married Temperance Decker. We presently do not know the parents of Temperance, though there were many Deckers in Orange County, all of Dutch descent.

There is a Temperance Decker who witnessed a will of Solomon Smith, on the 21st of June 1775 at Goshen. We do not know if this is our Temperance. If so, maybe she was somehow related to Solomon. Sometime between 1777 and 1784, James and Temperance moved to Pittsfield, MA. In 1784, James was assessed taxes for 3 acres of tillage, 97 acres of woodland, 1 horse and 1 cow. In the 1790 Census, James and Temperance lived in Pittsfield, l male over 21, 3 males under 21, and 4 females. James was involved in a number of land transactions in Pittsfield, on the 1 Jul 1795, Seth Lancton sold to James Babcock, cordwainer of Pittsfield for 47 pounds, Lot No. 6 and also land in Washington, MA, 52 acres and 3 rods.

In the 1800 Census of Pittsfield, James Babcock's family consisted of; males, 0-10, 1, 10-16, 1, 16-26, 1, over 45, 1; females, 0-10, 3, 10-16, 1, over 45, 1.

In the cemetery records of Lenox, MA, Sarah S. Babcock, daughter of James & Tempey Babcock, died 4 Sept 1805, age 24, also found in the Lenox Congregational Church records.

In the 1810 Census of Pittsfield, James' family consisted of; males, 0-10, 1, 10-16, 1, over 45, 1; females, 16-26, 3, over 45, 1.

On 14 May 1810, Elkanah and Rachael Watson of Pittsfield, sold land to James Babcock of Pittsfield. This land is described as Lot No. 45 in Fabius, Onondaga County, NY.

In the court records, James Babcock sued Elknaah Watson, 2 Sep 1811, because the title of the property which he purchased was not clear.

On 6 Apr 1812, James and Tempy Babcock of Fabius, sold land to Perequine P. Babcock, of Lowville, Lewis County, NY, Lot No. 45. Not sure if Perequine is related.

There are various land records of James in Fabius. The final record takes place, 9 May 1832, between Samuel and Betsey Wiser of Truxton, Asa and Susan Crandal of Truxton and Joshua and Amanda Davis of Lafayette on the first part and Orsemus Hills of Fabius on the second part. All of the first part give up their right to land previously owned by James Babcock, deceased. All were children of James and Temperance Babcock. Known children were:

1. Sarah S. Babcock, born about 1781, died 4 Sept 1805 and was buried in Lenox, MA.

2. Betsey Babock, was born about 1790, in Pittsfield, died 1839 in JoDaviess County, Illinois. She married first, Samuel Wiser and may have married 2) Theodore Wiser.

3. Susan Babcock, was born about 1791, in Pittsfield, married 1) Simeon Kingsley, he died, she married 2) Asa Crandall. She died 1861 and was buried in Cass County, Michigan.

4. Amanda Babcock, she was born before 1800, probably in Pittsfield, married Joshua Davis. She died before 1850, probably in Lafeyette, Onondaga County, New York.

There were obviously other children, some sons, but their names are not known. We have found no probate records for James which might show other children.

The cemetery where Sarah is buried is next to a beautiful Congregational Church in Lenox, which is called the "Church on the Hill" (see picture).

Unfortunately, we have not found more on James and Temperance (Decker) Babcock.

However, we do know that those who continue to show Samuel Wiser's wife Betsey as Elizabeth Crandall, do so in error, as there is no doubt, that she was the daughter of James and Temperance Babcock.

Anyone finding more on this family, please contact me.


The Future

There continues to be progress made on compiling the descendants of Benjamin Wiser Jr. Hopefully, by the end of 1997, we will have compiled enough information to publish. After Benjamin Wiser Jr., we will continue to work on the descendants of each of his other brothers and sisters.

Anything which you might find in your research, please send on to me.

My address: 6 Baton Rouge, Roswell, NM 88201, or Email at: .

Also, if you are willing to do research, please let me know, because I have a number of projects which can be worked on.

I appreciate all the help and research that Debbie Wilson has done for me in New Hampshire.

If you have suggestions on how this newsletter can be improved, please let me know. I would be pleased with any input.


Missing Children

There are a number of children of Benjamin Wiser Jr. (or at least I think they are children), who seem to have vanished;

1. Mary Wiser, who married Deacon Paul Page, 14 Oct 1827 in Danville, Caledonia, Vermont.

2. Polly Wiser, who married Brigham Woods, 10 Jan 1825 in Haverhill, Grafton, NH.

3. Levi Wiser, in the 1830 Census of Littleton, Grafton, NH.

4. Joseph Wiser, who changed his name to George Wise, 13 Jul 1855 in Concord, Merrimack, NH.

5. Thomas Jefferson Wiser, who enlisted 9 Apr 1847 in Lisbon, Grafton, NH, Capt. Daniel Batchelder's Company.

5. Marian W. Wiser, who appears to have married 1) Clark Benjamin Beede, 8 Sep 1844 in Corinth, Orange, VT; and 2) William P. Hook, 6 Jul 1850 in Concord, Merrimack, NH.

Of course, some of the above may not have been the children of Benjamin Wiser Jr., but I do believe they are all part of our family.

For the rest of his children, we have had much success.

Any ideas on how our Wisers ended up in New Hampshire, or where they originated, please let me know.


-Ron Wiser