PUBLISHER: J.H.BEERS & CO., CHICAGO; 1903      P.  729

GILBERT FAMILY.  Samuel Gilbert came from Massachusetts to Hebron in the early settlement of Hebron, and lived and died in a house near Bliss’s sawmill.  He is named among the proprietors to whom patents were issued on the organization of the town of Colchester in 1698 and 1703.  Samuel Gilbert, Jr., his son, built the house which stands one mile east of Gilead, where the road strikes the Bolton road.  There his family were born and reared, and the place long bore the name of the Gilbert homestead.  Samuel Gilbert, Jr., who was born in 1711 and died in 1774, had two wives, Elizabeth, the mother of Samuel and Elizabeth; and Abigail (the daughter of Samuel Rowley), whose children were:  Thomas;  Anna;  John;  Abigail;  Sylvester, who was a distinguished member of the legal profession, and a member of the early judiciary of the State; and Gardner.

Samuel Gilbert, the eldest son of Samuel, Jr., born June 3, 1734, was better known as Col. Samuel Gilbert.  His children by his first wife, Lydia Post, were:  Lydia, who married Ralph Mack;  Samuel Augustus, who died young;  George Oliver, who died in Wisconsin.  Col. Samuel Gilbert was married the second time, Sept. 3, 1775, to Deborah Champion, of Colchester, a sister of Gen. Henry Champion.  Their children were:  Samuel Augustus (2);  Elizabeth;  Sarah, who died young;  Payton Randolph;  John Henry;  Sarah (2);  Abby Maria; and Charles Champion.

Col. Samuel Gilbert, was the first chief justice of the Tolland county court.  In stature he was a man of majestic proportions, standing over six feet in height, and carrying his weight with much dignity and self-possession.  His manners were polished and courtly, and he bore himself with the ease and grace of the old school gentleman.  For many years he was connected with the militia service, and was colonel of a regiment when military titles were regarded as some evidence of the worth and character of a man.  As a lawyer he had little preparation for a legal career, but he studied and prepared himself by wide reading and close observation for a very successful career.  Without the advantage of college training, his style of address was singularly lucid and intelligent, and his well known integrity, honesty and devotion to the right, gave weight and force to his appeals.  With candid appearance and inspiring fairness he could reduce every proposition to its primal elements, and if there was wrong in it, he could make the jury see it so clearly that no sophistry could blind them to the full force of what he was putting before them.  For twenty-one years Col. Gilbert was retained on the bench of Tolland county.  For twenty sessions he represented the town of Hebron in the General Assembly.

The veneration and respect that Judge Gilbert and his wife always showed each other was remarkable, and worthy of universal imitation.  It is a tradition that Judge Gilbert never permitted himself to wear his hat in the house; and that she always rose when he entered the room, and recognized him by a modest courtesy, thus preserving to the last the same dignified bearing that marked their first acquaintance.  In private and personal life Mr. Gilbert was very much beloved by his family and friends, and was most esteemed by those who knew him best.  He died in that part of Hebron which was called Gilead Society, at the advanced age of eighty-four years.  He left a large estate, which was distributed among four sons and three daughters.  One of his sons, George O., was a sheriff of Tolland county.

Payton Randolph Gilbert, a son of Col. Gilbert, was born in Hebron, Sept. 12, 1784, and was married Sept. 12, 1806, to Anna Porter.  Their children were:  Edwin Randolph, who died in Wallingford, Conn., where he was pastor of a Congregational Church for forty-two years;  Josiah Champion, a resident of Hebron, who was sent to the General Assembly in 1849 and 1853;  Melissa Ann, widow of John M. Hall, living in Hartford;  Abby Maria, who died at the age of eighteen years;  Charles Augustus, who died in Mobile, Ala.;  Ralph Porter;  Samuel E., who located at Evansville, Ind.; and Sarah T., who died at the age of twenty years.

Ralph Porter Gilbert was born in Hebron, Aug. 30, 1819, and was married Sept. 14, 1842, to Mary L. Hutchinson, a daughter of John Bissell Hutchinson.  Mrs. Mary L. Gilbert was born Sept. 23, 1819, and died Dec. 18, 1861.  Mr. Gilbert died May 16, 1891.  For thirty years he was superintendent of the Sunday-school at Gilead.  Mr. Gilbert was a member of the House in 1880, and a Senator in 1882 and 1883; in 1884 he was a delegate to the national Republican convention, and was for years an influential and leading citizen of the community.  Owning a large and fertile farm, he cultivated it thoroughly, and was known as a successful farmer.

Ralph Porter Gilbert and his wife were the parents of the following family:  Anna Lauretta, born May 11, 1844, the widow of Emerson W. Moore;  John Randolph, born June 13, 1849, who resides in Gilead, Conn.;  Mary Hutchinson, born Dec. 18, 1855, who died, unmarried, June 22, 1877.

EMERSON W. MOORE  was a son of William and Florilla Maria (Talcott) Moore, and had one brother and two sisters who grew up; Charles D., who is a resident of Westfield, Mass.;  Flora, who died young;  Nellie, wife of William F. Risley, of Manchester, Conn.  Mr. Moore was born at Rainbow, Conn., Aug. 9, 1844, where he received his early education, which was supplemented by study at Wilbraham Academy and at the Connecticut Literary Institute at Suffield, Conn.  His early years were marked by the development of unusual business ability, and by the possession of a personal character that commanded confidence of his neighbors.  Engaging in a mercantile career at Vernon, in 1868, when only twenty-four years old, he represented his town in the General Assembly, where he served on the committee on Finance.  Three years later he was appointed a clerk in the office of the comptroller.  In 1877 he rose to the position of chief clerk, and served in that capacity until his death, Dec. 24, 1897.  His first appointment was secured very largely through the instrumentality of Judge Cowell, of Hartford, but his own character and ability retained him in the office, and pushed him forward until he came into charge of the department.  His information on all matters relating to his work was of wide range, and gave his work vast value.

Mr. Moore was married June 5, 1873, to Ellen Frances, a daughter of Walter M. and Almera (Kennedy) McKee, by whom he had the following children:  Florence Almera, born May 25, 1875;  William Emerson, born Aug. 25, 1877, who died June 4, 1892;  Anne Maria, born Nov. 14, 1883.  Mrs. Moore, who was born May 3, 1843, died Dec. 4, 1883.  Mr. Moore was married Jan. 13, 1886, to Anna Lauretta Gilbert, who was born in Gilead Society, town of Hebron.  

Mr. Moore joined the Talcottville Congregational Church soon after its organization, and took an active part in its work, his fine character and lofty nature giving him much influence in the society.  At different times he served as assistant superintendent of the Sunday-school, worked on various church committees, and taught a class in the Sunday-school for many years.  He was a man of marked Christian character and delightful personal traits, much respected by all who knew him.  At his funeral many tokens of esteem and love were offered, among them being a large floral offering, representing the coat of arms of Connecticut, bearing the letters,  “From the State of Ct., 1871-1897.”  Another was a broken column of roses bearing the words,  “From the Departments of the State of Ct.”  One cross was from the employees of the comptroller.  The State Capitol was closed on the day of his funeral.  He was buried at Mt. Hope cemetery at Talcottville.   

Reproduced by:

Linda D. Pingel – great-great granddaughter of Cyrus White of Rockville, Ct.


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