Elizabeth Harvey Beardsley Dayton arrangement

(Sorry for the delay in posting while on vacation in the Adirondacks)

Yesterday, while doing a few Google searches, I came across a claim that Samuel Dayton “had a prenuptial agreement” with his third wife Elizabeth Beardsley. No source or explanation was provided, and I haven’t found it repeated anywhere else. Any ideas why someone might have come to this conclusion?

The only thing I can think of might be the statement that Sam was caring for “some horses for widow Elizabeth Beardsley, or good wife Daiton, for her children”—this according to the February 1669/70 Connecticut record, Entries in the old Brand Book of Stratford, 1640-1720.

Although the record does not state where the children were living, or if they were living with Sam and Elizabeth, the implication is that Sam was still caring for horses that belonged to Elizabeth’s children, even after the couple was married. Whether Elizabeth’s daughters remained with her after her marriage to Sam is not known, but it is possible that, while Sam was courting her, she made it a stipulation that the girls would not immediately be “put out,” as was customary for the time.

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