Author: Nora
•Friday, September 26, 2014
Born on the 27th of June in 1770[1] in Wales, Massachusetts, John Fitch Bishop lived for exactly 70 years and one month.  He died on the 27th of July in 1840[2]  in Crown Point, New York.

John was probably about 17 years of age when his parents left the Massachusetts town of South Brimfield (now Wales) in 1787.  This is based on land, court and tax records regarding John’s father William Bishop.  At any rate, they’re not in the 1790 South Brimfield census.

It’s one of my ‘unsolved mysteries’:  what happened to William and Catherine after this?  They were said to have moved to New York[3], but I haven’t been able to positively ID them yet.  However, John Fitch left more clues to help us follow his trail, the first being in 2 September 1800, when a John Bishop took the Freeman’s Oath in Clarendon, Rutland County, Vermont.

There are no Rutland County deeds wherein John was a grantee or grantor; but “John F. Bishop” witnessed three deeds in the town of Clarendon, two in 1802[4,5] and one in 1805[6].  In one of the 1802 deeds[4], Daniel Goff was the grantee; Daniel’s daughter Lucy was to become John Fitch Bishop’s wife, perhaps in that very year of 1802.  Some researchers in the family have cited that date; I’m hoping that someone reading this post may have a source for their marriage date and share that with us.

Deeds in the town of Crown Point, Essex County, New York, help us follow John’s trail to that town as of 1806.  For it’s here that John is found as a grantee, buying 100 acres in Lot 44 – across Lake Champlain from Vermont[7].  He’s age 36 now, and it’s in Crown Point where he and Lucy establish their family, parenting nine children:

Julius Bishop - birth and death dates unknown; Julius was listed among the early members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints who were in Nauvoo, Illinois as of 1845[8]
Emeline Bishop - born about 1808, died (perhaps in 1880 in Chicago, Illinois - needs verified)[9]   
3       Daniel Bishop - born about 1810, died before 1840
4       Jerome Bishop - born 28 May 1811, died 1849
5       Henry Harrison Bishop - born 12 June 1814, died 24 March 1888
6       DeWitt Clinton Bishop - born 2 March 1818, died 8 December 1901
7       Charlotte Bishop - born 19 March 1923, died 14 February 1895
8       Adelia Ann Bishop - born 5 November 1826, died 29 December 1913
9       Marion* Bishop - born 14 November 1829, died 1 May 1911
*Marion was alternately found recorded as Mary Ann, Marian and Mary An.

The 1810 census seems to be the first time John appears as the head of household.   He would have been 40 then, making him the male between the ages of 26 and 44.[10]

In 1811 fifty men in Crown Point combined their resources in order to begin a public lending library there.  John was one of those men.  Each charter member donated either $2.00 or one book.  I couldn’t help feeling more connected to John when I found out he apparently cared so much about reading.  I love libraries – they’re like candy stores for the mind.

As for John’s military service, an obituary for his son DeWitt Clinton Bishop stated that John had been present at the Battle of Lundy’s Lane (in Canada) during the War of 1812 and that he’d suffered a wound to his lungs during the battle.  I’ve been unable to find anything to back this up, but he did indeed serve in the New York militia from at least 1807 until 1814 and was promoted that year to First Major.[11]

By August 23, 1839, John and Lucy had sold the farm in Lot 44 and bought another tract, Lot 49 in Crown Point.[12]

This farm was their residence when John died one year later, on the 27th of July, 1840.  This is the date his widow Lucy gave when she petitioned the Surrogate's Court of Essex County, New York for the authority to sell the property.  See my next post for an image of this document.

Please see Reference Notes under the Pages heading on the side bar.
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On May 12, 2015 at 8:29 PM , Mama and Papa Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
On May 12, 2015 at 8:32 PM , Mama and Papa Jones said...


I am also looking for information about William and Catherine. I come through the Adelia Ann Bishop line.

There is a William Bishop listed in the 1790 Amenia, Dutchess, New York Census. I wonder if this could be our William? There is no wife's name listed.

I am excited about the information you have about John Fitch Bishop. It looks like you have done some incredible research. Thank you!

M Jones

On May 15, 2015 at 3:37 PM , Nora said...

Thank you so much for your comment. I sent you a reply via email (since that's how I learned that you'd commented). Yes, I have also noticed that there was a William Bishop in Dutchess County in 1790 (in Amenia) and also in 1800 (in North East Township). And that's where William's brother Peter ended up, as well as their father Ebenezer. Then there was another brother, Asa Bishop, who lived in Ulster County. There's a good amount of info on him and his descendants.

But William and Catherine are mysteries so far!