Richard Seymour

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Richard Seymour, son of Robert Seymour and Elizabeth Waller, was born probably shortly before his baptism at Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire, England, 27 January 1604/5.1 He died at Norwalk, Connecticut, 1655.2

Richard married Mercy Ruscoe, daughter of Roger Ruscoe and Sarah (…), at Sawbridgeworth, 18 April 1631.2,3,4

Richard was an emigrant to New England. The records of his marriage and baptisms of three of his children, and the burial of one of these, appear in the parish registers of Sawbridgeworth; but after 1637, no trace of him is to be found there or in any of the neighboring parishes. His father was buried 23 Aug. 1637; and as the spring was the usual time for emigration to New England, it may be concluded that he soon settled the affairs of his father's estate and in the spring of 1638 left England for New England, where he appears in 1639 as a proprietor and inhabitant of Hartford Conn.

It seems probable that the emigration of Richard Seamer to New England was due to the influence of Rev. Thomas Hooker. This zealous Puritan minister and protochampion of American democracy was silenced in 1630 for nonconformity and driven into exile in Holland. During the years in England he secured a following throught the county of Essex, and his influence also doubtless extended into the neighboring county of Herts, as Sawbridgeworth, the parish in that county, is less than 15 miles away. Hooker and some of his adherents came to New England in 1633, and others soon followed; at first they settled in Newtowne (now Cambridge), Mass., but in 1635 they began to remove to Connecticut, where they founded the town of Hartford. Of the one hundred and thirty six proprietors of Hartford listed in 1640, at least half were emigrants from the county of Essex, England; so that when Richard Seamer arrived in New england about 1638-9 and settled at Hartford, he was in a community where he must have found many former acquaintances from Old England besides the family of William Ruscoe, who were his wife's relatives.

The first mention of him in Hartford is in Feb 1639/40, when he is found as a grantee from William Ruscoe, who was evidently a kinsman of Richard Seamer's wife. He was not an original proprietor of this town but received land, commonage, wood and pasture "by courtesy of the town" and is seen to have been both grantor to and grantee from William Ruscoe. Richard is shown to have had eight or more pieces of land there and his house is said to have been built without a lean to in which case, according to prevailing custom, the "out room," or large hall, would have been used as a kitchen and dining room, and the inner room as "chamber," whereas if a lean to had existed it would have contained the commissary and culinary department. His home lot was on the east side of the road to the Cow Pasture or North Main Street.

On February 8, 1646, he was appointed surveyor of chimneys for the coming year, on June 19, 1650, he was a signer of the "Ludlow Agreement" relative to the projected settlement of Norwalk and in the Indian deed of 1651 he was named as one of the grantees of that town.

In 1651, Richard Seamer and Nathaniel and John Ruscoe of Hartford (sons of William Ruscoe) were among the fourteen original patentees of Norwald, Conn., at least seven of whom were of County Essex origin; and Richard Seamer and John ruscoe soon removed from Hartford and settled at Norwald, their homesteads facing each other on opposite sides of the same street. In 1655 Richard was chosen one of the townsmen (selectmen) of Norwalk, but he died about September of that year, leaving a will of which his wife's kinsman, John Ruscoe, was one of the witnesses.5,3,2


Mercy Ruscoe b. abt. 1610
  • Thomas Seymour+2 b. 15 Jul 1632, d. 1712
  • Mary Seymour2 b. 9 Jan 1634/35, d. bef. 3 Apr 1635
  • Mercy Seymour2 b. 8 Jul 1636
  • John Seymour2 b. abt. 1639, d. 1713
  • Zachariah Seymour2 b. abt. 1642, d. Aug 1702
  • Captain Richard Seymour6 b. abt. 1645, d. 1710
This person was last edited on28 Apr 2016


  1. [S719] Brainerd T. Peck, "Additional Notes on S. Allyn Peck's Article," Connecticut Nutmegger 22 (Jun 1989): 25, at 24-25, further cited as Peck, "Additional Notes on S. Allyn Peck's Article."
  2. [S1013] Mary Walton Ferris, Dawes-Gates Ancestral Lines: A Memorial Volume Containing the American Ancestry of Mary Beman (Gates) Dawes: Volume II: Gates and Allied Families (n. p., 1931), 2:727-730, further cited as Ferris, Dawes-Gates II.
  3. [S5] Donald Lines Jacobus, History and Genealogy of the Families of Old Fairfield (two vols., New Haven, Connecticut: Tuttle, Morehouse & Taylor, 1930-1932), 536, further cited as Jacobus, Families of Old Fairfield.
  4. [S1872] Clarence Almon Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700, 3 vols. (Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2011), 1353, further cited as Torrey, New England Marriages (2011).
  5. [S17] George D. Seymour and Donald Lines Jacobus, A History of the Seymour Family: Descendants of Richard Seymour of Hartford, Connecticut for Six Generations; With Extensive Amplification of the Lines Deriving From His Son John Seymour of Hartford; Based Primarily on the Manuscript Collections of Mary Kingsbury Talcott and of Seymour Morris, Which the author Has Augmented With an Introduction, Various Memorabilia and Appendices, and a Picture Gallery of Seymour Family Portraits, House, Seals, Chests and Family Memorials (New Haven, Connecticut: p.p., 1939), 109-112, further cited as Seymour and Jacobus, Seymour Family.
  6. [S730] George D. Seymour and J. Gardner Bartlett, "The English Home and Ancestry of Richard Seamer or Semer of Hartford, Conn," The New England Historical and Genealogical Register 71 (Apr 1917): 105-115, further cited as Seymour and Bartlett, "English Ancestry of Richard Seamer."