Our Chapter's Namesake
Faith Robinson was born on December 13, 1718, the daughter of the Rev. John and Hannah (Wiswall) Robinson of Duxbury, Massachusetts. Faith was a member of a prominent Massachusetts family as well as a descendent of John and Priscilla (Mullins) Alden. Her son, the painter John Trumbull, wrote in his autobiography, she was a “great granddaughter of John Robinson, the father of the pilgrims, who led our Puritan ancestors . . . out of England.” Then, as now, being a Mayflower descendant carried weight in New England.
Faith Robinson married Jonathan Trumbull on December 9, 1735. Their marriage and Jonathan Trumbull’s education, as well as work for the government, placed him among the leaders of Connecticut society. Jonathan Trumbull served Connecticut as Governor of the Colony of Connecticut, 1769-1776 and continued as Governor of Connecticut, 1776-1784.
Married at age seventeen, Faith became the mother of six children, many of whom were significant contributors to early American history.
Governor and Mrs. Trumbull and their family supported the Cause of Freedom publicly by both word and deed. Faith Trumbull’s husband was the only colonial governor to support the American Revolution and was known as the "patriot governor."
The Trumbulls and their sons, Joseph and David were instrumental in supplying the continental armies, the militia and the French forces with supplies of every kind. Their son, John, is known for his Revolutionary War paintings. John became one of our nation’s most noteworthy early American artists, known for his historical scenes of the American Revolution including the "Declaration of Independence," one of his most notable works. The painting above, showing his parents, was finished in 1783.
We learn the following from Life of Jonathan Trumbull, Sen., Governor of Connecticut By Isaac William Stuart pages 513, 514:
“During the War—after divine service on a Sunday, or on a Thanksgiving Day—contributions were often taken in church for the benefit of the Continental Army. Cash, finger-rings, ear-rings, and other jewelry—coats, jackets, breeches, shirts, stockings, hats, shoes, every article in fact of male attire —besides groceries in great variety—were frequently thus collected—in New England particularly, in large quantities.* Upon one such occasion in Lebanon Meeting House, Connecticut, after notice given that a collection would be taken for the soldiers—Madam Faith Trumbull rose from her seat near her husband —threw off from her shoulders a magnificent scarlet cloak—a present to her, we hear on good authority, from the Commander-in-chief of the French Allied Army, Count Rochambeau himself—and, advancing near the pulpit, laid it on the altar as her offering to those who, in the midst of every want and suffering, were fighting gallantly the great Battle for Freedom. It was afterwards taken, cut into narrow strips, and employed, as red trimming, to stripe the dress of American soldiers."
The accompanying painting, "Faith Trumbull Donates Her Cape," is used with permission of the artist, David R. Wagner, of Connecticut.
Faith Robinson Trumbull died on May 29, 1780. She is buried in "Old Cemetery," also called Trumbull Cemetery, in Lebanon, Connecticut.
The plaque pictured here was erected by Faith Trumbull Chapter DAR at the "Old Cemetery" in Lebanon, Connecticut, in 1993.
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