Gershom Smith b. 1679

Gershom Smith 8th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree

Gershom Smith was born on November 30, 1679 in Hartford, Connecticut. Gershom’s dad Johnathan came to America from England around 1640, his mom Margaret Bushnell was born in Salem, Massachusetts.


Connecticut marriages 1640-1939 at FamilySearch

Gershom married Hannah Judd: “Gershom Smith of Glastonbury and Hannah Judd the daughter of Benjamin Judd of Farmington was married on the 4 day of May announced Dom 1710.” They had 2 children, a son Gershom Jr who died young and a daughter Hannah who married and had a family. Gershom’s older brother Richard wrote a will in 1725, on Valentine’s Day, that named younger brother Gershom as executor (manager) of the estate. Richard never married, had no kids. Gershom died before Richard so Richard ’s estate went to court on 6 June, 1749. Gershom’s daughter Hannah had married Richard Risley who was named executor of his wife’s uncle’s estate.

Gershom died August 28, 1747 in Glastonbury. His widow Hannah went to live with daughter Hannah Smith Risley and her family. Gershom, with his son are buried at Green Cemetery in Glastonbury.

Sources

  • Connecticut Town Birth Records, pre-1870 (Barbour Collection) at Ancestry
  • Connecticut marriages 1640-1939 at FamilySearch
  • Headstone photo at Find a grave memorial 194149478 “Added by Margery Bogus 16 Oct 2019”
  • The American genealogist database at American Ancestors.
  • A digest of the early Connecticut probate records volume 3 at HathiTrust
  • Find a grave memorials 203140948 and 16547820

Hope Angell and Lydia Olney b. 1685

Hope Angell and Lydia Olney 8th great grandparents on RootsMagic tree.
Hope Angell was born December 22, 1685 in Providence, Rhode Island. Thomas Angell, his grandpa, was one of 5 men who, with Roger Williams, founded Providence.
Lydia Olney was born April 30, 1688 in Providence. Her grandpa, Thomas Olney, came to America from England in 1635, he was 2 years old.
Hope and Lydia both had at least 8 siblings, they all grew up in Providence and most stayed there in Providence or very nearby.  Hope and Lydia married on May 22, 1712. They had 5 sons and 2 daughters. Hope was a farmer, a carpenter, a weaver and a cooper (cask and barrel maker). On February 12, 1749 Lydia died of consumption (tuberculosis) she was 60. Hope died 10 years, minus a day later, on February 11, 1759, he was 73 years old.
Hope was in charge (an executor) of his dad’s estate in 1724 and his brother’s estates in 1742 and 1744. Hope wrote his will on April 12, 1755. Abiah, the oldest son received all Hope’s ‘waering apparell’, 2nd and 3rd sons Oliver and Elisha were to oversee the estate. Hope’s carpenter, cooper and weaving tools are listed and given to his sons. The estate settled on May 15 1759 with only son Oliver in charge of the estate, Elisha had died.
Hope’s son Oliver Angell leads all the way to Delia Angell of Shell Rock, Iowa the great grandma of Elizabeth Speedy. Oliver is buried in the Oliver Angell Lot, also know  as the Hope Angell Lot and the Rhode Island Hist. Cemetery North Providence #8. This tiny cemetery has 19 burials, was originally on Angell farmland and is now in a residential area between two houses. Hope Angell and Lydia Olney Angell’s burial place is unknown but may be here in an unmarked grave with 19 other Angells. 

Rhode Island, U.S., Wills and Probate Records, 1582-1932 at Ancestry


Sources

Mary Wilson b. 1690

Mary Wilson 7th great grandma on RootsMagic tree.
Mary was born November 4, 1690 in Boston, Massachusetts. Her parents were William and Mary Pearce Wilson, they were both from Boston. Mary’s first husband was John Diamond in 1709, he died within 3 years. Mary’s 2nd husband was Samuel Connable, he was also a widow, they married July 23, 1713 in Boston at the Second Church. Cotton Mather was the pastor on the record, famous for his actions in the Salem witch hysteria and promoting the new smallpox vaccine.

Mary and Samuel had 6 sons and 4 daughters, all born in Boston. Samuel had a business, probably a distillery at Distal House Square now Bowker Street. The Connable family lived on Cross Street a couple city blocks east, all in the North End area. Businesses, houses and meadows are long gone. The Old Statehouse is still there, a couple city blocks south of the Connable home. The original statehouse from 1657 burned in the Fire of 1711, this one was built in 1712-13.


Massachusetts, U.S., Town and Vital Records, 1620-1988 at FamilySearch.org

Maybe this courthouse is where Mary presented her husband’s estate in 1746. Samuel died without a will. Mary with children made an agreement, “I Mary Cunnabell widow of Samuel Cunnabell as Exspressed in the foregoing Instrument do hereby Concent and agree to all that my Cheldren have agree’d upon in the afore written Instrument Relateing to my Decaced Husband and their Deceaced Fathers Estate In witness whereof I do hereunto Sett my hand and Seal this Ninteenth day of November anno domini 1746 In the twentyeth veair of his majestys Reigne.”

When Mary died in 1759 her and Samuel’s inventory were in the court, Their inventory included brass and iron kettles, a pestle and mortar, a frying pan, a ‘number of old books’, a featherbed and a chest of drawers, an old trunk, 4 swords and 3 silver spoons.

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Samuel Hill b. 1680

Samuel Hill 7th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree.
Samuel was born February 16, 1680 in Newbury, Massachusetts. His parents were Samuel and Abigail Wheeler Hill, they came to Newbury before 1679, Samuel’s grandparents came from England to America around 1638.

Samuel grew up in Newbury, MA on the Atlantic Coast know for its ‘marshes’. In 1708 Samuel bought or was given land in Rehoboth, Massachusetts, 80 miles south of Newbury and 10 miles west of Plymouth, Massachusetts. In Rehoboth he married Ann Brown and they had 9 children.

Samuel died July 27, 1732, at age 53, within a month of his dad’s death. Estate papers in Rehoboth are dated August 15, 1732 and include an inventory. In the inventory were money, books, pewter, linen, sheep’s wool, flax, cotton, a cart and plows, livestock and lands with “a piece of meadow”.

Most of Samuel’s information comes from his wife Ann Brown, the great granddaughter of Elizabeth Tilley and John Howland who both sailed on the Mayflower. Elizabeth Tilley and John Howland had 10 children who all survived to adulthood, a rare thing in the 1600s. They had more than 88 grandkids, “As a result, they likely have more descendants living today than any other Mayflower passengers” about 3,000,000. The Mayflower’s 400th Anniversary was in 2020, but minimized, because of the global pandemic. (Proving Elizabeth Speedy Roose’s Mayflower connection requires a couple more notarized records- then done. I’ve written an informal ‘proof’ here)

Sources

Clement English b. 1646

Clement English 8th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree.

Clement was born in Massachusetts in 1646. His parents aren’t known but it’s likely they migrated from England during the ‘great migration’ of 1620-1640. Clement married Mary Waters in Salem, on August 27, 1667. Mary’s family was part of Salem’s colonial beginnings, so it’s likely Clement English’s family was too. Marriages in the 1600s were rarely random, but planned within churches, communities, families.

Clement and son Benjamin in Massachusetts Town Records

Clement and Mary had 3 sons and 3 daughters. The family stayed in Salem where Clement was a merchant in one of the busiest ports in colonial America. In 1668 Clement and his brother in law William Punchard were two of many who signed petitions against taxes or imposts. “Seventhly Whether customs though layd on wine, tobacco and things not Essentiall to life were euer wont to bee layd on corne and such necessaries wthout which wee Cannot possibly subsist.” The courts didn’t repeal the taxes but did reduce the taxes.

Petition against taxes 1668

Clement had a short life, he died at age 36 on October 23, 1682. There is a summary “Abstracts from will, inventories etc. on file in the office of the clerk of courts Salem, Mass. Clement English, 4th mo., 1683. An Inventory of the estate of Clement English, taken 24th of May, 1683. Amount L43 04s. 6d., and Administration granted unto Mary, the relict. 29 June, 1683, mentions for the bringing up of the children.” But the actual papers of the Clement’s will, the inventory, probate are gone, missing.

Clement and family lived during one smallpox epidemic which reached Salem in October 1678. William Lord of Salem had small pox, he and family had to “keep within their house, and that they do not offer to sale any of their ware, viz. bread, cake, gingerbread and the like, and that they suffer none to come to their house but what necessity requires.” July 10, 1679 Salem courts ordered a fast day or day of prayer to help stop the spread, “in respect of that most dreaded contagious disease, wherewith sundry places have been sorely visited.” Because Clement died young, age 36, it’s possible smallpox was the cause, no proof & no facts- it’s speculation.

Sources

Mary Waters b. 1646

Mary Waters 8th great grandma on RootsMagic tree

Mary Waters was born in Salem around 1646. Her parents, Richard and Rejoice Plaisse Waters, had migrated from London to Salem, Massachusetts 10 years earlier in 1636. Mary was in a big family with 10 siblings who all stayed in the Salem area, some as neighbors, their whole lives. On August 27, 1667 Mary married Clement English. Clement was a merchant. He and Mary had 6 children.

In 1671 Mary’s dad Richard’s will left lands & money to his kids. “Allso my will is that the rest of my children viz Abigail punchard Mary English Susana Pulsiver and Hanah Striker who neither of them haue had any pt. or portion of my estate already as my fore mentioned Children have had, shall haue the rest of my estate.”

Mary [Waters English] Stephens house in Essex Antiquarian at American Ancestors.

Mary, her married sisters and a brother all had homes on Cat Cove, part of Salem Harbor, about 1 mile northeast of Salem Commons. Mary’s husband Clement built a “dwelling house and a little cowhouse” on the land. The map snapshot shows Water family land, bottom then clockwise, Hannah Waters Striker, Abigail Waters Punchard, Ezekiel Waters 2, Mary Waters English Stephens. The Google map shows the area today. Mary’s house was still there in 1702, gone before 1742.

Mary was a widow in 1682 and married John Stephens, a fisherman, who helped with her with her husband Clement’s estate. The family stayed in Cat Cove, “Historically the Salem Harbor was the site of one of the major international ports in the colonies.”

Sources

Sarah Whipple b. 1642

Sarah Whipple 10th great grandma on RootsMagic tree

Sarah Whipple was born on February 6, 1642 in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Her parents were John Whipple and Sarah, new to America in the 1630s. Sarah had 10 brothers and sisters. By 1658 the Whipple family was in Providence, Rhode Island where Roger Williams had set up a community.

John Whipple will in The early records of the town of Providence

In Providence Sarah married John Smith, known as John Smith (Miller), because he owned the town mill and there were a 2 John Smiths in the area, the other a mason. Sarah and John had 10 children. Two children, Sarah Smith m. Richard Clemence and Joseph Smith m. Lydia Gardiner, are 7th great grandparents of Elizabeth Speedy. In that small community the families were linked together through generations. Sarah Whipple’s sister Mary Whipple m. Epenetus Olney also 7th great grandparents of Elizabeth Speedy.

Sarah and family lived through King Philips War. “March 30, 1676, Providence was attacked … citizens had removed to Newport … leaving only 27 men to defend the town … the Indians burned houses, the mill, the tannery, and the miller’s house on Moshassuck river. John Smith [Jr] town clerk … the records were in his possession [and] thrown from his burning house into the millpond to preserve them … One wonders what part Sarah could have played in saving the records.”

Sarah’s husband John died in 1681. She and her son John Jr. were overseers of the estate. In John’s will. “I bequeath to Sarah my wife halfe the mill with ye halfe of ye land”. Lots of lands in the will: ten acres on a hill and valley where the house stands, land & meadow at the west River, the meadow at the Great meadow.

Sarah is in her dad John Whipple’s will of May 8, 1682, “I Give unto my three daughters (Namely) Sarah , Mary & Abigall unto Every of them Tenn shillings”.

Around 1684 Sarah married 2nd husband Richard Arnold, also a widow. Richard’s will of 1710 mentions Sarah too. “I Richard Arnold of Providence … Considering the uncertainty of this life, & not knowing how soone it may please God to take me out of this world … my last will … First I give to Sarah my wife for the Terme of her naturall life my two lotts in the Towne with the orchard & house upon them & also my meadow at the West River”. Sarah probably died a few years after 2nd husband Richard and at her death she had at least 20 grandchildren.

Sources

Grace Child b. 1689

Grace Child 7th great grandma on RootsMagic tree

Grace was born October 27, 1689 in Roxbury, Massachusetts to Benjamin Child and Grace Morris. Grace’s ancestors came to America from England and Wales in the early 1620-40s. Grace married Timothy Walker on May 14, 1713. Grace’s sister Mary married Timothy’s brother Peter Walker. in 1715. The Walker family ancestors were early colonial immigrants too. Grace and Timothy had 6 children, 5 daughters and a son. Grace and her family belonged to the original church in Rehoboth, today it’s the Newman Congregational Church, they practice and preach “radical hospitality”, established in 1624.

Grace died October 30, 1729, she was 40 years old and is buried at Newman Cemetery, a mile or so north of the Walker House where she and her family lived.

Snapshot of Grace Child’s ancestors, Ancestry family tree

Timothy started building the Walker House in 1724. The house is still there, open for tours and a house study site. Just announced at the site, it will be a farm again in Spring 2021. “When Philip Walker [Timothy Walker’s grandpa] died in 1679 his estate included 177 acres of land,” said Val Talmage, executive director of PRI. “By 1891, the farmland associated with the antique dwelling was 96 acres. And by 1960, the land was reduced to the current configuration of just over one acre. It’s so exciting that this most significant historic place will once again be a productive farm.”

Source

Timothy Walker b. 1687

Timothy Walker 7th great grandpa on RootsMagic tree.

Timothy Walker was born on September 14, 1687 in Rehoboth, Massachusetts to Samuel and Martha Ide Walker. Timothy’s 4 grandparents came to America from England in the 1630-40s. Timothy was the 3rd generation to live on his family’s farm. He had an older brother and 4 younger sisters.

On May 6, 1713 Timothy published his intention of marriage to Grace Child and they married on May 14th. Grace and Timothy lived on the Walker family farm. In Rehoboth, Timothy farmed and worked at the family sawmill and inherited both when his dad and his brother both died in 1812. The farm and sawmill are long gone but at 432 Massasoit Ave., East Providence, RI the house Timothy built is still there: The Walker House. Timothy was a widow in 1729 and married 2nd wife Rachel Beverly on January 15, 1730. Timothy wrote his will in November 1744 and died in 1745. The will is 32 pages, it includes his children’s names, an inventory and his signature. Timothy is buried at Newman Cemetery about 1 mile from the Walker House, his house.

The Walker House is on land Timothy’s dad Samuel Walker inherited from his dad Philip Walker. The Walker House stayed in the family until 1812 and was donated to Preserve Rhode Island in 1984. “At the time of its erection it was considered a marvel of architecture. North of the house were apple orchards and outbuildings, including a barn, shed, carriage house, and chicken house.”

Philip Walker House building began in 1724

Major updates were completed in 2008 by Preserve Rhode Island, ‘The Statewide Advocate for Rhode Island’s Historic Places’. Today Timothy Walker’s house is a study house, “for architectural history and historic preservation students, who can benefit from first-hand observations of architectural features”. The website has photos, a field study PDF and an orientation packet PDF, 10 pages of detail about the house, its history and the Walker family. Virtual visit: https://www.preserveri.org/walker-house

Sources

Deborah Bell b. 1650

Deborah Bell 10th great grandma on RootsMagic tree

Deborah Bell was born on November 29, 1650 in Boston. Her dad and mom were Thomas and Anna Bell who migrated from England separately, met then married in Boston around 1640. Thomas Bell was one of Boston’s public executioners. Deborah had 7 siblings: John, Joan, Tabitha, Thomas, Hopestill, Moremercy and Joseph.

1670 Stonington census

Deborah married James York on January 19, 1669, probably in Boston. They moved to New London, Connecticut where they were on the 1670 census with 42 other families. Deborah’s brother Thomas Bell and James’s dad James York Sr. were on the census too. They founded a church, The First Congregational Church of Stonington, James Noyes the first pastor is on that same 1670 census. The church is still there today, organized in 1674 it was rebuilt after a fire in 1829. On June 16, 1678 Goodwife York was admitted to the church.

In New London, Deborah and James had 7 children. Deborah was widow in 1676 at age 26. She married Henry Elliot and they had 5 more children. Deborah and Henry Elliot’s marriage is recorded in a diary of the time, “… It was in the 5 day of March 78-79 mrs bruster was buried the 12 day father avery was buried: Henry Eliot was here to be maried Curtice brought the wine,.”

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