This is very interesting! I have never run across a connection between the Hartford and Plymouth Coles before. The information on the Hartford Coles that E.B. Cole included at the end of his 1908 book says that the John Cole who d. in 1685 was b. in England, and that his father was James Cole of Essex.
James Cole of Plymouth married his wife Mary Tibbes in Devon, on the opposite side of the country from Essex. Since we don't know anything about James Cole of Plymouth before his marriage, it is possible that he had family in Essex.
However, it seems unlikely that the only contact between the Coles of Plymouth and the Coles of Hartford would be this horse sale if they were related.
E.B. Cole also has an the end-of-the-book section on Eastham Coles. In Eastham, also on Cape Cod, there was the other well-known colonial Cole family: the 3 brothers, Daniel, Job, and John, who d. unmarried in 1637. Perhaps the Hartford John Cole is related to these Eastham Coles.
--Pam Thompson, revising and updating E.B. Cole's book, The Descendants of James Cole of Plymouth