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, March 25, 2018

Edward Bumpus b. ca 1603, England to Plymouth to Duxbury to Marshfield, Mass.

Edward Bumpus, also seen as Edouad Bompasse and a bunch of other variations to the last name including Bump and Bumpas, was born about 1603. I’ve been hesitant to write about him as my Bumpus family is very much a work in progress, but I’d like to share what I have thus far. Edward is likely my 9th great-grandfather on my Grandfather Arthur Washburn Davis’ side of the family.

Edward’s last name is of French origin. Jeremy D. Bangs writes that he was probably Walloon and the correct spelling of his name would have been Bonpas. He came to Plymouth as a young man in November 1621 on the ship Fortune.

According to George Willson’s Saints and Strangers, he was a “Saint” who was with the Pilgrims at Leiden, Holland, so must have shared their Separatist beliefs.  Edward received one acre in the 1623 land division at Plymouth as he was a passenger on the Fortune. In 1627 he received a share of the cattle as part of Isaac Allerton’s company, indicating he was single. He wasn’t on the 1633 list of Freeman, which was unusual.

About 1630 Edward married Hannah, whose maiden name is unknown, and they had at least twelve children, first eight being recorded at Marshfield. This list is by no means set in stone!

1.      Sarah born 9 March 1631
2.      Elizabeth born 9 March 1633
3.      John born 02 Jun 1636
4.      Edward born 15 Apr 1638, died unmarried
5.      Joseph born 15 Feb 1639(?/40)
6.      Isaac born March 1642 who likely died young
7.      Jacob born 25 March 1644
8.      Hannah born 03 Apr 1646, died unmarried
9.      Philip born abt. 1648
10.  Thomas born about 1660
11.  Mary born about 1652
12.  Samuel b. about 1654, died unmarried, fighting in King Phillip’s War in 1675

Savage gives them a daughter Faith born ca 1631. Others say that Faith may have been a twin to Sarah and that she died at birth or shortly after. Others say there is no evidence of a daughter Faith.

For years I believed I descend from Thomas who married in 1679 Phebe Lovell, eldest daughter of John Lovell of Barnstable. From the Bumpus genealogy and other sources, I thought my line then went: Samuel who married Joanna Warren, Thomas who married Mercy Stewart, Jonathan who married Martha Chubbuck, Rowland who married Lucy Nye Pierce. Unfortunately it has been found that Jonathan, who was from Wareham, was not the son of Thomas and Mercy. So while I know they connect back to Edward Bumpus somehow, I’m not certain exactly how. I wrote about Jonathan and Martha here. and Rowland and Lucy here, here and here.

Edward sold his acre of Plymouth land in 1628 and was granted 20 acres of land on Duxbury Bay where he built a house. In March of 1634/35 he sold his Duxbury property to John Washburn and was allowed to "take up land in another place.” In March of 1644/45 when the boundaries of Marshfield were laid, his property was included. A map showing the 1637 location of settlers’ homes in Duxbury shows Edward and Hannah's home near the Marshfield line, by Duck Hill River, with no other homes nearby.

Sometime before September 1645 Edward sold his property to Solomon Lenner. On the 15 July 1653 Edmond Chandler of Duxbury exchanged his rights in lands in Satuckquett (Satucket=Brewster?) for Edward Bumpus's lands and rights in Cushenett and Coaksett (Westport and Dartmouth?). In 1655, with the consent of his wife Hannah, Edward Bumpus of Marshfield sold to Edmond “Chandeler” of Duxbury, the Duck Hill land lying between the lands of John Rouse (Rose?) and the lands of Edmond Chandeler.

Some researchers have him as one of the original proprietors of Middleborough, but I don’t think that is accurate. Or perhaps he had land there but did not settle there. 

Edward wasn’t much for public service. He is included in the 1643 list of men able to bear arms at Marshfield. He was on the jury in 1654 and 1655 and took the oath of fidelity at Duxbury in 1657.
After 1656 he seems to have lost control of his properties and through lack of support in the family he and his wife Hannah were to some extent dependent upon the community for their well-being. In 1656 Edward was described as "one of the town's poor" and was loaned a cow. In 1663 there was a contribution for his relief with 12.5 bushels of corn collected from townspeople. Some people mentioned him in their wills, leaving him corn and wheat. Hannah was placed in the Winter and Hewitt families to be taken care of in her old age.

Although Edward and his sons as "first borne in the colony" were eligible for grants, they did not take advantage of their positions. However in the next generation several branches of the family prospered and left good estates. It is quite strange to me that Edward and Hannah had a large family yet none of them took care of their parents. It makes me wonder if they were difficult people who drove their kids away, but it doesn’t seem that way since townspeople were kind to them. That Edward started out as a landowner and ended up as a poor man indicates to me he either suffered from poor health or made bad decisions.                                           
From Marshfield Town Meeting records: 14 August 1683 the inhabitants have voted that Christopher Winter shall demand & receive into his custody the goods of Edward Bumpus & his wife, which is at Joseph Rose's, their bedding & clothes and what is theirs only for the said persons to enjoy for their comfort & benefit during their lives and Edward & his wife shall have power at their death to dispose of what is left of it to their children or otherwise as they care. 

There is one case in Plymouth records concerning the abuse of parents by their own child. This is the case of Edward Bumpas, who was brought to court on 4 July 1679 for "striking and abusing his parents" for which he was whipped at the post (PCR 6: 20). However, it states in the record that "hee was crasey brained, otherwise hee had bine put to death or otherwise sharply punished.” Abusing one's parents was a very serious crime in Plymouth Colony according to this statement.

Edward and Hannah had other hardships to endure with their children. 8 June 1651 John Bumpus, who would have been just 15 years old, was sentenced to be whipped for "idle and lacivius behavior."

On 10 June 1662 Thomas Bird was sentenced to be whipped twice for making adulterous attempts on Hannah Bumpus and she was sentenced to be publicly whipped for yielding to him and not making such resistance as she should. Bird was also to pay 10 pounds to her as part satisfaction for the wrong he had done her. I assume this was Hannah the daughter of Edward and Hannah and not the elder Hannah. She is also referred to as “distracted” in another record, so perhaps she had some issues as well as her brother Edward.

Marshfield records the deaths of Edward and Hannah: "Hannah, widow of old Edward Bumpuas, died 12 Feb 1693." Edward's death is unrecorded but he died before 5 Mar 1683/84 when Hannah is named as the Widow Bumpus in the will of Martha (Winter) Hewitt.

Sources Not Listed Above:

Jeremy Dupertuis Bangs, Strangers and Pilgrims, Travellers and Sojourners, Leiden and the Foundations of Plymouth Plantation, GSMD, 2009

Lynn Albert Bumpus, A Genealogy of the Descendants of Eduoad Bompasse of the Ship Fortune, 1986

Eugene Stratton, Plymouth Colony, Its People and History, 1986

Mrs. John E. Barclay The Bumpus Family of New England, TAG 43:65 (April 1967)

Carle Franklin Bumpus, Bompasse, Bumpas, Bump, Bumpus and Allied Families 1621-1981, rev. 1985

Jason Jordan, Domestic Violence in Plymouth Colony, Historical Ethnography, April 1998

Amos Otis, Genealogical Notes of Barnstable Families, being a reprint of the Amos Otis Papers, originally published in the Barnstable Patriot, Volume 1 and 2, 1888

Monday, March 19, 2018

Henry Atkins b. England ca 1617, died Eastham, Mass., before 1700

Henry Atkins was born England say1617 (based on typical age of men at marriage). He immigrated to Plymouth Colony by 1643 when he was on the Plymouth list of men able to bear arms. He settled in Eastham on Cape Cod before 1655. He is my 9th great-grandfather on my grandmother Milly (Booth) Rollins’ side of the family.

He married, first, Elizabeth Wells at Plymouth on 9 July 1649. She was born likely in England about 1621. They had children Mary (died young), Samuel born Eastham 1651 (died in 1675 fighting in King Phillip’s War) and Isaac born 1657. Elizabeth died at Eastham in 1662. 

Henry married, second, Bethiah Linnell at Eastham on 25 Mar 1664. They had eight children, all born Eastham: Desire b. 1665, John b. 1666 (died young), Nathaniel b. 1667, Joseph b. 1669, Thomas b. 1671, John b. 1674, Mercy b. 1676, and Samuel b. 1679. I descend from Joseph who married Martha Pease. Henry would have been in his early 60s when Samuel was born. 

I wrote about Joseph and Martha Atkins here.

Bethiah Linnell was born 1641, the daughter of Robert Linnell and Peninah Howes. She married, second, at Eastham in 1701, Stephen Hopkins, the son of Giles and Katherine (Whelden) Hopkins. Giles and his father Stephen Hopkins were Mayflower passengers. Bethiah and Stephen removed to Harwich, in an area that is now Brewster, where she died 25 March 1726 at age 85.

Henry Atkins is mentioned among the freemen of Eastham 22 May 1655. He served on juries in 1653. He was Eastham constable in 1657 and 1659, and surveyor of highways in 1674, 1675, and 1676.

On 12 May 1655 John Morton of Plymouth conveyed to Henry Atkins of Eastham his dwelling house, etc. in Eastham bought of Mr. John Major, Sr., sometime inhabitant of Eastham.

He bought much of his real estate in Eastham of Mr. John Mayo, 21 April 1659 when he purchased five acres lying near John Mayo Jr., 4 acres of cedar swamp, and a lot of meadow at the harbor's mouth toward Rock Harbor. His other purchases, a piece of meadow at Great Meadow and Boat Meadow were confirmed 25 April the same year.

In 1659 Henry witnessed a receipt, signing with his mark.

Henry died before 21 August 1700. He made a will that was proved 13 Oct 1700. His estate was valued at 181 pounds 11 shillings. His inventory was presented August 1700. He desired to be buried in the old burying ground at Eastham. He remembered his children in his will, although only Isaac by name, giving each just a shilling. His wife “Bethya” was named as executrix of his will.

The Mayfower Descendant, July 1937, printed a transcription of Henry’s inventory and a summary of his will.

 [p. 113] On 21 August, 1700, The estate "of Henry Atkins late deceased praised att Eastham" by "David Melvil and Thomas Paine Junr".
"his housing Lands and meadow" in Eastham valued at £100; "one bed in the garrets" £2, 16s. The total was £181, 11s. The estate owed £6.
On 28 August, 1700, "Bethya Adkins Widow .... of Henry Adkins" made oath to the inventory.

The will of "Henry Adkins of Eastham" was not dated. Bequests were as follows:
To "my son Isaac Adkins one shilling in money"
To "all the Rest of my Children on shilling apeice in money"
"I do give unto my loving wife Bethya all my whole Estate both Reall and sonall for to be att her dispose"
"I do make .... my loving wife bethya my whole and sole Executor"
The witnesses were Jonathan Sparrow and Samuel Treate.
On 3 October, 1700, "Then Samuel Treat Gent and Jonathan Sparrow Esq." made oath that they saw "the above named Henry Atkins signe and Seale this Instrument" and it was probated.

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

Josiah Paine, Early Settlers of Eastham, Book 2, Library of Cape Cod History and Genealogy, No. 32, 1916

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

Gary Boyd Roberts, NEHGR 9:282, Mayflower Source Records p. 598

Torrey’s New England Marriages to 1700

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Gabriel Whelden ca 1590-1654 of Nottingham, England and Yarmouth and Malden, Massachusetts

Gabriel Whelden was born ca 1590, possibly in Basford, Nottinghamshire, England, possibly the son of Henry Whelden. Baptismal records from that time period are missing. He is my 11th great-grandfather on my grandmother Milly (Booth) Rollins’ side of the family. His last name is sometimes spelled Whilden, Wheldon or Whelding. He worked as a tailor, a miller, a highway surveyor and farmer. He signed his will with a mark and his inventory does not mention books, so it seems he was illiterate.

Gabriel was married by 1611, possibly in Basford, although no marriage record is found. In 1637 his wife’s name was Jane, but it is not known is she was his first wife and mother to all of his children. Gabriel and his wife had eight children baptized St. Leodegarius Church in Basford from 1612 to 1630:

Thomas who died young
John who died young

I descend from Katharine who married Mayflower passenger Giles Hopkins. I wrote about them here. 

St. Leodegarius Church in Basford  source: nottshistory.org.uk
On 4 April 1617, William Stanford, tailor of Somercotes, Derbyshire, England, leased a close of land in Basford to Gabriel Whelden, "blacksmith of Basford."  He served as church warden at Basford in 1622. His uncle Thomas Whelden held this position in 1603.Thomas's 8 March 1609/10 will contains left considerable land and personal items to his nephew Gabriel, as he apparently did not have children of his own. The will also mentions his brother Henry, presumably Gabriel's father.

In Aug 1637, John Hutchinson, gentleman of Basford, drew a deed of exchange of land in Basford and surrounding areas with Gabriel Whelden, "husbandman of Basford," and his wife Jane.

Half a year later, in February 1637/8, an inventory was made regarding a piece of Gabriel's property and included a kiln house, mill house, dwelling house, etc. to be leased by a Henry Boot if the property is purchased by John Holles 2nd Earl of Clare. Says: "his desire is to have an answer speedly that he may...prepare for New England," referring to Gabriel.

On 10 March 1637/8, Gabriel made two transactions. As "yeoman of Basford" he transferred his property for over 55 pounds to John, Earl of Clare (same property outlined in the inventory). The Earl then appointed an attorney to possess the lands in the tenure of Gabriel Whelden, with Gabriel receiving a bond of 120 pounds from the Earl. On 24 March 1637/8, Gabriel assigned to the Earl a lease of a close of arable land.

The "wife of Gabriell Wheeldon, miller" was one of two residents of Basford presented as religious sectarians before 1642. Persecution of those that failed to follow the tenets of the Church of England was a major reason for the Great Migration to New England from 1620 to 1640, and this record suggests Gabriel's immigration to New England may have been largely because of this religious persecution.

He immigrated to Massachusetts in 1638 or 39, settling first at Dedham, Norfolk County. Evidence he lived there is in the form of a 29 June 1639 letter his daughter Katharine wrote and sent home to England reporting the death of her sister, Martha "Weelden" of Dedham, drowned about 12 days before.

He received permission from Plymouth officials on 3 September 1638 to settle Yarmouth, Barnstable County (in an area that is now Dennis). Until then only Stephen Hopkins had been granted land there to grow hay but not to remove there. When he settled at Yarmouth he was about 60 years old. He lived in the Mayfair area on the north shore of the Bass River and near Follins Pond, very close to the present line between Dennis and Yarmouth sometimes called The Head of the Pond. He lived near his son-in-law Richard Taylor.

His business partnership with William Lumpkin and Hugh Tilley in owning a skiff was probably the first in town. In a 1641 court session Lumpkin and Tilley were ordered to pay him 15 shillings for the third part of the skiff. The loss of his part had made Wheldon unable to "fetch fish." Upon payment, the skiff was to belong to Lumpkin and Tilley.

Gabriel was a Highway Surveyor, but otherwise not active in Yarmouth affairs, perhaps because of his age.

Charles Pope, in The Pioneers of Massachusetts, mentions Gabriel went to Lynn in Essex County before Malden, but no documentation to support this has been found. Gabriel’s final home was in Malden, Middlesex County. He sold much of his Yarmouth land to Edward Sturgis but his sons retained the grant on the banks of Bass River, which stayed in the family until the 1960s. Several of his descendants were master mariners.

He may have been from Arnold, Nottinghamshire, since on 21 October 1653 he and his son John sold lands there to William Crofts of Lynn, Massachusetts [Essex County Deeds, i 24]. Basford, where Gabriel’s children were baptized, is three miles southwest of Arnold. Both parishes are in Sherwood Forest, just north of Nottingham.

The will of Gabriel Whelden of Malden dated "11. 12. 1653" (which Savage read as 11th month (e.g. January), 12th day, 1653/54, gives 10 shillings to the Malden Church, and all the rest of his estate to his wife Margaret Whelding, including house, land, cattle, corn and  "what money is due unto mee from William Crofts of Linne." It was signed by mark and witnessed by John and Nathaniel Upham, James Laenard and ----- Matthews (Original will, docket #24, 387; copy in Middlesex Probates 1:113). The will was presented for probate, 4 (2) 1654, when the Uphams were sworn as witnesses.

An original, undated, inventory survives, and includes his house lot, house frame, cattle, pigs, corn, wheat, spinning wheel, farm equipment, and household items. Total estate value was a modest 40 pounds 11 shillings, 8 pence. The widow Margaret survived her husband but no probate or death date is found for her. It is unusual his will does not mention children, and the most likely explanation is that Gabriel gave them their portions of his estate either at marriage or by gifts of money or deeds to Barnstable County land.

Records show that the sons, Henry and John, and son-in-law Richard Taylor were not satisfied with the terms of the will.

From Middlesex County court records: To the Constable of maulden or his deputie. You are required to attach the body or goods of Margrett Weilden, late widdow of Gabriel Weilden, and to take bond of her to the value of fourscore plus tenn pounds with sufficient suerties for her appearance at the next Court holden at Cambrdge ye wd day of ye 8 mo. 55, then and there to anser ye complaynt of Henry Weilden John Weilden, and Rich: Taylor Taylor and Rich: Taylor husbandman, for withholding their parts or portions of an estate which their late father Gabriell Weilden was possessor or owner of in his life and soe make a true returne hereof under your hand. Dated the 28 of the 5th mo. 55. By the Court Tho: Starr.

That the name Richard Taylor is listed twice causes some confusion. Gabriel’s daughter Ruth married Richard Taylor and there are some who believe his daughter Mary married another Richard Taylor and that this is proof of that. I’d like that to be the case as I descend from Richard Taylor, but I’m not convinced. Others believe it is a clerk error that Richard Taylor is listed twice, but odd he is given two different occupations.

Gabriel died in Malden, Massachusetts between 11 February and 4 April 1654. It is likely he is buried at Bell Rock Cemetery in Malden, without a surviving headstone. At the time of his death his wife was Margaret, who seems to be his second wife and not the mother of his children.

I have seen other researchers claim that Margaret was a Native American, but I don’t believe this is valid.

Nancy Thacher Reid, Dennis, Cape Cod from Firstcomers to Newcomers, 1639 – 1993, 1996

Eugene Stratton, Plymouth Colony, Its People and History, 1986

James W. Hawes, Cape Cod Library of Local History & Genealogy A Facsimile Edition of 108 Pamphlets Published in the Early 20th Century. Volumes I & II, edited by Leonard H. Smith, Genealogical Publishing, Baltimore, MD, Early Wheldens of Yarmouth, Pamphlet #43

Maclean W. McLean, John and Mary (Folland) Whelden of Yarmouth, Mass., The American Genealogist, vol. 48(Jan 1972)

Jan Porter and Daniel F. Stramara, Jr., The Origin of Gabriel Whelden of Yarmouth and Malden, Massachusetts, NEHGR, vol 163, October 2009

NEHGR, Vol. 165, July 2011, "The Two Richard Taylor Families of Early Yarmouth, Mass.," by Jillaine S. Smith