Fairbanks Family History as Told by Rufus Fairbanks

Among the materials I had sent to me by the Halifax National Archives is a document that seems to have been written in 1863 by Rufus Fairbanks, Esquire, an attorney in Halifax, Nova Scotia, very shortly before his death in 1864.  [I don’t know yet how he is connected to my family, but he seems to be a descendant of Rufus Fairbanks (1759-1842), my 5x great grandfather.  I found his estate notice published in the 12 Apr 1864 edition of the Halifax “Morning Chronicle”.]

It’s rather unique document, being a recounting of Fairbanks Family history as understood by the Fairbanks Family in the mid-1800’s.  It should be noted that there are errors and omissions here, a couple of which I may note, but mostly I just wanted to post the document as it exists:

Memoranda respecting the Fairbanks family communicated by the late Rufus Fairbanks Esq. of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Three brothers of the name, immigrated from Great Britain to new England at the early settlement of that country. One of them settled in Framingham [Massachusetts] one in Natick [Massachusetts] and the other in Sherborn 20 miles south of Boston and adjoining Natick. The latter, named Eleazer, had three sons: Eleazer, Joseph, and Ebenezer.

Eleazer married in Plainfield, Prudence Creary, her father immigrated from Ireland and acted as Justice of the Peace in Plainfield.

Joseph was a lieutenant in the New England Corps and served in the expedition which resulted in the capture of Louisburg. Subsequently he settled in Halifax, Nova Scotia when he acquired a longer property. He was twice married but died without issue in 1790. His second wife was Lydia, the daughter of Samuel and and Ann Blackden and sister of Col. Samuel Blackden of the American Revolutionary Service.

Ebenezer moved from Sherborn to western New Hampshire.

The descendents of Eleazer who subsequently died in Munson, Massachusetts were:

Eleazer, a clergymen of the Congregationalist church, educated at Providence College, settled in North Shrewsbury and about 1800 moved to Niagra [Palmyra, NY].

Able who resided in Cornish, Vermont.

Martha married to Darius Leavens of Killingsly.

Prudence, who was twice married: first husband Gilbert, second Billings.

Betsy married to a man of the name of Packard [Dorchard], they lived in Munson and Wilmington.

Sarah married to Jude Fay who resided in Munson.

Rufus, the youngest son, came to Nova Scotia in 1785 upon the invitation of his uncle Joseph above-named.  He was a graduate of Dartmouth College in New Hampshire and upon the death of his uncle came into possession of his estate. He married on the 17 November 1785, Ann, the daughter of Jonathan and Anne Prescott of Chester, Nova Scotia.

Rufus Fairbanks was born at Killingsly in Connecticut on the 20 October 1759 and died at Halifax on 7 July 1842 aged 83 years.  Ann [Prescott] Fairbanks was born in Halifax 12th of October 1766 and and died on the 28 September 1850 aged 85 years.

Their children were as follows:

Joseph Fairbanks born the 8th February 1787, drowned at the age of two years.

Joseph Prescott Fairbanks born 15th of October 1788 died in infancy.

Charles Rufus Fairbanks born 25th of March 1798, barrister, member of the House of Assembly, and subsequently master of the rolls (Chancery) and judge for the Court of Vice Admiralty, he died in 1841 leaving two sons and daughters.

John Eleazer, a merchant, now retired, a member of the Legislature Council of Nova Scotia, he has two daughters living.  A third, now deceased, was married to the Rev. William Duff of the Presbyterian Church.  He was born on the 27th June 1793.

Samuel Prescott, a barrister, for many years a member of the Legislative Assembly of Nova Scotia, sometime the treasurer, and at present commissioner for Brown Lands of the Province. He has two sons and three daughters living.  He was born on the 31 January 1795.

William Blackden Fairbanks, merchant, he has four sons and five daughters.  Was born on the 17 April 1796 and died 4 May 1873.

George Edward Fairbanks, a physician, he removed an early period of his life from Nova Scotia to the Brazils where he practiced his profession for many years.  He was born on the 18th July 1798 and died about two years ago [died at sea, 1859, on a trip to Rio] leaving several children.

Mary Ann, married to David Allison, merchant, a gentleman of high standing and respectability, deceased.  She was born 23rd March 1800 and has one daughter living.

Francis Elizabeth married to the Rev. John Scott, Minister of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland, she was born on 22 February 1803 is now deceased having left no children.

Joseph Fairbanks, merchant, born 19 August 1805 has three daughters surviving.  Died Saturday the 12th [1863].

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About cthomas1967

Seeking to bring my ancestors out of the shadows of history and into the light. I have always been interested in history, and at a few different times I tried to do a family tree, but wasn't able to do it with the technology that was available then. On a business trip I visited the World War I Museum in Kansas City, MO and it was a very impressive establishment. While I was there I remember thinking, "Didn't my great-grandfather father fight in World War I? And wasn't his brother killed alongside him in some famous battle? I wonder if I can find out where he died." That's what started it all. View all posts by cthomas1967

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