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New England families, genealogical and memorial; a record of the achievements of her people in...the founding of a nation (Volume 2) online

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the name migrated from Dauphine, first
to Brittany and then to Normandy, where
he joined William the Conqueror. Cer-

tain it is that among the names of the
followers of William painted on the chan-
cel ceiling in the ancient church of Dives
in old Normandy, is that of Robert, Comte
de Mortain. It also figures on Battle Ab-
bey Roll, the Domesday Book, and the
Norman Rolls, and it is conjectured that
this Count Robert, who was also half-
brother of the Conqueror by his mother
Harlotte, was the founder of the Eng-
lish family of that name. In the Bayeux
tapestry he is represented as of the Coun-
cil of William, the result of which was
the entrenchment of Hastings and the
conquest of England. Count Robert held
manors in nearly every county in Eng-
land, in all about eight hundred, among
which was Pevensea, where the Con-
queror landed, and where in 1087 Robert
and his brother Odo, Bishop of Bayeux,
were besieged six weeks by William
Rufus. Here Camden (1551-1628) found
"the most entire remains of a Roman
building to be seen in Britain." When
William, Earl of Moriton and Cornwall,
son of Robert, rebelled against Henry I.,
that prince seized and razed his castles,
but this one seems to have escaped demo-
lition. In early Norman times this Wil-
liam built a castle at Tamerton, Corn-
wall, and founded a college of canons, as
appeared by the Domesday Book, where
it is called Lanstaveton. On the north
side of the Gretna in Richmondshire
stands an old manor house called More-
ton Tower, from a lofty, square embattled
tower at one end of it. Of the family of
Morton were the Earls of Dulcie and
Cornwall ; Robert Morton, Esquire, of
Bawtry ; Thomas Morton, secretary to
Edward III. ; William Morton, bishop of
Meath ; Robert Morton, bishop of Worces-
ter in i486; John Morton, the celebrated
cardinal archbishop of Canterbury and
lord chancellor of England, 1420-1500;
Albert Morton, secretary of state to



James I.; Thomas Morton (1564-1659), or, what is more probable, he remained to

bishop of Durham and chaplain to James
II. Prominent among the English Mor-
tons who early came to America were
Thomas Morton, Esquire; Rev. Charles
Morton ; Landgrave Joseph Morton, pro-
prietary governor of South Carolina ; and
George Morton.

(I) George Morton, the first of the
name to found a family in America, and
the ancestor of former Vice-President
Levi P. Morton, was born about 1585, at
Austerfield, Yorkshire, England, and it is
believed was of the ancient Mortons, who
bore for arms : Quarterly, gules and er-
mine ; in the dexter chief and sinister base,
each a goat's head erased argent attired
or. Crest: A goat's head, argent attired
or. Hunter, in his "Founders of New
Plymouth," suggests that he may have
been the George Morton hitherto un-
accounted for in the family of Anthony
Morton, of Bawtry, one of the historical
families of England, and that from
Romanist lineage "he so far departed
from the spirit and principles of his fam-
ily as to have fallen into the ranks of the
Protestant Puritans and Separatists." Of
George Morton's early life no record has
been preserved, and his religious environ-

promote the success of the colony by en-
couraging emigration among others. That
he served in some official capacity before
coming to America, is undoubted. One
writer states that he was "the agent of
those of his sect in London," and another,
that he acted as "the financial agent in
London for Plymouth County." The work,
however, for which this eminent forefather
is most noted, and which will forever link
his name with American history, is the
publication issued by him in London, in
1622, of what has since been known as
"Mourt's Relation." This "Relation,"
may justly be termed the first history of
New England, and is composed of letters
and journals from the chief colonists at
Plymouth, either addressed or intrusted
to George Morton, whose authorship in
the work is possibly limited to the preface.
The "Relation" itself is full of valuable
information and still continues an author-
ity. Shortly after it was placed before
the public, George Morton prepared to
emigrate to America, and sailed with his
wife and five children in the "Ann," the
third and last ship to carry what are dis-
tinctively known as the Forefathers, and
reached Plymouth early in June, 1623.
"New England's Memorial" speaks of Mr.

ments and the causes which led him to Timothy Hatherly and Mr. George Mor-
unite with the Separatists are alike un-
known. His home in Yorkshire was in
the vicinage of Scrooby Manor, and possi-
bly he was a member of Brewster's his-
toric church ; but it is only definitely
known that he early joined the Pilgrims
at Leyden, and continued of their com-
pany until his death. When the first of
the colonists departed for America, Mr.
Morton remained behind, although he
"much desired" to embark then and in-
tended soon to join them. His reasons
for such a course is a matter of conjec-
ture. As he was a merchant, possibly his
business interests caused his detention,

ton as "two of the principal passengers
that came in this ship," and from Mor-
ton's activity in promoting emigration it
may be inferred that the "Ann's" valuable
addition to the colony was in a measure
due to his efforts. He did not long sur-
vive his arrival, and his early death was
a serious loss to the infant settlement.
His character and attainments were such
as to suggest the thought that, had he
lived to the age reached by several of his
distinguished contemporaries, he would
have filled as conspicuous a place in the
life of the colony. The Memorial thus
chronicles his decease:



Mr. George Morton was a pious, gracious
servant of God, and very faithful in whatsoever
public employment he be trusted withal, and an
unfeigned well-wilier, and according to his
sphere and condition a suitable promoter of the
common good and growth of the plantation of
New Plymouth, labouring to still the discon-
tents that sometimes would arise amongst some
spirits, by occasion of the difficulties of these
new beginnings; but it pleased God to put a
period to his days soon after his arrival in New
England, not surviving a full year after his com-
ing ashore. With much comfort and peace he
fell asleep in the Lord, in the month of June
anno 1624.

He married Juliana Carpenter, as
shown by the entry in the Leyden
records: "George Morton, merchant,
from York in England, accompanied by
Thomas Morton, his brother, and Roger
Wilson, his acquaintance, with Juliana
Carpenter, maid from Baths in England,
accompanied by Alexander Carpenter, her
father, and Alice Carpenter, her sister,
and Anna Robinson, her acquaintance.
The banns published 6-16 July, 1612; the
marriage took place 23 July-2 August,
1612." Mrs. Morton married (second)
Manasseh Kempton, Esquire, a member of
the first and other assemblies of the colony.
She died at Plymouth, February 18, 1665,
in the eighty-first year of her age, and is
mentioned in the Town Records as "a
faithful servant of God." Children of
George and Juliana (Carpenter) Mor-
ton: Nathaniel, Patience, John, Sarah
and Ephraim.

(II) Lieutenant Ephraim Morton,
youngest child of George and Juliana
(Carpenter) Morton, was born in 1623,
on the ship "Ann." In 1648 he became
a freeman of Plymouth, and in the same
year was constable ; was chosen a repre-
sentative to the General Court at Ply-
mouth in 1657, and was a member of that
body for twenty-eight years. He was
chosen the first representative to the
Massachusetts General Court under the
charter of 1691-92; was for nearly twenty-

five years at the head of the board of
selectmen of Plymouth, and in 1683 was
chosen a magistrate of the colony. At the
time of his death he was a justice of the
Court of Common Pleas, and also served
in other important relations. He died
September 7, 1693. He married (first)
November 18, 1644, Ann Cooper, who
died September 1, 1691. He married
(second) in 1692, Mary, widow of Wil-
liam Harlow, and daughter of Robert
Shelly, of Scituate. Children: George,
born 1645 ; Ephraim, 1648; Rebecca, 165 1 ;
Josiah, 1653 ; Nathaniel ; Eleazer, men-
tioned below ; Thomas, 1667 ; Patience.

(III) Eleazer, fifth son of Ephraim
Morton, married, in 1693, Rebecca Dawes,
daughter of Ambrose, and their children
were: Eleazer, born 1693; Ann, 1694,
married Robert Finney ; Nathaniel, men-
tioned below; Rebecca, 1703.

(IV) Nathaniel, son of Eleazer and
Rebecca (Dawes) Morton, was born 1695,
and was lost at sea before 1730. He mar-
ried, in 1720, Rebecca Ellis, widow of
Mordecai Ellis, and daughter of Thomas
Clark. Children: Elizabeth, born 1720;
Nathaniel, mentioned below ; Eleazer,
1724; Ichabod, 1726.

(V) Major Nathaniel (2) Morton,
eldest son of Nathaniel (1) and Rebecca
(Clark) Morton, born February 1, 1723,
was a soldier in the Revolutionary War,
being at first second lieutenant in Captain
Levi Rounseville's company of minute-
men, subsequently commander of a com-
pany, and then promoted to major. There
were many members of the Morton
family named Nathaniel, and on Decem-
ber 8, 1776, there were among the officers
and private soldiers of the local militia
of East Freetown who responded to
what was known as the "Rhode Island
alarm," no less than four Nathaniel
Mortons : the company commander
(later major) ; his son Nathaniel (then
called Nathaniel, Jr., but in subsequent



life widely known as Hon. Nathaniel
Morton), who was one of the four ser-
geants of the company ; Nathaniel Mor-
ton, Sr., and Nathaniel Morton (4th).
Nathaniel (2) Morton married, in 1749,
Martha Tupper, of Sandwich, daughter
of Eldad Tupper, and granddaughter of
Thomas Tupper, and their children were:
Nathaniel, born 1753 ; Martha ; Elizabeth ;
Job, mentioned below.

(VI) Job, youngest child of Nathaniel
(2) and Martha (Tupper) Morton, was
born June 14, 1770, at East Freetown, and
received fine educational advantages.
After attending the common schools he
took a collegiate course, and was gradu-
ated at Brown University in 1797. He
studied medicine, but never practiced.
Like his forefathers he took a prominent
part in the affairs of the town. On April
1, 1805, he was elected a selectman of
Freetown, and served twenty-four years
as such ; on the same date he was chosen
assessor of Freetown, in which office he
served twenty-eight years. On May 14,
1814, he was chosen representative of
Freetown in the General Court, and
served acceptably for eleven years. On
February 9, 181 1, he was commissioned
a justice of the peace for the county of
Bristol. In 1812 he was appointed clerk
of the county courts, but it is not known
that he accepted this position ; if he did,
he held it only a short time. He was also
chairman of the board of commissioners
of highways, which soon came to be
known as the board of county commis-
sioners. After his marriage he resided in
an old-fashioned unpretentious looking
house still standing in East Freetown,
about a third of a mile from the line that
divides Freetown from Lakeville, in
which all his children were born. He
died in March, 1843, in the house men-
tioned near the one in which he was born.
He married, in 1802, Patience Purring-
ton (or Purington), of Middleboro, who

died February 15, 1841. Children: 1.
James Madison, born April 28, 1803;
passed the years of his earlier manhood
in Fairhaven, Massachusetts, where he
was treasurer of the White cotton mill.
In the winter of 1840 he moved to Fal!
River, where he passed the remainder of
his life, dying there March 2, 181 1. On
May 25, 1822, he was commissioned
ensign of the local militia in East Free-
town, promoted to lieutenant August 20,
1824; honorably discharged July 5, 1827.
He married Sarah Maria Ann Tobey, and
they had four children. 2. Albert Galla-
tin, born August 8, 1804, lived and died
in Freetown ; he was a clergyman of the
Christian denomination. 3. Charles Aus-
tin, born May 14, 1806, died in a house
standing only a few rods from the one
in which he was born. For a time he held
a position in the Boston custom house ;
was selectman of Freetown nine years ;
assessor eight years ; member of the
school committee nine years ; representa-
tive to the General Court one year; and
was a justice of the peace for the county
of Bristol from April n, 1839. No man
in East Freetown or anywhere was better
posted regarding the local affairs of that
place and the immediate vicinity, he and
his neighbor, Dr. Bradford Braley, being
"lively oracles" to and "walking his-
tories" of East Freetown, and the adja-
cent parts of Lakeville and Rochester. 4.
Elbridge Gerry, born March 8, 1808,
moved to Fairhaven, where he lived for
many years. He was a leader in the
public life of that place, serving five years
as selectman ; sixteen years as moderator
of the annual town meeting; three years
as representative to the General Court in
Boston ; delegate to the constitutional
convention of 1853; and was elected in
1853 a member of the board of commis-
sioners of Bristol county (which consisted
of three commissioners and two special
commissioners), of which board he was


immediately chosen chairman. Toward
the close of his life he was postmaster at
Fairhaven. 5. William G., born April 10,
1810, died March 8, 181 1. 6. Hannah P.,
born 181 1, married Harrison Staples, of
Lakeville, Massachusetts, where she died.
7. Andrew Jackson, mentioned below. 8.
William A., born March 20, 1817, at the
old place, was reared there, and died in
1886, in the house in which he was born.
The sons of this family were all "six
footers," and were of marked personality.

(VII) Andrew Jackson, sixth son of
Job and Patience (Purrington) Morton,
was born July 5, 1812, in Freetown, and
was a farmer all his life, dying March
10, 1893. He lived in East Freetown,
near the old homestead, his farm com-
prising what is now Lake Side Park. In
politics he was a Republican, but he was
not active in party affairs or public mat-
ters of any kind. He married Abbie Lawr-
ence, born September 18, 1817, daughter
of Alden and Chloe (Sherman) Lawr-
ence, of Freetown, died March 25, 1906.
Children: William Grey, born February
6, 1838, died at sea January 18, 1878;
George Washington, October 22, 1840,
died June 2, 1842; Patience Purrington,
November 24, 1842, married George H.
Gerrish ; Martha Washington, April 1,
1845, married Charles F. Vaughn, of Mid-
dleboro, and died in Rochester, Massa-
chusetts; George Andrew, January 31,
1848, died August 2, 1850; Myron Lawr-
ence, June 25, 1850, is living in Boston ;
Frank Pierce, January 4, 1853, lives in
New Bedford ; Thomas J., March 2, 1856,
living in Taunton, married Helen Watts,
of Taunton, she died in Taunton, May,
1912 ; Herbert Andrew, mentioned below;
Anna Cora, February 28, 1862, died No-
vember 14, 1888.

(VIII) Herbert Andrew Morton,
youngest son of Andrew J. and Abbie
(Lawrence) Morton, was born March 16,

1858, in Lakeville, Massachusetts, near
the old homestead in East Freetown.
His early training was obtained in the
district schools in East Freetown and
was limited, but he later had two terms
in a graded school in Middleboro, when
about eighteen or nineteen years of age.
When only nine years of age he went
away from home to live in another
family, so it may readily be seen that
whatever he has has been acquired
through his own efforts. In 1878 he spent
part of his time in Taunton, where in
November, 1882, he went into the laundry
business with his brother. He had, how-
ever, been working a few years for Wil-
liam Webster, and his brother, Myron
Morton, who was then in the clothing
business in Taunton. The success of the
Morton Brothers and the remarkable
growth of their laundry establishment is
due to the fact that both are men of
energy and executive ability, and by har-
monious cooperation they have placed
their business on a profitable basis.
Everything is carried on in the most
modern fashion and the plant is a credit
to the community. Herbert A. Morton
is well known socially, being a member
of Ionic Lodge, Free and Accepted
Masons (of which he is a past master) ;
St. Mark's Chapter, Royal Arch Masons ;
Bristol Commandery, Knights Templar,
of Attleboro ; the Eastern Star, and Sab-
batia Lodge, Independent Order of Odd
Fellows. He is also district deputy of
the Twenty-eighth Masonic District ot
Massachusetts. In politics he is a Repub-
lican. He married, June 29, 1909, Alice
Shaw, daughter of William C. and Fannie
B. (Coffin) Shaw, the former of Nan-
tucket (see Shaw VIII).

(The Shaw Line).

(I) Anthony Shaw was early in Bos-
ton, Massachusetts, whence he removed
to Portsmouth, Rhode Island, and later



to Little Compton, same colony, where he
died August 21, 1705. The inventory of
his estate footed two hundred and thir-
teen pounds, twelve shilling, two pence,
including a negro man valued at thirty
pounds, and silver money amounting to
nine pounds. On April 20, 1665, he
bought ten acres of land in Portsmouth,
for forty pounds, including a house and
three hundred good boards. He married
Alice, daughter of John Stonard, of Bos-
ton, where their first three children were
born, namely: William, January 21,
1654, died March 10 following; William,
February 24, 1655; Elizabeth, May 21,
1656. The others, born in Rhode Island,
were: Israel, mentioned below; Ruth,
married John Cook ; Grace, wife of Joseph

(II) Israel, third son of Anthony and
Alice (Stonard) Shaw, lived in Little
Compton, and married, in 1689, a daugh-
ter of Peter Tallman, of Portsmouth.
Her baptismal name is not preserved. He
sold two parcels of land in Portsmouth,
February 11, 1707, to his brother-in-law,
John Cook, of Tiverton, and in the bar-
gain were included buildings and
orchards, and a share in Hog Island. The
consideration was two hundred ten
pounds and ten shillings. Children :
William, born November 7, 1690; Mary,
February 17, 1692; Anthony, mentioned
below; Alice, November 17, 1695; Israel,
August 28, 1697; Hannah, March 7, 1699;
Jeremiah, June 6, 1700; Ruth, February
10, 1702; Peter, October 6, 1704; Eliza-
beth, February 7, 1706; Grace, October
20, 1707; Comfort, August 9, 1709;
Deborah, July 15, 171 1.

(III) Anthony, second son of Israel
Shaw, was born January 29, 1694, in
Little Compton, and died there in March,
1759. He married, August 14, 1718, in
Little Compton, by Justice Thomas
Church, Rebecca Wood, born April 17,

1696, died January, 1766, daughter of
Thomas Wood. Children: Benjamin,
mentioned below ; Mary, born February
24, 1722; Ruth, September 29, 1723;
Anthony, November 30, 1725 ; Elizabeth,
January 10, 1728, died January, 1804;
Rebecca, January 27, 1730; Arnold, No-
vember 13, 1732; Thomas, January 26,
1735 ; John, May 5, 1737.

(IV) Benjamin, eldest child of An-
thony and Rebecca (Wood) Shaw, was
born October 5, 1720, in Little Compton,
and died there in September, 1794. He
married, 1749, Elizabeth Potter. Chil-
dren: Sylvanus, born May 4, 1750, died
October 22, 1777; Nathaniel, mentioned
below ; Rhoda, October 2, 1753, died
young; Rhoda, January 1, 1756; Noah,
February 2, 1758; Susanna, March 25,
1760; Barnabus, October 24, 1761 ; Ben-
jamin, July 24, 1763; Elizabeth, October
5, 1764; Asa, March 1, 1766; Renanuel,
July 21, 1768.

(V) Nathaniel, second son of Benja-
min and Elizabeth (Potter) Shaw, born
February 24, 1752, married a daughter of
Thomas Cory. It is family history that
both Nathaniel and his father-in-law
served in the Revolutionary War. His
children were: William, Job, Cory, and
perhaps others.

(VI) Job, son of Nathaniel Shaw,
born about 1783, in Tiverton, Rhode
Island, was a cooper by trade and occupa-
tion, and resided in Tiverton and New
Bedford. He died in the latter town in
1862, aged seventy-nine years three
months. He married Amy Macomber,
and had children: Humphrey; Frederick
P., mentioned below; Job L. ; Phebe M.,
married Charles C. Allen ; Adaline, mar-
ried Benjamin Brown, of New Bedford.

(VII) Frederick P., second son of Job
and Amy (Macomber) Shaw, was born
July 17, 181 1, in New Bedford, Massa-
chusetts, and after such schooling as was



then usually given to a boy, he learned
the cooper's trade under the direction of
his father, who carried on that business
in New Bedford. In due time he changed
his occupation, engaging in the grocery
business in his native city, his location
being on Purchase street, near North, in
time moving to the northwest corner of
Purchase and Kempton streets. A part-
nership was eventually formed with his
younger brother, the late Job L. Shaw,
who had been an assistant in the store
with him. The two remained together in
business until the year 1844, when the
partnership was dissolved and each en-
gaged in business for himself. Some
years later they again became associated
under the firm name of Shaw & Brother,
conducting a wholesale grocery business,
their location being on Union street,
with a branch house in East Saginaw,
Michigan, in which was interested the
son of Mr. Frederick P. Shaw, the late
Captain Charles Frederick Shaw, who
was for many years in active life in New
Bedford. In the meantime, in 1849, Mr '
Frederick P. Shaw went to California,
sailing from New Bedford in the bark
"Sylph," and after his return he was for
a period engaged in the wholesale gro-
cery business in Providence, Rhode
Island, being a member of the firm of
Work, Shaw & Company. Mr. Shaw
took an active interest in the public affairs
of New Bedford, and was influential and
prominent in citizenship. He was chosen
a member of the Common Council in
1852, and in 1875 represented the city in
the General Court of Massachusetts,
elected as a Democrat, though really
independent in politics. He was inter-
ested and active generally in politics
regardless or independent of party lines,
and his election on the Democratic ticket
to the General Court was due to the sup-
port received from both of the great
parties. The religious faith of Mr. Shaw

was that of the Christian denomination,
he being a member of the North Christian
Church at New Bedford, and for several
years he was the church clerk. Mr. Shaw
was well known in both business and
social circles. He was a very agreeable
gentleman, methodical and systematic in
his affairs, and had the reputation of
being shrewd, keen and capable. Perhaps
a year prior to his death he was stricken
with apoplexy, from which he never fully
recovered ; and a recurrence of the attack
about a week before his death was the
cause of it. This event occurred at his
home in Purchase street, New Bedford,
December 1, 1883, when he was aged
seventy-two years four months. He mar-
ried in early manhood, Mary Maxfield,
born April 10, 181 2, died January 25, 1905,
daughter of David and Mary (Soule)
Maxfield (see Maxfield VI). Children:
Charles F., died young ; Charles F., born
November 28, 1840; Marion, May II,
1843, married (first) January 25, 1869,
Preserved Bullock, who died August 29,
1875, (second) November 27, 1884, Major
Edwin Dews, who died June 11, 1904;
Anna V., May 13, 1846, died February
14, 1907, unmarried; Florence C, Sep-
tember, 1849, married, June 29, 1869,
Arthur R. Brown, and resides in New
Bedford ; William C, mentioned below.

(VIII) William C, youngest child of
Frederick P. and Mary (Maxfield) Shaw,
was born June 30, 1855. He married,
February 20, 1879, Fannie B. Coffin, and
had one daughter, Alice Coffin, mentioned

(IX) Alice Coffin, only child of Wil-
liam C. and Fannie B. (Coffin) Shaw,
was born November 9, 1879, and married,
June 29, 1909, Herbert A. Morton of
Taunton (see Morton VIII).

(The Coffin Line).

In Fallaise, a town in Normandy,
stands the old chateau of Courtitout,



once the home of the Norman Coffins ;
the name is now extinct in that vicinage.
The chateau is now owned by Monsieur
Le Clere, who is the grandson of the
last Mademoiselle Coffin, who married a
Le Clere in 1796. Until her marriage the
chateau had always been owned by a
Coffin. (The above information came
through Admiral Henry E. Coffin, of the
English navy, who is the nephew of
Admiral Sir Isaac Coffin, who was born
in Boston, Massachusetts, May 16, 1759,
made a baronet and granted a coat-of-
arms in 1804). The family traces its
ancestry to Sir Richard Coffin, Knight,

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