Abigail Carey Ellery

Abigail Carey Ellery
Second Wife of William Ellery – Signer of the Declaration of Independence
1742 – 1793 A.D.

William Ellery married Abigail Wanton Carey (or Cary), in 1767, three years after the death of his first wife. She was his second cousin and twenty-five years old at the time of their marriage. Mr. Ellery had prospered greatly in the practice of his profession and was accounted wealthy. He also stood high in the estimation of his townsmen and was keenly alive to their interests. From the beginning of the agitation against the encroachments of the British ministry, he had been outspoken to favour [sic] the rights of the people. He was made to suffer greatly for this. His house was Ann Remington Ellery's husband William Ellery, Signer of the Declaration of Independenceburned and his property greatly damaged at an early stage of the struggle but he did not give up his seat in Congress and return home as he would have been justified in doing; he left his own business affairs to get along as best they might while he continued service as one of the most indefatigable workers in Congress.

After the war, his own State made him Chief Justice, and after the adoption of the Constitution and the election of Washington to the Presidency he was made the collector of customs at Newport; the competence he derived from these offices proved sufficient to make his declining years easy and comfortable.

Eight children were born to William Ellery and his second wife, but only two of them lived to grow to maturity. Abigail Ellery died in 1793 and was survived by her husband many years, he dying in 1820 in the ninety-third year of his age.

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Reference: The Pioneer Mothers of America: A Record of the More Notable Women of the Early Days of the Country, and Particularly of the Colonial and Revolutionary Periods by Harry Clinton Green and Mary Wolcott Green, A.B. Third Volume, Published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons.