Friday, July 17, 2015


The testimony in the case of Thomas Tuxbury would make a great PBS Masterpiece Theater drama. There's Thomas' unrequited(maybe)love for a married woman, his involvement with a widow, the pesky matter of a wife and children who may or may not exist back in Merry Olde England, and pithy language used as witnesses recount what was said at various times

Besides Thomas' Hoyt relatives, there are other of my Essex County ancestors appearing here and there in the testimony, like the Baileys and Lt. Phillip Challis.

Here's the first part of the testimony:

Summons, dated Sept. 13, 1674, to Richard Marten and Mary his wife, to answer complaints against the said Mary for suspicious carriages with Thomas Tuexbery, tending to evil consequences if not prevented, at the house of Robt. Pike, signed by Robt. Pike*, for the court.

Bond for appearance at Major Denison's court at Ipswich of Thomas Tuexbury, with John Bayly and Joseph Bayly, his son, as sureties, upon complaint of Georg Marten and John Jimson.

George Martinn's* and John Jimson's petition, dated Sept. 10, 1674, to the honored Major Pike to stop said Tuexbury's disturbances.

 Left. Philip Chalic and Jaret Hadn, aged sixty-nine years, deposed that they were selectmen with Sergt. Hoyt, and understanding that Thomas Tuksbery was resident in the town at Sergt. Hoyt's house, they forewarned him that he must give a bond not to charge the town. They also understood that said Thomas had a wife and children in England, but Hoyt said he could stay because there was a letter signifying that he was free and could settle as other single men, which letter the widow Bartlett pulled out of her bosom, the letter pretending to be from a minister of his town in England. Seeing two hands on it, deponents conceived it to be some counterfeit thing to delude the widow and so they told her father, etc. Sworn, Sept. 16, 1674, before Robt. Pike,* commissioner. 

Mary Marten and Naomy Hoyt deposed. Sworn, 16 : 7 : 1674, before Robt. Pike,* commissioner. 

Thomas Fowler, aged about thirty-nine years, deposed that sometime before he loaned his horse to the widow Bartlet to ride to Boston to Thomas Tuksbery, he was at the said widow's house at Newbery and heard them promise to marry one another. Sworn, Sept. 2, 1674, before Robt. Pike,* commissioner. 

Thomas Wells, aged twenty-seven years, deposed that the letter contained news of the death of said Tuxeberry's wife and that upon examination he found that the letter was written in one hand and the superscription in another, that the name subscribed was Charls Chere, as well as he could remember, who said he hoped said Tuxeberry would not forget to show a fatherly affection for his children. Further that the letter was directed by superscription to Henry Tuxeberry in New England, dwelling near Newberey and by inscription to Thomas Tuxeberry, etc. Sworn, Sept. 21, 1674, before Robt. Pike,* commissioner.

Susanna Marten deposed that hearing a rumor and being desired by several of her neighbors to go to her brother Hoyt's house concerning one Thomas Tukesberry whom they thought would be a trouble to her son Richard in making a disturbance between him and his wife, she went and spoke to her sister Hoyt. She asked her to forbear his coming to her house if it were but to stop the mouths of people, for their mouths were open, but her sister Hoyt replied "let them shut them againe, for here he should come in spite of your teeth or any bodys els, can we not entertaine a godly man for a stranger ile tumble your son out a doors I sayd againe if you doo hee have a fathers house to come too my cousin naomy Hoyt then spake thes words and sayd sister if I ware as you if unckell tukesbery migght not come to me I would goe to him for you cannot goe to better man then unckell tukesberry is in my mind." Sworn, Sept. 16, 1674, before Robt. Pike,* commissioner. 

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

I got a kick out of the Widow Bartlett's keeping ther letter in question close at hand "in her bosom",
and the response of the Hoyt women to Susanna Martin's visit.

To be continued

No comments: