William Hoyt Fancher Letter
William H. Fancher
To: Colonel John B. Richards
Your letter of the third to Mrs. J. E. C. Brush of this city has been handed to the writer that such information as you requested might be given as completely as possible. All of the first Fanchers (there were six of them) appear to have been members or attendants of the Congregational Church. Whether they were related or not, we do not know (the writer thinks there was some connection) but writers ancestor, John, is perhaps as well known as any of them.
John Fanchers marriage to Eunice Bouton, appears in the Stamford records, copies of which are at Hartford, Connecticut. Some of his childrens births are there and in the New Canaan Congregational Church records, the original of which are in the State Library, we believe, has the baptisms of some of his children, along with those of Richards one of the six earliest located.
David, another of the six earliest, had children baptized in Stratford, in the Episcopal Church and William, the last male of the six, appears once, in the Branford Congregational Church records, when he is admitted to membership, July 1739.
One feature of John Fanchers record that might be of interest is the difference in the spelling of his name on the church records as his children are baptized. William, the second child, born Nov. 13, 1739, was baptized Dec. 16, 1738/39 as the child of John Fanshaw. The same spelling in the baptism of the next child, Nathaniel, but Abigail, fourth child, born, Apr. 15, 1744 was baptized May 20, 1744 as child of John Fansher. The other children baptized on and after July 23, 1749 are baptized as children of John Fancher.
And quoting from a letter from Enoch Lewis Fancher to his second cousin, Lydia S. Cody- dated July 17, 1897 from Newburg, N. Y. "Your letter of the 13th. Inst. Reached me yesterday; and it gave me great pleasure to peruse it. But I fear I have but little satisfactory information to impart touching on the matter of which you write. I had years ago an imperfect sketch of the Fancher genealogy but my office at 229 Broadway N. Y. was burned in 1866 and my papers and library were consumed- all save some documents kept in my safe, which were recovered. I remember my Grandfather, Abraham Fancher, who, when I was a boy, lived for some time with my father, Samuel N. Fancher, on the farm of my father in Dutchess County, at Middlebush- 8 miles north of the village of Fishkill and six miles south of Pokeepsie. I once asked my grandfather what was the name of his father- he answered John. I heard when a boy that the Fancher family came from the Hague or France after the Huguenot troubles, when two brothers crossed the Atlantic and started their life work here, somewhere on Long Island. I have no verification of this information and have not seen the name of Fancher in any Long Island records."
.... (Letter goes on with other Fanchers then near to him in Westchester and Dutchess Counties, N. Y.) ...
But as far as the writer can find, after 10 years of searching, no positive information of any kind, can be found before the original six, first stated in this letter, that would help connect with any person, persons or country.
And we sure would be pleased to locate it if possible.
(From W. H. Fancher Collection, NEHGS, Boston)
(Authors note: Wm. Hoyt Fancher was not aware of Joseph, the 7th Fancher. The baptismal records of all of the children of John "Fanshaw" and Richard "Fanshaw" recorded in the Canaan Parish Church records are as "Fanshaw". There are no Fansher spellings in these church records.