Welcome! I really enjoy exchanging information with people and hope this blog will help with that. I am not an expert and I consider most of my research as a work in progress. Some of the surnames I'm researching:

Many old Cape families including Kelley, Eldredge/idge, Howes, Baker, Mayo, Bangs, Snow, Chase, Ryder/Rider, Freeman, Cole, Sears, Wixon, Nickerson.
Many old Plymouth County families including Washburn, Bumpus, Lucas, Cobb, Benson.
Johnson (England to MA)
Corey (Correia?) (Azores to MA)
Booth, Jones, Taylor, Heatherington (N. Ireland to Quebec)
O'Connor (Ireland to MA)
My Mayflower Ancestors (only first two have been submitted/approved by the Mayflower Society):
Francis Cooke, William Brewster, George Soule, Isaac Allerton, John Billington, Richard Warren, Peter Browne, Francis Eaton, Samuel Fuller, James Chilton, John Tilley, Stephen Hopkins, John Howland.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Richard Sears (1681-1718) and Hope Howes of Yarmouth and Chatham, Mass.

My seventh great-grandfather Richard Sears was born 1681 in Yarmouth, in the area of town that became Dennis, Mass. He was one of the 10 children of Paul and Deborah (Willard) Sears and the grandson of Richard and Dorothy (Jones) Sears.

Richard married Hope Howes on 15 May 1706 in Yarmouth (now Dennis), Mass. She was born ca 1682, the daughter of Samuel and Rebecca (Howes) Howes. They had four children:

1.      Thankful born 18 March 1706/07, married John Rich, died 17 Oct 1782 at Truro
2.      Paul born about 1710, married Anna Atkins and died after 1752
3.      Samuel born about 1712, died 21 December 1738 at age 26
4.      Hannah born about 1717, m. Zoheth Smith, died 15 May 1746 at Eastham

I descend through their son Paul who married Anna Atkins. I wrote about this couple here.

Richard purchased land at Monomoit (now Chatham) from Samuel Sprague of Marshfield on 3 March 1707/8, the first of his family to settle there. He conveyed part of his interest to his brother Daniel. In 1711, 13 families emigrated from Chatham, mostly to Duck Creek, Delaware, leaving just 33 families in the village.

In 1712 Richard Sears was 4/30th owner of common lands. He was town treasurer in 1713. In 1715 he signed a letter supporting Ebenezer Hawes in a lawsuit against Rev. Adams. His biographer wrote that Adams was an able minister, but so eccentric and opinionated that he made enemies wherever he went. Very few Chatham residents stayed loyal to him and he eventually left.
Richard Sears's signature from Smith's History of Chatham

Richard died in Chatham, Mass. on 24 May 1718 in his 38th year. He is buried at Chatham’s Oldest Burial Ground and his gravestone, which has an engraved winged skull, is the oldest in the cemetery.

THE 24 1718
Richard Sears's gravestone at Chatham source: findagrave.com

Hope married second Deacon John Rich of Eastham and his children were brought up there, although his son Paul returned to Chatham to live on his father's land. I have not found Hope's death or burial information.

Sources Not Listed Above:
William C. Smith, Early Chatham Settlers, Library of Cape Cod History & Genealogy, No. 36, CW Swift Publishers, Yarmouthport, Mass., 1915

William C. Smith, A History of Chatham, Massachusetts: formerly the Constablewick or Village of Monomoit ; with maps and illustrations and numerous genealogical notes, 1909


  1. Thanks Chris, very nice. I emailed you at your comcast addy from 2009, is it still active? Regards, Ray Sears LRSears@gmail.com

  2. i recently purchased a genealogy of Richard Sears Chatham Massachusetts Hand Painted piece and was wondering if you could tell me about it
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