Updated: 5 May 2015
"That I Robert Sanderson the sonne of Saundersonne of Higham doe put myselfe apprentize until William Rawlins Citizen & Goldsmith of London for the terme of nyne yeares."
who he wasn't
Many ancestry trees and other internet sites claim that Robert was the son of Edward Saunderson and Isabella Shiercliffe of Sheffield, Yorkshire, England. This is not correct.
london clues"three pieces are known from that period - an unlocated salver and two communion cups and patens. This form of communion cup with its flared body and large trumpet foot follows the chalice-like form revived by William Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury during the 1630s. This form along with the use of the "IHS" on this cup was exactly the kind of vaguely Roman Catholic symbolism that infuriated the English Puritans and provoked a deep suspicion of the actual religious beliefs of King Charles I and Archbishop Laud. Probably having converted to Puritanism at an early age, Sanderson's dissatisfaction with having to make such forms may explain his decision to leave for Puritan New England. A number of American silver authorities had questioned if the London and Boston John Sanderson were the same man; however, tests confirmed that the the marks on his London and Boston pieces were struck with the same die."
Robert was apprenticed in 1623, he finished in 1632 and was made a Freeman of the Guild of Goldsmiths. In 1634 William Rawlins, his old master, apprentice his own son William Jr. to Robert Saunderson. The apprenticeship would have been for nine years, however the apprenticeship was transferred to another Goldsmith, George Dixon, presumably when Robert was preparing to immigrate to New England.
In 1642 William Rawlins Jr. completed his apprenticeship.(www.londonroll.org) William Rawlins Sr. lived and presumably worked, on Sherborne Lane in the parish of St. Mary Woolnoth. He worked as a goldsmith from 1607 until his death 1637. The baptisms of his children are recorded in the St. Mary Woolnoth parish records.
In 1640 and 1651 men named Saunderson from a small village called Pilton were apprenticed to Goldsmiths in London. Pilton is only twelve miles from Higham, believed by some to be the origin of Robert Sanderson. Are they related, cousins maybe?
marriage and children What does a master goldsmith need? A wife of course. I don't think that men were able to marry during their apprenticeship so Robert would most likely have married in 1632 after he finished and established his own business. In the parish records of St. Mary Abchurch are found the baptismal records of Robert and Lydia Saunderson. On 26 Feb 1633 Robert was baptized and his sister Lydia on 21 Jan 1635. In the book, The Inhabitants of London 1638, a Mr. Sanderson lives in the parish of St. Mary Abchurch. This sounds like our family.
children of robert sanderson
Robert Saunderson bp. 26 Feb 1633 St. Mary Abchurch, London d. young
Lydia Saunderson bp. 21 Jan 1635 St. Mary Abchurch, London, m. 13 Dec. 1654 Thomas Jones of Boston, d. unknown, her son Tom Jones Jr. named in her father's will
Mary Sanderson b. 29 Oct 1639 Hampton, NH.
John Sanderson b. unknown, d. 18 Sep 1658 of a fever. His brother Joseph was also sick but he recovered. John was unmarried and was an apprentice at the time of his death.
Abigail Sanderson birth not recorded. Elizabeth third wife of Robert agreed to take care of Abigail who could not care for herself.
Mary Cross daughter of Mary Cross
Married James Penniman, their children were named in Robert Sanderson's will.
Family Memorials: Genealogies of the Families and Descendants of the Early Settlers of Watertown, Massachusetts, Including Waltham and Weston: to which is Appended the Early History of the Town, Volume 1, Henry Bond
History of the Town of Hampton, New Hampshire: From Its Settlement ..., Volume 2, Joseph Dow
Studies on John Hull, the Mint and the Economics of Massachusetts Coinage by Louis Jordan
The Transcript of the Registers of the United Parishes of S. Mary Woolnoth ...By London(England). St. Mary Wollnoth with St. Mary Woolchurch (Parish), Jame Mark Saurin Brooke, Arthur Washington, Cornelius Hammen.
The Sanderson Family Genealogy Facebook Page
Greaves, Beverly Bahr, "William Sanderson and His Descendants 1641-1694" self published manuscript from 1989, found on Familysearch.org