Monday, July 06, 2009


On 4Jul 1690 my 8x great grandfather Simon Stone wasn't having a very good day
but displayed amazing tenacity which Cotton Mather pointed to as an example of
why one should never despair. Author Samuel Green quoted Mather in a book published
in 1883:

"Cotton Mather mentions, in his Magnalia, a few instances of" mortal wounds upon the
English not proving mortal," and gives the case of an inhabitant of this town who was
in a garrison at Exeter, New Hampshire, when that place was assaulted, July 4, 1690.
He says : —

`It is true, that one Simon Stone being here Wounded with Shot in Nine several places,
lay for Dead (as it was time !) among the Dead. The Indians coming to Strip him,
attempted with Two several Blows of an Hatchet at his Neck to cut off his Head, which
Blows added you may be sure, more Enormous Wounds unto those Port-holes of Death,
at which the Life of the poor Man was already running out as fast as it could. Being
charged hard by Lieutenant Bancroft they left the Man without Scalping him; and the
English now coming to Bury the Dead, one of the Soldiers perceived this poor Man to
fetch a Gasp ; whereupon an Irish Fellow then present, advised 'em to give him another
Dab with an Hatchet, and so Bury him with the rest. The English detesting this Barbarous
Advice, lifted up the Wounded Man, and poured a little Fair Water into his Mouth at
which he Coughed ; then they poured a little Strong Water after it, at which he opened
his Eyes. The Irish Fellow was ordered now to hale a Canoo ashore to carry the Wounded
Men up the River unto a Chirurgeon; and as Teague was foolishly pulling the Canoo
ashore with the Cock of his Gun, while he held the Muzzle in his Hand, his Gun went off
and broke his Arm, whereof he remains a Cripple to this Day: But Simon Stone was
thoroughly Cured, and is at this Day a very Lusty Man; and as he was Born with Two
Thumbs on one Hand, his Neighbours have thought him to have at least as many Hearts
as Thumbs.' (Book VII. page 74.)

Many families who have lived in Groton trace back their line of descent to this same
Simon Stone, who was so hard to kill, and to whom, fortunately, the finishing " Dab
with an Hatchet" was not given."-

Green, Samuel A., Groton During the Indian Wars, Groton, Ma. 1883 pp56-57

The astonishing thing to me reading this today is how Simon Stone wasn't accused of
being a witch, given the two thumbs and his amazing recovery!

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