Saturday, March 30, 2019

Jemima Aldrich Benjamin

My paternal 5th great-grandmother was Jemima Aldrich Benjamin.

 Jemima was born in Mattituck, Suffolk County, New York about 1735
  • This area of eastern Long Island was known by the Indians as  “Marratooka”  then “Marrituck” and later changed by the settlers to Mattituck.  Mattituck was believed to be derived from the words “matta” no and “–tuck, –tugk” tree.
Jemima’s parents were Jacob Aldrich and Bethiah (Evans ?).  Jemima, I believe, was the youngest of 7 children.

Jemima ‘Aldridge’ would marry Nathan Benjamin, Jr. from Baiting Hollow, New York 13 February 1755 at the Mattituck Presbyterian Church. Jemima and Nathan would live in Baiting Hollow, New York about 10 miles from where she was born and raised. 

(click on image to enlarge)

What a time to be raising a family as the Revolutionary War is happening!
  • From Craven’s book The History of Mattituck, “But it is a matter of well-known history that all the people of Long Island were sorely pressed in those terrible years [Revolutionary War].”  British troops were encamped in Mattituck and officers were quartered in the houses of local residents while farmers crops were taken to feed the troops.  Many young men left to fight for freedom, some of the residents of the area left for other places,  but most residents stayed and let necessity shape their course of action. 
  • I wonder if they were a little ‘out of the way’ in Baiting Hollow?  How much were they affected on a daily basis by the British troops being in the area?

Jemima’s own husband Nathan would be one of the men who served during the Revolution.  What was that like for her while he was gone?  She had a farm to run and five children in 1775.

  • In March 1792 when Riverhead town was organized as a separate town from Southold, Baiting Hollow was considered a scattered settlement with two churches.

Jemima would give birth over the course of about 24 years to seven children:  Deborah, Nathan (my 4x great-grandfather), Mary ‘Bethia’, Phineas, Jacob, Rachel and Jemima.  Jemima’s last child was born when she was about 44 years old.

Jemima and Nathan would be married for 30 years when Nathan died in 1805

Jemima would live another 5 years and die 11 January 1810.  Nathan and Jemima are buried together in the Baiting Hollow Cemetery, Suffolk County, New York.

If you have any corrections, additions or stories to share I look forward to hearing them.
Enjoy the journey,


  1. It is something to wonder about. Their lives and how they were affected by the war. If we could only time travel and go back and meet them and see how they lived.
    Are their memorials on FindAGrave for this couple? I’d love to see them.

    1. Thank-you Diane. Oh, if we could time travel and see them living their lives. Yes, their memorials are on FindAGrave.

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  3. Long Island "Refugees," Mather, has a few paragraphs on the Benjamin family beginning on page 268. My wife is also a descendant.

    1. Thank-you! I am not familiar with the book but will definitely check it out. Please tell my cousin Hello for me.