John Edmonds’ Natal Family

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John Edmonds‘ parents were Samuel Edmonds and Lydia Edmonds, née Lydia Worth. Some facts about Edmonds’ natal family:

  • Samuel and Lydia were married in 1786.^
  • Samuel and Lydia had two sons named John. Writing in 1863, John Edmonds refers to his dead brothers John and Sam, and dead sister Lydia.^ Naming a subsequent son after a dead brother was a common practice in 19th-century New England. This brother John must have died before Mar. 13, 1799, when the John Edmonds making the reference was born. John Worth Edmonds had his mother’s family name (Worth) as his middle name. Among prominent families at this time and place, having the mother’s family name as a middle name was also conventional for the oldest (living) son.
  • At least three of Samuel and Lydia’s children were dead before 1852. As noted above, the first son named John died before 1799. Samuel Henry, one of John’s brothers, died on July 29, 1819 at age 17.^ Edmonds refers to his dead sister in an 1852 publication, so a sister must have died before 1852.^
  • At least four of John’s siblings, three sisters and a brother, were alive in 1851.^
  • Samuel and Lydia’s daughter Ruth was born on June 10, 1787.^ Ruth, most likely their first child, probably was named after Ruth Worth, Lydia’s sister and Samuel Edmonds’ recently deceased wife.
  • Samuel and Lydia probably had eight children. The entry for Francis William Edmonds in Dictionary of American Biography states that Francis William was their youngest child. Other sources state that Lydia and Samuel Edmonds’ seventh child, Francis Edmonds, was born on Nov. 22, 1806.^ ^ Lydia Worth was born in Sept. 1765.^ Thus Lydia was age 41 when she gave birth to Francis. It is unlikely that she had any subsequent children. Counting Francis’ older brother John, who died before 1799, and assuming a sister did not die about 1852, Samuel and Lydia had eight children. Sources that state that Samuel and Lydia had seven children probably are omitting the son John who died young.
  • After John’s father’s death in Hudson in 1826, his mother lived chiefly with John in Hudson until her death on November 20, 1841.^

From his birth in 1799 to age twenty, John Edmonds had living at least two younger brothers (Samuel Henry and Francis William), one older sister (Ruth), and two other sisters. Since Lydia and Samuel Edmonds had been married since 1786, and Lydia was 35 in 1799, the two other sisters probably were older sisters. As a middle child in a large family, John W. Edmonds had good opportunities to communicate with siblings.

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