Joshua Sidney Henshaw

Joshua Sidney Henshaw
B: 1811 
D: 1859 
M: Jane Handy
   ├── Emily H. Henshaw (c1848-1848) 1
   ├── John Handy Henshaw (1850-1924) 2,3,4,5
   └── Abbigal Henshaw (1854-?) 3,6

Joshua Sidney Henshaw     [ID 05652] Click here to switch to Ahnentafel view: Ahnentafel View

Joshua Sidney Henshaw7 [Joshua Henshaw Belcher7].

Born Oct 16 18117,8 [about 18155, 18199], Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts7,8.  

He married Jane Handy, Mar 11 1846, Utica, Oneida County, New York.1  Marriage performed by Rev. George Leeds.1  Marriage reported on Mar 13 1846 in the "Utica Daily Gazette".1,4  Jane, daughter of John H. Handy1,3,5, was born about 18201,3,5 [about 18306], New York1,3,5.  

Joshua and family were shown in the 1850 census (Jul 29 1850), living in the household of Jane's (apparently widowed) mother in Utica, Oneida County, New York:5

Abigail Handy, age 64, born in Massachusetts; $36,000 real estate.
Joshua S. Henshaw, age 35, born in Massachusetts; lawyer.
Jane Henshaw, age 30, born in New York.
John H. Henshaw, age 6 months, born in New York.
Elizabeth Floyd, age 16, born in Ireland.
Bridget Floyd, age 20, born in Ireland.

Joshua Sidney Henshaw died Apr 29 1859, Utica, Oneida County, New York.7,8  

Widow Jane and family were shown in the 1860 census (Jul 9 1860), Utica, Oneida County, New York:3

Abigail Handy, age 73, born in New York; $25,000 real estate; $2,000 personal property.
Jane Henshaw, age 40, born in New York.
John Henshaw, age 10, born in New York; attended school.
Abby Henshaw, age 9, born in New York; attended school.
Margaret Lynch, age 20, born in Ireland; domestic.

Widow Jane and daughter Abbigal were shown in the 1880 census (Jun 8-9 1880), 234 Genessee Street, Utica, Oneida County, New York:6

Henshaw, Jane, age 50, born in New York; parents born in New York; widow; keeping house.
Henshaw, Abbigal, daughter, age 30, born in New York; parents born in New York; single.

Jane died 1896.9  

A biographical sketch of Joshua Sidney Henshaw was published in "The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans", Volume V, page 217:7

HENSHAW, Joshua Sidney, author, was born in Boston, Mass., Oct. 16, 1811; a descendant of Jonathan Belcher, colonial governor of Massachusetts.  His name, originally Joshua Henshaw Belcher, was changed by an act of the Pennsylvania legisltare in 1845.  He was educated in the Boston schools, was a teacher in the Chauncy Hall school, Boston, 1833-37, and instructor in mathematics in the U.S. navy, 1837-41, and 1843-48.  In 1838-40 he made a voyage around the world on the frigate Columbia.  He was admitted to the bar in 1842 and practised in Utica, 1848-59.  He published: Philosophy of Human [p.217] Progress (1835); Incitemeut to Moral and Intellectual Well-Doing (1836); Around the World, by an Officer of the U.S. Navy (2 vols., 1840); Life of Father Mathew (1849); and United States Manual for Consuls (1849).  He died in Utica, N.Y., April 29, 1859.

Another biographical sketch was published in Thomas William Herringshaw's "Encyclopedia of American Biography of the Nineteenth Century", page 474:10

HENSHAW, JOSHUA SIDNEY, lawyer, author, was born Oct. 16, 1811, in Boston, Mass.  He was a lawyer in Utica from 1848, but previously an instructor in the United States navy.  He was the author of Incitements to Well Doing; Life of Father Mathew; United States Manual for Consuls; Around the World; and Philosophy of Human Progress.  He died April 29, 1859, in Utica, N.Y.

Another biographical sketch was published in "Belcher-Henshaw and Other Ancestry of Richard Townsend Henshaw 1882-1938 of Rye, New York, with a Record of His Descendents", a book compiled from the genealogical research of grandson Richard Townsend Henshaw:8

The original name of the Henshaws was Belcher, descended from Gregory Belcher, who came to New England in 1637 and settled in Braintree.  He is tentatively identified with the Gregory Belcher, baptized 30 March 1606, son of Gregory Belcher, yeoman, of Berkeswell, Co. Warwick.  In a 1665 deposition the immigrant said he was about 60 years old, which would place his birth in or about 1605, close to the baptismal date.  His fourth great-grandson, Joshua Henshaw Belcher (1811-59), when a professor of mathematics at the Naval School in Philadelphia in 1846, petitioned the General Assembly of Pennsylvania to change his name to Joshua Sidney Henshaw.  As the original petition was lost in the 1897 fire which destroyed the State Capitol at Harrisburg, the reason for the change remains unknown.  It was probably to perpetuate the name of his childless great-uncle by marriage, Joshua Henshaw (1746-1823).

This person's ancestry is unknown!
If you know who the parents were, please


  1. 10,000 Vital Records of Central New York, 1813-1850;
  2. Contribution from Nancy Jacobsen () citing:
    parish register of Grace Church, Utica, New York; 1:15 (affidavit signed 30 apr 1921 by Rev. Octavius Applgate, Rector of Grace Church).
  3. 1860 census, 3rd Ward, Utica, Oneida County, New York; roll M653-827, page 258, line #20, dwelling #485, family #545.
  4. Contribution from Nancy Jacobsen ().
  5. 1850 census, 3rd Ward, Utica, Oneida County, New York; roll M432-563, page 317B, line #26, dwelling #92, family #110.
  6. 1880 census, Utica, Oneida County, New York; roll T9-0904, page 79B, line #45, dwelling #228, family #281.
  7. "Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans",
    Johnson, Rossiter, ed.; The Biographical Society, 1904;
  8. The National Genealogical Society Quarterly, Vol. 73, book reviews, pg 2:
  9. The Church Of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints (LDS) computerized Ancestral File.
  10. "Encyclopedia of American Biography";

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