alycewilson (alycewilson) wrote,
alycewilson
alycewilson

My Husband's Mayflower Ancestors

I prepared this for my husband's family back in May, in honor of the 500th anniversary of the Mayflower landing. I'm sharing it here to help other genealogists and for those who are interested in American history.




According to my genealogical research, the descendants of Margaret Waterman can trace roots back to at least six Mayflower passengers who were biologically related, and three through non-biological parental links, all through the Wilcox line. In this document, I’ll provide details about those ancestors and their connection to the family.

Alden and Mullins Family

(1) William Mullins (1572-1620) m. (2) Alice (unknown)

William Mullins was born in about 1572 in Dorking, County Surrey, England, the son of John and Joan (Bridger) Mullins. He married Alice, whose surname is unknown, in about 1600, most likely in Surrey. They had four children: William, Sarah, Priscilla and Joseph. The two youngest children accompanied them on the journey to the New World.

The Mullins family home in Dorking, Surrey, England, still exists today. It is a four-unit building with four street-front shops and residences above.

William was a shoemaker, and in addition to his wife and two younger children, Priscilla and Joseph, he brought 250 shoes and 13 pairs on boots on the voyage.

William had the misfortune to die in the first harsh winter onboard the Mayflower, where the passengers endured illness and disease in Plymouth Harbor, before any shelters had been built on land. His original will has survived, written down on the day of his death by John Carver. In it, he mentions his wife Alice, children Priscilla and Joseph, and his children back in Dorking, William Mullins and Sarah Blunden.

Sadly, in addition to William, his wife Alice, as well as their son, Joseph, died during that first winter in Plymouth Colony, leaving Priscilla the only surviving member of the family in the New World.

Priscilla-John_Alden

One of many paintings of John & Priscilla Alden
(not painted during their lifetimes)



(3) John Alden (1598-1687) m. (4) Priscilla Mullins (Abt. 1602 - Abt. 1685)

John Alden was born in about 1598, and he was hired as a cooper at Southampton, though that does not necessarily mean he was a resident. There are two leading theories of his parentage. One is that he came from an Alden family living in Harwich in Essex, which was the home port of the ship Mayflower and home of its captain, Christopher Jones. Another theory involves a John Alden of Southampton who was the son of a fletcher, George Alden, who died in 1620, leaving John free to pursue employment overseas. A tax list from Southampton in 1602 lists George Alden and John’s future father-in-law, William Mullins. This theory goes further to suppose that the romance of the couple may have started in their home town of Southampton, if that is, indeed, where John was born. Neither theory has been decisively proven, however.

John was one of the signers of the Mayflower Compact, which governed the colony. When he died in 1687, he was the last surviving signer. In 1632, he was elected Governor’s Assistant (one of a small council of advisors to the governor), and he was regularly reelected to that office until 1640 and then again from 1650 to 1686. He also served as Deputy Governor on two occasions in the absence of the governor in 1665 and 1677. For three years, he also served as Treasurer of the colony, as well as on the Council of War, a committee determining matters relating to defense.

John was buried in the Myles Standish Burial Ground, and the approximate location of his and Priscilla's graves was marked with a memorial stone in 1930. The Alden house in Duxbury is preserved as an historical building.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote “The Courtship of Miles Standish” in 1858, a fictional tale some say is loosely based on family oral history. In the poem, John agrees to act as a go-between for Miles Standish, as Miles was attempting to win Priscilla’s hand, but then John is prompted by Priscilla to speak for himself instead.

The couple had the following children: Elizabeth (see below), John Alden Jr. (Abt. 1626-1701/02, Joseph (Abt. 1628-1696/7), Priscilla (1630 - After 1688), Jonathan (1632-1697), Sarah (1634 - Bef. 1688), Ruth (Abt. 1636-1674), Mary (1638 - After 1688), Rebecca (Abt. 1640- Abt. 1722), David (1642 to Abt. 1719).

John Alden Jr. was a survivor of the Salem Witch Trials and wrote an account of them. Essentially, he was accused as a witch but then broke out of jail and fled on horseback. He was later cleared by proclamation.


Elizabeth-Alden-Pabodie

A portrait of Elizabeth Alden Pabodie


Elizabeth Alden (1624-1717) m. William Pabodie (1620-1707)

Born in 1623, Elizabeth was the firstborn child of John and Priscilla Alden and allegedly the first female of European descent born in New England. She married William Pabodie (Peabody), a leader of Duxbury, Massachusetts, on December 26, 1644. They had all 13 of their children in that settlement, but Elizabeth moved to Little Compton, Rhode Island, in the 1680s. William served as town clerk there, succeeding Alexander Standish, and held other jobs at various times, as well, including yeoman, boatman, planter, and surveyor. When he became Duxbury town clerk, the town records having been destroyed in a fire, he very carefully recorded his own marriage and the births and marriages of his thirteen children. On May 31, 1717, Elizabeth died in Little Compton and is buried on Little Compton Common, which is officially called the Old Commons Burial Ground.

The couple had the following children: John (1645-1669), Elizabeth (1647-1677), Mary (1648-1727), Mercy (1649-1728), Martha (see below), Priscilla (1652-1653), Priscilla (1654-1724), Sarah (1656-1740), Ruth (1658-1725), Rebekah (1660-1702), William (1664-1744) and Lydia (1667-1747).


Martha Pabodie (1650-1712) m. Lt. William Fobes (1649-1712)

Martha Pabodie was born February 24, 1650 in Duxbury, Massachusetts and married, first, Samuel Seabury on November 10, 1660. With him, she had three children: Joseph (1678-1755), Martha (1679-1747), and a stillborn infant, possibly named Mark, before Samuel died on August 5, 1867.

Her second husband, Lt. William Fobes, had also been married previously, to Elizabeth Southworth, whose father opposed the match. With Elizabeth, William had two children: Phebe and Martha. Phebe would end up marrying Martha’s son Joseph from her first marriage. They were not, after all, biologically related.

According to the book “Elizabeth (Alden) Pabodie and Descendants” by Mary Langford (Taylor) Alden, William “was a man prominent in war and in peace, wealthy, of excellent standing in the community.”

Shockingly, among the items listed in the inventory of William’s estate were “an Negro woman and child,” and “two Indian boys with their clothing.” Those individuals were not mentioned in his will, as republished in Mary Alden’s book, so either she edited them out or they were not included. It’s possible they were indentured servants, not slaves, as indentured servitude was a common practice in colonial New England. Or there might be some other reason for those individuals being in the home, but the fact that they were listed in the inventory is concerning. However, it should be noted that the inventory of his daughter, Elizabeth (Fobes) Briggs does not include anything similar, so it does not seem to have been a practice handed down to his descendants.

Martha died on January 25, 1712 in Little Compton, Rhode Island, while William died later that year, on November 6, after losing their daughter Mary on February 14 and and Mercy on July 29. Upon noticing that both Martha and William, as well as two of their children, died in 1712, I did some historical research and discovered that in early 1712, there were 700 deaths in nearby Connecticut due to a “malignant distemper,” which included the deaths of 24 members of the General Assembly, according to an article by Ernest Caulfield, “The Pursuit of a Pestilence,” that appeared in “American Aquarian.” Without conclusive evidence, I can’t say for certain that these members of the Fobes family fell victim to that epidemic, but it is possible.

Martha and William had the following children: Elizabeth (see below), Constant (b. 1686), Mary (1689-1712) and Mercy (1694-1712).


Elizabeth Fobes (1683-1737) m. William Briggs (1671-1751)

Born in 1683 in Duxbury, Massachusetts, Elizabeth Fobes married William Briggs on June 10, 1708 in Little Compton, Rhode Island. Her husband, William, was the son of William and Elizabeth (Cooke) Briggs of Little Compton, Rhode Island. This Elizabeth Cooke was not descended from the Cookes who came over on the Mayflower but was a granddaughter of John Cooke, who was born in 1630 in Kent, England and came to Rhode Island before 1652.

Upon his death, William left his homestead to his eldest son William and divided up his farm between his younger children Mary and Lovet, and Fobes contested the will.

The couple had the following children: Judith (see below), Lovet (1712-1713), Elizabeth (1713-1753), William (1715-1769), Catherine (1717-1753), Sarah (1719-1750), Phebe (1721-1786), Mary (1723-1797), Fobes (1725-1753) and Lovel/Lovet (1727 - Aft. 1790).


Judith Briggs (1710-1765) m. Jeremiah Wilcox (1683-1768)

The individual who connected the Alden family to a major line of the Waterman family is Judith Briggs, who was born on May 7, 1710 in Little Compton, Rhode Island, and married Jeremiah Wilcox of Dartmouth, Massachusetts, on February 11, 1738.

This was Jeremiah’s second marriage, as he first married a Mary and had two daughters: Mary (1709-1757) and Sarah (1734-1752), both of whom are mentioned in his will.

Judith and Jeremiah had the following children: Samuel (1739-1805), William (1741-1794) and Benjamin (see below).


Benjamin Wilcox (1747-1816) m. Patience Tucker (1746-1816)

Benjamin Wilcox, born on September 24, 1747 in Westport, Massachusetts, lived in Dartmouth, Massachusetts and was a Captain in the Massachusetts militia, also known as the Minutemen, during the Revolutionary War, from 1776-77. He fought under Col. John Daggett and Col. Nathaniel Freeman, commanding a company that turned out at the Rhode Island Alarms.

On March 22, 1770, he married Patience Tucker, daughter of Henry and Elizabeth (Ricketson) Tucker. They had the following children: Jeremiah (1770-1853), Phebe (1771-1852), Willard (1773-1841), Patience (1776-1847) and Benjamin (see below).

As I mentioned in my previous write-up about the family, there is some conjecture over how many wives Benjamin had, due to confusion with another Benjamin Wilcox. Some sources say he had a second wife, Jeanna Galletin (1764-1845), whom he married in 1795. However, that information is based on the assumption that he then moved to Sparta, New York, with that family and was buried there. According to Benjamin’s death records, he died in Dartmouth, Massachusetts on March 1, 1816, just three months after his wife Patience, who died on January 13. In addition, his will confirms that his wife at the time he wrote the will, in 1816, was Patience. She apparently did not survive him for long, also dying in 1816.


Benjamin Wilcox (1785-1857) m. Patty Brownell (1794-1855)

Benjamin Jr. lived in the south part of Westport, Massachusetts, where he operated a homestead farm given to him by his father. He was a successful man and well-known citizen, living to 72, which was long-lived for the time.

His first wife was Sarah “Sally” Taber (1790-1820), with whom he had four children: Willard (1805-1871), Jeremiah (1809-1871), Patience T. (1811-1885) and Henry Tucker (1814-1887).

His second wife, Patty Brownell, was the daughter of Josiah and Deborah (Howland) Brownell. Patty was not descended from Mayflower passenger John Howland but, instead, from Henry Howland (1604-1671) of Fen Stanton, Huntingdonshire, England, who arrived in Plymouth, Massachusetts, in 1632 with his family.

Benjamin and Patty had the following children: Thomas Brownell (see below), Sarah (1825-1916) and Hodijah Baylies (1832-1913).

Thomas-Brownell-Wilcox-portrait

A photo of Thomas Brownell Wilcox


Thomas Brownell Wilcox (1821-1908) m. Jerusha Ryder Smith (1827-1904)

Born in Westport, Massachusetts, on November 12, 1821, Thomas Brownell Wilcox grew up working on the family farm. On September 4, 1849, he married Jerusha Ryder Smith, daughter of David and Jerusha (Ryder) Smith. Thomas entered business as a grocery clerk, later becoming a director of the Edison Electric Light Company, then the treasurer and director of the New Bedford Glass Company, keeping that position when it merged into the Mount Washington Glass Company. He was also a director of the Globe Street Railway Company and of several other companies. In addition, he was a well-respected philanthropist.

The couple had the following children: Sarah (see below), Susan Amelia (1852-1940), Mary Louisa (1854-1855), Thomas Brownell Jr. (1857-1925), Benjamin (1859-1917), Martha “Patty” (1864-1945) and Frank Stuart (1868-1942).


Sarah Wilcox (1850-1940) m. William Henry Waterman (1845-1925)

Sarah Wilcox was born on June 3, 1850 in New Bedford, Massachusetts. She married William Henry Waterman, son of Nehemiah and Rhoda Howland (Akin) Waterman, who was born December 16, 1845, also in New Bedford. The two were married on September 29, 1871 in Boston. Rhoda, like Patty Brownell, was descended from the same Henry Howland who came to Massachusetts from England in 1632, not from the Mayflower passenger John Howland. She and Patty were therefore distant cousins.

Paraphrasing from “Descendants of Robert Waterman of Marshfield, Massachusetts, Through Seven Generations” by D.L. Jacobus, William took the academic course of three years at Highland Military Academy, Worcester, Massachusetts, graduating July 13, 1866 with the rank of First Sergeant. He took a Select Course (Chemistry) at Brown University from September 1867 to the Spring of 1869. He was a salesman and later retail dealer in carpets, oil cloths, dry goods and small wares, retiring in 1886. He was an amateur geologist and mineralogist. In addition, Henry served on the Grand Jury (Clerk), 1896; Traverse Jury, March 1904 to May 1912; and candidate for the Common Council (Ward Four) for 1903, not elected, running as a Republican. He was active in many clubs and committees. He died on April 7, 1925 in Acushnet, Massachusetts.

The couple had the following child: Henry W. Waterman (see below).


Henry W. Waterman (1872-1932) m. Helen Clare Blake (1883-1963)


Henry was born May 2, 1872 in New Bedford, Massachusetts and on September 17, 1913, married Helen Clare Blake, daughter of Chauncey E. and Julia (Hand) Blake. According to “Descendants of Robert Waterman,” Henry graduated at East Greenwich (R.I.) Academy and (L.L.B.) at Boston University, but never practiced law. He lived in Boston, Provincetown and Hyannis, Massachusetts, and was a writer and newspaper man. He was employed by Boston's “Home Journal” from 1899 to 1903; “Boston Globe”; and “Cape Code Syndicate.” He was also the secretary of the Hyannis Board of Trade for two years; the secretary-treasurer of Republican Town Committee of Barnstable from 1924-26; and a charter member of the Boston Veteran Journalists Benevolent Association Inc. Henry died on February 28, 1932 in Barnstable, Massachusetts, outlived by 30 years by Helen, who died in 1963, also in Barnstable.

The couple had the following children: Margaret Waterman (1914-1962) and Sarah (1917-1955).


Cooke Family

Francis Cooke-portrait-face

A portrait of Francis Cooke


(5) Francis Cooke (1583-1663) m. Hester le Mahieu (1585-1666)


The following information is paraphrased from MayflowerHistory.com: Francis Cooke was born in about 1583, probably in England, perhaps from the Canterbury or Norwich areas. He married Hester le Mahieu on July 20, 1603 in Leiden, Holland. She was a French Walloon whose parents had initially fled to Canterbury, England. She left for Leiden sometime before 1603. Francis and Hester married in Leiden six years before the Pilgrim church made its move there. In 1606, the Cookes left Leiden and went to Norwich, County Norfolk, England for a while for unknown reasons. They returned to have their son, John, baptized at the French church in Leiden, somewhere between January and March 1607. In Holland, Cooke held the profession of wool-comber.

Francis and his eldest son, John, came on the Mayflower to Plymouth in 1620. He left behind Hester and his other children: Jane, Jacob, Elizabeth and Hester. After the colony was founded and better established, he sent for his wife and children, and they came to Plymouth on 1623 aboard the ship Anne.

A signer of the Mayflower Compact, the governing document of the colony, Francis lived out his life in Plymouth, keeping a fairly low profile until his death on April 7, 1663. He did serve on a number of minor committees, such as the committee to lay out the highways, and received some minor appointments to survey land. He also served on the jury on a number of occasions.

The couple had the following children: John (see below), Elizabeth (1611- Bef. 1627), Jane (1613-1666), Jacob (Abt. 1618-1675), Hester (1618-?) and Mary (1624-1714).


(6) John Cooke (1608-1695) m. Sarah Warren (1614-1696)

John Cooke, born in 1608 in Holland, came over on the Mayflower with his father Francis. On April 7, 1634, in Plymouth, Massachusetts, he married Sarah Warren, who was the daughter of another Mayflower passenger, (7) Richard Warren. Sarah’s parents, Richard and Elizabeth (Juatt or Jewett) Warren, had married before 1611. Elizabeth and Sarah did not come over on the Mayflower but joined Richard later. Richard died in Plymouth in 1628, while his wife outlived him by 50 years, dying in Plymouth on October 12, 1673.

John was Deputy to the General Court from 1638-1656 from Plymouth and then from Dartmouth in 1666, 1675, 1679, 1682 and 1686. He was also a military man and volunteered in 1637 for the Pequot War and became a captain.

At some point in the 1640s, John “fell into the error of Anabaptistry” and was cast out of the Plymouth Church. The Church record states, “This John Cooke although a shallow man became a cause of trouble and dissension in our Church and gave just occasion of their casting him out; so that Solomon’s words proved true in him that one sinner destroyeth much good.” He took up residence, then, in Dartmouth.

John died on November 23, 1695 in Dartmouth. Sarah died sometime after July 25, 1696, which is the last time she appears in a document, where she was called a “very ancient woman.”

The couple had the following children: Sarah (1635 - Aft. 1710), Elizabeth (see below), John (b. 1636, died young), Elizabeth (1638-1715), Hester (1650-?), Mary (1652-1693) and Mercy (1654-1733).


Elizabeth Cooke (1645-1715) m. Daniel Wilcox (Abt. 1634-1702)

Elizabeth was born on December 6, 1645 in Plymouth and married Daniel Wilcox on November 28, 1661. Daniel, whose family originally lived in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, relocated this line of the family to Tiverton, Rhode Island.

According to an article in “American Genealogist” (Vol. 19, 1942, p. 23-31), Daniel had an active and stormy career. Without an education, he signed his name with a mark, but because of his abilities, managed to acquire quite a large landed estate in eastern Rhode Island and southwest Massachusetts. This was in addition to inheriting his father’s land, Edward Wilcox. He was also on good terms with the local native people, the Pocasset. Benjamin Church, in his “History of the Indian Wars,” calls Daniel a man who “well understood the Indian language.”

Tiverton at the time was part of Massachusetts but had been founded mostly by Rhode Island men. Daniel led an opposition who were opposed to paying tithes to the Congregational minister in the town. There are also numerous records of him opposing the Massachusetts authority. This opposition verged on an armed opposition: he planted a cannon at his house, gathered his friends and defied the troop of horse, which was sent from Boston to restore order. For this, he was charged with a high misdemeanor and sentenced to pay a fine of 150 pounds.

Daniel predeceased Elizabeth, dying on July 2, 1702 in Tiverton. Elizabeth died on her birthday, December 6, 1715, also in Tiverton.

Most sources state that Margaret Waterman's ancestor, Samuel, and his older brother Daniel Jr. were actually the sons of Daniel’s first wife, whose name is unknown. However, the two boys were undoubtedly raised by Elizabeth Cooke and considered her to be their mother, so while there may not be a biological connection to Francis and John Cooke, there is a strong family connection. They would also have had a good chance to know John Cooke, whom they almost certainly considered a grandfather.

Children of Daniel and unknown first wife: Daniel Jr. (1656-1702) and Samuel (see below).

Children of Daniel and Elizabeth: Mary (1661/2-1735), Sarah (d. 1751), Stephen (Abt. 1668-1736), John (1670-1717), Thomas (1672-1712), Edward (1675-1718), Lydia (d. Aft. 1744), Susannah (Abt. 1680-1748).


Samuel Wilcox (1659- Bef. 1697) m. Mary Wood (1664-1721)

Samuel Wilcox was born in 1659 in Tiverton, Rhode Island, and in 1683 married Mary Wood, daughter of William and Martha (Earle) Wood of Dartmouth, who was born in about 1682. He died sometime before 1697.

After his death, Mary remarried twice: first to Thomas Mallett by 1697 and then to John Sanford. She died on December 15, 1721 in Newport, Rhode Island.

Children: Jeremiah (see below), William (1685-1705) and Mary (1688-1723).


Jeremiah Wilcox (1683-1768) m. Judith Briggs (1710-1763)

This Jeremiah and Judith are the same couple named above, in the write-up on the Alden-Mullins Family, with Judith Briggs a descendent of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins. So, as it turns out, both husband and wife were Mayflower descendants, albeit Jeremiah’s connection was not biological.

Hopkins Family

Stephen-Hopkins

A portrait of Stephen Hopkins


(8) Stephen Hopkins (1581-1644) m. Mary Kent


Stephen Hopkins made the journey with his second wife, whose maiden name was Elizabeth Fisher. His first wife, Mary, possibly the daughter of Robert and Joan (Machell) Kent of Hursley, county Hampshire, was the mother of (9) Giles Hopkins (see below). Elizabeth gave birth to a son, Oceanus, during the voyage to Massachusetts.

Born April 30, 1581 in Upper Clatford, Hampshire, England, Stephen was the son of John and Elizabeth (Williams) Hopkins. He married his first wife, Mary, prior to 1604, and his second wife, Elizabeth Fisher, on February 19, 1617 at St. Mary Matfellon, Whitechapel, Middlesex, England.

According to MayflowerHistory.com, the trip on the Mayflower was actually Stephen's second visit to the New World. He traveled on the ship Sea Venture on a voyage to Jamestown, Virginia, in 1609 as a minister’s clerk, but the ship wrecked in the “Isle of Devils” (Bermuda). Stranded on the island for ten months, the passengers and crew survived on turtles, birds and wild pigs. Six months into the castaway, Stephen and several others organized a mutiny against the current governor. The mutiny was discovered, and he was sentenced to death. However, he pleaded with sorrow and tears, especially about the fate of his wife and children, should he be executed, and was so convincing that he managed to get his sentence commuted.

The castaways finally built a small ship and sailed to Jamestown. While he was there, his wife Mary died and was buried in Hursley on May 9, 1613.

Stephen returned to England by 1617, when he married Elizabeth Fisher. Their first child was born in about 1618. In 1620, he brought his wife and his children Constance, Giles and Damaris on the Mayflower. As the only person who had previous experience in the New World, Stephen was invaluable with exploring missions and was used as an expert in contacts with the native people, even offering his house as a place to stay for Samoset when he walked into Plymouth to welcome the English. He served as an ambassador on many missions to meet with various native groups in the region.

In addition, Stephen was assistant to the governor through 1636. He volunteered for the Pequot War of 1637 but was never called to serve. By the late 1630s, he had run afoul of the Plymouth authorities by opening a shop where he served alcohol. Numerous instances are recorded of him being fined for selling alcohol and other alcohol-related offenses. His wife, Elizabeth, died on February 4, 1639. When Stephen died in 1644, he left a will asking to be buried next to his wife and naming his surviving children.

Children with Mary: Elizabeth (Abt. 1605 - Bef. 1620), Constance (Abt. 1606-1677) and Giles (see below).

Children with Elizabeth: Damaris (b. Abt. 1618 - Bef. 1627), Oceanus (1620- Bef. 1627), Caleb (Abt. 1622 - Bef. 1651), Elizabeth (Abt. 1624 - 1674), Damaris (Abt. 1627-1669), Deborah (Abt. 1628-1669) and Ruth (1630-1644).


(9) Giles Hopkins (1608-1677) m. Catherine Wheldon (1620-1689)


Margaret Waterman's final Mayflower ancestor (unless I come across some more) is Giles Hopkins, son of Stephen Hopkins and his first wife, Mary. Giles was baptized on January 30, 1607/08 in Hurley, Hampshire, England. He traveled on the Mayflower with his father, sister and stepmother, and his half-brother Oceanus was born aboard the ship during the crossing. On October 9, 1639, at Plymouth, he married Catherine (or Catorne) Whelden, daughter of Gabriel and Jane Whelden of Northampton, Massachusetts.

According to MayflowerHistory.com, by 1637, Giles volunteered to go with his father and brother Caleb to fight against the Pequot. By early 1639, he had moved from Plymouth to Yarmouth on Cape Cod. He and Catherine lived in the first house built by the English on Cape Cod south of Sandwich. Giles was made a surveyor of highways in 1643. He moved to Eastham on the Cape in 1644, where he also served as highway surveyor.

He died in 1690, not long after his wife Catherine, who died in 1689.

The couple had the following children: Mary (see below), Stephen (1642-1718), John (1643, died at 3 months old), Abigail (1644-1691), Deborah (1648-1727), Caleb (1650/51-1728), Ruth (1653-1738), Joshua (1657-1738), William (1660-1718) and Elizabeth (1664, died at 1 month old).


Mary Hopkins (1640-1700) m. Samuel Smith (1641-1696)

Mary Hopkins was born on November 5, 1640 in Yarmouth, Massachusetts. In January, 1664/5 she married Samuel Smith, who was born in 1641 in Hingham, Massachusetts. Samuel was a merchant who died in Eastham on March 20, 1696.

According to a write-up by another researcher at Ancestry.com, early in life, Samuel engaged in the whale and mackerel fishery business and was successful. Later, he was a trader and inn keeper in Eastham. At one time, he owned more than 1,000 acres of land, 400 acres being in the south side of Eastham and was known for many years afterwards as the Smith Purchase. He also bought two farms in Chatham, Massachusetts, one at Tom’s Neck, comprising a considerable part of the present village of Chatham. He held various local offices in Eastham and was described as a “resolute and determined man.”

The couple had the following children: a child born and died in 1667, Samuel (1668-1692), Mary (1669-1708), Joseph (1671-1692), John (see below), Grace (1676-1691), Deborah (1678-1691) and her twin Rebecca (1678- Bef. 1697).


John Smith (1673-1717) m. Bethiah Hopkins Snow (1672-1734)

John Smith was born May 26, 1673 and married Bethiah Hopkins Snow, the daughter of Stephen and Susanna (Dean) Snow, who was born on July 1, 1672 in Eastham. Stephen Snow’s mother was Constance (Hopkins) Snow, making Bethiah and John second cousins, sharing a great-grandfather in Stephen Hopkins.

John died before 1717, while Bethiah outlived him by nearly two decades, dying on July 31, 1734.

The couple had the following children: Samuel (see below), James (1695-1696), Deane (1698-1729), Mercy (1700 - Aft. 1748), Mary (Abt. 1702-1767), John (1703-1767), Stephen (Abt. 1706-1766), Bethia (Abt. 1708-?), David (1711-1734) and Seth (1713-1787).


Samuel Smith (1689-1773) m. Mercy Baker (1692-1769)

Samuel was born in about 1689 in Eastham, Massachusetts and died sometime after 1773. On February 17, 1713, he married Mercy Baker, who was born on January 4, 1692 in Yarmouth, the daughter of William and Mercy or Marcy (Lawrence) Baker. Samuel's wife, Mercy, died on September 10, 1769.

Researching Samuel’s family was made more difficult by the fact that another Samuel Smith lived in Barnstable County at the same time. The other Samuel Smith married an Abigail and then a Sarah. Some researchers have confused the two. I’ve included only the children who are linked to this Samuel and his wife Mercy through either records or written histories. There may have been others.

The couple had the following children: Jane (1713 - Bef. 1768), Samuel (1718 - Abt. 1793), Charles (Abt. 1720- Abt. 1770), William (see below), Isaac (1724 - Aft. 1742) and Thankful (1727-1769).

William Smith (1722-1773) m. Anna O’Kelley (1720 - Aft. 1773)

Born on January 1, 1722 in Yarmouth, Massachusetts, William married Anna O’Killey/O’Kelley on January 29, 1742. Anna was born April 28, 1720 in Yarmouth, the daughter of Joseph and Tabitha (Baker) O’Kelley. Anna’s mother, Tabitha, was a cousin of William’s mother Mercy Baker, meaning that William and Anna shared great-grandparents Francis and Isabel (Twining) Baker, making them second cousins.
In his will, William divided his estate equally between his sons Obed Edom and Samuel, as well as all of his wearing apparel. He also mentioned his wife Anna, but the version I saw of the will was missing a page, and considering it was scanned into the Ancestry database directly from the Massachusetts probate records, it may no longer exist. It does, however, show that at the time he wrote the will, in 1773, she was alive.

The couple had the following children: Jane “Jenny” (Abt. 1744-1830), Tabitha Doane (1747-?), Sara Ryder (1749-1809), Elizabeth (1751-1830), Obed Edom (see below), Samuel (Abt. 1761-1834), and Mercy (Abt. 1765-1793).


Obed Edom Smith (1755-1842) m. Abigail Paine (1754-1842)

Obed Edom Smith was born on August 30, 1755 in Harwich, Massachusetts. On December 11, 1777, he married Abigail Paine, who was born January 16, 1754, also in Harwich, the daughter of Ebenezer and Mary (Allen) Paine. He died in 1842, and Abigail died on December 6 the same year.

The couple had the following children: William (1779-1823), Allen (1782-1836), Rebecca (1782 - Aft. 1855), Obed (1787-1851), David (see below), Ebenezer (1791-1874), Warren (1795-1855), Freeman (1797-1838) and Polly (1801 - Aft. 1855).


David Smith (1788-1873) m. Jerusha Ryder (1794-1867)

Like generations of his family, David Smith was born in Harwich, Massachusetts, on December 17, 1788. He married Jerusha Ryder on December 6, 1812 in Chatham, Barnstable County, Massachusetts. She was born January 9, 1794 in Chatham, the daughter of Stephen and Bathsheba (Nickerson) Ryder. According to the 1860 census, David was a laborer, but in the 1870 census, he’s listed as a farmer, so it’s possible that he was doing labor on a family member’s farm, if not his own. According to census data, many nearby neighbors were either his children’s families or those of his cousins.

Jerusha died on August 10, 1867 in Harwich, while David outlived her and died on December 11, 1873, also in Harwich.

The couple had the following children: Bathsheba (1814-1900), Nehemiah (1817-1892), David (1819 - Aft. 1865), Stephen (1821-1864), Deborah Downes (1824-1921), Jerusha Ryder (see below) and James R. (1830-1910).


Jerusha Ryder Smith (1827-1904) m. Thomas Brownell Wilcox (1821-1908)

Jerusha and Thomas are the same couple listed above, under the John Alden and Priscilla Mullins line of descent.



As I mentioned at the beginning, all of Margaret Waterman's Mayflower ancestors come through the Wilcox line. My reckoning, as of now, is that she had six biological ancestors aboard the Mayflower (John Alden; William and Alice Mullins; Priscilla Mullins; and Stephen and Giles Hopkins) and three who were strongly connected to the family through a non-biological parental relationship (Francis and John Cooke; and Richard Warren). If I discover any more, I will include it in a future document.

Given how closely intertwined many of these Massachusetts families were in colonial days, I wouldn’t be surprised if there are more, or if there is more than one path to the ancestors I’ve listed above.


- May 4, 2020
Tags: family, genealogy, history, husband
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