Friday, November 14, 2008

Three Generations of Barak Smith and Betsey Drake Family - Rehoboth, Taunton, Grafton, New Hampshire, Moira, New York

Sixth Generation of
Descendants of Henry and Judith Smith
Rehoboth, Massachusetts

Barak (Baruch) SMITH6 (Eleazer5, Henry4, Joshua3, Henry2, Henry1) was born 16 Jun 1764, Rehoboth, Bristol Co., MA[1]. Barak came to Grafton, Grafton Co., NH in 1780 with his parents and siblings[2]. He died 28 Mar 1860, Moira, Franklin Co., NY.

Barak m. c1795 in Grafton, Betsey DRAKE. Betsey was b. 21 Jun 1773, Taunton, Bristol Co., MA, d. 11 Jul 1845, Moira, Franklin Co., NY. She was the daughter of Capt. Daniel Drake and Lois Reed[3].

The Reed family were long-time residents of Taunton. Drakes were at Weymouth[4], then Taunton.

Barak and Betsey resided on the height of land area in Grafton, New Hampshire[2].

About 1821, Barak and Betsey Smith moved to Moira, New York, where their son, Bradford, and other family and friends had moved with their families. Part of Bradford's War of 1812 military service was spent in Plattsburgh, New York, in the general vicinty of what is now Moira[2].

Barak Smith was a tax collector for the town of Grafton. His name appears on deeds from the sale of land by non-resident owners who were delinquent in their taxes[2].

Barak and Betsey Smith had the following children:

  • + Bradford SMITH7, b. 1796, Grafton, NH; d. 17 Sep 1842, Moira, NY[2].

  • Enos SMITH, b. April 1799, Grafton, NH; d. 30 Jul 1877, Grafton, NH[2].

  • Preserved SMITH, b. 1802, Grafton, NH; d. 27 Apr 1883, Moira, NY[2]. One of Preserved's descendants said that he had been told that Betsey and Barak Smith were traveling by covered wagon, moving somewhere else when she began having trouble with her pregnancy. They returned to Grafton. The birth was difficult and the child's life expectancy short. They prayed that the Lord would "preserve the child." They named him "Preserved" because he was preserved by God.

  • Lydia SMITH, b. 1805, Grafton, NH; d. 28 Feb 1882, Moira, NY; m. James S. WOOD[2]. There were several children.

  • Dolly SMITH, b. c1807, Grafton, NH; d. young[2].

  • Betsey SMITH, b. c1809, Grafton, NH; d. young[2].

  • Benjamin SMITH, b. c1812, Grafton, NH; d. 1860, Moira, NY[2]. Unmarried.

  • Daniel D. SMITH, b. 1812, Grafton, NH; d. 9 Jan 1898, Moira, NY[2].

You will find quite a lot about Barak Smith and his ancestors at the Carpenter Museum in Rehoboth.

Researchers of this Smith family after their move to Grafton may find these addresses handy:

Grafton Town Clerk
Birth, death records
TX: (603) 523-7270

Grafton County
Registry of Deeds, County Court House, and other offices.
RR1, Box 65F
North Haverhill, NH 03774-9708
TX: (603) 787-6944

Grafton County Probate Court
3785 Dartmouth College Highway, P. O. Box 3
North Haverhill, NH 03774
TX: 603-787-6931

Seventh Generation of
Descendants of Henry and Judith Smith - Rehoboth, Massachusetts

Bradford SMITH was born 1796 in Grafton, Grafton Co., NH[2]. He died 17 SEP 1842 in Moira[5], Franklin Co., NY. He married 17 Feb 1820 Sarah (Sally) (Wheat) BULLOCK in Grafton. Sally was the daughter of Rev. Joseph Wheat and Bridget (Powers) FARLEY of Canaan, New Hampshire. She was the widow of Asa BULLOCK at the time of her marriage to Bradford SMITH[6].

Bradford is named as head of household in the following Federal enumerations:

  • Census 1820 Dickinson, Franklin Co., NY

  • Census 1830 Moira, Franklin Co., NY

  • Census 1840 Moira, Franklin Co., NY

Capt. Bradford Smith marched to the Battle of Plattsburgh with the New
Hampshire troops in the War of 1812. He later was commissioned
Captain of a light infantry company of militia in Moira, New York, and
returned to Grafton after the battle[2].

Shortly after his marriage to Sally, the family moved to Moira. He
kept a hotel about a mile east from Moira Corners. Lieutenant
Governor Bradish boarded there about 1840. However, when the railroad passed by the town, the hotel failed[2].

Note: Moira, New York, was formed from Dickinson in Franklin County. Hence, some references may be to Dickinson and others to Moira.

Bradford and Sally had the following children:

  • + Bradford SMITH; b. 15 Nov 1820 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY

  • 71. + ii. Joseph Wheat(1) SMITH b: Dec 1823 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY

  • 72. + iii. Zilpha SMITH; b. ABT 1826 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY.
    Zilpha married Solomon Sayles. They had four children:
    Normand M.; Luther P.; Willie; and Martha. The family is found in the 1860 Census.

  • 73. + iv. Clarissa SMITH; b. 2 Dec. 1828 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY. She died 28 Apr 1892Ref. 10. Clarissa married Almond F. FLINT, b. 9 May 1823 in Vermont; d. 23 May 1916Ref. 10. He was a wheelwright. The 1900 Federal Census lists an Almon F. Flint, age 77 living in Moira with his daughter Clara Crozier b. abt 1867, age 35. Almon and Clara were still living in Moira when the 1910 census was taken. Both are listed as widows.

    Clarissa and Almond had the following children:

    Dana H. FLINT, b. abt 1852; Almond H. FLINT, b. abt 1857; Asa FLINT (3 Mar 1861 - 3 Mar 1865)Ref. 10; and Clarissa FLINT. Note: A marriage record in the Methodist Episcopal Church of St. Lawrence, New York states that Dana FLINT m. Edith V. HAWKINS 2 JUL 1887. However, I don't have proof that this is the same Dana Flint.

  • 74. + v. Isaac B.(1) SMITH; b. August 1829 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY. In 1860, he was living in Franklin Co., NY. He, his wife and children are listed on the Federal Census of 1860: Emma J Smith 28; Alice Smith 6; Joseph W Smith 5; Isaac Smith 2. Sarah Smith was living with her son.

Grafton County Court House
RR1, Box 65F
North Haverhill, NH 03774-9708
TX: (603) 787-6944

Grafton County Probate Court
3785 Dartmouth College Highway, P. O. Box 3
North Haverhill, NH 03774
TX: 603-787-6931

State of New York - Health Dept., Division of Vital Records. The fees for a search begin at $22 for a three year search, more for additional time spans ($42 for four to ten years, etc.). It takes five months or longer. The Dept. does suggest requesting directly from the local municipality. They do not have BMD records for Albany, Buffalo, or Yonkers before 1914, so one must contact the local registers for those. At the state level, birth records are available for genealogy research after 75 years and with proof of the death of the individual; death certificates are available 50 years after the individual's death; and marriage records can be obtained 50 years after the deaths of the couple. If you can prove you are a direct descendant, the time constraints may be waived.

Order forms and additional information about obtaining vital records are available online.

If you are looking for records for New York City, visit New York City Municipal Archives.

You may also wish to check New York State Archives for other records, including early wills and probate, and military records.

Eighth Generation of
Descendants of Henry and Judith Smith - Rehoboth, Massachusetts

Bradford SMITH8 (Bradford7, Barak6, Eleazer5, Henry4, Joshua3, Henry2, Henry1) was born 15 Nov 1820 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY.. He died 6 Sep 1906 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. He is interred in Elmwood Cemetery, Detroit, with both wives by his side.

Bradford Smith was the son of Bradford7 and Sally Wheat7 of Grafton, New Hampshire, and Moira, New York.

Bradford married twice.

Bradford m. (1) Lucia Wells WESTON on 9 Mar 1853 in Queens, NY. Lucia was born 3 Sep 1827 in Keeseville/Peru, NY, the daughter of Abner and Cynthia Hunt Weston. Lucia died 24 Jul 1867 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. They were members of Fort Street Presbyterian church, whose records list Lucia's death. She was probably named for her mother's sister, Lucia Hunt Wells.

Bradford m. (2) Julia SPENCER on 28 Oct 1869 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. Julia was born 13 Jul 1829. She died 21 Mar 1889 in Detroit and was buried about 24 Mar 1889 in Detroit.

Bradford graduated 1836 from the Potsdam Academy in Potsdam, NY. He graduated 1850 in Oberlin, OH, receiving a Master of Arts in Education from Oberlin College.

He moved to Detroit with his bride, Lucia Wells Weston, in 1853, to teach at the Houghton School. Bradford pushed for a technical school that would get street waifs and newspaper boys off the street and back in school by allowing them a chance at education and training in practical skills. He was also the first truant officer for the City of Detroit and worked in real estate, platting part of the city. Bradford Smith was appointed by the Governor of Michigan to serve on committee for the prohibition of alcohol.

Bradford led an exemplary life. By all accounts of his children, students, friends, and siblings, he was a man whose life set examples of clean living, Christian charity, and perseverance for generations to come.

Bradford and Lucia had the following children:

  • Mary Lucia SMITH was born 6 Dec 1855 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. She died 6 Dec 1855 in Detroit and was buried 9 Dec 1855 in Detroit.
  • A. Weston SMITH9 was born 10 Jun 1857 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. It's possible his first initial stands for "Abner," his
    grandfather Weston's Christian name. A search of church records in Detroit would most likely produce A. Weston's Christian name. The census of 1910 finds him with his wife, son and daughter boarding in New York City at a Mrs. Wells' residence (probably a cousin or an aunt, since his Grandmother Weston's sister married a Wells). Listed his occupation as furniture salesman. He and his family are found living in Westchester, New York, in the 1920 and 1930 censuses.

  • 78. F iv. Sarah L. SMITH was born 5 Aug 1859 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. She died 11 Mar 1867 in Detroit and was buried 14 Mar 1867 in Detroit. Her mother, Lucia, died later that year.

  • + Frederick Bradford SMITH, Sr., was born 13 Dec 1863 and died 16 Nov 1929. He married Nanette Louise SACKRIDER.

  • 76. + M ii. Joseph Wheat (2) SMITH was born 10 Jun 1865 and died 1924, in Detroit.

Bradford and Julia had the following children:
  • Henry S. SMITH was born 6 May 1872 and died after 1910, prob. Chicago, Illinois.
  • Dwight T. SMITH was born 6 Dec 1876 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. He died 2 Jun 1892 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI.
  • Lucia Weed SMITH was born 12 Aug 1873 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI, m. 27 Aug 1912 Edward J. STIMSON, a widower. No known children. Before her marriage, Lucia was a Detroit school teacher. She was called "Aunt Lucie" by her nephew, Fred, Jr.

Links to various databases and resources that are free.


1. Rehoboth, Massachusetts, Vital Records, 1642-1896

2. Walter G. Smith, "Genealogy of Eleazer Smith, Grafton, NH."

3. The Drake family in England and America, 1360-1895 : and the descendants of Thomas Drake of Weymouth, Mass., 1635-1691
4. History of Weymouth, Massachusetts
5. Moira Community Cemetery.

6. Genealogy files of Frederick B. Smith.

7. U.S. Federal Census of 1820.

8. U.S. Federal Census of 1830.

9. U.S. Federal Census of 1840.

10. U.S. Federal Census of 1860.

11. U.S. Federal Census of 1910.

12. U.S. Federal Census of 1920.

13. U.S. Federal Census of 1930.

Additional Sources:

The details about Bradford Smith, M.A., and his wives are found in church records, City of Detroit records, U.S. Federal censuses, vital records, newspaper clippings, and other public documents. If you are a descendant of Bradford's, you may wish to contact the Burton Historical Collection of the Detroit Public Library system.

Franklin County, New York, GenWeb Project

You'll find a growing free database of census images, vital records, cemetery and tombstone transcriptions, and message boards. Looking for free documents? Check out the Archives for a listing of what transcribers have made available online for free.

Wayne County, Michigan, GenWeb Project.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Four Generations of the James Weston and Abigail Dunham Family

Continuation of the desendants of Edmund Weston and of George Soule and Mary Bucket.

First Generation

James WESTON4 (Zachariah3, Edmund2, Edmund1) was born 31 Oct 1723 in Plympton, Plymouth Co., MA. James was the son of Zachariah Weston and Mehitable Shaw. He died 26 Oct 1786 in New Braintree, MA[2].

James married Abigail DUNHAM5 (Ebenezer4, Samuel3, Samuel2, John1) on 9 Feb 1748/1749 in Plymouth. Abigail was born 23 Nov 1720 in Plymouth Co., MA. Abigail was the daughter of Abigail Smith and Ebenezer Dunham. She died in New Braintree, MA.

James served in the American Revolutionary War. He is a proven descendant of George Soule, a signator of the Mayflower Compact.

James and Abigail had the following children:

+ M Maj. James WESTON, Jr. was born 30 Jun 1755 and died 22 May 1840.

F Lusana WESTON was born 25 Aug 1749 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

M Samuel WESTON was born 18 Mar 1750/1751 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

M Andrew WESTON was born 27 Feb 1753 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

M Jonathan WESTON was born 20 Feb 1757 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

M Elijah (1) WESTON was born 6 Jan 1759 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

M Joshua WESTON was born 13 Mar 1761 and died 7 Aug 1840.

M Abner (1) WESTON was born 26 Nov 1764 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

F Huldah (Huldia) WESTON was born 10 Feb 1767 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

Second Generation

Maj. James Weston was an officer in the American Revolutionary War. Later, he moved his family to the Lake Champlain region of New York.

21. Maj. James WESTON.5 (James4, Zachariah3, Edmund2, Edmund1) is a proven descendant of George Soule, a signator of the Mayflower Compact. James was born 30 Jun 1755 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA. Note: The Middleboro Town Records of Birth record his birth as June 30, 1755. However, he states in his affidavit that it was June 11. James died 22 May 1840 in AuSable, NY.

James, married Sarah "Sally" WITHERELL on 12 Aug 1784 in New Braintree, Worchester, MA[3]. Sarah was born 22 May 1766 in New Braintree, MA. She died 22 May 1840 in AuSable, NY. I have not been able to find a marriage certificate in New Braintree. Furthermore, Sally's parentage is elusive. Most likely, she is either the daughter or sister of Samson Wetherell of New Braintree. I have records from New Braintree's town clerk that list several births, deaths, and marriages of Witherells, including two births of James and Sally's children, but not of Sally herself. I also received information on the Witherells which indicates that Sally is most likely the descendant of the Witherells of Bristol County, Massachusetts, not Rev. William Witherell of Scituate.

"Sally Witherell Weston was remarkable for antipathy to household dirt.
She made life miserable to her husband by her constant struggle to
keep things clean. Weary at last of her pastime and being disturbed,
he went off, and stayed twenty years, while Sally cleaned house. At
last thinking Sarah might be done and resting, James returned home
unannounced and remained a week, then closed his eyes, passing quietly
into the sleep of death. Sally, being aged, was called to close her
'book of life.' She was buried in the same grave with her husband."4

James, and Sarah had the following children. (NOTE: Only two of their children are recorded in New Braintree Birth Records.:

+ M Elijah WESTON was born 5 Feb 1785.

+ M James WESTON was born 23 May 1786[3] (Birth record states that James Weston was born 23 May 1786 in Braintree to James and Sarah Weston.)

+ M Samuel WESTON

+ M Aaron, Sr. WESTON was born 1791.

+ M Harvey WESTON.

+ M Abner WESTON (proven and documented descendant of George Soule for the Society of Mayflower Descendants in America), b. 1796, d. 13 Feb 1866[5].

+ M Z. Newcomb WESTON, b. 6 Dec 1806 in Chesterfield, NY; d. 15 Jul 1858, Plattsburg, NY, m. 1830 Luceretia Hobart, b. abt 1812.

F Sally WESTON was born in AuSable/Clintonville, NY. Sally married William FERRIS in Clinton Co., NY.

F Polly WESTON was born in AuSable/Clintonville, NY. Polly married John MACE in Clinton Co., NY.

+ F Sophia WESTON.

F Flavia WESTON was born in AuSable/Clintonville, NY. Flavia married Charles WHITE.

Pension File of Maj. James Weston

The following is abstracted from his files:

The pension papers of James Weston[4], a pensioner of the Revolutionary
War, show that he enlisted first in January 1776, and again in January
1777. He then lived at New Braintree, Worcester County, Massachusetts.

On November 15, 1819, he executed a declaration for pension, in which
he says he is "64 years old on the 11th of June last." He was then
living at Ulysses, Tompkins Co., New York. His affidavit in the case
made May 23, 1822, at Ulysses, shows that he then owned land in
Clinton County.

At the Court of Common Pleas, at Plattsburg, New
York, on May 13, 1847, it was proved to the Court that James Weston
married at New Braintree, August 12, 1784, Sally Witherell, and that
the only heirs then were, as of May 23, 1822:

Elijah of Plattsburgh, New York;

Samuel of Chesterfield, New York;

Sophia, wife of Alanson Jones of Chesterfield, New York;

Harvey of Chesterfield, New York;

Aaron of Wilmington, New York;

Abner of Peru, New York;

Z. Newcomb of Peru, New York;

Sally, wife of William Ferris of Peru, New York;

Flavia, wife of Charles White of Chesterfield, New York;

Polly, wife of Johnathan Mace of AuSable, New York.

The papers also state that James Weston died at AuSable, New York, on
May 22, 1840, and that his wife, Sally, died at the same place, 12
hours after her husband.[5]

Based on James' affidavit, researchers may also wish to check sources in Ulysses, Tompkins County. Prior to 1817, Tompkins Co. was part of Seneca County, New York. A quick search at Tompkins Co. GenWeb turned up a James Weston who was "constable and collector" of Ulysses in April 1795. James could have first moved to Ulysses, then to AuSable, then back to Ulysses. Maj. James Weston's pension papers are available through the NARA.

If you believe you are one of James Weston's descendants, you may request a free lookup at the DAR web site.

Third Generation

Abner WESTON6 (James5, James4, Zachariah3, Edmund2, Edmund1) was born[1] 1796 in Peru, NY. (Note: According to the 1860 U.S. Federal Census, Abner was born in Vermont.) He died 13 Feb 1866 in Keeseville, Clinton Co., NY[6] and was buried about 16 Feb 1866 in Keeseville, Clinton Co., NY.

The Pension Papers of James Weston[3] filed in 1822 in Ulysses, Tompkins Co., New York, state that Abner Weston of Peru, New York, was one of his children.

Abner was a farmer in Clinton County. He also owned a General Store.
His home was in Peru. As he approached middle age, he gave up the
store and moved to Keeseville. Consumption had begun sapping his
strength. It's also said he "built" the Methodist Church in Peru or Keeseville.[5]

Abner married Cynthia HUNT about 1818 in Keeseville, NY. Cynthia was born 1798 in New Hampshire or Vermont. (Note: The 1860 U.S. Federal Census states she was born in Vermont.) She died 10 Jul 1871 in Keeseville, Clinton Co., NY.

Residing with the Weston family in 1860 was Hannah Cemene, b. abt 1825 in Ireland.

Cynthia and Abner had the following children:

+ F Lucia Wells WESTON was born 3 Sep 1827 and died 24 Jul 1867.

F Almira WESTON was born in Peru, Clinton Co., NY. Almira married Embry E. HOAG. He was a merchant.

+ M Milton Lorenzo WESTON was born 1820 and died 8 Apr 1879.

69 F Caroline WESTON. Caroline married Rev. Robert L. CONANT.

+ M Frederick Charles WESTON was born 13 Mar 1824 and died 27 Jul 1886.

F Mary WESTON was born in Peru, Clinton Co., NY. She died in Peru/Keeseville, NY. She was 23.

F Lurancy J. WESTON was born in Peru, Clinton Co., NY.
Lurancy married (1) Lot E. PLATT about 1845 in Clinton Co., NY. Lurancy also married (2) Mr. WILLIAMS after 1884 in Beaver Dam, WI.

M Monroe WESTON was born in Peru, Clinton Co., NY. He died in Peru/Keeseville, NY. He was 21 years old and a student at the time of his death.

F Jane WESTON was born in Peru, Clinton Co., NY. She died in Peru/Keeseville, NY. She was twenty.

F Sarah WESTON, b 1837, Peru, NY.

F Helen WESTON, b. 1839 in Peru, Clinton Co., NY. She died before 1884 in West. Helen married Charles H. SABIN in New York.

Fourth Generation

Lucia Wells WESTON7 (Abner6, James5, James4, Zachariah3, Edmund2, Edmund1) was born 3 Sep 1827 in Keeseville/Peru, NY. She died 24 Jul 1867 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI[7, 8].

She was probably named for her mother's sister, Lucia Hunt Wells.
Lucia married Bradford SMITH, Jr., on 9 Mar 1853 in Queens, NY. Bradford, was born 15 Nov 1820 in Moira, Franklin Co., NY. He died 6 Sep 1906 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI and was buried 9 Sep 1906 in Detroit.

It appears that Lucia and Bradford named one of their sons for Lucia's brother, Frederick Charles Weston, and another for her father.

Lucia and Bradford had the following children[9]:

F Mary Lucia SMITH was born 6 Dec 1855 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. She died 6 Dec 1855 in Detroit and was buried 9 Dec 1855 in Detroit.

M A(bner) Weston SMITH was born 10 Jun 1857 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI.

F Sarah L. SMITH was born 5 Aug 1859 in Detroit, Wayne Co., MI. She died 11 Mar 1867 in Detroit and was buried 14 Mar 1867 in Detroit.

+ M Frederick Bradford SMITH was born 13 Dec 1863 and died 16 Nov 1929.

Joseph Wheat SMITH was born 10 Jun 1865 and died 1924.


1. The descendants of Edmund Weston of Duxbury, Massachusetts, for five generations, by Thomas Weston, pp 7 - 15.

2. New Braintree Deaths, p. 160.

3. Pension file of Maj. James Weston.

4. Massachusetts Town Birth Records

5. Genealogy files of Frederick Smith, Detroit, Michigan.

6. Will and Clinton Co., New York Probate File of Abner Weston.

7. Fort Street Presbyterian Church Records, Detroit, Michigan.

8. Detroit News Obituary for Bradford Smith, Sept. 1906.

9. U.S. Federal Census of 1870.

If you believe you are one of James Weston's descendants, you may request a free lookup at the DAR web site.

©2002 Margaret L. Smith. All rights reserved.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Three Generations of Edmund Weston Family

First Generation

1. Edmund, Sr. WESTON1 was born 1605 in England. He died after 2 Feb 1686 in probably Duxbury. His will was made in "Duxboro."

He was said to be a thrasher of grain when he lived in England.

In 1652, he was a surveyor of highways.

His name was frequently connected with public matters in town.

In the "History of Duxbury," Winsor says of Edmund Weston, " . . . as the enterprising ancestor of an enterprising family whose descendants have been numerous and most of them have resided in town."

Edmund, married prob. a DELANO about 1650 probably in Duxbury.

They had the following children:

+ 2 M i. Edmond WESTON was born 1660 and died 23 Sep 1727, m. Rebecca Soule.

3 M ii. John WESTON.

4 M iii. Elnathan WESTON, m. Jane, a widow. They had three daughters, Mary m. Joseph Simons; Sary m. John Chandler; and Abigail.

5 F iv. Mary WESTON, m. John DELANO

Second Generation

2. Edmund WESTON2 (Edmund, Sr.1) was born 1660 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA. He died 23 Sep 1727 in Plympton, intestate.

Edmund married Rebecca SOULERef:1,2 on 13 Dec 1688 in Plymouth. Rebecca was born 4 Oct 1659 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA. Rebecca was the daughter of John Soule and Rebecca Simmons. She died 18 Nov 1732 in Plympton, MA.

They had the following children:

+ 5 M i. Zachariah, Sr., WESTON was born 16 Dec 1690 and died 27 Sep 1763.

+ 6 M ii. Nathan WESTON was born 8 Feb 1688/1689 and died 11 Oct 1754.

7 F iii. Rebecca WESTON was born 31 Jul 1693 in Plymouth. Rebecca married Thomas DARLING.

8 M iv. John WESTON was born 27 Jul 1695 in Plymouth. John married (1) Content JACKSON. John married (2) Deborah DELANO.

9 M v. Edmund (3) WESTON was born 21 Oct 1697 in Plymouth. Edmund married (1) Susannah JACKSON. Edmund married (2) Elizabeth SMITH.

10 M vi. Benjamin WESTON was born 16 Nov 1701 in Plymouth. Benjamin married (1) Hannah COMER. Benjamin married (2) Phillimona JONES. Benjamin married (3) Mercy S. LOBELL.

Third Generation

5. Zachariah, WESTON3 (Edmund2, Edmund1) was born 16 Dec 1690 in Plymouth, Plymouth Co., MA. He died 27 Sep 1763 in Plympton.

Zachariah, married Mehitable SHAW on 20 Jun 1717 in Plympton, MA. Mehitable was born 12 Jan 1693/1694 in Plympton, Plymouth Co., MA. She died after 1763 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

They had the following children:

+ 11 M i. James WESTON was born 31 Oct 1723 and died 26 Oct 1786.

12 M ii. Jonathan WESTON was born 1717.

13 M vi. Zachariah (2) WESTON, Jr., was born 1719 in Middleboro. He died before 1728 in Middleboro.

14 F iii. Mehitable WESTON was born before 1727.

+ 15 M iv. Zachariah(2) WESTON was born 21 Dec 1728 and died 9 Apr 1794.

16 F v. Rebecca WESTON was born after 1729.


1. Weston Genealogy, pp 7 - 15.

2. New Braintree Deaths, p. 160.

If you believe you are one of James Weston's descendants, you may request a free lookup at the DAR web site.

©2002 Margaret L. Smith. All rights reserved.

George Soule and Mary Becket

George Soule and Mary Bucket have numerous descendants in North America and around the world. This lineage focuses only on the Soule-Weston line to the family of Lucia Weston Smith, Detroit, Michigan. Details of other branches of this family can be found through the Society of Mayflower Descendants, the New England Genealogical and Historical Society, and various other publications.

First Generation

1. George (1) SOULE[1,2] was born about 1594 in England. He died before 22 Jan 1679 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA.

George immigrated 1620 to England on the Mayflower, as an indentured servant to the Edward Winslow family. He was the children's tutor. Although this implies he was of lesser status to Winslow, the families were closely associated in many matters. This friendship and intermarriage continued even to descendants living in Detroit several hundred years after they set sail in 1620.
George Soule was one of the signers of the Mayflower Compact.

George married Mary BUCKET (BECKET) before 1626 in Plymouth. At the first division of cattle, George and Mary were married, with Zachariah born at that time. Mary was born 17 Jan 1599/1600 in England. She died Dec 1676 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA.

He made is will 11 Aug 1677 in Duxbury. A codicil was made 20 Sep 1677. The codicil implored his son, John, to not harass his sister, Patience, and her family when they inherit the lands he bequeathed Patience. If John did harass his sister, he would lose his inheritance, she would get all of John's inheritance and be named the executrix of her father's estate. The will and codicil were witnessed by Nathaniel Thomas and Deborah Thomas.

Mary immigrated 1623 to England on the Fortune.

George and Mary had the following children:

2 M i. Zachariah SOULE was born before 22 May 1627 in Plymouth.

+ 3 M ii. John SOULE was born 1632 and died 14 Nov 1707.

4 M iii. Nathaniel SOULE was born about 1637 in Plymouth.

5 M iv. George(2) SOULE was born about 1639 in Plymouth Co., MA.

6 F v. Susanna SOULE was born about 1642 in Plymouth Co., MA.

7 F vi. Mary SOULE was born about 1644 in Plymouth Co., MA.

8 F vii. Elizabeth SOULE was born about 1648 in Plymouth Co., MA.

9 F viii. Patience SOULE was born about 1648 in Plymouth Co., MA.

10 M ix. Benjamin SOULE was born about 1651 in Plymouth Co., MA. He died 26 Mar 1676.

First Generation

3. John SOULE2 (George1) was born 1632 in Plymouth Co., MA. He died 14 Nov 1707 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA.

John married (1) Rebecca SIMMONS, daughter of Moses(2) SIMMONS and Sarah (1) CHANDLER, about 1654 in Duxbury. Rebecca was born 1635 in Duxbury. She died 1666 in Duxbury.John also married (2) Esther NASH SAMPSONRef:3 about 1678 in probably Duxbury. Esther was born 6 Mar 1639/1640 in probably Duxbury. She died 12 Sep 1735 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA.

John and Rebecca had the following children:

+ 11 F i. Rebecca SOULE was born 4 Oct 1659 and died 18 Nov 1732.

12 M ii. James SOULE was born 4 Oct 1659 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA. He died 27 Aug 1744 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA and was buried 30 Aug 1744 in Middleboro.

13 F iii. Sarah SOULE was born about 1660 in Duxbury, MA. She died after 16 Mar 1689/1690.

14 F iv. Rachel SOULE was born about 1663 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA. She died 18 Sep 1727 in Middleboro, Plymouth Co., MA.

15 M v. Aaron SOULE was born about 1664 in Duxbury. He died after 24 Mar 1751/1752 in possibly Pembroke.

16 M vi. Benjamin (2) SOULE was born about 1665 in Duxbury. He died 1 Dec 1729.

17 M vii. Moses SOULE was born about 1669 in Duxbury. He died about 9 May 1729.

18 M viii. Zachariah (2) SOULE was born about 1670 in Duxbury. He died before 16 Mar 1689/1690.

19 M ix. John(2) SOULE was born about 1675 in Duxbury. He died 19 May 1743 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA.

John and Esther had the following children:

20 M x. Joseph SOULE was born 31 Jul 1679 in Duxbury. He died 11 Jul 1763 in Duxbury.

21 M xi. Josiah SOULE was born 31 Jul 1679 in Duxbury. He died 25 Jan 1764.

22 M xii. Joshua SOULE was born 12 Oct 1681 in Duxbury.

Third Generation

11. F Rebecca Soule3 (John2, George1) was born 3 Oct 1659 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA. She died 18 Nov 1732 in Plympton, MA.

Rebecca married Edmund WESTONRef:1,2 on 13 Dec 1688 in Plymouth. He was born 1660 in Duxbury, Plymouth Co., MA. Edmund died 23 Sep 1727 in Plympton, intestate.

Edmund and Rebecca had the following children:

23. + M i. Zachariah, Sr., WESTON was born 16 Dec 1690 and died 27 Sep 1763.

24. + M ii. Nathan WESTON was born 8 Feb 1688/1689 and died 11 Oct 1754.

25. F iii. Rebecca WESTON[3] was born 31 Jul 1693 in Plymouth.Rebecca married Thomas DARLING.

26. M iv. John WESTONRef:4 was born 27 Jul 1695 in Plymouth.John married (1) Content JACKSON.John also married (2) Deborah DELANO.

27. M v. Edmund (3) WESTON was born 21 Oct 1697 in Plymouth. Edmund married (1) Susannah JACKSON. Edmund also married (2) Elizabeth SMITH.

28. M vi. Benjamin WESTON was born 16 Nov 1701 in Plymouth. Benjamin married (1) Hannah COMER. Benjamin also married (2) Phillimona JONES. Benjamin married (3) Mercy S. LOBELL.


The Desperate Crossing: The Untold Story of the Mayflower (1996 - The History Channel).

Ancestry Sources

The following are good sources for researchers. Searching the databases is free, but accessing the images does require a subscription. There are free trials available.

Mayflower Births & Deaths, Vol. I

Contains records for the descendants of these Pilgrims: John Alden; Isaac Allerton; John Billington; William Bradford; William Brewster; Peter Brown; James Chilton; Francis Cooke; Edward Doty/Doten; Francis Eaton; Edward Fuller; Samuel Fuller. An index of names found in the records is provided.

Mayflower Births & Deaths, Vol. II

Contains records for the descendants of these Pilgrims: Stephen Hopkins; John Howland; Richard More; Degory Priest; Thomas Rogers; Henry Samson; George Soule; Myles Standish; Richard Warren; William White; Edward Winslow. An index of names found in the records is provided.

Mayflower Marriages

. Contains marriage records for the descendants of these Pilgrims: John Alden; Isaac Allerton; John Billington; William Bradford; William Brewster; Peter Brown; James Chilton; Francis Cooke; Edward Doty/Doten; Francis Eaton; Edward Fuller; Samuel Fuller; Stephen Hopkins; John Howland; Richard More; Degory Priest; Thomas Rogers Henry Samson; George Soule; Myles Standish; Richard Warren; William White; Edward Winslow. The publication also includes marriages between families and an index of names published in the book.

Ancestry UK also provides databases for United States Birth, Marriage, & Death Records
, as well as Canadian Birth, Marriage, & Death Records
. 14 Day FREE trial


Plymouth Plantation 1620 - 1647 by William Bradford | U.S. |

Good Newes from New England by Edward Winslow | U.S. |

Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War by Nathan Philbrick | U.S. |

A Little Commonwealth: Family Life in Plymouth Colony by John Demos | U.S. |

The Mayflower & the Pilgrims' New World
B Nathan Philbrick
Publ. Sept. 4, 2008
Ages 9-12

From the Publisher: "In stunning prose, Nathaniel Philbrick evokes the drama of the voyage of the Mayflower and the eerie emptiness of coastal Massachusetts that greeted the Pilgrims. He tells how the settlers were able to gain the friendship of many powerful Native American leaders, including the charismatic Massasoit, and how they worked together to maintain peace. But the promise of the First Thanksgiving was broken with the next generation of leaders. Fifty-six years after the Mayflower’s landing, a horrifying conflict, known today as King Philip’s war, nearly wiped out the colonists and Natives alike, and forever altered the new country.

"The Mayflower and the Pilgrims’ New World is the perfect introduction for young readers to this epic story, at once tragic and heroic. Adapted specially for middle-grade readers, this book features a wealth of supplemental materials such as new maps and photographs, a time line, and a list of characters for added comprehension and accessibility.

The Mayflower & the Pilgrims' New World by Nathan Philbrick | U.S. |

Related Websites

The Society of Mayflower Descendants in America

This hereditary organization is comprised of millions of individuals who can trace their ancestry back to one or more passengers on the Mayflower. The website includes information about membership. The group's mission extends beyond genealogy into educational outreach as they attempt to present the facts about the Pilgrims, who were not Puritans, but were separatists, hoping to break free from the Anglican Church. Their "Mayflower Families" project compiles the lineages of each passenger known to have descendants. Each study of these genealogies is available for purchase at the website. Other reference materials are also available. There is a children's site, as well.

Canadian Society of Mayflower Descendants

The site includes background on the organization of the group, how William Bradford's journal was rediscovered, membership information, a list of deaths after 1621, and related articles.

Soule Kindred in America

This familial organization unites descendants of George Soule and Mary Becket. A family reunion is held every year in a different city. Membership includes a detailed newsletter that connects Soule researchers.

Plimouth Plantation

The official website for the historical village. It includes upcoming events, images, and facts about daily life of the colonists.

Caleb Johnson's

This extensive website was one of the first on the Internet focusing on the Mayflower passengers, their lives, and descendants. It remains one of the best general resources, with lists of passengers, documents, and information on Johnson's recent publications.

©2002 Margaret L. Smith. All rights reserved.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Native American Genealogy Research Primer

Begin by organizing your research. Check family records, including vital records, photograph albums, journals, Bibles, and letters. Write down as much as you know, including names of extended family members (aunts, cousins, in-laws). Sometimes, a big break-through isn't with the name you're researching, but comes from finding a relative. Record where they lived. Next, decide which branch of your family tree you want to research. If you find information on other lines, record those, but stick to researching the branch you have chosen to trace. Look for a specific record or event, such as the death or marriage of an individual. If you are just beginning and have little background information, you may wish to start with a census, particularly the Indian Censuses.

Research Steps for Getting Started
  • Start with yourself and work back to the Native American ancestor you're researching.
  • Record pertinent dates, including births, deaths, and marriages.
  • Include locations each person lived. If you have the date of any move, record it and the names of family members who moved.
  • Choose just one ancestor to research.
  • When you get to your Native American ancestor, determine their tribe.
  • Study the tribal history to get a feel for their culture and where they lived.
  • Learn what their migratory patterns were, if any.
  • Study naming patterns.
  • Some tribes were connected to specific churches and government agencies. Not all tribes have the same records. It is, therefore, imperative that you have a basic understanding of how your tribe was documented.
  • Choose a time period, such as 1870-1875. Concentrate on locating them and related documents for those years, only. Move on once you've found records or have determined that they aren't available. There may be years when no documentation of a Native American exists.
  • Some tribes, such as the Ojibwa, are considered citizens of both the United States and Canada. Therefore, understanding recordkeeping in both nations is useful.

Finding the Records of a Life

There are two major repositories that are especially helpful to a native peoples researcher in the United States. One is the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The other is the LDS, either their online resources or libraries.

You may also wish to check your local library for the materials they have. Most have a family history section with some records stored. They may also assist you in interlibrary loans on tribal histories, family and town histories, as well as census and enumeration materials from the NARA. Likewise, state and regional historical societies often have local tribal histories.

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)

The NARA hosts regular genealogy workshops in Washington, D. C., and in its 13 regional facilities. Topics include Native American research. Click here to check the calendar.

The NARA lists the records they have available for research. These include Indian Bounty Land Applications, Indian Census Rolls from 1885 - 1940, the Dawes Commission, including an article on the enrollment of the Creeks, and an Index to the Final Rolls of Citizens and Freedmen of the Five Civilized Tribes in Indian Territory (Dawes). There are many more tools for Native American researchers, including archival photographs.

The Dawes Commission and the Allotment of the Five Civilized Tribes was an act of Congress signed into law by President Garfield in 1893. Beginning in 1898, individuals were granted citizenship in one of five tribes based on specific criteria. The tribes involved were Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, Seminole, Cherokee. The categories for enrollment as citizens of a particular tribe were:
  • Citizens by Blood.
  • Citizens by Marriage
  • New Born Citizens by Blood.
  • Minor Citizens by Blood.
  • Freedmen, who were slaves once owned by Indians.
  • New Born Freedmen.
  • Minor Freedmen.

Additionally, Delaware tribal members adopted by Cherokee were admitted to the Cherokee nation under another category. Modifications to the criteria were made in 1905 and 1906. Enrollments were recorded on various types of cards, which have been preserved on microfilm. The microfilms are available through the NARA.

Click here to browse the NARA's index of records specific to native peoples.

Ancestry's Dawes Commission Index, 1896
and Dawes Commission Index, 1898-1914
are by subscription. Try them with Free Trial
before you subscribe.

I do recommend the free Ancestry article, The Dawes Commission: Getting Organized

Federal Census and Enumerations

In addition to population counts and studies available at the Native American Census Project, other censuses are of particular use to genealogists.

  • 1930 Census.
    Native Americans were enumerated with the rest of the nation. However, instead of listing father's nation of birth, the census taker asked the percentage of father's native ancestry. A mother's tribe replaced her country of birth.

Later Day Saints Resources

We highly recommend you conduct an online search of LDS, both for the surname and for records. Check reference materials and who else is researching your lineage. Contact your local LDS temple to see if they have a library or where the nearest facility is. Ask how to go about using the facility and ordering records, microfilms, and microfiche.

There are two areas of the LDS web site that should be utilized by Native American researchers. In Subject Search, search by tribe or Indians of North America using the state where your ancestor lived. Also search in the Locality Search under the United States - Native Races or under the state of origin - Native Races.

A Growing Resource

The USGenWeb's Native American Census Project aims to provide data online for free. Each section explains what will be found. Part of the NARA's Dawes Commission microfilms are now online. Although not all materials have yet been transcribed, it is well worth browsing through. If you have to time to volunteer to work on this project, it will be appreciated.

Any family historian should check the USGenWeb for the numerous free online databases. Browse by state. Check the archives for specific record types. Read and post on the message boards.


The Dawes Commission and the Allotment of the Five Civilized Tribes, 1893-1914 was authorized by President Garfield in 1893. The report includes birth and death records, as well as other significant documentation of native people. The publication contains an explanation of how to organize your research to make the most effective use of this important source for those of Native American ancestry.

Indian Tribes of North America, by John R. Swanton, is considered a definitive study and is recommended by experts in the area of Native American research.

Atlas of the North American Indian, by Carl Waldman, is a crash course on Native American history, including pre-historic times. Illustrated with 110 maps.

More Tips

Local histories, diaries, and town records often recorded the names of Indians in their areas.

During the 1600s and 1700s, Native Americans were sometimes enslaved in both the South and New England. Slave sales, slave owners wills and journals may offer clues.

Native Americans moved back and forth between Canada and the United States. You may wish to check Canadian records, if you believe this may be the case in your family tree.

Check publications of the DAR and Society of Mayflower Descendants. Both have lineages that include documented Native Americans. Furthermore, articles in their magazines sometimes look at the relationship between settlers and tribes. In spite of past insensitivites and misunderstandings, both organizations are committed to providing a true and accurate glimpse at early American life and culture. Both offer college scholarships for individuals of Native American ancestry. The DAR supports schools committed to educating impoverished Native American children. Both can be a source of much needed information for researchers.

Explore local history organizations, including the New England Historic and Genealogical Society.

Every United States citizen has a Social Security Number. The death indexes are a tremendous resource for every genealogist. Social Security Death Index
is a free database, regularly updated.

RootsWeb General Search
is another free and often useful tool, especially for those just starting their family tree.

Indian Census Collection

Native American Genealogy Links

American Indian Tribal Directory
American Indian Heritage Foundation (AIHF) lists each nation and its location.

Civil War in Indian Territory
Information about Joseph G. Moore, who served in the Choctaw Chickasaw Mounted Rifles. Also includes names and details about other Native Americans who fought either for the Union or Confederacy.

Cyndi's List - Native American
Links to Aboriginal and Native American resources.

Genealogy - Tracing Roots
Native Web Resources large list of sites devoted to Native American and First Nations' heritage, including African Natives.

Index of Native American Genealogy Resources on the Internet
List of possible research sites to find your ancestors. Native American orientation.

Indian History, Bigoraphy and Genealogy - Pertaining to the Good Sachem Massasoit fo the Wampanoag Tribe and His Descendants with Appendix
By Ebenezer Pierce. This is a free online transcription of this tome, first published in 1878.

Native American Genealogy
State Historical Society of Missouri explains in detail some resources for those researcing their tribal roots.

Native Americans and African Americans, 1780-1820 in Deerfield, MA, and Surrounding Areas
This is the essay supporting a teachers' lesson plan. However, it is pertinient to New England researchers of Native and African American heritage.

Native Americans in the Civil War
A small collection of articles and biographies.

Native American Genealogy
Comprehensive site with numerous awards. Principle focus is on Cherokee nation, but others as well. Updated frequently.

Native American Indian Genealogy Webring Homepage
Search the web using this web ring devoted to Native American family history. Instructions for adding personal pages to the web ring.

Native American Resources at the NARA
An index of relevant articles and records available online or at the National Archives and Records Administration facilities.

Native American - USGenWeb Census Project
A work in progress, this site is attempting to make available census data and enumerations pertaining to Native Americans.

New England Indians
This site index leads researchers to significant writings about the Native Americans of the region.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Surviving The Salem Witch Trials - The Bishop Family

Much has been written about the Salem Witch Trials, that infamous time in American history. The fear of the occult and the subsequent trials were commonplace during the 17th century. How else could the people explain weird weather, earthquakes (one of which occurred around 1690 in Essex Co., MA, and is recorded in the History of Amesbury, Massachusetts), lunar and solar eclipses, and strange illnesses. Mankind had not yet achieved a scientific basis for understanding natural phenomenom or disease.

I read in a passage about my ancestor, Samuel Dunham, that he was ex-communicated a couple of times. One time was around 1690 for saying, "a pox upon your house and puck," to one of his neighbors. Fortunately, the curse wasn't taken seriously. Rev. Mathers attributed it to Old Sam's alcoholism, stating in his journal, "Sam Dunham is an old drunk."

Another of my ancestors, Joseph Ballard of North Andover, however, blamed witchcraft for his wife's death from female problems. His accusation sparked the Andover branch of the 1692 witch hunt. Ballard brought the "afflicted girls" to the village for examination in July of that year. One of those accused, Nehemiah Abbott, was a cousin to the Abbotts that his granddaughter would marry a few years later.

The panic that followed the accusations in northeastern Massachusetts forever changed America's perception of the judicial system and religion's role in government. It also marked the end of Puritanism as a major religious force.

Of the many men and women accused, the Bishops were one that moved on, creating a new life for themselves in a different part of colonial Massachusetts. Ironically, generations later, descendants of Joseph Ballard and the Bishops would become related through marriage.

The Bishops

Some years ago, the Carpenter Museum of Rehoboth, Massachusetts, published a biography of Edward and Sarah Bishop in its newsletter. We use that as reference, together with web sites about the Salem Witch Trials to provide you with an account of the Bishop family's life after the witch trials and the events.

Edward Bishop operated an inn in Salem Village, now known as Danvers. He had problems with the law in 1685, twice being charged with running an unlicensed establishment, profaning the sabbath, selling liquor illegally, and abusing swine. They were not well liked by the Puritan community. The anomosity between the two factions peaked on April 21, 1692, when a group of citizens filed complaints of witchcraft against nine of their neighbors, including Edward Bishop, his wife Sarah Bishop, and Sarah's step-mother, Sarah Averill Wildes. They were arrested and imprisoned.

On July 1, 1692, Edward and Sarah Bishop testified against Mary Warren, also imprisoned. Why they did so is a mystery. However, if they had hoped they would be granted a lesser sentence or be freed, their plan didn't succeed.

Both Sarahs went on trial July 2. Their accuser was the Bishop family minister, Rev. John Hale of Beverly. Mrs. Wildes was accused of bewitching her two step-sons in 1676, resulting in their deaths. She was convicted and hanged on July 19th. Sarah Bishop remained in jail.

In August 1692, Edward and Sarah escaped to New York. Sarah's sister Phoebe Wildes Day, was accused and arrested in September.

The Bishops remained in New York until the spring of 1693, at which time they moved to Rehoboth, Massachusetts, near Providence, Rhode Island. The center of Rehoboth at that time is now Rumford, Rhode Island. Fifty years earlier, a schism within the Puritan church at Hingham drove many to Rehoboth. Perhaps the Bishops felt the residents of that place would be more tolerant of them, in spite of the family's lack of commitment to the Puritan church and of their notorious involvement in the witchcraft trials. In any case, the Bishop family prospered.

By 1706, Edward Bishop had received a license to serve strong drinks and established an inn in what is now East Providence. He purchased a good deal of land and served as a juror in 1705. The innkeeper was not without his legal problems, though. In 1707, he lost his license to serve liquor. Evidently, Bishop corrected the problem as it was reissued in 1708.

Bristol County Probate Court References

On May 11, 1711, Edward Bishop made a will, which was probated May 28 of that year. It was witnessed by Deacon Samuel Newman, Moses Read, and Daniel Carpenter.

Edward named the following individuals in his will:
  • Sarah Bishop: Wife. Executor.
  • Edward Bishop: Eldest son.
  • Samuel Bishop: Son.
  • William Bishop: Son.
  • Jonathan Bishop: Son.
  • Joseph Bishop: Son.
  • David Bishop: Son.
  • Benjamin Bishop: Son, adding, "if he lives to come home."
  • John Bishop: Son.
  • Ebenezer Bishop: Son.
  • Priscilla Day: Daughter.
  • Sarah Jorden: Daughter.
  • Samuel Day: Son-in-law.
  • Edward Day: Grandson, under age 21.
  • John Day: Grandson, under age 21.

Sarah Bishop died in 1725. Bristol County Probate Records Vol. 5, p. 157, records that the Court appointed Samuel Bishop of Attleboro the administrator of his late mother's estate. She died intestate. The appointment was dated September 4, 1725.

Bristol County Probate Records, Vol. 5, pp 224-225, references the division of the estate of Mrs. Sarah Bishop of Rehoboth on February 15, 1725/6 between her children, namely:

  • Edward Bishop, eldest son.
  • Samuel Bishop, second son.
  • Jonathan Bishop, third son.
  • William Bishop, fourth son.
  • David Bishop, deceased.
  • John Bishop, fifth living son.
  • Ebenezer Bishop, sixth son.
  • Priscilla Day, daughter; wife of Samuel Day.
  • Sarah Jorden, youngest daughter.

The committee members were Abiah Carpenter, John Robinson, and Daniel Carpenter.

David Bishop died sometime before or near the time of his mother Sarah Bishop's passing. Bristol County, Massachusetts Probate Court records (Vol. 5, p 199) indicate that on December 21, 1725, Samuel Bishop of Attleboro was appointed guardian of the children of David Bishop, late of Ashford, Hartford County, Connecticut, namely:

  • Rachel Bishop, over age 14.
  • John Bishop, over age 14.
  • Ebenezer Bishop, over age 14.
  • David Bishop, over age 14.
  • Rebecca Bishop, under age 14.
  • Mary Bishop, under age 14.

Samuel Bishop died sometime between the writing of his will on June 6, 1726 and its probate filing on August 16, 1726. The witnesses were Isaac Bucklin, Ebenezer Robinson and Noah Carpenter. Samuel Bishop named the following as benefactors to his estate:
  • Mary Bishop: Wife.
  • Samuel Bishop: Son and Executor.
  • Daniel Bishop: Son.
  • Joseph Bishop: Son, under age 21.
  • Benjamin Bishop, "under age."
  • Edward Bishop.
  • Gideon Bishop.
  • Thomas Bishop, under age 16.
  • Mehetibel Carpenter, Daughter.
  • Mary Follet, Daughter.
  • Hannah Bishop, Daughter.
  • Sarah Bishop, Daughter.

Samuel Bishop directed his son and Executor, Samuel Bishop, to "...bind out my three sons namely: Benjamin, Edward & Gideon to good trades."

Samuel Bishop may be the same Samuel Bishop of Attleboro, Massachusetts, who wrote a will, dated October 19, 1739 and probated June 17, 1740. An Elizabeth Bishop was named his wife. Samuel Bishop, his son under age 21, and daughter Mehitbel Bishop were named, along with "...the Child unborn My Wife Now Goes With..." Witnesses were Timothy Tingley, Benjamin Day, and Noah Carpenter. Wife Elizabeth was named Executor by her husband. (Vol. 9, pp 434-436).

The source for the probate records is from Abstracts of Bristol County, Massachusetts Probate Records, 1687-1745 by Peter Rounds, available online at Ancestry. Free Trial

Abstracts of Bristol County, Massachusetts Probate Records, 1687-1745

Abstracts of Bristol County, Massachusetts Probate Records, 1745-1762

Salem Witches

A listing of over 200 individuals accused of witchcraft in New England betwen 1647 and 1697. These are only accusations that went to trial. Not limited to Salem, Massachusetts, some trails were in Andover and other Massachusetts towns, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Maine. Ancestry database. Name searches are free. Free Trial


Salem Witch Museum - The award-winning, official website for the institution located in Salem, Massachusetts. Includes location, telephone number, and information for group tours. An educational section is available for those wishing to learn more about the trials. Take the 1692 virtual tour.

Chronology of the Trials - Documents the events from the first accusations through the pardons. Visit the Memorial page for snapshots of the headstones dedicated in 1992.

University of Virginia - Salem Witch Trials - Comprehensive site with historical maps, legal proceedings, written observations of the hysteria, information on the Salem and Andover witch hunts.

Salem Witchcraft Trials - University of Missouri - Kansas Law School - Cronology, arrest and death warrants, complete witchcraft papers, and much more. Some educational material seems suitable for high school students.

Discovery School - Salem Witch Trials Lesson Plans (Grades 9-12).

Salem Witch Trials Books | U.S. | Canada (Francais) | UK | /

Friday, June 13, 2008

On the Trail of United Empire Loyalists, Tories, Hessians and British Soldiers in the American Revolution

You say your family fought in the American Revolution...on the other side? Finding military records or other documents that can provide you with key dates and data about your late-eighteenth century relatives can still be found.
Loyalists, Tories, British Soldiers
Perhaps to develop a sense of nationalism or possibly because the victors chose to distort things just a bit, American tradition would have you believe that there was almost no opposition of the Revolutionary War. In fact, there was strong opposition to the war of independence in parts of the 13 colonies. Hence, in every county, you were likely to find someone who was a "Loyalist."

United Empire Loyalists (UEM) were, understandably, labeled traitors by the new government. A tory was considered to be more or less sympathetic towards the Loyalist cause, but not necessarily a threat to the revolutionaries. Tories were, for the most part, treated better than their Loyalist neighbors, whose land and property were frequently confiscated by the representatives of the fledgling nation. However, Loyalist and Tory are generally interchangeable terms.

Loyalist ProfileRef:1

Nothing is hard and set, so there are exceptions to the basic make-up of those who chose to remain loyal to the British Crown. However, many were successful merchants, lawyers, or held a political office of some sort for the British government. Their religious persuasion tended to be Anglican (The Church of England), although there were many exceptions to this. British sympathies were strong in Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and North Carolina. They were strongest, however, in New York, New Jersey, and Georgia. They were least likely to be found in Massachusetts, Virginia, Maryland, and Connecticut. Large landowners of every socio-economic strata tended to feel it was in their best interest to be sympathetic to the Crown.

Some Loyalists immediately left for England, where they rallied King George III's subjects for their cause. Others went to Canada. But many, perhaps most, remained in America. Some fought their neighbors or agitated local Indians against the Americans. Others did little to support the troops who fought for their cause, often from fear that their property would be confiscated and sold.

The American Revolution, like its later counterpart, the American Civil War, was a war of the people that divided families and communities. When it became obvious that the war was a lost cause of the UEM, many left for Canada, the Bahamas, and other remaining English colonies. It's estimated that 80,000 fled the country during or immediately following the end of the American Revolutionary War.

Slave LoyalistsRef:2

Although there was a core group of Loyalists and Tories, they still needed to come up with enough soldiers to fight the Americans. To increase their forces, the British promised freedom to slaves who would fight for them. Around 30,000 slaves left in the hope of attaining freedom. The British did not keep their word. At the end of the War, this group of soldiers and laborers, treated little better than by their former masters, were taken to Nova Scotia with other Loyalists. There settlement, however, really never took. Although some stayed in Canada, many eventually moved to Sierra Leone. For more on this part of American History, please see Canada's Digital Collections' Black Loyalists.
Those Who Went to Canada

From the first days of the American Revolutionary War, many of those who believed that the British should continue their rule of the American colonies fled to Canada. Nova Scotia was their principal destination. This was especially true if they were forced from their homes by the American government. At the end of the war, facing even more repercussions for treason and living under a government they did not support, thousands more settled in Quebec and Ontario.

In 1784, the American government began allowing Loyalists to return to their homes without fear of repercussions. Some did return; others stayed. In fact, some Loyalists from Dutchess County, New York, chose to stay, but filed legal claims against their former neighbors for illegally confiscating and disposing of their land and goods.

Those Loyalists who remained in Canada were allotted land according to sex, marital status, and military rank. Officers received 300 - 1000 acres. Non-commissioned officers received 200 acres; their wives could apply for an additional 200. Private soldiers and heads of households who proclaimed they were Loyalists were granted 100 acres with each family allotted an additional 50 acres. Unmarried men received 50 acres. Land had to be occupied for one year before a deed was granted.

In 1789, it was decided that Loyalist children should be granted 200 acres. For the sons, it would be on their 21st birthday. Daughters recieved their allottment upon marriage or their 21st birthday, whichever came first. Hence, in the absence of vital records, a Loyalist child's birthdate can be determined, or at least estimated, by when they received their 200 acres. This is referred to as the Order in Council (OIC).

The NARA has images of the War from the British Viewpoint.

1. The Growth of the American Republic (Volume I) by Samuel Eliot Morison, Henry S. Commager, William E. Leuchtenburg. Publisher: Oxford Press.

2. Canada's Digital Collections' Black Loyalists.

American Revolutionary War Pensions

With Americans on the move during the years following the American Revolutionary War, the pension records of those who served in the fledgling nation's army, Marine Corps, navy, militia and as minutemen, are a wealth of information on the individual and his entire family.

The U. S. Congress passed legislation allowing pensions and bounty land warrants for some veterans in 1818. Later, it was extended to include their widows. Not everyone was, however, eligible.

On the application, most soldiers provided their place of residence, age and birthplace, and the names and ages of family residing with him, including wives, children, and grandchildren.

Widows making application had to prove they were married to the soldiers for whose pension they were requesting. This meant giving the date and place of their marriage, as well as the date and place of the soldier's death. Women were also required to give details of remarriages after the death of the soldier. If the marriage to a pensioner couldn't be proven, the widow's application was rejected. In the early years of America, people did not always keep certificates of marriage, even if they were provided to the newlyweds. Furthermore, many families moved more than once, leaving "unneccesaries" behind to lighten the load.

Recognizing this, the Federal government would allow original pages from family Bibles, journals and ledgers as proof when submitted with the Widow's Application. The preserved records, together with the application, any affidavits, and other documents the government requested while reviewing the pension and land bounty warrants applications provide us with unique, detailed glimpses of our ancestors that are seldom found before the Federal Census of 1850.

If you would like an actual copy of your ancestor's Revolutionary War service record, view the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) microfilms. M860 is the "General Index to Compiled Military Service Records of Revolutionary War Soldiers." This will lead you to the actual record on the NARA's microfilm series M881, "Compiled Service Records of Soldiers who Served in the American Army During the Revolutionary War. You can also request a hard copy using NATF Form 86 for a fee. It will take several weeks, possibly as long as two months, to receive this. Be sure to write "All Records" on all pages, the name of the individual whose records you're requesting, date each page, and keep a complete set of copies for your records.

If you believe that your ancestor is part of the DAR or SAR patriot indices, you may write them for a copy of their lineage papers. They will charge a fee. At present, the DAR does free lookups. Both the SAR and DAR are committed to helping descendants of soldiers, sailors, minutemen, and patriots of the Revolution. Your local chapter may be instrumental in helping track down your elusive ancestor, regardless of whether you join. Furthermore, they regularly hold genealogical workshops that can help you on your general research quest. To learn more about their services, please visit the DAR and SAR web sites, where you'll also find local chapters.

Pension applications are a great source of personal detail. For example, Rev. Joseph Wheat describes his adventures during the war in his Affidavit of 1819 & 1820. It also states that some of his grandchildren reside in his household. Likewise, James Weston's Affidavit of 1819 specifically states the place of his marriage to Sally Witherell, one of only three known records of Sally's life. The affidavit also names his children, including their spouses and residences, even though they were not living with him.

Check your local library, local genealogical society, or LDS Family History Library for a copy of "Index of Revolutionary War Pension Applications in the National Archives." This will assist you in determining whether or not your ancestor filed a claim for pension. You can also find these in the NARA's "Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Application Files, 1800-1906" found on the National Archive's microfilm series M804,2,670. You may also request the NARA print the record using NATF Form 85. Again, there is a fee and waiting time of several weeks or months. You can order just part of the file or the complete file. I personally recommend ordering the entire file to ensure you have all documentation. Search NARA for regional locations for viewing these records.