Jeremy ADAMS

Jeremy ADAMS

Male Abt 1611 - 1683  (~ 72 years)

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  • Name Jeremy ADAMS 
    Born Abt 1611  England Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Immigration 1633  Cambridge, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Living 1636  Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Died 11 Aug 1683  Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I36967  FamilyWorld
    Last Modified 10 Dec 2011 

    Family 1 Rebecca BASEDEN,   d. Abt 1682 
    Married Abt 1637 
     1. John ADAMS,   b. Abt 1637, Wethersfield, Hartford County, Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 6 Sep 1670, Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 33 years)
     2. Hannah ADAMS,   b. Abt 1639
     3. Hester ADAMS,   b. Abt 1641,   d. Aft 16 Jul 1653  (Age ~ 12 years)
     4. Sarah ADAMS,   b. Abt 1643
     5. Samuel ADAMS,   c. 23 Nov 1645, Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. Bef 16 Jul 1653  (Age ~ 7 years)
    Last Modified 10 Dec 2011 
    Family ID F12122  Group Sheet

    Family 2 Rebecca FLETCHER,   d. 25 Jun 1715, Middletown, Middlesex County, Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married Abt 1683  Connecticut Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Last Modified 10 Dec 2011 
    Family ID F12126  Group Sheet

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsBorn - Abt 1611 - England Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsImmigration - 1633 - Cambridge, Middlesex County, Massachusetts Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsLiving - 1636 - Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsMarried - Abt 1683 - Connecticut Link to Google Earth
    Link to Google MapsDied - 11 Aug 1683 - Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut Link to Google Earth
     = Link to Google Maps 
     = Link to Google Earth 

  • Photos
    'The Puritan' 1899 Augustus Saint-Gaudens
    "The Puritan" 1899 Augustus Saint-Gaudens

  • Notes 
    • The origins of Jeremy Adams are unknown. He migrated in 1633, first to Cambridge, Massachusetts, and to Hartford, Connecticut by 1636. Jeremy Adams was an Innkeeper. "On 13 March 1661/2 the Connecticut General Court ordered that, 'upon the motion and desire of Jeremiah Adams, that the house that the said Jer: doth now possess and improve for an ordinary, or house of common entertainment, shall be and remain for the same end and use and occupation for the future, both to the said Jeremie an his successors,' with four conditions attached [CCCR 1:378]. On 14 May 1663, the same court established 'Jeramie Adams to be Custom Master for Hartford, and the liberty granted unto Jonathan Gilbert by the Particular Court, is repealed, respecting customing his own wines, liquors, &c.' [CCCR 1:401]."

      Jeremy Adams was admitted to the Cambridge church by 1635. He was a member of Captain Mason's party to deal with the "Warranocke Indians" in 1638.

      "In the Cambridge land inventory on 10 October 1635 Jeremy Adams held four parcels of land: one rood in Cowyard Row; one acre and one rood in Old Field; two acres in the Great Marsh; and two acres on Small Lot Hill [CaBOP 26]. (Adams had presumably sold this land by 1 May 1636, for on that date John Talcott, selling his own land before his removal to Hartford, described his parcel of land in the Old Field as abutting 'the land late of Jeremy Addams northwest' [CaBOP 37].

      "In the Hartford land inventory of February 1639/40 Jeremy Adams held six parcels: 'one parcel for a houselot fallen into the town's hands & by him recovered & settled upon him by the inhabitants of this town containing by estimation two acres'; three acres and two roods in the South Meadow; two acres on the east side of the Great River; one rood and three perches in the Little Meadow; eight acres of upland; and two acres in the Great Swamp [HaBOP 207-08]. (Additional land transaction of Jeremy Adams in Hartford are recorded in HaBOP 34, 93, 94, 169-70, 208-10, 265, 360, 368, 401, 420, 432, 550, 552, 565.)

      "By virtue of his marriage to the widow of Samuel Greenhill, Jeremy Adams became guardian of his two children, Thomas and Rebecca Greenhill, and therefore had possession during their minority of the land granted by Hartford to Samuel Greenhill, which land belonged 'two-thirds part of each parcel to Thomas Greenhill when the said Thomas is of twenty years of age; and one-third part to Rebecka Greenhill when the said Rebecka shall be of twenty years of age which land belongeth to the said Thomas & Rebecka Greenhill abovesaid at that time & in that proportion by the last will & testament of Samuel Greenhill their father deceased & to their heirs forever' [HaBOP 202; see also CCCR 1:360].

      "On 16 Jul 1653 Thomas Greenhill made his will, in which he gave to his mother 'Rebeckah Addams' the use of all his land during her natural life, and at her decease one-half of his lands to 'her children, that is to say, to her son John Addams & to her 3 daughters, Hanna, Hester & Sarah,' and the other half to 'my sister Rebeckah Shepherd's two children, John and Rebeckah Shepherd,' unless these two children die without issue before their mother, in which case the mother is to inherit one-half his land [Manwaring 1:119].

      "As might be expected, this will sowed the seeds of dispute, and in later years John Shepherd and his wife, the former Rebecca Greenhill, pursued their perceived rights vigorously in the Connecticut courts. They argued that Thomas Greenhill was not yet twenty-one when he made his will, that the will was therefore void, and that Thomas Greenhill had in fact died intestate. They then argued that an intestacy all the estate of Thomas Greenhill should fall to his only full sibling, the wife of John Shepherd, and that his half-siblings, the children of Jeremy Adams, should get nothing. The dispute carried on into the third generation and into the eighteenth century, but was in the end unsuccessful. The documents produced in this case have much useful information beyond the immediate matter of the descent of the land [Connecticut Archives, Private Controversies, Series One, 2:1-18, 177-84].

      "Some of these documents have been summarized in print in conjunction with the will of Thomas Greenhill [Manwaring 1:119-20], but not always accurately. In particular, a brief item with the heading 'No. 1 of Index, Vol. II, P.C.' misreads the nineteenth-century index to these papers. The statement that Jeremy Adams had three children by the widow of Samuel Greenhill, namely John, Hannah and Sarah, comes from Volume II, folio 17, of the Private Controversies, Series One, a copy of a court order of 30 May 1682; Manwaring inaccurately and incompletely summarized this document immediately after the incorrect index extract. The last statement of the index extract, that John Adams was 'age 33 years 29 May, 1683,' is from a deposition of that date made by John Adams of Wethersfield, a different Adams family altogether [Connecticut Archives, Private Controversies, Series One, 2:80].

      "As if the financial affairs of Jeremy Adams were not already complicated enough, he was frequently in debt, and mortgaged his house to the colony, which eventually foreclosed on the mortgage, but after the death of Adams conveyed the property to Zachary Sanford, who had married a granddaughter of Adams [CCCR 1:357, 361, 3:145, 172, 343; HaBOP 208-10].

      "On 13 March 1661/2 Connecticut court granted to Jeremy Adams '300 acres of upland and 40 acres of meadow, in the place where he kept cattle last winter, going to Monhegin' [CCCR 1:376]; this may be related to the ordeer, made at the same court, that Adams was to run the ordinary at Hartford.

      "In his will, dated 4 August 1683 and proved 6 September 1683, 'Jeremy Addams of Hartford' noted that he had 'formerly given to my grandson Zachary Sandford my oxpasture lot in the way to Weathersfield' and confirmed that gift, and also bequeathed to Zachary Sandford 'the lot that I have at the wolf pound by Mr. Webster's'; the residue of his estate he 'equally divided to my grandchildren, the one half to my son John Adams his children & the other half to my son Willett's children'; he appointed Nath[aniel] Willett executor, and Major John Talcott and John John Allyn overseers [Hartford PD Case #32; Manwaring 1:267; see also HaBOP 9, 291]. 'The inventory of the estate of Mr. Jeremyah Addams who deceased Agust [sic] 11 1683' totalled L243 5s. 6d., of which L81 was real estate: '3 acres of upland on the east side of the Great River in reversion,' L20; '242 acres of upland on the east side of the river,' L24; 'eight acres of land near Mr. Robert Webster's land,' L16; and '30 acres of land in the west division,' L3 [Hartford PD Case #32]."

      "Arthur Adams published a genealogy of Jeremy Adams in three successive volumes of 'The Yearbook of the Atlantic County (New Jersey) Historical Society' (1950, 1951, 1952), and then reprinted this material, with corrections and additions, as 'Jeremy Adams of Cambridge, Mass., and Hartford, Conn., and His Descendants' (Boston 1955), cited in this sketch as Adams Gen. Adams reported that he had searched for forty years for the English origin of Jeremy Adams, and although he had found some likely candidates, could not find positive proof for any of them (page 2).

      "Savage's statement that Jeremy Adams first resided in Braintree implies that he believed that Adams was among the advance party of Hooker's adherents who came to New England in 1632 and attempted to settle on the site of what would later become Braintree, before they were ordered to move elsewhere. This is probably based on the inclusion of Jeremy Adams in the 7 January 1632/3 list of those to supply fencing [CaTR 5], but this list is known to have been created at a later date.

      "Savage includes a first wife before the widow of Samuel Greenhill, on the basis of his proposed early birthdates for the first two children of Jeremy Adams, but these children need not have been born as early as Savage claimed, and could easily have been born to Rebecca (Baseden) (Greenhill) Adams. Aside from the baptism of Samuel, we have no direct evidence for the birthdates of any of the children. If we assume that the other four children named in the 16 July 1653 will of Thomas Greenhill are listed in birth order [Manwaringh 1:119], and if we arrange them at two years intervals prior to the birth of Samuel, we get the sequence given above. Since Samuel Greenhill died within two years of his arrival in 1634, Jeremy Adams could have married his widow in time to have a child born in 1637. And since the marriage record for John supposedly claims that he was under age in 1657 when he married, he might even be placed a year or two later.

      "Some sources claim that Jeremy Adams had another daughter who married Robert Sanford, to justify the bequest by Adams to his 'grandson' Zachary Sanford [e.g., NEHGR 59:316], Powers-Banks 55-59], but this is not correct, since Zachary Sanford had married Sarah Willet, daughter of Nathaniel and Sarah (Adams) Willet. This is made clear in the dispute between the Greenhill and Adams heirs over the estate of Thomas Greenhill, when Zachary Sanford makes the claim 'in right of his wife' [Manwaring 1:119].

      "On 5 March 1644/5, the General Court of Connecticut ordered that Jeremy Adams appear at the next court to be censured for 'adhering to Tho: Osmor in his misapprehensions about the execution, and giving him encouragement by provoking speeches to resist the officer, but especially his passionate distempered speeches, loud language & unmannerly carriage in the face of the Court, to the great offense of the beholders' [CCCR 1:123]; there is no record of further action in this matter."

    • Jeremy Adams came from England with Rev. Mr. Hooker's Company. This company settled first at Braintree, but removed soon to Cambridge, Mass., then called Newtown, where Jeremy was as early as 1632. He was made freeman at Cambridge, May 6, 1635, and the Proprietors' Records of the town show that he was in possession of a house4-lot there in Oct. of the same year.

      On the removal of Mr. Hooker's Company to Hartford, in 1636, Jeremy Adams was one of the number, and became an original proprietor of that town; and, according to Mr. Hinman, he was a juror and deeputy to the General Court in 1638. Apr. 5, 1638, he was sent, with Capt. Mason and four others, but the General Court, to treat with the Indians, and to trade with them for corn. In the land division of 1639, he received thirty acres on the highway, now Elm street; and was constable that year.

      About 1639, he married first, Rebecca, widow of Samuel Greenhill, perhaps as a second wife. Greenhill had come from Staplehurst, Co. Kent, England, in the same ship with Simon Willard.

      His wife Rebecca died in 1678, and he married second, Rebecca, widow of Andrew Warner, Jr., and daughter of John Fletcher. Jeremy Adams died Aug. 11, 1683. The house of his executor, Nathaniel Willet, was burned, and in it all the books and papers of the deceased. His widow survived him, although not mentioned in his will, and died in Middletown, Jan. 25, 1715, aged 77.


  • Sources 
    1. [S60] Great Migration: Immigrants to New England, 1634-1635.

    2. [S23] NEHGS, website:, Vol. 59, pgs. 315-316.