Jabez Huntington (colonist)

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Jabez Huntington (7 August 1719 – 5 October 1786) was a merchant and politician from Connecticut Colony.

Jabez Huntington graduated from Yale in 1741, engaged in the West India trade, and amassed a fortune. After 1759 he was frequently a member of the legislature, speaker for several years, and also a member of the council. At the beginning of the American Revolutionary War, he owned a large amount of shipping, and lost heavily by the capture of his vessels. He was among the most active on the committee of safety during the war; and in the September 1776 session of the Connecticut assembly he and David Wooster were appointed Major Generals. On the death of Wooster in 1777 Jabez was placed in charge of the entire Connecticut militia. His great exertions in the patriot cause and his heavy losses impaired his physical and mental powers, and he was thus compelled to resign his employments in 1779.[1]


Jabez was born on 7 Aug 1719 in Norwich, Connecticut to Joshua and Hannah (Perkins) Huntington.[2] He married first Elizabeth (20 Jan 1741 - 1 Jul 1745), the daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth (Tracy) Backus. They had two children, Jedediah in 1743, and Andrew who was born the month before his mother's death. He married his second wife, Hannah Williams (23 Jul 1726 - 25 Mar 1807) of Pomfret, Connecticut, on 10 Jul 1746. They had six children: Joshua, Hannah (died at age eight), Ebenezer, Elizabeth, Mary, and Zachariah.[3] Jabez died on 5 Oct 1786 at Norwich.[4]

Jabez's son Jedidiah Huntington also served in the American Revolution, and after it was over was collector of customs at New London, Connecticut, for many years.

Jabez's son, Andrew Huntington (born 21 June 1745; died 7 April 1824) engaged in commercial pursuits, and in 1795 was a manufacturer of paper at the falls of Norwich. He was judge of probate in his district in 1813. During the American Revolution he was a commissary of brigade.

Jabez's son Joshua Huntington (born in Norwich, 16 August 1751) began business with his father. After the Battle of Lexington, he commanded a company of 100 men of the town, and joined Putnam's brigade. Subsequently, he was ordered by the Continental Congress to build a frigate of 36 guns, which was constructed in the Thames at Gale's Ferry in 1777.

Jabez's son Ebenezer Huntington served in the American Revolution and then became a member of the United States House of Representatives from Connecticut.[3]


  1. ^ Huntington, Elijah B. (1863). Genealogical Memoir of the Huntington Family. pp. 107–108.
  2. ^ Huntington, p84
  3. ^ a b Huntington, pages=161-168
  4. ^ Huntington, p108