There is a lack of vital records concerning Adam Wright and his family, but fortunately George Bowman did a thorough job of researching the family, sorting out which children were born to each wife, which was published in the Mayflower Descendant. Adam Wright was born, probably in Plymouth, Mass., about 1645, the son of Richard and Hester (Cooke) Wright. Hester was the daughter of Mayflower passengers Francis and Hester (Mahieu) Cooke.
Adam was called a blacksmith in 1699 and 1701 court documents.
|Adam Wright's Plympton Homesite (source: Eugene Wright's History of Plympton)|
Adam married 1st Sarah Soule in Duxbury or Plymouth around the year 1678. She was born ca 1660, likely in Duxbury, the daughter of John and Rebecca (Simmons) Soule, granddaughter of Mayflower passenger George Soule.
Adam and Sarah had six children:
1. Esther b. about 1679, married Daniel Pratt
2. John b. 1680-81, married Mary Lucas
3. Mary b. about 1683, married Jeremiah Gifford
4. Isaac b. Plymouth 19 January 1685/86, married Mary Cole
5. Rachel b. 1688-89, married Ebenezer Barlow
6. Sarah b. about 1692, married Seth Fuller
I descend through Adam and Sarah’s son Isaac.
Sarah (Soule) Wright died between between 1691 (when she signed a deed) and 1699 (when Adam’s son Samuel was likely born by his second wife).
Adam married 2nd, after March 1690/91, Mehitable Barrow, daughter of Robert and Ruth (Bonham) Barrow. They had four children together, and Adam would have been about 66 years old when his youngest was born.
1. Samuel, b. about 1699, married Anna Tilson
2. Moses, b. about 1703, married Thankful Boles
3. James, b. about 1707, married Elizabeth Waterman
4. Nathan, born Plympton 12 May 1711, married Hannah Cooke
|Map showing Plympton early settlers Adam is no. 1 which is hard to read, under no. 21 (source: Eugene Wright)|
Adam Wright died at Plympton 20 September 1724, in his 79th or 80th year. He is buried at the Old Burial ground there (aka Hillcrest Cemetery) on Main Street with other family members. Adam’s stone is a replacement stone; I assume his original stone was a slate one that has not survived or is not readable. Many of the old stones in this cemetery are in poor, even crumbling, condition.
|Adam Wright's replacement stone|
Adam’s will and inventory are recorded in the Plymouth County Probate Records, Volume V, pages 26 – 29, transcribed by George E. Bowman for the Mayflower Descendant. His will was written 9 April 1723 at Plympton, stating that he was old in age but in perfect health and sound in mind and memory. It mentions his already having deeded land to sons John, Isaac, Samuel, and Moses (John was bequeathed five shillings and any land not otherwise disposed of); grandchildren Joshua Pratt and his sister Sarah, children of his deceased daughter Esther Pratt, to receive 5 shillings; daughter Sarah Fuller the wife of Seth Fuller to receive land and part of moveable estate she already had; sons James and Nathan were to receive 100 pounds each on their 21st birthdays; daughter Mary Gifferd wife of Jeremiah Gifferd to receive 20 pounds; daughter Rachel Barlow wife of Ebenezer Barlow to receive 20 pounds; wife Mehitable Wright, whom he named executrix, was to have the remainder of the estate as long as she remained his widow. If she remarried, she would receive 20 pounds.
The will was witnessed by Joseph Thomas, Nathaniel Fuller and Isaac Cushman Junr. It was probated on 2 November 1724.
An inventory was taken 10 October 1724 by Isaac Cushman Junr, Joseph Thomas and James Soul. It included swine, cattle, sheeps wool, wheels and cards, grindstone, iron, brass, pewter and earthenware, books, apparel, bedsteads.
There are small things in the documents related to Adam that make me quite fond of him. He seemed like a loving, kind family man. He fathered children well into his 60s. That he was still healthy when he was in his late 70s was certainly admirable. He bequested 20 pounds to his wife if she remarried—it seems more common for a woman to lose any claim to her late husband’s estate if she married again—which indicates to me that he wanted her to be happy and comfortable. In a deed of land to his daughter Sarah Fuller he wrote that it was in consideration of the love he held for her.
Note: The Plympton Historical Society has Eugene Wright's, History of Plympton, available on its website. It is a collection of his research from a loose-leaf binder and includes the photo of Adam Wright's homesite and the map showing the location. The website address is http://town.plympton.ma.us/cultural/hc_wright.html.
Sources Not Listed Above:
Robert Wakefield, “Richard Wright of Plymouth, Mass,” The American Genealogist, July 1983
George Ernest Bowman, “Adam Wright’s Wives and Their Children,” Mayflower Descendant, Volume 11 (1909)