Hawkins Genealogy Revisited

Hawkins Genealogy Revisited

Lynn E. Garn, Ph.D.
G. Christian Larsen

    In 1981 Generations published the Hawkins genealogy, which reported the descendants of one Eli William Wilmot Hawkins, a Loyalist who settled in Pennfield, Charlotte County, New Brunswick. 1 In this article we report additional information about this Loyalist, provide evidence for reassigning some of his descendants to different parents, and provide evidence for assigning additional children to him.

    Although he was called Eli William Wilmot Hawkins in the 1981 Generations article, that article indicated the name on his grave marker was simply William Hawkins. No evidence that is contemporary with this man has been uncovered in which he was referred to by the name Eli William Wilmot Hawkins. Evidence has been presented that he was actually William Wilmot Hawkins, son of Zadock Hawkins and wife Lydia Wilmot of Derby, Connecticut, and that he served for a short time in the American Army during the American Revolution before deserting and joining the Royal Fencible American (RFA) Regiment as a Loyalist.2 In his pension records, which we discuss later in this article, he referred to himself only as William Wilmot Hawkins and never used the name Eli.

    After the war, William Wilmot Hawkins' name appeared on the List of Men, Women and Children of the late Royal Fencible American Regiment in the District of Passamaquoddy, which was compiled on 2 July 1784 at LeTang [sic, actually L'Etang, which is now L'Etang Peninsula]. 3 This list names his wife, Hannah Hawkins, and children Zed, Eliz, and Phillip. All three of his children were claimed to be over ten years old, a claim undoubtedly made to increase the children's rations from half to two-thirds of an adult share.4 We know that Zadock was born about 1781 based on a petition for government land that was filed by the Loyalist and Zadock. 5 Census records and Zadock's tombstone also support a birth date in the 1781-1782 timeframe. Thus Zadock was no more than four years old at the time. Later we discuss the children Eliz and Phillip, who are not named in the Generations article.

    In the following discussions we place the number of the individual from the original Generations article after his name to avoid confusing people with the same or similar names. The 1981 article indicates that William Wilmot Hawkins (#1) had a son named William Wilmot Hawkins (#2-2). While it is true that William (#2-2) was a son of William Wilmot Hawkins (#1), we have not uncovered any evidence that William (#2-2) had or ever used the middle name Wilmot also. We believe this son should be called simply William Hawkins (#2-2).

    The 1981 Generations article listed a son, William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) born to William Hawkins (#2-2)) and wife Sarah Paul. (Note that we use the name Wilmot even though the 1981 article used Wilmont in several instances.) The article also listed a son Wilmot Hawkins (#3-21) born to Zadock Hawkins (#2-3) and wife Mary Paul. We now present evidence for reassigning both Wilmot Hawkins (#3-21) and William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr. (#3-4).

    The Loyalist William Wilmot Hawkins (#1) received a pension for his service to the Crown during the American Revolutionary War.6 Prior to his death he petitioned for and received payment of 10 lbs. each year. In his later years he had someone pick up his payment for him. Whenever William sent for his payment in this manner, the bearer who signed for receipt of that payment was Wilmot Hawkins, Jr. An example of one of these (N5b-34-1841) reads:

To Mr. Hatch
    Sir Pleas Send me my Provintial allowance By the Bearer and you will much oblige your Most Obt Servt
    Signed W. W. Hawkins Sr
    June the 26th 1841

On the border of the paper was the following:
    Received Payment 2 July 1841
    Signed Wilmot Hawkins, Jr.

    We note that the suffix Jr. in the 1800's did not necessarily imply that a person's father had the same name. The suffix was given to the second person with the same name that moved into or was born in a community. The suffix was even given when "Jr." was older or totally unrelated. So even though Wilmot, Jr., signed for the payment, there's no reason to search for a father named Wilmot Hawkins, Sr. As we shall show, this Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., who signed for the payment, was Wilmot Hawkins (#3-21) and used the suffix because William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr. (#3-4) was already going by the name Wilmot Hawkins.

    The 1981 Generations article indicated the Loyalist William Wilmot Hawkins was married to a woman named Hannah. Clear evidence has been uncovered showing he was married at least twice and that each of his unions produced offspring. After the Loyalist's death, his widow Jane Hawkins received a widow's pension. Recall that William's first wife Hannah probably died before 1802 according to the Generations article. William's pension file clearly indicates that the Loyalist, William Wilmot Hawkins, married Jane about 1814 in the Parish of St. George, Charlotte Co., NB and that Jane was born about 1799. The record does not reveal Jane's maiden name.

    The 1851 Canadian Census of Pennfield lists two Wilmot Hawkinses, one born around 1810 and another born around 1818. In the household of the Wilmot Hawkins who was born around 1818 and who was married to a woman named Mary, we also find a woman named Jane, age 53 (born about 1798), who is listed as the mother. The census indicates Mary was born in Scotland and Jane in New Brunswick. Initial interpretations of this census, which undoubtedly influenced the placement of the two Wilmot Hawkinses in the original Generations article, suggested that Jane was Mary's mother and therefore Wilmot's mother-in-law. However, it is extremely unlikely that Jane, born in New Brunswick, would have traveled to Scotland to give birth to Wilmot's wife Mary. Having discovered that the Loyalist was married a second time to a woman named Jane, who was born around 1799, we must take the census at its word and conclude that Jane was in fact Wilmot's mother, the second wife of William Wilmot Hawkins (#1).

    Although no other records have been found that place Wilmot Hawkins as a son of the Loyalist and his second wife, there is clear evidence that the Loyalist and his young wife had a daughter Damaris, who was born in January 1816.7 So the birth of a son in 1818 is credible. The Loyalist's daughter Damaris was undoubtedly named after his sister who was reported in the second reference of this paper and references therein.

    This Wilmot Hawkins who was born about 1818, who was the husband of Mary, and who was the son of Jane, was in fact the Wilmot Hawkins (#3-21) who was originally assigned to Zadock Hawkins (#2-3) and Mary Paul. He was the son of the Loyalist and his second wife and not a grandson as he was placed in the original article. With this relationship established, we also see that Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., who picked up the Loyalist's pension payment, was the Loyalist's son.

    We note here that the Eastport, Washington Co., Maine, vital records have the death record of Lydia (Hawkins) Camick (#4-100), who was the daughter of Wilmot (#3-21) and Mary Hawkins. Her death record indicates she died in Surry, Hancock Co., Maine on 7 October 1936 and that her mother's maiden name was McVicar, which gives a surname to the wife of Wilmot Hawkins (#3-21).

    No doubt Wilmot (#3-21) was named Wilmot Hawkins rather than William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., because there already was a William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) who, according to the Generations article, was the son of William Hawkins (#2-2) and wife Sarah Paul. Recall that the Generations article also indicated that William Hawkins (#2-2) and wife Sarah Paul had another son named William (#3-1). It is extremely rare for two children in the same family to have the same first name. The Last Will and Testament of William Hawkins (#2-2) lists all of the children attributed to him by the Generations article except for William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr. (#3-4). 8 This suggests that William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) was not a son of William Hawkins (#2-2).

    A descendant of William Hawkins' (#2-2) daughter Hannah Hawkins (#3-3) asserted that Hannah was born on 14 May 1810. 9 However, a descendant of William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) asserted that he was born on 10 June 1810, which is about four weeks after Hannah's birth.10 The proximity of these births is clear evidence the two children did not have the same mother and one of them does not belong in the family of William Hawkins (#2-2) and Sarah Paul.

    Records compiled by Margaret (Hawkins) O'Brien, a daughter of Arthur "Beecher" Hawkins (#4-107), clearly place William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) in the family of Zadock (#2-3) and Mary (Paul) Hawkins. Her records also call him both W. Wilmot Hawkins and William Wilmot Hawkins, II. And they clearly indicate that he was married twice, first to Sarah Young and then to Eleanor Paul.11

    Records compiled by Almeda (Nodding) Bates (#5-10), a granddaughter of William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) and his second wife Eleanor Paul, indicate that Alemda's grandfather William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) had the same siblings as those who were listed in the Generations article as children of Zadock Hawkins (#2-3) and Mary Paul. 12 When listing the family of Caleb Paul Hawkins (#3-24) and wife Margaret Hopkins, Almeda had clearly written, "my grandfather's brother." This indicates that William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) belongs in the family of Zadock Hawkins (#2-3) and Mary Paul, and not in the family of William Hawkins (#2-2) and wife Sarah Paul. Furthermore, William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr.'s birth in 1810 does not conflict with the births of any other children in Zadock and Mary's family.

    Of further interest to this discussion is a handwritten paper from the files of Almeda (Nodding) Bates, which reads:

    State of Maine
    Washington Co., Eastport Augt. 21 1849

    This is to certify that John T. Gib....and Euphemia Hawkins, Wm W Hawkins and Eleanor McDonald, we [sic - were?] duly joined in wedlock by me this day according to the Laws of this State
    Lucius Bradbury
    Justice of the Peace

    This indicates that both Euphemia (#3-20) and Wm. W. Hawkins (#3-4) were married in a double marriage ceremony, something that would more likely have occurred with siblings than with cousins. We also know that the incomplete surname of Euphemia Hawkins' husband was Gibson. We were not able to locate records of these marriages in the Eastport Vital Records, presumably because the Justice of the Peace didn't feel compelled to make official records of the marriages of foreigners, although we believe the record is authentic.

    William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) may have been misplaced because he sometimes went by his middle name. Recall that there were two Wilmot Hawkinses in the 1851 Census as cited earlier. We have already identified one of them. William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr. (#3-4) was the other. He was also called Wilmot in a record of his death (St. Andrews Bay Pilot, 26 June 1879). Thus the compiler of the Generations article may have known that a man named Wilmot Hawkins belonged in the family of Zadock Hawkins (#2-3) and placed the wrong Wilmot Hawkins there.

    We now return to the other children of the Loyalist, William Wilmot Hawkins (#1), and his wife Hannah. As we compare the names of William's children reported in the Hawkins genealogy published in 1981 with those on the Passamaquoddy list compiled at LeTang in 1784, we recognize that Eliza and Phillip are listed and Lydia and William, reported on the 1981 genealogy, are missing. There is no doubt that Zadock (#2-3) and William (#2-2) Hawkins were children of William Wilmot Hawkins (#1). And there is compelling evidence that Lydia (#2-1) was also. So why did Lydia and William not appear on the Passamaquoddy list?

    One might suggest that Lydia and William were absent from the list because they were born after 1784 when the list was compiled. However, 1851 census records of Pennfield suggest that Lydia (Hawkins) Rutherford (#2-1) was born around 1778. While census records sometimes have errors, the accepted dates of birth of Lydia's two oldest children support a birth date for Lydia around 1778 and certainly before 1784. If Lydia were born in 1784 or after, she would have been extremely young to give birth to two children before 1800. The birth year of William (#2-2) is more in question. However, since his first child was born in 1805, it also seems highly unlikely that he was born after 1784.

    Since it is highly likely that Lydia and William were born before the Passamaquoddy list was compiled, one must explain why they didn't appear on the list. First of all, we note that after an exhaustive search, we find no other reference to children named Eliz and Phillip in connection with William Wilmot Hawkins (#1). And we believe that he probably never had any children by those names.

    It seems likely that the compiler of the Passamaquoddy list was working from memory, knew that William had two sons and a daughter, and also knew that one of those sons was named Zed, a name not easily forgotten. The compiler probably didn't know or recall the names of William's two other children and inserted two names to insure that William's family received their fair share of rations. The likelihood that Eliz and Phillip were named in place of Lydia and William is made more credible when we recall that Zed, who without question was less than four years old, was claimed to be more than ten years old.

    The final list of William's (#1) family members and whether or not he had children by the names Eliz and Phillip is the subject of further research. However, we believe the names Zadock, Lydia and William from the original Generations article are correct and that Phillip and Eliz should not be added to William's (#1) family unless additional evidence is uncovered to confirm that children by these names were actually born to and associated with William (#1) and wife Hannah Hawkins.


    We have shown that the Loyalist, William Wilmot Hawkins, married a second time and had at least two children, Damaris and Wilmot, by his second wife. We have reported that the Loyalist's son Wilmot was originally misplaced as Wilmot Hawkins (#3-21) in the Hawkins Genealogy of 1981. We have also shown that William Wilmot Hawkins, Jr., (#3-4) actually belongs in the family of Zadock Hawkins (#2-3) and Mary Paul. Finally, we have hypothesized that Eliz and Phillip, who were named as William's children on the Passamaquoddy list, probably were names the compiler of the list assigned to Lydia and William to insure that William's (#1) family received their fair share of rations.


    We would like to thank Beverly (Bates) Wickson of Massachusetts for generously sharing copies of records of her grandmother, Almeda (Nodding) Bates. We also thank Katherine (Mingay) Prout of Ontario for sharing the records of Margaret (Hawkins) O'Brien. Finally, we thank Marian Elder of British Columbia for copies of some relevant records and helpful comments as we sorted through relationships among the Hawkinses.

The authors may be contacted at:

 Mr. Lynn E. Garn
 12210 Redwood Ct.
 Woodbridge, VA 22192
 Web Site: http://www.garnweb.com/hawkins/
 Mr. G. Christian Larsen
 309 Mealey Road
 Pennfield, New Brunswick
 E5H 1T5
 Website: https://sites.rootsweb.com/~nbpennfi/


1 Martha Ford Barto, New Brunswick Genealogy Magazine, "Generations", Vol. 9, 1981, pages 133 - 137. or New Brunswick Genealogical Society Newsletter, Issue #9, October 1981, pages 11 to 27.

2 The Family of Zadock and Lydia (Wilmot) Hawkins of Derby, Connecticut, by Lynn E. Garn, The American Genealogist, April, 2001, Vol. 76, pages 106-115.

3 "List of Men, Women and Children of the Late Royal Fencible American Regiment in the District of Passamaquoddy, [LeTang Muster of July 2, 1784]", Transcript of Loyalists Returns in the D. R. Jack Collection, New Brunswick Museum, St. John, New Brunswick.

4 For a description of rations for one group of Loyalists see Loyalists to Canada: the 1783 Settlement of Quakers and Others at Passamaquoddy by Theodore C. Holmes, Picton Press (1992), Library of Congress Call No. F1044.P3 H65, pages 219 and 220.

5 Land Petition of William Wilmot Hawkins and Zadok Hawkins, Petition 221, Charlotte Co., New Brunswick, 1802, Provincial Archives Microfilm F1042.

6 William W. Hawkins files, Records of Old Soldiers and their Widows, Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, Fredericton, New Brunswick. Found in the Government Records link at: http://archives.gnb.ca/Archives/EN/Default.aspx.

7 Christening record of Damaris Hawkins, All Saints Anglican Church, St. Andrews, Charlotte Co., New Brunswick, Canada, 13 September 1816, Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, Microfilm F1082.

8 Last Will and Testament of William Hawkins, dated 11 February 1835 and filed 17 November 1841, Pennfield, Charlotte Co., New Brunswick, Canada. Charlotte County Probate Papers 1835-1841, Family History Library Film 851144.

9 Private communication to G. Christian Larsen from Don Galer, Lakewood, Ohio, 15 February 2001, a descendant of Hannah (Hawkins) Varden.

10 Family records of Ann L. Graham, Miami, Florida, a descendant of William Wilmot Hawkins Jr. (copies in the possession of G. Christian Larsen).

11 Copies of Margaret (Hawkins) O'Brien records provided to G. Christian Larsen by Katherine (Mingay) Prout, a great granddaughter of James Hawkins (#3-22).

12 Copies of Almeda (Nodding) Bates' records provided to the authors by Beverly (Bates) Wickson, Plymouth, MA, granddaughter of Almeda (Nodding) Bates

SOURCE:  Generations (The Journal of the New Brunswick Genealogical Society) - Summer 2003 Issue (pages 38-41) - used with permission from the authors.

NOTE(S): For a related article, please see "Loyalists in the 6th Connecticut Regiment" by Lynn E. Garn (2003).

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