Tombstone Tuesday – September 1, 2020 – Anna Payne Leete

Anne Payne was the daughter of Reverend John Payne(Paine) and Anna Underhill on July 31, 1621 in Huntingdonshire, England. Baptised in the Hail Weston parish where she would also wed William Leete at the age of fifteen on August 1, 1636. They had ten children; Mary (1638), John (1639), Andrew (1643), William (), Abigail (), Caleb (1651), Grataine (1653), Peregrine (1658), Joshua (1659), Anna (1661).

The William Leete Family came to America in on July 13, 1639 landing in New Haven Connecticut members of the Rev. Whitfield’s Company. William Leete was one of the signers of the Plantation Covenant signed while abroad the ship. They settled in Guilford and will was the clerk for the plantation from 1639-1662. William was very prominent in colonial government in Guilford eventually becoming governor of Connecticut in 1678.

Three hundred and fifty two years ago, Anne died on September 1, 1668 in Guilford, Connecticut. She is listed in Findagrave as possibly buried in the Ancient Burial Ground in Hartford Connecticut with her husband , the Governor, William Leete but that seems unlikely to me. He became Governor long after she had died.

She is more than likely buried in the cemetery which was known as the The Village Green Cemetery in Guilford. The cemetery was located at the Village Green on Broad Street located in the center of town at the site of the Guilford Congrational Church which was organized in 1643.

It is in this cemetery where most of her children and their spouses were buried. Joshua Leete ,an infant son who was born in 1659 and died in 1660, is buried there and so was Caleb Leete who died and was buried there in 1673, five years after his mother. Fifteen other Leete family members are known to have been buried here.

It was the town’s cemetery until 1800 when it was decided to obliterate this cemetery and remove the stones. Some of gravestones were removed by families and other have just disappeared through the passage of time. There is no way to know for sure where she is buried. There are no pictures either.

Rest in Peace Anne. I am proud to descend from this family who play such an integral role in the founding of our nation.

Love, Jan

Anne was my ninth Great Grandmother on the paternal side of the family.

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