Christopher and Cicely Pakeman b. 1503

Christopher and Cicely Pakeman 13th great grandparents on RootsMagic tree.

Christopher Pakeman was born in 1503 in Wrabness, Essex, England, a tiny village on the River Stour in southeastern England, UK. Cicely was probably born in the same village, her last name is unknown. She and Christopher had 4 sons and 3 daughters. Christopher owned and rented lands, Butlers and Fullers, known as tenements in 1500s England.

Christopher’s will was read November 16, 1557. “My body to be buryed in the churche yeard of Wrabnas … Item I gyve to Cecely my wyff my tenne(men)t called fullers butlers … for the space off iii yeres aftere my deces … aftr I wyll that thomas my sonne have yt to hyme & to hys heyers of hys body lawfully begoten payyng out of the legaces that shal be reheresed hereaft(er)”. Cicely also had to “keep the children w(i)t(h) meat & drynke”. Thomas collected rent and shared that rent with his siblings Annis, Harry, John, Jone, Lawrence and Margaret.

Christopher died in 1557, Cicely lived a few years longer. They’re buried at All Saints’ Church, the oldest building in the village, built around 1100. Their gravestones from the 1550s are long gone.

In the cemetery and churchyard is a bell cage with one church bell. There’s a local story about the bells at All Saints. “The churchyard at All Saints in Wrabness has a bell in a cage as a result of the Devil’s work. When the church tower with its five bells collapsed in the 17th century, the idea was to hang two bells in the wooden cage as a temporary measure. There is only one bell now, dated 1854, but the tower was never rebuilt. Legend, of course, says that every time the village tried to build a new tower, the Devil came along at night and blew it down.”

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Thomas Saunders and Ann Blake b. 1558

Thomas Saunders and Ann Blake 13th great grandparents on RootsMagic tree.

Thomas Saunders was born around 1558 in Over Stowey, Somerset, England, southwestern England, UK. Ann Blake was born around the same time, in the same place. They married on August 3, 1573. After their marriage, Thomas and Ann’s church was Lydeard St Lawrence, 20 miles south of Over Stowey’s church. Thomas and Ann had 3 daughters and 4 sons. All the Saunders children were baptized in Lydeard St Lawrence. The church was built in 1350.

Thomas owned land: Preston Close in Woolavington, Northwalk in Chidden Fitzpayne, meadows in Haleswood and land in Chappeoey [Chapel Leigh]. The lands were in Taunton, a town of Somerset[shire] created between the years 500 and 1000 when Saxons divided England into shires with a Shire-reeve or Sheriff. Shires were divided into hundreds, “an area of 100 hides, the ‘hide’ being the amount of land which would support a peasant family, an extended group of several generations, including grandparents as well as married sons and their children”. By Thomas’s time in the 1550s, peasants [not only kings, earls, dukes, etc.] owned and rented out land.

These lands are in Thomas’s will written May 26, 1609. His estate was settled in September 1609, with Ann as executrix and their children named: Agnes, Christopher, Elizabeth, Joan, John, Nicholas, Robert and Thomas. Children and grandchildren received lands and money.

Thomas was buried on June 11, 1609 at Lydeard St Lawrence. Ann probably died shortly after and was buried in the same place.

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John Blake b. 1522

John Blake 12th great grandfather on RootsMagic tree

John Blake was born in 1522 in Over Stowey, Somerset, England about 100 miles west of London. His parents were Humphrey and Ann Blake. For most of his life, John’s King was Henry number 8. Henry VIII, “To six wives he was wedded. One died, one survived, two divorced, two beheaded”.

Map of Somerset in 1646 at Wikipedia 

Like his dad, John was a clothier. In 1545 John Blake married Joan, last name unknown, at St Peter and St Paul Churchyard in Over Stowey. They had 6 children, each mentioned in John’s will.

John wrote his will on November 25, 1576. He gave tenements [rental properties] and lands to his sons. He gave money to his daughters and god children. He gave money to the poor of Over Stowey, Nether Stowey and Spraxton, small villages in Somerset. “Item I gyve and bequeath unto the poore of overstowey tenne Shillinges. Item I gyve and bequeath to the poore of Netherstowey tenne Shillinges. Item I gyve and bequeath to the poore of Spraxton tenne Shillinges” John died in Over Stowey and was buried on December 10, 1576 at St Peter and St Paul Churchyard in Over Stowey, Sedgemoor District, Somerset, England.

John Blake’s granddaughter Elizabeth Saunders migrated to America in 1630. His 6th great granddaughter Leydia Connable Gaines and family went all the way to Bremer County, Iowa, arrived there in 1854.

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Prudence Heath b. 1597

Prudence Heath 10th great grandma on RootsMagic tree.

Prudence was born in Ware, Hertfordshire, England and baptized there on November 6, 1597. Her parents were William and Agnes Cheney Heath. The town of Ware is 30 miles north of London, it’s as old as the Roman Empire from 55 B.C. The Heath family’s church was St Mary’s Parish, still there today.

In 1622 Prudence married Edward Morris, he was also from Ware. They were married in London, on Friday, October 25 at St Mary Mounthaw a parish church “in Old Fish Street Hill”. This church was destroyed in The Great Fire, started in a London bakery on September 2, 1666 and spread fast through the city. Mayor, Sir Thomas Bloodworth ignored the fire or didn’t realize the seriousness and by the time he acted it was a firestorm that lasted 5 days, destroyed one third of London and left 100,000 without homes. “The social and economic problems created by the disaster were overwhelming”. Even though the church burned, and was never rebuilt, a register record with Prudence and Edward’s marriage of 1622 survives.

Marriage in London 1622

Prudence and Edward had 4 children, all born in Ware, all left for America. Prudence and Edward both died in their 30s, Edward in 1631, Prudence in 1632. Around this time Prudence’s bothers William and Issac left for America and Prudence’s kids did too. Daughter Elizabeth migrated in 1635, she was 11 and was a servant to George Giddings. Son Isaac migrated the same year, he was with the Ruggles family and age 9. Youngest son Edward Morris (7th great grandpa of Elizabeth Speedy) stayed in Ware until 1651 then left for America to join his family there.

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John & Frances Partridge b. 1578

John and Frances Partridge 11th great grandparents on RootsMagic tree.

John Partridge was born in 1578 in Olney, Buckinghamshire, England. Olney is in central England, 30 miles north of London, on the River Great Ouse. John Newton, who wrote the hymn Amazing Grace, was from Olney too. The town is also famous on Pancake Day, which falls on Shrove Tuesday, Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, the day before Lent. On this day since 1445, in Olney there’s a pancake race. “The Olney pancake race is now world famous. Competitors have to be local housewives and they must wear an apron and a hat or scarf.”

Olney Pancake Race and Photo Author: Robin Myerscough

The Partridge family lived there in Olney. John and Frances had 2 children: William and Jane. Not much is known of their lives until 1647 the year John wrote his will. “John Partridge of Olney, laborer, now deceased, did give grant and dispose of all and singular his goods, cattle, chattels and debts unto William Geynes, Richard Kent, and Roger Tayre of Olney upon this trust that they maintain Frances Partridge, widow, the then wife of the aforesaid John, so long as she should live after his decease, and also pay the debts of the said John.”

When Frances died the remainder of their possessions was left to son William and son in law Henry Gaines husband of Jane Partridge. “The residue was to be divided between the children of William Partridge and of Henry Geynes who now or late were in New England.” This Gaines family through descendants would travel from Olney, England all the way to Iowa where Mary Gaines married James Miller in 1878 and their first grandbaby Faber Miller was born in 1905.

John died in 1647 or 48, Frances probably soon after. Both are buried at St Peter and St Paul Churchyard. Their headstones don’t survive. Newton, of Amazing Grace is in this same cemetery. The St Peter and St Paul church at the cemetery is known for its spire 185 feet high.

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George Parkhurst b. 1588

George Parkhurst 11th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree

George Parkhurst was born in 1588 in Ipswich, England. He married Phebe Lette and they had 9 children. Their daughter Phebe was baptized, “1612 Pheby Parkhurst the daughter of George Parkhurst of the Key Parish and fo Phebe his wiffe 29 November”. This church, St Mary at the Quay (Key), is Quay Place now, their website has a timeline featuring George and Phebe Leete Parkhurst’s 1610 marriage, about 30 years after Queen Elizabeth’s 2nd visit to the church. In 1948 the church was officially closed, then remodeled and reopened as Quay Place. Quay Place has a Facebook page with photos of the remodel. https://quayplace.co.uk/quay-place-history/quay-place-history-timeline/.

George was mentioned in his dad’s will of 1610. “The will of John Parkhurst of the parish of Saynte Marye Keye in the town of Ipswich co. Suffolk, clothier 29 Mar 1610. To son George Parkhurst all shopstuff, all my implements of trade as a shearman, all my books of what title and print, and all the rest of my goods and stock, movables and immovables.”

Watertown mapBy 1642 George had left Ipswich, England and was in Massachusetts. He was a freeman on May 10 1643 in Boston. George’s first wife Phebe could have arrived with him or could have died in England, it’s unknown. George remarried in Massachusetts and he and 2nd wife had a few more children. His 2nd wife was Elizabeth the widow of John Simson. Both George and John were original English land owners in Watertown. On the map of Watertown, they’re neighbors, No. 12 right in between Strawberry Hill and the Meeting House. George has land at the top right too, No 16 above Sherman’s Pond

On June 13, 1655 George sold his last piece of land in America land, his 2nd wife and younger children were back in England, George joined them. George died and was buried June 18, 1675. He was buried at St Lawrence Church about 1 mile from St Mary at the Quay church. St Lawrence Church built in is also still there and now a restaurant, public center. Ipswich has lots of medieval churches.

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John Jones b. 1594

John Jones 10th great grandma on RootsMagic tree

John Jones was born in 1594, in England. A minster, on December 19, 1613 he was ordained as Deacon of Peterboro and by 1619 he was the minster at Abbot’s Ripton in Cambridgeshire, England. In 1630 the courts removed John for not following rites and rituals of the Church of England. In 1635 John and family left England for America. They sailed with another minister Peter Bulkeley- also a Miller ancestor, John and Peter’s children married in Connecticut in 1640.Jones, John suspended

Jones and BulkeleyOn 6 April 1637 the church of Concord ‘kept a day of humiliation, chose Mr Bulkeley teacher and Mr. Jones pastor’. In August 1637 John and other minsters held an Ecclesiastical Council- they worked on their new religion: beliefs, requirements, practices in the new world. In 1644 another council was held and this time Peter Bulkeley and John Jones split- they couldn’t agree so John Jones and family left Concord and went to Fairfield Connecticut where John was the 1st pastor of the Congregational Church of Fairfield. John and Peter’s kids were married by this time, Peter’s son Thomas, married to Sarah Jones, Thomas and Sarah Jones Bulkeley went with John, to Fairfield.

John Jones as minister in Fairfield is shown in a book, Prime Ancient Society of Fairfield, Connecticut, summarized: ‘It is Lord’s Day. Sabbath hush pervades the air. At nine o’clock the drum summons the people, the meeting-house is a plain low structure, as people enter the men go to one side women go to the other. The children are put under the care of the tithing-man. Mr. Jones begins the service with a long prayer, then a longer sermon, a short prayer and the benediction. A brief intermission at noon then the afternoon service. At close of service people walked home and devoted their hours to the reading of the Bible and religious conversation in the family. The minister was expected to be vigilant, observant, energetic in respect to the innumerable details of town affairs. He had a sort of censorship in respect to matters of public import. His influences were far reaching’.

John Jones died and was buried in 1664. His burial place is in Old Burying Ground Cemetery in Fairfield, CT, about 10 miles north of the Long Island sound. His original headstone is long gone, there’s a monument added in recent times.

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Henry Wolcott b. 1578

Henry Wolcott 12th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree

Henry was born in December 1578 in Lydeard St Lawrence, Somerset, England and baptized there on December 6 at Lydeard St. Lawrence Church. In 1606 he married Elizabeth Saunders in the same church. The Wolcott family left for America in 1630 on the The Mary and John. They lived in Dorchester, Massachusetts for a year or so, then moved to 100 miles west to Windsor, Connecticut.
In Dorchester Humphrey was an assessor, fenceviewer and selectman. He was a deputy of the Court, constable and tax collector in Windsor. Henry’s brother John was living in Lydeard in April 1636 and wrote a letter to Henry. John wrote Henry of their brother Christopher’s death, King Charles at war with Scotland, how times had changed and prayers for Henry’s safety in the new country.

Henry and his wife died within a couple months, “Mr Henry Wolcot dyed may 30th 1655. The wife if Henry Wolcot dyed July 5 1655”. They’re buried in Palisado Cemetery in Windsor, CT. They share a tombstone added years after their deaths, Henry’s inscription on one side, Elizabeth’s on the other.

Henry made his will o the day he died, “The thirtieth of May (1655), I HENRY WOLCOTT, sick of body, but of perfect memory, do make and ordain this my last will and testament, in manner and form following. First I commend my soul to God my maker, hoping assuredly through the only merit of Jesus Christ my Saviour, to be a partaker of life everlasting; and I commend my body to the earth, whereof it was made. I will that my wife shall have all my house lot, orchard, garden, hopyard and my lot in Plymouth meadow, during the term of her natural life. Also, I give unto my wife two of my cows, and half the household goods in my dwelling house”. Henry mentions each child and gifts them specific items.

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Humphrey Wise b. 1591

Humphrey Wise 10th great grandpa on RootsMagic

Humphrey Wise or Wythe was born in 1591 in England. His dad Benjamin died in 1601 and “with his mother Humphrey was an infant co-executor of the will of his father, he received land in Harkstead and Erwartoon”. On April 8, 1616 Humphrey married Susan Pakeman, they had eight daughters and 2 sons. Humphrey lived in Suffolk County, near the River Orwell, on the eastern edge of England on the North Sea. Humphrey has records in Ewarton, Harkstead, Holbrook, Nacton and Woolvertsone, villages, all within 10 miles of each other in ipswich, England. Humphrey was a mariner, sailor.

The Wise family, parents and kids sailed to America in 1636. Humphrey and Susan were in their 40s. They settled in Ipswich, Massachusetts where Humphrey received a one acre “house lott and south side of Hartbreake Hill and a farm one hundred acres on the South side of a creek called the Labour in Vayne”. Heartbreak Hill has a legend involving a sailor and an Indian Maiden at Historic Ipswich.

Humphrey died in 1638, his burial place isn’t known and he didn’t leave a will. His widow remarried and her new husband Samuel Greenfield took control of the estate. the Court got involved.

In Boston January 13 1638/9. “Humfry Wise of Ipswich, died intestate, and Samuel Greenfeild late of Salem married his widow and took into his possession the lands and goods of the said Humfry, without legal order. The Court held at Ipswich 26 : 1 : 1639, caused them to deliver an inventory of the estate which amounted to about 140 pounds Wise left a wife and five children, Beniamyn, Joseph, Em., Sarah and Ann, besides some that were married and had received their portions. Samuel Greenfeild was appointed administrator, and with his consent the Court sold the house, and house lot of an acre & a planting lot of six acres with the appurtenances to William ffellowes for 20 pounds, also the farm of about 120 acres to Thomas Emerson for four score pounds, and such other sales of cattle & goods that the said Samuel had made the Court allowed. The money was given to Samuel Greenfeild, he giving bond for 120 pounds to bring up the five children, until the sons were twenty one years, and the daughters eighteen, at which time each to receive a certain portion of the estate”.

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George Gardiner b. 1599

George Gardiner 10th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree.

George was born in February 1599 in London. In the genealogy world there’s a ‘fierce debate’ on his parents, currently his parents are unproven with a couple theories. George had 3 wives, the first was Sarah who probably died before he sailed for America around 1636, there’s not much info on Sarah. Herodias Long was his 2nd wife there are novels, books and journals written about Herodias. George and Herodias divorced after 20 years, they were in court many times. Herodias married John Porter- her 3rd husband. George married Lydia Ballou his 3rd wife in 1665. George had children with all wives, Lydia is our ancestor, they had 6 children.

George was a freeman in Newport, Rhode Island on December 17, 1639 and a landowner on January 29, 1639/40. He was a Sergeant of an early colonial company, on the grand jury, a constable and he witnessed land deeds including a deed on June 29, 1660 ‘from an Indian called Socho of a tract of land at Pettaquamscot’. On August 1662 he and Robert Stanton bought more lands near the Pettaquamscot Purchase. And later on George’s sons with Herodias would inherit all of their stepdad John Porter’s lands in the same area.

Gardiner land map

Map of Gardiner son’s land

George died in 1677, he lived to age 78 and is probably buried in a very old forgotten cemetery somewhere in Newport, Rhode Island.

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