Saturday, October 30, 2010


John Robinson, father of Abiathar? From Weathersfield, Vt

Living with the Tuller family in Royalton, Windsor, Vermont in 1850 was a John Robinson age 51, farmer. Was he just a helping hand, boarder, or was he family? At the time Julia Ann was 15 years old and Abiathar would have ben 21.

I found a John Robinson on the 1840 census, not in Royalton, but in Weathersfield, Windsor, Vermont. He was from age 30-39 and had a son from 10-14 years of age, one from 5-9 years of age and one under 5. He had a wife of the same age as he, a daughter 15-19 and another under 5 besides having another female 40-49 years old and yet another 60-69. There were 9 people in the family altogether. Could this be the John living with the Tullers? Where was his family other than Abiathar?

Robinsons were found in a cemetery in Royalton, Vermont. Howe or Hickey Cemetery on the North Road in Royalton, VT was sold in 1795 by Abijah Burbank to a local committee, Luther Fairbanks and Nathan Page, whose families, with those of Theodore Howe and the Dunhams, Bowens. Beldings, Banisters, and Robinsons, are buried here, their stones now over­grown and falling. Besides Timothy Banister (?), Revolutionary veterans buried here are James Huntington, Kiles Paul, and Israel Waller.

Durkees were found in North Royalton Cemetery which also had burials before the raid. The greatest number of early burials are here, many with hand some slate stones. Revolutionary veterans known to be buried here are, besides Timothy Durkee, Matthew Atherton, Stephen Backus, John Billings, Samuel Clapp Jr., Benjamin Day, Heman Durkee, John Hibbard Jr., John H. Hutchin­son, Zebulon Lyon, Benjamin Parkhurst, Isaac Pinney, Jeremiah Russ, lsaac Skinner, Isaac Walbridge, Zachariah Waldo, and Ebenezer Woodward Sr.

Havens Cemetery, land sold to Dist. 2 in 1812 by Daniel and Ira Havens; it had already been in use at least ten years. Revolutionary veterans: David Ames, Thomas Bingham, Samuel Howe, Na­thaniel Morse, John Root, Jeremiah Trescott, and William Waterman. Holly Waterman is my 4th cousin and has been a huge help in searching and working on our genealogy.

Tunbridge is just a little ways away from Royalton, VT but in Orange County. It's where Abaithar and Julia Ann got married in 1852. Tunbridge was first settled in 1776. It is 26 miles S. by E. from Montpelier, 7 S. from Chelsea, and 30 N. by W. from Windsor. Population, 1830, 1,920.

Royalton Indian Raid-continued from Zadoc Steele's Book

Timothy Durkee's family suffered from the burning of Royalton. Heman, being the oldest child of his family, remained in the town while all of his siblings moved to New York except Harvey. Heman was my 4th great grandfather. Timothy's grandchildren spread out far and wide into Pennsylvania, New York, Wisconsin, Texas, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, Odelltown, Canada, Iowa and of course, Vermont.

1779 was the year Royalton was chartered. The town was in good condition with large stocks of cattle grazing in their fields. It was a friendly town. On the morning of the 16th of October 1780, before dawn, 300 hundred Indians of various tribes approached. They were led by the Caghnewago tribe and had left Canada with the goal of destroying Newbury, a town on the Connecticut River in the eastern part of Vermont. A British Lieutenant Horton was the commander, and a Frenchman, Le Mott was his 2nd. Their pilot or leader was Hamilton, a former prisoner of Americans in 1777 at the taking of Burgoyne. He had been at Newbury and Royalton in the last summer on parole of honor and had escaped to the enemy.

They managed to make camp at Tunbridge, not far from Royalton on Sunday. They entered Royalton on Monday and went into the house of John Hutchinson who lived not far from the line between Royalton and Tunbridge. They took him and his brother, Abijah prisons and plundered the house. Then they went into the house of Robert Havens, who lived a little ways from Hutchinson. Havens was out in his pasture after his sheep and when on a hill heard his neighbor's dog barking and realized what had happened. Then he saw a group of Indians going into his house, so he hid under a log and cried, knowing his family was in there. He heard his wife scream and his sons running for their lives. The Indians chased after Thomas Pember, who had been courting Havens's daughter, and threw a spear at him which pierced his body, but he continued to run until loss of blood killed him. He was speared again and scalped.

Haven's home became their station. Elias Button was walking down the road and saw the approaching Indians so ran from them but they overtook the young man and speared and then scalped him. Next they went to the home of Joseph Kneeland and his father who lived about a 1/2 mile from Havens. There they also found Simeon Belknap, Giles Gibbs and Jonathan Brown. They took these five men prisoners. Then they went to the house of Elias Curtis and took him and his friends John Kent and Peter Mason. Mrs. Curtis was still dressing herself while sitting on her bed when the Indians entered her bedroom. She was attacked by an Indian with a large knife who grabbed her neck but was distracted by her gold beaded necklace, and he spared her life. Instead he took her beads. They told the prisoners to be quiet or be killed. The Indians plundered every house. They took horses they found, but the horses were frightened and didn't help them very much.

General Elias Stevens, who lived in the first house on the river, had gone down the river about two miles and was working with his oxen and cart when a neighbor approached calling out to him, "For God's sake, turn out your oxen, for the Indians are at the mill!" So he did and got on his horse to return to his family when he was met by Captain Joseph Parkhurst who told him that the Indians were nearby. He couldn't get to his family in time, he was told. They came to the house of Deacon Daniel Rix and took Mrs Rix and several of her children with him on his horse. Captain Parkhurst took Mrs. Benton and her children on his horse and they all rode off with Deacon Rix and others on foot. He decided to leave Mrs Rix and the children with Mr. Burroughs and left for home when he saw the Indians, came back to the group he had left and told them to get into the woods and hide. The Indians stayed on the road chasing General Stevens. He passed the house of Mr. Tilly Parkhurst, his father-in-law and saw his sister milking by the barn and told her to leave or the Indians would have her. Now the road was full of the Indians. Stevens got to his house. He managed to put his mother and sister on his horse, and then with Mrs. Rix and her children, rode off. The Indians took her eldest son from her and told her and the other 5 children to leave. Steven's dog came after him, causing him to stumble and fall so he also had to run to the woods for safety, leaving the women and children. They took 14 yr old Gardner Rix, son of Deacon Rix. They were chased to the house of Mr. Benedict, about a mile away. He hid behind a log. Next Avery, a young man, was made a prisoner.

The Indians killed their prisoner, Joseph Kneeland and scalped him. They killed Giles Gibbs with a tomahawk in the head. Colonel House had become a leader of men who had gathered to fight the Indians but House was a coward and was ineffectual. They never caught the Indians.

So it wasn't just a matter of riding into town on horses and setting fire to homes. It was a mean and bloody affair. However, it didn't deter the few brave people to rebuild and remain. This must have been traumatic for the survivors. No wonder so many left Royalton.

Resource: Durkee Family Newsletter, Bolume XII #1, Spring 1993.



The Burning of Royalton, Vermont Oct. 16, 1780 with Timothy Durkee

The Durkees also lived in Royalton, Vermont. Julia Ann, Tuller, my ggreat grandmother, was born there in 1834. My ggreat grandmother, Julia Ann Tuller's mother, was Asenath Durkee b: 1814-1816, daughter of Heman Durkee b: 1789 son of Col. Heman Durkee b: 1759 . His father was Timothy Durkee was born on May 1, 1737 in Pomfret, Connecticut but moved to Royalton in 1770 or perhaps 1776. The Revolution was starting then. Timothy's distant cousin was Col. John Durkee who was leading his "Sons of Liberty" into battle in Connecticut. Vermont had been part of New Hampshire and part of New York and was just evolving into the 14th state. Settlements were sparse and widely scattered.

Timothy volunteered in their army as a Private and later became Lieutenant and helped in building Fort Fortitude in Bethel, Vermont. He had married Lucy Anna. His children born in Royalton were Lorena, Jirah and perhaps a Thomas who died while young. Royalton was settled in 1770 and Timothy was an origianl proprietor when the town was chartered in 1781.

October 1780 was when the "burning of Royalton" by Indians happened. Three or more of Timothy's children were captured in this Indian raid. Andrew and Sheldon were freed because of Mrs. Hendee, but the older Adin was taken by Indians to Montreal where he died in the camp on December 19, 1780 at age 20. The oldest son, Heman, was not captured as he evidently was elsewhere at the time of the raid. Harvey, age 7, must have been with him as he was not captured, either.

Timothy died in March 1797 just before his 60th birthday. His tombstone says: "In Memory of Lt. Timothy Durkee, d: March 22, 1797, age 59 years, 10 months.

In 1780 Royalton was a fort (a temporary military installation) near the river that was taken down several months before the Indian raid of October 16, 1780. The settlers had not built near it but were strung out in clearings along both sides of the river as far as the First Branch, up that branch to Tunbridge line, and on the north side of the river to the Second Branch. The Indians came down in the First Branch burning buildings and killing livestock, taking men and boys prisoners and killing any who tried to escape. They burned everything on both sides of the river down over Sharon line and up the river to the mouth of the Second Branch. Then the raiding parties met in the meadow near the mouth of the First Branch bringing in their prisoners to Lieutenant Horton (British). Here young Mrs. Handy begged the release of her little boy and 8 others too young to survive the trip to Canada. The raiding party then went north over the hills, picking up more prisonerrs, one of whom was Zadock Steele. His writing has made the names of the Royalton settlers who suffered in the raid well known. Those who were missed in the raid also escaped being passed down in history. I believe there were 5 British soldiers accompaning the Indians on the raid.

Reference: Durkee Family Newsletter page 90-94 Volume XI Winter, 1992

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Royalton, Vermont Robinson Births

Since my ggrandmother, Julia Ann Tuller b: 1834, was found in Royalton, Vermont, I imagine she may have been born there. Here are some known to have been born there.

1. Samuel Robinson son of John Robinson b: 24 June 1852 or 1854
2. Joseph Allen Robinson
3. J.B. Robinson b: 19 April 1845 d: 14 March 1923
4. Walter Allen Robinson with wife Bertha Jane
5. Joseph Robinson b: 25 April 1877

Living in Royalton, Vermont in 1900
1. Lucian Robinson b: May 1847. He was 53 and his father had been born in Canada. My ggrandfather, Abiathar Smith Robinson, had moved to Canada during the Civil War and returned to Illinois when it was over. Lucian's mother was born in Vermont. In 1900 he was single and living in a boarding house/hotel.

Living in Royalton, Vermont in 1920
1. Lucius E. Robinson b: 1849, listed as orphan at age 71, mother from Canada and was one of 5 people listed on the town charge (no job, no money). They were living on the Town Farm.

Rowland Robinson of Rhode Island

It was said that most of the Rhode Island families of Robinson were descended from Rowland Robinson. Records showed that an Amos Robinson, an Indian was probably owned as a slave by the Robinson family of South Kingston, R.I. so I became interested in this town. A lot of Robinsons still lived there in 1930.

On South Kingstown, Washington, Rhode Island 1930 census was:

Frank W. Robinson b: 1852 RI
Samuel Robinson b: 1859 RI
Rowland R. Robinson b: 1863 RI and wife Mary P.H.
Annie I Robinson b: 1870 RI
Percy Robinson b: 1884 RI and wife Bessie
George E Robinson b: 1886 RI
Frank A Robinson b: 1887 RI and wife Sadie Y.
Elisha N Robinson b: 1892 RI and wife Anna P.
Thurston Robinson b: 1894 RI and wife Mildred B.
Mildred E Robinson b: 1897 RI
Frank A. Robinson b: 1897 RI

Friday, October 29, 2010


Vermont's Famous Artist and Writer: Rowland Evans Robinson

Nadene Goldfoot                                       
Rowland Evans Robinson, born 1833 in Ferrisburg, Addison, Vermont to a Quaker family. He not only was a farmer but also a famous artist and prolific writer about Vermont. Artists ran through his family. My great great grandfather was born in 1829 in Vermont but I don't know to who or what city, though he married Julia Ann Tuller of Royalton, Vt. He was very strict about observing the Sabbath and did not allow his son, Frank to rescue a horse out of a field containing a bull on the Sabbath.

His genealogy tree starts with Thomas R. Robinson, a Quaker from Newport, Rhode Island who settled in Vergennes in 1792. He had two children, Abigail and Rowland T (most likely for Thomas) Rowland became a prominent man in Ferrisburg and was an early and uncompromising abolitionist. In 1857 he was appointed town clerk, an office that stayed in the family. He had a son, George G. born 4 March 1825 remained unmarried. who became the clerk. His eldest son, Thomas R. was born in 1823 and died in 1853. Rowland E was born 14 May 1833 and married Anne Stevens of East Montpelier in 1870. He had three children; Rachel, Rowland T and May. Thomas R. Robinson's wife was Charlotte Satterly of Ferrisburgh. They had two children; William G who became a physician in New York, and Sarah.

The home of Rowland Evans Robinson, author, illustrator and naturalist was the family home ever since the 1790's to the 1960's. It looked much like it did at the end of the 19th century and consisted on eight rooms. Now the town has guided tours through it. It's on U.S. routhe 7, near the village. It's called Rokeby which was a station on the Underground Railroad. Rowland had gone blind in his later years and I believe his daughters took over drawing to illustrate his writings.

I found Roland T Robinson b: 1797 on the 1840 census in Addison, Vermont with his wife. There were 12 in the family including a colored person working for the family. This is the first time I've ever found a colored person working in New England. Also on the same census page was Thomas Robinson age 70-80, his father and also his mother of about the same age with a son under 5 and a son from 20-30, and a daughter from 20-30.

I found Rowland Evans Robinson next on the 29 June 1860 Ferrisburg Census listing him as an artist and writer as well as a farmer. He was the author of Danvis Folks, a novel; Vermont: a Study of Independence: Uncle Lisha's shop; and In New England Woods and Fields. He was 27 and had quite a lot of money for this period: $21,600 in land and $4,500 personally. Rachel Robinson age 60 born in Massachusetts lived with him as well as his brother George G, age 35, born in 1825.

Then I found him on the 19 July 1870 Census in Ferrisburgh. He was the youngest of the four children and had begun to draw at an early age. He trained as an engraver and illustrator in N.Y. city in his early 20's. He married Anne Stevens in 1870 and then returned to NY several times looking for work and finallly remained on the family farm which he ran with his brother Geroge. Now he was 37 years old and had $25,000 in land and $5,200 in personal affects.

I found him again on the 1900 census at age 67 and found out that his mother had been born in NY. Anna, his wife was only 58. Daughter Rachel was 21 and listed as an artist, Mary was 16 and her work was unreadable but looked like Amanainsis, Mary S. Putnam age 67 lived with them and was his sister in law, and his son Roland T was 18.

Living next door to them was an Amos B. Robinson age 34 who had been married 5 years to Caroline A 38. They had a daughter Myrtie E, 3 yrs old. Levi Robinson age 67, his uncle and a widower lived with them and helped on the farm.

On the 1910 census of Ferrisburgh, Anna S. Robinson, his wife, was a widow at age 68. She lived with their son, Roland Thomas Robinson age 28, Elizabeth M age 28, Rachel, her daughter age 32 an artist and Molly age 25, also an artist.

By Sept 12, 1918, Rowland Thomas, son, had to register for WWI draft and was 36. He was not only a farmer but also held the post of town clerk like the males in his family. He had married Elizabeth Daroway. He was described as tall and stout with brown hair and eyes.

That brings us to 7 January 1920 census where Rowland was now 37 and listed as a farmer of a general farm. His wife Elizabeth M was now 37. His mother, Anna S lived with them and was now 78.

15 April 1930 census finds Rowland Thomas at age 48 with a dairy farm. His wife, Elizabeth M was also 48 and had taken the position of town clerk in an office.

By 1942 the 2nd World War started and everyone had to register, even Rowland Thomas at age 60. Elizabeth was still alive also.

Rowland Thomas Robinson died on 11 March 1951 in Burlington, Chittenden, Vermont though he still lived in Ferrisburg. He was listed as a farmer and town clerk.

Ferrisburg is on the west border of Central Vermont. Since I haven't found Abiathar Smith Robinson's father, I sort of hoped that we would be connected to this family.

Now I found that most of the Rhode Island familes of Robinson are descended from Rowland Robinson. Records show that an Amos Robinson was an Indian, probably a slave owned by the Robinson family of south Kingston. He served in the Revolution and in 1818 was a pensioner living in Connecticut. It went on to say that this Amos Robinson was born on September 7, 1735 in R.I. Evidently it was his mother that was Indian as his father was thought to be an immigrant or at least his grandfather was. The grandfather moved to Clarendon, Vermont before the revolution. The 1790 census shows that Amos, Amos Jrl, stephen and Stephen Jr were heads of families in Clarendon. They think that Stephen Sr was a brother of Amos. Amos married in 1805 but died August 13, 1809.

Stephen Robinson, Amos's son was born in R.I. on August 24, 1760 and died in Swanton, Vermont on February 29, 1845. He had come to Clarendon, Rutland, Vermont when young and moved to Swanton, Franklin, Vt in 1800. He was a farmer and deacon of the Baptist church for 40 years. His wife was Phebe Butler b: 14 October, 1764 and died 15 March 1840, Her parents were John and Mary Butler.

After checking the many Robinsons I have collected, I find I have Stephen's family! That is very exciting. At one time I thought I was connected but a dna proved me wrong, so I'm still looking for the Robinson connection. However, I know that several of my friends will be very excited about this.


Rowland Robinson of Ferrisburgh, VT, Artist

Life in Vermont 1780-1791

A drawing by Rowland Robinson of Ferrisburgh, Vt.depicts hard-working settlers clearing the forest,dragging the logs to market and burning the remaining wood in pits.from the Rokeby Museum1770 - Green Mountain Boys organized to protect New Hampshire Grants1775 - Ethan Allen captures Fort Ticonderoga1776 - 1783 -Many Native Americans side with British against American colonists1777 - Vermont declares itself a republic in Windsor adopting the 1st Constitution with universal male suffrage, public schools, and abolishing slavery1779 - Property rights established for women1780 - Last major Indian raid, led by the British, in Royalton1783 - Peace Treaty ended the Revolutionary War and 80,000 Loyalists emigrated north to Canada1791 - Vermont becomes 14th state1791 - University of Vermont chartered1791 - Population of Vermont is 85,3411810 - Population of Vermont is 217,895

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New Book About Royalton, Vermont 1780

We Go As Captives:The Royalton Raid and the Shadow War
on the Revolutionary Frontier
By Neil Goodwin

"Royalton, Vermont. October 16, 1780. With no warning and in almost complete silence, a war party of 265 Canadian Mohawks and Abenakis, led by five British and French-Canadian soldiers, materializes from the forest at dawn. They move so fast and so quietly there is no time for anyone to escape and spread the alarm. Prisoners are taken, and the town of Royalton is burned to the ground."
My great grandmother, Julia Ann Tuller was from Royalton. She was found on the census there. She married my ggrandfather, Abiathar Smith Robinson in 1852 in Tunbridge, the next little town. Who Abiathar's parents were, I haven't figured out, but wonder if they had also been from Royalton and were caught in this war. It's something to ponder.
"Garner Rix was captured by the British and Mohawks during the Royalton Raid. The Mohawks took him to Montreal and sold him to a French woman who kept him safe until he could walk home a year later.He went on to clear his own land, build a house, a mill and more roads and raise his own family.He lived in an exciting time and saw more of the world than most boys of his time would ever have wanted to but took that experience and turned it into wonderful tales by the fireside with his grandchildren at his knee."
One of Abiathar Smith Robinson's sons was named Rix Robinson. I wonder if it was for Garner.
  Reference: from Garner Rix and the Royalton Raid by Evelyn Saenz

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Saturday, October 23, 2010


Branch to Bess, Harry S. Truman's Wife

Amos Robinson III b: 1797 of Royalton, Vermont had a daughter named Betsey M. Robinson b: 1824 in Royalton, Vermont. She married George H. Clark b: 1823 in Vermont. I traced this Clark line and if I did it right, for there were many many Clarks, wound up on Bess Wallace's branch.

The first Clark I had thoughtof was the Lewis & Clark Clark, but never stumbled upon him. This was a total surpise to me. So now I plan on going back and rechecking and filling in some blanks on this branch. Oh my!

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Limited Choices for Spouses

Julia Ann Tuller of Royalton, Vermont must have been happy to meet Abiathar Smith Robinson. I'm not sure for sure if he was also born in Royalton, but it must have been somewhere nearby though he did say on one census that he was born in New York. Vermont was created out of part of New York, so he may not have accepted the change. I keep finding people marrying into families of previous generations. I believe they must have depended on neighbors and friends of friends to find mates.

They didn't go far to marry. Their wedding was in Tunbridge, Vermont, a town very close to Royalton. They married on February 29, 1852 when Julia was 18. Abiathar was 23.

To meet and marry they needed transportation, I imagine. They had at that time wagons, sleighs for winter, carriages and horses. The East Coast had a lot more advantages in 1850 than the West had. After 1850 the railroad brought in traveling salesmen and manufactured goods.

By 1857 they had moved to Canada and it was then that their 3rd child was born. I can imagine that this land was far more primitive where Abiathar probably farmed.

They returned to Vermont in 1865 but didn't stay long. 1869 finds they had moved to Wenona, Illinois and stayed there. After having 10 children, Julia died December 2, 1887. Abiathar was a farmer, laborer and teamster in Illinois.

Abiathar remarried Mary Jane Walters, a widow, probably a neighbor in Wenona in 1896 so he waited 9 years to do so. He died in October 1904.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010


Our Rix Connection to Robinson

We have Col. Heman Durkee b: 1759 married to Susanna Rix b: 1764. They lived in Royalton, Vermont. Susanna's sister, Rebecca b: 1772 , married Reverend Abial Jones b: abt 1772. Brother Joseph Johnson Rix b: 1770 married Cynthia Bingham b: 1767. They most likely also lived in Royalton, Vt. Their brother, Garner Rix b: 1767 married Betsy Lyman b: 1767.

Julia Ann Tuller was born in 1834 in Royalton and married Abiathar Smith Robinson b: 1829 somewhere around there as they married a little ways away in Tunbridge, Vermont in 1852. Was he related to Amos Robinson of Royalton, Vermont? I have found that their first child was Rix Robinson b: 1852.

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Royalton Vermont Connections: Durkee, Lee

I am intertwined in your Amos Robinsons of Vermont somehow.

11/9/08 I found a Joseph Lee b: 18 May 1788 in Pomfret, CT with parents Cyrel & Louisa. I've been tracking the Lees of Royalton, VT all day. He's married to Lucy Durkee, daughter of Col Heman Durkee and Susanna Rix.

10/14/10 On the 1850 census in Royalton living with Joseph and Lucy were Laura L. Wheeler 21 b: VT, and Orbira Paddock 20 b: VT, who could be their daughters? Also next door was a younger Lee, George, no doubt their son with his family. Now I have a name for the 2nd son. Joseph was on the same census of 1850 was Amos Robinson b: 1797 Royalton, VT and wife Lois Safford b: 1800 with chldren Cyrus, Dwight, Alfred, Calvin, William and Charles. Joseph is married to Lucy Durkee, daughter of Col. Heman Durkee. Joseph's son, George, is married to Maria Mehitable Durkee, daughter of Timothy Durkee III. The two Durkee women, Lucy and Maria are first cousins once removed.

The Durkees are of my family. Asenath Durkee is on my ggrandfather Abiathar Smith Robinson's family. Asenath is Abiathar's wife Julia Ann Tuller's mother. She had married a Tuller.

I doubt very strongly that these Lees are of the Robert E. Lee line from the south. There are other Lee lines that I have found in the South probably of his family.

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