greene-coat-of-arms-family-crestThe Greene family has a very rich history in the United States and England that  has been well-documented by researchers.  The Greenes were among the earliest colonizers of the United States, having arrived from England on the ship James in 1635.  Related family branches of the Greene family trace back to at least three Mayflower ship passengers:  William BrewsterRichard Warren, and George Soule.

The Mayflower story is one of the most recognizable in U.S. history.  The ship was one of the first to sail from Europe to the present-day United States, and its passengers established what is today considered the second oldest permanent English colony at Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620 (the oldest permanent colony being at Jamestown, Virginia).  In addition, the three aforementioned passengers were among 41 men to sign the Mayflower Compact, which is likely the earliest earliest attempt at religious freedom and self-determination recorded in the New World.  Today, United States citizens largely remember the Mayflower passengers, better known as Pilgrims, every Thanksgiving Day in remembrance of their 1621 celebration in Plymouth to commemorate a successful harvest.  Click on the three thumbnails (every thumbnail is clickable) below to see how my grandfather Shirley, Generation 11 below, is a direct descendant of these three Mayflower passengers — some of the first English settlers in the New World.

Link to Mayflower passenger William Brewster

Greene to Richard Warren

Link to Mayflower passenger Richard Warren

Link to George Soule

Link to Mayflower passenger George Soule

See this page for a discussion on our Greene line’s roots in England prior to their arrival in the New World and their possible connection to English and French royalty.

The Greenes in our line also have a strong record of military service to the United States, with family members having volunteered in the Revolutionary War, the Civil War, the Spanish American War, and World War II among others.  David Greene (Fifth Generation below) was the second cousin of the famous Revolutionary War General Nathanael Greene.

Our line from the arrival of the first generation until my grandfather is as follows:  John–James–David–David Jr–David III–David IV–Joseph–David–Hosea–Hosea Jr–Shirley.

The succeeding generations in our direct line are highlighted where children are noted and are in green text.

Below is a map of New England, which notes the migration of our Greene family through the first eleven generations in the United States.  The chronological ordering of the towns they lived in is as follows using present-day names:  1) Boston, Massachusetts; 2) Providence, Rhode Island; 3) Warwick, Rhode Island; 4) Portsmouth Rhode Island; 5) Jamestown, Rhode Island; 5) North Kingstown, Rhode Island; 6) Thompson, Connecticut; and 7) Killingly, Connecticut.

Greene Migration – 11 Generations


John Greene “the Surgeon”

Our line of Greenes began in the New World with the arrival of the pioneer John Greene “the surgeon” on the ship James in Massachusetts Bay on June 3, 1635.  The James sailed from Southampton, England in April 1635, and John was a passenger along with his wife Joanne Tattershall and several children. John was the fourth son born to Richard and Mary (Hooker) Greene in Gillingham, Dorset, England.  He was born around 1597 at the family estate in Bowridge Hill.  According to records, he married Joanne Tattershall, daugther of Richard and Margeret (Fox) on November 4, 1619 at the St. Thomas Church in Salisbury.  Together, they had seven children, as recorded at the Parish Register at the St. Thomas Church:

John Greene was baptized August 15, 1620.  He married Anne Almy.

Peter Greene was baptized March 10, 1621-22.  He married Mary Gorton

Richard Greene was baptized March 25, 1624.  He died young, probably in England.

James Greene was born in 1626 in Salisbury, Wiltshire, England and died April 27, 1698 in Potowomut, Rhode Island.   He married Elizabeth Anthony on August 3, 1665 in Warwick, Kent, Rhode Island.

Thomas Greene was baptized June 4, 1628.  He married Elizabeth Barton.

Joan Greene was baptized October 3, 1630.  She married John Hade.

Mary Greene was baptized May 19, 1633.  She married James Sweet.

The following is an account of John “Surgeon” Greene by William Henry Beck in his book, A Family Genealogy: [The Greenes] “settled in Salem but were driven out by religious persecutions, and soon after went to Providence (Rhode Island).  Here he was one of the twelve to who Roger Williams conveyed land in his ‘initial deed’, thusly called because the men are mentioned only by their initials, and one of the twelve original members of the first Baptist Church in Providence.  He was of the party who with Samuel Gorton purchased Shawomet, later called Warwick (Rhode Island), from the Indians.  His is the only name of a white man signed as a witness to the deed.  His own plot, called Occupassnatuxet, more commonly known as Pastuxet, remained in the family until 1782, when it was bought by Governor John Francis, whose heirs are still in possession.

In August 1637, he was accused of having spoken contemptuously against magistrates and stood ‘bound in a 100 marks to appear at the next Quarter Court’, by order of the Massachusetts authorities.  In September following, for the same offense, he was fined $20.00 and was to be committed until the fine was paid, and enjoined not to come into the jurisdiction of Massachusetts upon pain of fine or imprisonment at the pleasure of the Court.  A few months later the same court of Massachusetts received a letter from Greene with which he charged the court with usurping the power of Christ over churches and men’s consciences.  The court again ordered him not to come into their jurisdiction under pain of imprisonment and further censure.  In 1643 came the summons to the Warwick men to appear in Boston to answer to the complaints of Pomham and Soconoco, ‘as to some unjust and injurious dealing toward them by yourself’.  Then soldiers were sent to bring them by force to Boston, after the accused refused to go, declaring they were legal subjects of the King of England, and beyond the limits of Massachusetts authority.  On their arrival, there was a parley during which the officers declared that the Warwick settlers ‘held blasphemous errors of which they must repent’ or go to Boston for trial.  Greene escaped capture but was banished like the rest.

Greene Monument

Apparently Mrs. Joanne (Joan) Tattershall Greene did not die at sea in 1635 as has been recorded by others. Joan sought refuge with the Indians in the area called Occupassnatuxet (aka Pastuxet, now Warwick), Rhode Island, from the Massachusetts authorities in 1643.  The event was so trying that she died there from shock. After Joanne’s death in 1643, John Greene returned to England and remarried twice.  First to Alice Daniels of Gillingham on May 8, 1644 Gillingham, County Dorset, England, who died soon after marriage.  Then to Phillippa (Phillis) Arnold of London on October 20, 1645 in London, County Middlesex.  Three years later, however, when he, 3rd wife Phillippa, and Samuel Gorton returned from England, he had the satisfaction of landing in Boston, justified by the King of England.

John’s Headstone

Like others of this company of Shawomet settlers, Greene held responsible positions under the charter and was magistrate, assistant member of the town council, representative in the assembly, and commissioner from 1654 to 1657.  John Greene died in Warwick, Rhode Island in January of 1659.”  He is buried at the Shawomet Baptist Church in Warwick, Rhode Island. In his will, John Greene, surgeon, left “to son James Greene” as follows: “I give unto my sonne James Greene my six aker Lott in necke called Warwick neck or Misshaomet together with my Great Lott and all my other Right in saide necke yet undivided either upland or meddow.”

John is the ancestor of many notable figures that helped shape United States History, including President Warren G. Harding and Revolutionary War General Nathanael Greene, second in command to General George Washington.

The following six generations of information comes almost entirely from The Greene’s of Rhode Island, with Historical Records of English Ancestry, 1534-1902, published in 1903 by George Sears Greene.  Most of my own research seems to point to this book as being in-depth and trustworthy.


James Greene “of Potowomut(John1)

[James] was baptized at St. Thomas’s Church, Salisbury, England, June 21, 1626, and came with his parents to New England in 1635.  He was made freeman of Warwick and  Providence Plantations in 1647.  He resided at Old Warwick on the main street on the southerly side, where the graveyard is now located in which he and some of his family are buried.

He was on the “Roule of Freemen of Colonic of everie Town” in 1655, and was Town Clerk, May 16, 1661.  He was “an excellent penman of the old English text.”  He was a member of the General Assembly of the Colony, being Commissioner under the  first charter, and Deputy and Assistant under the second (1663), for ten years, between 1660 and 1675.  He was considered “a man of much practical sagacity.” He does not appear to have been in public life after the Indian war (1675-6), when his house, with all others in Warwick, except the “Stone Castle,” was burned to the ground.  When the message from the General Assembly advising the people of Warwick of danger was received, he fled to Portsmouth, Rhode Island, where the father of his second wife, John Anthony, resided.

He remained for some years at “Hunting Swamp, but in 1684, having made purchases of Warwick land,” he removed to Potowomut, where was an ancient mill, and built his house on the hill near the west bank of the river, overlooking the beautiful lake which furnished the water power for the forge which his grandsons (sons of Jabez) established for making anchors and other forms of iron work.  This became a notable industry in colonial times and in the early days of the republic.  The interests of the forge “were enhanced by the revival of business after peace existed between England and her emancipated colonies, and this became the pioneer of the more extensive works on Pawtuxet river, near the western border of Warwick, known as ‘the Forge.'”

The place at Potowomut where James Greene resided until his death, was the birthplace of his great-grandson, the highly distinguished Major-General Nathanael Greene (My note:  Nathanael was the first cousin of David – Fourth Generation – below) of the Revolutionary Army, and the residence of his descendants for more than two hundred years.  He died at his mansion in Potowomut,” April 27, 1698, in the seventy-second year of his age, and was buried at the Old Warwick burial-ground, under an altar-tomb with the inscription still in a good state of preservation, on his original house lot of six acres granted by the proprietors of Warwick, 1647, when he had attained his majority.  This lot was located on the main street, the second lot north-easterly from the road leading to Warwick Neck.”

[James] married (1), about 1658, Deliverance, daughter of Robert Potter (one of the early proprietors of Warwick.  He married (2), August 3, 1665, Elizabeth, daughter of John and Susanna Anthony of Portsmouth, Rhode Island.  She died in 1698.  John Anthony, father of Elizabeth, second wife of James Greene, was the son of John Anthony, “an inn-keeper with other occupations,” who came in the ship Hercules to New England, April i6, 1634, and settled at Portsmouth, Rhode Island.   He was made freeman in 1641, and in 1642 sold fifty acres of land which had been granted him at Newport.  In 1644 had land grant at Portsmouth.  He was appointed on May 25 of same year by the Court of Commissioners “to keep a house of entertainment.”  He was Corporal, Commissioner, and Deputy, and was ancestor of Hon.  Henry B. Anthony, Governor of Rhode Island and United States Senator.  He died on July 28, 1675.

Children by Susanna Anthony:

 James, born June 1, 1658-9, married Mary Fones.

 Mary, born September 28, 1660, married James Reynolds.

 Elisha, born March 17, 1662-3, died young.

 Sarah, born August 27, 1664, married Henry Reynolds.

 Peter, born August 25, 1666, married Elisabeth Slocum.

 Elizabeth, born October 17, 1668, married Francis Reynolds, (2) Hill.

 John, born February 1, 1670, died young.

 Jabez, born May 17, 1673, married Mary Barton.

 David, born June 24, 1677, married (1) Mary Slocum, (2) Sarah Barber.

 Thomas, born November 11, 1682, died young.

 John, born September 30, 1685, married Mary Allen.

 Susanna, born May 24, 1688, married Joseph Hull.

(All but last date from Warwick Records.)

In his will dated March 22, 1697(8), James Greene by will “gives to son David Greene all my right of medow to Southeard of land he hath Already by deed of gift from me.  Also one lot of upland lying & butting upon the mill river — containing fifteen acres.  Also all my rite of land lying westweard of John Knows his land in Pictowamut Neck, — also one weavers loom gear and tackling thereto belonging.  Also one thousand boards.”


David Greene “of Jamestown(James2 John1)

[David] was born at Portsmouth, Rhode Island on June 24, 1677.  He was a farmer by trade.  He married on May 11 (or March 3), 1698-9, Mary, daughter of Reverand Ebenezer and Mary Thurston Slocum of Jamestown, and sister of his brother Peter’s wife.  Mary was born June 21, 1679.  Her father was a Deputy for fifteen years and a noted man among the Quakers, as well as a citizen of importance and influence.  Her maternal grandfather was Edward Thurston of Newport, Rhode Island, also a Quaker, Deputy for twelve years, Commissioner and Assistant.  My note: Before May 7, 1712, David Greene purchased 235 acres of land in North Kingstown, Kings Co (now Washington Co), RI near Plum Point Rd.  This land remained in the David Greene family for over 176 years. 

David Greene married (2), June 24, 1706, Sarah, daughter of Moses and Susanna Barber of South Kingstown, Rhode Island, (Friends Records, Newport).  She was born March 25, 1682 and died June 29, 1729.

David and Mary had only one child:

David, born on September 2, 1701-2, married (1) Katharine Greene, (2) Mary Knowles.

Children by Second Marriage:

Mary, born June 5, 1707, married Joseph Sheldon.

Sarah, born January 20, 1708-9, married Benjamin Ingraham.

Elizabeth, born March 25, 1711, married John Hookey.

Susannah, born May 1, 1713.

Abigail, born March 25, 1715, married John Remington.

Waite, born December 3, 17 16. No further record.

Bathsheba, born July 30, 1720, married John Grenold.

Jonathan, born April 6, 1722, married Mary Stafford.

Joseph, born May 30, 1724, married Abigail Gould.

Patience, born February 15, 1726.

[David] died at Jamestown, Rhode Island on January 31, 1761-2.


David Greene (David3 James2 John1).

[David] was the eldest son born at Jamestown, Rhode Island on September 2, 1701.  He married (1) on December 23, 1721, Katharine Greene of East Greenwich, and (2), November 4, 1724, Mary, “daughter of Henry Knowles of South Kingstown,” who died May 17, 1744, in her forty-second year {Records Friends’ Meeting, East Greenwich).  David had no children by his first marriage.

Children by Second Marriage:

Mary, born June 2, 1727, married Charles Tillinghast.

David, born August 28, 1728, married (1) Elizabeth and (2) Esther.

Margaret, born March 8, 1730, married Jonathan Capron.

Ebenezer, born January 10, 1731, married Frances Rice. (?)

Patience, born November 7, 1733.

Alice (or Abbie ?), born June 16, 1735.

One record states that “Patience (Brayton) and Abbie  (Kelton), daughters of David Greene, were Quaker preachers ” (see Friends’ Records).  Their grandmother was a daughter of Ebenezer Slocum, prominent among the Quaker preachers. One of the descendants of this line wrote on July 25, 1880: “The first Greene in Kingstown settled on land where Oliver Greene now lives.  His name was David, and he had a son David, a lame man, who had David and another son, name not known [Jonathan].  The third David married Sarah Allen, daughter of Jeffray, a Revolutionary soldier.”    David was a first cousin of Revolutionary War Major-General Nathanael Greene.

[David] died on October 10, 1757, in his fifty-sixth year.  His will, dated September 9, 1754 and proved October 18, 1757, mentions “wife Hannah” (which would indicate a third marriage if the name is correctly copied); also “son David, daughters Mary Tillinghast, Patience and Waity, grandson David Hazard” (North Kingston Records, 48, 69).


David Greene (David4 David3 James2 John1).

[David] was the eldest son born on August 25, 1728.  He was made freeman of Jamestown, Rhode Island on April 30, 1754.  He “was a farmer, and was lame.” My note:  David was the 2nd cousin of Nathanael Greene.  David married (1), Elizabeth , who died April 8, 1783, in her fifty-third year; and (2), Esther, who died January 30, 1788.  Children:

David, born November 4, 1760, married Sarah Allen.

Mary, born June 14, 1765.

Jonathan, born July 25, 1767, died December 29, 1821.

David died on August 8, 1789.


David Greene “of North Kingstown(David5 David4 David3 James2 John1).

[David] was the eldest son, born on November 4, 1760.  He married Sarah, daughter of Joshua Allen, who died May 2, 1832, in the sixty-seventh year of her age.  Another account states that, “David married Sarah, daughter of Jeffrey Allen, a Revolutionary soldier.”  My addition:  According to Pension Bureau records and Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) files, David served as a Private in the 2nd North Kingstown Company of the Rhode Island militia during the Revolutionary War from 38 non-consecutive months during the years 1776-1781 under Colonel Charles Dyer, Captain John Cole, and later Captain Lawrence Pearce.  

Under Colonel Dyer, David participated in a peculiar and little known event of the War that occurred on November 6, 1776 – the capture of the 28-gun frigate HMS Syren.  As the story goes, when the Syren ran into a sandbar near Jamestown, Rhode Island in the early morning hours of November 6 during a major storm, its Captain ordered its cannon fired to alert other British ships in the area.  Colonel Dyer’s militia responded immediately to the noise and brought in cannon from the town to fire artillery at the stranded ship.  Between the damage the ship sustained by running ashore and being struck by cannon fire, the Syren’s captain ordered the destruction of small stores and weapons and ultimately surrendered the ship to the militia.  In all, the militia captured some 135 British sailors and marines.  It was one of the few examples during the Revolutionary War whereby American forces captured a Royal Navy warship.

David received a military pension of $80 per year from Washington County, Rhode Island from March 4, 1831 to August 24, 1833.  David was the second cousin, once removed from Nathanael Greene.


David, born January 4, 1786, married Hannah Carr.

Elizabeth, born May 19, 1787, married Champlin Watson.

Joshua Allen, born December 13, 1788, married Ahbie Dyer.

Joseph, born April 24, 1790, married Mary Northup.

Caleb, born March 15, 1792, married Sarah Ann Gardiner.

Reynolds, born January 12, 1794, married Sarah Wanton.

Thomas, born January 8, 1796, married Phebe Congdon.

William, born August 2, 1797, married.

Benjamin, born July 4, 1799, died September 21, 1800.

Sarah, born February 16, 1801, married Robert Browning.

Hannah, born December 20, 1802, married Robert K. Johnson.

Benjamin, born May 5, 1807, died November 25, 1818.

David died on September 1, 1834 at the age of 74 and is buried in the David Greene Cemetery in North Kingstown, Rhode Island.  His gravestone inscription reads: 

“In Memory of David Greene Esq. who departed this life Sept. 1, 1834 in the 74th year of his age .

Behold and see as you pass by / as you are now, so once was I, / as I am now, so you must be, / prepare for death and follow me.”




Joseph Greene (David6 David5 David4 David3 James2 John1)

1830 US Census

[Joseph] was born at North Kingstown, Rhode Island on April 24 (or 29), 1790.  He married Mary, daughter of Henry Northrup, a Revolutionary soldier, born May 8, 1750, died January 3, 1826, and his wife, Hannah (Place) Northrup.  Mary Northrup was born on January 19, 1787 and died May 16, 1859.  The Daughters of the American Revolution website lists Henry Northup as a “Patriot” based on his service as a Private in the Rhode Island Militia during the Revolutionary War.  According to the resource Rhode Island Births, a Joseph Greene was born on April 24, 1790 to David Greene and Sarah (Allen) Greene.  

1850 US Census

1850 Census

Based on the number of males and females in the immediate family in 1830, the Joseph Greene in the referenced  U.S. Census above left is “ours.”  Joseph is also listed in the 1850 U.S. Census at right with an age consistent with Joseph’s date of birth.  In addition, the fact that he is listed with a spouse named Mary and living in the home of his daughter Hannah and her husband Benjamin (listed under children below), makes it certain it is “our” Joseph. 


Julia Ann, born February 28, 1809, married; had son, born June 15, 1828.

Hannah Allen, born July 31, 1813, married Benjamin Greene.

Henry Northrup, born December 16, 1814, married Mary Ann Turner.

David, born January 29, 1817, married Amy M. Nickerson.

Joseph, born January 31, 1821, married Adeline Clongh.

Sarah, born April 17, 1823, married Silas Whitman.

Mary Charlotte, born January 8, 1825, died November 12, 1846, unmarried.

Lydia Ann, born February 24, 1829, married Godfrey C. Pierce.

Joseph died on October 1, 1857.

The information below starting with David Greene in the eighth generation comes almost entirely from my research into the family, including books, vital records, census, and oral history.


David Greene (Joseph7 David6 David5 David4 David3 James2 John1)

David was born in North Kingstown, Rhode Island on January 29, 1817.  He married on March 31, 1840 to Amy M. (Martha or Mary) Nickerson in Smithfield, Rhode Island.  They were married by the Reverend William Balch.  Per the Nickerson family descendants book, Amy was born on May 28, 1814 in Cumberland, Rhode Island to Uriah Nickerson and Patience Cahoon.  Uriah and Patience were from Harwich, Massachusetts, and the Nickerson family, going back to immigrant William Nickerson, were the founders of Chatham, Massachusetts.

1860 US Census

David is the first Greene of our line since the arrival of the pioneer John1 to move permanently out of the state of Rhode Island, although it is unclear what the motives were for their move to Connecticut.  While it is not entirely certain which year the family moved (though it must have been after the birth of his first child in 1844 and before the 1850 census), David eventually settled first in Thompson, Connecticut.  According to the 1850 census, he was employed as a mule spinner in Thompson, Connecticut operating a machine used to spin cotton and other fibers into yarn.  In the 1860 census, he was living in Killingly, Connecticut, although still employed as a mule spinner.  Children:

Stephen, born February 23, 1844 in Glocester, Rhode Island.

Hosea, born March 31, 1849 in Thompson, Connecticut, married to Mary Josephine Taft.

CT 18th Vol Regiment

According to military records, David enlisted in the Union Army as a mechanic with Company B of the 18th Connecticut Volunteer Infantry Regiment at East Killingly, Connecticut on July 28, 1862.  He mustered in as a Private on August 22, 1862 in Norwich, Connecticut at the age of 45.

The 18th regiment’s five companies were stationed for the most part of the Civil War in the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia. According to our research, his regiment fought in Winchester from June 13-15 1863.  Per newspaper accounts, the 6,000 strong regiment held off a Confederate army of 30,000 for three days, delaying them to such an extent that the Union 6th corps from the Army of the Potomac was able to rush to Gettysburg and arrive in time to engage in the second day’s battle.

Death Register

Death Register

Civil War Discharge

David received a discharge from the Army on June 15, 1863 at the now-defunct Fort Marshall in Baltimore, Maryland.  The army surgeon’s report noted that David suffered from “acute rheumatic fever and a broken down constitution.”  According to the official Register of Death’s of Connecticut Volunteers, he died four days later on June 19, 1863 at Fort Marshall of typhoid fever.

David is buried at Bartlett’s #1 Cemetery in East Killingly, Connecticut and his burial stone includes GAR (Grand Army of the Republic), Company B, Connecticut Volunteers.  David’s son Hosea and wife Amey received a Civil War pension following David’s death.  Amy remained in Killingly, where she died in July 1873.




Hosea Edwin Greene (David8 Joseph7 David6 David5 David4 David3 James2 John1)

Hosea was likely born in Thompson, Connecticut on March 31, 1849 (despite the birth record of his son Hosea Jr. noting that his father was born in Glocester, Rhode Island).  While no birth record has been located in Thompson, his gravestone includes birth date information, and the 1850 census lists him in Thompson at about a year old.  He lived most of his life in East Killingly, but moved to East Brooklyn at about age 35 and lived there until his death.

Greene-Taft Marriage

On October 7, 1867 he married Mary Josephine Taft in Killingly.  Hosea was 18 years old, and Josephine was 16.  Austin Robbins, a Quaker minister presided over the ceremony.  Josephine was the daughter of Warren and Almira (Oately) Taft of Burrillville, Rhode Island.

Regarding Warren from the History of Windham County, Connecticut, by Richard Bayles:  “Warren Taft was born in 1817 in Burrillville, R. I.  He is the oldest son of Moses, whose father, Moses, was a son of Myaman Taft.  His mother vas Sally (Ballard) Taft.  He is a carpenter by trade.  He came from Rhode Island to East Killingly in 1843, where he has lived since that time.  He had charge of the building of the Whitestone Cotton Mill, in 1856, and had charge of repairs there until 1870.  In September of that year he was made superintendent of the Ross Mill, where he continued until August, 1886, and since that time he has been a farmer.  He was married in 1840 to Almira, daughter of Reverend Jonathan Oatley.  They have two daughters: Almira E. and Mary J.”  This branch of the Taft family is related to President William Howard Taft, and Josephine was the President’s 6th cousin.

1880 US Census

The 1870 and 1880 censuses note that Hosea Greene worked as a machinest at the cotton mill, run by the Quinebaug Company in Killingly.  He was also a mason, serving as a Senior Steward in the Moriah Lodge, No 15 and was also a member of the Etna Lodge, No 21 – also known as the Ancient Order of United Workmen (A.O.U.W) – both in Danielson, Connecticut.

Hosea and Josephine had two children:

Percy, born January 26, 1870 in Killingly, Connecticut, married (1) Emily Gadd and (2) Nellie Gregory.

Hosea Edwin, born July 8, 1878 in Killingly, Connecticut, married (1) Catherine Connelly and (2) Helen Susan Pellett.

Hosea Edwin Greene Death Recod

Death Record

Hosea died on March 5, 1889 at 39 years of age of heart disease in East Brooklyn, Connecticut and is buried next to his father David at the Bartlett’s #1 cemetery in East Killingly, Connecticut.  The death record at left notes that Hosea had heart disease for two years.  His funeral was solemnized with Masonic orders at his former residence.  According to his obituary in the Windham County Transcript, Hosea had been sick for some time before died and mostly confined to the house.  The obituary also described Hosea as “a quiet, modest, Christian gentleman, possessing many amiable traits of character, and was highly esteemed by all his acquaintances.”

Josephine remarried on December 30, 1890 in Chicago, Illinois to an English immigrant named William Thomas Cull and they had a daughter named Ellen on August 9, 1892.  Josephine and William appear in the 1900 and 1910 U.S. census living in Chicago, as well as city directories for Pasadena California throughout the 1920s.  Josephine died in Los Angeles on December 22, 1936.


Hosea Edwin Greene Jr (Hosea9  David8 Joseph7 David6 David5 David4 David3 James2 John1)

Birth Record

Hosea & Helen

Hosea was born in Killingly, Connecticut on July 8, 1878.  We do not know much about his early life, although according to oral tradition he completed at least a few years of high school.  Family members note that he was a good athlete and an avid basketball player.  He was a member of  a competitive men’s basketball team in the early 1900s.  The team was made up of members (and perhaps former members) of Hosea’s military unit:  Connecticut Volunteers, Company F.  He played at least two years with this team.  In both photos, he is in the back row (standing) in the right-hand corner.

Hosea is a top right

Team in 1901; Hosea is a top right

Hosea is at top right

Team in 1902; Hosea is again at top right

Spanish-American War

According to the Adjutant General of the State of Connecticut’s Roster of Connecticut Volunteers Who Served in the War between the United States and Spain 1898-1899, Hosea Greene (at the age of 20) was a volunteer to fight in the Spanish-American War.  He enlisted with the Third Connecticut Volunteer Infantry in February 1897 and mustered into service between July 2 and 6, 1898 at Niantic, Connecticut.  The unit then trained at Camp Meade, Pennsylvania and was eventually sent south, first to Charlotte, South Carolina and eventually ending its service at Savannah, Georgia, where it was mustered out after the end of the War on August 12, 1898.  Hosea served as an “appointed musician” in Company F (from Danielson) and held the rank of Private.  At the time of his death, he had been the Commander of the local United Spanish War Veterans post.

Twice Married

On February 25, 1900 Hosea married Catherine (Katy) Connelly in Killingly.  In the 1900 census, Hosea is living in Killingly, Connecticut in the home of his mother-in-law and Katy.  His listed profession is “day laborer,” while Katy worked at one of Killingly’s woolen mills.  Hosea’s marriage to Katy did not last.  Per a May 13, 1905 article in the Hartford Courant, he filed a petition for a divorce from her after five years of marriage on the grounds of habitual intemprance.  His case was heard by a superior court judge, who granted the petition.

Hosea and Katy had one child that died about a week after being born:

Kenneth Francis, born on November 6, 1901 in Killingly, Connecticut, died November 17, 1901 in Killingly, Connecticut.

Greene-Pellett Marriage

Greene-Pellett Announcement

On April 2, 1906, he married Helen Susan Pellett in Killingly.  Helen was born on November 21, 1886 and was the daughter of Charles and Flora (Smith) Pellett, both of whose ancestors had been in the United States since the late 1600s and among the original settlers of Canterbury, Connecticut.  At the time of the marriage, Hosea worked as a motorman (someone who operates an electrified trolley car, tram, light rail, or rapid transit train) for the Worcester-Connecticut East trolley line, which ran from Norwich, Connecticut to Worcester, Massachusetts.

Hosea by his trolley about 1906

Hosea and colleagues by the trolley about 1906

Hosea and Helen had six children together:

Doris Anora, born on April 14, 1908 in Killingly, Connecticut, died August 6, 1912 in Killingly, Connecticut.

Russell Kenneth, born on September 13, 1911 in Killingly, Connecticut, married Marjorie Lindner.

Shirley Weston, born on August 1, 1913 in Killingly, Connecticut, married Loretta Despatie.

Lawrence Stanley, born on August 29, 1918 in Killingly, Connecticut, married Clara Spiewak.

Helen Virginia, born on May 12, 1922 in Killingly, Connecticut, married Kenneth Spaulding.

Robert Edwin, born on May 11, 1925 in Killingly, Connecticut, married Doris Blanchette.

According to the 1910 census, Hosea and Helen lived in Killingly with their daughter Doris, and Hosea worked as a mail carrier for the United States Postal Service’s Rural Free Delivery (RFD) service.  The RFD served people in traditionally rural farming areas, and Hosea’s route was over 20 miles per day.  He continued as a mail carrier for 28 years until his death in 1935.

Hosea, Helen, and daughter Doris about 1909

Hosea, Helen, and daughter Doris about 1909


In the 1913 Danielson, Connecticut city directory, Hosea and Helen  lived on Otis Street.  Hosea was apparently also quite the businessman. According to The Horseless Age magazine from January 1915, Hosea went into a partnership with a Michael Grimshaw to open an auto garage and repair shop in Dayville.  The two also operated a jitney service in the northern part of town.  Jitney service used to be a car for hire, usually between a taxi and a bus, where the operator charged a nickel.  The first Jitneys began in 1914 and were immensely popular over the next several years before being replaced by streetcars.  An article from the Music Trade Review magazine from November 1915 notes that Hosea and A.J. Cavanaugh leased Webster Hall in Dayville for the purpose of exhibiting moving pictures (movies).


Norwich Bulletin, 3/8/1915

Norwich Bulletin, 3/8/1915

Hosea was elected a constable representing the Republican party from at least 1912-1915 according to newspaper records in Connecticut.  While the definition of a constable differs by state, in Connecticut a constable was normally elected and served as the key law enforcement mechanism in rural parts of the state.  They had the powers to handle criminal investigations and arrests.

Hosea Greene WWI Registration Card

WWI Registration

On September 12, 1918 Hosea registered for the World War I draft in Putnam, Connecticut.  The registration card confirms his date of birth, his employment with the federal postal service, and notes that he was of medium height, stout build, and had brown hair and blue eyes.  Although he registered, he was not drafted to fight in the war.

1930 Census

A later Danielson city directory from 1927 lists Hosea and Helen as living on Hutchins Street, and the 1930 census shows the family living at 5 Francis Street (at a home that they owned) in Killingly.


Death Record

Death Record

Hosea E Greene Obituary_0001


According to his obituary Hosea died suddenly on October 4, 1935 in Norwich, Connecticut of a heart attack.  He had just left the office of his physician and was being helped into the car by his son Shirley on North Main Street in Norwich, when the heart attack occurred.  A priest who happened to be passing by issued the Last Rites, and Hosea died in Shirley’s arms at the age of 57 years.  His death record also notes that he had a heart condition known as chronic myocarditis.

Hosea was given a military funeral, which was held at the Westfield Congregational Church.  The funeral included a 21-gun salute during the playing of taps and was attended by a Colonel from the United Spanish War Veterans Association.  Hosea is buried at the Westfield Cemetery in Danielson, and the headstone inscription reads “Musician Co. F 3rd Co Inf.”.  Helen died in Alexandria, Virginia on July 11, 1967 and is buried at the Westfield Cemetery with Hosea.




Shirley Weston Greene (Hosea10 Hosea9  David8 Joseph7 David6 David5 David4 David3 James2 John1)

Birth Record

Birth Record

Shirley Greene was born on August 1, 1913 in the Dayville section of Killingly, Connecticut.  He was the third-born of six children and the second oldest son.  At the time of his birth, the name Shirley was still a distinctly male name.  However, following the popularity of the actress Shirley Temple, the name became regarded as a female name.  As a result, he came to dislike the name and especially later in life went mostly by his surname.  Below is a picture of Shirley at about age 4-5, presumably on the front porch of his house.Shirley Greene Young
Not much is known about his childhood, but he likely attended school up to perhaps 15.  In the 1930 U.S. Census, he is listed as 16 years old and not attending school.  Like both of his parents, he loved to play sports, particularly basketball.  While not a very religious person, he was raised in the Congregationalist church, which is usually considered the “original” religion of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay Colony settlers.
Greene-Despatie MarriageOn June 6, 1934 Shirley married Loretta Ida Despatie at the Sacred Heart Church in Brooklyn, Connecticut.  At that time, the marriage was considered somewhat controversial:  Shirley’s family were “blue blooded Yankees” of English stock and adherents to the traditional Congregational church, while Loretta’s family were first generation French Canadian immigrants and strict adherents to the Roman Catholic religion.

24 responses to “Greene

  1. Charles A. Green

    thank you, cousin, for this wonderful timeline in Greene/Green history. I have read this with great interest. I think that our linage seperated after the second generation. According to my research, Major General Nathaneal Greene was my third cousin, 8 times removed.

    You have done a really nice job presenting it here.

    C. A. Green


    • Charles, thanks for your kind words. Major Gen. Nathanael Greene was my 2nd cousin, 8 times removed! Did your Greene family remain in New England? I’m hoping once I have everything updated to begin researching more about the Greenes from England that came to the New World. Thanks again for stopping by! Leonel


      • Sarah Gouzoules

        Interesting! I have Kilton / Kelton, Brayton, and Allen all in my Greene line too. Major Gen Nathanael Greene is my 2nd cousin (7 times removed I think)


  2. sharon ( greene) Fritsch

    Hello im the grand daughter( Sharon) from Hosea and Robert Greene was my father.. I’m looking for any information I can find on my family..Please..


    • Great to hear from you Sharon and thanks for visiting! I think you and my mom are 1st cousins. I’ll be sending you an email separately to confirm.


      • Sharon (Greene) Fritsch

        I can’t tell you how excited.. I am hearing this news 🙂 I looked I didnot receive your email. How can I contact you?


        • Anonymous

          Do you know if I have any family in California?


          • Im the daughter of Robert Greene, Sharon I would like to know if I have any family members willing to contact me. I would love to hear more about my family my parents passed when I was young would like to know more about them. Please any information would help 760-953-8760


            • lmiranda5

              Hi Sharon, I have posted all info and pictures that I have at this time. If I discover additional information will certainly post.


  3. Norwood Grinalds

    What a beautiful presentation! I wish I had a copy of it. You have inspired me more than you could possibly know. I am looking for Daniel Greene ( b. 10 Oct 1747) in Warwick, Kent RI, who was a 2nd Lieutenant in Tallman’s RI state regiment (12 Dec 1776); Ensign, 1st RI (11 Apr 1777); taken prisoner 2 Nov 1777, and died 30 Apr 1778. I think his father was Thomas, b. about 1710 in West Greenwich, RI Also my husband is John Grinalds. You have John Grenold who married Bathsheba Greene. (I’ve had fun with this, particularly since she came into the picture when King David didn’t go into battle in the Spring when he should have gone. My husband is a retired Major General in the Marine Corps.) Again, thank you for sharing your hard work with us all, and in such a beautiful way. Old Miss


  4. Robert Capron

    Nice Job!

    Margaret Greene of David (4) married my grandfather Johnathan Capron in 1730. I read Margaret’s sister was heavily involved in the early abolitionist movement. I still reside in RI, but have never located David (4) gravesite.

    Robert Capron


    • lmiranda5

      Thanks for visiting Robert and leaving a comment. I’d be interested to learn more about Margaret’s sister and her involvement in the abolitionist movement.


  5. marion everton

    trying to find info for my mother,she has no info on her Biological father other thn his name Johnathon Ellsworth Greene,my be Jonathon Elsworth Greene not sure of correct spelling for first & middle name, but last name is Greene, she was born in 1939, she ws told her father was married (not to her mother), and had other child daughter possibly named Marguerite or Margaret and my mom was named Margaret after her,also possibly a son named John,he was older than my her mother, possibly in his 50’s, she was also told he owned part of Baker’s 4 corners in Seekonk, any info would be greatly appreciaated


  6. Jeanette Long

    I am interested in clearing up a mystery. I have a gggg grandmother who was a widow when she married William Rathbone in Exeter RI in 1786. Her name was Mrs. Sarah Greene. We think she was born abt. 1755. Just looking for leads. I do not know her maiden name.



    I live in Chile and I am a descendant of Charles Collins Greene who married Nieves Haviland Ossandón in 1858. I am planning to visit Providence in September and would very much like to meet with Greene descendants.
    Alfredo Silva Fernandez


  8. Kristen Dillard

    I am doing my family genealogy and my grandfather is a Greene. And my ancestors are from Gillingham, Dorset, England. I find this interesting if I am also related to Nathaniel Greene from the revolutionary war.


  9. lmiranda5

    Doris Tautkus
    Aug 17, 2018
    I was wondering if on the Greene side that we have some native Americans that were from Connecticut and Rhode Island that we are related too. This has been told many times to me from my father’s cousins that this is true.
    I will be very interested in your response.

    5d ago
    Hello, and thanks for visiting. I have not heard anything yet about Native Americans on the Greene side, at least in our branches. The folks from the family that have done DNA testing showed no traces, but they were both females, so would have missed the male line. I’ll see if I can dig anything else up, but an interesting question no doubt!

    Gary Tautkus
    4d ago
    Thanks for looking into this.


    • lmiranda5

      I checked on research that I have currently and did not find anything documenting Native Americans on our Greene side. That said, the only way to be sure is to check if any male Greenes in our line has taken a DNA test to see if it picks up any traces.


      • Anonymous

        I appreciate you taking the time to research if we had any Native Americans on the Greene side. I wonder where are relatives got their information.


  10. Kyle Cook

    Hey Cousin! Thanks for the hard work on this! My branch shares its start with Robert in the 1480s but we then follow with John, one of Sir Richard’s Brothers (John the Surgeon’s Grandfather I believe). Either way this branch ended mostly in the Midwest United States (Indiana, Michigan) through my Grandmother’s Side and it is quite interesting to see how it all comes together. Ironically enough on my father’s side were patrilineally direct descendants of Francis Cooke (another Mayflower member) so I can say at one point both sides of my family via cousins were on the same boat at the same time! Wouldn’t have known that without your research, keep it up!


    • lmiranda5

      Hey, thanks for visiting! it’s so interesting when you go far enough back to colonial New England how interconnected the various branches are.


  11. Mary Newell

    Anyone know the Greene family tree with Joses and Jonas Greene who lived in Rocky River Springs,N.C.?


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