Matthew Canfield or Camfield
Matthew Camfield was born at Harleston, Northants, England and baptized in Saint Andrews Church at that place on February 27, 1604. Matthew was the son of Gregory and Joan Camfield. Joan may have been a Merrill, we speculate on account of the first name of one of her other children, there remains no source other than that speculation at present. (JG #58, VBC)
He was a member of the Congregational Church as early as 1642.
He was a carpenter, builder and grazier-farmer. His original will is filled at Trenton New Jersey.
Camfield, Matthew(This name is uniformly spelt upon the record, Camfield or Campfield.) He was an early and original settler at Norwalk. He was soon made a magistrate and judge, and was not only a leading man there, but in the colony. As full proof of his standing in the colony, I need only mention that he was one of the 19 signers of the Petition to King Charles II. for the Charter of the Colony; and his name is mentioned in that invaluable grant to Connecticut in 1662. (It is signed Camfield.) He was in '62, appointed with Gold and Sherman, to hold courts at Fairfield. Deputy in '62. He was early a magistrate, assistant and judge.
RECORDS OF THE
COLONY and PLANTATION of
From 1638 to 1649.
Moved from New Haven to Norwalk in 1652. He had nine or more children; was a prominent man in the town until 1666, when he with a number of others from the coast towns removed to Newark, N. J.
Sometime prior to 1643 he married Sarah daughter of Richard and Alice (Gaylord) TREAT, then of the Hartford colony. The Frederick Canfield book cited below lists many of the activities and commentary about Matthew's life in New Haven.
The family moved to Norwalk, Connecticut in 1652. There lists a court record in which Matthew Camfield sold his home lot in New Haven in February. At the General Court for New Haven held May 10, 1652 a "townsman" replacement for Matthew Camfield was chosen.
"He removed to Norwalk in 1652 and remained there fourteen years during which period he was a man of great prominence in that town and in the Colony of Connecticut. His name appears many times in Vol. I of the town Proceedings, which are preserved as early as May 9, 1653." (from FAC pp.89)
In 1666 Matthew removed to Newark, New Jersey where he was one of the founders of that town. His home lot was located at about the present north-west corner of Washington and Market Streets. Apparent his departure from Norwalk is based upon some dissatisfaction with the union of the New Haven and Hartford colonies.
Matthew died in Newark sometime after March 19 of 1673 and before June 11 of that year. His will was signed on the former date and presented for probate (proved) on the latter. The will is on file today at Trenton, New Jersey and is quoted verbatim in FAC (pp 93-94). FAC also suggests that Matthew was probably buried in the Old Burying Ground on the westerly side of Broad Street. This burying place apparently no longer exists.
Matthew and Sarah Camfield had 9 known children:
Samuel bapt. Oct. 19, 1645
Sarah b. May 23, 1647
Ebenezer b. Dec. 1, 1649
Matthew b. May 9, 1650
Hannah b. June 21, 1651 at Norwalk
Rachel b. July 29, 1652
Jonathan b. 1658 Died without issue Nov. 26, 1688
The Will of Matthew Camfield as deciphered from the original from FRC:
" The last Will and Testament of mee Mathew Canffeild.
I being sik and wayk but in pfect understandinge. This my last wil and testament whereas I give my body to the dust and my soule to the Ld Jesus Christ.
Imp: My eldest son Samuel hath received his portion alredy at Norwauk and shal have nothinge here.
2 To Ebinezer my second son I give the second division of upland that pertend to Samuels lott. I give him four akeers of my medow land next Sarjant Wards to run thurah out the lott & three akeers of meddow in my second division on the lower side.
3. I give to my Daughter Mary 18 (lb ) that is in my son Samuels hands
4. I give to my Daughter Hannah 10 (lb) in Samuels hands.
5. I give to my son Mathew 4 akers of that end of the lott next Goodman Waters his hows I give to Ebinezer 3 akers of upland in Roberdses nek next Mr. Piersons land & 3 akers of my first division upon ye hill next the Cove and all the bogges in the great nek. so far as the land goes. Memorandum Mathew is to mentayn to cros fence betwixt the remaynder of the lott and his own I give to my son Mathew the remaynder of the upland and bogges in Robards quarter and 3 akers of upland on ye great nek next to my son Ebinezer & half the medow and upland at Wheelers poynt on the lower side next Mr. Piersons & two akers of my first dividsion of medow quite throughout by Ebinezer, 3 akers of medow in my second division of salt medow next Ebinezer as it was layd out.
6. I give to my Daughter Ruth the remaynder of the home lot wher of Mathew had 4 akers with the hows and the half of my second division upon the hill: and the other half to Mathew lying next the hyway.
7. I give to my Daughter Sarah my two oxen Colle and broad in part of her twentie punds to be made out of the estate.
8. I give my youngest son this hows and home lott with the remaynder of the medows and uplands undisposed of upon the deseas of my wife. If wif live til Janathan com to age shee shal lett him have half the Home lot and half of the other lands whether medows or uplands.
9. I mak my wife the executrix of my hole estate Myy wil is that if my wif e shal mary shee shal have the house and half hom lot & half the meddows and half the movable estate and the other half of the movable goods to be divided amongst the other children that bee here.
If she continew my widdow then my wil is the estate shall remayne intire and Jonathan shal live with her til he be of age Yet if she die my widdow Jonathan shal have the hole accomodation and the movable estate shal be wqually divided amongst the survivors Samuel being excepted.
My wife shal never sell any lands nor medow to pay any debts. I make choyse of Brother Deken Tomkins brother Henry Lion and my son Mathew for overseers.
Item: At the deseas of my wife I would have her leave ye great chest to Jonathan and the sealed chest to Mathew I add to yr portion.
witnesses John Brown Sen Mathew Camfeild