The family of STEPHEN LEAVITT, printed in the Descendants of Samuel Leavitt on pages 98-99, had been found to contain a few errors many years back. The major one involved his son Samuel, listed in the book as being born in 1784 and dying on 7 Mar 1866. According to Stephen's probate, his son Samuel was still a minor in 1814, so this eliminated the one listed in his place. "Sorting out the Samuels" will be a future entry, but the following research about Stephen and Mehitable Leavitt of Gilford, New Hampshire will be shared, with a reorganization of the family.
Stephen Leavitt was probably born circa 1754 (based on his age during enlistments in Rev. War), a few years off from the 1757 year that Daniel T. Leavitt wrote on 12/17/1877 (and Emily Noyes included in her book). He died on 2 Apr 1812 [D.T.L. letter, 12/17/77] in Gilford (actually still a part of Gilmanton at that time). He was the son of Miles Leavitt, who died at Crown Point on 10 July 1756 while serving during the French & Indian War. He was married to Mehitable Eaton around 1781 (based on birth date of first born child). She died on 15 Jan 1825 [Gilford VR].
In the will of his grandfather Ephraim Leavitt, Stephen was one of four grandchildren (all children of the deceased Miles Leavitt) to receive all the land Ephraim owned in Gilmanton, to be equally divided among them. This included part of the 40-acre lot #27 in the 1st Division, which was sold on 4 Jun 1776 to Paul Bickford [Strafford County Deed, Vol. 3, pg 320]. At this time, Stephen was in Epping, a yeoman. On 5 Feb 1780 [Vol. 3, pg 514], Martha Thurston (and husb Benjamin) sold all of her right to her grandfather's Gilmanton land to her brothers Jonathan and Stephen (another brother, Samuel, had died by 1771). Martha and Stephen were both living in Chichester, NH when this deed was signed. The next deed would be dated 22 Sep 1784 [Vol. 7, pg 119], when Stephen, now a husbandman of Gilmanton, was highest bidder on Lot #2, 5th Range, 2nd Div (original right of Ephraim), which had been put up for sale due to delinquent taxes. On 6 Dec 1784, he sold this [Vol. 7, pg 117] to Ebenezer Smith of Meredith (himself owning 15 acres in said lot). Brothers Jonathan and Stephen also owned Lot #15, 13th Range, in Gilmanton, and jointly purchased Lot #13, 14th Range [Vol. 8, pg 32]. They would partition these properties between themselves on a later date.
Revolutionary War service [War Rolls on Fold3.com]
Only one Stephen Leavitt was known to reside in Epping, NH, so the following service records likely belong to him. He did not file for a pension.
- Stephen of Epping, age 21, husbandman, enlisted 26 May 1775 in Capt. James Norris' Co., 9th NH (Poor's) Regiment; paid off on 1 Aug '75, having served 2 months, 11 days
- Stephen of Epping, age 22, 5 foot, 7 inches tall, black hair and eyes, enlisted 1 Jan 1776 in Norris' Co., Col. Poor's Reg't; listed as deserter on 28 Mar '76
- Stephen of Epping, private, Capt. Wiggin's Company, Col. Pierce Long's (1st NH) Regiment, served at Portsmouth, NH from 30 Sept to 7 Dec 1776, 2 months, 7 days in service. Mustered in again on 7 Jan 1777, being part of the company fit for marching to Ticonderoga (receiving advance pay), was at the fort on 27 Feb when muster roll called. Another card in his file lists 7 Aug 1776 to 11 Jun 1777 as his service time.
Strafford County Probate
Stephen died intestate, having left no will. Administration was granted to son Jacob on 20 Apr 1813 [Vol. 20, pg 184], with son Benjamin and Miles Leavitt Thurston as bondsmen. He would have just turned 21 years of age, and it is interesting that his two elder brothers hadn't been chosen for the task of caring for the estate.
It would be another year before guardianship of the youngest children of Stephen was granted. Vol. 19, pgs 197-199 lists the five appointments, which took place 15-18 April 1814: Samuel Leavitt of Gilford, husb., guardian of Stephen, "a minor above the age of 14 years" (so born ca 1793-1800); John Smith of Gilford, guardian of Samuel, minor above 14 years; Miles L. Thurston, grdn of Sally Leavitt, minor above 14 yrs; Ebenezer Smith of Gilford, Esq., grdn of Jonathan, minor under 14 years of age; and the widow Mehitable, granted guardianship over dau. Mehitable, minor under 14 years.
The inventory of the estate of Stephen Leavitt was taken on 28 Apr 1813 [Vol. 16, pg 340-344], which included part of Lot 5, 5th Range, in Gilford (32 acres on west side of road), value $160, and his homestead farm (about 100 acres) in Gilford, valued at $1650. A portion of his land needed to be sold to pay off the debts and, when his widow Mehitable had her dower set off on 19 June 1813 (approved 13 July), she received 12 plus acres of homestead farm, with rooms in the mansion house and part of barn, 108 square rods of orchard, and 1/3 of 70 acres in Lot 3, 14th Range, in Gilford [Vol. 15, pg 325].
The children of Stephen and Mehitable (Eaton) Leavitt:
As listed in the Descendants of Samuel Leavitt, on pages 98-99, they were probably all born in the part of Gilmanton, NH which would become Gilford in 1812. Errors have been marked, and their proper order of births numbered, with family record following. There were ten in number, as written by Daniel T. Leavitt, in letter to JPL.
i. LYDIA LEAVITT, b. 23 Dec 1781, d. 26 Mar 1855; married ca 1806, DANIEL MOULTON THURSTON of Gilford, b. 27 Apr 1784, d. 26 Feb 1842, Adrian, MI. Moved to Michigan in 1829; had three children, b. 1807-09 [Thurston Genealogies, pg 347]. Their dau, Mrs. Eliza Gouldsborough of Grand Rapids, MI, wrote to JPL in 1878, providing mother's birth date.
ii. BENJAMIN LEAVITT, b. 8 Nov 1783 [grave], d. 7 Oct 1873 [grave]; marr. JEMIMA AMES, d. 28 Nov 1856, AE 71 yrs. Six children listed in Desc. of Samuel Leavitt, pg 104
iii. MILES LEAVITT, b. 8 Feb 1788, d. 27 Jan 1870; Marr. 3 Sep 1815, SARAH BROWN, b. 19 Jun 1797, d. 7 Sep 1871 [Gilford Town Rec]. They had twelve children [Desc. of Samuel Leavitt, pg 122]. JPL corresponded with son Edward S. Leavitt, as well as Ida and John Hatch, ch of dau Eleanor (Leavitt) Hatch. He also wrote to son John P.
iv. ESTHER LEAVITT, b. 15 Feb 1790 [Ida Hatch letter, 2/9/1879], d. 1 Mar 1886, Gilford, aged 96 yrs, 10 das [NH VR]; married 26 Oct 1815, DANIEL FROHOCK, b. ca 1797, d. 25 Oct 1873. She was erroneously listed as having died young, and listed as a child of Stephen's brother Jonathan [Desc of Samuel, pg 90]. Both buried in Lamphrey Cem, Gilford, listed on monument with several of their children [Find a Grave]. In 1878, she was living with son Richard Frohock, Esq., in Gilford Village (JPL wrote to him in 1878).
v. JACOB E. LEAVITT, b. 1792, d. 10 Jan 1862 in Moultonborough, aged 70 [NH VR; grave, McCoy Cem]; marr. SALLY FLANDERS, b. , d. Campton, NH, 25 Jun 1881, AE 84 [grave, McCoy Cem]. Numbers listed for Jacob's household in the 1820-40 Gilford, NH censuses would suggest only three children. Moved to Moultonborough, NH prior to 1850 census.
1. Hannah D. Leavitt, b. ca 1816, d. Campton, NH, 29 Jul 1891, aged 74 yrs, 7 mos; marr Benjamin Adams. Several ch, listed on Find a Grave (Blair Cem, Campton).
2. Jacob E. Leavitt, b. 25 Sep 1820, d. 15 Jan 1863; marr. 1 Jan 1846, Sarah A. Conner, b. 14 Aug 1824, d. 20 Apr 1898. Five children (and wife) were listed under his father in Desc of Samuel, pg 98 (Caroline B is error; only four ch in probate - a 5th, Ai Hanson Leavitt, d. young).
3. Elizabeth F. Leavitt, b. ca 1824, d. 3 Sep 1864, AE 40. Marr. Enoch Flanders Jr, 5 Jan 1848.
vi. SAMUEL T. LEAVITT, (Samuel Jr until 1817) b. ca 1793-4 (age 56 in Aug. 1850 census), d. 5 Nov 1852, aged 60 [NH VR]; marr 1st, 17 Nov 1814, to HANNAH SANBORN; 2ndly marr, 24 Dec 1817, DOROTHY J. STEVENS, b. ca 1797, d. 1875 [grave]. Buried in Laconia's Union Cemetery. Attempts were made by JPL, in 1878, to make contact with his son Alvah E. Leavitt in Detroit, MI for family history. He was erroneously placed in the Desc. of Nehemiah book, pg 27/44.
vii. STEPHEN LEAVITT, b. 10 Mar 1796 [per Dan'l T letter, 12/17/77], d. 24 Feb 1870; Marr. 20 Nov 1822, CHARLOTTE SARGENT, b. 4 Dec 1799, d. 7 Jun 1857. They had three children [Desc. of Samuel, pg 129], including Daniel T. Leavitt, who corresponded with JPL.
viii. SALLY/SARAH LEAVITT, b. 1798, d. aft 1870 census; marr. (as his 2nd wife), HENRY MALLARD, b. 1787, d. 16 Jun 1844, AE 56 yrs.
1. Clarissa "Clara" A. Mallard, b. 3 Aug 1838, Gilford; marr John A. Davis. Her name given to JPL by Daniel T. Leavitt in 1878, as contact for further info from this family.
2. William H. Mallard, b. ca 1842, Gilford, NH
ix. JONATHAN LEAVITT, b. 1800, d. 18 Sep 1883, Laconia, NH, aged 83; Marr. 6 May 1822 [New Hampton, NH VR, v.1 pg338] SUSANNA SLEEPER, b. 1795-97. Lived in Alton, NH, 1840-50 censuses; Gilmanton, NH, 1860; Pittsfield, 1870. Two known ch, listed on pg 99 of Samuel gen.
1. Susan T. Leavitt, b. ca 1821-25 (aged 15-19 in 1840)
2. Joseph A. Leavitt, b. ca 1833-4, d. 1 Aug 1885
x. MEHITABLE LEAVITT, b. 23 Sep 1804, d. 31 Aug 1851, Gilford; Marr. 15 Feb 1827 [NH VR - rep from Gilford], JOHN F. COLEMAN, b. 1 Aug 1805, Dover, NH; d. 23 Nov 1864. Information on family came from dau Laura in 1878 (JPL).
1. Laura Ann Coleman, b. 5 Aug 1831, d. ; marr. David H. Rice, 9 Apr 1851, Lowell, MA. Living in Bristol, NH in 1878 when she replied to JPL's letter for family info.
2. Henrietta Addams(sic?) Coleman, b. 31 Oct 1837, d. 15 Feb 1848
3. John Woodman Coleman, b. 30 Dec 1833, d. 7 Dec 1854
1. William S. Leavitt - no descendants of Stephen Leavitt made any mention of there being a son with this name, nor has he been found in any records to support his placement here. Also, the marriage to Anna Leavitt in 1806 belongs to a Tuftonboro and Moultonborough NH line. Based on his placement in the above list of children, directly below Samuel's name, I believe one of the letters to JPL (this one not yet found) made mention of Samuel T.'s son William S. Leavitt as a contact, which was misinterpreted as a son of Stephen. This William S. Leavitt (1820-1903) lived in East Milton, MASS in 1878.
2. Eliza b. 1809 - she was not a child of Stephen Leavitt, but a daughter of Lydia (Leavitt) Thurston. In the 8 Jan 1878 Daniel T. Leavitt letter to JPL, he listed all of Stephen's offspring, and the contact info for each of them. It looks like Emily may have misread this letter, and thought Eliza was listed as one of the children.
While John Leavitt was the first of that surname to own land in Meredith [see: The Proprietors of Meredith], it wasn't until much later when a Leavitt family actually moved into town to settle.
No Leavitt was found as a Revolutionary War soldier serving from Meredith. Prior to this, a check of the 1776 Association Test for Meredith lists the names of 48 men [NHSP, Vol. 30, pg 93], though none had the Leavitt surname. Joseph "Roberds" (Roberts) was on this list, having moved there with his wife Eunice (Leavitt) [Desc. of Nehemiah v.6, pg 15/21] some time after 1771 [Joseph purchased, from his widowed mother Abigail Roberts, the original rights in Meredith of Oliver Smith on 18 Mar 1766. He was still in Brentwood at this time - Strafford County Deeds, Bk. 2, pg 415].
By the time of the 1790 census for "Merideth", (then in) Strafford County, the following six Leavitt names are now found in town: Amos , Levi , Nehemiah, Samuel, Stephen, and Weare Leavitt. This blog entry will focus on these early settlers.
AMOS LEAVITT (1759 - 1843)
On 18 April 1787, Amos Leavitt "late of Raymond but now of Meredith" purchased 50 acres from east end of lot #47 in the 2nd Division, from Jonathan Dow [Strafford County Deeds, Bk. 20, pg. 25]. He purchased another 20 acres that bordered him, in 1793, and a 15 acre piece out of Lot 48, 2nd Div., from Stephen Leavitt [Strafford Deeds, Bk. 20, pg. 26 and Bk. 50, pg. 128]. He sold all of this to James Glines in August 1805, himself buying the said Glines property in New Hampton [Bk. 50, pg. 129]. Amos would later return to Meredith, where he died in 1843. He was a Revolutionary War veteran. - Descendants of Nehemiah Leavitt, v.6, pg 18/19
LEVI LEAVITT (1761 - 1840)
A 1797 delinquent tax list for Meredith shows a Levi Leavitt living on the "S. Lane" farm, which was located in the 2nd Division, Lot 8 (115 acres). He and wife Sarah (Pearson) of Meredith, sold property (in her right) of Joseph Parsons (or Pearson) of Meredith in 1799 [Strafford Cty Deed, Bk. 30, pg. 283]. The census numbers (2 males under 16, 1 male 16+, and 2 females) match that of the Levi found in the Desc. of Samuel Leavitt, pg 94-95. He later moved to Vermont.
NEHEMIAH LEAVITT (ca 1752 - 1829)
With 3 males under 16 yrs of age in the 1790 census, this would likely be the Nehemiah from the Desc. of Nehemiah Leavitt book, pg 25-27. He married Sarah Philbrick in Chichester, NH, 1777, and moved then to Gilmanton, serving several times during the Rev. War. A 1781 deed [Straff. Cty, Bk. 4, pg 29] shows him selling property in Gilmanton, so perhaps moved to Meredith following this. No deed found with him purchasing land in Meredith prior to this census.
SAMUEL LEAVITT (1770 - 1852)
Descendants of Nehemiah Leavitt, v.6, pg 27/43. In Meredith by 1789, when he married Mary Smith, and purchased land on 24 Sept 1790 [Strafford Cty Deed, Bk. 19, pg. 282]. The 20-acre tract was part of Lot #47 in 2nd Division, and bordered that of Amos Leavitt (see above), his uncle. He sold part of his homestead farm in 1793, the bounds mentioned being on "southwest side of highway from Amos Leavitt's home to Sanbornton line".
STEPHEN LEAVITT (abt 1745 - after 1800)
"Moved from Poplin (Fremont) to Meredith when son Samuel [see above] was a boy" - written in a letter from W. B. Leavitt to JPL , 28 Dec 1877 [quoted in Desc. of Nehemiah Leavitt book, pg. 27/45-46]. Land deeds prior to 1800 not seen. Relatives say he went to the British Dominion, or went east, while family remained in Meredith. Wife Mary (Roberts) lived to age 102.
WEARE LEAVITT (1742 - 1829)
Descendants of Moses Leavitt, pg 63. Living at Meredith Neck by June 1788, when he signed a petition to incorporate a new town from the eastern portion of Meredith, and north through New Hampton (to be called Watertown) - it was rejected [NH State Papers, Vol. XI, pg. 277]. No deed was found (so either a town grant or through a relative's probate), but he had at least 50 acres in Lot #42, in 3rd Division on the Neck, as he sold off tracts from it in 1805-06.
Below is a part of the 1770 map of Meredith, New Hampshire, with the lots in the Second Division marked out with the Leavitt owners. They didn't own the complete 120-acre lots, and the land deed descriptions are vague at times, making it difficult to properly determine their exact bounds. Note: some of these deeds took place after the 1790 census, so are not mentioned above. Randlett Pond (GPS: 43.579067, -71.568975) can be seen drawn on the border between Lots 41 and 42.
In the Descendants of Samuel Leavitt, pg 80, there are two children of Andrew and Sarah (Hastings) Leavitt listed as being "born before 1774", William and Nathaniel Leavitt. The History of Amherst, pg 669, places them further down the order of children's births, though that book did not give them any dates. William's was an easy one to solve, as he is seen in the censuses of 1850-1870 with an age coinciding with a 1795 birth year. He was also seen first in the Amherst tax lists in 1817 with a poll tax, showing he turned 21. Nathaniel, however, was not seen on any of the tax lists for that town (the online film on FamilySearch ends in 1819), and so more research was needed.
The following timeline is all of the data I have gathered on this Nathaniel (aka Nathaniel Kimball) Leavitt to determine a year of birth, and to find more about the "d. in Calif." statement given him in the Leavitt genealogy.
Nathaniel Leavitt is born, probably in Amherst, New Hampshire (father Andrew there in 1800 census); San Francisco Funeral Home Records listed age at death as 56 yrs, as did several local newspapers reporting his death in 1855.
27 Feb 1821
Marriage intents [Boston Marr Int, 1817-1823: Vol 9, pg 261]
1 May 1821
In Boston, Mr Nathaniel Kimball Leavitt (of Amherst, NH) married to Hannah Sewards (of Portsmouth, NH) [Boston Marr, 1800-1849; V.2 pg 36; Farmer's Cabinet (Amherst, NH), 5/19/1821]
1821: Boston Tax List
Lived on Green Street, Ward 6 (house of Jonathan Simonds)
12 Apr 1822
Born in Boston, Andrew Kimball Leavitt, son of Nath'l and Hannah [note: Andrew would change his middle name to Jackson at a later date]
Abt September 1825
Daughter Sarah E. Leavitt born (calculated from age at death) in MA [1860 San Fran census; funeral record] or NY [1850 census]. One paper [Daily Alta, 5/11/66], said she was a "native of Lowell, MA".
Nathaniel K. an "insolvent debtor", per court of common pleas in Albany [notice in Albany Argus, 4/10/1827]
Daughter Hannah Ann Leavitt born, probably in Albany [Excelsior, pg 56]; the four children of Nathaniel are mentioned in the journals of the Hutchinson Singers, their 1st cousins, when they were touring in the Albany, NY area in 1842
Daughter Anna Leavitt born, likely in Albany [Excelsior, pg 56-57]
1830 US Census, Albany Ward-3 (pg 285)
Nathaniel K. "Laivit" (Laint/Saint on indexes)
1 male, 5-10; 1 m, 30-40; 3 females, under 5; 1 f, 30-40
24 August 1835
Captain Nathaniel K. Leavitt elected Lieut Col. of the 246th Regiment [Albany Argus, 8/28/1835]
1840 US Census forAlbany, Ward-3
1 male, 15-19; 1 m, 40-49; 3 females, 10-14; 1 f, 40-49
25 July 1844
Mr Heman (or Herman) H. Squires married to Miss Sarah E., dau of Col N.K. Leavitt, all of this city [Albany (NY) Argus paper, 8/2/1844, pg 3]
1844, 1845 Albany, NY Street Directories
N.K., constable, h. 124 Broadway [son Andrew, barber, at 126 Broadway]; Nath'l not listed in following years, only Andrew
7 Apr 1847
The Albany Evening Journal, on this date, prints death notice and obituary for Andrew Leavitt of Amherst, NH, "the father of Nathaniel K Leavitt of this city". He had died back on 29 Aug 1846, w/ an obit printed in the 9/3 issue of the Farmers Cabinet and copied in this paper 7 months later.
13 Nov 1847
"N.K." listed as a member of grand jury in Albany [Albany Evening Jrnl, 11/15]
6 Feb 1849 issue of New York Herald (pg 1)
sailed Saturday in ship Panama for San Francisco, "N.R.(sic) Leavitt"
"Officers Mullen and Leavitt" mentioned in Daily Alta article, 2/7/50; Col. N K Leven(sic) was again appointed policeman in Nov 1852 [Daily Alta, 11/16/52]
Wife Mary joins Nath'l in San Francisco. "his second wife came to this state about three years ago" [Daily Alta, 11/21/1855]
1852, month not known [California State Census, pg 443]
N.K. Leavitt, 54, agent, b. New Hampshire; last res: New York
Mary C, 26, b. New York; last res: NY
26 Sept 1852
son Isaac M born (based on age at death, see 1/10/54)
20 Sept 1853
Sailed from New York for San Juan, in steamship "Star of the West": N.K. Leavitt, lady, infant and son [NY Daily Times, 9/21/53]; The New York Morning Courier (exact date not known) gives the listing as "N.K. Leavitt, wife, infant and boy, Miss E. Leavitt".
15 Oct 1853
"N.K. Leavitt and family" arrived on steamer Cortes at San Francisco on Saturday afternoon [17 Oct '53 Sacramento Daily Union paper, pg 2]
10 Jan 1854
Isaac M Leavitt, son of Col. N.K. and Mary C, died of whooping cough in San Francisco, aged 15 mos, 15 das. [Sacramento Daily Union,1/15/1854]
Circa Feb 1855
Nathaniel and Mary are divorced [Sacramento Daily Union, 11/23/55, pg 2]
18 March 1855
Col. N.K. Leavitt, of this city, and Miss Ann Paddock, of New York City, married "in this city" [California Farmer (San Francisco, CA) newspaper, 3/29/1855]
1 Nov 1855
Ann Leavitt separates from her husband
Tues, 20 Nov 1855
Nathaniel hangs himself in his stable, at his coal and wood yard on the corner of Pacific and Powell Streets. [Marysville Daily Herald, 11/23/1855; Sacramento Daily Union, 11/23/55; Daily Alta,11/21/1855, 11/22/55]
21 Nov 1855
Col N K Leavitt is buried in Lone Mountain Cemetery (Lot 23, Tier 7, Chain(?) Plot 1) [San Francisco Funeral Home Records: N. Gray & Co, Vol 1854-1861, pg 75]
Nathaniel's second wife, Mary C, married J. A. Moody, and had a son, Louis [1860 San Fran census, pg 148]. She died in San Francisco on 13 Apr 1864, aged 38 yrs, 6 mos [Daily Alta, 4/14/1864]. His third wife, Ann (Paddock), died in the city abt 30 May 1860, aged 65 [CA Cem Records], and was buried in Lone Mountain Cem.
Lone Mountain Cemetery was later renamed Laurel Hill Cemetery and, in the 1930's, was one of many burial places located within city limits that were closed down and entirely removed. Any bodies not claimed by family were buried in a mass grave in Cypress Lawn Cemetery in Colma, CA, while their former grave stones were used around the city by the Dep't of Public Works for construction projects (see article: here). Nathaniel is probably the "Col R. R." Leavitt listed on the cemetery website. "A. P. Leavitt" (Anna) is also among those buried here.
Daughter Sarah E., the only (known) child of Nathaniel and Hannah to follow their father westward, died in San Francisco on 9 May 1866, aged 40 yrs, 8 mos [The Pacific, 5/17/66]. She was buried on the 11th in Lone Mountain Cem, and now lies in Cypress Lawn, where reinterred in a mass grave. With husband Heman/Herman Henry Squires, she had three children: Nathaniel Leavitt Squires, Edwin/Edward Squires and Margaret Squires. As if her father's suicide being printed in all the local papers wasn't bad enough, her marital problems and her attempt to divorce the neglecting husband also made the news [San Fran Bulletin, 3/8/1860, 3/9/60, 10/25/65], as did Herman's court cases.
With the addition of several children for Nathaniel and Hannah, much more research still needs to be done, to find out exactly what became of them. One genealogical "case" solved, several more now added!
Updates about our Leavitt genealogy research, our DNA projects, and other notes to keep our membership informed.