Biography of THOMAS ROOT, 
Many thanks to Esther Rancier for sharing her information on the Root family. Esther is researching in Richland and Mexico the Soul/Soule, Brace and Daniel P. Smith families, and would appreciate hearing from anyone researching these surnames.   Esther Rancier at:

For more information on the Root Family, please contact the 
Historians and Historical Societies.

 Like so many other American families, the Root/Roote family began in England.  Thomas Roote [sic], born 16 January 1604 in Badby, England, came to America before 1644.  The name of his wife remains unknown along with their place of marriage.
 His namesake Thomas Root, Jr. was born in 1644 at Hartford, CT, but he spent most of his life in Northampton, CT until his wife Abigail Alvord died in 1699.  They had five children.  He married second wife Mary Kirkland in Lynn, MA, but his children remained in Northampton. 
 His oldest son Thomas Root who was later called Deacon Root, born 11 April 1667, married Thankful Strong on 4 May 1691.  The couple resided in Northampton until ca. 1704/05 when they removed to Coventry, Tolland Co., CT.    
 They too on 29 July 1692 had a son Thomas Root who married on 18 November 1719 Elizabeth Lee who died after one child. On 9 April 1730 Thomas wed Hannah Skinner who became the mother of five children, one of whom was the next Thomas Root.
 Born in Coventry, CT this Thomas married Elizabeth Field on 24 September 1761. She had eleven children.  Of course, one was another Thomas Root, born 1 May 1776.  He wed Sarah (Sally) Ingersoll, daughter of Deodat and Mary Langdon (Stone) Ingersoll.  They married on December 1805 at Canaan, Columbia Co., NY.  They went to Mexico, Oswego Co., NY before 1811.  The records are no specific, but probably all their children were born at Mexico.  They had seven children of whom five died young.  Only two daughters survived.  According to the Ingersoll genealogy, these were their children:
1. Harriet b. 13 July 1809; d. 20 February 1810.
2. Harriet A. b. 3 April 1811; d. 14 August 1820.
3. Thomas A. b. 10 September 1815; d. 10 March 1817.
4. Thomas b. 10 August 1817; d. 31 August 1817.
5. Elizabeth b. 5 October 1818; d. 5 August 1820.
6. Julia M. b. 10 August 1822.
7. Mary J. b. 13 July 1824.
Thomas bought lot 66 from George Scriba, making Thomas one of the earliest Mexico landowners.  He came before Oswego County was created in 1816.
With the advent of the War of 1812 Thomas joined Parkhurst’s NY Militia formed largely by Mexico men.  He fought at Sackett’s Harbor.
While making his living as a farmer, Thomas, true to his religious upbringing, joined the first local church that was formed in Mexico which ultimately became Presbyterian.  His religious zeal noted, he became a Trustee beginning in 1816.  In 1821 he was elected as elder which he maintained until 1854.  Many prayer meetings were held at his house.  He taught church classes where he made quite a record.  Eleven young men he taught later became ministers.   He was usually called Deacon Root.  He spent nearly 50 years in Mexico closely associated with the Presbyterians.
On 22 June 1848 Thomas’ daughter Mary Jane, usually called only Jane, wed Edwin Dwight Loomis at Cazenovia, Madison Co., NY.  The ceremony was preformed by Rev. Ezra Scofield of the Mexico church.  Mr. Loomis was normally called Dwight.  According to the 1855 New York State census the couple did not own the farm where they then resided.  He was noted as a lifelong resident of Cazenovia. 
In the 1850 Mexico census the enumerated for the Root family was as follows:
Root, Thomas   71 farmer $3,000 CT
            Sally* 64 wife              MA
             Julia  24 daughter        NY
*All Root references to Thomas’ wife called her Sally.  While the Ingersoll family styled her as Sarah, a name entirely missing inMexico or Cazenovia records. 
By 1854 the three Roots left nearly fifty years in Mexico and removed to Cazenovia to be near daughter Jane and her family.  Thomas left behind his close Presbyterian friends.  In 1876 his former pastor, A. Parke Burgess referred to him in the florid language of the times as “Loveable and greatly beloved, removed to Cazenovia in 1854, … is still remembered, as a fruit of sanctified afflictions.” 
Thomas immediately joined the First Presbyterian Church at Cazenovia along with this wife and daughter.  Their membership was officially recorded there including a note that they were from Mexico, NY.
Wife Sally died 9 January 1859.  She was interred at the South Cemetery, two miles south of Cazenovia.
The 1860 Cazenovia census put Thomas and his son-in-law Dwight living side by side:
Root, Thomas   81   CT
            Julia   37    NY
Loomis, Edwin D.   39 farmer      NY
             Mary J.   35 wife         NY
           Thomas R. 10 son         NY
           Jerusha B   7 daughter   NY
           ugustus     7 mos. Son   NY
A few years later on 15 September 1863 at age 84 Thomas died.  He too was buried in South Cemetery near his wife Sally.
Daughter Jane and her husband Dwight Loomis had five children.  None of them ever married.
Thomas Root Loomis b. 4 December 1849; d. 1873 in Cleveland.
Jerusha Brewster Loomis b. 28 December 1852; d. 20 November 1914.
Sarah  I. Loomis b. 11 April1854; d. 7 April 1859, age 4.
Augustus Ward Loomis b. 17 October 1859; d. 12 February 1897.
Julia S. Loomis b. 3 March 1867; d. 10 November 1937.
By 1868 the Loomis family lived on 60 acres of lot 52.  They must have prospered as they were able to afford a large monument in the South Cemetery at Cazenovia.  On this stone the parents names and all of the daughters were added over the years. 
In the Cazenovia 1880 census the family was recorded thusly:
Loomis, E. Dwight          59 farmer            NY
        May J, [sic]          57 wife               NY
         Jarusha [sic]       27 school painting NY
         Sarah  J.*          15 daughter         NY
        Augustus W.        20 son                NY
Root, Julia M.              58 sister              NY
*On the family’s tombstone this name was given as Julia S. Loomis.  She was apparently called Julia.
Dwight died on 9 January 1897.  His death certificate was #990.  Mary Jane, death certificate #1491, died 20 October 1904.
In 1907 Julia S. Loomis was apparently contacted in some manner by author and Ingersoll genealogist Lillian Drake Avery who discovered that Julia had a sampler and miniature that were made by Sally (Ingersoll ) Root before her death in 1859.  Avery in error referred to her as Jane who died in 1904.  In 1907 only Julia and Jerusha remained alive from this entire branch of the Root line.  What happened to Sally’s handiwork remains unknown.
Their brother Thomas Root Loomis left Cazenovia between 1863 when he joined the church and 1873 when it was recorded that he died in Cleveland.  There has been no marriage found.  
 The legacy of this family lies entirely in the lives of the 11 men inspired by Thomas to be pastors.  It is doubtful anyone gives these Root and Loomis stones at South Cemetery a glance. 


Avery, Lillian Drake.  A Genealogy of the Ingersoll Family in America 1624-1925.  New York: Gafton, 1926.
Burgess, A. Parke.  The Old Pratham Church.  Syracuse: 1877.
Cazenovia Town Death Certificates 1884 to 1916.  Available [online]   [25 November 2003}
1868-1869 Town od Cazenovia Directory, Individuals.  Available [online]  [25 November 2003].
First Presbyterian Church, Mexico, NY.  Available [online]  [25 November 2003].
Foley, Janet Wethy.  Early Settlers of New York State, v. II.  Baltimore: Genealogical Pub., 1993.
Loomis, Elias.  Descendants of Joseph Loomis in America.  1909.
Marriages in the Town of Cazenovia 1847-1848.  Available  [online] 25 November 2003].
N. Y. Stat Census, 1855 for Cazenovia, Madison Co., NY,  p. 59.
Root, James Pierce.  Root Genealogical Records 1600-1870.  New York: the author, 1870.
Simpson, Elizabeth.  Mexico: Mother of Towns.  Buffalo: Clement, 1949.
South Cemetery, Town of Cazenovia, Madison County, N.Y.  Available [online] [25 November 2003].
U.S. Census, Cazenovia, Madison Co., NY 1860 & 1880.
U.S.  Census, Mexico, Oswego Co., NY 1820, 1830, 1840 & 1850.
WorldConnect Project.  Available [online]  [25 November 2003].

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Copyright © Feb. 2004 Esther Rancier 
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