My Ancestors (5) – Joost Durie (Duryea, Duryee) and Descendants – 1675 – 1919

Because I am in the process of trying to clarify information from the 1600’s on Louis Guion, I am going to hold off posting about this ancestor for now. Instead, you will learn about the Duryee side of the family, Grandpa’s mother’s  ancestors.

(1) Joost Durie, (2) Charles Duryee, (3) Jacob Duryee, (4) Abraham Duryee, (5) Jacob Duryee, (6) Joseph Woodward Duryee, (7) Ella (Duryee) Guion, (8) Alfred Duryee Guion, (9) Alfred Peabody Guion, (10) Judith Anne Guion

I have very little information on our Duryee (Durie, Duryea) ancestors so I will post information on the direct line from Joost Durie to Ella Duryee, who married Alfred Beck Guion and was the mother of Alfred Duryee Guion, my Grandpa.

In researching the origins of Joost Durie, our original Duryee ancestor, some facts remain constant but a few are not. Some of the information I have found states that he was born in (1) 1635 in Nord, France; or (2) 1635 in the Netherlands; or (3) 1650 in France; or (4) 1650 in Mannheim, Germany; or (5) 1650 in Nord, France; or … you get the picture.

Joost Durie might have been married in (1) Mannheim Germany, on 28 Feb 1671 or (2) 18 May 1673 or (3) 28 Feb 1672 in Mannheim or (4) 28 Feb 1672 in France. The most often reported date is 28 Feb 1671 in Mannheim.

All records show that he married Magdalena Le Fevre or Magdalena Antoine Le Fevre and that he died about 9 June 1727.

It is possible that Joost Durie, b. 1635 in France could be the father of Joost Durie, born in 1650 in Mannheim, Germany. With the same name, some early information could be incorrectly reported for an individual, such as birth date and place.

Consistent information is that Joost Durie (Duryea, Duryee) emigrated about 1675 on the ship “Gilded Otter” from Mannheim, on the palatin of the Rhyn. He was a French Huguenot and was accompanied by his wife, Magdalena Le Fevre. He settled in New Utrecht, Long Island, and afterwards moved to Bushwick, Long Island. He had seven sons and two daughters. He died in Bushwick, Long Island about 9 June 1727.


Charles Duryee, fifth son of Joost, was born about 1688. He married, first, Cornelia, daughter of Johannes Schenck, and second, Mary Robertson. He died in 1753 leaving his homestead in Bushwick, Long Island to his son Jacob.


Jacob Duryee, fifth son of Charles, was born 5 May 1730. On 24 Dec 1752, he married Cornelia Schenck, daughter of Peter Schenck. He lived in Bushwick, Long Island and died 19 Sept 1796.


Abraham Duryee, fourth son of Jacob, was born in Bushwick, Long Island, 14 Jan 1762. On 7 Feb 1790, he married Temperance, daughter of Corrporal Joseph Woodward, who served in Captain Isaac Sergeant’s Company, Major Ebenezer Backas Regiment Light Horse, Conn., he served in New York, September – November, 1776, was taken prisoner of war and died on the prison ship “Jersey” in New York harbor.


Jacob Duryee, son of Abraham, was born in Bushwick, Long Island, 14 Mar ____ (year left out). He married, first, Eliza Dean, and second, Hannah O’Dell. He was a veteran of the war of 1812, and an Elder and Trustee of Market Street Reformed Dutch Church for many years. He died 7 Mar 1861.


Joseph Woodward Duryee, fifth son of Jacob, was born 9 May 1823. He married, first, Eliza Pell Beadel and second, Mary Dean Wells. For many years he was a prominent merchant of New York City (See last week’s post about Alfred Beck Guion for more information on his business). He died 25 Jan 1896.


Ella Duryee, second daughter of Joseph Woodward Duryee and Eliza Pell Beadel, was born 2 July 1850. She married Alfred Beck Guion on 16 Sept 1882. They had two children, Alfred Duryee Guion and Elsie May Guion. Ella  died 5 Sept 1919.

Note of interest: Lizzie (Elizabeth) Duryee, fifth daughter of Joseph Woodward Duryee and Eliza Pell Beadel, was born 11 Oct 1863, and after the death of Arla (Peabody) Guion, spent many years living in Trumbull, taking care of the house and family. You may recognize the name Aunt Betty from some of Grandpa’s letters.

Tomorrow I will begin posting a week of letters written in 1946, beginning with a special announcement.

Judy Guion



Special Picture # 337 – Trumbull House – Then and Now – Screened Porch and Dining Room Door – 1940 – 2018

Recently I spent a night in the Trumbull House visiting with Paulette – Aunt Chiche to family and friends – and took quite a few pictures. For the next few Saturdays I will be posting pictures taken during this stay as well as older pictures of similar places taken over the years, when I have them. I hope you enjoy.



Trumbull House – Screened Porch and Dining Room Door – date unknown

Trumbull House with Screened Porch and Dining Room door – 1940

The following is a childhood memory recorded by me with my Uncle Dave.

I don’t know how to explain it because the house, the Big House, has changed so much with renovations but  there used to be a screen porch on the southeast corner of the house and there was a window there that looked from the stairs out onto the porch. Don and Gwen (Stanley) were there and Dick and I were talking, talking, talking, talking, talking. We had been warned on two or three occasions to quiet down and go to sleep. If Dick has told this story it will be a different version than mine because what happened was the last one to speak when the last warning came, was me. So, I was sent upstairs away from the rest of them and as I went up the stairs, I kicked at the window to warn them that I was going to cause trouble for them. Anybody else and everybody else will tell you that I kicked in the window on purpose, but at any rate, I never bought that story. It was a warning. I kicked it into warn them but I broke it. The next thing I knew, my father came charging up the stairs gave me a good spanking and sent me to bed. When I got into bed, I began to feel something sticky down around my right foot. I was already crying and upset, and when I checked it, I’d cut my foot on the glass, which made me feel still more hurt and angry, and suffering such a terrible injustice. I was probably nine or 10 when that happened, maybe eight, well it had to be after my mother had died and I was seven she died.

Tomorrow I’ll begin posting letters written in 1946. The most notable event will be the birth of Grandpa’s first granddaughter in France.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Hello Again – Sprucing Up The Place – April 2, 1944

The Old Homestead

                    The Old Homestead

Trumbull, Conn.   April 2, 1944

Hello again:

Another week has rolled around and finds me again seated at my faithful typewriter, withal a little lame in the back after having wrestled with numerous baskets of incinerator refuse which Ced laboriously filled and would have emptied himself undoubtedly if he had not been summoned so summarily back to the wilds of Anchorage. I wanted to get the yard cleaned up a bit so as to look somewhat presentable for Easter. Jean, too, has been busy indoors, bless her heart. The kitchen floor looks as clean and nice as any time since the new linoleum was first laid, and she has washed the curtains which the kitchen oil stove managed to make quite drab.

Yesterday, I spent some time out front cutting down Maple shoots which had started up in between the arborvitae hedge which is so ragged any way that I think it would look better taken down altogether. What do you think? Then there is the cellar and the barn and the storm windows to be taken down and the screens to be put up. Two or three of you “father’s helpers” better quit the army and come home and give me a hand. Oh, yes, I also spent part of yesterday afternoon applying another coat of tar on the canvas roof over the laundry. In getting the can of tar out of the cellar I had left the cellar door open which was an invitation to Skipper and Susan to explore the cellar. Seeing their father’s oil barrel handy, they promptly took great delight in letting all the kerosene in said oil barrel run out of the cellar floor, much to their mother’s delight and my glee.

Dave is deserving of my appreciation, and he gets it. He has not let a week go by, no matter how busy or tired he is, without writing. In the letter received this week he mentions the possibility of his being transferred to another camp soon and hopes it might be to Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, where the chances of his being able to come home occasionally would be brighter than at present.

Daughter Marian writes to say that Lad is being kept pretty busy. They are still house hunting but are finding it difficult to find a suitable place accessible to the Camp.

A letter from Dorothy (Peabody) reports Anne (Peabody) Stanley) has recently returned from a visit to Vermont, Gweneth (Stanley, Anne’s daughter)  having been ill with a cold. Burton (Peabody, Grandma Arla’s brother) is still in Washington. Helen (Peabody) Human)and Ted  (Human) are still in New York. Ted is doing a series of engineering articles for MacGraw Hill, Helen meantime taking over the complete management of the apartment leaving Dorothy ample opportunity to take it easy in recovering from her operation.

Art Mantle has been awarded the Purple Heart Medal for wounds received in the battle of the Salvo Islands. Dan’s letter about the Red Cross has recently been published in the Bridgeport Post and did it’s part in helping to put the drive over the top. Although Trumbull’s quota was double what it was last year, we even topped that by $1000. And that seems to be all – – a rather uninteresting letter, I’ll admit, but at least it’s something. Can you-all say as much? Happy Easter greetings to all of you. Remember the jellybean hunts you used to have as kids? No jellybeans on the market now. There’s a war on. Have you heard?

The same Dad

Tomorrow, another Special Picture of the Trumbull House, Ten and Now. On Sunday, another Ancestor, Louis Guion, my original French Ancestor who arrived in this country in December of 1686. His story may take a few weeks.

Judy Guion

Friends – Biss Writes to Ced and A Quick Note From Lad – March 31 and April 2, 1944

Elizabeth (Biss) Guion Zabel

            Elizabeth (Biss) Guion Zabel

Friday afternoon

2:07 P.M.


Dear Ced: —

I am going to do a mean thing to you and write a very short note, as it is well into the PM already and I have touched nothing at all in the house. Besides I have just finished writing five other letters and am beginning to get tired. I wrote Alfred, Aunt Dorothy, Uncle Burton, Peg and Viv. Viv was disappointed because she didn’t get to see you while you were home. I am writing mainly to find out how you made out with your deferment and whether or not this new law, of all under 26, will spoil your deferment for you – I hope you will be able to hold off until June and maybe you will be able to keep out altogether.

I got a letter from Aunt Dorothy this morning and she is up and around again – that is what started me on this writing spree. I had been meaning to write her ever since I found out she was laid up. I am beginning to feel like my old self again, thank goodness. Butch is supposed to be in bed with a cold but I think he is out more than in – I have told him to get back to bed so far about 100 times at least. Marty just came in from outside with wet feet and pants so he has to go to bed as soon as he is through  in the bathroom. They’re going to have their pictures taken tomorrow night in their sailor suits. I wish it would get nice and warm out – we have had a couple of warm days so far and it just makes one inpatient for more of them. Marty is calling so I guess I had better close here.



P.S. – My arm is so tired it is stiff and sore – that is my real reason for stopping.


Because this note from Biss  is so short, I am also going to add a short note from Lad.

Lad Guion

Lad Guion

Sun., April 2, 1944

Dear Dad, Aunt Betty, etc.: –

Tomorrow is the big day. I shall be 30. Getting along in years, eh ! Got your gift and letter also. Thanks, Dad, and when we have a few spare moments we shall write an answer to your letter enclosing the checked suggestions.

Our mailing address still remains the same (491, Pomona) but we have moved into an apartment in a town called Ontario, about 2 1/2 miles east of Pomona. It reminds me of the Ives’s place as it was before Fred Stanley bought it. We only have a couple of rooms, but we have worked all day today and it is not even half completed. Gee, there are so many things to be done, you wonder if they will ever be finished. In our case it is almost futile, since just about the time we have it fixed to our satisfaction, Uncle Sam will move me to some other camp, as has been the case ever since we were married. The place is at 3132 W. A. St., Ontario. It is on the main road to Los Angeles and the trucks keep Marion awake still, but I guess I’m used to lots of noise or I’m too tired at night not to sleep. Anyway, I sleep. It is a couple of minutes after nine, but since I have to get up at 4:30 AM, nine o’clock is my bedtime, and I sure can use one tonight. Give my love to Aunt Betty and the rest and I’ll see you all sometime soon.


Tomorrow, another letter from Grandpa covering news of Trumbull family and friends. 

Judy Guion

Army Life – Dan Writes About the American Red Cross Club in London – March 27, 1944

The following article appeared in The Bridgeport Post, Bridgeport, Conn., on Monday, March 27, 1944.


Red Cross on Call for All Servicemen in London, Corp. Guion Tells Family

The American Red Cross in London is “a composite Travelers’ aid, shopping guide, nursemaid, companion, entertainer,  tour conductor, encyclopedia, Dorothy Dix and hostess, all at the beck and call of any G. I. in uniform”, according to Corp. Daniel B.  Guion, of Trumbull, now stationed in London.

“Because it occupies such a prominent place in my mind today, I am dedicating this letter to the ARC (American Red Cross)”, Corp. Guion recently wrote to his father, Alfred D. Guion, of Trumbull.

The clubs in London have been a Godsend to every American serviceman who has come to London,  wanting to get the most out of his visit, the Trumbull soldier continues. “Maps, accommodations, education, information, entertainment, all are the daily diet of the ARC.”

Rooms and meals, he says, are available at minimum cost. “But nicest of all, a new ARC club has just opened quite near the place rather different from the downtown London clubs, more like a USO in that there are no overnight facilities to attract the Grand Central Terminal crowd, that prevails in the regular clubs, coming and going at all hours of the day and night, unkempt from travel, gas masks and musette bags drooping from weary shoulders as they lineup for lodgings.”

This club, designed for men stationed in the area rather than for transient servicemen, appeals strongly to Corp. Guion’s sense of the historic and dramatic.

On Site of Old Palace

“This local ARC is housed in a building built by Christopher Wren for Queen Anne, in the early 18th century,” he explains.  “It is built on the site of an old palace,  which, causes it to fairly reek of atmosphere and tradition, despite the modern comforts that have been added for its present function.”


Great figures of Britain’s past, who have stopped there, or played their parts in the immediate vicinity, include 21 Kings, four queens, Chaucer, Woolsey, Sir Walter Raleigh, Francis Bacon, Spencer (“he read the Faery Queen to Queen Bess”) and Dean Swift.

Open Fireplace

“There is an open fireplace in virtually every room. Library, music room, dining room, information desk, all contribute notably to our comfort indoors, while spacious lawns, secluded bowers, gardens and aged walls lend an aura of romantic antiquity to the grounds around it. Glimpses of barges and boats can be caught through the trees that line the further edge of the lawn past which a river flows.

“By fortunate coincidence I am able to take advantage of this club during the daylight hours all this week, because I have begun working on a shift job which changes hours periodically.”

Corp. Guion is not new to world travel. As a U.S. government engineer, he traveled through a good bit of South America, spending some time working in Venezuela, and before entering service, was given an assignment in Alaska. He had his early education in Trumbull schools, attending Central High School, and was graduated from the University of Connecticut. He has been overseas with the U.S. Army for several months.

Mr. Guion, Sr.,  is an enthusiastic volunteer worker for the Trumbull branch, Bridgeport chapter, American Red Cross, which he serves as director of public information.

“We all know the Red Cross is doing a grand job, here and abroad.” he says. “But it gives an added boost to your morale to hear directly from your own boy how extremely well the organization is serving our men overseas.”


Tomorrow,, a letter from Jean (Mrs. Richard) to Ced in Alaska, and on Friday, a letter from Elizabeth (Biss) to Ced, one of her older brothers.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Letters to Each Son (2) – Dear Dave and Dan – March 26, 1944

Dear Dave:

It was good to get your letter and know you are holding up the Guion tradition in good style. Sorry you did not do so well in the shooting but there are other things of more importance. Paul is all pepped up over the fact that he went through his mental test with flying colors. 150 is the average; 180 is tops, which no one has obtained yet. He got 174 and thinks it will mean a rating. I saw Mr. Mehigan in Herb’s (Haye’s Grocery Store) the other day and he told me to tell you “Sonny” was being shipped out to Little Rock where he will have something to do with the Ferrying Command. Ed Dolan says Mrs. Boyce was in the other day and asked all about you boys, particularly Ced, but you are her pet. It’s certainly odd how all the women fall for you. They must like ‘em fresh. George is having considerable trouble with the folding machine. He can’t seem to remember how to make even a simple fold now so lately we have to fold everything by hand. Postage rates have gone up – – no more 2 cent local rates. Everything is three cents now and airmail eight cents instead of six. Taxes on toilet articles now is 20% and taxes on movies have also been doubled. Dan writes he is enjoying himself, despite war and the Army. When he wrote on March 12th he didn’t seem to have been bothered by the bombing of London we read about but says his plans to go to Cambridge so far have not materialized.

Dear Dan: (last but not least)

Daniel (Dan) Beck Guion

I almost fell through the floor into Kurtz’s cellar when I found for V-Mail letters from you at one fell swoop in the mailbox. The flooring is pretty sturdy however so you can try again without fear of the consequences. Ced reports he is staying at the house of one of the Woodley Airways pilots, one McDonald by name, a new house. He has a fair sized room and garage for his car. A few days before he got back, Rusty had departed for the far North for about a year.

He said when he wrote that the snow was 20 inches deep and still snowing. Skiing was good. On the way back fairly long stops at Ketchikan, Wrangell and Petersburg enabled him to take short tramps into the interior with his camera. They arrived at Juneau at 8:45 of a Sunday morning. As Art runs to Juneau on Tuesdays and Fridays, Ced was all set to fool around until Tuesday but figured he should promptly book his reservation anyway. I quote: “I went right over to the Juneau agent and asked if the Tuesday trip was loaded. The fellow said he thought it was but asked if I would like to go today. I asked who was going and he said Art Woodley was in town. Was I glad to hear that. Well, he was soon located at the Baranof Hotel. His wife and father-in-law were also present. It seems that they had some business to attend to and stayed over from the Friday trip on that account. They greeted be very pleasantly and at 11 o’clock we arrived at the airport for the return trip to Anchorage.

The following notice appeared in the Bridgeport paper Thursday: Funeral services for Walter H Rubsamen, 46, of White Plains Rd., Trumbull, who died of a heart attack yesterday, will take place, Friday at 2 PM. Mr. Rubsamen, who had been suffering from a heart ailment for several years, collapsed at Main and Bank streets at 1:50 PM yesterday and was dead before medical assistance arrived. Mr. Rubsamen is survived by his wife, a daughter, Barbara-Lee, and a son,, Walter Sanford, a student at Choate school, Wallingford, where he will be graduated in June. He has been accepted for Navy duty on graduation.”

To each and all of you, severally and individually, one and indivisible:

Will you please detach the bottom part of his paper and with your next letter home, mark the various items, after having thoughtfully gone over them, and indicate which, if any, you would like to have me send you from time to time. Thanks.


*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

Pads     Ink     Eraser     Paste     Clips     Ruler     Pencils     Calendar     Candy     Chewing Gum     Tobacco     Magazines     Bridgeport newspaper     Camera     Film     Coat hangers     Shoe polish     Kleenex     Shampoo or Tonic     Soap     Tooth powder     Camphor Ice     Deodorant     Shaving Materials     Shirts     Sox     Handkerchiefs     neckties     pajamas     slippers

State sizes, colors, brands, etc. preferred

Other Items Listed Here *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

Tomorrow a newspaper article about the American Red Cross club in London, quoting Dan.  On Thursday, a letter from Jean (Mrs. Richard) to Ced in Alaska, and on Friday, a letter from Elizabeth (Biss) to Ced, one of her older brothers.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Letters to Each Son (1) – Dear Lad, Dick and Ced – March 26, 1944

We are now moving forward to 1944 when the United States is fully engaged in the war effort. So is the Guion family. All five sons are serving Uncle Sam in one way or another. Four are in the Army and Ced is in Alaska, repairing airplanes for the military in Anchorage. His boss continues to request deferrals for him and so far, has been successful. Grandpa writes a weekly letter and sends carbon copies to all his sons (and one daughter-in-law). This is the first half of a three page typed letter. The second half will be posted tomorrow.

Trumbull, Conn. March 26, 1944

Dear Lad:

Lad Guion with friend - Pomona - 1944 (2) head shotYou will receive this letter within a few days, either way, of your birthday – – your first birthday as a married man. (Incidentally, tomorrow is the anniversary of the day your Mother and I were married 31 years ago) there is so much that one would like to put into a goodwill greeting on such occasions that must remain unsaid because outside of a few gifted persons we ordinary folks are unable to put our thoughts on paper – – to say all that is in our hearts and minds.

Today Elizabeth and Zeke, with Butch and Marty, took dinner with us. As I watched the children with their cute little ways and words, the days of my own children’s childhood came back and I lived over again those all too short happy years when all of you were youngsters and your Mother and I watched the unfolding of your young ideas and lives. Even as I write here in the alcove, there burns in the fireplace part of the seat of the little, old wooden high chair that all of you children successively used. It went the way of all things that have outlived their usefulness, being part of the rubbish Ced cleaned out of the attic recently. It gave me a bit of a pang I admit, as it went up in flames, to contribute a bit of warmth in its last service to the family.

One of the lessons that the years have taught me is the futility of impatience with things as they are. Perhaps you of all the children have this quality in larger measure. If there is one time we all need patience it is now. The cruel war drags on. Each of you undoubtedly feels he is contributing so little toward hastening the day of victory with all that it means to you individually, that at times it is most discouraging, far from home and loved ones, to keep up a good heart; but know that each day that passes inevitably brings one day nearer the day of peace and all that goes with it. When blue and inclined to feel bitterly tired of it all, I have found it a good tonic to deliberately set about reviewing in my mind all the good things on the credit side of the ledger that we can count as ours. Try it sometime and you’ll find the good far outnumbers the evil. To you and Marian goes a father’s loving thoughts on this reaching of another milestone on life’s journey.

Dear Dick:

Richard (Dick) Guion

Richard (Dick) Guion

After getting dinner started this morning, I took the wheelbarrow and shovel to try to repair the damage to the driveway caused by a recent hard rain which had guttered the driveway opposite Laufer’s in a most distressing manner. As I busily shoveled some of the stone from under the big flat stone at the bottom of the concrete steps leading to the front door, to serve as fill, a car came by and stopped. A face adorned with a sailor hat leaned out of the window and greeted me. It was Cy Linsley. He asked about all the boys and is quite happy in his job concerned with radar and radio tube technical work. Pete, he says is also in the Navy.

Jean tells me you have a new job which keeps you quite busy with clerical details. Haven’t much time to devote to Whirlaway these days, I take it. Mr. Covell came into the office the other day to try to sell me some life insurance (He didn’t.) and asked about you, making me promise to give you his regards when I wrote. Smoky is outside the window and when I asked if he remembered you, he vigorously wagged his tail, which of course in dog language means “Yes”.

We had the worst snowstorm of the entire winter the other day, so deep that I did not try to take the car to Bridgeport, fearing I would not be able to make the drive at night, and when I stepped out of the back door on the way to the bus, a Robin in one of the apple trees over in Ives old orchard was singing lustily. I guess he knew that in spite of the snow Spring is here.

Dear Ced:

Your interesting letter written on the typewriter, much to Aunt Betty’s delight, arrived safely in spite of the fact the envelope was addressed to me “address unknown”. I am tempted to address this letter to you, followed by the letters T&DES, meaning of course Tax & Draft Evasion Specialist, but I thought maybe the local board might take exception to such a liberty. By the way, I am still using your ration book. Enclosed is a sample of the one point tokens they are using now for change.

I called up the Buick place the other day and they said they had the rubber mat for the car now but no exhaust pipe. I asked them to hold the mat and let me know as soon as another pipe came in. From Mrs. McClinch I learned they would take the pipe uncrated for Alaskan shipment. By the way, you speak of being rather short of funds. If I can help out let me know and I will get a check off to you by return mail. Did Art (Woodley) come across with the promised bonus? Please let me have Rusty’s address if you think of it when you write; also of course, I am anxious to see some of those self-portraits you speak up. By the way, your letter came without being reviewed by the sensor, as in the past.

Tomorrow, the second half of this letter, with a special request for each of the boys.  On Wednesday, an article printed in the newspaper about the American Red Cross club in London. On Thursday, a letter from Jean (Mrs. Richard) to Ced in Alaska, and on Friday, a letter from Elizabeth (Biss) to Ced, one of her older brothers.

Judy Guion