Janet <I>Hampton</I> Rhea

Janet Hampton Rhea

East Lothian, Scotland
Death 15 Jan 1761 (aged 92–93)
Monmouth County, New Jersey, USA
Burial Tennent, Monmouth County, New Jersey, USA
Memorial ID 23642910 · View Source
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Janet was born about 1668 in Elphinstone, East Lothian, Scotland. She is believed to have been the daughter of John Hampton (Hamton), by an unknown first wife.

In 1683 she immigrated with John Hampton's family in the ship 'Exchange' from Leith, Scotland to Staten Island, New York. They soon settled in Freehold, Monmouth Co., New Jersey.

She married Robert Rhea on Jan. 9, 1690 at the home of John Hampton in Shrewsbury, Monmouth Co. Their surname was also spelled Ray.

The dates used above are from the Gregorian calendar. Quaker religious records from the period -- which retained the Julian calendar and began the year in March -- recorded Jane's marriage on the 9th day of the 11th month, 1689.

Janet and Robert had six children: David, Elizabeth, Catherine, Margaret, Isabel and Mary.

After her husband's death, Janet lived for 30 years, and joined the Presbyterian Church.

"By 1731, the hardy group of Scottish Covenanters who worshipped on Free Hill in present-day Marlboro had outgrown their small log cabin church . Because the congregation's growth was fed by new settlements in the Freehold-Manalapan area, an acre of land was purchased five miles to the south to build a new house of worship here on White Hill (said to be named for its white oak trees).

"There is a tradition that the builders planned to locate the new church on a lower part of the property and had gathered there to begin work. Whereupon a woman from the congregation named Janet Rhea seized the small cornerstone in her apron and, toiling to the top of the hill, set it down there, saying to the astonished onlookers: "Wha ever heard o' ganging doon to the Hoose o' the Lord, an no o' ganging oop to the Hoose o' the Lord?" Janet's point was made and that church, as well as the present larger sanctuary which replaced it 20 years later, was built on top of the hill.

"In Rev. Symmes' history of the church, he described Janet Rhea as a woman of strong mind and scriptural application and a devout worker in the Presbyterian community that built Old Tennent. The wife of Robert Rhea, a carpenter by profession, who came from Scotland in 1688, Janet was also newly arrived from Scotland when they were married in 1689 at Shrewsbury in the Quaker Meeting House.

"The old Rhea farm, which Robert had purchased, is now the site of the Visitors Center at Monmouth Battleground State Park. Janet Rhea Road, named in Janet's honor, is just west of the intersection of Routes 9 and 33." *

* "Going up to the House of the Lord," at http://www.oldtennentchurch.org/html/going_up_to_the_house_of_the_l.html

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  • Maintained by: John Schmeeckle
  • Originally Created by: Shanna Nicole
  • Added: 30 Dec 2007
  • Find A Grave Memorial 23642910
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Janet Hampton Rhea (1668–15 Jan 1761), Find A Grave Memorial no. 23642910, citing Old Tennent Churchyard, Tennent, Monmouth County, New Jersey, USA ; Maintained by John Schmeeckle (contributor 47662529) .