NOTE: The several Thomas Bliss' of New England have had their vital records, family relationships and biographical facts mixed and matched in a Gordian knot. In brief, we are dealing with three or possibly four individuals of the name Thomas Bliss:
Thomas Bliss (called Sr) b. before 1595 a founder of Hartford; wives Margaret Snowe and Margaret Hullings
Thomas Bliss of Saybrook and Norwich, b. 1618 son of #1, wife Elizabeth Birchard who may or may not be the Thomas Bliss, called Jr. in early Hartford records and counted as a founder. (and the subject of this profile)
Thomas Bliss of Rehoboth, Mass. Wife Dorothy Wheatlie, father: John
In editing the biographies of the several Thomas Bliss' I, (djt) have elected to treat Thomas Jr. of Hartford as the same person as Thomas Bliss of Saybrook and Norwich.
Thomas Bliss was baptized 23 Jan 1617/8 at St. John the Baptist, Gloucester, where his parents Thomas Blisse and Margaret Snowe were married.
A Founder of Hartford, the name of Thomas Bliss Jr. is inscribed on the East face of the Founder's Monument.
Thomas Blisse Senr and Jnr were granted lots "at The Townes Courtesie wth liberty to fetch wood & keepe swine or cowes By proportion on the common" His original grant having been 4 acres.
The February 1639 Registration of Hartford Lands: Several parcels on the Connecticut River belonging to Thomas Blisse junr.
House Lot about 2 roods , lot #129 on the map in the northwest corner.
Upland two acres in the vicinity of the Rocky hill.
This lot he sold to his father.
Thomas owned several other lots, part of a five acre lot, 6 acres, 25 acres, all of which are recorded as belonging to Thomas Bliss sr who bought them of Thomas Bliss jr.
Thomas Bliss married Elizabeth the latter end of October, at Saybrook, Connecticut. The bride may have been Elizabeth [?Birchard], b. [say 1622], d. at Norwich, 28 Feb. 1699/1700.
Saybrook was a colony on its own until 1644, about the time that Thomas Bliss married there and had most of his children. He had a house lot of thirty acres in what is now Lyme. He sold this 23 July 1662 to John Comstock. He was on the 1650 Division of Land list and present at a town meeting 7 Jan 1655.
He removed with Rev. James Fitch to Norwich in 1659/60, where Thomas was one of the original thirty five purchasers of the land that became Norwich, Connecticut. Thomas Bliss had a land allotment of five and a quarter acres with a lane on the south leading to the river.
Freeman: Thomas Bilsse and several other men from Norwich were made freeman of Connecticut at a General Assembly meeting at Hartford 8 Oct 1663.
Thomas Bliss' will is dated April 13th, 1688, two days before his death and in it provision was made for his wife Elizabeth and six daughters, and his only living son, Samuel, who was at that time thirty-one years of age. His estate was estimated at £182, 17s. 7d. He had land, besides his home lot, " over the river — on the Little Plain — at the Great Plain — at the Falls — in the Yantic meadow — in meadow at Beaver Brook — in pasture east of the town — and on Westward hill."
Children of Thomas & Elizabeth
Elizabeth, b. November 20, 1645, at Saybrook, Connecticut, m. June 7, 1663, Edward Smith of New London, Conn. This couple, with their son John, ae. 15, died of an epidemic disease in 1689 -- John on July 8th, Elizabeth on July 10th, and Edward on July 14th. A son (Capt. Obidiah, b. 1677) and six daughters went to reside at Norwich with relatives.
Sarah, b. at Saybrook, Aug.26,1647, (or perhaps 26 Aug 1656; m. Dec. 1668, Thomas Sluman, Norwich, and had six children. He died in 1683, and she afterwards m. April 8, 1686, Dr. Solomon Tracy, of Norwich, by whom she had one son. She d. Aug. 29, 1730. Dr. T. died July 9, 1732.
Mary, b. at Saybrook, Conn., Feb. 7, 1649, m..about 1672-3,David son of Dea. Hugh and Ann Caulkins, of New London, Conn., (a Welchman who came to this country about 1640, stopped at Marshfield for a short season, then removed to Lynn, Mass., thence to New London about 1652, and finally to Norwich, Conn., about 1659.) He had the estate of his father in that part of New London now known as Waterford, near Nfantic. From this union has descended the modest and diligent historian of Norwich and New London,--Miss Frances M. Caulkins, who was widely known as one of the leading antiquarian writers of her day. David Caulkins d. Nov. 25, 1717.
Thomas, b. at Saybrook, Conn., March 3, 1652. d. Jan. 29, 1682, probably unmarried.
Deliverance b. at Saybrook, Conn., Aug. 19,1655, m. June 8, 1682, David Perkins, of Norwich, Conn.
Samuel, b. at S. Dec. 9, 1657, d. Dec. 30, 1731.
Anne b. at Norwich, Sept.15, 1660, m.April 8, 1688, Josiah Rockwell of N., and d. Feb. 19, 1714-15. He d. March 18, 1728. Josiah Rockwell was a son of Josiah Rockwell and Rebecca Loomis. Of Windsor? Conn. A son Daniel, b. Oct. 24, 1689, m. Nov. 23, 1715. Tabitha Hartsborn, and d. in 1749, leaving several children, among whom was Daniel. jr., b. June 28, 1724, who m. Dec 29, 1746, Mindwell Bliss, daughter of Samuel Bliss and Sarah Packer. Of Norwich, Conn.
Rebeckah, born at Norwich, March 18, 1663, m. April 8, 1686, Israel Lathrop, of N., and d. Aug. 22, 1737. He d. March 28, 1733.
↑ Bennett, Anne Selene. "The First Wife and Older Children of Thomas Bliss of Gloucester, England and Hartford, Connecticut. The American Genealogist Vol 91, No1 January 2019. p. 43-45
↑ Collections of the Connecticut Historical Society. Vol. 6 Hartford Town Votes Vol. 1 1635-1716 p. 20, 24, 47, 50
↑ Collections of the Connecticut Historical Society. Vol. 14 Original Distribution of The Lands in Hartford Among the Settlers 1639. p. 276p. 257
↑ Connecticut Vital Records to 1850 (Online Database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011.) (From original typescripts, Lucius Barnes Barbour Collection, 1928.) ]. 8 Link at AmericanAncestors ($)
↑ 7.07.1 Jacobus, Donald Lines, 1887-1970, and Edgar Francis Waterman. Hale, House, And Related Families: Mainly of the Connecticut River Valley. Hartford: Connecticut Historical Society, 1952. Hale, House and Related Families
Barbour, Lucius Barnes, 1982, Families of Early Hartford, Connecticut, Genealogical Publishing Co. Inc., Baltimore, Maryland and Connecticut Society of Genealogists, Inc., Glastonbury, Connecticut p 388
Hyde, Myrtle Stevens. 1976. Thomas and Margaret Hulins Bliss of Hartford, Connecticut.TAG 52:193-97 and 1984 The Marriage of Thomas Bliss and Margaret HulinsTAG 60:202