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The Sayre family of Long Island

The line of Joseph5 Sayre  (Thomas4, Francis3, William2, William1) born Abt. 1627 in Bedfordshire, England, and died Bef. 05 December 1695 in Elizabethtown,  Essex Co.,NJ. was donated by Beverly Schonewolf

    Joseph Sayre was born probably in Bedfordshire, England, married Martha ______.  On the fragment of town records in Southhampton, Long Island is the following:  Monday Jan. 13, 1667, laid out for Job and Joseph Sayre on the north side of Lieut. Post's, by Francis Sayre, on ye South side 51 poles; on the north side 48 poles; on ye East side 30 poles, on the West side 32 poles, for 10 acres."
     He removed from Southhampton in 1665 to Elizabeth, New Jersey, and was named as one of the proprietors in Elizabeth in a deed from Richard Nicholls, Governor.  He signed a petition to the Governor in December, 1667; was a witness there October 4, 1671, and took the oath of allegiance to the Dutch September 11, 1673.
     He was a tanner as well as a farmer, and received 40 pounds in merchandise by his father's will towards setting him up as a tanner.  He also received one third of his father's household effects, from which possibly it might be inferred that at that date he was not yet married, or had just begun housekeeping.
     April 11, 1676, a warrant for the survey of 180 acres of land at Elizabeth was issued to him. Hatfield's "History of Elizabeth" (pp. 167-183) gives the following list of lots, at Elizabeth, belonged to Joseph Sayre:
     His house lot of 5 acres was bounded on the north by Robert Bond, west by the Mill Creek, east by the Highway, and south by Benjamin Homan. He had also 9 acres of upland in the plaine, adjoining Daniel DeHart; also 12 acres of upland adjoining Rev. Jeremiah Peck and Joseph Meeker; also 9 acres of upland on the small neck Robert Bond and Robert Vauquellen, also 36 acres of upland near a swamp and adjoining George Peck; also 35 acres of upland adjoining Hurr Thompson; also 10 acres of meadow at Woodruff's Creek; and 4 acres on Elizabethtown Creek.  In all 142 acres.
     This list cannot be complete, as it does not include the 180 acres mentioned above nor the land referred to in this item:
     "In 1699-1700 John Megie drew a 100 acre lot between Joseph Sayre and Benjamin Lyon and the foot of the mountain."
     In 1694 he subscribed 1 pound towards the support of the Presbyterian minister, Rev. John Harriman.
    He died in 1695.  His will. dated December 4, 1695, was apparently proved the same day, and reads as follows:
     In the name of God, Amen, I, Joseph Sayre of Elizabeth Town in ye county of Essex and Province of East New Jersey, Yeoman, Being weak and sick in body but of perfect understanding and memory as at any other times, Doo make, Ordain, and appoynt this my last Will and Testament, hereby nulling and Makeing voyd and of none effect any and all manner of will or wills, Testament or Testaments whatsoever by me made at any time here before Either by word of mouth or in writing, by these Psants Establishing and confirming this to be and Remain my last Will and testament.  In which first I bequeath my Soul to God who gave it and my body to ye Dust out of wch it was taken to Receive a Decent Christian buriall, and for that worldly Estate wch God hath endowed me with I Dispose of as followeth viz; Imprimis. I give and Bequeath unto my wel beloved wife Martha and to her heirs and assigns for Ever the One third part of all my moveable Estate; (One Ox, one Cow, one Steer Come Two year old and one heipher Come three year old only excepted wch at ye making hereof Doo properly belong to my son Thomas Sayre.)  and further I Give and bequeath unto my sd Wife the one third part of all my Houseing and Lands During her
     Item.  I Give and bequeath unto my wel beloved Son Thomas Sayre all my now Dwelling houses and Barn and home lot to ye sd Thomas, paying to my Sonne Ephraim Sayre ye summe of five pounds Currt money when he comes to ye age of one and twenty years and to his heirs and assigns forever.
     Item.  I Give and bequeath unto my sd Sonne Thomas Sayre and to his heirs and assigns forever my bay lot of Meadow with all ye privileges and apurtenances to ye same belonging.
     Item.  I give and bequeath unto my Sonne Daniell Sayre all that my lot of land lying and being in Elizabeth town aforesaid Joyning to ye land of Benjamin Trotter
and to his heirs and assigns forever, and all my Right in ye new field and ye one half of all that my lot of Meadow lying and being by Mr. Woodruff's Creek, ye whole
lot being by Estimacon Ten acres of Meadow be ye same more or be it less.
     Item.  I Give and bequeath unto my Sonne Ephraim Sayre and to his heirs and assigns forever all that my lot or Piece of Land lying and being in ye Great Neck of sd Elizabethtowne Joyning to ye land of Joseph Meaker being by estimacon twenty two acres of land be it more or less and all my share of land in partnership with
Benjamin Meaker, Joseph Meaker, and John Thompson, deceased; and ye one half of what my lot of meadow by Mr. Woodruff's Creek above named and all other rights and privileges in Elizabethtowne aforesd to me belonging not disposed of in ye above Donations (namely of lands and heridatements) I Equally Devide between my three sonnes above named.
     Item.  I give and bequeath unto my sd Sonne Ephraim Sayre one Good Cowe and one of ye biggest of my Pewter platters.
     Item.  I give and bequeath unto my four children, namely Thomas, Daniel, Ephraim and Sarah all ye Remainder of my moveable estate to be Equally devided among them.
     Item.  I ye sd Joseph Sayre Doo make, Ordaine, Constitute and apoynt my Trusty and wel beloved friends Mr. Benjamin Meaker and Mr. Daniel Price to be ye Executors of this my Last Will and Testament, and in Confirmation hereof I, the said Joseph Sayre have to this my Last Will and Testament, and set my hand and fixed my Seale In Elizabethtown aforesd this fourth day of December, One Thousand Six Hundred and
ninety five.
 Signed and Sealed, Joseph Sayre (L.S.)

Published and declared to be ye Testator's last Will and testament in Ye Prescence of us Witnesses:  Benjamin Meeker, Henry Willright, Saml Whitehead

  Elizabethtown 4th Decrr Anno Dom 1695.
 Benjamin Meeker & Saml Whitehead two of ye Wittnesses of ye above written Instrument came before me Commissionated for takeing ye probate of Last Wills &
Testaments and did each of them Solemnly Sware by ye Ever liveing God that they did see ye above Joseph Sayre Sign, Seal publish & declare ye above sd Instrument to be his Last Will and Testament & at ye time thereof he was of Sound mind & perfect memorie to the best of their and each of their knowledge & understanding.
   (signed) Thomas Gordan.

NOTES ON Thomas Sayre: Before 1638 First Sayre To Emigrate From Eng.To Colonies, Probably Near Age 40,

    Lynn, Mass. was settled in 1629.  In 1638 the committee appointed to divide the lands completed their work, and a book was provided in which were recorded the names of the proprietors with the number of acres allotted to each.  This book is lost, but the first three pages have been preserved, and on the first page appear the names of Thomas Sayre, sixty acres, and Job Sayre (his brother) sixty acres.
    From Lynn six colonies had been sent out prior to 1640 to make settlements elsewhere.  In the preceding year (1639) another colony undertook to make a settlement on Long Island.  They invited Mr. Abraham Pierson of Boston, to become their minister, who, with seven of the emigrants, entered into a church covenant before they left Lynn.  The eight "undertakers," as they were called, purchased a sloop for the transportation of their families and goods for 80 pounds, Thomas and Job Sayre each contributing 5 pounds as his share.  Articles of agreement dated March 10, 1639/40 were drawn up and signed.  A copy will be found in Howell's "History of Southampton."
    In 1648 Thomas Sayre built the house on the town lot apportioned him in that year;  which is undoubtedly the oldest English house on Long Island, or in the state of New York.  It is still habitable, and had never passed out of the hands or occupancy of the family, until in 1892, upon the death of Mrs. Sarah (Sayre) Larry, it fell to her heirs, and was sold to settle her estate.  It later belonged to her son, Capt. Larry.  It stands on the west side of the main street, north of the academy, cornerwise to the road, a rod or so back from the fence, surrounded by rose bushes and fragrant shrubbery, and shaded by tall trees which are young in comparison to the age of the house.  The great chimney, the narrow windows, the massive frame, are all as they were; and the endurance of the old mansion is not yet half tested.  The original roof, no doubt, was thatched, as were those of the church, parsonage and jail, built about the same time.  And a village ordinance required that a permanent ladder reach from the chimney to the ground as a precaution against fire.
    Job's Lane, or the Academy Lane, was originally a portion of Thomas Sayre's homestead, and was given to the town as a thoroughfare by his son Job.
    Since this description was written several small houses have been put up on Main Street in front of the "old Sayre house," and a fine Public Library has been erected on Job's Lane so that the house is not now visible from the streets.  This venerable relic is now neglected and efforts should be made to purchase it by the town and preserve it as an historical monument.
    Thomas Sayre was a prominent man among the founders, as appears from the following extract from the town records:
     October 10, 1649:  at a General Court he was one of three men chosen "to agitate town business, and they are to havethe same authority that the five men had the last year."  Thisis the first record extant of the choice of town rulers, and he may have held office earlier.
     October 6, 1651:  he was one of the five men chosen "for governing of town affairs" - "to act and order all town affairs whatsoever excepting matters of admitting of inhabitants or giving of lands."
     October 6, 1654:  he was chosen one of three "Townsmen".
     March 6, 1657:  He was chosen at a town meeting as one of six men "to act and conclude concerning a difference concerning land which east Hampton men make within our bounds."
     At a court, June 19, 1657 he was one of five men "chosen to lay out roads and view fences."
     December 9, 1658 at a town meeting, he was chosen to be "overseer for mending the bridge."
     October 1648 he "was allowed for his basedrum the sum of thirteen shillings, and his year begins the said day."  There being no church bells, a drummer was employed to go round the town and summon people to church and town meetings.
    He was probably of a quick temper, and not slow to express his opinions evenabout those in authority, as is evidenced by the following:
     November 18, 1644 "Thomas Sayre was censured for some contemptuous carriage to Mr. Gosmer, being Magistrate, to pay ten shillings and to make public acknowledgment ofhis offense, which if he shall refuse, then to be liable to pay forty shillings."
     March 1653 "Thomas Sayre and Joshua Barnes for speaking unseemly and unsavory words in the Court or concerning the Court were fined to pay ten shillings each.  Note - ye fines remitted upon their acknowledgment March 6, 1654."
    His original will, with autograph signature, is preserved in the office of the Surrogate, New York, and is recorded there in Liber I, folio 63.
It reads as follows:
     In ye name of God, Amen.  I, Thomas Sayre of South Hampton on Long Island in the Com. Nov: Yorke, being in perfect strength of mind, blessed be ye Lord for it, but weake of Bodye, not knowing ye day of my appointed change doe make this last Will and Testament, in manner following:
     "Imprimis.  I give and freely bequeath my Soule unto God that gave it and my Body unto earth from whence it was first taken.
     2d.  I give unto my sonne ffrancis Sayre 2 acres of land lyeing next unto his own in Copt Neck in ye Great Playnes and 2 acres more of land lyeing in ye Eight acres Lotts in ye said Great Playnes, a pewter fflaggon, A Pewter Bowl, and great Pewter Platter.
     3d.  I give unto my sonne Daniell Sayre 2 acres of land lyeing next unto ye above said two acres in ye said Eight acre Lotts, and three acres more of Land lyeing in the Ten acre Lotts, and one great Pewter Platter.
     4th.  I give unto my sonne Joseph Sayre, ffourty pounds Sterling to be paid him by my Executor Ten pounds per annum to beginne wth in five years next after my decease to be paid in good Merchant's Shoos or other pay that will procure Hides toward his setting up as a Tanner.
     5th.  I give unto my daughter Damaris Atwater ffourty Shillings.
     6th.  I give unto my daughter Mary Price ffourty Shillings.
     7th.  I give unto my daughter Hannah Sayre Twenty pounds to be paid at her day of marriage or when she shall be eighteen years of age which shall first happen and that my Executor doe keep her Cow and Calfe and their increase for her untill she shall be either married or in some other capable way to maintain them.
     8th.  I give my household goods to be equally divided between my sons Job and Joseph and Hannah, and that when they be divided, Hannah have her first choice of ye parties.
     9th.  Lastly.  I by this last Will and Testament have made my son Job Sayre my sole Exacutor to receive all my Worldly estate, both of Housing, Lands, goods and Cattle and Debts due to me from any person or persons, and to pay all debts due from me and all Legacyes specified.
     In witness whereof I have hereunto sett my hand and seale this 16th day of September, 1669."

Signed, sealed and delivered in ye presence of


ADDITIONAL NOTE ON  Margaret Aldrich
NOTE:  some question has been submitted that this might not be the spouse of Thomas.
RE  Email from  Ralph Sayre
    It seems that I am the only one puzzled by this set of data accompanying Margaret Aldrich ( and in some cases Aldred ).  I have tried for years to track down the source of this name.  Clarence A. Torrey published that death date in his book, NEW ENGLAND MARRIAGES PRIOR TO 1700.  I should say NEGHS did; he was deceased when the book published.  Anyway he used the surname Aldred.  I had his source material searched at NEGHS and nothing turned up to show where he got that name and the accompanying notations.
     Some secondary sources have given parents to Margaret Aldred as John and Agnes (Ross) Aldred--but to everyone that I have inquired, no primary source is known. If anyone can add light to this please email either Ralph or Long Island Genealogy