Robert Day of Hartford

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Robert Day

Birthplace: Ipswich, Suffolk, England
Death: Died in Hartford, Hartford, Connecticut
Immediate Family:

Husband of Editha Stebbins
Father of Thomas Day; Sarah Gunn Kellogg (Day); Mary Coleman and John Day

Occupation: Brickmaker and Mason
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Robert Day of Hartford

Biographical Summary #1:

Robert Day came in the "Elizabeth," from Ipswich, Co. Suffolk, to Boston, in April, 1634, aged 30, with wife, Mary, aged 28; freeman, Massachusetts, May 6, 1635. An original proprietor at Hartford; his home-lot in 1639 was on the road from Centinel Hill to the North Meadow, near the junction of the streets now Main and Village streets. He was chosen viewer of chimneys and ladders, 1643. His first wife is supposed to have died before his removal to Hartford, and he married (2) Editha, sister of Deacon Edward Stebbins. He died in 1648; will dated May 20; inventory October 14, £142. 13. 6. His widow, Editha, married (2) John Maynard, of Hartford; (3) 1658, Elizur Holyoke, of Springfield


i. Thomas, removed to Springfield, 1658; married October 27, 1659, Sarah, daughter of Lieutenant Thomas Cooper; freeman, 1668; died December 27, 1711.

ii. John, born in Hartford; received the property of his stepfather, John Maynard, by his will; married Sarah, daughter of Thomas Butler, of Hartford; in the distribution of Thomas Butler's estate, 1697, John Day's wife was one of the heirs; freeman, May, 1680; died in Hartford about 1730.

iii. Sarah; married (1) November 17, 1658, Nathaniel Gunn, of Hartford; (2) November 24, 1664, Samuel Kellogg, of Hatfield, and was killed with her son, Joseph, by the Indians, September 19, 1677.

iv. Mary, born about, 1641; married (1.) October 28, 1659, Samuel Ely, of Springfield; (2) April 12, 1694. Thomas Stebbins, of Springfield; (3) December 11, 1696, Deacon John Coleman, of Hatfield; died October 17, 1720, aged 84. The Honorable Thomas Day, Secretary of State, and president of the Connecticut Historical Society, was a descendant of Thomas, of Springfield, as also was the late Honorable Calvin Day.

SOURCE: James Hammond Trumbull, editor, The memorial history of Hartford County, Connecticut, 1633-1884, Volume 1 (Boston, Massachusetts: Edward L. Osgood, 1886), pages 236-237. Retrieved: 3 May 2011 from Google Books

Biographical Summary #2:

Robert Day (1604 - 1648) was born in 1604. He immigrated to Boston from England in 1634 at age 30 with his wife Mary, age 28. He sailed on the Elizabeth out of Ipswich, England and first settled in Newtown, now known as Cambridge, MA. He wife died shortly after they arrived. Robert was made a freeman in Cambridge on May 6, 1635. He was granted three acres in Westfield, Cambridge on August 4, 1634 and in the August 20, 1635 division of meadow, he was a proportional share of ½. In the Cambridge land inventory on October 10, 1635, he held two parcels: in Westend one house with backside about two acres and in Westend Field about three acres. In the Feb. 8, 1635/36 list of those “who have houses in town” he was credited with one house in Westend.

By 1639 he had moved to Hartford, CT as one of the first settlers. He may have gone with the original 100 settlers, led by Rev. Hooker into the wilderness in 1636. By 1636 he had married Edith Stebbins, born 1613 in Woodhaven, Essex, England, daughter of Deacon Edward Stebbins. In the Hartford land inventory of February 1639/40, "Rob[ert] Day" held ten parcels: "one parcel on which his dwelling house now standeth with outhouses, yards & gardens ... containing by estimation two acres"; one acre one rood in the Neck of Land; one rood three perches in the Little Meadow; one acre eight perches "on the east side of the Great River"; three roods eighteen perches in the North Meadow, of which two roods twenty-eight perches is meadow and thirty perches is swamp; five acres three roods and eight perches in the North Meadow, of which four acres four perches is meadow and one acre three roods is swamp; three acres three roods and twenty perches in the Cowpasture; seven acres three roods in the Little Oxpasture; one rood thirty-one perches in the Neck of Land; and two acres two roods nineteen perches in the Neck of Land.” Edward Stebbins, Edith’s brother also held land in Hartford. Robert died in 1648, between May 20 and Oct. 14, at age 44, his will, dated, May 20, 1648 is seen on a following page. His estate was valued £142, £71 of this was real estate.

Edith Stebbins Day then married Dr. John Maynard from Hartford and they had no children before he died. In his will of 23 January 1657/8, "John Maynard of Hartford" bequeathed to "my wife Edetha my dwelling house with all my other houses, as also all other land lying and being in Hartford, during her life; and after her decease unto John Day, the youngest son of my wife, unto him and his heirs forever"; "Thomas Day, the eldest son, shall receive £20 sterling out of my estate provided he carry well and dutifully to his mother"; to "Sarah and Mary Day, my wife's daughters, £20 sterling to each of them"; to "the Rev. Mr. Stone, teacher of the Church of Hartford, 40s."; "my wife sole executrix"; "Mr. John Talcott Senior and my brother Mr. Edward Stebbing and Richard Goodman" overseers.”

She then married Elizur Holyoke of Springfield, MA, grandfather of President Edward Holyoke of Harvard University. She moved to Springfield with some of her children. Elizur died there in Feb. 6, 1676. She died in Springfield on Oct. 25, 1688. Her nephews were on the Springfield Board of Selection: Joseph Stebbins (1700, 1705, 1712, 1716, 1717, 1721) and Edward Stebbins (1700, 1703, 1704, 1708, 1710). Robert Day and Edith had four children:


  1. Thomas (male ancestor of Springfield branch), born about 1636. He married Sarah Cooper on Oct. 27, 1659. She was the daughter of Thomas Cooper who emigrated in 1635. They had ten children: Thomas (1662- ), Sarah (1664-), Mary (1666), John (1669-1670), Samuel (1671-), John (1673-), Ebenezer (1676), Ebenezer (1677-), Jonathan (1680-), Abigail (1703-1747).
  2. Sarah, born about 1638, married Nathaniel Gunn of Hartford on Nov. 17, 1658. After he died, she married Samuel Kellogg of Hartford on Nov. 24, 1664. She was killed along with her son Joseph by the local tribe in Sept. 19, 1677.
  3. Mary, born about 1640, married Samuel Ely of Springfield on Oct. 28, 1659. He was the son of Nathaniel Ely of Cambridge and probably neighbor of Robert Day there. Then, she married Thomas Stebbins on April 12, 1694. He was the son of Thomas Stebbins. Next, married Deacon John Coleman of Hatfield on Dec. 11, 1696. She died in Hatfield in 1725.
  4. John, born about 1643 (male ancestor of Hartford branch). By 1670 he had married Mary Gaylord. Then by 1690 he married Sarah Butler.

The Day family comes from Wales. George Day writes in 1848:

“In a book of Heraldry, containing the arms of William Day, B.D., Provost of Eton College and dean of Winsor, confirmed by William Flower, Norroy, on the 21st of October, 1582, in the twenty-fourth year of Queen Elizabeth, he is said to be ‘descended from the Dees of Wales, being the younger son of Nicholas Day, the son of John Dee (called by the English Daye) He was son of Morgan Dee, younger brother of Richard Dee, Welshman.’ Dee, signifying, it is said, dark or dingy, is the name of a small river in Wales, and was probably applied to some ancestor of the family, dwelling upon its banks, in order to distinguish him from others… This name still prevails in Wales.”

George adds that there were eight people named Day within the first thirty years of the settlement of New England. Robert 1634, first in Cambridge MA, then Hartford; Robert, Ipswich MA 1635; Nathaniel, Ipswich, MA 1637; Stephen, Cambridge, 1639, first printer in the colonies; Wentworth, Boston, 1640; Ralph, Denham, 1645; Matthew, Cambridge, 1645, Steward of Harvard College; Anthony, Gloucester, 1645.

SOURCE: Unknown

Biographical Summary #3:

From Savage's New England Register, Volume #2: ROBERT, Cambridge, came in the Elizabeth 1634, from Ipswich, aged 30, with w. Mary 28, freem. 6 May 1636, went to Hartford, perhaps with Hooker in 1636, or very soon after, had sev. lots among first proprs. His first w. d. prob. bef. rem. a.nd the mo. of his ch. was Edatha, sis. of vol. 2, p. 27 deac. Edward Stebbins. She is nam. in his will, 20 May 1648, wh. is print. in Trumbull's Col. Rec. of Conn. I. 487; but tho. childr. are provid. for, we find not names nor number. They were Thomas; Sarah, wh. m. Sept. 1658, Nathaniel Gunn of Hartford, and next, 24 Nov. 1664, Samuel Kellogg of Hatfield, and was k. with her s. Joseph, 19 Sept. 1677, by the Ind.; Mary, wh. m. 28 Oct. 1659, Samuel Ely of Springfield, and next, 12 Apr. 1694, Thomas Stebbins, and next, 11 Dec. 1696, deac. John Coleman of Hatfield, where she d. 1725; and John, bef. ment. His wid. m. John Maynard of Hartford, wh. d. without ch. leav. to the ch. of D. "provided they carry themselves well towards" their mo. some decent est. and next m. in 1657 or 8, Elizur Holyoke of Springfield wh. she surv. by twelve yrs. and d. 24 Oct. 1688. Of descend. of this Robert, in the male line, full acco. is print. by Rev. George E. Day of Northampton.

SOURCE: A Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, Before 1692; Volume 2; James Savage. Retrieved from

Biographical Summary #4:

I. Robert Day, with his wife Mary (aged twenty-eight), came from Ipswich in England to Boston in New England, in the bark Elizabeth, in April, 1634. He was at that time thirty years old. On his arrival in this country he settled in Newtown (now Cambridge), and was made freeman there on May 6, 1635. His first wife is supposed to have died about this time, and childless. He was one of the Original Proprietors of Hartford, Conn., and is thought to have been in the company of one hundred which came through the wilderness with the Rev. Mr. Thomas Hooker in 1636. He married (2) Editha Stebbins (sister of Deacon Edward Stebbins, who also was one of the Original Proprietors) of Hartford, and died in Hartford between May and October of 1648.

Children :

20. Thomas, m. (Oct. 27, 1659) Sarah Cooper; d. Dec.



Listed as a passenger on "The Elizabeth"



Day, Robert, Hartford. Invt. £142-13-06. Taken 14 October, 1648, by John Tailecoate, Gregory Wilterton and Edward Stebbing. Will dated 20 May, 1648.

The Will of Robert Day, hee being sick and weake, yet in perfect memory, doth order and dispose of his Estate to his wife and Children, in the manner following:

I give unto my beloued wife, Edatha Day, my now dwelling house and Howsing thereto adjoyning, hqmselott. Also all my Land whereof I stand possessed, or that of Right doth belong to mee, lying in Hartford, during the tearme of her natural life; And at the end of her life, my Will is that the sd. house and Land shall bee for the vse of my Children that then shall bee liuing, to be divided in an equall proportion: my Will also is that all my howshold Stuff, and Cattle and other moueable Goods, shall bee my wiue's, to bring vp my Children: And in case my wife should be married to another man, then my survivors of my Will shall haue power, if they thinke good, to take security for the bringing vp of the Children, and for soe much Estate as shall bee thought meete by them; and to this my last Will and Testament I make my wife Executrix, and I doe desire my Deare Brethren Mr. Tailecoate, W1lterton and Stebbing to take Care of and Assist my wife in the ordering herselfe and my Children; and I give them power to doe what in their judgements may be for the Best, to bring vp my Children and dispose of them, and that I leave for their Good. And to this my Will I sett to my hand the day above written.

Witness: Edward Stebbing, Robert Day. Walter Gaylord.

SOURCE: "A Digest of the Early Connecticut Probate Records: Hartford district, 1635-1700"

Robert Day who was born on 31 July 1604 in Kilburn, Yorkshire, England and who came to this country in Apr., 1634 on the ship "Elizabeth". Robert was made a freeman in 1635. In about 1637 he became an original settler of Hartford, Conn. Robert Day's grandson, John Day, moved his family to Colchester, CT. between June, 1701 and Sept., 1702 and remained in that town.

_______________________________________________________________________________ Robert Day - 1604-1648

           from Colonial Families of America Volume 1
    Robert Day, founder of this branch of the Day family in America ,was born in England

about 1604. He sailed for the new world in the ship Elizabeth, leaving from Ipswich, County Suffolk, England, in April 1604. He was accompanied by his wife Mary who was twenty-eight years old. They touched at Boston, but settled in Cambridge. There he was made freeman May 6, 1635, which proves his connection in full standing wi th the local church.

    A few years later Robert moved to Hartford, Connecticut, where he became one of the

original proprietors. He was chosen in 1643 viewer of chimneys and ladders at Hartford. His name is among the hundred carved on the brownstone monument in Center Church Cemetery at Hartford, which was erected in 1837 by the Ancient Burying Ground Association of Hartford in memory of the first settlers. Robert Day's house lot in 1639 was on the road from Centinel Hill to the North Meadow near the present junction of Main and Village streets. The location is now a wedge-shaped public park.

    Died in 1648 at Hartford. He was interred in the Old Burying Ground, but time has

destroyed his tombstone. His will, dated May 20, 1648, was most meticulously inventoried, enumerating every item of his possession, even pots and pans. It left all to his wife.

Issue: all by second wife, Editha Stebbins, four children, among them a son John Day.

    Married, first, in England-- Mary _____________.
    Married, second at Hartford, Editha Stebbins, a sister of Deacon Edward Stebbins. While

the ancestry of both Editha Stebbins and her brother, Deacon Edward Stebbins, remains shrouded in mystery, the following arms are those claimed by the descendants of Deacon Edward Stebbins, according to Crozier: Argent a griffin segreant azure langued and membered gules between three cross crosslets.

    Editha Stebbins married as her second husband, Deacon John Maynard of Hartford, who

died shortly after, leaving all his property to his wife and the Day children. She married, third, Elizur Holyoke, of Springfield, Massachusetts, grandfather of Edward Holyoke, eleventh president of Harvard College.

Note: Recent research has found Editha Stebbins and Deacon Edward Stebbins to be the children of William Stebbins or Stebbing and Mary ______. William was the son of William Stebbing. They were from Black Notley, Essex, England.

Mary Gaylerd, wife of John Day who was the son of Robert Day and Editha Stebbins, is the daughter of Walter Gaylord and Mary Stebbing, daughter of Deacon Edward Stebbins and Frances Tough. Therefore, Mary Stebbins' brother Deacon Edward Stebbins is also one of our grandfathers.

Note: There is also strong evidence that Robert Day, born about 1604, was born in South Kirkby, Yorkshire, England the son of Robert Day and Ann Kirby. This line can be traced back into Wales.

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Robert Day of Hartford's Timeline

July 31, 1604
Ipswich, Suffolk, England
July 31, 1604
Kilburn, York, England
Age 30
Hartford, Connecticut
April 30, 1637
Age 32
Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, United States
Age 33
Hartford, CT
October 28, 1641
Age 37
Hartford, (Present Hartford County), Connecticut Colony
Age 38
Hartford, Connecticut
October 16, 1648
Age 44
Hartford, Hartford, Connecticut
October 16, 1648
Age 44
Hartford, Hartford, Connecticut
October 9, 1888
Age 44