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The Robinson Family

Genealogical and Historical



Officers, Constitution and 'Syi-LaivSt Historical Sketches
of Early Robinson Emigrants to America,
Illustrations, Armorial Bearings, \
Members of Association


J 902

Illustrations by Frank P. Curley, New York.
Printed by Frank C. Afferton, New York,




Ofkicers, - - . -

Constitution, . . . .

By-Laws, - -> - -

Introduction, . . - .

Order ok ihe Day, . . _

Incrkask Robinson, Senior, -
Rev. John Robinson, Leyden,
Thomas Robinson, Guilford,
Fenniman Family, . _ .

Heraldry, . . . .

Robinson — -Early F^migrants to America,
Members Names, ...




- 7-8

- Q-I4

- 27-30

- 38-47

- 61-98


Daniel W. Robinson, Esq., . . .

Deed of Increase Robinson, - - -

JosiAH Robinson House, - - - _

Rev. John Robinson House, Leyden, Hol.,

Tower St. Peter's Church, Leyden, Hol.,

Samuel Robinson House, Guilford, Conn.,

A<Ross the Seas, - - - - .

Cakved Oaken Chest, 1682,

Oaken Chair, . . . . .

Penniman-Robinson. - - - .

Okmsby Church, - - - . .

Penmman-Adams Cottagj<:s, - - - ■

Robinson Coat ny Arms in Colors,

Armorial Hearings, . - . .

House of George Robinson, Senior, 1660,

Mrs. Sarah Robinson Atherton,

Moving the " Hack Log,"

Deed of George Robinson, 1718,

Robinson Crest, 1725,

Rowland E. Robinson,

House of Rowland E. Robinson,

Mrs. Sarah Robinson, - - - -

John on ihe Hill, - - - . .

Excavaitons Ai' Nippur,






- 36



between pages 60-61


- 63

- 69

- 78

orncEKS OF the association.


DANIEL W. ROBINSON. Esa, Burlington, Vt.


Hon. Gifford S. Robinson,
Mr, Increase Robinson,
James H. Dean, Esq.., .
Hon, David I. Robinson,
Prof. William H. Brewer,
Mr. Roswell R. Robinson,
Capt. Charles T. Robinson,
Rev. William A. Robinson, D. D
Mr. John H. Robinson.
Mr. Charles F. Robinson, .
Mr. George W. Robinson. .
Franklin Robinson, Esq.,

Sioux City, la.

Waterville, Me.

Taunton, Mass.

. Gloucester, Mass.

New Haven, Conn.

Maiden, Mass.

Taunton, Mass.

Middletown, N. Y.

Boston, Mass.

North Ravnham, Mass.

Elburn, III.

Portland, Me.


Miss Adelaide A. Robinson, . . North Raynham, Mass.


Mr. N. Bradford Dean,

Taunton, Mass.


Mr. Charles E. Robinson, .

Yonkers, N. Y.

Mr. Increase Robinson,
Mr. Orlando G. Robinson,
Dr. a. Sumner Dean, .
Mr. Fred W. Robinson,
Mr. Bethuel Penniman,

. Plymouth, Mass.

Raynham, Mass.

Taunton, Mass.

Boston, Mass.

New Bedford, Mass.


1. The name of this association shall be The Robinsox
Family Genealogical and Historical Association.

2. The purpose for which it is constituted is the collection,
compilation and publication of such data and information as may
be obtained concerning the Robinson Families.

3. Any person connected with the descendants of
William' Robinson of Dorchester, Mass.,

- George' of Rehoboth, Mass.,
William' of Watertown, Mass.,

Isaac- of Barnstable, Mass., son of Rev. John', of Ley-
den, Hoi.,
Abraham' of Gloucester, Mass.,
George' of Boston, Mass.,
John' of Exeter, N. H.,
Stephen' of Dover, N. H.,
Thomas' of Scituate, Mass.,
James' of Dorchester, Mass.,
William of Salem, Mass.,
Christopher of Virginia,
Samuel of New England,
Gain of Plymouth,,
John Robinson of Cape Elizabeth, Me.,
Patrick Robinson of Norton, Mass.,
Daniel Robin.son of Foxborough, Mass.,

or any other Robinson ancestor, by descent or marriage, may
become a member of this association.

There shall be a membership fee of one dollar, and an
annual due of twenty-five cents, or ten dollars for life member-
ship, subject to no annual dues.

4. The officers of the association shall be a President,
twelve Vice-Presidents, a Secretary, a Treasurer, Historio-
grapher, and an Executive Committee of five.


1 . The President shall preside at all business meetings of
the Association, and in his absence a Vice-President shall per-
form the duties of President.

2. The vSecretary shall keep the records and minutes of the

3. The Treasurer shall receive all monies of the As.sociation.
He shall have the custody of all the funds belonging to the Asso-
ciation. He shall disburse the same under the direction of the
Executive Committee.

4. The Executive Committee shall have the control of the
affairs of the Association and its property', and shall receive for
safe custody all documents entrusted to them. It shall be their
duty to make arrangements to obtain all data and information
concerning the descendants of the aforesaid Robin.son ancestors
f(jr the purpose of compilation and publication of the same. The
officers of the Association shall be ex-officio memljers of the
Executive Committee.

5. The members of the Executive Conunittee present at any
regularly notified meeting shall form a quorum. They may fill
any vacancies that may occur in the board of officers until others
are regularly appointed.


The formation of a society for the collection and preservation
of family records and historical information relating to the Rob-
insons, who were early emigrants to America, and their descend-
ants, was a favorite theme for years with, at least, one of the
enthusiasts of this Association. Through his efforts the late
Hon. George D. Robinson, Ex-Governor of Massachusetts, and
his brother Charles, president of the Law School at Cambridge,
Mass., and Charles Robinson, Esq., of Medford, Mass., an Ex-
Consul to Canada, with others became interested. Had the
gentlemen named lived, doubtless an association would have been
inaugurated several years earlier, but the sudden and untimely
death of Mr. Robinson of Medford, followed shortly after b\-
that of Ex-Governer Robinson, and a little later on by that of
his brother, so dampened the ardor of their associates as to lead
to an abandonment of active measures for the promotion of the

Somewhat less than two years ago it devolved upon Miss
Adelaide A. Robinson, of North Raynham, Mass., to revive the
subject. In conversation with a few of her friends, members of
the Old Colony Historical Society, she was encouraged to take
active measures, for a family meeting of the descendants of her
ancestor. Increase Robinson of Taunton, one of the first settlers
of that town. She interested Mr. James E. Seaver, the genial
secretary of that society, in her project and then set herself at
work to enthuse the descendants of Increase in her plan.

A little later on, upon learning that other descendants, in
other lines of the Robinsons would join, if the call was made
broad enough to include them, it was decided to enlarge the scope
of the proposed association and embrace all Robinsons, as now
set forth in the third article of the Constitution of this Society.

Several meetings were held which resulted in the selection
of a committee consisting of James H. Dean, Esq., as chairman,
Mr. N. B. Dean, and Dr. A. Sumner Dean, all of Taunton, and
Mr. Orlando G. Robinson, of Raynham, to co-operate with Miss
Robin.son and Mr. Seaver in the advancement of the scheme
which culminated on the i8th of July, 1890, in one of the largest
family gatherings ever convened in the old colony. It was the


attendance of representatives from thirteen States ; an outstretch-
ing of the arm of the West to grasp the extended hand of the East;
a cordial uniting of the North and South in fraternal kinship.

As was remarked by one of the delegates ' ' Robinson stock
is good stock, there is no skeleton hanging from our genealogical

History has no dangerous side for us. We are not in the
temper of the piqued divine who saw in his ancestry — Alas!
what did he see? which led him to say "History has its
dangerous side. When men become so absorbed in the history
of their ancestry as to forget their present duties, or to be blind
to their ancestral weaknesses, it is harmful. If men are so
anxious to get on record that they forget to do things worthy of
record then the historic sense is not good sense."

Verily, verily, none of these things trouble us. We can
contribute the records of our ancestors in all its fulness to the
present and future generations, righteously believing that we are
doing that which is uwrthy of record and that our — historic se?ise
is good sense.

It is hoped that every member of this Association will
communicate immediately with the secretary expressing their
views regarding the time and place for our next meeting. We
desire to see a large attendance and increasing interest in these
matters which we have so much at heart.

The historiographer earnestly appeals to every member of
this Association who has not already conmiunicated to him their
line of ancestry, to do so without delay that it may be included
in the genealogical work which he hopes to soon publish. This
request is also made to all those of Robin.son blood who have
descended from an ancestor who came to America previous to the
year 1700. Record blanks will be furnished free on application.

Those who are in doubt as to their line of descent may
obtain valuable information from this source.

Members will please report to the Secretary any errors in
names or addresses that they may be corrected. It is also import-
ant that the full name be given, and in the case of married
females, the surname as well as the maiden name should be

The post office address of the Secretary is North Raynham,
Mass., that of the Historiographer, Yonkers, N. Y., or New
York Citv, N. Y.


Ill arranging for the Robinson Family Meeting the Old
Colony Historical Society of Taunton, Mass., cordially extended
the freedom of their hall on Cedar Street, accompanied with the
suggestion that it would give them pleasure if the meeting could
be held in conjunction with their quarterly meeting on the i 8th
of July. This generous offer was thankfully accepted.

The hour of the meeting of the Historical Society was at
half past nine in the morning. A large assembh- convened. After
a half hour spent in the transaction of the regular business of
the Society an address of welcome to the Robinson Association
was delivered by the president of the Society, Rev. vS. Hopkins
Kmery, D. D., of Taunton, in these words : —

"Members of Old Coloin- Historical Society and Visiting
Friends :

" Taunton, through this society, has been the honored host of
several family meetings, the first, which led the list, being very
properly that of the descendants of Richard Williams, who more
than any other is entitled to the honorable distinction of Father
of the town. This large gathering of to-day is unique and un-
precedented, inasmuch as it includes the descendants not only of
William Robinson of Dorchester and his son Increase of Taunton,
but those of George of Rehoboth; William of Watertown; Isaac
of Duxbury, .son of the distinguished John, pastor of the Pilgrim
church of Ley den; Aljraham of Gloucester; George of Water-
town; John of Kxeter, New Hampshire; Stephen of Dover, of
the same State ; Thomas of Scituate ; James of Dorchester ;
William of Salem; Christopher of \'irgiiiia; Samuel of New Eng-
land, and Gain Robinson of Bridgewater, Mass.

"With such a multitudinous ancestry, the wonder is, this hall
can hold the progeny. In behalf of this society, and I hope it is
not presuming too much to say, in behalf of this city, I extend
to you all a most cordial welcome. W^e would have you feel
entirely at home in this Historical hall. You are among friends
— yes, kindred spirits. Your meeting is born of the desire, in


which we all share, to trace relationship and hallow the memory
of an honored ancestry. May you Ije prospered in your good
endeavors and go hence with only a pleasant remembrance of
Taunton, one of the many towns of New England."

After a short recess the organization of the Robinson family
was effected by the choice of the following named as temporary
officers: — James H. Dean, Esq., of Tauiiton, as president and
Miss Adelaide A. Robinson as secretar-s'.

Mr. Dean addressed the members briefly, touching upon the
history of the Robin.son family and outlining the purposes of the
meeting and of the organization to be formed.

It was announced that, after the formal and permanent
organization, the as.sociation wtndd take cars for Dighton Rock
Park where dinner would be .served, to be followed by exercises
of an historical nature.

On motion duly seconded, the following were appointed a
conunittee to draw up a .set of by-laws and report the same to the
assembled members : Charles E. Robinson of Yonkers, N. Y. ;
N. Bradford Dean of Taunton, and William E. Rol)inson of Glou-
cester, Mass. Also a committee on permanent organization was
appointed consisting of E. D. Cole of Newburyport, Mass., Elmer
D. Robinson of Judson, Mass., George W. Penniman of Fall
River, Mass.

During the absence of the connnittees letters were read from
Mrs. vSarah Robin.son Atherton a lady of more than one-hundred
years of age, a resident of Peru, Huron County, Ohio. The
letter bore her own signature and was in words: —

Peru, Huron County, Ohio.

"To the Robinsons gathered at Taunton, Mass., July i8th,

' ' Greeting : Although I am getting on somewhat in years,
being past ni}' one hundredth ])irthday .since June first, I am in
full sympathy with your meeting and am glad that I have lived
to see this day of your gathering. If it so pleases your body, I
would like my name to be enrolled in the book of members of
3'our as.sociation. I am 6th in line of descent from George Rob-
in.son, Sen., of Rehoboth, Mass., viz. — George (i); John (2);
Jonathan (3): Jonathan (4); Noah (5).

(Signed) Sarah Robinson Atherton."


■ Also the following from Charles H. Robinson, Esq., of
Great Falls, Mont. :—

" Great Falls, Mont. 222-4 Ave. N.. July 8, 1900.

"To all of Robinson name and blood in Family meeting
a.ssembled :

" Greeting : From the shadows of the Rocky Mountains, by
the Great Falls of the Missouri; a descendant of Rev. John Rob-
inson, the Leyden pastor sends to }ou sympathy and congratu-
lations. ' One touch of nature makes the whole world kin ' and
a common interest in honorable ancestry should bring us into
sympathy however distant the tie of common blood.

Again I greet you

In cordial sympathy,

(Signed) Charles H. Robinson."

Other letters were read from Hon. Gifford S. Robinson,
Judge cf the Supreme Court of Iowa ; from Al)ner S. Merrill,
Esq., of Boston, Mass.; from Miss Kate D. Robinson, of Mem-
phis Tenn., and J. Newton Peirce of Boston.

Prof. William H. Brewer, of New Haven, Conn., addressed
the members in his well known happy vein. He thought the
person unfortunate who had no interest in his heredity ; that
everyone needed all the data that they could obtain in relation to
their ancestry in order that they might make the most of their
own life.

Interesting addresses were also made by the Rev. S. E.
Rowland, of Eee, Mass., and others.

The committee on the Constitution and By-Eaws made their
report which was adopted.

It was voted that Mrs. Sarah Robinson Atherton of Peru,
Ohio, be elected an Honorary Member of the Association.

The committee on permanent organization reported the fol-
lowing nominations :



Daniel. W. Robinson, Esq., Burlington Vt.

Vice Presidents,

Judge Gifford vS. Robinson,
Mr. Increase Robinson,
James H. Dean, Esq.,
Hon. David I. Robinson,
Prof. William H. Brewer,
Mr. Roswell R. Robinson,
Capt. Charles T. Robinson,
Rev. William A. Robinson,
Mr. John H. Robinson,
Mr. Charles F. Robinson,
Mr. George W. Robinson,
Franklin Robinson, Esq.,

Sioux City, la.

Waterville, Me.

Taunton, Mass.

Gloucester, Mass.

New Haven, Conn.

Maiden, Mass.

Taunton, Mass.

Middletown, N. Y.

Boston, Mass.

North Raynham, Mass.

Elburn, 111.

Portland, Me.

Miss Adelaide A. Rol)inson. North Ravnham, Mass.

N. Bradford Dean, Esq., Taunton, Mass.

Charles E. Rol)inson, Yonkers, N. Y.

Executive Committee,
Mr. Increase Robinson,
Mr. Orlando G. Robinson,
Dr. A. Sumner Dean,
Mr. Fred'k W. Robinson,

Plymouth, Mass.

Raynham, Mass.

Taunton, Mass.

Boston, Mass.

Mr. Bethuel Penniman,

New Bedford, Mass.

The report was accepted and the secretary was authorized to
cast a vote for the list reported by the committee, and they were
declared the duly elected officers of the Robinson Family Ge-
nealogical and Historical Association.

The president was escorted to the Chair and in a few well
chosen words addressed the members expressing his appreciation


of the honor of serving as the first officer of such an association
of men and women.

A committee made np of Miss Bertha L. Dean of Taunton,
Miss Hannah Ma}' Dean of Taunton, Helen W. Robinson
of North Raynham, Miss Marie Robinson of Taunton, Miss
Grace F. Dean of Taunton, and Mrs. Sarah Waterman of Taun-
ton, busied itself with the registration of names of those desiring
to become members of the association.

The reception committee was one of the most active of the
da}', and it accomplished much in making the members acquainted
with each other, and preventing too great a degree of formalitj'
in the proceedings, the intention l)eing to have a distinctively
family gathering at which all should feel at home with the other
members of the family. This committee was made up of Mrs.
Julia i\. Robinson of Taunton, Mrs. Frank Robinson of Hast
Taunton, Mrs. Herbert E. Hall of Taunton, Sarah G. Rob-
inson of Middleborough, Miss Phoebe Robinson of Taunton, Mr.
John D. Robin.son of Taunton, Dr. A. Sumner Dean of Taunton,
Mr. Orlando G. Robinson of Judson, Mass., and Mr. John C.
Robin.son of Middlel)orough, Mass.

A vote of thanks was extended to the Old Colony Historical
vSociety for their kind offer of the freedom of their hall for this
first meeting of this association ; also to Mr. James E. Seaver,
their cordial Secretary, and Miss Adelaide A. Robinson of North
Raynham, by whose joint efforts the organization of the associa-
tion has been expedited in a marked degree.

The formal exercises in Historical Hall were then brought
to a close and adjounnnent taken for the trip of eight miles, in
special electric cars, down the banks of the Taunton River to
Dighton Rock Park where an excellent "shore dinner," for
which '■ Little Rhody " is so famous, was served and enjo^'ed by
the members, after which came the literary entertainment of the
day which consisted of historical papers by Charles Edson Rob-
inson of Vonkers, N. Y. , an Historical Sketch of the Robinsons,
early emigrants to America ; by James H. Dean, Esq., of Taun-
ton, Mass., on Increa,se Robinson ; by Rev. William A. Robinson,
D. D. of Middletown, N. Y., on Rev. John Robinson of Leyden ;
by Mary Gay Robinson of Guilford, Conn., on Thomas Rob-
inson ; and by the Rev. George W. Penniman, of Southbridge,
Mass. , on the Penniman-Robinson familv.


Owing to a want of time the paper prepared Ijy James H.
Dean, Esq., was omitted, 1)ut is here inserted on page 15.

At the close of the reading of the historical papers, Mr.
George W. Penniman of Fall River, Mass., was invited by the
president to address the assembly. In his remarks Mr. Penni-
man held the attention of all present in an able and entertaining

This closed the exercises of the day with an invitation from
Miss Adelaide A. Robinson for all the members to meet at eight
o'clock at her residence in North Raynham, asuburl) of Taunton,
for a lawn party. Arrangements for special cars were made
for all who desired to attend.

The meeting was then adjourned sine die.

The evening at the residence of Miss Robinson was a most
enjoyable affair. The extensive lawn was brilliantly lighted with
locomotive headlights and Ja[)anese lanterns. Xye's Taunton
Orchestra discoursed sweet music. \'isitnig members as they
arrived were received under an artistic arch of vines and flowers.
Tables of refreshments bountifully loaded were spread under the

At the close of the entertainment two .special cars came up
from Taunton co bear awa}^ the branches of the Robinson genea-
logical tree.

Thus ended the first gathering of the Robin.son Family
Genealogical and Historical Association, with an expression of
gratitude on e\-er}- lip to those who had contributed so much
for their enjojnnent.



By Ja.^iks H. Dkax, Esq.

S( ) far as known Increase Robinson was the first
person bearing the name of Robinson who settled in
Taunton. He was the second son of Wilhani and
Margaret Robinson who came, it is thought, from
Canterbury, England, in 1637 and settled in Dor-
chester. Nothing whatever is known of the parent-
age or Inrthplace of this William Robinson. Nor is
it known in what ship he came or the exact date of
his arrival. His name first appears as a member of
the church in Dorchester in a list of those belonging to that
church November 4, 1639. He was made a Freeman of the town
May 18,1642, and the following year was made a mendjer of the
" Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company " of Boston.

His first recorded purchase of real estate was February 25,
1651, when he bought of John Phillips of Boston for /,i50 an
estate in Dorchester ' ' near unto Naponsett River ' ' with the
dwelling house, outhouses, barns, gardens and orchards, together
with several adjacent and outlying parcels of upland and meadow,
in all 73 acres. He owhed and operated a corn water-mill on
" Tidemill Creeke, standing on the tide in the creeke commonly
called Salt Creeke or Brooke, near Captaines Neck." In this
mill he met his death, as recorded in the Diary of the Rev. John
Eliot in Roxbury Church Records : " Died 6, 5, 1668, Robinson,
a brother of ye church at Dorchester, was drawn through by 3-e
cog wheel of his mill and was torn in pieces and slain."

He had by his wife Margaret, four children, two sons and
two daughters.

1. vSamuel, baptised June 14, 1640.

2. Increase, l)aptised ]\Iarch 14, 1642. Against his name on
the record appears in parenthesis (went to Taunton ).


3. Prudence, baptised Dec. 1643.

4. Waiting, baptised April 26, 1646.

He married a second wife, Ursula, widow of Samuel Hosier.
Of this marriage there was no issue. His w'ife Ursula survived

He left a will which was allowed July i, 1668. The larger
part of his real estate he gave to his oldest son Samuel. To his
son Increase, he gave four acres of salt marsh, several parcels of
upland, "and halfe of all m}' common rights I have in Dor-
chester and that with what I have already given him to bee his
portion." He also gave "my sonn Increase eldest sonn that
bears my name," twenty shillings. Administration was granted
to his son Increase, his son-in-law John Bridge husband of Pru-
dence, and his son-in-law Joseph Penniman husband of Waiting.

Increase Robinson, of whom I am to speak particularly,
married, February 19, 1663, vSarah Penniman who was born May
6, 1641. She w^as the daughter of James and Lj'dia (Eliot)
Penniman of Braintree. Lydia Eliot was a sister of John Eliot
the Apostle to the Indians. How long the young couple re-
mained in Dorchester before coming to Taunton to live w^e have
no means of telling with exactness. It was but a very few years
however, for as early as 1668 we find him interested as a pur-
chaser of real estate in Taunton and vicinity. In June of that
year a very important purchase w^as made of lands that had been
previously bought of the Indians on behalf of the colony. This
purchase was called The Taunton North Purchase. The con-
veyance was made by a committee of the Plj-mouth Government
to a large number of persons, "Proprietors of the Towm of
Taunton," among whom we find Increase Robinson. This

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