Tuesday, April 28, 2020

John Smith and Deborah Parkhurst: Great Migration Immigrants to Watertown, Hampton and Martha's Vineyard


Apologies to all the John Smith's in the world, but dang, this is a hard name to research, it's just too common. The English origins of John Smith, who married Deborah Parkhurst are uncertain but noted Great Migration genealogist Robert Charles Anderson wrote an article in 1985 laying out his research and conclusion and difficult to trace without a serious clue. So, here is what I know about John Smith.

The Norcross Connection

On 1 December 1640 the General Court of Massachusetts handed down an order in a case involving one John Smith Jr. and 'his father' Jeremy Norcross. It is clear from their surnames that Norcross must be the step-father and not the biological father of John. Anderson believes that this John Smith is the man who received land in Watertown in 1636, 1637, and 1638. His grants were small indicating that he was single. 

On 14 September 1611 at St. Luke, Chelsea, Middlesex, Jeremy Norcross married Audrie Smithe, widow. They had children baptized at All Hallows, Bread Street, London. This couple and their children immigrated to Massachusetts and lived in Watertown. Anderson believes that she is the mother of immigrant John Smith. If so, he is birth is before the 1611 marriage and would fit with him being a young man in his twenties during the early Watertown grants. If true, then Smith was likely born in London, but his parental ancestry remains unknown as does his mother's maiden name.

Hampton

In 1642 Watertown audited all the grant lands to ascertain who remained in town and held their original land. John Smith Jr. is not on the list. He had removed to Hampton, New Hampshire. A list of first-comers, includes a Goodman Smith how arrived in the second summer (1639). He and his wife, Goodwife Smith, were assigned seats in the meetinghouse in 1650. Sadly, no first names were recorded. 

Goody Smith was Deborah Parkhurst, daughter of George and Phebe Leete Parkhurst of Watertown. Her mother died in Watertown in about 1644 and her father returned to England in 1655. 

Martha's Vineyard

In 1653 a John Smith is found in the records of Edgartown on Martha's Vineyard. He appears in the records for doing various civic duties such as Magistrate Assistant and for land grants. In 1659 he became one of the 10 associate proprietors of Nantucket. In 1662 he was part of the train band for Martha's Vineyard. This would indicate that he was not yet above 60 years old, when most men were relieved of duty. He is last recorded in Martha's Vineyard in 1664. 

Nantucket

In 1670, John Smith, of sound body and mind, wrote his will on the island of Nantucket. He says he was in perfect health. In his will he names his wife Deborah and children Phillip, John, Samuel, Deborah and Abigail. John and Samuel split the Nantucket property and Phillip got Martha's Vineyard.

It is not know when John died, but his son John sold the Nantucket land in 1674 and moved to Hampton, New Hampshire. So his father was dead prior to 1674. His mother may have died about 1686 when Phillip sold the family homestead to his brother Samuel. 

Quakers

Many of the early settlers of Nantucket were Quakers and quiet a few folk left Hampton when they were being persecuted. I wonder if John was a Quaker? 

Deborah Smith Batchelder

I descend from daughter Deborah. She was born about 1640, probably in Hampton. She married Nathaniel Batchelder, grandson of the Reverend Stephen Batchelder. She died quite young in 1676 in Hampton. 



Sources:

[1]The American Genealogist. New Haven, CT: D. L. Jacobus, 1937-. (Online database. AmericanAncestors.org. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009 - .)

https://www.americanancestors.org/DB283/i/12790/23/0


[2]http://history.vineyard.net/jsmith.htm (Early settlers of Edgartown - online)

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Nathaniel Batchelder and Hester (Ester) Mercer of Southampton, England Parents of PGM Immigrant Nathaniel Jr.

Hooray! My first, very first, ancestor who is not Irish or English! I'm exited to find I have a tiny vein of French blood running through my 99% Anglo ancestry. So here it is.

The Batchelders

I am descended through two children of the Reverend Stephen Batchelder. Once through his daughter Ann, who married an Unknown Sanborn. Their son, immigrated to New England with his Grandfather. But, I am also descended through Stephen's son Nathaniel. Nathaniel Junior also immigrated with gramps, leaving behind his parents, Nathaniel and Hester Mercer. Hester is the French Connection. 

The Mercers

Jan Mercier was born about 1555 in Tournai/Tournay, Normandy, France. On the 18th of October, 1579 he married Jane LeClerc a native of Valciennes, in Southampton, England at St. Julien's also known as God's House. [1] Jan was a merchant and seems to have been quite successful. It is believed that he fled France during the persecution of the Hugenots in France. Southampton had a large French population, both from the continent and the Island of Guernsey. 

St. Julien's or God's House


In 1587, Jan is mentioned in the Court Leet of Southampton. He was presented in court as a 'stranger' and 'great dealer'. His business, it appears, was so successful, that he was hindering the business of the local burgess. He was fined for his offense. [2] In 1593, Jan is again in trouble for trading. His entry is found in the book of Examinations and Depositions. Brought before the Mayor, he was asked to explain two bundles of cloth in his possession and if they had come to him via The Saint Malo League. The case also involved 5 casks of Olde Sacke. The outcome is unknown.[3]

Children

Jan and Jeanne had a lot of children. At least eleven that I counted. On 23 May 1591, Jeanne gave birth to a girl they named Ester. She must have died as on 1 August 1602 a second daughter named Ester was baptized.  They also had two sons, named Phillip.

Paul                                   wrote his will in 1661, named in Daniels's will
Jeanne bp.     3 June 1581 named Priaulx in Daniel's will
Marie bp.      2 Sept. 1582 named in brother Daniel's will Sister Priaulx
Elizabeth bp. 9 June 1586 named Elizabeth Blanchard in Paul's will, sister Blanchard
Judith bp.    30 May 1587 named Judith Johnson and Daniels will
Pierre bp.     29 Aug 1588 named Peter in Daniel's will
Phillip bp.    14 Dec 1589  died young
Ester bp.      23 May 1591 died young
Phillip bp.   3 March 1593
Ann bp.          2 July 1600  named sister Stroud in Daniel's will
Daniel bp.    24 June 1601 deceased in Paul's 1661 will dated 1650
Ester bp.     1 Aug 1602 deceased, children Anna, Nathaniel, Francis and Benjamin named/Nathaniel   name in Daniel's will

Francis    no record            named in Paul's will - my brother, named in Daniel's will
William   no record            named in Paul's will - my brother

Most of this information comes from the will of Paul and Francis Mercer. It would seem that Paul was quite wealthy at his death and left a significant bequest to most of his family members.

Death of Jan and Jane/Jeanne Le Clercq Mercer

Jane died on 17 January 1621
Jan died on 3 January 1626
Their death and burials are recorded in the records of the Huguenot church in Southampton where they married and baptized their children. I think it is safe to assume they died in Southampton.[6]


Nathaniel Batchelder

Nathaniel and Hestor's marriage record has not been found. They had four or five children before her death along with those named in their uncle's wills, there is a Stephen Batchelder who is presumed to be the son of Nathaniel. Nathaniel Jr. was born about 1630. Hester died some time before 1645. Nathaniel was remarried and his widow Marjorie was made excutrix of his estate. 

Nathaniel Batchelder Jr.

Nathaniel traveled to New Hampshire at some point to join his grandfather and Sanborn cousins, children of his father's sister Ann. He is first found in the records in a deed dated 1647. It is likely that he came after his father's 1645 death. 


Sources:

[1] David Carnagie Agnew, Protestant Exiles from France: Chiefly in the Reign of Charles XVI, (self-published, 1886)

[2] Hearnshaw, F. J. C. (Fossey John Cobb), et al.. Court Leet Records, V. 1, A. D. 1550-. Southampton: H. M. Gilbert & son, 1905.

[3] Southampton (England), Elinor Rachel Aubrey, and Gertrude H Hamilton. Books of Examinations And Depositions, 1570-1594. Southampton: Cox & Sharland, 1914.

[4]5Ester Mercer's Birth: "England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975", database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J9SK-9G3 : 21 March 2020), Esther Mercier, 1602.

[5]The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1847-. (Online database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2001-2018.)
https://www.americanancestors.org/DB202/i/11607/514/0
[6] The National Archives of the UK; Kew, Surrey, England; General Register Office: Registers of Births, Marriages and Deaths surrendered to the Non-parochial Registers Commissions of 1837 and 1857; Class Number: RG 4; Piece Number: 4600

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

John Pike and Dorothy Daye of Landford, Wiltshire, England: 1635 Immigrant to New England

Landford, Wiltshire, England creative commons license

english origins


John Pike, 1635 immigrant to New England was recorded on the passenger list for the James on 5 April 1635, as a laborer of Langford, Wiltshire, England. There's not much in Landford, the parish church was built in 1858, the Landford Manor house dates from the 17th century, after John had sailed away. Landford is about 10 miles south of the large town of Salisbury. John's ancestry is not known.

John of Landford married Dorothy Daye of Boscombe, Wiltshire on 17 January 1612/13 in a neighboring parish, Whiteparish, about 3 miles away. The baptisms for two of his children are recorded at Landford, whose parish records from this time no longer exist; Israel in 1623 and their second son John in 1628. The remainder of the children are presumed to have been baptised there as well. 

Dorothy Day, b. about 1592, was the daughter of Thomas and Joan (Morris) Day of Boscombe, Wiltshire. Boscombe is to the north of Salisbury, about 18 miles from Landford. Thomas and Joan were married in Whiteparish on 12 June 1589. It is suggested that there might be a Morris connection to that place.



I found a reference to a court case which involved Thomas Day of Boscombe in 1602, which seems to cement this as his place of residence. 

Thomas wrote his will in June of 1631. He names his daughter, Dorothy Pike and her husband John. Thomas leaves her and her children 2 shillings apiece. His unmarried daughters get a sum of money either £100 or £20, a lot of money in those days. He also mentions his living at Newton which is nearby. It would seem that Thomas was fairly well off. 

Dorothy's mother wrote her will on 28 March 1632. Joan made a bequeath to her son-in-law John Pike and his children with no mention of Dorothy. It is believed that she died between her father's will and her mothers. 



children

1. John, bp Whiteparish, 8 November 1613
2. Roberts, b. abt. 1617
3. Dorothy b. abt. 1619
4. Anne b. abt. 1621
5. Israel bp. 20 April 1623, Landford
6. John bp. 18 May 1628, Landford buried there on 18 August 1628.

coming to america

At the age of 48, John Pike made the momentous decision to leave England and take his five children to New England. The sailed aboard the James from the port at Southampton, only 14 miles from their home. They arrived in Boston on 3 June 1635. The fledging colony was only five years old. Israel, the youngest child, was twelve, her oldest brother John was 22. What must they have thought?

Ipswich and Newbury

The family made a brief stop in the town of Ipswich before settling in Newbury on the banks of the Parker River. John remained here until shortly before his death. 

Puritan men, of good social standing were expected to serve their town and colony in civic duties, such as serving on juries. John also acted as an attorney in a couple of court cases. Clearly, he not just a laborer. In a case dated 1647, John was fined 32 shillings for 'taking the coat of Thomas Blomefield, detaining it after it was cried three times and cutting it too pieces'. I'm sure there is a good story there. The last case in which I found his name was in 1654 when he represented the town of Newbury in court. He must have moved to Salisbury thereafter. Perhaps his health was failing and he needed the care of his family.

Although Charles Banks includes a Mrs. Pike in his list of Pike family members aboard the James, there is no record of a second marriage for John. It is possible, women were of little note in those days, unless they did something bad or left a will. So, for now, I will assume that his only marriage was to Dorothy. 

death

John Pike's will was written on 24 May 1654. He died on 26 May, two days later. He was 67. He made bequeaths to two grandsons named John Pike, one the son of John, the other of Robert. He named his daughters, Dorothy, Anne and Israel as well as his daughter-in-laws. His inventory included a house and land in Newbury and land in Salisbury, each valued at 60£. Every item he owned was inventoried down to his mittens. Cattle was very valuable, he sole cow was worth 39£.




sources:


*The New England Historical and Genealogical Register. Boston, MA: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1847-. (Online database: AmericanAncestors.org, New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2001-2018.)


https://www.americanancestors.org/DB202/i/11657/319/0

*THE WILTSHIRE Archeological and Natural History MAGAZINE
By SOCIETY FORMED IN THAT COUNTY · 1885 Volume 22 (Thomas Day of Boscombe)

*The American Genealogist. New Haven, CT: D. L. Jacobus, 1937-. (Online database. AmericanAncestors.org. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2009 - .)


https://www.americanancestors.org/DB283/i/13133/256/24764501






John Robie of Haverhill 1648-1691 and Ann Corliss

John, the last of my Robie line, was born in Hampton, New Hampshire in 1648, son of Henry Robie and Ruth Moore. John settled just over the ...