Tuesday, June 30, 2015

52 ANCESTORS IN 52 WEEKS 2015 WEEK 26: JOHN HAWKES 1690-1738 PT1

My ancestor John Hawkes' father Adam Hawkes had died in 1691, three years before his father's
death. Adam had been the oldest child of the first John Hawkes and would have been given a
large part of the estate if he hadn't preceded his father. Yet no mention is made of his widow
Elizabeth or their son John in the original agreement between the heirs settling their share of the
property. That matter was eventually taken care of in the following document from early the
next year. The town named "linn" is now Lynn, Ma.    

 Essex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1638-1881.Online database. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2014. (From records supplied by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives.)

I once again found a transcription by George Ernest Bowman in his "Hawkes Notes"
article in The Mayflower Descendant:

Know all men by these Presents that Wheras there is an agrement made & put in writing under the hands & Seals of the Several parsons Concerned in the Estate of mr John Hawkes bearing date ye 4th Septemb[er] 1694 as a full & final Settlement of the Estate of the Said John Hawkes late of linn decd That the Said John Hawkes decd had a Son named Adam; who decd before him Self: the Sd Adam leving a widow 8: one only Son: Now Know yee that we whose names are hereunto Subscribed doe by these presents for our Selves our Heires Executors admrs or assignes remise release and for ever quit claim unto Elizabeth Hawkes relict widow of the aforesaid Adam Hawkes &unto John Hawkes only Son of the Said Adam Hawkes their Heires Exrs admrs & assignes: A Certaine parcel of upland and meadow Containing about four Score acres be ye Same more or less Sittuate in ye towne Ship of linn in ye County of Essex bounded with Sawgust river to ye west with a white oak to the East from thence to a walnut tree: northward with the land of Dann Eaton To have & to hold . . . . In Witness wherof we have hereunto Set our hands & Seals the  8th Day of Aprill I695.

It is to be understood that the above Sd parcel of land is to be clear & free (to the abovesd Eli[zabeth] and John Hawkes) from any incumbrance of what nature or kind So ever without any discount or allowans of any debts or legaces or any other thing whatsoever the abovesd parcel of land being laid out by mr Jn° Hawkes Senr dec'd in his life time to his Son Adams Widow & her Son John as a clear & absolute Estate of Inheritance in fee Simple without any Incumbrance wt soever as aforesaid , in Witness wherof we have set our hands & Seals ye day & year afores'd.

Signed Sealed & Delivered 
in psence of us
Steph: Sewall
John Croade
John Hawke(Seal)
thomas haw(Sea1)
ffrancis hutchinson(seal)
Guardian to Ebenezer Hawkes

The Mayflower Descendant, 1620-1920: A Quarterly Magazine of Pilgrim Genealogy and History, Volumes 17      Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants., Boston, Ma. 1915 pp222-228

Monday, June 29, 2015

52 ANCESTORS IN 52 WEEKS 2015 WEEK 25: ADAM HAWKES 1664-1691

Like many colonial New England families, the Hawkes used several given names over and over
through the generations. In my line of the family Adam and John were favorites. So I have two
Adams and two Johns alternating : Adam, John, Adam, John. My subject for this post is 8x great grandfather Adam Hawkes (the second Adam).

I've very little information on this Adam. I've a date of his birth on 12May 1664, and of his death
on 18Nov 1691, both events taking place in Lynn, Ma. Sometime around 1689 he married a woman whose first name was Elizabeth. From what I've read there is a dispute about whether her last name
was Pratt, and I have not been able so far to find a record of the marriage. Adam and Elizabeth's only child, my 7x great grandfather John Hawkes was born in Lynn on 10Apr 1690.

Adam died three years before his father John Hawkes, which meant that his part of John's
estate would be given to his young son, and provisions must be made for that and his guardian. I'll discuss that in the post about the younger John Hawkes for Week 26 of the Challenge. 

Saturday, June 27, 2015


I was able to find the Probate Files for my ancestor John Hawkes over on the American
Ancestors website, and George Ernest Bowman had transcribed it for his "Hawkes Notes"
article in The Mayflower Descendant. John had died without making out a will, so the family
reached an agreement on how to divide the estate. Once again I found that some of my
ancestors differed on how they spelled their family name, even when they were living in the
same house or town. There are several variations of the name Hawkes in this agreement:

Essex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1638-1881.Online database. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2014. (From records supplied by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives.)

[From original document] This Indenture Covenant and Agreement made Between The Widdow and The Surviving children of mr John Hauks deceas’d one with Another Respectively with Reference to The setlement of The Estate of Lands and moveables That The said m' John Hauks Dyed Seized off which setlement According To This Indenture we whose names Are subscribed Doe Bind ourselves our heirs Executors for ever by These presents to Rest satisfyed And Contented and Contented with, never for The future to Molest or disturb each other farther Then what Is here Agreed upon but That Reall And harty Love and peace may be maintained between us suitable to The neer Relation we stand In one to Another The principle motive In This Covenant and Indenture.

Impr. Agreed, and Consented unto That Sarah Hauks our Honourd Mother Have for her Annuall Maintainance six pounds In money, or whatever Else she may have occasion for to her satisfaction; to be paid by John & Thomas Hawks and Ebenezer Hauks when sd Ebenezer he comes to The Age of Twenty one years, and In The mean Time sd John to pay his proportion for him; The said Bretheren to Bear an Equall proportion In The sd payment : Allsoe The sd Widdow Sarah Hauks to have The bigest of The Lower Rooms In The Dwelling house wheir she now Resides together with The Bed and Bedsted and furniture In sd Room and Improovement of The Household stuff and provision for Meat and Drink comfortable Dyet During her Abode with her sons In said House to be provided By John Hauks The consideration of The sd six pounds together with The premises The said widdow Sarah Hauks Doth Accept of, and rest satisfyed 8r contented with.

It. Agreed and Consented unto, That Moses Hauks (In consideration of The Lands willed To him By his Grandfather Adam Hauks and out of The Love that he Beareth to his Bretheren and Relations) The said Moses Doth Accept off and for ever to Rest satisfyed with The said Lands willed to him, and which he now enjoyeth viz as m' John Hauks decean and said Moses Agreed said Trect of Land or Lands to be Bounded, all and every The sd Bounds to stand firm and good without any molestation of any of his Bretheren; As Allsoe The sd Moses Hauks to have a certain percell of Land which his father John Hauks Dyed Seized off, six Acres be It more or Less Adjoining to the Lands of Moses Hauks Neer his Dwelling house Bounded Norwardly by a Brook and soe on to his own Lands called by The name of The horse pastor; The sd Moses Is hereby Allsoe discharged from paying any debts due from The estate of his father John Hauks deceasd or any Legacies whatsoever . and the south Bounds of said six Acres by a white oak tre, & ym west to a Rock And soe on to a Red oak Tre And see To The Brook.

It Agreed and Consented That John Hauks son to John Hauks deaceasd Is to have The Dwelling house of his father deceasd together with one hundred Acres of Land And meddow Adjoining be It more or Less Butted and Bounded westerly upon the Land of mr Geffords Norwardly upon The Land of Adam Hauks deeeasd southwardly upon the Brook Adjoining to the Land of Moses Hauks Estwardly upon The Land of Moses Hawks & Lyn Comon.

It Agreed And Consented That Thomas Hauks have his divisionall part of Land one Hundred Acres be It more or Less Butted and Bounded Southward upon The Land of Moses Hauks by a Brook which Runs Through Dexters marsh Soe called, westerly upon the Land of Sd Moses and Said Brook Estward upon The marsh called Dexters Marsh . Norward upon The Land of Sd Moses . Hauks

Essex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1638-1881.Online database. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2014. (From records supplied by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives.)

Agreed And Consented unto By Ebenezer Hauks and his Guardian Francis Hutchinson That The sd Ebenezer doe Accept of his Divisionall part of Land for his portion out of his fathers estate one hundred Acres within The Bounds of his fathers farm deceas‘d Be It more or Less Butted and Bounded Eastwardly at a great Rock with an heap of Stones and from Thence by a line to The Bridge neer The old orchard, westward by The side of Thomas Hauks his orchard and from the corner of the orchard westward to a stake by The Brook which Adjoins to Moses Hauks his Land . Southward upon the Town Comon . Allsoe a certain percell of Land to be The Sd Ebenezers which John Hauks deces‘d exchanged with The Town of Lyn Lying on Saugust River Adjoining to The Land of Moses Hauks.

Agreed and consented to That Mercy Hauks Have for her portion forty pounds In or as silver mony to Be paid By John Thomas and Ebenezer each to pay an Equall proportion Ebenezer his proportion when he Arives at The year of Twenty and one and John and Thomas To pay Their proportions to Sd Mercy within The Complement of fewer years next Ensuing The date of These presents, The sd Bretheren paying The Sd sum of monys to their sister Mercy, She doth discharg The State of her father deceasd In reference to her claim of her portion.

And for The Tru performance of The premises according to all Tru Intents and purposes we The Above mentioned persons Respectively Concerned have hereto set our hands and Aflixed our seals This fourth Day of September Anno Domini . one Thousand Six hundred ninety and fower.

Furthermore its Agreed before ye Signing Sealing 8: acknowledgment hereof . That John Hawkes & Thomas Hawkes & ffrancis Huchison Guardian to Ebenezer Hawkes shall Pay all ye Just Debts of ye Said John Hawkes Deceasd Out of their part & portion & ye rest to be no wayes Chargeable for ye Same.

Sign’d Seald and deliverd In The presents of us
Hananiah Hutchisson
beniaman Larrabe
Benjamin Hutchisson

Sarah  (her mark) Hauks (seal)
Moses Hawks (Seal)
John hawkes (Seal)
thomas hawkes (Seal)
ffrancis Huchison Guardian & behalfe of Ebenezer Hawkes  (Seal)
Marke of Elizabeth Hawk guardian to her son Jno Hawkes

Sarah Hawkes Moses Hawkes John Hawkes Thomas Hawkes . & Marcy Hawkes all personaly appeared before me ye Subscriber Judge of ye probate of Wills &c in ye County of Essex & acknowledged This Instrument together wth what is anexed relating to ye payment of ye debts to be thier act & Deed . This 3rd Day of December I694.
Barth Gedney

The Mayflower Descendant, 1620-1920: A Quarterly Magazine of Pilgrim Genealogy and History, Volumes 17      Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants., Boston, Ma. 1915 pp222-228

Friday, June 26, 2015


Here's this week's Findmypast Friday announcement of recently added record collections

"This week, we're bringing you over 644,000 new records and newspaper articles including:

Take a closer look at your family’s past with these exciting new additions.
 The Findmypast team"

 You can see fuller descriptions of what's been added here at Findmypast.

Full disclosure  I am a member of the Findmypast Ambassador Program which includes a
complimentary one year world subscription to Findmypast and a Findmypast First membership.

Thursday, June 25, 2015


My 9x great grandfather John Hawkes is one of the important (to me) ancestors on
my family tree because his marriage to second wife  Sarah Cushman is one of our family's
Mayflower connections. There is another family connection in that his first wife Rebecca
Maverick was sister to my 9x great grandmother Abigail (Maverick)Ward.

Here's information  on John's family from "Hawkes Notes", an article by George Ernest
Bowman in an issue of The Mayflower Descendent:

John Hawkes married, first, Rebecca Maverick3, a daughter of Moses and Remember2 (Allerton) Maverick. He married, for his second wife, Sarah Cushman3, a daughter of Elder Thomas and Mary2 (Allerton) Cushman. The two wives were own cousins, and granddaughters of Isaac1 Allerton of The Mayflower.

By the first wife, Rebecca, there was one child, Moses Hawkes, who married and had several children.

By the second wife, Sarah, there were four sons and four daughters; but three of the daughters died in childhood. The surviving children by this marriage were : Adam, John, Thomas, Mercy and Ebenezer, all of whom married and had children. -p222

The Mayflower Descendant, 1620-1920: A Quarterly Magazine of Pilgrim Genealogy and History, Volumes 17      Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants., Boston, Ma. 1915

My Dad is descended from Isaac Allerton through both his parents and the Hawkes connection
is through his mother Cora Berthella Barker:

Isaac Allerton & Mary Norris
Mary Allerton & Thomas Cushman
Sarah Cushman & Adam Hawkes
John Hawkes & Mary(Margery)Whitford
Eva Hawkes & John Bancroft         Eunice Hawkes & Jacob Walton
John Bancroft & Mary Walton
Sally(Sarah)Bancroft & Francis Upton
Hannah Upton & Cyrus Moore
Betsey Jane Moore & Amos Hastings Barker
Charlotte Lovenia Barker & Frank W Barker
Cora B, Barker & Floyd Earl Wesrt Sr
Floyd Earl West Jr and Anne Marie White. (my parents)

I've found John Hawkes' Probate File and we'll discuss that ncxt.

To be continued...

Monday, June 22, 2015


I found the images for Adam Hawkes' Probate File on the American Ancestor website. They
include the estate inventory:

Essex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1638-1881.Online database. New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2014. (From records supplied by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Archives.)

I found this transcription in The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674 (Google eBook):

Estate Of Adam Hawkes Of Lynn.
Inventory of the estate of Mr. Adam Hawks taken Mar. 18, 1671-2 by Thomas Newhall and Jeremiah Sweyen: in wearing Aparill, 5li. 17s.; a bedsteed, fetherbed, 2 fether pilows, Flock bed, on blanket, sheetts, curtins, vallenc and one Imbroadered coverlid, 14li.; bedsteed and beding belonging to it, 7li. 10s.; trundell bed and beding belonging to it, 2li. 10s.; one other bed and bedsteed, 3li.; bras and pewter, 3li. 14s.; Iron potts and kettells, .one pare of Andirons, — pare of trambrells. tow par of pott hoks, one cast backe, on friing pan, one pare of stilliards, one spitt, 5li. 7s.; tow croscut saws, one sith, one sikell, thre Axces, to par of Hoks, one Axtre pin, on sledg and ould Iron, Hi. 11s.; tow muskits, tow small ffowlling pes, tow Rest heads, 3li. 15s.; thre swords, one wachbill, on ould belt, one pistell and one Drum, 2li. 13s.; one Table, six Joyn stools, 2li. 2s.; one Cubbard, one Joynd chear, one chest, 2li. 8s.; Table cloths, napkins, tow snapsaks, Hi. 7s.; a bible and other Books, Hi.; one press, tow small tables, tow chairs, 2li. 8s.; a pare of banddilars, milk vesells, sivs, 14s.; a peas of black cloth, Hi. 6s.; cart wheells, plow and yoks, chayns, clevis and pin, beatell, tow weges, one forke and part of a cart Roop, 5li. 18s.; fouer oxcen, 21li.; seven cows with tow sucking calfs, 24li. 10s.; one tow yearling and tow yearlings, 4li. 5s.; tow Horses and tow mares, 17li.; sixten swyn one with another, 9li.; sadell and pillion, 15s.; loking glass and baskett, 7s.; tobakow and ould caske, 18s.; The Dwelling Hows and barne, 120li.; about nyn Hundred of boards, a stoke of bees, 2li. 16s.; five hundred and ffivty akers of land, 550li.; fouer Akers of upland, 2li.; total, 817li. 11s.; credit to the Estatt, 1Li. 15s.; Debts from the Esstat, 46li. 14s. -p254-255
The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674 (Google eBook)
Essex Institute,  Salem Ma, 1917

The file also contained a document as to how the estate was to be divided between Adam's

And here's an abstraction of that: 

Administration on the estate of Adam Haukes of Lynn was granted to John Hauks of Lynn, and certain articles of agreement were allowed. He was to give to his mother Mrs. Sarah Hauks, nine score acres of upland in Lynn, not joining to the farm, eight acres of medow in the great meadow, and one third of all the moveables; to Sarah Hauks, her daughter, four score and ten pounds, to be paid five pounds every two years until forty pounds is paid, and the fifty pounds at age or marriage; if she should die before said time to be paid to the widow, Sarah Hauks, all to be paid in corn or cattle; to Moses Hauks, son of John Hauks by Rebeckah Hauks, daughter of Mr. Moses Mavericke, as a legacy from his grandfather, Mr. Adam Hauks, one half of that farm in Lynn which the said Hauks lived and died upon, only for the housing, to pay the value thereof if he pleases, at age, and if he should die before, the estate to go to his father John Hauks and his children; to Mr. William Cogswell for his wife, four score and ten pounds, to be paid ten pounds yearly, in corn, cattle or goods; to Frances Huchisson, twenty pound, in corn, cattle or goods, to be made in two payments within two years; to Samuell Huchisson, Thomas Huchisson, Edward Huchisson and Elizabeth Hart, five pounds each, within twelve months time, in corn or cattle; all the residue to John Hauks.
Signed Mar. 27, 1672, by Sarah (her x mark) Hauks, Francis Hutchinson, Moses Mavericke, John Hauks, William Cogswell.

Approved and allowed Mar. 26, 1672 in Ipswich court.
 Essex County Probate Files, Docket 12,899.
The Probate Records of Essex County, Massachusetts: 1665-1674 (Google eBook)
Essex Institute,  Salem Ma, 1917

Sarah (Hooper) Hawkes went on to marry Thomas Wardwell in 1673. She, her husband, and daughters Sarah Hawkes and Mercy Wardwell were accused of witchcraft in 1692. Thomas
Wardwell was hung, but Sarah and the daughters were eventually released.

Sunday, June 21, 2015


In honor of Father's Day I'm posting pictures of some of the fathers on my family tree. From the Wests:

My Dad, Floyd E West, Jr.


Great grandfather Philip J. West, Cousin Stanley & Grandfather Floyd E West, Sr.

2x great grandfather Jonathan P.West & wife Louisa Almata (Richardson)West
3x Great grandfather John Cutter West
Some of the maternal grandfather's from Dad's family:

2x great grandfather Asa F Ellingwood & wife Florilla (Dunham)Ellingwood.

2x Great grandfather Amos Hastings Barker & wife Betsy Jane (Moore) Barker.
3x Great grandfather Philip Richardson

And the only picture I have from Mom's side of the family:
Great grandfather John McFarland & wife Annie (Kelley)McFarland.

Happy Fathers' Day!

Friday, June 19, 2015


Here's this week's Findmypast Friday announcement of new record collections recently added
to Findmypast:

"This week, we're bringing you over 2.9 million new records and newspaper articles including:

 We've also been highlighting more great military collections in our latest Off The Record blog.
The Findmypast team" 

You can see fuller descriptions of what's been added here at Findmypast.

Full disclosure  I am a member of the Findmypast Ambassador Program which includes a
complimentary one year world subscription to Findmypast and a Findmypast First membership.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015


 ((Today is the 240th Anniversary of the Battle of Bunker Hill. Several of my ancestors took
part in the battles, including my 5x great grandfather Elisha Houghton. I first posted this on 21
August, 2012:)) 

I mentioned my ancestor Elisha Houghton the other day and
that he was a veteran of the Revolutionary War. I found this
story about him in History of the Town of Harvard, Massachusetts
1732-1893 by Henry Steadman Nourse (p323):

"Coliney of the Massachusetts Bay.

To the Honnorabel General Coart seting at Watertown the Petion
of Elisha Houghton a Solder under Comand of Captan Hastings in Conl
Whitcomb's Rigement in the year 1775 and I was in the fight on Bunkers
hill So Called in Charlston on the 17 of June in the year 1775 as above
sd and on my Return I and others Lited on one Jacob Davis who was
wounded who requested our help and in tacking Care of the sd Davis
Caused me your Petinor to take Mistick Road to convey the sd Davis to
where he thought he could be tacken Care of and in so Doing 1 came
acros by Winter hill to go to head Quater at Cambridge and in Coming
by the Gard of Connal Starks which was set on sd hill they took away
my Gun which I and others that Knew sd Gun Judged to be worth teen
Dolers. I Endevuered to Recover my Gun again but was Denied the
Same which may be made Evident to this Coart by Reading the Paper
acompining this Petition. 1 also Sertify this Coart that I have Never
Reseved my Gun since Nor any Consideration for the same. I therefore
your Poor Petitioner Humbly Pray that this Coart would be Pleased to
take my Case into your Consideration and alow me Pay for my Gun
and your Petitioner as in Duty bound Shall Ever Pray. Bolton Jan. the —
1776 Elisha Houghton

This may Certify that Elisha Houghton of Col Whitcomb's Regiment
in Capt. Hasting's Company was in the Action on Bunker's hill and
helping bringing the wounded men off to Cambridge went mistick Road over
Winter hill and the Guard that was set on winter hill took away the Guns,
and this sd Houghton's Gun was among the Rest, the next Day with [a]
number of others sd Houghton went in order to Get his Gun with an officer
with him, but could not find it and have Never heard of it since—as I know of.

Josiah Whitney, Lt. Col. of sd Rgmt.
Dorchester Camp Febury 29th. 1776"

I don't know if Elisha ever got recompensed for his lost gun, but I suspect he
was one of the earliest victims of "requisitioning" in the American military tradition.


For Week 23 of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge, I turn to the family of another
of the women who married into the Upton line, Eve Hawkes. Eve's immigrant ancestor was
Adam Hawks, also spelled Hawkes. Adam is given short but glorious mention in a "puff piece"
of the sort common in 19th and early 20th century genealogies and local histories: 

HAWKS: In the memorable fleet which sailed from Southampton, England, with seventeen hundred Puritan emigrants under Winthrop, and landed at Salem, Massachusetts, in June, 1630, was Adam Hawks, or Hawkes, who became the progenitor of a numerous branch of the family in America. One of his descendants has recently written of him: “Adam Hawkes, founder of the numerous and respectable family that bears the name throughout the country, was one of the advance guard of hard-headed Englishmen who for liberty of conscience, not loving England less but freedom more, took wife and children and household goods, braved the perils of trackless seas, dared the wiles of savage races in an unknown world, and sowed the seed that has grown the highest civilization the earth has ever known.” He was of Charlestown in 1634, but received large grants of land in that part of Lynn now Saugus. He was a farmer, and settled on land where iron ore was found. Soon after his settlement his house was burned, the occupants, a servant and twin infants, escaping. His second house sheltered some of his kindred for two centuries, being taken down in 1872, two hundred years after his death, and on one of the chimney bricks was found the date 1601, probably written in the soft clay when the brick was moulded in England. Adam Hawks married first. Ann Hutchinson, who died December 4, 1669; children: Adam; John, born about 1633: Moses; Benjamin; Thomas and Susanna. He married second, June, 1670, Sarah Hooper; child: Sarah, born June 1, 1671-p357
Genealogical and Personal Memoirs Relating to the Families of Boston and Eastern Massachusetts, Volume 1,  ed. by William Richard Cutter, Lewis historical Publishing Company, Boston, Ma. 1908

There are a few errors in this information. In the entry for Adam Hawkes in The Great Migration (pp253-257), it's pointed out that he and his family probably did not arrive with the Great Fleet since there is no record of them in Charlestown before 1634,and that Sarah Hutchinson was a widow when Adam married her. That is shown in Adam's Probate file which mentions five step-children, Francis, Thomas, Samuel, Edward, and Elizabeth, all with the Hutchinson surname. There is no evidence of children named Adam or Moses from this marriage, just a son John and daughter Susannah.

I've found the Probate File images and also an abstract. I'll discuss those next.
To be continued:

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


The passenger list from the S.S. Deutschland with my 2x great grandparents names on the fourth & fifth lines.

This past Saturday, June 13th, was the anniversary of the arrival of my German 2x great grandparents Charles Offinger and Joanna Luick's arrival in New York in 1870. I mentioned
it on Facebook, along with the fact that the ship that brought them here was the S.S. Deutschland, out of Bremen, Germany. Terri Kallio, one of my Facebook genealogy friends, asked me if it was the same ship that sank in 1875. I had to admit I didn't know, so Terri sent me a link to a Wikipedia article about the ship, and yes, indeed, it was the same ship. It ran aground neat Kent, England on 6Dec 1875 and it wasn't until the next day that the 135 survivors could be rescued. By then, 78 crewmen and passengers had died.

Terri also sent me a link to a poem about the tragedy. It turns out that among the passengers who died in the shipwreck were five German Catholic nuns headed to America to escape religious persecution.  The English poet Gerard Manley Hopkins who was a Catholic priest wrote a long poem about it, The Wreck of the Deutschland. The link Terri sent me was to a YouTube version which uses a clever bit of animation to make it seem as if a portrait of Hopkins is reciting the poem.

When I went looking for a printed version of it, I discovered it was much longer. I won't
show the complete poem here, but there are a few verses in the second part about the
first few hours after the wreck occurred:

        On Saturday sailed from Bremen,   
        Take settler and seamen, tell men with women,   
            Two hundred souls in the round—   
    O Father, not under thy feathers nor ever as guessing   
    The goal was a shoal, of a fourth the doom to be drowned;   
        Yet did the dark side of the bay of thy blessing          
Not vault them, the million of rounds of thy mercy not reeve even them in?   

            Into the snows she sweeps,   
            Hurling the haven behind,   
        The Deutschland, on Sunday; and so the sky keeps,   
            For the infinite air is unkind,           
    And the sea flint-flake, black-backed in the regular blow,   
    Sitting Eastnortheast, in cursed quarter, the wind;   
        Wiry and white-fiery and whirlwind-swivell├Ęd snow   
Spins to the widow-making unchilding unfathering deeps.   

            She drove in the dark to leeward,           
            She struck—not a reef or a rock   
        But the combs of a smother of sand: night drew her   
            Dead to the Kentish Knock;   
    And she beat the bank down with her bows and the ride of her keel:   
    The breakers rolled on her beam with ruinous shock;           
       And canvas and compass, the whorl and the wheel   
Idle for ever to waft her or wind her with, these she endured.   

            Hope had grown grey hairs,   
            Hope had mourning on,   
        Trenched with tears, carved with cares,           
            Hope was twelve hours gone;   
    And frightful a nightfall folded rueful a day   
    Nor rescue, only rocket and lightship, shone,   
        And lives at last were washing away:   
To the shrouds they took,—they shook in the hurling and horrible airs.

So the German steamship that had brought my 2x great grandparents to America came
to an untimely end five years later, along with other German immigrants who would not
live to see their American dreams come true.

Thanks to Terri Kallio for helping me discover this story.

Friday, June 12, 2015


I recently became a member of the Findmypast Ambassador Program which includes a
complimentary one year world subscription to Findmypast and a Findmypast First membership.
I haven't been able to do much research on my European ancestors so this is a great oppurtunity
for me.

As part of the Findmypast First membership I get an email announcement every Friday on
what new record collections have been added to the website, and this week's additions look
promising because they include areas of England where my ancestors lived:

"This week, we've added over 42,500 new resources including:

You can see more detailed descriptions of these records here.

I'm still getting the hang of the Findmypast website, and will be blogging more about it as I go along.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015


I know there are some genealogists who feel that social media is wasting time
better spent in doing research. But having a presence on Facebook and/or Google
Plus can be quite valuable for genealogy, as I've found out. The trick is, first, don't get
mired down in the games, (I only play Words With friends, nothing else.) and second,
join the Genealogy Groups and Pages that pertain to the areas you are researching.

I'm a native New Englander, as are all my direct ancestors on our Dad's side of the family.
So I've joined a bunch of New England genealogy groups on Facebook. Some are for
particular families, some for certain towns and areas, and some just general New
England groups. I've been able to make contact with new distant cousins through these
groups and exchanged information with them, and as a result I've made new discoveries
in my own research. The most recent example of this happened just the other day.

One of the members of the Massachusetts Genealogy Network Facebook group asked a
question "Is Benjamin Barrows a proven son of George Barrows?".  He was referring to
George Barrows, 1670-1758, who happens to be my 6x great grandfather. I have a Benjamin
Barrows listed among his children, but no record of his birth. My source was the Ellingwood
Family genealog written by my cousin Florence O'Connor.  But rereading that part of the
book, I found she mentioned how George Barrows' estate was divided among the children.
Now I'd found Probate Files for George Barrows' father, and for his son, but not for George
as yet. So I went over to FamilySearch,Massachusetts, Plymouth County, Probate Estate Files, 1686-1915 collection and voila! I found George Barrows' Probate File.

Here's the two pages of the Will, and Benjamin Barrows is  listed on both of them.

 "Massachusetts, Plymouth County, Probate Estate Files, 1686-1915," images, FamilySearch (,1078346401 : accessed 10 June 2015), Plymouth > Case no 1067-1096, Barrell, Noah Jr.-Barrows, George D. > image 606 of 631; Supreme Judical Court, Boston.

Also in the file is a letter a fellow Barrows descendant wrote over forty years ago in which he
describes why George's son Peleg Barrows, the executor of the estate didn't file George's will
until 1792.(He went off on the campaign against Quebec and forgot about it,)

I shared the link to the FamilySearch file with my new found Barrows cousin. I'd found an
answer to his question, and because he'd asked it, I'd found a family document I hadn't had
before, and learned a bit of family history as well.

And that is why I say social media is not a waste of time for genealogists!

Monday, June 08, 2015


The subject for Week 22 of the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge is my 8x great grandfather
Samuel Walton, for whom online information is somewhat scarce.  

I'm afraid Josiah Proctor Walton gives short shrift to those members of the Walton family
who aren't in his direct line. Here's the short entry he wrote for Samuel :

2 Samuel Walton, son of Rev. William Walton1, born June 5th, 1639; married, 1674, Sarah Maverick, of Marblehead; removed to Mauldin, later to Lynnfield.


1. Samuel.

2. John3, born Jan. 31,1685; died Jan. 31, 1774, age 89.

3. Elizabeth.


Walton Family Records, 1598-1898: With Its Intermarriages, the Oakes and Eatons, 1644-1898 and the Proctor Family, 1634-1898 (Google eBook)  Josiah Proctor Walton, Muscatine, Iowa, 1888

"Mauldin" would be the town of Malden in Middlesex County.

Now, I've found that five children of Samuel and Sarah named John, Martha, Mary,
Samuel and William were baptized together on 26Oct 1684 in Marblehead, Ma. Elizabeth
may have been born later, and the other children not named by Josiah Proctor Walton
probably died in childhood. Other than being mentioned in the settlement of his father's
estate, I haven't found too much else about Samuel's life. He was a member of the Marblehead
Board of Selectmen with his brother Nathaniel Walton and his relative by marriage Moses

Samuel Walton died on 22Mar 1718 in Reading, Ma., four years after Sarah (Maverick) Walton
passed on 10Jun 1714. I am descended from their son, John Walton.

Saturday, June 06, 2015


These are my male ancestors on my mother's side as far back as I've been able to
trace them so far. While Dad's ancestors in the 19th century lived in rural Maine, Mom's
came over from Germany and Ireland and settled in Massachusetts, living in Cambridge
and Boston.  My 2x great grandfathers were artisans, although Patrick G White didn't
work at being a gilder very long, turning to other occupations. My Irish McFarland
and White great grandfathers worked at more physical jobs. Finally, my grandfather
Edward F White Sr. worked at a variety of places but there is a big gap in my knowledge
of what he was doing in the time after his divorce from my grandmother while he
was avoiding the court orders to pay child support for my Mom and her brother.

Here's what I've found out so far about this side of the family:

2x great grandfathers
Patrick G White (1848-1902)
1870 Marriage Record Gilder
!880  Census  Retail Grocer
1902 death Record Clerk

Charles Offinger (1848-1881)
1870 Census Cabinetmaker
1870 Marriage Record Cabinetmaker
1880 Census Cabinetmaker
1881 Death Record  Cabinetmaker

Great grandfathers
John McFarland (1852-1924)
1900 Census Laborer
1910 Census Laborer Street Dept.
1920 Census Gardener City
1924 Death Record Retired

Edward J White (1873-1939)
1895 Marriage Record Teamster
1900 Census Teamster
1910 Census  Teamster Wholesale Flour
1920 Census Stage Builder Government
1930 Census Teamster City of Boston

Edward F White Sr (1899-1981)
1920 Census Steamfitter Railroad
1924 Marriage Record Steamfitter
1981 Death Certificate Retired Security Guard
1981 Obituary School Crossing Guard and Cab Driver  

Friday, June 05, 2015


Just a few quick thoughts about the occupations of my Dad's male ancestors:

-All Dad's family lived in Maine and New Hampshire from the late 18th and early 19th
centuries on. so the main occupation on the list is farming. But some of them alternated that
with working at things that they could do while still living on their farms: miller, "lumbering",
blacksmith, or wheelwright. In some cases their sons were working the farm they all lived on.

-I've blogged before about my 3x great grandfather being on the 1850 Census for both the
neighboring towns of Mason and Albany, Maine. I'm still not sure how that happened, unless
his property straddled the town line with the mill being in Mason which would explain the two different occupations as well.

-Two of my ancestors, Nathaniel Barker and John Laughton V, appeared to have turned their
farms over to their sons and moved into town where they were working as "laborers" in their 70's.

-Great grandfather Frank W. Barker was the only ancestor in these generations to not have
worked at farming as an adult. I wonder if it was just a matter of better pay or if he was
drawn in by the excitement of working for a railroad?

-It will take me a bit longer to list the occupations of earlier ancestors in Dad's family since
the censuses before 1850 don't list occupations. Other documents, such as Probate files and
Land Records will help me there, as well as the information in court case files and family

As for my Mother's side of the family, since I don't have much information about the
ancestors who lived in Germany and Ireland, the list of occupations will be shorter. I'll
deal with that in another post. 

Tuesday, June 02, 2015


Randy Seaver's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun Challenge this past Saturday was something
I had been thinking of doing already but hadn't done as yet:

For this week's mission (should you decide to accept it), I challenge you to:
1)  Geneablogger Diane Gould Hall posted WORKDAY WEDNESDAY – What kind of work did your ancestors do? on her Michigan Family Trails blog this past week, and I thought the topic could be used as an SNGF post.

2)  Please go back several generations (say parents or grandparents or great-grandparents) and list the occupations that they had in the records you've found for them.  You could do this, say, by ancestor table number.

3)  Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment on this blog post, or in a post on Facebook or Google+.

It took me the past few days to work on this because of the amount of information I had to
look through, which is mostly on my Dad's side of the family. For that reason this post
will deal with my paternal line, and my Mom's family will be in a seperate post.

Here's what my Dad's ancestors worked at going back to some of my 4x great grandfathers
Floyd E West Sr (1893-1970)

1915 WW1 Army Enlistment Record- "Knowledge of any vocation: Farming"
1920 Census- Occupation-Farmer  Industry-Cropper
1923 Upton  Directory-Farmer  and saw mill
1925 Oxford County Business Directory-saw mill
1927 Upton Directory "frmr moved to Wentworth Location, NH"
1940 Census- Occupation "Operates tractor  Industry- lumbering"

Great Grandfathers
Philip J West (1868-1954)

1910 Census Farmer
1920 Census Occupation-Farmer  Industry-General Farming
1923 Upton  Directory-Farmer  and saw mill
1925 Oxford County Business Directory-saw mill
1927 Upton Directory frmer and saw mill
1930 Census Occupation-Millwright  Industry-Birch Mill
1940 Census-Occupation- Sawyer  Industry-Saw Mill

Frank W Barker (1865-1905)
1898 Marriage Record "Railroading"
1900 Cenus Railroad baggagemaster
1905 Death Record Baggagemaster G.T.R.  (Grand Trunk Railroad)

2x Great Grandfathers
Jonathan P West (1834-1917)

1860 Census Farmer
1870  Census Farmer
1880  Census Farmer
1900  Census Farmer

Asa Ellingwood (1828-1921)
1850 Census-Wheelwright
1860 Census-Mechanic
1870 Census-Farmer
1880 Census-Farmer
1921 Death Record-Farmer

Amos H Barker (1828-1907)
1860 Census Farmer
1870 Census Farmer
1880 Census Farmer  
1900 Census Farmer

Nathaniel S. Barker (1830-1884)
1860 Census Millman
1870 Census Farmer
1880 Census Farmer  

3x great grandfathers
John Cutter West (1802-1862)

1850 Census Blacksmith
1860 Census-Farmer & Blacksmith

Philip Richardson (1794-?)
1850  Census Farmer
1860  Census Farmer
1870  Census Farmer
1880 Census Farmer

James T Dunham (1805-1888)
1850 Census  Wheelwright
1860 Census Farmer
1870 Census Wheelwright

Nathaniel Barker (1794-1884)
1850  Census Farmer
1860  Census Farmer
1870  Census Laborer

Wesley Coburn (1802-1877)
1850 Census Wheelwright (29Aug 1850, Albany, Me)
1850 Census Miller (26Aug 1850, Mason, Me)

4x great grandfathers
James Dunham  (1775-1864)

1864  Death Record  Farmer

John Laughton (1790-?)
1850  Census Farmer
1860 Census Laborer

Before I discuss my Mom's lines, I'll have a brief post about some of the things in this post.

To be Continued...