William Hunt

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ChartsAncestors of Jennie Luene Logan
William Hunt, son of William Hunt and Mary Woolman, was born in 1734.1 He died at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland, England, 9 September 1772, in his 39th year,2,3 and was buried at Friends Burying Ground, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Northumberland, England, 11 September 1772.2

William married Sarah Mills, daughter of John Mills and Sarah Beales, before 10 June 1753.4

His nephew, Amos Kersey described William:
He was of a reddish-fair complexion; his countenance serious, composed, and sold; of a middle-sized stature, and pretty big-bodied, yet very moderate in meat and drink; neither did he yield much to sleep, being diligent in business and fervent in spirit. . . .5

The burial register notes:
"William Hunt of New Garden in the Province of North Carolina North America departed this Life at James King's theglasshouses Near Newcastle the Ninth day of the Ninth month & was Interr'd in Friends Burial Ground in Newcastle the eleventh of the same month 1772 Aged 39 years. A very eminent Friend in the Ministry."

Newcastle was home to a prosperous glass making industry at the time, and "glasshouses" were the glassmaking factories there. It may be that one of these factories was designated a hospital of sorts for those sick with smallpox.3

After his death, a collection of tributes to certain quakers, published in England, included this memorial to him:

"William Hunt, of New Garden in the province of North Carolina, in America, was born in the provnce of Pennsylvania, and by accounts received, he was first reached by truth about the eighth year of his age, which continued to follow him from time to time, that when in company with his acquaintance, he has been often tendered and led to seek solitary places to vent his tears, although he then did not know what it was that so broke in upon his spirit.

"Being situated in a part at that early period of his life, where no religion prevailed, but the people lived rather sissolutely, he had no one to tell the distress and exercise of his mind to (for his mother dying when he was young, who he had been informed was a religious woman, and his father when he was about twelve, he was left quite alone) but after some time going to live with his sister, and those tender impressions continuing, the Lord in mercy shewed him, 'They were from the immediate operation of his own spirit, and that his growth in truth, and experience of its pure virtue, lay in his being faithful to the dictates thereof;' by which he was fitted for service, even in very early years, his mouth being opened in testimony before he was fifteen years of age; and through the heavenly influence of the spirit, he became an able minister, rightly dividing the word of truth, to the great comfort and edification of the church where his lot was cast.

“He was concerned to travel in truth’s service before his 20th year, and visited the provinces of Virginia and Maryland; and afterwards in the course of his Christian progress, all the provinces of America, and almost all the meetings therein. And although he had a large family, whose subsistence much depended on his industry and care; yet when he found the requireings of truth, and became fully satisfied thereof, he cheerfully gave up all into the care of that hand which drew him into service, relying thereon for the preservation of himself and all his, in every dispensation of Providence, and which was mercifully afforded to him.

“In the year 1771 he came to this nation on a religious visit, and travelled through most parts of the north of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and after the yearly meeting, 1772, he visited the general quarterly-meetings at Colchester, Woodbridge, and Norwich: soon after which, he proceeded through Lincolnshire for Hull, whence with his companion Thomas Thornbrugh, our friend Samuel Emlin, jun. of Philadelphia, and Morris Birkbeck, he embarked for Holland; and after visiting the few friends there, he embarked in a vessel bound to Scarborough, but by contrary winds landed at Shields the latter end of the eighth month, with a dedication of heart for further service, if required; but was soon after he landed taken ill of trhe small-pox. In the course of which illness, his mind was preserved perfectly calm, and his patience and fortitude were truly great, as was also his resignation to divine disposal, signifying to his companion, ‘That his coming there was providential, but that his sickness was nigh unto death, if not quire; for’ says he, ‘when I wait, I seem inclosed, I see no farther.’

“To a friend, who remarked, that whatever affliction we may be tried with, we may yet see cause of thankfulness, he replied, ‘Great cause indeed, I never saw it clearer; O the wisdom, the wisdom and goodness, the mercy and kindness has appeared to me wonderful! And the further and deeper we go, the more we wonder; I have admired, since I was cast on this bed, that all the world does not seek after the enjoyment of truth, it so far transcends all other things.’

“At another time, to some friends who came to see him, he said, ‘The Lord knows how I have loved you from our first acquaintance, and longed for your growth and establishment in the blessed truth, and I now feel the same renewed afresh;’ adding, ‘He much desired they might fill up their places Providence intended, and lay up treasure in heaven; for,’ says he, ‘What would a thousand worlds avail me now?’ He also expressed his satisfaction, he had not spent his time idly since he came to England, nor neglected one meeting he could well attend and that under so great a load of bodily affliction, ‘what a treasure a quiet mind was.’

“At another time, he said with great composure, ‘The Lord knows best; I am in his hand, let him do what he will;’ and leaning on Morris Birkbeck, he said, ‘Dear Morris, I have a request to make, which is, in case I am suddenly taken away, do thou write to my dear wife, and let her know all is well: write also to my children, to improve the hints I frequently gave for their conduct while with them and since.’

“At another time, a day or two before his death, he said to him, ‘This is a trying time, but my mind is above it all;’ and it was observable, that a sweet melody was in his heart when few words were expressed.

“A little before his death, he said triumphantly, ‘Friends, truth reigns over all’’ and soon after quietly departed this life, the 9th of the ninth month, 1772, and was interred in friends burial-ground at Newcastle-upon Tyne, the 11th of the same, aged 39 years, and a minister 24 years.”

His final words stand in stark contrast to those said in Burlington almost a half century earlier about his father's actions being, "...such that truth hath been Dishonored."6,7


Sarah Mills b. say 1734, d. 14 Jul 1778
  • Uriah Hunt8 b. 14 Oct 1754, d. 1 Aug 1781
  • Isaiah Hunt+9 b. 16 Oct 1756, d. bef. Feb 1822
  • Nathan Hunt8 b. 26 Oct 1758, d. 8 Aug 1853
  • John Hunt8 b. 30 Oct 1760
  • Eleazar Hunt8 b. 11 Dec 1762
  • Margaret Hunt8 b. 18 Jan 1765
  • Hannah Hunt8 b. 26 Jan 1767
  • William Hunt8 b. 11 Feb 1769
This person was last edited on21 Jul 2016


  1. [S1579] William Hunt, Nathan Hunt and et al., Memoirs of William and Nathan Hunt, Taken Chiefly From Their Journals and Letters (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Uriah Hunt & Son, 1858), 7, further cited as Hunt et al., Memoirs of William and Nathan Hunt.
  2. [S1579] Hunt et al., Memoirs of William and Nathan Hunt, 12.
  3. [S1581] Society of Friends--Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Monthly Meeting, Public Record Office, London, Births, marriages, and burials, 1660-1837, 40, further cited as Births, marriages, and burials.
  4. [S1156] William Wade Hinshaw and Thomas Worth Marshall, Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy (six vols., 1938; reprint, Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1991), 1:400, further cited as Hinshaw and Marshall, Quaker Genealogy.
  5. [S1579] Hunt et al., Memoirs of William and Nathan Hunt, 13.
  6. [S1601] John Tomkins, John Kendal, et al., Piety Promoted, in Brief Memorials, of the Virtuous Lives, Services, and Dying Sayings, of Some of the People Called Quakers, Three volumes, (London: James Phillips, 1789), 3:262-5, further cited as Tomkins, et al., Piety Promoted.
  7. [S1596] Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Record of the Proceedings of the Mens Monthly Meeting held near the Falls of Delaware in the County of Bucks in the Province of Pennsylvania, 397-8 Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah.
  8. [S1156] Hinshaw and Marshall, Quaker Genealogy, 1:503.
  9. [S1156] Hinshaw and Marshall, Quaker Genealogy, 1:502.