Saturday, April 25, 2015

Surname Saturday ~ BOUTWELL of Lynn and Reading, Massachusetts


Not much is known about James Boutwell or his origins in England.  He was made a freeman in Salem, Massachusetts on 14 February 1638/9.  The Lynn, Massachusetts court records mention a wife named Mary in 1640.  His will dated 22 August 1651 lists his wife as Alice, and his children John, James and Sarah.  He must have died soon because his will was probated four days later on 26 August 1651. 

His two sons, John and James Boutwell removed to Reading, Massachusetts from Lynn (a contiguous town).  I decend from Sargent James Boutwell and his wife, Rebecca, the daughter of Deacon Thomas Kendall.  Their gravestones are still standing at the Old Burying Ground in Wakefield, Massachusetts (formerly known as South Reading).    Their daughter, Sarah Boutwell, married John Townsend in Reading in 1698, and there my Boutwell line daughters out.

Sources for Boutwell research:

Descendants of James Boutwell of Salem and Lynn, by Donald Erienkotter

“Descendants of Abraham Bryant,” New England Historic Genealogical Society Register, Volume 137, October 1983, page 238.

Genealogical History of the Town of Reading, Massachusetts by Lilley Eaton, Boston: Alfred Mudge & Son, Printers, 1874.

Vital Records of Reading, Massachusetts

My BOUTWELL genealogy:

Generation 1:  James Boutwell, born in England, died in August 1651; married to Alice Unknown.  Three children possibly born in Massachusetts.

Generation 2:  Sargent James Boutwell, born about 1642 in Massachusetts; died 5 December 1716 in Reading, Massachusetts; married on 15 June 1665 in Reading to Rebecca Kendall, daughter of Thomas Kendall and Rebecca Payne.  She was born 10 February 1644 in Reading, and died 30 August 1713 in Reading.  Ten children.

Generation 3: Sarah Boutwell, born 7 July 1677 in Reading, died 18 September 1737 in Reading; married on 28 April 1698 in Reading to John Townsend, so of John Townsend and Sarah Pearson.  He was born 17 March 1675 in Lynn and died January 1757 in Reading.  Six children.

Generation 4: Sarah Townsend, born 25 March 1705 in Lynn; married on 17 June 1725 in Reading to Deacon Brown Emerson, son of Peter Emerson and Mary Brown.  He was born 16 April 1704 in Reading and died 16 March 1774 in Reading.  Ten children.  Sarah Townsend and Brown Emerson are the ancestors of astronaut Alan B. Shepard, Jr. of Derry, New Hampshire through two of their daughters.

Generation 5:  John Emerson m. Katherine Eaton
Generation 6:  Romanus Emerson m. Jemima Burnham
Generation 7: George Emerson m. Mary Esther Younger
Generation 8: Mary Katharine Emerson m. George E. Batchelder
Generation 9: Carrie Maude Batchelder m. Joseph Elmer Allen
Generation 10: Stanley Elmer Allen m. Gertrude Matilda Allen (my grandparents)

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Copyright © 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Friday, April 24, 2015

Tour of Tokyo, Japan 1976 ~ Photo Friday

This photograph was found among my mother-in-law's collection in San Juan, Puerto Rico.  The heat and humidity of the tropical climate has faded this photo.  You can even see splotches of mold in the top left corner and in the bottom right corner (right on a woman's leg).  I spent a lot of time scanning some of the photos from Puerto Rico, and there are more in storage waiting to be scanned.

In this photo you can see my husband and his parents right in the middle of the front row.
His mother is sitting in front of the woman with the kerchief on her head.
Vincent was about fifteen years old, to her right. and his Dad is to her left. 
Vincent has a big camera bag on his lap.  
They took dozens of photos of this trip and bought a new camera on a side excursion to Hong Kong.

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Copyright (c) 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Just When You Thought You Had Heard It All! More NERGC Blog Posts

Please see my previous post of links to blogger stories about NERGC 2015 at this link:


Jane E. Wilcox- interview of Marian Pierre-Louis

Blog posts

Liz Loveland “My Adventures in Genealogy”

Cheryll Holley “For All My Relations”

Pam Carter “My Maine Ancestry”

Dame Gussie AKA June Butka

Video Blogs

Links to Dear Myrtle’s 7  “AmbushCam” video Interviews

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Copyright © 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Weathervane Wednesday ~ Brought to you by the letter "B"

Weathervane Wednesday is an on-going series of photographs I post weekly.  I started by publishing weather vanes from the Londonderry area, but now I've been finding interesting weather vanes all across New England.  Sometimes my weather vanes are whimsical, or historical, but all are interesting. Often, my readers tip me off to some very unique and unusual weather vanes, too! If you know an interesting or historical weathervane, please let me know.

Today's collection of weather vanes is from New Hampshire.

Do you know the location of weather vane collection #205?  Scroll down to see the answer!

This weather vane is located above the Blake's Creamery ice cream restaurant at 353 South Main Street in Manchester, New Hampshire.  There used to be many Blake's located in Southern New Hampshire, but now this is there are only two and they are both in Manchester.

This weather vane is a simple letter "B".  I've seen these over businesses and even over homes, with the letter representing the surname of the homeowner.  The only other letter weather vane I'd seen in Manchester was a letter "F" over a Friendly's ice cream restaurant.  What a coincidence!  However, recently that Friendly's weather vane was changed to an ice cream cone.

Blake's Creamery website:

Click here to see the entire series of Weathervane Wednesday posts!

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Copyright (c) 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Patriot's Day ~ 19 April 2000, the 225th anniversary of the Battle of Concord Bridge

After observing the Battle of Lexington at dawn (click HERE to see that post), we jumped in the car and raced to Concord to see the re-enactment of the Battle of Concord Bridge.  It didn't take long for the British troops we had just seen in Lexington to make it all the way to Concord.  The unit above was a fife and drum corps from Williamsburg, Virginia.  

There were many people at the Lexington dawn event, but even more at the Concord re-enactment.  The event takes place on the bridge across the river, so it was more difficult to get a good view.  

After the mock battle, all the tourists trooped across the bridge to celebrate.  The re-enactors portraying the British troops began a long retreat back to Boston, stopping to remake all the skirmishes along the way.  We did not follow them, but we saw a bunch of people on bicycles who were planning to follow the British actors all the way back to Arlington. 

The Concord Minuteman

This re-enactor was relaxing on the front porch of the Concord Inn, where we stopped for lunch. 

I was surprised by the large numbers of re-enactors who came to portray the British troops.  When I asked them, they appeared to have come from quite a long ways to have the chance to be in this anniversary event.  It was much easier to find local people to portray the minutemen than the British! 

The same day we photographed these scenes, we were at the Lexington Green at dawn.  Click here to see the post of that re-enactment:

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Copyright (c) 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Monday, April 20, 2015

Patriot's Day ~ The 225th Anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord, 19 April 2000

“On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy-five;
Hardly a man is now alive
Who remembers that famous day and year”
                                From The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The original Battle at Lexington Green took place at dawn on 19 April 1775.  On the 225th anniversary of this battle, we lined up extra early that morning.  It's very cold in New England in April, so we had warm clothes and blankets.  It was still dark when the actors began to assemble. The men of the town militia lined up on the common, and the women and children withdrew to the sidelines, and we could hear the British advancing down the road from Boston toward us... very scary, even though we knew it was a re-enactment!

Here are some old images from our family slides that I digitized.  The quality is poor, but it brings back memories of that event…

The two sides exchanged some words. 
Suddenly, we heard "the shot heard 'round the world" and the battle had begun!

I knew that the first two men to fall in battle were the brother and brother-in-law of my 5th great grandfather, Andrew Munroe (1718 - 1766).  His brother, Robert Munroe (1712 - 1775) and Jonas Parker (married to his sister Lucy Munroe), were in the front lines.  This was a position of honor because they both were veterans from the French and Indian war.  Both were bayoneted.  I was surprised that my reaction to seeing their re-enactors "killed" was to burst into tears.

The Lexington militia withdrew to the woods, and the "dead" remained on the common. 

The women and children ran over to their "dead" family members.

The British fired a round before marching on to the town of Concord...

My daughter, only 13 years old at the time, covered her ears during the gun fire.

Then, a "miracle" happened!  The dead re-enactors rose up from Lexington Green, with applause from the audience.  We could hear the British marching away to the west towards Concord. 

The actors above and below were portraying Robert Munroe and Jonas Parker.   
Both are my 5x great grand uncles.  They were both the first two men killed in battle. 

I have a previous blog post about this experience (without photos)  at this link…

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Copyright (c) 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Catch up on all the NERGC 2015 Blog Posts!

Providence, Rhode Island at night

Pre-conference posts:

Kathleen McCracken

Jake Fletcher

June Butka

Jennifer Shoer – Scrappy Genealogist -  Ambush Cam  31 March 2015

Laurie Desmarais

Kathleen McCracken

At the conference reporting
From Maine to Kentucky by Elizabeth Pyle Handler

Jake Fletcher

Nutfield Genealogy by Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Pam Carter

Dear Myrtle’s “Ambush Cam” at the conference:

Origins Connector (Michael Maglio) 

Blogger Interviews of conference speakers:

Lori Lynn Price – Bridging the Past – Judy Russell

Linda Hall Little – Passage to the Past -   Michael J. Hall

Pam Carter – My Maine Ancestry -  Josh Taylor

Beverly Fieg – Knit Genealogist  - 

Cynthia Shenette – Heritage Zen -  Lisa Louise Cooke

Sara Campbell – Remembering Those who Came before us – Marian Pierre-Louis

Jennifer Shoer – Scrappy Genealogist – Dr. Blaine Bettinger

Elizabeth Handler – From Maine to Kentucky -  Harold Henderson

Pam Carter – My Maine Ancestry – Casey Zahn

Bill West – West in New England – Michael Tougias

Melissa Berry – Ancestory Archives – Lisa Alzo

Bill West – West in New England – Michael Brophy

Melissa Berry – Ancestory Archives – David Allen Lambert

If you know of more NERGC 2015 posts, please let me know and I’ll add them here!

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Copyright © 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo

Patriot's Day - 18 April 2000, the day before the 225th Anniversary of the Battles of Lexington and Concord

Lexington Common, 2000

This re-enactor was portraying Ebenezer Munroe, a cousin to my 5th great grandfather, Andrew Munroe.  There were many Munroe family members at the Battle of Lexington, you can see the list of those I have identified HERE.  

Of course, we had a long conversation about the Munroe family.  He had researched his role very well, and knew the family history.  (I was in a wheelchair because of a badly twisted ankle - but I didn't want to miss this event, no matter what!)

This monument (seen at the top of this blog post) lists the names of the men killed on Lexington Green, and is the final burial spot of the fallen.  My daughter (13 years old at the time) laid flowers on this gravesite.  We do this whenever we visit Lexington. 

There were a huge number of re-enactors at this anniversary event of the Battles of Lexington and Concord.  They were encamped in the fields next to a school a block away from Lexington Common.  We saw sutlers, militia units, and all sorts of great period equipment and costumes. 

At the Munroe Tavern, there were re-enactors demonstrating the medical equipment used in the field during the Revolutionary War period.  After the Battle of Lexington, and before the retreat to Boston, the British used the Munroe Tavern as a field hospital. 

I enjoyed seeing what interesting items the sutlers had for sale! 

Stay tuned!  Tomorrow I will post photos of the Battle of Lexington re-enactment from 19 April 2000, the 225th anniversary. 

Munroe Cousins at the Battle of Lexington -  A blog post from 2010

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Copyright (c) 2015, Heather Wilkinson Rojo