Welcome! I really enjoy exchanging information with people and love that this blog helps with that. I consider much of my research as a work in progress, so please let me know if you have conflicting information. 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 male 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, and John Howland.
Female Mayflower ancestors: Mary Norris Allerton, Eleanor Billington, Mary Brewster, Mrs. James Chilton, Sarah Eaton, and Joan Hurst Tilley.
Child Mayflower ancestors: Giles Hopkins, (possibly) Constance Hopkins, Mary Allerton, Francis Billington, Love Brewster, Mary Chilton, Samuel Eaton, and Elizabeth Tilley.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Elizabeth Tilley Howland 1607-1687 Mayflower Passenger

Mayflower Passenger Elizabeth Tilley was baptized 30 August 1607, Henlow, Bedfordshire, England, the daughter of John Tilley and Joan Hurst (Rogers). I wrote about them here. She was the fifth and youngest child. Elizabeth is my 11th great-grandmother on my grandfather Arthur Washburn Davis’ side of the family. 

St. Mary's Henlow where Elizabeth Tilley was baptized
At age 13 Elizabeth went with her family to Leiden, Holland, where they were part of the Separatist group. Elizabeth was a Mayflower passenger with her parents who both died in the first difficult Plymouth winter, leaving her as the only family member to survive. The rest of Elizabeth’s siblings must have died young or stayed behind in Leiden. It is presumed that on the voyage the girls had chores to do but also played with the younger children. 17th century games included naughts and crosses (tic tac toe), draughts (checkers), knickers (marbles), hopfrog (leapfrog), lummelen (keep away), skipped rope (jump rope), and stickball. Elizabeth's future husband, John Howland, was also on board, as a manservant to John Carver. Historians believe Elizabeth went to live with the Carvers when she was orphaned. John Carver died the first spring, his wife the first summer and their children had already died when they were in Leiden. It is possible John Howland inherited part of Carver’s estate. What a tremendous amount of loss Elizabeth witnessed in her young life.  

Most of the Pilgrims felt girls were not strong enough to make the voyage or to survive hardships afterward, so many left their daughters in England or Holland and send for them later. Despite this belief, 11 girls did make the voyage. They proved to have the strongest bodies of all. That first winter 75 percent of the women died, 50 percent of the men, 36 percent of the boys and only 18 percent (2) girls died.

In March 1623 Elizabeth married John Howland when she was not quite 16 years of age and he was about 15 years her senior. They had 10 children together. 

Elizabeth survived her husband and is mentioned in his will. She never remarried and lived at times with two children, including her son Jabez in Plymouth 1674 until he sold his house (which is still standing and open to public) in 1680. Prior to that it is believed Elizabeth and John spent winters with Jabez. She then lived with her daughter Lydia Brown in Swansea. The Howland's Rocky Nook farm in what is now Kingston burned in 1675 during King Philip's War.

In her will dated 17 Dec 1686, signed by her mark, Elizabeth named her sons John, Jabez, Joseph and Isaac, her son-in-law James Browne, her surviving daughters Lydia Browne, Elizabeth Dickason, and Hannah Bosworth, her granddaughters Elizabeth Bursley, Dorothy Browne and Desire Cushman, and her grandsons Nathaniel Howland and James and Jabez Browne. She charged her children to "walke in ye Fear of ye Lord, and in love and peace toward each other." So many women of Elizabeth’s era are invisible to us today, but this sentence in her will tells me so much about her.

In ye Name of God Amen I Elizabeth Howland of Swanzey in ye County of Bristoll in ye Collony of Plymouth in New Engld being Seventy nine yeares of Age but of good & perfect memory thanks be to Allmighty God & calling to Remembrance ye uncertain Estate of this transitory Life & that all flesh must Yeild unto Death when it shall please God to call Doe make constitute & ordaine & Declare This my last Will & Testament, in manner & forme following Revoking and Anulling by these prsents all & every Testamt & Testamts Will & Wills heretofore by me made & declared either by Word or Writing And this to be taken only for my last Will & Testament & none other. "And first being penitent & sorry from ye bottom of my heart for all my sinns past most humbly desiring forgivenesse for ye same I give & Comitt my soule unto Allmighty God my Saviour & Redeemer in whome & by ye meritts of Jesus Christ I trust & believe assuredly to be saved & to have full remission & forgivenesse of all my sins & that my Soule wt my Body at the generall Day of Resurrection shall rise againe wt Joy & through ye meritts of Christs Death & passion possesse & inheritt ye Kingdome of heaven prepared for his Elect & Chosen & my Body to be buryed in such place where it shall please my Executrs hereafter named to appoint And now for ye settling my temporall Estate & such goodes Chattells & Debts as it hath pleased God far above my Deserts to bestow upon me I Do Dispose order & give ye same in manner & forme following (That is to say) First that after my funerall Expences & Debts paid wc I owe either of right or in Conscience to any manner of person or persons whatsoever in Convenient tyme after my Decease by my Execrs hereafter named I Give & bequeath unto my Eldest Son John Howland ye sum of five pounds to be paid out of my Estate & my booke called Mr Tindale's Workes & also one pair of sheetes & one prof pillowbeeres & one pr of Bedblanketts, Item I give unto my son Joseph Howland my Stillyards & also one pr of sheetes & one pt of pillobeeres Item I give unto my son Jabez Howland my ffetherbed & boulster yt is in his Custody & also one Rugg & two Blanketts yt belongeth to ye said Bed & also my great Iron pott & potthookes Item I give unto my son Isaack Howland my Booke called Willson on ye Romanes & one pr of sheetes & one paire of pillowbeeres & also my great Brasse Kettle already in his possession Item I give unto my Son in Law Mr James Browne my great Bible Item I give & bequeath unto my Daughter Lidia Browne my best ffeatherbed & Boulster two pillowes & three Blanketts & a green Rugg & my small Cupboard one pr of AndyIrons & my lesser brasse Kettle & my small Bible & my booke of mr Robbinsons Workes called Observations Divine & Morrall & allso my finest pr of Sheetes & my holland pillowbeeres, Item I give unto my Daughter Elisabeth Dickenson one pr of Sheetes & one pr of pillowbeeres & one Chest Item  give unto my Daughter Hannah Bosworth one pr of sheets & one pr of pillowbeeres, Item I give unto my Grand Daughter Elizabeth Bursley one paire of sheets and one paire of Pillowbeeres Item I give & bequeath unto my Grandson Nathanael Howland (the son of Joseph Howland) and to the heires of his owne Body lawfully begotten for ever all that my Lott of Land with ye Meadow thereunto adjoyning & belonging lying in the Township of Duxbury neare Jones River bridge, Item I give unto my Grandson James Browne One Iron barr and on Iron Trammell now in his possession, Item I give unto my Grandson Jabez Browne one Chest Item I give unto my Grand Daughter Dorothy Browne My best Chest & my Warming pan Item I give unto my Grand Daughter Desire Cushman four Sheep, Item I give & bequeath my wearing clothes linnen and Woollen and all the rest of my Estate in mony Debts linnen or of what kind or nature or sort soever it may be unto my three Daughters Elisabeth Dickenson, Lidia Browne and Hannah Bosworth to be equally Devided amongst them, Item I make constitute and ordaine my loving Son in Law James Browne and my loving son Jabez Howland [p. 14] Executors of this my last Will and Testament, Item it is my Will & Charge to all my Children that they walke in ye Feare of ye Lord, and in Love and peace towards each other and endeavour the true performance of this my last Will & Testament In Witnesse whereof I the said Elisabeth Howland have hereunto sett my hand & seale this seventeenth Day of December Anno Dm one thousand six hundred Eighty & six.
The mark of Elisabeth E H Howland (sigittu)
Signed Sealed & Delivd
in ye prsence of Us Wittnesses
Hugh Cole
Samuel Vyall
John Browne
Know all men that on ye tenth Day of Janry Anno Dm 1687/8 Before me Nathanl Byfield Esqr Judge of his Majties Inferiour Court of Plea's for ye County of Bristoll, present Jno Walley Esqr one of ye Members of his Majties Councill in New England & Capt Benjam Church Justice of Peace The abovewritten Will of Elizabeth Howland was proved approved & allowed And ye Administracon of all & singuler ye goodes Rights and Creditts of ye said Deced was Committed unto
            James Browne & Jabez Howland Execrs in ye same Will named well & truly to Administer ye same according to the Will of ye Deced In Testimony whereof I have hereunto Sett ye Seale of ye Office for Probate of Wills & granting Lettrs of Admincon ye yeare & Day by me abovewritten
(Sigittu officij)            Nathanael Byfield
Thus Entred & ingrossed this 26: of Janry Anno Dm 1687/8 pr Steph Burton

It is interesting she owned books. I do wonder if they were her own or belonged to her husband. If it was the latter I think she would have already given them to her sons. It was rare for women of that era to read.

No inventory is on file.

Elizabeth died in Swansea 21 or 31 December 1687, at 80 years of age, in the home of her daughter Lydia Browne. Three of her daughters, Desire Gorham, Hope Chipman and Ruth Cushman had already died, leaving heirs. She is buried at Little Neck Cemetery, E. Providence, RI, her headstone erected by descendants in 1949.

Elizabeth Tilley Howland's gravestone source: findagrave.com

Friday, September 7, 2018

Samuel Berry, 1654-1704, and his wife Elizabeth Bell of Yarmouth, Mass.

Samuel Berry was born 11 July 1654 in Yarmouth, Barnstable Co., Mass., the son of Richard and Alice Berry. He is my 8th great-grandfather on my grandmother Milly (Booth) Rollins’ side of the family.

Samuel’s father Richard Berry was a man of questionable character, disenfranchised for being a “grossly scandalous and debauched” person. I wrote about Richard Berry here.   Swift wrote that Richard’s 11 children had exemplary character and that his sons John and Samuel were useful and esteemed citizens.

On 19 January 1660, when Samuel was just five years old, his father gave him to George Crispe and his wife of Eastham. It was fairly common for parents who couldn’t afford to care for all of their children to put them out to learn a trade, but the wording of the agreement sounds more like an adoption as it stated George and his wife were to raise Samuel as if he were their own. According to George Crispe’s 8 June 1682 will, Samuel became "stubborn and rebellious and went away against Mr. Crisp's protest before his lawful time [age 21].” In consequence Mr. Crispe ordered the executor to pay him the small sum of 12 pence and no more.

I’d love to know the details behind Samuel’s running off. Was he mistreated by the Crispe family or was he a willful person like his father who seemed to act without thinking of consquences? At any rate, it can’t have been easy being given away by his parents at such a young age.

Samuel grew up and married Elizabeth Bell, who Torrey gives as the daughter of John Bell, before the birth of their first child in 1682. Her identity is proven when John Bell of Yarmouth died in 1700 and his son-in-law Samuel Berry of Harwich was named executor. Samuel’s unnamed daughter was in possession of her grandfather’s yearling. Samuel charged the estate over 41 pounds for caring for his father-in-law John Bell for three years and his mother-in-law for five years, this included paying for both of their funerals. John’s daughter Elizabeth Berry is named in the estate settlement.

Elizabeth and John had six children, births recorded Yarmouth Vital Records:
An unnamed daughter, born 19 Jan 1682
Elizabeth, born 21 December 1684
Patience, born 22 Jan 1687
John, born 9 July 1689
Samuel, born Nov 1691
Desire, born 29 June 1694

I descend from son Samuel who married Rebecca Gray.

He came to Harwich from Yarmouth, living on the west side of Herring River. He was of Harwich when his father-in-law died in 1700 but was again of Yarmouth at the time of his death in 1704.

Samuel Berry died 21 February 1703/04 at Yarmouth, just 49 years of age. He did not leave a will but just three hours before his death in the presence of Benjamin Gage and Daniel Baker, he said he wanted his property to go to his wife to use to support “the little girl.”  Presumably this was his daughter Desire. Gage and Baker testified to this statement on 23 February 1703/4 to John Thacher, Justice of the Peace, and again on 29 February to Probate Judge Barnabas Lothrop. 

Gage and Baker took inventory of Samuel’s estate on 3 March 1704, and it include land, housing and meadows worth 25 pounds, 3 cows, 2 steers and other young cattle, horse, sheep, swine, a gun, farm implements and harvested crops, clothes, cloth and bedding. Debts of 11 pounds were due to the estate.

I have not found Elizabeth Bell Berry’s death date but she survived her husband Samuel.

Josiah Paine, History of Harwich, Barnstable Co, Mass. 1620-1800, 1937
Clarence Torrey, New England Marriages Prior to 1700
Amos Otis, Genealogical Notes of Barnstable Families , 1890
Simeon Deyo, editor, History of Barnstable County, Mass., 1890
William Davis, The Berry Family of Yarmouth, Library of Cape Cod History and Genealogy, Pamphlet No. 80, 1912
Susan E. Roser, Early Descendants of Daniel Cole of Eastham, Mass., 2010
Charles F. Swift, History of Old Yarmouth, 1884

Sunday, August 26, 2018

John Sutton 1621 to 1691/2 of Norfolk England and Scituate, Mass.

John Sutton was baptized 7 October 1621 at Great Snoring, Norfolk, England, the son of John Sutton and Julian Adcocke. Julian is called Juda in the record, but she is often called variations of Judith. He is my 10th great-grandfather on my Grandfather Arthur Washburn Davis’ side of the family. I wrote about John's parents here.

John was a teenager when he came to New England with his parents and sisters in 1638 on The Diligent.  They first settled at Hingham, Massachusetts, later moving to Scituate.

John Sutton appears on the list of those of Scituate who took the oath of fidelity in 1657.

He married in Scituate, on 1 January 1661/62, Elizabeth House (sometimes spelled Howes) who was baptized there 23 October 1636, the daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth (Hammond) House.  Since John was 40 when he married, I would think it was a second marriage but I have no proof of this.

John and Elizabeth had eight children:
Elizabeth b. 1662
Mary b. 1665
Sara b. 1667
Hannah b. 1669
Hester b. 1671
Benjamin b. 1674/5
Nathaniel b. 1676
Nathan b. 1679

I descend from Mary who married Benjamin Booth. I wrote about them here.

John Sutton was as an Ensign in the Scituate Militia from 1 March 1670 and he served during King Philip's War with Capt. Williams.

He is called a carpenter when he sold his Scituate house and four acre house lot on 2 December 1653. It mentions the four acre lot was given “by the Towne of Hingham to John Sutton my father.”

John purchased Conihassett lands, south of Booth hill and near Bound brook. His house was near the Brook, a half mile south of that hill. 

John Sutton of Scituate wrote his will on 12 November 1691, when he was 70 years old. He owned land at Scituate and Cohasset. His eldest son John received most of the land but younger sons Nathaniel and Nathan were also received land and were to pay their sister Hannah over 7 pounds.  His daughters Elizabeth, Mary, Sarah and Hester received 10 pounds each. Son Benjamin is not mentioned, so he must have predeceased his father.

John Sutton died Scituate, Massachusetts between 12 November 1691 (date of will) and 9 February 1691/92 (date of inventory).  Elizabeth died after her husband as she is named in his will.

Eugene Cole Zubrinsky, Julian Adcocke, Wife of John 1 Sutton of Hingham and Rehoboth, Mass., and Their Family, NEHGR, January 2013, vol 167:7-14

Eugene Cole Zubrinsky, The English Origin of John 1 Sutton of Hingham and Rehoboth, Mass., NEHG Register, Winter 2018

Howard Dakin French for William Arthur Whitcomb, Sutton Family, NEHGR, Vol 91, 1937

Samuel Deane, History of Scituate, Massachusetts, from Its First Settlement to 1831

Saturday, August 4, 2018

John Sutton, 1594 to 1672 of Norfolk, England, Hingham and Rehoboth, Mass.

John Sutton was baptized July 1594 in Great Snoring, Norfolk, England, the son of John Sutton and Dionysia Clements. He is my 11th great-grandfather on my grandmother Milly (Booth) Rollins’ side. Great Snoring is my new favorite place name!

Saint Mary the Virgin Mary Church, Great Snoring

There has been a lot of conflicting information about the identity of John’s wife. The latest research by Eugene Cole Zubrinsky shows he married Julian Adcocke 22 October 1620 at Eaton, Norfolk. Julian’s name is also seen as Judeth and Judith. She was baptized February 1598/99 in Attleborough, Norfolk, the daughter of John Adcocke and Elizabeth Eldred. 
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Church, Attleborough, Norfolk where Julian was baptized
John Sutton and Julian Adcocke were married 22 October 1620 at Eaton, Norfolk. 

St. Andrew's Church, Eaton, where Sutton's married with a modern addition

The Suttons immigrated to Plymouth Colony on the Diligent in 1638.

Children of John and Julian:

John Sutton who m. Elizabeth Howes/House
Elizabeth Sutton, did not immigrate to Plymouth with her family
Mary Sutton, married John Fitch
Judith Sutton, died 1631 in Great Snoring, Norfolk
Anne Sutton, married John Daggett
Hannah Sutton, d 1642 at Hingham
Esther Sutton, m. Richard Bowen  
Margaret Sutton, m. Joseph Carpenter

I descend from their son John.

The family settled in Hingham, moving to Rehoboth about 1649. In June 1644 John Sutton participated in a division of Rehoboth woodland. In Jan 1644(/45), he was one of 18 men who "have forfeited their lots for not fencing, or not removing their families according to a former order."

Most of these men, including Sutton, were still among the proprietors who registered their land holdings about that time. In June 1645 he was one of those who drew lots for a division on Rehoboth's Great Plain. On 26 December 1645 "it was voted that the house-lot and the rest of the accommodations that was laid out for John Sutton forasmuch as he hath not come to live amongst us, nor fulfilled the order agreed upon, and bearing date the 24th of the 9th month (October) 1643, be granted to William Devell."

Finally on 11 January 1648/9 the lot that was given unto George Robinson had been forfeited to the town and then was given to John Sutton. I’m not sure why the Suttons did not move to Rehoboth earlier.  No record is found of John Sr. deeding the Hingham land to John Jr.

Some people believe John Sutton was a follower of non-conformist Rev. Samuel Newman, but I need to do more research on that.

John Sutton died 1 Jun 1672 in Rehoboth, Bristol Co., Mass.

Julian Sutton died Jun 1678 in Rehoboth.


Eugene Cole Zubrinsky, Julian Adcocke, Wife of John 1 Sutton of Hingham and Rehoboth, Mass., and Their Family, NEHG Register, January 2013, vol 167:7-14

Eugene Cole Zubrinsky, The English Origin of John 1 Sutton of Hingham and Rehoboth, Mass., NEHG Register, Winter 2018

Howard Dakin French for William Arthur Whitcomb, Sutton Family, NEHGR, Vol 91, 1937