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Amzi Doolittle (1737-1830)

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Amzi DoolittleEdit

Name variationsEdit

  • Amzia
  • Amazia

Vital statisticsEdit

PedigreeEdit

Amzi Doolittle was the son of Benjamin Doolittle (1695-1749) and Lydia Todd (1699-1792).


Spouse(s)Edit

  1. Jerusha Smith (1742-1844) m1 1757; divorced by 1787; she m2 Amos Marsh (1733-????)
  2. Hannah Miller (1748-1826) (divorced wife of Thomas Barber (1742-1819)); m2 1787

OffspringEdit

(by first wife)

  1. Electa Doolittle (1760-1820) m. 1778 Caleb Rich (1750-1821)
  2. Lavina Doolittle (1761-????) m. c 1778 Moses Hix (c1734-c1822)
  3. Luther Doolittle (1764-1821) m. 1781 Mary Hazelton (1767-1852)
  4. Lucy Doolittle (1765-1805) m. c 1785 John Hazelton (1759-1822)
  5. Amzi Doolittle, Jr. (1768-1863) m. 1788 Esther Barber (1768-1853)
  6. Junia Doolittle (1770-1791)
  7. Origin Doolittle (1773-1856) m. 1798 Hannah Barber (1775-1858)
  8. Roswell Doolittle (1775-1863) m. 1806 Clarissa Burt (1783-1858)
  9. Jerusha Doolittle (1777-1863) m. 1807 Willard Taft (????-????)

BiographyEdit

Early life and educationEdit

His father was a reverend who stirred up controversy of his own in Northfield, Massachusetts. Amzi's father died when Amzi was 10.

Military serviceEdit

  • 1756: belonged to the Northfield foot company. In October of that year, when the news of Montcalm's victories was received, he with 16 others was drafted out of the company to serve under General Winslow; but whether the men went into active service at the time is not recorded.
  • 1774: as Ensign, included in a company of 50 minute men raised by the town September 5.

CareerEdit

As one of the first settlers of Warwick, Massachusetts, he played several roles and held several prominent positions:

  • 1760: one of a committee to lay out a tract of land around the meeting house for a burial place and other purposes
  • 1763: At the first town meeting held May 9, selected town treasurer
  • 1767: Selectman
  • 1776: Selectman

Family lifeEdit

On 6 Dec 1757, in Northfield, MA, he married Jerusha Smith (1742-1844), daughter of Samuel Smith (1705-1799) and Sarah Morton (1707-1767). Shortly after, they moved to Warwick, MA-- perhaps attracted by the bounty offered to attract families to the new town. He had, by Jerusha, nine children between 1760 and 1777.

During the Revolutionary War, the entire family was broken up by the preachings of one "Elder Hix" (probably Moses Hix) who preached that men and women could have spiritual spouses as well as temporal:

  • Hix ran off with their daughter, Lavina
  • Amos Marsh ran off with Amzi's wife, Jerusha
  • Amzi ran off with Hannah Miller, wife of Thomas Barber

Hix and Amzi's daughter moved to Hoosick, New York by 1790. Hannah appears to have returned to Thomas for awhile, although Jerusha appears not to have returned to Amzi. Amzi sold his property in Warwick, and moved with his unmarried children (Electa stayed in Warwick with Caleb Rich) to Townshend, Vermont by late 1782. Interestingly enough, Thomas and Hannah (Miller) Barber also moved to Townshend, VT around the same time. The two families lived next to each other, and sold land between each other; two of Amzi's sons married two of Thomas and Hannah's daughters.

Amzi married, in Townshend, in October 1787, his "spiritual" mate, Hannah (Miller) Barber. They remained in Townshend until the death of Thomas Barber, then moved with those of their children who had married each other (Amzi Jr and Esther; Origin and Hannah) to Winchester, NH.

Hannah died in 1826; Amzi died in 1830. They are buried side by side in Evergreen Cemetery, Winchester, NH.

Spiritual lifeEdit

The Doolittles, while in Warwick, were referred to as a prominent Baptist family-- controversial for the time and location. (Massachusetts was still predominantly Puritan/Congregrationalist.) They were apparently convinced of Universalism by its founder Caleb Rich, who married their oldest daughter, Electa, in January 1778. And the entire family was affected by the preaching of one "Elder Hix" who preached that men and women had spiritual as well as temporal spouses, and "when so moved to love one another, there is no criminality in the connection." It is unknown if Amzi was involved in the church at Townshend, VT, or the church in Winchester, NH.

Related entriesEdit


ContributorsEdit

Jillaine

SourcesEdit

  1. Jonathan Blake, Jr., History of the Town of Warwick, MA; Boston, MA, USA: Noyes, Holmes, & Co., 1873; LDS FHL microfilm #1321383, item 4.
  2. Josiah Gilbert Holland, History of Western Massachusetts, Springfield, MA: S. Bowles, 1855
  3. Charles Morse, Warwick Massachusetts: Biography of a Town, Cambridge, MA: Dresser, Chapman & Grimes, 1973, pp. 88-90.
  4. Louis H. Everts, History of the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts, Volume II, 1879.
  5. J.H. Temple and G.A. Sheldon, History of the Town of Northfield, MA, Albany, N.Y.: J. Munsell, 1875.
  6. Chris Anderle, "Caleb Rich and the Founding of the Universalist Church in America," www.andrle.com/chris/rich.htm; 1998.
  7. Peter Hughes, "Caleb Rich," Unitarian Universalist Association; www.uua.org/uuhs/duub/articles/calebrich.html.
  8. Warwick Vital Records.
  9. William F. Doolittle, The Doolittle Family in America, Cleveland: 1901.
  10. Elijah Ellsworth Brownell, E.E. Brownell Collection, unpublished multi-volume manuscript filmed by the LDS in 1963, Film #0333573.
  11. U.S. Federal Census
  12. Townsend Proprietor’s book, page 13; October 8, 1782.
  13. James H. Phelps, Collections relating to the History and Inhabitants of the Town of Townsend, Vermont, Brattleboro: Geo. E. Selleck; 1877.
  14. Land Deeds of Townsend, VT.
  15. Gravestone readings, Evergreen Cemetery, Winchester, NH.


External linksEdit

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