Stephen Leighton, my third great grand uncle, was born on this date in 1804 in North Yarmouth, Maine, the eleventh of twelve children born to Andrew Leighton and Mary Weymouth, and their ninth son.
His father, known as Captain Andrew, had laid out the county road from Falmouth to Portland, and was a prosperous lumber trader, dealing in ship's timber. In 1800, he built and operated Leighton's Tavern on the Gray Road in West Cumberland. It was a popular stop on the stage route to Lewiston.
Stephen's two oldest brothers, Joseph, born in 1789, and Andrew, born in 1790. were both lost at sea off the Georges Bank in 1815, while aboard the privateer Dash. Stephen would have been 10 or 11 years old at the time, old enough to share in the family's loss.
|Illustration : The Story of DASH |
Freeport (Me.) Historical Society
Nonetheless, young Stephen did not retreat from a life aboard ship, and it is noted that he, too, was lost at sea. Assuming youth of his generation frequently put to sea in their early teens, one imagines him perishing around age 16, in 1820. No written recollection has been found.
Leighton, Perley M. A Leighton genealogy: descendants of Thomas Leighton of Dover, New Hampshire. Compiled by Perley M. Leighton based in part on data collected by Julia Leighton Cornman. (Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1989.) p. 282.
The Story of DASH (http://freeporthistoricalsociety.org/the-story-of-dash)
This is the 35th in a series, “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks,” coordinated by Amy Johnson Crow at No Story Too Small.
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