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Susannah (--?--)

Spouse: Thomas McKnight

  1. James McKnight, born 15 Nov 1732, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  2. Elizabeth McKnight, born 10 Mar 1734, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  3. Susannah McKnight, born 10 May 1736, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  4. Thomas McKnight, born 24 May 1738, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

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Charles Banker

Birth: 16 Jun 1847, NY

Father: Jeremiah Banker
Mother: Sarah Wheelock

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Abigail Gould

Birth: 9 Aug 1748, Sutton, Worcester Co, MA

Death: 13 May 1802, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

Spouse: Thomas McKnight
Marriage: 1 Mar 1764, Sutton, Worcester Co, MA

  1. Sarah McKnight, born 22 May 1764, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  2. James McKnight, born 11 Mar 1766, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  3. John McKnight, born 13 Mar 1768, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  4. Lemuel McKnight, born calculated 1 Sep 1774, MA
  5. Thomas McKnight, born about 1777
  6. Abigail McKnight, born about 1778, probably Douglas, Worcester Co, MA
  7. Susannah McKnight, born about 1780, MA
  8. Elijah McKnight, born about 1781, MA
  9. Reuben McKnight, born calculated 25 Mar 1785, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA
  10. Lucy McKnight, born calculated 13 May 1791, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA
  11. Alvin McKnight, born 6 Apr 1796, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

Notes:

She was the daughter of Ebenezer Gould and Abigail Carril?. Abigail (Carril) Gould must have died before Ebenezer married Hannah Jenison on 12 Aug 1760, recorded in both Sutton and Oxford. (Src: Sutton and Oxford VRs to 1850.)

Ebenezer died in Sutton before 12 Mar 1765, when Hannah (his widow) was issued letters of administration. Abigail McKnight was listed amongst the heirs, and Thomas McKnight signed the division of estate. (Src: Worcester County probate case 24950.)

This is probably the "Wid. Abigail McKnight" that died in Douglas, 13 May 1802.

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Elizabeth McKnight

Birth: 10 Mar 1734, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Susannah (--?--)

Notes:

The is probably the Elizabeth McKnight that married Jonathan King, Jr. in Sutton, 10 Apr 1755. (Src: Sutton VRs to 1850.)

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James McKnight

Birth: 15 Nov 1732, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Susannah (--?--)

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James McKnight

Birth: 11 Mar 1766, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Abigail Gould

Spouse: Sarah Farnum
Marriage: 12 Jun 1788, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

Notes:

He was a resident of Douglas on 12 June 1788 when he married Sarah Farnum.

James moved to Whitingham, Windham Co, VT, circa 1803, per following deeds. On 6 Sep 1794 James McKnight "of Douglas" bought property in Whitingham from David Eames (Whitingham, VT, deeds 3:735). On 9 Nov 1801 James and Sarah McKnight "of Douglas" sold property in Douglas to John Farnum (Worc deed 146:644). On 3 Mar 1803 James McKnight "of Whitingham" sold another parcel in Douglas to John Farnum (Worc deeds 157:1).

James doesn't appear in further land records in Whitingham or Worcester County, but his son, Parley McKnight engaged in multiple land transactions in Whitingham in the 1820s and 30s. Multiple children of Parley and his wife are recorded in Whitingham. Parley died 1871 in Buckland, MA. His death record says he was born in Douglas circa 1801, son of James McKnight (MA 238:274).

A James McKnight, aged 60 to 69, was a resident of Whitingham in 1830, probably the same James.

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John McKnight

Birth: 13 Mar 1768, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Death: 28 Feb 1840, Whitingham, Windham Co, VT

Burial: Sadawga Cemetery, Whitingham, WIndham Co, VT

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Abigail Gould

Spouse: Lucy Stockwell
Marriage: 14 Aug 1791, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

  1. Polly McKnight, born 17 Jan 1792, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

Notes:

Like his brother James, John McKnight also went to Whitingham, Windham Co, VT.

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Sarah McKnight

Birth: 22 May 1764, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Death: 24 Aug 1845, Calais, Washington Co, VT

Burial: Robinson Cemetery, Calais, Washington Co, VT

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Abigail Gould

Spouse: Jonathan Pray
Marriage: 29 May 1792, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

  1. Ephraim Pray, born 26 Jan 1793, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  2. Sibbel Pray, born 27 Jun 1797, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  3. Thomas Pray, born 23 Jan 1800, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  4. Charlotte Pray, born 26 Jul 1802, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  5. Reuben Pray, born 1 Feb 1805, Calais, Washington Co, VT

Notes:

The family was living in Oxford in 1800, with two young males, two young females, and an older woman, possibly Sarah's mother.

Sarah and Jonathan moved from Oxford to Calais, Caladonia Co [now Washington Co], before 1 Feb 1805, when their son Reuben was born there. The births of their first three children are recorded in both Oxford and Calais, with dates that sometimes disagree.

The family is enumerated in the 1810 and 1830 census living in Calais. They were not found there in 1820, 1840, or 1850. They may be living in the household of their son, Ephraim, in Calais in 1840, as there is an older man and woman living in the household.

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Susannah McKnight

Birth: 10 May 1736, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Susannah (--?--)

Spouse: William Simpson
Marriage: 3 Oct 1759, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

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Thomas McKnight

Spouse: Susannah (--?--)

  1. James McKnight, born 15 Nov 1732, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  2. Elizabeth McKnight, born 10 Mar 1734, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  3. Susannah McKnight, born 10 May 1736, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  4. Thomas McKnight, born 24 May 1738, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

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Thomas McKnight

Birth: 24 May 1738, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA

Death: between 24 Mar 1797 and 24 Mar 1802, probably Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

Father: Thomas McKnight
Mother: Susannah (--?--)

Spouse: Abigail Gould
Marriage: 1 Mar 1764, Sutton, Worcester Co, MA

  1. Sarah McKnight, born 22 May 1764, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  2. James McKnight, born 11 Mar 1766, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  3. John McKnight, born 13 Mar 1768, Oxford, Worcester Co, MA
  4. Lemuel McKnight, born calculated 1 Sep 1774, MA
  5. Thomas McKnight, born about 1777
  6. Abigail McKnight, born about 1778, probably Douglas, Worcester Co, MA
  7. Susannah McKnight, born about 1780, MA
  8. Elijah McKnight, born about 1781, MA
  9. Reuben McKnight, born calculated 25 Mar 1785, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA
  10. Lucy McKnight, born calculated 13 May 1791, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA
  11. Alvin McKnight, born 6 Apr 1796, Douglas, Worcester Co, MA

Notes:

Thomas McKnight was a resident of Oxford on 29 Nov 1757 when he bought land near Manchaug Pond in Douglas from Ezra Whitney. (Src: Worc deeds, 45:420.)

He was still living in Oxford when he married Abigail Gould in Sutton on 1 Mar 1764.

Thomas McKnight, Oxford, served in the Revolutionary war as a Private in Capt. William Campbell's company, Col. Ebenezer Learned's regiment, enlisted 4 May 1775, service 3 months 4 days; reported discharged 5 Oct 1775; order for bounty coat or its equivalent in money dated Roxbury, 26 Oct. 1775. [Src: Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors, Vol 10, p. 532; FHL microfilm 101711087.]

Thomas McKnight is listed in the 1790 census residing in Douglas, Worcester County, MA, with two males 16 or over, two males under 16, two males 16 or older, and four females.

He was again in Douglas when he sold land there to James McKnight, probably his son, on 24 Mar 1797. (Src: Worc deeds, 147:13.)

He does not appear in the 1798 direct tax list for Massachusetts and Maine. However, James McKnight appears on the list residing in Douglas. (Src: "Massachusetts and Maine: Direct Tax, 1798," online database at AmericanAncestors.org, accessed 8 Apr 2022.)

He was deceased by 24 Mar 1802, when he is listed as such on a deed. (Src: Worc deeds, 147:13.)

About the Children of Thomas and Abigail:

Only three children of Thomas McKnight and Abigail Gould have birth records, all in Oxford, Worcester County, Massachusetts. The others shown here are inferred indirectly from other records. Vital and land records show evidence of only one family with surame McKnight living in Oxford and Douglas in the 1760 to 1800 time frame, namely that of Thomas and Abigail (Gould) McKnight. Some of the children shown here are assumed to be the children of Thomas and Abigail because (1) they were known to have been born in Douglas during the childbearing years of Abigail, and (2) their birth date does not conflict with the birth of other children of Abigail. (3) In addition, the father of several of the children shown here is identified as Thomas in death records or local history books. (4) For one of the children (Abigail), a genealogy of the Wheelock family in Calais names both Abigail and Thomas as parents.

Many of the children of Thomas and Abigail went to Montpelier and Calais in the 1790s or early 1800s (Sarah, Lemuel, Thomas, Abigail, Elijah, Susan, and Alvin). John Gould, brother of Abigail (Gould) McKnight also settled in Montpelier, and is buried there.[1] Land records show that the McKnights of Oxford and later Douglas were associates of the family of Jacob Davis,[2] who was the principle catalyst for the settlement of Montpelier and Calais. They were likely drawn into the opportunities in Montpelier and Calais presented by Jacob, as were many other residents of Oxford and Charlton.

Some of the children of Thomas and Abigail were connected in ways other than living in the same town. For example, some are found living in the same household in various census records.[3] Two are identified as siblings in a newspaper article.[4]

There is, however, still some room for doubt. Thomas' parents, Thomas Sr. and Susannah McKnight, had a child named James, for whom no further record has been found. James would have been a sibling of Thomas, and, if he remained in Douglas, might have fathered some of the children shown here, particularly those whose father has not been identified as Thomas (Thomas, Susannah). Another possible sticking point is the advanced age of Abigail (Gould) McKnight when she gave birth to her son Alvin. She would have been 47 years old at the time, which is at the higher end of child bearing age, though not unheard of.

There is another account of a family eerily similar to this family in Biographical Review : Containing Life Sketches of Leading Citizens of Worcester County, Massachusetts (Boston: Biographical Review Publishing, 1889), p. 829. The account in this book states that Thomas McKnight came to this country with the British army during the Revolutionary War, became sympathetic with the revolutionary colonialists, switched sides, and fought together with them for independence. He settled in Dudley, Worcester County, Massachusetts (near Douglas), married Annie Stewart, and fathered twenty seven children, one of whom was Reuben. It goes on to say that many of his eldest sons were early settlers of Montpelier.

It is unclear how much truth there is to this story. The Thomas who married Abigail Gould was born in Oxford, Massachusetts, not England. His father might have been born in England, later settling in Douglas; but his father would likely have been too old to fight in the Revolutionary War. The story might be a melding of two different families. So far (2022), no original records have been found to confirm the existence of Thomas McKnight and Annie Stewart.

Sources:

[1] FindAGrave.com memorial #137001757, accessed 18 Apr 2022.

[2] Deeds witnessed by Edward Davis, father of Jacob: Worc deeds 72:53, 45:420; and by Jonathan Davis, Jacob's brother: Worc deeds 147:13.

[3] 1860 U.S. census, East Montpelier, Washington County, Vermont, Alvin and Elijah McKnight residing in the same household; also 1850 U.S. census, East Montpelier, household of James Allen, with his wife, Susan (McKnight) Allen, and her great-nephew, Lemuel McKnight, grandson of Thomas McKnight, who was the brother of Susan.

[4] Argus and Patriot (Montpelier, VT), 17 Apr 1873, p. 3, identifying Lemuel and Alvin as brothers; online at GenealogyBank.com.

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