Ellery Bicknell Crane.

Historic homes and institutions and genealogical and personal memoirs of Worcester county, Massachusetts, with a history of Worcester society of antiquity (Volume 2) online

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Lynn in 1638, and he probably lived their earlier
with her. He was a townsman in Dedham in 1648.
He left there in 1652 or 1653 and his name appears
soon on the records of the church at Reading, Massa-
chusetts, and it is presumed without evidence that
he lived there. He hired a five hundred acre farm
of Samuel Bennett in what is now Saugus, adjoin-
ing Reading, and the Reading church was nearest to
this farm. He was not a proprietor of Reading, but
his son, Thomas Bancroft, who lived in Reading,
became a very prominent citizen. The Bancroft
place, as it is still called, is just south of the Straits,
a narrow roadway through the rocky hills leading
from Reading to Saugus. The survey of the line be-
tween Lynn and Charleston, made about 1670, men-
tions the "house that was Ensign Bancroft's." In
1670 he bought seventy acres of land at Lynnfield,
three miles easterly from the Reading church, which
was still the nearest for him to attend. In 1678
the deed of the adjoining Holyoke farm recites "that
it had been for some years in possession and im-
provement of Thomas Bancroft and a half acre with
building thereon was reserved and deeded to Ban-
croft."

Lieutenant Bancroft died at Lynn, August 19,
1691. The inventory of his estate was filed No-
vember 24. 1691, by his son Ebenezer. It shows that
he owned land at Reading and Lynn, etc. An agree-
ment for a division of the estate was made between
the widow Elizabeth ; sons Thomas, John and Eben-
ezer ; Joseph Brown, husband of the daughter Eliza-
beth ; and Sarah Bancroft, the youngest daughter.
The widow Elizabeth died May I. 171 1.

He married (first) Alice Bacon, daughter of
Michael Bacon, of Dedham. March 31, 1647-48. She
died March 29, 1648. He married (second), August
ii — 16



IS, 1648, Elizabeth Metcalf, daughter of Michael and
Sarah Metcalf. She was admitted to the church
December 14, 1651, at Dedham, and November 22,
1669, at Reading, by letter from Dedham. The only
child of Thomas and Alice was : Thomas. The
•children of Thomas and Elizabeth Bancroft were :
Elizabeth, born and died 1650; John, born February
3, 1651-52, married Elizabeth Bacon; Elizabeth, born
at Reading, December 7, 1653, married Joseph
Browne; Sarah, born 1660, died 1661 ; Raham, born
1662, died 1683; Sarah, born 1665, married John
Woodward; Ebenezer. born 1667, married Abigail
Eaton, resided at Lynnfield; Mary, born 1670.

(II) Thomas Bancroft, eldest son of Thomas
Bancroft (1), was born in Dedham, Massachusetts,
in 1648 or 1649. He settled in Reading and became
one of the most prominent citizens of the town. He
was an officer in the King Philip's war; was select-
man for several years. He lived in the western part
of Reading, where the old Bancroft homestead is
located. He built the fourth house in the West
Parish, near what is now called the Abraham Tem-
ple place. He married, in 1673, Sarah Poole, daugh-
ter of Jonathan and Judith Poole. The children of
Thomas and Sarah Bancroft were : Thomas, born
1673, see forward; Jonathan, born and died 1675;
Sarah, born 1676, married Abraham Bryant ; Mehita-

ble, born 1678, married Parker; Jonathan, born

1681, married Sarah , died 1702; Raham, born

1684; Judith, born 1688, married Parker; Sam-
uel, born 1691, died 1692; Samuel, born 1693; Eliza-
beth, born 1696, married, 1713.

(III) Captain Thomas Bancroft, son of Thomas
Bancroft (2), was born in Reading. Massachusetts,
1673. He settled in Reading also. He married Mary
Webster. Their children were : Thomas, see for-
ward ; Benjamin, born in Reading, married Anna
Lawrence, resided in Groton ; Jonathan, married
Alary Pierpont ; Joshua, married Mary Lamson, re-
sided in Reading and Worcester.

(IV) Thomas Bancroft, son of Captain Thomas
Bancroft (3), was born in Reading about 1705. He
married Lydia Deane, and their children were :
Thomas, born in Reading; Moses, see forward; Jo-
seph, married Elizabeth Temple, of Reading.

(V) Moses Bancroft, son of Thomas Bancroft
(4), was born about 1730. He was one of the
early settlers of Sutton, Massachusetts. He mar-
ried (first) Mary Wiley; (second) Elizabeth Lam-
son, of Weston, June 22, 1758. She was the daugh-
ter of John Lamson, who removed from Reading to
Weston in 1714, and granddaughter of Joseph Lam-
son, of Charlestown. Her mother was Elizabeth
Bancroft, of Reading. The only child of Moses and
Mary Bancroft was: Joseph, born January 13, 1756
(captain), see forward. The children of Moses and
Elizabeth Bancroft were: Elizabeth, born August
12, 1759; Mollie, born November 5, 1766; Hannah,
born December 4. 1769.

(VI) Captain Joseph Bancroft, son of Moses
Bancroft (5), was born in Sutton, January 13, 1756.
He died at Millbury, April 23, 1839, aged eighty-
three years. He was a soldier in the revolution, and
in his last years drew a pension. He was first lieu-
tenant in Captain Jesse Wyman's company. Colonel
Jacob Garrish's regiment. He was detached with
others for guards for Burgoyne's army in 1778. He
lived in Sutton. He married (first) Hannah Tainter,
September u. 1780. died November 22. 1791. He

married (second) Esther Bond, April o. 1793. He
married (third) Anna Rice, of Ward, February 10,
1815. He married (fourth), February 23. 1825, Sarah
Livermore. Children of Captain Joseph and Han-
nah Bancroft were: Simon, born June II, 1781;
Lucy, born March 16, 1783; Moses, born January 18,



242



WORCESTER COUNTY



1786. The children of Captain Joseph and Esther
Bancroft were: Wiley, born March 9, 1794; Solo-
mon, born March 15, 1796; Noley, born May 22,
1798; Hannah, born August 28, 1800; Joseph, Jr.,
born June 13, 1805, married, March 11, 1830, Louisa
Livermore. •

iYII) Solomon Bancroft, son of Captain Jo-
seph Bancroft (.6), was born in Sutton, March 15,
1706. Me settled in Millbury, where he died Novem-
ber 14, 1829, aged only thirty-three years, of convul-
sions, after an illness of only two days. He mar-
rkd Harriet Livermore, of Weston, (intentions dated
August 25, 1820). Their children were: Henry
Lewis, see forward ; Sarah Eliza, born August 3,
1823, married Benjamin Brierly, manufacturer, Jan-
uary 16, 1872, who died April 4, 1905.

(VIII) Henry Lewis Bancroft, son of Solo-
mon Bancroft (7), was born in Millbury, June 25,
1821. He was educated in the public schools of Mill-
bury. He was prominent in political affairs and
served his district two years in the state senate. He
was very prominent in Republican circles for many
years, a leading member of the Republican town, dis-
trict and county committees. He was a familiar
figure at the various party conventions for many-
years. He was always interested in the affairs in
the town of Millbury, and was associated in every
movement to improve the town as a place of resi-
dence and place of business. He had the utmost con-
fidence of his fellow citizens. He served the town
as a member of the school committee and took a
great interest in the development of the public
schools. He was for a number of years an overseer
of the poor. He was assessor of the town and
selectman for several years.

His early days were spent in Millbury on the
Greenwood farm. He attended the public schools.
He learned the trade of millwright; he kept a gen-
eral store there for many years, and he was con-
nected with the building of many of the largest mills
in the Blackstone Valley. He was a prominent and
active member of the First Congregational Church,
joining it in early life and for twenty years serv-
ing as the superintendent of the Sunday school. He
was on the church committee. Many of those in
misfortune and sorrow had reason to know of the
kindness and sympathy of Mr. Bancroft. He was
for many years one of the most prominent and re-
spected citizens of the town. His residence was on
Burbank Hill in his native town. He died June 20,
1899.

He married, April 9. 1846, at Millbury, Martha
A. Harris, who died in 1876. He married (second)
Mary M. Waters. Children of Henry L. and Martha
A. Bancroft were : Henry H., born September 1,
1847; George F., born December 4, 1851, died April
24. 1879; Charles L, born March 15, 1854, resides
in Worcester; Walter M.. born January 20, 1858,
died June 12, 1876; Joseph H., born July 14, 1862,
died July 20, l88r ; Harriet M., born April 30, 1865,
died March 1, 1882. The only child of Henry L.
and Mary M. Bancroft was : Grace L., born Feb-
ruary 7, 1887.

(IX) Henry H. Bancroft, son of Henry Lewis
Bancroft (8), was born in Millbury, Massachusetts,
September 1, 1847. He was educated there in the
public and high schools. He served in the civil war
in the Millbury Light Artillery. For many years Mr.
Bancroft was a traveling salesman; at present he is
a manufacturer at Seymour, Connecticut.

He married, November 23, 1871, Mary F. War-
field, daughter of Luther A. and Mary S. (Warner)
\\ arfield. Their children are: 1. Georgie M., born
l)<cember 5, 1878, died January 24, 1006, she was a
graduate of the Millbury public and high schools.



of the Worcester Classical high school, and of Mt.
Holyoke College in 1901. She taught school at Bra-
manville one year. She married, October 1, 1902,
Ralph W. Hawkes, of the firm of Rice, King &
Rice, attorneys at law, Worcester. They had one
child — Georgie E., born December 30, 1905. 2. Henry
L., born March 23, 1893.

REV. GEORGE A. PUTNAM. John Putnam
(1), the immigrant ancestor of Rev. George A. Put-
nam, of Millbury, Massachusetts, was the founder
of a notable American family, especially prominent
in Worcester county. Back in England the ances-
try has been traced for some centuries in various
branches of this ancient family. The home of John
Putnam in England was at Ashton Abbotts, in Buck-
inghamshire, where he was born in 1580. He died
in Salem Village, (now Danvers) Massachusetts,
December 30, 1062, aged eighty years. He was an
early settler at Salem, according to family tradition
having landed there in 1634, but the first record at
Salem was dated March 21, 1640-1, w'hen his wife
was admitted to the church, and in the same year
he received a grant of land. He was admitted
to the church April 4, 1647. He was a farmer.
His handwriting indicates a good education. He
was well off, one of the wealthy men compared
with the fortunes of his neighbors. Before his death
he gave farms to his sons John, Nathaniel and proba-
bly to the others also. John received his by deed
dated March 31, 1653. He married Priscilla (per-
haps Gould). Their children: 1. Elizabeth, bap-
tized December 20, 1612, in England. 2. Thomas,
mentioned below. 3. John, baptized July 24, 1617,
died young. 4. Nathaniel, born October II, 1619,
in England, settled in Salem ; married there Eliza-
beth Hutchinson. 5. Sarah, baptized March 7,
1022-3. 6. Phebe, baptized July 28, 1624. . 7. John,
born May 27, 1627, in England ; died April 7, 1710,
in Salem ; married, September 3, 1652, Rebecca
Prince.

(II) Thomas Putnam, son of John Putnam (1),
was born in Ashton Abbotts, England, March 5,
1614-5.- He was in Lynn in 1640, and was admitted a
freeman 1642. He joined the Salem church April 3,
1643, and became a citizen of prominence there. He
was appointed a commissioner to end small causes
in 1645, and re-appointed in 1648, served on the
grand jury 1648, and was a constable of Salem,
1655. He was one of the founders of Salem Vil-
lage (Danvers) and was parish clerk there before
the town was incorporated ; he was the first deacon
mentioned in the records, 1680-81, and for many
years was the largest taxpayer. He died at Salem.

He married first, Prudence Holyoke, from Tam-
worth, on the border of Warwickshire, England,
daughter of Edward and Prudence Holyoke, who
came from Tamworth 1630, and settled in Lynn ;
they were ancestors of President Holyoke and Dr.
Edward Holyoke, who died at Salem, March, 1829,
aged one hundred years. He married (second),
November 14, 1666, Mary Wren, widow. Children
of Thomas and Prudence Putnam: I. Ann, born
August 25, 1645; married William Trask. 2. Sarah,
baptized July 23, 1648. 3. Mary, born October 17,
1649. 4. Thomas, born March 12, 1652. 5. Edward,
mentioned below. 6. Deliverance, born September
5, 1656; married Jonathan Walcott. 7. Elizabeth,
born August 30, 1659 ; married Joshua Bayley, of
Newbury. 8. Prudence, born February 28, 1661-2,
William Wyman. The only child of Thomas and
Mary Putnam was: Joseph, born September 14,
1669.

(III) Deacon Edward Putnam, son of Thomas
Putnam (2), born in Salem Village, and baptized



WORCESTER COUNTY



243



there July 4, 1654, died there March 10, 1747. He
was no less prominent than his distinguished father.
He was admitted a freeman 1690, and became deacon
of the first church of Danvers (Salem Village ).
His farm was in that section of the town known
as Middleton. He was a man of more than ordinary
■education. He became a prominent witness in the
Salem witchcraft cases, and, like the other leaders
of the church, believed for several years in the
genuineness of the witchcraft. He was much re-
spected and honored in the town. His will was
dated March II, 1731, and proved April 11, 1748.
He married, June 14, 1681, Mary Hale. Their chil-
dren: 1. Edward, born April 29, 1682. 2. Holyoke,
born September 18, 1683; killed by the Indians at
Dunstable July 3, 1706. 3. Elisha, mentioned be-
low. 4. Joseph, born November 1, 16S7. 5. Mary,
born August 14, 1689; married January 8, 1713,
Thomas Flint, of Salem. 6. Prudence, born Janu-
ary 25, 1697; married, December 3, 1719, William
Wyman. 10. Abijah, baptized at Salem Village.
May 26, 1700; died at Lunenburg, Massachusetts,
January, 1764.

(IV) Elisha Putnam, son of Edward Putnam
(3), was born at Salem Village, November 3, 1685.
He lived and owned the place known lately as the
James Freeland farm, in Sutton, where he settled
as early as 1725. He was admitted to the Sutton
church in 1730, and was deacon in 1731. He was
town clerk, town treasurer, deputy to the general
court, and a leader in town affairs. He married
first. February 10, 1710, Hannah Marble, descendant
of Samuel Marble, progenitor of all of that name.
He married (second) February 15, 1713, Susannah,
daughter of Jonathan Fuller of Salem, and his wife
Susan (Trask) Fuller. Elisha Putnam died June

10, 1745. His widow married (second) Captain
John Sadler, of Upton, 1747; he died 1753- Chil-
dren of Elisha and Hannah Putnam: 1. Elisha, Jr.,
lorn December 2, 1715; died 1758. 2. Nehemiah,
mentioned below. 3. Jonathan, born July 19, 1721. 4.
Hannah, married Jonathan Dudley, Esq. 5. Susan-
nah, married first, Timothy Holden, February 24,
1742: married (second) John Whipple. 6. Mary,
lorn June 12, 1725; died April 22, 1736. 7. Stephen,
born April 4, 1728. 8. Amos, born July 22, 1730,
died September 17, 181 1. 9. Eunice, born July 17,
1732, died in Windham, Connecticut, unmarried. 10.
Huldah. born May 25, 1734, married Mathews.

11. Rufus (General), mentioned below.

(V) General Rufus Putnam, son of Elisha Put-
nam (4), was born in Sutton, Massachusetts, April
7, 1738. His equally famous cousin, General Israel
Putnam, was of the same family, son of Joseph
Putnam. General Rufus Putnam's father died when
"he was a young child, and in 1745 he went to Salem
Village to live with his grandfather. In 1754 he
was apprenticed to Daniel Matthews, of Brookfield,
and after that had no opportunity for schooling.
He enlisted in the French and Indian war in 1757,
and served almost all the time until 1760. Then
for seven or eight years he followed his trade of
millwright, and also farmed and surveyed land.
He learned how to survey from Colonel Timothy
Dwight, of Northampton, Massachusetts, the father
of President Dwight, of Yale College. He entered
the revolution in 1775 as a lieutenant-colonel, and
rose to the rank of brigadier-general. He had charge
of the fortifications at Roxbury and later at Dor-
chester Heights, and to his good work much of the
credit for driving the British from Boston is due.
After he married he lived in the north parish of
Brookfield from 1765 until after the revolution, when
he removed to the house of Colonel Murray, at Rut-
land, which he bought after it had been confiscated.
This place at Rutland was the one in which Senator



Hoar and other prominent antiquarians took great
interest, and which is to be kept as a memorial to
General Putnam. General Putnam was a trustee
of Leicester Academy, incorporated in 1784. He was
prominent in the suppression of Shay's Rebellion.
Ik- was a representative to the general court in
17X7. Perhaps his fame rests more upon his leader-
ship of the settlement of the state of Ohio, of which
he was virtually the founder, than even upon his
great military services throughout the revolution.
He and General Benjamin Tupper called the first
meeting and formed the Ohio Company of Asso-
ciates. He went with the first company of set-
tler-, and reached Marietta, April 7, 1788. There
he built his home and lived the rest of his days.
He became prominent in public affairs, was a promi-
nent judge and surveyor-general of the United
States. He died in 1824. He married, April, 1761,
Elizabeth, daughter of William Ayres, of Brook-
field. He married (second) Persis, daughter of
Zebulon Rice, of Westboro, Massachusetts, and had
a large family.

(V) Nehemiah Putnam, son of Elisha Putnam
(4), and ancestor of Rev. George A. Putnam, born
in Salem Village, March 22, 1719, settled in Sutton
and died there, November 27, 1791. He married
Sarah Manning, October 5, 1742. Their children :
1. Aaron, born March 23, 1744. 2. Sarah, born
March 10, 1746. 3. Hannah, born July 26. 1748;
married November 25, 1773, Jonathan Willard. 4.
Rachel, born April 17, 1750. 5. Susannah, born
January 19, 1752; married, March 26, 1771, John
Fuller. 6. Eunice, born December 4, 1753, married
Benjamin Shumway, April 4, 1773. 7. Reuben, men-
tioned below. 8-9. Joseph and Benjamin, twins,
born September 20, 1760; Benjamin married Patty
Mason ; was a soldier in the revolution.

(VI) Reuben Putnam, son of Nehemiah Put-
nam (5), born in Sutton, April 9, 1757, died June,
1797, and his will is on file at the Worcester probate
office. He was a soldier in the revolution, in Cap-
tain Bartholomew Woodbury's company, Colonel
Learned's regiment, 1775; also in Captain Nathaniel
Clapp's company, Colonel Benjamin Howe's regi-
ment, 1778, Rhode Island campaign. He married,
November 7, 1780, Elizabeth Mason. He was a
cabinet maker by trade, and was deacon of the
church in 1794.

His children: 1. Aaron, born August 29, 1781,
died February 27. 1854. 2. Jonas, born March 5,
1783. 3. Mason, born December 30, 1784. 4. Man-
ning, born April 12, 1787; saddler by trade: after-
ward a Methodist preacher of note. 5. Rufus, born
August 1, 1789. died young. 6. Rufus Austin, grad-
uate Boston University: minister Congregational
church, at Cornish, New Hampshire. 7. John Mil-
ton (baptized Polycarp), born February 24, 1794,
mentioned below. 8. John O., born July 26, 1796,
died voting.

(VII) Rev. John Milton Putnam (Polycarp),
son of Reuben Putnam (6), was born in Sutton,
Massachusetts, February 24, 1794. His father died
when he was only three years old, leaving seven
sons, none over sixteen, and one less than a year
old. It was natural that the boys should get to
work at tender ages and help carry the family
burdens. At the age of eight John Milton concluded
to do his share, and one day set out on the road to
Boston in quest of work, asking at every house.
At West Millbury he got a chance, returned to get
his mother's consent, and for the next ten years was
in the family and worked on the farm of Jonathan
Waters. Then he was assisted by friends and
enabled to go to college, graduated at Brown Uni-
versitv. and was called subsequently to a pastorate
at Ashby, Massachusetts, where he preached for five



244



WORCESTER COUNTY



years. From there he went to Epsom, New Hamp-
shire. For four years after resigning that charge
on account of trouble" with his voice from over-
work, he occupied an editorial position. When he
was again able to take up pastoral duties he settled
at Dunbarton, New Hampshire, where for thirty-
one years he was actively engaged in ministerial
work. After this long pastorate he retired. He
died at the home of his daughter at Elyria, Ohio,
August 18, 1871. January 29, 1821, he married
Arethusa, daughter of David and Lucy Brigham,
of Westboro, born October 2, 1792, died September
19, 1861. Their children were as follows: Jane
Brigham, born November 19, 1821, died September
11, 1824; Carleton Elliot, July 21, 1823, died Au-
gust 29, 1824; Milton Augustus, June 13, 1825, died
August 25, 1826 ; Antoinette Maria, October 12,
1827, died August 7, 1828; Antoinette Brigham, May
17, 1829, died August 14, 1875 ; she married Isaac
S. Metcalf, leaving nine out of twelve children that
were born to them ; Henry Milton, June 10, 1831,
•died August 25, 1850 ; he was a mason by trade ;
George Alanson, August 7, 1833, died March 31,
1834 : George Augustus, May 8. 1835, of whom later.

(VIII) Rev. George A. Putnam, son of Rev.
John Milton Putnam (7), was born at Dunbarton,
New Hampshire, May 8, 1835, and he attended the
district school there when' a boy. He prepared for
college at Kimball Union Academy of Meriden,
New Hampshire. In 1858 he was graduated at Union
College, receiving the degree of Master of Arts.
He attended the Bangor Theological Seminary of
Bangor. Maine, where he was graduated in i860.
His first pastorate was at Yarmouth, Maine,
where, from i860 to 1870, he was pastor of
the Congregational church. He was called from
there to his present charge in Millbury, Massa-
chusetts, and came to Millbury in January, 1871.
He was not installed formally, however, until April
11. 1872. In 1897, when the one hundred and fiftieth
anniversary of his church was celebrated appro-
priately attention was generally directed to his long
and highly successful pastorate. No ordinary min-
ister can hold a pastorate for thirty-five years or
more to the satisfaction of his church. Their is the
best of evidence that the ties between pastor and
people in this church have grown stronger with
each passing year. Mr. Putnam has the love as well
as the confidence, esteem and respect of his par-
ishioners. In October, 1875, Mr. Putnam went to
Europe and for a year rested and studied abroad,
his salary being continued by a generous congre-
gation. He visited Scotland, France, Italy, Egypt
and Palestine. He has devoted all his time and
attention to the duties of his office.

He married, November 12. i860, Fannie Maria
Wells, of Dedham, Maine, daughter of the Rev.
James and Jane P. (Webb) Wells. Her father was
a graduate of Bangor Theological Seminary and of
Jefferson College, Pennsylvania ; a Congregational
clergyman who was for eight years city missionary
of Bangor, Maine: then settled at Northbridge, Mas-
sachusetts: Dunbarton. Now Hampshire; and Hali-
fax and Douglas. Massachusetts, where lie died in
1892. Her mother died in 18S4 and is buried at
North Weymouth. Her only brother was Joseph S.
Wells, of Holyoke. Massachusetts. She died Au-
gust 6. 1879. Mr. Putnam married (second), June
23. 1SS1, Hannah Louisa Sabin. of Millbury.

The children of Rev. George A. and Fannie
Maria Putnam were: T. George H., born February
23, 1S65. married Mrs. Lillie Pretz. a widow with
one child, and they have three children: George A.,
born December 2, 1000. died April 7. 1902; Edith
E.. January 6, 1903 : John \\\, February 11, 1905. He



is professor in the Texas School for the Deaf at
Austin. Texas; educated at the Massachusetts Agri-
cultural College in Amherst and at Lehigh Uni-
versity in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. 2. Jennie L.,.
born September 16, 1867, is a graduate of North-
field Seminary and is a bookkeeper and stenog-
rapher. 3. Grace M., born August 30, 1S69, died
October 11, 1870. 4. Fannie May, born November
11, 1873, graduate of Northfield Seminary, married
Fred Williams and they have three children — Alma
G., born November 13. 1899; Harland P., April 5,
1903 ; Ralph Herbert, February 17. 1906. 5. Florence,
born January 2. 1876, graduate of Northfield Semin-
ary. 6. Harry W., born September 17, 1878.

SAMUEL TAFT WOOD. Thomas Wood (1),
the immigrant ancestor of Samuel Taft Wood, of
Uxbridge, Massachusetts, was born in England in
1635. He settled at Rowley, Massachusetts, and
married, April 7, 1654, Ann Hunt, of Ipswich. He-
was a man of good social position and was in-
fluential in the church. He was conspicuous in
the difficulty between the town and the minister,
Rev. Samuel Phillips. Thomas Wood was buried



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