Dr. John Olmsted, Hartford Founder‹ Back to The Founders
Compiled by Timothy Lester Jacobs, SDFH Genealogist
JOHN1 OLMSTEAD, DR., HARTFORD FOUNDER (RICHARDA, JAMESB) was baptized 16 Feb 1616/17 in Fairstead, Essex, England, and died bef. 22 Sep 1686 in Norwich, CT (inventory) d. s. p.. He married ELIZABETH ADGATE abt. 1641 in prob Hartford, CT, daughter of ________ ADGATE. She was born abt. 1620 in England, and died aft. 15 Oct 1689 in Norwich, CT (will).
It is uncertain when Dr. John Olmstead emigrated to New England: it is alleged in “The Original Proprietors” and in the “Genealogy of the Olmstead Family in America” that he came aboard the “Lyon” with his uncle James Olmstead, but Robert Charles Anderson disputes this in the Great Migration article on James Olmstead. There appear to be no records of John Olmstead in Massachusetts or elsewhere prior to his being in Hartford by 1639. He was a son of Richard Olmstead, brother of James Olmstead of Hartford. Dr. John Olmstead was a brother of Richard Olmstead of Hartford and Norwalk, and Rebecca Olmstead who married Thomas Newell of Farmington, Connecticut.
It is alleged in “The Original Proprietors” and in the “Genealogy of the Olmstead Family in America” that his wife was Elizabeth Marvin, daughter of Matthew Marvin of Hartford and Norwalk, but Robert Charles Anderson disputes this in the Great Migration article on Matthew Marvin, claiming that John Olmstead’s wife was actually Elizabeth Adgate, sister of Thomas Adgate of Saybrook and Norwich, Connecticut.
Dr. John Olmstead was one of those of Hartford “by courtesie of the Towne” in 1639, when his home lot or two roods was on the west side of the road from George Steele’s to the Great Swamp. He also held in the Harford land inventory of February 1639/40, one acre and two roods of upland in the Forty Acres.
He soon removed to Saybrook, probably by 1649, then to Norwich about 1660. He was constable in Norwich in 1665.
He served as a surgeon in King Philip’s War in 1676. He was the recipient of land in Norwich by the will of the Sachem Joshua Uncas in 1675. Dr. John Olmstead’s will was probated 22 September 1686, in which will he left most of his large estate to his brother and sister. He is not known to have had any children.
Genealogy: not applicable, as he had no children