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Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Cole Family heads north

Jonathan Cole arrived in what was then Nova Scotia with his 2nd wife Abigail Martin Estabrooks Cole, his two sons from his first marriage (who were not only step-sons to Abigail but half-nephews as well), his three step children from Abigail’s first marriage to William Estabrooks (who were also his half nieces and nephew by way of his first marriage) and the three children that had been born to them in RI. The children were James and Edward Cole (1st marriage), Elizabeth, Grizzell and William Estabrooks, Ambrose, Patience and Martin Cole (2nd marriage). Jonathan Cole’s name appears on lists as early as 1763 and then on lists for Sackville in 1766.
Jonathan and Abigail Martin Estabrooks Cole:
James Cole
Edward Cole
Elizabeth Esatabrooks
Grizzell Estabrooks
William Estabrooks
Ambrose Cole
Patience Cole
Martin Cole
Part of the agreement in receiving shares of land was to develop the acreage into arable land suitable for farming, dike the salt marshes wherever possible to make better use of the land and to build structures for habitation and keeping domestic animals. The salt marshes provided ample quantities of hay for livestock, there were large forests for wood to build homes and barns, but the work was back breaking daily intensive labor.  There were no roads, so they needed to be built. This became a community effort so when the men weren’t working on clearing, plowing or planting the land, they were doing their share to help build roads. In many ways Nova Scotia was an extension of New England since so many colonists made the move to settle there. Jonathan Eddy was another colonist from MA who settled in NS. It’s possible he was related to Jonathan’s family, through his grandmother Hannah Eddy, but there were a couple of Eddy families amongst the colonists and it hasn’t been determined exactly which family Jonathan Eddy belonged to.
While Jonathan and Abigail Cole were adding two more children to their family, Ebenezer and Jonathan, Eddy was determined to take Fort Cumberland away from the British. He failed to get the backing from the colonies that he had hoped for, but still besieged the Fort, in 1776, in an attempt to take control. Eddy was not successful in this. Jonathan Cole’s oldest two boys, James and Edward were members of Eddy’s Rebellion. They would have been in their early 20’s and apparently their loyalties were with the colonists. It is also believed that Ambrose Cole, the eldest child of the 2nd marriage also joined Eddy’s rebels. Eventually it was learned through Eddy’s Return that Edward had been killed in a skirmish.  With James, Edward and probably Ambrose gone off to fight with the colonists, the Cole family was left with Patience, Martin, Ebenezer and Jonathan, plus the three Estabrooks children. Of the four remaining Cole children, nothing has been found about the son, Jonathan, and it is presumed he may have died young.
Jonathan continued to live until 1814 but his will does not reflect any generosity to James, Ambrose or Ebenezer. Each was given 5 shillings. This seems to be a token inheritance, perhaps meant more as an insult to sons who did not remain loyal to the Crown. There seems to be no other records for James and Ambrose in either NS or NB but their names in his will at least suggest they were both still alive. Then, as so often happens, while looking for something else, I stumbled across a history of Crawford OH, which included some biographies. It seems that our James Cole was the father of a Mrs. Reuben McDonald (aka Matilda Cole). Reuben received quite a write-up which ended with the following:
            James Cole, the father of Mrs. Reuben McDonald, was a native of Nova Scotia, born Nov. 13, 1752, of wealthy parentage. At the commencement of the American Revolution, he joined a company of Nova Scotia refugees and served in the Continental army throughout the war, for which he was disinherited; was at Valley Forge with Washington, afterward taken prisoner and incarcerated in a British prison ship in Boston Harbor,    where he was badly wounded in one of his limbs, by the explosion of a shell, which crippled him for life. After the war closed, he was released and received pay for his services in Continental money, not worth a—continental—and hobbled on his crutch to Cheshire, Western Mass., where he hired out to a wealthy farmer, named Jesse Mason, working for him nearly a year, and in the meantime marrying his daughter Elizabeth. They removed to Vermont, came back to Massachusetts, and afterward removed to Niagara Co., N. Y., where he died in November, 1826, at the age of 74 years.
History of Crawford Co. OH   P.788-789
Although it claims that he was b. in RI, which is incorrect, it does support the theory that he was disinherited. James and Ambrose, sons of Jonathan, were not mentioned after Jonathan’s will of 1814. Some references call Ambrose a Capt. In February 18, 1801 the Sixth Congress awarded to Ambrose Cole and James Cole, among others, three hundred and twenty acres each (in Ohio) for their participation as "Nova Scotia Refugee's." Ebenezer would have been too young to be one of Eddy’s rebels and did not appear on Eddy’s or Congress’s lists. Yet it still seems as though he did not have his father’s favor.  We may never know the reason Ebenezer inherited only 5 shillings while other family members received considerably more. Ebenezer continued to live near his father and raised a fairly large family but he had moved closer to the Bay of Fundy and occupied land that became known as Cole’s Point, in Dorchester, New Brunswick. Ebenezer is my GGG grandfather and his line will continue in the next blog. To sum up what is known about all his siblings, I have the following information:
James Cole, b. 1751, Scituate RI, d. Nov 26 1828, Wilson, Niagara Co., NY m. Elizabeth Mason c. 1780.  Land deed shows purchase of 16 acres from David Alverson on Lot #70B on Nov. 26, 1786 in Sackville. Since James did not appear to return to NB to live, this may have just been a land speculation.  
James and Elizabeth had children:
Mason, b. Dec 28 1782, Ira, Rutland Co., VT
Aaron, b. Feb 9 1787, Ira, Rutland Co., VT
James, Jul 29 1788, VT
Aaron I. b. Feb 9 1789, Ira, Rutland Co., VT
Matilda, b. Jan 28, 1803, d. Dec. 19 1887, Portage OH
It’s possible there were more children but I’ve not been able to locate them. I can’t find a death date for Elizabeth but apparently she died after 1803.  Another research note says that James was living in Westfield, Washington Co., NY in 1792 when he sold his land in Ira VT. . I have a research note that says James m. Jerusha Alverson, d/o David and had two children, Elizabeth  b. 1807 and Jerusha b. 1810. It’s claimed that the Alverson family moved to Poughkeepsie NY and then David returned to RI.  There is a David Alverson living in Smithfield RI in 1820. Unfortunately, I have no verification of the marriage to Jerusha. There is a claim that she died in Monson MA in 1863. James would have been 20 years older than her, she may have gone to live with one of her children.
Ambrose Cole, b. Jul 14 1756 in Warren RI, d. Oct 27 1828 in Greenfield, Saratoga Co., NY. He married Althea Martin, his first cousin. She was the daughter of his mother’s brother, Nathaniel Martin. I have found two sons for this couple, Jonathan C, Cole and Edward Cole, b. 1788 in RI, d. Oct 12 1851. He m. Susannah Griffin and they had ten children. The other son was Edward Cole, who married Chloe Griffin, sister of Susannah. They had 13 children : Henry, Jonathan, Althea, Edward, James, Philmena, Martin, Elizabeth, Sarah, Calvin, Phoebe, Polly and Ambrose. This Edward, d. Aug 28 1839 in Erie, NY.
Patience Cole, Oct 20 1759 in Warren RI, m. Samuel Halliday of Cobequid NS
Martin Cole b. Jan 17 1562 in Warren RI m. Zylpha Alverson, d/o David Alverson
Elizabeth Estabrooks, unmarried
Grizzell Estabrooks m. Jeremiah Alverson
William Estabrooks, m. Miriam Thornton
Martine and Zylpha Cole will appear again in the next blog, which will concentrate mostly on Ebenezer and his numerous progeny.
The Chignecto Isthmus and its First Settlers, Howard Trueman, 1902
History of Sackville New Brunswick, Dr. William Cochran Milner, 1934


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  2. Very interesting! I found your blog after doing a Google search for my great-great-grandfather Asa Read. I am just digging in to our family genealogy and history in the Maritime Provinces. My grandmother was a Ward from Sackville, NB. Family names Read and Ward are of most interest. Do you have suggestions for sources?