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Cowles Surname


"There was in Hartford and then in Farmington, Connecticut, in the early days of the colony, one John Cole, a farmer, by some thought to have been a brother of James, a cooper. To distinguish himself and his family from the family of James, he varied the spelling of his name. In the Farmington records the name is spelled Coles, Colles, and finally in 1682, Cowles. It is also found spelled Cowle, Coule and Coules, but the family generally adopted the spelling that is given at the head of this article.

"John Cowles, Farmington, Connecticut, 1652. About 1664 he removed to Hatfield, where he was admitted freeman 1666, and died 1675. His widow, Hannah, died in Hartford in 1684, where she made her will 1680." (p. 99) Reference Detail

"A manuscript genealogy of the Cole family, containing 203 names, advertised about 1910 as being part of the library of 'S. S. Purple', and bearing the notation 'Communicated to the N.E.H. Genealog. Soc.' By Samuel H. Parsons, Esq., Dec. 1845," appears to have been based upon the [circular chart, upper right] or a similar source. Only the descendants of John Cole, son of John Cole, the carpenter, are given." (p. 1, Vol 1) Reference Detail
COWLES. The name is also written Cowl, Coul, Cowle, Coule, Coules, Coales, Coale, Cole, Colles, and originated at the battle of Hastings, 1066; the founder having worn a hood, or cowl, at this battle. (I) John Cowles, born in England about 1598, came to Hartford 1635-39; Farmington, 1640; Hadley, Massachusetts, 1659; Hatfield, 1660, where he died 1675; member of General Court of Connecticut; townsman, and one of the "seven pillars" of the church in Farmington. He married Hanna -- -- --, who died at Hartford 1683. Their wills are on file at Northampton and Hartford. Had seven children. (II) Samuel Cowles, born 1639, died April 17, 1691, Farmington. In 1661 he married Abigail Stanley, daughter of Timothy Stanley. Had 11 children. (III) Isaac (1) Cowles, born March 23, 1675, died Feb. 7,1756, was ancestor of the Farmington Cowleses; representative to the General Court, 1726; ensign, 1717; lieutenant, 1723; captain of train-band, 1731. He was married three times, first to Mary Andrews -- Jan. 2, 1696 -- five children; second to Sarah Andrews, 1709 -- one child; then to Elizabeth Smith, 1716 -- six children. . Mary Andrews, daughter of Daniel Andrews, died July 19,1708. Her son, Isaac (2), was born 1702. (IV) Isaac (2) Cowles, born April 21, 1702, died Sept. 29, 1737. He died in Southington, and was a wealthy land owner; ensign, 1736. He was married twice, first Jan. 2, 1728-29, to Ruth North; second Nov. 11,1736, to Jerusha -- -- --, who died Nov. 4,1752. Children: Mary, 1729; Ruth, 1731, deceased; Judah, 1734; Isaac, baptized Jan., 1736 (child of Ruth North, who died probably Jan., 1736). Child of Jerusha Cowles was Ruth (2), born 1737, a few days after the death of her father. (V) Ruth Cowles, born Oct. 8,1737, married April 5,1759, Captain Samuel Upson [see]. Children: Mary, Archibald, Isaac, Obed, Harvey, Samuel, Ruth, Jerusha, Manly, Betsy. (VI) Harvey Upson (Wolcott), captain and deacon, married Rachel Wheeler [see]. (VII) Samuel Wheeler Upson married Sally M. Stevens [see]. (VIII) Emeline M. Upson married Franklin Downes [see]. (IX) Florence E. Downes married Adrian J. Muzzy [see]. (X) Adrienne Florence Muzzy, born 1885. Reference Detail

[Mentioned as being from: Family Tree of Captain C. D. Cowles, U. S. A.; Histories and Records of Southington and Wolcott.]


"The oldest known genealogical record of any branch of the Cowles family in America entitled 'Genealogy of the Descendants of John Cole of Connecticut', is by an anonymous author and consists of a circular chart containing the following inscription: 'John Cole came from England, settled in Hartford, one of the original proprietors of Farmington, removed to & died in Hatfield about 1676. His wife, Hannah, died in Hartford, 1683, at her son's, Caleb Standley, children in next circle.' In the next circle it is stated that 'Samuel lived south of the meeting house, a man of energy & enterprise, spelled his name Cowles, m. Abigail Standley, 1660'. The name of their other son John is omitted and those of John and Nathaniel, sons of John Cole, the carpenter, of Hartford are substituted. The names of the dauhters are correct. The latest date on the chart is 1839." (p. 1, Vol. 1) Reference Detail

"The third oldest genealogical record, also by an anonymous compiler, consists of a manuscript genealogy and family tree of the descendants of John Cowles of Farmington and Hatfield, compiled about 1845....

"The preface reads as follows:

"Cowles. The name was originally spelled Cole on the Farmington Records and is also somtimes spelled Coale, Coales, Cowls, and Cowles. Samuel and his descendants always spelled it Cowles but the descendants of John, Jr., have usually spelled it Cowls but now (1845) insert the 'e'. John Cole came from the west of England and probably stopped in Hartford, though he did not become a proprietor. He was one of the original proprietors and settlers of Farmington and one of the seven pillars of the original church formed in 1652. His original house-lot was on the corner at the north end of the street, which he exchanged for the next lot south of the meeting-house yard, where he first built and where his descendants continued to reside for 150 years. He represented Farmington in the General Court three sessions is 1653 & 4. He removed to Hadley, afterwards called Hatfield, on the west side of the river and took his son John with him, where he died in 1675. His wife, Hannah, died in Hartford in 1683 at the residence of her daughter, Hannah, wife of Caleb Standley." (p. 2, Vol 1) Reference Detail