Florence Orcutt's Notes

Orcutt Women

Mary Martha Lane

Jane Emerson

Mary Gardiner

Prudence Hayden

Mehitable Vining

Dora Cook


Edson, Emerson, Farrow, Gardiner, Hayden, Judkins, Judson, Lane, MacKay, Orcutt, Stetson, Urquhart, & Vining


Deborah "Dora" Cook Orcutt, wife of WEO
William Edwin Orcutt
Florence Pluma Waters probably before she married RWO and became an Orcutt
Robert William Orcutt as a young man
Florence Pluma Waters Orcutt

(compiled by Judy Orcutt Holy)

Mary Martha Lane

The first Orcutt to America (actually 2nd since the first was William Orcutt’s purported sister Susannah Orcutt Edson, who immigrated with her husband Samuel Edson in 1638) bearing the Orcutt name (or a version of it!): William Orcutt, who married Mary Martha Lane, January 24, 1663/64

Background to their marriage:

William Orcutt appears to have emigrated from England (baptismal record from Fillongley, Warwickshire, England, 6 December, 1618 in the name William Orchar, son of William Orchar, a name supposedly modified from the Scottish Urchard/Urquhart) and arrived in this country prior to this marriage date.  Some sources say he came in 1660, arrived in Weymouth, MA, moved to Scituate/Marshfield.   One tradition from the John line (Helen G. Judson) says he was a cabin boy on the second ship to Plymouth [this would make sense if the second ship refers to a Mayflower fleet in 1630, but this needs to be confirmed; it couldn’t be the 1621 ship, since he would have been 3-4 years old at that time; JOH], and later became a seaman; this view could account for few records or any land purchase/grant between 1664 (or earlier) and the family’s move to Bridgewater apparently after October 7, 1683 -- the year daughter Deborah was baptised in 2nd Church Scituate, also the year William purchased property in Bridgewater -- or shortly thereafter, since last child of 12, daughter Susannah, was born in Bridgewater in 1685.

Earlier tradition:  according to research and records obtained and compiled in 1968 by Helen Judson, an Orcutt family genealogist for the John line, members of the Scots family Urquhart--sons of Thomas Urquhart of Cromarty who died in 1557--migrated to England from Scotland.  [JOH:  This may have occurred possibly following the 1547 Battle of Pinkie (during which 7 of the supposedly 25 sons of Thomas Urquhart of Cromarty died; interestingly, the Earl of Warwick, John Dudley, commanded the 4,000 English cavalry during the Battle of Pinkie; 1,500 prisoners were taken) or during Mary Tudor’s (Bloody Mary) reign, 1553-1558.] According to the famous Sir Thomas Urquhart, some Urquharts settled in Carlisle (and became mayors there) just south of the Scotland border, one settled in Devonshire; so possibly one or more settled in Warwickshire, where Fillongley is located.  Edson family genealogists (see below) remark that Susannah (William’s sister, born February, 1618) Orcutt’s family had long been in Warwickshire in 1638 (Carroll Edson, Vol. I, p. 28).  The Earl of Warwick, Robert Rich, had promoted colonization in Massachusetts Bay through his aid to the New England Company.  Consequently, many young people from the rural districts of Warwickshire became interested in emigrating, Samuel Edson with his wife Susannah Orcutt Edson among them.  Some have supposed William Orcutt accompanied them, but no record of William Orcutt has been located in Salem between 1638 and 1651 when the Edsons moved to Bridgewater.   It is Elijah Hayward (Edson descendent) who, in writing an account of the Edson family of Bridgewater, states that Susanna Orcutt is supposed to have been a sister of William Orcutt who came from Scituate and settled in Bridgewater (2 sources for this information: Elijah Hayward’s 1853 handwritten Account of the Edson family, first page, found by JOH in Edson file in Old

Bridgewater Historical Society records; also on p. 4 of A Genealogical Account of the Edsons, Early Settled in Bridgewater, with Appendices by the Rev. Theodore Edson and Elijah Hayward, printed in 1864).

Mary Martha Lane, daughter of Andrew and Tryphena (_____) Lane, was born in 1640, baptized in Hingham, MA, on Aug. 16, 1646 together with two of her siblings. [Many earlier and current genealogists mistakenly give Mary’s birthdate as August 16, 1646; however, the three siblings baptised that day were not triplets.  For Mary’s birthyear 1640, see Lane Genealogies by James Hill Fitts, Vol II, 1897, p. 10; this is source for much of the information on the Lane family; dates and birth places for William Lane’s children comes from a document Descendants of William Lane produced by Janice M. Castleman, obtained 8/29/00 over the Internet: www.familytreemaker.com/users/c/a/s/Janice--M-Castleman/GENE4-1110.html]

Her father, Andrew Lane was born in England and emigrated to America in 1635, becoming an original proprietor in Hingham, Mass.

Andrew Lane’s father was William Lane [some Lane researchers say born 1580 in Dorset, England], a resident of Dorchester, Mass. as early as 1635. [Fitts gives no information about William Lane’s wife; some researchers speak of 2 wives, Mary Killoway about 1609; Agnes Farnsworth, m. 1618 in England; others refer only to Farnsworth.   There are no records referring to a living wife of William Lane in America.]  Several grants of land were assigned to William Lane in 1637.  His mark (X) as a proprietor is on a document dated 1641, relinquishing some land on Thomson’s Island to the town of Dorchester for the maintenance of a Free School.  According to Fitts Lane Genealogies, vol. II,  p. 2: This ancestor of a numerous posterity was a person of competent property, a freeman, a virtuous and good citizen who evidently had the esteem and confidence of the people.  His daughter Mary was the widow of Joseph Long, and he lived with her several years and died apparently in 1654 (his will is given in Fitts, vol. II, pp. 2-3.).

Children of William Lane in the order mentioned in his will:

I. Elizabeth, b. Norfolk, England about 1615, m. Thomas Rider, who came to America in ship Hercules, 1634; a caulker by trade, residing in Dorchester and Boston.  They received by her father’s will, my new dwelling house in Dorchester, etc.  Their daughter Hannah was b. Boston, 7 Mar., 1655/56.

II.  Mary, b. Norfolk, England about 1620, m. first, Joseph Long, who lived and died in England, leaving two sons who came with their mother and grandfather Lane to Dorchester.  She m. second, Joseph Farnsworth, of Dorchester, a widower with four children.  They received by her father’s will the Great Lot estimated 24 acres, and personal estate.  He was a freeman Mar. 14, 1639; selectman, 1647; and died 12 June 1660.  She was living a widow in 1690. 


Her children by Joseph Long: 1. Joseph, Senior, res. Dorchester, m. 3 Feb. 1662, Mary, and d. 26 Aug., 1676.  Children Mary, Sarah, Joseph, Hannah, Alwen.  2.  Thomas, res. Roxbury, Mass. and had Thomas.
Her children by Joseph Farnsworth [related to William Lane’s second wife?]: 1.  Joseph; 2.  Samuel (who had children by 2 wives, Mary, Joseph); 3.  Esther; 4.  Elizabeth.

III.  Annis, b. England about 1610, m. there about 1630 Thomas Lincoln, and came to Hingham, Mass., about 1635, where both were members of the first church.  She died 1682-83.  Thomas Lincoln, the cooper and malster, [??] was granted 5 acres land in 1636; he was freeman 1638, was allotted 1680-81, a sitting in the seate under ye pulpit, and Mrs. Lincoln was assigned to the second seate next ye pew. He died 28 Sept., 1691.  His will dated July 13, 1688 mentions three sons and one daughter.  Their children:

1.  Child b. and d. in England; 2.  Sarah, b. England, d. soon after their arrival; 3.  Thomas, bap. Hingham 1638 who m. 1st Mary Chubbuck, 2nd Lydia Hobart (dau. of Rev. Peter Hobart), he was carpenter, constable, 1671, freeman 1672, selectman, 1684, 1688, 1691, ensign, lieutenant and captain, d. 1708, children Lydia, Mary, Thomas, Lydia, Josiah; 4.  Joseph, bapt. 1640, who m. 1st Prudence Ford, 2nd Sarah Bisbee Hopestill, he died 1716, children Joseph, Israel, Nehemiah and Elisha, all by first marriage; 5. Benjamin, bapt. 1643, m. Sarah Fearing, he was a malster, d. 1700, children John, Margaret, Benjamin (who was father of Col. Benjamin Lincoln, the personal friend of George Washington), Thomas, Jeremiah, Jonathan; 6.  Deborah, bapt. 1645, m. Samuel Thaxter (his 2nd wife), she d. 1694, children Deborah, Samuel, Abigail; 7.  Sarah, bapt. 1650, d.1658.

IV.  George, born in England about 1613, an original proprietor of Hingham.  (Rev. Peter Hobart and his colonists erected the plantation in July, 1635, when Hobart and 29 others drew houselots for themselves.)  Was a shoemaker.  He was assigned 1681/82 to the seate under ye pulpit and his wife to a sitting in the fore-seate for the women in the body of the meeting house.  Married Sarah Harris.  He died 1698, she 1694/95.  Their children:
1.  Sarah, bapt. 1637-38, m. Lieut. James Lewis who came to America in 1633, resided in Scituate where he united with the church in 1635, admitted freeman 1648, removed to Barnstable, Mass., where he was lieutenant and selectman, 1660, 1679, 1681, he d. 1713, children John, Samuel, Sarah, James, Susanna, Ebenezer, Mary, George, Hannah, Joseph.
2.  Hannah, bapt. 1638-39, m. Thomas Humphrey of Dover, NH, children George, William, Ebenezer, Joseph.
3.  Josiah, bapt. 1641, m. 1st Mary ____, 2nd, Deborah Gill.
4.  Susannah, bapt. 1644, m. 1665 (by Capt. Joshua Hobart) William Robbarts, child   
5.  Elizabeth, b. 1646, m. Walter Poor, children Walter, Elizabeth.
6.  John, b. 1647-48, m. Mehitable Hobart and Sarah Briggs.
7.  Ebenezer, bapt. 1650, m. Hannah Hersey.
8.  Mary, bapt. 1656, m. Mr. Ellis.

9.  Peter, bapt. 1656.  In King Phillip’s war he was on the roll of Capt. Samuel Moseley’s co. of Dorchester, at Dedham, 9 Xber [December], 1675 and again Dec. 10, 1675; enlisted in Capt. John Robertson’s co. of New England troops stationed at Annapolis Royal, Oct.10, 1710, and died Feb. 6, 1711; time of service 118 days.

V.  Sarah, b. England about 1611, wife of Nathaniel Baker, original settler in Hingham, and brother of Rev. Nicholas Baker, of Hingham and Scituate, Mass.; he was farmer, constable, 1668, selectman, 1661 and 1676, in active service in Philips War, 1675, died 1686 (will gave legacies to 2 Indian servants, grandchildren, and children of his deceased brother Nicholas, late of Scituate), she d. 1695; only 1 child: Mary, bapt. 1639, m. John Loring who came to Dorchester in America 1634 and settled in Hull, freeman 1673, representative 1692, she died 1679, he had 10 children with 2nd wife Mrs. Rachel Buchland.

VI.  ANDREW LANE, born in England about 1613, and became an original proprietor of Hingham, Mass. as did brother George.  He drew on Sept. 18, 1635, house-lot of five acres, No. 26 from the cove on the north side of the road to Fort Hill.  This was further described as
being located on Town (North) Street, Hingham as was the property of brother George.  Andrew Lane also had 10 acres granted him at Nutty Hill, and 6 shares of the common lands in subsequent divisions of the town.  On April 6, 1648, he purchased of Aaron Ludkin of Charlestown, a house-lot in Hingham containing 5 acres with a dwelling and buildings thereon, and bounded by land of George Lane.  He also bought lands at Pleasant Hill, at the Great Lots, at Weir River, at Squirrel Hill, at the Plain Neck and at Broad cove.   He was described as a feltmaker and farmer, an industrious, worthy citizen.  

Andrew Lane died 4 May, 1675, and his estate was appraised at 235 pounds, 3 shillings.  Triphena Lane and son Andrew Lane were administrators of his estate.  The inventory included dwelling house, barn, 8 acres home lot, salt meadow and other lands; four oxen, four cows, two yearlings, 2 calves, swine, piggs, bedding, wearing apparell, household goods, farming tools.

Andrew Lane’s wife’s surname is unknown.  She survived him (a Hingham record specifies the pew seat of Tripheny Lane as widow of Andrew Lane in the new meeting house, Jan. 5, 1681/82) and died in Hingham on 2 January, 1706/07 aged about 95 years.  (Thus born about 1612.)

The Lanes had 9 children, all baptised in Hingham [the minister may have been the first minister of Hingham, Peter Hobart]; birth dates here from Fitts do not always agree with records researched by Frederic Scott Orcutt:

1.  MARY, b. 1640, bap. 8/16/1646, m. 1/24/1663/64 William Orcutt, residence Weymouth, Scituate, and Bridgewater, Mass.  He d. about 1694.  Their twelve children were: William b. Weymouth, 1664, Andrew, b. 1666, d. 18 Aug., 1695, John b. Scituate 1669, m. four times, constable 1712, original member of second church, Hingham, 1721, d. Sept. 1753, Martha b. 1671, Joseph b. 1672, Mary and Hannah (twins) b. 1674 [FSO: 1675], Thomas b. 1675 [FSO

1677], Benjamin, b. 1679 [FSO 1680], Elizabeth, b. 1682, Deborah b. 1683, Susanna, b. Bridgewater, 1685.

2.  Abigail, b. 8/11/1642, bap. 8/16/1646 m. 12/27/1665 (by Capt. Joshua Hobart) Daniel Stodder who became a selectman for Hingham, and died at the very advanced age of 103 years, 5 months and 9 days.  She d. 1707, age 61 years.  Eleven children: Daniel, Abigail, Sarah, Deborah, Rebecca, Josiah, Lydia, Joseph and Jael (twins), Ruth, Lydia (born and died same year as 1st Lydia).

3.  Andrew, bap. 8/16/1646.  m. 12/5/1672 Elizabeth Eames, dau. of Mark and Elizabeth Eames [her grandfather, Lt. Anthony Eames, was the first local commander of Hingham -- there is extensive reporting of controversy regarding jurisdiction, authoritative office between the Rev. Peter Hobart and Lt. Eames in Hingham history]. Andrew is included in list of freemen published 23 May 1677, NEG&H Reg.  3:24.  He was a wheelwright, bought houselot from Jeremiah Beal(e?), Sr. and Sarah, his wife in 1674 (the Beals were parents of his brother John’s wife); was a soldier in Philip’s War. 
   Andrew Lane and wife Elizabeth, of Hingham, testified, Feb. 10, 1708-09, respecting
   Mahitable Warren, of Plymouth, that they never heard nor had thought that Euea she
   was guilty of the sin of being a witch notwithstanding her many distempers of body. 
He died 4 Dec. 1717, and his widow d. 12 Nov., 1727, ae. 83 years.  Three children: John, Elizabeth, Andrew (this 3rd Andrew b. 2/8/1677/78, d. about 1749, was an Attorney at Law in Boston; chosen constable March 13, 1726/27, according to Samuel Sewell’s records).

4.  John, b. 1/30/1647/48.  m. 1st, 1/21/1679/80 Sarah Beale, dau. of Lt. Jeremiah and Sarah Beale who d. 12/13/1693; and 2nd, on 4/16/1701 Bethia Lincoln, dau. of Stephen and Elizabeth Lincoln, who d. 3/17/1716/17.  He was a carpenter (emphatically designated to distinguish him from his cousin John Lane, the shoemaker).  He d. 3/12/1729/30.  Five children by  wife Sarah: Sarah, Hannah, Rachel, Susanna, Infant.  Three children by 2nd wife Bethia: Bethia, Mary, Lydia. 

5.  Ephraim, b. 2/1649/50. m. 1st, late in life on 2/20/1700/01 Susanna Huit (or Huet) dau. of Ephram and Elizabeth (Foster) Huit, who d. 5/15/1708;  and 2nd, on 12/29/1709 Elizabeth Beal, youngest sister of his brother John’s wife.  She d. 7/30/1716.  He was a wheelwright, soldier in active service under Capt. Joshua Hobart in Philip’s War 1675, and was also on the roll of Capt. Isaac Johnson’s Roxbury Co., which enlisted for the Narraganset campaign of July, 1675.  Was constable of Hingham in 1696. He died 12/1/1715.   Child with 1st wife: Ephraim (b. 7/1703; weaver and husbandman).  Child with 2nd wife: Jeremiah (b. 6/1710).

6.  Deborah, bap. 6/20/1652 m. 12/30/1674 (by Capt. Joshua Hobart) William Sprague res. Hingham and Providence, R.I. His brother Anthony was ancestor of the poet Charles Sprague.  She died 1706/07, 8 children: William, Deborah, Joanna, David, Jonathan, Abiah, John, Benjamin.

7.  Joshua, bap. 8/20/1654. m. (date unknown) Elizabeth _____.  Was living in Boston in 1696.  

Was a cordwainer (??) in Boston; earlier served with Captain Turner in 1676 on the Connecticut
river, later Falmouth.  He also enlisted under Capt. Samuel Wadsworth of Dorchester, Mass., was in the Sudbury Fight, where Capt. Wadsworth was slain by the Indians 4/21/1676.  He died 11/27/1710 ae. about 57 years (his wife survived him).  Children: child, Elizabeth, John (cordwainer in Hingham), Sarah.

8.  Caleb, bap. 7/17/1657.  Probably unmarried.  Is not listed among the sons and sons-in-law in the inventory agreement regarding his father’s estate (below), so may have died before 1675.

9.  Hannah, bap. 9/30/1658 m. 5/22/1677 (by Capt. Joshua Hobart) Jeremiah Beal, Jr. who was a blacksmith, sexton, Hingham selectman 1690, 92, 96; he d. 1703 aged 48 years; she d. 1719, aged 61 years.  11 children: Jeremiah, Sarah, Hannah, Jael, Andrew, Jedediah, Abraham, Bathsheba, Rebecca, Benjamin, Abigail.

At the time of the 1675 inventory of their father Andrew Lane’s estate, the following document was also recorded:

The sones & daughters and sons in law of Andrew Lane doe agree and fully consent that their mother Triphenie Lane shall have all the estate left by their abousaid father to improve for her
sufficient maintenance as longe as shee the abousaid mother lives a widow, as witness our hands thereunto.
Andrew Lane
the mark of C  Ephraim Lane
the mark of X William Orcutt
Daniel Stodder
William Sprague
John Lane
Jeremiah Beal.

[In the NEG&H Reg. 42:149,150: Ebenezer Lane and brother Andrew Lane founded Lane Theological Seminary, Cincinnati, date unknown at this 8/2001 writing.]


Family of William Orcutt and Mary Martha Lane

[Sources: Frederic Scott Orcutt, Sr., Descendants of Thomas Orcutt, 1677 to 1977 plus this writer’s visit 3/2000 to the First Unitarian Church, Norwell, MA, and others as indicated.  Significant information comes from Edson family researchers as referred to on p. 1, descendants of that family with which Orcutts were connected in both England and Massachusetts, including several marriages.]

The baptisms of ten of the twelve children of William Orcutt and Mary Martha Lane are recorded in the records of Second Church, Scituate (now First Unitarian Church, Norwell, MA).  All ten were baptised by the first minister of Second Church, William Witherell, whose ministry extended from 1642 until his death in 1684.  The Rev. Mr. Witherell baptised no less than 608 children (the occasion for the split from First Church Scituate and its minister the Rev. Chauncey was largely over the issue of the method of baptism: The Rev. Mr. Witherell favored sprinkling.)  The early records are apparently written by him (until 1674, when his assistant and successor Thomas Mighill began keeping the records).  Hence, Witherell spelled the surname Orcott the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th children.  Mighill spelled the surname Orcut for children 6-11 (see below).

William [2] was apparently not baptized by him, and may have been born elsewhere; some researchers say William Jr. born 1664 in Weymouth, Mass.

2.  Andrew Orcott, bap. 3/24/1666/67.
3.  John Orcott, bap. 4/18/1669.
4.  Martha Orcott, bap. 4/23/1671.
5.  Joseph Orcott, bap. 12/9/1672. 
6.  Mary &
7.  Hannah Orcut, twins bap. 4/11/1675.
8.  Thomas Orcut, bap. 10/2/1677 (page worn, could have another number in Oct. date).
9.  Benjemin Orcut, bap. 3/7/1679/80.
10. Elizabeth Orcut, bap. 7/16/1682
11. Deborah Orcut, bap. 10/7/1683.  

By 1685 William and his wife and family of 9 living children (Elizabeth and Deborah, born 1682 and 1683 and baptized in Scituate had apparently died in infancy) were living in Bridgewater, MA, where:

12th child Susannah Orcutt (note spelling, a third version among the 12 children) was baptised in 1685. [By the Rev. James Keith?  No record of this birth has yet been located.]

William Orcutt is recorded as a purchaser of land on the west side of Bridgewater in a listing dated 24 December, 1683.  He owned one share of the 56 proprietor shares (according to Helen Judson, p. vi, There has never been found to date (1966) that William (1) Orcutt owned any land anywhere in the Colony before he bought in 1670 of  Edward Gray of New Plymouth for 30 lbs:  He sells to William Orcutt of Marshfield, Massachusetts one share of upland and meadow in Bridgewater, Massachusetts. It is generally agreed that William Orcutt and his family did not take possession of and settle on his homestead for 13-15 years after the purchase of this land.) Further woodland was added to his holding in 1686.  He died in Bridgewater 14 September, 1693, age 74.  There is no presently known gravestone for either William or his wife.  According to Frederic S. Orcutt, Sr., burial could have been on their own property, and headstones long since disappeared.   However, in the listing regarding son Andrew made by George Walter Chamberlain in Genealogies of the Early Families of Weymouth, Massachusetts (1923), p. 447, t

there is the following sentence: Widow Orcutt, probably the widow of William, died at Weymouth, 30 Apr. 1712.  This is information FSO apparently did not have.  [The Old Graveyard on South Street in West Bridgewater came into use sometime after a grant in 1683.  It appears that Samuel and Susannah Edson were possibly the first or among the first persons buried there, he in 1692, she in 1699, followed by Susannah Edson Keith 1705, Rev. James Keith 1719.  Noting that Samuel Edson died 1692, just one year before William Orcutt died, it should be mentioned that the above-ground tomb also includes wife Susannah’s grave with his, and she died in 1699.  Next to it is that of the Rev. James Keith who died in 1719.  Further note:  9/13/00, visiting the Old Bridgewater Historical Society on Howard Street in West Bridgewater, JOH noted cement marker catty-corner across street on Marlene Howells property, commemorating the likely site of the first burial ground in Old Bridgewater.  No gravestones remain currently.  Perhaps this could have been the site where William Orcutt 1 was buried?  His son, William 2, was buried in the Bridgewater cemetery, as was William 2's wife Hannah -- presumably 3rd wife Hannah Newton.]

In that same western section of Bridgewater lived Deacon Samuel Edson and his wife Susannah Orcutt Edson.   Edson family history states that Susannah was born in Fillongley in 1618, married Samuel Edson in 1638, and the two emigrated to the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1638, settling first in Salem, then moving to Bridgewater (settled first by Miles Standish and others) in 1651 when Samuel is added to the list of Bridgewater’s original proprietors.  As mentioned earlier, both Edson and Orcutt family traditions state that Susannah and William Orcutt were sister and brother, born in February and December of the same year, 1618, in Fillongley. No birth or baptismal record has been found for Susannah Orcutt in 1618, but Helen Judson reports receiving a letter August 4, 1965 from the Diocesan Archivist of Warwickshire, England that states:
There was a William, son of William Orchar (the name Orchar being a modification of the name Urchard and probably Anglicized to the name Orcutt later) baptized December 18, 1618 recorded in the parish register (1538-1653) of Fillongley, Warwickshire, England.

Ms. Judson goes on to say that the register is not indexed and the brief glance at this time did not reveal other children of this William Orchar. [Note: This author possesses a photocopy of the register item, with date of December 6, 1618.  The discrepancy between December 18 and December 6 has not been explained as of this date.  A simply miscopying repeating the last two digits of the year?  See copy of this record following p. 19, Exhibit A.]

Edson Family History and Genealogy, editor Carroll Edson, vol. I, pp. 23-41 gives background information about Samuel Edson and his forbears.  On page 34 of that work, Carroll Edson quotes at length from The Rev. Theodore Edson, an Episcopalian clergyman, including the following depiction of Susannah Orcutt Edson in his A Genealogical Account of the Edsons, Early Settled in Bridgewater, With Appendices published in 1864 and co-written with Elijah Hayward, another Edson descendent:: 


  Susannah, his (Samuel Edson’s) wife, was one fully worthy of him and the age in which they lived.  Her education and natural abilities were said to be fully equal to his, while in union
with an expressive modesty of deportment and unaffected piety gave to her person an elevated
position and to her character a high rank among the matrons of the town.  She exhibited a majestic figure, rather above the medium height, and elegant and majestic mien, with a countenance happily combining graceful dignity with cheerful benignity.  Her daughters were of elegant forms, and with all their domestic and retired habits were of easy and pleasing manners.  As the affectionate companion of her husband, she was his prudent and discreet counsellor, and as a true mother, she religiously taught her children the way they should go, and when they were old they did not depart from it; and her descendants through succeeding generations point to the example of this, their maternal ancestor, with sentiments of respect, esteem and reverence.  Such parents as these do not live to themselves nor die to themselves, and their memories will be cherished while virtue and charity shall be practiced, as a valuable example to mankind.

Carroll Edson points out that in gathering his information, the Rev. Edson likely spoke with individuals who could have known and talked with the grandchildren of Deacon Samuel and Susannah Edson.

This author (JOH) located a handwritten document (on brown paper with string binding) by Judge Elijah Hayward, dated 1853 and titled Account of the Edson Family in the Old Bridgewater Historical Society collection (Edson genealogy packet), with the following description almost verbatim to that above (this is the same source stating Susanna Edson is supposed to be a sister of William Orcutt):

The wife of his [Samuel Edson] bosom and virtuous partner of his life was worthy of him and of the age in which they lived.  Her natural ability and literary education were said to have been full equal to his, which, in union with an expressive modesty of deportment and unaffected piety, gave to her person an elevated character and high rank among the females and matrons of the town.  She exhibited a majestic figure rather above the medium height an elegant and stately mein and a benign and dignified countenance.

She succeeded in so training her daughters that they copied most of her virtues. 

As the affectionate companion of her husband she was even his prudent counsellor and as the mother of their offspring she religiously taught them early the way in which they should go, and it may be truly said that when they were old they did not depart from it.  And her descendants through succeeding generations, point to the example of this maternal ancestor, with sentiments of respect, esteem and reverence.  Such parents as Deac. Samuel Edson & his wife do not live to themselves nor die to themselves.  Their memory will be cherished while virtue and Christian charity shall be practised, as a most worthy example to mankind....

[Hayward goes on to speak of Capt. Edson, his forebear, and refers to a book this great grandfather wrote, reflecting his own sources of information.]

 I also often heard my grandmother Hayward, mention her father’s book as she called it, lament its loss, and relate to me of its contents.  On the death of Capt. Edson I have been informed, all his papers came into the hands of his son Col. Josiah Edson, and but a very small portion of them
have since been seen.  It was a matter of regret to those who spoke of it that this manuscript work could not be found.........Rev. Peres [spelling unclear] Fobes was 20[,] my father 19 years old and my grandmother 49 when Capt. Edson died 1762.  Mr. Fobes d. in 1812 a 70 my father in 1815 a. 74.  And my grandmother in 1800 a 87.  I was born in 1786 [the 6 is not entirely clear, thus a guess].  It was from my recollections of their conversation in relation to that work, and from information of a similar import received of aged inhabitants fifty years ago, that I am indebter for the characters I have described of some of the first generations of those who made early and permanent settlements in the town.......signed June 2 [not exactly clear] 1853 Elijah Hayward

The reference to Susannah’s education and natural abilities being fully equal to those of Samuel Edson is of particular note, since her brother William made his mark instead of signing his name, which has been taken to indicate he may have been illiterate.  (Similarly, his son William 2 made a mark for his name as a witness for two different wills as well as to the agreement of settlement for his father’s estate; however, Andrew and John both signed their names to that document, although Joseph made his mark; and Thomas signed his name on a later document on which his wife Jane made her mark.)  Education for their children was a very high priority among Highland Scots families, so perhaps there is another reason the 2 William Orcutt men and Joseph Orcutt made marks for their names? [One Internet Orcutt correspondent says that, when told of Wm. Orcutt 1s possible illiteracy, her father snorted and said: The man couldn’t see!]

Deacon Samuel established the first sawmill and grist mill in Bridgewater.  The stones for the gristmill and its site with millrace are visible today in the lovely Town Park of West Bridgewater,
with a plaque commemorating Samuel Edson’s contribution to the Bridgewater community’s self-sufficiency.  For that contribution he was granted an extra land plot.
Deacon Samuel and Susannah Orcutt Edson’s daughter Susannah married the first minister in Bridgewater, the Rev. James Keith, b. 1644 [class of 1657 of Marischal College, located adjacent to Kings College in Aberdeen, as ascertained from Keith family genealogists; the Keiths were hereditary Marischals of Scotland] who emigrated from his home in Aberdeen, Scotland, arriving in Boston in 1662 and coming to Bridgewater in 1664 at the age of 18 under the recommendation of Increase Mather.  Keith had a long ministry in Bridgewater and was much beloved until his death in 1719.  Some Keith researchers claim he and Deacon Samuel were partners in the mill.  Deacon Samuel was also choir director for the church.  (The W. Bridgewater museum displays both a communion set Deacon Samuel donated to the church, as well as his pitchpipe.  He was known to have thrown that pitchpipe at choir members who persisted in being off-key!)





The Rev. James Keith is a key figure providing circumstantial evidence relating immigrant William Orcutt’s family to the Urquharts of Scotland.  In his handwritten record of having performed the marriage of William’s son William to his 2nd wife Hannah Smith September 21, 1698, he spells the groom’s surname as Urxohart, [transcribed records spell this Urrohart; see photocopy of the record following p. 19, Exhibit B] a known variant of Urquhart.  There is current (1999-2001) dispute over whether immigrant William Orcutt is of the Scottish Urquhart clan line (active on Internet genealogical Orcutt family boards, initiated by a Joel Thomas Orcutt -- descendent of Joseph 2 Orcutt and living in Oklahoma -- who has spent a number of years working on genealogy.  JTO claims to have found documentation in Warwickshire that Samuel Edson married Susannah Bickley, not Orcutt, and that Susannah Bickley may have been aunt to William Aucotte in Warwickshire, whom he identifies as William Orcutt).  It is of key significance to this dispute that the Rev. Keith was himself married to Susannah Edson, daughter of Deacon Samuel and Susannah Orcutt Edson, hence an in-law relative to Wm. Orcutt Jr., as well as a member of the Keith family of Aberdeen, Scotland who were linked to the Forbes family which in turn was  linked by shared ancestry to the Urquhart family.  In the small community of Bridgewater in the late 1600s (probably less than 60 families settled there), the Keith, Edson and Orcutt families were interrelated.  The Rev. Keith and all his family were highly educated, according to Keith family researcher, Charles F. Eaton, who confirms that Keith was probably very deliberate in spelling that marriage record; no likelihood of any mistake. 

This writer (JOH) believes that the Rev. Keith wrote the name as he did in a deliberate effort to publicly link the family to the Urquharts, since neither immigrant William nor his son William appear to have been literate; both having signed documents of record with their mark instead of spelling their name.  That the educated and respected minister in the community with his own multiple family connections with Orcutts/Urquharts chose to spell the surname as he did in their behalf is of real significance, something JTO has not been able to dispute (other than to cite the name of William Orcutt 2 spelled as Aucott in a deed for his wife’s family land in Taunton from his Smith brother-in-law, but researchers have viewed this particular deed as a misspelling of Orcutt for over a century).  Family historians of William 2s line from 2nd wife Hannah Smith, as well as George L. and Elizabeth O. Davenport’s The Genealogies of the Families of Cohasset, Mass., p. 321, have no doubts that Urrohart meant Orcutt.

What JTO does claim is that according to [unnamed] Edson researchers, it has been proven that Susannah Orcutt was not Orcutt but Bickley, aunt to William Awcotte/Orcutt, not sister.  This author has been unable as of August 2001 to locate which Edson researchers relate the Bickley connection.  The only clue to connect with a name spelled like Awcotte is a statement in Jarvis Bonesteel Edson’s Edsons in England and America and Genealogy of the Edsons, 1903, pp. 89-90 as follows:

Samuel Edson, furthermore, saw that his determination to become a colonist of Massachusetts Bay would permit his immediate marriage to Susanna Orcutt, with whom he had plighted troth

before he had given any thought to his going to New England.  The Orcutt family, as the Edson, had long been seated in Warwickshire.  The surname appears to be an etymological modification of the French compound, Orcote, which in England became corrupted into Alcott, Orcutt, Aucott, and Howcote.  Although many descendants of this long-known and highly respected family still
reside in several of the parishes adjoining the parish of Fillongley, no trace of Susanna Orcutt’s parents seems now to exist.  The church register in which their baptism and marriage may have been entered is in all probability no longer extant.

This reference makes no comment regarding a Susannah Bickley, so that must be a recent
discovery.  Jarvis Bonesteel Edson here is certainly simply speculating about the origins of the Orcutt name (appears to be), rather than showing knowledge of the Orcutt name’s history.

Because of this controversy, it may be worth noting here that the introductory portion of the document hand-written by Judge Elijah Hayward in 1853 and found in the Old Bridgewater Historical Society collection states the following:

Deacon Samuel Edson was born in England 1612 came over early to Massachusetts; resided in Salem 1639 Married Susanna Orcutt about 1649 (supposed to have been a sister of William Orcutt who came from Scituate & settled in Bridgewater before 1682) removed to Bridgewater about 1651 and died July 9th 1692 aged 80 his will dated Jan. 15, 1688/0.  His wife was born in England 1618 and d. Feb. 20 1699 a. 81.

Given the Edson family sources Judge Hayward cites, which are within a couple of generations of Samuel and Susannah Orcutt Edson, one wonders whether 20th century revisionist genealogists have not undertaken a narrow written paper document proof tack.  Certainly JTO and others do not effectively counter the multiple early and varied documentations and strong clues of Edson/Orcutt/Urquhart connections.  Nor do they utilize the approach of exploring the community history and traditions of the generations in question -- including families with whom Orcutts intermarried.  The history is not so long ago as to qualify as pre-history, hence many clues can be found, and good judgment in assessing them all for probability is a worthy route.

In her genealogy following the line of John 2, Helen Judson states: in the absence of definite proof so far it may not be unreasonable to assume that the scion of the Urchards, Urquharts, Orquarts and those that had Anglicized the name to Orcutt was Sir (sic) Thomas Urquhart who died in 1557, for it was some of his sons that settled in England.  Early Orcutt Historians record that it was well understood among the descendants that their Orcutt Ancestors were of Scotch origin.  In fact, old Father William 1, and his sons and grandchildren, had such a Scottish burr in their speech that the clerks, registrars, and army officers had difficulty in spelling the name correctly for the records.... No record has been found of her [Susannah’s] parents under the name of Orcutt in Warwickshire, England.  It is possible that her parents didn’t Anglicize their name from Orchar, Urchard, Urquhart, or Orquart during their lifetime, but that their children changed the spelling when they took up their new life in America.  Records found in America give her birth as 1618, in Filloughley (sic), Warwickshire, England, a small village located about 10 miles

from the river Avon. [Helen Judson also cites Javis Bonesteel Edson’s work, thus is familiar with his speculation regarding the origin of the Orcutt name quoted above.]

Worth mentioning in this connection is the pronunciation of the name Urquhart in those days.  As best as can be ascertained -- and written -- a Scots pronunciation (depending on where the pronouncer originated in Scotland!) is AHR-kart with the accent on the first syllable.  Note how much closer to Orcutt (ORE-cut) that sounds, compared to our tendency today to pronounce Urquhart URK-heart.  If the two William Orcutts were illiterate and only
pronounced the name, the spelling change seems to follow readily.

It may be worth mentioning too that there was soon such a significant Scottish settlement in Bridgewater, Mass. that a section of the town was designated Scotland.  A church (not that of
the Rev. James Keith) was named the Scotland Church, and a portion of the cemetery was designated Scotland.  However, it may not be appropriate to cite the Scottish community in Bridgewater as a factor that may have attracted William 1 there, since it appears to have developed after his death, and there seems no causal connection with the Rev. James Keith (though this may bear further exploration and a visit to that church with a records check; the
coincidence is a little striking, given the small population of the area).  Interestingly also, only one of William 1s six sons with his descendants remained in Bridgewater, William 2 (however grandchildren of John and Joseph, possibly others, did return/marry Bridgewater men/women).   But William 2 was active in a church (not the Scotland church), a member of at least three committees established in 1730 to investigate charges against a minister.

Some of the topics JTO mentions concern this writer, too:  that William 1 is age 46 when he marries 24-year-old Mary Martha Lane (JTO thinks she is 18, following that mistaken baptismal year taken as birthyear also); a bit old even for those days of somewhat later marriage, especially for men, though certainly not unheard of.  Another possibility is that he was married earlier, even in England, and possibly emigrated when his first wife died.  Were there prior children?  But men typically didn’t marry until they had land, a homestead to provide.  Maybe he just didn’t get that, not even until Bridgewater.  And he IS a kind of Strom Thurmond, fathering his 12th child at age 67! (Mary Martha was 45 then.) 

2nd, there is puzzlement about not being able to write his name, since Scots families, especially Highlanders, have long been so strong for education for their children and was an Urquhart tradition.  Was it difficult for Thomas Urquhart of Cromarty to educate all 25 sons who reached maturity?  Possibly this was a Fillongley issue?  Yet it would seem likely that as an Urquhart he would have remedied it; Samuel and Susannah Orcutt Edson seem to have done just that. 

3rd, what in the world was he doing between 1664 and 1683?  Was he a seaman?  But where did that large family live?  With Lane relatives?  But they weren’t in the neighborhood of the 2nd Church, Scituate.  Records aren’t complete, certainly, but they are remarkably good for that era, and there is nothing at all to show land possession until Bridgewater.  This gives more credence to Helen Judson’s belief that he was a seaman; perhaps the family went with him aboard ship

(but so many?!).  There are certainly Urquhart seamen and ship builders, starting in Scotland, and coming to the New World.

A poignant supposition is to note that it is soon after two daughters died, Elizabeth baptized July 16, 1682 and Deborah baptized October 7, 1683 (both appearing to have died in their infancy), that immigrant William Orcutt moves his family to Bridgewater.  Could that situation of the death of two daughters in a row, possibly in two succeeding years, have been related in some way to the father’s career as a seaman, then the desire to change it?   The last daughter, Susannah, is
born in Bridgewater in 1685.  William Orcutt, if born in 1618, was 67 when Susannah was born in Bridgewater, and wife Mary Martha was 45.

Immigrant William Orcutt died in Bridgewater September 14, 1693.  The inventory of his estate,
translated as best as possible from the handwritten and fragmented 1693 document and retaining as much as is discernable about the spelling, capitalization, is as follows:

An Inventory of the Effects of William orkat of ye towne of bridgewater in ye County of plimouth in new englend December ye fourteenth of September one thousand six hundred (rest is missing) ___ and ___ which is as followeth

(difficult to read: Imprimis To monoa?  Money?) -- 4-3-0

to ___sing cloaths linin woollon and leather(?) 3-5-0
to beddes and furniture ______ 8-0-0
to __ __ pots and ___ 2-5-0
to ___ ___ ___ 2-5-0
to guns and a sword 1-15-0
to ___ ___ and other iron ware 1-16-0
to hoops __ ___ ___ and other lumber 1-5-0
to yarn __ __ and __ __ __ 3-16-0
to __ (lamp?)  and ___ 1-15-0
to ___ __ __ and __ __ 13-0-0
to ___, sheep (?) 1 mare bridle and saddle 22-0-0
to __ dwelling hous, barne and seventy (?) acors 40-0-0
of land joyning heirunto part being improved
to fifti acors of dormund land 2-10-0
to twenty acors more of land 2-0-0
to fifteen acors more 2-0-0
to 2 lots of maddow 2-0-0
to a whole share in ye __ swamp 1-0-0
to swine and tobacko 3-5-0
to things unseen and forgoton 1-10-0

The summ totall if no mistake in casting up is 119 pounds and eleven shillings.

This above Inventory was taken by us according to our best understanding this eleventh of october one thousand six hundred ninety and three as witnessed our hands.

John ____ (Arnold?)
John Leonard

(In another penmanship):
William Orcutt, eldest son of the above named William Orcut (deceased?) (made?) oath before
William Bradford __ ___ (something judge?) of probate __ ye16th day of December 1693 that ye above written is a true Inventory of goods chattels __ __ __ of __    so far as his ___ and that __ __ ___ to him __ will make it __ (known?).
___ Saml Sprague (?) registrar (?)

This above written Inventory is recorded in ye 186th (?) page of plimouth country Book of __ for wills (?) __ January ye 16th 1693/4 __ Saml Sprague registrar(?)

The next document is the agreement about the estate of William Orcutt 1:

This Agreement made Between the widow orcut wife of William Orcut who deceased in the year 1693: Inhabitant in the Town of Bridgewater in the County of New Plimouth in New England: and her children, her Sons and Daughters whose Names Are here in mentioned: About the ___ of the Estat of Sd William Orcutt De__ (Deceased?) is As followeth

Inprimis(?) The widow Martha Orcut is to have the houseing and lands adjoyning __ with the benefit & priviliges there of untill her Son Thomas Orcut Comes of Twenty one years of Age and After Sd Thomas Orcut Come of Age __ widow orcut is To have foure Acres of broken up improfed Land: & her fire wood provided for her & full and free liberty to live in Sd house and improv(__) own ___ __ as she has ocassion Dureing the Time of her widowhood. 

And to William Orcutt he is to have fifteen acres of Land being of __ and a five acre lot lying on the North Side of the Towne River and lying westward of a fifty acre lot of John Willis & a lot of ___ (next two lines illegible) William Orcut made over to him (illegible two lines) gift before his Decease.

And to (illegible: appears to be John Orcutt) ___ ___lying to the Northward of John __ house butting on the Easterly side of Sotuckot River: And this with what (land was?) made over to him by the deed of gift by his father William Orcut before his (decease?).

And to Andrew Orcut the land made over to him by Deed of Gift by his (father?) William Orcutt before his Decease: which land sd. Andrew has solde to brother John Orcutt above sd.

And to Joseph Orcut fifty acres of Land lying to the southwestward of ye __ pond the bounds of

which is ___ ___ in the ___ ___ book of Records: And A Third part of A lot of meadow lying __ of Bridgwater in A place known by the Name of the __ meadow and the other two thirds sd Joseph Orcut has bought of his brothers John and Andrew Orcutt.

And to Thomas Orcut half the lands ___ ___ ___ sd widow orcut Now lives: being thirty five acres more or less and halfe the house and barne when sd. Thomas Comes to be of the age of one and twenty years.

And Benjamin Orcutt [2nd t seems occasionally added in this document; interesting that people doing the writing/recording are aware of the two spellings] the other halfe of the Land Adjoyning to sd house Being about thirty five Adres more or less with the other halfe of the house and barne where the sd widow Orcut Now Lives when he comes of the age of one and twenty years or as his Guardian ___ ___ (does Cause?).

And To the Daughters of sd William Orcutt ___ As followeth Martha Orcut six pound
To Mary orcut six pound
To hanah orcut six pound
To Susanna orcut six pound which six pound is delivered in to her brother William orcuts hands to return the principle when sd Susanna Comes of Age or before if she stands in need of it.

This agreement made between the widow (blank space) orcut and her children Sons and Daughters whose Names are ___ above __ __ in Dividing of sd Estat of William__ __ __ Agreement wld(?) binde ourselves our hairs ___ __ __ to stand to: To which __ ___ __ __ __ __ and __ this thirtyth of october one thousand six hundred ninety four.
The widow Martha orcutt her   H mark (seal)
William Orcut his   0 mark (seal)
Andrew Orcut (seal)
John Orcut (seal)
Joseph Orcutt his @ mark (seal)
Martha Orcut her A mark (seal)
hanah orcut her ll mark (seal
Edward Mitchell (?) as __ __ [guardian?] to Thomas and Benjamin Orcutt (seal)
The mark H of Martha Orcut widdow in behalf of Susanna Orcutt (seal)

In the presence of (signatures below)
Ebenezer Allen
Samuel Allin sr. (?) -- (whose handwritten appears same for whole document)
Thomas Michell
Jacob Michell

(Next two lines illegible) William Orcut Andrew Orcut John Orcut Joseph Orcut Martha Orcut Mary Orcut Hannah Orcut.  Edward Mitchell Guardian of Thomas and Benjamin Orcut (illegible crossover) And the said Widdow in behalf of Susanna her daughter came off of them personally

before me the subscriber Judge of Probate __ on ye 24 day of November 1694 & acknowledged the within and above written to be their own free acts and final settlement of ye Estate of William Orcut late of Bridgwater ___.
William Bradford

The above and within written agreement is recorded in ye 215th (?) and 216th pages of plymouth County Book of Records for Wills __ __ Saml Sprague Register
December 5th, 1694.

Mary and/or Martha?

Notes regarding Mary Martha’s dual name: From Helen Judson, p. vii, The name Martha given as the widow of William Orcutt has given rise to the theory that Mary (Lane) Orcutt died early and that Martha Orcutt was his second wife.  This theory would seem to be without foundation for in the above-mentioned agreement she acknowledges all the children as those of her and William.  Also there has been found the Plymouth Probate Court record of the signing of
an agreement upon the death of Andrew Lane, father of Mary (Lane) Orcutt and father-in-law of William Orcutt, July 27, 1675, with all the sons and sons-in-law, acquitting to their mother, Tryphena Lane, for her life, the use of the Estate of Andrew Lane.  William Orcutt signed this agreement with his mark O for his wife, Mary (Lane) Orcutt. [JOH: see p. 6 of this document for the text of that agreement.]  This is sufficient proof that Mary (Lane) Orcutt was not deceased in 1675 and that according to records found eight of the children of William and Mary (Lane) Orcutt had already been born.  The reason that Mary (Lane) Orcutt used the name Martha later in life can only be assumed, but there is little doubt that Mary Lane Orcutt and Martha Orcutt are one and same person from the information gathered from the Probate Court records above stated.  Hence, she is continually referred to here as Mary Martha.

The said Widow Orcutt survived her husband for another 19 years.  There were still three minor children to complete raising when William died:  Thomas (16 when his father died), Benjamin 14) and Susanna (8).  How long then did she continue to live in Bridgewater?  Thomas became 21 in 1698; notably, he sold land and a small house near Joseph Alden’s house in 1700 (the year co-heir brother Benjamin became 21), according to Mitchell’s History of Bridgewater, p. 249.  His inheritance, thus his mother’s home?  She must have moved by then by her own choice, possibly with Susanna who was then 15, since the Estate Agreement specified she could continue to live in the house after Thomas came of age as she has occasion during the time of her widowhood.  Thomas was married and settled in Cohasset in 1703; Benjamin married about 1705 and may have moved to Weymouth (both probably owned property in their new locations prior to their marriage, as was then the custom).  The date for Susanna’s marriage to Benjamin Washburn has not yet been identified.

Since Mary Martha Lane Orcutt’s death seems to be recorded at Weymouth as 1712, she may have moved to live with either second son, Andrew (married Francis Ward in 1692, first child Andrew born 1693, daughter Mary born 1699; youngest daughter Remember born about 1706 in

Weymouth) or after an interval her youngest son Benjamin, who himself died in Weymouth in 1770 (Benjamin married Elizabeth Randall about 1705; twins Martha and Silence Orcutt were born in Weymouth in 1719 or 1720; both Andrew and Benjamin had daughters named possibly for their mother). 

A side comment is to note here that in Mary Martha’s later years, at least by her 1712 death, she wasn’t living near/with eldest son and co-executor William 2, the only son who remained in Bridgewater for the rest of his life (died there 1739).  There is some question among a few researchers that William 2 and Hannah Smith, married 1698, may have divorced (they had three daughters born between 1700 and 1702) and there is no record of Hannah’s death.  William 2 married 3rd Hannah Newton April 10, 1706 (did Mary Martha disapprove of that marriage?  That
marriage produced William’s only sons, David b. about 1708, Moses b. about 1713, and Caleb b. about 1715); some researchers believe William 2 was married only twice, probably confusing the two Hannahs.

But had there been a divorce -- something presumably unusual in those days -- there surely should be some sort of record; none appears.   It might have created some sort of scandal.  

However, William 2 was later a member of several sensitive and important small church committees years later, in July, October, and December of 1730, relating to investigations of the
minister Rev. Benjamin Allen which led to Allen’s dismissal.  So he was clearly in good church standing then, 24 years after his 3rd marriage to Hannah Newton.  Still -- Mary Martha didn’t go to live with either son William or her married daughters in Bridgewater.  Interesting.

Mary Martha’s Era

Mary Martha Lane Orcutt witnessed the impact of significant events in the history of western civilization.  She was firstborn of a family that immigrated from England only 15 years after the arrival in Plymouth of the Mayflower.  Growing up in the Hingham home of her father Andrew Lane who immigrated in 1635 from England to Massachusetts with his father, Mary Martha probably knew her grandfather William Lane, who died in 1654.  At age 24/25 came her marriage and probably odd and dangerous life with a -- to us -- mysterious seaman (perhaps) whose family according to tradition descended from the Scottish Urquhart Clan (perhaps).  Then she and the family joined the first generation of settlers in Bridgewater, Massachusetts, related by marriage to the prominent Edson family there.   Her widowhood came in the year of the Glencoe Massacre in Scotland and the aftermath of the Witch Hunt in Salem, Mass. (her younger brother and sister-in-law Andrew and Elizabeth Eames Lane had later publicly defended a woman charged with witchcraft).  The life of Mary Martha Lane Orcutt was definitely that of  a colonial pioneer.

The land of her birth was yet a colony of England (and Scotland wasn’t yet part of  the Great Britain realm -- but that came in 1707, five years before Mary Martha’s death), and during her

lifetime Charles I (from the Scottish Stuart family, born in Dumfermline, Fife, Scotland) was executed in 1649 when she was nine. Cromwell’s interregnum republic governed England next (1649-1658 -- a relative of her husband’s, Sir Thomas Urquhart, was imprisoned in the Tower of London following the royalist loss of the 1651 Battle of Worcester).  The monarchy was restored in 1660 with Charles II (to the sounds of the laughter of said Sir Thomas Urquhart, which
laughter was reputedly the cause of his expiration in the Netherlands where he had moved, presumably a stroke), just four years before she and William Orcutt married in 1664/5.

James VII/II reigned after his brother’s death from 1685 to 1688 as last of the Stuarts who originated in Scotland; in 1689 William (implicated for Scotland’s Glencoe Massacre) and Mary came to the English throne following the defeat/desertion of James.  After they died childless, the throne passed in 1702 to Queen Anne (William’s sister-in-law) during Mary Martha Lane
Orcutt’s later years; hers was the reign during which the Treaty of Union between England and Scotland came into effect on May 1, 1707. [And what did the Orcutts think about that?!]  

For that matter, what was it like, for Mary Martha Lane to be married to this son of Scotland who was considerably older than herself, herself of English descent?  Whatever the politics, it was clearly preferable for both the Lane family and for William Orcutt to take the risks of making a living in England’s colony in the New World than to do so in the Great Britain developing across the ocean. 

Perhaps more can be surmised about Mary Martha, her values and family traditions, than from the sparse information we have about William Orcutt himself.  Her Lane family came to the New World fully a generation before she married William Orcutt.  It is intriguing to imagine what may have been the circumstances of Mary Martha’s and William’s meeting in the Hingham area, as it is about many aspects of their life as a couple and a family.  High family standards of conduct, responsibility and values are very much a part of the family traditions of both the Lanes and the Orcutts, and went far to aid them in their difficult and demanding lives in the 1600s-early 1700s in Massachusetts.  Giving birth to twelve children (including twins, both of whom lived to adulthood) and raising ten of them to adulthood and families of their own; possibly caring for small children during lengthy and dangerous periods at sea with a seaman husband for as many as 20 years; frightened during King Phillip’s War in 1675 (the year of her father’s death) when Hingham and Scituate neighborhoods were terrified by Indians killing whites and burning their homes while their men marched to protect them; nearly a decade later moving many miles away from the vicinity of her family of birth -- her mother still living in Hingham until dying at age 95 in 1706 -- to the Bridgewater frontier settlement, furthest western settlement at that time in Massachusetts, herself yet grieving the quickly-succeeding infant deaths in 1682 and 1683 of two of her children -- such a record is a  tribute to the courage, energy, stamina, and sense of the high importance of family embodied by Mary Martha Lane Orcutt.   She could say, in the early 1700s: And I’m still here! 

(compiled by Judy Orcutt Holy)

Jane Emerson

The second Orcutt in New England was Thomas Orcutt, fifth son of immigrant William Orcutt, who was baptised in 2nd Church Scituate on October 2, 1677 (the edge of the record page is worn off, so the October date could have a 2nd digit).  At that time William Orcutt listed Marshfield as the family address, although there are no records of land ownership until the family moved to Bridgewater by 1685.  2nd Church Scituate is now (2001) 1st Church, Norwell, in its third location.  Thomas Orcutt married Jane Emerson on June 29, 1703 (History of the Town of Hingham, MA, The Genealogies, vol. II, by George Lincoln, p. 100).

Background to their marriage: More is known of Thomas’ family than of Jane’s parents.  As related in the prior chapter, his father William immigrated from England (supposedly; also, supposedly, a descendant of the Scots Urquhart family, from a line descending from Thomas Urquhart of Cromarty who had 25 sons and 11 daughters who reached maturity, before he died in 1557), and the first clear record of his presence in Massachusetts is his marriage to Mary Martha Lane, daughter of Andrew and Triphena Lane of Hingham, Mass., on January 24, 1663/64 (V.R. Hingham, Mass.; some records say they married in Weymouth).  Other than ten baptismal records in 2nd Church Scituate, there is no indication where the family resided from that date until somewhere between 1683 and 1685, when they moved to Bridgewater, Mass. where William Orcutt’s supposed older sister, Susanna Orcutt Edson, lived with her husband, Deacon Samuel Edson.  Helen G. Judson, who has researched Thomas’ older brother John’s line, believes William may have been a seaman and took his family with him.  The Hingham/Weymouth/ Marshfield/ Scituate area certainly included harbors and significant shipping activity.  The family moved to Bridgewater after the deaths of two of Thomas’ younger sisters, Elizabeth, baptized July 16, 1682, and Deborah, baptized October 7, 1683, who appear to have died young, possibly in infancy. 

Thomas Orcutt as an adult could sign his name (see document regarding sale of his wife Jane’s inherited property, Exhibit A appended), unlike his father William, and his older brothers, William 2 (born probably in 1665) and Joseph 2 (b. in 1672).   Interestingly, their intervening brothers Andrew, b. in 1666/67 and John, b. in 1669, could sign their names in 1694; see the Agreement for their father’s estate, p. 16 of the prior chapter).  This suggests Thomas may have been educated in his youth, probably under the instruction of the Rev. James Keith, first minister in Bridgewater who came there from Scotland in 1664 and died in 1719.   Thomas and his two surviving younger siblings, Benjamin and Susanna (b. 1685 in Bridgewater) were minors living with their mother, following the death of their father William Orcutt on September 14, 1693.   Thomas was almost 16 when his father died, Benjamin 14, and Susanna 8. 

According to the terms of the Estate Agreement (see prior chapter, pp. 14-16), Thomas and Benjamin alike were to inherit half of the house and barn and related 35 acres when they came of age (21).   Nahum Mitchell in his History of Bridgewater (p. 249)  records that Thomas Orcutt sold land and a small house near Joseph Alden’s house in 1700 (the year co-heir Benjamin became 21).  The next documented event in the life of Thomas Orcutt is his marriage in Hingham to Jane Emerson on June 29, 1703.
Given the custom of the time that young men married only after they had property of their own, it is likely that Thomas Orcutt removed to the Hingham area very soon after selling the Bridgewater property in 1700.   The birth of all six of Thomas’ and Jane’s children were recorded in Hingham, although family property in the second generation is listed as located in Cohasset.  Cohasset was the 2nd precinct of Hingham (the Orcutt family location is given frequently as Hingham 2nd pre.), which became separately incorporated in 1770.

Thomas’s older brother John (b. 1669, thus 8 years older than Thomas) also moved from Bridgewater to Hingham after his first wife Experience Pratt died in 1700.  John married there in 1702 his 2nd wife, Mary Beal, who descended from one of the earliest settlers in Hingham. The Genealogies of the Families of Cohasset, Massachusetts by George L. and Elizabeth O. Davenport, 1909, p. 322 states that John died in Cohasset in 1753, thus he remained in that area the rest of his life, having been married no less than five times!  He was a farmer, and Constable in 1712.  John was also one of the original members of the Hingham second parish formed in 1721, in 1909 1st parish, Cohasset.  In 1711 he was taxed for 28 acres of land, in 1749 for 44 1/2 acres; is described as living near John Jacob.  John’s likely dates for moving to Hingham -- 1700-1702 -- strongly suggest that Thomas may have moved there with him.   But there is nothing to indicate why Jane Emerson came to Hingham prior to her marriage there in 1703.  Possibly further research among her Emerson relatives may yield a clue.  

Interesting note further connecting descendants of the brothers John (2) and Thomas (2) Orcutt: there is a later marriage between their grandchildren in Cohasset.  Ebenezer Orcutt II (son of John’s son Ebenezer by Mary Beal) married Jane Pratt, daughter of Moses and Jane Orcutt (daughter of Thomas and Jane Orcutt) Pratt on December 9, 1753 in Cohasset.

Jane Emerson, 2nd daughter of Joseph and Mary ____ Emerson (one researcher calls her Mary Emery, but no corroborating information for that has yet been found), was born in 1679 (Frederic Scott Orcutt, Sr., Genealogy of Thomas Orcutt, p. 39; FSO states Jane is “of Concord, Mass.” but gives no source for that information).  Concord is where her grandfather Joseph Emerson died in 1680, having moved there in 1675; but her father Joseph was taxed in Boston in 1674 as a “sojourner” -- i.e. not a regular resident, possibly a student -- 5 years before Jane’s birth, and 3 years before the birth of her sister Mary on July 13, 1677 as listed in Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages & Deaths, p. 141.  It is possible that Jane likewise was born in Boston. 

Two children made for a small family in those days, (did their mother die early?), and both were girls, a circumstance providing the background for later inheritance of their paternal grandfather’s land (see below).  

How did Jane Emerson and Thomas Orcutt meet, since there is no indication their families lived anywhere near each other before their marriage?   One intriguing note for speculation is that Jane’s sister Mary, who married Robert Noakes in Boston August 17, 1699 (by Mr. Samuel Willard, as listed in Boston Births, Baptisms, Marriages and Deaths, p. 251), is described as a widow living in Hingham in 1708 at the time of the sale of her inheritance (Benjamin Kendall Emerson, The Ipswich Emersons, 1900, p. 41).  Activities of Robert Noakes are frequently listed in Boston records until 1695; it appears thus far (2001) that he never resided in Hingham himself.   This suggests that Mary Emerson Noakes may have come to Hingham to live with or near her sister (quite possibly her only surviving close relative?) following her husband’s death which  must have occurred no earlier than 1703, since their second daughter Mary was born April 28, 1703.  The first daughter, also named Mary, b. 3 June 1700, must have died in infancy (birthdates found in B.K. Emerson, p. 69, who assumes the Noakes lived in Boston).  So it seems unlikely that Jane came to Hingham because her sister lived there; rather, the converse seems to be the case.  Hence, the mystery of how Jane Emerson and Thomas Orcutt met and married and settled in Hingham, remains.   There can only be speculation, since there are at this time (2001) no indications of any prior connections between Emersons and Orcutts until the marriage of Jane and Thomas.  (There is an Emerson living in Bridgewater, though to this date, no indication of connection of that Emerson with Jane or her family.)

Whatever those circumstances may be, the impact of Jane Emerson on her family of descent is clearly evident in the use of Emerson as first name for their second son (interesting note:  not Joseph, after her father, as was more commonly done then;  although the pattern of using the mother’s maiden surname as a given name does come into occasional use thereafter; this is the first such instance in the Orcutt/Emerson families); and that strong tradition of a male Emerson Orcutt continued through many succeeding generations.  There are also many succeeding Janes.  Clearly, this Emerson ancestry is worth detailed investigation.

Ancestry of Jane Emerson

Jane’s parents Joseph Emerson and his wife Mary, are a striking enigma, since there is an unusual paucity of information about them.  This is the case particularly for Joseph in comparison to his mostly copiously-documented Emerson relatives, including all of his siblings and half-siblings.  Does this suggest he was a kind of black sheep in the family?  The surname of his wife Mary is persistently unknown (unless the researcher giving her name as Emery has documentation for that; Emery appears to be simply a version of Emerson), thus her background cannot be traced.  There is no marriage record, but it must have occurred sometime before 1677, the birth year of their first daughter Mary (There are gaps in the Boston marriage records between 1663 and 1679).   Joseph’s father moved to Concord in 1675, but Joseph himself was taxed in Boston in 1674 as stated above, indicating the possibility that he was a student then, perhaps at Harvard.  Since nothing further is known of him (his death, probably in Boston, had to have occurred before the 1706 inheritance documents were made, otherwise he would have been the heir), it may be that he studied for the ministry for a time, but dropped out.  He seems not to have owned land, does not appear on any other tax rolls.  There is a reference to a “Mrs. Emerson, 1714 .......” in Boston, could this be his wife Mary?   Perhaps he had poor health and died young?  Perhaps for some reason (rejecting the ministry, the church?) he was on the “outs” with his family?

There is a curious reference (NEH&G Reg., v. 6, p. 273), headed Andover, which states that the Rev. Sam’l Phillips - b. Salem - was prepared for college under Master Emerson, and graduated H.C. [Harvard College] 1708, age 18.   According to B.K. Emerson, a Samuel Phillips (at least 3rd generation of Phillipses named Samuel, father and grandfather both ministers) was born February 17, 1690 (correct year), was the son of Mary Emerson, daughter of Rev. John and Ruth Symonds Emerson, whose father was son of Rev. Joseph Emerson and brother to Joseph Emerson, father of our Jane.  This Rev. Samuel Phillips lived in Andover (descendants founded the Phillips academies at Andover, Mass. and Exeter, NH).  Is there a possibility that the “Master Emerson” who prepared Rev. Sam’l Phillips was Jane’s father?  The dates are suggestive.  (So is the fact that Joseph Emerson’s maternal grandfather, Robert Woodmansy, was a school teacher in Boston.)    

But the family origins of Joseph Emerson can be traced for multiple generations back to England (chief source: Benjamin Kendall Emerson’s “The Ipswich Emersons, A.D. 1636-1900", 1900).  His father was Rev. Joseph Emerson, eldest son of Thomas Emerson (baker) who immigrated to Ipswich, Massachusetts around 1638 from Bishops Stortford, county Hertfordshire, England.  Thomas’ father was Robert Emerson, “currier” of Bishop’s Stortford, whose father was Thomas Emmerson of Great Dunmow, county Essex, whose father may have been Rafe or Ralph Emerson of Foxton, County Durham.  The Emerson name in England is supposed to be derived from the son of Emery, a patronymic introduced into England by the Normans, and the name is Norse, not French.  The Emersons in England seem to have sprung from Aimeric, archdeacon of Carlisle and Durham, 1196-1214, and high sheriff of Northumberland, 1214-1215, also nephew of bishop Phillip of Poictou, Prince Bishop of Durham, 1195.  There is a long connection of the Emersons with the bishopric of Durham, especially as parkers, foresters and gatekeepers of the great park belonging to the bishopric, from which the Emerson-associated locations of Bondgate and Eastgate arose (B.K. Emerson, p. 13).  Landholdings around the Weardale in county Durham of north England, begin to be cited for Emersons from the 1400s.  It has been the uniform tradition that the Ipswich Emersons came from the Weardale, but there is no documentary evidence of this (Emerson, p. 15).  (Interesting note:  Emersons in that area were associated with the Nevilles, two of whom took up arms in behalf of Mary, Queen of Scots, to restore Roman Catholicism.)  This early sketch is considered interesting relative to the possibility that William Orcutt 1 stemmed from the Scottish Urquhart family, and emigration to northern England (Urquharts were in Carlisle area in the 1600s, according to the writings of Sir Thomas Urquhart).

According to B.K. Emerson, the family line has been traced as follows, beginning with the earliest Emerson ancestor:

I.  Ralph Emerson

Radus (Ralf, Raffe, or Rauff) Emerson was granted arms, in 1535, and described as of Foxton, county Durham.

II.  Thomas Emmerson of Great Dunmow

Born some time before 1540, his place of birth is unknown.  He was resident in Great Dunmow, county Essex, where his three children were registered.  He was probably son of Ralf, of Foxton.  His children were: 1.  Robert, baptized 25 Oct., 1561; 2. Joan, baptized 1562; and 3. John, baptized 1565.

III.  Robert Emerson of Bishop’s Stortford

Bishop’s Stortford, county Herts, is only seven miles from Great Dunmow, and 30 miles n.n.e. of London.  It derives its name from its location at a ford on the river Stort, the prefix having been bestowed by William the Conqueror upon the bishop of London and his successors in office.  The church, dedicated to St. Michael, was built in the reign of Henry VI; a free grammar school was founded and endowed in 1579; the ruins of the castle erected by William the Conqueror may still be seen. 

Robert Emerson of Bishop’s Stortford married there Susan Crabb on November 24, 1578; she was buried there November 20, 1626, age 70.  He was called in his will a “currier.”  (This could be a currier of leather, or a courier on the great post system, possibly derived from “ecurier,” a master of horse.  Robert was buried at Bishop’s Stortford January 6, 1620.  Their children, all baptised at Bishop’s Stortford,  were:
1.  Alice, bapt. Nov. 11, 1579; 2. Margaret, bapt. Feb. 21, 1581/2, m. T. Browne of Southwark;
3. Thomas, bapt. July 26, 1584, m. Elizabeth Brewster July 1, 1611 at Bishop’s Stortford; 4. Anne, m. J. Rogers, July 1, 1611 [JOH: note same date as Thos. and Ellis’s marriage]  at Bishop’s Stortford; 5. Robert, bapt. April 12, 1596, not mentioned in father’s will, died before 1620; 6.  John, nor recorded as bapt. at Bishop’s Stortford; living in 1620.

IV.  Thomas Emerson of Bishop’s Stortford and Ipswich

Little is known of Thomas’ life.  In the churchwardens’ book of St. Michael’s he is recorded in 1636, as collector for the poor.  Dr. Peter Henry Emerson in “The English Emersons” written in  1898, suggests that Thomas’ wife, Elizabeth Brewster (1584-1638), may have been the daughter of William Brewster, the postmaster at Scrooby, and the famous elder of the Pilgrims of 1620.  However, after investigation, this writer found no mention of this Elizabeth Brewster in Brewster records, list of children, or in Mayflower lineages.   Furthermore, it appears that William Brewster and Mary Wentworth married around 1585-86, soon after William left Cambridge, and the birthdate given for the Elizabeth Brewster who married Thomas Emerson is a year earlier.  William Brewster was in active service of Queen Elizabeth’s court, living in the vicinity of London (interesting note: Brewster assisted Sir William Davison, secretary to Queen Elizabeth, who was sent to the Tower in 1587 because of involvement in the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots that year.  Davison died in 1608, at which time William Brewster made plans to leave England as soon as possibly, going to Leydon in that year.).  Brewster had been in full possession of the Post and Scrooby Manor by April 1, 1594, continuing in that status for the next 13 years.  (Leon Clark Hills, “History and Genealogy of the Mayflower Planters,” 1936.)   One researcher considers that Elizabeth Brewster (who clearly did not accompany William and Mary Wentworth Brewster to Holland in 1608, since she married Thomas Emerson in 1611) may have been related to the Elder, 1567-1644, whose dates coincide closely enough to hers (1584-1638) to make it possible that she might be, if not his daughter, perhaps his niece [NOTE: that’s an angle to be explored:  if there is a relationship connection between Elizabeth who married Thomas Emerson, and William Brewster, WB’s connection with Queen Elizabeth’s secretary implicated with the execution of Mary Queen of Scots is an intriguing juxtaposition with Thomas Orcutt’s possible Scottish lineage.]  (Bill Turner, http://homepages.rootsweb.com/~wmturner/PS01/PSo1 279.HTML).

Major-General Denison, who is mentioned in Thomas Emerson’s will as his friend, also immigrated to Massachusetts from Bishop’s Stortford.  Deputy-Governor Symonds (his son John married Symonds’ daughter Ruth) had resided in the neighboring towns of Great Yeldham and Upsfield, county Essex.

The children of Thomas and Elizabeth Brewster Emerson, as recorded in the baptismal registry of St. Michael’s church, Bishop’s Stortford, were:

1.  Robert, bap. 24 May, 1612; 2. Benjamin, bap. 2 Oct., 1614, bur. 27 Oct. 1614; 3.  Ralfe, bap. 19 Oct. 1615; bur. 8 Jun., 1626 killed by falling from a tree, as recorded in the registry; 4. James, bap. 16 Feb. 1617; 5. Joseph, bap. 25 Jun., 1620; 6. Elizabeth, bap. 14 Jun., 1623 (m. John Fuller); 7.  John, bap. 26 Feb. 1625; 8. Thomas, bap ___; 9. Nathaniel, bap. 18 Jul., 1630; and 10. Susan,  bap. 17 Mar., 1632 (P.H. Emerson conjectures that she may have died on the voyage to New England).

Tradition says that Thomas Emerson and his family came from England, in the ship “Elizabeth Ann” in 1635.  He was at Ipswich as early as 1636, when he had 80 acres of land granted him.  A Thomas Emerson of Ipswich is called baker, although B.K. Emerson and other Emerson genealogists think this may have been an error, that Thomas Emerson could not have been a craftsman.  (Interesting quote from Dr. P.H. Emerson in this regard: “A curious mistake has arisen and been perpetuated by some of Ralph Waldo Emerson’s biographers, who have said Ralph Waldo Emerson was descended from a baker.  Oliver Wendell Holmes was the last to state this, and proved himself a careless historian by the fact.  A baker, one Jo. Emerson (John or Joseph or Joshua), a baker of London, is given in Hotton’s original lists of emigrants as going to America, in the Abigail in 1635, hence this confusion.  This baker was a person of mean birth, probably the son of John Emerson, a tailor of London, and is no way related to Thomas Emerson, Esq., formerly Lord of the Manors of Bradbury and Hilton, Sedgefield, unless he was an old servant, which is possible.”  Quoted in B.K. Emerson, p. 26.) 

Thomas Emerson made a will May 31, 1653 (died at Ipswich May 1, 1666) including the following stipulations:

“I Give and bequeath vnto me sonne Joseph the some eighty pound of current paye of new england viz forty pound of it which I reserued out of my farme Given vnto my sonne John to be payd unto the said Joseph my sonne acording to the couenant & agreement expressed in a papre of Indentors beareing date the sic and twentieth of the nineth month 1648 the other fforty pound to be payd vnto him by my sonne Nathaniell (our of my house & land giuen vnto him) within six monnths after the decease of me & my wife.
Item I giue & bequeath vnto Nathaniell Emerson my sonne my house wherein I now dwell with all my vpland & meddow and the marsh I bought of my sonne Joseph wch was somymes Mr Woodmansys with all the apternances a& privelidges thervnto belonging payeing forty pound out of it as aboue exprest alsoe a little p’sel of meddow lyeing within the marsh before mentioned after the decease of me & my wife.
“Item I giue vnto my sonne James Emerson the some of forty pounds out of my stock of cattell to be payd vnto him if he shall come over into this country (or send by a certayne surtifficate of his being liueing) within two yeares after the decease of me & my wife.  In case my sayd sonne dye before, then my will is that my sonne Joseph his sonne Joseph shall haue ten pound of it and my sonne Nathaiell ten pound & my daughter ffullar hir foure sonnes the other Twenty pound or any of them dye the surviuors to inioye the same.”  After other bequests and specifications, the will concludes: “And doe desire my much honored & faithfull frends Mr. Samuel Symonds and Maior Genl Daniell Dennison to be overseers to see yt this my will be fulfilled.”

There is no mention of Robert in this will, nor of his coming to America (some researchers confuse him with Robert Emerson of Haverhill, but this is unlikely -- of interest to descendants of Willard Merton Orcutt (8) and Lydia Emerson Woolever Orcutt is that Lydia’s ancestry goes back to Robert Emerson of Haverhill).  Only Joseph, Nathaniell, daughter Elizabeth Fuller, son James -- who appears not to have left England -- are mentioned.  John too is not mentioned, but there is a later memorandum concerning him dated Jan. 4, 1660 that Thomas has given “vnto my son John Emerson his portion Ful in ye Consideration of ye agreement betwixt vs about my farme he dully performing the Couenant of ye said indenters betwixt vs during the terme of my life & his mothers as also thos engag ments their in spesified afterwords according to our mutu all agreement according to the sixtenth lin of this wil” (This is signed, as was his will, in a beautiful penmanship: Thomas Emerson).  

There is also no mention of Thomas 2 in this will.  B.K. Emerson describes the following tradition regarding this son: “That Thomas Emerson (1) was possessed of substantial resources and of much superior scholarship to the average Englishman of his day in America; that he was from the vicinity of London, where he had been, through his active years, in mercantile life; that his son Thomas, jr., not being of robust constitution, did not apply himself to the duties of life, as did his brothers Joseph and John, but, in accord with the prevailing sentiment, did profess an employment, that of baker; that he died in 1653 [thus before his father], and his death occasioned the writing of his father’s will.”  (p. 22) Of the other children of Thomas and Elizabeth Brewster Emerson, Benjamin had died in the month of his birth; Ralfe died in 1626, and Susan is conjectured to have died on the voyage to New England.   Son James in England was identified by P.H. Emerson with a lieut. col. Emerson whose will was proved at Tangiers, 1664, leaving a wife Lydia, and a daughter Lydia who married J. Stubbings, citizen of London, 13 January, 1669-70.   (BKE, p. 22)
Another 1660 addendum to the will, relating to timing of distributions and amounts of moneys reduces the amount to be given to James Emerson from 40 to 5 pounds (should he come or send a “sertain sertifficat yt he is then Living.”

“Alsoe in refrans to ye eigtenth lin of this my will for six months ther exprest is thus to be vnderstood that my son Nathaniel shoul pay that forty pounds to my son Joseph the sume of ten pounds a year til it be fully dischardged vnles he ye said Nathaniel shall sell my hous & land I now dwel in, & the it is to be payd to my son Joseph presently.”    Thomas Emerson certainly took close interest in his bequests.  The inventory of his estate in 1666 (including “books and bibels”) was valued at 251 pounds, 3 shillings.

“Joseph (2) Emerson, son of Thomas and Elizabeth Emerson, was born in England about 1620-1, and died at Concord, Massachusetts Bay Colony, 3 January, 1680.  He married, 1646 (?), Elizabeth Woodmansey, daughter of Robert and Margaret Woodmansey, a schoolmaster of Boston.  They resided at Ipswich, Mass.; York, Maine; and Milton, Mass.  Mr. Emerson was a minister of the standing order of puritan clergymen.  Of his education nothing is known.  Tradition says he was educated in England.  He may have studied at Harvard.  He was at Ipswich as early as 1638, was admitted freeman there, 19 December, 1648.  He preached at York, Me., the same year.”  (BKE, p. 32.)

According to an Ipswich deed of 1652, Joseph Emerson (”with the consent of Elizabeth Emerson my wife”) sold to his father Thomas Emerson for 16 pounds 12 acres of meadow and upland (“at Labour in Vaine”) given to him by “my father in law Mr Robert Woodmansey in pt of portion with his daughter”.  The deed is signed by both Joseph Emerson with seal, and Elizabeth Emerson and a seal [Robert Woodmansy must have taught his daughter; unusual in that day that a woman could write her name], witnessed by John Emerson, and acknowledged by Samuel Symonds.

Pausing for an added note here regarding Robert Woodmansey from the Hammat Papers, Ipswich, p. 419: “Mr. Woodmansy was a commoner, 1641.  He sold a farm of 110 arcres, March 5, 1660, to Thomas Bishop, who sold the same to Daniel Rindge.  It was bounded by the Mile Brook, land of Matthew Whipple and Richard Jacob.  He removed from Ipswich to Boston.”

In 1653, Joseph (2) Emerson was a resident of Wells, Maine, and took the freeman’s oath 4 July, 1653; and was an inhabitant when the commissioners took the submission of the people, the court being held in his house.  He favored submission to Massachusetts in 1651-2, and was evidently a leading man of the Massachusetts party.  He signed a petition to Cromwell as of Wells, asking the protector to confirm the jurisdiction of Massachusetts over the inhabitants of Wells.  In this petition, which he probably wrote, the people of Wells refer Cromwell to their “pyous and reverend friend, Mr. John Wheelwright, sometime of us, now in England, for any desired information as to their condition or character.”  He soon lost his hold on the affections of the people of Wells; largely, perhaps, because of the political dissensions which disturbed the church. 

From the Records of Wells, Maine (BKE, p. 34):

“7, July 1663 Wee prsent Mr. Joseph Emerson for telling of a ly
        Witnesses, Capt. Raynes Richard Bankes.
We prsent Mr Jos. Emerson for telling of a Lye   Thomas Curtin, Hene Sayword
We prsent Mr. Jos. Emerson for speaking falseley.  Witnesses Ric. Whitte Frances White

13 July 1663.  Ordered that the presentments of such persons as have not answered theretoo be proceeded with .... Mr Emersons (with others) excepted.

The above witnesses were all York people -- the first two were strong opponents of Massachusetts rule; and the others were probably so -- the last two were man and wife, and quite worthless people. [!]

After Mr. Emerson left, the church is said to have dwindled to two families, and they quarrelled.  Orders came from the Massachusetts government that the church disband.  orders quickly followed that the town be indicted for not maintaining public worship. [!]

“About 1664, he left Wells and became the first minister of Milton; asking an increase of salary on account of his approaching marriage, he was dismissed.”

Rev. Mr. Emerson married 2d, 7 December, 1665, Elizabeth Bulkeley, daughter of Rev. Edward Bulkeley, of Concord, Mass., granddaughter of Rev. Peter Bulkeley, B.D., first minister of Concord.  She was born in 1638, and died 4 September, 1693, wife of Capt. John Brown, of Reading.  They resided at Milton and Mendon, Mass.  Children [of Joseph (2) Emerson]:

 Children of first wife, Elizabeth Woodmansey (m. 1646?):
1.  Joseph, b. before 1652 [this date seems to relate to mention of him in his grandfather Thomas
     Emerson’s will of 1653], m. Mary ___
2.  James, [b. probably after 1653 since he is unmentioned in his grandfather’s will of that date],
     m. Sarah Ingersoll

Children of second wife Elizabeth Bulkeley (m. 1665):
3.  Lucyan, b. 2 Oct. 1667, d. 1740; m. 15 May, 1683, Thomas Damon; res. Reading.
4.  Edward, b. 26 Apr. 1670; d. 9 May, 1743; me. 27 Jan. 1697, Rebecca Waldo; res. Chelsford, Newburyport and Boston. [These are the forebears of Ralph Waldo Emerson.]
5.  Peter, b. 1673; d. 1752; m. 1696 Anna Brown; res. Reading.
6.  Ebenezer, ___, d. 1751; m. 1st, Bethia Parker; 2nd Mary Boutwell; 3d, ___; 4th,___; res.
7.  Daniel,___; m. 19 May, 1709, Jane Armitage; res. Boston.

Joseph (2) Emerson settled in Mendon 1 December, 1669 [terms of his 1669 salary agreement there were refereed by his 2nd father-in-law, Mr. Bulkeley], where he remained until the town was destroyed by the Indians in King Phillip’s War[1675]; then he retired to Concord where he died [1680].  (BKE, pp. 32-35)

Joseph (2) Emerson’s house in Mendon was on the finest site in Mendon, states B.K. Emerson, an important point for what follows.

The number of the children of Joseph of Mendon and of Joseph of Boston, his son, depends upon the interpretation of the following four deeds.

Judge Alphonso Taft, of Cincinnati, says the Massachusetts provincial law divided an intestate estate equally among the male children, “except the eldest son then surviving, where there is no issue of the first born, or of any other elder son, who shall have two shares, or a double portion of the whole, and when there are no sons the daughters shall inherit as coparceners.”  Thomas and Jane Orcutt deed their share (one seventh) of the homestead of the senior Joseph Emerson of Mendon, which she inherited from her father, Mr. Joseph Emerson of Boston.  (This cannot be Joseph of Mendon, who did not live in Boston, and who would have been called the Reverend Joseph.  The deed is couched in the plural and where it says “our honored father” it refers to Thomas and Jane Orcutt, and to their father Joseph Jr., and where the property is described as “the Homestead which Mr. Joseph Emerson, clerk (that is, clerious, clergyman), dyed siezed of in Mendon,” the reference is to the Rev. Joseph of Mendon.)

Mary Nokes deeds her share inherited “from her honored grandfather, the Reverend Joseph Emerson.”  This proves that Joseph, Jr., died after his father, leaving two daughters, who inherited his two-sevenths.

The four sons deed their shares in the same way, and the homestead thus came into the possession of James, the fifth living son [and son, like Joseph (3), of Elizabeth Woodmansey].  (BKE, p. 36.)

Following are the texts of the deeds from Thomas and Jane Emerson Orcutt (see also as Exhibit A, attached), and Mary Emerson Noakes:

Suffolk Deeds xxiv : 176.  Boston, Mass.

  To all Christian People to whom these presents shall come, Thomas Orcut of Hingham in the county of Suffolk and Province of the Massachusetts Bay in New England and his wife, daughter unto Mr. Joseph Emerson late of Boston in New England, Send Greeting.  Know ye that we the said Thomas and Jane Orcutt [note extra ‘t’ here] divers good and valueable considerations us thereunto moving, but more especially for and in consideration of eight pounds as by us esteemed and valued to us in hand paid by Mr. James Emerson of Mendon in the same County and Province aforesd the receipt whereof we do acknowledge and thereof and of every part and parcel thereof we doe acquit exonerate and discharge the sd Mr. James Emerson his heirs exers and adminrs firmly by these presents for evr have given granted, bargained, sold, aliened, enfeoffed & confirmed, and by these presents doe give, grant bargain sel alien enfeoff and confirm unto him the sd Mr. James Emerson one seventh part of the Homestead which Mr. Joseph Emerson, clerk, dyed seized of in Mendon as it is undivided & lyeth in common with the other six remaining shares, the whole being butted and bounded Easterly with the Brook commonly called Division Brook wch divides sd lot from the lands in the hands of Joseph White Senr & Ebenezer Staple.  Westerly with the Homestead of the Ministry.  Northerly partly with the highway & partly with the lands of Mr. Grindal Rawson, and Southerly with lands of sd Rawson together with the seventh part of all the divisions of meadow, swamp or uplands belonging or of right, according to the manner of dividing lands in said Mendon, thereunto appertaining at present made or future according to its due proportion to be made with all wood and underwood thereon standing or lying with all stones minerals, brooks, water courses which may be therein or belong, and all rights, privileges apput’ces, profits or emoluments whatsoever from thence arising or unto sd seventh part in any manner due the sd seventh part, and all prementioned rights in its undivided capacity to him the said James Emerson his heirs and assigns.  To have and to hold by him & them and to his and their alone proper use benefit and behood as a sure an firm estate of inheritance in fee simple forever firmly by these presents to be holden without any restriction or limitation whatsoever that might tend to the nulling or making void the title of said demised premisses.  Moreover we the said Thomas & Jane Orcut do by these presents covenant and promise that we the sd Thomas & Jane Orcut are duly and legally invested in the foresd seventh part bargained and sold as aforesd, and have lawful power, strength & authority to make sale of the demised premisses according to manner and form above expressed, warranting said premises to be free & clear & to be freely acquitted and discharged of for and from all and all manner of former gifts grants, bargains, sales, enfeoffments alienations, dowrys thirds, power of thirds, leases, mortgages, dues, debts, bills, bonds, arrests, judgments executions & extents or any other act or acts had made or done or cause to be done by us the said Thomas & Jane Orcut or any person or persons acting by from or under us from the beginning of the world to this the time of their present alienation, firmly binding ourselves, our heirs, exers, and admrs firmly by these presents to warrant and defend the title & tenure of the demised premisses & all and singular the rights & appurces, thereof as above cautioned, to him the sd James Emerson his heirs & assigns from all manner of p’sons acting by from or under us or our heirs exers and administrators or acting by from or under our hon’red father Mr. Joseph Emerson or any other of his heirs of their heirs exers adminrs whereby the sd James Emersons or his heirs or assigns might be in the premisses either the whole or in part damnifyed forever.  Furthermore we the said Thomas & Jane Orcut do covenant & promise to do and perform all further act or acts in ye law necessary to be done or performed for the more sure making & ratifying the title & tenure of the premisses when this above instrumt or Deed of Sale we the sd Thomas and Jane Orcut have hereunto set & affixed our hands & seals this thirtyeth day of October in the year of our Lord MDCCVI and in the fifth year of the reign of our sovereign Lady Anne by the Grace of God of England, Scotland, France & Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith.
THOMAS ORCUT and a seal
JANE ORCUT X her mark & a seal

Signed, sealed and delivered by sd Thomas Orcut (the word heirs in the last line save 9 interlined before either) this thirtyeth day of October as above in the presence of us Grindal Rawson Ebenezer X White

Memorandum.  That on the thirteenth day of May annoq Dom. 1709, the within named Thomas Orcut & Jane his wife acknowledged the within written instrument to be their act and deed before me the subscriber one of her Majties Justices.

May the 14, 1709.  Received & accordingly entred and examd,


Suffolk (Mass.) Deeds, xlv : 37.

Mary Nokes, of Hingham, widow, to Josiah Thayer of Mendon, dated 14 September 1708.  Description.  All that her seventh Part of a lot of Land lying in Mendon, called the forty acre lot, which did formerly belong to her honored Grandfather the Reverend Joseph Emerson, late of said Mendon, deceased, who died Seized thereof.  Consideration -- 13 pounds 10.  (BKE, pp. 39-41)

Would that Thomas and Jane Orcutt’s deed had been as brief as Mary’s!  However, the other two deeds described below are about as long and cumbersome.  Some interesting comparisons can be made.

Deeds of sale from the other brothers -- Peter and Ebenezer (and their wives) being made jointly September 10, 1708 (with witnesses John and Mary Brown; John being a Justice of the Peace for Middlesex, presumably the same John Brown that their mother Elizabeth Bulkeley Emerson married second); Edward (with wife Rebecca) and Daniel’s being made jointly September 11, 1708 (with witnesses Samull Phips and Ebenezeer Emerson).  All but Thomas and Jane Orcutt’s deeds are made with Josiah Thayer of Mendon (his purchases of this land went eventually to James Emerson) and executed between September 10 and 14, 1708.  Thomas and Jane Orcutt’s deed is directly with her uncle James Emerson, and executed almost two years prior to the other three.   It would be interesting to identify the Elizabeth Emerson who witnessed their deed.   Her uncle James Emerson had a daughter Elizabeth, b. 1687, who seems the most likely candidate.  (Interesting that this Elizabeth married Joseph Taft in 1708, which would have been two years after the date for the deed.)

The estate of James (2) Emerson was valued at 129 pounds, 7 shillings in October, 1680. 

Notes regarding Jane Emerson Orcutt’s aunts and uncles:

Great uncle John (2) Emerson married Ruth Symonds, daughter of Deputy-Governor Samuel Symonds (the several Samuel Phillipses descend from this branch).  John was the first Emerson graduated at Harvard, 1656 (was classmate there of Increase and Eleazer Mather); was ordained in 1663 and settled at Gloucester as the first minister of the town, remaining there until his death December 2, 1700.  In addition to his property in Gloucester, which included in whole or part the three principal saw and gristmills, he owned three farms in Ipswich, probably inherited from his father (see p. 7).  From his daughter Mary (b. 1665, d. 1708, m. Samuel Phillips in 1697) descend Wendell Phillips and Rt. Rev. Phillips Brooks, Bishop of Massachusetts.  

Rev. John Emerson addendum:  A Salem document of 1692 states that Goodwife Taylor testified that Mr. John Emerson and her brother Bridges pressured her to confess to witchcraft.   On May 19, 1692, John Emerson wrote a report -- possibly to Cotton Mather, since BKE cites it as coming from Mother’s Magnalia, Chap. vii, Appendix, Art. 18 -- that “Glocester was not alarumed last summer for a fortnight together by real French and Indians, but that the devil and his agents were the cause of all the molestation which at this time befel the town; in the name of whose inhabitants I would take upon me to entreat your earnest prayers to the Father of mercies, that those apparitions may not prove the sad omens of some future and more horrible molestations to them.”    [Thus we have clues for Rev. John Emerson’s involvement in the Salem Witchcraft hunts.]

Now, for Jane Emerson Orcutt’s direct uncles and aunts, the following notes:

James (3) Emerson was born at Wells, Maine, and died at Mendon, Mass. 1756.  He married Sarah Ingersol at Mendon, and they resided at Ipswich and Mendon.  James Emerson was a tailor and farmer.  As oldest son, he inherited 2/7 (a double share) of his father’s estate, and as we have seen, purchased the remaining 5/7 from his siblings or their heirs.  This land remained in his branch of the family for several generations.  Children: 1.  Elizabeth, b. March 6, 1687, d. 1760, m. 1708 Joseph Taft, Res. Uxbridge;  2.  Sarah, b.___, m. Nov. 4, 1709 Daniel Hall, Res. Sherborn;  3.  James, b. March 23, 1692, d. after 1757, m. Feb. 21, 1722 Sarah Lock, Res. 
Uxbridge;  4. John, b. December 28, 1696, d. 1780, m. Nov. 23, 1721 Mary Rice;   5.  Joseph, b. Dec. 18, 1696 [perhaps the day is wrong, and John and Joseph are twins? In an errata sheet on p. 417, BKE corrected John’s birth date, and perhaps another error was introduced], d. 1745, Res. Reading and Falmouth;   6. Ebenezer, b. 1698, d. after 1747, m. Elizabeth Walcott Abt. 1730, Res. Attleboro;   7. Nathaniel, b. Aug. 19, 1701, m. Joanna ___, Res. Mendon.

Lucyan (3) Emerson, b. at Milton Mass. Oct. 2, 1667, d. at Reading, Mass, 1740; m. May 14, 1683 Thomas Damon who was b. January 31, 1659 and d. Oct. 20, 1723, Res. Reading, Mass.  Children: 1.  Lucyan, b. May 20, 1684, m. 1706 Kendal Boutwell, Res. Reading;   2. Joseph, b. Sep. 28, 1686, d. 1777, m. (1) 1707 Mary Bachelder, (2) 1755 Lydia (Emery) Bancroft, Res. Reading;   3.  Ebenezer, b. Mar. 12, 1688, Res. Reading;    4.  Thomas, b. Feb. 9, 1690, d. 1708;   5. Elizabeth, b. June 26, 1693, m. Benjamin Gerry, Res. Reading;   6. Hannah, b. Feb. 16, 1695, m. Samuel Leman, Res. Reading;   7. Susanna, b. 1697, m. Nathaniel Townsend, Res. Reading;   8. Mehetabel, b. Nov. 20, 1699, m. Nathaniel Cowdrey, Res. Reading;   9.  Mary, b. Aug. 31, 1701, m. John Holden, Res. Woburn;   10. Thomas, b. Dec. 25, 1703, d. 1796; m. Abigail Blod [? illegible), Res. Sudbury;   11. Edward, b. ___;   12. John, b. May 10, 1709; 13. Abigail, b. Nov. 29, 1713, m. Robert Thompson. [Note: 154 years after the 1683 marriage of Lucyan Emerson to Thomas Damon, William Orcutt (6) married in 1837 Anna Esther Damon -- who was called Esther; is she possibly a descendant of the family of Thomas Damon?]  (Notes added 12/02 for JOH by DJS:  Not likely a descendant, though her Damon family may have same English roots.  Thos. D. comes from Reading, MA family, not Scituate MA family.) 

Edward (3) Emerson, b. at Mendon, Mass. April 26, 1670, d. at Malden May 9, 1743, very suddenly; m. January 27, 1697 at Chelmsford, Rebecca Waldo, daughter of Cornelius and Rebecca (Adams) Waldo of Chelmsford who was b. at Ipswich, Mass. Sept. 24, 1662 and d. April 23, 1753 at Malden.  They resided at Chelmsford with Deacon Waldo till 1703.  Mr. Emerson was a schoolmaster at Chelmsford before 1700.  He was in Charlestown from 1705-1713 (a surveyor of highways there in 1703).  In 1727 he appears at Newbury as a merchant, dismissed from the Chelmsford church to the Third Church, Newbury that year.  “He was a very devout man, and such was his sense of the dangers attendant upon wealth [which his father-in-law certainly possessed, granting him lands in Chelmsford twice in 1699], that he was in the habit of praying that his posterity might not be cursed with riches.  His prayers have been signally answered.”  (BKE, p. 51.)  Children:   1. Joseph, b. April 20, 1700, d. July 13 1767, m. Dec. 27,,, 1721, Mary Moody, Res. Malden [Note: many researchers have confused this Joseph (4)  Emerson m. Mary Moody with Jane Emerson Orcutt’s parents Joseph (3) and Mary ___; but this Joseph’s birthdate in 1700 makes it impossible he could have been father to Jane, b. 1679];   2. Elizabeth, b. April 19, 1701, m. ___ Edwards, Res. Newbury;   3. Edward, b. May 8, 1702, d. 1740, m. Nov. 13, 1729, Hanna Beals [or Beale?], Res. Boston;   4. Hannah, b. April 26, 1704, d. Feb. 2, 1705;   5. John, b. Feb. 27, 1706, d. July 11, 1774, m. Oct. 23, 1729 Elizabeth Pratt, Res. Topsfield.

Peter (3) Emerson, b. at Mendon 1673, d. 1749, m. November 11, 1696, Anna Brown b. at Reading 1678, daughter of Capt. John and Anna (Fiske) Brown of Reading.  Capt. John Brown later married Peter’s mother Elizabeth Bulkeley Emerson, following the death of his first wife and her husband in 1680, so Peter’s step-father, with whom he grew up, later became also his father-in-law.   Peter and Anna resided in Reading (now South Reading), on the farm inherited from Capt. Brown.  There is a delightful legend handed down in the family that described the Captain in his old age, who had an only child, a daughter.  He was said to have been walking alone one evening and was heard to say to himself, “Well, I have made up my mind to make my will, and I’ll give my farm to Anna, and then I’ll give Anna to Peter.”  (BKE, pp. 54-55.)  Children of Peter and Anna Brown Emerson: 1.  Anna, b. July 6, 1697, d. August 11, 1697;    2.  Elizabeth, b. Feb. 20, 1699, m. Eli Smith, Res. Hollis, NH;    3. Anna, b. March 9, 1701, d. Feb. 15, 1799 unmarried, Red. Hollis;    4. Brown, b. April 16, 1704, d. 1774, m. June 17, 1725, Sarah Townsend, Res. Reading;   5. Lucy, b. 1706, d. 1735;   6. Sarah, b. Nov. 8, 1708;   7.  Jane, b. Maarch 11, 1711, Res. Hollis;   8. Mary, b. Dec. 20, 1713, m. Aug. 3, 1738 Jonas Eaton, Res. Salisbury;   9. Daniel, b. May 20, 1716, d. Sept. 30, 1801, m. Hannah Emerson, Res. Hollis;   10. Katherine, b. Dec. 2, 1718, d. Aug. 2, 1809, m. (1) Feb. 9, 1746, Josiah Conant, m. (2) Dec. 18, 1777, Moses Thurston; Res. Dunstable.

Ebenezer (3) Emerson, b. __ at Mendon, d. 1751, m. (1) 1707 Bethia Parker, daughter of Nathaniel and Bethia (Polly) Parker of Reading who was b. 1685 and d. 1715; he m. (2) 1716 Mary Boutwell, daughter of Capt. James and Mary (Kendall) Boutwell of Reading who was b. in Reading 1685.  They resided in Reading.  Children: 1. Nathaniel, b. Mar. 31, 1705, m. April 15, 1725, Hephzibah Burnap;   2. Bethia, b. July 27, 1700, m. April 14, 1731, Nathaniel Parker, Res. Reading;   3.  Susan, b. March 8, 1713, m. Feb. 19, 1736, Isaac Burnap, Res. Reading; 4. Ebenezer, b. Jan. 6, 1716, m. (1) Feb. 19, 1736 Anna Nichols, m. (2) December 7, 1749, Rebecca Putnam, Res. Reading;   5.  James, b. Jan. 9, 1720, m. (1) Nov. 28, 1744, Mary Farrar, m. (2) Elizabeth Nichols, Res. Reading;   6. Joseph, b. Nov. 3, 1721, m. Dec. 7, 1740 Phobe Upton, Res. Lynn;   7. Thomas, b. July 12, 1724, d. 1810, m. (1) April 16, 1747, Elizabeth Bruce, m. (2) Mary Dresser (? illegible), 17__ (illegible).

Daniel (3) Emerson, b.___, m. May 19, 1709, Jane Armitage, daughter of Timothy and Johanna (Richardson) Armitage of Boston who was born at Boston November 10, 1676.  [Interesting note: on June 13, 1677 Richard Richardson of Boston deeded to his son-in-law, Timothy Armitage of Boston, mariner, house now in the occupation of Benjamin Franklin.]   Daniel Emerson was a shipwright, and they resided in Boston.  Children of Daniel and Jane Armitage Emerson:  1.  Johanna, b. October 2, 1710, d. 1742 (? difficult to read), m. 1731 James Maradia (sp?  difficult to read), Res. Boston;   2.  Timothy, b. October 10, 1712,, d. 1742, m. Feb. 26, 1741, Mary McMechan, Res. Boston;   3. Edward, b.__, d. March 19, 1787, m. Hannah___, Res. Boston.

Family of Thomas Orcutt and Jane Emerson

(Source for family charts: Frederic Scott Orcutt, Sr., Descendants of Thomas Orcutt, 1677 to 1977.  Other sources as indicated.)

As described above, Thomas (2) and Jane Emerson Orcutt married in 1703 in Hingham and settled there, where their six children were born.  FSO states (p. 39) that Thomas (2) Orcutt settled in Cohasset, Mass. where he owned his home in 1703.  There is no further direct reference to Thomas and Jane, and the dates and places of their deaths are unknown.  There can only be supposition based on information relating to his brother John also settling in the Hingham area (see p. 2 of this document), and on information relating to Thomas’ and Jane’s children, who are listed as follows:

1.  Jane (3) Orcutt, b. December 18, 1704, m. October 5, 1732 Moses Pratt, son of Aaron Pratt
                               (V.R. of Marriages, Cohasset, Mass.)

2.  Thomas (3) Orcutt, Jr. b. July 3, 1707, m (1) January 17, 1733 Thankful Jenkins of Hingham,
                                m. (2) May 15, 1744 Margaret (Ray) Sutton, Wid.

3.  Mary (3) Orcutt, b. Feb. 11, 1709/10, m. Dec. 11, 1737, Luke Roberts of Boston, Mass.

4.  Emerson (3) Orcutt, b. August 1, 1713, m. April 3, 1735, Mary Gardiner

5.  Hannah (3) Orcutt, b. February 21, 1716, d. Jan. 31, 1735 unmarried

6.  David (3) Orcutt, b. Dec. 31, 1720 (could be Dec. 21), m. 1749 Sarah ___ (Gen. Families of

FSO states also that there has been an error in old Orcutt manuscripts stating that Thomas (2) bought land in Ashford, Conn. in May 1716.  This land has been checked and found that it was Joseph (2) Orcutt that bought land in Ashford in 1716.  The descendants of Thomas (2) Orcutt migrated to Penobscot Co., Me. while his brother John’s descendants migrated to Hancock Co., Me.  (p. 39)

However, only one 4th generation branch from Thomas (2)s line did move to Maine.  As following charts will show, Thomas (3) Orcutt and his children and David and his son Reuben all appear to have remained in Massachusetts.  It was the 4th child, second son of Emerson (3), Emerson (4) who settled in Orrington, Maine, in 1771.  (See chart for him in next chapter.)  Orrington is located about 5 miles south and slightly west of Bangor, Maine. This writer has been in communication with a descendent of Emerson (4) who has energetically traced his family line thoroughly.  His name is Matthew Getz and in 2001 his website was http://www.familytreemaker.com/users/g/e/t/Matthew-A-Getz/index.html and his e-mail address was matthewg@bwirc.com. He says that his group left Hingham for Ashland ME [which is about 60 miles north of Bangor and 12 miles west of Presque Isle, Maine] and many settled also in Castine, ME [closer to Orrington, on the tip of a small peninsula in to Penobscot Bay, about 25 miles due south of Bangor].  He continues to do very active research.

Only one other record in the Hingham area might pertain to Thomas (2) Orcutt, and it is a puzzling one.  In “Records of Second Church of Scituate” (NEH&G Reg. Vol. 17, p. 401) is listed, apparently as being the 14th person that year who was admitted to the church’s communion on August 4th 1728, one “Thomas orcut [sic] of Hingham”.    This could also refer to Thomas (3) who would be termed also “of Hingham.”  Thomas (2) would have been 50 (51 in October) on August 4, 1728, while Thomas (3) would have been 21 the prior July 3rd.   Regarding Thomas (3): His first wife, Thankful Jenkins of Hingham Mass. was daughter to Edward and Martha (Damon) Jenkins of Scituate, Mass. [The V.R. of Scituate do contain records both of the intention and the marriage of Thomas Jr. of Hingham and Thankful Jenkins, 1733, p. 223.)  2nd Church Scituate (located actually near Norwell, Mass.) is approximately 8 miles from Cohasset, not impossible, but still quite some distance to go if a person regularly attended church.  It is important, also, to recall that ten of the twelve children of William 1 and Mary Martha Lane Orcutt were baptized by William Wetherell, first pastor of 2nd Church Scituate, so this was a “home church” for the family.] 

Was there a problem with the church in Hingham -- or special attraction to 2nd Church Scituate -- to cause either Thomas (2) or (3) to move membership to Scituate?  The third minister of the Hingham church was Rev. Dr. Ebenezer Gay, whose ministry there extended from 1718-87 when he died, thus nearly 70 years (Ecclesiastical History of Hingham by Francis H. Lincoln, p. 19, who goes on to quote Solomon Lincoln’s Memoir of the Rev. Dr. Gay, saying Whatever may have been the theological views entertained by Dr. Gay in the early part of his ministry, it is well understood that he sympathized with the spirit of free inquiry, which gradually wrought a change in the opinions of many eminent divines, commencing about the middle of the last century.  So Dr. Gay’s ministry was certainly of a more liberal cast, termed Arminian by some.   Again from Lincoln: It was during his ministry that the East, or Second Precinct was formed and a church established at Conohasset (now Cohasset). This was on March 25, 1720-21, shortly after the birth of Thomas (2) and Jane Orcutt’s youngest child David in December, 1720.   

On the side of 2nd Church Scituate around 1728: the fourth pastor was the Rev. Nathaniel Eels, whose ministry extended from 1704-1750 when he died.  Similar to the Rev. Dr. Gay, Eels forty-six years of service were singularly successful and happy, and from a small society his congregations had increased so largely that a larger house was needed as early as 1739.  (Old Scituate, published in 1921 by the Chief Justice Cushing Chapter of the DAR, p. 171-2.)   In a listing by the current 1st Unitarian Church, Norwell of the history of their ministers obtained by this writer in September, 2000), Eels is warmly described: He was much beloved by his parishioners who were always glad to have him ride his horse to their doors to inquire for their health and hand his pipe to be lighted with a coal from their open fireplace.  Expansion of the church had even been required during The Rev. Eels early ministry when the third meetinghouse had been raised in 1707, very near the site of the current church, now 1st Unitarian Church, Norwell. [JOH:  A later Orcutt wife, Esther Damon who M. William Orcutt (6), likely descends from Rev. Nathaniel Eels.  See Chapter Six on Esther Damon, p.5.]  It was the minister prior to Rev. Eels, Mr. Deodate Lawson, who had presented problems to the congregation; apparently Mr. Lawson didn’t find the ministry sufficiently remunerative, and was practicing some other profession, with the result to the church of his long and continued absence, requiring the church to dismiss him and seek another minister!  (Ibid, p. 171.)   However, this occurred long before 1728.   Unless Thomas (2) Orcutt had decided to return to the church where he had been baptized (although in 1728 in a different location, about 2 miles west of the meetinghouse location where he had been baptized in 1677; a boulder now -- summer, 2001 -- commemorates the location of that first meetinghouse utilized by the baptising minister Rev. William Wetherill), there seems no evident motive for Thomas (2) to undertake that curious 1728 membership in 2nd Church Scituate.   It seems to this writer more likely that it was Thomas (3) who is so listed.   Although it does not appear that Thomas (3) moved to Scituate at that time, it is striking that 5 years later he married Thankful Jenkins (though listed as being of Hingham, Mass. by FSO) whose parents Edward and Martha (Damon) Jenkins are from Scituate.  Whatever the initial reason may have been for Thomas (3) to move to that church, there appears the possibility that he met his wife there, although they do not marry there.   And, interestingly enough, as the following chart will show, Thomas (3) married as his second wife a woman whose parents are described as being of Scituate.

Descendants of Thomas (2) and Jane Emerson Orcutt 


Thomas (3) Orcutt, Jr. (Thomas 2, William 1), b. July 3, 1707 (V.R. Hingham, Mass.) and d. 1764 (History of Hingham, Mass.) married first on  January 17, 1733 Thankful Jenkins of Hingham, Mass., daughter of Edward and Martha (Damon) Jenkins of Scituate, Mass., who was born in 1712 and died after July 1741 and before 1744; he married 2nd May 15, 1744, Margaret (Ray) Sutton, widow of Nathaniel Sutton and daughter of James and Elizabeth (Foster) Ray of Scituate.  Thomas occupation is recorded as Trader (Lincoln, History of the Town of Hingham, Mass., vol. III,  p.100). 

Thomas (3) Orcutt, Jr.’s children with Thankful Jenkins: three sons:  Edward (4) Orcutt, b. May 6, 1736;  Seth (4) Orcutt, b. June 9. 1738;   James (4) Orcutt (who has no further record; presumed died young).

Thomas (3) Orcutt, Jr.’s children with Margaret (Ray) Sutton: two sons, two daughters:   Luke (4) Orcutt, b. 1745;   Martha (4) Orcutt, b. August 15, 1751, m. Jan. 30, 1772, Thomas Osyer (or Osayer) of Marshfield, Mass.;   Rueben (4) Orcutt, b. October 4, 1754 (V.R. Cohasset, Mass.), died young. 
Emerson (3) Orcutt (Thomas 2, William 1), b. August 1, 1713.  Note: This line will be pursued in the next chapter, with wife Mary Gardiner, whom he married in 1735; they moved to Abington, Massachusetts after 1766. 

David (3) Orcutt (Thomas 2, William 1), b. Dec. 31, 1720 (recorded in Hingham, Mass.), d. June 10, 1757; m. ___, Sarah ___ (The Genealogies of the Families of Cohasset, Massachusetts, G.L. and E. O. Davenport, 1909, p. 323), b. 1733/34 (figured from age at death), d. 1818, 84 years old (name at death: Rich; David’s widow married 2nd Mathias Rich, widr. of Truro, Mass. at Boston, and removed to Truro.  (Ref. NEH&G Register, vol 83, p. 394).  David (3) Orcutt lived on South Main Street in Hingham in 1749 (Davenports, p. 323). 

David (3) Orcutt served under Lt. Solomon on Wolf’s campaign against Quebec.  (Samuel (4) Orcutt, son of Ebenezer (3) Orcutt was also on this campaign [JOH:  Samuel and Ebenezer are of the John 2 line.].  Reference: Historical sketch by Gilbert Nash of Weymouth, Mass. p. 52; also NEH&G Register v. 83, p. 394 also Lincoln’s History of Hingham, Mass.  All taken from FSO, p. 46).

Jane’s Era

Jane Emerson Orcutt’s experience of her historical period may well have been related to involvements of her relatives in the developments of that period.  This may include that puzzling relationship her father seems to have had with the rest of his notable family and the curious comparable paucity of references to him.  She was 4th generation in the New World, for it was her great-grandfather Thomas Emerson who emigrated from England in 1635, the same year Mary Martha Lane’s father and grandfather also arrived in what became Massachusetts.  Her grandfather, a Puritan minister, petitioned Protector Oliver Cromwell to incorporate Wells, Maine, into Massachusetts, a controversial position.  Her great-uncle, the Rev. John Emerson, first pastor in Gloucester, was a Harvard classmate of Increase Mather, receiving a degree in 1659; in 1692, the period of the Salem Witchcraft craze, 11 years before Thomas Orcutt and Jane Emerson married, the Rev. John appears to have bullied Goodwife Taylor into confessing witchcraft, a confession she later repudiated.   Is it possible that Jane’s line, beginning with her father Joseph, the mystery man, reacted against the puritanical narrowness expressed in some branches of her family?  Is this in part why we hear so little of father Joseph, compared to his brother and half-siblings, most of whom seem to have been heavily involved in the church of that era?  Except for their marriage and the baptism of their children, there is no clear indication of church involvement by both Thomas 2 and Jane, so it is an intriguing piece of speculation.  But speculation, only. 

The fact that Jane’s surname, Emerson, becomes the given name for their 4th child and 2nd son, is a striking expression of their sense of family, whatever that family meant to her.   That Emerson given name continues for multiple generations, as does her given name, which seems to give her a kind of reflected spotlight. 

Naming patterns Thomas and Jane used for their children mostly follow those used in that era (alternating between husband’s family/wife’s family) -- her generation seems first to use the mother’s surname as a son’s given name, however.   Their first two children were named after themselves; 3rd child Mary’s name matches that of both Thomas and Jane’s mothers, as well as their sisters; their 4th child is that 2nd son Emerson (interesting that he is NOT Joseph, in the frequent pattern for a second son to be named after his maternal grandfather); fifth child is Hannah (Thomas had a sister Hannah, twin to Mary); and, interestingly, there is no good suggestion for a family connection to the name of David, their 6th and last child and 3rd son.

As remarked at the outset, it is intriguing to speculate how Thomas Orcutt and Jane Emerson may have met.  There appear to be no other family connections or any way of accounting for the distances between their homes in Bridgewater, Boston and Hingham.   The only suggestive clue is that in 1708, Jane’s sister Mary deeds her share of their grandfather’s land from Hingham, where she is a widow at that time.  As indicated above, however, it may be that Mary Noakes (Nokes in the deed conveyance) may have moved from Boston to Hingham to be near her sister, since Jane is already living in Hingham from the time of their marriage in 1703. 

In 1706 comes that exciting conveyance of deed, with Thomas Orcutt’s signature and Jane Emerson Orcutt’s mark, turning her share of her grandfather’s property over to her uncle James Emerson. [What a find, to discover a copy of a document signed by distant ancestors!] By that date, Jane and Thomas had their first child, Jane, born in December, 1704.    1706/7 is also the year of the death of Thomas grandmother, Triphena Lane, in Hingham.

The community in which Jane and Thomas lived -- 2nd precinct Hingham, which became Cohasset in 1770, probably after J & T’s deaths (date and place, sadly, unknown as of this date, 2002), is set at the head of a bay on the Massachusetts coast 12 miles south of Boston.   Hingham was settled in 1635, thus is among the oldest towns of Massachusetts.  The Rev. Peter Hobart of Hingham in Norfolk, England, came to join fellow townsmen in 1635, and accept their invitation to become first pastor of the church (Hingham was first named Bare Cove).  Thomas Orcutt’s maternal grandfather Andrew Lane and great-uncle George Lane (see pp. 3-4 of prior Mary Martha Lane chapter) were original proprietors in 1635.    The second pastor, Mr. John Norton, succeeded Hobart when he died in 1678, thus it was he who may have married Thomas Orcutt and Jane Emerson in 1703.   Hingham’s second meeting-house had been built in 1681 and survived until at least the late 19th century, perhaps well into the 20th. [JOH:  do not recall seeing a building of the shape drawn during a brief visit there in March of 2000, although we looked for it.]   A second church for Hingham’s 2nd precinct, Cohasset, was organized during the ministry of third Hingham minister, the famed Rev. Ebenezer Gay (considered one of the early liberal Unitarians), and Thomas Orcutt’s brother John was an original member in 1721.  The first minister of the Cohasset 2nd parish was the Rev. Nehemiah Hobart, grandson of the Rev. Peter Hobart, first minister of Hingham.

We do not know Thomas Orcutt’s profession.  According to FSO (p. 39) he owned his home in 1703.   His son Thomas 3 is described as Trader.  Thomas 2 does not appear on any lists of community leadership, as does his brother John 2 (Constable, 1712) and John’s son, Thomas nephew Samuel 3 (Selectman for 6 years).   It is puzzling that Thomas 2 does NOT show up on tax records for 1711.   Shipping and shipbuilding were major businesses in the Hingham/ Cohasset area -- could Thomas have become a seaman?    Did he and Jane maintain connections with Thomas Lane relatives, of whom there were many in the Hingham area?

Jane and Thomas raised five of their six children to adulthood.  But they lost their fifth child and 3rd daughter, Hannah, b. 1716, just prior to her adulthood when she died unmarried at age 19 in 1735.  Jane 3 married Moses Pratt of Cohasset; Thomas 3, as mentioned earlier, married 1st Thankful Jenkins, 2nd widow Margaret (Ray) Sutton, had three sons with Thankful and two sons and two daughters with Margaret; Mary 3 married Luke Roberts of Boston; Emerson 3 married Mary Gardiner of Hingham (see following chapter), and David 3 married Sarah ____ in Cohasset. 

At the time of Jane’s and Thomas marriage, Queen Anne was on the throne in England (1702-1714), succeeding her brother-in-law William, her sister Mary who had reigned with her husband having died childless by 1700 .  Queen Anne was an admirer and patron of the Rev. John Emerson, pastor of the New Castle, NH church, and sent frequent gifts (BKE, p. 63) -- this Rev. John is son of Jane’s great-uncle, the Rev. John Emerson of Gloucester of the witch trial era.    It was during Queen Anne’s reign that the Treaty of Union between Scotland and England took effect on May 1, 1707.  At her death in 1714 in accordance with the Act of Settlement of 1701 which was to secure Protestant succession to the throne, George, Elector of Hanover, became George I of Great Britain, and the Hanoverian House continued to reign on through the Victorian period and the beginning of the 20th century.   But George’s claim was quickly challenged by James Stuart, Roman Catholic son of James II, who responded to a Scottish rising in 1715 and landed there but was unsuccessful and soon withdrew.  George spoke little English, and spent much time in Hanover.  There was a rupture with his son George, Prince of Wales, and power was delegated to a Regency Council.  After the South Sea Bubble crisis of 1720, Robert Walpole took over as the first Prime Minister. 

George I died in 1727, succeeded by his son George II (1727-60).  His reign was threatened in 1745 when Charles Edward Stuart, the young Pretender, landed in Scotland.   Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated, however, at the Battle of Culloden in April, 1746.  

The foundations for the Industrial Revolution were laid during George’s reign, with new levels of production in industries such as coal and shipbuilding and also in agriculture, together with a rapid rise in population.  Overseas, trade was boosted by successes such as Clive’s victories in India (1751, 1757), which placed Madras and Bengal under British control, as well as Wolfe’s capture of French-held Quebec in 1759 (David Orcutt 3 and Samuel Orcutt 4 of John 2's line both participated on this campaign) which resulted in transferring Canada with its wealthy trade in fish and fur from French to British rule.  George II died in 1760 and was succeeded by his grandson, George III, since eldest son Frederick had died in 1751.  It was George III who reigned (1760-1820; he became mentally deranged in 1788, recovering in 1789, but relapsing in 1810) through the period of the American Revolution.   

Depending on how long Jane Emerson Orcutt lived, her era saw the blossoming of the Brittish Empire in both its industrial and colonial power.  If by some chance she lived to be nearly 100, she would also have seen the beginnings of that empire’s crumbling, with the independence of the USA.
Descendants of Thomas Orcutt 2 and Jane Emerson, continued:
Following the line of Edward 4 Orcutt, who settled in Western Massachusetts


Edward (4) Orcutt (Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. May 6, 1736, bapt. May 30, 1736, d. January 6, 1801 in Goshen, Mass.; m. Mehitable Hudson (called Hattie), daughter of Joseph and Martha (Lincoln) Hudson of Cohasset, bapt. June 13, 1736 in Cohasset. 

Seven children with Mehitable (Hattie) Hudson:  James (5) Orcutt, b. May 3, 1761;  Mathew (5) Orcutt, b. April 19, 1764;    Thomas (5) Orcutt b. March 15, 1766;   Quartus (5) Orcutt, b. Mar. 20, 1768;   George (5) Orcutt, b. Nov. 21, 1771;   Origen (5) Orcutt, b. May 5, 1773; Thankful (5) Orcutt, d. 1861, Marietta Ohio, m. Dr. Bildad Curtis of Plainfield, Mass. in 1804 and removed to Marietta, Ohio.

Edward (4) Orcutt served in the Revolutionary War as Private in Captain Christopher Bannister’s Co., John Dickenson’s Regt.  Enlisted August 17, 1777; discharged August 22, 1777.  Company marched to Bennington on an alarm to reinforce army near that place (Mass. Soldiers and Sailors in Revolutionary War, p. 662).   Edward (4) Orcutt formerly lived in Hingham but removed to Goshen, Mass. in 1763 or 64 [located about 30 miles northwest of Springfield in western Massachusetts, in the Berkshires; hence the propinquity for the march to Bennington, Vermont, during the Revolutionary War].  According to FSO (p. 29) He was a well-to-do sort of a man but had some ways that were different from those of most people [!  What were these?  Something genetic?].  Land records found: June 4, 1762 John Marks of Greenwich, Mass. [this writer finds no Greenwich, Mass. so perhaps the name has changed.] for L7.10 S deeded to Edward Orcutt of Hingham 72 d. lot in 2nd Div. of Tract in Hampshire Co. called New Quabbing west of Hatfield, a part of Narragansett Twp. #4 50 acres.  On the same date Edward Orcutt bought 2 other parts in same area from Lemuel Lyon of Woodstock, Worcester Co., and John McWhorten of Greenwich, Mass.   (Reference from FSO: land R. Hampden Co., v. 4 pages 590, 594, 595.  Reference for this chart compiled by F.W. Ingalsbe.  V.R. for birth of children Chesterfield, Mass. [see children 2-6 below] from Ruth A. Baker, Clerk.)

James (5) Orcutt (Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. May 3, 1762; bapt. May 1, 1763 (V.R. Cohasset) m. 1791 Clarissa Arms of Deerfield (Reference History of Goshen published 1881, by Hiram Barriss, p. 159; a slightly later history published 1883 by Sheldon [Shildon?  FSO gives two spellings, p. 49 and p. 57] v. 2, p. 258 says he was paying tax in Deerfield, Mass. from 1783-1789).  Served in the Revolutionary War: Descriptive list of men detached from Col. Israel Chapin’s (2d Hamshire Co.) regt. for the term of 3 months, agreeable to resolve of June 22, 1780, dated Northampton, Sept. 14, 1780; Lieut. Lyon’s co.; age, 19 yrs.; stature, 6 ft.; complexion, dark; engaged for town of Chesterfield; mustered July 5, 1780; also, Private, Capt. Ebenezer Sheldon’s co., Col. Seth Murray’s regt.; enlisted July 14, 1780; discharged Oct. 10, 1780; service, 3 mos. 4 days, including 7 days (132 miles) travel home; regiment raised to reinforce Continental Army for 3 months.  (Mass. Soldiers And Sailors of the Revolutionary War, p. 663.)    FSO goes on to state that he was also stationed at West Point for a time in command of the guard at the great chain across the Hudson River when the troops of Washington rushed by to secure Arnold for his treachery (p. 57). 

Issue of James (5) Orcutt and Clarissa (Arms) Orcutt (per FSO, p. 57, records compiled by F.W. Ingalsbe): 1. Sophronia (6) Orcutt, d. Dec. 3, 1848 in Goshen, Mass.;   2.  Wealthy (6) Orcutt;   3.  Josiah Arms (6) Orcutt, b. 1819 figured from date of name change, Probate record of name changes for Mass. 1780-1792, p. 91, March 23, 1840: Josiah Arms Orcutt, age 21, may take the name Josiah Orcutt Arms.  Per FSO, no reason given for name change.

Mathew (5) Orcutt (Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. April 19, 1764, North of Chesterfield [located about 7 miles south and slightly west of Goshen], Hampshire Co., Mass. [No further record.]

Thomas (5) Orcutt (Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. Mar. 15, 1766 in Gore adjoining North of Chesterfield, as above, d. August 20, 1847 age 82 years at Westhampton, Mass. [located about 10 miles southeast of Chesterfield], m. April 23, 1795 Sally Carpenter, b. 1759/60, d. July 16, 1835 at Westhampton, Mass.  (FSO Note: Land records vol. 19, 0. 472: Thomas Orcutt of Goshen buys for $1340 land in Buckland [about 12 miles north and slightly west of Goshen] Oct. 20, 1803; v. 70, p. 142: Thomas Orcutt of Buckland sells 1/2 parcel for $800 to Thomas, Jr.  Jan 6, 1829 Thomas Orcutt of Buckland sells all Real Estate owned by him in Buckland to Thomas, Jr. 9v. 89 p. 74 for $575.--signed by Thomas Orcutt and Sally Orcutt, seal Hervey Orcutt witness (FSO, p. 58).

Issue of Thomas (5) Orcutt and Sally Carpenter Orcutt, three children: (reference: F.W. Ingalsbe): Harvey (6) Orcutt (Hervey, Henry on some records), b. July 10, 1801;   Thomas (6) Orcutt, b. Sept. 19, 1806;   Laura (6) Orcutt, b. 1808 in Goshen, m. (Int.) Dec. 5, 1818, Edmund Perkins (Buckland marriage records).

Quartus (5) Orcutt (Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. March 20, 1769 in the Gore joining North of Chesterfield, Mass. (this place is between Chesterfield and Goshen), d. November 11, 1821 of Nunb [?] palsey (old Bible record), bur. first in old Fort Stanwix Cem. and afterwards taken to cem. in Rome, NY, m. by 1798, Mary ____, b. ___, d. April 5, 1813 of epidemic fever (old Bible record), bur. Cem. at Rome, NY.    Note: The old Bible had only the names and date of birth of the issue.  This Bible in possession of Mrs. C. Albert Krumm of 105 Kossuth St. Rome, NY, granddaughter of Quartus (5) Orcutt; a copy of the records of this Bible are in the Jervis Library, Rome, NY.  Mrs. C. Albert Krumm furnished the names that each child married and the death record when known.  Land Census record of owners in 1814 Rome, N.Y. gives Quartus Orcutt 50 acres (FSO, p. 59), Quartus must have moved there before or by the time their children were born (the first listed as born there 1798). 

Issue of Quartus (5) Orcutt and Mary ___: 5 children; Edward (6), b. November 18, 1798; Mehitable (6) Orcutt, b. March 3, 1801, d. Feb. 1872, m. July 16, 1820, Nathaniel Jewell; Matthew (6) Orcutt, b. October 1, 1804, m. Feb. 27;   Francis (6) Orcutt, b. March 30, 1806;   Emily (6) Orcutt, b. Feb. 18, 1808, d. Jan. 1, 1874, m. M.A. Shephard. 

George (5) Orcutt (Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), B. Nov. 21, 1771.  No further record found by FSO.

Origen (5) Orcutt (Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. May 5, 1773 in the Gore adjoining North of Chesterfield, Mass., d. July 8, 1833 age 60 years at Goshen, Mass., m. March 3, 1796 Eunice Ripley of Windsor, Berkshire County, Mass. (Congregational Church record and V.R. Windsor, Mass.), b. 1782/83 (figured from age at death), d. June 26, 1842 age 59 years. 

Issue of Origen (5) Orcutt and Eunice Ripley, 5 known children, 2 with question: Origen (6) Orcutt, b. 1797; Edward (6) Orcutt, b. 1798/99 figured from aged at death, d. Oct. 3, 1835, Troy, NY, bur. Old Eda Cem. lot #328;   Luther (6) Orcutt;   Sophia (6) Orcutt, b. 1807 at Goshen, Mass., D. June 26, 1842;   Alvin (6) Orcutt, b. July 1809 at Goshen Mass.;    then those with question: Hudson (6) Orcutt and Zerviah (6) Orcutt.  No further information on these found by FSO, p. 60.


Harvey (6) Orcutt (Thomas 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1) (name Hervey, Henry on some records), b. July 10, 1801 at Buckland, Mass., d. Dec. 8, 1873 age 72 years in Westhampton, Mass. m. August 15, 1826 Mary Field (this V.R. gives his name as Dr. Harvey; the Field Gen. p. 423 gives the marriage date as Aug. 15, 1825 to Dr. Henry Orcutt of West Hampton, Mass.), daughter of Rev. Timothy Field of Westminster, Windham Co., Vt., b. Sept. 12, 1897, d. March 28, 1884, Westhampton, Mass.

Note: W.B. Gay Gaxeteer of Hampshire Co., Mass. Part 1, p. 456: Dr. Hervey Orcutt came from Chicopee, Mass. in 1835, bought the Nathan Clark place where he lived until he died.  He wathe only physician in Westhampton, Mass. for years  (FSO, p. 69). 

Issue of Harvey/Hervey/Henry Orcutt and Mary Field:   3 daughters, 1.  Mary Elizabeth (7) Orcutt, b. June 14, 1829, m. William E. Lyman, November 13, 1851;    2.  Ellen S. (7) Orcutt, b. 1833, d. Sept. 19, 1836;    3.  Helen Antoinette (7) Orcutt, b. 1839, d. Dec. 11, 1892 in Westhampton; she never married, was a school teacher in Westhampton and very active in the temperance cause there.  (FSO, p. 69: Reference for this chart from records compiled by F.W. Ingalsbe.)

Thomas (6) Orcutt (Thomas 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. September 1806 in Goshen, Mass.  d. April 17, 1870 in Buckland, Mass., m. (1) March 20, 1829 Abigail Perkins, daughter of Edmund Perkins, b. 1808/09, d. April 8, 1842 (V.R. Buckland), no issue this union; he m. (2) July 31, 1842 Minerva Taylor, daughter of Samuel and Sarah (Butler) Taylor, b. Oct. 23, 1816, d. Sept. 13, 1865 at Buckland; m. (3) September 6, 1866 Cynthia Taylor, daughter of Levi and Betsy (Butler) Taylor and cousin to Thomas 2nd wife Minerva (Taylor) Orcutt, b. July 3, 1815, Buckland, Mass.  FSO gives no issue from this third marriage.

Issue of Thomas (6) and 2nd wife Minerva Taylor, 5 children all born in Buckland, Mass. and recorded there: Thomas Ashton (7) Orcutt, b. May 27, 1843;  Abigail (Abbie) Perkins (7) Orcutt, b. July 15, 1845, m. Nov. 9, 1866 Marcus Lanphear;    Sarah Delia (7) Orcutt, b. Jan 2, 1847, m. March 21, 1871 Fayette Nichols;    Baxter Adino (7) Orcutt, b. July 6, 1849;  Celie Minerva (7) Orcutt, b. May 16, 1851, m. Nov. 3, 1870 Adolphus R. Martin; they lived for many years at Chicopee Falls, Mass; issue one child Cora Minerva Martin, b. Aug. 16, 1876.  (Reference: records compiled by F.W. Ingalsbe.)

Thomas 6 made will Aug. 10, 1869 #7466.  Bur. Buckland, Mass.

Edward (6) Orcutt (Quartus 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. Nov. 28, 1798, Rome, NY, d. February 20, 1861 m. Jan. 18, 1821 Lovisa (or Lovira) Hawley, b. Sept. 8, 1804, d. Feb. 29, 1884. 

Issue of Edward (6) Orcutt and Lovisa (FSO:  Lovira) Hawley, 3 children: Edward Burr (7) Orcutt, b. Feb. 22, 1822;   William Furness (7) Orcutt, b. April 15, 1825, Rome, NY, d. Nov. 25, 1845 (no further records found by FSO, p. 70);   Polly Maranda (7)      

FSO note: Edward (6) Orcutt and wife went to Ohio about 1832 but returned to NY in 1838 located in Monroe County; family record gives place as Brockport, Monroe Co., NY [20 miles west of Rochester, NY].  C.R. 1840 Brockport, NY p. 284 records Edward 96) Orcutt under name of Edwin Orcutt age 40-50, 2 sons 10-15 & 1 female 20-30 (p. 70).
Mathew (6) Orcutt (Quartus 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. Oct. 1, 1804 (Bible record); Oct. 3, 1903 [sic; must mean 1803] (Hist. & Dictionary of Kent Co., Mich.), d. May 26, 1889, bur. Livingston Cem. Plainfield, Kent County, Michigan (Hist. & Dictionary of Kent Co., Mich. in 1970 gives Mathew Orcutt bur. section 20 Livingston Cemetery.  He was pioneer in Plainfield, Kent Co., Michigan in 1847), m. Feb. 27, 1827 Dolly Smith, daughter of Michael and Nellie Smith who settled in Liberty, Jackson County, Michigan in 1844, b. Aug. 27, 1809 Albarn NY, d. Nov. 1, 1892, bur. Livingston Cem., Plainfield, Michigan. 

Issue of Mathew (6) Orcutt and Dolly (Smith) Orcutt, 2 children: Michael Edward (7) Orcutt, b. 1834 in Oneida Co., NY;   Della M. (7) Orcutt, b. Aug. 27, 1844 in Liberty, Jackson County, Michigan, m. Jan 27, 1868 Joseph Babka in Plainfield, Michigan.  (Reference: records of F.W. Ingalsbe who received a letter from Mrs. Dolly Mae (8) Orcutt Damn, granddaughter of Mathew (6) Orcutt which gave a very complete family record and descendants of Michael Edward (7) and Della M. (7) Orcutt.

Francis (6) Orcutt (Quartus 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. March 30, 1806 Rome, NY, d. August 7, 1874 in Rome, NY, Oneida County, bur. Cem. Wright Settlement, m. (1) Feb. 22, 1835 Caroline Glass, b. October 12, 1811, d. Feb. 24, 1860, bur. at Wright Settlement; m. (2) Margaret Bidell, no issue.

Issue of Francis (6) Orcutt and Caroline (Glass) Orcutt, 4 children:   Francis Lewis (7) Orcutt, b. May 27, 1836;   George Jay (7) Orcutt, b. 1840, d. 1909 in Rome, NY, m. Dec. 12, 1866 Julia Broduck, issue 2 children in Rome, NY: Geoge Frank Orcutt, d. in childhood;   Nellie (8) Orcutt, b. Aug. 7, 1873, d. Jan. 18, 1917, m. Arthur McKee, no issue; Delia Caroline (7) Orcutt, b. 1846, m. June 15, 1869 Albert N. Briggs;   Norman Glass (7) Orcutt, b. March 10, 1849, m. (1) October 19, 1876, Laura Matteson, m. (2) Ida Leggitt, d. 1936.  No issue is recorded for these children, except for Francis Lewis (7) Orcutt, below.  (Reference: record compiled by F.W. Ingalsbe from family records of Mrs. Delie (Briggs) Krumm, granddaughter of subject.  1835 census of Rome, NY records Francis Orcutt; also a will.)


Edward Burr (7) Orcutt (Edward 6, Quartus 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. Feb. 22, 1822; Rome or Brockport, NY, d. Feb. 1, 1894, Faribault, Minn, m. June 13, 1851, Sylvia Dunning, b. Feb. 24, 1834, d. April 21, 1909.

Note: Reference Rice County, Minn. History, p. 532.  E.B. Orcutt at the age of 10 moved with his parents to Ohio (1832).  They returned to NY in 1838 and located in Monroe Co.  He had charge of a boat on the Erie Canal until 1852 when he moved to Beaver Dam, Wisconsin.  Reference to following chart also Old Family Bible of Mrs. F.J. Orcutt, daughter-in-law of Edward (7) and Sylvia Dunning Orcutt.

.   Their issue: 1.  William Furness (8) Orcutt, b. Mar. 10, 1853 Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, m. Lydia A. Schrieber Oct. 6, 1893 Faribault, Minn; 2.  Francis Jay (8) Orcutt b. July 24, 1855 Beaver Dam, Wis. or Faribault.  m. Hannah A. Smith March 7, 1889; 3. Mary Maranda (8) Orcutt b. April 1, 1857 Faribault, Minn. m. F.J. Clorrow Dec. 25, 1879; 4.  Dollie Lovisa (8) Orcutt b. Dec. 19, 1859 Faribault, Minn. m. W.A. Thompson of Faribault April 18, 1885; 5.  Minnie D. (8) Orcutt, b. Dec. 20, 1861, Faribault, Miss. d. Dec. 13, 1916; m. D.A. McLean, Dec. 24, 1883 Faribault, Miss. 

Reference for this chart also Old Family Bible of Mrs. F.J. Orcutt, daughter-in-law of the subject.

Michael Edward (7) Orcutt (known as “Miko”) (Matthew 6, Quartus 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. 1834 in Oneida Co., NY; d. Nov. 12, 1897 in Moorland, Mich.; m. Caroline Chidester (also spelled Chidister family record) dau. of John Chidester and Caroline (Davidson) Chidester of Laketon Twp., Muskegon Co., Mich.  She b. 1846, d. Sept. 21, SDD sd FDV1921 at home of dau. Dolly Mae (Orcutt) Damm/ Mrs. Carl P. Damm (V.R. Muskegon Co., Mich.).  

   Their issue: 1.  Michael Angus (8) Orcutt, b. Aug. 19, 1868, m. Sadie M. Shavalier May 14, 1904; 2.  Adelbert (8) Orcutt, b. 1873, m. Auda Jennings; 3.  Pearl (8) Orcutt, b. Oct. 10, 1874, m. Fred A. Corner/Comer of Detroit, Mich.; 4.  John Michael (8) Orcutt, b. Feb. 7, 1875, Egleston Twp., Mich.; 5.  Dolly Mae (8) Orcutt, b. June 9, 1878, Egleston Twp., Mich., m. Carl Peter Damm Nov. 5, 1904; 6.  Augustus (8) Orcutt, b. March 8, 1883, Egleston Twp., Mich., living at Ardenvoir, Washington in 1940.

Francis Lewis (7) Orcutt (Francis 6, Quartus 5, Edward 4, Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1), b. May 27, 1835, Rome, Oneida Co., NY, d. July 16, 1887, Sheridan, Iowa; m. 1st Roxy Brainard March 3, 1859 and moved to Iowa near Grinnell 1865; she d. Dec. 8, 1877; m. 2nd Anna Hartzell, June 1, 1879.

  Issue of Francis Lewis (7) Orcutt and 1st wife Roxy Brainard, 4 children: 1.  John L. Orcutt, b. Nov. 9, 1860, Rome, NY, d. Nov. 16, 1886, married but no issue, went to S. Dakota as farmer and returned to NY, bur. Wright Settlement, NY; 2.  DoEtta Caroline (8) Orcutt, b. March 6, 1863, Rome, NY, m. Isaac Beatty June 7, 1881; 3.  Francis Edward (8) Orcutt, b. Aug. 7, 1867, Grinnell, Iowa, m. 1st Sarah Stocking March 6, 1887, m. 2nd Matilda Theodora Hansen Nov. 19, 1909; 4.  Charles Stanley (8) Orcutt, b. May 30, 1875, Sheridan, Iowa, m. Blanche E. Wiltamuth Nov. 27, 1897.

  Issue of Francis Lewis (7) Orcutt and 2nd wife Anna Hartzel, 3 children: 5.  Helen M. (8) Orcutt, b. Jan. 18, 1880, d. Aug. 5, 1887;   6.  Lewis Percival (8) Orcutt, b. Oct. 2, 1881, d. Nov. 12, 1900 of typhoid; 7.  Jay Reginald (8) Orcutt, b. May 9, 1884 at Grinnel, Iowa, m. Caroline Hillman June 1, 1912, Searsboro, Iowa, issue 3 children, he was a hardware merchant in Searsboro, Iowa in 1938. 

(compiled by Judy Orcutt Holy)

Mary Gardiner

Emerson Orcutt (3) (Thomas 2, William 1), continued the pattern of Orcutt men marrying into families which had come to the New World before their own ancestor had arrived.   On April 3, 1735, he married Mary Gardiner, daughter of John and Rebecca (Ripley) Gardiner of Hingham (FSO, p. 44, cites marriage recorded Cohasset, Mass., and states that Jas. M. Craft’s book of Hingham, Mass. gives her name as Mary Garnett but marriage and birth record gives her parents’ names as John and Rebecca Gardiner).

Background to their marriage: 

Emerson Orcutt (3) was born August 1, 1713 (according to FSO, date could be April instead of August, as the record is illegible) as fourth child and second son of Thomas Orcutt (2) and Jane Emerson Orcutt.   According to George and Elizabeth Davenport’s The Genealogies of the Families of Cohasset, Massachusetts, 1909, reprinted 1984, p. 322, the births of all six of Thomas and Jane Orcutt’s children took place in the second precinct of Hingham, which later (1770) became separate as Cohasset.   Emerson (3) appears to have lived in the Cohasset area up to the time of their 1735 marriage, after which he and Mary moved to Scituate, and later to Abington, Massachusetts.

Mary Gardiner (Gardner, Garner, Garnet)’s background:

What is currently known (3/2002) of the Gardiner/Ripley families comes in outline from family trees gleaned from various sources, which will be related in full below.  According to George Lincoln’s History of the Town of Hingham, Massachusetts, vol. II, The Genealogies, pp. 244-245, John Gardner (3) was born in Hingham January 4, 1683/84.  He married Rebecca ____, who survived him and married secondly, Samuel Whiton, widower, on November 11, 1747.  John Gardner had died April 20, 1742, aged 58 years.  He resided at “Liberty Plain,” South Hingham.   

Children of John Gardner (3) and Rebecca, all b. in Hingham, were:  1. Rebecca, March 2, 1711/12 m. Apr. 21, 1736 Benjamin Dunbar, widr; 2.  Susanna, Dec. 2, 1714 m. Jan 28, 1734/35 Jonathan Brown; 3.  Mary, Jan. 19, 1717/18 m. Apr. 3, 1735 Emerson Orcutt; 4.  John, Feb. 5,1719/20;  5.  Rachel, Jan. 3, 1723/24 m. Aug, 1742, Joshua Stodder; 6.  Amos, May 8, 1726 m. Aug. 13, 1747 Mary Jones of Ab’n;  7.  Alice, Feb. 15, 1729/30 m. Feb. 2, 1748/49 Daniel Gardner of Scit. [a 4th cousin];  8. Grace, Dec. 31, 1732;   9.  Mercy, Jan. 29, 1735/36.
From the same source, p. 243, John Gardiner (3)’s father was John Gardner (2), baptized in Hingham July 17, 1652 [JOH: this would likely have been performed by the Rev. Peter Hobart;

see  prior chapter 2 on Jane Emerson, p. 20].  He married Feb. 25, 1682/83 Mary Stowell, dau. of
Samuel and Mary (Farrow) Stowell.  She was bt. in Hingham Oct. 16, 1653, and d. 22 Oct. 1714,
age 61 years.  He d. 16 Dec. 1700, age 48 yrs.  Resided at “Liberty Plain,” South Hingham.

  Their children, all b. in Hingham: 1.  John 2, Jan. 4, 1683/84; 2.  Mary 2, Aug. 3, 1686, d. 4 Dec. 1715; 3.  Ruth 2, Feb. 12, 1688/89, m. May 31, 1722 Amos Berry of Weymouth; 4.  Elizabeth 2, Oct. 24, 1691; 5.  Hannah 2, May 12, 1694, m. Dec. 16, 1731 Daniel Caryl or Carrel; 6.  Remember 2, Sept. 25, 1697.

John Gardiner (2)’s father, similarly, was John Gardiner (1).  According to Lincoln, pp. 242-243, John Gardner came to Hingham about 1650, and in 1656 had land granted to him in the south part of the town.  Whether he was a connection of the early Garners, or Gardners, of Boston is uncertain, as but little information has come down to us relating to his early history. 

However, according to Charles Henry Pope, The Pioneers of Massachusetts, p. 181, there is the following account which links to this earliest John (Gardner, Gardiner, Gardener, Gearner) in Hingham:

“John, Plymouth, servant to Kenelm Winslow, was transferred to George Kenrick in 1635.  Propr. 2 Nov. 1640.  Settled at Hingham.  Propr. 1656.  Wife Mary; ch. John bapt. at H. July 17, 1652, Francis bapt. March 31, 1653, Mary bapt. Nov. 19, 1654, (m. Nathan Farrow,) Samuel bapt. March 23, 1655/56, Deborah bapt. July 5, 1657, James bapt. Feb. 4, 1659/60, Stephen bapt. Aug. 14, 1662, Thomas bapt. June 5, 1664, Benjamin bapt. April 7, 1666, Christian bapt. June 3, 1668 (m. Joseph Dunbar.)   He d. 24 Nov. 1668.  Inv. filed 28 April, 1669.”

Pope’s list of children and their baptismal dates are identical with that of Lincoln, the only difference being added information from Lincoln regarding marriages of the children of John 1.   
The information in Pope’s account about Plymouth and John 1’s apparent indenture periods and owning of land in Plymouth prior to becoming a proprietor in Hingham may bear potential for further research on him.  From Pope’s account, he appears to have arrived in Massachusetts perhaps even prior to 1635, but no later than that date.  If it was prior, then the Gardiner family would be the earliest of the families connected by marriage with the Orcutts to settle in New England. 

Possible corroboration for Pope’s account of this Plymouth episode comes in Eugene Aubrey Stratton’s Plymouth Colony, Its History and People 1620-1691, 1986, p. 376:  “On 22 February 1635/36 John Gardiner, a servant of Kenelm Winslow, had the rest of his time turned over to George Kenrick (PCR 1:37).”   Kenelm Winslow, a brother of the Edward Winslow who became governor of Plymouth Colony, arrived at Plymouth before 1 January 1632/33 when he became a freeman (PCR 1:5).  Edward Winslow [and thus Kenelm Winslow as his brother] was son of Edward and Magdalene (Oliver) Winslow of Droitwich, Worcestershire, England.  The first

Edward was a prosperous salt merchant, son of Kenelm Winslow, “yeoman.”  His son the second
Edward went to Leiden where he became associated with William Brewster in the printing business.   He was a principal diplomat and trade negotiator, Assistant, and governor in Plymouth.  Stratton’s account of the Winslow/Kendrick agreement is as follows (p. 182):  “Kenelm Winslow’s servant, John Gardiner, by the agreement of all concerned, was turned over on 22 February 1635/36 to George Kendrick, and Kendrick was to assume Winslow’s obligations to Gardiner, except that Gardiner, in return for an extra six bushels of corn at the end of his term, was willing to free Kendrick of being obligated to teach him the trade of joinery.”  (Stratton cited PCR  1:37 for this statement.)   Kenelm Winslow is described in other references as “joyner.”  Joinery is the early term for furniture carpentry.   This stipulation suggests that John Gardiner could have functioned as an apprentice to Winslow, who also had Samuel Jenny apprenticed to him for four years on 6 January 1633/34 (Stratton, p. 376, citing as source PCR 2:176.)    George Kenrick, to whom John Gardiner’s service was turned over, is named to a group charged in March 1636/37 to study the feasibility of moving the town of Plymouth (Stratton, p. 76). 

About George Kenrick (Kendrick, Kererick, Kinrick) Pope (p.266)  says the following:  “George, came in the ship with Rev. Richard Mather from Bristol, Eng., May 23, 1635.  Settled at Scituate; yeoman, took John Gardiner as an apprentice 22 Feb. 1635-6.  Adm. chh. with wife April 9, 1637.  Rem. To Barnstable, then to Boston.  Volunteer for the Pequot War 1637.  Town officer 1640.” (p. 266)   Did John Gardiner go on to Scituate and then Boston with Kenrick?

An Internet pedigree chart says John 1 Garnet (Gardner) was b. 1624 in Plymouth.  That pedigree states that this John 1 married on 10 April 1651 in Boston Mary Arnold (Arnald), b. abt. 1630 in Boston, d. 9 Oct. 1710 in Hingham.   [JOH:  However, this 1624 birthdate seems unlikely; there are no Plymouth records supporting such a birth there just 4 years after the arrival of the Mayflower. Nor were there any Gardners living in Plymouth that early – or anyone with the cognate names – who would have been parents. The only Gardiner on the Mayflower was a Richard Gardiner, unmarried, a seaman who returned to England and did not remain in Plymouth.  A John Gardiner from another Gardiner line was born in 1624, likely confused here.]

According to Lincoln, pp. 242-243, John 1's wife Mary survived him and married second, June 18, 1669, Nathaniel Chubbuck.  The inventory of John 1's estate was appraised by John Tower and John Ripley, 28 Apr. 1669, at 44 pounds, 11 shillings, and included “the Goats that have been sold to pay debt and maintain the family.”   Wife Mary was administratrix. 

Lincoln adds to Pope’s information on John 1 and Mary’s children above, that Francis 2 married Joanna, daughter of Samuel May of Roxbury on Jan. 5, 1680/81; James 2 married Elizabeth Ward, daughter of Henry and Remember (Farrow) Ward on June 18, 1685 [JOH note:  this may be a sister to Frances Ward who married Andrew 2 Orcutt of Weymouth; she and James 2 would be great aunt and great uncle to Mary Gardiner]; Stephen 2 married on Dec. 22, 1687 Sarah Warren, daughter of John and Deborah (Wilson) Warren of Boston;  Thomas 2 married Dec. 17, 1705, Judith Tower; Benjamin 2 married Jan. 13, 1695/96 Sarah, daughter of Robert and Rose Dunbar; and Mary 2 married Nathan Farrow on Dec. 5, 1683.

That south Hingham section where John 1 settled later is called “Liberty Plain.” and is the residence given also for 5 of his 7 sons:   John 2, Francis 2, James 2, Stephen 2, Benjamin 2, as well as grandsons, among them John 3, father of our Mary Gardiner who married Emerson Orcutt 3.    So our Mary probably grew up there.  According to a current (1995) map of Hingham,
it appears that south Hingham would be in the direction of Cole Corner.  Cohasset is about 4 miles east of Hingham. [JOH has Hingham maps from 1878, showing that Hingham Centre is south of the head of Hingham Harbour, whereas the current location for Hingham is somewhat southwest of the harbor area.  It is not yet clear to the writer whether “Liberty Plain” was part of Hingham Centre, or yet south of that.] 

As mentioned before, the Rev. Peter Hobart was first pastor of the Hingham church, from 1635 until his death in 1678, thus until that date baptisms and marriages in Hingham were likely performed by him [JOH:  there is some question about who performed marriages in the early colonial period.  At least one document states that only magistrates were to perform marriages.  However, this may have been because many early communities did not yet have pastors].  He was followed by the Rev. John Norton, 1678-1716.   The first meeting-house in Hingham was built in 1635, surrounded by a palisade erected in 1645 to “prevent any danger that may come into this town by any assault of the Indians” (from Francis H. Lincoln’s Ecclesiastical History of Hingham, available on the Internet at http://genweb.net/~blackwell/ma/hingham/ecclhist.html).  This building was used for 45 years, until 1680.  During the Rev. Norton’s pastorate, the second meeting house was completed in 1681.  In 1717 the famous Rev. Ebenezer Gay became third pastor of the Hingham church (he was ordained June 11, 1717 so may have baptized Mary Gardiner b. Jan. 19, 1717/18; the Rev. John Norton had died in 1716 and the church was without a settled minister for twenty months) and served until his death in 1787 (see prior Jane Emerson chapter, p. 17, for a sketch on him).   However, it is unlikely that he performed the marriage of Mary Gardiner and Emerson Orcutt 3, since that 1735 marriage is recorded in Cohasset. 

The Cohasset -- or East or Second Precinct -- church was formed around 1717, the area originally called Conohasset.  However, also during Dr. Gay’s pastorate, yet another church was formed in the Hingham boundaries in 1742, called “Third” Church until Cohasset became established as a town separate from Hingham in 1770; thereafter it was styled the “Second Church.”

Francis H. Lincoln comments:  “The second and third churches were not formed as separate organizations without the earnest protest of the parent church.  Perhaps, like a fond mother, she could not bear the thought of trusting her children alone, separated from her protecting influence.  But she could not restrain or control the independent determination of her children, and, in spite of all her opposition, they forced her to accede to their wishes. 

“Undoubtedly this sentimental view had much influence, but our ancestors were in a great degree matter-of-fact people, and there was a practical side to this opposition to the foundation of new parishes, which had more weight than any sentiment.  All real estate within the territorial limits of a parish was in those days taxable for the support of preaching.  Much of the real estate lying within the limits of the proposed Conohasset and South Parishes was originally granted to

residents of the more thickly settled portion of the town, and had been inherited or purchased by those who would still remain residents of the First parish; and naturally enough there was strong objection to being taxed for the support of preaching in parishes from which no direct benefit
would be derived.”  (p. 24 of pages printed from web site)

It may be that the Gardiners, living in South Hingham, were affected in 1742 (when Mary was 25) by this creation of the “Third Church” and perhaps were not members.  Is that why Mary and Emerson 3 married in Cohasset, the community where his family lived, in 1735?   Normally, a woman would be married in the location of her own family if her parents were living, and Mary’s parents were both living in 1735.

Further research may shed light on the pre-Hingham origins of John Gardiner 1.

Mary Gardiner’s maternal line has been given extensively in a pedigree chart available on the internet. (FamilySearch Ancestral File v4.19, accessed through Familysearch.com by asking for Elijah Orcutt m. Prudance [sic] Hayden).  Her mother’s name is confidently given there as Ripley, with the following background [Generation numbering in the following is added for clarification by JOH]:

Rebecca Ripley [4], b. 20 Nov. 1674 in Hingham, m. John Gardiner [3] 22 Nov. 1711 in Scituate [!].  [Note that Lincoln states that Rebecca survived John and married Nov. 11, 1747, Samuel Whiton, widower, John having died in 1742 aged 58.] No death date is given for Rebecca from this source.

Her father was Abraham Ripley [3] of Hingham, b. 1624 [probably in England, since Hingham didn’t begin to be settled until 1633], d. 11 Oct. 1683 in Hingham; married Jan. 2, 1659 Mary Farnsworth, b. 30 Mar. 1637 Hingham, Norfolk, England, d. after 11 Oct. 1683.

Abraham Ripley’s father is given as William Ripley (Repley) [2], b. 1600 England, d. 11 July 1656, Hingham, Suffolk, Massachusetts.  He married Elizabeth ____, b. 1600 in England.  Their 9 children:   1.  Phebe Ripley 3, b. 1619 in Norfolk, England, d. 9 Oct. 1710, Plymouth, Mass.;
2.  John Ripley 3, b. 1622 “Of Hingham, Plymouth, Mass.” [but Hingham wasn’t settled until 1633!], d. 3 Feb. 1684, Hingham, Mass.;  3.  Abraham Ripley 3, b. 1624 “of Hingham”  [should be England], d. 11 Oct. 1683, Hingham; 4. ____ 3, b. about 1626, Mass. [Hingham not yet settled];   5.  Mary Ripley 3, b. about 1628 “of Hingham”;   6.  Ripley [??] 3, born about 1628, “of, Hingham, Norfolk, England” [this suggests error for John 3 b. Mass.]; 7.  Dau. Ripley  3, b. About 1628 Hingham, Plymouth, Mass. [same problem]; 8.  Daughter Ripley 3, born about 1619 Hingham, Norfolk, England [this, once again, fits, as does the next child’s birthplace]; 9.  Sarah Ripley 3, christened 28 Oct. 1627 Wymondham, Norfolk, England [entry says she was born there in 1631, clearly there is an error somewhere, since she couldn’t have been christened four years before she was born], d. 29 June 1715, Hingham.


Insert:  According to Lincoln’s Hingham genealogies, William [would have been this William 2] “and his wife, and 2 sons and two daughters [internet chart above lists 9 children; perhaps more than one died, and/or others emigrated at other times?] came from Old Hingham and settled in New Hingham, 1638.  (Cushing’s MS.)  The same year he had a grant of land at Hing. Centre containing four acres, a large proportion of which is still held in the family name.  Unfortunately, our rec’s furnish no information relating to the w. who came with him and was the mother of his ch., nor is her chris. Name or date of death known.  For his sec. w. he m. in Hingham  Sept. 29, 1654, Mrs. Elizabeth Thaxter, the wid. Of Thomas Thaxter.   She outlived him , and m. for her third husband, Jan. 20, 1657-58, John Dwight of Dedham, and d. 17 July, 1660.  William d. 20 July, 1656.   Will dated June 30, 1656, proved 24 Jan. 1656-57.  “Weaver.”  Resided on Main St., by the “training field,” Hing. Centre.  Ch., prob. B. in Engl, were--  1.  John [designated 2 in Lincoln; here, 3 to relate to internet chart addition];  2.  ____ 3; a dau., name not ascertained;   3. Sarah 3, ___ m. Nov. 18, 1652, Jeremiah Beal;  4.  Abraham 3, ____.   (Lincoln, pp. 131-132.)

In the internet chart, William Ripley 2’s father is given as William Ripley [1], b. 1568 Wramplingham, Norfolk, England; d. 31 Aug. 1613, Wymondham, Norfolk, England.

According to the internet chart, Abraham Ripley 3 and Mary Farnsworth had 9 children: 1.  Mary Ripley 4, b. 1 May 1660 in Hingham; 2.  Abraham Ripley 4, b. 21 Sept. 1661 in Hingham, d. 24 April 1697;   3.  Elizabeth Ripley 4, b. 13 Nov. 1664 in Hingham, died there 30 June 1667; 4.  Joseph Ripley 4, b. 25 Jan. 1667 in Hingham, died 3 July 1737 in Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard; 5.  Hester Ripley 4, b. 24 July 1670 in Hingham; 6.  Rebecca Ripley 4, b. 20 Nov. 1674, Hingham;   7.  Isaac Ripley 4, b. 21 Aug 1678 in Hingham; 8.  James Ripley 4, b. 19 Sept. 1679 in Hingham;   9.  Alice Ripley 4, b. 17 Sep. 1682.

George Lincoln’s Hingham genealogies gives the following listing for Abraham Ripley:

“Abraham 2 [3 via internet chart] (William 1 [2 via internet chart]), b. in Eng.  m. Mary Farnsworth.  She survived him, and m. secondly, in Hing. June 17, 1684, Edward Jenkins of Scit.  Abraham d. 11 Oct. 1683.   Resided on Main St., near “Pear Tree Hill,” Hing. Centre.  Ch., all b. in Hing., were – 1.  Mary [4], May 1, 1660; 2.  Abraham [4], Sept. 21, 1661;  3.  Elizabeth [4], Nov. 13, 1664, d. 30 June 1667;   4.  Joseph [4], Jan. 25, 1666-67, d. 3 July, 1737;   5.  Hester [4], July 24, 1670;  6.  Rebecca [4], Nov. 20, 1674;  7.  Isaac [4], Aug. 24, 1678.”    (G. Lincoln, p. 132.) 

From the internet chart source, Mary Farnsworth 3 (our Mary Gardiner’s maternal grandmother), wife of Abraham Ripley, was b. 30 March, 1637 “of Hingham, Norfolk, England”), d. after 11 Oct. 1683.  Her father was Joseph Farnsworth 2, b. about 1612 Prestwick, England, d. 12 Jan 1659 in Dorchester, Norfolk, Mass., married 29 Dec. 1625 in England Elizabeth Mason, who was born about 1615 in Lancanshire [?], England.   Joseph Farnsworth’s parents were William Farnsworth 1, b. 1675 Lancanshire, England, who married 5 Feb. 1600 Grace Bolton, b. 1579 Lancanshire, England.

According to this source, our Mary Gardiner’s great grandfather Joseph Farnsworth 2 and wife
Elizabeth Mason had 17 children [?? – since 3 Hannahs b. 1638 are questionable, likewise for 2 Rebeccas b. 1639; several of these clearly died in childhood, viz. repetitious given names; also with variant spellings of the surname; this could also reflect a blending of more than one Farnsworth family] as follows:   1.  Joseph Farnsworth 3, b. 1626, christened 26 Dec. 1631 in
England;  2.  Elizabeth Farnsworth 3, b. 1631, christened 26 Dec. 1631 England;   3.  Joseph Farnworth [sic] 3, b. about 1632 “Of Hingham, Norfolk, England” [if he stayed in Dorchester after immigration there in 1638, perhaps it was he who married Mary Martha Lane’s aunt Mary, her second husband; see chapter 1 on Mary Martha Lane, p. 2];   4.  Esther Farnsworth 3, b. 1633, christened 30 Jun 1622 England;   5.  Elizabeth Farnworth [sic] 3, b. Abt. 1634 “Of Hingham, Norfolk, England”;  6.  Ester Farnworth [sic] 3, b. abt. 1636 “Of Hingham, Norfolk, England”; 7.  Mary Farnsworth 3, b. 30 Mar. 1637 “Of Hingham, Norfolk, England” christened 1638/39 Dorchester, Suffolk, MA; died aft. 11 1683 Oct.;   8.  Hannah Farnsworth 3, b. 14 Dec. 1638 “Of Hingham, Norfolk, England”, christened 1638;   9.  Hannah Farnworth [sic] 3, b. 1638, christened 30 Oct. 1638 Dorchester, Suffolk, MA, d. before 2 1659 Jan.;   10.  Hannah Farnsworth 3, b. 14 Dec. 1638 “Of Rehoboth, Bristol, MA”, d. bef. Feb. 1659/1660 Mass.;   11.   Rebecca Farnworth [sic] 3, b. 1639, christened 5 Nov. 1639 Dorchester, Suffolk, MA; 12.  Rebecca Farnsworth 3, b. 2 Jan. 1639 Dorchester, Mass., christened 1639;   13.  Leonor Farnsworth 3, b. 14 Nov. 1639 Dorchester, MA;  14.  Rachel Farnsworth 3, b. 1641/41 Braintree, Norfolk, MA, christened 1741 [sic; typo!], d. 10 Jul. 1675 Mendon, Worcester Co., MA;   15. Ruth Farnsworth 3, b. 3 June 1642 Dorchester, Suffolk Co., MA, christened 1642;  16.  Samuel Farnsworth 3, b. 27 Aug. 1644 Dorchester, MA, christened 1644, died young; 17.  Samuel Farnworth [sic] 3, b. 30 Mar 1647 Dorchester, MA, christened 30 Mar 1647 Dorchester, Suffolk, MA, also died young.

If aspects of this pedigree chart can be believed, the Farnsworths immigrated to Massachusetts in 1638 or 1639, apparently arriving and settling in Dorchester.  Curiously, Lincoln records no Farnsworths in the Hingham genealogies.

This series of pedigree charts for our Mary Gardiner lists her grandfather John Gardiner as John Garnet (Gardner) [2], b. 17 Jul. 1652 in Hingham, MA, d. 16 Dec. 1700, m. 25 Feb. 1682 in Hingham Mary Stowell, thus Mary’s paternal grandmother.

Mary Stowell [5] was b. 15 Aug. 1653 in Hingham and died there 22 Oct. 1714.

Her father was Samuel Stowell [4], by. 1625/1635 “of Hingham, Plymouth, Mass.” [thus he was the Stowell family immigrant, living in Hingham by the time of his marriage in 1659, see Lincoln account below],  d. 9 Nov. 1683 in Hingham; married 25 Oct. 1649 in Hingham Mary Farrow [see p. 8 below].

Samuel Stowell’s father was Samuel Stowell [3], b. 4 Jan. 1581 “Of Resmeen, Somerset, England”, d. 7 Dec. 1628 Chudleigh, Somerset, England, m. Abt. 1619 “Of Resmeen England” Mrs. Samuel Stowell, b. about 1593 “Of Norfolk, Hingham, Eng.”

Samuel [3]'s father was James Stowell [2], b. 1549 Bath Abbey, Somerset, England, d. 6 June 1587 in England; married 1574 in “Of Bath Abbey, Somerset, England” Mrs. Stowell, b. 1553 “Of Bath Abbey, Somerset, England.”

James Stowell [2]'s father was John Stowell [1], b. 1520, Bath Abbey, Somerset, England, married abt. 1548 there Mrs. Stowell who was b. abt. 1523. 

Insert regarding Samuel Stowell [4] from G. Lincoln’s Hingham genealogies:   “Samuel, whose name is mentioned in Hobart’s Diary [presumably this is the diary of the Rev. Peter Hobart of Hingham] as early as 1649, m. in Hing. Oct. 25 of that year, Mary, dau. of John and Frances Farrow.   She survived him, and m. secondly, Oct. 10, 1689, Joshua Beal, Widr.  Samuel, d. 9 Nov. 1683.  His will, dated 27 Oct. 1683 , was proved 30 Jan. foll.  Inv. 185 pounds, 1 shilling, 2d., as appraised by John Marsh and Thomas Lincoln [this would be one of the four Thomas Lincolns of Hingham; possibly Mary Martha Lane’s uncle, married to her aunt Annis Lane?  See chapter 1 on Mary Martha Lane, p. 3].  Resided on Fort Hill St.   Ch., b. and bt. In Hing., were:  1.  Mary [5], Oct. 16, 1653, m. Feb. 25, 1682-83, John Garnet;   2.   Samuel [5]. July 8, 1655;  3.  John [5], March 15, 1657-58;  4.  David [5], Apr. 8, 1660, m. (1) Dec. 4, 1685, _____, and, it is said, removed to Cambridge, where he m. (2) Apr. 7, 1695, Mary Stedman.  They afts. settled in Newton.  She d. 1 Oct. 1724.  He d. at an advanced age.  “Weaver;” and long kn. In Newton as “Old Stowell,” 
   His ch. were, 1. David [6], m. (1) Elizabeth ____, (2) Patience [6], and d. at H. 1724.  2.  Benjamin    [6], d. unm. at N. 1729;   3.  Samuel [6], was a clothier, and lived at Watertown.  He d. 1748;  4.   Ruth [6], m. ____ Osborne;  5.  John [6], m. Nov. 1, 1722, Mrs. Sarah Ford of Wey., and lived at Watertown;  6.  Mary [6], m. ____ King;  5.  Remember [5], Apr. 22, 1662, m. March 16, 1687-88, Thomas Remington;  6.  An Infant [5], Sept. 5, 1664, d. 21st of same month;  7.  William [5], Jan. 23, 1665-66;   8.  Israel [5], Apr. 27, 1668, d. 15 Nov. 1669;  9.  Israel [5], Aug. 10, 1670;  10.  Elizabeth [5], June 7, 1673, m. Dec. 14, 1699, George Lane [it is difficult to identify this George Lane; Mary Martha Lane’s uncle George Lane died in 1698, and had no son named George – see p. 3 of chapter 1 on Mary Martha Lane; possibly this is a child of one of his sons?] .”  (G. Lincoln, pp. 216-217.)

Mary Farrow has the following chart from the internet source: b. 22 Sep. 1633 Norfolk, Hingham, England, d. 24 Oct. 1709, Hingham, Plymouth, MA, married 25 Oct. 1649 Samuel Stowell 4 in Hingham, MA.

Mary Farrow’s chart shows her parents as John Farrow, b. 1590 “Of Hingham, Norfolk, England”, d. 7 Jul. 1687 Hingham, Plymouth, MA, m. 1632 in Hingham, Norfolk, England, Frances Carpenter, b. 1612 Hingham, Norfolk ?, England, d. 28 Jan. 1688 Hingham, Plymouth, MA.

John Farrow’s parents were Nicolas Farrow, b. 27 Jan. 1576 Bramfield, Suffolk, England, m. 1587 [at age 11??] in Hingham, Norfolk, England, Mrs. Farrow, b. abt 1580 [she was 7 when married??], Bramfield, Suffolk, England.

Mary Farrow’s paternal great-grandmother Frances Carpenter’s parents were William Carpenter, b. 1576, Howll, Lincoln, England, d. 1659/1660 Weymouth, Norfolk, Mass., m. 1605 in Salisbury, Wilts, England Mary Bath, b. 1603/04, in unknown, Hampshire, England, d. before May 1638 Wherewell, Hampshire, England ?

Insert here regarding two notes of interest showing a connection among no less than 3 Orcutt lines, all via Mary Farrow Stowell (and see also p. 3 above for a Gardiner connection as well):  This paternal grandmother of Mary Gardiner, Mary Farrow, also turns out to be the aunt of Abigail Farrow Tower Horsewell, third wife of John 2 Orcutt, uncle to Mary G’s husband Emerson.  Abigail Farrow Tower Horsewell Orcutt’s father was John Farrow, Jr., third child to John Farrow, Sr. and younger brother to Mary Gardiner’s grandmother Mary Farrow Stowell.  This makes [if my calculations are correct] Abigail Farrow Tower Horsewell Orcutt blood-great aunt to Mary Gardiner Orcutt.  Her great-uncle by marriage, John 2 Orcutt, was uncle to her husband Emerson 3 Orcutt.

The second Orcutt line which connects with the Farrow/Carpenter line of Mary Gardiner:   Andrew 2 Orcutt married Frances Ward, daughter of Henry Ward and Remember Farrow.  Frances Ward’s mother Remember was younger sister to Mary Farrow, grandmother to Mary Gardiner who married Emerson 3 Orcutt (thus Andrew 2 Orcutt and his wife Frances Ward Orcutt were great uncle and great blood-aunt to Mary Gardiner Orcutt.  Her husband Emerson 3 Orcutt was Andrew 2 Orcutt’s nephew).  Further, as shown on p. 3 above, her great uncle James Gardiner married Elizabeth Ward, sister to Frances Ward. 

For all three families, through the wives, there was great-uncle/aunt connections. 

The John 2 Orcutts continued to live in Hingham.  The Andrew 2 Orcutts lived in Weymouth.  The Emerson 3 Orcutts moved from the Hingham/Cohasset area to Abington.  

The multiple connections here (and there may well be others) underline the way families maintained family connections through the colonial period.  A family’s move from one locality to another usually involved family connections, which would have included William 1 Orcutt and his sons and their families.  Weymouth is about 2miles from Hingham which is about 5 miles from Cohasset; Abington is about 9 miles from Weymouth.

*** Note:  the above information for Mary Gardiner from this internet chart -- where not already verified as indicated above -- should certainly be confirmed for accuracy if it is to be trusted.  It seems not to have been carefully proofread and contains discrepancies as indicated above.  (Family tree charts almost never account for discrepancies, by their very format).  The information from this one is given here only to provide clues for Mary Gardiner’s ancestry where no others occur.


Family of Emerson 3 Orcutt and Mary Gardiner

(Sources: FSO’s Descendants of Thomas Orcutt, 1677 to 1977, and others as indicated.)

Mary Gardiner was 17 when she married Emerson Orcutt on April 3, 1735, and her husband was 22.  She, especially, was rather young according to the contemporary age patterns at
marriage.   That they lived in several locations is discernible from the baptismal places of their children.

Baptisms of the children of Emerson 3 and Mary Gardiner Orcutt as recorded occur, first, in Cohasset:   unnamed son b. July 14, 1736 who died two days later, therefore is not counted among the 7 children listed by name.  Next, there is some discrepancy as to where their next child and first surviving son, 1.  Elijah 4 was born.  The Scituate V.R. state Elijah 4 was born June 5, 1737, but the source for the record is not given.  FSO states (p. 44) that Elijah was born June 5, 1737; bapt. July 10, 1737 (recorded Cohasset, Mass.)    Cohasset V.R. state Elijah was bp. July 10, 1737, giving C.R.I. as source (which normally means “Church Record 1st church”; that reference puzzles JOH, since the Cohasset church was initiated in 1742, five years later; perhaps C.R.I. means First Church Hingham?).   Davenports’ The Genealogies of the Families of Cohasset, Massachusetts, p. 323, states that Elijah, Hannah and Emerson were baptized in Scituate, and Jane was baptized in Hingham, sec. pre. [i.e., Cohasset].  So there is some lack of clarity among the various records.

FSO notes also, after Elijah 4 b. June 5, 1737, bapt. July 10, 1737, and 2.  Hannah 4, b. Feb. 28, bapt. June 8, 1740, that Emerson 3 and Mary’s third named child, 3.  Mary 4, b. Feb. 12, 1743/44 (V.R. Abington, Mass.) must have died young, for Emerson and Mary had another daughter later who was also recorded by the name of Mary.  The death record for this first Mary has not been found.  She probably died after Emerson and Mary removed to Abington, Mass. and the birth record was recorded at Abington at the time of her death.   4.  Emerson 4, b. July 24, 1745 (V.R. Scituate, Mass.; also recorded in the “Olde Orrington Book, Maine v. 8, p. 160).  

According to FSO, the remaining 3 children were all born in Abington:   5.  Jane 4, b. March 25, 1749 (V.R. Abington, Mass), bapt. Oct. 7, 1759 (recorded Cohasset, Mass. [as noted above, the Davenports say Jane was b. 7 Oct., 1750 in Hing., sec. pre., i.e. Cohasset]);  6.  David 4, b. May 16, 1752, d. 1769, was frozen to death from exposure at Nantasket, Mass. [which is located just east of Hingham]; and 7.  Mary 4, b. Feb. 12, 1756 at Abington, Mass. (Orcutt reunion [not explained by FSO]).

Assessing these records, it appears, as FSO states on p. 45, that Emerson 3 and Mary (Gardiner) Orcutt, who in 1749 lived on So. Main Street in Cohasset (Davenports, p. 323), settled in Scituate after their marriage in 1735 and later moved to Abington, Mass.   The reference to living in Cohasset in 1749 probably comes from property records.  Since Jane 4 was born in Abington in 1749, it seems likely that the family moved there that year.

Emerson 3 bought 40 acres of land in Abington from Joshua Shaw (FSO cites Plymouth, Mass. record B. 53, p. 105, but does not give a date for this transaction [it may be of interest that Emerson 3's descendant, William 6, married 2nd, Anna Shaw age 37 March 13, 1849, daughter of Brocklin and Ann Shaw -- Brackley and Anna, according to V.R. Abington; further research could possibly discover a link]).  In 1762 [Emerson 3] sold 10 acres of the original purchase to John Ford (recorded B. 52, p. 24).

In 1763 Emerson 3 Orcutt sold to his son, Emerson 4 Orcutt 7 acres from the same original purchase (recorded B. 52, p. 25).  Emerson 4 would have been just 18 at that time; it is interesting to speculate what he would have used to buy the property, since the record specifically states:  “sold”.  This left Emerson 3 with 23 acres of his original purchase of 40 acres.  To this 23 acres he then added 20 acres purchased of Edward Cobb in 1766 (recorded B. 54, p. 58) making a total of 43 acres in his possession. [Emerson 3's son Elijah served in the Revolutionary War in Capt. Edward Cobb’s Company, Major Carey’s Regiment, in 1780, 14 years later; was this the same man?]

Abington can be located on a current (1995) map of Massachusetts as about 11-12 miles (as the
crow flies, direct) south and west of Cohasset, and about 11 miles west and south of Scituate.  (The town of Scituate is about 6 miles south and slightly east of Cohasset.  However, if Emerson 3 and Mary Gardiner Orcutt resided closer to South Scituate, now called Norwell, then they lived 1/3 of the way between Cohasset and Abington before moving to Abington. 

Abington was first settled around 1668-69, about 75 years before Emerson 3 and Mary Gardiner Orcutt moved there with their three youngest children.    Pratts were early settlers in the area, since after the year 1672 the heirs of Phineas Pratt had grants located here; possibly this is an ancestor to the Nathaniel Pratt whom Mary Gardiner Orcutt married after Emerson 3’s death.    Andrew Ford of Weymouth was one of the buyers of a tract purchased in 1668 from Plymouth colony; in 1762, Emerson 3 Orcutt sold 10 acres of his original 40-acre purchase to a John Ford, quite possibly a descendant of that early Abington settler Andrew Ford.

The first minister of Abington’s first church was the Rev. Samuel Brown, who was ordained in 1714; his successor was Ezekiel Dodge, who was ordained in 1750 (and may have baptized the 3 youngest children of Emerson 3 and Mary Orcutt).  Mr. Dodge was succeeded by the Rev. Samuel Niles, who was ordained in 1771, and died in 1814.   There was no other church until 1808. 

Abington is described in a book sketching the history of individual Massachusetts towns as “perhaps the best grazing town in Plymouth county.”  It has not yet been possible to identify Emerson 3’s occupation, but since he twice bought acreage in Abington (totaling 60 acres), farming seems a genuine possibility. It is worth noting at this point that Emerson 3 is the first of 5 generations of Orcutt males to dwell in the area in and around Abington:  Elijah 4,


Emerson 5, William 6, and William Edwin 7 as a youth also lived there.    (William 6 and William Edwin 7 are listed by FSO as living in Hanover, which became a separate entity in 1727.  Hanover center is about five miles due east of Abington center.) 
Emerson 3 Orcutt died before 1778 (likely 1777 or early 1778 as his widow Mary married Nathanial Pratt Oct. 8, 1778, recorded V.R. Abington, Mass.)   He was buried probably in
Abington, according to FSO, p. 44.

Three of Emerson 3 and Mary (Gardiner) Orcutt’s 5 children who reached adulthood married in Abington:  Elijah (although he married Prudence Hayden of Scituate in Scituate, all their children were born in Abington, and both Elijah and Prudence died there; see following chapter); Hannah who married David Cobb June 11, 1763 (V.R. Abington, Mass.)  -- this David perhaps was related to the Edward Cobb from whom Emerson 3 later made his second purchase of acreage (20 acres in 1766; and the second Mary who married Jacob Thayer Dec. 12, 1778 (V.R. Abington, Mass.).  Jane 4 married William Sprague, Jr. at Cohasset, Mass.  Oct. 3, 1776 (V.R. Abington, Mass.). 

It was their son Emerson 4 among the descendants of Thomas 2 who first moved farthest from the Orcutt lands in Massachusetts after marrying his 1st wife Ann Mansell August 8, 1770 (V.R. Scituate, Mass.).  She was daughter of John Mansell who came to Scituate, Mass. from Scotland via London in 1740 at the age of 18.  Emerson 4 (sometimes referred to as “Amasa”) and Ann (Mansell) Orcutt settled in Orrington, Maine in 1771, shortly after their marriage.

FSO believes that Mary Gardiner Orcutt Pratt would have been buried “probably at Abington, Mass.” although no death record nor place has been located as of yet.  It would be under the name Pratt, since she married Nathanial Pratt in 1778 in Abington.    

Mary’s Era

Since we don’t know Mary Gardiner Orcutt Pratt’s date of death (sometime after her second marriage in 1778, when she was age 60), just as for that of her mother-in-law Jane Emerson Orcutt, for this sketch the presumption is that she may have lived until around the end of the 18th century when she would have been 82.   Two months after her own re-marriage, Mary’s youngest child and namesake, Mary 4 Orcutt, age 22, married Jacob Thayer in Abington on Dec. 12, 1778. 
Just as appears to be the case with Mary Martha Lane and Jane Emerson, Mary Gardiner’s maternal ancestry all comes from England, as probably does that of her father, and she herself is 4th generation in the New World via her paternal grandmother.  If her great-grandfather, John 1 Gardiner came to Plymouth at least by 1635 and possibly somewhat before, then her family line may be the earliest in the New World among the families intermarrying with this line of Orcutts.
(This would be splitting hairs, since many of the Orcutt wives’ ancestors arrived right around

1635, including those of both Mary Martha Lane and Jane Emerson.)

As did all from those early generations, Mary certainly experienced many of the rigors of colonial America.  Their son, sixth child David (was he named for his father’s younger brother?), tragically froze to death from exposure at Nantasket in 1769 at the age of 17.   But before that, their first child, a boy, died two days after his birth in 1736.  Their 3rd  child and second daughter, named Mary probably after her mother, who was born in 1743, also seems to have died as a child, though perhaps not quite so young as the first baby.   Mary Gardiner Orcutt did have a surviving namesake later in their last child, Mary born in 1756.  But she and Emerson lost 3 children. 

By the time of Mary’s marriage at age 17 in 1735, George II was on the throne in Britain; she was 27 and had given birth to four children, two of whom still survived, when the Jacobites under Bonnie Prince Charlie were defeated in 1745 at the Battle of Culloden in Scotland (her son Emerson 4 married Ann Mansell, the daughter of a Scotsman).  Her brother—in-law David 3 Orcutt participated in Wolfe’s capture of Quebec from the French in 1759. 

Those French and Indian Wars ended in 1763.  By that point, the American colonies had grown to be a strong and thriving part of the British Empire, and their people were passionately concerned to manage their own affairs.   From then on, strains grew between the American colonies and Great Britain, particularly relating to increasing burdens of taxation from which the colonists felt they did not benefit, such as from the Townshend Acts of 1767.  Ultimately, in 1774, the First Continental Congress declared that no taxation of any kind was legitimate without their consent.  Thus the breach developed between the country of her birth and the country of her ancestors.  1774 was also the year of the Boston Tea Party.  In Massachusetts John Adams responded to the appeals of Loyalists like Daniel Leonard. 

In April 1775, the battles of Lexington and Concord took place on Massachusetts soil, not so very far from Abington.   The battle of Bunker Hill was fought on 17 June, 1775 – participated in by Joseph Emerson, ancestor of Lydia Emerson Woolever, wife of Willard Merton 8 Orcutt (see chapter 8 below).  Soon the likes of Thomas Paine were arguing for complete separation from Britain, with the Declaration of Independence affirmed the following year.  

As has often been noted in social-cultural histories of the early colonial period, world events did not often impact directly on the busy-with-survival lives of the colonists.  But for Mary and Emerson, the next event certainly did.

As noted above, Mary’s oldest child, son Elijah served as a Revolutionary soldier, marching from Massachusetts to Rhode Island in 1780, two years after Mary’s remarriage.  Her first husband Emerson 3 Orcutt appears to have died during the early years of the Revolutionary War, or just before.   The scene of battles shifts soon from Massachusetts for Mary and her family.  But perhaps she lived long enough to hear the news from the Constitutional Convention in


Philadelphia in 1788 (she would have been 70 if so).   Rufus King and Elbridge Gerry from Massachusetts were participating.   Sam Adams refused to participate; John Adams was in London, but was vitally interested in the convention. 

Furthermore, Massachusetts had just suffered public humiliation over Shays’ rebellion in the west in 1786, where farmers had revolted against ruinous taxation “by Boston” they said, and marched on county courthouses after the best Revolutionary technique, frightening sound-money men out of their wits and rousing General Washington to express disgust and anger that a country which had won a difficult war was not able to keep order in peacetime (Catherine Drinker Bowen, Miracle at Philadelphia, 1966, p. 10).

Whether or not she lived to see the result of an independent and United States of America, Mary Gardiner Orcutt Pratt was affected by the momentous events of the century in which she lived.

(compiled by Judy Orcutt Holy 3/2000)

Prudence Hayden

Elijah Orcutt, fourth generation of Orcutts in Massachusetts, was born June 5, 1737 in Hingham second precinct (became Cohasset).  He was baptized July 10th of that year (church records Cohasset).  By 1749, he and his parents and siblings moved to Abington (see prior chapter).  On January 4, 1770 he married Prudence Hayden of Scituate, in Scituate (V.R. Scituate).   Prudence, daughter of William and Anna (Stetson) Hayden, was born in 1748/49 (figured from age on death record).  Elijah died December 21, 1821 in Abington, aged 84 years; Prudence survived him by 11 years and died there May 29, 1832 (both from V.R. Abington).

FSO titled Prudence Hayden “Mrs. Prudence Hayden.”  Believing then that she was a widow, JOH hunted for indications of a prior marriage to learn her maiden name, but without success.  Finally, having found separate marriage records listing her as both “Mrs. Prudence Hayden” and “Prudence Hayden,” a search began for her with maiden name Hayden, and a very lengthy chart was found for her via World Family Tree (WFT henceforth), volume 5 [See that chart as Addendum A – useful for tracking the following lengthy and involved account.].   A birth record verifying her as daughter of William and Anna (Stetson) Hayden can be found in the Scituate VR, birthdate given as April 20, 1749; thus she would have been not quite 21 when she married Elijah Orcutt January 4, 1770, and unlikely at that age to have been previously married.  Verification for Prudence’s parents, together with confirmation for most of the chart’s connections, makes the chart a helpful guide.  Hence, it will be used as the outline for what follows (generation numbering has been added to the chart information in brackets).  

Prudence Hayden’s background:

Prudence’s background on her father’s Hayden side is found for only two generations, her father and grandfather, but her mother’s Stetson chart goes back for 7 generations, and allied families (Collamore and Chittenden especially) almost as far.   

Hayden:   Her father, William Hayden [2], is listed in the chart as born about 1724.   He married Anna Stetson May 18, 1744.  Anna was born June 2, 1724.  He died after 1744, and she also after 1744.   Another WFT source states William Hayden [2] was in service in the French and Indian War at St. John’s, 1759; if this second piece of information is accurate, then his death would have come after 1759. 

The children of William [2] and Anna Stetson Hayden, all listed with birthdates of WFT estimate 1740-1744 [! For 8 children??   Probably an error, but twins are involved, for the Scituate V.R. definitely says Prudence and Desire are twins born 4/20/1749; what intriguing names for twin daughters!]:   1.  William [3];   2.  Anna [3];  3.  Prudence [3]; 

4.  Desire [3];  5.  Tamerson [3];  6.  Ezra [3];  7.  Peleg [3];  8.  Elisha [3].  [Elisha and Ezra are indicated later as Rev., possibly also Peleg.  The Scituate V.R., besides Desire and Prudence, have Anna b. Sep. 2, 1746, Ezra b. May 17, 1754, Tameson b. Sept. 12, 1751,and William b. Nov. 9, 1744; Elisha and Peleg are not given, although children of Peleg and wife Rhoda are given.]

William Hayden [2]’s father is given in the chart as John Hayden [1], born about 1700.  He married Mary Vinal according to a WFT estimate between 1716-1748 (1723, according to Samuel Deane, see below).   He died WFT est. 1728-1791; she died WFT est. 1728-1794.

According to another important Scituate source, Samuel Deane’s History of Scituate, Massachusetts From Its First Settlement to 1831, published in 1831, p. 282:   “John Hayden came into Scituate from Hingham, 1720.  He married Mary Vinal 1723.  His sons were William, Ezekiel and Joseph.  William left sons William, Ezra, Peleg, and Elisha, and two daughters, viz. Anna, (wife of Abner Sutton, and the wife of Collier).  [Note that WFT chart above lists 4 sons and 4 daughters.  The four sons’ names are the same as Deane’s.] 

“Elisha married Deborah Pierce, his son Elisha is the sole survivor of the name in this town, except Elisha’s children” 

JOH thus far (3/2002) has been unable to find any Hingham record for John Hayden.  Deane on p. 346 states that Abner Sutton “married Ann Hayden 1776” and had sons Reuben and Seth.  This would be the eldest daughter, Anna, b. 9/2/1746 according to Scituate V.R.     
Prudence Hayden is not listed in Deane’s account as a daughter of William Hayden.   Seeking who may be “the wife of Collier” from Deane yields the following information (p. 241):  “Isaac Collier married Tamsen Hayden 1770 – children, Rev. William born 1771, sometime of Charlestown, Isaac 1773, James 1775, Moses 1777, Elizabeth 1779, Fanny 1782,  Peleg and Judith 1784, Anna 1786, Elisha 1788, Mary 1792, Cynthia 1794.  He lived on the beach, between the Barker farm and the glades.  He died 1817.”    Scituate V.R. spells her name “Tameson”; other sources call her “Tamerson.” 

Deane was apparently unaware of the twin daughters of William and Anna Stetson Hayden, Prudence and Desire.

 Stetson:   Prudence’s mother, Anna Stetson, will be given here the generation designation of 7, since the chart provides a full seven generations of Stetsons.  The Stetson family, very well known in the Scituate area, is thoroughly documented, with extensive stories given about the immigrant ancestor, Cornet (title) Robert Stetson [3].


According to the extensive chart Anna Stetson [7]’s parents were Anthony Stetson [6], b. September 12, 1693 in Scituate, married March 28, 1717 in Scituate Anna Smith [2] who was b. about 1693.  He died 1747 in Scituate, she died after August 18, 1741.

Prudence’s maternal grandmother Anna Smith [2]’s parents were Joseph Smith [1] b. about 1670, married Anna Hatch [2] WFT estimate between 1686-1718, she b. about 1670.   He died WFT estimate between 1697-1761, she between 1697-1764.  [JOH: figuring out WFT estimates sometimes creates headaches!]   Her father was Jeremiah Hatch [1], b. about 1650, married WFT estimate 1669-1698, and died 1712. 

Samuel Deane gives interesting information about Prudence’s gg grandfather, Jeremiah Hatch, together with his father, as follows:  “Jeremiah (son of Elder William) [see below], settled near his brother Walter, with whom he was engaged in ship building for many years.  He was often a deputy to Colony Court [i.e., Plymouth Colony], a surveyor, selectman, and in short a man of great usefulness.  He married Mary, daughter of John Hewes, “the Welshman,” and had fourteen children, born from 1658 to 1678.  His sons Jeremiah, John, Israel, Joseph, Thomas and James.  Jeremiah succeeded his father in his residence and his calling.  Several descendants are in Vermont.”  (Deane, p. 279)

Deane (p. 283) gives the following on Prudence’s Hewes ancestors:  “John Hewes, ‘the Welshman,’ was in Scituate 1632.  We trace him previously at Plymouth:  the name is sometimes written Hewghs.   He was freeman 1639.  His house was on Kent street, the second south of Meeting-house lane.  There are few notices of his family.  He was living 1673.  His daughter Mary married Jeremiah Hatch 1657.  His son John, who had been a freeholder, died 1661, leaving no family here.  John Hughs of Hingham, in 1664, who left sons John, Samuel, and others, may have been his son.   He died 1672.”

Deane gives the following about Jeremiah Hatch’s father (pp. 289f):

“Elder William Hatch [1] settled in Kent street 1634.  His house lot was the first south of Greenfield lane.  He was the first ruling elder of the second Church, 1643 [see information on that church, the same where most of William Orcutt [1]’s children were baptized, in the first chapter on Mary Martha Lane, p. 7; the minister would have been the Rev. William Witherell, first pastor of 2nd Church Scituate].  He was an active and useful man in the settlement of the Town.  His children probably were born in England.  His wife’s name was Jane.  Walter, his son, bore arms 1643, when he was, of course, over sixteen years of age.  He settled on a point of land north-east of Stoney cove, and south-east of the second Society’s Meeting-house.  He married Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Holbrook of Weymouth, 1650.  His children [besides Wm. Jr. and Jeremiah mentioned elsewhere by Deane] Hannah, born 1651, Samuel 1653, Jane 1655, Antipas 1658, Bethia 1661.  His posterity are in Marshfield.  Mr. Samuel Hatch of Scituate, near Stockbridge’s mill, is also his descendant….Elder Hatch died 1651…Jane, the widow of Elder Hatch, married Elder Thomas King, 1653.”  (p. 279)

 Back now to the Stetsons via the father of Prudence’s mother Anna Stetson [7], according to the extensive WFT chart.

Prudence’s maternal grandfather, Anthony Stetson [6] was b. September 12, 1693 in Scituate, married March 28, 1717 in Scituate, Anna Smith as given above.  He died 1747 in Scituate.  Their eleven children :   1.  Mary [7] b. Dec. 9, 1717;  2,  Isaac [7], b. Oct. 19, 1719;  3.  Joseph [7], b. Feb. 24, 1721/22;  4.  Anna [7], b. June 2, 1724;  5.  Charles, b. Oct. 17, 1726;  6.   Ezra [7], b. Sept. 22, 1729;  7.  Elisha [7], b. Jan. 28, 1730/31; 
8.  Thomas [7], b. April 22, 1734;  9.  Benjamin [7], b. July 7, 1736;  10.  Abiel [7], b. Oct. 23, 1738;  11.  Martha [7], b. Aug. 18, 1741.
Anthony Stetson [6]’s father was Robert Stetson [5], born December 9, 1670 in Scituate, married January 12, 1691/92 in Scituate Mary Collamore.  He died in 1760 in Hanover, MA; she was born 1667 in Scituate, died after September 3, 1710.  [Of the notable Collamore line, see much more, beginning on p. 13 below.] 

Prudence’s maternal Stetson great-great grandfather was Joseph Stetson [4], b. June 1639 in Scituate, married Prudence Clapp (b. about 1639 [see more, p. 13]) before 1670.  He died about 1724 in Scituate; she died WFT est. 1684-1734. 

The much-documented immigrant ancestor, Prudence’s g-g-g-grandfather was Cornet Robert Stetson [3], b. 1615 in Modbury, Devon, England.   [One Stetson internet writer specifies that Modbury neighbors Plymouth in South Hamms, commenting that it makes sense that Cornet Robert would have resurfaced in America as an early Plymouth settler.]  He married Honor Tucker on May 2, 1635, who was his second wife.  [First wife appears to have been Mary Hiland, Hyland, or Highland; however, the supposedly ten children are all with second wife, Honor Tucker.]  He died February 1, 1701/02 in Scitiuate.  Honor Tucker was born about 1612 in Plymouth, England, and died about 1682 in Scituate.   [According to composites of internet WFT charts, her father was John Tucker, b. about 1580, m. Urith Dennis 6 Feb. 1602 in St. Andrew’s Church in Plymouth, and died in England in 1626.  John Tucker’s father was also named John Tucker, b. 1554 in Devon, England.]

Robert Stetson [3]’s father was Thomas Stitson [2] [exact spelling], b. 1580, m. March 3, 1604/05 in Modbury, England Argent Lukesmore who was b. 1584 in Modbury; he died before 1643, she 16 May, 1643, in Plymouth, Devon, England. 

Thomas Stitson [2]’s father was John Stedson [1] [exact spelling], b. 1554, Modbury,
England, m. 1574 in Modbury, Anyes [some charts say Agnes, others correct it to Anyes] ___, b. 1558, died 24 Sept. 1622.

Information regarding immigrant Cornet Robert Stetson [3] follows (all bold-facing by JOH):


According to Samuel Deane (pp. 340-341):   “Cornet Robert Stetson received a grant of a considerable tract of land 1634, from the Colony Court, on the North River, which constituted his farm.  His house was on a beautiful plain near the river.  And unfailing and valuable spring, out of which eight generations of the family have been supplied, marks the spot.  ‘Cornet’s Rocks,’ in the river east of his farm, are well known to those who navigate the river.  He was possessed of considerable wealth, an enterprising and valuable man in the plantation, a deputy to Court, a Cornet of the first light horse corps raised in the Colony, a member of the Council of war, a Colony Commissioner for selling the patent line – in short, he lived long and left a good name at last.  He died Feb. 1st, 1702, aged 90.  His children were Joseph [4] born 1639, Benjamin 1641, Thomas 1643, Samuel 1646, John 1648, Eunice 1650, Lois 1651, Robert 1653, Timothy 1657.   These sons he was able to settle around him on his plantation. –Joseph left sons Joseph born 1667, Robert [5] 1670, William 1673, Samuel 1679….  Robert…had sons Anthony [6] 1693, Isaac 1696, William 1700, Gideon 1709, Robert 1710.   Anthony married Ann Smith [other sources say Anna Smith, as above] 1717, and was the father of Isaac, who first settled south of George Moore’s Pond, and of Charles and Ezra of Rochester, and of Elisha (born 1731), of Kingston and of Thomas of Barnstable.  Isaac, above named, was father of David, Esq. of Charleston.”  [Of the sons, Deane seems to leave out Joseph, Benjamin, Abiel, as well as their two daughters, Mary and Anna; see list p. 4.]
In an addendum following other Stetson listings, Deane adds the following for Robert Stetson [3]: 

In 1660, and several years subsequently, “Cornet Stetson was Commissioner to act for the country in all matters relating to the trade at Kennebec.”  Also, 1665, for his services he had granted to him ‘200 acres south of Mr. Hatherly’s grant, above Accord pond.”  Colony Record.   (Deane, p. 342.)

The reference to “Mr. Hatherly’s grant” can be amplified somewhat from the early history of Scituate found in Joseph Foster Merritt’s A Narrative History of South Scituate-Norwell, Massachusetts, 1938.  Since the general Scituate environs are the locale for the first seven generations of Orcutts as well as many generations of their wives’ families, a somewhat lengthy portion of Merritt’s first chapter on early settlement follows:

“The story of  South Scituate and Norwell in early times must necessarily be that of Scituate as well, for the Town of Scituate included, for many years, what is now the Towns of Norwell, Hanover, the “Two Mile” section of Marshfield and a bit of Rockland.

“The first white people came to town a little before 1628, but the town of Scituate was not incorporated until 1636. 


“They came in two ways, some from the settlements in and around Boston and some up the coast from the Pilgrim settlement at Plymouth, as the people of that town began to branch out and occupy the territory comprising Kingston, Duxbury, Marshfield and to the south, the towns of Barnstable county.  [JOH:  to this could be added Bridgewater to the west, settled by Miles Standish, John Alden and others from Plymouth/Duxbury.]

“A large company came in 1633, many of them being from Kent County, England.  Timothy Hatherly and the Conihasset Partners had a large grant of land which they controlled for some years, but it was finally incorporated in the town of Scituate.  [Since several of Prudence’s ancestors were included in the list of Conihasset Partners, see added information below, p. 7]

“In a very short time the settlers began to move back into the interior, into what is now Norwell, and gradually the country along the North River Valley was pretty generally settled.  For many years the river was the natural highway; there were no roads, only Indian paths, and it was much easier to get around in small boats and canoes, than it was to cut roads.  Added to this, the marsh lands were greatly prized for the grass that furnished forage for cattle and horses the settlers were able to keep.

“One of the early settlers in Norwell, was Cornet Robert Stetson, who came up the river and settled in the southerly part of the town.  He was a very prominent man in the military and civil life of those times, builder and owner of two mills, a cornet of horse (as the old English expression goes) in other words, commanding officer of a mounted troop, and a high official in the Plymouth Colony.  A good portion of the older families of the town can trace their descent from him.  His farm is now owned by the Stetson Kindred, and is used as a ‘Shrine’ where each year the Stetsons from all over the country gather to honor the memory of their celebrated ancestor.

“Using the river as the settlers did for transportation, it is quite natural that shipbuilding should follow.  The forests were filled with excellent ship timber and from almost the first, this industry sprang up that was destined to make the North River, a stream not over eighteen miles long and with an average width above Little’s Bridge of only about one hundred feet, known all over the world.  From the North River Bridge at Hanover to White’s Ferry near the mouth, wherever suitable locations were to be found, shipyards were established.  Over one thousand vessels were recorded as having been built here and that does not include the whole number….  Much of the wealth and early prosperity of the town was from the products of its shipyards….”  (Merritt, pp. 1-3)  [JOH:  Merritt lists families connected with the shipyards, including, among Prudence Hayden’s ancestors, Chittendens and Clapps – see below.  His book also includes photos taken of the Stetson Homestead, and of an ancient cradle used by the Stetson family.  See Attachment B.]

Another interesting source for Scituate history comes from a book titled Old Scituate, compiled and published in 1921 by the Chief Justice Cushing Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

This book gives further information about Timothy Hatherly and the Conihasset Partners, calling Hatherly the “Father of Scituate” (p. 6).  Deane tells us that Hatherly [one of the “Merchant Adventurers,” who financed the original Mayflower trip, and who came to Plymouth on the Ann in 1623, but returned to England in 1625] settled in the Scituate area soon after he returned to New England in 1632, and states (p. 6):  “We will now remark , that the Conihasset Grant was purchased by Mr Hatherly of the other Merchant Adventurers [earlier identified as Mr. James Shirley, Mr. John Beauchamp and Mr. Richard Andrews; together with Hatherly described as “of London” who had together been granted a large tract of land “between the brook at Scituate, on the N.W. side, and Conahassett”, pp. 4-5] before 1646: and that in this year, he divided it into 30 shares (reserving one fourth part of the whole) and sold it for 180 pounds to a certain company, since called the “Conihasset partners.”  Many of this company were such as had already located themselves upon those lands, and thus an amicable adjustment was made with those individuals.”  Included in the list of partners are Mr. Charles Chauncy who was minister of first church, Scituate; and, among Prudence’s ancestors, Thomas Chittenden and Ann Vinall [JOH:  a John Daman is also on the list of Conihasset partners; he is likely the ancestor of a later Orcutt wife, Esther Damon who married William 6 Orcutt.  Esther is listed as being from Hanover which later separated from Scituate, see following on Cornet Robert Stetson’s “Drinkwater” mill location].  These partners appointed their clerks, surveyors, committees and agents, and conducted their affairs with all the efficiency of a corporate town.  They laid out and maintained their own roads, until 1715; they made grants to their minister, &c…. Their records were kept of all transactions, conveyances, &c. in beautiful order, and fill a large volume.  Their last meeting on record was 1767.” 

The chapter in Old Scituate describing King Philip’s War as it affected Scituate, titled “Indian Raid of 1676” includes the following information of interest regarding Prudence’s ggg grandfather: 

“Hingham had been attacked on May 19th, several houses burned, and John Jacob, of Glad Tiding Plain, killed. The next morning they [the Indians] advanced over the old Massachusetts trail to that section of Hanover long known as “Drinkwater,” at that time a part of Scituate.   Here Cornet Robert Stetson had built a sawmill, antedating his other mill on the Third Herring Brook by several years.  The fury of the Indians was especially directed to the mills.  It may be because they were lovers of nature, and the destruction of the beautiful primeval forests, still used by them as hunting-grounds, although sold to the white men, was a source of resentment.  It can hardly be expected that they understood the meaning of a deed of conveyance, or conceived the fact that their fine hunting–grounds might disappear before the axes of the settlers; but they must have reasoned that the destruction of the mills meant that the advance of the English would be delayed. 

“After burning the mill at Drinkwater, they proceeded to destroy that other mill built by the Cornet on the Third Herring Brook.”  (Old Scituate, p. 10)


And another note regarding the Cornet’s activities at this time, p. 13:  “Cornet Stetson is said to have been constantly on horseback attending to various duties, and giving aid and council.” 

A sidenote from this same source, related to Prudence’s Chittenden ancestors which are listed below (p. 16):  her great-great-great grandfather Isaac Chittenden, a contemporary of Cornet Robert Stetson, was the only settler of Scituate killed by the Indians in 1676 (p. 12). 

Old Scituate devotes an entire chapter to Cornet Robert Stetson.  Since the source book is rarely found, it will be quoted in length here:
“Cornet Robert Stetson

“The career of Robert Stetson, of Scituate, the veteran “Cornet of the Troopers,” is one of the most unique in the annals of Plymouth Colony, and the elements of romantic adventure running through his whole life appeal to everyone.  In 1634, he made his appearance in Scituate, and soon after was granted a large tract of land on the banks of North River, where he built his rude home and reared his large family – but how and whence he came is still a mystery.  [JOH:  subsequent genealogical research has learned his background in Modbury, near Plymouth in England.]  So far as can be discovered, no other pioneer had established himself here at this early date, and it is believed that Robert Stetson was the first settler within the territory now known as Norwell.

“We are told that he “was only a Cornet,” that he “couldn’t even write his name.”  Now if this be true – and there seems to be no evidence that it is not – is it not remarkable that he should have been chosen repeatedly to represent Scituate, at that time the wealthiest and most populous town in the colony (Plymouth not excepted), as their deputy to the Colony Court, and always with, or alternately with, such men as Gen. Cudworth, Lieut. James Torrey, and John Cushing, who were among the best-educated men in Scituate, or in the colony?  Certain it is, that they shared the honor with the unlettered “Cornet of the Troopers” until he had served the town in this capacity for seventeen years – more than twice as long as any other deputy from Scituate.  As long as Cornet Stetson lived, he was – possibly with one exception – the only deputy chosen to represent at the Colony Court that part of Scituate now known as Norwell, Hanover, and the “Two Mile.” 

“We do not know that the Cornet was connected with any church previous to the establishment of the Second Church in Scituate, but Rev. Wm. Wetherell, its first minister, having been ordained the previous month, baptized on October 6, 1645, the Cornet’s three older sons [JOH:  this would have included Prudence’s ancestor Joseph Stetson,  eldest son of Cornet Robert.  The Rev. Wetherell – or Witherell – also baptized ten of William Orcutt 1’s twelve children in the same church a generation later].  From that day to this, there has been no time when a considerable number of the Cornet’s descendants were not prominently connected with this old church.


“Cornet Stetson served on Scituate’s first board of selectmen, and was continuously in the service of the town and colony.  In 1653, he was chosen “foreman of the jury” that laid out many of the earlier roads, among these the “Countrey Road,” from North River Bridge to Hingham, and the “Town Way,” through the “Four Corners” to the Harbor.  He was often employed by the colony in its dealings with the Indians, in the laying out of lands, and in the adjustment of perplexing situations.

“We find him on the Colony Records constantly serving on important commissions with Maj. Josias Winslow, Colony Treasurer Constant Southworth, Maj. Wm. Bradford, Gen. Cudworth, and others, but have only space to mention briefly some of the most important instances.  In 1655, Josias Winslow, Sr. (brother of Gov. Edward), Maj. Josias Winslow, Jr., Thomas Hinckley (later Governor), Mr. Wm. Clarke, and Cornet Stetson were appointed a committee “to regulate the disorders of the Gov’ment,” and to “treat and conclude about settling of the trad att Kennebecke which was much interrupted by reason of trouble amongst the Indians.”  Later, this committee met with the (then) “farmers of the trad,” i.e., “Gov’r Prence, Mistris Allice Bradford Sen’r (the Governor’s widow), Capt. Thomas Willet (a wealthy partner from Mass.), and Maj. Josias Winslow,” to settle these difficulties.  The next year (1660), Maj. Winslow, Capt. Thos. Southworth (Governor of Kennebecke Plantation), “The Treasurer,” Cornet Stetson, and Josias Winslow, Sr., were “empowered to act for the Countrey in all matters relating to the trad at Kennebecke.”  In 1663, “Cornet Studson” was appointed by the court “to accompany the treasurer in demanding and receiving the moneys due to the Countrey from the purchasers of Kennebecke,” and for his trouble in settling the affairs of the troublesome Kennebecke Plantation, the Cornet received 200 acres of land in Drinkwater.

“Previous to 1664, several unsuccessful attempts had been made to establish the boundary line between Plymouth Colony and Massachusetts Bay Colony.  This was permanently established in 1664 by a commission from Massachusetts Bay, and Maj. Josias Winslow (later Governor), Capt. Constant Southworth (Colony Treasurer), and Capt. Stetson of Plymouth Colony.

“In 1668, Cornet Stetson was commissioned by the Colony Court to purchase of Sachem Wampatucke (in his deed to the Cornet he takes his father’s name, and styles himself Josias Chicatagutt, Sachem of Matakeesett) a six-mile tract, called by the Indians “Nan-u-mack-e-uitt,” and afterwards known as the “Cornet’s Purchase.”  This was south of the Hatherly grant, and now forms a part of Hanover, Rockland, Whitman, and Hanson.  This locality is now known as Drinkwater.  Mr. Barry, in his “History of Hanover,” tells of the legend that the name Drinkwater was derived from the fact that no strong drink was used in raising the early mill, but we are fully convinced that Drinkwater is simply the literal translation of the Indian Name “Nanumackeuitt.”  Over seven hundred acres of this tract eventually became the property of Cornet Stetson.


“Inducements were early offered by the town of Scituate to anyone who would build a mill on the Third Herring Brook, and in 1656 the following was recorded in the Scituate Records:  “We whose names are underwritten doe testifye that we were with Robert Studson att worke the ninth of February, 1656, to provide Timber to build the sawmill that the said Robert Studson hath built.” 

“This record was signed with the marks of Josepth Wormall, John Hudson, and Josepth Bearstow.

“It is a fact not generally known, that at some time previous to January, 1674 – possibly as early as 1657 – Cornel Stetson also built a mill “at or near Indian Head River,” for the Colony Court Records show that in 1674 Cornet Stetson recovered 3 pounds 10 shillings from one Thomas Joy, of Hingham “for saying and repeating since January last past that the sawmill of Cornet Robert Studson, which standeth in Plymouth Collonie neare Scituate, standeth upon his, the said Joy’s land…whereby the said Studson comes to be greatly damnified.”  [JOH:  Hannah 3 Orcutt , daughter of John 2 Orcutt, brother to our Thomas 2 Orcutt, married Prince Joy 4, a widower of Hingham, Mass. on January 2, 1728 – see Helen Judson, Genealogy of John (2) Orcutt and His Descendants, p. 3; Prince Joy was a great-grandson of this Thomas Joy of the failed lawsuit against Cornet Robert Stetson, through his grandson Joseph 3, and son Joseph 2 Joy.]

[Fifty-four years later, in 1727, the town of Hanover was incorporated embracing the site of this Drinkwater mill.  Less than100 years after that, William 6 Orcutt married Esther Damon of Hanover, and both their children, Esther Rowena 7 and William Edwin 7 Orcutt were born in Hanover.  Hanover, it turns out, has many Orcutt connections -- even earlier than has been known previously!]

Continuing the Old Scituate chapter on Cornet Robert Stetson:

“This plant, known as “Drinkwater Mill,” was much more extensive than that on the Third Herring Brook, and the Cornet sold it in 1680 for “300 pounds currant silver money” to four enterprising colonists, viz., “Ralph Powel of Marshfield, planter, Chas. Stockbridge of Scituate, millwright, Isaac Barker of Duxborough, planter, and Robert Barker of Duxborough, planter.”  We have not space here for these deeds, but copies of the deed of Nanumackeuitt to Cornet Stetson by Wampatucke in 1668, Thomas Joy’s gift deed from Wampatuck in 1668, the verdict for the Cornet against Thos. Joy in 1674, and the Cornet’s deed of the mill to the freemen in 1680, may all be seen in “Stetson Kindred of America,” Vol. 5.  

“We have spoken of this mill at length, as we believe it of much importance in connection with the early history of Scituate and Hanover, and none of the local historians thus far seem to have had any definite knowledge of it.  We also believe its establishment previous to 1674 antedates by many years any other business enterprise within the present limits of Hanover.  [For any settlement in the colonies, one of the first

requirements for permanence is the prompt establishment of a sawmill and a gristmill, permitting the building of living and farming structures, and for utilizing grains produced by farming.  In Bridgewater, as noted in the chapter on Mary Martha Lane, Samuel Edson husband of Susannah Orcutt, built both types of mills, and was considered a key citizen.]

“In 1656, the Colony Court, realizing that the horsemen of the various towns should be organized for the protection of the colony, ordered raised a “troop of horse.” Gov. Bradford’s son William was made Captain, Gov. Prence’s son-in-law, John Freeman, was made Lieutenant, and Robert Stetson, Cornet.  This troop at once became the most valuable company in the colony.

“Many years afterward, before the breaking out of King Philip’s War, Major (afterwards Governor) Josiah Winslow, and Gov. Bradford’s two step-sons – i.e. Capt. Thomas Southworth and Colony Treasurer Constant Southworth – were chosen commissioners to visit Philip at Mt. Hope – “to beard the lion in his den,” and if possible turn him from his purpose of exterminating the colonists.  Cornel Stetson and the troopers were sent with this commission, and although the Cornet was well past his prime, evidently he still led the troopers.  The following, from the Colony Records, we believe to be the only official record of this expedition: 
  “To Captaine Southworth for his paines and time forty shillings.
  “To the treasurer respecting his long time and paines three pounds.
  “To Cornet Robert Studson his horse time and paines forty shillings.
  “Two shillings and sixpence a day is allowed unto the troopers to each of them that went on the abovesaid expedition, viz.; to each of them and his horse.”  (Col. Rec.)

“Although a Captain is supposed to outrank a Cornet, we note that the Cornet and Captain Southworth received the same compensation.

“Cornet Stetson was a member of the “Council of War” for a period of over twenty years, including King Philip’s War.  Rev. Samuel Deane, the historian, was ordained over the Second Church of Scituate more than one hundred years ago; he was a conscientious student of local history, and at a time when traditions were of much value, he wrote:  ‘During Philip’s War, the veteran Cornet Stetson was constantly on horseback, either in making voluntary expeditions with Gen. Cudworth (as tradition asserts) or in returning to encourage the garrisons at home, or in guiding the Council of War.’

“We well remember our youthful conception of Cornet Stetson, i.e. a valiant horseman mounting a fierce steed, a sort of knight errant who roamed the forest, seeking adventures with the Indians.  Of course we subsequently came to know that most of his dealings with the Indians were of a peaceful nature; nevertheless we can at least think of him as a sturdy horseman, for his home was a long way from his mills, the church, and the harbor, and his constant service as deputy to Plymouth, commissioner, and Cornet of the troopers, must have kept him constantly in the forest, often with no companion save his faithful horse.

“In 1847, Rev. John Stetson Barry wrote the “Records of the Stetson Family.”  A revised edition of this work is now in preparation, hence any extended account of the Cornet’s family is unnecessary.  His family consisted of seven boys and two girls, -- Joseph, Benjamin, Thomas, Samuel, John, Eunice, Lois, Robert, and Timothy.  Seven of these survived, married, settled near the old homestead, and reared large families.   We would like to tell of these children and their homes – of the part they took in the affairs of Scituate, of their many distinguished descendants in all parts of the country, who have a kindly interest in Scituate as the early home of their ancestors, but for lack of room this is impossible.

“The once prosperous settlement that surrounded the Cornet’s old home by the river has been gradually changing all these years, until now the locality is fast approaching the primeval state in which the Cornet found it, nearly three centuries ago.  To the north, evidences of the homestead of Sergt. Humphrey Johnson (1651) have entirely disappeared – the garden spot now grown a forest, the site, even, known only to the few.  To the south, where were the homes of Capt. Benjamin, and David Bryant, and ‘the shipyard at Bald Hill,’ nature again has full possession.  Following the uplands near the edge of the meadows, half a mile back from the nearest town way, much overgrown and hardly distinguishable, is the ancient road that connected these homesteads. 

“Nearly three hundred years have passed since Robert Stetson and Honor encamped on the banks of North River, and the name Stetson is now extinct in the towns of Norwell and Scituate; yet incredible though it seems, it is nevertheless true, as the vital records will demonstrate, that more than half of the inhabitants of Norwell, even today [1921], are descendants of this ancient couple.

“Cornet Stetson died in the year 1702-03, at the age of ninety years, having lived for sixty-eight years in Scituate, during which time he was unquestionably the leading citizen of the south part of Scituate, now known as Norwell; for it will be remembered that Mr. Hatherly, Gen. Cudworth, James Torrey, and John Cushing all lived in the north part of the town.

“A society of Cornet Stetson’s descendants, known as the “Stetson Kindred of America,” has been organized, with Francis Lynde Stetson, of New York City, as President, and the late John B. Stetson, of Philadelphia, as Vice-president.  These gentlemen purchased and presented to the organization the Cornet’s old homestead and forty-six acres of the original farm, although the original house was demolished more than one hundred and fifty years ago.  Here at the ‘shrine,’ the home of their ancestor, his descendants from all parts of the country meet annually, drink from the ‘Cornet’s spring,’ and spend a day on the spot where 283 years ago Robert Stetson first brought Honor, his wife, built his rude home, and laid the foundation of the Stetson family of America, and the town of South Scituate (now Norwell).”   (Old Scituate, pp. 15-22 published in 1921)


And now, to return to other branches of Prudence Hayden Orcutt’s ancestral family.  As stated on p. 4, her gg grandfather, Joseph Stetson [4], son of Cornet Robert Stetson [3], married Prudence Clapp before 1670.

Samuel Deane , pp 234f, gives the following background for Prudence Clapp:  “Mr. Thomas Clap was born in Dorchester, England, 1597.  He came to New England with the early settlers of Dorchester, where his brothers John, Richard and Ambrose tarried [possibly near William Lane, grandfather to Mary Martha Lane who married William 1 Orcutt].  Thomas proceeded to Weymouth, where his first son Thomas was born 1639.  He had grants of land in Hingham, 1637, but never resided there.  His farm in Weymouth was near the present residence of Hon. Christopher Webb.  He came to Scituate 1640.  We find no record of his children born here, but we learn from incidental records, that he had Eliezer, Samuel, Elizabeth, Prudence, John born 1658 and Abigail born 1659.  His farm in Scituate was on the south-west  of Stockbridge’s mill pond, and now owned [1899] by Calvin Jenkins, sen.  He was a Deacon of the first Church 1647 [this would have been the church 2nd Church Scituate separated from by 1642, largely over the issue of means of baptism; the 1st church minister was likely the Rev. Charles Chauncy who baptized by immersion].  He was an active, useful, and venerable man. 

“His son Thomas lived at Dedham, and is the ancestor (we believe) of the Claps of Walpole.  Eleazer lived at Barnstable, and left no family.  Elizabeth married Dea. Thomas King, (son of Elder King), 1669.  John died early, as did Abigail also.

“From Samuel descended the distinguished family of this name in this vicinity.  He succeeded to his father’s residence.  He married Hannah, the daughter of Thomas Gill of Hingham 1666.  His children were Samuel born 1667, Joseph 1668, Stephen 1670, Hannah 1673, Bethia 1675, John 1677, Abigail 1679, David 1684, Deborah 1686, Jane 1689.    [Deane goes on, p. 235 to trace to Samuel’s grandson from his son Stephen, Thomas Clapp who was President of Yale College, 1740-1765.]

The son of Joseph and Prudence Clapp Stetson, Robert Stetson [5] married Mary Collamore, which brings yet another interesting family into the picture.

According to a Stetson genealogist, Steve Phillips via his internet Stetson Message Board posting on GenForum dated 3/25/2001, Robert [5] lived near George Moore’s Pond in Scituate until 1719 when he purchased the Cornet’s old home from his father [Joseph 4] and moved there with his family.  On 12 Jan. 1692/93 when Robert was 21, he married Mary Collamore, daughter of Captain Anthony Collamore (ca. 1643-16 Dec. 1693) and Sarah Chittenden (25 Feb. 1646/47-25 Oct. 1703), in Scituate, MA.  Mary Collamore was born on 10 Nov. 1667 in Scituate, MA.  She died after 1710.  There are several variations in the spelling of her last name:  Callomer, Collinor, Callomar.  They had the following children:  Anthony (1693-1747), Jemima (1694), Isaac (ca 1700), William (1700), Amos (1703), Martha (1706-1738), Gideon (1709-), Robert (1710). 


Continuing with Steve Phillips’ work:  “By the way, Mary Collamore’s father, Captain Anthony Collamore, was an interesting guy.  Here’s what I know about him.  Anthony Collamore.  Born:  abt. 1643, Norham [Northam], England.  Mar. 14 Jun 1666 Scituate, Plymouth, MA, to Sarah Chittenden.  Died:  15 December, 1693 At Sea – Scituate Harbor.  Occupation:  Constable/Soldier/Ship’s Captain.

“Anthony Collamor was born in Norham [sic; Northam] England and came to Scituate in 1665 to make his home with his uncle, Peter Collamor who had arrived in 1639 [sic; see below, Charles Hatch book].  He married Sarah Chittenden of Scituate, the daughter of Isaac Chittenden, Jr., and Mary or Martha Vinal in Scituate on June 14, 1666.  He was declared a freeman May 29, 1670 and was a constable in 1671.  On July 4, 1684, he was commissioned as a captain of a Foot Company by William Phipps.  He was drowned when he was shipwrecked in a snow storm on rocks near the Scituate shore on December 15, 1693.  His body was recovered and he was buried in the First Parish Cemetary at Scituate Harbor.  The ledges are still called the Collamors.

“According to the book “Mayflower Descendants” (which, btw, he was not) his stone reads: 
  Or a mournful remembrance of the much to be Lamented
  Death of a worthy and pious
  Capt. Anthony Collamor
  who together with Five Persons were cast away in a
  sloop going from Scituate Harbor toward Boston
  on the 15th day of December, 1693.

“His children with Sarah Chittenden were born in Scituate:  1.  Daughter Collamor, 2.  Thomas Collamor,  3.  Anthony Collamor,  4.  Mary Collamor 1667 m. Robert Stetson,  5.  Sarah Collamor 1670 m. James Torrey,  6.  Peter Collamor b. 6 May 167_ d. 15 Nov. 1747 m. Abigail Davis 1671-1750,  7.  Sarah Collamor 1673-,  8.  John Collamor 1675-,  9.  Martha Collamor 1677-1699,  10.  Elizabeth Collamor b. 11 Dec. 1679, d. 18 Jan. 1758 m. Rev. Timothy Symmes;  2nd husband: Jeremiah Rose – President Benjamin Harrison descends from her and Rev. Timothy Symmes (Pres. Wm. Henry Harrison married their granddaughter, Anna Tuthill Symmes – Pres. Benj. Harrison was the grandson of Pres. W.H. Harrison),  11.  John Collamor 1681-.”

In a book written by Charles Hatch, printed in 1915, called Genealogy of the Descendants of Anthony Collamer of Scituate, Massachusetts, there is the following depiction of Peter, Anthony’s uncle, the first Collamore family pioneer (pp. 9f):  “Peter Collamore, the first settler in the Colony of Plymouth of that name, came from Northam, Devonshire County, England.  In what year and upon what vessel he came the records fail to state.  The earliest mention of him found, is in the year 1639, when for services rendered (probably military) he was awarded 25 acres of land at Namassacusett.  This land, which appears to have been west of Massachusetts Bay Path, near “Luddens Ford” at North

River, within the limits of what is now the town of Pembroke, was transferred by him to Ralph Chapman,…A Court of Assistants held at Plymouth Nov. 2, 1640, before Wm. Bradford, Thomas Prence, Miles Standish and others, granted to Peter Collymer xxv acres of land at Namassacusett….In 1643 he was on the list of those liable to bear arms in Scituate…. In 1647 he was chosen constable for the town of Marshfield…In 1650…surveyor of “Hieways” in Scituate, and was a constable for the town in 1651.  Situated a few rods westerly from his first habitation on Wills Island was Brooke Hall Farm on Belle House Neck, owned by Mr. Samuel Fuller [Mayflower passenger].  This farm was purchased in 1650 by Peter Collamore and was known for many years thereafter as “Collamore Place.”  It was located on the south side of the First Herring Brook, about one-half mile below the Stockbridge Mill, which was built in the year 1640, and stands as an ancient landmark at the present day [1915].  The poet Samuel Woodworth, in his song of the “Old Oaken Bucket”, refers to this locality when he speaks of 
“The wide-spreading pond and the mill which stood by it,
  The bridge, and the rock where the cataract fell.”

It is this land, the “Collamore Place” which was inherited by Peter’s nephew, Anthony Collamore.  Charles Hatch’s book gives the text of Peter Collamore’s deeds, as well as his letter to his brother in England, asking that he send over one of his sons to inherit, since Peter had no children of his own.  That son was, of course, Anthony Collamore. 

Charles Hatch gives additional information on Anthony Collamore, and significant variations in listing his children with Sarah Chittenden as follows (pp. 21-22):

“Anthony Collamore, b. ___: m. Sarah Chittenden of Scituate, June 14, 1666.   He died Dec. 16, 1693.  She died Oct. 225, 1703.  Issue.

I. Mary, b. Nov. 10, 1667; m. Robert Stetson of Scituate, Jan. 11, 1692 [JOH:  she was married the year before her father’s death by drowning; a side notation suggests she is the second child; hence following an infant who died]. 
II. Sarah, b. Mar. 26, 1670; died young. 
III. Peter, b. May 6, 1672; m. Abigail Davis of Roxborough, Nov. 8, 1694.   [JOH:  Peter is Anthony Collamore’s only surviving son, but many Collamores descend from him.]
IV. Sarah, b. July 12, 1673; m. James Torrey of Scituate, Apr. 20, 1710. 
V. John, b. Dec. 14, 1675; died young. 
VI. Martha, b. May 12, 1677; d. Aug. 21, 1699, unmarried. 
VII. Elizabeth, b. Dec. 11, 1679; m. 1st, Jeremiah Rose of Scituate, in 1698; m. 2nd, Timothy Symmes of Scituate [Hatch notes on p. 26 that “Benjamin H. Harrison, President of the United States, was a descendant of Elizabeth Collamore and her second husband, Timothy Symmes.”  Timothy Symmes is also mentioned by Deane, p. 94 in section for Scituate’s history of Education: 


“In 1725, Mr. Timothy Symmes was employed as a grammar schoolmaster.”]. 
VIII. John, b. June 11, 1682; died young. 
IX. Deborah, b. Mar. 14, 1682; died young. 
X. Thomas, b. Mar. 12, ___; died young.  
XI. Anthony, b. July 20, ___; died young. 
XII. A girl, b. ___; died young (the bible record has worn away).

“Biography.  Anthony  Collamore came from England to Scituate, Mass., in the year 1665 to make his home with his uncle Peter Collamore, whose property was to be his by inheritance.  The next year he married Sarah, daughter of Isaac and Martha (Vinall) Chittenden, Jr., of Kent street, Scituate.

“He was made a freeman in the Jurisdiction of New Plymouth, May 29, 1670.  He was a constable in Scituate in 1671.  In 1686 he was made a Lieutenant by Gov. Andros.  In 1692 he was commissioned as Captain of a Foot Company by William Phips…. (p. 23).  It was customary for the militia to meet at the Collamore homestead in readiness for expeditions against the Indians when occasions demanded.  Sometimes a bell was rung to warn the inhabitants in the town of the approach of savages; and the locality became known as Belle House Neck.”

The entire text of the memorial poem following the drowning of Capt. Anthony Collamore  by the Rev. Deodat Lawson (this had to have been done before Lawson absented himself so much from his ministry at 2nd Church Scituate that he was eventually dismissed), “Threnodia”, is printed in Hatch’s account (5 pages!  These JOH will relieve you from reading!).  A photo of what appears to be a plaque/monument of that poem is included on Hatch’s p. 29 – possibly to be found in the vicinity of Capt. Anthony Collamore’s grave on Meetinghouse Lane in Scituate, for any who care to check for it.

JOH:  Another Collamore/Orcutt connection occurred when Rhoda 5 Collamore, daughter of Benjamin 3 Collamor (Peter 2, Anthony 1), married Seth 4 Orcutt (Thomas 3, Thomas 2, William 1) Feb. 24, 1780 (FSO, p. 50).

Resuming Steve Phillips’ internet posting account:  “Sarah Chittenden [wife of Anthony 1 Collamore] was the granddaughter of Thomas Chittenden (through his son, Isaac and Mary Vinal.  Isaac Chittenden died fighting Indians in Scituate on May 20, 1676 during King Philip’s War [see above, p. 8]

“Here’s some info on Thomas Chittenden:  born 1584, Hawkhurst, Kent, England, married to Rebecca , died by 7 Oct. 1668; occupation:  linen weaver.

“Wife Rebecca was born about 1595 in Kent and died in Scituate.  He and his family sailed from Wapping on the Ship “Increase” in 1635.  On Feb. 1, 1638/39 he was declared a freeman.  In 1646 he was one of the Conihasset Partners.  He died before Oct.

7, 1668 when his will was probated.  Their children were:  1.  Isaac Chittenden c. 1621-1676, m. Mary Vinal c. 1625 [?? Age 4?; more likely, this refers to Martha Vinal(l), and they were married 1646];  2.  Henry Chittenden c. 1625-1713. 

“Departed London April 17, 1635 on the ship “Increase” (also called the “Encrease”).  He was a “lynnen wever” by trade.  He was listed as “Age 51” at the time.  His wife (Rebecca, age 40) and his two sons (Isak, age 10 and Henry, age 6) also came.”  [Ages don’t quite match birth dates above.]

Samuel Deane’s Scituate history, p. 232, gives the following information on Isaac Chittenden and his father Thomas: 

“Isaac Chittenden was one of the men of Kent.  His house lot assigned in 1633, was on Kent street.  He bore arms 1643.  He came with his father Thomas Chittenden, who was one of the Conihassett partners in 1646.  Thomas deceased in 1669, leaving legacies to his sons Isaac and Henry, and to Benjamin, son of Isaac.  (Footnote:  Thomas’s son Henry left a family, Joseph born 1656-7, also Susanna, Elizabeth and Ruth, and Joseph had a son Nathaniel born 1694, his grandfather Henry lived to a great age.  He died 1713, leaving legacies to “gr. son Nathaniel my Conhihassett  lands – to gr. daughter Mary Morton, Ruth Stetson and Alathea Chittenden 20 shillings each.  Daughter Elizabeth Executrix.”)

“Isaac, jr. [there are references in several sources to an Isaac, jr., although the dates seem to suggest this is Isaac, son of Thomas] married Martha [Mary in Steve Phillips’ account above], (daughter of widow Anna Vinall), 1646.    His children, Sarah and Rebecca born 1646, Mary 1648, Israel 1651, Stephen 1654, Elizabeth 1658, Isaac 1663.  Isaac jr. [sic, see above] was an active and useful man, often a deputy to Court.  He fell in repulsing the Indians from the Town 1676.”  [From Deane’s account, it is evident Sarah and Rebecca were twins.]

Deane gives the following account for Anna Vinal, p. 364f:   “Widow Anna Vinal with three children, appeared in Scituate 1636.  A record made by her son Stephen is extant, from which we quote “as I had the relation from my owne mother, I was born about the middle of Dec. 1630.  We came into New England in the year 1636, and into the  town of Scituate the same year.”  

“Martha was the eldest of the three children; she was married to Israel [should be Isaac] Chittenden 1646.  Stephen was born 1630, and John was two or three years younger.

“Anna, this enterprising widow, erected a house in 1637, on the brook, (north of Stockbridge’s mill pond, in later times).  She seems to have possessed considerable property.  Amongst the Conihassett partners in 1646, we notice Anna Vinal.  She deceased in 1664:  Stephen and John were administrators.  Colony Records.


“Stephen succeeded to his mother’s residence.  He married Mary, the daughter of Rev. Nicholas Baker 1661.  Children, Mary 1662, Stephen 1664, (died early) John 1667, Adam 1670, (died early) Hannah 1671, Stephen, jr. 1675, Gideon 1678, Samuel 1681, Mary 1684.

“John lived on the corner of Kent street and Meeting-house lane.  He married Elizabeth, daughter of Rev. Nicholas Baker 1664.  Children, John born 1665, Elizabeth 1667, Hannah 1669, Jacob 1670, Grace 1672, the wife of Ebenezer Mott 1700.”  [Deane goes on to list many grandchildren who remained in Scituate.] 

As is evident from all the above, ancestors of Prudence Hayden in Scituate are abundantly documented, probably more thoroughly (to date) than any of the other women who married the Orcutt men.   A part of the reason is that there are so many extensive historical sources for Scituate available in genealogical collections.  And more are currently being compiled and published. 

Prudence’s ancestors’ information is included in such detail also because both earlier and later Orcutt-related family members come from the area, including a sojourn for possibly nearly 20 years by William 1.  Light is shed on the early settlement and locations, as well as church, valid for them as well.  For descendants interested to see the locales of the early families’ homes, a visit to the broad Scituate area (Hanover, Hingham, Cohasset, Abington all nearby, and Bridgewater not very distant) would be valuable.  The quotes for locations of property given here may prove helpful.

Quite recently has been published The 17th Century Town Records of Scituate, Massachusetts, Volume One, 1977, Jeremy Dupertuis Bangs, under the auspices of the New England Historical and Genealogical Society, one among a number of their interesting current projects.  This work contains many, many references to virtually all of the above-depicted ancestors of Prudence Hayden Orcutt.  A map of the Scituate area printed in that book is of special interest in locating the sites mentioned, which is appended as Appendix C. 

Family of Elijah Orcutt and Prudence Hayden

(Source for family chart:   FSO.  Other sources as indicated.)

As described, Elijah 4 Orcutt and Prudence Hayden married in Scituate, intention dated January 4, 1770.  The church record for that intention in the Scituate V.R., interestingly, is C.R. 1, meaning First Church Scituate.  Possibly there had been a change back to first church by the time of William and Anna Stetson Hayden from the earlier Stetson involvement in the 2nd Church?   The minister of 1st Church at the time was the Rev. Ebenezer Grosvenor, whose ministry extended from 1762-1780 (at 2nd church then was

the Rev. David Barnes through the period 1754-1809).  Samuel Deane indicates that 1st church during Grosvenor’s ministry – one “not very quiet” (p. 187) -- was divided between moderate and stricter Calvinist groups, Grosvenor reflecting the moderate group.  “It is certain that he was not a zealot of Whitefield’s school, and hence they suspected him of Arminian heresy, but probably without foundation.  He was undoubtedly too mild and catholic in his faith and practice, to give universal satisfaction at that time.  It is said that his wife was much more vexed with the contradictions and oppositions which he met with, than Mr. Grosvenor himself, and was finally instrumental in decide ding his determination to retire.” (Ibid.)  

But the Scituate area was pertinent more to Prudence’s family of birth and ancestors, not her own mature life, for she and Elijah Orcutt lived in Abington where their nine children were born, and both died and were buried in Abington (sadly, JOH has not yet (4/2002) been able to obtain histories of Abington).  Their children were:

1. Mary 5 Orcutt (called Polly) b. Oct. 11, 1770.  Married Elijah Hobart Nov. 29, 1794 (V.R. Abington, MA)
2. David 5 Orcutt b. July 18, 1772.  Married 1st, Relief Burrell Oct. 27, 1795 (V.R. Abington, MA).   Married 2nd Mrs. Relief Faxon Nov. 11, 1811.  Married 3rd Elizabeth (Pratt) Perkins June 26, 1831 (V.R. Abington, MA).
3. Marcy 5 Orcutt b. March 4, 1775.  Married Eleazer Chubbock June 6, 1802 (V.R. Abington, MA).
4. Hannah 5 Orcutt b. April 22, 1777.  Married Jeremiah Chubbuck June 15, 1798 (V.R. Abington, MA).
5. Emerson 5 Orcutt b. Sept. 23, 1779.  Married Mehitable Vining March 10, 1804 (V.R. Abington, MA)  [See following chapter.]
6. Mehitable 5 Orcutt b. Sept. 29, 1785.
7. Elijah 5 Orcutt b.  1783 [likely 1788, per V.R. Abington; FSO states “record somewhat illegible but died young”], d. Mary 28, 1789.  (V.R. Abington, MA)
8. Elisha 5 Orcutt b. Feb. 22, 1788.  Married Mary Joy of Weymouth, Mass. June 3, 1810 (V.R. Abington, MA).  Married 2nd Sarah A. Richmond of Bridgewater, Mass. Aug. 27, 1834.
9. Jane 5 Orcutt b. Oct. 17, 1791.  Married Raymond Joel Reed (V.R. Abington, MA).

 From notes of FSO’s mother, Florence Pluma (Waters) Orcutt, “Elijah Orcutt served in War of Revolution as private in Capt Edward Cobb’s Company, Major Carey’s Regiment, which marched July 30, 1780, in the “Rhode Island Alarm”.  He marched from Abington, Mass., to Tiverton, R.I.  (see Mass. Soldiers, Sailors, Vol II, p. 662.)”.

In that preceding reference, Massachusetts Soldiers and Sailors of the Revolutionary War, 1903, II, pp. 660-1667, there are no less than 72 listings for Orcutt men, under the varied spellings of  “Orcott, Orcult, Orcut, and Orcutt”.     Furthermore, on p. 661 when the spelling becomes “Orcutt” the source also states:  “[This name also appears under the

form of Allcut, Ocutt, Olcut, Olcutt, Orcet, Orcett, Orchut, Orcott, Orcult, Orcut, Orket, Orkett, Orkut, Orlcott.]”   Some of these names may duplicate the same person, however.  Most appear to be from Massachusetts; a number are from Hampshire and Berkshire counties in western Massachusetts – these may include descendants of Thomas 2’s son Edward,  some are from Bridgewater, some Cohasset.  Other Massachusetts towns named from which Orcutt men came include, in eastern Massachusetts:  Weymouth, Scituate, Pembroke, Mansfield and Murrayfield.  From central Massachusetts:  New Salem, Shutesbury, Ware, Wilabraham, and from the western part of the state:  Cummington, Egremont , Whately and Warren (this Elisha Orcutt apparently received bounty to serve for another man, as did one other).  Forty-five of the 72 were privates; 9 had no rank given; 2 were Ensigns, 4 were corporals, one a sergeant, 1 a 2nd Lieutenant, then Lieutenant, 1 a Gunner’s Mate, 2 were Drummers (1 also became Drum Major), and one, a Stephen Orcutt, joined up in order to have his 6 months imprisonment sentence remitted!  He had been charged for setting fire to the Boston jail!  (p. 661)

The exact listing on page 662 for our Elijah Orcutt is as follows”

“ORCUTT, ELIJAH.  Private, Capt. Edward Cobb’s co., Maj. Eliphalet Cary’s regt.; marched July 30, 1780; discharged Aug. 1, 1780; service, 3 days; company marched from Abington to Tiverton, R.I., on an alarm.”  Tiverton, R.I. is five miles south of Fall River, Massachusetts.

However, there is another listing with different spelling for an earlier and somewhat longer expedition on page 660:

“ORCUT, ELIJAH.  Private.  Capt. Nathan Snow’s co., Col. Hawe’s regt.; enlisted Sept. 24, 1777; service, 1 mo. 9 days, at Rhode Island on a secret expedition.  Roll sworn to at Plymouth.” 

Given the sequence in dates, the second reference may also be to our Elijah, since it also involved going to Rhode Island.    JOH finds no other Elijah Orcutts of that generation (Elijah 4’s own son Elijah 5 died as a child; Elijah 5, son of Emerson, Jr., 4, son of Emerson 3 and Mary Gardiner Orcutt, wasn’t born until 1784 in Maine.) in the lines of Thomas 2 or John 2 Orcutt.   Someone with expertise and access to extensive resources on the Revolutionary War may be able to resolve this small question.   It appears that our Elijah may not have seen action in either expedition, although the circumstances for the alarm in Rhode Island were certainly dangerous.

It was noted in the previous chapter that Elijah’s father Emerson 3 Orcutt had purchased land from an Edward Cobb in 1766.  Perhaps Elijah 4 served under this man or his son during the 1780 alarm to Rhode Island?

If the 1777 notice is our Elijah, he was away just over four months after their 4th child, Hannah, had been born that April, and Prudence would have cared for the family and

household by herself, unless she had family assistance.  Their oldest daughter Mary was then 7, and oldest son David, 5.

Then in 1780, during Elijah’s 3-day march to Rhode Island the end of July, fifth child Emerson 5 was almost a year old.   Those must have been anxious days for Prudence and their young family.

According to the Abington V.R., Elijah 4 Orcutt died in Abington on December 1 or 2, 1821, aged 84 years.  His wife, Prudence Hayden Orcutt died eleven years later, on May 29, 1832, aged 83 years. 

Only one of their nine children died young, Elijah 5, who lived possibly for a year or less.  However, there is no indication of marriage for Mehitable 5, born Sept. 29, 1785, as there is for the other seven surviving children; perhaps she too died young though there are no Abington death records that would fit her.  The seven children who married all married in Abington.  Elisha 5 died in Abington.  David 5 appears to have gone for a time to Plainfield in western Massachusetts (his son Abial 6 was born there, as well as an infant daughter who died in 1810, the year David 5’s first wife Relief Burrell died).  However, his children with 2nd wife Relief Faxon, and 3rd wife Elizabeth (Pratt) Perkins are recorded as born in Abington.   A death record and location for David 5 has not yet been found.

Emerson 5 also married and may have died in Abington, though there is no record yet found (see following chapter).  His six children were all born in Abington.   Elisha 5 likewise seems to have married and had children in Abington.  His 2nd wife, Sarah A. Richmond was from Bridgewater, but they were married in Abington.  

A tracking has not yet been made for the daughters of Elijah 4 and Prudence Hayden Orcutt, but all four who married were married in Abington.  Thus it appears that their entire family of descent may all have remained in the Abington area.  For the line being tracked in these chapters, their descendants remained in the area until their great-grandson William Edwin 7 Orcutt moved as an adult to Austinburg, Ohio in the time of the American Civil War.

Prudence’s Era

On November 18, 1755, when Prudence was 6 (and her mother-in-law Mary Gardiner Orcutt 37) occurred the great earthquake which in Scituate knocked down chimneys and disjointed many houses, and probably had similar affects in neighboring areas.  Samuel Deane described the impact for Scituate:  “It happened at day dawn in the morning, and brought the people from their beds in dreadful consternation.  The rumbling of the earth, and the crashing of the falling walls, &c. was like the loudest thunder, and the commotion and roaring of the sea is described as no less terrible by those who lived near its margin.  Several water spouts bursted out in the Town; we can name particularly, one near the

book at Sweet swamp, on the border of Dea. Joseph Bailey’s garden.  It threw out a considerable quantity of reddish sand of a singular appearance, and the spring thus opened continues to run to the present time [1831].  Another fissure of considerable magnitude was made on the south side of ‘great swamp,’ so called.” (p. 150).

1749 to 1832, the lifetime of Prudence Hayden Orcutt, as for the earlier women who married Orcutt men and lived during some of those years, reflected a significant portion of the early history of the United States of America, much as recorded for Mary Gardiner in the previous chapter.  The major events from our perspective were of course the Revolutionary War and establishment of the U.S.A. and as described above, Prudence’s husband Elijah Orcutt participated in that war.

As for the establishment of the independent USA, Massachusetts was NOT unanimously in favor of the Constitution during its convention in January of 1788, when Prudence was 39 and Elijah 51.  “The Commonwealth was considered predominantly Antifederalist.  Citizens reared in the town-meeting tradition despised all delegated authority.  And the new Constitution was a government of representatives, some of whom (the senators) were to sit for six years – anathema to the democratic spirit, which looked on annual elections as the basis of liberty [and protection from the taxing authority of a central federal government].”  (Miracle at Philadelphia, Catherine Drinker Bower, p. 282)   Another issue in Massachusetts:  western farmers were primed for opposition to the “despotism” of Boston merchants.  (Ibid., p. 278)

Interestingly, however, Plymouth county was one showing a Federalist preference.  “Election of delegates to the [Massachusetts] convention had shown solid Federalist majorities in the coastal counties of Sussex, Essex, Plymouth and Barnstable.  The inland counties were Antifederalist, especially Worcester, also Hampshire and Berkshire to the west, where the skies had not yet cleared after Captain Shays and his little army of rebels.” (Bowen, p. 283)   On the final question the vote in Massachusetts was close:  168 noes to 187 ayes, a margin of only 19.  (Ibid., p. 290)

Did the turmoil of those controversies impact directly on the family of Elijah and Prudence Hayden Orcutt?  It is difficult to say, although they probably had some indirect effect.  Orcutts from the line of Elijah 4 who remained in the near eastern coast of Massachusetts until the mid-1800s appear mostly to have been what we think of as Republicans in the 1800s and 1900s, suggesting that their forebears may have been Federalists, just as the county of Plymouth appeared to be in 1788.  But there is no indication that these Orcutts were sufficiently involved in those events to have participated in the public debates.

Besides the continuing controversies interpreting the Constitution, other events of the era included that further conflict with Great Britain in the War of 1812 (Britain had been impressing American seamen and interfering with American trade), in which only more distant Orcutt relatives served, none from the Scituate/Abington area.  

The early stages of the slavery controversy were underway by the time of Prudence’s death.  Wealthy families in Scituate after 1700 sometimes had African slaves, and some had Native American servants prior to that time (Deane, p. 151, who says that “the posterity of that race [African] is now more numerous in this Town, than in any other town of the ancient Colony.”).    By 1704 blacks made up about 3-4% of the Boston population (Everyday Life in Early America, David Freeman Hawke, 1988, p. 169).  

Since no documents have yet (4/2002) come to light indicating the exact level of literacy for the family of Elijah and Prudence, we can only surmise what may have been their educational experience.  Women continued to be illiterate (but see important definition below that stipulates “literacy” applies in the colonial era to writing and not reading ability for both males and females  – indeed, the importance of being able to read God’s word directly from the Bible was prized by Protestants), but males eventually received some schooling.  Plymouth Colony had no school until the 1670s.  However, a qualification must be added here regarding colonial illiteracy:  calculations of “literacy” were made regarding the percentage of white male adults who could sign their wills; in 1660 it was 60%, rising to only 69% by the end of the 17th century.   One researcher states that these calculations are “faithful to what we can verify empirically, but probably wrong in emphasis.  All of the literature on early modern literacy seems to suggest that many more could read than write, that in some places, reading was near-universal for males and not less for females, while writing skills were less frequent.”  (Hawke, p. 71).   This definition should probably also be applied to the earlier Orcutts considered “illiterate” because they could not write their names:  William 1, William 2, Joseph 2.   Quite possibly, they all could read. 

Having been born in Scituate, settled home for multiple generations of her ancestors, it must have been good that her move with husband Elijah 4 to his family’s home territory of Abington was not a distant one from her family.  Family connections surely continued strong, and in fact were the prime locus for community from the colonial period.  “Family” came to embrace all blood relations, or kinfolk, in the neighborhood – and “neighborhood” meant an area reachable by horseback or canoe within a day, say, a radius of fifty miles (Hawke, p. 61). 

This Orcutt family’s continued sojourn in Abington for 3 more generations suggests a preference for happily and successfully grown roots planted there, too; a tendency to longevity.   Both Elijah and Prudence lived well into their eighties, an indication of robust good health, which seems to be something of a family trait, usually.   It must also have been a healthy environment.  We do not know Elijah’s profession, but the fact that his brother Emerson 4 bought land in Abington from their father Emerson 3 suggests that farming may not have been the primary source of Elijah’s family income (no will has yet been found for Emerson 3or Elijah 4, though one or both could exist in Plymouth County records).  However, most families then, whatever the father’s occupation, kept some livestock and maintained family gardens.   It may be worth noting here that Prudence and Elijah’s grandson was a bootmaker in the area, particularly in Hanover.

By Prudence’s era, when men became more focused on crafts rather than just on livelihood farming, women’s roles were again shifting back to the home.  Earlier, when all the family engaged entirely in farming, the women and older children were in the fields and caring for livestock right alongside the men, and were not limited to household chores, particularly at planting and harvest times.     

How were their children raised?  Again, David F. Hawke’s book provides insight, though focusing on the earlier colonial period.  “John Locke held that the children of plain people should begin useful work at the age of three.  The dictum of a philosopher, and a bachelor at that, should not be taken as the rule that guided early American parents.  There is reason to think that Dr. Spock would find much to approve in the way colonial children were reared.  In most homes the upbringing was strict and children were taught early about the horrible punishments that awaited in Hell for those who flouted parental authority, but it is too often forgotten that such strictness was laced with affection….”When I was a child,” one man recalled, “I was nurtured and tutored with such fatherly care and motherly affection as my parents at that time were endued with.”  Another man recalled his mother’s strict hand but also the “great love” she gave him (p. 67).

“Parents then as now tended to be more tolerant than they liked to admit.  Colonial children were initiated into the adult world early but not in a hasty or harsh manner.  From the age of three or so they were given chores, partly for discipline but also to keep them from underfoot.  Much of a child’s day passed with little supervision; parents and older siblings were too busy to mind what they did.  They trusted the children early with responsibilities that would horrify a modern parent.  John Adams was given a gun when only eight, just old enough to lift it, and alone, under no watchful adult eye, he spent hours, day after day, in the marshes bringing down birds, or trying to.”  (Ibid.)

JOH recalls a childhood in rural Montana in the 1930s-40s with similar freedom and parental trust – for a girl as well as a boy – which, compared to her eastern U.S. urban life of active grandparenting in 2002, seems utterly unthinkable and amazing!  To be sure, strong values, a sense of responsibility, and a range of skills for coping with dangerous situations had already begun to be carefully instilled.  Even so, my own children as well as my grandchildren were/are raised far more protectively. 

“The colonial child moved toward adulthood in a fairly straight line, with no pause for the miseries of adolescence.  That phase, except in its physical manifestations, did not exist then, and the word itself did not achieve general use until the twentieth century.” (Hawke, p. 67) 

(Compiled by Judy Orcutt Holy)

Mehitable Vining

Emerson (5) Orcutt, fifth generation of Orcutts in New England, is to be kept distinguished from his grandfather Emerson (3) Orcutt.  Emerson 5 married Mehitable Vining on March 10, 1804 in Abington, Massachusetts (FSO, p. 62, citing Abington V.R.).

Among their six children (one of whom died before 1 year of age) begins somewhat new naming patterns.  To begin with, as with Prudence Hayden of the prior chapter, little could be found for Mehitable Vining’s family of origin.  The difficulty in Mehitable’s case is due to the fact that almost no records for their home town of Abington are available in genealogical libraries, in contrast to the towns of Scituate, Hingham/Cohasset, the Bridgewaters.  (The same circumstance occurs also for the following two wives, as well:  Esther Damon, married William 6 Orcutt, and Dora Cook, married William Edwin 7 Orcutt.  Although the family names for all three women, Vining, Damon, and Cook, occur frequently in early southeastern Massachusetts history, the difficulty is to find the direct family links to prior generations of each family in the Abington area in order to document each wife’s family line.)

However, naming patterns can provide clues, and this does continue to occur with the oldest son of Emerson 5 and Mehitable Vining Orcutt:  Elisha Vining (6) Orcutt.  Although the given name “Elisha” occurs as a son of Elijah 4 and Prudence Hayden Orcutt, it seems quite probable that Mehitable’s father’s name was Elisha Vining. 

Mehitable Vining’s background:

Again, as with Prudence Hayden, a World Family Tree (WFT) record provided a clue leading to the Weymouth area [in the following, as before, generations are added by JOH in brackets]:  A Mehitable Vining [6], born 1783 [no location given], father given as Elisha Vining, born 1714 in Weymouth, Massachusetts [however it is more likely that Elisha, Jr. [5] was Mehitable’s father, since the dates strongly suggest another intervening generation.  Corroboration for this supposition comes from a marriage record in Abington for Elisha Vining, Jr. [5] m. Deborah Fullington, May 2, 1764 (Early Massachusetts Marriages, edited by Rev. Frederick W. Bailey, 1897-1914, reprinted 1968, vol. 2:152); further corroboration comes from the Vining website by Karolyn Roberts at http://members.surfbest.net/krob/Vining.htm -- she gives the following information:  RV172 Elisha Vining b. 1714 Weymouth, Norfolk, MA.  d. 1799 MA (The Vining Families, Chap. 3) m. 12/3/1741 Hingham, MA Mary Leavitt (dau. Israel Leavitt and Mary Bates) b. 6/24/1722, Hingham;  RV1721 Elisha Vining, Jr.  (Hist. of Weymouth, Chamberlain) b. 1742 Abington, Plymouth, MA – d. 3/11/1822 MA (Ancestral Records) m. 5/2/1764 Abington, Plymouth, MA Deborah Fullington (Early

MA Marriages of Plymouth Co.) b. MA – d. 12/21/1822 MA.  Elisha of Abington, Private, Capt. Edward Cobb’s Co. of Militia, Col. Edward Mitchell’s Regiment which marched April 20, 1775 in response to the alarm of April 19, 1775 from Abington and Bridgewater to Marshfield; service:  3 days.  (Prominent American Descendants of Dorothea Vining Barnes);   RV17211 Deborah Vining b. 8/7/1766 Abington, Plymouth, MA (VR of Abington) – d. MA (Ancestral Records);  RV172111 Laura Vining b. 8/28/1802 Abington, Plymouth, MA  (VR of Abington)].  

Note by JOH:  It is worth pointing out here that Elijah 4 Orcutt also served in Capt. Edward Cobb’s Co. over five years later during a 3-day service from July 30, 1780 to August 1, 1780.  See Chapter Four of this series (on Prudence Hayden), p. 20.  So Emerson 5’s father served in the same company as did his wife’s father, Elisha Vining 5.  See also the note that Elijah 4 Orcutt’s father Emerson 3 had purchased land from an Edward Cobb in 1766, same source/page.   

Elisha Vining 4’s father is given in the WFT as George Vining [3], born 1679 in Weymouth, died 27 Mar. 1723 in Weymouth; m. Hannah Judkins, birthdate and place unknown according to this record died 14 Apr. 1720 in Weymouth.  However, in her Vining family chart posted on the Internet (http://viningfamily.com) Joan Vining McGovern states that “257.Hannah Judkins was born on 14 Feb. 1676 in Boston, Suffolk, Ma.  She died on 17 Feb. 1774 in Weymouth, Norfolk, Ma.”

This WFT Vining chart can be corroborated in George Walter Chamberlain’s Genealogies of the Early Families of Weymouth, Massachusetts, republished in 1984, additionally giving George Vining 3’s father as John Vining [2] who was apparently the Vining immigrant ancestor. 

Chamberlain’s entire account up to Elisha Vining [4] follows:

“JOHN VINING [2] had five acres of land granted to him by the selectmen of Weymouth, 14 Dec. 1663, in the First Division, and fifteen acres in the Second Division.  (Weymouth Land Grants, 282, 283.)  He or his son of the same name was made a freeman of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, 23 May, 1666 [JOH:  note that these records come, not from Plymouth Colony territory as for the prior four Orcutt wives’ families, but from the Massachusetts Bay Colony; Weymouth was then in Suffolk County].  There is a statement in the Register, 8:162, that he came in 1652 [JOH:  if as some records suggest, William 1 Orcutt arrived in Weymouth in 1660, he would have followed John Vining by around 8 years; would that someone had documented WO’s arrival, as the following account does for John Vining!].   Hilliard Veren, clerk of court at Salem certified under oath that he understood that John Vining from [Wincanton in Somersetshire] “came abord of Mr. Stratton’s ship” with others, sworn to 27 June, 1682.  (Essex Deeds, B.6, p. 168.)  He died at Weymouth, Feb. 1685.  He married (1) at Weymouth, 11 May, 1657, Margaret Read, daughter of William and Avis Read, baptized at Long Sutton, Somersetshire, 20 Jan. 1635-36; she died at Weymouth 6 July, 1659.  He

married (2) at Weymouth, 22 Jan. 1659-60, Mary Reed, daughter of Philip and Mary Reed of Weymouth, John Vining was one of the appraizers of the estate of Margaret Snooke of Weymouth, widow of James Snooke, 9 May, 1660.  (Register, 9:338.)  She died at Weymouth, 2 Sept. 1717.   “Being weak of body” he made his will 18 Jan. 1685, proved 17 Feb. 1685, in which he mentions his eldest son John to have the new house which I have lately built, his wife Mary, son George under 21, son Samuel likewise under 21, four daughters, Jane, Sarah, Hannah and Margaret, to each 15 pounds at the age of 20, youngest son Benjamin, wife executrix.  Overseers, my friend Capt. John Holbrook and my kinsman Joseph Dyer. [JOH: probably closed quotes should follow Dyer’s name, concluding the direct quote of John Vining [2]’s will.]  (Suffolk Probate Records, 6:516.)  Inventory, taken 8 Feb. 1685, valued at 468 pounds, 19 shillings [JOH:  a sizeable estate in those days!] (Ibid. 9:259.) John Vining [2], son of Robert Vining [1], was baptized at Wincanton, Somersetshire, 17 Apr. 1636.  (Register, 66:188.)  [JOH:  An internet Vining researcher describes Robert Vining as “Owner of the White Horse Inn, Wincanton, England; another says he was born 1610.  Joan Vining McGovern’s internet site given above also lists Robert Vining as father to John Vining:  “1024 Robert Vining was b. in Wincanton, Somerset, Eng.  He married Mary (Vining); she died on 19 Apr. 1672.”] 
  Children by second wife [i.e. Mary Reed], born at Weymouth: 
John 2 [JOH:  3 for our purposes, grandfather Robert being counted as 1], b. 15
   Apr.  1662.
Mary [3], b. 18 June, 1664.
Thomas [3], b. 30 Oct. 1667.
Samuel [3], b. 2 Feb. 1669-70.
Jane [3], b. 7 July, 1672; m. 1692, Jacob Turner
Margaret [3], b. 19 Mar. 1682
Benjamin [3], b. 22 July, 1684.
Sarah [3], b. perhaps 1675; m. 19 Nov. 1700, Nicholas Whitman of Bridgewater.
George [3], b. perhaps 1679.
Hannah, alive 18 Jan. 1685.  [JOH: as mentioned in JV’s will above.]”

Chamberlain reports that John [3] Vining [great-uncle to our Mehitable], whom he calls John Vining, Jr., lived and died in Weymouth, leaving son John and daughter Mary who married Ephraim Richards of Weymouth.

Likewise, Samuel [3] Vining married Sarah ___ and “removed to Enfield before 1717.”

It is worth noting in the context of John Vining [2]’s will the reference to “my kinsman Joseph Dyer” as one of the two overseers to the carrying out of John Vining [2]’s will as well as a witness to the will.  This Joseph Dyer appears to have been the son of Deacon Thomas Dyer who settled in Weymouth before 1641 and whose first wife appears to have been Agnes Reed.  According to Chamberlain, “Philip Reed of Weymouth, in his will dated 15 Dec. 1674, called Thomas Dyer his beloved brother.  They may have had one mother, or married sister, or Reed may have married Dyer’s sister, or Dyer may have married Reed’s sister; in any case they would call each other brothers.”  (Chamberlain, p.

209.)  Phillip Reed, of course, was John Vining’s father-in-law.  Another aspect:  according to Joan Vining McGovern, Phillip Reed married Mary Dyer on 26 Oct. 1635 in Long Sutton, Somerset, England; Mary died in Weymouth, Ma. 
Next, Chamberlain records the following for Mehitable’s great-grandfather:

“GEORGE [3] VINING was born at Weymouth, near 1679; died there 27 Mar. 1723.  He married at Weymouth, 10 Oct. 1700, Hannah Judkins [4] who was probably the Hannah Vining who died at Weymouth, 14 Apr. 1720.  [JOH:  Joan Vining McGovern’s listing for Hannah Judkins Vining states in contrast that she died 17 Feb. 1774 in Weymouth.]
  Children, born at Weymouth:
   Thomas [4], b. 14 Sept. 1703.
   Elisha [4], b. near 1714.
   George [4], b. ____.”

According to Joan Vining McGovern, Hannah Judkins [4]’s father was “Samuel Judkins [3] who was born on 27 Nov. 1638 in Boston, Suffolk, Ma.  He died on 22 Feb. 1676 in Hingham, Ma. [JOH:  another chart states that Samuel Judkins died 22 Feb.1675/76  in Medfield, Norfolk, Ma.] He married Elizabeth Leavitt [2] on 23 Mar. 1667  in Hingham, Ma.  Elizabeth Leavitt was b. on 28 Apr. 1644 in Hingham, Ma.  She died 4 Feb. 1689.  Her father was Dea. John Leavitt [1] b. 1608 [abt. 1602] in Beverly, Norfolk, Eng.  who d. 20 Nov. 1691 in Hingham, Plymouth, Ma.  He m. Mary Lovett [or Levett/Leavitt/Lovit] who was b. 1617 [1615] in Plymouth, Devonshire.  She d. 6 Dec. [4 Jul] 1646 in Hingham, Plymouth [Suffolk], Ma.

An additional chart carries the Judkins’ Leavitt line further back.  John Leavitt [1]’s father was Percival Levett or Leavit, b. 1580 in Beverly, Yorkshire, England, d. 16 Dec. 1646/47; he m. Margaret Linkley in 1607; she b. 1589 in Beverly, Yorkshire, England.   Percival Leavitt’s father was also named Percival Levett (Leavitt), b. 1560 in Yorkshire, England, d. 1625 in York, Yorkshire, England; in 1580 he m. Elizabeth Rotherforth who was b. 1561 in Yorkshire, England.  The first Percival Levett (Leavitt)’s father was William Levett, b. abt. 1528 of Harewood, West Riding, Yorkshire, England, and d. 6 Jul. 1569, having m. 1553 Joan Ynglande (Yuglande) of Harewood, West  Riding, Yorkshire, England.  She d. 6 Jul, 1569.  William Levett’s father was Richard Levett (Leavitt), b. 1506 in Appleton, Yorkshire, England and d. Feb. 1567 there.  He m. in 1529 Mrs. Ellen Levitt who was b. 1508 in Appleton, Yorkshire, England.   Richard Levett (Leavitt)’s father was John Levett, b. 1474 in Bolton Percy, Yorkshire, England, and d. 1526 in the same place, having m. Agnes ____, b. abt. 1478 in the same place.  John Levett’s father was William Levett, b. 1448 in Bolton Percy, Yorkshire, England; he m. Constanlis Wickersly who was b. 1450 in Bolton Percy, Yorkshire, England.

Returning to the Judkins line as recorded by Chamberlain, Mehitable’s great grandfather Samuel Judkins [3]’s father Job Judkins [2] was born in 1606 in West Glasgow, Lanark,

Scotland.  He died on 6 Nov. 1672 in Boston, Suffolk, Ma.  He m. Sarah Dudley (who according to the second chart was b. in 1608 in Scotland, m. 1628, and died  26 Nov. 1657 in Boston, Suffolk, Ma.)   Her father Thomas Dudley was b. abt. 1575 in Northhamptonshire, Eng.  He d. on 31 Jul. 1653 in Roxbury, Suffolk, Ma., having m. Dorothy York on 25 April 1603 in England; she d. 27 Dec. 1643 in Roxbury, Ma.

Job Judkins’ [2] father was Joel Judkins or Judson [1] b. on 9 Aug. 1579 in Scotland.  He died before 1606 in Scotland.”  (The second chart says that Joel Judkins d. 1657, and was married before 1606 in Scotland.  His unnamed wife was b. abt. 1582 in Glasgow, Lanark, Scotland.  The second chart also supplies Joel Judkins’ father as Samuel Judkins, b. 10 May 1556  in Scotland, who m. before 1579 his unnamed wife who was b. about 1560 in Glasgow, Lanark, Scotland.)

According to Karolyn Roberts’ Vining website cited above, the grandparents of Mehitable Vining Orcutt would have been Elisha Vining [4], b. 1714 in Weymouth; he died in 1799 in Massachusetts, having married on 12/3/1741 in Hingham Mary Leavitt [10] (daughter of Israel Leavitt [9] and Mary Bates [5]), b. 6/24/1722 in Hingham.  (The second chart gives a lengthy ancestry for Mary Leavitt, of some interest because after Mary Leavitt’s great grandfather Israel Leavitt, it parallels exactly the Leavitt chart for Mehitable’s great grandmother Hannah Judkins’ Leavitt ancestry for her mother, Elizabeth Leavitt who m. Samuel Judkins [3] – see above.  Hence, Mehitable’s great-great grandmother on her father’s father’s side Elizabeth Leavitt, and her grandmother Mary Leavitt’s grandfather (i.e. Mehitable’s great-great grandfather on her father’s mother’s side), Israel Leavitt [8] were brother and sister.   [WHEW!!]   To trace that latter side:  Mary Leavitt [10]’s father Israel Leavitt [9] was b. 1 Aug. 1680 in Hingham, died there 30 May 1757, and m. 18 Oct. 1716 in Hingham Mary Bates [5 – see below], who was b. 26 May, 1693 in Hingham and d. 29 Feb. 1768 in Hingham.  Israel Leavitt [9]’s father was also named Israel Leavitt [8], b. 23 Apr. 1648 in Hingham and d. 26 Dec. 1696 in Hingham, having m. 10 Jan. 1676 in Plymouth, Ma. Lydia Jackson, who was b. 29 Nov. 1658 in Plymouth, and died before 1699 in Ma.  Israel Leavitt [8]’s father was John Leavitt [7] b. about 1602 in Norfolk, England, m. 16 Dec. 1646 in Hingham, Mass. Sarah Gilman. [JOH note:  discrepancy here for the Judkins chart, which gives Mary Levett (Leavitt, Lovit) as having m. this John Leavitt 16 Dec. 1646 in Hingham.]   John Leavitt [7]’s father was Percival Levett or Leavit [6] b. 1580 in Beverly, Yorkshire, England, d. 16 Dec. 1646/47 in Hingham, Suffolk, Mass., having m. probably in Beverly, Yorkshire, England in 1607 Margaret Linkley who was b. 1589 in Beverly, Yorkshire, England.   Percival Levett or Leavit [6]’s father was also named Percival Levett (Leavitt) [5], b. 1560 in Yorkshire, England, d. 1625 in York, England, having m. 1580 in Yorkshire, England Elizabeth Rotherforth who was b. 1561 in Yorkshire, England.  Percival Levett (Leavitt) [5]’s father was William Levett [4], b. abt. 1528 in Harewood, West Riding, Yorkshire, England and d. 6 Jul. 1569, having m. in 1553 in York, Joan Yngland (Yuglande), b. 1532 in Harewood, West Riding, Yorkshire, England, d. 6 Jul. 1569 in York, England.  William Levett [4]’s father was Richard Levett (Leavitt) [3], b.1506 in Appleton, Yorkshire, Eng., d. Feb. 1567 in the same place, having m. 1529 in

Appleton Ellen ____ who was b. 1508 in Appleton.  Richard Levett (Leavitt) [3]’s father was John Levett [2], b. 1474 in Bolton Percy, Yorkshire, England, and d. 1526 in the same place, having m. Agnes ____, b. abt. 1478 in Bolton Percy also.  John Levett [2]’s father was William Levett [1], b. 1448 in Bolton Percy, Yorkshire, England who m. Constanlis Wikersley who was b. 1450 in Bolton Percy also.) 

Another Orcutt family connection for Mehitable comes through her great grandmother Mary Bates [5] who was married to Israel Leavitt [9].  Mary Bates [5]’s great grandfather George Lane was uncle to Mary Martha Lane who married William Orcutt [1].  The relationship is as follows:  Mary Bates [5]’s father was Caleb Bates, b. 30 Mar 1666 in Hingham, d. 15 Aug. 1747 in Hingham, having married 15 Apr. 1691 Mary Lane [4], b. 26 Sep. 1671, d. 9 Oct. 1751 still in Hingham.  Mary Lane [4]’s father was Josiah Lane [3], b. 23 May 1641 in Hingham, d. 26 Mar. 1714 in Hingham, having m. 9 May 1672 in Hingham Deborah Gill who was b. 8 May, 1653 in Hingham, and d. 16 Apr. 1727.  Josiah Lane [3]’s father was the before-mentioned George Lane [2], uncle to Mary Martha  Lane who married William Orcutt [1].   George Lane [2] was b. 1612 probably in Norfolk county, England; he d. 11 June, 1689 in Hingham, Mass., having m. in 1635 in Hingham Sarah Harris who d. 26 Mar. 1694 in Hingham.  George Lane [2]’s father was William Lane [1], b. 1580 probably in Norfolk County, England, and d. 6 Jul. 1654 in Dorchester, Suffolk, Mass.  He m. before 1612 in England, Agnes ____, who was b. 1584, probably in Norfolk County, England.  This second chart says she d. 3 April 1671, but this is likely in error, since there is no mention of a wife in William Lane’s will nor mention of a wife from the time of William Lane’s 1635 arrival in Massachusetts – see chapter One, page 2 where the Lane Genealogies by Fitts considers William Lane’s wife was Agnes Farnsworth, possibly a second wife.)

The next generation following Elisha 4 Vining, then, would be Mehitable’s parents, Elisha Vining Jr. [5].  According to Karolyn Roberts, he was born in 1742 in Abington, Plymouth, MA, and died 3/11/1822 in MA (Ancestral Records).  He married Deborah Fullington on May 2, 1764 in Abington, who was born in Massachusetts and died 12/21/1822 in MA. (Early MA Marriages of Plymouth Co.) 

As of this date, 7/2002, no further information has yet been found regarding Mehitable’s mother, Deborah Fullington.  But note the Revolutionary War record for her father, Elisha Vining Jr. [5] on p. 2 above.

It may be of interest to note what may be known of some other relatives, so information from Chamberlain for Mehitable’s great-uncle Thomas [4] also follows, since nothing further was given there for either Elisha [4] or for George [3]:

“Thomas [4] Vining (George, John) was born at Weymouth, 14 Sept. 1703; married at Weymouth, 25 July, 1727, Hannah Randall, daughter of John and Susanna (Benson) Randall of Weymouth.  [JOH:  Another Orcutt family connection here:  Hannah is


niece to Elizabeth Randall, b. about 1679, who married Benjamin 2 Orcutt about 1705 in Weymouth.  Elizabeth Randall Orcutt was a younger sister to John Randall, Hannah’s father.]  Hannah Randall was born in Weymouth 4 Jan. 1708. 
  Children, born at Weymouth:
   Susanna [5], b. 9 July 7 1728.
   Josiah, b. 8 Dec. 1729.
   Hannah, b. 10 Nov. 1731.
   Mercy, b. 5 Apr. 1734.
   John Randall, b. 4 July, 1736
   Benjamin, b. 16 Nov. 1738.
   Sarah, b. 9 Nov. 1741.
   Jonah, b. 17 Mar. 1744.
   Elizabeth, b. 21 Sept. 1746.”

The Vining family move from Weymouth to Abington appears to have occurred directly after the 1741 marriage of Mehitable’s grandfather Elisha [4] and grandmother Mary Leavitt Vining, since her father Elisha [5] Vining was born in Abington in 1742.  The distance is actually negligible:  some writers even refer to Abington as “south Weymouth.”   On a current map, Weymouth center is located about nine miles northwest of Abington center.  North Abington is two miles closer. 

But there is a difference in counties.  Although Norfolk County was established in Massachusetts in 1643, it was abolished in 1680.  Then in 1793 it was again established as separate from Suffolk County.    The township of Abington became separated from Bridgewater in 1712; in 1727 a part of Abington became Hanover; in 1874, a part of Abington became Rockland; and in 1875 a part of Abington became South Abington.  (The town of Hanson – see Dora Cook chapter 7 – came from Pembroke and was defined in 1820.)   

[Further note:  In Chamberlain’s Weymouth book regarding the Vinings, p. 714, notes of the marriages are from Norfolk Probate Records, beginning around 1868.]

Family of Emerson Orcutt  and Mehitable Vining

(Source for family cart:  FSO.  Other sources as indicated.)

As described on page 1, Emerson [5] Orcutt and Mehitable Vining were married March 10, 1804 in Abington, Massachusetts.  If her birthdate is correct as 1783, she was then 21, while her husband was 25.  Both appear to have been born and lived their entire lives in Abington, indeed as second full generations in both their respective birth families to do so.   Several of their five surviving children remained in the Abington area as well, but the youngest was  first of this Orcutt line to leave Massachusetts entirely.


Of their six children, five boys and one girl all born in Abington, only the daughter did not survive childhood.  So Emerson and Mehitable (was she nicknamed “Hittie” as were others by that given name?) raised five sons to adulthood, with the eldest, Elisha Vining, fourteen years older than the youngest, Oran.

Elisha Vining [6] Orcutt was born March 17, 1805.  He married Ruth J. Damon of Weymouth, Mass. Nov. 28, 1826.
Emerson [6] Orcutt was born April 14, 1806.  He married first Sarah Leach Sept. 11, 1831; second, Adaline (Beal) Novel Sept. 14, 1842.
Diantha [6] Orcutt was born December 4, 1808, and died the next year, Aug. 12, 1809. 
Louis [6] (Lewis according to family records) Orcutt was born March 20, 1812.  He married Mary C. Wade Jan. 1, 1833.
William [6] Orcutt was born April 8, 1817.  He married first Anna Esther Damon (called Esther) of Hanover, Mass. April 9, 1837; second Anna Shaw March 13, 1849.  (See following chapter)
Orren [6] (Oran according to family records) Orcutt was born August 7, 1819.  He married first Mary J. Jones April 8, 1841 (1858 in FSO records); second Melana Winchester Sept. 14, 1861 (Jan. 1, 1859 in FSO records).

This is the first generation for which stories handed down in the family begin to be available in written form.  JOH has stories relating to both Elisha Vining Orcutt and Lewis Orcutt as adults.   The source for these accounts is a “book” written by Agnes Pinkerton Gurney, granddaughter of Oran Orcutt and his first wife Mary Jocelyn Jones through their daughter Mary Williams Orcutt.  This “book” was given to Marion Orcutt Hersey, great granddaughter of Oran Orcutt, by Edith Hart Hathaway, granddaughter of Oran Orcutt through his second wife, Melana Winchester, and their daughter Orpha Orcutt Hart.   Marion Orcutt Hersey kindly passed along the relevant pages to JOH in 2001.

Agnes refers to “Uncle Elijah” and “Aunt Ruth” but this would have been Elisha Vining Orcutt, eldest in the family and married to Ruth Damon (interesting that she has his given name slightly wrong – his speech impediment? – see below).   Lewis Orcutt married Mary C. Wade:  “Uncle Lewis” and “Aunt Mary”.  The stories delightfully reflect a child’s life in Massachusetts:

“Thus far I haven’t said much about my Orcutt relatives, and there is material for interesting stories concerning some of them. 

“As I have said, Rockland was once one of the Abingtons, of which there were North, South, East, West, and Center Abingtons; now, of them all, only North Abington is called by its original name.  The others all have been renamed.  Some of my relatives still live in North Abington, and over back of that small town is another locality called the “Thicket”.  There several families lived when I was a child.  First, there was Uncle Elijah Orcutt and


his wife, Aunt Ruth.  Uncle Elijah was my Grandfather’s oldest brother, though I couldn’t realize that anyone could be older than my grandfather who died when he was sixty-two, which now seems young to me!

“I once asked Elijah, ‘Are you really older than my grandpa?’  And Uncle Elijah, who stammered, replied, ‘Ye-e-e-es, Agnes, I was the o-o-o-oldest one in the f-f-ffamily and the biggest fool they had!’  I felt so sorry for him.

“Aunt Ruth was very different, very religious.  She interlarded her remarks with pious expressions.  For instance she might say at the table, ‘Please pass the bread, bless the Lord.’  Or, ‘have you got a headache?  Praise His holy name.’  She was an ardent Seventh Day Adventist, and she once showed me her ‘Ascension Robe’ but quickly shut the bottom drawer where it was kept.  It looked like a white night-gown to me.  On several occasions she and like-minded friends went to the dismal, unkempt ‘buryin’ ground’ to meet the Lord when He came for His ‘Second Coming.’  Why they expected him to come to such a desolate spot, I could never understand.

“Aunt Ruth was a great lover of hearty food and a fine cook.  In the fall when winter threatened she would make up her supply of mince meat and bake a large number of pies, putting one on top of another as they froze, until she had a huge pile of them – twenty or more.  The pile would be as tall as I, and was supposed to last throughout the season of freezing weather.  Nights when she couldn’t sleep she would come out of the ‘buttry’ with a piece of mince pie in one hand and a chunk of cold beef in the other.

“I liked to visit at Aunt Ruth’s, for there I could do about as I pleased, while at home I was under considerable restraint.  I once heard my Mother tell a friend that she had to give Agnes a whipping about once every three weeks to keep her in bounds, or words to that effect.  But don’t get the idea that Agnes was in any way mistreated – quite the contrary.  She was a wonderful mother, and I adored her, always.

“Uncle Elijah and Aunt Ruth made Christmas wreaths of the wild holly which grew on their place.  They sold them at the Boston market and so had employment for the cold days as well as a sum of extra cash.

“Up on the hill not far from Uncle Elijah’s lived Uncle Lewis Orcutt and his wife, Aunt Mary, and two motherless granddaughters, Ella and Louisa, who were just the right age to play with me.  They introduced me to the joys of fishing in the big mill pond in behind the house.  We would sit on a rock and see the shining little fish come and jerk at our bent pins, then go gaily away.  But we did manage to catch a few little bullheads occasionally.  Across the road there was a fine huckleberry pasture and what fun it was for us to take our little shiny tin pails and go berrying.  We always thought the most tedious part was getting the bottom covered.  So, soon after we had each located a nice bush and were hard at work, one of us would call to another, ‘Have you got your bottom covered?’  And the answer might come back, ‘Yes,” or ‘No,’ or ‘Not quite.’  Down

below the house in the orchard ran a little brook with small waterfalls here and there where we sailed our paper boats made by my mother.  There was no end to the wonderful things to do at Aunt Mary’s.    The nearby woods were full of azaleas in springtime.  To my mind nothing can equal a spring in New England unless it is a spring in Oregon.

“So the years of my childhood passed, with vacations in many delightful spots

“Once, I remember we went to Duxbury to visit at a farm on a hillside above the tide flats a few miles from the ocean.  Miles Standish’s home was near….”

The account soon comes to skipped pages.  Apparently they are determined to be irrelevant to Orcutts.   Uncle Lewis’ and Aunt Mary’s granddaughters can be identified through FSO’s genealogy:  Lewis [6] and Mary Wade Orcutt had three sons, one of whom was Albert Lewis [7] Orcutt, b. Jan. 23, 1835, m. Mary Louise ____ in 1864.  Mary Louise must have died, for her two eldest children were Ella Frances [8] Orcutt b. 1864 and Mary Louise [8] Orcutt, b. 1866.  Hence, Ella and Louisa.     (There were also two boys:  Albert Lewis [8} b. 1868, and Edgar [8] b. 1873, but no further information is available for them.  Did they survive childhood?  Possibly not.)

There was surely at least one more set of relatives who continued to live in the North Abington area.  FSO lists the family of George Brooks [7] Orcutt, son of Elisha Vining [6] and Ruth J. (Damon) Orcutt.  GBO’s son George Webster [8] Orcutt was living in North Abington in 1936 at age 78. 

Emerson 5 and Mehitable Vining Orcutt produced  the first generation of this line of Orcutts to move to the Midwest when the Western Reserve territory opened up.  Oran and his family, with 2nd wife Melana Winchester, moved to Austinburg, Ohio in about 1859.   And Oran’s nephew, William Edwin 7 Orcutt, son of Oran’s slightly older brother William 6 Orcutt moved with them (see following chapter 7).

Shoemaking/ bootmaking had become a family profession certainly by this 6th generation of the Orcutt men, and there were many shoe/boot factories in the Abington/Hanover area.  Both William 6 and Oran 6 were shoemakers, as was William’s son Wm. Edwin
7 Orcutt.   Perhaps other Abington relatives, too?

Mehitable’s Era

Once again, we do not know death dates for Emerson 5 or Mehitable Vining Orcutt.  Did they live into and through the American Civil War?  Probably the War of 1812 was of note (son Lewis was born that year), coming just eight years after their marriage; and both were born not long after the onset of the Revolutionary War and before the establishment of the U.S. Constitution.  Perhaps they lived through three major wars in

American history; if so, they were the only generation to compass that entire period.  [JOH:  future research in the Abington, Massachusetts area is anticipated for late 2002; perhaps more light can be shed on this question.]

Emerson 5 and Mehitable Vining Orcutt were the 2nd generations in both their families to live in the Abington, Massachusetts area.  This experience is worth noting, since it continues into the following, 6th generation, and indicates a lengthier settledness in one locality not found to that extent for prior or subsequent generations.   They did not move away, so far as we know, from the community where they were born and married.   This is an interesting note in the pattern of settlement in the USA, even though the Orcutts and their wives’ families mostly reflect the generally westward movement of settlement, generation by generation, through the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. 

In terms of the nation’s history, Emerson 5 and Mehitable Vining Orcutt as children witnessed the presidencies of George Washington and John Adams, then Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe, since their youngest son Oran was born in 1819 during Monroe’s presidency.   Then perhaps they were aware of the presidencies of John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, William Henry Harrison, John Tyler, James Polk, Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan – might they have lived even all the way to the presidency of Abraham Lincoln?    (Mehitable would have been 78, and Emerson 5 aged 82 in 1861.  Their grandson William Edwin 7 Orcutt was born in 1841 in Hanover, Mass. during the first year of John Tyler’s administration -- were they still alive when he and their son, his uncle Oran and family, moved to Ohio around 1859?   If so, Mehitable would have been 76, Emerson 5, aged 80.)

Much earlier in their younger lifetime on the world stage Napoleon had been active, then defeated and exiled with Europe redesigned by the Congress of Vienna in 1815.  The Louisiana Purchase tremendously extended the U.S. territory, destined to include the home settlements of three later generations, grandchildren of their grandson WEO.    (In the year of Mehitable’s birth, 1783, settlement to the west had not passed the Mississippi River.)

In the 1820s the slavery issue was set at rest for a time by the Missouri Compromise.  Railroads were introduced in the 1830s, the telegraph system in 1844.   In Massachusetts writers like Whittier, Longfellow, Hawthorne, and Emerson appeared between 1830 and 1840.    Popular education was improved.   Multi-page city newspapers began to replace the old “blanket-sheet” newspaper, first in New York City in the 1830s.  

Speculation grew in the 1820s and 30s, culminating in the panic of 1837.  What did that do to the shoe industry in the Abingtons/Hanover area? 

The war against Mexico was declared in 1846, and slavery soon became a burning issue.  Immigration mushroomed in the late 1840s and after, such that over 2 ¼ million persons from abroad settled in the U.S. between 1847 and 1854.   All that impetus helped to push
venturesome people westwards; soon this particular branch of the Orcutt line under study moved well beyond Massachusetts and the Eastern Seaboard.   But that journey remains to be depicted by the next two generations.