Thomas Welles

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Thomas Welles
1st Treasurer of the Colony of Connecticut
In office
Succeeded byWilliam Whiting
2nd Secretary of the Colony of Connecticut
In office
Preceded by Edward Hopkins
Succeeded byJohn Cullick
Deputy Governor of the Colony of Connecticut
In office
In office
In office
17th Governor of the Colony of Connecticut
In office
Preceded by Edward Hopkins
Succeeded by John Webster
20th Governor of the Colony of Connecticut
In office
Preceded by John Winthrop the Younger
Succeeded byJohn Winthrop the Younger
Personal details
Born10 July 1594
Stourton, Whichford, Warwickshire, England
Died14 January 1660
Wethersfield, Connecticut
Spouse(s)Alice Tomes
Elizabeth Deming Foote

Thomas Welles (c.10 July 1594 – 14 January 1660) is the only person in Connecticut's history to hold all four top offices: governor, deputy governor, treasurer, and secretary. In 1639, he was elected as the first treasurer of the Colony of Connecticut, and from 1640–1649 served as the colony's secretary. In this capacity, he transcribed the Fundamental Orders into the official colony records on 14 January 1638, OS, (24 January 1639, NS). [1]

The Connecticut State Treasurer serves the office of treasurer for the state of Connecticut.

Connecticut Colony English, from 1707, British, possession in North America between 1636 and 1776

The Connecticut Colony or Colony of Connecticut, originally known as the Connecticut River Colony or simply the River Colony, was an English colony in North America that became the state of Connecticut. It was organized on March 3, 1636 as a settlement for a Puritan congregation, and the English permanently gained control of the region in 1637 after struggles with the Dutch. The colony was later the scene of a bloody war between the colonists and Pequot Indians known as the Pequot War. Connecticut Colony played a significant role in the establishment of self-government in the New World with its refusal to surrender local authority to the Dominion of New England, an event known as the Charter Oak incident which occurred at Jeremy Adams' inn and tavern.

Fundamental Orders of Connecticut

The Fundamental Orders were adopted by the Connecticut Colony council on January 14, 1639 OS. The fundamental orders describe the government set up by the Connecticut River towns, setting its structure and powers. They wanted the government to have access to the open ocean for trading.



Welles was born in Tiddington, Warwickshire, England around 1590, the son of Robert Welles and Alice Robert Hunt of Stourton, Whichford, County Warwick, England, born about 1543. [2] [3] He married Alice Tomes on September 28, 1615 at St. Peter's Church, near Banbury, Oxfordshire, England. She was born around 1593 in Long Marston, Gloucestershire, England, the daughter of John Tomes and Ellen (Gunne) Phelps. A brother of Alice Tomes, also named John Tomes like his father, was a faithful royalist who during the escape of Charles II sheltered him in his home on the night of 10 September 1651 when the king was a fugitive after the Battle of Worcester.

Tiddington, Warwickshire village in United Kingdom

Tiddington is a village in Warwickshire, England, about 1 12 miles (2 km) east of the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon.

Drayton, Cherwell village in the United Kingdom

Drayton is a village and civil parish in the valley of the Sor Brook in Oxfordshire, about 2 miles (3 km) northwest of Banbury. The 2011 Census recorded the parish's population as 242.

Banbury market town and civil parish on the River Cherwell in Oxfordshire, England

Banbury is an historic market town on the River Cherwell in Oxfordshire, England. The town is situated 64 miles (103 km) northwest of London, 37 miles (60 km) southeast of Birmingham, 25 miles (40 km) south-by-southeast of Coventry and 22 miles (35 km) north-by-northwest of the county town of Oxford. It had a population of 46,853 at the 2011 census.

After the death of Alice, Welles married again about 1646 in Wethersfield, Connecticut. His second wife was Elizabeth (Deming) Foote, [4] who was a sister of John Deming [4] and the widow of Nathaniel Foote (who founded Wethersfield). Elizabeth had seven children by her previous marriage; there were no children from the second marriage.

Wethersfield, Connecticut Town in Connecticut, United States

Wethersfield is a town located in Hartford County, Connecticut, United States. It is located immediately south of Hartford along the Connecticut River. Its population was 26,668 in the 2010 census.

John Deming was an early Puritan settler and original patentee of the Connecticut Colony

Nathaniel Foote, was an early English immigrant and surveyor to Connecticut who was born in Colchester, England. He was part of the settlement party that founded Wethersfield, Connecticut, the oldest town in that state. Foote's wife, Elizabeth, was the sister of John Deming, considered one of the "fathers of Connecticut." In 1635, he surveyed the boundaries between his hometown of Wethersfield and Hartford.

The first appearance of Governor Thomas Welles's name in Hartford was on 28 March 1637, according to the Connecticut Colonial Records. Welles came to Hartford with Reverend Thomas Hooker in June 1636. Some believe a copy of a grant in which he is named confirms this statement. He was chosen a magistrate of the Colony of Connecticut in 1637, an office he held every successive year until his death in 1660, a period of twenty-two years. He was elected deputy governor in 1654, and governor of the Connecticut Colony in 1655, and in 1656 and 1657 was deputy governor to John Winthrop the Younger; in 1658 governor, and in 1659 deputy governor, which position he held at his death on 14 January 1660 at Wethersfield, Connecticut. [5]

Hartford, Connecticut Capital of Connecticut

Hartford is the capital city of Connecticut. It was the seat of Hartford County until Connecticut disbanded county government in 1960. The city is nicknamed the "Insurance Capital of the World", as it hosts many insurance company headquarters and is the region's major industry. It is the core city in the Greater Hartford area of Connecticut. Census estimates since the 2010 United States Census have indicated that Hartford is the fourth-largest city in Connecticut, behind the coastal cities of Bridgeport, New Haven, and Stamford.

Thomas Hooker Puritan minister

Thomas Hooker was a prominent Puritan colonial leader, who founded the Colony of Connecticut after dissenting with Puritan leaders in Massachusetts. He was known as an outstanding speaker and an advocate of universal Christian suffrage.

John Winthrop the Younger Governor of the Saybrook and Connecticut Colonies

John Winthrop the Younger was an early governor of the Connecticut Colony, and he played a large role in the merger of several separate settlements into the unified colony.

It is thought that he was buried in Wethersfield, Connecticut. Some sources indicate that his remains were later transferred to the Ancient Burying Ground in Hartford. In either case, his grave is presently unmarked. His name appears on the Founders of Hartford, Connecticut Monument in Hartford's Ancient Burying Ground.

First Church of Christ and the Ancient Burying Ground church building in Connecticut, United States of America

The First Church of Christ and the Ancient Burying Ground is a historic church and cemetery at 60 Gold Street in Hartford, Connecticut. It is the oldest church congregation in Hartford, founded in 1636 by Thomas Hooker. The present building, the congregation's fourth, was built in 1807, and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1972. The adjacent cemetery, formally set apart in 1640, was the city's sole cemetery until 1803.


The children of Thomas and Alice Welles who lived into adulthood were: [3]

See also


  1. Norton, pp. 19–21
  2. Siemiatkoski, Donna H (1990). The Descendants of Governor Thomas Welles of Connecticut, 1590–1658, and His Wife, Alice Tomes. Gateway Press.
  3. 1 2 Mathews, Barbara Jean (2015). The Descendants of Governor Thomas Welles of Connecticut and his Wife Alice Tomes, Volume 1, 3rd Edition. Wethersfield, CT: Welles Family Association. ISBN   9781312874794.
  4. 1 2 Deming, pp. 3–8
  5. 1 2 Mathews, Barbara J. (April 2000). "The Wills of John Welles and his Father, Governor Thomas Welles" (PDF). Welles Family Association. Retrieved 19 March 2010.
  6. Raymond, Marcius D, p. 17
  7. Case, L. W., p. 35
  8. 1 2 Treat, p. 31
  9. 1 2 Treat, p. 33
  10. 1 2 Treat, pp. 20–31
  11. 1 2 Siemiatkoski, Donna Holt (1990). The Descendants of Gov. Thomas Welles and his Wife Alice Tomes Through their Son Thomas Welles (c. 1625–1668) of Hartford Connecticut. Gateway Press.
  12. "Ruth Rice (1659–1742)". Edmund Rice (1638) Association. Retrieved 19 March 2011.

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Political offices
Preceded by
Edward Hopkins
Governor of the Connecticut Colony
Succeeded by
John Webster
Preceded by
John Winthrop the Younger
Governor of the Connecticut Colony
Succeeded by
John Winthrop the Younger