In reviewing my wife’s family tree today, I noticed that one of the names on her tree was Hitchcock and that the family was from Connecticut. Since there is a Hitchcock Lake in Wolcott, I wondered if there was a connection. After a bit of research I was able to determine the following:
My wife’s connection was through Ester Hitchcock (1796-1874) who was the great-grandmother of her great-grandfather, Dennis Birley VanDeCar (VanDeCar being my wife’s maiden name). I was able to trace the heritage of Ester back five more generations to Matthias Hitchcock who was born in England in 1610.
Hitchcock Lake was named after Shelton Hitchcock (1822-?) who lived in that part of Wolcott and who had some significant land holdings. The original name of the lake was “Waterbury Reservoir.” The name change happened sometime between 1893 (when the name on official maps was still Waterbury Reservoir) and 1946 (when the USGS map had it named as Hitchcock Lake). The change probably was due to the fact that when the “Green Line” trolley began services to this area in 1913, the stop in the southern end of Wolcott was in an area known as Shelt’s because that was where Shelton had his home. (As an aside, Shelton Ave. also received its name from this same individual.) Shelton’s great*4-grandfather was the same Matthias Hitchcock who is referenced above – making him my wife’s 5th cousin (5 times removed).
My connection to Shelton is much closer than my wife’s. Shelton’s mother was Julia Frisbie (gee, where have we seen that name before in Wolcott history?), and his grandfather was Daniel Frisbie who is my great*4 grandfather. That makes Shelton my first cousin (4 times removed).
Thus, that means that my wife and I have yet another connection between our families and that that connection was established in Wolcott when her distant Hitchcock relative married my not-so-distant Frisbie relative. And we can both claim a relationship to a significant Wolcott resident whose name continues on through the name of one of the largest bodies of water in town (Cedar Lake is 150 acres, Scovill Reservoir is 121 acres, Hitchcock Lake is 110 acres).
Oh, the tangled web we weave!