Thomas Miner

My Paternal American Ancestor, Thomas MINER (1608 –  1690) was a founder of Charlestown and Hingham Mass and  New London and Stonington, Connecticut, and the author of one of the few diaries to survive 17th Century New England. The Diary of Thomas Minor is a lasting memorial. Although the entries are terse and never give details, they do give us a glimpse into his daily life and community activities. He  is Alex’s 10th Great Grandfather, one of 2,048 grandfathers in this generation in the Miner line.

Thomas Miner – Monument Inscription: Leut. Thomas Minor born in Chew Magna Somerset County England, April 23, 1608. He was first by the name of Minor to migrate to this Country coming on the ship Arabella which reached Salem harbor June 14, 1630. He married Grace, daughter of Walter Palmer in Charlestown April 28, 1634. He took up his permanent abode at Quiambaug  in 1653 or 1654. There he lived till his death Oct 23, 1690. One of the founders of New London and Stonington: prominent in public office: an organizer of the church.

Thomas Miner was born in Chew Magna, England, on April 23, 1608. His parents were Clement MINOR Sr. and [__?__].  He emigrated to Salem, Massachusetts in 1629, aboard the Lyon’s Whelp (See the story of the voyage here). He quickly moved to Watertown, and then on to Charlestown, after typhus fever broke out in Salem.  He married Grace PALMER on 23 Apr 1634 in Rehoboth, Plymouth, Mass.   In 1636, the Miners moved to Hingham.  After several years in Hingham, the family moved south to the Wequetequock area of present-day Stonington, Connecticut, where Miner and his son Ephraim helped found the Road Church. In about 1653, Miner bought land west of Stonington, across Quiambaug Cove near present-day Mystic, and built a house for his family. His diary covers  the years 1653 to 1684 and was published in book form in 1899. Thomas died on 23 Oct 1690 in Stonington, CT. He is buried with his wife Grace in Stonington’s Wequetequock Cemetery. The founders monument in Stonington has one side dedicated to him.

Thomas Miners wolfstone marker in Wequetequock cemetery.  Thomas Miner had selected this stone himself from his farm at Quiambaug. Here lyeth the body of Lieutenant Thomas Minor, aged 83 years. Departed 1690

Thomas wrote back to England  about 1683,  in investigation of his ancestory and received

A (False) Herauldical Essay Upon the Surname of Miner

Grace Palmer was born 9 May 1612 in England.   Her parents were Walter PALMER and Ann Elizabaeth SHORT. The first record we have of Grace Palmer is found in the “Record Book of the First Church in Charlestown” (Mass) when she, her father and her step-mother were admitted to membership on 1 June 1633.  Until her father married Rebecca Short in 1633, Grace, being the oldest child and daughter, probably was “mother” to her three younger brothers and one sister.  The name “Grace” was not one used often in the days of her birth and it is thought by some that she may have been named for her Aunt Grace Palmer, wife of Abraham Palmer,  who some believe was a brother to Walter, though no proof of that relationship has been found.  Grace died two weeks before her husband on 12 Oct 1690 in  Stonington,  CT.

Grace Palmer Gravestone

Thomas Miner – Wequeteduock Burial Ground

Children of Thomas and Grace:

Name Born Married Departed
1 John Minor 30 Aug 1635 Charlestown, MA Elizabeth Booth
19 Oct 1658 Stratford, CT
17 Sep 1719 Woodbury, Litchfield, CT
Clement MINER 4 Mar 1637/38 Hingham MA Frances BURCHAM (Widow of Isaac Willey)
26 Nov 1662
Martha Wellman
20 Feb 1672/73
Joanna [_?_].
8 Oct 1700 New London, CT
Thomas Miner 10 May 1640 Hingham MA Unmarried 19 April 1662 Narragansett, RI
4. Ephraim Minor 3 May 1642 Hingham Hannah Avery
20 Jun 1666 Stonington, CT
16 May 1724 Stonington, New London, CT
Dr. Joseph Miner 25 Aug 1644 Hingham Mary Avery
23 Oct 1668 New London
Bridget Chesebrough (Widow of William Thompson)
7 Dec 1709 Stonington, CT
1 Feb 1712 Stonington, New London
Judah Miner ca. 1646 Listed in books and the essay but unconfirmed in records
Manassah Miner 28 Apr 1647 New London Lydia Moore (Daughter of our ancestor Miles MOORE)
26 Sep 1670 New London
Frances West
20 Apr 1721 Stonington
22 Aug 1728 Stonington
Ann Miner 28 Apr 1649 New London 13 Aug 1652 Stonington (the first registered death in Stonington)
Mary Miner 5 May 1651 New London 24 Jan 1660/61 Stonington
Samuel Miner 4 Mar 1652/53 Stonington Marie Lord
15 Dec 1681
Jul 1682
Hannah Miner 15 Sep 1655 Stonington Thomas Avery
22 Oct 1677 Stonington
about 1692

Miner was active in public affairs in both New London and Stonington. He and his sons fought in King Philip’s War.

1632 –  Thomas was a founder of the First Church of Charlestown, his name appearing 34th on the roll. Two years later he was granted four acres of land at the line of Newtown, now Cambridge, and by 1637 owned a 10 acre plot.  Thomas Minor received lot 18 in the first division of land at Mystic side, now Charlestown, MA. on the sixth of the first month 1637. His future father-in-law Walter PALMER, receiving lot 15.

4 Mar 1633/34 – Thomas was made a freeman in Charlestown, Mass.

1636 –   The young couple moved once again, settling in Hingham, MA where they remained until 1645.  Thomas’ first child, John, was baptized in 1635 before they moved to Hingham.  During their years in Hingham, their sons Clement, Thomas, Ephraim and Joseph were born.

1645 – Thomas joined John Winthrop Jr.’s colony of Massachusetts Puritans in the settlement of New London, CT.   During the years that Thomas lived in New London, his son Mannassah and his daughters Ann and Mary were born.  Manassah was the first white child born in New London.

May 1649 – At the session of the General Court,  the following regulations were made respecting Pequot:

1. The inhabitants were exempted from all public country charges — i.e., taxes for the support of the colonial government — for the space of three years ensuing.

2. The bounds of the plantation were restricted to four miles each side of the river, and six miles from the sea northward into the country, ” till the court shall see cause and have encouragement to add thereunto, provided they entertain none amongst them as inhabitants that shall be obnoxious to this jurisdiction, and that the aforesaid bounds be not distributed to less than forty families.”

3. John Winthrop, Esq., with Thomas MINER and Samuel LOTHROP as assistants, were to have power as a court to decide all differences among the inhabitants under the value of forty shillings.

4. Uncas and his tribe were prohibited from setting any traps, but not from hunting and fishing within the bounds of the plantation.

5. The inhabitants were not allowed to monopolize the corn trade with the Indians in the river, which trade was to be left free to all in the united colonies.

6. ” The Courte commends the name of Faire Harbour to them for to bee the name of their Towne.”

7. Thomas MINER was appointed ” Military Sergeant in the Towne of Pequett,” with power to call forth and train the inhabitants.

May 1649 – By Colonial appointment Thomas Minor served as Magistrate or Justice, in the town of New London,

Sep 1650 – Thomas Minor and Jonathan Brewster were made the first deputies to the General Court (the Legislature) from Pequot, now New London, CT.

1652 –   Thomas moved to Pawcatuck, now Stonington, CT, and became a founder of the town with three associates:  William Chesebrough, Thomas Stanton, and his father-in-law, Walter Palmer.  On the grounds of Wequetequock Cemetery there is a monument honoring these four men.  In Stonington, Thomas built a house on land granted to him, which he later relinquished to Walter Palmer, there having been some confusion during which time the land was also granted to someone else who sold it to Mr. Palmer.

Stonington Map c. 1680

1652 –  A general apprehension existed throughout the country that the Indians were preparing for hostilities. The Narragansetts were especially regarded with suspicion, and preparations were made in the frontier towns to guard against surprise. At Pequot the town orders were peremptory for arming individuals and keeping a vigilant eye upon the natives. Watchmen were kept on the look-out both night and day. A fresh supply of ammunition was procured and the following directions published :

” July 8, 1652.

” Forfeiture of false raising of an alarum, £10.

” Forfeiture of not coming when an alarum is raised, £5.

” Forfeiture of not coming to there pticnlar squadron, £5.

“It is agreed y’ it shall be a just alarum when 3 gunnes are distinctly shot of, and the drum striking up an alarum.

“If the watchmen here a guun in the night, they well considering where the gunn was firing if they conceive to be in the Towne may raise an alarum.

” For the seting of a gunn for a wolfe they y* set a gunn for that end shall acquaint the constable where he sets it that he may acquaint the watch.”

Three places in the town were fortified, the mill, the meeting-house, and the house of Hugh Caulkins, which stood at the lower end of the town, near the entrance of Cape Ann Lane. The inhabitants were divided into three squadrons, and in case of an alarm Sergt. Miner’s squadron was to repair to Hugh Caulkins’, Capt. Denison’s to the meeting-house, and Lieut. Smith’s to the mill.

Severe restrictions were laid upon the trade with the Indians in the river, which was to be confined to Brewster’s trading-house. No individual could go up the river and buy corn without a special license, which was only to be given in case of great scarcity. Happilv no alarm occurred, and all fear of ‘an Indian war soon died away. But Mr. Brewster was allowed for several years to monopolize the Indian trade. This granting of monopolies was perhaps the greatest error committed by the fathers of the town of Stonington in their legislation.

1653 – Thomas then bought some land situated on Quiambaug Cove from Cary Latham.  In his diary, Thomas tells of his building his house at Quiambaug.  His first published month, November 1653, and the following month, December of the same year, indicate very clearly his life in Stonington.  During the following months, one can follow the building of his home:  “I had 9 peeces to hew”,  “I made an end of hewing of timber”, “goodman redfield was making our backe for our Chimbloy and wensday the 22nd our backe of our Chimbly was ended goodman Redfild has 22 s and 6 d for doing the stone walle”, “I had newly raised my roofe of my house”.

Quiambaug Cove looking North from the rocky point – the site of the original Miner farm is where the house in the photo is.  Part of the cove wraps around to the west(left), making this point a bit of a promontory – a great place to fish from.

Looking South from the same Quiambaug Cove location – the main channel passes right near this point, a few feet to the left.

Click Here to See Google Maps Satellite View of Thomas Miner’s Quiambaug Homestead

The current house (the third one on this site) on the location of the original Miner farm.

From 1658 to 1662 Thomas was a party to a dispute whether Stonington was part of Connecticut or Massachusetts.

Stonington was now settled, albeit somewhat sparsely. Stanton was on the Pawcatuck River, Walter Palmer on the east side of Wequetequock Cove, Chesebrough in Wequetequock and Stonington Point, Amos Richardson at Quanaduck, Hugh Calkins owning Wamphassuc Point, Isaac Willey owning Lord’s Point, Minor in Quiambaug, John Mason owning Mason’s Island and adjoining mainland up to Pequotsepos Brook, Denison in Pequotsepos, Gallop on the Mystic River, and Park in Mystic. Nearly all of the waterfront was taken, showing the keen interest of the settlers in seafood, salt marsh hay, and trading.

The inhabitants now faced difficulties: being accepted as a town by either Connecticut or Massachusetts, settling the old boundary disputes, deciding how to treat the remnants of the defeated Indian tribes, and providing for their own religious needs.

The settlers of Stonington, who had received various grants from Connecticut and New London, had no government and had resolved their affairs by discussions among themselves. They wanted a body of laws to guide them in their decisions and they also felt that the community needed the protection of a colony. Under the leadership of Chesebrough, who had been New London deputy to the Connecticut Court for several years, they petitioned the Court to be recognized as a township and also to permit them to establish a separate church. It was defeated, largely because of the opposition of New London, which wanted the town to extend eastward to the Pawcatuck. A second petition was likewise defeated.

Thwarted in their ambitions by Connecticut, the inhabitants of Mystic and Pawcatuck petitioned Massachusetts for the privilege of a township, twenty families now being settled in this place. This petition was backed by Captain George Denison, who had influential friends in Boston. This also failed. A second application was made and denied, with the suggestion that the matter be referred to the Commissioners of the United Colonies and that in the meantime they manage their own affairs. In 1658 the Massachusetts General Court resolved that the territory between the Mystic River and the Pawcatuck River be named Southertown and belong to Suffolk County, Massachusetts. The plantation was to extend into the interior eight miles from the mouth of the Mystic River. Captain George Denison and five others were appointed to manage prudential affairs; Captain Denison, William Chesebrough, and Thomas Minor were appointed commissioners to handle small causes. Walter Palmer was appointed constable.

In 1662 Governor John Winthrop, Jr., obtained a new charter for Connecticut from Charles II. It set the eastern boundary of Connecticut at the Pawcatuck River, putting Southertown back in Connecticut. William Chesebrough was elected the first deputy from Stonington to the Connecticut General Court. The name Southertown was changed to Mystic and shortly thereafter to Stonington. The old boundary dispute was finally settled; future disputes would arise between Connecticut and Rhode Island.

Stoington History

Oct 1664 and May 1665 – By Colonial appointment Thomas Minor served as Magistrate or Justice, in the town of  Stonington

May and Oct 1665; Oct, 1677;  Oct 1670;  Oct 1672;  May, 1677;  May and Oct, 1679; May, 1680: and Oct 1689 – Thomas served as deputy to the Connecticut General Court from Stonington.    He was selected Commissioner in dealings with the Indians and settlers inasmuch as he had mastered the language of the Indians so he could act as interpreter in dealings between them and the white settlers.

May, 1666 – Thomas received a Colonial grant of 100 acres of land and in October, 1667, 50 acres more; such grants were made to those who had performed distinguished public service.  His last two children, Samuel and Hannah, were born 4 March 1652 and 15 Sept 1655, respectively.

“This 24th of Aprill, 1669, [From his diary]  I thomas Minor am by my accounts sixtie one yeares ould I was by the towne & this yeare Chosen to be a select man in the Townes Treasurer The Townes Recorder The Brander of horses by the generale Courte Recorded in the head officer of the Traine band by the same Courte one of ffoure tht have the charge of the milischia of the whole Countie and Chossen and sworne Commissionor and one to assist in keeping the Countie Courte”.

1675 – Thomas was a lieutenant in the Narragansett Campaign of King Phillip’s War in  1675-76.  He reportedly took part in the “Great Swamp Fight” near Kingstown, RI even though he would have been 67 years old.  Almost all of the able-bodied men of Stonington were engaged in the Indian wars of their time.   Thomas was appointed Member of a Court Martial to meet in New London, January 2, 1676.

Jul 1685 –  Appointed Chief Military Officer of the Mystic Trainband.  During King Phillip’s War, Thomas served as a Lieutenant and was referred to that title in February and in April of 1676.  In August, 1676, he was called Captain, although in later years, he usually is mentioned as Lieutenant.

Sometime during the mid 1600s, perhaps about 1683, Thomas Miner wrote back to England to answer the question whether the surname should be spelled with an “e” or an “o”,  In return, he received the this linked manuscript. It purports to explain the origin of the name by noting that a Henry Miner of the Mendip Hills in Somerset was given a coat of arms by Edward III for his services for the up-coming war with the French.

The reason (as Garcillasso sayeth, page 432) is this: Edward the third going to make warre against the French took a progress through Somersett and coming to Mendippe Colles Minerary, Mendippe Hills in Somersett, where lived one Henry MINER [1] his name being taken both a denominatione loci et ab officio, who with all carefullness and loyalitie having convened his domestic and menial servants armed with battle axes, proffered himself and them to his master’s service, making up a complete hundred.

This Henry was said to have been a miner, or mine operator; therefore, the name should be spelled with an “e.”  Since receieving the scroll in 1683, our line of Miners have used an “e'”  The essayist went on to give the descent from Henry (said to have died in 1359) to Thomas and cited Thomas’s children. The coat of arms is colorfully displayed at the top of the scroll.

For over a period of perhaps some three hundred years, descendants of  Thomas Minor, as well as students and writers of history and genealogy, have accepted a certain coat of arms and the seventeenth-century essay detailing Thomas’s heritage as fact.

Parish Church of St Andrew where Thomas Miner was christened in 1608

The authenticity of the scroll and the coat of arms remained unquestioned until the fall of 1979 when some 75 descendants journeyed to Chew Magna, Somerset, England, Thomas’s birthplace, to commemorate the 350th anniversary of his departure for America. To recognize the occasion, a marble plaque honoring Thomas Minor was affixed to an inner wall of St. Andrew’s Church where he was baptized in 1608. His coat of arms was to have been placed above the plaque, but this was delayed pending approval by the bishop following the customary search and recommendation of the College of Arms.

Thomas Miner – Commemoration Plaque St Andrews Church Chew Magma England

In late November 1979, the Chester Herald, D. H. B. Chesshyre, M.A., F.S.A., of the College of Arms sent a letter to the Vicar of St. Andrew’s Church, stating he had “found no references to the Miners of Chew in any of the Herald’s visitations to Somerset and, thus, no confirmation of the arms which appeared to be very similar to those of a family of Mynors of Uttoxeter – but with a different crest.” Accordingly, he would not recommend the display of the arms in question. Details are described in “The Curious Pedigree of Lt. Thomas Minor”. Much the contents of this document and the coat of arms it presents are FALSE.  If a family history has been a fiction for 327 years doesn’t that become real for us?   Plus, we have a story to tell when people want to spell our name with an “o”!

1980 – Christams Greetings from Chew Magma

1980 – Christmas Greetings St Andrew Church Chew Magma

1980 – Greetings from the Vicar and People of Chew Magma


1. John Minor

John’s wife Elizabeth Booth was born 10 Sep 1641 in Stratford, CT. Her parents were Richard Booth and Elizabeth [__?__]. Elizabeth died on 24 Oct 1732. John and Elizabeth were the 4GG of General and President Ulysses S. Grant. (See lineage below)

John spelled his name Minor and so did most of his descendants. On 23 Sep 1654, John Stanton and John Minor were selected for teachers of the Gospel to the Indians. Both young men, however, left their studies. About a year later John moved to Stratford, CT where on 19 Oct 1658 he married Elizabeth.

A dispute over the replacement of the first pastor, the aging Mr Blackman, arose. The followers of Israel Chauncey remained in Stratford while the followers of Zechariah Walker received permission to start a new plantation at Woodbury, Litchfield, CT in May of 1672. John Minor settled in what is now Woodbury in the spring of 1673 where he was town clerk for about 30 years before dying there on 17 September 1719. Elizabeth died on 24 October 1732.  John served as Deputy for Stratford, Oct 1676, and for Woodbury Nov 1683.

John Minor was a founder of Woodbury, Litchfield, CT. The center of Woodbury is distinctive because, unlike many New England towns, it is not nucleated. In Woodbury, the older buildings are arrayed in linear fashion along both sides of a road that stretches for over a mile.

History of New London county, Connecticut, with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men (1882) by Hurd, D. Hamilton

The commissioners of the United Colonies were in 1650 appointed agents of the Society for Propagating the Gospel among the Indians in New England ; in pursuance of which, in 1657, they proposed to Rev. Richard Blinman to become the missionary of the Pequots and Mohegans, offering him a salary of twenty pounds per annum which he declined.

The same year they employed the Rev. William Thompson, son of the Rev. William Thompson of Braintree, Mass., to preach to the Pequots at a salary of twenty pounds per annum.

He came to Southertown in 1658, and began his labors with Harmon Garret’s company, and was assisted by Thomas Stanton as interpreter. He continued to preach to the English and Indians for about three years, and then went to Virginia.

After this the commissioners, in 1662, invited the Rev. Abraham Pierson, of Bradford, Conn., to remove his habitation to Southertown, and to apply himself in a more special way to the work of preaching the gospel to the Pequots, but he declined.

Previous to this, and in the year 1654, the commissioners of the United Colonies, at the request of the Connecticut members thereof, provided for the education of Mr. John Miner with the Rev. Mr. Stone, who was to fit him as a teacher and missionary to the Pequot Indians.

Soon after Mr. Thompson left the commissioners, in 1664, instructed the Connecticut members to employ this Mr. John Miner to teach the Pequots to read ; but whether he was so employed or not does not appear. The commissioners also, in 1654, offered, at the expense of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, to educate Thomas and John Stanton, sons of Thomas Stanton, the interpreter-general at Cambridge, Mass. The object was to fit them as teachers for such Indian children as should be taken into college to be educated. They accepted the commissioners’ offer and entered college, but did not remain long enough to graduate, nor does it appear that either of them was ever engaged in teaching the Indians.

The efforts of the English to civilize and Christianize the Pequots were not very successful, the reasons for which may be more easily imagined than described. The agents of the London Missionary Society did not wholly neglect them, for as late as 1766 they employed Mr. Hugh Sweatingham to teach the Pequots, at their school-house at Mashantuxet, at twelve pounds per annum. They also employed Mr. Jacob Johnson to preach to them at five shillings elghtpence per sermon.

Children of John and Elizabeth:

i. John Minor b. 9 Sep 1659 Stratford, Fairfield, CT; d. 14 Mar 1730/31 Stratford, Fairfield, CT; m. bef. 1686 in Woodbury to Sarah Rose (b. Aug 1664 in Woodbury, Litchfield, CT – d. 1731 in Woodbury)

ii. Thomas Minor b. 29 May 1662 Stratford; d. 15 Jun 1722 Woodbury; m. Hannah Curtiss. Her parents were Israel Curtiss and Rebecca [__?__]. There were three marriages between these siblings. Hannah’s sister Rebecca married Thomas’ brother Ephraim and Hannah’s brother Stephen married Thomas’ sister Sarah.

iii. Hannah Minor b. 2 Oct 1664; d. May 1683

iv. Elizabeth Minor b. 16 Jan 1666/67; d. 19 Dec 1749; m. Zechariah Walker (bapt. 22 May 1670 in Stratford, Fairfield, CT – d. 21 Dec 1753 in Woodbury) Zechariah’s parents were Zechariah Walker and Mary Prudden. Their nine children were born in Woodbury, CT and baptized there at the First Congregation Church

v. Grace Minor b. 12 Sep 1670 Woodbury; d. 16 Apr 1753 East Windsor, Hartford CT; m. 11 Apr 1688 in East Windsor, Hartford CT to Samuel Grant (b. 20 Apr 1659 in Windsor, Hartford CT – d. 8 May 1710 in East Windsor) Samuel’s parents were Samuel Grant, Sr (b. 12 Nov 1631 in Dorchester, Suffolk County, Mass) and Mary Porter (b. 1 Oct 1637 in Messing, Essex, England) He first married 6 DEC 1683 in East Windsor, Hartford CT Anna Filley. On 2 Sep 1684 Anna had triplets: Anna, Hannah and Sarah.

Their son Capt. Noah Grant (b. 11 Dec 1693 in Windsor, Hartford, CT – d. 10 Oct 1727 in Tolland, CT) married Martha Huntington (1696 – 1779)

Their grandson Noah Grant (b. 12 Jul 1718 in Tolland, Tolland, CT – d. 20 Sep 1756 in CT) narried Susanna DeLano (1724 – 1806)

Their great grandson Noah Grant (b. 20 Jun 1748 in Tolland, Tolland, CT – d. 14 Feb 1819 in Maysville, Kentucky) married Rachel Kelly (1774 – 1860)

Their 2nd great grandson Jesse Root Grant (b. 23 Jan 1794 near Greensburgh, PA – d. 29 Jun 1873 in Covington, Campbell, KY) married Hannah Simpson (1821 – ) Jesse was a self-reliant tanner (leather producer) and businessman from an austere family.

Their 3rd great grandson was Ulysses Hiram “Simpson” Grant (27 Apr 1822 in Point Pleasant, Ohio – d. 23 Jul 1885 in Mount McGregor, Saratoga County, New York)

Ulysses Grant (1870-1880) 18th President of the United States

Raised in a Methodist family devoid of religious pretentiousness, Ulysses prayed privately and was not an official member of the church. Unlike his younger siblings, Grant was neither disciplined, baptized, nor forced to attend church by his parents. Grant is said to have inherited a degree of introversion from his reserved, even “uncommonly detached” mother (she never took occasion to visit the White House during her son’s presidency). Grant assumed the duties expected of him as a young man at home, which primarily included maintaining the firewood supply; he thereby developed a noteworthy ability to work with, and control, horses in his charge, and used this in providing transportation as a vocation in his youth. At the age of 17, with the help of his father, Grant was nominated by Congressman Thomas L. Hamer for a position at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Hamer mistakenly nominated him as “Ulysses S. Grant of Ohio.” At West Point, he adopted this name with a middle initial only. His nickname became “Sam” among army colleagues at the academy, since the initials “U.S.” stood for “Uncle Sam”. The “S”, according to Grant, did not “stand for anything”, though Hamer had used it to abbreviate his mother’s maiden name

vi. Joseph Minor b. 4 Mar 1672/73 Stratford, CT; d. 30 Oct 1774 in Woodbury aged 101 years, 7 months, 26 days; m. Susanna Roots (b. 13 May 1678 in Fairfield, CT – d. 26 Apr 1738.) Susanna’s parents were John Root and Dorcas Abbott.

Joesph served the town of Woodbury in many capacities for many years and achieved the military rank of Colonel.

vii. Sgt. Ephraim Minor b. 24 Oct 1675 Stratford, CT; d. 16 Sep 1762 Woodbury; m. 21 Aug 1701 to Rebecca Curtiss ( b. d. 13 March 1763) Her parents were Israel Curtiss and Rebecca Beardsley. There were three marriages between these siblings. Rebecca’s sister Hannah married Ephraim’s brother Thomas and her brother Stephen married Ephraim’s sister Sarah.

viii. Sarah Minor b. 19 Jun 1678; m. Stephen Curtiss. His parents were Israel Curtiss and Rebecca Beardsley. There were three marriages between these siblings. Stephen’s sister Hannah married Sarah’s brother Thomas and his sister Rebecca married Sarah’s brother Ephraim.

ix. Abigail Minor b. 6 Feb 1680/81 Woodbury, CT; d. 10 Aug 1759; m1. John Treadwell (b. 11 Feb 1673/4 – d. 15 Aug 1716 in Stratford, CT); m2. 22 Nov 1721 to Samuel Miles (b. 23 Mar 1671/72 – d. 5 Jul 1756) on

x. Joanna Minor bapt. 29 Jul 1683 Woodbury, CT; d. 24 May 1741 and was buried Gaylordsville Cemetery Litchfield.; m. 12 Feb 1706/07 in Woodbury to William Gaylord (b. 16 Jan 1675 – d. 25 Oct 1753).

2. Clement MINER (See his page)

3. Thomas Miner

Thomas MINER Diary — “Thomas first fell sick at Narraganset as he was looking the mares … Thomas departed (this life) sabath being 20 he buried the 22 [April] 1662. [age 21]

4. Ephraim Minor

Ephraim’s wife Hannah Avery was born 11 Oct 1644 in Gloucester, Essex, Mass. Her parents were Capt. James Avery and Joanna Greenslade. Hannah died 22 Aug 1721 in Stonington, New London CT and is buried in the Old Taugwonk Cemetery.

Hannah Avery Minor Gravestone — Old Taugwonk Cemetery, Stonington, New London, CT

Ephraim went with his father’s family to Pequot (later New London) in 1645 and in 1653 they moved to Quiambog Cove in Stonington. That place remained in possession of their descendants until a few years before 1981.

Ephraim lived at Stonington, CT, was a farmer, freeman, 1669, deputy to the general court, 1676, 1677, 1681, 1690-93, 1699, 1701-05, 1713; lieutenant of train band. He served in the King Philip war and for his service received arable land and cedar swamp in Voluntown, CT.  (See Great Swamp Fight – Aftermath for details) Ephriam was thirteen years old when his family left Hingham. There he had known eleven year old Hannah Avery, daughter of James Avery. Ten years later they were married after the Averys moved to Groton. He faught in King Philip’s War when he was thrity-three. He left ten children, and was buried at Taugwonk.

Ephraim Miner – Gravestone – Burial:Old Taugwonk Cemetery StoningtonNew London Connecticut,

Children of Ephraim and Hannah:

i. Hannah Minor b. 5 Apr 1667; d. 26 May 1667

ii. Capt. Ephraim Minor Jr. b. 22 Jun 1668; d. 19 Feb 1739/40 Stonington, New London, CT; Burial:Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. 24 May 1694 in New London to Mary Stevens (b. 8 Jun 1672 Taunton, Bristol, Mass. – d. 27 Sep 1748 Stonington, New London, CT; Burial Old Taugwonk Cemetery) Mary’s parents were Richard Stevens and Mary Lincoln of Taunton, Mass.  Ten Children: Ephraim Minor IIIThomas MinorMary Minor Wheeler, Henry Minor, Rufus MinorBridget Minor Grant, Simeon Minor, Stephen Minor, Hannah Minor Punderson, and Samuel Minor.

Ephraim was a sergeant when promoted to a lieutenant in May 1704 of the New London County Troop, a lieutenant of the North Stonington Company Oct 1707, and a captain of the Stonington 2nd Company Oct 1715. He was a deputy from Stonington to the General Court for many years

iii. Thomas Minor b. 17 Dec 1669; d. 8 Sep 1688

iv. Hannah Minor b. 20 Apr 1671 Stonington; d. Bef. 1710 in Stonington; m. 6 Jan 1691/92 in Stonington to Samuel Frink (b. 14 Feb 1667/68 in Stonington – d. 12 Oct 1713 in Stonington) Samuel’s parents were John Frink (b: 20 Aug 1639 in Malborough, Devon, England) and Grace Stevens (b: 24 Jan 1632/33 in Chepstow, Monmouthshire, England) Samuel and Hannah had nine children born between 1693 and 1708. After Hannah died, Samuel married ~1709 in Stonington to Dorothy Stanton (bapt. 24 Apr 1682 in Stonington) and had three more Frinks.

v. Rebecca Minor (twin) b. 17 Sep 1672 Taugwonk, Stonington; d. 15 Jan 1746/47 Stonington, New London, CT; Burial Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. 8 Jul 1696 Stonington, CT to Josiah Grant (b. 19 Mar 1668 Windsor, Hartford, CT – d. 28 Mar 1732 Stonington, New London, CT; Burial Old Taugwonk Cemetery) Josiah’s parents were Samuel Grant and Mary Porter.

In Memory of
Rebecca ye Spouse of
Mr. Josiah Grant died
Janr. ye 15 A.D. 1746
in ye 75th Year of
Her Age

Josiah and Rebecca joined the First Congregational Church of Stonington on August 27, 1699.

Children: Josiah Grant JrJohn GrantOliver Grant, Noah Grant*, and Miner Grant.

(* NOTE: Noah Grant married Hannah Minor, daughter of Thomas Minor and Hannah Avery Minor, as evidenced by the 1762 will of Hannah Avery Minor.)

vi. Deborah Minor (twin) b. 17 Sep 1672 Taugwonk, Stonington; d. bef. 15 Apr 1676 in Taugwonk, Stonington

vii. Elizabeth Minor b. 30 Apr 1674; d. 19 Jan 1736 Stonington, New London CT; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery ; m. 16 Oct 1692 Stonington to John Brown (b. 1664 Lynn, Essex, Mass. – d. Aug 1733 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery) John’s parents were  Thomas Brown (1626 – 1693) and   Mary Newhall  (1637 – 1694).  His grandparents were our ancestors Nicholas BROWN and Elizabeth LEIDS. Elizabeth and John had ten children born between 1693 and 1716.

John moved to North Stonington as a young man. He built his residence west of the site of the old Roswell Brown Tavern years before the New London and Providence Turnpike was built. On the preceding track of land described is one of the old burying grounds in the town. Before the turnpike was built, a road passed by this ancient burying ground but after the turnpike the road was abandoned. No internments have been made for many years. Many settlers including John are buried here but no headstones remain.

viii. Samuel Minor b. 9 Dec 1675 Taugwonk, Stonington; d. bef. Aug 1681

ix. Deborah Minor b. 15 Apr 1677 Taugwonk, Stonington; d. 19 Sep 1678

x. Deborah Minor bapt. 30 Mar 1679 Stonington; d. 8 Sep 1697 in Westerly, Washington, Rhode Island of Complications from child birth; m. 8 Jul 1696 in Westerly to Joseph Pendleton (29 Dec 1661 in Sudbury, Middlesex Mass – d. 18 Sep 1706 in Westerly) Joseph’s parent were James Pendleton (b. ~1628 in City of London) and Hannah Goodenow (b: 28 Nov 1630 in Sudbury, Mass.). After Deborah died, he married 11 Dec 1700 in Westerly to Patience Potts (b: 12 Aug 1683 in Groton, Middlesex, Mass.)

Joseph took oath of allegiance to the Colony of Rhode Island at Westerly Sep 17, 1679, elected constable of the town 1697, tax assessor 1698, 1699, 1704 and 1705, admitted to the Church of Stonington May 24, 170 2, elected town clerk of Westerly for six consecutive years, he styled “Ensign” 1703, and elected grand juryman 1706.

xi. Ensign Samuel Minor b. 28 Aug 1680 Stonington, New London CT; d. 8 Dec 1717 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. 1 Apr 1702 at Stonington to Anna Denison (b. After Samuel died, Anna married Mar 2, 1717/18 at Westerly,RI, her cousin Edward Denison, an innkeeper at Westerly,RI, as his second wife.

Oct 1716 an ensign in the 2nd Company, Stonington

xii. James Minor b. Nov 1682 Stonington, New London CT; d. 3 Jun 1726 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m1. Abigail Eldredge (b. 19 Aug 1688 Kingston, Washington, Rhode Island – d. 13 Aug 1720 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery buried also a new born baby) Abigail’s sister Mary married James’ brother John. Her parents were Capt. Daniel Eldredge (  ?  – 1726) and Mary Phillips; m2. 4 May 1721 Stonington to Sarah Ayers.

In May 1720, James became lieutenant of the 3rd Company, Stonington. He was later elected or appointed deputy to the Connecticut General Court (State legislature)

Children(by first marriage): James Minor Jr, Charles Minor, Zerviah Minor, Daniel Minor, Abigail Miner Fanning (1714 – 1777), Sarah Minor, Freelove Minor Hilliard, Anna Minor Fanning, and an infant daughter.

Children(by second marriage): Sarah Minor Shaw and Eunice Minor Jones. [These are children attributed to this James Minor in Avery and Minor genealogies. They are more likely attributable to James Minor Jr, who married Sarah Breed in 1724.]

Abigail Miner Fanning was the wife of John Fanning . and mother of three sons, Nathan, Roger & Thomas– Officers in the U.S. Navy of the Revolutionary War, lost, with their father in that service.


James Minor Headstone — Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery

xiii. Grace Minor b. Sep 1683 in Stonington; m. 10 Jan 1701/02 in Stonington to her first cousin once removed William Palmer (bapt. 25 Apr 1678 in Stonington – d. 1729 in Pun-hun-gue-nuck, North Stonington) William’s parents were Gershom Palmer (b: 14 Apr 1644 in Rehoboth, Bristol, Mass.) and Ann Denison (b: 20 May 1649 in Roxbury, Suffolk, Mass.) His grandparents were  Walter PALMER and Ann Elizabaeth SHORT.

xiv. John Minor b. 19 Apr 1685 Stonington; d. 8 Feb 1716/17 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. 5 May 1709 in Stonington to Mary Eldredge (b. 6 Dec 1691 in Groton, New London, CT) Mary’s sister Abigail married John’s brother James. Her parents were also Daniel Eldredge (b. 1663 in Wickford, Washington , RI) and Mary Philips (b: 1665)

John Minor Headstone — Old Taugwonk Cemetery, Stonington

xv./xvi. Twins b. 22 Mar 1687; d. 23 Mar 1687

5. Joseph Miner

Joseph’s first wife Mary Avery was born 19 Feb 1648 in Gloucester, Essex, Mass. Her parents were James Avery and Joanna Greenslade. Mary died 2 Feb 1708 in Stonington, New London, CT and is buried in the Old Taugwonk Cemetery.

Joseph’s second wife Bridget Chesebrough was born 25 Mar 1669 in Stonington, New London, CT. Her parents were Nathaniel Chesebrough and Hannah Denison. She first married 7 Dec 1692 in Stonington, New London, CT. to William Thompson (b. 9 Apr 1664 in Stonington, New London, CT – d. 13 Jun 1705 in Stonington, New London, CT) Bridget died 28 Nov 1720 in Stonington, New London, CT.

Joseph removed from Nameaug to Southertown, Massachusetts to what later became Stonington, Connecticut with his father’s family. Joseph was a farmer and physician. He became a freeman 1669; deputy to the general court, 1696, 1706; selectman, 1694-98, 1704, 1709, 1719. He served in King Philip’s War and for his services received arable land cedar swamp in Voluntown, Connecticut. (See Great Swamp Fight – Aftermath for details)

Thomas MINER records in his diary, March, 1667/8: “wensday the 18, we made an End between Jossepth and Marie Averie.”

On the Stonington town books in the following:

Joseph, son of Thomas Minor and Marie, daughter of James Averie of New London, married the 23d of October [1668] by Lieut. James Averie.

Joseph Miner – Headstone – Old Taugwonk Cemetery, Stonington, Connecticut

Children of Joseph and Mary

i. Joseph Minor b. 19 Sep 1669 Stonington; d. 8 Feb 1739/40 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. Sarah Tracy (b. 17 Dec 1677 Preston, New London CT – d. 24 Nov 1758 Stonington Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery) Joseph’s sister Sarah married Sarah’s brother Nathaniel. Sarah’s parents were Sgt. Thomas Tracy and Sarah [__?__].

ii. Marie Minor b. 6 Oct 1671; d. 29 Nov 1704 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. Elisha Chesebrough (b. 4 Apr 1667 Wequetequock, New London CT – d. 1 Sep 1727 Stonington; Burial: Chesebrough Cemetery)  His parents were  Samuel Chesebrough (1625 – 1673) and   Abigail Ingraham Holmes (1636 – 1714)

iii. Mercy Minor b. 21 Aug 1673; d. 6 Sep 1751 Tolland, Tolland CT; Burial: South Yard Cemetery; m. 20 Dec 1696 at Preston, Conn. (by Samuel Mason, Assistant) to Francis West (b. 13 Dec 1669 Duxbury, Plymouth, Mass. – d. 12 May 1731 Tolland, Tolland CT) His parents were Samuel West and Tryphosa Partridge.

iv. Benjamin Minor bapt 25 Jun 1676; d. 28 Feb 1711 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery ; m. Mary Saxton (b. 4 Sep 1681 Stonington – d. 17 Oct 1750 Stonington) After Benjamin died, Mary married Joseph Page (b. 31 Dec 1679 Watertown, Middlesex, Mass.)

v. Sarah Minor bapt. 30 Mar 1679; d. 24 Nov 1753 Preston, New London, CT; Burial: Palmer Cemetery ; m. Nathaniel Tracy (b. 19 Dec 1675 Preston – d. 12 Mar 1751 Preston; Burial: Palmer Cemetery) Sarah’s brother Joseph married Nathaniel’s sister Sarah. Nathaniel’s parents were Sgt. Thomas Tracy and Sarah [__?__].

vi. Joanna Minor b. 12 Dec 1680; d. 15 Jan 1725/26 Stonington; Burial: Richardson Grave; Inscription: ye wife of Mr. Stephen Richardson, in the 47th year of her age; m. Stephen Richardson

vii. Christopher Minor b. 28 Dec 1683 Stonington, CT; d. 11 Dec 1707; m. 9 Mar 1703/04 to Mary Lay Her parents were Robert Lay and Mary [__?__].   After Christopher died, Mary married Joseph Page on 12 April 1709.

viii. Prudence Minor bapt. 6 May 1688; d. 17 May 1726 Stonington, Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery; m. Joseph Denison (b. 1681 Westerly, Washington, Rhode Island – d. 18 Feb 1724 Stonington; Burial: Old Taugwonk Cemetery) Joseph’s parents were George Denison and Mercy Gorham. His grandparents were our ancestors Capt. John GORHAM and Desire HOWLAND.

Children of Joseph and Bridget

ix. Bridget Minor b. 1 Jan 1710/11; d. 23 Apr 1766 Stonington; Burial: Wequetequock Burial Ground; m Jonathan Chesebrough (b. 13 Feb 1699 Stonington – d. 16 Nov 1764 New London CT; Burial: Wequetequock Burial Ground, Stonington)

7. Manassah Minor

Manassah was the first white child born in New London, Connecticut.

Manassah’s first wife Lydia Moore was born 6 Oct 1644 in Stonington, New London, CT.  Her parents were our ancestors Miles MOORE and  Isabell JOYNER.   Lydia died 12 Aug 1720 in Stonington, New London, CT.

Lyde Moore Minor Gravestone — Wequetequock Burial Ground, Stonington, New London, CT

Manassah’s second wife Frances West (Werden)  was born about 1650.

Manasseh Minor – Gravestone – Wequetequock Burial Ground Stonington, New London, Connecticut

Children of Manassa and Lydia

i. Elnathan Miner b. 5 Oct 1671 New London

ii. Lt. Elnathan Miner b. 28 Ded 1673 in Quiambog Cove, Stonington, New London, CT; d. 11 Oct 1756 Stonington; m1. 21 Mar 1694 to Rebecca Baldwin (b. 22 Jun 1668 Stonington – d. 19 Feb 1740 Stonington Burial: Wequetequock Burial Ground). Her parents were John Baldwin Sr. (bapt. 28 Oct 1635 in Aston Clinton, Buckinghamshire, England – d.  19 Aug 1683 Stonington) and Rebecca Palmer (bapt. 7 Jul 1647 in Rehoboth, Mass.)  Her grandparents were .Walter PALMER and Rebecca SHORT.  

Elnathan and Rebecca had 4 children born in Stonington, CT. Rebecca died on 12 Mar 1700/01, and he married second 21 Mar 1694 to Prudence Richardson, daughter of Amos Richardson and Mary Smith and widow of Capt. John Hallam, (b. 166 Barbados – d. 20 Nov 1700 Stonington) on 17 Mar 1702/3. They had 1 child born in Stonington. She died on 6 Aug 1716 and is buried in Wequetequock Burial Ground,Stonington.  Elnathan married third 14 Oct 1718 to Tamsen Wilcox. They had 1 child born in Stonington.

Elnathan was elected or appointed Stonington Town Clerk for many years. He was elected or appointed OCT 1705 Deputy for Stonington.

iii. Samuel Miner b. 20 Sep 1674; bapt. 15 Nov 1674; d. 17 Nov 1693

iv. Hannah Miner b. 1 Dec 1676; d. 22 Aug 1751 Stonington; Burial: Wequetequock Burial Ground; m. 4 Jul 1698 in Stonington to Elihu Chesebrough (b. 3 Dec 1668 in Wequetequock, New London CT – d. 28 Jun 1750 in Stonington Burial: Wequetequock Burial Ground). His parents were Elisha Chesebrough and Rebecca Palmer.   His grandparents were Walter PALMER and Rebecca SHORT

A portion of an extract of Elihu’s estate (from the Wildey book with minor punctuation changes for clarity):

In an Inventory of Mr. Elisha Chesebrough’s Estate, which is quite long, dated Nov. 25, 1769, among “silver buckles, leather breeches, horses, mares, sheep and lambs, hogs and cattle” t he next after “12 calves at 12s each” is:

£/ s
A Negro Man named Jeremiah 400/
Do named Prince 400/ 40 00
Do named Africa 500/
Do named Jack 900/
A negro boy named Cuffee 700/ – 105 00
Do named Negro 700/
Do named Cato 600/
A Pigeon Net 5/
Wheat riddles 3/ – 65 08

v. Lydia Miner bapt. 17 Aug 1679; d. 21 Apr 1707; Stonington from complications with the birth of her son John Baldwin  m. Sylvester Baldwin (b. 4 Mar 1676/77 in Stonington)  His parents were John Baldwin Sr. (bapt. 28 Oct 1635 in Aston Clinton, Buckinghamshire, England – d.  19 Aug 1683 Stonington) and Rebecca Palmer (bapt. 7 Jul 1647 in Rehoboth, Mass. – d.  2 May 1713 Stonington)  His grandparents were Walter PALMER and Rebecca SHORT. After Lydia died, Sylvester married 9 May 1724 in Stonington by Rev. James Hillhouse to Lydia’s cousin Elizabeth Avery (b. 9 Dec 1691 in Norwich, New London, CT – d.. 17 Jul 1728 in Stonington) Elizabeth’s parents were Thomas Avery and Hannah Miner (See below).

vi. Thomas Miner b. 20 Sep 1683 Stonington; d. 9 Apr 1739 Stonington; buried  12 Apr 1739   at Wequetequock Cemetery under a large carved slab. He left a will dated 9 Apr 1739.; m. Hannah Avery m. 26 Dec 1706, he married his first cousin Hannah Avery ( 4 May 1686 Stonington – d. 9 Dec 1762 Stonington;buried in Thomas Miner Cemetery, Stonington). Hannah’s parents were Thomas Avery and Hannah Minor (see below).

10. Samuel Miner

Samuel was born 4 March 1652/53. His father wrote to Winthrop 17 January 1652/3 “at this time think meet to acquaint you with the present trouble that I and my wife is in though an unfit time to trouble her in the condition she is in.”

11. Hannah Miner

Hannah’s husband  Thomas Avery was born 6 May 1651 in New London, New London, CT. His parents were James Avery and Joanna Greenslade. Thomas died 5 Jan 1736 in Montville, New London, CT.

Thomas served in King Philip’s War and was a successful Indian interpreter. During the latter part of his life he removed to Montville, Conn.

The following items are taken from Thomas MINER’s diary:

    • 1655, Oct. ‘Satterday the 15 my wife was delivered of hana’
    • ‘Tho: Averie and Hanah Minor was maried the 22 of october 1677.’
    • 1679, April. ’20 day Hanah son was borne.’
    • 1680, Nov. ‘Monday the 15, hanahs second sonn was borne.’
    • The second of October 1682 Tho: Averys daughter was borne.’
    • 1684, Aug. ‘Tuesday the 12, Thomas Avery his childe was buried.’
    • Hanah Avery her children. Tho Avery Samuell Avery Ephriam Avery Hanah Avery.’ This last item has no date but must have been written shortly before his death.

Thomas Avery may have for a short time at Stonington, but most of his life was spent at New London, first on the east side of the river in what is now Groton, and later in the North Parish, now called Montville. May 12, 1681, he was made a freeman of New London; May, 1693, he was commissioned captain of the train band on the east side of the river, New London; in 1694, he was deputy of the general court.

It is evident that James Avery and Thomas Minor had a clear understanding concerning the marriage portions to be given to their children. One the twenty-sixth of December, 1677, Captain James Avery and his wife, Joanna, executed a deed which was owned and subscribed before Thomas Minor as commissioner. The deed ran as follows:

This prsnt writing witnesseth to all it doe or may concerne that I James Avery of the couonty of New London, in ye Collony6 of Connecticott for divers good reasons & considerations known to myself and with my wife Joane Avery’s consent fully give to my sonn Thomas Avery and his wife Hannah Avery my whole right of my parcell of land that I borght of Amos Richardson of Stonington be it more or less wh formerly was laide out and bounded to Mr. Obadiah Bruen of New London and also thirtie acres of upland upon Poquanys Plaine as it was formerly bounded to me from the swamp to the river, moreover one halfe of one hundred acres of upland and meadow as it was carried out and bounded and recorded to me at Pachauge next to Mr. Thomas Stanton, sen., his land. Also a piece of land joyning to Mr. Nehemiah Smith his playne lying betwixt Nehemiah Smiths land & ye comon I say all and every of these tracts and parcels of land I I doe give grant pass over alyeanate & confirm all my whole right and title to my sonn Thomas Avery & his wife Hannah Avery with all the privilledges & appurtenances to them belonging to them their heirs, executors and assigns forever to have & to hold possess & enjoy to use & improve for their best advantage provided that if either he or she shall have occasion to sell any one or more of these particular tracts or parcells of land they shall first make tender of it to the said Thomas Avery’s Brothers and if they accept of the profer to give a rational price for it to sell it to no other person I doe hereby bind my other sonnes to make him or her the like tender upon the same terms and to the ture performance of and to every particular hereof we set our hands & seals this 26th of December, 1677.

Signed seaaled and delivered in the presence of
James Avery
William Mead                        Joane Avery
Jonathan Avery
(New London Deeds.)

Thomas Minor and Grace his wife had already deeded, Dec 17, 1677, 150 acres of land to their daughter Hannah and her husband, Thomas Avery:

 To daughter Hannah Avery, during her natural life and to her husband Thomas Avery during his natural life although my said daughter should die before him and in case my daughter shall have any child or children at the time of her departure then living it shall be theirs forever to have and to hold possess and enjoy to use and improve with all the meadows joining to it, I say all the one hundred and fifty acres of upland and meadow as it was laid out to me with all the privileges & appurtenance belonging thereunto. And in case my daughter should die without any child then she shall have by deed full power to dispose of it to any one or two of my son Clement Minor, his sonnes as she shall see meet. Provided it shall not prevent her husband of it during his natural life if she die before her husband. I say my one hundred and fifty acres of upland and meadow lying at Anagomenacunuck as it was laid out to me and bounded and recorded at Hartford and in Stonington books of records. And hereinto we set our hands and seals this seventeenth day of December one thousand six hundred and seventy and seven.

James Noyes                         Thomas Minor
Samuel Avery                        Grace Minor
Acknowledged before James Avery Commissioner.

Thomas Avery was in the King Philip war of 1675, and, for his services, hat lot No. 10 of arable land and lot No. 154 of cedar swamp allotted to him in Voluntown.

Thomas was in the ill fated Fitz-John Winthrop expedition of 1690 which was to advance from Albany by way of Lake Champlain to Montreal.  For details on the campaign, see my post Battle of  Quebec 1690. In his diary, Winthrop gives an account of the difficulties that they encountered. Under the date of Aug. 4, 1690, is found the following:

“I consulted with the officers & twas concluded to march forwards, & then devided our provition, wch was about 35 cakes of bread for each souldr, besides pork, which was scarce eatable. At this post (Saratoga) i left Liut Tho. Avery with some souldrs to gaurd our provition to us wch was coming up the river”. (The Winthrop Papers, Massachusetts Hist. Col., Fifth Series, 8:314).

For an account of this expedition, see Avery’s “History of the United States and Its People,” vol. 3, pages 263, 264.

The latter part of his life he lived near the Mohegan Indian reservation. On the 22d of June, 1720, Capt. Thomas Avery and his brother Capt. James Avery were appointed interpreters for the Mohegans in a suit then pending before the governor and council. In 1721, Caezer, the sachem of the Mohegans, conveyed to Thomas Avery 160 acres of land in consideration of the kindness shown them by Captain Avery and his family. Upon this land Thomas Avery lived; the house he built there is still standing. [though there is another Thomas Avery house in the neighborhood built in 1845]. About ten years before his death, in consideration of love and good will and on account of the infirmities of age, he conveyed this land to his son, Abraham.

The last entry of accessions to the church of New London during Mr. Bradstreet’s ministry reads: “Sept. 10, 1682, Thomas Avery and wife were added to the Church.” They were among the organizers of the church of the North Parish, afterward called Montville. Their names appear first on the list of original covenanters. Before the North Parish could enjoy religious services, a long-standing quarrel had to be settled. October, 1721, the parish petitioned the general court for liberty to form a separate church.

Children of Hannah and Thomas:

i. Thomas Avery , Jr  b. 20 Apr 1679 in New London, New London, CT; d. 25 Nov 1712 in Montville, New London, CT; m. 12 Jun 1704 in Montville to Ann Shapley (b: 31 Aug 1685 in New London, New London County, CT – d. 17 Jun 1751 in Groton) Ann’s parents were Benjamin Shapley (b: Sep 1645 in Boston) and Mary Pickett (b: btw. 1652 and 1654 in New London) After Thomas died, Ann married 21 Nov 1712 in Groton to Jonathan Rosse and a third time after Jonathan died, 24 Jun 1729 to James Morgan.

ii. Samuel Avery b: 15 Nov 1680 in Groton, New London, CT; d. 25 Feb 1749/50 in Montville; m. 23 Jun 1702 in Groton to Elizabeth Ransford (b: ~1682 earliest record Boston – d. 9 Sep 1761 in Montville). Her parents were Jonathan Rainsford , Jr (b: 26 Jul 1661 in Boston) and Martha Raymond (b: ~1666 in New London)

In 1710 he bought land on north side of Saw-mill Brook in Mohegan section of Montville, CT. In his will dated Feb 22, 1749/50, New London, North Parish, Samuel Avery mentioned wife, Elizabeth; sons, John and Ephraim; daughters, Martha, Elizabeth, Alethea, Hannah, Anna and Mary; son Ransford deceased and his son Samuel who now lives with me.

iii. Hannah Avery b: 2 Oct 1682 in Groton; Burial: 12 Aug 1684 Groton

iv. Jonathan Avery , Sr, (twin) b: Nov-Dec 1683 in New London; m. 11 Apr 1703 in Groton to Elizabeth Bill (b: 1686 in Groton – ) Elizabeth’s parents were Philip Bill (b: 1658 in Ipswich, Mass.) and Elizabeth Lester (b. ~1660) Jonathan and Elizabeth had ten children born between 1703 and 1724.

v. William Avery , (twin) b: Nov-Dec 1683 in New London; d. 12 Aug 1684 in New London

vi. Ephriam Avery bapt. 18 Oct 1685 in Stonington; d. 5 Nov 1776; m. ~1708 in Stonington to Abigail Mason (b: 3 Feb 1688/89 in Stonington – d. 25 Aug 1717). Abigail’s parents were Daniel Mason and Rebecca Hobart. Her grandparents were our ancestors John MASON and Ann PECK.

vii. Hannah Avery b: 4 May 1686 in Stonington;  d. 9 Dec 1762 Stonington; buried in Thomas Miner Cemetery, Stonington; m.  26 Dec 1706 to her first cousin Thomas Miner (b. 20 Sep 1683 Stonington; d. 9 Apr 1739 Stonington; buried  12 Apr 1739   at Wequetequock Cemetery under a large carved slab. He left a will dated 9 Apr 1739). Thomas’ parents were Manassah Minor and Lydia Moore (See above)

viii. Mary Avery b: 1688 in Stonington; m. ~1708 to Benjamin Baker (b: ~1686 earliest record Fairfield, Fairfield, CT)

ix. Abraham Avery bapt. 6 Mar 1691/92 in Stonington

x. Elizabeth Avery b: 9 Dec 1691 in Norwich, New London County, CT;  m. Sylvester Baldwin (b. 4 Mar 1676/77 in Stonington)  His parents were John Baldwin Sr. (bapt. 28 Oct 1635 in Aston Clinton, Buckinghamshire, England – d.  19 Aug 1683 Stonington) and Rebecca Palmer (bapt. 7 Jul 1647 in Rehoboth, Mass. – d.  2 May 1713 Stonington)  His grandparents were Walter PALMER and Rebecca SHORT Sylvester first married Elizabeth’s cousin Lydia Miner (bapt. 17 Aug 1679; d. 21 Apr 1707; Stonington from complications with the birth of her son John Baldwin) Lydia’s parents were Manassah Minor and Lydia Moore.

Sources: –

  1. Thomas Minor Family History
  2. Thomas Miner Wikipedia Entry
  3. The Miner Branch of the Hubbards
  4. Biography of Walter Palmer“. Walter Palmer Society.
  5. Miner, John A. and Miner, Robert F. “The Curious Pedigree of Lt. Thomas Minor“. New England Historical and Genealogical Register Sources: New England Historic Genealogical Society. July 1984, pg 182-185.
  6. An Herauldical Essay Upon the Surname of Miner“. In possession of the Connecticut Historical Society. Hartford, Connecticut.
  7. Stonington Historical Society “In Search of the First Settlers” by Geraldine A. Coon (From Historical Footnotes, November 1999)
  11. – History of Quiambaug Cove
  12. History of New London county, Connecticut, with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men (1882) by Hurd, D. Hamilton
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Havey Canyon Full Moon Hike

5:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
Meet at the End of Rifle Range Road

Come enjoy the last full moon of spring rising over the East Bay Hills.  This five mile hike descends into the Canyon on the Rifle Range Road trail and then goes up the other side on the beautiful Havey Canyon trail which is shaded and full of native trees and shrubs.  The route connects with Nimitz Way at the top for stunning Bay views and a short side trip to a look out and old Nike Missile site.  Then back down Menzes trail in cattle country, back across Wildcat Creek Bridge and back up Rifle Range Road Trail.

Moonrise 6:53
Sunset 8:34

Havey Canyon Loop

Havey Canyon Loop

I counted an 1100 foot elevation gain so this is a moderately strenuous hike.  We go down one side of Wildcat canyon, up the other and back again.   Google counts the hike as 1 hour 45 minutes,  but that is a brisk pace.  I did it in two hours with time for pictures. We’ll plan on a leisurely three hours with plenty of time for pictures, snacks and a scenic detour.

Meet at the end of Rifle Range Road

Meet at the end of Rifle Range Road

Large coast live oaks, bay laurels, and a scattering of bigleaf maples and madrones grow on the park’s east-facing slopes. North-facing hillsides support some beautiful, nearly pure stands of bay laurel, fringed with coast live oak. Moist chaparral of coyote brush, poison oak, elderberry, snowberry, bracken fern, and blackberry grow in thickets high on the north-facing slopes.

Havey Canyon from across the way

Havey Canyon from across the way

The Havey Canyon  trail is shaded and full of native trees and shrubs.  If wet, it will be a very muddy walk with a steep creek to cross, but not an issue this time of year.

Rifle Range Trail

Rifle Range Trail

Dogs are allowed off leash under voice command in Wildcat Canyon, but we would prefer only leashed dogs for this hike.

Havey Canyon

Havey Canyon


Havey Canyon Trail

Rifle Range Trail


Havey Canyon Trail

Havey Canyon Trail


Madrone Limb Over Havey Canyon Trail

Madrone Limb Over Havey Canyon Trail


Havey Creek Trail Crossing

Havey Creek Trail Crossing


Havey Canyon Trail

Havey Canyon Trail


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2014 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 290,000 times in 2014. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 12 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Sundar Shadi

Come and see the Shadi Holiday Display.

Moeser Lane and Seaview Drive, El Cerrito.    Turn onto Moeser Lane from San Pablo Ave and travel east approximately one mile (through one stop light after you are on Moeser).

The display is lit from Saturday, December 13, 2014 from 5 pm to 10 pm through Friday, December 26.

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In June 1900, Sundar Lamba was born in Chak Shadi, a small village in Punjab, India. Both of his parents were born in Punjab, an extensive area in the northwest of India. Major rivers, the Indus, Ganges and the Iruande drained through vast regions, producing fertile soils for agriculture. Grains, sugar cane, Indian rubber and tobacco were some of the main products.

Sundar lived on a farm with his parents, five brothers and one sister. During a violent uprising, the family fled to Pakistan. One brother was killed. Another brother died in 1918, during World War 1.

As a boy, Sundar was sent to Moslem-Sikh schools. Because of the tropical-like climate and widespread agricultural possibilities, Sundar’s brother urged him to pursue a career in Pomology, the science of agriculture, growth and production. His intent was that Sundar would return to Punjab and spread his knowledge throughout the region. Sundar came to the University of California in Berkeley in 1921. In 1926 he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Pomology and in 1929 he received his Master of Science in Subtropical Horticulture. His return to Punjab did not go as he had expected and he soon came back to the United States.

Sundar met Dorothy Cotelle Clarke at UCB, where she was pursuing a career in Spanish. They married in 1934. Dorothy continued her studies and became a professor of Spanish at Berkeley.

Sundar and Dorothy had three daughters: Zilpha Tedforda Shadi (Mrs George Roland Paganelli), Ramona Rhea Shadi (Mrs William Walter Miller) and Verna Carol Shadi. They built and lived in their home on the Arlington in El Cerrito. The girls attended local schools and graduated from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Sundar Shadi became a citizen in 1948. Although he didn’t pursue his profession as a pomotologist, he did continue his interest in the science. He published research about subtropical horticulture and became an elected member of professional honor sciences: Phi Sigma Biological Society and the Society of Subtropical Horticulturists.

When he retired, he was able to spend more time with the thousands of flowers he loved at the family home at on the Arlington, in El Cerrito, and start what would turn into a virtuoso seasonal sculpture garden.

“It began with a single star in 1950, his daughter said, then it grew year by year. He loved doing it, and it gave him something to do in the fall when his flowers were not in bloom.” And while Shadi knew plants, he didn’t know how to make models of creatures and buildings, especially those that could withstand the rain and chill of an El Cerrito winter. He found that a wooden frame covered in chicken wire formed a good foundation. For the outer layer, he tried various materials, including plaster of Paris and papier-mâché. He even tried concrete for some sheep, Rich Bartke said, and eventually seemed to favor stucco.

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One missing element that surprises many people when they are told about it is that there is no manger, no nativity scene with baby Jesus.  Many people will swear to having seen one in the display, but there’s never been one. The absence of the nativity scene was a kind of ecumenical compromise.

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Time Lapse Setup 2014



Flickr Album



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Happy 2015!

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Richmond Meets New Orleans


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Clarion Alley


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12 2015

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November 22, 2014

November 22, 2014

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Costa Rica Naturaleza

There are other countries in the world that enjoy divinely inspired natural landscapes, but Costa Rica boasts a higher biodiversity than Europe and the United States combined. Its small size also means that travelling from cloud forest to coastline and from summit to savanna is quick, easy and a matter of course.

Pacuare  River

Pacuare River

The Pacuare River, or the Río Pacuare,and flows approximately 108 km to the Caribbean. It is a popular location for white water rafting, whitewater kayaking and riverboarding. The rainforests that surround the river are home to exotic animal species such as jaguars, monkeys, ocelots, and a very large number of birds.[1] Also it was considered one of the 5 nicest rivers to practice rafting.

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In January, the water wasn’t at its highest, but there were a fair number of rocks.

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This Lower Section of class III and IV whitewater is the part of the Pacuare River that is most famous. Flowing approximately 23 miles (and dropping approximately 1200 feet) from Finca La Cruz to the town of Siquirres. The run can be done in a single day trip or as long as a three day trip. The highlights of this section include the whitewater rapids and the waterfalls that flow into the river in the Huacas River Gorge. The rapids include Upper and Lower Huacas (class IV), Double Drop (class III), Cimarones (class IV) as well as multiple others.



The three-toed sloth is active during the day, unlike the nocturnal two-toed sloth, and so is seen more often. This sloth only eats leaves from trees and lianas, but may feed on fifty individual trees of up to thirty species, eating leaves of different ages. Sloths live, feed, mate, and reproduce near the upper levels of the forest canopy. They move to a new tree often enough to balance their diet, or about once every 1.5 days. Home ranges of different individuals may overlap considerably and females tend to be more social than males, but usually one adult (or female with young) will occupy a tree at any given time. Sloths may use different food sources depending upon what their mothers taught them to eat.

Though large for an arboreal mammal, the three-toed sloth must also be light for its size to live in the treetops, so it has reduced muscle mass. They also have an enormous gut capacity-nearly 30% of their body weight! The sloth’s diet of leaves is digested very slowly, so they need a large capacity. Sloths consume a significant amount of leaf material in a forest (about 2% of total annual leaf production in Panama). They have a slow metabolism, though, so they have thick fur to insulate them when their body temperature drops at night; their temperature peaks during the day when they bask in the sunlight.

About once a week, the sloth descends from its lofty living space, digs a small hole with its stubby tail, defecates and urinates in the hole, then covers it with leaves using its hind legs and return to its preferred heights. This ordeal lasts less than 30 minutes, but during this time the sloth is vulnerable to predators. While mortality of young sloths is high, individuals that survive to adulthood suffer low mortality rates; they are recorded to live as long as 9 to 11 years, and are thought to live as many as 20 to 30 in the wild.

Lazing in the Sun

Lazing in the Sun

In October 2013, surfer Adán Rivera was attacked by a crocodile on Tamarindo Beach, and he lived to tell the story. But that story has a different protagonist than you might expect – the reptile.

“The crocodile had as much a right to be there as I did, if not more,” Rivera said in an interview with The Tico Times a few days after the incident. He seemed miffed that there had been a question of whether authorities would remove the animal, and recounted the incident as if it were merely a temporary setback.

The attack took place on the morning of Oct. 13, when the experienced Spanish surfer was teaching his girlfriend, Natali Latite, how to ride a wave at the popular beach town in northwestern Guanacaste Province. In chest-deep water, Rivera propelled Latite into an oncoming swell and waited for her to swim back. That was when Latite noticed the crocodile and panicked.

“She yelled to me, and I turned and saw the animal,” Rivera said. “I began trying to sneak away without drawing attention, but the croc saw me, grabbed my finger and scratched my shoulder a bit. Then it swam off.”

That’s a very low-key version of the story The Tico Times heard from surf instructor Luis Sequeira, an apparent witness to the attack, who also claimed to have saved Rivera by scaring the crocodile away. But Rivera says he never saw or spoke with Sequeira. Two Swiss surfers whom Sequeira also claims to have saved have not responded to requests for an interview.

Regardless, an injured Rivera checked in to Clínica San Gabriel in Villa Real, where Dr. Gabriel Muñoz patched him up and told to stay out of the water to avoid infection. Rivera and Latite then switched hotels and stuck to land tours, waiting for Muñoz’s permission to surf again. That’s when Rivera became outspoken on the crocodile’s right to inhabit its own territory. The apparent crocodile aficionado also speculated as to why the animal might have attacked, downplaying the danger.

“It wasn’t that big, maybe [6.5 feet] long and not very heavy,” Rivera said. I think it was young and didn’t have much experience hunting. … It was just confused.”

Frog at the Pool

Frog at the Pool

Costa Rica lies squarely in the tropics, at a crossroads connecting North and South America. This “rich coast” country, is bordered to the east by the warm Caribbean, and the Atlantic Ocean, and to the west by the Pacific Ocean. In between these coasts, lie lowland jungles, mountain forest draped in mosses, alpine tundra, and dry forest–and all adorned with anurans (frogs and toads that is). Costa Rica hosts 133 species of frogs and toads placed into 8 families

In forests, ponds, swamps, and other ecosystems around the world, amphibians are dying at rates never before observed. The reasons are many: habitat destruction, pollution from pesticides, climate change, invasive species, and the emergence of a deadly and infectious fungal disease. More than 200 species have gone silent, while scientists estimate one third of the more than 6,500 known species are at risk of extinction. Species are disappearing even before they are described by scientists — a study published in Proceedings of the Nation Academy of Sciences last year found that 5 of the 30 species known to have gone extinct in Panama’s Omar Torrijos National Park since 1998 were unknown to science.

But the news gets worse. Chytridiomycosis — which is caused by a microscopic fungus called Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) that lives in water and soil — is spreading, metastasizing across Central and South America, Africa, and Australia. Amphibians are even experiencing rapid decline in habitats unmarred by the pathogen, pesticides, or direct human influence. Research in Costa Rica has recorded a 70 percent decline in amphibians over the past 35 years in pristine habitats, suggesting that climate shifts are taking a toll. – See more at:

Tortuguero National Park is situated in extreme northeast of the country, reached only by airplane or boat. The park has a large variety of biological diversity due to the existence within the reserve of eleven different habitats, including rainforest, mangrove forests, swamps, beaches, and lagoons. Located in a tropical climate, it is very humid, and receives up to 250 inches (6,400 mm) of rain a year.

Tortuguero National Park

Tortuguero National Park

The area protected by Tortuguero (turtle catcher) National Park was an archipelago of volcanic islands until alluvial sediments from the interior mountains, filled in the spaces and formed a network of marshy islands. Sand piled up where the river deposited land met the sea, and the turtle nesting beaches of Tortuguero formed. The exceptionally high rainfall, and rich environment where the freshwater meets the sea makes the beaches, canals, lagoons and wetlands of Tortuguero areas of exceptional biodiversity, and opportunity for nature lovers.

Moonlight Dreams

Moonlight Dreams

The main attraction of Tortuguero National Park is the turtles. Green Sea, leatherback, and Hawksbill turtles nest on the beaches here. Green Sea Turtles neared extinction due to hunting of the adults for meat (they are easy prey when they mass to nest) for turtle soup, and poaching of eggs for their supposed aphrodisiac qualities.

It’s possible to see stragglers laying eggs during the day, but the mass arrivals (arribadas) occur at night usually under a waning moon. You will need a guide to visit the beaches at night (no one is allowed on the beach unaccompanied after 6:00 pm). When you and your guide walk out onto the beach under the starlight to watch the turtles struggle up the beach, dig their nests and lay their eggs, think about their future.

If you are exceptionally lucky, you might chance to see an even more spectacular event, the newly hatched turtles race to the sea. There is some overlap of the nesting and hatching seasons for the different varieties of turtles. The eggs incubate in the warm sand for 7 to 10 weeks before the babies hatch, dig their way to the surface and make the long dark scuttle from the nest well above the high tide mark, across the beach to the surf.






The extensive network of freshwater creeks and lagoons behind the beaches of Tortuguero are home to seven species of river turtles, Spectacled Caiman, Southern River Otters, a number of crustaceans, and over 50 species of freshwater fish. If you take a trip on a tour boat, or paddle a canoe through the freshwater canals you are also likely to see Spider, Howler and Capuchin Monkeys and dozens of species of birds. If you are lucky you might spot an endangered West Indian Manatee.

White Faced Capuchin

White Faced Capuchin

Native to the forests of Central America and the extreme north-western portion of South America, the white-headed capuchin is important to rainforest ecology for its role in dispersing seeds and pollen.

Among the best known monkeys, the white-headed capuchin is recognized as the typical companion to the organ grinder. In recent years the species has become popular in North American media. It is a highly intelligent monkey and has been trained to assist paraplegic persons. It is a medium-sized monkey, weighing up to 3.9 kg (8.6 lb). It is mostly black, but with a pink face and white on much of the front part of the body, giving it its common name. It has a distinctive prehensile tail that is often carried coiled up and is used to help support the monkey when it is feeding beneath a branch.

In the wild, the white-headed capuchin is versatile, living in many different types of forest, and eating many different types of food, including fruit, other plant material, invertebrates, and small vertebrates. It lives in troops that can exceed 20 animals and include both males and females. It is noted for its tool use, including rubbing plants over its body in an apparent use of herbal medicine, and also using tools as weapons and for getting to food. It is a long-lived monkey, with a maximum recorded age of over 54 years.

Caiman in the Weeds

Caiman in the Weeds

2013 research from the journal Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry found that spectacled caimans (Caiman crocodilus) near banana plantations were significantly thinner, and had higher pesticide concentrations in their blood, than caimans in more remote locations. (Watch a video about banana farms in Costa Rica.)

“The animals are very, very thin—about 50 percent thinner than those away from the plantations,” said study co-author Peter Ross, an aquatic ecotoxicologist and associate professor at the University of Victoria in British Columbia.

It’s unclear whether the pesticides are directly toxic to the caimans or are impacting their health indirectly by diminishing the quality and abundance of their food supply.

Ross thinks the latter scenario is more likely given the moderate pesticide concentrations he and his colleagues found. Since all of the pesticides detected were insecticides, the chemicals could be knocking out the bottom of the food chain. This would affect the fish that eat the insects, resulting in caimans having to search farther for food and use more energy to try to find the few fish that remain.

That Fruit Looks Good

That Fruit Looks Good

Tortuguero Canopy and Zip Line

Tortuguero Canopy and Zip Line

Tucanett on Night Hike

Tucanett on Night Hike

The emerald toucanet (Aulacorhynchus prasinus) is a near-passerine bird occurring in mountainous regions from Mexico, through Central America to northern Venezuela and along the Andes as far south as central Bolivia.

The emerald toucanet is a generally common in humid forest and woodland, mainly at higher elevations. The 3–4 white eggs are laid in an unlined hole in a tree, usually an old woodpecker nest, but sometimes a natural cavity.

The emerald toucanet is a popular pet toucan. It is affectionate when hand-fed and loves to play and interact with its owner. Emerald toucanets are as quick to learn tricks as cockatoos. They are active and need a large cage for their size, including perches that they can hop back and forth on. They also require a high-fruit diet, without which they are susceptible to a disease of excessive iron storage that is similar to hemochromatosis in humans.

Rappelling in the Rainforest

Rappelling in the Rainforest

Monteverde iconic cloud forest was first settled by a community of Quakers who sought to protect their invaluable watershed. Home to such rare fauna as the resplendent quetzal, which is the Maya bird of paradise, Monteverde is partly responsible for Costa Rica’s international fame as an ecotourism hot spot where you can be inspired about the possibilities of organic farming and alternative energy sources.

Home for the day

Home for the day

Which Costa Rica Zipline is the best? Comparing 6 popular canopy tours in Arenal and Monteverde.

Esterillos Este

Esterillos Este

No crowds, chocolate colored beaches, and great surf best describe the beaches of Esterillos. You may never see another person as you stroll down the beaches where palms and almond trees line the forest edge and the clear blue waters invite you to go for a swim. This serene, contiguous stretch of beach is made up of Esterillos Oeste to the west and Esterillos Este to the east, appropriately, where you will find plenty of accommodations laced throughout

Ceversa y Vela

Ceversa y Vela

Manuel Antonio National Park

Manuel Antonio National Park

In 2011, Manuel Antonio was listed by Forbes among the world’s 12 most beautiful national parks. This park has one of the most impressive landscapes of the world and has several coves with many white sand beaches and lush foliage amidst great mountains and forests that reach the beaches. Additionally, it is located in the tropical forest. It has a large land and marine biodiversity with beautiful coral reefs.

Although Manuel Antonio National Park is Costa Rica’s smallest national park, the diversity of wildlife in its 6.83 km2 (3 sq mi) is unequaled with 109 species of mammals and 184 species of birds.



Locals will often point one lizard out as ‘iguana’, and another as ‘garrobo’, with complete assurance, though the untrained eye might see no obvious difference. So is this just a matter of two names for the same creature, or are they different species altogether?

In fact, they are distinct species, though both are called iguana in English, and both belong to the Iguanidae family. The one referred to as iguana in Spanish is the Green Iguana (Iguana iguana). As the name suggests, this full-scale lizard – up to 6ft long! – can sport a distinctive lime-green hue, though Costa Rica’s residents can also be seen in bright rusty tones as well, or graduated shades of green, blue, yellow and orange.

The garrobo, in contrast, includes two species: Ctenosaura similis and Ctenosaura quinquecarinata, known respectively as the Black Spinytail Iguana and the Club Tail Iguana.

They are distinguished by thick, scaly tails, and dark bands across the body, though their coloring can also vary from nearly black, to tan, peach, mossy green and grey-blue. The Costa Rican Black Spinytail holds the record of the world’s fastest lizard, clocking an impressive 21.5 mph, and is considerably larger (up to 4ft) than the Club Tail, which only grows to a foot in length.

Marino Ballena National Park

Marino Ballena National Park

Marino Ballena National Park is named after the Humpback Whales that migrate here each year from December to April to mate before returning to the frigid waters to the north. Playas Uvita and Ballena are relatively unvisited stretches of white and golden sand. Green marine iguanas (iguana verde) bask in the sun between dives to feed on the algae growing on the rocks and coral. Between the beaches are areas of mangrove habitat.

The largest coral reef on the Pacific Coast of Central America forms a crescent necklace with the three small islands known as Las Tres Hermanas (three sisters) and Ballena island as the center piece. The park stretches from the southern end of Playa Hermosa to the northern end of Playa Piñuela and about 9 miles (15 km) seaward.

My return ticket is April and it's cool

My return ticket is April and it’s cool

With perhaps the most consistent waves in Costa Rica, Playa Dominical is a haven for surfers. Swimming, however, can be dangerous due to the strong riptides that are found throughout the 2.5 mile (4 km) strip of beach.

The pleasant town of Dominical is relatively small but offers the beach-lover a wide variety of nearby beaches to choose from. Playa Dominicalito is just south of Dominical and is a great spot for beginner surfers and swimmers. At Punta Dominical, on the southern end of Playa Dominicalito, you’ll see the lush green land merge with the rich blue Ocean. It is a great spot to watch the ocean’s waves crash onto the rocky shore below and see a near perfect sunset almost year round. Other activities include treks to nearby waterfalls including the Nauyaca Waterfalls (7.5 mi from Dominical on Hwy 243), canopy tours, horseback riding, deep sea fishing, sea kayaking, scuba diving and snorkeling.

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Bay Trail – Berkeley Marina


One of two Sculptures on Berkeley Bike and Ped Bridge ove I80

One of two Sculptures on Berkeley Bike and Ped Bridge ove I80

The artwork, titled “Berkeley Big People”  by artist Scott Donahue was dedicated in 2008.   Visible from about a mile in either direction, the 30-foot-tall fiberglass sculpture is the largest and most expensive piece of public art ever commissioned in the city.

“It’s monumental in scale, in money, in visibility,” said Mary Ann Merker, the city’s civic arts coordinator and the project manager. “It’s our way of welcoming people to Berkeley. It’s exquisitely done – but if some people don’t like it, that’s OK, too.”

Caltrans officials are among those who have been less than thrilled with the project. The agency initially was concerned that the sculpture, standing over Aquatic Park, would distract drivers and might topple in the wind.

Berkeley Bike and Ped Bridge from Aquatic Park

Berkeley Bike and Ped Bridge from Aquatic Park


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