Monday, November 19, 2012


Before I move on to what happened when John Rolfe came home and found
out my ancestor John Emery had done a poor job of "looking out" for Mary
Rolfe while John was away, I wanted to be sure I hadn't missed anything else
involving her in the March 1663 court session. There was, but it didn't have
anything to do with her troubles with Henry Greenland.

This time, it was Greenland's friend, Richard Cordin:

"Richard Cordin was complained of for attempting, on Dec. 9, 1662, to assault Mary,
wife of John Roffe in the stable or cowhouse of her mother Bishop. He desired to
be tried by a jury and was found guilty.. Court sentenced him to prison to remain
until the next session of court and then to be whipped, unless he paid a fine of
twenty pounds."

The footnotes give the details:

"The complaint against Richard Cording was made by some of the selectmen of
Newbery. Mary Rolfe and Sarah Sculler testified that about Dec. 9, 1662, Goody
Bushop being sick, Mr. Cordin was sent for. Her daughter Marie Roffe was there
to attend her: "and then falling in to a fitt as manie times she doth Ether by
suden Joy or suden fer Mr Cordin then acted veri Louingly for hir help: afterward
he gaue hir mother a dram of phisick and bid hir sleep but she being in Extremiti
Could not sleep then he went to supper and neer two houers after she Could not
sleep: then he gaue hir som thing on the point of a knife and said now she will
sleep untill the morning: then he desired Marie to show him wher hir horse was:
she Answered hir horse was well for he was lookt to all Redy and fed well: he
staid a litl while," etc. She went out with him, fearing to cross him, lest he harm
her mother, and telling her sister that she would cry out if she were in any danger.
In the stable he struck the candle out of her hand and she ran in front of the cows.
He charged her to have a care for the cows, and she said she would as soon be
gored by the cows as to be defiled by such a rogue as he, etc. She cried out to

Sara, and she sent out the negro, and Cordin threatened her if she told of it. 
Sworn before Daniel Denison."

"William Neaff and Elizabeth Webster deposed that they heard Goodman Roaffe's
wife say in their house that "Mr Cording was as pretty a Carriadg man as Euer shee
saw in hir life," and at another time "that Mr Cordin had given out som words to
Mr Greeneland aboute hir miscariadg and further she said if Mr Cordin had hold his
tonge she would not have Charged anithing uppon him." Sworn, 1:2:1663, before
Wm. Hathorne.

John Knight, sr., deposed that this last summer, he was at his son's house in the
evening, and Goodwife Rofe and Mr. Cording came in about an hour and a half
after sunset. Sworn before Daniel Denison."

Now we have a second man accused of improper advances towards Mary Rolfe.
I wish there was a picture of her, because I have to wonder what a woman looked
like to inspire such hot pursuit by a pair of rakes like Greenland and Cordin!

Perhaps confinement gave Cordin time to reflect upon the price of his behavior:

"Richard Corddin, upon petition to this court, was released from imprisonment
provided he give security to depart this jurisdiction within one week. Mr. Samuell
Symonds and Major Genll. Denison were ordered to take security."

So Richard Cordin decided to leave Essex County, which was probably just as well,
since he wouldn't be around when John Rolfe returned home.

To be continued.

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