Saturday, May 31, 2014


One hundred years ago, on June 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria was
assassinated in the Serbian city of Sarajevo. One month later, on July 29th World War 1
began. It was the first "global conflict" and it affected many families in Europe and the
Americas. So to commemorate the start of World War 1 I thought I'd ask my fellow

Where your ancestors were in 1914, and what effect the war would have
on their families?

Did any of them see military action? Were any family members killed? Do you have any
photographs of them in uniform?

Did the War force your ancestors to leave their homes? Was it the reason they emigrated
to another country? Where did they go?

Write a blogpost on any of the above, or something else about  World War 1 and your family. When it's posted, send me the link. If you have already written a blogpost that you'd like to use, then send me the link to that post. 

 The deadline for submissions will be July29th, 2014. I'll publish the list of links here a week later on August 5th.



While researching Samuel Endicott last week I discovered this from Cyrus Felton's
family genealogy:

"At the pretended trial of John Proctor, who was executed in the year of the witchcraft delusion, 1692, Nathaniel Felton and the neighbors living near the bounds of Salem Village presented the following paper, written by Nathaniel Felton the first signer. "We, whose names are underwritten, having several years known John Proctor and his wife, do testify that we never heard or understood that they were ever suspected to be guilty of the crime now charged upon them: and several of us, being their near neighbors, do testify that, to our apprehension, they lived Christian-like in their family, and were ever ready to help such as stood in need of their help."

In the original paper, there were some, perhaps many names cut oft' by scissors, says C. W. Upham's History of Witchcraft. Below are the twenty names found on the paper.
Nathaniel Felton Sen., and Mary Felton, his wife.
Samuel Marsh, and Priscilla Marsh, his wife.
James Houlton, and Ruth Houlton, his wife.
John Felton, and Nathaniel Felton Jr.
Samuel Frayll, and Ann Frayll, his wife.
Zachariah Marsh, and Mary Marsh, his wife.
Samuel Endicott, and Hannah Endicott, his wife.
Samuel Stone, and George Locker.
Samuel Gaskill, and Revidal Gaskill, his wife.
George Smith, and Edward Gaskill.

 A Genealogical History of the Felton Family: Descendants of Lieutenant Nathaniel Felton, who Came to Salem, Mass., in 1633; with Few Supplements and Appendices of the Names of Some of the Ancestors of the Families that Have Intermarried with Them. An Index Alphabetically Arranged, of the Felton Families ... (Google eBook) Pratt Brothers, printers and publishers, 1886

Many of the same group of people signed a similar letter of support for Rebecca Nurse. Unfortunately, neither letter swayed the judges; both John Proctor and Rebecca Nurse were executed.

I have ancestors among both the accusers and the accused in the witchcraft trial hysteria. It's  nice to see My ancestors Nathaniel Felton, Mary (Skelton)Felton, Samuel Endicott and Hannah (Felton) Endicott trying to do the brave thing in these two cases.

I need to make a list of who in my family did what to whom during this dark period.
When I have it done, I'll post it here.

Friday, May 30, 2014


Fellow geneablogger Amy Johnson Crow of No Story Too Small has issued the
52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. Basically, we have to post something every
week on a different ancestor, whether a story, picture, or research problem. For
this prompt I've tried to concentrate on ancestors I haven't researched as much
as I have others in my family tree. I'm following up on my previous posts about
Ruth Endicott and her father Samuel Endicott. with this one about her grandfather
Nathaniel Felton. Nathaniel is my 9x great grandfather

Once again I've found a bunch of information on Googlebooks, mostly from this
Felton family genealogy by descendant Cyrus Felton:

Nathaniel Felton was the venerable patriarch of the family in Massachusetts, whose descendants are compiled in this genealogy.

Nathaniel Felton came to Salem in 1633, when 17 years of age; he made a voyage to England in 1634, and returned to Salem in 1635; the next year, 1636, had 20 acres given

to him.In 1643, he sold to William Brown Sen., "the Lott southeast of Rev. Mr. Skelton's Lott, with an old house upon it." About 1645, he settled near Felton Hill, Salem, the part afterwards called Danvers,—now Peabody. He said in 1700, he had lived there 55 years. Nathaniel Felton was a juryman in 1655, grand juryman in 1676, 1679 and 1683; a constable in 1657. He was chosen Ensign in 1679, and Lieut. 1681. He became a member of the church in 1648, and his oldest two children were baptized that year.

He was a witness to many wills, deeds, agreements, etc. Rev. Dr. Felt, author of annals ot Salem, says, "He was a man of good faith- and jndgment. He was frequently called to give his testimony about litigated estates." In 1674, he was overseer of the estate of his deceased brother-in-law, John Marsh. In 1676, he was overseer and appraiser ot the estate of his brother-in-law, Christopher Waller. In 1684, he was overseer and appraiser of Dr. Zerubbabel Endicott's estate, son of the then Gov. John Endicott.

Nathaniel Felton was overseer of several other estates. Beside those named above, he was an appraiser of the following estates: Rebecca Bacon in 1655; Ann Fuller in 1662; Wm. Cantlebury in 1663; Henry Bullock in 1664; Thos. James in 1666; Ralph Tompkins in 1666; Richard Bishop in 1675; Henry Coleborne in 1676; Isaac Goodale in 1679; Isaac Gould in 1679; John Tompkins Sen. in 1681; Edward Bridges in 1682; Thomas Goldthwaite in 1683; John Bowden in 1683; Edward Beacham in 1684; Thomas Rix in 1685; Wm. Babb in 1691; probably this list is not complete.-

A Genealogical History of the Felton Family: Descendants of Lieutenant Nathaniel Felton, who Came to Salem, Mass., in 1633; with Few Supplements and Appendices of the Names of Some of the Ancestors of the Families that Have Intermarried with Them. An Index Alphabetically Arranged, of the Felton Families ... (Google eBook) Pratt Brothers, printers and publishers, 1886

His  family information is given as:


(1.) i. NATHANIEL FELTON, b. about 1615, came from England to Salem, Maws., 

in 1633,  where he lived about 72 years, He married Mary Skelton, daughter ot Rev. Samuel Skelton, the first minister of Salem. Mrs. Mary Felton died May 8, 1701, aged about 75 years. He died about 4 years afterwards, July 30,1705, aged 90 years. His will dated October, 1703, proved May, 1706, mentions sons Johu and Nathaniel, daughters, Elizabeth, a widow, Ruth and Hannah. Their children were:
2f. i. John, b. about 1645 ; m. in 1670 Mary Tompkins.
3f. ii. Ruth, bapt, Oct. 29, 1648; m. James Houlton, of Salem.
4. iii. Mary, bapt. April 6, 1651; died young.
5f. iv. Elizabeth, b. Mar. 18,1652 ; m. Thomas Watkins.
6. v. Nathaniel, bapt. Oct. 28,1654; died young.
7f. vi. Nathaniel2, b. Aug. 15, 1655; m. Anne Horn.
8. vii. Mary, b. Jan. 15, 1657; bapt. May 30, 1658.
9f. viii. Hannah, bapt. June 20, 1663; m. in 1684, Samuel Endicott.
10. ix. Susanna, bapt. Mar. 29, 1665.


Now I already have a Skelton family connection through my Ellingwood line. This
one from from Nathaniel Felton and his wife Mary Skelton comes through my Barker
line. This means my grandparents Floyd E West Sr and Cora B Barker were Skelton cousins, albeit very distant.

So I suppose my next entrance in this 53 Weeks series should be on Reverend Samuel

Saturday, May 24, 2014


((I'm reposting this today in hopes that perhaps the relatives of the men
in the photograph might one day find this picture of their veterans. First posted
June, 2008))

I think I may have posted this photo once before. It's from
when my Dad was training for the Air Corps during World
War II before he washed out due to inner ear problems.

On the back is a partial list of names of his fellow trainees,
and I'm posting that image now and my attempt at
transcribing it here in the hopes that the children and
grandchildren of these men might find it someday and see
how they looked in their uniforms before they went off to

Because of the way the men are grouped it's hard for me to
assign names to specific faces. The only two I can are Michael
D. Piper Jr. and Lonnie (or Lennie?) L. Parker (?) standing to
either side of my father Floyd E. West Jr. at the far right end
of the back row. I think the first name is actually Lee Mill
Sanders and that he just signed the list "last name first."

I also noticed that Daniel M. Jeffrey's name appears twice.
The first entry is crossed over so I've assumed that either
someone else had posted the name in the wrong place or he
had done so himself and then corrected his mistake. I've
changed the first entry to "unknown".

So here they are. I wonder how many of them made it
home after the war, and I thank them for their service
to our country.

Sanders Lee Mill Artesia N.M.

Palmer E. Severson Wanooka (?) Minn,

Jerald L. Swan, Beatrice, Nebraska

Helmut Paul Zimmerman, Buffalo, N.Y.

Robert L. Rugg Pueblo, Colorado


Charles H. Parman, Skidmore, Mo.



Bill C. Hays, San Angelo, Texas


Ward L. Warnock, Camden, Ark.

Michael C. Sanborn (?) Port Arthur, Tex.

Bob Moffet, St. Joseph, Mo.


Ross Powill, Ellisville Miss

Daniel M. Jeffrey, Jeanette, La.

Allen D. Bailey, Mpls Minnesota





Jack Sessions Colton, California

Jack Wendt, Pecos, Texas


Burton L. Steele, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Bob E Wick,  Denver, Colorado

James H. Trask, Kansas City, Kansas

William E. Green,  Eden, Texas



Michael D. Piper Jr., Queen City, Mo.

Floyd E. West

Lonnie (or Lennie?) L. Parker (?), Roswell, New Mex.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


Warning: this is going to be one of my semi-coherent rambles:

I was working on the post on Samuel Endicott when I stumbled across a document online
from the Salem Witchcraft trial era that had been signed by several ancestors. I'll be
dong a post about that later. But as I was looking at I was once again struck by the thought
that maybe I've been going about my genealogy research the wrong way. Let me explain.

When I began researching I put everything I had already from my Aunt Dorothy's research
on my PAF file and then fell into the name gathering trap at FamilySearch. After awhile,
I decided to concentrate on my Ellingwood family line and spent about two and a half
years mainly adding information from two Ellingwood genealogy books to my database.
In between those sessions I would find stories about other ancestral families online and
I'd blog about those here and add what I found to my database. Now when the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge started, I wanted to use that to focus on those ancestors
I hadn't done much work on before. In some cases I've found quite a bit, in others, not
so much at all.

The discovery that I'd had entered John Endecott on my family tree and not recognized his
historical significance was when I first had the thought that maybe I'm doing this the wrong
way somehow. I spent a lot of time on the Ellingwoods, which I do not regret, and when I found those stories about other ancestors I got lost in them and wrote long blogpost series
about them, such as the one about the Newbury Church struggle. Should I have just done a
few short general posts on them and moved on up the family tree? Do I spend too much time researching some families at the expense of others? I suppose my interest in history is to blame. If I find one of my ancestors was involved in something I want to know more about it.

Does this make me a family historian instead of a genealogist, or is there really no difference between the two labels?

Ah well. Too late to turn back now. I'm well and truly hooked on stories that fill in the years between births, marriages, and deaths.

And I still can't believe I didn't make the Endecott connection the first time.



Fellow geneablogger Amy Johnson Crow of No Story Too Small has issued the
52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. Basically, we have to post something every
week on a different ancestor, whether a story, picture, or research problem. For
this prompt I've tried to concentrate on ancestors I haven't researched as much
as I have others in my family tree. I'm following up on my previous post about
Ruth Endicott with this one about her father, my 8x great grandfather Samuel

There's a lot of information out there on Samuel's father Zerubbabel and his
grandfather Gov. John Endecott but not as much for Samuel. I did find this from
William Richard Cutter on Googlebooks:

(III) Samuel Endecott, second son and child of Dr. Zerubbabel and Mary (Smith) Endecott, born in Salem, 1659, died 1694. He lived on the Orchard farm. In 1684 he married Hannah Felton, who was baptized June 20. 1663. She was a daughter of Nathaniel Felton, senior. of Salem, who was born in England about 1615, came to Salem 1633, and died July 30. 1705. His wife was Mary Skelton, daughter of Rev. Samuel Skelton, the first minister of Salem. She died May 8,1701. After the death of Samuel Endecott his widow Hannah married, second, Thorndike Procter, youngest child of John Procter by his first wife. John Procter was executed for witchcraft in Salem, August 19, 1692. Samuel and Hannah (Felton) Endecott had children: 1. John, born October 18, 1685, died before his father. 2. Samuel, born August 30, 1687. (See post). 3. Ruth, born 1689; married July 17, 1710, Martin Herrick, son of Joseph and Mary Herrick, and grandson of Henry Herrick, the immigrant. 4. Hannah, born 1691 ; married April 3, 1712, Benjamin Porter, son of Israel Porter. and grandson of John Porter, who bought “Skelton’s neck” from the children of Rev. Samuel Skelton, first minister of Salem.
- pp136-137 Genealogical and Personal Memoirs Relating to the Families of Boston and Eastern Massachusetts, Volume 1 (Google eBook) William Richard Cutter  Lewis historical Publishing Company, 1908 Boston, Ma.

And I found this by Cyrus Felton:
(9.) viii. SAMUEL ENDICOTT, b. about 1659, son of Dr. Zerubbabel Endicott, and grandson of Gov. John Endicott, who was Governor of Massachusetts Colony' 16 years. Samuel Endicott m. in 1684, Hannah Felton, bapt. June 20, 1663, dau. of Nathaniel Felton, sen., of Salem. The Endicott Farm was on Cowhouse River, sometimes called Ipswich River, Endicott River, now Waters River. The farm on the north side now in Danvers. Samuel Endicott d. in 1694, aged 35 years. In September, 1697, Mrs. Endicott was appointed guardian to the three children.
29. i. John, b. Oct. 18, 1685; died before his father.
30f. ii. Samuel, Jr., b. Aug. 30, 1687; m. Anne Endicott, his cousin.
31f. iii. Ruth, b. 1689; m. 1710, Martin Herrick.
32f. iv. Hannah, b. 1691; m. 1712, Benjamin Porter.

Mrs. Hannah (Felton) Endicott, m. 2d, December, 1697, Thorndike Proctor, b. July 15, 1672, the youngest child by the first wife of John Proctor who was executed for witchcraft in Salem, Aug. 19,1692.

- p13  A Genealogical History of the Felton Family: Descendants of Lieutenant Nathaniel Felton, who Came to Salem, Mass., in 1633; with Few Supplements and Appendices of the Names of Some of the Ancestors of the Families that Have Intermarried with Them. An Index Alphabetically Arranged, of the Felton Families ... (Google eBook) Cyrus Felton, Pratt Brothers, printers and publishers, 1886

And that was a surprise: another connection to the Salem witchcraft trials, albeit an
indirect one. I'll discuss that more in a future post.

Monday, May 19, 2014


I'm still investigating Ruth Endicott and her parents but I thought
I'd show how my Dad's parents were Herrick cousins and which side has
the Endicott connection  Their ancestors in that line were two sons
of immigrants Henry Herrick and Edith(Editha)Laskin: my grandfather
Floyd E West Sr was descended from Henry Herrick, while my grandmother
Cora B. Barker's ancestor was Joseph Herrick.

Here's my grandfather's descent:

And here's my grandmother's:

The Endicott connection is through my Grandmother.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


Fellow geneablogger Amy Johnson Crow of No Story Too Small has issued the
52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. Basically, we have to post something every
week on a different ancestor, whether a story, picture, or research problem. For
this prompt I've tried to concentrate on ancestors I haven't researched as much
as I have others in my family tree. This post will be about my 7x great grandmother
Ruth Endicott's ancestry.

This comes under the heading of one of those things that surprise me when I get
around to examining them closer. Somewhere along the way I'd found  a record that
my 7x great grandfather Martin Herrick's wife was named Ruth Endicott. They were
married in Salem, Ma. on 17 Jul 1710. Around seven years later their daughter, my
6x great grandmother, Edith(Edde) Herrick was born. I can't find a record of her birth
but in looking online for it I found this on Google Ebooks in an entry on the Herrick

Martyn, fifth son of Joseph Herrick and second child of his second wife, Mary (Endicott) Herrick, was baptized January 26, 1680, in Beverly, died in 1739 in Salem. He settled in that part of Lynn now known as Lynnfield on a farm given him by his father. He married, July 17, 1710, Ruth Endicott, of Salem, born 1689, daughter of Samuel and Hannah (Felton) Endicott, granddaughter of Governor John Endicott. Children: Benjamin, Samuel, mentioned below; Ruth, Edith

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 2 (Google eBook) p902

Further searching gave me the names of Samuel Endicott's parents, the wonderfully named
Zerubbabel Endicott and his wife Mary Smith.  I also found that Hannah Felton was the
daughter of  Nathaniel Felton and  Mary Skelton. 

Now for some reason after whenever I discovered the connection to Governor John Endicott I filed it away and never got back to it. I suspect it was while I was still busy working on my Ellingwood branch of my family tree. I have a degree in History and
you'd think that some sort of bells and whistles would have gone off in my brain when I first found the information, but nope.

I still need to find out more about these people, especially any records for births, marriages and deaths. I'll save John Endicott for later and concentrate on the others first.

To be continued.

Sunday, May 11, 2014


In honor of Mother's day, here are pictures of some of our Dad's female ancestors.

First, on his mother's side:

Amos H Barker & Betsey J (Moore) Barker

Our 2x great grandmother Betsey Jane Moore was born on 16 Aug 1842 at Waterford,
Oxford, Me. She married Amos Hastings Barker in 1856 and they raised a family of
12 children, 11 of whom survived to adulthood. Betsey died 12Mar 1924 at age 82.

My great grandmother Charlotte Lovenia Barker is the lady on the right.

 Our great grandmother Charlotte Lovenia Barker was youngest of  Amos & Betsey's
12 children. She was born on 3 Aug 1879 in Albany, Oxford, Maine and was known as
":Lottie". She married her first cousin Frank W. Barker on 16Oct 1898 and they had
4 children before Frank died in 1905 from pneumonia caused by "La Grippe" (the flu).
She was married three more times before her death on 3Jan 1944 at Bangor, Maine.   

Cora Berthella (Barker) West & her great granddaughter Mindy Sue West

Our grandmother Cora Berthella (Barker) West was born 27Oct 1899 and was the eldest
child of Frank and Charlotte. She preferred the name Bertha, although it was given as
Cora on her marriage certificate. Bertha married Floyd E.West Sr on 24Mar 1919 and
had 5 children, one of whom was our Dad.

 On his Dad's side of the family:

Arvilla (Ames)West

Our 3x great grandmother Arvilla Ames was born in Livermore, Androscoggin, Maine
on 25Jan 1810, one of 10 children. She married John Cutter West on 23Sep 1827
at Sumner, Maine, and five years later they moved to Letter B Plantation (later renamed
Upton), Oxford, Maine. She had 10 children, 3 of whom died in a diphtheria outbreak
in 1862. She died at age 97 at Hermon, Maine.

Louisa A.(Richardson) West
  Louisa Richardson, our 2x great grandmother was born in Wilton, Maine on
23Jun 1837 at Wilton, Maine.  She was the second wife of Jonathan Phelps West,
whose first wife had died in the 1862 diphtheria outbreak. Louisa and Jonathan
married on 31Jan 1865 and had 4 sons. She died 4Oct 1925 at age 88.

Florilla (Dunham) Ellingwood & Asa F Ellingwood

Our other paternal 2x great grandmother was Florilla Dunham who was born 29Aug
1832 at North Paris, Oxford, Maine. She married Asa F. Ellingwood on 10Aug 1850
at Woodstock, Oxford, Maine and 11 children.(She was one of 11 children herself.)
She died in Paris, Oxford, Maine on 21Feb 1917.

Clara (Ellingwood) West

Finally, our great grandmother  Clara Ellingwood was the 8th child and youngest
daughter of Florilla and Asa. She was born 6Mar 1865 in Dummer, Coos, NH.
Her first marriage with Charles Tidswell ended in divorce and she married  our
great grandfather Philip J West on 25May 1894 at Shelburne, Coos, NH. She had
three children by her first marriage and two by her second, including our grandfather
Floyd E West, Sr. Sadly, Clara died young after an illness in Augusta, Maine on 10Apr
1901. She was only 36 years old.

And those are the pictures we have of the mothers in our family.

Happy Mother's Day! 


 Once again for Mothers Day I'm posting photos of our family's mothers.

For our Mom's side we don't have very many since her grandparents immigrated
here from Ireland and Germany in the 19th century.

John McFarland & Annie (Kelley) McFarland
First there's Anna Kelley, born 1Oct 1858 in Kiltrustan, Roscommon, Ireland. She married
my great grandfather in Edinburgh Scotland on 16May1879 and shortly after they came
to America and settled in Boston. She had 17 children, 10 of whom survived to adulthood.
Anna died 15Feb 1945 at Boston, Ma. at age 86.

Pauline (Offinger) White
Our other maternal great grandmother was Pauline Offinger, born 17Dec 1873
in Cambridge, Massachusetts to German immigrant parents. She married Edward J.
White on 27Nov 1895 in Boston, Ma. and had 9 children.          

Agnes (McFarland) White
Our grandmother Agnes (McFarland) White was born 7Oct 1898 in Boston, Ma, the
14th of John & Annie's 17 children. She was known as "Aggie" in the family.
She married Edward F.White, Sr. and had two children, our Uncle Ed and our Mom
Anne Marie. She died 12Feb 1957 in Malden Ma.

Anne M. (White) West

Finally, our Mom, Anne M. (White) West. She was born 7Jul 1927 at Boston, Ma and
married our Dad on 29Jun 1947, also at Boston. To her McFarland cousins she was
known as "Red White".She died on 28Jul 1999 at Weymouth, Ma and she is missed by
my brother, my sister, myself and the rest of the family.

Saturday, May 10, 2014


I found an abstract of my ancestor Edward Holyoke's will online in Googlebooks in an ebook edition of an NEHGS publication from 1855,  The New England Historical & Genealogical Register, Volume 9. It is part of an article, ABSTRACTS FROM THE EARLIEST WILLS ON RECORD IN THE COUNTY OF SUFFOLK, MASS. by William B Trask.  What struck me right off the bat is that Edward must have really been proud of his book, as he gives a copy of it to each of his five sons in law and calls it his "best legacy."

Edward Holyoke. Will made 25 Dec. 1658. As for the holy faith of the holy one, God in trinitie, and of the holy faith of our glorious Lord, the son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, the second Adam, I haue composed A booke and doe bestowell [?] vpon each of my sonns in law as their best legacy, &-c. (Being instructed chiefly by an understanding of the Scriptures) I doubt not to say my booke will giue him A hart of all sound doctrine.

Touching my worldly estate, I dispose the yoke of Oxen and my mare, to my sonn in law, George Keysar, and my mare foale and A Cow, to my sonn Prenam; tow kine to my sonn Andrewes; A Cow to my dau. Marten^ These Oxen and kine are in the hands of Goodman Wilkins, of Linn; the mare and foale is at Rumney Marsh. 1 giue to my sonn Tuttle, that £4 that yearely hee should haue giuen mee since I put ouer the house at Boston to him. I neuer yet had [a] penney of it; 40* I gaue him of that, soe theare is yet £6 beehind and theare is £5 mentioned in Goodman Wilkins Case that hee oweth mee, I giue to my dau. Marten, and 20*. to my kindswoman, Mary Mansfeild, and 10". of it to John DoUtile, and 10". of it to my kindsman Thomas Morris, of Newham, and 10". of it to Hannah Keasur. I giue my best Cloake of that Cloth that cam from England to my sonn Holyoke, as allsoe my Coate of the same cloth. I giue my other Cloke to my sonn Keaser, my best Dublet and breeches to my sonn Tuttle, my stuff dublet and my best hat to my sonn Holyoke; all the rest of my weareing apparell to my sonn Keasar. As touching the whol yeares rent of this yeare 1658, that is Dew mee from Goodman Wilkins, of Linn, I owe Theodore Atkins 49".; pay him in what I owe; John Hull Aboute 22"., pay him in wheate; pay M' Russell, treasurer, 3 bushells of wheate; for John Andrewes, 8 bushells of wheate to Mr Wilson, Paster at Boston, and 8 bushell of Indian. As for my Linell, let all my dau" part alike. The 20" Goodman Page oweth mee, as my sonn Tuttle cann witness, I giue my dau. Martin. There is aboute 15". Cap*. Sauige oweth mee, intreate him to satisfie my Cosan Dauis, and the rest giue to my dau. Marten. As for my books and wrightings, I giue my sonn Hulyoke all the books that are at Linn, as allsoe the Iron Chest, and the bookes I haue in my study that are Mr Beanghans works I giue him, hee onely cann make vse of them, and likewise I giue all my maniscripts what soeauer, and I giue him that large new testament in folio, with wast papers between eucry leafe, allso Mr Answorlh on the 5 books of Moses and the psalmes, and my dixinary and Temellius bible in Latten, and my latten Concent and daniell bound together, and A part of the New testament in Folio, with wast paper betwin euery leafe, and the greate mapps of geneolagy, and that old maniscript called a Synas sight; the rest, for A muskett I gaue of olde to my sonn Holyoke: All my land in Linn, and that land and Medow in the Cuntry neere Reding, all was giuen to my sonn Holyoke., when hee maried Mr Pynchons Daughter. Pr me. Edword Holyoke.

25 June 1660. Power of Administration to the estate of the late Mr Edward Holyoke is Graunted to Mr Elizur Holyoke, his only sonn, to performe this Imperfect will of his father as neere as may be.

Inventory of the Estate of Mr Edward Hollyoke, of Lynne, who dyed at Rumney Marsh, the 4th May 1660, taken the 19 June 1660. Prised by John Tultle, John Dowlettell. Amt. ,£681. "A farme at Lynne, .£400; 3 acres at Nahant, £6; a farme at Bever dame, neare Reading, £150," &c. &c.

I'm bemused by the part about " I giue to my sonn Tuttle, that £4 that yearely hee should haue giuen mee since I put ouer the house at Boston to him. I neuer yet had [a] penney of it;". That would be my 9x great grandfather John Tuttle who had married  Edward's
daughter Mary. It sounds like a bit of Puritan criticism there to me. Also, for someone
who was not actually a clergyman, Edward had an impressive collection of religious
books to pass on to his son Elizur. Combined with the amount of property Edward
owned, it fits the Puritan ideal of a godly, industrious man.

Friday, May 09, 2014


Now that mud season is over and the weather is turning warmer, I'm trying to get out
more. One of my problems is that I am not really comfortable driving long distances
on the highways. I've had no reason to for the last twenty five years or so since I could drive the secondary roads back and forth to work. I'm trying to reacclimate myself so
I can visit some places further away like the cemeteries where my Middlesex, Worcester, and Essex counties ancestors are buried. I've loaded the street addresses into my GPS, and on a whim today I set out for North Andover and Methuen, Ma.

After about an hour or so of whiteknuckle driving I reached the Old North Burial Ground in North Andover. My Dad's maternal line, the Barkers, came from the area and I was hoping to find some of them buried there, but the first headstone I saw belonged to an ancestor from a different family line, 9x great grandfather John Stevens. He was born in England in 1605 and died on 11Apr 1662. I didn't see a stone for his wife Elizabeth (Parker)Stevens but she outlived him by thirty years so she probably remarried. Also, the stone is in excellent condition so I'm wondering if it is a replacement for an earlier one.

I did find plenty of Barkers, mostly collateral line cousins, but I also found two direct Barker ancestors: my 7x great grandparents Benjamin Barker and Hannah (Marston) Barker.

Nearby I found the headstones of two of their children, my6x great grandaunt Alice Barker
and 6x great granduncle Benjamin Barker Jr.

The cemetery was in good shape for the most part, although there was sad evidence of
worse times in the past.

After taking 62 photos I got back into my car and followed the GPS directions to the Meeting House Hill Cemetery in Methuen where 6x great grandfather Jonathan Barker is buried, I should have checked before I left my house because if I had, I would have known the cemetery was closed to the public. I drove around it outside the stone walls and chainlink fence, then got directions home from the GPS and left. Roughly an hour and a half later I was home after dealing with the start of rush hour traffic on the highway.
I'd left my apartment around 11:30am  and was home a little after 3:30pm. 

I'll have to find some more cemetery locations to enter into the GPS!

Wednesday, May 07, 2014


My ancestor Edward Holyoke is overshadowed  the accomplishments of his son Elizur. But I discovered recently that Edward had written  a book. It first has, without a doubt,
the longest title for a book I've ever seen:

The doctrine of life, or, Of mans redemption, by the seed of Eve, the seed of Abraham, the seed of David, &c. as it was taught in severall periods of time, from Gen. 3. 15. till Christ came in the flesh, to fulfill all typicall prefigurations of him by his death : wherein also sundry other fundamentall points are discussed and cleared from some common mistakes : as Daniels chronologie of seventy sevens, which is cleared from the uncertainty which too many expositors have unadvisedly cast upon it : and about the Jewes calling, that it must not be understood of any return to Canaan, or of their restauration to a perspicuous common wealth any more, but of the calling of a remnant of them to the faith, in the countries where they live dispersed : and with the true nature of our Lords sufferings, with sundry other such like points, as may be seen in the table : propounded by way of question and answer, with annotations thereunto annexed : divided into three parts / by Edward Holyoke of New-England.   

Try saying all that five times fast!

The book included a story about King Solomon entitled:

A Prosopopeia on Solomon's fall, by the Temptations of his idolatrous wives to the ruin of his Kingdome and posterity, in granting them the liberty of conscience for the practice of their idolatrous Rites, framed by way of Dialogue between King Solomon, and Tirzana 

the Queen.

The story was even included in some 19th century anthologies of American literature. If you are curious, you can read it here. By modern standards it is misogynist but it probably is a good representation of how the Puritans looked upon the wiles of women in 1658 when it was published.

Edward Holyoke was himself an example of a certain type of Puritan colonist, a prosperous well educated layman with an interest in scholarship and religion.

In the next part, I'll discuss his will.  

Tuesday, May 06, 2014


Fellow geneablogger Amy Johnson Crow of No Story Too Small has issued the
52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. Basically, we have to post something every
week on a different ancestor, whether a story, picture, or research problem. For
this prompt I've tried to concentrate on ancestors I haven't researched as much
as I have others in my family tree. Usually I'm running late with these posts, but
I'm actually up to date now. My subject this week is my 10x great grandfather
Edward Holyoke Jr.

The Holyoke family is a prominent one in Massachusetts history. The family
name is carried by a city, a mountain, and a college in the state, and a Holyoke
was one of the presidents of Harvard University. (Mount Holyoke is named after
my 9x great granduncle, Elizur Holyoke, and the college is names after the mountain.
There is some disagreement whether the city of Holyoke was named after the
nearby mountain or the man. I would think if it were named after the mountain, the
city would be called Mount Holyoke instead. But I digress). I'm descended from
Mary Holyoke, one of Edward's five daughters.

As usual, my first stop looking for information was Google ebooks, where I
found this:

Edward Holyoke emigrated from Tamworth, England, to Massachusetts, and was
residing in Lynn in 1636-37. In 1638 he was made a freeman, and in the same year
the town of Lynn granted him five hundred acres of land, both upland and meadow.
He subsequently settled in Rumney Marsh, now Chelsea. “He was a member of the
Quarterly Court from 1639 to 1643, also in 1647-48, and was a representative in ten
sessions of the General Court.” His death occurred May,4, 1660. In June, 1612, he
married Prudence, daughter of the Rev. John Stockton, of Kinhalt, England. Edward
Holyoke left one son, Elizur, and five daughters.
(pp103-104) Biographical Sketches of Representative Citizens of the State of Maine (Google eBook)New England Historical Publishing Company, 1903 - Maine

I've already mentioned that some of Edward's descendants were famous. What I
didn't realize was that Edward himself was well known. I'll discuss that in the next

To be continued

Friday, May 02, 2014


Still looking for more on ancestor John Cheney of Newbury, I found this in another
Google Book ebook edition tonight:

"At Newbury John Cheney prospered. His allotments of land were large. He had a good stand in the "old town," and on shore and stream elsewhere. He had three acres granted, June 19, 1638, at the westerly end of the great swamp behind the great hill; August 25, same year, six acres of salt marsh; then a parcel of marsh with little islands of upland in it, about twenty acres. Little River on the northwest, formerly part of the calf common, assigned to him, July 5, 1639. Lot No. 50 in the "New Towne" on Field street was granted him, January 10. 1643. He was a member of the grand jury, April 27, 1648; selectman often; member of a committee to lay out the way to the neck and through the neck to the marshes on the east side of the old town, November 29, 1654. He was interested in public affairs and was one of the famous ten men of Newbury who took such interest in the campaign of Governor Winthrop against Sir Harry Vane that they made a journey of forty miles afoot from Newbury to Cambridge to take the freeman's oath. They were admitted May 17, 1637. It was by such earnest action on the part of his supporters that Winthrop was elected again and the conservative party triumphed. He died July 28, 1666, leaving a will, dated June 5, 1666, written in his own hand".p619
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 2 (Google eBook) Lewis historical publishing Company, New York, New York, 1913

From what I've been able to gather so far, Sir Henry Vane was a Royalist which would not
have endeared him to the Puritans and to add to that mark against him, he'd also been a
supporter of Roger Williams and Anne Hutchinson. I need to find out more about his
short time in New England.

My descent from John Cheney is
John Cheney & Martha (Parrat?)
Daniel Cheney & Sarah Bailey
Eleanor Cheney & Thomas Safford
John Safford & Martha Haskell
Ruth Safford & Samuel Haskell
Martha Haskell & Moses Houghton
Sally Houghton & James T Dunham
Florilla Dunham & Asa F Ellingwood
Clara Ellingwood & Philip J West
Floyd E West Sr & Cora B Barker (my grandparents)