There is a marriage notice from 1871, recorded by one Waldo Heap:


Russell, Hokianga, Waimate, Whangarei, Awhitu, Mahurangi, Auckland

Seward B. Guptill, 30, R.7, M. 1871, Harriet Ann Selina Shepherd, 16.

This was several years before Simon Guptill arrived in 1882, so who was Seward and what happened to his descendants? He would have been born around 1841. Why did he marry a 16-year-old?

He was the son of Thomas Holland Guptill and Emily Dinsmore, who were married in 1830 and whose son Seward was born in 1840 in Cherryfield, Washington County, Maine. He was a cousin of Stillman, Simon’s dad.

He died a few months later on 16 January 1872 in Auckland.

His ancestors were:

Seward > Thomas Holland > William > John > Nathaniel > Thomas

Does anyone have further information about him?

Not the Guptill crest

Not the Guptill crest

If you go to a shopping mall you might find a shop that sells “family crests”. Well, there is no such thing and they are not “coats of arms”. Note that in British heraldry, a crest is presented to a specific individual. All and sundry people bearing the same name are not entitled to a copy of it – only the original recipient and their direct descendants may do so.

Why is there a fox in these Guptill crests? When one is not sure, something is better than nothing. Here is my theory: Somewhere out there is a book about the origins of surnames, and this book is used by these shopping mall entrepreneurs. They do not know that the name Guptill was invented from Gubtail, so they find these ancient Scottish individuals whose names resemble Guptill or they say that the name derives from the French word “goupil”, which means “fox”. Some Canadian Guptills have family legends about French origins, and this might be the explanation.

Here is an example of the mumbo jumbo that purports to explain the origin of “Guptill”.

A search for a Gubtail crest is more likely to produce relevant results.

England, Wales or Scotland?

Thomas (born 1675) and Nathaniel (born 1685) Gubtail (and some say two more brothers whose names are lost) arrived in Portsmouth, NH. Some say they came from Wales*; one says they came from the Isle of Man, which is off the coast of Wales. Rev. Sinnett’s genealogy says they came from England; some family crests […]

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Gubtail to Guptill

The first Guptills who landed in America were named Gubtail. By 1830 (US Census) and 1851 (Grand Manan Island, Canada, census), some branches had been spelling it as “Guptill”. In 1852 Hilliard M. Sowle, Town Clerk of Gouldsboro, ME, changed the spelling of the name from “Gubtail” to “Guptill” in the town records and it […]

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New platform

The previous platform used here was Joomla 1.0 which had been long unsupported. A script named TNG was used to display the genealogical records. Unfortunately, a data corruption or a possible failed hack attempt led to names being linked to the wrong people. Apologies to the 2-3 people who had requested access to their own […]

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