This is a continuation of a series of articles on the history of the Pauch Farm in Delaware Township. To see the previous articles, click on the topic “Pauch Farm” on the right.
Richard Green was born about 1712 in Amwell Township. He was the only son of Samuel Green and Sarah Bull, and the third of four children. Around the time he reached adulthood, his mother had died and his father was exploring the unsettled lands in the north of New Jersey. By the late 1730s, Samuel Green was preparing to relocate to Sussex County (still part of Morris County), despite his high standing in Hunterdon County.
Before leaving Amwell township, Samuel Green married his third wife, Hannah (Annatie) Wright, daughter of John Wright and Orka (or Orcha). The identity of John Wright is a little problematic. He may have been the son of Richard and Constance Wright of Cooper’s Creek, Gloucester County. But it is more likely that he was the son of John Wright of Hackensack. Both versions agree that Hannah Wright’s father John died in Amwell township in 1732, and had purchased 100 acres from Samuel Green in 1726. According to the Hammond Map, this was located southwest of the Richard Bull-Richard Green property.1
Providing for the Green Children
The other item on Samuel Green’s agenda before leaving Amwell Township was to make arrangements for his four children, providing them all with large tracts of land. Daughters Sarah and Margaret and their husbands (Benjamin Severns and John Opdycke) each received about 450 acres at or near the village of Headquarters. Daughter Ann married Joshua Opdycke in July 1738; they were probably given land in Kingwood Township soon afterwards.
I have not found a conveyance from Samuel Green to son Richard Green, but based on mortgages made in 1737, it seems likely to have taken place about the time that Samuel Green left for Sussex County. In 1737, Richard Green mortgaged 400 acres bordering Samuel Green, Matthew Medcalf and land formerly Daniel Robbins.2 This property included the Pauch family farm. Unfortunately, the description given with the mortgage (the metes & bounds) is so poor that the courses do not meet up at all. I can only approximate its location.
Richard Green’s brothers-in-law, John Opdycke and Benjamin Severns, also mortgaged their properties in 1737, and Richard Green witnessed the documents. Neither of their farms bordered Richard Green. The same year, Richard’s father Samuel mortgaged a tract of 250 acres that did border Richard Green on the east.3 This may have been part of the 200 acres that Samuel Green mortgaged in 1733.4
The Medcalf Tract
The Medcalf tract of 437 acres was surveyed April 29, 1712 by Richard Bull on behalf of Dorothy Medcalf, widow of Mathew Medcalf of Gloucester County, and their children.5 On the southeast corner of this tract was a lot belonging to Daniel Robins. This is in addition to the 700 acres in Amwell Robins had resurveyed in 1725 by Samuel Green, deputy surveyor.6 That lay directly east of the Medcalf tract.
Plotting the Medcalf tract and matching it to the township tax map shows that the tract extended across Route 523 to include what might have been the location of the Pauch farmhouse. On the south of both the Medcalf and Robins lots was the Lotting Purchase Line and land of Samuel Green.7 Here is how it looks when the Medcalf tract is superimposed on the tax maps, with apologies for the sloppy printing:
Comparing the Hammond Map with the aerial photo from Google Earth is a little frustrating. The old Lotting Purchase line seems to have been completely obliterated from the landscape. The southeast corner of the Medcalf tract on the Hammond Map seems to include the location of the Pauch farmhouse, while the aerial suggests the house was south of the Medcalf tract. It is quite possible that a piece of the Medcalf property was conveyed to Samuel Green, but because Green was so casual about recording his deeds, we cannot know for sure. Whatever the case, the area where the current house is located did become part of the Green property.
Richard Bull was acquainted with the Medcalf family, which is why it is not surprising that he surveyed this lot for them adjacent to his own property. As the tax map shows, the survey did not take into account the route of today’s Sergeantsville Road (Rte 523). That road is a very old one, probably following an old Indian path, the way most of the first roads in Hunterdon County did. It was usually called the road from Howell’s Ferry to Flemington. In 1715, John Reading bought a tract of 147 acres on the west of Richard Bull’s 300 acres, and just south of the Medcalf tract.8 The Hammond map seems to show that the boundary between Bull and Reading did not match the route of 523 today. But roads do change; the old lot lines may reflect an older route for the road.
A part of the Medcalf tract was later sold by the Medcalf heirs to Edward Milner. Milner also mortgaged his property, but not until 1743, after selling off 100 acres to John Quick.9 The tract begins in a line bordering Samuel Green and the Lotting Purchase line, at a point well within Richard Bull’s 300 acres, and yet, made no mention of Richard Green. This may have simply been sloppiness on the part of the surveyor, relying on the text of an older survey.
Edward Milner sold his Wickecheoke land to John Opdycke (Richard Green’s brother-in-law) about 1750 and moved back to Bucks County where he had originated. John Opdycke had been living at Headquarters before he took over the Milner tract. The stone house attached to the property was built by him and is dated 1754. After his death in 1777, his Wickecheoke farm went to his son Samuel Opdycke who kept it until his own death in 1801. Four years later, this property would become part of the history of the Pauch farm.
Richard Green’s Family
Soon after 1737, Richard Green started a family with his wife Elizabeth.10 They had five children, all born in the 1740s: Sarah, Samuel, Mary, Elizabeth and Margaret. Exact dates are not known. Although we can’t be certain where the family was living when the children were born, some documents suggest that they were living on the Pauch farm.
Richard Green appears in 18th century records from time to time. In 1741, he was listed as an Amwell Freeholder, but this did not mean he was serving on the Board of Freeholders; he was a freeholder in the sense that he owned his own land. In 1748 and 1750, Richard Green was named a Surveyor of Roads for Amwell Township.11 In 1750, Richard Green was identified as bordering the properties of Valentine Ent, Edward Ferrell and Garret Vandolah. This puts him in the neighborhood of the Pauch farm and Cemetery Road.
In 1760 Green witnessed the will of George Fox who lived near Rosemont.12 That was also the year that Richard’s father Samuel Green Sr., living in Hardwick Township, wrote his will. He made provisions for the seven children he had with his third wife Hannah, and left only 5 shillings to each of the children of his second wife Sarah Bull. This was because he had already provided for them when he left Amwell Township in 1738.
In 1761, Richard Green witnessed the will of his brother-in-law Charles Wolverton Jr., and made the inventory of James Kitchen of Amwell with Jacob Swallow. In 1765, Richard Green signed a petition to the Governor of New Jersey from the inhabitants of Hunterdon Co. seeking a bounty on hemp due to a decline in prices caused by the Navigation Acts.13 Hemp was not recognized for its mind-altering properties back then; it was considered an excellent fiber for making rope. Presumably Greeen signed the petition because hemp was one of the crops that he was growing on his farm.
In 1770, Richard Green’s neighbor, Valentine Ent, died. Green made his inventory with brother-in-law John Opdycke. Green was also named Executor of the estate of his nephew Morris Woolverton with Morris’ brother John Wolverton. This Morris was the son of Charles Wolverton who died in 1761. The fact that Richard Green was so frequently asked to assist with the disposition of estates tells us that he was trusted by his extended family and by his neighbors.
Once the Revolution began, among other troubles, New Jersey had to raise cash to support its share of the struggle. It did so by making loans available to holders of real estate. Two of Richard Green’s neighbors (Evan Godown and John Severns) got mortgages under this program, and their surveys show the location of Green’s farm.14 John Severns’ farm bordered Richard Green on the northeast corner (Block 38, lot 22). Evan Godown bordered Green on the southeast.
The Waterhouse Family
Richard and Elizabeth Green’s only son Samuel, born about 1740, married Elizabeth Waterhouse about 1765. She was the daughter of Joshua Waterhouse and Elizabeth Ingham, formerly of Pennsylvania, but living in Kingwood Township by 1746. This family apparently became very close to Richard Green’s family. The three eldest Waterhouse children, Ambrose, Elizabeth and Henry, married children of Richard and Elizabeth Green, i.e., Margaret, Samuel, and Elizabeth, all of these weddings taking place about 1765.
Joshua Waterhouse, father of Samuel Green’s wife Elizabeth, wrote his will on September 29, 1772. He was living in Kingwood, and had to provide for the families of four sons and three daughters. Sons were given 100-acre plantations, but daughters only got cash. Elizabeth Waterhouse Green was given £20, less than her sister Mary who got £30. Mary had married Thomas Shearman. Alice Waterhouse, the third daughter, had died in 1771, so her father made provision for her son Jonathan Barcroft. Elizabeth Green’s mother Elizabeth Waterhouse lived until the age of 75, dying in 1797.
Sarah Green, Granddaughter of Richard and Elizabeth Green
Samuel Green and Elizabeth Waterhouse married about 1765. Their first child was Sarah Green, born on March 26, 1766. She was followed by Richard, who married Mary Wood in 1796, Margaret, who married John Hoagland, and Marcy who never married.
Sarah grew up near Rosemont on a farm her father had acquired probably from his father. In 1797 when Samuel Green wrote his will, he left his “home plantation” bordering Isaac and Lott Rittenhouse, Tunis Case, Jacob Housel, William Marsh and John Woolverton of 164 acres to his son Richard (c.1770-aft 1840). These men all lived near the village of Rosemont.
Following the Revolution, a young veteran named Charles Sergeant, who’s home was either in today’s village of Sergeantsville or just east of it, became acquainted with the Greens of Rosemont, and their daughter Sarah. They were married on June 21, 1788, when Sergeant was 28 years old and Sarah was 22.15 Charles and Sarah Sergeant will be discussed more fully in the next article in this series.
Richard Green’s Inventory
Richard Green died in 1794 at the age of 82. We do not have his exact death date, and he failed to write a will. On September 22-23, 1794 an Inventory was made of his possessions by John Lambert and Andrew Larason. The total of his goods and chattels was £1,217.13.5, a more than respectable estate for the time, considering that his slaves were not counted in the inventory. Slaves were usually the most valuable asset in an estate.
Perhaps because he did not write a will, Richard Green did make a deathbed declaration. He asked that his negroes, named Patrick and Flora, be freed when he died.16 The witnesses were John Lambert and Andrew Larason, the two men who appraised his estate for his inventory. The date of manumission was the same as the date of the inventory.
There was a third slave named Phoebe who was manumitted on October 15, 1798.17 Overseers were John Lequear and Gershom Lambert. It is a mystery to me why Phebe was not listed in the inventory.
Both manumissions included a list of the heirs of Richard Green because slaves were then the property of the estate. They were the widow, Elizabeth, “relict of R.G. dec’d”; Sarah Gano, relict of Wm. dec’d of Alexandria; John Holcombe and Mary his wife, of Solebury; Henry Waterhouse and Elizabeth his wife, of Kingwood; Samuel Green of Amwell; and Joshua Waterhouse, son and heir of Ambrose Waterhouse and Margaret his wife, dec’d of Kingwood. Richard Green’s widow Elizabeth Wolverton lived to the age of 91, dying on July 20, 1807.
The inventory included more than £852 due from bonds made by Gershom Lambert, Andrew Rose, Wm. McCullock (£133.1.1), Charles Sergant (£98.15.10), Robert Laning, Maurice Werts, Jacob Deeder, Henry Waterhouse (£100), and Wm. Gano dec’d. Also £3 owed by John ‘Hotpence’ according to the widow’s memory.
Richard Green had some very fine possessions, like a silver ‘stock’ buckle, a pair of silver buttons, a “pistol for trooper.” a walnut desk, table and candle stand, a Black walnut cupboard, two looking glasses (mirrors), a quarto bible (15 shillings) and other books (£1.2.6), an eight-day clock, chest of drawers with tea cups and bowls. Also “40 weight of Cheese,” a pleasure sleigh, and spoon molds. There were six rush bottom chairs and five splint bottom chairs, plus one armchair and six “common chairs.” That’s 18 chairs! He also owned a ten-plate stove, a new invention in 1760, but not in common use until the early 19th century.18
Outside the house there were a wagon house, barracks, and barn, and a cider mill and cider works. There was the usual assortment of farm equipment and crops (Indian corn, buckwheat, wheat, rye, oats, hay, flax, apples). His livestock consisted of cattle (worth £37, but not numbered), 25 sheep, 6 hogs, horses, mares and colts (£70, also not numbered).
It is evident from the Inventory that Richard Green lived in a large house, for those days. There were 4 adult size beds suitable for 8 adults, one of them being a “high post bed,” and 4 “under beds” suitable for an equal number of children (we would call them trundle beds). It appears that the adult beds were all located in separate rooms. Unlike most 18th century inventories, this one did mention particular rooms: a closet, the west room, the cellar, the large cellar, the kitchen, the out room, the north room over the common room, and the chamber. This suggests six rooms not counting the closets and cellars.
The “high post bed” is interesting, particularly because it was listed with items found in the parlor. This is very suggestive. In early England it was typical for people of wealth to display their best bed in the main room, and this was also done in early America. However, my preferred theory is that the 82-year-old Green and his 78-year-old wife Elizabeth were no longer able to climb the narrow winding stairs to the second floor.
Other Observations about the Rooms: Closets were not often mentioned in inventories, and Green had two of them. They were built-ins, while cupboards were either freestanding or built-ins. Once again, though, closets were not something you would find in a modest house. The “out room” is an interesting one, suggesting a lean-to addition on the side. Since it had a bed in it, I am guessing it might have been used by either a farm laborer who was living with the family or a domestic servant.19
So, the question is, was that house described in 1794 the same as the one standing today? The current house could be the same as the one described in 1794, but it is hard to date the house from its architectural details, which are somewhat contradictory. There are elements that are certainly late 18th century, but exactly when cannot be known. It seems more than likely that Richard and Elizabeth Green lived in an earlier house that is no longer standing, and that the house they lived in in 1794 was built late in Richard Green’s lifetime, to replace it. And the builder was most likely the husband of the Greens’ granddaughter. That would be Charles Sergeant, about whom I will have much to say in a future post.
On September 26, 1794, Administration of the estate of Richard Green of Amwell was granted to son-in-law Henry Waterhouse of Kingwood; fellowbondsman (security) was Andrew Larason of ‘said place’ (Amwell Township). Henry Waterhouse was the husband of Richard’s daughter, Elizabeth, and Andrew Larason was not only Richard Green’s neighbor, but husband of Lavinia Severns, daughter of Richard Green’s sister Sarah.
Probably by now all these relations of Samuel Green are getting confusing. A chart is needed, and will be produced in a future post.
Updates & Corrections:
2/14/14: I mistakenly identified the “common room” as the parlor. Marilyn Cummings informs me the common room was actually the kitchen. But the “high post bed” was located in the parlor or best room. I have added a footnote regarding the Lotting Purchase, with a link to another article where it is discussed.
2/21/14: At the HCHS I discovered my error with Sarah Green Sergeant’s birth date. I was off by ten years, and have made appropriate corrections.
2/20/16: See comments for questions about Richard’s wife Elizabeth. I have removed all reference to her being the daughter of Charles and Mary Wolverton.
- I have been contacted by Rev. Richard Wright, a direct descendant who has studied this family for many years, and who advocates the Hackensack connection. The John Wright who wrote his will in Amwell Township in 1732 named his wife Orka and his children Harmanus, John, Hannah, William, Elizabeth Katherine and Affea, which suggests a Dutch connection. Richard Wright found the marriage record of John Wright and Orka Bras at the Dutch Reformed Church of Hackensack on April 11, 1713. ↩
- Hunterdon County Loan Office (hereafter HCLO), N.J. Archives, 1737 No. 77. ↩
- HCLO 1737 D74. ↩
- HCLO 1733 A56. ↩
- West New Jersey Survey Book A p. 128, N.J. State Archives. ↩
- West Jersey Surveys, Book M1 p. 40. ↩
- The Lotting Purchase Line will turn up often in my articles because it passed directly through Delaware Township, and determined which tracts got surveyed first. It is clearly shown on the Hammond Index Map. I discuss it briefly here. ↩
- per Hammond Map F, citing Survey Book A, p. 159. ↩
- HCLO 1743 #170-171. ↩
- I have long thought that Elizabeth was the daughter of Charles Wolverton and Mary Chadwick, but there is no proof of that. She is not included in the extensive Wolverton genealogy compiled by David A. Macdonald & Nancy N. McAdams. If she were a Wolverton daughter, she would have only received movable goods from her father’s estate after he died in 1746. ↩
- Amwell Township Minute Book, vol. A, pp. 17 and 19, Hunterdon Co. Historical Society. Note: I checked the Minutes of the Court of Common Pleas but did not find anything pertaining to this Richard Green. There were many entries for Richard Green of Maidenhead or Trenton, but he was from a different family. ↩
- It is possible that George Fox was married to Mary Wolverton, daughter of Charles Sr. If Elizabeth was Mary’s sister, then Fox would have been her brother-in-law. However, the Wolverton Genealogy surmises that she was married to George Smith of Kingwood and later of Hopewell. In both cases (Fox and Smith) the wives were named Mary and were the right age to be daughters of Charles and Mary Wolverton. ↩
- This was a piece of information I found on Ancestry.com in their manuscript collection. ↩
- HCLO 1776, No. 11 and 16. John Severns was the son of Benjamin Severns, Green’s brother-in-law. ↩
- The Deats Genealogical Files at the Hunterdon County Historical Society contain papers for the Sergeant families with names and dates apparently taken from a family bible. But Mr. Deats did not give exact sources. Since the dates are so specific, I will rely on them until new information shows up. ↩
- Phyllis D’Autrechy, Some Records of Old Hunterdon, p. 148. ↩
- John Lequear, Traditions of Hunterdon, p. 157. D’Autrechy, Some Records of Hunterdon Co., p. 149. ↩
- I show an 1830s ten-plate stove in my article on Anchor Fox and Uriah Bonham. ↩
- Many thanks to Marilyn Cummings for giving me insights into the items in Green’s inventory. ↩