Mary Cossitt Thomas Tillotson

Leonard Tillotson and Mary Cossitt Thomas


Leonard Tillotson was the son of Samuel Tillotson and Sarah Partridge. Leonard was born on March 11, 1802 in Tyringham, Berkshire County, Massachusetts. Sometimes his name appears spelled as "Learned." Both were pronounced the same way at that time. Leonard was the brother of my great-great-great-grandfather Daniel Tillotson. Leonard's farm land in Brunswick adjoined that owned by Daniel.

Leonard married Mary Cossitt Thomas (see photo above) in Liverpool, Medina County, Ohio on February 27, 1825. Mary was born on August 14, 1805 in New Haven, New Haven County, Connecticut. She was the daughter of Cornelius Thomas, originally a sea captain from West Haven, Connecticut, and his wife Susan (Susanna) Cossitt. Cornelius Thomas was a descendant of John Thomas (1615-1671) and his wife Tabitha of New Haven, Connecticut. Susan Cossitt was the half-sister of Orpha Cossitt, mother of Roxa Adams, mother of my great-great-grandmother Jane Ann Sexton. Susan and Orpha were descendants of French immigrant René Cossitt of Simsbury (Granby), Connecticut and his wife Ruth Porter.

Some references give Seth Thomas as the father of Mary Cossitt Thomas. This isn't correct. Seth was the name of Cornelius's father. Cornelius also named a son Seth as well. Cornelius's father Seth Thomas was a sea captain who married Mary Kimberly (1753-1834). Seth died at a relatively young age in 1782. A few years later Mary married James Blakeslee Reynolds. A pair of matching portraits of Mary and James, attributed to artist Reuben Moulthrop, date to shortly after the marriage. These portraits currently reside in the collection of the Folk Art Museum in New York City.

The ring Mary is wearing in her portrait is adorned with Masonic devices. Apparently she lost the ring in a cornfield. It was found twenty years later.

Mary Kimberly Thomas Reynolds

Mary Kimberly Thomas Reynolds,
grandmother of Mary Cossitt Thomas.
Attributed to Reuben Moulthrop.

Women of the Western Reserve (p. 716) says this about Mary Cossitt Thomas:

Mary C. Thomas was born in New Haven, Connecticut, and moved with her parents to the Western Reserve in 1816. She became the wife of Leonard Tillotson. She possessed a genial, social disposition and was called "Aunt Mary" by everyone.

Leonard and Mary had six children, all born in Brunswick, Medina County, Ohio:

All of Leonard and Mary's children eventually moved to Michigan.

Leonard Tillotson died December 1, 1862 in Brunswick, Medina County, Ohio. He is buried in Westview Cemetery. An extract from his will reads as follows:

  1. that my wife shall have the dower in all my property both real and personal.
  2. that all debts owing by me financial expenses to be paid.
  3. I give to my daughters the following sums. To Eliza Fifty-Dollars. To charlotte Fifty-Dollars. To Jane Twenty-five Dollars & To Elizabeth twenty-five dollars to be paid one year after my decease.
  4. All the property left after the above shall be paid is to be divided between my two sons William and Leonard. William to have one-third and Leonard two-thirds provided that Leonard shall remain upon the farm and attend to things for two years. I authorize my son William if it become necessary to my debts to sell my Michigan land at private sale upon such terms of credit or otherwise as he may think proper and apply the proceeds of said sale to the payments of my debts or the amounts bequested to my daughters.
  5. signed 23 Oct 1862
    witnessed by Ella Wilmot and James A. Root
    Proved 9 March 1863, 2 May 1863

Mary Cossitt Thomas Tillotson died January 18, 1890 in Elsie, Clinton County, Michigan (see her obituary). See William Kidder's Leonard Tillotson Family for more information about Leonard and his children.

Children of Leonard and Mary Tillotson
Children of Leonard and Mary Tillotson.

Left to right: Charlotte Maria Tillotson, Elizabeth Ann Tillotson, William Thomas Tillotson, Jane Minerva Tillotson, Mary Eliza Tillotson.


Photos and portions of the biographical information courtesy William L. Kidder. Biographical information about James Wait courtesy Greg Wait.


Back to Samuel Tillotson and Sarah Partridge.
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Last modified by pib on February 6, 2010.