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Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1128717089000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Wright, Wasson
Update on Asahel Research:

Asahel Wright was born 4 Aug. 1778. He married as a second wife, Eunice Wasson on 8 Mar. 1810 in Fairfield, Franklin, VT. He died 4 Oct. 1829 in Louisville, NY. The U.S. Census has him in Fairfield, VT in 1800, in Massena, NY in 1810 and in Louisville, NY in 1820. Louisville, NY was part on Massena, NY in 1810. His wife, Eunice, is listed in the 1830 census for Louisville, NY. 1810 census Massena, NY lists Abner (born ca. 1780) in addition to Asahel. Some records list Asahel’s father as Abner.

The 1800 census of Fairfield, VT lists Abner Wright and Dorastus Wright in addition to Asahel. The SAR Revolutionary War Graves Register lists an Abner Wright born 1747, died 1835, buried in North Fairfield Cemetery, Fairfield, VT and his wife’s name was Eunice. Fairfield was part of Weybridge, VT at the time of the 1790 census which lists Abner and Abel Wright, both of who are listed in the Proprietors’ records for Weybridge.
Weybridge records list Abner’s first wife as Elizabeth, who died 26 Aug. 1791, the same month their son, Lamentation, was born. A Lamentation Wright is listed in the 1840 and 1850 censuses for Louisville, NY. According to Weybridge records Abner married Eunice Page on 5 Feb. 1792.
According to New Marlborough, MA records, an Abner Wright, son of Caleb and Sarah, married Elizabeth Pickett (or Pickets) in New Marlborough on 16 May 1768. They had a son, Dorastus Wright, born 3 Dec. 1769 in Sandisfield, MA. This Abner Wright was born in 1748 in Northampton, MA.

Thus, there is a good chance that Abner Wright and Elizabeth Picket are the parents of Asahel Wright, but more work needs to be done.

Does anyone have information to prove or disprove this?

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1264462677000
Classification: Query

I'd just like to confirm your research when you stated "According to New Marlborough, MA records, an Abner Wright, son of Caleb and Sarah, married Elizabeth Pickett (or Pickets) in New Marlborough on 16 May 1768." I have been unable to locate ANY other resource tying Abner to Caleb and Sarah. All the documents I've located only list their children as Caleb, Jr. and Ebenezer.

I am a descendant of Abner... he's a tough nut to crack!


Martinsburg, WV

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1264550762000
Classification: Query

I also have only Caleb Jr (1746 -1787) and Ebenezer (1752 - 1832) as children of Caleb (1723 - 1815) and Sarah Strong, but between Caleb Jr. and Ebenezer there was a lot of moving around between Northampton and New Marlborough and time to have at least one more that might not have been recorded anywhere. I have never seen anything in the general histories of the Berkshire Co. area that tie them together with an Abner Wright, but these folks ended up all over the map. Caleb Sr. may have been in Ontario Co, NY. & son Caleb Jr. ended up in Washington Co. NY while son Ebenezer ended up in Waybridge, VT. Lots of room for doubt here because there are lots of opportunities for lost/unrecorded events in this family's history.

I'll keep an eye out for Abner in my fumbling around.

Best Regards,
Mike Wright

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1264774412000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Wright
What was the occupations of your Wright's please?
Any carpenters/joiners?
My brick wall is Ernestus Wright born Franklin Co. VT 20 March 1822. Father born MASS? according to census records.
He was a carpenter/jointer by trade in 1850, family info claims he was from a line of carpenters who orriginated from Wales.
Any info would be greatly appreciated.

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1264803271000
Classification: Query
To jjahn,

The Wrights of New Marlborough, MA (particularly Caleb) who we were discussing in this thread as possible ancestors/kin to Abner and Asahel Wright were all believed to be from the Kelvedon Hatch, Co. Essex Wright family group, descended from Deacon Samuel Wright of Springfield and Northampton, MA (1606? - 1665). Thus, it is very unlikely that they were related to your ancestor if he really was from a Welsh family. Having said that, I would suggest that you don't get too tied to a Welsh origin. Ernestus being from a MA late 18th century family fits more with an English or Scottish origin rather than Welsh, but who knows. I don't currently have anything on him in my Wright database, but I will put him in my watch list. Sorry.

More to the point of your question about trade/occupation, I would have to caution that using occupational status, particularly as a carpenter, as a linkage mechanism for the WRIGHT surname is fraught with all sorts of danger. For one thing, the probability is very high that any given Wright male you pick out of the time period 1630 to 1850 would, at some time in his life, be identified with some skill in the building trades, especially as carpenter, joiner, cordwainer, etc. The English/Welsh/Scottish/Irish ancestors of these New World men were given the surname WRIGHT precisely because they had a natural inclination to become very skilled at working with wood to build things. They all possessed some common inherited traits such as superior spatial vision, excellent eye-hand coordination, stout constitutions and no allergies to wood. Passing on the trade skills of the father to their sons is probably one of the most instinctive of the higher human behaviors. So, down through the centuries, the skill sets tended to remain with the surname right along with the inherited genetic predispositions for the work. Even if a particular son was not very proficient at the wood working skills of his father, in the Medieval period, his name carried him forward into some part of the wood working trade by the expectations of his family and neighbors that he would live up to his name eventually, as it was "in his blood." More often than not even if sons strayed from the profession of their father, they would come back to it in hard times or in later years.

By example, I had reason to research a Wright family in 19th century England recently in which the father began in 1840 to teach his young son how to build houses. Apparently the son did not take to the work or his father (who knows which), but in any case ends up apprenticed to a cobbler and for almost 12 years he earns his living making boots while his wife aids in the business as a "glover", stitching leather gloves together out of pre-cut forms.

Fully mechanized boot making and glove making finally put them out of business in the late 1860's and he tried for a brief time to become a priest, earning a living by being a cantor and singing in church. Then at nearly 40 years old he got a job in a millwork factory painting window and door frames and ceiling moldings. By 1890 he just gives in and in the census lists himself as an unemployed carpenter; right back where his father left off with him 50 years before. When we get old we tend to gravitate to those activities that come to us most easily and instinctively.

Most of these men could stray from the mold a bit, but they couldn't entirely deny the innate skills for building things they held in common. If you were not something of a Jack of all Trades, you didn't make much of a dent in pioneering efforts, but the skill most pioneering men needed and used to the best of their abilities was the skill to build a cabin and furniture from native wood and stone.

It would not surprise me at all that a carpenter named Wright descending from Welsh carpenters would live in Vermont side-by-side in 1850 with another carpenter named Wright who was himself a descendant of a long line of English carpenters entirely unrelated to his Wright neighbor's Welsh family. But then again I have not studied the Welsh families of Vermont at all and therefore assume, (perhaps incorrectly) that the vast majority of the Wright families in Vermont in 1850 were descended from New England Wrights from London, East Anglia, the Midlands and Scotland. Conventional wisdom has it that their Welsh "cousins" were grouped further to the south in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and especially Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina. Those, however, are just glittering generalities that you can keep in the back of your mind, but don't put too much stock in them for the purposes of researching your Ernestus Wright.

Another interesting take on the Wright surname is the statistic that shows that Wright was the 13th most common surname in England by 1600. If you do a little regression statistics and project typical population growth back to when the first men were given the Wright surname in 1086 C.E., you can see that just about any man in England who could lift a hammer and saw and build anything of wood was given the name Wright or some derivation of it, like, shipwright, wainswright, wheelwright, cartwright, etc. There had to have been thousands of them created WRIGHT at the same time.

With so many men all over England suddenly given the same surname in 1086 (only because they all had the same type skills) you can bet that every male genetic line existing in the country in that year had at least a couple dozen men in it who began to go by the surname Wright. That means there were suddenly dozens of entirely unrelated men running around with the same surname of Wright, many living within only a few miles of each other even way back then. Now we imagine what happens to the proliferation of the Wright surname over the next 5 centuries and we see why every 13th guy you meet on the streets of 17th century London is named WRIGHT!

We know from our own Wright Y-DNA project results (see that there are over 100 entirely separate genetic lines of Wright men in the US today that we know about. My bet is there are more we don't know about because our database only contains a couple of hundred participants. All of us also know from that genetic data base that we are more closely related to men of other surnames (for me: French, Meeking, Chapman & Clark) than we are to most of the other Wright men in the database (except our closest Wright kin.)

So, to propose a connection between two men who live near each other because they share the Wright surname and an occupational skill, is a very risky posit. There has to be a lot more to link them than that before I would say you are getting your connection to safe ground.

Good luck with your Welsh Wrights. Everyone with Welsh ancestors has trouble sorting out the lineages. Welshmen came to America in no big defining waves like some of the other English ancestors. It is hard to figure out, from our end of the view of history, whether they were among the first to go to Maryland and Delaware in the early 1700s or some of the later ones who came to New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania just before and then after the Revolutionary War and there are even a bunch that went to Canada still later then ended up in the US via Ohio.

If you have gotten back to only 1850 VT with your ancestor search and lost the parental track somewhere in MA, I predict you are in for some tough going. Unfortunately, I have little in my research work that would be of any real help to you. Everything I have is about every Wright except the Welsh Wrights.

So, I can only give you some general advice. If you haven't done it already, the first thing I would do is point my research toward finding a living all-male line descenent of your oldest known Wright ancestor. I would then make contact with him and try to persuade him to participate in the Wright DNA project by submitting a cheek swab sample to Family Tree DNA ( The DNA data you get from that analysis and with the help of the folks at and the site, you will find out what larger Wright family group he belongs to and hopefully be introduced to some "cousins" you currently do not know about who are researching the same family. They can help you more than anyone else tie your branch of the family to the right immigrant father.

Beyond that, I have no great advice except the usual: avoid speculations when there are still viable research options that have not been explored. Don't trust other people's work blindly - Check it out before you co-opt and don't forget to give them the credit. Keep good records so you know what you have looked at and what you learned and where you need still to go with the research. Along with studying census records, vital statistics records, probate records and land transaction records, study any biographies of contemporaries that exist and the history of your period and area of interest and use your imagination to formulate research strategies for difficult ancestors. Make friends among fellow researchers along the way, helping them when you can, even if they are not working on your family. Be open to critiques and challenges of your work, and never let your frustrations get the better of you.

Good luck,
Mike Wright

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1265029053000
Classification: Query
Surnames: Wright
Thanks for the welcome advice. My husband is a direct descendant, I just have to talk him into doing the dna.
Have you found any clues in the religion aspect? My Wright line were "congregational" or Methodist when no Congregational church was around. He was very strict, disowned his daughter for marrying a Catholic.
Thanks again

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1265046967000
Classification: Query
Hi June,

By 1850 there was every sort of religious ilk in America doing all sorts of things that make it a little risky to predict a family's religious background based on where they lived and what faith they professed in 1800. Having said that, we know that because the population of New England was started by a huge number of Puritan and Separatist immigrants from fairly well defined regions of England at a very early time, the entire New England area was saturated first with Congregationalist churches. Probably for the first 50 to 75 years of settlement in New England that was the only type of church congregation you would find. So, nearly all of the New England towns in MA, CT, VT, NH & NY settled by English before the beginning of the French and Indian Wars, one of the very first orders of business for the community was to build a church building and settle a minister and they were overwhelmingly of the Congregationalist mentality. Most of these people had VERY strong ideas about what the acceptable form of worship was (simple and reverent), and how church governance should be conducted (by themselves) and what the form of association between themselves and other churches in New England should be (mutually independent, but cooperating). They all perceived their religious "archenemies" to be the "corrupt" Church of England and the Catholic religion, in particular.

In my descendant family, the immigrant father was educated at a Cambridge University college in England designed to produce Puritan ministers. He never went so far as to be an ordained preacher, but, as a deacon in both of his Congregationalist churches, he preached the Word to the people when there was no settled minister in attendance. He also quarreled with some members and the minister of his first congregation in Springfield, MA such that in 1654 he and 30 other families of that community went up the Connecticut river 30 miles and founded Northampton, MA and started their own Congregationalist assembly. We do not know exactly what the quarrel was about, but it no doubt centered on "splitting hairs" regarding some proposed changes in the form of worship or governance of the Springfield church. Yes, their religious views were strict, in that regard.

But the core of their faith rested on salvation by grace, repentance and forgiveness so that they could forgive great sins among themselves, such as adultery, theft, and swindling (with administration of appropriate punishments), but to have one of their own marry a Catholic or Church of England spouse was, for well over a century, an unforgivable sin in nearly all of those families that would result in the offender being dis-owned by the father, if not expelled and banished from the community forever.

Then later the Methodist ministers came from England to New England and reached out to the small settlements on the frontiers of New England who were without any churches. This was a time when people whose families had been long settled in New England were starting to expand to the frontiers in great numbers after the end of the French and Indian Wars. To a Congregationalist family, the Methodist form of worship and message of salvation was close enough to the simple form of Congregationalist worship to be acceptable when there were no Congregationalist alternatives available. The Methodist preachers were also acceptable substitutes because they were itinerant. That meant there was little danger that their form of worship would supplant the eventual assembly of a Congregationalist church that was the communities' eventual goal to establish as soon as enough people could be gathered to the community. To a frontier Congregationalist family with no settled Congregationalist preacher within easy riding distance, hearing the word from an itinerant Methodist preacher in a rough cabin was better than not hearing the Word at all.

This Congregationalist bent for your husband's ancestor also speaks of a non-Welsh origins for your family. Most of the Welsh who came to America were Methodists or Quakers before they arrived.

Frank Lloyd Wright is always talked about as being of Welsh origins, but his Welsh ancestry was actually on his mother's side of the family, not on male side. Rumors of your husband's Welsh ancestry may be similarly based.

In any case, I strongly urge your husband to participate with the rest of us in developing this genetic genealogy database for the Wright surname. It is painless, private and relatively inexpensive, and holds the potential to blast away your brick walls in getting past the dearth of paper documentation in Western Massachusetts, Vermont and NY for the decades between 1720 and 1810.

If his test results come back in Haploid group E1b1b1a2, we will be talking much more in the future. That will mean he, like me and about a half dozen other men in the database, is a Kelvedon Hatch Wright descended from either Deacon Samuel Wright of Springfield (1606? - 1665) & Northampton, MA or the Deacon's third cousin, Thomas Wright of Wethersfield, CT (1610 - 1670). In that case, we can be of some real help to you.

If his test results come back any other haploid, my hope for you is that he matches someone who is actively researching that family group and can help you figure out how your husband's line fits in.

Again, Good Luck.
Mike Wright

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1265056281000
Classification: Query
Again, I thank you, for sharing your information. My Ernestus was married to Jane Young, she was born in Ireland according to the census.

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1362963211000
Classification: Query
Abner married Elizabeth Pickett 1768 in New Marlborough, MA, making the following 5 children that I know of theirs:
Dorastus WRIGHT b: 3 Dec 1769 in Sandisfield, Berkshire, MA
Elizabeth WRIGHT b: 31 Jan 1771 in Berkshire Co, MA
Asahel WRIGHT b: 4 Aug 1778 in Weybridge, Addison, VTe
Abner Jr WRIGHT b: 28 Feb 1781 in Weybridge, Addison, VT
Lamentation WRIGHT b: Aug 1791 in Weybridge, Addison, VT

Marriage 2 I'd found as Eunice Page.
Elizabeth Pickett Wright, Dorastus' daughter, is my ancestor, having married Amos Willson.

Re: Asahel Wright (1778) and Eunice Wasson VT/NY

Posted: 1502721554000
Classification: Query
Have you found any information on Ernestus Wright? He is also a brick wall for our family line.
Tacie Wright
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