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Adam Nicholls

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Adam Nicholls
Born [date unknown] in Englandmap
Son of [father unknown] and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
[children unknown]
Died in Hartford, Hartford, Connecticut Colonymap
Profile manager: Anne B private message [send private message]
Profile last modified | Created 7 Feb 2011
This page has been accessed 307 times.

Categories: Signers of the New Haven Fundamental Agreement | New Haven, New Haven Colony | Hartford, Connecticut.


New Haven

Savage says Adam Nicholls was of New Haven 1645 or earlier.[1] It was definitely earlier. Adam Nicholls is on the list of later (1639-1644) signers of the fundamental agreement.[2] He was on an early list of freeman[3], having taken the freeman's oath 11 June 1640[4] and he took the Oath of Fidelity in 1644 with the other male inhabitants of New Haven.[5]

He did his civic duty by serving on a viewing committee in 1641.[6] All able bodied men served in the train band and as part of the watch.

Adam had his share of fines: 1643 5s for lack of a ladder,[7] 1644 for being late to the Lord's day with his armes,[8] 1648 late for watch,[9] for neglect of fence.[10][11] In 1646, Adam Nichols was warned to court. He didn't show up, or give notice of submission and was again warned to the next court, when he would also answer for contempt. At the next court, Nichols said he forgot. He was fined 10s for contempt and 1s for want of worme and scourer.[12] These items were part of the musket "bag." A worm was used to extract wads from failed charges, and a scourer stick was used to clean the barrel.

Nichols had the number two lot in the land division described as "the land for the small lotts on ye banke side and by ye west creeke was appoynted to be layd out, as their lotts were drawne in order as followeth."[13] He bought 24 acres from Edward Wigglesworth,[14] and he sold 6 acres in the Yorkshire quarter to Christopher Todd in March 1651/2[11] He and his wife had assigned seats at the First Church of New Haven[15] They were dismissed from the church in New Haven in 1654,[16] at which point they went to Hartford.


Adam Nichols married (about 1645) Ann the daughter of Francis and Anne (Goode) Wakeman). She was baptized 3 July 1614 in Bewdley, co. Worcester, England.[17]

We know her name from the will of her brother John Wakeman, dated 18 4th month 1660

"Item. I give vnto my brother in law Adam Nicholls of Hartford my cloath cloake and the suite of the same which was my cousin John Walker's, and my grey hatt, and I give vnto his wife, my sister Anna Nicholls, ten pounds to be wholly at her own disposing, and to theyr four children twenty shillings apiece, namely, John, Hannah, Sarah, and Ebenezer, all which is my will should be paid to them wthin six moneths after my decease."[18][19]


In 1655, he was of Hartford.[1] He was on the tax lists in 1655 (rate 00 04 05), 1656 (00 06 06) and 1657 (00 17 02). [20] He was still there in 1660 when he was called of Hartford in John Wakeman's will.[18]


He went to Hadley in 1661.[1] Son John drowned in Hadley in 1662.[17]


Next he was a freeman of Boston 1670.[1]. [21]

Death & Will

Adam returned to Hartford before his death there 25 Aug. 1682.[1] Savage believed he had only one child left at the time of his death, Esther Ellis.

His inventory states his death on 3 August 1682. Before his death he was living with Goodman Parks, who was maintaining him. He was in debt more than the value of his estate which was about 8 pounds. "Goodwife peck allso gave an account off four napkins Addam Nicols gave to his daughter Ester Ellis and one Bellmettle Skillet when his daughter was last att said parks; and left one Napkin att Haddam when he went down to vissett his son & dafter; half a sheet and one Napkin more was disposed off for his Buriall"[22]

The highlighted sentence above from his probate documents is certainly open to several interpretions. 1) Ester Ellis and her husband lived in Haddam. 2) Ester Ellis and a brother and sister were still living. 3) Ester and her brother and the brothers wife were alive. or 4) Ester and a sister and the sister's husband were alive. At any rate no records for Ester Ellis have been found in Connecticut, and no records for Ebenezer Nichols in Haddam.


Born in New Haven.
1. John, bapt. 11 Aug. 1645;[23][17] John drowned in Hadley in 1662. [17]
2. Barachiah, bapt. 14 Feb. 1646/7;[17]
3. Chloe, 8 March 1649/50 bapt. as Hester 10 Mar. 1650;[17]
4. Lydia, b. 28 Feb. 1651/2;[17]
All of the above except John must have died young because they were not mentioned in John Wakeman's will.[18]
Mentioned in Uncle Johns will.[18]
John from above
5. Hannah
6. Sarah
7. Ebenezer
Only child mentioned in estate of Adam
8. Esther m. Ellis[22]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Savage, James. A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England Showing Three Generations of Those Who Came Before May, 1692. Vol. I-IV. Boston, MA, USA: 1860-1862.
  2. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 18
  3. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 9
  4. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 35
  5. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 138
  6. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 61
  7. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 121
  8. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 134
  9. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 396 , p. 400
  10. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 436
  11. 11.0 11.1 Dexter, Franklin Bowditch (editor) Ancient Town Records Vol 1. New Haven Town Records 1649-1662. New Haven: New Haven Colony Historical Society, 1917. pp. 26, 111
  12. Source: #Hoadley1 pp 271, 278
  13. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 50
  14. Source: #Hoadley1 p. 370
  15. Source: #Hoadley1 pp 303/4
  16. Historical Catalogue of the Members of the First Church of ..., Parts 1639-1914. compiled by Franklin Bowditch Dexter. New Haven: 1914
  17. 17.0 17.1 17.2 17.3 17.4 17.5 17.6 Jacobus, Donald Lines (compiler). Families of Ancient New Haven, Vol I-VIII. and Index Vol IX New Haven: 1931. Reprint, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1974, 1981, 1997. Originally published as New Haven Genealogical Magazine, Volumes I-VIII. Rome, NY and New Haven, CT 1922-1932.
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 Wakeman, Robert P. Wakeman Genealogy 1630-1899. Meriden: Journal Publishing Co., 1900.
  19. Hoadley, Charles J, MA. (editor) Records of the Colony or Jurisdiction of New Haven, From May 1653 to the Union. Hartford: Case, Tiffany and Company, 1858. footnote p. 448
  20. Original Distribution of The Lands in Hartford Among the Settlers 1639 Vol. 14 of Collections of the Connecticut Historical Society (The Connecticut Historical Society and the Society of Colonial Wars in the State of Connecticut, Hartford 1860-1928). p. 496 at Archive
  21. Massachusetts: Miscellaneous Censuses Substitutes, 1630–1788, 1840, 1890 (Online database. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2013. From records supplied by
  22. 22.0 22.1 Connecticut County, District and Probate Courts. Probate Packets, Neuberth-Norris, G, 1641-1880. Hartford Probate District. Adam Nichols. 1682 #3912
  23. Connecticut, Church Record Abstracts, 1630-1920 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: 2013. Images of Original: Connecticut. Church Records State Library Index. New Haven First Congregational Church. Part 2, J-Z, 1639-1937. Hartford, Connecticut: Connecticut State Library, 1947.

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