While searching for Shackford’s we came across this notice in the Fourteenth Report of the Directors of the American Asylum, at Hartford for the Education and Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb, Exhibited to the Asylum, May 8, 1830 which shows that Thomas Shackford of Boston, Mass. was admitted to the Hartford School for the Deaf in 1829 and is still as student at the school. :
The 28th Report of the Directors show that Thomas Shackford was admitted at the age of 13 in 1829 which indicated he must have been born about 1816. The document showed that the cause of his deafness was congenital, listed no parents, showed that he was supported at the school by the State of Massachusetts, and tells us that he was being trained as a mechanic.
We reviewed our Thomas Shackfords born 1815 +/- five years and find:
- Thomas Shackford, b. 30 Oct 1815 to William and Mercy (Rose) Shackford, d. 29 Jan 1874 in Boston, a Carpenter (have exact dates for his birth and death thanks to a letter his brother Abner R Shackford sent to Samuel Shackford of Chicago which does not mention that this brother was deaf)
- Thomas Shackford, b abt 1815 to Joseph and Mary (Palmer) Shackford, mariner, died July 30, 1882 in Boston, buried Rainsford Island Cemetery in Boston. (know very little about this Thomas)
- Thomas S Shackford b. 1817 in Eaton, NH, d. 1873 in Eaton, NH., have him in Eaton in many future censuses
As we continue to research Thomas Shackford’s who were deaf, we find a Thomas, age 34, listed as deaf & dumb listed in the 1850 census living in Nashville, NH in the household of Thomas Knowles, a carpenter who is deaf & dumb.
In the 1855 Massachusetts census we find a Thomas living with Abner R Shackford and his mother Mercy (Rose) (Shackford) Newell. They are living in the same dwelling as their brother William Brown Shackford.
These two censuses help us verify that the Thomas Shackford who was deaf was the son of William and Mercy (Rose), was born Oct 30, 1815 and died Jan 29, 1874. We then went back to our Ancestry trees, looked and detached some the sources that referred to a carpenter that we’d attached to Thomas #2 above and moved them to Thomas #1.
Further research indicated that Thomas Shackford was involved in the New England Gallaudet Association of Deaf Mutes – he served as chairman at a Cambridge meeting. He was also the treasurer of the Boston Deaf and Dumb Library and Lyceum Association, serving as it’s treasurer. He submitted a petition for aid from the state for this organization to the committee on Public Charitable Institutions on Jan 28, 1874.
We’re pretty certain that Thomas lived at 11 Indiana in Boston in 1869 and 1870. Other residents at the same address were William Allen, a machinist, James C Leavitt, Matilda G Leavitt, a dressmaker, and Joseph Wells, a barber. We wonder if they were also deaf.
Thomas died on January 29, 1874, probably of heart disease. He was buried in the Village Cemetery in Weymouth, Massachusetts near his sister Louisa (Shackford) Cushing.
The Deaf-Mute’s Journal honored Thomas Shackford with this statement in 1882, eight years after his death:
The late Thomas Shackford, of Boston, Mass.,
had a number of relatives and residents in Wey-
mouth, Mass. The tombstone over the remains
of Mr. Shackford, can be seen in the village
cemetery. Mr. S. was a respectable and popular
We believe that Thomas Shackford’s probate was filed in Brookline as case number 16396.
We still have these unanswered research questions regarding Thomas:
Are there any other newspaper articles mentioning Thomas Shackford’s involvement in deaf mute organizations?
Can we find the probate records for Thomas Shackford – Brookline, Massachusetts No 16396?
Can we find Thomas Shackford in the 1860 census records?
All posts on this website are a work in progress. We’d love to learn of any corrections or additions to the information shared. Also we’d love it if you’d like the post here or at http://www.facebook.com/shackfordgenealogy) as that helps share the post with others. Thanks!
1850 United States Federal Census, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire, population schedule, Town of Nashville, page 399 (penned), 200 (stamped), dwelling ???, family 147, Josiah Knowles; digital images, FamilySearch (http://familysearch.org : accessed 23 October 2013).
1855 Massachusetts State Census, Suffolk County, population schedule, Boston, Ward 10, page 30 (penned), dwelling 180, family 210, Abner Shackford; digital images, Family Search (http://www.familysearch.org : accessed 23 October 2013).
The Boston Directory, Embracing the City Record, Genera Directory of the Citizens, and a Business Directory. No LXV. For the Year Commencing July 1, 1869 (Boston: Sampson, Davenport, & Co, 1870), page 596, Thomas Shackford; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 17 October 2016).
Commonwealth of Massachusetts, The Journal of the Senate for the Year 1874 (Boston: Wright & Potter, n.d.), page 61; 1874, HathiTrust (http://babel.hathitrust.org : accessed 3 August 2014.
Find A Grave, Find A Grave, digital images (http://www.findagrave.com : accessed 22 February 2014), Thomas Shackford, Find A Grave Memorial# 94226650.
Fourteenth Report of the Directors of the American Asylum, at Hartford for the Education and Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb, Exhibited to the Asylum, May 8, 1830 (Hartford: Hudson and Skinner, 1830), Thomas Shackford; digital images, Hathi Trust (http://babel.hathitrust.org : accessed 17 October 2016.
“The late Thomas Shackford,” Deaf-Mute’s Journal (New York, New York), 30 March 1882; digital image, Fulton History (http://www.fultonhistory.com/Fulton.html : accessed 31 July 2016).
N. E. Gallaudet Association of Deaf Mutes The Proceedings of the Constitutional Committee Convened at Henniker, New Hampshire, January 4, 1854 (Bradford, Vt: Inquirer Office, 1854), Proceedings of the Meeting of Deaf Mutes Held in Boston, on the Evening of March 9, 1854; digital images, Google Books (http://books.google.com : accessed 31 July 2016
“Norfolk County, MA Probate Index 1793-1900,” database, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 13 July 2014), Thomas Shackford.
Organization of the Boston Deaf and Dumb Library and Lyceum Association,” Mexico Independent and Deaf-Mutes’ Journal (Mexico, New York), 14 November 1872; dgital images, New York Historic Newspapers (http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/ : accessed 31 July 2016).
Massachusetts, Massachusetts Deaths, 1841-1915, DEATHS REGISTERED in the Town of Brookline for the Year eighteen hundred and seventy-four, page 230, Thomas Shackford, death, 29 January 1874; digital images, Family Search (http://familysearch.org : accessed 10 August 2013).
The Twenty-Eighth Report of the Directors of the American Asylum, at Harvard, for the Education and Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb. Exhibited to the Asylum May 11, 1844 (Hartford: Case, Tifany and Burnham, 1844), ; digital images, Hathi Trust (http://babel.hathitrust.org : accessed 3 August 2014.
“U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995,” database, Ancestry.com (www/ancestry.com : accessed 9 October 2016), Thomas Shackford.
Updated 7/18/2017 to delete research question regarding an obituary in the Boston papers.
Copyright 2017 Joanne Shackford Parkes (sharing a link to this post is appreciated but please do not copy this material and paste it elsewhere)