Redemption Rock is located in a tiny quarter acre park in Princeton, Massachusetts, near the Westminster border on Route 140. It is a small park with a big colonial history.
During King Philip’s War, the town of Lancaster, Massachusetts was attacked by Native Americans on 10 February 1676. Mary White Rowlandson (1637 – 1711) and three of her children, and twenty other settlers were kidnapped for many months until a 20 pound ransom was arranged by John Hoar, a Concord resident. The release and ransom of Mary happened in April right here at this large boulder, which was on the boundary between the white settlers and the wilderness where the native people lived.
Later, she wrote a book called The Sovereignty and Goodness of God: Being a Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson published in 1682 in Boston and also in London. It was considered a bestseller of its time.
|A first edition of Mary Rowlandson's book|
published in Boston in 1682
John Hoar was the missionary to the praying Indians of the region. He negotiated for her ransom, which was paid by some wealthy Boston women. Hoar took Mary back to Boston to be with her husband, the Reverend Joseph Rowlandson, and two surviving children. In 1677 he was called to be the minister at Wethersfield, Connecticut, where he died in 1678. Mary took her children back to Boston where she wrote her memoir. She married Captain Samuel Talcott in 1679, and died in 1711.
John Hoar (1622 – 1704) is the father of my 9th great aunt, Elizabeth Hoar who married Jonathan Prescott (1643 – 1721) of Concord, Massachusetts. Jonathan’s sister, Mary Prescott, is my 8th great grandmother. Mary’s second husband, Captain Samuel Talcott is my 2nd cousin, 9 generations removed.
My genealogy link to Mary White Rowlandson:
William Skinner m. Margery Trotter
John Talcott m. Anne Skinner John Skinner m. Mary Loomis
John Talcott m. Dorothy Mott Joseph Skinner m. Mary Filley
Joseph Rowlandson m.1 Mary White m.2. Samuel Talcott John Skinner m. Sarah Porter
Aaron Skinner m. Eunice Taintor
Charles Skinner m. Sarah Osborn
Ann Skinner m. Thomas Ratchford Lyons
Isabella Lyons m. Ingraham E. Bill
Caleb Rand Bill m. Ann Margaret Bollman
Albert Munroe Wilkinson m. Isabella Lyons Bill
Donald Munroe Wilkinson m. Bertha Louise Roberts
For more information:
Redemption Rock Park http://www.thetrustees.org/places-to-visit/central-ma/redemption-rock.html
The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson, by Mary Rowlandson, Cambridge, Massachusetts: University Press, 1803 (facsimile reproduction of the original) available to read online at Google Book Search.
New England Captives Carried to Canada Between 1677 and 1760 during the French and Indian Wars, by Emma Lewis Coleman, (originally published in two volumes in 1925) Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2012.
The Name of War: King Philip’s War and the Origins of American Identity, by Jill Lepore, New York: Alfred A. Knopf publishers, 1998.
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Copyright © 2013, Heather Wilkinson Rojo