As with many of the early immigrants to America, the information we have about them is limited, usually to what we know, what we think we know and what we just plain make up. This is also the case for Abraham Morrill. According to Anderson in Great Migration, the origins of Abraham are unknown. His brother Issac is listed on the ship "The Lion" and arrived in 1632/33. Many sources have said that it would make sense if Abraham was also on the "Lion", but this cannot be proved. Anderson believes that based on a land grant of 1635, Abraham had to have been born no later than 1614. One source said was born in 1586 in Broad Oak, Essex, however there is nothing that would give credence to this claim.
|seal of the Mass Bay Co.|
Abraham and his brothers' names are also found on a record from a 1638 list of members of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company. This Order was started by Robert Keayne who was born in Windsor, England, 1595. His father John Keayne, was a butcher, but Robert's interest moved him toward a career in merchant tailoring. He moved to London and served his apprenticeship until admitted to membership of the Merchant Tailor Corporation of 1615. He joined the Honorable Artillery Company of London in 1623. He emigrated to Boston, via the ship "Defense", in 1635 and was elected the first Captain of the newly chartered order. The order was established to train young gentlemen officers for service in the various militias of the Colony. This order is still in existence. Check out their website: Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company. The companies headquarters has been located in Faneuil Hall since 1746.
In 1638 a group of men headed by Simon Bradstreet and Samuel Dudley petitioned the General Court to begin a new plantation in an area known as Merrimack. This plantation was first called Colchester, and on a 1639 document listing the original planters is the name Abraham Morrill. In 1640 the first division of land was made, Abraham and about 50 other men, and one widow, received their town lots. The town name was also changed at that time to Salisbury. Abraham's house lot was between Richard Currier and Richard North, not to far from the Meeting House. See Salisbury Plat Map
|Isaac Morrill House built in 1680|
In 1645 Abraham finally married. His wife was Sarah Clement. Sarah was born in about 1625/26 in England, She was the daughter of Robert and Lydia Clement. Robert and his family left England for the Colony in 1642. He landed and stayed in Haverhill where he became an influential and wealthy member of that community, and the owner of the first grist mill. He was one of the five to take the deed of the town from the Passagut and Saggahew Indians in 1642. He eventually came to own an island in the Merrimack River that is still known as
Children of Abraham and Sarah:
Jacob b. 24 Aug 1648
Sarah b. 24 Oct. 1650 m. Philip Rowell
Abraham b. 14 Nov 1652
Moses b. 28 Dec 1655
Aaron b. 9 Aug 1658
Richard b. 6 Feb 1659/60
Lydia b. 8 Mar 1660/61
Hepzibah b. Jan 1662/63
Abraham Morrill died in Roxbury on 18 June 1662, possibly while visiting his deceased brother's family. Isaac had died exactly six months prior to Abraham. Abraham left a young wife with 6 children under 18 years of age, the youngest, depending on the year was either an infant or unborn. Abraham himself was probably less than 50 years of age when he died. The will of Abraham Morrill is signed two days before his death, the signature being not much more than a scribble. He is believed to be buried in Roxbury in the Eustis Street Burying Ground, in the same cemetery as his brother.
To his "dear and loving wife" Abraham left one half of the entire estate outright. The other half was to be split between his six surviving children which he mentions by name: Isaack, Abraham, Jacob, Sarah, Moses, and Lidda. His wife Sarah was carrying their youngest child, as yet unborn. Being the eldest, Isaack was to receive a double portion once he reaches the age of 21. Abraham's wife Sarah and his son Isaack were appointed executors of the estate.