Jasper Crane

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Jasper Crane, whose ancestry is unknown (or not traced here), was born at England, about 1605.1 He died at Newark, Essex Co., New Jersey, before 28 October 1681, when his estate was inventoried.1,2

Jasper married Alice (…), whose ancestry is unknown (or not traced here), say 1634.1,3

Jasper Crane is first of record in New England when his name appears in Lechford's notebook: "Samuel Searle of Quinapeage Planter in behalf of Jasper Crane of the same Agent or Attorney for Mr. Roe Citizen of London Demiseth unto Henry Dawson and John Search of the Same one house and house lott and three acres of land lying in Boston wherein William Herricke now dwelleth from 29 Sept. next for five years four pounds ten shillings rent half yearly, to fence to the value four pounds ten shillings, to repaire 21-6-1640" 4,5

Quinapeage is an early name for New Haven. Other than the Lechford record, no other record is known of Samuel Searle,6 and no other connections to London or England are known for Jasper Crane. His career shows he was a leader wherever he lived, and was probably well educated.

He was one of the original settlers of New Haven, signing the first agreement at a general meeting of the free planters there. He took the oath of fidelity when the government was organized. He was a surveyor, as well as merchant, and with Mr. Myles laid out most of the New Haven town plot, located grants, established division lines, and settled disputed titles. He received a grant of 100 acres in the East Meadow in March, 1641. In 1642, he was one of the New Haven Company concerned with the settlement on the Delaware River. In 1643 his estate was valued at £480, with three persons in his family at the time: himself, his wife, and son John. In 1644 he was "freed from watching and training in his own person because of weakness, but had to find someone to take his place. About 1644-45 he received a grant of 16 acres of upland in East Haven where he built a house. He was a member of the General Court, and for a many years a magistrate. He had an interest in a bog-ore furnace at East Haven in 1651. He sold the East Haven property, 7 September 1652 and became one of the first planters at Branford, joining families from Wethersfield, Connecticut and Southampton, Long Island.7

At Branford, he and Mr. William Swayne were the first deputies to the General Court of Electors from Branford in May 1653, and he was reelected in the four succeeding years. He was chosen a magistrate for the New Haven colony in May, 1658 and held the office by appointment until 1663. He was also one of the magistrates called by the Governor at Hartford in 1665-1667.7

However, in general, the people of Branford were unhappy with the unification of the Connecticut and New Haven colonies principally over voting rights being extended to inhabitants who were not church members. They decided to move to Newark, New Jersey, and in October, after drafting a set of laws for their new government, Abraham Pierson and a portion of his congregation made their way from Branford to Newark. Jasper remained active in public affairs at Branford until 30 January 1666/7 when he headed the list of signers of the new covenant, disposed of his property at Branford, and moved to Newark.8

He was prominent in all transactions of the town, especially during its first 14 years. At the drawing of home lots, 6 February 1667, lot 49 fell to Jasper, lot 40 to his son Deliverance, and lot 62 to son John.8

At town meeting, January 1668, Jasper and Robert Treat were chosen magistrates for the year, and also deputies for the General Assembly. He and Treat would work together for the next several years, until Treat returned to Connecticut in 1671. For his part, until his death in 1681, Jasper would remain at Newark and play a prominent role in establishing the town:9
20 May 1668, one of a committee making setting the dividing line between Newark and Elizabeth town.
28 July 1669, he and Treat were chosen by the town to "to go to 'York' to advise with Col. Lovelace concerning our standing. Whether we are designed to be a part of the Duke's Colony or not, and about the neck, and liberty of purchasing lands up the river, that the Town would petition for."
January 1669/70 reelected magistrate "and Deputy to the General Assembly if there shall be any." He and Treat were also chosen to be moderators for the following year.
2 January 1670/1, again chosen magistrate and deputy, and annually selected as deputy for the next four years.
20 February 1670/1 the town voted to request that the governor confirm Jasper Crane and Robert Treat as magistrates. This was repeated the following year.
22 January 1671/2 it was voted that "every man should bring his half bushel to Henry Lyon & Joseph Waters and have it tried and sealed when made fit with Mr. Crane's, which for the present is the standard." Jasper was also one of a committee to see to the burning of the woods for a year.
13 May 1672, He and Lt. Swain were chosen to consult with other representatives of the country regarding matters of safety.
17 June 1672, he was again chosen magistrate, "President of the Quarterly Court to be held in Newark to begin September next," and also given "liberty to sell liquors in the town till the country order alter it."
At a town meeting, 1 July 1673, he was chosen to serve on a committee with Mr. Bond, Mr. Swain, Mr. Kitchell, and Mr. Lyon, to meet with messengers from other towns about sending a petition to the Lords Proprietors in England to address some grievances.
4 August, 1673, chosen along with Bond, Swain, and Sergeant John Ward to discuss with the generals about having a privileged county between the Passaic and Araritine rivers. 12 August, again chosen magistrate. 6 September, he was on a committee to try to secure the "Neck" to add to Newark. 16 September instructed by the town to again meet with the generals and if they can to "buy it." It would seem they were successful, for on 25 Oct, Crane, Mr. Molyns, and Mr. Hopkins were chosen to look after the confirmation of the purchase of the Neck and sue for further easement regarding payment. 17 November, Swain and Crane were chosen to continue the trade for the Neck. The next year, 29 June 1674, the town voted to have Crane, and Mr. Pierson, Jr., take the petition to the governor and Council at North Orange to "obtain confirmation of their bought and paid for lands." 10 August 1674, he was again chosen magistrate. About this time he dropped out of public office, though he remained an active citizen. When it was discovered that many of the settlers had moved onto lands contrary to the town agreement, Jasper stated at a town meeting, 19 Feb 1678/9, that he would lay down all lands so taken if others would and 10 March following, he was chosen, with Robert Dalglesh and Jasper Crane, Jr., to lay out Samuel Potter's lot again.

This last entry appears to close the public life of Jasper Crane.

The town made an agreement with Robert Treat and Sergeant Richard Harrison to build and maintain a corn mill on Mill Brook, 24 Aug 1670, and when Treat returned to Connecticut, Jasper Crane assumed Treat's portion of the contract.10

Although he had taken up his property much earlier, patents covering 168 acres were issued 25 Aug 1675, apparently for tax purposes . . . "yealding ½ penny lawful money of England or in such pay as the country dowth produce at merchants' price, for every one of the said acres, the first payment to begin the 25th of March was in the year 1670:"11
House lot 14 acres
17 acres on the Great Neck: First division 11 acres; second division, 6 acres
4 acres at the bottom of the Neck
20 acres for his second divisioin by Two Mile Brook
26 acres his third division by the head of Mile Brook
20 acres for his third division at the head of the branch of Second River
14 acres of meadow for his first division at Great Island
12 acres of meadow for his second division by thee Great Pond,
14 acres for proportion of bogs
5 acres of meadow near the Great Island
1 acre of meadow at Beef Point
4 acres of meadow near Wheeler's Point.

Jasper left a will dated 1678, and proved 15 Nov 1681 when letters of administration were granted to his son John and son-in-law Thomas Huntington. The will names wife Alice, children John, Azariah, Jasper, and Hannah Huntington, and granddaughter Hannah Huntington; John to have his "silver bole and cup."

The inventory totaled £200 real estate, £83 14s 6d personal estate, made by John Ward and Thomas Pierson, 28 Oct 1681. The total in New Jersey Archives 21:45 is £289 19s 6d.1,2


Alice (…)
  • John Crane+1 b. abt. 1635, d. bef. 21 Nov 1694
  • Hannah Crane1 b. 1639, d. 1684
  • Delivered Crane1 b. 12 Jul 1643
  • Mercy Crane+1 b. 1 Mar 1645, d. 26 Oct 1671
  • Micah Crane1 b. 3 Nov 1647
  • Deacon Azariah Crane1 b. 1649, d. 5 Nov 1730
  • Jasper Crane1 b. 2 Apr 1651
This person was last edited on28 Sep 2017


  1. [S41] Ellery Becknell Crane, Genealogy of the Crane Family, Vol II (Worcester, Mass: Press of Charles Hamilton, 1900), 295-301, further cited as Crane, Crane Family II.
  2. [S1998] William Nelson et al., editors, Calendar of New Jersey Wills, 13 vols. ([various publishers], 1901-1949), 1:115, 116 (NJ Archives 21:45, Essex Wills), further cited as Nelson et al., Calendar of New Jersey Wills.
  3. [S1872] Clarence Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700, 3 vols. (Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011), 392, further cited as Torrey, New England Marriages (2011).
  4. [S41] Crane, Crane Family II, 295.
  5. [S1920] Thomas Lechford, Note-Book Kept by Thomas Lechford, Esq., Lawyer, in Boston, Massachusetts Bay, From June 27, 1638 to July 29, 1641 (1885; reprint, Camden, Maine: Picton Press, 1988), 286, further cited as Lechford, Lechford's Notebook.
  6. [S2036] Robert Charles Anderson, The Great Migration Directory: Immigrants to New England, 1620–1640, A Concise Compendium (Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2015), 300, further cited as Anderson, Great Migration Directory.
  7. [S41] Crane, Crane Family II, 296.
  8. [S41] Crane, Crane Family II, 297.
  9. [S41] Crane, Crane Family II, 297-8.
  10. [S41] Crane, Crane Family II, 300.
  11. [S41] Crane, Crane Family II, 299.