Saturday, February 9, 2013

Surname Saturday ~ Adsit of Lyme, Connecticut

Lyme, New London County,
Connecticut (courtesy Wikipedia)
My immigrant Adsit ancestor is John Adsit, who was born about 1652-1655, presumably in England. The name was recorded variously as Adset, Adsett or Adsit. These versions of the surname have been found at Petworth, Sussex County, England. According to George E. McCracken, writing in The American Genealogist, the name may have originally been Adshead. There are other branches, possibly related, where the spelling was Adget and Edgett.

John Adsit died January 16, 1734/35, in Lyme, Connecticut. (Source: Donald Lines Jacobus, "Lyme, Conn., Deaths 1731-1736: Records of the First Congregational Society of Lyme". The American Genealogist. Vol 24 (1948); online archives,, p. 63.) The will of John "Ageet" was written January 15, 1734/35 and was probated on January 28, 1734/35. In George E. McCracken's article, "A Hartford Miscellany: Howard, Stone, Adsit-Edgett," he analyzes the will and discusses the possibility that John Adsit had three wives. I am descended from his third wife, Mary.

Part of the will is transcribed below.

Page 1 of Descendants of John Adsit of Lyme, Connecticut, by Newman Ward Adsit

His "late wife, Mary" [last name unknown], was mother to son John, (youngest son) Stephen, and (other two sons) Samuel and Benjamin. He also had two daughters, Sarah and Mary. Assuming the death record for John Adsit refers to the same man as this will for John Ageet, Senr, as well as the birth records at Lyme, Connecticut, for five of the six children listed, he was over 60 years old when these six children were born. I am descended from his third son, Benjamin.

Generation 2: Benjamin Adsit (1728-1793) was born in Lyme, Connecticut. According to the section on the Adsit family in The Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York by Frank J. Doherty, Adsits were in Beekman from about 1753 to 1760. This source indicates that Benjamin Adsit was in Dutchess County, New York as early as 1768. He is listed in the 1790 US Federal Census at Washington, Dutchess County, New York. He married Rhoda Chadwick in about 1750 (probably in Connecticut) and they had eight children, many of whom predeceased their father, as they are not listed in his will.

Generation 3: Martin Adsit (1762-1844) lived in Dutchess County and Columbia County, New York. I find him in the US Federal Census in Hillsdale, Columbia County, New York in 1790, 1800 and 1810. Unfortunately there are so few details in the census in 1820, 1830, and 1840, that I cannot be sure which Martin Adsit is mine. He married Rhoda Haight, whose mother was Dutch and gives me one line that goes back to the Netherlands. I believe they had eleven children.

Generation 4: Leonard Adsit (1783-1816) was born in Columbia County, New York, and spent much of his life in Chenango County, New York, where he is buried. He married Frances (Fanny) Davenport in 1804. They had six children before he died and she remarried Orlando Davis. I have previously written about Fanny and Orlando Davis.

Generation 5: James Monroe Adsit (1809-1894) migrated to Chicago, Illinois, and became a banker.
Generation 6: Charles Chapin Adsit (1853-1931)
Generation 7: Elizabeth Adsit (1897-1983)
Generation 8: Charles McAlpin Pyle, Jr. (1924-1993)
Generation 9: Me

Adsit, Newman Ward. Descendants of John Adsit of Lyme, Connecticut. Privately published circa 1959. I had found the genealogy at the NEHGS library years ago, and I just found that it is available at

McCracken, George E. "A Hartford Miscellany: Howard, Stone, Adsit-Edgett." The American Genealogist Vol. 36 (1960), pages 29-38. This article expands on some items in the above genealogy by Newman Ward Adsit.

The Settlers of the Beekman Patent, V.1-7 (Online database:, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2010), (Orig. Pub. by Frank J. Doherty, Pleasant Valley, NY. Frank J. Doherty, The Settlers of the Beekman Patent, Dutchess County, New York: An Historical and Genealogical Study of All the 18th Century Settlers in the Patent, ten volumes. 1990–2003).

A description of The Settlers of the Beekman Patent from the website of the New England Historic Genealogical Society:
The Settlers of the Beekman Patent series, by Frank J. Doherty, contains data on over thirteen hundred families who settled in the Beekman Patent, an original land grant given to Col. Henry Beekman in 1697 by the English Crown and the second largest patent in present-day Dutchess County, New York. Many emigrants from New England lived in and passed through the Beekman Patent on their way west. Others, such as the Palatines and Quakers (almost all from New England), were early settlers and remained for several generations or more. 
This has been a great source as I try to confirm the families that married into the Adsit family.


  1. I just came across this and thought I would comment--hopefully the passage of so many years will not matter. My name is John Adsit. I am descended from John Adsit of Lyme Connecticut. He named his first-born son John, and the tradition of naming the first born son John has continued to this day, with the only break being my grandfather, named Frederick. He never forgave his mother for not allowing him to be named John. My son and grandson are both named John.

    1. If I'm not mistaken, we are 7th cousins. Thanks for the comment!