Thursday, July 16, 2015


I'm in a number of New England  genealogy groups on FB. A member in one of them posted a link to a Find A Grave memorial of a common ancestor, John Hoyt, and asked a question about his wife, Frances Tuxbury. This led me to do a Google search....which led to a link to a book collection of Essex County Court Files on Googlebooks....which led to a case that starts out with a letter with the most tortured phrasing in the opening.

John Hoyt and Frances (Tuxbury) Holt are my 9x great grandparents, but the court case I discovered was about a Thomas Tuxbury, who I believe to be the brother of Frances. By the way, the name is spelled in various ways, the most common being Tewksbury.

Let's start with that convoluted letter, written to the Court by Constable Robert Pike in September

"Much Honrd                                 Salisbury ___pt. ye 22, 1674

"Sr These Lins ar (being sencibl som blame Justly be charged for psuming to give you the trouble of this busnes) to excus it: the cheef cause was that his casse referring to the breach of Law in living from his wif: was with you alredy: & he dwell in your county & himself & neibours much desiring he might therfor com befor yor self rather then ye court: & on the other sid considering if you saw not Reson to Isu it you coold soon bind him either to your court or ours I hoped it might be excusible

"I haue hear inclosed his bond of appearanc Georg Marten & J Jemsons complaint & their declarasion which consists of Fower pticlers — The first the sd Tusbury do not seem to owne before me: the 2d he owned and sayd it was to see his Low condision by it as an adision to all his other aflictions: the 3d he owned & sayd it was accasioned by words of Richard martns spoke first to yt purpos The 4th he also owned but sayd it was to com about som lawfull bisnes then in hand about the land yt sd Thomas Tuksbury all These wear owned by him before me

"I haue sent all the evidences that I haue taken in the Case which will expect pay som whear and also the constibl for serving them & the complainer which I pray remember to order if the case be ended with you: not farther troubling you at psent take Leave to subscribe my self

"Yor worships most humb servant
                "Robt Pike.

-p400 Records and Files of the Quarterly Courts of Essex County, Massachusetts, Volume 5Massachusetts. County Court (Essex County), George Francis Dow Essex Institute, 1916
- Essex County (Mass.)

Robert Pike sent witness statements along with this letter, and they help clear up what Pike
was dancing around. What Thomas Tuxbury was being accused of was adultery and attempted
bigamy, and there's a lady's bosom and unrequited love mixed up in it as well.Also involved
are some of my other ancestors.

And you'll have to wait for the next part for the details of the "Fower pticlers"

To be continued.

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