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signature from Caleb's will when he was about 61



Caleb and his family probably lived in or close to what is now downtown Norwalk on the west side of the Norwalk River. His father deeded him land, but I haven't found specifically where in town it was. He also bought land in a newly developing part of town to the north known as "Canaan Parish," later the separate town of New Canaan. More about him is likely in the Norwalk town records.

This is a transcription of Caleb's will:

In the name of God amen the third day of September in the year of our Lord 1747 I Caleb Hoyt of Norwalk in the County of Fairfield and Colony of Connecticut in New England being weak of body but of perfect mind and memory thanks be given to God, therefore calling unto mind the mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed for all men once to dye do make and ordain this my last will and testament that is to say first I give and recomend my soul unto the hands of God who gave it hoping through the merits death and pasion of my savior Jesus Christ to have the full and free pardon of all my sins and to inherit everlasting life and my body I comit to the earth to be decently buryed at the discression of my executors hereafter named. And as touching such worldly estate which it hath pleased God to bless me with in this life I dispose of as followeth my just debts being first paid

Item I give and bequeath to my well beloved wife Mehitabel the one-half of my homestead so long as she continues my widow also my will is that my sons Benajah David and Caleb shall find my sd. wife a cow to milk during her widowhood and that my sd. sons shall maintain sd. cow in equall proportion and to find my sd. wife with broad corn and meat and firewood at the door and all other necessaries for her comfortable subsistence so long as she continues my widow also one feather bed and furniture to be at her dispose

Item I give and bequeath to my loving and dutiful sons Benajah and David and their heirs and assigns forever all my lands at Canoo Hill and Kellogg Medow so-called to be equally divided between them both for quantity and quallity

Item I give and bequeath to my loving and dutiful son Caleb half my homestead at my decease and the other half of my homestead I give to my sd. son Caleb his heirs and assigns forever at my wife's decease or marriage also I give to my son Caleb all the residue of my lands not already disposed of

Item I give and bequeath to my daughter Rhodah Hayes six pounds besides what I have already given her towards her portion

Item my daughter Mehitable Bennedick hath received her portion equall with what I give to my other daughters now in my wills

Item I give to my daughter Adah Smith twenty pounds besides what I have already given her towards her portion

Item I give to my daughter Deborah Hanford twenty pounds besides what I have given her towards her portion

Item my salt meadow and half mile iland I give to my three sons as they have divided it

Item all the rest of my personal estate not before disposed of I give to my well beloved wife Mehitable to make use of as she needs for her comfortable subsistence and at her decease or marriage to be equally divided between my four daughters Rhodah Mehitable Adah and Deborah

Item I give and bequeath to my three sons all my wearing apparell to be divided amongst them

Finally I do hereby appoint my well beloved wife and my three sons Benajah David and Caleb executors of this my last will and testament disanulling all former wills and bequests or legacies confirming this and no other to be my last will.

In witness whereof hereunto set my hand and seal the day and year above written.

Signed sealed published pronounced and declared by the testator as his last will and testament

Caleb Hoyt

In the presence of

Thad. Hanford
Joseph Jones
Matthew Smith



children of Caleb Hoyt and Mehitabel Keeler:

Benajah b. 8 December 1708
David b. 3 December 1710
Rhoda
Mehitable
Caleb
Ada
Deborah



vital records sources: Caleb's marriage and death dates come from a compiled family record in Edwin Hall, The Ancient Historical Records of Norwalk (1847), 198.

1. Fairfield County deeds, 4:216 (5 April 1710).
2. Ibid, 4:434 (27 July 1713).
3. David W. Hoyt, A Genealogical History of the Hoyt, Haight, and Hight Families (Providence:1871), 325.
4. Fairfield County deeds, 6:308 (25 Jan. 1738/39).

all text and photographs © 1998-2020 by Doug Sinclair unless where otherwise noted