D. Hamilton (Duane Hamilton) Hurd.

History of Plymouth County, Massachusetts : with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men (Volume 2) online

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Elizabeth Warren.

Abigail Warren.



Of these, Patience and Fear Brewster were children
of the elder; Goodwife Flavell was the wife of
Thomas, who came in the " Fortune ;'' Bridget Fuller
was the wife of Samuel, who came in the " May-
flower ;" Margaret Hicks was the wife of llobert,
who came in the " Fortune," and had with her three
children ; William Hilton brought his wife and two
children ; George Morton brought six children ;
Thomas Morton, Jr., was the son of Thomas, who
came in the "Fortune;" Alice Southworth was the
widow of Edward and the future wife of Governor
Bradford ; Barbara Standish was the future wife of
Miles, her maiden name unknown ; Hester Cooke was
the wife of Francis, who came in the " Mayflower;"
and Elizabeth Warren was the wife of Richard, one
of the " Mayflower" passengers, and came with her
five children. Of the whole number Bradford says
that about " sixty were for the general, some of
them beiug very useful persons and became good
members to the body, and besides these there came a
company that did not belong to the general body,
but came on their own particular, and were to have lands
assigned them and be for themselves, yet to be subject
to the general government." Of these last it is prob-
able that John Oldham and his company of nine
formed a part or the whole. The passengers by
these two vessels, with those of the " Mayflower" and



" Fortune," make up the list of those called first-
comers.

By the terms of the contract with the adventurers,
the two parties to the contract formed a joint stock
company, whose lands and goods were to remain in
common for seven years. The company during the
seasons of 1621 and 1622 had worked together on
company lands, but it was found that the want of
individual responsibility was the means of producing
unsatisfactory results. " So they began" in 1G23 " to
think how they might raise as much corn as t hoy
could and obtain a better crop than they had done,
that they might not still thus languish in misery.
At length after much debate of things the Governor
(with the advice of the chiefest amongst them) gave
way that they should set corn every man for his own
particular and in that regard trust to themselves : in
all other things to go on in the general way as before.
And so he assigned to every family a parcel of land
according to the proportion of their number for that
end only for present use (but made no division for
inheritance), and ranged all boys and youth under
some family. This had very good success; for it
made all hands very industrious." The result was
that the harvest of 1623 was abundant, and Bradford
says " instead of famine now God gave them plenty,
and the face of things was changed to the re-
joicing of the heart, of many, for which they blessed
God. And the effect of their particular planting was
well seen, for all had one way and other pretty well
to bring the year about, and some of the abler sort
and more industrious had to spare and sell to others,
so as any general want or famine hath not been
amongst them since to this day." (Bradford's " His-
tory of Plymouth Plantation," begun in 1630 and fin-
ished in 1650.)

The " Ann" sailed on her return voyage Sept.
10, 1623, laden with clapboards and furs, and
Edward Winslow was sent in her to render accounts
to the adventurers and procure such things as were
thought needful for the colony. The " Little James"
remained in Plymouth engaged in tradiug excursions
until 1625, when she returned also to England. A
reference by Bradford to one of her expeditions is
valuable, aa showing the unfounded nature of the
popular belief that Brown's Ialand, outside of Ply-
mouth harbor, was once an actual island. He says,
"Also in her return home, at the very entrance into
their own harbor, she had like to have been east away
in a storm, and was forced to cut her main mast by
the board to save herself from driving on the jiats
that lie without called Brown's Island." During the
remainder of the year the colony was more or less



HISTORY OF PLYMOUTH.



87



disturbed by the management and conduct of* Thomas
Weston, who had made a settlement at Massachusetts,
and by the arrival of Robert Gorges, brother of Sir
Ferdiuando Gorges, holding a commission from the
Council of New England to be Governor-General of
the country. His commission appointed for his coun-
sel and assistance Francis West, Christopher Lovett,
and the Governor of New Plymouth, and gave him
authority to appoint such other persons as he should
see fit. It also gave him and his assistants or any
three of them, of which three he must be one, full
power to do and execute what to them should seem
good in all cases, whether criminal or civil. Before
the close of the year, however, Gorges abandoned his
office, and, in the language of Bradford, " returned for
England having scarcely saluted the country in his
government, not finding the state of things here to
answer his quality and condition."

In March. 1623/4, Mr. Winslow returned in the
" Charity," a vessel engaged in fishiug, bringing with
him the first cattle introduced into the colony, con-
sisting of a bull and three heifers, and' also clothing
and other necessaries. He brought also the following
letter from James Sherley, oue of the adventurers,
which will explain the condition of their affairs at
that time :

" Most worthy £ loving friends, your kind and loving letters
I liuve received, and render you many thanks. It hatli pleased
God to stir up the hearts of our adventurers to raise a new
stock for the setting furth of the ship ualled the Charity with
men A necessaries, both for the plantation and the fishing,
though accomplished with very great difficulty; in regard we
have -uiny amongst us which undoubtedly aim more at their
own private ends, and the thwarting £ opposing of some here
and other worthy instruments of God's glory elsewhere, than
at the general good and furtherance of this noble & laudablo
action. Yet again we have many others, and I hope the
greatest part very honest Christian men, which I am persuaded
their ends and intents are wholly for the glory of our Lord
Jesus Christ in the propagation of his gospel and hope of gain-
ing those poor salvages to the knowledge of God. ISut us we
have a proverb one scabbed sheep may inarr a whole flock, so
these malcoutented persons and turbulent spirits do what in
tbem lyeth to withdraw men's hearts from you and your friends,
yea even from the general business, and yet under show and
pretense of godliness and furtherance of the plantation. Whereas
the quite contrary doth plainly appear, as some of the honester
hearted men (though of late of their faction) did make mani-
fest at our late meeting. But what should I trouble you or
myself with theso restless affairs of ull goodness, and I doubt
will be continual disturbances of our friendly meetings &. love.
On Thursday, the 3th of January, we had a meeting about the
articles between you and us where thoy would reject that which
we in our late letters pressed you to grant (an addition to tho
time of our joint stock). And their reason whioh they would
make known to us was, it troubled their conscience to exact
longer time of you than was agreed upon at the first. But that
night they were so followed and crossed of their perverse courses
as they were even wearied, and offered to sell their adventures,



and some were willing to buy. But I, doubting they wuuld
raise more scandal and false reports, ancl so divers way do us
more hurt by going off in such a fury than they could or can
by continuing adventurers amongst us, would not sutler them.
But on the 1 2th of January we had anothor meeting, but in
the interim divers of us had talked with most of them privately,
and bad great combats & reasoning pro X con. But at night
when wo met to read the general letter we had the luviugest
and friendliest meeting that ever I knew, and our greatest ene-
mies offered to lend us fifty pounds. So I sent for a potte of
wine (I would you could do tho like) which we drank friendly
together. Thus God can turn the hearts of men when it pleaseth
him. Thus, loving friends, I heartily salute you all in the
Lord, hoping ever to rest,

" Yours to my power,

" jAMtS SlIElILKV.

"Jan. 25, 1623/4."

Mr. Sherley was one of the adventurers who proved
himself until his death a true friend of the colony.
He sent over a heifer as a gift, which, with its in-
crease, was to be held for the beuefit of the poor of
the town, aud in honor of its first benefactor and its
faithful frieud Plymouth has named one of its squares
" Sherley Square." The names of the other adven-
turers, either in 1620 or at this time, are not posi-
tively known. A list, however, has been preserved
of those who formed the company Nov. 25, 1626,
and who at that time subscribed a supplementary
agreement with the Pilgrims. In making up from
this a list of the original members it must be remem-
bered that several names, including those of Thomas
Weston, William Greene, and Edward Piekeiiug,
who had left the company, must be included, and
perhaps the names of some new members be omitted.
The list in 1626 was as follows:



Robert Alden.
Einnu Alltham.
ltiehard Andrews.
Thomas Andrews.
Lawrence Anthony.
Edward Bass.
Jobn Bcaucharnp.
Thomas Brewer.
Henry Browning.
William Collier.
Thomas Coventry.
Thomas Fletcher.
Thomas Goffe.
Peter Gudburn.
Timothy Hutherly.
Thomas Heath.
William liobson.
Robert Holland.
Thomas Hudson.
Robert Kcaa.
John King.



Eliza Knight.
John Knight.
Myles ICuowles.
Thomas Millsop.
Thomas Mott.
Fria Xcwbold.
William l'enningtou.
William Penren.
John Pocock.
Daniel Pointer.
William Quurlcs.
John Uevell.
Ncwmnu Rooks.
Samuel Sharp.
James Sherley.
Jobn Thornell.
Matthew Tbornhill.
Joseph Tildcn.
Thomas Ward.
John White.
Richard Wright.



Of these, William Collier, Timothy Hatherly.
John Revell, Thomas Andrews, Thomas Brewer,
Henry Browning, John Kuight, Samuel Sharp,



HISTORY OF PLYMOUTH COUNTY.



Thomas Ward, and John White probably caine to
New England before 1C40. Timothy Hatherly came
in the ■' Aho," and going home, again came to the Old
Colony, and John Revell went back not to return.
These gentlemen have been known in history as the
" Merchant Adventurers." Johu Smith, writing in
1624, says, " The adventurers which raised the stock
to begin and supply the plantation were about seventy,
some gentlemen, some merchants, some handicrafts-
men, some adventuring great sums, some small, as
their estates aud affection served. These dwelt most
in London. They are not a corporation, but knit to-
gether by a voluntary combiuatiou in a society without
restraint or penalty, aiming to do good and to plant
religion."

Other letters were received from Robert Cushman
aud John Robinson, the latter full of advice and
counsel, and with reference to the summary punish-
ment inflicted by Standish on Pecksuot and other na-
tives, of which he had been advised, he said, "Con-
cerning the killing of these poor Indians, of which
we heard at first by report and since by more certain
relation, oh ! how happy a thing had it been if you
had converted some before you had killed any; be-
sides, where blood has once begun to be shed, it is
seldom stanched of a long time after. You well say
they deserved it. I grant it ; but upon what provo-
cations and invitements by those heathenish Chris-
tians ? (Weston's men.) Besides, you being no magis-
trates over them, were to consider, not what they
deserved, but what you were by necessity constrained
to inflict." Still other letters represented the unfavor-
able reports which certain discontented hangers on of
the colony had made, which at Mr. Sherley's sugges-
tion were answered in full. Mr. John Lyford had been
sent in the " Charity" by a part of the adventurers to
act as pastor, but he proved unsatisfactory, and was
soon sent back. The " Charity" also brought a fish-
ing-patent for Cape Ann, issued by Lord Sheffield, a
member of the Council for New England, to Robert
Cushman and Edward Winslow and their associates,
which, however, proved of little value, and was soon
abandoned. It was dated Jan. 1, 1623/4, and the
original parchment has been within a few years dis-
covered and published in facsimile under the edi-
torial care of Mr. John Wingate Thornton.

In the spring of 1624, before the planting season
began, a general desire was expressed for a more
permanent division of land. Bradford says that
" they began now highly to prize corn as more
precious than silver, and those that had some to spare
began to trade, one with another, for small things, by
the quart, pottle, and peck ; for money they had uone,



aud if any had, corn was preferred before it. That
they might therefore increase their tillage to butter
advantage, they made suit to the Governor to have
some portion of land given them for continuance, and
not by yearly lot, for by that means that which the
more industrious had brought into good culture (by
such pains) one year, came to leave it the nest, and
often another might enjoy it; so as the dressing of
their lands were the more sleightcd over and to less
profit. Which being well considered, their request
was granted. And to every person was given one acre
of land to them and theirs as near the town as might
be, and they had no more till the seven years were
expired." The following allotments were accordingly
made. Sixty-nine acres were granted to those who
came in the " Mayflower." Twenty- nine of these
situated south of Town Bank, between Saudwich
Street and the harbor, and extending south nearly if
uot quite as far as Fremont Street, were granted to



Robert Cushman 1

William Brewster 6

William Bradford 3

Richard Gurdinor 1

Francis Cooke 2

George Soule 1 i



Isaac Allerton 7

John Billington 3

Peter Brown 1

Suuiuol Fuller -'

Joseph Rogers 2



Sixteen acres, including what is now Watson's Hill,
were granted to

John Howland 4 i Edward Doty 1

Steuben Hopkins o Gilbert Winslow 1

Edward Leister 1 I Samuel Fuller, Jr ."

Five acres, betweeu Burial Hill and Murdock's
Pond, were granted to

William White i

Though Mr. White had been dead three years, and
his children received their acres with Edward Wins-
low, whom their mother had married, it is probable
that uuder the articles of agreement he had con-
tributed a sufficient amount of money to entitle his
family to the allotted acres.

Nineteen acres between Court Street aud the
harbor, and bounded on the north by Winslow Square
(Railroad Park), were granted to



Edward Winslow 4

Richard Warren 2

John Goodman 1

John Crackstone 1



John Alden 2

Mary Chilton 1

Miles Standish 2

Francis Eaton 4



Henry Sampson 1 Humilitic Cooper I

In this allotment it is to be noticed that Goodman
had been dead three years according to Bradford, and
that Standish received two acres, though his first wife
died in 1621, and his second wife, Barbara, received
an allotment in her own name. With regard to
Standish, it is probable that the rule applied to White
governed his ease, and perhaps that of Goodman also,
though Goodman had no family. It is more probable



HISTORY OF PLYMOUTH.



89



that the record of the death of Goodman by Brad-
ford before the division of land, is an error.

Thirty-three acres were granted to those who came
in the " Fortune." Six of these immediately north of
Winslow Square, on the east side of Court Street,
were granted to



William Hilton 1

John Winslow 1

William Conner 1



John Adauis 1

William Tonch 1

John Cannon 1



Eight acres immediately north of the Woolen-
Mill Brook were "ranted to



Hugh Static 1

William Beale 1

Thuiuu.- Cushuian 1



Austin Nicolas 1

William Foord 4



Nineteen acres, extending from the First or Shaw's
Brook to the Woolen-Mill Brook, or the Secoud
Brook, were granted to



William Wright 1

William Pitt 1

Robert Hickea... 1

Thuin.is Prenee 1

Stephen Dean 1

Mofta Siuioosnn 1

Philip Dc la Noyc 1

Edward Bouiposse I



Clement Briggs 1

Jaines Steward 1

William Palmer 2

Jonathan BreW6ter 1

Dennet Morgan 1

Thomas Fluvell 2

Thomas Morton 1

William Bassito 2



Ninety-five acres were granted to those who came in
the "Ann" and " Little James." Forty-five acres lying
north of the Woolen-Mill or Second Brook, northerly
across the Third or Cold Spring Brook, were
granted to

James Hand 1

Francis Sprague 3

Edmond Flood 1

Christopher Conaut 1

Fruncis Cooke 4

Edward Burcher 2

John Jenney 5

Goodwill Flavell I

Mannassoh Fauncc 1

John Faunco 1

George Mortou 7

Experience Mitchell. 1

Christian Pcnn 1



Thomas Morton, Jr 1

William Hilton, for wife and

two children

Alice Bradford

Kobort Hickes, for wife and

three children

Bridget Fuller

EUcu Newton

Paticnco Brewster

Fear Brewster

Robert Long

William Heard

Barbara Standisu



Fifty acres on both sides of Wellingsly Brook, and
so on south, were granted to



Two servants of Mr. Peirco.. 2

Ralph Walleu 2

Stephen Trucey 3

Thomas Clarke

Robert Bartlett

Edward Holumo

Francis Palmer

Joshua Pratt

Pbenohas Pratt



Mary Buckett 1

John Oldham £ Co 10

CuthbertCuthbertsoQ 6

Anthony Amiable 4

Thomas Tilden 3

Richard Warren 5

Edward Bangs 4

Robert Rattliffe 2

Nicolas Snow 1

Anthuiiy Dix 1

The precise situation of many of the lots included
in the above division, and the names of their subse-
quent owners aud occupants, may be found in " An-
cient Landmarks of Plymouth." These acres, oue
hundred and ninety-seven in all, had already been
cleared by the Indians, and planted by them perhaps
for centuries. They were confined within a strip of



laud running less than two miles and a half along the
shore, and not more than a quarter of a mile wide in
the widest part. It was doubtless their proximity to
running streams, in which herring abounded and fur-
nished the best means of enriching the soil, which
had probably produced a more extensive clearing than
could be found elsewhere on the coast within the
same limits. It is quite possible that the comparative
richness of this strip to-day, bounded as it is by the
more sandy soil of later clearings, is due to the long
and "enerous culture which it received from the
Patuxet tribe.

In March, 1624, William Bradford was again chosen
Governor. From 1621, when he succeeded Governor
Carver, he was chosen annually until his death in
1657, with the exception of the years 1633, 1636,
and 1644, when Edward Winslow was chosen, and
the years 1634 and 1638, when Thomas Prence was
Governor. Up to thia time Isaac Allerton was the
single assistant, but this year, on the representations
of the Governor that the duties of his office had
increased with the swelling colony, four additional
assistants were chosen. He advised, also, rotation in
office and the substitution of another for himself. He
said, " If it was an honor or benefit it was fit others
should be made partakers of it ; if it was a burthen
(as doubtless it was) it was but equal others should
help to bear it." No record exists showing who be-
sides Mr. Allerton acted as assistants until 1633,
when, at the election of Governor Winslow, William
Bradford, Miles Standish, John Rowland, John
Alden, John Done, Stephen Hopkins, and William
Gibson were chosen. The earliest elections were
held on the 23d of March, the day before the last in
the year under the old style, at a later time in Janu-
ary until 1636, when it was enacted that on the first
Tuesday in March annually " a Governor and seven
assistants be chosen to rule and govern the said plan-
tation within the said limits for one whole year and
no more ; and this election to be made only by the
freemen according to the former customs. Aud that
then also constables for each part, aud other inferior
officers be also chosen."

At this time the colony, according to John Smith,
consisted of " one hundred and eighty persons, some
cattle and goats, but many swiue and poultry and
thirty-two dwelling-houses." He adds, " The place it
seems is healthful, for in these last three years, not-
withstanding their great want of most necessaries, there
hath not one died of the first planters." Iu the lat-
ter part of the year 1624 Winslow sailed again for
England in the " Little James," and returned in
1625. On his return he reported loss of confidence



90



HISTORY OF PLYMOUTH COUNTY.



in the enterprise on the part of the adventurers, and
the debt of the colony to be fourteen hundred pounds.
In the year of his return Standish, takiDg advantage
of the return of a fishing vessel, went to Englaud
" to obtain a supply of goods and learn what terms
could be made for a release." In 1626 he returned
with the news of the death of both Robinson and
Cushman, that of the former at Leyden, March 1,
1625, and reported that he had hired one hundred
and fifty pounds at fifty per cent., which he had ex-
pended in the most needful commodities. In the
same year Mr. Allerton went also to England with
orders " to make a composition with the adventurers
upon as good terms as he could (unto which some
way had been made the year before by Capt. Stand-
ish), but yet enjoined him not to conclude absolutely
till they knew the terms and had well considered of
them ; but to drive it to as good an issue as he could
and refer the conclusion to them." He returned in
1627, having hired two hundred pounds at thirty per
cent., and concluded the following agreement with the
adveuturers, subject to the approval of the colony :

" To all Christian people, greeting, &c. Whereas at a meet-
ing the 26th of October last post diverse and sundrie persons
whose names to the one part of these presents are subscribed in
a schedule hereunto annexed, Adventurers to New Plimouth in
New Englaud in America were oontented and agreed in consid-
eration of the sume of one thousand and eight hundred pounds
sterling to be paid (in manner and forme folloing) to sell and
make sale of all and every the stocks, shares, lands, merchan-
dise, and chatles whatsoever to the said adventurers and others,
their fellow-adventurers to New Plimouth aforesaid any way
accruing or belonging to the generalitie of the said adventurers
aforesaid ; as welt by reason of any sume or sumes of money
or merchandise at any time heretofore advertised or disbursed
by them or otherwise howsoever ; for the better expression and
setting forth of which said agreemente the parties to these
presents subscribing doe for themselves severally and as much
as in them is, grant, bargain, alien, sell, and trunsfcre all .V.
every the said shares, goods, lands, merchandise, and chatles
to them belonging as aforesaid unto Isack Allerton, one of the
planters resident at Plimouth atloresuid assigned and sent over
as agente for the rest of the planters there and to such other
planters at Plimouth atforesaid us the said Isauck, his heirs and
assignes at his or their urrivall shall by writing or otherwise
thinke tiuo to joyne or partake in the premises, their heirs k
assignes in as large, ample, and beneficiale manner and forme to
all intents and purposes as the said subscribing adventurers here
could or may doe or performe. All which stocks, shares, lands,
ttc, to the 9aid advonturers In severallitie alloted, apportioned or
any way belonging the said adventurers doe warrant & defend
unto the said Isaack Allerton, his heirs A assignes, against them
their heirs and assignes, by these presents. And thorefore the
said Isaack Allerton doth for him, his heirs and assigns, cov-
enant, promise, and grant too and with the adventurers whose
Dames are hereunto subscribed, their heirs «fcc., well & truly to
puy or cause to be payed unto the said adventurers, or five of
them which were at the meeting atforsaid nominated & de-
puted, viz., John Pooock, John Beauchamp, Robort Keane,
Edward Basse, and James Sberley, merohauts, their heirs, «fcc,



too and for the use of the generallitie of them the suuic of
eighteen hundred pounds of lawful) money uf England at the
place appoynted for the receipts of money on the west side of
the Royall Exchaing in London by two hundred pounds yearly
and every year on the feast of St. Migchell, the first paiment
to be made Anno 1828, Ac. Allso, the said Isaack is to endeavor
to procure Jt obtaine from the planters of Now Plimouth afore-
said securitie by severall obligations or writings obligatory to
make paiment of the said sume of eighteen hundred pounds in
forme atforsaid, according to the true meaning of these presents.



Online LibraryD. Hamilton (Duane Hamilton) HurdHistory of Plymouth County, Massachusetts : with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men (Volume 2) → online text (page 21 of 118)