m. 16 Feb 1677
m. 7 Apr 1714
Facts and Events
Biography of Samuel Price
Samuel Price was born in Northampton, Hampshire County, or Deerfield, Franklin County, Massachusetts (his birth record not found) and is most likely taken from a family Bible record. He was the son of Robert and Sarah Webb Field Price. The historian, Sheldon, places his age at about 18 in 1704, which age would place his birth about 1686. Mr. Sheldon questions his age, but does not say why he believed Samuel to be 18 in 1704.
Deerfield Massacre of 1704
Samuel was taken captive as a child in the Deerfield massacre of 29 February 1704. Sheldon related that Samuel was eighteen years of age when captured, but this seems very unlikely and he was presumably about ten years of age at capture. Little is known of Samuel's early captivity though stories told by descendants would indicate that he lived with the Indians. The History of Sussex County, New Jersey relates that when Samuel was a "small boy he and his mother were taken prisoners by the Indians at one of the massacres in the Eastern States, and marched off together. She, being somewhat conversant with the language of the savages, soon learned from their conversation and gestures that she was to be dispatched, and immediately communicated the intelligence to her son. She told him that he must not cry when they killed her, or they would kill him too. She only marched a few rods farther before she was killed. The boy was eventually adopted by one of the squaws as her child, she having lost one of her own a few days previous. He lived with the Indians until he was twenty-one years old, and was then rescued by his friends. It was a long time before he became thoroughly reconciled to civilized society, and he sometimes expressed a desire to return to the Indians, but the feeling gradually wore away after his release".
Robert is quoted as the one who was the Indian captive in The History of Sussex County, but it was Samuel. Samuel had a son Robert who removed with Samuel to Sussex County and left heirs. The Indian story seems quite accurate from what information is available, even though the wrong name was attributed, as is not uncommon when family stories are passed down through several generations. Samuel, his son Robert, and Robert's children were all deceased when the History of Sussex County was published. If Samuel was eighteen when captured and released when twenty one he would only have been in Canada for three years, when in fact he was there for at least seven years and perhaps longer. Furthermore, his cemetery marker is inscribed "Departed this life In the Year 1768 In the 75 Year of his Age" indicating he was born in 1692/3. If Samuel was eighteen when captured he would have been born about 1685 and over aged eighty at his death. Cemetery markers are in some instances incorrect, but usually a person's age is older on a marker than they actually were, not younger. There is no birth record found for Samuel in Northampton town records with his other siblings. He was perhaps the youngest child and born after the family removed to Deerfield from Northampton. If Samuel was twenty one years of age when he returned to New England, that would place the date at about 1713 which is somewhere very near the date of his return. Samuel's tombstone places his birth at about 1696.
If he was first an Indian captive, he was released to the French who baptised him as "Louis Price" before 1710 when he witnessed a marriage. That year too, he became a French citizen of New France. In 1711 he was godfather to his niece, Marguerite Fourneau. Samuel was an apprenticed shoemaker, probably working with his brother-in-law, Jean Fourneau. What circumstance prompted Samuel's departure from Canada or when he left, will probably never be known. He was redeemed or escaped about 1714. He left behind in Canada his sister, Elizabeth, who died in November of 1714, after the birth of her 7th child.
Return to Glastonbury, Connecticut
Samuel most likely traveled back to Deerfield where his father is believed to have still been living. He later received land for his father's share in the Turner's Falls Fight. What prompted Samuel's journey to Glastonbury,Connecticut to marry there on 7 April 1714, Dorothy Fox, is unknown. Samuel and Dorothy resided at Glastonbury, Connecticut where they had four known children who lived to be adults. Nine years after their marriage on 23 Dec 1723 the town of Glastonbury voted to give the inhabitants a tract of 6,000 acres not yet granted. In the list, Samuel Price received 82 acres. Dorothy Price d. 10 Feb 1727/28 leaving behind six children. Samuel m. 22 May 1729 at Hebron,Connecticut, Sarah Perrin b. 1705/6. Her identity is yet unknown. She is not the daughter of Thomas Perrin and Sarah Phelps as some presume and may never be known for sure. The records of the Congregational Churches of Hebron, Tolland, Connecticut were lost when they burned. This occurred Oct. 8, 1747 and was caused by an incendiary hired for that purpose, a half witted young man, who was afterwards prosecuted and committed to jail for the crime. See the History of the First Congregational Church at Hebron at the website: Historic Buildings of Connecticut
Samuel sold the 82 acre grant he received at Glastonbury to Jonathan Hale in 1733. On 15 July 1735, Samuel Price, "only son and heir of Robert Price, formerly of Deerfield, deceased, which Robert was one of the soldiers in the Falls fight" received a grant of land near Deerfield. The list of soldiers in the Falls fight of 1676 near Deerfield was approved by a committee of the General Court, 23 June 1736. In the list entitled to the township granted by the General Court was Samuel Price of Glastonbury, son of Robert Price. There is no evidence that Samuel and his family ever moved to Deerfield from Glastonbury when he received the grant. Samuel was of Glastonbury, 3 May 1737 when he was appointed as one of the administrators of his son, John's estate and guardian of John's only child, one year old Eleazer Price.
Move to Sussex County, New Jersey
Sometime after May 1737 Samuel Price and his family removed from the state of Connecticut and went west to the Papakating Valley in Sussex County, New Jersey. It is related that the Price, Coult, and Gustin families were the first families to settle in the Papakating Valley east of the Blue Mountains and another record relates they were the first white settlers in the vicinity. In Northwestern New Jersey, A History of Somerset, Morris, Hunterdon, Warren, and Sussex Counties a biography relates that Mary Ann Price Couse "was a descendant of Samuel Price, who came from Hartford, Connecticut, leaving the children of his first wife in Connecticut. This Samuel was captured when a boy by Indians, and he lived with his captors until he was quite a young man. He had a brother who was a sea captain. Samuel settled a large tract of land near Frankford Plains". On 11 May 1757, his name appears on a petition to the Governor, etc., from inhabitants of Sussex Co., "the most Exposed to the Enemy of any County". They cannot work on their land or conduct business needed to maintain... Samuel, the son of Robert Price, resided at Branchville where his grandson, Dr J. C Price, is a practicing physician. He died there on 18 Feb 1768. He and Sarah are buried in the Frankford Plains Cemetery in Sussex County, New Jersey.
In Snell's History of Sussex and Warren Counties, he states that Samuel's burial is one of the earliest in the Frankford Plains cemetery. The monuments erected to their memory still stand after weathering the elements of over 200 years.