Your thoughts, please — Is it OK to link Rockcelane Holt, daughter of Silas and Mary (Brooks) Holt of Pomfret, CT (HOLT-7079) with Ebenezer Sumner of Ashford, CT (SUMNER-617) as husband and wife, based on the following:
William S. Appleton, who compiled the Sumner genealogy, noted Ebenezer’s 1st marriage, to “Roxalana Holt,” but did not further identify her. Subsequently, other Sumner researchers have thought that she was Roixanna Holt (a/k/a Roxerene or Roxilena), daughter of Nehemiah and Anna (Farnham) Holt of Windham, CT (HOLT-4702). However, there are a number of problems with this theory (details below).
I believe the 1st wife of Ebenezer Sumner of Ashford, CT to have been Holt-7079, daughter of Silas and Mary (Brooks) Holt of Pomfret, NOT her cousin,(Holt-4702), daughter of Nehemiah and Anna (Farnham) Holt of Windham.
The two cousins were about the same age (one being born in 1760 and the other in 1762) and had similar (or possibly even the same) names, for which there seem to be endless phonetic spellings and misspellings, and grew up in neighboring towns located within 10-20 miles from each other. It would be easy to confuse or conflate them.
HOLT-4702, the daughter of Nehemiah and Anna (Farnham) Holt of Windham, has long been thought by both the Holt and Hitchcock families to have married Ebenezer HITCHCOCK of Hampden County, MA (HITCHCOCK-494), and removed with him to Leicester, VT, where she died in about 1825. This belief is supported by the existence of records showing their marriage in Hampden County, MA, the birth of children to them in Ludlow, MA during the 1780s, and later, the presence of Ebenezer Hitchcock, the marriage of their son Joseph, and the death and burial of both Roxerene and Ebenezer all taking place in Leicester.
On the other hand, HOLT-7079, the daughter of Silas and Mary (Books) Holt, seems to have disappeared from history without a trace. I haven’t been able to find any record of her death or burial anywhere in Windham County. But her apparent disappearance would be explained if she is the person recorded in the Ashford records as “Roxalana” Holt, who became the 1st wife of Ebenezer SUMNER of Ashford, CT, in 1782, and the mother of their two daughters: Myra and Roxalana Sumner. The fact that Holt-7079’s parents, Silas and Mary (Brooks) Holt appear to have moved from Pomfret to Ashford (where their two youngest daughters were born) and that Silas died in Ashford and is buried there, provides Holt-7079 with a tangible connection to that locale.
It isn’t clear how the Sumner researchers decided that Ebenezer’s 1st wife was Holt-4702. They may never have discovered the existence of Holt-7079 because they never looked at the Pomfret records where her birth is recorded, and encountering the records of Holt-4702 in Windham, jumped to a premature conclusion. If anyone knows, I would love to hear from them.
Ebenezer Sumner (Sumner-617): https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Sumner-617
Rockcelane Holt of Pomfret (Holt-7079): https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Holt-7079
Roixanna Holt of Windham (Holt-4702): https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Holt-4702
Ebenezer Hitchcock (Hitchcock-494): https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/Hitchcock-494