Category: Families

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A very Sperry visit to Woodbridge in the summer of 1895

Reading the book Bethany and Its Hills recently, I came across a retelling of another storied visit to Sperry lands in old Woodbridge. The tale is told beginning on page 21 of the book, which can be read online. This account was apparently taken from portions of a news article published in the New Haven Morning Journal and Courier newspaper of July 29th 1895, which is…

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Sperry family in Woodbridge

Richard Sperry is said to have been the first European settler to live in what is now Woodbridge, arriving in New Haven in 1643 and farming the land here in Woodbridge possibly as early as 1648. According to page 181 of The Descendants of Thomas Dickerman: Richard Sperry was among the early settlers of New Haven, though not one of the original planters.…

Dickerman family in Woodbridge

Descendants of Thomas Dickerman An early settler of Dorchester, Massachusetts, Thomas’s son Abraham married Mary Cooper and removed to New Haven in the 1670s. Two of this couple’s daughters married sons of Richard Sperry in the 1680s and thereafter lived in Woodbridge. This book contains information about the families of many of the original settlers of New Haven and Woodbridge. 

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A visit to Sperry Park, June 2015

What a lovely day to visit Sperry Park today. Before setting out, I’m rummaging around for some background information. Let’s start by gathering some old photos, shall we? First we have the photo “Bridge near Sperry’s Mills. Circa 1890.” as published in the Woodbridge Bicentennial Booklet. Under the photo the following text appears: “Handsome gifts have been made to Woodbridge. Sperry…

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Indeed, there are Deeds!

Now that we’ve returned from our Visit to Sperry Park, let’s look now at some documents! The land that makes up both Sperry Park and the adjoining Henry C. Hickox Memorial Park was donated to the Town of Woodbridge in 1907 and 1955, respectively. Just prior to the donation of the Hickox parcel, a map was drawn up from information apparently…

Lines family in Woodbridge

Ralph Lines was one of the first settlers of the land now known as Woodbridge, arriving in the early 1660s. According to page 181 of The Descendants of Thomas Dickerman: “[Yale] President Stiles says that Stephen Goodyear, “a rich settler bought of the town [of New Haven] a tract of a thousand or twelve hundred acres of land in the fertile valley to…

Cooper family in Woodbridge

John Cooper, came to New Haven with the founders, Eaton and Davenport, and died in 1689. According to page 139 of The Descendants of Thomas Dickerman: “New men now came to the front to guide the affairs of the community, and they were men of a different kind ; not so great, but more practical in dealing with everyday concerns. The founders were scholars, thinkers,…

Bradley family in Woodbridge

William Bradley arrives in New Haven in the early 1650s. “According to the family tradition we are descended from William Bradley, an officer of Cromwell’s army, who came to Connecticut about 1650, and was the first settler of the town of North Haven. His son was Abraham Bradley, a deacon in the church of New Haven.” — from page 582…

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Johnson family in Woodbridge

Clues to the origin of the Johnson clan in Connecticut can be found in Families of Ancient New Haven by Donald Lines Jacobus. On page 1029 he states: “Three Johnson brothers, said to have come from Hull, Yorkshire, England, settled early in New Haven, Connecticut; these were John, who removed to Rowley, Massachusetts and died in 1641 leaving issue; Robert (see Family…