The Hissem-Montague Family
The descent of the Sayre family is well known and documented in "Sayre Family, Lineage of Thomas Sayre a Founder of Southampton," by Theodore M. Banta and published in 1901. There is evidence that the Sayre's had lived in Hinwich, Bedfordshire, England since as early as 1200. See also Sayre Family History.(12) Thomas Sayre (1474)
He was born in about 1474 in Hinwich, Podington, Bedfordshire, England, but is not included in T.M. Banta's history of the family. He married in about 1510.
The county of Bedford is the smallest of the 'shire' counties. It has no cities, but does have some market towns of note, including Bedford, Luton, Dunstable and Leighton Buzzard. It is due north of London and just northwest of Hertfordshire.
The county stretches across the plain of the river Ouse to the Chiltern Hills and most of the land is rich clay, which is why it has always been a great wheat-growing area. The county rises and falls in a series of gentle hills and valleys, from a flat, clay plain in the north through a belt of sandy hills stretching from Woburn to Sandy to a higher ridge of chalk downs in the south of the county, where the highest point of 801 feet is reached.
Podington is at the north end of Bedfordshire. It was the site of a major World War II bomber base. Hinwich [Hinwick] is a parish of Podington [or is it the other way around?], in the Hundred of Willey.
He was born in about 1510. Some sources claim a birth in 1499 in Hinwich, Bedfordshire, England. A third source says 1514, and yet a fourth 1520. He married Alice Squire [Squyre], the daughter of John and Margaret Squire, in about 1528 in Bedforshire. She was born in Podington, Bedfordshire, England. In addition to William, below, their children were Thomas, Alice, Agnes, and another Alice. He died about 1564 in Hinwich. His will was dated 1562 and proved in 1564. The will of his widow was dated 20 April 1567 and proved on 2 June 1567.(14) William Sayre Jr. (1535)
He was born in about 1540. Other sources claim 1535, probably in Odell, Bedfordshire. Odell is not far from Podington. He married Elizabeth [Squire?] in about 1570. He died on 30 May 1581 in Hinwich, Bedfordshire. In addition to Francis, below, their children were William, Robert, Alice and Thomas.(15) Francis Sayre (1565)
He was born in about 1570. Other sources claim 1565 in Hinwich. These sources claim he was christened in 1566 in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire. The marriage of Francis Sayre and Elizabeth Atkins is recorded in the parish register of the All Saints church, Leighton Buzzard, on 15 November 1591. He was a mercer, or silk merchant as he is denominated in the taxroll of 1609-10.
Leighton Buzzard, on the east side of the river Ouzel, is located near the great Roman road of Watling Street, which runs from Dover to London and on to the Midlands through Hockliffe close to the town. It is in the southwest of Bedfordshire, on the border with Bucks county. The suffix Buzzard is believed to have been taken from Theobold de Busar, and was added to distinguish the town from Leighton Bromswold in Huntingdonshire, both of which were, at the time, in the Diocese of Lincoln. During the Civil War (1642 - 1645) the lords of the manor were staunch supporters of King Charles 1, however in 1644 there were some ten thousand Roundhead soldiers with horses quartered in and around Leighton Buzzard, which clearly affected their allegiance.All Saints Church
Located in the St. Albans Dioceses of the Church of England, this church is like a small cathedral in its spaciousness and architectural splendour. Constructed of local sandstone and fully embattled, this splendid church, the first historical record of which is in l288, is particularly notable for its pinnacled tower and broach spire rising to 191 feet.
Francis died in April 1645 in Leighton Buzzard, intestate, his widow Elizabeth being appointed administratrix of his estate in April of that year, as appears from the record in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, Administration Act Book A.D. 1645, folio 39. In addition to Thomas, below, their children were Francis, Elizabeth, William, Alice, John, William, Abell, Daniel, Rebecca, Johannes, Sara, Tobias, and Mary (whew!).(16) Thomas Sayre (1597)
He was born on 7 July 1597 in Leighton Buzzard and baptized on 20 July 1597 at the All Saints church. He married Margaret Aldrich [Aldred], the daughter of John Aldred and Agnes Ross, in 1620.
Thomas was the first of the family to arrive in America, doing so sometime prior to 1638. Lynn, Massachusetts was settled in 1629. In 1638 the committee appointed to divide the lands completed their work and a book was provided in which were recorded the names of the proprietors with the number of acres allotted to each. This book was lost, but the first three pages have been preserved and on the first page appear the names of Thomas Sayre, sixty acres, and Job Sayre (his brother) sixty acres. Job may actually be his eldest son vice his brother. These settlers were known to be Puritans. Was Thomas a Puritan and what of the status of the All Saints church?
Originally known as Saugust, Lynn is on the Atlantic coast, 11 miles northeast of Boston. It was founded by settlers from nearby Salem who were looking for new lands. When the first official minister, Samuel Whiting, arrived from King’s Lynn, England, the new settlers were so excited that they changed the name of their community to Lynn in 1637 in honor of him. Though primarily an agricultural community, the first tannery in America was founded there in 1629 and it eventually became a center of the shoe-making industry.
In 1639 Thomas and fifteen other families, under the leadership of Reverend Abraham Pierson of Boston, got a royal grant from William Alexander, the Earl of Sterling, to settle an area on Long Island. Thomas and Job Sayre each contributed 5 pounds as their share.
|Southampton, Long Island
The Dutch who had settled on Manhattan Island in the early part of the seventeenth century, soon began to build and occupy on the opposite shore of Long Island. As their population increased, they pushed their settlements out eastward to the north and south shores of the Island. The western part of the Island came under the jurisdiction of the Dutch Government at New Amsterdam until the surrender of New York to the English in 1664.
The proximity of the Island to Connecticut afforded some ground for the English Crown to set claim to it. On April 22, 1636, Charles I requested the Corporation for New England, called the Plymouth Colony, to issue their patent to William Alexander, Earl of Stirling, for Long Island, and the islands adjacent. They did so , and on 20 April 1637, the Earl gave power of attorney to James Farret to dispose of said lands. This, however, took effect only on the east end of Long Island where the English subsequently resided.
Upon the death of Lord Stirling in 1640, his heir relinquished the grant to the king and thus it happened that on March 12, 1664, Charles II, granted, with other territory, Long Island and the islands adjacent, to his brother James, Duke of York and Albany.
As to the settlers themselves, Cotton Mather said that between thirty and forty families in Lynn, Massachusetts, finding themselves straited for land, came over to Long Island and effected a settlement. In enumerating the settlements of New England, Ogilby, in his History of America, says: “About the year 1640, by a fresh supply of people, that settled Long Island, was there erected the twenty-third town call’d Southampton, by the Indians, Agawam.”
The original “undertakers,” eight in number, purchased a sloop for the transportation of their families and their goods for 80 Pounds, of which Edward Howell and Daniel Howe each contributed 15 pounds. Edmund Farrington, George Welbe, and Henry Walton each 10 pounds; and Josia Stanborough, Job Sayre, Edmund Needham and Thomas Sayre, each 5 pounds.
In 1640 Thomas and the other settlers sailed from Massachusetts and landed at Cow Bay, now Manhasset Harbor, and set up camp. Manhasset is on the north side of the island, near New York City. Unfortunately, the Dutch controlled the area and didn't think much of the "royal" grant. After arresting and interviewing most of the settlers, the Dutch authorities ordered them to “depart forthwith from our territory, and never return to it without the Director’s express consent.”
The settlers then sailed around the eastern end of Long Island, Orient Point, and landed, on 12 June 1640, on the south side of Peconic Bay, a place now known as Conscience Point, and started a settlement which they called Southampton. This was the first English settlement on the island.
In 1648 Thomas Sayre built the house on the town lot apportioned to him. It is the oldest English house on Long Island or in the state of New York.
Thomas died on 23 April 1671 in Southhampton, Suffolk county, Long Island, New York. In addition to Franics, Damaris and Joseph, below, he had the following children: Job, Mary Alice, Daniel, Hannach, Unknown daughter, Hannah and Johannes.(17) Francis Sayre (1628)
He was born in Leighton Buzzard in 1628 and died on 20 January 1698 in Southampton. He married Sarah Wheeler in 1646 in Bedfordshire, England.(18) John Sayre (1665)
He was born on 6 January 1665 in Southampton and died on 29 April 1724. A Deacon. He married Sarah on 27 September 1689. She was born in 1669 in Southampton.(19) John Sayre (1692)
He was born on 17 March 1692 in Southampton. A Deacon. He married Hannah Howell in 1717. He died on 12 March 1767.(20) Stephen Sayre (1736)
He was born on 12 June 1736 in Southampton, Long Island. He married Elizabeth Noel, the daughter of William Noel, on 18 February 1775 in London. He is the subject of the book, "Stephen Sayre: American Revolutionary Adventurer" by John Richard Alden and "The Remarkable Adventures of Stephen Sayre" by Boyd. He was the original owner of the estate, Point Breeze, in Bordentown, New Jersey, which he purchased after returning from his adventures in Europe. More of this below.
From "Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography", edited by James Grant Wilson and John Fiske, New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1887-1889:
"Sayre, Stephen, patriot, born on Long Island, New York, in 1784[sic]; died in Virginia, 27 September, 1818. He was graduated at Princeton in 1757, engaged early in business, and became a successful merchant and banker in London. He was sheriff of that city in 1774, and possessed the confidence of the Earl of Chatham [William Pitt the elder] at a critical period. He ardently favored the cause of the independence of the American colonies, and suffered for his devotion to his country. An officer of the royal guards, named Richardson, also an American, brought a charge of high treason against him for the use of a light and unguarded expression referring to the king's death. Mr. Sayre was committed to the tower, and, though released soon afterward, his banking-house failed, and, having lost everything, he was forced to leave England. He was afterward employed by Benjamin Franklin on some important missions, was his private secretary for a period, and went with Arthur Lee to Berlin at the time of the first suggestion of the scheme of armed neutrality. After leaving Berlin, Mr. Sayre went to Copenhagen, Stockholm, and St. Petersburg, and in each of those cities received ample supplies to support the cause of the independence of the United States. In 1795 he was an active opponent of Washington's administration."
He died on 27 September 1818 in Brandon, Virginia.(17) Damaris Sayre (c1615)
Thomas' daughter was born in abut 1615. She married David Atwater in 1637. He had been born in 1613 in Lenham, Kent, England, and was one of the original settlers of New Haven, Connecticut.The Sayre Family of Pennsylvania
Joseph Sayre, below, was a brother of Daniel Sayre, whose descendents included Serena Sayre, who married Abner Hissem. Joseph's descendents included Francis Bowes Sayre.(17) Joseph Sayre (c1630)
Much of the data below comes from the excellent website, The Sayre Surname Database, at http://longislandgenealogy.com/sayre/surnames.htm#thomas.
Thomas' son Joseph was born in about 1630, probably in Bedfordshire, England. He moved with his father to Lynn, Massachusetts and subsequently to Southampton, Long Island. He married Martha. On a fragment of the town records in Southhampton is the following:
"Monday Jan. 13, 1667, laid out for Job and Joseph Sayre on the north side of Lieut. Post's, by Francis Sayre, on ye South side 51 poles; on the north side 48 poles; on ye East side 30 poles, on the West side 32 poles, for 10 acres."
He moved to Elizabeth, New Jersey around 1665 and was named one of the proprietors in Elizabeth in a deed from Richard Nicholls, the Governor.
He was a tanner and a farmer, and received 40 pounds in merchandise by his father's will towards setting him up as a tanner. He also received one third of his father's household effects, from which possibly it might be inferred that at that date he was not yet married, or had just begun housekeeping.
He signed a petition to the Governor in December 1667, was a witness there on 4 October 1671, and took the oath of allegiance to the Dutch on 11 September 1673. On 11 April 1676, a warrant for the survey of 180 acres of land at Elizabeth was issued to him. He died in December 1695. His will was dated 4 Decmeber 1695 and was apparently proved the same day.
In addition to the two sons below, their children include Ephriam (b1677) and Sarah (b1679).
|Elizabeth, New Jersey
Elizabethtown, now Elizabeth, is located in northern New Jersey, just south of Newardk and across from Staten Island, on the Passaic river. The area was originally settled by the Dutch and the Swedes in the 1630's. The Dutch colony of New Netherland, which included New Jersey, was conquered by England in 1664. The Dutch, Swedish, and Finnish residents of New Jersey, along with their African slaves, were then joined by English, Scots, Irish, and Scots-Irish settlers. The Elizabethtown tract was purchased from the Indians on 28 October 1664.
Thomas' second son, he was born in about 1675. He married Hannah. They had a son, Joseph Sayer, born in about 1710. Thomas Jr. died in 1713.(18) Daniel Sayre (a1673)
Joseph's son was also a farmer and active in his community of Elizabethtown, New Jersey. He was born in about 1673 in Elizabeth, Union county, New Jersey. He married Elizabeth Lyons. He has a will on record, proven on 3 June 1723 in Elizabethtown Port, Union county, New Jersey. In addition to Daniel and John, below, his children were Ephraim (1705), Ebenezer (1710), Jonathan (1712), and Joseph (1714), all born in Elizabethtown.(19) Daniel Sayre Jr. (a1702)
Daniel's first son. He was born in about 1702 and died in about 1760. He married Elizabeth. They had the following children: Daniel (b1730), John (b1733), Mary (b1736), and Ephriam (b1746).(19) John Sayre (a1705)
Daniel's son John was born in about 1705 [1708?] in Elizabethtown, Union county, New Jersey. He moved to New York city where he worked as a tailor and shopkeeper. I'm not sure when he moved there, but he was in New York in 1730. He may have lived in the Jamaica, Queens area. He married Esther Stillwell in about 1730 in New York City, though there are references to the marriage occurring in Elizabethtown [where he was born] and even at Christ's Church, in Philadelphia [where he eventually lived]. Esther Stillwell Sayre was the daughter of Nicholas and Elizabeth Stillwell - from "Colonial Families of Philadelphia."
|The Stillwell Family
See Stillwell Roots for an excellent background on the family with many references.(15) Nicholas Stillwell (1570)
He was born in 1570 in Collopmore, Surrey, England. He married Alice in about 1600. He died in 1647. Their sons, John and Jasper, did not emigrate.(16) Lt. Nicholas Stillwell (1603)
(15) Nicholas Stillwell (1570)
He was born in 1603 in Colletmore, Surrey, England. While still in England he married Abigail Hopton, with whom he had two children, Richard and Nicholas. This is probably not true. Abigail was supposed to be the sister of Lord Hopton, and a lady in waiting to Elizabeth, the Queen of Bohemia. Nicholas was said to have rescued her under perilous circumstances. Unfortunately for the romantics, though history does relate a story about a maid and a cavalier in similar circumstances, their names are unknown. Moreover, Lord Hopton did not have a sister.
An alternate story was that Nicholas moved from England to Holland to escape religious persecution, he being a Calvinist. There he married a Dutch women, Ann VanDyke, from Leyden, Holland. They emigrated to America with their two sons. This may have a first or second wife.
Whatever the case, Nicholas moved to America with his two sons. He settled first in Virginia, on the York river. He became a tobacco farmer and was named a "tobacco inspector." He was in the milita, which is where he got his rank, and took part in a number of campaings aganist the Indians. He got himself into some political trouble and so left the colony.
He moved to the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam and eventually settled and founded the community of Gravesend, in the southwestern portion of Brooklyn. He married Anne Van Dyke and they had 11 children. Though he supported the Dutch when the English took over the colony in 1664, he did obtain a large tract of land on Staten Island and moved his family there. He died on 28 December 1671 on Staten Island, New York. Their children settled on Staten Island and Long Island, and in Monmouth and Cape May counties in New Jersey. The children were Ann, William, Alice, Maria (b1645), Elias, Thomas, William, Thomas, Jeremiah (b abt 1653), Daniel, Mary, Jeremiah and Mary.(17) Richard Stillwell (1635)
(15) Nicholas Stillwell (1570) (16) Lt. Nicholas Stillwell (1603)
He was born in about 1635 in Surrey, England. He followed his father to America, but eventually settled in Massachusetts. He married Freelove [great name!] Cook in about 1659 in Plymouth, Massachusetts. They had a son, Thomas (b1660). Richard died after 1671.(17) Captain Nicholas Stillwell (1636)
(15) Nicholas Stillwell (1570) (16) Lt. Nicholas Stillwell (1603)
He was born in 1636 in Surrey, England and accompanied his father to America. He married three times. To Rebecca Bayless in 1662, Elizabeth Catherine Huybert, the widow of Charles Morgan, on 6 February 1671, and finally to Elizabeth Cornell [Corwin] on 6 December 1703. He had a total of 9 children. Nicholas was a Captain in the militia in New York and remained in Gravesend when his father moved to Staten Island. He became Constable of Gravesend and served in the Colonial Assembly and as a magistrate. He died before 5 March 1715, when his will was proven, in Gravesend, Kings county, New York.(18) Nicholas Stillwell (1673)
(15) Nicholas Stillwell (1570) (16) Lt. Nicholas Stillwell (1603) (17) Captain Nicholas Stillwell (1636)
He was born on 25 April 1673 in Kings county [of Long Island]. He married Elizabeth. This may be the Elizabeth Cornell mentioned above as the third wife of his father. The timing makes sense. His father left him "100 pounds, and a negro boy" in his will. Not much is written about him because he had only daughters. He died before 11 September 1735.
"I, Elizabeth Stillwell, of Jamaica, in Queens County, widow, being infirm in body. My funeral charges and just debts are to be paid by my daughter, Miriam Marsh. I leave all my personal and movable estate (except my negro woman Hagar and her two daughters) to my daughter, Miriam Marsh, during her life, and then what may be remaining shall go to Mary Southward, wife of Samuel Southward, of Hempstead, and Esther Sayre, now wife of John Sayre, of New York, tailor. An inventory is to be made of all my goods. And my daughter Miriam is to give 18 silver spoons out of my estate, each to weigh 2 ounces, as follows: Six of them to Elizabeth, daughter of Samuel Southward; six to Elizabeth, daughter of John Sayre; and six to Elizabeth, daughter of James Millward, son of my daughter Elizabeth, deceased, and "they are to keep the same in remembrance of me." I leave to James Millward 10 pounds. My negroes named above are to be free, and to have their bedding and apparell. I make John Sayre and Jarvis Mudge, Jr., of Oyster Bay, executors."The will was dated 11 September 1735, which was probably right after her husband's death. Proved 1 November 1753 [I've also seen 1735 for this date]. While the silver spoons may imply wealth, I have read that most family's strived to have at least a few silver spoons. (19) Esther Stillwell (c1707)
(15) Nicholas Stillwell (1570) (16) Lt. Nicholas Stillwell (1603) (17) Captain Nicholas Stillwell (1636) (18) Nicholas Stillwell (1673)
Of Jamaica, Queens, Long Island, New York. She married John Sayre.
John and Esther lived on Broad Street in New York, and there had and raised a family. Next door was the family of Francis Bowes and Rachel le Chevalier Bowes who appear to have been close friends. In 1735 John was working as a tailor. He owned and occupied a house and store on 56 Broad Street. In that same year he was admitted as a Freeman of the city. There are several New York City wills, dated from 1735 to 1741, which have a John Sayre as a witness. I want to believe these refer to "our" John.
|The Bowes Family
John's wife, Esther, died sometime after 1747 and John then married Rachel le Chevalier Bowes, whose husband had died in 1749, on 8 April 1751 at Christ Church, Philadelphia - from "Record of Pennsylvania Marriages Prior to 1810" Volume 1, by Clarence M. Busch, 1895. Rachel had been baptized at the French church in New York on 22 February 1708 [? garbled]. John probably made a good match. As a judge, Sir Francis Bowes had probably been a relatively well-off man. After this marriage John became a prominant real estate 'mogul' and the owner of a distillary. I suspect his purchases were funded by his new wife's inherited wealth.
At some point John sold his property and both the Sayre and Bowes families moved to Philadelphia, but not later than 1751. At the time the will of his mother-in-law, Elizabeth Stillwell, above, was probated in 1753 he was living in Philadelphia and was described as a shopkeeper.
Pursuant to obtaining a fire insurance policy, a survey of "John Sayre's House on the South Side of High Street" was performed on 29 December 1753 - from the Contributorship Archives. By 1755 he was living on the East Side of Second Street.
John Sayre served as a Vestryman at Christ Church in Philadelphia from 1754 to 1761. His children with Esther, in addition to James and John below, were Matthew (c1735), Esther Bowes (2 June 1747), who married William A. Atlee, and Elizabeth (c1740), who received six of her grandmother's silver spoons.
John died sometime after 1761.(20) Reverend John Sayre Jr. (1738)
More is known of this man than any other member of the Sayre family. John Sayre's son, also named John, was born on 4 June 1738 at 38 [58?] Broad Street in New York City. He was the son of Esther Stillwell, and married Mary Bowes, on 28 September 1758 at Christ Church in Philadelphia - from "Record of Pennsylvania Marriage Prior to 1810" Volume 1, by Clarence M. Busch, 1895. Mary was born on 5 March 1739 in Trenton, Mercer county, New Jersey, the daughter of Sir Francis Bowes and Rachel le Chevalier. John and Mary had been neighbors back in New York City and, later, in Philadelpia they had been "brother & sister" after their widowed parents wed. Mary died on 11 January 1789 in Bloomsbury, New Jersey.
In 1763 Johan and Mary were living on the East Side of Front Street in the Northern Liberties.
John's father was a tailor, but the family's fortunes apparently rose when he married the widow of Sir Francis Bowes. John went to King's College, now Columbia University, in New York City and was ordained an Episcpal minister. Lizebeth Sekkes says he was also trained as a physician - From 'Sayre Family, Lineage of Thomas Sayre a Founder of Southampton,' 1901, Theodore Banta. The claim of his son, James, below, clearly shows that he was trained and worked as a physician. "He must have spent some time in Lancaster, Pennsylvania where his brother and sister were both important figures, before moving to the area around Orange and Rockland counties in New York. This is about 30 miles north of New York City."
In 1769 Reverend Sayre was appointed by the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, which appointed missionaries of the Church of England and provided in part for their support, as a 'missionary' to Newburgh, New York. "He had looked after five parishes in New York State as minister and medical physician for the sum of thirty pounds a year." - from "The Fight for Peace" by Devere Allen, 1930. Newburgh is in the mid-Hudson valley region. Their minister, a Mr. Watkins, had died after a long, lingering disease. He was said to be of an easy, inoffensive disposition, but that "his talents as a preacher were not of a popular cast, and therefore not calculated to increase the number of his flock."
Soon after entering upon his duities, John moved into the back country, preaching alternately at Newburgh, Otterkill division and Wallkill division or Log Church. Being a man of talents and a very popular preacher, he was very successful in his ministrations, and gathered large congregations at the different stations where he preached. He succeeded in obtaining a charter for each of the three churches under his care, St. George’s Church at Newburgh, St. Andrew’s Church at Wallkill, and St. David’s Church at Orange, all dated 30 July 1770. These charters, issued by the royal authority of George III were granted by Cadwallader Colden, Esq., Lieutenant Governor and Commander-in-Chief of the province of New York. The second named charter constituted the congregation of the Walkill Church a body corporate, by the name, style and title of “The Rector and Members of St. Andrew’s Church, in the Precinct of the Walkill, in the County of Ulster;” and appointed Cadwallader Colden, Jun. and Andrew Graham, church wardens; and George Graham, John Blake, James Galatian, Charles Brodhead and John Davidson, vestrymen. After the building of the church, and under the pastoral care of the Rev. Mr. Sayre, the congregation increased rapidly, and enjoyed a high degree of prosperity until the commencement of the Revolutionary war. The Rev. Mr. Sayre, forseeing the troubles that were about to ensue on the breaking out of the Revolutionary war, suddenly relinquished his charge in 1775 and left the congregation in a very unsettled state. The parish remained vacant until 1790. The suddeness of his departure implies a falling-out between the previously popular, but Loyalist, minister and his, perhaps, pre-Revolutionary congregation.
|Newburgh, New York
Newburgh is located on a knoll on the western shore of the Hudson river, in Orange county, just south of the Ulster county border. Only 30 miles north of New York City, in the 1770's it was a rural area amidst the Catskill Mountains. It was first settled in 1709 by the Palatine Germans.
Of note during John's tenure in Newburgh was his interest in the education of Blacks in the area, having followed a plan of coeducation in each of the churches under his charge.
John later became pastor of Trinity Church in Fairfield, Connecticut. His rectorship is recorded from 1775 to 1779. He made no secret of his sympathies for the crown and encouraged his children to carry provisions to jailed parishioners. Advertised as an enemy to the country, he was banished from Fairfield for about seven months, and after his return his movements were severely restricted. On 29 January 1777, Rev. John Sayer [sic] of Fairfield was before the Governor and Council as a Tory that he might be ordered to some safe place for confinement - Fairfield county was a Tory center, yet there a number of patriots as well who may have threatened the loyalist minister. He
"found himself surrounded by the roiling conflicts between Tory and Revolutionist. In his services he omitted that part of the English Liturgy containing prayers for the king, as he put it, "for peace' sake." He refused his sanction to violence on either side, but those were times when everyone who was not openly a Revolutionist was deemed a Loyalist and traitor."His residence was attacked by two hundred militia and he was banned for eighteen [sic] months to the the parish of New Britain to be under the care of Colonel Isaac Lee, and not to depart the limits of said society until further orders. "The populace had become infuriated when Sayre refused to subscribe to a revolutionary manifesto, on the ground that the weapons of Christ were spiritual, and that he, as a Christian minister, could not "promise to take up and use any carnal weapons at all." He also rebelled against that part of the manifesto barring the extension of kind offices or hospitality, which he held to be a duty of all true Christians, even to an enemy." - from Allen.
He was basished to New Britain and was probably the first Episcopal clergyman that ever resided there. In a letter he subsequently said:
"I was banished to a place called New Britain, where I was entirely unknown except to one poor man, the inhabitants differing from me both in religion and political principles; however, the family in which I lived showed me such marks of kindness as they could, and I was treated with civility by the neighbors."In July 1777 the wardens of the Episcopal church and others at Fairfield, with consent of the selectmen and committee of inspection, petitioned for his release and return to his people to remain within the limits of Fairfield and give bond with surety for good behavior, which petition was granted.
When British forces raided Fairfield in July 1779, Reverend Sayre begged that Fairfiled be spared. He was denied. He begged that the British spare a few houses so that the infirm might have a place to stay. He was again denied. The troops burned the entire town, including Sayre's church and parsonage. "Upon this failure all hands turned against him on shore, and facing the probability of seeing his family mobbed and perhaps killed, he finally, with his wife and eight young children, was forced to take refuge on the British fleet." - from Allen. They fled with only the clothes on their back.
Founded in 1639, Fairfield is located on the shore of Long Island Sound. When the Revolutionary War began in the 1770s, Fairfielders were caught in the middle. In a predominantly Tory section of the state, the people of Fairfield were early supporters of the cause for Independence. Throughout the war, a constant battle was fought across Long Island Sound as men from British-controlled Long Island raided the coast in whaleboats and privateers. On the morning of 7 July 1779, approximately 2,000 British troops landed on Fairfield Beach and proceeded to invade the town. When they left the following evening the entire town lay in ruins, burned to the ground as punishment for Fairfield's support of the rebel cause.
The Reverend Sayre and his family initially resided in Flushing, New York, but by 1781 they had reached New York City where he served as sort of a roaming minister for a number of Episcopal parishes on Long Island. From the Roll of Officers of the British American or Loyalist Corps: Rev. John Sayre, Chaplain, British Legation, New York City.
How did it happen that the Reverend was a Loyalist when his son married the daughter of a rabid Patriot, William Heysham? I suspect he was inclined towards loyalty to the crown by his position in the Church of England, an extremely hierachical organization. Most of the revolutionary spirit came out of the dissenting churches, the Congregationalists, the Dutch Reformed, and the early Baptists & Methodists. The C-of-E inculcated a deference to authority, to the churches ministers and, ultimately, to the King. John Jr. would have had a difficult time not being a Loyalist. His son, Francis Bowes, would have been 13 when British troops burned Fairfield and the property of his stoutly Loyalist father. While this did not shake his father's faith in his King, it may have done so in the son.
At the end of the war John Sayre was one of the agents chosen to arrange for the resettlement of the Loyalists. It was he that made the announcement to the Loyalists in Long Island of the King's offer of land in Nova Scotia. Why Nova Scotia? I suspect this island was chosen because it was close by New York and there was land available there. Canada was still a primarly French settled colony whose people and customs would not mesh well with the Loyalists.
Reverend Sayre sought and got a land grant in New Brunswick for himself, "receiving what was known as No. 56 Dock Street." He moved there in October 1783 only to die a year later, on 5 August 1784 in Burton [or Maugerville], St. John's, New Brunswick, Canada. The Reverend Sayre had been a true pacifist and his descendents, like John Nevin Sayre, would be pacifists too. There is a memorial to the Reverand Sayre in the church at Maugerville where he officiated. The inscription reads:
"Here lies the body of
Rev. John Sayre
formerly Rector of Trinity Church, Fairfield, Ct., and one of the Society's Mis-
sionaries to that place. From then a Refugee with his family within His
Majesty's line in New York, and from New York, upon the Evacuation of it by
the British Troops, to this place.
Who departed this life at Burton, on Saint John's River, upon the Fifth of
August, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty-four, in
the forty-seventy year of his age."
In 1785 his wife and remaining children sold their property in St. John and all their goods to James, one of John's sons. From the Registry Office of St. John, New Brunswic, 22 July 1785:
"Mary Sayre and others to James Sayre: Know all men that &c. we Mary Sayre, widow of the Rev. John Sayre, deceased. and John Sayre, Francis B. Sayre, Cadwallader Sayre, Rachel Cunningham, wife of Lieut. Thomas Cunningham, Ester Robinson, Mary Sayre, Junior, and Henrietta Sayre; all of the Provice of New Brunswick for 5pounds, release to James Sayre, their interest in Lot of Land in City of St. John, New Brunswick, in Dock Street."Thomas Cunningham was the son of the notorious Captain William Cunningham, Provost Marshall of New York City during the war. It was in great part the Provost's doing that led to such suffering among American prisoners of war.
She and the children then moved to Bloomsbury, outside of Trenton, New Jersey. Why did they move back? Its cold in New Brunswick and Mrs. Sayre had probably been more equivocal in her support of the crown during the war, especially after the burning of Fairfield. A move to New Jersey was also, for her, a move home.
|Emigration of the Loyalists
After the departure of the British from the colony of New York following the American Revolution, several hundred Loyalist refugees joined together to form the Port Roseway Associates. Their aim was to establish a settlement in Nova Scotia. Port Roseway was selected for its easy access to the lumber trade on the River St John and the Bay of Fundy, and for the access that its harbour would give them to the European trade. The emigation of the Loyalists from New York began in September 1782.
England had meant to be generous. From three hundred to six hundred acres of land in Nova Scotia were assigned to every family. A full supply of food for the first year was to be provided, two-thirds for the second, and one-third for the third year. Warm clothing, medicines, ammunition, seeds, farming implements, building materials and tools, millstones, and other requirements for grist-mills and saw-mills were granted and given out with tolerable fairness, but there were many delays, much poor material, and errors in distribution which worked great individual suffering, enhanced by the unexpected severity of the climate.
Port Roseway, now known as Shelburne, just east of the southern point of Nova Scotia, had been chosen as their destination by the New York Loyalists, and in the fall of 1782 arrangements were made for their removal there. Four hundred and seventy-one heads of families were divided into sixteen companies, each having a captain and two lieutenants to preserve order, to distribute provisions, and to apportion lands. Each company was given a transport-ship for its conveyance, cannon and ammunition. The fleet, composed of eighteen square-rigged vessels, several sloops and schooners, and protected by two men-of-war, left New York City on 27 April 1783.
Favouring winds brought them in seven days to the snow-wrapped coast on which they were to find a home. Upon arriving in Port Roseway some were so discouraged with what they saw that they soon after continued on their way, to find a better place to make a home for themselves and their families. The Rev. John Sayre, on his arrival in the month of October, found the local authorities quite unable to grapple with the situation. "Many of the Loyalists are unsheltered and on the brink of despair on account of the delay in allotting their lands to them."
Port Roseway is now called Shelburne. There is today a town named Sayre in Nova Scotia and the surname is still in evidence.
The following is from a claim made against the British government by John's eldest son, James, for losses the family suffered at the hands of the British Army during the Revolution, as recorded in "United Empire Loyalists, Parts I-II," by Alexander Fraser.
Evidence on the Case of John Sayre, late of Fairfield, Connecticut.John and Mary had eight children that survived infancy,
James Sayre, oldest son to Claimt., sworn:
Says that his late Father, the Revd. John Sayre, came from New York with his family in Summer of 1783 and resided at Mangerville & Burton until his death which was in June 1784.
Says that his father was on his death bed for some time before his death. Witness is the oldest son of the deceased John Sayre and is 25 years of age.
Says his late Father was a native of N. York Province. In 1775 he was settled in Fairfield, he enjoied the living of Fairfield, he continued to reside there until 1779 when he joined General Tryon.
Says he continued to officiate as a Clergyman of the Church of England & to pray for the King until the last. About 18 months before General Tryon came to Danbury. Mr. Sayre was taken Prisnr. on acct. of his Loyalty & carried to a place called New Britain & kept Prisnr. on Parole of 9 months. He was ordered to return to Fairfield on acct. of the influence he had acquired in the place of his Banishmt. In 1779 Mr. Sayre brought off his family with him to N. York & remained within the lines the whole war. [He] enjoyed an allowance of a Dollar pt. Diem for some time & was afterwards Chaplain to the British Legion.
His father died in 1784 and left a wife & 8 children, viz.: Rachel Cunningham in N. Scotia. James, the witness. Esther Robinson in this Province. Mary Sayre, unmarried in Lancaster, Pensilvanla. Harriet Sayre, unmarried in Lancaster, Pensilvania. John Sayre in New Brunswick. Francis Bowes with his mother in Pensilvania. Cadwallader, likewise with his mother. Says that 14 months after his father's death Mrs. Sayre went to Pensilvania & now resides there. Says that it was her necessitous situation that drove her there.
Witness now claims as executor to the last will of his late Father. Produces Probate of last will of John Sayre, dated 18th July, 1784, whereby he Bequeathes the amount of his estate to be divided in Nine equal shares & to be given share & share alike to his wife & each of his children. Witness says that it was his Father's intention that whatever compensation might be made to his family for Property lost, might be equally divided, a share to his wife & one to each of the children. The whole of the Property claimed was destroied by the fire at Danbury when the Town was burnt by order of Genr. Tryon. A Library of 600 volumes, £300 Cury. A Book of Plates, £10.10.0. Medicines, Surgical Instruments, shop furniture, family pictures, painting in oak, etc. The whole of the Household furniture, 15 bushels wheat & 10 of corn. Lost 2 3filch Cows & 2 Hogs, left in the Pasture. 2 Barrels of Beef & 2 of Pork. Goods & necessaries brought from New York by Mr. Sayre a few days before the fire, £25 H. Cury. Clothing for the family £50 Cury. A Trunk was packed up containing all the valuable parts of the family dress, Plate & Jewels, which was lost on the way to the place of embarkation. The value he thinks was £164 Cury. The Church Plate was likewise in this Trunk, but is not claimed, being the Property of the Parish. Nine months Loss of Possession as a Phisician, £150 States due his late Father £600 Cury. Produces a letter from his Mother dated Lancaster, 13th April, 1786, which seems to corroborate the acct. given by Witness. Produces affidavit of Capt. F. Wood. of Coll. Fanning's regt., who is now 45 miles above Fredrickton in a bad state of health. To the Loyalty of the family & to the truth of many circumstances before named. Sworn before Dun. Murray, J.P., 1stFeby., 1787.
Further Evidence on the Claim of Sayre.
Witness, Abiather Camp, sworn:
Knew the late Mr. Sayre during the war. He was always firm in his Loyalty & when not allowed to pray for the king he did not officiate. He practised Phisick & Surgery. Mr. Sayre lived genreely from his living & practice. His House was burnt in 1779. Witness had been in his House some. short time before, it was well furnished, but the furniture was old. He had a considerable Library, and he saw medicines in the same room, but no great quantity. The family brought nothing off, and recollects hearing Mr. Sayre regret the loss of the Church plate on the way down & Mr. Sayre's Plate. Mrs. Sayre & family quitted this Province last year, she was then in great distress. Edmund Barlow sworn: Says he lived in Fairfield at the time of Genr. Tryon's expedition in 1779. He had been in Mr. Sayre's House a day or two before. The House was well furnished. He had a large Celleetion of Books. Witness had charge of a heavy trunk to bring to the place of embarkation, it was so heavy that he was obliged to quit it. Mr. Sayre had a Horse & 2 Cows. He left them at Fairfield.
Of Philadelphia. She was born on 9 July 1759. She married Thomas Cunningham and lived in England. She died on 23 March 1814 in Philadelphia. They had one son, William Cunningham in the East India custom service.(21) John Sayre (1760)
He was born on 22 August 1760 and died five days later.(21) James Sayre (1761)
Brother of Francis and the eldest surviving son of the Reverend Sayre. He was born on 7 September 1761 in Philadelphia. He arrived in Nova Scotia with the "spring fleet" of 1783. He remained there after his father's death, buying his father's lands from his widowed mother - from "Dictionary of Canadian Biography." He married Polly Smith, a loyalist from Rhode Island - from "Arrivals - Our First Ancestors in New Brunswick." He may have served a term as Sheriff. He died on 22 March 1849 in Dorchester Island, New Brunswick.(21) Esther Sayre (1763)
She was born on 17 February 1763. She married Christopher Robinson, an officer in Colonel Simcoe's regiment of Queen's Rangers, in Sir Henry Clinton's army. Robinson was appointed Deputy Surveyor of Crown Lands in Upper Canada. They were the parents of Sir Beverley Robinson, Chief Justice of Ontario, and grand-parents of Honorable John Beverley Robinson, the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.(21) John Sayre (1764)
He was born on 10 December 1764. He continued to live in New Brunswick. He married Elenor Thompson.(21) Dr. Francis Bowes Sayre (1765)
Francis was born on 9 September 1765 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He married Ann Heysham.(21) Sarah Jane Sayre (1769)
Of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She was born on 16 March 1769. She died three days later.(21) Cadwallader Sayre (1770)
He was born on 9 August 1770 in Coldingham, Ulster county, New York. He died on 22 October 1790.(21) Mary Elizabeth Sayre (1771)
She was born on 9 November 1771 in Bellemont, Ulster county, New York. She married the Reverand Thomas Grant, of Amwell, New Jersey. She died on 21 December 1830.(21) Cadwallader Ellison Sayre (1773)
He was born on 7 July 1773 in Ulster county, New York. He was in the East India Company's service. He had the command of a small fort on St. Helena in 1814, however the HEIC's troops had been removed after Napoleon was lodged there. He apparently moved to New Brunswick in 1817. He never married.(21) Daniel Ogilvie Sayre (1775)
He was born on 4 October 1775 in Fairfield, Connecticut. He died on 13 April 1777.(21) Theodosia Henrietta Sayre (1778)
She was born on 4 May 1778 in Fairfield, Connecticut. Theodosia marred Richard Cox[e], Esquire on 11 February 1801 at Christ Church, Philadelphia - from "Record of Pennsylvania Marriage Priot to 1810" Volume 1, by Clarence M. Busch, 1895. She was not, however, mentioned by James Sayre, above.(21) Harriet Sayre
She moved to Lancaster, Pensylvania.(20) James Sayre (1745)
He was born in 1745 in New York City and married Sarah Forgue in 1775. She was born in 1757, the daughter of Dr. Forgue. James was educated at the University of Pennsylvania, graduating in 1765. He was admitted to the bar in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 1765 and to that in Orange county, New York in 1770. He appears to have continued to practice until 1772. He subsequently became a Reverend minister in the Church of England, like his brother, John. He received an A.M. degree from King's College in 1774. With the onset of the Revolution James again followed his brother, this time as a Loyalist.
I have a document showing James Sayre as the Chaplain of the 8th Company, 1st Battalion of Oliver DeLancey's Brigade of Loyalists.
Oliver DeLancey was a prominent New Yorker whose family had been one of influence in the colonies for many years. An open and dedicated supporter of King George III, DeLancey was commissioned as a Brigadier-General of the Royal Provincial Forces on 21 September 1776. He would eventually become the senior Loyalist Officer of the British Army.
Drawing upon his considerable personal wealth, DeLancey raised and equipped a brigade of three battalions consisting of 1500 loyalist volunteers from New York City, Long Island, Westchester and Fairfield counties to form the famous DeLancey's Brigade. Garrisoned in the New York area the DeLancey's guarded supply wagons, formed foraging parties, acted as a New York City police force and took part in numerous skirmishes within this area. In 1778 the first two battalions of DeLancey's were sent to Florida to join in the Southern Campaigns.
The figure in red uniform to the right represents DeLancey's brigade. Their facings were of dark blue and had no lace.
All of the men who remained in DeLancey's Brigade at the end of the war were granted land in Woodstock parish, Nova Scotia. James was, however, only in the battalion for a short time. "Impelled by distress, severity of treatment, and by duty," he resigned in 1777. This was before they went south to the campaigns there.
During the war, from at least May 1778 until the evacuation of British troops at the end of the war, in November 1783, the Reverend James Sayre was regularly stationed at the Episcopal Church in Brooklyn and preached, as thirty or more of his manuscript sermons, endorsed "Brooklyn Church," attest.
There is however, from the Roll of Officers of the British American or Loyalist Corps, a reference to a Rev. James Sayre, Chaplain, 3rd New Jersey Volunteers, 10 June 1783. Apparently he was kept on the books even though, in his own eyes, he had resigned. Also, from a list of Properties Confiscated in New York after the Revolution, is the name "Sayre, James Rev."
At the end of the war James went with his brother, John, to New Brunswick and bought a plot of land there. He was back in the United States by 1786 when, on 27 August 1786, he was hired by the Newport Rhode Island Trinity Church to lead the congregation. He began his ministry on 1 October 1786. Two years later James fell out of favor with the people of Newport, Rhode Island for his refusal to accept the authority of the Episcopal Church of America. Reference the books, below:
Sayre, James. A Candid Narrative of Certain Matters Relating to Trinity-Church in New-Port . . ." Fairfield, Conn.: Printed by Forgue and Bulkeley, 1788.
Sayre, James. An Address Presented by the Rev. James Sayre, A. M. . . ." Newport, R.I.: Printed by Henry Barber, 1789.
Bours, John. An Appeal to the Public: In Which the Misrepresentations and Calumnies, Contained in a Pamphlet, Entitled, A Narrative of Certain Matters Relative to Trinity Church, in Newport, in the State of Rhode-Island, by a Very Extraordinary Man, the Rev. James Sayre, A.M. Late Minister of Said Church, Are Pointed Out, and His Very Strange Conduct, During the Time of His Ministration at Newport, Faithfully Related. Newport: 1789.
James during the winter of 1788-1789. After this conflict James appears to have moved on to Fairfield [Stratford?], Connecticut, where he became the Rector, but he did not leave conflict behind. In 1792 the Reverend James Bowden, professor of moral philosophy, belles-lettres, and logic at Columbia College, wrote "An Address to the Episcopal Church in Stratford" successfully urging the adoption of the altered "Book of Common Prayer," to which the rector of Stratford, Rev. James Sayre, was violently opposed. Having lost this debate, James moved to Woodbury, Connecticutt. Tradition says that at this point he joined another denomination.
Sarah died on 15 December 1797 followed by James on 18 February 1798, at the age of 53, in Fairfield, Connecticut. He was buried in the Old Fairfield cemetary. His wife, Sarah, a daughter, Elizabeth (age 18), and a son, James Dennie (age 16), were buried there as well.a name="Ester Bowes Sayre">(20) Ester Bowes Sayre (1747)
She was born on 30 July 1747. She married William Augustus Atlee. She died on 5 July 1790 at Elizabeth, New Jersey.The Sayre Family of Ohio
Daniel Sayre, below, was a brother of Joseph Sayre, whose descendents included Francis Bowes Sayre. Daniel's descendents included Serena Sayre, who married Abner Hissem.(17) Daniel Sayre (a1630)
He was born sometime between 1620 and 1633 in Bedfordshire, England. He was a weaver. He is named in lists of Southampton, England in 1657. He was also in a whaling squadron from 1657 to 1667. He married Hannah Foster in about 1666/7. She was born in 1638 in Lynn, Essex, Massachusetts, the daughter of Christopher and Francis Foster. Hannah died before 1707 in Southampton, Suffolk, New York. Daniel died on 13 April 1708 in Southampton, Suffolks county, New York, on Long Island. His will:
"In the name of God Amen. The 21st day of August 1707 I Dan Sayre of Southampton in the County of Suffolk and province of New York husbandman being aged and crased in body but of perfect mind and memory thanks be given unto God therefor, calling unto mind the mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed for all men once to dye, do make and ordain this my last will and testament, that is to say Principally and first of all I give and recommend to the earth my body to be buried in decent Christian Buriall at the discretion of my executor and as touching such worldly estate Whearwith it hath pleased God to bless me in this life. I give Demise and dispose of the same in the following manner & forme vistTheir children were Joseph, Daniel, Samuel, David, Ephraim, Nathan, and Mary. (18) Samuel Sayre (c1669)
1sth. Imprimis I give & ffreely bequeath unto Joseph Sayre Daniell Sayre Hannah Topping the wife of Mr Josiah Topping and my son Samuel Though deced yet his children come in for his equall part with his Brethern with my son David Sayre to these I give my Tow negro slaves called by the names of Gordg and Moll. These to be sold by my son-in-law Josiah Toppin and my son Daniel Sayre and the money that they fetch is to be equally devided amongst my children before named and Samuells children are to divid his fift part equally between them.
2ly. I give to my son Ephrem (Ephraim) Sayre 5 shillings in currt money of New York as an adddition to what he hath already Received.
3ly I give and frely Bequeath unto my son Nathan Sayre and to his heires & assigns for Ever my dwelling house Barn & Buildings, Lands, meadows comonages & all my estate movable & immovable personally & Reall that I am possessed of at the time of my departure out of this life By the sd Nathan Sayre his heires & assigns to be possessed & injoyed and do constitute make and ordaine the sd Nathan Sayre my sole Exr of this my last Will & Testament to have & receive all my estate Whatsoever & to pay out these Legases Before mentioned according to the true intent & meaning hearof and I do hereby utterly Disallow, Revoak and Disannull all & every other former Testaments, Wills Leaggecies and Bequeasts & Exrs By me in any ways before named Willed & Bequeathed Ratifying & Constituting this & no other to be my last will & Testament In Witness wearof I have hereunto sett My hand and seale the day and year above written.
Dan'l Sayre (L.S.)
Signed Sealed published pronounced & declared by the sd Daniell Satre as his last Will & Testament in the presence of us the Subscribers.
It is likewise my desire the my negro woman may have Liberty to chuse her master when sheis sold & that she may have all her cloathes and her box and all her things with her."
Probated April 13, 1708
He was born in Southampton, Long Island. He married Hannah Lyon[s] and at some point left Long Island to establish his own homestead in northern New Jersey. He may have been a juror in the 1682 court at Salem, Massachusetts, and one who signed, with others, the "humble and solemn declaration of regret for the part they had borne in the witch trials." - from "Salem Witchcraft," by Charles W. Upham. He died before 20 August 1707 in Elizabeth, Essex county, New Jersey, predeceasing his father.(19) Daniel Sayre (c1700)
He may have been born as early as 1685. In 1700 he was living in Elizabeth, Essex county, New Jersey working as a blacksmith. In 1755 he fought in the French and Indian Wars. He married Rebecca Bond, the daughter of Benjamin and Susan Bond. He died on 17 April 1760. Their children included Sarah, David, Benjamin, Jedidiah, and John.(20) David Sayre (1736)
He was born on 30 May 1736 in Essex county, New Jersey. He was a Revolutionary War verteran. He married Hannah Frazier [Frazee] in 1758. She was born on 23 January 1741 in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Ephraim Frazee and Rebecca Cutter. He was a blacksmith at the time of his brother's will in 1765. He received 10 acres of land from his father's will - "10 acres of land, to be taken between what I gave him by deed, and land I sold to Zopher Cory."
He moved to Monongalia county, Virginia before the close of the 18th century where he purchased large tracts of land. He later moved west to Ohio. Hannah died on 31 January 1826 and David followed not long after on 11 July 1826 in Letart Falls, Meigs county, Ohio. Their children were Daniel, David, John, Rachel, Ephraim, Jedediah, Benjamin, Thomas, Rebecca, Moses and Sarah.(21) John Sayre (c1764)
The third son of Daniel. He married Susannah Ferrell [Sutton?]. Her parents were Captain Robert S. Ferrell, a Revolutionary War veteran, and Hannah. John's brother, Jedediah, settled in Pleasants Creek, Tyler county, West Virginia. His brother, Benjamin, settled on Middle Island Creek, West Virginia.(22) Robert Sayre (1788)
Robert, the son of John and Susannah Sayre, was born on 29 January 1788 in Monongalia County, Virginia [now West Virginia]. He married Martha Jones on 12 March 1812 in Gallia County, Ohio. Martha was born on 26 September 1794, the daughter of Seth and Sarah (Pitts) Jones. Robert was a farmer in Meigs County, where he died. He is mentioned in Banta's book on the descent of the Sayre Family. Meigs County, Ohio, Probate Records, Files 212 and 932 indicate he died on 2 August 1827. His will was probated 24 September 1827. Martha was listed in the 1840 Meigs County census with a male and four other females in the household. Martha died on 16 June 1843. Her burial was in Letart Falls Cemetery, Meigs, Ohio. Robert and Martha (Jones) Sayre were parents of Maria, Hannah, Susan, Sarah, John, Serena, and Martha.(23) Serena Sayre (1823)
She was born on 6 October 1823, in Ohio. She married Abner Hissam on 6 February 1852.