Captain Richard Sackett of New York

Captain Richard Sackett, brewer of New York City and yeoman of Dover, Dutchess County, New York, was born probably in the late 1670s.1,2 His parents have not been identified, although it has been established by DNA test results that he was almost certainly a descendant of Simon Sackett the colonist. He died in Wassaic, New York StateG, in 17462,3 and was buried at the Steel Works Burying Ground, halfway between Wassaic and South Amenia.3 He married in New York CityG on 11 May 1699, Margery L (___) (Crego) (Wislake) Slade.2,4,5,6
     Weygant in The Sacketts of America records that, in 1699, Richard was the proprietor of a malt house or brewery on the north side of Cherry Street in New York City. An article on Cherry Street on Wikipedia adds that Richard opened a beer garden and a bowling green there, which became known as "Sackett's Orchard".
     In 1703 Richard was living in New York CityG and was recorded in the census as Richard Sackett in the East Ward. Other members of his household were his wife, four children (two sons and two daughters), and four negro slaves (three male and one female). It is assumed that the children would have been Richard, John, Catherine, and Mary/Maria.7
     Richard made his will in Dover, Dutchess County, New York StateG, on 14 December 1744. Named as beneficiaries were his wife Margery, his sons Richard and John, his "son Josiah Crego" [see comments below], his daughter Catherine Margeson, and the heirs of his deceased daughter Mary Dean.
Richard's parents
Weygant, Sacketts of America, names Richard's parents as Jonathan Sackett and Hannah ___, of New Haven. Richard has not been found in New Haven records, nor has other evidence been found to link him to these parents. A descendant of Richard Sackett has completed a DNA test, with results matching those of descendants of Simon Sackett the colonist. A satisfactorily documented link between Richard and Jonathan would consequently confirm a supposed link between the New Haven line and the line of Simon the colonist. However, the probability that Richard's father was not Jonathan makes this an unsafe conclusion.
"Josiah Crego Sackett"
Weygant lists a Josiah Crego Sackett among the children of Capt. Richard Sackett. The identification of this man would appear to have been based on an abstract of Richard's will. This abstract, although not factually incorrect, was deficient in some essential details, leading to a wrong conclusion that Richard had a son Josiah Crego Sackett. Study of the full will and of research data given in Roy Crego's Selective History of the Crego Family indicate that Josiah (more usually Josias) Crego was Richard's stepson, being a son of Richard's wife Margery by an earlier marriage to a Stephen Crego.
Richard's Will
Significant details in the full will not dealt with in the abstract are:
1. The abstract includes the words, "I leave to my son Josiah Crego, and to the heirs of my daughter Mary Dean deceased, and to my daughter Catherine during her widowhood, and to my sons Richard and John the whole of my remaining estate ...". A literal reading of this would be that "Josiah" and "Crego" were given names on the basis that other beneficiaries – Catherine, Richard, and John – are also referred to by their given names. However, in the full will, it is seen that Richard and John are referred to consistently as Richard Sacket and John Sacket, and Catherine, although mentioned once as Catherine, is referred to later in the sentence as Catherine Margeson. In the context of all the other names being full names, including the surname, it becomes clear that "Crego" was Josiah's surname.
2. A further clue to the relative status of Josiah Crego and Richard and John Sackett is that Capt. Richard left his remaining estate, after specific bequests, to "my sons Richard Sacket and John Sacket". Josiah Crego was not included here as one of Capt. Richard's sons.
3. The most persuasive clue appears at the end of the will where Capt. Richard, in a disposition apparently concerning his slave Hagar, refers specifically to "my two sons" – "after my Decease and my Wifes Decease hagar shall have the liberty to Chuse which of my two sons she will live with". In the context of the rest of the will, "my two sons" can only have been Richard and John.
4. Josias Crego signed as a witness to the will. It would seem most unlikely that this Josias Crego and the Josiah Crego who was a beneficiary of the will were not the same man, and equally unlikely that Weygant would have "created" a Josiah Crego Sackett had he had sight of the full will.
Margery's Marriages
Weygant records Richard's marriage to Margery L Sleade by license issued in New York in 1699. Research data given by Roy Crego in his book shows that Margery was married three times before, the first marriage being to a Stephen Crego sometime before say 1683 when Josias (Josiah) Crego was born. Had Weygant had knowledge of Margery's earlier marriage to Crego, he would surely have concluded that the Josiah Crego of the will was Richard's stepson, not a natural son Josiah Crego Sackett.
Margery's marriages were:
1. Margery ___ to Stephen Crego, sometime before say 1683.8
2. Margery "Crege" to Edward Wislake 1692.9
3. Margery Wislake to Peter Slade 1694.10
4. Margery L "Sleade" to Richard Sackett 1699.4,11,12
Abstract of will of Richard Sackett of Dover, Dutchess County, New York.
Date: 14 Dec 1744.
Testator: Richard Sacket, yeoman of Dover, Dutchess County, New York.
Wife Margery, all household goods & other personalty, & use of homelot, house & orchard during her widowhood, reversion to son John.
Eldest son Richard, 200 acres of land over and above his equal share.
Wife Margery, 50 acres of land.
Son John, homelot, house & orchard after Margery's death, my books.
My "welbeloved son" Josiah Crego, one-fifth of residue.
Heirs of daughter Mary Dean dec'd, one-fifth of residue.
Daughter Catherine Margeson, one-fifth of residue, with reversion to her children on remarriage or decease.
Son Richard, one-fifth of residue.
Son John, one-fifth of residue.
Executors: wife Margery, sons Richard & John.
After wife's decease, Hagar to choose which of sons she will live with.
Witnesses: Henry Nase, William Hunt, Josias Crego.
Richard Sackett (c1678–1746), first settler in Amenia, Dutchess County, NY
(Src: Amenia Historical Society)

Children of Captain Richard Sackett of New York and Margery L (___) (Crego) (Wislake) Slade

  • Richard Sackett+ b. 1701, d. 1771
  • John Sackett MD+ b. c 1702, d. after 1760
  • Catherine Sackett b. before 1703
  • Mary Sackett b. before 1703, d. before Dec 1744

75. Capt. Richard Sackett, 16__–1746, of New Haven, New York City, and Dover, Dutchess County, N.Y., son of (18) Jonathan and Hannah ___ Sackett, appears to have been employed in early life, for considerable period, in the forests of New England to have there learned how tar was extracted from pine trees. In 1699 he was a resident of New York City and the proprietor of a malt house or brewery. This malt house was located on the north side of Cherry Street, which at that time was known as Sackett Street, having been named for said Richard Sackett.
     On May 11, 1699, a marriage license was issued in New York City authorizing the marriage of Richard Sackett and Margery L. Sleade. At about the same date Richard Sackett was commissioned Captain of the 7th Company of the New York City regiment commanded by Colonel William Peartree. This company was composed in the main of prominent young business men and Capt. Sackett commanded it for several years.
     On March 11, 1703, Capt. Sackett petitioned the Lord Cornbury Government for permission to purchase from the Indian proprietors a certain tract of land in Dutchess County, called Wassaic. The license petitioned for was duly granted, the purchase from the Indian proprietors was made, and a patent for same, covering 7,500 acres, was issued to Richard Sackett and Company (Richard Sackett, Josiah Crego, Joseph Sackett, William Huddleson and John Mitchell), bearing date Nov. 2, 1704.
     At the time of which we are writing Capt. Sackett was enjoying marked prominence and popularity in both government and social circles, and his name appears frequently in official records of both New York and Connecticut.
     In April, 1703, Lord Cornbury appointed him Chief Revenue Officer for the South Eastern Section of the Province of New York. In April, 1704, he filed a minute of expenses incurred in seizing the sloop Betsey of Oyster Bay, for trading contrary to law, and bringing her up to New York. This proceeding shows that he had jurisdiction over the harbor and seacoasts as well as over the city and surrounding country. On June 16, of the same year, he was granted license to dispose by lottery, of several lots and tracts of land in New York City and Dutchess County, N. Y.
     The date of birth of Mr. Sackett has not been ascertained. It is claimed by some of his descendants that at one period before his marriage he was a sea captain. It is also stated on supposedly reliable authority that "having perfected his title to the Wassaick tract, he, in connection with several wealthy residents of New York City, purchased the Indian titles to several other extensive tracts in same vicinity, and the colony line between New York and Connecticut not having at the time been established, he probably availed himself of his knowledge of astronomy, acquired in the study of navigation, and made experiments and observations, based upon the treaty of partition made in 1683, but which had never been carried out by actual survey, and persuaded himself that the boundary line when surveyed would run within about two miles of the Ouastonic River. And that in this belief he purchased of Metoxan, the Great Chief of all the Indian tribes in that region, 22,000 acres of land -- more than 7,000 acres of which the survey of the boundary line showed to be in Connecticut." The foregoing probably refers to the Little Nine Pardners tract for which a patent was issued on April 10, 1606 (hand written note: "1706?"), to Richard Sackett and associates, the larger section of which is to-day the most productive portion of Dutchess County, and contains some of the most valuable farms to be found in the State of New York.
     The records of Connecticut General Assembly, under date of May, 1705, contain the following minute: "Mr. Richard Sackett, of the Province of New York, petitions this Assembly for full liberty for himself and associates to get and transport all such timber of pine and spruce and whatever growing in this colony, that might be of use in furnishing his Majesty's navy, and that he might have a patent for the same. Referred to the next General Assembly to be holden at New Haven in October next."
     At said October session the above petition, having been modified by the insertion of certain limitations and conditions, was favorably considered, and a resolution ordering the issue of a patent accordingly was duly passed.
     In the Census of the City of New York, taken about 1708, Richard Sackett is shown to have resided in the East Ward, and to have a household consisting of himself, his wife, four children (two sons and two daughters), and four negro slaves (three male and one female).
     In 1711 Mr. Sackett settled his family permanently in Dutchess County, building his residence about one mile south of the present village of Wassiac. French, in his "Gazetteer of New York." says that Richard Sackett purchased several large tracts of land of the Indians in Dutchess County and in Sharon, Connecticut. P. H. Smith, in his "History of Dutchess County." says that "at the time Richard Sackett established his family in Amenia there was not another white family nearer than Paughkeepsie. Woodbury and New Milford." In other words within a radius of fifteen miles.
     In same year, 1711, Governor Hunter, somewhat in opposition to the Lords of Trade, who favored another person, appointed Mr. Sackett superintendent of the manufacture of naval stores in the Province of New York, and subsequently of New Jersey also. This important position he filled acceptably throughout the term of office of Governor Hunter, who mentions him favorably in no less than twelve of his official reports to the Lords of Trade.
     In the first one of above mentioned reports Governor Hunter says: "I have provided another here by the name of Sackett, who hath lived three years in the Easterne Countries among the manufacturers of tar, and gives me a very rational account of the method of preparing the trees; I have also wrote to Connecticut for two more, who, as I am informed, understand ye matter very well."
     Mr. Sackett was also one of the presiding officers of the "Court over Palatines," appointed by "His Excellency, Brigadier Hunter, Captain-General and Governor-in-Chief," to manage the affairs of the several Palatine villages within his jurisdiction. The extraordinary powers conferred on this court are shown in the warrant creating it, which is recorded on page 669, Vol. III, Documentary History of New York, and reads as follows:
To Robert Livingston, Richard Sackett, John Cast, Godfrey Wilson, Andrew Bagg and Herman Schumeman, Esqrs. and the officers commanding the detachment of soldiers at Manor Livingston for the time being:
By virtue of powers to me granted by her Majesty's Patent, and her particular instructions with relation to the Palatines within the Province of New York, who by her Majesty's orders and their own contract are obliged to follow the manufacture of naval stores within the said Province, I do appoint you or any three of you (of which number Robert Livingston or Richard Sackett is always to be one), to be a court for regulating and forwarding the said work, with full power to take cognisance of all misdemeanors, disobedience, or other wilful transgressions in the said people to confinement or corporal punishment, not extending to life or mutilation. You are also hereby impowered to nominate to each village or settlement of the said Palatines a fit person for the head of the said village or settlement to whom all your orders are to be directed, and who is to see them put in execution, and in case of tumult, disobedience of any other mutinous proceeding as have already fallen out, the officer commanding the detachment now at Manor Livingston is to assist you, if need be, toward the suppressing the same, preserving the public peace and securing the delinquents, in order to their being brought to Royal and condign punishment, for all which this is your sufficient warrant.
Given at Manor Livingston this present 12th June 1711.
R. Hunter
     In 1715, Richard Sackett was, on recommendation of Judge Leonard Lewis, made the first clerk of Dutchess County, which office he held until 1721.
     On Nov. 29, 1722, it is recorded that Richard Sackett petitioned the New York Assembly for "a warrant of survey, to run the north line of Madam Brett's patent, his land lying adjacent thereto (in Dutchess County)."
     In 1732 the General Assembly of Connecticut granted a charter to "The New London Society, United for Trade and Commerce," in which Richard Sackett is named as one of the incorporators.
     Among the acts passed by the New York Colonial Assembly at session of 1734-5, was one "For the partition and division of a certain tract of land in Dutchess County, granted to Rip Van Dam, Richard Sackett, and others." A full account of proceedings taken under this act, together with copies of official maps, showing the specific allotments in this thirty-five mile trace, may be found in the "History of Little Nine Partners," by Isaac Hunting, of Pine Plains, N.Y., issued from the press of Charles Walsh & Co., Amelia, N.Y., in 1897.
     Capt. Richard Sackett died at Wassaick in 1746, and is buried in a private plot on a small rise of ground on the original Sackett Homestead farm at that place. Van Alstine in his "Burying Grounds of Sharon & Vicinity," referring to this particular plot, says: "This is a small enclosure on the hillside above the steel works, on the old road, half way between South Amenia and Wassiack. Here was buried in 1746, Mr. Richard Sackett, the earliest settler of Anemia. The stone that marked the spot has long since disappeared. The whole place is shamefully neglected."
     The will of Capt. Sackett was probated April 28, 1746, and was recorded both at Albany and New York City. It reads as follows:
In the name of God Amen. Dec. 14, 1744. I Richard Sackett, of Dover in Dutchess, County, yoeman, being sick ... leave to my wife Margery all Household goods, and the use of my lot, house and Orchards, during her widowhood, and then to my son John Sackett. I leave to my oldest son Richard Sackett 200 acres of land above his equal share as oldest son. I leave to my wife 50 acres to be at her disposal. I leave to my son John after my wife's decease my house, homestead, orchards and meadows and all my books. I leave to my sone Josiah Crego, and to the heirs of my daughter Mary Dean deceased, and to my daughter Catherine during her widowhood, and to my sons Richard and John the whole of my remaining estate, each an equal part, and they are to pay equally in defending the title. I make my wife Margery and my sons Richard and John executors.
     The later years of the life of Capt. Sackett were attended with great annoyance occasioned by suits at law brought by persons claiming title to his estate, or the greater part of it, by virtue of grants or patents which it was claimed antedated those held by him.
267. Richard Sackett, b. in 1701, d. in 1772; m. Mary ___.
268. John Sackett.
269. Catherine Sackett, m. Thomas Walcot.
270. Maria Sackett; m. ___ Dean.
271. Josiah Crego Sackett, m. Miss Douglas.

 Notes & Citations

  1. Date of birth estimated on basis of his being 21 or over at marriage in 1699.
  2. Charles Weygant, The Sacketts of America, "75. Richard Sackett, d. in year 1746; m. Margery L. Sleade."
  3. "Sharon, Connecticut, Burying Grounds", inscriptions from burying grounds of Sharon, CT, Amenia, NY, and north east NY (Ancestry image), Burying Ground at the "Steel Works", "This is a small enclosure on the hillside above the "Steel Works," on the old road, half way between South Amenia and Wassaic. Here was buried in 1746, Mr. Richard Sackett, the earliest settler of Amenia. The stone that marked the spot has long since disappeared. The whole place is shamefully neglected."
  4. Roy Crego, A Selective History of the Crego Family (Published by the author, 1993), "Margery L "Sleade" married Richard Sackett by license dated 11 May 1699 (NY County Will Book 5:340)." Roy Crego e-mail to Sackett List 7 Nov 2003.
  5. New York Abstracts of Wills Vol 1 1665-1707 (New York Historical Society, 1892), 294.
  6. "New York City, Marriages, 1600s–1800s" (Ancestry transcript), "1699, New York, Richard Sackett & Marjory L Sleade."
  7. Sacketts of America, gives the date of the census as 1708. It is believed the date was 1703.
  8. Roy Crego, A Selective History of the Crego Family, "Margery (surname unknown) of New York City was married to Stephen Crego, who died in 1690 aboard the frigate Archangel (Admon Book, 1692; Log of the Archangel). They are presumed to be parents of Josias Crego." Roy Crego e-mail to Sackett List 7 Nov 2003.
  9. Roy Crego, A Selective History of the Crego Family, "Margery "Crege" married Edward Wislake by license dated 28 April 1692 (NY County Will Book 3-4:333)." Roy Crego e-mail to Sackett List 7 Nov 2003.
  10. Roy Crego, A Selective History of the Crego Family, "Margery Wislake married Peter Slade by license dated 26 December 1694 (NY County Will Book 5:92)." Roy Crego e-mail to Sackett List 7 Nov 2003.
  11. Sacketts of America, p55.
  12. New York Abstracts of Wills, p294. Thurmon King email to Sackett List 6 Nov 2003.
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Last Edited13 Sep 2023

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