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From Long Island, New York
to Shelby/Johnson County,
My name is Sheila D. Watson and I am a descendant of Capt. John Tucker
of Long Island, New York. Below is a brief synopsis of what you will find
on my gedcom, also on the gedcom you will find all related families that I
was able to link to Capt. John Tucker.
You will also find several links to wills that pertain to this family. Although
I have worked very hard for accuracy, as with all works of this type I'm sure
I have made mistakes. Hopefully there aren't many. I also want to thank Doug
Tucker for all his help in putting this together. My original work had several
errors in the early Tuckers, he helped me correct these and provided many of
the proofs. Below I take you from Capt. John Tucker to my great grandfather
Harvey Edward Tucker who died in Shelbyville, Indiana.
1st Generation Capt. John Tucker/Tooker
Capt. John Tucker (the Captain title derives from mariner activities after he
arrived in the Colonies) appears to have been born between 1610 and 1615,
probably in London. Researchers who insist that he was born in 1599 in Milton
Next Gravesend, Kent, the son of George Tucker and second wife Maria Darrell
are wrong. George and Maria's son John married Anne Proude in 1620 and there
is ample documentary evidence that he and Anne remained in England at least
through 1654. (Robert Denard Tucker discusses this point at length in his
1983 book on the Tucker Family of Devon). Furthermore, John Tucker of Milton,
Kent appears too old to have been the Capt. John Tucker of Long Island who was
appointed a local Constable in 1671. In 1667 he was licensed to operate an
"ordinary" at Setauket and in 1670 was licensed to "sell strong drink by
retaile" at his inn. He also served as Setauket town clerk from 1668 to 1677.
None of these activities suggest a man in his early to mid-70's as some
researchers would have us believe. Capt. John Tucker emigrated from England
before 1640 and he was a convinced, practicing Puritan. Some reports are that
he settled initially in Hingham (south of Boston, near Plymouth) while others
say he settled in Watertown (west of Boston, beyond Cambridge). I don't think
he spent much time in either place, but when he arrived, John Tucker was
married and had at least one child -- a son Charles -- and possibly other
children including a son named Samuel. (Charles was probably born in 1636 as
he was elected a Freeman at Southhold, NY on 9 Oct 1662. At the time,
Freeholder status required males to have reached the age of 26 yrs., and become
members of the local Puritan church). John's wife was named Mary -- some
reports suggest that her maiden name was Johnson and that she came from
Hingham, Norfolk. Others say her maiden name was Gardner. I have not been
able to document Mary's maiden name or her origin, but it is clear that a Mary
(?) Tucker was the mother of both Charles and Samuel Tucker. Soon after his
arrival in Massachusetts, John Tucker and his family reportedly traveled
overland to the Puritan colony established in 1639 at New Haven, CT. There,
John helped set up an iron smeltering operation and later established a coastal
shipping service that connected the New Haven Colony with its sub-colony at
Southhold, across Long Island Sound from New Haven. This shipping service
probably is the origin of the "captain" title later attached to John Tucker
at Southhold, Long Island.
Mary Tucker reportedly died in 1644 and by 1649, Capt. John Tucker had moved
across the Sound and taken up residence in Southhold. Southhold documents show
that Capt. John Tucker had acquired a house in Southhold by June 1649. By this
time, John had married his second wife Sarah whose surname also isn't known.
However I suspect that her full name was Sarah Wines and that she was the
daughter of Barnabas Wines, another Southhold resident who earlier had been a
resident of Watertown, MA. (After Sarah's death in 1685, John Tucker married
Hannah Wines, Sarah's older and twice married sister.) In 1664, Capt. John
Tucker moved from Southhold to a new settlement further east on the island
at a place called Setauket. There he farmed and established a boatyard that
Tuckers would operate for the next 150 years. John and Sarah Tucker had two
sons and five daughters. Hannah Tucker was born in Southhold in 1649. John
Tucker was born in 1653 and Joseph Tucker was born in 1655. Ruth Tucker was
born in 1660. There were three other surviving daughters but we have no names
or birth dates for them. Hannah Tucker married Richard Smith in 1670 and Ruth
Tucker married brother Daniel in 1687, both sons of Richard Smith Sr. founder
of Smithtown, Long Island. (A sister, Elizabeth Smith, married Phillip Carteret,
son of Sir George Carteret, one of the royal proprietors of New Jersey.
Elizabeth Town was named after Elizabeth Smith Carteret.) John Tucker Jr.
married Ann Wood and remained a resident of Setauket/Brookhaven. Joseph
Tucker married Dinah Brewster in 1685 and, like his brother, remained a
resident of Setauket/Brookhaven.
Sometime around 1660, the Tucker family name began being spelled Tooker
which was the traditional Devonese spelling of the name. Capt. John Tucker
authored and signed many documents which have survived, and his name was
always spelled and signed Tucker until the 1660's when the older form, Tooker,
began to reappear. Whatever the reason, the Setauket/Brookhaven Tuckers
suddenly became the Tookers although both forms of the name were carried on by
different branches of the family.)
Capt. John died in Southhold in 1692, but was buried in Setauket. His widow,
Hannah, married again in 1693 to Col. John Youngs, son of Rev. Youngs, founder
of Southhold. Hannah died in 1710 at the age of 87.
Will of Capt. John Tucker
2nd Generation Charles Tucker/Tooker, Sr.
And this brings us to Charles, eldest son of Capt. John Tucker.
In 1664, Charles Tucker, Capt. John Tucker's oldest son, was recruited by
Phillip Carteret to help settle a new colony to be established in New Jersey
which had recently been seized from the Dutch. On Feb 19, 1665, Charles was
one of 80 original "Associates" who signed an oath of "leageance and fidelty"
at the founding of Elizabeth Town, New Jersey. At the time, Charles Tucker
was about 30 years old and was reportley married to Mary Mitchell. Charles
had at least 3 sons born before 1680, John, Joseph and Charles Jr. In 1694,
Charles "Tooker" Jr. signed a list supporting the retention of Rev. John
Harrington as the pastor of the First Church of Elizabeth Town. (In 1694,
the First Church was still a Congregational or Puritan church. It converted
to Presbyterian in 1717/18.) The fact the Charles Tucker Sr. did not sign the
list suggests that he may have been dead by 1694. On the other hand, the use
of Jr. designation may mean that his father was still alive. (There was no
other Charles Tooker in Elizabeth Town area at this time.)
Charles was probably not married at the time he settled in Elizabeth Town in
1665/66. Southold records do not show any Mitchell families, however there
were two Mitchell families in Elizabeth Town. He was probably married in
Elizabeth Town. Charles Tucker Sr. was born in London, England and grew up
in New Haven, CT and Southold, Long Island and settled in Elizabeth Town in
1665. Charles Tooker Sr. of Elizabeth Town ran a blacksmith business.
Following in the Tucker/Tooker tradition of metallurgy.
3rd Generation Charles Tucker/Tooker Jr.
Much of our difficulty with tracking this family is due to the habit of third
parties converting the family's traditional Tooker spelling to Tucker before
the principals made the change. From looking at several original documents on
file at the DAR Library, our Tucker ancestors generally used the traditional
Devonese "Tooker" spelling from about 1670 to about 1770. The Westfield line
of the family appears to have been the quickest to convert to the Tucker form
of the name--the lines that remained in Elizabeth Town typically stayed with
the Tooker spelling well into the 19th century. However, I am
aware of two documents which contain the signature of Warren Tucker and in both
cases he signed his name Tooker. One is the 4 Nov 1723 will of Joseph Hallsey
of Elizabeth Town on which Warren Tooker was witness along with John Winans and
Samuel Whitehead. I had seen an abstract of this will in another
publication and the abstractor had translated the name as "Werner Tooker". See
how easily confusion can be sowed.
The 1727 list of founding members of the First Presbyterian Church of
Westfield also shows the name as Warren Tooker even though all published
versions of this list convert the Tooker to Tucker, apparently under the
assumption that the signer (or local clerk) did not know how to spell. That is
probably not the case with this family--Capt. John Tucker, of Southold attended
Oxford and may be one of the two John Tuckers of London shown on matriculation
rolls of 1629 and 1630, respectively. Several complex original legal documents
and letters drafted in Capt. John Tucker's hand have survived and are in the
special collections of the Connecticut State Library/Museum in Hartford. Capt.
John Tucker also wrote his will and a subsequent codicil which are relatively
complex documents. (He signed his will John "Tucker" even though most of his
offspring were using the "Tooker" spelling by the 1680's. Perhaps he never
taught his kids to read and write and the switch to the phonetic spelling "just
happened". However, all of his sons signed documents with their full names--not
"marks" as was common.)
"First Church records show that Charles Tooker Jr. (III) died 14 Aug
1769 at the age of 65 and was buried in the west church yard. His wife died
17 Dec. 1770 and was buried alongside Charles Jr. (III)."
If he was 65 as this says he would have been born in 1704 which will not fit
the other information we have. I wonder if the record really says he was 65
years old at the time of his death? Seventy five years old would be more
I also have the following supposedly from the Dutch Reformed Church
records of New York City, NY: Spelled different ways Tucker/Tooker/Tukker/
Tuker. The different spelling are understandable as you find this frequently
in old records. Elizabeth Town, New Jersey was only about four miles as the
crow flies west of Manhattan Island and it was only a short sail from lower
Newark Bay through the Arthur Kill and across the Hudson River to lower
Manhatton Island - which is where all the commercial action was in Nieuw
Amsterdam/New York. Elizabeth Town residents had a lot of interaction with
those of nearby New York and still do, so the records listed below are most
likely those of Charles Tucker Jr. son of Charles Tucker Sr.
Debora-Charles Tokker/Anna Wessels 5 Sept. 1697
Maria-Charles Tukker/Anna Wessels 18 Sept. 1700
Warnar-Karel Tucker/Anne Wesses 9 Dec. 1702
These are christianing dates which usually happened after the child was
born, sometimes years after. But it brings in a daughter Debora. Anna
Wessel's parents were supposed to be Warner & Debora Wessel. If this is
true then the Debora christianing in 1697 makes sense. So now do we have as
children of Charles II and Anna (Wessel) Tooker as follows (assuming they
were married abt. 1694):
Charles born abt. 1694
Warner born abt. 1696 christ 1702
Debora christ. 5 Sept. 1697
Maria christ. 18 Sept. 1700
Anna christ. Feb 1700
Sarah (no dates)
John born abt 1705
I think we still have too much second hand information. We really need to
see the records for the church and cemetery that supposedly says Charles III
was 65 when he died. SDW
The 1694 marriage date for Charles Tucker Jr. and Anna Wessells is probably
pretty close. They both signed deed of sale for 80 acres to John Thomas,
tailor of New York City in August of 1697.
Will of Charles Tucker, Jr.
4th Generation Warner Tucker/Tooker Sr.
8 miles west of Elizabeth Town is what was then called the West Fields of
Elizabeth Town. (Now known as Westfield, NJ.) West Fields was first settled
in 1695 and became a distinct settlement about 1720. In 1727, Warner Tucker is
among those listed as a founder of the First Presbyterian Church of Westfield.
There is not enough known about this first Warner Tucker/Tooker, except he is
listed in the Dutch Reformed Church Records as a child of Charles Jr. and Anna
Wessels Tucker/Tooker. Warner Tucker Sr.'s wife is unknown at this time.
5th Generation Warner Tucker Jr.
Warner Tucker lived in Westfield, New Jersey. We have no definate proof of
who his father was, but evidence points to Warner Tucker (listed above). His
grandfather was Charles Tucker, which is proven by a legacy left in Charles
Tucker's will of one hundred acres of land on the road leading to the grist mill
of Samuel Oliver (deceased). This reference is found on page 335, of Vol. 23,
New Jersey Archives. Charles Tucker's will was proved, May 6, 1740.
Warner Tucker died 1773, aged 54 years, which would place his birth as about
1719 and not old enough to have been the Warren Tucker who was one of the
constituent members of the Westfield Presbyterian Church and so we conjecture
that Warren/Warner Tucker was the father of Warner.
Warner died in 1773 at the age of 54 years and is buried in the old Baptist
Church Yard of Scotch Plains, N.J. and beside him lies his wife, Elizabeth
Lambert Tucker who died in 1785, aged 67 years. These deaths are copied from
headstones in the Scotch Plains Baptist Cemetery by Richard P. Greaves,
Dunellen, N.J. and are also found in Records of the Baptist Cemetery, Scotch
Plains, New Jersey, copied by Reignette Marsh. (Copy in the Indiana State
Will of John Lambert, grandfather of Elizabeth Lambert (listed above)
6th Generation Ephraim Tucker Sr.
Of Ephraim Tucker very little has been learned. He was born in Westfield, New
Jersey, the second son of Warner and Elizabeth Tucker. He was a soldier of the
War of the Revolution, the nature of his service has not been determined, the
only record being that he received a voucher 3200, certificate number 117 for
$680. from the Quartermaster General's Department, State of New Jersey,
Trenton, his name appearing on the rolls of the period. 1775-1783;
Office of the Adjutant General Trenton, N.J.
Ephraim Tucker received from Daniel Marsh, Quartermaster General's Department
voucher 3200, certificate 117, dated April 29, 1780, for $680.00, continental
L6:7:6, specie; interest commenced April 1, 1779; interest to January 1, 1787,
L2:19:2 3/4; same deposited in State Treasury, - Revolutionay War
We can only conclude that his service must have been of lengthy duration to
have had what was at that time a considerable sum of money due him.
Ephraim Tucker and Sarah Miller were married in Westfield, New Jersey, the
marriage ceremony performed by Rev. Benjamin Woodruff.
Sarah Miller Tucker died May 6, 1786, aged 36 years. She is buried in the
Presbyterian Church Yard at Westfield. In the records of the Presbyterian
Church at Westfield are found the records of the marriage of Ephraim Tucker and
Sarah Miller, the date they became members of the church, 1767, the baptism of
Ephraim Tucker, Jr. July 15, 1770, of Sarah, September 11, 1774 and Sabra Clark
Tucker, May 13, 1781.
Ephraim Tucker married second, Rhoda Price Valentine, she was the sister of
Abraham Price and the widow of Ephraim Valentine, she was the mother of five
children when she married Ephraim Tucker.
This indenture made this first day of August in the year of our Lord, One
Thousand seven Hundred and Ninety eight between Ephraim Tucker of the Township
of Westfield County of Essex and State of New Jersey. Yeoman of the one Part
and his dutiful son Ephraim Tucker Jur (sp) of Bernard Town County of Somerset
and State of New Jersey above sd Yeoman of the other part. Witnessesth that
the sd Ephraim Tucker Senior for and in consideration of the sum of Thirty
Pounds New York Currency, Dollars at Eight Shillings to him in Hand well and
truly paid before the ensaling and Delivery hereof by his sd son Ephraim
Tucker Jur (sp) and for other Good Causes and Considerations him here unto
(moving). The Receipt whereof the sd Ephraim Tucker Senr does hereby
acknowledge Has given, granted, bargained, sold, alienated, Enfeossed (sp),
conveyed and confirmed; and by these Presents Doth fully and absolutely Give,
grant, bargain, sell, alien, enfeoff (sp), convey and confirm unto Him the sd
Ephraim Tucker jur (sp) and to his heirs, Execrd, Adms, Assigns forever. All
that one certain Piece or Parcel of Land and Premises on which the sd Ephraim
Tucker now lives. BEGINNING at a post by the south west side of the road
leading up by the said Ephraim Tucker Senr dwelling house being the North
Corner of the Premises and is an East Corner of Nathaniel Meeker's land from
thence running with his line and binding on it Southwest Twenty two chains and
thirty Links to a walnut sapling being John Osborns Corner, thence with his
line and binding on it Southeast three chains and thirty links, to a stake
being another of said Osborn's Corners; thence still with his Line and binding
on it Southwest one chain and thirty six links to a Stone being Joseph Lamb's
corner, thence with his line and binding on it Southeast ten chains and thirty
links to a stake being Aker's Corner; thence with his line and Samuel Downers
and binding thereon, Northeast twenty four chains and ten links to a stone by
the side of the road bing at Downer's Corner; and from thence along up said
road and binding on it twelve chains and ninety three links to the beginning.
Containing Thirty Acres of Land, be the same more or less together, also, with
the Houses, out Houses and all Manner of Buildings, Fences, Orchards, Gardens,
Meadows, Pastures, Woods, Waters and all and every of the Profits, Privileges,
Advantages, Hereditaments and Appurtenances to the same belonging or in any
Manner of wise appertaining, to have and to hold all and singular of the above
bargained premises with each and every of the Appurtenances unto him the sd
Ephraim Tucker Jur (sp) and to his heirs, Excrs, Admrs and Assigns to him and
their sole and only proper use, benefit and behoof forever and the sd Ephraim
Tucker Senior does covenant, grant and agree, to and with the sd Ephraim Tucker
jur (sp) that he the sd Ephraim Tucker Senior
immediately before the Ensealing
and Delivery hereof is the true sole and lawful Owner of all and singular of
the above bargained Premises and that he is lawfully seised and possessed of
thee same in his own proper right as a good perfect and absolute Estate of
Inheritance in Fee Simple, and that the sid Ephraim Tucker jur (sp) and his
heirs, Adms, Execr and Assigns shall and may from time to time and at all times
hereafter forever by force and virtue of these Presents Lawfully forceably and
quietly have hold and occupy possess and enjoy all and singular of the above
bargained Premises, free and clear and freely and clearly, acquitted,
exonerated and discharged of and from all Manner of former and other Gifts
Grants, Bargains, Sales, Loans, Mortgages, Wills, Intails, Jointures, Dowers,
Judgements, Executions, Incumberances and Troubles in the Law whatsoever and
further, the sd Ephraim Tucker Senior does bind himself, his heirs, Exec and
Adms firmly by these Presents to Warrent and Forever Defend the sd Ephraim
Tucker jur (sp) and his heirs, Exec, Adms, and Assigns in the peacable
possession of all and singular of the above bargained Premises against the just
and lawful Claims of all Manner of Persons whosoever. In witness whereof the
said Ephraim Tucker Senior has hereunto set his hand & seal the date herein
first above written.
Sealed and delivered
In presence of Ephraim Tucker
Note: Written on the outside is---
"Ephraim Tucker Senior
to Ephraim Tucker jur ---Deed"
7th Generation Ephraim Tucker Jr.
Ephraim Tucker Jr. (son of Ephraim Tucker Sr. and Sarah Miller) was born in
Essex County, New Jersey, May 25, 1770 and died in Reily Township, Butler
County, Ohio, August 1, 1844. His will is recorded in Butler County, Ohio.
Feb. 20, 1791, he married Phebe Hand, daughter of Daniel and Mary (Cole) Hand,
born July 11, 1775 in Somerset County, New Jersey, she died in Shelby County,
Indiana, Nov 27, 1850, buried at Second Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Johnson
Will of Daniel Hand
They removed to Ohio from Essex County, New Jersey, sometime after July of
1811, this date calculated from the fact that Joseph L. Tucker, son Ephraim &
Phebe Hand Tucker was born in Essex Co., New Jersey, July 11, 1811 (Page 598,
Chadwicks History of Shelby Co., Indiana) A reference is found in Essex
County, New Jersey Deeds, Book M-2, page 249, "Ephraim and Phebe Hand Tucker
sold their 'plantation' in Westfield to John Lacey in 1808."
Odd they sold out at least 3 years before leaving the area, however the next
child after Joseph L. Tucker, was Henry Lines Tucker and he was born in Butler
County, Ohio, Nov. 17, 1814. Ephraim Tucker is buried in the Indian Creek
Baptist Church Cemetery of Butler County, Ohio. This cemetery is located four
and one half miles south-west of Oxford, Ohio. The inscription on his stone
reads as follows;
Ephraim Tucker, died August 1, 1844 aged 74 years 3m. 6d.
Will of Ephraim Tucker, Jr.
It is interesting to note that at some time or other the greater number of the
children of Ephraim Tucker and Phebe Hand Tucker were residents of Indiana.
Elijah Tucker may have been the first but he did not venture far into the
state. In 1835 he bought land in Union Township, Union County, just across the
Ohio - Indiana line and lived on his farm until his death in 1852. James Cole
Tucker, we are inclined to think, was the first of the family to venture into
the wilds of Shelby County, his daughter Sarah, who married Adam Brandt, was
born in Ohio, Feb 9, 1835, and his daughter Rhoda was married to Jefferson
Reese in Shelby County, Indiana, April 19, 1836, this would indicate the
approximate date of arrival.
8th Generation Henry Lines Tucker
Henry Lines Tucker, seventh son of Ephraim and Phebe Hand Tucker was born
November 17, 1814 in Butler County, Ohio. He married Catharine Woodruff,
January 28, 1836 in Ohio and they emigrated to Shelby County, Indiana, about
1840. (Ref. Chadwick's History of Shelby County, Indiana.) It is told that
Henry Tucker went on horseback to the home of his brother Joseph to help with
the butchering and returning home after dark laden with some of the freshly
dressed meat, he was chased by a pack of wolves and was compelled to throw the
meat to them in order to save his life. Henry Tucker and his wife Catharine
Woodruff Tucker are buried in the Second Mount Pleasant Baptist Cemetery of
Johnson County, Indiana.
9th Generation James R. Tucker
Not a lot is known about James R. Tucker, except he must have been a man with
some means. He evidently spent time in Missouri off and on. James R. Tucker
died in Missouri in 1913. His body was brought home and he is buried beside
his first wife Martha Yarborough who died in 1891. James remarried after the
death of Martha to Mrs. Kate Johnson.
10th Generation Harvey Edward Tucker
Harvey was my great grandfather. He married Elma Smiley of the Johnson County,
Ind. Smiley's. She was the gr. granddaughter of the first sheriff of Johnson
County, Ind. John Smiley. Harvey Tucker died in Shelbyville in the 1930's, but
as of this writing I have not found his grave. Elma moved on to Connorsville
after his death and is buried in the Dale Cemetery of that city.
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