Father: Thomas Runyon
Mother: Martha Dunn
Spouse-1: Asle Curtis
d: ~1744 - NJ
Child-1: Vincent, Jr. - b: ~1727 - Hunterdon Co., NJ
m: Eleanor Hunt
Spouse-2: Mercy Bonham
Very few definite details are known concerning the life of Vincent Runyon, son of Thomas and Martha Dunn Runyon. He was born about 1701, probably in Hopewell Township in that part of Burlington County, New Jersey, that was organized in 1714 as Hunterdon County. It is believed that he married Alse or Alice Curtis in the 1720's. Two children, Vincent, Jr., and Martha (who later married Hezekiah (Kiar) Bonham) are attributed to them. He was identified as a new church member in 1738.1 It is likely that Alse died in 1744 as a result of an outbreak of infectious disease that may have been either scarlet fever or diphtheria.2 After his wife's death, Vincent married the widow, Mercy Bonham Smith. Tradition indicates that they remained resident in Hunterdon County their entire lives and resided on a portion of the land which had belonged to Vincent's father, Thomas. Indeed, shortly after his father's death in 1752 or 1753 (and for whom he was an executor) it is reported that Vincent bought from his mother, the eastern portion of the home plantation, land on which he was already living. (The western portion having passed to Vincent's brother, Ephraim.) It is further reported that he was elected as a town constable of Hopewell from 1743 to 1748, and during the years of 1756 to 1759, he was elected to the post of overseer of the poor. Vincent Runyon made his will in October of 1770 and likely died not long afterward, probably in the autumn of 1771.3,4 His second wife survived him until 1797. No burial place is known for either of them.Source Notes and Citations:
1a. Lida Cokefair Gedney (comp.), The Town Records of Hopewell, New Jersey, pub. by New Jersey Society of the Colonial Dames of America, printed by Little and Ives, Co., New York, NY, 1931: pg. 126. (cited op. cit. (H. E. Bonham): pg. 556.)
"'Alse Curtis' as being one of 'these few members or Baptized persons that was then Living Near here into Church Order ... At a Meeting held at the house of Joseph Stout in Hopewell Apriel 23 Anno Dom 1715.' Also mentioned was the name of Thomas Curtis as being deceased."
b. ibid: pg. 128. (cited ibid.)
Listed as a new member Oct. 29, 1737, is Vincent Runyon; Ailse is listed as a new member, Apr. 22, 1738..
back to bio.
2. Geri Halstead, "Under the Runyon Tree", Section III, June 1983, pg. 40a.
"Ailse (Curtis) Runyon may have died in the outbreak of 'sore trote' in the middle 1740s as did John (?) Smith, the husband of Mary/Marcy/Mercy (Bonham) Smith."
back to bio.
3. Howard Eugene Bonham and Jean Allin, Bonham and Related Family Lines, Bonham Book(s), 5104 Bridlington Ln., Raleigh, NC, 27612, printed by Genie Plus, Bradenton, FL, 1996: pgs. 233-7.
"1771, Nov. 9. The inventory for Vincent Runyon's estate was made by his son-in-law, Hezekiah/Kiar Bonham, and Chriveyance Van Cleave. Vincent drew his will 27 Oct 1770. A copy of the original will follows:
In the Name of God Amen. I Vinson Runyan of Hopewell in the County of Hunterdon and Western Division of the Province of New Jersey (yeoman) being of an Advanced Age but Sound in Mind and memory praise be the Lord therefore do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament in manner and form following, that is to say Firstly I recommend my Soul to Almighty God that gave it and my Body to be committed to the Earth in a Christian and decent like manner according to the Discretion of my Executors herein named.
Item. I will and Order that all my just Debts and Funeral Charges be forthwith fully paid and settled as soon as possible after my Decease.
Item. I give and bequeath unto my Well beloved Wife Mercy all my Real and Personal Estate whatsoever to her And her Heirs and Assigns forever; and I do hereby appoint my said Well beloved Wife Mercy, and Timothy Smith (of Hopewell aforesaid) joint Executors of this my last Will and Testament. And if it should happen (that at the Death of my Wife) my Grandson Vinson Runyan should become possessed of my Land or Estate, I then do hereby appoint the aforenamed Timothy Smith Guardian and Trustee for said Grandson Vinson Runyan till he shall arrive to the full age of twenty One years, And I do hereby Revoke all former Will and Wills by me heretofore made. In Witnesses whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and Seal this twenty seventh day of October in the Year of our Lord One Hundred (sic - Thousand) Seven Hundred and Seventy.
Sealed and Delivered in the presence of Hezekiah Bonham and Martha Bonham (by her mark) and Josiah Ellis.
The Inventory of the Goods and Chattles Rights and Credits of Vinson Runyan lately of Hopewell, Deceased as it made by us the Subscribers being Appraisers of the Same, this Ninth Day of November Anno Domii One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy one as follows viz.:
Cash and Apparrel 6 pounds 16 shillings 10 pence Bills and Bonds 36 " 19 " 9 " Household Goods, Husbandry Utensils, and Stock 86 " 18 " 0 " Total: 130 " 14 " 7 "
Inventory made by Chriveyance Van Cleave and Hezekiah Bonham.
Hezekiah Bonham, one of the appraisers of the above inventory being Duly Sworn Did Depose that the goods and chattles & Credits in the said Inventory set Down & Specified whereby him appraised according to their Just & true Respective Rates & Values after the best of his Judgement & Understanding & that Chriveyance Vancleave the other appraisers whose name is hereunto Subscribed was Present at the Same time and consented in all things to the Doing thereof and that they appraised all things that were brought to their View for appraisement.
Sworn this 25th Day of Nov. 1771 before me Micajah _?, Surrogate, by Hezekiah Bonham.
Mercy Bonham, Executrix & Timothy Smith, Executor of the Last Will & Testament of Vinson Runyan Dec'd being Duly Sworn Did Depose that the above Writing Contains a true & Perfect Inventory of all & Singular the goods and Chattles & Credits of the Said Dec'd as far as have Come to their Possession or Knowledge or to the Possession of any other Person or Persons for their Use.
Sworn this 25th Day of Nov. 1771 before me Micajah _?, Surrogate, by Mercy Runyan (her mark) and Timothy Smith.
Hezekiah Bonham & Josiah Ellis, two of the Witnesses to the Within Will, being Sworn, did devise that the said Vinson Runyan the Testator within named Sign & Seal the Same & heard him Publish Pronounce & Deliver the within Instrument to be his Last Will & Testament & that the Doing thereof the Said Testator was of Sound & Dispossessing Mind & Memory as far as these Deponants know & as they verily believe and that Martha Bonham the other subscribing Witness was Present and signed her Name as a Witness to the Said Will together with these Deponents in the Presence of the Said Testator.
Sworn this 25th Day of Nov. 1771 before me Micajah _?, Surrogate, by Hezekiah Bonham and Josiah Ellis.
Mercy Runyan, Executrix & Timothy Smith, Executor, in the within Testament Named being Duly Sworn Did Depose that the within Instrument Contains the true Last Will and Testament of Vinson Runyan the testator therein Named as far as they Know & as they verily Believe & they will & truly Perform the Same by Paying first the Debts of the Said Dec'd & then the Legacies in the said Testament Specified so far forth as the goods, Chattles & Credits of the Said Dec'd can thereunto Extend & that they make & Exhibit unto the Prerogative office at Burlington a true and perfect Inventory of all & Singular the goods Chattles & Credits that have or Shall come to their Knowledge or Possession or to the Possession of any other Person or Persons for their Use & Render a Just & True account when thereunto lawfully Required.
Sworn this 25th Day of Nov. 1771 before me Micajah _?, Surrogate, by Mercy Runyan, who made her mark and Timothy Smith."
back to bio.
4. Abraham Van Doren Honeyman (ed), New Jersey Archives - First Series (alt. title Calendar of New Jersey Wills, Adminstrations, Etc. Vol. V: 1771-1780), New Jersey Historical Society, Trenton, NJ, The MacCrellish & Quigley Co., Printers, Trenton, NJ, 1931: Vol. 34, pg. 439.
Oct. 27, 1770. "Runyan, Vinson (sic - Runyon, Vincent), of Hopewell, Hunterdon Co., yeoman; will of. Advanced in age. Wife, Mercy, all real and personal estate. After my wife's death, I give my grandson, Vinson Runyan, my land. and I make Timothy Smith his Guardian. Executors---wife, Mercy, and Timothy Smith, of Hopewell. Witnessess---Hezekiah Bonham, Martha Bonham, Josiah Ellis. Proved Nov. 25, 1771."
Nov. 9, 1771. "Inventory, £130.14.7, made by Chrineyance Van Cleave and Hezekiah Bonham."
back to bio.
Return to Index