Mark Leavenworth (1711-1797) became the pastor of Waterburys
Congregational church in 1740, succeeding Rev. John Southmayd.
That same year he married Ruth Peck, granddaughter of the
churchs first minister. Following Ruths death
in 1750, Mark Leavenworth married Sarah Hull (1726-1808)
of Derby. Sarahs sister was married to the minister
of Waterburys Episcopal Church, Rev. Mansfield. Madam
Leavenworth was known for her character, dignity
and influence. Later in life she was also noted for
her two-wheeled chair.
Henry Bronsons History of Waterbury, published
in 1858, states that Rev. Mark Leavenworth owned two slaves,
Peg and Phillis. The Leavenworth household had one slave
listed in the 1790 census, and two in the census of 1800.
Peg and Phillis are both named in Rev. Leavenworths
estate inventory following his death in 1797. Peg died
in 1806, when she was 54. Phillis remained enslaved in
the Leavenworth household.
By 1810, both Mark and Sarah were dead, and their house
was the home and office of Dr. Edward Field, who was married
to their granddaughter. The 1810 census shows Phillis
as a slave in Field's household.
Mark Leavenworth served as a frontier chaplain in 1760,
during the French & Indian War, and was an enthusiastic
recruiter during the Revolutionary War. In 1793, Rev.
Leavenworth joined the The Connecticut Society for
the Promotion of Freedom and for the relief of persons
unlawfully holden in Bondage, whose mission was
to enforce the recently enacted state laws providing for