Information from Homepage of Dick Halsey.
Dick Halsey's Homepage.
There was a Halsey Genealogy which was published in 1895 which had the
English ancestors of Thomas Halsey. These ancestors were proven wrong by
Herbert F. Seversmith in the early 1950s. The correct ancestry for Thomas
Halsey has not yet been proven.
Notes on Thomas Halsey
Mostly from Colonial Families of Long Island, New York and Connecticut by
Herbert F. Seversmith
Thomas was, in 1637, a resident of Kempston, Bedfordshire. In the Ship-Money
Papers of 1637 - 1639 he was assessed for one pound, five shillings & nine
Among the documents in the custody of the Clerk of Courts at Salem, Mass.
is a copy of records showing the divisions of land of Lynn, Mass. in 1638.
Thomas Halsey received 100 acres. It is evident, therefore, that Thomas
came over sometime after April 1638 and before the end of that year. He was
a resident of Lynn during 1639 and most of 1640.
A number of the colonists of Lynn had resolved to leave and to settle in
another place and on 10 March 1639, Edward Howell with others contracted
for transport to the future Southampton, Long Island. Thomas was not, at
the beginning, one of the adventurers in this project; but upon acceptance
by the rest of the party and contribution of eighty pounds, he was included
as one of them. The final agreement to settle Southampton was dated at Lynn,
17 April 1640, and the colonists arrived 13 Dec. 1640. The settlers gave the
local indians 16 coats and 60 bushels of corn for the land.
On 5 March 1646 Thomas was censured for "hindering the quiet proceedings of
the court and causeing them to lose their tyme by his willful obstinacy.
And for the unjust chargeing of the Court for justefying the actions of Mr.
Howe, for which offence he is required forthwith to make publick
Acknowledgement, and to paye five shillings..." He refused to make
acknowledgement, and was forthwith fined forty shillings. The fine was
remitted by the General Court on 3 March 1647.
He was listed as a perfect freeman 8 March 1649; was Marshall for a rate
for Southampton 5 Oct. 1646; and was chosen townsman in Oct. 1650, Nov.
1652, Oct. 1657 and Oct. 1659. With other able-bodied men of the town he
was a member of the military company or "train band."
An action of the case was brought against him by William Rogers 20 Oct.
1650, which was postponed to 25 Oct. 1650; the case was to be tried at the
house of Richard Barrett. Rogers won damages of five pounds. This was purely
a civil case and Thomas lost no prestige from it in the eyes of his fellow
townsman, for on 5 Nov. 1652 he was chosen with others to act as a committee
to partition the meadows of the town. In 1653 he was member of a squadron
to take care of whales cast upon the beach.
On 30 May 1654 the town ordered Thomas Halsey and Henry Pierson to lay out
land granted to Thomas Vail in order to make up the latter's fifty pound
allotment; Vail was to satisfy them "for the paines." Thomas got into
difficulties with the Court again 3 June 1654, when he was fined five
shillings for his "contemptious cariage unto ye Court, at his departure."
The Rev. Robert Fordham was plaintiff in an action of trespass against
Thomas Halsey on 22 Dec. 1654; the jury included Mr. Odell, Thomas Sayre,
a distant cousin of his wife, John Howell, Edward Howell, William Rogers
and Christopher Foster, among others. The jury found for the plaintiff
"for the tresspass in taking up the horse illegally two shillings damage
with increase of Court charges And the Jury meddle not with determining
whose the horse is." Thomas appealed to Hartford and was bound in the sum
of forty pounds to prosecute there.
It appears from the records that Thomas Halsey was independent, impatient
of courts and somewhat plain-spoken in mind. The same motive which sent him
from England, doubtless, made him suspect the jurisprudence of his day.
Nevertheless, when his somewhat belligerent forwardness got him into
trouble with his fellow townsmen in general, he backtracked. Thus on 23 Oct.
1655 and after a disagreement with the town as to the condition of his
closes (neighbors) and where his cattle should be maintained, he apologized
and paid the townsmen for their troubles in returning his cattle to closure.
He exchanged lands with Mr. Josiah Stansborough on 25 Feb.. 1657; was one
of a committee which in May 1661 determined the town bounds between
Southampton and Easthampton; and in Sept. 1663 he was ordered, with four
others, to collect all moneys due to the town, and to give proper receipts
therefor. In the following Nov. he was placed on a committee to perfect the
title of the town of Southampton to its lands. He climaxed his civic duties
by serving as deputy to the General Court at Hartford, Conn. on 25 Apr.1664.
One of his last services was to become a patentee of the town under the
Gov. Andros patent on 1 Nov. 1667.
Thomas left a will dated 28 June 1677 and proved 6 March 1679.