Welcome! I really enjoy exchanging information with people and hope this blog will help with that. 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.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Jonathan Bangs, ca 1640 – 1728 and Mary Mayo 1642-1711 of Eastham and Harwich/Brewster, MA

Jonathan Bangs was born in Eastham ca 1640, the eldest son of Edward and Rebecca (possibly Hobart) Bangs. His last name is sometimes spelled Banges. Jonathan grew up in Eastham, one of nine children. His father was an important member of the community—he was an Inn Keeper, served the community in many ways and was a large landholder. Jonathan was named executor of his father’s estate and received multiple parcels of land in his father’s 19 October 1677 will.

I wrote about Edward and Rebecca Bangs here.

Jonathan married, first, on 16 July 1664 in Eastham, Mary Mayo, the daughter of Samuel and Tamsin (Lumpkin) Mayo and granddaughter of Rev. John Mayo. Jonathan and Mary raised their large family in Eastham.

Jonathan and Mary had 12 children born Eastham:
Edward born 30 September 1665, married Ruth Allen
Rebecca born 1 February 1666/67
Jonathan born 30 April 1670, died 11 May 1670
Mary born 14 April 1671, married Thomas Nickerson
Jonathan born 4 May 1673, married Elizabeth _____
Hannah born 14 March 1675/76, who married John Crosby
Tamsin born 5 May 1678, married Joseph Burgess
Samuel born 12 July 1680, married Mary Hinckley
Mercy born 7 January 1681/82, married Thomas Hinckley, second Joseph Cole
Elizabeth born 16 May 1685
Sarah born August 1687, married Benjamin Collins
Lydia b. 2 October 1689, married Shubael Hinckley

I descend from their daughter Tamsin.

Jonathan served in the Eastham Militia, where he was an Ensign and later a Captain. He served in King Philip’s War.

He served his community in a variety of ways. He was a Selectman for three years, Deputy to the Old Colony Court, Representative to the General Court at Boston, and Town Treasurer of Eastham. 

Jonathan served on the Jury that sentenced three Indians to death for the murder of John Sassamon, a Christianized Native who was a liaison between the English and the Indians. It is believed the trial and executions were the tipping point for Metacom to start the war against the colonists, known as King Philip's War. 

After 1694, Jonathan and Mary removed to Harwich, in an area that is now Brewster.

Mary died in her 69th year on 26 January 1710/11 and is buried at the Old Burial Ground in Brewster, also know as the First Parish Cemetery which is on Rt. 6A behind the Unitarian Church.
Mary Mayo Bangs' stone at Brewster
HERE LYES Ye BODY OF
MARY BANGES WIFE
TO JONATHAN BANGES
DEC'D JANU'ARY Ye 26th 1711
IN THE 66 YEAR
OF HER AGE

Jonathan married, second, a woman named Sarah whose last name is unknown. Sarah died June 1719, aged 77, and is also buried in Brewster.

On 23 July 1720 Jonathan married third Mrs. Ruth Young, daughter of Daniel Cole. He would have been about 80 years old, so apparently he was both an optimist and loved being married!

On 18 April 1721 Jonathan, as Administrator, swore to the accuracy of the inventory of the estate of his son Samuel of Harwich

Jonathan died at age 88 on 9 November 1728 and is buried at the Old Burial Ground in Brewster.

HERE LYES BURIED
ye BODY OF CAP't
JONATHAN BANGS
AGED 88 YEARS
DEC'D NOVEMBER ye
19th 1728

The original gravestone is set in a large granite monument along with similar gravestones for Jonathan's two wives Mary Banges and Sarah Banges (1719). The 'e' was dropped from Banges for Capt. Bangs.
Jonathan's gravestone at Old Burial Ground in Brewster

Sources Not Listed Above:

Andrew P. Langlois, Descendants of John Young of Plymouth and Eastham, Mayflower Descendant, Vol 54, no. 2, Summer 2005

Glade Ian Nelson, Identifying Mercy, wife of Thomas 4 Hinckley of Harwich, MA, as Mercy (Bangs) (Hinckley) Cole, NEHGR, Volume 162, July 2008

Deyo, Simeon L., editor, History of Barnstable County, Massachusetts, 1890

Rev. Enoch Pratt, A Comprehensive History, Ecclesiastical and Civil, of Eastham, Wellfleet and Orleans, County of Barnstable, Mass. from 1644 to 1844, 1844

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Ancestors Who Served in King Philip’s War

In honor of Veterans’ Day, I’m writing about my ancestors who served in King Philip’s War. I have such mixed emotions about their service, as I empathize with the Native Americans. I believe both sides included many brave men who were fighting for what they believed in and required the support and sacrifice of many women as well. But both sides also commited unthinkable atrocities during the war, particulary killing innocent women and children and selling people into slavery. I’m by no means an expert on the war but do enjoy learning about it. I believe I also have Native American ancestry from the 17th century but cannot prove that.  
Depiction of King Philip/Metacom

King Philip was the name given to Metacom (or Metacomet), son of Chief Massasoit of the Wampanoags. Massasoit had lived peacefully with the Plymouth settlers, although tensions existed. After his death, his son Wamsutta was chief/sachem and after his death Metacom ascended to power. 
Massasoit Statue, Plymouth


As more settlers arrived in New England, they continually encroached on the land occupied by the Native Americans, the very people who had helped the Pilgrims learn to survive in their new land. One major issue was cattle trampling Native’s corn fields.

The colonists also brought with them many diseases that decimated some Native American tribes. Metacom felt his brother’s death was suspicious—in an attempt to gain control the Plymouth court summosed Wamsutta by gunpoint. He was released, but he sickened and died soon after.

 Metacom also grew increasingly angry at the Colonists’ refusal to stop buying land from the Natives. It was common for white settlers to ply Native Americans with alcohol to get them to sign (using a symbol) land deeds or to give them items of comparatively low value in exchange for land. Many Native Americans sold land to fund their increasing dependency on English goods.

The tipping point for Metacom was the execution of three Native Americans for the 1674 murder of Harvard-educated Indian John Sassamon who was a liaison between the two groups. His body was found in a pond near Middleborough. Many Native Americans did not want their own people tried in English courts. My ancestors Robert Wixon and Jonathan Bangs were members of the jury, which also included Natives.

King Philip’s War lasted from 1675-76. It started in Swansea and spread from there to include much of New England.  It effectively ended with the death at Mount Hope of Metacom/Philip in August 1676 at the hands of a Wampanoag soldier. Mount Hope is in present day Bristol, RI. Not all Native Americans sided with Metacom—some fought with the Colonists and others remained neutral. Many of the neutral Natives were interned in inhumane conditions. Many other Natives were sold abroad as slaves (including Philip’s wife and children) or forced to become servants.

Stone marking the spot where King Philip fell at Mt. Hope
File:King Philip's Seat.jpg
King Philip's Seat, where King Philip held meetings, Mt. Hope


It was one of the bloodiest wars to occur on what is now U.S. soil. Nearly half of New England’s 90 towns were assaulted by native warriors; twelve towns were completely destroyed and one in eleven families were left homeless. Large numbers of people on both sides were killed, including 600-800 of the colony’s military (one in eleven men) and many women and children. For each colonist killed, three or more Indians died—in battles but also from starvation, exposure and disease.

When comparing total populations, the death rate was nearly twice that of the Civil War and more than seven times that of World War II. The colony’s economy lay in ruins as it was a very expensive war to fund—it exceeded the value of all the personal property in New England. Some 1,200 homes were burned, 8,000 head of cattle lost and stores of food destroy. Many white settlers were captured and taken to Canada where they were sold or ransomed.
[Illustration]
Depiction of the attack on Sudbury

Some of the ancestors in my direct line who served in King Philip’s War:

·         William 2 Nickerson b. 1646, born Yarmouth, of Chatham, son of William and Anne (Busby). He served on the fourth expedition with Capt. Pierce and also under the command of Capt. Henry Gold.
·         John Chase, b. 1649, Yarmouth, son of William 2 and husband of Elizabeth Baker who was a Quaker. Served on the first expedition in 1675.
·         Despite their pacificistic Quaker religion, it seems that at least some of Elizabeth Baker Chases’s brothers (Daniel, William, Thomas and Samuel Baker and possibly others) all served in the war. They were the sons of Francis 1 and Isabel (Twining) Baker of Yarmouth. I descend from Daniel andWilliam. It seems that Quakers during this time had to reconcile their religious beliefs with the need to defend their towns and families.
·         Isaac Pierce, born abt 1641, probably in Duxbury, of Middleborough, son of Abraham 1 and Alice (___) Pierce/Peirce,
·         Luke Perkins, son Abraham, b. about 1640, in Hampton (now New Hampshire), son of Abraham 1 and Mary (____) Perkins. He served in Capt. Thomas Prentice's Company, listed on a treasurer's report dated 24 April 1676, under the command of Lt. Edward Oakes. Luke was of Charlestown.
·         Jonathan Bangs b. 1640, probably in Eastham, son of Edward 1 and Rebecca (___) Bangs. He was a Captain.
·         Thomas Howes b. abt. 1634, of Yarmouth, son of Thomas 1 and Mary (?Burr) Howes. In 1675 Captain Thomas Howes led nine men from Yarmouth on the third expedition; he led 21 men in fifth expedition. On third expedition Captain Thomas Howes took the place of their fallen leader Capt. Gorham* for which he was paid 6 pounds.
·         Samuel Howes, son Joseph 2 Howes, b. ca 1653, Yarmouth, served as Corporal in 1675 and in Capt. Nathaniel Davenport’s company in 1676. He was later called a Captain.
·         Daniel Cole b. abt 1615 in England, of Eastham. Bodge wrote that Daniel Cole's heir (son-in-law Jonathan Grew -- maybe a mistake for Jonathan Bangs), claimed land in 1733 at Gorham Maine, that was given to Daniel for his service in King Philip's War. This is the only source I’ve seen giving Daniel as serving in the war and I wonder if he was confused with his son.
·         Daniel’s son, Timothy Cole, b. 1646, Eastham, did serve.  In 1675 he served under Capt. John Gorham and fought in the Narragansett Expedition.  After the war he was granted land at Narragansett Township (Gorham, Maine).  Timothy, or his descendants, was granted lot 41, about 30 acres.
·         John 2 Davis b. 1623, of Haverhill and later of Oyster River (now Durham, NH), son of James and Cicely (?Thayer). Was an Ensign and later a Captain. Served in later Indian/Colonial wars as well. He built a garrison house in Oyster River. His wife, Jane (Peasley), and other members of his family were killed by Indians during King William’s War.
·         John Freeman, b. ca 1627, Eastham, son of Edmund 1 and Bennet (Hodsoll). Was a Major and granted land at Gorham, Maine.
·         Benjamin 1 Nye, b. 1620, England, of Sandwich. Benjamin was in Capt. Michael Peirse's Company. On 25 Feb 1676, Indians attacked Weymouth. On 12 March 1676, they attacked Plymouth and destroyed Clark's garrison house and plundered the area. Plymouth Colony ordered a company of men to be impressed on 8 Feb 1675/76, under Peirse's command. On 25 March, there was a skirmish with Indians at Seekonk. Despite warnings from Indian allies, Peirse continued on and the company was ambushed. All were killed, including Benjamin Nye of Sandwich.
·         Jonathan Sparrow, Capt, b. abt 1629, Eastham, son of Richard 1 and Pandora (____) Sparrow. He served as an Ensign in the war and later was a Captain in the French Indian War.
·         Paul Sears, b. about 1637 in Marblehead, son of Richard 1 and Dorothy (Jones) Sears. Captain in the Yarmouth militia; made claim for horse lost in the Narragansett War (i.e. King Philip’s War), although there are no records of his service.

*John Gorham is my 10th great granduncle.

I would imagine there is even more as men were required to be members of the local Militia and it is sometimes difficult to know with more common names whether the person who served is my ancestor.

An example of what one of the soldiers, Luke Perkins, may have experienced:

The Middlesex Troop was commanded by Capt. Thomas Prentice, who was born in England about 1620 and lived at Cambridge. He was appointed captain 24 June 1675 of a special Troop and went out with Capt. Henchman. They arrived at Swansey, at Miles' garrison, and were fired upon by Indians. Mr. Church was also with them.** Several were wounded, so they withdrew. Next day they were fortified by Capt. Mosely's volunteers, and they charged across a bridge and drove the Indians from the "Neck." On June 30 they rode to Rehoboth. The next day the troop was divided, with one division serving under Lt Edward Oakes. It seems both troops rode back by the same route. Prentice's men came upon Indians burning a house, but could not get at them, because of a delay caused by having to tear down fences that were in the way, giving the Indians time to retreat to a swamp. Lt Oakes' forces discovered them and chased them over a plain, killing two of Philip's top men and losing one of their own men. Capt Prentice's men spent the next few days searching the swamps, but then went with the army to Narraganset. After they returned to Swansey and learned that Philip was hiding in Pocasset Swamp, the main body of Massachusetts troops was sent to Boston. Capt. Prentice and his troop were ordered to scout towards Mendon, where the Indians had lately made an assault upon the people, killing several. The troops met Capt. Johnson's company at Mendon. On 3 Dec 1675, Capt. Prentice was appointed to command a troop of horse in the Narraganset campaign, seeing much action, including battle at Bull's garrison and scouting raids.

** Captain Benjamin Church, who was a prominent figure in the war, was my first cousin 10 x removed. He was friendly with many Indians, so he understood them well and recruited some to fight with him. They helped the English learn to fight the way the Indians did, a form of guerilla warfare. He was injured in the Great Swamp Fight and it was one of his Indian allies that killed Philip.
Benjamin Church

Thomas Howes’ will that he prepared before going to war shows how the soldiers knew dying was a distinct possibility:
"To all Christian people to whom these presents shall come Thomas Howes of the Towne of Yarmouth in the Collony of Plymouth in New England sendeth Greeting and further know yee that I the said Thomas Howes being called and desired to Goe forth to warr in the present expedition: against the Indians Called Narragansetts; and forasmuch as such servis exposeth a person to Danger of line I doe therfore make and Declare my last will as followeth..." He then lists his wishes, that his land be divided between his two sons Thomas and Jonathan 'but in case the Child which my wife is bigg withall be a sonne, then my will is that the whole of my land and housing to be equally divided betwixt the three brothers..." To each of his children, including Thomas, Jonathan, Rebekah, and Sarah, as well as the unborn chid, he leaves 20 pounds. To his motherless niece who lives in their household, Elizabeth Sparrow, whose father will accompany him on this dangerous expedition, he leaves 15 pounds.*** He mentions his mother Prence (widow Mary Howes) who had been married for a second time to Thomas Prence. He forgives her for a small debt to him and asks that she "Injoy without molestation during her Naturall life the house shee Now lives in with the orchyard belonging thereunto...:”

Thomas went to Wickford (Rhode Island) with six other Yarmouth men where others were stationed. They left there and searched but did not find Indians, suffering from cold and wet conditions. Supplies were inadequate and several of the horses were eaten to prevent starvation. They were led by General Winslow and ended at Boston on February 5th, known as the "Hungry March." All the men returned alive although somewhat weakened in health. Thomas Howes died of an unnamed epidemic which cut down many of the town's young citizens, perhaps something brought home from the pursuit of the Indians. He was buried on the 20th of November 1676, per Yarmouth records, identified as Captain Howes.

***Elizabeth was the daughter of Jonathan Sparrow

Sources Not Listed Above:
George Madison Bodge, Soldiers in King Philip's War, A Critical Accounting of That War with a Concise History of the Indian Wars of New England from 1620-1677, 1896

James W. Hawes, Thomas 1 Howes of Yarmouth, Mass., and Some of His Descendants, Together with the Rev. John Mayo, Allied to Him by Marriage, Library of Cape Cod History and Genealogy, No. 31, 1917

Various town histories, including Swift’s History of Old Yarmouth, Nancy Thacher Reid’s history of Dennis, Deyo’s history of Barnstable County.

Eric Schultz and Michael Tougias, King Philip’s War: The History and Legacy of America’s Forgotten Conflict, 2000


Sunday, November 4, 2012

John Ryder/Rider (ca 1663-1719) and Esther Hall (1672-before 1719) of Yarmouth, Mass.

John Ryder (also spelled Rider) was born in Yarmouth, Mass. about 1663 (based on age given in a court deposition), the son of John Ryder whose wife’s name is not known (Fremont Ryder has her as Ann ____ with no source). 

Note that CW Swift has John as the son of Zachary Ryder and married to Patience Eldredge, but I believe this is an error. There is a lot of confusion between the two John Ryder's, but descendant Richard Eldridge helped me sort it out a few years back. If anyone has further information or newer references, I’d love to hear from you.

John married Esther (or Hester) Hall about 1691, probably in Yarmouth. She was born 12 April 1672 in Yarmouth, the daughter of John Hall and Priscilla Bearse.

The births of John and Esther’s children are recorded in Yarmouth Vital Records:

yarmouth A regester of the names and Beirths of [worn] John and Heester Rider as ffolloweth
John Rider the son of John and Heester Rider was Boorn upon the : 28th : day of may : 1692 :
Samuell Rider the son of the above said John and Heester Rider was Boorn in feburary 169[worn]
Beathiah Rider the daughtur of said John and Heester Rider was boorn in may: 1697
Hester Rider was borne in aprell 1699:
Marcy Rider was borne in Jun 1701
Zurviah Rider was borne in aprell 1703:
Nathanall Rider was borne in Jun 1705
thankfull Rider : the daughter of the abovesaid John and Ester Rider she was borne the first day of aprill in the yeare : 1709 :
John: & Hester Rider had a daughtur bourn in Aprell : 1694 : Bo[worn] and the said child did dey sudingly after it was borne recorded by me John miller Clarke

I descend through Nathaniel and his wife Desire Godfrey who lived in Chatham.

John was named in Plymouth Court records, which gives his age:
The testemony of James Clarke aged 51 or there abouts testefieth and saith that when the Cunstabel Came to attach the whalle I was att my son thomas Clarks when he Came in & he warned me to goe with him to the bluber & we found two pec: a lettle distanc one from another and then we followed the Rutt of the wheles northre quarte of a mil where we found a other percell then said was two load and Robert bartlet Carried a load to his fathers house
"James Clarke made oath i Court to what is above written March 20th 1689/90: Attest Saml Sprague Clerk"

"The Testemony of John Rider aged 26 yeares or there abouts Testefieth and saith that ye Whale in Contreversy Came on shoare agains a pastur fence belonging to James and Tho: Clarke and farther saith not
"John rider abovesd made Oath in Court march 20th 1689/90 to what is above written Attest Saml Sprague Clerk"

John was named in his father’s 6 March 1702/03 will, with a bequest of 10 shillings. His older brother Ebenezer was to receive his father’s land, but the land is mentioned as abutting John Jr.’s land, so perhaps his father had deeded him land earlier.

John died intestate in Yarmouth but Barnstable County Probate has information on the administration of his estate, dated 11 February 1718/19, naming Samuel Rider (his son) and Ebenezer Rider (his brother) as administrators.

The division of John’s estate was made 7 July 1721, estimated at a value of over 416 pounds. It names his second eldest son, Samuel Ryder, as the administrator. Eldest son John Ryder was to get a double share, believed to be given to him in land during his father's lifetime.  Son Samuel was to receive land named in his inventory (dwelling house, barn, swamp and meadow land), except for the quarter part of the windmill. Remaining personal estate and the share of the windmill were divided between children: Bethyah Eldredge, Esther Smith, Mercy Ryder, Zerviah Ryder, Nathanll Ryder, Hannah Ryder, Thankfull Ryder and Martha Ryder. Each was also to receive 39 Pounds 3 shillings 4 pence.
File:Judah-Baker-windmill back South-Yarmouth-MA-US.JPG
Example of a Cape Cod Windmill: the Judah Baker mill in South Yarmouth

I have not found Esther’s death date, but she died before John as she is not mentioned in the settling of his estate but after the birth of her youngest child in 1709.


Sources Not Listed Above:

CW Swift, Library of Cape Cod History and Genealogy, No. 66 "The Rider Family of Yarmouth," 1913

James W. Hawes, Library of Cape Cod History and Genealogy, No. 98, "Ryder Genealogy" 1912

Fremont Rider, Genealogy of Rider (Ryder) Families, 1959