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Haskell and Allied Families

Source: Herbert A. Hull, “Haskell and Allied Families,” Americana 21[1927].

[page 449]

(The ROSSITER Line).

Arms — Argent, an alligator vert.

Crest — An eagle displayed with two heads proper.

The ROSSITERS are an Anglo-Norman family which settled in Rathmacnee, County Wexford, at the invasion of 1172, and continued one of the chief gentry and landed proprietors in the baronies of Forth and Bargy, in the County, until deprived of their estates by Oliver CROMWELL. In 1280 Edward I, John DE ROUCESTER, was paid two pounds for services to the king; in 1345 Edward III, John ROUCESTER, was summoned, with many other gentry of Mexford, to attend the Lord Justices with horse and arms; and in 1364-65, Rover RAWCETER was summoned to attend with men-at-arms and hobellers at the Duffry; John ROSSITER, Esq., of Rathmacnie, died April 8,

[page 450]

1627, leaving three sons, Thomas, Philip, and Marcus, who were deprived of all their lands.

Lower in his “Patronymica Britannica” says that the name ROSSITER is a corrupted pronunciation of Wroxter, a parish in Shropshire, the ancient Roman station of Uriconium. Bardsley agrees with Lower in the above statement, but adds that in most cases it is probably of local origin meaning “of Rochester,” the change being to ROUCESTER and then to ROSSITER.


II. Dr. Bryan (or Bray) ROSSITER, son of Edward ROSSITER, died at Guilford, Connecticut, September 30, 1672. He came to America with his father, Edward ROSSITER, in the “Mary and John,” in 1630. He was made freeman at Dorchester, Massachusetts, in 1631; in 1639 removed to Windsor, Connecticut, where he was town clerk; came to Guilford, buying Mr. Samuel DESBOROUGH’s estate, in 1651. It is said that he was the only physician in Connecticut Colony at the time of his removal to Guilford. His medical practice was very extensive, and he is supposed to have performed the first autopsy in Connecticut. Shortly after removing to Guilford, he fell out with Governor William LEETE and the majority of the townspeople, very probably because his own son-in-law was not chosen to the vacant pulpit. The difficulties increased, and at the time of the struggle over the union with Connecticut, he placed himself at the head of the party favoring immediate union. He was admitted as a freeman in Guilford, June 8, 1654, and though he left the town for a time, when KILLINGWORTH settled there, he returned and died there. Where he studied medicine is unknown. He was also a surveyor, and laid out the lands about the Hammonasset River, in 1656. While at Windsor he served as the first town clerk in 1639. Dr. ROSSITER married Elizabeth, surname unknown.

Children: 1. Samuel. 2. John. 3. Elizabeth. 4. Timothy. 5. Joanna, of whom further. 6. Peter. 7. Abigail. 8. Josiah, born in 1646. 9. Susannah, born November 22, 1652. 10. Sarah.

III. Joanna ROSSITER, daughter of Dr. Bryan and Elizabeth ROSSITER, was born in July, 1642, and died at Sandwich, Massachusetts, October 12, 1702. She married, November 7, 1660, John COTTON. (See COTTON II.)

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