Tuesday, April 07, 2015


Continuing the testimony in the trial of my ancestor Thomas Tucke charged with stealing
a church bell from the yard of Richard More: 

Capt. William Dixcy deposed that soon after the taking of the forts, Capt. Lawthrop signified by letter to them that he had procured a bell for their meeting-house and had sent it home by Capt. More. He, with others, went to Capt. More who asked if they had a bill of lading or an order from the General. They not having either, he refused to let them have it. Sworn in court.

Capt. William Dixcy, aged seventy-two years, testified that soon after the return of Major Sedgwick from St. John's and Port Royall, the latter, with Major Leverett, being in company on a journey from the eastward to Boston happened to come into deponent's house. They sat down and discoursed there a while and among other things Major Leverett asked "mee what our towns name was. I answered him that wee weer no town as yet: then sayd hee you may do well to lett Major Sedgwick haue the honor of nameing the town when it is made a town for he hath giuen Captain Lawthrop a bell for your place and this to the best of my Remembrance was before wee had any notice giuen us of it any other way." Sworn in court.

Joshua Hobart certified at Boston, Oct. 18, 1679, that he, living at Bass river when the French forts were, by Major Robert Sedgwick, reduced to English obedience, there was a bell at Capt. Richard More's of the spoils, and which in his absence was taken away, etc. Wit: Joshua Hobart* and Isaac Pepper.* Sworn, Oct. 18, 1679, before Joshua Hobart,* commissioner.

Jeremy Hobart* testified to the same, 25 :9 : 1679, before Edm. Batter,* commissioner in Salem.
John Dodge, jr., aged about forty years, and Nathaniel Hayward, aged about thirty-seven years, deposed that being in company with Capt. More about two years ago he told them that the bell which is at Beverly was for Capt. Lowtrop but, said More, "you beuerly men did steal ye bell in yt you took ye bell without order when I was not at home." Sworn in court.

Nathaniell Sharpe, aged about thirty-five years, deposed that he saw some Beverly men take the bell out of More's yard and Thomas Tuck and Thomas Pigdon were two of them. Joshua Ward affirmed the same. Sworn in court.

Georg Stanly, aged about forty-four years, testified that about the time that Salem new meeting house was built, "I being in company with Captain Lawthrop, Capt More and Capt. Joseph Gardner at Capt. Gardners hous I heard Capt. Gardner say to Captain Lawthrop I think said he wee must haue your Bell for our meeting hous is bigger than yours and your bell is bigger than ours I think wee may doe well to change bells. Captain Lawthrop Replyed hee knew no need of that our bell said hee is very well where it is, the bell was giuen to mee for the place where now it is: Captain More answered him that allthough the bell weere giuen to you yet said hee I dont know but I might haue kept the bell as well as you for I brought it home and I neuer gaue a bill of lading for it neither was I euer paid for the freight of it. Captain Lawthrop answered Captain More that hee might haue kept such and such things naming seuerall things as well as the bell for I had no more bill of lading to show for them said hee then for the Bell: Come Come said Captain Mor let us drink up our wine and say no more of it I supose wee shall neuer trouble you for none of them." Sworn in court.

Anthony Needam, aged about forty-eight years, deposed that he was a soldier under Major Sedgwick and heard Capt. Lawthrop ask for a bell for the new meeting house in the plantation where he dwelt. Deponent heard Capt. Lawthrop ask again at Port Royal when Major Sedgwick was standing in the fort and he gave him the bell in the friary, deponent and Capt. Lawthrop throwing it down to the ground. Then deponent and others took it down to Capt. Moor's ketch to ship home. Sworn in court

John Floyd testified that he was at the taking of the French forts, etc. Sworn in court. 

 Records and Files of the Quarterly Courts of Essex County, Massachusetts, Volume 7 (Google eBook) 1678-1680  Salem, Ma. 1919

I'll have a few thoughts about all this in the third post in this series.

1 comment:

Marian Burk Wood said...

I've really been enjoying your posts about this testimony! Thanks for sharing.