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Thomas Barnum Probate

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The probate record of Thomas Barnum reads as follows:

"To the Honorable Cort of Probate to be holden att Fairfield. Thes maye signifie unto yore honnours that we whose names are under written, namely James Beebe and Josiah Starr beeing appoynted by the Honble County Cort held at ffairefeld March ye 10 - 1695/6 to mack at distribushon of the estete of Thomas Barnam Decesed: Wee according to the best of our skills and judgment did in ye said month of March on the afforesaid 1695/6 mack ye following distrebushion of the said estete:

"To ye eldest son Thomas Barnam hee offering to tack ye with a single sheere and at halfe provided hee might have his choyce of from perticulers which accordingly we set out to him thirty pounds vallue of ye homsted and twenty one pounds vallue of ye moveables which in all made 51-0-0.

"To ye second son ffrances barnam by name Wee set out the rest of the homested being vallued at 65 pounds and a comondall of land purchesed for him by his father before his deth vallued at ffive pounds: and 7-11-6 of ye moveables hee giveing [illegible] to paye to his younger sisterswhen ye come of ye age of twentyone or at maridg what hee had received more then his proportion which proportion was 34 pounds ye whole that hee receved was 99-11-1.

"To ye third son Richard barnam by name we set out a [illegible]-lot of upland vallued at five pounds A second divition of meadow vallued att seven pounds and moveables to the vallue of 22 pounds so that hee had in all to the vallue of 34-0-0.

To ye fifth [should be fourth] son Ebenezer barnam by name we set forth it Mill Lot so called vallued at 4 pounds a third divition of meddows vallued at five pounds a little loot vallued at tow pounds the one half of ye land at Shellter Rock vallued at nine pounds the Townehill Lot vallued at six pounds; The halfe of the Cotfeld [illegible] vallued at five pounds ye six acre divition of land three pounds 10 shillings- so that the whole of what hee receved was 34-10-0

"Too John barnam the ffifth son wee set out the firt division of meddow vallued at three pounds 10 shillings ye forth divition of meddow vallued at 3 pounds 10 shillings ye swamp lot vallued att five pounds: then one half of ye land at Shellter rock valld at nine pounds the land on Shellter rock hill valld at six pounds the halfe of the Cotfeeld valld att 5 pounds ye half of the baran plain lot and the half of the six acre divition vallued at three pounds and ten shillings-so that the whole of what hee received was 34-10-0.

"To Sarah picket the wife of Thomas picket the eldest daughter wee set out In moveables of many particulers in all to the vallue of 34-0-0.

"To ye second daughter Esther Abbit the wife of John Abbit we set forth in moveables in many particulers and many due ye estete in all to the vallue of 34-0-0.

To ye third daughter Hannah barnam wee set out moveables in many particulers and depts due to the estete in all to the vallue of 34-0-0.

"To ye forth daughter Wee set out Ruth barnam by name-in moveables in many particulers and depts due to the estete in all to the value of 34-0-0.

"To ye fifth daughter Abigall barnam by name wee set out in movabels and depts due to ye estete in all to the value of 34-0-0.

//Signed// James beebe Joseph starr Distributers

"Know all men by these presents that I Sarah Barnum of Stratford in the county of fairfield and Coloney of Connecticut have received of the heirs of my late husband Thomas Barnum of Danbury deceased in full of all accounts due to me by virute of a contract made between my husband Barnum and my self before marriage therefore I doe soe order remit release acquit exonerate & discharge the administrators Heirs and assignes of the above sd Thomas Barnum deceased from all further demands whatsoever upon [illegible] of any money due to me my Heirs of assigns by virtue of any contract before mentioned in witness wherof I have herewith set my hand in Stratford this fifteenth day of March Anno Domini 1702 (date difficult to read) Witnesses Ambros Tompson senior and John Tompson her mark Sarah Barnam."

Probate: 1696 #359 FHL Film #1018731.

Family members named in the record:

  • Thomas Barnam - the eldest son
  • Francis Barnam - the second son
  • Richard Barnam - the third son
  • Ebenezer Barnam - the fifth son (should be "fourth" son)
  • John Barnam - the fifth son
  • Sarah Picket - the eldest daughter
  • Esther Abbit - the second daughter
  • Hannah Barnam - the third daughter
  • Ruth Barnam - the fourth daughter
  • Abigall Barnam - the fifth daughter
  • Sarah Barnum - wife - "heirs of my late husband Thomas Barnum"

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Comments: 6

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Is there a URL that can be added to the citation? More importantly, I assume this is the exact order of the original? In the source that gives the names of 4 of the children, and their birth dates, it lists:

"John Barnam, the sonne of Thomas Barnam, borne the 24th of ffebruary, 1677."


"Ebbinezer, the daughter of Thos. Barnam, borne the 29th of May, 1682." (either "Ebbinezer" or "daughter" is obviously an error)

In this source's order, John comes before Ebenezer by five years. So in the probate, maybe the fact that it says Ebenezer is the fifth son is correct and they just got the order of the children mixed up and John should be the fourth son?

Source: Edwin Hall The Ancient Historical Records of Norwalk, Connecticut (Norwalk: James Mallory & Co., 1847); images 207-08 of 350, pp. 191-92 at HathiTrust.org.

posted by Scott Carles
edited by Scott Carles
Hi Scott,

In short ... I was not able to supply the detail you seek because the referenced FHL film ("Probate: 1696 #359 FHL Film #1018731") wasn't readily accessible to me. I didn't further research Thomas Barnum to determine whether his probate was otherwise available.

The longer version ...

FHL film #1018731 is part of the FamilySearch catalog entry, "[Connecticut] Probate files collection, early to 1880" See https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/141959?availability=Family%20Histor[y%20Library FamilySearch Catalog].

Film 1018731 is found on page 3 of that catalog entry, and is described as, "Probate packets - Banks, Neh.-Beach, James, 1648-1880" (I had to manually page forward to find that listing; for the record, film is 1018731, FHL Digital Collection, DGS 7628143.)

This is a restricted/locked film--it is accessible from a FamilySearch Center/Library or Affiliate Library computer. Some folks may have access to these restricted films via COVID era arrangements between their local library and FamilySearch.

Separately, the information on this free space page was moved from the profile of Thomas Barnum Probate.

posted by GeneJ X
Thanks Gene. I'd found that FS page, but I was hoping I wouldn't have to sort through 17 pages looking for the right film (thanks for the p. 3 ref, though!), and then FS probate documents can sometimes be all over the place within a film, so the image number or direct URL is handy.
posted by Scott Carles
edited by Scott Carles
Though I have had no experience with these particular films, does "#359" (given in the reference) represent either the folio number or the case number? --Gene.
posted by GeneJ X
edited by GeneJ X
That just might. If I can make it to an FH Center and poke around a bit I'll see what I can see. I haven't looked at any Connecticut probate records, but the Essex probate records on FS film seems to be a mess - totally random order. So I use AmAnces for Essex now, but they only seem to have the Index for Connecticut and not the full packets. Thanks so much for taking the time to respond.
posted by Scott Carles
Just FYI.

Most of the FS Essex County probate case films are fine, but when they are a mess, like the girl with the curl, they are really a mess. And, since these are organized by case numbers which were assigned in rough alphabetical order, when one record of the surname is messed up, often many are equally so.

Not too long ago, I had to pull a great number of Rayment-Conant and related files. Probably had about 95% success. Lordy, lordy, though, about the other 5% ..... --Gene

posted by GeneJ X
edited by GeneJ X