Was Gary’s Great Grandmother Related to Chief Justice John Marshall?

My friend Gary recently sent me a question. He was wondering if his great grandmother was related to Chief Justice John Marshall? He also sent a link to findagrave.com:

Gary’s Maternal Side

I already have a tree for Gary’s side, but Mary Jane Marsh is on his maternal side. I’ll need to build that tree out and figure out Justice Marshall’s tree.

Here is Gary’s mother. That’s all I have so far. Here is Sylvia in 1940.

She shows as John Evans Aunt which is interesting. The 1930 Census is also a bit confusing:

Why would Sammy have a son with a different last name?

Also Sylvia’s last name is given as Marsh not Marshall, but there are Marshall’s close by:

I guess the Marshall comes in earlier. Amanda Marsh was an Evans and her mother was a Marshall.

Amanda Jane Evans Clayton Marsh

So, if Amanda was a Clayton, then these other children were hers from a previous marriage. That makes sense. Here is Amanda in 1910:

Amanda’s husband was a dredger.

Here is Amanda in 1910:

This shows that Amanda’s mother Mary was born in Maryland, but that her father was born in Virginia. Amanda’s father was lister as a ‘Sailor’.

Chief Justice John Marshall

Here is what Wikipedia has:

I bring this up now because Justice Marshall was from Virginia. That means that we are at least headed to the right location with Amanda’s mother. Also Justice Marshall had a lot of sons. If he had no sons, we could stop here. 

Mary Jane Marshall

Let’s see if Mary Jane Marshall leads us to Chief Justice Marshall. Here is a record that ties Amanda Evans back to Mary Jane Marshall:

Here is Ewell, Maryland:

Here is some more on Amanda:

I’m not sure how the half siblings fit in. Between findagrave.com and Social Security, we seem to be on the right track. Here is Mary J in 1880 with her family:

The Census shows that Mary’s father John was born in Virginia as was his father and mother.

John W Marshall

Based on the 1880 Census, John was born around 1840 in Virginia. Here is John 10 years earlier in 1870:

John must have moved to Maryland around 1865 – an interesting year.

John was in Accomack, Virginia in 1860:

He was also born in Accomack:

Here is part of a death record for Hettie L Barnes. She is probably the Hester L Marshall who shows up in the 1880 Census:

If correct, this gives her mother’s name as Julia Anne Tyler.

Summary to this Point

So far, I have have traced one of Gary’s lines back to John W Marshall. He was born in Accomack County, Virginia in about 1839. The question is whether this John W Marshall descends from Chief Justice John Marshall. Chief Justice John Marshall was born September 24, 1755 in Fauquier County, VA which is to the West of Washington, DC.

I did find a book from 1890:

This book has Chief Justice John Marshall in it, but I didn’t see any John W Marshall at least in the index.

Back to John W Marshall

At this point I am going to Ancestry Tree hints for John W. Ancestry has 10 trees for John W.

The eight trees that have parents for John W Marshall have these two parents. As I have no other ready clues, I’ll go with John Taffy as the father of John W.

Another web page has this information:

It would be nice to find this family in the 1850 Census.

I did find a John T Marshall on an agricultural Census. That John was also a slave holder and corresponds to this John:

However, the other names don’t match well.

John Taffy Marshall

Here is John in 1860:


John is listed as a Sailor. That could explain the difficulty in finding the family in 1850? Rachel Evans is listed as being from Maryland. This could be Eleanor’s mother. Perhaps the family was in Maryland in 1850.

Going Back Further Using Other People’s Trees

There are 10 trees for John Taffy Marshall:

They all have the above parents.  However, two trees mention Germantown, Virginia. In one tree John A was born there and died and in Accomack. In the other tree he was born in Germantown and died in Accomack. My guess is that these two occurances of Germantown are not correct and are an attempt to link the family to Chief Justice John Marshall.

John A Marshall Born 1775

This John was born in an interesting year. There are also 10 trees for John A Marshall.

These trees have as a father Samuel Marshall born 1745.

Samuel Marshall  Jr Born 1745

Here is Somerset County. Ancestry trees have Samuel born here:

This seems a likely place for Samuel based on the geography of the area. Assuming these trees are correct, that rules out Chief Justice John Marshall as Gary’s ancestor and rules in Samuel Marshall.





Newly Found Rathfelder Records

I recently joined the Latvia Genealogy Facebook Page which has been a good thing. Right away someone found my grandfather’s birth and baptismal record.

It looks like my grandfather Alexander was a year older than I thought. I had that his birth was on 11 June 1894. This record is from 1893. This record is from St Paul’s Lutheran Church in Riga.

It looks impressive.

When was Alexander born? The months of June and July look similar in German:

Juni—named for the goddess Juno, patroness of marriage and of well being of women
Juli—named after Julius Caesar. Renamed from Quinctilis, which meant ‘fifth’ because July used to be the fifth month

The month would be July. The year would be 1893. That leaves the day.

I’m having trouble figuring out the number of the day. The day on the right must be the baptism (Taufe). So that date must be later than the first.

Here are the German words for the 15th, 16th and 17th:

  • fünfzehnte
  • sechzehnte
  • siebzehnte

Alexander’s sponsors:

They look to be Martin Wilhelm Stahlberg and Ottilie Gagnus. I assume that Ottilie was a relative.

Alexander’s WWI Draft Registration Card

This hint came up at Ancestry:

At this time, Alexander apparently went by Sigfried. Here, his birth is listed as June 11, 1893. I’ll go with that date for his birth. This record was from 1917, so about three years before the 1920 Census. Here is where Alexander aka Siegfried lived in 1917:

Siegfried was a citizen of Russia and worked as a L. Guard (?). He lists his mother as being dependent on him for support. The second page states that his right leg was shorter by three inches:

This record from about a year and a half after Alexander entered the US.

More on Leo Rathfelder

I was able to re-find Leo’s birth and baptism record:

He was baptized in 1896 at St Peter’s Lutheran in Riga:

This Church was closer to the Center compared to St Paul’s where Alexander was baptized. Perhaps this represented a move by the Rathfelder family within Riga. I wonder if there is an address on the birth record above. It could be below the birth date. Here is St Peter’s:

The website says it is a 15th century Church.

Passport Information for Leo

The same helpful person that found Alexander’s birth and baptismal record, found passport information for Leo at FamilySearch:

This document appears to be from 1926, so when Leo was about 30:

Here are the links to Leo’s passport information:




You need to be signed in to FamilySearch to see the results. Here is another photo from a later passport:

One of the files contains 50 pages of images. This must be due to the fact that Leo worked on a ship and traveled a lot. If I understood Latvian, I would know more about what all the files say. As there are three photos in the files, that must represent three passports. Use of these passports began around 1919, so my grandfather would not have had one.

The stamps in one of Leo’s passport records will add some color to my Blog:

These records fill in some details on the lives of brothers Alexander and Leo Rathfelder


My Daughter-In-Law’s Genealogy: Part 2

In my last post, I looked at my daughter-in-law Sarah’s Vezina heritage back to France. I also started looking at her Portuguese side. In this Blog, I’d like to look more into the Portuguese side. This is as far as I got in her tree for Sarah’s paternal side:

All the green leaves are hints. However, some are just directory listings. I have that all of Sarah’s paternal great-grandparents were born in Portugal. It would be nice to pin a specific place to these people.

Manuel Pimental Born 1890

I have that Manuel was a barber. Here in the 1930 Census. In that Census, I am interested in the Immigration year and Naturalization status for Manuel and his wife Mary or Maria:

Actually I need the family members also:

That is so I can make sure I have the right family in the 1920 Census:

The daughter Mary was born in Portugal. Now the immigration year is the same for Manuel and the two Marys wich makes more sense. Now the oldest three show as aliens. It may be that Manuel got his naturalization between 1920 and 1930.

In 1920, the family was living at 74 Hope Street in New Bedford:

From the Census, it appeared that many families were living at this address.

Manuel Pimental’s Naturalization

This should be the key to linking Manuel back tot he old country:


As a bonus, there is a photo of Sarah’s great-grandfather.

The Azores

I believe this is it. Perhaps JJ and Sarah will visit:

The population in 2011 was 436.

It appears that Sarah’s Pimental’s roots were in a remote village on a remote Island.

The naturalization record leads to a shipping record dated 15 April 1910 which can tell us a lot:

First, Maria appears to have been born when her mom was 15. Also the spelling here is Pimentel. I’m guessing that this was the original spelling. Manual’s signature seems to spell his name the same way on his Declaration of Intention above.

These columns can be helpful:

Manuel gave as a reference, his neighbor:

Here we also have the proper spelling of Achada that agrees with the Google Map above. The intended destination after arriving in New York was New Bedford.

Manuel arrived with $15. He noted that he had visited New Bedford twice before the current trip:

Once Manuel got to New Bedford, he planned on staying with his brother-in-law on Coggeshall Street:

Mother and daughter Maria were born in Achada:

On Manuel’s Declaration above he was said to be born in ‘Achado’. Here he appears to be born in Rehada. I’m not sure about the ‘R’. Perhaps they all say Achada but were written differently for some reason.

Records from the Azores

There are records from the Azores but they are difficult to read. I go to this website and find this form:

To get to Achada Baptisms, I made the following choices:

I have that Manuel was born on October 12, 1887:

According to the above, he was also married on his birthday October 12, 1893. According to the findagrave.com website, Manuel was born in 1886:

This cemetery is on Allen Street:

According to this web site on Azores Genealogy, I should be able to find out a lot of information from these records:


I tried looking at some of these records and was having trouble figuring them out. Perhaps marriage records would be easier as suggested above. However, the dates are a bit confusing. Maria is listed as 19 years old when she arrived in New York in 1910. If she married in 1903, she would have been about 12 or 13! Further, Maria’s birthdate is listed as August 30, 1893. Does that seem right? That means that I have a lot of information and dates, but are the dates accurate?

Some 1903 Marriage Discoveries

Here is marriage #4 for Achado:

I’m reading something like Maneul Rego Pimental and Dona Rosada ? Franco. Marriage #6 from November of the same year had a Maria Franco married to someone else, but was Franco her middle name?


Let’s concentrate on Marriage #4. Here is the Achado Church:

The first four lines of the marriage record appear to include the date and information about the Church:

Outubro is October in Portuguese, so the month is right. I don’t know how to read the day.

I would like to find out the names of the parents of Manuel and Dona (aka Maria). Here is my best guess for Manuel’s parents:

Legitimo means legitimate – or we may that Manuel was the natural son of Manuel Rego and Dona Maria de Lur. At least it looks like Lur.

That leaves this for Manuel’s wife’s parents:

Julio de Medeiros Franco and Dona Maria Rosa de Men? Unfortunately, the surname went on to another line. Here is the end of the record:

That would be Manuel’s signature I assume. The others are perhaps witnesses or even the priest? There is a lot of information on the record. I imagine that some information had to do with occupations. If Sarah has some Portuguese-speaking connections, we may get a better read on this record.

Azorean Baptismal Records

Now that I have broken the Portuguese record barrier by getting some basic information from a marriage record, I would like to find birth records for Maria aka Dona Rosa Franco and Manuel Rego Pimentel. I am guessing that the Rego could be an important hint due to the number of Portuguese Manuels.

A Possible Baptismal Record for Manuel Pimental

Here is Record #68 from October 1886:

In the margin, there is a note about America. However, the parents look different than for the marriage record above:

That means that either I had the wrong marriage above or more likely, I have the wrong baptismal record here.

Jose Mendes Born 1892

I’ll take a break from Sarah’s Pimental side and look at the Mendes side. Jose was Sarah’s great-grandfather:

In 1940, Jose was a weaver at the Sowle Mill living at 55 Collette Street.

There were more children on the next page.

Sowle was the Ancestry transcription. It was actually the Soule Mill on Sawyer Street:

Here are Collette Street and Sawyer Street on a map:

Jose’s WWII Draft Registration Card is helpful:

I am looking for Jose’s European roots. Here, he reports he is from Melo Portugal. Here is what Google Maps shows me for Melo:

The Draft Card also gives a different name for Jose’s wife. The Census had her as Elvira. Here she is Elrida. The 1930 Census shows much the same information. However, the immigration columns are important:

Jose, his wife and eldest daughter are listed as aliens. This also shows that Jose came to the US first and his wife and daughter came the next year which would not be unusual.

Next is the 1920 Census:

In 1920, Sarah’s grandmother Isabel was a baby. This shows that Jose had immigrated in 1916 and that he was an alien. They lived at 381 Coggeshall Street:

Here is 397 Coggeshall, so I guess the building is no longer there:

Here is Jose’s burial marker:

It looks like the Elvira name stuck for his wife. They were buried in St. John’s Cemetery where Manual Pimental was buried.

More on Jose Mendes

There area 10 trees at Ancestry that mention Jose Mendes. Two have parents for Jose:

Passenger Lists for Jose Mendes

This looks like Jose’s record:

This was from May 12, 1913 on the Caledonia. Note that Jose’s middle name was Augusto which is what the tree above had for Jose’s father.

Jose gave his last address as Mello Portugal. He lists wife Maria as his closest relative. I think it says her address is d’Annuciae? Sousa, Mello. His destination is New Bedford. The ship left from Scotland and landed in New York City. Jose’s plan was to stay with a friend on Coggeshall Street:

Jose was five foot three and gave his birthplace as Mello:

That is good news, because that menas that this WWI Draft Registration is also Sarah’s Jose:

However, Jose gives a different birthday here than he does on his WWII Draft Registration. Also here he gives Cambezes, Portugal as his birthplace. He also says he is single, so possibly there were two Jose Mendes? [Note: This was the wrong guy – see below.]

Three Joseph Mendes on Coggeshall Street

I was a little surprised to find three Joseph Mendes on Coggeshall Street in the 1919 New Bedford Directory:

Isn’t that confusing? Clearly Sarah’s Joseph was living at 381 Coggeshall Street. Soon after he moved to Collette Street because that is where we find the family in the 1925 Directory:

In the previous column there were a Jose and Joseph living on Coggeshall:

That means that the WWI Registration Card for Jose Ahes Mendes is not for Sarah’s great-grandfather. Also the shipping record for the Jose Augusto Mendes from Villa Cortez, Portugal was also the wrong person. I can weed out that record.

Here is the correct record again in context:

The second M in the column menas that Jose was married. The no and no meant he could not read or write. Antonio Viegias may have been a relative as Jose’s wife name was believed to be Elvira Conccica Viegas. However, his Portugal contact from this record appears to be his wife listed as

Maria d’Annuciaedo Souza. Confusing. He was from what looks to be Nabaes:

However, it is actually Nabais:

By the way, one of the other Joseph Mendes’ was from Vila Cortez Da Serra. Also note Melo not far from Nabais. Probably less than a mile and a half away. Here is a photo of Melo now that I’m sure I have the right place:

I’m sure the area is rich with history:

Melo is part of the municipality of Gouveia in the district of Guarda.

Melo was known for farming and historically for sheep and weaving. When Jose Mendes came to the New Bedford, he was listed as a weaver in a cotton mill there.

Melo Vital Records

FamilySearch has records here:

It looks like my only choice for Melo is the Parish of Santo Isidoro. I have that Jose was born on 5 March 1891, so let’s give that a shot:

When I choose Batismos, Matrimonios 1787-1910, I get this message:

It appears that I am out of luck as far as at-home research for Melo, Portugal.

Summary and Conclusions

  • I was successful in getting Sarah’s Pimental line back to the Azores and her Mendes line back to Portugal.
  • Parish records exist online for the Azores but the specific records that I was looking for were difficult to find
  • I couldn’t find Parish records online for Melo, Portugal
  • Sarah had heard about her background from mainland Portugal but was unaware of here Azorean roots.
  • Both of these places look like they would be interesting to visit.


My Daughter-In-Law’s Genealogy

I have never looked into my daughter-in-law’s genealogy, but would like to do that now. Sarah is Portuguese and French Canadian. It would be nice to get back to Portugal and Canada with her heritage and find out some more about it. Sarah’s recent ancestry is in New Bedford. My ancestors were also immigrants to New Bedford but from England.

Starting Sarah’s Genealogy

I didn’t have to add a new tree for Sarah. I just added her onto my existing tree at Ancestry:

This is how far I got yesterday working through Ancestry on my phone. I blurred out some of Sarah’s mom’s information. I’ll have to ask Sarah more about her maternal grandparents. Sarah has roots in New Bedford as both her parents were born there.

Joseph Pimental

I lifted Ken’s parents from another Ancestry tree that focused in on the Mendes side. I checked with Sarah and it was right. Ken was born when his parents were older. Here is Ken’s father’s Joseph’s World War II Draft Registration:

He lived on Coffin Ave in New Bedford and named his mother as a contact.

The house on the right has a 194 on it.

Joseph worked at the Nonquitt Mills:

There was also a Census in 1940:

This Census tells us that Joseph’s parents were born in Portugal and that they owned their own house. There were two more children on the next page, so a total of 7 kids in 1940.

It looks like Manuel was a barber and Joseph was a cleaner at the factory in 1940.

Here is Joseph’s service record:

Sarah’s Mother’s Side

Sarah’s mother’s side is French Canadian. Sarah’s mother’s father was Joseph Roland Vezina. Here is young Roland in the 1940 Census:

He was living at 1012 Victoria Street in New Bedford. His father Roland was listed as a salesman for a baking company. The Census also says that Roland and Beatrice lived in Fall River in 1935.

This is the photo that Google maps has for that address:

Roland Vezina Sr

I’ll quickly jump back to Roland Vezina Sr. As per above, he was born in Fall River in 1910:

Both of Roland’s parents were born in Canada. Roland was from a large family:

They lived at 698 South Main Stree in Fall River in 1910:

Roland’s father George was listed as a tea merchant.

A Tale of Two George E Vezinas

George was born in Canada. Here is one page of his Naturalization records:

The good news about this record is that it gives his birth place. I think that he was from L’Ange Gardien. My first search for this place came up with this:

I may be way off on this based on the 1871 Census:

This shows George in St Michel, North Bellechasse.

That means that it would be a good idea to figure out where the place is listed on George’s Naturalization papers. Here is the 1881 Census:

I assume I have the right George here. It would help to have a marriage record or birth record for George. Fortunately, I found George’s baptismal record in L’Ange Gardien in 1862:

That means that the Census that I had for 1871 and 1881 showed the wrong George Vezina. Here is the right one in Salem in 1880:

Here is 144 Congress Street:

Further, we learn from George’s baptismal record that his mother’s full name was Marie Zoe Lefrancois.

Where Did the Vezinas Live in Canada? Looking for L’Ange Gardien

All indications point to L’Ange Gardien, but where exactly was this place? Here is a death record for an Albert Vezina. I assume that he was a priest:

He gives his birth place as Danville, Canada. Google Maps show Danville next to Asbestos Quebec:

Another trick is to look at the beginning of George’s baptismal book. This is a short book of about 12 pages:

This tells me that George was baptized in Montmorency. I had trouble finding a map of L’Ange Gardien.

This place is close to a tourist area which is the Montmorency Falls at Boischatel. I believe that Sarah’s husband, my son, has been there. L’Ange Gardien looks like a large place but it is not really. It is just highlighted on the map. Here is the view of L’Ange Gardien from the St. Lawrence River:

My French teacher wife tells me L’Ange Gardien means Guardian Angel.

Here are the Montmorency Falls:

In real life, they are more dramatic.

Here are some of Sarah’s ancestors so far:

I tried to pixelate some of the information for Sarah’s mother and grandmother as they are still alive. This shows out to two of Sarah’s third great-grandparents: Regis and Zoe.

More on the Vezina Family

Things are going pretty well, so I might as well see how far back I can get on the Vezina Line. Here is an 1860 marriage record for Regis, transcribed by Ancestry as Pregis – probably due to the handwriting.

This seems like a longer than usual marriage record.  Right now, I’m just following up on the Vezina line to see where it takes me. This marriage record gives the parents of Regis as Pierre and Elizabeth Côté. Here is Regis’ intention to become a citizen of the US:

Regis was a carpenter. Sometime between 1880 and 1887, the family moved from Salem to Fall River.

Pierre Vezina

On the marriage record above, Pierre is listed as Regis’ father. Here is Pierre’s marriage record from 1823:

This marriage took place at Chateau Richer:

According to Google Maps, Chateau is a small town not far from L’Ange Gardien:

At the time of Pierre’s marriage, he was a farmer.

Vezina in the 1700’s

From the marriage record above, Pierre’s father was also a Pierre. Pierre Vezina and Marie LaBerge married in 1795 in good old L’Ange Gardien:

This Pierre was the son of another Pierre Vesina. If the Pierre from the marriage record was 25 when he married, he would have been born around 1770. His mother’s name appears to be Marie-Anne Morray.

Next Pierre Vesina

Here is another marriage made in L’Ange Gardien:

This is the transcription. Here they have Marois for Marie Anne instead of the Morray I had guessed at from their son’s marriage record, but I think that is pretty close. I’m not coming up with a good guess for this Pierre’s mother:

However, I am getting Jean for the father. I have been waiting for the point where some of this information is written into books. This may be the point:

This shows Pierre as Pierre-Francois. The mother’s name that I couldn’t figure out was Marie Bernadine Roy. Notice that Vezina has gone to Vesina and now to Vesinat. It is not clear to me how the Tanguay Collection works, but my guess is that Francois was the father of Jean and another Pierre was the father of Francois. [Note: After further review, it appears that Pierre would be the father of Bernadine.]

Tracing Vesinats Back to the 1600’s

Now I am spoiled by the Tanguay Collection:

It looks like Francois who was born in 1681 had several children. This couple married in 1703:

That must be Francois’ signature above.

Here is the next Francois going back:

Here is another listing:

Now I see that the 1679 in bold must be the marriage date. I am not sure why there are two entries here. Here is some information from a website called Geni:

I assume that the reference to Cadet means the younger Francois as there appear to be two brothers named Francois.

La Rochelle

LaRochelle is an interesting place:

My understanding is that La Rochelle was a holdout of Protestant rebels. These rebels were besieged by the French government and starved. There was a TLC TV show called Who Do You Think You are? that highlighted this historical event. The show was about the ancestry of Tom Bergeron in Season 6, Episode 6. Here is one link that discusses the episode. Basically, Bergeron was surprised to find that he had a Protestant ancestor from La Rochelle. This ancestor converted to Catholicism amidst pressure and became a fille du roi. These were daughters of the king but not literally. They were women recruited to go to New France (Quebec) to help with the shortage of women there. It would be interesting to delve into Sarah’s La Rochelle connection sometime.

My Wife’s Vesina Connection

It turns out that my wife is connected on the Vesina side also. Her dad’s mother was French Canadian. Here is my wife’s paternal grandmother’s mother’s tree:

On the right is Marie Anne Vesina. Marie-Anne’s father Pierre was different than Sarah’s ancestor Pierre:

However, Pierre’s father was Francois Vesinat. Pierre Vesinat and Jeanne LeTartre married in 1701:

Two Francois Vesinats?

My interpretation of this Tanguay book is that there were two Francois Vesinats. My wife, Marie must be descended from the first (although I don’t see Pierre listed as a child) and my daughter-in-law descends from the second. The other thing is that both of these Francoises had Jacques as a father. That means that either there were two Jacques Vesinats or one Jacques who had two sons named Francois.

Here is one interpretation at Geneanet:

Putting It Together

My best guess is that Marie and Sarah are 10th cousins once removed going back to La Rochelle France.

That’s a lot of history.

Summary and Conclusions

  • I started with some basic genealogy on Sarah’s Portuguese side.
  • I quickly switched over to Sarah’s French Vezina/Vesina/Vesinat history. By the way, my wife tells me that an ‘s’ between two vowels is pronounced as a ‘z’. Perhaps that is why the Vesina name changed to Vezina.
  • Sarah’s Vezina family has deep roots in L’Ange Gardien, not far from the Montmorency Falls NE of Quebec City.
  • The first Vesinat to come to Quebec from France to Quebec was Jacques Vesinat. He was a master barrel maker which I am sure was an important trade in Quebec.
  • By using someone else’s work, I was able to get the Vezina Family back to La Rochelle, France. This was a hotbed of Protestantism. The French King squelched this movement for religious and political reasons in a brutal way.
  • I tried to connect Sarah’s genealogy to my wife’s as she has a Vesina in her ancestry. I ran into problems due to two apparent brothers both named Francois Vesinat. I came up with a likely connection for Sarah and Marie.
  • It would be a lot to fill out all of Sarah’s French Canadian ancestry. Sarah has two Frenh Canadian grandparents. At the level of Jacques Vesinat she would have over 2,000 French ancestors.
  • I’d like to look more at Sarah’s Portuguese ancestry to try to find out where in Portugal her ancestors lived.


My Pilgrim Connection to Kim

I have known Kim for quite a while. We both lived in Lexington, Massachusetts at the same time for a while and we both attended the same Church in Acushnet years ago. I recently posted a photo of the Mayflower leaving New Bedford Harbor and she told me that she descended from two of the Pilgrims, so I thought that I would look at that connection in this Blog.

My Cooke Connection with Kim

Kim says she has a connection to Pilgrim Francis Cooke through two of his daughters. Kim also gave me access to her Ancestry tree:

If I count correctly, Francis Cooke is Kim’s 10th great-grandparent. When I check my tree, Francis is also my 10th great-grandparent. I think that means that Kim and I are 11th cousins on this line. Here is my top-down look:

I can tell already that things may get complicated. I descend from John Cooke who married Sarah Warren. Kim tells me she descends from the Warren Pilgrim line also. Kim descends from Mary Cooke who was born about 20 years after John. John was probably born in Leyden and Mary saw her first light in Plymouth. I see in my Mayflower Families Book on the Cooke family that John had a falling out with the Pilgrims on theological issues and ended up in Dartmouth, Massachusetts. This seemed to be an area of Massachusetts where dissenters ended up. Mary appears to have lived in Barnstable for a while where her husband John Thompson served in public office and she died in Middleborough.

The Next Cooke Generation

I’m going about this backwards as genealogy should properly go from the present to the past:


My ancestor Sarah Cooke married Arthur Hathaway and probably died in Dartmouth. Kim’s ancestor married Thomas Swift in Weymouth.

Speeding Up the Process

I had some problems getting all the ancestors onto an Excel Spreadsheet, but here is Kim’s side:

Kim’s line went west from New York to Ohio to Oregon. Here is my side:

My ancestors all stayed in the same general area. Plus I’m off a generation from Kim. That means we must be 11th cousins once removed.

Kim’s Richard Warren Connection

Kim’s connection to Richard Warren is through the wife of Thomas Swift above. Her name was Rachel Stockbridge:

On my side, I descend from Joseph Warren in my most direct path, but I also descend from Mary Warren his sister more than once. Then I already mentioned Sarah Warren above:

Here I color coded Kim’s line in orange. Here is the next generation:

My ancestors were all born in Plymouth. Kim’s ancestor Hannah was born in nearby Marshfield. Here is the next generation:

This is taking more work than our Cooke Tree. In the next generation, I add another branch:


Actually, I added two branches because I missed Joseph Bartlett back in 1639. Now I can say I’m related 6 ways to Richard Warren. I’ve got to get all of these ancestors down to Hannah Bradford. She is my second great grandmother who has all the Pilgrim ancestors. Next I’ll add what we had from the Cooke analysis above:

On the Warren side, Kim and I are 12th cousins. So we are 1/2 generation further out than on the Cooke line.

Here is the Warren Tree filled out:

This shows I have these relationships to Kim on the Warren line:

  • Once a 10th cousin twice removed
  • Three times an 11th cousin once removed
  • Two times a 12th cousin

Looking for Kim’s Other Cooke Ancestor

Kim told me she descended from two daughters of Francis Cooke. Kim’s other Cooke ancestor was Jane Cooke:

These two were born 22 years apart. I take it that her mom, Hester Mahieu was a robust woman and made it through many difficulties.

A Question of Genealogy

So far, I haven’t looked into any of the genealogy. The Mayflower Families Book on Francis Cooke brings Kim’s Jane Cooke line into question. Kim’s tree has Jacob Mitchell as the daughter of Jane Cooke. The Mayflower Book shows that Jane had Elizabeth, Thomas and Mary with Experience Mitchell. However, at some point, Jane dies and Experience Mitchell marries Mary. Mary’s last name is unknown as is her marriage date and Jane’s death date. So things are quite uncertain. The reason for assigning the last five children to Experience and Mary Mitchell is that there is a gap between Experience’s first three children and the last five.

Here is where Francis Cooke lived:

This is in the center of current day Plymouth. Here is what it looks like today:

The Cooke property was probably near the present-day Court House Museum which is the white building in the photo above.

Here is a map of where Richard Warren lived closer to the Harbor:


  • I’m related to Kim 6 ways on the Richard Warren Line
  • I’m related to Kim 1 way on the Francis Cooke Pilgrim Line. Kim had another potential Cooke ancestor, but that ancestor has not been verified.
  • I showed where Francis Cooke and Richard Warren lived on Leydon Street
  • Francis Cooke and Richard Warren must have known each other. Also their children who Kim and I descended from must have known each other and probably down to the next generation. At some point I’m sure they lost touch.
  • I’m sure I have these Pilgrim connections going back 400 years with other people that I know who live in the area. Kim was more of a surprise as she did not grow up in Plymouth County.





My Nicholson Ancestors in Liverpool

I was recently looking up information on my mother’s grandmother Annie Nicholson and found a baptismal record for her and her sister Agnes from Liverpool. In that record, her father was listed as a saw maker. This was too much of a coincidence not to be true.

Nicholson Genealogy

Here is what I have at my Nicholson Web Page:

Ann is child 3 and Agnes is child for. This information is now probably wrong as I have them both being born in Sheffield. I had just assumed that they were born there as the Nicholson family history went back quite a ways in Sheffield. My assumption was that they emmigrated from Sheffield to Philiadelphia.

From Sheffield to Liverpool

The time that the Nicholson family was in Liverpool was not caught on the Census as the family was in Sheffield in 1861:


Parkwood Springs was part of Brightside:

It looks like Brightside is actually to the West of where I circled. At this time, William and Martha had a daughter who was 9 months old.

Not too long after the 1861 Census which was taken on April 7, the family moved to Liverpool. Sarah Ann was baptized there on January 19, 1862. I can’t make out William Nicholson’s profession other than he was a saw maker:

[Based on my research below, this says Fontenoy Street where the family lived in Liverpool before they moved to Bootle. ] This record is taken from the Bishop’s Transcript. That means that it was copied from another record. Sarah Ann’s sister Emma was baptized on the same day:

Here is a drawing of the downtown Liverpool St Peter’s Church from 1800:


My assumption is that Sarah Ann was born in Sheffield and Emma was born in Liverpool.

Ann Eliza and Agnes D

Ann Eliza was my great grandmother. Here is her baptismal record from St. Peter from 1865:

Ann Eliza was born in March and baptized in August. Also of interest is that the family lived in “Bootle”. Or Booth. But it looks like Bootle to me. Maybe the Beatles lived there. Bootle. Beatle. Here is Bootle to the North of Liverpool:

Bootle appears to be a little less than a mile from downtown Liverpool. My guess is that Ann Eliza and Agnes were born in Bootle.

Here is the baptismal record for Agnes:

This took place also at St. Peter’s Church in Liverpool on March 9, 1869.

From Bootle to Philadelphia

There was a tight time-frame for the family getting from Sheffield to Bootle. Now there was another tight time-frame for the Nicholson family moving to Philiadelphia. Here is the ship record for Martha and her children when they arrived in New York City:

William was likely already in Philadelphia at this time. Also it is interesting that Ann went by Eliza at this time. This record tells a story. Martha here traveling without her husband and her four girls from Liverpool to Queensland to New York City. From there they must have gone to Ellis Island and then made their way to Philadelphia where William must have prepared a place for them. My guess is that William missed the US Census that was held on June 1, 1870. However, according to the 1900 Census, William immigrated in 1868:

Let’s see what the 1910 Census says:

This shows he immigrated in 1870, and that he is naturalized. His wife also has an immigration date which doesn’t make sense as she is shown as being born in Pennsylvania.

Some More Parish Records from St Peter’s in Liverpool

My research friend in England reminded me that the Lancashire Online Parish Registers covers LIverpool. So I took a look there. Here is a confusing entry:

This looks like William and Martha were living in Liverpool in 1860 when Maria Baxter Nicholson was baptized. Here is a photo from 1901 of Fontenoy Street:

Here is an 1860 map showing Fontenoy Street:

Here is a modern map including the Beatles Statue:

However, the 1861 Census shows that my ancestors were living in Sheffield. William and Martha were married in 1856, so that would have given them time to have a daughter born in 1858. I can’t think that there were too many saw makers named William Nicholson who were married to a Martha who baptized their children in the same Church (St Peter, Liverpool).

Here is Maria in the 1861 Census in Liverpool The Baxters and others were living at 25 Fontenoy Street:

I might as well get more confused. Here Maria is a boarder or lodger at the house of William Baxter who is also a saw maker. Living in the house was Ann Ellis widow aged 66. So did William move back to Sheffield and say, “William take care of my daughter who I named after you”? And who is Ann Ellis? Martha’s mother was Nancy Roebuck born in 1795, so this could be the same person. That means that Ann Baxter must be Ann Ellis born about 1822:

This could also explain the Sheffield/Liverpool connection.

I see I left an important detail from the Baxter 1861 Census. That is where everyone was born:

Everyone in that Census was born in Sheffield except for Ann Ellis who was born in Thorne.  I have that my ancestor Nancy Ellis was born in Thorne, so this makes sense. That is what I like about the Census. It shows a lot of family relationships and gives a lot of information in a little space.

William Baxter and Ann Ellis

I feel I have enough information to go on to make a case that William Baxter’s wife Ann was actually Ann Ellis. Here is the family in 1851 in Nether Hallam to the West of Sheffield:

William was listed as a saw smith.

More On Ann Roebuck Ellis

Here is Ann in 1871 back in Sheffield:

Ann is listed as a lodger with Elizabeth Roebuck. As Elizabeth is listed as widowed, she could be a sister-in-law. Elizabeth is listed as born in Sheffield and Ann in Thorne.

What I Have Learned So Far

Perhaps a chronology would help

  • April 1858 Maria Baxter born to William Nicholson and Martha Ellis in Sheffield
  • June 1860 Sarah Ann born to William Nicholson and Martha Ellis in Sheffield
  • August 1860 Maria Baxter Nicholson Baptized, Liverpool
  • 1861 Census William, Martha and Sarah Ann living in Sheffield
  • 1861 Maria Baxter Nicholson living with Uncle William Baxter, Aunt Ann Ellis Baxter and grandmother Ann (Nancy) Roebuck Ellis
  • So it is not clear whether William and Martha Nicholson were present at the baptism of their daughter Maria Baxter. I had assumed that they were.
  • Dec 1861 – Emma Nicholson born, probably in Liverpool.
  • Jan 19, 1862 – Emma Nicholson baptized at St Peter’s in Liverpool.
  • Jan 19, 1862 – Sarah Ann Nicholson baptized at St Peter’s  in Liverpool. Emma’s and Sarah’s address is given as Fontenoy Street, Liverpool.
  • March 1865 – Birth of Ann Eliza Nicholson presumed in Boote, Lancashire.
  • August 1865 – Baptism of Ann Eliza at St Peter’s, Liverpool
  • Feb 1869 – Birth of Agnes D Nicholson in Bootle
  • March 1869 – Baptism of Agnes D at St. Peter’s, Liverpool
  • Nov 1870 – Martha Nicholson travels from Liverpool to New York City with her four daughters: Sarah Ann, Emma, Eliza and Agnes. The girls are between the ages of  and 11.
  • 1871 – Martha’s mother Ann Roebuck Ellis now 76 years old is living with Elizabeth Roebuck in North Sheffield.

That seems to summarize about 13 eventful years for the Nicholson family.

A Few Loose Ends

I haven’t found William Nicholson’s shipping record or naturalization records. This may be Maria’s death record from 1866:

Though the family should have been in Bootle by then.

I found out some things about Ann Ellis. I could fill more blanks in with her or her siblings. Here are her siblings:

Summary and Conclusions

  • While I was filling in my brother’s maternal side ancestry for DNA testing, I came upon a few interesting records that indicated my Nicholson ancestors may have lived in Liverpool before moving from Sheffield to Philadelphia
  • I checked the records and they did live there. In fact, my great grandmother Ann Eliza and four of her sisters were baptized in Liverpool.
  • I also found my third great grandmother living in Liverpool with William and Ann Baxter in 1861. This Ann was probably Ann Ellis, Martha Ellis Nicholson’s older sister. For some reason Willliam and Martha Nicholson’s youngest daughter was living in the Baxter house also in 1861 while William and Martha were in Sheffield with their infant second daughter.
  • I left with some follow up work to fill in some of the blanks.
  • I didn’ know last week that I had something in common with the Beatles. Now I know that I do.



Figuring Out a Frazer Photo From Ballindoon, County Sligo

Recently I posted a photo at the Frazers of Roscommon, Sligo and Leitrim Facebook Page. Joanna who started the Page asked me if I could identify the people in the photo. That is a fair question, so I thought that I would give it a shot in the Blog. Also other may chime in. Here is the photo:

I got this photo when I visited Eileen McMaster Frazer in Ballindoon in County Sligo. She generously loaned it to me so I could make a copy.  It looks like the photo has been folded in the past and that someone scribbled on the face of George Frazer, the father. Here is what I have at my web page:

For some reason, these children are out of order.

The Two Girls in the Photo

I show above that there were only two daughters in this family and the rest were boys. That means that it should be easier to start with the girls. My assumption is that as the family had two girls and that there are two girls in the photo that these two girls are:

  • Violet Frances born 1872 and
  • Susan Jane born 1887

That tells us that Violet was about 15 years older than Susan. First, I need to get the Frazer children in chronological order.

Fixing My Frazer Ancestry Tree

Fixing trees is always good:

This is better, but I have no date for George Frazer. I suspect that George Russell Frazer died in 1875:

Perhaps George Russell was named after his uncle:

George William’s older sister Sidney or Sydney married John George Russell in 1869.

Here is a better list:

I’m just missing death dates for William and Susan. So far, this tells, me that out of the six children in the photo, I know that George Russell Frazer had passed away and that my great-grandfather was in the US. He arrived in the US in 1887.

Back to Violet Frances and Susan Jane Frazer

This is my top choice for Susan:

Joanna’s tree has Susan born 27 Oct 1886.  How old is Susan here? If I guess 12, then Violet would be 27. That would also date the photo at about 1899. But then there is a younger person with George and Margaret. I have that Susan was the youngest. If she is the youngest, then is that a grandchild with George and Margaret?

This appears to be a boy to me.

Violet Frances Frazer 1872-1934

I was told by a relative that this is Violet on her wedding day:

Violet married on 7 Jan 1901. That would mean that Violet was 28 in the above photo.

In the other photo, the person who I assume to be Violet is on the crease:

So I’ve gotten myself into a pickle.

Where Were the Frazer Children in 1899?

One guess is that the photo I’m looking at was taken in 1899. Where were all the children around that time? There was a Census in the US in 1900 and one in Ireland in 1901, so that might help. I know that my great-grandfather James Archibald Frazer was in the US at the time. Here is James in the 1899 Boston Directory:

William Frazer

William Frazer married Amanda Skoog in Boston in 1910:

He must have been living with my great-grandfather James then as James had a house at 35 Alaska Street in Boston. It looks like William and Richard made their way to Boston in 1896:

They planned to stay with their brother in Boston:

So that makes me think that neither William nor Richard were in the photo in Ballindoon.

Frazers in Ireland

So that leaves these potential children in the photo:

We know that Violet was in Ireland as she married there in January 1901. Next is Hubert.

Hubert Frazer 1878-1954

Hubert made his way to Boston in 1901. So he could be in the photo. It looks like William and Richard went to Ireland to bring him to Boston:

Both these ships left from Queenstown which is current Cobh, Ireland:

Which One is Hubert?

That leaves me with these two choices for Hubert:

Then that leads me to this photo:

I’m not sure who labelled this photo, but if they were right, it would appear that Hubert is in the upper right. Here is my version of the same photo:


My vote for Hubert is on the left in the photo of this Blog:

Because Hubert and George were close in age, I guess the the brother on the right was George:

If the photo was in 1899, then George would have been 20 and Hubert would have been 21. That seems possible to me.

John Edward Frazer 1882-1870

Here is where I run into a problem. If the next boy was John Edward and the photo was taken in 1899, then John Edward would have to be 17 years old. The boy on the left doesn’t look 17 to me.

According to the 1911 Census:

Edward is 21 so he would have been born about 1890. The 1911 Census further indicates that Edward is younger than Susan:

This is consistent with the 1901 Census:

That means that I need to adjust the birth date for John Edward. The findagrave.com website agrees with a later birth date:

That gives me a revised birth order:

My Current Guess

I have tried to identify these six children previously. This time I went into a little more depth in identifying them.

Hopefully, I came up with the same answer last time.

More on the Dating: 1897?

Now that I have identified John Edward, I would like to date the photo on him. My original guess for the photo was 1899 on how old I thought Susan Jane might be. Here is a chart using 1897 as a possibility:

John Edward looks fairly young. He seems sort of clingy. I’m not sure a 10 year old would be that way. That would put Susan at 10. She looks fairly tall, though girls can can tend to grow faster than boys. David is looking to me like a young 13. George and Hubert at 18 and 19 doesn’t look wrong. Violet at 25 could be right also. One temptation would be to say that everyone was dressed up for Violet’s wedding. However, that doesn’t seem to make sense given the look of  the age of the children.

More on David Frazer 1884-1953

Violet Frazer married James Fairbanks in January 1901. That means that David would have been about four months short of being 17 years old:

Also David is wearing the same style of boots tucked into his pants as in the earlier photo. According to this ship record, David made his way to Boston in November 1912. David is the second person on the list.

This record shows that David had previously been in Boston in July of that year.

A Frazer Chronology

With all that was going on with this family, it would be interesting to do a chronology. This may tell an interesting story. It appears that George moved to Ballindoon in 1866:

Charles Sproule was living in Lot 5a. His name is crossed out on the sheet and George Frazer’s name is added. In the right column titled Observations is 66 which I take to mean 1866. This was probably right around the time he married Margaret McMaster who was from the area and before my great-grandfather James Frazer was born. I was told that the previous person occupying the house could not afford to live there. The Immediate Lessor is listed as John Gethen.

George Frazer 1879-1960

For some reason I am having trouble finding some records for George Frazer in the Irish Census and for his marriage.  However, Frazer researcher Joanna has these records in her tree:

George helped out his Aunt Isabella Frazer at the Derrycashel farm:

George took over the Derrycashel farm in 1917. He had five children that were presumably born at that location.

David Frazer 1884-1953

I seem to be missing some information on David Frazer also. We have two photos of David. The second was taken around the time of the 1901 Census:

According to this record, David married in 1915 in Norwood:

Here is David’s petition for naturalization:

Here he says he arrived in the US in 1908. David’s petition was signed by his brother James and Robert McMaster:

I’m curious as to who this Robert McMaster is. Here is a Robert McMaster who is a Chef in Boston on 1910:

Here is Robert on one of my web pages:

Here is Dereentunny in Roscommon near the County Sligo border:

Ballindoon is to the NE of Lough Arrow. Another interesting thing about Robert is that he stated his intentions to be a citizen in the State of Michigan:

This next record shows that Robert went back to Ireland and traveled with some of his Johnston relatives in 1912:

Robert lists a John McMaster in Ireland that he visited. This was probably his brother John James McMaster born 1858.

Back to David Frazer After a McMaster Detour

David had a daughter named Eleanor Maude Frazer. One reference has her mother as Annie Gray which doesn’t seem right:

I believe that David death certificate also has Annie Gray as David’s mother, so there is some confusion. Eleanor’s mother should be Eleanor Taylor Frazer:

David is shown on the previous page of the 1920 Census. Here is a definitive record:

More on John Edward Frazer 1889-1970

John Edward was the little boy in the photo. He married Margaret Lillie McMaster in 1917 and had a daughter Lily Margaret Frazer in 1918 in Ballindoon. That same year, John Edward’s wife died. John Edward married Waitie Covell in New Hampshire in 1931. John Edward who usually wend by Edward died in Marlborough, Massachusetts in 1970.

Here is Edward in 1940:

Edward was a cook at a private school in 1940. I’m curiouis who Walter Stanley was. In 1935, he was living in Ballindoon. This was actually Walter Stanley Frazer, son of William Frazer and Amanda Skoog. According to the 1940 Census, Edward was naturalized.

At 5 foot 11 inches, Edward is no longer the little boy standing between his parents. Edward is living at 38 Batavia Street. That sounds familiar. I’m guessing this was Edward in the 1923 Directory:

Unfortunately, I can’t find Dover or Batavia in a current Google search. Here in 1926, Edward was in Roxbury:

There was also another Edward Frazer who was a fireman in East Boston at the time.

Apparently Batavia Street is now Symphony Road:

Apparently Dover Street is now East Berkeley Street:

However, there was an Edward Frazer who was a cook at Dover Street in the 1920 Directory. Edward’s petition says he showed up in the US in 1922. Here is the other cook Edward Frazer who was born in Rhode Island shown in the 1920 Census:

Forest Street in Roxbury would have been near where my great-grandfather James lived:

Here is more Naturalization information:

Edward is listed as a chef living at 26 Montrose Street, Boston in 1928. The affidavits were signed by Edward’s brother, my great-grandfather and Edward’s nephew George Frazer:

James’ son George Frazer was born in 1896, so he was actually a little less than three years older than his Uncle Edward. This shows that Edward had a close relationship with my great-grandfather’s family.

In fact, James lived at 26 Montrose Street in 1927, so Edward must have been living with him at the time.

I believe that was this house that I have a photo of:

This looks to be the same house today:

In the older photo there was a porch over the entranceway. Here is another view:

When Edward arrived in New York City from Ireland, he was 33 years old. Edward gives this for his nearest relative in Ireland:

He also knew that he was headed for Roxbury in Boston.

Edward appears to have a lot more money than the average traveler if the handwritten amount is right The story I heard was that my great-grandfather was sending money back to help get his brothers to the US. Interesting to note also that Edward intended to stay in the US for 10 years.

The Chronology

Here is what I have up to 1900:



The last entry was meant to be 1975. I have something in every decade except for the 1850’s. This would have been during the height of the potato famine. Margaret McMaster had these siblings born around that time:

Summary and Conclusions

  • They say a picture is worth 1,000 words, and I have proved that to be true in this blog two times over.
  • I feel as though I have been able to identify each person in the photo.
  • This lead me to identify David Frazer in the Frances Violet Frazer wedding photo.
  • I also updated some information on each of the children of George William Frazer and Margaret McMaster
  • I came up with a timeline of what was going on in Ireland and in the US.

Here is a color-coded timeline:

Addendum – William Goes Back to Ireland

This was an important event. On the 8th of February 1919, William and his family arrived in Liverpool on their way to Ballindoon with his wife Amanda and three children after sailing from Portland, Maine:

This brings up another point. I don’t have Elsie in my tree. She was born 30 Jun 1914 in Mansfield, Massachusetts:

The William Frazer story is quite compelling. William moved to the Boston area in 1896. After living in the US for 18 years, he decides to go back to Ireland with his now American family. In a sense, he went against the trend and against those staying in the US for economic improvement. He left his new friends and family in the US for his parents and family in Ireland and a simpler but more difficult economic situation.

Addendum #2 – Telling the Stories

  • George William Frazer and Margaret McMaster – They remained on the farm in Ballindoon. In 1901, they have David, Susan and John Edward at 16, 14 and 12 helping out on the farm. In 1911, George William is listed as 75 and Susan and Edward are with them listed as 23 and 21. Susan and Edward each married in 1918. Edward has a daughter born May 1918 but Edward’s wife dies less than a month after the birth of their daughter. In February 1919, George and Margaret’s second oldest son William returns to the farm in Ballindoon with his wife and young family. Edward’s infant daughter Lilly dies within days of the return of William Frazer and family. Edward leaves Ireland for Boston in 1922 two months after the death of his mother. George Frazer the father lives to an old age until 1928.
  • Violet Frances (1872) She married James Fairbanks in 1901. After marriage, she went to live on James’ mother’s farm in Drumvoney, County Sligo. I have that she had four children and died in County Sligo in 1934. Violet’s husband James died in 1912.
  • Hubert (1878) – He came to the US in 1901 shortly after his sister Violet married. He married Annie McKinnon in 1917. He had three boys and two girls and became a store owner in Squantum, Quincy, Massachusetts.
  • George (1879) – He moved in with his Aunt Isabella and worked his grandfather’s farm in Derrycashel, County Roscommon. He married Annie Craig in 1915 and had one girl and three boys and died in 1960.
  • David (1884) – He arrived in the US in 1908. He married Eleanor (Elsie) Taylor in 1915 and had a daughter born in 1919 in Boston. David’s wife died in 1927. He married Annie Gray in 1931 in Milton, MA and died in Milton in 1953. David was a cook in 1920 and also have that he was a grocery clerk, but I am missing some information about him.
  • Susan Jane (1887) – She married Edward Crawford in 1918. He was likely the son of Joshua and Kate Crawford from Derreenasoo, County Roscommon.  Edward was present at the death of his mother there in 1931. My notes say that they moved to Northern Ireland. Edward, also known as Stuart Edward died in Linaskea, Fermanaugh in 1963. Susan died there at the age of 85 in 1972.
  • John Edward (1889) – I mentioned some of Edward’s earlier life surrounded by tragedy above. After moving to the Boston area, Edward married Waitie Covell in 1931. Edward was a chef. He died in Marlborough, MA in 1970. I don’t have any record of surviving children of Susan Jane or John Edward.
  • I don’t mention the three older Frazer brothers directly as they are not in the photo. However, I have already mentioned James and William Frazer. The other brother Richard has a son who marries David’s daughter.

Where Did My Pilgrim White Ancestors Live?

I have already looked at some of the places where my Pilgrim Bradford ancestors lived. The last in my line of Bradfords was Hannah T Bradford who lived in Rochester, Massachusetts where I grew up.

My White Ancestors

I only have half as many White ancestors as my Bradford ancestors:

William White

William White had a bit of a sad start in Plymouth Colony. According to the Mayflower Families:

In 1651 Gov Bradford wrote: “mr. White and his two servants died soon after their landing. His wife married with Mr. Winslow. His 2 sons are married and Resolved hath 5 children; Peregrine 2, all living.”

I can only assume that William died in the harsh New England Winter. I descend from Resolved. Peregrine was the one who was born on the Mayflower. William’s wife Susanna married Edward Winslow in May of 1621, not long after William’s death in February. That means that Edward Winslow would have raised Susanna’s young boys.

Edward Winslow (1595-1655)

After Susanna married Edward Winslow, she had a child who died young, then three boys and a girl. Here is the Winslow Property:

I didn’t realize that there was an early burial place by the water. My understanding was that the Pilgrims lived on board the ship when they first arrived. I assume that William never lived in a dwelling in Plymouth. At any rate, Resolved and his brother Peregrine must have lived at the highest location in early Plymouth.

The Bradford property is where the brick building is now on the left. That means that the Winslow property was probably near or to the right of the white building in the current photo above. The white building in the photo above is now the 1749 Courthouse Museum.

Here is Edward Winslow:

Resolved White

Here is some information from Wikipedia:

This gives a good summary of some of the places that Resolved lived including Plymouth, Scituate, Marshfield, Salem and Barbados for a short time. I haven’t found anything easy about where Resolved lived specifically other than in his early Plymouth days.

Here is where his brother Peregrine lived in Marshfield:

Here is the Winslow Cemetery where Resolved may be buried:

I also highlighted the Winslow House. This is actually the Isaac Winslow House built around 1700. So this is where Resolved perhaps ended up.

Resolved also visited Barbados:

I wonder how long it took to sail to Barbados. Resolved was there in 1657 for the sale of 1/5 of a plantation there that was in the Vassal family. Resolved was married to Judith Vassal. This is interesting due to the fact that a plantation probably involved slaves and Resolved observed this. Perhaps he had a chance to remain in Barbados but did not. At the time Resolved visited Barbados, his children were between the age of about 1 and 15.

Here is the Parish of St Michael in Barbados where the Plantation was:

Here is where Resolved lived in Massachusetts:

Resolved must have had some prior connections with Salem as he married his second wife Abigail Lord there in 1674. I would assume that his wife was a Puritan rather than a Pilgrim (who were called Separatists). This brings up the point that the White family may have not been part of the Pilgrims from Leyden but may have joined the Mayflower in London.

Samuel White Born 1646

Samuel is someone I am interested in. From what I understand he was influential in the beginnings of the Town I grew up in which is Rochester, MA. Samuel was born in Scituate. According to the Scituate Historical Society:

William Vassall of Stepney, Middlesex, England, merchant, age 42, was a passenger on the ship Blessing which arrived in New England by July, 1635. A few of the other passengers were Thomas King, age 21, Jo: Stockbridge, age 27, Ann Stockbridge, age 21 and Sara Tynkler, age 15. Vassall was granted 150 acres on Belle House Neck by the Plymouth Colony Court in 1638 and was one of the founders of the second church (South Scituate); he died at Barbados in 1655. The Lothrop records note that he was the first person to join the Scituate church “in our new meeting house, Nov 28, 1636.” Vassall’s daughter Judith Vassall, age 16, was also a passenger on the Blessing. She married Resolved White and was one of the original members of the second church (South Scituate).

Second Church Scituate is in current day Norwell. Here is a map of the Second Church Cemetery in relation to Norwell, Scituate, Marshfield and the North River:

Here is an excerpt from History of Scituate, Massachusetts: From Its First Settlement to 1831:

If this is accurate, then the places mentioned are in proximity to the Stockbridge Mill Dam shown in red below:

Here is an older map from the 1850’s:

The reddish outline is current-day Norwell. The Yellow is Marshfield. My guess is that Resolved lived in this general area. That means of course, that Samuel, his son, also lived with him here at this time.

Samuel White: From Scituate to Sandwich

According to the Mayflower Families Book,

Samuel White was in Sandwich as early as 20 May 1667 when Maj. Josiah Winslow of Marshfield, half brother of Samuel’s father, deeded “for love and good will to my kinsman Samuel White now of Sandwich.”

There must be a transcription of this deed somewhere:

Here is my attempt at figuring out the first part:

Winslow Gov

Winslow Gov

To all Christian [people?] to whom these ? ? shall come Major Josiah Winslow of that Towne? Of Marshfield in the Collonne of New Plymouth in New England ? ? And know yee that the said Major Josiah Winslow out of his ? Good Affection Love and Good Will unto his Kinsman Samuel White Now of the Towne of Sandwich in the Jurisdiction of New Plymouth in New England aforesaid and for? ? good considerations, him hereunto? Moving? Hath given granted conveyed…. Enfeoffed and confirmed; and by these? ? ? doth? Give grant convaye in feoff and confirmed? Unto the said Samuel White and his heirs for ever all that ? and ? of Land by the hounored Court of Plymouth unto him Granted ?  by Rewards? Of the said Cout  ? ? June? the ninth 1664 and June the Seventh 1665 ?; and is ? of those lands; lying upon the Easterly syde of Narrawakett? River in the Township of Middleberry; between the old and New path that goeth from the wading lake? On the said River towards Lakenham; and is commonly called the Wagons ? ; the said land given as aforesaid is four or five acres? of Meaddow lying upon the said River and West adjoining unto the Said upland, so? ? found, not ? Granted to any other ?; and the ? is an hundred and fifty acres? Most on ? bounded by said River all the northerly ?, buy the old path on the Mortherly syde; by the New Path on the Southerly Syhde; and all the easterly side? By a Marsh? ? oak ? Marsh? ? the old path; and against the Land of George Vaughan being? The Nrothward Bounds; and all the ? ? ? ; by a Marshed? Walnutt? ? standing ? unto the New Path and all the ? and the above mentioned Lands, both upland and meddow; ? with the…

Well, at least I tried. I take it the land was near a river, a new path, and old path and George Vaughan’s land. The Mill River would be a wild guess for the River mentioned:

Josiah Winslow, put another way, was Samuel’s half Uncle and a nice guy to give his nephew land in Sandwich. Here is Josiah:

Any family resemblance? Josiah was about 18 years older than Samuel.

I’m not sure why, but it appears that Resolved and Peregrine signed the deed that gave Samuel White the land in Sandwich. Perhaps this was because Samuel was in Sandwich and the deed could have been signed in Plymouth or Marshfield?

I read something like Signed, sealed and delivered in the presence of Resolved White; Peregrine White. I find it fascinating to see a record of these two. One brother took the trip across the Atlantic as a 5 year old boy. The other boy was the first born of the Pilgrims in the New World.

It is not clear when Resolved moved to Marshfield. Resolved sold land in Scituate in 1662 and was elected surveyor of highways in Marshfield in 1668.

So we see that wherever Samuel White came from, he was living in Sandwich as of 1667 when he had just turned 21 years of age. Back to the Mayflower Silver Book:

He was still in Sandwich 8 June 1671 when he and his wife Rebecca deeded land to Benjamin Church, acknowledged 8 June 1677. In 1679 he was listed as one of the proprietors of Rochester.

This shows the importance of land records. There is no record of Samuel’s marriage to Rebecca, but this shows that Samuel likely married between 1662 and 1671. I assume that Samuel sold the land to become a proprietor of Rochester.

Here is an excerpt from the History ol Mattapoisett and Old Rochester:

That means that Samuel White was one of the first inhabitants and first Selectmen of the Town of Rochester.

In 1684, Samuel would have been about 38 years old.

Where Did Samuel White Live in Rochester?

Samuel drew a home lot at Mattapoisett as opposed to Sippican. However, some of those people never occupied their lots and people were allowed to swap or take other land. According to Mattapoisett and Old Rochester:

That may be as close as I get for now:

That turns out to be less than a mile from where I live.

Penelope White 1687-1738

According to the Mayflower Families, Penelope was born in Rochester. She married Peter Crapo in 1704. The Crapo family lived on the West side of Snipatuit Road. This is perhaps the same house that Peter lived in:

Penelope would have been about 17 years old when she married Peter. Tradition says that as a boy Peter was shipwrecked on the coast of Cape Cod in 1680. If that is true he could have been born about 1670 and been about 17 years older than Penelope – say twice her age at 34 when they married.

Here is a map from the 1850’s showing where some of the Crapo’s lived at that time:

Unfortunately, most of the Crapo properties are miss-spelled. After he was shipwrecked Peter or Pierre lived with a Francis Coombs of Middleborough. At the top of the map above there is a Coombs listed. I believe that this location was an inn or tavern. Perhaps Peter’s son, my ancestor, Francis was named for Francis Coombs. I have read that Peter Crapo got together with other land owners to create a connection between the Mattapoisett River and Snipatuit Pond so the alewives (herring) could spawn in Snipatuit pond. That would have been in the area shown as Randall above. I believe that the Randall house was once a Crapo property also.

My ancestor, Greenwood Hartley bought the Philip Crapo house at the bottom right of the map. Philip was the great-grandson of Penelope White.


  • My last White ancestor Penelope died about 282 years ago. That is a long time. However, she lived in the same Town that I grew up with. That speaks of a great amount of continuity. She probably lived on the West side of Snipatuit Road on the West side of Snipatuit Pond.
  • Penelope’s father Samuel White was one of the founders of Rochester. He moved to Rochester sometime around 1675. 345 years ago!
  • I descend from Governor Bradford on another line. I hadn’t thought as much about my connection to Governor Josiah Winslow. I don’t descend from Josiah, but he was the half brother of my ancestor Resolved White and was generous to his son Samuel White.  Part of the interest in descending from Josiah is that there is a painting of him and could give some indication of what Resolved looked like. Josiah was Governor of the Plymouth Colony during King Philip’s War. I’m sure that made life difficult for Josiah.
  • I perhaps feel less connected with Resolved White. He was born into some amount of privilege and also married into a wealthy family. He sold his holdings in Barbados. Whether this was from moral or personal reasons is not certain. He lived a long a prosperous life. I suppose I hadn’t thought of Resolved living in Salem which adds some interest to life. That, and his trip or trips to Barbados.
  • Unfortunately, little is known about William White. It is even uncertain as to whether he was born in England or Holland. Many trees have him from Holland, but things I have read lately lead me to believe that he may have been born in England.


My Distant Pilgrim Relative Gary

I was surprised to find out while pursuing my genealogy hobby that I was related to my friend Gary. We both descend from William White of the Mayflower. Gary goes all the way with the Whites. My White line drops off at Penelope White who was born in 1687:

Tracing Gary Back to William White

Here is Gary’s dad Donald who passed away in 2015:

A quick search for Donald gave me this tree:

That gets me quickly back to 1873.

However, I’ll make my own tree also.

Donald W White 1930-2015

Donald was born in Acushnet, but lived with his family nearby in New Bedford in 1940:

Donald’s father was listed on the previous page of the Census:

Raymond and family were at 2135 Acushnet Ave:

This is the address of Kentucky Fried Chicken today. Raymond had only completed 3rd grade. His occupation was dairyman.

Raymond White 1906-1978

Apologies to Donald, but I have a long way to get back to William White of the Mayflower. Here is Raymond’s birth record from 1906:

Raymond’s father was Walter and was listed as a farmer.

Here is Raymond’s stone at the Long Plain Cemetery in Acushnet:

Only 300 more years to go.

Walter Augustus White 1873-1956

Augustus was a popular family name. Walter died the year I was born. Walter was also born in Acushnet, but his father who was also a farmer was born in Fairhaven and his mother born in Freetown based on this birth record:

Here is Walter in the 1880 Census with the rest of his family:

Augustus White 1832-1917

Findagrave.com has a lot of information on Augustus:

Augustus White, son of Phineas and Betsey (Walker) White of Livermore Maine was born September 26, 1832, in the house where he has since resided on the Mill Road at the head of White’s Factory Road in this town.

Mr. White comes from Mayflower stock, his ancestor William being one of the passengers of that good ship. The line down is as follows: William WhiteResolved WhiteSamuel White, John, John, William WhiteWilliam WhitePhineas White and Augustus.

The only education Augustus received in his boyhood days was in the district school near his home, but he has been a diligent student all his life and has acquired useful knowledge from much reading and careful observation.

His chief occupation has been the tilling of the farm on which he was born and he now has one of the largest, most productive dairy farms in this country. Assisted by his sons, he makes milk for the New Bedford market, all of which they deliver. Mr. White has served the town 12 years as school committee and been several years surveyor of highways. He was one of the leading men in the erection of the Advent chapel in the Whelden neighborhood, 44 years ago and has been a deacon of the society and superintendent of the Sabbath school during those years. Mr. White has always been a man of industry and push and now at 75 years of age, is remarkably vigorous in body and mind.

He married June 7, 1869, Angeline M. White the daughter of Merchant and Melora A. White.

Now I’m getting somewhere with this excerpt from the History of Acushnet. Gary and I have the common ancestors of Samuel White which I would have suspected. That is where Gary’s family and my family went their separate ways:

My quick version, if I got it right, is that Gary and I are 9th cousins once removed:

Another Look at My Hartley Tree

The first time I didn’t notice Gary in my tree. Now I see that he is there:

Ancestry shows as 9th cousins:

Apparently we are more closely related than I realized through John Jenkins. Who knew?

That means that John Jenkins’ granddaughter Mercy married John White and had Thomas White who had Merchant White. Then there was another Merchant white who had Angeline White who married Augustus White. It gets confusing when White marries White. The interesting thing is the Jenkins family was from Barnstable on Cape Cod originally. Who know? Perhaps Gary and I are related other ways also.

Who Was John Jenkins 1609-1685?

John Jenkins bought land in Plymouth in 1640:

Here is some more I found out about John in the Great Migration Project:


Above are Mary Jenkins who I descend from and Thomas Jenkins who Gary descends from.

That’s quite a bit about John Jenkins.

Back to the White Tree

Here is where Mary Jenkins came in on Gary’s line:

Also Augustus White married his third cousin Angeline White.

John White Born About 1689

Here is an interesting item that surprised me about John White the son of John White. According to the Mayflower Families Book:

Son John is apparently an illegitimate child by Martha Doty (See Plymouth Co Ct Recs 1:205). This may explain why he is not named in John’s will even though he was alive and living in Rochester when the will was written.

However, there is a much more complicated lengthy discussion on Rootsweb not all of which I can easily follow:

I think the upshot of the above discussion is that the author believes that Martha Doty had a child John White out of wedlock but that the father was John White.

DNA Testing

Some Mayflower White descendants have been tested, so it may be possible to settle the issue through YDNA testing. YDNA tests the DNA from father to son to son. There is a Mayflower YDNA Project that has three Whites in the group. They have tested markers called STRs:

I didn’t show all the results. The first two testers have tested 67 STRs and the last person tested 37 STRs. One study reported that for the 67 STR test, one STR should change, on average, every 3.5 generations. So that means that for a common ancestor such as William White of the Mayflower, some changes would be expected. So if Gary were to have his YDNA tested and the STR results were consistent with other William White descendants, it should prove that John White of 1689 was the son of John White of 1669. It would be even easier to tell if Gary did not match the haplotype of Mayflower passenger William White.

Summary and Conclusions

  • I ran into a few surprises while looking at Gary’s Mayflower lineage and how he matches with my lineage
  • The first was that Gary and I are more closely related on the Jenkins Line. I looked into some information about John Jenkins who was born about 1609.
  • The second surprise was that there was some question about Gary’s Mayflower lineage on the White Line. That is because Gary’s ancestor Martha Dotey was brought up on charges of fornication. Martha confessed to the charge though apparently no father was named. This brings into question whether her first son John was the son of her later husband John White.
  • This issue could be cleared up if Gary took a YDNA test.



Where Did My William Bradford Ancestors Live?

As I have mentioned in a previous Blog, the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrims landing in Plymouth will soon be upon us. As I update this Blog it is now upon us. As a result, I’m struck that I’ve had ancestors living in Plymouth County where I live for the last 400 years. I have written a few Blogs on where my Bradford ancestors lived. My previous one was on Hannah T Bradford born 1838.

William Bradford Born Before December 1686

This William Bradford was the last William Bradford in my line leading down from Governor Bradford. His line of descent is from his great-grandfather Governor William Bradford to his grandfather Major William Bradford to his father William who married Rebecca Bartlett.


Here is William going back from Hannah Bradford:

Hannah was my 2nd great-grandmother. That makes William my 6th great-grandfather. I assume that William owned land and it is possible that I may be able to trace that land to a current location. According to my Mayflower Families book, William was probably born in Plymouth. He married in Plymouth and he died in Kingston. As William had three more William’s in a row to get back to Governor Bradford, the genealogy can be a little confusing.

One other way to identify these William’s is by their spouses. Unfortunately, I cut off the last wife who was Elizabeth Finney. I also cut off the wife of the William Bradford who was born in 1654. This was Rebecca Bartlett.

William’s Father Dies When William Is Young

Here is more of the story:

William was one of three children and he was the only boy. His father William died when William was only 1 or 2. None of the dates for the children are sure. Alice’s birth is from another book. William was born before December 1686 and Sarah’s birth year is based on her death record. The elder William died in a cart accident.

William Bradford: From Plymouth to Kingston

Here is William’s wife and children:

The first five children were born in Plymouth. That is up to my ancestor Josiah born in 1724. The last three children were born in 1726 or after. That would put William’s move to Kingston at about 1725. Or did the boundaries change? I note that Kingston was incorporated in 1726.

William First Mentioned in a Deed Dated 1687

When William was still a toddler, he was mentioned in a deed by his grandfather William Bradford (born 1624). According to the Mayflower Families Book:

On 23 April 1697 William Bradford in consideration of the natural love he bore for his grandchild William Bradford, only son of his son William Bradford deceased, gives to his grandson one parcel of upland on which his son had built his house “Given unto me from my father William Bradford Esqr”

So it seems this deed mentions four generations of William Bradford’s. This also indirectly mentions where William’s father built his house.

William’s Grandfather Major William Bradford Born 1624

It is usually best to go from the more recent to the less recent in genealogical research. However, in this case, Major William Bradford and his father Governor William Bradford are so famous, that a lot is known about them. For example, Major Bradford’s house is still around, so that will give us a foothold. I have this representation on my web site:

Here is a location on a current map:

Whose house is it?

I may have been wrong. As I look at the website, it appears that the house belonged to Major John Bradford son of Major William Bradford.

Looks like I have it wrong on my web site, so I’ll have to fix that. So it pays to look into these things. Major John Bradford was the brother of the William Bradford who died in a cart accident.

Looking for Where Governor Bradford Born 1589 Lived

I’ll start at the beginning. Here is where Governor Bradford lived in Plymouth:

Hey, someone put a furniture store on Governor Bradford’s property:

I have this rendition on my web site:

I’m not sure how accurate this rendition is, but it does appear to show the church next door. Records say that Bradford held Town meetings at his house. Here is another angle:

Burial hill is to the left in this photo. Governor Bradford lived where the brick building is. However, he also had farm land in present day Kingston. His wife was Alice (Carpenter) Southworth.

In a History of Kingston Massachusetts By Rev. Josiah Peckham, 1867:

For a time Gov. Bradford had his residence in Stoney Brook, near the dwelling of the late Francis Drew. The cellar of his house is still visible. His son, Deputy Gov. Bradford, lived, and died upon the same spot. A “High-Top Sweeting,” the last tree of the orchard, set out by the son, is still standing by the lane leading to Dea. Foster’s. Mr. Henry Colman speaks of it as “planted in 1669, and as bearing in 1838, thirty bushels of good fruit.” If this account of its age is true, it bids fair soon to enter upon its third century. Joseph Bradford, another son of the Governor, settled a little south-east of the Landing. 

Here is an old map of Kingston:

There is a Bradford shown to the North of Stony Brook. There is another S Bradford shown and highlighted to the South or SouthEast of Stony Brook. Today’s Stony Brook looks to be Halls Brook:

According to the Will of Governor Bradford dated 1657:

I have Desposed to John and Willam alreddy their  proportions of land which they are possesssed of;

Major William Bradford Born 1624

Here is an excerpt from an 1850 article on the Bradford Family:

This account appears to differ with the account above concerning where Deputy General William Bradford lived. Or perhaps he lived both places at different times. Here is a portion of the 1820-1830 map of Kingston South of the Jones River showing three Bradford locations:

Another Kingston Clue  in the Willett House

According to the Kingston Historical Commission:

Willett House update, 27 Wapping Road. Jack provided a historical overview, noting the house was likely built in the 1630s, perhaps in 1638, and describes it as having the best provenance of any house in town. Willett, who sold it to Governor William Bradford in the 1650s, came over on the second Mayflower voyage in 1629.

Based on further Commission notes, this house is in private ownership. This excerpt is from the Massachusetts Historical Commission:

The ownership history has been thoroughly researched and indicates the (house and?) land was sold to Governor William Bradford in 1653. It remained in the Bradford family when it was willed to his son, Major William Bradford, who built the “Bradford House” on Landing Road, and then to Samuel and Gershom Bradford. In 1747, the land was sold to Reverend William Rand and later to John Faunce, in whose family it remained for quite some time. From December 1936 to July 1937, a Historic American Buildings Survey team recorded the site and listed the owner as George Higgins. Shortly thereafter, a Mrs. Peabody owned the property and it was under her ownership that the house underwent a restoration by Strickland & Strickland in 1946. The current owner has not significantly altered the appearance of the house since she bought it and it appears very much as it did following the 1946 restoration.

Here is 27 Wapping Road, Kingston:

This is to the South of Jones River. I’m not sure if the previous reference to Stony Brook is accurate or not.

Here is a photo of the house:

The original house from the 1600’s is the one in the back and the ‘newer’ part is on the front dating from the 1700’s. Here is some more information from the Massachusetts Historical Commission:

The main block of the Willett House, in its current configuration, is a typical early 18th century saltbox. Town records indicating a land grant to Capt. Thomas Willett in 1639, including forty acres of “upland and meadow” and seven acres “on which to build his house,” have served as the basis for dating the rear ell. In The Story of the Thomas Willett House, Gordon Massingham of the Kingston Historical Commission assumed that the ell was built around 1640 and it apparently served as a model for a precise, although somewhat larger replica built at Plymoth Plantation in 1994. HABS field notes suggested a slightly later 1653 date, apparently based on town histories published in 1884 and 1920. Abbott Lowell Cummings visited the house in 1996 and, according to the owner, stated that the rear ell did show evidence of 17th century construction (based in part on sheathing exposed at the time) and that the saltbox was probably built around 1700.

It helps to have famous ancestors who have been well-researched. On the 1820-1830 Kingston Map, the house appears to be labelled as belonging to the Widow Faunce:

Chronology for the Williett House

Governor Bradford buys the Williett house in 1653. It is not clear to me if he lives in it or not. The Massachusetts HIstorical Commission [MHC] says it was willed to his son Major William Bradford. However, Governor Bradford died in 1657. His Will says he already gave land to his two sons prior to the Will. My guess is that if the Governor ever lived in the house it was for a very brief time or only to visit his son. According to the MHC, “It remained in the Bradford family when it was willed to his son, Major William Bradford, who built the “Bradford House” on Landing Road, and then to Samuel and Gershom Bradford. In 1747, the land was sold to Reverend William Rand…” That means tha the Willett house was a Bradford house between 1653 and 1747. 

The Samuel mentioned above, born about 1667, was the son of Major Bradford. Gershom, born 1691 was Samuel’s son. This Gershom was probably the same Gershom who in 1741 was appointed guardian of my ancestor Josiah Bradford (born about 1724) after Josiah’s father William Bradford died in a carting accident. That means that Josiah possibly lived at this location also when he was young.

The Bradford House on Landing Road

Am I going in circles? Above it says that the Willett House was willed to Major William Bradford who built the Bradford House on Landing Road. Wasn’t this the house that was listed as the Major John Bradford Homestead above? Major William Bradford died in 1687. The John Bradford house was built when?

According to Wikipedia:

The Bradford House, also known as the Major John Bradford Homestead, is a historic house at 50 Landing Road in Kingston, Massachusetts. The Jones River Village Historical Society owns the house, and operates it as a historic house museum. The oldest portion of this 2-1/2 story wood frame house was built c. 1714; this was the western portion of the house, including what is now the central chimney. Documentary evidence suggests the building was expanded to its present width c. 1750.

Apparently there is some confusion. So if Major William Bradford died in 1687, he couldn’t have built a house in 1714, unless there was a different house in this area that he built. According to a Major John Bradford Biography at the Jones River Village Historical Society web site:

Maj. Bradford’s home in Kingston, built in 1675, is still standing and open to the public today. According to tradition, the Indians attempted to burn John’s house during King Philip’s War. The Major discovered the fire. He spied an Indian on Abrams Hill waving a blanket and shouting to his fellows, and shot him. But on approach, he could not find the body. After the war, the Indian met Bradford and showed him the scars of his wound.

Based on this earlier date of construction, the house would have been built when John Bradford was 22 years old.

Here is another reference from a 1920 Biography on Governor William Bradford by Albert Hale Plumb that further confuses the issue:

Based on what I have learned so far, I am a little skeptical of the above Biography.

Some History of Kingston

According to Wikipedia:

Originally part of Plymouth, Kingston was first settled by Europeans shortly after the landing of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock in 1620. It was settled once more in 1635.[2] During 1675, several bloody battles during King Philip’s War are believed to have occurred within Kingston’s borders and the residence of Governor Bradford, which is now part of Kingston, was raided by Wampanoag warriors.

In 1685, the area was placed within the boundaries of Plymouth County and for a brief time, between 1686 and 1689, the borders of Kingston were within the Dominion of New England.

Kingston was first established as Plymouth’s northern precinct in 1717 upon the creation of First Parish Kingston, now a Unitarian Universalist church in the town’s center.[2] Kingston was incorporated as a distinct town on June 16, 1726, following a tax dispute between the residents of north and south Plymouth, when the parish was known as the upper class portion of Plymouth.

I would question that the residence of Governor Bradford was raided in 1675 as Governor Bradford died in 1657. If this is referring to Lieutenant Governor William Bradford, this would make more sense.

William Bradford Born Before 1654

According to the Mayflower Families he was probably born in Plymouth. But recall the boundaries were different then. This was the William who married Rebecca Bartlett and died when a cart he was driving overturned and killed him. I am hoping there will be some information on him that will clear things up. Here is a representation of my four William Bradford’s who lived in Plymouth as it is easy to get these William’s mixed up:

As the result of William’s untimely death in 1687, there are some records.

John Bradford was the administrator of William’s estate. I assume that this was the Major John Bradford who had the house I showed earlier in the Blog.

John’s job was to see what assets William had and pay off outstanding debts. Then he would see if anything was left over.

If I could read the above, it might give a clue to the kind of work William did. My assumption is that William had some sort of carting business as he died in a carting accident.

Here are the people that William owed:

According to to the book, “William Bradford of the Mayflower”:

On 23 April 1687 William Bradford in consideration of the natural love he bore for his grandchild William Bradford, only son of his son William Bradford deceased, gives to his grandson one parcel of upland on which his son had built his house “Given unto me from my father William Bradford Esqr.” Before acknowledging the deed on 4 Sept 1696, William added a paragraph saying that when his grandson William reached the age of 21, he “shall enjoy the lands without Interruption.” On 29 Oct. 1709 John Bradford, Samuel Bradford, Israel Bradford, Ephraim Bradford, David Bradford, and Hezekiah Bradford all of Plymouth County gave their right in a cedar swamp to their kinsman William Bradford, son of their brother William Bradford deceased. This deed was not acknowledged until 26 Marcy 1747.

What I gather from the above is that the carting William lived in a house that he built on land of his father Major William Bradford. This land was given to the Major by Governor Bradford. My guess is that the Major intended the carting William’s son William to be able to continue to live in the house that his father built. However, it does not seem that the younger William would own the land that the house was on.

From the book, “The Descendants of Elder William Brewster”:

The children of William and Rebecca (Bartlett) Bradford were remembered in the will of [William’s uncle] John Richards of Boston dated 1 April 1694 and proved on 10 May 1694 that mentioned that “the children of William Bradford Fr. of Plymouth were to receive the share fo their grandfather Major William Bradford, which was to be equally divided between them.” The children’s names were not mentioned.

The three children of William Bradford Jr., late of Plymouth, deceased, namely, William, Alice, and Sarah, made choice of their “uncle” Mr. Joseph Bartlett and Mr. Nathaniel Warren to be their guardians on 18 December 1700. Each child would have been over 14 years of age to be allowed to choose their guardian. A bond in the amount of 100 pounds was posted by the guardians “to ye orphaned Children.”

I wonder who Joseph Bartlett and Nathaniel Warren are? Rebecca Bartlett Bradford had an Uncle Joseph Bartlett (1639-1711). This Joseph also had a son Joseph (1665-1703). Nathaniel Warren seems even more obscure. Rebecca’s great-grandfather was Richard Warren. The titles Mr. are important. At the time, Mr. would have indicated a person of status and wealth.

Here is a helpful article from Illinois.edu from the Plymouth Colony Archive Project:

D. Guardianship

Guardian agreements are another type of agreement that I will only briefly mention here. The Court Records demonstrate that by 1660 guardian agreements were more common in the records than service and apprentice agreements. No recorded laws governed these agreements. Guardian agreements were written in a contract form similar to that of a servant’s indenture. Often a child would “pick” one or two adults to serve as their guardian until they were adults. A typical guardian agreement reads as follow: “Att this Court, Hannah Hull made choise of Joseph Holley and Nathaniel Fitsrandall to be her guardians, which was approved by the Court” (PCR 5: 52). In this case it is uncertain as to whether or not this childððs parents are deceased. However, other agreements specifically mention that the child’s father or parents were dead (PCR 5: 124). In some instances guardian agreements explicitly stated what goods the chosen guardian was to provide for the child while others asked that the guardians manage the estates inherited by their new wards (PCR 4:39).

The Oxford English Dictionary defines a guardian as “one who has or is by law entitled to the custody of the person or property (or both) of an infant, idiot, or other person legally incapable of managing his own affairs” (Electronic Text Center: UVA). The Plymouth Court Records indicate that this was how Plymouth residents defined guardians. Guardian agreements thus became a type of social welfare for orphaned children or children who can from dysfunctional parents. We may never know the manner in which guardians dealt with their wards. Did the guardian treat them like their own children, or did they treat their wards like servants? Most likely, the treatment of wards was highly varied. One record from 1659 involved a complaint made against John Williams, of Scittuate, for the “hard vsage of a daughter of John Barker, deceased” (PCR 3:160). The child was removed from William’s house and given to Thomas Bird until the next Court session could look into the case further. In the meantime, Williams was required to pay a fine. The final sentence of the record was particularly intriguing as it revealed a kin relationship between Williams and the daughter of the deceased John Barker. The record stated that “the said Thomas Bird is to appeer att the next Court to giue in what testimony hee can produce to cleare vp the case betwixt the said John Williams and his kinswoman, the said gerle” (ibid.). Here we see that Williams was probably the guardian of Barker’s daughter, and yet he had mistreated her and used her like a servant.

This record concerning the treatment of a ward is on the one extreme. In other cases a ward may have been treated like the guardian’s child. A future project might entail looking at the wills of men whom we know were chosen as guardians. Are the children they were assigned to look after listed in their wills? Are they listed as servants? These are just a few questions which might help us to understand the social roles of both the guardian and the child.

Apprentice, servant, and ward all entered into a common law contract with a master or guardian. These indenture agreements were viewed as unbreakable contracts and were enforced by the Plymouth Court. Any changes in indenture agreements — from the trade of a servant and the withholding of food or clothing to the misdemeanors of a servant — were brought before the Court. The next several sections will explore the manner with which change and divergence in indenture agreements was dealt.

It appears that the children would live with the guardians and would be treated along the range between servant to child. This doesn’t surprise me, as I believe that natural children were aslo treated along the same spectrum between child and servant.

From “William Bradford of the Mayflower”:

John Richards of Boston, merchant, in his will dated 1 April, proved 10 May 1694, named, among others, the children of his late sister Alice the wife of Major William Bradford of Plymouth; Thomas Bradford of Connecticut; Mercy the wife of mr. Steel of Hartford, [Conn.]; Alice the wife of Major James Fritch of Norwich, [Conn.]; Hannah the wife of Joshua Ribpley of Norwich; Melatiah the wife of John Steel of Norwich; the children of Willima Bradford Fr. of Plymouth to receive the share of the grandfather Major William Bradford to be equally divided among the; John Bradford; Samuel Bradford; Mary the wife of William Hunt of Wymouth; Sarah the wife of Mr. Baker of Duxbury; and Elizabethe Adams the daughter of Alice the wife of the late Rev. William Adams of Dedham.

John Richards was Major William Bradford’s brother-in-law.

Two Generations of Bradford Guardianship

The last William Bradford in my line born before 18 December 1686 chose, along with his two sisters to be under the guardianship of “their uncle Mr. Joseph Bartlett and Mr. Nathaniel Warren”. This William died 9 March 1729/30. According to “William Bradford of the Mayflower”,  “On 29 Nov 1736 George Partridge of Duxborough was appointed guardian of Sarah and Jerusha Bradford, over 14, and of Mercy and Josiah, under 14. On 21 May 1741 Gershom Bradford was appointed guardian of Josiah”. Josiah who was my ancestor was born possibly 1724.

Who Was George Partridge?

My assumption is that Josiah went to live with George Partridge in what I assume would be today’s Duxbury between 1736 and 1741. According to a 1915 Partridge genealogy:

Perhaps Josiah didn’t care for being restrained and was able to choose Gershom Bradford as his guardian as of 1741.

Summary and Conclusions

  • For the most part, I did not get very specific with the location of various Bradford ancestors
  • A specific location is known where Governor Bradford’s first dwelling house was in Downtown Plymouth.
  • I also guessed as to where Josiah Bradford lived when he was under the guardianship of Gershom Bradford in Duxbury.
  • In general, for the time period that I looked at, my Bradford ancestors lived to the North of Plmouth mostly in what is now Kingston.
  • The study of where ancestors lived and the lands they owned goes beyond the basic birth, marriage and death records and can be complicated. On the other hand these land records are sometimes better recorded than other records. When people moved, it was often for a reason and adds interest to the family history.