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Josiah Churchill (1615 - abt. 1687)

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Josiah Churchill
Born in Englandmap
Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married about [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died about in Wethersfield, Hartford, Connecticutmap
Churchill-98 created 13 Sep 2010 | Last modified
This page has been accessed 2,947 times.

Categories: Wethersfield, Connecticut | Puritan Great Migration.

The Puritan Great Migration.
Josiah Churchill migrated to New England during the Puritan Great Migration (1620-1640).
Join: Puritan Great Migration Project
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Disputed Parents

There is an old claim that Josiah Churchill was the son of John Churchill and Sarah May. This claim has NOT been endorsed by leading genealogists such as Robert Charles Anderson or Douglas Richardson. Please do not add parents to this profile of Josiah Churchill without discussing first.


"Born 1 Jan 1611/12. Died after 17 Nov 1683 (will date) and 5 Jan 1686/87 (inventory) in Wethersfield CT. Married Elizabeth Foote in 1638 in Wethersfield.[1]

"Josiah Churchill (the immigrant) was born in 1613 at Muston, Dorset England. Josiah came to America as a sailor from England about midyear 1635. He married Elizabeth Foote, daughter of Nathaniel and Elizabeth Deming Foote.[2]

Children of Josiah and Elizabeth (Foote) Churchill:[3]

  1. Mary Churchill b 24 Mar 1639 married Samuel Church, son of Richard Church of Hadley, MA
  2. Elizabeth Churchill b 15 May 1642 married 31 Oct 1660 to Henry Buck of Wethersfield
  3. Hannah Churchill b 1 Nov 1644 married Jan 1667 to Samuel Royce of New London
  4. Ann Churchill b 1647 married Mr Rice
  5. Joseph Churchill b 7 Dec 1649 married 13 May 1674 to Mary Burnham [Note: extensive discussion of Mary's surname at ]
  6. Benjamin Churchill b 16 May 1652 married Mary ----
  7. a son who died aged 1 year
  8. Sarah Churchill b 11 Nov 1657 married ---- Wickham [Hinman says she married Thomas Wickham but E. S. Wells, an expert genealogist, finds the wife of Thomas Wickham and mother of his 6 children was MARY]

Early records show Josiah bought and sold real estate in Wethersfield.

"Per Judith A. Churchill, Josiah is the founder of the Connecticut Churchill's. He was one of the earliest settlers of Wethersfield, Connecticut. Wethersfield is generally considered to be the first permanent English settlement in Connecticut. Explored in 1633 by a party consisting of John Oldham and three others; Wethersfield was settled the next year. Oldham and nine others formed a group known as the 10 original settlers. They were soon joined by a party of 60 men, women and children who made the arduous overland voyage in the early fall of 1635. These original settlers all came from Watertown, Massachusetts, having been released by the church to make the settlement, an outpost of the Watertown Chuch and named likewise. Wethersfield, the oldest permanent settlement in Connecticut was first known by its Indian name "Pyquag." The name was changed to Wethersfield in 1637."[1]


1635 - Josiah was on a list of immigrants to Wethersfield.[4]
1637 - Josiah was listed as a soldier in the latter part of the Pequot Indian War.
1638 - Josiah married Elizabeth Deming Foote.
1639 - Josiah's first child, Elizabeth Churchill was born.
1639 - Josiah was listed as owning 12 1/2 acres of land in the town west of the river in "Little West Field."
1641 - Town records: B. 1, Pg. 204 reads as follows: The 2d month & 28th daie ::1641 the lands of Josias Churchell lying in Wethersfield on Connecticut River. One pece whereon his howse standeth con; six acrs more or less the ands (the ends) abutt against the hie waie west & great mea: east the sids against the waie into the great mea: south & the howse of John Jessiope (Jessup) north.

The homestead was on the east side of high street, on the north corner of an ancient road leading to the "Great Meadow" and the river. It faced the southern extremity of the Common, which stretched north from his house to the river.

1643 - 1651 Josiah served at the "Particular Court" of Wethersfield, Connecticut.
1657 - Josiah served as Town Constable.
1659 - Town records B. 1, Pg 205 reads as follows: The hom lot of Josias Churchell which he bought of Mr. Tantor (Taintor) which was Gildersleeves formerly living in Wethersfield, on Connecticut River. This homestead of Richard Gildersleeves was on the west side of High Street, a few doors south of Mr. Churchill's earlier home.

Josiah continued to acquire land and had considerable holdings. There are several maps that have the listings of each property. A copy can be purchased from the Historical Society in Wethersfield. The 50 acre lot that Josiah had at the west end of Wethersfield, a generation later became know as the parish of Newington.

1664 - Josiah served at the "Quarter Court" in Wethersfield, Connecticut.
1665 - Josiah served at the "Quarter Court" in Wethersfield, Connecticut.
1666 - Josiah served at the "County Court" in Wethersfield, Connecticut.
1666 - Josiah served as Town Surveyor.
1670 - Josiah served at the "County Court" in Wethersfield, Connecticut.
1670 - Josiah served as Town Constable.
1673 - Josiah served as Town Surveyor.
1675 - Josiah served at the "County Court" in Wethersfield, Connecticut.
1683 - Josiah's Last Will and Testament was dated 17 November 1683

Josiah died after will dated 17 Nov 1683 and before inventory taken 5 January, 1687. [court record page 246]

1686/7 - Josiah's Last Will and Testament was proven 3 March 1686/7. [court record page 128] [5]

Treat and John Buttolph, selectmen of Wethersfield and was found to amount to 618 pounds, 12 shillings and 6 pence. This inventory shoews that at his death he owned two home lots and two hundred and ten acres of land. He left his son Joseph "that house and home lot he now lives on" together with "all other buildings thereon." He left to Joseph also several other pieces of land and a fifty acre lot, "at ye west end of Wethersfield bounds" in the newly settled tract which later became the parish of Newington. He left to his son Benjamin a number of pieces of land and the old homestead at the decease of his mother. According to the custom of the times his daughters were given certain shares of "movable estate." Among the items in the inventory are "a great Chist," and "2 bibells and other books." This "great Chist" probably reappears in the inventory of his son Joseph whis specifies a chest with the initials "J. C." as well as a piece of "Turkie work."

Last Will and Testament

I, Josiah Churchill of Wethersfield do make this my last Will and Testament: I give unto my wife Elizabeth Churchill the use of all my estate, whether real or personal, during her natural life, excepting such parcels of land as shall hereafter be excepted, she paying all my Just Debts and after her decease my Will is that all my Land and other Estate of mine she shall then stand possessed of, to be divided as follows: I give unto my son Joseph the House and Home-lott he now liveth on, with all other Buildings thereon, and one Lott in the Little West field, containing 10 acres, and another Lott containing 6 acres. I give unto my son Joseph my 50-acre Lott at the West End of Wethersfield Bounds. I do give unto my son Joseph, after the decease of my wife, Elizabeth, 5 acres in the Great Swamp, and 2 acres of Meadow lying toward the lower End of sd. Meadow, and half of my 5-acre Lott at the upper End of the Great Meadow. I give unto my son Benjamin Churchill 6 acres in the Little West Field, also 10 acres more in the West Field. I give unto my son Benjamin, after the decease of my wife, my now Dwelling House and Home-lott and other buildings upon sd. Lott, and 7 acres of Land in the Great Swamp, and 4 acres in Beaver Meadow, and half my 5-acre Lott at the upper End of the Great Meadow. My will is that all the rest of my Moveable Estate be equally divided betwixt my daughters Marah Church, Elizabeth Buck, Ann Rice and Sarah Wickham. My will is that my wife be sole Executrix. Witness: Samuel Talcott, John Deming[1][6]


Josiah Churchill died about January 1, 1686-7[7][1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Find A Grave Memorial# 34156325 created by: Linda Mac Josiah Churchill (Extensive Biography & Will)
  3. "Churchill Family in America" complied by Gardner Asaph Churchill, Nathaniel Wiley Chuchill and George M. Bodge, publ by the family of Gardner A. Churchill, date 1904 handwritten, pp 323-325
  4. Virkus, Frederick A., editor. Immigrant Ancestors: A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1964. 75p. Repr. 1986. Page: 20. Source Publication Code: 9448
  5. "A Digest of the early Connecticut probate records" compiled by Charles William Manwaring, vol 1 1635-1700, publ 1904 pg 287
  6. "A Digest of the early Connecticut probate records" compiled by Charles William Manwaring, vol 1 1635-1700, publ 1904 pg 287
  7. Churchill, Boyd R. [BRC] Leonard Hubbard Churchill, His Ancestors and Descendants, with a Brief History of the Times, 1972, p6, reprinted by Enhance Printing, LLC. and is buried within Newington Cemetery, Newington, Hartford Co., CT.

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No known carriers of Josiah's Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA have taken yDNA or mtDNA tests.

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Images: 1
Josiah's Biography in [BRC]
Josiah's Biography in [BRC]


On 27 Apr 2017 at 04:27 GMT H Husted wrote:

Churchill-98 and Churchill-827 appear to represent the same person because: Churchill-827 has no family members or sources and should be merged away. There's no doubt they represent the same man, as several websites such as this one and this one have attributed the birth place of Josiah Churchill as Muston, Dorset or Dorset. Both websites refer to The history of ancient Wethersfield, Connecticut but that work states "nothing is definitely known of him until he is mentioned as the fortunate husband of a daughter of Nathaniel Foote."

On 4 Mar 2016 at 20:47 GMT Nova (Anderson) Weller wrote:

Churchill-827 and Churchill-98 are not ready to be merged because: There is note enough evidence that they are the same person. The only thing we have is they were born in the same year.

On 12 Nov 2014 at 15:51 GMT PM Eyestone wrote:

Churchill-761 and Churchill-98 appear to represent the same person because: Churchill-761 should be merged into Churchill-98

Husband of Elizabeth Foote - Josiah Churchill - sources The Abridged Compendium of American Genealogy, published in Chicago by the Institute of American Genealogy. Virkus, Frederick A., editor. Immigrant Ancestors: A List of 2,500 Immigrants to America before 1750. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1964. 75p. Repr. 1986. Page: 20.

On 25 Jun 2014 at 12:28 GMT H Husted wrote:

If you have access to 2003's "The descendants of Josiah Churchill (c. 1615-1686) and Elizabeth Foote (1616-1700)", would you kindly review the biography in this profile?

Josiah is 14 degrees from Kevin Bacon, 12 degrees from Joseph Broussard, 19 degrees from Helmut Jungschaffer and 17 degrees from Queen Elizabeth II Windsor on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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