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The Hazard Family of Rhode Island

Updated: Feb 4, 2019

The Hazard Family of Rhode Island 1635-1894. The subject of the book is Thomas Hazard. It is an excellent resource, packed full of information about the Hazard family of Rhode Island.

The author, Caroline E. Robinson gives the following summary of the Hazard family:

“These few meager facts are about all that can be found at the present day of the founder of the Hazard family in America. But Thomas R. Hazard, in his Recollections of Olden Times, has given an account of the family that goes back, even beyond the name; its European founder being the Duke de Cherante, living about 1060, on the borders of Switzerland. From the Duke de Cherante he has given an interesting account of the changes in the name, until towards the close of the eighteenth century, when it was, and still continues to be, written Hazard. Willis R. Hazard has given us the chief characteristics of the family. He says: ‘The Hazards are a strongly marked race, handing down and retaining certain peculiarities from generation to generation. One is, a peculiar decision of character, a certain amount of pride, and a pronounced independence, coupled with a slight reserve. Physically they are strongly marked. Generally speaking, they are of good stature and vigorous frames with rather a square head, high forehead, brown hair, blue eyes, straight or aquiline nose, and with will shown by a firmly set jaw. Their complexion is fair, a little inclined to florid.’ Few families in Rhode Island have a brighter record than the Hazard family, where, if greatness is not always found, sobriety, honesty, and integrity make even the humblest lives worth studying; and when one finds, as is often the case, a retiring, unpretentious modesty combined with greatness, he must be pardoned for his enthusiastic admiration for the old family tree, that still sends out vigorous shoots after more than two hundred years of growth in America.”

The book is filled with lots of information about the family, but contains a critical error on page 91, which indicates this may not be my line of Hazards. Robinson states that William Hazard, born 1753, had a son Edward, who married in 1773 to Susannah Havens. The marriage of Edward and Susannah is well documented in Rhode Island's vital records. If William was born in 1753, however, his son may have been born about 1773 - but it would be impossible for his son to have married in 1773. Is there some confusion between William Hazard and William Hazard Jr.? Perhaps William Hazard married twice?

Additional research is needed to correct this error. Stay tuned for more!

Source: The Hazard family of Rhode Island 1635-1894: Being a genealogy and history of the descendants of Thomas Hazard, with sketches of the worthies of this family, and anecdotes illustrative of their traits and also of the times in which they lived, by Caroline E. Robinson, 1833-1907; Daniel Berkeley Updike, 1860-1941, Published 1895. (Alternate Link)


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