HARVEY KINGSBURY

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.  1 80

HARVEY KINGSBURY.  At the time of the death of this good man, May 22, 1874, the feeling was general that a life of such extended usefulness could ill be spared from the community in which he lived.  Mr. Kingsbury was born Dec. 17, 1794, in Andover, Conn., a son of Joseph and Ruth (Benton) Kingsbury, and a descendant in the fifth generation from Joseph Kingsbury, of Haverhill, Mass., and Norwich, Conn., through Nathaniel, Jabez and Joseph Kingsbury (2).

Joseph Kingsbury of Haverhill was born about 1656.  He was married April 2, 1679, to Love Ayers.  He was a bookkeeper to Capt. Simon Wainwright, a merchant of Haverhill in 1708, at the time when Capt. Wainwright was killed by the Indians, and his house burned.  Mr. Kingsbury, on June 14th, of that same year (1708), left Haverhill for Norwich, Conn., where he died in 1741, aged eighty-five years.  His children were:  Joseph, Nathaniel, Elizabeth, Mary, Elizabeth (2) and Susannah.  (John Ward Dean, of Boston, who wrote of the Kingsbury family in 1850, Vol. XIII, of the Register, gives some speculation as to Joseph Kingsbury’s relationship to Henry and Susannah Kingsbury, of Ipswich, Rowley and Haverhill.)

(II)          Nathaniel Kingsbury, born Aug. 23, 1684, accompanied his father to Norwich in 1708.  He married Hannah Dennison, daughter of John D. Dennison, of Ipswich, and settled in Windham, now Hampton, Conn., living there until 1731 or 1732.  Thence he removed to that part of Coventry which later became Andover.  He and his wife were the parents of fifteen children.

(III)       Jabez Kingsbury, born June 21, 1717, married Mary Phelps, and their children were:  Nathaniel, Ruth, Joseph, Jeremiah, Jabez, Mary, Amelia and Anne.

(IV)       Joseph Kingsbury (2), born Feb. 20, 1755, was married to Ruth Benton, and to them were born children as follows:  Sophia, Betsy, Mary, William, Joseph, Harvey and Royal.

Harvey Kingsbury was of a frail physique, and in early life was unable to pursue successfully the business of agriculture.  Consequently he removed to Farmington to acquire a knowledge of the trade of a jeweler.  However, he preferred the duties of an instructor to the routine of a tradesman’s life, and gave special attention to study with a view to take up teaching, reciting for a time to Rev. Mr. Woodruff, of Coventry.  He taught for ten successful winters and gave satisfaction to his employers.  Mr. Kingsbury, after his marriage, in 1824, removed to Coventry, and became an enterprising and successful farmer in that town.  His business ability was of a high order, as was early discovered by his fellow townsmen, who called him to serve at different times as one of their selectmen.  He was more than twenty years a member of the Ecclesiastical Society Committee, and of the school board for the same period.  He was also one of the building committee when the present church edifice was erected.  He was for many years a director of the Rockville Bank, and one if the incorporators of the Savings Bank of Rockville.  In the war of 1812 he was drafted into the military service of the government, and joined the army at New London, but was discharged after forty days of service, much impaired in health.  This he happily overcame, and for the remainder of his life enjoyed exceptional vigor and activity.

Mr. Kingsbury possessed decided religious character and firm principles.  He was a Puritan, indeed, in his adherence to integrity, careful observance of the Sabbath, and diligent attendance on the worship of God in the sanctuary and the weekly meetings.  Greatly interested in the Sabbath-school, and ever ready to contribute to its support, he came forward generously when help was needed for the church, or the many gospel institutions connected therewith.  He responded cheerfully to the various schemes of Christian benevolence and regarded this opportunity not only as a duty but a pleasure.

On April 7, 1824, Mr. Kingsbury was married to Polly, daughter of Roswell Wright, of Coventry.  Two daughters were born to them, Elizabeth Wright and Mary Jeffers, both of whom married the late Hon. Henry E.H. Gilbert, and both of whom are now deceased.

Reproduced by:

Linda D. Pingel

 

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