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From: Faith Bidwell Heath <>
Subject: Richard Bidwell of CT
Date: Wed, 11 Oct 2000 10:00:19 EDT


Dear Michelle Maxey:

When the "Bidwell Family History, 1587-1982" was published in 1983, the
following information on Richard Bidwell, his daughter Hannah, and the
ENO connection was thought to be accurate:

Richard Bidwell b. 1587 d. 25 Dec. 1647. He was an early settler at
Windsor, CT, and is called "Goodman Bidwell" in some records. The
identity of his wife is unknown. Children:
John Bidwell b. 1620 d. 1687
Hannah Bidwell b. 22 Oct. 1634 d. 7 Oct. 1679
Joseph Bidwell d. 1672
Samuel Bidwell
Richard Bidwell

Hannah Bidwell b. 22 Oct. 1634. d. 7 Oct. 1679 m. 18 Aug. 1648
James Eno. He d. 11 June 1682. They lived at Windsor, CT. Hannah
was b. at Windsor, CT. Children:
Sarah Eno b. 15 June 1649
James Eno b. 30 Oct. 1651 d. 16 July 1714
John Eno b. 2 Dec. 1654

In large part this data came from Edwin M. Bidwell: "Genealogy of the
First Seven Generations of the Bidwell Family," (1984).

>From "Hale, House and Related Families," by Donald Lines Jacobus and
Edgar Francis Waterman (1978): "John Bidwell, founder of the Hartford
family, was adult by 1640 when he had lands recorded, and it is doubtful
whether his birth can be placed much later than 1615. Edwin M. Bidwell,
compiler of the "Genealogy," published in 1884, supposed him to be the
son of a Richard Bidwell of Windsor, and brother of a younger Richard of
Windsor, of Anna (Hannah) wife of James Eno of Windsor, and of an early
Bidwell who settled at Marshfield, MA. These are assumptions and the
present compiler finds little to sustain them.

"There was a Richard Bidwell in Windsor who was buried 25 Dec. 1647; he
had a daughter Hannah born there in 1644...or 22 Oct. 1634 (under ENO)
according to Stiles in his "History of Wethersfield," the earlier date
evidently being given under the Eno family to make possible the
conclusion of Stiles...that James Eno's wife Anna Bidwell, to whom he was
married 18 Aug. 1648, was identical with the Hannah, daughter of Richard
Bidwell, born by Windsor records in 1644. By setting the date back a
decade, she was made nearly fourteen years old when this marriage
occurred...Unfortunately no births...of 1634 were recorded in
Windsor...being earlier than the organization of town government there.

"John and Richard Bidwell may have been brothers. Richard had one child,
Hannah, born at Windsor in 1644. He was buried 25 Dec. 1647, and it was
probably his widow, Anna (or Hannah) who married 18 Aug. 1648 James
Eno... She was the mother of Eno's three children, and he married twice
thereafter, dying 1 July 1682..."

Clarence Almon Torrey's "New England Marriages Prior to 1700" (bef. 1962)
"lists the 37,000 couples who resided in colonial New England during its
first eight decades." (from the introduction to Torrey's book by Gary
Boyd Roberts)

Torrey's listing for Richard Bidwell is as follows:
BIDWELL, Richard (--1647) & Anna _____. m./2 James ENO 1648; b.
1644, b. 1620?; Windsor, CT.

Interpreted, this means that Richard's birthdate is unknown; Anna's
maiden name is unknown; that she and Richard had a known child b. 1644 in
Windsor; the earlier date of 1620 with ? indicates that Richard may have
had a child born at that time.

The suppositions are: Richard's first wife, mother of John of Hartford,
died in England, and Richard married (2) Anna _____ in England, bringing
her with him and his son, John, and any other children, either his or
theirs. If John's mother had died in America, her death and Richard's
subsequent second marriage would have been recorded.

As for the Hannah Bidwell b. 1644 to Richard and Anna/Hannah, no marriage
is recorded for her, indicating that she either died young, or never
married. The next known marriage of any Hannah Bidwell is not recorded
until 1706. She was daughter of John Bidwell Jr., and granddaughter of
Richard. and Anna.

There are other persons, surname BIDWELL, in New England whose sparse
known facts indicate that they were the right age to be children of
Richard and Anna/Hannah. But there are no documented links to them at
this time.

As with any genealogical research, this data remains "a work in
progress." But for now, it would seem that the Hannah Bidwell who
married James Eno was the widow of Richard Bidwell. I hope this helps.

Yours truly,

Faith B. Heath, Secretary, Bidwell Family Association

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