Wednesday, January 27, 2016


My 8x great grandmother Sarah (Proctor) Chamberlain was the daughter of Robert Proctor and
Jane Hildreth, and is mentioned in her father's will. He had immigrated from England, settled at
Concord, Ma. originally, and was one of the founders of Chelmsford, Ma. Here's a biographical
sketch of Robert by William Richard Cutter:

(1) Robert Proctor, immigrant ancestor in America of the Proctor family here dealt with, was probably born in England, and died at Chelmsford, Massachusetts, April 28, 1697. He first appears in this country at Concord, Massachusetts, where he was made a freeman in 1643. He may have come from England with the three other Proctors already named. There is. however, another tradition concerning his ancestry. Under date of July 26, 1897, Mrs. Lucretia H. Lawrence, of Leominster, a daughter of Jacob Proctor, of Littleton, Massachusetts, writes as follows: “My father in his last days dwelt much upon the history of his family and events of his early life. He said his grandfather (who was Nathaniel Proctor. a great-grandson of Robert, of Concord) “told him that three brothers from a wealthy family in Scotland came to this country in a ship of their own. One of the brothers settled in or near Chelmsford. The Littleton branch descended from this brother. My father remembered visits back and forth with the Chelmsford relations”. The conflict between these traditions must remain unsettled. at least until additional evidence in favor of one or the other can be obtained.

In 1653 Robert Proctor, in connection with Richard Hildreth and twenty—seven others, pe— titioned the general court for a grant of land six miles square, “to begin at Merrimack river at a neck of land next to Concord River, and so run up by Concord River south and west into the country to make up the circumference or quantity of land as above expressed". The petition was granted. In 1654 Mr. Proctor removed to the new plantation which was organized November 22, 1654, as a town under the name of Chelmsford. The first four or five of his children were born in Concord, the others in Chelmsford. His descendants resided in many of the neighboring towns. and at an early date some of them pushed back into the wilderness and settled in New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York, and have since scattered over the west. Letters of administration on his estate were granted to Jane Proctor, executrix, July 13, 1697. Some of his children settled in what afterwards became the West Precinct, and later the town of Westford.

Robert Proctor married, December 31, 1645, Jane, eldest daughter of Richard Hildreth, of Concord and Chelmsford, ancestor of the Hildreths of America, who died at Chelmsford in 1688. Children: 1. Sarah, born October 12, 1646; married, August 10, 1666, Thomas Chamberlain. 2. Gershom, May 13, 1648. 3. Mary, April 20, 1650; married, 1685, John Bourne. 4. Peter, 1652. 5. Dorothy, 1654; married, December 18, 1679, John Barret Jr. 6. Elizabeth, December 16, 1656; became, in ' 1705, the third wife of Samuel Fletcher. 7. James, January 8, 1658. 8. Lydia, February 19, 1660, died August 13, 1661. 9. John, August 17, 1663. 10. Samuel, of whom further. 11. Israel, April 29, I668. 12. Thomas, April 30, 1671, went to sea, and there is no evidence that he returned.-

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 1 ,
Lewis historical publishing Company,  New York, N.Y., 1913

I've found Robert Proctor's probate file on and will discuss that next.

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