Friday, March 22, 2019

Edward Doty, Pilgrim Immigrant

Well, probably he wasn't a Pilgrim in the traditional sense.  He would have been required to go to religious services, of course, but there's no evidence he joined the church, that I can find.  So while he was definitely a passenger on the Mayflower of 1620, and he was definitely an immigrant, we don't know what his religious beliefs really were, if any. 

We also don't know who his parents were, or where in England he was from.  Really, the first thing that is known for certain is that he was on the Mayflower, signed the Compact, and was an indentured servant of Stephen Hopkins.  If he didn't know Hopkins earlier, then he surely would have been entertained on the trip by Hopkins' takes of life in Jamestown, Virginia, and his shipwreck adventure on Bermuda in 1609.  It is believed that he was married prior to his known marriage in Plymouth Colony, but whether that was in England or in America is unknown.  It's also suspected that he had served most of his indentureship before arriving at Plymouth Colony. 

We do know that he married Faith Clark, daughter of Thurston or Tristam and Faith Clark, in 1634/5.  She was 19 years younger than he was, and Dory had "snagged" her pretty much fresh off the boat, as the Clarks arrived in 1634. By this time Doty had made something of a name for himself, and not necessarily for a good reason. 

He and fellow servant Edward Leister had such a falling out, a few months after the Mayflower landed, that they actually dueled with sword and rapier.  Each was wounded, apparently not seriously.  For this, the Pilgrim leaders decided that the two should be bound together for 24 hours, head and feet together, so that they could neither eat nor drink during that time.  The two complained so piteously that they were released after only an hour, but this was the first in a pattern of court appearances and complaints that Doty was involved with, usually as the plaintiff.  He seems to have had great faith in the American justice system, even as limited and as primitive as it was during his lifetime.  If someone wronged him, he expected legal redress, and he also expected to pay his fine if he was found to be in the wrong.  The records prior to 1632 are mostly lacking, so we don't know what happened regarding the courts as a younger man, but after that his name is frequently noted. 

Sometimes, his name was recorded for a good reason.  He was granted land several times, he sold some of it and bought more, and he paid his taxes.  He also was counted as fit for military duty, so he would have had armor, guns, and swords as required  We can assume that he patrolled the area when the natives were nearby, and probably that he went on military expeditions expecting trouble from the native Americans.  However, perhaps because of the court cases, perhaps because of his personality or education, he apparently never held any colony offices, even though he was made a freeman in about 1633.  Had he not been involved in all those court cases, he would have been one of the nearly invisible population. 

Edward and Faith had nine children, with the last born in about 1653.  Edward died just three years later, leaving Faith with a large family to raise.  She must have done a decent job of raising them, because she didn't remarry (to John Phillips) for another ten years, on March 14, 1666/7.  She died on or before December 21, 1675.  Edward's estate was valued at close to 138 pounds, which was not terrible but probably not terrific, either. 

Edward Doty was undoubtedly a colorful character, and we may not know his whole story.  But he came, he survived, he persisted, and he died here after going from indentured servant to landowner.  For that, he deserves to be honored. 

The line of descent is:

Edward Doty-Faith Clark
Samuel Doty-Jeane Harman
Sarah Doty-Josiah Standish
Hannah Standish-Nathan Foster
Nathan Foster-Elizabeth Lansford
Jude Foster-Lydia M
Betsy Foster-Josiah Whittemore
Mary Elizabeth Whittemore-Joseph Holbrook
Fremont Holbrook-Phoebe Brown
Loren Holbrook-Etta Stanard
Gladys Holbrook-Richard Allen
Their descendants



Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Holbrook line: Edward Hawes, Immigrant

I;m writing this post more as a plea for help than as an imparter of information  Edmund Hawes is a most confusing man.  There may have been two, or even three, Edmund Hawes, so you can understand my confusion, I hope.  The Edmund Hawes who interests us in the one who died in Dedham,Norfolk, Massachusetts on June 28, 1686,  It's frequently stated that he was buried in Yarmouth, Barnstable, Massachusetts but this must have been a different Edmund Hawes.  Ours was consistently in Dedham and not in Yarmouth.  There are records in existence that, when looked at side by side, show Hawes to have been in both localities at the same time.  The evidence is pretty clear that our Edmund came to Dedham and stayed there. 

So, we don't know the age or birthdate or parents of our Edmund, for sure.  It is believed that he came from Solhull, Warwickshire, England and that his parents may have been Edmund Hawes and Jane Porter.  We do know he married Eleanor Lombard (otherwise know as Eliony Lumber) in 1648 in Dedham.  Edmund may have been a cutler and he was surely a farmer.  He signed petitions regarding town limits and agreements with native Americans (dispute as to whether or not Indians had actually sold the land, apparently.  It was a question to be debated for the next two hundred or so years, all across the frontier as the frontier moved west),

We know that Edmund and Eleanor had at least nine children.  We know Edmund was a prosperous farmer, which is a good thing, given the size of his family.  The author of a speech presented in 1895 to the "Genealogical and Biographical Society of New York City" believed that Edmund was a good Puritan, based on the Biblical names of each of the children.  He referred to finding Edmund's name on tax rates, and on land transactions, and as a woodreeve and a fence viewer.  A woodreeve is defined as being the overseer of a forest, and a fence viewer required landowners to keep their fences in good condition.  It is likely that Hawes also had to participate in some sort of militia, whether it was a training band or something more informal. 

Edward Hawes was the salt of the earth kind of guy, I think.  He didn't get into trouble with the law, he paid his taxes and he participated in the town meetings, signing petitions as needed.  He was likely less younger then 50 when he died, and Eleanor must have had quite a time with 9 young ones, born from 1648 to probably close to the time Edward died.  Eleanor died about four years later, but I don't know what became of the children.  Neither have I found a will or administration papers. 

This isn't much of a sketch for an ancestor who could well have thousands of descendants.  It tells the bare minimum.  The only hint we have that he could read or write is that he signed his name on the petition papers previously mentioned, but he left us a legacy never the less.  He was a hard working, God fearing man and we can honor him by trying to learn more about him.

The line of descent is

Edward Hawes-Eleanor Lombard
Nathaniel Hawes-Sarah Newell
Elizabeth Hawes-Samuel Wilson
Rebecca Wilson-Jonathan Wright
Molly Wright-Amariah Holbrook
Nahum Holbrook-Susanna Rockwood
Joseph Holbrook-Mary Elizabeth Whittemore
Fremont Holbrook-Phoebe Brown
Loren Holbrook-Etta Stanard
Gladys Holbrook-Richard Allen
Their descendants 

Friday, March 15, 2019

Holbrook line: Michael Metcalf, Immigrant

Michael Metcalf is one of several ancestors who are "new" to me, found when I finally broke through the Molly Wright Holbrook brick wall I've had for many years  When I started researching him, I found that he's an interesting man who came to New England with his wife, nine (!) children, and a servant.  More than that, there is some information about him prior to his coming to New England, which is a bit unusual.

It is not certain who Michael's father was.  Many genealogists think his father was the Rev. Leonard Metcalf.  Others think that Leonard was probably is uncle.  Regardless, we know that he was born at Tatterford, Norfolk, England sometime between 1586 and 1591, depending on which argument you believe.

Facts that seem to be documented are that he came from a fairly substantial family, probably Puritan, and that his occupation was a dornix (tapestry) weaver.  One article said that he owned a cloth factory in Norwich that employed 100 people  He was made a freeman there on June 21, 1618.  He married Sarah Elwyn, the daughter of Thomas Elwyn and Elizabeth Benslye on October 13, 1616.

Perhaps because Michael was a factory owner, he caught the attention of the Star Court run by Bishop Wren, and suffered persecution because of his religious beliefs.  Finally, in 1636 he decided to leave for the New World.  He may have actually left then by himself but been driven back to England by bad weather.  The following year, he and his wife and 9 surviving children (two had died young) came to America.  The faily almost immediately went to Dedham, where he was admitted a townsman in 1637, admitted to the church in 1639, and was a selectman in 1641.  He was also a schoolmaster, which indicates he must have had considerable schooling in England.

Sarah died November 10, 1644, when her youngest child was 9 years old.  Michael needed a wife, and soon married the widow Mary Pigge, who had several children of her own  It must have been quite a household.  Michael died December 27, 1664, leaving land and books to his sons and varying monetary amounts to his daughters, and to one of Mary's daughters.  Probably those who got the lesser amounts had already received dowry gifts.  I didn't find a copy of the appraisal of the estate, and I also didn't find anything that clearly states an occupation in Dedham.  Michael did own a clay pit, used for brick making, but I have no idea whether this, along with farming for the family, was enough to support them

I want to do more research about Michael, particularly to learn more about his religious life at Dedham, why he became a schoolmaster at age 70 or so, and what his occupation was here  There may be more stories, too, waiting to be uncovered.

The line of descent is:

Michael Metcalf-Sarah Elwyn
Mary Metcalf-Henry Wilson
Ephraim Wilson-Rebecca Sumner
Samuel Wilson-Elizabeth Hawes
Rebecca Wilson-Jonathan Wright
Molly Wright-Amariah Holbrook
Nahum Wright-Susanna Rockwood
Joseph Holbrook-Mary Elizabeth Whittemore
Fremont Holbrook-Phoebe Brown
Loren Holbrook-Etta Stanard
Gladys Holbrook-Richard Allen
Their descendants


Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Allen line: Jonathan Brewster 1593-1659 Immigrant

I haven't written about Jonathan Brewster before now because I wrote about his somewhat famous father, Elder William Brewster earlier, and my feeling was that the father kind of outshines the son.  I may be wrong about that.  Jonathan Brewster is a fascinating man in his own right, and he was almost a Mayflower ancestor, arriving on the Fortune in November of 161.  But let's start at the beginning 

Jonathan was born August 12, 1593 to William and Mary (last nae still uncertain) Brewster in Scrooby, Nottinghamshire, England.  By the time he was born, his parents were already ardent Puritans and Separatists, and it was after his father had been jailed and released for his religious beliefs that the Pilgrims fled to Amsterdam and then Leiden, Holland (The Netherlands).  Jonathan accepted citizenship there in 1617 and may have planned to make his life there.

 However, he married and his wife and baby died, and that convinced Jonathan to join his family in New England.  (It's possible that he had already been planning to come, of course).  It should be noted that not every genealogist believes that there was a first marriage.  It would be interesting to know but that fact isn't essential to the rest of our story.  In Leiden, Jonathan supported himself and any family he may have had by ribbon making, which was a craft that several of the Pilgrims were practicing.  He probably didn't have a real occupation in England, given that he was 17 years old when he went to Holland, and jobs were not plentiful for Separatists in England.  Possibly he was a day laborer. 

About three years after coming to New England, Jonathan married Lucretia Oldham, daughter of William and Philippa Sowter Oldham on April 10, 1624.  By this time, Jonathan may already have been trading with the natives on an informal basis.  Later, he became a trader and was allowed to set up a trading post in what became Connecticut. 

We know that Jonathan had quite an education, or at least read widely, because one of his other interests was alchemy.  He is mentioned several times in the book "Prospero's America" by Walter W. Woodward.  The book is more of the story of John Winthrop Jr and his study of alchemy, but Jonathn is mentioned several times there as having correspondence with Winthrop, as is William White, our ancestor on the Holbrook side  Alchemy could probably be thought of as an attempt by Christians to learn the secrets of nature in order to use them for profit and also to prepare the world for the Second Coming, which would only happen when the world was good enough.  If an individual alchemist was good enough and pious enough, worked very hard and studied constantly, God might provide him with the clues needed to understand all of nature, and incidentally, to make gold out of base metals  Not every alchemist was trying to find gold.  Some concentrated on making medicines with minerals as their base, as opposed to herbal medicines.  I don't know how much Jonathan was involved in any of these particular ventures, but he does seem to have been involved with an iron works that Winthrop had developed.

I've found indications that Jonathan also served as surveyor, as a deacon or/an an elder in the church, in military service during the Pequot War, as a deputy to the General Court and as an assistant to the governor of Connecticut (don't know which governor).  He was also an attorney, and was styled "Gentleman".  Probably about 1649 but possibly earlier, he moved his family to Pequot, which became New London, and served there as town clerk  He was censured for setting up an Indian trading post without permission but in 1652 the deed from the Indian sachem to Jonathan was approved and he was allowed to continue the trading post.  All in all, Jonathan was a busy man.

John and Lucretia had at least 8 children together, the last born in 1641 in Duxbury, Plymouth Colony.  He died August 7, 1659 at Norwich, New London, Connecticut and is buried at Brewster's Neck, Preston, Connecticut.  I haven't yet found a copy of his will, but I would expect that it would show a considerable net worth since I know he had debts owed him of hundreds of pounds at one time  There is much more to be found, or to be learned, about Jonathan and his story deserves to be found and told.  He was a remarkable man. 

The line of descent is

Jonathan Brewster-Lucretia Oldham
Hannah Brewster-Samuel Starr
Thomas Starr-Mary or Mercy Morgan
Mary Starr-John Chester
Thomas Chester-Sarah Eldridge
Bathsheba Chester-Jonathan Havens
Betsy (Elizabeth Chester) Havens-John Starr
John Havens Starr-Clarissa Falley
Harriet Starr-John Wilson Knott
Edith Knott-Edward Allen
Richard Allen-Gladys Holbrook
Their descendants

Friday, March 8, 2019

Allen line: John Lamb 1628-1690

Is it breaking the rules to call John Lamb an immigrant?  He was only two years old when he came to New England, so he had no say at all in whether to come.  Yet, not understanding the purpose of being uprooted and joining his parents on a small and dark ship, he shared the voyage and shared the wonder of arriving in a world totally unlike anything he knew in England.  From the eyes of a two year old, this would have been a big deal, and yes, I think we can call him an immigrant.  Besides, he's in the Allen line and I don't have many opportunities any more to write about this side of the family. 

It would be interesting to know how closely his parents, Thomas and Elizabeth Lamb, could follow the typical Puritan methods in raising children under the circumstances of sailing across the ocean.  Were they stern, were they relaxed?  Certainly they, especially Elizabeth, would have been watchful as there were many ways for little ones to get hurt, or worse, on a ship.  The other women on board would have helped, surely, but it wouldn't have been an easy job.  Actually, our ancestor John  had sibling Thomas with him, so at least there was someone to play with. 

John was born to Thomas and Elizabeth on or before August 1, 1628 at Barnardiston, Suffolk, England.  He would have been baptized in the local church, which had parts dating back to the twelfth century, so this was a very old village indeed.  Likely there was quite a bit of family in the area, as that is common for small villages, so again one wonders what the pioneer immigrants were thinking. 

John came with his parents to Roxbury, Massachusetts, where Thomas died in 1646.  Five years later, in 1651, John settled in Springfield, Massachusetts where he was made a freeman in 1654.  He was a wheelwright and perhaps an "East Indian trader".  That may mean he owned part of a ship that traveled to the East Indies, or it could have other meanings.  It gets a little dicey here because he is supposed to be living in Springfield and in Kittery, Maine at the same time.  I suspect there were two John Lambs, and they have been a bit intermingled in this part of the story. Perhaps the man in Kittery was the one who was engaged in trading.  More research needs to be done on this.  

In Springfield, he became an important part of the town.  He was a fence viewer, a surveyor of highways, a sealer of weights and measures, a sergeant of the Westfield Garrison during King Philip's War, and he  had the fifth seat in the church (seats were assigned according to wealth and piety as well as status in the town). 

John was married to Joanna Chapin, daughter of Samuel Chapin and Cicely Penny) about 1650, and they had eleven children, with the last being born in 1674.  Joanna died in 1683 and John died September 28,1690, just two or three years after he had married Lydia Wright Bliss Norton.  His estate was valued at a little over 421 pounds, which was respectable indeed.  He had more animals than many of his neighbors would have had, several good sized parcels of land, more tools and implements, and more household goods than would have been common.  John Lamb had done all right for himself. 

The line of descent is:

John Lamb-Joanna Chapin
Samuel Lamb-Rebecca Bird
Samuel Lamb-Martha Stebbins
Eunice Lamb-Martin Root
Martin Root-Ruth Noble
Ruth Root-Samuel Falley
Clarissa Falley-John Havens Starr
Harriet Starr-John Wilson Knott
Edith Knott-Edward Allen
Richard Allen-Gladys Holbrook
Their descendants

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Holbrook line: James Cutler, Immigrant

Researching James Cutler, or at least reviewing some of the information found about him on line, was interesting.  Usually if a man has been researched well enough to be included in Robert Charles Anderson's Great Migration series, then there isn't much controversy left.  I have learned that there is some controversy involving which of James's last two wives would be the mother of our Jemima Cutler Snow.  I think The Great Migration is most likely to be correct.  But then I wondered why others were choosing a different mother for Jemima Cutler.  It seems that James's third wife, Phoebe Page, had a bad reputation.  It may have been deserved.  So perhaps those who want a pretty genealogy instead of an accurate one may have chosen to go with wife #2.  But let's start at the beginning. 

James is thought to be the James Cutler, son of Thomas and Anne Cutler, who was born or baptized at Sproughton, Sussex, England on May 21, 1606.  That's as much as we know of his childhood and early years, except that Anne died in 1613, when James would have been about 7 years old.  He was one of six children born between 1600 and 1610, so perhaps Anne died giving birth, or recovering from another birth, in 1613.  His father lived until 1640, so he would have been there, probably with a new wife, to guide the children as they grew and to possibly place them in a position to learn a trade, although James doesn't seem to have practiced a trade as such in New England. 

James arrived in New England with his wife Ann and was in Watertown by November 6, when his first son was born.  He and Ann (possibly Cakebread, but not proven) had four children in Watertown, but Ann died sometime on or before September 30, 1644.  He then married Mary, widow of Mary King, and they had three children.  Her date of death is uncertain but was sometime after Sarah's birth in 1653.  With his third wife, Phoebe Page, whom he married probably before 1661, he had four children. 

Wife Phoebe Page was an interesting woman and it is impossible at this distance to say how much, if any, of the "gossip" about her is true.  She sued once and won a defamation case in Watertown, when it was stated that she was pregnant and unmarried.  There is at least one statement that she was the Phoebe Page who was whipped in Long Island for fornication, but I didn't find a date for that so have no idea how to evaluate it.  She was noted as being "past her prime" when she married James Cutler, and apparently brought at least one child to the marriage with her.  Note that James Cutler was also past his prime! 

James's only occupation that I could locate was "planter".  He is described in his later years as poor, but he was able to give land (not enough to live on, but enough to help) to several of his sons during his lifetime, and still had assets to bequeath when he died.  He left Watertown in 1653 and settled in the part of Cambridge known as Cambridge Farms and later as Lexington, where he died in 1694.  He had been appointed surveyor of highways in Watertown for the two years just before he moved.  He didn't hold offices after that, but his farm was located on the outskirts of Cambridge so it may have been a matter of convenience as much as anything else.  Phoebe apparently died before he did, as she is not mentioned in his will.

James's will was written November 24, 1684 and proved August 20, 1694.  His estate was valued at a little over 108 pounds, of which 100 pounds was real estate.  Remembering that he had previously given land to sons, and apparently dowry to one or more daughters, this was not a poor man, although he was not well off, either.  He was kind enough in his will to leave something to the children of his second wife, and to a daughter "Phoebe" was was apparently the daughter of third wife Phoebe Page, but not his child.  He actually left her a number of items which "must not be brought into my inventory", indicating that these items were likely Phoebe Page's when she came to the marriage. 

I think I like James Cutler.  He was willing to take a woman "past her prime" as a spouse, he cared for his step children as well as his children, and he made something out of (presumably) nothing when he was able to acquire and farm the land he didn't really know how to cultivate (not an insult; no one in New England really knew what they were doing as far as farming and raising animals went.  It was a different climate and a different soil, and a different growing season.  It took time to adapt.) .  Although there is little indication that he was a good Puritan (or for that matter, a bad one), he did have a Bible in his estate when he died.  Let's give the man a break, and a thank you!

The line of descent is:

James Cutler-Phoebe Page
Jemima Cutler-Zerubabbel Snow
William Snow-Elizabeth Stevens
Lucy Snow-Josiah Whittemore
Josiah Whittmore-Betsy Foster
Mary Elizabeth Whittemore-Joseph Holbrook
Fremont Holbrook-Phoebe Brown
Loren Holbrook-Etta Stanard
Gladys Holbrook-Richard Allen
Their descendants


Friday, March 1, 2019

Holbrook line: John Tidd, Immigrant, of Woburn

John Tidd is a bit of a mystery, or at least his earlier years are a mystery.  Some, but not all, genealogists say that we was the John Tidd who was christened at Hertford, Hertfordshire, England on October 18, 1594.  If so, he was the son of John Tidd and Anna or Agnes Dane.  This date would  fit in well with the proposed marriage date of 1616 for John to marry Margaret.  Margaret is believed by some to be Margaret Greenleaf of Yarmouth, daughter of Thomas and Elizabeth Leeds Greenlefe, which leaves us to wonder how the two would have met.  An argument has been made that she was Margaret Greenfield, sister of Samuel Greenfield, but there seems to be no proof as to that marriage, either.  So the most that we can say with confidence is that he married Margaret and that the six or seven children they are credited with were all born in England.  Field Dalling, Norfolk, England is given as the birth place of some of the children, and Ipswich, Suffolk, England for others, but again, I don't find documentation. 

However, we know that John and Margaret were in New England by 1637, when he is said to be at Charlestown (a frequent first stop for those who moved on).  All of their children were born by then, and John would have been in his early 40s.  Their oldest son, would have been 20 and their youngest, Hannah, perhaps eight years old. 

John, a tailor, became a member of the church at Charlestown on March 10, 1639.  He was an original proprietor of the town of Woburn in December of 1640, and three years later was a freeman and sergeant of the training band (militia) in Woburn.  This wasn't just some show up one day a month and drill group.  These men were responsible for protecting the town from any incursions from the native Americans, and the Pequot War had just ended in 1637.  Training would have been serious business. 

John acquired eight pieces of land in Charlestown, as well as part of the cow commons.  When he moved to Woburn, he had minor town offices, most relating to taxes, besides the role of sergeant for the band.  He was a courageous man, for he was one of those who, in 1653, signed a petition to the General Court called the "Woburn Memorial for Christian Liberty", earning himself the permanent label of "One of the bold petitioners."  Apparently religious freedom was still frowned upon by the Court.

Margaret died about 1641.  We don't have a cause of death but there were many illnesses prevalengt that took both women and men.  John married Alice sometime after Margaret's death, but they had no children together.  

John gave land to his son Samuel and possibly to his other sons before he died, which would explain why they are not mentioned in his will.  He died April 24, 1656, leaving an estate of 163 pounds.  One unusual feature of his will was that he left the house and orchards to his wife Alice, for as long as she lived or until six years after her re=marriage.  Usually men left the use of the home, or part of it, until the widow remarried, so the six years grace period is a bit different. 

John was another of our ancestors who had the courage to come to the New World under difficult conditions, and who apparently "made good".  He coped with the new environment, with supporting and raising his family, and with the demands that the military placed on him.  He and Margaret are good role models. 

John Tidd gives us another ancestor in common with the two Presidents Bush, with Barbara Bush, and with Buckminster Fuller, among others. 

The line of descent is:

John Tidd-Margaret possibly Greanleaf
John Tidd-Rebecca Wood
John Tidd-Elizabeth Fifield
Elizabeth Tidd-Joseph Stevens
Elizabeth Stevens-William Snow
Lucy Snow-Josiah Whittemore
Josiah Whittemore-Betsy Foster
Mary Elizabeth Whittemore-Joseph Holbrook
Fremont Holbrook-Phoebe Brown
Loren Holbrook-Etta Stanard
Gladys Holbrook-Richard Allen
Their descendants