history-genealogy site

This is a site where I will discuss my family genealogy research and related history. When a blog deals with a particular family group, I will try to include it in the title so uninterested people can skip it without skimming it. It is my hope to get feedback on research methods, family members and historical context from other historians, genealogists, and researchers. (c) Barbara L. de Mare 2006, 2007

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Location: Englewood, New Jersey, United States

Thursday, November 09, 2006

SUSANNAH WILCOX'S DIVORCE FILE (from Mathew Smith CHAPEL)

Divorce papers of Susannah Chapel v. Mathew Smith Chapel, Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts held in Lenox, Berkshire County, 1827, contain various documents of genealogical importance and historical interest. The papers are:

Marriage certificate Mathew and Susannah (23 Feb 1816

Hillsdale February 23-1816

This is to certify that I have this day married Mathew Smith Chapel and Susannah Wilcocks

[signed] Edward Bagley Jus of the Peace

Complaint of Susan Wilcox (15 May 1827)

To the Honorable Justices of the Supreme Judicial Court to be holden at Lenox within and for the County of Berkshire on the tenth Tuesday next, after the first Tuesday of March now last past

Humbly says Susannah Chapel of Sandisfield in the County of Berkshire and Commonwealth of Massachusetts that on the twenty third day of February in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixteen at Hillsdale in the County of Columbia and State of New York she was lawfully married to Mathew Smith Chapel then and late of said Sandisfield, that from the time of said marriage your petitioner has performed towards the said Mathew Smith Chapel all the duties of the marriage covenant but that the said Mathew Smith Chapel wholly regardless of the marriage covenant and of his duty to your petitioner did on the twentieth day of April in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty six at Kinderhook in the said County of Columbia commit the [illegible—page torn] with some person not known to your petitioner and that the said Mathew Smith Chapel at said Kinderhook at divers times before the said twentieth day of said April did commit the crime of adultery with diverse other persons unknown to your petitioner.,

Wherefore your petitioner prays that your Honors would dissolve the bonds of matrimony between your petitioner and said Mathew Smith Chapel and make such further order in the premises as they shall judger proper and your petitioner as is duty bound will ever pray.—Dated at Lenox aforesaid the fifteenth day of May in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty seven.

[signed] Susannah Chapel

Court order for notice & trial (May 1827)

Berkshires ss: Sup. Jud. Court May Term AD 1827—

Upon the Libel aforesaid ordered that the libellant notify the said Mathew S. Chapel to appear before our Supreme Judicial Court to be holden at Lenox within and for said County on the second Tuesday of September next

By publishing a true & attested copy of the said Libel & this order thereon in the Berkshire Star printed at Stockbridge in said county three weeks successively the last publication to be thirty one days at least before the sitting of said Court that he may then & there show cause if any he have why the prayer thereof should not be granted.

[signed] Chas. Sedgwick Clerk

Affidavit of Abel Sage (29 August 1827)

[Abel Sage is the husband of Ruth Chapel, Mathew’s sister. Interesting that he is not testifying for his brother-in-law, but rather for the aggrieved wife of his wife’s brother. Doesn’t say much for Mathew!]

To the Honorable Justices of the Supreme Judicial Court next to be holden at Lenox within and for the County of Berkshire

Within is the deposition of Abel Sage certified and sealed up by me this 29th day of August AD 1827

[signed] Michael Butler Justice Peace

Columbia County Town of Stuyvesant

This may certify that I Abel Sage was present in the Town of Hillsdale in the County of Columbia when Mathew S. Chapel was married to Susannah Wilcox by Edward Bagley a Justice of the Peace of the County of Columbia -- (I believe it was in the month of February 1815) and further this deponent saith not. [signed] Abel Sage

Columbia County ss:

On the 29th day of August in the year of our Lord 1827 the aforesaid deponent was examined and [illegible word] and sworn agreeable to Law to the deposition aforesaid by him subscribed to here at the request of Susannah Chapel and to be used in an action or libel for a divorce now pending between her and Mathew S. Chapel before the Supreme Judicial Court next to be holden in Lenox within and for the County of Berkshire and Commonwealth of Massachusetts and adverse party was not present on living more than twenty miles from the place of Caption was not notified. The said deponent living more than thirty miles from the place of trial and out of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is the cause of taking this Deposition.

[signed] Michael Butler Justice of Peace

Berk S.J. Court Sept. 12 1827

Opened in court and filed

[illegible signature]

Certificate of marriage of Mathew and Catherine (30 August 1827)

This is to certify that on Sabbath April 23, 1826 I joined in the bonds of holy matrimony according to the form prescribed in thew Liturgy of the Reformed Dutch Church, Masthew S. Chapel to Mrs. Catherine Mosier. The ceremony was not performed without asking publicly the question usual in all cases where the parties are unknown “whether any person present knows any lawful reason why these persons should not be united” and private inquiry separated from the person who made the application. Positive assurances being made in the latter case that there were none, and silence prevailing in the former, U discharged what I deemed my official duty and married them.

Nassau August 30, 1827 [signed] James Romeyn, Pastor of

The Reformed Dutch Church of Nassau

Affidavit of John Bray and Agnes Bray (30 August 1827)

To the Hon. The Justices of the Supreme Judicial Court next to be holden at Lenox within and for the County of Berkshire

Within are the depositions of John Bray and Agnes Bray taken and certified and sealed up by me this thirtieth day of August 1827—

[signed] Lucas Hoes Justice Peace

State of New York

Columbia County, ss: Personally appeared John Bray of the Town of Kinderhook, County aforesaid, and Agnes Bray, wife of the said John, to me personally known who being severally duly sworn, depose and say—that some time about the twentieth or twenty third of April One Thousand Eight Hundred and Twenty Six, they the above deponents were present and saw Mathew S. Chapel (then of the town of Kinderhook aforesaid) married to Catherine Mosier by the Rev. James Roneyne, at the Village of Nassau in the County of Rensselaer, that subsequent to their marriage the said Mathew and Catherine lived together as man and wife and that they the said deponents have been informed and verily believe that since the marriage aforesaid the said Mathew S. Chapel & Catherine had a child born & which is now living—and further the said deponents say that the above mentioned Catherine Mosier is the daughter of John Devo of said Town of Kinderhook, and further say not.

(signed) John Bray

(signed) Agnes Bray

Columbia County ss:

On the thirtieth day of August 1827 the aforesaid deponents were severally examined and cautioned and Sworn agreeable to Law to the deposition aforesaid by then severally subscribed, taken at the request of Susan Chapel & to be used in an action or a libel for a divorce now pending between her and Mathew S. Chapel before the Judicial Court next to be holden at Lenox within and for the County of Berkshire & Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the adverse party was not present, he living more than twenty miles from the place of caption and was not notified—the aforesaid deponents living more than thirty miles from the place of trial and out of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the course of taking these depositions.

Lucas Hoes, Justice of the Peace

Berk S. J. Court

Sept 12 1827

Opened in Court and filed

[2 illegible signatures]

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