Blog Archives

Goodwin & Bigelow

Volume 8 Issue 2 Summer-Fall 2001

A Mercantile Venture in Colonial Simsbury

At the Connecticut Historical Society in Hartford there is an account book that holds records for a general store and a sloop owned by Daniel Goodwin and his partner John Bigelow. The first page of the ledger states that the store opened on February 15, 1759 and that it was “in Simsbury in Connecticut in New England.” The partners were members of well established Hartford families. Daniel Goodwin was fifty-three years old and had earned the rank of Captain in the Hartford train band, or militia, and had served until 1755. He was a merchant in Hartford and John Bigelow was his nineteen-year-old stepson.

A Revolutionary Era Record

Volume 8 Issue 1 Spring 2001

John Owen’s Seventh Account Book

In February 1767 John Owen, Esq., of Simsbury opened a new leather-bound ledger and set his quill on the first of its unlined pages, each elegantly watermarked with royal symbols paying tribute to King George III of England. By the time Owen died sixteen years later, he would record his business transactions during the years immediately preceding and during the Revolutionary War. These transactions reflect much that was happening in Simsbury during this crucial period of the town’s history.

The Cornish Family in East Weatogue

Volume 7 Issue 4 Winter 2000-01

Town Records Show Extensive Land Holdings

At least seven generations of Cornishes lived and died in Simsbury. Elisha Cornish, whose account book was the subject of an article in the Summer 2000 issue of this publication, belonged to the fourth generation in Simsbury. The death of his great grandfather, “Old Mr. Cornish,” was reported in the town records in 1698. This gentleman is believed to have been born in England and to have emigrated to Connecticut before 1662. He apparently came to Simsbury to live with his son James, later known as Deacon James Cornish, a year or so before he died.

Gifford Pinchot: Early Simsbury Connections

Volume 7 Issue 3 Fall 2000

First U.S. Forester, Governor of Pennsylvania Was Born Here

Gifford Pinchot was born on August 11, 1865 in his grandparents’ summer home in the center of Simsbury. In front of that house on August 11 this year the Society of American Foresters, which Pinchot founded 100 years ago, dedicated a monument celebrating his life full of accomplishments. The New England Society of American Foresters hosted the event which featured speakers from those two organizations, the Yale School of Forestry and Environment Studies, the National Association of State Foresters, the Milford (PA) Experimental Forest, the Pinchot Institute for Conservation, representatives of the Pinchot and Eno families and local dignitaries.

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Simsbury Free Library • 749 Hopmeadow Street, P.O. Box 484 • Simsbury, CT 06070 • 860-408-1336