The Civil War in North Carolina

Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians

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b. February 10, 1697; Humphrey, b. July 4, 1699; Nathan, b. January 30, 1702; Lucy, b. April 17, 1704; Waitstill, b. March 27, 1708, (had two wives;) Grace, b. June 2, 1712. When that portion of New London east of the Thames was set off as the separate town of Groton, in 1705, Samuel Avery, the father, was chosen the first moderator, and became the first selectman, which responsible position he held for twenty years--nearly up to the time of his death.

        On the 5th of February, 1724, Humphrey Avery, (the sixth child of Samuel,) b. July 4, 1699, married Jerusha Morgan, daughter of William and Margaret (Avery) Morgan, and had twelve children, to wit: Humphrey, b. March 10, 1725; William, b. September 13, 1726; Solomon, b. July 17, 1728, who died August, 1728; Solomon, b. June 17, 1729; Samuel, b. October 5, 1731; James, b. August 13, 1733; Jerusha, b. June 7, 1735; Paulina, b. April 3, 1737; Christopher, b. May 3, 1739; Waitstill, b. May 10, 1741; Isaac, b. October 27, 1743; Nathan, b. November 20, 1746.

        It was this Waitstill, the tenth child of Humphrey, who, after graduating at Princeton, (Nassau Hall) N. J., in 1766, studied law in Maryland, and moved to North Carolina in 1769, when he entered college at the age of twenty-one, he matriculated as Waightstill, thus changing the spelling of the old Winthrop name. His eldest brother, Humphrey, moved from Groton, where his family and ancestors had lived so many years, to Hempstead, Long Island, where he raised a large family. His brother, Waitstill, sixteen years younger than himself, as well as his youngest brother, Isaac, lived with him in their youth, and were both prepared for college at the select school of the Rev. Samuel Seabury there.

        Deacon John Seabury, of Groton, who had married Elizabeth Alden, in 1697, granddaughter of John Alden, of the Mayflower, settled in Groton, 1704, and had a son, Samuel, b. July 8, 1706. The deacon was a cotemporary of Samuel Avery, b. 1664, who was the grandfather of Waightstill, of North Carolina. Alike prominent in Church and State affairs, Avery, the town's first selectman, and Seabury, the first deacon of the church, they were neighbors, friends, and their families were intimate.

        Samuel Seabury, b. July 8, 1706, was licensed and preached as a Congregational minister in 1726, at the new church in North Groton. He declared himself a convert to Episcopacy in 1730, and next year went to London and was ordained by the Bishop of London. Returned in 1732, and was rector of the Episcopal church in New London for eleven years. Moved to Hempstead, Long Island, in 1743, where he kept a high school as well as preached until 1764, the year of his death. He it was, undoubtedly, who prepared Waitstill Avery for college, which he entered in1762.

        His son, Samuel, born at Groton 1729, went to England in 1784, where he was consecrated the first Bishop of the Episcopal church in America. On his return he took charge of the church at New London, where he died in 1796. My opinion and belief is that on this trip to England, he was accompanied by his father's pupil, Isaac, youngest brother of Waightstill Avery, who became a rector of that church in Virginia, and who is said to have been ordained in England. He was 21 years old at the time of his old tutor's death, by whom, no doubt, he was educated for the Episcopal ministry, and about 40 when ordained in England.

        There is a family tradition in North Carolina that Waightstill graduated at Yale college before going to Princeton, and that he was a tutor there; but his name nowhere appears in the Yale catalogues, and all the dates and circumstances seem to show its incorrectness. If he had graduated at Yale, the fact would be stated in the Princeton, as well as
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