Thursday, January 26, 2012

Richard Currier of Salisbury, Massachusetts

Today I was reading  a book about the transition from Elizabeth I to James I of England.  The book was addressing the attitude of the English towards the Scottish people. There was a quote which came from that period that stated that in 1603 there were only about 50-60 Scottish people in all of London. The reason I am writing about this  has to do with the parents of Richard Currier of Salisbury, Massachusetts.  A search of ancestry.com has Richard born in Strawberry Bank, Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Scotland.  A quick search of the maps reveals no such place, but more than that it just doesn't make any sense that he would be from Scotland.

source: apple time machine
Time Traveling Parents. An even bigger whopper is attached to his wife Ann.  In over 30 ancestry.com trees her parents are listed and Howard Arthur Turner b. 1919 d. 1969 and his wife Jennie Elizabeth Payne b. 1907 d. 1997.  They must have been time travelers! Ancestry.com is a great tool however, you still need to do your own research to confirm your findings, there is a lot of what I call "Junky Genealogy" out there. 

St. Thomas Salisbury by Paul Gillett,, creative commons
License 
English Origins. So who were Richard and Ann Currier. It is possible that Richard was originally from Salisbury, Wiltshire, England.  Likely candidates for his parents are Thomas and Martha Osborne Currier. Thomas and Martha were married on 14 January 1611 at St. Thomas Church in Salisbury.  Their son Richard was baptized on 3 March 1616.  Richard, when he was about 47 swore in court that he had been servant to Mr. Francis Dove.  Francis was a leading citizen in Salisbury, England, he was twice Mayor of that town.  He married Alice Batt, the widow of Peter Thacher, Vicar of St. Edmund's in Salisbury.  She was also the sister of Christoper Batt, and her son the Puritan Rev. Thomas Thacher, was a minister in Weymouth, Mass. Francis and Alice came to the Massachusetts Bay Colony, but returned to England, where he died in 1666, he is buried in Salisbury, England.  Mr. Christoper Batt was one of the founders of Salisbury, Mass. Taken all together, it makes sense, but not definitively proven. 

Mystery Wife. Ann, the wife of Richard is more elusive.  Her maiden name is sometimes given as Turner or Brown.  She and Richard married prior to 1643 in Salisbury, Mass. She, like most women of that time, appears very little in the town records, and not much can be said about her. 

Coming to America. It is not known when or on what ship Richard traveled to the Colony.  His name first appears on the list of proprietors of the newly formed town of Salisbury. On the first plat map of Salisbury, Richard Currier's town land is on the ring road, next to the Meetinghouse. Abraham Morrill is next to him. He received land in 41 and 42.  Richard took the "Oath of Fidelity" in front of Lt. Pike in 1646. In 1648 he sold his land in Salisbury to Abraham Morrill and moved across the Powow River to the new town of Amesbury.  
first settlers memorial stone and plaque
Richard's name began to appear more frequently in town records at this time.  He played a much bigger role in the administration of the town of Amesbury.  He was town clerk, selectman, Prudential Man at various times.  He and Thomas Macy owned and operated a sawmill, and he bought and sold a  good bit of land. 

RIP
Ann died sometime before 20 Oct 1676, when Richard married for a second time to the twice widowed Joanna Pinder.  She had been wife to Valentine Rowell and William Sargent. Richard and Joanna spent their last years in the home of her son Phillip Rowell. Richard died on 22 Feb 1686/7 and Joanna died in 1690, having outlived yet another husband. Richard is said to have fallen through thin ice on the mill pond and drowned, he was aged about 70.


Children of Richard and Ann
Ann gave birth to only two children, or at least only two who survived to adulthood: 
Hannah b. July 8, 1643
Thomas b. March 8, 1646


Hannah Currier married Samuel  Foote in 1659.  They lived in Amesbury.  Samuel was killed by Indians on July 7, 1690, Phillip Rowell was also killed that day.

Thomas Currier married in 1668 to Mary Osgood, daughter of William and Elizabeth Osgood of Salisbury.  He too was very active in the affairs of Amesbury.  He was town clerk, after his father, for 38 years, selectman, deacon in the church, he also operated the sawmill.  He and Mary had 12 children.  He died in 1712 at the age of 66.


Sources:
Harvey Lear Currier, Genealogy of Richard Currier of Salisbury and Amesbury, MA 1616-1686/7 and Many of His Descendants
Hoyt, Old Families of Salisbury and Amesbury
Robert Charles Anderson, Great Migration Series
ancestry.com
Records and Files of the Quarterly Court of Essex County