By Cliff McCarthy, 2016
Last Update 25 January 2018
Allen Potter was born 7 April 1771, probably in New Haven, the son of Timothy and Susanna (Punderson) Potter, two of the founding members of Hamden, Connecticut. He was sometimes called “Alling Potter,” probably after his great-grandmother Sarah Alling. Hamden, Connecticut was created in 1786 from what was previously New Haven. So, it is likely that Allen was born “officially” in New Haven, but on land which became Hamden in 1786.
On 9 April 1794 in the Connecticut Journal newspaper appeared the following:
Hampden, April 9, 1794 — On Monday last, Capt. Thomas Potter, of Hampden, ordered out his company for exercising — Mr. Allen Potter called on him in the morning, and as is customary on such occasions, discharged his piece to honor his Captain, which burst into a number of pieces, one went thro’ his clothes into his breast, and one into his shoulder — by its bursting, tore off his hand, all but his thumb, which hung by a tendon; the Doctor examined his wounds, judged them not mortal, and proceeded to amputate his hand; he bore the operation with great resolution, and sent the shattered remains of his hand out to the company as a warning to his fellow soldiers. What is remarkable, that it happened on his birthday, he being 23 years old. He appears to be in a fair way of recovery.
Allen Potter’s father, Timothy Potter, died in 1799, leaving a will, which states, in part:
Whereas my son Alling Potter hath met with the misfortune to luce one of his hands my Will is that he shall have paid to him twenty pounds lawful money over and above his equal proportion with his other brothers.
Allen Potter married Patty Stow, daughter of George and Abigail (Shepard) Stow of Middletown, Connecticut. He appears as the head of a household in Hamden in the 1800, 1820 and 1830 U.S. Censuses. He was made a Freeman of the town of Hamden on 15 September 1800. In 1821-1822, he served as a selectman in that town.
Allen Potter was a farmer. In 1821, he won a premium for Best Breeding Sow at the New Haven County Agricultural and Manufacturing Show and Fair.
Allen Potter died 1 November 1831 in New Haven, according to the newspapers of the time. He was buried in State Street Cemetery in Hamden, Connecticut. Patty outlived her husband; she was listed as 71 years old in the 1850 census in Hamden, Connecticut, but no death information has been found for her.
Children of Allen & Patty (Stow) POTTER
ALLEN POTTER was born 7 April 1771, and died 1 November 1831 in Hamden, CT. He married PATTY STOW, daughter of GEORGE STOW and ABIGAIL SHEPARD. She was born 20 May 1776 in Middletown, Middlesex Co., CT, and died Aft. 1830. The children of ALLEN POTTER and PATTY STOW are:
i. MARIA POTTER, b. 7 June 1798; m. PHILIP FRAZIER.
ii. HENRY P. POTTER, b. 15 April 1800.
iii. SEYMOUR POTTER, b. 25 December 1801, Connecticut; m. FANNY; b. Abt. 1806, Connecticut.
iv. ALLEN POTTER, b. 11 March 1804.
v. JENNET POTTER, b. 28 February 1806, Connecticut; d. 23 July 1896; m. HENRY BARNES, 16 May 1825; d. Bef. 1860.
vi. ELIHU POTTER, b. 15 March 1808; d. 30 September 1815.
vii. TIMOTHY POTTER, b. 11 June 1810.
viii. ABIGAIL STOW POTTER, b. 11 July 1812, Connecticut; d. 6 December 1891, 212 Union St., Elizabeth, Union Co., NJ; m. JOHN EDWIN BEERS, 14 November 1830, Methodist Episcopal Church, New Haven, CT; b. Abt. 1808, Connecticut; d. 7 March 1883, 350 Fay Ave., Elizabeth, Union Co., NJ.
ix. ADALINE POTTER, b. 7 August 1814.
x. MARIETT POTTER, b. 1 January 1817; m. ? SABIN.
xi. JULIA A. POTTER, b. 7 July 1821, Connecticut; m. JAMES B. MUNSON; b. Abt. 1813, Connecticut.
- 1800 U.S. Census for Allen Potter (Hampden, New Haven Co., CT).
- 1820 U.S. Census for Allen Potter (New Haven Co., CT).
- 1830 U.S. Census for Mrs. Allen Potter (Woodstock, Windham Co., CT).
- Barbour, Lucius Barnes, “Middletown [CT] Vital Records” (Transcribed by Coralynn Brown, at http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~jdevlin/barbour/middletown_barbour_main.htm, 16 September 2005).
- Blake, William P., Freemen, “Selectmen, Representatives & Senators Extracted from the History of the Town of Hamden, Connecticut” (online at http://dunhamwilcox.net, 2010).
- Certificate of Death for Abigail S. Beers (Vital Records, New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, 8 December 1891).
- Connecticut Herald, 16 October 1821.
- Death Notice for Allen Potter (Connecticut Courant, 27 December 1831, as reproduced at http://www.GenealogyBank.com).
- Find-A-Grave (at http://www.findagrave.com).
- Jacobus, Donald Lines, Families of Ancient New Haven (Genealogical Publishing Co.; Baltimore, MD, 1981).
- News Article (Connecticut Journal, 9 April 1794), GenealogyBank.com.
- Shepard, Gerald Faulkner, compiler, Jacobus, Donald Lines, ed., Shepard Families of New England, Vol. 1 (New Haven Colony Historical Society, New Haven, CT, 1971).
- Will of Timothy Potter (Hampden, New Haven Co., CT, 1799, as reproduced at www.Ancestry.com).