WALTER SCOTT HEWITT

BIOGRAPHY

AS RECORDED IN:

COMMEMORATIVE BIOGRAPHICAL RECORD OF 
TOLLAND AND WINDHAM COUNTIES CONNECTICUT.

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF PROMINENT AND REPRESENTATIVE  CITIZENS AND OF MANY OF THE EARLY SETTLED FAMILIES
PUBLISHER: J.H.BEERS & CO., CHICAGO; 1903      P.  570

WALTER SCOTT HEWITT  is the leading merchant of Hebron, Tolland county, and one of the prominent and influential citizens of that town.  He traces his ancestry to Capt. Thomas Hewitt, who first appeared in Mystic River, Conn., in command of a coasting vessel, in 1656, and purchased the surplus products of the Stonington planters for the purpose of trade and barter among the West Indies.  While in Stonington he became acquainted with Hannah Palmer, a daughter of Walter and Rebecca (Short) Palmer, and they were married in 1659, by Thomas Miner.  To them were born two children, Thomas, Jr., born in 1660; and Benjamin, two years later.  During the fall of 1662, Capt. Hewitt left for the West Indies in a heavily loaded vessel, and with his departure from the coast of Connecticut he disappeared from the knowledge of the world.  No doubt his ship foundered at sea, and all on board were lost.  His widow received an offer of marriage in 1670 from Roger Sterry, of Preston, Conn., which she did not feel at liberty to accept on account of the uncertainty of the death of her husband, and petitioned the General Court for such action as might afford her relief.  She had not heard from him in eight years, and it was the belief of the community that the ship went down at sea.  The General Court, taking up the matter and reviewing the evidence, voted that the said Hannah Hewitt "is at liberty to marry, if she shall see cause."  Mr. Sterry renewed his offer of marriage, and they were married Aug. 25, 1670.  They became the parents of two children, Samuel, born in 1671; and Hannah, born the following year.  Mr. Sterry died in 1680, and a year later his widow became the wife of John Fish.  She was his third wife, and he her third husband.  Previous to this marriage they entered into a matrimonial jointure, which appears at large in the Stonington land records.

Benjamin Hewitt, son of Capt. Thomas, was married Sept. 24, 1683, to Mary Fanning, a daughter of Edmund and Ellen Fanning, of Stonington.  To this union were born:  Benjamin, Israel and Tabitha, who were baptized July 24, 1692;  Mary, Aug. 12, 1694, Joseph, in 1696;  Elkanah, in 1699;  Hannah, in 1701;  Henry, in 1704;  Content, in 1708;  and Thankful, in 1711.

Major Israel Hewitt, of the above family, was married March 8, 1714, to Anna Breed, a daughter of John and Mercy (Palmer) Breed, of Stonington.  To this marriage were born the following children:  Annie, born Aug. 10, 1716;  Zerviah, born May 3, 1719;  Israel, born July 12, 1723;  Rufus, born July 9, 1726;  Charles, born Aug. 16, 1730; and Anna, born Nov. 8, 1734.

Charles Hewitt, son of Maj. Israel, was married Oct. 28, 1756, to Hannah, daughter of Joseph and Anna (Wheeler) Stanton, by whom he had the following family:  Charles, born Aug. 16, 1757;  Hannah, born Dec. 22, 1758;  Stanton, born Oct. 8, 1760;  Isaac, born Jan. 28, 1762;  Eli, born July 31, 1764;  Perez, born April 29, 1770;  Palmer, born Jan. 14, 1774;  Anna, born Aug. 27, 1777; and Polly, born Dec. 1, 1781.

Palmer Hewitt, son of Charles, was the grandfather of Walter Scott Hewitt, and was married Feb. 23, 1800, to Eunice Williams, daughter of George and Nancy (Hewitt) Williams.  She outlived her husband, and died in New London at the home of one of her children.  Palmer Hewitt was a farmer, and lived near the town of Preston, Conn., and there the following children were born to him and his wife:  Elisha, born Dec. 28, 1800, married and was engaged in the trucking business in New London, where he died;  Eliza W., born March 11, 1803, married Alfred Gallup, a farmer, lived in Salem, Conn., but died in New London at an advanced age;  Emeline S., born July 24, 1806, married Josiah F. Keeney, a carpenter, and both died in New London;  Eunice, married Edward Ashby, a sea-faring man, who died in New London; and Avery P., born July 14, 1814, was the father of Walter Scott Hewitt.

Avery P. Hewitt was reared to farm work, and when young learned the carpenter trade in New London, where he worked at that trade for many years.  In his later life he was engaged in trucking and teaming until 1860, in which year he embarked in a mercantile enterprise on the corner of Main and Williams street in New London, in which he continued as long as he lived.  For several years he suffered from poor health prior to his death, June 29, 1877.  His remains were buried in the Cedar Grove Cemetery at New London.  Mr. Hewitt was a Republican, and he belonged to the Baptist Church in New London.  On April 29, 1838, Avery P. Hewitt was married to Harriet Miner, a native of Salem, Conn., and a daughter of Christopher Miner, a farmer of that town.  Mrs. Hewitt died Dec. 9, 1863, the mother of two children:  Walter Scott; and Edwina Gertrude, born April 8, 1848, died Sept. 18, 1869.

Walter Scott Hewitt was born Sept. 21, 1843, on Amity street, New London, Conn., and received his education in the public schools and Bartlett High School in that city.  When he was sixteen he left school to begin work in his father's store, and a few years later he became a partner in the firm of A.P. Hewitt & Son.  In his last years the health of his father was poor, and the management of the store fell on the shoulders of our subject.  About a year after the death of the father the store was sold out, and Mr. Hewitt moved to Hebron for a brief stay, when he went back to New London, to buy back the old store.  There he successfully conducted business until 1882, when he again disposed of the store, to return to Hebron, and buy his present property, the Jonathan Page homestead.  This property he remodeled, making the front a store room in which, with the opening of the year 1883, he established a store, which is now the leading interest of the kind in the town, doing a general mercantile trade, and holding a high reputation both for goods and treatment of its patrons.

In November, 1867, Mr. Hewitt was married, in Hebron, to Emily DeL. Northam, who was born March 24, 1850, a native of Hebron, and a daughter of John K. and Harriet G. (Briggs) Northam.  To this union has come one child:  John N., born May 16, 1869, was married Jan. 28, 1890, to Bertha M. Chapin, a daughter of Rev. George E. and Susan A. (Robinson) Chapin, the former a clergyman of the Congregational Church, and to this marriage have come Sidney Northam (born May 15, 1892) and Walter Chapin (born March 16, 1895).  John N. Hewitt assists his father in the store.

Mr. Hewitt is a Republican, and was a representative from Hebron to the State Legislature in 1889, where he served on the committee on Railroads.  Since 1889 he has held the position of town treasurer.  Mr. Hewitt was a member of Lyon Lodge, F.& A.M., of Columbia, before that lodge went out of existence.  With his family he belongs to the Hebron Congregational Church, in which he is an active worker.

Reproduced by:

Linda D. Pingel

 

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