Samuel Henshaw

 1. William Henshall  m Margerie Gyll 
 2.. Thomas Henshall (?-c1631) m - Kendrick 
 3... William Henshawe (c1608-1644) m Katherine Houghton (1615-1651)
 4.... Joshua Henshawe (1643-1717) m Elizabeth Sumner (?-1728)
 5..... Samuel Henshaw (1682-1761) m Waitstill Topliff (1684-1737)
 6...... Samuel Henshaw (1723-1778) m Submit Woodward (c1726-1788)
 7....... Samuel Henshaw (1744-1809)
          +Sarah Swift 
          +Martha Hunt (1755-1842)
 8........  Martha Henshaw (1783-1874) 1,2,3,4
 8........  John Hunt Henshaw (1785-1829) 1,2,4
 8........  Samuel Henshaw (1789-1863) 1,2,3,4
 8........  Sarah Swift Henshaw (1790-1869) 1,2,3,4
 8........  Theresa Henshaw (1791-1863) 1,2,3
 8........  Elizabeth Henshaw (1793-1823) 1,2,5
 8........  Frances Aurelia Henshaw (1796-1821) 1,2,6,7
 8........  Louisa Augusta Henshaw (1797-1830) 1,2,8
Samuel Henshaw     [ID 04543] Click here to switch to Ancestror Tree view: Tree View

Born Feb 3 1744, Milton, Norfolk County, Massachusetts.1,2,4,9  

He married Sarah Swift, May 31 1763, Ofmilton, Norfolk County, Massachusetts.1,4,10  

Samuel studied theology and graduated from Harvard in 1773.  But because of voice problems, he gave up preaching and went into law.11  

He then married Martha Hunt1,2,3,4,11,12,13,14,15 [Patty Hunt13,14,15,16, Polly Hunt17], Aug 8 17821,2,3,4,11,12,13,14,15, at her father's home, Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts1,2,3,4,11,12,13,14,15.  Martha, daughter of John Hunt & Esther Wells, was born Jun 28 1755.2,3,5,11  

Martha brought considerable wealth to this marriage, including the inheritance of her father's estate and family mansion, built in 1751, which later became known as "Sessions House".11  

Samuel became judge of the Northampton Probate Court and a trustee of Williams College from 1802-1809.11  Both Samuel and Martha ("Madame Henshaw" as she was always called)11,18 were prominent and wealthy citizens of Northampton, Massachusetts.11  Martha was notable for her personal beauty and force of character.11  

About 1788 Samuel became a shareholder (one share) in the Ohio Company, to which was deeded large tracts of land in the Ohio River valley near the Muskingum River.  Samuel received several acres of land in Ohio for his shares (it is not known how he made use of this investment).19  

On Sep 12 1803, "The Ohio Gazette" (Marietta, Ohio) reported a petition of Samuel Henshaw, of Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, for land in Trumbull County, Ohio.20  

Samuel Henshaw died Mar 11 1809, Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts; buried in the Henshaw Tomb, Northampton, Massachusetts.3,4,5  Click here to see the tombstone inscription: Henshaw Tomb

In Samuel Henshaw's will, dated Jul 5 1809, he left to his eldest daughter, Martha Chapman Bates, Wright's new and completed Bible, and willed the rest of his children bibles of equal value.  He then stated:11

"As a Parent who acutely feels for the best happenings of his dear children, I do beseech them to search the Holy Scripture and to esteem the Glories before the blessed GOD as their supreme Treasure!".
He further willed:11
"I give and bequeath to my beloved wife, Martha her wearing apparel, gold watch, rings and personal ornaments of every kind - all my silver & household goods and furniture of every description - all my liquors and provisions of every kind - all my carriages both for farming and family life - all my horses with their various bridles, harnesses and saddles, and all my other livestock and valuable animals whatsoever - I also give to my said wife Onton's Exposition of the Old Testament and all the books of faith shall remain in my library that belonged to her father and her brother John Hunt - The above legacies and bequests are for her own use and disposal forever inherit of power.  And I hereby also give unto my said wife the occupation of all the real estate in Northampton for as long as she remains my widow and no longer".

Martha never remarried, and "she continued to occupy the old homestead estate, for thirty-three years thereafter, seeing her large family grow up to mature years, and after all had removed from her, for many years alone she kept up her establishment".  Her amount of land was large, totaling over $20,000 in assets and extending to the plains area, which is where the abandoned State Hospital is located.11  

Martha died May 26 184218,21 [May 27 18422,3,5], Northampton, Massachusetts18,21; age 87, buried in the Henshaw Tomb, Northampton, Massachusetts18,21.  Click here to see the tombstone inscription: Henshaw Tomb

The will of Samuel Henshaw "of Hampshire County, Massachusetts" was proved in Meigs County, Ohio in 1845,22 presumably settling Martha's portion of Samuel's original estate.  


  1. Contribution from Kristen Wagner-Henshaw.
  2. Wyman, T.B., "The Hunt Family". Garnier & Company, Charleston 1969.
  3. Contribution from Tom Henshaw.
  4. Henshaw genealogical chart, author unknown; Contributed by Donald Craig Henshaw.
  5. Henshaw Tomb gravestone inscriptions.
  6. "Dewey genealogy and family history". Compiled by Louis Marinus Dewey,
    Westfield, Massachusetts, 1898.
  7. "Life of George Dewey Family History", by Adelbert M. Dewey.
  8. American Antiquarian Society. "Index to Marriages in Massachusetts Centinel
    and Columbian Centinel, 1784-1840", Vol. 1 A-D. Boston: G.K. Hall, 1961.
  9. Contribution from Tom Henshaw citing:
    Vital records, Milton, Norfolk County, Massachusetts.
  10. The LDS IGI - Massachusetts.
  11. "The Hunt/Henshaw House: A Memorial to Colonial Life", by Megan Gardner, Smith College, 1997:
    Janice Moulton, Department of Philosophy, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts:
  12. Gary Parsons database:
  13. "Massachusetts Marriages to 1800", pg. 166 (
  14. "Early Massachusetts Marriages".
  15. "Northampton, MA Marriages from first record to 1840"; USGenWeb Archives:
  16. Boston, Massachusetts Marriages, 1700-1809;
  17. Boston, Massachusetts marriages; "Ray's Place" New England history:
  18. Contribution from Brian Tabor, Librarian, Forbes Library, Northampton, MA ().
  19. "First Ownership of Ohio Lands" by Albion Morris Dyer; Genealogical
    Publishing Company, 1969.
  20. "Pioneer Ohio Newspapers 1802-1818", by Karen Maher Green; The Frontier Press,
    Galveston, Texas, 1988; GS929.3771 G79 in the Santa Clara CA library.
    "The Ohio Gazette", Vol. II, No. 91, Monday, Sep 12 1803.
  21. Northampton, MA - Deaths in Vital Records to 1840; USGenWeb Archives.
  22. "Ohio Wills and Estates to 1850: An Index", by Carol Willsey Bell;
    Bell Books, Youngstown, Ohio; 1981. Will Book 2, page 35.

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