Saturday, November 15, 2014


A few years back I posted about the question of the identities of the parents of
Lydia (Phelps) West, my 5x great grandmother. The original information I had
was that she was the daughter of Jonathan Phelps and Beulah Parker of Groton,
Massachusetts. Then seven years ago I found this:

"My father was John Ames, who was born in Groton, Mass., and
mother was Lydia Phelps, who was born in Hollis, Mass... When
father married second wife, the widow of Sampson Read, she had
three children, Sampson, Lydia and Amy, then children by John
Ames were: John, Jonathan, Zekiel, Polly, Betsey, and Ralph;
all born in Groton, Mass., except Ralph, who was in Merrimac,
Mass., and myself in Hollis." --Aunt Betsey Putnam, as told to Axel
H. Reed, Genealogy, p. 17.

"Lydia Phelps, my mother, was of Scottish decent [sic], whose
parents were born in Scotland, and from whom the Reads got
their light eyes, so father Ames used to say."
--Aunt Betsey Putnam, as told to Axel H. Reed, Genealogy, p. 17.

((The source for the quotes is: "Genealogical Record of The Reads,
Reeds, the Bisbees, the Bradfords of the United States of America"
in the line of Esdras Read of Boston and England, 1635 to 1915.
Thomas Besbedge or Bisbee of Scituate, Mass. and England, 1634
to 1915. Governor William Bradford, of Plymouth, Mass., and
England, 1620 to 1915."
By Axel Hayford Reed, Glencoe, MN,
1915. I found them here at “The Ancestry of Overmire, Tifft, Richardson,
Bradford, Reed,” by Larry Overmire, RootsWeb World Connect Project,

On the strength of that I unlinked Jonathan Phelps and Beulah Paker as Lydia's
parents because their families had been in Massachusetts for nearly a century
before Lydia's birth. But I didn't remove them or their families from my database
until I found more definite proof one way or the other . Then a few months back
the NEHGS added the Middlesex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1648-1871 
images to their American Ancestors and I started searching there for for the probate
files belonging  to my Middlesex County ancestors. One of the names I searched
for was Jonathan Phelps.

What I found there and one other place has I think settled the question of who
Lydia Phelps' parents were for me.

To be continued

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