Wednesday, April 15, 2015


While the will of Henry Herrick is missing from his probate file, the inventory of
his estate is not. I found this image of the document in the Essex County, MA: 
Probate File Papers, 1638-1881 on the website:

I found a transcription in The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674
Vol 2 :

Inventorv of the estate of Henry Herricke of Beverly, taken Mar. 15, 1670-71 by John Rayment, Sr. and Isaack Hull, Sr.: his dwelling howse wth orchard & 70 acrees of land more or lesse adjoyning to the same, 180li.; the English pasture wth the marsh & orchard in itt, 80li.; the farme bought of Mr. Allford conteining 2 hundred acres, 300li.; the farme bought of Henry & Franncis Skerry, 106 acres, 160li.; the 16 Acres of land wch is built uppon by Zakery Herrick, 32li.; the 15 Acres of land bought of Henry Reinald & Rich. Kemball, 22li. 10s.; 6 Acres of meadow in the bounds of Topsfeild, 30li.; Eleaven milch cowes, 40li., 2 oxen & 2 steires, 20li., 60li.; one horsse, 6li., 2 maires & 2 Coltes, 10li., 16li.; 32 sheepe & 17 lambes, 20li., 6 swyne, 3li., 23li.; his wearing apparrell, 7li., one bedd wth furniture, 2li., 9li.; one featherbedd & beddstedd wth the furniture belonging, 6li.; one other bedd & bedsted wth furniture theirunto, 3li.; brasse and pewter wth Earthen vessells in sundry dishes, 9li. 14s.; 3 Iron potts & other iron necissaries, 3li.; 4 bibles with other bookes, 2li.; one muskett, one sword, one rapier, one smothing iron, 2li. 5s.; 4 spining wheeles, wooden vessells, tubbs, traies, pailes, etc., 2li. 4s.; one great Table, one cubboard, 2 chaires, 2 formes, 5li.; 5 chests, 2li. 15s., one bedd & 2 blanketts, 2li. 8s., 5li. 3s.; Tickin for bedd & boulster wth a sett of curtaines, 7li. 10s.; 30 yarrd linnen cloth, a pillow, sheete & feathers, 5li. 2s.; 6 diaper napkins & 20 other napkins & 4 pillowbears, 3li. 14s.; 3 paire of sheets and one Table cloth, 4li.; one paire of cart boxes & hoopes, 2 chaines, 2 old axes, 2 old howes wth a grindstone, an iron Trevitt, 2 old tubbs, 2li. 5s.; looking glasse, box and some other Trifles, 10s.; total, 974li. 17s.

Attested in Ipswich court Mar. 28, 1671 by Henry Herick.

The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674 (Google eBook) The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674 (Google eBook) VOL II
Essex Institute, Salem Ma., 1917

Henry was very well off, with a estate valued at 974 pounds and 17 shillings, including over 400
acres of land.

Henry had seven sons, two of whom, Joseph and Henry Jr., were my 8x great grandfathers 
Henry Jr. will be the next person in my 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks blogpost series.


Spring is here in New England, finally! The snow is melted here in Southeastern
Massachusetts and it's time to go out and do some graveyard hopping. Today I
did my first Find A Grave photo requests hunt of the year, and I took my Kindle
Fire along.

I'd filled some requests yesterday for one person using photographs I already had
on my hard drive from the Mt Vernon cemetery here in Abington. But I noticed
the person also had requests for more members of the same family over at
Colebrook Cemetery in Whitman, the next town over from here.  I decided to
drive over this afternoon and see what I could find.

There were 17 photo requests for Colebrook, and in the past I'd have written
out or printed off the list. Today I took a screen shot of the request page on my
Kindle Fire.

I'm familiar with Colebrook Cemetery and headed for the section where most
of people who died in the late 19th and early 20th century are buried. The
family name I was looking for was Cook,  and once I got to the cemetery I
turned on my Kindle, went to the screen shot and zoomed in on the 9 Cook
family names. Since the screen shot was on the Camera Roll, I didn't need
an internet connection to access it. 

I scouted out the headstones near the cemetery roads first and lucked out There
was a gravestone with all 9 people listed on it. I got out ofthe car and took my
pictures. I was done and on my way to pick up some grocerieson the way home
in less than ten minutes.

All in all, it went very well. The one minor problem was seeing the Kindle screen
in daylight, which is why I looked at it inside the car where I could see it more
easily. From now on, I'll be doing my gravestone hunting using this method

DISCLAIMER: I neither work for nor receive any compensation from Amazon or
 Find A Grave.

Monday, April 13, 2015


I was once more disappointed to find that Henry Herrick's Probate File didn't contain a
copy of his will. I was able, however,l to find a transcription of it in Volume 2 of
The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674:

"I Henry Herick of the Towne of Beverly in the county of Essex in New England being in a decaying estate of body but in pfect mynd and me[m]orye, through the Lords mercy do heerby make my last will and testament, wherby I commiting my body to the earth, and my soule to the mercy of god in christ Jesus, I dispose of my estate in order following. Impr I give vnto my deare & loveing wife Edith the westwardmost halfe of my now dwelling house, that is the lower roome and leantoo behind it, together with free egress and regress in and out of it, and also the vse of the cellar, well, yard, out houseing & garden, these to haue & inioy dureing her naturall life, further I giue to my sd wife foure of my best milch cowes & 4 sheepe which shee shall choose and all my household stufe, these to be at her absolute free dispose, also I giue vnto my sd wife, the sixt part of the fruits that shall be raysed from the come lands, & orchard wch I leave with my executor Henry and in the possession of my sonn John Also I give vnto my sonn Thomas all my weareing apparell exsept my best great coate and that 20 Acres of land where his house standeth ||with ten pounds to be paid 1| by my son John wn my executor seeth need to supplye his wants, And if in case he live and dye a single pson, the lands shall remaine to my sonns Ephraim & Joseph, equally devided & the ten pounds to my sonn Beniamin, if not made vse of to supply him, Also I give my sonn Zackery one hundred Acres of land lyeing in Birch plaine wch I bought of ffrancis & Henry Skerry of Salem with 5 acres of meadow lyeing in wenham meadow belonging to it, and 16 acres of land more or lesse wheron his house standeth & fenced in by him, Also I give my sonns Ephraim, Joseph, and John, that farme I bought of mr Allford the 20 acres giuen to Thomas being first measured out to him, the rest to be equally devided betweene them three, yet soe that Ephraim & Joseph may inioy what they have impued, and fenct, and John what is impued by Henry, soe as to pay the sixt part of the pduce to my wife before exprest. Also I giue to my sonn John the two lotts I bought of Henry Rennolds of Salem & Richard Kemball of wenham, also my sonn John is to have two acres of meadow in Bounkards meadow, also the bedding he lyeth vpon and my cart and plow with the chaine therof Also I give Ephraim moreover one milch cow & my best great coate and vnto Joseph I giue moreover two ewe sheepe & my timbar chaine, I give vnto my sonn Beniamyn all that pasture land, called my english pasture, w°h joyneth on the east syde to Andrew Eliott, lyeing betweene the countrye high way & the mill River, I say all that land lyeing on the southeast 6yde of the sd country high way, the wch pasture land | |with the apptenances] | my will is shall remaine in the hands of my sonn Henry to improve vntill Beniamyn be 21 years of age and in case he dye before he be 21 years of age I giue the sayd land to my sonn Henry, he paying vnto my children Zachry Ephraim Joseph & Elizabeth foure pounds a peece Also I giue vnto my daughter Elizabeth forty pounds viz. 14u to be payd by my sonn Henry -within three months after the confirmation of my will and the rest to be made vp in 3 cowes & moveables allredy in her possesion, And to John the youngest yoake of stears, and whatsoever I giue to any of my children heerin mentioned by this my will, I giue to them, there heires executors administrators & assignes for ever And for the rest of my estate, not aboue mentioned I give it all to my sonn Henry, he payeing vnto his mother the sixt part of the increase of the corne land & orchard dureing her life, and pviding for her the wintering of foure milch cows 4 sheepe & her firewood redy cut for fire at the dore, for all the yeare long and liberty to keepe 3 swine at the dore, and (I giue my sonn Ephraim one acre of meadow in buncars Joseph 3 acres of meadow in buncars) And to have the pper vse of the parlour & leaneto behind it with free egresse & regresse to houseing yards for her, necessary occasions as is expresed dureing her life I say these things premised I giue my sonn Henry my dwelling house out houseing orchard tillage land meadows pasture & woodland with my stock & whatever elce within dores & without, not above excepted makeing this my sayd sonn Henry my sole executor of this my last will In wittnes whereof I have set my hand this 24 of november 1670."

Henry Herick.

Witness: Robt. Morgan, Nehemiah Grover: Proved in Salem court Mar. 28, 1671 by the witnesses. Copy, Ipswich Quarterly Court Records, vol. 5, page 136.

The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674 (Google eBook) VOL II Essex Institute, Salem Ma., 1917

To be continued...

Saturday, April 11, 2015


Continuing on with Amy Johnson Crow's 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks,  I'm still exploring
the Barker and related families who are my Dad's maternal ancestors. This post will be the
first on the Herrick family. Edith Herrick was my 6x great grandmother and the wife of
my 6x great grandfather Francis Upton. Her immigrant ancestor was Henry Herrick.

Henry Herrick's own ancestry has been disputed lately. In this excerpt from Volume 3
of William Richard Cutter's  New England Families, Genealogical and Memorial I've
skipped the part tracing the Herricks from a Danish chief named Eric down to  Sir
William Herrick, who until recently was given as Henry Herrick's  father:

(I) Henry Herrick, immigrant ancestor, fifth son of Sir William (2) Herrick, was born at Beau Manor, Leicester county, England, in 1604. He was named by command of the unfortunate Prince Henry, the eldest son of James I., we are told. He probably went first to Virginia and then came north. He was among the first settlers of Salem, and he and his wife were of the thirty who founded the First Church of Salem in 1629. He was a proprietor of the town in 1635. He was admitted a freeman on May 18, 1631. He removed to Wenham, and then to Beverly, the Cape Ann side of Bass river. He bought large tracts of land in Beverly and gave farms there to his sons: Zachariah, Ephraim, Joseph and John, at Brick Plains and Cherry Hill. He was called a good and honest dissenter from the doctrines of the Church of England; he was a friend of Higgenson, but not so bigoted as some of the Puritans, for he was fined a few shillings in 1667 with others for "aiding and comforting an excommunicated person." He and his wife were among the founders of the church at Beverly. He married Editha, daughter of Hugh Laskin. He died in 1671, and the inventory of his estate taken March 15, 1670-71, was presented by his son Henry. The widow Editha deposed November 28, 1672, concerning some land her father, Hugh Laskin, sold "before he went away 25 years ago." She gave her age then as about sixty years, indicating that she was born about 1612. Children of Henry and Editha Herrick: Thomas: Zacheus. born in Salem, baptized December 25, 1636; Ephraim, mentioned below; Henry, baptized at Salem, January 16, 1640; Joseph, baptized August 6, 1645; Elizabeth, baptized July 4, 1647; John, baptized May 25, 1650; Benjamin, died about 1677. -p1180

New England Families, Genealogical and Memorial: A Record of the Achievements of Her People in the Making of Commonwealths and the Founding of a Nation, Volume 3 (Google eBook), Lewis historical publishing Company, 1913. New York, New York

I have double descent from Henry and Editha Herrick through their sons Henry and Joseph, down to both my Dad's parents.

For more about the question of Henry Herrick's parents and a discussion of the theory he
resided in Virginia before coming to Massachusetts, see the entry for him in Volume 2 of
The Great Migration Begins.

To be continued.

Friday, April 10, 2015


I mentioned in my post for the "When I Was Young" meme that one of the songs
my mother and grandmother sang to me when I was a child was "Pony Boy".  I don't
actually remember them singing it to me but I know they did because the song was
sort of a family tradition. It usually was sung while the child was sitting on your lap or
knee and you bounced the child up and down as you sang. When our younger brother came
along, Mom, my sister and I would sing it to him. Years later when Cheryl and Phil had
children of their own we sang it to their kids.

Last night when I was working on that meme post I wondered how long the "Pony Boy"
song had been around, so I looked it up online. It turns out it was written in 1909 and
the full title is "My Pony Boy". The lyrics were written by Bobby Heath and Charlie
O' Donnell wrote the music. (Wouldn't you know, two fine Irish American lads!). My
grandmother Agnes was born in 1898 so she would have been at least ten years old when
she first heard it. It would probably have been some time later though, probably when the
radio came along.

It turns out that the song that was sung to us kids was only the chorus, which is:

    Pony Boy, Pony Boy
    Won't you be my Tony Boy

    Don't say no
    Here we go
    Off across the plains

    Marry me
    Carry me
    Right away with you

    Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up, whoa!
    My Pony Boy.

The only difference in the version sung in our family is "Tony" is dropped for "Pony"
in the second line.

You can hear a performance of the full song here on YouTube:

The song has been sung to children in my family at some point or another for nearly a
century now. I wonder if the tradition will survive another century?


I wanted to do this Saturday Night Genea-Fun Challenge from Randy Seaver of
Genea-Musings but wanted to finish up my blogposts on Thomas Tuck first. So
here it is now. (Better late than never!) The rules for the Challenge were:

 1)  Geneablogger Alona Tester has devised a new meme called the "When I Was Young" genea-meme on her blog, LoneTester HQ.

2)  Since the genea-meme is 25 questions, let's do them five at a time.  This week, answer questions 1 to 5.

3)  Share your answers on your own blog post, in a comment on this blog post, or in a Facebook post or a Google+ post.

Here's my answers:

1.Do you (or your parents) have any memorabilia from when you were a baby? (ie. baby book, lock of hair, first shoes etc.)
I have knife from a silverware set my godmother Nancy gave me, I also have a sketch a
friend of my parents did of me,

and telegrams my Dad, grandmother, and Uncle Ed sent my Mom in the hospital after I was
born. I think they came with flowers:    

2. Do you know if you were named after anyone?
Nope, I was the first William that I know of in my Dad's family. 

3. And do you know of any other names your parents might have named you?
My parents were originally going to name me Michael after one of my Mom's uncles.
I don't know why they changed their minds.

4. What is your earliest memory?
 All my earliest memories involve my maternal grandmother Agnes (McFarland) White who
watched me while my folks were at work. One involves her cleaning the goldfish bowl and
accidentally losing the goldfish down the drain of the sink. The other one is of a roofer falling
off the roof of our house and Nana telling me not to look out the window.

5. Did your parent/s (or older siblings) read, sing or tell stories to you? Do you remember any of these?
 My grandmother and mother sang  "Pony Boy" and "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" to me, and probably played "Patty Cake" with me. Mom liked to sing so there were probably other songs as well that I can't recall from that far back. And I remember someone reading "Doctor Dan the BandAid Man".

Thursday, April 09, 2015


A few thoughts about my 9x great grandfather Thomas Tuck and the stolen bell:

I was checking for names of ancestors in the Essex County Court case files last week
when I ran across this case. Thomas Tuck seems to have been a bit of a character, a
man who liked his liquor a  bit too much. Most of the mentions about him have to
do with him being drunk. That's a subject for another blogpost. One case though
 possibly has a connection with the stolen bell. Some years before, Richard More
had dug a well and Thomas' cow fell in and broke its neck. So that may have been
the reason why Thomas helped steal the bell and then readily admitted doing it
years later: payback.

Also, the case points up again that early Puritan New England was not so much
a shining example of Christian virtue. There was a rivalry not only between the
town of Salem and the settlers of what would later become Beverly, there was one
apparently even between the churches over bells. I've come to think of it as "belfry

Finally, something about all this sounded familiar and then I realized where I'd heard of
it before. About ten years I read a book, David Lindsay's biography of Richard More, Mayflower Bastard, in which the church bell has a certain symbolism in More's life. I lost the book
someplace along the line, but it was very good, and I recommend it.

My Tuck descent down to my grandfather:

As I said, there will be at least one more blogpost about the troublesome Thomas Tuck in
the future.  


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.

Friday, April 03, 2015


In 1654 the Massachusetts Bay Colony sent an expedition against French settlements
at Castie, Maine, and two locations in Canada: St. Johns, New Brunswick,  and Port Royal,
Nova Scotia. The force of 300 men was led by Robert Sedgwick. In the taking of Port
Royal the Protestant colonists looted and burned a Catholic monastery, and one of the
looted items was a church bell. We probably would have ever known about the bell except
that twenty five years later it was the object of contention at a session of the Essex County
Court held at Salem in November 1679. One of the people involved was my 9x great
grandfather Thomas Tuck:

Capt. Richard More v. Wm. Dodg, jr. and Tho. Tuck, sr. Verdict for plaintiff.f
fWrit: Capt. Richard More v. William Dodge, jr., and Thomas Tuck, sr.; for illegally taking away a bell from plaintiff without his consent, which bell hangs in Beverly meeting house; dated 18 : 9 : 1679; signed by Hilliard Veren, for the court and the town of Salem; and served by Henry Skerry, marshal of Salem, by attachment of the house and land of Thomas Tuck, and a table and chest of William Dodge, jr.

Richard More's bill of cost, 2li. 12s. 8d.

Henery Kenny, aged about fifty-five years, testified that he was a soldier under Major Sedgwick about twenty-five years ago, at the taking of St. John's from the French and heard Capt. Lawthrop ask the General to give him a bell, which the General promised to do. Sworn in court.

Henry Skerry, marshal, deposed that when he served the attachment, Thomas Tuck told him that he and some others took the bell out of Capt. Richard More's yard.

Mr. Jeremy Hubbard of Topsfield deposed that he had heard divers times Thom. Tuck say that he and Thomas Picton took the bell. This was when deponent was minister at Bass river, now Beverly. Sworn in court.


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

So Thomas freely admitted he had stolen the bell from Richard More's yard.

There's more testimony, which will be in the next post.