Jared Ingersoll, 1722-1781.

Jared Ingersoll Center Church Crypt New Haven

Jared, son of Jonathan Ingersoll and his third wife, Sarah (Newton) of Milford, graduated from Yale in 1742 and set up practice as a lawyer. He was chosen Agent of the New Haven Colony to go to England in 1757 and 1764 with a paper he helped prepare, showing Parliament why the Stamp Act should not be passed. It did, in spite of his efforts. When the act became law, Ingersoll accepted the position of Stamp Master of Connecticut.

There followed a great deal of dissension over the act with a lot of anger directed at Ingersoll. People from all over the state attacked him verbally in the newspapers to which Jared wrote public letters in his defense. When the attacks escalated into threats of physical violence, Ingersoll rode from New Haven toward Hartford, on September 23, 1765, hoping to register a complaint with the authorities there. Near Wethersfield he met a band of 500 men on horseback, who took him to Wethersfield where he was pressured to submit his resignation. He was made to shout three times “Liberty and Prosperity” and to throw his hat in the air, which he did. He was appointed Judge of the Vice Admiralty in the Middle District of America in 1770 as a sort of amends for his ordeal in Connecticut, and he moved his family to Philadelphia to live. At the start of the Revolution, he returned to New Haven after being forced out of his position (again) by patriots, where he remained his death.

Remarkable for a colony tax collector who was routinely hung in effigy, Jared Ingersoll’s memorial boasts the most lavish praise found on any stone in the crypt:

In Memory of 
The Honble Jared Ingersoll Esq. 
Judge of the Court of Vice Admiralty 
in the Middle District 
in America. 
A man of an uncommon Genius 
which was cultivated 
By a liberal Education at Yale College, 
And improved by the Study of Mankind, 
And of Laws, Policy and Government, 
He distinguished himself at the Bar, 
Where his perspcuity and Energy in Reasoning 
And Equality in Conducting Causes, 
Elevated himn 
To the First Eminence in his Profession. 
Under the appointment of the General Assembly 
He was twice honoured 
With the Agency from Connecticut 
At the court of Great Britain. 
His Morals were unblemished. 
He was thoughtful, collected and sagacious, 
open and sincere, 
mild, affable, and courteous. 
Adapting himself to all 
By a rich Variety of sentiment and Expression 
Yet preserving in his whole Behavior 
A graceful and majestic Dignity. 
He died Aug. 25th A.D. 1781 
AEtat. 60. 
By his side lieth also interred, 
His amiable Consort 
Mrs Hannah Ingersoll 
Who departed this LIfe 
Oct 9th A.D. 1779 
Aged 66 Years. 

Jared’s first wife Hannah is also memorialized on the stone table marking his burial place; the grave of their infant son, also named Jared, can be seen in the foreground.  (A second son named Jared, who survived to adulthood, graduated from Yale and went on to become a nationally prominent attorney, legislator and “founding father” from the state of Pennsylvania.)  

Jared Ingersoll also appears as an unhappy footnote in our post mortem story of Warham Mather.

Jared Ingersoll Center Church Crypt New Haven

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