Notes for Henry Champion: Henry Champion, who immigrated to America, is listed as one of the founders of Saybrook, Connecticut.
Although there is no proof of where he came from, one theory is that he descended from the French branch of the family which had come to England many years before Henry would have been born, and that he left England by way of Yarmouth, to New England. This would have been prior to 1647 which is when we first find him in the early Saybrook, Connecticut records, with mention of his marriage to Sarah Bennett.
Henry and Sarah were married in 1647 by the Rev. Mr. Sylvester Nash of Saybrook, and the couple lived in Saybrook, Connecticut, where Henry assisted in the development of the new town.
An excerpt from the Champion Genealogy opens a description of Henry Champion with these words: “This is but a meager sketch of one whose life, however obscure, has an interest for his posterity. He was not of base degree, but of independent, if not gentle, condition, and had left the green homes of Old England and her pleasant firesides, to war with wild beasts and the still fiercer Pequot, exacting a hard and scanty subsistence from the soil which he had found a howling wilderness" (p. 23).
In Saybrook Records, it states that Henry owned the following land in 1660: One parsel lying on the East side of the Great River Connecticut, whereon a house now standeth containing by estimation six ackers, the ends abutting against the land of Morgayn Bowers South East, and the land of Joseph Jarrit North West" Also one parsell in the planting field on the East side of the Great River CT, by estimation four ackers, the end abutts agains Blacke Halle River N. East, and against the great Marsh South West, the side abutts against the Land of Will Bechous North West (p. 10).
Prior to 1660, and previously to the foregoing record being entered, Henry had sold his lot "lying within the town plot" in Saybrook to Jonathan Rudd. This lot contained five roods, and "the one side abuts against the highway North and the other side abuts against the lands of Thomas Mirall and William Waller South, the one end abuts against the and of Thomas Rood East and the other end abuts against the highway West". This lot thus appears to have been the corner lot situated on the South side of the East and West road, and on the East side of the North and South road.
About 1669, Henry and Sarah moved to the East Side of Connecticut River and settled in the part of Lyme known as "Meeting House Hill." Henry built his house near the old burying ground and occupied himself chiefly with agriculture. According to the New England Historical and Genealogical Register, Henry paid taxes under Governor Andros.
Henry married Deborah Palmer, widow of Lewis Jones. Henry and Deborah had a pre nuptial agreement, which was witnessed by Aaron Huntley and Joseph Peck (a relative of Aaron Huntley and Balthazar DeWolf).
Henry is listed in the "New England Historical and Genealogical Register as one of the first and most active founders of Lyme. He was admitted a freeman there on May 12, 1670 and owned several parcels of land. The records of the town of Lyme were begun in 1674, and on June 18th of that year the following entries were made:
"Henry Champean's lot one the necke beyond the little stony brook, bounded East by the highwaie to a little tree by the marsh fronting North to the highwaie, West and South by the marsh, contayning aighteen ackers (18 acres), more or less;
"Henry Champean allowing John Laye Junior two ackers (2 acres) on the other side of the River adjoyningg to John Laye's medow.
"Henry Champean's meadow upon Stony Brook three ackers (3 acres) more or less bounded East by his own land, West and North by the commons, South by the medow of Renald Marvines. (According to Lyme Town Records, Book II, P 130, It appears that Henry Champion and Renald Marvin had a dispute about this land which was subsequently settled by an agreement dated Sep 8, 1696.)
"Henory Champean Senior's meadow upon Russ oylande containing three ackers, three quarders more or less bounded West upon the medow of Renald Mervines, Southwardly upon the slow, North by the Coave, Eastwardly by the meadow of John Laye Senior.
"Henory Champean's meadow on his home lotte contayning tow ackers (2 acres), and three guarders more or less, bounded South on the Cricke and the land of Peter Pratte, North on his own uplande, South West upon the Cove.
"Henory Champean's home lot that he bought of Beltishaser (Balthazar) De Wolf, contayning ten ackers of upland more or less, bounded East on the highwaie, Northerly on John Laye Senior, and Westerly on the Cove, Southerly upon the medow of his own and the mouth of the Cricke.
"Henory Champean's Calf Pasture Land containing twenty ackers more or less bounded North upon the highwaie, East upon thee commons, Southwardly upon the land of Richard Smith, Westerly on the Commons, with one dwelling house beulte (built) upon it.
"Henory Champean hath laid out to him at Big Medow tow ackers and a half more or less, bounded South on the medow of Widow Waller at a pine tree, Easterly by a cricke, (creek) Northerly by the River and a little oylande."
The foregoing records are dated June 18th 1674, and are recorded in the First Book of the Town Records of Lyme on pages 23 and 24, under attestation of Mathew Griswould and Renald Mervines, who were the town surveyors. See attached record documenting Henry to be the first Proprietor (New Englander), to own these lands. Prior to Henry’s ownership, the land belonged to the Indians.
In 1671, Henry was involved in a land dispute between the towns of Lyme and New London, fighting against Sgt. John Beebe of New London. (See John Beebe story)
According to Hinman in the Genealogy of the Puritans: "Few families in the Connecticut colony have been more prosperous than that of Henry Champion, senior. When I speak of his family I include his numerous descendants. The branch descending from Thomas has been particularly fortunate in amassing wealth."
Henry married twice, had six children, and died at about the age of 97 years. The September following his death, an agreement was entered into between the heirs and his Widow Deborah regarding the distribution of the estate, and the original of this agreement has been preserved.
His descendents, Colonel Henry, General Henry, and General Epaphroditus Champion all won distinction in the Revolutionary War, the latter of whom was Commissary General of provisions for the United States Army in 1778, and in 1793 was a member of the General Assembly (Martin, p. 1408). (ibid 523)
There have been numerous other members of the legislature among the descendants of this pioneer. Major Henry Champion of the War of 1812, and the Reverend George Champion, celebrated missionary to Zululand (listed in the Connecticut Genealogy vol 1, P 137), are also numbered here.
See Inventory of the Estate of Henry Champion Senior.
See picture of "Mr. Henry Champion" in Ancient Saybrook with his oxen.
His descendants; Colonel Henry, General Henry, and General Epaphroditus Champion, all won distinction in the Revolutionnary War (ibid 523) , the latter of whom was Commissary General of provisions for the US Army in 1778, and in 1793, was a member of the General Assembly. (Mack Genealogy, martin 2: 1408). There have been numerous other members of the Legislature among the descendants of this pioneer, Major Henry Champion of the War of 1812 (Champion Genealogy, 37)
"The Champion Genealogy", History of the Descendants of Henry Champion of Saybrook and Lyme, CT by Francis Bacon Trowbridge, 1891 also includes (P-6) a probable pedigree chart for Henry. Also includes Arms and Crest.
A Modern History of New London County, CT, by Marshall, Benjamin Tinkham. Lewis Historical Pub. Co. V2, biographical section, p 12. 5) states:
Henory Champion, Henry Champion, Jr. [Henry Champion was married in August, in the year 1647. Children: Saraw b. 1649; Mary b. 1651; Henery b. 1654; Thomas b. April 1656; Steven b. 1653 and d. May 1650.]
Children of Henry Champion: Hanah b. Jan. 5, 16__; Susannah b. Feb. 25, 16__, Samuel b. June 18, 169_; Alfo b. March 15, 1594; Rachel b. Dec. 1, 1697; Abigall b. June 25, 1699; Steven b. July 15, 1702; Mary b. Oct. 14, 1704. Henry Champion deceased mid July, 1704.
Henory Champion married Debrah Jones March 21, 1697/8. __ Champion deceased Feb. 17, 1708/9.
From "Names of early settlers in Lyme:" [Lyme, CT Land Records 1672-1715, Births 1693-1749, Marriages 1692-1734, Deaths 1701-1772], spelling as original:
Henry Champion was married in August, in the year 1647 to Sarah.
Henory Champion married Debrah Palmer Jones March 21, 1697/8.
More About Henry Champion: Date born 2: 1610144 Date born 3: 1610, EN.144 Date born 4: 1610, Saybrook, Middlesex, Connecticut.144 Freeman: 1670, LYME, CT. Residence: 1669, One of the founders of Lyme, Connecticut.145
More About Henry Champion and Sarah Bennett: Marriage: 21 Apr 1648, Saybrook, Middlesex, Connecticut.146, 147
More About Henry Champion and Deborah Palmer: Marriage: 21 Mar 1697/98
Children of Henry Champion and Sarah Bennett are:
Sarah Champion, b. 1649, Saybrook,Middlesex,Connecticut, d. date unknown.
+Mary Champion, b. 1651, Saybrook, Middlesex, Connecticut, d. 10 Dec 1732, Lyme, New London, Connecticut.
Henry Champion, b. 1654, Saybrook,Middlesex,Connecticut, d. date unknown.
Thomas Champion, b. Apr 1656, Saybrook,Middlesex,Connecticut148, d. 05 Apr 1705, Lyme, New London, Connecticut148.