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Winnifred (Unknown) Thorne (d. 1713) -- Draft Profile

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Date: [unknown] to 1713
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This is a draft profile for review by interested parties in anticipation of creating a new profile for the wife of William Thorn II (Thorne-29). The wife currently assigned to him, Linnington-21, is incorrect. We do not know Winnifred's parents or LNAB. The best thing to do with Linnington-21 is to convert her profile into that of Henry Linington's actual daughter Catherine, who married Winnifred (Unknown) and William Thorne II's son William. See also this g2g thread on the topic.

Winnifred, origins unknown, was married to William Thorne, son of William and Susannah (Booth) Thorne, who was reared in Flushing (Vlissingen), New Netherland, probably around 1662.

In reference to their sons Denton and Richard Thorne, and on the subject of Winnifred's identity, Thorn Dickinson wrote,

"It may well be that William Thorne named two of his sons, perhaps twins, for the Rev. Richard Denton, the famous leader of the Hempstead settlers. It might even be argued that Winnifred Thorne, the wife of William Thorne, whose family name is unknown, was a daughter of Richard Denton, whose children are not of record, and that Richard and Denton Thorne were christened for an illustrious grandfather. However, Winnifred Thorne signed her name with the mark "W," a very strange signature for a daughter of a Cambridge University graduate. It should be emphasized that any relationship between the Thornes and the Dentons, except through later marriages, is purely conjectural. Yet the positive statement has been made that William Thorne of Lynn, Flushing, and Hempstead married about 1639, Sarah Denton, daughter of the Rev. Richard Denton of Hempstead, and that their tenth child was named Denton Thorne (Denton Gen. 1936, MS. in N.Y. Gen. & Biog. Soc.). One suspects that Sarah Denton is a fictitious person created to fill out the name of Sarah –––, which is frequently but erroneously given as that of the wife of the first William Thorne. It would certainly be out of order to replace her in this series of articles with another imaginary daughter named Winnifred."[1]

In addition to nearly idle speculation that she could have been a Denton, many have confused records pertaining to Winnifred's husband, William II, with those of his son, William III, the result being that Winnifred has been assigned as a daughter of Henry Linington. There are a number of records that identify Henry Linington as the father-in-law of a William Thorne, but this is William III, not II, and William III's wife was Catherine Linington.

William II and Winifred were apparently resident in New Amsterdam in 1663 and for a few years ensuing. Their aforementioned son William was baptized there in the Dutch Church on 23 May 1663. Unfortunately, it appears that the Dominie misunderstood Winnifred's name and recorded her as Winne Fruyt, ommiting her last name at birth.[2]

Their second son, John, if he has been properly traced from their later residence of Hempstead to Albany, was born in New Amsterdam around, say, 1665.[3]

The Thornes were in Queens by 2 April 1677, on which date the town of Hempstead, by a majority vote of a general meeting, granted to William Thorne "a small Parsell of Medow lying a littell above his hous by the bay side on the west sid of Madnans Neck that Medow that lys against his owne land."[4] Madnans Neck is now called Great Neck.

On 1 March 1683/4, Winnifruit Thorne, wife of William Thorne, sued Hannah Cornwall, wife of John Cornwall, for defamation. The court entered a judgement of nonsuit against the plaintiff with cost of suit.[5]

William Thorne, Winnethrift Thorne and Richrd Thorne were listed adjacently and probably in a household together in the 1698 census of Hempstead. The proband and his wife oughtn't be confused with his son William's children, also named William and Winnethrift, who are listed below under William and Cathrene Thorne.[6]

William, her husband, appears to have died in the spring of 1699.

Thorn Dickinson noted that John Thorne of New York City was listed with an adult female in his household in 1703, and supposed this might have been Winnifred.[7][8] If this was she, she returned to Queens by 1713.

She may have lived next with another son, Richard Thorne in Hempstead, who in his last will of 1706 made a bequest to his sister Margarett Ratton, to be paid after the decease of his mother Winnifret Thorne.[9]

Winifred Thorne was buried at Flushing on 20 February 1713.[10]

For a list of their children, see William Thorne's profile.


  • Dickinson, Thorn. "Early History of the Thorne Family of Long Island." The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record. New York: The New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, 1961-2. Profiles of 2. William^2 Thorne, 92:178-182, 92:208-12, and 8. John^3 Thorne, 93:91-3.
  • Hicks, Benjamin D., ed. Records of the towns of North and South Hempstead, Long Island, N.Y., 1654-1880. Jamaica, New York: Long Island Farmer Print, 1896.
  • New York (State). Secretary's Office. The Documentary History of the State of New-York. Albany, N. Y.: Weed, Parsons & Co., 1849.
  1. Dickinson, 92:210.
  2. 1663 – 23 May; Wilt Toorn, Winne Fruyt; Willem; no witnesses. "New Amsterdam (New York City) New York Reformed Dutch Church Baptisms 1661 - 1665 (archived)," Olive Tree Genealogy, Lorine McGinnis Schulze, 1996-present, citing Evans, Thomas Grier. Records of the Reformed Dutch Church in New Amsterdam and New York. Baptisms from 25 December, 1639 to 27 December, 1730. Collections of the New-York Genealogical and Biographical Society. Vol 2. New York: Printed for the Society, 1901.
  3. John Thorn, a young man born at New York and living at Albany, married Geertje Bresser, born at Kingston, in Poughkeepsie on 7 February 1705/6. Holland Society of New York. Year Book of the Holland Society of New York, 1905. New York: Holland Society of New York, 1905, p. 5.
  4. Hicks, 1:309, citing Liber B:237.
  5. Hicks, 1:423, citing Liber C:54.
  6. Harris, Edward D., contrib. "The Hempstead Census of 1698." The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record. New York: New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, 1914, 45:62. In the right-hand column, William and Winnethrift Thorne and son Richard, listed above their son William and his wife Cathrene and their children, in turn listed above Sarah, Abraham and Margreat Thorne, apparently in the household of Mary Danells.
  7. Dickinson, 93:92.
  8. DHNY, 1:621.
  9. Last will and testament of Richard Thorne, ex. 8 November 1706, pr. 17 February 1706/7. New York County Wills, 7:386-8. "New York, Probate Records, 1629-1971," images, FamilySearch (accessed 18 September 2015), New York > Wills 1702-1704 vol 7 > images 242-3 of 374; county courthouses, New York. Richard named all of their children in his will.
  10. Frost, Josephine C. and Henry Onderdonk, ed. Record Kept by Rev. Thomas Poyer, Rector of Episcopal Churches At Jamaica, Newtown & Flushing, Long Island. Brooklyn, 1913. p. 50.

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